Saturday, February 15, 2003

Assorted snippets from the World Press.

"BRITAIN and America are to persevere with plans for war against Iraq, even though they took a beating in the UN Security Council last night."

"There was little new ammunition in Mr Blix's words, by contrast, for Britain and the United States. The two countries must now decide whether to press forward and submit a new resolution to the Council declaring that Iraq is already in "material breach" of Resolution 1441 of last November, implying that the time for force has come."

"Rattled by an outpouring of anti-war sentiment, the United States and Britain began reworking a draft resolution Saturday to authorize force against Saddam Hussein"

"a diplomatic strategy that would demonstrate Britain and the United States want U.N. support but not at any cost."

There are, and have been over the past weeks, MANY more such snippets.

My point is?

My point is I am pissed off that our dear and glorious Australian Prime Minister is not getting a fair suck of the sav. I can only presume it is a devilish conspiracy by the International media to ignore this little Aussie leviathan. I read the newspapers, listen to the radio and watch the TV here in Australia and they give the true picture of our Prime Minister as a dominant player in all these events surrounding Iraq. If it weren't for his presence and invaluable input the whole Iraq strategy would fall into a screaming heap. Bloody hell, he is after all contributing 3 inflatable dinghies, a fully painted plastic model Tiger Moth, Bert Higgins and Joe Spencer from the Coonabarabran Army Reserve, 2 boxes of emergency rations Vegemite and a snake bite kit to the war effort. Ungrateful bastards!


'The Age' editorial cartoons.

Just a couple of points seeing as the 'media backlash' against today's unprecedented peace rallies has already begun (two million in London alone, another million in Rome and several thousand in New York...see, I told you that not all Americans were spineless fools). Firstly, following the original Gulf war when the objective was to get Saddam out of Kuwait and fell short of toppling him from power, the Americans backed the Kurdish uprising in the south of Iraq hoping that Saddam's government would collapse under their revolt. The Kurds were making extremely good progress and had claimed several cities when, for no particular reason but true to form, the Americans suddenly got bored and decided to remove their backing. Naturally Saddam moved in, killing thousands...possibly millions. And the same old shit returned to Iraq.

Any regime change in Iraq must be internal (the idea of an American general taking control of Baghdad being extremely unsettling). And the only way for an uprising of the populace (let's face it...nobody wants Saddam in power) would be to lift the stupid fucking UN sanctions that, far from crippling Saddam, are just crippling the Iraqi people, and then organise and actively help those trapped inside the regime to overthrow it. Time and time again the American and British administrations have let Iraq down and hurt its people. Saddam has taken his opportunities (granted courtesy of the great Western fuck-ups) to further compound the issue. Yes he's a bastard. Yes he needs taking out. No, there shouldn't be a war! It'll destabilise the Middle East, result in hundreds of thousands of innocent people being killed, cause further rifts between so called 'Christian' and 'Muslim' nations and plunge the world into an ever deepening crisis.

There have been some excellent quotes floating around today...Tariq Ali for example: "When a democratic regime fails to listen to its people then it's time for a regime change. Tony Blair must go!" and the reporter for Channel 4 news: "Today the largest focus group imaginable descended on London." Get your head from Bush's sphincter Blair and instead of conversing with the chimps try listening to your own electorate before democracy is completely dead.

"The British don't like Hussein any more than they liked Nasser. But millions of Britons remember, as Blair does not, the Second World War; they are not conned by childish parables of Hitler, Churchill, Chamberlain and appeasement. They do not like being lectured and whined at by men whose experience of war is Hollywood and television.

Still less do they wish to embark on endless wars with a Texas governor-executioner who dodged the Vietnam draft and who, with his oil buddies, is now sending America's poor to destroy a Muslim nation that has nothing at all to do with the crimes against humanity of 11 September. Jack Straw, the public school Trot-turned-warrior, ignores all this, with Blair. He brays at us about the dangers of nuclear weapons that Iraq does not have, of the torture and aggression of a dictatorship that America and Britain sustained when Saddam was "one of ours". But he and Blair cannot discuss the dark political agenda behind George Bush's government, nor the "sinister men" (the words of a very senior UN official) around the President.

Those who oppose war are not cowards. Brits rather like fighting; they've biffed Arabs, Afghans, Muslims, Nazis, Italian Fascists and Japanese imperialists for generations, Iraqis included – though we play down the RAF's use of gas on Kurdish rebels in the 1930s. But when the British are asked to go to war, patriotism is not enough. Faced with the horror stories, Britons – and many Americans – are a lot braver than Blair and Bush. They do not like, as Thomas More told Cromwell in A Man for All Seasons, tales to frighten children.

This war is about oil and regional control. It is being cheer-led by a draft-dodger who is treacherously telling us that this is part of an eternal war against "terror". And the British and most Europeans don't believe him. It's not that Britons wouldn't fight for America. They just don't want to fight for Bush or his friends. And if that includes the Prime Minister, they don't want to fight for Blair either."

ROBERT FISK. The Independent

The United States of America: Land of the Free!

Now showing at the Odeon.

For years I've heard the hype about this sole surviving superpower of the political stage. The Greatest Nation on Earth! The Dog's Cohones! The Big Apple! The best in music, movies, art and freedom of expression. So finally I took a closer look.

Such a disappointment!

What started out as a serious and enterprising proposition (the opening number: "Send to me your weary, your sick, your old and your young..." was most inspired) quickly developed into a farce and then, ultimately, a slapstick pantomime. The whole thing was nothing more than an arrogant conceit. The leading actors were unable to deliver their lines convincingly (George Bush in particular was not only cross-eyed but continually stumbled over the longer words) and the lack of conviction, intelligent observation and ironic humour was appalling. It could have been written by a six-year-old...cabbage that is. There was a singular lack of depth to most of the characters. The political understanding of foreign affairs was pathetically judgmental, amounting to little more than xenophobic name calling, and the idealism (for which the production was accorded its many accolades) was nothing more than trussed up capitalism masquerading as propaganda.

The sets were impressive enough, in a "not exactly beautiful but at least it's big" sort of way. And the supporting cast of millions playing the roles of common Americans varied from decent, intelligent people to idiotic morons with very few speaking parts. It was, however, the administration that let the whole thing down so badly. Not since I saw "Iraq: The Country Elects Saddam!" at the multiplex have I seen such a catastrophic miscarriage of democracy. In fact, the main thrust of the set up democracies wherever the government could around the world...seems to have been built on a false premise, considering that America throughout the debacle blatantly ignored the democratic process within the UN.

On the whole then, not worth buying a ticket to see. The seating is uncomfortable (especially if you're trapped between two morbidly obese burger kings) and the craftsmanship is shoddy. There are some excellent bit-part actors and some great ideas floating around, but the main players are not up to the job and the ensemble carries too much pride, stupidity and bullishness to rate it amongst the other great civilisations.

In summary: Don't believe the hype.

