|The nation faints with shock!|
After being hammered in the first Test, the England cricket team managed to beat the Aussies by a whole 2 runs in the 2nd Test. But they couldn't quite escape from a draw in the third Test.
In the 4th Test, they did their level best but they couldn't quite manage to avoid falling over the winning line! Needing just 129 to win after making the Aussies follow on, 7 wickets went down to achieve a score which England had made with the loss of just one wicket in their first innings.
It's almost as if the scriptwriter for the series is trying to cause as many English heart attacks as he can manage. But anyway, the English team now goes into the final Test with a 2-1 lead and needing only a draw to claim the Ashes for the first time since 1987.
Attention, Al Qaida!
He's enjoying his freebie holiday
So blowing up Downing Street
would be a VERY BAD IDEA.
|The Sharons in trouble again|
Omri Sharon, son of Israel's war criminal prime minister, has been charged with corruption in connection with his father's campaign to lead the Likud party in 1999. He is alleged to have forged documents and committed perjury while setting up fictitious companies to hide illegal campaign contributions.
Ariel Sharon, his dad, has adopted a 'Not me, Gov!' approach to the whole thing. The leadership campaign, he insists was nothing to do with him. He didn't run it, he didn't have anything to do with the finances and all he did was benefit from it but at a very great distance.
As the Sharons have a history of evading punishment for their crimes, no one is expecting them to suffer too much inconvenience. Their last brush with the law involved Ariel Sharon helping an Israeli businessman with his plans to develop a resort on a Greek island. His son got a marketing director's job out of the deal despite having no previous experience.
But in June 2004, Israel's attorney general decided there was 'insufficient evidence' of corruption and the Sharons did no wrong because they are too thick to spot a bribe!
Harry Greene, professor of ecology and evolutionary biology at Cornell University, has come up with a plan called 'Pleistocene re-wilding' as a new approach to conservation.
During the Pleistocene era (1.8 million to 10,000 years ago), the American cheetah hunted the antelope-like pronghorn in the deserts of the American Southwest, which was also home to a camel-like animal. The arrival of Man about 13,000 ago pushed them into extinction, which left serious gaps in the ecosystem. Professor Greene would like to use modern equivalents of the extinct animals to plug these gaps.
He would also like to add wild horses and asses, Bactrian camels, Asian and African elephants and lions to the mix. The plan is intended to provide eco-tourism and land-management jobs for the struggling economies of the Great Plains and the American Southwest, as well as offering new habitats to species endangered elsewhere in the world.
Meanwhile, in the old world, a couple of wealthy Arabs are planning to offer the dinosaur experience to tourists in Dubai. They have a vision of a leisure complex containing over 100 'animatronic' dinosaurs of all types.
Spain's answer to Jaws!
Bathers on Spain's Mediterranean coast are suffering from the attentions of a plague of jelly fish. They're big, they're mean, the effects of their stings can last over 48 hours and the Spanish Red Cross is treating hundreds of assaulted swimmers instead of the usual handful. Predictably, global warming is getting the blame as an easy alternative to finding out the real cause of the invasion.
|What you get from the Net|
'Meds' bought on the Internet, e.g. V!agra & Cia!is, may not be great value for money, despite the glowing testimonials of the spammers selling them. The pills have probably been mixed in a non-sterile cement mixer with brick dust as the binder and boric acid (which can cause gastric problems) as a filler. Worse, they are likely to be coated with floor wax to make them shine.
As for the colouring materials used to give bogus pills the traditional colours of genuine ones, a typical way of producing yellow pills is to use the highway polymer paint used for yellow lines!
Alternative medicine exposed
The secret of alternative medicines is out they're all a con job. It's not the 'water and nothing but water' in homeopathic medicines which 'cures' people, it's the psychological effect of someone taking an interest in the patient.
That, in some cases, kicks the body's natural defence mechanisms into more effective battle against the intruding aliment. But it works only if the customer believes it will work. The sheer certainty of practitioners of alternative medicine also helps.
The number of people dying from alcohol-related diseases is up 20% on the figure for 2000. New Labour is hoping to get an even bigger increase in the number of people drinking themselves to death when its 24-hour drinking laws come into force in November.
