Posts by casablanca

    Just listened to this, but very disappointed with it. Just as it was starting to get interesting, it was over. I would've liked to have learnt a lot more about how programme rights are bought and sold. The Britbox lady didn't seem to have a clue and the BBC presenter was useless.

    what do you expect with Ewan Davies as discussion moderator?!


    I listened to three 5-minute segments spread across the whole discussion and was bored rigid.


    What I didn't hear - and wonder if it was in a patch I didn't listen to - and I wonder what you think of it - is the idea of paying per item streamed, just like an on-line Blockbusters or Sky movie rentals - but without all this crap about having to de-activate then re-activate your monthly membership on a monthly basis, which is clunky and inconvenient. Those who enter into my suggested flexible/ad hoc arrangement will pay up front a modest user membership, say £20 per annum and the streamed items rented would on average about, say, £4 for a movie (and something proportionate for a series (with a cheap escape/get-out after trying two boring episodes). So once these "triallists" are hooked at 2+ movies per week they'd know they're quids in at £6 per month for unlimited streaming. This would refocus Netflix's marketing-plus on market quality and quantity of repertoire, which is its strength. This would surely be advantageous to Netflix with its giant repertoire and who are making profit but have plateau'd at about 50% share. This could be an easier cheaper way for those who haven't yet dipped their toe into streaming or to those who would be interested to check out inexpensively whether the grass is any greener than staying with Sky movies or Prime or some of the smaller streamers. It would enable Netflix to mop up a big chunk of those not yet using them and to suck them in to becoming commited members at £6 per month (with membership increases in the years to come once they're thoroughly "Netfixed".


    What am I missing here?

    It's all distraction techniques just like the clap for keyworkers nonsense.


    Can anyone explain the difference between sitting sunbathing in a park 2 m away from anyone else and shopping in a supermarket 2 m from others

    One is allowed, the other plod will stop

    the difference is that the relative separation distances between people sitting sunbathing in a park is more static/predictable/less variable than the relative than those same people shopping in a supermarket. Think of it as the difference betweeen boats anchored within a given space (eg a bay) versus the equivalent number of dodgem cars in that same amount of space

    Hindus are, or should be vegetarian. In fact all animals are sacred in the Hindu religion. From a personal point of view I don't eat meat, and haven't for the past 56 years. That said, I appreciate the majority of people do. The official reasoning behind the outbreak is a wet market in China. A place where just about any animal they can catch is murdered, gutted, and prepared for sale. Like almost every other world virus, COVID-19 started in China. Whoops, I better stop there, before you call me a racist


    I'm not trying to lecture you. I'm just telling you the way it is. I suspect what I say won't sink in or will be blindly rejected. Because you are unwilling or unable to debate specific points that challenge your own unyielding opinions.


    So no need to read on. I'm content to be just talking to myself.


    When a beaver builds a dam that's beaver-made rather than man-made. I'm sure you accept that. Does that mean it's built by Mother Nature and therefore part of evolution? Or don't you believe surviving is part of evolution, indeed, a prerequisite of evolution? I have to believe you accept that point; only a complete ignoramus would think otherwise.


    Developing the point, when an eskimo builds an igloo, is that man-made? Does that mean that in your strange book, the igloo is not part of survival and hence not evolution?


    And when man builds a house, is that not part of survival (one's home as castle) and hence evolution? What if that house is more than just a mudhut (eg central heating and broadband), does it then become "artificial" and fall foul of your notion of evolution?


    And if man builds anything which advances the concept of survival into stimulation or enjoyment, such as a wooden kite, is that still a form of survival and hence evolution? And if man uses science (which is a product of his curiosity, knowledge and brainpower in harnessing the elements) does this fail your criteria of survival and evolution? You mean a bow & arrow is natural and evolutionary and an atomic bomb isn't? After all, both are man made. And the first and only real use of the Atomic Bomb was for the purpose of survival, albeit with a hideous trade-off.


    As for your blathering on about "enforcement of political doctrine on the species in order to eradicate" and that "nature does not do this but only selects elements that benefit the species", you need to read "On Aggression" by Konrad Lorenz and the "Social Contract - the evolutionary Sources of Order and Disorder" and "The Territorial Imperative"" by Robert Ardrey.


    I don't see what the point is of you reading Origin of the Species if you can't think. You remind me of Woody Allen who said "I went on a speed reading course and then I was able to read War & Peace in just an afternoon .......(long pause) ................ it's about Russia"


    At the very least, if you do nothing else with your simplistic way of thinking, try to think of content rather than just the outer label. Eugenics became an evil label thanks to Nazi Germany but also thanks to America (see https://www.uvm.edu/~lkaelber/eugenics/). But all sorts of things have always been either a force for good or for evil and you need to think more deeply about the things you are trying to think about. If I sound patronizing to an insulting degree, let me confess it is entirely deliberate. I simply dislike or don't have respect for people who are reasonably educated but unwilling or unable to defend their thoughts or opinions except in the most superficial, naive or childish of ways and when they don't like the message they want to kill the messenger (just in case you don't understand, that's a figure of speech).


    I leave you one last thought about Darwin's Origin of Species, which you are so pleased with yourself for reading. Its full title is "Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life". You need to accept that the last part of this title is suggesting more than just eenie meanie miney mo.



    The nub of the matter lies in the last word of that definition: "Desirable".


    Q1: Desirable to whom…..?

    A: To those who don’t want to be knifed or robbed or murdered or have services and entertainment and election candidates (and a host of other things) created and addressed to the present lowest common denominator based on IQ and mental stability


    Q2: Would we want a world of Malis? Heaven forbid. A world full of Jennyanydots? Hell, no.

    A: it’s about exclusions or at least reducing significantly the proportion of undesirables. And if you can’t reach a reasonable conclusion on what you believe to be undesirable then those undesirables must surely include you. And if the undesirables don’t include any of the examples in my answer to Q1 you are an urgent high priority to be eliminated from the gene pool. Let me reassure you: we start with eliminating or downsizing the obvious undesirables. Just like with laws or a constitution, which always need to be reviewed.


    Q3 Plato keen advocate of Eugenics – why didn’t Mali tell you that

    A: He didn’t want to tax you?!


    Q4 Isn’t Eugenics a threat to the “Right to Procreation as a basic human right”?

