Sunday, July 30, 2006

Things could very possibly get worse

I’ve just noticed that someone at a site called Blogdial has picked up on and commented on a couple of posts I wrote last year.

Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to figure out how to register with Blogdial and am unable to comment there. So, I’m jotting down my response here in case the person who commented on my posts stops by again.


One of my offending posts suggested that allowing a big supermarket chain like Tescos to stand for election as a political party would be a most excellent idea. The other post berated the majority of those on the ‘Left’ of British politics for getting so steamed up about something as trivial as the Poll Tax whilst subsequently permitting the ruling Labour party to get away with the most outrageous attacks on our civil liberties, waging wars of aggression overseas and corporatising every aspect of our lives without barely raising a mouse fart in protest.

In fact, I believe I described the majority of British Left Wingers as being ‘wankers’.

Yes, now that I’ve thought about it, I definitely used the word wankers.

And one year on I still stand by every word, including the one beginning with w.


Back when Labour won power in 1997 a close friend of mine said to me ‘One day that creep Blair will be the most hated man in the country. You might not believe me now but he will’.

Actually, I did believe him.

There’s a popular fiction being bandied around now that our current government is making such a mess of so many things, whilst simultaneously oozing arrogance and corruption, simply as the result of it being in power so long.


The New Labour government was bent from the first day it took power.

It’s just taken a lot of people this long to notice.

And the truth is that nothing much will change, whoever takes over from Blair or New Labour.

And the problem for people on the Left is that they fucking well know it.

What’s on offer, whoever is Prime Minister and whichever political party is in power, is the same old shit stretching out into the future as far as the mind’s eye can see…

  • More corporate control over public services and utilities
  • More debt
  • The prospect of one real bastard of a recession just around the corner
  • Endless war
  • The constant promise of ecological catastrophe

The last fear in particular is a globalist masterstroke in my humble opinion. Getting people to shit themselves about oil and gas running out whilst at the same time getting the same people to shit themselves about carbon emissions as well – sheer bloody genius.

I sense a growing feeling that people, particularly people on the Left, realise that they’ve all been had and they haven’t the faintest idea what to do about it or who to turn to.

The chances of there being any post-election celebrity wankfests in the Millennium Dome or masses of duped Muppets singing along to ‘Things can only get better’ in the foreseeable future seem somewhat, er, remote.

From what I can tell from this side of the pond, Americans seem to have the same problem as well.

So, now what are we all going to do?

Me, I’m all for putting Tescos in charge. At least they don't fuck up so often and their ID card system includes discount vouchers.


On the subject of Tony Blair and it not mattering very much who is supposed to be running things at any given time, I was simply thrilled by this article in the San Francisco Chronicle about what Tony and his globalist chums are getting up to this weekend in San Francisco -

Still, what could be the most fascinating event of the schedule will be mostly out of the public eye: Blair's visit to the retreat held by Murdoch, the media mogul. A five-page memo leaked to the Los Angeles Times this week said the very private retreat is being held at the Inn at Spanish Bay in golf-rich Pebble Beach, where attendees can work on their handicaps or hit some of the incredible seminars on tap.

Among the offerings on the list, according to the Times, are "Islam and the West" with (Shimon) Peres; "The Power of One" by Bono; "Meet the MySpace Generation,'' a "live focus group" exploring attitudes of today's youth; a talk on America's political divide by Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz.; nontraditional business approaches by Oakland A's general manager Billy Beane and even a town hall-style gathering presided over by Clinton, who the Times said is appearing gratis -- without the usual $100,000 speaking fee.

What the article doesn’t mention is that the last weekend in July sees the annual Cremation of Care festival at nearby Bohemian Grove where many of the people who manipulate our lives get together, have a few beers, dress up in bedsheets and make mock child sacrifices to a 35ft tall concrete owl god. Unless Tony is planning to have a quiet night in with Cherie whilst everyone else pops off to the party, I’d guess that there’s a reasonable chance he’s standing in front of Mr Owl, dressed like a like a total nonce, round about (looks at watch)… now.

Saturday, July 29, 2006

Luring the Messiah Earthwards with fresh-baked pizza

And the prize for the for the most bizarre Internet site I’ve visited this week whilst reading about the attack on Lebanon must go to…


And its sister site


‘We drive our van right up to the soldiers!’

