* Posts by Pen-y-gors

3078 posts • joined 1 Oct 2010

Cops called after pair enter Canadian home and give it a good clean

Pen-y-gors
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Re: Milk in Bags?

Used to be quite common in the UK - decades ago. I seem to remember UHT coming in plastic bags. That was in the days when normal milk came in glass bottles, before they invented plastic. Last time I saw bags of milk was on Alderney about 30 years ago.

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UK defence secretary ponders £50m hit to terminate Capita recruiting contract

Pen-y-gors
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That would also require having people in the Civil Service capable of writing contracts that protect the interests of their employer.

I think a wider change is needed. So much incompetence and poor judgement in government is covered up because details cannot be published as they are "commercially confidential". These are contracts between the contractor and the public. All contracts, prices and terms for public sector work should be published. If they don't want light shone on their murky world, don't bid.

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Take my advice: The only safe ID is a fake ID

Pen-y-gors
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Re: Names are just weird...

I've been told that the surname of "English" is most likely an Irishman, and the surname of "Irish" is most likely from England. Go figure.

Well, duh, obviously! How else would it work? Englishman moves to Ireland in the 17th century. Locals just call him John the Englishman. Centuries later his Irish descendants have contracted it to Sean English.

You get the same in Wales with people called Sais or Saes or Sayce. Ancestor was English. It would get very complicated if everyone in Hemel Hempstead was called English Dave or English Mary or English Jeff or even the occasional Bangladeshi Ranya.

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Re: Also

I am irritated by my friend who called her daughter Niamh, and pronounces is Nee-Mah

There is a strong case for calling in Social Services to rescue the child from further damage.

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Pen-y-gors
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Re: It's all the rage!

I think Round the Horne ones were better.

Daphne Whitethigh

Celia Molestrangler

Chou En Ginsburg M.A. (failed)

J. Peasemold Gruntfuttock

Buffalo Sidney Goosecreature

and so many more... many, many more.

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Pen-y-gors
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Re: Starbucks and Foodbanks

The expression started when I used to add to the food bank basket in the supermarket every day at the end of my daily exercise walk. Now I do a weekly drop of agreed staples that benefit from buying in multiple packs.

We've gone a stage further - a group of people contribute cash, and our community shop then uses that to buy at wholesale prices in bulk from the cash-and-carry (who actually deliver). You can get a lot of Happy Shopper stuff in bulk for the price of big-name brands singly.

Of course, the fact that we have to even consider how best to give to food banks shows the evil of our present government.

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Pen-y-gors
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@AC

we've done this for years for Chrstmas cars

Wow, you're generous. Can I be your friend and put on your Christmas car list please? I quite fancy one of those new Hyundai Kona EVs if you can manage that.

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Pen-y-gors
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Re: A different name for every site?

Unless there was a daughter in there so you could get Glod Glodsondotterson.

I think the Icelanders actually spell it dóttir. But that wouldn't work because the name is made up from the father's or mother's first name + son / dóttir - so you could have Glod Glodsonsonson whose father was Glodsonson Glod, or you could have Glodetta Glodettadóttir but Glodetta Glodsondóttir tends to imply that Glodetta has had some very significant surgery.

I still think the President with the best name ever was Vigdís Finnbogadóttir in Iceland.

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Alexa heard what you did last summer – and she knows what that was, too: AI recognizes activities from sound

Pen-y-gors
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Boffins?

@ma1010

These people give mad boffins a bad name. Why can't they just concentrate on the good old hold-the-world-to-ransom-with-nuclear-weapons-in-a-volcano approach and leave our privacy out of it?

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Pen-y-gors
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Confusion?

But it could be fun trying to confuse Alexa.

Many moons ago a friend got a BBC sound effects tape and had fun with the message on his ansaphone - sounds of police sirens, helicopters and shooting in the background, to a gentle voice-over of "I'm afraid I can't get to the phone just at the moment, please leave a message"

Would Alexa call the plods if it heard shooting?

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Pen-y-gors
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But on the bright side...

at least it's not from Microsoft. Could you imagine this combined with Clippy?

