Thursday, 24 December 2015

MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE UPDATE 28.12.15


UPDATE:  28th December 2015

Tis that strange twilight time of the year when we are not altogether sure whether we should still be making merry. I am presently looking despairingly at the carcass of a turkey and a slightly greenish tinged leg of ham and wondering when I can put it in the bin without committing sacrilege.  When I had my little dog, Barnabus Bubble, there was never any waste!  I always gave him credit as co-chef and chief taster.  He would faithfully guard the roasting turkey whilst I peeled sprouts and cried when ET went home.  Fortunately for myself and family nothing burned, because he was quite insistent on the regular basting and tasting (by himself) of course. 

But this is not a time for melancholy, it is time to wonder what next year will bring.  A time to make those aims, dreams and ambitions come to fruition.  I urge anyone with an hour to spare (and Netflix) to watch 'The Secret'.  The 'Law of Attraction' is very real, you literally can have anything you want.  The only person who can put a limit on your dreams, is you!

I want to get all those reluctant writers out of the closet!  I want them to abandon their inhibitions and get pen to paper.  Everything is valid, when I graduated as a mature student, I would sign my '2 extra pints please' notes to the milkman R.V. Hutton BA(Hons), lol.  There are so many ways in which you can create your own journals, your own personal letters to your descendants, things that may seem so trivial and inconsequential now, but that will mean so much to those of your bloodline in centuries to come.  

I want to tear down the snobbery that surrounds writing and journalism, we are ALL valid.  Simply scrawling '2 extra pints' makes each and every one of us a 'writer'.  Some writers are of course better than others.  There is no secret to it, writing is a craft like any other and one that be improved every time you embark on a new project.  Writers, like any other artist, weep buckets over their past works, because to them, it is never, ever, good enough. My own 'masterpiece' Constance, picked up by a former BBC producer, broadcast on Christmas Day and nominated for a Sony award, remains gathering dust on Amazon.  Why? Because I am scared that if I go back to it, I will change everything, and I don't know if that's a good thing or not!  There you go, an insight into the constantly troubled mind of a writer. 

To write well, you must be well read and well informed.  Reading feeds your vocabulary, every time you read a book or an article, parts of it will be stored in your brain, the way in which the author has articulated the sentence and expressed thoughts that are in harmony with your own, especially.  If you want your work to be read, you must create empathy with your audience.  When you put pen to paper, you must write stuff that you yourself like to read!  I unashamedly pinch from (pay tribute to) writers I love.  PG Wodehouse, Thorne Smith, Sue Townsend, Christopher Hitchens, heck, hundreds.  

Unfortunately, our snobbish society lauds those writers who preach from a lofty tower and who use big words and cryptic clues rather than the vernacular of their intended audience.  The same elitism applies to literature and academia as it does to art and music, the popular culture of the common people doesn't count. 

I want to tear down those walls, I want to reach out to those who dream of writing their own books.  I want to tell them that everything they write is valid and that grammar and their prowess (or lack thereof) with the English language will become charming with the years. And they will improve!  Writing, like anything gets better and better the more you do it.  

For those who have 'write book' on their New Year Resolutions List, I would urge them first of all to find their niche.  What do they like reading?  Whilst it is noble to admire the works of Chaucer, it is unlikely to rock the book shelves of Asda.  If you like sci fi, thrillers, detectives stories or romance, then use those genres to turn fact into fiction.  Actually, I might even write a book about how to write a book next year, who knows? 

Anyway, I wish you all a very Happy New Year, enjoy the remains of your Christmas goodies (or restock, lol) and brush up on the words to auld lang sine and Flower of Scotland (if applicable).  If you can start a conga line AND a revolution, I will raise a glass to you!  Cheers!     

 ______________________________________________

Merry Christmas to all my readers and dare I say, friends, and a huge thank you for sticking with me through the good times and bad - aw shucks.  Your contributions have been fantastic, so many thoughtful and insightful comments that have kept this blog, and my head, buzzing! 

As for what will happen with the McCann case next year.  Who knows?  The Christmas message from the parents lacks the confidence of previous years, though it does remind us about further virtues the McCanns have acquired. Perhaps they are hoping for some recognition in the New Year's Honours List.

They are trying to get the message across that they are positive, though they have little to back it up.  Their own little pat on the back for patience has more than a grain of truth.  How on earth can two parents who believe their child is alive and out there, find anything positive in the police search for her being wound down?  It defies reason and logic.  Anyway, I do not wish to be unkind, they have to live this pretendy existence, and I cannot think of a greater hell. 

As for the anti Christ and his little band of demons over the way, well, heck, I even hope they can stop poking the fires for a while and enjoy a bit of peace and goodwill.  As one insightful reader pointed out, Mr. Bennett should embrace his family before he embraces his God.  As for their fellow paranoid Gollum lookalikes in JATKY2, let's hope they have someone (anyone) around them close enough to trust with their names, lol. 

I'm afraid I have little sympathy for the frightened little critters hiding beneath their rocks, even Robert de Niro goes for a walk in the park. The only reason for their paranoia can be some sort of shame for the evil words they have spouted this past 8 years.  When they created their hideous online alter egos, they thought this case would quickly fizzle out and no-one would ever know about their despicable need to abuse strangers on social media.  They never thought they would be held personally responsible for their cruel and ill chosen words. What would their family, friends and employers think of them if they knew about their thuggish, anti-social behaviour online?  It was a fear that, arguably, drove Brenda Leyland to suicide.   

The death of Brenda Leyland exposed the dark underside to the Madeleine  McCann case, it became so much more than a publicity campaign, it had become a battlefield with real victims.  The onslaught I received following the Martin Daubney (not Sonia Poulton) article in the Sun, went beyond sanity. Apparently, one woman's mother wept!  I'm afraid I would have had an overwhelming urge to slap her and tell her to get a grip.  And no, you horrible little vipers, still no shame or regret.  (As if! lol,  But I do hope the more severely affected have now recovered!)

For me the past year has been a huge learning curve.  Sadly, I came to realise that the intentions of some antis were anything but honourable and now many are indistinguishable from the pros.  It's like the final scene in Orwell's Animal Farm, the pigs are finely dressed, walking upright and sharing brandies and cigars with the humans. Ce la vie.     

Anyway, again, many thanks to each and every one of you, old friends and new, and I hope you have the Christmas and New Year of your dreams.  May your turkeys be succulent, your roast potatoes crisp, and your sprouts crunchy (or not, depending on who wins the fight) and your gravy flavourful.  Enjoy your Christmas puds and chocolate cherry liquors (I will :) ) and good luck in your battles for the remote control!  Remember girls, one superhero film, = 3+ hours of Gone with the Wind, a glass of Bailys and a mince pie.  If there are any complaints remind them who was peeling sprouts at 2.00a.m. while they were singing 'It'll be lonely this Christmas'.  Tell them it will be especially lonely, if you are forced to watch football. I jest of course, be nice to each other, things may not always go to plan, but they usually work out anyway!  Merry Christmas.  xxx



Monday, 21 December 2015

DOES AUSTERITY BREED TERRORISM?


 
The only reason for austerity is the protection of the super rich. If they paid their taxes fairly, austerity could be wiped out overnight.  We are in a double dip depression, at least those trying to live on a minimum wage and minimum benefits are.  The £100million yacht business is going swimmingly.  There is no need for greed or hunger, this is manmade, there is plenty for everyone. 

The keepers of the Treasury who cause all this misery are now building walls around their castles and having their super cars reinforced with bullet proof glass.  They kind of know they may fall prey to marauding mobs, so an eventual move to a gated community is a given.  And the more you starve and piss people off the more likely it becomes. 

A government's duty should not only be to maintain a country just enough so that things keep ticking over, a government should be laying down foundations for that country's future.  It should be creating industry and it should be creating employment.  Fundamentally, it should be offering every generation hope for a better life. 

