Black Flag News
2003/November
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RUGGER NEWS

England wins Rugby Union World Cup
– Aussies discombobulated to the max!

The flag of Olde EnglandWe could have put the match away in the first half. We could have won easily in regulation time despite the ref's eccentric, if not severely partial, awarding of penalties. But the team thought, "Nah! Let's wind the Aussie robots up a bit." So they left putting the match away until the last half-minute of the second period of extra time.
   Australia will now be closed for mourning for the next 231 years.
   p.s. The Aussie robots got beat. Ha! [Taunting. Fifteen-yard penalty. Ed.]

HOME NEWS

This Month's Big Conspiracy Theories

Mr. DeadlyArnold Schwarzenterminator
Out : IDSIn : Arnie
A. The transfer of power from Iain Deadly Smith to his successor was very carefully scripted for maximum drama, a maximum feel-good factor for the Conservative party and a maximum feel-bad factor for New Labour.
p.s. We'll wish Mr. Schwarzenberger all the best in his new role as leader of the Tories just as soon as he gets his ass out of California and over here, where he's needed.

B. The postal strike – what was that all about? Time off for the shirkers to do their Xmas shopping with their credit cards then 2 weeks' overtime to clear the backlog of mail and the credit card bill. Magic!

Average – is that bad or good?

Stockport, Romiley's near neighbour, is the 'most average' place in the UK, according to the Office of National Statistics. The conclusion came out of a study of the 2001 Census returns (what there was of them). Of course, the leader of the council responded with some rent-a-quote garbage about Stockport being an exceptional place. But no one expects a politician to be able to deal with simple facts.

X-rayed ScouserScousers are the country's leading collapsos

Liverpool city council is under siege by people who say they suffered injury after tripping over the city's uneven pavements. Most of the claims, however, prove to be bogus on investigation. Claims have come in from people who were in gaol on the day when they said they were assaulted by a Liverpool pavement. Others file an annual claim in nice time for a Christmas pay-out if they're successful. Whole familes lodge mass claims for gang trips at the same stretch of pavement. But hey, that's Scousers for you.
   The council received 4,000 demands for cash compensation in 2001, and over 80% of them were found to be bogus. 6,000 claims came in last year. Anticipating an even more bumper crop, the council has increased its highway injuries budget to £5.3million for this year.
   Birmingham, which has twice the population, expects to get by on a budget of just £4.6million and Manchester has set aside a mere £2million to cover the effects of hostile pavements – which comes as something as a surprise given that the city is a consistent winner of the Worst Pavements In The Country Award.

Spiderman David ChickHigh Entertainment

London seems to need a high-level entertainment. So outraged father David Chick took over from David Blaine when he completed his exercise in starving himself for 44 days in a plastic box. Unwilling to provide a target for egg-hurlers, Mr. Chick chose to protest about fathers' lack of access to their children by perching 150 feet up on a crane in Central London for a week dressed as Spiderman. Which gave the police a chance to bugger the capital's motorists around by closing all the roads near the crane. Why? Because they felt that there was a risk of Mr. Chick falling off the crane and causing damage to a passing vehicle. Pur-lease!

Rock the boat and you're history

The government intends to scrap the countryside qangos because they've been giving it too much grief. English Nature, in particular, has embarrassed Vice-Prez Bliar and his cohorts over genetically monstered crops as well as their plans for new roads, ports, airport extensions and reservoirs. So they're for the chop as soon as possible.

Michael Portaloo
Out on his ear: Portaloo
Michael Howard
The Boss : Howard
Portaloo Crashes & Burns

Caretaker Tory leader Michael Howard has called agitator and plotter Michael Portaloo's bluff by offering him a job. The man who believes that he is entitled to be the party leader, but who failed to convince anyone else of his fitness, chose not to prove that he's a lemon by taking the job. Even better, he will not be standing at the next general election. Mike is finding that pretending to be an MP clashes with serious career commitments in advertising, television and public speaking.
   Mr. Howard is believed to have taken the Portaloo problem to Tory leader in waiting Arnold Schwarzenberger, who told him to 'punk the sucker out' – a tactic which seems to have worked in spades.

waterfallWhose side is the bastard on? Not ours, that's for sure!

