Thursday 30 November 2023

Tweet Of The Month

Post Title Of The Month

Grandad on the latest 'safety' measures proposed for older people:


Quote Of The Month

DumbJon on great form on the Tories chances with Dodgy Dave back in government: 

"There is no more ludicrous myth in British politics than the idea that it's the right of the Tory Party that hobbles the Party's election chances. For all that the squish side of the Party like to talk about electability, they sure do seem to struggle to actually get elected."

Post Of The Month

Bill Sticker samples country living, where the rush hour crowd is even more bovine and recalcitrant than London...

It'd Prove Hard To Deny, Wouldn't It?

I mean...

A pensioner is facing jail after admitting throwing red paint over the Israeli embassy on Armistice Day.
The 75-year-old was arrested outside the embassy by Parliamentary and Diplomatic Protection Command officers after he launched a tin of paint at the building's front gate, covering himself in the process.

Even the Met Police couldn't fail with this one! 

Wednesday 29 November 2023

Well, Despite What BBC Historical Dramas Would Have Us Believe...

...I doubt there were very many of them

The findings have parallels with the Covid pandemic where, early in the crisis, it emerged Black people were four times more likely to die than white people, mainly because they had a higher risk of infection. Such disparities in mortality decreased as the pandemic wore on. “Medieval England was a diverse population and, like today, issues around people’s heritage [and] wealth have health outcomes,” said Dr Rebecca Redfern, a co-author of the research at the Museum of London.

A 'diverse population', eh? OK, I'm not great with numbers, so...what are the numbers, here? 

Writing in the journal Bioarchaeology International, Redfern and colleagues report how they analysed remains from 145 individuals buried at East Smithfield emergency plague cemetery, St Mary Graces and St Mary Spital in London.

145 out of the hundreds of thousands of plague victims, eh? And how many were black? 

Of these, 49 died from plague and 96 died from other causes.The results reveal nine plague victims appeared to be of African heritage, while 40 seemed to have white European or Asian ancestry.

Nine? Well, I might be no better than Diane Abbott at maths-related stuff, but I know a miniscule percentage when I hear one. 

Dr Onyeka Nubia, a historian at the University of Nottingham and author of Blackamoores, about Africans in Tudor England, said for some, it remains a challenge to accept that people of different ancestries and heritage were an established part of England’s past.

No, it's not a challenge at all, what's a challenge is the attempt to make it sound as if a time traveller to medieval London would find it no different to today in terms of 'cultural enrichment'. 

But, he cautioned, historical evidence must be treated objectively. “We have a responsibility to make sure that this information does not get divided between left and right in a culture war,” he added.

If there's a culture war, who was it who fired the first shot, hmm,,? 

Whose Safety Is He Conscious Of..?

This is the moment a cyclist is flung over in the air after not spotting a closed gate in front of him - the third person to do it in just eight months.
The safety-conscious rider - with a helmet on and lights on his bike - is seen heading down a hill at speed in Sheffield, South Yorkshire.
But the thick metal gate - leading to allotments - which is sometimes open, had been shut.
Because it's not that of any pedestrian who might step out in front of him, is it?

Tuesday 28 November 2023

I'm Sure These Are Aberrations...

Three police forces are investigating suspected antisemitic hate speech at four separate mosques around Britain, it was reported last night. Footage of preachers calling for Jews to be slaughtered and Israel to be destroyed has been handed to detectives at West Midlands Police, Scotland Yard and Northamptonshire Police by reporters from TalkTV.
The broadcaster reported that a preacher at the Redbridge Islamic Centre in Ilford, east London, asked his congregation in Arabic to join him in cursing the Jews and children of Israel.

I'm sure it doesn't go on in more than just these handful of mosques. Aren't you, Reader? 

A Metropolitan Police spokesman said its officers continued to make a number of enquiries after being made aware of the video but there had been no arrests.

Gosh, another surprise! Well, that's the Met for you,

West Midland and Northamptonshire police forces confirmed officers were assessing the contents of a number of videos to determine whether a criminal offence had been committed.

Oh. Police cowardice. Something else that's pretty widespread, then... 

🎵"Feed the birds, tuppence a bag..."🎵

"And that'll be a £100 fine, Mary Poppins, you antisocial nuisance!""
The letter says putting food out for wild birds is 'unreasonable and is having a detrimental effect on neighbouring residents'.

How utterly ridiculous! Hundreds of thousands of people feed birds in their gardens every day!

Mrs Seago, of Staining, near Blackpool – who has lived at her home since it was built in 1982 – enjoys sitting in her conservatory and watching sparrows and robins eat seeds on her bird table.
She lives with her son, retired car salesman Alan, 77, who fears the battle with Fylde Council could put his mother's life at risk. He said: 'The council letter is menacing. This will finish her off. If we get fined, we are prepared to go to court.'

It's a gamble, sure, but even our ghastly excuse for a justice system should find in her favour, given the council's behaviour. 

Residents supportive of Mrs Seago say the council is 'bullying and victimising' her while refusing to investigate counter-complaints against Darren Horne, the neighbour who has complained, for playing loud music and banging his bin lid.

Common sense should have ensured the council investigate both, as if it does come to court, they've established unfairness.  

Monday 27 November 2023

There's A Simple Answer To These...

