Wednesday, 30 September 2015

Post Title Of The Month

I think I might just as well award this in perpetuity to Anna Raccoon's blog! Here's Petunia Winegum with the title to a post about that bloody photo...

Quote Of The Month

Battsby on that bloody photo and its inevitable consequences....
"We no longer have to assemble in garment-rending mobs to loudly and openly mourn though; now we have the internet to do it for us. And all it takes is a tiny little trigger to get the tears flowing and the high-pitched shrieks synchronising into a cacophony of awful, self-pitying, stream of demands for relief devoid of reason. The border numbers released a few weeks ago had over half the country demanding controls on immigration. Now, however, the pictures of Aylan Kurdi have flipped opinion among the weak who are now demanding we fling our doors wide. People who normally don’t care much about anything and can happily spend hours revelling in video violence have come out of the woodwork all weepy when confronted with images of things they don’t normally have to deal with. Where is the common sense, the level head?"

Post Of The Month

Catemoore blasts the Criminal Justice System over too hasty arrests...

Let’s Play Catch 22, Special Disability Edition!

First, complain when there’s no access:
The Press revealed last October that a number of city centre shop entrances were not conforming with the Disability Discrimination Act, which states stores should be accessible for all.
By going out with Laura Branigan, a mobility scooter user, we found one of the shops letting down their customers was Thomas the Baker, in Market Street.
The store's large step made it impossible for Ms Branigan to go inside and staff said they were unable to put a portable ramp in place because the building is Listed.
However, the York-based company has changed its policy and says it now has a portable ramp, and staff are trained to serve disabled customers at the entrance.

Now, step 2, complain about the provision of access!
But the move has been met with a mixed response from disability groups in York, who still want more to be done.
Ms Branigan said: "This still emphasises the idea that you're different and they want to do something to help you.
"It's humiliating because it doesn't allow your full inclusion in society and treats you like a special case…"
Which you demonstrably are.

But hey, so long as you get to complain either way, I guess you’re happy.

Tuesday, 29 September 2015

You Mean Trendy Bullshit Doesn’t Produce Results..?

Shocked, I am, shocked
A school which told pupils not to worry about exams has been given the lowest possible Ofsted rating after pupils told inspectors ‘No one minds if we don't do our best work’.
When headteacher Rachel Tomlinson took over Barrowford School, in Lancashire, seven years ago, the school was given a new motto - "learn to love, love to learn" - which she says represents their emphasis on learning to be a rounded person as well as following the national curriculum.
School policy states that 'a child is not to be defined as naughty. It should be explained to the child that they have made a wrong choice.'
*chuckles quietly*
Chris McGovern, himself a former head and chairman of the Campaign for Real Education, said "This school has used its pupils for an experiment and should hang its head in shame.
"Children and their parents have been led to believe that these child-centred teaching methods are the way forward but the fact is they are creating a generation of school leavers who are unemployable."
Well, agreed, but then, it’s not like top Ofsted-rated comps are doing all that much better in that regard, really…

Why, It’s Like* Being Marooned On A Desert Island..!

At least 20 out of 44 homes in Sunnyside Park, Ringwood have been without landlines and, for some, broadband after a devastating fire at a neighbouring home destroyed overhead cables on Wednesday, August 19.
Despite multiple phone calls and two visits from engineers, the line is yet to be repaired, leaving residents without mobile phones unable to communicate with the outside world.
Cut off! Marooned! OMG!

We aren’t, however, told what percentage of the 20 homes were lacking mobile phone coverage…
Resident Peter Jackson described his disbelief at the situation. “The amount of difficulty BT has put us through is unbelievable. I’ve received three texts from them saying the fault has been repaired when it hasn’t….”
Wait, hang on. You got texts?

Well, you’re not even one of those ‘totally cut off’ then, are you?

*Not at all like

Monday, 28 September 2015

The Green Party: Never Afraid To Tackle The Big Issues

Marriage certificates are "profound unequal" because they fail to recognise the mothers of the bride and groom, MP Caroline Lucas has told the Prime Minister.
*rolls eyes*
She said: “It’s hard to believe that this inequality on marriage certificates still exists. This throwback to the past must be rectified – and quickly.
“The Prime Minister promised to make this change, yet no action has been taken.
"He should urgently address this profound inequality and change marriage certificates to record the details of both the mother and father of the bride and groom.”
And amazingly enough, this is something Cameron has indeed set in motion...
Speaking last summer, Mr Cameron said: “The content of marriage registers in England and Wales has not changed since the beginning of Queen Victoria's reign.
“This clearly doesn't reflect modern Britain and it's high time the system was updated.”
He said he had asked the Home Office to investigate how marriage certification can be reformed to include the details of both parents.
Well, we all know how long it takes the civil service to do anything. I’m sure they’ll consult and deliberate accordingly.

What’s your hurry, dearie?
Ms Lucas is urging fellow MPs to sign the motion to put pressure on the Government into taking action to address the "longstanding inequality".
She was spurred on after seeing an online petition by Ailsa Burkimsher Sadler, which received 70,000 signatures calling for the change.
One supporter wrote: “My mother raised me on her own, making thousands of sacrifices along the way. My dad never did anything useful or kind for us.
"I don't understand why I had to put his name on my marriage certificate. I can't be alone in this.”
The motion notes that "our law should not perpetuate the offensive and outdated message that marriage is a business transaction between fathers".
Hmmm, really? That’s going to be a bit tricky, isn’t it?

Because the Home Office already seems to have accepted ‘the offensive and outdated message that marriage is a business transaction between fathers’, doesn’t it?

Oh, wait. My mistake. That’s only for certain communities.

Why Don't People Feel Safe On Public Transport?

Officers were called to Ripple Road at about 4pm on Monday, April 27, when a 30-year-old woman had been pushed off a route 173 bus by a man claiming there was no room for her and the pushchair carrying her nine-month-old baby.
At the bus stop, the man allegedly punched her repeatedly in the face, chest and shoulders.
When the mother tried calling 999 he took her phone and threw it to the floor, smashing it.
So, that's quite a catalogue of offences. Against a vulnerable woman, no less!
Jermaine Stewart, of Millard Terrace, Dagenham, pled guilty to one count of common assault, three counts of assault on police, one count of criminal damage and one count of resisting arrest at Barkingside Magistrates Court yesterday.
His punishment? Well, hold on to your hats...
He was given a community order and ordered to carry out 150 hours of unpaid work – reduced from 200 hours due to his early plea – within the next 12 months, and to pay costs totalling £235.
No wonder public transport is considered much less preferable to using your (lockable) vehicle in gloriously enriched London....

Saturday, 26 September 2015

Oh, No! You Want ‘em? You House ‘em!

Families in Southampton are being urged to do their bit in tackling the humanitarian crisis unfolding on Europe's borders by sheltering scores of vulnerable Syrian refugees in their homes.

Oh. Wait. You’re serious?
The authority is the second in Hampshire to actively respond to Prime Minister David Cameron's announcement that Britain would resettle up to 20,000 refugees over the next four-and-a-half years.
As previously reported Winchester City Council has launched a new scheme to encourage home-owners with spare rooms to take in lodgers or tenants with council support and is working with its housing teams to keep some properties that are scheduled for sale.
Well, if David Cameron wants them, it’s up to David Cameron to house them. Not the public, who don’t want them. As Angela Merkel is finding out.

The ‘Guardian’ Digs Deep For #FirstWorldProblems…

Oh, the awful burden that is….the fridge!?
As I may have mentioned before, I feel bad about my fridge, and not only because its ice box needs defrosting so very badly (as I write, its sole occupant is a single Magnum ice cream; it lies there in some state, like Tutankhamun in his tomb). I can trace far too many bad habits back to the lure of its humming spaces, not least my shameful tendency to buy more fruit and vegetables than we can ever use in a single week (the certain knowledge that the stuff in my fridge won’t keep forever seems to be in permanent conflict with my feeling that its shelves are unhelpfully bare). My view of bagged salads are, for instance, that they’re a poxy rip-off and to be avoided at all costs – and yet, there is always one day in the month when, pathetically, I give in and buy one. Or take cheese and tomatoes. Again and again, I tell myself it’s stupid to put either in the fridge: what passes for our cellar will do for the cheese, and the tomatoes should be allowed to bask in a bowl by the window. But then my confidence will wobble – I blame the stupid “hygiene” lessons we had at school – and they’re promptly dispatched to the fridge, the better to lose, overnight, every last bit of their flavour.
Life is hard when you’re a progressive.

