azurelunatic: Scissors cutting film. NaNoWriMo 2004 (Home Movies from the Cutting-Room Floor)
[personal profile] azurelunatic
I was Feeling Not Quite The Thing into the afternoon, and fell over for a nap sufficiently substantial that I had nearly no time to run the errands I'd planned to. I was going to meet up with Guide Dog Aunt for a movie this evening. (Wednesdays are no good: she has Boat that night. Boat is her granddog. Boat has enough German Shepherd to be a terror.)

I started having what may have been hot flashes over the weekend. Small ones. (Mumble) did the responsible-and-helpful thing (genuinely) and poked me to poke the doctor's office about it. I emailed. (They called me at fuck o'clock on Monday morning, left a voicemail saying I should call them, but just in case because I'd said that the phone was "hard" -- I'd said that the phone was the worst way for contact, in fact -- that they'd email too.) Their return email said that I should take my temperature twice a day, and if anything hit above 100F, to take my temperature an hour later, and call them immediately if it went over that.


Also, since I haven't had a child living with me in ... ages, I did not in fact have a functional thermometer.

It turns out that iPods do not like playlists with All The Stuff on it. And that turning off podcast syncing will in fact empty the iPod of all podcasts. This means that re-syncing takes about an hour, if it's the old-style thing and you've got about 5-6 gigs of audio to get back on the thing.

So just as my aunt was finding a parking space, I rolled in with my new thermometer and some cold groceries to put away. We then zipped off to the library to find some movies of mutual interest.

On the way, I gave her the update on the Latest Information On My Social Life. This included a super awkward conversation about a delicate topic, lasting basically until we got through the library doors, and commencing again once we left. *facepalm* Family, gentlefolks. Honesty can be helpful. Honesty can also be utterly embarrassing.

I had not, in fact, seen Pride and Prejudice, though I have certainly read the book. Guide Dog Aunt thinks Matthew Macfadyen resembles a young Dylan Moran, and I can see the resemblance.

IRC on the iPad, and a keyboard in my pocket, kept me moderately chatty with the usual suspect(s) during quieter moments of the movie.

The house is in moderate chaos. The solar panels are on the roof; tomorrow's the day when all the electricity gets shut off in order to hook those in. (I registered a charger for some electric vehicle or other. I think Woodworking Uncle may have a new toy.) Guide Dog Aunt's kitchen is getting renovated hardcore. There are boxed-up appliances shoved in the parlor, and the two big chairs have been replaced by something a little less murderous on the back.

As I headed out, I saw a familiar black-and-white striped rump and tail disappearing under the porch. My aunt had thought that the underside of the house had been rendered sufficiently inaccessible to skunk-kind. Apparently not. And she's got Boat (the shepherd with no chill) tomorrow. Fortunately she's got about a gallon of skunk-wash on hand...

Next doctor's appointment is Tuesday morning, in Oakland. [personal profile] quartzpebble plans to meet me there, for backup.

Don’t we all?

Aug. 31st, 2016 06:00 am
[syndicated profile] tim_worstall_feed

Posted by Tim Worstall

France Prime minister ‘prefers naked breasts to headscarf’

I’m entirely sure that the most virulent jihadi agrees, given the lengths they go to gain access to eight of them.

It’s really, really,, not a fine

Aug. 31st, 2016 05:58 am
[syndicated profile] tim_worstall_feed

Posted by Tim Worstall

Downing Street said it would “welcome” Apple to the UK after the European Commission took the extraordinary step of hitting the company with an £11billion fine.

Although given the contortions they made to get there perhaps it is.

Quite so Mr Flynn, this should happen

Aug. 31st, 2016 05:43 am
[syndicated profile] tim_worstall_feed

Posted by Tim Worstall

Parliamentary expenses should be scrapped and MPs trusted with an allowance because the current procedure is a time consuming “unnecessary chore”, one of Jeremy Corbyn’s most senior allies has said.

Paul Flynn, the shadow leader of the House of Commons, who responds for Labour on expenses, said that the parliamentary watchdog was a “bureaucratic ornament” which should be scrapped and MPs sent automatic payments without having to submit expense claims.

