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  1. History - recommendations?

    I have this suspicion that those people halfway through their lives now will see changes that will challenge your grandmother's in magnitude. Not all of them will be good.
  2. I never cease to be amazed by how so many immigrants know details about how to get asylum, how 'old they should be', how to claim benefits once they arrive. But little things like not raping people or eating pets seems to be the sort of things that they couldn't possibly know and are culturally normal for them; we're constantly reminded that they've been though a lot so we should go easy on them. IMO every new immigrant should get a few days of training on how to behave. If they then misbehave then the whole weight of the law should be thrown at them (including expulsion from the country). There should be absolutely no expectation of leniency for these transgressions. I'd also make sure that there were lots of overt Christians, women, gays and trans people giving the training -- a bit of a nuance, but I'd like them to both realise that living in the country means accepting these people as they are, and I'd also like to challenge them -- if they can't cope with seeing a gay person in a classroom environment without getting angry then you'd surely have to ask whether they'd be able to cope in the real world without endangering this part of the community.
  3. Which Father Ted character are you?

    I quite like these types of things, from a technical standpoint. I think quite a bit of effort goes into setting up the 'expert system' to get the appropriate answers. This amuses me, because, given that it is purely for entertainment, they might as well just use a random number generator.
  4. XP v LINUX

    It is very odd how many people actually quite like the XP interface, yet how it was killed off by Microsoft. I'm sure it was more efficient for many users, as well. I tend to think that the new interfaces aren't actually designed to make things easier, but to be difficult to copy (copyright) and to be more difficult to migrate away from for the users. But I am a bit biased against these changes so it might just be fantastic for everyone other than me. But it is probably the thing that annoys me most about Microsoft and Apple -- when they introduce a new interface you have no choice but to submit. I quite like the way you can choose which look-and-feel you want with Linux (although this is probably the biggest negative factor in that it confuses potential users).
  5. I've met spies. They're the most boring people imaginable. So I'm not surprised by these allegations against Steptoe.
  6. Halal food

    Long distance transportation of animals is pretty dire. But the old local abattoir was also a pretty grim place. I suppose the best outcome would have been to have mandated maximum travel distances/conditions for animals and have had better conditions in the abattoir. This would have increased prices, though. However, I'm not convinced it would have been by as much as was claimed) -- or, at least, it wouldn't have done for meat of a quality that you'd want to eat. But it might have increased costs significantly at burger joints, etc. Pretty much.
  7. Companies ... exploiting women...

    Oh, they wouldn't actually use the skills. Once in position it will all be about filling in forms. But they think it is important, and that is where there's money to be made. A bit like doing Myers-Briggs or getting candidates to do role-play.
  8. Companies ... exploiting women...

    I actually think it is a good way to check attitudes as part of an interview. Sort of a 'drop everything -- do this, right now. No training, no experience, think on your feet, push to your limits, don't question it because there isn't time and other people (that know) think it is necessary -- we've got to do it otherwise we lose the customer'. If I had the time I'd partner with pret a manger (or whatever passes for millenial-cool these days), package it up and use it for selection for junior management positions in blue-chips.
  9. Blackface is one of those strange things. I don't really want it to exist (because it is boring), but it surely sits alongside things like the pantomime dame (which insults trans and women) or drag acts (ditto), adults dressing as kids, kids dressing as adults, young people putting on prosthetics to look like old people, etc. I'm kind of happy to accept that some people find things offensive and stop them -- but only real offence. We've got to a position now where people are desperately looking for things to be offended by... That said, I'm doubly happy with stopping things like blackface because it stops the minstrels, which really weren't very entertaining. But, anyway, there is one aspect in that report that I find very disturbing: The blackface minstrels weren't condescending. This is inventing racism where it didn't exist at the time. There was and is dreadful racism in the world, but there's no need to invent more. 'Minstrels' where white people blacking up because everyone wanted to hear 'black' music (dixieland, etc) and that was the only way they could get a job. It is the equivalent of black people having to white up in order to get a job. By the 1930's it was a pastiche of that -- no-one really knew why they were blackface, they just were. By the 1970's it was pastiche of pastiche -- a weird thing that made no sense to anyone but that persisted anyway by some sort of cultural inertia. But it certainly wasn't a deliberate lampooning of black people. [It just seems to me to be similar as the whole suffragette thing -- for the 'common-man', women in the UK got the vote on equal terms 10 years after males. For most of the middle-class, women got the vote 34 years after males. For the wealthy, women had a period of 90 years without the vote. Yet the history revisionists make out that it is all because of a deeply rooted political sexism that existed through history. ]
  10. Steptoe and dead child abuse dosser

    The problem with the majority of homeless people isn't that they've not got a home. That is merely the symptom. To suggest that the problems would all be resolved if they were given a home is moronic.
  11. 4x more blue badge thefts...

    Because it isn't the car that is disabled, it is the person. The holder is free to use that badge in any vehicle they're travelling in. But it is an important point -- this flexibility pretty much makes policing the blue badge system impossible. Shops, etc, can't even look at the individual to see if they're 'disabled' before challenging, because so many disabilities are invisible (or, that's the official line). They probably need a different system -- a blue badge linked to a single vehicle, then a 'scratch off the date' paper version for those times when they're not in their regular car. I suppose particularly odd cases could apply for a special badge, but that approach would surely cover 99% of situations. This wouldn't cover other family members driving the owners car, but it would be a start. But that approach would never ever be taken because it would absolutely definitely be horrendously disabilityist.
  12. I remember the craze about the Welsh Triangle (my neck of the woods) back in the 70s. Loads of sightings, was it military, was it kids, was it aliens? I never saw anything, but I did get the book -- https://www.amazon.co.uk/Welsh-Triangle-Peter-Paget/dp/0586049118 It was and is a fascinating read (particularly now -- it is a record of the world in the 70's), but even more fascinating is the power of Google to research each chapter, finding out about each and every hoax, prank and (yes) military exercise that explains away all of the sightings.
  13. Well, it wouldn't be an easy mistake to make (at least hombre vs mujer plus a few gender specific bits in the rest of the text). I'd suggest it would be more likely that had loads of applicants and they'd written a form letter that they sent out to the clearly underqualified ones -- it would have been 'easy' to make it 'male' and not realise that they had a few females in the list. This would be an example of gender assumption, but it wouldn't be exclusion on the basis of gender (in fact, that scenario would assume that they'd not actually noticed gender at that stage).
  14. I've read it. There is a bit of interpretation going on. It seems to me that they said "needed a man who could handle the pace of working with big companies" -- 25 year old goes along and thinks they can get the big contracts and they're saying the need more experience. While she's making out that they said "needed a man who could handle the pace of working with big companies" -- she's saying they said a woman can't do the job when they've actually made a grammatical mistake. Difficult to know exactly what has happened, but this isn't as clear cut as it seems at first glance.
  15. What is crazy is that even complaining that this sort of thing is an institutional misandry and should be stopped, will mark you out as some sort of sexist that needs to be shot.