The General Discussion Thread

[Publish Date updated to restore to front page]

Okay as an experiment here it is. Discuss your favourite generals here!

Well perhaps… Really this is simply the place to post news-items, fun-items or whatever takes your fancy. In short just post what you want here.

It’s just another wee experiment – comments welcome.


[Image: General Sir Anthony Cecil Hogmanay Melchett (Stephen Fry)]

13,285 thoughts on “The General Discussion Thread

  1. Clark; Media used to have boundaries. Advertising was always recognized as vested-interest information until the last several decades. When NEWS recognized the advantage of blurring the lines between selling products and informing the public without prejudice, they suddenly discovered NEWS can be a profitable department within the organization. The major US networks used to have a policy of exempting the NEWS from proctology to keep them autonomous. shenanigans still occurred, of course. Many people don’t know how the icon Walter Cronkite quietly manipulated behind the scenes to assist the re-election of Eisenhower in 1956 over Adlai Stevenson.

  2. Ben, 3:11 pm: grief, the corruption of news – I can feel a rant coming on…

    Information is a necessary resource like any other. Now if I go out to buy toothpaste or engine oil, the vendor does not start trying to influence the way I vote. So why should news be so different? I need to know what’s going on in the world, so I turn to some media source but lo, the news is all scrambled together with political manipulation – and this is so usual that it’s considered normal, even inevitable.

    A couple of decades back me and my woman-friend of the time got an old TV set. We had little money and I dislike actual TV, so we started using Teletext as our news source. There was only room for about a thousand alphanumeric characters per page which is barely enough to cram in the basic facts. I came to quite like it. Of course, it was still susceptible to propaganda by omission, but it had a certain purity.

  3. Don”t be too hard on news outlets. I truly believe their profit motive compels them to attract viewers/readers and those folks could change format/content by their withholding their patronage. Media mostly caters to their wants/needs out of self interest.

  4. Ben, no, I don’t think the people get either the government or the media they ask for.

    Media consolidation. Where once there were thousands of broadcast media outlets, now there are merely dozens. We get the mass-media Big Money wants us to have.

    And that warps democracy.

  5. Clark; Not to say they aren’t taking full advantage of the cat being asleep while the mice play, but there is either a lack of interest or time for the average Joe to keep informed and avoid manipulation.

    But I have to disagree it’s merely the fewer numbers of corps controlling the information highway. It’s also complacency and laziness that makes it work so well.

    You aren’t a typical consumer, Clark. Why don’t more people rise up to change the metrics?

  6. Ben, I agree that lack of time is a major reason. And yes, “It’s also complacency and laziness that makes it work so well.”

  7. Ben, it’s taken me years at Craig’s to even begin to understand how funding apparently enemy Islamists serves Neocon objectives, and I’m sure I still have much to learn. On television news, I’d probably never even hear the word “Neocon”.

  8. The triangulations for neocon objectives are infinite and unknowable for anyone, especially them. One thing is for sure; creating havoc serves a purpose, and that rarely benefits Joe Lunchbucket. Chaos makes ripeness amongst the foreign opposition. Their arrogance lies in their confidence that they can spin a response for their advantage for every circumstance they don’t foresee. Iraq is an example.

    Even now they spin the success of that intervention and many, many amongst the voting block, buy that analysis, even if not the majority, who see it as a failure beyond measure. Iran is their current target, along with Russia, and their failures to reign in by opposing the current agreement, is something they recognize as a policy failure via Iraq; though not publicly admitted.

  9. Ben, I don’t think the Neocons will attack Russia; it has weapon of mass destruction. They went after Ukraine which had none. And I think Putin’s mob didn’t mind too much, because they got to pick up the scraps the Neocon’s couldn’t hold on to. No one forced the Kremlin to thwart Euromaiden so harshly.

