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Fucking Americans!

In a decade when religious idiocy has been noticeably prevalent, things seem to go from bad to worse.  Yet again, I’m placing the blame squarely at the hands of Americans, or more accurately, a select group of Americans to whom sense and thought are alien concepts.

My scorn this week is aimed at Pastor Terry Jones of ‘International Burn a Koran day’ fame.  He and his braindead followers appear to have no time for tolerance and understanding and instead have opted for one of America’s proudest traditions – the burning of books.

As a lifelong and confirmed non-religious person – I’ve grown tired of the phrase atheist – I’m not about to go singing the praises of Islam, Christianity or anything else, it’s all lies anyway and I challenge you to prove me wrong.  However, I am fully aware of and understand the fact that many misguided people around the world choose to believe in imaginary friends that live in the sky and I’m happy to leave them to their beliefs as long as they don’t impinge on my life or cause anybody any harm.

This does not seem to be the way of Terry Jones who thinks that rather than build bridges, the sensible thing to do would be to burn the holy book of Muslims in a widely publicised and plainly offensive show of moronic, misplaced, right-wing solidarity.

Although Mr Jones has since called off his book burning stunt, his actions have no doubt already caused more trouble than they ever should have done.  Although – we are told – young, stupid Muslims around the globe need little impetus to become radicalised these days, it’s surely damaging to foreign relations and its image abroad, that Americans should act as the book-burning hypocrites we’ve always suspected they are.

Anyway, for now disaster seems to have been averted, but it’s hard to tell exactly what effect this latest farce is going to have in the long run.  Here’s hoping for the spread of global anti-religious sentiment sooner rather than later!

How easy is it to spot mental illness in the upper echelons of government?  King George III and Henry VI were both pretty crazy and don’t even get me started on Margaret Thatcher.

It seems to me that the next name to be added to the madness list should be Tony Blair, a man who appears to live in a universe entirely of his own construction.  He is a man to whom reality and fantasy are indistinguishable, as evidenced by his claims that he “stretched the truth past breaking point” during peace talks for Northern Ireland.  Of course I’m not saying that the end doesn’t justify the means, but it’s the frequency with which Blair has used this trick to get what he wants.  Know what I mean?

When I think of Tony Blair these days, I’m so often reminded of Armando Iannucci’s Time Trumpet, in which a portrayal of a senile Blair wanders around downtown Baghdad muttering nonsense to himself – or possibly the voices.  It could well happen.

The worst thing about Blair though is the damage he did to the Labour party.  His ‘third way’ rubbish notwithstanding, his actions – often led by his liberal attitude towards the truth – caused damage to the Labour Party that many people are unlikely to forget in a long time.

Although he followed in the footsteps of Neil Kinnock, Blair’s (and Brown’s let’s not forget) ‘New Labour’ vision completely removed any left-wing sentiment from the Parliamentary Labour Party.  A long time in the political wilderness may do that a desperate party, but Blair doesn’t seem to see the failings of the New Labour project.

Even now, after he and his ideas have fallen wildly out of favour with the public and the Labour Party, he insists on calling for a continuation of middle-right Labour party, despite a recent poll suggesting the vast number of people would oppose Labour if that were the case.

It is not for a man who is completely out of touch with Britain in 2010 to decide how his former, battered and bruised party should be run, especially when all but him see the disaster his “stretching the truth” resulted in.

Maybe when Tony was in power, he was just preparing for his life as a writer.  Perhaps at the point at which he decided “we have become an author”, he realised that he was pretty good at writing fiction and his time in Downing Street provided a groundswell of inspiration.

Kids’ll do anything for Dairylea.  In fact, they’ll even run drugs if they can just their grubby little mitts on the sweet, sweet taste of that delicious dairy spread.  Think I’m making it up?  Well, just check out their latest advert.

Yes that’s right, having just witnessed the most recent cheese based branding exercise, I can reveal that drug running is on the agenda.  This is evidenced by the choice of song for the advert: Alright by Supergrass.  As any Supergrass fan like myself can tell you, the song begins with the lines; “We are young, we run green, keep our teeth nice and clean”.  The bit about being young, that’s fine, it’s the second bit that bothers me.

It’d be entirely understandable if some marketing drone had listened to the first seven seconds of Alright and thought “oh yeah, this is perfect for advertising a cheese spread aimed at children and people who don’t care for Philadelphia”.  If they’d actually bothered to pay attention though, they’d realise the cheeky, brazen drug reference in the song.

I know that kids these days are little fuckers – as they’ve always been – but I doubt they have enough time to sell skunk amid their busy schedule of getting in my way and generally poisoning the world with their idiocy.

