Friday, September 30, 2005

I am anal and I know that you approve

Skivsamling.nu is a free service for everyone who wants to have their record collection easily accessible on the net. It's all very simple, you enter your records here, and then it's all set up. If you haven't figured it out yourself, "skivsamling" is "record collection" in Swedish :) I feel somewhat better about putting my recipes into a mysql database now

Thursday, September 29, 2005

High Volumes of Traffic

http://www.flickr.com/photo_zoom.gne?id=4260463&size=o&context=set-89655 Look at the amazing amount of traffic generated by the clients feeding LastFM. That is what I call 'high volume'.

ticket to ride

In a few years time it is possible that you will require your ID card to be authorised before using a computer in an internet cafe, once registered your browsing history will be automatically logged to your NIR record for at least the 6 month period defined by anti-terrorist legislation, using powerful social networking software the browsing of suspected terrorists history will allow the police to find similarly minded people who had previously fallen under the radar. Far-fetched? FEAR - Everything is true, nothing is permitted.

For how much longer will we tolerate mass murder?

BRIGHTON, England -- British Prime Minister Tony Blair has apologized to an 82-year-old man who was thrown out of the Labour Party's annual meeting after heckling Foreign Secretary Jack Straw over the Iraq war.

Blair said stewards had been "overzealous" in their treatment of Walter Wolfgang, telling British television on Thursday: "I'm really sorry about it."

Wolfgang, a veteran peace campaigner who fled Nazi Germany as a Jewish refugee to make Britain his home, shouted "nonsense" at Straw on Wednesday as he said UK troops would remain in Iraq.

Stewards grabbed Wolfgang and physically removed him from the conference hall, prompting another delegate, Steve Forrest, to shout out a complaint about his treatment.

Forrest also was ejected from the conference center on Brighton's seafront.

Wolfgang tried to re-enter the conference venue but was stopped by police using powers under the Terrorism Act and had his pass confiscated, the UK's Press Association reported.

On Thursday, Blair told BBC television: "People are perfectly entitled to freedom of speech in our country and we should celebrate that fact and I'm really sorry about what happened to Walter and I've apologized to him.

"It's just an unfortunate thing that happened. The Labour Party has apologized. The chairman of the Labour Party and I have apologized to him."

On Wednesday night, Labour officials invited Wolfgang back to the conference Thursday provided he gave assurances he would not cause a disturbance.

"The Labour Party reserves its rights to remove from the conference site people who cause a persistent disturbance. However it is clear from TV footage that the way in which Mr. Wolfgang was removed was inappropriate," a party statement said.

The incident cast a shadow over the final session of the party's annual conference, as Blair was forced to field a series of questions about Wolfgang's treatment during a round of early morning broadcast interviews.

Wolfgang, from Richmond, southwest London, said he was approached by stewards after shouting "nonsense" as Straw was speaking.

Wolfgang said: "I shouted out 'nonsense.' That's all I said. Then these two toughies came round and wanted to manhandle me out.

"I said 'Do you want me to leave? I will leave, you don't need to manhandle me.' Physically, I am not too well, so I said I would follow them.

"Most of the Labour Party stewards are very nice people. One or two people lend themselves to this nonsense."

A Labour Party member of 57 years' standing, Wolfgang said: "It makes me feel that the people who resort to these tactics are very unsure of themselves and they are on the losing side." [...]

CNN

Well DUH, and my emphasis.

All the heckling and shouting in the world will not stop these people, "wake up, time to die..." I wonder just what it would take for someone like this to resign from the Labor party? Honestly, this man is a 'Jewish refugee as who fled Nazi Germany' Illegal invasions, bogus wars, unquestioned introduction of special powers, ID cards to be issued in response to a foreign threat, and then those powers used directly on you in front of millions without consequence...COME ON, how obvious do they have to make it?

And not that we needed any proof, but they used the terrorism act on this stupid man; just as everyone said, the police will use this legislation whenever they need it for any purpose not just the prevention of "terrorism", which now includes shouting out a single word of the english language.

The only reason why this man was apologised to was because they were all caught red handed on TV. Bliar all but admitted it himself; astonishing that he believes he can be exhonerated simply by granting apologies by the high priests of new labor, as if by virtue of their rank, the apology 'makes it all ok'.

"It's just an unfortunate thing that happened." The murderers of England are the unfortunate "thing" that has happened. They took over the great house, stripped off the wood paneling of the ancient rooms and burned them simply because the central heating went off in the middle of winter.

...newsflash...

Summer is icumen in!

sensible policing

You will have no doubt heard about the heckler expelled from the Labour Party Conference yesterday and that; "When Mr Wolfgang tried to re-enter the Brighton conference venue he found himself stopped by the police under the Prevention of Terrorism Act..." This morning the PM was on the Toady programme arguing that 'common sense' would prevent his even more draconian legislation being misapplied, not to denegrate the police too much but there hardly seems to be a great deal of common sense in the application of the current legislation in regard to non-intelligence led charges (basically I'm saying the police are using any excuse to pounce on dissenting voices in the country and because the Anti-terrorism legislation is so badly defined in its scope and that it gives the police the greatest control over those arrested, they will use this greatly prejudicial and potentially blighting tool in preference to 'common sense'). It is not simply a matter of being inconvenienced in a detention room, arrest under anti-terrorism legisaltion leads a person to be flagged up as a potential risk to the nation and other countries and we know from the various false positives thrown up by US-VISIT etc that databases of this information are already not being maintained properly so false information will stick. This affects individuals rights as much as bad legislation des in the first place and is too great a matter to be left to 'common sense' - Turkey & the EU: J Straw says "Turkey would lose from a no decision. But Europe and its people would lose even more." A part of me wonders whether UK gov is so eager for Turkey to become part of the EU so the massive oil pipeline across its territory will be 'safely' within EU boundaries and therefore within Murder Inc's sphere of influence.

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

under the carpet

From Pinocchio's speech: And the way to stop the innocent dying is not to retreat, to withdraw, to hand these people over to the mercy of religious fanatics or relics of Saddam, but to stand up for their right to decide their Government in the same democratic way the British people do (With the support of 25% of the country? - mm). Now focus on Saudi Arabia, not a democracy in any sense of the word, what would be the best way for a government which so loves intervening in foreign government's policies to send a tough message that democratic principles are the only principles the UK will tolerate - because to do the opposite would be simple hypocrisy and undermine the excuse of the UK government for going to invade Iraq: Tony Blair and John Reid, the defence secretary, have been holding secret talks with Saudi Arabia in pursuit of a huge arms deal worth up to £40bn, according to diplomatic sources. [...] Defence, diplomatic and legal sources say negotiations are stalling because the Saudis are demanding three favours. These are that Britain should expel two anti-Saudi dissidents, Saad al-Faqih and Mohammed al-Masari; that British Airways should resume flights to Riyadh, currently cancelled through terrorism fears; and that a corruption investigation implicating the Saudi ruling family and BAE should be dropped. Crown prince Sultan's son-in-law, Prince Turki bin Nasr, is at the centre of a "slush fund" investigation by the Serious Fraud Office. [...] Guardian Notice the stumbling blocks don't include human rights or democratic principles. And wasn't propping up the House of Saud one of al-quaeda's original grievances against the west?

