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Fool on the Hill

 


May 30 2005

Non!

YES! The French said Non, and the suits are rushing about like a herd of crazed ostriches, not knowing where to peck. Gratifying to see how you can cast them into confusion and barely suppressed rage, an object lesson to everyone I think.The Dutch will probably try to beat the French by getting an even bigger majority against the constitution, perhaps as much as 75% against, and it would be grossly unfair if the UK public were denied the opportunity to try to beat it and have a go at Blair all in one go. It could even turn into a Eurosport event to rival the Eurovision song contest.; Germany nil point, as they have already said yes, although I'm not sure they had a referendum, they have always been in favour of European unification, have the Germans. Yes, definitely a sea change in consiousness, a dislocation between the politicos and the people, which is a very positive thing.

It's so inconvenient for the suits to have to hold referenda; just can't control people enough and it's always risky, the eurocrats would prefer it if they could dispense with letting the public get involved entirely, make life so much easier. They thought it was going to be full ahead for the gravy train.


May 29 2005

Help other for FREE


If you visit The Hunger Site. It takes just one click to contribute 1.1 cups of staple food to hungry people. While you're there, be sure to click the tabs across the top to visit their partner sites: child health, animal rescue, etc. Click here to help others

If the French vote non, as I hope and trust they will, to the proposed 'Constitution' of the future United States of Euro, the bastards aren't going to hold a referendum here, as they know they'll get another resounding no. I believe there's a paradigm shift going on, ther population no longer trust politicians, they have realised where the suits in Brusasels are heading and they just have to say no. Real politics is increasingly done in the streets, it's single issue politics and the politicians don't know how to deal with it. They have now formed a political class, and are of the impression that the rest of us must be patronised and manipulated but never trusted with making decisions. The growing sense of this is what's behind the increasing unpopularity of the Union. The cats out of the bag, it's all about doing right by big business, no matter what that means for the population. In France, where left wing politics never died and where it's not unknown for the population to take to the streets, it is looking like a wish for a rerurn to socialist values together with a green agenda the politicians barely understand. Voter apathy can be a positive thing, revolutionary even. Voting for them only encourages them, to ignore them and tackle things at ground level and gradually take the power away from them and make them look foolish. Forming another superstate to 'counterbalance the US' is the old way of thinking, what you'd expect from politicians, the US, as it is increasingly finding out, is not as powerful as it thought.


May 26 2005

Brave new world

Identity cards are 'on the cards' again with the neo-fasist neo-labour tory-lite junta, but with the obvious inanity of alleging they were necessary to combat terorism [the threat of which was created or exacerbated by the illegal war against Iraq], they are now saying they are needed to combat identity theft. So they're working for the banks, surprise surprise. On top of this, they are going to make people pay for their own enslavement by charging £93 for them. There is a campaign against them here where you can read about the campaign and sign a petition, but apart from writing to your MP, there's not much any of us can do about them and it's now down to our elected representatives to defeat it, which looks fairly unlikely with the craven subservience there is among the clones who inhabit the backbenches. The gang intend to sneak them in piecemeal, making anyone who wants a new passport get one as part of that process. As I have no intention of acquiring a passport in the foreseeable future, I shall not be getting an ID card, even when they become compulsory, and I imagine there'll be quite a few others who will be similarly unidentifiable. Aspirant terrorists will of course make sure they have one, one way or another, as it will be taken by all the state's minions as absolute proof that the owner is bona fide, and any suspicions they might have had will be quieted by this 'guaranteed', high-tech proof. The fact that the science isn't up to it as there's a failure rate of four in every hundred won't carry any sway with the police who have never been that bothered about getting the right person [another innocent person released, this time after 25 years for a crime he didn't commit at age fifteen]. First create the 'need' and then figure out how to do it. Perhaps Muslims will have a crescent on theirs, and Jews a star of David? The urge to control seems endemic with some individuals.

We're amassing a useful stock of food in readyness for the bird-flu pandemic which all eperts are expecting 'at some point in the near future'. Signs of it breaking out in China, and the government there is banning the keeping of chicken and vaccinating wild geese. With viruses you just wait and see what will evolve next. A pandemic will happen when a variant appears which combines the deadliness of the bird flu H5N1 with the ready person to person infection rate of human flu, and with the modern rate of air travel and the tight-packed nature of major cities, we could see a pandemic far greater than the 1918 Spanish flu pandemic that killed between 20 and 40 million people worldwide. When it hits, I want to be able to keep the doors shut and not go anywhere near shops with people sneezing and coughing. If its in the summer, we could probably manage with our own fresh vegetables, but any other time it would have to be tinned. I would have to take the dogs out early to avoid other dog walkers. As for the rest, working from home we only have to deal with courier drivers, who will be met by a person in a face mask and dealt with briefly. Having had 'ordinary' flu several times, I don't want to repeat the experience, especially with a virus that makes a mess of your lungs and finally kills you.

It will take their mind off terrorism when it comes, in fact, terrorists could well be planning to fly to an infected country, contract the disease and then fly around the world, with their ID card, breathing and coughing on people as they go, leaving plane loads of infected people to take it out into their communities before the authorities had realised it was on the way. As suicide seems to be part of the method, the near fatal nature of the disease won't deter them, and if they're out to deal the biggest blow possible to the rich killers' societies, I can't think of a better way. Make 9/11 seem like a 'shot over the bows'.

