Friday, 31 December 2010

Happy New Year everybody

Happy New Year everybody.

I hope 2011 is a better year than we fear it will be and that at the end of it we are happier and healthier.

Mark Steel shows his class

Mark Steel showing his class by mocking both the age related illness of Lady Thatcher and Ariel Sharon's medical predicament.

CIF Watch has more details but here's a comment I made a while back:
'Mark Steele is a regular BBC commentator on Radio 5 Live where his political affiliations have never been mentioned (so far as I am aware), despite his being invited to discuss politics on a semi-regular basis. Simone Clarke was denigrated by the media for being a supporter of the BNP a party whose views many would find no more repugnant than those of the SWP." '

So there we go, Mark steel showing why the BBC love him so...

Toys for Tots

'During a December 10, 2010 appearance on Roe & Roeper's Miracle on Indianapolis Blvd. Holiday Extravaganza broadcast, live from The Venue inside the Horseshoe Casino, which benefitted the USO, GEICO's R. Lee Ermey appearing on behalf of Toys 4 Tots took an opportunity to unload on President Obama, claiming his administration was destroying the country so that it could impose socialism.'

'Democrats are beginning to organize to purposely vote for Palin in the 2012 Republican primaries'

"In what could be the most extreme and influential crowdsourcing project ever, Democrats are beginning to organize to purposely vote for Palin in the 2012 Republican primaries. Their theory is by having Palin as an opponent, Obama will have the best odds at winning reelection. Recent polls have shown that Obama comfortably leads Palin by 10-20 points, but Obama is statistically tied with Romney and barely ahead of Huckabee. They even have a state-by-state primary voting guide to help Democrats navigate various states' rules for voting Palin in Republican primaries."
Slashdot has the details

Predictions for 2010 - reality check

I made two sets of predictions at the end of 2009, so how did I do?

This set was split into three sections (actual outcome in italics):
'Five political predictions for 2010:
1. Gordon Brown will continue to try and create spurious and contrived dividing lines with the Conservatives, the BBC will assist by pushing the dividing lines - Yes but was a no-brainer
2. The election will be held on May 6 (along with the local elections) because Labour cannot afford to run two campaigns and this way they will maximise their vote in the council elections - It was
3. The pre-election leader's debates will produce a surprise win (in the view of opinion polls) for Gordon Brown - Thankfully I was wrong
4. The pre-election leader's debates will produce an increase in support for the Lib Dems - A big yes
5. Labour win the general election, postal votes being a key factor, and the protests about vote-rigging are dismissed as "losers' sour grapes" - I am sure there was vote-rigging but not enough to keep Labour in power, maybe enough to keep the Conservatives from an overall majority though

Five economic predictions for 2010:
1. With a Labour victory at the general election (see above) the UK's credit rating will drop from AAA and the resultant rise in interest rates will produce the second half of the 'W shaped' recession - Interest rate rise looks like being in early 2011 not late 2010 and I see a second dip in GDP
2. The re-election of a Labour government will mean that the exodus of bankers and other financial institutions to more financially friendly locations - No Labour victory but the state of the UK economy and the move to higher taxation could still mean this happening in 2011
3. The ever larger hole in the Treasury's tax receipts will mean that the higher rate of income tax rises to 60% and VAT to 20% - Right on VAT if not Income Tax, yet
4. The Pound will reach parity with the Euro and the price for IMF and EU assistance for the "sick man of Europe" will be joining the Euro. Being at parity will make this an easier sell for Gordon Brown and Peter Mandelson - The Euro countries weakened before the UK, to a large degree because Labour did not win the election
5. Having dropped to around USD 1,100 at the end of 2009; gold will rise ever higher, reaching USD 1500 by the end of the 2010 - Closed New Years Eve at around $1,410 - not quite and I am surprised

Five BBC related predictions for 2010:
1. The BBC will become ever more blatantly biased in favour of the Labour party, the Conservatives won't realise how serious a problem this is - Right and right
2. The tone of the BBC's leader's debate will be clearly pro-Labour, the Conservatives won't realise how serious a problem this is - Right and right
3. The BBC will minimise their coverage of the postal voting scandal (see above), the Conservatives will finally realise how serious this BBC bias is but it will be too late - Right
4. The BBC will continue to push for the withdrawal of British armed forces from Afghanistan - Right
5. The BBC will continue to vilify Israel at every opportunity and revel in the coming further military attacks on Israel - Right'

I make that 3/5 on politics, 0.5/5 on economics (with an extra point just delayed) and 5/5 on the BBC.

I also made 10 Miscellaneous predictions how did I fare?

1. An Islamic jihadist attack will succeed and hundreds will die but still 'the West' will not acknowledge the reality of the threat - No single attack was that large but cumulatively much larger
2. Iran will test a nuclear device and the UN will still pretend that they pose no threat to Israel or anyone else - Not quite, but will do soon
3. The Man Made Climate Change religion will increase its hold on the western world's politics and the 'warmists' will make holding 'deniers' views even more difficult - Interesting; whilst the 'warmist' hold on power and opinion has tightened, a larger proportion of the public seem to be realising that all is not as they are being told
4. Microsoft will release Office 2010 to replace Office 2007 but most businesses will still stick with Office 2003 - Obviously
5. Nigel Farage will beat John Bercow to take his Buckingham seat - Unfortunately not
6. Matt Smith's portrayal of The Doctor will not match up to David Tennant's - Still open to debate but I think Matt Smith has been a very good Doctor so far
7. The Big Brother team will engineer a 'controversy' for the final series, I won't care - Did they, I didn't pay it any attention?
8. England will not win the World Cup - Easy point
9. Andy Murray will not win the Wimbledon title - Another easy point
10. NotaSheep will continue to blog - Despite a wobble or two, I have done so

I make that 5 correct and 1 sort of, so 6/10 - that's an A* now isn't it?

Predictions for 2011 to follow...

One of the oddest stories of 2010 - An Australian Islamic story

Creeping Sharia has the story:
'The burka and the race-card as Islamist weapons. Update and video courtesy of Vladtepes, Burqa-clad mum Carnita Matthews jailed for six months

A BURQA-CLAD mother of seven who claimed she was the victim of mistaken identity has been jailed for six months for making a false complaint against a police officer.

Magistrate Robert Rabbidge dismissed Carnita Matthews’ allegations that a highway patrol officer was racist after he pulled her over for a Random Breath Test and claims he forcibly tried to remove her face veil as false.

In sentencing her, he described her actions as “both deliberate and malicious” saying he had no option but to sentence her to jail given the seriousness of her allegations, and to send a clear message to the community.

A second woman, also wearing a burqa today who was supporting Matthews in court broke down in tears as she was removed by Corrective Service officers.

Matthews was charged in June after allegedly falsely claiming that a highway patrol officer handled her in an attempt to see her burqa-hidden face during a random breath test.

Little did she know it was all caught on tape:'

Suddenly Kate Middleton just got interesting

The Telegraph reports that:
'A friend of Kate Middleton was interviewed under caution for claiming on Facebook that she planned to shoot illegal immigrants.'
But it was the background on Kate Middleton's friend, Emma Sayle, that caught my eye:
'Miss Sayle, from Wandsworth, south-west London, is no stranger to notoriety - she runs an "upmarket" swingers' club through her company, Killing Kittens, and describes herself as "one of the world's leading sextrepreneurs". The firm also sells sexual aids and organises a 'kidnap role play experience' for £3,500.

On The Sisterhood website she lists her hobbies as "breaking squash rackets on walls, playing dirty in triathlons and "practicing [sic] her front crawl naked in the Serpentine after a night out". '
Killing Kittens describes itself as 'The network for the world's sexual elite.' Is/was Kate Middleton a member? How about any members of the Royal Family?

Meanwhile I note that many of the broadsheets have run articles on Killing Kittens in the past. So here's The Times' Charlotte Hunt-Grubbe
'I’d been approached by friends giggling into drinks, or confiding in me over supper, four times. All these girls are public-school products: intelligent, beautiful, high-flying. Girls I thought would dismiss out of hand the concept of going to a club to, as far as I could grasp, dress up, titillate and have sex with numerous men and women. Nonetheless, a month later I’m in a silky pink dress and a sparkling eye mask, surrounded by women in a towering Mayfair mansion ticking my name off the guest list on a table strewn with condoms and — bizarrely — Quality Street chocolates.'
Here's The Independent's Charlotte Philby:
'By the time I return to the main upstairs salon – in which a huge pile of adjoining mattresses, overlooked by a floor-to-ceiling mirror, is placed tellingly in the middle of the room – the walls are lined with couples and huddles of women, all looking on eagerly as some 20 bodies (male and female) get to it. There are threesomes, foursomes and indecipherable groupings in the throes of various intimate acts, some having full-blown sex, either oblivious to or spurred on by their audience. Sometimes it's hard to tell where one group stops and the next begins. More and more of those on the sidelines begin to slide into the pile, without any obvious invitation, and no one seems willing to turn down anyone who wants to get involved. (It's hard to tell how widely condoms are being used, but I did notice a basket of them by the front door.)

