Random thoughts

From today’s BBC NI News quiz:

This is how the News Letter headlined the story that a fifth of people saw no harm buying counterfeit CDs and DVDs, despite the Government saying it funded crime.

Two thoughts:

  1. Dear Her Majestys Government: consider this a parable along the lines of The Boy who cried Wolf.
  2. What is this nonsense about funding crime? If there’s a socio-economic activity that’s more self financing than crime, I’d like to hear about it…

But on a slightly more entertaining note, it appears that everyone’s favourite drunken be-wigged Irishman is to be replaced as Eurovision presenter by everyone’s favourite drunken be-camped Irishman.

Norton described it as “an amazing job and a huge honour”.

He said: “Sir Terry is nothing less than legend and is an impossible act to follow, but somebody must and I just couldn’t say no.

“I can’t wait to get to Moscow. With a combination of cheap vodka and a language barrier what could possibly go wrong?”

Diplomatic incident ahoy, methinks…

You what?

Stolen from the Register

Stolen from the Register

So, what would that picture suggest to you? Perhaps that Tiger Beer is a better export than Thai ladyboys?

Because that’s what it says to me.

However, to the eight people who complained, and the Advertising Standards Agency who agreed with them, it’s all about people being moved from their native country to another country to live a life of sexual slavery.

No, really.

“We understood that the ads image was intended to represent a ladyboy cabaret act. We considered, however, that by presenting the character in sexual clothing and a provocative pose alongside the implication that she was rated the Far Easts third most desirable export, the ad appeared to link exports with the sex trade and, potentially, human trafficking.

“We also considered the ad suggested beer and sex were two of the best exports of the Far East, which was disrespectful to Eastern culture. We concluded that the ad was likely to cause serious or widespread offence.”

Whoa. That’s quite a logical leap.To go from ‘appears’ and ‘potentially’ to banning it because it ‘suggests’ something is a little bit of an overreach, wouldn’t you say?

Still rumbling on

Oh God. A week and a half ago, I offered a solution to the fecking Brand/Ross screw-up.

The BBC didn’t accept it, but they did a couple of other things, some people resigned, and that was supposed to be it. Fuss over, and move on with life.

Then Russell Brand goes and reopens it all, by saying more on the issue. But something else in the article intrigued me:

Meanwhile, senior politicians and BBC figures have called for curbs on potentially offensive comedy and star salaries.

Now, never mind the bit about the potentially offensive comedy, because all comedy is offensive to someone. It’ll never happen, and if it does it will honestly spell the end of the BBC as anything other than an outlet for politically and socially biased news and nature shows.

But the other bit – BBC figures calling for curbs on star salaries. That piqued my interest. Because I don’t see how the fuss could have gotten as big as it does without someone from within the BBC stoking the fires a little.

My reasoning is this: the type of people who would complain, and to the Mail of all places, wouldn’t be listening on a Saturday evening to Russell Brand. Two people complained about the show immediately; the thousands of other complaints only happened after the Mail on Sunday kicked up a fuss. Who must have been tipped off by somebody. Who better than someone within the BBC, who might have known some of the steps that went before the broadcast?

And there are quite a few people within the BBC would are aghast at the sums of money that some of the big names earn. Not for the reasons that I’m uneasy at said salaries*, but because it’s damn unfair that anyone – let alone a mean hetrosexual male who doesn’t even like lentils or read the Guardian should get that sort of money.

So if there’s any way to stop the big earners, they’d take that option. Even if it seems to damage the Beeb, because at the end of the day the Beeb won’t be allowed to be damaged at all. Upstanding British icon, and all that…

And then some MPs think that they scent blood in the water, and go for Jezza instead. Good luck with that, mate…


* – Because it’s not value for money and it’s my fucking money they’re not getting value for. If it was value for money, and the market was at all fair, then the same programmes would be made by privately owned stations.

About bloody time

D’ye remember thon Sky v Virgin spat from a year and a half ago? The one that had me going as far as phoning BT to price changing from NTL to BT/Sky? Back when NTL stuffed my mouth with silver to keep me (as in, improving my service and chopping my bill)?

Apparently it’s finally over.

Which means two things:

  1. Less downloading for me
  2. More adverts for me

Actually, that there second one might nullify the first…

Rank inflation

Oh shit. The BBC has made yet another mistake. I demand investigations, heads on pikes and a reduction in the TV tax.

