Thursday, 31 July 2014

Post Title Of The Month

Take it away, MacHeath...


Quote Of The Month

The irreverent LegIron on the perils of the modern dating game:
Yeah, it’s true, being able to name the actual beasties involved in STDs and having books describing the symptoms – with colour pictures and all – does tend to limit your sex life somewhat. I’m not at the stage of spraying women down with bleach or vigorously rubbing them with olive oil before touching them (well, not unless they insist) but I don’t think I’d be keen on kissing a girl who has tasted tadgers at a rate of ten a minute. Having to fill out a risk assessment and wait for the lab results would rather take the edge off the occasion.

Post Of The Month

It's not often this award goes to 'the other side', but Harry's Place is required reading for this one.

Why Did You Ever Tolerate It?

Borough lead member for neighbourhoods Arshid Mahmood said: “We have asked police for a greater presence and will approach management at the THOMAS drop-in facility to agree a process of moving people on.

“We will no longer tolerate such behaviour and are taking action against owners of hostels and houses of multiple occupation to reinforce the message.”
That’s nice. Were you happy to tolerate it before, and you are only now covering your shiny arse because someone’s gone to the papers, perhaps?
A Salvation Army spokesman said: “We work with some of the most vulnerable people in society. ..
Oh, please! Enough of this sophistry!

Your ‘service users’ aren’t vulnerable at all, they are the swearing, fighting, vomiting drink & drug-taking scum that are making life hell for the genuinely vulnerable children who have the misfortune to be within earshot…
… Our staff have been in contact with the local authority to ‘safe clean’ the area. We have taken steps to make service users aware of the feelings locally and to work out the best way of eradicating any problems.”
Bang ‘em up until they can behave like normal people instead of animals, maybe?

Wednesday, 30 July 2014

No, ‘Lancashire Telegraph’, No..!

The court heard NP Electricals was in financial difficulty when Mrs Hill was hired.
Owner Neil Pope had re-mortgaged his home to invest £20,000 to try to keep the firm he had been running for 30 years alive. Mr Courtney said although the firm had financial difficulty, Mrs Hill contributed to it being forced to cease trading.
The prosecution argued Mrs Hill was not experienced enough to do payroll and that she had ‘suffered enough’ in the three years it took to come to trial.
Kenneth Hind, prosecuting, said: “This has not been easy for Mrs Hill. She has had to move back home with her mother and come clean to her family, friends and her daughter. Her marriage broke down and she is truly remorseful for what she did.”
Well, that’s confusing. Mr Courtney was prosecuting, Mr Hind was defending.

And she had a hard time of it after she was caught, did she? Poor love!

What isn’t at all confusing is the predictable appearance of the famed leniency of the criminal justice system:
Judge Simon Newall gave a 16-month term, suspended for 18 months and 180 hours community service.
*sighs* And they wonder why people are beginning to take the law into their own hands.

Tuesday, 29 July 2014

And Another Addition To The School Curriculum…

Pupils in Newham can now learn about responsible dog ownership thanks to a national charity. The Dog’s Trust has appointed five new Education and Community Officers across the country - including Ruth Thomas, who has responsibility for six boroughs across east London.
Including Barking & Dagenham, whose local paper published exactly the same blurb, suitably amended for location…
Ruth and her two dogs, Fudge and Jasmine, will visit schools to promote safety around dogs and ensure children understand the responsibility of owning one.
Hmmm. I wonder when the first Muslim objections to dogs in the classroom will flood in?

Monday, 28 July 2014

Zero Tolerance Can Be Beneficial…

Mr McKeown, who has been headmaster at the school for the past eight years, said the academy is “consistent” in dealing with students who do not arrive in correct school uniform.

He said: “Students not wearing the uniform or refusing to wear the uniform in the correct way will be sent home to change.

“We do inspections around once a week,” he added. Mr McKeown said parents were notified if their children were sent home by text message and parents of Year 7 and 8 students sent home were telephoned before the student left the school.

He added: “We are setting the standards for this school and we are also preparing our children for the world of work.
“They are not going to go into the world of law or medicine or be leaders in industry wearing trainers or skinny trousers, they will be expected to dress smartly.”
/cheer Chav parents are, predictably, OUTRAGED!! that their spawn have been told ‘No’:
Emma Lester said her daughter, Renee Carroll, 14 and in Year 10, was sent home.

She said: “She has been wearing shoes exactly like the ones she had on for nearly four years with no problems. We live in Christchurch and they didn't care how she was going to get home.

“What is more important, a pair of shoes or the welfare of a child? Renee is supposed to be doing an English exam.”
When she can’t read or comprehend the school dress code? How’s that going to work out?

Sunday, 27 July 2014

” Many will write this off as a ludicrous proposal…”

Ellie Mae O’Hagan jumps the shark leek:
It’s time to end the English domination of Wales and Scotland, regardless of outcome of the referendum in September.
Oh, really? How?
To do this, I propose schoolchildren take part in compulsory lessons in Welsh and Scottish studies, during which they at least learn how to speak basic Welsh. I don’t see why not: Welsh is an official British language, the oldest language in Europe and the most common in Britain after English.
Ahahahahahahahaha! Gosh, is it April 1st already?

Where Should They Do Time, Mike? Azkaban?

Mike Weatherley (often on the right side right up until the last moment) has clearly been affected by the heat:
… as David Cameron's chief adviser on intellectual property, he has asked ministers to consider passing a law that would mean people "who steal online items in video games with a real-world monetary value receive the same sentences as criminals who steal real-world items of the same monetary value".
So…sod all, then? Even if they are repeat offenders?

Sunday Funnies...

*sighs heavily at No 3*

Saturday, 26 July 2014

Is ‘Flattening It With The People Still In It’ An Option..?

Councillors and town planners have held behind-the-scenes talks over flattening the Queensway Estate, which houses more than 600 people, in a major revamp of the heart of Southend, the Echo can reveal.

Ian Gilbert, deputy leader of Southend Council, said: “The council is looking at a number of options for the Queensway site.”
Because that could quite easily solve more of Southend’s problems than just those with housing.

”Bad dogs, bad dogs, whatcha gonna do, what ya gonna do when they come for you…”

Senior officers at Cleveland Police said they “deeply regret” the incident, on Penrith Road, which led to the woman being taken to Middlesbrough’s James Cook University Hospital.
I’m sure that will help her bite wounds heal so much quicker…
Next-door neighbour Jack Williams, 20, saw the drama unfold: “There was a lot of police cars and loads of people running around. The police came through our back as well, and were looking over the wall into next door’s garden. It was bedlam.

“We saw the police dog in her front garden. We told police that she was very ill and told them to go careful.”
Maybe you should have told the dog as well?
Assistant Chief Constable of Cleveland Police, Sean White, said he was “deeply sorry” for what had happened. He said: “Our main concern at present is for the welfare of the lady and her family, we deeply regret what has happened and we wish her a full recovery from her injuries.

“The dog has been removed from operational duties whilst an investigation takes place and the matter has been referred to the IPCC, which is mandatory in these circumstances.”