The largest peace rally in known history has been taking part across Britain today as millions turned out in force up and down the country to protest against the looming war in Iraq. (Loved the slogan: "Make Tea...not War!") Even Fleetwood, much to my surprise, got into the swing of things. A couple of hundred people gathered around the town clock this dinnertime. (Don't laugh...that's almost half the population of the town, so it was quite a good turn out on the whole...well, half the literate population anyway.) Most were waving placards that read simply: "No!" (I assume they were protesting against the war. It was a bit unclear...especially seeing as the tram fares are set to increase next week.) Unfortunately I went into the bakers for half a dozen barmcakes and when I re-emerged they'd all disappeared. After half an hour of searching down the backstreets I reached the conclusion that they'd probably retired to the Fisherman's Arms for a pint of Boddingtons. least they tried.

Tony bin Blair, speaking from his safe-house in Glasgow this morning, defended his hawkish stance...although it must be increasingly difficult to see what's really going on in the inky darkness of Bush's ever tightening sphincter. "I'm proud to live in a democracy," Blair said, failing to see the irony of his words. "But, I put it to you simply (so that you can understand you ignorant peasants) that killing Saddam would be a humanitarian act." Well, I'm sure that we can all agree with that, but removing him by force? There's got to be another way. No matter how you look at this an estimated 50,000 innocent deaths cannot be construed as a humanitarian act. It's time to stop your constant spin Tony...we're all fucking sick of it. The only thing we want you to spin from now on is yourself on our middle digits. 'Nuff said. Enjoy the demos. This afternoon George Clooney, Tony Benn and Glenda Jackson reveal why Uncle Tony is a jug-eared pratt and Charles Kennedy and Bianca Jagger will be handing out refreshments in Hyde Park.

The Deputy Editor suggests we give the ROTW Gong of the Week jointly to Rae McDonald and the people of Bellingen, just some of the million faces in the streets of 600 cities around the World.

"Rae McDonald, 58, from London, said although she was not especially politically minded she felt strongly that there must be a way to avoid war. "I cannot make any difference by sitting at home and just grumbling," she said.

In the small town of Bellingen near the New South Wales central coast, Australia, the crowd of protesters was estimated by organisers to be barely smaller than the local population of 2,600.

Friday, February 14, 2003

From the Road to Damascus.

My epiphany has come. I have seen the light. How could I have been SO wrong?

Once the afterglow of my attendance at the Melbourne Rally for Peace had faded, I got ta thinkin'. In the cold light of dawn and after a slab of Foster's Cold Light, I realised this with blinding clarity. "Bugger me, George, Tony and John are the only ones who have got this whole thing right!"

It is a brilliant military, socio-political strategy. Surgically remove Saddam. In the process "colaterally damage" a goodly percentage of the millions of Iraqis who find Saddam as offensive, brutal and criminal as do the Coalition of the Rambos Willing.

Saddam is gone, loose ends are bulldozed into the ground, an American supremo rules the land, there is rejoicing in the streets street of Baghdad, liberated Iraqi mothers hold up bits of their children to wave at the saviours in khaki and peace reigns throughout the scorched earth land of oil and money milk and honey. An Iraqi population guaranteed to be forever grateful to their new overlords liberators. ("No hard feelings, cobber-effendi. I didn't really get on with most of the family, so I wasn't all that unhappy to see them get up close and personal with that smart bomb that didn't quite pass its '0' levels.")

Not a dry eye in the Whitehouse.


Now if only that Osama bloke would just stop giving us grief and bugger off. I've head from informed sauces ('Bearnaise Associated Press' and 'Alliance Tartare') that he has signed up for the Saudi Arabian series of "Survivor". All I can say is vote him off ... vote early and often. The Florida Electoral Commission is overseeing the poll. Victory is within our grasp!

An extract from the 'Diary of A Feminist'. January 15th 2003:
Led an "All Lesbian Single Mother Anti-male Peace March" through Southport to campaign against the chauvinists intent on plunging women into war this weekend. As women we're sick of patching ignorant male soldiers back together. The wages are appalling. Did you know that a male surgeon earns twice as much as a female toilet cleaner? Testosterone-empowered bastards!

"Women Against Nuclear Campaigns" (or W.A.N.C. for short) the group was called. I thought the name up. And I designed most of the placards as well. Dildos linked in 'Peaceful Harmony'. Unfortunately the police confiscated most of them before we started, for being too pornographic. They said they were inciting a 'race riot' because the black penises were smaller than the white ones. Cretinous idiots! I'm just not very good at drawing that's all and I ran out of room on the right hand side.

Anyhow, we gathered at "Patel's Novelty Souvenir Emporium" armed with leeks, carrots and reunified South African lentils. Then we headed towards the prom, removing our clothes on route. We were jeered by fascist male bigots with their arse-cracks on display as we passed a building site. One of them told us to, "Get our kits back on for the lads..." When we tried to explain what we were doing the overweight monster went on, " least put your tits away, Love. Y' could tuck them things into your socks if you were wearin' any." I explained that bras were symbolic of the restraints on women's liberties. He said, "I don't care nothing about that, but you're frightening some o' the boys. They think you're threatenin' them with snooker balls in socks."

Then some other chauvinist git called out, "'Ere...I reckon you lot could prevent a war for all that. If Saddam saw you bunch o' fat cows comin' in the nuddy like that 'ee'd run for the 'ills. Y' wouldn't see 'im for dust!" Bloody men! They think with their penises and fuck with their brains. Er...or something.
Later we had a run-in with the Fleetwood Over 60's club who were down for the annual Inter-county Beetle Drive. They said we'd made Elsie Bagshaw sick and some seagull had tried to peck the carrots from her vomit and given her a heart attack. Naturally a riot broke out. Those biddies are vicious. They kept battering us with their Zimmer frames and we were only saved from hospitalisation by the intervention of the police. Our case comes up on Tuesday. Until then we're filing formal complaints against police brutality with the Home Secretary. Not that he'll listen...he's a male bastard, although his blindness is to be taken into consideration.

Editor's note: If you are going on one of the hundreds of anti-war rallies around the world this weekend then here's hoping you have more success than Brenda! Power to your elbow and all that!

Melbourne brought to a standstill by anti-war protest

Posted: Fri, 14 Feb 2003 19:08 AEDT

Melbourne's inner-city has come to a standstill as thousands of people rally against a war in Iraq.

Swanston Street in Melbourne's inner-city is overflowing with thousands of people calling for peace.

Some climbed scaffolding to get closer to the stage at the State Library where politicians and people from the Victorian Peace Network voice their protests against a war.

The network has told the crowd the war is not about terrorism or weapons of mass destruction but it is about oil.

Democrats Senator Natasha Stott Despoja has called for Australian troops in the Middle East to come home.

The crowd is meant to march to Federation Square but it is already overflowing.

It is thought the protest is the biggest peace protest in the country since marches 30 years ago against the Vietnam War in which Australian troops fought alongside US forces.

Oh yes, newpapers still love a good cliche photograph.

Report from Deputy Editor Sedgwick who was on the spot looking for a copper to wallop with a banner, but the bloody boys in blue were far too nice and, dare I suggest, even sympathetic. Wasn't like that back in my day, damn coppers have gone soft! I blame Reg Hollis!