As a mature student I learned that countries can and do use war to boost their economies.  Who'd have thunk it (sic) - it was a reading of George Orwell's 1984 that switched those lightbulbs on.  For me, it has always begged the question, why can't the 'industry' created to destroy life, be used to improve life?  New industry creates new jobs, that creates wages (and spare cash) that revitalises the manufacturing and service industries.  It's the economy stupid.  And hey, it's the 21st century, where are the flying cars and the hover boards? Why are large sections of society still hungry and homeless? Why are the elderly and the sick being neglected?  Why are families queuing at food banks?  More now, than the last century.  We have the means and the manpower, but not the money, it seems.

We are stuck in a timewarp, because consecutive governments are failing to acknowledge that traditional working class, and now middle class, jobs are being wiped out by the new technology that already exists. Other options are available!  What country would not benefit from investing in science, technology, art and the health and education of it's growing population?  Philanthropic industries that will grow and expand naturally because the supply and the demand will never go away.   

Unfortunately, we are still driven by the Methodist work ethic that tells us we should be breaking rocks for the hell (or should that be heaven?) of it, or polishing our front door step, rather than dossing on the sofa watching the Peep Show. At some point, someone is going to have to say out loud, we have a lot more leisure time than we used to and we are living longer.  That is not a bad thing!  It wasn't God who said we should work our fingers to the bone, it was probably Abraham who needed an extra wing to his prefab pretty sharpish due to his fondness for all that begetting.  Not surprisingly, it has been used by every employer ever since, along with 'you'll get your rewards in the next life' in lieu of pay. Maybe we should be putting a lot more effort into appreciating this life, rather than pinning all our hopes on the next one. 

If people have hope and reasons to live, they have no need to become suicide bombers.  And this new breed of terrorism is coming from within our own societies, it is bred amid the discontented young people who have no future to look forward to.  Young people need a reason to believe, most if they are lucky will find their paths in life through education and will get the opportunity to discover ways in which to improve mankind rather than destroy it. 

ISIS are succeeding where other terrorist groups have failed, because through the internet they have as much access to the disaffected youth of the West as they do to those in their surrounding countries. Whilst they are using ancient scripture to re-educate the lost young, they are using modern technology to find them. 

But let's look at the big picture.  This government could, if it wanted, create millions of jobs.  The NHS was founded and set up in the aftermath of WWII.  A time of austerity if ever there was one.  Clement Attlee's Labour Party fought the 1945 election campaign promising the electorate full employment and a universal National Health Service.  They needed drastic measures for drastic times and the horror of war and man's inhumanity to man was fresh in their minds. They needed to focus on rebuilding society based on the altruistic aims the population had fought and died for.  They needed to restore the Nation's health, they needed Homes for Heroes, and they needed to make Great Britain strong again. 

If a present day government came out with a 'crazy' scheme like doubling the NHS and preparing for the massive influx heading its' way as the population continues to age, it would win an election in an instant.  It would boost the economy, it would create millions of jobs and it would make life a lot more comfortable for all of us.  And if it wanted to wipe out the National debt, it would legalise cannabis and get those growing it and distributing it into a legal, safer industry with all the tax revenue that entails. Cannabis clearly offers natural health benefits the pharmaceutical companies cannot manufacture in a laboratory, maybe therein lies the problem.   

But I digress, doubling the NHS would boost the country's morale and it would offer a hope that we haven't seen for decades.  Tony Blair (and I'm no fan) came into office on the promise of Education, Education, Education.  He offered hope to the masses. For the last few elections, none of the politicians have offered us hope. That's why Jeremy Corbyn was always going to win the leadership of the Labour Party.  He knows it doesn't have to be this way and he listens to the voters.  New Labour, the Tories and the Libdems had merged into one big deaf, mass of grey, who fight every election campaign on who can keep their head above water the longest.  No-one is saying they are working for a better future for all of us, they are telling us to shut up and paddle, or we will all drown. 

What hope is there for young people who have watched their parents struggle to keep a roof over their heads and food on their tables, and they are struggling still.  The internet teaches them enough to know that life can offer so much more (not for them) and their fears for the future are reinforced by the cycle of poverty that surrounds them.  They are easy prey to people who know how to reach their inner fears and desires, people who understand their need for goals and aspirations and people who know how to manipulate them for their own ends. 

At the moment they have little or no competition, because we as a society are failing to offer them anything better.  Their only hope of breaking the desolate future that awaits them is to join the queues to be auditioned by Simon Cowell. This brave new world is a simpering coward run by sour faced prophets of doom guarding all the treasure they have accumulated from the masses.  It's theirs now and they are hanging onto it.  


What they fail to understand is that we are not a group of individuals struggling to pay off a mortgage.  We are a nation and most of us have only got 3 score years and 10 (deduct several decades if you are poor, add if you are rich), and we are a nation who want better for our children. We should not be aiming to get by until retirement age when, if we are lucky, we can buy a small condo by the sea, we should be finding ways to speed up the process. 

Instead of teaching kids to work for change, we are teaching them to accept things as they are and shut up about it.  Because if we taught them they could have anything they wanted, we would have anarchy.  Parents don't tell their kids to follow their dreams, they tell them to set realistic goals because they think they can protect them from bitter disappointment.  And teachers daren't - I had one dim witted A2 student report me for teaching Marxism, though strictly speaking I was teaching the rise of fascism, we were studying Leni Riefenstahl at the time.

Sadly, it is not a joke, too many kids are falling through the net because they have no-one to talk to.  How many terrorist atrocities could be prevented if those angry, suicidal kids had counselling and mentoring services available to them?  ISIS are telling these kids they care.  We are telling them that we do not.  Sometimes, a kind word from a stranger can change the entire direction of a young, or even old, person's life. 

We should be offering our kids Paradise here on earth, not an airy fairy one with fluffy clouds and glaring lights when their ravaged bodies give out.  In terms of history, we have more now than our ancestors could ever have dreamed of.  They were the movers, shakers and music makers. They set off on voyages of discovery, they invested in education, art, science and technology and society evolved and adapted to the comfortable changes they brought. Those at the forefront of evolution understood that there was no profit to be had by keeping gas, electric, communication etc. to a select few, there was no reason why they should not be available to the masses.  Problems only arise when the select few want to keep all the goodies to themselves.

Creating new industry for the good of humanity is not rocket science.  Every public frontline service needs to be improved (it's the 21st century ffs) and every area of our lives could be made better.  And again, the good life doesn't just have to be for a select few.   

Too many kids born in the nihilistic nineties have nothing to believe in. And these are the kids we all need to watch out for.  They are easy prey for manipulative extremists who offer them a lifeplan (religion) that relieves them of responsibility for their actions in this life and Paradise and 70 virgins in the next.  A way in which to pay society back for the way it has treated them and their families. For many, converts especially, religion is their 'get out' clause. They can be any kind of arsehole they want because they are doing it in the name of God, or it was because demons tempted them. 

Britain may be Great at the moment, but the lack of investment will tell a different tale in the future.  It can only rest on the achievements of it's forbears for so long, great men and women who understood the need to invest in science, art, exploration etc, to improve the quality of life for everyone.  Men and women who did not have a fraction of the money that is available to this present government, yet who built an empire. 

Unless this government faces up to the reality that this punishment of the poor is a breeding ground for radical ideas and extremism the terrorism will continue, and dare I say it, probably escalate.  You only have to watch Jeremy Kyle or any 'Benefits' program to see that we have a rapidly growing underclass who have no futures.  It is that mind set we should be reaching out to, the ones who are disillusioned because no-one is listening to them.  The ones who need something to believe in.  We need to reach those who are vulnerable and we need to give them better options for the future before they strap on that suicide belt.

Sunday, 20 December 2015

MCCANNS NEW PRIVATE SEARCH

This Mirror headline makes two important announcements.  1)The McCanns do not accept the findings of Operation Grange  and 2)The Fund is not going to be wound up and the remainder given to charity

Going back to the ambiguous words of DCI Redwood at the beginning, Madeleine is alive, or sadly she is dead.  As there have been no appeals from Operation Grange for the public to search for a live Madeleine, since OG opened in a blaze of publicity, it appears they have settled on the latter.  Madeleine may not have left the apartment alive said DCI Redwood, a comment that directly implicates the parents, and one they did not dispute or challenge.  And this was accompanied by the very public digging up of the areas surrounding Apartment 5A.  Martin Brunt gamely tried to protect the parents innocence, by suggesting the abductor killed Madeleine in the apartment and then buried her in the immediate vicinity whilst the search was going on. Seriously, Martin, do you not care a shred about your own reputation?