ACC White said that the “victim has the full support of Cleveland Police” and called the incident “unusual and unprecedented - the first such incident I have had to deal with in almost 30 years of service”.
Well, there’s plenty of colleagues who’ll give you advice, having been in that same ‘rare and unprecedented’ situation…

Update: The lady has since died. Will anyone be charged with manslaughter or criminal negligence?

Friday, 25 July 2014

"I'm Not Joinin' No B Ark, Man..!"

Remember this place?

Well....
It was a daring bid for freedom that could have come straight out of The Great Escape or The Colditz Story.
But the intrepid five who attempted to tunnel under a spike-topped 12ft metal fence using nothing more than pilfered cutlery were not plucky PoWs fleeing the Nazis – but Nottingham schoolboys trying to break out of their city academy.
If any of the youngsters tasted liberty, however, it was short- lived as the culprits were soon rounded up, and the already imposing security measures tightened up even further to thwart future escape efforts.
 /facepalm
Tracey Phillipson, whose daughter is a Year 9 pupil, said: ‘The fencing with security signs all over it does make it look a bit more like a prison than a school and I guess to some pupils that’s a challenge.'
You could say it's merely trying to acclimatise them to their likely future 'careers'..?
The school, which is in the deprived Hyson Green area of the city, is in ‘special measures’ after an inspection by the watchdogs Ofsted last year ruled it was ‘inadequate’.
It has suffered from high truancy rates, and pupils aged under 16 are not allowed out of the grounds without permission during the day.
Ofsted also noted in its report: ‘Students’ conduct, particularly outside lessons, shows a lack of respect for belonging to the academy.’
How (un)surprising...

Thursday, 24 July 2014

And When Are They Supposed To Fit This In?

Police have asked schools across London to warn pupils about illegal raves after the deaths of two teenagers with links to Croydon.
Is that going to be part of social studies? English? Maths?

Maybe chemistry…
In the letter, sent to secondary schools, sixth-form colleges and pupil referral units, Commander Letchford said: "As we approach the summer holiday period, some students may be considering their options to relieve exam pressure and may be attracted by the lure of an event such as a rave.

"It is important that those of us with responsibility for safeguarding young people do all in our power to prevent a further tragedy. The Metropolitan Police Service seeks your assistance with this by asking you to address your students, and their parents, on the dangers of attending such events."
If they haven’t figured out, from the headlines about the deaths, that it’s a risky choice, is the school going to be able to help?

And if they are the sort to take drugs & indulge in illegal raves (that often turn into mini-riots), why would we – meaning, we as a society – want to preserve their lives?

Our gene pool is better off for this dose of music-associated chlorine.

Wednesday, 23 July 2014

No Decisions Please, I’m A British ‘New Man’…

Stuart Heritage is driven to angst by….charity tokens. Yes. Really.
You're supposed to put these tokens in one of three boxes, each representing an individual cause. Conservatively, I must have spent a third of my life slumped in front of these boxes, agonising over which cause to pick. Should I give it to the dilapidated care home or the local postnatal unit? There's one here collecting money for beehives. Who do I like more, babies or old people? I certainly won't give my token to the beekeepers. But what about the documentary I saw that said we'll all die if the bees go extinct? Perhaps my token would do more good there. Yeah. That's what I'll do. Screw you, premature babies. God, did I really just think, "Screw you, premature babies"? I'm an awful person. On and on and on it goes. Eventually, withered and hungry, I'll give up. I'll press the token into a stranger's hand. "You look like a kindly fellow," I'll croak. "I trust you to make the right decision."
What a man of action you are!
It's also, broadly speaking, my attitude towards voting.
Well, I’m surprised. Not.
Call me naive, but it seems sensible to assume that an MP would be better at making important decisions than me.
Really? Well, actually, you may have a point. Frankly, I don’t think there’s much in it though!
I don't think I'm alone in thinking this, which is why Nigel Farage's newfound love affair with referendums is doomed to failure. This week, Farage declared that a Ukip government would hold regular public referendums for everything from foreign affairs to housing schemes. Direct democracy, he calls it. A massive pain, I call it.
Of course you do – thinking’s hard. Better to get someone to do it for you. Relieve you of that terrible burden of responsibility.
…really, I don't want that much of a say. Nobody does. That's what elections are for. An election is a genius act of delegation. I don't want to spend the next five years embarking on an in-depth series of work and pension spending reviews. That's why I went to the trouble of picking a representative to do it for me.
Hey, I want a say. So do lots of people. You speak for them about as well as those ‘representatives’ you seem to favour speak for….well, for you.

Tuesday, 22 July 2014

Another Progressive Demands ‘Diversity’ Be ‘Conformity’…

Julie Bindel, that is.
When I was a young lesbian feminist campaigning to overthrow patriarchy, what irked me most was the fact that some men would impose their own idiotic view of my sexuality on me, by asking if I would perform threesomes with them, or titillate them with a porny kissing display with my girlfriend.
Presumably after a good skinful? They’d need it, Gawd knows…
Today it would seem that, for a number of lesbians, dissatisfaction and anger at being viewed as a male sex toy has been replaced with the desire to become as badly behaved as they are, paradoxically in the name of equality. Last week the Washington Times reported that a lesbian, Tamara Yatkin, who was refused entry to a California strip club because she was not accompanied by a man, is suing the owners for discrimination on the grounds of gender and sexual orientation.
Well, yes. Shouldn’t this be welcomed by you?
I have no doubt that Yatkin was denied entry because of her gender and sexuality, and, in both law and principle, that makes it discrimination. But how have we got to a situation where some of us are trying to enter such bastions of male privilege rather than campaign against the sexual exploitation of women?
Because we aren’t all the same, and don’t all think alike?

We have free will, and that means we get to choose what concepts like ‘equality’ mean for us, rather than conform?
Is liberation tantamount to behaving like some lesbian version of Hugh Heffner? In these times of "choice feminism" and neoliberalism, it seems that the very basis of our political movement is being eroded and replaced with an "anything goes" attitude.
How very terrible. But…didn’t all the boring old straights feel that way when you came on the scene?

So…suck it up. Life is change.

Monday, 21 July 2014

Errrr, No. It’s Not At All ‘Unforseeable’…

Richard Taylor, senior coroner for East Lancashire, recorded a conclusion of death by misadventure. He said: “This is a completely unforeseeable set of circumstances that have arisen here. ”
What? It’s not like it hasn’t happened many times before, is it?
“Companies should give proper guidance as to how these chemicals should be stored and named.”
They do. Do you think these sorts of people bothered to read it?
“In this case, it appears that the person who decanted it has done for good reasons - to share it. ”
It’s never a good idea to put toxic liquid in a drinks bottle, is it?

Sunday, 20 July 2014

Gawd Bless 'Silly Season'...

Mrs Lonnon, who has been on safari twice, said she thought the cat looked like a leopard but that details were difficult to remember as she was so scared.
I take it by 'on safari', she means with Thompson Holidays, not trophy hunting with Ivan Carter?
Mr Tully believes he did not see a leopard. He said: “It didn’t look like a leopard, it was sleeker and smaller.
“It looked like a dirty puma to me.”
Thank god he didn't use 'cougar'. I hate to think the images that would have conjured up!
“It was the size of a puma but it had markings on.”
“My wife told me it must have been a big dog, but its movements were definitely those of a cat. I saw it for at least five seconds.”
I'd listen to your wife, if I was you. That's always sound advice.

