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On This Day…10.05

By ATWadmin On May 10th, 2007 at 6:35 am

1307 – Scottish King Robert the Bruce defeats at English cavalry army at the Battle of Loudem Hill in Ayrshire.

1796 – Napoleon Bonaparte’s Army of Italy defeats the Austrians at the Battle of Lodi near Milan. More than 2,000 Austrian troops are killed or wounded.

1798 – British navigator and explorer George Vancouver. Sailed around the world with Captain James Cook to Australia, New Zealand and the West Coast of America. Gives his name to Vancouver Island and the Canadian capital of British Columbia.

1940 – British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain resigns. Winston Churchill forms a coalition wartime Government saying: " I have nothing to offer but blood, toil, tears and sweat".

1941 – World War II: in Britain, the worst night of the Blitz – 550 German bombers drop 100,000 bombs on London. More than 1500 people are killed and many thousands more injured. Among the badly damaged buildings – the House of Commons at Westminster.

 

 

When congestion becomes a commodity

By ATWadmin On May 10th, 2007 at 12:00 am

London is like a city under seige or martial law if you’re a driver. Everywhere barriers across roads, tank-trap style traffic-calming measures, the interminable and eerily deserted roadworks resembling makeshift militia checkpoints. At any time the authorities can paralyse London’s roads and with increasing regularity they are doing just that. Right now, past midnight, there are thousands of people caught in traffic gridlock north and south of the river. If you listen carefully you can hear Mayor Livingstone and his cronies laughing their arses off as a plan comes together.

The routes across the Thames are few and far between once you pass Tower Bridge heading East. There’s the Rotherhithe Tunnel (closed at night), the Blackwall Tunnel (closed tonight and all today due to a spillage and generally as reliable as a meth-smoking babysitter), then there is the Woolwich ferry (closed at night) and finally, many miles away the Dartford Tunnel. East London needs at least two more crossings, but this would ease a problem the authorities are purposefully creating, so will never happen.

“The problem is caused by too much traffic” the brain-washed, dead-eyed INGSOC acolytes will tell you. Not the constant roadworks, not the bus lanes, not the blocked roads, not the traffic lights every thirty yards. “The problem” they say “is too many cars. The problem is you. The roads would be fine if people didn’t keep driving cars on them.” This mantra absolves them from responsibility for the huge inconvenience caused by their studied actions and inactions, for only when the road system is completely ruined will people abandon their cars.

Greenwich council, with the backing of King Rat, is conducting a “survey” of congestion with a mind to introduce their own congestion tax. They are doing this at a time when Greenwich High Street is closed to traffic, and two other major roadworks are in effect between Greenwich and the Blackwall Tunnel. As such, any dainty straw that flutters onto the camel’s back brings immediate collapse. Here, as elsewhere in London, the plan of sabotage is clear. The authorities are systematically destroying our road network to create congestion and bring in new taxes. Paranoid? As Hunter S Thompson said, “the paranoids were right.”

 

 

Liberals and the Arts

By ATWadmin On May 9th, 2007 at 8:19 pm

The nominees for the ridiculous charade that is the Turner Prize have been announced, and the favourite is Mark Wallinger, whose great contribution to the world of art has been the recreation of the vast anti-war demonstration/eyesore established in Parliament Square by the deranged far-leftist Brian Haw.

There is much that one might wish to say about modern "art". I certainly cannot see how such rubbish can be considered art, under any meaningful definition of the word.

However, Wallinger’s pathetic piece is in this respect no more awful than most other Turner nominees, so I would have avoided commenting on it, but for one thing: am I the only one who finds incredibly annoying the manner in which leftists in the art world will stop at nothing to promote their views? One cannot go to the theatre nowadays without being subjected to some liberal, anti-war/anti-capitalist/anti-Christian rant, masquerading as "challenging, thought-provoking theatre". Now, it seems, you cannot set foot in an art gallery without being confronted with similar leftist rubbish. Another good reason for withdrawing all public funding from the arts, I think.

(Cross-posted at my own blog

……they grind slowly, but also exceedingly small

By ATWadmin On May 9th, 2007 at 5:23 pm

On March 28th this year, I posted on my own blog a commemorative piece on a murder which took place some eighteen months ago, and the purpose was to remind readers of the manner of the investigation surrounding his death, as opposed to the huge publicity surrounding another, but seemingly much higher-profile death in Liverpool!

I heard the really good news this afternoon that the killer is up on trial at last, and hope that, if found guilty of this killing, he will be sentenced to life behind bars! The bad news of course is that in Britain, life usually means some eight or nine years in comfortable surroundings; t.v. on demand and ‘human rights’ to the fore! Instead of a just and harsh punishment for taking this man’s life, this clown will be out in eight, or even less if the current trends are seen to come true. With the new Sec. State for Justice, (Charlie Faulkner to his buddies) at the helm, the average is gonna’ come down, because the one thing that Nu Labour doesn’t like is to hold crims in the slammer for long periods, as this is usually seen as a prerogative of the old-time Tory Party!

So remember Richard Whelan, and my apologies to the Metropolitan Police for any remarks made in anger about their speed in finding this murderer, and hence bringing him to the limited amount of Justice still available in this pleasant land!

 

Neptune rising

By ATWadmin On May 9th, 2007 at 3:16 pm

World Climate Report, the world’s longest running climate change blog, reports on an article recently published in Geophysical Research Letters which seems to have slipped by the MSM.

Global warming has hit Neptune!!

Both Mars and Neptune have now been observed to be warming as the sun gets warmer – and we’re supposed to believe that the earth is any different? Something of an inconvenient truth for a certain Al Gore, but it’s kind of ironic that the observation of a gaseous lump has revealed the fallacies behind the observations of another gaseous lump.