    A: Yes!. Eugenics is a new human right, to override the previous so-called basic human right. It is designed to give freedom (you like freedom, right?) to people not to have their lives spoilt by dumping garbage or waste material or sub-species or enemies of or impediments to our society.


    Q5 Eugenics would be detrimental to human diversity, eg breed out blacks, queers, left handed people or those with ginger hair

    A: If you are able to remove Japanese Knot Weed from your garden, you reduce your garden’s diversity. All good ideas have to be tackled sensibly. Please try and debate the matter like a grown up. Right now, you sound like a case for genetics!


    Q6 Disrupt millions of years of evolution, attempting to create genetic lines of people "clean" of disorders can have far-reaching effects in genetic ecology of human race

    A: We’re talking of eliminating the rot, not meddling with the genetics. Besides, what we choose to do or not do is part of evolution.


    Q7 Easy to promote such a horrific thing as being nothing more than a desire to create 'nicer people'. But it wouldn't stop there.

    A: The world would grind to a rapid halt if it had to cater to the mentality and planning constraints of dooms-day-ites like yourself.


    Q8 The arguments for Eugenics seductive: eradication of disease.... longer life..... removal of genetically inherited flaws, nicer, more productive people, etc. It goes deeper than that and the consequences are much more fundamental.

    A: Are you planning to reveal anything fundamental or in depth? Because I can’t find it so far


    Q9 The human race, for all its flaws and shortcomings is OUR species. Rich and varied and beautiful. Our differences make us who we are. Our flaws give us the stimulus of a goal to overcome them within the limits set for us by nature and the constraints of society and culture, not the science of mankind.

    A: Based on your last 5 words our world would be without aeroplanes, electricity and another trillion things. Yes, you are indeed a persuasive case for genetics


    Q10 We have developed this far over millions of generations and survived by evolution

    A: Could it be that you think God does the evolution thing, rather than humankind. Eugenics will or could be as much as much a function of evolution as putting extremely stupid people in an asylum ….. and, by the way, not letting them procreate


    I don’t think you understand evolution. It’s not done solely by God or Mother Nature or the fairies

    Eugenics is as unjustifiable as it is revolting. Those who believe in the idea of exterminating masses of people because they do not meet the standards arbitrarily set by another group of people do not belong in this world. Those who believe in eugenics do not deserve the air they breathe.

    i think a family of morons or druggies or violent criminals should not be permitted to procreate as much as a family of intelligent or cultured or inventive people. For a long while the procreation profile has been the reverse of that. We need people who put into society more than they take out rather than the other way around. Rationing procreation on that basis seems to me a no-brainer.


    That's my idea of eugenics


    If you think about it, all standards are set arbitrarily, even The Ten Commandments.

    Now we know what the advice to the government was at the time and why more draconian measures were delayed.


    ( Times link left in for those who subscribe )

    When a senior government member says "we are following the science" what they are saying "I haven't the faintest idea why we're doing that"


    Can there be a better example of the blind leading the blind?


    When Churchill told Beaverbrook to get built more Spitfires he didn't add that you have go through a whole load of time-wasting crap (endless committees, debate, procedures and protocols)

    What does one do or at least think about our goverment who were invited by the EU to participate in a joint procurement or manufacture of ventilators and didn't respond - and when challenged says they never saw the email or that it went astray.


    And what does one do about a media that okays that explanation?


    And is one prepared to believe that the EU wouldn't follow up with an email or phone call asking "did you get our email?"


    WTF is going on?


    ***


    Extract from Huffington post ....


    A [UK goverment?) spokesperson said: “Owing to an initial communication problem, the UK did not receive an invitation in time to join in four joint procurements in response to the coronavirus pandemic".   


    Does anyone have the faintest idea what that spokesman is talking about? What is this"communication problem". Is it a "Cool Hand Luke" type of communication problem? Does "did not receive an invitation in time" mean it got lost at our end or was there was an accidental delay by the EU in sending it? Was that EU delay no accident? Was it really lost at our end or was it deliberately lost for reasons undisclosed?


    In the absence of any explanation, the accusation and suggestion has been made that in this global emergency Boris should have put his Brexit ideology to one side. Has anyone on this forum got a better explanation of WTF is going on?


    Am I the only one in this forum who finds this a confidence-draining expectation of the shape of things to come in the government's contribution to defeating this pandemic?

    I'm tired of trying to analyse misinformation or propaganda and I'm having difficulty distinguishing beween NHS's unquestionably heroic whistle blowers and egocentric publicity seeking whingers.


    Of the nationalised uniformed section of the British population, only the armed forces have the self-respect [sense of discipline and strength of character] to realise that whistle blowing or complaining publicly crosses a fine dividing line, to become viewed as incessant whingeing, which is surely the very opposite of heroism.


    Even when sent into a battlefield ludicrously under equipped, to a deadly Dad's Army extent, soldiers' complaints and grievances are calm and factual, and it is that kind of heroically stoic calmness which dramatises their plight and the deplorable failure and callous irresponsibility of their masters. In that scenario public outrage doesn’t need to be manufactured or whipped up by the media.


    The NHS is let down by too many personal publicity seekers who simply don’t have enough of “The Right Stuff”. When the sentimentally-indulgent, ever-permissive, touchy-feely public is persuaded to open their doors or windows in perfect concert at a prearranged time to applaud the NHS, we are fuelling the NHS’s nationalized egocentricity to a level which sticks in my craw. It's one thing to be a hero but quite another to keep promoting oneself in that [pseudo-innocent] way.


    Does anyone really and truly imagine that the Government couldn't care less if NHS staff are dangerously under-equipped? Most of the government means well, even if it is for egocentric or careerist reasons. But there is a deplorable gap between meaning well and doing well. This gap reflects a typically English trait which is part of our national DNA and largely incurable. It reveals itself as analysing to distraction, destruction and even death, where initiative is smothered by the mindless mantra that “rules are rules”. Such ossification has spawned a top-heavy organisation chart of departments and job functions which become the very antithesis of “getting things done”. It’s a problem with most governments but post-war Britain has taken it to new depths. And media and forums lap up this data pollution.


