Friday, 20 November 2009

How dumb is three strikes for Broadband?

Because if we applied it to other services...

If they thought you had ordered pirate DVD's by mail three times, they'd stop you receiving or sending mail.

If they thought you had made recipes from a pirated cookbook three times, they'd take your kitchen away.

If they thought you had used a car to take a dodgy DVD to a friends three times, they'd take away your driving licence.

If they thought you had obtained a dodgy DVD in a pub three times, they'd ban you from pubs.

Used electricity to watch pirated content? Then why not have your electricity taken away.

I used to have a couple of photocopied books. Guess I should just burn my library now.

Oh, and remember, they want to be able to do this without due legal process. On the say so of Mandleson's appointed deputies. From the MPAA and RIAA.

Listen, Doubleday doesn't get to check my bookshelves, Warner don't get to check my hard drive, not without a frigging warrant and probably frigging cause.

This is basic, page one, rule of law. We shouldn't have to explain this to a government minister.

Thursday, 19 November 2009

Well, they've fired the starting pistol...

Children, Schools and Families Bill

Never mind the assurances that nothing would be done until the official response to the enquiry, let alone the select committee report, there it is.

Anyone got any idea what is so wrong with HE that we need further legislation and powers RIGHT THE F NOW? Or any of these "high profile cases" that aren't, in fact, failures of state authorities to properly use their current powers?

A parliamentary petition might help a little now, as it's got to be voted on. The commons debate will be drawn out, thanks to the select committee members who were engaging with Badman, and there will not be an entirely smooth path in the Lords either. Certainly, there's a good chance this could get delayed until after the election, and then quietly go away to die.

A petition or a few would at least force MP's to engage a little with those materially affected by the bill.

As for the statement of non-conformity, or whatever it is... look, if you're not going to comply, why the hell are you shouting "I will not comply" now, before it's the law? You are registering yourself not only as a home educator, but a "trouble making" home educator, which is exactly what they want to get a frigging list of.

If you're not going to comply, then don't. Comply.

As for "Parents United", you harvested my email, spammed me anonymously, stalked me on twitter then bugged out when you realised youcould be traced, and you want ME to put MY name and expose MY family for your half arsed, ripped off "statement" when you won't even say who you are?

You're making EO look classy.

Thursday, 12 November 2009

We are the people they've been looking for...

Imagine if you will that you are happily working away in your kitchen, say, baking some bread. Not unusually you have your radio on. Lets presume you're a smug, middle class, university educated so-and-so, so you have radio four on.

While you are kneading your dough, a programme comes on about the crisis in bread. The state bakeries are turning out bread that can, to be fair, be excellent in both taste and nutritional content on occassion, but much of the time is bland and full of empty calories. In many cases, it turns out to be actively carcinogenic.

In fact, despite what the government say, many independent experts say that it's as good for you, on balance, as eating cardboard. The official bread making process is laborious, inflexible at the bakery level and subject to interference on the slightest whim of the Minister for Bread, Scones and Baked Goods.

The minister is not allowing state bakeries to use the international bread test, as it doesn't mandate "Traditional medium slicing".

While you are warming your oven and letting your dough prove, many experts come on the radio, debating what should go into the official governmental standard bread making process, whether adding additional mandatory stages helped, whether it's the fault of the standard tin, whether it would be improved by making poppy seeds compulsory, and, of course, blaming the bakers (who have to follow the official process), the inspectors (who have to enforce the official process) or, ultimately, the farmers for producing such terrible, terrible wheat these days.

By the time they have finished that section, your bread has risen nicely and is ready to be baked. The pundits are moving on, saying, well, they are trying their best, British bread is the best in the world and, according to their figures, better than it has ever been. One of them says sagely "Baking bread is HARD. If it was easy, we would have cracked it by now".

Maybe today you've made a cottage loaf, or a tiger loaf, a baguette, a fruit loaf, soda bread, bara brith... but there it is, hot, and delicious. And you know, maybe today it didn't rise right, or turn a little crustier than you hoped, but it's only a days baking, you can have another go tomorrow, and at least you know exactly what went into it.

And that's exactly how I felt about education when I saw that trailer.

Tuesday, 10 November 2009

From Twitter 11-10-2009

From Twitter 11-09-2009: From Twitter 11-08-2009: From Twitter 11-07-2009: From Twitter 11-06-2009: From Twitte..
From the "nothing to hide, nothing to fear" folder...
Citizen Journalism at it's best:
Just applied for a job: wondering how far it will get before they set the application on fire.

Tweets copied by

Thursday, 5 November 2009

Graham Badman, King of projection

Sure, let's bandy around psychological disorders, Graham. Let's do that.

Let's start with Mbp. Let's ignore that the syndrome is of dubious medical acceptance, and go into it.

It's where someone, desparate for approval or sympathy, invents or creates evidence of abuse or harm in another, usually a child, and perhaps colludes in creating and/ or concealing the actual sources of harm.

These sad individuals often seem unable to adequately divorce their fantasies of vulnerable people that only they can adequately protect from the reality that it is their own actions that are placing these people in harms way.

These people often engage in elaborate ruses, sometimes involving their family and friends in their deceptions. They portray any attempts to reveal their deceptions and actually causing harm as personal attacks on their blameless character.

Now. Graham Badman produced a report which, on the basis of no defencible statitstics, claimed that home educated children were at risk from their parents, that only the intervention of state appointed officers, like him and his daughter, could protect these children, despite the documented vastly worse outcomes for state cared children. Badman's daughter joined at least one home educating group under false pretences during the review. When the poor quality of the review was highlighted, further requests for information about Badman's conduct of the review was denied on the grounds it could be used to defame or villify him.

It's a classic case. There's no hope for him. In accusing the home educators of MBP, Badman was indulging in textbook projection, placing his psychological problems onto an external scapegoat.

If critically examining a man's "work" is defamatory, if telling the truth about him is villification, then call me a domestic extremist.