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

17 year old warriors and posters under stairs

There are many references to the activities of Peter Hain, who is described as "an implacable enemy of apartheid over many years." Other individuals mentioned who, like Hain, are now government ministers include Richard Caborn and Fiona Mactaggart. The files also contain reports of local group meetings attended by as few as six people, of whom one must have been the police informant. At one point in the 1970s Special Branch noted that a new anti-apartheid movement group had been formed in Ealing by a 17-year-old schoolboy. At another point it is noted that a member of a local group has written a letter to the Guardian in defence of Tony Benn. On occasion the most low-key form of anti-apartheid movement activity was drawn to the attention of Special Branch. In 1982 they investigated the discovery of posters in "a shed under a fire escape at the back of a factory" in Barnet. In 1984 the Surrey Police Special Branch sent the Met a confidential telegram to report that a part-time worker at Sainsbury's in Croydon "is actively passing anti-apartheid literature to other members of staff". [...] http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/4285964.stm You might well laugh at some of this, but as you finish your guffaw, think about what must be going on today, on a massive scale thanks to electronic communication. Then after you have thought about that, consider that none of the spying, reporting, and record keeping made a single bit of difference to the sucessful smashing of Apartheid. Anyone that is paranoid about targeted surveillance of blogs for example, has not paid much attention. No amount of surveillance can stop a tsunami or a hurricane or, topically, a sand storm. False Evidence Appearing Real is the greatest weapon that they have against you, and its a gun of your own ceation that you point at your own head, without anyone compelling you to do it. Peter Hain, today, a man of pure grease. Jack 'Straw Man' straw - accessory to mass murder. Both of these people in their youth were on the right side, and they can both of them, prove it. How did they both get turned to the Dark Side? It really is rather odd and horrifying to see how people go 180°....'I can overthrow the Emperor...we can make things the way we want them to be'... The darkest thought of all; Hain, Straw and the other back turners and Dark Siders are on the inside of the real truth, and are acting accordingly....Now that is truely scary...and no less probable than any other possibility.

Then there was a loud 'pop' noise....

http://wordpress.pvassar.net/index.php?p=433 A very shocking graph, even for non economists

The most otherworldly

Strip away their fake claims of grievance and see them for what they are: terrorists who use 21st century technology to fight a pre-medieval religious war that is utterly alien to the future of humankind. T. Bliar BBQ Probably the most 'parralell universe' statement he has ever made. By saying this... first of all, the people who peddle fake claims are named Bliar and the Neocons - 'Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)'. Those are the fake claims. And they are the only fake claims that matter in this case. Anyone who has a TV knows that the grievances that drive these people are anything but fake. They are absolutely real, a true outrage, really horrible and unforgivable. To say that these people's claims are 'fake' reduces them to animals; animals who don't have the right to dignity, true self determination (where THEY decide what form of government is best for them, not a cabal of murderers) and life. That is why they are doing what they are doing....uh oh, have I just justified terrrism?! 'My feet just touched Yankee soil; got to burn my boots!'. Speaking of anyone with a TV, if you have Sky and go to the numbers above 801, you can see 'The Islam Channel' that has all of the Ummacentric media you could want, in English. I guarantee you that the relevant people are watching these channels and not BBQ.

419 destroyed

419 scammer gets his life almost completely destroyed by a baiter.

Monday, September 26, 2005

Boycott Supermarkets: the evidence

And here is a photo of the protest. It covers almost all the windows on this building!

The worst example of a drop down

This site has the worst implimentation of a drop down I have ever seen. This is the worst way to create a navigable list....astonishing miles long, not sort()ed...ghastly. Perhaps the guy who made this never expected it to be popular....you know how it is, you leave something running and before you know it, the disk is full, the pot has boiled over, the cake is burning, you are out of gas, you've reached your credit limit, the battery runs out, the ice has melted....like that.

ours are no better

China: "The state bans the spreading of any news with content that is against national security and public interest," said a statement from Xinhua, the official news agency. The announcement called for blogs and personal web pages to "be directed towards serving the people and socialism and insist on correct guidance of public opinion for maintaining national and public interests". applied to the UK government proposals: "The state bans the spreading of any opinions with content that is against national security and public decorum," said a statement from BBQ, the official news agency. The announcement called for blogs and personal web pages to "be directed towards serving the people and State and insist on correct guidance of public opinion for maintaining national and public obedience". Maybe I exaggerate the current poisition but the typically inept thinking in the proposals to propogate WORDS that may indirectly blah blah terrorism amounts to pretty much the same thing (or is about two doors away). Lord Faulkner (whe of best friendliness to the PM) was on the radio trying to say the legislation will be used to cach phrases such as "I think the London bombings were a good idea ... and I hope that such actions will be made in the future". I'd question whether such a statement was indirect incitement, but the Lord knows that the real intent of the legislation is to suppress any 'extremist' viewpoint and substitute government musings and suppositions as fact, and legislate accordingly.

dual purpose

The Register reports that: The US Army has asked companies to bid for contracts to produce large quantities of anthrax and equipment to produce other unnamed biological agents ... the same equipment could easily be put to use to grow spores of the lethal Ames strain, and it is this that has raised eyebrows. Of course you must realise that this is not blatant hypocrisy in regard to the 'dual purpose' capabilities of the Iranian nuclear program the the US government is using to censure the Iranian government and no doubt eventually invade, sorry, establish democracy.

Pensioners lead the way

Prison for tax protest pensioner

A retired social worker from Devon has become the first woman pensioner to be jailed in England for refusing to pay her council tax. Ms Hardy was cheered by supporters when she arrived at court, complete with a packed bag in expectation of serving a jail term. She was jailed after missing a deadline to settle arrears of £53.71. She said she was not afraid of going to prison. Before the case she said: "If we pay it now, if they keep on increasing the taxes like they are doing, we eventually won't be able to afford to pay the bills and then we will have no existence at all, no quality of life at all. "We'll just have to sit at our homes and do nothing. That is not for me." When told that it would cost tax-payers' more to send her to prison than it would for her to pay, she said: "What we're doing now could save them money in the long-run. [...] http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/devon/4280040.stm The old people in this country have got the right idea. Now imagine the ten million people who are against the illegal occupation in Iraq taking a similar disobedient action. It would cause a total panic in government and would initiate a 180° policy turnaround. Nothing strikes fear into the heart of government more than mass tax disobedience. The stop war people should replace their planning team with OAPs - it looks like they are the only ones that have a got a grip!

date for your diary

One here for London based people...first BCG live performance for quite some time, notobemissed imho. Sunday 2 October, 2pm, arch Bruce Gilbert An improvisation using analogue and digital sound-modifying devices. Parts of the performance will be dependent on the physical and acoustic qualities of the performing area. Be warned some of the sounds may be of an extreme or loud nature. Free entry. No booking necessary. Beaconsfield 22 Newport St, SE11 6AY 020 7582 6465

Sunday, September 25, 2005

what sort of solution?

More marching?!

Incredibly the Stop War people are STILL marching. Thoussands of drones turned out again, on their own time (a Saturday) and at their ownn expense, to march, the same way they did last time. Something is terribly, frighteningly wrong with this behaviour. We all know that this marching business (after having had to test it for one last time) simply doesn't work to bring about policy changes. What kind of person keeps putting their hand in the fire after feeling the ferocious pain and smelling the singed flesh? They have even written a letter, signed by the great and the good (except Billy Bragg, he is niether great nor good) for what purpose heaven only knows. A million letters a million marchers none of it will do any good against people who will not be moved and who have absolute power. The only thing that will stop this outrage, and the outrage being planned on Iran is a complete withdrawing of all monies that are given to the government, en masse until they get the message that warmongering with your money is not going to be permitted, full stop. You will note that there has just been an announcement that there is yet another cash crisis in the NHS. It is absurd that billions of pounds are spend on these murderous and counterproductive adventures while everything falls to pieces all around us...this is perfectly clear. What is NOT clear is why people still believe that marching and petitioning are usefull tools. A hammer that cannot drive in a nail would be discarded after the first failure; marching and petitioning are precisely the same, and should have been thrown out long ago. It's high time that these people connect the dots and take an action that will actually have a result, or, go home stop blocking up the streets with their useless and self promoting displays of lemming logic, which not only has been proven not to work, but which actually gets people killed and takes away your liberty as the victims become ever more brutalized and hell bent on revenge. Finally, some of these pathetic creatures have been flypostering all over London with calls to march. Honestly, these people are beyond the pale.

Friday, September 23, 2005

Quelle Attitude!

Guide aims to help bloggers beat censors

Thursday, September 22, 2005 Posted: 1457 GMT (2257 HKT)
story.handbook.ap.jpg
Copies of the handbook are displayed at the Apple Expo computer show in Paris.