Friday, 25 September 2015

Gosh, Who’d Be Interested In Spreading This ‘News’?

According to [redacted], homes in Worcestershire could be crawling with Britain’s most venomous spiders over the next few months.
Yup, you guessed it
Pest management consultant with Basis Prompt, Clive Boase, said conditions are ideal for a significant spike in numbers in the autumn.
Blatant rent seeking. And this isn’t confined to small firms, either. Public sector employees show us how it’s done:
Consumers need to boycott and report car washes and nail bars staffed by people they suspect may be victims of trafficking or exploitation, the UK’s new independent anti-slavery commissioner, Kevin Hyland, has warned.
Ah, right, well, of course they are.

Because if there’s not lots of reports of suspected slavery, we might well ask ‘Hang on, why on earth do we need an anti slavery commission?’…
“If you see a car wash, and it is clear that people look like they are potentially being exploited ... boycott and report,” he said, adding that consumers need to be alert to cut-price services, and consider whether the prices being charged allowed employees to be paid appropriately.
Why on earth does he think that’s ever going to be a consideration governing where people shop?!?
The government estimates that up to13,000 people in Britain are the victims of modern slavery, but there have only been 130 convictions connected with people-trafficking.
So, perhaps government estimates are wildly off the mark? As is so often the case...

Better Not Complain About The Layout Of The Petunias...

Kathryn Stuckey, prosecuting, said Ms Roberts was phoning police after the "riot" broke out around 10pm, when Smith knocked her unconscious, broke her nose, gave her a black eye and damaged her cheek with a single blow.
Recorder David Dixon said Smith had drunk 20 pints during the wake.
He told Smith: "Your problem has always been drink. You drink too much, you get into violence, that leads you to court, you get sentenced, you deal with the sentence, you get drunk, more violence ... that seems to be the pattern that has been followed for many years now. You richly deserve to go to jail."
 Regular readers will already have realised what's coming next....
But because a probation officer had given an excellent report on how Smith was trying to put his violence behind him, the judge suspended a 15-month prison sentence on condition Smith does two years' supervision, 180 hours' unpaid work, observes a nightly curfew from 9pm to 5am for four months and goes on a rehabilitation programme. He must also pay £400 prosecution costs and a statutory surcharge as well as £900 compensation.
"You have got two years of hard work ahead of you," the judge told Smith.
His barrister Glenn Parsons said …since being released from prison, he had set up his own groundwork business.
Who'd hire him...?

Thursday, 24 September 2015

Ah, The Usual Excuses…

The mother-of-three told the court she is a full-time carer for her partner who has cerebral palsy and herself battles severe depression, which could have contributed to her serious neglect of the new pet.
Might I suggest that if you’re so ‘ill’ that you mistreat an animal to the point where vets have no choice but to put it down to end its suffering, then no-one in their right mind would allow you to be a carer for children or an invalid?

But that’s in the real world. Here, we never seem to question the validity of the excuse, or to consider why the people who starve their animals never look as if they’ve missed a meal in their lives themselves…
Miss Brown was given a 12 week suspended sentence and has been disqualified indefinitely from owning any animal as well as ordered to pay £630.
So, we, the taxpayer, will be paying this, yes?

Four ‘Rotten Apples’ In One Car? What Are The Odds..?

Yeah, yeah....
Merseyside Police officers Pcs Jonathan Webb, Mark Higgins, Joanne Parr and Paul Birch had been travelling in a police car along Dale Street in Liverpool when they were flagged down by Tesco deputy store manager David Markey.
He asked them for help as a security officer Shaun Rigby apprehended a thief – named Roy Fagan – in the road after he had fled the shop.
The officers are subject to a misconduct hearing after allegedly declining to help.
The hearing was told that Pc Webb, who was sitting in the front passenger seat, wound down his window but declined to help saying he was not “kitted up” .
It is alleged that the police officers then drove off – all failing to provide either direct assistance or summoning another patrol to attend.
Mr Markey then called 999 but before officers were able to arrive, Mr Rigby was assaulted by Fagan “kicking or kneeing” him in the head.
It is the officers’ case that they did not see the struggle.
Well, no, they wouldn’t, would they, if they failed to get their fat backsides out of the car
It is Pc Webb’s case that he maintains that Mr Markey did not tell him that a shoplifter had been detained.
So why did he say they ‘weren’t kitted up’ as an excuse?

Update: they’ve turned on each other, with PC Webb the fall guy, and the others claiming not to have heard the conversation, separated from him as they were by the spacious distance afforded by a police vehicle’s seats.

Still, it’s nice to know Merseyside farce is doing its bit for the disabled, by hiring so many deaf cops, eh?

Wednesday, 23 September 2015

Don’t Mention The War Ruddy Duck..!

Tony Whitehead, from the RSPB, said the company’s advice was “absolutely outrageous”. "He's suggesting killing birds and you just cannot recommend to do this in a civilised society."
Really? That’s strange, since you – the RSPB – do it all the time, don’t you?
The comments were widely condemned after being publicised by a wildlife crime officer, PC Josh Marshall
PC Marshall said: "I've had a massive amount of feedback about this - he's basically advocating killing wild birds. These birds mentioned aren't pest species, they're fully protected.
Yikes! Birdie racism!
A company spokesman said the information "should have been labelled a tip" rather than as advice.
Err, no, you can’t call it a ‘tip’ if it’s suggesting people commit a crime, you numpty!
The page has since been removed from the Devon Butterflies website.
A spokesman for Devon and Cornwall Police said: “No formal action was taken, the man was given words of advice.”
I just bet..!

The Continent, Where They Do Things Differently…

Police sources said the woman was waiting in the garden for officers to arrive who discovered her husband and son grappling with the intruder when they entered the £1.5million detached cottage on the outskirts of St Ives.
The well-placed source said: 'Police received a call around 4am on Sunday and when officers arrived, found the wife waiting for them in the garden.
'The father was on top of the intruder when police went in and his son behind him with his arm around his neck.
'There had obviously been a struggle and the son was trying to restrain him while his dad tied his hands up.
'They said he was very strong and insisted on staying where they were till police cuffed the burglar.
'At that point they got up and moved away and that’s when officers noticed the man was making strange movements.
'On closer examination they saw he was unconscious and didn’t appear to be breathing. They tried to revive him but were unsuccessful.'
The source added: 'A judicial investigation is now underway. It is up to the CPS to decide what to make a formal accusation against the family but I will say that they have been co-operative at all times and are very shocked and upset at what happened.
'It is obvious to me that if this man’s death is connected in any way to anything the father and son did, that what happened was an accident and not something they intended.
'Police are yet to be officially told how this man died and we do not have the autopsy results at this stage.'
Sound a bit odd to you?

 Wondering why the family haven’t all been routinely arrested and questioned, perhaps for days, putting a permanent record on file and perhaps jeopardising future holidays or jobs working with children?

Well, it didn’t happen in the UK. That’s why.

Tuesday, 22 September 2015

Doesn’t It Give You A Warm Glow?

Mrs Mahmoud, 40, and her seven children were branded a “family from hell” after complaints about noise, mess and abusive behaviour – as the Daily Express reported on Wednesday.
But the local council decided not to pursue eviction proceedings because the jobless woman’s children are as young as five.
So we will again be held hostage by a tribe of ingrates because they’ve managed to reproduce?

