Thursday, January 31, 2008

Obama or Clinton?

I touched on this at LabourHome, suffice to say that following yesterday I think it is likely that this time next year we will either see the US have it's first black President, or it's first female President.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Jeremy Beadle Has Died

Have just read in the past twenty seconds from the front page of Yahoo.
A consumate entertainer, along with an encyolpeadic brain, although not everyone's cup of tea.

The Ashes To Ashes Villains

In Life On Mars it was the Test-Card Girl (which was apt because she did freak me out slightly as a small child, and I find I was not alone)
In Ashes To Ashes it's going to be a clown, of the sort seen in the video to the David Bowie single of the same name. Plus there will be George and Zippy from Rainbow as well.
Which suits my decades old television prejudices down to the ground. I have never liked Rainbow (was a Play School fan), and whilst George was okay, Zippy was, and is, a puppet that has annoyed me to the point where I can't watch him without glaring at the tv screen.

Same Nasty Groups Within the Conservative Party?

From Hugh Muir's column in yesterday's Guardian.
If I were a leading Conservative I would want an investigation, so lets hope David Cameron will launch one.

1812. It Wasn't Just the Overture

Thanks to Iain and Paul for reminding me of the various articles going around saying that 1812 was one of the worst years in history.
Mind you, I am sure the years 1933-1945 cause stiff competition. In my own lifetime, definetly 2001, simply because of 9/11.
As for me personally, I think one of my best and worst years was 2004. That year I was working for an MP on a short-term basis, I got to know Kerron Cross (one of the most thoughtful and helpful friends I have in the Labour Party), I attended that year's Labour Party Conference as a delegate, I was in my first relationship for five years (even if it was short-term), and (slightly more battle-hardened), I fought my second election campaign for Councillor of the Baldock Town Ward.
On the minus side, I lost a close friend in a freak accident on the London Underground, I got made redundant along with about half a dozen others in my job at a local coffee shop due to a company takeover, and of course the aforementioned relationship ended.
And the best year overall? Well I think that's yet to come, as for the worst, well I think that was 1993 (I had short-term depression), 2000 (was unemployed), and 2004 (for the reasons given)

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Blog Review

In the past week or so, the amount of daily hits on my blog have substantially increased and have remained fairly consistent.
So with that in mind, I thought I would do a little audit and ask you guys what you like about my blog? What sort of stuff do you prefer me to blog on? What are the weak areas of my blog? etc..
Let me know what you think, either privately, or in the comments section.

Derek Conway

I indirectly learnt a harsh lesson some months ago, not to automatically pass judgement on a politician just because a) I find he or she dislikeable and b) he or she is a Conservative or a Lib Dem. And yes, I did have that attitude, but I soon realised that if I were in the Party on the receiving end I would find such swift judgements nasty and unfair.

Now I don't like Derek Conway, mainly because from some of what I have heard about him he seems to be a nasty piece of work, and yet I can't gloat over this case.

I also don't think this is a witch-hunt, but I would say to Conservatives and Liberal Democrats when they gloat over Peter Hain and other unfortunate cases, not to throw stones in glass houses. These scandals affect us all and David Cameron should consider what he would demand Labour do if this happened to us and then have a good look in the mirror and ask if a) he would inflict the same punishment, and b) if not, then why not, and what that would say about his judgement!

Monday, January 28, 2008

Rupert Murdoch and Bono Doing a Waiter's Shift

Yes I did a double take when I read about this, but I thought it was a good stunt, helped make a point, and undoubtedly made a few critics sadistically happy on both left and right.
That said, it does highlight the simple fact that more needs to be done for the cause of women worldwide

Paul's Blog Posts Of The Week

Kerron Cross on the speech all politicians would like to give, but can't (and like Kerron, I agree that voters are fit for purpose :-), and it is an unfair speech in the same way it's unfair when people slate politicians in general)

Rupa Huq on Galloway having a barney with his fellow, or soon to be former, Respect colleagues

Will Parbury on the Boris dilemma

WongaBlog on the BBC Drama "Mistresses"

Lord Soley is involved in the setting up of a House of Lords blog, entitled "Lords of the Blog"

normblog looks at "The banality of evil"

Pootergeek on the novel that exists in all of us. (Well some of us perhaps ;) )

Harry Barnes on the issue of pulling out of Iraq

Iain Dale on why it's a good idea to support Barack Obama

Ellee Seymour on the Royal line of Succession

Paul Linford on the personal attacks and smears aimed at Gordon Brown

UPDATE: Meant to have included Cally's Kitchen's take on Peter Hain's resignation from the man on the street. Sorry about that!