Another deportation of a foreign criminal has been thwarted after an airline passenger mutiny – and this time the ringleader was helped by a Left-wing human rights charity.
And that's for airlines to simply eject the passengers who are complaining and ban them for life.
Astonishingly, Hannah Gaffey, the leader of the latest revolt, boasted online about how she and others helped stop the deportation – and revealed how she was advised over the phone both before and after the mutiny by a caseworker at campaign group Detention Action.
It's not 'astonishing' at all - it's simply the expected result when these dimwits are allowed to virtuesignal at no cost to themselves.
Last night, former Home Secretary Priti Patel described the latest plane mutiny as 'shameful'.
'Anyone who deliberately stops the removal of a foreign national offender should face the courts for the taxpayers' funds their actions are consuming, for the wasted legal and court time they are racking up and for effectively standing by dangerous criminals who are a threat to the British public,' she said.

These people don't have any shame. The government and the airlines should see to it they have no seat and no chance of getting one in future.  

More Of This, Please, And Faster!

A female boxer withdrew from a Canadian tournament after being told her rival is transgender, citing safety fears.
Dr. Katia Bissonnette, from Saguenay, claims she was given just an hour's notice she was being matched with transgender fighter Mya Walmsley last month. The two had been due to face off in the 2023 Provincial Golden Glove Championship in Victoriaville, Quebec.
It's the only way this nonsense will ever be defeated. 

She did have the advantage, of course, in being able to cite a genuine H&S concern:
She ... cited a study by the University of Utah which found that men can punch 163 per cent harder than women.
Studies on the strength of transgender women suggest that hormone blockers may reduce this biological advantage slightly.

How slightly? 

Saturday 25 November 2023

Clarkson's Law Is Looking A Better Option Every Day...

The owners of an American bulldog who attacked a 17-year-old girl after going berserk at children in a park have been accused of making another dog behave aggressively by chaining it up in the garden for months.
Their dog - weighing eight stone and called George - had to be put down after terrifying locals in the picturesque village of in Thorpe Willoughby, near Selby, North Yorkshire, in May. The teenage girl was bitten in the arms by George, while trying to restrain him from attacking children at a kids' playground.
I don't subscribe to the view 'it's the owners, not the dog' but in most of these cases, it's clear they don't help... 

And nor do rehoming charities:
She lost control of the pet while taking him for a stroll just a day after George was rehomed by the previous owners.

Why would anyone expect a 17 year old girl to be able to restrain a thing that has often overpowered grown men? 

Villagers have been left heartbroken by the dog 'crying through the night' after allegedly being kept chained up in its owner's garden for the last five months. They say they have bombarded the authorities, including the RSPCA, with complaints about the alleged cruelty but nothing has been done.
'It really surprises me with the amount of people complaining about it that the RSPCA is not doing anything.'

It won't surprise anyone familiar with the way the RSPCA operates

Didn't Really Need The Location Pointer, 'Mail' Photo Editor...

Needham, commenting on her club's Facebook site, revealed that her side has 'faced challenges from teams unwilling to play against us while I am on the field.'

Well, how would they kn...


Needham had received full backing from her club, with the ladies' team secretary posting the message 'in unity we defeat discrimination', as well as its fans.

It's not discrimination, it's health and safety! 

The trans player has only played two matches this season – both in October – after apparently being given clearance by the FA. In the first game the opponent's manager, who has asked not to be named, realised five minutes into the game that she was transgender.
It took 5 minutes? I thought it was traditionally the referee who was supposed to have eyesight problems!
Fiona McAnena at Fair Play For Women said: 'Footballers are separated by sex for very good reasons.
'If you put one male on the pitch they are faster, they are stronger. It is patently unfair and in a contact sport like football it's unsafe.
'These women didn't choose mixed football, they chose women's football. It's not because this player is trans, it is because they are male.'

And they will stay male, no matter what surgery they undergo or what a piece of paper declares them to be... 

Friday 24 November 2023


Another day, another madman knifing innocent people. What concerns our progressive press, madmen? 

Police and politicians called for calm amid warnings against misinformation as violence escalated from a demonstration that began on Thursday afternoon at the scene of the incident.
A police cordon was set up around the Irish parliament building, Leinster House, and officers from the Garda Mounted Support Unit were in nearby Grafton Street.

They rightly feared that instead of just looting Footlocker, the mob might take it out on those responsible for the policies that allow this kind of incident.  

The Irish justice minister, Helen McEntee, labelled the scenes “intolerable” and said a “thuggish and manipulative element must not be allowed to use an appalling tragedy to wreak havoc”. The garda commissioner, Drew Harris, said a “complete lunatic faction driven by far-right ideology” was behind the disorder.

Because being angry that imported cultures have caused this is 'far right' and the politicians have to spin that line. They could instead simply point to reality: 

A hero Brazilian Deliveroo rider has told how he ended the school attack in Dublin which left two in serious condition after being stabbed by an allegedly 'psychotic' man.

But that would be pointing out some uncomfortable past decisions, wouldn't it?

Bystanders disarmed a man and pinned him to the ground, with several kicking him, one witness, Siobhan Kearney, told RTÉ. “People were trying to attack the man. So me and an American lady formed a ring around him saying we’d wait on the garda.”
Oh, sure. Can't let anything happen to the poor perpetrator, can we?

Not So Fast, Allow Us!

