Alastair's Blog

Return to:  Blog | Articles | Videos RSS feed

On the Olympic magic dust still sprinkling; my charity swear-off with Malcolm Tucker; and Boris mania

Posted on 11 September 2012 | 4:09pm

I was really determined not to drone on about the Olympics any more, but having just been to City trader BGC’s charity day, I feel I have to. Because the Olympic spirit was alive and well and wafting around spreading its goodness whenever an Olympian or Paralympian ventured near.

BGC has had a September 11 charity day ever since losing colleagues in the terror attacks on New York eleven years ago. Today, the 11th anniversary, was my third or fourth charity day as part of the Leukaemia and Lymphoma Research team, one of 25 charities who take a share of all the profits made by BGC trades around the world. And the mood was better than ever, and again a lot of that was down to the Olympics.

I was joined today by Gary Lineker, whose son had leukaemia but is now fit and well, his fellow former England international Geoff Thomas, who has also survived leukaemia, and two Olympic gold medallists, long jumper Greg Rutherford and cyclist Dani King. Their connection with leukaemia is, thankfully, marginal bordering on non-existent, but I bumped into them at the Olympic village a few weeks ago and they were in that state of post victory bliss when they said pretty much to anything that anyone asked of them, so I asked if they would join us, and they said yes.

To be honest, I had my doubts they would turn up. Oh me of little faith. Not only did they turn up; they were brilliant. Dani managed to do a 800million yen trade, and looked rather more panicky than she does hitting top speed on the bike. Greg’s smile never left his face from the moment he arrived to the moment he left. And people just loved to get a touch of those medals.

Meanwhile I got into a bit of bother after doing joint trading with Peter Capaldi aka Malcolm Tucker, who was there for Barnardo’s. The trading bit went fine, and I did a 500 million deal with Singapore – I think – before Peter aka Malcolm and I gave advice to the ‘property derivatives’ desk on how to improve their image. Traders around the world should now look forward to calls from the ‘future residential opportunities investment fund.’

Then someone had the bright idea of Peter aka Malcolm and I having a sponsored swear-off, which went down very well with the testosterone-charged trading floor, some of whom stopped shouting to listen to the twin torrents of f words. I suggested to Peter aka Malcolm for example that his f—-ing programme and its f—-ing anti politics so-called f—-ing jokes were pretty well f—-ed by the coalition and quite frankly the whole f—-ing show is f—-ed to f—-ing f—-ery and he and his f—-ing scriptwriters might as well just f— off. Peter aka Malcolm hit back, saying he was f—-ing offended that a f—-ing unemployed hasbeen like me dared to f—-ing suggest he had f—-ing writers to write his f—-ing sweary bits and …. and then the microphone went dead, and so the traders couldn’t hear him,  and so I was declared the winner.

They clapped and laughed and we all felt very pleased with ourselves until we were told that the mikes were cut because our little exchange was being played not just around the trading floors, but into the creche downstairs! Oh f—-ety f—–k, we echoed. So apologies to the kids and their mums and dads, and anyone else who took offence. Our only defence is that the traders looked in need of a laugh after a day spent trying to humour celebs, and we were raising money for our respective charities.

Meanwhile, in every interview I did, I was asked about Boris Johnson and whether I thought on the back of the Olympics he had become a threat to David Cameron. Quite clearly he has, and the more he denies any prospect of challenging the PM, then as with Michael Heseltine and Mrs Thatcher, the more people will think it may happen.

I still find the concept of Boris as PM not just comical but a but dangerous. But then again, I never thought he would be Mayor; I never thought he would be re-elected. I never thought we would see the day when he made a speech that was received as rapturously as those he has uttered in these last few weeks. So the truth is that anything can happen, and as Mr Cameron prepares for a tricky party conference, Boris is certainly on his long list of problems.

  • Dweasle

    Reminds me of a story – possibly true – of a dockyard worker wrestling with a piece of machinery, evidently broken. His summary: “F- it. The f-ing f-ers f-ed!”

  • Olli Issakainen

    Cameron the loser.
    The coalition will not be able to balance the structural deficit by 2015.
    Neoliberal austerity is not working. It is only making more people unemployed and increasing the borrowing.
    The era of growth based on financial and retail industries is over.
    The era of globalisation and neoliberalism is over.
    Messrs Cameron and Osborne do not get this.
    But Boris Johnson is not the answer. He is too unpredictable to be a PM. His private life would also come back to haunt him.
    Ralph Miliband once stated that Labour would never dare to take on the establisment.
    Now it is time to prove him wrong!
    We need proper taxes for multinationals and rich individuals.
    Labour must provide an alternative on the economy. We must shift distribution of wealth to middle and low-wage workers.
    2015 election will be about radical change. It will be about responsible capitalism and fairness.
    Oxford historian David Priestland has said that the merchant class rules alone in the west.
    Blairites tell that elections are won from the centre ground.
    But Hollande won in France by promising a 75% tax rate on the wealthy and a Tobin tax on financial transactions.
    Neoliberalism has failed on its promises. People are now worried about their jobs, benefits and debt.
    We can afford to abandon the failed centre ground of past decades.
    Economy is shrinking and tax receipts falling. Corporations are not investing.
    Living standards are falling.
    Tory right wants even deeper cuts and more deregulation.
    But as the Cambridge economist Ha-Joon Chang says, DEREGULATION, TAX CUTS and AUSTERITY have never worked.
    They have only shifted wealth from the poor to the rich.
    We now need leadership.
    David Cameron is not providing it.
    The qualities that define leadership have changed.
    People want leaders with INTEGRITY, DECISIVENESS and good COMMUNICATION skills.
    Ed Miliband is now ahead of Mr Cameron in approval ratings.
    People have realised that instead of style we need substance.

