* Posts by nick_rampart

158 posts • joined 21 Jul 2016

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Slapping crap bosses just got cheaper: Blighty's Supreme Court nixes tribunal fees

nick_rampart
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This sort of thing, well, it just leaves an unpleasant taste in the mouth for me. It hacks of the nasty party, making sure that only the wealthy have even the chance of justice. This may or may not actually be the case : but the perception is unpleasant. I also didn't like the legal aid cuts, which did I will confess, give me mixed feelings. Poor people having access to the courts vs. lawyers filling their pockets with tax payer's money.

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Take that, gender pay gap! Atos to offshore hundreds of BBC roles

nick_rampart
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Neither fish nor fowl

One of the many, many problems I have with the BBC. One day they are a British institution, 'auntie', Lord Reith, 'above' commercial considerations, impartial, the last bastion of imperial times in a capitalist world et al. The next day they are a greedy, money grabbing nasty shower of shite, who are only interested in commercial gain. They need to fucking make their mind up.

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Virgin Media's profanity warning triggered by chief exec's name

nick_rampart
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Back in more primitive times at the 'dawn of websites' I remember the people I worked for at the time being baffled why stuff from Scunthorpe always got rejected. I also remember something that mentioned 'spot welding' getting rejected. This really got us thinking. Eventually, we realised that the previous word ended in 'g' and the filter was being particularly prudish that day.

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Got some pom-poms handy? UK.gov seeks a geography cheerleader

nick_rampart
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Listening to a presentation at a university open day a couple of weeks ago, the guy doing the presenting (who was a historian, very very good presenter and a funny guy) was going through some of the extra stuff the applicants might be required to do. Science and Maths were some entrance tests, arts subjects were some essays. "If they want to do Geography, they'll probably get them to do some colouring in or something".

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Microsoft ctrl-Zs 'killing' Paint, by which we mean offering naff app through Windows Store

nick_rampart
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Cynical bastard makes comment

Come to our 'store' to download for free, what used to be included in the OS by default. And, look at all this other 'great stuff' you can buy while you are here......

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Cyber arm of UK spy agency left without PGP for four months

nick_rampart
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Yes Minister rules yet again.

“Internal processes were updated to ensure this issue does not recur,” said the report.

It's one of Sir Humphrey's 5 standard excuses that work in all circumstances!

"Even for wars?"

"Small wars, yes".

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Brits must now register virtually all new drones and undergo safety tests

nick_rampart
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Re: Chicken gun

'The fact that they can't fly, is besides the point, I suppose'

Ahaha you fell for the old 'chickens cant fly' story. One of the oldest urban legends on the internet. They fly, they fly good. A hidden camera has shown that my pet chicken, 'cupcake' often takes herself out for a quick soar round the block. Other so called 'flightless' birds also fly excellently, generally when they know people are not watching.

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nick_rampart
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“There is no time frame or firm plans as to how the new rules will be enforced”.

Sounds like the government are just 'kite flying' these ideas then.

(Do you see what I did there....)

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HMS Frigatey Mcfrigateface given her official name

nick_rampart
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Re: Cool 'warshipy' names

'naming rights'

Spectacular idea. Where to start? With naval tradition of course. 'HMS Bacardi', 'HMS Durex (extra strength)' and 'HMS Dominatrix'.

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nick_rampart
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Towns again....

Dreary. When there are really cool 'warshipy' names around. Looking forward to HMS Slough, HMS Stevenage, or perhaps HMS Westward Ho!

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Stop all news – it's time for us plebs to be told about BBC paycheques!

nick_rampart
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Re: And STILL incredible value for money

"I get the highest-quality dramas and news"

Pfff.... most of the time you get shit though don't you. If you like it, I'm really pleased for you, go ahead and enjoy. I don't really like it, or use it, and I'd like the choice not to pay for it, and for it to be cut off to me. But, if everyone didn't pay, then the service would be expensive for people like you. Far easier to make it a crime not to pay for Bargain Hunt repeats, endless cooking shows etc. so people who are fans of 'auntie' get subsidised by people who aren't.