  10. Clark; Neocons are chicken-hawks. They don’t have any weapons except propaganda and close ties with power brokers. The Right Sector is populated with fascists adored by neocons. Neocons have old grudges from the Cold War they can’t let go of. It’s a perfect marriage against the remnants of an old enemy who still has some power and they can’t stand to see them emerge from Marxism to steal the thunder from the Capitalists of Old, Neocons revisited. You probably see this attitude from Tories. They love to steal wealth legally, but can’t stand it when Labour members thrive economically from the disparity the Tories (Neocons) created for their OWN benefit.

  11. The new Moderation guidelines for Craig Murray’s blog are already showing beneficial effects, the Moderators are applying them with discernment and skill and the blog has already become a much healthier (there is no other word for it) place. The air is somehow….cleaner.

  12. ‘discernment and skill’ lol

    A reference to Greece and ‘Euroseptic’ merited a mod. Rule nazi’s from Poroshenko’s arse.

    Sorry AA. I call ’em as I see ’em.

  13. “The new Moderation guidelines for Craig Murray’s blog are already showing beneficial effects, the Moderators are applying them with discernment and skill and the blog has already become a much healthier (there is no other word for it) place. The air is somehow….cleaner.”

    I disagree.

    The moderator allows openly racist comments, like “He lives in my country, Scotland, yet loves posting anti Scottish diatribes.”.

    The SNP is not Scotland, the majority of Scots voted against independence, I have a right to my political opinions and I have a right to express them without intimidation and harassment from Nationalist blackshirts.

    Either the moderator can delete the personal abuse or allow me to return the abuse I don’t much care which but if they allow the abuse and delete my reply then they are are not moderators they are censors.

  14. Fred; “but if they allow the abuse and delete my reply then they are are not moderators they are censors”

    Welcome to the “out of favour club” ! The Mods at CM’s have been consistently doing exactly that to me for years now !

    (Clark would have you believe it that it’s just consistent “mistakes” ! LOL ! )

  15. “Welcome to the “out of favour club” ! The Mods at CM’s have been consistently doing exactly that to me for years now !”

    You deserve it.

    I have a policy of not making personal comments about other posters unless they attack me first.

    You seem to do little else but criticise other posters.

  16. @Fred, I had you down as a maverick, but you’ve just confirmed you are actually a fully qualified member of the Axis-of-the-Dim !

  17. Fred, I don’t think we know if “the majority of Scots voted against independence”, because it depends what you mean by “Scots”. If you just mean people entitled to vote in the referendum then it’s so, but others may prefer other definitions of “Scots”. I’ve never seen any statistical breakdowns, not even according to how people self-identify – there must have been plenty who wouldn’t call themselves Scots who were entitled to vote.

  18. “Fred, have you replied? Was it deleted? I expect a “FOAD” would get deleted, but a reasoned argument might not.”

    I don’t respond to personal attacks with reasoned argument, somebody wants a fight I come out fighting.

  19. “Fred, I had you down as a maverick, but you’ve just confirmed you are actually a fully qualified member of the Axis-of-the-Dim !”

    Personally I couldn’t give a shit what you think of me so fuck off and die.

  20. Thanks Fred, I had been feeling left out for quite a long while now, and so sorry for making you actually give a shit for this great honour ! 😀

  21. Fred, your correspondent probably didn’t regard his comment as a personal attack. Some of he things you’ve posted about people in Glasgow could be taken as offensive, as could your “Nationalist blackshirts” remark above.

  22. @Macky only..

    … As my last comments on CM are under pre mod and i’m not going on their again. I’ll summarize in case they don’t appear. For ME they are all basically the Gentry, ‘men of best quality’ who twist slander and aim to get at people in the worst way just to ‘maintain’ some minor blog. Ie Stop any real critical voices to it’s meme. Political ends crossfireing. leaks can be published most anywhere. Some people are milder and ok seeming, but 99% still that sort, the fascists where mostly nice people also. They we’re just above other people ‘naturally’. And maintained a tight order. It’s crazy to me to see it on CM’s blog so reflected, and I don’t see my odd comments as a big thing. I can help people with physical disabilities so should focus on that some….

