Brown loses the plot - again  

Friday, 28 March 2008

From the Appalling Strangeness...

Downing Street has insisted Gordon Brown was just "doing what he was told" after apparently getting lost at the state banquet for Nicolas Sarkozy.

The Queen apparently commented:
"The prime minister got lost. He disappeared the wrong the crucial moment."Sounds like a sage comment not just for the banquet, but pretty much everything Brown has been involved in since he became Prime Minister.

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No surprise  

"At London Heathrow Terminal 5 we’ve created a natural, logical journey that’s so calm, you’ll flow through. It should only take ten minutes to get from check-in to departures ".

Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha

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Rainbows over Somerset  

Tuesday, 25 March 2008

This is the latest watercolour I've been working on. The picture's come out a bit dark unfortunately, but you get the idea. This is a scene from memory. The journey back from Somerset the other week was interspersed with some heavy showers. In between, there was some lovely sunny breaks and during one of these I spotted a beautiful rainbow arching over some farm buildings. This is my attempt at capturing that moment.

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Some of life's little rules  

Sunday, 23 March 2008

Found this while browsing...excellent. I wonder if I can get a Japanese version?

Rule 1: Life is not fair...get used to it.

Rule 2: The world won't care about your self-esteem. The world will expect you to accomplish something BEFORE you feel good about yourself.

Rule 3: You will NOT make 40 thousand quid a year right out of school. You won't be a vice-president with a car phone, until you earn both.

Rule 4: If you think your teacher is tough, wait till you get a boss. He doesn't have tenure.

Rule 5: Flipping burgers is not beneath your dignity. Your grandparents had a different word for burger flipping-they called it opportunity.

Rule 6: If you mess up, it's not your parents' fault, so don't whine about your mistakes, learn from them.

Rule 7: Before you were born, your parents weren't as boring as they are now. They got that way from paying your bills, cleaning your clothes and listening to you talk about how cool you are. So before you save the rain forest from the parasites of your parents' generation, try delousing the closet in your own room.

Rule 8: Your school may have done away with winners and losers but life has not. In some schools they have abolished failing grades and they'll give you as many times as you want to get the right answer. This doesn't bear the slightest resemblance to ANYTHING in real life.

Rule 9: Life is not divided into semesters. You don't get summers off and very few employers are interested in helping you find yourself. You have to do that on your own time.

Rule 10: Television is NOT real life. In real life people actually have to leave the coffee shop and go to jobs.

Rule 11: Be nice to nerds. Chances are you'll end up working for one.

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IND guilty of "atrocious barbarism"  

Saturday, 22 March 2008

Regular readers will no doubt be fully aware of the low regard in which I hold the idiots in charge of immigration in this country. But this week, even I was astonished to discover the depths of inhumanity that these slimy jobsworths have now reached. In a decision labelled "atrocious barbarism" by no less a publication than the Lancet, our friends at the Home Office Immigration & Nationality Directorate forcibly expatriated a Ghanan woman dying of cancer. The life-saving treatment she desperately needed was not available in her native Ghana, and so the victim, Mrs Sumani, died shortly afterwards. Mrs Sumani is survived by two children. Friends in the UK had raised over £60,000 to bring her back to the UK for the treatment she so desperately needed, but unfotunately the help came too late.

Mrs Sumani had apparently come to the UK to study, but became ill while she was here. Unluckily for Mrs Sumani, and unlike the hundreds of thousands of immigrants who intentionally enter this country illegally, the IND knew exactly where she could be found and so she presented an easy addition to this month's deportation tally. We have to meet those targets, after all.

Lin Homer, the agency's chief executive, is reported as commenting: "The case was carefully considered by both trained caseworkers but also through the independent judicial process, which is better and fairer than a decision by me as chief executive or by the minister."

Irrespective of the legal technicalities, how any human being can carefully consider the pros and cons of this case and conclude that condemning another human being to death is the correct course of action to take completely elludes me. I fervently hope that Lin Homer and all her lackies at the IND suffer the same agonising and undiginified deaths that they consigned Mrs Sumani to. Furthermore, I hope the bastards rot in hell for all eternity afterwards - a fate they so richly deserve.

