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Everything posted by DamnSaxon

  1. Further proof (as if we needed any) that the lunatics have taken over the asylum.
  2. ^^^ Not getting at anyone or casting any nasturtiums, trout, I was just wondering whether it is (or could be) set from a list of timezones like they use in Windows, where you can set, say, "GMT London, Dublin, etc" which adds summer time, or "GMT Casablanca, Monrovia" which doesn't. The Windows list seems to cover everything, but even then you can add zones to the list with "tzedit" if you want - I've added "GMT, Original and Best, Accept No Substitute" for my own use - same setup as Casablanca, of course, but looks cool onscreen (like Bogart & Bergman ).
  3. On a more modest scale, perhaps ... "Moderator" or even ... "Admin" Both totally and not at all an attempt to curry favour
  4. Not sure about the Robyn Hoode Pubbe, Atomic, though it might be the "Olde Trip to Jerusalem" you remember. It certainly has a claim to the oldest pub title, and it's in the Castle Rock - there used to be a sign up in there warning patrons they might get small bits of rock falling into their beer, tho' I never knew anyone it happened to. You really should call in for a drink there if you're visiting Nottingham. There's also the "Royal Children", just up Maid Marian Way from the Trip, another fine old pub, with a whalebone hanging over one door (reason for this on the adjacent sign - come and patronise our old pubs if you want to know!). Many people also visit the "Vertical Drinking" establishments in the city centre, but that's a bit hardcore for me. Khit, if you'll be at the Uni, there's a Buttery Bar, and a refectory for less alcoholic intake, in Portland Building (or used to be). Check nottingham.ac.uk for full details. If it's Trent, you're in the city centre anyway. Hope you have a good & productive trip.
  5. I thought mine was already set to GMT (as I run on GMT all year round anyway) but a few weeks ago noticed that my Shetlink time had changed to GMT+1 at some point. Is there no option somewhere in the programming to do all that stuff automatically? (Unless turned off by the likes of me, of course.) Seems odd if not, as the Summer Time Delusion is so widespread.
  6. It does seem easy for slagging matches to develop. Maybe some hair-trigger topics should branch off into a group (there haven't been any when I've checked) where interested parties could slog it out in a suitably flameproof environment without frightening the horses. Topics like the BNP, or Israel, in particular, practically invoke Godwin's Law ("As a (Usenet) discussion grows longer, the probability of a comparison involving Nazis or Hitler approaches 1") just by existing. The Law seems just as valid for forums other than Usenet. Back on topic, what a waste of time - another slagging match (yawn). Better (as Dray said in that Grauniad link) to let him talk about as much as possible and, as we used to say, damn himself out of his own mouth - or not, as the case may be. I'm no BNP supporter, but I know one or two people who are considering them quite seriously because, like it or not, they have picked up on the fact that an awful lot of people in the UK are not at all happy with the way things are going. Quite a bit of their support is probably due to the "Plague on All Their Houses" vote, and I wonder whether it's not that aspect which frightens mainstream politicians off proper discussion with them. Like us forum posters, let them all be free to talk about everything. If that talk reveals stuff our complacent and controlling leaders don't like, good, maybe they could try representing us for a change.
  7. Another possibility would be if you can find a connecting flight to East Midlands Airport. There's a "Skylink" bus service from there to Nottingham city centre and railway station, then the usual range of buses and taxis to get you the last few miles. As I'm in Nottingham, PM me if there's any other help I can give you (decent shops, areas best avoided at night, etc).
  8. "Eternal Youth" might be a better option. You could end up as a sort of million year old sultana otherwise. Omniscience, of course. As an Englishman, I naturally assume this anyhow. (blushes modestly) Omnipotence. The omniscience tells me what is right; the omnipotence helps to "make it so".
  9. Mogling's right, unfortunately (first post above). As an identifiably British, national treasure, the Royal Mail must be cleared out of the way of the EU/NWO totalitarian steamroller. It's been in the pipeline for years, since the greedy parasites of the private sector were allowed to filch all the profitable business from RM, with no requirement on them to provide a proper, universal service (as any Shetlander will appreciate). Can't impose that on the sainted private sector, of course, it might impair their profit margin when they have to "prove" that they're more "efficient" than the nasty, smelly old public sector. I wish I thought there was a solution to this ... well, a solution not involving civil war, anyhow. I'm getting too old for that sort of malarkey.
