Friday, 21 July 2017

British Understatement

The little devils.... At least it shows ingenuity and a modicum of practical skill. I've heard that they managed to bag: one itinerant; two romantic couples; brace of Japanese snipers left over from the Second World War; various assorted pansy types  and a whole gypo encampment. Good for them I say. Anyway, tis a basic instinct to protect your 'home'. A place where you feel safe, far away from lunatics/zombies/millennials. I've always believed you should keep your home as long as you can protect it. If that means having to dig up the potatoes for a shallow grave, so be it. Don't forget to put down lots and lots of lime.

Happy hunting

Tuesday, 18 July 2017

In a World Gone Completely Bat Shit Crazy........

As my readers will no doubt know, I have a pathological hate for liberal PC bollocks. My particular bugbear is so-called ‘gender fluidity’. When I was a lad the equation was very simple: there were two genders of the contrary nature: male + female= humanity. As I became knowledgeable in things biological I learned that a rare number of folk had the reproductive organs of both sexes. This is not to say that they had two distinct and discrete reproductive organs, but they certainly had male and female reproductive tissue with varying stages of development. I realised that these poor folk did  not fit easily into the male/female dichotomy and therefore I could envisage a third biological gender: hermaphrodite, or inter-sex.

Then something happened a few years ago when various ‘fruit n nuts’ started to manufacture genders to suit their lifestyle. I could care less about individual’s lifestyle choices. I’m a tolerant type of cove; I’m sure you have noticed. Although I’m not overly fond of gypos, Japanese snipers and Arthur Askey. What I won’t stand for is the PC Brigade and assorted liberal lefties imposing this nonsense onto me. I can stretch to three gender states, anything else is a mere social construct and completely meaningless and devoid of biological content. To emphasise the arbitrary nature of forced gender constructs let us consider ‘genders’ recognised by the Australian sex survey conducted by researchers at The Queensland University of Technology. This study identifies 33 separate genders. I have listed them all for my reader’s edification:
Transgender Woman; Transgender Man; Trans person; Transsexual; Transgender; Trans Man; Trans Woman; Female to Male; Male to Female;  Transsexual; Cisgender; Cis Female; Cis Male; Gender Non-Conforming;. None Gender; Non-Binary; Neutrois; Genderfluid; Genderqueer; Demigender;. Demigirl; Demiboy; Agender; Intergender; Intersex; Pangender; Poligender; Omnigender; Bigender; Androgyne; Androgyny; Third Gender and  Trigender.
And let us not forget the mundane but accurate designation- Male and Female. 

According to Facebook there are 56 recognised genders. Surely this just underscores the whimsical and capricious (nay, absurd) nature of gender insanity.

Should we pander to a minority of weirdo’s and inadequate folk living on the margins of society? Tis bad enough to hear the whinging, whining minority, insisting that we don’t assent to the patriarchal notion of binary gender and woe betide you if you call them by the wrong pronoun. Expect a shrill screech of entitlement. What is even more disturbing is the willingness of the ‘The Establishment’ to comply with this madness. The government inspired ‘Women and Equalities Committee’ chaired by British Members of Parliament are of the opinion: That gender should be removed from official documents and passports. 

These MPs are turning gender confusion into a judicial stance that cries out for  enforcement. The committee are also of opinion that the act of denying gender fluidity is tantamount to a hate crime and wants: ‘stirring up hatred’ against trans people to become a criminal offense. This includes insulting and derogatory remarks ie denying irrational gender assignment. It seems that the hard won right: 'freedom of speech' should only apply if no one is offended. May Woden forgive us.

If an individual considers themselves a trans-gender cis-trans, then good luck to them. Just don’t expect me to be complicit and comply. Germaine Greer caused a stir when she sensibly stated: “that transgender women ‘can’t be women", adding: “Just because you lop off your penis … it doesn’t make you a woman.” A lucid moment of sanity from an unexpected source in a debate bordering on the surreal. Rant over.

I’m off to my expansive Drawing Room to consume a quart of brandy and smoke a good cigar. I may be some time.


Watch and weep with laughter.......

Wednesday, 12 July 2017

Wednesday Bollocks

Are folk getting dumber? Is the education system of the Free World failing its inhabitants? Why is it that women who obtain a degree in ‘free expression feminist dance’ work in MacDonalds and complain that they can’t get a high paid job as a ‘free expression feminist dance teacher’. Mayhap they should have majored in electrical engineering.  

In a modern world we need less liberal arts graduates and more scientists, engineers, programmers and estate agents. But people without intellectual smarts will always gravitate to the social 'sciences' (no such thing). They do say (the voices in my head, that is) that the service industry is a growth area especially since the decline in the manufacturing industry. So I suppose they are fulfilling a role. I’m sure a degree in philosophy is wonderful for your personal intellectual development just don’t expect to end up as a professional philosopher. Many are called but none are chosen.

This rambling introduction of despair is just a prelude to extreme asinine stupidity. Regard the following images and weep mightily……

Yep not a good idea to swallow a coat hangar or stick them up your arse either. Best just to use them for the casual abortion. You know it makes sense.

Sound advice, I'm sure: breathing under water represents a novel means of respiration and ultimately expiration. Cease and desist! Rain is indeed wet- please note for future reference. Also, be aware that rain tends to make other things, wet.  

This sign is not effective if you are very drunk. A large hole in the wall is easy to aim at and helps to keep the floor free of piss.