If the McCanns were genuinely satisfied with the work of Operation Grange, they would not be launching a new search of their own - starting a new search of their own shows the same disdain for the work of the British police as it showed to the work of the Portuguese police before them.  It is not good enough for the McCanns because it has not given them the result they wanted.  The world looking for a live Madeleine and donating to their private Fund.

That they are launching a new investigation of their own screams that things are not going well for the McCanns in the official police investigations, Operation Grange have wound down, but there are no signs that the  Portuguese investigation will again be shelved.  The Portuguese investigation is of course crucial, only they have the power to arrest and prosecute this case, yet they rarely, if eve,r get a mention in the McCann press releases and they didn't get a mention in this one. 

More importantly, they have nothing of substance from Operation Grange to support their search for a live child and they have nothing from them that confirms their innocence or that points to an abduction having taken place.  The trolls on twitter are still spamming the McCann hashtag with 4 year old statements made by DCI Redwood when OG was launched, there has been nothing to support the McCanns' abduction claim every since.  If there had been, they would be using it now in their latest publicity campaign.

I didn't want to write anything mean before Christmas, but unfortunately the McCanns stated intention to continue this scam, leaves me with little choice.  The remaining cash in the Madeleine Fund is not going to a good cause, it will continue to be used to con gullible people and to sue those who challenge the wickedness of their actions.  Gerry and Kate are not going to accept the findings of the police in either country, and they are not going to retire to concentrate on their remaining children and their medical careers.  As Kate said, this is her job now.   Covering up the death of a child and conning the public is not an honourable profession, and bringing misery and fear to the former detective who searched for their child, is pure evil.  If they continue, so will I. 

Wednesday, 16 December 2015

FORUM CENSORSHIP

 
I used to feel (mildly) embarrassed by the amount of time I spent in forums and chat rooms.  It had a kind of hermit, loner, weirdo ring to it, I seemed to prefer cyber people to the real thing.  And I did.  They satisfied my need to talk endlessly about subjects that intrigued and fascinated me.  Subjects of little or no interest to my nearest and dearest. And quite right too.  When they are with me, I want to hear about what interests them and what they are up to. 

As I mentioned in a previous blog, my first tentative steps into forum world was like walking into a Roman Arena and saying no-one told me there would be lions.  Many get eaten alive on the first day.  The old hands who have been there from the beginning, look down on newcomers as if they were stray cats who may or may not be infested with fleas.  They have already formed their own little Gangs of New York with induction ceremonies for those who want to enter their inner sanctums.  Knocking on the door with a blade between your teeth and a dodgy wink gives automatic admission. 

The AOL Europe Board that was discussing the case of missing Madeleine McCann in 2007 was a free for all.  It probably went largely undiscovered because of it's curious name.  It was simply one of hundreds of specialist chat rooms that AOL hosted at that time and AOL began directing Madeleine discussion there. The beauty of it was, it was unmonitored and there were no admin.   

When I joined in September 2007, groups had already been formed, pros and antis, and every day was a bloody battlefield.  I kind of liked it, lol.  It was an opportunity to reply to all the injustices in the world that I see around me.  It gave me an opportunity to say 'hey, that's not right', and explain why it's not right.  I'm not one of the silent majority, nor have I ever wanted to be.  Prior to the internet I was a prolific writer of Mrs Angry letters to national newspapers and MPs (that I was mostly too lazy to post). 

I was happy to take on the Right Wing and the Fascists on the AOL Europe Board, (they were in the majority) and challenge their loony views.  I knew I had to don a suit of armour (borrowed from Henry VIII) before each visit, heck, I even encouraged the arrows by describing myself as a Marxist/Feminist, and my posts carried the tagline 'don't let the hand you hold, hold you down' (unknown).  I love to challenge antiquated ideas about feminism, religion, actually anything subversive and any subject not open for discussion at polite dinner tables. 

The Europe Board had a lot of established characters, some interesting and informative, some hilariously funny, some just plain spiteful and some who were completely off their trolleys.  One group were on a mission to clean the place up by introducing new rules and regulations that we were all to do adhere to.  They even began sending copies of our posts to Carter Ruck and threats to write to employers were frequent.  In retrospect, some of the pros probably were part of the official Team McCann.  Their tactics were exactly the same as those who compiled the death dossier.  

Whenever a newcomer questioned the abduction story, they were instantly surrounded by 5 or 6 pro dobermans snapping at their ankles until they gave up or better still, obliged them a sensational quote for a headline.  The pack would seek out perceived weaknesses such as mental health, disability, cancer, or problems with alcohol and drugs. All information carefully stored for future use when they went in for the kill. What I saw in the Europe Board certainly illustrated the dark, nasty side of the internet that everyone warns us about. 

The strangest part was, the most vicious trolls, were nothing more than bored housewives, ladies who lunch and ladies who peek out from behind net curtains in the shires.  Brenda Leyland was typical of the kind of people who follow and talk about the case  of Madeleine McCann anonymously online.  She wasn't a leather clad thug swinging knuckle dusters, she was just an ordinary middle aged lady.  

Some of these women appear to be bubbling away like volcanoes ready to blow.  All the anger and bitterness they hide so well in the real world, is unleashed in the alter egos they create to go online.  Outwardly, they are almost Mrs Bucket like, with their spick and span houses, yes dear husbands and solid British values. They have to put themselves up on those highly polished pedestals in order to look down at the rest of us. They probably have hair that stays rigid in a gale force wind, wear American tan tights and speak in squeaky little girl voices that stopped being cute when they got past the age of 6.  (Grown women who speak like little girls irritate me - I want to slap them). 

Some might ask why I stayed there.  I ask myself that all the time, lol.  As bad as the AOL board was, it did eventually find its level.  We had some great debates that went on long into the night and we had some great laughs. The main issue that reared its ugly head each day however, was censorship with lines being drawn between those who wanted rules, guidelines and some topics to be off limits and those, like me, who said go boil your head.         

Sadly, in most forums, once the discussion/debate begins to heat up, the thread is locked.  Admin taking the decision to send the naughty ones off to cool down whilst urging those who remain to play nicely.  Fortunately no-one on the Europe Board had that 'power' over anyone else.  Nor could they censor or remove posts they didn't like.  If they had, I probably would have started my blog much sooner than I did - I refuse to be bound!  I am sure in a previous life I was probably Joan of Arc (loopy enough) or the warrior(ess) Boudica , maybe even the Spartan wife of Gerard Butler (I can dream :) ).  As a little girl growing up, there were very few female role models to look up to.  But that is another feminist subject for another day, but got to say, loving the new Jessica Jones series where a female, for once, is empowered!

When the AOL boards closed down, I wandered into CMoMM.  It took me a long time to actually join in the discussion, because even then, it had ferocious guard dogs in the form of Aguila and Plebgate and those who worshipped at the altar of Tony patrolling the borders.  Once in, I quickly learned that I would have to be inventive if I were to stay within house rules.  I convinced myself to hang on in, because I wanted to be there when the truth about Madeleine's disappearance finally broke.  And there have been many times over the years, when the more optimistic of us have seen an end in sight.  

I joined some of the Facebook groups, but my commitment fears extend just as much online as they do in the real world and I am reluctant to sign up for anything.  And once again, my carefully thought out and non libellous contributions were swiftly removed by those who believe they know what is best for their members.  Most groups it would appear, eventually become one tracked and exclusive.  It is inevitable if you do not permit alternate views.  For the sociologists out there, it is probably textbook stuff, but it's enlightening nevertheless.  

Gang mentality sadly, flourishes at every level of society.  It exists in boardrooms and genteel coffee mornings just as much as it does in the back streets of Peckham.  The gang leaders may not have tear drops tattooed on their cheeks but their victims are just as abundant. Gang mentality begins in the playground, several kids gather together and one or more are excluded. The isolated child acting as a warning as to what will happen to those who don't conform to the group.  It is a brutal lesson, but it is one we should remember. Should add gang mentality is prevalent in organised religions too. 

