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Friday, 27 September 2013

Uber Bad Taste

There's bad taste and then there's really bad taste. The owner of the Tumbledown Trails Golf Course in Wisconsin advertised nine holes of golf for $9.11 to mark the 12th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks .....

All Done In The Best Possible Taste

Apparently they had been making this offer in the Wisconsin State Journal for several years without any comment, before one of the self righteous, who seem to patrol our public consciousness these days as self ordained ministers of our moral well being, decided to get involved, and the the advert went viral.

As you might expect, this led to the usual death threats on Social Media sites .... we get more and more like the rest of the backward world in that regard. So he has apologised .... however it has to be said that he may not really understand why he has to do so.

"We're a little hurt by the fact that people are putting such a negative context on this. I thought people would appreciate it."

But bravely he added  "We could close, but then all these people with their negative attitudes, they win.'' .... I couldn't agree more. Time was when a little crassness or bad taste might get a reproving comment but not 'death threats', we were tolerant enough to let it go ..... but not now. We now use the Internet to form vigilante mobs and hound people in Troll Attacks.

Is that so far removed from the real mobs in the Muslim world, who burn houses and kill people? Not so far in my opinion.

Oh Unlucky Women

We all like to think that good luck or lady fortune will one day smile on us and shower us with her beneficence, maybe a lottery win .... but how about when the lady looks the other way? What about the day  lady luck frowns in your direction?

My mind turned to this when I came across two stories on the same day that seemed to show extreme (but non fatal) bad luck.

The first story involves a Swedish lady and a gorilla ..... no nothing lurid. It appears that Gorillas, who are not known for throwing stones (unlike Chimpanzees who have been known to throw faeces and even stack stones to plan an attack on people), can pick up new tricks, and at the Kolmården National Park in central Sweden one of the five gorillas has learnt to throw and aim stones ..... they threw a stone that stone measured roughly five centimetres in diameter, across a moat and hit a woman on the head causing her to need treatment.

This behaviour is extremely unusual for gorillas who normally just throw objects like grass in the air ..... but apparently the particular gorilla has previous on this, with reports that Enzo the gorilla had thrown a stone at at a boy in July last year but missed. What makes this even odder is that Santino the rock ambushing Chimpanzee is also in a Swedish Zoo .... but not the same zoo (he's in the Furuvik Zoo in Gävle, Sweden).  However, funny though this is, one can't help but think, that it was very unlucky to be struck by a stone thrown by a gorilla .... its just not an everyday experience.

The second tale was of a restored horse drawn tram, which after an eight year restoration, was being put back on track in Leeds for the first time in 112 years, but which then rolled over a lady horse groom, after one of the horses pulling it bolted .... she suffered broken legs, but is not in a fatal condition. Once again, one has to wonder at the extreme ill fortune to be run over by a tram that has not been on the streets since Victorian times.

First Person Run Over By Horse Drawn Tram In 112 Years.

You have to assume that lady luck was frowning on both these unfortunate ladies on these occasions .....

Get Smart

The BBC have rather belatedly picked up on the fact that some countries are so indoctrinated by their lifestyle that they can accuse and arrest vultures, and sharks etc, for spying for Mossad, or maybe the CIA (or even India, in the case of Pakistan). Of course we at PC towers have been laughing at this stupidity for several years. Its almost impossible to take these people seriously, until you realise that the idiots who make these ridiculous accusations are the same as those who are in fact in charge of security for the regions.

They are also the same people who may one day have a finger on a nuclear button ......

The BBC report, while going over ground that this blog has covered (Vultures arrested by the Saudi's, and Sharks of the resort of Sharm el-Sheikh in 2010 accused of being radio controlled Mossad agents by an Egyptian governor), it also added a few additional snippets on top of these gems.

By the way, much of this apparent stupidity and backwardness stems simply from the fact that to much of the third world since 1900, Trains, Cars, Radio, Telephones, Airplanes, TV, Computers and now Smart-phones, have appeared from the Western (and Oriental) world, almost like magic .... they use these wonders, but can't work out why these things all come from a world that they are often told is 'inferior' to their own.