I would estimate there to have been 100 - 150 thousand at the rally, (I am totally naff at estimating crowds) however most of the streets in the Melbourne CBD were packed and traffic brought to a standstill. To pinch an esoteric phrase used by highly qualified statisticians "there was a shitload of people there". A complete cross section of ages (from old farts like me to toddlers who had taken off time from writing their Ph.Ds to register their protest) and, to use an term of which I am very chary, "classes".

Jim Cairns, a warrior from the Vietnam Moratorium days, a former deputy Prime Minister and the conscience of the Australian Labour Party in the 60s was present ... more in sorrow and dismay than in anger and protest. He is ailing and fading fast, but was there for one last hurrah. Genuinely chilling was the intermittent playing of air raid sirens.

The rally may well have been a pissing into the wind ... dunno ... but as long as some of the gungho Australian politicians cop some of the spray it will have been worthwhile.

And now a word from our sponsor, Sheriff Bush

“The terrorists brought this war to us – and now we’re taking it back to them. We’re on their trail, we’re smoking them out, we’ve got them on the run. We’re hunting them down one by one, all across the world.”

Mmmm ... as at 14/2/2003 it's been 516 days since George W Sheriff said he'd catch Osama bin Laden 'Dead or Alive!'

Fancy our Mark Latham describing President Bush as "the most incompetent and dangerous President in living memory". Shame, Mark, shame!

"Here is a bit of collateral damage: The first time I met Abu Ziad was in 1998. He had been the chief accountant with the British Iraqi Oil Company. Then, he had five children and lived in a big house by a bomb shelter. He recalled how during the Iran-Iraq war, when nearly 1 million young men died on each side, he would be at home in Baghdad, hearing the sounds of women wailing in the night for another lost son, husband or lover. He remembered thanking God that he had married late, and that his children were too young to be sent to fight. Then, three years after that war, President Saddam led them into another. At 2am on February 13 1991, two bombs hit the al-Amiriya bomb shelter near his home. The first was a drilling bomb that pierced the roof and cut open the central heating tank. Boiling water poured through the ceiling on to the women and children below, who were playing dominoes, watching Tom and Jerry videos dubbed into Arabic and eating kebabs.

Only 15 minutes later, the second bomb exploded with such force that he never had the chance to identify the bodies of his wife and four of their five children: Zena, aged 14; Fuad, aged 12; Lena, aged seven; and Sadaad, aged six. "I saw a body being brought out, then I saw it was Zena's, but they were piling them on top of each other and I couldn't see if it was her. We weren't allowed to go close." Later that morning, Abu Ziad stood outside the shelter. He remembers noticing the ankles of the dead women and children. Their skin had been branded with the metal coils of red-hot mattress springs as they struggled to climb over the metal beds, and each other, to get out. The doors had been locked for security. Four hundred and six people, mostly women and children, died inside." SOURCE.

Oh yes, George. The terrorists brought this war to you – and now you’re taking it back to them, you're gonna smoke them out, you're gonna have them on the run. You're gonna hunt them down one by one, all across the world. Abu Ziad and countless other innocent Iraqi bystanders won't be able to thank you enough.

The irrefutable evidence Colin Powell has given us that Osama is in bed with Saddam. PORKIES, COLON, PORKIES!

Sheikh Omar Bakri Muhammad is a pain in the arse. He was a pain in Syria, his country of birth (he was part of a failed coup that got him deported), he was a pain in Saudi Arabia (they revoked his passport) and now he is a pain in Britain (where he acts as a judge in the Islamic court, seeks British nationality but reviles our laws).
He claims to live his life according to Shari’a law, God’s law. The laws of “men”, including things like democracy and freedom of speech, are vile, the creation of Satan, and should be stamped out.
All things, he believes, come from Allah.
His council house and the handouts he has received courtesy of British taxpayers since his arrival in 1985 are, in his own estimation, gifts from Allah so he owes our overstretched Social Security system no thanks whatsoever. No doubt, should common sense prevail and he is given notice to quit Britain, he will use those vile Satanic laws, most noticeably the one regarding human rights, to overturn any such decision. If Allah does indeed provide, then the Sheikh won’t have to compromise his radical fundamentalist beliefs and hide behind the Laws of Satan he considers anathema to his beliefs. He can simply sod off and let Allah provide somewhere else.

Note: Radical Islamic fundamentalists like Sheikh Omar claim to be strict adherents to Shari’a law, especially as it is interpreted by Taliban clerics. The main problem with that statement is the word “interpreted”. Under this regime women are stoned to death for adultery. In the Qur’an, the punishment (men included) is not death but the administration of so many lashes. Shari’a law does not demand the mass murder of infidels nor their enforced conversion to Islam. So, is the Sheik’s version of Shari’a the Word of God - or the Law of religious and gender-specific hatred and intolerance? Like all fundamentalists (of any stripe), the Sheikh is a religious bigot and a hypocrite. He hates the West yet has applied for a British passport which, if granted, is subject to him swearing allegiance to our sovereign and our laws. So that also makes him a liar and a fraud. He gives ordinary, hardworking Muslims living in Britain a bad name. He is hiding behind laws he claims he doesn’t believe in so isn’t it about time someone told him to piss off?

"I am down on the official record as saying that I'm ashamed of my party. It's not my party that I'm ashamed's my government!"

Glenda Jackson (actress turned labour m.p.)

Thursday, February 13, 2003

"Administration leaders faced questions on Capitol Hill about the showdown with Iraq. Secretary of State Colin Powell said Americans should be "prepared for a fairly long-term commitment" in Iraq.

Appearing before the House Budget Committee, Powell said he could furnish no estimate of the cost of any war with Iraq. But he did say he thought that the Arab nation should be able to adjust quickly after a war - in contrast to the slow pace of recovery in Afghanistan.

Iraq has an effective bureaucracy, rich oil resources and a developed middle class, Powell said. "I would hope that it would be a short conflict and that it would be directed at the leadership, not the society," he said.

Once those goals are achieved, Powell said, the US military leader in such a war would take temporary charge of Iraq. But that person would give way to a prominent American or international figure, whose own term would be limited with an eye toward turning over the government to the Iraqis themselves, the secretary of state said.

"We would try to build as much as we can on the structure that is there," Powell said. "The challenge would be to put in place a representative leadership."

"The US military leader in such a war would take temporary charge of Iraq. But that person would give way to a prominent American or international figure." Arrogance? Neo-imperialism? To the victors, the spoils?

Take note John and Tony, you don't seem to be getting much of a gig in this scenario. Maybe your invitations to the victory party are in the mail along with the cheques. As always, arselickers just end up with a nasty taste in their mouths.

A little trivia quiz for all the boys and girls from "The Presidential Prayer Team for Kids"

Do you know which Colin Powell in the early 1990s worried that:

1. "Ruling Baghdad" would come only at "unpardonable expense in terms of money, lives lost and ruined regional relationships?"

2. Addressing the "inevitable follow-up," who also asked whether Americans would really learn to live with "major occupation forces in Iraq for years to come?"

3. Finally, who argued that, "fortunately for America, reasonable people" would think such a scenario "would not have been worth the inevitable follow-up?"

