By All That Is Holy, NO!!!!!!!!!!!!

Tony Blair has been holding discussions with some of his oldest allies on how he could mount a campaign later this year to become full-time president of the EU council, the prestigious new job characterised as “president of Europe”. Blair, currently the Middle East envoy for the US, Russia, EU and the UN, has told friends he has made no final decision, but is increasingly willing to put himself forward for the job if it comes with real powers to intervene in defence and trade affairs. (ht2 at-Largely)

Hell NO! No fucking way! He was instrumental, one of the inner cabal that lied the US & UK into the Iraq war, not only should he not be EU president, he should be prosecuted for his war crimes. His messianic greed for power is astonishing, no wonder he was so close to Bush. Speaking of which-ish

As Bush tries to stave off disaster in Afghanistan, Condoleezza Rice, the US secretary of state, flies to London next week to talk to Gordon Brown — George Bush’s closest ally — to find a way to send more troops to Afghanistan. With UK defence minister Des Browne saying recently that Britain could be in Afghanistan for decades (, Rice will try to get Gordon Brown to commit more troops now, as a lever to get other countries to increase their deployment.

Stop the War Coalition is calling an emergency protest on Wednesday 6 February. We do not yet have details of Rice’s meetings with Gordon Brown but we anticipate that our protest will be at Downing Street, the timing to be announced as soon as her plans are known.

The army have cut basic training by half, to thirteen weeks, to get more soldiers to Afghanistan 

Conservative Libertarian (& His Lawyer) Attacks Blogger

The ‘man’ behind the Guido Fawkes ‘blog’ has thrown his toys out of his pram and is threatening Tim Ireland of Bloggerheads with his pet lawyer. How very libertarian, anyways it appears the money loving gossip hound does not like attention being drawn to his hotlinking ways. This isn’t an isolated incident nor is it unknown for him to use threats of legal action to hide his murky extreme right wing past. So in this wild west of blogging it falls to us people of good conscience to show solidarity against such nefarious ‘libertarians’. At least you won’t need your irony pills tonight.

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Bush Crime Family Loses Gitmo Ruling

A federal appeals court ruled against the Bush administration Friday in a central case on Guantánamo detainees, declining to reconsider an order that the government has to turn over virtually all its information on many detainees.

Unless the Justice Department obtains a stay, the decision, from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, will clear the way for detainees’ lawyers to press 180 appeals cases of inmates at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, challenging their detentions. The cases contest decisions by military panels that the men are properly held as unlawful enemy combatants.

In the new decision, Chief Judge Douglas Ginsburg of the appellate court wrote that letting the government withhold information on detainees from their lawyers and the court “would render utterly meaningless judicial review” of the military panels’ decisions.

Unless the Justice Department obtains a stay”  that would be the department run by a man (approved by dems & repubs) who refuses to say whether waterboarding is torture, lay your bets please.

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Huge Gas Reserves Found Off Iran’s Coast

A gas field with huge reserves has been discovered in the Gulf off the coast of Iran, Gholam Hossein Nozari, the Iranian oil minister has said. “A gas field with an estimated reserve of 11 trillion cubic feet (311 billion cubic metres) was found by an Indian company in the  Persian Gulf,” Nozari said on Saturday.

Nozari declined to reveal the name of the company but said “there will be talks with the discovering company for [the field’s] development if they are interested”. Iran has the world’s second-largest proven gas reserves after Russia and it has ambitions to export gas to a host of countries including Armenia, Pakistan and Syria.

Good job we’ve evolved past the point of attacking countries to steal their natural resources, hmmm. Is this the other shoe dropping?

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Beside The Seaside, Beside The Sea

Well it’s pretty stormy on my bit of seaside, this weather has caused some problems elsewhere, not least Biscuits Galore!-

Thousands of packets of chocolate biscuits have washed up on the Lancashire shore from a stricken ferry. The McVitie’s biscuits were being carried on lorries aboard the Riverdance, which ran aground off north shore near Blackpool on Thursday night.

Now these crumbly treats look to be pretty well intact, if the packets are waterproof and unbroken it would be a terrible thing to throw them away, we are so very wasteful. I mean ok sell them as seconds but the automatic way in which so much food is junked in our plentiful consumer culture is rather awful when put into a global context. Also that time of abundance looks to be coming to a close, so we might need those biscuits. Meanwhile Rats Ahoy!-

Fears have been voiced that the trawler which ran aground on St Kilda on Friday could threaten rare sea birds on the World Heritage Site. Force 11 gales have dispersed fuel from the vessel’s tanks but the National Trust for Scotland fears it is any rats on board that could cause most damage.

