Thursday, December 14, 2006

Why I'm not a LibDem.

A couple of years ago - before making the decision to join the Conservatives - I did one of those online "what party are you" questionaires which had me smack between the LibDems and the Tories.

In case I had any doubt that I made the right decision, Iain Dale is reporting that LibDem MP Sandra Gidley has called for a ban on school sports days as "Those children who are towards the end of the queue when the teams are being picked soon get the message and decide that they do not want to exercise" and it's humilitating for those who finish last.

What a load of ridiculous, PC, twaddle. I can speak from personal experience here - I was usually one of the last picked at sport (though for a strange period at around 13 when we did mini rugby during PE, I turned out to be pretty good at it and didn't get picked last - and I admit that felt great). However, it didn't stop me taking part - I was (and still am) rather proud of the fact that I managed to finish the 3000 metres every year at the school sports day - though I only avoided finishing last in my final year, and even that wasn't very impressive as a sporting achievement (a seventeen year old finishing ahead of only two 13 year olds doesn't exactly rank up there with the sinking of Bayern in extra time).

Life is full of adversity - we can't all be multi millionaire city traders, sports stars or thickos like Jade Goody. Children should enjoy their child hood, but don't wrap them up in cotton wool. Its a tough world out there, and they have to learn that at some point.

The fact that a LibDem MP can come out with this sort of garbage is exactly the reason I prefer the Conservatives.

Monday, December 11, 2006


I've been known, on occassion, to blog about the state of education. This Verizon Math blog is an outstanding example of why maths is important - even if you simply end up working in a call centre. The entire misunderstanding is based on the ability to understand the difference between 0.002 cent and 0.002 dollars.

What worries me is I could easily see the same experience happening in a UK Call Centre.

Living in a Siberian cave.

Do you live in a Siberian cave with no access to the print or television media, or are you incapable of understanding it? Then there's a job at Basildon Council's Planning Department for you.

A few weeks ago, a group of travellers were given five years temporary permission to stay at plots
they developed in Cranfield Park Avenue, Wickford. Basildon Council is appealing the decision because (according to the Southend Echo) of the travellers is Freddy Eastwood who "is a well-paid professional footballer earning £100,000-a-year and this may have affected the outcome."

Now that would usually sound fair enough - I don't expect local officials to have an in depth knowledge of the football team in the next town - even their goal scoring hero whose goals got Southend United promoted last season for the second season running and scored a vital freekick in the game that put Southend in the Carling Quarter Finals for the first time.

Except I do expect them to notice when a) the goal was against Manchester United and b) the result of said goal was a bunch of national newspaper articles talking about how he was about to get evicted from his house by Basildon Council.

Friday, December 08, 2006


A friend on IRC drew my attention to this report about Irish publicans complaining that random breath testing of drivers is hurting their income. They are demanding compensation.

So let me see if I have this straight. For years and years we've been watching ever more gruesome "Don't Drink and Drive" adverts. Despite this, plenty of fools have continued to do this, at the risk of destroying Christmas not only for their own families but for the families of the innocent people they kill. The Guards initiate a regieme of testing designed to catch the fools before they hit someone. This one actually works - in the sense that it appears it's reducing the number of people who are being fools.

And the publicans want to be compensated for the fact they are no longer serving drink to people who shouldn't be drinking.

Coming next, the local drug dealers ask for compensation for the losses incurred as the result of the most recent drug haul.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006


I read in the Telegraph that a member of the Bank of England monetary policy committee is calling for green belt land to be made available for housing, "particularly in areas where house prices were the highest." Well, that puts Brentwood fairly high up the list then.

Anyone care to speculate as to what proportion of Green Belt land in Conservative and Lib Dem constituencies will be rezoned as opposed to Labour ones?

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Making it up as you go along.

One Railway appear to be making the timetable to make their punctuality figures look better.

I arrived at Ingatestone station this morning to catch the 0933 to find there were delays. The screens weren't showing a 0933 service, but were showing a 0948 service that doesn't actually exist on the current timetable.

Are they taking lessons from Labour on how to massage the figures to look good?