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#NUSWomen15: jazz hands are the new clapping and other beyond parody motions

nus women

 

#NUSWomen15: Putting Policy into Action. So runs the slogan for the National Union of Students get together:

This year, on March 24 until the 26, hundreds of women will be descending upon Solihull for the best three days of the year: Women’s Conference.

Alongside debates on sex work (it should decriminalised) and money, motions to be debated include:

Motion 101: Putting pronouns on the cards
Submitted by: NUS LGBT Committee
Conference Believes:
1. Pronouns are used in the English language to replace nouns in order to make conversation easier. An example of the use of a pronoun is when referring to somebody instead of using their name.
2. The current delegate name badges at all NUS conferences and events simply state the delegate’s name, their constituent membership and if they attend an HE or an FE institution.
3. Delegates who use gender neutral pronouns currently have to write this on their badges themselves to ensure other delegates use their correct preferred pronouns.

Conference Further Believes:
1. Delegates currently having to manually write their pronouns on their badges may make them feel uncomfortable, othered, or outed as trans* (despite the safe space policy).
2. NUS Women’s Campaign is open to all who self-define as women, including (if they wish) those with complex gender identities which include ‘woman’, and those who experience oppression as women. The campaign affirms that self-definition of gender identity and pronouns are at the sole discretion of the individual in question.
3. Delegates to NUS Women’s conference may use pronouns that are not she/her, and encouraging all delegates to specify their pronouns will foster a culture of not assuming pronouns based on gender presentation and help ensure that everyone’s preferred gender pronouns are upheld.
4. All delegates specifying their pronouns and asking each other for pronouns may help to ensure that delegates are not misgendered, as this can make delegates feel unsafe or trigger gender dysphoria.
Conference Resolves:
1. To ask all delegates attending NUS conferences and events for their pronouns at the point of registration (this would be a blank box which text could be typed into).
2. To print pronouns on all delegate’s badges.
3. To continue to reiterate when establishing the safe space policy that all delegates should respect and uphold each other’s pronouns.

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Posted: 24th, March 2015 | In: Key Posts, News | Comment (1) | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


The Ashya King ‘miracle’ hits the Coalition with a £250m NHS proton therapy lie

proton therapy nhs

 

When Brett and Naghmeh King told the story of their son Ashya King’s treatment to the Sun, the scoop was front-page news. Readers wanted to know what happened next to the desperatly ill child – Ashya is age 5 –  who went on the run from the NHS in search of alternative proton beam therapy treatment.

The front page declares that the Kings were “hunted like criminals”. They were. Hampshire Police obtained a European arrest warrant for the parents on the issue of ‘neglect’. The papers told readers the boy had “hours to live“. The Mirror said it was “24 hours”. The Sun said it was “weeks“.

The message was that the parents were placing their child in mortal danger.

One journalist billed them as weirdos who belonged to “a millennial religious cult“.

The Daily Mirror reported:

Missing Ashya King has been spotted with his parents at a Spanish holiday resort, an expat said, as police battled to find the terminally ill boy.

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Posted: 24th, March 2015 | In: Key Posts, News | Comment (1) | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Transfer balls: Chelsea and Liverpool fight to spend a fortune of Manchester United’s Radamel Falcao

Talking Balls wonders how much Manchester United’s Radamel Falcao is worth? The Colombian earns £265,000-a-week at Manchester United. Given that Harry Kane is on around £35,000 a week at Spurs, it’s looks like failing Falcao is the world’s most-overpaid footballer.

Barring a massive change in form and United manager Louis Van Gaal losing his mind, it’s pretty unlikely United will stump up the £43million to make Falcao’s loan deal permanent. So. If not United for Falcao, then what?

Today the Daily Mail says Falcao will be “offered” to Liverpool. That conversation should go a little like this:

Falcao agent: “Dear, Liverpool would you like to blow a massive chaunk of your transfer budget on Falcao and £1m a month in wages?”

Liverpool: “No.”

The Daily Mirror adds: “Radamel Falcao ‘wants to leave Man United in the summer – even if offered a permanent deal'”

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Posted: 24th, March 2015 | In: News | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Kenya’s ‘Chinese Restaurant’ bans entry to black Africans after 5pm

Chinese restaurant Kenya
Diners at the ‘Chinese Restaurant’, at the junction of Galana and Lenana roads in Kilimani, Nairobi, a politely requested not to be black after sunset.

No black Africans are allowed to enter after 5pm.