<fx>sounds of regular bouncing bedsprings</fx>

Ping! It looks like you're trying to make a baby. Would you like some help?

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Cabinet Office: Forget about Verify – look at our 3,000 designers (and 56 meetups)

Pen-y-gors
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Any actual system architects?

...or security specialists? or systems designers (not just pretty UI)? or coders? or testers?

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Powerful forces, bodily fluids – it's all in a day's work

Pen-y-gors
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Re: Just the Usual...

@Crimperman1996

I never did find out what he did to get that much water onto his desk.

Are you certain it was actually plain H2O?

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Pen-y-gors
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Re: Just the Usual...

@GlebP

Reusing paper?

When I started my first IT job way back in the last century (1979) we had filed listings of all the operational programs printed on the good old continuous green-and-white lineflo paper.

I was somewhat baffled to discover that some of the pages had printing on the back as well. Seems the former assistant PHB had decided that to save paper the used listings should be fed back into the printer, after sellotaping the batches together to make a boxful.

A few years later I actually bumped into the guy at a Green Party conference. I just smiled.

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Pen-y-gors
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Re: Leaking barium enemas

<Madeline Kahn voice in Blazing Saddles> Oooh, it's twooo, it's twooooo!</fx>

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Samsung Galaxy A9: Mid-range bruiser that takes the fight to Huawei

Pen-y-gors
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Huawei v10 view

Been using one of these for a couple of months. Very similar spec, charges in 45 minus, very little in the way of unwanted system apps. £419. Probably cheaper by now. Samsung have a lot of work to do to compete at that price point.

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On the first day of Christmas my true love gave me tea... pigs-in-blankets-flavoured tea

Pen-y-gors
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Re: Tea

However I think we should all form an alliance and destroy the poncy so-and-so's who drink hot water with nothing in it.

I have a friend who drinks boiling water with milk in it!

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Pen-y-gors
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Re: Maybe they could get the fucking basics right, first ?

Eggs in boxes of 12 I can cope with, although nature intended them to come in sixes.

But which satanic marketing firm decided that 15 was an acceptable number of eggs in a box?

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Pen-y-gors
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Re: Sprouts

Agree about the bacon - even vegan food is better with bacon sprinkles.

And the sprout is God's anointed vegetable, closely followed by savoy cabbage. I understand that some people don't really rate broccoli, and most would agree that kale and turnips are for cattle, not humans. (N.B. Neeps with haggis of course aren't what the English call turnips, but are actually Swedish Turneeps, or swedes, which are lovely)

Of course the potato is in a category of its own.

And celery is Satan's favourite vegetable.

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Pen-y-gors
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Re: Tea

I think we need a campaign for real tea.

Just as the meat-growers are campaigning to ban calling anything 'milk' which doesn't come from a mammal's udders (so no Soya, almond, oat, rice milk etc) we should insist that only the leaves of the Camellia sinensis can be used to make tea. Preferably black tea, not this poncey green stuff. If you want other strange flavours call it a herbal tisanne.

It can only be drunk with milk (sugar optional) or, if you're European, lemon.

For real ethnic diversity yak butter would also be acceptable.

And don't get me started on flavoured coffees - the world does not need christmas pudding flavour coffee. And if you want almond-flavoured coffee just add a slug of Amaretto.

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Re: Crimble Free Zone?

It's reasonable to have a small selection of Festive Greetings cards on sale in late Nov, so that people can catch the cheap post for Australia. Advent calendars can go on sale at the same time (and should not include chocolates, gin miniatures or other treats behind each door). Then it's nothing until a week before Christmas, that's plenty of time to buy presents. And a total ban on Christmas music except in association with Christian religious observances.

And no New Year sales to start until Jan 1st.

But otherwise, I'm fine with the whole season.

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SpaceX touches down in California as Voyager 2 spies interstellar space

Pen-y-gors
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Re: Lack of Astonish!

I have no earthly idea why any (not-rich) person would buy a brand new car and pay the VAT and massive depreciation.