Because…I know some facts about rats (and that rhymes) this has happened in the past, rats making landfall on islands that previously were free of them and they cause immense small furry chaos. Last year a big drive was made to ensure ships used proper rat guards on their ropes because rats can scurry along the ropes either onto the harbour or into the water from a ship. In the water they can be a threat even some distance from shore, so even weighing anchor near some islands could risk a rat invasion. Once on land a sexy rat couple in the absence of predators with food (birds, eggs, babies eyes etc) will overrun the place, a female can produce 5 litters a year, a litter is typically 7 but can be up to 14. And each one of those gets busy so in a year…hundreds, then thousands. They do make fun pets though. And lastly this study finds-

sitting on the wet sand or swimming in the sea for too long may increase the risk of catching an unpleasant stomach bug, a new study found…Beach sand often has some degree of contamination from seabird waste, or other fecal waste. Microbes concentrate naturally around the waterline, in the water and also are tracked around on bathers’ feet, researchers found.

They looked at three beaches north of Miami: Hobie Beach, Hollywood and Fort Lauderdale. “There is an increase risk of acquiring gastroenteritis the longer a bather either sits in the wet sand or stays in the water,” said Jay Fleisher professor College of Osteopathic Medicine-Nova Southeastern University.

But what the article fails to delve into is the role of pollution, what risk is there where sewage is not pumped into the sea by dodgy private utilities or where environmental degradation has lowered people’s immune systems. However is does call to mind this alleged fact- if stuck on a desert island with no fresh water you can absorb water by taking in sea water through your anus, you will absorb the water but not the salt as much (or at all maybe). I have no idea if this is true, however it would make the next version of Robinson Crusoe a lot funnier (did Tom Hanks try it in Cast Away? The only thing I remember about that was the director Zemeckis liked to ‘quip’ afterwards that the content of that unopened package was a waterproof solar powered satellite phone, that would have made a better ending- The character kicks himself to death for being a sentimental cretin and not opening it. Nic Roeg’s Castaway is tons more fun).

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Zanan, Disappearing Women


Much to the annoyance & exasperation of both Jadi & Naj the Iranian authorities forced the closing down of Zanan magazine by cancelling their license, the only women’s mag in Iran-

Jadi- Zanan (means Women) used to be a “moderated” magazine. It never wrote anything extreme to prevent it’s closing but now, after 16 years the only Persian Women’s Magazine is closed.

Naj “I am distressed. This is depressing.
and I am in tears for the hurdles Iran’s best friends, the writers, the journalists, the filmmakers, the historians, the philosphers have to put up with … because a gang of ugly, wicked, low-life, socially-immature, STUPID, PETTY, IDIOTS ARE RUNNING MY COUNTRY ….”

 Zanan’s founder Shahla Sherkat is considered a prime example of Islamic Iranian feminism. She has been accused of ‘offering a dark picture of the Islamic Republic through the pages of Zanan’ and of ‘compromising the psyche and the mental health’ of its readers by providing them with ‘morally questionable information.’ The magazine, has for years been considered a place where controversial topics in Iranian society have been discussed, ranging from domestic violence, to cosmetic surgery and relationships. It has been at the forefront in the fight for fundamental women’s rights in Iran. The magazine has also used very subtle and creative language in order to avoid being shut down.

I think we can all empathise with the feeling of stupid petty idiots fucking up one’s country, ahem. And in case a person of low intelligence has stopped by to read this- criticising the government of Iran does not mean the country should be bombed by America, only a retard thinks bombs improve lives and/or neo-cons/pro-war ‘liberals’ have any motives that could conceivably be considered ‘pure’ in regards to Iran- no this is a stupid bit of authoritarian male chauvinism that I wish could be reversed, that the situation were not so tense that conservative demagogues can get away with this nonsense and that it might be used by other demagogues to advance their blood soaked imperial agenda. I sincerely think that what hope the human race has does depend on women taking power away from men until an equal situation is achieved. So retrograde actions like this not just impoverish the people of Iran but the whole earth.

Here’s a quick slide show of 7 Zanan covers from which the top image is taken.

Poland, Invaded Again

Still at least they are ‘safe‘ from their ancient arch enemies, um…Iran & …er…North Korea..? (Wait, people are buying this shit?)

Poland and the US have reached an agreement in principal to install a controversial American missile defence system on Polish soil.

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