Jun 27 2013

[Ramble] Loneliness: Not Just a Problem for Old People

Below is the text of an email I sent to BBC Breakfast News this morning having seen their piece on loneliness.


Good morning,


I have been enjoying your piece about loneliness and I fully admit that I haven’t been watching all of it. Still, the focus seems to be so much on the elderly that I think perhaps you are overlooking people like me (I’m 27). I moved last year (June 2012) to Derbyshire having fallen out with my Dad, whom I was living with, on the Isle of Wight. I came up to Derbyshire to my Mum, because without the job I’d been doing with my Dad I had no other option that signing on to housing benefit as well as jobseeker’s and I didn’t see that as necessary.

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Jun 25 2013

[Fiction] Two Against Many

The plan had worked so far. But the question was always: how far could you stay ahead? Life wasn’t easy when you spent it on the road all day every day. Tim was used to it, but that didn’t make it easy. He knew how the game worked better than most but playing it well was another matter entirely. They were everywhere, and even with Ed doing his best to expose the conspiracy, the two of them had very little room for error.

He moved through the crowded plaza briskly, you didn’t want to be seen running – that was of course very noticeable… but ambling was no good either. There was a balance to be found in your pace, something that fit in with the image of a busy young professional, one who didn’t want to arrive at his next meeting out of breath but also couldn’t be late. He could see the hotel up ahead, not far to go now and he’d be off the streets. That didn’t mean he’d be safe though, just a little less vulnerable. Hopefully Ed would have made some progress with the Ecuadorians and they could be on the move soon, if not then they’d have to move out of the city for a while.

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Jun 23 2013

[Ramble] Corruption, Spying and Edward Snowden…

My friend Gareth made a point on facebook regarding Ali Dizaei in connection with the current debate about Edward Snowden. From the context I presume his point was that the man is/was corrupt and that he is an example of a law enforcement officer whom we cannot trust.

My counter-argument and therefore the purpose for this blog post is that the ‘system’ worked. The man is now in jail. And indeed lost an appeal relatively recently.


Closing Quote Mark

Opening Quote Mark

From BBC News:

Opposing the appeal, Peter Wright QC, for the Crown, told the court:

“There was no error by the judge in the exercise he undertook. The decision was not wrong in law.”

(Formatting added by me).


I would argue that in any functioning society the rule of law is important (not being an anarchist personally), therefore although clearly there is a concern about spying and law-breaking, that is why we have a legal system. Corruption in the legal system is, I would say, an incredibly dangerous thing. I am, as yet, unaware of any major cases of that though.

As for Edward Snowden, in simple terms he broke the law, as far as I can make out. There is something rather amusingly ironic about an organised system of spies (the NSA) wanting to arrest somebody for spying… Although of course it is technically the US Justice Department and not the NSA who are seeking his extradition and trial.

Whether or not he was right to do what he did is a matter to be discussed, and perhaps the very nature of laws about spying *should* be reviewed in terms of the laws of our societies. I think that is almost certainly beyond the scope of this piece though which I now conclude.

For the curious, this started out as a reply to Gareth on facebook and turned into a longer item so I posted it here instead.

Jul 27 2010

What’s More Original Than “Hello World?”

Answers on a virtual postcard to the e-mail listed under Contact page…

In the absence of an immediate answer though: Hello World! This is the obligatory first post and probably has already served as a good indication of my slightly wacky style which I hope is at least a little amusing to some but I realise is probably just annoying… it’s my site so you just have to live with it.

Apart from saying hello world and asking for something better to say, I can’t think of a great deal that needs putting here so rather than ramble on I’ll just reiterate that I really would like to hear everyone’s response to the title question of this post… I guess you could comment on the post, but by asking for e-mails I get to make you navigate the site at least a little.