28 July 2004

It's gone

I am all in favour of freedom of speech. I also believe that people should always take the trouble of reading what people with a different opinion think about issues. So for a long time, I have linked in my Blogroll to http://www.grouchyoldcripple.com. I disagree with EVERYTHING he says and I mostly despise the things he writes on his blog because they are not just biased, some of them I consider to be so far-fetched that it hurts me to read it. But I have always found his posts interesting to read, if only because they showed me another side to the same medal.

Denny has always been kind to me and treated me with respect, eventhough he completely disagrees with my views. However, with the American elections coming in November, he seems to have shifted up a gear.  There is no longer the slightest hint of any kind of willingness to look at things from any other angle than his own. Calling Democrats stupid, fuckwits, bastards and whatever else you can throw at them, simply for being Democrats just doesn't do it for me.

I think Bush is an idiot but that doens't make all Republicans idiots. I think Michael Moore has made a propaganda film, not a documentary...so hey, we agree on something there. But I still agree with Moore's general point: Bush is bad for America and for the world. But that does not make me blind for the errors he makes in his latest movie.

Anyway, it is with great sadness that I have decided to remove Grouchy Old Cripple from my Blogroll. The way things are completely taken out of context and twisted has become too much for me to read. And I just do not want anyone to think I endorse Denny's views in any shape or form. Or that I endorse the way he expresses them. Because that is the main problem: I don't have any problem with his views as such. But the way he expresses them grates immensely.

There is never one side completely right. And the way it now seems that Democrats are bastards and Republicans, or at least the Bush administration, are saints is just ridiculous.

To the well-off Democrats who disagree with tax cus for the rich, he simply says: You don't HAVE to accept the cuts, just take out your chequebook and donate the extra money to poor people. 
That is a completely non-sensical argument.  In fact, it IS not even an argument.

All there is to read there now is Ad-Hominem. And I HATE that. Because it serves no purpose.

There, I am feeling better now.

Denny: this is nothing personal, you have always been kind and have defended my right to speak on your site, even when you disagree with me.

25 July 2004

Farenheit 9/11

I finally went to see it last night. My verdic (for those who care...): A really bad film. CMOpletely misses what it sets out to do: make peopel wonder abotu Bush. All it does it irritate because it is so unbalanced. And this is from someone (me) who actually agrees with Michael Moore that Bush is a liar who should be stopped.

The first part of the film is interesting when Moore shows the connection between the Bush family and the Bin Ladens and how much money frmo Saudi Arabia is actually invested in the US.

But then Moore wants to show us how bad the war in Iraq is. And he shows us footage that we have all seen on the news. Together with a crying mother who has lost her son. And it goes on and on and on about the oil connections and how Bush appoints his friends all around him.  And how soldiers are feeling down because they have to shoot innocent Iraqi people.

Democrats can speak their mind all the time but rarely so we see a Republican getting the chance to defend the reason for going to war. Or defend the war in general. Not balanced at all.
I was about to walk out, not because I did not agree with it, but because it was just boring. It dragged on and on and on.

No clue why this got the Palme d'Or in Cannes. The jury must really hate George Bush and anyone who makes a film against him can get a prize. I think I might go and make a movie like that myself. Maybe I will win a prize.

In his previous film, Bowling for Columbine, Michael Moore exposed a part of the American society for its love of violence. Parts of that movie annoyed me aswell but on the whole, I thought it was brilliant. If anything because Moore conducted interviews with opponents as well as with those he agreed with. In Farenheit 9/11, he only shows us people who support his case. But more importantly, Farenheit 9/11 is nothign more than a personal crusade against one man. Now that Moore has got that out of his system, I hope he will get back to making great, interesting and revealing documentaries again.

Oh, and another thing: Just accept that Bush was elected 4 years ago. I did nto agree with it either but Bush' election is a fact that happened and Christ, learn to deal with it and focus on winnin gthe coming elections instead of still yelling and screaming about the previous one.

