02-13 August, 2004

This entry was posted on
Monday, August 2nd, 2004
at
9:20 am and is filed
under Uncategorized.

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Date
20040802
Updates
Time
09:20
You may have missed this quick bit o’ bloggage on Saturday. I’m seriously considering writing a page specifically for lazy journalists who can’t be bothered to look at more than one page of a website before writing it up.

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Date
20040802
The General Election
Time
09:23
The election draws near, and here’s the first sign of silly money…

Tories in Turmoil: After another bout of infighting and jockeying for position Tory panic is rising and the knives are out. The big question on everyone’s minds is what will happen next in the Tory House of Turmoil? Now’s your chance to vote on which Tory you would send packing from the house.

As Irritant notes: Tactically this anti-Tory page is not a clever idea as it’s almost begging someone like Tim Ireland or B3ta to knock out a Labour version fairly sharpish.

Indeed it is, only this time the main weapon won’t be domain hijacking but search engine dominance. Here’s the target.

I’m sure a few ideas will be bounced around today, but in the meantime I want to share last night’s dream with you…

I opened the newspaper to see a two-page ad plugging Labour. Strangely, it wasn’t red in theme, but more of a More Than green and blue. For an ad that took up so much space, it had very little to say; the message was; ‘Expect us to last!’

I went outside and the first thing I saw was a billboard with exactly the same message. And another. And another. Labour had started their campaign before announcing the election; and boy, had they started strong. Every inch of available billboard space had been booked and used.

Already there were little protest posters going up on the billboards complaining that Labour hadn’t left any billboards for the other parties. Other billboards had been altered so they said; ‘Expect the least!’

I was looking at one of these when I was invited to lunch by some friends. At first glance the place looking like an automated funeral parlour (food for the wake was in vending machines, a body was lying in state in something that looked like a glass-fronted cigarette machine) but we were led through this to a more restaurant-like arrangement in the back and asked to sit at a large table in the middle of a concrete balcony. Some building work was going on and things were quite noisy, so I declined the offer of lunch. Besides, I was still wearing my pyjamas.

I walked down some dodgy stairs beside the restaurant and saw that the concrete balcony was only being held aloft by some rickety scaffolding. I went for a walk by the river and had many adventures.

Weird, huh?

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Date
20040802
Inneresting
Time
09:25
Send an Elvis e-card! (Found via Myrtledene.)

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Date
20040802
The Political Weblog Movement
Time
09:33
Clive Soley on being incorrectly labelled a Lib-Dem: After 26 years service in the House of Commons and one of the first blogging MP’s and proud owner of a blog entitled “Labour MP for Ealing, Acton and Shepherds Bush” they have called ME a Liberal Democrat MP! OH MY GOD! THE SHAME! Can I live with it?

The Jim Cousins Blog has also hit a minor snag or two with coverage in a local paper: Apart from a few minor inaccuracies, like extending my offer of a few months technical support to a year (Which I’ll honour Jim – it get’s better and better.), the now obligatory ‘web logger’ reference, saying I update daily (I wish I had the time – that’s where Jim comes in I hope), the fact I may reveal my true identity and the omission of my explicit statement that computer programming has nothing to do with it and is in no way required to write a blog the journalist did at least do a bit of background on the reason for doing it including a mention for Tim at Bloggerheads and the Alan Milburn proxy blog, just down the road from here at Darlington.

That mention of moi, BTW, repeats the erroneous description of me as an ‘Australian-born programmer’… when in truth I’m lucky if I can set my alarm clock correctly. Ho-hum.

BTW, sometime today or tomorrow we move on from encouraging William Hague and hit a new Tory target in his stead. Same offer; same technique.

UPDATE – Mike of the Alan Milburn blog also feels a tad misrepresented.

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Date
20040802
A Blog is Born
Time
09:44
UK Future has been launched by Brazilian-born horse-trader James Malcolm in an attempt to ‘provoke informal political debate’ and fight voter apathy.

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Date
20040802
It’s War! It’s Legal! It’s Lovely!
Time
09:47
Independent – Officers vetoed inquiries into 23 deaths: Army officers blocked police investigations into the deaths of more than 20 Iraqis during incidents involving British troops, raising concerns about the Army’s right to stop inquiries into fatal shootings. Investigations by The Independent on Sunday have revealed that British Army commanders in Iraq routinely used their powers to stop the Royal Military Police and detectives in the Special Investigations Branch from looking into fatal shootings.

Independent – Fair price for a life? Army pays Iraqi family £390 after shooting girl dead: Hanan Saleh Matrud died in an alleyway near her home in northern Basra after a British soldier with the King’s Regiment opened fire nearby. The ricocheting bullet left a deep wound across her stomach, and she later died in hospital. The soldiers claim they fired a warning shot in the air after being targeted by “heavy stone-throwing” by mobs. Local eyewitnesses dispute the claim, and allege that only children were in the streets. The Army admitted the shot “possibly” caused her injury and paid her parents $700, but without admitting responsibility for her death.

That name may seem familiar to regular readers; here’s why.

These two articles were part of a large feature in the Independent on Sunday, the centrepiece was this article by Martian-born ferret-handler Robert Fisk…

Robert Fisk – ‘Can’t Blair see that this country is about to explode? Can’t Bush?’: The stage management of this catastrophe in Iraq was all too evident at Saddam Hussein’s “trial”. Not only did the US military censor the tapes of the event. Not only did they effectively delete all sound of the 11 other defendants. But the Americans led Saddam Hussein to believe – until he reached the courtroom – that he was on his way to his execution. Indeed, when he entered the room he believed that the judge was there to condemn him to death. This, after all, was the way Saddam ran his own state security courts. No wonder he initially looked “disorientated” – CNN’s helpful description – because, of course, he was meant to look that way…. But don’t think we’re going to learn much more about Saddam’s future court appearances. Salem Chalabi, the brother of convicted fraudster Ahmad and the man entrusted by the Americans with the tribunal, told the Iraqi press two weeks ago that all media would be excluded from future court hearings.

Meanwhile: Drive that wedge, baby – drive it!

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Date
20040802
Useful
Time
09:58
Rent a peasant.

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Date
20040802
An American Election
Time
10:02
I smell desperation… or more Drudge bulldust; Republicans planning to eliminate IRS. It sounds great… but only if you don’t think about it too much. In other words, your average Bush-supporter will eat it up. Along with their tinned beans and hog’s anus. More at Atrios.

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Date
20040802
It’s War! And Somebody’s Telling Porkies!
Time
10:11
Washington Monthly are cooking something up on the Iraq/Uranium/Nigeria lie.

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Date
20040802
The War on Terror
Time
10:19
Be afraid! Stay alert! Go on with your lives! Be happy in your work!

Also, Poons has a bloody good point here. I’m not a big fan of animal rights activists, either – but if we’re not careful we’ll soon find that police will be armed with a whole new set of laws designed to stifle all forms of protest as and when is ‘necessary’… this issue also blurs the line between terrorists and protestors; a line that is already pretty blurred abroad and at home.

(Incidentally, does that ban on protesting outside people’s homes extend to people marching on Downing Street?)

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Date
20040802
We’re Not At Home To Mr Cock-Up
Time
11:33
Curious name for a computer desk, wouldn’t you say?

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Date
20040802
Normal People
Time
12:51
Found Photos should keep you busy and well-freaked for the rest of the afternoon.

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Date
20040802
The War on Stupid
Time
15:23
epolitix – Labour website mocks ‘Tory turmoil’

Scotsman – Labour’s Big Brother Jibe at Tories

That second article lets us know that this clevery-clogs campaign does have a domain: www.toriesinturmoil.co.uk

Mind you, this currently redirects to the main page of labour.org.uk…. perhaps because the page at www.labour.org.uk/toriesinturmoil has been withdrawn for some unknown reason. (Best guess: the site’s database fell over about 3 hours ago, so it’s probably just being retooled or something.)

UPDATE – Someone must have pressed ‘reset’ – the whole site went down at 5:15pm… now, at 5:30pm, Tories in Turmoil lives and breathes once more.

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Date
20040802
Opportunities
Time
16:20
Party in London this Friday night. Email me for details.

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Date
20040802
Sudan
Time
19:19
Like many, when I think about Sudan, I always end up wondering how it will impact on poor Mr Blair.

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Date
20040802
Photoshopping
Time
20:44
Animation genius. That is all.

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Date
20040803
The War on Terror
Time
09:51
But this time it’s different; it’s not just chatter. We have clear intelligence of a specific threat! Right?

New York Times – Reports That Led to Terror Alert Were Years Old, Officials Say: Much of the information that led the authorities to raise the terror alert at several large financial institutions in the New York City and Washington areas was three or four years old, intelligence and law enforcement officials said on Monday. They reported that they had not yet found concrete evidence that a terrorist plot or preparatory surveillance operations were still under way.

Washington Post – Pre-9/11 Acts Led To Alerts: Most of the al Qaeda surveillance of five financial institutions that led to a new terrorism alert Sunday was conducted before the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks and authorities are not sure whether the casing of the buildings has continued, numerous intelligence and law enforcement officials said yesterday.

Independent – A nation in danger. Or a president in peril?: The former Democratic presidential candidate Howard Dean highlighted the concerns of many without access to the information. “It’s hard to know what to make [of it]. None of us outside the administration have access to the intelligence which led to this determination,” he said. “I am concerned that every time something happens that’s not good for President Bush, he plays this trump card, which is terrorism,” he told CNN. “His whole campaign is based on the notion that ‘I can keep you safe, therefore, at times of difficulty for America, stick with me’ and then out comes Tom Ridge. It’s just impossible to know how much of this is real and how much of this is politics, and I suspect there’s some of both in it.”

Howard dean? Isn’t he that crazy shouty person? Should we really be listening to him? (Read some discussion on this and related matters here.)

Anyway, as I was saying; this time it’s different. It’s not just chatter. We have clear intelligence of a specific threat! Something to do with American banks and financial institutions, if I’m not mistaken. And we have a few of them here in the UK, so – though the threat in our case is rather vague and unspecific – it does result from clear intelligence of a specific threat. With me so far?

Some less responsible people have told Blair to put up or shut up, but today the Daily Mail takes the more prudent step of assuming the worst. They’ve chosen to go with the powerful headline; AL QAEDA’S CHILLING PLOT TO TARGET BRITAIN

Dammit! Now I’m in an advanced state of fear and anxiety (some call it “heightened readiness”) and I’m worried about what effect this is going to have on the value of my house. I simply don’t have room for my brain for this, which just happens to be going on at the same time…

Guardian – Military Hearing Set for Lynndie England: A military hearing was set to start Tuesday that will begin gathering evidence to see if Pfc. Lynndie England should be court-martialed for her actions. The Article 32 hearing is the military equivalent of a grand jury in civilian court. The hearing will be the first chance in court for the 21-year-old Army reservist’s attorneys to make their case that she was following orders from higher-ups when she was photographed mocking naked detainees at Abu Ghraib.

But, if I did, something in the back of my mind would assure me that – because Iraqis are terrorists – these measures that weren’t authorised at the highest level would be justified even if they were – which they weren’t – because we have to do everything we can to fight the War on Terror.

And not only is mental torture marginally more acceptable than physical torture, it’s also more economically viable. (Now, stay with me here, because we are talking about the War on Terror and the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction. These people are animals, and they deserve everything they get. Erm, and we needed answers to important questions like “Where are the WMDs?”)

Even with a large contingent of willing troops (or, if you prefer, ‘bad apples’) and a continuous supply of Viagra, it simply wouldn’t be possible to sodomise all 8000 detainees. (Or was it 10-15,000? It’s hard to tell with some people being left off the books and so many hostages coming and going.)

No, it’s far more efficient to simply sodomise their children, tape these events, and then use the tapes on the other prisoners.

