10 August 2011

Claudia's cartoon


The rioting hasn't quite got to us yet, though Biz did have to pay £600 to board the shop up today. They're on their way here apparently.
It's pretty bloody strange to be honest. I was properly freaked out yesterday, Biz was away, and a girl from another shop told me to close up straight away (was nearly 6pm) and GET OUT cos the looters were coming. One of my customers said "What, to Muswell Hill?"...her little boy said, "mummy, can we move?"...  Only the Carphone Warehouse and a couple of optitians got it last night, but today there's cops everywhere and everyone has their shutters down or is boarded up. Yep, Muswell Hill.
The boarding was just going up as we left, got a day off tomorrow to make up for working Monday (Biz was at the Edinborough Festi) but I may get called in (after a sleep in, only fair). So, short answer, no. It's CRAZY. I mean CRAZY. And it's round the UK now. We're listening to an Asian station now Sangat sky 847, quite different. Hearing sirens all the time. Just too too peculiar.
Tommy's area is proper under siege, now the locals are standing fast to hold off the looters. Also, Sikh men, out in force protecting their temple and neighbourhood. Also, last night, the Turks, and Kurds stood outside their shops with baseball bats and chased them off. Interesting...uh? Wow. It's been widely reported that the Muslim etc (ugh, what, brown people?) have stood with the cops. Oh, it's all going OFF! The world is changing? 2012? Maybe? BLOODY HELL!!!!!! Wish us luck.

Stephen O'R's take on Finance

‘Heavy selling wipes over 5 0  B I L L I O N off  the markets bottom.’
Heavy selling - what's driving this attack of pecuniary sh- ts.
 'You just want to get to your desk and talk to your clients.' not to mention the need to use some of that worthless paper to refresh this week's  anus horriblus.
Fell fall dive collapse crash - 'tumbled over five hundred points' a financial turmoil. Slash wipe slash wipe. Money comes alive to entertain us with its turmoil. Families sell children mortgage the plasma and get priorities right.
Money is going back to its home base - back to the fundamentals. Paper will be returned to its natural star forests will be reborn slaves will rebury silver and gold into mines all around the world.
The market is being driven by sentiment. Australian dollar has been hit and is experiencing heavy falls in this market. The carrot and mushroom stalls are apparently unaffected by these falls.
Reserve Bank slashes expectations as it prepares for double dip chocolate ice-cream.
Economy now expected to grow at just over 3% down from 4 %. Wow that sounds  bad!
Reserve bank worried things might get worse as there is no money left in Government kitties. Hundreds of national purses will be held giggly closed as mass funerals are planned. Serbians are expected to be hired for mass burials of mortgages
Morgan Stanley is going for a double dip recession and a bear market. His sister says that she will just eat lobster.
Very different to normal. Global markets are expecting recession. Normally Global markets expect boom times for all.
Current turmoil will need to be considered.  Government-funded courses will be offered in Wall Street, Door street, Floor St. And other important locations. French will be taught!
So why now. Why just before the world cup. Is this yet another resample of dog in the mannerism against New Zealanders who have already had to wear being called Chinese Gooseberries.
Well we had the US debt-ceiling drama that created the environment and Iraq has shown us what to expect from US creative writing classes.
The Murdoch created Tea party and Tony Abbot, the Australian opposition leader have talked everything down and now that we finally believe their lies the market has panicked and set out to prove them right by wiping the markets a-SE.
But folks it's us that caused it. We created a housing bubble we bought the big boats and champagne. We in a burst of patriotism flocked to the malls with brains switched off in heroic kamikaze-ism to make that nearly one point of growth.
Can we get over this? Yes but slowly like A Wellington crowd who have just watched the All Black be beaten by the Australians.
Now we can expect fiscal austerity if we don't want to fall off the cliff. Grey will be the new black, Moet will be sold in 4litre plastic bags inside recycled cardboard boxes.
We will see a lot of action.  US has more debt than it had at the end of the great depression. This time they will share it around with their mates China and Japan as the lucky bondholders.
Over the past few months I saw and heard many images of chaos from Greece but two Greek friends who have just returned from 6 weeks in GREECE saw nothing of this drama. Attempts to introduce cost-effective plumbing were greeted with shrugs of the shoulder.
But here we are talking up another end of the world drama economic disaster. Next year Leonardo di Caprio will shine as that hero of adventure capitalism Gatsby.
How can we avoid stagflation or deflation when it is clear we are in a debt deflation where what needs to happen is the institutions who issued the debt ie the banks, must go bankrupt. By writing page after page of alarmism that nobody can understand.
Bailing out the banks like they were lifeboats is not the way and instead we must drill holes in the banks so they sink quicker. Let all the debt be cleared and those people who created debt be responsible for it.
What a load of tripe we are subjected to by the media desperate to create drama at whatever cost to truth or rational thinking.
What a lot of guff! Going cheap this week.
As a small level stock market gambler I know that crashes create buying opportunities to profit from but for most people this tirade of invective that is unleashed at times such as this is just more trash journalism to be  ignored - and rightly so.
Sent from my iPad
One of my favourite photos. Hope Roger finds his dream tractor soon. ed

