Will Hutton

I've just been reading Will Hutton's 'The State to Come'

Which written back in 1997 (before NuLabour won the election later that year)- shows that the big mess the Global economy is currently in has roots stretching way, way back. (But since Blair and Brown have only ever been Thatcherites in disguise - it's only to be expected.)

So I've been reading the other things he's written in the Guardian.

I've also come across this:

Edward J. Dodson / Review of: Boom Bust, by Fred Harrison.

Just a thought since most economists have been proven to be completely wrong by real life events over the decades - isn't it time we stopped paying them any credence? Shouldn't we now be lumping them together with the tarot card readers and astrologers and rune-readers and only taking anything they say with massive handfuls of salt?

Proving Moleskine Is Just A Style: The Piccadilly Notebook

As far as I know - Not yet available in the UK.

It's about time someone either took away Moleskine's crown - and/or Modo and Modo brought their prices down - and brought them down a lot.

Proving Moleskine Is Just A Style: The Piccadilly Notebook

Doctor Who monster maestro wants Nesbitt as next Time Lord - Coventry Telegraph - The Geek Files

"Mmmmm Ruari Mears" tasty.

sony ericsson pc suite

Yup - I get the annoying Capi_Worker module crashing nonsense...
here's a supposed solution - that I haven't got working yet. *sigh* Is my next phone going to have to be Nokia - simply because Sony-Ericsson are so far up their own arse they refuse to acknowledge and actually fix their dodgy software?

oh no - plot recycling

The latest episode of Sanctuary - warriors was set around an illegal fight club...

like erm... Torchwood : Combat.
Angel : The Ring.
Star Trek Voyager : Tsunkatse
Star Trek OS : The Gamesters of Triskelion

...I'm sure there are many others (if you know of any others - let me know in the comments). It's my least favourite plot ever - because it's so wretchedly limited.

Random bookmarking

I agree with this blog post from Mr Eugenides: Levelling the playing field

Missed this one back in November:
Bill for ID cards rises by £50m as Home Office unveils pilot scheme. Now - a couple of years or so back didn't the London School of Economics predict that the Government's costing for the scheme was wildly out of whack. Of course the Govt. pooh-poohed their warnings...

Beau Bo D'Or tag: benefits.

The brilliance of creative chaos.

now macs need virus protection too

Mmmmmmm - does this mean that Apple are going to go back and re-edit all their 'I'm a pc - and I'm a mac' adverts where they're boasting how macs never ever get viruses and trojans and what-not?

Welcome to Cloud cuckoo land UK

Er... hello. Apparently - there's this global financial crisis going on - the whole world - thanks in main part to the mass idiocy of the people who work at the top levels of the financial sector - is in recession. In the UK there are already various companies shedding large numbers of their workforce - if not going out of business altogether... economic experts are predicting that unemployment figures are set to grow to at least 2 million - very possibly more very soon... (and that never takes into account the real numbers of people who are really unwaged, such as those people subsisting on low wages and/or tax credits or inadequate pensions etc.) - and we're being warned this recession could last for quite some time. So against this background - the Government thinks it's the best time ever to introduce stringent Welfare reforms. Most of which only amount to punishing the unemployed and the sick if they don't get a job. With the end goal of eventually treating them as criminals by forcing them to do community work if they don't toe the line... this Government needs to think about changing it's name to the Slave-Labour party if it carries on in this vein.

It's always interesting to consider the various things the Government hasn't even considered to help people back into work (-or even that the whole work-life concept needs to be radically rethought - because it plainly is very broken). Oh, things like providing proper training schemes (currently only those people already in full employment can afford to pay for the education to gain decent qualifications) - or bringing back the student grant system (rather than the current loan system which only forces people into high levels of debt at the beginning of their careers. We might have cottoned on by now that high levels of personal debt is NOT a good thing) - reducing working hours by law ('work to live - not live to work') and -oh yes and doing various things that mean there are the businesses and companies etc. that people can have jobs in... (Because our Govt. still fails to grasp the simple concept that before we can ever have full employment - that there needs to be more than enough actual real jobs to go around than there are people) But all those things are expensive* and difficult - and it's all so much easier and simplier to blame the unemployed for being unemployed... (and that always goes down well with the sort of angry, mean-spirited, small-minded person who reads the sort of popular newspapers in this country. The sort that live in their own little vindictive fantasy worlds. Just read any comments feed on the websites of such papers and prepare to be horrified at the vitriol and bile these people can spew out.)

Related stuff:

...TUC general secretary Brendan Barber said: "This approach to welfare assumes a utopian world of unrestricted childcare and widely available jobs where only the lazy opt for life on the dole.

"The reality is very different. Thousands of people are joining the dole queue every day through no fault of their own."

"Urge lone parents into jobs. Just put away the big stick
Getting people employed is vital, but in a recession current welfare-to-work targets are impossible - and compulsion is crazy"**

[*Although it's always amazing what Governments CAN find the money for when they put their minds to it. The illegal invasion of a country on the whim of a US president? Well, that's open cheque-book time. Bailing out a load of banks and building societies - (and making sure the managers can keep their huge multi-million pound bonuses) the sky's the limit there... But Hospitals? Care homes? Nursing staff? Welfare payments for the poor... oh no - the cupboards bare then.]

[**For the life of me I can't see what's the idea behind forcing lone parent mothers into employment when most of their wages are only going to go paying for childcare! In fact - they might as well just pay them their benefits as normal and let them claim to be self-employed child carers.]

Pictured: The robot that can pull faces just like a human being

Working towards making ourselves redundant one step at a time...

Pictured: The robot that can pull faces just like a human being | Mail Online

(pity the video doesn't work any more.)