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Nearly three-quarters of convicted TV Licence non-payers are women

nick_rampart
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Re: Its ok paying for something if you actually use it

"I shouldn't have to pay for it because I don't use it." "I don't use it" is an extremely feeble argument against any public spending priority.

Bang on. TV shouldn't be a public spending priority.You cant compare Bargain Hunt or the Great British Menu with things like health / education or indeed open spaces. It's something in 2020 that the government shouldn't be providing, cos private companies can provide it. People digging their heels in defending an early 20th century position where there was one state broadcaster is astonishing. Times have changed.

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Watchdog? Meh. How about real news? Granada told the bloke who created 'World in Action' to cause as much trouble for those at the top as he could. Jonathan Aitken went to jail thanks to World in Action. 'This Week' from Thames shook them as well with 'Death on the Rock'. I'm nostalgic for the good old days of ITV (back in the days it was a federation of franchised local broadcasters), but, the thought that only the BBC can do serious shit is wrong. Would the BBC have shown 'Death on the Rock'? Special mention to Weekend World, and World in Action though, for having the best title sequences with the best music. They dont make em like that anymore.

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nick_rampart
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Another thing....

While I'm here, BBC sport coverage is shite. My ask is this : take me into the stadium, and let me watch the sport. What I get these days is claire balding banging on and on, constant 'interviews', and even worse, 'atmospheric' VT clips, featuring that scottish bloke talking over them, spouting motivational shite, with lots of slow mo and close ups. Sport coverage is simple, and they over complicate it.

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nick_rampart
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Here's a 'what if' for you. What if I don't want to use the bbc, but am happy with ITV, perhaps I want a sky or BT subscription as well, perhaps I like football or something. Can someone please tell me why I should pay for the BBC if I don't want it? Is the answer that you want it, and you want me to help you pay for it? It is. Isn't it?

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nick_rampart
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The TV licence is very odd in the 21st century. If I were a sky subscriber and I stopped paying, they'd cut off my service. If you are a BBC subscriber and you stop paying, you eventually go to prison. I'm just not getting the difference......

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5G is not just a radio: Welcome to the fibre-tastic new mobile world

nick_rampart
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Apologies to Barry Crier

T-OVEN : Isn't that where people from Yorkshire bake cakes?

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Russia launches non-TERRIFYING satellite that focuses Sun's solar rays onto Earth

nick_rampart
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Re: Tracking info freely available

I'm not in any way affiliated with the site you mention (heavens above), but can I just say it rocks, and has done for years. Simple, informative, keeping the pissing around at a minimum, the way a website should be. Can I also recommend their android app please. Allows you to add reminders in your calendar when you see something worth taking a look at. I currently have an Iridium flare, and a Mayak pass to take a look at over the next couple of nights, if the weather isn't too shit.

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Another Brexit cliff edge: UK.gov warned over data flows to EU

nick_rampart
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I'm guessing that unless things change pretty quick, the brexit negotiations generally are going to be a complete clusterfuck. The election has taken away any mandate they may have had to negotiate, and they know it. The current lot are in office, but seemingly not in power. Best outcome from my viewpoint : we have a 'technical' brexit where we 'leave the EU', but remain in as many of the institutions of the EU as they'll let us. Hopefully then the leavers would have technically left (and can fondly remember the Empire as they sit in their chairs watching Countdown), but the remainers technically remain too, at least in most of the ways that actually matter. The blessed discourse would then continue pretty much as it has for the last 40 years, and we can then look back on this as a total waste of time and money, and ensure that David Cameron takes his rightful place in history : as a total knob end.