Note: The 24-hour drinking culture is part of a long-term strategy to solve the pensions crisis created by New Labour's Stealth Taxes. The Big Idea is for their customers to croak long before they become eligible for a pension.
New Labour's latest revenue-raising scheme is to confiscate people's houses when they croak. The way the system works is that New Labour shifts responsibilities from central government to local authorities without providing extra cash to pay for the extra services required. As a consequence, Council Tax goes up and people on low incomes can't afford to pay both their C-Tax and their bills for food, energy, phones, etc.
When the poor person complains that he/she can't afford the increased C-Tax, he/she is presented with the option of not paying any Council Tax during his/her lifetime providing the council can recover it, with interest from the sale of the house after his/her death.
So if the victim of this scam is unable to afford to drink himself/herself to death, then the deferred C-Tax bill will swallow up the value of their house when it is sold and another piece of the private sector will move into the public sector under New Labour's stealth plan to nationalize all property.
The Labour party also plans to extend its property confiscation plans to dwellings left unoccupied for 6 months or more. They will be handed over to the local council, which will be able to do them up and rent them out. The owner will be able to recover the property only after repaying any costs the council can think of. No mention of a share in the rent, though.
Why your Council Tax bill will be going up again . . .
The government set the fee for issuing the new-rules drinks licence too low to cover council costs for processing the applications. The government also made the forms excessively complicated, which made applicants put off filling them in. The government also demanded payment with the application, which gave applicants an incentive to file them as close to the deadline as possible.
As a result of all this, councils have been forced to hire extra staff and put put their existing licensing staff on overtime. The extra cost to local councils of processing applications for a new style drinks licence will be £20-30 million for the next 2 years. And as the government doesn't want to pay out the money, it will have to come from C-Taxpayers.
Thank, Scotch Gordon, for another Stealth Tax.
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This outstanding novel was voted Book of the 20th Century
Images of a new planet have been discovered in photographs take on Oct. 21, 2003 with the Samuel Oschin Telescope at the Palomar Observatory near San Diego, Calif. The presence of an object moving relative to the stars in its background was not spotted until Jan. 8, 2005. The object is definitely a planet but its size has not yet been established. It is at least as big as Pluto, which has a diameter of 2,2500 km., but it cannot be seen with NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope, which means that its diameter has to be less than about 3,000 km.
Telescopes of increasing power have led to the discovery of other large planetoids at the fringes of the Solar System in the last few years. They include 2003 EL61 ('smaller than Pluto', announced 2005/07/28), Sedna (1,700 km., 2004), Quaoar (1,280 km, 2002), Ixion (760 km, 2001) and Varuna (900 km, 2000). The latest discovery, catalogued as 2003 UB313, is the first to have a size larger than Pluto, which is under attack by people who want it downgraded from planet status.
The discoverers of the new planet [right : an artist's impression of the planet and the Sun], Drs. Mike Brown, Chad Trujillo and David Rabinowitz, have given their discovery the unofficial name Xena (yes, the Warrior Princess lady on the telly). They are now waiting for the International Astronomical Union to make its decision on an official name.
Does the shuttle need to mind the gap?
Things take a hell of a long time in space. Astronaut Stephen Robinson took just a couple of minutes to pull a couple of dislodged gap-fillers from between thermal tiles on the shuttle Discovery's belly. But the whole job of getting him there for the 2-minute job, and back, took an amazing 6 hours! And that doesn't include the time spent improvising a hacksaw in case the strips of filler didn't want to be pulled out by hand or with forceps.
Curiously, what no one seems to be discussing is what happens next. If Mr. Robinson has removed 2 gap-fillers, he must have created 2 gaps. So what happen to these gaps when the shuttle re-enters the atmosphere and the thermal tiles on either side of them start heating up?
Anyhow, the good news is that NASA has decided it can ignore the risk from a loose thermal blanket just above the 'D' in Discovery. A 20-gramme lump of the insulation is officially unlikely to fly off during re-entry and cause catastrophic damage to the shuttle's tail, so another space walk is unnecessary.
And while all the fun and games with loose bits have been going on, the astronauts have had to find time to unload 15 tons of supplies for the International Space Station and take aboard 13 tons of waste, junk and obsolete equipment. Life is certainly all go in space!