Many of these cultures ceased to have enquiring scientific minds, as their religions took an ever firmed grip on their lives and thought patterns. This was not the case early in some cultures, as they were first exposed to Greek, Roman and or Indian and Chinese scholarship, but when their science first butted up against their religions, it was science and rationality that gave way - unlike for example in the West, where the dead hand of dogma had to slowly concede ground to science.

So the general public and many of the religious and political rulers of these cultures imagine that almost anything is possible by the rest of the world .... which is why, without blushing they are able to
  • Arrest a stork a couple of weeks ago in Egypt, on suspicion of espionage, apparently mistaking its migration tag for spying equipment!
  • And in in 2007 the Iranian army proudly arrested a team of 14 "spy squirrels" found near a nuclear enrichment plant (which of course isn't making a bomb, therefore has nothing to hide from the world). Iranian officials announced to the world that in another triumph for their security forces, they had succeeded in apprehending the suspects "before they were able to take any action"
Nutty Nutkins - Super Spy

Remember, that ironically these people often also consider that their ways of life and cultures are superior in every way to the rest of the worlds, so they hang, burn or behead witches and fortune tellers, just to show how enlightened they are ...... they are also the fastest growing immigrant groups in Europe, so the Middle Ages could well be just a few decades away for the rest of us as well. 

Silly Season

In August we have what's know as the Silly Season in the way UK newspapers report stories ..... this all stems from the belief a century or more ago that with politicians on holiday, all news died for a month. There are variants of this idea across the English speaking world.

This being the case news stories of a strange kind are often given a prominence that they would never get any other time of the year. .... so you get pictures like this posted by newspapers as 'news stories'.

God Giving The Finger, Or Just Clouds - Your Choice.
This slightly odd cloud formation was interpreted by some newspapers as looking like a hand with the middle finger straight out .... which if you squint a bit it does, but its hardly unusual, or worth a news story, except in August in the UK.

Incidentally, the idea that nothing could happen in the late European summer months, is not confined to just the UK's Newspapers .... whenever a foreign crisis unfolds in August/September, such as the recent Syria 'nerve gas' event, the Kenyan Mall attack, etc etc, the British Prime Minister invariably has to be recalled from holidays .... it happens every year .... you would think by now that that the press would know better.

A Voice In The Wilderness

Once again the world is dripping with the blood of innocent men, women and children as Islam’s ‘holy warrior martyrs’ either blow themselves up in to the arms of 60 virgins, (by killing and maiming hundreds of Christians), or launching a machine gun and grenade attack on hundreds of unarmed shoppers in a Kenyan shopping mall. All grist to the bloody mill, as the religion of peace (or submission as it is actually translated from the Arabic), once again illustrates why its reviled as 'bloody and backward' across much of the globe.

Of course, instead of tackling this backwardness head-on in the West, our politicians largely say nothing, and instead try to pander to the Islamists that they have let through the Gates of Vienna and into Europe, by suggesting that the Niqab and full Burka are welcome additions to our culture. In fact with just a modicum more of compromise on our part (by altering our views to accommodate Muslim women’s cultural view), we can allow face coverings in courts, jails, and public jobs such as hospitals, social workers, and in fact any customer facing role you care to mention.

Obviously the wearers of these extreme outfits (and make no mistake, this is not considered to be a religious requirement in the major Islamic schools - Sheikh Mohamed Tantawi, the then dean of al-Azhar university in Egypt, called full-face veiling ‘a custom that has nothing to do with the Islamic faith’ ....… and I think he knows a bit more about Islam, than some covered up immigrant girl from North Africa or Pakistan), will in general only have to make the sacrifice of removing the face coverings in the most extreme of cases …. For the rest of the time, no matter how offended many non Muslims feel about seeing this dress code in our streets, or how distasteful we find the practise of hiding ones face in general, we have to say nothing.

British Culture - Now And ?????
Our cultural values are once again ignored, to pander instead to this one group of religious extremists from a culture very different to our own.

