Perspective is going to the seaside to make sand castles. So don't expect any updates for a while. See you all later!
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This is the adbusted billboard on Dalry Road, Edinburgh, mentioned in the Evening News Story.
Click here for a full size image.
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:: Thursday, May 15, 2003 ::
Guardian Unlimited | Special reports | The truth about Jessica
"It was like a Hollywood film. They cried, 'Go, go, go', with guns and blanks and the sound of explosions. They made a show - an action movie like Sylvester Stallone or Jackie Chan, with jumping and shouting, breaking down doors." All the time with the camera rolling. The Americans took no chances, restraining doctors and a patient who was handcuffed to a bed frame.
There was one more twist. Two days before the snatch squad arrived, Al-Houssona had arranged to deliver Jessica to the Americans in an ambulance. "I told her I will try and help you escape to the American Army but I will do this very secretly because I could lose my life." He put her in an ambulance and instructed the driver to go to the American checkpoint. When he was approaching it, the Americans opened fire. They fled just in time back to the hospital. The Americans had almost killed their prize catch.
A BBC2 programme on Sunday will expose the publicity scam around the rescue of the unfortunate pvt Jessica Lynch in Iraq. A staged rescue complete with guns firing blanks - for the benefit of the TV cameras. Very post-modern I'm sure.
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:: Wednesday, May 14, 2003 ::
Edinburgh Evening News - Edinburgh - Billboard protest tells firms where to stick capitalism
The group, dressed in overalls and hats, used 30ft steel ladders to reach the billboard in Gorgie during a midnight raid on Monday, fooling police officers into thinking that they were legitimate workers in the process.
Mr Wellburn added: "I know that they do similar things in the States where they put smaller posters on the adverts, but I thought I'd go the whole hog and do the entire billboard.
"In Dalry Road, the police drove by us for about three hours while we put these billboards up and I was absolutely amazed when they didn't stop us, but because we had overalls and hats on and the billboards looked like real ones they didn't bother us."
I've got to get a picture of this one.
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:: Tuesday, May 13, 2003 ::
The Outsiders Election
The Scottish Parliament has published a fascinating report into the May 1st Elections. The PDF report can be downloaded via this page.
Labour took the most seats on only 34% of the vote. And most people did not bother to vote. They see politicians as 'all the same' and turn their back on the whole thing. The report effectively highlights the almost identical policy proposals of the 4 establishment parties.
As Ian Bell put it in Holyrood magazine "This year the party wish-lists bear a family resemblance so strong they might have issued from the same pen. Mainstream politics is narrower, and duller, than it has ever been. So crowded is the centre ground, we might as well resort to congestion charging. Were it not for the dogged persistence of the Scottish Socialists, the Greens and single issue candidates, an election would hardly be necessary. The drawing of lots, with the assistance of a bingo caller, would suffice. (Holyrood Magazine, 22/4/2003, p10)"
Much has been made of the SSP and Green success on the regional list section of the vote. But check this out. The map below shows which parties gained most in the constituency section of the vote. The SSP gains are in pink. I like this map!
There are some other interesting analyses in the report.
"Paradoxically, the success of the Greens and Socialists might have been helped by the lack of media coverage. Not appearing as mainstream parties or with the four main party leaders in two TV debates allowed them to be portrayed as outsiders. And this was a good election not to look or sound like a politician."
An interesting point. But I would argue that it is wrong. Whenever the SSP had a chance to put forward its programme, it soon became evident that we posed a real alternative to "mainstream parties".
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:: Monday, May 12, 2003 ::
This was the winner of the excellent peace poster competition at brushstroke TV. Found via the Greenpeace Blog.
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X-Men: The Legend of Wolverine reviewed
"We can only say that if people lived in a communist society after perfecting the science and art of cooperation, they would not need to look like a Wolverine with metal claws to feel "powerful" "
From the highly entertaining Maoist Internationalist Movement movie reviews.
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Bobby Accessibility Report Welcome to the Scottish Parliament
The Scottish Parliament website fails basic accessibility tests quite spectacularly. How hard can it be to add alt text to an image? I find this quite surprising, most local councils make great efforts to comply with accessibility guidelines, why can't our parliament?
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:: Friday, May 09, 2003 ::
Well the page below is fine in Mac IE 5 and Safari.
Fine in Windows NN7, but weird things happen to the central column in IE6 and Opera. Loads of white space appears.
I wouldn't care, but IE6/win is probably 80% of the audience.
