Saturday, 30 April 2016

Post Title Of The Month

Lynne at 'Counting Cats...' on that Emma Thompson protest:

Quote Of The Month

Patently Rubbish on professional bodies and politics:
"The EU's involvement in the trade mark registration process has therefore been to devalue a registration and to place a new burden on trade mark owners, while raking in the cash (see my previous post). They could have helped businesses, for example by creating a central registry holding searchable details of all the marks in all the EU countries, allowing us to clear new trade marks easily, cheaply and quickly; that would have been a genuinely valuable resource (but would not have been as profitable for the EU). But instead, they just created another level of complexity for the system.
And I haven't even got onto the real minutiae of class fee structures and specification drafting - two more areas where the EU's influence has again made life more difficult for businesses.
Suffice to say that I shall be disagreeing with the assumption by my professional institutes that we should vote to stay in."

Post Of The Month

The inimitable David Thompson finds one that just can't be topped...

But there's always May.

When Did We Become Superstitious Medieval Peasants?

As the chief constable spoke, a Labour MP called for his force to be shut down and reconfigured.
Bassetlaw MP John Mann said: “Nobody should pre-judge ongoing inquiries into the police, but whatever conclusions they reach, the credibility of the institution of South Yorkshire Police has been irreparably damaged.
“It needs a new identity and more importantly a new ethos and ethics. South Yorkshire Police should be disbanded.”
So we are demolishing  perfectly good houses because a murderer lived there, airbrushing DJs and singers out of historical documentaries because unsubstantiated allegations have been made, now this madness?

When do we start demanding no CCTV because it’s ‘stealing our souls’..?

Friday, 29 April 2016

This List Of ‘Uman Rites Is Getting Longer And Longer…

Pressure is mounting for Essex's highways boss to stand down over "arrogant" remarks he made about a streetlights petition.
What did he say? And does he not have the right to say it?
Mother-of-two Traci Beamish launched a campaign calling for the lights to be turned back on overnight after her home in Ghyllgrove, Basildon, was burgled last week.
Despite more than 2,700 people signing the petition, Mr Bass branded the bid "nonsense".
Well, that’s a little impolite. But the overreaction is…well, frankly, bonkers!
Miss Beamish, who has two disabled children, told the Echo how raiders ransacked her garage, which contained medical equipment for her son. She said the insensitive remarks made by Mr Bass rocked her faith in Essex County Council.
She added: “Our police has been cut so we have to police ourselves, but how can we do that if we can’t see at night?
“I know of many cases where people’s houses have been burgled and the police can’t help because the CCTV is too dark.
“He should make an apology to the people who care about this, and he should stand down.
“It is people’s human right to feel safe and it is our right to be listened to without being told we are talking nonsense.”
It’s your right to get up a petition. But it’s not your right to not to be told you’re talking nonsense if that’s indeed what you are doing.
Rochford Council leader Terry Cutmore believes crime is not related to poor lighting, and called on residents to be vigilant. He said: "The way Mr Bass handled the petition is his matter, he clearly has a distinct opinion on the matter.
"Crime is mostly from gangs in London. I don't think street lighting prevents crime, thieves are more likely to operate in the day when they can see."
Mr Cutmore added that resident in fear of being burgled should invest in improved security.
Sound advice.

The Modern 'Typical Young Lad'..

Ian Adlington, Marsden Heights Community College headteacher, said: “Mohammed’s death has very much set the tone for the day.
“There have been a lot of tears.
“Many people are quite distraught.
“It’s come as a huge shock to them.
“He was a very popular lad with an extensive group of friends.
“Mohammed was a typical young lad really. I’m really sad to say this has happened.
“We talk about the dangers that are out there in life generally, but the realisation these things can actually happen without warning comes as a shock to all of us.”
It doesn't really come as a shock to me anymore that a 16 year old has access to a high powered car and drives it into a tree.

One might argue that it shouldn't come as a shock to you either.

Thursday, 28 April 2016

*Crosses 'Go Shopping With Deborah Orr' Off The Bucket List*

This woman – small, cropped hair, all in black, a tiny rucksack almost managing to create the illusion of healthy proportion – was choosing ice-cream in a frenzy of extreme mental distress. She would lean over the huge cabinet, her eyes darting over the plastic tubs in terror, as if one of them – she didn’t know which – had the gun that was going to kill her. Then, she would rotate her head, making sure no one was near, and she’d seize the flavour she had decided on, cradle the carton to her chest and scurry furtively towards the checkout. But, she would change her mind, scurry back to her spot, replace her selection and pace agitatedly away, hugging herself, putting her hands by her sides, hugging herself again. Then pace back. Then pace away. Then pace back and start trying again to decide which – if any – carton of ice-cream to purchase. The poor woman was locked compulsively into making a literally agonising choice.
So...does she need you goggling at her, Debotah?
I knew what was happening. Of course I did.
Of course you did....
Here was a woman in plain view in a public place, in the throes of a savage mental breakdown. The heft of her guilt, shame and self-loathing was obvious, but I didn’t know how to approach her, or whether it would be wise to try at all.
Maybe she just really couldn't decide between salted caramel and Bailey's. I sometimes have the same problem.

Of course, I usually solve it by buying both...
Strangely, no one else seemed to notice this searingly painful psychodrama.
No-one else has your searing insight, Deborah. Not to mention your all-encompassing compassion.
I thought of dialling 999 – this was in the days before 111. But I knew it would be useless.
Well....that's not the word I'd have chosen.
Then – third time lucky – she strode all the way to the checkout, bought the ice-cream and left the supermarket, taking all of her considerable troubles with her. All I could do was hope she had good support from her family and friends who loved her, and access to mental-health services that knew what they were doing. People do recover from eating disorders, mostly. People are also killed by them. Far too often.
*stifles comment*
...maybe it’s just the middle-class circles I move in, but what I notice about young people who fall victim to eating disorders is that they’re very often people who have complex, dazzling choices.
So we should all be restricted to a choice of vanilla ice cream, or nothing. For our own good.

As You Do…

Wilson, 22, of Bingley Road, Saltaire, and Syms, 28, of Ash Tree, New Cross Street, pleaded guilty to unlawfully wounding Mr McCabe on December 14, 2014.
Wilson, who had previous convictions for robbery and battery, was jailed for 32 months.
He brought cannabis into the dock with him for the sentencing hearing.
Maybe the CPS are habitual users too, and that’s why it took over a year to get to court?

Wednesday, 27 April 2016

Silly Season Gets Underway Early...

A big cat expert says a black panther could be prowling the Worcestershire wilderness after the grisly discovery of yet another mangled deer carcass.
A big cat expert? Which one? Boone Smith? Billy Arjan Singh?
Researcher Rick Minter, author of 'Big Cats: Facing Britain's Wild Predators'...
Oh. Damn. Him again? Well, he's not the only nutter out there.
...said photographs of the dead deer showed several of the hallmarks of a big cat having been eating the carcass.
The 54-year-old, who has been studying the presence of big cats in Britain for the last decade...
That can't have taken very long...
He argued that big cat sightings were widespread in Worcestershire and were often reported to him at country shows where he performed outreach work.
Is that what he calls it on his tax returns?
However, even the experts do not agree. Bob Lawrence, head of public relations and development at West Midland Safari and Leisure Park, does not believe a leopard was responsible and has visited the site of the kills.
He said: "I visited the Roe deer burial site today. The original Roe buck is largely eaten away but there is also a Roe doe dead close by, probably his companion as they tend to live in pairs/trios.
"There is no evidence to suggest neck injuries consistent with strangulation (the leopards preferred choice of killing) or a broken neck.
"Both carcasses to me clearly seem to originate from the roadside and have been dumped over the hedge probably out of sensitivity and one at least had been there a while as the grass underneath was turning yellow.
"There are clear tramlines to show how both have been dragged into the field (by badgers I suspect as there are badger runs nearby) where they have been eaten - a fox has joined in by the smell of it."
Back to the drawing board, Minter.