  • Olli Issakainen

    Cameron the loser.
    The coalition will not be able to balance the structural deficit by 2015.
    Neoliberal austerity is not working. It is only making more people unemployed and increasing the borrowing.
    The era of growth based on financial and retail industries is over.
    The era of globalisation and neoliberalism is over.
    Messrs Cameron and Osborne do not get this.
    But Boris Johnson is not the answer. He is too unpredictable to be a PM. His private life would also come back to haunt him.
    Ralph Miliband once stated that Labour would never dare to take on the establisment.
    Now it is time to prove him wrong!
    We need proper taxes for multinationals and rich individuals.
    Labour must provide an alternative on the economy. We must shift distribution of wealth to middle and low-wage workers.
    2015 election will be about radical change. It will be about responsible capitalism and fairness.
    Oxford historian David Priestland has said that the merchant class rules alone in the west.
    Blairites tell that elections are won from the centre ground.
    But Hollande won in France by promising a 75% tax rate on the wealthy and a Tobin tax on financial transactions.
    Neoliberalism has failed on its promises. People are now worried about their jobs, benefits and debt.
    We can afford to abandon the failed centre ground of past decades.
    Economy is shrinking and tax receipts falling. Corporations are not investing.
    Living standards are falling.
    Tory right wants even deeper cuts and more deregulation.
    But as the Cambridge economist Ha-Joon Chang says, DEREGULATION, TAX CUTS and AUSTERITY have never worked.
    They have only shifted wealth from the poor to the rich.
    We now need leadership.
    David Cameron is not providing it.
    The qualities that define leadership have changed.
    People want leaders with INTEGRITY, DECISIVENESS and good COMMUNICATION skills.
    Ed Miliband is now ahead of Mr Cameron in approval ratings.
    People have realised that instead of style we need substance.

  • Ian Smart

    Let’s be honest, the most dangerous thing about Boris is that, electorally, we’re scared of him

  • Ian Smart

    Let’s be honest, the most dangerous thing about Boris is that, electorally, we’re scared of him

  • Anonymous

    I hope Alastair is only talking up Johnson’s chances to get at Cameron. I’d be sorry if he really thought someone so crudely out for himself as Johnson really stood a chance. Taking the credit for the Olympics was the easy bit. Blabbing to camera he could always do. He can only keep this up for as long as he is not asked to do anything. So let’s see how far his talent for travelling on the coat tails of others gets him.

  • Anonymous

    I hope Alastair is only talking up Johnson’s chances to get at Cameron. I’d be sorry if he really thought someone so crudely out for himself as Johnson really stood a chance. Taking the credit for the Olympics was the easy bit. Blabbing to camera he could always do. He can only keep this up for as long as he is not asked to do anything. So let’s see how far his talent for travelling on the coat tails of others gets him.

  • Anonymous

    Oh dear England, one down at the moment – no doubt there is a lot of effing going on in jolly olde England at the present time. And also the usual – questioning the parentage of the ref, plus also calling him a moo-moo part.

  • Anonymous

    Oh dear England, one down at the moment – no doubt there is a lot of effing going on in jolly olde England at the present time. And also the usual – questioning the parentage of the ref, plus also calling him a moo-moo part.

  • Anonymous

    Dockyard? How about a family get together in a front room, gathering around the telly to watch a sporting event,
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2NsHTuhPLW4

    Now that is top drawer blaspheming for you. And he is saying feck me pharaoh, and yes, I was puzzled with that too.

  • Anonymous

    Dockyard? How about a family get together in a front room, gathering around the telly to watch a sporting event,
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2NsHTuhPLW4

    Now that is top drawer blaspheming for you. And he is saying feck me pharaoh, and yes, I was puzzled with that too.

  • Anonymous

    BIG BIG BLIMEY! Just watched Tom Jones sing on telly now, AND playing a guitar at the same time! Honest, on Rob Brydon’s show just now.
    Will be on iplayer later, no doubt about it, just check this link later, ladies,
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b01mrlxn
    …and some gents, no doubt.

  • Anonymous

    BIG BIG BLIMEY! Just watched Tom Jones sing on telly now, AND playing a guitar at the same time! Honest, on Rob Brydon’s show just now.
    Will be on iplayer later, no doubt about it, just check this link later, ladies,
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b01mrlxn
    …and some gents, no doubt.

  • Anonymous

    Footie and fucking aside, I have just posted this comment to Andy, round the houses, at his interview here, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fxQCqJvjdoA
    Quote, meeself,
    “Well done Andy, laid Fred Perry teeshirt ghost to rest. He will be proud of you, upstairs.
    Talking about Fred Perry teeshirts, a bit of northern soul for you Andy, just for you, copy paste and serve,
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9qMHJb2Q4hc
    Tidy Andy, love from Wales/Pays de Galles. Lan yr Albanwyr, yn wyr! (trans: up the scots, too right!)”

    It’s got the wotsit off our backs, us men nationally, but Virginia Wade from 1977 is quite a while ago almost too, ladies…

  • Anonymous

    Footie and fucking aside, I have just posted this comment to Andy, round the houses, at his interview here, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fxQCqJvjdoA
    Quote, meeself,
    “Well done Andy, laid Fred Perry teeshirt ghost to rest. He will be proud of you, upstairs.
    Talking about Fred Perry teeshirts, a bit of northern soul for you Andy, just for you, copy paste and serve,
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9qMHJb2Q4hc
    Tidy Andy, love from Wales/Pays de Galles. Lan yr Albanwyr, yn wyr! (trans: up the scots, too right!)”

    It’s got the wotsit off our backs, us men nationally, but Virginia Wade from 1977 is quite a while ago almost too, ladies…

  • Michele

    I like ‘f—-ety f—–k’ best.

    Good to hear BGC have a workplace creche although I always think it’s sad when I see babies being hauled around on the tube at 7.30am.
    :-( yep, dinosaur-ish.

  • Michele

    I like ‘f—-ety f—–k’ best.

    Good to hear BGC have a workplace creche although I always think it’s sad when I see babies being hauled around on the tube at 7.30am.
    :-( yep, dinosaur-ish.

  • Anonymous

    Sad? Its also annoying for the rest of us.

  • Anonymous

    Well done Andy Burnham!

    All those years of ‘fobbing off’ by various governments and the collusion between numerous groups to ‘paint’ a picture of deceit and misinformation.

