We don’t just report off-beat news, breaking news and digest the best and worst of the news media analysis and commentary. We give an original take on what happened and why. We add lols, satire, news photos and original content.
WHAT is it about gamblers that people who don’t gamble are so suspicious of?
Over the newswires, the Poker Anorak gets this message: “Deadbeat parents, listen up: Win big at the casino tables in West Virginia or Colorado, and your kids might win, too.”
Why should deadbeat mums and dads be at the casino, rather than, say, at the off license, supermarket or circling life’s plughole while sat on the sofa watching Jeremy Kyle?
The states plan to “garnish” the winnings of casino gamblers who owe child support. (Did they say “garnish?)
NEATORAMA takes a look at the Klu Klax Kland and who to get their look:
58-year-old Miss Ruth is tailor to one of the world’s most hateful (and hated) group, the Ku Klux Klan:
Coming from five generations of Ku Klux Klan members, 58-year-old “Ms. Ruth” sews hoods and robes for Klan members seven days a week, blessing each one when it’s done. A red satin outfit for an Exalted Cyclops, the head of a local chapter, costs about $140.
I didn’t realize there are so many steps in making a KKK robe! I thought it was simply:
1. Take bedsheet
2. Cut eyeholes
SAMIZDATA sees an attack on free speech in the Guardian:
Is the Guardian becoming increasingly illiberal? It may have a section of its website called “Comment is Free”, yet it is now attacking free speech when it disagrees with the opinions expressed.
Once a supporter of liberal values, the Guardian was the sort of paper that would have quoted Voltaire’s “I may disagree with what you have to say, but I shall defend, to the death, your right to say it.” But just as it has dropped support for liberal ideas on economics (it was once a free trade paper), it now appears to be dropping liberal ideas about freedom of expression.
In that vein, it is getting itself worked up because one of its rivals, the Telegraph, runs a blogging platform, like Blogger or Typepad, where members of the public can start their own blogs. That blogging platform has been one of the reasons why the Telegraph, according to moaning articles in the Guardian, has recently overtaken the Guardian in online readers.
Among the 20,000 people who have signed up for a ‘MyTelegraph’ blog, one is a member of the anti-immigration British National Party. The Guardian thinks the Telegraph should ban him, but the Telegraph says that it believes in free speech – even when the views are wrong – and rightly so.
The Guardian’s lack of faith in free speech is not just restricted to BNP-type comments. It whines that: “My Telegraph is also inhabited by some very unsavoury characters, including a minority of active members of the far right, anti-abortionists, europhobes and members of an anti-feminist ‘men’s movement’.”
Anti-abortionists! Europhobes! Opponents of excessive feminism! I wonder if the Guardian would prefer a return to the old days before the decentralisation of publishing in which only the elite, who knew best, were allowed a voice.
The newspapers fighting online…
The Politico says McClellan charges that Bush relied on “propaganda” to sell the war. As a revelation that’s right up there with news that nine out of then US porn stars sleep on their backs and the Pope has three children living in a beer cellar in Salzburg (everyone knows that, right?).
The book is making big news on the web and in the US media.
The book and its treatment reminds us how mind-numbingly dull politics can be, and how the leaders are just the ones who can feign interest the longest.
Picture: Why the US invaded Iraq – because Afghanistan is so boring and it makes for good telly…
WOMEN’S lib – man’s lib:
Jamie Nared, a 12-year-old girl who is six feet tall and an extremely talented basketball player, has been playing on a mixed-sex team since the second grade—but has suddenly been banned from playing with boys after parents complained. Her coach, Michael Abraham, and her parents (and, frankly, video of her game) suggest that the complaints arose because Jamie is so good and makes the boys on opposing teams look bad.
Basket ball – equla opportunities netball…
TABLOID Baby sees the cull of fast food moguls:
Tell us we’re “conspiracy nuts” now. After a strange “coincidental” trio of fast food chain founder’s deaths in the first three months of 2008, we began to keep close tabs on the mortality rate in the controversial industry, only to be shocked by the sudden passings of one of its legends and another pioneer.
That would be five deaths in the first five calendar months of 2008:
Carl Carcher, founder of Carl’s Jr. (January 11);
Lovie Yancie, founder of Fatburger (January 23);
Al Copeland, founder of Popeye’s Famous Fried Chicken (March 23);
Herb Peterson, inventor of the Egg McMuffin (March 25);
Irvine “Irv” Robbins, co-founder of Baskin-Robbins (May 5).