Can You 'Brainstorm' Without A Brain?

A new safe space for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people to socialise could be created in the borough after people from all walks of life brainstormed ways to tackle intolerance.
Then they all sang 'Kumbayah' and held hands....
Participants looked at questions compiled at the first event and how the police – represented by Barking and Dagenham Acting Sgt Rob Bills – and the council had answered them.
Accusations of “rigid” and “robotic” wording in the authorities’ responses moved to a proactive brainstorming in how LGBTQI communities can work with authorities to move forward.
Broadway Theatre emerged as a “safe social space to go for a laugh, for a date, to watch a film”, summarised CVS chief excutive Erica Jenkins, who has promised to help make a regular meeting happen.
Doesn't meeting at a regular time and place make it easier for the sort of people who'd start trouble to find you?
FlipSide member Petra Brockman, 17, identifies as bigendered. Along with other teenagers from the group, they are looking for ways to transform sex education in schools.
“For me the teaching is currently more static than gender fluidity is,” explained the Barking and Dagenham College student, who aims to produce a new sex education syllabus with other FlipSide members.
*rolls eyes*

Tuesday, 26 April 2016


Christmas school holidays are being slashed with a council playing the role of Scrooge. Children could get their shortest holiday in years after Essex County Council decided to get rid of the traditional two week break during the festive period.
Booo! Hisss!
Term dates for the academic year 2017/18 have been announced by the local education authority. They reveal rather than breaking up on Friday, December 15, schools will not finish for another five days until Wednesday, December 20.
Term time will resume on January 2. It means there will only be 12 days between the end of the autumn term and the start of the Spring term.
Oh noes! The poor darlings! Whatever will they do?
… But the cut will be a blow to teachers, who ignoring bank holidays and weekends will only get a five day break, and could cause childcare issues for parents, especially if different schools opt for different periods off.
Schools aren’t a holiday camp or a childminding service. Suck it up.

"It's OK, They Were Just Incompetent, Not Corrupt!"

Mr Alston said: "Councillor Bass was subject to prolonged and significant nuisance phone calls and correspondence to his family home and, for understandable reasons, he brought this to the attention of Essex Police.
"Following your complaint about your arrest and the search of your home, the Essex Police professional standards department investigated the matter, and found the search of your house was unlawful.
"It has now been made clear to me by the Essex Police legal team that the grounds used for arresting you 'do not withstand scrutiny'.
"In short, the view of the force solicitor is that your arrest was unlawful.
"I share the Essex Police judgement that the mistakes made were the result of lack of officer knowledge and supervision.
"I do not believe these mistakes were the result of undue influence having been applied."
Right. It's just pure coincidence that Essex Farce happens to be incompetent in just this way, eh?

Want to buy this, Mr Alston? It'd look good over the Thames Estuary...
"It is essential Essex Police learns from their errors, and I have been informed management action has been taken against the key officers and supervisors involved."
Essex Police, learn from their errors?

The former Met Police officer has suggested he may pursue a further compensation claim against Essex Police following the unlawful arrest admission.
*orders large bag of popcorn*

Monday, 25 April 2016

Child Exploitation Bad!

…except when done in the interests of ‘social justice’ by teachers, of course:
A ten-year-old girl from West Wickham has launched a campaign against the use of cobalt mined by children in smartphone batteries.
And just how did she discover this issue?
Cerys Nicholls-Jones, who goes to Wickham Court School, was shocked to learn that companies including Apple are failing to do basic checks to ensure that the cobalt they use isn’t mined by child labourers.
Cerys couldn’t forget the topic after her teacher Samira Al-jboury, 26, taught a lesson based on an Amnesty International report into child labour.
All the pupils in the class wrote a letter to the CEO of Apple after the lesson, but Cerys was so bothered by the thought of this injustice that she had to do something else.
So ‘education’ these days consists of learning how to be a good little SJW and harass people with unsolicited mail?

Someone needs to have a word with the governors.
The Year 5 pupil said: “I feel devastated when I realise that for me to charge my iPod, children are risking their lives by working in mines.
“While I listen to music and play Minecraft, other children are not enjoying their childhood and are working as hard as adults in very dangerous conditions.”
Well, given their other options are usually starving, slaving in fields or being pimped out in the sex work industry, they might be glad of mine work.

Maybe you should ask your teacher why people who can’t support children keep having them instead? Or is it easier – and more in keeping with ‘social justice’ bullshit - to blame a big corporation?
Ms Al-jboury, who has been teaching at the school for a year, said she was surprised at how much the children continued to talk about her lesson outside the class. She says: “Even if we do not get a response from Apple, it is good for the children to understand the connection between things.
“It would be great to get as many people involved as possible. “I hope someone in this corporation feels something and listens and there is a change.”
Yes, me too. I rather hope there’s some changes at this school. Do they really need a teacher who fills the kids’ heads with this lefty crap?

It's Better To Not Go On Facebook And Be Thought A Fool...

....than log on and remove all possible doubt:
...just 40 minutes after Judge Beverley Lunt handed out her sentence, Daniel posted on Facebook: “Beverly Lunt go suck my C***. Cannot believe my luck 2 year suspended sentence beats the 3 year jail yes pal!”
Lest you think he's the only cretin in the family...
Less than an hour later his dimwit brother Samuel commented: “What a day it’s been Burnley crown court !! up ur ass aha nice 2year suspended f*** the 3year in forest bank.”
But to their horror the posts were brought to the attention of the judge and they were brought back to Burnley Crown Court so she could review their sentence.
She said she had let them both off with a two years prison term suspended for 18 months because of their supposed “remorse and contrition”.
What? You mean that wasn't sincere? Well, you could knock me down with a feather!
Judge Lunt said they had both claimed to have “changed” and got themselves jobs - but they had now shown their true colours.
She fumed about their social media posts: “It is plain they were never intended for me to see it. One is 40 minutes at most from passing sentence and one is one hour 25 minutes after I passed sentence.
“The content is differed but both have offensive sexual elements to them.
“I am not suggesting that they now need to go to prison for four years. It is the issue of the suspension.
“Would I have done so had I appreciated their true views and what they really thought of the court proceedings?” really believed their contrition was real? Good grief!
Judge Lunt allowed both defence barristers seven days to get the full transcript of the last court case before she makes a decision.
Shouldn't they already have these to hand?

H/T: CJ Nerd via email

Saturday, 23 April 2016

No, Of Course It's Not Because You're A SJW....

....perish the thought:

Originally every player appeared in game as a white bald guy. We were still in the early stages of development and had other things to focus on. Recently, though, we decided to change this. We decided that we didn’t want players to pick their own appearance. We felt that player customisation had got a bit out of control in other games. And we didn’t want to spend six months making a player customisation tool – we wanted to concentrate on the game. We also wanted the appearance of the players to be consistent over time. A survivor shouldn’t be able to attack another then come back later with a different gender or race and befriend the same player. They should be recognisable consistently and long-term – so anyone likely to commit a crime would be more likely to wear a balaclava or a face mask.
So you could have opted to make your characters aliens. Or monsters. But no, you wanted human protagonists. came to this conclusion? And now you're upset that others have called you out on it?
Inevitably, there are people who like it and people who don’t. Some players have praised what we’re doing. Like us, they think that who you are in the game, your race and gender, makes no difference to the actual gameplay – and are happy to have the diversity. Others aren’t so positive. They feel that playing a gender or race that doesn’t match their own is detrimental to their enjoyment.
And it seems you've calculated that there's not enough of the latter that you can afford to piss them off. Hmmm. Not sure I'd make that call, but it's your company.
Here’s one of the many messages we’ve received from disgruntled male players: “Why won’t you give the player base an option to choose their gender? I just want to play the game and have a connection to the character like most other games I play. Not have some political movement shoved down my throat because you make the connection we can’t choose our gender in reality so let’s make it like that in game too.”
Sounds like a fair cop to me! But no, no. Of course, it's all about the gameplay. Isn't it?
Ultimately the decision comes down to gameplay. We don’t believe that letting you choose your race and gender would improve the game. On the other hand, randomising everyone’s gender and race meets all our requirements. We get an even spread of races and genders that make players more identifiable – while at the same time making the social aspects of the game much more interesting.
Note the emphasis: we, ours. Sod the customer, they'll do it our way, or the highway!