The only Africans allowed into the compopund are those driving Chinese, European or Indian patrons. Although restuarant manager Ms Esther Zhao does allow Nairobi Senator Mike Sonko and former Cabinet Minister Raphael Tuju inside to eat. They are “loyal” African patrons who have spent Sh20,000 at the restaurant over set time.

Says Zhao:

“We don’t admit Africans that we don’t know because you never know who is Al-Shabaab and who isn’t. It is not like it is written on somebody’s face that they are a thug armed with a gun.”

Maybe a no guns policy should have been first tried?

 

Posted: 24th, March 2015 | In: News | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


University Safe Zones are places where the normal and boring can say ‘It’s all about me’

safe space

 

Safe spaces: Writing in the New York Times Judith Schulevitz takes up the story of university safe spaces, those zones of intolerance where diverse views of a diverse society are banned, where everything is ‘normal’.

She begins by looking at the work of Katherine Byron, a member of Brown University’s Sexual Assault Task Force. In her safe zone rape will be a taboo. No, not illegal. Rape is an abhorrent crime. This is a ban on anything that could upset rape victims.

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Posted: 23rd, March 2015 | In: Key Posts, News | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Nazi bunker found in Argentina: but why bother keeping it a secret?

1961:  Austrian Nazi war criminal Karl Adolf Eichmann (1906 - 1962) on trial in Jerusalem.  (Photo by Central Press/Getty Images)

1961: Austrian Nazi war criminal Karl Adolf Eichmann (1906 – 1962) on trial in Jerusalem. (Photo by Central Press/Getty Images)

 

Have they found a secret Nazi hideout in Argentina? Researchers at the University of Buenos Aires have found old German coins dated between 1938 and 1941 and bits of ‘Made In Germany’ china in buildings deep in a remote part of the jungle. Were these buildings in Teyu Cuare park in northern Argentina near Paraguay where Adolf Eichmann and his fellow Nazis hid out?

Eichmann was captured in Buenos Aires in 1960.

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Posted: 23rd, March 2015 | In: News | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Media bias: anti-Semitic attack on London synangogue was just a ‘break-in’

 

So. What do we know about the attack on a synagogue in London’s Stamford Hill, a building and a place with notable Jewish populations?

The BBC says police have made six arrests following the attack.  The BBC says the attack is “what police have described as an ‘anti-Semitic’ incident.”

We don’t get to know what the BBC describes it as – maybe it was ‘an interrupted stroll in the world’s most vibrant city’, ‘football-related violence’ or ‘an incident linked to Israel’s actions in the Middle East’?

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Posted: 22nd, March 2015 | In: News | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Indian villagers stage mass pooing against amendments to land acquisition bill

Inda poo protest

We shall be moved

 

Can you poo on demand? They can in Jharkhand, eastern India, where around 60 locals protesting the Narendra Modi government’s land reforms squatted and defecated on demand in front of the Barwadih office block.

They would “raise a stink about the bill.”
As they grunt in Jharkhland: ‘one out, all out…’

Posted: 22nd, March 2015 | In: News, Strange But True | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


The greatest news pun ever: Jilted Jun and one Rong don’t make it right

Jun Wu Rong

 

To China, for what must be the greatest news pun of the century.

The story involves Wu Hsia, 21, his ex-girlfriend Jun Tang, 20, and his new lover Rong Tsao, 22.

Jilted Jun said that Rong was a moron. Wu should be with her. Jilted Jun went on and on and on. She wanted to woo Wu.

Wu has doubts. So. He thought it a good idea to meet both the women. The rendevous would take place in a park by a river.

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Posted: 20th, March 2015 | In: Key Posts, News | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Madeleine McCann: Innocent Brenda Leyland was hounded to death by the Trollhunters

Brenda Leyland

 

When Brenda Leyland was doorstepped by Sky News reporter Martin Brunt, she became the “McCann Troll”,  the woman who under the name ‘sweepyface’ had bombarded Twitter with comments about the parents of missing Madeleine McCann.

No longer a real human being, Leyland was monstered by the media until she achieved the status of public enemy, awful enough to be branded a “hate-fuelled” (Times) “twisted, fecked-up bitch” (Daily Mirror). She was the eptiome of “sheer evil“.

We were left to wonder: who was hounding who?

Two days after being ‘exposed’ on the telly for our entertainment, Brenda Leyland was dead. The verdict: suicide.