The man called the Met Police around 8pm last night to tell them that he wanted to take his own life and that he was in possession of loaded guns, according to a police statement.
Officers rushed to his address in Weston Green, Dagenham, and tried to talk to the man, believed to be in his 40s, in order to 'bring the incident to a safe conclusion'. Police contacted a specialist negotiator and continued efforts to engage with the man before shots were fired by officers just before 9pm.
Being The 'Nam, I guess police rightly weren't going to assume he was bluffing...
While the investigation is in its early stages, the Met Police has already revealed that a non-police firearm was found at the scene.
Shouldn't be a long investigation, should it?
The Met's Directorate of Professional Standards was made aware immediately after the incident and the Independent Office for Police Conduct has been informed.
Even for them.

Thursday 23 November 2023

If You Didn't Already Suspect This...

...well, you know what they say about a fool and their money, don't you?
Foodbank charity The Trussell Trust has been accused of misleading donors after it emerged more than 90 per cent of the money it distributes goes on non-food items – including diversity courses, debt counsellors and advisers who help people claim state benefits.
And it's even worse than that, because the donations are probably better spent there than on tins of baked beans anyway! was facing a backlash last night after it emerged the charity spent £18.6 million of donations on ‘financial inclusion’, employing professional benefits advisers and debt counsellors.
What's that old adage again about giving a man a fish vs teaching him how to? 

And if you insist on providing food instead, then, Reader, every supermarket these days has a donation bin for your gifting convenience. Use them instead.

It's A Mad, Mad World At The Moment...

Does it feel that way to anyone else? 

The news is full of manufactured outrage, when the headlines are full of reports of some fat mouthy nobody providing the 'conflict' that she was surely hired for, while further down the page arrogant celebs do what they've been getting away with for years because they are never brought to heel.

Meanwhile, the slightest glimmer of return to normality is greeted with effusive praise it doesn't really deserve. And everywhere are signs people are getting dumber.

I blame the media - beauty and wonder comes way, way down the list. Maybe it should be reversed?

Wednesday 22 November 2023

It's Like The Titanic Band Suddenly Announcing They'll Take Requests...

Jeremy Hunt will vow to 'get Britain growing' later today as he unveils the country's 'biggest ever' business tax cut and new plans to ease the burden on working families.
Publishing his Autumn Statement on the economy, the Chancellor will try to rebuild the Tories' reputation as a low-tax party with a targeted package of measures aimed at helping both business and families.'s not going to change anything.
The Chancellor will say that ministers are charting a new course on the economy and rejecting 'big government' in the wake of the Covid pandemic and a global spike in energy prices, which have driven both Government borrowing and the tax burden to record levels.

My prediction is that government won't shrink, and will in fact get even bigger.  

If They'd Gone A Little Further...

...would they have found a spider? And then a bird? Or does that only happen to old women?

The 'Mail' seems to have been employing a bit of dramatic licence with the 'buzzing' in the headline, as it was clearly dead and 'didn't move when prodded'. But how did it get there?

He told doctors he had only consumed clear liquids the day before his colonoscopy, as is required to clear the intestinal tract.
The evening before his 24-hour fast, he had consumed a pizza and lettuce — but said he did not recall a fly being in his food. In rare cases, flies have laid eggs in fruits and vegetables that have then survived the stomach acid and hatched in the intestines.

See? Stick to pizza, folks! The salad on the side is clearly the greater risk... 

Tuesday 21 November 2023

Shock Horror!

Allow me to translate from this 'Guardianese': 'Companies sell stuff people want to buy.'

The figures prompted a coalition of health, medical and children’s organisations to demand an urgent crackdown on “the irresponsible behaviour of health-harming industries”.
The NuPuritans in full cry, once more. Christmas must be nearly here!
The manufacturers were making vast profits by bombarding consumers with marketing and deliberately obstructing efforts by the government to restrict their activities, such as seeking to discredit scientific evidence of harm.

You can only 'discredit science' with proof. If your proof is better than theirs, we'd listen. That's how science works.  

The report was drawn up by health organisations and the economics consultancy Landman Economics. It is the first to estimate exactly how much money people in Britain are spending on “risky consumption” of products that evidence shows are, or can be, bad for human health.

Which 'health organisations', exactly? 

The research was undertaken by the Obesity Health Alliance (OHA), Alcohol Health Alliance (AHA) and Action on Smoking and Health (Ash) in conjunction with Landman Economics.

Ah. The usual suspects, indeed... 

Step In And Help? Nah...

This is the moment a gang of hooded thugs today kicked and punched a police officer in a McDonald's as they pinned him to the floor.
An elderly man tries to assist the downed officer by trying to push one of the men off him, as a female officer also tries to help her colleague in vain.

She's useless. Not a surprise.  

The three attackers then quickly flee out the open door. One of them in the blue coat is grabbed by the female officer and trips over, but he successfully gets away after being helped by his accomplice.

They'd been sent to investigate a report of a robbery, apparently.  

Chief Superintendent Clair Kelland, lead for policing in Kingston, said: 'I know members of the public will be disgusted by the assault on my officers.'

Frankly, while I would have been a few years ago, now I'm pretty ambivalent.  

Monday 20 November 2023

Surprised? No, Not At All…

A man is being hunted by police after being filmed launching a racist tirade...

Oh, at last! Took them long enough to start getting t...

Oh, wait. a pro-Palestinian protester travelling home following Saturday's demonstration.

I might have known! 

The man is heard in the video calling protesters 'scumbags' and saying they need 'eradicating' after confronting a Muslim protester and grabbing her sign whilst travelling on the same train.
The man, who is heard asking others in the video, 'Do you know what day it is?', is now being sought by the British Transport Police following the incident on Saturday.