Which may well prove to be your undoing. See, I prefer - given the option - to create a female avatar. But, if the game's good enough, has a rich enough story, have no problems playing as Takkar, or Geralt of Rivia, or Gabriel Knight. Just as plenty of chaps have no problem playing Lara Croft.

But survival games are ten a penny these days. Why should I not simply play someone else's game instead?

Oh, The Angst!

Quite the funniest article in the ‘Guardian’ is often the anguished wrangling over language and policy that crops up from the editor:
Something of a theme has emerged in recent Open Door columns, which have looked at the way in which the Guardian describes minority groups, and furthermore what members of those groups think of that language.
Because no-one at the ‘Guardian’ can see any issues arising out of giving over control of language to the perpetually aggrieved…
One error that seems ever more important to correct in the light of the debate about the age at which state pensions are to be paid is the misuse of the word “elderly” .
Quite! 60 is the new 40, and all that.
As well as exercising caution around language, journalists increasingly have to be sensitive to the needs of readers who are affected by the issues being reported on or discussed.
On 3 February the Guardian published a story on its website with the headline “Man suspected of killing estranged wife had been jailed for assaulting her”. It gave some background to a tragic story about a man who was found dead after his wife and two children had been murdered. … It is now our standard practice when a story involves suicide to print contact details for the Samaritans in a footnote, as we did on this occasion.
Oh, your heart just melts at the bafflement that lurks unmentioned here, doesn’t it? Pity the poor ‘Guardian’ writer, following the guidelines faithfully, unaware of the lurking danger:
Several readers were puzzled by the decision: “I was surprised to see, at the end of your report on the identification of Geraldine Newman’s estranged husband as the murderer of her and her two children, a link to the Samaritans. I do understand there being an editorial policy in place that requires this to follow any article dealing with a suicide, but when reporting the case of a man previously convicted of assaulting his wife going on to kill her, their children and later himself, it seems misplaced. Perhaps a link to Women’s Aid and similar organisations internationally would have been more appropriate? It strikes me that the Guardian is recognising the wrong victim here.”
I am sure that no judgment was intended, but I understand the points made by these readers. I don’t think one set of contact details should be dropped for another, as there may well be people who would benefit from counselling or help in all of these circumstances. On this occasion two sets of contact details would be the answer – at least on the web where there is the space.
But it is an ethical consideration that even five years ago I am sure most journalists would not have expected to encounter.
Hahahahahahahahahahahaha! You sowed the wind, now reap that whirlwind!

Friday, 22 April 2016

Well, At Least You Aren't Ruling Out Any Options...

Burnley Magistrates Court heard how Alltree, of Eagle Street, Nelson, went in to a rage after Mr Williams had stopped him entering a roundabout by putting on the combined breaks (sic) during the test which started at 8am on February 9.
When Alltree realised it meant he had failed his test and words were exchanged between the defendant and Williams before the examiner asked him to pull up at the side of the road, the court heard. Alltree got out of the car, slamming the door and shouted at Mr Williams: "You would not have done that if you knew who I was."
Driving instructor Kenneth Spencer, who had been sat in the back of the car, got out to try and calm Alltree down. But magistrates were told Alltree shouted: "All I have to do is make one phone call and you are both dead. I will kill you."
Just an everyday story of Lancashire folk...
Prosecuting, Tracy Yates said Alltree banged on the car and carried on driving expletives (sic) and when Mr Williams drove off back towards the driving test centre, leaving the defendant on the roadside. But Alltree chased after the car continuing to shout abuse.
At 8.50am Mr Williams and Mr Spencer heard knocking at the door of the test centre in Cobden Street. Colleagues noticed it was Alltree, who had walked back, and called the police.
 Wow. Mitigation is going to be....

....well, it's probably going to be the usual stuff, isn't it?
Defending, Graeme Parkinson said his client had anger management issues and also suffered from ADHD and dyslexia.
Yup. Thought so.
He said his client accepts he had handled the situation badly but chased after the car and went to the test centre to retrieve his provisional licence which he was fearful of losing.
"But he said it wasn't until later he realised it had been in his jacket pocket throughout.
He said his client did not recall using any expletives but accepts he probably did.
Dare I ask if it's his first offence?
Alltree, who is unemployed and cares full-time for his partner, has nine previous convictions for offences including assault, disorderly behaviour and dishonesty.
The case was adjourned until April 25 for a pre-sentence report and Alltree was given unconditional bail.
The chairman of magistrates Mr Creelman said: "We have listened to carefully to what everybody has said and we take on board everything that we have heard, including your condition. This was clearly very shocking for the examiner.
"We are not ruling out any options when it comes to sentencing you."
Bet you're ruling out the one I'd prefer.

I'll Save You The Trouble Of 'An Investigation'...

Lambeth council confirmed Mr Armstrong’s fine had been cancelled after the authority was contacted by the Evening Standard.
A spokeswoman said: “We’ll cancel the fixed penalty notice and are investigating why there was some confusion around the marking of the disabled bays.”'s because you hire incompetent cretins simply because they tick a box on someone's Diversity Scorecard, and can't then sack them.

Thursday, 21 April 2016

Tell Us Again About The Effects Of Those Awful Tory Cuts...

Brighton and Hove City Council is considering digging up the bricks along the King's Road Arches, which reportedly cost £750,000.
The local authority said it follows concerns that they clash with the bricks for the i360's new event space and piazza.

I just don't get to use this image enough, do I?

People Don't, Holly.

Holly told the BBC: ‘You don’t expect to go out and have people treat you like you have no right to exist in public spaces.’
But certain shopkeepers do. And it's always the usual suspects...
When Holly Scott-Gardner, who has been blind since birth, went to PGR in Coventry for her 22nd birthday on Monday, a staff member told her that her dog wasn’t allowed in.
The restaurant’s owner Majed Bahgozen was then called over, and he told her to leave the dog outside, sit outside, or go elsewhere.
They continued to refuse service, despite Holly repeatedly telling them it was against the law to turn her and her dog away.
What are the usual excuses they are proffering?
Initially, Ameena Slaviskus from PGR, who was not there at the time, told the BBC they ‘didn’t know she was blind because she didn’t have a card on her neck’.

But owner Bahgozen later said it was because they weren’t aware of the law regarding guide dogs in the UK.
You're running a business in the UK. So isn't it time that the council visited to find out what other regulations you're unaware of?

H/T: wiggia via email

Wednesday, 20 April 2016

Have You Never Heard The Expression 'Beggars Can't Be Choosers' Then?

Ms Waghorne said: “We got a letter on March 3 saying that the landlord wanted the property back by March 6.
“They then wanted to put me and my daughter in a one bedroom flat miles away.
“I drove round the area and it was vile, there were people standing around in corners, dirty needles on the floor.
“I was prepared to accept it for a few days, then my sister phoned the council and said she wasn’t happy with that.”
Yes, well. Everyone can see you have exacting standards.

 Oh look what I found!

Why The Secrecy?

Gordon Dickie’s four-year-old West Highland terrier Poppy is on a cocktail of painkillers following the mauling. Poppy will be signed off by a vet on Friday but it will be two months before her wounds heal after the attack by a Burmese mountain dog.
Mr Dickie’s greyhound/pointer crossbreed Oscar also had both his legs bitten in the attack near Rossie Island at the back of Montrose Basin. Twelve-year-old Oscar was chased and attacked but Mr Dickie’s jack russell Jocky – who is also 12 – escaped relatively unharmed after getting away.
They were lucky. Other dogs – and people – haven’t been.
Mr Dickie, who is retired, said the whole ordeal has left him and his wife Ann extremely upset and disappointed by the lack of police action.
“I read in The Courier that a Siberian husky owner was prosecuted by the court after killing 20 chickens near Forfar,” said Mr Dickie.
“What’s the difference between chickens and dogs? “I think the police should be taking this further – my dogs could have been killed.”
Maybe they will take it seriously if someone posts something on social media?

