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Everything posted by Thibault

  1. An excellent programme.  I thought the parallels with Hitler, Stalin etc regarding the use of state terror very interesting.  Tracing the evolution of the Committee for Public Safety's thinking using various speeches shows how increasingly remote and cut off from reality they became and how easily they turned towards the idea of killing people who merely "looked" as if they did not support the government.  
  2. Well, I love it.  Thoughout the year there are lots of other wall-to-wall sporting events on TV - snooker, European Cup/World Cup football, European Various Cup football, Six Nations rugby, endless golf, horseracing, Forumula 1 stuff etc etc.   Don't get me started on b****y cricket on longwave..........   Wimbers is only on for two weeks then nothing is heard of tennis until the next year.    PS  Federer for the Cup [:D]
  3. Our house has two "names" and is referred to by one or other of them in all the relevant documents.  It is rather confusing, however, trying to remember which name refers to which organisation's records! 
  4. Mrs K always had a reputation for being shrewd as well as being a bit brighter than Mr K.
  5. It's ironic that UKIP are benefiting from people's anger regarding Westminster MPs expenses thingy, yet a couple of the UKIP MEPs have been caught milking the system for thousands of pounds. [8-)]
  6. Every so often this topic arrives on the forum.  The same people make the same points.  Perhaps it is like a swallow - turns up every spring.  [:)]
  7. Several pages back, Will made a comment about Norman Baker and how good he was at pointing out problems in the other two main parties. I would have more respect for Norman Baker if he had also made similar points about the Lib Dems (his own party) and the money they received from a convicted fraudster (something like a couple of million) who was not even entitled to donate to UK parties.  They have not repaid this money.  I know they said they received the money in "good faith" however, surely it is the principle here and they should repay it. I am afraid that Norman's "white knight" behaviour only applies to other parties, not his own.   I am worried about some MPs health - today, it was revealed that Eliot Morely forgot for 18 months that he had paid off his mortage and continued to claim £800 per month.  Two weeks ago, lightening struck him and he remembered this was a mistake and paid back the money.   Hmmmmm - would the sudden regaining of memory have anything to do with getting lists of expenses to redact them before they were released to the public?
  8. For one brief minute, I thought you wanted stuff about the Australian writer.............
  9. Yes, the government's actions with respect to the Gurkhas is a national disgrace.  I heard the minister on TV yesterday saying that if we had an "open" policy with regard to the Gurkhas, over 100,000 people would arrive in the UK.  What total nonsense.[:@]
  10. [quote user="sweet 17"] Food for thought indeed, Thibault and Coops 2. The only thing that might persuade me not to take it yet is because I don't really need it at the moment and, besides, it's not as though I was a banker and can look forward to £700,000 a year! [/quote]   Even if you don't need your state pension now, it may be worth taking it and putting it into some sort of savings account each month - then you will have it when you DO need it!
  11. I wouldn't defer taking a pension on the basis of  "a bird in the hand.....".  Besides, in the UK, if one defers one's state pension for, say, five years, which was proposed by the government a few years back, there is a tax liability on the lump sum one receives.  As all the runes point to huge hikes in taxes in the UK in the future to pay for the current government approach to dealing with the recession, it would seem sensible to take one's pension when it becomes due. This is, of course, a totally personal view.[:)]    
  12. Of course, we should not forget that MPs' generous pension arrangements are part of the public sector pension system.  An interesting side effect of replacing MPs' second home allowance with an increased salary (which has been mentioned a few times) is that their pension pots will increase as a result.    
  13. [quote user="Russethouse"]  You know Gluestick, I'm not going to bandy surveys and figures with you because stats can be used to prove virtually anything, but I know of women who have been in the positions I mention, both had basic English language skills only [/quote]   There is considerable evidence to support the view that it is the husbands of these women who prevent them learning English - when there was a lot of government money available to teach English to immigrant families, it was almost impossible to get these ladies to the classes because of resistence by their husbands.  It seemed to be related to the view that if they could not participate in wider activities due to not speaking English, they would not be influenced by a "corrupt" Western culture.