It is important to stop at 'stop signs' and further reiteration is vitally important, otherwise you may fail to see the original 'stop sign' and advance into oncoming traffic. As for sitting on the fence. I'm sure this sign is designed for folk who indulge in a particular niche activity. Judging by the bent tip of the 'spiky things', this sign is not effective. 

This library is closed and it stands to reason that it will open at opening time, otherwise it will remain steadfastly closed until it opens. What a strange tautology we live in.

Peanuts do contain peanuts. From a logical position, this 
proposition cannot be faulted. Nuff said.

Arse, big sore arse 

Saturday, 8 July 2017

Bertrand Russell

Bertrand Russell in 1876

Bertrand Russell

There is little doubt that Bertrand Russell represents the foremost quintessential philosopher and all round savant of the 20th century. Russell burst from the womb in 1872 and had the good fortune to be born within the British nobility and consequently thrived- good for him. He received an early liberal education and eventually graduated from Cambridge University in 1893 with a First Class degree ( BA) in mathematics.
Russell’s mind was exceedingly dynamic and far reaching and he exemplifies the popular notion of the polymath; a man of prodigious and exceptional intellectual gifts. Throughout his long and mentally active life (d. 1970) he contributed majestically to analytical mathematics, logic, historical research and most areas of philosophy, except aesthetics.

He was considered a Socialist and a Pacifist during his life, although his views did waver between extremes during various geo-politico calamities. Prominent in his opposition to the Great War, for which he was rightly imprisoned, some of his latter writings suggest the possibility of a pre-emptive nuclear strike on a Post Second World War USSR. After 1949, when the USSR developed a nuclear retaliation potential, this sort of thinking became unfashionable, even amongst pacifists.

Russell was fervently involved in politics and various protest movements throughout his life. Despite, or perhaps because of his early views, he became a prominent activist for the nuclear disarmament faction and a dabbler in national and international affairs/politics. It is an observation of mine: men of profound intellectual gifts are moved to meddle in internal and international politics. It is all well and good that they should hold private opinions and views; however, they are often unfit, due to their mental temper, to interfere in matters that should be left to the second rate intellect which is the hallmark of the career politician. Alas, due to their intellectual status they gain an influence all out of proportion to their private citizen status. And in addition receive a high degree of protection and accommodation from the State. Russell’s pacifistic stance during the Great War should have earned him an appointment with the hangman, for treason (he was not tried for treason), or mayhap he should have been shot for grave naivety. I’m sure the world of philosophy, subsequently, would have been a poorer place from a pure intellectual standpoint however, justice would have been served.

His private life was erratic and quite scandalous for the time even amongst a class of Aristocrats noted for their loose morals. Aristocrats have always remained unfettered from the mores of the plebeian, regardless of intellectual attainment. One of his wives begat children from another man and he fathered a child to a woman who was not his wife of the time. He engaged in many affairs sometimes simultaneously. The man's mental stamina was formidable and only matched by his physical prowess.

Unlike many professors, Russell's prose is not pedantic and intelligible unto a few. Reading Russell is an absolute delight. His clear exposition of complex technical issues is sprinkled with a heavy dose of wit and laconic humour. As a matter of recommendation I suggest a close reading of his book: 'The Problems of Philosophy' published in 1912. This deceptively slim volume attempts to introduce the educated reader to the core questions of philosophical thought which have resonated with thoughtful men and women down the centuries. And in this regard Russell is eminently successful.

There are a few books I’ve read which have changed my intellectual perspective. If I were of a pretentious nature I would say that they changed my life, but I wont, cos that would be silly, wouldn’t it? Anyway, ‘A History of Western Philosophy’ is one of those books. This highly acclaimed and ambitious project was completed in 1945. Tis a mighty tome indeed and runs to over a 1,000 pages. It covers a span of over 2,500 years from the earliest pre-Socratic philosophers to the analytical philosophy of the early 20th century. An extremely difficult synthesis and a book that could only have been completed by Russell. On reading this great book I was struck by the depth and breadth of knowledge possessed by the man; it truly staggers the mortal intellect. What he manages to do, and do exceedingly well, is provide historical, social and cultural context to his philosophers. Each is considered within the framework and milieu of his time. For instance, it is impossible to consider the nationalistic tone of the late18th/early 19th century German philosophers without a consideration of the despoliations of Napoleonic France upon the German states. Or the role of 'The Enlightenment' on the developing theories of the British Empiricists. Past influences on the development of ideas concerning individual philosophers are brought forth to form a chain of advancing intellectual thought. To understand Aristotle you must first read Plato. Anyone thinking of entering into the murky waters of philosophy would do well to read this book as a primer.

On a mundane and practical level, I’ve used the book as a springboard into areas of philosophy which have piqued my interest, in particular the philosophy of the British Empiricists. The sublime philosophy of David Hume struck a chord and strangely enough I am able to apply the basic tenets to my personal and professional writings. Therefore, I must revise my initial opinion that Russell should have been hanged/shot. Perhaps a lifetime in prison would pass as sufficient punishment. And at least it would allow Russell to continue writing and produce works for future generations to read and experience wonder. Would Russell have been happy in gaol to peruse a life of quiet contemplation, far away from the drama of life, so long as he was not billeted with Bubba from ‘B’ Wing? But here is the rub: Russell being famous and an Aristocrat to boot would have languished in his own apartments. In fact during Russell’s first incarceration in 1918, the man wrote thusly: " I found prison in many ways quite agreeable. I had no engagements, no difficult decisions to make, no fear of callers, no interruptions to my work. I read enormously; I wrote a book, "Introduction to Mathematical Philosophy"... and began the work for "Analysis of Mind". Bertrand Russell (1998)." The First War". Autobiography. Psychology Press. ISBN 9780415189859. 

