active 1 week, 2 days ago
active 1 week, 2 days ago
  • benny replied to the topic Sticks and stones… in the forum General Chat 1 week, 2 days ago

    There is a big difference between “name calling” and sensationalist attention seeking on an international stage, “dog-whistle politics” chosen explicitly to elicit support from the faction who very definitely do harbor ill intentions and xenophobic ideas.

    Even in the event that the name caller was just too bloody stupid to see that their name calling might be interpreted in any other way than “taking the Micky”, they’re still out of line. Some topics are sensitive ones and should be handled with a little diplomacy and tact when one is perched atop a very public pedestal.

    There’s a time and a place; leave the comedy to the comedians!

  • A familiar story. Firstly your “partner” (how I hate that PC term) needs to find a sport which keeps him or her fit and provides regular endorphins. Unfortunately, running is a high-stress activity and runners seem to be especially prone to injury so how about taking up cycling? Off road will suit a mountaineer because the route-finding skills and terrain are similar but road cycling gets you much much fitter and can be done from the front door and even an hour’s ride can see you coming home exhilarated and happily exhausted. Cycling is also low-stress so injuries are uncommon unless the bike is set up wrong. There are also plenty of informal clubs you can join and most bike shops have groups going out during the day and evenings. Having a small group of like-minded cycling…[Read more]

  • benny replied to the topic How to get rid of rats? in the forum General Chat 3 weeks, 1 day ago

    deal with this the mans way, no guns no chemicals, just hand to hand combat.

    When we had a rat in the kitchen (what we gunna do…?) I threw my family out, sealed the doors behind me and told them only one would emerge alive, me or the rat.

    Hard battle. Kitchen looked a bit like the tower block in Die Hard by the time it was over. The final scene involved expanding foam and a hammer drill with a 6mm bit. Not pleasant.

  • I have stayed at several Britannia Hotels, for work, for reunions and once for leisure against my better judgement. They have been without exception shoddy, some dirty and all tired and slightly grubby. Glad you fought and won.

  • Thanks for all the detailed replies!

    The monitor im currently using is a LCD with a fixed glass panel over the top of it. Even on really dull days like today using programs with mostly black backgrounds the glare is a total nightmare and looks like a mirror. Whilst working with programs with a mostly white background I do not get glare but the brightness is quite strong and causes eye strain. I tried a program called f.lux to try to try to fix the glare and eye strain, whilst it did help somewhat with the brightness problems it didn’t help at all with the glare. A side effect to this program is that it makes everything look yellow and makes your eyes tired.

    I think I will avoid computer glasses bought from random places online then.. one brand I looked at called gunnar was…[Read more]

  • Thanks for your replies guys much appreciated!

    Had a look at some different anti glare screen filters to put over the top of the screen.. and for something that is essentially just essentially a plastic sheet they are very expensive.
    I wonder if just a pair of cheap pair of polarized sunglasses from ebay or somewhere would do the trick rather than spending a lot of money as im tight on cash at the minute (self employed)?

  • I have been thinking about getting some computer glasses for when I am working on the computer. I don’t have bad vision but I have a glass screen monitor that has terrible glare, this is a real pain when coding. Not only does it give me eye strain but it is really distracting seeing my ugly mug staring back at me when I am working etc.

    Has any one used computer glasses before??? Will they protect my eyes and stop glare from my screen reflected everything back at me? Hoping they also have the added benefit of stopping wrinkles under the eye because I will no longer be squinting.
    Would be really grateful for replies as I don’t want to waste my money on a pair of it is just a fad that doesn’t even work.


  • benny posted an update 4 months, 1 week ago

    Are politicians lying to us habitually? Take the police cuts as an example. Amber Rudd says one thing and a report says another.

    I’m sure we could find more from all sides of the political spectrum. Why do they lie and how can they get away with it?

    Lets’ not quote Boris as that is just too easy.

    • If a politician states something, it’s a lie and if a report contradicts it, then the report is true?

      Perhaps there’s a grey area in between, is every report automatically the truth?