The landing of shuttle mission STS 114 was postponed for 24 hours because of bad weather at Cape Canaveral but Discovery eventually made it back to the ground in one piece at Edwards Air Force Base in California. The landing was made at what looked like the middle of the night presumably so that the TV audience would see nothing much if there was a crash.
Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter on its way
NASA is struggling along with parts bought for the lowest tender price, which could explain why it seems to be stuck with a batch of duff fuel gauges. One of them kept the shuttle Discovery grounded for a few days. MRO suffered from the same problem. But it's on its way at last heading for a rendezvous with the Great Mars Gremlin next year.
NASA has been accused of crippling the 'Return To Flight' process after the loss of the shuttle Columbia by setting unrealistic launch targets, which gave engineers a matter of months to come up with a solution to a problem when the task of making the space shuttle safer dragged on for over 2 years.
Someone seems to have booted the false optimists up the backside and the next launch of Atlantis has been put back from "September or maybe November" until next March to give everyone a chance to make sure no more big lumps of foam drop off the external tank.
|The Nation Trembles . . .|
Terrorists are running riot in our country and the police overtime bill is through the roof and heading for the stratosphere as they look for a third gang of mad bombers. But hey, it's the holiday season. So the prime monster and the home & foreign secs. are all off on holiday. Leaving who in charge?
Old 'Two Jags', the nation's favourite figure of fun, is temping in the boss's office.
"Gord help us all," an anxious nation cries.
[But she probably won't. Ed.]
Last month, the Home Office's Bureau of Guesswork Statistics produced a figure of 570,000 for the number of illegal migrants in Britain. But they left out 300,000 failed asylum seekers and offspring of illegals. So the current guesstimate has been revised to 870,000 illegals. Which is 2% of the population!!!
The government has applied for a Dictionary Restraining Order on the word "shameful". In future, the word can be used only in reference to New Labour's policies or executive decisions.
New Labour does 'Iraq dossier' job on ID cards
The ID card pudding was 'hugely over-egged', a stooge from the Home Office has been forced to admit. He also admitted that ID cards won't stop terrorism, fraud, abuse of public services and illegal migration. The confession is seen as an attack on Mr. D. Blunk, the previous Home Sec., who was sacked for fiddling his expenses something else which ID cards won't prevent.
The government has become severely worried by the price of biometric ID cards. Having told everyone that they will cost £35 (with a passport thrown in for free) they have watched their own estimate of the price creep up to £93 while those who still retain some contact with the real world have calculated that the true cost will be around £300 each.
But the main problem for the government is that most people think the whole 'ID card project' has been just a way to pay millions of taxpayers' cash to the right sort of consultants, and the customers now see the cards as a 'plastic poll tax'.
The Highway Agency has been sitting on a report which shows that speed cameras make no significant difference to road safety and their primary function is to raise revenue by stealth.
What does he have to sweat about this month?
1. Promising to do something about Islamic clerics who preach murder of British citizens when everyone knows he has a track record of talking big but doing nothing.
2. Accusations that he and the Culture Sec. Tessa Jowell did an under-the-counter dirty deal with the casino industry then lied to Parliament about it.
3. Coming up with an explanation of what he really meant when he said terrorist supporters should be charged with treason now that New Labour has gone totally floppy on dealing with treacherous Islamics.
4. Coming up with a credible explanation for why his holiday was 'top secret' one minute and not a secret the next.
New Labour covers up failure of sex offender tracking scheme
Former Home Sec David Blunkett described a tracking system for paedophiles as 'prison without bars'. The system was supposed to monitor their whereabouts 24/7 using satellites and a mobile phone. But technical problems have turned the scheme into 'prison without prison'. Clouds, leafy trees and buildings all block signals from the system and make it highly unreliable. But present Home Sec., Charlie Clark, would prefer the electorate not to know that, hence the botched attempt at a cover-up.
Freedom of Disinformation
The big new idea of the moment is a 'flat tax' a single tax rate for everyone instead of the increasing rates favoured by the Labour party. But a briefing paper has been released under the Freedom of Information Act in an attempt to make people think that the Treasury's officials have found the idea wanting.
