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 The Daily Rant

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Temperance
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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Sat 31 Dec 2016, 11:26

Thank you ferval: you do point me - us - in some good directions.

I do hope Priscilla comes back. She is our patron saint now, and I have suggested she chooses a Feast Day - perhaps 1st January (or has that date been bagged already?)? We could then have an Eve of Saint Priscilla and have appropriate celebrations tonight. This place just isn't the same without her.

Seriously, we should all stick together you know - God (choose own word here) help us...
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nordmann
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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Sat 31 Dec 2016, 13:28

I'll refine my rant so to Lutheran Christians and their ilk. I've had a belly full of them over the last week. The straw that broke the proverbial was when an emaciated client was refused a second bowl of soup yesterday by one of these bastards who, when politely asked by me to explain how the f*ck this could be conceived of as Christian behaviour in any way, shape or form, smiled (!!!!) benignly and told me in a patronising tone that alone merited a soup ladle in the eye that "Jesus" advocated "tøff kjærlighet".

My week amongst these people has simply convinced me that if I have to be locked in a room with a dozen psychopathic junkies or a dozen Christians I now know without doubt the only sane option to choose.

For those of you interested we served 10,500 meals over seven days, delivered one baby and witnessed three people die. We were raided three times by the cops (invited in by the Christians on each occasion when some clients were suspected of having some dope on them) and on one particularly productive evening I recruited about two hundred people in one go into a Satanic cult which I suppose I now have to go and found. This earned me a reprimand from a bishop, no less, who I notice saved himself a few bob over romjul by helping himself to as much nosh as he wanted which he carted off to his "palace" in holy tupperware containers several times a day.

He also closed the station early (we should have kept going until Monday) having decided that our clients have now "eaten enough" (said with a smile and rewarded with a hearty guffaw from the assembled Christians) as he preferred to use the hall tomorrow for his annual address to the Sunday School committee. Fortunately the Red Cross have stepped in so we'll be doing mobile sandwich, soup and coffee deliveries around the town this evening instead.

Beelzebub here I come. Happy New Year to all.
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Temperance
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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Sat 31 Dec 2016, 13:52

@nordmann wrote:
Beelzebub, here I come.


Don't be so daft and melodramatic. Just keep up with the bacon butties etc. deliveries. And watch what you're doing with the soup ladle.

PS "Holy Tupperware containers" - am I allowed to laugh at that?
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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Sat 31 Dec 2016, 13:59

I had to look up "tøff kjærlighet" ... but I'm not sure Jesus - or rather his biographers - ever did advocate that. I thought love (that sort of love - love of one's fellow man) was generally supposed to be unconditional.

Meanwhile just to keep you smiling - or rather grinning through gritted teeth - I've just received a Christmas card from my high-church Anglican cousin, saying what a great Christmas he's having (I think he usually goes for the full 12 nights binge experience) on retreat at an Abbey in Wales ... apparently the food and especially their wine cellar, are all so much better than at the one where he stayed last year.

Rolling Eyes


Last edited by Meles meles on Sat 31 Dec 2016, 14:14; edited 3 times in total
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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Sat 31 Dec 2016, 14:04

Temp wrote:
Just keep up with the bacon butties etc. deliveries.

A third of our clientele will not eat those on religious grounds, even when they're starving. The Christians do not have an exclusive claim on lunacy.

Actually yoghurt drinks, milk and ice cream will probably be the predominant sustenence of necessity more than choice this evening. But at least it can be administered this time without sanctimonious claptrap involving "Jesus", "tough love" and such pearls of wisdom as delivered by one pious individual to a client who quite reasonably had asked to be spared the seemingly obligatory sarcastic patronising condemnatory hypocritical insensitive bullshit purely because he needed some extra meatballs - "it wasn't me who made the bed you're lying in" (he didn't get the meatballs either).

Daft and melodramatic? If that's all I've emerged with by way of character faults I'll notch that up as a success then.

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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Sat 31 Dec 2016, 14:28

More power to your soup ladle I say, be it for dispensing soup or bashing bishops.

If you need any help with establishing a Glasgow branch of your cult, just let me know. After Rangers 1 - Celtic 2 this morning there will be many who would choose to join anything that avoids alleged Christian affiliations. It's going to be lively Hogmanay I fear.
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Temperance
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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Sat 31 Dec 2016, 14:30

@nordmann wrote:
Daft and melodramatic? If that's all I've emerged with by way of character faults I'll notch that up as a success then.


Oh, what an idiot you are at times, nordmann - as well as being daft and melodramatic. Believe it or not, I was actually applauding what you are doing, but feared sounding patronising and getting a soup ladle smack in the eye.

People who have never lain in that bed shouldn't really help front of house. They should stick to quietly cooking the meatballs and doing the washing up behind the scenes. It's hard to know what to do and say sometimes without coming across as utterly crass. The remark was most unfortunate, to put it mildly. The talking should be done by people who really understand. Well I think so, but I'm all for generous portions of meatballs - or equivalent - and double helpings of ice cream, as required.

I hope all goes well tonight and that there are no deaths in the cold up there. Delivering a baby is impressive. I won't make the obvious pious comment: fear of your ladle again.

Kindest regards, you daft, melodramatic prat.


Last edited by Temperance on Sun 01 Jan 2017, 07:39; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : put laid instead of lain - wrong verb.)
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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Sat 31 Dec 2016, 14:46

Ferval, the highlight of the experience was the police officer who, having been called in for a third occasion by a zealous Christian who suspected one client had illicit substances on his person (his actual crime was starting a rather bawdy sing-song and I can tell you that you haven't lived until you've heard a few hundred junkies, homeless immigrants and other sundry destitutes wading into the Sex Pistols back catalogue in chorus) told the pious little cow "it's we who are supposed to be the "Jævlig Dustene" (roughly translated as the f*cking bastards) and told her that wasting police time also merited a night in the cell. Jesus would have been proud of him, I reckon. Beelzebub was definitely cheering him.