Or if they can chase the landlord for possible H&S breaches?
Mr Dickie said the police told him that it was not a case for them but for the dog warden in Angus. He said the dog warden has spoken to the owner of the animal responsible for the attack and was told precautions have been taken to ensure it will not happen again.
However, Mr Dickie said he was told the precautions have been kept “confidential” – something he thinks is “a nonsense”.
Well, quite! If he encounters this beast again, he’s entitled to know what precautions the owner is supposed to have undertaken. How else can he be sure that the dog warden’s advice is being complied with?
An Angus Council spokesman said: “Each incident is dealt with according to its own particular circumstances and, on this occasion, it is not appropriate to disclose further information.”
Owned by a council bigwig, is it?

Tuesday, 19 April 2016

What Are Your Tube Staff Being Taught?

The passenger was seen to “surf” the middle rail of the downward escalator at North Greenwich Underground Station yesterday morning before clattering into a smartly dressed woman in her seventies. She was left lying face down on the floor while the younger woman suffered a deep gash to her wrist and hand and was taken to hospital by ambulance.
British Transport Police are investigating the incident which happened just after 7am.
It’s lucky they are, because if it was up to the Tube worker who attended, they wouldn’t be:
Paul Wolverton, 52, said: “She sent the older women flying to her knees, the escalator was stopped and the older lady was at the bottom of the escalator on all fours and could not get up she was badly hurt.
“The younger girl was crying because she had injured her hand and wrist and was bleeding, she was being comforted by her friends.
“There was an Underground worker standing over the women who could not get up.
“She was trying to calm the situation down because an eyewitness had seen what had happened and were saying that the young woman should be arrested, but the guard was saying it was an accident.”
How on earth she possibly come to that conclusion? Particularly given it’s something that TfL warn against:
TfL confirmed the incident took place. A spokeswoman added: “Safety is our top priority and pranks like this are dangerous for not only those involved but also to other customers.
“We have frequent PA announcements reminding customers to be careful when using escalators, and we also run safety campaigns throughout the year to encourage customers to take care whilst traveling on our network.”
Someone needs to be recalled for retraining.

Things To Look Forward To In 2017...

AMC has greenlit Dan Simmons’ novel The Terror as a 10-episode anthology series, with plans to release the series in 2017.
This is excellent news! One of my favourite books, and I saw the memorial to the Franklin Expedition last year, when I visited Greenwich.

So long as they do it justice.

Monday, 18 April 2016

Where’s The Health & Safety Executive When You Need Them?

Picture the scene: I run a small zoo. I need a tiger moved from one cage to another.

Do I…

a) …arrange for a series of interlocking cages, or one secure box, to transport the animal safely and with minimal human contact, or
b) …give the zookeeper a rope leash and a piece of meat and ask him to persuade or manhandle this dangerous animal out of one cage and into another?

If b) then I’d expect the HSE to come down on me like a ton of bricks when my zookeeper is mauled to death. They’d be right.
Mr Burke had been "unpredictable" at previous hearings, the Old Bailey heard. Opening the trial, prosecutor Duncan Penny QC said Mr Burke had previously pretended to faint, collapse and go limp at court hearings.
Mrs Barwell had handcuffed herself to the defendant, which is standard procedure, when he collapsed to the ground. Three male officers tried to get him on his feet but he began to struggle and was restrained and handcuffed behind his back, the court heard.
Mr Penny said: "As he was standing up, the defendant was bent forward whilst Lorraine Barwell was standing in front of him attempting to control his head.
"He then appears to have lunged forwards and managed to kick out twice towards Lorraine Barwell.
"He seems to have kicked at her twice, the latter kick connecting with her head."
She died in hospital from a brain haemorrhage two days later.
So why are we treating the potentially dangerously mentally ill like human beings, capable of rational thought and self control, and not like dangerous wild beasts?

Is the ‘dignity’ of this man worth a human life? It would seem that the State thinks it is.

Why Can’t The Defence Barrister Get Done For Contempt Of Court?

Appearing for sentencing at Wrexham Magistrates Court on Monday, Davies wept through the hearing.
She had previously pleaded guilty to being in charge of a dog dangerously out of control.
Ah, yes, tears are always good strategy! Did anyone check her for a concealed onion?
Emma Simoes, defending, said Davies was very remorseful about the attack. “This is a lady whose life revolves around animals. She is distraught and very concerned Blake will be put down and she will be disqualified from having any other pets.
“She had Blake for six years and this was an isolated incident.
“The lead snapped and rather than going back to get another, she thought she would be able to control him.”
Right, so she was very remorseful and waited at the scene until the police came to…

Helen Tench, prosecuting, told the court police were called and eventually located Davies and her dog.
OK. But it was an isolated incident and the dog had never attacked befo…

In a victim impact statement read out before the court, she added: “I was so upset Digger had been killed. I was shaking with the trauma.
“This was not the first time Blake had attacked him.“
Isn’t it time ‘contempt of court’ was extended to barristers spinning the courts a pack of easily-disproven lies..?

Saturday, 16 April 2016

Looks Like The Democrats Have Lost Control Of Their Creation..

Steven Thrasher confides in the CiF reader:
I’ll admit it: I’m prejudiced.
Whenever I see a conflict between a gutsy protester who is trying to show how black lives matter by interrupting a powerful white politician who has a microphone, I’m always going to be rooting for the protester.
Well, I.... I never would have guessed! You hide it so well.
“Can I answer?” He asked the screaming crowd. “Here’s the thing, I like protesters. But the ones who won’t let you answer are afraid of the truth.”
Good for Bill! And who'd ever have thought I'd say that?
He bragged about adding police to the streets, making a case not for black liberation but for increased black surveillance, and he actually equated the Black Lives Matter activists to obstructionist Republicans in Congress.
That....that monster!
Then, he went nuclear: “I’ll tell you another story about a place where black lives matter: Africa,” before telling a charming tale about his white wife’s good deeds for dark-skinned folks. (Subtext: if y’all Negroes don’t like it here, go back to where you came from – and wait for Hillary to save you there if you’re lucky.)
It's amazing how you can spot the hidden racism in everything, Steven. It's a gift.
He was also happy to throw black people from the 1990s under the bus: “I don’t know how you would characterize the gang leaders who got 13-year-old kids hopped up on crack and sent them out into the street to murder other African American children. Maybe you thought they were good citizens – she didn’t.” This goes to the heart of the concerns of the Black Lives Matter movement, which ignited with the death of Mike Brown – “no angel” to the New York Times, but beloved by a new generation who see beyond the racist spin.
Yup. Loathing the people that prey on their own kind is so bourgeois, isn't it? In such enlightened times, championing the right for your fellows to sell drugs to your kids unmolested by the law is key to success for your movement, clearly.
Black Lives Matter is not interested in a world where black children must be made “to heel” and where fear-mongering is achieved by mentioning the racist trope of “13-year-old kids hopped up on crack”.
Yeah! Your people deserve to act like animals and never be called on it by .... well, anyone! Even America's 'first black President'.
To me, this movement demands a reimagining of American society – thinking not in terms of how to punish a black child in a gang, but of how to undo what has kept black people from having equal access to education, employment, wealth and opportunity in the first place, so that our families and communities aren’t destroyed and so we don’t literally lead shorter lives.
Who knew that the modern day US was like 1960s South Africa? Well, Steven knew. Obviously.
All hail the protesters, who keep forcing the conversation with cowards who’d be happy to get back into the White House without wrestling with the ongoing scourge of structural racism.
Wait, has this overtaken 'institutional racism' now?