Thinking the unthinkable

By ATWadmin On May 9th, 2007 at 2:23 pm

The Telegraph reports that doctors leaders are calling for government to be cut out of managing the NHS after a decade of NuLabour’s "incoherent and contradictory" reforms.

The BMA said ministers should be prevented from "constant political dabbling" in the day-to-day running of the health service following a decade of "incoherent and contradictory" reforms.

What would one expect from Labour who are, let’s face it, renowned for thinking that more money and more centralisation is the answer to everything. The BMA go on to suggest that what is needed is an independent "governing board" to control the day to day running of the NHS.

Currently, the NHS costs the taxpayer something in the region of £90 BILLION each year. That works out at roughly £1500 for every man, woman and child in Britain. Not every taxpayer – every single person. For the average family of four that’s around £6000 each year. Any idea what sort of level of private health insurance six grand would buy you? Well, I have fairly comprehensive insurance for myself, Mrs Stan and the 2 Ministans and I can assure you it costs a darn sight less than £6000 a year.

When I think about the NHS and private versus public the key question I focus on is, what do we want from the NHS? Is the purpose of the NHS to provide a source of employment for state employees – or is it supposed to be to deliver free health care at the point of delivery?

Sounds like a daft question, but is it? After all, if the point was simply to deliver free health care at the point of delivery then why does it matter whether it comes from public or private provision? Much of the NHS could be run more efficiently and more effectively if it were in private hands – particularly routine operations. Not only that, but in private hospitals operations are revenue generating – so they don’t get cancelled or cut. In the public sector, performing operations costs money and so they are the first thing to get cut when there is a budget squeeze – for whatever reason.

If we really want to have a quality health care system for the 21st century then we have to start thinking the unthinkable – and that means dismantling and disentangling the NHS from the public sector, privatising it where we can, streamlining it where we can not. Other countries manage far higher standards of health care than Britain without the need for a giant state owned organisation – and the harsh truth is that the NHS never was and never will be affordable. The golden days of the NHS hark back to a time when the infrastructure of the organisation was that which existed before the NHS came into being in 1948. It has been undergoing a systematic decline ever since that time despite more and more money being directed into it.

He who pays the piper …

By ATWadmin On May 9th, 2007 at 1:39 pm

Following on from David’s post about the number of spoiled papers in the election to the Scottish parliament, I thought this little gem of wisdom would be quite appropriate.

It is enough that the people know there was an election. The people who cast the votes decide nothing. The people who count the votes decide everything.

Josef Stalin

 

 

HAS SCOTLAND THE MOST STUPID ELECTORATE IN THE WORLD?

By ATWadmin On May 9th, 2007 at 11:16 am

Alright, let’s try this one! Has Scotland got the worlds most stupid electorate?

The reason I ask this superficially offensive question is that it has been revealed today that the number of rejected votes in the Scottish elections was much higher than previously thought. It had been estimated that about 100,000 ballots had been discounted, mainly because of errors in the way they were completed. Figures obtained from returning officers show the final tally of rejected votes was almost 142,000.  This is a MASSIVE figure and makes a farce out of some results where the winning margin was less than the rejected votes! I also read that the greatest level of rejected ballots coincided with some of the "poorest parts" of Scotland. So, are poor Scots just stupid or are the politicians who designed this system even stupider?

GEORGE DAWSON

By ATWadmin On May 9th, 2007 at 10:52 am

GeorgeDawson.gifJust read that the DUP MLA George Dawson has died after a brief illness. I knew George well, and am very sorry to hear this news.  He died a young man – only 45 years – and I would like to pass on my condolences  to his family circle.

I took part in several meetings with George over the years and whilst we may not have agreed on everything in recent years, I am so sorry to hear this news. RIP George.

An introduction

By ATWadmin On May 9th, 2007 at 10:49 am

Hello.


I’m Stan. For the last few months I have been posting on my own blog, Ranting Stan, on various subjects that interest or annoy me.


I’m delighted and somewhat bemused to have been invited by David to join the ATW team. Delighted, because it is a strong team with excellent writers posting eloquent and thought-provoking articles – bemused, because i’m not sure that my ramblings are up to the quality this site deserves. But, hey – what the heck!


I was wondering what I could write that would give you some idea about my personal philosophy. The truth is, DumbJon over on the excellent House of Dumb, encapsulated it in a single paragraph more adroitly than I could ever do. So, with apologies to Jon for shamelessly pinching his words – here it is …


Liberals disparage traditional morality as irrational and self-evidently absurd, but where’s the evidence for their lifestyle ? Civilisation has been around long enough now for us to have a pretty good idea what works and what doesn’t. In that sense, traditional morality is just the accumulated wisdom of ages on how to run a society. It’s the post-1960s consensus that’s arbitrary and unsupported. Are we really living in the one moment of human history where everything that we’ve ever known about successful cultures no longer applies ?


That pretty well sums up my own views. I’m a conservative – small c, not a Cameron supporting Tory – who believes that we, as in this generation, do not own this nation but are merely the caretakers of it. As such we have a responsibility to maintain and look after it until the time comes when we can hand over the reins to the next generation. It is our responsibility to look after something immeasurably precious and to ensure that what we hand over is an ordered and secure nation. As a conservative I believe that successful change is achieved not by huge leaps in the dark on untried and untested radical theories, but by small steps that are designed and planned in such a way as not to cause irrevocable damage and that are reversible if they are found to be failing.


A big thanks to David for inviting me to join ATW and giving me the chance to annoy the hell out of liberals as much as I can.