23 July 2004

When it rains..............

Ever been in the middle of a tropical downpour? I have in Australia.
They are totally cool. It rains so hard that it simply becomes fun to
stand outside in the rain.
But England gets this too. Yesterday. The only thing missing was a
temperature of about 35C. Instead we had a tropical downpour at about
14C. Not hot but still cool.

In the middle of the afternoon, day turns in to night, thunder,
lightening, totally fantastic. Even better if you can be outside in that
rain. So when they were looking for a volunteer to get in the car and
take the mail to the post office, I volunteered. I drove in a tropical
downpour. Could not see further then my own windscreen and the streets
had become rivers. I even had to get out on the passenger side of the
car because getting out on the driver's side would have meant stepping
up to my ankles in the water.

With all the mail in a plastic bag, I braced myself and ran to the post
office. 30 minutes before closing time. I saw the door, stretched out my
hand to open it ..........and slammed right into a locked door. Closed.

Behind the locked door, 3 women looked at me, full of pity, gesturing
that they were indeed closed. I pointed at my watch, indicating it was
30 minutes before closing time. They simply gestured they were closed,
no explanation, nothing. By now, the water had reached my breasts,
through my padded bra no less. Needless to say I was getting a little
cold in the rain. So I yelled (had to yell as the rain was so loud I
could not even hear myself talk!!) that I had business mail that was
franked and paid for and needed to go out today. The women gestured that
they were closed.

Well, I understood that by then. I held up my bags with mail, yelling,
again, I had to get the mail out. The women offered NO suggestion,
nothing! Just, again, that the post office was closed...... By now there
was no dry thread on my body so I relaxed my muscles and decided I could
not get anymore wet so I might as well let it happen. Then one of the
women pointed at the letterbox in the door. I opened it and we had a
conversation through the letterbox!! Whilst I was outside in the rain
still. I yelled: if you let me in, we can talk without me drowning
here!! Once again she said she could not do that because they were
closed because they were stuck by lightening and the computer was down
and if she let me in, other people would want to get in as well. Other
people? There is nobody on the fucking street because they have all
managed to find shelter somewhere!!!

After 5 minutes of arguing through the letterbox, the woman took pity on
me and opened the door. Well, opened it just enough to signal for me to
hand her my plastic bag with mail through a tiny opening. Ha!! No way!!
I push the door open and stepped inside. I was dripping like a drowned
rat and said, in a loud, but not angry, voice: Good, now that I am
inside and in a dry place, sheltered from the rain like these other 3
customers inside this post office, tell me again why you can not take my
mail. What's up with the computers?

The lady did not apologise but instead gave me an angry look for wetting
her floor and tried to push the door shut on me. I strode up to the
counter and said: My mail is franked; all you need to do is sign for it
and put it in your mailbag. You do not need a computer to do that. The
cow behind the counter looked at me, sighed as if she was doing me a
huge favour and handed me a towel.

Ahhh....finally, a nice gesture. WRONG. She handed me the towel and
said: can you please dry the mail of a little bit, the envelopes are
wet. No apologies, nothing.

I dried off the mail, got my receipt and totally dignified walked back
into the rain, got in my car and drove off.

I got more and more angry when I drove back to work. Not because they
were closed, fair enough, computer failures happen. Not because they
locked the door in the first place. After all a post office is not a
shelter. But when someone knocks on the door, 30 minutes before closing
time in a tropical rainstorm with mail, you at least open the door to
invite them in and explain why you can not accept their mail. All
acceptable. But they let me stand outside in the rain or 5 minutes,
communicated through the letterbox, sent me away before they opened the
door wide enough to push the mail through. Like I was some kind of
criminal to be kept outside the building. And they acted like it was
totally normal behaviour. Saying things like; Oh, that is quite some
rain out there, you are completely soaked my love.........