Today, we add another to the list.
J.R. Simplot, the billionaire king of the frozen French fried potato, supplier of fries to McDonald’s and other fast food chains– the man whose product literally greased the skids for the rise of the fast food industry– died on Sunday, May 25th.
The LA Times notes:
CAT Ladies – what’s that smell..?
THE BNP has gained ground in Stoke:
“The men and women of the BNP look like your neighbours,” says Michael Tappin, the former Labour group leader and ex-Stoke MEP who lost his council seat on May 1. “They are not the mythical 25st men with body-piercings and tattoos as portrayed by antifascist demonstrators. They are respectable. It’s impossible to demonise them. They wear suits, they look tidy.” As Tappin says, they pick up old ladies when they fall over in the street, shop for the elderly and cut people’s lawns. “It’s like that saying about Mussolini – ‘at least he made the trains run on time.’ Here, it’s ‘at least they get your grass cut.'”
Stoke in the Premier League – any black players?
HILLARY Clinton: “I’m The Better Candidate ‘Based On Every Analysis, Every Poll”
Candidate to beat Obama. Well, no…
GOLD diggers meet Australian miners:
Meet a Mining Man, is to bring the two lovelorn groups together. It is targeted at fly-in, fly-out workers, who spend weeks at a time in dusty mining camps hundreds of miles from the nearest pub, let alone nightclub, with a severe dearth of female company.
Women wanted to live in middle of nowhere with dirty man – apply within…
I’M a big fish on the internet , dontchaknow…
SKY News reports that plans for a reconstruction of the night Madeleine McCann disappeared has been called off.
It sems that several members of the Tapas Seven/Nine were not able to attend.
Kate and Gerry McCann had already decided not to return to Portugal for event…
BRANDING people – the Millennials:
NEVER cross a frog:
A sculpture of a crucified frog holding a mug of beer on display at a Bolzano museum has sparked outrage in Italy.
ANSA reports that local clerics and politicians want the work removed.
The one metre high work by late German artist Martin Kippenberger belongs to his Fred the Frog series and depicts a warty, pop-eyed amphibian nailed to a cross with a frothing mug of beer in one hand.
Curators at Bolzano museum of modern art Museion said that Kippenberger’s work was a self portrait of the artist ”in a state of profound crisis”, but their explanation has been given short shrift by local bishop Wilhelm Egger.
…Obama also spoke about his uncle, who was part of the American brigade that helped to liberate Auschwitz…
Says GP: This uncle must have truly been crazy and not just an America-hater like Wright… Since Auschwitz was freed by the Russians and not the Americans.
THE Iraq War costs:
For the price of the Iraq war, you could instead have distributed suit cases full of 1.5 million dollars to each family living in Iraq at the time the war began.
How many hearts and minds would that win over? Isn’t that what it’s all about?
FROM our African despot correspondent:
“The Ethiopian Supreme Court has sentenced the country’s former dictator Mengistu Haile Mariam to death…The former leader is, however, unlikely to face execution as he has lived in exile in Zimbabwe since he was ousted from power in 1991. Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe’s government is not expected to extradite him“. Source
A brief anecdote to give the man’s measure: “He shouted “Death to counterrevolutionaries! Death to the EPRP!” and then produced two bottles of what appeared to be blood and smashed them to the ground to show what the revolution would do to its enemies“. Source
The Express sees “latest figures” that show how nine in ten jobs created under Labour have been taken by foreign workers.
Gordon Brown (Scot), Alistair Darling (Scot), Jacqui Smith (Tennessee – Fried Chicken)), Hazel Blear (La-La Land) and so on.
Blessedly, Express owner Richard Desmond is doing it big to keep Britain standing proud by employing exclusively British staff for his Television X – “The home of British Porn packed with all the biggest UK porn stars in the best shows on TV, online and on your mobile”.
Reilly, we learn has the mental age of ten, so qualifying him in theory for the Giraffe restaurant happy meal and balloon combo.
His mental capacity may also qualify him to be treated as a minor by the police…
AGW writes in the forums:
The USA prison population, that is guards and prisoners, have a neat expression for convicted murderers…Dead Man Walking.
