Archive for February 2009

England -v- Ireland

I will be Tweeting the the England -v- Ireland Six Nations game.

Follow the commentary on Twitter or Facebook.

If anyone is interested, here’s the commentary from Twitter …

  • England get the British national anthem again. When will we get Jerusalem instead?
  • National anthem scores: England 0 – 2 Ireland
  • All 3 BBC commentators – English, Irish and Welsh – are predicting an Irish win
  • Paddy’s are on the offensive, very good at line-outs
  • England aren’t even trying to win line-outs, very strange
  • Ronan O’Gara misses a penalty for Ireland. A good attempt but it was a long way and a challenging angle.
  • England make a break but waste the opportunity with a silly mistake. Lot of foot action going on at the moment.
  • England concede a penalty yards from the Irish line. Bit of nastiness. England concede another penalty, O’Gara misses by miles.
  • Not a particularly exciting game this, no score so far and neither side looking very dangerous.
  • Famous last words – O’Gara scores from a penalty. Third time lucky I guess.
  • England attacking, not convincing
  • England concede another penalty, Phil Vickery getting attention from the medics.
  • Ireland made the only convincing try attempt of the game so far. England put the ball into touch. Huge sigh of relief.
  • England come close to scoring a try – much closer than Ireland. Penalty to England, dead on and close. Flood scores an easy 3 points. 3 each
  • A dull first half. Score is 3 all. Nobody has shone in the first half, a thoroughly disappointing game so far!
  • Second half starting a bit more lively. Words will have been had in the changing rooms.
  • O’Driscoll scores a drop goal for Ireland. Score now 6-3 to Ireland.
  • Ireland looking much more promising than England. Nasty tackle on O’Driscoll, bet he’s seeing stars right now!
  • O’Driscoll runs into an Armitage shaped brick wall. Penalty for Ireland but no idea why. Armitage was trying to avoid tackling off the ball.
  • One too many knocks for O’Driscoll, he’s out of the game holding his head. Ireland came within an inch of a try.
  • Ireland using a penalty to get a lineout in the England corner.
  • Vickery gets a yellow card for playing the ball when he was off his feet – just what we need when Ireland are a few feet from the touchline.
  • O’Driscoll still on the pitch and scores a try for Ireland. No idea who went off holding his head then! Maybe there’s more than one?
  • O’Gara misses the conversion. England still within reach of a win but a man down and not playing as well as Ireland.
  • England looking like they might get a try – a blinding run halfway down the pitch
  • England attack is over – England throw the ball out of play and then concede yet another penalty.
  • Armitage scores a penalty for England bringing the score to 11-6 to Ireland. England need a converted try to win.
  • Toby Flood and Paul Sackey both injured. Andy Goode (aka the missing link) is on the pitch. Danny Care gets a yellow card, no idea why.
  • Danny Care got the yellow card for trying to bend an Ireland player the wrong way – well deserved.
  • O’Gara scores a penalty for Ireland. England are a man down, the game is Ireland’s
  • England suffering from being a man down. Ireland winning 14-6 with 3 minutes plus injury time left to play. The fat lady is warming up
  • Armitage scores a consolation try for England! Goode scores the conversion. 30 seconds left to play, a drop kick is all England need
  • Ireland wins 14-13 but England almost caused an epic upset in the dying moments. Awful play by both sides and the score reflects that

Technorati Technorati Tags: , , , , ,

Leading by example

I don’t know if any of you have ever been to Telford but it has approximately 300 traffic islands per head of population.  Yet despite this dubious accolade, virtually nobody in the town knows how to drive round one.

I admit that some of the concepts of negotiating a traffic island are a bit tricky, such as using the right hand lane when turning right instead of driving all the way round the outside of the island, cutting people up.

There’s many a time that I’ve been cut up by some dickhead who can’t drive round an island and ranted to my unfortunate passenger that the police should do something about.  The policeman driving the car that followed me tonight wouldn’t have done anything about it though – he also seemed to have the same problem turning right at islands despite the fact that he was almost doing a full circuit of the island, which should have been a big clue as to which lane to be in.

Technorati Technorati Tags: , ,

Jonah claims another scalp

Back in December

Prime minister Gordon Brown wants investment in technology to be at the heart of the UK and Europe’s economic recovery.