As I make my escape, I catch a conversation by the ground-floor stairway: a naked woman, recently returned from the bedroom, addresses an apprehensive-looking friend: "Why don't you just come upstairs?" she asks her reassuringly. "If you feel like getting involved, that's great, but if you don't, that's cool too." The pair join hands and move towards the stairs. '

That name 'Killing Kittens' comes from the jokey phrase 'Fact: Every Time You Masturbate, God Kills a Kitten. How Many More Have to Die?'.

England's ridiculous 'sprinker celebration'

Footballers' goal celebrations are bad enough but when cricketers decide to choreograph their celebrations... well it's 'just not cricket'!

Debt is the problem

'Western governments' reliance on debt now is extraordinary.
The G7 countries have, on average, 50 percent more debt in 2010 than in 2007. This is an average figure: the below, using IMF data, charts how much debt they have taken on. No prizes for guessing which country raises the average:

You can read more, much more, in Fraser Nelson's piece for The Spectator and in Johan Norberg's piece entitled 'The great debt bubble of 2011' - vert scary stuff!

The Four Questions Every Liberal Must Be Asked

American Thinker has the questions:
' 1. What is total spending of the federal budget?
2. What is the federal deficit?
3. What is the national debt?
4. What was the most recent interest payment on the national debt?'
And the answers, take a read... Maybe try this out on any US 'liberals'!

Of course very similar questions could be asked of the many supporters of the Labour Party, Trade Unionists and BBC commentators who denounce the 'savage cuts' with no understanding of why they are necessary. Maybe I should put together the equivalent figures for the UK, unles someone has them to hand...?

Thursday, 30 December 2010

The efficiency of Wind Farms - per Richard Littlejohn

Richard Littlejohn in The Mail takes Wind Farms to task, using much that I and others have been pointing out for some time now.

'In percentage terms, how much electricity do Britain’s 3,150 wind ­turbines supply to the ­National Grid?

Is it: a) five per cent; b) ten per cent; or c) 20 per cent? Come on, I’m going to have to hurry you. No conferring.

Time’s up. The correct answer is: none of the above. Yesterday afternoon, the figure was just 1.6 per cent, according to the official website of the wholesale electricity market.

Over the past three weeks, with demand for power at record levels because of the freezing weather, there have been days when the contribution of our forests of wind turbines has been precisely nothing.

It gets better. As the temperature has plummeted, the turbines have had to be heated to prevent them seizing up. Consequently, they have been consuming more electricity than they generate.

Even on a good day they rarely work above a quarter of their theoretical capacity. And in high winds they have to be switched off altogether to prevent damage.

At best, the combined output of these monstrosities is equal only to that of a single, medium-sized, gas-fired power station.'
Read the rest of Richard Littlejohn's article, read my recent postings regarding Wind Farms (you could start with this one and this one), dig around the Internet and find out the truth about the efficiency of Wind Farms and then spread the news...

Protecting the liberal shibboleths

Take a read of Wikipedia's article on the Community Reinvestment Act and ask yourself if the section headed 'Controversies and criticisms' seems fair and balanced or somewhat skewed towards defending the controversial Act?

How much of the petrol pump price is tax and how much is actually petrol?

'The average price for a litre of unleaded petrol on British forecourts is 123.26p. Of this, 57.19p is fuel tax, 18.36p is VAT, while the actual cost of the fuel is only 47.71p.'

Thanks to Saxon Times for reminding me of this fact.

The one hundred and twelfth weekly "No shit, Sherlock" award

This week's award goes to Angela Merkel, as reported in Reuters for stating the obvious regarding the sentencing of former Russian oil tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky to six additional years in prison on charges of multi-billion dollar theft and money-laundering meaning that he will serve a total of 14 years in prison and not be freed until 2017.

"The impression remains that political motivations played a role in this trial...This contradicts Russia's frequently repeated intention to pursue full adoption of the rule of law."
"No shit, Sherlock"

The cuddly face of the UK left

The Guardian's Comment Is Free have a piece entitled
'Why Michael Heseltine has returned
City-loving, leftie-bashing Michael Heseltine is just the man Cameron needs in the critical year ahead'
And the first comment posted is:
'VoxAC30 29 December 2010 9:05PM
Oh God, isn't he dead yet?'
And yet the Tories are the 'nasty party'!

That EU Diary

Further to this post , Jon Worth via Twitter sent me a link to the 'diary'. Oddly I cannot download the diary itself just the verbiage that goes with it, which is what makes The Europa Diary  a fascinating read, full of tip-top EU propaganda and environmental right-on'isms, here's two examples (my comments in italics):

'The benefits of the euro aren’t limited to increased convenience for tourists. Euro area countries now have lower inflation and interest rates, greater stability, increased investment and trade, as well as increased price transparency and competition. This benefits everyone'.
'greater (economic) stability'?

'The UK will receive over €10.6 billion in regional support from the European Union between 2 007 and 2 013.'
But how much will the UK pay into the EU in that same period? Isn't it around £90 billion a year?

Read the whole 'Diary' and then note that:
'How much?'
Free!… We just ask for your feedback in return.

'Published by whom?
The Wise Choices? Europa Diary is published by the European Commission, has been developed in cooperation with Generation Europe Foundation and is distributed in the UK with the help of IAT and GEF UK.'

I would still like sight of the diary pages that are devoid of Christian festivals but not Muslim and others. I have asked for the file... we will see if I get sent one.

'If Christians were treated like Muslims in America'

Human Events wonders what would happen 'If Christians were treated like Muslims in America'; take a read.

'Incontrovertible corroborative evidence that the EU is a God-less, Marxist, secular, religiously and politically-correct, totalitarian, omnipotent beast quite antithetical to Christians, Christianity and the message of Christ'

Archbishop Cranmer has discovered that:
'the European Commission really have produced a new religiously-correct daily planner (aimed, naturally, at school children) in which it really is always winter but never Christmas.

Or always Diwali, Hanukkah and Eid but never Christmas, to be precise.

His Grace is loath to exaggerate or distort this story in any way, lest it be classified as just another Euromyth.

These daily planners, of which three million have produced (courtesy of the taxpayer), include the holidays of Jews, Muslims, Sikhs and Hindus, but there is not one mention of Christian holidays.

Despite Christians manifestly constituting the vast majority of the European Union.

You might expect them to omit Ascension Sunday, Lent and the Feast Day of the Blessed John Henry Cardinal Newman.

But Christmas and Easter?

The page for December 25th is completely empty, and at the bottom is the following message:
"A true friend is someone who shares your worries and your joy.”
That’s nice.'
Archbishop Cranmer concludes that:
'To omit one Christian festival may be regarded as an error; to omit two looks like carelessness.

But to omit all of them looks like conspiracy.

Or at least incontrovertible corroborative evidence that the EU is a God-less, Marxist, secular, religiously and politically-correct, totalitarian, omnipotent beast quite antithetical to Christians, Christianity and the message of Christ.'

"Oh those Russians" - Bobby Farrell, front man of the Boney M, has died at the age of 61 in St Petersburg

"Oh those Russians" - Bobby Farrell, front man of the Boney M, has died at the age of 61 in St Petersburg. That quote was a 'Rasputin' reference.

Yes I know Bobby Farrell did not sing on the tracks, just danced, but what a strong image and what a dancer! Very cool, in fact - 'Daddy Cool'

Weirdly I note that Rasputin, himself, died on 29 December; just 1 day (and 94 years) different from Bobby Farrell.

Does having your nipples pierced hurt?

The answer would seem to be yes it does!

Some worrying other videos link to this one including of Vertical Clitoral Hood (VCH) Piercings that seem not to hurt that much!

Festive season rubbish collection - How much overtime?

Ealing Council had refuse collections as normal on Christmas Day! What did that cost?