Actually, I’d settle for that last on, please.

But what, you ask, is the mistake? Is it more on the Ross/Brand shenanigans? Is it another phone in scandal?

Er, no. It’s a little thing that they appended to the end of this article on the fuckwittery of SF about the RIR homecoming parade.

Major Brown, who is General Officer Commanding for Northern Ireland, said the measures “further underpin our appreciation of the sensitivities surrounding this element of the parade”.

Major Brown, as GOC for Northern Ireland? This being the same Norn Iron that has about 5,000 troops? That’s quite a responsibility for an OF-3. Unless they’re referring to Major General Chris Brown, who’s actually in charge.

I’m sure he’s perfectly happy about being demoted by the Beeb, though.

A simple, yet elegant solution

I’ll admit that I’m one of the many people who are less than impressed with Messrs Brand and Ross over their recent shenanigans. But the circus over it is getting out of hand.

The offence:

  1. Two presenters with reputations for crassness get together for a pre-recorded show.
  2. A guest fails to turn up.
  3. Presenter A phones guest.
  4. Presenter B starts shouting somewhat private information about Presenter A and the guest’s granddaughter.
  5. Repeat steps 3 & 4.
  6. Repeat steps 3 & 4.
  7. Repeat steps 3 & 4.
  8. Repeat steps 3 & 4.
  9. Some dimwitted editor decides that it should be broadcast.

The developing outcome:

  • Prime Minster gets involved and says that it’s all unacceptable.
  • Various other politicians follow suit.
  • Presenters offer apologies.
  • Guest says that he wants it to go away.
  • Granddaughter says to the Currant Bun that Presenters A & B should be sacked.
  • BBC goes into full OH SHIT mode and suspends both presenters, pending official investigations.

Was it in bad taste? Yes. Was it exactly the same kind of humour that is only ever funny when coming home from the pub at 3am? Yes. But was it illegal? No. Should it cost people their jobs? Probably not.

My solution is very backward looking and not at all likely to happen, but I think it would please most of the people involved, even those readers of the Current Bun.

Start a service called punch-a-cad.com. The point of this service would be to, on request, send some large gentlemen (preferable with tasteful moustaches and perhaps monocles) to walk up to the boorish louts and to punch them very hard in the face. Actions by punch-a-cad.com operatives on duty would, of course, be exempt from prosecution, provided that they don’t go above GBH.

Thusly the insult to the ‘victim’ is repaid, and the offending boors would be appropriately chastised, without any lasting effects.

A further advantage would be in setting the precedent. Once punch-a-cad.com had been up and running for a while, you could expand their remit to anyone doing kiss-and-tell stories in the press. Which would a) improve the output of the newspapers considerably and b) put a stop to the Sunday World. Win-win.

No bias here

I think that I’ve been fairly subtle over the last months about who I’d want to win in the US election. And it’s obvious as to why: I want McCain to win because I’m too racist to want Obama to win.

It’s not that I don’t like his vacuous nature; it’s not that I don’t like the populism; it’s not my inbuilt distrust of cultish followers. Not, it’s racism.

At least, that’s the sort of thing that’s being implied by stories such as these.

The conventional wisdom, which I share, is that Barack Obama will win this election, perhaps by a healthy margin. But Democrats are nervous wrecks; they’re having nightmares that defeat will be snatched from the jaws of victory.

To add to their misery (and guard against complacency), here’s how that horror film could play out:

In the end, the problem was the LIVs. That’s short for “low-information voters”, the three-fifths of the electorate that shows up once every four years to vote for president but mostly hates politics.

Obama shifted New Mexico, Iowa and Nevada from red to blue. But there was a reason Virginia hadn’t gone Democratic since 1964. The transformation of the northern part of the state couldn’t overcome a huge McCain margin among whites farther south. They weren’t the racists of their parents’ generation, but they weren’t quite ready to vote for the unthinkable, either.

It’s turning into that same old story: people who say that they’re not voting for Obama are having to defend their opinions, because not to vote for him is becoming unthinkable. He’s young, good looking, progressive1 and hasn’t bothered with actually saying anything. His opponent dares not to be progressive, and thusly anyone who would vote for him is clearly not a smart person.

The first time I was aware of this sort of thing was the ’92 general election, when all those shy Tories voted one way in the voting booth and another in the exit polls. There’s a reverse sort of thing here as well – lots of posh middle class Catholics say that they’d never vote for Sinn Fein and yet the numbers look suspiciously like some of them do.