    • That seems weak to me. I know that the media are very keen to highlight dishonesty by politicians (a good thing on balance). But there doesn’t seem to be anything overtly contradictory in those statements:

      1. “A fall in police numbers is likely to have contributed to a rise in serious violent crime…”

      2. “serious violence was a ‘complex crime’ and ‘not all about police numbers’ ”

      At most it is a difference in emphasis.

    • Regarding the police cuts contributing to a rise in crime. The Chief Constable of the Met said police numbers were not to blame for the increase in violent crime. Presumably she is going on the CC’s advice. Especially as she said she hadn’t read her own department’s report. She doesn’t have to accept anything her department tells her as gospel anyway, does she.

      Regarding lying in general. Most of the time they don’t lie, you just need to understand that their pronouncements are often very carefully crafted and need to be thought about carefully.

    • All politicians will cherrypick facts and stats to suit their argument. If there is the slightest wriggle room in interpretation they will take it. If they can find one expert to support them they will quote that expert and ignore the 99 who disagree. If they can come up with some form of weasel words that misleads but which they can defend later as not actually being a downright lie but ‘a misunderstanding they will use them (cf Promise, pledge, aspiration).That’s all standard stuff.

      Others will just plain lie, bluff and bluster (am I giving too many clues here?) because they have found they can get away with it

    • As a rough rule of thumb if a politicians mouth is open and noise is coming out of it treat at at worse a down right lie, at best a manipulation of the truth to support their current agenda. Do this and you won’t go far wrong.

    • Obviously they have f*cked up massively on crime: they cut police numbers and simultaneously they gave the cops massive numbers of new bookkeeping tasks, they put lots of cops onto investigating historical cases rather than stuff that just happened, they put cops onto investigating what people said on Facebook and they stopped them doing stop and search.

      Theresa May and Amber Rudd are responsible and it’s interesting to watch them find their new scapegoat to replace the EU and ECJ: the internet companies. People get stabbed and their first reaction is to stop Amazon sending knives to the cusotmer’s house or yell at some Facebook executive. It’s blatant manipulation, same as it was with the EU. They are selecting hate figures for their aging base – the EU or Facebook -…[Read more]

    • “I’m sure we could find more from all sides of the political spectrum. Why do they lie and how can they get away with it?”

      Generally they don’t which is how they ‘get away with it’.

      They do however frequently focus on narrow interpretations minutia tangent to the question or waffle then answer a different rhetorical question or employ a number of other tricks so as to give a misleading impression on difficult topics. It’s not lying but it’s not honest either. It’s also the way the majority of competent visible politicians are ‘communicating’ at the moment which is a shame because it’s corrosive and if it persists it’ll ultimately prove dangerous for our democracy but they’re locked into a bit of an arms race it’s hard to find a way out of. That said, communication styles do…[Read more]

      • “That said, communication styles do change and what works in one time or place doesn’t elsewhere, it’ll only take for someone to achieve some electoral success communicating more straightforwardly with the public to trigger change”

        I think you’ve missed the transition: five or ten years ago successful politicians used to play the games you describe. Droning on until people forgot the question and then answering a different one and such like.

        Trump and Boris Johnson have changed that. They communicate extremely straightforwardly straight at the prejudices of their base and they don’t give a sh*t about whether what they say is true as long as it is emotionally appealing. It’s been such a successful tactic that more politicians are copying it rather than trying to compete…[Read more]

        • “Trump and Boris Johnson have changed that. They communicate extremely straightforwardly straight at the prejudices of their base and they don’t give a sh*t about whether what they say is true as long as it is emotionally appealing.”

          Trump does, it’s not entirely clear how much of that is compulsive and how much is calculated. It apparently works but that’s not surprising given his barely literate base and Praetorian guard of right wing news filters. Johnson in general still doesn’t though he’s had a few little goes at outright populist nonsense, mostly he still errs on the side carefully distorting the truth and maintaining deniability (the bus for example, everyone stood in front of it but nobody is responsible for it) rather than flagrantly making stuff up.

          “It’s been such a…[Read more]

    • Politicians lie because, in general, the public does not want to hear the truth.

      • Or they are right and the public want them to be wrong.

        “Obviously they have f*cked up massively on crime:”

        • Any politician who told the truth wouldn’t be elected. People prefer to live in ignorant bliss.

          You get the public services that you pay for.

