01-15 March, 2004

This entry was posted on
Monday, March 1st, 2004
at
9:34 am and is filed
under Uncategorized.

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Date
20040301
Page 3 – Words of Wisdom
Time
09:34
Actually, I’m amazed they took this long…

A few papers (here’s one) noted over the weekend that a whispering campaign has been deployed to taint Clare Short’s quite serious charges by suggesting that perhaps she’s gone a bit barmy.

The Scum, by digging up this bucket of cold sick with a quick phone-poll of MPs, feel bold enough to come right out and say it. Today’s Page 3 editorial is a whopper: Today Anna (22, from London) is delighted that Clare Short’s barmy bid to ban Page 3 girls is doomed to fail. Anna said: “This shows what nonsense she has been spouting. Hopefully this poll will make her shut up at last. She should keep her prudish beliefs to herself and leave us alone.”

Yes folks, you can safely ignore the crazy lady who wants to take your tits away and is telling such nasty stories about our PM.

The super soaraway Scum reveals the following on the facing page: RANTING Clare Short has been accused of treachery by Britain’s top civil servant…. Last night, one critic even suggested she needed a PSYCHIATRIST while others labelled her “bitter” and said her credibility was zero.

Labour MP George Foulkes also backed this claim that it was her credibility “at rock bottom” and not Tony Blair’s, but the final flourish (and a Cheek of the Week award) goes to Alastair ‘fuck Gilligan‘ Campbell: “It’s very sad that people who have been in positions of authority now behave in a way that just reveals a bitterness that is very, very deep.”

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Date
20040301
It’s Law! And Somebody’s Telling Porkies!
Time
10:19
The Independent 28 Feb – Clare Short: Was Attorney General leant on to sanction war?: The suggestion, however, that the Attorney General’s opinion may have been manipulated is very serious. There is no doubt that the way in which a truncated opinion authorising war appeared at the very last minute was very odd.

Indeed.

In fact, I’m curious to know why Lord Goldsmith needed two sides of A4 in which to say “Oh, go on then…”

The Independent 29 Feb – Revealed: Attorney General changed his advice on legality of Iraq war: Lord Goldsmith’s full opinion on the legality of the war has never been made public. The desire to keep it secret is believed to be the main reason why the Official Secrets Act prosecution of Katharine Gun, a 29-year-old former employee of GCHQ, the Government’s monitoring centre, was abandoned at the Old Bailey last week. The case could have revealed that in November 2002 the Attorney General believed Britain required specific authorisation for war from the UN Security Council, but that he later changed his stance.

And for what reason? Could he have been subconsciously influenced?

The Guardian 29 Feb – Beware smoking Guns: The reason why many think that Tony Blair remains one leak away from resignation lies in what is known and supposed about the legal advice he received just before the war. Gun’s lawyers were determined to get their hands on it.

And it may very well come to light…

Torygraph 1 Mar – Major calls on Blair to publish Goldsmith’s war advice: John Major added to growing pressure on Tony Blair to publish the Attorney General’s full advice on the legality of the Iraq war yesterday after a respected Labour peer said Washington ordered it to be made more hawkish shortly before the conflict began.

UPDATE – Well, perhaps not

Will the magic of spin & secrecy save Teflon Tony again? I keep turning on the television and expecting to see live footage of 10 Downing St…

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Date
20040301
It’s War! And Totally Justified At That!
Time
10:21
The Guardian – Report Clears Australia on Iraq Claims. Basically, everyone’s sticking to the same story. It wasn’t cherry-picked or influenced intelligence, it was bad intelligence. And there’ll be an inquiry to establish that as soon as possible.

A clear gap has been shown between what was known and what was presented to the public but this was part of a “more moderate” push for war than used by the US or the UK, so that’s OK….

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Date
20040301
Video
Time
10:41
Life moves pretty fast…

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Date
20040301
Church & State
Time
10:42
Washington Post – Bush Ejects Two From Bioethics Council: President Bush (has) dismissed two members of his handpicked Council on Bioethics — a scientist and a moral philosopher who had been among the more outspoken advocates for research on human embryo cells. In their places he appointed three new members, including a doctor who has called for more religion in public life, a political scientist who has spoken out precisely against the research that the dismissed members supported, and another who has written about the immorality of abortion and the “threats of biotechnology.”

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Date
20040301
Christianity Watch
Time
10:45
Shrimp, crab, lobster, clams and mussels are an abomination before the Lord! This is a lovely piece of work. Now all they need to do is find a picture of Dubya tucking into some heathen grub and they’ll be set.

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Date
20040301
Guantanamo Bay
Time
10:49
Freed inmate claims ‘cruel and unusual’ punishment. Patriotic US music including Bruce Springsteen’s Born in The USA blared day and night, according to the former inmate.

(And before you start, Born in the USA can be described as patriotic, just not very nationalistic.)

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Date
20040301
Tony Blair
Time
11:01
Some good stuff over at The UK Today lately; including a post about Cherie’s clearly bollocks claim that Tony once did it tough on the streets.

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Date
20040301
Google – The Adsense Trial
Time
11:14
The Ultimate Insult appears to have lost its Adwords account because of what was said in this one comments thread, where – in response to the news that Scott had lost his job – several folks used the ‘f’ word.

I’m sure you’ll pardon me for saying that Google is being a bit fucking precious. You will, but Google won’t. In fact, I’m willing to bet they’ll be along sometime soon to withdraw the whopping great $21.50 I’ve earned so far whoring out my site.

FFS, isn’t there someone at Google in charge of not stuffing up the brand before the float? Things seem to be going from bad to worse at the mo. Even their central database is screwed beyond all recognition.

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Date
20040301
The Happy Poster Project
Time
11:22
Lots of submissions to get through. I’ll update the poster selection and bring you a report on the Guildford hit sometime this afternoon.

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Date
20040301
The Political Weblog Movement
Time
12:26
Dean team described as ‘dysfunctional political family’. And a money pit.

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Date
20040301
The Happy Poster Project – Guildford
Time
17:13
The Saturday mission was called on account of sickness. Even the rescheduled mission on Sunday was left to me on my lonesome, but in the end I was glad I didn’t take the kids… the experience was pretty soul-destroying.

I’m not sure what things are like in your neck of the woods, but in my local High St, there are very few local interests. In fact, with the exception of some boutiques (who have a big rod up their butt about minimalism anyway) just about every store belongs to a larger chain and the manager needs to check with head office before wiping his or her arse. (Or, they can just say ‘no’ to everything, which saves everybody a lot of time.)

What I soon found out was that – in Guildford High Street – giant messages like 50% OFF, EASY CREDIT NOW and YOU BUY PHONE NOW are fine, but there simply isn’t room for just a few millimetres of happiness. Full-stop. No exceptions. I don’t care what you’re not advertising.

(Folks, do keep this in mind next time your favourite chain store runs a campaign pretending to be your friend or a champion of the community. They’re a bunch of lying, uncaring c**ts.)

About halfway down the High St, I gave up and just started half-heartedly handing them out for display in the staff room. However, I soon realised that I was cheating myself (and others) and decided to hit North St with a renewed sense of porpoise.

It didn’t last.

The Tell It Like It Is Award for this mission goes to the young chap in Game’s North St store who pretty much set the tone for this leg of the trip by saying flat out: “Get real, mate. It costs sixteen grand to put a poster in that window!”

Actually, he seemed strangely proud of this, as if his ability to reject me on the basis on my inability to pay 16K somehow distanced him from the five-and-change he gets paid each hour to look at the inside of this same window.

Ho-hum.

The folks in the bargain Homeware UK store just down the road were much nicer, and came good with the first full window display of the day. I was so chuffed, I stopped to buy some batteries.

Onwards and upwards, I continued the climb up North street and was rejected by every storekeeper, with the exception of one brave soul in MVC who risked his manager’s displeasure by decorating an interior pillar.

A greater degree of success was to be had off the main drag, but it was Sunday, so not all of these stores were open and even those storekeepers I did find that were able to operate with some autonomy were suspicious that their off-broadway window-space was about to be hijacked by some clever-clogs marketing campaign. I can’t really say that I blame them, with increasingly cheeky advertisers and a going rate of about sixteen grand a window on the main drag.

Pizza GoGo in Chapel St was the last notable success. They were very happy to see a friendly face and more than happy to host a poster, so I have no problems at all pointing out that they have a much wider delivery area than you would expect and await calls from hungry peeps in outlying villages. Their number is 599 999. (I haven’t tasted their pizzas, but they’ve got friendly staff and happy windows, and that has to count for something.)

I’m hitting a smaller town next time around, and hoping for a greater degree of success.

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Date
20040302
Established Media
Time
08:58
Paul Carr – Why Drudge is bad for online journalism: “…we need to be much, much more proactive in hunting down genuine scoops, even if that means tearing ourselves away from Google for two hours to hit the phones and pound the streets. Only then can we hope to undo the Drudge effect and allow online journalists to take their rightful place on the media landscape, competing head to head with Fleet Street’s finest.”

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Date
20040302
Inneresting
Time
09:04
Why do the Oscars pretend to run overtime every year?

Oh, and what does ‘kumbayah’ mean?

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Date
20040302
The War on…..
Time
09:07
I think there’s a number of valid comparisons between the rise of fascism in the 1930s and what going on in America right now, but this hijacking of Anne Frank’s diary as part of a brainwashing curriculum in North Korea disgusts me.

