Monthly Archives: December 2013

Leaking Taxpayers’ Money

assange13According to the Guardian, it had cost Uncle Bill some 3.8 million by July this year to mount its guard on the Equadorian Embassy to prevent Julian Assange from walking out of the door to potential freedom. Who knows what the bill is by now – some 6 or 7 million presumably.

What an absurd waste of money!  The charges against him are ridiculous – date rape at worst.  But even that puts it much too high: the worst that that can really really be said Continue reading

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Boxing Day with the Beeb

ABCThe laziest people in Australia are not the immigrant boat people, who tend to be rather industrious, but the journalists at the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, who have never bothered to check whether their adolscent crush on socialism might be long overdue for a bit of a spruce-up.  On a normal day (sun shining again –  apart from that, not much happening) their idea of “news” is to read out that morning’s press release by the Labor Party. This is annoying, since such things are tedious ill-mannered and ill-informed diatribes. However, commercial radio is even worse, and being small minded, the ABC wallahs refuse to broadcast the BBC World Service as is.

Public holidays like today, however, are great, because the lazy buggers all take the day off, and just throw the switch for all day World Service. Bliss!

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Filed under Culture, News from at home, Politics

Dog’s Dinner

dogsdinnerLouise thought it would be OK to leave some chocolate in her open bag last night.

Perdita thought so too.

Views differ.

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Filed under News from at home

Hoover Damn

I have never liked the Hoover. As a child, my recollection is of endless holiday mornings being spoiled by the incessant wail of our “treasure” trundling around the house hoovering. Short of the sound of someone nearby using a blowing machine to sweep up their garden leaves (why can’t they use a broom?) there are few more annoying noises than that of a vacuum cleaner whilst one is trying to work.

Anyway, in order that my treasure these days spends more time sorting out the washing of my clothes and less time hoovering, I have acquired a robot. It is a Hoover Expert, and I bought it Continue reading

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Filed under IT, News from at home, Uncategorized

Plain revolting

Australia discourages the smoking of cigarettes by means of its so-called “plain packaging” legislation. This is a misnomer: the required packages are not plain at villagestreetwear_2290_193305522all, but covered with gruesome images of deseased body parts.

Smoking cigarettes in company is pretty anti-social, and in any event, it seems pretty clear that smoking cigarettes is markedly dangerous to the health of the smoker.  Views differ as to whether individuals should be discouraged from smoking in the privacy of their own homes.  But there can be little doubt that, as a determent – particularly for young people – pulling out a pack that is plastered with such revolting images is hardly attractive.

In my parents’ time, the smokers (much more numerous then) used cigarette cases. My father’s, for example, is a Continue reading

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Giving it all up

Major John Fenwick

Major John Fenwick

Major John Fenwick was, like my great etc uncle George Fenwick, an officer in the the parliamentatian army, who saw active service during the civil war and then, a couple of weeks before the trial of King Charles I, was given the task of commanding his squadron of cavalry, in conjunction with the foot troops, to keep order at the King’s execution (the commission was dated 13th January 1648).  John was a barrister as well as a soldier, and it might well have struck him that this order was hardly consistent with the presumption of innocence.  Anyway, he did what he was asked to do, the King was duly convicted and beheaded, and order was duly kept during the execution process.

There is an engraving which shows John on his horse, looking a bit debonair.  But a bit more digging discloses that Continue reading

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Filed under History