Only a leak has shown that the document contained only the arguments against the flat tax and almost everything in its favour was cut out. Which comes as no surprise when one recalls that the man in charge of the Treasure is Scotch Gordon, who is notorious for his tinkering with the tax system and who has a talent for making things go disastrously wrong e.g. his tax credits scheme and his fief's handling of income tax and national insurance.
Dishonesty is as firmly entrenched as ever in New Labour's rotten heart.
Making the streets unsafer
The number of under-18s prosecuted for drunken disorder rose by 25% between 1996 and 2003. New Labour expects to drive the figure even higher when 24-hour drinking becomes compulsory.
p.s. Hywel Francis, a Welsh Labour MP who voted for 24-hour drinking at every opportunity, is objecting to the pub near his London flat opening for an extra hour once a month. Mr. Francis has become used to being called a hypocrite.
PM in Barbados Official!
Some people just have to be the centre of attention. Our current prime minister, a serial victim of Attention-Seeking Disorder, made himself a figure of fun when he tried to hijack the Queen Mother's funeral and make himself the main focus of that event. He has just done it again in Barbados his top-secret freebie holiday location.
By trying to take over the local VJ-Day celebrations, he has smeared egg all over the faces of the New Labour jobsworths who made such a song and dance about the 'security requirements' of keeping his holiday destination a secret. And, as with the Queen Mum's funeral fiasco, he will collect another well-deserved, good kicking for his ASD-fuelled vanity. So why did he do it?
The answer to that question is fairly obvious. If he attended an official function, his holiday becomes official business and he will feel entitled to claim his travel expenses from the taxpayer for performing prime ministerial duties on their behalf. Because Antonio B. Liar is a greedy bastard as well as an attention-seeker.
A Labour party 'hard-hitter', who walked out of the Cabinet over the prime minister's decision to take the country to war in Iraq on the basis of manufactured evidence, has died at 59. Robin Cook suffered from the twin disadvantages of being clever and believing in things; neither being a trait calculated to endear him to the proponents of the 'New Labour project'.
He was a natural choice for a Cabinet post when the Labour party finally made itself electable. [Or the Tories made themselves totally unelectable. Ed.] His slide to the back benches began when he tried to introduce an 'ethical dimension' to the Foreign Office; a concept alien to sleazy, valueless New Labour.
Robin Cook was well aware that he was handicapped by his looks and he had something of a gargoyle image in the media. But those who saw him in the flesh generally concluded that he was much more human than the images broadcast by newspapers and television suggested.
He achieved a measure of notoriety when he was bounced into the decision to dump his wife of many years for his secretary. He had hopes of a return to ministerial office under the next Labour prime minister [If there is one, Ed.] but he was fated to die in a Scottish wilderness with a legacy of 'might have beens'.
The character actor who was big enough to do 'defiant Cockney' has died at 77. Mr. Booth had a long theatrical career but non-theatre-goers will remember him for his performances in films like Zulu and Robbery, and TV shows such as Minder and Bergerac. He starred in the West End musical Fings Ain't Wot They Used To Be, went on to Shakespeare, returned to the West End for the flop Robin Hood musical Twang!, which was known to the critics as Plunk!, and went back to the classics of theatre drama. He was a RADA contemporary of the likes of Peter O'Toole, Alan Bates and Richard Harris.
The creator of the beast which revolutionized pop music in the Sixties has died at 71. The first analog sound synthesizers were able to produce music of sorts if the performer was clever enough to set up the complex plug boards. Engineer Dr. Moog's versions, introduced in the early Sixties, were easier to play using conventional keyboards.
The series of albums created by Walter Carlos in the late Sixties/early Seventies became the Moog synthesizer's showcase. They included versions of J.S. Bach's music and also the score (1972) of the Stanley Kubrick film of Anthony Burgess' classic short novel A Clockwork Orange.
Progressive rock bands such as Emerson, Lake & Palmer, Pink Floyd and Yes considered their Moogs essential accessories. Even so, the synthesizer dropped out of vogue in the early Seventies, but it came back into fashion in the 1990s and it is still around in the 21st Century.