(There just has to be some scope for a British version – - )

The selection of ‘inspiring messages’ that have accompanied orders from PizzaIDF makes for fascinating reading -

“I hope that the pizzas (hopefully, they are tasty) provide you with a little extra energy and strength when you return to the battlefield and destroy the brutal terrorist enemy.”

“you are the Guardian Angels of Western Tradition and of Light,against the Islamics,the Warriors of the Darkness!! You are the hope of our planet...”

“our tefilot are with you every day, and I pray that hashem should watch over all of you. hasehem should guide you to totally destroy the children of yishmael & esav, and we should see the coming of mashiach now with the rebuilding of the bait hamikdash. our love and prayers are with all of you.”

Truly inspiring and not insane at all.

Now I don’t believe for a minute that the bulk of ordinary Jews around the world have the ‘total destruction of the children of yishmael & esav’ at the top of their personal todo lists but there again nor do I believe that the majority of Muslims hate me for my freedoms.

What I do believe is that bombing the crap out of people isn’t going to solve anything; with or without a side order of garlic bread.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Empty petrol tanks and failing eyesight

Last Thursday morning both the Oval and Kennington tube stations were closed due to an electrical failure in one and, I think, a fire in the other.

The bombings on 7/7 were preceded by a similar spate of station closures and even though there is no proven connection between the closures and the bombings I always get a little nervous when a couple of stations are closed at the same time.

Anyway, I ended up having to use Stockwell Station.

I picked up a free copy of Metro, passed through, not over, the ticket barrier, went down the escalator and got onto a train.

Given that the anniversary of Jean Charles de Menezes shooting was only a couple of days off, I got to thinking, yet again, about all the unanswered questions from that day and the recent news that no one would be charged in connection with his death.

And, as luck would have it, that day’s Metro featured a story that offered a possible to solution to some of those outstanding questions.

The reason why a suspect suicide bomber was allowed onto the Underground and subsequently executed, even though he clearly couldn’t have been carrying a bomb, was because…

The police had forgotten to put petrol in their van!!!

The police unit involved in the fatal shooting of Jean Charles de Menezes was delayed by a petrol stop on their way to Stockwell Tube station, it was claimed yesterday.

The delay may have contributed to the failure to apprehend the 27-year old electrician before he entered the South London station on July 22 last year, a newspaper alleged.

The armed unit was not called into action for four hours even though Scotland Yard knew it was dealing with a suspected suicide bomber, it was claimed. Had it not been for this, the delay as the team stopped for refuel, and bad traffic, Mr de Menezes could have been arrested as he crossed open ground near his home in Tulse Hill, a report said. Officers would been unlikely to adopt a shoot-to-kill approach if that was the case.

They would have been able to spot that their target's clothing was unlikely to be concealing a bomb. Officers would also have been aware that mass casualties were unlikely in the open air, the Evening Standard claimed.

Nonsense like this is in the same league as the story that de Menezes was originally misidentified as a terrorist suspect because a surveillance officer couldn’t turn on a video camera when de Menezes left home for work because the officer was taking a leak at the time.

That would be a surveillance officer from the SAS-trained Special Reconnaissance Regiment.

And any armchair Rambo who’s read an Andy McNab or Chris Ryan novel knows that the SAS take a perverse pride in sitting in observation posts for weeks on end, slowly marinating in their own juices rather than taking their eye off their mark or giving themselves away.

The Metro article didn’t even start to explain how forgetting to put petrol in the van or having to go off for a piss could result in scrubbed CCTV tapes, faked surveillance logs, smear stories about innocent victims being leaked to the press, or having your boss going on national television and tell huge, ginormous porkers.

As far as I can tell, possible explanations for what happened that day essentially boil done to one of two scenarios -

The shooting was an innocent mistake and our police really do drive around without petrol in their vans, take a breezy, devil may care attitude to terrorist surveillance, mistake the words ‘stop him’ for ‘shoot him in the face seven times’ and generally run around the City with loaded firearms not knowing what the fuck they are doing.


Something much darker took place that day and the people behind it are so arrogant they couldn’t be bothered to even cover it up properly.

Maybe these questions will be answered when the report of the speedy and independent investigation we were all promised last July is finally published. Only we have to wait a wee bit longer as it won’t be published until the start of next year at the earliest because it can’t be released until a bullshit Health and Safety case against the police goes to court.

