Tuesday, 3 December 2019

Tories And The NHS

Donald Trump, when asked whether the NHS would be discussed between US and UK officials for a future trade deal after Brexit, said: "No, not at all. I have nothing to do with it. Never even thought about it, honestly. I don't even know where that rumour started'.
I think i can help out there, the rumours began when he was asked in June if a NHS trade deal should be on the table in any trade negotiations, replied: 'I think everything with a trade deal should be on the table. The NHS or anything else, absolutley'.
The row has exploded following 451 pages of notes on secret trade deal talks with the US which states the NHS is up for grabs and today UK Foreign Secretary, Dominic Raab, trying to put out the flames argued that it was a ludicrous assertion and he had: 'never advocated for the privatisation of the NHS' which sounded good until unfortunately the BBC Presenter he was being interviews by
produced a copy of Raab's book, 'After the Coalition' co-authored with fellow Tories Kwasi Kwarteng, Chris Skidmore, Priti Patel, and Liz Truss where he advocated for the privatisation of the NHS in the context of post-Brexit trade negotiations with the US.
A rattled Raab then blustered that he and his Conservative colleagues were actually referring to services such as coffee shops and florists that operate within the UK health care system despite Nick Robinson actually reading back to him parts where it clearly said hospitals being run by private companies with no mention of coffee shops.
Former Health Minister, Jeremy Hunt, along with fellow Conservatives Douglas Carswell, Michael Gove, Daniel Hannan, Greg Clark, David Gauke, and Kwasi Kwarteng also wrote a book called 'Direct Democracy: An Agenda For A New Model Party' where they advocated for the privatisation of the NHS so it is not hard to see why the suspicion is there that the Tories are looking to sell it off.
That they have the sex fiend Donald Trump on their side is bad enough but to be this bad at lying is scandalous.

What Am I Missing?

When it comes to voting, my father has always said that his golden rule is to think, 'Are we better off now then when this Government took over' and by any stretch of the imagination, we are not.
Look in any high street and you will see the homeless sheltering in doorways, look at any Food Bank and you will see queues including people who are in work but are unable to buy the food they need and look at a hospital and see the queues waiting to get seen and it is hard to say yes, we are better off than we were 10 years ago.  
To my mind, the Conservatives have been awful, as bad as i can remember any Government being and that was with them hamstrung with a coalition for the first five years and the lack of a meaningful majority in the second five with Brexit sucking the life out of their time in power so seeing what they have done while shackled, to unshackle them and let them really go to town with their right wing
agenda is a scary thought.
For ten years they told us at every opportunity that it was essential they cut benefits while at the same time cutting taxes for the richest and every politician spins, that has unfortunately become the norm, but now we have outright lies.  
The 40 New Hospitals they promised to build only a fortnight ago turns out to be now be 6, the 50,000 more nurses is a sleight of hand and somehow counts nurses already currently working in the NHS and the 20,000 new police officers is still less than the amount they cut under their austerity measures.
The Conservatives have announced a new house-building scheme and a tax hike on foreign home owners which is exactly what they promised in their 2015 manifesto and so far they’ve managed to build zero and Theresa May proposed exactly the same levy on overseas home buyers, before it was watered down and then disappeared altogether.
As Boris Johnson is a proven liar, and was even found to be lying to the Queen only just before the election was called, it is amazing that people are looking at the state of the country, the austerity, the lying and the broken promises and are thinking they deserve five more years and that includes letting them deal with Brexit which economists have said will make us poorer whichever flavour we
end up with.
The polls are showing a Conservative lead and i find myself asking what can all these potential Tory voters see which i can't?

Monday, 2 December 2019

Benjamin Franklin...Just Saying

The house at 36 Craven Street, Charing Cross in London has one of those little blue plaques which shows that a famous person once lived there, in this case Benjamin Franklin who lived at the address from 1757 to 1762 and then once again between 1764 and 1775.
As one of the Founding Fathers of the United States, the House has been opened to the public as the Benjamin Franklin House but in 1998, workmen restoring the building dug up the remains of six children and four adults hidden below the home. The Times reported on February 11, 1998:
'Initial estimates are that the bones are about 200 years old and were buried at the time Franklin was living in the house. Most of the bones show signs of having been dissected, sawn or cut. One skull has been drilled with several holes.'
The organisation responsible for the restoration, Friends of Benjamin Franklin House, explained that the bones were likely placed there by William Hewson, who lived in the house for two years between Franklins stays.
Alarmingly they then note that while Franklin likely knew what Hewson was doing, he probably did not participate in any dissections because he was much more of a physicist than a medical man. Probably didn't participate!!
Not saying he murdered people and stuck them under the patio but he did have a history of killing animals to show the effects of electricity and was a pioneer of electroconvulsive shock therapy, so just saying, after all he probably didn't even participate.