I think it depends on the car. Expensive flash things it doesn't make sense. My nearly-30-year-old Porsche 944 cost me £2500, and a few grand since then on maintenance.

But for the everyday car, it's often a good deal to buy a fairly basic thing (Skoda Fabia?) for new for maybe £10K (and the dealers offer some good cash deals!) and then drive it carefully for the next 10-15 years. Depreciation under £1K per year. Or buy a low-mileage one that's 4 years old for £6K, so again costing about £1K per year.

And buying from new you know who has sat in those seats!

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Pen-y-gors
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Re: Lack of Astonish!

Over 10 BEEELION miles from home, and still working. Now, if we can just build cars to have the same MTBF

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Pen-y-gors
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No more planets?

"frankly, there is little point in keeping cameras that were designed to look at planets activated when there are no more planets to look at."

But, but...there could be a Death Star lurking out there, just waiting for us to relax our vigilance!

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HMRC rapped as Brexit looms and customs IT release slips again

Pen-y-gors
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Re: TL;DR

@AC

Slightly fucked, regular fucked, extra fucked or proper fucked

All of the above?

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Pen-y-gors
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Don't panic!

But now the work is under increased pressure to meet the tighter deadline and to handle a surge in declarations – this could rise from 55 million to as much as 255 million after Brexit.

No, it won't rise like that. That figure assumes there will still be solvent businesses in the former UK wanting to import or export. Bar the drug smugglers and small-arms dealers (have to protect my stash of baked beans and long-life hummous).

So no need to rush guys.

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Blueprint of modern construction can be found in a tech cluster... of 19th century England

Pen-y-gors
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Re: Wow! Go Shrewsbury!

And if you like flowers, then in late July, at Wem (not too far away) they have their Sweet Pea show. A total sensory overload!

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Pen-y-gors
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Oh yes!

A few years ago I spend a couple of weeks in a cottage in Bishops Castle, in the courtyard of the Three Tuns Brewery, and about 20 yards from their pub. Ah, bliss! Several other excellent pubs in the town too, and the beer is absolutely marvellous.

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Wow!

I visit Shrewsbury from time to time, and will definitely try and visit.

When I moved into my cottage it had a couple of Coalbrookdale stoves - a Much Wenlock for hot water and radiators, and a Little Wenlock for heating the sitting room. Lovely. The fun bit was when I found an old invoice for when the mine offices next door were being built in the 1850s, and showed they bought a stove from Coalbrookdale as well. The invoice even notes how it was delivered - no Amazon prime! Railway to Rednal, then Canal to Newtown, then by cart to Machynlleth to be left at a slate quarry to be ollected for the last stage on another cart. (This was before the trains)

Shame they no longer exist!

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Google actually listens to users, hands back cookies and rethinks Chrome auto sign-in

Pen-y-gors
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Would there be a market...

for a random-background-surfing add-on for Chrome (and other browsers)? Something that quietly runs, visiting random webpages (SFW) and following links, patterned on human habits. That wouldn't stop the Google slurp, but it would bury your real connections in a smoke-screen of cruff.

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Pen-y-gors
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Re: Options

How many users have I been browsing the interwebs?

How is it I only discovered 'backspace' today?

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Pen-y-gors
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Re: Google still know everything about almost everyone, regardless of a switch.

@JohnFen

Out of curiosity, with all those blocks, what exactly do you use t'interwebs for? Pinging servers for fun?

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Couldn't give a fsck about patching? Well, that's your WordPress website pwned, then

Pen-y-gors
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No excuse really

I am not a fan of Wordpress, largely because of the security issues.

But it can be used in a way that is probably not noticeably less safe than most other systems.

1. Install a decent security plugin, and switch on all the options (I've been use All in One WP Security) - that will block a lot of nasty attack vectors, and also set things up for AUTOMATIC UPDATE of WP! Jesus! How difficult can it be!

2. DON'T install those tempting little plugins from god-knows-where. The ones that will turn out to have an interesting hole, 3 years after the sole developer died in a terrible tragedy involving cold soup, a rhododendron and stolen bitcoins.