    Also well done to all those in digging and digging until the truth was told earlier today late, many years late but better late than never.

    To think all those responsible have probably retired on good pensions just like Duckenfield received an ill-health pension and retirement at the age of 46 when in fact he should have been sacked!

  • Anonymous

    Yes KD. Seen the twitter link of Boris putting foot in mouth from 2004, with the truth eventually coming out today? This is the link,
    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/media/in-one-article-boris-manages-to-offend-an-entire-city-shy-and-his-boss-6159847.html
    Now does anyone want to think of having a PM like that? Nero comes to my mind. And I don’t believe for a moment that the Thatch was duped by South Yorkshire’s Chief Constable for a moment, it was state corruption from top to bottom here, as was obvious from the start in 1989. The Sheffield fire brigade come out with credit, who said at the time a spade is a spade, but as for the rest, oh dear!
    We won’t hear the last of this. They do convict WWII nazies still to this day, don’t they?

  • Anonymous

    …furthermore, pity Paxo is not on Newsnight tonight. He doesn’t take prisoners when he gets his teeth into something. Hope Kirsty does a good job, because this is a shameful episode in Brit history, makes us all look like tossers to the world.

  • Anonymous

    Yes, looks like Hodgson wanted to call that ref’s mother a sport, it seemed to me, looking at his eyes…

  • Anonymous

    And why is that? Because we think the electorate itself can be duped. But I think that only applies to London and the South East.

  • Anonymous

    Talking sport, as you do, especially when it is played in the right spirit, and with the right water, as Keith Floyd’s dad said to him once, looking forward to the Scarlets visiting in the Atlantic west of blowey Ireland Saturday afternoon, Connacht, on TG4, 3pm KO, hopefully pirated… Here is them up in Glasgie last Friday evening,
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/rugby-union/19538855
    And Floyd and Ray Gravell, when Keith visited these parts,
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rzbAl0Auk04

    Both much missed. We are poorer, culturally, without them. And notice naughty Keith said the eff word at 6:00, and was edited out, rumour has it, locally… Tidy Keith. : )

  • Anonymous

    And furthermore Alastair, I know exactly where I was when this was going on, round Sharma’s house Vyrnwy Drive, Saltney, Chester, to see my mates, us three RAF lads, and Steve from south of the Tyne working for the MOD, and I could tell straight off… well, I better keep my words from thoughts then still.
    Kings Cross, Zubrugger, all high up brit knobs were involved with that too, carrying on as if brit life was cheap, if they weren’t tory planks.
    Fffffff, king ELLLL! Thatch the Twat!!!

  • Anonymous

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-19567698

    But thanks beeb for leaving the thought why they had different surnames, you completely usual beeb twats! Why didn’t you just call her Joan? SE idiots!

  • Anonymous

    Come on Alastair, where are you now? Update and moderate us idiots here, please. I have been especially blood vessel bulging today, so don’t worry, I won’t mind you put some of them in the dustbin, I won’t mind, as always. Please feel free to be one’s editor, put it in the paper cutter – what is that machine called again, paper something it is, where James Bond sticks them back together again, paper, paper… sorry, it’s gone, HOLD ON, that is it, in the paper shredder, like weetabix.

  • Anonymous

    Alastair, see Kelvin is getting his knickers in a twist, when now he finally realises he was the Goebbels to the Thatch.
    He makes me spew he does.
    http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/6/67/Hillsborough_disaster_Sun.jpg
    And in every interview since then, he has carried on the same, as if the Thatch still had her hand up his arse, saying her right things.
    He is a knob, and a fucking disgrace!

  • Anonymous

    bugger, still can’t find that clip ol’ fellas and fillies on the Soulboy film extras and advisors. But this will do,
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F3qjPxLGIpU

    That will do for now.

  • Anonymous

    If Mightymark happens to be reading, I would like to point out a great article in the Guardian today regarding Hayek (one of the main free market thinkers of the 20th century) and his view on healthcare. Told you I’m not the only free marketeer who can believe in universal healthcare:
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2012/sep/12/paul-ryan-enslaves-friedrich-hayek-road-serfdom?CMP=twt_gu

  • Anonymous

    Alastair, Delme Thomas, three times Lion, captain of Llanelli when we beat the All Blacks in 1972, has just turned seventy, and had a programme docu about him on welsh telly the other night, and available on their CLIC iplayer, for the next month. But in welsh, with no owl. An owl means there is english subtitles when you click on the owl button when available.
    http://www.s4c.co.uk/clic/e_level2.shtml?programme_id=506284804
    Have bumped into him several times over the years, and no need now to point out to you Alastair, that he is a fine fellow.

  • Anonymous

    A little guardian article for you Mr Campbell. I suggest you either read it, or print it out, scrunch it up, then put it in your pipe and smoke it:
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2012/sep/12/adonis-plan-for-state-schools
    The message is what I have said all along – Tony Blair changed schools for the better with his academy initiative. Free schools is a further development along similar principles – diversity of choice, competition for complacent incumbents.
    Why don’t labour take credit for these reforms that Blair started, rather than slag off those who continue them?! Michael Gove is the best minister in the government by far.
    It should have been the same thing with NHS reform though I do agree the coalition has made a right pig’s breakfast of that one.

  • Michele

    I’m looking around at various twitterings and postings about Hillsborough here and there etc.

    I hope everyone remembers who was in power in ’89 and that even the
    Ambulance Service had been on strike that year.
    Why would they
    do that?
    Could it have been a forerunner of what we are seeing being
    done in the here and now?
    Cuts in numbers, dissing of the members from those ‘on high’?
    How are people supposed to maintain the highest standards of efficiency when they are forced to work extra hours due to shortage of manpower and work reactively instead of in planned ways?
    Let’s have an answer to more questions than the one about a 50p tax rate; l wonder how much MPs like the idea of there being less of them.
    When manpower levels mean the ONLY method can be reactiveness just wth point is there in knowalling ad infinitum?
    Kelvin MacKenzie has claimed he got his 1989 ‘info’ from Sheffield MP Irvine Patick (Con).
    I hope everyone remembers who was in power in ’89 and that even the Ambulance Service had been forced to strike that year.
    Why would they do that? Could it have been a forerunner of what we are seeing being done in the way of cuts in numbers in our Emergency Svcs in the here and now?
    So …. Dave should have a word with Theresa IF he means a word of the tripe spoken today. Stop gaining from others mistakes Dave and start learning by thinking about them.

