There’s Trouble at’ Mill!

Accepting, as we should, the individual tragedies writ large on the sands of Sousse; it was never the best idea to bring an ‘ordinary’ family on to the BBC’s prime news show to tell their story.

I have often thought that the BBC Today team should bring more voices into its circle of reporters/broadcasters which it uses as a normality; amongst the many black or multi-coloured ones they have imported over the past few years. But, after listening to the stories produced by the family who reportedly heard the multiple gunmen shooting their fellow tourists on the Sousse beach; I am, suddenly, not so sure.

Quoting from what is a slightly faulty memory, they said:-

“Eeh, bah gum, there were shootin, and loud bangs, so we all hid in this cupboard.”

“and then we came out of the sea, and there was this tiny plane, or it might have been a jet-ski, and then, eeee, it were right frightening, he abseiled onto the beach!”

“And I am so glad to be here, and I were shocked!”

“and the mine disposables team were running, and the gunmen were, like, shot before being reprimanded; like!”

and they will come; except in Baltimore

I note that a contributor on another blog to which I contribute delivered a eulogy to the life of freedom in the America he sees today. If that is what he sees, and believes, good luck to him!

However, just beneath the surface, there are roiling tensions from the huge and ever-widening gap between Black and White Americans today.

As many know I hold sporting endeavours with supreme disinterest; but I also accept that I am in a minority, both here in England, as well as in America. To the vast majority of Americans and their British cousins, sport remains the ultimate dream; to win, to compete, to endure, to admire, to envy and to follow. As I wrote, it all just leaves me stone cold, but; if that is what turns their wheels, why not?

So I just wonder what our good and true contributor friend thought about the Baseball game played on April 29th to an entirely empty stadium. Empty because the game between the Baltimore Orioles and the Chicago White Sox was scheduled at the same time as the Black-run City of Baltimore’s Administration and Police stated that they could not guarantee the safety of the fans.

As Rush Limbaugh said:-

That’s right, my friends.  Baltimore is going to pay tribute to gangs and community organizers and freelance thugs today.  The Baltimore Orioles will play at Camden Yards without fans because it’s too dangerous.  You know how much economic impact a baseball game, a baseball season has in Baltimore that’s being shut down today?  It’s incredible, the economic impact of a home game for the Baltimore Orioles, and it’s just gonna be wiped out.
Because they don’t have the courage to let fans in, because they don’t think they can control the riffraff.  This is unprecedented.  According to John Thorn, the official historian for Major League Baseball, this will be a first.  There has never been a game played before an empty stadium. The previous low record for attendance happened on September 28, 1882, for a game in Worcester, Massachusetts.  The lowest attended game was then, and 1882 is back in the days of the founding of the game.


Rush only got one thing wrong. The stadium had to close the gates, because the Police had been withdrawn, and the Mayor had virtually handed the entire City over to the Black hoodlums!

Give the f@**ckers power, and they will f’#@cking use it!.

Writing, as I do, as an elderly and old-fashioned Englishman; I am often puzzled by the use, by politicians, of the oldest trick in the political armoury: along with its bland acceptance by the 57-million strong herd of mute sheep which is the British voting population. The politicians write, discuss, amend and then vote into Law proposals to combat a certain problem; and then profess complete surprise and dismay when others then use this Law in an entirely different manner, against people who could not possibly be considered active in regard to the first problem. Allow me to intrude upon your comfortable existences on this late June day, and, by giving examples; to tell you how you have been lied to in the past, and how you will almost definitely be lied to in the future.

Remember the ASBO, or the Anti-Social Behaviour Order? They came about through the Blair Govt’s need to show that they were ‘doing something’ about harrasment, public drunkenness and intimidation of neighbourhoods. The intent, or at least the published intent, was aimed at teenaged gang members who could be singled out, and banned from congregating with their fellow-members. Unfortunately, the use of ASBOrders went out into the wider world, and they were used to supposedly stop a young woman from committing suicide by jumping off bridges, to stop pigs from digging under a fence; an ASBO was proposed to stop a pet sheep from eating cemetery flowers, but this was rescinded when the true dastardly culprits were discovered: namely, a pair of wild deer owned by Princess Michael ( who strangely enough was not threatened with an ASBO); and a woman being banned from her own privately-owned home because the neighbours objected to her visitors. ASBOs were later removed from Statute, and replaced by the less-easily remembered CBO or Criminal Behaviour Order, which is a bit like a C.B.E. but much easier to obtain.