I See You’ve Drawn The Obvious Conclusion From This…

New research into our own comment threads provides the first quantitative evidence for what female journalists have long suspected: that articles written by women attract more abuse and dismissive trolling than those written by men, regardless of what the article is about. Although the majority of our regular opinion writers are white men, we found that those who experienced the highest levels of abuse and dismissive trolling were not.
The 10 regular writers who got the most abuse were eight women (four white and four non-white) and two black men. Two of the women and one of the men were gay. And of the eight women in the “top 10”, one was Muslim and one Jewish.
And the 10 regular writers who got the least abuse? All men.
Maybe, just maybe, they drew this ‘abuse and dismissive trolling’ (which is often just the moderator’s terms for inconvenient facts that disprove the OP’s theory) because they are just no good at expressing themselves, or are demanding impossible things?

In fact, it’s possible that they were only picked to write for CiF in the first place because they ticked a diversity box, and not because their writing is any good, isn’t it?

But no, I’m sure you’re right, and it’s because your readers are all bigots…

Longrider is of the same opinion, I see:
"And let’s be clear here, the Guardian is a hotbed of misandry and racism. Telling them that will get you moderated. Their gaff, their rules of course, but everyone can see it for what it is, though."
Indeed they can.

Friday, 15 April 2016

Clearly, You Don’t Know Animals Other Than Cows & Sheep..

Littlefair was ordered to have the dog destroyed, fined £350 and ordered to pay £500 compensation to Mrs Taylor and £100 to Mr O’Hare. He was also ordered to pay £85 costs and a £38 surcharge.
He said losing his pet and people being injured has been very upsetting.
The councillor said: “It came as a huge shock to everyone who had met the dog that it had attacked.
I am a farmer, I know animals and this dog had never shown any aggression.
“But, I have to take their word for it they were attacked.”
You have to take their word for it? So…you weren’t present? The dog was out of your immediate control?

Whoops! Quite an admission…

That’s Not Going To Help With The Council Cash Flow, Is It?

The building has been empty for several months since the art gallery closed.
Westhoughton town councillor David Wilkinson said: “Most residents who contacted me about this were opposed to the idea of yet another takeaway on Market Street but others were supportive of having a genuine restaurant.”
The line between ‘filthy takeaway’ and ‘genuine restaurant’ is often pretty close.
Bolton Council planning officers turned down the plans to convert the former art gallery over fears that the takeaway was too close to Westhoughton High School.
It was feared the food outlet would encourage unhealthy eating among youngsters as guidance recommends that hot food takeaways within 400 metres of secondary schools should not be given permission.
Given that Market Street is already thick with pizza places, Indian takeaways, chip shops and the like, it’s really hard to see how one more is going to somehow tip the balance between a school full of lithe striplings vs a school full of porkers…

Thursday, 14 April 2016

As A Regular Bootsaler, I Have To Say ‘Wha..?’

A large fight broke out at the event in Staines Road, Hounslow, on February 28, in which one man was reportedly stabbed and another sustained a broken leg.
Police said the brawl had been sparked by a row over power tools, prompting the organiser of the car boot sale to agree to stop the sale of them at further events.
It seems that this might have been after prompting from yes, none other than police:
Inspector Jonathan Shard, from Hounslow police, told GetWestLondon the tools were “no longer accepted for sale as they were the driver for the attendance of the groups involved in the fight”.
I note you aren’t naming these ‘groups’.
He added: “The manager of the car boot sales have agreed a ban, which is advertised at the entrance to the site.”
Hmmm, yes.

I see the same sort of signs up at the boot sales I attend. ‘No counterfeit goods!’ they proclaim, to which I always chuckle ‘Oh, yes, there are!’…

Silly, Silly Boy....

A 14-year-old boy from Brighton, who was taken to hospital with a stab wound to his stomach, has admitted making up a story about being attacked.
The lad suffered the wound while messing around with a knife in a play fight with a friend in Kemp Town. He accidentally stabbed himself.
Detective Sergeant Chris Lane said: “We were appealing for witnesses to the attack and the incident caused some concern in the community at the time. The boy will now be dealt with for wasting police time.”
Everyone knows you lie about rape, not stabbing. Then the police are likely to treat you as a victim.

Wednesday, 13 April 2016

I Think You Tranquillised The Wrong Out Of Control Bitch…

A “drunken” women was said to have goaded a large French mastiff dog to turn on the police when armed officers were called to reports it had tried to attack a man in a Burnley street.
They should have shot it. And Gorrie.
The court was told the animal, a rescue dog, was being fostered by Wendy Ann Gorrie (44) who refused police instructions to control it.
Gorrie claims she had had a fall-out with neighbours and the dog had reacted and been protective because it thought she was under threat. She was arrested for being drunk and disorderly during the incident.
But they didn’t shoot it.
The dog was eventually tranquillised by a police vet (Ed: wtf..?) and taken to kennels. It will not be put down as its owner Lee Nuttall was said by police to be a diligent owner. Officers did not request a destruction order.
A diligent owner doesn’t let a drunken chav ‘foster’ his dog.
The defendant, who is on benefits, was fined £80, with £85 costs and a £20 victim surcharge. She was not banned from keeping or owning dogs.
Well, won’t the fact that she’s on benefits mean she can’t afford to..? *innocent face*

Regulation, Keeping Us All Safe!

In a report to Mrs Yeribu, a panel spokesman said: "There was a clear risk of death to the patient arising from your actions.
"Your actions in using scissors on a Tesio line were serious and it was clear that by using scissors there was the potential to cut the line.
"Your actions brought the nursing profession into serious disrepute. They would be deplored by nursing and other professionals and be found shocking to the general public.
"You were in breach of the fundamental tenets of the nursing profession in failing to provide a high standard of care to your patient.”
A Basildon Hospital spokesman said Mrs Yeribu, an agency nurse, has not worked at the trust since the incident, in June 2014.
Note the weasel words ‘at the trust’.

Because as the comments show, she’s working somewhere:
Owlz Hmmmm but Patricia Yeribu-tsikata (full name) has set up her own nursing business and is still practicing as a nurse as her Facebook page (in uniform) and companies house show.... http://www.companies

Tuesday, 12 April 2016

Ahh, Family Values…

Blackburn magistrates heard Yasin Hussain Shah punched his mum in the face before grabbing her around the throat.
He later told a female police officer: "I was only pushing her around, slapping her around, taking over from my dad. Either way she deserved a slap, you all do don't you."
He then made some vile sexual remarks about his mother.
Shah, of Pine Street, Blackburn, pleaded guilty to assaulting Kaneez Shah. He was jailed for 10 weeks and made subject to a restraining order which bans him from any contact with her for 12 months.
So he’ll be out in time for next Mother’s Day…

Oh, If Only Changing This Was Within Your Power…

A Sidcup woman fears for her children’s safety after her son found a bag of cannabis on their balcony.
Rebecca Fry, 26, of Highview Road, was stunned when her four-year-old son George walked in with the Class B drug on Sunday (March 20) - and wants to move out of her ‘scary’ flat as soon as possible. She thinks the drugs were accidentally dropped from an above flat and has reported the issue to police and her housing association Riverside.
Ms Fry is not letting George and 13-month-old Lilly play in the communal garden because she is too frightened that they might pick up more inappropriate items.
Oh, how awful!
Ms Fry moved into her flat in December 2013 and has also had problems with neighbours who have allegedly kept her son up at night with their “screaming and shouting”. She claims to have once found drugs in the lift of her block of flats but failed to report it as she did not want to get involved.
The stay-at-home mum never smokes and only drinks alcohol when she is not around her children.
And…what does that have to do with the price of fish?
Now, she is urging Riverside to move her family to a safer community.
Ms Fry said: “I want Riverside to move me to keep my children safe.
“Somewhere where I’m not worried and surrounded by drugs and have normal people around me.
“Either the druggies are moved or I am – it has to happen.
“My family just want a normal place to live – that’s all we’re asking for because every day is a battle.”
Well, love, you could always have waited to have children when you were financially secure. If you’re going to demand that the taxpayer house you, you’ll go where it’s cheapest to put you.