Get a water meter fitted and reduce your bill. The government has applied price caps to the water industry to stop bills going through the roof. Do you feel safer with those twin protections in place? Well, you shouldn't.
   The head stooge of Ofwat, the alleged regulator for the water industry, has admitted that he regularly lets the water companies bust through their price caps. And worse, if their sales of water go down through more economical use, putting water company profits in danger, the alleged regulator will let the companies put their prices up.
   So it looks like the poor old customers can rely on one thing – he's going to be clobbered from one direction or another.

London's taxi drivers have been unsuccessful in their attempt to have tricycle rickshaws, or trishaws, banned from the capital's streets. The cabbies wanted the seven trishaw firms to suffer the licence and regulation requirements enjoyed by black taxis. A High Court judge disagreed, ruling that the pedal-powered vehicles are not Hackney carriages.

Best Prez Bush Visit Quote:
it's "the greatest threat to life on this planet that we've ever seen"
Ken Livingstone, Mayor of London

Leylandii terrorists now liable to a £1,000 fine if they don't trim their monster conifers? Well, no, not till the end of 2004 as the Westminster Wonders don't like to rush themselves.

The Office of Fair Trading has told Barclays Bank to stop swindling their punters by advertising '0% interest forever' while really charging 17.9%.

streeetch limo
What you see ain't necessarily what you get

A recent undercover integrity check on the Advertising Standards Authority has turned up an interesting point of view. Posing as a member of the public, a researcher sent in a protest against an advert in a national daily newspaper. The substance of the ASA's verdict was that it's okay to use a picture which exaggerates the size and/or quality of goods on offer.
   In other words, it's okay for an advertiser to show a picture of a Rolls-Royce and supply a Mini because the advert shows a car – and a car is exactly what the customer gets.
   Of course, this is the standard philosophy of most of our advertisers; and also the present government, come to think of it; but we didn't expect the ASA to endorse it quite so readily.
Advertising Double-Standards AgencyThe Advertising Double-Standards Association has taken a pop at McDonalds over an advert showing a spud in one of their fries containers. Their beef is that 'fries' also contain other things, including a sugar which caramelizes when cooked to give them a brown colour. But applying the ASA's wonky standards: the advert shows potato and potato is the majority ingredient of fries, so the ASA ruling on the advert is rejected as 'inconsistent with established parameters'.

The Chief AnarchistHail to the Chief Anarchist

BlackFlag News offers its greetings to Prez Bush on the occasion of his state visit to our small country. We are pleased to welcome someone who is doing so much to spread anarchy and confusion around the world. And we bet he's quite pleased at having to spend just a couple of hours with Vice-Prez Bliar during the 3-day trip.
   Another safe bet is that the Prez didn't offer to pay for replacing windows at Buck House and having steel-reinforced walls installed around his guest room. Full marks to the Queen for pointing out that they wouldn't be much use against a suicide bomber crashing through the roof. To make him feel safe on his next visit, maybe we can arrange for Mr. Prez to be put up in an underground bunker in the middle of Dartmoor.

Daily Mirror inturder faces spell up the river

Even though the death penalty still applies to commoners who lark about in a royal palace, Mirror employee Ryan Parry probably won't face the hangman for blagging his way into Buck House with a dodgy CV. But he does face severe chastisement for 'gaining a pecuniary advantage through deception' and his gross breach of a confidentiality commitment. In fact, Parry could spend 10 years in gaol if he receives maximum sentences consecutively.
   On a lighter note, Palace staff have admitted taking great delight in arranging 'scandals' for the 'investigator' to uncover. Police officers sneaked away from sentry points as he approached. Staff left doors unguarded and they made a point of not checking luggage for bombs and guns while Mr. Parry was around. They also pretended to ignore visitors who looked like they could be up to no good.
   One prankster gave Mr. Parry some Tupperware boxes of cereal to place on the Queen's breakfast table – but he was careful to replace the plastic boxes with the usual bone china before Her Majesty arrived. Even the Queen joined in, making comments about Vice-Prez Bliar's dodgy ticker while the spy was lurking around.
   Mr. Parry is hoping to spill the beans on life backstage at Downing Street when he has paid his debt to society for his current escapade.

