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February, 2011:

Pi is All…

Take any irrational (perhaps transcendental) number and write out it’s decimal (or whatever) expansion, but we’ll go with decimal…

3.141592…

Pi is both irrational and transcendental. Those terms actually mean something beyond middle-aged Guardian readers being bummed for enlightenment by some swami with a beard you could lose a badger in.

It means this… It means everything and nothing. Take hold Nick! You are getting metaphysical on us!. Yes, I am. That is infinity. I could have done all sorts of things at university (even PPE – naughty!) but I did physics. I studied because I wanted to touch the fire. I did electives in discrete mathematics (I bum-fucked them) and infinity came into them. As did I.

If you code (anyhow) those infinite digits to ASCII then you will have to find somewhere in that jumble the complete works of Shakespeare. You will find the King James Bible, the Qu’ran, Jade Goody, “getting her kebab out”. Everything is there in the ratio of the circumference to the diameter of a circle. Everything!

That is what infinite means. And I don’t just mean Jade’s piss-flaps.

Finding in that what you really want. Now that is the trick!

So that is why I did physics. Kids might want the keys to their dad’s Porsche but I didn’t (he had a Nissan). Instead I got the keys to the Universe. Oh, I lived in some rum gaffs (one had a tampon affixed to the ceiling) for it but that feeling when I walked out of my final exam at Nottingham knowing I’d fucking cunted it (fluid dynamics was the final exam) and my immediate fluids was 35cls of ice cold vodka and a blow-job just down the road at Nightingale Hall… Sometimes it is just so good to be alive. Q. 6 had a flaw in it. And I spotted it and pointed it out. Gods, I was that good.

So was the vodka and the blow-job and the 80% on that exam. That is UK style where 70% is a first.

And the cigar. I had a cigar.

Dear sweet Jesus! That day went from eviscerating my final exam (in pencil!) to getting drunk as a skunk, having a spliff (I exchanged puffs for swigs with a pal) and getting blown by a fit blonde with tits ’till Wednesday. It was fucking emotional I can tell you.

Anyway, back to infinity. It’s a puzzler isn’t it?

I am though glad I see it as much as I can (by which I see reality) beyond the mere numbers. Perhaps that means I see reality more as it really is. I hope so. I really do. That would be something almost worth the cost of a blow-job. I didn’t have the eyes to be an RAF pilot and my life is fucked-up for being an astrophysicist but I still look to the skies.

I want the stars. I really do.

You can’t imagine how much. You really can’t.

Per Ardua ad Astra!

And to at least the first Aleph!

Tunisia

Why is the BBC so disinterested in what follows when the people speak in these lands? Answers on a Koran…

The BBC is not disinterested, although it bloody well should be. What it is, instead, is uninterested – which it bloody well should not be.

Sex Discrimination In The (Government) Workplace

I stumbled across these statistics on teacher numbers at the Office of National Statistics.

The fall [in overall teacher numbers] in the 1980s and 1990s was largely driven by a reduction in the number of male teachers (particularly secondary school teachers). Between 1981/82 and 1997/98 the number of full-time male teachers fell from 199,000 to 137,000. The number of full-time female teachers was relatively stable over the period, ranging from 293,000 in 1981/82 to 283,000 in the mid 1980s and early 1990s and rising to 292,000 in 1997/98. From 1997/98 (when the upturn in total teacher numbers began) the rise in the number of female teachers continued and by 2004/05 had risen to 308,000. The number of male teachers had continued to fall, to 133,000 in 2004/05.

From a gender perspective, it seems pretty obvious that when teaching numbers are reduced, the men are preferentially pushed overboard. When overall numbers rise, women are preferentially hired to replace them. It seems pretty clear that there is “institutional discrimination” occurring on a massive scale.

In both nursery and primary schools, 85 per cent of full-time teachers were female in 2004/05. In secondary schools there was less difference between the sexes – 56 per cent of full-time teachers were female.

Since any gender imbalance is, we know, always the consequence of discrimination- even if people appear to be making different life choices, that is because they are living in a discriminatory society- then an 85/15 gender imbalance must be one of the worst in the professional economy. Since these jobs are government jobs, the situation is even more appalling. Is it not the government who are supposed to save us from discrimination?

Where are the lobby groups demanding that something must be done to correct this gender discriminatory outrage?