RELATED

PARIS, France (AP) -- A Paris-based media watchdog has released an ABC guide of tips for bloggers and dissidents to sneak past Internet censors in countries from China to Iran.

Reporters Without Borders' "Handbook for Blogger and Cyber-Dissidents" is partly financed by the French government and includes technical advice on how to remain anonymous online. [...] http://edition.cnn.com/2005/TECH/internet/09/22/blog.handbook.ap/index.html ??!! This is the same French government that banned and then u-turned the use of cryptography by individuals not so long ago...hmmmm! Now thats what I call a 'u-turn'. Perhaps in their next u-turn they will promote the production of GSM telephones with real public key encryption so that everyone's calls cant be intercepted and listened to at will, like they are now. This would be another real u-turn because it was the French that developed the crackable / crippleable A5 algorithm that is used in all GSM phones. Here is a link to the guide.

Thursday, September 22, 2005

Ethical Network

http://ethicalnetwork.org/essays/supermarkets.php A huge (and I mean HUGE) three story tall banner covering the entire facade of a house in central london has gone up to promote the above website. We have one farmers market every saturday morning near us, which we go to...great meat and pastry stalls, vegetable stall with edible flowers and yellow carrots on sale...excellent.

Portable devices rendered useless

2005-07-28 Thursday - Southwark, London 19:10 From my workplace in Southwark, South London, I arrange by text message (SMS) to meet my girlfriend at Hanover Square. To save time – as I suppose – I decide to the take the tube to Bond Street instead of my usual bus. I am wearing greenish Merrell shoes, black trousers, t-shirt, black lightweight Gap jumper, dark grey/black light rainproof Schott jacket and grey Top Shop cap. I am carrying a black rucksack I use as a workbag. 19:21 I enter Southwark tube station, passing uniformed police officers by the entrance, and more police beyond the gate. I walk down to the platform, peering down to see the steps as, thanks to a small eye infection, I'm wearing specs instead of my usual contact lenses. The platform is mostly empty. The next train is scheduled to arrive in a few minutes. As other people drift onto the platform, I sit down against the wall with my rucksack still on my back. I check for messages on my phone, then take out a printout of an article about Wikipedia from inside jacket pocket and begin to read. The train enters the station. Police officers, all uniformed men, appear on the platform and surround me. They ask me to take off my rucksack. They must immediately notice my French accent, still strong after living more than 12 years in London. They handcuff me – hands behind my back (the handcuffs have a rigid bar between the two cuffs – i.e. not like the ones often shown on TV). They take my rucksack out of my sight. They explain that this is for my safety, and that they are acting under the authority of the Terrorism Act. I am told that I am being stopped and searched because they found my behaviour suspicious (from direct observation and then from watching me on the CCTV system): I went into the station without looking at the police officers at the entrance or by the gates, i.e. I was ‘avoiding them’ two other men entered the station at about the same time as me I am wearing a jacket ‘too warm for the season’ I am carrying a bulky rucksack I kept my rucksack with me at all times (I had it on my back) I looked at people coming on the platform I played with my mobile phone and then took a paper from inside my jacket. They empty the content of all my pockets into two of their helmets and search me. They loosen my belt. [...]
This is particularly relevant given the EU's new plans on cross-border
sharing of police databases:
http://www.edri.org/edrigram/number3.19/dataprotection

The weather was too cold for the season

So, basically the Police have decided that wearing a rain jacket,
carrying a rucksack with a laptop inside, looking down at the steps
while going in a tube station and checking your phone for messages just
tick too many checkmarks on their checklist and make you a terrorist
suspect. How many other people are not only wrongly detained but wrongly
arrested every week in similar circumstances as myself? And how many of
them are also computer and telecoms enthusiasts that fit the Police's
terrorist behavioural profile so well? I accept and understand spot
checks can be useful, but profiling... this would be a joke if it didn't
affect many ‘innocent bystanders’.

The officers must have failed to hear the Met Commissioner Sir Ian Blair
when he claimed ‘We are not in the business of stopping and searching
people who fit a particular profile.’

Interestingly, while a police officer did state that my rain jacket ‘too
warm for the season’, could it have been instead that the weather was
too cold for the season? This is what the other Met, the Met Office had
to say about the weather the day before: ‘London recorded its coldest
July day for 25 years on the 27th when temperatures only reached 15.6
°C.’ At least I'm still alive and, over a month later, no longer under
arrest.

The Police eventually decided to take No Further Action (NFA): ‘a
decision not to proceed with a prosecution’. In a democratic country
such as the UK, one would be forgiven for naively thinking that this is
the end of the matter. Under the current laws the Police are not only
entitled to keep my fingerprints and DNA samples, but apparently,
according to my solicitor, they are also entitled to hold on to what
they gathered during their investigation: notepads of the arresting
officers, photographs, interviewing tapes and any other documents they
collected and entered in the Police National Computer (PNC). (Also, at
the time of this writing, I still have no letter stating that I'm
effectively off the hook and I still haven't been given any of my
possessions back.)

Aren't the Police supposed to keep tabs only on convicted criminals and
individuals under investigation? So even though the Police consider me
innocent, otherwise they would have had a duty to prosecute me, there
will remain some mention (what exactly?) in the PNC and, if they fully
share their information with Interpol, in other Police databases around
the world as well. Isn't a state that keeps files on innocent persons a
police state?

This gradual erosion of our fundamental liberties should be of concern
to us all.

http://gizmonaut.net/bits/suspect.html
http://www.guardian.co.uk/attackonlondon/story/0,16132,1575532,00.html

This is real horrorshow, but something amazing about this story stands out to me. Days after the bombs went off in London, I was continually astonished to see people walking around with black backpacks similar to the ones used by the bombers. Even people who looked like the bombers were wearing them. Now, if we are talking about a place where a volcano is spilling out lava, destroying all the houses and covering the roads, you dont go there to eat lunch, do you? I know perfectly well that you have the right to wear whateve you want whenever you want, but if you know in advance that the police are using profiles to stop people, how stupid do you have to be to go out into the street, and then onto the Underground, deliberately fitting the profile? You can use any type of bag to carry your junk; why would you deliberately use a bag that is the same as the bags used by those dimwits? Obviously you can't change what you look like, but this isn't about that. This is about being reckless in a war zone, where the police have been given powers to destroy you just because you don't look right. Only a totally fast asleep fool would keep using a bag like that, knowing what everyone now knows about the modus operandi of these very stupid bombers. There is not a single person in the whole of the UK that does not know that the bombers who blew themselvs up in London wore dark backpacks. If you wear one in the streets of London, and then go onto the underground with it, you are insane. I have sympathy for anyone stopped by the police for no reason, but if you go out and provoke them, well, like jumping into a stream of lava, you can expect to be burned, and you will get no sympathy from me. What is happening in the UK is not a joke. It is not fun and games. It is real, and it deserves a real response from everyone who lives here. My advice to you is do not provoke the police into destroying you. Stay off of the Underground. Make sure that in your clothing and the places you go, you do not fit the profile by changing everything that you can change to cause a mismatch. If you want to restore the UK to what it was, then this is the first step to doing it. Change your behaviour --- can you imagine what it would be like if everyone stopped using the stations where this arrest happened? This is the only signal that the mass of people can give, indicating that we will not live for one second in a police state. Sadly, most people don't have any imagination at all, and are quite willing to carry on as if nothing is wrong. Some will even blame the people who are the victims; I just now, have poured scorn on this man for carrying the wrong type of bag. Imagination however, is crucial. Imagine if it was you that was arrested simply because you fit the profile? Imagine the humiliaton the fear...its not hard to do, and once you put yourself in someone else's shoes, you can understand the horror almost first hand, and that should be enough to spur you to act. Or not act as appropriate. I wonder how many people have to be stopped before everyone wakes up and takes notice. Really, it should only take one, but thanks to the low imagination rates, that isn't enough. Indeed, they have already KILLED one man and no one's behaviour changed, so why should we be concerned about this man who was stopped with a black backpack. It's the laptop!