Unsympathetic times for the yob tendency

The yob who went to gaol for decapitating Mrs. Thatcher's statue has lost an appeal against his conviction for causing criminal damage. 'Comedy terrorist' Aaron Barschak has received similar short shrift from the courts. He thought that he could create a Turner Prize entry out of chucking red paint over artist Jake Chapman, some of his work and the gallery housing both of them. A judge at Oxford decided that Mr. Barschak is just a yob and a vandal, and gave him 28 days inside.
   Mr. Chapman and his brother Dinos have achieved a measure of notoriety by vandalizing worthless prints from exhausted engraving plates for a series of works by Goya.

Imposing a ban on hunting with hounds breaches EU human rights laws – which Vice-Prez Bliar wished on us with such enthusiasm – if the ban deprives people of their living. And anyone so deprived is entitled to sue the government for compensation. So that's another shot in the vice-presidential foot! [And another hand in the taxpayer's pocket. Ed.]

The Sports Minister is for the chop. The blighter dared to moan about being dragged home from his freebie in Australia to prop up Vice-Prez Bliar's crumbling regime in the Commons.

In addition to a dodgy ticker, Vice-Prez Bliar seems to be suffering from Himmler's Disease. The sometime Reichsführer had to employ masseur Felix Kersten to control his agonizing stomach cramps. Perhaps the Vice-Prez should consider renewing Carole's Downing Street pass to let her perform the same office. And if she can have the same benign influence on her boss that Kersten had – well, things can only get better.

Last Concorde over Bristol Suspension BridgeLast-built Concorde flies home

The last Concorde off the production line made the last ever flight of the mark to return to Filton, near Bristol, on the 26th of this month. The aircraft will go on show there next spring. Other members of the BA fleet are to be found in Manchester, New York, Seattle and the Grantley Adams airport on Barbados.
   To make sure that the aircraft will never fly again, the remaining spare parts for the BA Concorde fleet will be sold by auction on 2003/12/01.

New Labour unveils its 'Big Conversation' ...
... which turned out to be a classic Bliarism:

  • a chance for the Vice-Prez to be photographed with ordinary mortals while patronizing them;
  • the party hangers-on talking at people rather than with them;
  • some shameful overacting by the Vice-Prez for the meeja's benefit; and
  • the customers just making up the numbers.

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MUGGER NEWS

Another dodgy promise from The Mugger

The bloodsucking MuggerChancellor Gordy Broon has promised no more tax rises before the next election. How's he going to manage that? Simple, he's just going to call them something else if he doesn't try to slide them in as more of his Stealth Taxes.
   The Mugger may be all smiles now that he's benefited from his dodgy scheme to slide £250 of taxpayer's money to his newborn kid but the arch meddler will soon lose interest in playing the family card. After all, he knows he's going to be evicted from the Treasury after the next election and he can feel the tinkering time running out.

What do the European Commission (see Euromeddler News below) and the British Chancellor of the Exchequer have in common? Both were given the Black Spot by their respective auditors. The Bliar regime's inspectors have discovered that the Inland Revenue has overpaid around £2billion over the last 3 years while maladministering The Mugger's botched tax credits scheme. "Mr. Brown's problem," a financial expert commented, "is that he inherited a fundamentally sound system from the Tories but he couldn't resist meddling with it. Which is why we've gone from Prudence to Pig's Ear."

The European Commission intends to haul the UK government into its kangaroo court as part of a plan to impose a common company tax system on its fief. The charge will be treaty violation. The Mugger says that he will oppose the notion vigorously. But will anyone in Europe listen?

TELECOMS NEWS

Wilful ignorance is the best defence

phone picBT is ripping its customers off good and proper, especially on international calls. BT's charges per minute for calls to the USA, Australia and China are 14p, 22p and 23p respectively. Its rival 18866 charges just 1p/minute for each of these countries. BT calls to Russia cost 50p/minute while 18866 calls cost just 2p/minute.
   When challenged about the vast price difference, a BT spokesman said, "We do not understand the comparison with other companies." Get out of that, you punters!

Meanwhile, it's not just BT who are 'at it'

  • 40% of directory inquiries customers get the wrong info
  • the cost of using directory inquires post New Labour's privatization has gone up, not down
  • staff at 118 118 deliberately give punters wrong information to get them off the line so that they can increase bonuses based on the number of calls handled
  • many companies connect punters without telling them that this 'service' is a rip-off, and
  • many companies don't give the punter the number and ring off when the punter opts not to be connected.
But don't worry – Oftel says everything is okay, so it must be.

