Lady Gaga is Controlled by the Illuminati

Take Me To Your Leader... Oh, Really?

Pretty obvious when you think about it. 

Maybe she’s one of the lizard people.  In fact the evidence is there for all to see

Still.  Gives some good fodder for the friday caption competition.  Here’s my stab

Have a go yourself.

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The Reason England Didn’t Get the World Cup?

When upwrapped, Champions gorge on the Swiss chocolate inside

So do we know yet the reason for England’s failed World Cup bid?  As ever, the answers are in plain sight.  Yes, the media was responsible – but not, as is claimed, the entirely legitimate and necessary Panorama and Sunday Times investigations.

If pious talking heads making hollow comments about the importance of a free media was a currency useful to FIFA, no doubt England would have bagged the bid.  As it was, England came dead last: securing only one vote (other than its own) among the 22-man FIFA Executive.

The lazy conclusion many have come to is that a combination of the Panorama exposé and a Sunday Times report, both into allegations of corruption of Executive members, punished England’s bid.  And the debate since has revolved around this faulty connection: asking the question of whether or not the BBC should have screened the Panorama programme so closely to the day the vote would take place.

The answer to this of course is yes: the BBC not only had a duty to report its findings but, as a professional media outlet, to publish them at the time most likely to be relevant – even if actually the BBC didn’t have much choice about the timing.

The fact is though that neither Panorama, nor any investigative reporting into FIFA’s mores, had anything to do with the eventual direction of the voting.

Indeed Issa Hayatou from Cameroon, who found himself accused in the Panorama programme, was the only foreign Executive member to actually vote for England’s bid.

Michel Platini said as much when asked:

“I don’t think this [programme] will have an effect, no – but I think what will affect the decision is the atmosphere going back a long time and what people have been writing about FIFA in the British press for many years.

“People who have already taken their [voting] decisions did so long ago, though I don’t know what they were.”

The reality is that Britons, through our media, have been fed a diet of hostility, negativity, cynicism and hypocrisy about FIFA and its Executive for many years.

To read the British press you’d be left in no doubt that everyone on that Committee, except for the Englishman, was a feckless, bureaucratic suit who was in it for himself.   On an individual basis the stories are too small to challenge.  The media know this, which is why they do it.  Anyone challenging such small charges is made to look like a shallow egotist, a control freak and a time waster.  So the subject cannot win.  And over time, their reputation is gradually eroded.

We see the same trick on all things European: no analysis or balance, just a steady slew of small stories that are not true and never corrected.  Whether it be bendy bananas, a heinous EU plan to strike England from the map or even the astonishing ‘EU plan to liquify corpses and pour them down the drain.’

So if we’re looking for someone to blame, by all means blame the media who now hide behind the legitimate Panorama and Sunday Times stories when they aren’t sneering at the excellent presentation made by the bid team as ‘Not English Enough.’

But of course it could just be that FIFA wanted something extraordinary for the World Cup’s of the future.  Qatar promised a legacy whereby their stadia would be dismantled and donated to developing countries, and Russia rightly and effectively demonstrated how the World Cup could be used as a strong catalyst for growth all over the World’s largest nation.  England had Milton Keynes,  a hick has-been, and a poisonous and jingoistic media more interested in salacious gossip than in the World Cup coming to our shores.

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Use Google Translator to Beatbox

pv zk bschk brap-brap

Click here and then just click ‘listen’ to hear some beatbox by your Google translator.

Nicely done!

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What’s Wrong With This Picture?

Döh!

Nothing much except Airdrie have gone and covered their match day programme commemorating Remembrance Sunday with a picture of Nazi, not Allied, soldiers heading off to war. 

The usual harbingers of doom are demanding resignations, but it’s only a mistake and considering the official story, could have happened to anyone.

It would be a shame (and an irony) if this light-hearted egg-on-face moment for a football club had the effect of curtailing the freedom to make occasionally awful, fist-chewing cock ups that the rest of us can poke fun at.

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Women: Can’t work with them. Can’t bury their bodies in daylight.

One of the few things me and Albert agree on is that you can’t beat the satisfaction of a good morning-visit to the loo.

That's You Told

If you’ve got a good, healthy routine it feels like your guts congratulating you every day.

Unless that is you work with a woman like this!

As if you’re going to give birth to a mud bomb at home if you can drop one in the office! 

Womens! Gah!

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Creationists 1 Alfred Wegener 0

Believe it.

Ever wondered how similar animals and plants get to be found on opposite sides of the ocean?

Had brain filled with nonsense about continental drift and plate tectonics?

Wonder no more

When the flood destroyed the world’s forests, it must have left billions of trees floating for centuries on the ocean.  These log mats served as ready-made rafts for animals to cross oceans. 