          • “You get the public services that you pay for.”

            Most certainly not.

            Anyone selling anything puts the price up if they can, and does less for the money if they can. Hard to stop for monopolies, and more so for public services. There has to be a constant war on waste and inefficiency, since those to blame do not lose directly from it. (Also a problem with big business.) Relying on people doing the right thing is doomed to failure. It’s easy to just keep paying more year on year for the same services.

            • No amount efficiency will improve a service that wasn’t funded sufficiently in the first place and then given extra tasks. You can lean, time and motion, etc.. all you like, but sometimes you just need more resources to get a job done. That is what costs and must be paid for.

            • “No amount efficiency will improve a service” Any extra efficiency will improve a service.

              We all get lazy if there’s no consequences. Not so much about making people work harder. Administration needs to be aggressively evaluating the whole operation and evolving. If you run a business you do this to survive. Without someone constantly worrying about everything, it quickly goes very wrong. It’s not about “We did that last year, there’s no more improvements to be found” Things change all the time.

            • I’m self employed plus a partner in another and yes efficiency matters. But there comes a point where you also need to invest to improve things, be it in people, training or assets. None of this is free and often can’t simply be funded by small efficiency savings elsewhere. That doesn’t mean you don’t evaluate what you do, how you do it and why from time to time.

            • I suggest you are not disagreeing with me. But you think the government should have set the proportions of spending on different things, verses the borrowing that would be required, differently. Which I have not commented on.

            • No, I think people get the services they pay for, at the moment people expect the uk’s public services, police, NHS, education etc to be world class, whilst paying ever decreasing amounts of tax. If people expect better, they should consider the notion that these things need more funding. Borrowing to fund the annual costs of services is madness, there is essentially no return on the spending and it becomes a debt spiral. They should be funded through small progressive tax rises.

            • The borrowing is there already. We are hoping to reduce it.

              You may be right about tax increases. However there is an optimum level of tax for best productivity and eventual tax revenue. Obviously if tax was zero then there would be no tax revenue. But if everything went in tax then nobody would bother to earn, and the result would be the same. So the level of taxation tends to be set by opinions on this, rather than required expenditure, which is more likely to be a matter of taking away from somewhere else. I’m glad I’m not in government.

            • Or tax for decades has been the tool to buy votes with short termist policies. While the costs of all public services has increased. Tax can increase to a point where people still value it. Having the funds for material products versus same day doctor access, better education, better care in old age, feeling safe on the streets. ..

          • Well the thread is “are politicians lying to us ?”

            I say generally not. They are doing their best based on their beliefs. Everybody wants to spend more on public services. Some believe that if we spend more, we will reduce our ability to spend in the future.

    • I forget which interviewer it was (Paxman or Humphreys would be my guess) that said their attitude when interviewing a politician was “Why is this lying bastard lying to me?”.

      Adoption of a similar attitude could serve us all well at times.

    • Personally I think lying in Parliament should be akin to lying in court and punished the same.

      It’s not often we see blatant lies, more often massaged facts or omissions.

      The case with Amber Rudd is so clearly an untruth, and a willing deception given the “evidence” of the leaked report.

      That should at the very least mean a punishment or public chastisement if not returning to the ballot box.

    • They’re an untrustworthy bunch for sure. Particularly the government we have right now. They’ll say anything to hold on to power or to push forward their personal agendas.

    • Politicians are universally self serving liars.

      • I’m not sure they are, I think some of them want to help others and would like a fairer society.

        It’s pretty obvious that some of them are liars, rather than people who make mistakes, and they should be kicked out.

        I don’t believe MPs are any different to “real” people but they shouldn’t be lying purposefully and getting away with it.

        Boris has been caught out blatantly lying a couple of time, at least, and he shouldn’t be there.

    • Do they lie habitually? Look at the on-going tale of Barry Gardiner (no I had not heard of him either but apparently he’s Liam Fox’s shadow).

      1. He gives a private speech playing down the Good Friday Agreement and problems of an Irish border

      2. Sh1t hits the fan

      3.Instant reaction? I never said. it. Accuses critics of spouting “nonsense on stilts”

      4. Audio of speech emerges. Oh yes he did say it

      5. Second reaction. Oh bugger! Well it’s a misunderstanding then. I never meant it

      So definitely a liar. Action taken against him? Zilch

      Draw your own conclusion as to how serious an issue lying is considered to be in today’s politics

    • Are politicians lying to us habitually ?