And a timely reminder of events, propaganda and character assassination from 1991.

Shadowy Home Secretary, David Blunkett, failed to answer questions in the Commons today concerning the mass of artillery still surrounding Heathrow airport and the 'perceived' terrorist threat implicated by its presence. Instead the 64 year old 'blindly loyal servant to Tony bin Blair' stated that, "We're not allowed to tell you what the threat actually is on the off-chance that it compromises our intelligence." A case of closing the stable doors after the horse has bolted, if ever there was one. "We have no intention of alerting the terrorists to what me might, or might not, know," he added, enigmatically.

Now, call me ignorant if you like, but surely surrounding Heathrow airport with thousands of armoured troops, aircraft carriers, tanks and scud missile launchers might just give a tip off to the so-called terrorists that the British government has got wind of something. (The House of Commons sprouts, probably, if the flatulence coming out of Blunkett's gob is anything to go off.)

Rant of the Week investigations have turned up the truth about the terrorist threat. For the first time we can now reveal that Peter Mandleson has control of a deadly 'Spin Bomb' and is holding the country to ransom with it. This weapon of mass destruction (the bomb, that is, not Mandleson) can rotate rumours up to three-thousand R.P.M. and, through the centrifugal force generated, push concerns about the War aims further into the background than ever before. At Hans Blix's request Tony bin Blair has produced a fourteen thousand page document for the UN stating that he has nothing to declare...especially as far as improvements to the Health Service, Schools, Transport, Fox Hunting, Inner City Redevelopment and all his other abandoned policies are concerned.

Sleep Baby Jesus, don't say rude words. Robillina's going to drop a big turd. And if that steaming dump don't sting, Then Robillina's going
Shut it you overfed slag an' get me down from this crucifix! Me fuckin' arms wreck!
Hello Boys and Girls! Are you sitting comfortably? Baby Jesus isn't, is he? He's hanging from a cross, look! And do you know why he's hanging from a cross?
Because some fat bitch nailed me up 'ere, that's why!
That's right...because he wants to show us all how much me loves us.
I can think of better friggin' ways. A quick fuck round the back of the bike sheds for example.
Now then Baby Jesus and I are going to sing some songs and we want you all to join in. These songs are being taped so that we can send them across to the Gulf where our brave Christian boys are waiting to kill the evil devil-worshipping Muslims. Isn't that right, Baby Jesus?
Fanny batter!
This first song is called 'Yellow Submarine'. It's about a group of hideous Iraqi bastards trapped in a substandard submarine that the British government sold to them during the Iran war. You can join in by supplying the screams of the blasphemous Iraqi sailors as they slowly drown in their own effluent during the chorus if you like.
It's coming loose. I can move me fingers!
Have you got your triangle there, Baby Jesus? We're about to start...
Freedom! I'm off that bastard cross! I can feel the blood coursing through me feet. Christ they don't 'alf pong.
Come on Baby Jesus...sing along with the guitar and we'll send our love across the ocean to our gallant soldier friends before they start the slaughter.
Bollocks to that you enormous twat. I'm off to fuck Mohammed up the bum.

I would like to inquire, Brian, have you made some photos about your surgery, like the other real cartoonists?
I think for example to Bud Grace and his hemorrhoid surgery.

Rift between the US and France widens

Thurs, 13 Feb 2003.
American politicians want to hit back at France and Germany for their failure to support US policy on Iraq.

The officials may introduce measures making it more difficult to sell French products in America.

There are also suggestions of plans to cut the number of US servicemen based in Germany.

The BBC reports that several senior members of Congress are planning to introduce resolutions which could significantly deepen the rift between the United States and France and Germany.

The senior member of the house armed services committee has drafted a demand that all American companies boycott the Paris air show, the most important air industry event in the world.

The speaker of the house, Dennis Hasterd, says he has been discussing with senior colleagues measures that might impose extra regulations on bottled water and wine from France and there is reported to be a growing momentum building for early action to reduce the number of American service personnel in Germany.

I don't usually go into bat for either the Frogs or the Krauts but ...

I really fear that this is a nasty taste of things to come. Retribution and payback for those who won't join the "Coalition of the Willing". (AKA "The Conga Line of Suckholes" © Mark Latham.) You're either with us or you're an international leper. When I was at school I think this behaviour was variously known as intimidation, blackmail or bullying. These threats come from the alleged "land of the free, home of the brave" yet I am completely unsurprised. Guess which countries will be at the end of the queue when the U.S. controls the world's oil should everything go according the the Primate's plans?

Certain irony in that the arse-licking, ever so accommodating British and Australian governments can't get large categories of agricultural and industrial product into the U.S.A. because of the featherbedding protectionism of the Bush administration. In simple terms, a boycott. With an ally like that who needs ...

Wednesday, February 12, 2003

Increased security round Heathrow airport continued today as various tanks, fully armed soldiers and members of the Gestapo continued to 'put the general public at ease'. "We have heightened security," replied David Blunkett to the wrong camera when questioned about the mines planted round terminal three, "Because we received warnings of a possible terrorist threat and didn't want anyone to be alarmed."

"Bugger that," retorted Mrs Pinkwhistle (79) of Stockholm Road, Newport after almost being flattened by an amphibious landing craft. "I haven't had the willies put up me like this since I attended the last meeting of the Newport Young Conservatives."

Oddly enough, the civil service (and I have my sources...believe me) are still on the lowest security setting despite increased tension around America's latest military state (aka Britain). "The whole situation smacks of propaganda," commented Albert Sydcup, an ex-civil servant himself, into his Newcastle Brown at the Fleetwood Arms. "It's just Tony Blair trying to justify his ridiculous over-reaction to Saddam Hussein by scaring the shit out of us all." Sydcup (46) was later arrested for urinating on a tree adding fuel to his conspiracy theory as well as a touch of mange to the oak tree's roots.

This on the queries log - "conga line of suckholes"

An interesting collective phrase for the UK and US administrations.

I'm glad that bone-idle great grandson o' mine is finally out of 'ospital. I don't know 'ow to operate this bloomin' internal machine on me own ('scuse my Yiddish). An' I've bin missin' me late night lesions with that nice man from America what wrote t' me.

"Dear Hilda@Over60'" 'ee wrote. "You too can now have a penis extension. Save $$$ when you apply to Auto-Pumps R Us and give your partner a real treat!" Well, my 'Enry might be dead, God rest his cockles, but I've always fancied an extension w'at with me kitchen bein' so small an' it bein' the only room in the 'ouse w'at catches the sun. So I wrote back to Mr Blackmamba an' we struck up quite a friendship. 'Ee reckons 'ee can give me extra sucking power and add two inches to me 'ose. 'Ow could I refuse? I'm sick o' me back going 'cos o' that crappy old vacuum cleaner o' mine ('scuse me Korean). The carpets in this place need all the 'elp they can get. Tiddles ain't gettin' any younger and 'ee keeps depositin' on me hearthrug. Come t' that matter, I'm not gettin' any younger neither, an' 'alf the time I can't make it up the stairs.