Then we could move to the well-loved (by the authoritarians amongst us) R.I.P.A., otherwise known as the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act. Now this small treasure was dreamt up by the Snooper brigade during a long wet dream to allegedly make things easier to intercept the communications of terrorists and others who would wish us harm, and this noble endeavour was promoted as doing just that. Up to the present date, a grand total of ONE prosecution involving ‘National Security’ has been successful. Plenty more intrusions of personal privacy have taken place under RIPA, such as the secret surveillance and spying by Poole Borough Council to check whether a family was justified in claiming a school place for their child; or such vile and serious crimes as Test purchases of a puppy, Test purchase of dating agency services , Surveillance of tarmac re-surfacing service, Movement of Pigs, Fraudulent Escort Agency , Dog related offences, including fouling; along with four acts of the deadly Fly Tipping menace, as well as the heinous and troubling ‘Smoking in non-smoking premises. In my own Durham County, the Council officers approved over two hundred surveillance operations, resulting in ONE conviction, again for Fly Tipping.

So, to the reason for my diatribe. We are about to be deluged with reasons why we should embrace the Extremism Bill, along with EDOs, or Extremism Disruption Orders. Now I am all in favour of disrupting terror planners or facilitators, or indeed whatever; but the wording of these EDOs gives a latitude so wide you could drive a cruise ship through the definitions, and no-one would notice. The EDOs would be used to go “beyond terrorism” to “eliminate extremism in all its forms”. EDOs would be triggered by “harmful activities of extremist individuals who spread hate but do not break laws”. For a court to impose restrictions upon an individual, it would have to be persuaded that the individual was spreading, inciting, promoting or justifying hatred on the grounds of disability, gender, race, religion, sexual orientation and/or transgender identity”.  The orders will also be used to “tackle those venues and facilitators that help extremists to continue their activities”.

Let us just examine, in more detail the underlined sentence! If I write that I believe homosexuality is a perversion, and that homosexuals are perverts; that is my own opinion. But it could, and indeed would, be argued that I am preaching hatred of both the act, as well as the actor. I believe that the reader can fill in the blanks as well as I can. Some may well state that the EDL, when marching and demonstrating against the Islamisation of Great Britain, are themselves ‘extremists’ because they are stating a view contrary to the received view of those who rule us, which is that Islam, and all Muslims, are just defending their religious views, and besides that they don’t really mean what they say abehead-those-who-insult-islamwhen they call for ‘All Infidels who preach against Islam to be beheaded!’. The BNP would probably be the first port of call for the ‘Speech Fuzz’, because they openly state that all Muslims should be deported. Maybe I agree with them. maybe I don’t, but again, I repeat that the ‘deporting’ bit is their opinion; and are we now going to ban or lock people up for having or stating an opinion?

So write to your MP, and state that the EDO is indeed a step too far, and should be the subject of a mssive rethink, before we wander down the slippery road towards this, along with its very home here!

and The Sun rises to the occasion

I am no fan of the Sun newspaper, I consider its editorial and reader policies to be aimed at the lowest common denominator possible; with the extra addition of the daily foray into mental masturbation. Sport, tits, ‘Slebs’ gossip, they’re all in the pages which I normally consider unfit to wrap chips in. But, very occasionally, they produce a small, pure gem which deserves a wider, more discerning and educated audience: especially in view of the ongoing charade of the Labour leadership.

The Sun, with the active participation of Guido as cheerleader, has produced, (without paywall) a forensic piece with specific regard to the rule of Burnham when he was Secretary of State for Health, in the good old days before Stafford, along with its hospital, became truly toxic.

Sir Ian Kennedy, chairman of the Healthcare Commission which regulated NHS care standards at the time, said the estimated 1,200 needless deaths in four years constituted the most shocking scandal he had investigated.

