01 June 2019

Oh yeah?

Image result for trump images

 A fine example of wishful thinking.  The Times reports
Donald Trump has rejected claims he is unpopular in the UK, saying he believes he is “loved” by the British people as he prepares to start a three-day visit....“I don’t imagine any US president was ever closer to your great land,” he said. “Now I think I am really — I hope — I am really loved in the UK. I certainly love the UK.”
Silly man.


24 May 2019

Quote of the day

President Trump ...
"I'm an extremely stable genius. OK?”
... perhaps not so accomplished when it comes to modesty.

22 May 2019

Some journalists have a twisted mind

The Times reports:
Paddy Power’s never done political correctness. So no big shock to see the bookie price up the next politician to get “milkshaked”. It has Nigel Farage 2-1 favourite to make it a double, followed at 3-1 by Tommy Robinson — now on a hat-trick after two strawberry affairs earlier this month. Boris looks a rather generous 10-1.
And maybe this sort of thing shouldn’t really be encouraged. But it is only milkshake.
And doesn’t the bookie risk something similar to the Sutton United FC pie-eating coup? Mr Farage could always stage manage another milk attack — after placing a big bet with Arron Banks’ money.


15 May 2019

The Minister with four ovens

The communities secretary’s multiple ovens prompted an angry reaction

James Brokenshire, communities secretary, displays his kitchen (and wife), presumably as part of a leadership bid.

But who needs four ovens?


13 May 2019

Quote of the day

From The Guardian (here):
There is something truly grotesque about the unrestrained political beauty contest into which May’s most senior colleagues have now flung themselves. Fashion shoots, posed photographs with spouses, “My vision for Britain” articles: you would never think that the UK had been granted a second extension by the EU, or that May’s withdrawal agreement had failed three times, or that the cross-party talks must deliver soon or collapse.
Extraordinarily, most Tories see no contradiction or impropriety in this. So great is their faith in the power of leadership that they do believe that, say, Boris Johnson or Dominic Raab could do a better job in Brussels than May, and – by sheer force of charisma and personality – whip the EU into line.
This is the deep, collective delusion of a tribe that depends unhealthily upon the magical powers of its chieftain. It is no way to run a party, let alone a country.


02 May 2019


Red Box reports comments on the sacking of Private Pike aka the Defence Secretary:

One cabinet minister said within minutes of the news breaking: "It didn't take Miss Marple did it?"
Another cabinet minister said: "Who would have thought it was him? Apart from everyone who knows him."
"He has form for this," said a third. "He has made a complete prat of himself."

01 May 2019

Go figure

The Guardian reports:
Sainsbury’s results, released this morning, show that the company burned through £46m in costs on the Asda deal before competition regulators torpedoed it last week.
Like-for-like sales fell 0.2% last year, while profits shrank from £309 to £219m.
Perversely, Sainsbury's share price has risen by over 4.5% this morning.

I will never understand the stock market ...


25 April 2019

Weird story of the day

From The Guardian (here):
A parrot has been taken into custody in northern Brazil following a police raid targeting crack dealers.
According to reports in the Brazilian press, the bird had been taught to alert criminals to police operations in Vila Irmã Dulce, a low-income community in the sun-scorched capital of Piauí state, by shouting: “Mum, the police!”
The parrot, who has not been named, was seized on Monday afternoon when officers swooped on a drug den run by a local couple.
“He must have been trained for this,” one officer involved in the operation said of the two-winged wrongdoer. “As soon as the police got close he started shouting.”
A Brazilian journalist who came face to face with the imprisoned parrot on Tuesday described it as a “super obedient” creature – albeit one that had kept its beak firmly shut after being “arrested”.


09 April 2019

Making omelettes

Image result for eggs

The Guardian gets righteous over wasted eggs:
Britons are throwing away 720m eggs every year – three times more than in 2008 and at a cost of £139m – according to research.
The scale of waste has been blamed on overcautious consumers relying on best-before dates to decide if eggs are fresh enough to eat, and the growing popularity of vegetarian and “flexitarian” diets has boosted overall sales.
Last year sales of eggs in the UK were 7.2bn – a 4% rise on the previous year – according to recent figures from the British Egg Industry Council.
720 million eggs sounds a lot.  But actually it is less than 12 eggs per head of population.  For every person in the UK to chuck away 12 eggs in a year does not seem so bad.

Furthermore, if the total eggs sold in Britain number 7.2 billion, then the level of wastage is a mere 1%.


04 April 2019

The flicks

How often, do you suppose, does she actually attend a regular cinema?  The Guardian reports:
Helen Mirren has launched a broadside against Netflix at CinemaCon in Las Vegas. Speaking at a Warner Bros presentation of her new film, The Good Liar, she said: “I love Netflix, but fuck Netflix.”
Mirren continued: “There is nothing like sitting in the cinema.” The convention, at which studios air sneak peeks of forthcoming films, has previously been sceptical about streaming services.
"Nothing like sitting in the cinema"?  Plagued by the sounds and smells of those guzzling popcorn, while irritated by the noise of mobile phones. While those of us who are slightly deaf rue the absence of subtitles.  Having to attend at a pre-set hour.  And all at a cost which vastly exceeds a monthly subscription to Netflix.  Yeah, there's nothing like sitting in a cinema ...