Temp, the weather has been mild, thank Beelzebub. The baby was impressive - well, not the baby but the way everyone put away the knives, soup ladles and caustic commentary for an hour or so while the deed was done. An ambulance was called but the paramedics decided it best to let nature take its course and anyway the hospital had a skeleton crew on duty. So all hands on deck it was. Besides one Christian getting all gooey eyed and blurbing about how like the Baby Jesus story it was (that went down well with the lads refused extra meatballs) it was a stunning display of proper humanitarian goodness in action.

Until we were reprimanded by the bish the next day when he came in to collect his free nosh and we had to explain we were a bit behind schedule due to unexpected babies at Christmas and things. He's a lad who doesn't "do" irony and simply told us to all to buck up, he'd be back in an hour with his tupperware.

And I'm the idiot?
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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Sat 31 Dec 2016, 17:52

@nordmann wrote:
Temp wrote:
Just keep up with the bacon butties etc. deliveries.

A third of our clientele will not eat those on religious grounds, even when they're starving. The Christians do not have an exclusive claim on lunacy.

Discriminating as to what one puts in one's mouth (whether starving or otherwise) does not necessarily denote 'lunacy'. I'm minded of an incident in the mid-1990s when a UK charity or aid consignment of provisions (including chilled meat) was sent to Bosnia or some such place. The lorry convoy was eagerly followed by a television news team. On arrival at its destination, however, the meat products were pointedly rejected by the intended recipients. A British news reporter, taken aback by such seeming ingratitude, asked if the reason was that the meat wasn't halal. "No" came the reply from a local, "that's not the reason. Many of us eat non-halal meat and some of us even eat pork. No. The reason is that we don't trust the BSE-ridden British beef industry and neither do we want ourselves or our children to be exposed to CJD." The look of embarrassment and indignation on the face of the pompous UK reporter was simply priceless.
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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Sat 31 Dec 2016, 18:04

It denotes lunacy if one lets one's own children go hungry so as not to offend one's deity. In fact "lunacy" is too tame a word for this. It led to some ugly scenes last year, I heard, where one station had a lot of pig to dish out and very little else. There is nothing so heartbreaking as seeing famished children sitting sucking on biscuits while all around them are tucking merrily into their roast pork and crackling in brown sauce.

However the issue didn't arise this year. We had a surfeit of meatballs (probably horse meat, but that's still kosher, I believe) thanks to a generous donation from a local wholesaler, the same guys who keep the IKEA canteens going. Brussels sprouts were the food most shunned (we'd tons of those as well) but as far as I know this was not down to any religious belief, just an aversion to farting in company. Even our pal the bishop wouldn't steal those from the mouths of starving children (though with enough sauce on them he probably would have).
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Temperance
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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Wed 04 Jan 2017, 11:00

@Meles meles wrote:
I had to look up "tøff kjærlighet" ... but I'm not sure Jesus - or rather his biographers - ever did advocate that. I thought love (that sort of love - love of one's fellow man) was generally supposed to be unconditional.




Perhaps only a mother can give "unconditional love". Can/should adult humans expect such love from other adult humans and, in attempting to give, or in expecting to receive it, do people unwittingly do others/themselves more harm than good? Rescuers and victims and perpetrators (sometimes called persecutors) and all that Karpman Drama Triangle stuff? People who, with the best will in the world, think they are giving out "love" - tough or otherwise - by "rescuing"  those whom they perceive as poor "victims" can sometimes be dangerous. People have to learn to love themselves, to grow up and to "parent" themselves (see below). Easier said than done, of course. Best stick to just giving out meatballs, two helpings if necessary, and if asked, try to explain that idea. But it's a tricky business and it can take years for the penny to drop. Usually it doesn't.

...Beware of good Samaritans - walk to the right
Or hide thee by the roadside out of sight
Or greet them with the smile that villains wear...

R. C. Dunning (who?).







Believe it or not, I have thought about little else since these exchanges last Saturday (sad, but there you have it). I should like to resurrect the Cold As Charity thread because I'm baffled as to why people who all, in their own way, want to be decent and "do good" without being "do-gooders", end up fighting - with or without kitchen utensils as weapons. Historically has it always been so, with people always arguing how best to "deal with" the "deserving poor" and the "sturdy beggars"? The latter group also usually end up pretty p*ssed off; and round and round the drama triangle everybody goes. I recall the Exeter Cathedral cheese pasty/"No, you f*ck off, but eat the pasty first" incident (see old thread). But perhaps the appropriate moment for any such discussion has passed.

I haven't a clue - does anyone? - what Jesus of Nazareth would say were we to ask him, "Do you advocate tough love or unconditional love?" He would probably doodle in the sand, offer a cryptic parable  and then calmly tell us to go away and work it out for ourselves. He might even recommend we read Erich Fromm's "The Art of Loving"*.

The mother's and the father's attitudes toward the child correspond to the child's own needs. The infant needs mother's unconditional love and care physiologically as well as psychically. The child, after six, begins to need father's love, his authority and guidance. Mother has the function of making him secure in life, father has the function of teaching him, guiding him to cope with those problems with which the particular society the child has been born into confronts him. In the ideal case, mother's love does not try to prevent the child from growing up, does not try to put a premium on helplessness. Mother should have faith in life, hence not be over-anxious, and thus not infect the child with her anxiety. Part of her life should be the wish that the child become independent and eventually separate from her. Father's love should be guided by principles and expectations; it should be patient and tolerant, rather than threatening and authoritarian. It should give the growing child an increasing sense of competence and eventually permit him to become his own authority and to dispense with that of father.

