Friday, October 31, 2008

Further to yesterday's remarks about the misrepresentation of our pronunciation. After writing it I did a search and hit upon the linked article. Hardly a word in it represents correctly the way we speak. Still if it gives visitors a laugh at our expense then it's all worthwhile I suppose.
The phrase that really got my goat is the one including the spelling "curld" for cold. Anyone with the slightest acquaintance with Hull should know that we pronounce that word "cowld". Gowld for gold, sowld for sold, owld for old, towld for told, there's no mistaking that pronunciation for anyone that listens. I left a comment to that effect on the page. I'll wait to see if it appears there.
" ...when his hire was announced I sent an email of protest to her, the only one I have sent in my entire career. I knew this would end in tears because it could only end in tears."
Paul Gambaccini
"If the BBC still has the courage to take risks it should do so on issues of significance - through journalism, not comedy. With the news industry in crisis, the BBC has a superb opportunity to advance the cause of investigative reporting and the classic fourth estate ideal of holding power to account. The sadness of Mark Thompson's term as DG to date is that it has attempted too little of this. His post-Hutton BBC seems terrified of serious, significant risk. That is among the reasons that it employs fools to boast about who they have slept with in preference to tough, "edgy" journalists. Andrew Gilligan does not insult harmless grandfathers. His targets deserve the attention he gives them."
Tim Luckhurst

Thursday, October 30, 2008

"Summatup wi' yer peas, pal? Stop mernin'. Tha'll get nowt else from us tonight"
That's the way we're supposed to talk in Hull, according to somebody who writes for the Guardian, and thinks Hull is a suburb of Rotherham.
First sentence passes muster, but "tha"? The only people in Hull who say "tha" are John Godber and the South Yorkshire crew he's brought in to play Hull people at his Hull Truck Theatre. I'm assuming that that's the source of this hack's version of the Hull dialect and accent. Oh yes, and that abortion called "Learn Yourself 'Ull" or something similar, which was slapped together by some piss-taking southerner who came up here on the make. He's responsible for the "mernin'" myth. In Hull moaning and morning have the same pronunciation, and it's mornin' not mernin'. We don't call the Pope the Perp, we call him the Pawp, and we make fawn calls, not fern curls, you tin-eared twat!
Too late now; look up the Hull accent on the internet and you'll find all that fern curl nonsense. The wikipedia article on Hull repeats the falsehood, though qualifying it with "in and around parts of Hull", otherwise it's description is acceptable. What really annoys me is I see this crap repeated by Hull people who would rather believe what's written by some middle-class southerner than the evidence of their own ears. Is this the Hull version of the cultural cringe?

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

PEOPLE POWER! While you're at it, Thomson, why not give the Augean Stables a complete going over? Get rid of all the filth.

Correction (31st October): Thompson, not Thomson.
I nominate Seán Hughes to replace J.Ross on his radio and TV shows. After all he's already stood in for him elsewhere without any problems.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Bête Noire time -
This morning the BBC reported the US army's incursion into Syria and subsequent killing spree. Correction: the newsreader stated that the the Syrians were claiming that the raid had occurred and the Yanks weren't commenting. For the BBC this means it might not have happened.
This was followed up by a reporter in Syria giving further details of the raid that may not have happened. If the Yanks issue a denial, I expect the reporter to come back on air to say it was all a dream. He ended his report with a suggestion that the Syrians had been asking for it.

Meanwhile we are presented with the edifying spectacle of the BBC defending the perverts Jonathan Ross and Russell Brand.
"In October 2008, Ross and Russell Brand made a series of allegedly 'obscene' phone calls to 78 year old actor Andrew Sachs as part of Brand's pre-recorded BBC Radio 2 show. During the first phone call, Ross shouted out "He fucked your granddaughter", referring to Brand's previous on-air claim that he had sexual intercourse with Sachs' granddaughter Georgina, a member of the group 'The Satanic Sluts'. Mr Sachs and his daughter Kate were said to be left deeply upset by the incident"

We may expect the broadcasting of obscene telephone calls to become a regular feature of the BBC Radio entertainment output.