    Craig can’t even get in the SNP. (It’s really nothing much even if he was PM imo….Really) And look how they act, it’s crazy.

  23. …O and I did wonder if you are on any other blogs, for friendly chat perhaps. whatever

    …It’s not that these people are to much for me, I don’t look at it like that. But I hope I never have the misfortune of being around this kind of company again, it’s spirit corroding for me, and again, nothing much happening. navel gazing…And blocking support. Again not that the blog itself is much odds…nuff said..

    All the best, I know I don’t know you well over the net but you come across ok. Fun. I’ll read any replies but won’t post again on here. 🙂 take care.

  24. “Fred, your correspondent probably didn’t regard his comment as a personal attack. Some of he things you’ve posted about people in Glasgow could be taken as offensive, as could your “Nationalist blackshirts” remark above.”

    Well if the moderator in any use at all he should have seen it for what it is, racist abuse.

    I don’t take all the things said about Westminster personally so how come nationalists take criticism of Holyrood or the SNP personally? Because they are fanatical brainwashed nationalist cult members that is why.

    What remains to be seen is whether the moderator is a fanatical nationalist who will allow the blackshirts to harass and intimidate or not.

  25. 🙂 Can’t resist it, it’s fascinating, (No i’m not going back to CMs.)

    So the meme seems to be, “I’m” (meaning Craig’s blog) bias and unfair and that’s ok? I’d say we all are, and yes that’s fine, individually and all being equal. But we are not.

    Imo. Do NOT give Craig your energy. He has plenty, full of it. Full of himself. I can’t believe I was so correct. It’s your privilege to post, and yes you are contributing and supporting…The blog…Craig.

    It will be just Ba’al soon. Maybe RD, (Mary if she is still about) and a few hangers on.

    I got some good screens of phil’s comments (old reactionary habit) 🙂

    Fred. You made the first personnel attacking comment about Macky above…And I can’t understand someone who backs the UK as an anti-nationalist, anti “Blackshirts” guy. Your certainly not and anarchist are you. And the SNP though a bunch of corporate politicians are not that harmful. Though i’m closer to your disdain of them than I was.

    Note there is no personal attacks in their, just points.

    No i’m not back to stay. Just an interesting general discussion of current subjects.

  26. His supporters are shit on his shoe to him imo. Contest me on this if you like. But I think reality speaks for itself..

  27. @Ishmael, yes all pretense is off, like one of the aliens in V, Craig’s mask of hypocrisy has finally fallen off ; the Blog that misleadingly advertises itself as a “Human Rights Whilsterblower’s Blog”, has really ever been only about one thing, how an embittered Establishment ex-insider, hits back at those & the system that kicked him out; All this “Human Rights” stuff is just a means to an end for Craig, who is at heart very much remain the reactionary authoritarian, the standard product of his FO background, remembering that he cut his teeth on supervising the Iraqi embargo regime, rising to the highs of being one of the UK youngest Ambassadors under the ghoul Tony Blair; he now plays lip-service & gate keeping role iro supposedly supporting all that Assange & Snowden represents, but in reality he is much more concerned with promoting himself, promoting his reactionary social views, pro-war Roussophobia, and he can barely disguise his attempt for genuine figures of the Left, hence not a word on the passing of Tony Benn, hence the odd snipe derogatory comment iro Galloway, etc

    As all of this has gradually become more & more apparent to people, many of the good original commentators to his blog, started to fall away, and the result is what we have now, a handful of decent posters ,outnumbered by the super dense Craig-bots loyalists plus the slyly protected useful Trolls.

    I did a test post this morning and sure enough suddenly I’m on pre-mod also, so they declared a “Free fire zone”, invited people to freely express themselves, but didn’t like what people freely said & suddenly these people are now sanctioned ! Shameless !

    As for other blogs, I was quite active on the Channel Four forum until they couldn’t cope which the mocking of their & ‘MSM’s slanted coverage of news, so they shut it down; I do follow & occasionally post at Media Lens, but due to its set-up of the fast moving message board, it’s not really designed to have long meaningful engagements; I’ve yet to find a decent UK focus blog, so am open to suggestions.