Because we should be able to expect those who rule us not to take the piss.

However, given past experience about the sort of scumbag maggots who actually get elected, this doesn’t work, does it?

(no subject)

Aug. 30th, 2016 09:49 pm
cupcake_goth: (Default)
[personal profile] cupcake_goth

Halloween Tarot: King of Pumpkins (King of Pentacles)

Vintage Wisdom Oracle: Gratitude

current reading

Aug. 30th, 2016 07:35 pm
yhlee: Pokemon: Ninetales (nine-tailed fox) (Pokemon Ninetales)
[personal profile] yhlee
I swear I am trying not to slack, but I have been skipping from book to book as the mood takes me so I can't guarantee fast completion of any particular book. I am probably likeliest to finish The Captive Prince first.

- Muhammad Aurangzeb Ahmad, ed. Islamicates Vol. 1 (Anthology of Islamic-culture sf, free ebook in various formats, including epub, mobi, and PDF.)
- Suzanne Collins. The Hunger Games.
- John Crowley. Little, Big.
- Geraldine Harris. Prince of the Godborn.
- C.S. Pacat. The Captive Prince.
- Yoshiki Tanaka. Legend of the Galactic Heroes: Dawn.

- Tracy Fullerton. Game Design Workshop.
- Alexander Laban Hinter. Why Did They Kill?: Cambodia in the Shadow of Genocide.
- Josh Lanyon. Man, Oh Man: Writing Quality M/M Fiction.
- Donald Maass. Writing 21st Century Fiction.
- Tim Marshall. Prisoners of Geography.
- Mary Roach. Grunt.
- Harold Speed. The Practice and Science of Drawing.
- 21 Draw. Illustrator's Guidebook.
[syndicated profile] jon_worth_feed

Posted by Jon

2017 is election year in France. Le Pen is stealing votes from the traditional republican right and Nicolas Sarkozy, never one to shy away from stealing ideas to the right of him, thinks that he’s on to something to promise to tear up the Le Touquet agreement between the UK and France and that this would mean the Calais ‘Jungle’ camp would then have to move to the UK. The Le Touquet agreement is part of the system of juxtaposed border controls between France and the UK. Cazeneuve, Hollande’s interior minister, is also not opposed to the idea apparently. The Brexit vote of course the French cover for floating these ideas. The UK government, The Guardian reports, is standing firm opposing Sarko’s plan.

First of all, can the French actually tear up the Le Touquet agreement or, to give it the full name, Treaty between the Government of the United Kingdom and the Government of the French Republic concerning the implementation of frontier controls at sea ports of both countries on the Channel and North Sea. The answer – as given in Article 25 of the text (PDF here, see page 12 of 13), is yes, if 2 years of notification is given – thanks @SteveLawrence_ for the reference.

But then comes the more complicated issue. Why would France want to terminate the agreement? And would it even work?

Here we need to take a step back.

Why is the ‘Jungle’ camp at Calais and not, for example, at Cherbourg or Le Havre (other French ports that have sailings to the UK) or indeed in another EU country? There is a ferry route from Hoek Van Holland to Harwich, and one from Sandander in Spain to Portsmouth – why have the refugees not moved there? No continental European ports other than Calais is covered by the Le Touquet agreement. As the refugee flows across Europe in the summer of 2015 showed, refugees are enterprising and mobile, and shifted themselves en masse to the routes of least resistance.

But in Calais they are staying put. That is because the Le Touquet agreement actually makes not a blind bit of difference to the plight of these refugees.

It works like this. France is in the Schengen system, and Schengen has exit as well as entry controls. France, like the rest of the EU, is subject to the Dublin Regulation that stipulates that a refugee must make an asylum application on the territory of the Member State on which they find themselves.

So if a refugee walks up to the French exit border control at say, Cherbourg, or at Calais, the result is going to be the same – he or she is going to taken into the French asylum system as a result of the Dublin Regulation, and will not even get out of France. Whether the UK border control is on the French side of the channel (as it is for Calais-Dover), or on the UK side (as it is for Cherbourg-Portsmouth) makes no difference whatsoever. The refugee is not even going to be able to even get to the UK border control – if the French are doing their exit controls in compliance with EU law.

