Tuesday, 22 July 2014

Those EU benefits in full:


- Economic...

- Social...

- Political...

Harmonisation!

... Except during the gravest of crises - for example, the downing of a passenger plane over Ukraine, where a patchwork of existing trade deals between individual member states and Russia destroys any hope of a coordinated response...

Wednesday, 7 May 2014

Celebrity BBC Trust Challenge


Tonight, on the competition to find the next BBC Trust Chairman, we meet 'leftfield' contestant, Russell Brand, who explains why he's so right for the role:

"Yeah, well, like, I never actually tried DGs, Chairmen, Governors or nothing - what they actually like? PCP? Poppers? Crack? Meth? Can't be anything that manic, or else Crisp Patten wouldn't have done 'em, and got over them. But anyway, I tried everything else, and I managed to survive so I guess it's gotta be worth a try."

We also meet rank outsider, Jeremy Clarkson, who tells us: "To my mind the best way of choosing the next Chairman is the tried and tested (and trusted) method of the nursery rhyme: "Eeny meeny miney mo... No, actually, on the other hand..."

Sunday, 9 February 2014

Ideology conquers all


Some claim that the floods the UK encountered earlier this year are proof of man-made climate change (would cloud-seeding count as man-made?) Others suggest the floods are of biblical proportions (Noah didst encounter floods some time prior to the start of the Industrial Revolution, in truth). But for certain politicians there is only one way to approach the problem, and to help people in their hour of need; green ideology... Here's a (slightly paraphrased version of  a) recent interview conducted on Sky News with an opposition spokesperson who was discussing the 'inappropriate' government response to flooding in the county of Somerset:

Interviewer: And so, according to you, where has the government gone wrong in it's response to the flooding in Somerset?

Opposition Spokesperson: The fact of the matter is that the government has not taken into account the effects of climate change on our changing weather patterns.

Interviewer: And what would you do differently, Maria, when it came to responding quickly and effectively to the plight of the people in Somerset?

Spokesperson: We would clearly want to take into account the effects of climate change on our changing weather patterns...

Thursday, 16 January 2014

Big Fat Gypsy Celebrities



Coming soon at Bohodotcom:

As we know, this thing we all call Reality TV can often find itself evolving into Celebrity Reality TV. For example, the cookery genre rustles up Celebrity Bake-Off and, as if that were not enough, The Great Sport Relief Bake Off (with even more celebrities). From the world of ballroom dancing we get Strictly Come Dancing. Big Brother migrates into Celebrity Big Brother. These days, celebs can even become Universally Challenged. And so it goes on...

But shouldn't celebs be getting equally involved in the exploitation wing of Reality TV? That's to say, the benefits scroungers, the fatties, the anorexics, the scumbags and losers that RTV so elegantly portrays?

Well, here it is: In the coming weeks you'll see, on this very website: Celebrity Supersize Vs Superskinny, Celebrity Undateables, Celebrity Benefits Street, Embarrassing Celebrity Bodies, Big Fat Gypsy Celebrities, 24 Hours in Celebrity A&E, Celebrity Weight Loss Ward, Botched Up Celebrity Bodies, Celebrity One Born Every Minute, World's Worst Celebrity Holiday Horrors... Eastenders, and, of course, Celebrity Sherlock!

And it'll be a riot. Plus, of course, it'll all be true, horrendous, verifiable and celebrated! We promise.

Just watch this space!

 

Sunday, 22 December 2013

The line taken by a leading QC on a recent criminal trial



"It was indeed troubling over recent weeks to behold the carefully constructed reputation of a much loved national treasure flagrantly tarnished by hostile cross-examination, solely in order to give those accused in the trial the opportunity, as is supposedly their right under English law, to develop a proper defence.

Was the witness not fragrant as she glided elegantly into court each day, and, with composure and effortless grace, confronted the endless onslaught of public vilification? Had her Public Relations and highly professional legal teams not worked tirelessly to establish and consolidate and defend her brand as the very epitome of the Middle-Class Dream?

And yet, to what end? Simply so that the court system might feed the insatiable press and public appetite for gossip and tittle-tattle, satisfy their need to cull the tallest poppies, and ultimately nourish the iconoclastic demands of certain shabby and truth-seeking journalists?"


This statement will run and run and has already been endorsed by countless second rate journalists, celebrities and members of the public who have never met any of the people in question.