Yet not a single public sector employee was properly held to account and scores of legal challenges have been launched by patients’ families.

So, just for a change, read The Sun, when it produces news, and concentrated comment: like newspapers should always do!

if he rolls on top; its goodbye Vienna!

Along with a considerable portion of the British population, I am, once more, trying to lose weight. At this point, according to various charts and stats, I am obese, weighing some sixty-odd pounds above an ideal weight for my height. As I know and accept that this much extra weight is bad not only for my heart, but also for the rest of my body’s system; I am trying to do something about it; not, I would add, for the first time, but hopefully, this time I shall succeed.

A couple of years back, I was shopping in my local supermarket, when I spotted the most appalling sight. A small boy, about five years old was skipping along in front of his father. The father was not just fat, he was grossly huge; he waddled along, leaning backwards to balance his enormous gut as he moved slowly forwards. He obviously worried about his son, calling out to him not to hurt himself as he skipped along the aisle, but I wondered if he really understood the grave danger that he himself was facing. Illnesses such as heart disease, stroke, diabetes, problems with bone joints stressed beyond belief; the list goes on. Unfortunately he is probably doomed to an early death, or at least prolonged illness, as his very education has been lacking in the information needed to make him understand he has choices, and paths to choose; apart from the one he is so obviously shuffling down at present.

I am not a great fan of the dreaded ‘Nanny State’, with some ‘gummint’ spy or official telling us what not to place in our mouths or shopping trolleys, but surely we can come up with an idea which attempt to inform the population of the problems facing them if they do not change their very lifestyles. I recently visited a zoo near Colchester, whilst visiting with my grandson; along with a fair cross-section of the mobile British population, and it truly was a chastening vision of how we actually live. The zoo itself wasn’t the greatest, badly planned and laid-out, but the worst thing wasn’t how the animals were treated, that was reserved for the human visitors. Row after row of fast-food stalls, kiosks, surrounded by a miasma of saturated fat and equally-saturated fat human beings. I would estimate that the normal slim or sensible visitor was outnumbered almost three-to-one by the fat, the very fat and the ‘Jeez-how-does-she-walk’ variety.

Some state that everyone should go their own way, and do their own thing; and they well may have a point, and I am no great fan of so-called ‘Slebs’ such as Jamie Oliver and his crusades for school meals and such; but we should be at least having a deep think; never mind a deep-pan pizza! I would leave you with this small, well, relatively small comment from a forum which was populated by people on a certain diet.

I’ve been on exactly one week. Went from 328 to 310.8. Which is a  loss of 17.2 pounds. I’ve cheated a little bit, ate some mixed nuts and a bunch of buffalo wings over the weekend.

That, folks, works out at 23 ½ Stones.

Dear Roman Catholics; and people worldwide…..

You trusted us on the  Spanish Inquisition.

You trusted us on the Nazis.

You trusted us when we told you those small children would be entirely safe with our priests, despite overwhelming proof to the contrary.

You really trusted us when scandal erupted over the totally-crooked and criminal activity of the Vatican Bank.

You also trusted us before the Adoption Scandals broke in Spain and Australia.

So please, even pretty please; Trust us when we speak out on Climate Change, because we know of what we speak, and its all for the poor people, anyway! Ignore the fact that we are people leading a Religion; ignore the equal fact that we quote no realistic science at all; ignore the truth that the vast majority of the science studies, statistics and volumes of so-called ‘proof’ come from sources tainted by government grants, from endorsement by crooked and venal politicians, ignore the fact that those who speak out against the Gospels of Climate Change are unbelievers, indeed even Deniers; and when you think of that awful charge against anyone that he is a ‘Denier’: just return to the One True Fold, and accept that We know what is good for both you, and the World.

Your Brother on High


I am shocked;…

and also horrified!

Not by the simple fact that some bent celebrity bloke and his legally-acquired rent boy have hurriedly left their ‘glamorous honeymoon tour’ in Honduras, as they literally had it coming; but shocked by the simple truth that neither Fry, who is a talented actor and comedian, and therefore fairly well educated, nor his bent ‘wusband’ had actually bothered to check on T’Internet regarding Honduras’ attitude to shirt-lifters and similar perverts.

