Archive | March, 2008

are our champions of industry idiots?

28 Mar

And so the grand opening of Heathrow’s much-lauded Terminal 5 has been a disaster.

Is anyone surprised?

Irish-born Willie “the buck stops with me” Walsh, has long strutted the media as one of Britain’s Champions of Industry. And yet we saw yesterday that no matter how much we crow, our businesses are simply not terribly well run.

I know, I know; it was the opening day of a new terminal and airports are always a nightmare, but come on! 34 flights cancelled? 4-hours to reclaim baggage? What’s wrong with us?

Heathrow is the first point of entry for many visitors to the UK. And for some travellers, only using the airport as a launch-pad to the rest of Europe and beyond, this incompetence and chaos is all they’ll see. What perception will these people have of the United Kingdom?

Well, a pretty accurate one probably.

As someone who has worked in industry for over a decade, in many differing roles (including operations, sales, small-enterprises, and finance), I can say with some confidence that we’re, in the main, a disorganised and sloppy bunch. I’m amazed at the number of businessmen (of businesses large and small) who don’t keep an accurate diary, don’t understand how to maximise ROI, and are unable to follow through on simple commitments.

Oh, and did you see The Apprentice the other night? Our best and brightest bigging themselves up, only to prove themselves unable to count, identity fish from pictures, and about as organised as a heard of cats.

Like Willie Walsh, it’s all hot-air and bullshit.

guardian to expand its online presence

27 Mar

Rational Geekery: The Guardian gets seriously online

The Guardian, understanding the limitations of dead-tree media, is diversifying beyond even its successful online news and comment portal model. The Guardian sees itself as a “platform” that will work alongside start-ups, offering support and sharing its resources. It’s unclear whether the new business will provide funding for projects outside of its immediate umbrella.
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dizzy’s empty diatribe against the “anti-war left”

27 Mar

Oh dear. Someone’s trying to be clever again.

Now far be it from me to suggest that this article is the biggest load of fucking idiocy Dizzy has ever posted (I know, that would be quite a stretch), but I do think it may be in with a shot.

Poor old Dizzy has decided to attack that most eeeevil section of the population: the anti-war left. You see, we’re not actually concerned about the bloodshed or the violence. Oh no. And, we’re not, apparently, bothered about the damage done to our own security and standing, either. You see, the world according to Dizzy, dictates that actually, if we’re honest, we’re just obsessed with our own sense of “moral self-righteousness.”

We also, he explains, sicken him.

Now before we apologise profusely, maybe we should examine the salient points made by Dizzy that have led to his apparent nausea?

Just a quick observation on the situation in Basra. The reports in the papers note that it is now Shia on Shia fighting as the Iraqi forces take on militia. The obvious cry is that of ‘civil war’ and you can guarantee that rabid anti-war protesters that bang on about how the whole thing was ‘illegal’ will play the connect the dot game with logic and say ‘well it’s all our fault’ line.

Civil War? Obvious? Well if you say so, Dizz.

There is no retrospective joining of dots. We have said from before the invasion that it was the wrong thing to do. Now this has been proven by events, we’ve little need for retrospective musing.

You know how it works, if we had not gone into Iraq this fighting would not have happened, ergo, we are to blame for the fighting. It’s understandabe [sic] why they say this because it’s lazy and very easy thinking that is commonplace, particularly on the Left which is defined by its Hegelian tendencies to see the world through a master/slave, oppresser/oppressed type prism.

Hegelian tendencies? Would that be the same Hegelian (?!) world-view that led to a post-imperial mission to spread “democracy” to those barbarians in the Middle East? I wonder…

However, what should really be remembered is this. Saddam Hussein was a Sunni, and the Shias were considered scum of the earth and subjected to all manner of horrors under his regime. To thus play the comparison game and effectively say that if more die now than died under Saddam it would have been better to have done nothing simply results in two things.

Actually, I’m not sure that should be remembered. Because it’s pretty fucking incoherent. More dying now is a bad thing. Two dead people is worse than one. Oh, and BTW, no-one said we should do nothing. That’s pretty fucking lazy, Dizz. We said that we should continue to work through the UN. We said that we should allow the weapons inspectors to finish their job, which, it transpires, they were doing rather well. What we argued against was an illegal war of choice; going it alone with only the US and a handful of smaller allies and without an international mandate.

You can always spot someone with a wooly argument. They always bifurcate the debate as Dizzy is doing. He knows he’s defending the indefensible, so he tries to demonise his opposition and argues they supported inaction. When in fact, many of those who argued against the war were more than aware what sort of regime existed prior to ’03.

Pssst! They knew because they criticised the Reagan administration for funding and arming it. Liberals were criticising Saddam back when he was still on the White House Christmas card list. Maybe that is what should really be remembered, eh?

Firstly it is little more than 20/20 hindsight, but second, and much worse, it places the value of human life as little more than a statistic whilst masquerading itself as a moral position.