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The greatness of Britain revealed  

Tuesday, 18 March 2008

The family is now back in Japan for the Easter break and so that the missus can start the house-hunting process. We had the very rare opportunity on Sunday night for a "night off" from my stepdaughter, so I booked a hotel in Windsor and we spent most of yesterday wandering around the town and the castle. I know I spend most of my time railing against the British government and the state of the country. But at my heart, the pride of being British and being part of that great heritage is something that even Brown and his marxist jackals can't erase. Windsor, with its history and its associations, is almost like a tangible expression of that collective pride. As we approach the end of our time in England, I'm really keen to try and get across to the missus that sense of what being British is all about. It's not all drunken yobs, high taxes and third-world health services; there is still some thing special here.

Windsor is a very pretty town. Although it suffers from the same identi-kit high street syndrome as every other town in the land, there is enough uniqueness to make it an interesting place to wander around. Even more so, crossing the bridge into Eton was like stepping into another world. The cash machine is Coutts & Co.; the shops sell morning dress, handmade shirts and all sorts of gentleman's finery. I was struck by the influence that this little place has had on the history of the country - from the long line of ex Prime Ministers to today's great and good. Elitist? Probably. But in the recent words of Ed Balls, "So what?" I am glad that such bastions still exist against the rise of Brown's marxist utopia.

Of course, no trip to Windsor can be complete without a tour of the castle. The state rooms are an absolute treasure trove of armaments and booty liberated from the evil grasp of Johnny Foreigner over hundreds of years and a good proportion of the globe. The staggering opulence of the rooms and their decor serves to remind the visitor of the very real power that this country once exercised over the world. As we walked around, I couldn't help but feel a sense of smug satisfaction about what we as a nation have achieved; about a history and heritage unmatched by any other nation on Earth. Perhap the position of Britain in today's world is a bit comparing Eton High Street with today's universal UK high street; seemingly, rather old-fashioned and anacranistic, but cradling within it a set of values, knowledge and culture that have survived centuries of change and will continue to do so. Despite the corrosive efforts of traitorous politicians, despite the cultural confusion created by multi-culturism, and despite a changing world order, each of us can feel proud that we all share within us a little bit of Eton and a little bit of the riches of Windsor castle.

We can feel proud that we have contributed something to the world of lasting value. Proud, not in a nationalistic sense, but with the humble satisfaction of a job well done. I really hope that by exposing the missus to our heritage, she might pick up a sense of what being British means to me. But I think maybe it's something that, like a place at Eton, remains the preserve of the favoured few.

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Another day, another data breach  

Friday, 14 March 2008

MoD admits to losing 11,000 ID cards
By Nick Heath Published on
Published: 13 March 2008 13:05 GMT

The Ministry of Defence (MoD) has admitted that more than 11,000 military ID cards have been lost or stolen in the past two years. Defence minister Bob Ainsworth admitted that 4,433 ID cards disappeared in 2006 and a further 6,812 went missing from July 2006 to December 2007. He revealed the loss in a written answer to Parliament in response to a question by shadow defence secretary Dr Liam Fox. The revelation prompted condemnation from opposition parties who said that it made a mockery of security procedures at military facilities and showed a scandalous disregard for the security of British citizens.

In a statement, the MoD said: "We take the loss of military ID cards very seriously and we are taking steps to improve general security awareness. Military ID cards form one part of the security measures we have in place. They have photographic ID on them, so it would be difficult for them to be used by individuals they have not been assigned to."

The government has suffered many data security breaches over the past five months, including the MoD having three laptops stolen containing approximately 600,000 servicemen's and recruits' details, the NHS losing hundreds of thousands of patient records, the DVLA losing three million learner drivers' details and the HMRC losing 25 million child benefit details.

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Who needs a "mother" like this?  

Wednesday, 12 March 2008

The BBC today reported that the mother of the British teenager murdered in Goa is to be questioned about her possible negligence in allowing her 15 year old daughter to stay alone which she swanned off to another part of India. It has now come to light that the murdered girl was having a sexual relationship with the older man the mother had entrusted with her daughter's care. On top of that, it transpires that the girl was last seen at a bar, where she was reportedly "off her face" on drink and drugs the night she was killed.

