Free supermarket carrier bags in England about to be banned

04/06/2014

Bloody Daily Mail! They’re responsible!  Checkout their headline:

At last! Plastic bags are banished: Victory for Mail’s six-year campaign as Ministers force reluctant supermarkets to impose 5p charge

I understand the thinking: if carrier bags cot 10p, a number of customers will reuse old bags, cutting down on littering, perfectly fine bags being chucked in the bin ending up in landfill where it takes a billion years for the bags to decompose etc.  And it’s certainly an idea.  But a good idea? I HATE HATE!!! says Nooo!!!

I collect free carrier bags cos I have a dog and use bags to pick up her turds whn she craps.  From personal observation, I have seen the amount of dog shit being left on open ground.  True, some bags of shit get thrown up into trees, which must be a pita for the street cleaning folk etc.  But the cleaning people get paid for their work.  So, is this all part of a process to justify sacking cleaners?  If you read this blog often, you may have noticed my opinion on all the laws that get passed without good reas on.

I’m  not a user of e-cigs – I’ve tried them and I don’t like the taste.  But when I’m out and about in a large no-smoking area, the e-cig comes into its own: it has the “ritual” of smoking (holding the -e-cig, having a vape when the user feels like it) with no discernible health threat to owners.  And there’s also some evidence that e-cigs work helping smokers to quit where patches, chewing gum etc are useless.  Hard-core tobacco fiends have been able to cut down/quit the evil weed.

But no.  France, and now England have plans to ban the use of e-cigs in “public places”.  Their argument is two-fold: no-one knows the “long-term” side-effects of e-cigs, and their use somehow “normalise” smoking.  Complete bollocks of course.  Smoking is already normalised.  There are lots of cigarette smokers out there, who might be saved by e-cigs.  The harmful effects of smoking are all connected with the various tars and other substances in tobacco – not e-cigs.  The e-cigs deliver nicotine, which has no discernible effect on the “passive smoking” crowd (along with the pictures of the horrible internal organs used to decorate cigarette packs).  Smoking is here,get used to it.  And if they successfully help smokers too quit, all the better.  Nicotine addiction is hard to fight, anything available to help smokers to quit should be celebrated, not frowned on.

The JD Witherspoon chain of pubs has said e-cigs have been banned because “bar staff had found it difficult to distinguish e-cigarette users from real smokers”.  Of course, when a pub staff member is close-by, the appearance of the e-cigs, they fact they don’t produce any smoke or smell… FFS do Wetherspoon employ idiots?  Or is it just a poxy excuse?

I emailed the manager of my local Sainsburys, asking why the supermarket has decided to ban the use of e-cigs: all I got back was a pre-planned response that it hadn’t yet been proved that e-cigs are harmless and some kind of “gateway” product that will cause people  to “graduate” to tobacco, then probably crack and smack…

I said before that I can see a future where cigarette smoking has died off, with e-cig use being the norm amongst nicotine addicts.  But the puritanical state don’t like that.  If something is enjoyable, governments want to ban it before it becomes too popular. Hence the strict laws concerning o-called “legal highs”, hence bans on cannabis and, soon, e-cigs.  The bastards want us to do without of comforts, while they use e-cigs  and tobacco and who knows whatever other products that make one feel nice. We are the subjects of a puritanical-for-the-masses government. Insane.  So, how can we, the millions of Brits and billions around the world who smoke, challenge this?  Simply put: we can’t.  No party I’m aware of wants to abolish the nicotine laws.  So what we gonna do, mass civil disobedience?  Crowds of millions marching through London chanting: What do we want? Cigarettes! When do we want them?   Now!!

 


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The government’s stance is based on hygiene and on saving on all the emissions that come from manufacturing carrier bags.  I can buy expensive scented nappy (diaper) disposal bage, I can use paper from junk mail to somehow magic the smelly shit away…I dunno, maybe the Revolution will happen soon. Other dog  owners will let their mutts shit wherever (outside).  The government want me to use my magic powers to reverse this trend.  Bloody ridiculous.  I’m absolutely livid; I want to have a country of my own where I can smoke e-cigs and even real tobacco!   FFS!!!
I’m not too bad at writing. But there are obviously other things required that I don’t know crap about. Let’s crowd-source some cash (I don’t know shit about that either). We can buy or rent an island, live there (“This entire island is a designated smokingF zone. If you don’t like it, stop breathing. Or reveal yourself. The majority of people don’t smoke, but the smoking minority is a pretty big minority. Smoking is hard and cool, and you can’t get better than it!

BTW: interesting reading based on the pro-ban argument. The Daily Mail: France to ban e-cigarettes from public places and subject them to same controls as tobacco.
And:
E-cigarettes ‘help smokers to quit’
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Comics are just kids’stuff, right?

19/04/2011

Wow, I’m tired. But I’m really wired too. You know, how you feel when you’ve been up for three days on a speed binge and have ground your teeth down to stumps (not that I know how it feels to be up for three days on a speed binge, I feel a bit too old for such antics nowadays).

No, my drug of choice has been comics. Back in the mid-to-late nineties I was well keen on comics, and I’ve been reliving that enthusiasm by reading comics on my computer. I don’t mean internet comics like Beaver and Steve – I’m talking about the real thing, like what I used to go to the comics store to buy, only now they’ve been digitized and are available for download in .cbr format files. You can read .cbr files in any .pdf reader, but my chosen weapon is Comix, whose creators describe it as

a user-friendly, customizable image viewer. It is specifically designed to handle comic books, but also serves as a generic viewer. It reads images in ZIP, RAR or tar archives (also gzip or bzip2 compressed) as well as plain image files. It is written in Python and uses GTK+ through the PyGTK bindings.

If you use Ubuntu, it’s in the repositories. I’m sure you can find it for other OSes too; just go looky at that link (here it is again, if you missed it).

I used to read Transmetropolitan by Warren Ellis and Darick Robertson (and Rodney Ramos on inks) but sadly stopped buying comics before the title’s 5 year run was over. So, I downloaded the entire run of the comic and have been reading it straight through.

I’m also a big fan of Hellblazer, on which that Keanu Reeves movie Constantine was based (incidentally, that film did not do the comic any justice at all). So, I downloaded a huge bunch of Hellblazer .cbr files and binged on them too. I also downloaded V For Vendetta, the Watchmen mini-series (on which the film of the same name was based), and I’ve started a new (to me) title, the first volume of The Invisibles by Grant Morrison and Steve Yeowell.

So, where did I find this veritable trove of comic book treasures? All I’ll say is Filestube.com. Brilliant site. Check it out.

Now, how many more issues of The Invisibles can I read before I lapse into a coma and die?

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