HOME SECRETARY NEWS

One way or another, they've got you!

BlackFlag News ID cardAfter getting us used to Stealth Taxes, Vice-Prez Bliar's government is giving us Stealth ID Cards. Home Secretary Blunk's latest Big Wheeze is to build them into passports and driving licences, which will cost at least £35 more than the current price as they will become multi-purpose documents. Anyone who doesn't drive and who isn't planning to go aboard will be permitted to buy a straight ID card for thirty-five quid (or more if The Mugger thinks he can get away with it). This state of affairs will endure until about 2013.
   At this point, anyone who doesn't have an ID card in one form or another will be marched to a cash-point – at gun-point, if necessary – and forced to withdraw enough dosh to pay for a compulsory ID card and the escort service. The customer will then be marched to the nearest documentation center and required to surrender appropriate biometric data (fingerprints and/or iris data).
   After a bedding-in period of up to two years, an ID card will have to be produced by all those seeking to use the NHS, get a job in the UK, change their job, draw any social security benefit (including pensions), travel on public transport, gain access to any public service or building (including libraries, post offices, banks, pubs, supermarkets, etc.), or do just about anything but stay at home and wait to croak. Except in Scotland, of course, which is a separate country with a separate Parliament and which has to be different from the English.
   Note: bogus asylum seekers and all illegal entrants will be exempt from the requirement to own an official ID card if they have already purchased a convincing replica from their local back-street dealer.

Blunk welcomes workers

The Home Secretary is offering 'essential entrant' status to illegals with jobs. The philosophy behind this radical policy rethink is that anyone who is prepared to work once they've crept into the country is welcome. Anyone who isn't inclined to work will be evicted to make room for the workers – and that includes idle native Brits. You have been warned, you back-sliders!
The wheels have come off this plan after only a couple of days. The Metropolitan Police have pointed out to the Home Office that one of the 'essential entrants' granted indefinite leave to stay in the UK is a sub-teenage bogus refugee, who directs a gang of even younger pickpockets, who prey on tourists at Buckingham Palace and other popular destinations.
   The scheme has now been put on hold for a re-think

Blunk is planning to send Iraqi Kurds home to 'rebuild their country'. He promises that this scheme will have more success than the campaign to repatriate Afghans. As just 0.769% of them went back where they came from, old Blunk won't have to strain himself.

Muggings were up 20% in London during the Bush visit as the police were diverted away from the job they're supposed to do.

Blunk promises massive cuts in legal aid for bogus asylum seekers

The legal profession is up in arms over this decision, which will cost them a large amount of 'champagne money'. Accordingly, they are threatening a massive demonstration to bring the heart of London to a standstill. They are confident that the British public will rally to their side in the face of this threat to their sumptuous lifestyle.
   "It is unreasonable to expect us to tighten our belts just to make the Home Secretary more popular," a spokesperson for the asylum industry told BlackFlag News. "We will not be deprived," she added with devastating confidence.

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EUROMEDDLER NEWS

European Commission identifies major threat to world peace (but keeps quiet about it)

The New EU Flag
The New EU Flag - the Triple Cross
A survey conducted across the 15 EU nations has identified Israel as the country perceived to be the greatest threat to world peace. The regime led by war criminal and suspected fraudster Ariel Sharon easily overtopped the likes of North Korea, the USA, Iraq, France, Zimbabwe, Afghanistan and Iran as the world's most prolific trouble-maker.
   500 people from each EU country were asked to pick the worst offender from a list of 15 troublesome nations. According to leaks from the unpublished report on the poll, around 60% of the respondents went for Israel. The conclusion can be interpreted as a natural reation to Israel's attempts to have anti-semitism redefined to include protests against atrocities perpetrated by, or on behalf of, the state of Israel.

