The Aged P

…just toasting and ruminating….

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18 June
Comments Off on “Never Mind The Kids – Go Out To Work” UK Govt Tells Mums

“Never Mind The Kids – Go Out To Work” UK Govt Tells Mums


Wow…something from an Anglican Bishop that would not go down too well at a North London dinner party? I kid you not…

Rt Rev Paul Butler, the Bishop of Durham, warned government policies promoting childcare were focused on the interests on parents returning to work and not what was best for children.

The Bishop was taking part in  a House of Lord debate about Samantha Cameron’s…whoops..David Cameron’s latest get-the-women-out-to-work-at taxpayers’-expense wheeze

David Cameron’s Childcare Bill offers to double free childcare for three and four-year-olds from 15 hours per week during term time to 30 hours. The Tories argue the measure will ‘help parents who want to work’.

The good bishop had the sheer audacity to imply that the so-called Conservative government’s plans were “putting pressure on parents and mothers in particular to be valued as economic units rather than having the most important role of parenting their children valued”.

He’s battling a lost cause, of course. We have been told that our rulers want another 500,000 more women in the workplace by 2016 and the new child care proposals will help the UK reach that target.


Who the hell said that? It’s a target we need to achieve and we need to achieve it, like, yesterday. Conveniently it’s a nice round number that can easily be remembered and constantky quoted, not like, say, 437,492. Whoever heard of a f###ing target like that?

OK – but why? What is the rationale behind that nice round plump quotable number?

It’s the EU, ennit….

According to the Treasury the target of getting nearly 500,000 women into work “would allow the UK to match the female employment rate in Germany and the second-highest overall employment rate in the G7 grouping of major economic powers.”2 The EU’s five year Gender Equality Strategy states that Europe has a target employment rate of 75% overall for women and men by 2020. 3 According to EU data4 the “UK was 1 of 10 countries to have reached the Barcelona targets for children aged 0-3yrs old. In the UK, 35% of children aged 0-3 were in formal childcare in 2011, although most (30%) of children were in part-time childcare”.

 …and those awkward mums who who don’t want to spend the pre-school years working but want to be at home caring full time for them are giving two fingers to the Barcelona target.

Trouble is that it’s not only the state that wants both parents working – there’s a whole raft of commercial interests that need parents to spend in order to increase profit. Spending is good and the advertising industry and its willing accomplices in the media exist to squeeze those extra pounds from our pockets and purses.

But ‘twas not ever the case. When we (both teachers) married in 1967 we knew we wanted a family but we were prepared to wait 3/4 years to put some money aside for the time when my wife would no longer be working. We had a mortgage for our modest suburban semi-detached that took a chunk of our income to repay but did not overstretch us (Building  Socieities in those days had very strict lending rules). During the four years before our firstborn we were very careful with our money. We went out to eat and/or drink very rarely. We did not take holidays but instead maybe went out on the odd day trip. Although we both liked to dress fashionably we were not slaves to style – and when the kids came along my wife gave up work to be a full time stay at home mum and we continued to be careful spenders.

Our only extravagance was a car. We’d seen mums struggling onto buses and trains with children and pushchairs and bags and  felt that a 1970s lower middle class family could do better than that. But it was not, of course, a new car. Like everyone else we began with a well worn second hand Ford Anglia. In other words (how old fashioned) we cut our coat according to our cloth. We “made do”…baked our own cakes, made our own squash, sewed a lot of our own clothes.

Eventually, once our second born started primary school my wife returned to a measure of part-time teaching and we were able to enjoy a few more creature comforts. But we never regretted the frugality of those early years. The love and interest and attention we (or rather my wife) was able to devote to our children could never be measured through quantifiable units – you cannot easily measure quality.

Today’s parents appear to be unwilling to make such sacrifices. A new car (or cars) seem to be de rigueur. Holidays abroad are simply a must-have. Restaurants and pubs now need to be children friendly so that meals can be eaten out and a lively social life maintained.

But this costs money – so both parents need to work to afford such goodies…which is why the government is pushing at an open door when, according to the bishop, it hints that a stay at home parent is…well…to put it bluntly a tad…unpatriotic…

 But debating the plan in the Lords, the Bishop of Durham warned the focus on childcare creates the impression ‘that a parent choosing not to work but to raise their child themselves is somehow not doing the best for the nation or the child’.

 Sorry, Bish old bean – you are just a voice in the wilderness…..(now where have I heard that phrase before?)


08 January
Comments Off on The Left Has Always Said Prison Doesn’t Work – Except For Rapists & “Hate Crimes”…Hmmm..

The Left Has Always Said Prison Doesn’t Work – Except For Rapists & “Hate Crimes”…Hmmm..


Can somebody please help me out here because I am so confused.

It’s this Ched Edwards thing.