By which time maybe the speedy and independent inquiry and inquest into Princess Diana’s death might also see the light of day and maybe someone might get round to doing a speedy and independent inquest into David Kelly’s death or, perish the thought, even the 7/7 bombings as well.

I honestly don't know if our country has always been this bent and I've only just started noticing or if something really has changed over the last few years. I really couldn't say.

For some reason the line ‘Just like a banana republic, but without the bananas’ comes to mind.

Sunday, July 23, 2006

The Best of the Grauniad pt746

Democracy in action

In response, I think, to my last post bemoaning the state of British ‘democracy’ a friend sent me an email reminding me of the They Work for You website which allows you to track your local MP’s background, voting record and contact details. He also copied me into the email he had sent to his own local MP which started off like this…

Having been born in the 60s I grew up thinking all the world's problems were soon to be solved. I still carry a large chip on my shoulder after being lied to by hippies. Currently all shades of utter hell are breaking out in Palestine. What is you position? Is there anything to be done to get Mr Blair's government to see sense and join the rest of the world community in backing calls for an _immediate_ceasefire_…

I confess that I haven’t got round to writing to my own elected representative. There’s not much point really. Even though she is theoretically a Labour MP, she votes and speaks against most of what Blair gets up to anyway. That’s when she can spare time from being chairman of the Countryside Alliance and be bothered to turn up to parliament.

I suppose that’s better than appearing more frequently and voting against your conscience as the majority of her fellow Labour MPs appear to be doing. It seems that nothing, and I mean nothing, is more important to them than staying in power. And no matter how berko Blair and Co’s behaviour may be the bulk of Labour MPs have played along like the good little whores that they are.

It's all quite confusing really. Should I vote for my local Labour MP because she is opposed to many Labour policies that I am also opposed to? Or should I not vote for her as her winning a seat counts towards Tony Blair becoming Prime Minister and pursuing the policies she and I don't agree with?

What with our fucked up, unrepresentative voting system and those spineless MPs in our governing party, the separation between my poxy little vote every five years and the actions of the country I live in has never seemed so great

Still, you’ve got to admire the strength of character of a leadership that presses on, regardless of what its electorate or even the rest of the World may think.

Who needs democracy anyway when you are governed by people of that kind of stature?

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Most apposite Lawrence of Arabia quote of the week

Me, your Highness? On the whole, I wish I'd stayed in Tunbridge Wells.

Runners up include:

Look, sir, we can't just do nothing.
Why not? It's usually best.

Does it surprise you, Mr Bentley? Surely, you know the Arabs are a barbarous people. Barbarous and cruel. Who but they! Who but they!

A man who tells lies, like me, merely hides the truth. But a man who tells half-lies has forgotten where he put it.

No, they're still there, but they've no boots. Prisoners, sir. We took them prisoners; the entire garrison. No, that's not true. We killed some; too many really. I'll manage it better next time. There's been a lot of killing, one way or another. Cross my heart and hope to die, it's all perfectly true.

Well, General, I will leave you. Major Lawrence doubtless has reports to make upon my people and their weakness, and the need to keep them weak in the British interest... and the French interest too, of course. We must not forget the French now...

I can't make out whether you're a bloody madman or just half-witted.
I have the same problem, sir.

Fingers crossed. Hopefully the Royal Navy will be able to whisk out all the British Nationals in Beirut before one of them gets blown to bits, makes the front pages and people start to ask ‘Why is our government sitting back and doing nothing to stop this fucking insanity!!?

We wouldn’t want that to happen would we.

As long as it's only 'rag heads' getting killed we can keep well out of it. And if the situation ever settles down again we can send our people back in there as if nothing ever happened.

The hypocrisy of this entire business; from our politicians, from the media, nauseates me.

How can anyone, in Israel or elsewhere, honestly or sanely believe that bombing a country into the stone age will make the world a safer place?

And I fear that at some point down the line we may all end up paying for what is being done, and not done, in our name.

I feel ashamed.

But, hey, I live in a democracy so there must be something I can do, however small, to influence the actions of my government.

Yeah, right.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Ready for The Rapture

The Lebanon…


Oh dear

It doesn’t look good does it?

Which is surprising really. After all, blasting the crap out of a country virtually powerless to defend itself by conventional means is such a sure fire way to stamp out terrorism.

Just look at Iraq.