Alberta has Free Money

Some Albertans skeptical of Klein's promised flurry of $400 cheques EDMONTON (CP) - It's one storm that might be welcome in many parts of Alberta this winter - a blizzard of $400 cheques that Premier Ralph Klein has promised for every man, woman and child lucky enough to live here.

The "prosperity bonus" is aimed at giving Joe and Jane Lunchbucket a concrete, tax-free share of the province's gushing oil riches.

You'd think giving away $1.4 billion wouldn't be that difficult, but Finance Department staff were left scrambling Wednesday to figure out how to make it happen by year-end.

[...]

That's right. Alberta's No. 1 Despot plans to buy the all-too eager public into complacency. While this article makes it seem like many people are questioning the policy, my own cynicism tells me to think otherwise (though I would hope to be proven wrong). The people of Alberta all too often play into this government's lazy, unimaginative tricks. I can see so many people just spending it as fast as they can on some useless commodity. Because really, that's the Albertan way. It doesn't matter what you buy, all that matters is that you spend your money as fast as possible.

I don't really want to look this gift horse in the mouth, but I will. Every Albertan should be insulted by this diversionary tactic. This government has so brutally dismantled education, senior's care, prisons, and health care (the latter in an effort to sneak in private third-party health care rather than reforming what we've got), that it seems odd that it would just throw all this money around rather than put it to some constructive use; especially since many of the people it's throwing the money to have no idea how to properly spend it (yeah, I'm blatantly insulting a large portion of Alberta's population - I went there).

It is baffling how many people think that the government's interests are the same as their own. Surreal. Freedom is Slavery!

On another note, this 'gift' would probably be bigger had Alberta not given away several very lucrative Natural Gas and Oil contracts to the United States. It was practically robbery, considering how many more royalties we'd be getting. But that's another story and it's late.

But but I could complain more! How about electricity and insurance deregulation?? What about the Alberta Flat Tax ?!! AAAGHH! *hemorrhage**

Fine, I'll just point you to some other blogger who is whining. (that's the word Ralph Klein uses to describe critics, interchangeable with "yippers")

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Ben Jeffrey: PIG!

A member of the public being shown the biometric technology
The Home Office display was a hit with shoppers at Merry Hill

A typical response about the desirability of such measures comes from Barry Burton, from nearby Netherton.

If the ID card didn't exist, this would all still be happening
Home Office spokesperson

"I'm all for making everything more secure," he says. "If you've got nothing to hide, you've nothing to fear."

The roadshow is on stop three of a seven-day tour of the UK, in what has been described as a "charm offensive" to promote biometric passports and, ultimately, the government's ID card scheme, which will also rely on biometric technology.

[...]

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/west_midlands/4261858.stm

A fine piece of biased garbage by 'Ben Jeffrey' BBQ shill and professional lie spreader. I can say this with total confidence, because there is no way that a writer of any quality (and the BBQ only hires quality people right?) would know that this phrase that I emphaquoth is one of the stock phrases of the apologists and the ignorant. It is so often used that it has become a cliche. Only an insider would print that as a genuine statement from a real punter, and if he DID come across someone who made this statement, he should not have included it, were he an honest person, because he well knows that this is not in any way a correct way of thinking aobut this issue. We can therefore say that this pig is a jackass. Also, look at the upside down crazy anonymous 'Home Office Spokesman' doublespeak pullquote, and the doublecrazy caption stating that it was a 'hit with the shoppers'. Listen BUSTER you are going to have to do MUCH BETTER THAN THIS, or get another inside job spreading lies, disinformation and absolute nonsense on another website.

They must believe that people in the UK are amongst the stupidest in the world to write such a thing and get away with it. For your information JACKASS the British are amongst the smartest per capita on earth, and they laugh at these pathetic word tricks and outright lies that you try to spread.

I would like to know who, as in the NAME of the person who has editorial control over the articles that appear on the BBQ site. Someone MUST check off each article, and really, these names should be prepended to every article that appears on the site so that we can monitor bias.

It's all very well signing up for creative commons and all that, but BBQ News needs to be more accountable on the article level. 'And why not?' as Barry Norman used to say; why not give all of these details at the end of each article? Time constraints cannot be given as an excuse, since the time it takes to read and approve an article will not be increased by 'signing' it - what exactly does the BBQ have to hide? Why should there not be a profile of every writer that works for the BBQ news service?

The fact is, they need to hide these details because it would then be trivial to expose bias in the articles, and the BBQ administration don't want that.

fickle technology

Fate is a funny old thing isn't it? Whilst CCTV footage from the 28th of June can still be found showing the London suicide bombers doing a dummy run, still no footage from Stockwell station of the de Menezes shooting, oh I forgot none of the cameras could produce any useful footage. Hmmmm. - Tesco: Have they bought into BT/BG Group's database with passport etc. details? And if not, who's not doing their job properly? You're fired!

The buck stops here

it's a horror story. Why hasn't this been discussed more? The buck stops here. YOU need to discuss it; in detail. precisely WHY is it a horror story? You are a programmer, you know why its terrible, so spell it out!

TESCO KNOWS ALL

Tesco stocks up on inside knowledge of shoppers' lives Tesco is quietly building a profile of you, along with every individual in the country - a map of personality, travel habits, shopping preferences and even how charitable and eco-friendly you are. A subsidiary of the supermarket chain has set up a database, called Crucible, that is collating detailed information on every household in the UK, whether they choose to shop at the retailer or not. I saw this on the newspaper round up on BBC News 24 Monday evening, it's a horror story. Why hasn't this been discussed more?

This next song has four letters in the title and it starts with an E

Blogdial is going in a new design direction Huh. Blogdial is a community that has a very slow growth. Blogdial is a group blog with more than 50 members. Blogdial is an example of the other take. Blogdial is Irdials blog where you can read daily issues that are discussed. what is it? It's it.

Sheer Brilliance

Like the guys who sell land plots on the moon, these guys: http://www.milliondollarhomepage.com/ are genius.

snorts of derision

hottypottytotty

Lookdown!

The B-2 at Palmdale

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2005/09/20/google_earth_democracy_two/page3.html

That would be number three

http://www.rizzn.com/2005/09/kate-moss-does-coke-world-takes.asp It's number three. And there is no number six. I am number two.

Students for Orwell

For a long while I have been wanting to see a quick, concise "clearinghouse" with links for many of the very horrible things that have been going on in the past few years, many of the things we talk about here at BLOGDIAL. Students for Orwell seems to be doing a pretty good job so far. Way to go!

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

true or false

There’s nothing hotter than an anorexic coke whore with a potty mouth.

The Guardian Discovers Skype

It is obvious now that such gatherings are the future. With the proliferation of broadband and the increasing availability of free internet telephony, it is possible to plonk a computer on your dinner table and enjoy a virtual meal with a distant friend. Soon, when everyone has an internet telephone service, it should be possible to have a room full of virtual guests. But why wait? With a little ingenuity, we decided to attempt the future today. Well, the day before yesterday. We conduct the experiment using Skype the pioneering internet telephone service provider purchased recently by eBay, mainly because it works on our Guardian-issue iBooks and connects to landlines. If we limited ourselves to other Skype clients we could not assemble such a stellar guest list. Along with Agnès, novelist Rick Moody (New York), gossip columnist Paula Froelich (also New York), comedians Wil Hodgson (Chippenham) and Lucy Porter (London) and lottery winner Elaine Thompson (Lyme Regis) have all agreed to take part in the groundbreaking tea party experiment. [...] The Guardian My word, is this really THE BEST that they can churn out over there?

Monday, September 19, 2005

BLUTO or BRUTUS

Popeye faced a different opponent in almost every adventure. Halfway through 1932, Segar wrote a narrative titled, "The Eighth Sea". A fearless fiend named, 'Bluto the Terrible' was introduced into this story. He was treated as a 'throwaway' character, the same way that Segar had originally planned to handle Popeye when he debuted in January of 1929. In the case of Bluto, Segar never returned him after Popeye was allowed to engage him in a bloody battle and defeat him with his legendary 'twisker punch'.