For as long as I can remember it’s been the “accepted wisdom” (i.e. the pronouncements of the BBC, The Guardian and our moral betters from the Great and the Good) that PRISON DOES NOT WORK. Not only does it not work because prisons become “universities of crime” but it is based on the false premise of “punishment”. Punishment, we are told, springs from the quaintly old fashioned concept of “revenge” – and revenge is not good….it is so…uncivilised to just lock someone up and keep them outside society.

The only true path for the law breaker is reform and redemption. Prison will make him or her depressed, morose and undervalued and these feelings will be drivers of further incidents of unco-operative behaviour.

No, far better to use procedures such as community service or probation or electronic supervision, helping the law breaker to re-engage with society.

Hence murderers, terrorists, burglars, thieves and those who violently assault and maim others are only made worse by imprisonment – the longer they are inside the more dehumanised they become. Hence very long prison sentences…20 years, 40 years, real life….are pointless. So many murderers are back on the streets after seven years or so.

The victims? Who the hell cares? They need to move on even if they can’t forgive or forget.

So what’s my problem?

It’s simply this. If PRISON DOES NOT WORK for murderers, thieves etc. why does it work for rapists, homophobes and racists? What is it about these people which makes them unqualified for redemption/reform but prime candidates for solid old fashioned PUNISHMENT?

I think we should be told……..

21 February
Comments Off on Surely Tim Wigmore At The Telegraph Doesn’t Believe That Stuff About UKIP Fed To Him By Tory HQ?

Surely Tim Wigmore At The Telegraph Doesn’t Believe That Stuff About UKIP Fed To Him By Tory HQ?

The Telegraph’s fresh faced and youthful Tim Wigmore sees the Farage/Clegg debate as a chance for UKIP to stage a comeback?

“It’s a chance to put himself back to the front of the political debate at a time when the Conservative Party’s strategy of relentlessly talking down its own prospects and talking up Ukip’s is creating a situation where Ukip can increase its vote share by five times at a by-election and leave many regarding the result as a failure.”

Oh come off it, Tim old bean – you and your DT colleagues are the only ones who are still peddling that CCHQ canard. File it alongside sluts, facebook, mandela tweets etc etc….the DT and DM have been fed all this rubbish by the postgrad Tory interns and nothing has dented UKIP’s steady 3rd in most polls.

Trouble is, I suspect, that the “many” in your sentence refers to the MPs, hacks and lobbyists who get together at Westminster watering holes rather than to the folk outside in the street and on the buses and trains…

09 January
Comments Off on UK Radio Talk Show Host Wonders If A 58 Yr Old Woman (Carole Middleton) Is Too Old To Wear Clothes Like This…..

UK Radio Talk Show Host Wonders If A 58 Yr Old Woman (Carole Middleton) Is Too Old To Wear Clothes Like This…..

Nick Ferrari, a UK radio talk show host, wondered if Carole Middleton was dressing appropriately for her age (58 yrs)


This picture made the newspapers because writers felt that, at 58, she was too old to be wearing clothes like that. So Nick Ferrari wants to know: Is Carole Middleton too old to be racy and lacy?


Nick Ferrari is 53….



Pic h/t Splash   Contact Music

31 December
Comments Off on The “Man Cold”…..

The “Man Cold”…..

As a man maybe I should be outraged by this and calling it a “sexist slur”…..but I have to confess it does have a slight ring of truth…..

25 December
Comments Off on CHRISTMAS……






07 June
Comments Off on How My Dad Fell Out Of Love With Trade Unions

How My Dad Fell Out Of Love With Trade Unions

At the end of WW2 my dad was demobbed from the army after nearly five years of service. Finishing up as a sergeant he was offered the chance of a commission if he stayed but, like most men of his time he’d had enough of military life and chose to return to civvie street.

Before the war he had worked in a grocer’s shop but, instead of returning to slicing bacon he decided to get a job on the buses working for London Transport. After a brief spell as a conductor he finally qualified as a driver, operating mainly from garages in South London.

London Transport was a closed shop which meant that drivers and conductors had to be members of the powerful Transport and General Workers Union – the TGWU. He’d never been in  a union before so began to attend meetings in the garage.

The first thing that puzzled him was the size of the meetings. In a garage that employed several hundred staff attendance rarely went above a dozen – including the three officials who chaired the meeting. As a new boy he kept quiet for a while until at one meeting most of the agenda was taken up with a motion congratulating the Communist governments of Poland and Hungary for their success in establishing a true workers democracy.

Seeing that those governments were really just puppet regimes imposed by the occupying Russian armies my dad not only voted against the motion but voiced his concern that the meeting was claiming to be the voice of several hundred when in fact only a handful ever intended.