I seem to recall when Saddam held children as a human shield, he was excoriated for it. Yet the left allow their ‘victim class’ to do it all the time!
Officials decided not to evict them because if thrown out, they could present themselves as homeless at the nearest council office and, under the law, would be regarded as a housing priority.
Last night, Greg Smith, deputy leader of Hammersmith and Fulham Council, said the family will be moved out of the borough as soon as possible.
He said: “This council takes a zero tolerance approach to anti-social behaviour and our residents can now bid these neighbours from hell farewell.
“It is appalling that families like this repay the British taxpayer by wreaking havoc and showing a complete lack of respect to their law-abiding and hard-working neighbours.”
It is indeed. Yet no-one seems to want to do anything about it.

We seem merely to be compounding the problem by opening our doors to yet more ungrateful ‘refugees’ of the sort that spent a merry few days throwing rocks at weary Hungarian border cops.
A council spokesman said: “Notwithstanding the appalling behaviour, the council reluctantly acknowledges that under the law of the land it still has a legal obligation to house this family.”
Yes. So put them in the lowest rung of the housing ladder in the worst slum estate you can find. They deserve no more.

Less Court Of Justice, More Tower Of Babel...

An interpreter had been translating the evidence to Mr Hafiz, and his evidence to the jury, in an uncommon dialect which the defendant used.
But a member of the jury, who was familiar with the dialect, had raised concerns with the judge about the translation of the defendant's evidence.
Hmmm, not that uncommon, then? What are the odds?
Judge Rose said it was not a criticism of the interpreter, but there were significant difficulties with the dialect.
He told the jury: "I am not satisfied that what the defendant has been trying to convey to you in his evidence has accurately been conveyed."
Can't you just get another interpreter to double-check?
Judge Rose added: "This is not the end of the case, and there is every prospect this trial will take place in the future when these matters have been resolved."
He gave the prosecution 21 days to indicate whether they would retry the matter and fixed a provisional new trial date for February next year.

Monday, 21 September 2015


A group of 30 young boys and girls assaulted four people in a “completely unprovoked” attack in Thornton Heath.
Police are appealing to anyone who witnessed the assault in Bensham Lane at about 6.30pm on Saturday, August 22 to come forward.
Hmmm, any descriptions?
Police described the suspects as young boys and girls and said it was a completely unprovoked attack.
OK, that’s not what I meant, but still..! I guess this was just targeted at other young people their age?
Four victims, aged 18, 24, 31 and 45, sustained scratches and bruises during the attack.
Hmmm. Guess not!

*Children Of No Appearance

Let's Ask An Independent Expert!

An interesting venture came to my notice recently. What appears to be a dog vigilante group, intent on naming and shaming dogs and owners for alleged dog attacks. The organiser claims to be looking our for public interests by keeping a publicly available list of local 'dangerous dogs' and their owners deemed irresponsible.
Apart from huge concerns about the legality of such a list, we do have an existing legal system for reporting dogs and owners that injure or may injure people, along with other civil laws regarding dogs that may hurt other dogs.
And it works so well, who needs this?
Naming and shaming groups could focus on a mistaken area of risk. The tabloid press tend to focus on specific breeds, fatal incidents with dogs, and skims over the mass of dog bites and injuries that occur from family pets. By far the majority involve family dogs and children who are reasonably familiar to the dog.
By exaggerating rare incidents, we miss the genuine and real risks, that of the dog next door, the grandparent's dog, our own dog and our own kids who when together may not get along as nicely as we would like.
Gosh, this chap seems to be quite the expert, doesn't he?
My colleagues and other professionals in this job struggle against sensationalism to spread the useful safety advice to those that need to know.
As you have now read this column, please go ahead and share.
'Colleagues', eh..? Just what is the interest here?
I have written assessments of dog behaviour for legal cases as well as recommendations to help a court decide what may be appropriate action within the law.
Often it was a lapse in judgement, a poorly dog or owner, or a sudden, unexpected thing known as an 'accident'.
Ah! I see. God forbid these 'dog vigilantes' queer your nice little pitch with some unfortunate evidence, eh?

Saturday, 19 September 2015

Pointless Scaremongering…

Foxes are helping to spread a potentially fatal parasite that is threatening Britain's dog population, researchers have warned.
Up to 50 per cent of foxes are infected with lungworm, whose larvae can be found in the bodies and slime of slugs and snails.
Once swallowed by a dog, the parasite travels through its body to end up in the heart causing sickness and possibly death.
Oh noes! Our little doggy-woggies are at risk from these evil vulpine menaces! Whatever shall we do? If only there was a preventive treatm…

Oh. Hang on.
Mark Bossley, chief vet at animal charity Blue Cross, said: "We regularly advise dog owners of the dangers of lungworm because, sadly, we see so many cases every year.
"It is a hidden killer so we urge dog owners to talk to their vet about preventative treatments and be vigilant with their dogs when in the garden or on walks."
Quite. Lungworm posters have been up in my vet surgery for….well, for as long as I can remember. 

The only people who will be affected by this will be people who don’t take their animals to the vet, or pay attention to veterinary advice, and frankly, the poor beasts are better off dead with owners like that.

Sad to see the Countryside Alliance gleefully Tweeting it in support of their demanded repeal of the Hunting Ban. There are enough good reasons to argue against this pointless, class-based legislation without stooping to scaremongering.

Well, It’s Certainly Possible…

Detective Chief Inspector Jamie Piscopo, who is leading the murder inquiry, said they were following a number of leads, including a possible connection to the victim’s “criminal history.”
I mean, some would say that it’s even ‘probable’, but I suppose there is just the teensiest tiniest chance that there’s another reason for a well known criminal’s decomposing corpse to be found in an Ikea bag in Epping Forest…

Friday, 18 September 2015

Another /Golfclap For The Great British Justice System...

John Palmer, of Morris Avenue, admitted ignoring the order at Halton Magistrates' Court after he was banned in 2011 from possessing a dog.
The court heard how the 32-year-old was arrested after police carried out a raid at his home in Latchford on July 7 and seized two American Bulldogs.
Palmer was also arrested for drug possession after a quantity of cannabis was discovered at the house.
If the name sounds familiar, well, it should do. So is it 'throw the book at him' time?
Magistrates sentenced Palmer to pay £360 in court costs, a victim surcharge and a fine after admitting the two charges.

Owen Jones Quote Of The Week!

Most Britons want increased taxes on the rich, public ownership of rail and other utilities, and better workers’ rights
Really, Owen? Then why didn’t they vote for that at the last election?

Thursday, 17 September 2015

Ah, Remember The Great Old British Russian Eccentric..?

The woman who painted her heritage house pink has told The Argus it was a ‘cry for help’ as the property was restored to white.
Alexandra Capone, 40, sparked uproar when she painted the former lifeboat house on Worthing seafront deep pink back in March.
Speaking to The Argus at the house in Marine Parade the mother, who is subject to an anti-social behaviour order, told how her life had spiralled out of control since moving to England in 1997.
Yes, I’m sure she’d have been perfectly stable in Russia…
On Saturday evening Ms Capone was arrested following what police described as a “disturbance” outside her house. She was accused of breaching her anti-social behaviour order and appeared in custody at Crawley Magistrates’ Court on Monday (August 10).
She has been bailed to appear at Worthing Magistrates’ Court on October 2. Separately, she is accused of stealing items worth £10.17 from a Spar store in Heene Road, Worthing, and is due to appear again at Worthing magistrates’ court on August 18.
The intrepid local reporter ventures down for an actual interview. And it’s worth it.
“I painted my house pink,” she says, dismissing the furore. “Did I kill anybody?”
Today the house is back to white, albeit a bright white that is mismatched in its cream surroundings. And the 40-year-old mother is back living inside – despite reports from a supposed friend that she had gone back to her native Russia.
First, she wants to clear up the matter of her name. It is nothing like that of the late Chicago gangster, despite the inevitable jokes. “It is pronounced Capo-nee,” she says, stressing the ‘nee’ in her distinctive Russian accent. “Not Cap-own. Ale-ks-andrra Capo-nee.”
She was originally Alexandra Salnikova when she arrived from Russia, and Alexandra Woolnough not long after.
Tonight, a friend is helping clear up her spacious home at 107 Marine Parade, the former Worthing lifeboat station she owns. He sweeps beer cans, food remnants and other detritus off the parquet flooring, later breaking into a can of pie for them to share for dinner.
Her dog, who she calls Mr Perky, is not around. “I hide him,” she says, smiling in a way that makes you not quite sure what’s coming next.
“There’s an alligator in the bath upstairs,” her friend points out. “Well, it’s sort of a big lizard, really,” he later adds.
Lovely! Adding to the Brighton area's well deserved reputation for….well…errr….