    In a perverse way the media encourages this, to a heightened degree in national emergencies, splitting into two segments: [1] media with a near insatiable appetite for facts and figures, with which they can barely get to mental grips but are nonetheless served to the equally innumerate public as distracting calming fodder and [2] media looking for statistical or factual nuggets that can be sensationalized [knowingly or unwittingly putting into practice the contents of that famous book by Darrel Huff “How to lie with statistics” which, in turn, subdivides into [i] a Goebbel-like propaganda service that is an extension of the estate agent mentality of the government in power or [ii] is skewed by political bias which is often laughably obvious.


    Perhaps the bottom line of my cynical observations is that the government not only represents the public but is also representational of the public, warts 'n all. So the government, on the one hand, dare not reveal that it is winning the war against cov 19 lest the isolating public loosen the reins of its self-restraint but, on the other hand, dare not reveal that the worse is yet to come, lest the public lose trust and confidence in the government and rebel against the current restrictions, leading to civic unrest and riots. Faced by the twin horns of this dilemma is it any wonder that the information which government peddles to the media is first of all manufactured or orchestrated into an ersatz package prior to public consumption?

    No virus, just by choice of policy the MPs voted to bomb Iraq and slash womens pensions and slash financial support for the disabled while giving themselves massive pay rise and expenses hikes. I just dont get all this crap sympathy for MPs and Ministers.

    I was in the Custody Cells/Unit when a prisoner said to me.. "hey, you aint putting me near no sex offender" ... I said: "well, your charged with sticking a knife in the face of a 19 year old shop assistant, so you tell me how much better you are and why"?

    Who said there was sympathy?


    it's kind of weird if not irresonsible and dumb to carry on in the HoC in such close proximity toone another.


    It's not as if they're saying anything useful on the matter

    what's the point of comparing Britain's high density capital with whole regions? At least compare London's cov19 incidences per 100 with other high-density conurbations, eg Birmingham, Leeds, Manchester, Liverpool, Newcastle, Glasgow. See if density correlates with cov19 incidences per 100 population. I'm sure the data exists for an analysis of variance on many other factors, such as sex, age distribution, travelling habits, car vs public transport usage, prescriptions of different medicine in NHS surgeries (as an indication of degree and type of ill-health), socio-economic class, (particularly distinguishing between white collar and manual/blue collar workers), and so on.


    It's pathetic and pointless of us to try and figure out or hypothesise any patterns from the scant and simplistic data doled out to us from government/media



    .

    Racism, now that's a strong word. I say it should not exist as a word. Why? The word, human beings, human kind, one kind. One kind that comes in various shades of colours, so what. It's impossible to be racist towards another human being the whole idea is insane. To be prejudice /dislike towards a culture or a religion is a whole different issue. My opinion. :)

    You've summed up well the idiotic misinterpretation of racism. Too many British people are too dumb to understand the distinction you have made. That's why political correctness runs amok. I don't see a solution

    I like how the goalposts have shifted yet again too. Remember last week it was all about herd immunity and pushing the peak into late May, early June. Today, the latest guff is that the government want to control the peaks, yes you read that correctly. There will now be more than one peak of this virus and they expect this to carry on for the rest of the year....


    OR


    They could just have a total lockdown. But they won't do that for some reason. X/

    that reason you're looking for could be .....


    1 fear of riots/civil disorder


    2 losing votes if cov19 gets worse


    3 the police would turn a lockdown into something Stalinesque


    4 Britain's perverse preoccupation with freedom and liberty, even when it is instant gratification an permissiveness running amok


    5 Political meetings and studies into British behaviour and attitudes is a relieving displacement activity when the alternative is action


    I find none of these reasons for not locking down

    You are absolutely right. Who would you select? As a parody example of course.. I would not wish to harm another individual.

    But if the following got the Virus I would not lose much sleep:

    Paul Mann - Anna Soubry - all the Momentum committee - Extreme radical LGBTQ and Feminists - Tony Blair -

    The McCanns -

    .........+ ....... late-entry female me-too's, tv interviewers who ask relevant pressing straitforward question and accept a response that is an unrelated speech and bullshit and platitudes, Sadich Khan, that incredibly fat ugly female (with personality to match) Northen Ireland minister who held up Brexit, Bercow - plus another hundred or so

    A wild conspiracy story would be that the Chinese government has a discussion and agrees:


    "let's allow this virus we've just discovered to spread across China because we've got enough doctors and ventilators and surveillance systems to control it with hardly any deaths, mostly just those who were going to die quite soon anyway, and if we hold off for two or three weeks from announcing the virus to the world, there will be a global pandemic and with the West being so badly organised and unable to control their citizens, there will be social and economic meltdown and we can go on a commercial buying spree and have an even greater share of the West's economy and therefore greater global influence and control" .


    Just as wild but where opportunism replaces conspiracy, China will in the next few weeks be in a position to inject money for a controlling share of businesses which are having serious difficulty in financially recovering from their enforced lockdown.


    Thus, same outcome, whether planned or serendipitous


    BTW: is there anyone who is reflecting that the Chinese government's advanced digital surveillance & control of citizens has its advantages and is to be (grudgingly) envied rather than (unthinkingly) rejected? Even before Cov19, the price for British society of over-generous or excessive liberalism and freedom has proved to be very expensive in terms of civil disorder, crime, anti-social behaviour and political and social divisiveness. After Cov19, I can't help wondering if within China's basket of hi tec goodies and expertise for population surveillance and control there might be some we could home produce or buy from them to help Britain achieve at least some discernible shift to the right on the permissive-authoritarian scale. To improve our act we surely don't have to be as ruthlessly and autocratically single-minded as China. Thinking of global togetherness, maybe China will meet the West halfway if the West behaves less like a basket case that is slowly but surely losing its reason for being. Or is such a thought associated with surrendering to the enemy?


    .

    If the point you are making is that I could have chosen someone else instead of Tony Benn?? then so what?


    I was just exchanging opinions with you. A conversation, if you like.



    Hitler is the most famous of all charismatic leaders - it matters not if was an evil bastard or a children’s party entertainer.