    I enjoyed our banter, valued your interesting insights, and appreciated all the quality quotes & links, and sincerely hope that you returns if things improve enough, or we met again else where.

    Edit Bonus !

    I see you also want your “Fuck off & Die” badge of honour from Fred ! 😀

  28. lol,

    Technicolor bating more, lol. No i’m gone mate 🙂 You can’t talk to me because I was moderated then left. O dear, what will I do with the rest of my Technicolor day? 🙂 Ace…

    These people are so stupid it makes stupid a whole other area of study. Extent’s that redefine the genre…. lol. And yes I count myself among the afflicted. It’s these little things that make my day…

  29. “decent UK focus blog, so am open to suggestions.”

    Maybe worth some thought, action.

    “I see you also want your “Fuck off & Die” badge of honour from Fred !”

    What to add to my collection? 😉

  30. Speaking of screenshot, I took a copy of one of Tony’s late night Posts, that I knew wouldn’t literally see the light of day ! Somehow I don’t think Clark will ever be invited to one of Tony’s dance events despite the constant gatecrashing attempts ! 😀

    “What exactly is the point in running a “Liberal” Website like this…when all but your regulars – who basically are with few exceptions just wannabbe political kids playing in the playground..and there is about 10 or you…maybe 20…pretending to fall out…but really you all love each other..well maybe a bit…

    There is no FUCKING POINT

    You Give The Impression of Being a Bunch of Controlling Fascists – Even Worse Than The Neocons…

    This Clark bloke..I Really Think He Needs To Fuck Off. [squonk: last bit deleted]

    Tony xx”

  31. That Tony…Who is he ? A man, A myth? Maybe I shall never know but I like him. Legendary perhaps. ?

  32. You gota break it down sometime, nothing like standing up after a breakdown. Finding a new moment. As every day should be. It’s not generally “breakdowns” that are bad, it’s maintaining something in yourself way too far that’s the root of what can be harmful about them..In my experience.

  33. Maybe if people can forget the past i’m ok with some comments on things blog. I understand this may seem to normal business a bit of an onslaught lately?

    I don’t actually like that much politics myself. Or I think any group should enjoy what they do whatever. Maybe if something develops and feels ok, but actually I am very tired of all the CM related “ways” and what it’s done to me. Or what i’v allowed myself to do.

    So I don’t know about starting something new like that. Maybe it’s just this moment I feel that, as I feel could leave all online stuff forever right now. But i’ll probably come back in moderation somewhere. Posting just lolcats or something…Photos of my dinner.

  34. Yo Squonk, Must be maddening…waiting on the Summer, and Waiting, it really has been unnaturally Cold all the way through, although i think there might be a change now, Lets hope so.. Best wishes.

    now to some interesting Astro Goings On –

    The first ever live observation of a planet outside of our Solar System as it passes across the face of its home star. Exo-planet TrES-2b, nicknamed Dark Knight, will traverse its star and Slooh will capture the moment using one of the largest infrared telescopes in the world, IAC’s Carlos Sánchez Telescope in the Canary Islands –

  35. Brian: Do you really think it’s been cold? It appeared particularly warm all Winter to me. Same with the Spring for that matter. We do a bit of camping in May and June, and for the last couple of years it was cold and wet. Two years ago it was terrible – exceptionally cold and damp in the south of France.

    This year was a scorcher, by comparison!

    If you really want to test your endurance, next week looks good for some long distance running. Tuesday is due to be the hottest day of the year so far.

  36. I had a friend into astrology or astronomy. Space – Stars? I realize looking at that webpage I don’t understand any of the terminology…

    ‘Exoplanet’? See Pluto ‘occult’ a 12th magnitude star ?

    It sounds impressive. Hope it’s not dangerous. Sounds a bit suspicious anyway. Think someone should keep an eye on that Pluto.