Unfortunately, owners and admins of forums and facebook groups are trying to keep the majority of their contributors happy - an impossible task. They censor and remove posts because they don't want any friction in their forums.  Well ho hum, if you've got no friction, you have got nothing to talk about!  And isn't it a bit strange that those constantly calling for peace are in the thick of every row?

There is nothing wrong with having a difference of opinion.  What a boring world this would be if we all thought and acted the same!  And what a freaky world it would be if we all remained static, having the same views at 90, as we did when we were 20!  Those with their opinions set in stone have called a halt to their education, they have limited their world to the tunnel vision they see through their blinkers.  They would be sad, if they were not so cruel. 

Unfortunately, on forums these malcontents are mostly successful, because they achieve what they set out to do.  Halt discussion.  Especially in the case of Madeleine McCann - in the early days, every discussion about the abduction was swooped on by patrols of McCann dobermans supporters claiming a)Goncalo Amaral was lying, b)the dogs were lying c)your just a loon, go take your meds. 

As for a new forum, I don't think it would be for me.  Posting in a forum or facebook group is like typing with one hand tied behind my back and I'm tired of it to be honest.  I want to 'talk' directly to my readers, and I want them to be able to 'talk' directly to me.  I don't want their posts or mine to be hacked about by someone in the middle.  I know that sounds a bit harsh on those who have put up with me, but I hate to hold back on what I am saying for fear of offending anyone.  Here, I don't have to.  When people ask me for the truth, that is what they get!  I want to offend people, I would prod them with a large fork if I could!  And people who demand the right not to be offended deserve it the most!  I want to make them sit up think!  My regular readers know what they are letting themselves in for, and if the newly offended return for more, they have no-one to blame but themselves! :) 

Ps.  Regarding the glitches over the weekend.  I inadvertently changed my blog from an open forum into Google+ and lost all my comments!  I then went into meltdown pressing buttons galore and making the situation a zillion times worse :(  Fortunately, son performed an intervention and order was restored, lol.  To the conspiracy theorists already discussing the notion that I removed all the comments so I could furiously edit them before putting them back.  Seriously?

  
   


   

Wednesday, 9 December 2015

FORSOOTH HIDEHO! - UPDATE SUNDAY 13/12/15

UPDATE SUNDAY 13/12/15

Bennett and Verdi's fiendish plans provide me with no end of merriment on a Sunday morning. 
 
Bennett is now producing evidence that I am a pro in disguise, no less, a sneaky double agent, confirmed by my failure to spit, swear and carry a pitchfork.  He is building a case by providing evidence of my kind words, no dastardly compassionate remark will remain unturned. 
 
The message is clear Mr. B.  In order to disbelieve the McCanns, you must hate and disrespect them, and if Mr. B finds any evidence of kindness or decency in any of your posts, past and present, you will be exposed and shamed.  Get it! You certainly won't be allowed in the inner circle.  For that you will need a white hood, rudimentary woodwork skills, a few 10 by 2's and a large box of matches. You may also have to supply a cup of your blood. 
 
'It's nothing but a random selection of words thrown together for effect' says Verdi.  Well deh!  It is an example of Mr. Bennett's copying and pasting skills at it's best, especially when he is going for a guilty without trial verdict.  It goes without saying, there is nothing he has selected that I am ashamed of. 

My assumed literary prowess is a dangerous weapon when in the WRONG hands proclaims Verdi.  Like giving a loaded weapon to a child.  I am not sure if he/she is cussing God for not giving him/her such a weapon, or cussing the likes of me for having it.  Either way, I'm kinda flattered and feeling a bit like Mozart to Bennett's Salieri. Now there's something to put your teeth in for Verdi!  ha ha 
 
In any event, I am putting out the wrong message!  It is not enough to disbelieve the McCanns, you must hate them with a passion and you must be prepared to pry into the lives of anyone vaguely connected to them without question.   
 
This case is not about the mysterious death of a child, the injustice of our Government interfering in a criminal investigation in Portugal, the evil pursuit of an ex detective, or the sinister way in which people with great power used the name of Madeleine to usher in new laws on Freedom of the Press, new powers to control the internet and a new bogeyman to frighten the plebs. 

The more discerning McCann sceptics are still beavering away on the shutters, Smithman, the last photo and butler in the pantry with the candlestick. They will only discuss the files.  I think we best leave them to it!








UPDATE 12/1215

I see Tony Bennett has been beavering away to find evidence that proves, err, that I am not now nor have I ever been a 'hater' or a 'pitchforker'.  Why thank you Mr. Bennett, that is what I have been saying all along! 

He can't find any spite or nastiness from myself towards the parents, nor can he find libellous accusations of murder, paedophilia, swinging sex parties, cloning or gawd knows what else, because there aren't any!  (honesty and integrity)

I haven't stated categorically what happened on that night, because, err, how the feck would I know?  I wasn't there and I'm not a detective.  Back in the real world, I accept that I am no more than an onlooker and I find the idea of running a counter investigation to the police, ludicrous.  It is also creepy and sinister to pry into the lives of strangers online, but that doesn't stop them either.  They crossed the line from people concerned with justice for a small child, to a mob of vigilantes seeking victims to 'research' a long time ago. 

What exactly do these people hope to do with all their 'research'?  I doubt they will be called as expert witnesses for the prosecution - though the idea of Bennett being strapped to a trolley Hannibal Lector like and wheeled into a Courtroom is quite an amusing daydream. 

Realistically, all these theorists can get out of this case, will be a book (or several volumes) and a documentary (or several volumes).  The donations side never really took off.  There will undoubtedly be an unholy scramble to publish books once Amazon lift their embargo, there are many writers who have devoted a lot of time to this case, myself included, who may or may not write books of their own. It will be fiercely competitive, with those believing they have the divine right to the top spot because a)they have sacrificed the most and b)they have done the most 'work', thrashing about on the floor screaming 'its not fair'.  Some have started already as we can see from a quick glance at CMoMM (the cesspit), lol.   

I will make no bones about it.  I want to write to Kate's book. If she reads my blog, and I am pretty sure she does, she will get the message that I am trying to understand the reasons behind everything that has happened.  My interest in this case has nothing to do with hate. And again, thank you Mr. Bennett for confirming that.   
 
__________________________

Oh forsooth Lizzie HideHo, have you partaking in the fruit of the vine?  Your gushing tribute to Mr. Anthony Bennett fair soured me cornflakes! 

No one doubt's Mr. Bennett's Methodist work ethic.  He clearly 'works' from dawn to dusk, but tis the content of that 'work' that causes problems for myself and others.  He has not outed, exposed or shamed you (yet), but he will. You are female and blonde (a tool of the devil) and there is probably an entire filing cabinet devoted to you. Myself and Sonia have several, lol. 

The work of Mr. Bennett is to bring misery to others.  Where is the honour in that?  His actions in the early days of this case. when no-one knew what was going on, were abominable.  He was hounding and persecuting Kate and Gerry McCann in the same way, he has hounded and persecuted people all his adult life, take a look at his entry on Wiki.  The reasons for his involvement in this case are questionable to the say the least - he set up a 'Foundation' using the name of the missing child ffs! If 'GoFundMe' had been around at that time, he would have been minted. 

Mr. Bennett doesn't so much want Justice for Madeleine, as he wants fire, brimstone and himself as the worshipful head of a new loony justice league with a paypal button.  He, and others like him, use his 20,000 hits a day forum, to put the victims of their stalking on public trial.  That some of their victims are witnesses in a highly sensitive, ongoing police investigation, should outrage all of us.  It's just not cricket Lizzie, can you not see that? 

These witnesses are being investigated, put on trial, and pronounced guilty on a public forum where they have no right of reply.  That they have been able to maintain a dignified silence in the face of all those smears, is a tribute to their good characters, they have had much to contend with.   

