Thursday, August 31, 2006


I've learnt a lovely new word. Englishry.

I bet you'd diss your mate if he proposed it in a game of Scrabble. Englishry? You what? It's not a word, mate!

Well it is. But even if you look for the word, there's not a lot of it about. Not even in the wonderful Wikipedia. Largely because it's a legal term, which was repealed by Edward III in 1340. But law all the same.

It was an old law even at the time, dating back to the Conquest, which stated that if a man was found slain, he was presumed to be Norman unless proved to be English.

If it could not be proved that he was English, those living in the hundred in which he was found were fined.

Quite smart really, of the Normans, I'd say. "Murder your own to your hearts' content, but snaffle one of ours and we'll sting you where it hurts. In your pocket!" Seriously. Clever move for a small invading force. But the wish of the Commons to repeal it is indicative of the great change. Everyone was (and wanted to be) English. And no-one was gagging for an ID card to prove it!

In the same parliament Ed3 gave the first tax relief for the poor. It was stressed that it was not the wish of the king or the magnates nor of the commons that the new tax should be extended to 'poor cottagers or those who lived by their labour.' I agree entirely, the tax threshold should start at 35K...but that's another post...

Now while Ed3 is my favourite King, it should be noted that in 1340, he'd been abroad for the best part of two years.

He'd left his heavily pregnant queen in Ghent, as surety for his debts (where she subsequently gave birth to John of Gaunt (Ghent). And now he needed parliament to grant taxes. They would grant no further taxation without concessions, but he was prepared to grant what they wanted.

This process of creating legislation - responding to social demands in return for extraordinary taxation - was effectively selling laws. As a result it has bee attacked as a haphazard legislative programme. It certainly suggests he had no domestic legislative agenda at the time - how could he, he'd been away for a couple of years?

But was a responsive approach to lawgiving a negative thing? After all, most modern laws are passed n reaction to changing social circumstances and pressure from the grassroots. And he needed the goodwill of parliament (as well as the taxes) to finance the bedrock of his policy: to keep he enemies of England on the defensive and in their own lands.

If you would like to know more about Ed3, I commend you most highly to a new biography, wot I'm reading. Click the image link and buy it, even!

Categories: English Language_, History_, England_

Wednesday, August 23, 2006


I'd just like to say I now have permission to use this shot. Great innit? You must look at this guy, Gene Wilburn's photos. Here. If you're reading Rupe, what do you think?

Here starteth ye olde original poste:

I don't want to talk to you no more, you empty headed animal food trough wiper. I fart in your general direction. Your mother was a hamster and your father smelt of elderberries.

Is there someone else up there we can talk to?
No, now go away or I shall taunt you a second time.

Not really my loyal readers! I have been so lax lately that I am really charmed that you all still keep coming back. Thank you. I really appreciate it.

I have a number of posts researched, if not prepared, (yeah yeah yeah, that's what I tell the client all the time!)

However, I do have some fine photo-journalism... (What? In my own way, like the bublifuk post...) of one of my experiences in the hundred and one things to do with a courgette series - it is novel... (new! Not a bloody book!) (Phew!)

I have a bollocks post inspired by Sperestillan here but with much more punk and court cases, as well as medieval weaponry, as you might expect.

And getting back to the elderberries...I have approached a really good photographer, to see if I can use his elderberry image, because I can't take a shot like that, no matter how hard I try. The shame of it that my dear Papa was a professional photographer!

However, the elderberries are fit to drop with all this rain. My wine-making cannot commence until the picking of the berries, but I've got to go to a wedding tomorrow. (Unless Kenny bottles again in which case the bride has to go home to China....)

So maybe the weekend will be a post frenzy...?

Friday, August 18, 2006

A Lefty Lexicon

Term - followed by usage or meaning from here.

Agenda - describes any collection of policies: 'equality agenda' for instance. Invariably needs to be 'taken forward'.

Aggressive outreach - the process of actively soliciting trade for social workers. Generally employed when 'customers' fail to show required enthusiasm for services on offer.

Beacon of excellence - archaism: any organ of state that achieved - or 'delivered' - what it was supposed to.

Best practice - normally 'established' when a Lefty wants to saddle a process with more complexity. Replaces 'working it out yourself'.

Child-centred - education: "we can't be bothered to teach them… perhaps they'll do it themselves".

Class - grouping people by the contents of their wallet rather than, say, how they think, feel or behave as individuals.

Consultation - a formal system for ignoring public views while patronising them at the same time. London's Congestion Charge for instance.

Community leader - someone plucked from obscurity to represent 'the views of the community' for the purposes of 'consultation'. NB never elected to this position.

Critique - media, academia: same as 'rebuttal'. When a Lefty alleges that someone's writing is 'riddled with factual inaccuracies' then mysteriously fails to identify any.

Delivery - as in "delivered against targets". Means 'achieve'.

Disproportionate - foreign affairs: Describes any act by USA or Israel.

- what we do if we suggest that a favoured Lefty client group may contain members who are not wholly beyond criticism as individuals.

Diversity - creating a workforce based on how people look rather than on their skills or aptitude

Equal - as in 'opportunities': describes the desire to have a workforce resemble the population it comes from, rather than matched to the task in hand. See 'diversity'.

Egalitarian - "if I can't have one, then neither can you". Shared misery much better than unevenly scattered joy.