Maybe the Israeli government just needs a little bit more time for its tactics to work. After all, it has only been pursuing its current strategy since 1948.

And as for expanding the conflict to include Syria and Iran, game on I say. I’m one of those people who was frankly a little disappointed at the British government’s response back in the 1980s and 1990s when NORAID was funding and supplying arms to the IRA. If only our leaders had had the moral strength to nuke Boston, Chicago and New York, the Troubles would have ended overnight and everything would have turned out just fucking peachy.

And even if, in spite of all reasonable expectations, waging war against a billion desperate people who believe in an afterlife doesn’t quite work out, that’s good too. Well, according to the folks at the Rapture Ready bulletin board anyway. They seem positively ecstatic at the prospect of Armageddon.

It’s definitely what Jesus would have wanted.

PS I am mad

Sunday, July 16, 2006

Sir Ian Blair IS Cobra Commander

Following on from my earlier post about the sinister connections between our security services and the toy industry, thanks to Daniel for pointing out the striking similarities between Metropolitan Police Commissioner, and all round spare part, Sir Ian Blair and ruthless terrorist leader Cobra Commander

Sir Ian Blair

Cobra Commander

And if anyone is thinking that the similarity is coincidental, remember Sir Ian is a member of Cabinet Office Briefing Room A, responsible for national security in times of crisis, including terrorist attack. So as well as looking like Cobra Commander he is a Cobra Commander.

Don't say you weren't warned

Saturday, July 15, 2006

The UK Customer Loyalty Card - an idea whose time has come

Immediately after posting that last ramble, I found myself pondering upon a throw-away line I included about a National Loyalty Card.

It’s actually not a bad idea

After all, what would the take-up for supermarket loyalty cards be if they were marketed in the same way that the National ID Card has been?

The National ID Card concept is currently all stick and no carrot.

Instead, how about some special offers on welfare benefits, bonus points for respectful behaviour, being bothered to vote or denouncing a Muslim, a quarterly mailing of tailored public service discount vouchers based on database records of your lifestyle, VIP lounges in prisons and hospitals for ‘frequent fliers’ and free to enter competitions with dream holiday prizes?

Properly executed, a mould-breaking concept like that could change the very nature of citizenship

It’s a bloody winner I tell you


And off the back of that line of thought, a few minutes Googling yielded a couple of amusing links:

  • A great big stack of sites selling disturbingly authentic-looking fake ID cards. Of the sites I looked at, this one was the best/ worst. University of West Wales anyone?

Balls-Ups Stitch-Ups and Cover-Ups

This has been a most peculiar week when it comes to news stories about issues that I’m personally concerned about.

In the space of a few days we’ve seen:

And that’s just a selection of highlights

The sheer volume of balls-ups, stitch ups and cover-ups going on right now is truly awesome.

An imaginative person could even conclude that some important people have lost the plot whilst other important people are coming up with some new plots behind the scenes.

The exchange of leaks between the IPCC and CPS over the Stockwell Shooting is particularly woeful. The IPCC/ CPS have, for reasons unknown, patently been sitting on the report for as long as possible and only getting off their arses to preempt the anniversary of the shooting next week. A key finding of the report was leaked ahead of its publication, followed tout suite by a leak from the CPS saying that the recommendation will not be followed up. All of this coming ahead of any hard, attributable statements or information.

This is an example of news and public expectation management at its slimiest. And, at the end of all of this, we will still not really know what happened that day.

Answers to simple questions such as…

And the biggie…

  • Why did the police execute a ‘suspected suicide bomber’ when he clearly wasn’t carrying a bomb?

… have not been answered and more than likely never will

People calling for an independent inquiry into 7/7 please take note

Still, it wasn’t all doom, gloom and unpunished public executions last week

Lord Levy’s arrest was bloody funny for a start.

Of course, it would have been even funnier if they’d kept him locked up for 28 days without charge.

And David Blunkett blew the irony meter off the scale when he said the police should be "thorough rather than theatrical".

Yup, there were no theatrical arrests when David Blunkett was in charge of the police, no sirree

The cash for peerages thing does seem a little overblown though. Everyone knows that this has gone on since the year dot and, being a big Capita fan myself, cash for public contracts seems to be an altogether more serious potential issue that no one seems willing to run with.

Still, I am mindful of the fact that Al Capone was finally locked up for tax evasion rather than wholesale murder. So maybe history will repeat itself and Blair will finally come a cropper over something as mundane and relatively trivial as cash for peerages rather than that, er, 'unfortunate' war thing.

