Posted by Tim Ireland at September 11, 2007

Category: The War on Stupid

Comment Is Free – Guarding the gunrunners: In recent weeks, horrifying reports of gun crime have, understandably, been increasing the fear of guns among the British public. Next week, the Metropolitan police will also have guns on their minds. They will be guarding people selling them. From September 11-14, about 1,000 officers per day will be policing Defence Systems and Equipment International (DSEI), one of the world’s largest arms fairs. It will take place at the Excel Centre in east London, with more than 1,000 arms companies selling weapons ranging from handguns to fighter jets. When DSEI was last held, it cost taxpayers over £4m in policing costs.

And yet, for some reason, the police seem determined to prevent the sale of this single tank.

Well done to the Space Hijackers and Artists Anonymous for highlighting this hypocrisy without so much as taking a bid on their new toy.

[Declaration of Interest: I am 0.16% responsible for the relevant funding.]

UPDATE – Indymedia: 14:10: After negotiating a planned route with the police the Space Hijackers Tank finally moved off, but has now been stopped after advancing only around 10 yards. A police officer has just said that they intend to carry out a vehicle check on the tank and may also search the 9 or so occupants of the tank – he estimated this could take up to an hour.

But wait… what’s this?

Report from tank TWO – yes the other was a decoy!

Heh. You gotta love the Space Hijackers.

UPDATE – Indymedia: 15:10 The second tank has now been driven off the low loader and has approached the West gate of DSEi where it has parked blocking the mini roundabout entrance. The turret is facing the arms fair, music is blasting out and a ‘For Sale’ sign has been hung on the side.

Hahahahahahahaha! Oh, I love it. The authorities try to stop one tank and end up looking like hypocrites, but fail to stop the real tank and end up looking like fools to boot.

Oh, and a report is just coming in that police are not moving the tank, but instead plan to erect a barrier around it… and the protestors. Well, the public must be protected, obviously.

Speaking of which….

Ekklesia – Government admits inviting oppressive regimes to arms fair: Information released this morning reveals that the Government has invited a number of oppressive regimes to send representatives to an arms fair in London… China, Libya, Colombia, Russia and Saudi Arabia, all widely criticised for severe human rights abuses, have been invited to the biennial fair run by Reed Elsevier… Iraq has been invited as well as both India and Pakistan, who are in tension with each other.

UPDATE – Hahahaha! The tank sold for the princely sum of $50, which is either a typo, all part of the stunt, or a bargain for someone in the habit of trading in U.S. dollars


‘Night all.

Posted by Tim Ireland at September 11, 2007

Category: It's War! It's Legal! It's Lovely!

Bush’s pet general makes his ‘surge progress’ report on the 10th, so all analysis is neatly counter-pointed by the anniversary of the attacks of September 11, 2001.

The reason for this should be obvious… even though the only connections between Iraq and 11/9 (please note correct, non-branded formatting of date) were created or fabricated by the Bush administration.

How many times will the many* victims of that terrorist attack be expected to roll over in their graves?

[*As expected, the actual death toll is now uncertain (1, 2, 3), but certain to rise. Asbestos is deadly… and not best dealt with by sweeping it under the rug.]

UPDATE – Huffington Post – Petraeus: “I Don’t Know” If My Iraq Policy Makes America Safer

UPDATE – Some valuable clarity and context for you.

Posted by Tim Ireland at September 11, 2007

Category: Humanity

Independent – Anita Roddick, capitalist with a conscience, dies at 64

In this world, there are many forces that just are; it may be possible to change them, but there’s no sense in attributing personalities to them.

However, wherever one or more sentient beings has an influence, evil can and does exist, and is easily recognisable via any knowing attempt to corrupt life… typically, to gain money or power.

There is no doubt in my mind that Anita Roddick devoted her life to being an opposing and/or limiting force to this evil. That she engaged in capitalism to do this and gained money and power in the process made it easier for the supporters or servants of some of the most evil people on this planet to play the following game:

For any questionable judgement, for any minor infraction, for any surrender to market forces (most notably this one), they would stand, point the finger and scream; “LOOK! She’s not PERFECT!”

No, she wasn’t perfect, and neither did she claim to be… but you’d be surprised how common this little deceit is and how often it works.

And, sadly, due to the curious libel laws we all live by, we can expect to see much more of this kind of thing directed against Anita Roddick now she has passed on; the small amount of protection her reputation will have in death will consist of the company/brand that survives her… and those who continue to support her and what she stood for.

You can count me among the latter because, if you’ll pardon the knowing pun, she’s worth it.

Posted by Tim Ireland at September 10, 2007

Category: George W. Bush

Independent – Comedians lead protests at Sydney gathering of world leaders: As leaders of the Apec nations, which include China, Japan and Russia, prepared to hold their annual summit this weekend, several demonstrations were staged. In Hyde Park, in Sydney city centre, dozens of people held a “Bums for Bush” protest, baring their bottoms in unison. They also performed a “21 Bum Salute” to the 21 member nations, with their bottoms spelling out the words “Bums not Bombs”. After rain dispersed the protesters, they spilled on to the nearby street, where they held up an official motorcade. Scuffles broke out as police pushed the demonstrators – carrying placards that stated “Sign Kyoto, you wankers” – out of the way.

