As the Conservatives – AKA The Party of the Rich - prepare for their annual conference in Birmingham, British people are realising in greater number than ever before just how little the elite politicians care about ordinary citizens.
An example of this can be seen in how the Tories are aiming to allow the mainsteam communications media to continue to self-regulate, even as the scandal of phone-hacking is still being investigated, and police are still in the process of questioning and charging possible criminal suspects.
It is exactly the same with the financial crisis: the failed and disgraced bankers and financiers are close friends, colleagues and relatives of members of the Tory Party – that is why there have been no arrests stemming from the actions leading to the world recession.
Those close to the corridors of power suggest this is because the politicians know that it will be easier to sneak this lack of statutory regulation through before any high profile sentences are passed against the Prime Minister’s former media secretary, Andy Coulson, and close friend Rebekah Brooks.
Hacked Off said it was concerned by comments made by Tory ministers.
Appearing before the inquiry, the education secretary, Michael Gove, argued against the statutory regulation of the press and urged Leveson to “consider carefully” his proposals.
Theresa May, home secretary, has given a warning on possible “unintended consequences” if self-regulation were scrapped. Gove, of course, formerly worked for Murdoch’s News International, a subsidary of News Corp.
On 5 July 2011 in partnership with Professor Brian Cathcart and other concerned individuals, the Media Standards Trust formed the “Hacked Off” campaign.
The Media Standards Trust was formed in 2006 to address concerns of a deterioration in journalistic standards at a time when the media were becoming enormously powerful while remaining largely opaque and unaccountable.
Peter Joseph’s latest film is out and available to watch on my Facebook page.
The movie is entitled
CULTURE IN DECLINE pt 2
Click here to watch
It’s fairly short and enjoyable.
It was on YouTube for a while but now appears to have been taken down.
Friends on Facebook are reporting that videos of the mass demonstrations taking place across much of the world are being taken down from YouTube after Google agreed to requests from national governments.
To see original post click here
This stands in stark contrast to YouTube refusing to delete the Innocence of Muslims film clips which sparked Islamic protests across much of the Muslim world.
The largest public protests, rallies, and demonstrations that the world has ever seen are happening with almost no media coverage. Not only is there a blackout on these events in the media, but YouTube is frequently removing footage of these mass rallies and events when requested to do so by governments:
‘Google, the owner of YouTube, has complied with the majority of requests from governments, particularly in the United States and the UK, not only to remove You Tube videos, but also specific web search terms and thousands of “data requests,” meaning demands for information that would reveal the true identity of a You Tube user.’ These events are truly inspiring and should be front page news! Yet mainstream media is working with governments to keep people uninformed and dis-empowered.
SPELLCHECKER OR LANGUAGE WRECKER?
I really love blogging as I greatly enjoy both communicating my ideas with others and hearing what they’ve got to say. As bloggers will all be aware, WordPress has an onboard Spellchecker that lets the writer know if they make mistakes when authoring their posts.
Now I’m writing this in MS Word and will copy the text across to my blog New Post window. When I write the posts directly in WordPress I’ve noticed a common and regular issue with spellings that the Spellchecker flags up as incorrect. I’m talking about the difference between American and British English.
So when I write words such as ‘theatre’, ‘centre’, ‘harbour’, or a whole group of words that end ‘-ise’ the spellchecker underlines the words as incorrect. The checker likes ‘–ize’ rather than ‘-ise’ and the US versions of many common words. I’m sure British English writers can think of more examples.
Now although an English graduate and postgraduate and sometime teacher of language and literature, I’m not one of those that believes in a fixed, static language and do not worry if folk subvert or evolve what is sometimes anachronistically known as the Queen’s English. But I don’t know if I want to give up all my English English spellings simply because of a spellchecker.
I know some other British bloggers feel strongly about this as our language is very much part of our identity and it can feel like an attack on our history and culture when a dumb spellchecker says it is wrong.
Sometimes it’s nice to show my geographical background by the way I write and spell certain words, although I don’t know how readers respond to this, be they Americans, Canadians, Australians, Europeans or Asians. And English is the second language for most people, so this is something that affects most of the world in one way or another.
So my questions to readers are these;
- Should we just give up on British spellings as old-fashioned and obsolete and adopt US versions en masse?
- Should we continue with traditional spellings and try to keep them current, even though it’s fairly obvious US versions will one day become dominant and ubiquitous?
- Should we use English forms when writing to British folks and use US variants when writing for an international or mainly US audience?
- Not bother either way and just do what feels right in an ad hoc manner?
- Something else?
I’d like to hear what others think, wherever you live and whatever version of English you usually use.
