Friday, November 28, 2008

Psychoanalyse This

I found a psychoanalysing tool for blogs (via Coffee Shop Philosophy). The analysis gives a Myers-Briggs personality type.

It seems this blog is an ISTP - The Mechanics.
The independent and problem-solving type. They are especially attuned to the demands of the moment are masters of responding to challenges that arise spontaneously. They generally prefer to think things out for themselves and often avoid inter-personal conflicts.

The Mechanics enjoy working together with other independent and highly skilled people and often like seek fun and action both in their work and personal life. They enjoy adventure and risk such as in driving race cars or working as policemen and firefighters.
Now I know it's all about the writing and not the author (rumours of the death of the author are greatly exaggerated) but most of the description also applies to the author. Most but not all. The final sentence, "They enjoy adventure and risk such as in driving race cars or working as policemen and firefighters" is a no, no, no when it comes to the life of the author.

ISTPs are sometimes described as Crafter Artisans,
"introverts, [but] authoritarian in their interactions with others and .. forceful at influencing people. They focus on accomplishing tasks efficiently and skillfully.

To master the tool of their interest, ISTPs require a certain degree of seclusion in which to practice. The result is often a virtuosity that other types find difficult to match."
It seems that DSTPFW is also ISTP.

And it seems that Rullsenberg is ESTP - The Doers, also described as Promoter Artisans. ESTPs are "hands-on learners who live in the moment, seeking the best in life, wanting to share it with their friends." Strikes me as like Rullsenberg.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Billy Bragg at Rock City

Wednesday night I rushed with Rullsenberg to town to get tickets to see Billy Bragg.

He plays his guitar. He points out some pissed trouble makers. He carries on playing his guitar and singing in that Billy Bragg way. I am the milkman of human kindness. I will leave an extra pint. Chorus sung by the audience. [Corrected]

As Swiss Toni recounts
He chastised people who want to "throw piss" over the hope generated by Obama's election in the USA and suggested that although he is going to disappoint us over some things, at the moment he represents possibility above everything else and we should embrace that. The last time he played Rock City, he told us, was the night before the General Election in 1997, when the Labour party finally swept the hated Tory regime aside. No matter how much we felt that the Labour Government had let us down (I doubt all that many tories attend Bragg gigs), we had to gear ourselves up for another election next year because a Labour government still represents possibilities that we would not have if the Conservatives get back into power.
Half way through the show his voice started to go (you at the back, I heard you say, how could anyone tell) so he drank a mug of Throat Coat tea, "guaranteed to get you singing in tune", or so he said.

The encore was A New England with the audience singing the chorus - "I'm not looking for a new England, I'm just looking for another girl".

Politics. Tunes. Singalong. Is there any more you want from a night out in Nottingham?

Brendan Barber and Golden Balls

Meeting the Treasury Select Committee the other day Brendan Barber, head of the TUC, criticised the pay, and bonues, of bankers. Fine. A good thing.

Then Barber put his feet firmly in his mouth by speaking up for multi-million salaries paid to premier league football players:
"the remuneration paid to David Beckham is part of a system which does not apply to the rest of the human race"
No. Footballers' pay should be no different to the pay of everyone else. No special cases. Sure some people are better at their job than other people but that does not warrant a vast differential in salaries.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Leaked List of Johnsonian Scoundrels

There's a leaked list of Johnsonian scoundrels floating about, or, to be blunter, there's a list of names and addresses of fascist BNP members floating about.

It's likely to be taken down soon but as of 10pm on Tuesday 18th November 2008 it's available at

Most of the entries are just name, address, phone number, and possibly email address. But then there are those that describe hobbies and interests, and sometimes those interests are a tad bizarre.

Here's an, anonymised, example of hobbies and interests:
Tour guide ([XXXX] Cathedral). Writer for local paper (church/village history). Runs a Christian singing group. Vegan/supporter of organic produce. Members of the Woodland Trust, National Trust, VIVAI, Anglican Society, Open Doors, British Israel World Federation.
oh, and being an activist in the fascist B*N*P.
Being curiouser than Alice, I looked up the British Israel World Federation. I thought it was a Victorian relic of Empire that had long since passed the way of the Primrose League and the Economic League. How wrong could I be. It even has a website.

Apparently they believe that some (go on and guess what sort of people they believe this applies to) people in Britain are descendents of the lost tribe of Israel and the country is thereby blessed by the spaghetti monster (or G_d or sky bully or non-existent entity).

I bet this fascist read the Da Vinci Code.

Friday, November 14, 2008

East meets West

Terminology collides with geography.

This annoys the ever brilliant xkcd as well.

Sunday, November 09, 2008


Talking. It's what makes the world go round. Here's the brilliant Studs Terkel in conversation.

[ Via Linda Grant. ]

Sound of Colour

Simon Hoggart makes the outrageous, racist and daft point that "[Obama] does not even sound black".

How does "black" sound? How does "white" sound? Is this just Hoggart saying that Obama does not sound how Hoggart imagines "black" people speak? Or is there something else to this?

Does Hoggart think all "black" people sound the same? Does Hoggart think all "white" people sound the same? Does Hoggart think there's a range of voices that are "black" and a range of voices that are "white"?

Individual people have a voice. That voice is a product of geography, society and education. Even if you could make statements about a group having a common accent, or dialect, is it fair to argue that someone without that accent is outwith the group? I think it's only fair if the sole definition of the group is that it is made up of people who all talk the same way.

Hoggart's statement is muddled and nonsensical and capable of racist interpretation.