Rather oddly Christians, and in fact any Non Muslims can be discriminated against, or even prosecuted for discriminating against Muslims (recent cases include the wearing of a cross being offensive to Muslims), whereas a Muslim ‘free’ school, paid for by the state, can discriminate against non Muslim women by forcing the women teachers to cover their heads … not take non-Halal food into the school, and not being allowed to wear jewellery. They are apparently even making girls sit at the back of the class – as boys are superior – and all in the centre of England (Derby to be precise).

As usual, this is not commented upon by the political parties who run the nation …. ‘too sensitive’, might get a Muslim mob issuing threats, and anyway the ‘English’ are too tolerant to complain themselves, so we can ignore the issue and the threat it implies to our culture. seems to be the thinking.

We really are sleepwalking to the chopping block, and with our eyes fully wide open.

Saturday, 21 September 2013

Weird Records

In an age where idiots such as myself, can very easily make a grab for my 15 minutes of fame via the Internet - YouTube springs to mind as the quickest way to record a song, film an event, or even make your own film, and post it to a world audience - then the idea that any other method once existed is something of new one.

Of course 'vanity publishing', where you paid for a limited print run of a self written book, then gave copies to friends etc, and hoped that this might generate some interest and prompt a publisher to buy up the rights, and publish more copies, is as old as publishing itself. Indeed this form of publishing is more popular than ever in the age of the computer and desktop publishing, and I know of at least two people who have paid a few hundred pounds for a run of 50 to 100 books (illustrated books cost more), and then told everyone that they had 'written a book and been published', neglecting to point out that it was a self publication. Indeed the arrival of eBook publishing has led the self published book Fifty Shades of Grey, to become a worldwide sales phenomenon.  

However, what did you do if you wanted an audio record?

Well famously, there used to be booths in some record shops in the 1950's and 1960's, where you could sing into a microphone, and a single vinyl record would be produced, but this had no fancy sleeve cover, and of course, usually there was just one rather expensive 'promo' copy produced.

Then as discussed before on this blog, the age of the tape recorder opened up a chance to comparatively cheaply produce a dozen or so copies, but they were hardly satisfactory as sellable adverts of a persons talents - and even after the advent of the cassette tape, when you could make make cheap transportable copies of your work, it was hardly good enough to pass off as a 'professional' production. Only later with desktop publishing, when you could even add coloured 'professional' labels, was this self recording viable, but by then the cassette was largely dead (outside of a limited audience for band promos), so this was a very small market ....

But there was for a brief time, another market that flourished. This was when the pressing plants themselves (where the vinyl Long Players and Singles where actually produced), started advertising on US TV, that you too could become a recording artist (with a  professional print sleeve cover of your design), but you needed to pay for a minimum run of 500 copies .... so not cheap, but affordable if you wanted it bad enough.
 

So in the 1950's, right through to the 1990's in the USA, this form of self recording flourished, even though few, if any of these records ever 'sold', and most ended up as purely vanity projects. Sadly, their day ended with the CD, Internet and YouTube, but these records are now collectables, not for their musical quality, but for their goofiness, their rareness (they may well be the only copy left), and possibly their 'can do' spirit .... 



If this post has piqued your interest in the subject, look out for the book 'Enjoy the Experience'  (ISBN-10: 1938265041) edited by Johan Kugelberg, Michael P Daley and Paul Major.   


Personally I like the covers for what they say about the artists motivations in self producing these albums, and not for the records they contain ....

  

Only One Carolina In The Morning

The breaking news this week is that the US nearly had a "Dr Strangelove" moment in 1961, when it dropped two atomic bombs, each were four-megatons, that's 260 times powerful than the bombs that fell on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, on Goldsboro in the state of North Carolina.

The event occurred in January 1961, when a B52 on a routine flight when it began to break up in the sky, both bombs fell to the ground, one was still unarmed when it hit as all the safety protocols worked. But the second "assumed it was being deliberately released over an enemy target - and went through all its arming mechanisms save one .... only the failure of a single low-voltage switch prevented disaster".