He was immediately marked out as a troublemaker. He found himself placed on awkward shifts and the most difficult routes by a management that was intimidated by the union. He stopped going to union meetings and began to resent the weekly event on pay day when staff had to line up at the union table to pay their compulsory dues. Being short of temper and not easily intimidated he used to throw the money onto the table and declare, in a loud voice “ Here’s your blood money”

Things came to a head when the TGWU called a 24 hour bus strike to start at noon on a certain day. Dad’s bus was about ten minutes from the garage when his conductor rang the bell and told the passengers to get off. Several of them started arguing, pointing out they had already paid the fare to the end of the route.

Dad got out of his cab to find out what was going on. When the conductor said she was pitching the passengers off because it was time for the strike to start my dad told them to stay and he would finish the route. When they reached the garage all the passengers got off and came round to shake his hand.

Nothing more was said that day but, when the strike was over and dad went to collect his bike at the end of his shift to cycle home he discovered about half a dozen people around his bike which was on the floor, bent and broken. One of the union men, scarcely able to suppress a grin said that it had been “accidently” run over by a bus being moved around the garage.

Since his was the only bike damaged and it was in an area where buses didn’t usually turn he quickly got the picture. It was a punishment for breaking union solidarity.

He didn’t say anything, just left and carried the bike home.

At the beginning of his next shift he arrived early and went to the union office and found the TGWU rep.  “About my bike” he said and seized the man by the arms and pushed him up against the wall

“Each time any little “accident” happens again” he said “I’ll come round and punch you on the nose”

At the end of his shift he fully expected to be hauled in by the boss and/or the police but nothing happened and, oddly enough, there never were any more “accidents”……

18 April
Comments Off on New President Of China Hails A Taxi…..Too Good To be True – And It Wasn’t….LOL..

New President Of China Hails A Taxi…..Too Good To be True – And It Wasn’t….LOL..

So the great Xi Jinping taxi story (new President of China jumps into a cab to show he’s just an ordinary bloke) proved to be a hoax…..

Red faced media big cheeses in China issued grovelling apologies and, natch, airbrushed the original story from their sites.

But one of the reasons the hoax gained legs was because it sounded exactly like the type of fairy story fantasy “man of the people” pumped out by the agitprop churners of every party based dictatorship.

Beloved Leader “suddenly” decides to leave office, go out onto the street and hail a taxi. A few minutes later the cab deposits said leader outside his humble abode where Mrs Leader is in the midst of cooking noodles…..and, astonishingly, media hacks are present throughout the whole journey.

Fact is these characters are as distant from the great unwashed as any medieval monarch. China, Cuba, North Korea and the jolly old USSR – any communist regime – is based on dynastic rivalries not on any truly democratic process. The party is a divine vanguard whose members know the needs of ordinary people much better than the ordinary people themselves. But, because they claim to rule in the name of the masses, unlike a medieval king whose power came from a hotline to heaven, They have to pretend to be “just like us”…..

Maybe next time his PR guys should suggest a swim……

21 March
Comments Off on Thanks For Working Hard – I Need You To Be Taxed So I Can Buy Booze & Ciggies

Thanks For Working Hard – I Need You To Be Taxed So I Can Buy Booze & Ciggies

Our new ruling class?

Please pass me that metal bucket – I just need to put it over my head and bang it with a hammer for eight hours…

06 March
Comments Off on “Another example of the whingeing, self-serving, poisonous b******s that seem to have become your hallmark”

“Another example of the whingeing, self-serving, poisonous b******s that seem to have become your hallmark”

(esp. of a person) Having an untidy or disheveled appearance.

disheveled – dishevelled – untidy – slovenly – scruffy

No wonder the police as an institution have become increasingly regarded as an ineffective, inefficient bunch of jobsworths – unfairly in my opinion because the majority of officers do a hard and often thankless task remarkably well considering the restrictions imposed on their actions by “political correctness”. But you do wonder, sometimes, if some senior officers undermine the reputation of the troops on the ground by their unwillingness to use discretion in cases of “political correctness”

Recently a conservative MP was the subject of a lengthy investigation by Sussex Police for the ultimate 21st century sin – racism. The Race Card was played by a man who claimed that the MP had described him as “unkempt” – thus demeaning his “gypsy” heritage.

In an email to Mr Loughton complaining of his treatment by the authority, Mr Francis said he was insultingly described in an official council document as unkempt, although he bathed regularly.
But Mr Loughton wrote back: ‘As regards the specific whinge about being described as “unkempt”, given the meaning of the word as “untrimmed, dishevelled and rough” it strikes me as eminently accurate.’
The MP, who describes Mr Francis as a ‘serial complainer’ and his most problematic constituent, added that the complaint was ‘another example of the whingeing, self-serving, poisonous b******s that seem to have become your hallmark’

After several months the investigation, which probably cost £100.000 did not lead to a prosecution and was filed for no action. Strange, is it not, that in this case the police claimed they had no option but to pursue the matter but could quite happily use their discretion and not pursue the matter of 1,000 suspicious deaths at Mid Staffs Hospital…..


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