So could the French turn a blind eye? For the moment no, they could not. Because if they did they would be in contravention of the Schengen Borders Code on how exit checks are done, and also in contravention of the Dublin Regulation. So the European Commission (probably with information supplied by the UK) could take France to the European Court of Justice, and France would lose.

Now of course I would not put it past Sarkozy to try some populist manoeuvre to win a few votes, but tearing up Le Touquet is not possible before the 2017 election anyway (due to the two year period), and would not – legally – work afterwards anyway, at least while the UK remains legally within the EU. All of that could of course change on the day the UK legally leaves the EU (if that does ever happen) as some deal on UK access to the Schengen zone would have to be brokered. But for now the Le Touquet agreement ought to be safe because ending it won’t end the ‘Jungle’.

Which leads us to two further issues. Why did the Le Touquet agreement make any sense in the first place? The answer to that was because the juxtaposed controls system started with regard to the Channel Tunnel and allowing speedy exit from the tunnel on either side (as explained here), and the Le Touquet agreement that applies to ferries then followed. The second issue then is why is the ‘Jungle’ in Calais? Actually for the very same reason – Dover/Folkestone – Calais is by far the most economically significant crossing from the UK to continental Europe, and just as that necessitated a system to speed up the passage of legitimate traffic, so if you are a refugee and you want to stow yourself in the back of a lorry and try to evade detection, you go to the border with the largest amount of freight traffic. Calais.

So that’s why the camp is not moving, will not for the foreseeable future, and why Sarkozy threatening to tear it up makes no sense. It would only make things slower at the border, and that makes no sense for legitimate economic trade.

[syndicated profile] uk_polling_report_feed

Posted by Anthony Wells

Tomorrow’s Times has a new YouGov poll of the Labour leadership electorate (party members from before the cut-off date, trade union affiliates and £25 registered supporters) showing Jeremy Corbyn with a robust lead over Owen Smith. Topline voting intentions excluding don’t knows are Corbyn 62%, Smith 38%. 8% of voters say don’t know.

Jeremy Corbyn leads convincingly in all three parts of the electorate: among party members he is ahead by 57% to 43%, among trade union affiliates he is ahead 62% to 38%, among registered supporters he is ahead by a daunting 74% to 26%. If the numbers are broken down by length of membership Owen Smith actually leads among those who were members before the last general election, but they are swamped by the influx of newer members who overwhelmingly back Jeremy Corbyn.

The poll was conducted over the weekend, so after Labour members will have started to vote. The actual contest still has three weeks to go, but with people already voting and that sort of lead to make up Owen Smith’s chances do not look good.

Looking to the future, 39% of the selectorate (and 35% of full party members) think it is likely the party will split after the election. 45% of party members who support Owen Smith say that if some MPs opposed to Corbyn were to leave and form a new party they would follow them (29% of Smith supporters say they are likely to leave the party if Corbyn wins anyway… though I’m always a little wary of questions like that, it’s easier to threaten to leave than to actually do it)

YouGov also asked about mandatory re-selection. Party members are divided right down the middle – 46% of full members think MPs should normally have the right to stand again without a full selection, 45% of members think that MPs should face a full reselection before every election. The split is very much along the Smith-Corbyn divide – 69% of Corbyn supporters are in favour of reselections, 77% of Smith supporters are opposed.

Full tabs are here.

[syndicated profile] markpack2_feed

Posted by Mark Pack

Writing for PolitcsHome, Lib Dem MP Mark Williams says:

Omran Daqneesh is not the most relatable of names to Western media. It is hard to pronounce and its origins are foreign. However, on August 17th Omran Daqneesh’s face became a symbol of suffering and lost innocence in perhaps the world’s most terrible current conflict, the civil war in Syria. Instead of an unrelatable name, media outlets and regular people the world over saw a face of a small boy, estimated at 5 years old, covered in blood and dust after an air strike…

It is Hassan Rouhani’s Iran that has helped the Assad regime in Syria to target civilians like Omran and is directly responsible for the scenes of devastation that Omran’s photo gave a small glimpse of. It is the same regime, carried out the systematic slaughter of approximately 30,000 political prisoners in 1988…

In 1988 there was no social media, no developed internet infrastructure to share devastating images like Omran’s and there was no outcry. To lawmakers in Washington DC, across Europe and everywhere in between, those innocent men, women and pregnant mothers and scared fathers were numbers, headlines and “not our problem.” Today, history is repeating itself in Syria under the same regime, those same murderers who oversaw the slaughter of 30,000 innocents in Iran are condemning Syrians, Iraqis and many others who do not believe in their radical ideology to the same fate – history is repeating itself and we cannot again let ourselves to look the other way.

