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Everything posted by Thibault

  1. Do French media people say 'Dover' or 'Douvres' when referring to that place in French broadcasts?
  2. I have noted recently that my local paper has one health scare story per day. These range from drinking, diet, exercise, old age, mental state, whether or not a person has suffered from something or other earlier in life etc.

    Much of this stuff is based on tiny research activities at universities one has barely heard of and, of course, most of them contradict each other.

    Therefore, I have resolved to read them, have a laugh and then promptly forget all about them.
  3. Native speakers who work on the BBC and other channels cannot be bothered to speak grammatical English - they now can't distinguish between countable and uncountable nouns, for example. Perhaps it is all part of identifying with their audience, most of whom are ungrammatical as well.
  4. [quote user="EuroTrash"]But the very fact that the option is there, puts the pressure on. You have a decision to make, it's heart versus head, head often wins - go earn money, go spend money, put the old folks off until next week or next month.


    It's a simple decision - either you do not want to go shopping on Sunday, or you do. Are you saying that you are so weak willed that if the shops opened on Sunday, you would be unable to resist the temptation to go shopping?

    That's a sorry case.......
  5. People who are opposed to Sunday opening always act as though it was compulsory. I do not go shopping on a Sunday, but that is my choice and those who wish to do so, can, in the UK. Those who don't wish to, don't.

  6. [quote user="Pickles"][quote user="Thibault"]By the way, how do you do those neat little quote bits? If I try to quote from the previous message, it all comes out all mixed up with machine code. If I cut and paste, I don't get the nice little shaded box.[/quote]

    I think it comes down to which browser you use. I'm using Firefox (OK, to be pedantic, it's IceWeasel, but it is effectively Firefox) on a Linux operating system and it seems to be compatible with the site software. If you can find the options on your browser for running in "compatibility mode", then you may get nice quote boxes instead of gobbledygook. 


    I'll give it a try!
  7. I suspect no matter how fulsome the apology, the feeding frenzy around this incident would not have been contained - there were too many 'interested' parties involved.

    By the way, how do you do those neat little quote bits? If I try to quote from the previous message, it all comes out all mixed up with machine code. If I cut and paste, I don't get the nice little shaded box.
  8. Pichles wrote:

    I can't accept that we should not condemn appalling behaviour and lapses of judgement by our elected politicians. He may have been having a bad day and did something stupid. Fine. I can accept that that can happen to anybody. What happened next was entirely within his control and he completely fouled it up. If we have sunk so low that we can't criticise stupid childish behaviour by one of our elected politicians, then there really is no hope. Are our expectations of our politicians so low that we should consider this behaviour "normal" and "acceptable"?

    I would take issue with your use of the phrase 'appalling behaviour' - it was rude and he should have known better, but no-one died; no-one was physically attacked. This is the problem today and it is down to tabloid headlines where everything is 'horrific' or a 'tragedy' - people rush to use the strongest term possible for relatively minor events, with the consequence that when something really horrific happens, there are no words to describe it properly, because we have used them all on lesser issues.

    As to why he took it further, do you remember the onslaught of media hype around this incident? Do you remember the police tee shirts ' PC Pleb and proud'? Do you remember the false account made from a supposed witness? Do you remember the leaks to the Sun newspaper which printed alleged extracts from police notebooks? Do you remember the Police Federation Reps in his constituency who mislead the media about what had been said?

    Given all that, if he was sure he did not say the P word (and he denied it right from the start and never wavered in that, leading to the recent libel case) what should he have done?

    I don't particularly like the man and I think he should have had better control over his temper, but on the other hand the frenzy surrounding the whole thing, helped by the police themselves it has to be said, was not edifying either. The media and others were out for his blood and nothing could have stopped them.
  9. If you remember, he did apologise for swearing at the police. He disputed the accusation that he used the word pleb. In the end, it was his word against the policeman and the judge said it was on the balance of probabilities that he did use it, because the policeman lacked the wit to use the word himself. Not a terribly satisfactory way to arrive at a decision, but I guess the judge had no choice when the other policeman (not the one in the action) couldn't be bothered to complete his notebook.

    If we are searching for the perfect person to trust with power, then it will be a long wait.

    Another useful saying - 'Let he who is without sin, cast the first stone.'

  10. Whatever happened to the notion of '...sticks and stones...'? When I was at school, and the playground bullies started, that was the riposte which shut them up.

  11. It is interesting that the judgement was made on the balance of probabilities that the judge seemed to think the policeman was too lacking in wit to think up the phrase........That doesn't say much about the people who are supposed to be guarding Downing Street.
  12. The reason that Tesco doesn't appear to be a lot cheaper nowadays is the system I explained earlier. Every time you shop in a Tesco, you are given money off a litre of fuel. You can save these up (I got 10p per litre off my last tankful (and it was only £1.22 a litre to start with) so that was a good deal), or you can spend them every time. It is all done on the computer so there are no annoying vouchers etc to worry about. That is probably why their petrol stations were busy.
  13. Again, thoroughly in agreement with what you say. I don't know what the answer is. The UK has had decades of multiculturism and despite statements that it has failed from a variety of people, nothing has been done to mitigate its extreme effects.