The one hundred and eleventh weekly "No shit, Sherlock" award

This week's award goes to Colorado State University for the staggering conclusion, as reported by Red State that:
'University Study Confirms Renewable Energy Isn’t Economically Feasible'

Renewable energy not economically feasible? "No shit, Sherlock"

Football sharpshooter

Se Busca?
Is this for real, that is some incredible shooting accuracy. Puts the supporters on Soccer AM to shame; come on Helen Chamberlain get this lad on the show.

Thanks to Theo Spark for the spot.

Does Wind Power work?

Sites such as The Renewable Energy Centre tell us that:
'The UK has more usable wind power than any other European country and large scale wind turbine farms on and offshore will become a major supplier of electricity to the national grid in the next twenty years.

As at 28 June 2009 there are 217 UK grid-connected wind farms containing 2,537 wind turbines with the capacity to generate 3628 MW.*'
The BBC always gives us the maximum capacity of every wind-farm with its promise of free, clean electricity.

Wikipedia states that:
'As of 1 December 2010, there were 282 operational wind farms in the UK, with 3,149 turbines and 5,194 MW of installed capacity. A further 2,283 MW worth of schemes are currently under construction, while another 6,245 MW have planning consent and some 9,328 MW are in planning awaiting approval.
Wikipedia do admit near the end of their article that:
'Because the level at which a wind farm operates is determined by the wind speed at any particular time, capacity factor bears limited relation to the hours it operates. In comparison, thermal power stations must run at or near their full capacities at all times in order to achieve maximum efficiency. This makes them ill-suited to act as a supplement to wind power. An additional problem is that when winds are outside the optimal range for wind turbines (5 to 25 m/s), they cannot generate any power. If this happens during a winter cold snap, when electrical demand reaches its highest levels of the year, conventional power sources must have the capacity of meeting that entire demand. [75] [76]
In 2007, UK wind farms achieved "load factors on an unchanged configuration basis" of 27.3% for onshore and 28.3% for offshore respectively. In 2008 onshore farms achieved 29.4% and offshore farms achieved 34.9% on the same basis.[77] A study by the Renewable Energy Foundation (REF), which campaigns against the use of wind energy in the UK, claimed that only a few Scottish wind farms achieved the 28% average, while turbines in lowland England were operating at much lower levels, some at less than 10% of capacity.[78]'

Note those 27.3% and 28.3% figures because today I note that NETA reports that wind farms are producing not 3,628MW or more than 5GW or even 27.3% of 5GW but forecast today of 373MW and tomorrow of 46MW. Why are we spending so much money on a power generating source that is so inefficient? By way of comparison the The coal-fired Ratcliffe-on-Soar Power Station in the UK has a rated capacity of 2 GW and will run at or near that generating capacity for long periods of time; not just when the wind blows.

If you want more information as to the actual electricity generation by Wind Farms than I recommend a perusal of The Renewable Energy Foundation's figures.

Man Made Climate Change and IPCC postings

No Frakking Consensus is a blogger that I have not come across before but if his 'Best of 2010' posting is anything to go by I may have to become a regular reader. The five posts that Donna Laframboise lists are all worth a read.

'#5 – Independent bloggers vs corporate environmentalists
30 years ago Greenpeace rented creaky fishing boats. These days it purchases $22-million custom-built mega-yachts. The shoestring voices in the environmental debate now belong to skeptical bloggers.
#4 – The Stern Review scandal – the IPCC breaks 3 of its own rules
Ten months after the official cutoff date, and well after the expert reviewers were out of the picture, climate bible authors inserted references to the Stern Review into 12 different chapters.
#3 – Politicians dressed in lab coats
When a forensic pathologist testifies at a murder trial he describes bruises, lacerations, and bullet holes. He does not decide whether the accused is guilty. Nor does he opine to the media about how such murders might be prevented. So why do climate scientists think it’s their business to prescribe solutions – rather than telling us about their data and only about their data?
#2 – An even younger senior author
If climate change is the biggest challenge facing humanity, why have kids filled senior IPCC roles for the past 15 years?
#1 – Extinction fiction (PDF version here; original posts: Part 1, Part 2)
The claim by the IPCC that 20-30% of all Earth’s species are at risk of extinction relies on a research paper that has been demolished by experts in the field. It is highly debatable whether the authors of that chapter of the 2007 IPCC report comprise the ‘worlds top experts’. What is not in dispute is that five out of 10 of the lead authors have documented links to the World Wildlife Fund. So do three of the chapter’s contributing authors.'

Lauren Booth declared bankrupt

I see that the loathsome Lauren Booth has been declared bankrupt. Am I alone in thinking this is aposite bearing in mind the bankrupt nature of her views on Israel?

Wednesday, 29 December 2010

"You're adorable, you're reliable but is your anus pliable?" - NSFW but fun

[x] adorable

[x] reliable

[?] ass bandit

More from Vancouver's The Wet Spots, if you would like to hear tracks such as "Fist Me This Christmas" and "Labia Limbo".

He's not my 'prophet'

The BBC are at it again, every news report about the 'five suspected Islamist militants' being 'arrested for planning a gun attack at the Copenhagen offices of a Danish newspaper' refers to that newspaper as having 'printed cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad in 2005'.

'The prophet Muhammad', really? He's not my prophet, or the prophet of the majority of the people in the world thus surely 'the Islamic prophet Muhammad' would be accurate. Have you ever heard the BBC refer to Jesus Christ as 'the Messiah Jesus Christ'? Why the dhimmitude?

George Ought to Help

An interesting video I found on Rantin Rab's blog.

Why do the Met Office get their forecasts so wrong?

I have explained before why this might be the case, adherence to dogma outweighing science, but here is Christopher Booker. Do read the whole article but here's an extract:
'The reason why the Met Office gets its forecasts so hopelessly wrong is that they are based on those same computer models on which the IPCC itself relies to predict the world’s climate in 100 years time. They are programmed on the assumption that, as CO2 rises, so temperatures must inexorably follow. For 17 years this seemed plausible, because the world did appear to be getting warmer. We all became familiar with those warmer winters and earlier springs, which the warmists were quick to exploit to promote their message – as when Dr David Viner of the CRU famously predicted to The Independent in 2000 that “within a few years winter snowfall will be a very rare and exciting event”. (Last week, that article from 10 years ago was the most viewed item on The Independent’s website.)

But in 2007, the computer models got caught out, failing to predict a temporary plunge in global temperatures of 0.7C, more than the net warming of the 20th century. Much of the northern hemisphere suffered what was called in North America “the winter from hell”. Even though temperatures did rise again, in the winter of 2008/9 this happened again, only worse.

The Met Office simply went into denial. Its senior climate change official, Peter Stott, said in March 2009 that the trend towards milder winters was likely to continue. There would not be another winter like 1962/3 “for 1,000 years or more”. Last winter was colder still. And now we have another even more savage “random event”, for which we are even less prepared. (The Taxpayers’ Alliance revealed last week that councils have actually ordered less salt this winter than last.)

The consequences of all this are profound. Those who rule over our lives have been carried off into a cloud-cuckoo-land for which no one was more responsible than the zealots at the Met Office, subordinating all it does to their dotty belief system. Significantly, its chairman, Robert Napier, is not a weatherman but a “climate activist”, previously head of WWF-UK, one of our leading warmist campaigning groups.'

Face to face with evil

Syria's President Bashar Assad warmly shakes the hand of met with Samir Kuntar, a man whose contribution to peace in the Middle East was murdering a father in front of his 4-year-daughter and then fatally smashing her skull with a rifle butt. Samir Kuntar was released from an Israeli jail in 2008 as part of a prisoner exchange and it would seem that he has been welcomed back into the Islamic fold.

Here's an extract from Smadar Haran Kaiser's recollections of the murderous attack:
'It had been a peaceful Sabbath day. My husband, Danny, and I had picnicked with our little girls, Einat, 4, and Yael, 2, on the beach not far from our home in Nahariya, a city on the northern coast of Israel, about six miles south of the Lebanese border. Around midnight, we were asleep in our apartment when four terrorists, sent by Abu Abbas from Lebanon, landed in a rubber boat on the beach two blocks away. Gunfire and exploding grenades awakened us as the terrorists burst into our building. They had already killed a police officer. As they charged up to the floor above ours, I opened the door to our apartment. In the moment before the hall light went off, they turned and saw me. As they moved on, our neighbor from the upper floor came running down the stairs. I grabbed her and pushed her inside our apartment and slammed the door.