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Date
20040302
Does What It Says On The Tin
Time
09:22
www.downingstreetsays.org

UPDATE – Now the subject of a BBC article. Cheers to Andrew for the heads-up.

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Date
20040302
Literature
Time
09:28
Summarise a novel in 25 words or less. I swear some of these have been ripped off from a similar exercise summarising movies.

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Date
20040302
Art
Time
09:30
Whittle something nifty and sell it via an Art-o-mat. (Latter link via Partial To The Bean.)

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Date
20040302
Riding High on Blogdex
Time
09:35
Oscars blah-blah, winners blah-blah. Mel is the devil, no, liberals are just being intolerant… no, it is true, Mel is the devil!

Ah, here we go…

A little girl feels no pain and – remarkably – the world feels no fear.

Monsters lurk in our oceans and are marching on Norway, but we’re more excited about past puddles on Mars.

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Date
20040302
The Interwebnet
Time
09:46
Pew Internet Project releases report on content creation.

The summary of findings has bloggers as 2% of the online population, which corresponds with this release by ClickZ. You can see comments and number crunching here and here.

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Date
20040302
Consume!
Time
09:59
Coca Cola admits to selling bottled tap water. Beats ground water.

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Date
20040302
It’s War! And Things Is Getting Ridiculous!
Time
10:02
The Guardian – Howard ends Tory support for Butler inquiry.

I don’t need to say it; Charles Kennedy says it for me: “There is no question that the Conservatives increasingly would like people to forget their principle-cheerleader supporting role in the build-up to the Gulf War with Iraq.”

(Cheers to Mark for the heads-up on this quote.)

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Date
20040302
11/9 (please note correct formatting of date)
Time
10:06
New York Times – Sorry, Right Number: Bush officials act as though they own 9/11, even while refusing to own up to any 9/11 mistakes. Because of 9/11, they think they can suspend the Constitution, blow off investigators, attack nations pre-emptively, and keep Americans afraid by waging a war against terrorism that can never be won.

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Date
20040302
Bunch of Stuff
Time
10:08
Share some SFW pornography with your imaginary girlfriend.

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Date
20040302
Tolerance
Time
10:14
12 Reasons Same-Sex Marriage will Ruin Society

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Date
20040302
Christianity Watch
Time
10:17
Some sod attacked a defenceless (if 60ft high) apparition of the Virgin Mary Oh well. No matter. There’s plenty more where that came from. I even hear that they grow on trees.

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Date
20040302
Spaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaace
Time
10:23
The Guardian – Mission to Planet Rumsfeld: If Bush wins a second term, the weaponisation of space is expected to get under way, finally realising Ronald Reagan’s “Star Wars” dream. The 1967 Outer Space Treaty, which outlaws the use of weapons in orbit, will go the same way as the anti-ballistic missile treaty – another strand of global governance unravelled in pursuit of the war on terror.

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Date
20040302
The Happy Poster Project
Time
10:27
The Happy Poster Project has so far reached 14,463 people.

It’s 2nd in Yahoo for ‘happy poster’, 1st in Google for same and 4th for ‘happy posters‘. Biggest referrer (by far) is the latest B3ta newsletter.

Reports are coming in of a lot of office/window action, but we need more people to bite the bullet and hit the High Street. I’m also getting some email from folks (some nice, some not) suggesting:

a) that I’m being a tad naive

b) that maybe I should try to include a political message

Best submission to date (it still cracks me up) is this late entry by Robbie.

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Date
20040302
The Bush Administration
Time
11:48
New York Times – Administration Dismisses Rumours That U.S. Kidnapped Aristide: The Bush administration ridiculed any suggestion today that former President Jean-Bertrand Aristide of Haiti had been spirited out of his country under force by the United States military.

Under force? Never! Under duress? Well…

This report from Palm Beach Post contains many a giggle. Here are two. Follow the links if you don’t see the joke.

“He was not kidnapped. We did not force him onto the airplane,” Powell told reporters at the State Department. “He went onto the airplane willingly. And that’s the truth.

Later, Powell’s assistant secretary for Western Hemisphere affairs, Roger Noriega, went further, telling the NBC television network that Aristide “has proven to be erratic and unreliable.”

This mirror of an article by Jeffrey Sachs in the Financial Times provides an entirely different view to the one being fed to us via most news outlets.

So are we looking at necessary intervention, or the closing chapters of clandestine manipulation?

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Date
20040302
Useful
Time
12:15
…and to shake your booty means to wiggle one’s butt.

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Date
20040302
Privacy
Time
12:50
RFID Tags in New US Notes Explode When You Try to Microwave Them

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Date
20040302
Michael Carroll
Time
13:51
With any luck, Michael is on time, and right now waiting outside the right court.

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Date
20040303
Virus Alerts
Time
08:47
Watch out; there’s virii about!

Two variants of NetSky – Netsky.D and NetSky.E – caused some concern yesterday, but this morning I also spotted some rather nifty social engineering from a new virus/variant.

You can read the full specifications for this virus – Beagle.J – and view variations of email content in this alert page but here, by way of example, is pretty much what you can expect to see….

I spotted these emails as bullshit straight away because I’m the ruler of my own domain (and subsequently everything@ when it comes to emails) but I’m sure this little trick will prompt many web users to open such attachments without a moment’s thought.

(Note – ‘bloggerheads’ has been change to ‘bloogerheads’ so I can show you the whole email without having to dick around with spamblocks.)

—– Original Message —–

From: administration@bloogerheads.com

To: manic@bloogerheads.com

Sent: Wednesday, March 03, 2004 7:20 AM

Subject: E-mail account disabling warning.

–> Dear user of Bloogerheads.com gateway e-mail server,

–>

–> We warn you about some attacks on your e-mail account. Your computer may

–> contain viruses, in order to keep your computer and e-mail account safe,

–> please, follow the instructions.

–>

–> For details see the attached file.

–>

–> In order to read the attach you have to use the following password: 74502.

–>

–> Sincerely,

–> The Bloogerheads.com team http://www.bloogerheads.com

–>

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Date
20040303
Riding High on Blogdex
Time
08:50
Topping the chart this morning are those exploding banknotes from yesterday and a bunch of other familiar stuff. Kind of new is this CNN report on the blogging figures released by the Pew Internet and American Life Project and climbing fast is The Passion of the Christ: Blooper Reel .

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Date
20040303
It’s War! And Totally Justified At That!
Time
10:00
As Tessa Jowell announces there won’t be a ban on junk food advertising in a speech to the advertisers who make shedloads of money from this practice, she asks us simple voters not to look for easy blame or a quick and easy fix, and instead urges us to look at the complexities of the overall problem.

Meanwhile, here are Tony Blair’s thoughts on the recent atrocities in Iraq. As it turns out, this is a simple case of good vs. eeeevil: “….if there was any clearer struggle between good and evil, it is between those on the one hand who want to build Iraq as a decent country in which people from whatever religious quarter can live together in freedom and in peace on the one hand, and on the other those who would destroy that and replace that by religious hatred.”

Me, I’m going to dare to look at the complexities of the overall problem.

For instance, where does Tony Blair sit with regards to the racial/economic hatred being touted by tabloids? (Including his primary mouthpiece The Sun, and the Express, newspaper of Labour party donor and pornographer-about-town Richard Desmond.)

And what of the recent behaviour of his allies (read: masters) in Iraq?

Couldn’t the Bush-backed call for a ban on gay marriage be described as a campaign of religious hatred?

Doesn’t casting a right-wing Christian view as law restrict ‘people from whatever religious quarter’ living together ‘in freedom and in peace’…?

I also can’t help but wonder – given the role Blair played to facilitate events – if he or Bush feel any responsibility for these deaths?

From George W. Bush’s address to the nation, Sep 8 2003: “Two years ago, I told the Congress and the country that the war on terror would be a lengthy war, a different kind of war, fought on many fronts in many places. Iraq is now the central front. Enemies of freedom are making a desperate stand there — and there they must be defeated. This will take time, and require sacrifice. Yet we will do what is necessary, we will spend what is necessary, to achieve this essential victory in the war on terror, to promote freedom, and to make our own nation more secure.”

From George W. Bush’s speech to the Heritage Foundation, Nov 11, 2003: Our men and women are fighting terrorist enemies – thousands of miles away, in the heart and center of their power – so that we do not face those enemies in the heart of America.

Now I don’t know about you, but it seems to me that Bush is claiming that making Iraq a terror magnet was his intention all along and that this is a good thing in that it protects the folks at home. So much for the latest justification for the illegal war – that this was all done out of concern for the Iraqis.



We now take you live to Downing St for a report from Brian Gumby…

Bush smart man. Blair help him smart too. Blair good man. Sleep rough once. Terror attack happen in Iraq mean terror attack not happen in US. Or UK. But terror attack in UK inevitable. So we lose freedom. My brain hurts! No matter. Is good thinking. Is also news good for Iraqi peeps who we went in to make life betterer for. We build country Iraq as place of peace and freedom, but first we use country as battleground with ragheads, OK…?

(Argh! Me have rag on head! Must fight war on terror! Hit self on head! *thud*)

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Date
20040303
Rupert ‘The Evil One’ Murdoch
Time
10:49
Remember when The Scum could back its harassment campaigns with actual wit? Yesterday they had veteran Sun ‘journalist’ Tim Spanton chase Clare Short around town in a bug suit, shouting such witticisms as “Now you know what it’s like to really be bugged!”

Ha.

Ha. Ha.

No, please stop. I fear my sides shall split.

This Slate piece has a few words on the tabloid take on the affair, so I’ll leave the rest to them.