Grammar - I'm Not Lovin' It...



What happened to plurals..?

Sunday Funnies...

Surely No 1 being 'It's not a very good idea'..?

Saturday, 19 July 2014

The Simple Answer Is ‘No’…

One resident asked officers: “Can you assure us there will be no reprisals? We have to live around here. These people come in from London, but we live here. Can you guarantee our safety?”
Well, when the police can’t even bring themselves to be honest about the motives of those involved…
Sgt Gary Lane said police were trying to find out why the men were in Southend. He added: “We don’t know why they were there.”
Ah, go on! Take a wild guess…
Hassan, 26, known as Big Hass, was stabbed twice on Monday, July 7, in York Road, Southend.
The well known red light district, you mean? The well-known place to buy (or sell) drugs? Gosh. How surprising…
Police said they had taken the unusual step to get special powers to carry out stop and searches on anyone in the area for six days and increased patrols.
Given the demographic involved here, then that must have given a few police diversity officers heart failure…

Your Portfolio Doesn’t Stretch That Far, Andrew…

Pendle MP Andrew Stephenson has called for a ‘full, independent inquiry’ into clashes between police and protesters
In Pendle? Blimey, I missed that..!
… in Lahore that has left eight people dead.
Errr…
Mr Stephenson was invited to Friday prayers last week at the Jamia Masjid Minhaj-ul-Quran Mosque, in Brunswick Street, Nelson, to talk about the incident.
That’s nice. Are there any other ‘communities’ that would like to invite an MP to take up foreign issues with the PM, I wonder?

Friday, 18 July 2014

Read My Lips…. No. More. LAWS!

Publishing sexually explicit pictures of former partners – known as "revenge pornography" – could soon become a crime, the justice secretary has said.


Chris Grayling said the government was very open to having a serious discussion about the practice with a view to taking appropriate action when parliament returns from the summer recess.
Then clearly, government has too much time on its hands. Time that could be better spent elsewhere.
The former culture secretary Maria Miller has called for a change in the law to tackle the "appalling" practice, suggesting the criminal justice and courts bill, currently being considered by parliament, could be the vehicle for it.

The Liberal Democrats have also called for legislation. An early day motion by the Lib Dem MP Julian Huppert tabled this week noted that "whilst the images are often taken with full consent, their dissemination is not".
So, it seems the issue is rather simple - if you don’t want pictures of you making the beast with two backs with your ex hitting the net, then: a) make sure you remain on good terms with your ex (maybe even vet the men/women you sleep with rather carefully, if that’s not too much trouble), or b) don’t take such pictures in the first place.

This has been a Public Service Announcement.

Thursday, 17 July 2014

The Power Now Wielded By The Single-Issue Loons…

The furore began when Richman posted an Instagram photo with the caption: "Had ordered this suit from a Saville Row tailor over a year ago. Think I'm gonna need to take it in a little …" He added the hashtag #thinspiration.
A fairly harmless Tweet? Whoa, not so fast! There’s always some loon with an agenda and time on his or her hands to make a drama out of the least little thing…
One Instagram user criticised him for using the tag, saying it "glorifies negative media self-imagery that being thin is better as opposed to any other body style" (the term can be used on social networks and blogs to celebrate unnecessary and unhealthy weight loss).
To say Richman responded ‘robustly’ to this is…well. See for yourself:
Richman responded by writing "DILLIGAF", which means "Does it look like I give a fuck?" To other critics he wrote, "Oh eat a bag of shit, dummy. No apology is coming. If it inspires someone to attain a healthy thinner body then that was what it was meant to do. Only fuckup it seems was your dad's choice to go without a condom," and "grab a razor blade and draw a bath. I doubt anyone will miss you."
I for one applaud you (despite the fact your show often makes me feel nauseaous).

But of course, such defiance of the single-issue whackjob’s pet cause cannot go unpunished, and the now-infamous Twitterstorm descended, as the original aggrieved party roped in all their fellow loons to punish the unbeliever.

And inevitably, Richman backed down.
The comments have since been deleted, as have Richman's subsequent apologies, where he wrote: "I've responded to internet hate recently with vile words directed at those hating me. I am sorry, I should know better & will do better."
It didn’t help.
Now the Travel Channel, which was due to air his new show, has postponed the airing of his new show. The network has not commented on its reasons for the decision, instead stating simply: "Travel Channel is postponing the July 2 series premiere of Man Finds Food."

Richman has made another public apology, issuing a statement to ABC News: "I've long struggled with my body image and have worked very hard to achieve a healthy weight. I'm incredibly sorry to everyone I've hurt."
You haven’t ‘hurt’ anyone (except maybe yourself). These people are not ‘hurt’, they are simply ideological opportunists who know that if they make enough of a fuss, they can – and will - really hurt certain others where it counts. In the pocket.

All for expressing an opinion they don’t agree with.

Free speech now seems to belong only to those without something to lose by expressing it.

Wednesday, 16 July 2014

So Much For 'Thinking Skills' Courses...

Unemployed Moore, who hopes to work in construction, is currently serving a nine month supervision order for stealing another expensive bike and had completed a ‘thinking skills’ course under a previous court’s direction.
I guess it didn't take...
She went on to say he was “remorseful” and whilst his thinking skills programme had not worked in this case, he might have walked away from other temptations.
And he might not, but on those occasions, wasn't filmed doing so.
Chair Mr Patterson told him: “Mr Moore you are a fortunate young man.
“Ordinarily we would send you to prison for this offence, however Ms Jatter has made a very eloquent defence of why you shouldn’t be sent to prison today.
“Ms Jatter has done a good job on your behalf, but this is really your last chance to avoid custody.”
*sigh*

Tuesday, 15 July 2014

Some Food For Thought For Mr Gove...

It's always entertaining to hear from the likes of Tom Utley, isn't it? The latest travail is a train ride that few will find all that remarkable:
From the flow of their conversation – or shrieking-match, to be more accurate – I gathered that the combatants were sisters, although when I risked a glance over my shoulder, I saw that they must have had different fathers, since one was white, the other of mixed race.
I’d say the white one, whose hair was pulled tightly back into a Croydon face-lift bun, was in her mid-thirties, while the other was in her late-twenties. But I may be wildly wrong. Enough to say that both faces bore the ravages of lives rough-lived, while their voices were indistinguishable, each sounding like Kathy Burke’s Waynetta Slob from the Harry Enfield Show.
By the standards of MacHeath's example, this was quite a tame show, with only Mr Utley's ears & fragile nerves assaulted...
By the time we reached my stop, everyone in the train – those who could understand English, anyway – was aware that one of the sisters had a ‘boo-i-foo, innocent little boy, wot you don’t deserve’, while the speaker who had questioned her sister’s worthiness to be a mother was to be permanently denied access to her angelic nephew, from that moment on.
Chavs. Don't we just love 'em?
As we rolled our eyes in mutual sympathy, two of the week’s news stories played over in my head. One was the advice offered to schoolgirls by the editor of the Tatler, Kate Reardon, that good manners are more important than good grades when it comes to forging a career.
The other was the warning from Professor David Metcalf, head of the Government’s Migration Advisory Committee, that the British school system’s betrayal of less academically inclined pupils is forcing employers to look overseas to fill low-skilled jobs. Too many school-leavers, he said, lack not only the rudiments of literacy and numeracy, but even the most basic skills to ‘look people in the eye and get out of bed’. As I listened to those shrieking harridans, I could understand all too well what both he and Ms Reardon meant.
And here we see the difference between 'Mail' and 'Guardian' journalists - both may want to improve the lot of the benefit classes, but only one thinks that not changing their behaviour is perfectly OK.
Everyone accepts that grammar schools offer a brilliant start to clever children. But isn’t it also possible that separate schools, geared specifically to dinning the three Rs, basic manners and vocational skills into the unacademic, would serve the underclass far better than comprehensives?
Who'd we find to teach in these schools, and what would we have to pay them..?!?