    The Police were badly led? Great, let’s in future recruit all sorts of ambitious people to come in over the heads of experienced Police.
    Why not, there might not be Freemasonry nowadays but there’s sure as hell other sorts of handshake (politically-inspired [aka motivated] Commissioners as well geeeeeeeeeee).

    CamSham has spoken today about “….. the failure of the state to protect their loved ones ….” ….. same point … who had been in power for ten years?
    He should spit it out instead of leaving it open for numpties to presume he’s referring to those he is not associated with.
    Who the hell owned and ‘maintained’ the terraces?
    Private or State?

    Statements have been ‘altered’ – lots of documents get altered, it’s not by default a cynical situation (presuming it to have been so is cynicism itself).
    Why did we have Tippex? Oh I say, do I mean ‘correction fluid’?
    There is no excuse for opportunists making the assumption that alterations were all for cynical reasons; do we know what they were altered from – as well as to?

    BJ might have made his comments from sheer snobbery; the fact remains that such tragedies ended with all-seated stadia.
    Let’s STOP blaming all the humans who did their best for others and blame those that did not enable them.

  • Anonymous

    Sorry to harp on Alastair, but Hillsborough mirrors Aberfan from 1966, which had a much bigger and younger death toll. That was in a Labour government, which did not control the situation. Many millions of pounds was donated to the families from all around the world, which ended up being used by British National Coal Board to remove the tips on Aberfan and other places, not what was intended as donated. Gwyn Thomas,
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8gyb8ZBkcrU
    A local lad’s attempt to explain it,
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OVsxVo26AoU

    Government are fucks, any colour.

    I remember this day well, I had measles and was home from school, laying on the front room couch, while my mother and Marge from next door held their hand to their mouths, not knowing what to say, in front of our black and white telly. I was four and ten months old, just started my first year in primary school, and I remember them standing in front of me, confused with what was exciting, in their flowing 1960’s skirts, in front of me shocked. I am not bullshitting, I remember it well, be frightened if you want, but I have a great memory since I was two, but this has really stuck with me, with Marge and my mother Brenda in tears, as they watched the special news report, in black and white.

  • Anonymous

    Don’t mind me, I will push it on, as long as I can, until no doubt someone else will come along to do so too. That is how it works, one after the other, emotions fried, done our own felt job and retire, burnt out, to be behind the next other.
    That is how it is, for everything, you can’t keep up that pace all your life. Pass the baton on.

  • Michele

    Oh poor you eh?

  • Michele

    I’m always amused by ‘advisOr’,.
    Is it deemed right posh? Will we have waitOrs next and did doctors evolve from doctErs?

    It’d a word about a doEr, not a bloody doOr.

  • Michele

    What a pathetic cheapening comparison.
    Wrong word to exploit here, move along please.

  • Michele

    Please don’t lump us all together.
    A few people were silly enough to be manipulated by a ‘HACK’ (caps as he’s now chief gossip columnist).
    Other papers picked up on that trashy rag’s spiteful distortion and the snowball rolled.

    There was less than 3% difference between BJ/KL’s first choice votes; rounded = 51%/49%.
    Not enough for an outright win so second choice votes were counted and KL won on those but their value is not the same so even 45%/55% didn’t stack up in the way needed.

    Protest votes as first choice are what spoiled things for us again, protest votes from people reacting to the Press like poodles.
    Protest votes ‘achieved’ the nationa coalescence in May ’10, protest votes ‘achieved’ BJ back in London City Hall in ’12.

    The Standard hack’s reactionary spite won.
    To take things to an extreme (something he’s adept at) he’s not all that different from the manipulators winding people up in Libya now about a stupid film (from a stupid stupid ‘director’).

    Someone here posted about BJ spending his first term cutting the pink ribbons on Ken’s long-term projects.
    He’s spending his second basking in the Olympics but clouds are looming.
    During BJ’s first term the massive transport improvements achieved by Ken (via his ability to work WITH unions and his nouse/respect re engineering) continued to result in around 2/3% delays.
    This quarter they are approaching 6%.

  • Michele

    That was a tad long-winded and also inaccurate!

    First choice results were 44% / 40.3% (another 15.7% ‘protested’ among the other five ‘hopefuls’).

    Brian Paddick has been gracious in defeat.

  • Michele

    We all know who started academies, I’ve not seen any criticism of them from anyone except about the exponential spreading of them – manipulative shedding of Govt control to any Job that comes along.
    I have criticised the change in Ofsted ‘input’ (the reduction in visits and the acceptance of teachers’ grading via the net).

    Free schools are a different situation (read faith). We know the Toby Young-type will be helped.

    We all know who built better buildings and found ways to fund them through the future so the children of the tax payers of NOW can enjoy the benefits rather than have their input ‘stored’ then spent elsewhere anyway.
    We also know who scrapped that scheme in its first month of housekeeping.

  • Michele

    JH was looking a nervous wreck at PMQs yesterday.

  • Graham

    That made my side hurt just reading it, and now I have the scene ingrained in my mind for the rest of the day.
    Might I suggest a re-match for Comic Relief, AC. I would’ve suggested Children in Need, but you seem to have that base covered already.
    Thanks for making my day, that swear-off was priceless to read about.

  • Michele

    Suzanne Moore nails it today LOL :
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2012/sep/12/boris-johnson-no-laughing-matter

    ……………….Hilarious, if you actually want a Borisconi in charge. Not so funny if you don’t…………………..