30 March 2019

The Brexit Day that never was

Quote of the day from The Guardian (here):
This was the day when Big Ben was supposed to ring at 11pm to mark the UK’s departure from the EU. When the Red (white and blue) Arrows did a fly past. When new 50p coins were worth 40p. Instead, we were back in a looking-glass world where everyone knew less than they did before. It can’t be long before no one knows anything. Back to the future.
Everything was up for grabs in Schrödinger’s Brexit: when we were leaving, if we were leaving and how we were leaving; who would be the prime minister, and if there would be a general election. Anything and everything was still possible. Parliament had said something but no one could interpret the language it was speaking. A delegation of ministers was going to No 10 to speak to Lino, but there was no guarantee she would be there. She is lost even unto herself.
There was just one certainty. By voting with the government, Boris Johnson had traded his principles for his career. But then we had always known he would. Johnson’s untrustworthiness is the only solid thing the country has left to hang on to. A Newtonian rock in a Quantum Brexit. We really are that far up shit creek.


28 March 2019

Shades of the Cuban Missile Crisis

The Monroe Doctrine was adopted by the US in the early 19th century to discourage European powers from interventions in Latin America.  It appears to be thriving in the 21st century.  The Times reports:
President Trump has called on Russia to “get out” of Venezuela after it deployed troops and equipment in the crisis-torn country.
American officials said the Russian team that arrived in Caracas at the weekend included cybersecurity personnel and special forces. The 100 officers, one official said, came to Venezuela to prop up President Maduro’s embattled regime and secure investments.
Several tonnes of equipment were seen being unloaded from two Russian planes, an Antonov An-124 and an Ilyushin Il-62, at Caracas airport.
Worrying.  Especially as President Trump is no JFK ...


27 March 2019

Lies and consequences

This is what happens when you give credence to anti-MMR propaganda.  The Wall Street Journal reports:
A New York county has declared a state of emergency over one of the worst measles outbreaks in the state in decades, banning unvaccinated minors from public places to help curb the spread of the disease.
Rockland County Executive Ed Day said Tuesday the ban—the first of its kind in the country—will go into effect at midnight.
The extreme measure comes as the county has recorded 153 confirmed measles cases in the past six months, mostly in children under 18, according to the county’s health department. The outbreak is concentrated in the orthodox Jewish communities in Rockland County, including the towns of New Square, Spring Valley and Monsey. Some in those communities oppose vaccinations for religious reasons.
This guy has a lot to answer for.

22 March 2019


From The Times (here):
The Luxembourg prime minister, the deliciously named Xavier Bettel, thinks Brexit is like waiting for Godot. So here’s my quote of the week. At one point in Samuel Beckett’s play, the two key characters look at each other. “I can’t go on like this,” says one. “That’s what you think,” replies the other. Beckett is our Brexit guide. Who knew?


The headlines say it all

The Telegraph

The Guardian Friday


20 March 2019

So much for "taking back control"

The Times reports:
Theresa May will ask the EU to delay Brexit today amid warnings from Brussels that the price of an extension could be a general election or second referendum.
Cabinet ministers are expecting the prime minister to ask for the Brexit deadline to be pushed back to June 30 with the option of requesting a longer delay left open.
Mrs May will then travel to Brussels tomorrow with little to offer the 27 other EU countries, all of which must agree to any postponement. By law Britain will leave the EU with or without a deal in nine days’ time.
She has made a horlicks of it.


19 March 2019

Round and round the garden ...

Speaker Bercow's latest intervention has caused a minor kerfuffle.  The Guardian reports:
This was a whole new level of Brexit clusterfuckery. The previous week’s chaos now merely looked like one of the more unfeasible Matrix plotlines. Just with no Keanu Reeves. A room full of chimps could make a better fist of things. Some MPs talked of proroguing parliament; others of a general election – with 11 days to go till 29 March. Hey, at least it’s still double figures.
For Lino [Leader In Name Only] it was just one more humiliation. Not only would she be going back to Brussels to ask for changes to the withdrawal agreement she wasn’t going to get. She would now be asking for an extension on a deal she was now unable and too scared to put to a vote. Not even the Four Pot Plants can help her now. But on the plus side, at least we’re giving the rest of the world a good laugh. The UK: not just a reality freak show, but also a feel good movie. We fail so they don’t have to. It’s a legacy of sorts for the government.


15 March 2019


The Times reports:
Theresa May will ask the European Union to delay Brexit until at least the end of June after narrowly seeing off an attempt by MPs to seize control of the talks.
The prime minister is set to make a third attempt to win Commons backing for her deal on Tuesday. Even if she is successful Mrs May must now ask Brussels for extra time to complete the necessary legislation.
Acording to Albert Einstein (allegedly), the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, but expecting different results. And if the prime minister wants to keep banging her head against a brick wall, it merely confirms the diagnosis.