Daily Archives: 23/04/2010

Bureaucracy Fail

So, there’s reasons why I haven’t talked any more about the process of buying a new pub. There are some things I am aching to say, and once I have signatures in the right places I’m going to have my self some fun saying them, but for the moment circumspection is still the order of the day.

I’m still buying a pub, it’s now near the south coast. It’s nicer, older, in a better location for passing and tourist trade, vastly better equipped in terms of cellar space and it has a back room I can use to start a brewery. The residential area could have been tailored to my team, and I am going to be very happy once I’m selling ales.

The best I can do on detail is that I’ll be within the catchment to use Dark Star as my regular brewer; I shall be making a feature of British-brewed, craft lagers, and we will be making a feature of a locally-sourced, seasonal food offering. I’m working my ass off, and something interesting is happening in politics, so my opportunities to blog are limited but from after tomorrow I’m no longer running the Pembury Tavern, so there should be some at least. Evening all.


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State of the Nation

[ Editor’s note: this originally appeared in a slightly shorter form as a comment on Though Cowards Flinch. ]

Disclaimer: I am not associated with the LibDems. They are too much Democrat, not enough Liberal for me to join them. However, I’m an historian by training, and learned my politics in the third world, so I can spot a bankrupt political oligarchy sustained by the vested interests of a corrupt plutocracy and a deliberately fraudulent media as well as the man on the Clapham omnibus. And I’ve been saying so on the internet since a hell of a long time before #leadersdebate.

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Independence Day

The Sun newspaper failed to publish a YouGov poll showing that voters fear a Liberal Democrat government less than a Conservative or Labour one. […] (The Liberal Democrats have) taken comfort from YouGov’s unpublished finding that more voters would be delighted by the formation of a Liberal Democrat government (29 per cent), than by a Tory government (25 per cent) or a Labour one (18 per cent).

Only 21 per cent would be dismayed if a Liberal Democrat administration were formed, compared to 45 per cent for the Tories and 51 per cent for Labour.

In the 1990s I read the Indy as much as I read any other paper. They seemed to me to be quite independent, and I approved. I was also 16. It became apparent during the course of Back to Basics that the Indy was a fundamentally right-wing paper which talked a very good game but couldn’t back it up with impartiality.

But Simon Kelner’s slavering hacks have, over the last couple of days, performed so far out of that kennel that I might well have to buy a subscription for my new pub. There’s been a series of indications that the Indy alone of the papers usually considered as Cameron’s Crew might be thinking about regaining some honour in journalism. Then, as far as we can tell, James Murdoch decided to take a hand. The replying salvo is a vigorous expose of the counter-democratic and unethical practices of the Murdoch empire.

We all saw the delightfully inept attempt at GOP-style campaigning from the Murdoch empire and their running dogs at CCHQ. We all saw them trot out a different line from the YouGov attack poll in each paper, thus making it clear that it was a co-ordinated but unaimed assault with a single guiding will. Nick Robinson has confirmed that it was the Tories who orchestrated the media bombing campaign, which makes it pretty clear that it was also the Tories who put the attack poll in the field, using YouGov and Murdoch to do it.

Murdoch Loses Britain was a trending topic on twitter tonight. Too fucking right.

The Independent is causing feelings of respect and affection in me. I hope they can keep up the good work. Signs are good: Andrew Grice includes at the bottom of his article a step-by-step deconstruction of each headline in the smear campaign, with the true story summarised alongside. John Q.’s hat is duly tipped to a rare independent voice in the British print media.

Edit: 1357 The Indy have reprised their “Murdoch won’t decide this election” wrap-around, which precipitated this, with another, saying “Neither will Lebvedev”. Someone’s been eating his Wheaties.


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I changed my mind

About going to bed. The BBC have just given me another look at the debate over the nuclear deterrant. And it sparked a thought.

First, a position statement; having said #iagreewithnick quite a lot lately, it’s interesting to discover I disagree with him on both nuclear questions. I suspect that nuclear power is going to play a part in bridging the energy gap, while we recover from 30 years of crass idiocy in ignoring the sustainability of our economy. I do not believe in the utility of nuclear weapons inside a biosphere. Nick disagrees with me on both counts. Interesting.

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