The following year Popeye made his motion picture debut at the hands of Max and Dave Fleischer. To add some spice to the cartoon, Olive Oyl was cast in the role of the jealous girlfriend, but the Fleischer's wanted to really spice things up, so they resurrected Bluto to be Popeye's on screen 'enemy'. He was immediately accepted as Popeye's number one nemesis.

In 1956, the old theatrical cartoons were released to television. The 'Popeye' phenomenon met an entirely new group of fans - the 'Baby Boomers'. Popeye's popularity soared. The kiddies of the 'nifty fifties' were consuming the cartoons faster than Popeye could open his can of spinach. King Features Syndicate recognized the potential of their animated adventurer - so 220 new cartoons were ordered. BUT there was a problem, the Disney organization complained that Bluto sounded too much like Pluto. To avoid legal hassles, Brutus made his screen debut in 1960's

For the next 18 years, Brutus was Popeye's formidable foe. In 1978, Hanna-Barbera introduced, "The All New Adventures of Popeye" - (aka "The Popeye Hour"), and Bluto was returned to the stories. Unfortunately, Brutus was not. It's too bad, because the cartoon series might have been fun with the two bad guys teaming-up against good guy Popeye.

http://www.popeye-n-olive.com/snipplets.html

Shivver me timbers.....

It be today....arrrrrr..

Confidence

How can I build my confidence?

Sunday, September 18, 2005

Saturday, September 17, 2005

ride free

The Liberator?

What is this? Guess

That looks like a breakthrough in bicycle seat design, specifically for men!

What is it?

What is this? Can you guess?

Beeb: it's only a problem for the Other

Notice how in this BBC report that the new idiotic proposals are referred to only as problems Muslims will have to face. Bookshops would not be targeted, only Islamic bookshops will be targeted - riiiiiight. Because in this day and age, even bookshops have religious persuasions and need to be lumped into their own seperate categories. Will the gov't have a plan to label each bookstore in the nation, to mark off which ones get affected by the "terror laws" and which don't? I bloody well think not! This is the exact kind of swindle the gov't wants to get on with - to imply that these proposals will not affect the average Briton's way of life (a gross undercurrent of this thought is that the gov't does not consider Muslims to be average Britons - it has cut them off from the general population). That is, of course, a total and utter lie. This affects everybody because everybody speaks. I should get back to work... eep! Analysis: Muslim fears at terror plans By Dominic Casciani BBC News community affairs ... For his part, the prime minister has been clear about why he thinks these laws are needed. He also believes civil liberty fears are being "exaggerated" and that with rights come responsibilities. Key measures One of the proposals already exercising Muslim opinion is the plan to outlaw "glorification" of terrorism. How this will work in practice remains to be seen but already critics, including the leading Muslim organisations, claim it may be unworkable. If one of the students in that essay-writing competition remarked that Palestinian suicide bombings were justified as a weapon of last resort against a powerful enemy - a view held by some, but by no means all Muslims in the West - would that constitute glorification? Bookshops Another key proposal comes from widespread concern in security circles over so-called "Islamic bookshops". Typically, the most controversial works are written, published and translated abroad by authors with little relationship with or understanding of modern Western culture - but the government proposes new powers to tackle shops selling extremist material. Fuad Nahdi, publisher of Q news, a leading current affairs magazine among Muslims in Britain, has said in the past that some of these bookshops circulate a "filth" which has poisoned the core message of Islam. ...

Friday, September 16, 2005

Hitchens vs Galloway Debate

Hitchens vs Galloway Debate

http://www.mininova.org/tor/110272

Hegemony!

CUBAN National Assembly speaker Ricardo Alarcon has accused the United States of trying to turn the United Nations into "an instrument of its global dictatorship".

Speaking on behalf of Cuba at the closing session of the three-day world summit here, Alarcon echoed criticism expressed on Thursday by Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez of conditions in which the UN reform package was approved by the UN General Assembly.

"We are witnessing an unforgivable fraud," he said.

As the UN blueprint to restructure the world body was approved by the General Assembly on Tuesday, Cuba's UN delegate Abelardo Moreno raised objections about what he called "distortions" added to the text.

"Particular emphasis was given to the interests of a number of powerful countries to the detriment of smaller countries and underdeveloped countries," he noted.

"Those who see themselves as masters of the planet do not want to remember promises" of the Millenium Declaration," Alarcon said overnight, referring to poverty reduction goals set by world leaders here five years ago.

"They try to impose a so-called reform of the United Nations which only aims to completely dominate the organisation and turn it into an instrument of their global dictatorship," Alarcon said.

These "masters of the world want to make war and hegemonism norms that the whole world should follow without protest. In the process, with the help of docile spokesmen, they flout the (UN) Charter, seek to reduce the Secretariat into a slavish tool and insult the Assembly and the world."

On Thursday, Venezuela's President Hugo Chavez called the United States a "terrorist state" and said the United Nations headquarters should be moved away from New York.

The outspoken Chavez littered his speech to the UN world summit with anti-US comments which were strongly applauded. Chavez, a strong ally of Cuba's President Fidel Castro, followed this up with a press conference at which he accused the US administration of supporting terrorism.

To loud applause he took up the call of Latin American revolutionary Simon Bolivar for the UN headquarters to be moved to "an international city" in the southern hemisphere.

"It is time to think about an international city," he said.

[...]

http://www.news.com.au/

also at:

Prensa Latina

Viva Fidel!

http://www.radiohc.org/Distributions/Radio_Havana_English/

Call the Church! Call the Police! Call the Church Police!

Thanks for the goodies, Anthony! Re: Impossible Proposals I second every thought already written here about this. First of all, what would even constitute as terrorist material? It's completely up to whoever is in power. It's such a subjective thing it becomes utterly meaningless. As such, it will come to encompass such a wide variety of different things that it would start banning speech that isn't even close to whatever "terrorism" means. What if someone wants to study hateful speech at university? It won't be possible. No discussion and dissemination will be able to take place in public. No analysis, no opinions expressed. This proposal is for the institution of the Thought Police, and I am not resorting to hyperbole at ALL.

Infallibliar, and assumption the mother of all teh f00bar

Wikipedia...it's good for something!

go on, just one more

something for the weekend

something found lurking in a dusty corner ...
track 1 ... track 2 ... track 3
enlightenment

Learning from the Soviets

This could get incredibly silly GET silly?! I know what you mean of course... Can you imagine the Jihadists and people just interested in reading what they have to say turning to a Samizdat system of publishing their forbidden thoughts? What do you think they would call it...hmmmm "Jihadizdat"... "Islamizdat" ... "Ummadat"... hmmmmm Whatever they decide to call it, you can bet that they will do it, or its modern equivalent, and their words will be more widely read than ever, simply because they are forbidden.

Say you want a Revolution?

nPod Shuffle? http://gillen.cream.org/wordpress_html/?p=729 http://www.eurogamer.net/article.php?article_id=60913 http://media.cube.ign.com/articles/651/651334/vids_1.html http://www.1up.com/do/newsStory?cId=3143782

indirect

(e) makes available to others (whether electronically or otherwise) a facility for enabling them to obtain, read, listen to or look at such a publication This could get incredibly silly, consider this statement: If you go to the wikipedia website, the entry for the UNAbomber has a link to the UNAbomber Manifesto. or even: If you google for unabomber manifesto you will find a link to the UNAbomber manifesto. Ludicrous examples but they aren't ruled out of being covered by the proposed legislation, is the UK government going to try to censor google and wikipedia?

Impossible Proposals

Terror Bill targets bookshops and extends detention
By Sam Knight, Times Online, 15/9/05

Terrorism suspects will be held for up to three months without charge
and booksellers who stock publications that encourage extremist violence
could be imprisoned, under proposed legislation published today...

