Wednesday, 26 August 2009


Hattip: Theo Spark


Like most West Ham fans and indeed a fair few from other clubs, I was appalled at the violence at yesterday's League Cup game.

I hope that the club manages to find all those who pitch invaded and ban them for life and that the police manage to find the thugs outside the ground.

But I don't think it will be that easy. The Irons did a £15 deal for the game which meant a lot of people just went along for the first and probably only time. Secondly, from what myself and other supporters are hearing, the violence outside was orchestrated a few weeks ago and may actually include other clubs' thugs.

Leaving aside my anger at the twats and Bermondsey bollocks there is one thing I am curious about -

Is English football violence an economic side effect?

Think about it. The worst violence I can remember was in the late 70s and early 80s which culmanated in the terrible Heysel deaths and the banning of English clubs from Europe.

Is it to do with unemployment? The jobless total was going up all this time and docks were being closed. Coinciding with the ban was economic growth and a reduction in unemployment levels...

We are now at around 6m unemployed.

Is it possible that the thugs, now unemployed, are either a) taking their frustration out using football as the focal point, b) Using violence to prove themselves or even c) Because they don't have jobs there is no risk of losing them if caught and shamed?

Now I know this is a broad brush and am sure there were plenty of employed people in the violence and more particularly in the pitch invasions but I was wondering whether all the talk of all-seater stadia and the growth of the rave culture being responsible wasn't more guff and that job=money=respect turns into finding respect by other means?

Another coda is that a lot of the footage seems to show 40/50-year-olds so either it's "old fashioned" values or they were on a nostalgia, erm, kick.

Tuesday, 25 August 2009


Courtesy of the Economist, an alternative take on global wages.

This is a brilliant example of relative wages and a good repost to those idiots on Thorney Island who keep harping on about ridding poverty in this country.

The only absolute poverty in this country is in ideas and attitudes.

Although, thinking about it, how long before the UK slides down that list? After all, Gordo's still got ten months to work on it!

Monday, 17 August 2009


On Tom Harris' site, there is an excellent post by Eric Joyce MP about the new paternalism. Although he agrees in principal about the smoking ban, it is a good read!

Thursday, 13 August 2009


So the Tories' past master at foot in mouth is at it again, saying that the poor MPs are on rationing and treated like shits.

However, one thing that has been missed and that Duncan has got spot on is the "nationalisation" of MPs.

Now since the party system was formalised there have always been lobby-fodder but now we are really running the risk of a lack of individuals in parliament.

With the blatent politicking of the Labour party in banning/ declaration of secondary jobs and the party lists of the Conservatives, our representatives will be even more encumbent on the party first, constituents second.

Parliament needs individuals, mavericks if you will. Good government demands that it comes to the House to argue for the rationale behind policy rather than pushing its employees through the aye lobby. Good politics demands more MPs such as Frank Field and David Davis not less.

Wednesday, 12 August 2009


SoI was watching the tedious that is the Carling Cup last night and one thing threw me -

Bury's sponsors - The local council!

Now I'm sure that some engagement officer would argue that this was a valuable use of taxpayers' money but c'mon a sponsorship? What people are watching the telly in Bury and going: "Of course the Council! Thank god I saw their logo otherwise I wouldn't have known they existed!"

Also why is a council promoting itself on a footy top? Is it expecting Bolton or Rochdale to make a play for its customers, sorry I mean citizens?

Tuesday, 11 August 2009


Since everyone is on holiday and that Harriet was initially meant to be in charge I will tell you a little story about when she first got a department job...

All was going well with her first press release at the DSS/DWP until, unknown to the press officers, Microsoft altered Harriet's surname.

Over 1,000 journalists received a press release with a quote from Harriet Hormone.



So I don't spoiler it for anyone, I won't post the image just link it but here is a screen grab of a singalong for the end of Davies' run with some interesting singers appearing!

And from the San Diego Comi-Con, a very dark and grainy look at a trailer for the last Tennant special

Monday, 10 August 2009


Well judging from some of the questions on a trivia machine maybe not but that's probably because some of the questions were, well, weird. When I was ten abstract thought wasn't a pre-requisite and I guess I had more than 30 seconds to work out a question let alone an answer.

Still got a bit of money out of the machine and some amusement from one question.

It seems the National Curriculum has decided that the government's transport policy is shite -

If you live in the remotest village in the UK, what would be the best form of transport to get to the nearest town?

a) Rail
b) Bus
c) Car
d) Plane

Correct answer c) Car

Now leaving aside that I always thought the most remote village is probably in the Orkneys so a plane would be a good bet, I am amused that car is the right answer.

Hey kids if you live in a remote area don't rely on public transport and ignore our green policy, use a car!

Friday, 7 August 2009


So I get back from holiday and my local is up in arms over CCTV.

Those black globes from the Death Star have popped up all over the pub as part of its licence renewal. Merton Council has insisted on security cameras in the pub and some of the calmest people in the world have now had a nasty shock about how much of a surveillance society we are now in.

Coupled with the smoking ban and id cards these people are now wondering how we can stop this.

So there's a lesson for the Righteous, if you had left pubs alone you may have got away with it but if guys like these are starting to get riled, what about those out there who may decide on, how shall I put it, more direct action than angry tirades about petitions?

; )

Tuesday, 4 August 2009


I really shouldn't, no I really shouldn't but...

Fancy really annoying guardinistas?

courtesy of Tom Paine


So I'm back.

While I've been away we've had twat-gate, lobbygate (or rather the start of Guido's new campaign against lobbyists.) gategate (OK I made that one up) but the one thing that I've noticed is that every bugger seems to have swine flu.


Two bar staff in my local are taking Tamiflu, friends of my daughter have it, a mate has got it.

Or have they?

I cannot shake the feeling that Tamiflu is being dolled out for the hell of it.

Cmon people it's a flu. More people die in Winter from flu then have so far. From what I understand about Tamiflu, fit (ish) people should steer clear of it unless it's absolutely necessary. It, like other anti-viral potions, should only be taken by the young, old and infirm.

It's a flu people. Plenty of rest, fluids, paracetemol and more rest. Your bodies are designed to fight these things naturally. When this comes around again, which it will, having taken tamiflu, your body will be useless in fighting it so you will have to take another variation and so the cycle continues.

Anti-virals should only be a last resort and not taken like candy.