The Plastic Hippo

February 3, 2017

Street crime

handbag
The trauma, anxiety and adverse effects caused by street crime, particularly robbery, is dependent upon the psychological resilience and the physical and emotional health of the victim. Although each crime is unique and the reactions of victims may vary, there are common trends that apply to most victims of crime both during the robbery itself and the aftermath of the crisis.

Many victims report a sense of unreality as the crime is being perpetrated and in the moment find it difficult to believe that another human being is actually robbing them of valuable possessions. The initial instinct is to cling onto valuables with dear life until the realisation that direct or implied violence might threaten dear life itself. In retrospect, a robbery that in reality might last for seconds seems to last for hours as the emotional calamity is played out. The acute stress response sometimes characterised as “fight or flight” forces a split-second conflict between obvious feelings of anger and fear. Most targets of street crime tend to abandon possessions when faced directly by violence and threats of violence and fear almost always holds sway over anger. (more…)

January 31, 2017

Roll over…play dead

Birmingham Victoria Square 30/1/17 via Tom @positiveLad

Birmingham Victoria Square 30/1/17 via Tom @positive Lad

The darkest hour is not necessarily just before the dawn and it is possible to be surrounded by stygian gloom even in broad daylight. With the black dog of depression lying across the collective chest of humanity as hatred and ignorance flourish unchallenged, optimism and compassion is for fools and traitors asking questions will find the hot breath of Cerberus snapping at their heels. Perhaps the victors are correct and losers like me should get over it, move on and stop moaning.

I have attended enough rallies, marches and demonstrations and have signed enough worthy petitions to know that marching and demonstrating and signing petitions has a precisely zero effect in challenging injustice. An hour or so out in the cold or an occasional blister on the big toe might make the warrior feel a warm glow of self satisfaction but it has never saved children from being bombed by dictators. Signing a petition is now even easier as it allows militancy from the comfort of a device connected to the internet and saves the security services so much time in identifying individual threats to national security. (more…)

January 28, 2017

Executive disorders

trump-may
It might just be possible to take in the deluge of effluent pouring out of the White House during the first week of Trump`s presidency with open-mouthed incredulity.

Another reaction might be to simply deny that such madness is possible 17 years into the 21st century and hope that if we close our eyes and make a wish then the whole thing will turn out to be a bad dream. A third coping mechanism might be to dismiss the deranged collection of executive orders as meaningless posturing only intended to grab a passing headline and a fourth straw to clutch at is that all of Trump`s hatred is unconstitutional and therefore unenforceable. It is relatively easy to explain and disregard Trump`s tub thumping as the product of a fragile ego, an unstable mind and a rather sad, desperate plea for attention. Sadly, the sorry spectacle of a British Prime Minister rushing to legitimise the descent into a new dark age is a fandango that is more difficult to fathom and one that will be difficult to forget. (more…)

January 20, 2017

Constant sorrow

Filed under: History,Media,Music,Politics,Rights,World — theplastichippo @ 3:54 am
Tags: , , , , , ,

its-gonna-be-great
In an infinite, expanding and increasingly bizarre universe where strangeness and what once passed for normality have become blurred, the prospect of George Clooney forming a ZZ Top tribute band to perform at the inauguration of a racist con man as the President of the United States would, astonishingly, not be considered as much of a surprise.

The days when presidential indiscretions were quietly ignored are long gone and the American people have decided, with a little helpful persuasion from a former KGB gangster who is now a presidential gangster, that a shameless sexual predator who uses his fame to molest women is the right man for the job. It would seem that the cruel mockery of a journalist with disabilities is acceptable and that a deeply disturbing attitude towards his own daughter is, in some way, normal and that overt racism encouraging hatred is somehow appropriate in the second decade of the 21st century. When a president elect claims that he will be the greatest president ever created by God and gives responsibility for a massive arsenal of lethal weaponry to a character who likes to be known as “mad dog” and when that same president elect is happy to be endorsed by the KKK, then it might be time to start stocking up tinned foods, candles and toilet paper. (more…)

January 4, 2017

Investment opportunity

The next station stop

The next station stop

For people with a large sum of disposable income, I have a cast-iron, copper-bottomed, gold-plated investment opportunity guaranteed to return vast amounts of money for very little effort. All that is needed is initial start-up capital to provide basic raw materials.

I intend to lay a pathway of gravel between a picturesque if insignificant town and a deserted village some miles away. The path will be routed through various hamlets of between three and four houses. The actual location is unimportant but it must be within striking distance of the motorway network. On top of the gravel, I will place short yet stout wooden beams and at right angles to these will be two parallel steel rails at four foot, eight and a half inches apart. Four foot eight and a half is far more sensible than seven foot and a quarter of an inch because of some grooves at the gateway to a ruined Roman town in Northumberland and is the width of a chariot once the wheels have come off. I shall call my invention “a railway.” (more…)

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