Monday, 14 July 2014

They Don't Make Reporters Like They Used To...

Mr Gambardella said: “We do try and take a certain level of responsibility. We don’t sell the burger to anyone under 18, and if someone’s been drinking we don’t let them have it.”
I think you might need to add to your rules...
Mr Barratt took a bite and minutes later suffered severe stomach pains which increased.
He lost the feeling in his hands, his legs were shaking and his eyes rolled back in his head.
And within two hours Mr Hendy was suffering similar problems, following his colleague to hospital.
/facepalm
Mr Barratt said: “It was hard to walk. I needed to drink milk to neutralise the burning, which was hard because I was hyperventilating so much my hands had seized up.”
Mr Hendy said: “I was in so much pain I was telling people I felt like I was dying.
“It’s embarrassing but it felt that bad.If you’re thinking of trying this burger for a dare, just don’t.”
The old guard of Fleet Street would have had a bottle of whisky (or three) and been right as tuppence by dinner time.

H/T: S Weasel

Saturday, 12 July 2014

Does 'Socialist Worker' Have A Point..?

It's OK, I've not been hacked, I'm just coming back to this story again. Or, more specifically, the furore over the article about it in 'Socialist Worker':
A left-wing newspaper mocked the death of an Eton schoolboy who was mauled on an Arctic expedition. The Socialist Worker claimed the incident was ‘another reason to save the polar bears’.
'Gosh, the 'Socialist Worker' is run by embittered morons, well I never..!' said absolutely nobody.

But it's entirely possible that class did indeed play some tiny part in this. Take the words of the BSES director:
Pearson told the inquest in Salisbury, Wiltshire: "This is not a fly-by-night organisation. We tasked a high-court judge to carry out an independent inquiry ... we are absolutely an open book."
In what way is the fatal overconfidence & disregard for rules and procedure shown in this sad tale not a hallmark of such an organisation, then?

And just how does hiring another ivory-tower idealist with the 'right' surname & school background help matters?
Pearson, formerly a commandant at the Royal Military Academy, at Sandhurst, said: "What we are putting in place is more training which may reflect better the situation they may find themselves in – getting people tired, getting their heart rate moving faster, providing distraction and getting them to fire the appropriate distance.
But it's going to be down to the individual and how they respond to stress. Some are better than others."
Once upon a time, we could count on a military man to have all those qualities already, or be washed out of Sandhurst.

Once upon a time, one could leave one's heir in the hands of any establishment figure in a wilderness and be confident he'd be home soon with a few tales to tell and no parts of his anatomy missing. Because the men in charge would have been experienced and competent.

They would have understood firearms, not read a manual or two and thought 'Job's a good 'un! Hope I never have to actually, you know, use the bally awful thing for real..'.

They developed survival skills, rather than comedy moustaches:


Class, it seems, is not what it once was. It's been treated to the dilution that marks so many of our once-great institutions. Something the likes of the writers of rags like the 'Socialist Worker' should be cheering on, surely?

We will have to wait for a conclusion, though. It seems the parents have hired a QC who plans to finish the job of eating the hapless team leaders alive that the polar bear started:
Mr Singleton decided to adjourn the hearing after listening to legal submissions, including from Lizanne Gumbel QC, representing the Chapple family.
Ms Gumbel, in submissions yesterday and this morning, told the coroner Horatio’s parents, GP Olivia and surgeon David Chapple wished him to consider the issue of “neglect” in his conclusion.
I think 'sheer hopeless overconfidence and criminal incompetence' would be a better consideration...

Our Thin (Skinned) Blue Line, Again…

The incident happened on Boxing Day last year when Ms St Phorose was travelling through Shepherd's Bush, west London with her fiance Russell Shrimplin and their son Oliver, eight.

Mr Shrimplin, 51, a TV cameraman, was driving their Audi A6 when the couple say a man ignored a red light at a pedestrian crossing and stepped in front of them with a buggy.

Mr Shrimplin was forced to make an emergency stop and Oliver was thrown forward and hurt his neck. Ms St Phorose shouted 't**t' at the man through her open window and her comments were overheard by two policemen standing nearby.
Who then arrested said twat for endangering a child (since jaywalking is sadly not illegal), right? Wrong.
Ms St Phorose was taken to Hammersmith Police Station in a van where she says she was left outside for 20 minutes.

After finally seeing the custody sergeant, Ms St Phorose was given a £90 fine but refused to pay it and instead was charged with a Section 5 public order offence of causing alarm or distress.
Hmmm. Did the idiot jaywalker not cause ‘alarm and distress’ to Ms St Phorose? Or was he from an established identity group, so the police felt they’d be better off tackling a mother with child instead?
Pc Richard Harvey told the court he arrested Ms St Phorose because she refused to give him her details, but she and her fiancé dispute that.

Pc Harvey said: 'She was very angry and kept saying she called the man a t**t because he was pushing a child into the road and repeatedly said the word t**t very loudly and there were pedestrians around.
All of whom were probably wondering just why the twat of a policeman was arresting a mother for using language they wouldn’t even blink at…
'I asked Ms St Phorose for her name and address because I thought it could be dealt with sensibly but she refused.

'In the end, I arrested her and explained why - saying it was for a section 5 public order act because she was causing distress and alarm to passersby. I put her in handcuffs because of our failure to communicate.'
No, you didn’t.

You arrested her and put her in handcuffs because you picked on a target who wouldn’t back down and toe the line you had arbitrarily drawn, and who made you look like the sort of uniformed bullyboy you clearly are.

All in front of an audience of the public who, if they were ‘distressed and alarmed’, certainly weren’t made so by Ms St Phorose’s salty language, but by yet another example of lazy, overbearing policing.
Six months later, the case has now been thrown out by City of London Magistrates, who ruled that she had not caused alarm or distress.
And she’ll now pursue a complaint against the Met, which I hope she wins.

Because there’s no place in a modern police force for people like PC Harvey.

Friday, 11 July 2014

This Is Why We Can’t Have Nice Things…

An alpaca trekking business has had to shut after yobs hurled rocks at the terrified animals.