On the subject of obscenities, the fat saviour of Radio1 -
" ... I was suddenly confronted by a terrifyingly plausible vision of the future in which Chris Moyles is suddenly only the second most gormless and insufferable prick on Radio1."
(Charlie Brooker, "Dawn of the Dumb")

Sunday, October 26, 2008

STS Bulletin no.13
Oligarch, a successful Russian thief. A successful British thief is an entrepreneur. Richard Branson is not an oligarch because he is not Russian.
The oligarchs of Russia were originally referred to in their homeland as the kleptocracy, another Greek word and a favourite of mine. No British media outlet would use this word (British libel law) so oligarch is the acceptable label.
"Behind every great fortune there lies a crime." (Honoré de Balzac, "Il y a un crime caché à l’origine de chaque grande fortune.")

No punches pulled; no holds barred; no lie unspoken; no bigot silenced. US politics, just a sack of shite.

Friday, October 24, 2008

How strange! Yesterday I opened my paper and my prayers were answered. The first thing I saw was a photograph of a couple identified as Tom Cruise and his wife Katie Holmes. How is it that I never heard Mr. Cruise's name mentioned along with the lady's?
So no subliminal message, apart from, "These people are important to you. You must take an interest in them". I suppose it's human being as brand.

Also, in the same edition, an opening salvo against the greenwash industry. A weekly column is promised exposing all the lies, and all the dodges. Then I open the paper this morning and am greeted by a full page advert by Captain Ahab (*$$), scourge of the third world. In it the captain defines "sustainable" as = "good". This may be a corrective to the previous day's article which declared "sustainable" to be one of those meaningless words favoured by the greenwashers. The Captain also boasted of his cooperation with those saviours of the planet, Conservation International.
Sat sapienti.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Deripaska, a name I'd heard and that's about all. Russian, filthy rich, sniffing around Arsenal, no doubt bent as a poker.
Well it seems we're going to hear a lot more about this gent for a while, so I looked him up on wikipedia, and linked to his entry.

On the subject of names that are just that, something puzzles me. There is always a name kicking around that seems to have no person attached to it, at least as far as I'm able to discern. The current non-person is Katie Holmes. Who or what is Katie Holmes? Could be a film or a book for all I know. Could be a real person or fictional. All I know is, not a day passes but that I hear the name, but never hear anything else. It's like that Derren Brown act, where he plants words in people's minds, to be activated later as behavioural prompts. Maybe one day I'll be walking round a store, see some product emblazoned with the words "Katie Holmes", and I'll feel an urge to buy it.
Of couse I could just look the name up on the net, as I did with Mister Deripaska, but I'm playing along, anticipating the outcome.
A previous name that kept occuring and recurring was Hannah Montana. I now know that this is a fictional character used by Disney to gouge money out of kids, but for a long time I kept hearing this name without a clue as to its meaning. I did realise, however, that I needn't concern myself as I wasn't part of the target audience.
Soon the mission of Katie Holmes will be revealed to me, by which time the hucksters will be peddling another name-in-isolation.
I suppose I should accept that, if I have to be told who or what these names represent, I'm just not in the swim, in the loop, up to snuff, or ... (whatever the correct term is).

Monday, October 20, 2008

Further to the jolly rogering of our citizens by NHS Hull:
The local paper has published two interviews on this topic, both in favour. One interviewee was the bloke lined up to skipper the yacht, the other was some bloke from another quango. It seems that the SS Profligacy scheme is not going to get any heat from the local press, though its readers are singing a different tune.
I liked the suggestion by one reader identified as "Julia, East Yorkshire", as did others, so I take the liberty of posting it here. I hope that I'm not breaking any rules.