If either bomb had gone off, it would likely have wiped a large swathe of the state off the map and rendered the rest of the state uninhabitable .... it may even have triggered a nuclear war, if politicians or military had misinterpreted the event at as an attack by the USSR.

So thank your lucky stars that US manufacturing was already in decline because the failure of just one simple dynamo-technology low voltage switch, stopped a disaster that could have had cataclysmic consequences.

Broken Arrows - North Carolina 1961 - Palomares 1966 - how many more?

Of course this wasn't the only 'Broken Arrows' incident that the US have reported under 'freedom of information' requests, but apparently it was the closest we came to lighting up the sky .... that they have admitted to.

But what's even more disturbing is that the USSR was notoriously even more inefficient in its technology at the time, so how many close shaves did they have in that period? I guess we will never know ... perhaps its better we don't.

Jilted By Uncle Sam

How quickly the love dies ....  it seems the British aren’t special anymore …. The US doesn’t love us anymore, and have found a sexy new partner. ‘Cherchez la femme’ they used to say when your man started acting oddly or out of character, and now, thanks to the UK’s socialist Labour party’s little bit of politics (when not backing the government motion supporting action against Syria – after privately promising to do so), Britain is perceived by our main ally to have gone ‘a little wobbly’, with our ‘Special Relationship’, apparently counting for nothing the moment we stop barking at the same time as the USA.

Whereas socialist France, which has taken the lead in calls for military intervention, is now being wooed, with siren calls from across the Atlantic for ‘our oldest ally’ (against the British), to kiss and make up after the spats of recent years (Iraq in particular – where the French were proved correct, there was no threat to the West from WMD’d), but also those harsh words under the De Gaulle years are to be forgotten.

Oldest Alliance Back On Again

Admittedly France is pursuing its own agenda as the ex colonial power in Syria, which just happens to coincide with that of the Americans, but the US was so desperate for a fig leaf of support as to not care …. Why they have even restored ‘French Fries' ('Chips' in the UK) to the Whitehouse menu – they were renamed ‘American Fries’ for a while.

So no longer the "cheese-eating surrender monkeys", and leading member of "Axis of Weasel" of the mid 1990’s, the French are welcomed to the top table, while poor Britain struggles to find any sort of meaningful role …. even branded by the Russians as "just a small island, that no one pays any attention to anymore" … we find out that unless we are prepared to use force, then we are nothing, even our UN Security Council seat is being looked at.

So the law of 'unexpected consequences' strikes again. David Cameron is the PM who has cut the UK’s military to that of a defence force, rather than an army – and the backstabber Ed Milliband (who has previous on promises – ask his brother), takes a gamble to embarrass the government, for some local political gain, and suddenly Britain's fragile grip on the top table of world politics is looking decidedly shaky …. c'est la guerre as the French like to say.

Butter Fingers

American tourists, don't have the greatest of reputations for respecting other peoples cultures (nor in fact do the British) .... but doing a museum is kinda expected when visiting Florence, but no one really claims to have enjoyed it. However, what little good reputation the US traveller still had in Italy, took a serious nose-dive after an American tourist 'man handled' (probably just grasped) a 14th-Century statue in the Museo dell'Opera del Duomo in the Italian city of Florence.

Normally this would have earned him just a rebuke by the security guards, but things went a little further when the statue promptly lost a finger .... the nearest guard had tried to stop the tourist but was too late to avert the damage. Now if the sculpture (believed to be the work of Giovanni d'Ambrogio) had been of a leper, then all might have been well (after all, what would one finger here or there matter?), but it wasn't, and it isn't. The museum's director wasn't a happy bunny, and although the tourist 'apologised' he may well be liable to a fine, he may well be forced to pay for the repair (although its unclear how much it will cost to fix the broken finger).

Losing Fingers Off Statues Can Lead To Unfortunate Results ...

On the bright side, he wasn't the first person to have damaged this statue, at least one other medieval 'tourist' had suffered the same embarrassment as the finger which came off, was in fact a replacement for the original,
and had been added at a later date.

