I was going to write a post about David Cameron’s and Claire Perry’s War on Porn… but why bother when someone already made this great video? ENJOY! Oh, and please sign the petition against Internet censorship.
Britain ground to a halt today as crowds of ordinary people thronged the streets to say goodbye to a dear leader, Margaret Thatcher. Thatcher, who single-handedly killed Stalin as well as ending child poverty here at home, was probably the most loved Briton of the 20th century, even surpassing the popularity of Winston Churchill.
Alf Grimes, a former coal miner from South Yorkshire, couldn’t stop the tears from rolling down his grubby face. “It were ‘orrible in t’ pit”, he sobbed. “Only Maggie understood, and put an end to our suffering”.
A delegation of West Indians from South London also turned up and sang Negro spirituals as the procession passed. Winston Green, one of their number, reminisced: “I was only a teenager then”, he said, “and Maggie made sure we went home and did our homework, by sending in the police to swamp the streets at sunset. Yes, the truncheon blows hurt, and I still experience the occasional headache, but if it wasn’t for her, I wouldn’t be the CEO of a major international corporation now.” (At least I think that’s what he said – his accent was a bit strong).
But a picture tells a thousand words. Our correspondents in London and Leeds submitted the photos below which really capture the raw emotion of the day. Rarely has the British public experienced such unity. Maggie may be gone, but as these images show, she will never be forgotten.
Debating climate change deniers is generally about as useful as debating young-Earth creationists. They have no evidence on their side, but that doesn’t seem to worry them in the slightest. Given that these people managed to go through school without picking up even a modicum of scientific theory, it seems pointless trying to lecture them.
So instead, this is an invitation to climate change deniers to make their case right here. Here are 10 questions for deniers to answer in the comments section of this blog. Feel free to answer any or all of the questions below. The best answers (assuming there are any) will be published in a follow-up post, fully credited and fairly presented.
Please note that comments should not be added in crayon.
- Picture question: Look at the picture of Lord Monckton above. Would you buy a used car from this man?
- If there is a “scientific debate” why do only 24 out of 13,950 peer-reviewed papers (that’s 0.17%) dispute man-made climate change?
- If there is “science on both sides”, why do billionaires secretly have to throw hundreds of millions of dollars into denialist propaganda?
- Why are there no climate scientists as spokesmen for the denial side? (Name one to prove this assertion wrong).
- Why does leading “denialist” spokesman Lord Monckton have to tell lies if the facts are on his side?
- Why do you not believe climate scientists about present warming, but believe them when they say the climate changed in the past?
- Who knows most about the climate? a) Climate scientists, b) Economists, c) Oil companies, d) Michele Bachmann?
- The greenhouse effect, caused by carbon dioxide, is explained by basic Physics and can be easily demonstrated in the lab. Do you still deny this even after watching the short, simple video? a) No, I admit defeat b) What’s a lab?
- Carbon dioxide has increased by 40% since the start of the Industrial Revolution. Is this a) A lot, b) Not a lot?
- Look at yourself in a mirror. Does that look like a person who can grasp scientific concepts? a) Yes, b) No, c) I can’t read – I’ve no idea how I got this far through the post.
As we approach another US Presidential election, increasing numbers of non-Americans are watching proceedings with great interest; however, the US electoral system is a strange thing, and many foreigners fail to understand its subtleties. As a non-Yank who takes a great interest in US politics, I felt I should explain US elections to those foreigners who would like to follow events in the run-up to November 6. So here is the MoronWatch quick guide to American elections.
Only Two Parties?
That’s right, the American system is carefully engineered to ensure only Democrats and Republicans have any chance of winning. To outside observers, used to multi-party democracy, this seems a little strange. America, in its usual efficient way, has optimised democracy to the bare minimum. Cuba, of course, has a one-party state. America has TWICE the number of parties that Cuba does, and is therefore twice as democratic. And what better measure of democracy could there possibly be?
To ensure no other parties have a chance, the Ds and the Rs have things sown up. For example, in the current run of presidential debates, the parties signed a legal contract promising not to debate with any other candidate, thus creating an unbreakable duopoly and excluding any possible third-party candidate from gaining any publicity. The media plays along with the game, ensuring that alternative candidates are seen as little more than cranks. And when force is needed, it’s freely used; indeed, when Green Party candidate Jill Stein tried to attend this year’s debate, she was arrested and held by New York police. Smell the democracy!
No Spending Limits?
Outsiders have a quaint idea that elections should reflect the will of the people. America is smarter than this (as are other advanced democracies such as Cuba, Zimbabwe, etc). The People, as everyone knows, are idiots and shouldn’t be allowed to make any serious decisions. Presidents should instead be chosen by the nation’s cleverest people: CEOs. Unlike many democracies, America imposes no spending restrictions, and even allows third-parties (such as corporate front groups) to run political advertising. The election result is thus a simple matter of money.
