Monthly Archives: December 2005

On Disproportionate Punishment

Last week in Barnstaple, Devonshire, an eighteen-year-old homeless man named Christopher Brown was sentenced to life in prison for setting fire to two wheelie bins. The sentence was passed under new legislation which permits judges an indeterminate discretion when handing down sentences for any offence which is potentially punishable by a life sentence. Arson is one such offence. This discretion has the effect that, so long as an offence falls within a particular category, no matter how relatively minor it is, a judge can hand down a life sentence. This means that Chrisopher Brown, who harmed no-one and only cause a few pounds’ worth of damage, is now beginning a life sentence. Mr Brown’s choice of fire as his preferred means for his act of petty vandalism, has made the world of difference to the sentence – the arbitrariness of this outcome is astounding. Continue reading

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Oil Explosion

This is pretty fucked up. I was on the train back from Manchester and mistook the oil smoke for a big dark cloud on the horizon. I did think it looked like smoke but obviously assumed it could only be a cloud. Jesus… Continue reading

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The Crimea @ Club NME, Koko, London 09.12.2005

Every band on this planet could do with a frontman like this one. Davey Macmanus is staggering on the line between genius and lunacy with quite some skill. Either it’s just what he does, or … dammit, I want the drugs he’s on!

No further ado, The Crimea launch straight into a sweeping White Russian Galaxy. What goes on in her pretty little head?’. Hell, what I want to know is what goes on in his pretty little head. On second thoughts, maybe I give that one a miss, actually. The Crimea seem oblivious to the fact this is ‘only’ Koko (that’s the Camden Palace to you and I) and most of the people there appear to be First Year fashion victims who’re here for Club NME. They obviously think BIG. But somehow they manage to stay just on the right side of the big fat line that divides the posers on this earth from those who somehow have a godgiven right to do the rock’n’roll thing to the bitter end. Mind you, the guy on the left acts like he’s in the wrong band and would much rather join Status Quo in a large stadium. He likes to strike a pose and his facial expressions would make any budding panto star green with envy. But, somehow, this doesn’t ruin the overall picture. Continue reading

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alternative xmas party…

have you ever felt a bit druidy?

been touched by a cheeky pagan?

well now you have the chance to do both… Continue reading

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Harold Pinter's Nobel Lecture

For anyone who hasn’t seen this, you should make 20 mins or so free to give it a read:

[url],6109,1661516,00.html[/url] Continue reading

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The Conservative Leadership and What it Means for the Rest of Us

“Cameron 3, Blair 1” proclaimed the triumphalist headline of the Evening Standard in Wednesday’s evening edition, referring to David Cameron’s performance at his first Prime Minister’s Questions as the Leader of the Opposition. This rather optimistic and wildly misleading assessment was the latest instalment of what has thus far been a blinkered and repetitive discourse on the implications for British politics of David Cameron’s selection as leader of the Conservative Party. Continue reading

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Amnesty International / Make Some Noise

[i]Is there any justification for this? The self-obsessed, indulgent drivel of John Lennon and Yoko Ono is apparently being co-opted by an organisation – Amnesty International – whose work is immeasurably more valuable than the afforementioned dross. I can’t see the point of this; maybe someone else can:[/i]

[b]Top artists support Amnesty International in ground-breaking global venture[/b]
Four incredible contemporary versions of John Lennon hits will hit the streets on 10 December – classic songs as they’ve never been heard before, performed by an unbeatable line-up of top international artists. Continue reading

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