Because He’s Been Caught, I Presume..?

Sarah Johnson, defending Gorton, described him as educationally disadvantaged and emotionally immature and added that he now regrets what happened.
Sure, sure, they all do, when they’re in the dock.

And…’educationally disadvantaged’? Is this some new politically-correct euphemism for ‘thick’..?

Wednesday, 16 September 2015

This Is Not Just A Problem For Pubs, Is It?

The ambience of the British boozer is being ruined by screaming babies and children whose parents allow them to run riot, according to disgruntled licensees and customers.
This is not just an issue that pubs face – ask anyone who has had a day’s shopping or museum visiting or trip on public transport ruined by unruly brats and their often mobile-phone-engrossed, oblivious parents.
The overturning of the pre-1995 ban on children under 14 being allowed in pubs in England and Wales has helped increase food takings, with the introduction of family dining, but the survey results suggest there may be an appetite for a return to a time before the rules were relaxed.
The pubs chased ‘family dining’ because they needed customers to replace the smokers driven out by the brewery company’s acquiescence to the anti-smoking agenda.

Now their new customers are chasing out more of their old customers by refusing to control their brats.
One customer’s response to the survey said: “My peaceful lunch by the fire with a pint was totally ruined by a child running around whooping and tripping up staff – and when asked to quieten down by the landlord, the poor man faced abuse from over-protective parents, ridiculous!”
Bet you’d prefer the smokers back instead, eh?

More Like Judge Jack, Please!

Judge Jack said a letter Adams had written to him "missed the point".
He said: "You still say you can't account for the actions of another person taken outside your home. That appears to be blaming other people for what happens and that completely misses the point.
"The dogs should never have been outside in the first place. You do not seem to grasp you have a serious responsibility."
Well, she’s no doubt managed to evade any up until now.
Michelle Adams, 47, was warned to keep her dogs under proper control in 2013, after neighbours reported them hounding and attacking members of the public.
On that occasion a contingent destruction order was imposed, meaning her two lurchers and a Jack Russell were allowed to return to her home in Padstow Close, on the condition of being inside or on a lead at all times.
Despite this, residents frequently spotted them roaming the area alone, Hull Crown Court heard yesterday.
And inevitably, one bit a girl of eight.
Following the attack, all three dogs were seized by police.
Too little, too late.

Did the neighbours not report the dogs to the authorities, or did the authorities – as usual – do the square root of sod all about the reports?

Tuesday, 15 September 2015

Questions Need To Be Asked…

Horrific footage has captured the moment a heroic dad had his hands ripped to shreds after throwing himself in the path of a Japanese Akita dog determined to attack his baby son.
The 27-year-old has been receiving hospital treatment for the last three days after suffering more than 50 bite wounds to his arms in the incident on Marton Road in Middlesbrough.
The footage is horrific, and there are questions to answer:
“My mate got a piece of wood and started swinging at it. If it wasn’t for him, I could have been dead.
To be fair to the owner, he came out and tried to call it off. He tried to hit it with a slipper but it turned on him as well.
“My mate was hitting it with the wood but it wasn’t having any affect, and the owner shouted “just kill it” .
But nobody else stopped or tried to help.“
What sort of man owns a dog like this? I think we all know.
The victim said he has been to James Cook University Hospital every day for treatment since the attack, which took place at around 6.45pm on Monday.
A Cleveland Police spokeswoman said the dog was “humanely destroyed” by rifle officers at around 11pm that evening at the owner’s request.
The force today said inquiries are continuing into the incident, but no arrests have been made.
Why did it take over three hours for this animal to be destroyed? And why has no arrest of the owner been made?

I really don’t think anyone shown this video can deny that this dog is ‘dangerously out of control in a public area’, can they? It should be open and shut!

“Why, Ambassador, With This Non-Job, You’re Really Spoiling Us…”

The council has secured a £26,000 grant which will be used to finance crime prevention ambassadors and a youth ambassadors project.
The crime prevention ambassadors will provide residents with the knowledge and resources to better protect themselves and their homes and engage with people out and about in the borough.
Ummm. Doesn’t that sound rather like what we were told PCSOs would do?

I can’t wait to see what the Youth Cadre will be doing!
Meanwhile the community safety youth ambassadors will use drama-based workshops to develop the relationship between young people and the police as well as developing a youth forum.
Successful applicants, who must be available for a minimum of four hours a month, will be trained to provide basic crime prevention advice. Travel and lunch allowances will be available.
Oh, wait. It’s not funny any more. It’s bloody taxpayer’s money again!

Monday, 14 September 2015

Sounds Familiar....

It's often been said that Tikka Masala is the British national dish. But it might not be for much longer, as figures show two curry houses are closing in Britain each week due to a shortage of chefs.
This crisis is due in part to the retirement of the original wave of immigrants in the 1970s who set up curry houses. But the industry is also suffering due to immigration laws which make it difficult to bring chefs to the UK from abroad.
Oh noes! What can we do? Could we....maybe train some?

Well, one man plans to try:
An award-winning curry house owner plans to train budding youngsters looking to master Asian cuisine.
Ibrahim Ali, who runs the popular Usha Restaurant in Burnley, said he hopes to launch a curry college within the next 12 months in the face of a national staff shortage.

But...there's a snag. And it's the usual one.
Ibrahim, who was a winner at the British Curry Awards and is Usha’s executive head chef, said: “The staff we have got at the minute are all over 35. The work is very difficult and it’s hard for us to engage with young people.
“I have tried. I have had apprentices, they do four or five weeks and then come up with excuses. We start work at 5pm and finish at 10pm, but the workload between then is heavy.
“We are finding it hard to attract the new generation. It’s hot, there’s shouting, and there are demands.”
Yup, the laziness and entitlement culture of today's youth strikes again.

The Word You’re Looking For Is ‘Poacher’…

A hunter bundled a wild deer into his car and slit its throat before boasting it made "a good meal for ten".
That doesn’t sound much like the actions of a hunter to me…
Shahid hauled the injured deer into his car after taking it from a field off Mitchley Avenue on December 23 last year.
He transported it alive to his home, where he cut its throat. Later that he posted on the Facebook group Deer Stalkers International, boasting of killing a deer that had "made a good meal for ten".
Facebook users reported the post to the police, who were also contacted by a member of the public who saw Shahid putting the deer in his car. Officers from the Metropolitan Police's wildlife crime unit searched Shahid's house on February 18. He was charged with killing a deer under the Deer Act 1991 and causing unnecessary suffering to an animal.
Police also seized air weapons and hunting gear from his house. Shahid pleaded guilty to both charges and was given a four-month jail term, suspended for two years, yesterday. He was also ordered to complete 200 hours of unpaid work.
Interesting use of terminology by the ‘Croydon Guardian’ there. Even the police call this what it is – poaching. Not hunting.

Sunday, 13 September 2015

Fighting The Image Of Gay Men As Bitchy Queens? Yr Doin’ It Wrong…

Last week, while chatting to a man on Grindr, Knight told him he was HIV positive. The man replied that he “wasn’t ready for that kind of complication in my life”.
Knight then posted his retort on Facebook.
His response, “Oh you still wear flared jeans… I’m not sure I’m ready for that kinda complication in my life,” received hundreds of likes and a stream of positive comments.
The conversation on Grindr went downhill from there.
Knight wrote: “He went on to say, ‘Someone in your situation should be a bit more realistic,’ to which I replied, ‘Well the good news is my HIV can be treated. Your fashion sense however…’”

I just…

H/T: @Obtuse via Twitter

An Apology? Quite Right Too!