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Date
20040303
Bush: AWOL
Time
10:51
So that’s it, then? We’ll never know? Look forward to this being presented as ‘I answered that question….’

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Date
20040303
Updates
Time
11:01
The SWT campaign page is coming together. It’s got a nice grass-roots angle.

There are also some more Happy Posters to add.

Both will have to wait for a bit… perhaps some new stuff will come your way this afternoon. Work first. Google’s bounced back with some significant (and quite positive) changes to its database and I have to track a bunch of changes, write reports, and like that…

Here’s two bits to keep you busy:

Did Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger violate Federal Election Law?

The pesky matter of the legality of the war on Iraq may crop up in another court case, this one involving protesters charged with criminal damage at RAF Fairford in Gloucestershire on the eve of war.

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Date
20040303
Normal People
Time
15:22
Faces, faces, so many faces! This test will probably end up getting you on a mailing list so venture forth, but do operate with caution. There’s some strange faces to see, some fun to be had and some learnin’ to be done.

As it turns out, about 10% of men share my taste in women. I have an eye for noses. Oh, and I dig Ecto-Mesomorphs.

Meet 4004-ff_03. She’s my kind of woman. Apparently.

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Date
20040304
Viral Marketing
Time
09:45
I subscribe to a few Chinwag lists, one of which is Viralmonitor, an alert list for those wishing to release or keep tabs on the latest online viral marketing campaigns.

Normally less than a quarter of what gets released on this list gets blogged here. Today; a special treat… I’m going to show you everything from the last two days so you know why that’s the case.

‘Stoned Criminals’ – This is too perfect to be anything but staged, but it does raise a smirk.

The King Size Creme Egg Campaign – This hurts my brain. A marketing campaign for a Cadbury product that ‘is not affiliated with Cadbury in any way’…? It’s a decidedly amateur look, but this site has been produced by professionals. And, to their credit, they have been smart enough to hide the WHOIS data. But are they trying to win business, or disguise what is essentially a combination of market research and promotion for a new product? You tell me…

‘Tango por 2′ Trailer – The only thing viral about this is the ‘send to a friend and win’ feature. There’s no compelling content, humour or hook at all. It’s almost as if they started with the assumption that viral=flash and went no further. You’d want to offer something pretty significant for me to want to burden my friends with this empty and pointless bit of flash, but what’s the prize? A free beginner’s tango lesson! I’ll try to contain my excitement…

Here’s a lesson for beginners while we’re on the subject of ‘send to a friend and win’ features. In the age of weblogs, you’re a bloody fool if you don’t also include a ‘link to this and win’ feature.

Finally, I’m going to leave you with this NSFW effort, promoting The Doghouse. The lesson (I thinks) is that if you forget things like anniversaries and birthdays, you will end up a lonely old tosser.

My lesson is that you need to combine your viral mechanisms with link generation that’s of benefit to the core site. Unless of course it’s something naughty like this, in which case the less peeps who know about the connection the better.

(Oh, while we’re on the subject of NSFW material and lessons, take a look at this site, promoting ‘exclusive companionship in any major city or holiday resort’. Then take a look at this B3tan thread, where myself and others praise the virtues of the site’s best feature; JPEGs that show you a picture of each escort and exactly what she will or won’t do for dollars. An indispensable aid to the decision-making process. The tart-carders could learn a thing or two from this operator (even if they know sweet bugger all about basic site security).)

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Date
20040304
Passing On? Not Bloody Likely!
Time
09:54
And they’re OK folks!

My favourite boots are back on my feet and I can do the happy dance once more. Check out that grip, ladies and gentlemen.

The adhesive used in the resoling process appears to be of the kind variety. I’ve been booted up for well over two hours now and not a single tingle has been felt.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040304
Riding High on Blogdex
Time
10:50
Topping the chart is a gadget blog that should tick over nicely.

Also on the loose; Kerry’s the man, and he’s on the lookout for a VP. Rove’s team know who they’re up against, so campaigning has begun in earnest.

The cartooning world also has a treat or two for us. Here’s a searchable database of every Calvin & Hobbes strip ever published. Looking for transmogrifiers? No problem. Bless you, Martijn Reemst.

And finally…

(sings)

The Singhsons…. plong, plong-plong-plong… (Hey, I recognise that cow!)

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040304
Only Interesting to Bloggers
Time
11:03
Wow. Woo! Wibble?

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040304
It’s War! And Somebody’s Telling Porkies!
Time
11:06
FFF – Bush’s War Story Is All Wrong: President Bush likes to say that if his war critics had their way, Saddam Hussein would still be in power. But if we are to believe the president, the same thing can be said about him: if he had had his way, Saddam Hussein would still be in power. (Cheers, Scaryduck.)

Oh, and as was pointed out yesterday, he claims he’s doing this for the benefit of the Iraqi people, but he has deliberately made Iraq the central front for the war on terror in order to protect the folks at home. Here, Back to Iraq reports on a surge in anti-Americanism across Iraq following the attacks on Shi’ites.

UPDATE – Ben (who has been happy-spotting in Bath and saying nice things to poster-hosting shopkeepers) wishes to remind us of Bush’s “Fuck Saddam. We’re taking him out.” moment from March, 2002. You’ll see a CNN link there. This incident was also referred to by Time magazine. There’s also an article at Counterpunch that claims this proves he’s a drunken idiot, but this is clearly absurd. We have no proof he was drunk at the time.

The Guardian – Top BBC resignations astonished Hutton: The law lord was convinced he had produced a “finding of fact” which was even-handed in criticising both the BBC’s “unfounded” reporting and weaknesses in editorial control and the Ministry of Defence’s failure to provide “duty of care” towards Dr Kelly.

1. I’m sorry, but the word ‘subconscious‘ still sticks in my craw.

2. Of course, it helped that The Scum helpfully set the tone early on with their leak of the report (on another leak) that wasn’t supposed be leaked.

3. There was supposed to be an ‘urgent investigation’ into that leak. How’s that going?

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040304
Rupert ‘The Evil One’ Murdoch
Time
11:31
Today’s Page 3 editorial is only mildly amusing. Zoe (22, from London) is impressed with Prince Harry’s work to help AIDS victims in Africa (by turning up to have his picture taken and planting a peach tree in an orphanage). Zoe said: “Harry is using his position to promote a really worthy cause. It should make us all feel proud of him. And his trip goes to show us just how much he takes after he mum.”

By contrast, Richard Littlejohn is all class today. Helping the ‘kill Clare Short’ campaign along on behalf of Tony Blair (here The Scum reports on a ‘deluge’ of MPS wanting to boot her out in response to her ‘ranting’), Britain’s Queen of Denial has this to say: All you need to know about this self-serving sneak is that she gave up her own son for adoption because a baby got in the way of her ambitions, even though she subsequently married the father… How did Blair ever expect loyalty from a woman who was callously incapable of giving her loyalty to her own son?

Jane Moore keeps up this fresh attack with the following: Clare Short is the worst of the lot. Politically ambitious, she gave her son up for adoption and devoted herself to Labour, eventually securing herself a trusted place in the Cabinet. Outspoken from the start, we bore a grudging respect for her principled stance. Then, in a triumph of political ambition over principles, she voted in favour of the Iraq war. Her political colleagues have never forgiven her for such blatant double standards and, judging by her unhinged behaviour in the past fortnight, she’s never forgiven herself either.

It’s a classic case. Woman betrays child, country; goes a bit bonkers.

I have two words for this outright character assassination:

Beneath. Contempt.

And you can’t pretend it’s a tabloid and therefore doesn’t matter… not when this attack is being engineered by the new ‘non-spin’ Downing St. What you’re seeing in action here is not the behaviour of Murdoch or Wade, but the wishes of Tony Blair. He daren’t make Short a martyr, so he has to make her a pariah.

UPDATE – Oh, the latest Sun Reader Panel survey seems to suggest that the site is in for a bit for trim… starting with Bizarre.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040304
Christianity Watch
Time
11:37
MSNBC reports that John Debney, who composed the music for The Passion of the Christ, did battle with Satan while writing the score. Oh, and CNN reports that Passion is getting too much coverage. Best ignore that last link, then.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040304
Michael Carroll
Time
11:40
Heh. Check out the bling-bling on Michael. Spend it, baby!

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040304
Rupert ‘The Evil One’ Murdoch
Time
11:50
Rupert Murdoch prepares to decide who will be the next leader of this country. Oh, but it’s all very low-key. Not a big deal. Your vote still counts. Yes, of couse we’ll still be driving policy, don’t be ridiculous…

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040304
The Happy Poster Project
Time
11:53
The Happy Poster Project has been blogged by the BBC. Twice.

This image submitted yesterday by Funny Car still makes me smile. I hope the caption does it justice.

I’m still trying to decide on my next Happy Poster mission, but Princess Erin The Mighty has advised me of her plan to distribute some A4 happiness on her upcoming trip to Hong Kong and Taiwan. I can’t wait to see pictures.

UPDATE – South Wales is also covered. Perhaps I should start a map….

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040304
South West Trains
Time
12:05
The TOC Class Action Campaign begins here. Webmasters in a position to take on Thameslink, Virgin, Arriva, etc. etc. should get in touch now.

I suppose it would also help to have a lawyer look over our proposed information collection process. If you wear a silly wig to work, we could do with a quick inspection. Cheers.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040304
The Political Weblog Movement
Time
12:11
Welcome, David Boothroyd, Labour Councillor for the Westbourne Ward of Westminster City Council.