So corporations fund the campaigns and the campaign that spends the most money wins. Simple! Which party do the corporations prefer? Both of them! Since both parties represent corporate interests, it doesn’t really matter to corporations which one is elected. They fund both parties to make sure that they, rather than any accountable body, control the system. If one of the parties suddenly questioned the rights of corporations to own and run US society, that party would lose its funding and the other one would win. The system is balanced and fair (unless you’re some kind of commie who believes in “one person, one vote” type stuff).
No Progressive Party?
Real democracies represent all parts of the political spectrum, but that can be messy, and result in the people actually choosing their government; so the enlightened system in America (like that in Cuba) ensures this doesn’t happen. Most societies split into two parts – conservatives (those who think the past was great) and progressives (those who aren’t so sure about that). So the main political parties tend to represent various flavours of these strands. America has evolved beyond this crude system; since progressives tend to be uneasy about corporate power threatening democracy, they had to be excluded from the electoral process.
Instead, Americans are offered a simpler choice: pro-corporate sane people vs pro-corporate insane people. This means that a knowledge of politics isn’t necessary for voting in America, since the parties disagree on very little anyway. Just decide whether you think raped pregnant women should be forced to carry their babies to term or not, and your choice is simple.
Make Up The Rules As You Go Along
Here’s the best thing about US elections: if the vote doesn’t go your way, it doesn’t even matter! You simply ensure the voting machines will give the right answer, people have trouble voting, and the supreme court is packed with your friends.
Why bother with elections at all? Why not just allow CEOs to nominate the next President at a secret meeting? Americans are proud of their semi-democratic past, and voting reminds them of the days when they actually used to have some control over national policy. Besides, the corporations who make rigged voting machines would be very upset to lose all that business. As with many African nations, which have so carefully copied America’s version of democracy, the US enjoys going through the motions of voting, secure in the knowledge that the rich people who own everything will still be in power after election day.
So Does Voting Make Any Difference?
Yes. Despite the fact that both parties are largely funded by the same interests, small changes of direction can make a big difference. The Republican party has been taken over by people who will happily start a nuclear war, since they believe God’s on their side and they’re guaranteed a spot in heaven whatever happens. And the difference between “nuclear war” and “no nuclear war” is pretty significant. Romney has signalled a more aggressive attitude towards Russia, China and Iran if he’s elected, which is bad news for global stability and the economy, but good news for the oil and weapons companies that back him.
So here we go again: through some joke of history, the entire future of global humanity rests on the whims of a handful of badly-informed morons in a handful of swing states. If there is a god, he has a wicked sense of humour.
It’s come to pretty much everyone’s attention that the world’s got a little more hostile and fucked-up over the past decade. Morons have been on the march, and chaos has resulted.
Which is a shame, because the world’s a more fun place for everyone when people aren’t bombing each other. I’ve devoted many years to studying the angry, violent, gun-loving, war-loving moron: What makes him tick? What are his likes and dislikes? How angry is he, at whom, and why? The remarkable result of this study is: morons (and moronesses) seriously need to get laid more.
It’s very hard to track exactly how much sex people are having, but the correlation between sexual hang-ups and conservative attitudes seems to be undeniable. Whether it’s Republicans with a curious fascination for gay sex, Hindus who think it’s immoral to celebrate Valentine’s Day or Iranian morality police disallowing the sale of Barbie dolls, few people can doubt the close link between sexual “morality” and moronic attitudes in general.
A sex-counsellor friend tells me that sexual repression, rather than suppressing the sexual appetite, leads to hypersexuality. Human beings can no more abstain from sex without sustaining mental harm than we can abstain from food and remain healthy.
People of the world: I ask you to make a great sacrifice on behalf of the future generations. It is all of our responsibilities to help relieve the uptightness so prevalent throughout the world.
To my American friends: we’d all be really grateful if you’d shag a Republican. Or three. Maybe they’ll think twice before bombing Iran. OK, I know they’re not always the nicest looking creatures, but hey – what’s the alternative?
And this isn’t just an American issue – global problems need local solutions. Ordinary Palestinians trying to scrape a living on the Gaza Strip should consider fellating their local Hamas official. And Indians, why do you think one of your main political parties is called the BJP? Secular Israelis: those Zionist settlers will probably insist on grasping their AK47s throughout. Just make sure the safety is on.
People of the world, undress! You have nothing to lose but your hang-ups.
