Manifesto

Today’s by-election in Stoke-on-Trent is being contested by several candidates:

Independent – Mohammad Akram
Liberal Democrat – Zulfiqar Ali
Conservative – Jack Brereton
Monster Raving Loony – The Incredible Flying Brick
Green – Adam Colclough
Christian Peoples – Godfrey Davies
Independent – Barbara Fielding
BNP – David Furness
UKIP – Paul Nuttall
Labour – Gareth Snell

At first glance (and, to be fair, at second glance too) the oddest candidate might seem to be The Incredible Flying Brick, but that’s only because you were too busy glancing to look properly at Barbara Fielding, who will later introduce herself to us by saying that “Book-Keeping and Accounts are my speciality with cleanups”.

Barbara is recorded as a vexatious litigant:

Vexatious litigation is legal action which is brought, regardless of its merits, solely to harass or subdue an adversary. It may take the form of a primary frivolous lawsuit or may be the repetitive, burdensome, and unwarranted filing of meritless motions in a matter which is otherwise a meritorious cause of action. Filing vexatious litigation is considered an abuse of the judicial process and may result in sanctions against the offender.

Barbara is representing her own party: The Abolish Magna Carta Reinstate Monarchy Party.

It’s a bit crappily anti-semitic and right wing. And their manifesto makes the Monster Raving Loonies look, well… positively sane. You can read the whole document here, of which Barbara tells us:

The above is my updated party Constitution and Manifesto, which will be added to as I see fit, and to give other politicians a chance to copy it, and make a mess of it, as usual.

Highlights include (but are not limited to):

The Unsigned Illegal document, The Magna Carta, will be Abolished.

Fair enough. Although it is kinda over 800 years old now.

Nuclear Power will be banned.
Fracking will incur imprisonment.

Not great.

Compensation will be paid to Dwarves created by Thalidomide.

Ah good, we’re back on track.
But then, there’s this:

The Death Penalty for anyone using a Radio Signal to kill or control another human being or animal, except in warfare.

Execution by Radio Signal, I’d guess?
And my favourite bit:

Psychiatrists and Mental Health workers will have a higher IQ than the patients they pretend to be superior to.

Possibly an indication of some of the people that Barbara has encountered in her recent past? I don’t know. I’m just saying.

You can view The Abolish Magna Carta Reinstate Monarchy Party website here, and you can join for £38 per annum although “application for membership of the Abolish Magna Carta, Reinstate Monarchy is subject to review by the Party and its Constituency Associations [that’s Barbara, folks – Ed.] before final approval.”

Barbara is not a big fan of men.

MEN ARE ALWAYS BEEFING ABOUT. WOUND UP. FIGHTING FIT.HYSTERICAL.
All over the world, Men seem to be up for it, no matter where they originate from.They all want to be top dog. and they all want to kill each other off to prove how manly they are. They are all control freaks.

All male animals, have this same behavioural problem. They kill off or quell the mild gentle intelligent males of their species and then breed prolifically with equally brainless females.

That is why today, the whole world is overcrowded with riotous, brainless, worthless, spiteful people, Who should never have been born, and whom the majority, seem to manifest themselves in the Dictatorship of the Arts world of Broadcasting and Media.

Or women:

Women are equally as foolish, They allow men to treat them like chattels, and condemn anyone who goes against the norm. They too dislike intelligent women, and will try to discredit them, or put them down, especially if they are truly inadequate themselves.

Or the media:

Maybe Donald Trump should try waterboarding on Journalists and DJ’s. I’m sure Marilyn, Howard Hughes, Aristotle Onassis, and I, are  not the only people to be duped, robbed, and murdered by these scum bags.

Wait. What? You’ve been duped, robbed, and murdered by Journalists and DJ’s?
OK, I’m actually quite impressed that you’re still able to stand as a candidate, then. Post-mortem politics is no cake walk.

I’m not sure who will win today’s by-election in Stoke-on-Trent, but I really, really hope it isn’t Barbara.

Shorts Term Gain

Meanwhile in Cape Town…

Sensible measures:

And some silly ones too:

Also, no splashing and fewer showers. Now you know.

Water Crisis Solved

In order to understand the thinking behind my idea what has just single-handedly solved the local water crisis, you need to be aware of a couple of points.

Point 1: There is a water crisis in Cape Town. I may have repeatedly mentioned the drought and the ongoing – and constantly more stringent – water restrictions somewhere on the blog previously.
The dams are down to 37%. We need water.

Point 2: There’s an absolutely massive chunk of ice about to fall off Antarctica.

Beagle-eyed readers might already see where I’m going with this, but you’re too late. I’ve emailed everyone who matters in this (fairly obvious with hindsight) plan of mine. Stakeholders and roleplayers are on board. Some of them quite literally.
I’m talking about the Smit Amandla Marine Salvage (and now Iceberg Towing) guys; I’m talking about the Mayor of the Cape Town, Patricia “Peppermint Patty” de Lille (I also gave Empress Helen a buzz, just to keep her in the loop); and I’m talking about several local artisanal gin manufacturers, who – together with their tonic making colleagues – would surely not want to miss out on this opportunity to have pristine Antarctic ice freshly-delivered right to their metaphorical doorstep, courtesy of global warming and the newly-formed 6000 miles… Ice Company (Pty) Ltd.