But this time round, it’s much much worse. Because it’s not just the traditional forward/backwards looking thing; nor is it a straight left right fight. This time it’s also being portrayed as a racism test: you’re either not racist, in which case if you’ve a brain you’ll vote for Obama, or you are racist, in which case you’ll vote for McCain.

Well, fuck that. I don’t like Obama, I don’t like his policies and I don’t like the way that the media worship his feet.

Against that, I don’t mind McCain. He’s got a record to examine, he’s got a few interesting ideas. And – showing my ignorance again here – I don’t mind Palin either. So, who do you think I’d vote for?

And I’m perfectly happy to say that. Even if it’s just me showing my ignorance and racism…


1 – Where ‘progressive’ means ‘very backwards looking indeed’, back before lots of facts got in the way of those lovely redistributive theories of economies and fairness…

So many times – WRONG

Oh bother.

IF YOUR local post office has been closed down lately, you might be interested to find out where the money supposedly saved has gone – on Postman Pat’s helicopter, that’s where.

Yes, the big-nosed Greendale postie who never once stole a tenner from a child’s birthday card and was seemingly content with the company of Jess, his black and white cat, and the occasional bunk-up with Mrs Goggins has suffered the fate of too many children’s characters. He’s been ‘updated’.

The new Pat, due on a TV screen near you around now, has had his little van replaced by a fleet of new vehicles including a helicopter, a ‘stunt bike’ with a sidecar for Jess, a forklift truck, and a large eco-van, whatever one of those is. And alas, Greendale is no more, and Pat now patrols a new ‘bustling’ town populated by a working mum, a Chinese shopkeeper and, inevitably, a wheelchair-user. It seems no programme is complete these days without the token cripple, even children’s cartoons.

Some things just aren’t meant to be messed with, and one of those is the world of Greendale.

As I was waking up yesterday morning, still slightly tipsy, the television was turned on to this new abomination. I was not impressed, and nor was anybody else in the room. It would appear that nobody particularly likes their childhood memories being fucked with…

Bah. Change. Who needs it?

Things that damaged my blood pressure on the drive this morning

  • The new hotel that’s being built beside the Grand Opera House. First of all, it’s going to look like shite just because of where it’s being built. Secondly, who thought that using half of Grosvenor Road as a waiting area for delivery trucks during rush hour was anything other than a stupid idea?
  • The new Hitchhiker’s book. Yes, you can work with film, because Adams left a framework. Yes, you can work with spin-offs, because that’s what happens. But you do not fuck with the damn books; HHGG has been left as a trilogy in five parts for long enough to be established as such – there’s no need for messing about and adding more unnecessarily.
  • The people who decided that the default volume for Radio 4 should be so damn low. Seriously, why is it the only station on the whole FM spectrum that requires you to strain your ears?
  • This shit film being successful. How annoying.

Aside from all that, I’m all sunshine and light. How about you?

That timing was less than perfect

Last Friday was the cumulation of the latest preachy bullshitty Radio 1 campaign, wherein they did some basic image fuckaboutery and a rather unscientific test. They they used this to preach, at length, that alcohol causes damage and can make you act the tit.

Because, y’know, nobody knew that. Obviously.

So they’re busy pushing the lovely nannying message that we shouldn’t be enjoying ourselves. The same message put forth by the BMA, the Home Office, various charities and more than a few politicians.

Is it overly suspicious of me to be somewhat less than surprised to see a nannying report about Radio 1 and alcohol on the same day?

Radio presenters have been criticised for promoting heavy drinking so as to be seen as “cool” by their listeners.

BBC Radio 1’s Chris Moyles came in for particular criticism.

The study, which focused on radio programmes aimed at young people broadcast between December 2007 and February this year, criticised DJs for using terms such as “ruined” and “lashed” and found some 13% of monitored comments encouraged drinking to excess.

And so it was, in the year of our Lord two thousand and eight, that words were banished; and yea thoughts were declared unworthy; and verily the very soul of man was changed. The demon drink was excised from consciousness of the chosen people, and the Priests of Nanny looked forth from their high place, and saw that it was good.

Perhaps, dear professor, the cart followed the horse: the presenters like a drink because most people like a drink. Most people don’t start drinking because they think that a fat beardy loud mouth on t’radio likes a binge.