In further pursuit of my ambition to work for the BBC and the Sun, I submit the following kill list for public debate:
- Jeremy Clarkson
- Jeremy Kyle
- Prince Harry
- Dave Camoron
- Margaret Thatcher
- George Osborne
- Nadine Dorries
- John Gaunt
- Melanie Philips
- Nigel Farage
- This is a joke
- I apologise anyway
- Can someone at least shoot Jeremy Kyle though?
- That was a joke too
- Please buy my DVD
Morons were naturally excited when news leaked of an alleged Iranian plot to assassinate the Saudi ambassador in the US a little over a week ago. The rest of us were a little more suspicious, given America’s long history of interference in Iran. Iran’s last democratic government was overthrown in a CIA-backed plot in 1953; the murderous Shah, America’s puppet leader, was overthrown in the 1979 Iranian revolution, and the US has been quite openly trying to destabilise the government ever since. They encouraged Saddam Hussein to attack Iran, even providing him with chemical weapons (yes, those WMDs), resulting in a long and bloody war during the 1980s.
American sabre-rattling has long helped Iran’s moronic leader Ahmadinejad stay in power by cultivating a climate of fear within the country. And the US has been desperately trying, and failing, to find hard evidence of a nuclear weapons programme for several years now. America’s two great Middle Eastern allies, Israel and Saudi Arabia, both resent Iran’s influence in the region; and of course, the Iranians have vast oil reserves, second only to Saudi Arabia and Venezuela. In short, America would do anything to find an excuse to attack Iran.
So an apparent assassination plot on US soil would seem like the ideal opportunity – and America’s moron leaders leapt into action with both Hillary Clinton and Joe Biden immediately trying to pin blame on the Iranian leadership. Unfortunately for the war-and-oil brigade, the plot was laughably amateurish, and experts quickly poured cold water on the allegations. The day the story broke, Channel 4 News in the UK diplomatically but effectively dismissed the US/Saudi allegations as fantasy.
Having watched this charade for a long time, I’ve started to feel sorry for US leaders; rather than convince the world of an Iranian plot, they’ve just made themselves look inept. So here’s my gift to the Obama administration: below are a number of very convincing reasons to attack Iran (at least, more convincing than the pathetic efforts to date). Feel free to use one or all of them. A small fee of $1,000,000 would be appreciated, payable on usage.
Reasons to attack Iran:
- We’re done in Libya now.
- They dissed Obama’s mother.
- They were responsible for 9/11.
- They were responsible for Pearl Harbour.
They don’t allow abortion or gay marriage.(Editor’s note – that’s not gonna work)
- They have WMDs.
- Ahmadinejad created the sub-prime mortgage fiasco.
- Ahmadinejad has scary eyes.
They have plenty of oil.(Editor’s note: too honest)
- Jesus wants us to.
- Because we can.
- It’s full of Muslims.
Because we already run most other Middle Eastern countries, so we’d might as well grab the whole set. It’ll win Obama the moron vote. Because Israel said so. We spent $trillions on weaponry, and if we don’t use it the taxpayer might wonder why. Avoid unleashing thousands of mentally-scarred soldiers on America’s cities.
- It’s the latest hub of global jihad.
- They don’t even speak proper Arabic. They speak Iranianish or something.
- Oh come on, they’re brown and evil – what other reason do you need?
I’ve ended up on quite a few Twitter lists, and most are very flattering. But the list entries I most enjoy being on are the moronic ones – these bring a smile to my face. Below are genuine lists that people actually took the time to create and add me to. For which I’m truly grateful.
The bio of a Twitter user is important: in a mere 140 characters, a person must describe themselves and their beliefs in an informative (and hopefully entertaining) way. This applies to morons as much as to everyone else. In such a small space, how do you demonstrate the lack of intelligence, knowledge and ability for independent thought that will attract other morons to follow you?
I’ve scoured the bios of Twitter morons in order to create a library of essential moron bio extracts, which I present below. Every phrase here was a genuine copy-and-paste. I’ll publish additions to this list from time to time, ensuring it stays current (for example, if Sarah Palin becomes President and nukes Malta by accident, you may choose to add “Those Maltese Islamofascists had it coming”). If you’re a moron, please feel free to use this valuable, royalty-free resource. A credit would be nice.
- 3 times mobilized retired US Army Res. Major– If you’ve been in the military, say so! Morons need to know this stuff.
- Our land isn’t Arab land – A Zionist essential.
- The LORD also shall roar out of Zion … and the heavens and the earth shall shake! Joel 3:16 – Bible verses are always appreciated.
- We are taking America Back! – This may mean “Vote Republican”, though this also includes a coded message to blow up a government building if Obama is re-elected.