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Barack Steaming Ahead

Very pleased to read about this result this morning. To be honest I was starting to seriously worry that the Clintons' election campaign was succeeding. Obviously Barack Obama's campaign cannot relax now, but I think that it is becoming an increasing possibility that Obama could be on the way to getting the nomination, and to get ahead by such a percentage in South Carolina is impressive.
One thing I do hope comes through all this, and that is whether Obama or Clinton wins, one will give the other a prominent post if the Democrats win this year's Presidential election. It's probably not likely to happen given the negative campaigning that has been going on between them and if I were either of them I wouldn't want to do that, but both are talented individuals with much to offer and working together they can achieve much.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

The Growing Nastiness in the London Mayoral Elections

I was faintly disturbed to read about this in today's Guardian. On face value it does look as if Boris has been showing a lack of judgement that one wouldn't expect from any candidate aiming for such an office as Mayor of London, although I hope for all our sakes that he is innocent.
But it does show how dirty the Mayoral campaign is getting, with the daily attacks on Ken Livingstone. Now like many of those on the right (and in some cases centre) of the Labour Party, I am not a natural fan of Ken Livingstone, but I find easily things to praise and criticise him for. For example I think he has done a wonderful job in bringing in the congestion charge and tidying up various parts of London (such as Trafalgar Square), as well as his unifying comments in the wake of the July 7th bombings. On the other hand I find his palliness with certain individuals like Hugo Chavez somewhat disquieting and he should have apologised for the remarks he made to that Evening Standard journalist (in fact he should never even have made such remarks in the first place).
Critics of Ken Livingstone should spend less time trying to throw dirt on him and spend more time trying to work out why he has hardly lost an election in London. After all, this is someone who has been controversial for much of his political career and who, in what I still think was morally unjustified at best, invited Gerry Adams to London in the early 1980's, when the IRA were still bombing London on a fairly regular basis. In any case the only effective result in negative campaigning is that, whilst it may have the hypnotic effect of succeeding in the short term, in the long term it turns voters away in droves and adds to the unfair comment; "Politicians! Well they are all the same aren't they!"

Friday, January 25, 2008

Small World

Have found out that Britney Spears latest boyfriend went to the same Uni as me, though not at the same time I think (if we were there at the same time, he would have been in his final year when I was a Fresher).
Ah well, it just goes to show what a small and strange world we live in.

Quantum Of Solace

Okay, some feel that is a bit of an unusual title for a Bond movie, but it is the title of a short story featuring 007 that Ian Fleming wrote in the late 1950's. It later featured in a collection of James Bond short stories entitled For Your Eyes Only.
In any case it looks like it will be a worthy follow up to Casino Royale, with Bond out to break the organisation that Le Chiffre worked for and still recovering from the betrayal and death of Vesper Lynd. It's certainly good on plot in a similar way, if not better than From Russia With Love and On Her Majesty's Secret Service.
Incidentally it turns out that this year is the centenary of Ian Fleming's birth, so Royal Mail will be having some Bond-themed stamps out this Spring. Ah well, interesting but does it beat The Living Daylights out of previous themed stamps? ;)

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Gene Genie

Gene Hunt's back :)
Ashes To Ashes, exactly next fortnight, 9PM, BBC One.
Think I will re-read Gene Hunt's Guide to Modern Policing tonight ;)

Stevenage Tory Council leader Defects to UKIP

Check it out here. Plus UKIP have published her comments on this defection on their site (see here). Interesting reading all in all and one which will not make the Conservatives happy.