Some antis, like yourself HideHo have become so entrenched in looking at the finer details of this case, that they have lost all sense of reason.  Restricting all discussion to the files and nothing else, will do that.  We have no right to select targets from this case and then to analyse their lives and their motives.  No moral right that is.  Just because you can do something, doesn't mean you should. 

The people that you, Bennett and the cesspit are scrutinising, are very real.  They are private individuals drawn into this case through no fault of their own. People who have done their public duty and co-operated with the police. They have never sought publicity and they have never sold their stories.  The message is loud and clear, they want to be left alone. They don't want to join in your games. 

As for Mr. Bennett's recent  Express victory.  I didn't see an apology so much as a correction, however, I will happily take that back if TB gets a thank you from Goncalo. 

I have much respect for your videos HideHo, but not very much for your judgement at the moment.  Sometimes in trying to do the right thing for everyone, you end up tied in knots.  Mr. Bennett's motives are not altruistic, they are sinister and malevolent.  Selecting victims from the net and putting them on public trial is evil in every language and on every continent Lizzie. That is why CMoMM is a cesspit HideHo, because it has deemed our public services and our democracy worthless, and set up a Court of its own.   

Thursday, 3 December 2015

FORUMS - ENTER AT YOUR OWN RISK


 
Bleeding forums, where do I start?  I was one of those innocents when I first stumbled onto forums, or chat rooms as they used to be called. I'd had the internet since 1999, but it was much slower then, and I didn't have to time to take anything other than a peek now and then.  I was a mature student with a frantically busy life, an annoying teenager, a pesky mutt (Barnabus Bubble) and gall stones, and the fast moving chat rooms were impossible to keep up with up. 

As I had more time and got more internet savvy, I ventured further.  Although I am happily single, I often wanted a bit of company, although my little dog had a hearty appetite for our 'Dine in for Two's', he wasn't much of conversationalist. The best he could manage at the end of a meal was ''ere, wasn't one of those puddings supposed to be mine?'.  He only really had two subjects, food and walkies as in 'I'm sure the chicken's done, go take a look, come on, I'll show you where it is or I've been watching it for 2 hours', and 'here's my lead, get your arse off that sofa, that raging storm outside will be great fun'. 

For me the social side of the internet was phenomenal. Then, as now, I was blown away by the fact that I could talk to anyone about any subject I wanted.  I started with baby steps.  I like books, so I looked for book chats.  Unfortunately, I didn't find a Bloomsbury Group deconstructing Mary Shelley's Frankenstein, I found a hot and heavy group from the 40s/50s discussing Stephensen's Rocket with some randy stragglers from Pub Chat. 

My breakthrough came with the Celebrity Big Brother chat room, if I had thought the message boards a trifle brusque, the chat rooms were ferocious!  It was the year Michael Barrymore and George Galloway were in the Big Brother house, so there were ding dongs all round. I couldn't understand how people could become so emotionally involved in a program on the telly, to the point where they were calling the police and their lawyers.  Then, as now, I found it most of it highly amusing, but I could also see the dark and sinister side. 

I will not tell a lie, all that fighting down in the mud and the blood and beer gave me a buzz! It was like a more genteel version of Fight Club (maybe not so genteel), where I knew sure as eggs is eggs I could always find someone else in the mood to go ten rounds.  To be honest, that is probably one of things I miss most about my ex, he was always ready, willing and able to partake in a verbal or physical spar.  A rowdy game of Trivial Pursuit could often end in police being called and a Restraining Order (a sparrow HAS got 3 toes you eejit!).  We would have been great on Jeremy Kyle!    

But I jest, most of the people I encountered in the forums were much like myself.  People looking for a bit of company and a good giggle and it appalled me watching those I liked and who's views I wanted to hear more of, being driven away by gangs of marauding malcontents who's mission it was to stop debate and all or any signs of joviality.  Ever since I was a little kid, I have stood up to bullies. Not only could I stand up for myself, I could stand up for others too.  I could talk the hind legs off a donkey and when all else failed, I could punch as good as any boy! 

The more the gangs tried to drive people away, the more I dug my heels in.  One of the pluses of losing everything, is that you literally have nothing left to lose!  I can kind of see why George Orwell traded his posh suit with a tramp and headed to London and Paris.  Having nothing can be incredibly liberating, it makes you wonder why you fought so hard to hang onto stuff in the first place. 

Unfortunately many people see spending hours on the internet talking to strangers as kind of weird and sad, and they have to pretend that they don't do it.  It implies that you have no life and nothing better to do. These ideas are ridiculous of course, chatting on the internet is no different to chatting over the garden fence, but a zillion times better. You can actually choose who you speak to, tell them your name, or not, and move swiftly on if you get bored. Millions of  people who would otherwise be alone and isolated can now connect with others who share their interests, rather than their nearest and dearest who are probably telling them to give it a rest. We should be enjoying it, rather than covering it up.

For the first time in history we are not restricted to selecting our life partners from neighbours' offspring or the chance meeting of soulful eyes across a dance floor.  I am a confirmed singleton (no one will have me, lol), but for those who's mojo's are still active, they no longer have to make do with the nice but dim or the slutty professional wife looking for more sparkly rings for her toes. 
 
But back to the strange world of the forums.  In 2007 specialist forums sprung up everywhere, it was before Facebook completely took over.  My encounter with the CBB board, had left me somewhat shellshocked and I had avoided social media for a while.  However, the Madeleine case had sparked my interest, and AOL were directing those wishing to discuss the case towards the Europe Board.  The main commentators on the case posted on the Mirror readers comments.  Most were very aggressive and had little time for newbies, they were firmly entrenched.  Other National newspapers had similar comment boards - but all were closed down at the end of 2007/beginning of 2008. 

The most prominent board that sprung out of the 'Nationals' was The Three Arguidos.  I joined, but I rarely attempted to post. Even then they took themselves far too seriously. I stuck with the Europe Board because no-one was in charge, even though takeovers were threatened daily, lol, and no-one could censor me!  Any sane person would have run for the hills, but I got a weird sort of buzz out of it.  I'd go to bed thinking 'ah, so, it's a fight you want!' lol.  I didn't want to get into any sort of actual fisticuffs with them I hasten to add, I just wanted to hand out the occasional clip round the ear, or a complete body slam if my opponent was a fascist.  My profile was Cristobell, Marxist, Feminist,  so I was asking for it really, the lol, came later. 

No doubt my critics will make much of my 'sick' need for conflict. The Freudians might say I need to relive my childhood trauma over and over so I can make things right.  I am still fighting the same injustices I saw then as I see now, and I still can't shut up about them. The people I stood up to were the bullies, people who believed their chosen path in life real or imagined, should be the same for everyone else. 

Some were pure evil, they latched onto and logged sensitive issues that would bring the most pain to their targets. Disability, loneliness, depression, drugs, alcohol, all the things we should have been talking about, were strictly taboo.  I have always been honest about my own bipolar, I prefer to challenge the piss takers head on than hide away from them.     

I first ventured onto the AOL Europe Board in September 2007.  It had been running for several months, and sides had been taken! The McCanns had never been out of the news and my poor ill mum and I were following the case.  I kept wondering why the parents were lying and making light of the distance between the apartment and the tapas bar.  And why they showed no signs of guilt.  It niggled me. 

The AOL boards were a phenomenon.  completely unmonitored, uncensored and on occasion a complete free for all.  Antis posting with Pros, and the ratio was about 50:50.  A good friend of mine, a psychiatrist, took a look there one day and asked if I was completely insane. I'm afraid I had to say yes!  I was completely addicted.  It was my first port of call every morning and every break time! Even the most trivial of arguments were blown completely out of proportion. I met people I would never encounter or socialise with in the real world, and the opportunity to tell those who's views I found obnoxious and narrow minded, exactly what I thought of them.  Albeit, I tried to do it in the nicest possible way. 

I have never been afraid of the trolls in a physical sense, they are a bit like vampires, they can only suck on your blood if you allow them in.  When I shut my laptop, they all go back to their underground coffins.  I give them as little or as much of my time as I choose. 