Stephen O'R post-Ghee

The first two weeks was the same treatment as last time – Dara (oil massage which loosens up all the muscles) Takes an hour. I had it for 14 days. Kati-Vasti warm oil inside a ring of dough placed on small of back finds its way deep into the tissues by travelling down the space around the hair follicles. Plus small daily enemas, 50ml of medicated oil to soften up the insides. Vasti – the big enema where you get the full oil and grease that clears out accumulated waste hanging about offering free board to any little parasites.
Were they aware of the intensity of the pain that you suffer from?
Pain was not intense at this time due to a relaxed layabout lifestyle and drugs. I was able to get off 2 of the nerve pain tablets that make me hold onto weight while increasing my appetite. During the whole of my stay I had no desire to eat which led to losing 15 kilos. I was during the floaty stage that follows the Vasti (the big enema) when the Ghee treatment was suggested. My first reaction was “I don’t think that sounds like fun.” Then I thought, “well this is why I am here and I should just go along with the programme.”
Have they treated anyone else with arachnoiditis?
Only me. But most doctors don’t know anything about arachnoiditis and avoid the issus by going along with the ‘incurable tag’.
How are you feeling now?
Sick and sore
Did you not realise you would have to forgo your painkillers while on their ancient purging?
I took painkillers whenever I wanted but what I felt was more like carsickness or nausea and painkillers have no effect on such things.
So today I will go to GP and get all the bloods done. Still off the ‘bad’ nerve pain pills and still lost 12 kilos although I am now eating normally.
In summary, I gave them a lot of detailed research into arachnoiditis. They took me on as a serious challenge. About 1% of patients do the Ghee treatment. A number of people stop the treatment.
If they did anything wrong, it was ot preparing me mentally for what started to happen – then I stopped trusting them as each day got worse. Then I realised I had to complete a certain amount of the post-ghee stuff to bring my body back to ‘normal’  to cope with the trip home..
I bought 2 rubber feet in Singapore which have all the reflexology massage points on them and have been giving myself feet treatment.
I have discovered a sickness called ‘Parrahithyroid’ which is what happens with one or more of the 4 rice grain glands that control calcium levels in the body. I will have a calcium level test down with the bloods Certainly the symtoms sound like it is for me.
I feel sick and sore at the moment but I am confident things will right themselves. Pain is minor and obviously not the issue at the moment.
I met two great people at Poomully, sweet and funny. She teaches French Literature and he is a retired doctor
I too am grieving Amy Winehouse. What a weird and wonderful creature. So fragile and so strong at the same time. I became a fan when we were in London in 2008 but I don’t know anyone else who is a fan, except Fred. Like with John Lennon, I miss the possibility of what she might have done had she made it through the difficult period.
‘They said I should go to Ayurvedic but oh no no. They said I should stop the painkillers but oh no no.’
At least her tattoist will get a lot of work.
Stephen O’R


