Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Town to Change Name?

When I saw that Lunt in Merseyside wanted to change it's name I wasn't surprised. The people of Southport also want out of Merseyside too.

But no, it's the name Lunt they want changing according to this story. It seems that vandals keep changing the signs to something rude.

Monday, April 28, 2008

The United Nations

If you still have any doubt that the UN is thoroughly corrupt and unreformable then please read this.

Time to abolish it or at least for the UK to withdraw.

Friday, April 25, 2008

US Election

I just had to nick the following from The Remittance Man. If you don't visit this blog, with lovely views too, then you really should.

A Dane’s view of the US elections

We in Denmark cannot figure out why you in the USA are even bothering to hold an election.
On one side, you have a bitch who is a lawyer, married to a lawyer, and a lawyer who is married to a bitch who is a lawyer.

On the other side, you have a true war hero married to a woman with a huge chest who owns a beer distributorship.

Is there a contest here?

Danes have always struck me as eminently perspicacious fellows.

Police State

Police (left) arrest a Londoner for having eyes too close together. Officer Dibble said: "He definitely looks like the type of person that might commit a crime one day!"

Yet another poor innocent is raided by the police at 3-00am, dragged down the nick and locked up for 11 hours. Eventually Officer Dibble blushes, apologises and sends the poor sod home.

Now, far from belittling theft of anything, but is it really necessary to raid the home of somebody suspected of nicking a telly at 3-00 in the morning? I grew up thinking that's the time you raid train robbers' houses, or IRA suspects. In a case such as this why not pop round his house in the afternoon for a chat and a cup of tea, a bit more Dixon of Dock Green than Sweeney. Sadly it seems that the police, with the help of 10 years of New Labour, have lost all sense of proportion. Or are they just a bunch of mindless bastards?

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Letters to the Editor

Being snowed under with elections at the moment, there are no elections in my vicinity but there are elsewhere in the North West of England, time is a bit short. To cut corners I am posting some stuff that has appeared in the local paper recently.

This one may sound fractured, between Fairtrade and the EU, but that was the editing. I did link them more clearly in my original, honest guv!

And this is the response from Gina Dowding, a Green who I was on the council with in Lancaster from 1999 to 2003.

As ever I think the Green response proves my point.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Bob Spink MP

Great news today. Bob Spink MP, former Tory, has joined the UK Independence Party giving us our first Member of Parliament. I particularly agree with his opposition to abortion.

Read all about it!

This is Wheelie, Wheelie Stupid

Members of Cumbria Police's crack Wheelie Bin Squad (left) arrest a council tax payer after being informed that his wheelie bin was an inch higher than allowed on the day of collection. The leader of Copeland Borough Council, Councillor Richard Head, praised the officers for their bravery after the dawn raid that led to the arrest.

But seriously Copeland Borough Council takes the prize for being the biggest bunch of prats and the most useless council in the UK. Some poor sod has now got a criminal record for having his wheelie bin lid raised four inches because it was overfull. If you don't believe it read this.
Of course Dick Head is not the leader of Copeland Borough Council, I made that up. It's actually Councillor Elaine Woodburn who can be contacted on: 01946 820861. Or by email at: ewoodburn@copelandbc.gov.uk
Alternatively should you wish to confirm this story Copeland Borough Council can be contacted on: 0845 054 8600. Or: info@copelandbc.gov.uk

Monday, April 21, 2008

Poor Old Plod

As public confidence in the police plummets this happens. A "crack" unit of Manchester's finest anti-drug police do a dawn raid in Bolton. But instead of finding a sordid den of iniquity they find a poor old dinner lady having a nice quiet brew before departing to feed the local school kids. With a quick "whoops sorry love" they left and, hopefully, headed for the right house. With police being more "dope" than "crack" these days is it any wonder we are fast losing faith in them.

Which reminds me of a sign I saw last week outside a garden centre. It read:

Top quality weed free

I turned back thinking this must be some kind of Howard Marks type legalise cannabis stunt but underneath it continued:

top soil in stock now.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Nice One Banksy

Here is the story of the latest stunt by guerrilla artist Banksy.
As you can see, it is a particularly fine piece of graffiti that involved the artist erecting temporary scaffolding to work on a Post Office depot wall above Oxford Street.
What a class protest.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Back from Rehab

Left is the famous painting by Edward Munch, The Scream. I'm convinced it is actually a painting of an English tourist looking at the prices on a Norwegian restaurant menu.

Having experienced Norway this weekend I can only liken it to some kind of huge rehabilitation centre, a picturesque one but not for the weak, unless you are terribly rich.

We went through the ritual humiliation that is airport security and a few hours later trundled into Oslo, not quite as picturesque as the countryside en route, but still, a new city to explore. The rehab. feeling hits you when you look at the menu in the first 'reasonably priced' restaurant that you have been recommended. Hunger pangs tend to disappear when you see that starters cost £12 or more, and the cheapest wine is over £20 per bottle. So you check that you are converting the currency correctly. And you are. You check that this is actually the 'reasonably priced' restaurant that was recommended. And it is. And so the weekend progressed, with minimal alcohol consumption and massive calorie intake reduction, the driest weekend I've had in decades, rehabilitation!