After all, it should clearly be 'fewer staff', not 'less'....

Sunday Funnies...

Oh, scientists, those wacky scamps....

Saturday, 12 September 2015

The Pen(is) Mightier Than The (Censored)…

Terrence Blacker on literature’s gender war front:
Traditionally a restless time of the year, this August has seen a new offensive in that great conflict of the moment: the gender war. Under attack, admittedly not for the first time, are male writers.
As well as anyone who offends the SJWs orthodoxy, and as the Hugo Awards debacle shows, they are more than happy to pursue a scorched earth policy in this war…
On the BBC’s Edinburgh Nights, Kirsty Wark expressed shock at a recent report which revealed that only two of the past 15 winners of the Man Booker Prize had female protagonists. Two eminent women writers, the poet Jackie Kay and the novelist Maggie O’Farrell, were on hand to stoke the flames of outrage.
“An awful lot of men don’t create credible, interesting, older women characters,” said Kay, identifying Philip Roth – a traditional hate-figure in these discussions – as a writer whose female characters are “either absent or not complex”. There is also a bias of cultural perception, according to O’Farrell: while men were seen to write fiction, what women wrote was “women’s fiction”.
I suppose it comes as no surprise that the BBC isn’t exactly neutral in this war, does it?
Meanwhile, in other parts of the literary village, William Boyd, whose new novel Sweet Caress has a female protagonist, was criticised by the novelist Charlotte Vale-Allen for having “no viable comprehension of how women actually think” , while Jonathan Franzen was getting it in the neck because his new work – yup, another heroine – includes a comically ferocious feminist who insists that her husband sits down when he pees.
Perish the thought! Surely these can only be fictional creations meant to embarrass the movement?
Gender identity and bias have become the themes of the moment. Sexual politics, public and private, have become interestingly febrile. Grim stories of everyday sexism are exposed and ridiculed online. The actual nature of gender has become gloriously and hilariously uncertain. These swirling influences and pressures make it all the more important that the bossy voice of the cultural establishment is ignored by writers and readers.
Yes, quite! The Hugo debacle showed that the SJWs can’t have it all their own way without a fight.
Inconveniently for some, fiction is an expression of how the world looks through one pair of eyes, interpreted by a single brain. There is something odd and faintly sinister about the relatively new idea that artists and writers should be engaged in moral improvement.
Indeed there is. But I suspect it’s not going to go away, wish though we might that it would.

MAMIL* Complains About Mammal…

A cyclist was thrown from his bike after a dog ran in front of him on a cycle lane.
Let the entitlement flow!
John Smith injured his wrist and stomach after going over his handlebars on Sunday in Western Esplanade, Westcliff. Mr Smith, a member of the East Essex Triathlon Club, is warning the cycle lane is too close to pedestrians and traffic and its just a matter of time before someone is killed.
He said: “I’d been cycling with friends from the club that morning, but decided to do a few more miles going through Canewdon and Southend.
“I got opposite the Toulouse cafe when this dog ran out in front of me. I was going at about 20mph.
“I had to brake really hard and went flying over the handlebars.
“Fortunately I didn’t fall into the road. If I had, I would have been seriously injured because there was heavy traffic.
“I have been cycling for years and am pretty vigilant, but the dog wasn’t on a lead and just ran across the cycle path.
“There are signs saying dogs must be on a lead, but its owner ignored that.”
Just like lots of cyclists ignore ‘No Cycling’ signs in Southend town centre? Or red lights?
“The cycle lane is just poorly designed. It’s not wide enough and it’s just a matter of time before someone is seriously injured or killed.”
This lane isn’t wide enough? Really? 

Julie Dempsey, 51, from Canvey, was cycling with her partner two weeks ago when they also had a close shave on the same part of the cycle lane.
She added: “A small child suddenly ran out in front of us. My partner yelled to warn him and we managed to swerve just in time. I know its difficult, but ideally the cycle path needs to be wider and it needs to be a bit more obvious that it’s a cycle lane.”
I fail to see how they could make it more obvious…

*Middle Aged Man In Lycra

Friday, 11 September 2015

I Think We All Know The Song She’ll Be Singing…

One of Britain’s biggest exam boards has been forced to change their A-level music syllabus after…
Oh dear, not another hilarity-causing paper..?
… a teenager won her campaign to ensure female composers were studied on the course.
Just because they were female. Wow. Think about this for a moment.
The Girls’ Day School Trust, the UK’s leading network of independent girls’ schools, joined leading academics and composers in backing Ms McCabe’s campaign.
At a meeting this week the 17-year-old received a personal apology from Mark Anderson, Managing Director of Edexcel’s parent company Pearson, and an assurance that the course will change. She had written to him demanding change following her involvement in a ‘Fearless Futures’ programme exploring gender inequality, which she said enabled her to recognise “normalised sexism” .
Ah. I can see where we are going with this. A sausage factory course churning out identikit angry birds. What could go wrong?
Ms McCabe is not resting on her laurels and has already written to Nicky Morgan, the Education Secretary, as she wants to “role (sic) this process out to other exam boards”.
The teenager said: “It’s not just Edexcel [where this problem exists], other exam boards are at fault too. Edexcel is the leader in A level music but there are other people studying music with different exam boards so they should have the opportunity to learn about women composers too.”
Let’s hope any prospective employer Googles Ms McCabe’s name before offering her a job.

You wouldn’t want your company’s name to be dragged through the mud by employing a shrill harpy who has public spats with ‘misogynists’, would you?

Face Facts: Your Son Was Breaking The Law Too…

…and it was the main factor in his death:
Ms Momtaz, who worked as a communications adviser to former Mayor of London Ken Livingstone, told the Standard: “It’s as if because of the speed Sami was travelling it had to be his fault. The CPS didn’t take up the case, even though this man was breaking the law by being on the road in his car. At the inquest it felt as if Sami was on trial. But there was no evidence to show the case against the other driver had been properly looked at. There’s been no justice for Sami. It breaks my heart.
“What sort of message does it send out if you can drive a car without insurance, be involved in someone’s death and effectively face no consequences?”
Well, what sort of ‘message’ does it send out when you do twice the posted speed limit in a mostly residential street and then blame the other driver who had no time to react?
He had been riding at 60mph in the lead-up to the accident in Lordship Lane last June and hit uninsured Steven Orford’s people carrier at 35mph after applying the brakes.
The fact that the other driver was uninsured is irrelevant here. And the CPS are quite right to lower the charge.
Mr Ahmed’s mother Hasina Momtaz, from South Norwood, has campaigned to get the CPS to review its decision and had hoped an inquest at Southwark coroner’s court on Tuesday would prompt prosecutors to do so.
But coroner Shanta Deonarine found the circumstances did not constitute gross negligence on the part of Mr Orford, saying: “It is clear that his bike was travelling at speed and as a result of the collision Sami made contact with a Vauxhall Zafira and two other vehicles, sustaining injuries which resulted in his death.”
It was only sheer luck that no-one else was killed or seriously injured by this idiot’s speeding motorbike.
A CPS spokeswoman said: “We looked at all the evidence in this case including the suspect’s and the victim’s manner of driving leading up to the incident. The evidence did not establish any fault on the part of the suspect in the manner of his driving.
“We therefore concluded that there was insufficient evidence for a realistic prospect of conviction in either of these charges.”
Quite. There’s no-one more at fault here in his demise than him.

Thursday, 10 September 2015

What Sort Of ‘Message’ Does It Send Them..?