    Charisma, good or evil. Fair point. I was unthinkingly and wrongly assuming you would conflate standout with merit. Maybe that’s my background in marketing and advertising, where with brands, so with people, the example being that breaking wind at a dinner party will improve your awareness/standout but not your image. So I automatically assumed you were pining for more heroes in politics. But if it’s standout then I’d throw in to the pot George Brown, Boris Johnson and Donald Trump. If it’s making a difference (good of bad) then let’s throw in Stalin, Lee Kuan, Chairman Mau, Castro, Thatcher, Churchill. There is a fun game to be had in plotting various politicians on a 3-dimensional map of Good vs Bad, Made a Difference vs Ineffectual and Personality/Charisma vs Grey/Non-Entity (it gets complicated when someone like John Major became famous for being such a grey non-entity and Atlee became famous – in retrospect - for his no-nonsense to-the-point simplicity.



    Respect that you deal with topic no matter how much you disagree.


    Just offering a different point of view, that’s all. Not trying to argue. Like to think I don’t have to preface every difference of opinion with IMHO



    I asked in a discussion "What about Cliff Richards - no smoke without fire"!!!! and all five were shocked and personally offended that I dare say that. It was not that they have the right to defend Richards but the level of personal protection they wished to bestow on his behalf. Does the fact that there was five of them against me make them right?


    Hard to judge if they were right or wrong. Of my most hated expressions from the British public at large, close to the top, are “rules are rules” and “no smoke without fire”. For all 5 of them to gang-up on you for saying no smoke without fire is either (a) unusually commendable on a point of principle or (b) group virtue signalling or (c) hostility towards you and hence anything you might say or (d) that all 5 of them were homosexuals. Leaving aside wild card explanation (d), I suspect both of us might often tread a lonely path. I’d rather see myself as Henry Fonda in 12 Angry Men than most of the other members of that jury – although he was rather intellectually condescending and maybe the hero was E G Marshall who was the last but one to change his verdict to not guilty because ultimately he respected an unassailable last-straw fact (nose ridge for spectacles).


    ***


    I fear we've both gone off topic and hopefully Horizon will leave our irrelevances here if we draw a line under it !

    continued from above/....


    13 Why "rebels" like Dr Peterson, Tommy Robinson, Katie Hopkins, etc suddenly have things happen to them?

    13 It’s the price of rebelling. Your so called “things happen to them” suggests government conspiracy to bring them down. I think you need to be more specific otherwise you become a conspiratorial rebel and your argument must be tossed aside. Meanwhile I would suggest that the “things that have happened to them” are the natural consequences of going against the tide of majority opinion.


    14 Why is it ok to have the flu every year which kills hundreds of thousands? Why is it we never see any tangible evidence of those dying or suffering from CV19


    14 Answer to the first question is that the killing prediction before a vaccine is developed is hugely greater. To your second question what do you seek as evidence of dying and suffering ? Watching a person have a death experience lying on a bed that is the same as someone drowning? Or a bunch of medics injecting patients with Pentobarbital either because the ventilator didn’t help or there weren’t any ventilators? Do you think such morbid enlightenment will enable the public to think and act more sensibly? Do you think the public don’t believe the percentage risks of (a) catching CV19 and (b) dying? Do you think the photos of vans in Italy hauling boxes to crematoriums is a creation of the movie industry? Do you think the death rate from transmission of CV19 is not significantly greater than that of a typical flu epidemic prior to the production of a vaccine?


    15 Why is a sneeze, cough, runny nose, headache, symptoms we all get at this time of year, every year, are now matters for which you will be arrested and jailed? The Police and Army now on the starting grid


    15 Because of the massive difference in death toll if those symptoms are related to CV19. Why do you have a problem coming to terms with that? Is it because you can’t bring yourself to raise this rhetorical question: should we regard the above-average susceptibility of the elderly to death from CV19 as this cloud’s silver lining, of hands-off population control? Before answering that, if CV19 became more virulent it could successfully kill those with only slightly-below-average immunity, which could be ordinary people, say 55+. Or do you feel that the accomplishment of today’s society, of more people able to enjoy a longer life, is an aberration?.


    16 Why do the main controllers of the internet have draconian measures to control what we say, arresting people for using "words" rather than concentrating on real crime?


    16 Because the wrong kind of behaviour and attitude is a powerful predictor of crime. Society’s present use of this obvious fact is crude and draconian. Profiling is also effective but has become less crude and discriminatory in recent years. I fear the Government is turning a blind eye to the internet owners’ over-analysis of crime-prediction words & thoughts because it is getting the internet to do the Government’s dirty work. Besides, the police are just as manically over-controlling. I think the other main culprit in these draconian measures is the obsession with Political Correctness which is increasingly devoid of reason.


    17 Why aren’t worst crimes like Muslim rape gangs not pursued for 10-12 years, when everyone in positions of power were aware? Not one politician spoke out.


    17 Ambition, job security, making waves, political correctness, rules & regulations, complaints or discontent from so-called innocent Muslims who are an easily-ignitable tinderbox but ultimately because Britain lacks moral principles or the strength to act on those principles.


    18 Why are serious issues such as our rights to free speech etc not worthy of MSM fighting talk compared with the wide coverage of, say, a famous American Basketball Player killed in a Helicopter crash, etc etc


    18 Because MSM needs to win readers or viewers, to sell more advertising or, in the case of BBC, not lose so many viewers that it may as well close down. Did you really think MSM has a loftier mission, which would necessitate preaching to a near empty church? It’s the MSM columnists and tv discussion panels that sometimes fill that void. But sadly with not enough readers or viewers. As for TV interviewers, where are the Jeremy Paxmans (before he became a caricature of himself) or Brian Waldens (which shows my age!). If you say Andrew Marr or Sophie Ridge I’ll throw up. Andrew Neill is bright but just wants to argue. Emily Maitlis genuinely tries to dig deeper but has to cover too many parts in her programme (with the consolation of not covering too many of her own parts!).


    19 Western World shut down by plan, remit, agenda. Because China is too big economically and Militarily?


    19 I’d say in spite of rather than because of the size of China’s economy and military. Maybe the “shut down” is a trend towards some isolation and independence as an antidote to corruptions and constraints of globalisation.


    20 Why shut down true news when our phones and cameras can and do record crimes and bad behaviour?


    20 I don’t think that is happening very much except on occasion as a deliberate conspiracy.


    21 Has "internet experiment" shot out of control? Have "the people" too much power because we can totally ignore the MSM and literally record truth and put it on the internet – which is real power, to bring down MPs and Ministers and Popes and Archbishops and princes!