Evidence based - backing policy decisions with selective social science research.

Fascism/Nazism - apparently the 'opposite' of Socialism - despite sharing party members, ideology and - in National Socialism - the name.

Gender issues - grouping people by their sex rather than how they think, feel or behave as individuals.

'Green' issues - "if we can't control the means of production then we'll close it down". NB. the US is the 'biggest polluter in the world' which is wholly unrelated to the fact it's the world's most productive economy.

Hate-crime - same as 'normal' crime as far as victims are concerned - but much more distressing for Lefties.

Hate-speech - "shut up!".

Human rights - using the legal system to pursue political ends.

Inclusive - Means 'drop entry standards until anyone can get in'.

Impartial - media, BBC: the balance achieved by attacking the Opposition for being Conservative and attacking the Government for being insufficiently Lefty. In partnership with… - Government: "this way, none of us get the blame when nothing happens!".

Inappropriate - "I don't like this" - no explanation for what or whom must ever be given.

Intolerance - Intolerance can only committed against certain defined groups of people. These do not include, Americans, the middle class, white manual workers, rural people, business and Christians obviously.

Institutional racism - 'racism' in a workforce that is achieved unknowingly and in ways that cannot be specifically defined.

Islamophobic - anyone who objects to having their transport blown up on the way to work.

Israel - see 'disproportionate' and 'legitimate grievances'. Country the size of Wales, with 5m inhabitants, that is entirely responsible for any and all delinquent Islamist behaviour the world over.

Issues around… - "I may be out of my depth here".

Justice - Government: as in 'social justice'. Means taking money earned by the general public to give to particular groups that Lefties approve of. Replaces market economics.

Key - Government: most things are 'key', in particular 'drivers', 'learnings', 'deliverables'. In education, all school 'stages' are 'key'.

Legitimate grievances - foreign affairs: why we're all to blame for deranged Islamists murdering people in the developed world.

Liaise - the day-to-day process of Lefty Government. Replaces 'work'.

Learnings - means 'lessons'.

Marx - a Victorian gentleman whose theories cannot be disproved by observation, experience or factual evidence. See 'religion' and 'post-modernism'.

Multi-cultural - All culture is valid - unless Western in some way. Usually to be 'celebrated' and always found to be 'vibrant'. See 'diversity'.

Nazi - informal: describes non-Lefty views and useful to link with people Lefties don't like. Thus Germany's Nazi period is the only noteworthy formative experience of Pope Benedict.

- Non Governmental Organisation - the repository of all moral authority in Lefty World and whose words and motives may never be questioned.

Organised labour - what Lefties used to be interested in.

Palestinians - archetype 'victims' no matter how many teenagers they murder in bars and fast food outlets. Never responsible for anything they do - or done in their name - because of 'root causes' or 'legitimate grievances'.

Post-modern - modern French 'philosophical': literature claiming that no account of events can be trusted. 'Texts' must be 'deconstructed' for their hidden meanings - except those by post-modernists, to be taken at face value.

Precautionary Principle - allows unnecessary actions which lack "evidence based" backing.

Progressive - describes ideas generally thought up around 40 years ago - that still don't work.

al Qaeda - Muslim 'militants' who for some reason or other continue to kill far more Muslims than people of any other faith.

Race issues - grouping people by their skin colour as opposed to how they think, feel or behave as individuals.

Racist - means "shut up!" - and is much, much worse than being violent, thoughtless or unkind. In fact, easily the worst crime ever conceived of.

Relevant - education: something badly written, with references to se*x and full of swear-words. Always better than literature by 'dead white people'.

Religion - Christianity: irrational, dangerous belief that material things may not be the principal motive behind human behaviour.
Judaism: most Israelis are Jewish, so probably 'intolerant'.
Islam: always needs to be 'understood'.

Root causes - foreign affairs: Usually need to be 'examined'. Belief in 'root causes' reflects dogged Lefty habit of trying to see contemporary religious issues through the prism of 'class analysis'.

Risk-based - either an excuse not to do something or to take excessive action.

Skills-based - education: "teach the little ba**ards Microsoft Word or something. They don't actually need to know anything…".

Social exclusion - where bad people, behaving badly, somehow became our fault.

South Africa
- a national showcase for Lefty policies with a one-party state, some of the worst crime levels in the world, tragic AIDS mortality and declining economy.

Stereotype - any attempt to describe the general characteristics of a group favoured by Lefties.

Stigmatise - what we do to anti-social people if we ask them to stop.

Subsidised art - art no one would buy.

Sustainability - relates to any actions (or non-actions) that have no relevance to a Department's original purpose.

Take forward - use instead of 'do'.

Terrorist - no such thing. Only people suffering from 'root causes' and 'legitimate grievances'.

Transgressive - term of approval for anything 'challenging established values' - but generally puerile, annoying and dumb.

Unilateral - media, BBC: used to describe any act by the United States in furtherance of its national interest.

United Nations - the NGO of NGOs. All foreign policy has to be 'in partnership with the UN and our European Allies', unless bombing Serbia - which requires neither.

Victim - see 'Terrorist', 'Palestinians', 'gender issues', 'race issues' and 'social exclusion'.

Workers - notional 'class' of people that Lefties once claimed to represent. Now replaced by college lecturers, human rights lawyers, pressure group employees, civil servants with 'liaise' in their job title - and other people you would probably not want over for supper