Methinks he protests too much. Russell was of an amorous nature and  unlike some philosophers, was not divorced from the pleaures of the flesh. Mayhap, over time, he  may have become extremely restless without a women's caress. And who can blame him?
So there we have it: Russell,  a man of high genius, high humour, high treason and perfidy. What more do you want in a Great Man?

Wednesday, 5 July 2017

Bow II: A Trilogy in Four Parts

Expensive Firewood

A few months ago I wrote about my latest obsession- archery. At that time I bought a few bows and had a go at making my own. How hard can it be? A longbow is essentially a stick, isn’t it? So I obtained a piece of straight grained Ash and set about the project like a man possessed/demented. I plundered YouTube for information and purchased all the correct woodworking tools. I knew, with my C.S.E obtained at Tipton Secondary Modern  in woodwork (grade 4), I could knock out a bow in a matter of weeks. I should have reflected upon the fact the reason I managed to get a mean grade 4 was mainly due to my excellence in the theory and not the practice. Tis a shame that my Alma Mater burnt down the day after I left. As an astonishing point of coincidence, the fire started in the woodwork room. Predictably I fucked it all up (the bow, not the fire) and ended up with a piece of expensive firewood. I made every mistake possible but learned greatly from the exercise. No problem, I’m sure I could use the Ash for one of my many incendiary projects. The council has just inaugurated a lunatic asylum down the road from where I live. Of course you can’t call it a lunatic asylum these days. I think the council has named the place: ‘The Mental Health Unit’. The neighbours call it: The ‘Fruit ‘n’ Nut house. I’m starting to senesce.

Being of an obsessive nature makes me stubborn (nay, obdurate) and persistent. So, I decided to start again but this time I’m  making the task a little easier. I’ve managed to source a consignment of wide diameter bamboo (4 inches). Currently attempting to build a bamboo Asiatic horse bow. The handle and syhas (winged end bits) have been fashioned out of a piece of random hardwood I salvaged from a local dumpster. The next stage is to work the bamboo flat, heat harden and to shape the limbs. I’ll retreat to my ‘man cave’ this weekend for the final stage of the bow making process. Actually bamboo is easy to work, very forgiving and therefore I’m moderately optimistic that I’ll end up with a workable bow.

After a four week training course at the local archery club I’m a fully paid up member, together with my son. Our Saturday mornings, weather permitting, are spent at the club range. Afterwards we retire to the local pub (‘Felching Ferret’) for lunch and a couple of pints of foaming ale.

Now we come to my bow collection. Did I mention my obsessive nature? I now own seven bought bows. Most of the collection is of the primitive variety without sights and sophisticated appendages. Only a single bow has adjustable sights. The draw weights vary 26lb to 55lb. I confess I struggle with the highest poundage bow although it is a favourite with my son. I own two Eastern/Asiatic bows; one longbow and the rest are recurves.   

My archery is improving and although I’m no Robin Hood I did manage to shoot the neighbour’s cat, Fluffikins. In mitigation, I was very, very, drunk. I will keep my readers updated with regard to the bow making and Fluffikins convalescence.

Go Fluffikins

Sunday, 2 July 2017

Sunday Dilemma

Ain't life's choices difficult.  I could add a few more places to the list. Tipton is too obvious. Although the place is the arse hole of the Western world I do have a certain grudging love for the place (no shit, Flaxen?). I grew up there and like all the best Tiptonites I fucked off elsewhere as soon as I could afford good shoes.   

The Middle East could do with a bit of a stir up and North Korea would benefit from a little thermal attention. General MacArthur's dream from the first Korean war would be fulfilled. And as for Japan- the nasty slant-eyed nips got off light in 1945. A few more would help to allay my long gone uncles Charlies' fervent desire. He, being a veteran of the Burma campaign, an all. Saw things that destroy a man's humanity. Also, it might cut down on the flow of Japanese snipers parachuting into the West Midlands.

Anyway, conforming to the list in the above picture, which I can't fault, by the way, my additions would make a tally of 10 bombs. I'm making an assumption that the yield of a single bomb would be 100 Megatons. Five of the nuclear buggers would be dedicated to Japan. That'll teach them for believing that Hirohito was a god. And, also, Shintoism is a load of bollocks.

Oh, fuck it make it a round  11 bombs- Tipton is back on the list.

Now, where did I leave my medication.........

There goes the neighbourhood


Thursday, 29 June 2017

Woe to the Tiptonites: Part II

Tipton before the war
Breaking news from the iridescent, scintillating town of Tipton as it rests concise and excluded in the rustling bustles of the West Midlands.

