United Kingdom

The land of the free?

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First they came for our dogs and I said nothing because I didn’t have a dog.
Then they came for our cats and I said nothing because I didn’t like cats.
Then they came for our education system and I said nothing because I didn’t have children.
Then they imposed Sharia Law and I said nothing because I was a woman and my place was under a Burqa.

 

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Photo Of The Day

Photo: Fred Morley A man carries the milk over rubble in the streets of London while firefighters battle the aftermath of the 32nd straight night of bombing.

Photo: Fred Morley
A man carries the milk over rubble in the streets of London while firefighters battle the aftermath of the 32nd straight night of bombing.

The Milk Must Get Through!!

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The Evolution of Marriage

mrge01

When Gay marriage was being debated marriage itself came under the spotlight. All of a sudden we were asking ourselves..

What is marriage?

Is marriage about children?

Is marriage a religious institution or a secular one?

I wondered about the origins of marriage, the purpose of marriage and how it has evolved from the past to what we recognise as marriage now.

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New victims emerge as Rolf Harris moved to new prison

Rolf Harris has been moved to a new prison because he was getting the bash.

Harris has reportedly been moved to a another UK prison for his own safety after being bullied by other inmates.

The 84-year-old Australian entertainer is serving five years and nine months after being found guilty of sexually assaulting four girls and had been housed at HMP Bullingdon in Oxfordshire.

But UK newspaper The Sun reports Harris has now been moved to Stafford jail, considered to be a “soft” prison, after being taunted by fellow inmates.

“They were keen to take him down a peg or two,” a source told the paper.

“He was moved to another prison for his own safety about two weeks ago.”

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Health nazis complaining about dirty politics

The health nazis are complaining about Dirty Politics.

Apparently it is wrong to challenge them and their gilt edged troughs.

They are even whining in the UK where a massive moan has been published in the British Medical Journal.

Online attacks on public health advocates have been condemned in the British Medical Journal, with New Zealand cited as an example of dirty tricks campaigns.

In an opinion piece in the publication Martin McKee, professor of European Public Health at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, cited tactics described in investigative journalist Nicky Hager’s book Dirty Politics book as strengthening suspicions that large corporations were helping fund internet trolls.

While some online critics were the sort of people “who in the past might have spent their days on a soap box in the marketplace” others were “professionals, paid by large corporations to attack others,” McKee said.

Dirty Politics alleged links between Prime Minister John Key’s office, National Party politicians and party-linked figures, and WhaleOil blogger Cameron Slater. It was based on emails and Facebook posts hacked from Slater’s computer.

Hager’s book also made allegations tobacco, food and alcohol companies were paying Slater.

Companies engaged public relations consultant Carrick Graham, the son of a senior National Party politician, who reportedly paid Slater $6555 a month to promote his clients’ interests on WhaleOil, and attack those whose work threatened his clients’ interests.

Slater has previously denied any claims that he was paid for content.

McKee said advocates of public health policies were paying the price of speaking out, and big corporations were funding campaigns to undermine them.

“Most of us soon realise that this is the price to be paid for taking a stand and refuse to engage with our attackers, whose main aim seems to be to provoke a hostile response that they can ruthlessly exploit,” he said.

Attacks of this nature were not limited to New Zealand, but had also been made on British public health professionals, particularly those active in tobacco control, he said.

So the paid troughers who push their pet projects are not allowed to ever be criticised?   Read more »

A whole club sandwich of wrongness, made up of many delectable layers of stupid

Len Brown is pushing through a ratepayer subsidised cycleway across the harbour bridge. There is no way his proposal will ever pay for itself and he is pandering to about 5 cyclists on the North Shore.

But whatever happens there don’t let him see this proposal from London, for a cycleway on the Thames.

The odds were tough, but we did it: London has just come up with what must be the silliest cycling infrastructure idea in the world. Put together by a motley group called the River Cycleway Consortium, London is fielding a new proposal for a new central cycle path that will stretch eight miles and cost £600 million ($965 million) to construct. Quite a lot for a pair of bike lanes, isn’t it? Ah, but these are not ordinary paths. These babies would float. On the River Thames.

The answer to London’s cycling problems, the consortium argues, is a bobbing pontoon strung along the Southern side of London’s river. This aquatic cycleway would stretch from Battersea, just west of Central London, to the newish business district to its east at Canary Wharf, protected by what appear to be waist-high walls. Given the construction cost of over $65,000 per yard of path, using the cycleway wouldn’t be free. Cyclists would need to pay a £1.50 ($2.40) toll before entering.

And then perhaps the best sledge of all time:

The proposal isn’t just wrong. It’s a whole club sandwich of wrongness, made up of many delectable layers of stupid.

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Proper national level weapons grade sledging

 

Kevin Pietersen has written a book about his time playing cricket for England.

It sounds like it is really just a big long-winded TL;DR whinge and a sook.

For someone with South African heritage he really comes across as a blouse, moaning about sledging and bullying.  Read more »

Photo Of The Day

Photograph by Robert Wilson "They were looking quite bedraggled," says Wilson."And while they were having a debrief, I noticed they had this thousand-yard stare".

Photograph by Robert Wilson
“They were looking quite bedraggled,” says Wilson.”And while they were having a debrief, I noticed they had this thousand-yard stare”.

Bringing The Front Line To UK Streets

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Bird mincing wind turbines are now killing umpteen bats

I hate wind farms, they are unsightly, make a huge noise, kill migrating birds and use huge quantities of rare earth metals making them not green at all…on top of that they are dreadfully inefficient and only work with huge government subsidies.

To cap all that off, they are also now killing bats.

Endangered bats are being killed by wind turbine blades because the air currents are similar to those near tall trees, a study shows.

It’s feared the legally protected mammals are dying while hunting insects that are attracted by the heat generated by the spinning blades.

Thousands of bats have been killed by wind turbines causing a population decline that could cost the farming industry billions each year.

The nocturnal creatures are welcomed by farmers across the world as they eat large numbers of insects that usually damage crops.   Read more »

Using tax cuts to revive the economy – How the poms see NZ

The opposition likes to talk down the economy and the government, yet New Zealand has recovered faster than the rest of the world from the global financial crisis, without the need to slash and burn.

Our economy is the envy of the world.

Even the Poms see that:

In New Zealand, John Key’s National Party romped home to victory on a platform of cutting taxes and balancing the budget, trouncing a Labour opposition that promised to put up taxes. Slashing the top rate of tax has revived the economy, and been rewarded with electoral success as well. True, there are lots of differences between New Zealand and this country. And yet the truth is, there are a fair few similarities as well – and if tax cuts can work there, they can work here.

For a small place a long way from anywhere, New Zealand has a fine history of leading the way with radical experiments in economics. While we were battling over Thatcherism, and the Americans were debating Reagan-omics, the Kiwis had “Rogernomics”, created by the Labour finance minister Roger Douglas. What had been a very 1970s, state-dominated mixed economy was swiftly transformed under Douglas into a laboratory for free market ideas. Financial markets were deregulated, the money supply was brought under tight control, the currency was floated, and industries were privatised. It was a mix that was to become orthodoxy by the 1990s, but Douglas was implementing it while our Labour Party was still planning to nationalise the top 100 companies.

Now it is doing it again – except this time without any encouragement from the US or the UK. Ever since the financial crash of 2008, even centre-Right governments have followed a very narrow path, buying into high taxes, and near-zero interest rates, and allowing budget deficits to balloon, even when financed by printed money, to keep the economy afloat. No one has strayed far from the orthodoxy. Except, that is, New Zealand.

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