Eventually, the mature person has come to the point where he is his own mother and his own father. He has, as it were, a motherly and a fatherly conscience. Motherly conscience says: "There is no misdeed, no crime which could deprive you of my love, of my wish for your life and happiness."  Fatherly conscience says: "You did wrong, you cannot avoid accepting certain consequences of your wrongdoing, and most of all you must change your ways if I am to like you." The mature person has become free from the outside mother and father figures, and has built them up inside. In contrast to Freud's concept of the super-ego, however, he has built them inside not by incorporating mother and father, but by building a motherly conscience on his own capacity for love, and fatherly conscience on his reason and judgment. Further more, the mature person loves with both the motherly and the fatherly conscience, in spite of the fact that they seem to contradict each other. If he would only retain his fatherly conscience, he would become harsh and inhuman.  If he would only retain his motherly conscience, he would be apt to lose judgment and to hinder himself and others in their development.



Before anyone's hackles start rising, may I point out that the wise and sane Fromm was an atheist and is described by many "Christians" as an "ungodly man". Why I do not know. And as for all the "lunacy", perhaps the only sane thing to do is run a mile from all junkies - religious ones or other. But the kids - they're a different matter.

Meatballs and Salvation - might start a new thread. But perhaps not.

EDIT - An "enabler" is not a good thing to be: it's someone who simply helps or "enables" the person they are "rescuing" to carry on exactly as before - for example the "devoted" woman who "rescues" her alcoholic or abusive partner, time after time after time, "forgiving" him and taking him back ("because I love him so much..." ) - as in Tammy Wynette's paen of praise to the martyred female, Stand By Your Man. "Hero" (or "heroine") or "saviour" is used ironically - it's how such rescuers see themselves. People go round and round on the triangle, taking a turn at different roles. The victim usually turns on the rescuer - becomes a persecutor - the rescuer now is the victim and so the dance goes on. All sounds like dreadful psychobabble, I know, but it's not.


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nordmann
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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Wed 04 Jan 2017, 13:46

Refusing a hungry person a second dollop of soup isn't tough love, which is why I took issue with the person who said it. I am all for tough love, myself, at least if it means as I have always thought it to mean - that you impose restraints upon a person for whom you have assumed responsibility for their social education when they behave selfishly, self-indulgently or stupidly and expect your compliance and support. This was not that kind of scenario, not in the slightest.

I also take issue with the phrase "charity" in these situations too. Religious sensibilities aside, my experience is that those who think they are motivated through a duty to be charitable - as opposed to those who simply are providing a service out of kindness or a simple willingness to help others in need of it - rarely are properly prepared mentally for what they actually encounter when dealing with "difficult" clients. The Christians this year (this is the first year we have combined our efforts with them and I assume the last) had a double disadvantage in that many of them were thus ill-prepared on the grounds of their motive to be there, as well as having one palpable creep as their so-called "spiritual leader" and role model, a man whose favour they obviously hoped to achieve. Some were ok (a few better than ok) but the majority were not, and in fact complicated an already difficult task immeasurably through their behaviour.

I don't see the relevance of Fromm's observation either, and in fact nor do I necessarily agree with it. A "motherly" and "fatherly" conscience sounds sexist to me, as if women are not capable of reason and men are not capable of unconditional love for their children. It is never wise to generalise to that extent, and nor is it an indication of sanity or insanity to be so presumptive either. If Fromm was either wise or sane it is not evident from the passage you quote, and if his atheism is relevant this is not immediately obvious either.

The simple fact is that this service is required all year round and in the society in which I live is very dependent on voluntary contribution. For these people Christmas poses several extra problems on top of those with which they already have to cope so even more such effort is required. Christian charities kick into overdrive too at this time of year and in this city this means that their provision of facilities normally not available can temporarily be factored into the logistical challenge of meeting this need effectively. It appeared to make sense to combine efforts, and to a certain degree it did in fact allow us to help more people more efficiently than in previous years. However the consensus afterwards was that if we do this again as a joint effort we will require a non-religious organisation, such as the Red Cross, to take the administrative role. The clientele were largely suspicious of the effort this year, I noticed, purely because it appeared to be run by the Lutheran Church. In fact it ran despite their involvement rather than because of it, and things became easier when this became apparent to those who mattered most.

The bishop had already said that he will not entertain this arrangement again anyway, which in practical terms means simply that we will have fewer of his protegees on board in future, a requirement to source a centrally located venue with kitchen facilities (we think we have already found one), and without his daily pilfering of protein a lot more food to dish out too. The Salvation Army will play a larger role this time. They have even promised to learn a few Sex Pistols and Jokke og Valinterne tunes for the singalong. Now that's a religion I can tolerate.
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Temperance
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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Wed 04 Jan 2017, 14:03

OK.

Thanks, nordmann.

Happy New Year.

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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Wed 04 Jan 2017, 14:24

This the rant thread. But I'll sneak in a "i like måte" (as they say here) to you too. Cheers

We're about to have a sudden cold snap here and the Sally Army, who have literally only just agreed to work with us, have already set up emergency hostels we can use. The police have also offered cell accommodation (it sounds worse than it is - when the temperature drops below minus ten any indoor option is welcome). The Kirke Bymisjon (Church City Mission) will also work with us, though I notice the bish and his premises are not involved. These were the guys we thought we were going to be dealing with over the Christmas and they run many great programmes all year round - just in case you thought I was having a go at the whole Christian thing. I suspect they were absent from the picture because they know the bishop well. There are some people it is impossible to feel charitable towards, and he's right up on top, I reckon, even for many of his fellow Christians.
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Temperance
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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Wed 18 Jan 2017, 10:04

Like lots of people I am having a "dry" January - I have not had an alcoholic drink since Boxing Day. I am sleeping better, my skin looks (a bit) younger, and my eyes are definitely brighter. I have lost a couple of pounds. All very good - why then am I  feeling somewhat glum? Trump, Brexit and not having a clue what The Young Pope is about can't be the only reasons for the cosmic gloom I am experiencing at the moment.

A study (from 2008, but I've never come across it before) suggests that depression in mice can be caused by sudden abstinence from alcohol.



...according to a study from the University of North Carolina, becoming suddenly teetotal can reduce the brain’s ability to produce new neurons, cells which have a role in regulating stress levels.