Bizarrely those of us on the Aol boards became 'friends' of sorts. The lines remained firmly divided between anti and pro, but the bitching often turned into uproarious exchanges of banter that led to much hilarity.  Hundreds came and went, but there were 20 or 30 of us who posted (bickered) regularly and we were all equally hooked, not just to the McCann case but to arguing with each other.  And of course after 5 years we had to become more creative with our insults! 

Some of them were I fear, criminally insane.  Especially, the fanatically right wing who thought the muslims were to blame for everything. Those who worshipped the Drs. McCann, were just weird.  They lived fantasy lives in cuckoo land acting out their Perry Mason moments, where they prove beyond reasonable doubt that the butler did it with the candlestick in the pantry. 

I don't have any regrets for the years I wasted on the Europe boards.  They gave me an insight into human behaviour I could never have found anywhere else. Mostly, I remember the laughter, and I remember having access to a friendly ear any time of the day or night. As an insomniac, manic depressive and regular caller to the Samaritans, it became a lifeline for me, depending on who was online, I good have a good giggle, a cosy heart to heart, an in depth debate or a full blown street fight.  

The Europe Board, that became Penny Stocks, then Ya Gotta Laugh, was the wild West of the internet.  There were no monitors, regulators or admin.  It was a free for all, no-one could be banned and no-one could take charge, but it found it's own, albeit very low, level.  The potty mouths and the name callers got little attention unless they could say something substantial, and of course, they couldn't. Cloning was a regular occurrence and I had dozens; Cristohell, Cristobella, just about every variation of Cristobell you could imagine, lol. Many of my enemies have been around for a very long time, and I am still laughing. 

I don't know if the McCanns kept their 'big gun' monitors for the 3 Arguidos and the organised groups that emerged out of the closure of the Mirror comments, but it seemed that way. I'm guessing AOL (America OnLine) was beyond the control of Clarence, so they ignored it.  The eejits trying to bring Law and Order to AOL, were mostly uniform fantasists acting out their dreams of a Fourth Reich.  When AOL finally closed their chatrooms, I found my way to the Jill Havern forum and that was when things took a much darker turn, but I will save it for another day.   

For myself, I have no desire to join any more forums, I find it laborious trying to write with a censorship sword hanging over me.  It is impossible to please all the people all the time, and writing shouldn't be like that.  I have no problem whatsoever with people disagreeing with me.  And they have as much freedom as I have to write whatever they want in response.  I don't claim to be right, God forbid, I am always open to different opinions, I welcome different perspectives. Those miffed that I won't published their comments, simply need to cut out the personal abuse and put forward some valid points.  There is no need to be rude. 

In the case of Madeleine McCann, I would love to be wrong, but I haven't yet heard a single argument that persuades that I am, or that there is even room for doubt.  And bizarrely, all that threatening, stalking and name calling hasn't changed my mind either. 





          

Sunday, 22 November 2015

AN IDIOT'S GUIDE TO RELIGION



I see Bennett is currently tubthumping and salivating at the thought of the Rapture, lol, He's got a first class ticket to Paradise and the rest of us are gonna fry.
 
Radical Christians are no different to radical muslims, they too believe they are right, dead right.  Their motives are not philanthropic, they want their place next to God and a front row seat to watch their enemies burn. They are just as much at war as ISIS, 'onward Christian soldiers' and all that. 

Since time began, religion has been used by every society in order to control the masses.  To put it bluntly we are 'herd' animals, we flock together, we are more comfortable in a pack, we are safer and our survival depends on it. 

In order to live as a group, ancient societies had to have rules and such is human nature, deciding on what those rules should be and who should administer them began a conflict that lasted for all eternity. They quickly realised that whoever took charge and made the rules could enjoy the fruits of others' labour, without having to do any actual 'toiling' themselves. 

However, man is frail.  His time on this earth is limited and the lifespan of tyrants and despots is especially variable because once you have got all the 'spoils', others will try to take them away from you.  Ancient man needed Rules carved in stone, ones that didn't need updating every 6 months and with all that chiselling, who could blame them. 

So how did God come about?  Well, if you go back even further, somewhere between walking upright and making tools, those big old Neanderthal heads were trying to make sense of the goodies that grew on trees and how much fun it was eating rotting grapes.  They wanted, neh needed, someone to thank for their bountiful harvests, and someone to praise so the next ones would be even better.  Clearly the amazing world around them couldn't possibly be the work of man, no man had that power. They looked upon the changing seasons as being the work of a God or several Gods.  'God' became their explanation of the world around them, if they behaved as God wanted them to, they would be rewarded, if they didn't, they would be punished.   

Of course, after a few thousand years they realised that the Autumn follows Summer follows Spring etc, whatever they did, and that sacrificing 10 goats and their firstborn wouldn't ward off the volcano that was about to erupt or the hurricane that was heading their way. They didn't dare displease the Gods by blaming them for man's misfortune, they had to point the finger of blame at each other.  

Once the 'beliefs' set in, society was under control.  The fact that God has only appeared to raving lunatics and people away with the fairies has never mattered a jot to the believers.  They choose to live the life God (via man) has mapped out for them rather than freefall like the rest of us.  They prefer to plough the fields and gather whilst singing the Lord's praises and dreaming of all the goodies to come in the next life.

The religious are the team players.  They will work their knuckles to the bone for the good of others and they will do it all in God's name because they don't seek praise for themselves. Heaven forbid.  They teach humility and sacrifice, basically all the things that will ensure the populace will continue ploughing the fields and gathering without complaint. And they will teach their children to do the same too. Religion is largely responsible for the social demographic into which we are born.  We are the result of decisions and choices made by our predecessors.  Sadly, religion teaches us to know and accept our place in the world.  The rich man in his castle, the poor man in the field.  Blessed are the meek and those who bring gifts to the altar.  

Such is life, the wants and desires of the Good Lord (or God) usually coincides with the wants and the desires of the leaders and the wannabe leaders and having 'God' on your side usually swings the vote if you want to annihilate certain sections of mankind.  If you can whip up a big enough crowd up into a frenzy, you can bring down the walls of Jericho. 

Mostly, I don't have a problem with religion, if people want to pray or believe in a higher power, that's up to them, whatever gets you through the night.  Personally, I prefer to be in awe at the achievements and creativity of mankind, even those of the religious nuts.

For me, the scary thing is the fact that religion still dominates the 21st century.  And the fact that we actually take religious people seriously and allow them to dictate the way in which we live defies logic.  I am as aghast that the word of the Pope still has influence over millions worldwide in the same way that the word of ISIS now reaches out to the radical Muslims.  How many people in third world countries died of Aids because of the Pope's ruling on condoms?  

Religion is the root of all evil and sadly it is not contained within small churches or mosques where the deluded gather to worship their unseen entity of choice.  They demand that the rest of us join them or face God's wrath in the form of manmade punishments.  Their faith that God will punish us in the next life is however pretty slim, so it is their duty to ensure we suffer in this one.  All religions are about suffering, they teach obedience, sacrifice and humility, human traits that make the masses governable.  

Happily most people can now see that the promise of a reward in the next life is a ploy used by unscrupulous employers to pay low wages, and by religious fanatics who use the gullible to blow up their enemies. In a logical, humanistic world, religious zealots would be in strait jackets and given psychological help for their paranoid delusions, but in this world, they become leaders.  Not just in the unstable Middle East, but also in the West - George Bush held regular prayer meetings in the White House and Tony Blair is now more Catholic than the Pope.  Understandable perhaps, when you are killing hundreds of thousands of innocents with weapons of mass destruction, you better be doing in God's name and not your own.  Bush and Blair like the ISIS terrorists have also claimed in their place in Paradise.  When you use God's name for mass murder it is not only acceptable, it is to be applauded.  

Sadly, we atheists are caught in the middle of all the crazies, not only must we tolerate them, we must respect them, obey their laws and die and when they go for the mass murder option.  An option that is becoming more frequent as these ancient scriptures are adapted for the 21st century by Islamists and Christians alike.  And therein lies the insanity.