In a document accompanying the proposed legislation, the Home Office
explained that police need to be able to hold terrorism suspects for
longer while investigators examine CCTV footage, encrypted electronic
evidence and international terror networks...

http://www.timesonline.co.uk
~~
3 Dissemination of terrorist publications

(1) A person commits an offence if he—
(a) distributes or circulates a terrorist publication;
(b) gives, sells or lends such a publication;
(c) offers such a publication for sale or loan;
(d) transmits the contents of such a publication electronically;
(e) makes available to others (whether electronically or otherwise) a
facility for enabling them to obtain, read, listen to or look at such a
publication, or to acquire it by means of a gift, sale or loan; or
(f) has such a publication in his possession with a view to its becoming the
subject of conduct falling with any of paragraphs (a) to (e).

(9) A person guilty of an offence under this section shall be liable—
(a) on conviction on indictment, to imprisonment

(11) In this section “publication” means an article or record of any
description that
contains any of the following, or any combination of them—
(a) matter to be read;
(b) matter to be listened to;
(c) matter to be looked at or watched;
and references in this section to what is contained in an article or
record include references to anything that is embodied or stored in or on it and to
anything that may be reproduced from it using apparatus designed or adapted for the
purpose.

(12) In this section—
“article” includes anything for storing data;
“lend” includes let on hire, and “loan” is to be construed accordingly;
“record” means a record so far as not comprised in an article, including a
temporary record created electronically and existing solely in the
course of, and for the purposes of, the transmission of the whole or a
part of its contents.

draftbill.pdf

[...]

You think? Lets go through this step by step.
 (1) A person commits an offence if he—
(a) distributes or circulates a terrorist publication;

No, because everyone has the right to publish whatever they want without restriction in a free country. This includes any sort of opinion that you may care to express. If not, then there would have to be a class of opinion designated as 'terrorist opinion' meaning that it would then be impossible to write something like "It is my opinion that Guy Fawlkes was right, and the House of Commos should be blown to bits."

Clearly that is not on.

(b) gives, sells or lends such a publication;

everyone has the right to read whatever they like, and to sell or lend any type of book that they like. Obviously I am not talking about publications covered by obscenity laws; I am talking only about books that publish opinions and facts. Lenders have the right to set up whatever type of library they like, subject to the copyright laws.

This part doesn't work either.

(c) offers such a publication for sale or loan;

Same for above. You cannot stop people from offering books and pamphlets for sale or loan just because you dont like the opinion or philosophy espoused in the text.

(d) transmits the contents of such a publication electronically;

??!! This would make it illegal to send texts via email, simply because the content is objectionable to Bliar and his cabal of stinky murderers. Transmit covers sending text to a blog server in another jurisdiction, so they could use this to stop people in the UK publishing blogs on servers in other countries. Theoretically.

(e) makes available to others (whether electronically or otherwise) a
facility for enabling them to obtain, read, listen to or look at such a
publication, or to acquire it by means of a gift, sale or loan; or

Mail order services would not be able to send books to you by mail on banned subjects. Streaming servers on the internet would not be able to stream you audio without being liable. Any blog server hosting a PDF of a publication would be subject to this. Ebay would not be able to auction these publications. Its totally absurd on its face.

(f) has such a publication in his possession with a view to its becoming the
subject of conduct falling with any of paragraphs (a) to (e).

So, does this mean that you can posess these texts for your own use, but you cannot posess it if you want to lend it transmit it sell it or make it available? Is this like 'not inhaling'?

(9) A person guilty of an offence under this section shall be liable—
(a) on conviction on indictment, to imprisonment

What-ever.

(11) In this section “publication” means an article or record of any description that
contains any of the following, or any combination of them—
(a) matter to be read;
(b) matter to be listened to;
(c) matter to be looked at or watched;
and references in this section to what is contained in an article or
record include references to anything that is embodied or stored in or on it and to
anything that may be reproduced from it using apparatus designed or adapted for the
purpose.

This of course, means blogs, websites, photocopies, books, CDs audio files etc etc. Ogrish.com from where you can get uncensored videos released by the 'insurgents' regularly will immediately fall foul of these regulations.

(12) In this section—
“article” includes anything for storing data;
“lend” includes let on hire, and “loan” is to be construed accordingly;
“record” means a record so far as not comprised in an article, including a
temporary record created electronically and existing solely in the
course of, and for the purposes of, the transmission of the whole or a
part of its contents.

Heh. Whoever wrote this must understand what a cache is.


These proposals are illegal, cannot work to achieve their stated aim and are an affront to all decent people.

This proposed nonsense is useless unless every country everywhere institutes regulations of an identical nature. This is probably why, during his classic insane neurolinguistic doubletalk rant at the UN, Bliar urged every government to introduce measures like this. The fact of the matter is, the USA, for all its faults will NEVER do it, meaning that anyone at any time will be able to read whatever they want whenever they want, for the duration of this absurd time.

Speaking of The Untruthful one's speech at the UN it would be nice to read a rebuttal by a historian of all these problems to this oft repeated claim that motivation of 'terrorists' has nothing to do with western foreign policy. This sort of nonsense simply cannot be left to stand unchallenged. Someone somewhere must have done it subsequent to that sickening speech...

Long time no posts...

Hello, this is what I sound like. Captain, I love your voice, thank you so much for it. Congrats Claus, You made it

there there ...


buy the t-shirt, let everyone know we're at risk, and support a worthy cause ... go on, you know you want to ...

we need a database non-proliferation treaty

Newcastle Building Society, which has assets under management of £3.4 billion, has turned to identity authentication company GB Group to combat fraud and ensure its compliance with money laundering regulations. Very nice I'm sure but not what we're interested in, although that ~£3bn is a nice touch, for that we want read below: It does this by checking information supplied by customers against a powerful database owned by GB Group and BT, which contains 71 million DVLA and passport records, over 5.7 million international population data files and numerous bereavement registers. Following comparison, a “match” or “no match” report is produced, allowing Newcastle Building Society to accept the customer or request additional information for them to prove their identity[...] here Isn't there supposed to some sort of Data Protection Act in this country? How do BT and GB Group get their mits on 71 million DVLA and Passport records, even if they are provided to BT as proof of identity for using their services surely it can't be right that these records are used for other purposes or does this come under the nefarious 'Third Parties' that we have to tick box against? And I'd certainly be interested to know what 'international population data files' are. In any case it is quite apparent that if the NIR is achieved and businesses are allowed direct access to the information, even if gated, those records are going to get into the public domain and be sold like cheesecloth, and sooner or later very personal information is going to float from 'security cleared' companies to uncleared companies. - Whilst on the subject here's an object lesson in irony, the same government that is trying to create a 'foolproof' biometric identity scheme "for our security" is offering supergrass deals to the people alleged to be security threats and in return they can be given new identities under witness protection schemes. Joined up thinking don't you just love it.

OMG!

That made my day, six times around the sun and back!

Thursday, September 15, 2005

new trend...record your voice

Hello, this is what I sound like.

Dutch to Open Electronic Files on Children

AMSTERDAM, Netherlands - The Dutch government plans to open an electronic file on every child at birth as a tool to spot and protect the troubled kids of the future.

Beginning Jan. 1, 2007, all citizens will be tracked from cradle to grave in a single database — including health, education, family and police records — the health ministry said Tuesday.

As a privacy safeguard, no single person or agency will be able to access all contents of a file. But organizations can raise "red flags" in the dossier to caution other agencies about problems, ministry spokesman Jan Brouwer said.

The intention is to protect troubled children, Brouwer said. Until now, schools and police have been unable to communicate with each other about truancy records and criminality, which are often linked.

"Child protection services will say, 'Hey, there's a warning flag from the police. There's another one from school. There's another one from the doctor," Brouwer said. "Something must be going on and it's time to call the parents in for a meeting."

Every child will get a Citizens Service Number, making it easier to keep track of children with problems even when their families move, said Secretary of Health Clemence Ross.

"Safety, guidance, education and supervision are incredibly important for the development of children," Ross said.

All Dutch births are currently registered with local authorities. [...]

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20050913/ap_on_re_eu/netherlands_child_files

This makes me sick to my stomach.

As a privacy safeguard, no single person or agency will be able to access all contents of a file.