Maybe the next time that Dairylea make an advert, I’d recommend they choose a more appropriate soundtrack and – more importantly – not rape one of my favourite songs. Why not use something like Jamie Cullum? That’s about as cheesy as it fucking gets.

What ever happened to Legz Akimbo theatre company?  They would certainly not look out of place at this year’s Edinburgh festival, I’m sure of that.  Actually, Legz Akimbo would be a fuckload more entertaining.  My question is; why on earth somebody would want – let alone pay – to see a bunch of talentless ponces mincing about on a tiny stage with no real purpose or statement of intent truly baffles me.

I appreciate theatre’s cultural significance and contribution, but it’s fair to say that the batch at this year’s Edinburgh festival are clearly void of any ability whatsoever.

However, there is something even worse than the awful acts plying their even more awful trade.  That something is the televised abomination of BBC2′s The Review Show.

As anybody reading this website – even in passing – can tell, I am a man with no hang-ups about expressing opinions, although I do it for love, not money.  The same cannot be said of the middle-class bozos waffling on about whatever topics are on the agenda this week.  Who gives a shit about what they think?*  It wouldn’t be so bad if they weren’t all trying to outdo each other with the poly-syllabic words they like to make up, oh, hang on, yes it would.

The fact of the matter is, I am perfectly capable of making up my own mind, as are you and virtually everybody else.  Nobody needs Kirsty Wark and her gang of pretentious tossers to tell them whether or not something is any good and, based on the footage from the Edinburgh festival, it certainly isn’t.

What do I know though?  I wasn’t there.  Maybe a bunch of Flemish teenagers performing an incredibly contrived play about teenage life a la Skins is really important work.  Maybe it isn’t.  And just maybe, a middle-aged balding beardy tosspot knows more about being young than I do and he truly understands the value of this performance.  Maybe he doesn’t.

So what’s my point?  Well, as usual, it’s debatable as to whether or not I have one, but if I did, I’d say it’s probably got something to do with middle-aged middle-class people not being the fucking oracle and their opinions being ultimately just as worthless as mine.  It’s probably also got something to do with a lot of stuff that gets on at Edinburgh being total dross that nobody would ordinarily go and see.  Although I suppose they get paid to do this.

*Don’t fucking tell me about being a hypocrite, I’m fully aware of what I do.  It’s how I get my kicks.

Upper-class cunts.  As with any conservative government, naturally the ones at the top are always going to be aristocratic twats with no real sense of how most people live.  Call me Dave is of course, no exception, although he likes to pretend he’s a regular guy because he doesn’t always fasten the top button on his shirt and he once spoke to a plumber.

And what better way to prove that’s he’s just like you and me, than by naming his newborn baby daughter Florence Rose Endellion Cameron.  I mean, I know it’ll look incredibly dated in ten years time, but it’s sooo en vogue to call your offspring Endellion these days, everybody’s doing it.  How wonderfully common.

Of course we are all in this together and the Camerons’ choice of baby name says a lot about their connection to the British public.  It’s just a relief that we’ve got an ordinary bloke in charge and not some typical toff toss-pot calling the shots.

Anyway, I must be off now, I have to go and tend to Tabatha Elizabeth Beatrice Fortesque-Smythe III, I suppose Au Pairs can’t be expected to do all the work.

Ever wondered exactly why humanity is the worst thing to happen to Earth?  Then look no further.  That’s right, it’s the return of everybody’s favourite cephalopod; Paul, the ‘psychic’ octopus.

The football world cup nonsense was enough, but now, the idiotic worship of a fucking octopus has become much, much worse.  I’ll tell you, I breathed a sigh of relief when it was ‘retired’ in July and assumed nothing would ever be heard of this idiocy ever again.  It would appear that I was wrong.

Now the octopus is ‘predicting’ that England will be the host nation of the 2018 football world cup (I’m booking my ticket out of here if it happens) and – this is the worst part – has now been signed to a book and film deal.  Can anybody else see a problem with this?

At what point did people surrender their collective ability to think?  Paul is a fucking octopus, a creature with roughly the same level of intelligence of a cat.  I know what some people might be saying at this point – “oh, that’s pretty smart”, well no, it isn’t, cats are morons and so are you.  Much like cats, octopuses don’t understand anything that humans do and certainly don’t have the ability or awareness required to predict future events.  In fact, an octopus wouldn’t even be able to understand the difference between regional flags or colours.

But it seems to me that the real problem here is people.  The octopus, psychic or otherwise, has absolutely no awareness of what’s happening in the world, nor the shrieking, hysterical duncery that surrounds its every move.   It’s people, who are willing to accept and/or believe that the octopus A. Gives a shit and B. Is capable of knowing what the football world cup is.