The Only Way is Essex

Tourism in Essex has soared by 140 per cent after hit reality TV show The Only Way is Essex came to the screen.

Internet searches for weekend breaks have soared – despite the county being portrayed as a tacky place filled with nightclubs, beauty salons and bars.

I just love that (my emphasis) “despite” there. Go on Daily Mail!

For the record I know Essex very vaguely so I can’t really comment on the reality of it. As to the “reality” TV show…

The show, narrated by Essex girl Denise Van Outen, regularly pulls in one million viewers on ITV2.

One million people watch that! I have seen it and it’s dreadful. It’s like “Footballer’s Wives” without the production values, acting or plot. It’s fucking abysmal. Now before anyone gets on a high horse here it has to be said my taste in TV is decidedly puerile non-Reithian. I am not the sort to watch Brian Sewell on BBC4 wittering on about Caravaggio and buggery*. My current favourite TV show is the re-runs of ‘Allo ‘Allo.

But there is a difference between well-done puerile and some jerk with a camcorder from Currys on 50 quid a day plus expenses (mainly Ginster’s**). Fair play to ITV2 if they can get a million people to watch that unmitigated shite.

For the record I live in Cheshire (the Essex of the North – allegedly) and the local estate agent is currently offering the opportunity to buy, for a mere 325K, “The Cottage at Ball Beard Farm”.

I’m trying to end this with a witty one-liner. I’m almost tempted to set up consortium to buy it. Just as long as I get to be the Indian Chief. That will have to do.

*The buggery is not mentioned enough as far as I’m concerned because the rest is just pretentious wank,
**Ever had a Ginsters? I did once. I prayed to all the gods in Valhalla because for me to have died then would have been the most profound of all mercies.

RAB on the Tonemeister

Bliar is the most venal, self serving, self delusional, two faced utter cunt, ever to smarm his way into 10 Downing Street.

Along with the wince inducing, mincing Machiavelli, Mandleson, the Ton Ton Macute, Alistair Campbell and the sociopath Gurnin Gordon, he has managed to wreck this country to buggery and beyond.

And his crystal skrying, candle sniffing, navel gazing malicious bitch of a wife, aided and abetted him at every turn, like Lady Macbeth.

But you know what? when history gets to be written, I bet my fuckin boots that our Tone will come out as a pretty straight kind of guy. Well straight if you want to use him to open a wine bottle, and it will be still be Maggie what gets the blame for everything!

Kitty Kounter RAB commenting over at Samizdata.

I only have one issue. Lady MacBeth was the instigator at least as much as the abettor. But, still, magic stuff from RAB!

Jacqui does Ballast

"Empty your Balls", says Jacqui!

"Empty your Balls", says Jacqui!

Jacqui Smith has made a documentary about pornography.

Rowan Pelling has this to say about it.

[Jacqui] Smith’s disingenuousness continued yesterday with her declaration that she decided to make a documentary on pornography because most people, herself included, “don’t know very much about it” – which leaves you mystified, given that she [used to be Home Secretary and thus] was the person who was meant to legislate for its control.

I’m linking to Mark here, not the Telegraph directly because I feel bad enough stealing his post. Unlike Ms Smith (who is entirely busty substances – in more civilised times she would have played a tyrannical matron ultimately outwitted by Sid James) I so have some moral fibre. I stole from Mark because I want to amplify Ms Pelling’s point and make one of my own.

Obviously Ms Pelling’s gotcha is delicious but the taste rapidly turns sour when you appreciate that despite admitting not to knowing anything about porn (could have asked hubby) Jacqui Smith actually introduced legislation concerning pornography.

The absurd, utterly illiberal and frankly Stalinist Section 63 of the Criminal Justice and Immigration Act 2008 was introduced under her watch. Jacqui Smith was Home Secretary between 28 June 2007 and 5 June 2009.

I said “Stalinist” and I mean it in the sense that apart from anything else the law is staggeringly loosely defined. I said “absurd” because it makes it illegal to portray by almost any means acts between consenting adults that are not in themselves illegal. It is also illegal to possess such images – even if it is just you and the missus getting kinky and videoing it for your own private edification. As to “illiberal” – do I really need to explain? If you want to know more this is a good place to start.

Now you might be thinking, “but porn is bad” or “porn doesn’t matter to me” and Nick is just thumping his libertarian drum for the noise it makes but the principles behind, assumptions made by, and potential applications of this law are staggering and very scary.