At the coroner’s inquest at Leicester Town Hall, Martin Brunt says (via the Telegraph):

“At the end of the conversation she said it was a pleasure to meet you. I said I hoped I hadn’t ruined her day which I considered very much a throwaway remark. I was out of the country when I was told that Brenda Leyland had been found dead. I was devastated and I still am and the enormity of what’s happened will always be with me.”

Martin Brunt is a skilled reporter. It would be churlish not to take his upset as anything other than genuine. But his role as trollhunter-in-chief is regrettable. Swept along by a mob-fed eagerness to ‘unmask’ trolls and expose anyone saying nasty things to the glare of publicity and most excitedly court action, Brunt got his popular story.

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Posted: 20th, March 2015 | In: Madeleine McCann, News | Comments (7) | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


LSE Occupiers minority demand end to occupation and a campus according to Kenny Everett

Occupy LSETo the London School of Economics, where students love the place so much they are occupying it. Occupation is good, say the LSE students shut inside the Vera Anstey Suite meeting room, now dubbed the ‘Free University of London’.

(You see Occupiers do guarantee freedom. That point to you members of the monocular Boycott Israel society).

The occupiers demand “a university run by students, lecturers and workers”. They want tuition fees scrapped. They want an end to zero-hours contracts.

And:

They call for “genuine” university democracy—that is, a directly elected student-staff council to make university decisions. Furthermore they demand divestment from destructive companies, including the fossil fuel industry, and those who profit from the Israeli occupation of Palestine.

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Posted: 20th, March 2015 | In: News | Comment (1) | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Cyril Smith: No guarantee police won’t be prosecuted for blowing the whistle

Cyril Smith in 1981 peadophile rochdale liberal

Cyril Smith in 1981

 

Westminster paedophiles: a look at reporting on the story that children were abused and killed by above-the-law VIPs in the 1970s and 1980s.

Only the Daily Mail leads with the story on its front page. Readers hear news of “Another Cyril Smith Cover-Up”.

Smith is the former Labour and Liberal politican who died a knight of the realm but is now billed as a serial child abuser. Recent news is that he was twice arrested for alleged crimes against boys. He escaped prosecution because, as one retired copper says, police buried the files.

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Posted: 20th, March 2015 | In: News, Politicians | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Dad straps child to motorbike and makes her go to school (photos)

dad india bike school arrested child

 

To India, where 40-year-old Bhagwat Singh has been spotted taking his daughter to school in Uttar Pradesh, India.

His youngest daughter wants to say at home. She has an exam and wants to skip school.  Having tried and failed to coax her to class with offers of sweets and gifts, Singh opts for force: he ties her to the back of his motorbike with ropes and goes on the school run.

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Posted: 19th, March 2015 | In: News, Strange But True | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Madeleine McCann: the Police Federation and spelling it out

Madeleine McCann: a look at reporting on the missing child.

The Daily Star, Page 25: “McCanns: Don’t Give Up Hint For Maddie”

Jerry Lawton says the parents of Madeleine McCann – the missing child who became the media’s ‘Our Maddie – are “incredibly grateful to every officer woeking to find Madeleine”.

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Posted: 19th, March 2015 | In: Madeleine McCann, News | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Darth Vader robs a bank: police say his outfit is ‘rare’ (video)

Disguise of the day: the man dressed as Darth Vader who robbed bank in Pineville, North Carolina.

Unless it was Darth Vader and what with the high price of electrity he’s swapped his light sabre for a gun?

WCNC say they will catch the thief “because most adults don’t have that kind of Star Wars gear”.

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Posted: 19th, March 2015 | In: News, Strange But True | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Ashers To Ashers: Northern Ireland cakes shop makes muppets for Christians

 

gay cake

 

Ashers Baking Company didn’t want to bake a cake decorated with slogans supporting gay marriage. The Northern Ireland bakery doesn’t want to make a statement about gay marriage, which remains illegal in the country.  It also goes againt their religious convictions as Christians. So. Thanks for your enquiry but no thanks.

The shop named after one of the 12 tribes of Israel thanks you for your interest.

That would be the end of it. But Ashers, based in Newtownabbey, upset / annoyed / triggered LGBT activist Gareth Lee. He wanted a cake with Sesame Street characters Bert and Ernie, the slogan “support gay marriage” and the logo of campaigning group QueerSpace. And he complained that he had “suffered unlawful religious, political and sexual orientation discrimination”.

But was he really treated less favourably by Ashers than they would treat heterosexuals asking for the same cake? Was he refused because he was gay? No. He wasn’t. The shop will serve gays.