3. Only use WP for fairly straightforward sites, ideally brochureware. If it's going to be running e-commerce, look elsewhere.

4. And if you're paranoid, look out for some really solid hosting. I run a number of shared hosting packages, but keep the WP sites on a separate package so any successful attacks can't access more important stuff.

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Never mind Brexit. UK must fling more £billions at nuke subs, say MPs

Pen-y-gors
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Dear Papua New Guinea

Please, please give us a free trade agreement on good terms or Port Moresby gets turned to glass.

Love n hugs

L Fox

You know, it might just work. Well, more likely than his other plans

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Pen-y-gors
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Scotland?

Of course, Scottish students don't pay any tuition fees if they study in Scotland.

Damn that evil SNP!

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Pen-y-gors
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Re: Simplistic solution to two problems

I see what you're thinking, but the way to low-carbon energy doesn't involve creating nuclear waste. Similar skills (good engineers) could be utilised to develop and manufacture tidal, wind and solar power. Scotland is already a world leader in research, and an excellent location for tidal. Let's make it a leader in actually making the things!

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Pen-y-gors
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Useful rule of thumb

When your SSD/HDD is getting full, you look for a few large, unwanted files to delete, rather than thousands of tiddly ones.

So, and I'm thinking out loud here, if we don't have a magic money tree and need to cut back, perhaps dropping a few large items of unnecessary expenditure could help to balance the books. As a start we could save £53 billion by dropping the WMDs, and god knows how much by dropping the National Plan for Economic Suicide. Oh yes, and no more magic bungs. More sensible than closing lots of public toilets and care homes.

Then we probably COULD spend £350m a week on the NHS. Curing people not killing them.

Oh yes, and of course, go for an independent England so there's no need to 'subsidise' Wales, Scotland and NI any more.

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Bouncing robots land on asteroid 180m miles away amid mission to fetch sample for Earth

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Wow!

Seriously impressive engineering. How come there is less coverage of this than similar (but less complicated) European and USian projects?

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Deliveroo to bike food to hungry fanbois queuing to buy iPhones

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@disgustedetc

I think the situation is different to your auntie (gawd bless 'er). A Cliff Richard 'gig' to use the modern parlance, has a strictly limited number of tickets available, and demand may well exceed supply, so queueing may be the only way to be sure of getting a ticket.

Apple phones are not in limited supply. Demand will not exceed supply, at least in the medium term. On the day, perhaps, but who cares about a day, or a week, or a month wait? I assume they have a working phone already, so it's not as if they are cut off from the world and society. It's just wanting to be one-up to queue on day 1. Wanting a new Apple gadget may be basically reasonable (or may not, we all have views on that) as is wanting to see Cliff Richard.

Queueing in the rain to spend sillty money just to show off is not a healthy thing. If they really like Apple just get a refurb 6+ for £250 and give the other grand to charity!

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London tipped to lead European data market. Yes, despite Brexit!

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Re: Where?

@Phuzz

While I suppose it's not incorrect to say that it is the capital of England, it's not an independent country any more than Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland are.

yet

I'm tempted to have a decent flutter at Paddy Power on whether England will be a sovereign, independent state again within ten years, for the first time in many centuries. Get rid of those blasted Celts! Viva la Revolutión Inglés! #indyengland.

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UK.gov isn't ready for no-deal Brexit – and 'secrecy' means businesses won't be either

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Re: Hmm

I'd vote for moving the UK population to move to Mars.

Good idea. We can build two large spaceships - the L Ark and the R Ark. The L Ark would leave first (as is their right) and never be heard from again. The R Ark would experience technical issues and have to cancel lift-off, with the colonists forced to Remain in a (much less crowded) UK.

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Re: Hmm

but having no plan to leave was brexiters fault

Errrm....it was their great idea. You mean they hadn't prepared a detailed plan for when their wish was granted? Who did they expect to do the donkey work?

Can we have a new referendum: Should the UK population move to Mars?

When we vote Yes we'll leave it to the government to work out the details. It'll be the easiest mass-migration in history.