Jackie Kendall, 51, from Noak Bridge, transformed an old play area at Wat Tyler Park, Pitsea, into an enclosure for Oreo, Fudge and Valliant, but it proved to be an easy target for vandals. The enclosure was also not secure, meaning dogs regularly found a way in.
Lovely! Meanwhile…
A gang of teenagers surrounded a man and battered him with bottles and fence posts in a vicious attack. Neighbours said the teens ripped off their shirts and were screaming “like animals” as they laid into the man when he asked them to keep the noise down.

Two other neighbours were also attacked, after they came out to help. A 21- year-old man suffered a cut to his head, while a 24-year old man had a cut to the right side of his head.
Well, it is Pitsea. And the police?
Essex Police are appealing for anyone with information to contact Det Con Angela Toppin at Basildon CID on 101.
Maybe if you’d got off your backsides and attended the scene, you’d have caught a few, eh?

Thursday, 10 July 2014

A Worthy Successor To The ‘Thinking Skills Programme’..?

Recorder Raymond Herman described Arthur’s behaviour as “disgraceful”. He added: “This is a man who clearly has problems managing his temper.”
Arthur was sentenced to do 80 hours unpaid work and will be subject to supervision by the probation service for 12 months.
He must also take part in the Peaceful Solutions Programme, together with paying a £60 victim surcharge.
Presumably, the ‘peaceful solutions’ sought to resolve issues with your plumbing don’t entail threatening the workmen who turn up to fix it with a knife, because you’re having a bad day..?

Wednesday, 9 July 2014

Tune Time: "Coast to coast, LA to Chicago, western male..."

Lyrics that will resonate with anyone of music-appreciation age in the 80s, I'm sure...



It is, of course, Sade and 'Smooth Operator', which in 1984 was EVERYWHERE!

I remember switching radio channels three times during the course of a day & within 5 minutes, it was playing on each channel. The last song I remember being so ubiquitous was 'Summer Lovin' from 'Grease' during one long, hot summer.

Good times...

Risk Assessment: Yr Doin' It Wrong...

Richard Payne told an inquest into the death there were "deficiencies and failures" with their equipment.
Not least with his leadership.

Were this another time and place, he would be expected to retire to his study with a brandy & a revolver...
Speaking at their son's inquest, Olivia and David Chapple said they had examined a risk assessment document with their son before he left for the expedition in July 2011.
My heart, small shrivelled thing that it is, breaks for them. Because what they were looking at wasn't a risk assessment at all. It was just a well-meaning piece of paper.

They had a plan. But, it seems, they had no plan for when the plan failed.
Richard Payne, chief leader of the expedition, told the inquest: "My intention was that all young explorers and leaders would have a pen flare.

"It was only when we landed at base camp... that I discovered there wasn't enough pen flares to equip everybody on the expedition."
Mr Payne said he had changed the original trip wire from fishing line to a heavy duty braided fluorescent cord as the previous system was "going off too easily".
"There was a shortage of stakes on to which the trip wire mechanism is attached," he said.
"There was a shortage of the small brass sear, which is a trigger for the device.
"There may have been some shortage of the trip wire itself."
Mr Payne said he met with base camp leaders to come up with a solution and decided to use a safety pin in the device to act as the trigger. The camp sites were also changed to be triangular in formation to make up for a lack of mines, with Horatio's group having three mines instead of four situated around their site.
Jesus wept!
Assistant Coroner for Wiltshire and Swindon Ian Singleton asked: "Were you satisfied with the safety aspect of the trip as a whole?"
Mr Payne replied: "The three mines was the only downside, otherwise I was happy."
Are you happy now?

Tuesday, 8 July 2014

The Criminal Recognises What The Recorder Can’t…

Duncan Phillips, defending, said Burrows recognised the theft was her responsibility and that she would have to be punished.
Well, when you’ve ripped off the firm that employed you to an extent that four other workers have had to be made redundant, who couldn’t recognise this?

Oh. Right.
Recorder Raymond Herman sentenced her to 16 months in prison, suspended for two years and ordered her to do 200 hours unpaid work.

He told her: “There is no doubt that you deserve to go to prison.”
So…why didn’t she?
… he was drawing back from jailing her because her daughters would suffer and the punishment would not directly benefit her victims.
OK, a) that’s a shame for them, but that’s something she should have considered, and b) wouldn’t it?

If I’d lost my job through someone else’s criminal conduct, I’d have benefitted immensely from knowing that society took that conduct seriously, and doled out an appropriate punishment…

Monday, 7 July 2014

Good. That’s Exactly What Should Happen.

Campaigners said they feared that many of the migrants, who refuse to formally apply for asylum in France in the hope of smuggling themselves onto lorries bound for Dover and applying for leaving to remain in Britain, will be declared “illegal” and face deportation out of France to other European countries or their country of origin within 48 hours.
Which is, of course, a problem for such campaigners, as the existence of these camps & shanty towns provides them with opportunities to do what they do best – agitate, whinge and campaign.
Lisa Furness, a Bristol-based artist who had been photographing daily life in the camp, said: “The alarm was raised and suddenly it was pandemonium. One moment people were sleeping, the next hundreds of people were trying to save themselves.
"Lots tried to climb over the fences to escape while others tried to push the police back. But they were pepper sprayed and it was pretty clear they were facing overwhelming force.”
Well, hurrah! At last. I only wish we had the gumption the French have shown.

These are not refugees, to whom we (arguably) owe a duty of care - just economic migrants who are trying to game the system, exactly the same sort of people who are currently using children to get around similar controls in the States.
Two weeks ago Adam Joseph, 45, a South Sudanese farmer who paid $6,000 for a hellish journey across Africa and the Mediterranean to reach the Channel, was shot in the back by a suspected far right vigilante as he slept in the food distribution area.
The Independent found him wandering the streets. He said: “It’s scary for us when this happens. We are not bad people so why send in these robo-cops while we sleep? We get shot at, we get raided. Just let us live with a little dignity while we try to go where we want to go.”
We don’t want you here. You contribute nothing to our society. You have to rights to come here as anything other than a tourist.
Mateus Ferri, a volunteer who works with the refugees, said: “This is a shame for the whole of Europe, including Britain and France. These people came here with a dream of a new life and a dream of freedom. And yet today we have this evacuation which looks closer to the Second World War than the 21st century. It makes me angry.”
England is not the Land of Milk and Honey. We cannot take in the world’s poor. We don’t want to take in the world’s poor.

The fact that there are people like you trying to force us to do so makes me angry.

Parish Notice

Posts will be light - i.e, 1 or maybe two a day, one every three days over at 'Orphans' - for the next three weeks, as I'm stupidly busy at work (due to someone else's holiday scheduling foul-up!) & so when I get home, all I want to do is flop on the sofa and sleep!

Hence why replies to comments have been irregular of late.

 Normal service will resume as soon as things are less manic in August.

Sunday, 6 July 2014

Chest Of...What?



/facepalm

That's The Good News. The Bad News Is...


...it's going to be in a Op Yewtree investigation!

