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Tuesday, 30 November 2010

Snow pics?

Opportunity to post your snow pics and links in the comments...

Monday, 29 November 2010

Not Everyone Follows Lord Sugar. He Tells us of a SUPERMARKET SCAM! So I share it Here.

via http://www.facebook.com/notes/lord-sugar/lord-sugar-wants-to-let-all-his-followers-know-about-a-scam-in-supermarkets-this/170342286319609


Lord Sugar wants to let all his followers know about a scam in supermarkets this Christmas that a fan advised him of recently
by Lord Sugar on Monday, 29 November 2010 at 01:32
Just in time for the Christmas rush!
CHECK YOUR RECEIPTS BEFORE LEAVING THE CHECK-OUT / this is not a joke I bought a bunch of stuff, over £150, & I glanced at my receipt as the cashier was handing me the bags. I saw a cash-back of £40. I told her I didn't request a cash back & to delete it. She said I'd have to take the £40 because she couldn't delete it. I told Her to call a supervisor. Supervisor came & said I'd have to take it.. I said NO! Taking the £40 would be a cash advance against my Credit card & I wasn't paying interest on a cash advance!!!!! If they couldn't delete it then they would have to delete the whole order. So the supervisor had the cashier delete the whole order & re-scan everything! The second time I looked at the electronic pad before I signed & a cash-back of £20 popped up. At that point I told the cashier & she deleted it. The total came out right. The cashier agreed that the Electronic Pad must be defective. Obviously the cashier knew the electronic pad was defective because she NEVER offered me the £40 at the beginning. Can you imagine how many people went through before me & at the end of her shift how much money she pocketed? Just to alert everyone. My co worker went to the Supermarket last week. She had her items rung up by the cashier. The cashier hurried her along and didn't give her a receipt. She asked the cashier for a receipt and the cashier was annoyed and gave it to her. My co worker didn't look at her receipt until later that night. The receipt showed that she asked for £20 cash back. SHE DID NOT ASK FOR CASH BACK! My co-worker called the Supermarket who investigated but could not see the cashier pocket the money. She then called her niece who works for the bank and her niece told her this. This is a new scam going on. The cashier will key in that you asked for cash back and then hand it to her friend who is the next person in the queue. Please, please, please check your receipts right away when using credit or debit cards! This is NOT limited to any Supermarket. I am adding to this. My husband and I were in the Supermarket and paying with credit card when my husband went to sign the credit card signer he just happen to notice there was a £20 cash back added. He told the cashier that he did not ask nor want cash back and she said this machine has been messing up and she canceled it. We really didn't think anything of it until we read this email. I wonder how many "seniors" have been, or will be, "stung" by this one???? To make matters worse ...THIS SCAM CAN BE DONE ANYWHERE, AT ANY RETAIL OR WHOLESALE LOCATION!!! BEFORE LEAVING THE CHECK-OUT........CHECK YOUR RECEIPT!!!!! THIS COULD HAPPEN ANYWHERE. CHECK YOUR RECEIPT BEFORE LEAVING THE STAND. I'VE SEEN PEOPLE DO JUST THAT. NOW I'LL START!

PASS THIS ON TO YOUR FRIENDS, KIDS, LOVED ONES.

Saturday, 27 November 2010

Controlling dingos?

TRUE STORY.

The Australian Government and  the NSW Forestry Service were presenting an alternative to NSW sheep farmers for  controlling the dingo population.

It seems that after years of  the sheep farmers using the tried and true methods of shooting and/or trapping the  predators, the Labour Government (Peter Garrett - Environmental  Minister), the NSW Forestry Service and  the Greens tree-huggers had a 'more humane' solution.   

What they proposed was for the  animals to be captured alive, the males would then be castrated and let  loose again. Therefore the population would be controlled.      

This was ACTUALLY proposed to  the NSW Sheep  farmers Association and Farming Association by the Federal Labour Government  and the NSW Forestry Service.   

All of the sheep farmers  thought about this amazing idea for a couple of minutes.

Finally, one of  the old boys in the back of the conference room stood up, tipped his hat  back and said, 'Mr Garrett, son, I don't think you understand our problem.  Those dingo's ain't f**kin' our sheep - they're eatin'  'em.'   