Saturday, 30 November 2019

Speak Up Trump

Blow up the big baby balloon and dig out the Impeach the Orange signs because Donald Trump is coming back to the UK on Monday.
In a sign of exasperation, Prime Minister Boris Johnson has begged him not to make any comments regarding the forthcoming UK elections, mostly because Trump is about as popular as a foreskin in a synagogue with us Brits and any backing he gives for The Conservatives will not reflect well that he is on their side.   
Trump arrives in London for a two-day Nato summit which will see him greeted on Tuesday evening by doctors, nurses and other NHS workers leading a protest of tens of thousands outside Buckingham Palace after he said on his previous trip that the NHS would be part of any trade negotiations although the Conservatives had been unsuccessfully trying to deny this ever since.
Labour, mindful of the fact Trump can be relied upon to say and do stupid things, have released a document that shows that the NHS has already been part of talks and will be desperately trying to goad the President to living up to his reputation and sticking his big fat foot into his gob and saying something which will only hurt the Conservatives campaign.
Trump has already said that Labour Party leader, Jeremy Corbyn, would be 'so bad for Britain' and that Johnson should do a pact with Brexit Party leader Nigel Farage which led to some awkward questions being asked for Boris and his band of right wingers and he was also critical of Theresa May's Brexit policy when she hosted him in the summer.
If i was a Conservative Party member i would be hoping that his plane breaks down because it is highly unlikely that the walking loose cannon will be able to resist saying something and the Labour and Liberal Democrat Parties will be really hoping that he does. 

America Not The Good Guy?

NBC Reporters probably don’t get out of the USA much because it seems that one has only just found out that not everyone shares his view that America is the good guy.
'The more I talk to sources, the more i’m hearing America has become the bad guys' he wrote, adding that hearing it was a gut punch.
He also lamented the days before Donald Trump, when American foreign policy decisions were apparently always carried out with noble intentions and without ulterior motives, oh dear, i wonder which cave Mr Engel has been in that he missed the pre-Trump years of wars in Vietnam, Iraq, Libya, Afghanistan, Korea, Yugoslavia, Guantanamo Bay and the 70 year embargo on Cuba, the dropping of the atomic bomb on Hiroshima and support for Israel amongst many other things.
Trump has been awful but the awfulness started a long time before he plonked his massively rotund backside in the Oval Office so it is even more shocking that a foreign correspondent was unaware that American foreign policy wasn't as popular elsewhere outside of the American borders.
That it was greeted with a Duh!! You think!!' by everyone else shows that being a foreign correspondent for NBC doesn't necessarily mean being aware of US foreign policy.
Despite not knowing that America is not as well thought of as America thinks it is globally, the next question posed is just when does Mr Engel consider America was the good guy carrying out their policy with noble intentions and without ulterior motives?
Even Britain in it's Empire building, mass murdering pomp never had the brass neck to try and pull that one.

How To Win The Lottery

A family from my current neck of the woods won £105 million on the lottery and immediately said he would carry on working and said his daughters first question when he told her was could she have an iphone.
The National Lottery has made over 2,400 draws since it was launched in 1994 and despite odds of 45 million to 1, it has created over 5,000 millionaires who have won more than £8.5bn in total, at an average of £2.8m each so the odds might be very much against you but there are millionaires created most weeks so what is the secret?
Over the 2,400 draws the most common numbers have been 40, 23, 28, 11, 30 and 35 and of the lottery winners, only 7% use birthday dates, a meagre 4% use ages so avoid those.
20% of winners are a syndicate of friends, family or work colleagues and the most winning tickets of over £50,000 were purchased in the Scottish Borders in Galashiels, then Romford, Cleveland, Warrington and Sunderland.
As well as travelling to buy your ticket, you may want to stop off at the Deed Poll Office and change your name to Derek, David or Dave which are the luckiest names.
The luckiest job is driving as drivers have won the most jackpots, followed by builders so if you avoid birthday numbers, travel up to the Scottish borders, change your name to Derek and change jobs to become a delivery driver for Tesco then all you need to do is wait for your bank balanced to turn into a telephone number and then you got the problem of how to spend it.
33% of lottery millionaires bought a new home, 23% a new car, 6% a horse but 97% shared their fortune with their family, 91% made a substantial donation to charity.
Finally you can forget the warning that money can't buy happiness as 99% of lottery millionaires winners disagreed and said that their win massively improved their happiness.
Even if you do all of the above and still don't win, you can have the warm inner glow in the knowledge that The UK Lottery has contributed over £37 billion to good causes so you may not be moving or driving around in a BMW but someone, somewhere benefited from your £2.

