Saturday, 21 December 2019

Save our democracy from media bias

Make newspaper reporting fairer and more accurate during elections by stopping fact and opinion being mixed

Freedom of the press is the backbone of democracy. It means politicians can be held to account - and gives people like us a chance to get to the truth. But when newspapers start mixing fact with opinion it leaves people like us in the dark about what’s truthful reporting and what’s opinion.

Democracy works best when people are informed. That can only work if newspapers follow the rules.

Will you sign and share to make sure newspapers report truthfully?

Save our democracy from media bias

Friday, 20 December 2019

The extent of bias in the British press

What we're not getting from British newspapers

The always excellent diamond geezer recently published data on Britain's Top 10 paid-for daily newspapers. The table analysing them by political affiliation was of particular interest to me. With the i newspaper having more recently been bought by the owner of the Daily Mail, one could argue that the figures need to be amended thus:

left of centreneutralright of centre
Daily Mirror
The Guardian
Daily Star
The Sun
Daily Mail
The Times
Daily Telegraph
Daily Express


They've said i will retain its editorial independence, but I rate that claim up there with a snowball's chance in hell, the cheque's in the post and similar chestnuts.

And whether it's 73% or 77% of British newspapers leaning to the right, is a bit academic, innit? It's still three-quarters of them. It's still a massively unbalanced viewpoint. People are not being informed, they are being indoctrinated.

Take the recent election: The data shows that partisanship of the UK press made the Conservative Party's task a great deal easier. And, as this analysis shows that "Neither the policies or Jeremy Corbyn himself was to blame."
What do we learn as our takeaway message from all this? That nearly all of the British media serve only to divide people [my emphasis] who would otherwise unite behind a Labour government which would have made the average citizen over £6,000 a year better off & would have protected public services like the NHS from being turned into yet more money making purely-for-profit private businesses. 
The job of the media is supposed to be to use INDEPENDENT journalists to hold EVERYONE equally to account, & present the provable facts to the public so we can make up our own minds; this they do not do, so we must CHANGE the way we get our information, STOP buying their papers, stop watching their TV news, fact check for ourselves from independent sources online (which is FREE), & thus hurt the corrupt right wing multi-billionaires where it hurts - in their wallets with a loss of sales & viewers! 
Save our democracy from media bias

Tuesday, 26 March 2019

Fully accepting your disability will make you stronger

Fully accepting your disability will make you stronger

Even though,
  • you may first have to peel back your psyche so that you can learn to trust yourself
  • you will still have challenges that many people will not understand
  • there will still be roadblocks
  • you will still imagine headbutting politicians
  • you will not suddenly get fully integrated and accepted into society
  • it will not stop doctors from f*cking up
  • there will still be many facets of life that are out of your control
  • it means identifying community
  • it means having a firmer sense of self and stronger reality
  • it means not beating yourself up when you need help
  • it means having permission from yourself to ask for the help you need to live in the best way that you can
  • it means finally seeing that you deserve to access support services
  • it means knowing that you deserve to find solutions that lay outside of the “norm”
  • it means using the tools that empower you
  • it means letting go of pushing yourself when it is bad for you
  • it means giving yourself space to let go of shame
  • it means giving yourself space to be honest with yourself and others
  • it means seeing the ways in which you are whole
  • it means identifying the places where you do have control
  • You are already fighting against so many things.

But if you stop warring against your own reality, whether other people share that reality with you or not, then that is one place you can find peace.

Acceptance does not mean giving up. It just means recognising the reality of where you are now, so that you can gather yourself up in order to figure out where you will go.

Reblogged from Explaining Sick Stuff

Image by Patrick Neufelder from Pixabay

Monday, 25 March 2019

Detained in Spain, Bank Robbers aged 80 and 73

Don't know whether to laugh or cry, but I couldn't resist translating this report (just because I can). It's one way to eek out a meager pension, or proof that retirement ages are getting pushed further and further, even for career criminals.

Agents of the National Police and Mossos d'Esquadra, in a joint operation, have arrested two men aged 73 and 80 for armed robberies from bank branches. They had entered the banks dressed in reflective clothing and wielding firearms, hobbling employees to seize cash and flee by public transport. (What, were they using a Senior Citizen's Bus Pass?)

These individuals, of South American origin, are attributed two robberies to bank branches in Barcelona in which they took loot of 32,000 and 45,000 euros. Two other people related to the operation have also been arrested, one man for a crime against public health and another who was caught with one of the robbers when they were preparing to carry out a new assault in Madrid.

Hold-ups in Barcelona

The investigation began after the robbery at a bank branch in Barcelona, ​​carried out by two individuals 'of advanced age' who wore reflective vests and wielded pistols. These men forced the workers of the entity to give them the money, waiting for the time delay on the safe, to seize 32,000 euros in cash. After that they tied up the workers and fled.

Two months later, while agents carried out investigations into this crime, they learned of a new assault at another bank in Barcelona. Witnesses pointed to two elderly individuals who spoke with a South American accent, one of them possibly Italian wearing an anorak from a parcel company. The robbers intimidated bank workers with weapons and seized a total of 45,000 euros. They tied up the victims and escaped with the booty.

Coordination with Italian agents through Europol

Once the profile of the assailants was established, Carabinieri Milano confirmed that they had an extensive criminal record in Italy. The investigators located the homes of the assailants, one of them in Madrid and the other in El Vendrell (Tarragona), for which a simultaneous police raids were initiated to carry out arrests and searches.

The agents verified that the man resident in El Vendrell had plans to travel to Madrid with the intention of meeting with his partner and committing a new robbery in the capital. He was located and detained in a hostel in the center of Madrid in the company of a third individual when they were about to imminently assault a bank branch in the capital. At the time of the arrest they carried two revolvers, two motorcycle helmets, gloves, shackles, flanges and a fake badge with the caption "Special Police", as well as Italian identity cards with false IDs. Moments before that intervention, the other robber was arrested at a home where they resided in the Madrid district of Vallecas.

In the search made in El Vendrell, police discovered 'facilities conditioned for the cultivation, processing and storage of marijuana', this plantation being guarded by a fourth man, who was also arrested. Two Italian identity cards, two revolvers, a detonating pistol, a vehicle, two motorcycle helmets, gloves, shackles, plastic flanges, a false plate, several mobile phones and 3.1 kilos of marijuana have been confiscated.

Detenidos dos atracadores de 80 y 73 años por robos en sucursales bancarias

Illustration by Joe Alfaraby from Pixabay

Monday, 11 March 2019

Syros Carnival 2019

Συριανό Καρναβάλι 2019 - Syros Carnival 2019

Putting this on the bucket list for a future year: Carnival in Ermoupoli on the island of Syros in the Cyclades, Greece. Syros Carnival is a three-day-event with festivities on the Saturday night - the traditional Zeibekia (masquerade) custom in Markos Vamvakaris Square - in Ano Syros, a procession along the harbour front on the Sunday afternoon that culminates in dancing in Miaoulis Square, with a Latin party on the Protopapadaki pedestrian street and, on Καθαρή Δευτέρα (Ash Monday or Clean Monday), the customs of Koulouma with kite flying in the countryside and particularly in Gallissas village.

The dates of Clean Monday in Greece let us work out when this carnival takes place.

Photos and videos from Syros Carnival 2019

Rail-Ex Taunton 2018

A few details from Rail-Ex Taunton 2018 on 28 October 2018

Monday, 25 February 2019