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UK.gov snaps on rubber gloves, prepares for mandatory porn checks

nick_rampart
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Re: Lucky parliament have got so much time on their hands

They are basically too busy circling the fresh corpse of the maybot at the mo to worry about running the country. With the exception of a few horse shit token pieces of legislation, they are pretending they are back in roman times, 'et tu Boris' etc. Fact of the matter is, that they fucking love it at times like these. The smug bastard who's the chair of the 1922 pretending he's the kingmaker, cabinet ministers briefing against each other, back benchers betting their careers on picking the right person to fellate. Tories, back doing what they do best. Infighting.

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nick_rampart
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"All this means that while we can enjoy the freedom of the web..."

lol.

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Radiohead hides ZX Spectrum proggie in OK Computer re-release

nick_rampart
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Re: C90 cassette, as that medium was the dominant way? No!

'C90 was only dominant for LPs'

It was also the dominant format for people who copied games from their mates, and enjoyed / endured the 'will it wont it' tightrope of loading games. The hours I spent waiting for Daley Thompson's Supertest 128 to load, just to get to the very end then crash.....

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What can you do with adult VR, some bronze gears and a robotic thumb? On a Friday?

nick_rampart
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"the Antikythera mechanism is the world's oldest computer for which physical remains exist"

Shit, I thought I had that record with a Dragon 32 that's in my loft. Somewhere.

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UK spookhaus GCHQ can crack end-to-end encryption, claims Australian A-G

nick_rampart
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To continue your Python reference, Is every Australian's user name 'Bruce'? If not, it might cause a little confusion.....

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All your bass are belong to us: Soundcloud fans raid site for music amid fears of total collapse

nick_rampart
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Re: Other people's money

Astounding. I have some magic beans. Anyone willing to invest? I have a path to profitability for them : it involves a very special goose and a giant.

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Slower US F-35A purchases piles $27bn onto total fighter jet bill

nick_rampart
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Re: How many hospitals is that ?

How about how many footballers? Manchester Utd could have bought an F-35 instead of Lukaku. It would have more pace, but perhaps would be injured more.

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Mappy days! Ordnance Survey offers up free map of UK greenery

nick_rampart
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Re: The OS used to have a monopoly

For old farts like me who spent geography lessons trying to fold them back up right, OS maps rock. Example, eldest daughter likes triathalon, still just a beginner though. Planned herself a nice route. I took a quick look on Bing's OS maps thingy, pointed out that part of her route had quite a steep hill. Whatever mapping software she'd used didn't mention this, but with your OS map it was all too clear. Being a cocky little git, she didn't take a bit of notice of the old fart. She had a near death experience on the hill I'd warned her about, and I was pleased.

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Russia, China vow to kill off VPNs, Tor browser

nick_rampart
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Re: The cause of the next world war

Not seeing any kind of revolution just yet. 4 missed meals, and we are underway. Things are too comfy in the west, even for the very poor. Beer, ciggies, ready meals and Match of the Day, and we are happy.

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NASA flies plane through Earthly shadow of Kuiper Belt object

nick_rampart
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Re: I'm lost

Magic indeed. Little off topic, but at a uni open day last week, the daughter had a sample physics lecture, which I sat in on. She was okay, but is real geeky, I didn't get a lot of it. Special Relativity. For me, most amazing stuff mentioned were the calculations done by James Bradley in the early 1700's around light aberration, which helped him work out the speed of light, among other things. At least the chaps at NASA have a few decent 'puters to help them do stuff like mentioned in the story. Back then, Bradley probably only had a 286. Anyhoo, astonishing stuff from NASA, which makes me wish I had an interesting job.

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Former GCHQ boss backs end-to-end encryption

nick_rampart
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Re: Hand up who thinks Amber Rudd will listen...

She very nearly was forced to listen to the good people of Hastings : a couple of hundred votes shy of having her arse handed to her on a plate. Humiliating for a holder of one of the great offices of state. Amazed she has the brass neck to carry on spouting shite. When the current 'propped up by fundamentalists' mess collapses, she's outta here....