If you’d like to comment, you know where to go…

  
 

Sunday, 1 September 2013

Fairytale-Trade



The Independent on Sunday has published its annual guide to the UK's most ethical businesses ahead of the Social Enterprise Awards 2013. Here's a snap-shot:

Fair-trade Cocaine - Hugely successful cocaine producing collective that is 25 per cent owned by Colombian growers. Their produce is exclusively distributed in the UK through the award-winning Brighton and Dalston Fair-Earth Farmers Market Company

Ethical Doggy - Multicultural dog-training awareness programme ensures Fido is sensitive to postmen – irrespective of creed, faith or colour - and attacks them fairly, consistently, and without prejudice.

Organic Bike Company - This award-winning bike manufacturer makes bicycles out of organic titanium, aluminium, and plutonium, ethically sourced from companies committed to fair-trade smelting and radiation policies.

Vegan Slasher Nasties - Celebrated art-house film crew that puts on violent, extremely gory productions, showcasing actors with a life-long commitment to veganism and organic values.

Land-Art - Critically acclaimed works of art produced by vegetarian artists using products reclaimed from dustbins and sewage plants.

Imelda Fairfuck – Popular internet porn supplier employing stars who are committed to fair-trade masturbation and environmentally friendly condoms.

Fricking - Highly profitable fracking company that uses drilling equipment ethically sourced from badger-loving, Peruvian tool manufacturers.

Polar Bore - Acting workshop for bipolar vegan performers who donate one per cent of their income to the preservation of polar bear habitats.

Make War not War – Ethical warmongering collective committed to ending all wars by means of environmentally-aware battlefield scenarios, using weapons organically sourced from fair-trade arms manufacturers.

Make Poverty Poverty - An old favorite - This highly successful PR company turns out ethical advertising, wrist-bands and billboard messages that won't stand the test of time, and to which celebrities can, with a clear conscience, turn a blind eye.


Sunday, 26 May 2013

Exam time!

Politics - Multiple choice question No 97a)

Who has most to gain from the 'Snooper's Charter'?

a) Curtain-twitching reactionaries?

b) Liberals, who, by and large, dislike snoopers and their charters (except for Lord Carlile)?

c) Software companies who'll be paid millions to provide efficient snooping software (or not terribly efficient software, as the case may be)?

d) Those politicians with commercial links to the software companies mentioned in c)?

e) The terrorists, who really give a damn about the fact that ordinary, law-abiding British citizens will have their Internet use scrutinised round the clock (unlike the terrorists who'll no longer use the Internet to communicate as they used to?)

Thursday, 31 January 2013

15 Most Popular Posts!


1) Thursday, 3 March 2011
A doctor a day keeps the Apple away

Advertisement:

Every so often we give a leading tech company a free plug. We hope this'll encourage it to shove loads of advertising our way. Failing that it fills column inches. Today we look at the iFad2, released yesterday to universal acclaim by a man wearing jeans and a black turtle neck jumper. (Continued...)
2) Thursday 11 February, 2010

Hacker:  You know what, Humphrey? When I look back and I think of the frustration I used to feel, when the likes of you and Bernard blocked or stalled what I was trying to do... (Continued...)

3) Friday, 15 January 2010

The boss of Waterstones, Gerry Johnson, left this week after the company reported disappointing sales of celebrity memoirs. Johnson championed fresh literary talent such as Jordan, so it seems appropriate to let her comment on his departure. (Continued…)

4) Saturday, 27 August 2011

BANKERS OF THE WORLD UNITE! YOU HAVE NOTHING TO LOSE BUT COCAINE!

Peter Oborne? Charles Moore? These days it’s the right (not the left) we find meditating upon the excesses of capitalism. Maybe we never had a free market in the first place (under left... under right...). (Continued...)

5) Tuesday, 4 January 2011

The End of the Beginning of History

Distinguished academic, Professor Fukyu-karma responds to criticism that, in 2011, his thesis "The End of History" looks more than ever like it was essentially a pipe dream:-

"Okay, guys. I know what you're going to say. The End of History repeated itself, first as tragedy after 911, then as farce after the economic meltdown of 2008. (Continued......)

6) Sunday, 20 February 2011

We're all royalty now.

What's the world coming to when the Duchess of York is not invited to the Royal Wedding whilst those arrivistes the Beckhams are? We asked pop culture's No.1 power couple to give their "historical perspective" on such matters.

David: Well the way I look at it is, we all come from the same place in the end.

Victoria: Or in the beginning, Dave (Continued...)