  37. Brian, thanks for that link. Slooh looks like a good project – more than just a website. I should join, but I already spend too much time on-line. What a wonderful thing to be able to see the transit of an exo-planet; something I thought I’d never see.

    Glenn, I think the summer weather has been slow in coming this year; it’s only really been warming up over the last few days. Squonk agrees, I think, and I thought mentioned or posted a link about the Jet Stream remaining south of the British Isles being responsible. There were a few unusually warm days, in April I think, but it got very windy after, and then went back to being chilly and cloudy; even more so in Scotland, I reckon.

    It’s a nice day here today, and Wednesday is forecast to be 28c, which is too warm for me. But at present they’re forecasting clear sky for Tuesday and the Jupiter-Venus conjunction – here’s hoping for a good view.

  38. Oh we did have a nice weekend a fortnight ago. I was at the Othona Community near Bradwell with a group from Mid Essex Quakers. It was an excellent weekend.

  39. Pluto, So they classified it as a dwarf planet? I know there used to be issues about what it was. just looking it up. It has a core I see. mmm, yea dunno about the term. “planetoid is “a perfectly good word”. I can see that, but like taking away a whole ‘planet’ also.

    Eris. I take it all the nice photos of Pluto i’m seeing are mock ups? And Eris even harder to see?

    Ceres. Amazing how small it looks. And doesn’t just wonder off with the creator size.

    Thanks, feel like I rember as a kid, under the stares finding a book on the solar system, wondering why they are so moody and dull with all this .

  40. Agree Clark. And I assume most people feel they are doing what’s right from their perspective, including descent, agreement, support etc.

    I do put a lot of issues down to me, ie that I have had misconceived perceptions of myself and others and yea, it was a bit of an issue. And i’m thankful I could share it (what many online things are about in many ways) with someone who seems alike.

    I imagine we are less alike, or understanding, that’s fine by me.

  41. It’s not even dark yet but I can see Venus and Jupiter, about twice as far apart as the width of a finger held out at arm’s length. I had a look at Venus through Phil’s telescope last night; quite clearly a crescent shape; something I’d never seen before.

  42. Ishmael, we’re only human. We only have about 1.4 kilo of brain with which to make sense of our vast world, the nature of all reality and the collective effects of billions of other people. I suppose it’s surprising we only fuck things up as much as we do. Things could be far worse.

  43. Villager; “Just to make it clear wrt my comment to Frazer, I did not use a single abusive word in that comment”

    Still not worked out yet that going against Craig’s friends & supporters, even useful idiots, is a BIG no-no ? !

  44. Ishmael; “That Tony…Who is he ? A man, A myth? Maybe I shall never know but I like him. Legendary perhaps. ”

    Somebody with a soul, and somebody whose middle of the night, perhaps booze inspired comments, make more sense than the immaculately written garbage of the automatons who mostly post at CM’s.

  45. Glen Hi

    Yes its been very cold in our summer for this year… i was on the Atlantic coast a couple of weeks ago, wearing ALL my winter Gear , and even then one could not hang aroon, that was mostly the wind, but all in all, it’s been very cold, i have Never had my heating on in May, or June before this yearwould love to get back to the Long distance running, and the Five a sides,

    Clark…. Keep an Eye , the planets get Closer,

    P.s i once seen Tears For Fear Live in Glasgow Barrowlands, Great Artits

    Peace oot havin a wee Swally…Clouds, and no noctilucents, Typical

    Gabriel – Lay you’re Hand’s on me – the best , Live surf

    And From Listeningwater –

  46. Wet an Grey in the midlands atm.

    Macky, Must confess I thought Tony as some just nutter at first, so immediately felt kinship. Posting at inordinate times… But I don’t know, there is something wonderfully consistent, regular about him…It’s who I choose to identify with most even if imagined.

    Nice one seeing Tears Brian, never did ): ..Saw lenny kravitz @ the nec brum though. One of the only 2 good gigs i’v been to. Fish being the other. Seen loads outdoor, festivals, seems to suck a lot imo…

  47. Guess that’s the point, they are not inordinate. And you get a sense of the person, just posting as person. Asking no favors, skilfully dissecting the narrative.