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nick_rampart
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Encryption is overwhelmingly a good thing," Hannigan said. "It keeps us all safe and secure. Throughout the Cold War and up until 15 years ago it was something only governments could do at scale."

It's this that they (politicos) hate. They've been accustomed to a populous that they can spy on. Now they cant, and they don't like it. They, via their agencies, used to have the power to eaves drop at will. Now, normal people who can install software or download an app have the power to stop them. Nothing will scare them more than losing their powers over us.

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Sailor Moon? More like sail to the Moon: Japan vows to set foot on lunar soil by 2030

nick_rampart
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JAXA

Japan Aerospace eXploration Agency. It'd have been too tempting for me to have swapped the 'Agency' for 'Institute', had I been on the naming committee....

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Five-eyes nations want comms providers to bust crypto for them

nick_rampart
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“deal with the relentless threats of terrorism, violent extremism, cyber-attacks, and international instability, while retaining our deep commitment to the shared values of democracy, human rights and the rule of law”.

Horse shit. They are faced with a general populous that they are unable to spy on, and they don't like it. The above is almost too argumentum ad metum for words. Only surprise is they didn't mention noncing too. Make the plebs afraid, they will then let you get away with anything.

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O Rly? O'Reilly exits direct book sales

nick_rampart
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Re: Probably inevitable...

After a reorganization at home thanks to Mrs Rampart, I had to cull a shed load of computing books (charity shop, I feel books are sacred and they are never knowingly destroyed by me). But I couldn't bring myself to get rid of the 3 o'reilly perl books. Despite hardly ever using perl anymore. I'm an unemotional guy too, as the aforementioned and lucky Mrs Rampart would testify. Superb books.

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Astroboffins dig into the weird backwards orbit of the Bee-Zed asteroid

nick_rampart
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Joke

"Their icy exteriors are warmed by the Sun and they sublime"

That's ridiculous.

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Fancy buying our aircraft carrier satnav, Raytheon asks UK

nick_rampart
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Re: Himself? Herself?

Dave : My beef with the names for the carriers is that there are some fabulous traditional aircraft carrier names out there that should have been used. Instead they went for sycophancy. And dont even start me on crossrail, the olympic park etc.....

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nick_rampart
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Re: Himself? Herself?

'he' and not a 'she'?

I can just stomach ships being referred to as 'she', due to the centuries of naval tradition (along with rum and sodomy etc.). But I hate it when people refer to non gendered objects as 'he' or 'she'. My former brother in law referred to his Vauxhall Cavalier as 'she'. And he, was a twat.

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nick_rampart
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Re: Himself? Herself?

"name the second carrier HMS Ark Royal"

Correct Sir. And the first one should have been called Hermes.

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2 kool 4 komputing: Teens' interest in GCSE course totally bombs

nick_rampart
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I know that I can get a team of 4 brilliant developers from the Philippines for the cost of 1 contractor from the UK. I also know that I dont need to be in the same room, building or country as they are for them to work well. They are happy to work UK or US hours, not a problem. If one or more of them don't work out, there are a smorgasbord of others to chose from. Programming could go the same way as steel making or coal mining in the UK : other places can do it cheaper, you'd need a stunningly good reason to do it locally.

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nick_rampart
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Precisely what my daughter did. She got an A* in GCSE computing, then at A Level did Maths, Further Maths, Chemistry and Physics. Why? Even if she wanted to do a Degree in a computing based subject, Computing A-Levels are not required, merely 'useful'. More general, 'academic' A Levels increase your choice of degree options, and are more impressive to the better universities. And, I can concur with the article : teaching ability in secondary school computing courses is very patchy. Only good one encountered was a techie who'd been in industry for years, then swapped to be a teacher as a lifestyle choice. The rest were totally clueless. One of them was a 'career' PE teacher for christ's sake.....

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RSA SecurID admin console can issue emergency access to decent social engineers

nick_rampart
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Re: Information

I know someone (not me, of course) who's mothers maiden name is Stingwing, and their first pet was called 'cnutbutler'. Their birthday is (where possible) unix epoch day, and their favourite holiday destination is Leeds. Point being, make it up people.