7) Thursday, 27 January 2011

Sex, drugs, and hack and roll

What'll they make of phone hacking a hundred years from now? Will writers, journalists, poets go beyond the mundane "who hacked whom"? It's possible. They say historical events are often best viewed through the prism of literary narrative... or, something along those lines... (Continued...)

8) Monday, 14 March 2011

UN if you want to...

What if -
As the world agonises over whether to impose a no-fly zone over Libya, we ask what Neville Chamberlain's declaration of war might have sounded like if the UN had been around in 1939 and all humanitarian intervention had to be referred to the security council... (Continued...)

9) Sunday, 24 April 2011

Judge Dreadful

At a time when victimised celebrities the world over are coming under sustained attack from the "Freedom of Information League" one man defends the rights of those celebrities. His name is Judge Dreadful - though he sometimes operates under the aliases "Judge Needy" or "Judge Dodgy". (Continued...)

10) Thursday, 5 May 2011

Afterlife 2

(An autocrat and a terrorist bogeyman discuss conspiracy theories)

Osama: You heard the latest conspiracy theory, brother? (Continued...)


11) Saturday, 5 November 2011

The Global University

Coursework: The Long Term Benefits of Globalisation - Part 3a, Section 2.

Our very own Professor Gspot offers the following criteria for global economic harmony:
"Once the multiple and diverse economies of the global community have become fully and soundly integrated (Continued...)

12) Saturday, 12 November 2011

We're no wise-guys!

"I would like to comment on what I deem to be the somewhat inappropriate remarks made by a certain Mr. Watson during the select committee hearing that I had the good fortune to attend this week. (Continued...)

13) Friday, 18 November 2011

The Lyricism of the Technocrat

"You know, just because we are supposedly grey, unelected technocrats, this does not mean that we are thinking, sleeping and dreaming in barren prose all of the time. (Continued...)


14) Sunday, 13 February 2011

BAFTAS! The Thing's Speech.

The thing about the BAFTAS... really is... the speech

"I would like to say or rather we would like to say how honoured I or rather we are to be here tonight honouring you honouring us honouring you honouring us honouring you dressed as we are in these beautiful Valentino dresses or are they Armani tuxedos? (Continued...)


15) Saturday, 5 February 2011

LOCAL COUNCIL NOTICE: Library closures

"Due to central government's negative policy of reducing funding for the provision of public services from local councils in Britain, it is with much regret and sorrow that we have to state we have no option but to proceed with cuts to certain non-essential, and, in addition, some less-than-essential, services. To this effect it has been and will be necessary from now on to offer a less thorough and comprehensive library lending service to the men, women and children within this community, notwithstanding the variable hardships that this might or might not bring about. (Continued...)

Friday, 19 October 2012

Anyone for a Conspiracy Theory?


Archive:-

Monday, 30 November 2009

Intel. A chip off the old Bloc

My handler told me: no names. My post, the first 'intelligence blog' to appear on the web - to the best of my knowledge - won't mention pseudonyms, cover-names, pet-names, pen-names or code names. I told 'Z' - not my handler's real "code-name", simply a smokescreen - that I'm more interested in what people do than what they’re called. And 'Z' told me, I can't mention what they do either.

So anyway, what is it we get up to in our 'community'? Though of course I can't tell you the precise details, I can hint: We follow people. We follow you. We follow you, just as you follow us. Yes, we know you follow us. How do we know you follow us? Because we see you every day, scanning, searching, logging on to certain sites – I’m not talking just intelligence websites, but also affiliates sites (intelligence or other). We know how you think. We even know how you will think before you think. How so? Yes, how so?.

It’s what you people refer to as 'conspiracy theory'.

Right now the intelligence community is concerned the conspiracy theories we know and love are losing traction, they're out of control. Why's that? What do I mean by "out of control"? I'll phrase it in a way that's not what you’d call prosaic, not literal: But what I mean (if you'll allow me to mean something) is, too many conspiracy theories spoil the broth. And I hear you say, literal? Prosaic? What this guy's just given us is a mixed metaphor - pure and simple.

Perhaps. But it is a mixed metaphor that I wanted to deploy for quite some time. And why? Because I know it'll distract you, just for one moment, from what I'm leading on to. Have you got that? Probably not... but then again, you might've just about got it, I think, and you might be afraid... if you happen to be that person whose IP address (starting 134.135...) vanished from my monitor just 0.93 seconds ago! Don't worry, we can follow your IP, even after its vanished!

