Category Archives: politics

Strike action and Westminster weasels

Some numbers.

Quorum for votes in the House of Commons, 40.
Quorum for votes in the House of Lords, 30.
So respectively votes of 21 and 16 are needed for a motion to pass, this is for legislation which affects the UK.  This is the level at which our politicians think it is ok for them to make decisions on our behalf.

2015 general election, numbers (wikipedia); Overall turnout 66.1%; Conservatives 11.3M votes, 36.9% of the cast votes (~28% of electorate)

Now compare this with what they are proposing for the unions, double standards from our elected lords and masters, yeah.  Not surprised at all.

Election Fact Check

This graphic is doing the rounds, in the interests of getting rid of the bullshit (taking a lesson from the awesome Full Fact & The Last Leg) I detest infographics which do not provide their sources so I can check for bullshit or bias.


Who From To Party Rebellions Attendance Teller
Clegg 6 May 2010 30 Mar 2015 LDem 1 vote out of 264, 0.4% 264 votes out of 1239, 21.3% 0 times
Cameron 6 May 2010 30 Mar 2015 Con 2 votes out of 202, 1.0% 202 votes out of 1239, 16.3% 0 times
Osborne 6 May 2010 30 Mar 2015 Con 8 votes out of 318, 2.5% 318 votes out of 1239, 25.7% 0 times
May 6 May 2010 30 Mar 2015 Con 6 votes out of 597, 1.0% 597 votes out of 1239, 48.2% 0 times

Based on the information from Public Whip the claim is pretty spot on based on the number of rebellions against votes attended.  Had Clegg found his courage (maybe that’s what the other parties bring to the LDs while they’re providing a heart or brain) and attended more of the votes the rebellion rate might have been higher.

Clegg :
Cameron :
Osborne :
May :


We need more encryption and security, not less

The linked article shows just how trivial it is to use metadata to identify the entity associated with the connecting device and start to unpick further details of their life, work and the supposedly secure stuff they’re working on.

Security, a thought for the day

If the ‘good guys’ have a backdoor then so do the criminals
If the ‘good guys’ can crack your encryption, so can the criminals

Having weak encryption would not have stopped the Paris attacks as the security services had already stopped monitoring them.

If you think “I don’t use encryption” then think again, when you bought something online you used encryption, when you made a mobile phone call encryption was needed to protect the setup of the call, your password is stored (or should be) in an encrypted format to prevent hackers from simply downloading a human readable list and so on. Encryption isn’t some dark evil used only by terrorists, it’s used by all of us for good reasons. The government needs to give better reasons for denying it to the public than “terrorists!!”.

Alternatively maybe they’ll be happy that all their governmental and private communications are no longer encrypted to make the job of the press easier in reporting on their deeds and misdeeds, for surely if they have “nothing to hide they have nothing to fear”

Gay Marriage (or as I prefer to call it “Marriage”)

Lots of the normal cockwaffle from the religious right in the UK (mostly tories but with some fellow travelers from around the house) about how marriage is purely a thing between male and female, ordained by their version of god.  (The numbers aren’t in yet on the Public Whip site).

The gem of the debate as far as I’m concerned comes from former Conservative defence minister Sir Gerald Howarth who believes there is a “aggressive homosexual community” out there.  I assume they’re badgering him to get out there for a bit of cottaging and demanding that there are compulsory lessons in various “deviant” sexual practices from the day kids start at school.

So here’s a thing, there’s nothing in any law which says “you must be gay” or “you must fuck people of the same sex”, in the same way there is no law saying that sexual intercourse must occur only at home, with the lights off and then without any contraception with the aim of creating lots and lots of babies for god and country.

Apparently Sir Gerald fears that “there are plenty in the aggressive homosexual community who see this as but a stepping stone to something even further”.  No details on the “something” of course, allowing him to slur anyone who supports the bill as supporting all sorts of possible evils.

Let’s have a look at some of the things which have been hinted at in the past.

  • Pagan Weddings – Where’s the problem, seriously…
  • Polyamourous (multiple partner) weddings – Again, seriously where’s the problem.  Ok the pension and other aspects will be a bitch but is this about tradition (I’m sure there are plenty of traditions out there which can be called on to support this one) or jealousy
  • Beastality – Errr, even if you believe the “aggressive gays” are in support of this it’s not going to happen if only because various other animal protection laws and “consent” kick in.
  • Child weddings – Age of consent / Various UN and EU controls etc etc, again not going to happen

So, Sir Gerald, please go back to the 14th Century where you belong.

Yet another arrogant bastard in power

There’s something about politicians (and the rich / powerful) that they believe the rules do not apply to them, doubly so if they actually create the rules.  So, Barnet Councillor Brian Coleman you are officially ‘tosser of the day’, violence against another person is not acceptable except in self defence.

You decided that attacking another person because they were capturing your image from public land doing something illegal.  Though I rather suspect that you strongly believe in the right of the council to deploy CCTV and the police to film everyone attending any form of gathering for later checking.

I wonder if you’ve ever said “If you’ve nothing to hide, you’ve nothing to fear.”

Please do the honourable thing (if you don’t understand the word please buy a dictionary) and resign.



UK Local Elections: UKIP Nuttery

Now, I’m not going to claim this this guy is representative of the whole of UKIP, and there is going to be some bias coming from those who oppose them as a party in that they’re digging as hard as possible to find the extreme nutjobs.

However, this guy is a piece of work, exercise to be less gay, yeah right.