Professor Clyde Hodge, who led the latest research, said: “Our work establishes a link between abstinence from alcohol drinking and depression.

In mice that voluntarily drank alcohol for 28 days, depression-like behaviour was evident 14 days after termination of alcohol drinking.

This suggests that people who stop drinking may experience negative mood states days or weeks after the alcohol has cleared their systems.

This research provides the first evidence that long-term abstinence from moderate alcohol drinking leads to a negative mood state, depression."

The study also found that treatment with an antidepressant drug during 14 days of abstinence prevented the development of depression, and restored the capability of the brain to produce new cells.

The mice were tested for depression-like behaviour using a widely recognised method called the Porsolt Swim Test.

Each rodent was placed inside a beaker filled with water and allowed to swim for six minutes.

The amount of time they spend immobile - floating and not swimming - was measured as an index of despair or depression-like behaviour.

The more time a mouse spends immobile, the more “depressed” it was thought to be.





Poor, despairing little mice. Actually, I think if someone put me in a beaker of water and left me there I'd be pretty p*ssed off, too. So, metaphorically speaking, I too am immobile - floating, not swimming. But I am not quite in despair - I am waving, not drowning. I'm just a bit bored to be honest. A nice glass of Chateauneuf-du-Pape would help (later, I hasten to add - not at 10.04 am).

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/2279433/Giving-up-alcohol-can-lead-to-depression.html



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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Wed 18 Jan 2017, 12:38

A neat choice of research topic  that one -  and doubtless well funded. Put the mice in a glass of water and see what it looks like when we get back from the pub. 
Choosing such lines of 'study' is an art. I guess you must find a notion which everyone knows to be a truth and then find easy and artful ways of proving it and then sending the findings for big font headings to any news outlet that indulges the gullible.

I expect you do think you look better, Temps. On the other hand when you were enjoying jolly sips did you bother to look into a mirror? I have given up sprouts since Christmas and my finger nails have never looked so good...... or at least I think they look better - all right longer then.
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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Wed 18 Jan 2017, 12:53

I don't "think" it, missus, I know it - others have commented, while trying to tempt me to break my vow of abstinence -  so there.

I'm eating a bar of chocolate at the moment to stop me opening a bottle of Chateauneuf-du-Jude. Switched addictions, you see - I'll have lovely, hydrated skin by the end of January, but be enormously fat.

@Priscilla wrote:
... that indulges the gullible.


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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Wed 18 Jan 2017, 15:01

I'm still holding out...

Hard for all us despairing rodents, though...

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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Wed 18 Jan 2017, 16:02

Dear God, Temp, why would anyone choose to deprive themselves of one of life's consolations in January of all times and this one in particular as the gloom thickens?

Reading your link about the latest indignity visited upon those poor wee mice, it occurs to me that since Douglas Adams was probably spot on in what he said regarding the white mice (as with so much else like the beneficial effect of staying drunk while making the jump to hyperspace or to living in a hyper reality show) and so the current state of the world must be all down to them exacting their devious revenge for what our species has done to theirs.


                                                                             


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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Wed 18 Jan 2017, 16:04

To Temps - Never believe anyone who says you look better. Why are they looking at you so intently in the first place? When I told my old mum she was looking better she said she knew then she was on the way out. So I gave her a brandy and a straw..... having told the Dr who thought it was a good decision. Still, hold firm to the sticking place etc. What did WS mean by sticking place? And you will not call me missus, missus - hmmpf.


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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Wed 18 Jan 2017, 21:14

Temperance, I misread one of your posts above as "VPL" - I thought it sounded a bit lowbrow for you, not like Temperance to be commenting on the visible panty line but of course it was VPR - my mistake...sorry.

More generally, I gave up wine when I found out something from a fish is used in its production - so it's not vegetarian strictly speaking.  There are vegetarian wines but they aren't cheap. Today I had an email from the Coeliac Society (which I have joined on the advice of the dietician I saw at the hospital) regarding items available in January and special offers.  Actually as far I could tell only two were really "offers" one for £50 off a £199.99 (well it's £200 really, isn't it?) breadmaker for coeliacs and the other was an offer to buy seaweed pasta at a reduced price!  As a lady I know said, it's the ingredients of a bread that make it gluten free rather than the breadmaker used I would think. The newsletter did mention that an alcoholic ginger beer was available though not on special offer.  I was never that keen on ginger beer in any case.  Stating the obvious it's the amount of alcohol one consumes that counts - when I go out I usually have something like J2O or WKD these days if I have an alcoholic drink.

Somebody DID say they hadn't recognised me at first when they saw me today, but that was because I'd had my hair cut a LOT shorter in December.  A veritable urchin cut but unfortunately I can't manage the Audrey Hepburn degree of cuteness.
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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Thu 19 Jan 2017, 09:21

@Priscilla wrote:
Still, hold firm to the sticking place etc. What did WS mean by sticking place?


It's from Macbeth:

Lady Macbeth:

But screw your courage to the sticking-place,
And we'll not fail.


People argue about whether this image refers to the "screwing-up" of strings on a musical instrument - usually a viol is mentioned - or whether it has a more martial significance.

I remember being told that the metaphor was actually suggested by a soldier screwing up the cord of his cross-bow to the "sticking-place", and that this interpretation is more likely, given that Macbeth was a soldier. It's also reinforced by a line at the end of the scene when Macbeth tells his wife: "I am settled and bend up/ Each corporal agent to this terrible feat."

The archery image makes more sense to me, being an appropriate thing to say to a warrior (can't imagine Macbeth playing a viol somehow); but I don't really understand the bending bit because I know nothing about crossbows. I suppose archers bent over when preparing their crossbows for fire?