Outside, we could hear the men storming about. Desperately, we sought to hide. Danny helped our neighbor climb into a crawl space above our bedroom; I went in behind her with Yael in my arms. Then Danny grabbed Einat and was dashing out the front door to take refuge in an underground shelter when the terrorists came crashing into our flat. They held Danny and Einat while they searched for me and Yael, knowing there were more people in the apartment. I will never forget the joy and the hatred in their voices as they swaggered about hunting for us, firing their guns and throwing grenades. I knew that if Yael cried out, the terrorists would toss a grenade into the crawl space and we would be killed. So I kept my hand over her mouth, hoping she could breathe. As I lay there, I remembered my mother telling me how she had hidden from the Nazis during the Holocaust. "This is just like what happened to my mother," I thought. As police began to arrive, the terrorists took Danny and Einat down to the beach. There, according to eyewitnesses, one of them shot Danny in front of Einat so that his death would be the last sight she would ever see. Then he smashed my little girl's skull in against a rock with his rifle butt.
That terrorist was Samir Kuntar.

By the time we were rescued from the crawl space, hours later, Yael, too, was dead. In trying to save all our lives, I had smothered her.'
They say that you can judge a man by his choice of friends, if so how should we judge Syria's President Assad?

Thanks to Israelly Cool for the spot.

The effects of Global Warming

Twice over the Christmas period I have heard expressed the view that Global Warming means weather extremes such as the severe cold snaps experienced in the UK over the last few years. It is incredible how the true believers will believe whatever the 'warmists' tell them is the truth. I however have a memory and the ability to research. I have posted before that:
'The Independent told us all in 2000, in an article by Charles Onians that ''snow is starting to disappear from our lives' and that 'Children just aren't going to know what snow is'. Really? How many days have been lost to 'unprecedented' smow-fall over the last three winters? Any children who don't know what snow is? Of course not, The Independent's article in 2000 just repeated the claims of the 'warmists' for whom a day is not complete if they cannot scare people about the results of global warming.'
But here is a link to a 1999 Science Daily article which explains that:
'The research, which appears in the June 3 issue of the British journal Nature, offers no predictions on what temperatures future winters will bring, but suggests a continuation of the current trend for three to four more decades.

If warming trends continue, said Drew Shindell, associate research scientist at Columbia's Center for Climate Systems Research and lead author of the report, northern regions of Europe and Asia and, to a lesser extent, North America, can expect winters that are both warmer and wetter, with increased rain and snow.'
'Winters that are both warmer and better' - really? I believe that this December will be the coldest for over a hundred years and the whole winter period my well follow suit. What will it tale for the 'warmists' to admit that they were wrong about Global Warming/Man Made Climate Change?

More Archers speculation

The Mail has more on the speculation about The Archers New Year storyline that 'will shake Ambridge to the core'.

'So when is a forecast not a forecast? When the Met Office gets it wrong, it seems. '

Autonomous Mind has caught the Met Office out:
'Dave Britton, the Met Office’s Chief Press Officer, e-mailed the following statement to the Global Warming Policy Foundation (GWPF):

'Following the entry on your blog regarding the Met Office please find the Met Office response below:

The Met Office has not issued a seasonal forecast to the public and categorically denies forecasting a ‘mild winter’ as suggested by Boris Johnson in his column in the Daily Telegraph.

Following public research, the Met Office no longer issues long-range forecasts for the general public; instead we provide a monthly outlook on our website, which have consistent and clearly sign-posted the very cold conditions.
(Continues on the GWPF website).'

This is all very interesting. Either the Met Office’s left hand doesn’t know what it’s right hand is doing, the Met Office has no idea what is being said by its employees, or the Met Office is playing semantics in a very disingenuous manner. Why? This bit of information issued by the Met Office in October…
'The latest data comes in the form of a December to February temperature map on the Met Office’s website.

The eastern half of England, Cornwall, Scotland and Northern Ireland is in for temperatures above the 3.7C (38.6F) average, more than 2C warmer than last winter.

The map also shows a 40 per cent to 60 per cent probability that western England and Wales will be warmer than 3.7C (38.6F), with a much smaller chance of average or below-average temperatures.'
Read the rest of the Autonomous Mind article and see if you agree that:
'So when is a forecast not a forecast? When the Met Office gets it wrong, it seems. Let’s see how they spin this. But for now the words ‘bang to rights’ spring to mind.'

Awfully still isn't it?

As another day dawns in the south of the UK with no discernible wind, I thought that I would take a look at NETA's statistics and see that wind farms are producing negligible levels of power.
Currently Wind Power is accounting for 0.4% of generated power, although it reaches the heady heights of 0.8% for the last 24 hours. Coal, gas and nuclear power stations work and their power generation is controllable. Wind power's power generation depends upon nature and that means no production on cold days when power demand for heating is high and often over-supply on breezy summer nights when power demand is relatively low.

The UK's countryside is being despoiled to satisfy political ambitions and so as to further the warmist agenda. Please can we have some sense about this matter in the future.

Tuesday, 28 December 2010

This blog and Felicity Kendal

This blog has long been a resource for people looking to see video or stills of Felicity Kendal's nipples (well one anyway). However the number of Felicity Kendal related visits today has increased hugely; the reason - this blog is now at number 10 for people searching purely for 'Felicity Kendal'. Is this the big time?

Archers speculation

The BBC have decided in their 'wisdom' to warn people that the 2 January epsiode of The Archers will contain two shocks one of which will shock Ambridge to its core. Speculation is obviously rife, here are my ideas:
1) Will and Ed finally bury the hatchet, in each other
2) Helen and Ian finally get it on, Adam discovers them and runs amok in the village with the combine-harvester
3) Linda Snell gets a bad review in the Echo for the village panto and wreaks her revenge by getting Robert to disable the Borsetshire traffic lights causing multiple pile-ups

What ideas do you have?

"Failed science based on fraudulent data"

Piers Corbyn interviewed on Fox News, you will have to wait a long time to see Piers Corbyn interviewed on the BBC...

For more on Piers Corbyn, visit his Weather Action website or follow him on Twitter piers_corbyn.

Thanks to Theo Spark for the video spot.

Shhh the BBC don't want us to know everything

Whilst other major news outlets have as one of their lead stories the alleged list of targets of the Xhristmas Day bombers, I cannot find a note about this story on the BBC. So whilst the Telegraph reports that:
'Nine alleged terrorists plotted a Christmas bombing campaign targeting sites that included the London Stock Exchange and Big Ben, a court heard.

They are alleged to have carried out reconnaissance missions before deciding on their possible targets.

Police were said to have found a list of six sites, including the full postal address of the Stock Exchange, Boris Johnson’s London mayoral office and the US embassy.

Defendants were seen studying the tower of Big Ben, before inspecting Westminster Abbey, the London Eye and the Church of Scientology.

Al-Qaeda inspired books and leaflets, including instructions on making a pipe bomb, were also uncovered during the counter-terrorism operation.

Details of the alleged plot were outlined at City of Westminster magistrates’ court.


Among the details were the addresses of the Dean of St Paul’s Chapter House and of two rabbis at separate synagogues. '
Islamists planning to Kill Jews; shhh they are the Religion of Peace.

Mind you one part of the Telegraph report does sound rather like any number of sightseeing trips in London:
'A reconnaissance trip is alleged to have been made from Trafalgar Square, down Whitehall to Westminster Bridge where Big Ben was studied intently.

A mobile phone had appeared to be raised and pointed towards the clock tower, the court heard.

Westminster Abbey, the Palace of Westminster and the London Eye were also closely examined before the Church of Scientology near Blackfriars was allegedly observed intently for some minutes.

The journey ended with a meal in a McDonald’s fast food restaurant, the court heard. '

Monday, 27 December 2010

"Nothing will stop me. Not the government of what they call Israel; not the government of Canada or the U.S.,"

"Nothing will stop me. Not the government of what they call Israel; not the government of Canada or the U.S.,
Allegedly the words of George Galloway; for context take a read of Creeping Sharia.

Daily Mail fail

The Mail reports that:
'The model is on holiday in the West Indies island, staying at the infamous Hotel de France with her long-time boyfriend and property figure, Maurice Dabbah.'
Daily Mail fail - as far as I am aware there is no Hotel de France on St Barths. I suppose Victoria Silvstedt may be staying at the Hotel Saint Barth Isle de France on the island of St Barths. And why 'infamous'; maybe the drinks prices?

What a difference a day makes

Yesterday the BBC were deleriously reporting that five of the gentlemen arrested on suspiscion of conspiring to cause explosions were released without charge. The BBC's tone was one of of course they were released, Islamic terrorism is a myth. The BBC sem less happy to report today that:
'Nine men have been charged with conspiracy to cause explosions in the UK and with preparing for terrorism, West Midlands Police have said.