      Well of course they are – they will always choose whichever facts (or opinions !) suit whatever point they wish to push.

      And this is not just political politicians.

      The same is true for anyone to gets on a soap-box, be they a real or self-styled leader in any aspect, be that religious, ethnic, political, gender, union, and so on.

      Never trust one view – check it out with the other views on the subject, and don’t trust google regarding facts either.

    • Remember when you were at school. The girl who grew boobs 1st became the popular girl. The boy who grew taller and stronger first became the sports hero. When it came to being chosen for things the ‘popular’ kids got chosen for everything 1st. Life was a popularity contest and those not blessed with big boobs or long legs just blended in and tried to make the best of things and followed in their wake.

      Well politics is a bit like school was. But these people haven’t got the benfit of having the biggest boobs or longest legs. They have to use something else to make them popular. That’s where lies comes into it. There was always kids at school who would say anything to be popular. Their dad was tarzan, their mum was the queen etc etc. Anything to get friends. Well guess…[Read more]

    • Here’s an article by Rory Stewart MP I think its a rather good and well considered piece.

  • I put out an oven fire with a powder extinguisher once. It turned out to be a lump of carbonised something stuck behind a baffle plate in the oven that caught fire. There was one hell of a mess everywhere from the extinguisher afterwards. I had to run out to my car to get it – this thread reminds me – neither the car nor the kitchen have an extinguisher any longer (just Chubb fire blankets). I must fix that.

  • benny posted a new activity comment 4 months, 2 weeks ago

    What you describe is an ‘earnings’ gap not a ‘pay’ gap, however don’t expect the Guardian to make such a distinction.

  • benny posted an update 4 months, 2 weeks ago

    Why are gun salesmen / customer service agents so dead? Like they have no souls… and if they did, it left their body decades ago.

    Up here in Canada all the stores, Cabelas, Wholesale Sports, Bass Pro, Independent retailers had sales on pump action shotguns. The Winchester SXP, Remington 870 and Mossberg 500 were all on sale for like $399.99 with a $25 mail in rebate. Like it was a steal for regular priced $550+. So as someone who has always shot rifles, I thought I would get myself a shotgun.

    So off I go to Bass Pro with the girlfriend. We grab a number and patiently wait…. for like 45min. I can’t even get close to the counter to see the different guns they have on display. Get yelled by agent “Step away from the counter until your number is called up”. Finally we get our…

    [Read more]

    • I don’t think it’s just gun stores! Most retail outlets are that way (Wal-Mart!) I have personally been in Wal-Mart and asked an associate where something was located, only to be told “We don’t sell that” 5 minutes later I found said item and even showed it to the associate, and got a “Oh, that’s what you meant?” so I think it has to do with the way the company treats there employees, having worked for Wal-Mart, I can say first hand that all the company cares about is the all mighty dollar, they could give a damn less about the employees (in fact they don’t…) so what you are describing sounds all to familiar with a bad company, though that alone is no excuse, but I am sure it has allot to do with it!

    • Working retail destroys the soul, this is a fact.

    • ^ Working any customer service type job does…
      I should know, I’m a tech >.< Don't know how many times I have to explain to the Stupidvisors (Supervisors) at work that their issue isn't within my power to deal with, that they need to call the help desk… then 5 minutes later they call ME for the exact same issue without even contacting the help desk…

    • It’s a result of an occupational hazard me thinks.

      They always run the risk of having their own merchandise pointed back at them.

      So they gotta be prepared for anything.

    • No, I think it’s more related to their incentive… They probably make peanuts so are not incentivized to sell more… People coming to gun store probably have already decided to buy a certain gun, and no convincing needs to be done… you dont have random walk-ins like in other stores

    • Gun smiths are worse. Brought my 460 Rowland 1911 in for some trigger work and the guy spent several minutes berating my choice of firearm and informing me what gun I should own…when I was there for repairs, needless to say I found another smith who while similar, was much nicer than him.