Kim un Jong, the charismatic totalitarian ruler of glorious North Korea has issued a grave warning to its erstwhile ally. In a sternly worded memorandum, Kim du Pong had this to say: “To the leaders and people of the South Tipton Democratic State (STDs), felicities. Our great nation can no longer ignore the flagrant violations of North Korea’s national sovereignty and border integrity from warmongering and hostile actions conducted by STDs. Our nation must remain strong and unsullied from Western Imperialistic cooties. Further action of a bellicose nature will invite swift action and reprisals from our well honed military machine. Weapons of unheard mass destruction will rain upon Tipton like a very heavy rain usually experienced in this locale during the latter winter period. Be sternly advised, all our ballistic missiles are aimed roughly in your general direction and once we can find a dry box of matches you are in for it, make no mistake."

The Mayor of STDs, Enoch ‘Baby Doc’ Vowel, issued a personal statement today to allay the fears of the unconcerned and heavily diseased citizens: "I am at a loss to explain the belligerent stance adopted by Kum up Bum. I can only surmise that it is correlated with our missed goodwill shipment of prime tender dogs to the North Korean Orphanage and Glorious Meat Processing Plant just outside Ping Pong. As you aware in return for sending companion dogs to orphaned children of top North Korean officials executed by large calibre anti-tank ordinance we receive statuettes of Kim is Dim, sans dodgy haircut."

When questioned about the international crisis, Mrs Edna Mugumbo had this to say: “Ooh I met that nice Mr Kim Wilde once. He gave me a signed poster extolling the virtues of hard work and rigid adherence to Marxist-Leninist dogma. Long live the proletariat!”

Wise words indeed, Mrs Mugumbo.

Surely more god than man?

Wednesday, 28 June 2017

Midweek Bollocks

Please read the following passage gleaned from social media. Yea, I now it is a little long but to fully digest the sautéed bollocks it is necessary to savour and ingest the whole fetid, piece. On the other side, I’ll offer sage commentary with my usual verve. I’ve placed the interloper weasel words in italics. I write enough bollocks of my own and would experience strong mortification if any of my readers thought the following was penned by my large, strong, but beautiful hands. As an aside, I’ve been reliably informed that I have good strangling hands.

The word called cancer is a lie…You might not believe this but cancer is not a disease; it is a business. Cancer consists of only a deficiency of vitamin B17. It is nothing else. Cancer has become widespread; it has affected the old, young, baby and everyone. Sharing this wonderful post will expose many of the hidden hands of the world’s manipulators and annoy them.
Do you know that the book “World Without Cancer” has up till now been prevented from being translated into many world languages?
Know this: there is no disease called cancer. Cancer consists of only a deficiency of vitamin B17. It is nothing else.
Avoid chemotherapy, surgery and or taking medicines with strong side effects.
You would recall that in the past, quite a large number of seamen lost their life to a named disease (scurvy); a disease that took the life of numerous people as well. And a number of people got an enormous income from it. Afterwards, it was discovered that scurvy was just a deficiency of vitamin C. That means it wasn’t a disease (illness).
Cancer is also just like that! The colonizing world and the enemies of humanity established the cancer industry and made it into a business. from which they earn billions in income.
The cancer industry flourished after world war II. To fight cancer, all these delays, details and enormous expenditures are not needed. They only go to line the pockets of colonizers, especially since the cure for the condition was found long ago.
The prevention and cure of cancer will be obtained simply through the following strategies:
Those who have cancer should first try to know what cancer is. Do not panic! You should investigate the condition.
Nowadays does anyone die of an illness called scurvy? No. Because it gets cured.
Since cancer is only a deficiency of vitamin B17, eating 15 to 20 pieces of apricot stone/nucleus (fruit stone) everyday is enough.
Eat wheat bud (wheat sprouts). Wheat bud is a miraculous anti-cancer medicine. It is a rich source of liquid oxygen and the strongest anti-cancer matter named laetrile. This matter is present in the fruit stone of apple and is the extracted form of vitamin B17 (Amygdalin).
The American medicinal industry has started implementing the law forbidding laetrile production. This medicine is being manufactured in Mexico and gets smuggled into USA.
Dr. Harold W. Manner, in a book named “Death of Cancer” has stated that the success of cancer treatment with laetrile is as high as above 90%.
Sources of Amygdalin (Vitamin B17)
The foods containing vitamin B17 include the following:
-The fruit stone or grain(seed) of fruits. This contains the highest amount of vitamin B17 in nature. This includes fruit stone of apple, apricot, peach, pear, and prune (dried plum).
-Common beans, corns(grains), which include bean, lentil sprout (lentil bud) Lima (Lima beans) and pea.
-Kernels: Bitter Almond (Richest source of vitamin B-17 in nature) and Indian almond.
-Mulberries: almost all mulberries such as black mulberry, blueberry, raspberry and strawberry.
-Seeds (Grains): sesame and linseed (seed of linen/flax seed).
-Groats of oats, barley, brown rice, groats of block wheat, linseed, millet and rye.
This vitamin is found in grains and fruit stones of apricot, brewer’s yeast, rough rice (paddy) and sweetmeat pumpkin.
List of Anti-Cancer Foods
•Apricots (kernels/seeds)
•seeds from other fruits like apples, cherries, peaches, prunes, plums, pears
•Lima beans
•Fava beans
•Macadamia nuts
•Bean sprouts
All are the highest sources of absorbable vitamin B17.
Ingesting dish washing liquids (used in the kitchen) and hand washing liquid (used in the restroom) is the main cancer causing factor so your eating of them should be restricted. You will surely say that we do not eat them!
However, you daily wash your hands with hand washing liquid and wash your plates with dish washing liquid. The liquid is absorbed and will not leave the plate with washing. When cooking or eating food, the soap in the plate or dish gets attached to the hot food and so we end up eating the dish washing liquid with our food. Even if you rinse the plate hundreds of times, that will be of no use.
But the solution is to pour half of the dishwashing liquid and hand washing liquid and top it up with vinegar.
It is as simple as that. Do not eat blood cancer causing agents and also save your family from this danger. Similarly, seriously desist from washing vegetables with even a few drops of dishwashing liquid because irrespective of how much you would rinse them, the chemicals would have already entered the tissues of the vegetable and will not get rinsed away. Instead, soak fruits and vegetables with salt and then rinse with water. And to keep them fresh, add vinegar.
Please share this post with others so they can also benefit from the information.