With a lot more effort, I'm sure, than they'd go after a Muslim pro-terrorist sympathiser. And this one is, of course, playing the victim. 

'I still can't believe speaking up against a genocide garners this much hatred, but I have faith in humanity that we can bring an end to this violence which has killed 11,000 Gazans including 6,000 children.'

Maybe you forgot what started it all, love? 

Why Aren’t The Police Sharing The Dock With Him?

A woman had chunks bitten out of her face in a horrific attack by her partner’s XL bully dog.
Owner Kevin Griffiths ignored advice from police to have his dog called Reggie put down after it previously bit his partner.

Why were they giving 'advice' instead of seizing it and charging him under the beefed-up DDA the police demanded for just this sort of occasion?

Instead Griffiths kept the large animal shut in the bathroom of his flat, Swansea Crown Court was told. After the attack which left his partner so injured she needed plastic surgery and skin grafts to her cheek Griffiths was charged with being the owner of a dog dangerously out of control, WalesOnline reported.

Wales, again? What is it with this place and killer mutts

Four people have been injured in a serious dog attack. Two of the casualties have been airlifted to hospital following the incident in Gwynedd.
Police attended an address in Rhoshirwaun, Pwllheli, shortly before 11.30am on Friday in response to reports of a dangerous dog incident. Two people were taken to hospital by air ambulance and two others sustained minor injuries.
A North Wales police spokesman said on Saturday: "Following the incident a total of 37 dogs and a number of cats have been seized from the address. The dog involved in the incident was destroyed and is yet to be examined by a vet to establish the breed."

Not going to be a cocker spaniel, is it? 

Saturday 18 November 2023

Oh Dear How Sad Never Mind Pt 2879541

Asylum seekers billeted at a former military base in new Home Secretary James Cleverly's constituency held a protest yesterday over the 'prison-like' conditions.
About 40 men demonstrated outside MDP Wethersfield in Essex, complaining they didn't have access to doctors, were freezing due to poor clothing and bedding and were unable to contact their families.
Ooh, I have just the thing, where did I put it? Aha! Here it is:

Ah, I'm glad my recent PC issues didn't affect you, old friend...
The Home Office said it provided on-site healthcare, meals and exercise facilities, while asylum seekers were also permitted to go outside the base. A spokesman added: 'The welfare of individuals at the site is of the utmost priority.'
Not for me, it isn't.

Lying Liars And The Lies They Tell...

Police have said they are 'powerless' to arrest pro-Palestine demonstrators climbing on memorials unless they start physically damaging monuments - because 'no explicit law' exists.

Pull the other one, it's got bells on! You'd soon manage to find something - breach of the peace or public order is always a good one - if they were a different type of demonstrator. 

Rather than a huge march in London, as has been seen in recent weeks with thousands of protesters converging on the capital, dozens of events are due to take place in different parts of the UK on Saturday.
It has sparked a huge response from police forces, with the Metropolitan Police saying it will stage a 'significant' operation and will not tolerate hate crimes, including offensive chanting and placards targeting the Jewish community.

Yeah, sure, by appealing to find them after the fact, but not, I bet, by wading in and nicking them then and there...

Friday 17 November 2023

Education, Education, Education..?

A new survey shows that diners are routinely baffled by items they see on dessert menus. Only 35% of the 2,000 British adults surveyed recognised the term ganache, while only 13% could say what a tuile was.
Moreover, 40% could not define mousse, three-quarters had no idea what a coulis was, and up to 80% would give up if confronted by the word posset

Who on earth did they ask? I bet they all recognised 'slushie' and 'McFlurry' though! 

This ignorance extends to savoury dishes as well. Other surveys have revealed that frequently misunderstood menu terms include terrine (a coarse paté), crudo (raw, basically), lardo (an Italian cured pork product), and en papillote (cooked in a paper parcel).

These are all foreign words, I note. Why ask this, and not English regional delicacies, such as cranachan, or bara brith?  

Unless the whole idea was to paint the UK population as unsophisticated yokels to make your readsrship seem well-rounded and give them a sense of superiority and...which paper was this published in again?


How Long Should They Have Closed For, Then?

Police were called and the shop temporarily closed but it reopened the next day - a decision which was heavily criticised by locals as putting 'profit above everything'.

They are a business, after all!  

At the time of his death he wasn't considered 'high risk', so he was waiting for assessment with NHS talking therapies at his request. He had self-referred on March 1 and his appointment for June 3 (three months later) which is within the target wait times for the service.

If you want to criticise anything, maybe this is a better target for your ire. 

Thursday 16 November 2023

Not As Ridiculous As Calling Him ‘She’…

'Isn't it ridiculous,' asks a caption beside Steph Richards's photo on the charity's handouts, 'that I've got to my 40s before any medical professionals even mentioned endometriosis?'
At this point, I should point out that Steph isn't actually in her 40s: she's 71. And if no one discussed endometriosis with her when she was younger, the most likely explanation is that she's a trans woman and doesn't have a womb.

Then why are you going along with this utter nonsense and calling him 'she' and 'her'? 

Because we're talking about medical conditions that can be life-changing, sometimes with fatal consequences, I think it's important to use clear language. Steph Richards is not biologically female. However, I'm going to use her preferred pronouns and refer to her as she, since I fervently believe everyone has a right to live any way they choose - provided that it's not at the expense of other vulnerable groups.

If we continue this fiction out of politeness, we deserve all we get. We'll just get more fiction. We can argue, as Tim does, that we don't require a head of a charity to be the thing that the charity campaigns for, but that's rather missing the point. 