Anyway, so here we go: We invented conspiracy theories and we invented them to make you afraid. You don't realise this, you probably cannot accept it right now, and you probably never will. But it's true. We always wanted you to think that nothing - no thing - controversial happens unless a powerful organisation makes it happen... Unless a covert governmental agency, or a foreign terrorist cell, planned it that way. And you've always bought that notion. But one day, my friends, you ran too far with that notion, these theories, and you made them your own, your own theories. Now that cannot be right, can it? They are not your theories, they're ours. We created them. So hey guys, could you please just give us back our darned theories? (Okay - that's somewhat tongue in cheek, in case you didn't capiche.)

Or... don't you guys just f- get it? You see, if you can get all your heads round 'information overload', why can't you get them round 'conspiracy overload'? Who the hell will believe these conspiracies any more if, for every famous death, there are ten thousand theories? Next year, there will be a hundred thousand theories for some guy who's one tenth as big. And maybe, one day, there’ll be millions for just your average John Doe. No one will believe these theories any more. They'll be meaningless. And where's the point in that?

So, cool your jets, boys and girls. Cut the theories. If you want anyone to believe in anything ever again, then stop dicking around with all this, 'my belief's as good as the next guy's' shit. Some things are true and some things are not - except when we, and only we, insinuate that they are. And if you keep on spreading too many of your own goddam theories, then maybe we'll find who you are, we'll track your IP addresses, because we’re starting to think that the only reason you'd possibly want people to stop believing in our theories (by spreading so many of your own) is because you are the enemy. The real enemy. The enemy of a community that does theories good and proper.

See, that's the point: The silicon chip, the internet, the web, they were never meant to be about democratizing things like knowledge and truth - or conspiracy theories for that matter. And that's because it's no longer a case these days of, ye shall know truth and the truth shall set ye free. It's, ye shall know what you need to know, and technology can set you free. But first you have to learn how to use technology. And that, as we all know, is a discipline. Right, disciples? Right.

Think about that. We do. We think about it. Every day.

And ask yourself one last question - assuming you've read thus far: What did I mean earlier when I talked about my handler? Maybe, just maybe, I'm the handler, not the handled? And how do you know that anyone ever really told me what I could or couldn't say? After all, I've said quite a lot, have I not? But you'll have to answer that one yourselves, guys.


Yours abidingly and faithfully, Colonel Kurtz (And if you want to believe that's my real name then be my guest. In actual fact, it really is. Yep. Francis F. (the other Francis F.) stole it from me, not the other way round!

PS. A friend of mine tells me this: Next year, a butterfly will flap its wings in the Brazilian rain forest and there’ll be a million theories as to why it did so. But, in reality there's only one theory that's correct, guys. Only one. Think about it.

(On this occasion our 'intelligence blogger' very kindly agreed to provide us with his real name on account of the fact that the "trademark" on it had expired. However we are not convinced that it really is out of trademark and are therefore witholding it)

Sunday, 1 July 2012

Everybody needs good bankers...



From the archive:-

These days Select Committee hearings focus mainly on policing and the behaviour of the tabloid press (the televised ones do, at least.) But not that long ago it was bankers who were in the spotlight.

On one occasion back in early 2010, the boss of RBS, Stephen Hester, tried to laugh off his exorbitant pay packet. Here's how this blog viewed his performance back then. (How times have changed...):-

MONDAY, 11 JANUARY 2010 - "10 million pound RBS Boss: Even my parents think I'm a greedy bastard."

RBS boss Stephen Hester gave evidence to the Treasury select committee yesterday afternoon. This is the "transcript" of that evidence.

John McFall, MP: May I ask, what do your parents think of you, Mr Hester?

Hester: They think I'm a greedy bastard.

(Roars of laughter in the committee room)

McFall(Wiping tears from his eyes) Very good, Mr Hester. If I may say, that is an excellent joke. And one that I would expect from someone of your great stature. Now moving on, what does your wife think of you?

Hester: She thinks I'm a greedy bastard, but she likes the new kitchen.

(Derision throughout the chamber. Sound of MPs and journalists falling off their chairs)

McFall: You're in the wrong job, Mr Hester. You're a regular comedian, are you not? Were I head of light entertainment at the BBC I would pay you at least twenty million.

Hester: Indeed you would Mr McFall. Indeed you would.

(More laughter and derision.)

McFall(Fighting to hold back the tears) Too much, too much, Mr Hester... Now, Mr H. What do your children think of you? And please, please take your time. I haven't yet wiped away all of those tears that your last joke caused.