Please see text of an interview I conducted with Renato Bologna - clarifying how his bee colonies died - and how they finally confirmed that it was Thiomethoxam that was responsible.
The interview gives a good insight into how they lost their hives, their business, their home and their livelihood.
I also attach a summary of the lab results from the page on their website.
Website main page is here:  http://www.rfb.it/bastaveleni/chisiamo.htm
Laboratory analysis page is here: http://www.rfb.it/bastaveleni/le_nostre_analisi.htm
Video of bees affected by Thiomethoxam poisoning is here: http://www.rfb.it/bastaveleni/video_ape_intosicata_da_thiamethoxam.htm
Please read the attached interview and distribute as you think appropriate.
Graham White
Hi Renato and Marisa, I hope you are feeling OK – living on hunger-strike for 28 days cannot be an easy thing to do.
Thanks for your concern – well we are not entirely starving – we allow ourselves three large spoons of honey and pollen each day, and we drink water and fruit juice.  I think we will be OK.
Q. What year did you start your business?
I became a full-time, professional bee-farmer in 1988 but my father was my first beekeeping teacher for many years before that
Q. Was your business  a success?
Well, I have only this one job, and I knew I would never become rich through bees, but for almost 20 years, it was enough to live on.
Q. When did you start to notice colonies dying?
We first suffered large scale losses in 2004-2005
Q. When did you submit bees, larvae, honey and bee-bread for laboratory
We started to pay for lab analysis last year – 2010 , you can see all the details including the lab results at our website page
Q. Which laboratories carried out the tests? Did you have to pay money
for this service?
We used two laboratories: the Public Laboratory, with the support of the state veterinary system, which is funded by us taxpayers.
We also paid for additional private laboratory analyses. We have paid for many other, *private* analyses of bees, to try and find out WHY the bees are dying. If you analyse dead bees, some days old, it is IMPOSSIBLE to identify or confirm, chronic or sub-lethal contamination by neonics.  Sometimes this is even true for acute/ lethal contamination – where you watch the bee die in front of you and immediately analyse it!).
Marisa had the idea to take living bees, which were behaving as if they were contaminated, and rush them to the laboratory. The scientists put the dying bees in the freezer immediately and as soon as they were dead, the analysis was carried out. We had to pay more than 1000€ each time we did this ($1400).
Did both labs find thiomethoxam  IN the living bees?
YES. The method is: take some samples of bees from a hive that have
symptoms of pesticide poisoning, as shown in the VIDEO on our page
and shake them into a container. If there is pesticide intoxication, many bees just stay in
the bottom of container, they walk slowly, but without obvious evidence of
poisoning, they behave as if they are ‘subdued’. We have used these bees, and repeated
the lab analysis many times; ever time the resuls came back : ‘thiamethoxam’.
Did both labs identify thiomethoxam in bee larvae?
Did both labs identify thiomethoxam in 'bee bread' (pandapi)?
Why did they NOT find thiomethoxam in honey or pollen?
We could not afford to have these tests done we just ran out of funds..   :o))
Did they find OTHER neonicotinoids?  Clothianidin?
NO they only detected thiamethoxam. The actual insecticide is Actara, made by Syngenta
WHY do you think they could not find thiomethoxam in the DEAD bees?
The molecule degrades very quickly after the bee dies, and is very difficult to detect; at present the labs do not have a sensitive enough test, I think, or the methodology is not yet developed. Have you read the Austrian document? They have found new methods for testing recently ...
Why do the grape-growers use thiomethoxam on their vines?
They spray thiomethoxam for the problem of ‘flavessence doree’ , a leaf-yellowing disease that is transmitted by an insect - a Leaf-Hopper named Scaphoideus Titanus.  Because of this infectious disease Italian vineyards are legally required to spray with 3-4 different insecticides each summer and one of them is thiamethoxam. BUT neonicotinoid insecticides are used very common here in Italy. For instance neonics are used on potatoes, against "colorado beetle" and many other vegetables and fruit, just about everything.
Q. Is thiomethoxam sprayed ONTO the grapes?
It is sprayed onto the vines after they flower. But it is also systemic; it is absorbed into the plant through the leaves and remains active in the sap for a very long time; Syngenta guarantees that thiomethoxam will sustain its MAXIMUM –kill-effect for 45 days; it continues to kill at reduced effectiveness long after that – but 45 days is the max effect.
Q. How do bees come into contact with it?  Do they feed on grape blossoms?
No, the bees absorb thiomethoxam from water, in or near the vineyard. When the farmers spray the vines, the spraying machine generates massive clouds of insecticide vapour, which drift over hundreds of acres, depositing the insecticide on the soil, plants, grass and wildflowers both inside and outside the vineyard.  The landscape is saturated with thiomethoxam, and it is absorbed not only into the vines, but into trees, plants and wildflowers too.  The wildflowers in turn become poisonous to bees.
 Italy has a very hot climate, like California in summer, and there is very little free surface-water available for them to drink.   When the bees wake up thirsty, first thing in the morning, they seek the nearest "natural" water and they find the droplets of "mielata" or honeydew, that exudes from the leaves of the grapes all summer. Scientists call these ‘guttation droplets’ and, since they are expressed from the actual sap inside the vine leaves – they are sweet – they contain sugars, which makes them very attractive to bees. Sadly, they also contain deadly neonicotinoids like thiomethoxam.  And it is true what Henk Tennekes writes in his book (The Systemic Insecticides), with each passing year, more and more neonics  accumulate in the soil and water – the half-life can be many years!
NOTE:Flavescence dorée
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopediahttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flavescence_dor%C3%A9e Flavescence dorée is a bacterial disease of the vine with the potential to threaten vineyards. The bacterial agent has recently been named Candidatus Phytoplasma vitis, and its vector is the leafhopper, Scaphoideus titanus. Infection may kill young vines and greatly reduce the productivity of old vines.[1] It is classified as a phytoplasma disease belonging to the group generically termed grapevine yellows.[2] Occurrences are in sporadic epidemics, and grape varieties vary in their sensitivity to it.
Flavescence dorée first appeared in 1949 in the Armagnac region of south west France.[2] Its insect vector, S. titanus, was originally native to the Eastern United States and Canada and is believed to have been introduced to Europe during World War II. Spreading steadily throughout France, by 1987 it had reached the wine growing regions of Cognac, Languedoc and northern and southern Rhône, and by 1992 the Loire Valley, and Bordeaux.[1] Variants of the disease are found in Switzerland, Germany, New York state, and Australia.