    Coincidental or not it’s impressive to observe. Add very high probable levels of alcohol, doubly so.

  48. Nibiru or Planet 7x or whatever, keeps coming up. The god-botherers keep praying for disaster to prove the scriptural record.

    WISE hasn’t seen, but brown dwarfs are hard to spot with a telescope, so we must trust NASA to keep us uninformed, as panic shuts down productive society and THAT would be an apocalypse. Imagine a brown dwarf larger than Jupiter with it’s own planet passing by slowly. If scientists were aware and kept quiet….it’s so against the grain of human nature.

  49. Brian, yes, I saw Venus and Jupiter again tonight; just over finger-width at arm’s length apart this evening. Or my finger fattens.

  50. Ben, you read The Black Cloud by Fred Hoyle? Recommended; short sci-fi novel. Hoyle was the astronomer who coined the term “big bang” – as a term of ridicule – he was a steady-state universe proponent.

    An object enters our solar system, gets spotted by a sky survey in the US, and the US government tries to hush it up. But a UK amateur spots the gravitational perturbations of Jupiter and Saturn and presents his results at the Royal Astronomical Society.

    Anyone worried about a ‘pole shift’ should nail a length of drainpipe to a couple of posts in their garden, lined up with Polaris, which stays roughly where it is while the sky revolves around it – it’s like the drawing pin the rest of the map rotates about. If you look through the pipe one day and Polaris is outside the view, either worry or check if the posts have warped.

  51. Ben, I haven’t given much away about the novel; the above happens in the first twenty-two pages, of just over two hundred.

    Alexis the Russian is my favourite character. And I love this section:

    ‘Ifs and buts are the stuff of politics, Mr Parkinson. As a scientist I am concerned with facts, not with motives, suspicions, and airy-fairy nothingness. The fact is, I must insist, that no one has learned anything of importance from me in this affair. The real gossip is the Prime Minister. I told the Astronomer Royal that that’s the way it would be, but he wouldn’t believe me.’

    ‘You haven’t very much respect for my profession, have you, Professor Kingsley?’

    ‘Since it is you who wish for frankness, I will tell you that I have not. I regard politicians rather as I regard the instruments on the dashboard of my car. They tell me what is going on in the engine of state, but they don’t control it.’

  52. RIP Chris Squire. Death announced on Glastonbury Sunday. Last time I say Yes was at Glastonbury 2003 on the Sunday.

    Chris Squire, co-founder of prog-rock band Yes and renowned bass guitarist, has died aged 67.

    Squire, who formed Yes with singer Jon Anderson in 1968, had been undergoing treatment for acute erythroid leukemia (a rare cancer of the blood and bone marrow) in his hometown of Phoenix, Arizona.

    In a statement released on Sunday, fellow Yes band members described Squire as a phenomenal bassist and the “linchpin” that held the group together.

    “It’s with the heaviest of hearts and unbearable sadness that we must inform you of the passing of our dear friend and Yes co-founder, Chris Squire. Chris peacefully passed away last night in Phoenix, Arizona,” the band said.

  53. They say you should write what you know, so a scientist seems the best prospect for writing SciFi. Black Cloud is supposed to be in reprint this year by Valancourt Press, Clark. I shall add to reading list…thanks.

  54. Ben, The Black Cloud really is science fiction; the main characters are scientists, and the story is about them doing science.

    I read some Lovecraft about three decades ago; I can’t even remember which books.

  55. Fred Hoyle also promoted the panspermia hypothesis for the origin of life being in space. I think he may yet be proven right about that. He also correctly predicted a specific nuclear resonance, having spotted that without it, the probability of carbon synthesis by fusion in stellar cores would be too low for the abundance that we actually find.

  56. Don’t see much re Hoyle and Quantum Theory, but it would seem as an outlier (refused to help with the BOMB) and the Nobel Committee dissing him, it would seem he liked exotic theories.