The Scotland Yard detective who played a key role in breaking criminal gangs using the 'supergrass' system has died at 81. The future detective chief superintendent served with the squad which tracked down the Great Train Robbers of 1963, including Ronnie Biggs, who escaped from prison to seek refuge in Brazil. Slipper of the Yard helped to form the Robbery Squad, which rolled up a great many bank robbers in the 1970s and 1980s.
He won libel damages of £50,000 and an apology from the BBC when he was portrayed as a clueless blunderer in "The Great Paper Chase" a TV film about his attempt to bring Biggs home from Brazil. In retirement, he was in much demand as a commentator and police expert, and he had the satisfaction of seeing Biggs return to the UK to be locked up when he became too old and sick to survive in exile.
|Occasional wild weather is nothing new|
Last month's tornado in Birmingham wasn't an exclusive product of global warming, despite the claims of self-styled experts. It ranked T4 on the scale created by the Tornado & Storm Research Organization and Britain can expect 1-3 of these every year. Britain also gets the occasional severe tornado of rating of T7/T8 with a wind speed of over 200 mph. We had 3 of them in the 20th Century in 1913, 1937 and 1954 so we're well overdue for another 'Big One'. And a big gush of wind from the 'experts' after it strikes, of course.
Ice on the move
Glaciers and the ice cap are melting in the Arctic Circle but the water released by the great melt, blamed on global warming (what else?) isn't raising sea levels all that much. Why not? Because snowfall has increased at the south pole, and the volume of sea ice in the Antarctic's Southern Ocean is increasing, leaving global sea levels much the same.
The effect of the mass transfer from north pole to south pole is expected to make the Earth bottom-heavy. A likely long-term consequence of the shift is a reduction in the planet's axial tilt and a smoothing out of the seasons, so that the climate will become pretty much the same all year round. [But only over a period of thousands of years. Ed.]
A while ago, it was fashionable to hurl around a theory that global warming would result in the Gulf Stream switching off and Britain being covered by glaciers in winter. Now, the wheel has turned full circle and a climate scientist had concluded from his computer models that the effect of global warming will be to drive more warm water north to make the British Isles a nice, warm place all year round.
The US Republican party is gunning for the people who pretend that climate change is something that they can reverse rather than something to which the human race should adapt. Prez Bush has clearly received enough bungs from his nation's polluters to be on the side of the adapters. As a result, academic 'changers' are having their funding looked at very closely as an intimidation tactic.
New Orleans a crazy place to live?
Parts of the city are 10 feet below sea level and they need all-year-round protection from the mighty Mississippi river on one side and Lake Pontchartrain on the other, especially when it rains. Then throw in the fact that the city is liable to be hit by the hurricanes which steam into the Gulf of Mexico every year as an alternative to wrecking bits of Florida.
So why do people live in New Orleans and why should they be encouraged to go on living there by repairing the damage wrought by Hurricane Katrina? Would not the $14 billion needed to fix up the city be better spent on rehousing these lunatics elsewhere?
[But given the lemming instincts of some people, they'd probably head for Kansas and get their next home flattened by a tornado. Ed.]
|Big on talk, small on doing|
This month marks the 1st anniversary of Scotch Gordon's promise to sack 104,000 useless civil service pen-pushers by 2008. In fact, the civil service has GROWN by 150,000 bodies since he made the promise. [And this guy thinks he's fit to be P.M.? Ed.] So when P.M. Antonio B. Liar promises to deport all Islamic trouble-makers, what's the betting the country will be overflowing with them in a couple of years' time?
The Human Riots Act? What's that all about?
Vote Labour, die young
New Labour has succeeded in widening the life expectancy gap between rich and poor. Rich men are living just 2% longer than paupers compared to 1997, but the gap has risen to 5% for rich women.
Duplication, duplication, duplication
Scotland Yard is on course for wasting £2 million on repeating the French investigation into the death of Princess Di in Paris in the late 20th Century.
End of an era
Britain's last prison hulk, HMP Weare, has evicted its last inmates and closed down after 8 years' loyal service. The ship's future remains uncertain. Plans include taking it to London as a home for terrorist suspects, mothballing it and reopening it at its present mooring spot; Portland Port, Dorset; as a visitor attraction offering 'The New Labour Prison Experience' to paying customers.