Seeding the Party Line

I am a regular listener to the Farming Programme, broadcast just before 6.00 a.m. weekdays, with a longer stint on a Saturday. It is presented and produced almost totally by women; and I make that observation with the clarifying comments that it is either possibly a task which is reserved for the fairer sex, or equally a task which is deemed to be ‘the pits’ as far as the BBC higher echelons agree, Either way, it is normally a well-presented, lucid and factual commentary upon the various sections of agriculture within Britain today.

You learn a lot by just listening to the usually well-informed reporters, as they bring their stories, comment and news about British farms and farmers to the radio waves, and hence, to our ears.You would have heard about the lunacies perpetrated on English farmers by the Labour Farm Ministers as they negotiated and set fast the Subsidy Regime. Read and absorb the information within this online review, as it details, in painful precision, how badly English farmers are treated by the Agency in question.

But I do not write in unqualified support of this small radio programme, mainly because there has been a sinister increase in pushing and praising schemes which are loved by the liberal-lefties at the BBC, along with buzz-phrases for those same schemes.There has been a long term effort to bring about acceptance of GM plants, seeds and the like; inclusive of interviews with two farmers, one organic, one not; wherein both used the exact words “As we now have to feed the Global world, GM would make things so much easier.” Now say I am cynical, but the only people who actually benefit from GM crops are the multi-nationals, such as Monsanto, who make those Frankenstein foods possible, and market them with such vigour. The Farming Programme producers and reporters also seem to have a love-affair with Climate Change, or Global Warbling, or whatever, and treat it as a fact, instead of an unproven, but very, very expensive theory supported by the Greenies, most politicians and very few truly independent scientists.

But there again, if you raise your concerns with this huge publicly-fundedbroacasting monolith; you are just ignored, so the question must be asked, ‘Why indeed bother?’

Remember those ‘Gulf of Tonkin’ attacks, anyone?

So, you are part of a nation; a nation which has been patched together from ten thousand villages, and towns,; with borders which date from colonial times; you have been ruled by dictators, overrun by so-called Democratic Armies, you have sent those same Armies back home, and you state that you, along with your ‘elected’ Government, can rule your country. But that rule is so one-sided that a good slice of your Nation’s people decide to rebel against your Government, and ally themselves with a bunch of murderous Caliphate-seeking madmen. That bunch proceeds to invade your towns, and your cities, and the vaunted Army melts away before their frenzied attacks.

You ask for help, from the same people who invaded your country to rid you of that dictator; ask them to train your armies, and get them to fly and bomb  the invader; and you also get fresh arms and soldiers from your worst enemy, so that you might regain some territory.

That fresh infusion of arms, and training does nothing, because your Armies are badly-trained, ill-paid, cowardly, and totally lacking in moral fibre; so you plead with that foreign President to give ever more training battalions, so that you might claim some victory, any victory; and all the time you are hoping against hope that same foreign President does not notice that a huge shadowy flag is waving over your country, and the flag resembles that of Vietnam.

and it was the Children who, indeed, suffered!

For all the senior religious leaders’ promised ‘lessons learned’ along with all the rest of the lying perverts’ cover-up from the Anglican Church, the Roman Catholic church, the Methodist church; this is possibly the first move by ANY Church leader to lay the ultimate blame with the senior churchmen responsible for the years of surreptitious cover-up, of lying, of the suffering in silence of countless children.

The words of the Christian God went:- “Suffer little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God.  Verily I say unto you, Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child shall in no wise enter therein”.

The scum who posed as priests, vicars, men of God; whatever the name, those who were protected, and violated the sanctuary which was the trust given them by the very title which they wore, have now mostly been exposed; many have died since the commission of their crimes, but those in charge have prospered,have lived the good life, most have not been exposed for the facilitators and veritable organisers of this terrible indignities handed out to their silent, suffering victims.

Unlike most of England, I had personal knowledge of such a pervert. I walked, talked, laughed and indeed, worked alongside this man: and until we were told, from the pulpit of the church which I previously attended, that he had been arrested for gross indecency against a group of altar-boys, that he had amassed a collection of child pormography which literally staggered the police investigation: he walked and talked as I, such was the level of deceit in this evil clown.