That will at least explain the modern dog having evolved changed randomly into the cocky thing he is today.

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The Difference between Government and Opposition 1.01

Hopefully No More of This

There’s an interesting set of e-mails we have seen between a member of the public and his MP.  It concerns a query the constituent had about the growing volume of speeding road traffic near his home, located on a road by a bay in a quiet corner of the country. 

His suggested solution?  Why not simply erect a road bridge spanning the entire bay, thereby negating the need for anyone to drive past his house. 

“It would save on carbon emissions,” he claimed, trying to twig the public spirit antennae of his parliamentarian.. 

I don’t know if the MP took much time to consider the impact building a 2 kilometre bridge would have on the wider public purse simply to satisfy his constituent, but he quickly endorsed the idea. 

After all, nothing to lose really, what with him being in opposition, so why not?  Traffic bad.  Bridges good and, you know, could create some jobs an’ stuff.  

It was the sort of thing he could sign up to on the basis of ‘standing up’ for his rural community which “London,” with its seemingly endless plethora of bridges, cruelly ignored.  This MP was a self-styled community champion, because it’s easier to campaign as one of these than it is a Liberal Democrat when most people won’t know what one of these is

The fiasco the party has now found itself in over tuition fees has of course highlighted the downside of this practice.  Rather than tell the NUS that their pledges were shallow, naive, self serving and not in the best long term interests of students or the country at large, Liberal Democrat MPs heartily signed up to it. 

Norman Lamb now says he is embarrassed that he did, and that he wishes he hadn’t signed it.  So why did he?  This is no less than the right hand man to the Deputy Prime Minister.  Was his judgement so lacking only weeks before his appointment? 

Vince Cable offered the explanation that the state of the public finances is much worse than he expected and necessitates a turnaround, but again, wasn’t he only months ago the font of all economic knowledge?  I must have missed his pre-election statement that the Lib Dem policy to scrap tuition fees could not, realistically, be afforded in the current economic climate.

The answer almost everyone will come to is that it was electorally convenient to pursue this policy in opposition but being in government changes all that.  And in doing so, for those people, undermines a lot of what the Liberal Democrats said before the election.  

Norman Lamb says that the new arrangements will be progressive, and better than before.  He’s right of course: it will be fairer, and the Coalition should be applauded for a policy which can be both fair and economically realistic in the current climate. 

There is no such thing as free education, and that we have to ask who should pay for University is because of how many more people go there than before: do we want only an elite go to University and have it paid by the taxpayer, or for a lot more people to go and have them pay for some of their tuition if they can afford to do so upon graduation?

The evidence suggests fees haven’t impacted against poorer kids going to University.  Students *get* that fees will be paid by a loan.  They make the smart economic judgement that they are going to be better off in the long term following a successful graduation; even with loan repayments.

Of course none of this solves the real problem in that the intelligent and capable young people in the UK are funnelled into the University system without any real alternative. 

Potential undergraduates need to be given a choice beyond academia, or Golf Studies.  Something which could lead to as great rewards as University and end the current culture we have where a lack of a degree equals failure, and success without a degree notable as some sort of win against the odds. 

Having an alternative and direct route into the business and manufacturing sectors provides the Universities charging fees necessary competition; provides high achieving would-be undergraduates with another option to further their talents, provides our manufacturing base with some much needed fresh blood and an answer to its question about how it addresses its skills gap. 

Result: wider skill base, less reliance on the City, and cheaper degree courses – which would be populated by people who actually wanted to read History, not by people who were vaguely good at it at ‘A’ level and have no option but to stay on the education conveyor belt.

Not a bad idea.  In fact it’s Lib Dem policy, or at least it was before the election.    

So we don’t have this, but we probably have a fairer deal for both students and the taxpayer.   Students from families with less than £25,000 income per year will be eligible for better grants.  Graduates pay nothing back until they earn more than £21,000, and graduates lucky enough to earn super money won’t be able to duck out of paying their fair share. 

It’s not the stuff of West Wing, but it is proper government making an improvement on what was before in difficult circumstances.  And it won’t be popular.  And because of this, if they were in opposition, the urge within the Liberal Democrats would have been to oppose it.

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The Reason Wayne Rooney is Leaving Manchester United

Thanks for the mammonries

Today’s newspapers are bulging with Rooney related speculation, leaving most people to try and read between the lines of half-truths and educated guesswork in the Sports press about the reason for the fairly shocking news that Wayne Rooney wants to leave Manchester United.

