3558 posts • joined Wednesday 28th February 2007 21:13 GMT
With the productive part of the economy seriously screwed by the non-productive part (New Labour and investment banking alike); there's soon going to be millions of people out of work and desperately needing new forms of employment.
And what better way than having the jobless pressed into service snooping on all our phone calls, IMs and web surfing? Even better, single mums will be able to spy on people from the comfort of their own homes - so no need to pay child care.
In Jacqui's world, every day will be like waking up in Pyongyang without the Dear Leader's sense of whimsy.
Lewis: you missed out a key piece of advice
For some of us with busy lives*; El Reg is the only place to look for post Cnidarian survival guides (and Paris Hilton updates).
You should have included the useful hint that many jellyfish venoms can by pissing on it - the wound, not the jellyfish - that just makes them angry.
* for certain definitions of the word 'busy'.
Our ongoing delusion
When are British politicians finally going to grasp the fact we're not a major power any more and we really don't have huge interests around the World that need defending. We're just the latest big European power to find the world's moved on. The Swedes used to dominate the military balance in Central Europe, now they've decided they can do much better selling flat-pack to the rest of the World whilst defending their own territory. Do the Dutch really miss their global empire and massive Navy? What about the Portuguese and the Spanish?
Let's just accept it, Britain: it's a bit crap.
Surely time for an in-depth Reg investigation of the IWF?
My eminently sensible suggestion is that anyone who wants to apply for a job with the IWF is the sort of reactionary Daily Mail 'just think of the children' busybody who should be banned from such a responsible position. The one who slimed his way on to Channel 4 last night - well he's the sort of creep that my mum used to warn me about.
The only people getting aroused by this album are the likes of Jacqui Smith who even now is probably writhing in ecstasy at the prospect of lots more stuff getting banned soon.
Yeah I know, I've put the thought of an aroused Jacqui Smith in your mind now...
£100 million in borrowing?
What was he doing, paying off an Ocean Finance loan?
Why don't I believe her?
(Apart from the obvious)
Boris Johnson knew beforehand and David Cameron was also informed immediately before.
Are we supposed to believe that servants would have left either the Home Secretary or Prime Minister ignorant of the situation if a senior Tory had got on the phone to tell them this was an outrage?
That Jacqui Smith is ignorant is a given, that she was ignorant of this is a good old fashioned Melton Mowbray of a lie.
This could backfire
Clever games companies will simply stick the Timothy score on the box.
'A must have game!' (Joystick wigglers)
'Awesome' (The Times)
'36/39' (Timothy Guide)
'New Diana Revelations' (The Daily Express)
One for the lawyers
Now the highest court in Europe has concluded that the UK has breached the ECHR, does this mean that anyone else who has had their records retained on the database can sue the government?
Kettle meet pot, pot meet kettle
'She accused the Tories of condoning "systematic" leaking of confidential Home Office information.'
A bit like those helpful-to-the-Labour-Party leaks from inside the Treasury that kept ending up with Robert Peston at the BBC?
F'rkrissakes Jacqui when you're in a hole stop digging instead of asking for a bigger shovel.
Lay a cable between Britain and Iceland and tap into some of their enormous untapped hydroelectric potential. We get a huge amount of clean electricity, they get lots of hard currency and a diversified economy.
One simple question
What are these carriers for?
Are they another part of the MoD's macho strategy to try and fool the world + dog into thinking that Britain isn't a clapped out medium-sized country, or a turbine powered job creation scheme for Gordon Brown's constituents?
Jacqui Smith told me...
...that Britain was crawling with terrorists who were only minutes away from exploding a ricin laced fizzy drinks can containing anthrax.
So I'd have thought that the anti-terror police would have been far too busy protecting us from mad mullahs and animal rights nutters to bother investigating government leaks.
which is usually found hanging around 'lolz' and should be permanently joined to it - with a rusty nail embedded in the hand of the person who typed it in - but then I'm just a soft-hearted liberal.
@ Craig Roberts
'Is there (and if there isn't - why the hell not?) a way for the general public to force a General Election? '
In short. No there isn't. The UK constitution (written on the back of a thousand now long-lost fag packets) has a model where the electorate turn all political decisions over to their betters in the House of Commons and then has no involvement in the 'democratic process' for the next few years. The only way an election can be called are:
1: at the end of a Parliamentary term (a maximum of five years);
2: the decision of the then Prime Minister to call an election at a time of his or her choosing;
3: the government losing a vote of 'no confidence' in the House of Commons - although this is more the done thing than any particular piece of statute. This is how the last Labour government fell in 1979;
4: the government losing a finance bill (the Budget) - again, not constitutionally required, but IIRC it has happened at least once in the 19th Century.