UPDATE – David was swung over to weblogs by the information presented at the meeting that SWT trashed on the 24th of Feb, so I guess we managed to do some good after all…

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040304
Compare
Time
13:49
Here is the news and here is the 100% fact!

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040304
11/9 (please note correct formatting of date)
Time
14:22
Bush: what did he know and when did he know it? If the flash show is a bit slow and heavy for you, check out this text timeline instead.

You know, thinking about Paul Carr’s comments in The Guardian, it occurs to me that an interview with the teacher in this class (Sandra Kay Daniels) would be jolly interesting thing… even if only to settle the ‘How long did Bush sit there and do nothing?’ question. I’d also be curious to know if his eyes were spinning clockwise or counter-clockwise.

UPDATE – Oh yes, this is totally appropriate.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040304
Spam
Time
15:27
Do you ever get any spam promoting child pornography? Yes? Then you may need this.

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Date
20040304
Bunch of Stuff
Time
15:42
Some quality finds at The Ultimate Insult (as usual). This collection of WB cartoon title cards will come in handy one day soon, I’m sure. In the meantime, I can just stare at the clouds and keep a sharp eye out for Jesus.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040305
The Interwebnet
Time
09:37
A Netizen’s Guide to Humour (Your Basic Primer on Satire, Mockery, and Name-Calling…)

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Date
20040305
Riding High on Blogdex
Time
09:40
I know you’ve seen the Bush/Cheney ads, but with all the fuss over 11/9 imagery, it also pays to run the URL by Technorati and see what others are saying.

(I’ll have a little something to say about this later today. Speaking in photoshop takes time.)

Also charting well is this article, which has recently been removed after some denials, some rephrasing, some ‘clarification‘…

Apparently, Republican congressman Tom Cole said or suggested that voting against Bush would be like supporting Adolf Hitler during World War II, and that, “If George Bush loses the election, Osama bin Laden wins the election.”

It’s all a bit messy right now, but if you want to dig in, then these posts at Atrios, Calpundit and Talking Points Memo are your best bet.

Remember; you are not allowed to compare George W. Bush to Hitler. That is a hate crime.

UPDATE – More on Bush’s 911 whoring.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040305
The War on Terror
Time
10:06
Tony Blair thinks we’re not taking the threat of terror seriously. But look how seamlessly his argument weaves into justification for the war on Iraq. (I don’t need to remind you that there was no link between Iraq and terrorism before Bush & Blair made a market for it, do I?)

Blair wasn’t as shameless and Bush about selling the phantom Saddam/911 connection, but he and his government have manipulated the terrorist threat for political gain and in doing so they have increased the likelihood of attack and made us more vulnerable, because a great many of us now have trouble believing anything that comes from Downing St.

(Perhaps it’s time for a new angle. May I suggest “The sky is falling!”…?)

UPDATE – The UK Today also has a thought or two. Go visit.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040305
Tolerance
Time
10:22
See some pictures from a massive anti-gay marriage rally. Includes a shot of a stall selling Adam & Eve NOT Adam & Steve t-shirts.

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Date
20040305
Inneresting
Time
10:25
Subway systems of the world, presented on the same scale. Who wants to submit the 3-pixel-wide image for Sydney?

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Date
20040305
Viral Marketing
Time
10:33
The (mostly) complete history of the Yeti/Penguin game. Includes variations on distance and theme, and details of servers melted along the way.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040305
Activism
Time
10:40
Beware: genius at work.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040305
Tony Blair
Time
10:46
The Guardian – Better Clare Short than the politics of yah-and-boo: At his monthly press conference (Blair) chides her for being “utterly irresponsible” in her allegations about British bugging of the UN, but adds that this is “entirely consistent” – leaving the impression that a mad Brummie virago had somehow wandered into the Labour cabinet when he was looking out of the window, and her years as international development secretary had nothing to do with him.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040305
South West Trains
Time
10:55
Launching the TOC Class Action Campaign on an existing page turned out to be a smart move.

It’s only a day old, and Google and Yahoo have already seen and indexed the new version.

This page, calling on victims of South West Trains to start online diaries, is 3rd in Google and Yahoo for the search query ‘south west trains’.

It’s also the top search result in both databases for ‘complain trains’ and ‘trains complain’. The zone is owned.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040305
Normal People
Time
11:26
The Eads family believe in George W. Bush.

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Date
20040305
Photoshopping
Time
13:14
And that’s all I have to say on the matter.

(A big version waits for you at B3ta.)

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040305
It’s Law! And Somebody’s Telling Porkies!
Time
13:30
Hans Blix: “I don’t buy the argument the war was legalised by the Iraqi violation of earlier resolutions.”

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040305
Flash Games
Time
13:51
Nigella Bites!

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040305
Scam Alert
Time
14:10
—– Original Message —–

From: admin@panamatrix.com

To: Undisclosed Recipients

Sent: Thursday, March 04, 2004 4:57 PM

Subject: Your credit card will be billed at $22.95

–>

–> Your credit card will be billed at $22.95 weekly and free 3 pack of child

–> porn CD is shipping to your billing address. To cancel your membership

–> and CD pack please email full credit card details to

–> abuse@panamatrix.com

UPDATE – It’s not the first time they’ve tried this, either… Whoops, there goes another one. And another. And here are the reasons why you shouldn’t trust an email like this, spelled out very very carefully, just in case you left your brains in your other pants.

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Date
20040305
Useful
Time
14:25
Why you shouldn’t let Real Player anywhere near your computer. (Link via Simon Willison.)

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Date
20040305
Tony Blair
Time
17:14
A jolly good speech. It even mentions a few issues he’s previously refused to be drawn on. But it still relies on selective memory and is diluted by all the lies, all the spin, and all the failed line-drawing that preceded it.

I won’t be at all surprised if the public decides now is their turn to turn a blind ear.

I love this last bit. Tony’s obviously preparing for a big week next week: “Which brings me to the final point. It may well be that under international law as presently constituted, a regime can systematically brutalise and oppress its people and there is nothing anyone can do, when dialogue, diplomacy and even sanctions fail, unless it comes within the definition of a humanitarian catastrophe (though the 300,000 remains in mass graves already found in Iraq might be thought by some to be something of a catastrophe). This may be the law, but should it be?”

Translation: OK, so we may have broken international law…. but perhaps that international law was wrong!

Yes. Terrorism means we live in a different world now. Nobody has ever used terrorist tactics ever ever in the history of the planet. This is totally new. This calls for totally new rules. Which means that we have to throw out all the old ones. And if Tony believes this in his heart then it must be true.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040308
It’s War! And Totally Justified At That!
Time
10:42
Just a few hours after I graciously blogged that ‘Blair wasn’t as shameless and Bush about selling the phantom Saddam/911 connection,’ he goes ahead and uses it as his Big Stick when drawing his latest line in the sand.

The Guardian has a run-down on media reaction. The Scum, unsurprisingly, back him to the hilt and colour in the tasty bits so you can see all the blood on the door-knob:

The Sun Says – March 6, 2004: All the legal nit-picking by the Left totally misses the point. What mattered was that Saddam Hussein was an unstable lunatic intent on building a deadly arsenal to threaten the West. It was the THREAT, said Blair, that was the crucial issue. By ignoring such threats, the West placed itself in mortal danger…. There are madmen who would love to blow you and your family to pieces.

So the threat Tony was talking about all along wasn’t an immediate threat, but a potential one. Is he moving the goalposts or is stupidity catching?

I’ve expressed this sentiment about the pre-emptive doctrine before, but it was nice to see it in print in Saturday’s Independent:

Sir: Tony Blair has just produced the most cogent argument in favour of vigilantism: if I and my “allies” live on an estate plagued by gangs and we believe that our government and judiciary are paralysed by indecision and debate, then it is incumbent on us to deal with the problem.

BRIAN REID

Oakham, Rutland

From this same edition, comes this article that closes with a quote from Charles Kennedy: The Prime Minister was accused by the Liberal Democrat leader, Charles Kennedy, of mixing the issues of global terrorism and Iraq to construct a justification for the war. Mr Kennedy said that “many people in this country would be very concerned” if the Prime Minister adopted President Bush’s doctrine of pre-emptive attack.

‘Concerned’ isn’t the word I’d choose. Try ‘alarmed’ or ‘appalled’ and you’d be closer…

UPDATE – The Guardian – Blair’s vision of a new world order is critically tainted: Blair is right about the need for a new global compact in which the UN is willing and able to make good the promise outlined in the universal declaration of human rights. He is wrong if he thinks he can achieve it in alliance with a neoconservative American government only interested in democracy and human rights as weapons to advance its own interests.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040308
The Happy Poster Project
Time
10:47
On Saturday I completed a very successful Happy Poster mission to Godalming, but the full report will have to wait, I’m sorry. (I took a bunch of photos, but the disk I used to transfer them to work is corrupted.)

Still, we have this short report from Rik, posting from points rural, and this wonderful email from America:

i’ve been putting the posters up around my dorm, like on the doors of my neighbors and junk. but the one i’m most proud of is the one i placed above the men’s urinal. not just because of how giddy it made me feel, but because i’m a girl, and i had to sneak in all stealthy like to do it. here is a picture of alice above the urinal in platt hall at lewis and clark college in portland, oregon.

dana

Rik’s link and a few new posters will be added to the main page sometime soon.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040308
Riding High on Blogdex
Time
10:56
The Exorcist in 30 Seconds (re-enacted by bunnies) and what looks like referral spam topping the chart.