Hain's Resignation

Apologies for not posting on this earlier, but thats what comes of going to a Labour branch meeting almost sraight from work.
As I have said before, I have had a lot of time for Peter Hain in the past but that resignation was the best thing he could do, and indeed has done. Hopefully he is innocent, but that doesn't mean that he hasn't been incompetent at best in this matter.
I also gently refute the assertion that I was responsible for this scalp (very funny Recess), or indeed any other blogger, so much as the fact that Hain was silly and therefore got caught, and that capture, so to speak, was done by a variety of people; the decisive ones not being politicians or political activists.

Ringo and Liverpool

(Wikipedia)
Ringo Starr, erstwhile drummer of The Beatles, has been getting some stick for his comments on the Jonathan Ross show some days ago.
Personally I don't find this offensive, although perhaps a bit tactless. Thing is you can hold affection for a place without wanting to return as such. For example I have warm memories of the village my family lived in before we moved to Oxfordshire in 1979. Vague, fuzzy memories (which is not surprising given that we moved shortly before my fourth birthday), but memories of warmth and affection nonetheless. Do I want to return there? Not really because it's now a different place, I am a different person (obviously, would be really worried if I wasn't). The same goes for when we moved from Enstone in Oxfordshire some years later. I still love the place and hold warm memories, but to move back would mean realising that time has moved on, that not all the familiar faces are there and coping with the realisation that I would be one of David Cameron's constituents ;)

We all have this about places we used to live and work in don't we? Esp if the landscape changes slightly and new buildings appear and old ones get demolished or change (like the Post Office in Enstone having moved a few buildings down the road). Ringo may have been tactless and thoughtless, but I have no doubt that the affection for Liverpool remains.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Cameron and Osborne and Punch and Judy

I know this is a bit strange for a Labour person to say this, but when David Cameron became Leader of the Opposition I was vaguely hopeful. Hopeful in so far that whilst the Tories would hardly change, he, in some ways like Blair, would try and start a revolution and that here, Labour and the Lib Dems would have an opponent whom we would respect.
I think that today, the very last droplet of that respect went down the plughole.
Cameron, who wants to one day lead this country and join the ranks of World's statesmen, stated when he was elected leader that he wanted to see an end to "Punch and Judy politics". How often we have seen him fulfill that pledge here, here and here. Not forgetting of course the interview with The Times this morning.
Make no mistake, Paul Linford is right that there seems to be a concerted attack on Gordon Brown's personality by the Tories'. This goes beyond simple satire, take Richard Littlejohn's comments, or Kelvin Mackenzie's (where he ended up insulting Scots in general), or George Osborne (see here and here) for who, whilst he made a mistake rather than a malicious move on failing to declare £487.000 hardly showed himself as someone who would make a good Chancellor of the Exchequer (I mean you would have thought he would have double and triple checked if it was okay given the sheer amount involved! I certainly would and I say that not out of self righteousness, but because I would be nervous if faced with such an amount being bandied about).
I have a horrible feeling that, given this sort of behaviour and whilst it's in the past, there is still something of the Bullingdon about Cameron and Osborne. I hope not, I really hope not, because that would be bad for all of us in politics, not just them. Our job, as Labour activists, bloggers, etc.. is not to take this abuse lying down. Gordon doesn't :)

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Farewell Jimmy James

(BBC Online)

A true hero, and one who will be much missed.

A View To A Kill

I was disgusted to read about Russia's plans to dril for oil in the Arctic, but have found I have covered it already. That said, we need to make it clear to the Russian government that this kind of behaviour isn't acceptable. In any case, what with this, their intimidation of the British Council, and other possible misdemeanours, what possible benefit is there for them in the long term by saber rattling and playing power games? It only puts up the backs of the International Community and, as David Milliband has said, stains Russia's reputation.