And they are questioning the mother about "possible" negligence? I've never heard of a clearer case of wanton neglect. What kind of digusting excuse for a mother entrusts her daughter's safety to a paedophile while she endulges her selfish whims? Her pathetic whining about how she was "naive" is presumably meant as some kind of excuse for her failure. From the look of her, the mother is some kind of hippy/new age traveller hangover who clearly feels under no obligation to adhere to any kind of standard that most people would consider normal. Clearly, she feels it is perfectly acceptable for her 15 year old daughter to indulge in drinking, drugs and under age sex. Wrong. If it's the case that she was aware of all this going on, she should be bloody well locked up as an accomplice to murder, as by her neglect, her selfishness and lack of parental control, she is just as guilty as the murder themself.

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Grading success  

Monday, 10 March 2008

This weekend was the BKA Spring Seminar and Grading at Watchet, near Minehead. Myself and two of the guys from Shinmyo Ken went in for our Nidan (2nd Dan Black Belt) grading this weekend and thankfully we all passed. I am really pleased, but still a little shellshocked and knackered after the weekend so it hasn't really sunk in yet. Gaining Nidan means that we now have a minimum 2 year wait until we can consider grading again. This period gives us a chance to put the standard seitei kata study (modern style) on hold and really devote some serious time to koryu (traditional style). So this really marks a watershed in my iaido career and the chance to get more into the essence of the art. Interesting times ahead, I feel.

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ID cards by the back door  

Friday, 7 March 2008

As reported on The Apalling Strangeness
According to Sky News, government ministers are changing their tack on ID cards. Instead of blatantly trying to ram them down our throats through fear, they are going to use a softer sell to ram them down our throats.

Instead of government ministers and police officers talking tough and insisting they need us to carry ID cards to beat terrorism, the emphasis will shift to persuading us that we'll be missing out if we fail to sign up to the scheme.My gut instinct says "I’ll miss out then, thank you very much."But the government has anticipated that sort of response. And now we have the muted threat behind the ID card scheme – that you are just going to miss out on some things, but really miss out on crucial things:

'Entitlement' seems to be the buzzword. The card being portrayed as the way we can access the state benefits and public services that we're entitled to.Right. So I still have to pay for an ID card to access services that I am already entitled to and have already paid for. Jesus Christ, that is a bit of a mind fuck. It is like Tesco saying "I know you’ve just bought your weekly shop, paid for it ‘n’ all, but we’re not going to let you take those goods until that you are entitled to and have paid for until you have signed up for a Clubcard. Oh, and we are going to charge you a small fucking fortune for the Clubcard as well."They'd be out of business within a week.

It doesn’t matter how you try to sell ID cards; it doesn’t matter whether you use a soft or hard sell. It doesn’t matter if you market them using Bob the Builder singing "Happy Talk". They are still an expensive mistake. They are still a shit idea. Ultimately, they are still a very dangerous idea.The government seems to think it can change the minds of those who oppose ID cards using this sort of mindless, facile tactic. No, you won’t change our minds because we know ID cards are wrong.

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Dirty humour....  

Spotted scrawled across the back of a grubby van on the M40 - "Cleaned by the NHS".

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Am I missing something here?  

Tuesday, 4 March 2008

As of yesterday, new immigration restrictions came into force in the UK. Not content with persecuting those who have spent a fortune for the dubious priviledge of coming here and have abided by all he rules, the government has now decided that even skilled immigrants to this country, that's the doctors, teachers, scientists and engineers - you know, the people with something to contribute - now have to amass "points" to retain the right to stay here or be thrown out. Meanwhile, a jobless Romanian teenage mother who has generously decided to allow the British taxpayer to feed, clothe, educate and care for her bastard offspring in perpituity can enter and stay for as long as she wants. What a brilliant bit of policy making that was.

I'm sure that as some point I must have missed some vital piece of information in this whole immigration saga, because it seems to me that the whole system is totally upside down. How can it be right that skilled and valuable people are thrown out, while the scum of Europe are given the keys to the front door and told to make themselves at home.

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