I asked him, whilst on a prison visit, what had caused the commission of this vile crime? All I found was drivel and treachery, all I heard was a self-serving bleat that he could not help himself!

and it tends towards infinity…

One of the extremely small number of benefits available to those UK Subjects (I refuse to state ‘citizens’ because that refers to the f’’*++ing EU) who reside in Scotland; is the fact that the Scottish Crown Office is independent.

We shall now sit back and watch as the London Crown Prosecution Service desperately tries to prove,conclusively, that 2 + 2 = 47 loaves; or that the circle can be squared; rather than investigate or prosecute one of the Establishment’s own!

Don’t eat the people in the cars!

We are told of the ‘horrifying’ video which shows a tourist getting mauled and killed by a lion a few days ago. We’re also told that the lioness went right in to the car, and savaged the tourist.

Strangely enough, we were also told that ‘there were no plans to destroy the animal’.

Now this is why I tend to get a bit annoyed with the reporting, and the twist, or ’spin’ that somehow it was the lion’s fault. Rubbish, the lioness was just doing exactly what she was supposed to do, a bloody terrifying, bloodthirsty carnivorous animal with her instincts running from aeons ago: a huntress, a stalker, a curious animal which can run at 60 m.p.h.; and comes equipped with claws 1 ½ “ long sheathed in paws the size of your head, and a set of razor-sharp teeth in a mouth where the jaws can exert 650 pounds of pressure.

If the people who drive along with their windows open get into trouble; it is exactly their own fault. The driver, for heaven’s sake, was a Lion Park employee. There are signs all over the bloody place telling anyone who can read that lions kill people, so keep your bloody windows up.

I have been around similar set-ups both in South Africa and in England, and the one thing you do before entering the lion enclosure is make certain that not only the windows are all closed tight, but also the doors are all locked. We had a lioness jump up and sit on the bonnet of our car as we had slowed right down, but I wasn’t worried, because the lioness couldn’t open the doors: because people are smarter than lions; not quicker, but smarter.

The Lion Park had three attacks in four months; but neither the Lion Park nor the lions were at fault; it was all down to the stupid bastards who simply know better than the experts, the ones who just know that they can get a quick photo before that nice cuddly lioness gets too close and ………………………………………………..


You can gamble, and you can win!

The ramps went down, the bayonets glistened, the boots crunched onto the gravel. The landing craft emptied of their human, breathing cargoes, the assault ships motored slowly as the next sections of soldiers moved forwards, and then down the cargo nets into the landing craft, which had the blood swept from the flat decks by the ocean waves, as they returned to the noisy hell which was the five designated beaches of Normandy some seventy years ago this day. From the organised chaos of Gold & Sword; to the bloodstained sands of Omaha beaches, We had returned!

The photo depicts the sacrifice seventy years ago this morning;  on one portion of one British sector of a Normandy beach.

June 6th 1944 is a day which most British people readily recognise, but the younger members of our fractured society have not the simplest idea of how important that windy, rainy day in midst 1944 really was. I have more personal associations than many with that day, as well as that date.

As General Eisenhower  stated, “you will bring about the destruction of the German war machine, the elimination of Nazi tyranny over the oppressed peoples of Europe, and security for ourselves in a free world”.

One hundred and fifty thousand men, thousands of ships, veritable clouds of aircraft stood ready to commence the advance into Nazi-held Europe, and all was balanced in the hope that the Germans would not detect that Patton’s Army was actually a phantom Army. Eisenhower had given the brilliant yet erratic General George Patton command over the strategy ‘Operation Fortitude’ which was hopefully destined to retain the German panzer divisions sited and settled in the wrong place, so that the massed and fearsome mechanical might of the German Wehrmacht’s battle-hardened panzers would not be available to defend against the actual invasion, planned for the beaches of Normandy. The regimented lines of inflatable rubber tanks, the echelons of flimsy wooden barges which neither would nor could move, based and tied up in every inlet along the Norfolk and Kent coastlines, huge encampments of deserted tents, the runways cluttered with aircraft made from balsa wood, tied down so they would not blow away; huge numbers of radio sets all blurting out reams of coded messages, all of course garbage. The local newspapers even printed casualty lists of the ‘accidental deaths’ from all the training. All of the aforementioned ploys were based to give the illusion that the Allied strike would progress across the shortest, and of course the most logical, section of the English Channel, from Dover to Calais. The possibility of a massive long-range expedition, sailing from English Southern Channel ports, travelling over one hundred miles to strike at, and then land on, the beaches of Normandy, was discounted by all except a few prescient German Generals, and the ablest of these was Field-Marshal Erwin Rommel.