Besides, it's only dollars. There's about four 'undred o' them t' the pound Serling or something. So I gets meself a credit card from that nig-nog in Boots ('ee's a rare 'un...'ands and lips all over the's good t' see the community doin' their bit an' givin' 'im a job though...'ee can't be more than fifteen...if 'ee wasn't sellin' credit cards 'ee'd be in a brothel by now) and I'm all set to add thirteen inches t' me girth (they must be sendin' out free boxes o' chocolates with every purchase) when that bloody useless great oaf of a grandson o' mine goes and blows up 'is swimbladder and ends up in hospital.

Inconsiderate long-haired 'ippy! Don't know about poncin' around some ward with glamorous dolly nurses on 'is arms. What 'ee needs is a stint in the army! Put 'im up against the Iraqis as cannon fodder. You don't see any of our brave boys in Karsi complaining about a bit o' tummy rot, do y'? 'Ee's always bin the same though. I remember when 'ee was little and 'ee got 'is winkie caught up in 'is zip. What a fuss 'ee made! All that blubbin' an' tears over such a little thing! Oy! That's enough of that! And now 'ee's fraternisin' with all those male nurses without a care in world about 'ow it reflects on 'is family. Bloomin' gayboys the lot of 'em. And some of 'em are even Pakis. Right...that's enough. Go on...clear off this board until you can keep your mouth shut. Whilst you're under my cyber roof you'll obey my rules and that's all there is to it. I'm sick and tired of your homophobia and your racism and your political ignorance and your stupid complaining about how much better everything was during the war. Why don't you act your age and croak you silly old biddy?

Ahem...apologies for that folks...Great Grandma Hughes has been sent to her room to empty her kafeta. In the meantime I'd like to tell you about the dream I had last night. I was on a beach in Benidorm or somewhere and Catherine Zeta Jones and Michael Douglas were messing around taking photos of each other in their swimsuits. It was really horrible. Michael Douglas looked like an old turkey with a paper mache head and Zeta Jones kept singing Welsh operas and making bleating noises. Anyhow...I noticed that on some the photographs I was in the background minding my own business. Not only that but my image was slightly blurred. Naturally I was most distressed so I'm going to sue them for £1,000,000.00. Well, if they can live in fucking fantasyland and go running to the courts every time their pathetic dream is slightly tarnished then I'm damned sure I can as well.

This on the queries log - ANN WIDDICOMBE AND ABORTION

You silly sod, it's far too late for that!
Yesterday, the headlines splashed across the front page of the Daily Wail were a reaction to those of Monday’s New York Post (NYP). The aim of the US rag was to remind the French of the sacrifice made by thousands of American troops to rid the country of the Nazis yoke. A poignant photo of some of the 10,000 crosses in the American cemetery at Colleville-Sur-Mer was a stark reminder of the debt that France owes its wartime allies.
France knows how to repay its debts. De Gaulle kicked Britain in the teeth after France was liberated so the brusque refusal to help Bush invade Iraq shouldn’t come as a big surprise. More recently, French authorities caused a sensation when a proposal to bulldoze war graves was revealed. If the NYP and the Bush administration thinks it can shame France into changing its position on Iraq then they are going to be disappointed.
Now Bush is fuming over the perceived betrayal of Turkey by their NATO allies, France and Germany. Poor Turkey, friend to the US and sharing a border with Northern Iraq, needs extra military might to protect itself from a possible attack from Saddam’s forces. The cynical Chirac and Schroeder perceive US concern for Turkey’s border as nothing more than a devious pretext to build-up forces in the region as a prelude to attacking Iraq from the north as well as from Saudi Arabia in the south, hence the veto.
France’s implacable opposition to Bush’s war plans might seem heroic (lucrative trade deals with Saddam not withstanding) if it wasn’t for the fact that French companies are more than happy to help Turkey build a series of dams across the Tigris and Euphrates rivers which threaten to siphon off water vital to Iraq. A reduced water supply will have a more devastating effect on Iraq’s population than any “collateral damage” should Gulf War II go ahead.
Politicians – doncha just love ‘em?

Editor's note: I don't know what the Yanks are complaining about anyhow. France gave them that stupid big statue they've got in New York harbour after the Second World War, didn't they? Pity they didn't give the American people genuine liberation to go along with it...stands back and waits for the cries of 'Ignorant owe us big time too for saving your British butts, God bless us...' from the American faction.

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As the crisis over Iraq at the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation deepened today, Colon Powell accused France of being a country full of: "onion-chomping, butt-munching froggies."

In retaliation to both this slander and the bogie that Powell removed from his snotter before flicking across the room, Jacques Chirrac replied that, "America was a land of lard-arsed Big Mac chewing ignoramuses".

Colon Powell then left the room to look the word up in his dictionary, but not before Chancellor Schroeder leapt to France's defence by shouting, "Ve kicked your vobbly buttocks in Vorld Var Two and ve can do it again! Fatsos!"

Never one to usually side with the biggest bully, Jack Straw, speaking on behalf of the British people (something that we're all, quite frankly, getting a little tired of now) threw a custard pie at the German chancellor and a barney broke out that resulted in three split lips, one Chinese burn and a dead leg in the cloakroom.

Later Jack Straw made a statement for the cameras. "France," he said...and here I quote: "France is following an extremely chaotic president."

Well there you go...we're not that different after all then.

Tuesday, February 11, 2003


Hundreds of troops ring Heathrow, fearing terror attacks

In London more than 400 troops with armoured vehicles have taken up positions at Heathrow airport, amid fears of an Al-Qaeda attack.

In a statement, the Metropolitan Police said its unexpected decision to call in the British army to guard Heathrow -- the world's busiest international airport -- was "precautionary".

The use of troops has been authorised by Prime Minister Tony Blair.

Chicken bin Little Blair has been taken in for questioning and a good going over with a rubber hose.

Outdated combat gear on frigates

By IAN McPHEDRAN, defence reporter

"A navy warship carrying more than 180 Australian sailors on patrol in the Gulf will be at risk if war breaks out because it is fitted with a 1970s era combat system.

The so-called fire control system on board the guided missile frigate HMAS Darwin is so out of date that the ship is unable to defend itself from aerial attack under certain weather and sea conditions.

ADI said it had a solution for the combat system and the system had passed factory acceptance testing. It blamed complex navy specifications for the delay.

Upgrade work will start in September this year and ADI expects to finish by 2007."

I gather the main delay was caused by a short supply of industrial strength vinegar and brown paper. American Vice president and part time British Prime Minister Chuck Blair has hastily arranged an emergency despatch of bicycle tyre repair kits for the Australian Navy. The carrier pigeons are scheduled to arrive with their payloads sometime in 2005.

War mad, says ex-defence head

By IAN McPHEDRAN, defence reporter

A retired defence chief has accused the Howard Government of madness in pursuing war against Iraq.

Former Chief of Defence Admiral Alan Beaumont said there was no justification for war without United Nations backing, and little justification for war with it.
He also warned the military campaign could be long and bloody and attacked the Government for promoting a low-casualty operation.

"This is bloody mad," Admiral Beaumont told the Herald Sun yesterday. "I don't understand how it is in the national interest to kow-tow to the US."

