Sunday, July 29, 2012

Blair has a new master

It is official. No less a person than Mr Tony Blair the 'legacy Czar' of the 2012 Olympics insists that McDonalds and Coca Cola are perfectly healthy.  It is unlikely millionaire Blair has ever had to eat in a McDonalds, smell the kitchens or attempt to digest the food.

In the groundbreaking film 'supersize me', Morgan Spurlock monitored the effects of a McDonalds diet. These included a 13 percent increase in body mass and a cholesterol level of 230. In the American system 200 is the maximum safe level!

Clearly this is regarded as ideal for youth sports by Blair.  Ever ready to grovel to the corporations, The man who started out as Bush's poodle is now McDonald's new chicken McNugget.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Gove behaves like a pickpocket using the distraction of the Olympic Games

The government has sneaked in a proposal to allow academies to use unqualified staff to teach children. This is overwhelmingly opposed by parents and teachers but people had their eyes on the Olympic Opening Ceremony while this measure was introduced without discussion or negotiation.

Commenting on the Department for Education’s decision to remove the requirement for academies to employ qualified teachers, Christine Blower, General Secretary of the National Union of Teachers, said:

“This is a perverse decision by the DfE and a clear dereliction of duty.

“The NUT believes all children deserve to be taught by qualified teachers, and it's not just the profession that thinks so. Our 2011 ComRes poll showed that 89% of parents want a qualified teacher to teach their child, with just 1% comfortable about those without Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) taking charge of a class.

“By his own admission, Michael Gove is relaxed about profit-making from schools. He takes his inspiration from Sweden where profits are being made by reducing the number of qualified teachers, and where educational standards have fallen. By contrast, the reason Finland scores so highly in international tables is because they value teachers, trust teachers and pay teachers well.

“Parents and teachers will see this as a cost-cutting measure that will cause irreparable damage to children’s education. Schools need a properly resourced team of qualified teachers and support staff, not lower investment dressed up as ‘freedoms’.

“The Government has no credible argument for removing the requirement for academies to employ qualified teachers, so chooses instead to bury this decision in the hours leading up to the Olympics opening ceremony.”

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Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Short story on

Do you feel entirely safe when walking through the crowded streets of the old city in Tunis? Well if you had Omar with you nothing could possibly go wrong!

Saturday, July 14, 2012

John Terry BNP poster boy

The judgement that John Terry was using racial abuse "ironically" will
give a green light to every racist thug to claim "ooh it was all
irony. I was just quoting what this ******* **** said to me". The fact
that the language used on the pitch is traditionally disgusting is not
much of an excuse. If nobody ever has to face the consequences it will
go on being disgusting.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Pity the poor tax-dodger

Anyone who thinks the Conservatives lack compassion has only to look
at Philip Circus's column in the County Times "Cutting Tax is the best
way to reduce avoidance." Tories may have to take hard decisions to
cut money going to the old, the sick and the disabled but they are
genuinely fond of the tax dodger. And obviously the way to stop the
poor things dodging tax is to cut the tax. Thus a government hell-bent
on "deficit reduction" still spares a thought for the rich and
generously gives them tax cuts.

But does Circus's idea go far enough? Surely by his logic we should
leave our homes unlocked so there is less housebreaking, perhaps give
goods away from shops to discourage shoplifters, and abolish speed
limits so there is no more speeding.

Mr Circus is a bit of an anarchist on the quiet isn't he.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Euthanasia - don't let them put a red peg on you!

The House of Lords are debating "assisted suicide" soon.

Consequently the issue of assisted suicide (which might otherwise be
called murder
or manslaughter) is prominent in the media. What sticks in my mind is
listening to a young man in a wheelchair at a disabled teachers'
conference. What he said was "Whenever you see stories in the papers
on the lines of 'will I go to prison for helping my husband to die.'
you should ask why the newspapers are never interested in disabled
people who want to live but only in the people who want to kill us?"