- …reaffirm our individual liberty, strengthen private markets, shrink the size of government – …and doesn’t see any conflict between these objectives.
- Conservative,God,Country,Sarah Palin – Concentrated moronitude.
- American Patriot – I’ve never left the country, except on that trip to Acapulco, and then I got a stomach upset and spent most of the time in the hotel bathroom.
- I exist in the shadows fighting the enemies of America – Superhero wannabe.
- British Nationalist – I blame brown people for the dull mediocrity of my life.
- America’s Founding Fathers – Simultaneously patriotic and meaningless.
- Stand Up America Now! – America has been sitting down for too long. I blame the chair lobby.
- Director of the TaxPayers’ Alliance – One of those badly named lobby groups. Should be called Keep Your Hands Off My Inherited Fortune, Poor People.
- …save America from Islamic domination– We persecuted blacks, Jews, Chinese, Japanese, hispanics, lefties and homosexuals and we’re sorry. But this time the threat’s for real, honest!
- We are a coalition of bloggers fighting Islamism with our blogposts – Are those like fenceposts?
- Taxpayers of the world unite! – He means High Rate Taxpayers – the rest of you can piss off.
- Conservative-Libertarian – Conservative who likes to smoke a joint from time to time.
- Newt Fan – Likes slimey sub-human animals.
- 45th Governor of the State of Wisconsin – Not widely applicable.
- Constitutionalist – Differentiate yourself from those progressive traitors who hate the Constitution.
- Liberty,Not Tyranny,Stand up & Fight 4 This Country,No Socialism,Communism,Marxism,NoObama,Take Our Country Back – If in doubt, choose them all!
Some phrases reappear so often from morons on Twitter that you’d think they’re all being fed the same ideas by the same media outlets… I often find myself responding to near-identical moronic tweets.
Here are ten of the stock concepts that reappear regularly in tweets and bios.
- Gays want to recruit our children: Of course they do… they belong to a secret organisation that plans to take over the world. Only the truly brave dare to even reveal its existence.
- Obama is a Socialist: or Marxist, Communist… an accusation always thrown by people who don’t know what any of these words mean (but it was on Fox, so it’s true).
- Muslims are taking over: Never mind that the Muslim population of Europe and North America is sub-3%; or that the majority of these aren’t devout; or that the majority of the devout ones have no interest in “taking over” anyway. Basically twenty attention-seeking nuts hold a rally in London waving placards that say “Islam for Europe”. The photos appear on Facebook. And rightwing racists copy these photos onto 1,000 blogs; and suddenly there’s a “Muslim problem”.
- Global warming is a myth: No matter that every scientific body in the world accepts man-made global warming, or that the evidence is so compelling that every serious political force in the world accepts the need for action. Or that the skeptic cause is funded by the fossil fuels business, which stands to lose billions of dollars if emissions are to be cut. What’s important is that the Republican Party has long ceased to be an independent political force, and instead is addicted to the oil dollar – and if morons like Sarah Palin and Michele Bachmann deny global warming, then it can’t be real, can it?
- Socialist-Fascist: Conservatives on both sides of the Atlantic once enthusiastically supported the rise of European fascism, and the Socialists, Communists and Anarchists were the only mass movements that actively opposed the fascists. But given the messy outcome of the fascist experiment, the right attempts to rewrite history and associate fascism with the left. Of course, nobody who’s studied the history of that era would believe such nonsense, but who needs to spend years reading when it’s all available in minutes on TV, blogs and Twitter? Fascism is on the rise once more, but because the scapegoats this time are Muslims instead of Jews, morons think it’s something altogether new.
- I want my country back: A black man was elected President of the USA.
- We can’t afford it: The Thatcher/Reagan experiment with free-market purity collapsed in 2008, leaving a tiny minority immeasurably richer and everyone else worse off. But morons haven’t noticed this carefully managed redistribution of wealth. If the super-rich say “we” can no longer afford public services, then who are we poor suckers to disagree?
- Life begins at conception: The so-called “pro-life” brigade (who perversely don’t seem to value anybody’s life except for that of “pre-born children”) are insistent that “science says” life begins from the moment of conception. While this may or may not be true, depending on your definition, it’s also completely irrelevant to the abortion debate. Although given the pathetic nature of the arguments, debate is too strong a word.
- Anti-semite: Someone who dares to criticise anything Israel might do, however illegal and barbaric. I’ve been called this many times, which given that I’m Jewish and the insult often thrown by non-Jews, I find hilarious.
- They want to destroy our freedoms: A Neocon special. “They” have an issue with your freedom to invade and bomb them for their oil. Try bringing the troops home – “they” might not hate you so much after all.