Hester: What do my children think? Well, Tom loved the Porsche. Tallulah adored the new pony and paddock, whilst Ed thinks I'm God after I bought him the recording studio.

(The chamber descends into chaos)

McFall: I have never come across such flair, such elegant wit. I am lucky to be here at this moment in time. Indeed, very lucky. Now, Mr Hester, what do your neighbours make of you?

Hester: My neighbours think I'm a greedy bastard. That's because they are envious. They tell people in our local village that I am a tosser. But they have to be nice to my face. You see, each year my family throws the most lavish summer ball in the county. If neighbours Ron and Val don't show due deference whenever they are in my company then they will find themselves very much uninvited. So, Ron and Val... who are the tossers now, eh? Eh?

(Howls of laughter around the chamber)

McFall(Trying to compose himself) We are witnessing pure genius. None could ever possibly question your salary, however high it might be, Mr Hester. You are indeed a man who is not simply rich in monetary terms, but also in terms of your character, your spirit and your charming humour. Now, Mr Hester. One final question: What does the taxpayer think of you, do you reckon?

Hester: The taxpayer? Who gives a fuck about them?

Monday, 30 January 2012

Look at the size of my bonus? Not half!


A leading international banker writes:

"Hello. Over recent weeks, there has been much huffing and puffing over the thorny issue of bankers and their huge bonuses. And I'm bound to say that it is, for the most part, stuff and nonsense. The world financial system is in turmoil right now and I would simply like to ask  you this: Who do you reckon's going sort out this infernal mess? Politicians? Mandarins? Technocrats? Not bloody likely! What do they know about the complexities of financial systems??

"Let me offer you an analogy that might explain the predicament we're currently facing:-

"Just imagine for one moment, if you will, that you have decided to take your family on a bit of an adventure holiday this year. You possess a state-of-the-art 4x4 and you fancy going on a trek, venturing out to some sparsely populated region of, say, Eastern Europe or Asia.

"Of course, your family members are not quite as gung-ho as you and are concerned that the region you've chosen is not somewhere you'd want to break down.

"You re-assure them that your 4x4 is too big, expensive and technologically sound to fail. You tell them that these 'mommas' just do not break down. And anyway, even if you do encounter minor difficulties, your Premium Insurance Plan will pick you up from anywhere in the world and get you to the nearest registered dealer - however far away that may be.

"So, off you go, exploring the more unspoilt regions of Eastern Europe, encountering no problems whatsoever, until, on day six of your trip, you discover that a problem with the automatic clutch transmission is creating a strange clunking sound whenever you pull away from junctions (assuming they have any junctions in this God-forsaken part of the world!)

"But it isn't a problem. You can still drive the damn thing and eventually you make your way to some fellow claiming to be a registered dealer in the nearest town one hundred and fifty miles away. He says that he knows what the problem is and can sort it out if you leave the car with him overnight. You check into the local five star hotel (assuming there is one) on the assumption everything will be okay by morning.

"But when you return, what do you find? The idiot has somehow blown up the engine and it is going to cost you a fortune to have it fixed. You expect him to do the job for free since he caused it, but he refuses. He says it was "circumstances beyond my control, Sir". What are you going to do, drive it away to the next town? You can't, it's buggered. Have it towed away to the next town, only to find some other goon who will charge you even more, and who might create even greater havoc?

"You get onto the insurance company and they tell you that since the car is already at a registered dealer there is nothing more they can do. You'll have to use this guy or fork out for the car to be towed to the next town, to the next overpriced goon.

"So you stick with the devil you know. You tell the mechanic to go ahead. You're stuck in this hell-hole for two weeks, whilst he ships in the parts and drafts in the (monumentally overpriced) labour to help sort the job out. You end up paying ten times what he quoted and you probably won't be able claim it all on insurance.

"But what else could you do? He was a registered dealer at least. He ordered the right parts and managed to get your car back on the road (eventually). There was no-one else qualified to do the job (apart from the idiot in the nearest town two hundred miles away).

"But hey, look on the bright side. At least you're motoring again!

"So anyway, where was I?

"Yes, what I was going to say is that we bankers, we're a bit like that car dealer /mechanic in my analogy (or the dealer in the next town or in the town beyond that.) We might have caused the problem in the first place. We might charge an arm and a leg to sort out the problem. You might feel that we've got you over a barrel.

"But - and this is a big but - who the hell else do you think is going to get you back on the road?"

"Eh?"