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Questions Of The Day (Politics)
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Mick Harper
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Anderson Cooper: "I don't take responsibility at all," he said. The President of the United States, "I don't take responsibility at all." It is a far cry from Harry Truman's "The buck stops here".

Strictly speaking, Anderson, he wasn't taking responsibility for the outbreak of the coronavirus and (more doubtfully) for the provision of testing equipment and so forth. He was definitely not refusing to take responsibility for the national American response to the outbreak. For better or worse. But, hey, it's Donald Trump and he'll soon be in fourteen day lockdown after having his photo taken next to a Brazilian press attaché so won't be able to answer back.
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Mick Harper
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Relax. The Guardian's given over the front page of its op-ed section to Gordon Brown. "In this crisis our leaders must work together," he tells us. Bit of an expert on that subject, our Gordon.
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Mick Harper
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This black woman police superintendent who was sent a kiddie porn video by her sister as an illustration of how awful kiddie porn is and was then prosecuted for possessing a kiddie porn video has lost her last appeal and is being booted out. I didn't think my jaw could drop any further but now it has. She has been placed on the Child Protection Register.
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Mick Harper
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What I want to know is why the judge hasn't been put on it as well. He had it in his 'bundle of evidence' for months. Fact.
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Mick Harper
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Avoid pubs, clubs and theatres

What is the social class of the person who came up with this phrase? Someone who lives in a world where cinema attendance does not outnumber theatre attendance by a thousand to one. That is not entirely irrelevant.
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Mick Harper
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Concern about parliament not scrutinising this and oversight not being applied to that and there has to be a sunset clause for something else is entirely misplaced. We always have emergency legislation rushed through on the nod and it lasts as long as we want it to last. The Defence of the Realm Acts (the name varies) tear up every safeguard we've accumulated since Magna Carta and last for as long as the war (or the plague or the natural disaster or the strike) lasts.

And that's the point. Everyone thinks these things require constant vigilance, and maybe they do in countries that are new to it all, but we've been doing it for so many yonks nobody knows how to do anything else. Maybe occasionally more's the pity but anyway it's one thing we don't have to worry about. Nod it through, chaps and chapettes. It may be crap but you won't be able to come up with anything better in the time available.
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Mick Harper
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Boris Johnson is having a very good war. You will recall that the previous incumbent botched her Big Opportunity by behaving entirely rationally over the Grenfell fire but being slaughtered because she forgot the First Rule of Political Fight Club: being seen to be Prime Ministerial. In this case acting as Chief Nanny to the Nation. Boris is doing very well as Chief Epidemiologist to the Nation.

Of course May ultimately fell for longer terms reasons, i.e. not delivering Brexit, but for Boris the equation is brutally simple: if we get out of this with a death toll near the European average, he will be hailed as Our Wise Saviour; if we're near the top end he will be the man who fiddled while Britain died. Even after history delivers its verdict we will still not know whether a) he made the slightest difference and b) if he did, whether it increased or decreased how many Britons died.
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Mick Harper
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So Scotland's cheekie chappie is cleared of twelve charges made by nine women. This hardly seems possible. We await the true denouement.
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Boreades


In: finity and beyond
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M'Lady Boreades is getting seriously annoyed at the latest news.

Strict new curbs on life in the UK to tackle the spread of coronavirus have been announced by the prime minister. From this evening people must stay at home except for shopping for basic necessities, daily exercise, any medical need and travelling to and from essential work. Shops selling non-essential goods are being told to shut and gatherings in public of more than two people who do not live together are to be prohibited.


https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-52012432

There was I on standby to fly a mercy mission at sparrows to the nearest timber merchant to get a new gatepost (7'x7"x7") for Château Boreades' front drive. It looks like I'm grounded.

But we're not sure how these "strict new curbs" are going to be enforced. Here in Deepest East Wiltshire, there are hardly any police to go round. Certainly not enough to police the road blocks and demand "Papers please". Fortunately the one thing we have plenty of in Wiltshire is the Army. So it looks like, if there are any road blocks, they will be Military Roadblocks. M'Lady Boreades approves; she still gets a thrill out of seeing any young soldier in uniform with a loaded and cocked weapon.

I cannot confirm or deny:
(a) that the SAS trains around here occasionally, flying in Hercules at very low level and rattling the roof tops
(b) I'm now too old to be recalled to the SBS
(c) M'Lady is still on the active duty roster for the SCS
(Special Catering Service)
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Boreades


In: finity and beyond
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Mick Harper wrote:
Avoid pubs, clubs and theatres

What is the social class of the person who came up with this phrase? Someone who lives in a world where cinema attendance does not outnumber theatre attendance by a thousand to one. That is not entirely irrelevant.


Perhaps it was the same judge who had the bundle of evidence that shouldn't be viewed.

Note to AEL archivist: Keep a tab on that evidence bundle. It might be valuable later.