The monarch has no ability to independently dissolve Parliament. There is a fig leaf of doing so when the Prime Minister requests it prior to an election.
I do like the Eddie Izzard idea though.
From the quote they're not saying we have to be friends with China, or even approve of their politics; only that we cannot change them into a Western democracy. I think the report is calling for a new form of detente - we have profound differences with the other powers in the World, but those differences should not prevent us from engaging with them on matters of common concern.
An interesting defence - use of the part of the Constitution that guarantees your free speech to deprive people of theirs. Gotta love the First Amendment, it's pretty much good for any purpose - if only we had something similar over here on the right-hand bank of the Atlantic.
Have you spotted
That when James Bond appears in 'Dr. No' he's played by Sean Connery, but when he leaves 'A Quantum of Solace' he's played by Daniel Craig? How does this sort of basic continuity error slip through? I think someone in the BBC should apologise.
Don't remember the torture scene - was that before or after Demi Moore and the potter's wheel?
And 'supertroopers'? What are they; a low-key ABBA tribute band?
@ jake @ Anonymous Coward
'Yes. The world is getting warmer. When was the last time the Thames froze over?'
Since you ask it was the winter of 1962 - 63 when it froze as far downstream as Teddington Lock. If you're asking when was the last Frost Fair then it was 1813 - 14 which is recognised as an exceptionally cold winter even for the Little Ice Age, possibly as a result of the colossal eruption of Tambora in Indonesia. It's questionable whether frost fairs were possible much later, not just because of a general warming trend, but also because the construction of London Bridge from 1825 and the Embankment changed the flow of the river, making it faster and much less likely to freeze.
'It's still not as warm as it was in Roman times. When was the last time you drank wine from grapes grown along Hadrian's Wall?'
Actually you could grow vines at Hadrian's Wall today, it's just that it doesn't make economic sense. I've heard this story about Romans and Northumberland wine a number of times, but I can't find a definitive source apart from Freddie Forsyth blustering on 'Question Time', so I wonder if the Romans ever did have vineyards that far north.
As for temperatures changing. Yes they do, it is the RATE of change in the current warming phase that is abnormal compared to other changes in the Holocene.
@ Anonymous Coward said:
'One problem we have is that severe volcanic activity a couple of centuries ago threw a lot of ash into the air and resulted in wonderful sunsets (no you don't see sunsets like Turner painted, but you did back then)'
Already factored into the calculations and we have plenty of empirical evidence from eruptions such as El Chichon and Pinatubo to know the amount of cooling these eruptions would cause.
As for not seeing sunsets like Turner's ummmm - perhaps some of Turner's paintings are impressionistic?
'Then of course we had the industrial revolution, you should therefore have seen all those CO2 emissions producing significant global warming over the 18th and 19th centuries - but that doesn't seem to be the case from the data we have.'
We're burning an order of magnitude more carbon than we were in the 18th and 19th Century when only a tiny minority of the population were consuming fossil fuels and even then only consuming a small fraction of the energy we use today.
Meg (yes I read it as Hitler as well) prattled: 'The Identity and Passport Service is still in the process of procurement of specific biometric systems,'
Ummm, according to Wacky Jacqui, 2009 will see the glorious issuing of the first ID cards to foreign residents and the great unwashed gagging for a Blunkettcard.
By the sounds of it they still haven't decided what system to buy, let alone install it, test it and enroll people. How the hell can the Home Office claim to be in a position to roll out the cards and infrastructure when the basics haven't been established?
@ Anonymous Coward
'but haven't the tories and that 3rd party stated they would not follow this through? And there will almost certainly be a general election in 2010-2011?'
Yes but there's a terrifyng prospect that Labour will go to the polls with a snap election in the next few months under a campaign that can be summed up as 'free money!', 'beastly Tories talking down the Pound', 'more money for pensioners!', 'horrible American mortgages', 'lovely money for nurses!', 'ooooh look - puppies.' And any mention of civil liberties won't get a look in.