"Kilts? They're frocks, aren't they?" says the EU

The EU statistical agency, Eurostat, has been chucking its weight around again. It sent out forms to Scotland's kiltmakers and demanded that they fill in details of how many kilts they had sold in the box provided for details of sales of women's skirts. Patrick McGroarty, director of Caledonian Highland Dress Manufacturers in Perthshire, reported that the Eurojobsworths had the timerity to threaten him with a massive fine if he ignored their form.
   The Scottish Executive delivered a spot of ass-kicking to the UK Office of National Statistics (which acts as Eurostat's agent in the UK) and to Eurostat itself. After over a month of messing about, the form will be redrafted with a box which acknowledges that the kilt is menswear.
   Mr. McGroarty later commented that while he had no problem with providing statistical information, he saw no point in Eurostat's asking a question and failing to provide a box for the answer. He might also have added that the threats of financial violence were over the top, but he was too polite to do so.
   p.s. Eurostat, isn't that the outfit which made millions of euros of taxpayers' money vanished? [see BlackFlag News for July, 2003] Or has 'sleazebuster' Neil Kinnock been able to sweep everything under his carpet and cover up this particular scandal?

"Hands off the booze-cruisers!" says the EU

The European Commission has issued a stern warning to Vice-Prez Bliar over the tactics waged by his Customs & Excise Department against booze-cruisers. Confiscation of drink, tobacco and even vehicles if the victim oversteps the Revenue Department's purely arbitary limits, which have no legal status, is over the top. If the petty tyrants fail to shape up, the British government faces being hauled in front of the Euro-court on a charge of breaching the EU's rules on free movement of goods and cross-border shopping.

Crooks continue to prosper in Europe

The European Union's auditors have refused to accept the 9th straight set of dodgy annual accounts. The Prodi regime has failed to stop the fraudsters and 'sleazebuster' Neil Kinnock is still sitting on his hands, which must be getting quite flat by now.
   Spain, Italy, Greece & Portugal are all cheating over olive oil subsidies; the Greek agriculture ministry is up to its eyebrows in a cotton fraud; an enterprising British farmer is claiming set-aside on a 'farm' with a map reference in the middle of the North Sea; Portugal and Italy are running livestock scams – and we're not even going to get started on what the French are up to.

Whose EU is it anyway?

The EU's finance ministers have agreed not to impose financial penalties on France and Germany for ignoring the eurozone Stability Pact. The European Commission is threatening a legal challenge to the decision, but will this toothless pussycat really do anything? Probably not.

FOREIGN NEWS

Tiger!More tigers in Texas than India – official

Following the rescue of 24 Bengal tigers from a back garden 'private zoo' in New Jersey and their transfer to a sanctuary in Texas, the official tiger population of the Lone Star State has climbed above India's. The animals were rescued from filthy, cramped conditions imposed by owner Joan Byron-Masarek, who did a runner when the authorities in Jacksonville, NJ, decided to close her down. It is estimated that up to 10,000 tigers remain captive in American back yards and basements, which is twice the wild population.

Remember, Remember, the Ninth of November

The soon to vanish regime in the DDR allowed free passage through its Berlin Wall on this day in 1989, and the demolition job on the wall began the following day. A 14th anniversary survey has estimated that if all the souvenir bits of the Berlin Wall were recycled into a new wall of the same height and thickness as the original, then it would circle the entire city 2¼ times.

Kaboom!Israel chooses glasnost' on Weapons of Mass Destruction

The state of Israel astounded its neighbours in the first week of this month with a full and frank disclosure of its Weapons of Mass Destruction and the nation's plans for their use. For 2 days, a weapons testing facility broadcast clear, unencoded TV pictures via satellite to the whole Middle East. The military details shared with Israel's neighbours included a live account of a missile test, details of launch codes and discussions of what Israel has in the way of WoMD and which neighbour will be the recipient of which weapon.
   It is not known whether the television broadcasts were the result of a monumental cock up or part of a propaganda campaign aimed at intimidating Israel's neighbours.
   p.s. The missile test was a bit of a flop, which could be an attempt to lull enemies into a sense of false security.
   p.p.s. There are no plans for guided tours of Israel's concentration camp and torture experimentation centre near Arara.

Buran liftoffRemember, Remember, Fifteenth of November

The first, and only, flight of the Soviet space shuttle Buran ("Snowstorm" in Russian) took place on this day in 1988. Unmanned, as the life support system had not been installed, Buran was launched at 3:00 GMT from Baikonur cosmodrome on the Energiya booster. The flight ended at 6:25 GMT, after two orbits of the Earth, and the vehicle landed successfully at Tyuratum, a first-class aerodrome 12 km from the launch pad. Then the useless bunch of Commies running the USSR cut the programme's budget to nothing and cancelled it in 1993.