    21 I’d say it’s the people who have gone of control, not the internet. There is no basis to assume that MSM is usually fake news and internet news is true news. I.m sure it can just as easily be vice versa. It’s not simply that people have too much power but that also they are dumber or more impressionable or less able to think rationally and objectively, in short, more naïve, or just mentally ill or unstable. All of which is perfect fodder for the internet that subscribes to wild west freedom of speech.


    22 You try recording a soldier or police officer or official now and see what happens! They can now say you were sneezing and refused to self-isolate, and whoosh, you are in prison! This is current law, act of Parliament?


    22 You’re playing around with cause & effect. Why would one record a policeman in the first place? Presumably because he stopped you because you were coughing and sneezing and your response was to record him, which is fair enough but hardly a cooperating response to the policeman’s question: with those symptoms why haven’t you self-isolated? Yes, it’s getting ugly. Corruption has always been a problem with officialdom. As for when there really is sneezing and a belligerent refusal to isolate, what we are then witnessing is an understandable draconian response to a stupid or delinquent Britain. Sadly, it’s also the consequence of not having CV19 test kits.


    23 You are forced by law into (laughingly called) "self -isolation" but your comfort is the internet, so you’re not totally isolated. But who controls your access to using the internet? You will know you have permission via the Communications Acts. It is not an inalienable right as with the American people’s possession of firearms!! They do not need permission to have firearms, it is their birth-right.


    23 I can’t unravel your point here. Why should access to the internet be an inalienable right? Indeed, why should Americans have an inalienable right to own a gun? In both cases society can be significantly harmed by these rights being available to the wrong kind of people.


    24 Where are the messages of hope? Why is Boris not saying "we will win this battle against CV19 and return to normal with a massive injection of financial and physical support to assist everyone to function normally and enjoy a healthy productive lifestyle. Today’s trendy phrase is not "we will win and return to normal", it is "adopt social distancing"


    24 You have invented, selected, misheard or misconstrued statements from Boris Johnson. I think Boris has said the right things. I think you’ll just have to get over the disappointment that he didn’t invite you to be his speechwriter! Besides, I’m sick to death of politicians accentuating the positive. When it comes to politicians, a message of hope is another person’s idea of a meaningless platitude. Personally I would have preferred from Boris and his gang fewer bits of advice or requests and more legal “insistences or else”. But then again, maybe Boris is pursuing a herd immunity among the young, knowing that the old and susceptible will self-isolate without needing to be asked twice. Or maybe he is resigned to the fact there is a significant percentage of Brits who are just misguided, obstinate or plain stupid. Or maybe the obvious reason is that things would be worse if the government prevented or discouraged the non-elderly from going to work to earn a living.


    ***


    Apart from the above, I agree with you!!

    Hi Mal99. In your controlled tirade (#615) are you spouting rhetorical questions or are they to stimulate debate? I’ve abbreviated your various points not to be a self-appointed editor but because of FB's word count limit .


    1 Where’s the Queens Speech?


    She’s has been an over-managed figurehead from her coronation onwards. Programmed for life. Get real !



    2 Why how moronic, grey people become leaders of the West, eg Merkel, Macron, Varadkar, Trudeau, May, Sturgeon, Johnson – etc, while Tony Benn or JFK, Dr King, Gandhi, had personal character and charisma, not hard to see why the world now fuffed up



    2 Democracy = majority = mediocrity. Government leaders are representative of their voters. This straitjackets their politicians’ independence and originality of thinking, otherwise they are voted out of office at the next election. Your heroes of the past reflect a better quality of electorate in those days. “Meritocracy” is seen by today’s predominantly dumb or narrow-minded electorate as a dirty word. Thanks to a really clever campaign and the contributing stupidity of the opposing parties, Boris has sneaked in a degree of meritocracy which might pay dividends. I would not as you do class him in the grey segment. Also, your examples of character and charisma do not in themselves provide the cure for what ails the Western world. Kennedy created the Vietnam war (soldiers pretending to be observers), less character-laden leaders like LBJ, Kissinger and Nixon tried to bring Vietnam to a halt and eventually did, albeit in the end ignominiously. Tony Benn spouted Marxism disguised as social justice but, as for himself, married into lotsa money. Gandhi had a least-is-most charisma but someone else with more authoritarianism might have found a way for India to go independent sooner or with less needless sacrifice. Ironically, India’s present “grey” right-wing leader might be the key influencer to prevent India having the Muslim problem that exists in Europe and threatens Burma.



    3 Polish and Hungarian leaders have character and "balls" and will not be controlled.



    3 Do you ever wonder whether some of them might be trying to exercise the right policies for the wrong reasons? Or that their reasons are fair and decent but the electorate’s less so? I smell something in East Europe that harks back to Germany in the thirties. Yet I still think East Europe’s attitude and policy is right and Merkel Mania proved it, opening the floodgates to a real Islam threat to Europe (just as Hilary Clinton would have done if she had beaten Trump)



    4 Establishment/Institution control how we behave. eg Police Schools Prison Service Civil Service NHS etc



    4 Government-run officialdom has always been a pain in the posterior but, I agree, it’s got worse. Remember though, the creeps in these institutions come from Little Britain. Every time I hear a British member of the public say “rules are rules” I feel nauseous. Because that’s the mentality that spawns or infects the obnoxious self-righteousness of officialdom. As for the NHS, the illness of this institution is that they think they are dispensing a favour rather than a service that has been paid for. Nationalisation has the problem of reversing the roles of giver and receiver. Government should regulate private enterprises, not try and run those enterprises. Indeed, “government-owned” and “enterprise” are almost opposite concepts.



    5 Why mainstream media (MSM) is in line with cardboard cut-out leaders, publishing insignificant news?



    5 The answer is that MSM sensationalises or over-interprets or moulds to its own agenda government announcements. This persuades government to shy away from relying mainly on MSM to inform the public. Also, because Britain is such a divided, argumentative, protesting and whingeing nation, the government prefers – and perhaps has no choice – but to disguise significant announcements or policies as seemingly uninteresting inconsequential pap. The alternative is regular televised news conferences where the government can speak to the public direct and unedited. But senior politicians can spend too much of their time communicating this way when they need to get on with the doing of things.