Flaxen Saxon's words of ultimate wisdom
1. Apparently, cancer is not a disease but due to a vitamin deficiency. Therefore consuming foods rich in vitamin B17 stops you getting cancer, according to the above. As a human geneticist with 30 years experience of cancer studies, especially in the field of leukaemia, I understand that cancer can be caused by many things: an inherited genetic disposition; an impaired immune system; exposure to mutagens and carcinogens, like radiation, certain chemicals and viruses. While it is true that certain diets may be beneficial in protecting from cancer, overall mitigation will never be 100%.
2. Not eating washing up liquid is sound advice. Personally I'm trying to cut back to six pints a day (hic). Don't do it folks, you know it makes sense.
3. There is no scientific evidence in any peer reviewed and respectable Medical/Scientific journal to support the contention that laetrile/ amygdalin/B17 has any anti-cancer properties. Nuff said.
4. Direct quote: "Avoid chemotherapy, surgery and or taking medicines with strong side effects". The backbone of many successful cancer treatments involves surgery, chemotherapy and adjunct radiotherapy. To eschew conventional and proven therapies and to rely on B17 solely, is a sure way to an early demise. A diagnosis of childhood Acute Lymphocytic Leukaemia (ALL) was a virtual death sentence 60 years ago. Today, with modern chemotherapy regimes, 80% of children become long term survivors. Furthermore, modern cancer treatments are being developed which target the genetic drivers of cancer. They are specific, highly effective and cause relatively few side effects. 
5. The implication that medical doctors are implicated in suppressing ‘B17 therapy’ is pure conspiracy theory and not worthy of further comment or discussion. 
6. Wheat is a source of liquid oxygen. No, wheat is not a source of liquid oxygen. As liquid oxygen exists at -183°C, ingestion of said is likely to result in severe cryo-burns and a free trip to the morgue. Statements such as this emphasise the scientific and medical bankruptcy, of the author.  
7. Apart from the grammar, there is a large red flag waving like a beacon of danger for those who can see red wavy things. That does not include bulls; bulls like all bovines, are irredeemably colour blind. Proponents of alternative cancer treatments invariably market the treatment as a ‘cure all’. They consider all cancers the same when in fact cancer is not a single disease but a host of different disorders each with its own set of inherited/acquired genetic abnormalities affecting different cell types. To state that cancer is a single disease indicates a severe lack of understanding concerning cancer mechanisms, cancer development and modern cancer treatment. Clever scientists and physicians have diligently been conducting double blind trials to assess treatment efficacy. Trials are laborious and painstaking; it certainly isn’t sexy science. The fight against cancer continues and new and highly effective chemicals are becoming available for cancer treatment every day, although some cancers remain stubbornly resistant to therapy. But surely ingesting a handful of vitamins recommended by some fringe/unhinged  quack is no treatment at all?     

So there you have it. Are we to believe a semi-illiterate layperson extolling the virtues of B17 for treating a highly complex and diverse set of biological disorders? Or do we stick to proven scientifically validated anti-cancer therapies conducted by highly educated and experienced professionals?
 I rest my case, M'lud. 

Wednesday, 21 June 2017

The Ship of Theseus

The ship wherein Theseus and the youth of Athens returned had thirty oars, and was preserved by the Athenians down even to the time of Demetrus Phalereus, for they took away the old planks as they decayed, putting in new and stronger timber in their place, insomuch that this ship became a standing example among the philosophers, for the logical question as to things that grow; one side holding that the ship remained the same, and the other contending it was not the same.
(Plutarch 1880, 7-8)

Consider this: A wooden ship of old is exalted beyond all other seafaring vessels and the proud townsfolk decide to maintain the ship in the harbour in pristine condition. Every year a plank of wood is replaced. This continues for many long year until every original plank, the rigging and every bronze nail has been supplanted. The ship looks exactly the same as the day it was commissioned, with all pomp and ceremony and much  blustering by self important officials culminating with the then incumbent Mayoress, Dame Lilly Magumbo, shattering a bottle of ‘Blue Nun’ on its glistening newly commissioned hull. I’m staring to digress. The ship even displays the same name plate, ‘Salty Ferret’ and conforms to all the original dimensions in every regard. The point is: Although every piece of the original ship has been changed we end up with a structure that looks the same as the original ship and bears the same name. Would you consider this to be the same ship that slid off the slipway all those eons ago? 