Er, no. 20/20 hindsight suggests that we’re basing our argument on an unforeseen outcome. Anyone with just modicum of historical understanding of Iraq predicted that it would be a total clusterfuck of pain. Tom Friedman, prior to his eventual acceptance of the bullshit WMD scaremongering from the Bush administration, wrote many articles outlining the sectarian battle-lines within the Iraqi population. He argued that a tribal and religious tempest would be unleashed, and we better be ready for it (FYI we weren’t).

And as for human life as a statistic. Fuck you, you bedroom-warrior fucktard. It’s the anti-war movement that publishes the photos and posts the videos of suffering. It’s the Bush administration that outlawed anyone filming the body-bags of casualties. Don’t lecture us about our moral position. The overwhelming proof that the invasion of Iraq is a complete disaster, is demonstrable both statistically and anecdotally.

Frankly this is what sickens me most about the anti-war Left. They claim to care and cherish human life, and yet they will simultaneously be willing to sit on their hands and reduce that human life they care so much about down to a numbers game.

No we don’t you myopic twat. As I explained above, no-one – other than a fringe of loony lefties and libertarians – argued they should “sit on their hands”. They just weren’t so god-damn fucking desperate to play war with other people’s lives. Capiche?

Oh, and before I finish off; let’s not let this nugget pass: “They scream about a million deaths in the war (a bollocks figure incidentally)…” How exactly do you know it’s bollocks? Are not the Baghdad hospitals and aid agencies better placed to make this judgement? For someone who has so masterfully proved their own ignorance in previous paragraphs, this seems terribly overconfident.

And Dizzy, what was the fucking point of this diatribe? Seriously? Sometimes you seem the most rational of your particular clique, and then you write this dogshit. You haven’t made a single case for why the anti-war movement was wrong. You haven’t defended, in any useful way, the decision to go to war. All you’ve done is pen an ignorant post about how the anti-war left are a bunch of sickening wankers. Get a grip, dude.

hrc: “sleep-deprived”

26 Mar

Oh Sweet Valley High, this is pure gold.

Hillary’s excuse for her bullshit claims that she was sent to Bosnia on security matters and ran from the aeroplane under sniper fire, was that she’s tired. Or “sleep-deprived?” as she puts it. Rather makes her famous 3am ad look a bit daft now, doesn’t it?

Who do you want answering the phone at 3am? Not Hilldog, that’s for sure. She’ll spout any old crock of shit just to get off the phone and back to her beauty sleep. Jeesh.

Anyway, we can safely dismiss this latest “correction” from Mrs. C for what it is: another lie. During this campaign Clinton has proven that she comes from the same fetid swamp as the rest of America’s poisonous political class. She doesn’t represent change. She doesn’t represent hope. Hillary represents everything that makes Washington the cesspool of corruption and villainy that it is.

Andrew Sullivan reproduces this quote from Hillary: –

Occasionally, I am a human being like everybody else… For the first time in 12 or so years I misspoke.

And adds…

Occasionally, I am a human being like everybody else. This is close to clinical delusions of grandeur. Does she really think that most of the time she is above being human? Do you know any human being who hasn’t misspoken in the last twelve years once? Or would ever claim such a thing? I sure couldn’t. And this from a candidate whose most famous campaign ad rests on her ability to make national security judgments at 3 am!

Touché.

hillary! enough!

26 Mar

The New York Times’ David Brooks on Hillary: –

When you step back and think about it, she is amazing. She possesses the audacity of hopelessness.

Why does she go on like this? Does Clinton privately believe that Obama is so incompetent that only she can deliver the policies they both support? Is she simply selfish, and willing to put her party through agony for the sake of her slender chance? Are leading Democrats so narcissistic that they would create bitter stagnation even if they were granted one-party rule?

PAGING HILLARY… It’s not your house anymore. Get over it.

highly recommended

26 Mar

This post from Flying Rodent comes with my SuperStarSealOfApproval™.

It’s particularly worrying that so many on the left fell over themselves to grant continents of intellectual charity to the Republicans, trusting them with the lives of 25 million people when they wouldn’t trust the Tories to run a free bar. The Republicans’ ideological lunacy makes the British Conservatives look like committed Marxists.

Glorious, majestic stuff.

the henry jackson society. not a bunch of radicals, really

26 Mar

Cassilis produces an always interesting review of the bunkum forced through the sphincter of political thinktanks. This week’s review covers those nicely dressed warmongers at the Henry Jackson Society.

HJS revisit that tired old theme of ‘radical Islam want a global caliphate / you can’t negotiate with that / boost the voice of the moderates’ – Des Browne, Jonathan Powell and Rowan Williams all get stints on the naughty step while Mark Steyn is lauded for his prescience so that should give you the flavour of the piece! Still worth a read though…

So they’ve come to this? Lionising Mark Steyn. Oh, sweet heavenly Jesus on a motorbike.

Now, don’t get me wrong, Steyn is a funny and compelling writer. But he’s also a fruitcake and a neocon zealot. I really resent being lectured to by cheerleaders for more military interventionism in the Middle East. I wonder, who pays for the coffee over at HJS towers?