Ate our first salad leaves from the garden, and mighty fine they were too. Can't get fresher than that, from soil to plate. It's all flying now, along with nature. Funny thing is, while all other plants are about a month early these days, May blossom still appears in May and not before. Trees dotted about the landscape looking as if they have a dusting of snow. This evening, as dusk gathered over the fields, the air thick with flying insects which occasionally blundered into my face, the air was so full of birdsong it sounded like the birth of a new world, rather than the dying days of an old one. My second sighting of a wren, this time a baby even tinier than the adult, hunting among the undergrowth for snacks, he seemed well able to look after himself and survive. And I heard a challenged one on TV say she was unable to identify a chicken, didn't know if it was a duck. I'm constantly horrified with the level of ignorance and sheer inability to think around me. And it seems to be getting worse, driven by the idiot media with their obsession with 'reality' TV and the lives and antics of completely uninteresting 'normals' I wouldn't want to spend time at a bus stop with. The idiots have truly taken over the asylum. Asylum Britain where the Chavs are everywhere, and breeding like rabbits.

I've been pursuing spammers who get me so pissed off filling my inbox that I went on the offensive, and boy can I be offensive. The latest if one Adam Katz who sells ebooks about training dogs and has the usual multi-layered marketing techniques of all the hucksters that proliferate on the net. Hard spiel about how you can't do without their product, complete lack of design, enough text to send you into a coma, and an easy way to enter your credit card details. I've been getting dozens of spams trying to send me to this creep's website, so I tracked him down and got his email address adamkatz@dogproblems.com and I've been forwarding all his emails and a other spam until his email box fills up and they bounce, I wait a while and send them all again. If he wants to know what being pissed off by a stranger is like he chose the right person to spam. American of course, goes without saying, having no economy left at home they're all trying their snake-oil salesman pitch to the world.


May 25 2005
Who ya gonna believe, me or your own eyes?

After a quick visit into town for a loaf, I approached the traffic lights at a busy crossroads which were allowing traffic past from the left, the pedestrian signal being red. I don't usually wait for the stick man to turn green, preferring to judge for myself when it's safe to cross, and, seeing a gap between a line of speeding up cars and a large truck that was taking longer to get up to speed, I walked across after the last car and with a safe distance between me and the truck. As I got to the pavement an old lady waiting there, decided to take her cue from me, and walked slowly out into the road as the truck bore down, the lights still in his favour. Why she did this rather than looking at the traffic is a mystery. The quote, 'who you gonna believe ...' is by Groucho Marx of course.

Drove over the border into Wales yesterday, or Cymru [pron: gum-ree] as they call it. Not very far into Wales, but enough to again experience Welsh rain. This is a phenomenon known to anyone who's been to Wales; a steady fine drizzle, which you can't really focus on but can feel against your skin like gentle needles, and which drenches everything as if by osmosis. It's almost a part of life, and doesn't warrant mention as rain, real rain is huge droplets which hammer at you from a great height and quickly make everything awash, except for the rolling Welsh hillsides which are able to cast it off quickly, there only being a few inches of topsoil and grass before rock. The ground is fit to sit on soon after a downpour, but difficult to drive tent pegs into. I have bent many a peg in attempts to anchor tents in a brisk wind in Wales. Better to use rocks, which are provided everywhere in abundance.


May 21 2005
Encounters

The blackbird chicks are doing fine, but we have decided to only put food out once a day, or they will grow up thinking this is where food comes from, rather than exploring their world and finding all kinds of natural food. Their parents will doubtless take them further afield now the three times a day supply has dwindled. So we see them less, but still get to hear the beautiful evensong, as they live here.

Today, driving on some very narrow B roads, windy and often steep with hairpin bends in unexpected laces, when on a downhill bend I encountered a horse and walking rider coming up hill, accompanied by ywo more people and a dog. Judging that although the horse could probably get past, It would find it stressful, I reversed back up the hill and into a farm track to give them space. The teenage girl rider thanked me as she walked past [courtesy still exists in rural areas] and then the horse, turning his head towards me and looking straight at me, moved his mouth in a complicated motion as if speaking, then carried on his way. He thanked me! Quite definitely, it was communication between species, something many people sneer at, we being, apparently, the only species able to communicate due to our peculiar palate.

A changeable day with sudden showers that flood, and on higher ground hail a centimetre across, interspersed with brilliant hot sunshine with clouds racing across the sky on an errand to dump on somewhere else, all coming from Wales. Some useful rain for all the growing things, it was beginng to get very dry, at least for the Marches.

Interesting mechanism happening in the Greenland Glacier. Melt on the surface from the raised air temperature runs into pools which heat up and grow on the ice that contains them, eventually melting a hole in the bottom which continues melting right down to the rock, 2 miles below at the thinnest poibts. On rteaching the rock and with nowhere to go, the water spreads out, forming a perfect lubricant layer between the rock and ice shelf which then speeds up towards the sea. There's also the possibility that huge lakes can form inside the ice, which are suddenly released when forces and resistance dictate, taking ice before it. This glacier is about the same size north to south as the whole of the US, and around a quarter of the width. That's a lot of ice.