Alternatively, if sodomy isn’t on the cards (let’s face it, some days you’re just not in the mood), there’s always this method to fall back on: A military intelligence analyst who recently completed duty at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq said Wednesday that the 16-year-old son of a detainee there was abused by U.S. soldiers in order to break his father’s resistance to interrogators. The analyst said the teenager was stripped naked, thrown in the back of an open truck, driven around in the cold night air, splattered with mud and then presented to his father at Abu Ghraib, the prison at the center of the ongoing scandal over abuse of Iraqi detainees. Upon seeing his frail and frightened son, the prisoner broke down and cried and told interrogators he would tell them whatever they wanted, the analyst said.

Admittedly that’s rather labour-intensive, but it only took a few hours and saved days of beatings. Besides, I hear that – while being physically demanding – such activity can be rather fun…

Rolling Stone – The Secret File of Abu Ghraib – New classified documents implicate U.S. forces in rape and sodomy of Iraqi prisoners (be warned that this is a very graphic read).

Anyway, where were we? Oh, yes…

This time it’s different; it’s not just chatter. We have clear intelligence of a specific threat!

Go In. Stay In. Tune Out.

Comments – Comments, permalinks and all that jazz are planned, but they’ll take time and cash – two things in very short supply at the moment. In the meantime, perhaps we can squeeze in a few manual entries (or maybe just take control of the Usenet group alt.irony). Today, I have this comment emailed in by Andrew H:

I could not agree more that the terror threat in the US yesterday is blatant electioneering. This was the first thing I thought when I saw the news yesterday. There are only so many times that the Bush team can cry “Wolf!” before people catch on. My prediction will be that he is saving his last call of “Wolf!” for late October. Despite the threat I am going to the bank to get some cash out. If you don’t hear from me in the next few days….

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Date
20040803
Riding High on Blogdex
Time
10:08
How to be creative. I have my own tip here; try not to clench your brain. Give it room to move. And go easy on the stimulants.

From the peeps what brung you Subservient ChickenSubservient President! (Hint: ask him to curl up and die.)

Operation Give is getting screwed by Atlas Lines.

Sorry, I don’t feel like playing today.

Bush staff demand to know race of photographer before permission to photograph Dick Cheney is granted. I don’t see the big problem here. One, we know what a terrorist looks like, so what harm can it do to check for towel-headedness? Two, sometimes it’s hard to tell the difference between a camera and a rocket launcher.

A message from White House West: Americans must be able to trust the facts in political ads. Every voter has the right to truthful advertising. Free speech is no defense to massive, purposeful fraud.

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Date
20040803
Compare and Contrast
Time
10:11
We must crack down on Al Qaeda!

We must stop the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction!

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Date
20040803
Flash Thingies
Time
10:15
Here you go; this should keep you busy for a while.

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Date
20040803
Scam Alerts
Time
10:17
ZDNet – Criminal gangs blackmail Web users with porn threat: While criminal gangs are more widely associated with threatening denial of service attacks unless they get a kickback of thousands of pounds, it seems some are taking a more small-scale approach to extortion: now average PC users are being targeted. Instead of £50,000, the criminals are making demands by email of a mere £50. Unless they’re paid off, they threaten to tell the police about the child pornography they’ve installed on your machine.

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Date
20040803
OK, So I’m a Star Wars Geek
Time
10:32
Star Wars Art by Ralph McQuarrie (link va Cynical-C Blog.)

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Date
20040803
Is Richard Desmond a Pornographer?
Time
12:02
Richard Desmond is feeling cheeky. Normally he does his best to avoid letting OK! readers in on his seedier side, but now he’s entering the Lad’s Mag race with a new title… KO!

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Date
20040803
RWCs
Time
13:02
1. How can you possibly argue with inspired lyrics like these?

2. James Broadwater has been duped by Ali G, and he’s not happy about it. There’s an excellent post at onegoodmove.org with everything you need to know, so there’s no need to repeat it all here. (Oh, but you may also wish to read this interview with the great man.)

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Date
20040803
The Political Weblog Movement
Time
13:41
Some exciting developments over at the Alan Milburn blog. Go, Mike, go!

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Date
20040804
South West Trains
Time
09:45
I must be cursed or blessed or something…

16:00 – Depart office for 6pm meeting in Westminster. Departure time gives me close to an hour’s grace.

16:17 – Guildford to Waterloo service delayed at the station due to reported “flooding in Earlsfield.”

16:25 – Train leaves station

17:15 – After nearly and hour of stop-start-stop-stop-stop-start, the train terminates at an unscheduled stop at Surbiton. The guard has to walk along the train to tell us to get out, because the tannoy is broken. (Obviously, this was not connected to the reported flooding at Earlsfield; it was just one of those crappy trains built in 1968 or so that SWT still relies on for regular services.)

17:20 – Station manager refuses to issue me with more than one complaint form, so I walk up and down the platform with it telling people in groups what it is and why they should use it.

17:25 – Depart Surbiton on hot and crowded all-stops service with no toilets. One passenger with a young child found this out the hard way.

17:35 – Stop-start-stop-stop-stop-stop-stop-stop-start. Driver very vague about cause of delay, which is now being reported as “a localised electrical disturbance.” He states that from Wimbledon onwards it will take a minimum of 30 mins just to reach Clapham Junction. It’s pretty obvious from what’s going on that it would take an extra 20 minutes minimum to reach Waterloo, but this isn’t mentioned. That the London Underground will honour SWT tickets is, but the actual option of proceeding to Waterloo or your chosen destination in London via the Underground is not specified as such. A few passengers and I get together and start talking out loud about our options and decide that the best idea would be to abandon ship at Wimbledon.

17:45 – Heat unbearable by now. Not feeling well at all.

17:55 – Arrive Wimbledon. A mass exodus for the Underground service ensues.

18:35 – Arrive Westminster via the District Line – announcements are being made that Waterloo Underground is closed.

18:36 – Jubilee Line entrances being closed off just to stop anybody getting any bright ideas. It is suggested that passengers continue their journey “above ground” (i.e. – walk).

18:37 – Departing Westminster station, all hell breaks loose. A loud alarm is sounding; an announcer tells us to leave the station immediately. Signs with flashing lights read: Emergency – Do Not Enter. We’re in a state of heightened readiness, so somebody had to say it; “Oh my God, is there a gas attack?”

18:50 – Almost an hour late, but counting myself lucky that I made Westminster at all, I attend my meeting.

19:50 – Meeting ends.

20:00 – Jubilee Line only just returning to service. Signs state that next train is due in a 1 minute; it takes 10.

20:10 – Waterloo is a mess. I have no desire to get on one of the few very crowded trains leaving for Guildford and get back on the stop-start ride of a lifetime, so I chill for an hour.

21:20 – Depart Waterloo for Portsmouth ‘express’ service.

21:40 – Arrive Clapham Junction (normally about 5 mins from Waterloo on a bad day).

22:00 – It is reported over the (working) tannoy of our (modern) train that the two rear toilets are out of order, but the two forward toilets are in working order. A passenger next to me attempts to take advantage of this good fortune – and returns to report that the forward toilets – and the sinks – are overflowing with sewage.

22:30 – Guildford. Home at last. Somewhat comforted by the robot voice apologising for the delays, but felling very rough indeed.

Thank you, South West Trains, for yet another pleasant journey and the usual effort put into serving and advising passengers during times of difficulty.

UPDATE – Ride a bike? Use the trains? Then you’ll be interested in this leaked SWT document.

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Date
20040804
The War on Terror
Time
09:50
Independent – Terror alert: how four-year-old information was transformed into clear and present danger: The Bush administration was forced into the embarrassing admission yesterday that “new” intelligence about al-Qa’ida’s plans to attack US financial institutions – information that led to an official alert and a slew of fresh security measures – was up to four years old and predated the 11 September attacks.

Still, we’re busy making hay while the sun shines over here in the UK…

Independent – Police seize 13 men in terror raids across UK: Scotland Yard said the arrests formed part of “inquiries by security services into alleged international terrorism” and that they were part of a “pre-planned, intelligence-led operation”. It is understood the intelligence came from MI5. The timing of the raids was brought forward in the wake of the publicity over the perceived threat to US financial institutions, although the arrests were not connected with that threat.

Guardian – Home Office draws up tighter terrorism laws: The overhaul of the the anti-terror laws is being considered as American banks in London step up security after the discovery of detailed but dated plans for al-Qaida attacks in the US and Britain. The Home Office said no specific threat had emerged about Britain, adding: “We are maintaining a state of heightened readiness in the UK.” The new counter-terror package is expected to spark sharp criticism from civil liberties groups, who will be dismayed that Mr Blunkett has not used the opportunity to replace his emergency executive detention powers with realistic alternatives.

UPDATE – More on this latest round of arrests from The UK Today.

Oh, and if you’re new to Bloggerheads, you may have missed yesterday’s bloggage on the subject of terror and torture.

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Date
20040804
The Bush Administration
Time
09:54
“I want, and every President must have, the best, unbiased, unvarnished assessment of America’s intelligence professionals.” – George W. Bush, August 2, 2004

It’s a bit ‘king late for that isn’t it? Not that they’re going to get it or anything…

Independent – Bush agrees to independent US spy chief: Many specialists have warned that if the post were part of the White House bureaucracy, it would only increase the risk of intelligence being politicised ­ precisely what critics say happened in the debacle of Iraq and its non-existent weapons of mass destruction… Although the new director will technically not have cabinet rank, he will be named by the President and be subject to approval by the Senate.

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Date
20040804
Page 3 – Words of Wisdom
Time
10:01
Monday, August 2 – Nikkala (22, from Middlesex) gets her cha-chas out and expresses her shock over seaside resorts reportedly having the highest teenage pregnancy rates in the country. She says: “No one loves a wild party on the beach more than me, but these figures show youngsters must think twice before they put away too much booze.”

Wednesday, August 4 – Nicola T (22, from London) is excited about a new book giving tips on sex in the office. She says: “This book should go down a treat as us Brits love to spice up our work life. Everyone flirts at some stage and no one can deny it brightens up the day. I can’t see anything wrong with a quick nookie break.”

Read more about brightening up the day for others in your place of work.

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Date
20040804
Video
Time
10:05
Team America is headed your way. Matt Drudge has a few calm words to say about it.

The producers (who you may well be familiar with) have said: “We dont want people thinking we are in on the Fahrenheit 9/11 bandwagon. Everyone should be afraid of this movie.”

But it seems to me that some people have more to worry about than others

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Date
20040804
The Political Weblog Movement
Time
10:12
Mike is getting closer to an actual meeting with his chosen MP, Alan Milburn. You can help by going to his site and making a comment on any post. Show them how feedback works, people.

Rob has reported similar progress with Sarah Teather. I’ve armed him with an amended version of the PowerPoint presentation on MPs, Weblogs and Search Engines that I presented to a group of Labour MPs a few months back. (Incidentally, that presentation had to be rushed because of the good people at South West Trains. One has to wonder if there isn’t some kind of massive conspiracy going on…)

And today we have a new proxy-blog for Frank Dobson.

I’m going to tone down the whole ‘stalking’ thing so this healthy trend continues. (Yup, here it is. Many thanks to Rob D and Shane for their valuable input.)

I’m also working on something pretty significant in the background. I’ll tell you what I can, when I can.

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Date
20040804
The Political Weblog Movement
Time
11:23
Wow. Thank you. I’m touched. (But it was only harmless flirting. Really brightened my day.)

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Date
20040804
The War on Stupid
Time
12:49
All Iraqis are terrorists! That’s why we had to fight to save them from terror, or start a new front on the War on Terror in Iraq, or, erm… No, I’m sorry – I’ll need some help on this one.

(Found via Atrios. You may want to make time to skim through the related comments thread. Oh, and here’s a treat for those who ‘know what a terrorist looks like’…)

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Date
20040804
An American Election
Time
14:47
Yeeeeeee-hah! Cheers to Mirjam for the following heads-up…

Bands gather to stump against Bush: In an unprecedented series of concerts in nine swing states, more than 20 musical acts – including Bruce Springsteen, Pearl Jam and the Dixie Chicks – will perform fund-raising concerts one month before the Nov. 2 election in an effort to unseat President Bush.

Latest news and a full statement can be seen at the Bruce Spingsteen website and the official Act For Change website.

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Date
20040804
Needs Salt
Time
15:11
OMG! Thatcher’s dead! (Click here only if you find yourself in difficulty.)