Heath Ledger 1979-2008

Have read this just minutes ago, am rather stunned by this. No details as of yet although they think it might have been a drug overdose, in any case it is a reminder in one sense that it doesn't matter if you are young, the fact you and those close to you are alive means a great deal. At least it does to me, having already lost two friends of mine within the past seven years

Bobby Fischer

I have to say that I didn't really take to Bobby Fischer as a person. I remember reading his comments on 9/11 some years ago and being appalled and disgusted.
Having said that, reading the various obits on him over the weekend, I have come to the conclusion he may well have had a mental illness of some sort. He definetly suffered from paranoia, as the events of the 1972 World Chess Championship showed.
In any case I hope he now has the peace which so eluded him for most of his life.

Monday, January 21, 2008

McCartney Health Fears Groundless

From the man himself. Well that's a relief, but it just goes to show how far a story will travel before it's provenance is known.

The Punch And It's Sex

Well a bit of a strange title, but one of the first that sprung to mind just now.





EASTENDERS SPOILERS





For those who are EastEnders' fans and do not want to know what happens next week, stop reading right now. Because Ronnie Mitchell will have thumped her boyfriend for having cheated on her with his ex wife.

Now some viewers my think this is deserved, but I find it rather disturbing. For one thing we are talking about a punch here, the second question to ask oneself is would those who will cheer Ronnie be in the same mood if the sexes were reversed! Suddenly the whole plotline and Ronnie Mitchell herself take on a whole dark dimension, my point is whether viewers will be so aware of that?

Barack Obama speaking at Dr Martin Luther King's Church Yesterday

Check out this speech, awesome stuff. I sincerely hope he will be the next US President although he has a hard hill to climb. Even if he doesn't however, he has certainly helped inspire the US elections this year and the American political environment beyond that

(Obama 08)

Paul's Blog Posts of the Week

Cally's Kitchen on why he is giving Nick Clegg a D-

Kerron Cross on the strange places some friends and former colleagues end up in (such as appearing in an advertisment made in Egypt)

Rupa Huq on "No Go Area's"

Fair Deal Phil on the love and support in combating the BNP that is Liz Dawn, a.k.a. the late Vera Duckworth

Alex Hilton on the lessons we can learn from the Hain/Harman debacle

Normblog on the stick Oprah Winfrey is getting for supporting Barack Obama over Hillary Clinton

Lisa Rullsenberg on the first episode of the new series of Torchwood

Iain Dale on getting diabetes (It's not often my paternal side comes out towards a fellow blogger, and a Conservative at that, but I wanted to make him a cup of tea, pass him some digestives, and tell him that all will be well so long as he was sensible. Which I more or less did, minus the tea and digestives, in any case he seems to know what to do)

Louise on the trauma children suffer in war, and in places like concentration camps

And I know this isn't a blog and that it was posted three months ago, but check out the satirical news site NewsBiscuit's post on Radiohead tax

Friday, January 18, 2008

Corey Delaney - The Teenager Who Should Apologise to his Parents and Keep His Mouth Shut

I expect a no of you have read about this. I personally find it hard to believe that he is not cupable as he says, when he boasts that it was the ''best party ever''
Plus he seems to be enjoying the spotlight, as for ignoring his parents calls I wonder if that is shame, or guilt, or fear. Personally I hope it's all three.
I suggest the media stop interviewing him, boosting his ego, and that his parents make him apologise and give him the toughest punishments parents could give to a child, which will no doubt include depriving him of just about all his money to help pay for all the damage, make him apologise in public, and make him do some community service. It should also be drummed into his fog filled brain that he has not just angered and humiliated his parents, but that a whole community isn't too pleased with him either.
As for trying to prevent other teenagers doing this kind of thing, part of the answer is simple; don't leave them alone in a house while you swan off on holiday, visit relatives, etc..

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Twenty-Five Years of Breakfast

(BBC)
I think it is fair to say that I am of the very last generation of people in the UK who knew of a world before Breakfast TV. In fact I can vaguely remember there being just three TV channels, and programmes not starting till around 9AM, unless you happened to turn on to BBC 2 and catch some boring programme with the strange name of Open University.

