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Archive for September 19th, 2009

Dear Reader

I am enjoying Alastair Campbell’s The Blair Years.  It is taking me a while to plough through it… this is not a criticism of Mr Campbell – I am enjoying it, even if it would appear that much of the work done by government during these early years of Blair’s regime appears to have been done by Mr Campbell himself.  It is a fascinating account, raw and, assuming that it is accurate, paints a fairly chaotic and frenetic picture of life at the heart of government and international affairs.  I like the direct and vivid style. It is history,  but not a dry history book or tedious biography.

I was particularly amused by this passage from p220…

There was a bizarre scene during a break, in the Gents (A NATO summit in July 1997). Several leaders, including Clinton, TB, [Romano] Prodi [Prime Minister of Italy], Kok and Kohl, were all having a pee in a row of stand-up urinals. Clinton turned around and said ‘Isn’t this the greatest picture that was never taken?’  TB (Blair) told him the the story of the time Churchill moved away from Attlee while they were peeing together. Attlee looked hurt.  Churchill explained: ‘Every time you see something big you want to nationalise it.’

The Silly Season is over. The Unions are filling hot air balloons at their annual conference and soon we shall not be entertained by the three main parties at their annual conferences.  Nick Clegg [Leader of the Liberal-Democrat Party] will do his best to re-cycle a few ideas and come up with reasonable but impractical suggestions – as only the leader of a party that will never govern again can.  The mumbo-jumbo men are psyching themselves up for Christmas (as are the shops with mince pies already on the shelves) and are, no doubt, honing their sermons for the Nativity et al.  I’ve decided that being an atheist is probably enough, but it would be more fun to be a militant atheist.  I’m with Jonathan Meades who, in his excellent TV programme Off Kilter, said words to the effect… “religion was, perhaps, understandable 2000 years ago, but today it is inexcusable.” The more I read about it, the more I see in the news, the more conflict and repression I see, the more ignorance transmitted by men and women of education who ought to know better, the more angry I become. Perhaps, as a militant atheist, I could suggest a jihad or a crusade against religions…. but that would just be ridiculous.

The latest nonsense  to hit town with the enthusiasm of a modern day law marketer or SEO salesman on Twitter…. is the relics show. John Bolch of Family Lore, a fellow atheist, drew this to my attention. John writes….

The news that the “relics” (read: bits of thigh and foot bones) of “St Thérèse of Lisieux” (read: a nineteenth-century French nun) had arrived in Britain in 2009 for a month-long tour just had to be a spoof, surely? Sadly, it appears not – there are still sufficient numbers of people so deluded as to actually believe this nonsense. As Matthew Parris in The Times today points out, an event like this is a reminder to all right-thinking people not to legitimise mumbo-jumbo with undeserved respect.

Apart from paying respects to dead bones of a person one did not know being preposterous (and paying respects to the bones of someone one did know… a touch bizarre… a fortiori… if they are in a glass casket in the dining room), I am coming to believe that people’s lives are being adversely affected by what I call ‘involuntary belief’ – where religious mores and values are forced on people, often poor, poorly educated and disadvantaged people, for the purpose of bolstering up the very institutions of religious carpetbaggery and are being used in some parts of the world (if not in Britain, these days) to control a population to political advantage.  I have absolutely no problem with the right of  educated men  to run around in 14th Century robes and mitres, grow beards and large eyebrows and spout platitudes and folklore, possibly based on writing by people who had turned too much water into wine and which  they cannot possibly believe in…literally….  and the right of  equally sensible people, through consent, who wish to believe in, or indulge, this pantomime  – fine…. good luck to them.

But…. I do begin to wonder, given the harsh lives many lived in times gone by under the yolk of a powerful Church and those, today, whose lives are made miserable by warfare based on religion – if the whole thing is rather squalid and ought to be removed from the legal fabric of our country…. all of it…. Christianity, Islam, the lot…. and place it on the same level as any other legal pastime… with no legal  protection, political position or ‘correctness’  given to any religion.

And finally… for I have to write Blawg Review for my other blog with Colin Samuels…. a piece on the interfering state…. by the artist David Hockney.  My thanks again to John who cares about my human rights as a Smokedo 30adaydan Master…. Hockney on Blair and Brown and Smoking in Pubs.

Oh… and if you want a laugh after my tap dancing on water rant outside Lambeth Palace earlier…. this is actually worth looking at…. from Guido Fawkes last night Question Time Special: Are we fooked? …… and you may also enjoy listening to David Starkey excerpted from a recent Question Time – pure class. Excellent YouTube vid.

I would like it to be known that I do not employ a housekeeper, let alone an illegal immigrant housekeeper – so I have not  been phoned up by members of the press asking if I have any advice for the Attorney-General and her problems vis a vis employing illegal immigrant domestic staff.

Best, as always….

Charon

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Warning to spammers

I am bored by spammers trying to promote their law services (or other services) in Luton, Runcorn and Outer Mongolia on my blog by using the comments section.

I am not stupid. When I see vapid, vacuous comments like “Great site, keep up the good work” or “Really appreciate your work…. bollocks, flatulence,  bollocks” and there is a link under the writer’s name to a law firm service etc etc… this just irritates me.

You picked the wrong site to do this on – because I have eyes in the back of my head.  I shall simply re-direct your link to an inappropriate porno site – and that won’t do your reputation or SEO optimised Google ranking any good.  It will also amuse me – but, frankly, I can get my laughs by doing other things. Capische?

If you really would like to promote your services to readers – you may advertise on Insite Law and sponsor the free resource project as serious service providers, publishers, law schools, law firms and the like  are doing (this is why we are able to provide what we hope is a valuable FREE service – and if your service is appropriate for readers on Insite Law we will take your advert and you can be upfront about it.


PS… if you make a comment that is relevant to the post – as normal commenters do – you may link to your law firm, blog or any service you provide using the website link panel when you comment.  I have absolutely no problem with that!

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