William Tell Tribute Act – Yr Doin’ It Wrong!

The incident happened when he was spotted by a police officer in a vehicle on Beacon Fell, in the Forest of Bowland.

The officer retreated to a safe distance when the man drove off at speed. The incident, which started around 2.30am on July 1, resulted in the vehicle being pursued.

A spokesman for Lancashire Police said: “He was eventually stopped on the M55 eastbound link to the M6 southbound.

“The man then discharged the crossbow which caused him to suffer a serious head injury. He was taken to Royal Preston Hospital.”
Maybe he just didn’t have an apple handy?

Sunday Funnies...

I used to love at least two of these shows..!

Saturday, 5 July 2014

“Freeze, Dirtbag! T-Shirt Squad!!”

Police have launched an investigation following complaints that a Skegness business is selling clothing that contains offensive language.
And the newspaper helpfully prints a picture of such foul garmenture, beneath a warning, of course:
WARNING: Clicking to the second image above reveals an image of the T-shirts that may be considered offensive.
If you click it, as I did, you’ll see nothing that will really shock you. Nothing that’ll make you belly-laugh, either, but that’s tacky seaside resort merchandise for you.
… town council officials were sent a letter from a visitor to the resort who claimed that T-shirts with ‘filthy’ slogans were being sold outside businesses on the town’s high street.
And instead of reading it and shrugging and throwing it in the bin, they felt that they had to DO SOMETHING! about this. Or rather, someone else should DO SOMETHING! about this.
A spokeswoman for Lincolnshire Police said the force was aware of the issue and would be looking into the matter.

“The issue of potentially offensive T-shirts was raised at a recent town council meeting,” she said.

“Skegness is a family resort and anything that may cause offence to families will be unwelcome in the town.”
The police don’t get paid to deal with ‘unwelcomeness’, they get paid to deal with crime. Are these T-shirts illegal? If not, politely tell the councillors that it’s not a matter for you.

After all, everyone else has:
Chad Saratoon, senior officer for Lincolnshire Trading Standards, said: "Unfortunately, we don’t currently have any powers to take these products away because of what is printed on them.

"We would only take action if they were infringing trademarks or copyright."
What is it with the NuPuritans we elect these days?

You Know That Old Joke About Killing Your Parents & Pleading For Clemency Because You’re An Orphan..?

Well, turns out it really works, thanks to the sort of bewigged cretins we have on the benches these days:
A man whose pregnant partner was killed by their two pitbull-type dogs has been given a community order and told to do 280 hours of unpaid work.
Deputy district judge Tim Spruce told Horner the case "crossed the custody threshold" but said he felt it was not appropriate to jail him given the personal loss he had suffered with the death of his partner.
I guess there must have been other extenuating circumstances?
Prosecutor Vincent O'Malley told the court that two social workers had visited the house in July last year and Horner told one of them: "Shut it or I'll set the dog on you."
He said that Horner told the other social worker, who was eight months pregnant at the time: "What you looking at? Wait until I get the dog and see if you continue looking at me like that."
Oh, yes. This is a man who deserves clemency, all right. No wonder the judge was so lenient…
Sentencing, Spruce said the legislation was designed to protect the public from certain breeds, because "these animals are inclined to be unpredictable in nature and often with devastating consequences".
The district judge said: "That unpredictability, those consequences, could not be more solemnly illustrated than in the unique and tragic circumstances of the case before the court today. Two dogs with no previous recorded history of difficulty, danger or harm have set up their owner in circumstances which may never be entirely clear."
Exactly how have two brainless mutts ‘set up’ their owner?
He said he was satisfied the defendant did not know the dogs were banned but also that he made no effort to find out.
He said Horner was ambivalent to the possibility of the risk they posed.
Well, actually, I don’t think he was ambivalent – it seems he relished the risk they posed. At least to other people.

Humankind Rape Activists Cannot Bear Very Much Reality…

This morning, there was consternation among anti-rape campaigners when the attorney general, Dominic Grieve, was reported to have said that if "more difficult [rape] cases" are brought to court there will likely be more acquittals and a consequent fall in the conviction rate for rape.
Why so? He’s merely stating the truth.
Our concern was how his comments might be understood – was he suggesting that difficult rape cases shouldn't be prosecuted?
No-one sensible could read it like that. Only activists with a one-track mind and a desire to ensure that their ideology gets front-page attent…

Oh. Of course.
… this work has too often turned on a close examination of victim behaviour and credibility.
Well, yes. Of course it has. Most of these cases happen in private, it’s a ‘he said, she said’ situation. But you know all this.
What can be implied by caution around bringing difficult cases is a belief that inevitably when the story is told in court, juries with prejudices will acquit. But, in fact, progress is being made here too. In court, there are specialist sexual violence prosecutors trained to argue the strongest possible case and to challenge the use of rape myths by the defence. Judges are accustomed to directing juries as to what is admissible and what the law says about rape and consent. But there is more to be done.
*sigh* Of course. There always is, isn’t there?
We urgently need compulsory sex and relationships education in schools, which deals with consent, respect and equality, mirroring perhaps the excellent Home Office campaign aimed at teens, This is Abuse. In addition, we need to ensure there are specialist support services available to women and men who have suffered sexual violence when they seek help, and whether or not they report it to the police.
And we have both of those things.

What are these two women really demanding? More of the same? Jobs for the girls?

Friday, 4 July 2014

She’s At It Again…

…and by ‘she’, I mean of course, Camila Batmanghelidjh:
“The kindest thing I can say about successive Prime Ministers is that they have been hijacked by more demanding agendas, but isn’t hundreds of thousands of children being harmed and left without help important enough? Some politicians privately say that the system is too big to fix, but we don’t say cancer is too big to fix.”
True enough.

Of course, we don’t have doctors who claim that certain cancers are cultural and so should not be treated the same.

We don’t have doctors who say that this poor cancer has had a tough life and so shouldn’t be ‘punished’ with chemotherapy.

We don’t have doctors who are told by their superiors to play down the incidence of cancer to avoid frightening the population.

There aren’t any parts of the body that doctors are too frightened to look at and so become ‘no go areas’.
“The NSPCC talks about hundreds of thousands of maltreated children of whom only a fraction are being helped, but I can’t guess the figures, and that is one of the things we must do — find them, count them, help them. We are an uncivilised nation if we don’t because we have the resources.”
No, no, Camila, you’ve got it all wrong!

It’s because we are a ‘civilised nation’ that we have this enlightened attitude, and don’t interfere in cultural practices, always tiptoe around difficult ethnic issues, excuse atrocities because these poor people have a right to their own lives, and so forth!

Coming A Cropper…

Sentencing Cropper, Recorder Philip Curran said Alton had been getting him to ensure Mr Worthington had 'got the message' about the statement. He added that Cropper simply didn't realise how serious the situation was.

He said the defendant had been out of trouble for 13 years, was working and supporting his family financially.
Ummm, isn’t that what you are supposed to do? Why expect credit for it?

Manhunt!