    Nothing could be clearer in pointing up its failure than the events in Rotherham over the years where everyone seemed to either know what was going on, or be in denial about it, but all of them were afraid to act for fear of being accused of racism. How many children suffered and for how long as a result of it?
  14. Theiere wrote:

    Pay at pump should be similar either side of the channel except the Tesco and Sainsburys pumps have no paper receipts available so you have to go back into the shop and queue to collect it! getting you back inside for spurious purchase of something else.

    You are mistaken in the case of Tesco - if you pay at the pump, a receipt is printed there - you do not have to go into the shop. I can't speak for Sainsbury's.
  15. Yes, I agree, WB, about the absence of sensible cultural education. Any society which carries the belief that the honour of the family/tribe is vested in the behaviour of its women is bound to abide by restrictive practices in terms of dress and the ability to move outside the home.

    This attitude leads to incidents like the recent gang-rape of a woman from a family where one of the men had insulted the honour of another family. This punishment was considered just despite the fact that the crime was committed by a man and the raped woman was innocent.

    What is not acceptable, in my opinion, is to bring these cultural values and attitudes to Western societies. As people have pointed out, Western women living in restrictive cultures abroad have to conform to the laws of that land,and therefore so should people living in a Western culture, regardless of where they came from.
  16. I'm with Betty here - getting through a French supermarket petrol station kiosk is slow and there is always the one driver who screeches from his (and it is always a him) pump to squeeze past you in order to get in front to pay.

    My local Tesco has wide spaces around the pumps, off pump parking and a choice at every pump whether to pay in the kiosk or at the pump. It offers significant discounts on the pump price depending how much you have spent - the computer keeps track of it, so no worrying about little vouchers to submit, you are simply asked at the payment point if you want to 'spend' your discount or save it up for later. It's a good experience.
  17. [quote user="You can call me Betty"].

    ... or is there still just a rather odd belief that a woman can be defined by her choice of clothes?[/quote]

    I'm afraid that in some quarters, that is exactly what many believe. We have all read accounts of rape allegations where the way the woman in question dressed seems to be an excuse for what happened to her.

    The fact that many foreign cultures require women to be shrouded in vast black garments, their hair covered and in some cases their faces too, says a lot about that culture's view of the weakness of men who it seems are unable to control their lust at the sight of an ankle, bare arm, hair or facial features.
  18. I have no objection to Muslim or other faith women covering their hair with a head scarf or wearing garments which cover arms and legs. I do object strongly however to women covering their entire face, with just a small slit so their eyes show.

    In our culture, we read body language and facial expression is a fundamental part of that. There was a teaching assistant who lost her job because she would not show her face and the children had great difficulty communicating with her. She went to court, and lost.

    If women were to go to Saudi or some other strongly Muslim country, they would not expect to walk around in revealing clothes because that is the culture of that country, if not the law. There should be a reciprocal arrangement with Muslim women who live in Western culture.
  19. There is an element of 'Caesar's Wife must be above suspicion' here. Do we want a set of politicians who are holier than thou? Who hold such a high moral ground that they cannot understand the lives of the voters?

    I say we need a cross-section of people who represent all elements of society, warts and all. They are our representatives, not some impossibly pure individuals who never tell a lie, nor put a foot wrong, in anything they do.
  20. Farage tries to pretend that he is different - I guess the pint and the fag are props to underline that - but he was privately educated, spent years in the City and has utilised all his MEP expenses to fund a UK party and fails to vote on EU matters even when that will benefit the UK. So how is he different to other politicians?
  21. I don't want to rain on anyone's parade but there was a report in the papers earlier this week saying HMRC had actually made mistakes in calculating people's tax and therefore some had received rebates they were not entitled to and HMRC would like them back, please.

    So, if you get an envelope with the magic initials on it...........
  22. I see a vast difference between uncovering the expenses stuff , which had been going on for years and needed dealing with and a newspaper deliberately going out of its way to create a situation which it can then plaster all over the paper with a 'shock, horror' attitude.

    Wasn't there an issue recently over a court case and the undercover 'shiekh' who acted as an agent provacateur? This case would seem the same type of thing.

    I have just listened to a barrister on PM discussing the possibility of the Sunday Mirror and its journalist being prosecuted - I hope they are. It might prevent this sort of thing happening again to anyone - celebrity, MP, vicar or whoever the paper feels it needs to take down a peg or two.
  23. Well MPs are hardly alone in thinking they are clever or have deluded egos. I don't feel particularly sorry for this MP either. However, I do have concerns that a newspaper should carry out such a sting operation so that the results can be published on the day that a particular political party conference is starting. It is interesting that only MPs from one particular political party were targeted. Do we think that the newspaper concerned thinks that only the male MPs from that party would be up for it?

    I would feel the same if the 'victim' had been from any other walk of life.
  24. It is interesting this thread has concentrated on politicians (and, for some reason, teachers) but what about the newspaper which put one of its journalists to impersonate a member of a political party and chat him up? It seems this journalist approached several Conservative MPs and this one was silly enough to bite.

    But what about the ethics of the process? What about the self-regulation of the press?

    Isn't it the job of newspapers to report news, not create it by running sting operations?
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