Did not have a drink yesterday, although sorely tempted. I feel extremely virtuous and horribly healthy this morning. It will be four weeks on Monday without a drop. I'm supposed to go the whole of January, but I think four weeks counts as a whole month, so will probably be back to normal then. Odd how boring things and people can be without drink. That's a really bad sign, I suppose...
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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Thu 19 Jan 2017, 10:17

@Temperance wrote:

I remember being told that the metaphor was actually suggested by a soldier screwing up the cord of his cross-bow to the "sticking-place", and that this interpretation is more likely, given that Macbeth was a soldier. It's also reinforced by a line at the end of the scene when Macbeth tells his wife: "I am settled and bend up/ Each corporal agent to this terrible feat."

The archery image makes more sense to me, being an appropriate thing to say to a warrior (can't imagine Macbeth playing a viol somehow); but I don't really understand the bending bit because I know nothing about crossbows. I suppose archers bent over when preparing their crossbows for fire?

There are several methods of spanning a crossbow (ie drawing the string back): if the bow is not very powerful it can simply be done by hand: usually one put the bow end on the ground and steadied it with a foot on the bow or through a stirrup, and then bent down, grasped the bow string and straightened up to pull it back ... sometimes using a hook on a shoulder strap or on the belt to make it easier and to save the fingers. More powerful crossbows had to be spanned using a variety of mechanical devices:  such as a windlass; or a lever arrangement; or a geared rack-and-pinion ... but regardless of the mechanism used, it was usually done by putting bow end on the ground with a foot through the stirrup, and then bending over to operate the mechanism. In all cases the bow cord was pulled back until it engaged in the end of the trigger device, which is presumably what WS refers to as the "sticking place", though it was usually called the nut.

         


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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Thu 19 Jan 2017, 10:26

Marks and Sparks sent me an email this morning telling me that all sorts of bonuses and special offers were waiting for me because of my "Sparks" card. I had to open a special envelope which would  reveal the especially exciting "exclusive" offer that had been selected just for me, important person that I am. All atremble with anticipation as to what this M&S delight would turn out to be, I clicked on the "Open Bonus" box to discover:


30% off chilled cod & haddock

In Store    only  

Use within 6 days


CLAIM BONUS



Thank you so much, M&S marketing people. Nothing like a bit of reduced price chilled wet fish to cheer one up during a gloomy and teetotal January. My cup runneth over and probably will do with a good red wine before this day is done.


PS LiR, all these special foods are the new rip-off, aren't they - especially annoying for people who have a genuine diagnosis of a food intolerance or sensitivity: I blame Gwyneth Paltrow.

PPS Crossed posts, MM - haven't got time to reply now, but thanks. Ah - pictures look interesting.


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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Thu 19 Jan 2017, 12:58

MM - sorry I had to dash off earlier without really reading your response. Your post and the pictures you've dug out show how the Shakespeare lines - referring to a weapon and not a musical instrument - make complete sense. Thank you for bothering to check that out.
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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Thu 19 Jan 2017, 13:54

The term "bending" in relation to archery also applied, in a slightly different sense, to the English longbow, where it could mean simply bending the bow by drawing the string, but also to bend oneself to the bow by putting one's whole body weight into drawing it:

"[My yeoman father] taught me how to draw, how to lay my body in my bow ... not to draw with strength of arms as divers other nations do ... I had my bows bought me according to my age and strength, as I increased in them, so my bows were made bigger and bigger. For men shall never shoot well unless they be brought up to it."

Hugh Latimer (circa 1550)

and,

" ... the Englishman did not keep his left hand steady, and draw his bow with his right; but keeping his right at rest upon the nerve, he pressed the whole weight of his body into the horns of his bow. Hence probably arose the phrase "bending the bow," and the French of "drawing".

W Gilpin 'Forest Scenery' (1791)


PS

Temps quoting Shakespeare wrote:

But screw your courage to the sticking-place,
And we'll not fail.


Why would Macbeth need to "screw his courage" if he was only tuning a viol? Spanning and loading a tightly-strung, trigger-ready crossbow makes a lot more sense ... especially considering that when tuning a viol there is no actual "sticking place", one just turns the tuning peg a little this way or a bit that way, until it sounds right.
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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Thu 19 Jan 2017, 18:07

MM wrote:

PS
Temps quoting Shakespeare wrote:

But screw your courage to the sticking-place,
And we'll not fail.

Why would Macbeth need to "screw his courage" if he was only tuning a viol? Spanning and loading a tightly-strung, trigger-ready crossbow makes a lot more sense ... especially considering that when tuning a viol there is no actual "sticking place", one just turns the tuning peg a little this way or a bit that way, until it sounds right.


I agree entirely with you, MM. I was merely repeating interpretations I have been given, or have read about.

The music image is still mentioned: see link below. And I've just checked my "Arden" edition of the play (Arden edition of all WW's stuff is reckoned to be pretty good because the footnotes are longer than the plays) and found this:

But...sticking place.
Murry* "Shakespeare" pp.328-9 describes the significance of this image, derived perhaps from the screwing up of the strings of a viol. But Paton and Liddell think the metaphor was suggested by a soldier screwing up the cord of his cross-bow to the "sticking place." cf. l.80 below.


* Murry refers to the famous critic John Middleton Murry.

But the following rather more recent entry on the internet confirms that the "martial" reference is indeed the one now widely accepted, although the musical reference is still noted. I think your point about courage not being needed for playing a viol is spot on. What has courage got to do with playing a musical instrument (unless one is an absolutely hopeless performer who fears being booed off by the audience)? Just doesn't make sense - unless the idea of "tension" (tightening of strings/sinews) is considered. But that's pushing the explanation too far, I think. I stick with the crossbow explanation.

http://www.worldwidewords.org/qa/qa-scr3.htm

A writer in Notes and Queries in December 1869 instead suggested the image of a contemporary soldier, “with his crossbow planted at an angle against the ground, screwing its cord by means of a kind of windlass to ‘the sticking-place,’ or catch, by which it will be held at furthest stretch.” This has also been put forward by other writers and it’s accepted by most modern editors of the play. It’s supported by a line later on in the scene: “I am settled, and bend up / Each corporeal agent to this terrible feat”, where by “bend up” it’s accepted Macbeth is referring to the stringing of a longbow. A martial image would make sense when discussing a murder.