How he will leave, his destination thereafter and the reasons why he wants to leave are of course the subject of frenzied speculation throughout the football world.  Frustration at United’s lack of transfer activity?  Disappointment at how the club handled personal revelations?  It’s even been suggested that Coleen put her foot down about a playboy culture at the club: that Rooney’s affairs with prostitutes were egged on and encouraged by other players and that he only went along with it to fit in.  But whether you accept that this culture really exists at a club where Sir Alex Ferguson is manager is up to you. 

If only Rooney were to speak up himself.  But does Rooney’s silence not lend us a probable answer in itself?  For someone so outspoken and volatile, to sit at home while being the World’s biggest story and say nothing when be accused of lying and betrayal must be difficult.  Especially when usually you just walk up to a journalist or camera and have your say whenever you feel slighted.

Difficult, that is, unless the overall plan is basically indefensible in the eyes of the public.  After all what can anyone say to justify blatant and outrageous avarice?  Is not Rooney’s silence actually a nod to the chief motivator (and likely transfer destination) behind of all of this?

Parentage can change a man – so much so that Ferguson almost practically bullies players into ‘settling down’ as soon as they can.  But what if the birth of Kai has caused Rooney to undertake some serious soul searching and found that for all his flaws, the one thing Rooney can be relied on to do is be the provider for his family. 

What if Rooney sat down with his people, and looked at the cold facts of not the next five or ten years but the next 20 and 50.  A post-playing future – closer to him then he would prefer – as a bald, fat scouser of limited media savvy, is one unlikely to reap the future financial benefits enjoyed by, say, the Beckhams. 

But he has been told “If you want to live a Beckham lifestyle, you have to earn Beckham money,” and there’s only so much his numerous sponsorships with Tiger BeerPowerade, Nike, EA Sports, Coca-Cola can bring in.    Coleen does not have the independently sourced millions that Posh has and Wayne was never really a face-on-a-bedspread kind of guy.  The comfort of his and his family’s entire life will be determined in the next five years: and then, realistically, only through a contract that pays silly money.  A market-ignoring contract he can only get at one place

That it involves crossing Manchester will be felt as relatively meaningless: this is after all a new Dad and nothing will mean more than the future of his family.  If it means angering some people about what is, ultimately, only a game, than Rooney is more than stubborn enough to do it.  Especially if he is able to shift blame elsewhere and redirect supporter anger onto someone else

Blaming United’s financial situation and limited transfer activity for the desire to move will have a captive audience among the Old Trafford faithful and dilute the venom which he would only have had to share with others who have made the same choice anyway. 

In short, he can get away with moving to City by blaming the Glazer’s greed rather than his own.  He can do this because this is what football has come to: Money, and who has it.

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Campaign for an English National Anthem

Giddy as I am with quivering excitement about the possibility of being taken to see England play Scotland in the Six Nations, it raises that often awful prospect that a true Monarch-loving nationalist as myself faces whenever England face another British nation at sport. 

For reasons possibly of supposed characteristic hubris or arrogance, England insist on their ‘national anthem’ being God Save The Queen.  An admirable pursuit, obviously.  But theft is theft.  GSTQ is the British national anthem and should be reserved exclusively either for when the United Kingdom is competing or when, I grant you, when competing as the oddity that is Great Britain (i.e, UK sans Northern Ireland, as is the case in the Olympic Games).

When competing as constituent nations Scotland have their own anthem.  Wales a gorgeous, thumping, ditty of pride that is the very essence of what an Anthem is. 

Neither feel entitled to borrow GSTQ so why do the English feel they have a right to do so?

The same practice takes place in soccer.  And of course with it being football, it gives us the awful prospect of proud Scots and Welshmen booing God Save The Queen as some basically awful people of limited evolutionary heritage mumble out their determination to fight for our sovereign before capitulating in a typically flat manner. 

It cannot be allowed to continue.  Even our MPs agree, although only 24 of them.  Too busy expressing their stroppiness over Russell Brand, clearly. 

That is why I am starting a new campaign to promote a new English anthem. No longer should this subtle message that Britishness and Englishness are ostensibly the same thing be allowed to propagate – and in doing so only further the causes of celtic separatists.  A dangerous political game to play if indeed a referendum on destroying the Union is in the offing.

How depressing it would be for such a campaign to be steeped in high notions of Scottishness and identity on one side, and crude (and temporary) economic dependence on the other: with only harsh present-day realities of the economy to bind historic Britain back together. 

My first shot across the bow is letters to the people that matter at both the Football Association and RFU.  You can see a copy of this missive here

Let me know if you support the effort! Jerusalem ahoy!

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Worst Advert Ever?

More Parmesan, Dear?

That’s right Tim.  Spread that Cheese all over that thing. 

Is this the worst advert ever?

If you’re allergic to *shudder*, look away now. 

 
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