Why on earth are they thinking of buying a yacht, I have teenagers and even they dont think its a good idea, get real, this is not going to get kids working after they have done some sailing. If the money cannot go into our hospitals where it is desperately needed then get the kids to do some real work and start some allotments from scratch, this will teach them team work, in all weathers, and everything they grow can be sold and money put back into nhs or use the food to give the local hospitals and underprivileged families fresh vegetables instead of processed ready meals this will give the kids a better sense of satisfaction and will teach them the values of real food which will in years to come save the nhs a fortune.
Was it yesterday or was it the day before? I'm watching the telly, there's this woman talking, and I hear her say "My legs literally turned to jelly". Literally, Missus? Jelly, Missus? Go on!
Listening to the news programme on Radio 3 this morning I heard Professor Eric Hobsbawm discussing the current economic situation. HOBSBAWM? What's the matter with the Adam Smith Institute? Has their hidden hand bullshit become so unfashionable? The BBC giving aid, succour and appearance fees to Marxists, what will their masters at MI5 have to say about this?

Next: the BBC hires John Pilger to to film a series of documentaries.
"That'll be the day" (C.H.Holly).

Sunday, October 19, 2008

I still think the old white man will win, whatever the polls say.
Apparently the key state of Colorado has already rigged the ballot in favour of the Republican.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Brown and Darling said they'd do anything necessary to support the finance sector.
Brown says he'll do anything he can to help the unemployed.
Spot the difference.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

This may be hard to believe. Something called NHS Hull, which calls itself a "primary care trust", is buying a yacht for £400,000. This is for the benefit of young people's health, nothing else.
When I see the word "trust" in the name of any organisation my suspicions are aroused. I get the impression that once any bunch of chancers identify themselves as a trust they become answerable to nobody. Am I wrong? This removal of the National Health Service from any sort of meaningful oversight was step one in the Thatcherite privatisation plan. Bring on the quangocrats, dodgy businessmen, Tory placemen and their wives, concubines and catamites. Throw in a few consultants sick of serving the great unwashed, and the whole idea of a public service is undermined.
Suddenly the funding begins to disappear down the proverbial black holes. Everything becomes more expensive when competition is introduced - why is that? Still there's always enough for the managers to award themselves a juicy pay rise. Then there are the other perks. How about a yacht, gang? Of course we'll have to find some tenuous link to primary care. I know our primary care is reserved for ourselves, but we can't be too blatant, can we? We let the young offenders play with it for part of the year till the furore dies down, then it's OURS.

At the moment our local politicos are accusing each other of rubber stamping this insult to the people of Hull. We await further revelations, but expect none from the local media. Off to the lodge with you all!
There is a firm of coffee vendors that is advertising its product on the telly at the moment by telling how kind it is to the coffee growing communities. I never believe this sort of propaganda. I'm assuming the fair trade movement is making inroads into its profits.
Anyway this particular outfit is boasting of its collaboration with the Rain Forest Alliance, lovely name. So off to the world wide web to learn about the Jolly Green alliance; OH, OH, OH! it's a greenwash scam. It's one of those PR outfits paid to shout louder than the objectors and drown out their protests. There's another bunch called Conservation Internamtional that whores for some of the most evil organisations on the planet; Monsanto, McDo...., Exxon Mobil. It must be cheaper to throw money at these professional liars and tricksters than to ease up on the destruction of the planet.
I don't believe the stuff that these thimble-riggers spew out, but I have to admit as well to a degree of scepticism about the whole fair trade business. Just as protest movements are always riddled with police spies and provocateurs, so I expect any organisation that threatens unbridled profit-making to be subject to subversion and manipulation.
What little faith I had in the fair trade movement was quickly dissipated when I picked up a leaflet listing fair trade outlets in my area. On that list was one multinational corporation that cheats and mistreats its employees, cheats its suppliers and lies to its customers. In addition I'm told its product is crap. It was, at the time (maybe still is), behind the eviction of indigenous people from a fertile coffee producing area in Mexico. And, surprise, surprise! It funds Conservation International. I hate to advertise - let's just say it's a coffee peddling outfit called Ahab's, or something like that.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

In dramatic contrast, in the neoliberal phase after the breakdown of the Bretton Woods system in the 1970s, the US treasury now regards free capital mobility as a "fundamental right", unlike such alleged "rights" as those guaranteed by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights: health, education, decent employment, security and other rights that the Reagan and Bush administrations have dismissed as "letters to Santa Claus", "preposterous", mere "myths".
"Politics is the shadow cast on society by big business," concluded America's leading 20th century social philosopher John Dewey, and will remain so as long as power resides in "business for private profit through private control of banking, land, industry, reinforced by command of the press, press agents and other means of publicity and propaganda".
Professor Noam Chomsky (via Angry Arab)