The more I think about it, the more I feel like making an official
complaint. The Post Office HQ wants to close 28 post offices in the
Midlands. I know one they can close. Fire them all. Because the post
offices are run by middle aged women too stupid to know a computer from
a calculator.


An American 'journalist' gets on a plane. In the plane is a group of
Syrian musicians. The woman thinks they are behaving suspiciously and
thinks she has landed in the middle of a terrorist plot.

Fourteen dark-skinned men from Syria board Northwest's
flight 327, seated in two separate groups. Some are carrying oddly
shaped bags and wearing track suits with Arabic script across the back.
During the flight the men socialize, gesture to one another, move about
the cabin with pieces of their luggage, and, most ominous of all,
repeatedly make trips to the bathroom. The author links the men's
apparently irritable bladders to a report published in the Observer
(U.K.) warning of terrorist plots to smuggle bomb components onto
airplanes one piece at a time, to be secretly assembled in

Of course nothing happens but after the flight, the woman is still
convinced she witnessed a Dry-run, a practice session for the next
terrorist attack. I am not even going to link to the story, it has been
going around the Blog-world for days now.

I would personally feel slightly uncomfortable being on a plane with a
large group of Arab young men. Totally politically incorrect but I would
be lying if I said I would not notice them.

However, the fear would subside as soon as the plane lands safely....but
this woman's belief only grew stronger the more she thought about what
she had witnessed: Arab men on a plane, talking to each other, walking
around the plane and *gasp* having a pee!!!

She then went on to write a second article, saying she is getting more
and more sure she witnessed terrorists in practice. And because most
Americans are totally stupid it seems, more and more people believe her
story. A typical example of Scream loud enough and people will start to
think you are telling the truth.

Arabs on a plane = terrorists. No wonder Arabs think the whole world,
and in particular Americans, hates them. This is the most racist and
disgusting thing I have hear din a long long time. People in America are
now calling for RACIAL PROFILING at airports.

Yeah, why not simply ban all planes from the Arab world? Oh no, can not
do that. Most of Bush' business partners would no longer be allowed into
the country if they did that.

16 July 2004

...waiting on a sunny afternoon

(after The Kinks of course)
I was warned before I moved and indeed: English summers are total crap. Have not seen any summer here yet. Apart from a few weeks (!!) of nice weather in May, summer is a rainy affair here on this island. Dutch summers are probably just as bad but MY GOD the English are a bunch of whiners! They are only happy when they have something to moan about: Europe, English sports (Tim Henman did NOT win Wimbledon, England did NOT win the european Football Cup, England will NOT win the Golf this week, the Athletics team has NO chance of a Gold medal in Athens.....moan, moan, moan, moan!!!!!) and of course The Weather.
Tabloids are moaning hardest in times like this: there is no news so the weather fills pages of newspaper.  Even more than it normally does. If the weather is sunny and hot, lots of naked chicks pose for The Sun or the Daily Express. Now we get shots of empty beaches and headlines like "Book a Hans-free Holiday" (an article that encourages English people to go Spain because Germans can not afford a holiday due to bad economic times)
I should be home by now but I am supposed to get a lift from a colleague. Unfortunately she has to work VERY late. Oh, actually, she is packing her bags as I write this. I might just be lucky and leave only an hour late!!! Have a great weekend all of you.
And send me loads of positive energy because I have my appraisal on Monday!!

13 July 2004

Cashless is The mark of The Beast!!

From The Cutting Edge:

...the economy of the coming Antichrist is prophesied to be cashless.

Let us review this prophecy.

Revelation 13:16-17: "And he [the False Religious Prophet] causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads: And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name."

Our belief that the economy of the Antichrist is going to be cashless is based solely on this one single passage of Scripture. While some people might believe this is a inadequate basis for the propagation of such strong belief, we who know our God say that, if God said something just once, it is reason for every person to believe it with all their heart, mind, and soul, and it is a strong enough belief to suffer martyrdom.