    …………………His achievements as mayor have been rather like the bikes: unwieldy,
    expensive, not his own idea, but heavily branded as if they were………………

    NB: for clarity, rentabikes were Ken’s very good idea.
    Their implementation (as lumpen but mobile advertising for Barclays) was not.
    Just what is their point in central London only? We all have Travelcards and hop on hop off any mode of transport to get anywhere in and around town uber quickly (some of us even walk, there’s s much to see).
    It’s in the outer zone that transport is more difficult (only made so because of all our beautiful woods and parks which are not sliced-through by transport routes so bikes would serve purposes there, plus advertising could be local)..

  • Michele

    Cor ….. butch.
    Pudoopyerdooks AC (or pirouette too).

  • Michele

    Have just heard a snippet on radio that might not have anything to do with this match and disaster.
    It was about a Final being held at a ground despite disputes about the choice as the ground in question had failed seveeral safety tests.

    As such a fact has not been mentioned in the last two days (either in general discussions with paid commentators or announcements from Andy Burnham and Jack Straw) I’m doubtful.
    Could I be wrong though?

  • Anonymous

    Oops, you’re right Michele. What was I thinking of. What I meant was the brigade got the seriousness of the situation as soon as they arrived, which was lacking that day. Sorry for that.

  • Anonymous

    Oops, got it wrong, subtitles are avaiable – just click S, then English Subtitles.

  • Michele

    1951 – 1964 Conservative
    1964 – on Labour

    That was a huge fund
    http://www.nuffield.ox.ac.uk/politics/aberfan/adf.htm

  • reaguns

    Really? He is usually one of those smug, cocky ones who carries on no matter what happens, I cannot imagine him having normal human feelings like nerves.
    Cameron, Obama, Clegg, Romney, Huhne, Osborne – every single one of them strikes me as the sort of person who could find out that people had starved to death that day because of their policies, then brush it off and sleep like a baby.
    I didn’t feel that way about Tony Blair, I believe he would have worried himself sick about such an outcome, and he would have the intellectual honesty to ask himself if it was his fault.

  • reaguns

    Free schools are different than academies, but all offer more freedom, diversity and choice, and therefore put pressure on existing models, not just the comps but private schools too.
    In my ideal scenario, a costly one I admit, every pupil would have a choice whether he goes to a comp, free school, academy etc.
    Would I bring back 11 plus and grammar schools… I don’t know, but I’d certainly ban public and private schools before I’d ban grammars.
    Andrew Neil reckons Clement Attlee should have nationalised the public schools rather than industry.

  • reaguns

    Exactly. Hard enough to get a space on the train without squeezing round a brat who takes up more space than one person yet I suspect travels for free.
    It doesn’t mean I don’t care about kids – I’d build wider roads and remove the tax on petrol so that they could get driven to creche in comfort.

  • Anonymous

    Being looking at Kelvin’s twats from yesterday, and I still don’t think he get’s it. That Sun journalist told what went on, with Kelvin getting excited how to pump the story up, since Liverpool as a place was in a big downer, and thought ignorantly that no one would care.
    This journalist, link,
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-south-yorkshire-19507065
    As I said, Kelvin was a mouth piece for the London “fascist” torys of then, and he still can’t see it,
    http://minority-thought.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/06/on-choosing-right-target-1.jpg

    And since when did Kelvin think you were George W. Bush??? He is quite a twit, a sock-puppet.

  • Michele

    I think you think I was referring to ‘spade’?
    I could be wrong and you realise it was ‘Nazis’.

    The latter is ever so easy to use for the ultimate insult but cheapens it imhoo.
    Anyway, you’re entitled to say what you wish, think what you wish and not be surprised that I’m not on the same bandwagon.

    If my post about it being this ground that was deemed unsafe anyway (and for any Final crowd never mind this one) have we heard a dickiebird about those whose decision that was and who ignored public outcry about the choice?
    FA perhaps?
    So private (as well as state) let the fans down.
    Come on Dave, spit it out lad.

    Hindsight is useful but often exploited.
    I was full of admiration for Andy Burnham withstanding the booing crowds at a match a couple of years ago but I’m now watching the gloss slip off.
    There is NO excuse for staying silent this week while grieving people show their outrage for allegations of hooliganism at the time make out that it was their loved ones that had been so-described.
    There is NO excuse for letting that even stay in the air, it’s cowardice to let people stay so offended.
    Hooligan elements were present, I doubt many of them were victims themselves.

    Conflating things gets us nowhere and just means yet more erroneous castigation can be thrown at those who could only try to stop what was happening (while none is thrown at the owners of the ramshackle stadium, its terraces or the Govt of the time that had set the precedent for what the present one is doing …. cutting Police numbers).

    I’m being objective, sorry for that, I prefer doing any crying in private.

  • Michele

    You’ll have to excuse my bad mood this week Ehtch, I’m still as sick as a parrot at missing the Red Arrows on Monday :-(

  • Anonymous

    Yes it was Michele, as it says, which now must be equivalent to about £25million in todays money.
    The main heartbreaking page from that site is of the accounts of the survivors, young and old,
    http://www.nuffield.ox.ac.uk/politics/aberfan/chap1.htm
    And as Gwyn Thomas mentions above, men at the coal faces are half-expecting the possiblity of their jobs blowing up in their faces, but this was an event the worst of hell had sent.

  • Anonymous

    …or move The City out of the city? Why don’t they do that? It is a clogged up hell hole nine-to-five, Monday to Friday, and a ghost town at the weekend.
    And why doesn’t The City these days work 24hrs, but OK, for only 5 days, on shifts? That surely would bring in more coin. Just some sky-blue lateral thinking, that is all.

  • Anonymous

    Now the old fool is claiming he first twatted aroundabouts here Kate’s pic on french hols, ten hours ago! I saw them early yesterday morning, on an italian site in italian, the whole lot, as per,
    http://www.lettera43.it/foto/kate-scandalo-al-sole_4367564509.htm

    Google works, if you know how to use it, advanced search and all that. And if there is any brit tits about, I want to see them too if Johnny Foreigner is going to get their mince pies on them!