Saturday, October 11, 2008

'The Little Mommy Cuddle ‘n Coo dolls feature realistic baby sounds including cooing, giggling, and baby babble with no real sentence structure. The only scripted word the doll says is “mama.” There is a sound that may resemble something close to the word “night, right, or light.”'
Claim Fisher-Price, but American Christians (you know the type)know better. That doll says "Satan is king", and "Islam is the light".

Wal-Mart is removing the dolls from its outlets, possibly to forestall an affray with the talking Jesus dolls.

Thursday, October 09, 2008

I've heard a rumour that sporting folk who place a losing bet at the bookies can now demand that the government pays them out as if they'd won. I'm sure that can't be true - can it?
A neat summation I read in Gary Trudeau's "Doonesbury" strip today,
" ... privatizes profit but socializes risk".
Maybe it's not original, maybe it's common currency in certain US circles, but it's new to me.
"On run-of-the-mill stories too, the demand from the news desk was the same: could I get an official source to confirm the story? It happened even when I had seen something with my own eyes. And an official source meant an Israeli source. It felt almost as if the Israeli government and army had to give their seal of approval before a story could be published"
Jonathan Cook
“Editors hardly ever need to bare their teeth against an established journalist because few make it to senior positions unless they have already learnt how to toe the line.”

There's more on Organised Rage.

Saturday, October 04, 2008

Return of the Eminence Grise
... or should it be Eminence Verte Avocado? Welcome back Don Niccolo Machiavelli. Now Gordon has allowed you within striking distance he'll probably hand you the knife to insert between his shoulder blades. Or do you intend to leave that foul deed to the Milliband Tendency who are taking over the cabinet piecemeal?
Will you be reciting your mantra as confidently as ever, "Deregulate, Deregulate!" Maybe that's why you're leaving the EU job, now they've seen the end result of your blueprint for chaos. But Gordon wants you, I wonder why. Maybe he's thinking of old Don Vito's advice to keep one's friends close, but one's enemies closer.
I wonder, weren't the super-rich of the mainland Europe as free with their largesse as your rich and powerful patrons back home? Surely Bela Lusconi could have found some dirty work for you at Strasbourg, in return for the freedom of his Sardinian condominium? Or maybe he saw someone as devious and corrupt as himself, that is, someone against whom a ten foot bargepole wasn't long enough to prevent contamination.
And Gordon let you back in.

... and Flogger Kelly - out of the cabinet for the sake of her family, and on notice to quit Parliament altogether. I wonder how long she'll be doing the domestic thing. How long before she puts her inside knowledge to good use in the job market. Then it'll be, "Stuff the family, I'm gonna get rich!"

Friday, October 03, 2008

Joe Kinnear addresses the jackals of the press (not for the faint-hearted)

Thursday, October 02, 2008

I'm looking at this bloke and wondering who he reminds me of - oh aye, Donald Fagen.
But I'm also listening to what he's saying, and that reminds me of Chuck D. - "Don't Believe the Hype".

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

A quote from an article by Senator John McCain in a magazine for actuaries, just published -
"Opening up the health insurance market to more vigorous nationwide competition, as we have done over the last decade in banking, would provide more choices of innovative products less burdened by the worst excesses of state-based regulation ..."

Food for thought there.
In fact, some of the most basic details, including the $700 billion figure Treasury would use to buy up bad debt, are fuzzy.

"It's not based on any particular data point," a Treasury spokeswoman told Tuesday. "We just wanted to choose a really large number."
(via Angry Arab)

Meanwhile back home the three main parties are banding together to give their combined, and unconditional, support to the incompetents and the fraudsters responsible for the meltdown. No-one demurs, no privy councillor sworn to maintain the status quo at all costs can demur. We are now without a parliamentary opposition at this time of "crisis" (their description, not mine). Bush and Paulson must envy our sellout politicans, and their unelected shadow government.