After putting up with Irish terrorists for hundreds of years, we have more than enough laws to tackle Islamofascists and their world-domination agenda.
All that is lacking is the will to use them.
Will-writing agencies have noted a 15% upturn in business since the July terrorist attacks in London. It's an ill wind, and all that . . .
New Labour Is Dead
Trade union militancy from the 20th Century is back in fashion. Heathrow unions leapt out on illegal sympathy strikes and British Airways, having suffered a loss of £40 million and untold damage to its reputation, did nothing to recoup its losses. And total silence for what passes for the government.
Is this another thrilling part of the Antonio B. Liar legacy?
Channel Five has come up with a new wheeze in the Reality TV line. It sent a team to Loch Ness in September last year. The gang spent a fortnight driving a 16 foot animatronics monster around to entertain the tourists and then asking them what they saw. The result of the project Loch Ness Monster: The Ultimate Experiment will get its pre-repeat showing on Sunday, 28th August at 19:30 hours.
Comment under licence?
Uric Smiff, leader of the Non-Moslem Parliament of Great Britain, has come up with a solution of sorts to the problem of Islamofascism. He proposes a voluntary tax of 12% on the incomes and businesses of all followers of Islam in the British Isles. The money will go into a trust fund, which will be used to pay compensation to the victims of Islamofascism, and their relatives, and to repair the damage caused by terrorist Weapons of Local Destruction.
Mr. Smiff also proposes an Extremism Licence for the likes of Yaqub Zaki, deputy leader of the unelected 'Moslem Parliament of Great Britain', who said recently that he would be very happy if there was a terrorist attack on Downing Street. The licence will be subject to an issuing fee of £1,000. Thereafter, a straight fee of £10,000 per statement, paid to the above trust fund, will soothe damaged British feelings while letting extremists rant to the limit of their supporters' pockets.
Similarly, Inayat Bunglawala, media sec. of the Moslem Council of Great Britain, sent out hundreds of emails praising Osama bin Laden between the East African embassy bombings and the World Trade Centre attack in 2001. A fee of £100 per email would allow Mr. Bunglawala to express himself and simultaneously compensate the victims of the terrorists receiving his praise.
Has Mr. Smiff come up with a happy solution for all parties? Could be!
Piano Man hoax exposed
A 20-year-old Bavarian man has ended his freebie holiday at a British psychiatric hospital. He appeared at Sheerness, Kent, 19 weeks ago in a 'confused' condition with no means of identification. After fooling doctors for 5 months, and creating a totally undeserved reputation as a piano virtuoso, he has gone home. The hospital trust concerned is now thinking of sending him a bill for the £40,000 of British taxpayers' cash which he wasted.
TheGuardian continues to foster New Labour dumbing down
The latest episode of this sorry obligation involves a silly story about 'the dawn of the new millennium' being greeted by the largest number of suicides in a single day on record for England and Wales. One slight problem, however. The story quotes statistics for January 1st, 2000 when everyone else knows that the 3rd millennium began on January 1st, 2001. Oh, dear!
Shock-horror! Buy our product!
A firm selling cleaning kits for computers and their accessories has found that the average keyboard hosts more bacteria than a toilet seat. Somehow, no one is surprised by that sort of news coming from that sort of source.
PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT
Crooks In Action
The European Union is promising to do something about the criminals who send out emails about bogus lottery wins and extract cash from the gullible as 'administration fees' (but don't hold your breath).
In the meantime, as a public service, Jenson Farrago is offering access to his collection of examples of lottery, phishing and other email spam.
CLICK HERE to find out what miracles they offer.
|The French deport them, our lot encourages them.|
The French government has evicted an Algerian rabble-rouser for having the cheek to say that Moslems should start a holy war against France.
The chances are that Mr. Reda Ameuroud's next destination will be Londonistan, where he can say what he likes and collect state benefits at the same time.
The French put the interests of their country before the alleged human rights of foreign trouble-makers. We have the reverse system in Britain, possibly because the co-tenant of 10 Downing Street, the Right-On Sherri B. Liar, makes a whole heap of cash out of the human rights industry.