May 20 2005
Greenland glacier melting fast

NASA scientists are worried. They have discovered that the Greenland glacier is melting very fast, “If nothing is done to stabilize our climate and sea levels rise as much as 6 meters (20 feet), you'll flood the southern half of Florida, and the southern half of Louisiana." And a lot of other places too; Bangladesh, Holland, most of eastern England to name but a few. And they're only talking about the sea level rise from the Greenland glacier; then there's the other glaciers, all in retreat, plus Antarctica, and all the mountain regions which are all seeing shrinking snowcover, and the effect of the seas expanding from temperature rise. That's a lot of water not where it should be. That level of rise would also be goodbye to most major cities, including London and estuarial towns, most of Essex, Suffolk and Norfolk [the Norfolk Broads would be underwater long before that]. As seen on TV last night the Greenland glacier is breaking up into massive icebergs bigger than the tallest skyscrapers, and all moving inexorably to the sea. Time to move to higher ground?

http://www.floridaclimatealliance.net/news/greenland.htm

 


May 19 2005
Who wants a European superstate

The referendum in France on the EU constitution could go either way, but I hope the French vote for it, if they vote against we won't have the opportunity to vote in the UK and thus will be deprived of giving Blair a bloody nose and scupper the euro-supertate agenda. I sympathise with those French people who are as pissed off with the suits who want to stitch Europe into a united states framework as I am, but we won't even get a referendum if they reject it. The politicals are agitated and forecasting disaster if they don't get their own way in an attempt to frighten people into going along with it, but this is a crucial time, the decision could cement the union into something as horrendous and out of control as the USA which should never have come together and formed this monstrosity which now the rest of the world has to live with. I can't imagine Texas declaring war on Iraq, or Iowa or Oregon or any of the flyover states, it's the sheer size of the US which makes the politicos puff up their pathetic chests and get belligerant, so much better if the states had remained separate. Now the eurocrats want to turn an economic union into a superstate, why else would we need a constitution? With horrible creeps like Kinnock well embedded in the whole Eurotrash world and doing very nicely out of it, it will continue to grow like a tumour, sucking increasing wealth from european taxpayers to put it in suit pockets. Small states don't cause trouble.

Eleven US states sued the Bush administration on Wednesday to block new rules allowing coal-burning utilities to trade rights to emit toxic mercury, adding to a flurry of lawsuits challenging the regulations. Mercury has been linked to autism and other neurological problems.

Today soybeans are eating up larger and larger chunks of the Amazon, leading to a 40 percent jump in deforestation last year, to nearly 10,000 square miles [an area larger than the U.S. state of New Jersey]. Even the pastures where cows grazed until recently are being converted, pushing a cattle herd that has become the world's largest even deeper into the agricultural frontier. The Amazon, a tropical forest larger than the continental United States, is home to up to 30 percent of the world's animal and plant species and produces vast amounts of oxygen. Waht we gonna breath, Soya?


May 18 2005
Nature rushes on

The baby blackbirds are out of the nest and hopping round the garden with the parents, being shown the ropes of survival. Able to fly, but still with a two tone effect, as the front half is still fluffy brown chick feathers, and the back half black adult plummage. They hop to within a few feet of the cat, sunning herself on the warm stone tiles, but she's unconcerned, being very old and regularly fed. Not all cats are so pacific though, so I hope they don't get too blase in their formative months.

The general concensus on the George/Norm match is 10 to George, 0 to Norm, who just looked goofy and gormless as the tables were turned on him and George spoke over his head [way over] to the American people. A mismatch; heavyweight versus lightweight. Now George versus Rumsfeld, that would be a fight worth watching. No way the oily neocon is going to expose himself to it, especially now he's seen how deadly the Scottish bruiser can be. One of the bits of 'evidence' these clowns had against George was a list in which his name had been inserted in a different typeface at a different point size, and looking as if it had been photocopied and stuck in. I mean, really, is this the best they can come up with? A kid with a toy printing set could have done better.

Blair's big idea to combat youth anti-social behaviour is to ban the wearing of hoods in public places. That's going to be about as effective as abolishing war by banning military moustaches. The hoodies wear their hoods because they don't want people to see what narrow, mean little faces they have, all spotty and shifty, of course they want to hide even in public, poor loves. What they'd really like is a couple of years national service, where they could lead a healthy outdoor life with lots of discipline, play at war games occasionally and get rid of some aggression, learn how to take care of themselves, and learn a useful trade. Hopefully, after that they'll settle down more easily to being adults. The mistake has been to think that if you let youth hang about the streets to get bored you won't have problems. It will at the same time remove the problem from the streets and deliver it to professionals who know how to deal with snotty yobs and don't feel the least bit intimidated. As a peacetime organisation, soldiering doesn't even have to play a part in it. It could be constructed to offer a non martial experience, with plenty of community work, there's plenty needs doing. They could make a start clearing up the litter their age group repeatedly drops averywhere and anywhere.


May 17 2005
Hurricane season approaches

MIAMI: US forecasters predicted on Monday that up to 15 tropical storms and hurricanes would form in the Atlantic and Caribbean this year, another busy season on the heels of one that hammered Florida with four hurricanes and swamped US oil production. The 2005 hurricane season, which runs from June 1 to Nov. 30, would continue a string of mostly above-average stormy seasons that began a decade ago, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) said in its annual hurricane forecast.