We have no doubt that the masses of people will be properly conditioned to accept this transition to smart cards that use the new currency, the electronic global currency. When that happens, the peoples of the world will stand just one step away from the demand from Antichrist that the smart cards be replaced by electronic implants. Those people who refuse the oath and the implanted chip will be taken to a special place of execution to be beheaded.

So I work to enhance the arrival of The Anti Christ as I work for a place that sells cashless systems. Is there still time for me to better my life? Is there still a place for me to run?

Mind you, no matter how many times I read that Bible verse, I can not discover the word Cashless Payment.....

12 July 2004

USA for Africa????

What can you say?
The USA gives more money than all other countries in the world put together to the fight against AIDS/HIV. That is nice and good. Unfortunately they only give it to countries where they can preach the so-called ABC-strategy: Abstinence, Being faithful and, if really really no other alternative, use a Condom.

This is of course a totally stupid approach in countries in Africa where men shag themselves silly and abstinence does not even warrant a mention. And being faithful is seen as not being a real man.

Barbara Lee, a US Democratic congresswoman, told delegates: "In an age where 5 million people are newly infected each year and women and girls too often do not have the choice to abstain, an abstinence-until-marriage programme is not only irresponsible, it's really inhumane."

In The Guardian today are a few articles on this problem. The USA has sent only 50 scientists to the conference in Bangkok this year. As opposed to the normal 250+ people who are partly responsible for training people from less-developed countries.

George Bush gives more money to AIDS/HIV fighting. He gives more development aid. But he gives this aid frequently only to countries where abortion is illegal. Family planning groups in Third World countries frequently see their funding cut when they do not denounce abortion outright. Or when they promote the Morning After pill in case of emergency.

It is disgusting that the Bush administration tries to push its agenda through organisations of people who give their life to helping others. I can only hope that Americans are smart enough to vote Bush out. Not even because he and his administration are failing in Iraq, but just on the basis that he claimed to be a mainstream, compassionate conservative for every American. In the past 4 years, it has become clear that Bush is all but that. He is not far from being a religious radical nutcase who wants to bring the USA back into the 19th century.

Wake up America!!!

It is a shame that Michael Moore has gone so overboard with Fahrenheir 9/11. I have not seen it yet but all I read in the papers is: Applaud the idea but because he is so pedantic about his hatred for Bush, there seems to be no fair balance of his opinion and the right to reply. And some conclusions HE draws are presented as cold hard facts when they are clearly not. It is a shame that this important film will now be seen as nothing more that a personal vendetta against the Bush family. But think of this: After the planes crashed into the Twin Towers, American Airspace was closed to every plane from no matter who. Except for one: A plane with members of the Bin Laden family was allowed to leave the country after Bush gave personal permission. Not saying Bush has something to do with 9/11 but it shows where his priorities are: money, business and oil.

Wake up America!!!

08 July 2004

We are moving!!

I feel like a grown up now. Today J. and I have signed the lease for our flat. We are moving in together!! On my birthday next month. Quite a birthday present hey!! I am totally excited by all this. My own place. With my girlfriend. Our own furniture, our own stuff. No flatmates, just us. Close to town centre and a nice big livingroom.

I can not WAIT to move. It is totally cool. But scary too. No longer can I tell J. to stay at her own place when I am tired or after a fight. Joint bank accounts, joint shopping, joint insurance.....JOINT AT THE HIP!!

Went back to Holland this weekend. Brought back loads of Dutch cheese *grin*.
I don't really miss Holland although I did feel a slight regret when I was on the tram in The Hague on my way to Radio TV West. That visit was good for my ego as loads of old colleagues came to say hello and that they missed me:) Good. That will show them how much they took me for granted all this time. Actually that is not true. I have never felt taken for granted by my closest colleagues. So yes, I do miss working there. But that is not the same as regretting moving to England. I enjoy my life here. I get respect and appreciation at my job and that is worth a lot. My team leader is behind me in everything I do for the company and that means a lot too.

I am only getting started here!!