Posts Tagged ‘Media’


October 1, 2014



November 19, 2013

Untitled 4m

Wide Screen World

November 16, 2013


Benefit of Law

September 19, 2012

Roper: So now you’d give the Devil benefit of law?

More: Yes. What would you do? Cut a great road through the law to get after the Devil?

Roper: I’d cut down every law in England to do that.

More: Oh? And when the last law was down—and the Devil turned round on you—where would you hide? Yes, I’d give the Devil benefit of law, for my own safety’s sake.

A Man for All Seasons (1960)

Now This Really is Priceless

April 19, 2012

‘But roughly from the end of the Victorian age until the Second World War, we based our policing and justice and prisons on the belief that people should be and were free in almost all aspects of life, but if they broke known laws they would be treated with some harshness, and deliberately punished, through loss of liberty and honour, compulsory hard work, separation from the world outside, deprivation of pleasures, austere living conditions etc.’

Now, don’t laugh, this could be true.  On whichever planet Mr. Hitchens (Future PM and Leader of the Free World) happens to be posting from.

The death rattle of a thoroughly discredited generation.

A Study in Succinctness

March 17, 2012

On Planet False Dichotomy there is no such thing as the golden mean.

And the newspaper columnist is king.

Hyperbolic contrasts:

What Are We Supposed to Make of This:

May 8, 2011

An extract from the recently published memoirs of Dr. Anthony Daniels who was, for a couple of decades, a consultant psychiatrist at a large Birmingham hospital, which he claims was located in the midst of a ‘slum’ and catered solely for ‘slum dwellers’. I wonder how many of his colleagues suspected that he was simultaneously waging a long and bloody secret war against his ‘underclass’ patients in a charming little right-of-centre publication called The Spectator under the nom de guerre Theodore Dalrymple (taken from a PG Wodehouse short story). The book is entitled ‘Fool or Physician: the Memoirs of a Skeptical Doctor’. I’ll leave you to make up your own mind about that one.

‘I began to wonder, as I saw a crop of self poisoners every day, whether a hefty fine would not be more appropriate than empathy and false promises of help to come. This was certainly the view of the casualty department staff, who washed out the stomachs of the overdosers not so much for medical reasons, but in the vindictive hope that so unpleasant a procedure would discourage them from repeating their action (it was a vain hope). Once a young girl, well-known to the hospital for her repeated overdoses, swallowed the contents of a bottle of mild analgesic, which she assumed was harmless because it was so widely available without prescription. But she had miscalculated, blood tests showed that she had irreparably damaged her liver. It was not without a certain exultation that she was informed of her unavoidable and imminent death (she was still conscious).’


‘What sweet revenge it was on all the patients who had tormented staff by taking overdoses.’

And then:

‘Patients often held the threat of suicide over us like the sword of Damocles. I was once called to see a girl of twenty who was in psychotherapy with a social worker. The latter was at the end of her tether because the patient, who slashed her wrists regularly, was at the window threatening to jump out unless the social worker devoted even more time to her. I pointed out to the patient that as the window was not very high up she might only break her ankle. (…..). Why not go to a window a couple of storeys higher up? Or better still, find another building to jump off, a small favour to ask.’

Interesting technique. I wonder if he used it on any of his other parasuicidal patients and whether it ever actually worked.

Make of it what you will.

– Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Next Stop Ducking Stool

August 18, 2010

I must confess I am afraid. I went with my neighbour Nobby for our usual trip to Costa Coffee Shop. I ordered my usual mocha freshcato (primo), a drink that I am convinced contains about two hundred million calories. The only newspapers in the rack were The Daily Mail and The Express. Both had scream-out-loud headlines about benefit scroungers.  Lately, the right wing press have been getting their jollies by excoriating benefit claimants and it feels like a witch hunt.  Their efforts to whip up the masses into a frenzy of hatred against benefit claimants appear to be working if the comments section of The Daily Mail online is to be believed.  Everyone hates The Daily Express so only a couple of people have bothered commenting there.

Today, both The Mail and The Express are aiming their vitriol at those who claim incapacity benefit.  It is alleged that approximately 900,000 people have been wrongly awarded this benefit.  Note that they do not use the word ‘fraud’ but it is not so subtly implied.

Now, as I understand it, in the past few years new and stricter rules have been introduced in order to make it more difficult, and in some cases, impossible to claim incapacity benefit.  Those who claimed before this point, under the old rules, acted in good faith and cannot be said to be defrauding the system.  It would be illogical, not to mention hideously unfair, to accuse them of this.

Here’s a useful analogy: take a sports game of two halves.  If the players adhered to rules enforced in the first half which were then changed in the second half, it would be unfair to retrospectively penalise these players for failing to follow the newly introduced rules in the first half.  This is, in effect, what these two tabloid ‘newspapers’ are doing to benefit claimants.

I am becoming afraid of my own species, paralysed  by terror.

Because this feels personal.

One in Four

February 12, 2010

A new magazine for the mentally ill or should that be ‘service user’? It’s bright, it’s vibrant, it’s ‘upbeat’; but I can’t see what they bring to the party. I see nothing in there that I haven’t seen before. They still focus on the elite. Almost all of my mentally ill friends are ‘burnt out’.* I watch them deteriorate more and more each year. I do not see their experiences reflected in the pages of ‘One in Four’.  I do not see myself reflected in there either.  I wish I did.

*Many mentally ill people – acquaintances and friends – don’t even have access to a computer.  I guess I know a different class of mentally ill people


July 30, 2009

Jeremy Kyle is guilty of attempted murder.  Well I’m not surprised.  I never did think much of that bloke. His victim was this exquisitely made up girl whose story is covered in The Daily Mail (or insert epithet of your choice):

Picture 1

Then I read the article a little more closely.  The young woman is holding Jeremy Kyle responsible for the injuries that she sustained at the hands of her charming coke head boy friend, even though he had been beating her regularly for a decade and she had two children with him. Attempted murder was never an issue for the prosecution in this case in spite of the Daily Mail’s fit of hyperbole.  He was found guilty of Grievous Bodily Harm and received a two year custodial sentence.

The journalist continually emphasises the fact that Rebecca Langley hails from a middle class backgound.  Is this a ploy to attract the sympathy of the Daily Mail readership?  She is still ‘middle class’, according to the introduction.  Didn’t she relinquish that status when she got herself pregnant at sixteen?  I’d always thought that when it came to social mobility that one’s status, as is the case in buying shares, can go down as well as up.  Guess I was wrong.  Not to The Daily Mail.  Once a middle class lass, always a middle class lass. That is her birthright and no amount of recklessness or fecklessness can change that.  Apparently.

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