The Plastic Hippo

April 13, 2014

Careless in the community

Telegraph.co.uk

Telegraph.co.uk

In imagined nostalgia, there was a time when a community was defined by its pub, church, post office and school and life in merry old England revolved from cradle to grave with reassuring certainty. In present reality, however, dark forces are at work hatching dastardly plots intended to subvert our culture by infiltrating communities with hard line, fundamentalist extremists hell-bent on imposing warped dogma and alien ideology.

The pub is now a Tesco Express and the church is falling down but remains a lucrative long-term real estate investment opportunity. The post office is long gone and has been replaced with a food bank next to a loan shark. The school is now an Academy named after an unfamiliar sponsor and the community is now defined by hedge funds rather than hedgerows. (more…)

February 3, 2014

Home again

Filed under: Birmingham,History,Politics,Transport,Walsall,World — theplastichippo @ 2:00 am
Tags:
Via the plastic hippo

Via the plastic hippo

Sometimes, if time and money allow, it is extraordinarily therapeutic to burst out of the parochial bubble to catch some face time with the rest of the world and when opportunity presented a visit to a place on something called a bucket list, it was a case of bye-bye Walsall, see you later. The chance to walk on the same marble pavements that once experienced the sandals of Heraclitus, Alexander the Great, Saint Paul and Saint John proved too great a temptation so, without a second thought, bye-bye England.

When Sammy Cahn and Jimmy Van Heusen wrote “Oh it`s so nice to go travelling”, they clearly did not have to endure the ghastly shopping centre with a runway attached that calls itself Birmingham International Airport or have to change trains at a ghastly shopping centre with platforms known as the new “improved” New Street Station. A city the size of Birmingham and a region as important as the West Midlands really should have transport hubs that work. It was definitely not so much nicer to come home. (more…)

August 6, 2013

Irony`s last will and testament

Dean Perks image via freethinker.co.uk

Dean Perks image via freethinker.co.uk

Ukip, being of unsound mind and decaying body, hereby bequeath all its worldly bonkers ideas to the nation in perpetuity.

Dean Perks is almost certainly a fine, decent, hard-working self-employed builder and that unfortunate misunderstanding with Her Majesty`s Revenue and Customs was, I`m sure, due to a simple error that any small businessperson can make but is yet another example of EU tax extortion of decent, hard-working British citizens. Similarly, saying: “Sharia Law in my opinion it works as a prevention and prevention is better than cure. If you think you are going to get your hand chopped off for pinching something you won`t pinch it” is a simple error that any prospective Ukip parliamentary candidate for Halesowen and Rowley Regis can make. Mr Perks was addressing a massed rally of the Ukip faithful in the back room of a pub in Coventry and was advising his supporters and a passing dog of the dangers of social media. He told his followers to be careful of expressing any opinion on the internet thingy because Ukip might get found out. Sadly, his wise words to the bemused audience of old, white, slightly portly male technophobes were recorded and ended up on social media. (more…)

July 21, 2013

The Royal Hunt of the Sun

Image via internationaltimes.it

Image via internationaltimes.it

It cannot be easy being the commissioner of the Metropolitan Police or, for that matter, a Chief or Assistant Chief Constable of various other dwindling constabularies. Imagine having to spend your working day outside your HQ talking to cameras to explain that yet more lessons have been learnt, yet more lines in the sand have been drawn and issuing yet another appeal for calm and information.

If tackling crime and keeping us safe wasn`t difficult enough, pity the poor plod who has to deal with a half-wit of the calibre of Home Secretary Theresa May and yet another overweight, bald, wealthy white man in the shape of Justice Secretary Chris Grayling. However, even in the face of such adversity and even with 14,000 fewer police officers since the coalition regime assumed power recorded crime has decreased by a massive seven per cent. Experts and analysts have expressed their delight, surprise and bafflement that such a dramatic decline in bad things happening has been achieved in the teeth of economic ruin and Tory politicians` bellow of actual evidence of recovery even as they line their own corrupt pockets. But it was left to the BBC Conservative press office to give the most elegant of explanations to this unexpected fall in the level of crime. It seems that our collective unconscious has been so disgusted by the violence of the twentieth century that society has turned its back on wrongdoing and we are all now much nicer people. Do you see those people running around and jumping up to try and catch straws in the gale? That`s the BBC, that is. (more…)

July 14, 2013

Another dead tree

Filed under: Birmingham,Media,Sandwell,Walsall,West Bromwich,Wolverhampton — theplastichippo @ 1:19 pm

E and S

A question for the Editor of the Express and Star; where exactly in the European Court of Human Rights ruling on whole life sentences does it say that “killers get right to freedom”?

On Wednesday, the local rag for local people ran a front page splash that scraped out the bottom of a long empty barrel. “Outrage as killers get right to freedom” screamed the headline. Having obviously not read the actual judgement on a submission made by convicted murderers Jeremy Bamber, Douglas Vintner and Peter Moore, the unnamed “journalists” at the Effluent and Sewage suggested that the vile and heinous scum were about to be released from prison and “walk the streets” to continue their evil lifestyle of murderous mayhem. If the hacks had bothered to take just a tiny little peak at the document, they might have discovered that the opposite is the case. It is true that the judges at the ECHR said that a whole life tariff for utterly barbaric murder was “inhuman and degrading treatment” but did not in any way, shape or form decree that monsters should be released from incarceration. Instead, the experts in law suggested that life sentences should be subject to review after, as an example, 25 years when a court would decide if a very bad person should be set free, remanded or, more importantly, remain banged up.

Displaying complete ignorance of the law or, indeed, the ability to understand or read a legal document, the E and S went straight to Conservative MP for Cannock, Aidan Burley. You may remember this chap. He is the immigrant to this country that complained of “multicultural crap” during the Olympics and gets his kicks from hiring Nazi uniforms for men he likes to look at. Having taken substantial donations from JCB, he has also enjoyed the “hospitality” offered by the governments of Sri Lanka and the Maldives to sort out their human rights issues. It`s good to know that our hard working MPs can halt oppression by lying on a beach selling JCBs to corrupt governments. I hope he took his sun block. It would be awful if he came back looking brown.

Next up for the Ego and Stolichnaya was Conservative MP for Staffordshire South Gavin Williamson who thinks it is a good idea for Britain to abandon the European Convention of Human Rights. It is entirely ridiculous to infer that Gavin`s only success in public office is achieving the expansion of the autism spectrum to beyond infinity. He is not stupid; he is just a little giddy. (more…)

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