As things stand, however, we’ve no way of deciding for certain which allusion, if either, is what Shakespeare had in mind.
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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Fri 20 Jan 2017, 08:06

@ferval wrote:
 

Dear God, Temp, why would anyone choose to deprive themselves of one of life's consolations in January of all times and this one in particular as the gloom thickens?  


It's become a point of honour, ferval.

I know no one here is the least bit interested, but I'm still holding out grimly. I am determined to get to January 31st in my present healthy and bright-eyed state. Could this become a way of life, an alternative to religion? Have I been saved (joke)? Should I start a thread on The Temperance Movement - the Benefits?

Seriously, not drinking really is like religious addiction: the sense of moral superiority and horrible smugness is appalling. I don't like this in myself, although I now seem to be suddenly very popular with friends - I have become very useful to everyone as a taxi service.  Mmm.


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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Fri 10 Feb 2017, 14:30

Brilliant rant......er sketch from Patrick Stewart -



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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Sun 19 Feb 2017, 12:22

Now that we have the very epitome of the useful idiot in the Oval Office, having mobilised the superfluous to vote for him - and even having paid for the campaign himself - the real masters are quietly getting on with the project. It is perfectly clear that they sacked Flynn when he looked embarrassing and then told the Donald who didn't quite get it, I'm not convinced he does still.  And look at what Congress has been doing, here's a couple of examples that have been enacted, there's lots more in the pipeline.

H.J.Res. 38: Disapproving the rule submitted by the Department of the Interior known as the Stream Protection Rule.
Sponsor: Rep. Bill Johnson [R-OH6]
Introduced: Jan 30, 2017
Enacted — Signed by the President: Feb 16, 2017

H.J.Res. 41: Providing for congressional disapproval under chapter 8 of title 5, United States Code, of a rule submitted by the Securities and Exchange Commission relating to “Disclosure of Payments by Resource Extraction Issuers”.
Sponsor: Rep. Bill Huizenga [R-MI2]
Introduced: Jan 30, 2017
Enacted — Signed by the President: Feb 14, 2017

It's time to stop laughing and being distracted by all the buffoonery and bombast, even the lying, what he says doesn't really matter - he's the magician's glamorous assistant, just there to distract amd entertain the the crowd. If he gets too embarrassing or won't follow instructions, he will be gone too.
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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Mon 20 Feb 2017, 04:56

Quite right ferval, but also difficult when the buffoonery is all the press is focusing on too. There aren't very many reports around about what is happening quietly in the background.

But at least the four suspects in Trump's Swedish Incident have been identified. tin foil and all...




Sorry, couldn't resist. Smile
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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Sat 18 Mar 2017, 12:24

I don't know where to put this - on the RIP thread (hopefully NOT appropriate), here, or even on the Elephant in the Room thread. Possibly should not say anything at all, but I will.

Is our beloved Res Historica site dying? Please, God, no.

Please don't let Res His, like the life of George V, be moving peacefully to its close. Bugger Bogner should be our motto.

Maybe we have all been - well just me really - just a tad too silly recently with daft posts/pics on the  Moggy thread and not-funny Franglais comments. Let us all try harder next week to make some deep and profound statements about Europe going to the dogs, obscure language issues, Scottish Independence and other such serious topics. I shall therefore resist the temptation to post Tracey Ullman being Nicola Sturgeon torturing Andy Murray for calling his child Sophia instead of Moira. Also Angela Merkel and Bridget singing their European Song Contest entry on a London tour bus.

This is no doubt another silly post, but what the heck. I really hope Res His hasn't had it. I for one would miss everyone very much - odd, but there you have it.



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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Sat 18 Mar 2017, 18:08

I for one wouldn't mind a good argument...sorry discussion about whether Europe going to the dogs, Brexit, obscure language issues and Scottish independence. Smile
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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Sat 18 Mar 2017, 20:56

Regarding Res Historica being somewhat moribund. Well, "The White Princess" is apparently due to start airing in April though that may be in the USA, I'm not so sure about the UK https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_White_Princess_(miniseries). Mind you life is short and I had another birthday on St Paddy's Day so I'm not sure I'm going to hate watch it. Time spent hate watching that series would be time I could spend doing something else. It remains to be seen whether the PG thread springs back into life when it airs.

Sometimes I come on here and read the comments without actually posting anything. I quite like the moggy thread but rarely have anything to contribute there. (I don't think pictures of my cat even if I could upload them from my phone would count). Also, while my health has picked up I still come over fatigued at times and don't feel like doing a lot then - including posting though I have made a few comments here and there this week.
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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Sat 18 Mar 2017, 21:23

Temp,

nearly 74 and still not time enough to do all what I want. As I said English and French are not my native tongues but I find it an honour to write correctly and as such I need some time to "compose" my messages. Yes even after all those years, since 2002 at the BBC messageboard, where I met a lot of you, and since 2008 on French fora.
And it all happens to be up and downs. For the moment with several subjects of intensive research as the Kerensky Russian revolution and the possibilities of it on a French forum. Two days of research and still no fair conclusion. And then a "Blut und Boden" thread, which is now finished.
And yes the European Union is an interesting subject overhere...

Kind regards, Paul.
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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Sun 19 Mar 2017, 00:22

Thank you for replying, ID, Paul and LiR.


@Islanddawn wrote:
I for one wouldn't mind a good argument...sorry discussion about whether Europe going to the dogs, Brexit, obscure language issues and Scottish independence. Smile



Language issues - yes, always interesting, but, to be honest, most of us here in the UK seem to be all argued out about the rest. What's done is done and we are just having to make the best of a botched job. We are no longer part of the Community and that's that.

As for Scottish Independence - well someone tonight suggested that it might be a good idea for England to have a referendum on the subject. Do the English actually want to stay "united" with Scotland in this unhappy way? I don't.