  14. It is interesting that the people who sold them the house (".....who had to return to the UK quickly....") didn't mention it!  In the UK now, you have to disclose any issues you may have with neighbours as part of the process of selling a house.  I guess there is nothing similar in France.
  15. An excellent article Clair.  I hope it answers your question Quillan.
  16. Perhaps he's being paid as an advisor because he knows where all the bodies are?[:D]
  17. [quote user="Weedon"] I wouldn't be at all surprised to learn that most of them still hadn't found out how to erect their flat-pack chairs and beds by the time the doors were opened for them this morning.  Tomorrow they will all be back for the bits missing from the things they have bought today.  No...I have never bought anything from Ikea, I just retain lots of useless observations. [/quote]  My Bold   We have bought several things from Ikea both in France and UK.  We have never had the problem of missing or broken bits.  The other plus point about Ikea stuff is the assembly booklet - entirely in pictures so very easy to follow. 
  18. Getting back to te OP's original point - some of the socio-cultural interpretations of Islamic principles are a cause of concern with regard to their effect on the treatment of women.  What happened to women and girls in Afghanistan when the Taliban were the government was terrible - even widows prevented from going to work and no help with food aid, etc - and all qualified women doctors, lawyers etc prevented from working.  No education for any females. Even in UK we have "honour" killings.  This stems from the belief that the "honour" of a tribe/clan/family resides in its women.  This allows such terrible things as that case in (was it Pakistan?) a few years ago when a young woman was ganged raped to "punish" HER BROTHER, who had made unacceptable "approaches" to another girl. Even the question of the burka is down to culture, not the teachings of the Koran, which merely states that women should be dressed "modestly". We should all be concerned that some elements in the muslim population, who have migrated to parts of the "Western" world, want to impose these socio-cultural beliefs on our society.  We should also be concerned at the "Talibanisation" of attitudes towards women in countries such as Iraq etc.
  19. [quote user="woolybanana"]well, that b uggered the middle classes then.[/quote]   So Wooly...you assume that only middle class people work (or worked in the ones which have now been converted into defined whatsits)   in jobs with final salary pension schemes?  Somewhat out of touch, I think......[:)]
  20. The death knell for final salary pension schemes was sounded when Gordon Brown changed the rules and took (and the govt continues to take) £5bn out by abandoning some sort of tax relief (I forget exactly what it was called) in 1997.    
  21. [quote user="sweet 17"] Clair, that is also how I have understood it. BTW, anyone remember Prince Charles getting his OWN NAME wrong when he was saying his wedding vows to Diana? No wonder that marriage didn't go anywhere! [/quote]   It was actually Diana who got the order of his names wrong
  22. I am curious as to why Obama is seen as a representatives of "African Americans" in the generally accepted meaning of the term (ie descendant of African slaves) - as I understand it, his father was a Kenyan, not an African American.  Obama was raised by his mother and her family in Hawaii - not a typical "African American" upbringing. I wonder if many people supported and voted for him because of his colour and the fact that he was a "change", rather than for his policies. I think it would be a terrible shame if everything he says and does is viewed through the filter of his skin colour.  Like an earlier poster, I feel it is more important to see what people do, regardless of their colour, race, ethnic identify, religion etc.  [:)]
  23. We also found it impossible to buy them in France.  However they can be bought from Robert Dyas - they are called Dragon Brand.
  24. We purchased the IGN map of our local area, only to find that the "walkers' routes" were all along roads and not across land.  On enquiring at the local tourist office about footpaths etc, we were told that negotiations were still going on with local landowners and that currently there were no designated footpaths on any local land!  We also purchased the departmental book  - "On Foot in......." and found 99% of these walks were along roads.  The only differences were the GR routes.
  25. A French keyboard is no help if you are a touch typist!  [:@]
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