12 months ago, a group of angry people decided to direct a protest at those they held most accountable for the current economic crisis: the bankers, the stock brokers, the mega-corporations. The protesters were, on the whole, ordinary people bewildered to find themselves struggling to keep their heads above water through no fault of their own. Educated people, hard-working people shocked into the realisation that they were not in full control of their own lives, but were at the mercy of financial institutions and global businesses whose only goal is to drive profits.
Love you all!
Firstly let me thank Leopard for her brilliant blog CRATES AND RIBBONS and nominating DOG Sharon for the ONE LOVELY BLOG AWARD. As with other similar blogging awards the rules are fairly simple – thank the nominator, answer some personal questions and nominate other blogs.
In this case the winner has to thank the nominating blogger, post the award graphic, nominate 15 blogs, share 7 things about themselves and comment on the blogs nominated.
I had a cuppa and thought about this: 15 blogs – and those blog owners nominate 15 more and so on. This is termed a geometric progression (I think)
I then wondered how many WordPress blogs actually existed.
According to Forbes “WordPress powers one of every 6 websites on the Internet, nearly 60 million in all, with 100,000 more popping up each day. Those run through its cloud-hosted service, which lets anybody create a free website online, attract 330 million visitors who view 3.4 billion pages every month.”
So assuming each blogger takes 2 days to accept the award and nominate another 15 the numbers go like this:
DAY 1 - 1 x 15 = 15 blogs nominated
DAY 3 - 15 x 15 = 225 blogs nominated
DAY 5 - 15 x 225 = 3,373 blogs nominated
DAY 7 - 15 x 3,373 = 50,625 blogs nominated
DAY 9 - 15 x 50,625 = 259, 375 blogs nominated
DAY 11 - 15 x 259, 375 = 3,890,025 blogs nominated
DAY 13 - 15 x 3,890,025 = 58,350,375 blogs nominated
DAY 15 - 15 x 58,350,375 = 875,255,625 blogs nominated
DAY 17 - 15 x 875,255,625 = 13,128,834,375 blogs nominated
DAY 19 - 15 x 13,128,834,375 = 196,932,515,625 blogs nominated
DAY 21 - 15 x 196,932,515,625 = 2,953,987,734,375 blogs nominated
DAY 23 - 15 x 2,953,987,734,375 = 44.309,816,015,625 blogs nominated
Therefore if everybody nominated for the ironically named ONE LOVELY BLOG AWARD nominated another 15 blogs (and they didn’t keep nominating the same blogs) all the approx 60 million blogs would be receive the award in13 days.
So what am I to do? I would argue that if an award is to mean anything, then everybody can’t win it in less than 3 weeks. I’m quite happy to reveal 7 things.
So readers – please make some suggestions – what do you think is the best course of action?
This morning, I would like to quote from perhaps the best satire written in the English language – namely Gulliver’s Travels by Jonathan Swift. Most people are aware of only some parts of the first part of the first voyage in which Gulliver finds himself in Lilliput. Here the inhabitants grow to no more than 6 inches high and the hero of the novel is considered to be a giant. However, there are many other voyages covered in the book but these are normally left out of popular versions of the story because they are considered unfit for children due to their often crude subject matter and highly satirical nature.
As a student of literature I can recommend this as one of the top novels ever written.
My point here is to tell you about a short passage in the book where Swift, in an allusion to the reference in the 10 Biblical Commandments to ‘honour thy father and mother’, says the following:
“The Lilliputians … will never allow that a child is under any obligation to his father for begetting him, or to her mother for bringing her into the world; which, considering the miseries of human life, was neither a benefit in itself, nor intended so by his parents, whose thoughts in their love-encounters were otherwise employed. Upon these and the like reasonings, their opinion is that parents are the last of all others to be trusted with the education of their own children…”
After Gulliver escapes from Lilliput he arrives at the Kingdom of Brobdingnab where he is only 6 inches tall and the native inhabitants are giants. After many escapades he becomes friendly with the King and many brilliant discussions take place which allows the author to poke fun at our society and our warlike nature. The King of Brobdingnab is appalled to hear of the lies and machinations of our political classes, our evil military inventions and downright cruelty to one another and comments:
In subsequent voyages Gulliver meets a wide range of weird and wonderful people and in the final chapter makes the acquaintance of a race of rational horses who live side by side with a race of horrible, filthy animals called Yahoos. Of course, we are the Yahoos and the internet company of the same name is named after this literary invention.
In WHERE ARE WE GOING? Peter Joseph talks about the ideas behind The Venus Project and a resource-based economy and how we need to change our culture to grow as a species.
