Filed: Politics

An Apple a Day

This is one of those that falls into the category of things that I should have known, but didn’t. If you did, apologies in advance for wasting your time. And please enjoy your smugness ;)

For over 20 years I’ve been surrounded by Macs, from the Mac Plus I first bought for work in 1986 (£2,500 for the PC and £5,000 for the laser printer and last seen as an aquarium) to the super-silent, super-fast Mac Pro which arrived last week. Sheer poetry. Read more ›››

Inept Opposition

I find it incredible that such an apparently well-researched report could be so inaccurate here in Manchester at a hospital that has neither A+E or maternity services. It may have done so once in the dim and distant, but not for the last 20 years to my knowledge. But it’s not just here another seven of the list of 29 who are giving a bewildered shake of the head, saying “Not us, Dave.”

In fact one of Dave’s own MPs has had to apologise to his local hospital over this almighty cock-up. Read more ›››

Unintended Consequences

We know that when the state intervenes to improve our behaviour that there are consequences no-one had thought of. Take the smoking ban — the BBC made dire predictions that it would possibly increase the number of people who smoke; adversely affect global warming through the installation of patio heaters to comfort puffing pub-goers (which has come to pass); inflict more passive smoking on children as more parents smoked at home; and other unthought of downsides. Read more ›››

Summer Time a Liberal Plot

I heard this on a recent edition of the News Quiz and thought it must be one of those urban legends, but apparently not: You may have noticed that March of this year was particularly hot. As a matter of fact, I understand that it was the hottest March since the beginning of the last century. All of the trees were fully leafed out and legions of bugs and snakes were crawling around during a time in Arkansas when, on a normal year, we might see a snowflake or two. Read more ›››

Uncandescent

When TB and the EU announced that the light bulb as we know it was to be outlawed over the next four years I fully expected there to be a run on them at our local Morrison’s in the same way that the folk in the 50s and 60s would stockpile beans, cans of soup and bread if there were the threat of a transport strike, Soviet nuclear attack or, latterly, a long Bank Holiday weekend. Read more ›››

Be Careful What You Wish For

Because it might come true. Or at least not in the way you were expecting it to. Genies and other magical beings have a habit of granting wishes that can be troublesome. My favourite is the one about the woman who has three, on the proviso that that whatever she asks for, her husband will get double.

She asks for £10 million and the genie warns her that hubby will get £20 million. Then she asks that she irresistible to the world’s sexist men and the genie tells her that hubby will be doubly so. Her last wish is that she suffers a mild heart attack. Read more ›››

If Democracy Changed Anything…

I finally got round to having a look at Tony Blair’s petition page today. It isn’t clear what impact these will have on government policy. There is certainly no suggestion that if enough people sign then change of direction will follow, but then petitions are notoriously ineffectual. Just look at the Chartists FFS — a petition that put the fear of God into the establishment, so nuch so, they were trodden into the sediment of history. Read more ›››

Think The Unthinkable

All in all the Parrot family did okay for Christmas prezzies. I won’t bore you with the details other than to say that one of my favourites is “Is it just me or is everything shit?“, the encyclopedia of modern life by Steve Love and Alan McArthur. It’s a grumpy old git of a read, but funny, entertaining and a jaundiced view of the world that strangely resonates.

I’m only up to the letter C category, but one of my favourites is number six on the list of “The 10 definitive Reasons Why Tony Blair Is Fucking Rubbish”: Read more ›››