Speaking after a summit with business leaders from firms including Vodafone and BT, as well as French president Nicolas Sarkozy and European Commission president José Manuel Barroso, Brown said the time had come “to build the technological and environmental infrastructure of the 21st century”.

And yesterday

Mobile phone operator Vodafone has announced plans to cut about 500 jobs in the UK in an effort to reduce costs.

Jonah strikes again.

Technorati Technorati Tags: ,

Telford leaves city region with immediate effect

Champagne PopI would love to have been a fly on the wall in Simon Murphy’s office today when he got the call from Telford & Wrekin Council announcing that they were leaving his city region quango with immediate effect.

A week ago to this day I wrote an email to the leader of Telford & Wrekin Council, Andrew Eade, after writing about the city region’s plans for independence:



You either don’t know what the city region’s plans are or you do know and either don’t understand or don’t care.  Whichever it is, we should not be a part of this.

You have plenty of soothing words about how you don’t like it but you want to make sure we don’t lose out if we leave and how the city region doesn’t have any real powers.  But soothing words are worth nothing because the city region will have statutory status, it will have a legal personality, it will be allowed to apply for its own money, it will be allowed to enter into legal contracts and it will be able to make statutory policy that Telford will have to abide by.

This is nothing like the benign organisation that you and others have told us the city region is.  So what’s the truth Andrew?  You don’t understand the city region or you’ve been lying about it?


Councillor Eade told the Shropshire Star “I’ve always said we would stay in the City Region to try and maximise any benefits to our community”.  He hasn’t always said that – prior to the last local election he said that he would pull Telford out of the city region if the Tories won.  It’s taken close to two years and a lot of back-tracking for him to put his words into action.

Maybe the timing is a co-incidence, maybe the email I sent played a part in the decision to leave.  Either way, it’s a big victory and further proof that Greater Birmingham the City Region of Birmingham, Coventry & the Black Country really isn’t going to turn the West Midlands into the land of milk and honey.

Beware the enemy within

A senior Met Police officer has warned that we are likely to experience a “summer of rage” caused by “known activists”.

Superindendent David Hartshorn says that “known activists” are likely to organise protests and the recession will provide them with the “footsoldiers” they need.

The “known activists” are most likely the BNP.  The timing – just after the BNP trounced Liebour in a Kent by-election – is too much of a co-incidence.  He also mentions banks as a viable target.

Would the BNP use the banks as an excuse to wind people up?  Does a bear shit in the woods?  The BNP are left wing socialists with a policy of extensive nationalisation.  Most of their members are only interested in booting foreigners out of the country but the party is about more than that.  The BNP want a nationalist socialist country with prison sentences for people who weaken the state and nationalisation of key industries.

But the police are wrong to be concentrating on the BNP – they should be looking at the eco-terrorists as the biggest threat.  These are people that are evangelical in their belief that the world is about to end in a man-made climate apocalypse.  Sensible people who realise that the global warming scam is a load of bollocks have already been labelled as worse than the nazi’s and likened to holocaust deniers and virtually nobody dares question the climate change propagandists in public.  Importantly, they vast majority of eco-terrorists are also anti-capitalists and they see capitalism as the cause of the man-made climate change they’ve invented.

The eco-terrorists have a judgement in their favour that they can use to justify whatever damage and destruction they want to cause.  They argued that they were justified in causing tens of thousands of pounds worth of damage to Kingsnorth power station because the law says you can cause reasonable damage to prevent even greater damage from happening.  This was intended for things like breaking down the door of a house to turn off the gas supply in times of emergency or breaking into a petrol tanker to move it from a car fire, that type of thing.  But a jury agreed that the eco-terrorists at Kingsnorth were justified in causing £30k worth of criminal damage to the power station because of the damage it causes to the environment.

That ruling gives the eco-terrorists a get out of jail free card.  In fact, it gives them an avoid jail in the first place card.  They’re motivated, the British government is doing their propaganda work for them and the law appears to be on their side.  Rather than obsessing over the BNP where the entire establishment is working against them, the police and politicians should be more concerned about the eco-terrorists that are already on the inside.