  57. Alternatively, Fred Hoyle was a member of the Illuminati, who had him publish The Black Cloud in 1957 so that when Nibiru comes barrelling through in, er, it’s a bit late init? But so that when it does, I’d trust the community of lying bastard amateur astronomer sociopaths and not panic and start eating the rich…

    Ask Tony_Opmoc; he’ll tell you.

  58. Are there amateur infrared astronomers out there?

    How close would a Jupiter-size brown dwarf have to approach to be seen by optics?

  59. Well I tried using Phil’s telescope to photograph Venus like I did Jupiter in March but nothing was any good, which does not bode well for photographing the conjunction tomorrow. Damaged a hair-band too.

    Looking through the telescope was excellent. With the 25mm eyepiece both planets almost fitted in the field of view together. Venus was a clear crescent and Jupiter’s moons were visible, even though the sky was still quite light.

  60. Farewell Chris Squire… i remember Being just Blown away the first time i heard ‘ Soon ‘.. so touching a piece of music..Thanks for the Glasto vid Squonk


    i think a brown Dwarf of Jupiter Size would be an Optical View not much farther out than Jupiter… But i’m certain that Brown dwarfs can never be as low in mass / Size, of Jupiter.. they would be very much Larger.

    Nibiru, Clark is correct, it’s well Late… the damn thing must have the Velocity of a snail, But if something else passes just Handy Pandy… and if we go back to Mr Sagan’s fear of Deflection Technology.. Oops

  61. Must be an Amazing Sight Clark…Great stuff, ENVY the clear skies…And the Scope…they say we are in for clear tomorrow, and heat …at effin Last

  62. Clark cheers for Mrs O Connor Vid.. Love that wumin …Long time fan .

    Nothing Compares Vid…. ooch

  63. I was catching up on Sinéad recently, I was a bit stupid back then and didn’t really ‘get’ a lot of it. Never thought it could be as good as then. Such spirit. But now understand and maybe will return that passion. Right now i’m stuck panting white backgrounds…

    Maybe it sounds mean
    But I really don’t think so
    You asked for the truth and I told you

    Through their own words
    They will be exposed
    They’ve got a severe case of
    The emperor’s new clothes

  64. I think this leap second is just a clever ruse to give Greece more time time to sort out the debt problem – a whole extra second is surely generous 🙂

  65. [Squonk: Moved from Meteor Storm post]

    Can anyone explain why Germany has allowed Germanwings co-pilot Andreas Lubitz to be buried in hometown Montabaur while the German government of Angela Merkel has agreed to the building of a gas pipeline underneath the Baltic which will render Eastern Europe powerless to deal with Russia’s Putin for Washington?

  66. Phil’s telescope is trained on the conjunction with the 25mm eyepiece. Venus is a brilliant crescent. Jupiter looks about two thirds the size of Venus. I can see banding on Jupiter and all four Galilean moons, three on the same side as Venus and one far out on the opposite side. It’s magnificent!

    I might get the whole scene in view with the 17mm eyepiece… I suppose I should try a photo but the ones from yesterday were rubbish.

  67. Damn. Distant clouds have obscured the view.

    I got some photo’s. I tried my other camera. I’d tried it before but I’d never been able to see anything on the viewfinder screen. This time I could so I took some pictures, but I hadn’t got set up with the hair bands to hold the camera to the ‘scope so I just hand-held the camera and there’s camera shake. I’ll find the least bad examples and post them anyway.

  68. Like the photos. Just had a look outside and had good naked eye visibility. Also for me some clouds started to intervene before I could go back and get the binoculars.

  69. Jeez. They’re forecasting 30 centigrade here tomorrow. The forecast for Thursday has changed radically every hour, today and yesterday, from heavy rain all day, to thunderstorms, to sunshine and heavy showers, to light rain all day, and now sunshine and light showers. However, the predicted temperature has remained at 24c throughout.

    Maybe there’s industrial action at HAARP.