BBC, Radio 4 Extra

Hello again,
Was it really only last April when Radio 7 was rebranded as Radio 4 Extra?
Four months on, it was with bated breath that I opened the e-mail yesterday informing me of the latest RAJAR audience figures (Radio Joint Audience Research Ltd) covering the second quarter of 2011.
With finger poised over my keyboard I could only wonder whether all of the team's hardwork had paid off for the station's first figures under our new name and a carefully revamped schedule.
All was soon revealed. Firstly, the RAJAR statistics showed that radio listening for last quarter was at record levels, with 47.2 million people tuning into their favourite radio stations every week.
On reading further, I was delighted to discover that the nation's most popular digital-only radio network is now - BBC Radio 4 Extra.
With the re-branding of the station and the ensuing profile, cross-trails and press coverage, I was of course hoping for an increase in listening figures, but certainly not as much as 50%.
Our listenership from April to July has surged to an impressive 1.6l million.
I had a fleeting thought that perhaps we had sneaked hundreds of listeners away permanently from our sister station Radio 4, resulting in a drop in that illustrious station's figures.
But no, acording to the RAJAR data, Radio 4 is more popular than ever, reaching a record-breaking number of 10.85 million listeners a week.
I am proud of both stations, of my colleagues who continue to maintain the standards of entertainment Radio 4 Extra offers - and my thanks to all former Radio 7 listeners who have stayed with us, alongside the new listeners the network has won over.
Good listening for our 1.61million listeners.
Mary Kalemkerian. Head of Progrmmes, BBC Radio4 Extra

This was a work-horse in the 2nd WW, carrying troops. It now sits in a field near Villebois Lavalette.