According to the BBC “Former England star John Barnes said: “Paul becoming an official ambassador is a tremendous for the bid campaign.”" well, now that a footballer has acknowledged the octopus’ endorsement, it can’t all be utter bullshit.  Footballers are the thinking man’s athletes right? as opposed to violent, thoughtless rapists.

And while we’re quoting people, what about the braindead German woman who said “I think the public need something to believe in when there’s things going on that they’re not sure about, it’s nice to have something positive”.  If it’s positivity you’re looking for, why not stop to look at the lillies in the god damn field?  Also, in what way is an octopus arbitrarily choosing coloured cubes something positive?  There are plenty of adjectives I can think of to describe it – stupid, bizarre, fucking deranged – but certainly not positive.

It should also be  pointed out that the vast majority of Paul’s fans are also football fans and I think there’s a connection, although stupidity is not exclusive to football.

In the words of Bill Hicks, humanity is a “virus with shoes”, which is definitely applicable in this case.  Selectively culling the population is never a good idea, but next time one of these mouth breathers steps out in front of your car, please think twice applying the brakes.

Dear Mr Junior Prime Minister, who do you think you are kidding?  Look at you, with your face like a Cameron replicant and the views to match, you’re like a talking mirror that reassures Call Me Dave that everything is fine.  Besides that, I can’t actually see any reason why you’re still hanging around, you don’t do anything practical and you seem to have a knack for alienating your party and all those who voted for you.

You call yourself a Liberal, but what does that really mean to you?  You certainly don’t seem to have much in common with your namesake party who don’t seem to be very happy with what’s going on.  You constantly trumpet the virtues of the coalition government, but that doesn’t mean you should agree with every single policy.  Your party doesn’t.

Let’s face it, the coalition government was born out of convenience, not agreement, yet you seem to forget this on a regular basis.  Has all this time spent playing with the big boys gone to your head?

I know you got a great deal out of the coalition talks; you gave the Tories all the power they wanted and they agreed to let you watch, albeit from the safe distance of your offices, not Downing Street.  When the Prime Minister goes on holiday, you get to do some of the shit that isn’t worth his time, although you’re not filling in for him, you’re just getting some mileage out of your role as junior Prime Minister.

It must be somewhat upsetting for you, knowing that Peter Mandelson had more power and responsibility in the previous government when Gordon Brown went away than you do now.

Which brings me nicely to my next point: Yes Nick, there was a Labour government for 13 years and yes, they made some mistakes – nobody’s perfect – but you have to now acknowledge that that is over.  Please stop using Labour as a way of avoiding any difficult decisions your Conservative government has to make, they’ve been in power for 101 days now, and there’s still 5 years left, I’d say it’s time to take responsibility.

It’s time to admit that your role is ultimately meaningless and all you have achieved is to hand power to the Conservatives.  It’d be much easier to believe your rhetoric if any Lib Dem plans actually amounted to something, but so far, there’s been very little of that.

Can you please just do the country – and your party – a favour; switch sides officially, you’re already a Tory in all but name, step away from the Liberal Democrats and allow them repair the image you have damaged so much.  It’s the best thing you can do.

Oh come on! This is just ridiculous.  According to a study by – you guessed it – Americans, superheroes are bad role models for kids.  I’m not one to use the phrase ‘no shit Sherlock’ very often, but I feel it’s necessary in this case, if only because they’re fucking fictional!

The study conducted by psychologists from the University of Massachusetts suggests that the superheroes of yesteryear were much better for kids than the thuggish bullies we have now.  I tell you, back when the Nazis were around, there was no violence anywhere and fascists and superheroes alike helped old ladies across the street.

Apparently, the researchers identified two distinct types of role model for kids today.  First of all, there’s the brutish, hedonistic hard man ‘action hero’ and secondly, there’s the perennially underachieving ‘slacker’.  I must ask, where do they get theses ideas?  It’s almost as if people like this actually exist in the real world and are simply mirrored by the media, but that can’t be right, otherwise society would have crumbled by now.

Professor Sharon Lamb who is responsible for the work, claimed that “when not in superhero costume, these men, like Ironman, exploit women, flaunt bling and convey their manhood with high-powered guns”, you sure you’re not thinking of rappers?

Modern superheroes were described by Professor Lamb as: “aggressive, sarcastic and rarely speaks to the virtue of doing good for humanity”.  Which is true, but I’d suggest that it’s probably because that’s what people want and the market for Super Cliff Richard is pretty slight, although an Al Gore saving the world with Powerpoint comic might find and audience.

Professor Lamb also mentions the ‘Slacker’ as follows: “Slackers are funny, but slackers are not what boys should strive to be; slackers don’t like school and they shirk responsibility”  Well, thank fuck there were no slackers when I was at school, I remember every single child in the world ever loving every minute of compulsory education.