Just two further points…

I assume fantasizing about coating Ms Smith’s minge in treacle and releasing the honey badger is a thought crime. Drawing a cartoon of it certainly be highly illegal.

…and given recent “events” at Samizdata and here I just have to point out that Ms Smith read PPE at Hertford College, Oxford. I am naughty.

Boneyard at Birth

£4 Billion for 9 airframes soon to be in a Coke can near you!

That's a completely new aircraft

It has gone way past piano wire. That would be a mercy. I think it behooves us to consider this for all responsible…

Libyan, Socialist, Evil

From the Telegraph’s Libya Live feed

The London School of Economics has abandoned its educational program funded by a charity chaired by Saif-al-Islam, son of Libyan leader Muammar Qaddafi, following a “highly distressing” crackdown on government protesters in the North African nation, Bloomberg reports.

What, you just noticed that something is not quite right with Libya, LSE? What prompted this, killing people in public rather than killing them decently in private? I like the “highly distressing” part; imagine a bunch of hard-left academics sobbing into their hankies after a brutal collision with reality.

The London-based school suspended its LSE Global Governance research center, which had received funding from the Gaddafi International Charity and Development Foundation.

Because of course vicious dictatorships have so much to teach the world about “governance”.

Qaddafi’s son is a graduate of the LSE

We need to run an ad campaign with that as the slogan.

Don’t blow sunshine up my butt

Congressman Allen West demonstrates, yet again, the best way to deal with smear, propaganda and misinformation is information, information, and more information, the hard stuff.

Way to go Congressman.

The truth is out there.

Allen Akbar

When will the “mainstream” media point out that the dicator of Libya, Muammar Muhammed al-Qaddafi, is a life long socialist.

That is it, I am not asking the msm to explain that “Islamic Socialism” was very popular in (amongst other places) the Hyde Park area of Chicago. With leading Islamists (of this faction – i.e. Islamic Socialists) and Marxists giving each other money and jobs (often from organizations created by rich, and now dead, Republicans) on the grounds that both groups were socialist and their common enemy was the “capitalist” United States. A “Red/Green alliance” against “Imperialist” America and the “Imperialist” West in general.

I do not expect the media to engage in what they would call “unfair Obama bashing” – I do not expect them to mention Barack Obama at all.

All I want them to do is to mention that the tyrant of Libya, whose bloodstained hands organised terror at home and international terrorism in the rest of the world, was a lifelong and dedicated socialist.

Surely this is not too much to ask?

Remember the Alamo…

Texas looks almost certain to allow handguns to be carried on Campus, way to go you Texicans! Wish we had even an iota of it here.

Here’s the link

Not much more to say, except look at the tone of the written article, including the pic (shooting yourself in the head!) and the strength of what are obviously British commentors agreeing with the new Legislation.

I thought this was just me…

Course, as we all know, I start struggling at the third part.
(Mind you, not that I’m whining or anything, but the occasional bout of clinical depression makes the last stage a bit tougher for some of us.)

H/T: Rand Simberg.

Fookin’ amazing…

I don’t know if anyone saw the interview with former D*Ream pop merchant and BBC “accessible” science flavour-of-the-month Brian Cox – sorry, Professor Brian Cox (he’s an actual scientist, you know) – in yesterday’s Telegraph. It was in the magazine thingy, so I doubt if it’s online. It contained this cracker:

I’m guessing he finds climate deniers [sic] frustrating?

“Yeah, they’re incredibly irritating.

Right back atcha there, Coxie, but do continue…

Climate modelling is a difficult science, but there is a consensus about the modelling. Putting CO2 into the atmosphere will warm the climate.

Duh. But by how much? That’s the several trillion dollar question, and the answers we’ve heard from the “Consensus” (ha!) so far have been – and I say this with confidence – wildly wrong. It’s all about the forcing, Bri: does it accelerate the warming, or is it just bollocks?

But here’s the kicker. You’re going to love this:

Science makes no claim to be true, what it does is give us theories and models of nature that work, given what we know. It’s also about finding data that disagrees with the model, that way you can make a better model.”