Critics will argue that this Iran is different, that they have abandoned nuclear activities and that change does not come overnight. According to them we will have to “wait and see.” Yet we have waited decades since the 1988 massacre and after that long wait, we have only seen those murderers and extremists who perpetrated the slaughter get promotions…

But, Omran and others like him, remind us not to forget our humanity. If we do not stand up for Omran and others like him, who will be there to stand up for us when fundamentalist and terrorists attack us? We can never allow ourselves to forget our humanity.

It is high time to take action. Our policies toward Iran must change to focus on Tehran’s human rights abuses and destructive intervention in the region. We should stand with the Iranian regime’s victims in their quest for justice.

[syndicated profile] political_betting_feed

Posted by TSE

Fitbit goal check

Aug. 30th, 2016 10:00 pm
rmc28: Rachel standing in front of the entrance to the London Eye pier (Default)
[personal profile] rmc28
(Because I know I'm not meeting any of my goals any time soon, but if I take the time to look up the earliest possible date I could, it stops my brain running in circles and me obsessively checking the fitbit history.)
numbers )

I am reaching feeling-overstretched again, and I really need to buckle down and be a study-hermit. (Exam in 13 days, EMA for a different course due in the same day, new course books arriving any minute for the officially-starting-1st-October courses.) I've had three migraines in 16 days, and it's a mixture of overdoing things, struggling in the summer heat, and the perennial favourite of Not Getting Enough Sleep.

The fitbit number I am paying most attention to at the moment is the hours of sleep. It's still too low.

jimhines: (Snoopy Writing)
[personal profile] jimhines

Basically, it’s the culture, attitudes, comments, and actions that enable sexual assault. Whether it’s victim-blaming, perpetuation of rape myths, attacking survivors, or–

Oh, wait. I have a better idea. Let me show you some of the comments I’ve seen since my article about sexual harassment in SF/F was published over at io9 yesterday.

Content warning for slurs and other garbage.

Read the rest of this entry » )

Mirrored from Jim C. Hines.

Chapter 50: And Last

Aug. 30th, 2016 08:33 pm
rmc28: Photo of cover of Penguin edition of Watership Down, by Richard Adams (watership)
[personal profile] rmc28
It was a fine, clear evening in mid-October, about six weeks later.

[This post is part of my Watership Down read through. You are welcome to join in at any time; please read my introduction post first.]

Fannish September!

Aug. 30th, 2016 08:28 pm
happydork: A graph-theoretic tree in the shape of a dog, with the caption "Tree (with bark)" (Default)
[personal profile] happydork
The rise of imzy has, of course, made me feel like putting a bunch of fannish content up on my DW/LJ! Posting every day over September sounds really a lot more like hard work than I can manage, but I'm going to angle for every few days. I plan to do vid recs, fic recs, meta recs, a little bit of my own wittering, and at least one picspam.

Any requests? Prompts for fannish wittering or types of recs? Thoughts about the fannish content you miss most on DW/LJ?
[syndicated profile] political_betting_feed

Posted by TSE


Whatever the rights and wrongs of this story, perceptions can sometimes matter more than the facts. Either Jeremy Corbyn and his team didn’t know about Richard Barbook’s background or they didn’t care about it, either option is pretty damning about the political nous of Jeremy Corbyn and his advisers.



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Mat Bowles

October 2015


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I'm the Chair of the Brighouse branch of the Liberal Democrats & the membership secretary for Calderdale Lib Dems and run the web campaign for the local candidates. I have a job, a stepdaughter and a life.

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