It is one of the rare and beautifully-coined phrases which sometimes grace the English language, and I use that term in the broadest sense in the USA’s case. It sums up the dreadfully short prognosis and inexorableness of a system which IS going to carry out another killing…this time judicial murder… to punish the guilty and salve (allegedly) the anguish and pain of the victim’s bereaved friends and family.
It must be like that at number 10 Downing Street this morning. There sits the UK Prime Minister brooding as his health and mental vitality is drained away. The once coy cameramen are showing the strain Gordon Brown is feeling by openly photographing and subtlety screening the Premier’s finger nails cut and bitten to the quick. I am not decrying the nail chewing habit but it is a highly visible indicator of stress.
Premier Gordon Brown’s fingernails as seen by The Telegraph six months ago…they are much worse now
The disastrous showing for his Labour Party in the English and Welsh local council elections and then the Crewe and Nantwich by-election fiasco where a massive rout in a once cast-iron Labour stronghold showed just how far the Labour star has sunk in the heavenly plane.
The UK Premier looks to be a man in severe health decline; the job has aged and depleted the man’s undoubtedly huge mental and physical reserves and the wolves in his own pack are turning on him. Already the denials of plots to oust him are starting. Even worse there is a “We’re backing Gordon” campaign under way. A sure sign the end draws nigh.
Anorak warned over and over again that Brown’s continued backing of lieutenants such as the Scotland Labour disaster, wide mouthed frog, Wendy Alexander, Peter Hain, Harriet Harman and others were not good ideas. Brown seems have adopted the Alexander techniques of saying:”It wasnae me. It were a big girl wi’ pigtails who ran away”. It may work for the good-looking ones. The fragrant few…the Tony Blair’s of the world but the ploy is not holding up for the Scottish Manse-raised and, fatally for him, dour humourless Scot Gordon Brown.
If you read any of the heavies today you will see the rallying cries, the “We’re Gordon’s buddies” drivel.
Were I in Gordon’s black polished shoes I’d be extremely worried by that and my finger-nails would be bitten back to beyond the quick and somewhere around the elbows.
Gordon needs a charm offensive which, regrettably, most would find offensive. He needs to produce a rabbit out of his dark top hat the size of Bob Hoskin’s mate Roger in the 1988 film “Who Framed Roger Rabbit?”
Ask yourself this first series of questions: Who framed the dark-man from the North? Is there a rabbit in anyone’s hat anywhere? Every oil-price hike means greater and greater pressure on an over-stretched British tolerance and we are all aware every oil increases brings in another tranche of massive taxation for the UK Government which appears to be too thick to realise the game is up and the great unwashed has seen what it is about.
My in-box is filled with messages from “sensible” people asking me to boycott this or that petrol outlet because of higher than acceptable prices. Why can’t I just boycott politicians? All politicians.
The answer to Gordon’s mental anguish is not too hard to find but before you start feeling warm gushes of sympathy it may be as well to understand this Dead Man Walking is as guilty as everyone else who sat in that disgraced and shameful Westminster place and voted for a war (in my and your name). A war based on lies and tenuous transatlantic friendships.
The second question has to be:
Is the finger-nail biting due to pressure or guilt? I hope it not a combination of both because unless Gordon Brown can practise what we all have to do sometimes, that is, ignore the danger and press for the winning line, then the execution shed does await. At least in Gordio’s case it is likely to be a metaphorical rather than a Saddam Hussein literal political drop.
The Herald’s page one lead today is worth a read as is The Independent’s: Ministers Deny Plot
In 2012, we’ll give up and just allow the planet to change without our interference.
The campaign, which launches on May 26, will promotes EDF Energy’s role as the first sustainability partner of the London Olympics and encourages consumers to save energy by visiting its site. It will run across TV, radio and digital activity.
Save energy by watching the telly and then turning on the web. The ads feature former champions running on a giant wheel hooked up to a dynamo. Champions like Olga Korbut, a resident of Scottsdale, Arizona, where the average temperatures are:
May 93.6; June 103.5; July 105.9; August 103.7; and September 98.3.”
Korbut has developed a program for adults using basic gymnastics warm-up exercises.
Like flying to London -which means everyone warms up…
THE Church of England Newspaper on Islam in the UK:
If recent reports of trends in religious observance prove to be correct, then in some 30 years the mosque will be able to claim that, religiously speaking, the UK is an Islamic nation, and therefore needs a share in any religious establishment to reflect this….