Rommel’s plan was to bring forward the upgrade to the French portion of the ‘Atlantic Wall’, but limited by supplies, problems due to the bitter feuding between the Wehrmacht and the civilian Todt Organization, the reinforcing of the strong points deemed necessary by Rommel was behind schedule. The one item which might have proven crucial to Germany’s defence of the Atlantic coast were the heavy-calibre long-range multiple-gunned batteries sited miles inland; such as the Merville Battery. With cannon which could be guided by accurate radar, Allied warships with the necessary big-calibre guns would face a formidable foe which outranged them, and might also have inflicted huge losses on an armada of small landing craft heading in to a defended beach. Rommel also planned to move his Panzer divisions to strong points back from the coastline, ready to move and decimate lightly-armoured infantry.

Fortunately for the Allies, Eisenhower’s plan to provide Hitler with Operation Fortitude; ‘the only logical route’ worked successfully, with Patton’s ‘Phantom army’, along with his proven reputation as a master strategist, and a soldier who delivered; giving the Nazi leader the sure and certain proof that Calais was the target, meant that Hitler overruled his Generals once again, and kept the panzers standing in Northern France, in order to repel an enemy which never came. The batteries nearly made a difference, but the Allied plan for a night paratroop drop and attack on the batteries by land worked, but only just, as a combination of navigational errors, Rommel’s canny prediction and flooding of the marshes, nearly resulted in the whole attack being aborted; but the Paratroopers won through, amidst terrible losses, and the heavy weaponry was silenced. The main American and British Paratroop night assault inland from the beaches of Normandy, designed to stop the Germans from advancing on the beachhead armies, worked up to a point, but the slaughter, which took nearly twenty-percent of those brave men who dropped from the skies, was the subject of many sleepless nights for the Allied High Command.

The British and Canadian forces went in from those landing-craft on a broad front over the beaches, sands and tank-traps on Gold, Sword and Juno beaches beneath a furious Allied bombardment from both sea and air. Despite a spirited opposition from German forces entrenched off-beach, the masterplan worked and Allied vehicles, tanks and mobile weaponry, along with thousands of troops, began consolidating their gains, and moving inland, as did the Americans who landed on Utah beach, which was relatively undefended. Unfortunately, the American invasion forces destined for Omaha came up against a well-organised, entrenched and superbly-outfitted German defence. The ‘swimming tanks’, designed and tasked to break through the defences above the beaches, all sank, overwhelmed by the heavy swell of the Channel, as they were launched too far out; and America’s prime assault soldiers died by the hundred as they stepped off their landing craft, or were machine-gunned as they crouched behind the virtually non-existent cover on that flat killing-ground named Omaha. Finally, brave men literally fought their way up the cliffs, aided by naval shellfire which evened the opposition out by destroying German emplacements. The Omaha assault cost 2400 American lives, but by sheer guts and determination landed over 34,000 troops who then were able to push forward towards the enemy.

The secret weaponry, the massive floating ‘Mulberry harbours’, PLUTO, the fuel pipeline laid on the sea-bed to supply much-needed fuel for the masses of armour which would head ever towards Germany, the ‘Flail’ tanks which exploded the land-mines buried in the sand; the intelligence-led air assault on the railways and marshalling points of the German army, as well as the men with ice-water running through their veins,  who swam ashore on those Normandy beaches in the dead of night over many weeks, testing the ground, the sand and of course the mines and tank traps: they all played their part on and after that amazing day which literally was the true ‘beginning of the end’ for Nazi Germany. The Russians pressed ever westward, but, with Stalin’s scheming well evident, overran much of Eastern Europe in a second conquest while doing so.