    6 Why Ant n Dec, Dancing on Ice, etc etc LGBTQ, "Man wears Lipstick", TV or radio programmes presented by LGBTQ "Community" or why alleged antisemitism without one bit of empirical evidence?



    6 The social mania for demonstrating equality and non-discrimination has led to the Scargill recipe of “Positive Discrimination” which, in Britain’s typically heavy-handed simplistic way, led to an influx of deviants into what had already become a reasonably dispersed normal curve. This clumsy solution is not only derisible but also encourages such minorities to become more assertive and never-satisfied, with the counter-productive result that they are not only highlighting their identity as a minority segment but doing so in way which is interpreted as accusatory, hence causing resentment, hence reigniting or fanning the flame of discrimination against minorities, which is the precise opposite of normalisation or assimilation. Antisemitism is an example of this; if (self-appointed) leaders of British Jewry could just shut their stupid whingeing “remember-the-holocaust” mouths, the other 80%+ of mainstream Jews would feel and be more comfortable living in Britain. As for the LGBTQ segment, the reason they are treated as deviants is because they are! The reason they will never gain sufficient acceptance and sympathy among the clear majority of the public is that it is realised that in an overriding majority of cases the deviation is a matter of personal choice of identity and lifestyle rather than a genetic defect. Unless of course one chooses to define the defect as wilful or inherited stupidity, which includes moronically sub-standard parents who are a living testament to the advantage of enforced eugenics.



    7 Why is France on the verge of civil war for almost 2 years and nothing reported in Britain and no one cares?



    7 I disagree that the recent extreme civil unrest has not been reported in Britain. I care only about this unrest inasmuch that France is geographically too close for comfort (compared to the Middle East, parts of Africa and South America). Besides, the French have, for as long as I can remember, been arrogant and/or bolshie. It has got worse under two consecutive Right Wing(ish) presidents, both trying to drag France into 21st century capitalism where you don’t close shop for a 3 hour lunch or go on strike as an annual tradition (eg French air controllers strike) while still expecting and insisting on the status quo of cast iron employment rights and an early retirement with a fat pension, failing which they will take to the streets, burn cars, smash windows, block motorways etc. Those in Britain who you think don’t know or care about this are symptomatic of that segment who have taken the Great out of Britain and are dragging it downwards. Then there’s France’s Muslim problem ………….!!



    8 Why is Canada totally fuffed up and imploding yet no one cares?



    8 What’s the latest or new problem with Canada? Has it not been the way it is for donkey’s years? Yet the Canadian economy is in good health. The people are civilised. Their natural resources are a huge asset. Their towns are attractive and with good infrastructure. Their countryside and smaller towns and villages range from lovely to stupendous. The citizens are considerate and well-mannered. So what’s the problem?



    9 Why is Sweden culturally ransacked and no one cares?



    9 Are you talking about Sweden’s easy-going acceptance of Muslims? I know it’s causing concern and anger among many Swedes but, like Britain, they have this deadly disease called Liberalitus. They need more Muslim / Islam / Isis atrocities to get the message. But then what? Britain has surely had enough messages but Tom Lehrer’s song about National Brotherhood Week (ending with “be grateful it doesn’t last all year”) seems to translate in Britain and Western Europe into a National Brotherhood that lasts indefinitely. Maybe if Sweden was closer to Calais they’d get the message sooner.



    10 Why is Corbyn the Patsy?



    10 He isn’t a patsy. He was a danger to society and thank goodness he eventually demonstrated that and is now even more pathetic and dangerous than a pseudo-reformed Labour Party. Parliament is not short of deliberate or inadvertent demolishers of society. The Tories has Theresa May and, after the smooth fake gloss wore away, David Cameron.



    11 Why is Britain losing its way, with the voice of the majority being of no value?



    11 Because the voice of the majority is of little or no value.



    12 Why is it Farage shot up from the back row with the Brexit Party as if by some magic lightning bolt, and there he is?



    12 Because he appealed to the base instincts of the majority and, quite soon after, a significant percentage of a more thinking minority recognised that Farage had a sound, persuasive and righteous argument and that his policy was not the same as BNP’s. Farage also brought gaiety to the nation


    continued in next posted comment #686

    The planet is horribly overpopulated with our specie, so having a virus that gets rid of some old and ill people is a good thing, not a bad one. Just make sure you have enough toilet paper, and you will be OK

    Better still would be a virus that gets rid of carefree transmitters. That would be a certain type of youth. Admittedly the world needs youth to procreate. But wait a sec, the world needs less procreating and we certain need less procreating from the type of youths who know they can shake off this virus and therefore are content to be indifferent to transmitting it onwards if it gets in the way of having a good time. So if you're looking for a silver lining in a viral cloud it would be culling youth rather than culling the elderly, most of whom are having to eek out their few remaining years by self-isolation.

    Anyone who is paranoid could start thinking that it is a deliberate government policy to kill off the elderly and disabled to reduce the welfare bill

    It's not deliberate and certainly not to reduce the welfare bill


    But it IS recognised and accepted by the government as a consequence of less draconian restrictions for the justifiable excuse that the NHS cannot cope with a sudden rush of suspected virus sufferers. The fortuitous consequence of stretching over time the CV-infected is that the process of herd immunity will take place whether we like it or not because isolation can only reduce rather than eradicate transmission) and inevitably those least likely to survive this process (the "herd deaths") will be the elderly, in particular those in a physical condition that a gives them well below average immunity. Some might argue that within this CV cloud the clear majority of us will inevitably be in receipt of the proverbial silver lining.


    China and South Korea (and I think Taiwan and Thailand) are close to having defeated CV in record time. This is because they are not blessed with our excessive liberalism which has conditioned our government to implement plans which accommodate touchy-feely attitudes & behaviour.

    Here are some thoughts rattling through my addled brain (and apologies if I don't use the right scientific or medical terminology):


    CV has ousted Greta Thunberg's reason for being. That at least is a plus. Because a Soylent Green lifestyle is either self-defeating or hardly a life worth living.