     

Sunday, 15 November 2015

VIVE LA FRANCE, YOU DID NOT DESERVE THAT



When I woke up yesterday morning, I watched Sky News in horror as the terrible events in Paris unfolded.  As a manic depressive I sometimes avoid too much reality as it can easily tip me over the edge.  Sadly, it was impossible to look away, and it was impossible to shut off the fear and terror I felt for those innocent people who's lives were being blown apart by such incomprehensible evil. 

Why, why, why?  The people ISIS targeted were mostly young, multicultural, liberal free thinkers, people who may even have been persuaded to their cause, or who would have at least listened to them.  The people killed and injured were out having fun.  Was it the 'fun' aspect that troubled them the most? 

I don't pretend to understand the troubles in the Middle East, does anyone?  But I do know that for too long the lives of those in the Middle East have mean't very little to the people of the 'West'.  Two days before Paris, a bomb went off in Beirut killing 43, almost as if it were a rehearsal for the atrocity that was to come.  The Beirut bombs didn't grab everyone's attention.  The Paris ones did.

For most of us, we don't really care what happens in a far away land, neither we, nor our ancestors divided those lands and riches up for ourselves, and besides, we've got enough troubles of our own. The attacks on Paris have brought the terrorism of the Middle East directly into our living rooms. It could have been any of us, or any of those we love. We have to take notice, ignoring it is no longer an option. 

Fortunately, most of us are not faced with the terrible decisions that the world leaders now face.  How to bring it to an end. They are dealing with psychopaths and sociopaths who are using na├»ve young 'westerners' (one was only 15 ffs) to blow up everything they hate.  You can bet your life that the suicide vests are not made to fit the aged evil bloated fat cats who instigate these attacks for their own grubby ends.   

For the 'rational' world leaders, how the hell do you choose one murderous fanatic over another in order to maintain world peace?  Do they even listen to the rebel factions?  Are there no peacemakers among them?  Can the West really step in without being accused of seeking the spoils of war for themselves? And why should it be the decision of the West?  Ultimately Syria must rule itself with the best interests of the majority at heart.  

I share Paris's grief, anger and need for retribution. This can never happen again, these evil people must be stopped.  However, it is heart breaking that the people who will suffer the most, will be those fleeing the terror.  Already, the media have picked up on one terrorist being a refugee who arrived in a boat. Conveniently ignoring the fact that most of these suicide bombers are nationals of the countries they are blowing up. They are disaffected youths who have been lured into war games because they need something to believe in, even if it is batshit crazy. 

Sadly, it will also too increase the simmering racism that lurks in every society and it will give fodder to the far right extremists who need little excuse to attack their neighbours. I hope people bear in mind that we are in the middle of a humanitarian crisis, one that has the potential to reach the scale of a holocaust.  We need to remember that the people arriving on our shores are people just like us.  Mums and dads who love their kids and grannies just as much as we love ours.   

The extremists who shattered the lives of the people of Paris are the same extremists these desperate people are fleeing.  They don't want the kind of 'rule' Assad or ISIS (ISIL) are offering, they want a rational world where they will be valued as human beings.  It is not the number of terrorists who are coming into the West as refugees, so much as the number of their own disaffected youth who are flying out to the Middle East to train as terrorists and suicide bombers. 

The world leaders, Francois Hollande especially have my deepest sympathy at the moment, and if I were religious, they would have my prayers too.  Heck, they have them anyway, so too the people of Paris affected by this terrible atrocity. Vive la France, and Viva the French people, they did not deserve that, no-one does. 

 

Saturday, 14 November 2015

HIDING BEHIND ANONYMITY



Unfortunately, for Verdi, Aquila, Snook, Plebgate,  Bluebag, Aiyoyo, Tigger and the rest of the anonymous cesspit hardcore, they have no back stories.  Are they male/female, old, young, parents, grandparents?  Who are they? Why have they been discussing the minutiae of the Madeleine case for 8 years? 

One of the joys of the internet and chatting with strangers online is that it gives every single one of us the joy of being whoever we want to be.  We can invent alter egos from any socio economic or educational background we want, even if they are just better and more successful versions of ourselves.  We can figuratively stand on an orange box at Hyde Park Corner and tell the world where it is going wrong, without fear of anyone pointing and laughing, or worse, talking behind our backs, because in our imaginary worlds, we always win. 

I have no problem with people creating alter egos, in fact, I would encourage it.  The real world can be shit at times.  This is one of the rare occasions when depressive, struggling writers are at an advantage, we can wander off for a while with our fictional characters.  With the internet, anyone can be anyone and it would be wrong to say there is no fun side to it.  I used to belong to a forum where, on the rare occasion when hostilities ceased, we would hold a 'masked' ball and attend as any character we wanted, past or present - the results were hilarious.  The insults continued, but they were much more witty, nearer to the knuckle and absolutely hilarious.   When you are wearing a mask you can say anything you want.

Sadly, many use the mask of anonymity for anything but fun.  They use the mask to unleash their crueller, darker natures.  They believe that if they make someone else feel bad, they will somehow, magically, feel better.  They feed off the pain of others.  They cannot tell their boss she is a cunning, manipulative bitch, but they can use those words against a stranger online - and if they are part of a group of similarly minded malcontents, they will be applauded and encouraged to say it again. Birds of a feather flock together - like the vultures from Jungle Book. 

Unfortunately, among the 'antis' there are sinister characters desperate, to hide their identities, why? Are they ashamed of what they do?  Do they have ulterior motives? If they believe they are right, and they do, why not state their arguments using their real names?  They are not just writing the occasional letter to a newspaper or blog, they are part of a sustained 8 year campaign 'for justice'? If they believe that what they are doing is right, why are they ashamed of it?  I have no doubt whatsoever that the parents are involved, ergo my conscience is clear. 

During the time they have been holed up in the cesspit, dozens of facebook groups have opened with thousands of people openly criticizing the McCanns in their own names and surviving.  Fear of Team McCann is no longer a factor.  They don't want to be harassed.  That could be fair enough, if they were posting without harassing others.  But they are not.  They are selecting named targets and tearing them to shreds, all the while protecting themselves with anonymity. 

Whilst I respect that many people have genuine reasons for remaining anonymous when commenting on this case (it can seriously affect your life), I have no respect for those cowards who use anonymity to hurl abuse at others.  Does their thuggish behaviour cross over into the real world?  If it does then they are completely devoid of any social graces whatsoever - or in words they can understand: 'you couldn't take them anywhere'.  As 'bad' as my parents were (I thought they were great!),  They oozed charm and good manners, even when my mother told someone to fuck orf, she did it politely. 

I know acknowledging their weird behaviour sets my own band of stalkers off into a frenzy, but what the heck, all's quiet on the western front.  Strangely, I have seem to have gathered more obsessive anonymous stalkers than most.  I even have entire blogs devoted to me!  Scarily, I can only see what they write publicly, I shudder to think what they say in their members only bits. 

Happily, beyond thinking they are weird (and hoping SY are keeping a close eye), they bother me not.  They have actually given me another area of interest to study.  Adding to my 'expert' portfolio, lol, I now know everything there is to know about trolling and psychotic group behaviour.  I honestly don't care who these people are, other than natural curiosity. I only have control over the way in which I react to their behaviour, sometimes it bothers me, mostly it doesn't, but as far as I am concerned, the police have better things to do. 

I am intrigued as to what their goals are?  I try not to discourage unrealistic goals, but if they hope to have me 'removed from the net', they are going to have as much luck as Sisyphus.  I am not abusive.  I don't write anything libellous - I'm a wordsmith and a former legal secretary who spent over a year working in the pedantic, semantic 'kill me now' Reinsurance  Division.  It's the reason I am still here and others are not.  No letters from Carter Ruck.

Anonymity can be used for good or for bad.  Fortunately, most people use it for good.  And in this crazed brave, capitalist new world, simply commenting on, or liking a Facebook page can see your inbox and social network sites flooded with adverts designed specifically to your own individual lifestyle.  In my case, Fat, Fifty and funeral plans.  We, as much as the vast network we log into are commodities, our names being traded for undisclosed sums.  Life is now a numbers game. 