The men are aged between 19 and 28 and three are from Cardiff, two from east London and four from Stoke-on-Trent. '
So what links the nine men, the BBC seem unable or unwilling to speculate beyond listing their names:
'The men charged from Cardiff are Gurukanth Desai, 28, of Albert Street; Omar Sharif Latif, 26, of Neville Street, and Abdul Malik Miah, 24, of Ninian Park Road.

Those charged from London are Mohammed Moksudur Rahman Chowdhury, 20, of Stanliff House, Tower Hamlets, and Shah Mohammed Lutfar Rahman, 28, of St Bernard's Road, Newham.

The four charged from Stoke-on-Trent are Nazam Hussain, 25, of Grove Street; Usman Khan, 19, of Persia Walk; Mohibur Rahman, 26, of North Road, and Abul Bosher Mohammed Shahjahan, 26, of Burmarsh Walk.'
I make that eight Muslims; maybe the BBC will concentrate on reporting that Gurukanth Desai has been charged as he has a Sikh or maybe Hindu name.

Is it synchronicity that one of the men, Usman Khan, lives in a road named Persia Walk?

Were you unprepared for the snow?

Then has a suggestion!

Sunday, 26 December 2010

The good - United States, United Kingdom, Germany, Italy, Sweden, Canada, Netherlands, Australia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Israel, Latvia, Lithuania, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Palau, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, and The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia.

The good - Australia, Bulgaria, Canada, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Germany, Israel, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Marshall Islands, Micronesia (Federated States of), Netherlands, Palau, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Sweden, The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, United Kingdom, United States.

The cowardly - Albania, Andorra, Armenia, Austria, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Cyprus, Finland, France, Georgia, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Japan, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Malta, Monaco, Montenegro, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, Republic of Korea, Republic of Moldova, Samoa, Serbia, Slovenia, Spain, Switzerland, Tonga, Ukraine.

The mad, bad, evil, misinformed or maybe or bullied - Afghanistan, Algeria, Argentina, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belarus, Belize, Benin, Bhutan, Bolivia, Botswana, Brazil, Brunei Darussalam, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cambodia, Cameroon, Chile, China, Colombia, Congo, Costa Rica, Côte d’Ivoire, Cuba, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Djibouti, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Fiji, Gabon, Ghana, Grenada, Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Jamaica, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kuwait, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Lebanon, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Madagascar, Malawi, Malaysia, Maldives, Mali, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mexico, Mongolia, Morocco, Myanmar, Namibia, Nepal, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, Oman, Pakistan, Panama, Peru, Philippines, Qatar, Russian Federation, Rwanda, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Singapore, Solomon Islands, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Swaziland, Syria, Thailand, Timor-Leste, Togo, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Tuvalu, Uganda, United Arab Emirates, United Republic of Tanzania, Uruguay, Venezuela, Viet Nam, Yemen, Zambia, Zimbabwe.

UN Watch have the details relating to the United Nations' Durban Declaration and Programme of Action aka Durban 3 vote.

'the Met Office remains so ideologically wedded to Man Made Global Warming that it refuses to be dissuaded even in the face of three consecutive severe winters which, by its own calculations, ought to have been almost impossible (8,000 to 1 against)'

James Delingpole in The Telegraph is not happy with 'warmist' scientists:
'Always remember this: the Warmist faith so fervently held and promulgated by the Met Office is exactly the same faith so passionately, unswervingly followed by David Cameron, Chris Huhne, Greg Barker, the Coalition’s energy spokesman in the Lords Lord Marland, and all but five members of the last parliament. And also by the BBC, the Prince of Wales, almost every national newspaper, the European Union, the Royal Society, the New York Times, CNBC, the Obama administration, the Australian and New Zealand governments, your children’s schools, our major universities, our minor universities, the University of East Anglia, your local council….'
facts are unimportant to these people; power, taxation, belief and control are...

Saturday, 25 December 2010

What has more effect on the Earth's temperature: Man or the Sun? Something to get your teeth into on Christmas Day

The 'warmists' would have us believe that it is man who is to blame but somehow I think that 870,000 mile diameter luminous ball of plasma at the centre just 93 million miles away may just have a larger influence. It seems that I am not alone...

NASA write:
'What are the primary forcings of the Earth system?

The Sun is the primary forcing of Earth’s climate system. Sunlight warms our world. Sunlight drives atmospheric and oceanic circulation patterns. Sunlight powers the process of photosynthesis that plants need to grow. Sunlight causes convection which carries warmth and water vapor up into the sky where clouds form and bring rain. In short, the Sun drives almost every aspect of our world’s climate system and makes possible life as we know it.

Earth’s orbit around and orientation toward the Sun change over spans of many thousands of years. In turn, these changing “orbital mechanics” force climate to change because they change where and how much sunlight reaches Earth. Thus, changing Earth’s exposure to sunlight forces climate to change. According to scientists’ models of Earth’s orbit and orientation toward the Sun indicate that our world should be just beginning to enter a new period of cooling — perhaps the next ice age.

However, a new force for change has arisen: humans. After the industrial revolution, humans introduced increasing amounts of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, and changed the surface of the landscape to an extent great enough to influence climate on local and global scales. By driving up carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere (by about 30 percent), humans have increased its capacity to trap warmth near the surface.

Other important forcings of Earth’s climate system include such “variables” as clouds, airborne particulate matter, and surface brightness. Each of these varying features of Earth’s environment has the capacity to exceed the warming influence of greenhouse gases and cause our world to cool. For example, increased cloudiness would give more shade to the surface while reflecting more sunlight back to space. Increased airborne particles (or “aerosols”) would scatter and reflect more sunlight back to space, thereby cooling the surface. Major volcanic eruptions (such as that of Mt. Pinatubo in 1992) can inject so much aerosol into the atmosphere that, as it spreads around the globe, it reduces sunlight and cause Earth to cool. Likewise, increasing the surface area of highly reflective surface types, such as ice sheets, reflects greater amounts of sunlight back to space and causes Earth to cool.

Scientists are using NASA satellites to monitor all of the aforementioned forcings of Earth’s climate system to better understand how they are changing over time, and how any changes in them affect climate.'

Meanwhile Boris Johnson in The Telegraph sings the praises of a climatologist who has managed to predict the UK's weather rather more accurately than the Met Office and on a much smaller budget. His secret?
'He studies the Sun.

He looks at the flow of particles from the Sun, and how they interact with the upper atmosphere, especially air currents such as the jet stream, and he looks at how the Moon and other factors influence those streaming particles.

He takes a snapshot of what the Sun is doing at any given moment, and then he looks back at the record to see when it last did something similar. Then he checks what the weather was like on Earth at the time – and he makes a prophecy. '

Piers Corbyn, for that is the scientist's name also
'believes that the last three winters could be the harbinger of a mini ice age that could be upon us by 2035, and that it could start to be colder than at any time in the last 200 years. He goes on to speculate that a genuine ice age might then settle in, since an ice age is now cyclically overdue.'

Boris is still a believer in the 'warmist' agenda but he does allow himself to wonder:
'The question is whether anthropogenic global warming is the exclusive or dominant fact that determines our climate, or whether Corbyn is also right to insist on the role of the Sun. Is it possible that everything we do is dwarfed by the moods of the star that gives life to the world? The Sun is incomparably vaster and more powerful than any work of man. We are forged from a few clods of solar dust. The Sun powers every plant and form of life, and one day the Sun will turn into a red giant and engulf us all. Then it will burn out. Then it will get very nippy indeed.'

Finally Climate Realists report some interesting and frankly scary analysis:
'“The big freeze of 2010 is part of a much broader climate change phenomenon,” he (author and climatologist Gavin Cooke) explains. Most alarmingly it appears to be following a similar pattern to the most recent seriously cold spell when the River Thames froze over in the 1700s.

The so-called Little Ice Age, which lasted about 70 years and was the coldest period in 1,500 years, was significant because it enabled astronomers to discover an unexpected connection between Earth’s climate and the action of the sun. “We get all our energy from the sun and it dictates our climate but the role of the sun is traditionally overlooked by meteorologists. The scary thing is that sunspot activity has a direct correlation to climate. When the sun is producing a lot of sunspots [cooler patches] – normally in a year there are 30,000 to 40,000 of these – the temperature on Earth is traditionally warmer.”

In 1645 there were no sunspots whatsoever, five years or so later the Little Ice Age began and lasted for seven decades.

“The scary thing is that NASA scientists discovered there were no sunspots in 2008,” says Cooke. “Now, as predicted, Northern Europe is once again entering a period of exceptionally cold winters.”