Want a nice house, in a nice area? Then work for it.

Monday, 11 April 2016

Would You Like Another Big Helping Of Consequences?

Caffe Nero will no longer provide its staff with a free lunch while on shift following the introduction of the new National Living Wage.
 Well, that's a turn up for the books! Gosh. Who could have predicted this?
The company said the change in wages, which came into force on 1 April, will have a “significant financial impact of the business” and they are therefore looking into new ways to cut down on costs.
 *munches popcorn*

Oh. Sorry. That was a bit insensitive...
...staff told BBC Newsbeat their food choices were now being restricted.
No they aren't. You can eat whatever you want. It's just that now, you have to pay for it.
One claimed: "Before the National Living Wage increase we were allowed to order whatever we wanted off the menu.
"Now we're only allowed to order a plain margherita or a plain cheese and tomato pasta. Any additional toppings we have to pay for at cost price.
"The staff don't seem to be very happy about it as it was one of the benefits of working there."
But other people thought that they knew best. They thought that the benefit of working there should be a 'living wage'. They thought that companies - which exist to make a profit, after all - would swallow the cost.

They were wrong. As anyone with half a brain could have told them.

The Excuses Are Getting Worse…

A father-of-four claimed the astronomical cost of living in Kingston turned him to drug dealing, before he was sentenced to a year in prison for supplying cannabis.
Not only that, but while on bail, he was arrested AGAIN for the same offence…
He came to the UK from Iran in 1999 and lived in Dover for more than 10 years before moving to New Malden.
And what does he do for a living (besides drug dealing)? We aren’t told. Is the answer ‘nothing’?
Defence counsel William Paynter said: “He has described it as a big mistake.
“His daughter was going to go to university in London and the family all decided to move.
“He found the cost of living in London very high, even compared to Dover also in the south east.”
Well, it’s not like that could have been foreseen, is it?
Explaining why Sahami was caught drug dealing a second time, Mr Paynter added: “It is an unfortunate feature of the case.
“He is someone with very little connection with the criminal justice system.
“While this was a matter committed on bail he may not have understood as well as someone who was born and raised in Britain would.”
He’s been here for fifteen years. He didn’t just get off the boat yesterday.

Sunday, 10 April 2016

Disney's Upping Their Game....

...but they might be going a little too far in their quest for verisimilitude!

I'd Give This One A Miss If I Were You... doesn't sound like a good place to stay:

Is it twinned with the Heartbreak Hotel?

The good old 'Galloway Gazette' again, bless its little cotton socks...

H/T: Stephen Guy via email

Sunday Funnies...

And you thought your job sucked...

Saturday, 9 April 2016

I Have My Problems With The Film...

,,,but this ain't one of 'em!
Disney is bringing back The Jungle Book in a live-action remake, but worries over racial stereotyping that plagued the 1967 cartoon original are already making critics fret.
...both Kipling’s book, which was written from a British colonialist perspective, and Disney’s animated adaptation have long been criticised for their racist overtones, and critics warn that it will take more than talking animals and other visual effects to avoid offence.
They should be offended by the somewhat odd appearance of some of the animals, not to mention an orangutan in the Indian jungle (and one about the size of King Kong, judging by the trailers!) and the fact that Baloo would be a sloth bear, not whatever that's supposed to be...

This has long been a favorite book of mine, and I guess I'm going to get my wish (back in 2012) to see what modern CGI can do. And it's good, but there's something about the way the CGI animals talk that makes me uneasy.
“The first Disney Jungle Book was based on Kipling; the next one will be based on the movie, so it’ll be another generation removed from Kipling, which will help,” Robert Thompson, professor of television and popular culture at Syracuse University, told Yahoo Movies.
It won't help, it'll hinder. Why not do the book justice at last? Because of fears of just this sort of knee jerk reaction, I suppose.
On the film’s release, the character of King Louie was widely criticised for connoting inequality between African-Americans and Caucasians.
 God, if I roll my eyes any harder, I think they might fall out...
Disney should perhaps have steered clear, said the Christian Science Monitor, in a damning piece following the announcement of plans to make the movie two years ago. “Why bother with this morass when there are so many other books to choose from that are as yet undiscovered by the Disney audience? Disney can afford fresher fare than a rehash of a film that will have to be so deconstructed from the original into an unrecognisable hash in order to succeed.”
And if this one is getting savaged even before release, I fear for the (presumably more closely tied to the book) version that Warner Brothers will be releasing next year.

Suffer The Little Children Sixth Form Students!

Orli Vogt-Vincent (a 16-year-old student and writer) wails ‘S’not faaaaaaiiiirrrrr!’
I don’t know of a single fellow GCSE pupil that goes to bed earlier than 10pm any more. Coursework, coloured flashcards and compiled organisation for maybe 11 or 12 subjects – if I’m under the covers by midnight, I’ll be surprised and pleased. But if you think that’s bad, it’s about to get a whole lot worse. George Osborne announced in his 2016 budget that the days of schools ending at 3.30pm are over, and that a £1.5bn package of funding will be put into lengthening the school day and making all schools into privately run academies in England.
Are you sure it’s schoolwork keeping you up, Orli, and not writing competitions?
One of the greatest flaws in human nature – especially exemplified by this government – is finding irrelevant factors to blame instead of addressing what’s really going on. If we truly have £1.6bn to spend on education, why not focus on the real problems that causes the UK to be 20th on the global education league tables? It’s not that we need more time in school – it’s the outrageous workloads of teachers and staff shortages; it’s the lack of teaching and focus on paperwork; it’s the targets and assessments; the criteria and mark schemes that cause young people to feel under immense pressure.
Oh, the poor little dears! *rummages around for tiny violin*
Adding mental and physical exhaustion to the list of ailments affecting today’s stress-infused teenagers is a terrible breach of Osborne’s power.
Yes, he’s doing it because he’s a big meanie, Orli…
It’s claimed that these reforms will give children the best start in life. But let’s take a quick look at Finland, rated sixth on the national league tables. Finland has a focus on learning rather than testing, with no real exams until about 17, no league tables, and crucially the least number of hours in class in the developed world.
OK, you’ve convinced me. Let’s ship you and your chums out to Finland.
Osborne can change the timetable, but he can’t change the attitudes. Nothing productive can be achieved by burned-out pupils at 5pm.
You don’t seem to be doing so badly, do you?

Friday, 8 April 2016

Are You Sure The Terrier Didn’t Just Fall Down The Cell Steps..?

Heather Roach, deputy chief constable said the investigation culminated in a decision being made that Falco should be euthanised and this has now been carried out.
She said: "This was an incredibly tough decision to make given the nature of the circumstances and the fact that our dog handlers care a great deal about their dogs, as we do as a force.
"As difficult as it was to take this action, which was carried out with very heavy hearts, it was decided that the best course was to euthanise Falco to ensure this type of incident never happens again.
"An IPCC investigation is still underway so we are limited in what we can say in relation to the exact circumstances until those enquiries have been completed."
Professional Standards Department must be wishing it had this sort of power to act in other cases...


As the junior doctor's strike got under way yesterday, one revealed the awful conditions these brave souls are struggling with in a heartless Tory world...

Monsters, they are. Monsters, I tell you....

Thursday, 7 April 2016

But It's What The 'Guardian' Helped Teach Them, Ellen...