Time to write nasty letters to Norway, Iceland and Japan again, they are all due to start again this year with 'scientific' whaling, which is so scientific that the catch all ends up being sold as food.

A joy to watch George Galloway giving Norm Coleman a verbal kicking; answered all the wooly smears with hard facts, made the whole committee look silly and used the opportunity to tell the American people a few things they don't hear from their media. Bet they're regreting the whole thing now, meant to be a diversionary move to draw attention from the real crooks who have been helping themselves to money from oil [Americans] and to clobber the UN which they hate because it doesn't always do what the US wants and has the temerity to criticise it on occasion.George used his time to good effect, exposing the neo-con agenda. Only someone with his ego, arrogance and previous life as a boxer could have done it.

 


May 16 2005
American justice style - penal or penile?

Blair's craven subservience to the US continues with his idea of dressing minor offenders doing community service in bright orange boiler suits like the American penal style so they can be identified and humiliated. Perhaps they'll also be chained together at the ankles as well, and have guards with stun guns and whips. If we then reintroduced the death penalty - with a variety of interesting ways of extinguishing life - we could join the US at the bottom of the penal league along with a handful of undeveloped, backward nations still in the middle ages. Rather than looking at the causes of minor criminal behaviour, Blair opts for a publicity stunt which so far has only impressed the Sun, odious right-wing rag of the rabid class which has difficulty with thinking. Once upon a time, the Labour Party would have been horrified en-masse if the Sun had approved of anything they did. The Sun has not changed, it has always been a low-brow, bigoted, right wing titfest, a waste of trees and energy and an embarrassment to any Brits with a brain.

Wooly thinking ... Anyone thinking that the wearing of wool isn't an issue of concern should visit here and learn why Peta are campaigning against Australian wool due to the way they treat sheep. Mulesing is routinely carried out on lambs by Australian sheep 'farmers' as a 'treatment' to avoid maggot infestation. The reason why sheep are vulnerable to maggots is because they are not indiginous to Australia, but were imported by the white man at a time when moving species from one continent to another was viewed as a good idea. New Zealand is also guilty of this gross animal abuse. Peta are targeting Benetton because so far they have ignored requests to boycot Australian wool, yet Pakistan’s Bonanza Garment Industries and India’s Mohini Exports have joined PETA’s international boycott of Australian wool until lamb mutilations and live sheep exports end. So, who's developed? Certainly not United Hypocrites of Benetton.

Timberland has made the decision not to sell products that contain Australian wool until mulesing mutiliatons and live exports stop. The live exports are due to Muslims wanting animals bled to death while fully conscious, a nasty, ignorant, deviant practice that the UK has been sucked into, due to the PC Multiculturalism lobby and the vociferous, bullying nature of Muslim immigrants who refuse to adopt the culture of this country, where animals' welfare has been a hard fought battle, which has now been turned on its head, with Hallal meat even being served to all our armed forces to avoid any chance of the tiny number of Muslims in uniform ingesting non-halal. So Australian sheep are shipped thousands of miles on open-deck, multitiered ships through all weather extremes and with nothing to drink, , crammed in and mired in their own excrement, and eventually slaughtered while fully conscious to satisfy the aberrated mindset of religious halfwits.

An example that alternatives to wool are possible here. Of course, the best alternative to wool is hemp, which can be treated and spun to a wide variety of fibres and is better than wool on a whole range of criteria, it's also better for the planet.

I've also found this site exposing the practices of Iams, a leading [US] manufacturer of dog and cat food. Most people don't know that Iams funds research on animals which would appall them if they knew. The dogs and cats in Iams’ tests are no different from our dogs and cats at home when it comes to deserving companionship, play, a stimulating environment, and the right not to be tormented in painful experiments: dogs gone crazy from intense confinement to barren steel cages and cement cells, dogs left piled on a filthy paint-chipped floor after having chunks of muscle hacked from their thighs; dogs surgically debarked; horribly sick dogs and cats languishing in their cages, neglected and left to suffer with no veterinary care. Iams are the manufacturers of Eukanuba. I hear that Iams will provide refunds to people who request one on the grounds that they object to Iams’ laboratory tests on animals. So anyone who has unknowingly bought their products can return them to the pet store for a full refund.

With friends like this ... A study last year by the California Energy Commission estimated that up to 4,720 birds from 40 different species are killed each year at the wind farm at Altamont Pass, including as many as 1,300 protected raptors. The yearly death toll includes more than 100 golden eagles plus red-tailed hawks, burrowing owls, kestrels, and meadowlarks, according to the Audubon Society. The wind farm is along a migratory path for raptors and near a nesting area for golden eagles, clearly not a consideration during the planning of this, the biggest wind farm in the US. It's this kind of thing which makes wind energy so hard to progress. http://www.planetark.com/dailynewsstory.cfm/newsid/30802/story.htm

Go for it George ... George Galloway is on his way to the US to take on the Republican creeps who think they can make spurious claims of him benefiting from oil gifts from Saddam without any proof. George, a Scottish political bruiser who has seen off the Daily Telegraph, and received substantial damages, is more than a match for this Senate committee, led by the intellectually challenged, rabid Republican ferret Norm Coleman [I haven't seen such a goofy looking moron for quite a while, American inbreeding certainly throws up some oddballs], a man with a mission to attack all who opposed the war against Iraq on behalf of his Fuerher. I think Norm is about to meet his nemesis. Certainly promises to be entertaining as the most vociferous opponent of the war gets to appear on TV and attack every aspect of it. Try as they might, they won't shut George up and he will have his say. They may have to censor him from US TV, or he will be telling Americans things their free democratic government don't want them to know. You find a sharper political awareness in the slums of third world countries than in the average US Main St. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/politics/4539429.stm