  • Michele

    ‘The City’ is now mostly on/in Canary Wharf.
    Very long-hours working is the norm there, just as it is in many other types of business.
    New buildings even have isolated lighting after about 8pm that just works over areas where someone’s still present and moves with them as they walk around, not like a spotlight, just green :-)
    I loved that when I was often very very late in a fab building at Holborn.

  • Michele

    I’d imagine the Fire Brigade of the time were using the knowledge that people seem to be ignoring in the present.
    People died that need not have.
    Why is it ‘ ….let’s blame the Police?’

    The Police had not been on strike but their numbers had been shredded.
    Ambulance crews had had their own restrictions. This is from an article of Jan ’90
    “Now the police won’t just put you in
    hospital, they’ll drive you there too

    As we go to press the ambulance dispute
    is in its 4th month.”

    That displays quite succinctly the prejudice that has surrounded a lot of this retrospective ‘investigation’ and facts about First Aid delays.
    Finally, last night, someone mentioned FA culpability re using a condemned ground.

    NONE of that matters though does it?
    A few people have used Tippex or its equivalent and the ‘usual suspects’ have donned their KuKluxKlan hats to suggest stringing up the favourite and oh-so easy hate target whilst ignoring absolutely everything else.

    The key words are ‘Emergency Services’.
    Last resort, panic button, inevitably bad situations.
    Bothered about Police morale? I am.

    We can be damn sure that if there had been terrorist activity at Stratford there’d have been one, just one group blamed.

  • Anonymous

    I believe it would be due to a thing, described by one of those horrible bullshit bingo management-speak buzzwords – synergy.
    Companies in similar industries seem to do well when they are clustered near similar companies. People are more productive in such conglomerations, if that is the right word. A brilliant and even-minded economist called Tim Harford has a book “The logic of life” with a good explanation. He talks about how cities such as London and New York pay better wages than rural areas, but that the costs increase more than the wages do, but explains why people still feel the need to cluster with people in similar industries.

  • Anonymous

    The City of London is a bit of a financial ghetto though, isn’t it? They should move to Slough or Staines – that is what I would recommend, tongue in cheek. But might not be so mad, since it is near the M25-M4 intersection, near Heathrow, decent train links, on the right side for the Cotswolds, and on the easier side to get to from the Surrey stockbroker belt. Why don’t they go and set up a ghetto there, Ali G-style?
    Out of the box thinking, innit reaguns?

  • Anonymous

    Canary Wharf area is a right peculiar place at the weekend – it is like being on a set of a futuristist sci-fi movie, when all the humans have died off. Like a ghost town of a cowboy movie, but with moving CCTV cameras rather than tumbleweed.

  • Anonymous

    I didn’t notice. Well, maybe a bit…
    Feeling better now? : )

  • Anonymous

    Tidy win today at said Connacht, with a four try bonus point too. Scarlets are going places butt. And thanks to the fella that pirated TG4 irish telly channel, even if watching these sorts of links online is like looking at a game through fog.
    http://www.rabodirectpro12.com/matchcentre/14649.php
    And tidy win for Burnley too Alastair, but Swans have flagged – knew it was too good to be true to last.

  • Anonymous

    OHHH – nazies. I regard it a term for manipulating people, as that group of people tried to do all over the world in the 1920’s to mid-40’s. To me, the people that participated in this cover-up with lies and misinformation are such. And you can’t tell me different, sorry Michele.

    And by the way Michele, I spell “nazies” phonetically, always, in tribute to Winnie C – he really hated the nazies, as he called them.

  • Anonymous

    My goodness, an irish newspaper are going to publish the titty pics, and on a Sunday! That will make the Fathers choke on their afternoon tea and biscuits, after mass, oh yes.
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-19611407
    What do you say Father?
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IvvwNR3vF44

    A what Father?!? Oh that, the Pope you mean.

    But just to clear up things, it could be Monday’s edition, if they decide to do so. So pray for Kate today, paddies, for what you want….

  • Anonymous

    …furthermore Michele, this vid I watch every now and then when I want to pick my spirits up, and should explain myself with regards to nazies – vid made from the french side of Belgium, apparently, non-dutch and non-flemish and non-german too, apparently too,
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IUNpvcfB0IQ

    Very Benny Hill, ey Michele? My dark sense of humour it is, and may I state now that Frankie Boyle walks on water for me, and is now calling himself a taff these days I have noticed, with the name of Gethin Jones from the telly, apparently : ) Very funny fella, for a jock, has same humour as me, when push comes to shove.

  • Michele

    There are many types of people that manipulate others.
    Manipulation is not the same as treating specified people like vermin, separating groups for one or another characteristic whether religion, sexuality, colour, lifestyle, physical or mental disability, belief in Communism and on and on and on and on and herding and killing them.

    There is no comparison between how the Nazis that you mean eventually behaved and people that have done nothing like that, people that were stuffed from the start by shabby NONmaintained privately owned premises and cuts that Snatcher had been making for ten years to the emergency services.

    If you can’t grasp that exaggeration and inaccuracy are disrespectful to MY language, stick to your own, mess around with it as much as you like, purlease :-)

    There’s as much distortion going on now as there has been for the last 23yrs.
    Hindsight is cheap.
    Like every other occasion it’s the Police that cop the blame.
    WRONG ground was used.
    Ground was not maintained.
    Such tragedies ended with all seated …. any spark?
    Ambulance service had been on industrial action and still were 4m later, even AFTER this event.
    NObody can do what just is not do-able.

    • Ehtch

      Furthermore Michelle. ref. Peel, this makes good reading, a quite short but explatantory passage of advised lines for peelites to follow,
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peelian_Principles

      Some people are derogatory about wikipedia, but we all know what type of people they are, don’t we?

  • Anonymous

    There is a place called Kidbrooke where you will get the same experience, looks like one of those dystopian sci fi movies like Terminator or Blade Runner, or like one of those post apocalyptic computer games like Gears of War.
    Its a good place to go past to balance out left and right wing views because part of you thinks a lot of the residents should be jailed, especially those who hassle the other residents, makes you want to take a Texan approach, but then another side of you thinks “what chance has a child got growing up in a place like this” and makes you think a Scandi approach might be preferable. Tough on crime, tough on the causes of crime as a wise man once said.