Consider a second scenario: During the protracted restoration process a long line of boat yard enthusiasts decide to collect all the old pieces of the original ship and lovingly preserve the discarded bits. You know the type. The sort of folk who  hang around train stations with a notebook, pencil, single lens reflex camera and a hope in their heart that they will catch a glimpse of the 2.13pm Dudley to Tipton express. Invariably they work as office clerks and share a slovenly house with an elderly widowed mother with a penchant for cats.    

Said enthusiasts decide, after a very long collection period, to rebuild the original ship in all its majestic glory. After toil, lovingly given, a new/old ship is completely restored and floats resplendent next to the ‘Salty Ferret’. The enthusiasts ponder mightily, and after much deliberation and consideration, unanimously decide to call the ‘new’ ship, ‘Salty Ferret’. The townsfolk are nonplussed and discombobulated and berate the enthusiasts, thusly: “Hold hard Sir, we already have the original ‘Salty Ferret’ here in the harbour. Tis imperative that you name this impostor ship by another moniker- why not call it ‘Salty Ferret II’. But the upstarts (for it is they) retort: “Surely, our ship is the true ‘Salty Ferret’ as it contains all the original wood and rigging. Your ship, Sir, is the impostor”.

So which ship is the correct ‘Salty Ferret’? Those who hold dear in their heart the version that endured eons of despoliation and repair or those who hold true to the version lavishly constructed from the original material? What we can agree upon is that both ships cannot be the original ‘Salty Ferret’- or can they?

This is not a trivial question as it may first seem. It carries grave metaphysical consequences which have engaged clever minds for well over two thousand years and questions our fundamental conception of what is ‘identity through time'. We know that the human body changes all its cells over a period of approximately seven years. During this time interval our cells are gradually replaced and from the perspective of physical composition we are not the same organism that existed seven years ago, nevertheless we are still considered the same person. In simple terms we consider the object more than the some of the parts. And from this viewpoint both ships can lay legitimate claim to be the original 'Salty Ferret' albeit separated by material and construction. Confusing, ain't it?

Stretching the concept to the human condition, once again: What happens at the time of death? Surely the body is just a vessel and once life has ceased the person no longer remains even though, initially at least, the material composition is virtually identical to the state of life just prior to biological death. Our human existence and identity is clearly more than the accumulation of cells and even biological activity. Does our essence lie exclusively within the neurons and tissue of the brain? Is what makes us an individual- consciousness? What is consciousness anyway and how is it related to the myriad of interconnected neurons and electrical activity? Those of a religious inclination would suggest that continuity is maintained through the conception of the soul. This is, to me, a highly unsatisfactory explanation. And I would argue that it offers no new rational information to an already dense and opaque problem. After all, are we not simply layering an unintelligible concept onto an already complex and obscure problem?

I've strayed from our mythical ship and extended the metaphor into dark, murky philosophical territory. A deceptively simple problem, at least on first appraisal, has become intellectually abstruse and probably unsolvable by mortal minds. Contemplation of this and similar questions deepens our understanding of existence (maybe) even though we seem no closer to any firm and intellectually satisfying solution. All the best questions in life, the ones that enrich our intellectual existence, are invariably elusive and ultimately unanswerable.      

Wednesday, 14 June 2017

Macrocephaly and other jolly japes........

Shit on a stick!

Make-up on: check. Ragged skirt: check. Stylish purple bag: check. Tits hanging out of top: double check. Have you noticed the cellulite?  Frankly I can't see anything else.

Dat man's got a big head. I suspect this felon/melon resisted arrest and received a little light attention around the noggin with assorted cudgels. Otherwise we have to assume that his head is always this shape- reminiscent of a light bulb. Should we chortle at this man's lamentable predicament? Yes, except on the planet Kroton where it is deemed to be bad taste.

Tuesday, 13 June 2017

Woe unto the Tiptonites!

Woden sees all

Lo, in the land of the Tiptonites, the High Priestess went forth unto the land and declared a census of all the people. I come with tidings of great felicity and declare that on the eighth day of the sixth month there shall be a tally of great import.

And the populace did roll their eyes and whispered thusly, O bugger.

And they waxed wroth against the High Priestess and said, Didst thou not sware, unto the multitude, that thou wouldst not call an early election?

And the High Priestess said, Yea, I lied. For Brexit descend upon us, and I must contend with the Europeanites and sundry wretched tribes. And I must put on the armour of a strong majority in the people’s house. Therefore go ye out and be counted.

And there came from the temple pollsters, who said, Surely this woman will wax great. For her enemy is chaff and shall be dispersed to the four winds like dispersed things. For the enemy is shite and found wanting. Surely the sword of righteousness will cut them down like ripe corn.

And the High Priestess said, No shit.

And there came from the wastelands a wastrel prophet, whose name was Jeremiah. He came from the political wilderness and his beard was long enough to hide a brace of ferrets. His garments were dishevelled and smelt of pee. And he whispered  in a small voice, Behold, I bring you new taxes.

And suddenly there was a host of young people who harked at his proclamation. And he said unto them, Ye shall study and grow wise in all things, and I shall not ask ye for gold. And the sick shall be made well. And he promised unto them all manner of goodly things with money that belonged to him not at all.

And the young people said unto him, How shall these things be rendered unto us, seeing that thou hast no gold or silver in thy bare coffers?

And he spake unto them in a voice of booming bass and said, Soak the middle-class for the rich evade my wiles and the poor have fuck all except wide screen tellies.

And the young folk said, we like these words muchly. Woe to the 'boomers' for they will be punished until the fourth generation for their folly!