May 13 2005
Money doesn't talk, it swears

News just out that Cadburys, one of the largest purveyers of animal fat and sugar concoctions lightly flavoured with chemically-grown, factory-farm chocolate, has bought Green & Blacks, the only organic, fair trade chocolate available. This is like a whore running a convent. The suits at Cadburys saw Green & Blacks gaining an increasing share of the market as more and more people opted for fair trade, and realised organic actually tasted so much better than the chemically drenched variety, and decided they wanted to own it. It's in the nature of capitalism; profit is god and ethics are an inconvenience no company dedicated to maximising profits for its shareholders can afford to waste money on. Whether the Green & Black brand will remain organic or fairtrade is doubtful in this new age of globalization.

It could have been worse, they could have been bought up by Nestle, who have proved over many years that they don't even care that they are killing babies by aggresively marketing their baby milk in countries where most mothers are too poor and where the water it is mixed with is likely to be unsafe. Not to mention the antibodies babies get with their mother's milk which so far Nestle have failed to incorporate into their 'product'.


May 12 2005
What it means to have Bush yet again

The Bush administration last week released its plan to repeal President Clinton's Roadless Area Conservation Rule -- a policy that put the last remaining 58.5 million acres of unroaded national forests off-limits to road building and energy drilling. Unlike the original roadless rule, which was adopted following more than 600 public hearings and 2.5 million public comments in favour, the Bush administration's repeal followed no public hearings, no scientific scrutiny, and more than 1.7 million public comments in opposition. In the face of the announcement by the administration, Rep. Jay Inslee (D-Washington) and other members of Congress are pledging to reintroduce legislation that would codify Clinton's roadless rule into law.

And deaths in Iraq are mounting by the day as it slides ever deeper into chaos, yet still the defenders of the decision to invade claim it is a better place now against all the evidence. I guess it's all they can say in the circumstances when everything those who opposed it said would happen has happened. It's now civil war between Sunnis and Shias, which doubtless Rumsfeld and the other nazis are comfortable with, as it's only Muslims killing Muslims.

Iran now seems to be saying 'come on big boy, what ya gonna do' with its defiance of US instructions to close down its nuclear power facilities. Despite being totally opposed to nuclear power, I find the US attitude, bristling with the largest arsenal of nuclear weapons on the planet, hypocritical in the extreme, and I can't see that even if Iran did develop nukes, the world could hardly be a more dangerous place than it is now with a nuclear armed bully striding around telling others what they can and cannot do. The age old 'do as I say not as I do' crap which America seems remarkably good at. And the blame lies with the American people who either elected or allowed to be elected the gang of zionist-inspired criminals who currently have power, mostly by apathy, too many of them feeding their fat faces in burger-frenzy to notice what's happening, or to care.

Detailed facts on how the Iraq invasion was accomplished can be found here in an article by Greg Palast, an American journalist who has written for the Guardian and is now at the New York Times [and author of the book 'The best democracy money can buy]. His opinion is that there's enough to impeach Blair in a top-level government memo marked "SECRET AND STRICTLY PERSONAL," dated eight months before Bush sent us into Iraq, and the 'smoking gun' they've all been talking about. The memo uncovered by the Times [London], goes on to describe an elaborate plan by George Bush and British Prime Minister Tony Blair to hoodwink the planet into supporting an attack on Iraq knowing full well the evidence for war was phony.

I'm proofreading a book on the American Revolution at the moment, so I'm learning more about how the US started while every day I'm aware of what it has become. I see they are trialing 30 CCTV cameras somewhere in the US, which is pretty amazing considering there's hardly a street in the UK which isn't covered by the bloody things now - every move we make ... although they have helped to solve a few nasty violent crimes which would otherwise have left the police without a clue, or clueless as I prefer to think of them. Given that our society today is so much more violent and mindless, I guess it's a price we must pay to at least get the dangerous creatures locked away, even though it's always after the fact as they don't seem to deter crime, merely provide information on movements in an area, and, rarely, to actually show the crime happening, although neither of the recent two stabbings in the neck of women, one paralysed, the other dead, were captured, so we clearly need yet more of them so every inch of the country is covered and nothing that happens anywhere is missed.

UAE taking the piss
Seems to me that any westerner going to the UAE is considered fair game. The British woman charged with having illegal drugs in her system, but since released without charge, 'could have been given the drugs [codeine and diazepam] by the police' when she was arrested! I wonder if the UK police have noted this and are considering this a useful ploy when lacking evidence. Latest is that they stopped her with a passport query, and took a urine sample [normal in th UAE I guess, especially if you're a woman] then, when they found traces of the said drugs, one of them [codeine] common in the UK without prescription, they arrested her. Her production of documents proving they had been prescribed by a doctor in the UK led to a demand they be in Arabic, not easy to do when you're behind bars. Seems to me people should avoid this backward, if rich, country like the plague until they move out of the ninth century and enter the twenty fiirst.