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Date
20040804
Matters Political
Time
15:34
Bwahahahahahaha! And now, a message from the UK Independence Party (NSFW).

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Date
20040804
The Interweb
Time
16:24
I refer you to this bloggage from Fri, June 18, 2004: Fark.com has been removed from the ‘follow me’ links. This removal should not be taken lightly, as fark.com was one of the earliest inclusions and I cut my photoshopping teeth there. The reason it’s been removed? Let’s just say that I’m not happy with the way they choose their articles for the front page. The omissions are subtle, but deliberate. And The Sun gets plugged in a ha-ha-jolly way every other day. Goodbye, Fark. No more traffic from me.

Now we have this…

Fark.com sells their editorial, and the loyalty of their users: After trying to figure out a deal they told me that I could just buy the editorial. The cost? Like $300 to $400 for a story. I was shocked…. all this time I’ve been reading Fark.com it turns out that some percentage of the stories are paid for. Looking back on it I’m now sure the adult links are all paid for, as are the ifilm.com links. I feel like I can never trust Fark again. The stupid part about all this is that Fark.com could easily just put “Advertisement” by the stories and their readers would click them 2x as much just to support Fark. It is so dumb.

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Date
20040804
Only Interesting To Bloggers
Time
16:29
The Onion trundles on… CIA Asks Bush To Discontinue Blog

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Date
20040804
Riding High on Blogdex
Time
16:30
Credit card numbers, anyone?

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Date
20040804
Love Me, Love My Clients
Time
17:26
With so many new visitors today, I’d be a fool not to plug Giltsharp’s new and renewed short story competition. String a few words together about a Swiss Army Knife; win a Swiss Army Knife. Dead simple, really…

Here, let me start you off:

It was a dark and stormy night. I wasn’t looking forward to this emergency tracheotomy, because I had a splinter in my thumb and sesame seeds in my teeth…

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Date
20040804
The War on Stupid
Time
17:30
You may remember this laff-riot from the Labour camp that offers the public the chance to vote their favourite Tory out of a house or something like that.

The official Interweb response comes from The UK Today. (Yes, I did help out just a little bit, but Balders – who did the bulk of the research for Labour: I See Red – deserves full credit. And the harsh tax audit that’s headed his way.)

Tories in Turmoil – who would you vote for as the next leader of the Conservative Party?

I’m sure you’ll love the list of choices….

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Date
20040805
The War on Terror
Time
09:37
On Tuesday we were told by Scotland Yard that the arrests in Britain were not connected with the intelligence garnered from Pakistan that pre-dated 11/9 (please note correct formatting of date).

Today, Murdoch’s Times newspaper assures us that they were connected – and that the intelligence coming from Pakistan and the arrests have brought to light more information on the much-plugged ‘Heathrow terror plot’…

We also have the Bush administration assuring us that new intelligence was the reason for the latest round of alerts. We’re also told that this years-old information had recently been ‘revisited and recompiled’ as little as a year ago (which predates Blair’s ‘tanks into Heathrow’ stunt, but that’s by-the-by).

I’m inclined to agree with Balders, who said recently that: History has shown too many times that little faith should be placed in these announcements, and reality usually rears its head within a week or so.

But while other more responsible newspapers are sifting through this often vague and nearly always third-hand information before passing judgement, Murdoch’s Times (linked above) jumps straight into ‘foiled terror plot’ mode just as the whole country is recovering from a bout of healthy scepticism and facing a report from the all-party Joint Committee on Human Rights:

Scotsman – Scrap Jail-Without-Trial Terror Law, Blunkett Urged

Guardian – Blunkett faces revolt on internment

The Herald – Blunkett urged to abandon terror legislation

My advice? If you want an idea of what Blair’s trying to pull, turn first to The Sun, where the strings are there for all to see. Today, they report that “a terror suspect held in UK swoops was finalising plans to bomb Heathrow” and in case you’re in any doubt about this real-genuine-and-current threat, you need look no further than the front page where – in black and white – the reality we’re expected to see is outlined in three simple words – HEATHROW BOMB PLOT.

It brings to mind another front page from The Scum that resulted from vague intelligence and bold assertions when the government was in some difficulty and needed to sell their version of reality. It read; 45 MINS FROM DOOM!

Here’s the guts of it for me…

Most (if not all) of this information appears to be coming from the Pakistani government, who recently have been under pressure from the Bush administration to come up with the goods on Al Qaeda for reasons of political convenience

And the most useful thing they can provide for the Brits? Information suggesting that the threat to Heathrow is/was real.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: there’s a very big and very dirty story lurking behind all this Heathrow business… and Blair is more worried about it than he lets on.

UPDATE – An image for your consideration.

UPDATE – I’m terribly sorry, I appear to have been wrong. Pakistan has not been helping Blair out by feeding him politically useful intelligence (well, at least they deny it) – and Blair’s team hasn’t been making shit up and briefing journalists on it (well, at least they deny knowledge of any actual threat). Both of Mr Murdoch’s newspapers just happen to have taken it upon themselves today to paint a picture of a real and current threat and connect it with this ‘fresh’ intelligence from Pakistan….

BBC – Doubt over airport ‘terror plot’: Confusion surrounds claims that an al-Qaeda plan to attack Heathrow airport was foiled by British police… The Times newspaper said an attack was in its “final stages” but had been averted after UK police acted on Pakistani intelligence. But government officials in Pakistan deny any details were passed to the UK…. The Home Office said it would not comment on the details of intelligence, but confirmed that there had not been a specific threat.

But – and this is how the magic time machine works – if I bring up the subject of the Heathrow stunt in 6 months time, the answer from any ardent supporter of the government will be; “Of course the threat on Heathrow was real – they arrested 13 people and found all sorts of plans and photos on a laptop!”

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Date
20040805
Inneresting
Time
09:41
“What do I have to do? Draw you a bloody diagram?” (Link via Ultimate Insult.)

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Date
20040805
An American Election
Time
09:44
Bruce Springsteen – Chords For Change: I don’t think John Kerry and John Edwards have all the answers. I do believe they are sincerely interested in asking the right questions and working their way toward honest solutions. They understand that we need an administration that places a priority on fairness, curiosity, openness, humility, concern for all America’s citizens, courage and faith. People have different notions of these values, and they live them out in different ways. I’ve tried to sing about some of them in my songs. But I have my own ideas about what they mean, too. That is why I plan to join with many fellow artists, including the Dave Matthews Band, Pearl Jam, R.E.M., the Dixie Chicks, Jurassic 5, James Taylor and Jackson Browne, in touring the country this October. We will be performing under the umbrella of a new group called Vote for Change. Our goal is to change the direction of the government and change the current administration come November.

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Date
20040805
Humanity
Time
10:05
Boy, all of this ‘current and specific’ terror intelligence has come at a good time, hasn’t it?

Another thing it does is that is eases the minds of those who may just worry about piffling matter like human rights…

Independent – Father demands release of his British son after claims of torture at Guantanamo Bay: A 115-page dossier, Detention in Afghanistan and Guantanamo, produced by the lawyers of three of the recently released British men, said inmates had been shackled, punched, kicked, hooded and deprived of sleep. Amnesty International condemned the treatment, which drew comparisons with Iraq’s notorious Abu Ghraib prison where inmates were ritually humiliated. British Government agencies were accused of complicity.

Torygraph – Foreign Office denies ignoring complaints: The Government has denied ignoring complaints by three British former Guantanamo Bay detainees who claim that they were beaten and abused at the prison camp.

Yes. Our government and the military do everything it can to act responsibly in such matters.

The same goes for the US, who assure us that they’re also (finally) taking ‘appropriate’ action regarding detainees in Guantanamo, but lets us know that these are really, really bad people without pausing for ‘king breath.

Oh, and Abu Ghraib? It was all a bit of fun and Lynndie England was a bad apple is the picture being painted by Murdoch’s New York Post. Please note that this article makes no mention of the response by the defence (in other words, they report some things, and you decide on the basis of that information and that information alone)….

Scotsman – Lynndie Made Illicit Visits to Prison Abuse Block: The prosecution’s case has been aimed at rebutting a defence claim that England was acting on orders from higher-ups to break down prisoners for questioning…Defence lawyer Rick Hernandez contends the government is trying to shift its responsibility to a lowly private for a scandal that has stirred outrage in the Arab world. But the prosecution’s case is flawed, he said, because investigators didn’t look into allegations “at other camps where my client has never been. … All the information out there indicates it is a systematic problem.”

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Date
20040805
Updates
Time
10:05
More later. Meetings. Bleh. In the meantime, do consider giving Tories in Turmoil a plug. I’d like it to to be the top search result come Monday.

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Date
20040805
The Political Weblog Movement
Time
10:57
Things are really rolling now… today we have a proxy blog for David Lepper and a proxy blog for Keith Vaz. I urge you to visit both (and make an encouraging comment if you’re so inclined). Both blogs have now been added to the front-page navbar and to the How To Run a ‘Proxy’ Weblog on Behalf of Your MP page.

For proxy bloggers due to meet with their chosen MPs… it may pay to point out that they can if they wish – though this is bare bones design and not quite as integrated as it could be – integrate a (free) Blogger weblog into their current website like Lynne Featherstone has done.

UPDATE – Don’t forget that the new proxy blog for Frank Dobson still needs your love-juices. There were some extremely useful comments made at the Alan Milburn blog, so thanks for that. Oh, and the plan to attend David Lepper’s next surgery (this Friday) shows a glorious level of commitment. This is all very encouraging.

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Date
20040805
Advertising Genius
Time
12:08
Best. Product. Name. Ever. (Link via ScaryDuck.)

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Date
20040805
Photoshopping
Time
13:00
This is top banana and most woo-some.

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Date
20040805
Consume!
Time
13:28
Not up to this or this? Can’t even handle something as simple as this?

Then you need this!

(Haven’t lost my touch as a copywriter, have I?)

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Date
20040805
Photoshopping
Time
13:50
A treat for photoshoppers – a huge collection of movie posters.

UPDATE – Heh. Couldn’t stop myself. It’s a bit choppy, but only because I have another bloody meeting to go to. (Posted to B3ta.)

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Date
20040805
Normal People
Time
14:33
Tch. I’m so childish. (Please note the care he has taken in formatting his email address. Link via ScaryDuck.)

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Date
20040805
Established Media
Time
14:54
Pfft! Bygones….

The Register – Victim not killer owned ‘murder manual’ game: The copy of the computer game Manhunt that was discovered during the investigation into the murder of a 14-year-old boy was not the possession of the killer but the victim, it has emerged.

Oh well. They managed to work up a jolly good froth and sell a few papers. That’s got to count for something…

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Date
20040805
Flash Music Video
Time
15:06
Radiohead’s Creep – it’s a lovely build and a beautiful finish. Flash developers will love the intro and credits. (Well, hacks and newbies like me, will…)

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Date
20040806
The War on Terror
Time
10:14
Yes, it’s true. Because I suspect my government and the US government of manipulating the terrorist threat with the help of Rupert Murdoch’s media empire, I don’t believe that threat exists. And because I considered the invasion of Iraq to be rash and illegal, I love Saddam and want to hug & kiss and squeeze him until our bodily fluids mix and I can have his babies.

Well, Abu Musa al-Hindi appears to be real, and these connections appear to be damning, but I’m sure you’ll pardon me for questioning the following:

The Times today breezes right over denials from government officials in Pakistan that intelligence regarding Heathrow was shared with the UK (“Pakistan’s interior minister Faisal Saleh Hayyat later said that the UK authorities had not received information from Pakistan”) and instead praises them for their help in this editorial and goes live with this…

Times – Manhunt as five al-Qaeda militants evade police: A Pakistani intelligence official said Mr Khan told them how he visited Finsbury Park mosque during his time in Britain and met the radical cleric Abu Hamza whose extradition is being sought by the US.

Khan (Khaaaaaaaaaaan!) is of course the man who was arrested in Pakistan, so is not part of the recent round of arrests in the UK, but it’s all happening at the same time and there are so many foreign names to deal with, I doubt anybody know or cares about that. Especially not The Sun who – as you might expect – are all over the Hamza connection and not above linking it to the phantom Heathrow plot from paragraph one….