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Edinburgh Central SSP
Launched the Edinburgh Central SSP website, should validate as XHTML strict. Seems a bit wordy now I see it afresh, but it's a start.
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:: Wednesday, May 07, 2003 ::
How ironic that the first act in Scotland's 'democratic' parliament is to give an oath of allegiance to an unelected hereditary monarchy.
Tommy Sheridan, SSP group leader said ""I and my party colleagues were elected on a clear and honest commitment to an independent Socialist Scotland, a Socialist republic, a Scotland of citizens not a Scotland of subjects.
"We will continue to fight for such a Scotland."
Rosie Kane said 'talk to the hand'.
Whilst Lothians SSP MSP Colin Fox sang a couple of verses of Robert Burns great work 'A Man's A Man', before the presiding officer made him go to the back of the
What are these words that are too terrible to speak? Well Burns the radical and democrat had a few things to say about those who lord it over us because of an accident of birth.
Is there for honest poverty
That hings his head, an a' that?
The coward slave, we pass him by -
We dare be poor for a' that!
For a' that, an a' that,
Our toils obscure, an a' that,
The rank is but the guinea's stamp,
The man's the gowd for a' that.
What though on hamely fare we dine,
Wear hoddin grey, an a' that?
Gie fools their silks, and knaves their wine -
A man's a man for a' that.
For a' that, an a' that.
Their tinsel show, an a' that,
The honest man, tho e'er sae poor,
Is king o men for a' that.
Ye see you birkie ca'd 'a lord,'
What struts, an stares, an a' that?
Tho hundreds worship at his word,
He's but a cuif for a' that.
For a' that, an a' that,
His ribband, star, an a' that,
The man o independent mind,
He looks an laughs at a' that.
A prince can mak a belted knight,
A marquis, duke, an a' that!
But an honest man's aboon his might -
Guid faith, he mauna fa' that!
For a' that, an a' that,
Their dignities, an a' that,
The pith o sense an pride o worth.
Are higher rank than a' that.
Then let us pray that come it may
[As come it will for a' that],
That Sense and Worth o'er a' the earth,
Shall bear the gree an a' that.
For a' that, an a' that,
It's comin yet for a' that,
That man to man, the world, o'er
Shall brithers be for a' that.
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Telegraph | News | New MSPs take their seats in the corridors of power
stage two of their pathetic and infantile protest will begin tomorrow at the swearing in ceremony when all six of Tommy's Trots have prepared their own version of how not to take the oath.
More of the balanced reporting we have come to expect from the Daily Telegraph.
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:: Tuesday, May 06, 2003 ::
McSweeney's Internet Tendency: Unused Audio Commentary By Howard Zinn & Noam Chomsky, Recorded Summer, 2002, for The Fellowship of the Ring Platinum Series Extended Edition DVD, Part One
Zinn: You view the conflict as being primarily about pipe-weed, do you not?
Chomsky: Well, what we see here, in Hobbiton, farmers tilling crops. The thing to remember is that the crop they are tilling is, in fact, pipe-weed, an addictive drug transported and sold throughout Middle Earth for great profit.
Zinn: This is absolutely established in the books. Pipe-weed is something all the Hobbits abuse. Gandalf is smoking it constantly. You are correct when you point out that Middle Earth depends on pipe-weed in some crucial sense, but I think you may be overstating its importance. Clearly the war is not based only on the Shire's pipe-weed. Rohan and Gondor's unceasing hunger for war is a larger culprit, I would say.
Chomsky: But without the pipe-weed, Middle Earth would fall apart. Saruman is trying to break up Gandalf's pipe-weed ring. He's trying to divert it.
Zinn: Well, you know, it would be manifestly difficult to believe in magic rings unless everyone was high on pipe-weed. So it is in Gandalf's interest to keep Middle Earth hooked.
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:: Sunday, May 04, 2003 ::
The Washington Dispatch - Opinion
The most inaccurate report ever, even gets the name of the party wrong. Almost funny, think these are crazy Christian fundi's.
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:: Saturday, May 03, 2003 ::
Edinburgh Mayday 2003
Tommy Sheridan and Mark Steele peruse the papers on the annual Edinburgh Mayday march.
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:: Friday, May 02, 2003 ::
An historic victory for the SSP. 6 MSP's elected on the regional lists including a knife-edge victory in Edinburgh (over the SNP) at 7.45 am this morning, which saw Colin Fox (above) elected. A long day with no sleep and straight to the council vote count today. Thanks to the voters of Moat Ward who gave me 8.4% of the vote, which I am delighted with.
Now for the hard work.
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