Apart from the cost, oh yes beer around £7 per pint, Oslo is well worth a weekend, especially the Munch Museum, a touch of irony there, and the Resistance Museum. But I came back with the distinct feeling that airport security confiscating a 125cl bottle of deodorant, because the limit is 100cl, is not going to stop a repeat of 9/11. Afraid airport security is now so oppressive that I no longer wish to go by plane , it's ferries and trains in future.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

The United Nations

For a very long time I have believed that the United Nations is a sham, its existence seems to be solely to give assorted tyrants and unsavoury Third World despots the chance to lord it over the Western democracies, with special venom reserved for Israel.

This article from the Spectator very nicely proves the point. It's about time the whole thing was ripped apart and consideration given to John McCain's suggestion of a League of Democracies. However, I suspect any new organisation would end up just as corrupt and undemocratic as other supranational bodies, such as the EU, so would favour loose alliances as and when we feel they would benefit us.

Who knows, if the Spectator carries on with a line like this, I may even renew my subscription, cancelled after the Cameron grovelling current editor, Matthew d'Ancona took control.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

The Guardian

I want to make it clear that I do not read The Guardian, I think it is vile and patronising. However, I do read The Week which I can thoroughly recommend, and there are usually articles in there from The Guardian.

Yesterday I spent 6 hours on a train travelling to London and back, not for the sheer fun of it but for a work related meeting. As a consequence I read The Week from cover to cover and was appalled to read an article, from The Guardian, by Seumas Milne. By the way the name Seumas is just one of several Celtic versions of James. I can't find an electronic version of the article so here is the gist of it.

Milne argues that the radical left should now turn to religion in order to bring about the change it desires. Previously religions have traditionally backed the state and the etablished order, but times have changed. He cites the Catholic church attacking "savage Capitalism" and urges the left, who have traditionally been atheistic if not violently opposed to religion, that "the Left's struggle should take place within religion, not against it".

Lovely article that superbly highlights the complete stinking hypocrisy and moral bankruptcy of The Guardian, Seumas Milne and Socialism in all its forms.

Monday, April 07, 2008

Yet Another Data Shambles

Thanks to Mark Wadsworth who has this piece, or similar, on his blog.

I have an account with HSBC and have had some really annoying episodes with them. Only last week I threatened to take my account to another bank then remembered, I have tried most banks and they are all pretty abysmal.

This though could be the clincher. Just goes to show that crass incompetence is not the sole preserve of the public sector.


I couldn't resist this one. It is shamelessly lifted from Joey's Pheisty Blog, which is well worth a visit.

Chinese Olympics

In 1938 the England football team were asked to give the Nazi salute in Berlin before a game against Germany. It is still a shameful episode that occasionally haunts English football. Admittedly many people now look back with regret at the naivety of kowtowing in this way to Hitler.
This weekend a collection of sportsmen and celebrities took part in a similar action, this time a sop to the totalitarian dictators who govern China. They did it by carrying the Olympic Torch, on its relay route to China, and did it on British soil.
The Chinese government have called the demonstrations against this abomination "vile". Let's just put their vocabulary down to poor translation should we? Because what is really "vile" is the way the Chinese government subjugates its people, be they Tibetans, Christians or people who are even mildly critical of the regime.
And now that sport as a whole has sold itself to the highest bidder, the President of the IOC called for a peaceful resolution in Tibet, but saved his harshest comments for the demonstrators in London who stood in support of Tibet. His comments about them were: "it is not compatible with the values" of the Olympic Games. Well what about the mass slaughter and attacks on basic freedoms and human rights carried out, on a daily basis, by the Chinese government? How do they fit in with the Olympic ideals?
70 years on we have learned absolutely nothing.

Let Them Eat Cake

We have friends who have emigrated to New Zealand, indeed every week we seem to hear of somebody who has gone to New Zealand. When our friends went we warned that the grass isn't always greener on the other side and guess what? The nutters are rampant over there too.

It seems that the NZ government have now identified a porky problem with their school kids and, in true nanny state style, at least one school has banned kids from bringing birthday cake to school.

You can't escape it by running to the other side of the world I'm afraid.

Saturday, April 05, 2008

An Uplifting Week

I'm far from being sloppy and emotional but every now and then something happens to really renew your faith in human nature.

This week I read Tuesdays with Morrie by Mitch Albom. It tells the story of Mitch Albom's Tuesday visits to his former lecturer and mentor Morrie Schwartz, who is dying with ALS, or MND as it is known in the UK. Over the course of the months Morrie imparts his unique wisdom to Mitch on a range of subjects such as love and human relationships. It would be a hard human who wouldn't be moved by this amazingly touching book. All the more poignant for me as I worked for the MND Associaton from 1996 to 2004, and met so many brave people like Morrie.