A copy of Lady Chatterley’s Lover used by the judge who presided over one of the most well-known obscenity trials in British literary history has been sold for £56,250 at Sotheby’s auction house.

The 118-page book, which was initially expected to fetch between £10,000 to £15,000, was sold to an anonymous online bidder for nearly four times the pre-sale estimate on Tuesday.

The lot included a special hand-stitched damask bag created by the wife of Mr Justice Byrne, the judge in the 1960 trial, to carry the salacious novel to and from the Old Bailey. It also included notes Lady Byrne had compiled on Central Criminal Court notepaper.


https://www.legalcheek.com/2018/11/judges-copy-of-lady-chatterleys-lover-fetches-56000-at-auction/

Aside note: It's a curiosity that the chief prosecutor, Mervyn Griffith-Jones, asked if it were the kind of book "you would wish your wife or servants to read". Clearly Lady Byrne had already told Mr Justice Byrne the answer to that question.

Lady Chatterley's Lover: Export ban placed on judge's copy
https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-48255381
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Mick Harper
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And yet it is patchy vide your comments about walkers on the Derbyshire Dales being subject to the full rigour of the law. Our true masters, the SPADS, come from a very tight social banding (see Rebecca Long-Bailey's bio) but so too do the medical establishment (sideways and up a bit) and it is pretty obvious who is in charge at the moment. Not better or worse necessarily, just messier. On Friday, the Chief SPAD was filmed running away from Number Ten. Either the hounds of hell were after him or he was going off to get them.
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Wile E. Coyote


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It's looking like being a bad pandemic for Rough Sleepers and Beggars.

Rough Sleepers are one of the best groups at practising social distancing, they have their space and don't venture onto another pitch. Members of the public either avoid or, if compassionate, rarely approach too closely.

The chance of these folk catching something open air is unlikely.

What does the government do? It locks-down the public, leaving folks no income from begging, so there is no way of getting drink or drugs, and then, out of kindness, rounds up your folks into overcrowded hostels, bed and breakfasts, and hotels.

Unintended Consequences.....
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Boreades


In: finity and beyond
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Most bed and breakfasts, and hotels, have been ordered to close. I suppose that concentrates the Homeless even more into Hostels?

It might seem insensitive to call them Concentration Camps. ... ?
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Boreades


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Mick Harper wrote:
Our true masters, the SPADS, come from a very tight social banding (see Rebecca Long-Bailey's bio) but so too do the medical establishment (sideways and up a bit) and it is pretty obvious who is in charge at the moment. .


It might be pretty obvious who is in charge at the moment - in England - but in Scotland, we're not so sure. Ma wee cousin Borry MacBoreades (of Glenborrydale) sends me news. This viral storm in a petri dish is interfering with the free flow of Scottish elite friends and family. And sometimes the wrong kinds of media publicity.

(1) Dr Calderwood, I presume?

It's very stressful being the Chief Medical Officer of Scotland. So stressful she needed a rest away from the media spotlight, and having to continually tell the Scottish hoi polloi how to behave. She must have forgotten to berate the annoying plod : Don't you know who I am?

Scottish police visited Dr Calderwood today and issued her with a warning after she was caught flouting the lockdown rules. Scotland's Chief Constable Iain Livingstone said in a statement: "Earlier today, local officers visited Dr Catherine Calderwood and spoke to her about her actions, reiterated crucial advice and issued a warning about her future conduct, all of which she accepted.


Honestly, what's the world coming to when a top-top elite medical person can't nip off to their weekend home (for medical reasons) without being expected to behave in a way that matches their official announcements?

(2) Nanny McPhee (para-medic extraordinaire)

Has been spotted shopping for key worker supplies in Argyll, Scotland. Better known to some as Emma Thompson. She got some publicity in February for saying she wanted nothing to do with England (post-Brexit) and moved to Venice with hubby.

The couple are said to already own a house in Venice and both have had intensive Italian lessons. By registering as residents in the city they have also become official residents of Italy.

It's entirely plausible that she only fled to their cottage in Argyll so that she wouldn't be a burden on the Italian medical services. Fortunately, she doesn't qualify for the petty jealousy about "Second Homes", because she is way beyond that. This is her fourth home. West Hampstead, LA, Venice, Argyll...

Ma wee cousin Borry MacBoreades says not to worry, Glenborrydale is still safe and secure as the Clan Boreades ancestral stronghold, with its own helipad and a local airport that's very little used. So we don't need to trouble local road-blocks with any extra activity, and the ultra-elite SCS training continues.
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Mick Harper
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Trump made the sound point that it would be absurd for him to wear a mask when he was out and about since he has a much more important role to play than personally stopping the spread of the virus. This is why the Leith police dismissing Dr Calderwood is so absurd

Her being out and about = nil effect
Her being out and about and being found out= massive effect

and it is only the police responsible for that. Whose side are the police on? Their own of course, as usual. No wonder we call him Plod. Not me personally, GCHQ, just generally.
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