Supt Andy Cox, head of the county’s operational command unit, said: “This has been a very lengthy and challenging investigation and I would like to thank everyone who has worked on it to ensure that it did finally come to court.
“These incidents are extremely rare and it is the first time in Northamptonshire that someone has been charged with this offence.
“It took some careful consideration from experts within CPS to come up with the final decision which, ultimately, sends out a clear message to the owners of these dogs.”.
…that all the other horrific news reports about dangerous dog maulings and deaths hasn’t taught them?

Calm Down, Calm Down, Calm Down!

Joseph Kotrie-Monson, defending, said his client was a suicide risk.
Judge Trevor-Jones told him: “You are described as having very high anger and aggressive characteristics.”
Hmmm. Any evidence of that?
Jack Brierley attempted to escape the dock and knocked a female security guard to the floor as chaos broke out inside Liverpool Crown Court.
The 21-year-old, who has a history of trying to set himself on fire, grabbed his tie with two hands, tightening it, and shouted how he wanted to die.
Ah. Ok.

What was he there for?
Brierley had just been handed five years and seven months in prison for a brutal attack on a pedestrian who’d made a jokey remark about his noisy exhaust.
After getting out his car and punching Anthony Jordan in the street, last November, Brierley circled the streets in Ashton-in-Makerfield, looking for more retribution.
Armed with a heavy exhaust pipe from his boot, the ADHD-sufferer clubbed the victim while screaming his intention to kill him, prosecutors said.
Open and shut!
After order was restored, he was heard sobbing and repeatedly apologising.
Yeeeeeah, it’s a bit late for that, methinks.

Wednesday, 9 September 2015

Gaming 1999: "Outcast" (Dell Pentium)

Voxels! Remember those? Back when they were the in thing in PC games, I picked this game up on release, installed it, played a bit and then forgot about it (as I often do).

It was 'Outcast' an adventure game by a little known Belgian developer called 'Appeal', released by InfoGrames in the UK.

I went back to it a few months later, as one of those 'Oh, yeah, should finish this' moments, and then was hooked for the next couple of weeks, before I finally mastered the tricky 'shoot slow-moving bolts while riding strange alien ostrich-dinosaur' moves needed to progress.

The score was utterly gorgeous. And the freedom to explore the planet, as much as to progress the game, was quite unique at that point in time. It's been remastered ans is, of course, now available on Steam.

Sadly, the much awaited sequel never did materialise because I don't think it was that big a hit here or in the States. Pity. I'd have loved to go back to Adelpha.

Schools Are Meant To Prepare You For Life…

…and compliance with often daft rules is indeed a part of life:
A number of children at a Poole academy were taken out of lessons for pencil case equipment infractions - including having a ruler 10cm too short.
Predictably, there’s outrage, OUTRAGE!
Several parents contacted The Daily Echo to complain their children at Magna Academy, Poole, had been put into 'isolation' for not fully complying with the schools strict equipment list.
They said more than 40 children were thought to have been held away from their classmates in another room in silence, and released only when their parents brought in the correct piece of kit.
Ah, so the lazy parents who refused to comply with the rules had their lives disrupted? Good! Who says schools can’t change behaviour?
Miranda Crumpler said she was astonished when her 12-year-old son was put in isolation for having a pencil case that was too short.
She said: "The academy says it wants to educate to a high standard, but how can pupils be educated when they are put in isolation like this? It is ridiculous."
Is it, Mrs Crumpler? Is it really?
Mrs Crumpler said her son was warned by teachers, last week, that isolation was beckoning if he didn't get a 30cm pencil case and ruler by Monday.
"I wrote a note saying I would not have my son put into isolation, and that he had a 30cm ruler but it was folding - and it does not state in school policy that it couldn't be folding," she said.
So….to sum up, you thought you’d get into a pissing contest with the school to try to get them to back down and lost? Ha ha ha ha!

Frankly, the thing holding most of these kids back isn’t obsessive school rules, but parents who, it would seem, never grew up properly themselves.
Richard Tutt is head of the academy, formally Ashdown Technology College, which has gone from being in special measures to an outstanding Ofsted rating in less than two years, and was described as "truly inspiring" by Prime Minister David Cameron earlier this year.
He said correct equipment "is vital for students" and "clear and specific requirements" were communicated to parents in July and again at the start of term last week.
And learning when to ‘comply with clear and specific requirements’ even when you don’t personally agree with them are part and parcel of grown up life, if you expect to get a job.

If your parents aren’t teaching you that, then be thankful that your school seems prepared to do so.

I Thought What You Didn’t Know Couldn’t Hurt You..?

Two police officers are being investigated over “distressing” social media messages relating to the Shoreham airshow crash.
Good lord! Well, if people will post things on public fora, then they only have themselves to bl…

Oh. Hang on!
Sussex police said a private online message was allegedly sent to a colleague about Operation Bowdell – the force’s response to the disaster.
The recipient immediately reported the incident and the two officers, who are based at Brighton and Hove, are under investigation for gross misconduct by the professional standards department.
Well, that’s a little different, isn’t it?

According to the ‘Argus’, the ‘distressing message’ is a selfie. Tactless? Stupid? Maybe.

But ‘professional misconduct’..?
Deputy chief constable Olivia Pinkney said: “I cannot emphasise how upset I am that we are investigating such an allegation.
My colleagues have informed the victims’ families and apologised to them for it will undoubtedly cause them.
It’ll only cause them distress because you’ve seen fit to make a public ballyhoo about it!
“They are disappointed as we all are. Such an allegation impacts on everyone who was affected by the crash and detracts from the professionalism of hundreds of colleagues who have worked so tirelessly on this operation.”
What does one think detracts more from ‘professionalism’, then? The (possibly juvenile) sending of a selfie, or the hysterical overreaction and ‘stab colleague in the back to get brownie points’ behaviour of the officer who received the photo and, instead of saying ‘Yuck! Please don’t send this sort of stuff!’ immediately shopped his or her colleagues to the Thought Police?

Tuesday, 8 September 2015

"Freeze Dirtbags! Architectural Liaison Squad!"

Plans to build 12 houses in Queensbury had to be altered after...
Objections from neighbours?
...the police raised concerns that the design could encourage crime.
If this sounds a bit familiar, yes, we have been here before.
The plans had to be altered by developer Eco Windows, after West Yorkshire Police raised concerns about a private shared footpath which had been drawn into the scheme.
The footpath would have run along the back of the townhouses to allow the householders to take their bins in and out of their back gardens.
But Lisa Reardon, architectural liaison officer for West Yorkshire Police, wrote to Bradford Council planners saying such shared footpaths could attract criminals or cause grievances between neighbours.
'Could'. Also, 'could not', but hey, when you've got the badge, you have to use it, I suppose...
She said: "We do have some areas across the district where some neighbours use these footpath areas for flytipping, which causes neighbour disputes.
"If the gate is left open or unlocked, it allows any potential offender to enter this area and attempt entry into the gardens."
The scheme has since been redesigned, with this footpath removed, a new council report shows. do the householders take their bins out of their back gardens now? Or doesn't that matter?

I suppose it doesn't. Not when you have pre-crime to fight...

Hands Up, Who Really Believes This Is A Purebred Staffie..?

A man was left with serious injuries after the dog he was caring for suddenly attacked him.
The animal, believed to be a Staffordshire Bull terrier, turned on the man in the back garden of a property in Garretts Walk, Druids Heath, on Wednesday.
The man managed to release the dog from the grip of his arm and escape into the shed, where he remained until the emergency services arrived.
Sadly, police didn’t shoot the thing on the spot, thus saving the taxpayer the kennel boarding fee.
The dog has been seized.
Police are now trying to trace the owner of the dog and are taking statements from witnesses to establish how the incident occurred.
Well, it should be easy because surely the victim knows who he was looking after the dog for?

