Saturday, April 15, 2006
Friday, April 14, 2006
Following up the article I mentioned the other day about deceitful and pressurized global warming 'science', this article in fact, Richard North weighs in with his personal story of scientific engagement. These kinds of things should be printed and pinned up on the wall anywhere that media products are likely to be consumed.
Posted by ed thomas at 2:12 PM
Thursday, April 13, 2006
Well, I had a choice, and I posted at Biased BBC instead.
The topic is France, the reportage from Caroline Wyatt, a reliably mildly irritating presence I find.
But I find myself inclined too to link this wonderful Mark Steyn pen portrait of the life in works of Michael Wharton. I have to say I didn't like him all that much as a writer- I was close to being, but not quite, a fan; and that's why I find Steyn's nearly but not quite effusive style on these occasions so excellent.
Posted by ed thomas at 8:22 PM
Wednesday, April 12, 2006
Anti-Royals worth a post? I believe so
Well, the Royal family've proven they can take it, but it seems to me this is a bit rich. It comes from the BBC, which is an organisation supposed to show impartiality in its role as British state broadcaster.
It may be a bit of a non-job, but I teach non-defining relative clauses among other stuff to people who need to know them, and this specimen is going to become one of my favourites:
'The 21-year-old, who last week joined Army pals at a lap dancing club near Slough, is to join the Household Cavalry's Blues and Royals.
Clarence House has released a series of photographs to mark his graduation. '
Thus the BBC announces Harry's graduation from Sandhurst to defend his country. I included the line following because it seemed to me more than slightly amusing.
Unnecessary information confusing things, see?
At the bottom of the article they reiterate the point (not the graduation, the lapdancing), saying
'The prince has again been the subject of tabloid headlines in the last week.
The Daily Mirror and the Sun said the 21-year-old and his friends visited the Spearmint Rhino club near Slough to celebrate the end of his army training.'
I have never believed the BBC is any friend of the Royal Family, though in a sense they bask in a similar kind of nationalistic glow at times. That hypocrisy is one of the BBC's major turn offs. They just made it worse. On the other hand, I am sure that this kind of publicity will make Harry the nation's secret favourite for the rest of his life.
Meanwhile, a little sequence of more or significantly less relevant links which tickled my fancy:
Posted by ed thomas at 9:34 PM
Tuesday, April 11, 2006
Random, ticklish comic thoughts
Yes there are very serious things taking place (below post gives some details), but I just need a place to giggle manically without upsetting the neighbours- so here goes.
First of all the opinion of a Saudi 'religious author', “Dr.” Muhammad Al-’Arifi about infidelic life: 'they have organizations for homosexuals, organizations for people who marry animals - she marries a dog, a donkey, and so on... The organizations exist, and strangely enough, they are official. They have websites, and they publish magazines with pictures.'
See, I thought about this for a moment, and I honestly don't know if such societies exist or not, or such websites actually. And then I thought of using Google to check, and then I thought, 'rather him than me'. Well, I laughed like a cat laughs- silently.
Then I clicked on VDH's site and the first thing I saw was the following headline:
'Has Ahmadinejad Miscalculated?'
Only I misread it, and I thought (goodness knows why; maybe it was the suggestiveness of a certain Saudi religious scholar) it said:
'Is Ahmadinejad Emasculated?'
I don't know the answer to that question, either.
[addendum: judging from his breadth of understanding VDH could actually; the article whose title I misread so amusingly is actually an excellent one]
Posted by ed thomas at 8:17 PM
looking forward we have Mark Steyn with an essay anatomising recent history. Some do find his work a little gruesome; I just marvel at the clean stokes of the scalpel. As for the argument, there's no doubt he's right and we've been soft-pedalling this issue for decades. I can imagine many anti-war types saying we knew it all the long, Iran's next. That was the horrible thing about being pro-war 3 years ago; logically it should have been, short of miraculous success in Iraq being completed in a matter of months and intimidating countries like Iran into quiescence, but to say so meant effectively becoming the living room advocate of WWIII, mini-Hitler on the sofa.
Well, opponents of the war put paid to the quick Iraq victory which could have salvaged our bacon, didn't they? More or less as I knew they would. I don't think history's a trainwreck; I desperately hope not, but it's certainly a gory business which you can sometimes catch yourself anticipating far too much for comfort.
Riding shotgun we have Christopher Hitchens, doing the brilliant lawyers job he specialises in, reminding one of the proper rational processes involved in thought.
Squabbling over an election result, we have Silvio Berlusconi and Romano Prodi. Ah well, it's not the good news I was hoping for which would have avoided yet more anti-Iraq war (or pro-terrorist) irrationalism. And we also have Chirac abandoning the man whom the BBC profiled using the quote '"It could be seen as a relationship between a bigger and a younger brother,"
"Someone like Mr Chirac is quite lonely. He has no son. He has two daughters, but no son."
Bigger and a younger brother? Maybe Cain and Abel, I suppose (honestly the Beeb's take on France is the other side of absurd sometimes). Eursoc rounds up the Euro situation.
But, to come back to Iran for a moment, I notice that Ammedinejad (sic) has been promising some very good nuclear news, and has swiftly followed it up. Simultaneously, Iran wants in to the UN's "human rights" body. It's like a prizefighter bulking up- not good news if you're the opponent he has in mind.
Posted by ed thomas at 7:02 PM
Monday, April 10, 2006
There's really nothing to say when there's so much to observe.
Here's hoping the Berlusconi swing continues. I'm keeping an eye on this blog for the news. He's a kind of talisman for Italy, a kind of genius, and although his economic policies have failed to a degree, can you imagine the commies doing better? (oh, and he's a reasonably strong from a national security pov).
Then there's this: Captain's Quarters says 'Case Closed' following the translation of a secret Iraqi document showing that Saddam recruited suicide bombers to strike US interests. It's one of those logic gates: if Saddam recruited bombers for targetting the US then Saddam was a living link in the war on terror. But then I knew that anyway.
Then there's this: in the wake of France's backdown over employment reform, the only momentum for change seems to in one scary direction.
I haven't forgotten, incidentally, that this is a Beebbashbased blog. Beeb bashing can wait a little, though not too long (unlike the poetry, which is a bit of a frippery to be honest) as I get a mite twitchy if I don't have the Beeb in my sights.
Posted by ed thomas at 8:24 PM
Sunday, April 09, 2006
Still feel SOCA's an own goal- though not for the politicians.
The lack of interest is pretty amazing (I wrote about this dangerously oriented development recently). I had to trawl through page after page on Google News, most dripping with comic book blandishments about the new extra-police service, before coming to this moderately critical article by Neil Darbyshire in the Telegraph.
Trying to find a political party that will articulate something of this is another matter entirely.
Posted by ed thomas at 6:00 PM