Friday, 13 September 2013

Recreating Gotham

Have you ever wondered how film sets are set up in the middle of big cities?

Well a few years ago, the mean streets of Manchester were turned into a 1940's US landscape for some superhero movies (it may have been Captain America, but I'm not sure), and I happened to be there and took some pictures .....



Notice the wheels underneath the last picture set ...... roll on, roll off scenery.

The Lion That Barked

A Chinese zoo official in Henan province thought he was way too clever ..... so when the zoo's only lion was sent away for a bit of R 'n' R to a breeding centre, instead of just putting up a sign informing visitors of this fact, he simply substituted a zoo workers dog for the missing lion.

The Henan "Lion" - Really A Tibetan Mastiff
 
Now I know that parts of rural China are far more backward than many Westerners realise (we forget that a few major well developed cities make up only a minority of China's population), but surely the locals know what a lion looks like?

Even so, it was only when 'the lion' started barking that the scheme was exposed ....  and then more cunning substitutions came to light. Other species were also apparently mislabelled with a white fox in the leopard's den, and yet another dog being passed off as a wolf ....still looking at the grim conditions in the zoo, maybe the missing animals are the lucky ones.

Death And Taxes

Benjamin Franklin famously said that in this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes. Of course while true, its not an absolute. In Pakistan and Greece for example, many avoid paying any taxes at all, but that's another story.

So the only variable in the equation for most of us is exactly how much are we taxed. Now I don't know about you, but I had vaguely assumed that all western democracies would generally pay similar amounts as the cost of running a state would be roughly equivalent ... but in fact there are big differences (health care, private or public provision, is a big factor but there are other factors). 

I came across this illustration of what we all pay or don't pay (depending upon your view point) ....

Death And Taxes - How Much Do You Pay?
 
Its striking that the UK is heavily taxed at both the lower and higher ends of the salary rates .... Russia on the other hand is hardly taxed. With the exception of the oil states such as Dubai, the provision of good public services seems to be the key to the rates, but it does make you question why you are taxed so much, when you see that countries such as Japan are being taxed less than us.

Little Prick Of Pride

President Zuma of South Africa is not known for his easy nature, and his behaviour towards women (with his multiple wives, and the publicity fallout from the 'rape case'), has led to criticisms of him that an African 'Big Man' leader wouldn't normally put up with.

But South Africa being a putative democracy, he has to take it on the pecker so to speak. So when a painting by Brett Murray called 'The Spear', showing him with his genitals hanging out, and thus alluding to both his alleged misogyny and the African National Congress Party (Umkhonto we Sizwe, was the armed wing of the ANC - abbreviated as MK, and translated as "Spear of the Nation"), was hung up  at the Goodman Gallery in Rosebank in May last year, he had to tolerate it.

ANC activists called it "rude, crude and disrespectful" and went to court for an order to remove it from display, but failed. However two men later defaced the genitals and the face, and were both convicted last week, with one fined and the other receiving a suspended prison sentence.

Worth More Defaced .....

But in another strange twist, the original picture was valued at about 100,000 Rand, but the defaced version at a higher amount ..... its hard to work out whose pride has been hurt more by the events, the president or the painter.
 

Friday, 6 September 2013

UFO's Or Money Woes

Do you believe that UFO's include alien space craft?

That's Unidentified Flying Objects by the way - not flying saucers, nor space craft .... many confuse these two different things. I ask, because it seems to me that the belief in aliens visiting earth regularly has diminished over the past decade or so. Now this is purely my personal opinion, with no scientific evidence to back it up - but then the subject has no scientific evidence to support it any case. 

However I wonder if this decline in belief (if this has actually happened), may be a result of two things .... firstly the relentless science that we have obtained, as our own real space craft have visited the outer limits of the solar system, and this may have contributed to this decline.