Technorati Technorati Tags:

Facebook scam warning – is Facebook negligence to blame?

facebook-scam.pngThere’s another scam doing the rounds on Facebook – this one puts a message in your notifications as follows:

Friend Name has faced some errors when checking your profile View The Errors Message

The spelling mistake is a clue but it’s subtle and I must admit, I nearly clicked on the Activate button after clicking the link.  But the application installs itself without you clicking the Activate button so you need to remove it if you’ve clicked the link, even if you saw it as a scam and didn’t activate.
I’ve obliterated the names of the two friends who’ve activated the scam application to spare their blushes.

From what I’ve been able to find out about this scam (it’s only about a day old) anyone who activates the application causes the same “notification” to be sent to their friends.  There is a suggestion that the application can do other things, possibly harvesting your details or mis-using your account in other ways.

The application can be removed by clicking the Applications button on the Facebook status bar and then Edit.  Find “Error Systems” and click the x next to it.

This poses some serious questions about Facebook and what can only be described as negligence on their part.  Why does the Facebook API allow an application to install itself without the user giving permission to do so?  And why is Facebook hosting such an application?  Do they vet new applications to make sure that their users are protected from scams like this?

Facebook has just abandoned an attempt to revise its terms and conditions to give it more control over its users’ data.  Is there any reason to think that Facebook can be trusted with even more rights over the data its users store there when they cleary can’t be relied on to protect it?

Technorati Technorati Tags: ,

Party Time

Mrs Sane and I went to a 40’s and 50’s themed party last night.  I’ve never had to wear a monkey suit before – we don’t get invited to those sort of parties usually!


I felt like a waiter in an Indian takeaway.

Technorati Technorati Tags:

Jonah claims another victim

Another day, another victim of the curse of Jonah Brown.

Yesterday it was the turn of Saab who, following talks between their Chairman and El Gordo on setting up a new factory in the UK, are now considering filing for bankruptcy protection in Sweden.

Today’s victim is the mining company, Anglo American, which has just announced 9,000 job cuts worldwide.

The link with Jonah?  Cynthia Caroll, Chief Executive of Anglo American sits on Jonah Brown’s “Business Council for Britain” – a group of unelected representatives from big business who advise him on business policy for England (it’s devolved in the rest of the UK).

Technorati Technorati Tags: , ,

Saab becomes the latest victim of the Jonah curse

Jonah Brown is continuing to wreak havoc on the global economy.

A week ago he visited an Ericsson R&D plant, a Mini factory and a Corus factory.  A few days later Ericsson announced 5,000 job cuts, BMW announced 850 job cuts at Mini and Tata announced massive job cuts as part of a £600m cost saving exercise at Corus.

When I saw the announcement that Saab is considering filing for bankruptcy protection in Sweden, my first reaction was “what’s the link with Gordo?”  And sure enough, it didn’t take long to find evidence of Jonah’s involvement.

El Gordo has been talking to the head of General Motors in Europe, Carl-Peter Forster, about setting up an electric car factory in the UK.  Carl-Peter Forster also happens to be Chairman of … you’ve guessed it … Saab.

How different things might have been if Jonah hadn’t been allowed to spread his curse around the globe.

Technorati Technorati Tags: ,

Alas poor Jade, we knew her well

Jade Goody shot to fame for her … interesting … performance on Big Brother and has kept herself in the papers by doing daft things and insulting people.

Sadly, she has terminal cancer and her time on the mortal coil is coming to an end.  She will leave behind two young children.

Doctors are doing what they can to prolong her life and it’s a cruel twist of fate that Jonah Brown has chosen to curse her by praising her determination.  He visited John MacDougall, the MP for Glenrothes, days before he lost his battle with cancer …

Technorati Technorati Tags: ,

Another startling revelation by the BBC

The BBC Money Box programme has “discovered” that banks are allowed to take credit balances people hold with them to pay that person’s debts.  Quite a discovery, I wonder if Peston had anything to do with this startling revelation.

Exercising right of set-off was quite routine when I did a stint for the NatWest debt recovery office about 10 years ago.  It was an unspoken rule that we only did it when people were taking the piss – the kind of people who owed the bank 10 grand and offered to pay it off at a tenner a month but had a holiday fund, Sky TV and spent 200 quid a month on fags and booze.

Citizens Advice is asking banks not to exercise their right of set-off any more because it leaves people unable to pay their mortage and other bills.