I’ve been doing some rudimentary calculations and I reckon that the distance from the Larsen C Ice Shelf (for it is that what is breaking) to Cape Town is a distance of about 6000…. [audience hold breath expectantly] …kilometres [audience sighs with disappointment].

That’s not so far, and the amount of ice that’s going to break off, while difficult to accurately estimate, is certainly substantial enough to warrant the effort of towing it to Cape Town. The depth of the broken ice shelf is almost a kilometre, and it’s going to be between 120-150km long and about 75km wide.

A further rudimentary calculation suggests that it therefore has a volume of 8,400,000,000 cubic metres. That’s 8.4 billion megalitres. Moist.
We can’t (and mustn’t) get carried away though. Remember that ice is an expanded version of water. A version of water that’s 9.05% expanded.

So we’re actually going to get 76.02 billion megalitres. Still, at 800Ml usage per day, that’s still enough to keep us going for 9½ million days, or just over 26,000 years.

Yeah. Some of it might melt on the way, I know. Whatevs.
So let’s round it off to a nice 25,000 years of clean, fresh, pure water.

Still got to be worth it.

There are a couple of logistical challenges to overcome, I admit. It’s quite close to Argentina and they might want it, but then again, so are the Falkland Islands and they want them too, but they’re not having them. Or my ice shelf. Hard luck.

Then there’s the issue of where to store it. Ideally, what we need is a nice long, deep, three-sided valley that we can build a big wall across the end of. Franschhoek will do. Franschhoek, with its outrageous faux French accents and that ridiculous double H nonsense in the middle.

True, we’ll lose one of the scenic gems of the Cape, some of the best restaurants in the world and some truly amazing wine farms…

…but on the plus side, we’ll have water for the next 250 centuries.
A worthwhile sacrifice, I’m sure you’ll agree.

Au revoir.

This particular idea is mine, but the genre is not new. As this article informs us:

Long-distance iceberg towing is one of those ideas that will not die but never really springs to life either. It exists in a kind of technological purgatory, dressed up in whatever technology is fashionable during an epoch and resold to a happily gullible media.

Pretty much what I just did in the 450 words above, then. And pretty much what Hult and Ostrander did in 96 pages back in 1973. True, their idea has never caught on in the 44 intervening years, but then they never had the power of social media available to make their case.
And once you get some middle-aged white people in Constantia – desperately concerned at the state of their lawns – on your side, once you get Facebook groups and online petitions going, once you bombard Cape Talk and Carte Blanche, those bastions of public opinion, with your fantastic plan to provide water for the Cape for the next nine and a half million days, (and once you’ve silenced the whinging residents of Franschhoek) I think we’ll come up with a plan to get the Larsen C Ice Shelf to the Western Cape fairly quickly.

Never forget, dear readers: You heard it here first.

I’ve been saying…

I love it when a plan comes together …when two recent 6000 miles… blog posts are linked by some external force or means.

I’ve been talking a lot about the local water restrictions (because it is big, big news here) and yesterday, I mentioned how people hate “drones” because they think that they are spying on them.

Guess what, readers – today, there was this on the Cape Talk website:

The City says about 20 000 residents are guilty of excessive water consumption.

It was revealed on Friday that the largest water consumers include the green belt of Newlands and Constantia as well as neighbouring suburbs Athlone, Newfields, Rylands and Lansdowne.In the northern suburbs, more big consumers are to be found in Kraaifontein, while further afield verdant Somerset West is another water-guzzling area.

Yeah, “water-guzzling”, “verdant” Somerset West. Sort yourself out.

The City says they will be working with residents to reduce usage before taking harsher measures.
Limberg says they will begin introducing new technology such as drones.

ROBOTIC SPY CAMERAS! EYES IN THE SKY! IT’S LIKE 1984 ALL OVER AGAIN. (I MEAN THE BOOK, NOT THE YEAR!) (DRONES HADN’T REALLY BEEN INVENTED BACK THEN.) IT’S INVADING MY PRIVACY AND LET’S FACE IT, THE OPERATORS ARE ACTUALLY JUST LOOKING FOR BIKINI-CLAD SUNBATHERS IN THE BACK GARDENS, AREN’T THEY? SICKOS!

See what I mean?

WLP

I’m not putting this on here for the reasons you might already be thinking of. I did hear it on the radio yesterday, and that was definitely for those reasons, but I’m steering clear of all that stuff on here (at least for the moment).

It is a great song – one of my favourites by REM – and deserves to be highlighted, regardless of the current global political machinations.

And this is albeit that the band themselves volunteered it as an anti-Trump song last year in yet another move which didn’t destroy him.

This is a longer live version, complete with a really young Michael Stipe (hey, it was filmed in 1989!), plenty of stick and chair action and a cinematic video. It takes a while to get going.

Be patient. Trust me.