Nice to know we were right all along
Anyone who has ever had dealings with them will know that the Foreign Office tends to think that its job is to smooth a path for foreigners and trample on any Brits who get in the way. And, shock horror, an independent report commissioned by that prime waste of space Jack Straw has confirmed it! The F.O. is riddled with incompetents and £66 million per year could be saved right away by getting rid of 10% of the staff. After that would come the hard slog of tackling a culture of waste, sloth and endless duplication of tasks to make it look like people have jobs to do.
Not surprisingly, the conclusions of the investigation had to emerge via a leak.
Dumb, dumb, dumb!
The paintings of Edvard Munch are terrifically popular in his native Norway and highly prized by all those fortunate enough to own one. So much so that the nation's thieves devote a massive amount of effort to collecting them.
But the pair of masked intruders who strolled off with three pictures from the Hotel Continental in Oslo were out of luck. All they got were copies as the hotel can no longer risk hanging its twelve originals Munch masterpieces in public view.
[Either that or they can't afford the insurance premiums after the Munch Museum was robbed last year. Ed.]
Beating the system
A Californian company has created a smokeless cigarette for rich people who want to get around the world's many smoking bans. At £17 for a packet of 20, you have to be a serious nicotine addict to go in for 'Acros Smokeless Cigarettes'.
p.s. A Swiss company is about to market the 'NicStic'; another system for smokeless smoking.
Send for International Rescue
The Royal Navy and a band of civilian experts successfully freed a trapped Russian minisub. The stricken vessel was caught up in discarded fishing nets and spy gear for 76 hours on the bed of the Pacific off the Kamchatka peninsula. Russia's own rescue minisub system was unable to help out as it was 'working on a commercial contract at the time'.
"Only a sun lounger which has been hired can be deemed to have been reserved," a German lawyer has concluded. So British tourists are entitled to ignore German towels parked on public domain loungers.
Okay, now shop till you drop!
Good news for the 276 people living on Tristan Da Cunha, 'the most remote inhabited island on Earth'. The Royal Mail has assigned them the postcode of TDCU 1ZZ after they complained that they were unable to shop online without one.
Happy birthday, Hulkster!
It's Hulk Hogan's birthday this month, but can ANYONE believe that old bloke is only 52? [Round the head, he's 52! Ed.]
Iran continues down nuclear road
The new government in Iran has decided that it is duty-bound to balance the threat in the Middle East from nuclear-armed, rogue states with a fundamentalist regime. So it has nobly turned down the chance to buy fuel-grade uranium from the EU at a knock-down price in favour of developing its own enrichment facilities.
Fat American Syndrome
The US Federal Aviation Authority has been obliged to increase the official weight of the standard traveller by 8% of men and 18% for women. Airlines need to be able to estimate the weight of their human cargo to adjust the aircraft's centre of gravity, fuel requirement and take-off speed. And if they don't get it right, aircraft can and do crash on take-off.
Despite resistance from insurgents as well as the inmates, Israel seems to be doing quite a good job of clearing its squatter camps from the Gaza Strip, which has been under illegal occupation for 38 years. We understand that the Mugabe Destruction Co. has been called in to demolish the empty squatter camps.
Mandy bogs it up
Millions of garments were ordered, paid for and shipped from China before the EU anti-dumping regulations came into force. But they will be stuck in warehouses at ports while shops and stores run out of stock. That's another nice mess that EU protectionism on behalf of the French textile industry, corrupt officials at Brussels and the dabbling of Trade Commissioner Peter Mandelson have gotten us into.
"Crisis? What crisis?" says Mandy.
Back from his holiday, the EU trade commissioner has denied being responsible for the mess. "Everything will be sorted in a matter of minutes," he assured a disbelieving world. [Yeah, like that's going to happen. Ed.]
Next on the hit-list for the meddlers in Brussels . . .
Shoes imported from China could soon be stacked in warehouses at ports beside all the clothing held there thanks to EU protectionism in general and Mandy's bungling in particular.
|This edition of BlackFlag News was compiled in accordance with official 10 Downing Street guidelines on accuracy and veracity.|
| ||Created for Romiley Anarchists' League by workers in revolt against oppression.|
Sole © RAL, August 2005.