Retired Major-General Alan Stretton said he could not understand why Australia was meekly following the US to war.

To the plank at dawn with these unpatriotic bastards.

Bush counts Aussies in anti-Iraq coalition

"Mr Bush said Mr Howard was a close, personal friend and a man of clear vision.

"He's a man grounded in good values and I respect him a lot, and I'm glad he's back here in the Oval Office," Mr Bush said.

Mr Howard said it was self evident that Australia was part of Mr Bush's coalition.

"Self evidently Australia has demonstrated a level of involvement and commitment and willingness beyond most other countries," Mr Howard said.

But he insisted that Australia would still be able to withdraw.

Mr Bush and Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld both emphasised the Howard Government had the final say on Australia's possible military commitment.

But it was widely reported in the US that Australia has signed up to fight with America regardless of any UN endorsement."

"he insisted that Australia would still be able to withdraw." It would take a 10 ton tractor to pull the Maggot's brown nose from where it is currently planted, and the upgrade work on the tractor is not due to start until September this year and is expected to be finished by 2007 at the earliest.

Crean, US ambassador to meet again

Federal Opposition leader Simon Crean has called another meeting with the US ambassador as the row continues over Labor's position on Iraq.

Mr Crean has accused the ambassador of unprecedented interference in Australian politics, as further comments by Tom Schieffer are published today.

The ambassador says Labor's handling of its position on Iraq is a rank appeal to anti-Americanism.

Mr Schieffer has issued a statement saying he looks forward to meeting with Mr Crean again but a spokesman says he is receiving medical treatment today.

Keep taking the tablets Tom.

Why we should fight Iraq: Bush

During a news conference yesterday with Prime Minister John Howard after their meeting at the White House, the president was asked: "There are many Australians and others who are still not convinced that they should be going to war with you. At this late stage, what's your personal message to them?"

"In this country and in Australia people believe that everybody has got worth, everybody counts, that everybody is equal in the eyes of the Almighty. So the issue is not only peace, the issue is freedom and liberty.

"I made it clear in my State of Union - and the people of Australia must understand this - I don't believe liberty is America's gift to the world; I believe it is God's gift to humanity."

Keep taking the tablets George.

Sorry to take your attention away from the big issues by the above postings. Here are the headlines that really count and dominate our newspapers today.

Behold a nation in shock and mourning.

"SHANE WARNE faces a possible two-year ban that could end his stellar cricket career after testing positive to a banned drug. The champion leg spinner had tested positive for diuretics - drugs often used to help weight loss or as masking agents for other drugs, a leading sports doctor said."


"Shane Warne's drag drug bombshell"

"A champs future up in air"

"Mates rally round stunned spin king"

"Warne's quick return after injury"

"Aussies still good bet for Cup"

"Warne's statement in full"

"Text of ACB chief's speech"

"ACB media release on Warne"

"Career highs and lows"

"I am shocked: Warne"

"I want to play"

On a personal note. Despite the grief I currently feel at the demise of this great Australian sportsman (I assume by the headlines he must be dead) I am going to dry my eyes, chin up, put on a brave face and march. Not since LBJ's (and doesn't he look like a peace loving, measured intellectual now!) visit to Australia at the height of the Vietnam debacle have I been moved to demonstrate, but on Friday Mr. and Mrs. Sedgwick and all the little Sedgwick wombat children are off to a Rally for Peace. (5 p.m. Friday 14 February State Library Swanston St. Melbourne. Ladies a placard.) BE THERE OR BE SQUARE! (Sorry about that but I can't shake off the heady days of my youth in the 60's. I remember them so clearly ... if only I could remember for what I went to the corner store this morning and why I forgot to put on trousers and underpants.)

On a deeply personal note I have found a wonderful critique from one of my adoring fans.

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR ( The Mercury (Tasmania, Australia) ) ; 11-20-2002
"Can somebody please, please tell Terry Sedgwick (The Feral Eye) that he is not funny."
Peter Hayes

Thank you Peter. That's what humorless people used to say about Torquemada. Your Semtex is in the mail. It's sure to put a smile on your face. Lucky I don't hold grudges.
P.S. "And if thine eye cause thee to offend, pluck it out."

   How soon will it be before a made for TV movie about how the hero remembers Iraq appears? The hero will be a tall muscular blonde man, probably American, or an ex-Eurotrash mechanic. He will have a girlfriend somewhere in the Eastern United States, she will be having problems with the distance he maintains from her even when he is in her presence, her eyes will be sad. He speaks in monosyllables when asked direct questions about the meaning of their relationship. He cannot help himself, he is the hero of the TV show. He will have a voice over remembering Iraq before the arrival of the attacking Blackhawks. The distant blue sky will fill with the needles of contrails. There will be an interruption of adds for large SUVs and amazing creams to rub on the skin that will turn you into a true beauty, directors will want you for their movies! There will be an add for a reality TV show about a normal day in the life of a crossing guard, or a coat room attendent. The hero will ramble on about what Iraq was like before Saddam, before the vast wastelands of biochemical warfare plants reduced stretches of desert into what looks like just outside of LA, or parts of New Jersey. He will have a small short wise cracking sidekick. The sidekick will be very greasy, short, with big eyebrows, he will probably be from Libya. They wil have a fight in a bar with thick tanned Marines, or Arabs, they will run from evil Moslim opponents with guns, they will be in a shoot out, explosions will occur at regular intervals. There will be pretty girls in bathing suits. There will be car chases with blonde models firing large bore handguns. More adds will interrupt the flow of your thinking. You will stare at the newspaper on the floor while the commercials for hair and toiletry products dance on the TV. Your phone will ring and a telemarketer will advance the proposition that you will contribute to a fund for the sad plight of over privileged youth. The show ill be continued next week. It is a special minimovie after all.

Bin bag collection! How difficult can it be? You stick on a pair of thick gloves, lift neatly tied bag "A" from outside my back gate "B", hoist into the jaws of the dustbin cart "C" three feet away and then move on to the next gate "D" along. Simple enough for even an American president to undertake, you'd think. In fact, there's actually more brain power and more physical work involved in tying the bag up in the first place, lifting it out of the bin in my kitchen, carrying it down the garden path, unlatching the gate and depositing it outside.

So, I ask you, why can't the gibbons who work for Wyre Borough Council fucking manage it without ripping the bags open and spreading my old bills and bank statements all over the alley?

It wouldn't be so bad if it didn't cost me £90.00 a month in council tax for this littering of my ginnel. £90.00 a month...and for what? I've been asking myself that same question over and over again for the last twenty years. One lousy lamppost at the end of the road that continually throws an epileptic fit (and has done since the great storm of '87 when it was hit by lightening and had its neural-system damaged), thirty seconds a week of some orang-utan in an orange boiler suit casting my rubbish to the four corners of Fleetwood, three hanging baskets outside the lighthouse and the local bobby who spends all his life drinking tea down at Mrs Henthorpe's house on Caldwell Crescent. By my reckoning that amounts to approximately £3.50's worth. So where's the rest of it going?

I have decided to investigate.