Also, Bush makes his case with fake firemen in his incredibly straightforward and honest camapign ads while the Republican National Committee is busy intimidating TV stations by claiming that they would be in violation of FCC rules if they air ads from MoveOn.org: “Now that you have been apprised of the law, to prevent further violations of federal law, we urge you to remove these advertisements from your station’s broadcast rotation.”

You might want to take a few minutes to find out what other people think of that.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040308
Rupert ‘The Evil One’ Murdoch
Time
11:45
Rupert is more than ‘the media tycoon we deserve’. And want. Apparently.

Is he really preparing to switch support to the Tories?

Well, today’s coverage in The Scum of Howard’s ‘lower taxes, reduce government and embiggen the nation’ speech reads like a rather pleasant overture. Too bad the cow on Page 3 refuses to play ball.

Howard’s speech failed to electrify Corina (19, from Oxford). Instead the young pretty uses her empowering platform to express her shock at the latest scandals to rock racing. She says: “I love having a bet but these allegations make you wonder if it’s worth it. If races are already decided then punters are throwing their money away.”

Actually, perhaps I’m selling her short. This quote could just as easily be taken as a reference to Murdoch’s role in the next election…

UPDATE – A grab from the front page of today’s website has been sent to Viz for Up The Arse Corner

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040308
The Interwebnet
Time
11:45
Congratulations to Viz for finally getting a halfway decent webshit together, but a lot of the same problems remain…. and whose stupid bloody idea was it to use frames?!

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040308
Consume!
Time
11:48
I remember Ugly Stickers. They made it all the way out to the furthest reaches of the colonies, so they did. (Link via Ultimate Insult.)

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040308
Tony Blair
Time
11:50
The Independent – Foster ridiculed over claims that Caplin influenced Blair

The Guardian – Conman’s claims are nothing but a load of pants, scoffs No 10

And here, for no reason whatsoever, is a quote from a completely unrelated article: “Innocent until proven guilty is absolutely right. However, the fact that nine players put themselves in a position whereby they were even close to a situation of this sort reflects a severe lack of judgement.”

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040308
Yet Another Lame Quiz
Time
11:57
Maybe later, when I have an hour to kill…

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040308
Guantanamo Bay
Time
12:00
Cuba? It was great, say boys freed from US prison camp.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040308
Activism
Time
12:01
“We call, as a matter of the greatest urgency, for the broadest unity against the alarming rise in racism and fascism in Britain today.”

Linked without hesitation.

Signed without fear.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040308
The Political Weblog Movement
Time
12:05
Congratulations to Tom Watson who’s been on Movable Type for a full year now. This post outlines and links some highlights.

UPDATE – Also, take the time to welcome the latest blogging councillor, Bob Piper. I’m going to have to start a bloody directory soon…

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040308
How Weblogs Work
Time
14:30
Found via Doctor Vee; a story about a story.

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Date
20040308
Games
Time
14:55
Not as easy as it looks. (Via Rogi.)

Oh, and remember Spyhunter?

Here’s a free online version in Flash. There’s another version by Cotse floating about. Most copies of this appear to be executable versions that are – stand by for irony – loaded with Spyware, but the original version hosted at Cotse.com is clean and dandy.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040308
Only Interesting to Hardcore Geeks
Time
16:52
I know it’s old, but I tripped over this on my travels today and it still makes me laugh.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040308
Christianity Watch
Time
17:25
The C of E is launching an online parish and is looking for a Web Pastor.

Abnu thinks I should apply, but as an Eclectic Agnostic, all I’ll be allowed to do is shout advice from the sidelines.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040309
The Happy Poster Project – Godalming
Time
10:48
You know, I always liked shopping in the High St of Godalming, and now I know why…

On this Happy Poster mission, I took my eight-year-old son with me. He started out keen, but got a bit worried when the cold-hard reality of what had to be done sunk in, so we took it easy, went with the flow, and ignored places that would almost certainly say ‘no’.

This basically meant that we bypassed banks (scum) and boutiques (minimalist freaks), but as more and more people said ‘yes’, he started taking any rejections in his stride, so eventually we took a few long-shots with large chain stores and were pleasantly surprised on at least two occasions.

Things started off well enough with a series of acceptances for staff rooms, interior notice-boards and the like. We also got a few “I’ll have to check with the boss on Monday” replies, but things were tick-tick-ticking along merrily, so we weren’t too bothered by this or the general lack of window displays.

Or the cheery chappie in Shoecare:

“May we put a poster up in your window?”

“No!”

“Oh. Do you have a staff room?”

“NO!!!!”

That’s Shorecare, folks. 75 High St, Godalming (01483 428575). They repair shoes. And they care. They’d appreciate your business, and sell shoelaces for a low, low, £1.99 a pair.

*ahem*

Highlights:

Our first poster went up in the window of Tread Footwear.

As we started backtracking on the opposite side of the road, we noticed that the poster we had left in the care of The Surrey Bookshop had made its way to the front window. For the record, The Surrey Bookshop was already ahead on points for being one of the last remaining independent book stores in the local area, but we love them even more now. (I’m sure it doesn’t need to be pointed out that WH Smith said ‘no’….)

Andrew Charles, the butcher. Again, ahead on points, and again, no problems with a poster. This is one of the most popular butchers in the area, and you can normally expect to see a queue forming out the door on a Saturday. We’re big fans of their ready-to-cook minted lamb casserole.

Things dried up a bit towards the bottom end of the High St, but we did manage to place this poster, which you may find a bit difficult to spot.

Back across the road, we also had two unexpected successes with staff members in Apollo Video and Halfords who dared to challenge company policy by placing a simple A4 sheet of happiness in the front window. (Sadly, when we returned to Godalming the next day, we saw that both of these posters had been removed, no doubt by sour-faced management types.)

If you get a chance today, I would ask you to raise your glasses in tribute to the heroes of Halfords. Men who have refused to succumb to corporate programming. Men who know the value of community spirit. Men who know that the world needs a message, and that message isn’t ‘”1/2 OFF EVERYTHING!!!”

Bless them. Bless them one and all.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040309
Yet Another Lame Quiz
Time
11:18
OK, I finally took the time. I’m a soft-core libertarian. With effort, I may harden and become pure.

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Date
20040309
Animal Kingdom
Time
11:22
Dead penguins aid research. Shuffle-penguins stifle boredom. Big penguins do whatever they like…

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040309
Flash Thingies
Time
11:30
How to flame in fluent German.

Also, in keeping with the recent bloggage of The Exorcist in 30 seconds with bunnies, allow me to present Big Bunny and Making Fiends.

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Date
20040309
Photoshopping
Time
11:33
Theme: Great cattle of 80’s pop.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040309
Consume!
Time
11:33
UK grocery shoppers are spending up to a 6th of their food-shopping budget on packaging.

On the way into work I heard Sainsburys’ new ad on the radio. The theme song is Harvest for the World.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040309
The Bush Administration
Time
12:03
Here are some surprises and treats for you:

Dick Cheney able to channel someone with sense of humour.

George W. Bush not an evil liar, just an overconfident doofus.

Kerry go flip flop…? Bush go flip-flop-plop-plop!

Drudge gets desperate for dirt; trawls Kerry site for swear words.

And finally, Ornicus on why the press are AWOL on the Bush/Guard issue: The culture in most newsrooms now has created a de facto conservative bias, simply because no one wants to counter the popular memes emanating from the (right-wing media attack machine), since to do so runs the risk of being suspected of “liberal bias.” So when Team Bush decides to stonewall on their candidate’s military records, no one has much incentive to push harder.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040309
Google
Time
12:27
Take a peek at the new-look Google.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040309
Criminal Genius
Time
12:30
A man in Manitowoc, Wisconsin has been posing as a beer distributor and taking neon beer signs away for ‘cleaning’. To date, none of the signs have been returned, and police believe that many of the thefts are going unreported.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040309
Weblogs & Journalism
Time
12:38
Calpundit now blogging for cash.

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Date
20040309
Tony Blair
Time
12:40
GM food is on the way. Whether we like it or not.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040309
How Weblogs Work
Time
12:49
How News Travels on the Internet.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040309
Rebekah ‘Red Mist’ Wade
Time
17:31
To think I almost missed Rebekah Wade’s red mist rising in today’s Scum: A photographer has sparked fury by exhibiting naked snaps of her daughter – which are feared to be attracting paedophiles. The Sun today publishes one of her 63 graphic pictures and also a photo from a child porn website. And we ask readers: Can you tell the difference?

The editorial goes on: What kind of mother puts on public display photos of her young daughter in the nude? American photographer Betsy Schneider says it’s art. But as The Sun so graphically illustrates here the difference between art and child pornography is NIL.

We’ll let the apparent assertion that all art is child pornography slide by. Instead, I’d like to focus on The Scum publishing a photo from a child porn website.

First of all, it needs to be pointed out that the downloading of child pornography is actually permitted in some cases under the News International Internet Policy. The relevant extracts are pasted below for your reference:

Limited, occasional personal use (of the Internet) is permitted, provided it uses only a trivial amount of system resources and of your time, does not interfere with personal or general productivity, and does not breach any legislation or constitute a disciplinary offence…..

Prohibited Acts:

The following are strictly prohibited:

* Accessing, downloading, displaying or distributing pornography except, as described above, for legitimate journalistic research where authorised by a Managing Editor;

Downloading, displaying, disseminating or attempting to download, display or disseminate materials of a racist, sexist, sexual, pornographic or otherwise offensive nature is strictly prohibited and could result in disciplinary action….. It is realised that there will be rare occasions when strict application of this rule would prevent legitimate journalistic research. In such circumstances, to protect yourself, News International and the title for which you work, you must have the agreement of your Managing Editor before you begin your research.