Well, on the plus side, thon stupid anti-alcohol campaign shouldn’t be annoying anymore. Unless they do a Scott Mills and repeat it ad nauseam for the next year…

Excellent with a capital AWESOME

T’other day I dug about the DVD collection for a bit and found what I wanted to see: Ghostbusters.

Yes, it’s dated a little. Yes, the special effects are somewhat less than bleeding edge. Yes, we’ve all seen people decidedly more madcap than Doh, Ray, Egon and Winston.

But it’s still a very, very excellent movie.

And the franchise is one of the members of that most select of clubs: franchises in which the sequel is as good as the original.

And it would appear that Ghostbusters III is on the way.

This could be very, very bad – all life as you know it stopping instantaneously and every molecule in your body exploding at the speed of light bad – but on the other hand, it could be very, very good.

I’m hoping for that there second one…

Circling the drain. Again.

How long do you think that Hollywood has been putting pictures of beautiful women and guns on posters? I’m guessing a very long time. Because it’s what sells movies. It’s not what sells guns, and it’s not like we hadn’t noticed beautiful women before…

So what has happened to this fucked up, pussyified, scared-of-its-own-shadow, politically self-censoring excuse for a society in the last couple of years, eh?

Two posters for an Angelina Jolie film have been criticised by advertising watchdogs for making guns attractive.

The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) ruled that the posters were not suitable to be seen by children.

It added that the use of a glamorous actress, gun images and aspirational text “could glamorise violence”.

Two things: To the ASA – you’re a bunch of mindless, feckless, feared twunts and I hope you have a serious reconsideration of your place in the greater scheme of things.

To the 17 people who complained: grow the fuck up and stop trying to spoil life for the other 59,999,983 of us who have a brain.

How long, d’ye think, before the poster for SuperSize Me gets complained about for promoting unhealthy food? Or the poster for Top Gun gets banned for being un-environmentally-friendly?

Seriously, this world is going very wrong, and going there fast

That doesn’t sit well

There are many things that I don’t understand about the political systems of most countries. In the UK, why can’t a MP resign? In Norn Iron, what exactly is D’Hondt and who thought it would be a good idea? In France, what is the point? In Italy, why bother?

In the US there are a number of confusing things. Why does Teddy Kennedy still have a job? Why haven’t the Republicans been bitchslapped back to Tuesday and taught the meaning of the words ‘fiscal responsibility’? And why are voters supposed to register a political affiliation on their voter registration form?

I’m a simple man, y’see, and I was under the impression that the US operated one of those secret ballot things, to whit that how you vote wasn’t supposed to be public knowledge unless you chose to make it so. Why then is this possible, let alone a story?

Democrats may be blasting Sarah Palin as a doctrinaire conservative, and Republicans may be embracing her for the same reason, but her husband and oldest son are independents.

Or, more precisely, their party affiliation is listed as “undeclared” on voter registration records retrieved from the Alaska Division of Elections.

I would take this to mean that you’re registered as Republican, Democrat, Independent or Undeclared. Why would this information need to be registered by the state, out of curiosity?

It doesn’t make a whole lot of sense to me, and you know how I don’t like things that don’t make sense…

You’ve got to hand it to him

Michael O’Leary. Yes, he may be a brash bastard, he may be doing his damnest to take the romance out of flying, he may be unashamedly ferrying drunken louts onto the streets of innocent cities all over Europe.

But he’s a master at PR. Not by lying, not by spinning and certainly not by trying to be logical about it.

No, he does mocking, and when pushed, he’ll put his hands up, make his case and leave people without a leg to stand on.

Example: thon incident on Monday when a Ryanair plane lost cabin pressure and had to make an emergency dive from 30,000 to 8,000 feet before diverting to land at a nearby runway in France. There was a nice, media savvy passenger on board who was able to state, calmly and for the record, exactly where Ryanair went wrong: they didn’t tell people during the dive what was happening; the cabin crew didn’t circulate the cabin and give directions on operating the oxygen masks; and the oxygen masks didn’t work because the bags didn’t inflate.

This was happening on the Today show, and then dear old Mick was asked to comment on this shoddy state of affairs.