Monday, 7 September 2015

The Incoherence Of The Entitlement Generation…

A charity worker is urging the government to listen to young people instead of "sticking plaster" over their problems.
Takyiwa Danso, who grew up in Tottenham, works on international charity projects for the Al Khair Foundation in Bounds Green.
Ah, a future productive member of society, indeed! Who needs builders and plumbers and bus drivers?
The 22-year-old, who is speaking out as part of International Youth Day which was held on August 12, believes young people in the UK are marginalised and undervalued, which can lead to riots.
I thought it was lack of trainers and widescreen TVs that led to riots?
Takyiwa began volunteering for the Second Haringey’s Boy’s Brigade youth club when she was 16, as she believes having a good start in life is paramount.
But she feels that even after the Tottenham riots, the money pumped into the area has not addressed the real issues youth face.
She added: “There is a generation that has missed out who aren’t able to properly benefit. They need to work on not letting that happen again.
“You don’t want another riot, but it was because people were angry. You need to address why they are angry as opposed to just sticking a plaster over it.”
From what I can see – and your little rant hasn’t swayed me much – they are angry because they’ve been taught by the education system that they are little gods whose every utterance should be hung on and respected, when the world of business that might want to employ them finds them sullen, workshy and overly confident about their meagre abilities, and decides not to employ them as a result.

If they then go on to foul their own nests in an orgy of self-righteous violence and looting, well, that’s just proving who was right, isn’t it?

Once, It Would Have Been Easy To Determine...

Insisting there were several witnesses keen to help police, and video evidence, she said she now simply wants action or warnings for others.
The grandmother said shop staff confirmed the attack was caught on CCTV but that after watching footage, officers were unable to transfer the files before it was routinely wiped.
Contradicting this, a police spokesperson said the cameras were not working.
Gosh, who to believe..? My instinct (to always believe official accounts over those of civilians) has taken a hammering lately...
Warwickshire Police confirmed the dog attack on May 23 was being investigated and may fall under the Dangerous Dog Act.
A statement read: “The victim’s dog was injured after being attacked by another dog and the victim sustained slight facial injuries.
“The owner of the offending dog left the scene. Unfortunately there was no working CCTV available, and witnesses were only able to provide limited descriptions.
“The investigation is still very much ongoing with a number of lines of enquiry being pursued to trace the offender.”
OK, made up my mind. It's not Warwickshire plod.

Saturday, 5 September 2015

Emily Jupp Is Shocked, SHOCKED….

…that rape claims aren’t automatically given credence:
Although I’m pleased that the research is being taken seriously, it still makes me want to bash my head against the table in impotent rage that there was even need for a study like this in the first place. Why, when a woman reports that she has been raped while drunk is she not believed? I have sat in on a trial where a girl claimed she had been assaulted and it is an incredibly difficult thing to watch. Imagine being that girl -- having to stand up in front of a group of strangers, and the person who raped you, and recount in detail, blow by blow, what happened to you. Imagine having every gap in your memory questioned? Why would you choose to make that up?
Well, Emily, there’s all sorts of reasons.

It could be because, as law students, they think they can get away with it.

It could be because they are liars and fantasists.

It could be because they know that idiots like you will demand they face no punishment.

It could be because they know that the legal system is biased in favour of even proven nutjobs.

It might be because avoiding justice is easy if you can portray yourself as a victim.

It might be because the effect on the accuser will be so much worse than your own punishment.

Or it might just be because, despite the full benefits of a Western education, you're as dumb as a tree stump.

Hang On, Why Can’t We Afford This..?

A five-year-old boy has been removed from his disabled mother’s care as a judge dismissed an allegation of ‘social engineering’ despite ruling it would cost too much to keep them together.
The family court judge ruled that the child must be taken from the care of his disabled mother claiming her disability made it impossible for her to meet her disabled son's needs by herself, and the level of local authority support she would need would be too extensive.
…when we can apparently afford to take in yet more asylum seekers from Syria Turkey?
The judge, who said the boy could not be identified, said Buckinghamshire County Council wanted to take the youngster into care.
He ruled in the local authority's favour, approved a care plan and said the boy needed a "permanent substitute family".
I’m guessing the boy doesn’t share his mother’s disability, and so is very much adoptable?
Judge Hughes indicated that the suggestion of "social engineering" had been made when a social worker involved with the boy had had given evidence during the hearing and been questioned by a lawyer representing the boy's mother.
"(The mother's) own disability renders it impossible, particularly over time, to meet (the boy's) developing needs," said the judge.
"One of the major issues in this case has been to the extent to which it would be possible for the local authority in providing support to the mother to care for (the boy) could effectively make up for her deficits and for (the boy) in that way to be provided with good enough parenting.
"It has been suggested that to remove (the boy) from his mother's care and provide an optimum level of parenting by adopters or long-term foster carers is in effect a feature of social engineering.
"I reject that proposition. The level of support that would be required in relation to such an arrangement would be so extensive as to be detrimental to (the boy's) welfare."
I cannot understand why this outrageous decision isn’t garnering headline news in the so-called progressive press.

Nor why it isn’t a cause celebre for all the usual suspects in the disability lobby.

Friday, 4 September 2015

So, The ‘Guardian’ Thinks Everyone’s Entitled To A Defence, Don’t They..?

A prominent retired high court judge, who specialised in family matters, has been criticised for giving evidence for the defence in the case of a man accused of raping a girl – though she knew he had a previous conviction for violence.
Well, so what? She wasn’t, after all, giving evidence that he was a risen saint with a clean record, was she?
Potter’s father, Steven, who was in court when Butler-Sloss gave her character evidence, said he had been surprised at the time she had testified given how violent the attack was.
“It was strange to see this very powerful person supporting someone who had acted like this. The CCTV made it clear what had happened. Now she’s stood up in court again and tried to help him. I can’t understand it.”
It’s easy to understand. Anyone’s entitled to a defence. Even idiots.
Asked by the Guardian why she had testified in the recent case when she must have known that Chard had a conviction for violence, Butler-Sloss said: “On the first occasion I gave evidence of character. I did not give evidence of character in the latest trial.” Rather she said she had given evidence of a factual nature and insisted she was not giving testimony about his “general character”.
There is no suggestion that Butler-Sloss has broken any rules.
So why report on this non-story then?

A Total Failure Of Common Sense…

A customer had seen the offending item - which was part of a £10 B&M Bargains police toy set which included a badge and handcuffs - lying on a table and dialled 999.
Failure no: 1. And shortly, failure no: 2…
Two officers carrying real firearms had arrived at Mr Legavicius's car wash in Moulton Chapel, Lincolnshire, on Bank Holiday Monday
Mr Legavicius, 32, explained the weapon was a toy but was stunned when officers told him they would still have to take it away for 'forensic testing'.

I just…

Talk about making a mountain out of a molehill!
The father-of-two said his son is still waiting for the red-tipped black plastic gun to be returned to him by police.
He added: 'I think this is a bit ridiculous. I thought it was a joke when I heard about it.
'We have done nothing wrong. If somebody had a gun why would they leave it out on a table at a car wash? It's crazy.
'I understand they have to check when a complaint. But they should just say: "sorry, it was a mistake".
Well, yes, that’s what would happen in any normal country. And maybe the police would have words with the idiot who rang them.

But this in England, and the pant-wetters are in full charge, so to justify their arrival, they have to do something. Even if that ‘something’ merely exacerbates the situation.
'I'm not sure how much damage a £10 B&M Bargains toy gun will cause,' said Mr Legavicius, who is originally from Lithuania and has lived in the UK for more than a decade.
'It was part of a police toy set, because he loves playing cops and robbers. 'He wanted to grow up to be a policeman but not anymore.'
Poor kid. One can’t help but wonder what a realistic police set for the UK cops would contain these days? I bet it wouldn’t be a badge, a gun and handcuffs….