That is a lie.

The intention is to protect troubled children,

these children need protection, its true. Protection from THE STATE.

"Something must be going on and it's time to call the parents in for a meeting."

This is not a dream, this is REAL. Its actually happening, and these people who promote it and who are creating it think that its perfectly acceptable and reasonable and desireable.

Citizens Service Number

see how they couch it in gentle language, when it is anyting but gentle; this number is a branding number, burned into the child forever, from which he can never escape. No one will ever be allowed a second chance in this system, you will have your every discression recorded for future perusal. It's a horrifying, inhuman and horrible idea, and shame on the Dutch for allowing it to be created. Heh, maybe they HAVE been smoking too much pot, because you would have to be stoned to think this is a good idea, and you would have to be doubly stoned to not protest its creation.

This phrase is reverse doubletalk. This number puts the individual at the service of the state, it is not a number so that the citizen can recieve service from the state, which is how it sounds at first glance. And don't you believe for an instant that this number will not be transformed into your adult number, which will be used for everything else you can imagine and probably things you can't imagine.

"Safety, guidance, education and supervision are incredibly important for the development of children,"

That is the job of a parent, not the state. The states job is to clean the streets and catch criminals AFTER they have done a crime; it is not their job to submit people to eternal surveillance.

SHAME SHAME SHAME on you you dirty BASTARDS.

life, pt. 2

Way to go dav, for knowing what you need to do and doing it. I have been going through a short period of unemployment and it's not fun. I have gotten a new job though so hopefully things will start picking up. Good luck man. Looking for jobs is harsh. It is, however, better than dealing with a shit job doing things you'd rather not be doing at all.

Life

I quit my job.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

fishmanhead

Any one need an Authentic Human Fish Head?

Cigars are is teh r0x

smoking r0x heh, I think not: "That describes the bar food at this joint, though, I mean it literally. In this really quite lovely gastropub in Chelsea you can buy a pig’s ear to chew on for a quid. If that bit doesn’t appeal, then they also display full suckling pigs on the bar which they make rolls from (in a coupla hours they went through two pigs). I should warn anyone with a working class chip on their shoulder that The Pig’s Ear is crammed full with Tarquins, Pereguins and other fancifully named adults that no doubt wore boaters at school. There really isn’t that much space in this dark green room what with the central bar eating up most of the area. However, high-vaulted ceilings, simple but bold furnishings and massive mirrors help relieve the feeling that you’re drowning in a sea of (polite) Boho Sloaneys. A bottle of house white was £14.50, which is about right for this area, and I’ve read reviews that rave about the food should you want a bite. Just don’t fear the posh people and remember, its names they have poor taste in, not pubs." [...] And there you have it. The chef at The Pigs Ear (yes, this pub has a chef and not a cook) used to work for Gordon Ramsey. And there's more:

The Pigs Ear Bar & Dining Room - reviews bar - modern and european

"This place is the greatest find in Chelsea......great food...great wine list....great atmosphere.....not an ounce of the Chelsea pretentious attitude from the staff....they know what's needed around here....this is our local and we love it ! x" Hilary F 01/08 "Finally an authentic, no bullshit place that serves superb food without pretentious dramatics. "The Brasserie lunch/supper menu in the ground floor pub must rate as the best pub-grub in Chelsea? The gorgeous first floor Dining Room is a real find in SW3. "Loathed to share this place with you!!." MM 02/06

[...] For example. Yes indeed, we could post the details of soooooooo many pubs in London that are teh r0xorz, but then why rub it in? While we are at it, the Electric Cinema in Notting Hill (which is not a pub) does the most perfect Pork Belly... Swine. There's nothing like it.

Europe wins the power to jail British citizens

Europe wins the power to jail British citizens BRUSSELS has been given the power to compel British courts to fine or imprison people for breaking EU laws, even if the Government and Parliament are opposed.

An unprecedented ruling yesterday by the supreme court in Europe gives Brussels the power to introduce harmonised criminal law across the EU, creating for the first time a body of European criminal law that all member states must adopt. The judgment by the European Court of Justice in Luxembourg was bitterly fought by 11 EU governments, including Britain, and marks a dramatic transfer of power from national capitals to Brussels.

Diplomats said that it was political dynamite in many countries, but the European Commission welcomed the ruling, on a test case about environmental law, as a landmark that sets an important precedent. It gives the Commission the right to decide when breaches of agreed policies are so serious that they should be treated as criminal.

The Commission said that it would use its new powers only in extreme circumstances, but its officials are already talking about introducing EU crimes for overfishing, deliberate polluting, money laundering and price fixing.

EU members have always insisted that the power to set criminal law goes to the heart of national sovereignty and must be decided by national governments and parliaments. The Luxembourg judges ruled, however, that national governments could not exempt EU law from being upheld by criminal sanctions.

José Manuel Barroso, the President of the Commission, said: “This is a watershed decision. It paves the way for more democratic and more efficient lawmaking at EU level.”

A British government official said: “We firmly believed it was inappropriate to harmonise criminal law at EU level. We believe criminal law is a matter for member states co-operating intergovernmentally.” He added that they would consult other countries to consider the options, although the governments have no right of appeal against the court.

[...] http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,2-1779849,00.html This means that if you publish something in the UK that the Germans don't like, you can be arrested right here in the UK, at the order of a German, and there is nothing you can do about it, no appeal you can launch....nothing. Soon the penny will drop, that all bets are off. The rules are all broken, and something very drastic has to happen if we are to bee properly separated from our cousins with funny ideas.

White Rice is good with lamb

Rice also said she believes the Hurricane Katrina disaster provides an opportunity for Americans to launch a comprehensive attack on poverty. There is something else here at work, that I have noticed in many journalistic reports as well as what Rice just said. Everyone keeps on saying this disaster has "revealed" poverty conditions in America. Like this is some kind of new thing. As if suddenly, overnight, people were made poor. As if these "third-world" conditions are stunning new revelations. How does this disaster provide an opportunity to attack poverty? There has ALWAYS been a chance to attack poverty because it's always been there, the gov't just doesn't CARE about it (the last time it did was probably towards the end of the Depression w/ the New Deal). Well get this, media. There have always been poor people in America. America is not a land of perfect race relations and is not unstratified. You (the media) have all just been too stupid and too deluded to actually say anything about it, poisoned by the phantom that is the American dream. Only the real reporters have talked about this (and have been talking for years), and unfortunately they are few and far between. There was a good show on Counterspin yesterday, relating to these topics. Cigar Ros mashup: Yes! I needed that. I know Sigur Ros is too often schmaltzy boring snooze-material, and that helps make it sooooo obvious.

get yr r0x0rz off

Gastro pubs down south is teh r0x0rz. You must have been smoking r0x. THIS is a gastropub. Real gastro, real pub.

chicken brick through the window

Hmm yes, when I said gastropub I couldn't think of the description for what 'upmarket bar (chains)' produce. The sort of thing that isn't proper pub food and not too restauranty. Anyway in Leeds you can taste the centralised catering - best avoided in favour of a liquid meal or home cooking (or a curry).

Chicken in a basket

No doubt to prepare them for the half-baked world of 'gastropub' food. Gastro pubs down south is teh r0x0rz.

false choice

show me the kind of diversity that you see in America's Cabinet As in they all work for different oil companies! - I don't think I'm ever going to like more than three tracks off 'I care because you do'. It's been about ten yers now and there's been no give or take on any side. There is something about it's busy high pitched doodliness that just doesn't appeal to me. - better food? Some schools have turned to a contractor, Cygnet catering, to bring meals in from Northamptonshire which are then "regenerated" or reheated in a mass kitchen unit before being redistributed locally. No doubt to prepare them for the half-baked world of 'gastropub' food. Of course ont' continent you can get up to 2 hours lunch break at school to go home and have a family meal and a decent playtime after.