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Posted: 19th, March 2015 | In: News | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Westminster paedophiles: how police Sergeant Don Mackintosh and the church saved Cyril Smith in Stockport

Cyril Smith in 1981 peadophile rochdale liberal

Cyril Smith in 1981

 

Westminster paedophiles: a look at the story of VIP crimes against children during the 1970s and 1980s. The tabloid Press have been hot on the news of corruption in high places. Let’s look at today’s coverage:

Number of front pages covering the story: nil.

The Sun page 11: Rod Liddle says the elite are “shiedling political paedos”.

Liddle says news that gross former Labour and Liberal politican Cyril Smith was arrested for alleged child abuse and his files wiped from history explains why no politican has been treated to the same high-profile raids as celebrities – think of innocent Jim Davidson being arrested at Heathtrow Airport as her flew IN to the country – and police raiding Sunderland FC’s Adam Johnson’s home.

We’d add that no police have been so brutally dealt with, either.

Liddle adds that because the police allegedly abused the Official Secrets Act to busty Smith’s depravity, the “morbidly obese self-publicist” was free to attacked boys in his Rochdale constituency and beyond.

Who now trusts the police?

And what of now?

The Daily Mail has news on page 22:

“Scores of paedophiles, rapists and even killers are being granted bail after being found guiulty.”

Suppose you could call that progress. Unlike Sir Jimmy Savile and Sir Cyril Smith at least they were tried before they dropped dead.

Daily Mirror page 26: “No one ever tipped me off about Savile, says Rantzen”

Childline founder Dame Esther Rantzen has denied being told Jimmy Savile was a paedophile decades before he was unmasked.

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Posted: 19th, March 2015 | In: News | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Pimp My Steroptype: woman smokes marijuana with Ayatollah Khomeini in Iran

Pimp my stereotype: an occasional look at subverting racial and cultural stereotypes.

 

khomeni joint marijuana iran

 

 

capriciousyouth points us toward these photos of a young Iranian rolling a marijuana joint on a 5000 Toman banknote featuring Ayatollah Khomeini, who in 1979 made Iran the world’s first Islamic republic.

 

khomeni joint marijuana iran

 

 

Spotter: Nicola Zolin

Posted: 18th, March 2015 | In: marijuana, News | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


The uplifting story of an armless man and blind friend who planted 10,000 trees in China

Samuel Beckett, eat your heart out. Two men in a barren landscape have not sat around bickering as they wait for nothing; they have planted 10,000 trees over ten years. Jia Haixia is blind. Jia Wenqi is a double amputee. And rather than sitting around doing nothing they have set about enlivening the barren landscape around Yeli Village in northeastern China.

 

blind man trees 6

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Posted: 18th, March 2015 | In: News, Strange But True | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Westminster paedophiles: Cyril Smith, Sidney Cooke and official secrets in Coronation Buildings, Lambeth

November 1972, Rochdale, Cyril Smith,  Liberal Democrat politician,having just been elected as a Liberal MP, sits on the Liberal bus next to party leader Jeremy Thorpe

November 1972, Rochdale, Cyril Smith, Liberal Democrat politician,having just been elected as a Liberal MP, sits on the Liberal bus next to party leader Jeremy Thorpe

 

Westmingter paedophiles: a daily look at allegations of a VIP sex ring cover-up.

Dead Liberal MP Cyril Smith did not only paddle boy’s bottoms. In the 1980s, he was arrested in London as part of an investigation into alleged sex parties with teenage males. It is further alleged the arrest was kept secret by police, who abused the Official Secrets Act to protect the alleged pervert.

The story was broken by BBC’s Newsnight. That’s the same TV show that spiked the story that Jimmy Savile – a knight of realm, like Smith – was a paedophile on BBC time.

 

 

Retired Lancashire detective Jack Tasker told Sky News:

“Other people were rather worried that if Cyril Smith went before a court, he would open his mouth.”

Don Hale was working for the Bury Messenger at the time. In 2014, he said Barbara Castle, the veteran Labour politician for Blackburn, Lancashire, handed him a dossier of VIP paedophiles. She has since died.

 

Former Liberal leader Lord Steel insists that “no complaint of any conduct against Cyril Smith MP was ever made to me“.

Former Liberal leader Lord Steel insists that “no complaint of any conduct against Cyril Smith MP was ever made to me“.