And then we’ll get another globalist-owned front man who people will take another ten years to rumble. By which time maybe we’ll all be taking out mortgages to pay our utility bills and privately contracted firearms specialists will be selectively executing anyone found not carrying their national loyalty card.

The other big giggle of the week was the deportation of the ‘NatWest 3’. They’ve received plenty of sympathetic media coverage including videos of heart-warming family scenes in David Bermingham's household; presumably designed to convince us dumb fucks out there that he’s human like us and not an investment banker. (Hint for Bermingham’s PR person – next time, try to skip the scenes showing just how bloody enormous his house and grounds are)

I cried so much whilst reading this Bermingham human interest piece in particular that I almost fainted from dehydration.

The House of Commons has expressed its outrage at the deportation, as has Liberty Director Shami Chakrabarti; you know the photogenic one who’s on TV a lot, who’s quite selective about which civil rights issues she speaks out on.

Yes, all of a sudden, all sorts of public figures and organisations have discovered that shipping off British citizens to uncertain fates in other countries is a pretty ropey thing to do

Well spotted

And once more the irony meter gets blown off the scale

Still, given the rather short life expectancy of key Enron witnesses maybe a few years in a US jail with nothing but a cellmate called Bubba and a bottle of vegetable oil is the best place for the NatWest 3 – after all, better sore than sorry.

OK, the acid test of one’s beliefs occurs when you are called to defend your beliefs, even if that means supporting people you dislike. The extradition treaty with America that enabled the deportation of the NatWest 3 is clearly unfair and shouldn’t be enforced.

Hypocrisy, however, does have its attractions

Fuck ‘em

Thursday, July 13, 2006

The brothel keeping school of hospital management

Can anything compare with sunsets over empty hospital car parks?

Aside from photographing painted chewing gum on the streets of North London, I’ve also spent a fair bit of my time this week chatting with Macmillan nurses.

Lovely people that they are, having one of them appear at the foot of your bed, or a loved one’s bed, can hardly be described as a welcome occasion. Short of someone coming into the room dressed in a black hood and carrying a scythe they’re the surest sign that all is not as well as it could be.

Yet for people who spend their working life dealing with incurable illness and pain they somehow manage to stay remarkably positive

I’m a big fan of nurses in general

And not just because they represent a potentially cheap date with a high gross-out threshold.

I simply just can’t believe that they exist.

I mean who would do what they do, for the hours that they work, for the money that they are paid?


It certainly takes all sorts to make a world and speaking as someone who is not the nursing sort I am profoundly grateful for that

I only mention all of this because after one of my regular marvelling at the very existence of nurses sessions earlier this week I happened to be flipping through a discarded newspaper and read a story about this man…

Jowell's husband left isolated over tax evasion case

OK, that was last week’s news and this week’s fish and chip wrapping paper. But I couldn’t help thinking, given my immediate environment, that just one greasy £350,000 bribe to one greasy little husband of a Labour cabinet minister was equivalent to what a nurse would earn in something like 15 to 20 years.

It’s contrasts like that which have totally blown any faith I may have ever had that what people earn is in any way based on their abilities, or supply and demand, or any of the other crap like that which people, usually higher earning people, cling to.

To my knowledge there is no national shortage of greasy little creeps willing to lie through their teeth to protect billionaires or cheat their way out of their own personal tax liabilities.

But we’re so hard up for nurses in this country that we’re stripping Africa, the Caribbean, the Far East and Eastern Europe of their own much-needed medical staff.

Yet we still pay our nurses fuck all money

And this is in spite of the fact that we have never spent so much money on our Health Service

Of course, there are counter arguments to explain why nurses earn bugger all and grease spots like David Mills earn a fortune. One strain of thought goes along the lines of ‘Nurses take satisfaction from their work in a way that someone like a tax evasion lawyer never could. In effect, the high pay is compensation for living a wholly irredeemable and miserably worthless existence’.