  10. A mirror does not reverse left and right any more than it reverses up and down. It reverses front and back.
  11. ^^ Re coal fired stations and the efficiency of their operation. I've been round Ratcliffe-on-Soar power station (the one that's been attracting climate campaigners recently) several times, as a "responsible adult" (hah!) accompanying school parties. It's a nice school trip - the class usually really enjoy actually walking around inside one of the multi-megawatt generators. Back in the days of the C.E.G.B., our trips were guided around the site by an old fellow in a flat cap and brown shopcoat, he even had a few tools visible in his top pocket. You could tell from the way he talked about what we were seeing that he'd been doing this all his life and knew the place backwards. He also told us that the whole station had been designed as a "spine" station, intended to run at steady high power constantly, and that it took several days to get any part of it up to full efficiency. In the brave new world of free markets, we were shown round by a personable young woman in Company uniform, with a clipboard. By checking the clipboard, she showed us round most of it okay, but couldn't really answer technical questions - these trips were as a part of the science lessons, after all, that was why we were there. She proudly told us that, as the wholesale price of electricity fluctuated during the day, the power output of the whole station was wound up and down to maximise the profit. I'll mention also that the Health and Safety police had decreed that we were no longer to be allowed to go into the bottom of the cooling towers, either, for fear of unspeakable humidity-borne diseases (shudder). That used to be a weird and memorable part of the trip, too. Half the problem we have with energy supply (of all sorts) in the UK must be down to this crazy practice of trying to pretend that the electricity/ gas/ water/ whatever systems in this country are anything other than a single system. I hate to think what all that winding up and down of equipment designed for steady use is doing to either its efficiency or the wear and tear on it, but it seems to typify what's happened to this country. We used to have a national energy policy, but what we now have is a fragmented collection of parts of the system, all jostling for maximum profit and with the "big picture" completely forgotten in the rush. Oh, and showers of politicians who've forgotten that the reason we actually vote them in is to regulate stuff for us, and prefer to "leave it to the market". Of course most of AT's points about our wasteful consumption are valid. We in the West have been shockingly profligate consumers of everything in sight, especially oil, for far too long, and it's not brought us any closer at all to an earthly paradise - if anything, rather the opposite. A pretty good start would be to use the stuff we have as efficiently as we can, rather than playing stupid financial games with thousands of tons of precision machinery and wearing it out needlessly. I feel much the same about all "throwaway" products, engineered to last 1.0 days longer than the guarantee, and about things like "recycling" bottles by smashing them to bits, re-melting with a lot of energy and making new ones - where we used to take them back to the shop and get 3d for the (about to be recycled) bottle. Waste, waste, waste. Still don't think any of it would have any noticeable effect on the climate, though. I've heard (in conversation with a friend, sorry, no reference) that if we doubled the CO2 in the atmosphere the entire greenhouse effect caused would be cancelled out by a 1% increase in cloud cover, which you'd probably get just from the added evaporation. Shall check that one out. We should certainly clean up our act, though, if only because we have to live in the place afterwards. As a wiser than average gorilla said a long time ago, "Don't sh*t in your own cage". Still no sunspots, either. We're all doomed. Be nice to know whether we'll fry or freeze, though.
  12. There's another bit of probably relevant information which might yet jump out to complicate all our arguments about climate change. As a radio enthusiast, I like to keep an eye on the state of the ionosphere, as it affects radio signals, and one of the strongest influences on that is sunspots. At the moment. we're experiencing a very long period of very low sunspot activity. Most of us thought at the beginning of the year that, after spending most of 2008 in a quiet state, we should see an upturn in activity sometime this year - the next maximum is supposed to be along in about 2011, maybe into 2012. We're still waiting. A few fizzles here and there, but no upturn. Maybe the count's going to go up like a rocket in six months or so, but definitely no sign of much happening yet. The last time the sunspots went away for more than a year or so was 300 or so years ago, when they disappeared for several decades. It was called the 'Maunder Minimum', and it coincided with the 'little ice age' from which we have been warming slowly back up ever since. It may, or may not, have caused the ice age, but the correlation is there to see. It suggests at least that both might have been results of something else. There are also recent suggestions by Nasa on their website that sunspots may actually be dying out at the moment, which is what makes me wonder about Maunder. It takes a certain amount of solar magnetism for them to form, and records of the Sun's magnetic field over the last 20 years or so show that the field is dropping rapidly, and getting distinctly close to that minimum sunspot-forming value. Whether we're in for another Maunder-type minimum, who knows? But if so, and if another little ice age does accompany it, there should at least be plenty of hot air available from us radio enthusiasts bitching about terrible reception conditions to keep everybody warm. Definitely worth keeping an eye on the sunspot count, though.
  13. I've been reading round the subject of climate for about a year now, since a friend put £100 on the table and said that anyone who could show him the "smoking gun" which proves anthropogenic global warming was welcome to it. Being a scientific sort anyway (and with a philosophy degree which doesn't half help in identifying BS) I quite enjoy challenges like that. I was quite surprised by what I found. No, make that "astonished". At the outset, I thought it all seemed reasonable enough, as it is usually presented. Now, it seems pretty clear to me that "AGW" is in exactly the same category as The Emperor's New Clothes. Here's a few of the places I've been. Some do refer to various published papers, but mostly I've tried to keep to the sort of thing which doesn't need a higher degree in hard sums to understand. See what you think. A very recent item on the BBC site agin their recent stance The Monckton report with some "inconvenient truths" A Middlebury Community Network editorial The Petition Signed by 31,478 Scientists this summer Andrew Gavin Marshall writing on Global Research A more politically oriented article from the same place Some more interesting reading on various claims And The Register recently pointed out some quite disgraceful data fiddling by AGWers The more I read, the more convinced I am that the whole business is invention - and perhaps "business" is the most appropriate word here. Pro-AGW articles are noticeably thin on references to peer-reviewed articles, anti-AGW ones overflow with them. I have completely changed my mind on this now I've actually investigated it myself. Sadly, this means no £100 for me, unless I can persuade my pal that what he really wanted was a scientifically harder conclusion one way or t'other. Oh, well.