Why would this man be hired? Because he's a great fundraiser? Maybe. But if not, then he's a token, a sticker that says 'Look, we support trans rights!'. And anyone with any self respect wouldn't want to be in that position, surely?

Chivalry Is Overrated…

A woman wearing a black bandanna, top, coat, and ripped blue denim jeans launched into the shocking 'distressing' tirade on Armistice Day when 300,000 people marched through central London in a pro-Palestine protest.

She did this for two reasons - firstly, as a black person, she feels empowered and emboldened by the two-tier justice system that would take her side against anyone standing up to her, and that's a recent phenomenon. It could be reversed, should we ever get a proper Home Secretary.

And secondly, because she's a woman, ans she knows full well there's an inbuilt restriction against (most) men putting her on her arse, as she richly deserves. And that's not a recent phenomenon. And it's much harder to overcome. 

Wednesday 15 November 2023

Oooh, Yara, How Long Have You Got?

Gosh, it’s a mystery, isn’t it? 

Where Did She Get It From, I Wonder?

A mum who thought the family dog - an XL bully - was "lovely" until it attacked her six-year-old son, has urged the government to adopt tighter laws. The mother, who has asked not to be named, lives in Carmarthenshire, West Wales. She has had an XL bully for a couple of months.
Clearly an adult dog, not a puppy. Is this yet another case of rescue charity endangerment?
There was "not a single sign" the dog could act in that way, she told Sky News.
Apart from the breed itself, I guess...
She said her concern now was "what was happening before [she] had her".
Pity that concern didn't come before you brought the mutt into the house.
Before the incident, the woman had been a critic of the UK government's ban on XL bully dogs. "We're like, 'It's nonsense, it's nonsense', until you actually have to pull a 50kg dog off your son and I think then we start thinking," she said.
The dog would now be put to sleep after the incident, the woman confirmed.
At least, unlike other owners, she isn't passing it on to some other dim and unsuspecting family.

Tuesday 14 November 2023

I Say This Through Gritted Teeth…

 …but honestly, I cannot disagree with John McDonnell for once! 

I mean, FFS, James Cleverly as Home Sec? A man who is the very antithesis of nominative determinism?

And Cameron?!? 

Oh, I Think That Ship Already Left Harbour….

"Not sacking her would be utterly fatal because, at that point, as well as being an unpopular prime minister, he becomes a weak and unpopular prime minister."
You think he's not that already, then?
Referring to Braverman’s recent suggestion that homeless people were on the streets because they had made a “lifestyle choice”, the senior Tory added: “That was crossing the Rubicon. When you start attacking homeless people and saying it is a lifestyle choice, that is evidently ignorant, as well as nasty.” Asked how angry he was at Braverman’s behaviour on a scale of one to 10, he answered “11”.

Yet it’s demonstrably true that for some, it is such a choice. And who are you, who won’t even put your name to this, that we should care how angry you claim to be? 

This post was drafted and scheduled just before I left for a short break in Edinburgh and events rather overtook it, didn’t they?

Monday 13 November 2023

Move It Monday: November

Something to brighten the dark days of December, and it has to be the queen of the disco hereslf, Donna Summer, with 'Hot Stuff', so memorable from that scene at the dole office in 'The Full Monty':

Why Is A 23 Year Old A ‘Child’..?

A cash-strapped Lewisham mother has spoken of her despair as she and her children face their second eviction in two years.
Sarah Shaw, 52, and her four children were ejected in 2021 from their Downham home of 11 years, under a Section 21 “no-fault” eviction notice. They have since spent almost two years in dilapidated “temporary” accommodation in Lambeth, but now face a no-fault eviction from that property as well.

There's no 'Mr Shaw' mentioned, I see. There hardly ever is. So who's keeping them? Reader, you know. Don't you? 

Sarah struggles to find work because a rare skin condition makes her allergic to the sun and to lots of substances commonly encountered in indoor workplaces, such as soaps, oils and cleaning products.
She receives £949 per month in benefits, from which she must pay £469 towards the monthly rent on her mouse-infested temporary flat, a short walk from Oval station.

I can't help but think that money would go further elsewhere than London... 

Sarah’s oldest child, 23-year-old Shane, has depression, anxiety and PTSD. They were supposed to start a two-year course of intensive psychotherapy in 2021, but after being placed in Lambeth they were no longer eligible for the service.

A 23 year old is 'a child' now? 

Sarah’s other three children, all still in education, faced a 90-minute commute to school or college every day – but it was important to her that they not have to leave all their friends behind.

More important than being able to afford better living conditions? *shrugs* Oh, well...  

If So, It's About Time!

Suella Braverman has been accused of daring No 10 to sack her with provocative comments designed to cement her position as the rightwing frontrunner to succeed Rishi Sunak as Conservative leader. Former ministers and Tory insiders claim that the home secretary is deliberately making unauthorised statements on homelessness, demonstrations and multiculturalism to woo the party’s hard-right base.

That anyone could consider her statements as 'hard right' shows just how far the Tory Party has drifted to the soft left under Johnson, May, and Sunak. 

In fact, this is less a criticism of Braverman, as they claim, than of the weak PM they Tories installed... 

One former minister told the Guardian: “It is as if she wants to be fired so she can get on with a leadership bid … If she is tied to the government for too long, she will have to carry some of the blame for Rishi’s failure – and few people think he will win a general election outright.”

They are almost certainly right. 