We may laugh about these serious issues - make silly jokes here and elsewhere about Europe and Scotland - but that's just an English coping mechanism. We are perfectly aware that it is all a bad business.



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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Sun 19 Mar 2017, 08:07

@Temperance wrote:


As for Scottish Independence - well someone tonight suggested that it might be a good idea for England to have a referendum on the subject. Do the English actually want to stay "united" with Scotland in this unhappy way?

You might have hit on a solution to several problems there Temp. If England itself declared its independence from the UK then it could be argued that the remainding United Kingdom of Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland - along with any other bits that want to stay like maybe Manchester or Northumberland - would be able to maintain the existing membership of the EU whilst allowing the rest of England alone to leave.

Smile

In any event I think a name change would be in order for the new non-EU England ... how about Poundland, Berxitannia, or Little Britain ... or Rump UK (RUK) or perhaps Former UK?

Embarassed


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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Sun 19 Mar 2017, 10:46

There's a lot to be said for that, MM, There is a good argument to be made that Scotland has consistently contributed far more to the UK than any other comparable part - to meantion a few we have run its empire, built its ships, driven much of its intellectual and scientific progress, died in a higher percentage in its wars and for many years our oil bankrolled the economic changes that have driven our own industrial base into the ground: similar things could be said about Welsh coal and Mancunian industrial strength - but we have repeatedly been given empty promises, been patronised and sidelined and had our status as a (very) junior partner forcibly pointed out, usually dressed up with some sentimental guff meant to console us. Yes, there is no huge appetite for another referendum, the pipes are not skirling in the hills and  the clans aren't sharpening their claymores, we're weary and feeling battered and bruised, but I feel, well I hope, that this time there is a more sober, a more considered, a more realistic understanding that to be the nation that we want to be, that we just might be, we must go our own way because the UK that is emerging is so repellent, so foreign, that we cannot, in all conscience, continue as a member.

It's not just the EU membership question, it's something far more fundamental than that although that is symptomatic (we always find the ingrained antipathy of the English to the French baffling for a start) it's being constantly characterised as 'whinging jocks' when we dare to complain about anything (remoaners may sympathise with that) and as sulky, ungrateful weans who really don't know whats good for them.  

Too wee, too poor, too stupid, Well, this time round we might find out if that's true.
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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Sun 19 Mar 2017, 11:40

We are wryly calling ourselves Poundland now, MM, and you must have seen - perhaps not - the David Walliams/Matt Lucas Little Britain series? All old hat now, but Vicky Pollard came to symbolise the new Britannia for us all here in our sad little (half of the) island. It's a shame for us, but there you have it. We must just soldier on, like we do, remembering "you're going to reap what you sow", as Lou Reed once pointed out. Manchester will stay with Little Britain, I think, but the Cornish will definitely go. See if we care. They can take their scones with jam on first and their horrible, greasy pasties with them.

Perhaps the final duel scene from Rob Roy will delight you all: Tim Roth is absolutely superb as the dastardly villain (English) who well and truly gets his comeuppance. The ritual of the duel and the fencing technique displayed by Roth (or his stand-in for the real fighting) are fascinating. The hero, Rob Roy ( Liam Neeson playing a Scot with an Irish accent - ideal choice for the part), is fighting for his life, despite being handicapped by a bad wound (which he bravely conceals). He still does very well indeed, as you would expect. It's a cracking fight scene.




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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Sun 19 Mar 2017, 11:57

Well quite Feral ... which is why I deliberately mentioned Northumberland as a possibly wanting to stay with Scotland. My dad's family were all Northumbrian/Border folk (originally, 1700s, from Fife) and they generally identified themselves more with Scotland than with England (which Granny certainly considered as only starting once you'd crossed the Tyne bridge to Gateshead).

Temp, I've never seen Little Britain but I was aware of it, which is why I suggested it Wink . Perhaps it could take its slogan from ... was it the Fast Show? ... "A local country - for local people".

But talking of inappropriate names for an independent England ... I see that Whitehall has come up with "Empire 2.0" as a title for the renewed push to forge trade relations with Commonwealth countries. It was probably meant rather tongue-in-cheek, but just to mention it publically shows how out of touch some of these government officials are. I can't see that going down at all well with India, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Kenya .... or indeed any other ex-Empire 1.0 countries.
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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Sun 19 Mar 2017, 13:18

Oh gawd, don't get me started on the Empire 02...the thought of being bossed around again does not sit well with Commonwealth countries at all.

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/mar/19/empire-20-is-dangerous-nostalgia-for-something-that-never-existed#comments
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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Sun 19 Mar 2017, 13:25

@ferval wrote:
There's a lot to be said for that, MM, There is a good argument to be made that Scotland has consistently contributed far more to the UK than any other comparable part - to meantion a few we have run its empire, built its ships, driven much of its intellectual and scientific progress, died in a higher percentage in its wars and for many years our oil bankrolled the economic changes that have driven our own industrial base into the ground: similar things could be said about Welsh coal and Mancunian industrial strength - but we have repeatedly been given empty promises, been patronised and sidelined and had our status as a (very) junior partner forcibly pointed out, usually dressed up with some sentimental guff meant to console us. Yes, there is no huge appetite for another referendum, the pipes are not skirling in the hills and  the clans aren't sharpening their claymores, we're weary and feeling battered and bruised, but I feel, well I hope, that this time there is a more sober, a more considered, a more realistic understanding that to be the nation that we want to be, that we just might be, we must go our own way because the UK that is emerging is so repellent, so foreign, that we cannot, in all conscience, continue as a member.

It's not just the EU membership question, it's something far more fundamental than that although that is symptomatic (we always find the ingrained antipathy of the English to the French baffling for a start) it's being constantly characterised as 'whinging jocks' when we dare to complain about anything (remoaners may sympathise with that) and as sulky, ungrateful weans who really don't know whats good for them.  