Wade, being the rabid anti-paedo-scum crusader that she is, will have cleared the pursuit, download, censorship and subsequent display of this image in a second. But, in her haste, has she forgotten that the downloading and/or printing of indecent images of children from the Internet has been ruled as an offence under section 1 of the Protection of Children Act 1978?

1.– (1) It is an offence for a person–

a – to take, or permit to be taken, any indecent photograph of a child (meaning in this Act a person under the age of 16) ; or

b – to distribute or show such indecent photographs; or

c – to have in his possession such indecent photographs, with a view to their being distributed or shown by himself or others

The image will have been censored by a graphic designer, but how many computers did it pass through before this happened? Is the core image available via the network?

Me, I say we take no risks with paedo scum and report this to the authorities immediately. They should have no problems getting a warrant authorising a nice policeman to: enter (if need be by force) and search the premises … and to seize and remove any articles which he believes (with reasonable cause) to be or include indecent photographs of children taken or shown on the premises, or kept there with a view to their being dis­tributed or shown.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040310
Guantanamo Bay
Time
08:51
The Independent – Guantanamo suspect walks free, but four others are detained for questioning: Four British Muslims released from Guantanamo Bay were detained last night and one was released after the military aircraft on which they were travelling touched down on British soil.

One of them has – on top of being detained – has already been collared by publicist Max Clifford. Bloody hell, now he’s really in peril. And so are we. Look forward to an ‘orange is the new black’ feature in the next edition of OK! magazine…

Now, on to the four left behind at Gitmo…

Guantanamo four are ‘too dangerous to free’: The four British Muslims who are to remain at Guantanamo Bay are too dangerous to be released, an American official was last night reported as saying. All four trained at al-Qa’ida camps where they learned bombmaking, methods of assassination and urban warfare techniques, making them a “serious threat” should they be released, the source said. The highly unusual step of releasing details of the charges against the men had been taken to counteract opinion expressing concern over the conditions in which detainees were being held at the prison camp in Cuba.

I love how the public has been made aware of the charges (for reasons of political convenience) when this same information has been kept from these men for upwards of two years.

The justification for this airing of confidential information was given by an unnamed source (natch) from the Bush administration. Who, I should remind you, get awfully touchy when WWII references are made about them : “If the British Government had captured Luftwaffe pilots bombing London during the middle of World War Two, they would not have given them lawyers to argue that they were innocent.”

Right-wing twit that he is, Richard Littlejohn agrees with this entirely and, after repeating this quote, he writes: Some soft-headed people still refuse to accept there’s a war on. It’s not a conventional war, but it’s a war nonetheless. And there are different rules in wartime.

There’s a war on? What was all that ‘mission accomplished’ stuff about then? And there are rules? Hang on a sec, I’m going to have to look this up. I’ve never heard anything so ridiculous in my li…

No, wait…. Well, I’ll be darned, he’s right! There are rules that apply during wartime!

And the Guantanamo Bay detentions are in breach of a number of them.

I repeat: Only one detainee needs to be innocent for this to be a tragedy. All of them could be guilty, but their treatment over the last two years would still be illegal.

We close with the kicker from The Scum’s Queen of Denial: What if they decide to take out their frustration at being held in a prison camp for two years by driving a truck bomb into the Bullring shopping centre or detonating a Semtex waistcoat in Selfridges?

Behold the mighty voice of righteousness and self-fulfilling prophecy!

Heh. The details and local place-names are a nice touch, too. That’s a ‘blood on the knob’ moment that would do Rush Limbaugh proud. I wonder if Littlejohn has a poster of Limbaugh on his wall. Or perhaps his ceiling…

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040310
The Interwebnet
Time
08:52
Sharon Dyson, blah-blah, Trevor Luxton, blah-blah, Claire Swire, blah-blah…

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Date
20040310
The Happy Poster Project
Time
09:01
The Happy Poster Project looks set to hit the streets of Greece after front-page linkage at this popular portal.

That’s the language barrier cracked again, then.

BTW, several new posters have been submitted, including one in Dutch. Apologies that they haven’t gone up yet. Time isn’t on my side.

UPDATE – Heh. One can only wonder where they get their links. On the front page of Pathfinder today: Beware the Cola Ninjas and lighter-theft etiquette. Both of these links appeared alongside the Happy Poster Project in B3ta newsletter #124.

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Date
20040310
Riding High on Blogdex
Time
09:19
The Libertarian Purity Test is still holding the top spot. Just under this is news of a new drive that will let you burn data and a label onto a CD.

Just under that…

From the right-thinking media, who wish to protect you from rich people and well-funded interest groups:

New York Post – Mrs Kerry’s Cash Connection: To hear some folks tell it, families of the 9/11 victims have risen en masse to denounce President Bush for using brief images from Ground Zero in his campaign commercials… But now it turns out that this whole furor is driven by a tiny group that’s motivated by a far-left agenda and a festering hatred of the president – and has some quite dubious financial ties.

Says the Murdoch-owned newspoaper with absolutely no ties to the Republican Party or the Bush adminstration…

From the filthy liberal left, who insist on finding fault with everything:

New York Times – Promises, Promises: Despite a string of dismal employment reports, the administration insists that its economic program, which has relied entirely on tax cuts focused on the affluent, will produce big job gains any day now. Should we believe these promises? Economic forecasting isn’t an exact science, but wishful thinking on this scale is unprecedented. Nor can the administration use its all-purpose excuse: all of these forecasts date from after 9/11. What you see in this chart is the signature of a corrupted policy process, in which political propaganda takes the place of professional analysis.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040310
Criminal Genius
Time
09:36
Meet Alice Regina Pike, who tried to pass bogus $1 million bill at her local Wal-Mart. Check out Rush Limbaugh working this into his spiel (click the audio link for full effect).

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040310
The War on Drugs
Time
10:07
Charlize Theron likes to smoke her grass through an apple (includes some NSFW links), and good for her. Cucumber hashpipes are pretty nifty, too. As are bongs made from rockmelons. Ask Tim Yeo. He knows.

UPDATE – Please note that massive hookas made from watermelons should not be attempted after pulling an all-nighter, as their construction involves the use of large, sharp knives. Yes, I speak from experience…

Oh, and also featuring some dodgy NSFW links, via The Ultimate Insult we find an alphabetical listing of drug slang.

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Date
20040310
Video
Time
10:26
Hooray for midget bullfighting!

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040310
Flash Thingies
Time
10:29
A soothing classic, brought to mind via Funjunkie.

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Date
20040310
Photoshopping
Time
10:32
Inspired by the many tall tales of the Bush administration and triggered by Al Franken’s Pepsi Sydrome sketch, which features this wonderful exchange:

Reporter #1: Is it true that the president is 100 feet tall?

Spokesman: Nooooo! Absolutely not!

Reporter #2: Is the president 90 feet tall?

(beat)

Spokesman: No comment.

Click here for a large version.

UPDATE – This image has been front-paged at B3ta. Always a kick. From The Magic Donkey. Who may or may not be of the Republican variety…

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Date
20040310
Consume!
Time
11:26
Yorkshire couple name their child ‘Diot Coke’…. in 1379.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040310
Rebekah ‘Red Mist’ Wade
Time
14:16
From today’s Sun editorial: Many readers were shocked by the child porn picture we printed yesterday. That was our intention. The vile exploitation of innocent children IS shocking. So is the irresponsible attitude of photographer Betsy Schneider, who puts making money from what she calls art before the well-being of her own child. People like her don’t understand the horrific consequences and the frightening scale of child pornography. They don’t realise how many hundreds of thousands of children are emotionally and physically scarred for life. It is because of the suffering of all those little ones that The Sun makes no apologies for its actions. Already, perverts have used their phones to copy Ms Schneider’s explicit photos and then broadcast them on the internet. The Sun will not rest until it has jolted the world into stamping out this evil tide of filth.

Rebekah Wade is talking out of her ginger-rimmed freckle again. This alarmist claptrap blows ‘the frightening scale of child pornography’ well out of proportion and is itself deeply irresponsible.

Yesterday I wondered out loud if Wade and her staff had acted in breach the Protection of Children Act 1978 by obtaining kiddie-porn and passing it around their office as part of the process of research, selection, censorship and design before publication. Today, the Sun ‘makes no apologies’, and ups the ante by distributing the images it claims should not be distributed: An undercover Sun reporter took 13 of the American snapper’s pictures of daughter Madeleine into the chemist’s branch in Birmingham High Street. He handed the images over on a CD and asked for the one-hour developing service.

Boots were operating according to guidelines published by a trade body known as the Photo Marketing Association International. These guidelines leading to the identification of these images as possibly pornographic by the local Boots chemist (who always get these things right) does help The Scum make their case about art/porn, but it kind of pisses on their argument about distribution.

Also, this matter has been reported. The relevant authorities are considering what action – if any – they should take. It has gone well beyond the point where public awareness plays a valid role. Wade having yet another shouty-crackers fit about paedo-scum after the fact does not serve the public interest, it only serves her ego and the circulation of her ‘news’paper.

The added publicity they’re drumming up to sell papers (while shaming the woman who ‘puts making money from what she calls art before the well-being of her own child’) makes it far more likely that young Madeleine will be ‘emotionally and physically scarred for life’ as a result of all this, and the ‘ten thousand copies released over the Internet’ claim pales into insignificance next to the three million or so copies distributed by The Scum yesterday.

