Wednesday, July 30, 2008

For better or worse...

New technology is supposed to bring benefits. I can think of two areas where it appears to have made it worse.

One is the world of banking, where it now takes one day longer to pay money into your account than it did 30 years ago, although to be fair, that is more to do with banks wanting the extra day's interest even though technology would allow instant transfers should they wish.

The second is weather forecasting. Last sunday, BBC 5 day forecast for London was

Light Showers
Light Showers

By Monday night it was rain for all five days.

What have we had so far?

Monday, Sun with an interesting electrical storm in the evening with a bit of rain to follow.
Tuesday, Sun.
Wednesday, Sun.

Well, the billions that have been spent on the weather satellites have been worth every penny then. It would probably be more accurate just to hang some seaweed outside the door. Unless of course, that is how they do it?

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Hells Kitchen

We are working on a kitchen refurb at the moment. We allowed two weeks and we are now in week four. The client doesn't mind and the kitchen does look good, but I won't half be glad to get it finished!

Time Travel

Listening to the news yesterday I understand that Gordon Brown was at a facility that takes young men on the edge of crime and teaches them a trade. In the past he has also talked about fast-tracking the brighter pupils at school.

I have a suggestion.

At 11 we could divide the kids up into those who are academic achievers and send them to, say, a grammar school. Those who show talents in other directions could go to a new type of secondary school, called perhaps, a secondary modern. Come 16 those in the secondary moderns who were lagging academically, or anyone else who wanted to, could go to technical colleges where they would be taught a trade. I reckon that would fulfill his bright new future vision.

Oh yes, that's what we had up till the 70s when the Labour government decided to destroy it in favour of Comprehensive education. The great idea where if you mix academic children with those of other abilities everyone will improve to the highest level. Just like if you go training at Chelsea's training ground you too will play in the Premiership!

Saturday, July 12, 2008

How to work for nothing.

My mate has been off work for 7 years on incapacity benefit etc. He has decided it is time to go back to work, albeit part time. "The Powers That Be" have been very good at trying to find him something suitable and have given training in areas where he wanted it.

Another section of TPTB have informed him that all the money he earns will be deducted from his benefits and also his rent and council tax allowances will have to be reviewed.

So exctly where is the incentive to return to work when you can end up with no financial gain if not financially worse off?

He doesn't expect them to pay him his full benefit plus keep his wage, but if they deducted 50% until earnings hit parity with benefits it would at least offer some encouragement. If he is financially worse off he will jack in the job even if it does mean his self-esteem will take a knock.

I see no ships

According to the BBC website, at 1'o'clock this morning visibility will be very good.

No, it won't. It'll be dark. I won't be able to see a bloody thing.

And to think, the BBC used to be the fount of all knowledge.