Too wee, too poor, too stupid, Well, this time round we might find out if that's true.


Nicely said Ferval.

How is TM's high handed treatment of Sturgeon going down in Scotland? I'd have thought that if anything would ensure Scotland voting to leave would be Mayhem clumsily playing the headmistress talking to naughty children act.
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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Sun 19 Mar 2017, 14:15

Ach, ID, we're used to it as we are to people telling us how much they love us and don't want us to go and then seeing stuff like this article in the Telegraph,






Nice, isn't it? It was changed later to this which is, I suppose, at least not incitement to assassination.



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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Sun 19 Mar 2017, 15:24

I saw the original on Twatter the other day, and it was accompainied by much outrage which is why I suspect the Wellygraph were forced to change the headline. That it was written in the first place about the leader of any nation is a disgrace, and them rewriting it doesn't change that.

At the time of the first Scottish ref I didn't think it made a lot of financial sense for Scotland to leave, but Brexit has changed everything now. What an utter mess the Tories have made and are still making.
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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Sun 19 Mar 2017, 15:58

@Temperance wrote:
Manchester will stay with Little Britain, I think, but the Cornish will definitely go. See if we care. They can take their scones with jam on first and their horrible, greasy pasties with them.

That looks back to front Temp. I'm pretty sure Manchester voted Remain while Cornwall voted Leave.
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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Mon 20 Mar 2017, 07:56

@Vizzer wrote:
@Temperance wrote:
Manchester will stay with Little Britain, I think, but the Cornish will definitely go. See if we care. They can take their scones with jam on first and their horrible, greasy pasties with them.

That looks back to front Temp. I'm pretty sure Manchester voted Remain while Cornwall voted Leave.



How very confusing these plebiscites have become, Vizzer:  no one seems to know in the DK anymore whether they are coming or going or staying. I think in the next round Manchester will vote unilaterally to remain in the EU and England (called having your Eccles cake and eating it), but the Cornish, who this very weekend have been bleating again about English "oppression" (which is apparently particularly bad in Bude), just want to leave everything and everywhere. No one would actually notice if they did. They don't call it Bude the Obscure for nothing.

What actually is the difference between a plebiscite and a referendum? I looked in Wiki and got myself in a right old muddle:

Some definitions of 'plebiscite' suggest that it is a type of vote to change the constitution or government of a country. However, some other countries define it differently. For example, Australia defines 'referendum' as a vote to change the constitution, and 'plebiscite' as a vote that does not affect the constitution. In Ireland, the vote to adopt its constitution was called a "plebiscite", but a subsequent vote to amend the constitution is called a 'referendum', and so is a poll of the electorate on a non-constitutional bill.


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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Mon 20 Mar 2017, 08:01

Remaining within the UK or not should follow from very different criteria than those used to decide EU membership. It is noticeable how this is singularly misunderstood in England in both the media and Westminster (and presumably by many of its subjects), while it is painfully understood all too well by Scots from what I can see.

It reminds me of Irish history, and how whenever the Irish agitated most strongly to get the hell out of the so-called "union" they were told they had simply posed an interesting "Irish Question". If a perfectly good answer has already been provided by those most in need of one then identifying the "question" by any other mob seems superfluous to say the least.

Temp: Crossed posts but an interesting question you pose. In a society in which people, unprotected by an actual written constitution and only citizens when deemed to be now and again by their rulers - who otherwise treat them as subjects - then the definition of "referendum" is hardly much different from "opinion poll". Those who have been accused of being really thick in voting for Brexit actually, at some very deep level, probably understood this innately. Not that this makes them intelligent, just exemplary subjects probably.
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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Mon 20 Mar 2017, 08:08

@nordmann wrote:
Those who have been accused of being really thick in voting for Brexit actually, at some very deep level, actually probably understood this innately.

Yes - and I have actually been saying that all along. I actually quite like the "great unwashed", as they have been called. Got to know them quite well during the last thirty-five years. They are not as daft - thick - as some people believe.

Edit: you have edited your post since I sent above, adding the word "intelligent". Intelligence can be a dodgy quality. I'm wary of the "intelligent": such privileged folk can and do regularly make an awful mess of things - just like the "thickies" in fact.
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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Mon 20 Mar 2017, 08:36

"Intelligent" - as opposed to clever - presupposes a high quality of discernment between alternative interpretations based on a thorough comprehension of these interpretations and the facts upon which they are based.

I would never use that term for anyone involved in the whole Brexit "referendum" fiasco. I have too much respect for language. What the "great unwashed" did apparently comprehend however, and with remarkably consistent astuteness, was that their actual role as mere subjects - however it was being dressed up by their most insincere "betters" - rendered their opinion ultimately worthless. The best they could hope for was a poke in the eye for these "betters", and they delivered one. That much was commendable, in much the same way as one might admire a small child's audacity in sticking a similarly sharp object in the eye of a sleeping rottweiler. The commendation is very short lived.
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Islanddawn
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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Mon 20 Mar 2017, 11:57

@nordmann wrote:
Remaining within the UK or not should follow from very different criteria than those used to decide EU membership. It is noticeable how this is singularly misunderstood in England in both the media and Westminster (and presumably by many of its subjects), while it is painfully understood all too well by Scots from what I can see.


It hasn't escaped my notice either, Mayhem speaks like Scotland is merely another county and not a nation in it's own right and thereby completely misunderstanding the word union. Which I think has been Brexiters main problem with the EU as well, a union necessitates compromise and England have never been great in that department.
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LadyinRetirement
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PostSubject: Re: The Daily Rant    Mon 20 Mar 2017, 16:24

Although my late mother used to take it I don't very often read the Torygraph so am unfamiliar with Allison Pearson or her journalism.  I know the headline(s) about Nicola Sturgeon are probably tongue in cheek but it looks like she's been (Ms P not Ms S) studying how to irritate Scots people.


Last edited by LadyinRetirement on Mon 20 Mar 2017, 21:19; edited 1 time in total
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