Then this morning we shopped in Booth's in Carnforth. If you don't know Booth's they are a small supermarket chain, mainly in Lancashire and North Yorkshire, and they do an amazing range of locally or regionally sourced produce, especially meat and cheese. Anyway, the uplifting part was that there was a group of people in the car park doing free car washes while you shopped. It turns out that they were from Carnforth Free Methodist Church and do it once a month. When Mrs B. offered a donation they refused, telling us that they only did it to help people, not to raise money.

Quite an amazing end to the week.

Friday, April 04, 2008

Another Data Shambles

Here we go again. This time it's Plymouth City Council.

A member of the public found the sickness records of 15 Plymouth City Council staff outside a local pub. Ironically the pub is called the Bar Ha! Ha!

The council have tried to say it's not a big deal but, as personal data should be secure, they are "taking this incident very seriously". Even so the authority claims it "has very strong procedures to protect data and its procedures are constantly under review". God help the people of Plymouth if the procedures weren't under constant review.

As government continues to look at more and more repressive ways to protect us from 'identity theft' it becomes ever more urgent that we protect ourselves from government, be it supra-national, national or local government.

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Mugabe and the European Union

It seems, according to this story, that Robert Mugabe has learned extremely well from the EU. Meaning, if you think you have lost a popular vote, such as a referendum on Maastricht, the Euro or the EU Constitution don't worry, just have another vote and the plebs will get it right second time around.

In this case Mugabe is hoping to have a re-run of the presidential election if he loses. Will the EU have the audacity to criticise him if he does?

Which reminds me of the old joke, that spelling Mugabe backwards reveals his Lancastrian ancestry.

North Wales Plod

What a superb irony in the news this morning. The North Wales police HQ, that haven of political correctness and heath and safetydom, has been on fire. Despite all the health and safety crap it was a mistake by a worker with a blowtorch working on a multi-million pound refurbishment that caused it.

My first thought was to find out if Brunstrom was the guy on the bonfire, but it was only a small fire I believe. But then I thought of a Downing Street petition calling for the worker to be knighted. But then I thought as it was only small he didn't deserve an honour.

Sadly the Traffic Taliban survive to fight another day.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

People's History Museum

The People's History Museum in Manchester is one to avoid when it re-opens in 2009. Initially supported by Labour, the TUC and various Co-Op organisations it is undergoing a revamp and seems to now have a bizarre range of funders it sponges off.

It nestles on the banks of the River Irwell, a river that until not too long ago ran orange with pollution but is now part of Manchester's 'regeneration'. But cross the bridge over it and you are in Salford. Salford is where socialist revisionists now claim that the workers saw off Mosley's Blackshirts in the thirties in defence of North Manchester's Jewish, women and working class populations. The truth is the BUF were so strong in Salford they faced little opposition, had their Northern HQ on Northumberland Street and, when they closed their London HQ, considered Salford for their new national HQ.

What really makes me giggle though, apart from the crass hypocrisy of the left, is the strapline for their little people's museum. It reads: "A Revolution on the Left Bank". How very borgeois, and the Irwell is definitely not the Seine!

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

UKIP's NW Spring Conference

Left is the truck, courtesy of our Tameside Branch, that spent the weekend parked on Morecambe Promenade outside the UKIP NW Spring Conference.

Like Christmas there are months of planning and anticipation then bang, it's over and done. The weekend just gone we had our NW Spring Conference in Morecambe and all the hard work was worth it. There was a very definite feel that this is no longer a single issue party but a full blown party with plenty to say.

On the Saturday we had excellent presentations from Phil Booth of No2ID on why we must oppose ID cards and the database state, Tim Aker from The Taxpayers' Alliance on the scandal of local government waste and Marc Sidwell, of the Adam Smith Institute, on the damage done to the developing world by fair trade. The final outside speaker of the day was a representative of the Lancashire Police Federation, who explained the police dispute with the government over pay and conditions. On Sunday we also had a talk from Sean Corker of Manchester Against Road Tolls who outlined their opposition to charging and satellite monitoring of motorists.

UKIP speakers included Party Leader Nigel Farage, who attacked EU nationalism, and Party Chairman John Whittaker who explained the perilous financial position of much of the Eurozone. Deputy Leader, David Campbell Bannerman, ably outlined his work with our policy working groups and emphasised again our role as a fully fledged political party.

There were also excellent talks from Robert Woods and Lisa Duffy on the growth of Young Independence and a whole host of other UKIP speakers including yours truly, Phil Griffiths, NW Chairman, Fred McGlade, Hilary Jones, Rachel Oxley and the excellent father and son team of Tom and Michael McManus, winners of our first two public speaking competitions.

There was a bumper attendance with excellent company, good food and plenty of drink consumed. A fine weekend was had by all. Now on with the May local elections!