Then Channel 4 arrived, swiftly followed by BBC Breakfast Time, and then TV AM

I can remember when Breakfast Time started, even at seven years old I dimly knew that a major change to British broadcasting was taking place, so I got up about half past six, swiftly washed and dressed, and had breakfast before dashing into the sitting room and watching a bit of BBC Breakfast before heading off for school. Thing is though, I can't remember a single thing about that first episode.

But I do remember the old sofa look and the original presenters; Nick Ross , Frank Bough , David Icke (I don't know if I am more shocked by his views or that he was once a respected anchorman), Francis Wilson, Selina Scott, and others. Later on at University and in the following years, one or two of my male friends and I enjoyed watching it if only because we liked Jeremy Bowen's blokey style and we adored Sophie Raworth.

And unlike TV AM and it's lack of bias ;), BBC Breakfast had, and has, class and style in abundance. It gives plenty of time to decent news coverage, treats it's entertainment news with respect, and it's audience as intelligent. I can't believe that some of us have spent 25 years with the programme, but we salute you.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

American Muslims Speaking to the World

Hat tip to Rachel from North London
It's a truly inspirational video and very moving. It certainly makes you smile at various points.
Perhaps those of us who are Christians should make a similar video to try and counter the prejudices made towards our faith :)

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Disclaimer

I have put the disclaimer on the top of my blog because one or two people have quoted me from this blog, referring to one or two of my volunteer titles, i.e. N.E. Herts Labour Press Officer etc..
I thought it was obvious when I was writing as an individual, in other words when I wasn't, which was rare, I made it clear that I was also representing the views of others, clearly that might not be perceived as such, so I have felt it important to put in the disclaimer. As before, if in future I am using this blog in any official capacity then I shall make it clear.

Paul's Blog Posts Of the Week

Cally's Kitchen on one of his favourite bookshops

Kerron Cross on ice cream vans in the dead of winter

Rupa Huq on Alison Jackson looking for a Gordon Brown lookalike (It's because Gordon is unique ;) )

Luke Akehurst on the lack of organisation of Peter Hain's campaign staff

Mike Ion on the hope for a Clinton/Obama dream ticket (I couldn't agree more, although obviously I prefer Obama/Clinton at the moment ;) )

PooterGeek on his single status and the film I am Legend (However he is wrong about Will Smith being the first black President. It will be Barack Obama :), hopefully :/ )

Lisa Rullsenberg on Green Wing's Stephen Mangan

Iain Dale on last nights episode of The Palace (watched it myself, and note that the Royal siblings have medieval royal names like Eleanor, Richard, and Isabella. All to do with the scheming perhaps)

Monday, January 14, 2008

On Newsnight Tonight

As some of you may know, tonight I will be briefly interviewed on Newsnight (well it's already been recorded) with regards to my comments yesterday on this blog about Peter Hain, so if you have nothing better to do tonight... :/
I also ought to point out, after reading Guido's piece, that I whilst I am Press Officer for the N.E. Herts Labour Party, the views expressed by me were my own, and whilst they echoed the views of others within the Labour Party nationwide, I was not speaking in any official capacity

Sunday, January 13, 2008

George Osborne and the Donations Row

Before I start I will admit that I take a personal dislike to George Osborne. I find him to be unpleasant and where his attacks on Gordon Brown are concerned, just plain nasty.
So I am trying not to crow over his current misfortune because it would equally be unpleasant of me if nothing else. It may also be that he is totally innocent, but I find it unsurprising in a sad but cynical way that so far, no Tory blogger has really mentioned this issue whereas at the first whiff of such a scandal on the Labour side, they are quick to post a blog entry on the subject.
I hope, for the sake of all politicians, that Hain and Osborne are as pure as the driven snow and are just plain naive with money and are proven to be so, but yet again I am feeling depressed. Not just about what has happened, but also because of the knee-jerk and hypocritical reactions all of us involved in politics are inclined to make. In other words if it is an opposing political party give them a public lynching and hope that the mud spreads across the Party concerned and if it's your own, duff' em up in a back alley and hope no one notices so as to protect your own reputation.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Hain Must Go