Rather than wear a tin foil hat forever more, I personally have decided to live with it because I refuse to live in fear.  And realistically, fear is the only other option.  I'm not going to type with sun glasses and gloves on or dress like Secret Squirrel to avoid the CCTV cameras when I go out to buy a loaf of bread - freedom for me means living as I choose, not the way someone else chooses for me.  I can think of nothing worse than living in fear of what other people think.  It is a tragedy that so many people allow that fear to crush their dreams. They give up, even though they don't have to.  I once attended a student awards ceremony, where one of the recipients was a 90 year old lady who received her BA(Hons) Degree - her's was the longest standing ovation of the evening! 

Many people reach the level that they have set for themselves and stay there.  Especially if it gives them the comfortable and contented lifestyle they want.  Sadly for them, to achieve one goal, they have had to abandon others.  For example, the wife and kids wouldn't be too impressed if hubby  wanted to wear a Princess ballgown and a tiara to the kids' school parents evening or mum wanted to go find herself in a Buddhist monastery in the Himalayas for 6 months.

For most of us, our lives and dreams are restricted by our responsibility to others.  And that is as it should be.  It makes us human and we wouldn't have it any other way.  We should care for each other.  But equally, we shouldn't supress our own dreams and desires.  I think the idea that once you have kids, you should shelve all your own hopes and ambitions is absurd.  Some unenlightened folk, usually young working class parents, believe their lives are over, everything must now be sacrificed for the kids.  Some are still in their teens and twenties! 

Whilst some might see sacrifice as noble, it actually builds up years and years of resentment, as in 'do you know how much I sacrificed for you'.  It is the constant chant of the needy middle aged who wonder why the kids never visit.  Being a mum is fun, being a single mum, though challenging, is also fun, I'm going to do a blog or book about it sometime.  Kids are adaptable little souls, up to the age of 14, they will happily go along with anything, they just love being with you.  Let's go see the new exhibit at the Tate is usually met with an okey dokey and a beaming smile especially if accompanied by bribery and corruption.  When they get better at the B&C than you, then its terrifying funfair rides forever more. They can always think of brilliant reasons for why it is a good idea to be propelled upside down through the air at a hundred miles an hour.  Kids will accept you have dreams, especially if you encourage them to have dreams too.

People who gave up on their dreams get an air of negativity about them, that makes them unpleasant company, laugh and the world laughs with you, cry and you cry alone, or if you are lucky you can find a forum of like minded folk where they are similarly weeping buckets, and stay there for the next decade.      

But I digress, the tone of forums such as CMoMM, Stop the Myths and JATKY2 is bitter and resentful.  Angry, that people like me with such appalling writing skills and such a degenerate, libertarian attitude to life, should get the audience that they crave.  They want recognition for all their painstaking hard work and strong (anonymous) moral fibre.  They want the on stage applause but they are scared to step out from behind the curtains.  This  anonymity somehow makes their commentary more credible and mine more likely to be shit because they don't seek fame for themselves.  How noble. Lol.  

People shouldn't listen to a drug addled wino like me, lol, they should listen to fine upstanding sober citizens (subjects) like them.  Why don't they? jeez, that is a mystery!  They fail to understand why not many MS journalists are cuing (sic) up to be locked in the town square stocks for the village eejits to throw rotten veg.  The inhabitants of the cesspit are in fact giving the McCanns far more protection than the police or even special forces could, they have driven all the sane people away. Most of the evidence for any potential defence will probably come from them. 

Part of the McCanns media strategy has been to keep the 'Hate' going.  Their trolls (anonymous supporters) have been goading the 'antis' for 8+ years.  Occasionally, they have got the much desired sensational pitchfork front pages they desired.  Who remembers the Facebook 'bang bang' incident? Who remembers the unattractive pictures of the leading members of the Madeleine Foundation?  In order for the McCanns to be victims, they have to have enemies.  They cannot justify their protection if they cannot prove they have been threatened, and as we saw in latest round of the libel action, they had no actual threats against themselves or their children to back up their damages claim.

I think one of the reasons, many choose to remain anonymous when commenting on this case, is because, and there is no getting away from it, it is a peculiar hobby.  We struggle to explain what it is about it that keeps us gripped.  For myself, I haven't watched Coronation Street or Eastenders for 8 years!  That is a lie, I have never been able to watch CS or E.  As I have said many times, I think it is because this case has all the main ingredients of a live, supercharged, soap opera, it is an escape from our own miserable lives.  While our minds are trying to figure out the pieces of the puzzle, we can switch off reality for a while. 

And there is nothing wrong with what we are doing.  Man (and woman) was made to think!  And we need to exercise our brains as much as we need to exercise our bodies.  Our survival depends on being able to distinguish between right and wrong.  If wrong gets the lead we go headlong into an apocalypse.  Most of know this instinctively, an injustice to one person is an injustice to everyone.

Most who criticise the injustice done to Madeleine are decent, regular people. The kind of people who would normally nod and say 'Oh well', but there is something about this case that sticks in their craw.  It could be the obvious class differences, the way in which Kate and Gerry have been treated in comparison to Karen Matthews for example  It could be the horror that a small vulnerable child could be made to disappear, no questions asked.  It could also be the realisation that our politicians and newspapers have actually been lying to us for years.  Who knows, it is probably all of these reasons and more, for most I suspect it is an objection to the appalling abuse of power that we have seen in this case. It is an affront to our sense of decency and fair play.

The British have a well deserved reputation for being one of the least barbaric countries in the world. They set the benchmark for democracy and justice. It is the reason so many refugees want to come here.  The British Bulldog will not tolerate racism or dictatorship or fascism.  It will fight them on the beaches and it will never surrender.  I once saw a documentary about horrifically injured pilots from WWII, despite their injuries, their amazing characters shone through.  One old boy, the treasurer because he had no legs, recalled his flights in a Spitfire defending the British coastline.  In a loud plummy voice, he repeated 'the cheek  of it, the dashed cheek of it'.  Most who are drawn to this case are just normal, decent people who, like Edmund Burke, are not willing to stand by and do nothing while evil succeeds. 

Sadly, some are here because they have a guttural desire to see the parents punished.  They are the ones with the obligatory missing teeth and knitting at the ready for their front row seats.  They get their jollies watching people suffer and they have existed since time began.  As much fun as it might be to lop off all their heads, it won't really solve the problem because the next generation of malcontents will be waiting in the wings to take over. 

Anonymous internet trolls are unpleasant, but they are the proverbial sticks and stones and they are a small price to pay for access to the wonders of the world wide web. Sadly, vile people are all part and parcel of life.  We encounter them everywhere.  But just as you can't 'ban' the bitch you share an office with, you can't 'ban' people from the internet. 

For me the priority is Freedom of Speech.  I am no friend of Bennett and his cronies, or Tigerloaf and his but I have no desire to silence them or what they say.  He is as entitled to his opinion as I am.  If I am offended I will challenge it, but most of the time I can't arsed. As far as I am concerned, karma can deal with the lot of them, they have to live with themselves.  Trolling is just one aspect of this case, but as time goes by sadly, it will become more important.  Not just to this case but to those who want the power to arrest perceived dissidents and seize their computers.  If the Brenda Leyland 'troll stunt' had succeeded, it would have severely restricted discussion of the McCann case online and it would have paved the way for new 'trolling' laws to police the lawless internet. Brenda knowingly, or unknowingly, completely scuppered their plans. 

The way in which people at the top of our society have used this case to bring in press restrictions that will hide crime under privacy laws drives many of us on.  They do not want to protect the innocent, they want to protect the guilty and they want to do this by silencing the opposition.  Sadly for them, if they try to silence me (or anyone) legally they will stir up the sleeping tiger that is the Freedom of Speech lobby.  As bad as the tories are, they have little appetite for the type of censorship the pros and some of the antis demand because they have nothing to gain from it and a barrel load of unnecessary problems.  It was ministers from the Brown labour government who supported Hacked Off's demands to curtail the freedom of the press.  The McCann case and rooting out and imprisoning renegade news hounds has gone hand in hand with demands for new privacy laws.  They are insulting our intelligence if they think we didn't notice.