Well, in that case people like Mills and his ilk are arguably grossly underpaid


So anyway, there I am sitting every day in a London hospital. A hospital paid for out of public money but owned by a private company under a PFI deal. A hospital where the patients’ food is trucked in from 150 miles away, by which time it has turned to mush. A hospital where I can’t sit in some of the public areas whilst the snack bar concession is open unless I’ve bought something from it. A hospital where it costs a minimum of four quid to park a car when visiting a sick person. A hospital where zombified nursing staff routinely work double shifts and still have to get the night bus home or weave through night-time traffic on mopeds because they can’t afford more secure or reliable transport. And I keep asking myself…

Where has all the fucking money gone?

And some of the stories I’ve heard from some of the overseas nurses about the promises made to get them over here and the tricks played to cut them short of a grand or two in pay once they arrive…

They’re basically the same stories I’ve been told about recruitment of teachers from overseas. There’s one headmistress I’ve heard of who would regularly go on recruitment trips to South Africa and Australasia, in term time, and basically assure young teachers that Tower Hamlets was a fantastic place to live, that the school environment was not particularly challenging and that their pay would go a long way even if they weren’t fully qualified by British standards…

Oh dear. That’s hardly sporting behaviour is it.

Fans of Wild West history or the TV show Deadwood will be familiar with legendary saloon owner and brothel keeper Al Swearengen. I mention Al because he was famous for, amongst other things, his distinctive approach to personnel recruitment…

Al Swearengen recruited women from the east by advertising jobs in hotels and promising to make them stage performers at his theatre. Purchasing a one way ticket for the women, when they arrived, the hapless ladies would find themselves stranded with little choice other than to work for the notorious Swearengen or be thrown into the street. Some of these desperate women took their own lives rather than being forced into a position of virtual slavery.

Maybe some of the consultants helping to siphon off the countless billions from our health and education budgets are big Al fans too.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Official 7/7 timeline turns out to be bollocks – fancy that

Unfortunately, I’m way too knackered right now to properly comment on either the titanic exchange of comments between Frank O’Dwyer and various members of July 7th Truth a couple of posts back OR this surprising snippet of 7/7 related news-

The home secretary has asked police to explain why a mistake was made in the government's version of what happened on the day of the London bombings

Postman Patel has blogged the news with a couple of links and comments that I don't feel any need to repeat.

The surprising part for me is not that the Official 7/7 narrative contains at least one ‘mistake’, I’ve known about that since it was published. The surprising part is that the Home Secretary and Police have felt obliged to acknowledge it. And obliged must surely be the word. Unless you feel comfortable believing that after what must have been one of the largest investigations in British criminal history it took the police 12 months to find out which train the 7/7 bombers took into London. Yesterday was the first time that there has been any hint from official sources that the train we've been repeatedly told carried the bombers didn't actually run.

A few hazy thoughts snatched from the jaws of extreme sleep deprivation…

  • Congratulations (again) and a concerned citizen's thanks to Bridget Dunne for tirelessly pushing this issue. As far as I can tell she tried just about every conventional option available – writing to police, politicians, public servants, filing press complaints and getting comprehensively blown off by all of them. Chalk this up as a success for the ordinary person and the Internet.

  • If anyone thinks that this is the end of the matter, think again. Even with a revised train time, the official account of 7/7 is still largely unsupported by anything approximating to hard evidence and whiffs something awful

  • And bear in mind, ahead of any attempts to rationalise the ‘revised’ train time, that the four 7/7 bombers were supposedly packing rucksacks filled with TATP – The Highly Tetchy Mother of Satan - on a summer’s day and were unlikely to be sprinting anywhere. Now if they were packing military explosives, like we were first told, they’d be no such concerns. But military explosives are, of course, conspicuously traceable

  • Can we please have an independent fucking inquiry into 7/7 now?

and PS, if you read this Frank thanks for that engaging with the July 7th Truth folks over the weekend. As limp as it may sound, critical but constructive dialogue warms my heart it does

High Art in High Barnet

I’m currently spending much of my time shuttling between my own bed and a chair next to someone else’s bed in a hospital in High Barnet, North London.

Anyone who knows Barnet will appreciate that the walk from the tube station to the hospital does not come anywhere near the top of the Interesting Ways to Spend 15 Minutes of Your Life Scale.

Or at least I thought so, until a couple of days ago when I started noticing peculiar things like this on the pavement...

Thanks to Rahid’s Flickr photoset and a couple of links he’s posted there, I was no stranger to North London acrylic chewing gum art but it was still a treat to find my own little stash of examples. I almost look forward to the walk now. I don’t even mind it when people start looking at me like I’m a lunatic as I’m crouching down on the floor; with my camera and nose three inches from the pavement.

