In Rome today

UPDATES

21:44: Both acquitted. She still has calumnia – 3 years. Court has spoken. Good night to all.

21:41: One hour warning not given or was that last one it? Telegraph behind in the news and quoting Andrea.

21:23: 10 minutes.

20:46: Andrea Vogt finally tweets: Trial of first instance in Perugia – judges deliberated from 10 a.m. to midnight. Many speculating about judicial rift.

I wrote that earlier, with Bruno as one of them.

20:26: Though my account today has been largely without emotion, that of a cold fish, there is, understandably, a lot of emotion out there – I’ve been seeing it all day. That quote earlier about there being no winners is true.

If K and S go down, then the Kercher family are finally spared any more hell – bankrupt, health of both parents broken. But enormous angst for the families of the perps, also broke and in great debt.…

GOP candidate odds

My first post written sideways from bed, LOL.

American Thinker usually has the GOP lowdown and they speak of people deserting Rand Paul for Ted Cruz. Reason is Paul backtracking in an attempt at electability.

However, conservatives need a conviction politician this time round, someone with principles on show. Thus, even though the good ole boys might like Jeb Bush, conservatives prefer Scott Walker or increasingly – Ted Cruz.

Here are Paddy Power odds:

gop odds

The fastidiousness of eggs

scrambled egg

Tastes change as time goes on and what one’s metabolism can stomach also changes. Years ago, I could take hot, spicy food but now only mild or piquant. English mustard is too much, French is about right.

My taste in eggs has changed. Where once it could have been Benedict, Florentine, sunnyside-up, easy over, hard-boiled, soft-boiled, coddled or scrambled, with or without halved baby tomatoes, ham, cheese, salmon, spinach, with or without Hollandaise, now it’s been reduced to two dishes.

I can no longer eat boiled, reminded constantly of having raided the nest, nor look at sunnyside-up, looking at that raw placenta-like film on top and that hungry eye staring up at me.

So it has to be whisked, after all the chicken bits and bits of shell have been carefully extracted by the edge of a teaspoon. With the whisked and aerated mix in the bowl, I can go one of two ways but first the additive will have been chopped fine.…

The only decent leader out there

This is an open letter to readers from this blogger.

Most readers of this blog believe that the things which qualify or disqualify any leader or public figure in our minds are integrity, ethics, spine and working for our country. And we all know, judging by voting patterns and comments at online news sites, that for many out there, those qualities do not seem to matter all that much.

This is how low our society has fallen that inveterate liars like Cameron and Miliband can still find support, tribal support. We only need look at two recent events to see it illustrated.

First is the leftist attack on Nigel Farage at the pub last Sunday.

Ed West is Conservative Party so this is worth reading about Farage and decency:

There was something genuinely frightening about the disturbance aimed at Nigel Farage and his family this weekend; what’s scary is that there seem to be so many people in our country who think a man having lunch with his family is a legitimate target for such a stunt because of his views.

Freedom versus sewage

I’m deeply suspicious of female psychologists and for good and sufficient reasons, having seen them in operation over a few decades in education. That would require a tome to detail all the cases.

So it’s with that suspicion that I approach this woman, not helped by this “foremost” word:

First time accepted submitter sharkbiter sends note that one of the UK’s foremost psychotherapists has concerns that smartphones may be harmful to the mental health of children.

“Julie Lynn Evans has been a child psychotherapist for 25 years, working in hospitals, schools and with families, and she says she has never been so busy. ‘In the 1990s, I would have had one or two attempted suicides a year – mainly teenaged girls taking overdoses, the things that don’t get reported. Now, I could have as many as four a month.’…. Issues such as cyber-bullying are, of course, nothing new, and schools now all strive to develop robust policies to tackle them, but Lynn Evans’ target is both more precise and more general.

A trick to skew progress or alter results [2]

This is the second example and there is nothing speculative about it whatever.  It is how the left actually goes about it.

There is a phenomenon, well-known, whereby a blogger will post an exposé in, say, 2006, then keep adding examples of it over the next few years. The conclusion is that there is a political philosophy using certain tactics. We call it “left” but it could be labelled anything. 

As post after post goes up by various people who’ve noticed it, there’s a wealth of information on how these people operate. However, blogposts go off the front page, don’t they and into archives and most bloggers are in the here and now.

In 2015, a blogger might run yet another exposé and now, with all these previous posts by various people in mind, he uses the term “bloody leftists” and is called out on it – what evidence has he that the left does anything wrong?…

A trick to skew progress or alter results [1]

Thanks to haiku for pointing to this.  There is an element of the speculative to this one, the second post later is very much a constant danger and not speculative in the least.

One thing many of us have identified and commented on is the “mix up”, the seemingly inexplicable shambles, which eventually becomes understandable because of the chain of command.

In Russian, it is known as “polni ablom”.  It’s when systems fail and all goes wrong, often through cascade failure.  Some call it SNAFU.  While everyone accepts that this happens, there is a school of thought which says there is something quite deliberate to some of them, in putting in an infrastructure which could well lead to it later.