There is a story, possibly apocryphal, possibly not, about the civic centre in Poulton-le-Fylde...the hub of all council inactivity. You can't miss the building. The solid marble interior and the jewel-encrusted porch make it stand out even during a blizzard. According to the story, when the Lord Mayor walked into his brand new offices some years ago, far from being taken aback by the genuine Queen Anne chairs and the handprinted carpets, he frowned, said, "It won't do," in his best Arch Chancellor voice, and had them scrap the whole lot in favour of something more expensive.

Anybody out there who can verify this tale...along with the countless other 'alleged' abuses of Wyre Borough's council tax...please let me know and I'll be glad to pass the facts along to the local magistrate. After all, the council has been somewhat over-zealous in the past about taking me to court for 'none-payment of council tax' even when I'd paid it fair and square. On one occasion they ran me through court without telling me (I only found out three dates after the trial), fined me ten pounds for the privilege, and then asked me to pay the 500 and odd quid that I'd already paid and had the receipts to prove it.

Perhaps that's where all the money's going...on legal bills for cases against people who have actually paid but the council computer can't come to terms with. Stupid bastards.

In the meantime...and on a sort of related note...Members of Parliament have been asking Geoff Hoon when they're going to have a proper debate about 'The war against Iraq'. Geoff Hoon, in response, stated that, "I can't let you know when we'll have that debate because it might give the game away to Saddam." Considering that, under such conditions, the only time Parliament will be able to debate whether to go to war or not will be shortly after the war has started, the whole thing seems academic.

Democracy isn't dead. It's just being suffocated by a homicidal maniac in a nurse's uniform.

  I realize with pleasure that you are here again as in the past, Brian. Not for nothing, the doctors in England are able to make miracles.  

Editor's note: Now you know why I suffer so much from gallstones. It's all those babies I keep eating.

This on the queries log - LESBIAN MATRON GIVES SPANKING

Wishful thinking perhaps?

Deputy Editor (formerly and fleetingly known as acting Editor) says ... PERHAPS.

Monday, February 10, 2003

   I haven't posted in awhile. I'm really sorry about that and now that I'm back from the "Rest Home" , where I recieved "Rehab" I can take part in this truly annoying community dialogue about Iraq, war, sex, and the English. To this end I'll write about something none of you actually care about.
Where does the number 3 on 2003 come from? Who authorized the use of this number? Was it a tax supported government organization, somekind of psudo-communist post cold war subversively inspired secret cabal? Yes probably. You know how this works.
    The number three , (please note is spelled with 5 letters, that's irony for you huh? 5 is a prime too. Coincidence? The aliens are behind everything! ) is the number of fingers that Martians have, and they also have a three lensed eye. This is all very disturbing. Martians seem to like to wreck things, note that here in the picture, they are wrecking Seattle! Probably to put in an even newer stadium, don't worry about that as you'd actually have to live in Seattle to understand the humor in that, it rains a lot in Seattle Don't move here without an umbrella.
  They also like to invade small towns like Hopkinsville, Kentucky and probably cause havoc just because they don't know any better. Perhaps they are just poorly developed socially?
    Structurally, aliens are more like jellyfish than mammals. Doesn't that just seem wrong? HG Well's knows just what they really look like : " Those who have never seen a living Martian can scarcely imagine the strange horror of its appearance. The peculiar V-shaped mouth with its pointed upper lip, the absence of brow ridges, the absence of a chin beneath the wedgelike lower lip, the incessant quivering of this mouth, the Gorgon groups of tentacles, the tumultuous breathing of the lungs in a strange atmosphere, the evident heaviness and painfulness of movement due to the greater gravitational energy of the earth--above all, the extraordinary intensity of the immense eyes--were at once vital, intense, inhuman, crippled and monstrous. "
    It's obvious that HG has real issues here with getting along with others. You can here the actual 1938 broadcast of a real invasion by them here.
    I think there are a lot of reasons these things have been kept secret from us, mostly by a super secret black ops military department located in Roswell, Arizona, probably. Regardless of all that the group called the Raelians, they're the ones claiming that humans are from aliens, the ones who claimed to have cloned a kid, poor kid! Three eyes! The French scientist Boisselier, nicknamed Frankenstein by some has been extensively quoted we don't know why, as if she had anything intelligent to say, she says Dracula is alive and keen for some cloning action. "Oh yes, we have been contacted by him," said Brigitte Boisselier, director of Clonaid, a human-cloning company established by the Raelians, a religious sect whose members claim to be descendants of extraterrestrials. "Yes, he's alive, he is living in Berlin and he has no hair," she said in an interview from the eastern United States.
    You can tell she's an actual real scientist if she says she's met with Dracula. She did not discuss anything about his appearance or which Armani suit he wore. What a way to start 2003!
US President George W Bush has again warned the world body risks being seen as irrelevant if it does not act.

"It's a moment of truth for the United Nations. The United Nations gets to decide shortly whether or not it is going to be relevant in terms of keeping the peace," he said.

Sorry George ... what is your point? I didn't think "keeping the peace" was ever in your game plan.

Peace! George, peace? Go wash your mouth out with soap right this minute!

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"Often times I get confused and forget stuff," George W. says, as he rails against the risk from "Islamic tourist states".

"Tourists are brown folks who get on planes and come to America and do bad things, so we're having a war on tourism."

Federal Opposition leader Simon Crean says the US President has exposed what he calls the Prime Minister's deceit on the pre-deployment of troops.

After talks with Mr Howard, President George W Bush says he counts Australia as part of the "coalition of the willing".

Mr Howard says he has made it clear to the US administration he is yet to make a formal decision about committing troops.

Mr Crean says Mr Howard should be upfront with the Australian public.

"He was asked this at a Canberra press conference on the 28th of January for example, and wouldn't answer the question," he said.

"[He] said no commitment had been made but when George Bush was asked that very same question, do you consider Australia to be part of the coalition of the willing, he said yes I do, like a marriage proposal."

I see ... so Johnny the Maggot is a little bit pregnant. I hope he's got a watertight pre-nup.
These three on the queries log - pakis+iraqi+fuck+us penis; penis links exchange; "tadger" +"Tallywacker"

I guess there's more pricks out there than I thought.


"Why shouldn't I return to TV?" Michael Barrymore asks the world at large.
Return to TV? As if he's been hiding from the cameras and media publicity recently!
Not being one of Barrymore's legion of fans I could never understand his bankabilty in the first place. He's revealed himself to be a mean, snidey, debauched little shit of a man who wants us to believe that Stuart Lubbock's injuries (extensive internal injuries suggesting a serious sexual assault) were inflicted post mortem in hospital rather than as a consequence of being a guest at a drug-fuelled party held in Barrymore's home where he was seemingly assaulted before drowning. After the body was found Barrymore's first reaction was to run away. He's been running away ever since; from reality as well as from responsibility.
Have that man paid an obscene amount of money to appear on prime-time TV? Not bloody likely!!!

So, still no decision from the England cricket team and the ECB about the forthcoming match in Zimbabwe. According to a poll almost 80% of people believe that England should refuse to play in Zimbabwe so what's to decide chaps?