  • Anonymous

    OOOHHH! Saturday it was published, funny the brit press didn’t make that clear, is it….
    http://assets.nydailynews.com/polopoly_fs/1.1160664!/img/httpImage/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_635/irish-daily-star-1.jpg

    What do you say Father Jack?
    http://puckstownlane.files.wordpress.com/2010/11/daily-star-231110.jpg?w=480&h=613
    or no doubt,
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mzgT-fg01vY

    Always tells the truth does Father Jack, maybe…

  • Anonymous

    Hellish terrible news yesterday about Nevin Spence and his brother and father, with his sister only just surviving, Alastair.
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-northern-ireland-19614688

    Just shows farming is a dangerous business at even these times. And what makes it more dangerous is being remote from Health and Safety. The H & S red tape do get a bad press, but do they send out circulars annually to tell farmers obvious dangers? Going into underground or closed containers with waste of any kind is a big danger, what with build up of methane and other gases at the expense of oxygen we need, and advice for emergency equipment to have at hand is lacking when near such – as in portable small oxygen breathing mask set-up to save anyone that falls into such. Tragic accident.

  • Anonymous

    I have many friends, and over the years, that are in the constabulary, and they, between the lines say to me that in recent decades they have been used militarily rather than a servant to the people, what Peel set them up to be. They, at the end of the day should be on our side against bigottedness, but in 1979 this somehow changed, for the worse.

    And please Michele, don’t lecture me on this, I am not for moving on this, I could see what was going on. Thatcher for electoral percentage votes from surveys never wanted to call in the military when things got bad, so she privately militarised the national police force, and here we are now, with suss pull-ups bigotted.

    • Michele

      Not lecturing or trying to move you on.
      None of it is aimed just at you.

      I’m just tired of watching hysteria rule the day on this as on so many other horrible sad events.

      It was a lovely surprising sunny day, people relaxed and enjoyed themselves, basking in the sunshine outside the ****hole of a stadium.

      The fact that this was mentioned (dared to be mentioned as part of the actual real time circumstances) was whipped up to be ‘Police blaming the victims’.

      I can’t stand hysteria and wannabe-vicitimisation.
      Facts are facts, facts contribute to the whole, facts are not displacing blame on to the victims they merely explain HOW things happened and facts inform any summation that’s worth existing.

      There were decrepit terraces in a crappy shambolic stadium, there had been Ambulance crews working to rule, there had been cuts to all Emergency services 1979-1989.
      There had been pushing and shoving, just as it happens in many other situations, 1st day of the sales etc (that is a long way from saying that the people being crushed were the people doing the shoving).

      There are lots of reasons why reports would have been changed (I edit my posts pre-uploading don ‘t you? ….. whoaaa if I thought anyone had access to first ‘drafts’ with even more illogicality in place).

      But we all know who will cop it all don’t we? It’s inevitable.
      Perhaps the Police Service needs a new motto: “We cop the lot” (and tactfully leave unsaid the fact that all others have to escape it).

      There really are some things that just happen, that are not anyone’s fault as they are explainable.

      However, in our oh so ‘developed’ culture nobody is content with that.
      Developed? Simplistic imhoo.

  • Anonymous

    Go to parts of Middleborough, reaguns, on Teeside – not many people say it, but that is the worst for such, treated as forgotten people, basic social support of all kinds.
    This fella from there did some brilliant rip-off cartoons a few years ago about there reaguns, will see if his clips are still about…

    Yes, they are still about, loads of them, BUT, BIG WARNING! terrible language, so check that you are over 18 reaguns : ),
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jtuFtUUTtEg

    Any good reaguns?

  • Anonymous

    With regards the stockbroker famous belt of Surrey, here is an explanation, and ripped this off from here – typical Surreyites, calling me outdated. well, they would say that, won’t they? : )

    Quote,
    “What kind of people live in Surrey?

    Usually when journalists refer to Surrey they sloppily use the
    outdated cliche “Surrey’s stockbroker belt” which refers back to the early part
    of the last century when affluent City professionals commuted by train from
    large mock Tudor houses in Surrey and enjoyed a privileged lifestyle – playing
    golf, (the wife played tennis) superintending the gardener and driving the
    Jaguar or Bentley to the local pub for a gin and tonic. Maybe this stereotype
    did once exist in vast numbers, but no longer, and today you are as likely to
    find a very different type of wealthy person living down a Surrey lane. There
    are pop stars ( Eric Clapton at Ewhurst, Ringo Starr at Cranleigh, Mick Hucknall
    at Walton-on-Thames, Brian May at West End) media celebrities (Michael Caine at
    Leatherhead, Judi Dench at Outwood and glamour model, Jordan, at Woldingham) and
    sport superstars ( Jimmy White in Cobham, Colin Montgomerie and Jamie Redknap in
    Oxshott, Sir Geoff Hurst in Weybridge). Lots of Chelsea Football Club players,
    including John Terry, the England football captain, have moved into the environs
    of Cobham, following the establishment of their training ground in the town.
    Surrey even has a smattering of royals – Prince Edward (the Queen’s youngest
    son) and his wife live at Bagshot Park near Woking.
    The same qualities that attract celebrities (large houses in
    private settings and excellent transport communications with London and the rest
    of the world) also attract successful business people from around the globe. The ACS International
    Schools at Cobham and Egham (with students from nearly 50 nationalities) and
    TASIS The American School in England at Thorpe act as magnets for foreigners
    needing to buy or rent near London, but wanting to live somewhere quieter and
    greener. Today there are large numbers of American, Scandinavian, German, Dutch,
    Far Eastern, Italian (particularly at Woking) and now even Russian residents in
    key areas of Surrey. As a result there can be something of a cosmopolitan
    atmosphere, and in shops in places like Cobham or Esher you are as likely to
    hear a foreign accent or a foreign language as an English voice.
    Towns near the M25, such as Guildford, Chertsey and Leatherhead,
    have grown as major business centres in their own right, and major companies
    have moved into new European headquarters in Surrey. The county has a
    surprisingly high global profile in the international computer and technology
    industries. Thus while once Surrey was a domitory county, whose residents had to
    commute to London to earn high salaries, this is no longer the case, and many
    highly-paid Surrey residents now work within the county. ”

    Link to it, which I ripped,
    http://www.surreyhouses.com/factfile/factfile.php

    Gerry Anderson stuff which I watched when I was young used to come into my mind with regards to Surrey, until I realised it was Hertfordshire he mainly filmed in, oop north a bit!