And 2010 is apparently just the beginning. According to Mike Lockwood, professor of space environment physics at the University of Reading, we can expect the cold weather to peak between 2025 to 2040. The problem for us is the impact that low solar activity has on the jet stream, the current of air that blasts across the Atlantic carrying all our warm weather with it.

“Britain lies just outside the Arctic Circle and on the same latitude as Labrador. If it wasn’t for the jet stream and to a lesser extent the gulf stream – the warming of ocean water – our winter weather would be similar to that the Eskimos experience every year,” says Cooke.

In simple terms sunspot activity keeps the jet stream going. Take them away and the warm air won’t reach us during the winter months. Instead freezing air from Siberia in the North rushes in to fill the vacuum. '

So there's a huge nuclear fusion reactor at the centre of our solar system that represents 99% of the mass in the solar system. It's gravity is so strong that we all revolve about it and it heats the solar system and beyond. How anyone could believe it has an influence on our climate is a mystery ...

Israel & The Palestinians - What the Western Media misses

FrumForum report the words of Israeli Arab journalist Khaled Abu Toameh and a fascinating read they are. Here's an extract:
'I asked Toameh how, as an Arab Muslim Israeli, he responds to accusations that Israel is an apartheid state.

His response:
"Israel is not an apartheid state. But there are problems and some discrimination with the Arab minority inside Israel. If Israel were an apartheid state, I, for example, would not be allowed to work for a Jewish newspaper or live in a Jewish neighborhood or own a home. The real apartheid is in Lebanon, where there is a law that bans Palestinians from working in over 50 professions. Can you imagine if the Knesset passed a law banning Arabs from working even in one profession? The real apartheid is also in many Arab and Muslim nations, like Kuwait, where my Palestinian uncle, who has been living there for 35 years is banned from buying a house. The law of Israel does not distinguish between a Jew and an Arab."

But what about the media’s need for an anti-Israeli angle on stories? Toameh says that when he tried to alert many of his foreign colleagues that Palestinians were dying because of an internal power struggle or gross corruption by Arafat and the Palestinian Authority, their reflex response was:
"Where’s the anti-Israel angle to the story? Give us an anti-occupation story. Make our lives much easier. An Arab killing an Arab, that’s not a story for us."

Focusing on the problem from Arab dictatorships and their insistence on inciting their people against Israel, Toameh says that we have a problem in the West in failing to believe what people tell us.
"If Hamas say they want to destroy you, you have no reason not to believe them. And if Ahmadinejad says he wants to destroy you, there’s no need to start analysing what he means by that. Stop fooling ourselves and if anyone thinks that Hamas will ever recognise Israel’s right to exist, you’re also living in an illusion. Take it from their mouth directly…the PLO however is different – they will tell you one thing in English and then another in Arabic."
Do read the whole article...

Planning the deaths of 'infidels'

The Telegraph reports that:
'Three Islamist fanatics plotted to attack one of the country's largest army bases and kill as many people as possible in what would have been the worst terror attack on Australian soil.

The radicalised Muslim men were yesterday found guilty of planning the brazen attack on Holsworthy Army Base, a training area and artillery range on the outskirts of Sydney that can host up to 2,000 soldiers at a time.

Wissam Mahmoud Fattal, 34, Saney Edow Aweys, 27, and Nayef El Sayed, 26 – all Australian citizens of Somali or Lebanese origin – plotted to walk into the base with high-powered weapons and shoot scores of soldiers until they had either used up their ammunition or had been killed or captured.

The men, who were also accused of having ties to al-Shabab, the powerful al-Qaeda-linked Somali terror group, wanted to carry out the suicide attack in revenge for Australia's role in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The audacious plot was uncovered last year after one of the biggest police operations in Australian history. The ten month-long operation involved 400 officers and hours of phone tapping.

More than 2000 conversations were played to the jury during the three-month trial. In the discussions the men expressed their support for Islamic fighters and said they would be willing to become a martyr to advance the cause of Islam.


The group's contempt for Australia was laid bare in the trial.

Prosecutors said Aweys had described Australians as "infidels" and said that the 2009 Black Saturday bush fires, which killed 173 people, were punishment from Allah.

In one encounter with an undercover officer, Fattall had said: "If I find way to kill the army, I swear to Allah the great I'm going to do it."'
As I keep saying; these people make no secret of the fact that they hate us and want us dead. They make no secret of why they believe this and justify it, so why do so many in the West try and make excuses?

Airport Security in San Francisco

The hole in security that exists around ground staff is one that has worried me for quite some time and one day I fear that we will all have to take more notice of this matter.

Friday, 24 December 2010

Baby it's cold outside - For Christmas Eve

Rod Stewart & Dolly Parton duet

Tom Jones & Cerys Matthews duet

One Ronnie & a fruity technology related gag

Ronnie Corbett and Harry Enfield in a new One Ronnie sketch that appealed to me on many levels; techie, funny and reminded me of Saturday nights in the 1970s.

The Cancun accord

I disagree with Bolivia's reasons for not signing the Cancun accord but am intrigued by the way the agreement was approved:
'The "Cancún accord" was presented late Friday afternoon, and we were given two hours to read it. Despite pressure to sign something – anything – immediately, Bolivia requested further deliberations. This text, we said, would be a sad conclusion to the negotiations. After we were denied any opportunity to discuss the text, despite a lack of consensus, the president banged her gavel to approve the document.'

More here.

Tracking Santa

Norad are tracking Santa, currently 'Santa's next stop is: P’yongyang, North Korea' which is nice and topical!

'a scientific theory that implies predictions that turn out to be wrong, is false'

Powerline Blog explains why and it is Global Warming Climate Change Disruption related.

Complaining to the BBC and their partial replies (part 2)

Further to my complaints about the bias in the way the BBC reports isolated comments made by extremist Israelis and the far more common often genocidal comments made by Palestinian secular and religious leaders, I have received another reply from the BBC which I think raises some very interesting questions and one absolutely fascinating question which I have raised in my reply:
'Dear Sir or madam,

Thank you for your further comments on

I explained in my first email why we felt it editorially justified to report the story as we did. You appear to agree that it was reasonable to report Rabbi Ovadia Yosef’s comments as we did.

I also felt that I answered your question, but I will try again.

Hamas, the Palestinian Authority and other Palestinian groups and organisations speak with several voices. At different times and to different audiences they say different things. Sometimes their comments are might be seen as “conciliatory”, sometimes very warlike. There are Hamas leaders, for example, who regularly call for violent Jihad to reclaim all of “Palestine”. Others have indicated that they are ready to accept (maybe live with for the foreseeable future) a truce with Israel and a Palestinian state along the 1967 borders. Hamas’ true position is somewhere in between and the argument within the movement is an important one. To report the shrill and extreme statements of some of the Hamas firebrands is therefore misleading.

So, to answer your question, no we have not reported Ziyad Abu al-Haj's comments, nor other comments by of Dr Ahmed Yousuf Abu Halabiah. But we do feel that across our coverage and in our background features we reflect accurately, fairly and in detail and the position of Hamas on the key issues.

Bets regards,

Tarik Kafala
Middle East editor
BBC News website '

Here is my reply:
'Dear Tarik,

Thank you for your reply which I find interesting, if incomplete.

I have responded to your points in turn as that is the most convenient way for me, however I have also highlighted the key question that I have posed so as to try and ensure that you do not miss answering it when you reply to all of my points.

I do indeed consider it reasonable to report Rabbi Ovaida's comments as I always said I did; my complaint is that the BBC seem unwilling to report the hate-speech often expressed by Hamas and Fatah's religious and secular leaders.

I accept that 'Hamas, the Palestinian Authority and other Palestinian groups and organisations speak with several voices' and that what they say often depends on the audience to whom they are speaking. You mention that there are 'Hamas leaders, for example, who regularly call for violent Jihad to reclaim all of “Palestine”' and I presume that you can show me coverage on the BBC of such leaders' sentiments. However can you also show me where the BBC have reported sentiments such as those I presented to you that not only should all of Palestine be reclaimed but that Palestinians are enjoined to "Kill the Jews and those among the Americans who are like them… Have no mercy on the Jews, murder them everywhere."?

You say that 'Others have indicated that they are ready to accept (maybe live with for the foreseeable future) a truce with Israel and a Palestinian state along the 1967 borders.' and I accept that some Fatah and other Palestinians have taken this line in discussions with the West, I am less certain that any Hamas leaders have, maybe you could tell me who?