The Sun – Hamza linked to bomb plot: Preacher of hate Abu Hamza was sensationally linked to the al-Qaeda suspect behind the Heathrow bomb plot yesterday. Hook-handed Hamza had several meetings with terrorist “postman” Mohammed Naeem Noor Khan… The computer expert’s capture led to arrests of 12 terror suspects across Britain on Tuesday.

Today’s bold editorial is even better: The man, codename Bilal, was arrested in the swoop which foiled a plot to attack Heathrow. He had met Hamza several times in London — and you can bet it wasn’t to talk about Arsenal’s back four or who’d win the Derby. Let’s now hear no more nonsense from those who pleaded for Hamza’s “human rights” to be respected.

Let’s skip over the human rights issue and the Heathrow matter for a moment take a look at the timing of these arrests…

Here’s a repeat from Wednesday’s Independent newspaper: Scotland Yard said the arrests formed part of “inquiries by security services into alleged international terrorism” and that they were part of a “pre-planned, intelligence-led operation”. It is understood the intelligence came from MI5. The timing of the raids was brought forward in the wake of the publicity over the perceived threat to US financial institutions, although the arrests were not connected with that threat.

The Times today chooses to present this somewhat differently: The official said that the US had been interested in Bilal “for some time”. British security sources refused to say last night why he had not been picked up earlier.

My guess would be that they had a shifting group with some more elusive members and were doing the sensible thing; monitoring the threat, gathering information, and waiting for the right time to make arrests so they could capture as many suspected cell members as possible and maybe even (God forbid) come up with some actual evidence here and there. Bush’s long overdue, but much hurried and politically-motivated push in Pakistan f**ked that up, which is why we have a manhunt on our hands (much to the joy of the Daily Mail, who get one Manhunt! story that’s so sensational, it’s sure to take people’s minds off their role this Manhunt! story.

*cough*

Human rights…

Stalking David Blunkett brings us this Sun sidebar that you may have missed amongst yesterday’s linkage: Peers and MPs last night infuriated David Blunkett by condemning his anti-terror laws as a breach of human rights. Post-9/11 measures to net Muslim extremists were branded racist in an all-party committee report. It said they breach rights of all Muslims and should be torn up. Mr Blunkett denounced the findings. A close aide to the Home Secretary said “The world changed after the al-Qaeda attacks on the twin towers yet some people don’t seem to have grasped this. The most important thing now is to protect British citizens.”

Hmmm. So, human rights for us, but not for all? Sounds awfully familiar…

BBC – UK troops ‘beat Iraqi to death’: Rabinder Singh QC, appearing for the Iraqis in the six test cases, told the judges European human rights laws, which protect the right to life and freedom from torture or inhuman and degrading treatment, applied to troops in Iraq and the government was obliged to investigate. But lawyers for Defence Secretary Geoff Hoon say the Human Rights Act, which incorporates the European Convention on Human Rights into UK domestic law, can only be applied inside UK territory.

At this stage, I feel compelled to remind you once more that my objection to our attack on the wrong country and the use of the terrorist threat as a propaganda device to sell the invasion to the public does not mean that I deny there is any terrorist threat. In fact, if anything, Iraq has proved to be one of Al Qaeda’s greatest victories.

The abuse of the terror threat by the US government to pursue a totally unrelated and greed-driven agenda has provided Al Qaeda not only with a great deal of sympathy in some quarters, but a massive and largely unregulated playground in the Middle East that may soon see the introduction of martial law in the new, ‘free’ Iraq. The issue has also effectively split the United States in two.

At home, our role in the invasion of Iraq and Blair’s attempt to spin and sell it via manipulation of the terrorist threat means that it is the terrorists’ agenda, not his own, that now shapes his foreign and domestic policy (we pissed off a lot of people by siding with the US when we could very well have prevented the invasion and allowed the inspectors more time merely by sticking to our guns – and it reached the stage long ago that Blair could not drive forward new policies because of ongoing disquiet about Iraq).

It’s also compromising our justice system. And Bush’s continued use of terror as a trump-card (or ‘Keep Out of Jail Free’ card) now appears to be interfering with our attempts to monitor and contain actual threats. The question you have to ask is; is this making us any safer?

Which brings us back to Heathrow… and another question.

Independent – A plot, or not? Why Heathrow bomb plan was a media dream: It began with tales of a “terror alert in US and Britain” and culminated in a “plot to bomb Heathrow”. In the past few days anyone following the American and British media or listening to US security chiefs would be in little doubt the two countries were facing an imminent attack by al-Qa’ida. New information is, however, emerging that calls into doubt the level of threat. Senior British counter-terrorist sources yesterday denied they had found any specific plot to attack Heathrow or any other British airport.

Blair was very careful not to lie outright about the Iraq/terror connection (that didn’t exist), but he used the word ‘terror’ and Iraq’ or ‘terror’ and ‘Saddam’ or ‘terror’ and ‘weapons of mass destruction’ in the same sentence more times that I can count. This careful and deliberately proximal use of key phrases and concepts painted a false – and useful – picture.

Another picture is being painted right in front of us. The keywords are ‘terror’ and ‘Heathrow’ and ‘real’… why?

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Date
20040806
The Political Weblog Movement
Time
10:25
Mike (of the Alan Milburn proxy blog) has managed to get a nibble out of a local councillor via this discussion forum. He also reports that this post is only one minor technicality away from being an actual post from his MP.

You may also wish to read Ivan’s post on his personal blog, where he outlines the genesis of the proxy blog for David Lepper.

This is a nice and cuddly blog in keeping with the now-fluffier Blog Your MP campaign, but Ivan has also started another weblog in parallel. …

For David Blunkett, there will be no mercy.

And Balders? Balders has gone all-out and started weblogs for all three MPS in Barnsley: Michael Clapham, Eris Illsley and Jeff Ennis. At the very least, one man running three blogs in tandem (as well as his own) should prove how easy it is.

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Date
20040806
George W. Bush
Time
10:43
Bwahahahahahahahaha!

Independent – Tongue-twisted Bush is bent on self-harm: Even by the previous standards of Bushisms, this was one for the ages. Signing into law a new $417bn (£229bn) defence spending bill, the famously tongue-twisted 43rd President of the United States solemnly declared yesterday that his administration “will never stop thinking about new ways to harm our country and our people”. The gaffe came as President George Bush was warming to his favourite theme of the terrorist threat faced by the US. “Our enemies are innovative and resourceful, and so are we,” he said. “They never stop thinking about new ways to harm our country and our people, and neither do we.”

More Bushism fun here.

In other news, one can only wonder what the mother of this baby was thinking….

UPDATE – A little somthing extra for you… They Knew: Despite the whitewash, we now know that the Bush administration was warned before the war that its Iraq claims were weak.

Oh, and you may want to check out PoliticalStrikes.com, (where I found this little number).

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Date
20040806
It’s War! It’s Legal! It’s…. oh s**t!
Time
10:50
North Korea’s nuclear sub capability exists thanks to the assistance of Sun Myung Moon, the well-known Republican supporter, owner of the Washington Times and all-round religious nutbag.

While we’re on the subject, you may also wish to read about the ‘scrap metal’ being shipped out of Iraq.

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Date
20040806
Opportunities
Time
11:01
Sorry, no fun links today. I’m saving myself. Party. London. Tonight. Be there.

UPDATE – Oh, go on then…. take a pot-shot at a pigeon or two if you must.

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Date
20040806
The Political Weblog Movement
Time
15:09
Bill Thompson – The revolution will not be blogged.

Apart from the joy of the rip-off headline, this article is worth reading purely for the enjoyment of watching a man present every almost every clue available and still fail to come up with the obvious conclusion.

Perhaps Bill’s distaste for weblogs is causing a blind spot (you may remember him asking this time last year if it was all over for blogs).

Perhaps Bill read this report on the report and not the report itself.

No matter – let’s get to the meat….

In this article, Bill Thompson commits the following sins:

- He makes the false claim (often bandied about) that blogs take a lot of work. They don’t. They require a lot of commitment. There is a difference.

- He points out that the development of weblogs has been slow because “they appear to require more technical knowledge than a website built by a constituency activist” – without bothering to point out that they actually don’t.

- He acknowledges the issues of accountability and transparency and how blogs can promote same, but ignores the potential value of this in re-engaging a cynical electorate.

- He acknowledges that it’s not the technology that’s really at work here, but the capacity to engage driven by a willingness to do so – but he then dismisses the potential of this on the basis that it’s foolhardy to place too much faith in technology alone (I’m still trying to work that one out).

- He also notes that some MPs will fear accountability and transparency and/or shun this level of engagement. Quite right. But he completely ignores the rise in personal publication (which he dismisses as noise pollution) and what role this plays now and is going to play in the future. (I would not describe a blog or blog-driven/supported campaign that’s the top search result for an MP’s name or a high-level government campaign to be “absorbed into the general flow of net traffic”, would you?)

Finally, it’s worth taking a look at what he considers to be the difference between his early website for Anne Campbell and a weblog; the former boasted “no trackback, no comments or feedback” (I have none of these – is this not a blog then?)… and* “the content was mostly press release-style information.” Then take a look at Bill Thompson’s blog, where he only ever posts articles that he was writing for the BBC anyway (one wonders where he gets the idea that blogs are a lot of work).

The potential is still there for weblogs to further contribute to political discourse. If all goes well, they may very well shape it in subtle but positive ways.

But in these early days, there are also dangers. These dangers are as follows:

1 – That not enough MPs will fail to understand the value of weblogs before…

2 – A top-driven campaign to exploit them in the wrong way fails miserably, resulting in…

3 – Most MPs being convinced that weblogs are of no use.

Bill Thompson is contributing to Factor 1 with this witless piece. The only thing he brings to the debate is a less-than-helpful mix of prejudice and ignorance. I hope he’ll pardon this trackbackless blogger for saying he should pull his fucking head in.

[UPDATE – *Actually, he was right on this point. It took me far too long to get comments etc. going on this site, because I was too busy building blogs for other people like Tom Watson and Boris Johnson. IMO, for a while, in the very early days, blogs could still be blogs without comments, but this ended as conversation technology became widely accessible. ‘Witless’ etc. was a bit harsh, too. My bad. Cheers, Bill.]

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Date
20040807
Appeals
Time
15:53
The Circle Line Party was grrrrreat. I may report in full on Monday, but for now I have a favour to ask on behalf of one person who had a not-so-great time:

If anyone who went to the Circle Line Party witnessed the arrest of the gentleman in the green t-shirt (or the exchange with the police officer that preceded it) at or around 8.50pm at Sloane Square station, please get in touch with me via my main email address:

manic at bloggerheads DOT com

It seems the police are making some quite ridiculous claims, so we’ll need a few witnesses to set things straight. (And, yes, someone is already chasing up the CCTV footage.)

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Date
20040809
The War on Terror
Time
10:47
Your questions answered…

Were the Pakistan arrests linked to the London raids?: Yes. MI5 had been investigating Mr Khan for some months and had several of his contacts in Britain under surveillance, including Bilal. When details of Mr Khan’s arrest was made public, the police were forced to arrest the suspected cell members in the UK.

A shorter version of this answer reads: Yes. Whoops.

#(Did the Bush Administration Burn a Key al-Qaeda Double Agent?: The announcement of Khan’s name forced the British to arrest 12 members of an al-Qaeda cell prematurely, before they had finished gathering the necessary evidence against them via Khan. Apparently they feared that the cell members would scatter as soon as they saw that Khan had been compromised. (They would have known he was a double agent, since they got emails from him Sunday and Monday!) One of the twelve has already had to be released for lack of evidence, a further fall-out of the Bush SNAFU.

A shorter version of this answer reads: Yes. Whoops.

Is Blunkett really mad with the Americans about this?: David Blunkett has issued a barely coded rebuke to President George Bush for issuing a terror alert that resulted in “ridicule”. The Home Secretary went on the offensive to explain why Britain did not follow suit when the US administration issued a warning on information that turned out to be four years old.