Welcome back to the Jungle

The Cincinnati Bengals have grotted all over the Kansas City Chiefs' hopes of a perfect season. The former 'Bungles' went 5-5 after their 19-24 home victory over KC in week 11 of the American Crunch season; and they might just be heading for the playoffs as unaccustomed champions of their division!

D.A. takes revenge on 'World's Greatest Entertainer'

Santa Barbara, CA, District Attorney Tommy Sned is hoping to grab a ton of election-steering publicity out of charging Michael Jackson with molesting a 12-year-old boy. Mr. Jackson's legal representative can see another attempt at extortion timed to co-incide with an album release. Mr. Jackson is known to have had a row with the boy's mother and experts have pointed out the possibility of False Memory Syndrome at work, or even Implanted Memory Syndrome.
   Mr. Sned is believed to have been searching for an opportunity to get even with the singer since being lampooned in one of Mr. Jackson's items of musical entertainment. Sned's antics with the press around the arrest and booking phases certainly expose the objectivity of his investigation and his professional standards to severe doubt.
Mr. Sned has been required to apologize for making 'inappropriate and unprofessional' remarks, including calling the singer 'Whacko Jacko', and doing things which would have made his late mother ashamed of him.

WAR NEWS

Scotland Yard lets the customers look at the Prez

Screw Blair
Screw Iraq
Prez Bush is coming over here on a state visit. Apparently, he thinks being photographed talking to the Queen will help his re-election campaign. Which might almost be a good thing if his opponent is the appalling Hilary Clinton. Anyhow, the visit is viewed as a security nightmare by the US Secret Service, which wanted to stop all vehicle movement inside the M25 ring during the visit.
   That plan has been booted into touch by the Brits. But the police have let the Yanks know that if they feel like stomping on any of the Froggie and other Euro-agitators, who are expected to come over here to try to hijack the inevitable protest demos, then the Yard will turn a couple of blind eyes.
   Just a thought, but maybe the Secret Service will put someone in a Saddam Hussein mask on a crane in the centre of London. That will guarantee that the capital's jobsworth senior police officers will close every road for miles around!

Another invasion from the USA

Stinky, giant American bullfrogs are here and murdering British wildlife. Their import was banned by the European Commission in 1987 but rogue traders have continued to sneak them into the country. They grow to five times the size of native frogs and people keep dumping their exotic pets in the wild when their smell becomes too much to endure. The bullfrogs eat other frogs, birds, fish and snakes, and they wreak havoc if allowed to roam free.

Skull and crossbonesDutch try to wipe out UK potato crop

Seed potatoes infected with ring rot (the potato version of foot & mouth disease) have been supplied to a Welsh farm by a Dutch firm. The Welsh enterprise, which supplies seed potatoes internationally, is not entitled to compensation under EU rules for the loss of business and the cost of a removal and sterilization operation. War clouds are hovering over Europe again as the British government considers its response to this act of biological terrorism.

"Why are people protesting about the Iraq war? Don't they know it ended months ago?"

"I know why Scotland lost six-nil to Holland. They were wearing white shirts and they thought they were England."

Just what they need!

The British government is to spend £152,000 of taxpayer's money on sending two 'gender experts' to Iraq for 6 months. Vice-Prez Bliar has been assured by his ministers that a lot of the trouble in Iraq is caused by people not knowing which sex they are. Hence the decision to send in the British experts to tell them.

Prez Bush spent Thanksgiving in Iraq. The appalling Hilary Clinton, meanwhile, did Afghanistan.

A punch-up in the making?

No fisticuffs yet at the EU foreign ministers' summit on the constitution, but it was a close-run thing. The French and the Germans are in trouble for riding roughshod over the stability pact; Spain and Poland don't want their voting strength cut; and Jack Straw is reserving the right to veto the whole thing. Which is probably not a bad idea because France and Germany are sure to rewrite the constitution for their own benefit after Vice-Prez Bliar has signed us up to it.

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BODY NEWS

Big Brother is looking inside your head!