[I am getting too cynical and sarcastic. But what else is left? Running wild in the House of Commons with a Combine Harvester just isn't my style.]

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Pen-y-gors
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Re: No shit, Sherlock?

@Len

You're going in the right direction. Killing people is wrong. And anyway, we'd have to pass a law to make killing MPs legal, and they're unlikely to do that.

But in terms of Cabinet members (and others - Farage)...

Treason Act 1351, as amended reads:

"or be adherent to the King’s Enemies in his Realm, giving to them Aid and Comfort in the Realm, or elsewhere, and thereof be [X4probably] attainted of open Deed by [X5the People] of their Condition"

1. Brexit will cause massive damage to the UK

2. Who would want that to happen?

3. Only enemies of the Queen and the UK. e.g. Putin - who welcomes Brexit and kills people in the UK. Sounds like an enemy to me.

4. So, by implementing Brexit, they are giving Aid and Comfort

5. The People can attest to that.

Which makes them guilty of High Treason, which no longer has the death penalty. But they can spend the rest of their days on Dartmoor, breaking rocks and picking oakum.

Can we crowdfund a prosecution?

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Pen-y-gors
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Re: Y2K all over again

nothing too serious will happen

True. People won't be able to fly, and the queues at Dover will start to grow.

After a few days in the queue things start to get nasty, as mobs of lorry drivers roam the Kent countryside looking for food and water.

After a couple of weeks the rotting food in the lorries has attracted rats, which breed rapidly. Bubonic plague sweeps southern England.

And after a month or two the insulin supply dries up. Theresa May is okay, as she gets private supplies imported by sea from the USA.

The last makes me wonder: would an insulin-dependent diabetic be likely to get off by claiming 'self defence' if the started slaughtering pro-Brexit MPs before the final vote?

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Pen-y-gors
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Re: Hmm

@John Brown

But it's quite evident that many who voted for Leave had other ideas, including a soft, negotiated exit.

I think many of them belonged to the "I still want to use the golf course even though I've resigned and no longer pay subs" tendency.

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Euro bureaucrats tie up .eu in red tape to stop Brexit Brits snatching back their web domains

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Re: Couldn't have said it better myself

Exactly. I voted Remain, and will continue to do so. The EU is an essential part of the future of the countries in the UK and the continent of Europe - and the world.

But I don't pretend it's perfect and infallible! This is just another example of the imperfections, which are best tackled from inside the organisation.

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UK.gov finally adds Galileo and Copernicus to the Brexit divorce bill

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Remind me...

There has been much discussion about the pros and cons of Brexit. In recent months there has been a growing list of very specific things that will definitely be worse, or no longer available, or cost more after we leave. The precise numbers may be open to debate, but the trend is very clear.

Remind me, what are the specific and definite benefits of leaving? And that doesn't include 'the possibility of a Free Trade Agreement with Vanuatu'.

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Re: TL;DR

@AC (There's a lot of AC comments here, wonder why?)

Just leave Scotland in the EU and put all trade through there

Ideally, Scotland, Wales and a united Ireland. (Latest Welsh polling shows strong Remain support now - the original referendum had a lot of stuff you Cameron behind the vote, and farmers who thought it would cut down on the paperwork! Which it will of course - no more payments, so no paperwork!)

Anyway, that wouldn't solve it. There would then be a hard border between the glorious kingdom of Little England and Wales/Scotland.

Face it, the vast majority of citizens of the disUK are going to get battered, unless they own a hedge-fund in Ireland or a German passport.

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Re: The punishment beating will continue

@Aladdin Sane

Strangely, now that I look at it, that troll icon does look remarkably like Drumpf! Just needs an orange makeover and it's perfect.

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Re: TL;DR

@Thought about IT

The level of ignorance about the effects of leaving the EU at the time of the last referendum - not least among the most extreme Brexiteers in the government - casts a long shadow over the proceedings.

The level of ignorance about the effects of leaving the EU at the time of the last referendum even now - not least among the most extreme Brexiteers in the government - casts a long shadow over the proceedings.

FTFY

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