You should have been there to  hear the roar of laughter as Mr Peter Garrett and the members of the NSW  Forestry Service , the Greens and the other "tree huggers" left the  meeting very "sheepishly".



Thursday, 25 November 2010

Invisible Disability

I will not write or procrastinate over this.
This is one of the best blogs I've seen in ages on this subject.

Have a look : http://networkedblogs.com/b0nbH

Nelson tied up in knots

History Versus Today...... (unknown contributor)




Nelson: "Order the signal, Hardy."

Hardy: "Aye, aye sir."

Nelson: "Hold on, this isn't what I dictated to Flags. What's the 
meaning of this?"

Hardy: "Sorry sir?"

Nelson (reading aloud): “England expects every person to do his or her 
duty, regardless of race, gender, sexual orientation, religious 
persuasion or disability.' - What gobbledygook is this for God's sake?"

Hardy: "Admiralty policy, I'm afraid, sir. We're an equal opportunities 
employer now. We had the devil's own job getting “England " past the 
censors, lest it be considered racist."

Nelson: "Gadzooks, Hardy. Hand me my pipe and tobacco."

Hardy: "Sorry sir. All naval vessels have now been designated 
smoke-free working environments."

Nelson: "In that case, break open the rum ration. Let us splice the 
main brace to steel the men before battle."

Hardy: "The rum ration has been abolished, Admiral. Its part of the 
Government's policy on binge drinking."

Nelson: "Good heavens, Hardy. I suppose we'd better get on with it full 
speed ahead."

Hardy: "I think you'll find that there's a 4 knot speed limit in this 
stretch of water."

Nelson: "Damn it man! We are on the eve of the greatest sea battle in 
history. We must advance with all dispatch. Report from the crow's 
nest, please."

Hardy: "That won't be possible, sir."

Nelson: "What?"

Hardy: "Health and Safety have closed the crow's nest, sir. No harness; 
and they said that rope ladders don't meet regulations. They won't let 
anyone up there until proper scaffolding can be erected."

Nelson: "Then get me the ship's carpenter without delay, Hardy."

Hardy: "He's busy knocking up a wheelchair access to the foredeck 
Admiral."

Nelson: "Wheelchair access? I've never heard anything so absurd."

Hardy: "Health and safety again, sir. We have to provide a barrier- 
free environment for the differently abled."

Nelson: "Differently abled? I've only one arm and one eye and I refuse 
even to hear mention of the word. I didn't rise to the rank of admiral 
by playing the disability card."

Hardy: "Actually, sir, you did. The Royal Navy is under- represented in 
the areas of visual impairment and limb deficiency."

Nelson: "Whatever next? Give me full sail. The salt spray beckons."

Hardy: "A couple of problems there too, sir. Health and safety won't 
let the crew up the rigging without hard hats. And they don't want 
anyone breathing in too much salt - haven't you seen the adverts?"

Nelson: "I've never heard such infamy. Break out the cannon and tell 
the men to stand by to engage the enemy."

Hardy: "The men are a bit worried about shooting at anyone, Admiral."

Nelson: "What? This is mutiny!"

Hardy: "It's not that, sir. It's just that they're afraid of being 
charged with murder if they actually kill anyone. There are a couple of 
legal-aid lawyers on board, watching everyone like hawks."

Nelson: "Then how are we to sink the Frenchies and the Spanish?"

Hardy: "Actually, sir, we're not."

Nelson: "We're not?"

Hardy: "No, sir. The French and the Spanish are our European partners 
now. According to the Common Fisheries Policy, we shouldn't even be in 
this stretch of water. We could get hit with a claim for compensation."

Nelson: "But you must hate a Frenchman as you hate the devil."

Hardy: "I wouldn't let the ship's diversity coordinator hear you saying 
that sir. You'll be up on disciplinary report."

Nelson: "You must consider every man an enemy, who speaks ill of your 
King."

Hardy: "Not any more, sir. We must be inclusive in this multicultural 
age.  Now put on your Kevlar vest; it's the rules. It could save your 
life"

Nelson: "Don't tell me - Health and Safety. Whatever happened to rum, 
sodomy and the lash?"