The attacker of a 14-year-old boy is being sought by police.
And what did this dastardly miscreant do? For clarification, I’m talking about the assaulter, not the assaultee…
The boy, from Westcliff, was grabbed on the neck and shouted at by an elderly man on the number seven bus near to the Anne Boleyn Pub, Southend Road, Rochford, at 3.20pm on April 11. Police enquiries so far have failed to find the man pictured, who is described as being aged over 60, balding, wearing a blue shirt, dark blue gilet, brown leather shoes and cream jeans.
Hmmm. Anyone wondering just why police should be bothering with such a non-issue? Or what prompted the gentleman to take such action?

Thursday, 3 July 2014

And They Say There’s No Justice…

A mum-of-three (Ed: an appellation that always galls – she’s bred three children, that doesn’t make her a ‘mother’…) who converted her family’s home in to a drugs den has narrowly avoided jail.
How..?
Laurie Pearce, from Somercotes in Laindon, told a Basildon Crown Court judge that she grew 103 cannabis plants for personal use after a small batch of seeds got out of hand.
/facepalm
However, Judge Ian Graham dismissed her excuses, and sentenced her to 18 months in prison, suspended for 18 months, and 150 hours community service.
He said: “It is extraordinarily stupid for someone who says they care so much about their children to get involved in growing drugs.”
Her sob story must have been awesome
Mark Savage, mitigating, said Pearce, 35, worked part-time as a cleaner and did not have money for drugs, so decided to grow her own.
The court heard she had started drinking and using drugs as a teenager after her mother attempted suicide when she was aged eight. He said: “She gained her knowledge of growing drugs from the internet and it got out of hand. Her two mobile phones were seized and there was no evidence she was dealing drugs.
“There was no communication with parties dealing drugs, such as the Bush Boys who operate in Laindon. Similarly, there were no large quantities of cash in the house or dealer lists.”
Amazing that a part-time cleaning job gives you enough to keep three kids and two mobile phones, eh? Who’d have thunk it?
Judge Graham said: “You have three kids who depend on you, yet you decided to embark on a cannabis operation.
“You should have thought much more about them before starting this cannabis factory.
“You placed yourself at great risk of going to prison, which would have separated you from them.”
Which might have been the best thing for them. But only if it had happened when they were much, much younger.

By now, they have been raised in mum’s image, so we have three more mouths to add to the benefit bill in a few years time.

Calming The Fears Of The Populace…

Community leaders in Boscombe have reassured residents that the area is “still safe” after the spate of crime on Monday night.
Now, in certain areas, such ‘community leaders’ would be religious leaders, local businessmen, etc. Here, they are local politicians. And hey, if you can’t trust them, who can you trust?
Ward councillor Phil Stanley-Watts said it was particularly disappointing to hear of these developments given the recent efforts to regenerate the area. “It is very, very sad these events have happened here,” he added. “There is no place for these people in Boscombe.”
‘These people’? Well, goodness me, how very undiverse of you!
“I can assure people that police are doing all they can. Boscombe is one of the most policed areas in Dorset. ”
Hmmm, I don’t think that’s as reassuring as you might think it is.
Cllr Jane Kelly said: “I think the first thing to say is that they are isolated incidents and not symptomatic of something breaking out. “These things happen all over the place, all of the time. When it happens in Boscombe everyone throws up their arms.”
Yes, well, that’s a good thing, surely? Is it better to just shrug and accept it, then?
Cllr Chris Wakefield praised the quick police response to both incidents but stressed they were isolated incidents.
A phrase he picked up while questioning the police on their response times, perhaps?

I Guess It Is Indeed A News Story...


Timothy John Noonan, of Greenwood Avenue, Cwmbran had been found guilty to six charges against him and came before Newport magistrates for sentencing on Friday.
The 31-year-old was convicted of two counts of assault by beating against his then partner, two charges of causing suffering to an animal, namely his then partner’s dog, a threat to damage property and failure to surrender to police.
Nice chap, eh?
Defending, Steven Mock (Ed: !!!), said his client was “not a lost cause” and had always kept regular employment.
He said “He recognizes he has issues with alcohol and anger management.” Noonan was sentenced to 26 weeks imprisonment, to be suspended for two years.
That defence brief has a pretty appropriate name, it seems...

Wednesday, 2 July 2014

Someone’s Making Out Like A Bandit…

…and it’s not the poor old Southend Council ratepayer:
Workman have begun replanting trees at Victoria Gateway (Ed: oh, yeah, this place again…) in a bid to attract more people to the public space.
Trees, green areas and new seating will be added to the large open space outside Southend Victoria Station to encourage more people to gather and make access to the High Street clearer.
Surely those are two different, conflicting, desires? If more people gather, then how is access going to be clearer?

And why would you want people to gather there anyway, since it’s just a throughway from the station to the main street?
Mature trees were removed from the old Victoria Circus roundabout in a multi-million revamp of the key junction in 2011.
Yes, indeed, and when you’ve spent all that money laying all that concrete and paving, why not spend a bit more digging it all up again? After all, it’s from the Magic Money Tree, right?
Martin Terry, Southend councillor responsible for transport, said: “I am very pleased that this work is going to take place, which will make a big improvement to what is an important entrance into the town.
“We know that there has been much debate about this area since it was created, so the council have reviewed what is there and listened to local people.
“The plans that have been created follow numerous comments, feedback and widespread public involvement.”
Really? Not yet another huge payout to a consultancy company then? Well, that makes a nice cha…

Oh.
A ninth-month review of Victoria Gateway by John Dales, from consultancy Urban Movement, concluded trees, seating and lighting could be added to the open space to give it “sense of place”.
It also called for a “bolder public art installation” than statue “the Return”, which has failed to attract people to the area.
How odd. You’d think people would flock from miles around to see this wonderful installation, wouldn’t you?
Mr Dales suggested the skateboarders could be encouraged, rather than seen as a menace, or other activities, such as table tennis, be added to the area.
Great! Just what people arriving at Southend Victoria need, to fight their way past skateboarders and table tennis players to reach the dilapidated, shrinking high street to be hassled for spare change by the tramps, all the while dodging the mentally ill and their hapless carers.

Well, Karen, How Should Buses Operate, Then?

Neighbours have raised concerns over the safety of a bus route after an eight-year-old boy was knocked down on his bike.
Hmmm, have they really?
Karen Marchant, who has lived in Chesterfield Road for 26 years, said: “We have had a lot of issues with buses.

“They don’t need to be constantly coming up and down, it’s not a good environment for children. “I’m surprised there hasn’t been a bus accident before this.”
So…buses ‘don’t need to be constantly coming up and down’, eh? You mean, ‘sticking to a timetable’? Odd. I thought that was desired.

Maybe Ms Marchant isn’t a bus user, and doesn’t care one whit for those who have no choice?

Of course, in the comments, we get a far, far better standard of journalism, as usual:
LocalMummy2014 says...