Following the debacle of the plagiarised report that Phoney and the Rats of Spin tried to pass off as a bone fide intelligence report, compiled by MI6, as a prelude to a war with Iraq I would like to nominate the following as a British "Axis of Evil": Tony Blair, Alastair Campbell, Geoff Hoon, Jack Staw. Together with their US and Australian counterparts (you know who they are) they have decided to have a war hardly anyone else wants. The consequences of attacking Iraq are unknown and have been largely ignored. Hoon has refused to rule out the use of nukes against a population that is less than half than that of Britain. Our nuclear capability is supposed to be a DETERRANT! When we start using it to threaten countries into obeying British and US dictats then that makes us no better than Saddam. When will New Labout back benchers realise that their jobs are NOT as important as removing our insane leadership?

The English Cricket Squad are still uncertain today as to whether their test match against Zimbabwe will go ahead or not. The Cricketting Board, casting ethics and 'fair play' to the wind, have yet to decide if the visit will be 'sufficiently dangerous to imperil the cricketers lives or not.'

Oddly enough, this has left the Australian squad in a quandry as well. In recent times Australia has become to Britain what Britain itself has become to America. For example: "We'll go to War with Iraq despite the U.N." rants Bush. "Right on," says Tony. "We'll go as well then." And after some considerable pause for thought, you can almost hear the corks clattering, John Howard chimes in, "Fair enough...count us in now that we know we're not the only ones." The Australian Cricket team is, apparently, waiting on England's decision to determine if they will play against Zimbawe or boycott the match. Yellow bastards. Any thoughts of your own Howard? Well...any that we could publish here?

Two of the Zimbabwe cricket team themselves today wore black arm bands as a protest against "The death of their country's democracy." Seeing as Tony Blair is the currently the only person in Britain willing to sacrifice the UN in favour of a pointless American fracas then it might be a good idea if the rest of us started wearing black arm bands for the same reasons. And that goes for the Aussies as well.

Europe is split. NATO is dead. The UN is coughing up blood. And the school bullies have taken over the classrooms with the usual intent of collecting pocket money through threatening means from not only the pupils but the teachers. 'Nuff said.

How to Stay Happy if you're a Middle Aged Male.

1) Drink beer: Lots of it. Make it the focal point of your life. After all, everybody else you know does and they're all happy. Besides, if you don't drink lots of beer and spend half your life in the pub it must mean that you're harbouring gay urges and that won't sit well with your macho appearance.

2) Play darts: It's cheaper than golf, it's less hard work than squash and you get to drink loads of beer whilst you're doing it. On top of which darts players have great fat stomachs just like yours and they're sexy, right?

3) Read the tabloids: They're full of naked women and they simplify all those complicated politics into easy-to-understand bigotry. During the evening you can sit in the pub with your dominoes and your beer bellies and talk about how fit the Page Three girls are and who you'd 'roger' given half the chance. This more than makes up for the fact that your wife is frustrated and you haven't had sex for weeks. Who's to know? Your mates certainly won't and they're the ones that count, right? Who needs sex manuals? All that 'clitoral stimulation' and 'G Spot recognition'? Far too much like hard work and research if you ask me. Instead, you can impress your mates by wolf whistling 17 year old blondes in short skirts.

4) Education is for tossers: After all, you've made it this far without having to worry about 'sociology' and 'archaeology' and stuff. The only education you need is to know the football stats for the last fifty years and how many pints it takes to get inside the barmaid's knickers. That'll keep you up with the Joneses and your peer group standing will be justly rewarded.

5) Wear denims and football shirts. It'll prove you're not old and queer. And the women'll love it. Especially if you hang a large gold pendant round your neck and give them a tantalising flash of your hairy nipples every so often.

6) Make sure you go out to the pub every night: Where you can joke with your chums about how you've left the wife with the blooming kids. Sure you made a mistake having children in the first place. Well, everyone was doing it at the time and it seemed like a good idea. But that's no excuse for being miserable now and having to spend quality drinking time watching them grow up. Staying in at nights only means that you'll have to talk with the missus and you know how laborious that can be. No, bugger that! Get drunk and watch football down the pub instead.

7) Above all: Remember, if it's good enough for your mates then it's good enough for you. You don't see them regretting the mindless inanity of their lives, do you? They don't go round talking to women that they don't actually want to sleep with. Or reading books or discussing politics or art or philosophy. Keep watching the football, mates! Keep drinking that beer and watching the football and ogling the dolly birds and stinking of Mandate and eating those extra-strong curries and laughing at students and talking bollocks in a patronising manner and avoiding books and dodging your inner self and making racist jokes. And in no time at all you'll wake up one morning to discover you're too old to care about middle-age any longer and are facing death in the face with no more baggage than a lifetime of darts and misogyny and alcohol. It's great!

Uncle Brian: Keeping the factories staffed and the worthless occupied.

Unusualy, I don't post odd links... or rather this links are differently bizarre: ghost towns in west and east.

What the forces of "God on our side" are taking to the "Oh, what a lovely war".

The United States, because we can!

Troops: 200,000+Tanks:900Ships: 120Aircraft: 850

United Kingdom, we wannabe a World power again, please Sir, please.

Troops: 42,000Tanks: 150 Ships: 16Aircraft: 120

Australia, we just wannabe patted on the head and thrown a bone.

Troops: 1500Tanks: 0Ships: 3 Aircraft: 25

Makes you seriously wonder why Australia is even bothering!

Guess anything that gives Little Johnny Maggot his first erection
has to be worthwhile. Don't count the cost, just feel the length.

Over the last couple of days I have become convinced that my recent spell in hospital was not 'just one of those things' after all, but rather the result of a well-planned conspiracy. It started last Saturday afternoon when some old biddy in Iceland accidentally-on-purpose ran into me with her Zimmer frame...a walking aid which, as I later discovered, was tipped with lethal gallstones. My impromptu hospitalisation was no coincidence. The nurse in ultra-sound deliberately made matters worse by attempting to fracture my ribs with a hand scanner and a bucket of jelly and the staff on the ward, whilst appearing genial to the casual visitors, were really doping me up on morphine to keep me away from this board.

"Why?" you might ask. (Then again you might fact, more likely, you're just sitting there asking yourself, "Why am I continuing to read this shit?") Well I've thought about that and at first I came to the conclusion that the CIA and MI5 wanted me out of the picture for a few weeks so that they could bomb the shit of Iraq and sway public opinion without my intervention. It has long been known by undercover operatives that "The Rant of the Week" board has a lot of influence on its readers who then go away and tell their friends and neighbours to organise anti-war rallies etc.

But then I thought again.

No...this was too skillfully conducted for the bungling idiots in American and British Intelligence (sic). This was obviously the work of Sedgwick and the desperate band of slackers I call my staff!

So here's my 'I'm Out of Hospital and in Recuperation Now' Speech...I'm back! Still in my sickbed and only half aware! Cramped up in pain and with only a fifty/fifty chance of survival. But I'm back! Now get to work and post some interesting items you bone-idle buggers before I have to hunt you down one by one with a very large stick and a bag full of my gastric bile!

Signed The Ed!