Brian, Brian, Brian… where to begin? Have you, a physicist, even been following the debate? Because a believer bringing up the notion of falsifiction is, to put it mildly, a bit fucking rich. You want data that disagree with the model? Try looking at sea levels. Or upper-atmosphere temperatures and humidity. Try reading WUWT. Or Climate Audit. It’s all there if you look for it. The last thing the Consensus wants is data that disagrees with it. It doesn’t want a better model; it wants one that fits with its political agenda. This is not normal science were talking about, pretty-boy.

Jesus.

(Actually, on that note, his take on atheism – Dawkins is too shrill, if you want to believe something that isn’t true that’s fine as long as you don’t force it on anyone else – is pretty good.)

Libyan Aspirations

It looks like the “protesters” are getting the upper hand in Libya, as I write this. I’m not sure when a “protester” becomes a “revolutionary” but they seem to have passed that line, wherever it is. Knowing nothing about Libyan politics, I looked up the primary opposition organisation on Wikipedia, The National Front for the Salvation of Libya. They appear to have been around for a while, and probably have CIA backing, which may or may not be a good thing. But I was interested to read that they want

Democratic government with constitutional guarantees, free elections, a free press, and separation of powers among the executive, legislative, and judicial branches.

I hope they can get all of those things. I hope also that one day so will we.

Dear Perry De Havilland…

Well, yesterday I managed to trigger Perry de Havilland’s narcissistic personality disorder and get banned from Samizdata for, er, agreeing with (respected Samizdata and CCinZ writer) Paul Marks, over a very curious matter- the not particularly controversial observation that Oxford’s PPE degree is a feeder for the State apparat. Davey Boy Cameron has one, Ed Balls has one, the Millipede Brothers have them, the BBC writes articles about it, Wikipedia has a great long list of them and casually and correctly states in its article on PPE that it was created as a more modern replacement for “Classics”, the previous booster degree into the Civil Service, politics etc.

But none of that’s good enough for young Peregrine because, er, “a writer” at Samizdata has one. So apparently therefore criticising it is a deeply wounding insult to Samizdata, or “the writer”, or Perry de Havilland, or Libertiarans everywhere, or something. I have no idea which. Anyway, if you’re interested in watching the unedifying spectacle of young Peregrine once again lapsing straight into furious denunciation while entirely bypassing any attempt at a rational discussion, throwing his toys out of his pram and pulling the “I owns this site, you is BANNED” thing (you can just see him typing that with his chest puffed out and shouting PWNED at his spittle coated monitor), feel free to read the thread.

Anyway, I wouldn’t have posted this except for how the thread continued after my removal from the company of decent folks. Another commenter, “will”, posted a supportive (to my comments) comment and young master Peregrine replied with something which initially mystified me-

I will continue to show people the door who are wilfully acting like jackasses on Samizdata “Will” (yeah right).

What can he mean by “”Will” (yeah, right)”? I thought for a moment it might be something to do with a pun on the word “will” but I couldn’t think of one. Then after puzzling for a moment, and looking at the rest of young Peregrine’s deranged ranting, I realised that he thinks that “Will” is me, using some sock puppet screen name.

Yeah, right, Perry.

Hence his franting keyboard banging like this, directed at Will-

You are only a ‘dissenter’ in the sense a obnoxious drunk at a party is a ‘dissenter’, tearfully complaining on the cold side walk about how his right of ‘free speech’ (on someone else’s property) have been cruelly trampled when he get kicked out the front door for being a boorish nuisance.

You fail to understand a great many things… education is only about “what professions require what” if that is what you wish to be educated for. Some people take the view that specialisation is for insects and in libertopia people will take courses that do not meet with your approval much as they do now.

Sorry Perry, it isn’t me. You’re a paranoid loon, mate. I recommend you use that advanced degree-honed brain of yours to check the IP addresses, but if you’re not up to that, you can see both myself and Will in this thread at the Libertarian Alliance blog.

I like the delusions of grandeur in the above quote as well, as young Peregrine divides the world into people like himself and, er, “insects”. If the blogging doesn’t work out, he can always get a job as a megalomaniac Bond villain, or something. I wonder if he passes the time in front of a mirror practicing phrases like, “I will crush you… like an egg!” and “They laughed at me the fools, but they won’t be laughing any more!!!111!111!”

So anyway, I’m just pointing that out here, because I can’t point it out there, because, as we are all constantly reminded, Perry owns it, property rights, etc etc.

Now, back to your normal diet of insightful libertarian commentary from the CCinZ team. Apologies for this interruption.

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