I live just off of Chesterfield Road and my child attends the same school as the child involved in the collision...and as another mother I can only imagine what his family are going through right now! The 184 buses are frequent...which isn't a bad thing if people who don't have a car need to get somewhere. The real issue is the lack of Road safety the local children have! There are forever boys in small groups (between the ages of 7 and 16) on bikes in the middle of the road around here (none wearing helmets)...many a time I have had to swerve my car to miss them. They mess about in the road (not saying this is what happened in this collision as I wasn't there to witness it) with no regard for their safety. It could have quite easily been a car instead of a bus...so the answer isn't to reduce the buses or cars for that matter! Children need to be educated properly on road safety...And at the age of 8 I doubt the child had done his cycling proficiency test - the school he attends does it in year 5 and 6 and he is only in year 4. This tragic accident highlights the need for parents to educate their children to stay out of the road and keep safe. Fingers crossed he makes a full recovery!
I dunno about that, LocalMummy2014, I hear Darwin calling…

Doctor Michael Costello PhD Is Above The Law…

…because he cares so very much:
A university academic and wildlife specialist was convicted of criminal damage after breaking the window of a derelict shop in a bid to free trapped pigeons.
Yup, you heard that right – pigeons. The winged rats of the modern city.
He received a call on January 29 from a woman who said pigeons had been trapped inside an abandoned shop in Southend High Street for about five days.
Costello, 69, of Lewisham, travelled to the shop, which is owned by Levar Commerical Finance Limited. He took out tools to break a back window, but was spotted by a woman who phoned police.
He was arrested before he could free the birds.
Sterling job by Essex Police there, and I don’t often say that. Pity they didn’t taser the old fool too.

He got a six-month conditional discharge. But of course, he rejects that, wrapping himself in the cloak of self-righteousness as he does so.
Costello told the court that at the time of the incident he believed he had a duty to free the birds under section four of the Animal Welfare Act.
The magistrates clearly decided that was bunk. But fret not for the feathered vermin:
The court heard that a day later the building’s owners contacted the RSPCA to free the pigeons.
Which is what he should have done, rather than play vigilante.
He said: “I have been rescuing animals for about 40 years. “I was told the animals had been there for about five days.
“Usually, birds will die about this time if they do not have access to food and water. The way I see it, it is like seeing a dog at the point of death, trapped in a hot car on a summer’s day, and breaking the window to save its life.
“I don’t think I should have been prosecuted.”
Except they hardly were ‘at the point of death’, were they? So it’s totally unlike the situation you describe.
Costello carries a large trolley with him that contains a bird rescue kit, including a cardboard pet carrier and a net, in case he is called to an emergency.
He added: “I consider it a matter of duty for us to help distressed animals.
“I don’t necessarily consider this my life’s work, but I can’t just pass by when I see an animal suffering.”
No-one’s asking you to ‘pass on by’. Merely to obey the law.

Tuesday, 1 July 2014

In Today’s ‘Can’t Buy Publicity Like This!’ News…

An explicit novel linking Bexhill to nuclear war has been moved to the top shelf after a customer accidentally bought a copy for her grandson, thinking it was a spy novel.
Whew! That was a close one! Give him a nice Ian Fleming, there’s no sex in tho… Oh. Wait.
The book is published in paperback and as an e-book by London-based Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender publisher Paradise Press. It has sold 20 copies in the De La Warr bookshop and 15 more have been ordered.
James Cosens, bookshop manager, said: “As a local author, we are delighted to support David Gee by stocking his book.
“However, as the novel contains some explicit adult content, we thought it responsible to alert our customers to this before they bought it.
“This is in response to one of our customers returning the book on the grounds that she thought it was a spy novel suitable for her grandson.”
It seems this canny chap has hit on a great way of pushing his sales up to the giddy heights of treble digits:
This is not the first time the novelist has sparked controversy. In 2012 an anti-suicide campaigner complained about the cover of his previous novel The Dropout, which featured a car going over the cliff above the lighthouse at Beachy Head.
Mr Gee said: “Suicide is one of the themes of the book, although the car going off the cliff is actually a terrible accident towards the end of the story.”
I doff my cap to you, Mr Gee!

Careless With The Community Part 2795

Ryan Webber-Droy, 16 months, was attacked by the six-foot tall, 20-stone woman outside the HSBC bank.

Ryan’s mum, Katie Webber, 26, of York Road, Southend, was talking to him in his pushchair when the woman came from behind.

Ms Webber said the woman’s carer, who was nowhere to be seen during the attack, came over 10 seconds later and said “sorry, that’s just what she’s into at the moment” .
Oh? What a pity the mother in question didn’t punch the carer smack in the kisser and said ‘Cool! Me too!’.
Mother-of-two Ms Webber said: “I was in shock that someone had slapped my baby. Ryan was screaming in pain. I was so angry I started shouting.

“What if she had something in her hand like a screwdriver? This could have been more than a hit on the head. She shouldn’t be out if that’s what she’s into. Or if she’s out, her carer should be holding her hand.

“Anytime anyone went near Ryan for the rest of the day he flinched. I was really worried. He fell asleep soon afterwards and I had to keep checking he was still breathing.” Ms Webber took him to Southend Hospital fearing he had concussion. Doctors assured her Ryan had not suffered any lasting damage.
But it could so easily have been different. Still, I’m sure the authorities will work tirelessly to…

Oh.
Police are investigating the assault, which happened at about 12.30pm on Monday, June 16. They are trying to trace the carer in a bid to find out who she works for. They told Ms Webber they were unlikely to arrest the attacker, as she was mentally disabled.
So they are quite blasĂ© about mentally-deranged individuals attacking people in the street? Presumably if she gave them some grief via social media, they’d be on it in a flash…
But Ms Webber and her partner Ryan Droy, 26, said the carer should be held responsible. Ms Webber added: “Ryan’s family work in social services, with the elderly, disabled and people with mental health. One is on the board of the Care Quality Commission locally.

“They said if something can’t be done to the woman, then something should be done to the carer because she wasn’t doing her job properly.”
Quite. In the US, the lawsuits would already be flying. It’s the only way these people will ever take responsibility for their charges.

“It’s disgusting. What do we pay our council tax for if the police won’t come and help us?”

Julie, from Darwen, who was visiting a friend in the area, called the police and Twin Valley on Saturday evening. She said: “They moved out Friday night and left all the doors and windows open.
“There were kids toys and knives everywhere outside.
“I saw a child of about five or six running round outside with a kitchen knife from the house.
“The place was a mess and it was dangerous.
Me and three residents complained to Twin Valley, who said they wouldn’t come out.
“I called the police and they told me to call the council, or pick up the knives myself.”
Well, quite. Why are you so outraged at that? Are you a product of the generation that expects ‘the authorities’ to do every single tiny thing for you?

Of course you are. What am I thinking..?
A police spokesman said: “We did have a call about this on Saturday and the housing association was called and advised to attend to deal as police deployment was not required.”
Frankly, you should have charged them with wasting police time for the phone call!
Ian Bell, head of Twin Valley Homes, said: “We had a call about a tenanted property on Waterloo Close being unsecured and we responded immediately to make it safe.
“Our joiner didn’t see any children or knives as reported but we wouldn’t encourage any of our staff to get themselves in a situation where they could be hurt.
“That would be an issue for the parents of the children or the police to deal with.”’
How could they ‘be hurt’ picking up a knife to dispose of it? Unless they are so stupid they pick it up by the pointy end…