Knowing the British public, a quick tax cut is all that Labour will need to get Jacqui's GIMP and ID cards.
Let me get this straight...
...People in certain occupations are banned from joining extreme political parties. This is well known and yet it looks like people in these positions have still given their job details to the BNP - which then recorded it.
Guess the entry requirements for Master Race aren't what they used to be.
Now the thorny question remains - is this a shocking intrusion on personal information or just hilarious.
The English libel laws are now such a farce that I'm amazed they've not been comprehensively binned and replaced by something more compatible with human rights legislation such as the ECHR.
Since Labour have legislated on everything else up to and including selling squirrels (you can't!) why have they left these dreadful laws on the statute book?
Have to agree - it's too complex
I've just tried installing GPG on a new Linux box, I followed the instructions and what happens? The make file doesn't - well - make. The error is unintelligible to me, I have absolutely no idea how to fix the problem and so my machine goes without protection.
The suggestion above that Thunderbird needs to ship with this sort of security out of the box is an excellent one. Install it (preferably with a click interface) then follow the one-off wizard to set up protection.
'judge who famously interrupted a trial to ask what a web page was'
Actually the judge was doing everyone a favour not showing ignorance. The defence and prosecution were using different definitions of Internet technology which could have had some bearing on the outcome.
There have been attempts to improve this situation by getting the two sides to agree terminology and to introduce experts called amici curiae into trials where large amounts of specialised information must be discussed.
@ Tom Austin
'(Also, why hydrogen bombs in particular? What's wrong with basic atomic bombs? Or more hi-spec nuclear / neutron? Is there some kind of specific blast yield that only hydrogen bombs can deliver? Confused.)'
See it's cynics like you that spoil Scientology for everyone. L Ron spent literally *minutes* doing the exhaustive 'research' needed to come up with the 'evidence' that makes "Dianetics" the sort of book it is - a doorstop.
Somehow L Ron got that bit right*. H-bombs can have an unlimited yield, you're just limited by the amount of fusion fuel. Old-fashioned, bargain basement atom bombs are limited to less than a megaton - and here's a bit that will make the heart of a Brit swell with pride - the biggest ever fission bomb explosion was BRITISH - Orange Herald at 720 kilotonnes - even Xenu would be scared by that.
* I 'spose it's like monkeys and typewriters. If you leave a really shite science fiction author in front of a blank page long enough they might get something right. I think the BBC is trying something similar with their technology correspondents.
To combine threads
How can I use a Yorkshire pudding to solve 'The Italian Job'?
Love my Aspire One - but...
...the distributors of subnotebooks have got to get better at supporting the 'average' user. My Aspire One is brand new, but it has old versions of Firefox and Open Office pre-installed with no easy way of updating them to the newer releases.
So I've been on a steep learning curve to bring my machine up-to-date and make sure it is secure; I wouldn't like to see how my parents would cope. I've been using UNIX for [ahem] years now and it's still much fiddlier on the Aspire than it is on a Windows machine.
But it is kind of nice to be sudo ing again. ;)
My biggest bugbear...
...is that the greengrocers' apostrophe has escaped into the wild and can be found infesting the media section of Tesco like a particularly nasty boll weevil resulting in horrors like [and look away now if you're easily scared]
CD's and DVD's.
Ways of stopping this sort of problem
If this is more than someone covering their asses; then the supposed problem of voters removing their cards too early could have been prevented by basing the machine on an ATM which only releases a card when the transaction is complete. And perhaps a machine that displays 'Thank-you' to show the interaction is over.
Or a paper receipt containing a unique code and a phone number or URL that would let a voter check their vote at a later date.
Or, they could have used (and stop me if this gets too nose-bleedingly technical), a piece of paper, a pencil on a string and a box.
On the upside...
...the Chinese might be able to provide investigators with Bush's 'missing' email archive.
Post Office - they must be joking?
I queued for 20 minutes at a post office yesterday to post a parcel. Every other person was there putting money in or taking money out, paying bills, getting travel money, you name it... am I now going to have to stand in line while people have their eyeballs scanned three or four times before being told the machine isn't working.
And how long before the Paul Daniels fronted advertising campaign for Tesco Biometrics - with Clubcard points? Oooh probably shouldn't give them ideas, half the population would flock to Tescos if they thought they could get half price KitKats in exchange for their liberty.
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