A shorter version of this answer reads: Yes. But only because they made him look stupid.

Have the Bush administration learned anything from this?: Washington reacted by disclosing still more data…. An unnamed military official told Time that there were benefits to spreading panic in terrorist ranks. “People get flushed out and when that happens other people get nervous. As they start to move, they talk and we hear them. It’s like hunting birds: you scare ‘em up, they run then you shoot them.”

A shorter version of this answer reads: No. Duh.

Incidentally, new spin is due from Washington any day now – and could well take hold. The reason Al Qaeda is being targeted in the run-up to the election is because they plan to strike during that election.

Makes perfect sense, doesn’t it? The only thing that’s hard to explain is why this reason wasn’t mentioned before now. Oh, and why Osama bin Laden became not-so-much-a-priority-as-Saddam for close to two bloody years.

Heathrow…

Only the Moonie Times is hanging on to scraps of this, but it’s worth noting how the story (almost) grew legs via Reuters and Bloomberg. Were there a little more panic and a little less healthy scepticism, it could well have become reality by this morning. Not that it isn’t for about a million or so devoted Scum readers, who are unlikely to see any form of correction or retraction…

Bloomberg – Al-Qaeda’s U.K. Leader Planned Heathrow Attack, Times Reports: A senior al-Qaeda member in the U.K., alleged to have been in the final stages of planning an attack on London’s Heathrow airport, has been arrested by British police, the London-based Times reported, citing unidentified intelligence officials in Pakistan.

Reuters – Terror detainee targeted Heathrow: A senior al Qaeda figure planning to attack Heathrow airport was among 12 terrorism suspects arrested in Britain two days ago, newspapers report. None of the papers quoted a named source and all differed in details, but most linked the arrests with recent swoops in Pakistan and this week’s alert in New York and Washington.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040809
RWCs
Time
10:49
For the least week or so, Blogdex has been close-to-overwhelmed by a variety of posts, articles and plugs for books/sites/ads that question John Kerry’s military service record in Vietnam. The latest question that has the wingnuts foaming at the mouth is “Was Kerry in Cambodia?” – and of course, if they can prove that, they can declare victory. Kerry wasn’t in a certain area of Vietnam when he says he was! And Bush wasn’t in a certain areas of Texas when he says he was!

See? They cancel each other out completely.

Another wonderful bit of balance comes to us in the form of the Swift Boat Veterans For Truth, who are meant to act as an antidote to the vile poison of the veterans who support John Kerrys’ hateful and unnecessary campaign to unseat that great world leader George W. Bush. You may want to read up on this ‘independent’ and ‘self motivated’ group. They certainly appear to have some interesting ties:

Salon.com – Smear Boat Veterans for Bush: The “swift boat” veterans attacking John Kerry’s war record are led by veteran right-wing operatives using the same vicious techniques they used against John McCain four years ago.

CHB – Anti-Kerry Vets Driven by Longtime GOP Operative, Bankrolled by Bush Cronies

More from Disinfopedia.

The final word I leave to R. H. Blanchard.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040809
Religion
Time
10:55
Unusual Churches and Cults reviews/blogs more whacked-out religions than you can poke a stick at. Including mine, which is nice.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040809
NSFW
Time
10:58
I hope they’re not serious….

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040809
Only Interesting To Bloggers
Time
10:59
Guardian – Forget the bloggers, it’s the vloggers showing the way on the internet ! You heard it here first, folks. The simple wish to communicate has been outmoded yet again by another sexy bit of tech! (Nice to see Steve get a plug, though…)

UPDATE – Try not to get too excited about MT Tabs.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040809
Funny
Time
11:01
Build a better Bush. Should keep you distracted for all of 10 seconds.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040809
It’s War! It’s Legal! It’s…. oh s**t!
Time
11:07
Martial law is on the way, government censorship is already happening, the death penalty has been reinstated, moderate cleric Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani is suffering from a life-threatening illness and arrest warrants have been issued for both Chalabis (the one who helped the US with the WMD claims and the one who’s presiding over the trial of Saddam Hussein).

At times like this I thank the Lord that this perilous step in the Middle East was taken with international cooperation that allowed us to leave behind a strong and renewed Iraq that rests on a solid foundation and is able to handle life’s little challenges.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040809
Circle Line Party III
Time
11:47
Circle Line Party III got a massive response (and this morning wakes up to find itself blogged), but it was obviously too crowded, and a decision had been reached (and spread through the party) that we were to split into two groups – but when we reached the Sloane Sq, the police were waiting.

I don’t know who talked to them about it, but the police seemed OK to let us just split into two groups and be on our merry way, but then the Undergound staff got involved, lost patience very quickly and insisted 1) that the train go nowhere until they decided on what to do and 2) that um, yes, we empty the train.

We don’t know what to do with it, so let’s just be rid of it.

The excuses I heard were technical problems and someone being ill on a train stuck behind ours (which wasn’t true).

So, there were all standing around doing nothing, not having fun, sweating a lot and pissing of commuters. This wasn’t part of the plan. So…

The only thing that got people off the train? A promise that came from somewhere that we had to let this train move on so we could be allowed to split up amongst the next ones. Partygoers trusted this and passed it on. I was one of them. (It needs to be noted that the train could not have been emptied without the partygoers organising this themselves.)

Mostly the authorities looked lost. Maybe they know how to deal with passive crowds (move along now, sir) or aggressive ones (resisting arrest, are we sir?) but not happy ones.

Anyway, we did as they asked and the result was a packed platform, but if we all kept our heads and stuck to the plan, half/some of us could get onto the next Circle Line (or even available) train to ease up pressure on this station (priority one), allow the trains behind us to proceed (priority two) and then get on with the party (priority three).

Only problem was, someone had decided the party was over. Suddenly trains were going through and not stopping. Past a *packed* platform, even at slow speed, this was pretty dodgy and getting dodgier with each passing train (a subdued but ugly ‘booo’ went up when the first Circle Line train did this).

Had we been allowed to split into two groups and proceed, there would have been no danger to anybody (and a much better experience for partygoers and commuters).

Whoever made the decision to stop the party (seemingly at near-to-all costs – at a station with a platform narrowed by building works) fucked up. And the platform only cleared as quickly as it did because there was a ‘pass it on’ distributed by partygoers about moving on, ‘wandering’ off and continuing at a specific time/location.

They couldn’t have evacuated the station without us. But they kept it closed for a further hour or so, just to look like they were doing something, I suppose. Or collect evidence for the attempted murder that took place (dun-dun-dahhhhhhh!).

One of the party-goers lost his footing and ended up putting his dirty, grubby hands on a policeman. This quickly turned into a claim that he had actually pushed him onto the tracks. When this (allegedly) happened, something like 200+ people were still on the platform, and nobody saw anything like this happen. (An arrest was made and CCTV footage is being sought, but we’re still looking for witnesses if you saw the exchange and/or arrest.)

The police and/or Underground staff caused the problems on that platform, and the only solutions (proposed and working) came from the partygoers themselves.

(Incidentally, if there’s ever a panic-causing situation on the Underground, they’d best pray for a few smart commuters being on hand to give some sensible advice. The tannoy system they have going can’t even be heard above the background noise of a *quiet* crowd and their staff’s crowd-handling skills ain’t worth shit.)

Happy news? The split had already started. There was a large group that had got off at Victoria and subsequently didn’t get stopped by some pigheaded jobsworth. This reformed into a party that proceeded happily in an anti-clockwise direction. Some people from the interrupted party stuck around outside Sloane Square to be hassled by a comically large police presence (which eventually dwindled to allow this party to proceed also). A group of us made our way to the whispered rendezvous and this chapter of the party renewed itself successfully and completed a full lap of the Circle Line in the traditional clockwise direction. Both train-based parties managed to meet up afterwards, and a fine time was had by all.

UPDATE – A short report from Geoff, who failed to see me not seeing him.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040809
The Political Weblog Movement
Time
11:49
A political weblog aggregator has just launched. So has a proxy-blog for Glenda Jackson.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040809
The War on Stupid
Time
13:34
Victory is ours! The zone is owned.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040809
The End of Democracy
Time
13:49
Some shenanigans of a hi-tech and low-tech variety for you to ponder on. To think of all that campaign money that’s just going to waste when the result has already been decided… makes you want to cry, doesn’t it?

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040809
Compare and Contrast
Time
16:02
Comparing the treatment of Khan and Krar should tell you just about everything you need to know about the Bush administration’s approach to terror (and the vital role the media plays).

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040809
Tony Blair
Time
16:36
BBC – Labour group urges new direction: “We did think Blair would…renew social democracy. We were wrong,” says Renewal’s next edition’s editorial. It adds: “Iraq is Blair’s poll tax, a… breach of trust, demonstration of arrogance and strategic blunder for which the party as a whole is paying.”

More from The UK Today.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040809
In The News
Time
17:01
You won’t be quite so calm when you realise that it’s recycled Prozac…

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040809
Inneresting
Time
17:32
I was trying to find/remember the name of an early arcade game when I stumbled upon this collector/dealer website and this fantastic arcade game from 1942.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040810
Page 3 – Words of Wisdom
Time
09:32
Thanks to lies and spin (plus something I like to call ‘selective transparency’) about BSE under the previous government and MMR and WMD under the current government, releasing a simple and safe vaccine has become problematic. At least, that’s the spin.

You read that right, folks. The government is telling us that the vaccine is totally safe, but they’re concerned that people won’t trust it because they lie so often. And if you find yourself doubting the army of doctors, experts and department heads that have come out of the woodwork in the last few days, then turn instead to the page you love most in the one newspaper you can trust:

One Page 3 of today’s super immunosuppressant Sun, Katie (19, from Liverpool, who is wearing a lovely pair of medical-issue panties and little else) says she understands parents’ concerns over the new five-in-one jab. She then goes on to say: “Tony Blair has done the right thing by publicly reassuring mums and dads. The experts seem to agree that the five-in-one jab is a positive step, so I think most people will put their faith in the Government.”

Must. Believe. Girl. With. Boobies.

Must. Place. Faith. In. Government.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040810
Only Interesting To Bloggers
Time
09:34
Guardian – The blog busters : Mighty corporations ignore the whispers on web diaries at their peril. Sean Hargrave reports on how the big brands are logging on to save face.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040810
The War on Terror
Time
10:01
London News review – Terrorism: how many warnings is too many?: Threatening people is precisely what (Bush is) doing. Terrorism’s the right word for it. An up-against-it President Bush is trying to scare the electorate into keeping the Republican Guard in charge. It’s disgraceful, really it is. Listen to how he measures his presidency by the “job” he has to do, leading the fight against terror: “We will stay there until the job is completed and our commanders on the ground tell us.” Bush has even started calling himself “the war president” – just listen to this amazing statement: “I wish it wasn’t this way. I wish I wasn’t the war president. Who in the heck wants to be a war president? I don’t.” You’ve got to tip your hat to his speech writers – that’s a particularly neat trick: affirming that Bush is “the war president” while suggesting that he is only such by force of circumstance. The same force of circumstance that is forcing Bush to remain at the helm until the “job is completed.” Which it won’t ever be because the War on Terror is unending. Brilliant.

Tom Tomorrow – Using the threat of terrorism to scare voters: all of September will be “National Preparedness Month”: Other September Surprises: a whole “educate the family” campaign, with kits available at various retailers; an in-school “Ready Deputy” duck-and-cover training program; and a website called Readykids.gov (not yet online), all launched in the first week. Brilliance. Tie the concept of Bush’s only winning issue to family and children. Unspoken, deniable implication: “vote for Bush if you want your kids to live.” Nice.

And of course it’s those of us pointing out the dangers of this ongoing manipulation of the terror threat that:

1 – Do not believe in the threat

2 – Cause people to lose trust in the government

3 – Make the threat worse

Heathrow…

The LNR piece links to this wonderful ‘bull-becomes-reality’ article:

rediff.com – Al Qaeda planned to attack Heathrow airport: Al Qaeda’s British cell planned to attack London’s Heathrow airport. This became clear after British agents arrested ‘Bilal,’ the man suspected of heading the Al Qaeda cell in Britain earlier this week.