They are quite right, it does leave them unable to pay their bills but why should a bank forego their right to claim money that’s been deposited with them to pay off a debt that the same person has with them?  If someone owes a bank money and they’ve got the means to pay all or part of that debt in another account with the bank, why is it unreasonable for the bank to expect them to do so?  It’s no different to a mortage provider having the right to reposess and sell someone’s house if they don’t pay the mortgage, they just don’t have to go through a lot of expensive hoops to get their hands on the assets.

Technorati Technorati Tags: , ,

Any excuse to undermine democracy

The next round of local elections in Northern Ireland are to be postponed for a year because of changes to local government.  The number of local authorities in Northern Ireland is being reduced from 26 to 11.

The British government has also been working to reduce the number of local authorities in England by inviting local authorities to put in proposals for converting from district and county structures to unitary authorities.  Several district and county councils – such as in Shropshire – are now disappearing to be replaced with unitary authorities, often despite massive opposition locally.

Regional Assemblies are also supposed to be abolished in 2010 and city regions are being promoted and given statutory powers in England as another form of regionalisation.

Postponing the local elections was apparently requested by the Northern Ireland Assembly but it had to first be approved by the Northern Ireland Secretary and the Privy Council, on which the Northern Ireland Secretary also sits.  The Northern Ireland Secretary is Shaun Woodward MP, a former Tory who defected to Liebour and a close ally of El Gordo.

I have said, on more than one occasion, that I wouldn’t be surprised if the next elections were postponed “in the interests of national security”.  A precedent has been set in Northern Ireland now for postponing elections just to accommodate boundary changes.  There’s a lot of local government reorganisation happening in England as well as Northern Ireland in the next year.  Could this be the reason the One Eyed Scottish Idiot needs to postpone the next election?

Technorati Technorati Tags: ,

Value for money, isn’t it?

HM Court Service introduced the Libra computer system in December last year 7 years late and £260m over budget but it went live without the ability to issue a summons in Welsh, which has been a legal requirement since 1967.

The service says it intends to add the functionality in by September this year at a cost of around £4m and in the meantime it is having summonses translated by the Ministry of Justice.  So far the MoJ have spent £425 on translating summonses meaning it will take 1,569 years to recoup the £4m cost of automating the translations.

Talk about pissing money up the wall.

Technorati Technorati Tags: , ,

In Sweaty-sock Land

Well, I made it to Scotland (just about) and I’ve not been detained for crimes against the promised land so far!

I nearly didn’t make it – I forgot to take my passport with me for photo ID but luckily the departures people accepted my work security pass as valid ID even though it’s not got a company name, address or phone number on it.  Lucky for me but worryingly easy to get on a flight without a valid form of ID.

The first thing I noticed on arrival at Edinburgh Airport was the Scottish flag – it’s everywhere.  The taxi marshall’s had St Andrews Cross beanie hats, the signs all had Scottish flags on, there were adverts for all things Scottish inside and outside the airport.  You’d never see a Cross of St George outside an English airport, that’s for sure.

The flight was ok, the plane was too hot though.  The FlyBe executive lounge at Birmingham Airport was disappointing – there were no staff other than the person checking you were allowed in there and there was no free WiFi which I would have expected for the price of the tickets.  We ended up sitting in Wetherspoons and waiting for the flight, at least there was a bit of activity.

The hotel – the Apex City – is nice.  Got a room with a view of Edinburgh Castle, nice big telly and free WiFi.  If you’ve got to go to Edinburgh I’d certainly recommend staying here.  Will be going down for breakfast shortly – I’ll let you know what the food is like later.

Technorati Technorati Tags:

Global Warming propagandists blame Australian fires on climate change

The wildfires in Australia are a terrible disaster for the country with over a hundred people killed but why do the global warming propagandists have to seize on every natural disaster to try and scare people into believing in their scam?

The State of Victoria has assigned 100 police officers to investigate the fires which they believe were started deliberately and are treating it as a murder inquiry.  But in the next breath, the global warming propagandists at the state government are saying that the fires are down to climate change.

Australia is mostly desert and has been for centuries. It is the fact that most of the continent is hot and dry that causes fires to spread – which happens pretty much every year – not climate change which is causing a decrease in global temperatures.

Australians have been told by their government that the fires have been caused by climate change but if a police inquiry discovers that the fires were started deliberately, will the government publically announce that it was nothing to do with climate change after all?  No, because there is only one thing that’s incompatible with climate change theory and that is admitting when it’s wrong.