May 11 2005
Another foreign introduction, this time from prehistoric Australia

I realise that the discovery of a prehistoric species of pine in Australia is fascinating news, the oldest plant on Earth, the Wollemi Pine (Wollemia nobilis) was known from fossil records dating back 90 million years but was presumed extinct for around 2 million years. The discovery has been equated with finding a dinosaur alive today.

On 10 May 2005 Kew unveiled the UK's first specimens of the unique Wollemi pine. After trials at secret locations in the UK the trees takes their place amongst some of the rarest in the world, conserved for all to see at Kew Gardens and Wakehurst Place in Sussex, where seeds are preserved in the Millennium Seed Bank.

I just hope they don't start stocking them in garden centres, there's no knowing the long term repercussions of introducing even a modern species, as the infestation of rhodedendron in the wild is witness, something this ancient is obviously a surviver, and may have many tricks up its sleeve to do just that.

Blair acts in an increasingly insane way that I'm surprised no commentators are remarking on it. Faced with a monumental vote of no confidence, with most Labour MPs who retained their seats doing so despite Blair and all reporting that on the doorstep everyone was saying they hated him, he and his die-hard band of friends and co-conspirators claim that 'he' won Labour a third term when he almost lost it. Now he appoints an unelected wonk who's been his advisor and speech writer and nothing much else since leaving Oxford to a cabinet post, first making him a lord in able to do it. This will really endear him to the Labour opposition and the public. The wonk, one Andrew Adonis, would have been much more emotionally at home in the Tory Party if it weren't in such a mess, so he's gone for the winning team as a career move and has 'radical ideas' on education. Poor kids. Having had their education fiddled about with by consecutive government ministers with 'ideas' for lomger than any of them have been alive, it must be part of the education experience to have the school system change over every year or two, old exams replaced with new exams created by commercial companies charged by this brave new world management team to both make a profit and deliver results, who can't even keep the exam papers secure, a quantity went mssing recently and the whole paper had to be withdrawn and recreated, which probably just meant a few changes on the computer and another print out.

Whether the rebels who are growing continue to grow to the point where they tip the balance and get the waverers, is to be seen. Calls for his resignation are growing and if he hasn't gone before the next party conference, it will likely be the liveliest conference ever. There doesn't seem to be a way they can continue as it is at present, all the media want to ask is 'when are you going to resign?'. He certainly won't be able to support the oilman in any more adventures as he'll be sent to his room if he attempts anything like it.


May 10 2005
Blogs, the new way to earn a living?

An interesting article on blogs and advertising by Darren Rowse shows how much the top blogs are earning, and it's staggering. Of course, people like Darren, a self-styled pro blogger who gave up his day job, have huge daily hits.which helps a lot, and many are within industries where advertising works to great effect. He reviews the top 30 blogs from Truth Laid Bear’s Traffic Ranking page and I'm still reading, and hopefully learning how to increase my earnings, at least to the point where they pay my costs. A good site for information all about blogs and blogging [and advertising to pay the bills] is Blogkits a textbook example of a blog, where Jim Kukrul disseminates advice and wisdom and negotiates advertisiing on behalf of bloggers. New ads may therefore be appearing here shortly. A fact of life, if you don't have unearned income or a sugar mommy, you have to run ads.

Raving away cancer?
Researchers in a University of Birmingham team tested the impact of amphetamine derivatives such as Ecstasy and weight-loss pills, and antidepressants including Prozac. They found the drugs were effective at blocking cancer growth in more than half of lymphoma (white blood cell cancer) samples tested.

Back to the environment. Millions of pine trees throughout Greece have been killed by the Monophlebus Hellenicus insect this year, threatening the country with a major environmental disaster. The infestation was deliberate though, Greek honey makers introduced it in a bid to increase production, as the insect produces a type of honeydew which is harvested by honey bees, but it's now spread to other forests and nature reserves, and is killing trees on a vast scale. The honey makers were aided and abetted by microbiologists of course, forever playing god and meddling with nature, who deliberately inoculated trees with the pest in an effort to increase honey production and make more money for their paymasters, without once wondering if there might be undesirable consequences.

According to the Journal of Insectology [edition57 2004]:
'Up to 1995 this insect was known to be monophagous on certain species of the genus Pinus. From 1995 onwards several attempts were made to establish M. hellenica on fir trees, Abies cephalonica (Loudon), on Mt. Helmos (Greece). Two different inoculation treatments, either with 2nd instar insects or with adult individuals, were used for the establishment of the insect on fir trees.
These trials were successful [?] and for the first time in 1999 was collected honey, the physicochemical characteristics of which represents a good quality honey. These results create the necessary preconditions for the increase in the honey production derived from the honeydew secretions of M. hellenica.'

So as late as 1999 they still hadn't realised what they had done and were looking forward to increased honey and profits, oblivious to the wider implications. When will these meddlers learn that transferring species out of the area they evolved in is dangerous and usually leads to all manner of unexpected effects. African killer bees were similarly transported from Africa to South America in an effort to increase honey production, and are now moving north, killing native bees and posing a threat not just to plants that depend on pollinators, but even to humans. This current threat to forests is much more serious than the deaths of mere humans. Rhodedendron, taken from the Himalyas by the bloody Victorians and planted in gardens all over the UK has spread to Snowdonia and is swamping native plants and poisoning the ground for anything else. The Victorians didn't know any better, but we do now.