Censored or not, the images would certainly be defined by Section 1 of the Obscene Publications Act 1959 as something that may ‘tend to deprave and corrupt persons who are likely, having regard to all relevant circumstances, to read, see or hear the matter contained or embodied in it.’

How many readers of The Scum looked at these images yesterday and thought “Phwoarrrrr!”…? How many thought “Well, if it’s *that* common, I shouldn’t have any trouble finding some myself!”…? And so on. I know these two scenarios sound pretty far-fetched and buy into Wade’s picture of your typical paedo-scum draped in raincoat and legs a-quiver as he roams the streets looking for children to abduct, but it’s also possible that someone will become fixated on this young girl as a result of the coverage. Not to abuse her, but to saaaaaaaaaaaaaave her! Hell, damage could be done to a child simply by exposing them to this stark imagery and ‘monsters on the loose’ text that accompanies it.

The point is that there are all sorts of possible effects on all sorts of people that Wade has no way of predicting. The only thing she can know for certain is that distributing millions of versions of this image to the general public greatly increases the statistical possibly of this child – or any child – being traumatised or placed at risk as a result.

And for what? What purpose does this outrage serve at this stage other than to increase fear beyond all proportion and boost circulation?

I agree with her on one point; the vile exploitation of innocent children IS shocking. And you can see it in action every time Rebekah Wade starts foaming at the mouth about it.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040310
Flash Movies
Time
14:57
A little treat for you on No Smoking Day.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040311
Activism
Time
09:58
Meet Mike Emmons. He’s just a normal guy who has had a gutful. But he needs to escape from those frames and hook up properly as a blogger.

UPDATE – Wow, look at all the people slagging him off as a US traitor. There’s even some guy there who goes by the name of ‘Tim Ireland’… do I need to point out that it’s not me?

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040311
Riding High on Blogdex
Time
10:00
Top spot: This Bush/Cheney poster generator helpfully suggests that you ‘please change your entry’ if you try to enter custom text like, say, ‘War Criminals’… but here’s a bunch of stuff you can get away with.

In 2nd place today, this reprint service from Corante, which is only there because every blogger working for that company features it. It’s just the inclusion of plug text in the standard design they share, so I don’t think it was planned… but still, it looks a bit average.

3rd is CNN reporting on the million-dollar-bill woman.

Further down but sure to rise is the story of the chap who bought a new mobile and ended up with Chris Rock’s old phone number.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040311
Guantanamo Bay
Time
10:09
Reuters – Guantanamo Britons freed: Police have freed all five Britons flown home from Guantanamo Bay prison camp as the former terror suspects began denouncing their U.S. captors amid questions about why they were held for two years.

Meanwhile, media outlets that by and large ignored their plight when they were locked up are bidding like mad for access now they’re free. Makes you proud, doesn’t it?

Consider this: the Bush administration only felt compelled to release information relating to charges against the four who are still being detained because they were losing the PR war. With some solid media backing, these men could have been freed much, much earlier. By reporting responsibly and doggedly now, the media can help the 600 others who are being held without charge, without rights, and without recourse. But I’m not holding my breath.

UPDATE – More thoughts from The UK Today.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040311
“The same thing we do every day, Pinky…”
Time
10:19
It’s been nine months since Tim Yeo and I first crossed swords. He still hasn’t apologised. Maybe he doesn’t understand quite what’s happening, so I’ll explain it again. The Tim Yeo weblog is the top result on searches for his name in just about every search engine on the planet. There’s even a new category for Tim Yeo in the ODP that features it.

Result? Every time he appears in a major news story (which happens a lot now he’s the Shadow Minister For Everything) thirty to fifty new people turn up at the weblog, wanting to find out more. But all they find out is that he’s my web-bitch.

*cough*

Also, it’s almost 12 months since MPs voted to appease Bush. I’m still trying to work out how I’m going to mark the anniversary on the 18th, but marching on the 20th looks like a plan.

UPDATE – More protest info from unitedforpeace.org

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040311
11/9 (please note correct formatting of date)
Time
10:21
Some comments on the Bush/WTC picture blogged yesterday. How dare I exploit such a tragedy…

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040311
It’s War! And Somebody’s Telling Porkies!
Time
10:32
Salon.com – The new Pentagon papers: A high-ranking military officer reveals how Defense Department extremists suppressed information and twisted the truth to drive the country to war.

They’ve done away with the usual adview/registration rigmarole just for this very special article. Isn’t that nice?

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040311
Music
Time
10:38
George Michael has announced that he’s retiring from the music business and plans to release all future songs on the Interwebnet – for free.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040311
Bunch of Stuff
Time
10:40
The Guardian has been a jolly good read of late. Some highlights:

Poor lighting and Post-it notes on display screen blamed for £5m sub crash.

Murdoch makes his move on Five.

US study of teenage sexual disease destroys basis of virginity crusade.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040311
I. Want. My. Windmill!
Time
11:57
Government’s chief scientific adviser speaks out: “In my view, climate change is the most severe problem that we are facing today, more serious even than the threat of terrorism.”

Downing St asks very nicely if he would limit the number of interviews he gives on this subject.

Government’s chief scientific adviser denies he was gagged.

All very jolly, but this is what really caught my eye…

Sir George King on energy research and what’s being done about it: “We found something very unnerving, which was that faced with the climate change issue the UK’s investment in energy research had dropped very, very sharply, and the reason for that is very simple. The Central Electricity Generating Board had been privatised and the utilities shut down the research laboratory they inherited.

Isn’t privatisation wonderful?

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040311
Consume!
Time
13:19
Hah! Found by Scaryduck

To discover the secret ingredient that makes Coca Cola’s new bottled tap water so expensive, simply:

1. Go to www.dasani.com

2. Click on ‘downloads’

3. Hover your mouse over the woman

UPDATE – Twenty minutes later and I’m still chuckling. I love the look on her face. She’s totally ready for the money-shot.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040311
Established Media
Time
13:26
Guardian introduces registration: We also hope that by taking a minute of your time to register, we can keep the site free of charges for the foreseeable future.

You may as well register now. I link to this filthy pinko broadsheet at least twice a day, and I’d hate to inconweenience you at some later stage.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040311
Photoshopping
Time
14:22
Sigmund Freud was walking through the park one day when….

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040311
Google
Time
15:03
A much-needed and well-written warning: Google provides a remarkable level of access to any screen doors you may leave banging open.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040311
Normal People
Time
15:16
Hooray for the Bristol Concert Wind Band and their top-notch testimonials.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040311
The Happy Poster Project
Time
15:49
Oops.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040311
Consume!
Time
15:55
From the maker of Playboy Barbie and Bondage Barbie comes ‘commemorative’ boob-flash Janet & Justin dolls.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040311
Don’t Mention The Nazis
Time
17:19
Bush’s Gay Marriage Ban – I’d Leave the Country, but My Wife Won’t Let Me.

A good article. A fabulous illustration. More by Mirko Ilic can be found here. (Cheers to Dave for the links.)

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040312
Art
Time
09:26
Some lovely and subversive images sent in by Charlotte. I know I’ve probably blogged them before, but they’re worth another look.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040312
Riding High on Blogdex
Time
09:27
Topping the chart is news of the new USB Swiss Army Knife. Please be warned that, even with up to 128MB of memory, you could still wake up forgetting what you did with the knife after you used the corkscrew a few times.

The rest of the chart is old news, bad news, and more fools watching hardcore porn while they drive.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040312
Inneresting
Time
09:33
Your chance to interview a virtual Hitler. Your mileage may vary…

Why did you kill yourself?

My wife and I killed ourselves in May 1945 because we were convinced that the Russians would torture and humiliate us if we were caught alive.

Where’s the gold?

I’m currently sitting in cyperspace. It’s really nice here, actually.

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Date
20040312
Photoshopping
Time
09:51

###########################

Man oh man, I’m going to have a *lot* of fun with this poster enlarger today.

###########################

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Date
20040312
Christianity Watch
Time
09:57
Man cuts off penis and runs down street, screaming “Repent, repent, fornicators.”

If only others could be as dedicated to the Lord:

Study finds that teenage virginity pledges are rarely kept.

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Date
20040312
It’s Law! And Somebody’s Telling Porkies!
Time
10:05
Shades of George Galloway…

Anti-war activist Susan P. Lindauer accused of spying for Saddam.

The Smoking Gun has the paperwork.

A free plastic whistle for the first person to spot a thread that says this proves all anti-war activists are traitors and/or all protestors are terrorists.

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Date
20040312
11/9 (please note correct formatting of date)
Time
10:13
See a storyboard of the latest Bush/Cheney ad.

Read about Bush squandering the trauma of ‘911’.

Wonder if FDR would have done the same.

UPDATE – Annoyingly, the Guardian article references Bush’s bullshit trifecta comment.

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Date
20040312
Consume!
Time
10:21
The UK Today reports the following: For anyone who missed out on the secret ingredient in Coca Cola’s Dasani tap water, it is now too late. Someone responsible for the website as obviously picked up on thread posted by Scaryduck and spotted that spunk has a completely different meaning this side of the Atlantic.

A good thing that I got a screengrab, then.

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Date
20040312
Animal Kingdom
Time
10:30
Beware the squirrels!