I feel sorry for Peter Hain. I am also saddened when you consider that when he first became well known, he was an active anti-apartheid campaigner when some of the dinner table classes in Middle England weren't worrying about global warming, but felt that we were being a little too unkind to the South African government whose police seemed to have an astonishing no of bizzare suicides in police custody.
He faced down a nasty smear campaign and has since become one of the more redoubtable figures in front-line British politics. The fact remains however that at best he has shown a certain degree of embarrasing ignorance and, I hate to say it of a political opponent but Iain Dale is right, if this was the Conservative Party we would want a resignation on the table with immediate effect.
Perhaps if he is proven to be innocent he can return at some point in the future, but this story looks like it will be ongoing and I for one am not looking forward to tomorrow's papers, and if nothing else he should hand in his resignation first thing on Monday

Friday, January 11, 2008

The Pay Increase Dilemma

To be fair, a lot of the money in an MP's salary does not go straight into their pocket. Some MP's use their finances to help fund their office, but at a time when public sector workers are grumbling about the percentage of their pay increase, it would not be the done thing for our elected representatives to award themselves a pay rise. Unfortunatley it will mean sitting tight for a while, but such a move would be beneficial all round in the long term.

Sir Edmund Hillary 1919-2008

Definetly one of the great pionners of our time. Of course there will always be the wonder as to whether Mallory and Irvine got there first (unless conclusive evidence appears), but Hillary and Tenzing made it back and there were other achievements, such as the involvement Hillary had with the first crossing of Antarctica. He also did much to help the Sherpa community in Nepal, building hospitals, airstrips, bridges, and nearly 30 schools.
One of those people who truly deserved their knighthood and who will be much missed.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

David Cameron and Backing Horses

I am not sure how the Republicans will take this, but whilst Cameron is spending time trying to get pally with all the candidates, (is this just in case his fantasy of being at No.10 comes true and one of them might end up in the White House?) Gordon Brown takes the correct assessment for a leading politician and says it's a matter for the americans.

Incidentally caught the highlights of yesterday's PMQ's last night and saw David Cameron reaffirm his commitment to avoid Punch and Judy politics by listing all the governments woes over the past month. As I saw this I was thinking "Say something disarming before rebutting Cameron's attack, like I bet it took you all morning to rehearse that! As it was Brown stated that Cameron can rehearse all those speeches in front of the mirror but in the end it's actually doing that matters and compared Labour's economic success and where we have protected the vulnerable in society compared to the Tories. Make no mistake, if the Conservatives get back in, it will be those on the bottom line who will suffer the consequences.

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

The Philosopher and the Actor

Both Simone de Beauvior and William Hartnell would have just had their 100th birthday if they were alive today (Partial hat tip to Tim Roll-Pickering). One almost wonders how history would have turned out if de Beauvior became an actress and ended up battling Daleks and Hartnell became a Parisian philosopher, but lets not go there ;)

New Hampshire and the Electoral Compass

So Hillary clinched New Hampshire. Was a little surprised, but there you go. At least Obama is just 3% behind. It just goes to show that when you are involved in political campaigns you cannot take anything for granted and you cannot relax your guard. Obama will have some work cut out in the coming months but it will be worth it.
BTW Cally's Kitchen has taken part in the test on the Electoral Compass website, and found that his politics are closest to Bill Richardson and furthest from Fred Thompson. It was the same for me when I took the test, although I was pleased to see that Barack Obama was second in being closest in sharing my political views.
If you want to take the test, you can find it here. (Hat tip to both Cally's Kitchen and Iain Dale)

Richard Littlejohn and His Vile Humour

Was disgusted to read in the Daily Mail yesterday, Richard Littlejohn comparing Gordon Brown to Chris Langham and using the particular nasty phrase "kiddie fiddler smile"
The thing is, one doesn't expect the opposition, and by that I mean any opposition to the government, to go easy, or even be nice about the PM. After all it would be hypocritical to expect otherwise when the left dished it out without pulling punches on Margaret Thatcher.
But there are limits, and such comparisons with Gordon Brown is a step too far. There are many columnists and pundits out there in the World who are bullies and behave in a vile way that many would not get away with. I hope Littlejohn is one of those who doesn't get away with it and apologises for his feeble attempt at a joke.