    Us earthlings (individually or as governments or industries) find it impossible to reduce adequately our carbon footprint and, in any case, don't realise it is merely kicking the "doomsday can" down the road for a few miles/years (because of an irresistible urge or uncontrollable gratification to procreate excessively/hyper-exponentially). Perhaps that is why "He" (aka Mother Nature / God / Great Planner in the Sky) has decided to reduce our carbon footprint by the simple means of reducing the aggregate carbon footprint, ie reducing the number of feet, ie people.


    For a while "He" was banking on population control being achieved in fell swoops of nuclear annihilation but humankind is indulging in a stubborn delay or standoff against man-made Armageddon. As an unsatisfactory substitute we are facing the tediously slow death of civilization caused by the geographical re-distribution of savages or religious/murderous fanatics into First World regions (and some Second World regions), which is destroying or mutating World Order.


    Who would have imagined that the solution delivered from "Him" would be population control by illness? Talk about a Biblical Plague"! We marvel and derive pleasure from the way a simple plant reaches upwards to survive, grow, bud and blossom. We admire the way a tree or bush can employ its own mechanisms to combat external natural or man-made hazards. We are much less pleased when it's a weed and we go Defcon 1 when it's Japanese Knot Weed. Whereas with a virus like CV we are in ever-decreasing circles of panic, giving rise to the displacement activities of Government Corbra meetings, scientific and behavioral analysis garnished with transparent-but-vague, factual-but-censored public announcements. It's an impossible communication quandary in that hard unvarnished facts or no announcements could create panic (especially with the help of media), whereas calm optimism and platitudes create public suspicion, confusion, fear, disobedience, disorderliness.


    Granted, we have to deal with CV as best we can. But thinking ahead, and I mean just around the corner, we need to recognise, accept and address the bigger picture, and it's this:


    The survival of a virus depends on susceptible hosts. The increase in population size, concentration/crowding and geographical movement/dispersion unquestionably helps a virus to survive.


    Scientifically I'm now getting out of my depth (especially in the lingo!) but I'm pretty sure the survival mechanism of a virus (or any living thing) is based on adaptability or robustness, which means that as the susceptible hosts develop immunity/resistance, the virus will survive in the more susceptible hosts who are unable to develop immunity, and when those hosts are killed off by the virus, the only way the virus can still survive is to mutate (or reincarnate!) into a new or variant virus for the ever-increasing fresh bunch of receptive or susceptible hosts that await its unwelcome visit. While it's true that many viruses attack animals rather than humans, it is also true that we and virologists fear that an animal virus carries the risk of mutating into one that attacks humans.


    With viruses I fear that the scientific knowledge and ingenuity of 21st century humankind is a King Canute activity and that the only sustainable solution is for humankind to occupy this planet is by dramatically decreasing the frequency of occurrence, persistence of survival and virulence of so many viruses.


    Given that "washing our hands" is a metaphor for a whole new level of hygiene, it is my firm belief that the ultimate remedy is for there to be fewer hands to wash. This has to mean reducing population size by intent rather than accident or neglect, along with creating a world order where dangerously destructive living things (human, animal and environmental) are minimised, quarantined, ideally eliminated. (The Woody Allen in me would start with pigeons!).

    Spot on and we are already doing it. The Seas can be monitored in the same way we monitor our airspace. We make and use some of the best radar and electronic warfare equipment in the world. It's also happening over London on a daily basis. There's military helicopters flying over London on a daily basis that are using electronic warfare monitoring equipment in the fight against terrorism, monitoring and listening into buildings and what's going on down on the ground. Most likely picking up on mobile comms too in the same way the FBI/NSA planes have an eye and ear on the ground spying on citizens and mobile networks. It's even more so during times of higher alert or when diplomats and others are over here visiting. Some are on their way to Woolwich, troop carriers and supply's etc but there are others that are on active service which will deviate from following the flight path along the Thames towards Woolwich.

    Totally agree. I don't know why we are messing around with the EU so much when there are other countries out there that we can trade with and not only that we should be concentrating on building up our own industry productions so we can sell instead of relying so much on buying in. Industry and jobs need creating over here. Whether that's in hydroponic farming, Hemp (cannabis) farming for either medicinal purposes or making an eco friendly fashion industry and clothing, the digital space, or even how about getting British Steel back up and running and shipbuilding. They want to invest in the North well lets get shipbuilding back up and running in preparation for when Scotland goes independent. Telecommunications and electronics is another industry we can invest in and work on instead of getting the likes of the Chinese in. We do it on the military and aviation side so why can't we invest some of that knowledge and tech into commercial. We have our fingers in the pot with Satellites and electronics too. This is all knowledge and experience that can be passed down to more commercial products. Robotics is another area. Science, the MET office and weather, pharmaceuticals (we could start making our own) plenty of drug dealers making pills with some of the right direction would have an interest and the skills to make them professionally. Make legit Xanax instead of fakes. Stop relying on the cheap labour and buying in and lets start producing and selling.


    The US have got it right, look after No 1 they pretty much have the whole computer and online world in their hands feeding income in their direction and have every country and it's people feeding into it. Silicon valley, Google , Microsoft, Apple, Amazon, Facebook, Cloudflare and it's growing, pretty much the whole Internet and everything we do is feeding back to the US. FFS they have even infiltrated our high streets with the coffee shop chains. They also have the movie industry. Where's ours gone. The US are also taking over our TV now. The US give us very little in return and as soon as anyone threatens to start taxing their industries in the digital space they start making threats. They want their fingers in the pot with our NHS and to start ripping us off on pharma and other area's. We should be F***ing off both the EU and the US. TBH I think we could also work on better relations with Russia. Methane gas? (biogas). There's also huge diamond mining going on out there. We have the Russians over here in business and in property so I'm sure we could build on better relations. All the negativity and threat from them comes from us being allies with the US and the US politics and influence on the world.

    I love your pep-speak on British enterprise and entrepreneurism. I think the spearhead will need to be in innovative, high-tech, high-skill markets which don’t require a mass of low/medium-skill labour where we will lose out on price to other countries where labour is cheap. So raw shipbuilding is probably not a market where we can compete globally. Neither is raw steel production. But high-tech value-added steel and marine craft is where we could have a competitive edge.