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Date
20040312
The Hutton Inquiry
Time
10:39
We’re still waiting for the results of Lord Hutton’s ‘urgent’ investigation into the leak of some of his conclusions to The Scum that so conveniently set the tone for Tony and his cronies.

I called the DCA Press Office. It was hard enough to get an answer at all (I’m not from a newspaper, and therefore have nothing to do with media or publishing, y’see) but I pressed for one and got it. Kind of.

They have no idea how long it will take. No idea at all.

I don’t sense a lot of urgency. I think a little pressure is called for…

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Date
20040312
Richard Littlejohn: Queen of Denial
Time
10:52
It’s official, Richard Littlejohn is an arse of the highest order. Speaking today on the ‘Tipton Taliban’, he says:

Their cover stories simply aren’t credible. One seems to be claiming he went to Afghanistan to look for a wife. All the women wore burkas under the Taliban, so how could he tell which one he fancied?

OK, so perhaps that was a joke. It’s hard to tell if someone’s smiling when their mouth is spattered with foam. Let’s try this instead:

But were they ill treated? Conditions at Camp X-Ray didn’t strike me as much worse than the average American jail. At least they didn’t suffer the indignity of being forced to play prison bitch to a 22-stone rapper doing a 15-to-life stretch for a drive-by homicide.

Hmm, that might be a joke. That, or one of the countless references to homosexuality that make it to print in his column courtesy of his cock-hungry subconscious.

Mind you, I think he managed to take his mind off sex with men and be serious long enough to say:

Their main grievance is that they weren’t allowed access to lawyers during their interrogation and the Geneva Convention wasn’t followed to the last dot and comma.

Last dot and comma? Their detention and treatment was in breach of 15 articles! That’s a lot of dots and commas.

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Date
20040312
Established Media
Time
12:57
The Times – The web diary, the book deal and the very happy hooker: The internet diary of Belle de Jour, in which a 28-year-old call girl describes her sexual exploits, began as a web sensation and has now earned it’s author a six-figure publishing deal. But who is the author? And is it even a she?

Tut-tut-tut, silly Times journalists….

1. Repeat to yourself 50 times a day until you get it right; “It’s = it is, it’s = it is, it’s = it is, it’s = it IS!

2. You wouldn’t want to do anything stupid like credit the source of the speculation, now would you?

What is about newspaper journalists? They seem to see the Interwebnet as this broad, fuzzy wasteland where credit, sources and copyright don’t count. (Link via someplace on the web.)

UPDATE – Is fair point. Me words no always ferpect neyther.

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Date
20040312
Google
Time
13:53
Nice try, Searchking.

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Date
20040312
The Happy Poster Project
Time
13:55
Two new posters have been added to The Happy Poster Project.

Oh, and I forgot to mention yesterday that several walls, doors, corners and noticeboards at Westminster Palace are now much, much happier. I’m kicking myself that I didn’t take a camera with me. Next time…

Right now I’m wondering where I’ll get away with an absolutely massive poster.

UPDATE – Well, well, well, look at what we have here.

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Date
20040312
Photoshopping
Time
14:38
Beware the demon seed!

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Date
20040312
Bush: AWOL
Time
14:40
Finally, the truth can be told: Where Dubya Really Went in 1972

(Link via Bingobowden, which also leads us to this excellent Steve Bell cartoon on the subject of bug-boy Blair.)

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Date
20040312
Normal People
Time
16:24
B3ta interviews the Disney Tattoo Guy.

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Date
20040312
Video
Time
17:43
This is a knock-out commercial, but I wouldn’t have been able to hunt it down without help from TTR2, because mine was sent as an attachment with the credits chopped off.

If you’re releasing a promotional video or flash thingie online:

Should you host it? Maybe.

Should you expect it escape? Almost certainly.

Should you watermark it throughout with a name or URL? Definitely.

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Date
20040315
Weblog ‘Marketing’
Time
10:13
Oh, FFS. Another marketing genius stumbles into the wonderful world of weblogs…..

Found via this referral spam activity this morning; a crappy spamblog on the subject of ‘Britney Spears Nude’.

It’s part of a wider selection of blogs, all linking to each other and run by the same person. Not unlike the pioneering efforts of Iron Hank, but with a central theme of celebrity nudity.

Anna Kournikova Nude, Christina Aguilera Nude, Janet Jackson Nude, Jennifer Aniston Nude, Jennifer Lopez Nude… you get the idea.

The content is a selection of news articles on each celebrity in question (easily done – even with this many subjects – via Google’s News Alerts and the ‘Blog This’ feature on their toolbar) but for the nude content each title/URL promises you have to follow the same link on each site:

http://www.nudecelebblogs.com/nude/

This leads you directly to an (affiliate) sign-up page for SecretCelebs.com

The core site itself at nudecelebblogs.com is posing as an open directory of blogs on a nude celebrity theme, but the ‘contact us’ graphic has no link, and neither does the ‘add your blog’ graphic. A look-up on this domain name’s link cosmos reveals what appears to be yet more referral spam activity. (Oh, the top listed blog there is http://paris-hilton-video.blogspot.com/ and you can see a past history of referral and comment spam for this URL here.)

The domain WHOIS data is as follows:

Domain name: nudecelebblogs.com

Administrative Contact:

XC Appliance Mart

X C (xiang_chow@hotmail.com)

+852.27892541

Fax: +852.27892512

91823 Xixiang RdClear Water Bay, Kowloon 00000

HK

I’m publishing this because the email address led me to this Usenet posting clearly showing that it’s not his first ‘pretend content’ portal, but it does look to be his first foray into weblog spam.

I’m starting with a complaint to Blogger.com, but considering the community-based nature of the new format he’s chosen to exploit, perhaps we should think of a special and personal way to welcome this lovely man to our corner of the Interwebnet.

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Date
20040315
Only Interesting to Bloggers
Time
10:18
SXSW came under fire from Boing Boing and others for some distinctly anti-blog policies (including no photography and no wall-juice for laptops). Joi Ito blogs the policy changes that followed a bit of foot-stamping.

Also, inspired by The Blog Heckler, NOT Abercrombie Chick takes on Hot Abercrombie Chick.

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Date
20040315
Riding High on Blogdex
Time
10:26
What’s your favourite celebrity’s favourite swear word? (2.9 Mb Flash show; requires sound. NSFW without headphones.)

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Date
20040315
The Bush Administration
Time
10:32
Jamaica? No, he went of his own accord. B-bm, tisch!

And, in completely unrelated news…

The Independent – US revealed to be secretly funding opponents of Chavez: Washington has been channelling hundreds of thousands of dollars to fund the political opponents of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez – including those who briefly overthrew the democratically elected leader in a coup two years ago.

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Date
20040315
The End of Democracy
Time
10:44
Sketchy reports and some coverage coming in about riots on northern Iran. The right is delighted.

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Date
20040315
Viral Marketing
Time
10:52
Making a site look as crap as possible can work; but you do need to have some content to back it up. More Of The Same with a new image doesn’t work at the best of times.

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Date
20040315
Anyone but George
Time
10:59
BBC – Kerry demands debates with Bush. You’ll love the way Bush’s team takes the moral high ground.

Also, here’s a picture from the set of the latest Bush/Cheney commercial.

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Date
20040315
Established Media
Time
11:01
Here comes the London News Review.

You’ll need to register to read Paul Carr’s article on why big marketing budgets aren’t necessary for magazine launches. He’s right, you know. Online markets can provide a significant groundswell. Especially when you can whore your new mag in The Guardian and count on people like me to comment on it.

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Date
20040315
Page 3 – Words of Wisdom
Time
11:55
Today Krystle (21, from London) says the government is right to crack down on booze bingeing. She says: “We all like to enjoy a sociable drink now and then. Like everything lese, booze is fine in moderation. But some people are out of control. It’s got to stop.”

Is this a subtle message from Wade to her hacks? According to most reports, being the equivalent of a genius in Canary Wharf simply involves staying sober in the afternoons.

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Date
20040315
The War on Terror
Time
12:17
Mark Steyne (who, I suspect, was on crack when he wrote this), assures us in this wonderful piece that we can’t blame our governments for the increased threat of terrorist attacks because of their role in Iraq war because the ragheads want to kill us all anyway. So there you go.

BTW, the illegal actions of our government play no role in fostering sympathy for terrorists, thereby increasing the threat of a successful attack on our country.

*cough*

The right wing view this morning appears to be that the Socialist win in Spain is a win for terrorism and do you know what? I agree. The bombing was a vital catalyst in an unprecedented swing against a party holding an absolute majority.

But only because the Popular Party government tried to manipulate the tragedy of last week’s bombing. The votes cast against them weren’t the result of the bombing itself, but the way they tried to exploit it.

Not believing in any government’s take on the terrorist threat does not mean that I don’t believe in terrorists or the threat they pose. It simply means that I don’t believe that government.

UPDATE – Similar thoughts from Atrios and Calpundit.

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Date
20040315
We’re Not At Home To Mr Cockup
Time
12:25
Wired – Bush Site Unplugs Poster Tool : The campaign changed the tool Thursday so that users could no longer enter their own messages, but only select from a pull-down list of states and coalition groups. The campaign didn’t respond to requests for comment.

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Date
20040315
Tony Blair
Time
14:56
It. Wasn’t. Me. Now stop asking. Please.

Oh, but I do have something special planned for Saturday. If anyone wants to meet up, it’s do-able. I’ll be in pretty much the same place for most of the day.

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Date
20040315
Flash Games
Time
15:46
Wheee-spronggggggg-flumff!








About Tim Ireland

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