Amsterdam

By the way, I have just moved to Amsterdam to study graphic design here: Gerrit Rietveld Academie

Cigar Ros vs. Sealion Dion

Our friend Kristian Vester aka. Goodiepal does this fantastic mashup: http://www.unbearablerecordings.co.uk/html/CigarRos.html

White on Rice

White on Rice Rice, the highest ranking black official in the Bush administration, defended national race relations saying the United States "is about 100 percent ahead of anyplace else in the world in issues of race."

"And I say that absolutely, fundamentally," she said. "You go to any other meeting around the world and show me the kind of diversity that you see in America's Cabinet, in America's foreign service, in America's business community, in America's journalistic community.

"Show me that kind of diversity anyplace else in the world, and I'm prepared to be lectured about race."

Rice -- who was born in Birmingham, Alabama, and spent most of her childhood there -- said the confluence of race and poverty is a vestige of American history.

"It's a vestige of particularly the Old South in this case," she said.

"We will be making a mistake if we let people jump to the conclusion that the United States has therefore not dealt with issues of race, particularly if you look at how issues of race are dealt with in most of the world."

Rice also said she believes the Hurricane Katrina disaster provides an opportunity for Americans to launch a comprehensive attack on poverty. [...]

http://edition.cnn.com/2005/POLITICS/09/13/katrina.rice/index.html

Is it me, or is this an example of seamless, flawless and perfect doublespeak?

From the outside, just from say, watching something innofensive like 'Oprah' the usa appears to be one of the most racist countries on earth.

That woman uses the term 'bi-racial' constantly, as if she is describing somehting real. Everywhere has its language and perception problems, but in this case, the us is right up there with South Africa and Brazil in its obsession with describing and categorizing people like animals. What makes it one million times more offensive is when one of their citizens says that this behaviour is right, or when they use these terminologies without caveat, like Oprah constantly does.

That is why you can have the absurd difference between the entries for Europe and Africa at Wikipedia. Its dominated by americans, and so one entry talks about 'race' and the other doesn't. When someone tried to put in a section about the European 'races' (categorizing europeans in the way that animals are sorted) it was cut out for being racist. Why is it offensive tothe people maintaining the Europe page to categorize humans from one continent but not another?

The first thing you ask would be, "well, what do they look like?".

Uh oh....

Google BlogSearch

Yet ANOTHER new google service. They just keep 'em coming. "Your neighbour's trash search" is not far around the corner. This one could have interesting possibilities. It certainly makes blogs like ours far more visible. A blog browse feature would be nice - some kind of way to tick off the search to pay more attention to whatever tags you are more interested in (ie more of a browse n' read function instead of a searching for a specific thing). Pretty sweet though.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Score one for the good guys?

Police blotter: Cell phone tracking rejected

"Police blotter" is a weekly report on the intersection of technology and the law. This episode: Feds' location-tracking rebuffed.

What: In the first case of its kind, a federal judge chastises the U.S. Department of Justice for trying to constantly track a cell phone user's location without providing any proof of criminal behavior.

When: Decided Aug. 25 by U.S. Magistrate Judge James Orenstein in Central Islip, N.Y.

Outcome: Justice Department's Patriot Act surveillance request was denied.

What happened: Burton T. Ryan Jr., an assistant U.S. attorney, sought a court order that would permit federal agents to track a suspect though his cell phone--but he couldn't offer any evidence of actual criminal activity.

Ryan asked Orenstein to sign an order requiring the unnamed cellular provider to divulge the information, which would reveal the suspect's location whenever his cell phone was in use. (Cell phones must provide this information because of potential 911 emergencies, the Federal Communications Commission has ruled.)

Such location-tracking was permitted under the 2001 Patriot Act, which amended the definition of a "pen register," Ryan argued. A pen register records phone numbers that are dialed.

Orenstein disagreed. Location information amounts to a wiretap, he said, and therefore requires prosecutors to show "probable cause"--that is, at least some evidence of criminal behavior. Such an order "would effectively allow the installation of a tracking device without the showing of probable cause normally required for a warrant."

Citing congressional testimony by former FBI Director Louis Freeh, Orenstein rejected the request and told the Justice Department to appeal if it wanted further clarification. Freeh had assured Congress that "the authority for pen registers and trap and trace devices cannot be used to obtain tracking or location information."

Excerpt from Orenstein's opinion: "My research on this question has failed to reveal any federal case law directly on point. Moreover, it is my understanding based on anecdotal information that magistrate judges in other jurisdictions are being confronted with the same issue but have not yet achieved consensus on how to resolve it. If the government intends to continue seeking authority to obtain cell site location information in aid of its criminal investigations, I urge it to seek appropriate review of this order so that magistrate judges will have more authoritative guidance in determining whether controlling law permits such relief on the basis of the relaxed standard set forth (under federal law), or instead requires adherence to the more exacting standard of probable cause. [...]

http://news.com.com/2100-1030_3-5846037.html

Yes, sounds like a win for the good guys doesn't it? Or is it just the last sparks of the fire of freedom, as it burns out and not one person remains to put new logs on.

I KNOW!

We can throw all the surveillance logs on this fire!!!!!

Answers to questions

How would it be possible to opt out of having data read by private companies? In practice you will not be able to. What background checks would be made on businesses accessing data? The only background check will be if the company can pay or not. If it is to be used to vette people before they are hired, there can be no barrier to entry for any employer, save that of being able to pay. Even if there is a system to keep out some businesses, people will set up companies whose sole purpose is to check peoples NIR entry. Just like the many companies that exist to interface with Amazon.com where the ordinary punter cannot. How would businesses be prevented from storing NIR data, and how to prevent it leaving the UK? They cannot be prevented, and all it will take is one company to insert a PC between the system and card reader for a recording stationto be set up. You could even break into an office and do runs overnight so that the company that has accesss doesnt even know its been hijacked. Over years, a perfect copy of the entire database will be created in this way, should the project go ahead. This is a fact. Is there anyone in the Home Office with any common sense? No. But you know this! Rhetorical question?

looks like the silly season is over, or not, depending...

The Home Office said yesterday that businesses and public sector agency access to the national identity card database will be allowed on a graded basis, according to need. The idea is that so-called trivial checks on people's biometrics should not be allowed to overload the system. According to The FT, Katherine Courtney, the ID card programme director at the Home Office, said that the government wanted to build safeguards into the scheme to avoid "people attempting frivolously to use the system when there is not a business justification for that". A number of questions immediately spring to mind: How would it be possible to opt out of having data read by private companies? Would companies have direct access to NIR information, and would the records be limited secondary records or the main record filtered in real time? What background checks would be made on businesses accessing data? How would businesses be prevented from storing NIR data, and how to prevent it leaving the UK? Is there anyone in the Home Office with any common sense? Situations when a check would be justified included car rentals, for instance. A car hire firm would be able to access the database to confirm a potential customer's identity. At the time of writing, the Home Office has not been able to clarify exactly what information the firm would have access to in this scenario. Why is this necessary? If the person is caught driving with a false driving license then it is not the car hire firm's liability. The firm will have insurance to cover cars being stolen/damaged whilst rented out. A credit card transaction can already be disallowed if a false invoice address is given when asked for. And thusly for other transactions. Employers would be able to use the database to check on candidates, and the database could be used to run much faster background checks on those applying to work as teachers, the officials said. Again completely unecessary employers can already contact the police to confirm if someone has a criminal record this could be made 'much faster' by upgrading police databases and this does not require NIR integration. Courtney said it was unlikely that the ID card would be demanded for everyday shopping transactions, but went on to outline plans for the ID card to be linked into the next generation of chip and pin credit and debit card readers. Unlikely? completely unrequired, the 'integration' with credit/debit card readers could only be devised by a complete and utter mentalist if the intention of 'reducing Identity Theft' is in any way a (deluded) intention of the ID system. She argued that integrating the cards into business and public life would provide incentives for people to register for the card, even before they become compulsory. In effect, life without a card will become increasingly inconvienient, so most people will register for one, just to speed things up. Ah the lie exposed - there is going to be immense coercion of the public to force the arbitrary 80% take up rate onto the public so it becomes compulsory to register on the NIR database as soon as possible. The Register