Of course, it had only become ‘clear’ that this was the case after this ‘journalist’ had read an article in the Times, but to give it more credence he/she/it also references two articles in the Guardian and the New York Times – the only problem being that the former article makes no mention of Heathrow and the latter article only says: The leader of the House of Commons, Peter Hain, told British Broadcasting Corporation radio that those detained in London on Tuesday had been “important arrests.” But Mr. Hain declined to comment on reports in some publications that they had involved a plot against Heathrow Airport.

PS – When he says “some publications,” he really means “two publications owned by the same man that have willingly fed the public our lies since before we took power” – but this quote was obviously edited for reasons of space.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040810
Consume!
Time
10:06
Start ‘em young!

Incidentally, McDonalds recently started airing two minute educational commercials aimed at very young kiddies. You can make all the grown-up arguments you like about what the intentions are and how Ronald McDonald never says ‘hamburgers are good for you,’ but what a lot of people seem to be forgetting is that this is playing to two audiences:

1. Mum – Sees full message. Feels reassured about McDonalds. Stops writing angry letters.

2. Child – Sees; health + clown. Clown=McDonald’s. Therefore; McDonald’s=Health

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040810
Riding High on Blogdex
Time
10:20
More Kerry-bashing, plus:

Every issue of the Toronto Star from 1892-2001 in PDF format. Plus a search engine to help you find what you’re looking for. Other newspapers, please take note.

4 charged in Florida killings over Xbox. No doubt because the X-Box was evil. And the clothes. The clothes were evil, too.

Koko the gorilla calls for a dentist. Awwwww. That’s so cute, I forgot to ask why it’s been 20 years since her first full medical examination.

Psychologists try to learn how to spot a liar. Turns out liars have no reliable tell-tale signs. Conclusion? Anybody not showing any tell-tale signs is lying to you. And that includes you, you bastard.

UPDATE – Oh, I’m sorry. Did I skip over the Kerry-bashing? OK, here’s a link for you; one of the authors of this book is a hardcore Freeper.

Go and browse through the related freep threads before they’re pulled. (FreeRepublic tend to be rather gutless about things like this, and pull threads the moment their own poison starts to work against them.)

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040810
Only Interesting To Bloggers
Time
10:28
The Washington Post is having a best blog competition. Must be the season for them or something.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040810
Inneresting
Time
10:32
“Do Not Enter” signs from around the world.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040810
It’s War! It’s Legal! It’s Lovely!
Time
11:09
Reuters – Lynndie England abuse hearing halts: Lawyers for England renewed a request for top U.S. government and military officials, including Vice President Dick Cheney and Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld to be called to testify… (hearing officer Colonel Denise Arn) said she would rule on the additional witnesses and resume the hearing as soon as possible but gave no indication when that might be.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040810
George W. Bush
Time
11:19
Journalists laugh at Bush, to his face. The cracks are finally showing (mind you, the one in his skull has been visible from Day One).

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040810
Cool
Time
11:39
Cool website with nifty jingle. (Doesn’t work in Firefox, sorry.)

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040810
Circle Line Party III
Time
12:03
More reports, comments, pictures and video.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040810
Tony Blair’s Email
Time
16:27
I decided that enough was enough this afternoon and advised the two biggest abusers of not-Blair’s email address (i.e. the people who hammer it week-in, week-out) that they’ve been wasting their time these past 3-4 years. These are two Very Serious People that each take an opposing view on the Israel/Palestine question. I’m not looking forward to the replies, but at least the deed is done.

Peter Broderick is more of a problem. This is a man on the edge, with a unique view of the world. I’m not sure how well he’d cope with this particular reality. Still, the last email he sent was over a month ago, so perhaps he has finally switched medication….

From: Pete Broderick

To: clu@fco.gov.uk, kay.sweet@fco.gov.uk, marrena.marren@fco.gov.uk, paul.mowat@fco.gov.uk, tony-blair@prime-minister.co.uk

Subject: Health and safety

Date: 6/7/2004 9:25:11 am

Hi,

Questions have to be asked, of the like so fthe GMC, BMA, BMJ, UKCC, RCN, etc when it comes to the amount of hours junior doctors are expected to do over weekends, when from a friday to a Monday junior doctors are expected to be on call over one hundred hours at a stretch, leading to a situation where consultants can vend cocaine to the junior doctors.

This fee nominal lack of regard by the medical bodies, and their doctoring fee loss of fees proves that health and safety are not paramount in their agenda, but actuallly dragging the NHS into disrepute, with regards the Maastricht treaty and the social charter/chapter. Such an approach by the medical bodies is fostering a drug dependency culture, if it hadn’t happened last year I would have suggested that they would be offering amphetamines to the airforces of NATO, to try and take a few out, especially as TOP GUN has probably been repeated on TV recently.

AN NHS with a (w)holistic approach to healthcare and illness prevention would be far better than the current NHS that we have.

The Royal Arches of medicine, still do not support the principle of the NHS and would prefer healthcare to be more commercial, currently the Royal Arches, want the pharmacist to be a person, most NI holders see every week, and they have designs of a crazy paving to take you from being smacked by a medic the minute your born, into a home when you retire, so that your house goes to the owner of the home.

That’s just the way it is

Pete Broderick

Pls could could you actually try and stop these fifth columnists or do you need the help of those that give a shit?

UPDATE – No, I tell a lie. I just found this one that also explains his recent absence…

From: Pete Broderick

To: clu@fco.gov.uk, kay.sweet@fco.gov.uk, marrena.marren@fco.gov.uk, paul.mowat@fco.gov.uk, tony-blair@prime-minister.co.uk

Subject: Industrial espionage

Date: 23/7/2004 8:12:54 am

Hi,

Institute of Directors v CBI

Small retail outlets are being distributed

contaminated alcohol.

1980’s ID knocked out CBI and small business through

the Commercial poll tax.

On Wednesday I drank four cans of tennants super Bar

code 5010017046880 #10010000049/83 T4AA10D

They were contaminated with Prozac+.

This then linked with drink spiking that is going on

the pubs.

The distribution seems to coincide with when ITN’s

Patrick Hubbard concentrates on bINge dr inking.

If it goes unchecked other food sources might also be

targeted.

I have also to contact my local police on a seperate

matter, again there has been an attepmt to break into

my flat.

With Respect

Pete Broderick

And, as we all know by now, Pete may actually have been onto something about that Prozac.

UPDATE 2 – Oh dear, the account seems to be overloaded again… and now I’ve done a bit of a clean-up, some of the backlog is coming in – including at least 8 more emails from Mr Broderick. No matter. I’m sure they’ll keep until tomorrow. (Unless he’s rumbled yet another dastardly plot to poison our beer supply!)

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040811
Tony Blair’s Email
Time
09:30
After yesterday’s revelation from Mr Broderick:

…I drank four cans of tennants super Bar

code 5010017046880 #10010000049/83 T4AA10D

They were contaminated with Prozac+.

This then linked with drink spiking that is going on

the pubs.

Pooons got in touch with the following:

Reading the blog about Mr Broderick reminded me of a story a friend

in London told me a few years ago.

She was working as an alcohol counsellor, and the service she worked

for noticed that of all the drinkers they had on file, 90-odd percent

that died drank Tennants Super. The ones drinking Special Brew, etc

seemed to be fine.

A letter to the brewers garnered little response. Completely

unprovable sadly, but you should drop Mr B a line and suggest he

change his poison!

That’s all very interesting, but surely the proof of Mr B’s theory would be that these people died *happily*…

Besides, whatever Pete may or may not be dosed-up on certainly doesn’t appear to be hindering his problem-solving abilities:

From: Pete Broderick

To: uk@un.int , usa@un.int , tony-blair@prime-minister.co.uk , turkey@un.int , smillar@nato-pa.int , so2mr@arrc.nato.int , spain@un.int , slovakia@un.int , slovenia@un.int , romania@un.int , rusun@un.int , poland@un.int , portugal@un.int , president@kremlin.ru , president@whitehouse.gov , press@hq.nato.int , paul.mowat@fco.gov.uk , natodoc@hq.nato.int , netherlands@un.int , luxembourg@un.int , latvia@un.int , lithuania@un.int , italy@un.int , iceland@un.int , hungary@un.int , greece@un.int , france@un.int , estonia@un.int , dims-pia@hq-nato.int , dims.pia@hq-nato.int , delun@mfa.no , denmark@un.int , czechrepublic@un.int , bulgaria@un.int , canada@un.int , belgium@un.int , gerhard.schroeder@bundestag.de , germany@un.int , clu@fco.gov.uk

Subject: NATO & Expansion

Date: 29/7/2004 11:51:16 am

With Respect,

Hi,

Along with the political expansion of the Twenty seven

Countries of the RCN, has developed a geographical

progression, with the thawing of Tundra, in Siberia,

and Greenland.

Both pieces of land should be developed to be used by

NATO, in the first instance.

Denmark, for instance could be awarded 10% of the

contracts, on a home grown basis, with the other

member nations offering 3% each, ditto in Siberia, 10%

of the contracts designated by the Kremlin, and each

other NATO member responsible for approx 3% each.

NATO/RCN should look to Modify the name of the

organization, to include membership of Commenwealth

states, especially Australia/NZ. with the plans of the

PRC in mind, and Arab alliance, that is looking to

form allegiance, with regards the redevelopment of

Iraq.

This org. can then contract services in a professional

manner to the twenty eight bodies of the UN.

On a business basis, is also how professional

preachers have to be dealt with, as they show a

starkling lack of appreciation of patriotism.

Rapid Deployment should be a comprehensive issue, not

just in the resource deployment of troops, but also

assets from Procurement to competitive tenders, and

regional rejuvination.

Finally Sharon is looking to flood the Israeli army

with mercenary troops, a hidden message of his

DIASPORA comments ditto Saddam, his 8/8 posting to the

Iraqi UN Mission 2001, and his repeated emphasis in

the final few paragraphs, regarding aeroplanes.

Business will now look to contaminate every aspect of

the Madrid Treaty, from the bilateral talks, through

the multitrack process.

Again, With Respect

Pete Broderick

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040811
Compare and Contrast
Time
09:32
Michael Howard: “I’ve got my rights” is the verbal equivalent of two-fingers to authority. There is now a palpable sense of outrage that “so-called” human rights have tipped the balance of justice in favour of the criminal and the wrong-doer – rather than the victim and the law abider. The decline of responsibility and the proliferation of rights have left us in an ethical quagmire, which is undermining our fight against crime. The clear distinction between right and wrong has been lost in sociological mumbo-jumbo and politically correct nonsense.

Deborah Coles: “The death of a 14-year-old while in and custody of the state is shocking and highlights the dangerous consequences of locking up children. The Home Secretary can no longer resist the call for a public inquiry into the treatment of children by the criminal justice system. He must take action to address what is a serious and disturbing human rights issue� the death and suffering of children while in the custody of the state.”

(Image posted to B3ta.)

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040811
Riding High on Blogdex
Time
10:22
Look up.

Look down. (Note – all images leached from yannarthusbertrand.com)

Look out!

Everything else is Kerry-Kerry-Kerry… which I’d like to have a little chat about if that’s OK with you. The first thing you need to see is that this isn’t charting organically. This is a co-ordinated push of information. This article does worry me some – but what worries me more is where the link support is coming from. In case you haven’t noticed, almost every Kerry-bashing or Bush-supporting chart-topper on Blogdex begins its life (or its link support) at either Drudge or Instapundit. Hardly a natural groundswell.

Now, let’s compare this whole ‘question of service’ thing with the Bush AWOL question. The Torygraph has an interesting angle…

Telegraph – Nuanced? Kerry’s story just doesn’t add up: The point is, even if it were true, it fits the Bush narrative: he was a lackadaisical son of privilege who goofed around, drank too much, found Jesus, sobered up and got his life together. If you’ve got 30-year-old pictures of him dancing naked on a bar in Mexico when he was supposed to be back at the air base, so what? It’s compatible with the official version. That’s Bush: the bad stuff still fits the picture.