You go on to state that 'Hamas’ true position is somewhere in between', how do you know this? How do you know that Hamas's position is somewhere in between the two extremes? Is it not possible that their true position is as in their Charter and statements made for home consumption and not anything to do with their statements made for the benefit of a gullible West? Do you know the meaning of the word taqiyya in this context?

If one person says that Sir Isaac Newton is dead and one says that Sir Isaac Newton is dead, is it necessarily the truth that Sir Isaac Newton is neither dead nor alive? Or is it the case that one person is telling the truth and one lying? Is it the BBC's position that the truth always lies between two sets of opinions?

You say that 'To report the shrill and extreme statements of some of the Hamas firebrands is therefore misleading. ' Yet the BBC were happy to report the extreme statements of one firebrand Israeli Rabbi. Why is it 'misleading' to report the words of 'Hamas firebrands' but not those of an Israeli firebrand? Do the BBC consider that Rabbi Ovaida's statements are isolated sentiments or representative of those of much of Israel? Does the BBC apply different standards to the speeches of Israeli and Palestinian 'firebrands'?

You conclude that 'So, to answer your question, no we have not reported Ziyad Abu al-Haj's comments, nor other comments by of Dr Ahmed Yousuf Abu Halabiah. But we do feel that across our coverage and in our background features we reflect accurately, fairly and in detail and the position of Hamas

I would appreciate your response to my above questions as I consider there still to be areas that need addressing regarding BBC bias in this matter.

Kind regards

NotaSheep '

I wonder if I will get a reply from Tarik Kafala and is so how he will deal with my point that asked Why is it 'misleading' to report the words of 'Hamas firebrands' but not those of an Israeli firebrand?; time may tell...

Complaining to the BBC and their partial replies (part 1)

I have received two replies to my complaints about bias in the way that the BBC eagerly report the comments of extremist Israelis whilst minimising coberage of genoicidal Hamas and Fatah leaders.

Here is the reply I received on 16 November from the BBC, apologies for the late posting of it and my late response but I missed the email arriving:

'On 16 November 2010 14:32, NewsOnline Complaints wrote:
Dear Notasheep,
Thank you for your further comments.
I tried to explain in my first email why we felt it editorial justified to report Rabbi Ovadia Yosef’s comments because of his importance and their timing.

We have, of course, reported the actions, policies and statements of Hamas and other Palestinian leaders. We tend, where possible to conduct our own interviews with such figures. 

The answer to one of your specific questions, based on a search of the site, is no. We did not report the statement by Ahmed Yassin regarding reconciliation with Israel being a crime or that Israel. In our obituary of Yassin we say: It was there that he formed the belief that Palestine was an Islamic land "consecrated for future Muslim generations until Judgement Day", and that no Arab leader had the right to give up any part of this territory.

Our current profile of Hamas makes it absolutely clear that Hamas' charter calls for the destruction of Israel, though its leaders often talk about a long tern truce following the withdrawal of Israel from occupied territory. This, I would argue, covers the substance of Yassin's comments and points to some range or nuance ion Hamas' position. 
The BBC News website was launched in 1997, so it's not possible for me to check whether we reported the Yasser Arafat comment that you refer to.

Best regards,

Tarik Kafala, Middle East editor, BBC News website

Here is my response:

'Thank you for your reply and I apologise for not replying sooner but I managed to miss your email arriving.

I note that you have looked into the BBC's reporting of Ahmed Yassin's comments and assure me that you reported in his obituary that 'It was there that he formed the belief that Palestine was an Islamic land "consecrated for future Muslim generations until Judgement Day", and that no Arab leader had the right to give up any part of this territory.' I think that is rather milder than the statements that I asked if the BBC had ever reported. It seems that the BBC is eager to  report the wilder comments of a relatively minor Israeli Rabbi but connives in hiding the true feelings and objectives of many Hamas and Fatah religious and secular leaders. Look at what the BBC wrote in the obituary and ask yourself if that comes close to truly representing the words that I quoted? 

I ask again, did the BBC web news report Hamas cleric Ziyad Abu al-Haj's Friday sermon of 3 April 2009 in which he said "The time will come, by Allah’s will, when their property will be destroyed and their children will be exterminated, and no Jew or Zionist will be left on the face of this earth."?

Maybe you could also show me where BBC web news reported the words of Dr. Ahmed Yousuf Abu Halabiah, a member of the Palestinian Sharia (Islamic religious law) Rulings Council, and Rector of Advanced Studies at the Islamic University on 13 October 2000 when he said "The Jews are the Jews. There never was among them a supporter of peace. They are all liars… They are terrorists. Therefore it is necessary to slaughter them and murder them, according to the words of Allah… It is forbidden to have mercy in your hearts for the Jews in any place and in any land. Make war on them any place that you find yourself. Any place that you meet them – kill them. Kill the Jews and those among the Americans who are like them… The Jews only understand might. Have no mercy on the Jews, murder them everywhere."

You go on to say that 'Our current profile of Hamas makes it absolutely clear that Hamas' charter calls for the destruction of Israel, though its leaders often talk about a long tern truce following the withdrawal of Israel from occupied territory. This, I would argue, covers the substance of Yassin's comments and points to some range or nuance ion Hamas' position.' I disagree. By choosing to report just one nuanced type of comments made by Hamas and Fatah leaders you are skewing public opinion, public opinion that should be allowed to see the full extent of Hamas avowed hatred for all Jews and declared murderous intent towards them. Maybe you could explain to me the nuance in the position that "The time will come, by Allah’s will, when their property will be destroyed and their children will be exterminated, and no Jew or Zionist will be left on the face of this earth."?' Maybe you could show me the range in saying " It is forbidden to have mercy in your hearts for the Jews in any place and in any land. Make war on them any place that you find yourself. Any place that you meet them – kill them. Kill the Jews and those among the Americans who are like them… The Jews only understand might. Have no mercy on the Jews, murder them everywhere."?

Do the BBC consider that sentiments like those I have quoted above are not worthy of reporting or were the BBC unaware of them?

Do you consider that Yasser Arafat's comments are worthy of reporting and would BBC Online have reported them had the means been available in 1993?

Once again I consider that the BBC have not fully addressed my complaint, please do so now.



Some questions for Vince Cable

Most of the media, especially the BBC with articles like this one, seem to be concerned with Vince Cable's disquiet over being secretly recorded, they seem relatively unconcerned by what he said and the implications of what he said.

So here are some questions for Vince Cable that he might care to answer:

1) You were recorded saying that you had "declared war" on Rupert Murdoch, was that a true reflection of your position on this matter or were you lying to your 'constituents'?

2) If this was a true reflection of your position then were you planning on declaring this position before or after you decided on Rupert Murdoch's takeover of BSkyB, or were you going to make a quasi-legal decision from a position of prejudged bias?

3) How do you reconcile your then role as independent arbiter on a major financial takeover with your declared position of being at war with one of the parties? Do you consider that position reasonable or moral?

4) Are there any other businesses, UK based or otherwise, that you consider you have declared war on?

What's so wrong with Natalie Portman's buttocks?

The edited trailer for the film 'Your Highness' with Natalie's Portman's buttocks disappointingly digitally covered up from 1:07

The unedited trailer for the film 'Your Highness' with Natalie Portman's buttocks free and unfettered by digital wizardry from 1:30

Thanks to The Mail for the spot, not that there are any spots on Natalie Portman's seemingly flawless bottom.

Thursday, 23 December 2010

30 new facts about Gordon Brown

The Guardian has gleaned 30 new facts about Gordon Brown from Anthony Seldon's biography. Do take a read of them all, here's a few to whet your appetite (my comments in italics):
'4. Brown often swore about having to meet foreign dignitaries. "'Why the fuck are you making me do this?' he would complain to [Tom Fletcher, his foreign policy adviser] before almost every such meeting," Seldon and Lodge write
Polite chap wasn't he, must be the influence of his upbringing as a son of the manse...

6. Ed Balls is reported to have said: "Every appointment that Gordon has ever made on his own has been a disaster." Seldon and Lodge quote this in relation to the appointment of Stephen Carter to Downing Street.
Was Ed Balls appointed by Gordon Brown?

7. Brown is not able to read newsprint easily. According to Seldon and Lodge, he has to rely on others to keep him informed about what's in the papers.
So at one point we had a blind Home Secretary and a one-eyed poor sighted Chancellor...

8. Brown tried to get parliament to vote for 42-day pre-charge detention to please the Murdoch press, his colleagues believe. "Blair made it very clear to Gordon that he had to come across as tough; the News International people would worry if he was not. That is why he did 42 days," Balls told the authors.
This is the man of principles is it?