Peter shows how competition, elitism and an economy based on scarcity can only lead to wars, unhappiness and ultimately the destruction of humanity. He advocates a truly breathtaking social evolution where everyone is valued and everyone contributes to the greater good of all.
Using modern technology, critical thinking and a systems-based approach we can construct a future society that will eliminate waste and provide everybody with what they need to prosper and realise their potential.
Like the Zeitgeist films, this lecture is most illuminating and liberating, and well-worth spending an hour or so to educate ourselves in these crucial approaches.
The big question is; when will YOU commit to creating a beautiful future for all life on this planet?
Tim Berners-Lee said today: “The internet is designed as a decentralised system. At the moment, because countries connect to each other in lots of different ways, there is no one off switch, there is no central place where you can turn it off.”
“In order to be able to turn the whole thing off or really block or suppress one particular idea then the countries and governments would have to get together and agree and co-ordinate and turn it from a decentralised system to being a centralised system. And if that does happen it is really important that everybody fights against that sort of direction.”
As if they would do that to their people…
“The human brain, which loves to read descriptions of itself as the universe’s most marvelous organ of perception, is an even more marvelous organ of rejection. The naked facts of our economic game are easily discoverable and undeniable once stated, but conservatives – who are usually individuals who profit every day of their lives from these facts – manage to remain oblivious to them or to see them through a very rose-tinted lens.
Similarly, the revolutionary ignores the total testimony of history about the natural course of revolution, through violence, to chaos and then back to the starting point.”
ROBERT ANTON WILSON
In US election year, Peter sardonically examines American democracy and shows how the capitalist system controls our thoughts and actions so there are no real choices. He shows how puppet politicians are bankrolled by corporations and asks why we need these leaders at all. This is the same point I make in Womanifesto and we agree that modern leaders play the same role as kings, emperors and dictators did formerly.
For democracy to work, all citizens must be educated to understand the issues, yet critical thinking and logic are ignored and learning by rote is taught to millions. Joseph argues the US two party political system is a con – there is no real choice and all good change derives from pressure from below – not the Republican and Democratic parties.
He also shows how the big parties came together to set up and control the Presidential debates so killing intelligent discussion and stopping smaller parties getting airtime. This is exactly the same as in the UK and most other so-called democracies. Noam Chomsky has been saying this for years.
Even now as more and more species become extinct, the climate changes to who knows what and humanity teeters on the brink of disaster, most folk are more interested in inane celebrities, fashion and consumerism.
Peter also shows how religion creates an unthinking populace who do as they are told rather than questioning everything.
So if you care about the future, the ecosystem and your own minds – watch and engage with this film – what could be more important?
Impressive and important Swedish documentary on
TOP DOCUMENTARY FILMS
about the growth, people and philosophy of Wikileaks
Who would have thought the Russian leadership would cheer people up with their dancing? After the Pussy Riot controversy I’m sure most folk would think just the opposite, but wait, Dimitry Medvedev is a right little raver.
While his political master Putin is more famous for judo and riding bareback on a huge killer whale, diminutive Dimitry is a pocket Fred Astaire and Michael Jackson rolled into one.
Don’t believe me? Then watch this video of Dimitry dancing. There’s also footage of a flash mob giving it large outside the Kremlin and saving the best till last, a satirical piss-take from Russian television Channel 1 which completely cracks me up.
Watch and laugh…
Twitter allows advertisers to target users directly in bid to increase profits
Social media platform slashes the price of ‘promoted tweets’ to 1 penny and will sift through messages to discern users’ specific interests.
The number of young people contacting ChildLine after seeing online videos of hardcore pornography has risen significantly in the past year.
Call-handlers at the charity reported a 34% rise in the number of calls from teenagers distressed by the images they had viewed, amounting to more than 50 calls a month.
Esther Rantzen, who founded ChildLine, warned that adult videos were “very available,” making it difficult for parents to stop their children from seeing them.
Hi mates – can somebody help me please? I was using the VOSTOK theme and then my blog changed without me doing anything.
Has this happened to anyone else?
I’ve tried to set it back but nothing happens.
Comments please friends…
Daily Complaint. Aug 23:
GOP: Hurricane Isaac A Message From God
As journalists nationwide are connecting the dots of dumbness regarding Todd Akin’s connection to Lyin’ Paul Ryan and Mike Huckabee, something important, something directly from God Almighty to the Republican Party, is on its way: Hurricane Isaac.
Yes, just as a mighty preacher named Pat Robertson proclaimed that Hurricane Katrina was a message from God Almighty that America was going down because of gays and Liberals, I am here to proclaim that, because the Republican Party has conducted a war against women, God Almighty has sent Hurricane Isaac to disrupt their all-but-holy convention in a city ironically named Tampa.