This, along with accounts of incessant loud booing in theatres, appears to be a sign of changing times. It’s not so much that everyone is a critic, rather that everyone is such a bad, incompetent critic, the kind of critic who is too impatient and lazy to fashion a proper critique so resorts to boorish disruption instead.
Gosh! I wonder where they could have learned such impulsive and sloppy critiquing?
I would have thought that, if you don’t like a play, you’d quietly leave, maybe ask for your money back, and fair enough. However, now there seems to be a new breed of uber-consumers who “know their rights” and (here’s a crucial shift) won’t sit passively as mere audience members but rather demand “equal billing” just for their reactions. In short, it’s the era of the self-sanctified right to reply as an instant dominant force that cannot be silenced or pacified.
Remind me again, what's the name of this publication you're writing for, Barbara?
While audiences are an integral part of the theatre experience, this doesn’t give individuals the right to throw tantrums, like tyrannical children, ruining the experience for everybody else. After all, when the media likes of me wish to spout ill-informed, unsubstantiated, semi-literate opinions, we usually wait until we get home. This kind of disruption (swearing, booing) seems beyond good, honest audience participation – it’s crude cultural vandalism. While performers often stand accused of being precious and over-entitled, it’s increasingly the hecklers who are displaying these self-aggrandising traits and we allow these situations to become the norm at our peril.
This rag helped to encourage the very strident virtue signalling behaviour it now decries. YCMIU, could you?

The Only Unusual Thing Is The Type Of Bull Terrier…

The court heard how Billy attacked Mr Thompson at Showpa Plastics factory, Landywood Lane, Cheslyn Hay when the dog escaped.
The dog pulled off his glove then went on to bite his stomach, left calf, left buttock and chest. At the court yesterday, magistrates ordered Humpage to pay £5,000 in compensation to the victim, along with an £80 victim surcharge and £185 costs to the prosecution.
He must also carry out 200 hours of unpaid work.
A destruction order was placed on Billy and a control order on Saskia with conditions that she be on a lead no longer than 1.5 metres when out in public and that she be muzzled.
Wonders will never cease! Not a Staffie this time, or a pitbull, despite being owned by a man who looks like the personification of stocky inbred aggressiveness – these were English bull terriers.
Miss Sarb Sehmi, defending Humpage, who is a father of three girls, aged 10, 11 and 16, said that the attack had ‘absolutely devastated’ her client.
Yeah. I’m sure. He looks the sensitive type…

Wednesday, 6 April 2016

Well Played, CiF Commenters...

Ian Jack's curmudgeonly whinge about naming inanimate objects goes a bit wrong...

Bur the commenters are quick to put him right:

Well played, well played indeed.

“Why Wait For The Facts? My Hobbyhorse Needs A Gallop NOW!!”

Independent borough and Essex County councillor Mr Smith said there should be no right turn for vehicles exiting the BP Garage on Nevermayne (sic).
He continued: “Of course, we don’t know the ins and outs of what happening during this tragic crash.
“But for people coming out of the garage it can be extremely dangerous going across traffic to get in the correct lane.
“Taking that measure is the least that should be done.”
The accident involved a car turning right out of the garage, then? Well, no. It seems it was two people crossing the road.
Gavin Callaghan, Labour councillor and leader of the opposition said accidents are inevitable until Essex County Council makes serious changes. He continued: “It’s no coincidence these sad fatalities have occurred.
“You have four busy junctions and they are all fast roads.
“Speed limits on the connecting roads needs to be reduced considerably to slow down traffic approaching the roundabout.”
The accident involved a car speeding then? Well, no. There’s no indication of this in any of the articles.

But any excuse to get your name in the papers, eh, lads?

Tuesday, 5 April 2016

“Well, We’ve Spent All Our Money On Rainbow Flags…”

“…we could put one of those on it if it helps?”
Residents claim the huge crevice in Possingworth Lane, near the B2192 at Blackboys, has been growing for months since it was first reported to East Sussex County Council in December.
Measuring approximately 15 inches deep, 5ft wide and 10ft long, the hole was masked by a large flood. The Argus contacted the council on Wednesday after residents' complaints and that evening a council highways inspection van was seen stranded in the pothole and being rescued by roadside recovery.
Ahahahahahaha! You couldn’t make it up, could you?
Retired criminal barrister Clemency Abraham, a 47-year-old mother-of-three who lives nearby, said: "When I was bringing my children home at about 7.30pm I saw the van had come down to see the road and was stranded in the giant hole. The recovery took several hours. The driver was very shocked by the state of the road and kept saying he couldn’t believe it was this bad and no-one had told him.
"This is a dangerous accident waiting to happen and it makes it very difficult - this is the main route in to these rural settlements."
So, what did the council have to say?
The council cleared the flood water and a blocked drain on Thursday and put barriers, bollards and temporary traffic lights in the road. A spokeswoman said repair work would be carried out as soon as possible but could not confirm when it would begin or be completed.
Is it likely to be before it reaches the centre of the earth?
She said: "Every report we receive is acted upon as quickly as possible but we don’t have unlimited resources so we have to prioritise the repairs to ensure we fix the worst potholes on the busiest roads first. The pothole in Possingworth Lane was first reported in December, but was assessed as low priority at that time."
Funny. Those ‘limited resources’ don’t seem to prevent Brighton Council spending billions on every politically-correct fad and identity politics jolly that comes its way.

Good For You, Tom Hodgkinson

You’ve taught the hipsters and anti-capitalists a valuable lesson about economics:
Artists need to get paid, they shouldn’t work for free and we are a micro-business. We have our own staff and costs that need to be met.
“People who can afford it will pay the £20 and those such as students and artists can pay half-price which I think is fair.”
*wipes away tears of mirth*

Monday, 4 April 2016

I Foresee The Same Rise In Autism As We’ve Seen In ADHD…

Two autism charities have released an open letter signed by more than 7,000 people calling for all teachers in England to be trained in autism, saying that without this children with autism risk being misunderstood and marginalised.
Yet more stuff teachers need to be trained in.

Remember when they were just expected to know how to impart knowledge?
Mark Lever, the chief executive of the NAS, said thousands of autistic children were being disadvantaged every year.
He said: “This is one of the reasons that children on the autism spectrum are four times more likely to be excluded than those without special educational needs.”
If their behaviour is such that they need to be excluded, does it matter what label they wear while doing so?
He continued: “We don’t expect teachers to be experts in autism. But a basic knowledge of the lifelong disability and where to go for extra help would make a huge difference to their students.
“For instance, many children on the autism spectrum are so sensitive to light or sound that an overhead light or humming computer can be physically painful and make it almost impossible to follow a lesson. Simple changes, like to the seating arrangement so the student is away from the light or letting them wear ear defenders, can make a huge difference.”
How are they supposed to hear lessons? Or fire alarms, for that matter?

But expect the rise in ‘autism’ to continue, once the benefit classes realise it’s a bona fide excuse for all sorts of misbehaviour.

Perhaps Someone Should Be Checking Her Benefits?

This was the shocking moment a thug punched a woman in the face in a row over parking.
The 49-year-old, who suffers from multiple sclerosis, was knocked to the ground with one blow in the vicious attack in Hornchurch, east London. Police said her jaw was broken in four places.
Awful! What monsters! What’s the world coming to?
CCTV footage captured by security cameras outside her business on Ardleigh Green Road recorded the entire encounter.
It shows two men pull up outside the pair's cleaning supplies store in a dark-coloured hatchback. Ms Smith and her business partner Keith Edwards, 53, who are walking past as they park, turn on their heels and confront the men as they make their way towards the shop.
The row gets increasingly heated and as one of the men attempts to pass Ms Smith she pulls him away by his hoodie.
She then appears to swipe at the back of his head, but misses. The man responds by swinging a fierce blow at her face which sends her tumbling on to the concrete forecourt.
Ah. That rather puts a different light on things, doesn’t it?

Yes, they shouldn’t park there, yes, there's the age old 'a man should never hit a woman' (Really, ladies? In these days of equality?) but it appears she started it, and is now whinging because she came off worse. Using her Victimhood Poker cards of ‘woman’ and ‘disabled’.

So she’s clearly not that disabled if she can start scraps with younger men, is she?

Saturday, 2 April 2016

What, You Want To Quality-Assure My Work!?