And they hearkened unto the word of Jeremiah, and fell hook line and sinker for his honeyed words. For they said unto themselves, Lo, he bringeth unto us the desire of our hearts. He cometh by bicycle, with a mighty helm strapped to his ragged, lice ridden bonce. And he eateth neither flesh nor fowl, according to the Scriptures. For man cannot live by bread alone, but tofu is quite okay.

And the High Priestess saw all these things and waxed with ire. And she gathered unto her the chief scribes and the Pharisees and said unto them, What the fuck is going on?

And they said unto her, Tis merely an aberration and not reflective of reality; freteth not.

But they sayest unto themselves, When the multitude upheld her Standards, this woman was formidable. But now that she has gone abroad unto every corner of the land, she stumbleth. For surely it is written in the scrolls that ruling multitudes requires a wisdom not given to all.

And the Pharisees spake amongst themselves, saying, Jeremiah’s tongue drippeth with falsehood and spittle. He hides intention within his threadbare cloak. And he means to spend gold that belongs to others.

And nobody paid any attention, because they failed maths at scribe school.

And the Elders rose up and said to the young people, If ye vouch for Jeremiah, he will bring great wailing. And perhaps even gnashing of teeth. Do ye not remember the plague of ferrets in the 1970s?

And the young people said, What the fuck is the 1970s?

And the Elders spake again, and said to the young people, Hark, for he gave solace in olden times to the I.R.A.

And the young people said, The what?

And the young people said, Jeremiah will bring us prosperity by taking money from those who toil greatly. Surely we will not have to lift a finger but profit from the sweat of others. And he will break the engines of war. The Trident shall be blunted and cast to the bottom of the sea. And he showeth respect for all peoples, even unto Gypos and other assorted scum and weirdos.

And the Elders tore the clothes from their breast and lamented sorely.

And it came to pass that the Islamites came into the land, with the sword, and engines of destruction. And many of the heads of the faithful flopped unto the floor. And great was the lamentation.

And the High Priestess waxed exceeding wroth and said to the people, I shall right the transgressions and take sword and fire to the Islamites. And there came again pollsters from the temple, who said, Will the people not vote for her in this hour of need?

And the multitude of the Tiptonites heedeth not at all.

And it came to pass that the potsherds where thrown on the ground to be counted.

And the Elders went up to vote, as did the young people. And the young people were as a mighty host. And in the hours of darkness there was much counting. And there came in the morning news that the High Priestess had vanquished the prophet Jeremiah but only by a ferret's whisker. And the High Priestess was super-pissed. And in her vexation she gnashed her teeth verily.

And there was great carousing amidst the young horde. And they imbibed strong wine, and did feast upon suckling kebabs and the streets did run with urine.
And of the pollsters there was no sign. For as usual, they had fucked up mightily and fucked off.

And the people saw Jeremiah and said, surely this man has won? Doth he not sayeth so?

And there was great murmuring among the Elders. And they said unto themselves, Fear not. For the High Priestess doth but prepare the way for the one who is greater than she.

And they said, Behold, for the hour of the redeemer is upon us. And his name shall be called Bright, the Prince of Light. His hair will shine like spun gold. And they cried in one voice, Boris the Redeemer.

And the young people said, Oh, fuck. And the Pharisees said, Oh fuck.

And the Lord saw the whole thing, laughed and went back to playing golf (three under par).  

And then the people said, Lord, what shall we do regarding Brexit? For henceforth the High Priestess shall be as weak as a newborn ferret with a gammy leg. How shall we hope for continued access to the single market?

And the Lord sayeth, Looks like you are all well and truly, fucked.

So endeth the lesson......

Saturday, 10 June 2017

Tis National Taser Day

Tipton celebrates national Taser Day! The mayor of Tipton, Mr Enoch ‘Baby Doc’ Vowel proudly encouraged Tipton denizens to take part in the celebration of Taser inspired festivities and inaugurated Tipton’s free ‘Taser Booth’ in the High Street. Citizens can now receive over 500,000 volts totally gratis in what is described as the ultimate hair-raising experience. Within 15 minutes of the booth becoming live, a queue stretching down the High Street had formed and a carnival-like atmosphere descended upon the populace like a miasma of doom. A lifelong resident of the soporific  town, Mrs Edna O’Mugumbo, had this to say as she snaked through the grime and vermin infested street: “Oooh yes, it reminds me of the war when we had to queue for a thimbleful of eggs and rat droppings as that nice Mr Hitler rained down incendiaries,  high explosive and Rudolph Hess upon our scrofula encrusted heads".

Bring out your dad
Later today, gangs of Taser laden thugs will roam the begrimed streets looking for the hapless elderly with heart conditions. Mr Vowel proudly announced, “It will do the old folk a power of good to receive a high voltage jolt across the chest”. When asked about the possibility of deaths as a consequence of Taser-related japes, Vowel exposited thusly: “This time of year is always a bumper period for elderly demise and we see no reason why this shouldn’t continue. This initiative is in no way connected with the council led plan to reduce the spending on old age benefits by 90%. This will be achieved by natural wastage”.

Mr Khan, of Mr Khan’s Cheap, Crap, Emporium of Total Shit, was delighted and enthused at the prospect of dumping loads of cheap, tacky, Chi damaged, but highly effective Tasers, on the general public.