At all levels of national life Islam has gained state funding, protection from any criticism, and the insertion of advisors and experts in government departs national and local. A Muslim Home Office adviser, for example, was responsible for Baroness Scotland’s aborting of the legislation against honour killings, arguing that informal methods would be better. In the police we hear of girls under police protection having the addresses of their safe houses disclosed to their parents by Muslim officers who think they are doing their religious duty.
While men-only gentlemen’s clubs are now being dubbed unlawful, we hear of municipal swimming baths encouraging ‘Muslim women only’ sessions and in Dewsbury Hospitals staff waste time by turning beds to face Mecca five times a day — a Monty Pythonesque scenario of lunacy, but astonishingly true…
The point is that Islam is being institutionalised, incarnated, into national structures amazingly fast, at the same time as demography is showing very high birthrates…
Today the Christian story is fading from public imagination, while Islam grows apace.
Mark Steyn adds:
Strange to witness one of the oldest and most successful of nations commit suicide without even being aware of what it’s doing.
Why should Islam be worse for you than Christianity?
ALL change. The No. 16 to Beijing will not be stopping at Beijing.
Proposals to send a red double-decker bus by road from London to China, to coincide with the Olympics, have been dropped after critics derided the idea as a gimmick and a waste of almost half a million pounds…
Taxpayers will still pay more than half the bill for the project, lauded by Ken Livingstone, because of the expense incurred in planning the journey and hiring bus drivers.
The move comes as Boris Johnson, the new Mayor of London, launches an Olympics cost-cutting drive and says that as few officials as possible would be attending the Games.
Mr Livingstone claimed that the Beijing trip would highlight London’s public transport system to the world, via one of its most recognisable symbols, and help to forge ties with China.
It was cancelled last week by London 2012 organisers and Transport for London (TfL), which funded the journey, in the wake of the earthquake in Sichuan province.
The trip, which was to be undertaken by eight drivers at a cost of £450,000, was considered to be unsafe and in bad taste, given the scale of the disaster. However, given that Mr Johnson had denounced it during the election campaign as a publicity stunt and a “ludicrous waste of public money”, the decision was regarded by his aides as a “happy coincidence”.
A spokesman for Mr Johnson said: “He was already very sceptical about it and in need of persuading, but TfL and the Olympics board reflected on the earthquake and decided to pull it anyway.”
Mr Johnson scrapped another facet of Mr Livingstone’s legacy when he axed a controversial tie-up with Venezuela, and half-price bus and tram travel for some of the capital’s least well-off. Mr Livingstone signed a deal with the South American nation’s state-owned oil company last year, agreeing to provide transport advice in return for a 20 per cent cut in TfL’s bus fuel bill.
The savings were used to offer discount fares to around 250,000 people on income support.
At the launch of his successful campaign to oust the two-term Labour Mayor, Mr Johnson called the deal with Venezuela’s President Hugo Chavez “completely Caracas”.
No room up top – although it’s empty…
MOHAMMED al-Dura was killed by the Israeli Army in a shoot out with Palestinian militia. Or not:
In a potentially ground-breaking decision for the way the modern television news media operates, a French court today ruled against the state-owned “France 2” TV network in the long-running libel case surrounding the alleged shooting death of a Palestinian child, Mohammed al-Dura, in the Gaza Strip in 2000. (Reports from AP, in French, here; and here from The Jerusalem Post.)
The death-footage of al-Dura – the veracity of which has been repeatedly questioned by media watchdogs, one of whom defeated France 2 in court today – became a cause célèbre in the Muslim world. Osama bin Laden referred to al-Dura in a post-9/11 video; the killers of the Wall St. Journal reporter Daniel Pearl placed a picture of him in their beheading video; streets, squares and academies have been named after al-Dura.
Today’s ruling shows there are serious doubts about France 2’s version of events, and that the entire world press – including the American TV networks – were irresponsible in being so quick to take at face value the claims of a local Palestinian cameraman working for France 2, a cameraman who has admitted his partisanship.
If it hadn’t been for the way the al-Dura video was then repeatedly played on Arab and international networks, the second Palestinian intifada may never have developed the way it did, thousands of lives might have been saved and there might even possibly have been a Palestinian state living in peace with Israel by now.
File under: But the little kiddies are only armed with stones