The good professor goes on to ask: “We wonder if the messages boys get about saving face through glorified slacking could be affecting their performance in school.”  No! No no no!  Kids often fail to try hard at school because they understandably hate it and they’d rather be out having fun.  How detached from reality are these people?

Another one of these cretins, Dr Carlos Santos from Arizona State University presented a study about how macho imagery influences young boys.  He claimed that resistance to macho images breaks down as a male develops into a teenager, putting their mental health at risk.

Dr Santos seems to be suggesting that children should be taught/forced to resist any macho tendencies, “helping boys resist these behaviours early on seems to be a critical step toward improving their health and the quality of their social relationships.”  Seems a bit fucking daft to me as I was under the impression that this kind of behaviour is hard-wired into the male brain as an evolutionary trait and has more to do with testosterone than with macho imagery.

Why can’t these overpaid idiots wake up to the fact that art tends to imitate life and it’s unusual for the reverse.  There have always been underachievers and bullies and that’s not likely to change any time soon.  Let’s look at the world around us and observe every McDonald’s, hip-hop video and gym and see if we can’t find at least a handful of slackers and/or pituitary blockheads, because I have a funny feeling they’re out there.  Won’t somebody please think of the children?

Special thanks to Niall Hartshorn, I stole one of your jokes!

I hate children, I hate the little bastards and everything they do, so it’s always puzzled me why some people have that “think of the children” mentality.  It’s bollocks.  Complete and utter bollocks.  What makes children so great?  Nothing, that’s what and I resent the implication that they deserve better than adults simply by virtue of being small.

And so we arrive at today’s news that Iraqi student, Rabar Hamad who could be aged either 16 or 20 is facing deportation, apparently because of the trivial matter of his age.  Now, here’s the thing; if he’s 16 as he claims to be, he’d be eligible to stay in the UK and be protected by Wigan Council.  However, if he’s 20, as social workers claim him to be, he’ll be deported to Iraq.  Why? It’s hard to tell, although apparently when you reach maturity you don’t deserve protection.

Hamad – stowed away in the wheel arch of a truck – arrived in the UK in 2008 after his parents were murdered in Iraq, since then he’s devoted his time to studying and learning how to read and write – which is more than can be said for a lot of British people.  Considering the above, it should be pretty obvious to most people (even the Daily Mail) that Hamad is not in Britain to cause trouble and that if he is returned to Iraq, he faces certain danger.

I know what some people may be thinking; “Yeah, but he lied about his age, how can we trust him?”  Well, the Conservatives lied about not making cuts to the NHS and look what happened.  I get the feeling I’m getting a little bit off topic here, but let me just ask if it’s any more dangerous than someone lying about their age to avoid murder in Iraq?

Anyway, back to the case in point, I don’t understand why it is that compassion has to end at 16.  Just because someone is no longer a child, it doesn’t eliminate the risks they faced when they were one.  It’d make a lot more sense to consider the facts and acknowledge that Hamad would probably be much better off here.  And while we’re talking compassion, I also don’t understand why it is that people who’re helping him could potentially face prison and/or a fine, if it’s done for the right reasons, what’s the problem?

I worry that the real problem here isn’t that someone’s life is potentially at risk, but that rules and regulations are considered more important than a person’s well-being.  It shouldn’t matter how old somebody is, if they’ve been promised help, they should receive it.  In Hamad’s case, it could be worth giving him the option of British citizenship, because let’s face it, it’d cost less in the long-run and we do have an economic crisis on our hands, right?  Maybe I’m just being silly.

If you’d like to show your support, have a look here.

Naomi Campbell must have a hard life what with being a so-called supermodel and having people giving her diamonds and all.  My heart really goes out to her, she’s a strong woman.  I mean, if I were testifying to a war-crimes tribunal I know I’d just do something daft like telling the truth, but gawd bless Naomi, she’s stuck to her guns.

What must be even harder for her is that she’s so busy, frivolous trips to the Hague effectively stop her living her life, but hey, war crimes trials are sooo last season.

I’m not saying that Naomi Campbell is a horrible person, I’ve never met her – although there are good odds on her being a total cunt – but in her current circumstances, surely it’d be better to try and bring genocidal scum bag Charles Taylor to justice, rather than lying to cover her own back.  And on that note, who did she think she was kidding?  Her testimony was destined to be scrutinised not only by the court, by the western media as well.  Did she assume that no-one would question her version of events? or that her fellow witnesses would not say anything contrary?

Oh well, at least she had the conscience to give the diamond(s) she received to charity, right?

I suppose you don’t need brains to walk on cats.