Special Guest Blogger: Sitting Bull

When i was a kid the only white thing all over our lands was snow but then along came the Europeans and screwed up everything.
I was named Jumping Badger at birth but that isn't a name to strike fear into my enemies so changed it to Sitting Bull which on reflection isn't much scarier, Leaping Wolf or Bounding Rattlesnake would have been better.
Within a few generations of the Europeans arrival, those of us who had not been wiped out were rounded up into reservations, and to think Americans complain today about people turning up from other countries and refuse to assimilate to their culture and threaten their way of life!! Man, that must really suck, oh wait..it does. 
If only we had thought of building a thumping great wall to keep them out.
As if that isn't bad enough the Americans then named their helicopters Apache after the native indigenous Indian tribes and armed them with Tomahawk Missiles although i bet General Custer wished he had one of those at the Battle of Little Bighorn, his Last Stand didn't see him do much standing, more him laying down and bleeding.  
Although we don't celebrate Columbus Day, we do have Indigenous Peoples' Day that celebrates and honours the Native Americans, to celebrate Columbus would be like the Poland celebrating Hitler's arrival in Warsaw although arguably he did use the Americans idea of rounding up and killing the natives or sticking them in camps.
They called it the New World but it wasn't new to us although to see what they have done to it, we certainly don't recognise it now.

Friday, 29 November 2019

Human DNA Shared With Other Things

Most of us have come a long way since the dark days when it was taught that God created all living things and made humans by piling up some dirt and blowing into it's nostril although there are some who will still argue that Adam and Eve was where it all began.
As unlikely as it seems, those people share 99.9% of the DNA with the rest of us which is only 3.9% more than we share with a Chimpanzee although their IQ's are much closer than that. 
We have known for a long time that we’re closely related to chimpanzees and other primates, but the National Human Genome Research Institute have a growing list of just how much genetic material we share with other things.
Gene sequencing reveals that although we are most closely related to primates, we are 95% identical to pigs, 90% to cats, 84% to dogs, 80% to cows, 75% identical to mice, 70% identical to worms, 69% to a platypus and 60% identical to a Chicken, Banana and a Fruit Fly which may make you think differently about that Ham sandwich you had for lunch.
Bees share 44% of human DNA and even a potato has 20% human in it which is almost half as much as a cabbage which shares 45% although the DNA of humans and lettuce is 16% identical.
It might be worth remembering the next time someone tries to question evolution or explain the fairness of our Capitalist system that of the 99.9% you are looking at, they are 46% cabbage and sometimes the percentages are higher, very much higher in the cases of Estate Agents, Insurance Salesmen and right wing politicians.

Tell Us About Your Ignorant, Illegitimate Kids Boris

Answering listeners’ questions on LBC, Johnson was brilliantly challenged by a caller about a Spectator article he wrote in which he blamed single mothers for producing 'a generation of ill-raised, ignorant, aggressive and illegitimate children'.
As the father of 5, 6 or 7 children, four children with his estranged wife and it is believed he has one or possibly more offspring from affairs, Johnson refused to give an answer, preferring to try and deflect the awkward question onto it being a Labour Party tactic to distract from the fundamental issue at the heart of this election but undeterred, the caller insisted that as a single mother herself,
she didn’t appreciate what he said about single mothers and 'Why are you happy to criticise people like me, when you refuse to discuss your family'?
His blustering, faltering answer was that 'you will find that the actual piece is saying the opposite of what is claimed' which is the same defence he made when he described Muslim women who wear a burqa look like a 'letterbox', called Black people 'pickaninnies with watermelon smiles' and referred to gay people as 'tank-topped bum boys'. 
It is hard to see how saying single mothers raise ignorant, aggressive and illegitimate children could mean anything other than he considers single mothers raise ignorant, aggressive and illegitimate children.
I can only assume that sometimes, married mothers raise ignorant and awful children also as Mrs Johnson seems to have done just that.

Thanks Emery, Now Go Get Pochettino

It can't come as a surprise to any Arsenal fan that Unai Emery has been handed his P45 following a run of seven games without a win and last nights awful 2-1 home defeat to Eintracht Frankfurt in the Europa League.
Wolves boss Nuno Espirito Santo is the early favourite to replace the 48-year-old Spaniard and other names being mentioned include former Arsenal players Patrick Viera and Mikel Arteta and the former Juventus manager Max Allegri and but i have my hopes for Mauricio Pochettino even though he was the Tottenham manager until last week.
Pochettino was great at Southampton and turned Tottenham into a halfway decent side and his style of play would be the perfect fit for Arsenal and he has a proven record in the Premier League unlike Viera, Arteta and Allegri.
Nuno has done excellent at Wolves, getting them into the Europa League, but Arsenal are a step up from Wolves where Europa League qualification is below expectations.
Whoever comes in will need to look at Arsenal's defence, a failing for both Wenger and Emery, and with the next three games looking on paper to be 'winnable', Norwich, Brighton and West Ham, this would be a good time to allow a gentle introduction to the Premier League for any new manager, or as gentle as it will get.
Whether Pochettino will even want to come to Arsenal considering the rivalry with Spurs is something to consider but it would be a missed opportunity if we didn't try and get him, a manager who seems a perfect fit for the Gunners and is available.