Hardy: As I explained, sir, rum is off the menu! And there's a ban on 
corporal punishment."

Nelson: "What about sodomy?"

Hardy: "I believe that is now legal, sir."

Nelson: "In that case................... kiss me, Hardy."


If you could only watch one TV show what would it be?

CSI

Ask me anything

What's the furthest you've ever traveled?

Singapore

Ask me anything

Wednesday, 24 November 2010

ATOS problems?

I hear a great deal of people are being told they can work without true consideration of medical conditions.


This could be your "action plan"


Is your Local Councillor aware? Have you got them involved yet?


I'd also get an MP involved, and possibly local (or even national) press as well ASAP


Have you done the GL24 form appeal? 


http://www.direct.gov.uk/en/diol1/doitonline/dg_4017514


Also use

http://www.clsdirect.org.uk/index.jsp Community Legal Advice


Also you have a MONTH to appeal. Else you cant. Start now.

What message would you want to put in a fortune cookie?

The message would be "Ask yourself: how the fuck did This message get inside a baked cookie"

Ask me anything

What one thing are you exceptionally bad at?

Rembering names if I've not seen someone for a fair while.

Ask me anything

How would you describe your style?

Eclectic

Ask me anything

If you could be on the cover of any magazine, which would you choose?

Is there a "people shit on me a lot" monthly?

Ask me anything

If your house was on fire and you could only grab three things, what would they be?

Dog, Phone(+charger) , and cigs

Ask me anything

Who's the funniest person you know?

D'oh thats unfair! I wont answer that one!

Ask me anything

Would you rather be a vampire or a werewolf?

Vampire

Ask me anything

What's the best place near you to get some ice cream?

Supermarket

Ask me anything

If you could have an endless supply of any food, what would you get?

Seafood

Ask me anything

Would you rather be really hot or really cold?

Really hot

Ask me anything

What's one food you'll never eat again?

Nasi Goereng - is that spelt correctly?

Ask me anything

Who's the most overrated musician?

Right now? He's not a musician, but it'd be WAGNER on Xfactor!

Ask me anything

formspring.me

Ask me anything http://formspring.me/JulesClarke

Tuesday, 23 November 2010

Its getting Cold- Extra Care needed...

I put stuff in a local newsletter I edit, and the theme is continuing in many places.
I've just seen the info I include here and its BASICALLY unchanged, but I've highlighted some really central stuff...
As temperatures in places around the Country are forecast to dip below freezing tonight and across the week,the Department of Health is warning for us to remember the needs of friends, elderly relatives and neighbours who could be at risk.
Official figures from the Office of National Statistics today demonstrate the deadly impact that cold weather can have, especially on older people during winter. They show that, last year, there were an estimated 25,400 excess deaths mostly linked to circulatory and respiratory diseases.
Following a few basic principles,they say,can make a big difference to the safety and wellbeing of those at risk.
  • Measures include checking on them to make sure they are safe and well,
  • making sure they’re warm enough, especially at night; 
  • and stocking up on food and medicines.

Information to help vulnerable people keep warm and keep well, will be made available to GP surgeries and local organisations.
The Department of Health has also made leaflets and posters giving advice on how to keep warm and well available for download for NHS and local organisations.

Virtual Gherkin says: So everyone, make sure people are OK!

Digital Government of The Poor?

Virtual Gherkin: Comment.
Government states Computerisation dreams:
Is there a need for this? There are huge tranches of non-IT people.
They forget that there simply isn't the money in the lower class ( that is NOW being made a sub class by the Spending Review proposals).
Although they state no one will be left out in this Digital Provision of Services, there will be an "unintended" forgotten tranche of society - and its LOTS of people.


Humbly I suggest Those with IT access WILL be treated differently and have quicker faster access to services. Those without probably will disappear, and WONT necessarily know what's available to them.
I'm talking of deprived areas - the National Office of Statistics KNOWS where they are. Mainly in social housing areas.
Anyway before I distort the impact of the Governments wonderfully crafted Smoke and Mirrors , I post below the latest from them. Make your own minds up.
BLINKERED. Thats all I can really say right now on this. They are BLINKERED.