Posted by Tim Ireland at September 7, 2007

Category: The Political Weblog Movement

Oh, wait… no he isn’t. Sorry, my mistake.

UPDATE – Oh, I do not fucking believe it… is he shooting for Hypocrite of the Year to promote his new book or something?

Iain Dale says he does not like the media speculating on the McCanns because “lives are at stake”… and yet he says this in the same bloody post where he just happens to mention a Lib Dem connection or two. For no reason other than it might interest people… in a totally innocent and casual manner, you understand.

What a grade-A two-faced…

(I’d say something under comments, but he’s already banned me for objecting to crap like this and I’m not a user and abuser of sock-puppets like Iain Dale and his Tory mates. Not that this stops Iain from yelling ‘sock-puppet’ when it suits him… it’s all part of the show, folks.)

UPDATE – Iain’s back-pedalling like mad, but for those who are in any doubt about the ‘casual’ way in which he mentions some things but not others, check this other recent post. Now, Iain knows that the people behind the report he links to (the Bow Group) exist to “develop policy, publish research and stimulate debate within the Conservative Party”… but does he mention that? Even as an aside? Even for no other reason than it might interest people? No he fucking doesn’t.

It seems at times that Iain Dale will take any chance he can get to push Tory propaganda (often surreptitiously) and undermine the opposition (often audaciously).

OK, so that makes him a hell of a campaigner… but it makes him a pretty unreliable commentator, a disgraceful blogger, and not much of a human being.

UPDATE – Iain Dale: “No Chris, if I get things wrong I apologise.”


Posted by Tim Ireland at September 7, 2007

Category: Teh Interwebs

[EDIT: The body of this post has been removed pending legal advice. I’ve been given less than an hour’s notice on this, so there’s no time to determine exactly what content Usmanov’s ever-vigilant lawyers object to. For this reason, all text from the original post has been removed as a temporary precaution.]

Posted by Tim Ireland at September 7, 2007

Category: The Political Weblog Movement

Here’s another Tory banner for you. As with the previous one, it comes with its own embedded link:

The Times – Blow for Cameron as treasurer quits over party’s ‘swing to Right’: An added headache for the Tory leadership is that Mr Eliasch, 45, made a £2.6 million loan to the party, which is still outstanding. Sources close to the Swedish businessman, who is chairman of the sporting goods manufacturer Head, would not comment on suggestions that he might call in the loan. Such an action, although unlikely, may cause unexpected problems for the party.

[Psst! Iain Dale’s old-news ‘exclusive’ over Lib Dem loans yesterday now makes a lot more sense. I’ll add it to the pile of existing proof of the audacious partisanship of 18DoughtyStreet and everything else the old fraud touches. Well done to Iain Dale, the master of truth, the champion of transparency and the enemy of spin.]

UPDATE: Here’s some ‘copy and paste’ code that will allow you to display this banner on your own website. Please be aware that I usually only use SWF embedding code in my own backyard, so your mileage may vary on some external websites and/or in some browsers. It would be a very good idea to test before publishing:

UPDATE – BBC – Ex-Tory donor to be Brown adviser: A Swedish businessman who lent £2.6m to the Conservatives is to leave the party to become an adviser to Gordon Brown. Johan Eliasch had resigned from his post as Tory deputy treasurer but the party had said he remained a supporter. On Friday he confirmed that he had accepted the prime minister’s invitation to conduct a review on deforestation and green energy.

Posted by Tim Ireland at September 6, 2007

Category: It's War! It's Legal! It's Lovely!

Riverbend, on arriving safely in Syria: The first minutes after passing the border were overwhelming. Overwhelming relief and overwhelming sadness… How is it that only a stretch of several kilometers and maybe twenty minutes, so firmly segregates life from death? How is it that a border no one can see or touch stands between car bombs, militias, death squads and… peace, safety? It’s difficult to believe- even now. I sit here and write this and wonder why I can’t hear the explosions. I wonder at how the windows don’t rattle as the planes pass overhead. I’m trying to rid myself of the expectation that armed people in black will break through the door and into our lives. I’m trying to let my eyes grow accustomed to streets free of road blocks, hummers and pictures of Muqtada and the rest… How is it that all of this lies a short car ride away? (via)

Posted by Tim Ireland at September 6, 2007

Category: The Political Weblog Movement

Let’s face facts… they went begging for it this time:

UPDATE: Here’s some ‘copy and paste’ code that will allow you to display this banner on your own website. Please be aware that I usually only use SWF embedding code in my own backyard, so your mileage may vary on some external websites and/or in some browsers. It would be a very good idea to test before publishing:

Posted by Tim Ireland at September 6, 2007

Category: It's War! It's Legal! It's Lovely!

Invite your MP to a speaker meeting at Parliament on Tuesday 9th October… “and don’t forget to tell them about the TV crews.”

Heh. Dan’s got their number.

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