Sunday, May 13, 2007

What's it All About Then?


I will now fail miserably to answer my own question!

I've been aware of blogs for quite a long time, but for a long time dismissed them as either dull obsessive posturing at one end and people who think what their cat ate for breakfast is interesting at the other. Along the way though I started to come across a handful that were funny, moving, or thought provoking and gradually developed a small but, to me, important 'must read' list. Before you know it you are making the odd comment on them and eventually you end up here...

I don't exactly know what's going to end up here, I guess just whatever is amusing me or pissing me off right at the moment.

I'm not going to be able to improve on any of my favourite blogs but thought it would be interesting to put my thought on some similar topics in my own words. I've managed to make a complete pigs ear of my life for the last few months, so now the domestic rugby season has finished I need some new substitution activity to stop me concentrating on more important things anyway!

I guess since it was mainly the political blogs that got me interested there'll be a fair few rants (hopefully justified) in that field. I'm not sure that in the short term that new media will have the impact on the domestic political scene that some its evangelists might hope. On the other hand, the disengagement of the general public from the political process at the moment is both frightening and, on the basis much of the behaviour of our political parties, justified. Anything that can encourage 'normal' people to think again about what kind of country we want to live in has to be encouraged. I'm not going to set out my own views upfront, I don't feel I fit into any one box so I'll let the postings do the talking on that.

The blog title comes mainly from the political side. I'm not keen to start chucking around terms like 'Police State' because it belittles what those how lived or live in real police states experienced. That said, I feel that the broad thrust of politics of all flavours in Europe for the last twenty years has been, intentionally or otherwise, to limit the political colours we can choose to a series of pretty similar looking, standardised palettes. At the same time the outcomes of political process become ever more intrusive on our lives. Perhaps it used to be most noticeable at the local and European level, but increasingly the national scene and the behaviour of our representatives is becoming more akin to the arrogant managerialism of the EU. The less people think a change can me made, the more they will either give up and disengage completely or worse still be drawn to more extreme options. We can see this happening in real time in the United Kingdom today; it disheartens me more than words can say.

As I mentioned above, the domestic rugby union season has drawn to a close and I'm trying to pretend the upcoming England tour to South Africa is not actually happening. Similarly, the overpaid prima donnas of the round ball game will be soon hanging up their boots for the summer and I don't give a fuck about their or their wives brainless tabloid antics. Cricket....snore. Given all of this I don't think there will be much of a sports section until the autumn, barring some half-witted politicking by Baron or Cardinal Richelieu-Andrews at the RFU.

I work in IT, but that is the last thing that will appear here. It's dull enough even if you don't work in it all day. On the other hand, by degree I'm a scientist and you might see something there in response to events. It might me on the substance of the debate if I actually know anything about it (I've Genetically Modified a few Organisms in my time) or the way it is being conducted if I don't (Al Gore v. Climate Change Denial).

There's probably going to be a bit of local gossip to amuse a collection of friends, but I'll try to do it in a way that stops it just being clutter to those who don't know the people involved. Names will be changed to protect the innocent, and guilty.

I don't want to be too negative, but beyond footballers, socialists and anti-democratic europhiles there will be others who will probably attract the odd bit of ire, including but not limited to:

  • Climate change zealots

  • Animal libber's

  • Anti-GM tossers

  • The BBC

  • Bigotry of all kinds...

  • ...Including anti- Straight/White/Male/American/Scottish etc. bigotry

  • Reality TV

  • Alcopop drinkers

  • Religion and militant atheists

  • Esperanto militants on EU websites

  • Vegetarians and teetotalers

  • A couple of twats who bore for England down at the local

There will be a few quotations along the way. I know it's a bit passe, qotd having been there since the birth of the Internet, but I'm always impressed by the eloquence with which some people can express the same thoughts I have. I'm one of those people who could never do the 'About Me' essay in English lessons at school, so what's at the top left of the screen is all the biography there is ever going to be. Hopefully the quotations might say something about where I'm coming from to balance up some of the worse rantings!

I don't quite know all the etiquette of the blogosphere but there are a few rules I'm going to try to stick to, apologies if I accidentally break some of them from time to time:

  • No backdating of posts

  • All sources acknowledged at least by a link to the source material

  • Only typos and bad English will be changed after posting, everything substantive will go in as addenda/errata

  • Any complaints...just let me know...I'm a reasonable enough person and I'm not out to upset anyone outside the public sphere

  • There are a few home-grown bits of JavaScript, sorry for any cross browser issues but I only really know the IE DOM

  • Yes I do swear, I'm a northerner, it's what we do and at least its fuck or at worst fook, not feck

The first three do not apply to this post.

If you've stopped by, thanks, and I hope you found something that interested or outraged you.