  • Michele

    The French editor is trying to claim some cred for the pics.

    What a simpleton – words to effect of ” …. the pics were taken with a long lens so we exposed how easily someone with a weapon could have done them harm ……..”

    Yes pet, some of us understand that they are at risk every single time they are out in public so …. what was your point again?

    ….. “she’s just doing what many young women do on beaches all over the world………..” Should we be amazed that such stupid pointless people have such prestigious roles and actually enrich their bosses with all this (or not be amazed after all)?

    • Ehtch

      Bluddy ‘ell Michele!!! She has a point though, anyone could have been there.

      However, since security IS always top drawer around them, this points to that this was state organised, perhaps with Kate’s blessing, so she can get her mams out on a french beach next year, south or on the Gironde peninsular near Bordeaux? Get over that hump?

      Knew she was a free sun worshipper, I could tell, can see these things, but as long as it doesn’t go further than a bikini top though, Any further and that will certainly make Queenie choke on her tea and biscuits when she sees their holiday snaps!

  • Michele

    I really don’t like Tom Jones or other tunefuls doing ‘Hallelujah’, Len owns it, who else really has the right to sing ‘Born with the gift of a golden voice’.
    I laugh every time I hear it :-)

  • Anonymous

    Ach reaguns, been tempted to post this, so why not, Ali G visits Wales, meeting his bros underground, and that,
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kOZlJiOvXsU

    CH Ali, CH, get your tongue around it mun! Sorry for spotting welsh humour, since the english ‘ave none, especiallly down in that massive, “the city shitty”, innit?

  • Anonymous

    Don’t like Tom?!? Is there something wrong with you girl? Everyone likes a bit of Tom, allsorts…

    Here he is from said show – hang on, might as well post the official vid of it what he sung then,
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3JWiPFT0v2c

    Yeh, we are all getting old, since the day we were born, and hopefully when we get to the otherside of the traintrack, we won’t be dribbling as start.

    Feel it Michele.

  • Anonymous

    Great stuff Ehtch.
    Unfortunately I have had the great misfortune to visit Middlesborough. Absolutely grim. Had some friends living there when I was living in relatively nice parts of the North East.

  • Anonymous

    Heck, might as well post Peter Sellers visiting a nudist colony, isn’t it?
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AxRJCoLkqSg

    Bonjour mademoiselle! ding-dong…

  • Anonymous

    edit – just been thinking, this might be an appropriate time to post some more Peter Sellers, but in the southern german/austrian/swiss alps, with a dog,
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SXn2QVipK2o

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=672766403 Joe Buckley

    Anyone blaming the militarisation of the police purely on Thatcher (although she made it muchworse and more of a National phenomenon) obviously wasn’t wasn’t around in the 1970’s. The SPG was formed in the 60’s and was already acting as an Anti-Union private army before the Tories got back in.

  • Anonymous

    Yep, agreed. Remember reading a script in a book of plays of the Play for Today-type broadcast from the days of “Cathy Come Home”-age in the early sixties, where an union was inflitrated by such, to destabalise.

    Maybe ‘around ’63 when the Torys knew in the ’64 general election they might struggle. These same tory types that were so conducive to Hilter in the mid-1930’s, you could say…

    But you have got to say JoeB, they did ramp it up a bit more, such actions, when the Thatch got in in ’79?

    Their traditional managers, who were tory supporters, did wind things up for the winter of discontent just before then, didn’t they? Despite plees by union leaders to their rank and file, who knew what was really going on? Beer and sandwiches meetings it is known as now. But there was something insidious about the winter of discontent, but it was the righties in this country though, unlike the propogandists try telling us even to this day.

  • Anonymous

    Something went “wurrhrhooong” there, tried to change the vid, since it was ze wrong one, ze poster put his own dog into it, editorially, as e is allowed to do, it is a free world. But the link is correct, but the clickable pic was ze one I originally posted. So here is ze clickable pic I was wanting to post, with ze original dog, in ze film, garcon,
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SXn2QVipK2o

    Am I making myself clear?!? Zimmer? Ja, a fecking zimmer I want!

    • Ehtch

      fuzzermore, Peter Sellers did a brilliant movie/film in Swansea, in the early sixties, Kingsley Amis-type, and all that, when Kingsley was still master of English literature of Swans Uni then, or something. Peter playing a librarian in the Swansea Central lending library, opposite the copshop now, looking after customers, in all ways….

      See if I can find my best clip of it, I am sure it should be still around,
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1o6nDCsiDbA

      Ah, so it is, it is on the top shelf, down the back, right down by there….

    • Ehtch

      excuse yippitydodah (me) in the comments in that vid, “OOPLA! Brautwerst, even. Excuse moi, voici moi non-allemande, et il crap krautisch.” Ja, ich bin ein welshhomme!

  • Anonymous

    OOPLA! Alastair. Noticed that was my thousand official Disqus comment. Do I get a prize? Non? cheapskate… :) but what do you expect with scottish blood, Huw…….

  • Anonymous

    bastard, it has disappeared, the Clousaur origninal,
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SXn2QVipK2o
    And what about my library sketch Alastair?
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1o6nDCsiDbA

    Le vache, comment pourriez-vous? Sie sind die scheiße auf meiner jackboot.

    : ))

  • Anonymous

    A joke for you Alastair;

    What is the secret of telling a joke timing?

    Get it, get it? ach, I tried.

  • Anonymous

    Oh lawd, I have messed up my posts, interacted, one has suddenly deleted one’s self, while another seems to have decided it has had too much abuse.