I’ve bagged ten so far

Kudos to Ben Wilson, the Don of Painted Gum. He may be madder than a sack of ferrets but he’s brightened up at least one sad person’s day.

Saturday, July 08, 2006

Second dodgiest tape off the Internet of the week

I got home late last night after a very difficult day dealing with the fallout from some very bad news about someone very close to me.

So, in spite of my single-tracked blogging mind of late, the actual anniversary of 7/7 passed me right by

I did, however, notice a fair bit more space than usual on the Tube this morning.

Anyway, I was just spending a few minutes catching up on the day's news before going to bed when I came across a couple of articles describing a tape aired by the BBC yesterday .

Ominously echoing the message of the Shehzad Tanweer video from a couple of days back, the spokesman on the tape told us that there were numerous other active Islamic terror cells within the UK, that sooner or later they would overwhelm our security forces and that another successful terror attack on London is virtually inevitable

The person speaking on the tape was, of course, Sir Ian Blair, Head of the Metropolitan Police

Maybe I'm being old-fashioned here but isn't it the terrorists' job, not the police chief's, to try and get us all to shit our pants?

So, what have we learned about our government and security forces’ approved national strategy for defeating the threat of Islamic terrorism this week?

  1. We should all be very afraid
  2. We should trust both Blairs, Ian and Tony, implicitly and let them do whatever they believe to be necessary to save us from annihilation, without any scrutiny or complaint
  3. We should all be very afraid some more
  4. Anybody who has an issue with the balls up in Iraq is nursing a false sense of grievance and should be considered a supporter of terrorism
  5. and… garnish with a fresh sprig of even more delicious fear

Yup, the Blitz Spirit is clearly alive and well and if we stick with Tony and Ian we’ll all be frying bacon sarnies in Tehran by Christmas.

Which is great news as I could swear they didn’t know what the fuck they were doing.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Dodgy Al Qaeda Tape off the Internet of the week

So, another 7/7 confession tape has ‘emerged’ from cyberspace

This time starring Shehzad Tanweer

And what an impressive example of the fine art of the Dodgy Al Qaeda Confession Tape Off The Internet it is:

  • Asian Bloke – tick
  • …with beard – tick
  • Promises of more attacks to come – tick
  • bigger attacks - tick
  • Images of brown people fiddling with test tubes – tick
  • Shot of bin Laden – tick
  • Clip of crazy 'towel heads' dancing around shooting off AKs – tick
  • Unknown man ominously circling London landmarks on a map - tick
  • Conveniently timed to shore up government agenda - tick

There's no way that I can honestly be sure if the tape is real or a fake

Hardcore sceptics will suspect some kind of manipulation behind its production. There certainly has been enough time. And its content and timing are almost entirely ‘on message’ from our government’s point of view. Well, except for the reference to Iraq and Afghanistan but, arguably, that adds a nice little touch of authenticity to the entire exercise.

On the other hand, the majority of people would presumably disregard the tape’s dodgy provenance and exceptionally War on Terror friendly content and ask 'what more evidence do the sceptics need?'

(That’s a question I ask myself a lot by the way)

Personally, I still can’t shake the sense that there is something seriously wrong about the entire 7/7 business. I could rattle off a list of outstanding issues but the folks at July 7th Truth have already done a pretty good job of that.

But, putting all that to the side for a moment, even if I had 100% faith in the official narrative of 7/7 I’d still have a major issue with how our government, police and media are behaving. And it all boils down to a straightforward line of questioning…

What are the people behind this tape, and all the other tapes, looking to achieve? How do they expect us to react? Are we playing their game? And if we are playing their game is that a particularly clever thing to be doing?

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Sites that I have been visiting recently

Handily sorted by category…

Gift Ideas

The Jesus Pan – it’s a miracle!

The ‘Daddle’

Bespoke Wheelie Bin Covers

Surveillance Society

Gallery of vandalised speed cameras

DIY Thought Screen Helmet assembly guide

Ready made EMF safety garments (the VDU Safeguard Apron looks like a ‘must buy’)


Cats that look like Hitler

Neuticles – offering an extensive selection of replacement nads for neutered cats


Melanie Philips blog - compared to which, sites featuring cyborg cat testicles and instructions for making alien abduction-proof helmets seem quite lucid and restrained