Let them all eat cake..

One of the stupidest stories ever covered in the news is, alas, in the news again. And yet again the point is missed. Ashers bakers refused to decorate a cake with a picture of two characters from Sesame Street because they objected to wording which was to go with it: ‘Support Gay marriage’. Their barrister told Ireland’s ‘supreme court’:

“They would equally have refused to provide that cake with the slogan to a heterosexual customer. Their difficulty was the content of the cake, not the characteristic of the customer.” The customer, Gareth Lees, is an ‘activist’ who perhaps chose the prominently Christian business by mistake. I have no doubt he’s a thoroughly nice person. Continue reading

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Flog Him!

A teacher was accused of having under-age sex with a pupil. She has been cleared of this charge. Deborah Lowe – obviously a saucy dirt-box – fancied a portion from a younger guy. No doubt this injection of self-esteem serum sorted her out for a while.

But now the guy she was screwing says she ruined his life. This 17 year-old baby says he’s lost his job, his friends and his reputation. Well, he didn’t have a repuation to lose, but if he lost his job because he had consensual sex with a woman I’d suggest he’s been fired illegally. Continue reading

New Balls Please

I want a male tennis player to ‘identify’ as female and demand the right to play on the womens’ tour. I don’t know how long it will be before this happens. It might be some years before this happens. I have no patience for that, so need it to happen tomorrow if possible.

I used to think I wanted to watch a human walk on Mars before I pegged it, but no longer is that the case. If I could see a male tennis player – ranked, say, 500th in the world – demand to play on the womens tour I would die, not only happy, but cackling like the Joker. I might laugh myself to starvation. Continue reading

A Minor Tour

A Minor Tour through some ‘interpretations’ of Stanley Kubrick’s ‘The Shining’

 

‘People can misinterpret almost anything so that it coincides with views they already hold. They take from art what they already believe.’

  • Stanley Kubrick

 

‘It’s really all going on in his head – Jack’s head.’

 

  • Martin Scorsese

 

‘Interpretation’ is a word many use when they mean ‘imagination’. When somebody tells you that the first Friday the 13th is ‘a post-feminist reaction by the misogynist collective mind to the rise of women in the 1970s in the context of latent-homosexual self-loathing’ the qualifier ‘well, that’s my interpretation of it’ won’t be far behind. At least it better not. It’s possible the film in question isn’t a ‘post-feminist’ reaction, but rather the person claiming it is obsessed with feminism and misogyny and latent-homosexuality and therefore sees these things everywhere. Not only that, and I think more importantly, to refer to the movie in terms which are interpretative rather than imaginative allows the person to believe some intellectual process was going on in their heads: that their opinion is the conclusion to some real intellectual effort, not just a load of crap they’ve imagined into existence or the symptom of their underlying preoccupations. This sort of thing happens all the time. We’ve all heard someone say ‘well, that’s my interpretation’. Unless that person is translating a language, and arguing for a specific meaning as compared to another, I think it’s likely the person has just imagined that the movie is ‘about’ whatever they want it to be about. Some critics reveal nothing but their preoccupations. It is on this point that a few warnings about criticism present themselves.

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Balls to the Data

The Australian ball-tampering ‘scandal’ is almost as big a non-story as the Facebook ‘data-mining’ nonsense.

I recalled some footage of Mike Atherton tampering with the ball from the news years ago. I looked for it on YouTube and found it immediately.

Mike Atherton yesterday wrote a piece in ‘The Australian’ and said:

‘As I know to my cost, the level of moral indignation stirred up by accusations of ball tampering far outweighs the nature of the crime, which carries a mere five-run penalty and is currently ranked as a level two (out of four) offence. Serious, then, according to cricket’s own code of conduct, but not that serious. Ball tampering has gone on since the year dot — lifting the seam, or quarter-seam, scratching the ball, using mints for sugary saliva, throwing the ball in on the bounce in contravention of the code of conduct to scuff one side, and myriad other ways.’

As for Facebook and data, who cares? Facebook is free, if you don’t wants your ‘data’ to be used don’t put it on there. Why wouldn’t companies use it to target advertising and whatever else with their clever Al Gore Rythms? The data is worth gaziliions of dollars to advertisers.

I’m on Facebook and couldn’t care less what any does with my data.

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The Consensus Con

I dislike the term ‘consensus’, especially in matters of what is true. Often, a consensus will be wrong. The point about certainty is that, the more certain one is, the better and more specific the evidence should to be to justify that consensus.

A former British Ambassador as written on the question of the Salisbury attack.

In a piece entitled, ‘Russian to Judgement’ he writes that:

A vital missing word from Theresa May’s statement yesterday was “only”. She did not state that the nerve agent used was manufactured ONLY by Russia. She rather stated this group of nerve agents had been “developed by” Russia. Antibiotics were first developed by a Scotsman, but that is not evidence that all antibiotics are today administered by Scots.

One should read his entire piece. It is interesting.

Today he has posted another piece, entitled, ‘Of a Type developed by Liars’.  He states:

I have now received confirmation from a well placed FCO source that Porton Down scientists are not able to identify the nerve gas as being of Russian manufacture, and have been resentful of the pressure being placed on them to do so. Porton Down would only sign up to the formulation “of a type developed by Russia” after a rather difficult meeting where this was agreed as a compromise formulation.

He continues:

The government has never said the nerve agent was made in Russia, or that it can only be made in Russia. The exact formulation “of a type developed by Russia” was used by Theresa May in parliament, used by the UK at the UN Security Council, used by Boris Johnson on the BBC yesterday and, most tellingly of all, “of a type developed by Russia” is the precise phrase used in the joint communique issued by the UK, USA, France and Germany yesterday:

‘This use of a military-grade nerve agent, of a type developed by Russia, constitutes the first offensive use of a nerve agent in Europe since the Second World War.’

When the same extremely careful phrasing is never deviated from, you know it is the result of a very delicate Whitehall compromise.

School Days

I don’t really understand the argument against grammar schools because I don’t understand what’s wrong with the principle of selection by ability. It’s used pretty much everywhere else, from sport to space-programs. If there was a way I could know how it felt to be opposed to the idea of grammars then I would try it.

Am I right in thinking that selection by ability is the only way to have a ‘two-tier’ system which is fair? A ‘two-tier’ system cannot be avoided because parents don’t care about other parents’ children. It seems to make sense, then, that the state mitigate this natural trait.

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Gender Jerks, Pronoun Prats and the Reversal of Reason

I had no idea until yesterday the gender pronoun argument was a global phenomenon. I was reading a comment on a blog thread and the person mentioned a piece by Douglas Murray in the The Spectator about an interrogation a young teaching assistant was subjected to by faculty-staff at her university. The young lady recorded the Stasi Staff and sent the content around the world. I had thought it was a minor question, the reserve of attention-seekers.

It’s a global psychotic episode. Continue reading