THE CABINET OFFICE IN THEIR WISDOM STATES:
Public services should be delivered online or by other digital means, the Government has announced in response to a report published by Martha Lane Fox today. The report, and the Government’s initial response, argues for a Channel Shift that will increasingly see public services provided digitally ‘by default’
Martha Lane Fox, the UK Digital Champion, has published a report that calls for radical improvement to Government internet services [PDF 5.71MB, 11 pages] to provide higher quality and more convenient 24/7 services to users. In her report to the Minister of the Cabinet Office she argues that as well as delivering better services for citizens, shifting 30% of government service delivery contracts to digital channels has the potential to deliver gross annual savings of more than £1.3 billion, rising to £2.2 billion if 50% of contacts shifted to digital.
The recommendations in her report, which have been welcomed by Francis Maude, argue for the simplification and strengthening of digital government to improve the quality, and consequently use, of online channels. She proposes:
  • Making Directgov the ‘customer champion with teeth’ to drive up the quality of government's online services.
  • Simplifying the user experience of digital public services by making all of government’s transactional services available through Directgov.
  • Ensuring online government information and services are available wherever people are on the web by opening up applications and services to other organisations
  • Recruiting an Executive Director for Digital and Information in the Cabinet Office to drive change and bring together existing teams working in this area
  • Asking  Directgov and Business Link to create a plan of what would be involved to converge the sites into a single domain
Martha Lane Fox, UK Digital Champion, said:
“For years, businesses have been using digital communications to improve services and engagement with their consumers. Government should take advantage of the more open, agile and cheaper digital technologies to deliver simpler and more effective digital services to users, particularly to disadvantaged groups who are some of the heaviest users of government services.
“Through Race Online 2012, we now have more than 800 partners promising to help nearly 1.8 million new people enjoy the benefits of more convenient internet services by the end of the Olympic year.
“My report outlines specific measures to improve the amount and quality of transactional services the Government provides. But this is just the beginning: the Government must look at more dramatic measures – such as syndicating and opening up information and services to other organisations – to be able to offer genuine improvements to consumers, taxpayers, business and citizens in the UK.”
“We will use digital technology to drive better services and lower costs. At present we inherited contracts that effectively limit the number of people who can use some online services. And for most benefits it is simply not possible to apply online. This is inconvenient, expensive, wasteful and ridiculous and it can not continue.
“The shift towards online services also has the power to transform the relationship between Government and individuals. As Martha Lane Fox’s insightful report shows quality online services can be the default solution for people needing Government services. Not only are services more convenient and cheaper, but they can be better and more personalised.
“This does not mean we will abandon groups that are less likely to access the internet: we recognise that we cannot leave anyone behind. Every single Government service must be available to everyone – no matter if they are online or not.” 
______________________________________

The last 41 words are a CAVEAT.
As I say.....The Smoke and Mirrors are WONDERFULLY CRAFTED.

Monday, 22 November 2010

Public Service Announcement: UK NEW POSTAL SCAM --- eeeek

Please see below message regarding a current scam.


Trading Standards in the UK are making people aware of the following scam:

A card is posted through your door from a company called 
PDS (Parcel Delivery Service) suggesting that they were unable to deliver a parcel and that you need to contact them on 0906 6611911 (a Premium rate number).

DO NOT call this number, as this is a mail scam originating from Belize .

If you call the number and you start to hear a recorded message you will already have been billed £315 for the phone call.

If you do receive a card with these details, then please contact Royal Mail Fraud on 
020 7239 6655.

Speculation over Housing Tenancy Changes...

Being a Tenant of a Social Landlord, this is of significant interest on how the Landlords and Community structures will work upon proposals implementation.
I noticed ONE glaring Guardian statement that was made yesterday, that wasn't included in the governments statements. Read on...