  14. Owww, my brain hurts. I've just been looking through this optical illusion site. Not just the little puzzle pictures you've probably seen in books, but also some of the most amazing 3D art I've seen.
  15. ^^^ Beautiful! There should be a sort of social Darwin award for people like him.
  16. Phil Glass's Uakti. (aguas da amazonia) Uakti are Brazilian musicians who play a remarkable array of (mostly) percussion instruments with strange and intriguing names like the ... marimba d'angelim glass marimba grand pan (and inclined pan!) pakawaj caxixis big pipe (?) trilobyte (??) ... you see what I mean. The music is wonderful, energetic, enlivening stuff, and even if you don't get on with Phil Glass normally this album is well worth a listen (think how Hot Rats was the Zappa album for people who hated Zappa). Total acoustic gorgeousness.
  17. There seems to be quite a lot of odd religious stories about at the mo. Apart from the two I recently posted above, I now read in the Telegraph that although God may exist, he's not the (a?) Creator. Sounds like the Raelians had it right all along ...
  18. Before he died, Ned Sherrin really got on my wick, to the extent that I turned off whenever he came on. He always sounded so full of himself - would preface some completely obscure fact with "Of course", as though to suggest that anyone who didn't share his own expansive knowledge was a lesser being. The other side of that coin is Robert Robinson, though I know he gets on some people's nerves too. But I like the way he will often disparage himself with a comment like, "Ah, but I've got the answer written down in front of me" - while still sounding as though he did, in fact, know it. My current irritation (sorry, MJ!) is that Jamaican announcer on Radio 4. Sure, he has a "fine, resonant voice", but for my aging ears he's about 3 octaves too low to be intelligible. He reminds me every time of something from a "comms" lesson one of my employers taught us years ago - to improve communication, pitch your voice up. And that's apart from crass, overpaid idiots "joking" about "scr*wing your granddaughter", a case which ought to convince anyone that the Beeb, if ever it was "Auntie", sure ain't now. Thank God for Radio 3, still a quiet, cultured little enclave (even if few of us listen to it). And of course, as a Radio 4 listener, I love Charlotte Green, even if it does sound a bit like she's eating the microphone.
  19. Interesting thing in the Indy today. Seems a bit rich to blame Exmoor when you look at what they say about the attitude of "the metropolitan Daily Mail columnist and former Marie Claire editor" they mention, IMHO. You can quite understand their councillor's success!
  20. Interesting to note in the Telegraph that Egypt is discouraging the niqab. Burka next?
  21. A serious contender for the title of Worst Bit Of Photoshopping Ever: http://www.boingboing.net/2009/09/29/lauren.jpg "And they wonder why young girls end up with eating disorders"
  22. ^^^ Agree. It's bl***y disgraceful. And I'm sure you've heard the recent news that, by 2015 or so, we can expect "rolling brownouts" (in the 70s we called them "power cuts") because our "efficient" private energy firms are too busy channeling money out of the UK populace into their (mainly foreign) shareholders' pockets to spend any of it on replacing our decaying power stations and infrastructure. So you'll be paying 60% extra for less actual energy. In fact, you're right. Revolution now!
  23. Once upon a time I used mostly to vote Labour, back when they at least seemed to stand up for the ordinary person. After Blair, they stand no chance. The Tories were always the party of the "rich and want to keep it that way" fraternity. After Thatcher, they, too, stand no chance. I'll never forgive them for trashing our country's infrastructure the way they did. I have voted Liberal (with or without the SD element). Lately, though, they too have started spouting the "free market" nonsense which has wrecked the country, so ... you guessed it. If they'd kept the excellent Ming Campbell I might feel differently. I might vote SNP if I had the good fortune to live in Scotland, but I'd need to know a lot more about their policies than we see down here. UKIP and BNP? Well, while it's true that I am at least as disaffected as most of their members (know one or two, and they're not all raving fascists as often painted), I think there's too much in both of them which goes too far beyond "getting our country back in working order", so ... no. Other? I have voted Green once or twice, but in a non-representative system you just know your Green vote isn't going to count for much. I could conceivably vote Respect, or Loony, just as easily and count for just as little. So I might end up going with Crofter's comment and spoiling my paper. Believe me, by the time I've spoiled it they will have no way of counting it as a vote for any of their candidates. In fact, it's become like everything else. Loads of "choice", but no real difference between the choices and never the choice you want. Voted "Other" in the poll in the hope that it covers us "spoilers".
  24. Ah, but (little hairs on back of neck stand up) what has the cat sensed that you can't see? My pet "cat irritation" came courtesy of a kitten we had years ago. She'd leap up behind you as you walked by and sink all claws into your back - EXACTLY hitting the bit which you can't reach yourself. Aaargh!
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