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Jeremy Clarkson and his personal finances

I was going to blog this morning on Jeremy Clarkson's idiotic move in mentioning some of his personal financial details in conjunction with the Downing Street petition suggesting that he should be Prime Minister. However Rupa has beaten me to it.
The next question is, do the many Facebook users who set up Clarkson for PM groups, as well as the 30,000 or so people who signed the Downing Street petition feel stupid this morning? Hmm, I wish I didn't have a cynical view of human nature sometimes :/

Monday, January 07, 2008

Paul's Blog Posts Of the Week

Admittedly it was Iain Dale and his Daley Dozen which gave me the idea, but it is a good idea and there are a no of blog posts out there which deserve a wider audience.

Cally's Kitchen on Mills and Boon (plus a quoted attempt from a Radio Five listener)


Rupa Huq on the demise of Respect


Parbury Politica quoting Donal Blaney's view on equality (Is this the view of your average Conservative?)


Tim Roll-Pickering's plea for stability in Kenya (Puts it much better than I ever could)


Chicken Yoghurt on Wetherspoons (Like Paul Linford, I also agree wholeheartedly)


LATE RECOMENDATIONS: Labour and Capital's posts on Fidelity Investments, recommended by Skuds

Friday, January 04, 2008

The Noro Virus

It is nasty, in fact I was off work with it myself last month. The sensible thing to do is to close yourself off, drink some water, and lie down somewhere for twenty-four hours. But then if people are silly enough to go to hospital with it, and complain when asked to leave for vomiting in a corridor, you do wonder about people's ability to use the brain that God gave them, so I think this will be around for a while.

D.B. Cooper. The Latest!

Ever since I first heard of this case I have been fascinated, and now it's being reopened.
Personally I think he was killed jumping from the plane, but you never know. In any case it seems like he didn't think his plan through. But like all mysteries, fascinating nonetheless.

Barack Obama: The 44th President of the United States!

I have backed this guy from the beginning and after last night (although we are not out of the woods yet), I think it is probable that he will win. Why? Because after Bush I am not sure the Americans want another Republican administration (and sadly they won't be too happy about anyone from the Bible belt either) Hillary Clinton, as capable as she is, is a divisive figure, and Obama has run a tight campaign and is someone who puts his inexperience to his advantage, which is the making and maturity of any politician.

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Mars Hill Blog Stats (Dec 2007)

Top Ten Cities listed (from where people visit Mars Hill)


London, Brooklyn, Cincinnati, Leicester, Singapore, Oceanside, Arlington, Redditch, Irvine, Mountain View


Top Ten Countries listed (In order of most visits to my blog)


United Kingdom

United States

Australia

Canada

Singapore

Turkey

Pakistan

Germany

Italy

Ireland


For those who have started reading my blog in the last month, or who have returned after an absence, a warm welcome to you all


Top Ten Blog/Web Visitors

1) Cally's Kitchen (+4)

2) British Blogs (+ 2)

3) Kerron Cross - The Voice of the Delectable Left (-2)

4) Rupa Huq (+ 2)

5) Cassilis (+ 3)

6) Prague Tory (NEW-ish)

7) Paul Linford (+ 5)

8) Tim Roll-Pickering (- 5)

9) Freemania (-2)

10) Iain Dale (-8)

Out of the Top Ten are tygerland.net and UCL Conservative Society


Top Ten Searchwords that lead people to my blog


mars hill blog

recess monkey

mars hill paul burgin

sarkosy

mars hill 2007

buttho

december blues

miranda grell

croydon pub resturants

marshill blogg

Mars Hill blog entries of 2007

For me, not many stand out as such over the past year (compared to the last two years), although personal favourites inc the ones on Gays and Adoption , Katie and Diana, and Personalities and Politics. As for most popular blog entry for Mars Hill readers, it happened to be this one.
Oh the power of media advertising over argument ;)