The Guardian Said Yesterday:

Councils are to be given powers to evict or transfer new tenants after as little as two years if their financial circumstances improve, under plans to be unveiled tomorrow.
The proposals would also allow councils greater freedoms to give social housing to people with a strong local connection to the area where they live. In some cases councils are also likely to give preference to the poor in work, as opposed to the unemployed.
The plans are being billed as a way of putting immigrants to the back of waiting lists, although they will still be given a right to accommodation if homeless. Labour claims it had already introduced the local connection rule.
The chief reform, which will end lifetime security in council housing, is likely to be divisive within the coalition.
David Cameron had said in the summer he wanted to end life tenancies for council homes to make way for contracts of five or 10 years for new tenants.
But the period floated by Cameron is now going to be cut back to just two years, so tenants whose financial circumstances have improved could be evicted with six months notice to leave.
At present, people given council homes are awarded an indefinite "secure tenancy" after a 12-month trial.
The danger with the policy is that it will work as a disincentive for a tenant to find well-paid work, since they will lose tenancy.
But Grant Shapps, the housing minster, argues that council homes are an under-used asset, being taken up often by those not in need.
Shelter said tonight the two-year tenancy showed naivity about how quickly people can get back on their feet, and claimed it was the latest in a long line of housing reforms that are beginning to feel like deliberate attacks on council tenants.
The shakeup represents the biggest set of changes to council homes for 30 years, and apparently flies in the face of protests from Simon Hughes, the Liberal Democrat deputy leader.
He told a meeting of the Defend Council Housing at Westminster last month: "The last thing we want is more insecurity. You can't say it builds up community cohesion to threaten the last bit of security in tenants' lives. People and communities need that security."
But the reforms are strongly supported by the Lib Dem minister in the department of communities, Andrew Stunnell. He argues there are 5 million people on council house waiting lists, and current policies have not worked.
Shapps will also end the right of a council house tenant to 
hand the property over to a member of their family when they 
die.
According to figures obtained from the department of communities under the Freedom of Information Act, it is estimated that in 2007-08 there was a cumulative total of around 90,000 successor tenants still living in the accommodation after the death of the original tenant. Of these 90,000, 40,000 took over the tenancy after 1997.
Shapps also plans to give councils powers to reject applications from anyone also applying for a home from another council to stop multiple applications.
In other reforms, councils and housing associations will also be able to charge rent of up to 80% of the market rate so that they can raise money to buy new properties.
The changes that apply to England are planned to come into force next year, but would only have a gradual impact since they apply only to new tenancies.
____________________________________________
Which is all well and good if you believe that this wont harm 
communities. 
The official Press Release TODAY from Grant Schapps says 
the following:
___________________________
New council and social housing tenants in England will not necessarily keep their homes for life, housing minister Grant Shapps has said.
He said normal tenancy agreements would be for five, 10, 20 years or even a lifetime, but local organisations should have the freedom to see what worked in their areas.
He is expected to outline the details of his proposals to MPs.
Mr Shapps stressed that his proposals would not affect existing tenants. He told BBC Radio 4's Today programme: "We need to start to resolve some of the problems, build more homes and actually help people.
"What we are creating is a new form of tenancy and affordable rent which is going to be significantly more protected than the private rented sector. There's no reason why a home in future should always be the home for life. You don't get that in the private sector."
He went on: "The norm is very likely to be quite a significant-length tenancy, five, 10, 20 years or a lifetime." The most vulnerable will be protected under the reforms, he said.
Mr Shapps spoke of the need for reform of the system to help an estimated five million people on the waiting list for social housing.
"The need for reform is just overwhelming, there has been a sort of... a lazy consensus in this country which has led to fewer affordable homes being created," he told BBC Breakfast.
"A system where the waiting lists have just doubled over the last 13 years and people are just sitting back and saying 'well, let's have more of the same'. If we do, we will have waiting lists double again."
Prime Minister David Cameron has already said he wants an end to council tenancies for life and the introduction of fixed-term contracts of "five or 10 years".

A Deathly Musing...

I FOUND THIS.
I SHARE IT.




100 Words


A hundred words to talk of death?
At once too much and not enough.
My plans beyond that final breath
are currently a little rough.

The dying thing comes on so slow:
reluctance to get out of bed
is magnified each day and so 
transmuted into dead.

I dream of dying all alone,
nobody there to watch me pass
nothing remains for me to own,
no breath remains to fog the glass.

And when I do put down my pen
my memories will fly like birds.
When I am done, when I am dead,
and finished with my hundred words.


By Neil Gaiman  (Who has a website and stuff: http://neverwear.net/store/index.php?main_page=product_info&products_id=31 )


How very poignant is the above.
I thank you.
Jules