Technorati Technorati Tags: ,

Bank Bonuses

RBS is getting a kicking for its billion pound bonus package at the same time as taking god knows how much money off the taxpayer.

Yes, RBS has been run into the ground, taken on too much high risk debt and over-extended itself buying ABN Amro, but the majority of RBS staff weren’t responsible for the bad decisions – they were just doing their jobs and have continued to do so in the face of mass redundancies and an uncertain future.

The people at the top – the chairman, the board and senior managers – shouldn’t get any bonus whatsoever until the bank has paid the taxpayer back every penny it’s had from the bailout.  But the ordinary staff aren’t responsible for the collapse of RBS and they shouldn’t be punished for it – if their individual performance merits a bonus then they should get it.

Technorati Technorati Tags:

Shropshire Star: England is denied EU aid benefit by Labour

This excellent letter appeared in the Shropshire Star on Saturday:

England is denied EU aid benefit by Labour

The Labour Government is denying England a windfall from the European Union yet it is making sure that Wales, Scotland and Ulster benefit.

The fall in the value of the pound has increased the value of euro-denominated EU grants by a fifth and the European Commission has offered a six-month extension to its December 2008 deadline to all countries for unused funds as part of a 200 billion euro (£178 billion) economic stimulus package.

Labour took up the option for Scotland, Wales and Ulster, but rejected it for England. Only recently Brown and his ministers held their cabinet meeting in Liverpool to demonstrate solidarity with the people of Merseyside in the midst of the recession.

However, in 1989 he signed the Scottish Claim of Right, in which he pledged “to make the interests of Scotland paramount” in everything he said and did.

As Prime Minister we rightly expect him to show and even-handed attitude towards all the nations of the UK.

Anyone who feels angry at this anti-English action might consider joining the Campaign for an English Parliament. Our number is 07071 220234, which is not a mobile number. Our website address is

While Wales and Ulster have their own assemblies and Scotland has its own parliament, England has no such parliament or assembly. Labour cares for the UK’s Celtic nations, while treating England with contempt.

Derek Armstrong
CEP Member
Shropshire Branch

Derek has set the bar high – not only did he get across a very valid point on the blatant discrimination the English suffer at the hands of the British government, he also got the CEP phone number and website address in the letter as well!

Technorati Technorati Tags: , ,

Another Fucking Database

The British government is making yet another database – this time with details of all overseas travel.

The database will store names, addresses, phone numbers, seat reservations, travel itineraries and credit card details for every trip made.  And the reason?  Fighting crime, illegal immigration and terrorism of course!  How many travel itineraries are likely to say “Monday, visit Houses of Parliament; Tuesday, return with 300lbs of semtex”?  How many credit cards are likely to have been issued to Al Qaeda Enterprises?

It’s a fucking joke.  A sick joke, but a joke nonetheless.  This wil do nothing to combat crime or terrorism, it’s all about controlling the civillian population.  George Orwell must be turning in his grave to see the party he supported creating the surveillance state he warned us all about.

Technorati Technorati Tags: ,

Jeremy Clarkson Strikes Again

Good old Jeremy Clarkson, he always manages to get himself into trouble.  He’s got a long way to go before he can challenge Boris Johnson or Prince Phillip for the top spot but he’s a solid contender.

This time he’s offended blind people, disabled people and Scottish people by calling El Gordo a one-eyed Scottish idiot.

It’s interesting to see the amount of people who claim to be offended by what Clarkson said and it’s unfortunate that he’s apologised (although he refused to apologise about calling him an idiot) because when you examine the facts – he’s Scottish, he’s blind in one eye and he’s an idiot – Clarkson was bang on the money.

If Clarkson’s comment was offensive to the sweaty socks, perhaps this advert I did for the CEP a while ago will get the Scots and the English worked up …

Technorati Technorati Tags: ,

BBC and ITV go metric

Over the last few days the news on the BBC and ITV have, understandably, talked about virtually nothing but the snow.

There are plenty of other things going on in the world they could be talking about but the snow is a major event so fine.  But with the snow has come an apparent metrication of the BBC and ITV.  When they tell us how much snow has fallen it’s 10cm or 15cm.  They aren’t even giving it in inches as well for the majority of the population who don’t do metric.

Surely excluding most of the population by using only metric is a breach of the BBC charter.

Technorati Technorati Tags: , ,