Another former Tory frontbencher said Braverman’s decision to make statements that have not been signed off by No 10 shows that Sunak is weak.

I wonder if that same frontbencher voted him in, and is now regretting it? 

Sunday 12 November 2023

We Will Remember Them...

Even if this year, it's likely not to be the solemn day of remembrance that we are used to, at least at the time of writing...

Now men will go content with what we spoiled.
Or, discontent, boil bloody, and be spilled.
They will be swift with swiftness of the tigress,
None will break ranks, though nations trek from progress.
Courage was mine, and I had mystery;
Wisdom was mine, and I had mastery;
To miss the march of this retreating world 
Into vain citadels that are not walled.
Then, when much blood had clogged their chariot-wheels I would go up and wash them from sweet wells,
Even with truths that lie too deep for taint.
Wilfred Owen

Saturday 11 November 2023

"Everyone knows the lad who did it."

Not a very difficult case for West Yorkshire Police to solve, it would seem, thanks to social media:
'He's a troublemaker. He's aggressive and he turns on people. He was driving around with other people looking for trouble.
'They stabbed him, jumped back in the car and fled.'

It could be any story of ethnic gangland warfare in London, but it's not.  

West Yorkshire Police have arrested two teenagers on suspicion of the teen's murder. A spokesman said a 14-year-old boy was arrested shortly after the incident in Horsforth, Leeds, yesterday and he remains in custody.
A 16-year-old boy was arrested on yesterday evening but has now been released without charge.

A 14 year old. What the hell is this country coming to? 


I Love A Heartwarming Story...

An Upper East Side café where baristas quit in protest over the Jewish owner's support of Israel is now busier than ever with customers lined up around the block to show their support.
The owner of Caffe Aronne, Aaron Dahan, was left short-staffed Tuesday morning after his baristas quit on him when he addressed the 'Free Palestine' pins they wore to work.

His gaff, his rules, kiddies!Don't like it, find another job.  

'Our staff was young. They think they know everything, liberal, college-educated,' Dahan, who is Jewish, told The New York Post on Tuesday.'They think we're supporting genocide, we're supporting colonialism. They know the keywords but they don't really know what they mean,' he added.

Sadly, Aaron, 'college educated' is likely to have been the issue here, rather than, as you might have considered years ago, a potential help. 

Before they quit, Dahan made an effort to sit down with his baristas and speak with them about their differing views. 'We knew our staff. We knew they were thinking these things. I said, 'Let's go for dinner. Let's sit. Let's ask questions. Let's learn. Let's realize that we're not all here trying to kill each other,' Dahan said.

You can't talk to people like this, you can't explain anything to them. It's been drummed into them that being righteous is a goal all by itself.  

Friday 10 November 2023

Goin’ Underground

London’s busiest Tube stations will soon be available to explore virtually using Google Street View. Transport for London (TfL) has said more than 30 stations will be added to the online service, in the hope of allowing passengers to better plan their journeys.

It's about time! 

The images will be collected by a small team organised by Google between 10am to 4pm to avoid peak hours, using a backpack camera. Google's blurring technology will then be applied to the imagery, which is designed to automatically blur identifiable faces before publishing. The images will be launched throughout 2024, allowing passengers to get a better sense of the layout of the stations when planning journeys, as well as identify key facilities such as toilets and help points.

A great use of technology, and not a government grant or incentive in sight. 

Definitely Didn’t Need More Caffeine

A short-tempered dad "saw red" when a shopkeeper refused to sell his 13-year-old son an energy drink. Stephen Brown, 38, stormed into the off licence on Breeze Hill, Walton, and attacked the male staff member, slamming his head into a fridge and punching him in the face on September 25 2020.

Ah, Liverpool... 

Brown, who has 24 convictions for 64 offences, initially denied the attack, but pleaded guilty before a trial.

Roll out the excuses! 

Tom Watson, defending, said: "He barged into the shop and, with both hands, pushed the victim's head into the fridge and either threw a punch or attempted to throw a punch. Nothing whatsoever could justify that behaviour and the defendant knows it. He has indicated that he would wish to apologise to the victim and, if he were given the opportunity, to write a letter." He said Brown's son, now aged 16 (Ed: Yes, it's taken so long to come to trial he can now legally buy the stuff!), was "displaying serious behavioural problems and causing serious problems" for his parents, adding: "The defendant acknowledges that he as a role model has been appalling."

He got two years behind bars, but no doubt his offspring will pick up the thuggery slack for him... 

Thursday 9 November 2023

Not The Sort Of 'Therapy' Anyone Needs...

Another day, another XL Bully on the rampage.
A dog has been shot by armed police after attacking two people in Halifax.
Officers received reports the owner, another person and a second dog had been injured on Stainland Road at about 18:00 GMT on Monday. Attempts to restrain the animal were unsuccessful and it was destroyed by armed officers, police said. The two people were taken to hospital with minor injuries and the other dog was taken to a vet. Police said a woman had been arrested over the incident.

Another female owner of one of these things? 

She has been bailed to appear before Bradford magistrates on Monday 4 December.
And she's getting in her excuses early:


That doesn't sound much like an apology to me, does it to you, Reader?

The Scale Of Imported Crime...

I watched 'The Met' on Tuesday night, and it featured two different cases, a stranger rape (of a cataclysmically drunk young woman) and a murder of a homeless man. I was struck by how the perpetrators (and in the case of the homeless man, the victim too) were all foreign-born.

