Showing posts from April 7, 2013

Eye witness testimony is not always reliable.

Micky Birnbaum is one of my favourite neighbours.  She and I often encounter each other as we walk our dogs.
Micky and I have seen each other on at least 1,500 occasions since I moved here in 2006.
We saw each other again this morning, alongside our mutual neighbour Betty.
Micky complimented me on my beard, saying that it suited me well, and that she was glad that I had decided to grow it.
I told Micky that I’d had a beard since 1975.  She did not believe me.
I told her a second time that my beard dated to 1975.  She replied “no”.
After my third assertion of my 38 year old beard, our mutual neighbour Betty intervened. She said “if Michael says that he has had a beard since 1975 he must be right, after all it’s on his face”.Thanks Betty!  But it’s so odd that Micky (who I have known since 2006) had never before noticed my beard, even though she had seen it for at least 1,500 times.Thereby is an illustration of the un-trustworthiness of “eye witness” testimony.(In truth I grew my beard in 197…

Of course I would love to take this journey.

But  I am glad that I cannot afford it cos I am not sure that it does much good for African countries., and I am sure that I would not like my traveling companions!

Cairo Journey 2014Home > Journeys > Cairo Journey 2014 Rovos Rail has designed the ultimate African experience for this exclusive five-star journey, which includes the incomparable luxury of the Pride of Africa and a comfortable aircraft.
This 28-day expedition will carry an elite band of intrepid adventurers through the heartlands of South Africa, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Tanzania, Uganda, the Sudan and Egypt.
The northbound route begins with a four-night train journey from Cape Town to the Victoria Falls. Thereafter, guests join our air safari and continue north to Zanzibar, after which they fly into the heartland of Tanzania with a four-day visit to the Ngorongoro Crater and the Serengeti. Continue on to Entebbe, Uganda, where guests enjoy an optional visit to the chimpanzees an…

St. James's Cambridge - great story from WGBH (Michelle Holmes is a dear friend)

Cambridge Boy Scout Troop Bucks National Trend on Gay ParticipationShare Tweet E-mail 6 Comments Print By

In the absence of anything more wondrous


Margaret Thatcher - an alternative viewpoint.

“Popular culture” says “do not speak ill of the dead”.  It’s been said for so long and for so many times that it has achieved the status of an axiom.
But of course it is “popular baloney”. Unless we wish to live in a deceitful fairy tale world in which “everyone lives happily ever after” we must tell the truth about the departed, even if this truth goes against the mainstream grain, or disturbs the smug certainties of the ruling classes.
At the heart of all the (almost world-wide) teary eyed hagiographies of Margaret Thatcher there are lies, and damnable lies - not about her character – but about her policies.
She has been described as a friend of “freedom” and liberty.
 In truth she was a friend of repressive rulers – Suharto in Indonesia; the corrupt Saudi Regime; Pinochet in Chile; Botha in South Africa; and Saddam Hussein in Iraq.

Her dearest friendships were with City of London Bankers; Business O…

The Corporate States of America

My friends and colleagues from Massachusetts days, Manny Faria and Dan Weir each posted this:

I trust that it is accurate, i.e. that FDR truly said this. (I wish that those who create "posters" such as this would include a footnote which would give the source for their quotations.)

Nonetheless,  presuming that the FDR quotation is accurate I would categorise it as a judgment on “the Corporate State”
We do well to recall that  Fascism is rooted in the ideal of the Corporate State -  a nation in  which the interests of corporations are deemed to be more important than personal and individual  freedoms.
We are there.
NOTE FOR INSTANCE that 7732 individuals have been arrested between Sep 17th  2011 and Feb 28th 2013  in their individual protests of the abuses of corporate America,.

NOTE ALSO that the Agri-business conglomerates in the USA have …