Making euthanasia legal would make old and disabled people not fully
human and therefore not entitled to human rights. I understand the
courts may treat each case on its merits and temper justice with mercy
but we cannot write into law an absolute right to dispose of old and
disabled people.

And as they said in "Torchwood" if they put a red peg on you it means
the incinerator for you!

...says an old and disabled person!

Monday, July 02, 2012

Uppity Downs

At the National Disabled Teachers' Conference, Richard Rieser gave a
presentation on the views about disabled people typified by the
eugenicist movement supported by Darwin, Galton, Churchill and of
course ultimately by Hitler and the Third Reich.

He ended with a poem by Micheline Mason called Uppity Downs which puts
an alternative view.

I am glad to be able to report
To Messrs Darwin, Galton, Churchhill and Down
Hitler and the Third Reich
That your mission was a failure

Though you tried so hard to persuade us
With your learned accomplices
To believe in you nightmare
Requiring the extermination of the flawed,
The flawed have nonetheless flowered

Protected from your twisted plan
By unstoppable love,
Now released from the ghettos
People with Down Syndrome
And other endangered treasures
Are rising up all over the world
Getting uppity and visible

Artists and poets,
Actors and dancers
Some quiet and thoughtful,
Some noisy and fun,
A teacher, every one

You could say in fact
That your horrible experiment
Has not simply failed
But gloriously backfired!

Parents all fired up
With fierce and defensive love
For their targeted children
Have joined arms with the Flawed
And other progressive forces
To insist on inclusion for all
Replacing your elitist ideals
Of empire and Might –

Britain forever Ruling the Waves-
With a different dream
Taking hold in many places
Of a slower, more gentle world
In which being born human is enough
To evoke awe, wonder and respect
From each to all

The end of competition
The start of collaboration
A bottom-up revolution
Heralding a new world
In which it is safe for all of us
To be our selves


Sunday, July 01, 2012

Trade Unionists resist attack on disabled "scroungers"

There is - quite rightly - outrage when BNP and other far-right thugs
attack disabled people. Cameron and the media are doing just the same
thing, using their wealth and power rather than their fists.

Disabled people are among the hardest hit in the cuts and the
ideological assault echoes the eugenicist argument that disabled
people are "useless mouths." Cameron really ought to be careful
talking in these terms. For the general public there seem to be plenty
of "useless mouths" around the cabinet table, in the banks and in the

The Disabled Teachers' Conference took place on the weekend of 30th
June to 1st July. Significantly the conference involved speakers from
UCU and PCS who are also involved in opposing the attack on disabled
people which is taking place. And the attack is ferocious.

Sasha Callaghan of UCU described a "reign of terror" by the
undeserving rich against the poor. "The government's attitude to the
poor harks back to the Poor Law of the 19th Century. Our past is in
front of us." The language used about disabled people; "scroungers,"
"shiftless" and "undeserving" echoes fascist rhetoric.

The NUT's Allan Grey added that in the light of Cameron's vicious
attacks on disabled people "it would believe the Labour Party would
represent us but I hardly need to say we can't."

The PCS representative, Austin Harney, revealed that PCS has balloted
on its political fund with the consequence that they will be able to
stand trade union candidates against pro-cuts candidates from any of
the political parties.

PCS members are being disciplined for merely telling claimants that
they have a right to "access to work" support. They have to accede to
requests but they can be in trouble for telling claimants their

The government attacks disabled people because they think they are
weak and have no allies. Certainly many of the charities on which
disabled people depend have folded in the face of the government
onslaught. Downing Street should be in the middle of a perfect storm
of recrimination from the charities but they are not. The butcher has
his big knife, but the lamb to be slaughtered has an open mind!

Only the trade union movement can provide the strong allies that
disabled people need. There was overwhelming enthusiasm for the TUC
anti-cuts demonstration in October but nobody wants to wait until
October before taking action against the government's disgraceful
attack on disabled people.