So, reading this story yesterday morning, details stood out:

Shocking footage shows the moment a knifeman tried to kick his way into a house before stabbing his daughter's father-in-law to death in a row over wedding gifts.
Ahmad Alsino, 43, confronted dentist Mohammed Salem Ibrahim, 55, on his own doorstep before stabbing him four times with a Gino D'Acampo kitchen knife.

He was quickly arrested and sentenced to life. But it's just another case which tests the 'diversity is a strength' manta to near breaking point, isn't it? 

Wednesday 8 November 2023

The Scale Of The Problem, Or Just A Shaggy Dog Story?

More than 550 people have been attacked by dogs in South Devon so far this year, and now a leading Torbay councillor is calling for action before the figures escalate further.

If those figures are extrapolated across other counties, it is indeed something that needs looking at. I'm just not sure he's on the right track, though, despite actual first-hand evidence of the problem.

Earlier this year Liberal Democrat leader Steve Darling (Barton with Watcombe) was injured himself when a Bully XL attacked his guide dog while he was out canvassing in Torquay.

What does he suggest? 

...he said, Torbay Council should consider reinstating the post of dog warden to help cut attacks. The bay does not currently have a dog warden.

More local council jobs? Hmmm. How will that help? Since it turns out that the injuries are - thankfully - almost all minor: 

Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust says 556 people sought treatment at minor injury units for dog attacks across South Devon in the year up until Wednesday 20 September.

He's not a fan of BSL. 

In his letter he says that banning the Bully XL breed – a recently-developed American breed which can become aggressive – is not the answer.

Really? A breed so agressive people prefer to jump from a window rather than be mauled by the thing? 

“We cannot and should not keep adding dogs to the banned list – we need a fundamental change to the law on dogs acting dangerously to protect the public now and in the future.”

We had a change to the law. Remember? The police begged for one to the DDA, and it was granted. And did they then act immediately to use those new powers? 

Reader, we know they didn't...

H/T: IanJ via email

'Crime Doesn't Pay' Overturned Again...

Cara James was wanted by police after failing to attend at magistrates courts.
So how did she elude them? A cunning hiding place? Well...
In September last year police were alerted to her presence in HMP Hindley visiting her then partner.

And not just for a chat, either: 

Bolton Crown Court heard she was arrested and made a confession that she had drugs on her. Verity Quaite, prosecuting, said: “She disclosed that she had something in her bra.
“She was conveyed to the Wigan custody suite and strip searched.
“They found a small cellophane wrap on her bra.
“There were 14 sheets of A4 writing paper. “It was analysed and shown to be laced with a class B drug commonly known as spice.
“The value in prison is five times higher. “It was £100 per sheet so a total of £1,400.”

Well, bang to rights, surely? 

Recorder Philip Grundy said he had never not sent someone to prison for this offence.

Ha ha ha ha! There's always a first time, eh, Phil? 

But he said: “When I came into court today there was nothing that could have saved you from being locked up.
Your counsel has persuaded me to step back from locking you up today.”
He suspended a sentence of eight months for two years, ordered James to do a 12 month long alcohol treatment requirement and attend at 30 rehabilitation activity requirement days.

What a farce. 

Tuesday 7 November 2023

Oh, Here We Go…

...Tolkein's in the 'racism' spotlight again:
Over the years, Italy’s ultra-conservative prime minister has quoted passages in interviews, shared photos of herself reading the novel and even posed with a statue of the wizard Gandalf as part of a campaign. In her autobiography-slash-manifesto, she dedicates several pages to her “favourite book”, which she refers to at one point as being a “sacred” text. When I read the news this week that Italy’s culture ministry is spending €250,000 to organise a Tolkien show at Rome’s National Gallery of Modern and Contemporary Art, and that Meloni will attend the opening, I couldn’t help wondering: why? What is this government trying to achieve by stamping its mark so aggressively on one of the world’s most loved fantasy sagas?
Maybe just to watch you get your Y-fronts in a bunch, Jamie?
When The Lord of the Rings first hit Italian shelves in the 1970s, the academic Elémire Zolla wrote a short introduction in which he interpreted the book as an allegory about “pure” ethnic groups defending themselves against contamination from foreign invaders. Fascist sympathisers in the Movimento Sociale Italiano (MSI) quickly jumped on the provocation. Meloni, an MSI youth wing member, developed her political consciousness in that environment. As a teenager she even attended a “Hobbit Camp”, a summer retreat organised by the MSI in which participants dressed up in cosplay outfits, sang along to folk ballads and discussed how Tolkienian mythologies could help the post-fascist right find credibility in a new era.

At this point, my eyes were rolling so much they nearly fell out of my head... 

Obviously, we’re talking about a fringe movement here. But it’s worth recognising that, with a little imagination, the sagas of Middle-earth do fit pretty neatly into the logic of contemporary rightwing populism.

Paging Dr Freud... 


Usual Owner Again?

A man on a mobility scooter was attacked by a bully XL-type dog when he went to protect his own pet.
Police have launched a search for the dog and its owner after the man was attacked near Hamnett Court in Birchwood, Warrington, on Friday.

Usual owner, semi-feral tattooed thug? Well... 

A third man helped the woman owner put her dog on a lead before she left the area.

Usual actions of the cowards that own these things, at least... 

The force is now appealing for help in tracking her down. The force described the dog as tall and slim "male XL bully-type". It was brown in colour with white patches.

A decription of the dog, but none of the owner? And no CCTV in the area? Seems they aren't trying very hard... 