Teacher Tim Paramour says ‘How very dare you! I quit!’:
Since September 2013, I’ve been the deputy head of a large primary school in inner London. The headteacher I work with is fantastic. We have a committed, talented team of staff and governors and the young people I teach are always entertaining. The pay is pretty good. I’ll soon be ready to apply for the top job at a school of my own.
Hurrah! A happy, satisfied teacher – how often do you see this in a major newspap…

Oh. I knew it was too good to be true.
But I’m not going to. In July I’m walking away from the profession that has been my life for more than 12 years and I genuinely don’t know if I’m ever coming back.
Well, what seems to be the issue?
During the last three years of the Labour government, there was a real sense of light at the end of the tunnel. After more than a decade, it felt as if it had finally come to understand primary education. Under the impressive leadership of Ed Balls
*pause for blogger to refrain from laughing hysterically*
… the rebranded Department for Children, School and Families issued edicts that kind of made sense. It ditched what remained of the national strategies which dictated how maths and English should be taught and they commissioned Sir Jim Rose to produce a comprehensive review of the primary curriculum. This suggested that traditional subject divides be replaced with broader areas of learning and stressed the importance of play, particularly for younger pupils. It promoted the development of good speaking and listening skills and the value of nurturing character traits in young people such as resilience and independence, as well as the clear focus on maths and English that already existed. The Rose Review set out a direction of travel which almost everyone that knew about education agreed with. Everyone, that is, apart from the new shadow Education Secretary. And there was an election looming. Enter stage hard right, Michael Gove.
Ah, The Bogeyman!

Here to undo all of Labour’s efforts to turn pupils into Labour-voting mini SJWs, and usher back in a school curriculum designed to teach them how to read, write and add up instead.

Squaresville, man!
But 2012 was the turning point. Ofsted’s obsession with results and the threat of no-notice inspections for schools whose test scores dipped engendered a culture of fear. Terrified by the threat of losing their jobs in an academy takeover, headteachers made more absurd demands of their teachers’ spare time. The Government stepped up the anti-teacher rhetoric in the media as they fought battles with unions over cuts to pensions and the introduction, against all the evidence, of performance-related pay.
Everyone else has performance-related pay. Why shouldn’t teachers?
We used to inspire young people, open their minds to new possibilities and give them a lifelong love of learning. Heaven knows what this strange game we’re now playing is supposed to accomplish. Teaching was once a creative, optimistic, energising job. Not in the Gove-Morgan world of coordinating conjunctions and “formal written methods”.
Fancy expecting results! Fancy expecting some form of distinguishing the best performers from the dross! What do these people think, that teaching is some sort of job or something?!?
Got a passion for music? Primary teaching is not for you. Want to inspire children with drama? Go hug a tree. Think children should learn about their local area? Officially that’s fine (it’s on the meaningless, untested part of the curriculum) but just make sure you link it to grammar objectives because any child that doesn’t understand the grammatical role of the subjunctive mood at the age of 11 will be branded a failure.
Well, they can always go work for a major advertising company, I suppose…
Meanwhile, it seems teachers in most other schools are monitored, examined, scrutinised and graded as though working a 55-hour week for 32 hours’ pay is a special privilege.
I think you’ll struggle to find any traditionally ‘middle-class’ job role now that isn’t ‘monitored, examined, scrutinised and graded’, won’t you? And why should teachers be exempt from this?

Good luck finding a job where you can make stuff up as you go along and no-one ever checks that you’re worth your hire, Tim...

Less ‘Yes, Minister’, More ‘Porridge’…

Rupert McNeil, head of the civil service, brags about his plans:
As I shared in my last blog, one of my priorities is ensuring that the Civil Service is a role-model employer in the UK that welcomes and champions all kinds of diverse groups. I am committed to promoting equality and valuing inclusion
Yeah, yeah. *yawns*
That’s why I am proud that the Civil Service is championing the Ban the Box campaign that aims to provide fairer opportunities for offenders to compete for jobs by encouraging employers to remove the tick box asking about criminal convictions from application forms.
Wait, what? You’re going to blind recruit?
As a senior leader in this organisation, I do recognise that we also have a duty of care to our staff and the members of the public that we serve. The Civil Service will still ask about criminal convictions during the recruitment process, but we will do this after the initial application form stage.
So….you aren’t going to blind-recruit at all. You’re just going to ask them after you’ve done half the work? Does that make sense? I suppose it does if you’re dim.

Like this idiot:
sandra— 12/02/2016 But if someone has a minor conviction going back many years why shouldn't they be given a second chance? I have never had a single conviction, caution etc my entire life, and it was hard enough for me to get a job - so how demoralizing, disheartening and heartbreaking must it be for someone who has wiped the slate clean and wants to start over again?
Oh, where’s my nano-violin. I suppose there’ll be hundreds of her colleaguies eagerly ‘me too-ing’ her to make sure they come across as good little civil service drones who…

Ken Fairbank— 12/02/2016
This motion to 'Ban the Box is totally mis-guided in my view, and an example of the warped sense of equality that seems ever more common in Government circles and elsewhere. When I grew up, you knew that getting a criminal conviction would have a serious affect on your job prospects - it was a deterrent, and one that worked. I agree that this is a dangerous and ill-conceived idea that sends out the worst of messages at a time when we need to be rebuilding a sense of social responsibility, not undermining it further.
Ian Smart— 12/02/2016
I have only just heard of this, there has been no consultation on this. I have been in the civil service 28 years and this is the worst idea I have ever heard of. It is vile. It is an insult to the staff and the public. What is the point of keeping your nose clean, resisting temptation often in difficult and adverse circumstances only to have someone say it does n't matter. I was proud to work in a service that had no one with a CRO number in it, in a contracting service we should be raising the standard not lowering it. And what of the public? Do you want to submit your benefit application or go to the Job Centre and it be a gaol bird examining your case. Do you want to work with these people who could have sold drugs, robbed houses and assaulted people? I don't. I feel both myself and my service has been degraded and I am very angry. What message does this send to kids - it does n't matter if your honest? We are in a recession and when things are difficult criminals should be at the bottom of the pile. Serve them right.
George— 12/02/2016
The proposal to "ban the box" is so palpably ill-conceived that one must seriously question the critical faculties of those who proposed it. The implication is that employers will ask job applicants for details about their previous convictions later on in the recruitment process. If the later revealed conviction(s) results in excluding the applicant from the job, as it would have done had it been revealed at the outset of the application, how can it possibly be argued with any degree of seriousness, that the later disclosure of the conviction benefits either the prospective employee or employer? The employee will suffer the disappointment (and possibly expense) of having their expectations dashed and the employer will have wasted their time processing that applicant; possibly at the expense of other worthwhile job applicants. Real inclusiveness can only be achieved by relaxing the law on previous convictions under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974, under which, and subject to certain exemptions, there would be no requirement to declare previous spent convictions. If the government want to make a real difference to the lives of those who's career/life chances have been blighted because of previous convictions, then amend the legislation rather than proceed with a fudge which is clearly what this is.
Chris P— 12/02/2016
Sandra - both of my sons are law-abiding citizens. I don't see why they should be on a "level playing field" with someone who, as a matter of their own choice, is a thief or a thug. The former jailbirds have made their choice to put themselves above the law and others and there has to be some meaningful consequences for them. It's a about character not "mistakes". Once the general public and press get wind of this then the only outcome can be further reputational damage to the reputation of the service. Sure non-criminals can be disagreeable, and, fact is, I have worked with one or two who have been. But this looks like dogmatic nonsense.
CEO— 12/02/2016
I am perusing this blog with a mixture of bewildered astonishment and pure anger. The whole principle and dialogue surrounding matters of equality has spiralled out of control to almost cosmic levels. I do not consider myself " equal " to a person with a criminal history. I consider myself to be far, far above them. If you want to contradict me in this I'd be delighted and interested to know why.
Well, well, well. It seems that even the workforce can spot the flaws.

Why, then, can’t their oh-so-well-remunerated bosses?