Archive for 26 October 2006

A true blue Robin Hood – British or American blue?

I was recently given a cutting from the Daily Mail, titled, ‘A true blue Robin Hood’. It said: “No praise can be too high for the BBC’s Robin Hood, whose third episode is on BBC1 this evening. One would naturally expect any BBC outlaw to be an unreconstructed socialist, virtuously robbing the rich to give to the poor.

This production is different. The Sheriff of Nottingham is a villainous character, obviously based on Gordon Brown, who goes around the place appropriating property and imposing intolerable tax levels on ordinary people, while Robin Hood is a model Tory, trying to set the people free.

From what I see, the BBC’s Sheriff of Nottingham can clearly be compared to Saddam Hussein and Robin Hood is clearly like Bill Clinton. The BBC’s Robin Hood is trying to contain the Sheriff like Bill Clinton tried and failed to enact a policy of containment with Saddam Hussein. Like Bill Clinton Robin Hood has the values of someone intolerant of injustice, but like Bill Clinton as well as being smooth talking and conveying charm this Robin Hood is concerned about his popularity.

The Sheriff like Saddam Hussein has no consideration of human rights in his quest to control his people, resorting to torturous methods to do so. Like Robin Hood’s relationship with the Sheriff, Bill Clinton as a protagonist was in a difficult position, as he knew getting rid of his antagonist would create instability.

Tory reaction to spoof video was more offensive

I read in the Media Guardian about the reaction to the spoof video
produced by Sion Simon MP and distributed by Tom Watson MP and found the reaction to
the video by the Tories more offensive than the video itself.
As Tom Watson acknowledges that the video was rude, but what was more
offensive was Tory MP stigmatising mental illness by stating that Sion Simon had
“obviously gone mad”.
Mental illness come in many forms, and most people with them are high
functioning and capable of taking decisions and making worthwhile contributions
to society. Top politicians in government have had mental illnesses, and mental
illness need not be a barrier to top executive or leadership positions.
I used to think that politicians were a special breed of people, capable of taking
anything that is thrown at them, but even the cleverest and hardest working
politicians are not invincible, and can develop mental health problems.
I believe that government and politics should become what has become known as
family friendly, and make it so that people in top positions do not develop mental
illness, and that those who have a mental illness can contribute to decision making
while having the right support.

Proceeds of Growth Rule Means a Cut in NHS Spending

Tory leader David Cameron, sets out his new direction for the NHS, while not revealing
what his proceeds of growth rule will mean for the NHS.
David Cameron’s proceeds of growth rule means he would have to cut the Labour
Government’s investment in public services, including on the NHS, by 17 billion this
year if he was in office.
In 1948 Labour established the NHS, and the Tories opposed it. In 2002 the Labour
Government voted to increase National insurance to provide extra money for the
NHS and the Tories opposed it, and while Labour won the election in 2005 on the
policy of an NHS with equal access for all free at the point of need, the Tories
opposed it. Today the Tories are committed to a proceeds of growth rule that
would mean cuts to spending, not only on the NHS, but on all our vital public
services.
At this point I would like to make it clear to people that as a student of EU Law
there is as far as I can see nothing in European Union law that says the government
must create a market or privatise the NHS. Article 86 indicates that public
monopolies, of which the NHS is one, are subject to the same rules on competition
as private undertakings. The only thing this means is that they must not engage in
price‐fixing and similar Article 81 no‐noes, and they must not abuse their dominant
position as indicated by Article 82. Article 86 does give the European Commission a
basis to pass a law to break up the NHS, like they past a law to increase
competition in the telecommunication market, but that would require the
approval of Member States. The Tories agreed to the Access Directive to break up
the railways when they were in power, but I cannot see Labour agreeing to a breakup
of the NHS, but who knows what could happen if the Tories get into power.

Why Davidson is not worth supporting

Davidson has not got what it takes to lead the pack, and has squandered all the brilliant opportunities given to them.

Obviously I am not referring to Jane Davidson, the local AM for Pontypridd, who has delivered for the people of Pontypridd, unlike her Lib Dem rival Mike Powell, who makes a joke of the political process.

I was referring to Anthony Davidson, who has been performing badly in a car in the Formula 1 Championship that Jenson Button got to the podium on last year.

It was an impressive drive from my MySpace friend, Lewis Hamilton at today’s Malaysian Grand Prix, as he fought off the Ferrari team to secure second place, alongside team-mate Fernando Alonso, securing McLaren’s first ‘one-two’ since the Brazilian Grand Prix in 2005.

Reading reports on the race, according to the BBC, Hamilton said that it was the most difficult race he had ever had and his team-mate Alonso indicated how much of a ‘team-player’ he was. “One of our chances to win the race was to be first after the first corner and thanks to a good start I was able to arrive side by side with Felipe and made the inside pass, he said. “To have my team-mate second makes things easier.

Is the blogosphere is distributed online community?

Weblogs, as online communities can share a lot in common with a bulletin boardbased
communities, if they have a commenting facility. If Amy Jo Kim‘s
membership lifecycle, which I agree with, is used to understand the people that
use these communities then you can see that people will start off as lurkers (Kim
calls them visitors), then they will become novices, and then regulars.
Thinking about the blogosphere, then there is a wider community than a bulletin
board‐based site, as bloggers will post comments on another blogger’s weblog
who might then visit their site and comment on theirs. This seems to suggest that
weblogs with commenting facilities may not be islands, but part of a distributed
online community.

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