After all the Voyager space craft have been travelling since they were launched in 1977, and still haven't actually broken out of the Solar System (although sometime this year one of them will likely do so) ..... and it will be 40,000 yrs before one of them comes close to another solar system when Voyager 1 will be within 1.6 light years of the star Gliese 445, while Voyager 2, whilst not headed toward any particular star, will if left alone, eventually pass by the star Sirius when their travels intercept in about 296,000 years from now. When you think on that scale, its hard for anyone to see aliens visiting Earth every decade or so since 1948.

But secondly, I suspect that alien landings and the belief in them, is directly connected to Western economic well being .... my theory is that in the 1940's through to the end of the 1960's all western economies were growing, powerful, and peoples wealth was increasing - especially in the USA, which combined with an expansionist 'can do' feel to it, made even the very boundaries of space seem to be just one more scientific breakthrough away. NASA back then, expected to have colonised Mars by the mid 1980's.

So my the theory is that when everything is OK in the general well being of society, the better the economy performed, and the standard of living increased, the more many people look elsewhere for causes for worries or threats, and UFO's as visiting alien space craft, was therefore a widely held public belief, right the way up until the 1970's.

UFO's Regularly 'Buzzed' Earth

But then the oil depression in the 1970's caused Western growth to falter, and since then the US (and the West generally), has been in budget deficit more than surplus ..... the exception being the second Bill 'its the economy stupid' Clinton term when between 1998 - 2001 saw the US economy in surpluses. Belief in the West in aliens visiting Earth, seems to have largely waned during this economic decline (oddly, it waxed again around the millennium which also coincided with US surpluses again) .... I repeat, this is purely a personal observation and completely non scientific.

I just suspect that the idea that Earth is regularly being buzzed by teen aliens in flying saucers, mutilating cattle, abducting (and probing) men and women, and never once being filmed or caught, is such an unlikely event, that its belief is linked to the well-being of the society of the reporters. i.e. We create fears and scares when there are non visible around us .... depressed economies give us enough to worry about without little green men around every corner.

Divine Light

Who would have thought that a bottle, some water, a black top, two teaspoons of bleach, and a bit of resin, could transform millions of lives, but put together the correct way, they produce light in dark spots during the day. They are called Moser lights after the Brazilian inventor Alfredo Moser, and if there is any justice in the world, then he should get a Nobel Prize (it may not be the biggest breakthrough in science but its impact for good is huge) ... instead he has made no money at all.

These 'daylights' remove the need for stolen or expensive electricity to light garages, dark home (slum homes rarely have many windows for security and space reasons), small work stations and even bedrooms at the back of habitations. Its also incredibly eco-friendly (recycling plastic, using less electricity, and the water doesn't have to be potable), in areas of the world where ecological damage is part of the background of every day life.

The method to make them is as follows:
  • Fill an empty two-litre plastic bottle.
  • Add two capfuls of bleach (to protect the water so it doesn't turn green with algae) - The cleaner the bottle, the better.
  • Makes a hole in a roof tile with a drill and then, from the bottom upwards, push the bottle into the newly-made hole.
  • Seal the bottle into the hole with resin to hold it in place and prevent rain getting through. 

And that's it .... a light. Depending on how strong the sun it's more or less 40 to 60 watts of light. Enough indeed to grow food on small hydroponic farms, using the light provided by the bottle lamps .... over a million people have benefited from these simple lights, and many many millions more expected to benefit over the next decade.

Moser Lights - A Minor Miracle For The Third World.

So how does it work, "Refraction" (which is the bending of light,  caused by a change in its speed as it moves through different mediums e.g from air to water). So sunlight is bent by the bottle of water, and spread around the room, an effect we have all observed occasionally, but an act of genius by Mr Moser to realise the potential in the third world ..... a divine light as Mr Moser calls it.

We live in a strange world, in which recognition is only given to those who make obscure breakthroughs on star building theories, but not for a practical method to make the light from those suns serve the poor.

All Thats Wrong About UK Immigration

Have you heard of Emelia Brobbey? No? Well neither had I until recently.

I came across her name and story while researching another subject for another site .... and it typifies the degree to which the UK has lost control of its borders, and why the NHS is continually claiming to be 'underfunded', despite the fact that vast amounts of the national wealth are pumped in to it.