May 9 2005
So the slogan for 2005 is Blair Out!

With mounting calls for his resignation, Blair is not fighting to survive, no longer the arrogant 'I'll go when I'm ready' or the even more egotistical 'a full term', he will be lucky if he lasts the year. He still doesn't get it. The people didn't elect him to be prime minister, they elected labour MPs, in greatly reduced number, to represent them, but the overwhelming message was a slap in the face for Blair. Cherie is said to be devastated, doesn't understand why so many people hate him so much. Well, it must be sheer bloody mindedness after all he's done for the country.

His gang of supporters are all there, defending him from the comfort of their well-paid cabinet jobs, all the usual suspects, including Blunkett, who remarked the other day that the British people should take a long hard look back. This is rich coming from a blind bully like Blunkett who seems incapable even of reflecting on his own mistakes. That a government minister who had misused his office to gain benefits for the nanny of his lover not to see how wrong that was, and for him to be brought back in by Blair after just a few months, speaks volumes for how corrupt they all are. Rather than 'listening to the people' as he claims he has, and learning from it, he's still the same arrogant, doctrinaire ego he was when he was lying repeatedly to the nation that Iraq had WMD. He seems to think he can just carry on as before, as if nothing has happened. The vomit-inducing professional liar Campbell is still there, lurking threateningly in the shadow despite having declared he was going six months ago. Yet the simple-minded electorate folk are supposed to fall for this bag of lies and learn to love Tony again. Trouble with being caught out lying through your teeth, no one believes you any more.

His own re-election is merely a reflection of how corrupt the system is; a Prime Minister's constituency benefits hugely from the fact, and locals are hardly likely to vote him out when so many benefit directly from this 'royal' patronage. This way they buy votes to save the embarrassment of having the Prime Minister lose his seat. Banana republic says it all really, except we have no bananas other than those imported from our Caribbean partners who were once part of our empire. No mention was made of international observers during the election, yet if any country was due for close examination it was the UK, with reports of widespread postal-vote fraud even before it all kicked off. I give him till the end of the year, but it could happen much sooner. Voices are already calling for him to resign, and once more find their balls again after keeping them in a drawer for so many years, there will be mounting pressure which will eventually reach critical point and force him from office. Yet Howard showed how it should be done by announcing immediately after the results were in that he would go sooner rather than later.

The upshot of the massive swing to the right which the Labour party has undergone since Blair took over, is that the LibDems are now seen as the radical opposition, left of the new version of Labour [or ToryLite] when they never really intended that, and are still denying it as they fear it will frighten off potential voters from the Tories' ranks. As the shift in Labour has caused the Tories to shift further to the right, it hardly seems worth bothering with a few rabid old Tories in the countryside, and they would be better served aiming for all the disaffected people who believe in social justice and don't feel they are best served by Labour any longer. Old Labour will reassert itself as the build up to oust Blair proceeds, and once he and his cronies have lost power within the party, there's hope of an eventual return to ethical politics, and even the dreaded word, socialism, will be spoken of in political circles again.


May 6 2005
Who's the loser?

Well, NewTory or Blair's Gang lost out heavily, but such is the madness of the UK electoral system that they are still the bloody government, albeit with only 64+ majority. There needs to be more than that of free thinking Labour MPs to keep the mad Bush crony from doing anything too dangerous. My prediction that the LibDems would gain considerably seems a bit wishful, they gained, but not by enough, and the smeggin Tories gained more, which is pretty astonishing considering what a shower they are.

The real loser though is the environment, which didn't figure in any of the main parties' rhetoric, except as a footnote. As usual, they appealed to selfishness and selfishness won. None of these political suits is capable of deep thought, or even having an inkling of the problems we face and will increasingly face. So the so called health of the economy is all that matters, full steam ahead to the meltdown.

Spam is an ever increasing problem and seems to just increase all the time. One way I've discovered recently to fight back is this site http://english-32913517751.spampoison.com/ which gives you a bit of code for webpages, which loads a tiny banner [left of this page, above Archives]. The clever bit is that when harvesting bots visit your site, they are immediately sucked off to theirs where they are bombarded with endless false email addresses, making the lists worthless. Seemed like an excellent idea. I think everyone with a website should use it as these bots crawl webpages and harvest every email address they find. This should at least stop them getting my email address to send endless repeated spams for Viagra, cars and cheap software, currently the three worst offenders. I also found their sites and sent multiple copies of their email back to their customer service and complaints departments [probably all the same person] although this probably won't stop them, but has to at least piss them off checking and deleting them. I shall also keep their addresses and send on any spam I can't find somewhere else to send.


May 5 2005
So will anything change?

I realised fairly late that I was one of these floating voters the media keep on about. I rarely vote, but this time felt I should if only as another brick in the wall of opposition to the vomit-inducing Blair. As this is a safe Tory seat, being rural, there wan't an issue over who would win, so every vote for a Green adds to a total overall which helps make the case for proportional representation. If there had been a chance of LibDem taking the seat, I would have gone with them, despite them being opposed to the fox hunting ban, one of the few black marks against them.