If the worst fears of the Allied High Command were reached, and the invasion had to be turned into a retreat, who knows what our history would have become? I doubt if Great Britain would have been invaded, with the Germans ever more tied up and steadily retreating across the vast expanses of Russia from their high-points in the Caucasus, and at Stalingrad; but would America instead have turned away from Europe, and instead concentrated on the expanding Japanese Empire, which of course was the reason why the Americans had declared war in the first place? Yes, Great Britain would have been safe, but it would have been a very, very different British Isles to the one we know today.

305 days later after that bloody 6th June 1944, Germany surrendered unconditionally, Hitler having committed suicide.

My personal connections? My Uncle died just days after D-Day, and his remains lie in a tiny cemetery, in a Normandy village named Bonnebosq. My father served in the Army throughout the War, despite having an automatic deferral, coming as he did from County Down. I was a child of the Second World War; but my daughter, the apple of her father’s eye, today a successful Professional Mechanical Engineer; was born on June Sixth, 1970.

A repeat post from last year!

Unsafe at any speed!

Its all very well when our tech-friendly giant Google says that their self-drive cars are safe, and the only accidents happened when human beings are behind the wheel.

However, I happen to know more than the average person about how the electronic packages; which control the steering, the parking and, most importantly, the braking; are actually manufactured, tested and supplied to car manufacturers around the world.

Imagine, if you would, a production line staffed by people who have educational achievements equal to, or more usually much less than, basic pass results at a Secondary school. Imagine also the fact that they are paid the minimum wage, with the prospect of doing a mind-numbingly boring job for the rest of their miserable working days; and then examine the following. What motivation is there to excel at their jobs? None! Where is the urge to help your employer grow, and avoid mistakes? Nowhere to be found.

So your minimum wage worker, who not only doesn’t know, but also doesn’t care; occasionally inserts a diode, a small electronic component, the wrong way round on a circuit board, without either thinking or noticing. Because of the need for speed on the product line, very few components are actually tested before your component, and probably hundreds if not thousands more like it, are sent out to major car manufacturers the world over, from Germany to China. The manufacturers’ production staff then fit these ‘safety-enhancing’ components onto their vehicles during assembly, and, again partly because of the need for speed, and partly because if the component is activated prematurely, the whole component needs to be renewed; nothing is ever tested correctly. Thousands of cars, all over the world, are then driven to dealerships and customers, all with a basic flaw already built-in to the ‘safety-enhanced’ vehicle.

And then ponder on what you get. Do you, like the GM executives, wonder if the reports coming back to General Motors about an ignition key defect are correct, and if so; do you hide those same reports from top management? Do you hurriedly recall 2.6 million vehicles and accept total responsibility; or do you fight these lawsuits through court action until the full extent of your criminal conspiracy is unveiled? Do you, like the Japanese airbag maker Takata, wait until six deaths and more than 100 injuries force the largest recall in automotive history? Or in the case of which I write, do you wait until at least ten people die because they relied on lane-following sensors, for example, to work correctly before recalling ten thousand cars fitted with components which do not work?

Macclesfield for ever!

As is possibly widely known, I hold absolutely no opinions on, or interest in, any sporting activities at all, with the one exception being shove-halfpenny. Football, athletics, F1 racing, they are all the same to me, totally useless but amazingly profitable exercises in mass hypnosis. I mean, what pervades the brains of perfectly lucid and sensible human beings when it comes to supporting or watching ‘your team’ lose, or win? I just do not see the point. My late brother, who was the ‘sporting nutcase’ in our own family, once unguardedly asked if I had watched the ‘Triple Crown’ on television. When I replied that I had been watching a rivetting documentary upon the African Fish Eagle, he moaned that ‘I had no soul’.

Well, perhaps I lack the competitive spirit which features so much in just about all forms of sporting activity; but even a man such as I can find just a touch of humour in one town’s allegedly refreshing attitude to the volumes of crap which seem to be cascading down upon FIFA, and especially the Qatar venue for the 2022 World Cup.