  70. Squonk, it’s a shame my photos don’t show Venus as a crescent properly. It was about half way between a sliver and a half-moon shape. However, the colour difference between Venus and Jupiter is clearer in the photo’s than by eye.


    Public warning: Windows 10 will share your Wi-Fi password with your friends’ friends

    A Windows 10 feature, Wi-Fi Sense, smells like a significant security risk: it shares access to password-protected Wi-Fi networks with the user’s contacts. So giving a wireless password to one person grants access to everyone who knows them.

    That includes their (nee Hotmail) contacts, Skype contacts and, with an opt-in, their Facebook friends. There is method in the Microsoft madness – it saves having to shout across the office or house “what’s the Wi-Fi password?” – but ease of use has to be tamed with security. If you wander close to a wireless network, and your friend knows the password, and you both have Wi-Fi Sense, you can now log into that network.

  72. “Public warning: Windows 10 will share your Wi-Fi password with your friends’ friends”

    Hmmm. Doesn’t this only matter if systems on the local Wi-Fi network are set so as to allow access (to the file system, for instance) from the local network? Otherwise, all a friend (or a friend’s friend) could do is use your Internet download allowance. Most systems don’t have local file sharing enabled anyway.

    I’ve thought for a while that Wi-Fi encryption serves the ISPs and government surveillance at the expense of the users. If everyone turned their Wi-Fi encryption off, we’d have Wi-Fi access to the Internet almost everywhere populated. Encryption enables individual billing for bandwidth usage, and it enables specific traffic to be traced to individual users.

  73. Now former deputy editor of The News of the World Neil Wallis , who got the position by helping give Captain Simon Hayward an alibi for having created a serious crime in Sweden, especially having assassinated its statsminister Olof Palme, while working for The Sun, has been found not guilty of master-minding its phone hacking system of news-worthy people.

    NOW reporter Sean Hoare had first leaked it to the NYT, claiming that it was rampant, but then Hoare conveniently died, and it became much more restricted.

    Would if Wallis had been convicted if Hoare had lived to testify?

    Just shows what a rampant police state the UK is?

  74. Thanks to Mary, we have Phil’s censored post;( I wonder if the named two pro war mongers comments can also be retrieved ?);

    “I am appalled that some people here are calling for more war. A war to end war of course. Perfect. Cause that works. Iraq and Afghanistan worked out well! Daesh have nothing to do with us. They are simply evil. Nothing to do with us.

    How about NATO withdraws? How about not selling arms to every mad motherfucker around the globe. How about not drawing lines that serve resource grabs at the expense of people. How about not fueling divisions with a little murder to control both sides? How about not having alliances with the financiers of Daesh. How about not training them. How about asking NATO members to stop attacking forces fighting these clerical fascists? How about arming the Kurds? How about not bombing everyone? How about not installing tyrants? How about not killing democrats? How about not creating global murder and mayhem for profit? Jesus. Have all these ideas been tried and failed. Well that’s evil for ya. Damned unreasonable, this pure evil.

    Why troops on the ground now? Because of dead English holiday makers? Because a relative of someone you know was shot? It’s personal now!

    People are killed in numbers that dwarf this horror day in day out. What about the dead of Kobane. Same day. Way, way more dead. More dead children. especially. I thought you lot didn’t like dead children. Yet the outrage here is saved for our few dead and injured. Just like the Daily Mail. No different than the BBC. You people think you are so clever cause you understand that the media lies. Yet you are so stupid you can only react to an agenda set by the media you bemoan. And now some of you are calling for more NATO war. You excel yourself.

    You volunteering to fight then Clark and Daniel? Or just hoping to send someone elses son to kill the sons of someone you don’t know. You brave old men.

    Troops on the ground my arse. You fucking NATO war machine cocksucking wankers. Go vote SNP.”

  75. I won’t defend myself here because Squonk, this blog’s owner, has asked that we refrain from animosity on this blog.

  76. Clark; You and phil seem to have transcended your differences by star-gazing.

    Finding common ground covers a multitude of sins.

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