Bush is/was an idiot. Therefore it’s water off a duck’s back. Works for me. No need to mention that he’s the (now reluctant) War President who never faced a shot fired in anger (unless there’s some coke-deal-gone-wrong that we don’t know about).

Another comparison worth making is the number of witnesses that have come forward in this case. In Bush’s case, the AWOL question was national news, but the only positive ‘witness’ they could dig up was professional letter-writer William Campenni – who never actually saw anything. Kerry, on the other hand, has backers – and knockers – that have known him for years. FFS, at least someone remembers he was *there* – even if some right-wing activists (who just happen to have deep and long-standing Republican connections and just happen to enjoy Republican funding) wish to cast doubt and sling mud with what appears to be a pack of carefully-crafted lies.

Jim Rassman – John Kerry saved my life. Now his heroism is being questioned: Nobody asked me to join John’s campaign. Why would they? I am a Republican, and for more than 30 years I have largely voted for Republicans. I volunteered for his campaign because I have seen John Kerry in the worst of conditions. I know his character. I’ve witnessed his bravery and leadership under fire. And I truly know he will be a great commander in chief. Now, 35 years after the fact, some Republican-financed Swift Boat Veterans for Bush are suddenly lying about John Kerry’s service in Vietnam; they are calling him a traitor because he spoke out against the Nixon administration’s failed policies in Vietnam. Some of these Republican-sponsored veterans are the same ones who spoke out against John at the behest of the Nixon administration in 1971. But this time their attacks are more vicious, their lies cut deep and are directed not just at John Kerry, but at me and each of his crewmates as well. This hate-filled ad asserts that I was not under fire; it questions my words and Navy records. This smear campaign has been launched by people without decency, people who don’t understand the bond of those who serve in combat.

My advice is as it has always been. If a link on Blogdex raises an eyebrow, always look to see where the support comes from.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040811
Rupert ‘The Evil One’ Murdoch
Time
10:24
I really wish these people would do their research before rushing in with stuff like this….

—– Original Message —–

From: “Jeff Shakoor”

To: manic AT bloggerheads.com

Sent: Tuesday, August 10, 2004 7:38 PM

Subject: FOX TV seeking Star Wars families for “Trading Spouses”

–> My name is Jeff Shakoor. I’m a casting associate at Rocket Science Labs

–> here in Hollywood. We are currently producing the new hit reality show

–> “Trading Spouses” for FOX and are currently seeking a Star Wars family for

–> our second season. We were hoping you could be of some assistance in

–> helping us find this talented and interesting family. If you know of anyone

–> who might be interested could you please have them send the names and ages

–> of everyone in their family who would like to participate along with a photo

–> in jpeg format to jshakoor@rocketscience.com. All children must be five

–> years of age or older and all applicants must be legal US residents. If you

–> have any questions please feel free to contact us. The show airs Tuesdays

–> at eight on FOX. Thanks in advance for any help you could provide us.

–>

–> Jeffrey Shakoor

–> Rocket Science Labs

1. I’m not sure, but I think I’m supposed to leap up and say; “Me! Me! I’m interesting and talented!” and in the process forget to ask for money.

2. Trading Spouses? Was Wife Swap too hardcore, or do you perhaps have more interesting plans for that title?

3. Let me guess, you plan (ha ha ha) to swap the wives (ho ho ho) from a Star Wars (ha ha) and a Star Trek (ho ho) family. Oh, do stop, please. You’re killin’ me here…

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040811
Inneresting
Time
10:36
Take a look at some bloopers from Bewitched, then – while you’re in the mood – take a peek at who owns gladyskravitz.com

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Date
20040811
Consume!
Time
10:39
Get your face or photo onto a stamp without all that doing a great public service and dying malarkey.

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Date
20040811
Christianity Watch
Time
10:40
“Why are you helping me?”

I think I may have the answer to that question, but I’ll let you work it out for yourselves…

UPDATE – Jesusify your website with these fabbo linky-tract thingies. Highlights include the truth behind martial arts and rock music.

(Latter link via Ultimate Insult.)

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Date
20040811
The Big Intervention
Time
10:42
Independent – Blair faces vote of no-confidence over war: Labour activists are circulating a resolution of no confidence in Tony Blair for next month’s annual party conference because of a loss of trust in him over the war over Iraq.

This is exactly what The Big Intervention was designed to do/create/prompt. If you want to take advantage of this development, check out this update from The UK Today.

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Date
20040811
It’s War! And Somebody’s Telling Porkies!
Time
14:05
Hutton fails to find leak culprit shock! His ‘urgent’ investigation took 196 days to complete. And makes no findings whatsoever. And is followed by a two finger salute by Trevor Kavanagh of all people. It’s laughable.

But, hey… it’s six months down the track and the Olympics start in a day or two. Who’s going to care?

(Heads-up via Wibbler.)

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Date
20040812
The War on Terror
Time
10:28
Heads-up via this post at The UK Today….

Independent – Terror suspects lose detention challenge: Ten suspected terrorists detained in the UK without charge or trial today lost a Court of Appeal challenge to their internment. Most of the foreign nationals at the centre of the ruling in London have been held in prisons since 2001. Two of the ten have exercised their option to leave the UK rather than remain in detention. The men challenged a ruling of the Special Immigration Appeals Commission (SIAC) that Home Secretary David Blunkett had “sound material” to back up his decision that they were a risk to national security. Their lawyers had argued that evidence obtained by alleged torture of detainees in US camps should have been excluded by SIAC.

The Scotsman today has a few word from the men’s solicitor, Gareth Peirce: Ms Peirce pointed out that, while British citizens could not be locked up indefinitely, foreign nationals could be detained on mere suspicion of being a threat to national interests, which could include economic interests as well as security.

But that nice Mr Blunkett has assured us that he has used these (new) powers “sparingly and proportionately.” Basically, we should not be concerned about these draconian laws, because they’re only being used – most reluctantly – by people who are quite nice, really, and looking out for our best interests. It’s because the spectre of terror is so very, very scary that these only-very-slightly-scary measures are being taken.

We should also try not to be concerned about the following quote, also from Gareth Peirce: “It shows that we have completely lost our way in this country, legally and morally. We have international treaty obligations which prevent the use of evidence obtained by torture in any proceedings (but) what this judgment says by a two-to-one majority is that, if it is obtained by agents of another country and not procured or connived at by UK agents, it is usable without any restriction and there is no obligation on the secretary of state to inquire into the origins of it.”

We’ll get onto Blunkett’s bleating in a moment. In the meantime, it needs to pointed out that no statement he has made so far directly addresses the question of the rights and wrongs of evidence obtained by torture.

Independent- Evidence gained by torture allowed by British judges: From Lord Justice Laws’ judgement: ‘I am quite unable to see that any … principle prohibits the Secretary of State from relying … on evidence … which has or may have been obtained by torture by agencies of other states over which he has no powers of direction’

OK, let’s go to the bleating…

Independent – David Blunkett: Freedom from terrorist attack is also a human right – in which he claims that he’s protecting our human rights by ignoring theirs – but he’s also looking out for theirs by detaining them and not sending them home. As for comparisons between Belmarsh and Guantanamo? Pshaw! Absurd! They use orange jumpsuits, we use grey. (Please note that one of the ‘safeguards’ he cites is the option he also points out that many detainees do not have.)

Besides, he says, it’s not as if he’s pulling people off the street for the hell of it: “It is not as David Blunkett that I act to protect national security, but as Home Secretary. And act I must to prevent foreign nationals who we believe are international terrorists, but are unable to deport, from remaining at large in the UK.”

Yep, that’s our David. Calm, responsible and detached. Especially when it comes to terrorism.

And of course it needs to be pointed out that he’s not arresting people willy-nilly: “I deeply resent the inference in The Independent’s leading article on Tuesday that taking decisive measures to protect the country against terrorism – and the measures have protected us – is somehow to deny those very rights. I want a rational debate but based on facts. It is wrong to claim – as the media has this week – only 14 people have been charged out of more than 600 arrested under counter-terrorism laws. In fact, about half of those who have been picked up under the Terrorism Act 2000 have been charged with differing offences – 97 of them under the Terrorism Act itself. Under the Anti-Terrorism, Crime and Security Act (ATCSA) 2001, 17 people have been certified, 12 of them are still detained.”

Please note the two-step. He refutes the Independent’s human rights argument because of an ‘erroneous’ claim over how many were charged. If we refer to the article in question, you will note that it claims something lese entirely: Of more than 500 arrested under the Terrorism Act of 2000, just 14 have so far been convicted.

He’s the Home Secretary and he doesn’t know the difference between a charge and a conviction? That calls for a repeat of this link, so it does.

But even if we let this slide, we need to take a look at the ‘about half’ bluff: “In fact, about half of those who have been picked up under the Terrorism Act 2000 have been charged with differing offences – 97 of them under the Terrorism Act itself.”

1. ‘About half’ is not half. Technically it could be ‘more than half,’ but if it were then you would have said that. So is ‘about half’ 290? 240? What? Give me a number, please.

2. 97 charged under the Terrorism Act, hmm? What were the other 100-200 people charged with, then? Littering? I hear that’s an arrestable offence these days.

As for calls for a rational debate, it’s not us defending every move (or hiding from every crisis) with claims that the fucking sky is about to fall. And it’s not us who magically process ‘suspected of having connections to groups who may be involved in terrorism because of what some guy strapped to a board in Guantanamo said’ into ‘people we believe to be international terrorists’…

Beware the lies. Beware the creep.

(A large version of this image has been posted to B3ta.)

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040812
Flash Games
Time
10:41
Two cool games via The Ultimate Insult:

Shoot the Cliche is a sad in-joke that starts slow, but gets more challenging as time goes by. (It doesn’t get funnier, it just gets more challenging.)

Herculympics follows a very simple rule; take a retro game and add a twist. Prepare to break your keyboard….

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040812
The Political Weblog Movement
Time
10:46
Not-the-Real-Jim-Cousins has a meeting lined up with the real Jim Cousins!

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040812
Riding High on Blogdex
Time
10:59
National Lampoon turn their attention to MoveOn.org

The Onion: Delivering the central speech of his 10-day “Solution For America” bus campaign tour Monday, Democratic presidential nominee Sen. John Kerry outlined his one-point plan for a better America: the removal of George W. Bush from the White House.

Terror searches meet censorship – man almost has book confiscated ‘for his own safety’…

Torygraph – Hand over nuclear weapons and know-how, Iran tells Britain. We’re saying no, yes?

CNN – Wedding guest eat victim. I hope they remembered to keep a slice for luck.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040812
The War on Stupid
Time
11:16
Rob D noticed that the home page of Labour Party in Shepherds Bush points to what used to be the Hounslow Labour Party website. Sadly, whoever was in charge of renewing the domain hounslowlabour.org forgot to pay the bill and a move to labourinhounslow.org was necessary. What is now at hounslowlabour.org is a very useful guide to pay-as-you-go porn sites.

However, despite this being brought to their attention and reported once or twice, they have yet to chase down and update external links from many other Labour websites. (Not that this is easy to do. With so many of them hiding their content behind frames, a simple Googling of the URL is unlikely to detect every link. Can I perhaps suggest you take a peek at your old referral logs?)

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040812
A Blog is Born
Time
11:17
Meet Rachel, friend of Poons.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040812
George W. Bush
Time
11:20
As George himself might say; “It was the picture that was heard around the world…”

George W. Bush sucker-punches a rugby opponent at Yale.

UPDATE – Would plugging this t-shirt reveal a horrendous (if gratifying) double-standard?

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040812
No, Really…
Time
12:19
Woman thrown overboard for refusing to share her breastmilk.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040812
It’s War! And Somebody’s Telling Porkies!
Time
13:01
Independent – Hutton leak inquiry ‘is yet another whitewash’: Richard Ottaway, a Conservative frontbench spokesman who questioned Dr Kelly when he was a member of the Foreign Affairs Select Committee, said: “This is not only a second whitewash. It is a complete waste of the taxpayers’ money. Everyone knows it was No 10.”

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040812
Photoshopping
Time
13:45
Intelligence gained under torture is admissible in our courts – so long as we didn’t do the torturing…..