We now wait till late this evening to see how it's turned out, and whther Labour, or newTory as I think of them, have had their dangerously massive majority trimmed down to size, probably all we can hope for.

A picture of a health worker giving a rabies shot to a stray dog at a government shelter on the Thai resort island of Phuket March 30, 2005, from http://www.planetark.com/envpicstory.cfm/newsid/30687 is reassuring, at least some people thought of the others who were affected, not just humans.
Hundreds of such pets were saved by officials and animal rights activists while rescue workers were scouring the Andaman Sea coast for the victims of the Asian tsunami that left 230,000 people dead or missing along the Indian Ocean rim.
I wonder if there's a similar operation going on in Iraq. There must still be dogs who haven't been shot out of hand by the US grunts looking for something to kill. They must all be traumatised and in need of love as well as shots of the medical kind.


May 4 2005
We should all be grateful

The election is almost interesting. No one seems to know what the outcome will be, guesses vary wildly, and it's all resting on the shoulders of a relatively small number of floating voters in marginals. If they all act like sheep, which is normal, there could be a massive slide away from labour, but to who is open to debate. Anyone dismissing the libdems should consider whether they want a two party system like the US. Whichever way anyone votes, the state always wins. No party has ever suggested or attempted reducing the power of the state, and each year the bill for this interference in our lives rises. Much of it is squandered on bureaucracy and wastful grandiose projects, quangos, junkets, expenses and graft. But we should be grateful we have such a wonderful thing as democracy, worth killing 100,000 people in order to bestow it on the survivors. The reality is that barely a quarter of the population are actually represented by the first past the post winner who scoops the jackpot. That's how we got the Thatcher dictatorship and that's how we got the Blair dictatorship. Once they have power, they get people like Campbell in who set about to create a machine of secrecy and disinformation, manipulate the media and thus the rest of the population. The power rush that then comes from the feeling of total control becomes omnipotence which leads to a war.

And so, on the penultimate day, I must predict. It's by all accounts totally open and up for grabs, there's a general poll trend which doesn't gel with how pretty much everyone seems to be saying when asked. I think Labour are going to get a thrashing and a loss of many seats. Blair will probably get in on a reduced majority. The Tories will win some seats from Labour and lose more to the LibDems who will also take some off Labour and end up only a bit behind them. An effective opposition at last. Blair will only last a few months, with pressure mounting to have him impeached, there will be a leadership challenge within the party and Brown will be supported by the majority of MPs and constituency parties, many of whom are so pissed off with Blair they won't have him anywhere near them. He will have to have permanent police protection, just like Milosevic, and will be sued by groups of people including many Iraqis. Once they fall, all the boots come down.


May 2 2005
Wolf/man, time to come to heal

Listening to a new CD called Solitudes by Dan Gibson who I've never heard of. It's a series, and this one is Legend of the Wolf. Flute, oboe, French horn, violins, viola, cello, double bass and percussion, along with wolf recordings, of young in the den, the first hunt, learning to howl. It's beautiful, my only criticism would be that there's too much human-made music and too little of the wolves, my favourite species bar none. Persecuted by the ignorant hominids from early times, they are been driven to extinction in many countries, and are now only just starting to come back with the aid of dedicated people all over the planet, who both recognise the wolf's key position in the ecological balance, and who admire them for their team work, loyalty and intelligence. There are many excellent wolf sites where information can be had. http://www.savewolves.org/ campaign against the continuing killing of wolves in Alaska and just as they were being reintroduced into lower states, efforts are underway to remove the protection from them.

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/wolves/howl.html has samples of wolf vocalisations which is charming and informative. The Wolf Center [US] has lots of information about wolves, and http://www.boomerwolf.com/wolfwrld.htm has more information and maps the links between wolves and dogs. http://users.ap.net/~chenae/wolfhome.html charts the relationship between Indians and wolves and how it changed when white men and ranching came along. http://www.artofwolves.com/ is a site with the work of many artists depicting wolves, beautiful pictures of a beautiful animal.

Restoration of the ecosystem is totally dependent on the wolf, when the time comes for homo sapiens to bow out, the wolf will once again be in its rightful place.

Late breaking news: The Decision Is In: Wolves Win with the Endangered Species Act

On January 31, 2005, gray wolf conservation won a victory when a federal district court ruled that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service violated the federal Endangered Species Act (ESA) when it reduced protections for gray wolves across most of the lower-48 United States. The court's decision ensures the highest level of federal protection for wolves and requires that the government continue its efforts to recover the species throughout its historic range.

http://www.defenders.org/wildlife/new/wolves.html


May 1 2005
Will he plead insanity?

Court cases are being planned against Blair, and he could still end up at the Hague. Once the veneer of power has slipped, those out to save their own skins usually desert, and the rate of collapse increases as momentum carries it along, and more exposes appear before previous ones have been successfully spun. And the more Phony Tony loses his grip, starts to sweat and look scared at press conferences, the more he looks a loser. They could still win the election, but he's fatally compromised and there's no way out. A leadership battle will ensue as soon as the election is over is my guess. Although they will doubtless hang on to enough of their seats to be the majority, they will be severely shaken and nowhere near as cocky as they have been for so many years.

Lots of labour candidates have refused to have Bliars face on their leaflets and have fought their seats on local issues; what a refreshing change. Oh how these people suddenly get humility when their well-paid jobs are at stake.

  

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