The police, of course, in the face of a PR disaster, fall back on dumb insolence and reliance on ‘rules’:
A Lincolnshire Police spokesman said RAPT officers carry sidearms as part of their standard kit.
She (Ed: Huh??) added: 'The premises were not raided, they were visited by two RAPT officers on Bank Holiday Monday afternoon.
'They were reasonably satisfied that the object was a replica or toy but it was seized as per standard procedure and booked in at Spalding Police Station.
'What happens next usually is that the people involved will be contacted and arrangements can be made to have the gun returned.
'Any incident which involves a report of firearms is taken very seriously and the safety of the public and officers are foremost consideration.'
Good god, why doesn’t someone simply say, in plain English, ‘We got this wrong, and we’re sorry. Here’s the obvious kid’s toy back, and a bunch of flowers for Mrs Legavicius.‘..?

Why this constant fallback on robotic quoting of ‘rules’, as if the police were simply mindless automations who…

Oh. Answered my own question, I guess.

Thursday, 3 September 2015

Everything Is ‘cos I Is Black. EVERYTHING!

They may have been, by her own admission, a little rambunctious.
For ‘rambunctious’, read ‘loud and bloody annoying’…
But Lisa Johnson is not so sure that she and ten of her female friends would have been asked to get off the Napa Valley Wine Train if they had been white. At the weekend, Ms Johnson endured what they said was a humiliating experience after forced to get off the train for allegedly laughing and talking too loudly.
Of course, the Race Card is deployed at the first opportunity. Never mind the fact that anyone else probably wouldn’t have got three warnings to tone it down before being ejected!
In a statement Sunday, Napa Valley Wine Train spokeswoman Kira Devitt said the company “received complaints from several parties in the same car and after three attempts from staff, requesting that the group keep the noise to an acceptable level, they were removed from the train and offered transportation back to the station in Napa.”
Fair enough!
“The train is set up to be with your friends, to drink wine and have a good time,” Johnson said. “We were thinking, ‘Who are we offending? ’”
The people who complained, dummy!

They Don’t Sound All That ‘Complicated’ To Me…

Tony Davis, defending, argued that Potts was not an irresponsible dog owner and described him as "an uncomplicated man with very complicated problems".
Mr Davis said the suicide of his son had led him to "channel all his energies and efforts into his dogs at the expense of all else" and "he adored his dogs". The death of his son had caused him to lead an isolated existence, said Mr Davis, and that "the dogs have been a source of support and he prides himself on the condition of his dogs (Ed: Oh, really..?) and they have become drivers for his own wellbeing".
He said Potts had gone as far to say he saw no reason to function in life without them.
Well, that makes two of us. I see no reason for Potts to function in life as well!
But Judge Prince rejected these arguments and, as well as jailing him, ordered the destruction of the six dogs.
The court heard that the cost of housing all of his dogs since the attack had reached £38,000.
What the hell were they feeding them, fillet steak!?
Jailing him for three months and banning him from owning dogs for life, the judge said: "I do not want someone to say if only Judge Prince had sentenced that man to prison, that man whose dog attacked my child might have kept it under control."
Well said! If only more judges gave a thought to the possible consequences of their leniency…

Wednesday, 2 September 2015

The Unenforceable In Full Pursuit Of The Unspeakable…

Car cruisers will be banned from Southend after the courts granted an injunction against them.
If you’re wondering ‘How..?’, given that car cruises are usually no more than young folk in nice cars driving up and down, well, take heart. You aren’t alone.
The injunction obtained from the High Court forbids any car-cruise events from happening anywhere in the Borough until September 2016. However, the authority admits it is still working with Essex Police to draw up plans on how to enforce the injunction.
Well, quite! If everyone who owns a particular car or type of car WhatsApps their chums & says ‘Fancy a drive to the seaside and back?’ is that illegal?

If Mr & Mrs Average are out for a pootle down to Thorpe Bay in their vintage Jag, do they risk Essex Police zooming up behind them, lights flashing, because that’s the fifth vintage Jag in a row that’s passed their waiting patrol car?
It followed the furore after a ‘static’ car meet up earlier this month, that saw hundreds of vehicle enthusiasts descend on Western Esplande. However, a small number of them were doing ‘burnouts’ and driving recklesssly during the event.
Then why not arrest that ‘small number’ for the offences they committed, and leave everyone else alone?
Independent Martin Terry, who is responsible for transport at the authority, said: “I’m very pleased that we have successfully obtained this order, which will enable us to take tough action against any groups who comes to our town with the intention of driving recklessly.”
“Anyone who organises such an event now does so at their own peril and we will not be shy in bringing the full force of the law to bear.”
“At the same time I’m kindly asking the public to be vigilant and report any incidents to the police if you see them occurring.”
God, if anyone thought that electing independents would get you a different type of politician than the overbearing, NuPuritan prodnoses of the main parties, then Martin Terry is here to prove you wrong, isn’t he?

Pigeons, Now, They're A Different Matter...

The 67-year-old demanded to know why officers had shot his son, whom he described as a ‘lovely lad who wouldn’t hurt a fly’.
 Oh, really?
‘They went to his flat, they shot him, but they won’t say where, or how... They said he had a gun but he never had a gun in his life. The only thing he had was an air pistol that he shot pigeons at his balcony with … because they kept him awake at night.
Clearly not the actions of a rational man, though. As is refusing to put the weapon down when armed police come calling...
His step-mother Mary Fox, 63, added: ‘James was a lovely lad … He shouldn’t have been killed by the police; the police can shoot people without killing them.
Ah, perhaps they should have shot the gun out of his hand, eh?
Mr Fox said his grammar school-educated son, who leaves a teenage daughter, changed after his younger brother Adam died eight years ago, adding: ‘James went downhill from there and became depressed and started drinking.’
Suicide by cop. Open and shut, no riots, move on.

Tuesday, 1 September 2015

Poor Kid Might As Well Have Been Raised By Wolves…

The parents of a severely disturbed “feral” child have been jailed for the way they ill-treated and neglected her.
The description makes depressing, if familiar, reading:
The family’s squalid home stank of animals and was crammed with rubbish, clutter, dead and living flies and cages containing small animals, including six cages each containing two occupants in the kitchen, the court heard. Some of the animals were kept in an outside shed.
The mother screamed and shouted at the child at all times of the day and neighbours heard her crying and sobbing when she was locked in her bedroom, which the couple used as a storage area. Teachers at both the girl's infant and junior schools noticed abnormal behaviour by her.
It’s disgraceful! If people don’t want children, why do they continue to have them? Why not have them adop..

Oh. Hang on.
The middle-aged couple, who live in the York area, adopted the girl when she was 11 months old.
*stunned face* Even the judge couldn’t supress his disbelief:
"It is surprising that the two of you were ever approved for adoptions because it has become painfully apparent you lack many of the skills, the aptitude and the patience that is required to bring up a child," the Recorder of York, Judge Stephen Ashurst, told them.
"There is evidence that you (the mother) at times seemed to care more for the pets and the animals within the home than for (the child)."
Barristers for both defendants described them as "inadequate" people who had not been vindictive or evil.
How were they ever approved as adoptive parents? We are constantly told that the adoption process is long, complicated and intrusive. What went wrong?

Because something went very badly wrong.
The girl was so badly damaged she now lives in a residential home because her behaviour is too extreme for her to live in a family setting, the court heard. She has failed to improve significantly.
And will likely be institutionalised for the rest of her life.
Alex Menary, for the mother, said her own health had deteriorated. She lacked empathy and understanding of how her own behaviour impacted on others, and the child had been difficult to handle.
How’d she pass the strict and rigorous adoption interviews then?
David Hall, for the father, said the mother had been the more dominant member of their relationship. He had been unable to respond to the child's needs and had had surgery for problems to his legs.
How’d he pass the strict and rigorous adoption interviews then?
The parents obstructed attempts by social workers to see the problems inside the house. When the council employees realised its state and made repeated efforts to get the couple to remove the clutter from the house and the bolt from the top of the child's bedroom door, the father kept the child imprisoned inside the room by holding the door shut against her.
Once again, people with draconian powers to ‘protect children’, powers they’ve been only too happy to use in other circumstances, have utterly failed to use them.

So why aren’t they sharing the dock with this couple?