Ms Brobbey is an actress from Ghana who has made over thirty movies, apparently receiving numerous local acting awards. She runs her own film production house called 'Endtime' Films and has her own foundation registered as the ‘Emelia Brobbey Charity Organization’ to help the less privileged. She has no claim to a British passport and no right to residence here. She remarried recently and fell pregnant - so she obtained a holiday visa for the UK.

In March 2013 she arrives in the UK on a visitors visa and went to stay with fellow actress Gloria Agyeman who was living in a Waltham Forest house in London. However this wasn't a 'holiday' .... it was health care tourism (Something many in the NHS denies happens), whereby pregnant women from West Africa (and all other parts of the globe), arrive in the UK for 'holidays', only to have their children at the UK taxpayers expense. So in June 2013 she duly had her child in the UK, presumably using the National health Service and paying nothing ....

Not content with this probable fraud perpetrated against the UK, and the fact that in a double win, her child will no doubt be able to claim a UK passport in the future, in July, she went shopping with her new baby, and was arrested for shop lifting in Pearson's Departmental Store in Enfield, when she set off the alarm while leaving. She had been physically detained and taken to a private room for a body search, where a bracelet was uncovered. She denied it was theft and the police were called, but when presented with CCTV footage she 'paid' for the item. The police charged her with shoplifting and she was fined.

The police weren't satisfied with elements of her story and visited the address she had given, which was that of Gloria Agyeman, who happened to have another 'friend' staying, 'actress' Eunice Akua Adjeiwaa. Investigations found that all the residents of the address  had question marks against their immigration status, and Eunice Akua Adjeiwaa was detained and later deported. Ms Agyeman was told to report daily to the police as her visa was long expired (but she had married so may avoid deportation), while Ms Brobbey returned to a heroes welcome in Ghana on the 25th of July, when she was met by friends and colleagues chanting 'songs of victory' on her arrival.

Emelia Brobbey - Heroes Welcome
 
Despite having admitted guilt and paid a fine in the UK, she told local reporters who were at the airport that she was wrongfully accused, but a lady called 'Expensive White Berry' went on to facebook and denounced Ms Brobbey as a liar. She claimed to not only have witnessed the event, but filmed it, and also that the theft was Ms Brobbey's second offence, that she had 'stolen some earrings on the first occasion' from the same store .....

So what does this tale tell us?
  • Well firstly that NHS health tourism is not only real, but thriving and costing us millions, if not billions.
  • Secondly, that visa overstays are here in the UK in vast numbers, taking up jobs (in some instances), or claiming welfare benefit resources, health, and housing and committing crimes.
  • and finally, that we have no control on the borders, and can't track those who are here, or who is getting passports via scams and fraud.

None of this is new of course, but its rare that one story manages to highlight all the issues so clearly.

Fat City

I had heard of Bergs in South Africa (mountains), Icebergs in the Antarctic, but not 'Fatbergs' under London .... there are apparently two differences between 'Ice' and 'Fat' Bergs.

1) One is made of water frozen into Ice and the other of sewer content bound together by fat deposits.
2) The Iceberg is 9/10th under water, while the Fatberg is fully submerged under sewage.

How do I know this?

Well Britain's biggest ever "Fatberg" has just been removed from a Kingston (London) sewer .... it was the size of a bus and weighed 15 tonnes according to the water authority, and was composed of a nasty mixture of food fat combined in an unholy bond with wet wipes, condoms and other unmentionables. These 'Fatberg' are formed in drains under roads in major conurbations around the world.

London's Fatberg

The Thames Water board (and others), are warning of the dangers of "Fatbergs," saying that it was trying to spread the message of "bin it and don't block it" ..... this particular one has taken three weeks to clear, and they still have to repair the damage it caused underground. Apparently if left, if would eventually have led to raw sewage spurting out of manholes across the whole of the area.

Apparently, they have actually recycled the berg ..... its been turned into power station fuel.

It makes you shudder to think  .... imagine having to clean up after that dam burst.

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