And that brings us back to our old friend – incompetence or design?…

Quite worrying developments today at the appeal

A statement was made today by one of the judges which has thrown two of the three sides into some confusion and consternation, plus all the watchers. Both those who want to see the two perps finally nailed but also the Knox camp will be quite worried about statements made today. It does seem that Knox counsel are aware of it – they went beserk.

The players

There are three main interested sides – the prosecution, Knox’s defence and Sollecito’s defence.

In Italy, there are two factions in public life, so to speak. One is the law abiding who generally side with the judiciary as it’s their only defence against the other faction. Then there is the other, small faction with Berlusconi, the mafia, corrupt pollies, corrupt judges and lawyers – the PTB down through the community.

What came out clearly in the Hellman/Zanetti appeal in 2011 was that the illegal way it was conducted, the travesties which saw both perps acquitted and released, caused a storm in Italian judicial circles and the very best prosecutor they could find launched a long and scathing appeal on the grounds of miscarriage of justice.…

The loudest noise in the ocean

1024px-Blue_whale_size.svg

File this under Useless Information if you like. What is the loudest noise made by creatures of the ocean?

The answer for any individual creature is the blue whale – and that takes in the land as well], it’s not the loudest collective noise, i.e. one which submarines might encounter.  That prize goes to the trillions of a variety of shrimp called Alphaidae in shrimp layers in tropical and sub-tropical waters.

The sound comes to 246 decibels but adjusted for sound travelling five times as fast underwater, is still around 160 decibels.  Given that a jet plane makes about 140 decibels, it gives you an idea why they interfere with sonar.  Subs need to stick their mast up through the layer – if below – in order to hear anything.…

Wednesday

Not going to mention the Airbus crash, for fear of upsetting Ivan. Speaking of flying craft which strain to stay aloft – uh huh:

uss

NASA has successfully tested a new space drive that doesn’t use a propellant and shouldn’t work, at least according to the laws of physics, according to a story that broke in Wired.UK. The drive, called the Cannae Drive, worked in the NASA directed test, defying physics.

Major party sociopathy on display

Now we know David Cameron is definitely going, we’ll win back Ukip voters who hate him, say Tories

There is something seriously cloud cuckoo land about this, completely divorced from reality. It’s a lack of understanding of how a substantial part of the voting population see it. By making such a statement or holding that belief, they are assuming the ex-Tory dissidents are swayed only by Cameron as a person, that we haven’t a brain and haven’t moved on, that we’re just queueing up waiting to come back.

They are equating us with the deadheads who have stayed with LibLabCon no matter what and will vote tribally. Since they hijacked the 1922, they’ve forgotten the ill feeling on it. The ill feeling when gay marriage was ramrodded through. The whole way real conservatives were treated within the party. This is not how Roger Helmer, Douglas Carsell or Mark Reckless were. Those men left on a thing called “principle”.…

Privacy and civil disobedience

Vox Day points out, on privacy:

The only way one can reasonably expect to gain any privacy … is by flooding the system

Overloading them with data. I can’t see the applicability in real life but online, it might be possible to have enough trigger words or something any enquiry will trigger. Beyond most of us but am happy to be corrected on this.

The broader point, on civil disobedience, is a good one but that only works if everyone does it. Of course, the Nazi way of dealing with that was that if there was non-cooperation, they just took selected citizens and strung them up.

Seems to me that it must not be overt. Seems to me that sacrifices have to be made. for example, my way to deal with the BBC is not to have a tele. With the gas company – not to use gas and so on.…

Meredith Kercher – eve of the verdict

OK, here’s the plan at N.O. about the case. Either tomorrow in the late evening or the following day, Thursday, maybe around 10 a.m., a decision will be handed down by the Italian Supreme Court. I’ll post this now and then one after the verdict. Even then I’ll not speak of guilt or innocence but of what’s likely to happen after that.

The Mail has made two errors, one some days back, the latest today. It says Sollecito has blown a hole in Knox’s alibi, as if this is new. No he hasn’t, at least no more than he did months back and that will surprise you coming from me.

- Sollecito, 30, has submitted a withering 306-page court document in an attempt to distance himself from Knox at their final appeal
– Claims he now can’t remember whether Knox was with him when Meredith Kercher was stabbed 47 times in November, 2011, as he was stoned
– Added that he did not have a motive for the murder, but Knox did
– Said he didn’t know her well enough to help her carry out the murder
– Expert said it appeared to be ‘brutal last ditch effort’ to save his own skin

Gothic castle in America

outside-Chrismark-Castle-side

There was that picture of American roads and how run down they are.  Now an American obsession – taking a bit of ye olde and reproducing it in a peculiarly American way.

This gothic castle is a case in point. It was the dream home of Christopher Mark, the man who had it built in Connecticut, but a tricky divorce and some failed business attempts meant that it had to go on the market.…