“Well,” said he in a badly paraphrased version of events, “yes, the pilot didn’t make an announcement. The crew didn’t make an announcement either. And they didn’t circulate to instruct the passengers in the use of the masks. Because the pilots were too busy putting on their own masks, and then pushing the plane a little bit out of its normal operating envelope while communicating with the ground and any other aircraft nearby. And the crew were busy putting on their own masks so that they didn’t pass out themselves in the cabin, which wouldn’t have done the passengers any good at all…”

Oh, and O’Leary also said that the masks were working, and that they’re not meant to produce a large flow. Which is probably a good thing; I can’t imagine that having several hundred bags of highly flammable gas in the centre of a cabin would be a good idea.

In the interview, O’Leary basically agreed with the main points, thusly disarming the interviewer who was expecting a defensive interviewee. And then he turned it around; of course that’s the way we do it, it’s the way that it needs to be done. Communication with the passengers waits until the passengers are safe; there’s too much going on in the first couple of minutes that needs to be done*.

Quiet, understated and totally non-combative. And he came away having made his case and leaving no room for argument. That is damn good PR. And you’ve got to appreciate that when you see it, even if you don’t like the man.

As an aside, the passenger mentioned that the French airport fire people did very well, and had the runway lined with emergency vehicles when they landed, despite having ‘only’ fifteen minutes notice. That ain’t nothing, the whole point of the fire vehicles at any large airport is to be at the site and working with one hundred and twenty seconds of someone saying GO. I’m sure that they thought fifteen minutes waiting was agony; just enough time to get onto the third cup of coffee, not enough time to go for the required bathroom break following two earlier cups of coffee…

* – the thing that they’re trying to drill into me at the moment is ‘aviate-navigate-communicate’ : if anything goes wrong, fly the aircraft first. Then decide where you fly it next and get that set up. Then you tell people what went wrong, what you’re doing about it and where you’re going with it. Seems very sensible, but when you’re talking a ten second gap between starting the first and finishing the third it gets a little more complicated…

I want to be annoyed

You know how it is… You see a headline, and your blood pressure rises a bit and the makings of a righteous rant start forming in your mind.

Well, obviously most normal people may not know how that is, but it’s what goes on in my head, so we’ll run with it.

Sometimes, however, all the makings of a rant are there, and yet the rant doesn’t appear. Because, despite the basic ingredients being there, I find myself conceding, with lots of bad grace, that there may be a point buried somewhere in there.

This was what happened when I saw this on t’BBC home page.

from news.bbc.co.uk

It has the ingredients: it has an annoying celebrity chef; it has an annoying celebrity chef bitching, it is down on drink and it’s not promising about encouraging me to eat what I want to eat.

And then the bastard goes and acts a little sensibly:

Celebrity chef Jamie Oliver has criticised the UK for its alcohol culture and poor cuisine.

In an interview with Paris Match magazine, Oliver suggested people in the UK cared more about getting drunk than they did about eating well.

The chef said there was a better variety of food in South African slums than in English towns and cities.

How dare he make salient points, eh? Doesn’t he know that some of us have bile to vent in his general direction?

Git. How very rude of him to be right about something. It messes with my sense of balance in the world…

Transparency

If I was a suspicious sort, I’d look at the coverage of the recent strange think tank report and say that something was a little fishy.

The coverage I heard on the radio (which was all BBC stuff of differing flavours) was saying that the suggestion was that people would be made to up sticks and move south, and that public funds wouldn’t be spent on northern cities, which had no future. Vernon Kay was particularly keen on pushing this and getting Righteously Indignant about it.

My thinking, and I thought this without reading the report, was along these lines: think tanks are, on the whole, fucking stupid things and come up with a lot of fucking stupid ideas. But they’re not generally in the lines of suggesting forced migration. The BBC, on the other hand, has a fantastic track record of misleading over such things. So I’ll take their coverage with a pinch of salt and reach my own interpretation, to whit, that the think thank suggested that if economic growth is being driven in the south, then people will move to the jobs in the south, and that the infrastructure in the south needs improving. The big cities in the north would then lose people, and thus would need less investment.

That was my thinking, anyway. And it wasn’t right; having read the executive summary I find that they’re not quite as cold and calculating as I was.

But that hasn’t stopped the media frenzy. No, that continues unabated. And the annoyance that will be felt in the northern cities, and in the residents of the south that were originally from the north, will continue to be stoked. Why would this be, do you think?

Certainly not because of this little sentence that has been creeping into the BBC coverage:

Policy Exchange, a registered charity, has been described as Mr Cameron’s favourite think tank.