    I see you have both admiration and ambivalence towards US global market conquests. I suppose it’s because they have deeper pockets than us. Sadly, I also think it’s because they are better at it. Look at the British misadventures over the years. Look at how M&S, when it was making lots of money, bought and mis-managed Brooks Bros in the US and had to sell it on at a big loss. Look at how Tesco’s thought it could grab a share of US supermarket business by launching in the US a supermarket chain called Fresh & Easy. That lasted all of 1-2 years before Tesco’s pulled out. What a pathetically simplistic banal brand name! Britain is still a nation of mostly home-grown (amateur) shopkeepers, which today is pretty sad when such an alarming percentage of our population having become on-line purchasers.


    Thinking export, at the very least we’re going to have to plug the loss of goods exports into the EU, as well as the inevitable loss of City financial services into the EU which we can do little about if and when the EU builds up operational skill and resource to grab a majority share of international financial trading between East & West). On big infrastructure projects and large-scale manufacturing, how are we going to get into the “big time” if China can build for us an HS2 to our specification at nearly half the price and in a third of the time? Export-wise, we’ve got lots of ducks all lined up but can they fly?


    As for Britain’s film industry, we have some great actors (most of whom perform on both sides of the pond) and here in Britain we are at least adept at the technical stuff. On that basis, as we speak the same language we ought to be able to slipstream close behind or even alongside America’s film industry. But not with today’s British film directors like Ken Loach, Danny Boyle, Mike Leigh, Guy Ritchie. Sadly, even Sam Mendes, with his theatre background, is a triumph of show-off art direction over the substance that engages the filmgoer. As for TV, most of the quality stuff comes from the US. No wonder they have a dominant piece of the action in streaming subscription companies.


    I don’t think America is trying to “rip us off”. They just want to sell us their stuff (if we want to buy) and they just want to buy our (potential) money-making businesses (if we want to sell). Neither of these pursuits is under gunpoint. We would do exactly the same if the situation was reversed. As for tax avoidance, it’s legal. If we feel the American’s are too clever at finding tax-avoiding loopholes in our tax rules then amend the rules. But to impose fines and restrictions on Americans just because they’ve got good tax accountants is childish, unjust and will in any case be ignored, yet will still create hostility which is bound to be far worse for us than for America. America are our allies but they’re not our parents and, if they were, they still wouldn’t be a soft touch. The EU are not our allies and probably never were. Why is it taking Britain so long to wise up on this?

    re UK wants equivalence with City access to the EU: let's get real here. No non-EU country that does international financial trading can ever get equivalent access to the EU. The EU has long fancied rivalling the UK's city financial trading and now's their chance. Grabbing a bigger share of the market is not a bout a level playing field, it's about exploiting a competitor's weakness, and that includes creating the opponent creating that competitor's weakness in the first placer.


    re Fish: it ought to be settled by independent arbitration but neither side will risk that . To say the arguments are fluid over dividing up the fish stock is a pun-understatement. In the end it has top be proportional to the market value of the catch to the haulers based on methods of catching fish that are equivalent for both EU and UK fish haulers. Otherwise one gets accused of trying to negotiate based on their relative self-inflicted inefficiency.


    re Align with EU Law: the EU are off their heads. Voluntarily in step or harmonizing or approximating with one another is how sovereign or republic nations get along with one another. Once the EU becomes in charge of North America, Canada, Russia, India, China, Singapore , Australia and New Zealand. we'll have a re-think but, until then, the message from our foreign office must be to FO


    I think the EU-UK negotiations should be closed down forthwith and the UK should resign itself to going it alone, only trading with the EU where that is possible and of mutual advantage and put maximum effort to trading with non-EU countries. The UK should make it clear that the EU's position in the negotiations has displayed an unwillingness to recognise the UK's independence and sovereignty, as well as revealed a political hostility and ill-intentions which makes negotiation futile as well as a possibly deliberate waste of the UK's valuable time needed to set a new course.


    The UK's position on a world map in relation to other countries and continents need to be measured and displayed not in distance in miles but distance in understanding and goodwill*.


    ***


    * I have one giant caveat which has been preying on my mind for quite a while: we know pretty much what's wrong with the EU and their tendency to be insidious, deceiving, hypocritical, inflexible, bureaucratic, domineering and self-serving. The caveat is this: are we in the UK really any better? Have we been finding it convenient over the last decade or so to blame the EU for faults or failings that are really of our own making? I think the distinction between an ego and an alter ego exists not just for individual people but also for whole countries or continents. One sees contradictions all the time between people's or countries' stated principles or ideals and how they actually behave. The difference might be hypocrisy or real-life pressures or temptations such as survival, greed, power, status. As Britain seeks to (re-)find its true destiny beyond the confines of the EU, will we be any less pedantic, rigid, full of ourselves, argumentative, feral or perfidious than we were when painting the globe red a few hundred years ago?

    Am I the only one who feels uncomfortable that ….?


    a) The predicted sentence which Weinstein faces matches or exceeds an act of intended violence that leads to the crime of manslaughter.


    b) The satisfaction obtained from the guilty verdict is so heavily laced with vindictive revenge, that one senses there would be no pause for thought if the sentence was life imprisonment with no parole.


    c) The so-called Me-Too movement has turned its momentum into an excessively-laboured virtue-signalling bandwagon, part motivated by litigation lawyers and their me-too clients, both to soon monetise the crass overplaying of the outdated Hollywood Casting Couch by this power-crazed, sex-ravenous, unattractive pathetic slob.


    d) The distinction between consensual sex and rape is surely a matter of a degree rather than a dichotomy. Is the explicit or veiled or implied threat of no sex equals no employment or a career cul-de-sac or grey-listing within a showbiz sector enough of a threatened for sex to be classed as rape?


    e) The legal outcome against the female abuse from male power generally and sexual dominance specifically may have been so successful as to over-correct the imbalance, to the point where courtesy, charm and romance between the sexes becomes not simply restrained but either too hot to handle or as gratifying as a cold cup of tea …….for men at least.

    Now that is good news. Nice to see true justice being served. I found it sickening how he started using the zimmerframe. There was a news clip the other day where he approached some stairs and suddenly let go while the guy next to him carried the frame up the stairs for him and he walked up the stairs like perfectly capable human being only holding onto the handrail for show. It was so obvious.

    You'll be telling me next that he didn't have a back operation, that the lawyer, surgeon and hospital agreed to lie to get into showbiz.