Bad Brain!Brain doctors at Dartmouth College, New Hampshire, USA, reckon that they can identify racialists with the aid of an MRI scanner. If certain parts of the brain become active when the victim is shown images of other racial types, then the Yanks reckon that they've found a racialist. Which raises interesting possibilities.
   If racial partiality is a medical condition – like the flu, insanity or homosexual partiality – then the victim isn't to blame for it. And anyone who has a go at someone because of it is liable to receive smug disapproval from the people who count, and also liable to be hauled into court to pay vast compensation for injured feelings.
   Ain't life grand?

Fat is Fabulous – from the Treasury point of view

The real reason for the recent explosion in obesity was dragged into the light of day this month. Fatties have a reduced life expectancy and the government is encouraging couch potatoism so that its fat customers will croak before they can demand a pension.

Guinness Is Good For You! – it's official

A pint of Guinness a day is good for the heart as it gives the blood anti-clotting properties.
   [So will customers be advised not to cut themselves while shaving after drinking their Guinness? Ed.]
   But chocolate doesn't do you any good, so Cadbury's are going to put warnings on the wrappers of their chocolate, sweets and fizzy drinks before they are obliged to do so by the Fatness Police. It is not yet clear whether they will have just written warnings like fag packets – Chocolate Kills style of thing – or they will go the whole hog and show clogged arteries and grotesquely obese victims of chocolate gluttony.

Big is dangerous north of the border

Scots are ballooning so much that they are getting too huge for NHS equipment. Cancer patients weighing more than 20-25 stones are too big to fit into MRI and ultrasound scanners, which makes diagnosing their condition a serious problem.
   Some private hospitals are tackling this problem by installing larger scanners bought in the United States, home of spectacular fatness, and reinforcing beds, operating tables, trollies, etc. 'Experts' are predicting that 25% of the population will be clinically obese by 2010. Looks like the XL clinics are set to clean up if the NHS doesn't pick up the baton.

Heads & Tails, you lose!

Stay out in the sun and you get skin cancer. Stay out of the sun and you get cancer through vitamin D shortage. What's the answer? Shoot ourselves? Shoot the 'experts'? Well, we could always stay indoors watching telly and eat lots of margarine for the vitamin D.

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SPACE NEWS

Hope springs eternal for the Space Spivs

NEAR on ErosThere's an outfit called the Archimedes Institute which lets people file claims to objects in outer space. Various spivs have claimed parts (or all) of the Moon and they sell bits of lunar real estate, with appropriate fancy certificates, to mug punters. So when the spacecraft NEAR made the first ever landing on an asteroid on 2001/02/12, NASA was not surprised to receive a bill for $20.00 to cover 100 years' parking on 433 Eros.
   Gregory Nemitz, founder of Orbital Development (http://www.orbdev.com) filed a claim on Eros with the Archimedes Institute on 2000/03/03. NASA has responded to his demands for the cash by pointing out that Orbital Development 'has not established a valid or enforceable claim to the asteroid'. Even so, two and a half years later, the claim has found a US court willing to hear it.
   The Archimedes Institute seeks to make law for outer space but it has failed to obtain official recognition from NASA, the UN or anyone who counts; especially after it allowed Virgiliu Pop, a PhD Candidate at the University of Glasgow specializing in extraterrestrial property rights, to claim the Sun on 2001/04/28.
   Of course, given the weird nature of the American courts, it's always possible that NASA will be ordered to pay the 20 bucks. If so, they should send Mr. Nemitz a bill for $30 as a fee for providing a security presence on 433 Eros and deterring alien trespassers.

This Month's Garbage

The Garbage Labour MP Diane Abbott sending her kid to a private school while continuing to moan about their very existence.

Fatty Clarke, Mr. Portaloo and all the other Tory dead-beats pretending that they had a shot at the leadership. 

 Lord Chief Justice Woolfe, the burglar's friend, accusing Vice-Prez Bliar of clearing the ground for a British Hitler by wrecking the constitution.

Pratty HewittUK call centres are transferring jobs abroad 'as poor India needs help', says Trade Secretary Praticia Hewitt. 

 British Red Cross bans Christmas and all 'offensive' Christian images to avoid upsetting 'minority faiths'.

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