 

Hale told BBC Radio 5 live’s Nicky Campbell:

“In 1984, I started making enquiries to get a response from various MPs I’d spoken to a number of Liberal MPs named in the document. Cyril Smith came into to see me. He came storming in, said it was all rubbish, demanded that I hand everything over to him straight away and he was really aggressive. I mean he was quite a big guy anyway. He was about six foot tall and quite heavy and he was really poking his fingers at me, threatening, spitting at me, all sorts of things. He was a real horror. In the end I refused to give it. He walked out of the office, stormed out the office. And the very next day Special Branch arrived with three plain clothes officers and about a dozen police, you know, raided the place, pushed me against the wall, were very, very aggressive again, threatened to arrest me on the spot for perverting the course of justice if I didn’t hand over the documents to them. I agreed obviously to do that, showed them what the documents were and they took them and then disappeared.”

Are they still around?

Will more police talk?

… the threat of prosecution under the Official Secrets Act would have made the officers concerned fear for their careers.

And now..?

In 2010GMP Assistant Chief Constable Steve Heywood said:

“This has been a very complex inquiry and I hope people understand why it has taken some time before we were in a position to comment publicly.

“It was very important that both ourselves and Lancashire Police examined all our records very carefully so we could be certain what involvement we had in investigating allegations of sexual and physical abuse made against such a high-profile figure as Smith.

“We are now in a position to say that on three separate occasions, files were passed to first the DPP and then the CPS containing details of abuse committed by Smith, but on each occasion no prosecution was pursued.

“Having now reviewed those decisions, we believe that if the same evidence was presented to the CPS today there would have been a very realistic prospect that Smith would have been charged with a number of indecent assaults, and that the case would have been brought to trial.

“Clearly that is a bold statement to make but it is absolutely important for those victims who were abused by Smith that we publicly acknowledge the suffering they endured.

“Although, Smith cannot be charged or convicted posthumously, from the overwhelming evidence we have it is right and proper we should publicly recognise that young boys were sexually and physically abused and we will offer them as much support as they need should they wish to speak to us.”

And a link to Operation Orchid, more of which can be read here. It is tale of murderous paedophile Sidney Cooke:

A former detective who worked on the original investigation into Cooke told the Sunday Mirror that the minister was among those alleged to have been ­photographed in a 1986 police surveillance on premises where boys had been dropped off. Others allegedly included Jimmy Savile, MP Cyril Smith and top judges – though none of them were ever arrested.

Why not?

Posted: 18th, March 2015 | In: News, Politicians | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Daily Mail invites readers to perv at ‘underge’ American Apparel model in her underwear

Irony overload in the Daily Mail, which brings news that an advert by fashion company American Apparel has had “ANOTHER advert banned, this time for ‘too sexy’ photos of underage-looking model in thong bodysuit”.

The Daily Mail hates looking at sexualised underage girls and ogling them. You can see how much it hates leering at underage girls here, herehere, herehere and here.

So, how does it choose to illustrate this apparent horror? Why, by publishing a photo of the American Apparel advert and zooming on the model’s primary sexual characteristics:

 

American apparel banned advert daily mail

 

American apparel banned advert daily mail

 

 

Posted: 18th, March 2015 | In: Fashion, News | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


The monstering of David Nicholson: spanking the Basingstoke headmaster

sam fox the sun

Former Sun stalwart Sam Fox in class

 

Day 2 of the Sun’s monstering of David Nicholson, the Basingstoke school headmaster accused of using school computers to contact prostitutes. Having read that Mr Nicholson never did have sex or spank either of the women he allegedly contacted on school time, we learn on page 12:

“Hookers head shocks mums”

Are those the mums into 50 Shades of spanking or all mums? Afte rall, it was the Sun that reported: “SEX-MAD Brits can’t wait to watch Fifty Shades Of Grey – so they can copy the kinky moves back in their own bedrooms.”

Jonathan Reilly writes, “PARENTS reacted with shock after a head was suspended for sending X-rated messages to two escorts on his school email.”

Shock that such a small story – a thought offence – could ruin a man’s career?

They spoke of their horror yesterday after The Sun revealed David Nicholson arranged a schoolgirl-themed threesome.

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Posted: 18th, March 2015 | In: News | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Madeleine McCann: British police baffled why they are looking for her

Maddie Mccann huntMadeleine McCann peers out from the front-page of the Daily Star. The familiar picture of the holidaymaker who became ‘Our Maddie illustrates the still more familiar story that there is no news.