I’m still getting over that. Here’s a picture I made to help me cope.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040812
It’s War! And Somebody’s Telling Porkies!
Time
14:20
Washington Post – The Post on WMDs: An Inside Story – Prewar Articles Questioning Threat Often Didn’t Make Front Page.

I can’t possibly improve on the comments by Atrios and Rising Hegemon.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040812
The Political Weblog Movement
Time
15:16
I did warn ‘Ivor’ about posting in first-person, even in jest. Not that it’s confusing (it only confuses the very stupid) but more because it provides justification for this kind of hard-done-by reaction. So, a gentle slap on the wrist for ‘Ivor’ and a quick “get over yourself” for David Lepper for this effort….

MP hits back over spoof weblog: The Pavilion MP has become the latest victim of a national campaign to ‘blackmail’ politicians into starting web log (blog) online diaries. Some of the “proxy-blogs” are openly hostile to the targeted MP and Mr Lepper will now consider legal action to get the site removed…. Dr Nick Palmer, secretary of the all-party Parliamentary internet group, said: “Blackmailing MPs into creating blogs is not the best way. If they want the MP to blog, they should get in touch and ask.”

Ex-squeeze me? I’ve been in touch. I’ve asked aplenty. I may not have talked with the All Party Parliamentary Internet Group but:

1 – They haven’t approached me, either.

2 – I think I had them on my hassle list, but they didn’t appear to do much apart from talk (and their site still uses frames, so I wasn’t expecting much in the way of forward thinking).

As for the whole “David Lepper is a serious and dedicated MP” thing, perhaps his web presence should reflect that.

The blackmail/victim/culprit language deserves a slap too, but what really gets me is “there has been a growth of genuine blogs by MPs following successful internet campaigns in the United States” – when the US model is highly flawed and had nothing to do with this growth. In fact, the first elected officials to start blogging started right here in the UK. And the only reason this campaign is necessary is because the flawed top-down model might yet be adopted here (as the general election looms ever closer and silly money comes into play).

Mr Brendan Montague should check a few of his facts (and perhaps do a little research) before he plays journalist again.

UPDATE – I know, I know – flies and honey. But this kind of ignorance really gets me down. Incidentally, you may wish to take a look at the fabulous website of Nick Palmer, the man who is quoted in this article as some kind of Interweb expert. What would happen if I knocked on your door, Nick?

UPDATE 2 – Nick actually answers his email, so I’m inclined to give him the benefit of the doubt when he tells me that the quote attributed to him was used rather (ahem) selectively. However, he needs to take a closer look at weblogs before he decides what they are.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040813
Civil Liberties
Time
10:22
(Image posted to B3ta.)

Just what in the hell is going on here?

On Wednesday, it was established that evidence obtained by torture is admissible in our courts (as long as it’s not us doing the torturing).

Now – when he’s not bleating to The Scum about the injustice of a criminal winning the lottery – Blunkett is proposing that every offence be an arrestable one!

He would also prefer it if officers could fingerprint you, test your DNA and X-ray you without your knowledge or consent.

Independent – Police to have power to arrest litterbugs

Guardian – Police to get wider arrest powers

Bit Mail-esque, that Indy headline, isn’t it?

OK, let’s try to be sensible and look at this with a cool head…

John Kampfner – This is about politics, not policing: When a government floats changes to the criminal justice system, look for the context as much as the content. The political parties are using the summer to test-run ideas ahead of a frenetic election year. There can be no other reason why David Blunkett has, two days after a speech from Michael Howard, decided to unveil another pot-pourri of ideas in the never-ending “battle” against crime.

But, at the same time, let’s be aware of the creep.

There were certain laws rushed through to target terrorists. Who in their right mind would defend the rights of terrorists?

Oops – these laws were also used to stifle protests – against arms dealers!

There are new police powers designed to crack down on animal rights activists. Who in their right mind would defend the rights of such extremists?

But they apply to you too, Jack. And a law that makes it illegal to protest outside someone’s home technically makes it illegal to protest outside Downing St.

I say again; “Oops!”

Even if they are only headline-grabbers and/or an attempt to dominate the right-field and hamper the Tories – what happens if these ideas take hold? After all, they’re designed to such things as slimy, law-savvy hooligans. Who in their right mind would defend the rights of rampant youths thrusting two fingers at authority?

Certainly not Leah (22, from Hastings) who ‘reckons it’s a good idea’ to make every offence arrestable. She says: “There’s no point just ticking people off. This proposal will make a lot more people stay within the law.”

Ah, yes. As with the ever-developing DNA database and the plan to introduce ID cards (hey, we’re at war, remember), the law-abiding have nothing to fear.

Unless you fear the growth of a police state.

Unless you fear that one day the law may change and put you on the wrong side of it.

And I’m not just talking about making something illegal that you wish/need to do – I’m also talking about making something legal that inconveniences, endangers, or outrages you. (Not that our government would ever, say, pander to the needs to a greedy corporation by approving of morally questionable or unsafe practices.)

The further the creep gets, the less likely it will be that you’ll be able to protest against such things (or anything) effectively.

Currently, if a protest gets to be inconvenient or embarrassing (i.e. if it’s working) the police have to use their imagination with regards to charges and/or goad people into violence. If Blunkett’s proposal’s went through, it would be much easier for police to discourage protestors by making one or two ‘show’ arrests or to displace/disperse protestors by taking them into custody. Embarrassment over little incidents like this will be a thing of the past.

Under Blair, we seem to be forgetting the ‘social’ and getting waaaay out of control on the ‘justice’ – this is especially dangerous in an age where media control is increasingly centralised (and the government becomes more and more adept at controlling it).

What recourse do the public have if they object to the actions/inactions of a corporation or their government and the media are unable or unwilling to highlight the problem?

There are some people who are in this position right now – and the media actually conspire against them. But who in their right mind would defend the rights of rampaging anarchists?

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040813
How To Think Like An Evil Bastard
Time
10:30
Steal monkeys and put them to work! If you get enough monkeys, you may even be able to get them to knock out a novel on the side.

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Date
20040813
Humanity
Time
10:37
Evangalist’s ‘miracle baby’ scam acts as a front for baby-trafficking. There’s a programme about this on Radio 4 at 12:30pm (GMT) today. You may wish to tune in.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040813
Music
Time
10:44
iPod Vs. the Cassette!

‘Stairway to Heaven’ as Schubert would have written it, not to mention Beethoven, Mahler, Miller etc.

The latter brings to mind this fabulous album. I’m proud to say that I not only own a copy, but even keep in the the Regular Rotation library (i.e. not in a box in the attic).

UPDATE – More on the eeeeee-vils of music from Backword.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040813
Tolerance
Time
10:49
Oh God, what a mess.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040813
RWCs
Time
10:51
Oh God, what a bunch of asshats.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040813
The Political Weblog Movement
Time
11:28
It seems that this article is mostly the result of a thin-skinned MP and a journalist who wishes to one day write for the Daily Mail.

‘Ivor’ has been in touch about amendments to the David Lepper proxy-blog (i.e. removing/rewriting the ‘first person’ material) but he also points out that this article was written without his knowledge. Mr Brendan Montague didn’t even bother to advise him of the article; much less ask why he had created a proxy-blog. I’d like to think that we have slightly more class than this, so if you do link to this story and/or comment on the writing style, judgement or parentage of Mr Brendan Montague, please do get in touch via mailto:news@theargus.co.uk and let him know why his ears are burning. (UPDATE – Brendan claims to have tried to reach ‘Ivor’ and myself by email and blames deadlines for the inaccuracies. He also requests that any correspondence regarding this article be sent to his direct address. Google hasn’t seen this address yet, so I’ve spamblocked it as a courtesy – brendan DOT montague AT theargus DOT co DOT uk)

Note – It’s worth mentioning the sudden rush of press releases that have followed David Lepper’s discovery of the proxy-blog – and that one of them concerns an issue raised at the blog.

On a more positive note, Nick Palmer has been in touch to defend his choice of publishing platform, which relies heavily on a direct newsletter with a readership approaching 1500 peeps (contents of this newsletter are mirrored on the site).

Nowt wrong with that, but take a look at his main concern about blogging (Nick has asked me to plug his way of doing things, which is why I’m being so liberal with the email quotage):

“I don’t want to write frequent short passing thoughts – I want to chew over issues in depth from time to time, usually about once a week. Because my format is email-driven, a blog approach would mean sending them an email most days. Many would unsubscribe. I could instead invite them to look at the web site when they felt like it, but that would mean that if I wanted to consult them on a current issue I’d be at the mercy of when they next went to have a look.”

Basically, Nick has mistaken capacity with necessity.

A blog would allow him to publish more frequently, but it wouldn’t compel him to. If he wished, he could publish once a week as he had always done and instead of simply sifting through the isolated replies by email (he gets about 300 per newsletter) he could instead bring it to life by inviting comment on the website.

One is a publication, the other is a conversation (which often brings new ideas to the table). There is no need to blog hourly or daily to make this happen.

As an added benefit, this level of interaction with the online community nearly always improves search results (which often brings new people to the table). There is no need to reach thousands of people to make this happen.

Nick seems worried that the site will become inundated with non-constituents, but he doesn’t seem to understand the value of attracting like-minded individuals to his site (i.e. peeps who are interested enough in any given issue to search for more information). I’m sure there’s more than one problem Nick deals with that people outside his constituency may have dealt with before and/or may be able to help with.

Anyway, he knows all this now, so I’ll let you know what he comes back with. (UPDATE – He’s not sold on it yet, but there is hope…)

Moving right along to some excellent news from the proxy blog for Alan Milburn

Meeting Alan Milburn: Alan seemed very keen for the blog to continue, and was interested in himself and his office taking a more active role, but was reluctant to commit to personally updating the blog before he had a better understanding of how much of a time committment it would be. As a halfway step, one of Alan’s constituency workers is going to start posting items to the blog… in addition to me.

Excellent news. Top banana. Good work that man.

I’ve been kind of slack on Tory-chasing this week, as I’ve had something developing in the background. As soon as I get an answer on this, I’ll be ready to move (or not) on the Tory front.

UPDATE – Julian Bond on Ivor/Lepper Vs. Mike/Milburn

UPDATE – Yes, that’s what we do. We rush straight into blackmail. Because we’re evil. And impatient. And ungrateful.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040813
The Bush Administration
Time
11:32
Via Toby….

BBC – Moore embarrasses new CIA chief: Moore, who directed the film Fahrenheit 9/11, has released an interview with Mr Goss in which he says he lacks the qualifications for the top spy post. “I couldn’t get a job with CIA today. I am not qualified,” Mr Goss told Moore’s production company in March. The White House has dismissed the interview as “ridiculous hearsay”.

Ridiculous hearsay direct from the source?

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040813
It’s War! It’s Legal! It’s Lovely!
Time
12:23
Meanwhile, in Iraq…

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040813
We’re Not At Home To Mr Cock-Up
Time
15:19
I’ll let Annie do the introduction to this wonderful example of customer communication.

It reminds of an idle thought I had the other day about the most interesting request I could make under the Data Protection Act (here’s a handy resource, courtesy of Mark Thomas).

Who do you think would have the most interesting/telling chatter or data relating to little old me and my two stampy feet? SWT? Downing St? The Ecilops?

I can probably only afford one request every month or so, so I’ll have to prioritise. Emails/suggestions to the usual address, please.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040813
Distractions
Time
16:54
Crikey! Look at the size of this week’s B3ta newsletter! Oh my… and there’s some very, very rude bits in this latest edition (read a comment from an outraged recipient). If you wish to avoid blushes and go straight to the coolest features, then bikesagainstbush.com, the KFC clones and this very naff/cool Flash version of pool await your attention.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20040813
The Political Weblog Movement
Time
17:40
Hooray for us, because we’re working to change this.

If you’re an MP, please keep this article and the ‘politics (is) conducted by and for the elite’ comment in mind the next time you prepare to poo-poo our requests or suggest helpfully that perhaps we would care to run for office ourselves. Sneh.








About Tim Ireland

Tim is the sole author of Bloggerheads.
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