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Europe-wide BitTorrent indexer blockade looms after Pirate Bay blow

nick_rampart
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Home taping is killing music

It did kill music. Didn't it?

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Swedish school pumps up volume to ease toilet trauma

nick_rampart
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One or two edits to one of Van Halen's most famous songs would be suitably encouraging and optimistic. 'Might as well dump...DUMP!....Go ahead and dump'

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DUP site crashes after UK general election

nick_rampart
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She has condemned herself to a living nightmare. Relying on completely mental whipping of her MPs, and the Orange order. The *orange order* ffs. The 1922, the press, even the jam making WI members of the grass roots will all be after her blood. Last time there was a proper hung parliament, 2 elections in a year. I think she'll struggle on to spring 2018. But after that, she'll be out of her misery, and I sense a Labour landslide.

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Cabinet Office minister Gummer loses seat as Tory gamble backfires

nick_rampart
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Re: None of them would have if it was a two round system

The next time, whenever it comes (could be any day now) will be even more interesting in my view. UKIP are basically deceased now, so their support cannot prop up the conservatives as they have done in some seats this time. Liberals show no sign of life really. Let's say the tories stumble on, supported by their 10 orange superhero friends for 2 years, humiliating themselves in the brexit negotiations as they go, being defeated frequently in the commons, squabbling as only tories can do, and May looking more and more of a prat the whole time. You could be looking at a 1997 size labour majority in 2019, with JC as PM. Exciting, if slightly unnerving times.

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nick_rampart
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Re: the best we could have hoped for.

"Instead, I just treated myself to a second cup of tea."

You hell-raiser you. I nearly wet myself laughing at the exit poll at 10. Cos even if the poll was wrong and she'd crept in with the same size majority as she has now, she'd still have catastrophically failed. She wanted 50 - 100 majority, so she could rule us like a queen. Now, not only does she have the foibles of the 1922 committee to worry about, she has Ken Clarke and a couple of others who are staunch remainers, and the northern irish fundamentalists to keep happy. They are not going to prop her up free of charge. If she misjudged this so badly, who could argue she's actually fit to govern? She theoretically has her finger on the button for fucks sake. Total disaster for her, and hilariously funny for the rest of us.

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nick_rampart
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Re: Well look on the bright side

Theresa is going to look stunning in the orange sash and bowler hat. Cos that's part of the 'agreement'. Talk about selling your soul to the homophobic, pro-life, fundamentalist devil.....

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Axed from IBM for remote working? Don't go crying to HPE

nick_rampart
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Re: Giving flexibility gets flexibility

One upvote is not enough sir. You are a steely eyed missile man, and no mistake.

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British prime minister slams Facebook and pals for votes

nick_rampart
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Re: If

AC, it's a shame you are an AC, cos you make a quite valid point. A lot of the middle east unpleasantness is thanks to Sir Mark Sykes and M. Picot. They assumed (correctly as it turned out) that the faltering ottoman empire would not last, and drew some fairly random lines on a map deciding on 'spheres of influence', leading to some fairly daffy succession states after the empire fell, together with lots of broken promises. Which never goes down well anywhere, but at the risk of generalization, particularly so with people in that part of the world. Since then pretty much, endless hassle.

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Don't rely on fitness trackers to track number of calories burned

nick_rampart
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Re: "Don't rely on fitness trackers to track number of calories burned"

I like my fitbit. Do I think it's accurate? Of course not. I'd need to be towing around a laboratory for it to accurately do the stuff it claims to do (which would probably increase my calorific output). But, if I want something that gives me a general idea of how active I've been in a day or week, why not have a fitbit / other similar stuff. I like it, it works for me. Just cos you don't agree I don't think it necessarily makes me gullible. But thanks for patronising me on this beautiful Friday, it's appreciated.

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