The headline (“MADDIE – CALL OFF HUNT, WE NEED COPS IN UK”) looks at how the £10m spent in finding out what happened to the child occupies 31 Met police detectives. The Star says these resources are “ring-fenced”, preventing the Maddie cops from working on other cases, such as the “14 unconnected killings” across London.

Readers are told that officers are “baffled” why so many police are on one case that has so far turend up not a single clue, no evidence and zero proof as to what happned to the child.

Metropolitan Police Federation chairman John Tully says:

“It is time to refocus…we no longer have the resources to  conduct special inquiries all over the world which have nothing to do with London… But we have £600m of cuts… It is surprising to see an inquiry like the McCann investigation ring-fenced… there is resentment of significant resources  diverted to a case that has no apparent connection with London.”

His grumble is more to do with falling police investment than the  McCann case. But £10m is a fortune for a case that has progressed not one inch.

But it won’t stop. Not now…

 

Posted: 18th, March 2015 | In: Madeleine McCann, News | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


Was Basingstoke school headmaster in kinky uniform sex caper driven to it by the Sun?

The Sun school uniform hooker

 

In “Head hires hooker to dress as schoolgirl – EXCLUSIVE: Top Sir probed over sordid texts”, the Sun zooms in on “married dad” David Nicholson, 48. The front-page story goes that Nicholson, a headteacher at Costello School in Basingstoke, Hampshire, allegedly used his work computer to send “one hooker X-rated messages”.

Readers get to know that one woman is 34DD. And they get to read the alleged exchange:

She: “I like dressing up like a schoolgirl and being spanked.”
He: “I love this and would be keen. I will stay in a hotel. Looking forward to putting you over my knee.”

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Posted: 17th, March 2015 | In: News | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0


IVF: An Elton John study in conformism that goes against human nature

 Louise BROWN, born at Oldham Hospital near Manchester, Great Britain, is the result of the IN VITRO fertilization of her mother. The biologist Robert Edwards holds the baby beside the midwife and the surgeon Patrick STEPTOE, on July 25, 1978. (Photo by Keystone-France/Gamma-Keystone via Getty Images)

Louise BROWN, born at Oldham Hospital near Manchester, Great Britain, is the result of the IN VITRO fertilization of her mother. The biologist Robert Edwards holds the baby beside the midwife and the surgeon Patrick STEPTOE, on July 25, 1978. (Photo by Keystone-France/Gamma-Keystone via Getty Images)

 

How does an orthodoxy take hold? When designers Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana shared their views on love, sex, romance, gay marriage, children, IVF babies and children of same-sex couples the media and celebrity voices united in condeming them, siding with Elton John, who expressed his displeasure with a shrill call to boycott the brand.

The Daily Mirror has carried this news on its front page:

“Elton – I will never wear Dolce & Gabbana again after they dared call my kids synthetic”

Elton, who with his husband David Furnish is father to IVF-conceived sons Elijah and Zach, appeared over two more pages. It was “Elton’s fury” at an “astonishing attack”.

Elton said: “How dare you refer to my beautiful children as synthetic?”

But they were synthesized? This is how the BBC explains IVF to GCSE students:

If a couple are having difficulty conceiving a child because the quantity or quality of the man’s sperm is poor then IVF can be used. This is where the egg is fertilised outside the woman’s body and then implanted back into her uterus. As FSH can also be used to encourage the production of several mature eggs at once, it is used as part of IVF to increase the number of eggs available for fertilisation.

Some people worry about the ethical implications of IVF. They are concerned that couples may want ‘designer babies’ with ‘desirable’ qualities, so may only want certain fertilised eggs. For example, they may want a girl if they have lots of boys in the family, or they may wish to avoid producing a baby with an inherited defect.

Elton goes on:

And shame on you for wagging your judgemental fingers at IVF… a miracle that has allowed legions of loving people both stright and gay, to fulfil their dream of having children. Your archaic thinking is out of step with the times, just like your fashions. I shall never wear Dolce & Gabbana ever again.  #BoycottDolceGabbana.

At which point anyone not laughing or thinking Chris Morris was writing the news should dash out and buy armfuls of D&G schmutters. Do they do a kids’ range? If they do, buy that, too. Elton John wants people who are judgemental banned. And – irony of irony – many voices on Twitter, that paragon of intolerance and incoherence, agree.

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Posted: 17th, March 2015 | In: Celebrities, Key Posts, News | Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed:RSS 2.0