Ah. So my latest thinking is this: if the BBC can get the words ‘Policy Exchange’ to be linked with the name ‘Cameron’, then they can smear the first while appearing to be neutral on the second. Which means that they’re not being politically biased at all, no sirree, but they can happily kick the Tories.

Not that I’m paranoid at all, you understand…


UPDATE: Vernon Kay is now on another rant, this time entitled “Take that, Tory think tank”. Actual quote. That was fast…

+1 to that

el Reg has been pissing on the bonfire of one of those silly parliamentary committees on alledged rights.

Now look at some of the proposed new “rights” set out in the annex to the parliamentary report:

Everyone has the right to have access to appropriate health care services, free at the point of use and within a reasonable time…

Everyone has the right to have access to further education and to vocational and continuing training…

Everyone has the right to adequate accommodation appropriate to their needs…

These really aren’t Rights at all – rather, they are an expression of the conviction that the current model of the British welfare state is somehow inevitable and proper. In linguistic terms – note the liberal use of words such as “appropriate” and “reasonable” – they are a bureaucrat’s wet dream, setting out in no uncertain terms not the scope of our aspirations, but the limit to our freedoms.

It’s nice to see that I’m not the only one who isn’t massively keen on the idea of a vaguely left wing and very statist shopping list being passed off as a bill of right that we should all be expected to get on board with.

I’m normally a fan of el Reg and their way with words. I’m also generally a fan of my way with words. But, in this instance I’ll follow the advice of TLG and let someone better speak for me. Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you the wisdom of the late, great and lamented Acidman:

I have just one question: Why is it that the more imaginary “rights” people invent, the less personal freedom I have?

More needs to be done to shut people up…

Tacked onto the blunt end of a bad news story about pubs, there’s the fun and games that the media like to get involved with. And they like to use this opportunity to let the Association of Chief Police Officers trot out their usual bull about drink.

So they go on about the way that fewer people are buying fewer drinks in bars than they used to. This is a bad thing, because I like pubs. But they ACPO get involved.

Like this:

The Association of Chief Police Officers said more needed to be done by the drinks industry to curb excessive and dangerous drinking.

Seriously, that’s not the problem. Binge drinking, ‘excessive and dangerous drinking’ is not the problem. Motherfucking people demanding action to fix problems that aren’t problems; that’s the fucking problem…

Not that I got a little wound up at the pointless addition of that quote from ACPO in a story that doesn’t concern ACPO or their damn mindset, obviously…

Flawed first principles

A recent Times article was pointed out to me, with the simple question about it: True?

Is your man forever peppering conversations with random facts, like ‘mercury is the only metal that’s liquid at room temperature’ or ‘Carlsberg Special Brew was invented for Winston Churchill’? If so, don’t worry: lots of men are addicted to useless information – and it’s not really their fault. Mark Mason, author of a new book on the subject, explains why the male brain has such a huge fascination with tiny facts.

I’m quite confused by the whole thing: useless information, what is this? Sure there’s no such thing, there’s just inappropriately timed information…

The article then goes on to list seven reasons why males like trivia. And only gets round to the real reason once you get to the seventh: It satisfies their curiosity, kind of. Of course it does; it’s information, it’s knowledge, it’s learning and it’s always better to have more of that than less.

Of course, there is a real question that could be asked in relation to it: why do we constantly bore the women around us with trivia? And that two is simple: because it’s remarkably difficult to put your foot in your mouth while reciting trivia, and we need all the safe ground we can get when treading around women…

Rubbish

There are two ways to call the impending refusal of Labour to stand a candidate against David Davis.

  1. It’s a pragmatic way to deal with it; there’s no way they could overturn his majority from the 2005 election, and by agreeing to stand they’re dancing to his tune and campaigning on his issues.
  2. It’s a cowards way out; the mark of principle isn’t fighting the fights you can win, it’s fighting the fights that need fighting. Not turning up because you think you’ll lose is hardly the point of modern politics.

Frankly, I think that it’s (2). But with a lot more invective and bile.

Why can’t it be (1)? Simple; they’re not David Davis’ issues. They the issues that the Labour party has been campaigning on for years: ID cards, ‘reform’ of the judicial system, greater powers for police and the security services.

It’s just that they can’t make a coherent case for them, and they know they’d lose if they had to try in front of an electorate.

Pussies.

Also, yer twat from the Sun has apparently pulled out. Which is a shame, because I’l like to see a) him be swatted like a bug and b) someone actually testing the power of the Sun…