Little Tommy Atkins (of no fixed abode) had already converted his latest widget/fidget spinner- ‘Malcolm the Magnificent’ into a deadly Taser of ultimate destruction. “Yea it’s great, innit. I can chuck it into a crowd and watch as it causes a vast swathe of writhing twitching bodies, innit. I haven’t had this much fun since Kim un-Jong (no relation) visited the Principality and personally bestowed unto me the ultimate accolade: 'Medal for not dying of malnutrition in a totalitarian state".

Nuff Said.

Tiny Tim at the 'Medal Cemetery'

Thursday, 8 June 2017

Operation Snowflake

There is a part of society, mostly young, but not exclusively so, that are self centred, self seeking,  unrepentant and entitled. They criticise the older generation: we have destroyed economic security; we have robbed the wealth so the young will remain poor; we are smug hypocrites that secretly control the world! Haha, haha haha, haha (that's supposedly diabolical laughter). They seem to forget that the vast majority of us older folk are entirely powerless to affect and influence wider economic forces. If we have economic security it's because we worked bloody hard for it.  We, as a collective, have not conspired to ensure that younger generations are economically shafted. Destiny lies within the hands of the individual. The world is indeed a tough place, but it has always been so. No one profits from whining. Endeavour and hard work are no guarantee to success, but sitting on your arse whingeing and moaning achieves nowt but frustration and inaction. Go do shit.

Tuesday, 6 June 2017

Tuesday's Bollocks

The above abstract snatched from a 'research paper' is clearly a spoof and penned by two philosophy professors under assumed names. They claim no expertise in the area of 'gender studies' and made no effort to research the topic in hand, whatsoever. The difference between my particular brand of madness and the above is that the above was published in a supposed academically respectable, open access, journal. A journal which operates a peer review process. Peer review is the Gold Standard for weeding out poor quality papers and downright fraud. Or indeed pranks carried out by academics with a wicked sense of humour.

The paper managed to get published in a journal which operates the pay to publish model. In this case, the cost of publishing an article is met by the author(s). For the privilege, you should expect to pay about US$600. The viewing public, just a small clutch of academics, can access the journal article for free. Compare this to the established publishing method where the author pays nothing.

There is nothing intrinsically wrong with the pay to publish model if it operates correctly and abides by rigorous academic review standards. I wrote an article a while back about the pay to view publishing method where I illustrated a few of its pitfalls. You can access it here.

If the abstract cited is a foretaste of what is to come, the main body of the article should be a hoot and a masterpiece of derision and quiet absurdity. And frankly, we are not disappointed. Consider these choice snippets. The opening sentence.......
The androcentric scientific and meta-scientific evidence that the penis is the male reproductive organ is considered overwhelming and largely uncontroversial.

And this....
The penis vis-à-vis maleness is an incoherent construct. We argue that the conceptual penis is better understood not as an anatomical organ but as a gender-performative, highly fluid social construct.

Manspreading — a complaint levied against men for sitting with their legs spread wide — is akin to raping the empty space around him.

Burn me now, for surely I am a sinner.

The conceptual penis presents significant problems for gender identity and reproductive identity within social and family dynamics, is exclusionary to disenfranchised communities based upon gender or reproductive identity, is an enduring source of abuse for women and other gender-marginalized groups and individuals, is the universal performative source of rape, and is the conceptual driver behind much of climate change.

Climate change and gender studies- of course, there must be a coherent connection. Why didn't I notice it before? 

The paper continues with 3,000 words of unmitigated drivel and nonsense, all in a similar vein. And so it goes on. The paper is patently ridiculous and ridiculous by intention, essentially arguing that the penis shouldn’t be thought of as the male genital organ but as damaging social construction. The authors place a lot of jargon-laced crap that is consistent with this kind of ‘gender studies' insanity/inanity, such as: 'post-structuralist discursive gender theory’ and ‘gender-performative, highly fluid social construct’.

Although the paper is obviously absurd it did hit the necessary trigger points for publication in a ‘gender studies’ journal. The main thrust of the learned piece is easy understood despite the impenetrable jargon: maleness is bad and the penis even more so. The penis is a nasty phallocentric hegemonic cudgel berating wimmin everywhere and doubly so in malaria infested Congo. From there we can earnestly argue that the penis is irrevocably linked to global warming through mechanisms involving the rape of the ozone layer as the member thrusts skywards, glistening and moist on a rampant rampage of sticky tumescence (steady Flaxen). Here is the relevant passage in the paper relating penises and global warming. Concerning the penis: an enduring source of abuse for women and other gender-marginalised groups and individuals, is the universal performative source of rape, and the conceptual driver behind much of climate change.

One of the esteemed reviewers raved thusly: “It capturs [sic] the issue of hypermasculinity through a nonlinear process”. Makes perfect sense especially after drinking 15 pints of Auld Ferret, superior ale.

The fact that this piece was published underscores how ridiculous ‘gender studies’ has become. A field driven by ideology and hate propagated by fanatical feminists of both genders. Hang on a second. A correction is required as Facebook recognises at least 50 distinct genders. Don’t want to offend those who consider themselves, gender fluid. The paper is so farcical and caricatured it beggars belief how anything of such poor academic standing could have passed through the peer review and editorial filters and manage to achieve publication in a ‘serious academic journal’.     

Now, gentle readers, you know why I like burning stuff, and occasionally, people. Arse.