Monday 6 November 2023

‘Mother Of The Year’ Title Still Up For Grabs…

And it won’t be going to Shona!

As my youngest daughter is a late August baby, she started school just one week after turning four and I'm ashamed to say she was still wearing night nappies at the time. Was this my fault for focusing on work and not spending my days encouraging her to sit on a potty? Guilty as charged, I'm afraid. But that was my choice.

And because it was your choice, that’s why you’re being criticised. Rightly so.

Rodents Of Unusual Size

A beachgoer was shocked to spot a "giant" rodent washed up on the beach by strong winds during Storm Ciarán. Warning: Graphic images.

It's pretty big, so not sure why the 'Argus' sought to put the word in scare quotes... 

The creature was found dead on Hove beach near Rockwater after heavy rain and strong winds this morning. It is about three foot long and reminiscent of a large rat, but with large yellow teeth like a beaver.

It's not the most invasive species to rock up on beaches this year, though. And I knew what it was likely to be before it was confirmed... 

Professor Fiona Matthews, from the University of Sussex's school of life sciences, confirmed that the creature looks like a coypu, based on its tail and teeth. Brighton and Hove City Council has been approached for comment regarding its disposal.

They are probably still wondering if they have to give it a hotel room. 

Sunday 5 November 2023

Two British Obsessions In One...

...the weather, and taxes! Superb as always, Matt.

And It's Not (Quite) A Homophone...

,,,but as the sender points out, if it had gone off, they would have been pretty diffused all right!

H/T: The Jannie via email

Sunday Funnies...

OK, but...aren't some of these methods actually worse than the things you are trying to deter?

Saturday 4 November 2023

Well, Of Course!

Bill payers could be on the hook for almost £6bn to cover the cost of bailing out suppliers that went bust during the energy crisis, according to the government’s spending watchdog.
I mean, don't we always?
Dame Meg Hillier, the chair of the committee, said: “Our report is a sobering reminder that we are still living with the fallout of the failure of so many energy suppliers in 2021-22.
Right, sure. Not a failure of government, oh dear me, no...

Not For The First Time…

...I'm wondering just what sort of people are being recruited to the police:
The NCA has set up a project to bring together experts on 3D-printed firearms and better train police officers to identify the weapons and the equipment needed to make them, Biggar said.


“We’ve got a project called Interknow, which is pulling together everyone who is relevant in the UK to 3D-printed firearms to try and share knowledge, not least so that when your average police officer goes into a house to do a search, and they find something, they actually recognise it’s a 3D-printed firearm and not a Nerf gun,” Biggar said.

 That might be a leap too far, for some…

“And then when they see a 3D printer, they know what to look for around the materials. Because not surprisingly, that’s not what they’re expecting, what they are trained on.”

Has TV been lying to me again? Don’t they have briefings before going out to kick down doors?

Friday 3 November 2023

Not A Surprise Anymore…

The son of two retired Metropolitan police officers, who controversially avoided jail despite killing two people in a drug-driving incident, is to be arrested for the eighth time for refusing to attend court.
Yes, Reader, 'tis he, again. He's never out of the courts or this blog, is he?
Max Coopey, 22, was expected to be sentenced today for driving while disqualified after he indicated he would change his 'not guilty' plea. However, the young man apparently told his solicitor at the last minute that he now wished to maintain his denial and would not turn up to court. East Berkshire magistrates in Slough, Berks, immediately issued a warrant for Coopey's his arrest - the eighth issued to the man since his headline-grabbing first offence in 2018.

Even his brief is sick of him:  

Coopey's legal representation, Shehneela Ahmed, told the magistrates that the defendant's last minute decision not to attend court on Wednesday had left her 'professionally embarrassed.'

It’s puzzling where his obvious contempt for the justice system stems from, isn’t it? 


People are used to seeing stark warnings on tobacco products alerting them about the potentially deadly risks to health. Now a study suggests similar labelling on food could help them make wiser choices about not just their health, but the health of the planet.
...if people have 'grown used to seeing them' doesn't that imply it's not working? And so, won't work on this either?
Researchers believe their findings could help encourage changes in gastronomic choices that could ultimately benefit the environment. “Reaching net zero is a priority for the nation and the planet,” Hughes said.

No, it isn’t. 

Thursday 2 November 2023

Belated Tweet Of The Month

Now I have my PC back, here's the selection from last month:

The Royal We, Amelia?

Shops don’t simply give us what we want – they make us want it.
Speak for yourself! Nothing that has been advertised or stocked in supermarkets made me buy (or want) Hallowe'en tat. This house was free of pumpkin candles and furry spiders and plastic skeletons. And of trick and treaters, thanks mostly - I suspect - to the bad weather. Not that the sweets will go to waste, the tech guys in the office will make short work of them on Friday!

But if you like that, go to it! Why not? Life’s too short to live it according to misanthropes like ‘Guardian’ columnists. 

Wednesday 1 November 2023

We’re Missing Two Words…


…those being ‘getting caught’. 

But he says news of the event only came out 15 months later, and so that  limited the damage to trust in government.

How low do you think that trust is now..? 

Another 'Sauce For The Goose' Affair..?

Bongi Mbonambi 'had mostly white friends' at private school pool parties and 'colour meant nothing to him', his mum says, but now South Africa's hooker is at the centre of Tom Curry 'white ****' racism storm.

So what? None of that would count for anything were the races reversed, in fact, they’d be taken as proof of his racism. 

So why should they suddenly be accepted as excuses now..?