9. When Brown met Obama in Downing Street before Obama was elected president, Brown's sons were brought in to extend the length of the meeting because Brown wanted to keep Obama in No 10 for as long as possible.
How pathetic...

10. When Harriet Harman stood in for Brown during the summer holidays in 2008, she was overheard telling a cabinet colleague: "I don't know how Gordon manages to make this job seem so difficult."
Harriet Harman the perfect advertisement for sexual discrimination against women

26. Brown stopped speaking to Mervyn King, the governor of the Bank of England, towards the end of his premiership because he thought King was taking a political stance in the argument about deficit reduction.
Another example of Gordon Brown's famed maturity...

27. Nick Macpherson, the permanent secretary to the Treasury, despaired of Brown's refusal to accept the need for a tougher stance on reducing the deficit. "He just doesn't get it," Macpherson often told colleagues.'
Why should Gordon Brown have got it, he never seemed to get it

And I thought Gordon Brown was wooden

And I thought Gordon Brown was wooden, maybe Ed Balls really is the 'son of Brown'.

Thanks to Guido Fawkes for the 'Son of Brown' video spot.

'Ed's judgment may have been flawed, but at least he could reach a decision rather than putting it off indefinitely,' - Jonathan Powell

The Guardian reports that
'Ed Balls is normally seen as someone who came to power as a protege of Gordon Brown's. Having spent the last few weeks reading the latest Labour memoirs and biographies, I'm beginning to wonder whether it might not be make more sense to view the relationship the other way round.
In their biography, Brown at 10 (which I've written about in more detail here), Anthony Seldon and Guy Lodge describe the Balls-Brown relationship as one that was "far more complex" than one between politician and powerful lieutenant.
In their time at the Treasury together, as their political journeys had developed, they had become increasingly co-dependent. "Ed compensated for Gordon's lack of intellectual confidence by being decisive," says one long-standing colleague. "His all-encompassing certainty became a crutch for Brown in his own intellectual and psychological insecurities." In the bitter atmosphere of the Blair years, that had led to a dangerous, spiralling dynamic. Brown "contracted out to Balls his evaluation of people", says one Treasury official, and Balls thought [Tony] Blair little better than an imbecile. In those difficult years while Brown waited desperately for power, Balls had protected him from attacks, and Brown remained deeply grateful.
There are plenty of anecdotes in the book illustrating Balls's influence over Brown and one of the most telling relates to the moment when Brown became prime minister. Brown agonised about whether to make Balls chancellor, but was worried about antagonising the Blairites. Balls then planted a story in the Daily Mail saying he would not be getting the job. Brown was cross. But Balls told Seldon and Lodge: "I decided to do so to make the decision easier for him."'

Fascinating and scary, Ed Balls was to a degree making economic decisions not Gordon Brown. If in the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is King then what about the one-eyed man's right-hand man?

Brotherly love - Miliband style

I read in The Telegraph that despite Ed Miliband saying that he expected to spend Christmas with David and adding that "no peacekeeping forces will be needed", his older brother has managed to flee the country. As The Telegraph says:
'Ed’s comments about how he evisaged spending Christmas with David, whom he narrowly beat to the Labour leadership, suggest the two are so estranged that they have little, if any, idea about each other’s plan'
I wonder if Ed & David Miliband's Christmas lunch would have been explosive as Ed & Will Grundy's is lining up to be?

The Telegraph reminds us that 'The Milibands were once so close that they would gather with their families each Sunday for lunch.' - Alas, no more; shame!

Do you remember what Labour were like in power?

Now aren't you glad they have gone?

A thought on the Vince Cable affair

The BBC, and much else of the media, are spinning this story as a Tory/Lib Dem feud story but I think that the real story is about the fitness for office of Vince Cable. Now I know that to the BBC he is Saint Vince but were his words those of a saint?

Vince Cable was the Secretary of State for Business and had under his department Ofcom. Ofcom was at the time considering the takeover of BSkyB by Rupert Murdoch's organisation. It seemed, based on previous Ofcom comments and decisions, that Ofcom would not adversely report on the takeover; remember that Ofcom have already decided (re ITV) that having 25% of a media company means that you have sufficiently significant influence over editorial content to cause a regulatory issues. Vince Cable's comments showed very clearly that he had made up his own mind re the issue without waiting for the Ofcom report and that he was in opposition to the likely conclusions of the said report. I believe that as a matter of administrative law Vince Cable was not permitted to do that. Thus to leave Vince with the power to block the Murdoch takeover would likely have led to a law suit, one that Rupert Murdoch was very likely to win.

It seems to me therefore that Vince Cable's words put into question the whole legal process and thus his fitness for government.

Why is five inches of snow shutting down London’s Heathrow airport? Because it’s more concerned with being a mall than plowing runways, writes aviation expert Clive Irving.

Read the whole tarticle here in The Daily Beast; food for thought especially if you have been stuck at Heatrow airport for the last few days.

What was happening at Heathrow during the recent snow?

Travel Mole reports some interesting news:
'Airlines offered Heathrow operator BAA help in clearing snow and ice from the runways but were turned down for health and safety reasons, it emerged today.


... according to the Daily Telegraph, it seems Lufthansa and another unnamed airline said they asked to help because BAA was not clearing snow fast enough but were told that it contravened health and safety rules.


The paper reports a Lufthansa spokesman as saying: "The whole process took too long and should have been started earlier. There was not enough manpower available, we were surprised how long it took to get things operational.

"We were not allowed to clean stands for health and safety reasons. BAA gets a lot of money to operate the airport and they refused to do that."

Another airline said BAA was being “jobsworth” about clearing the snow, refusing to allow frustrated airlines to help.'
What a surprise 'Health and Safety' was one of the factors, I would never have guessed.

Using free speech to attack Christianity

Imagine the furore if a Christian or Jewish group in the UK set-up a website and poster campaign entitled 'Ramadan is Evil'; the BBC would be apoplectic. However thee is not a word when a Muslim group calling itself '' and claiming to be 'Representing the Muslims living in the uk' sets up a website calling Xmas 'the path to hellfire' and including a section headed 'Fruits of Christmas' that runs thus:
'On the 1st day of christmas my true love gave to me an S....T....D.

On the 2nd day debt

On the 3rd rape

On the 4th tennage pregnancy

* Followed by an abortion
* raves
* claiming god has a son
* blasphemy
* exploitation
* promiscuity
* night clubs
* crime
* paedophilia
* paganism
* domestic violence
* homelessness
* alcohol
* drugs...'
There is also a poster campaign

So where's the media fuss? Why are an Islamic group allowed to make such deliberately provocative claims about one of the key dates in the Christian calendar when I am sure any similar campaign aimed at Ramadan or another Islamic festival would be (rightly) attacked from all sides?

"And if they put Jews into gas chambers in the Soviet Union, it is not an American concern"

The words of Henry Kissinger in 1973 as reported by Dry Bones from an article by Arutz Sheva. Here is some more:
'"White House adviser and Secretary of State Henry Kissinger once told President Richard Nixon, "And if they put Jews into gas chambers in the Soviet Union, it is not an American concern. Maybe a humanitarian concern,” according to newly-released tapes from the Nixon library.

The shocking statement from Kissinger, a Jew, was followed up by an agreement from Nixon, who said, "I know. We can't blow up the world because of it."

Kissinger also advised Nixon when he was president during the campaign to free the Jews from the Soviet Union, “The emigration of Jews from the Soviet Union is not an objective of American foreign policy."'
I wish that those people who say that Henry Kissinger was a pro-Israel voice in the White House would recognise the truth.

In the same newly released documents Kissinger also refers to the Golan Heights as "Syrian territory" and the Syrians as "my friends." He also confides to an Algerian diplomat that "a (new Arab-Israeli) war wouldn’t be so bad for us. … We could show (Israel) we are tough." Us? Not a great friend of Israel was he?

As Moshe Dyan said of Kissinger in a 1974 speech:
"It is painful to think that someone who fled Nazi persecution as a young boy in 1938 should do so much damage to the Jewish State. Yet, a closer look shows that Kissinger has, at best, a tenuous connection with his Judaism. Rabbi Norman Lamm, former chancellor of Yeshiva University, spotted this early. In his article “Kissinger and the Jews” (Dec. 20, 1975), a devastating critique, he writes, “Dr. Kissinger is an illustration of how high an assimilated Jew can rise in the United States, and how low he can fall in the esteem of his fellow Jews.”"