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North Korean rocket scientist goes home and hugs kids.

12 Dec

All civilians are instructed to continue with their work program.

That is all.

Is somebody gonna come and wake me up when I’m supposed to salute…?

RoSPA shocked by how ordinary people actually live their lives.

24 Oct

I’ve got nine lives. You ain’t. Deal with it.

RoSPA has expressed shock and dismay that people drive while holding mobile phones.

The ninety year old veteran survivor of countless accidents and a couple of world wars was startled to discover that  people who drive cars through necessity often ignore common-sense advice on the use of mobile phones.

“It beggars belief!” said RoSPA, looking up from his newspaper while eating his breakfast and stroking the cat. “You’d think these people were quite unaware of the risks they were taking. I shall write an article about all this – you see if I don’t!”

Responding to Roadwax’s undercover reporter, RoSPA’s housekeeper and assistant, Verity Crash-Bangwallop, explained that RoSPA doesn’t get out much these days and is quite unaware that the practise has been going on for over twenty-five years.

“He normally gets upset when it comes up in the newspapers every now and then but he’s usually better by the time I bring him his lunch. Last Thursday, he became incandescent when I explained to him that bears are reluctant to use toilet facilities in woodland areas. I just locked myself in the Safety Room until he calmed down. He’s really very nice.”

The matter first came to light when RoSPA was informed by the local Community Support Officer that a youth had been spotted driving in the village while holding a mobile phone. RoSPA immediately wrote a letter to his local MP to highlight the shocking issue and asked the PCSO to keep him informed of any developments.

Local Independent MP Brian Loadsworth explained that RoSPA was quite unaware of the pressures upon normal members of society to receive and transmit data while driving.

“RoSPA is a nice old chap but his idea of driving is to gently ease into his old Mercedes 300TD and potter the half mile to the village shop to buy some matches for his Aga. He is quite unaware that some people spend many hours of the day driving while being pressurised by bosses and clients to provide them with time-sensitive information.”

“When I recently explained that some mothers need to contact child-minders to say that they were stuck in stationary traffic and would be late to pick up their child as a consequence, he was most resolute. He felt certain that this could be easily done while pulling over into a lay-by, switching the engine off and making the call whilst wearing a high visibility jacket at the side of the road. Fortunately, Verity brought us some lunch and the matter was dropped.”

With UK drivers currently being four times more likely to be involved in an accident when using a mobile phone while driving, pressure is on for the Police and also safety experts to find a solution.

A week long initiative by East Scrains Traffic Police to intercept drivers who were holding phones provided valuable results.

“We got our message across. You can’t drive with a mobile phone clamped to your ear. Not when one of our lads has just broken both your legs,” said Det. Insp Darren Shaft. “We usually get caught up in this nonsense debate about once a year. If we come down too hard then we lose the trust of the public. But we have to be seen to do something. We refer to it as “culling”. It ticks all the boxes and lets us get on with our real jobs.”

Dame Elizabeth Jobs-Agoodun from the road safety charity MENACE was more scathing.

“The threat of being sidelined by your boss for demanding that your car be supplied with the latest telecommunications equipment is no excuse. Working people should live within their means and ensure that they are perfectly educated in all aspects of the instruction manual provided with their leased vehicle. It really isn’t good enough.”

A simple and inexpensive campaign suggested by Roadwax to provide cheap Bluetooth hands-free kits to all motorists for the same price as a Cornish Pasty was launched today.

Det Insp Darren Shaft was not convinced.

“So, where did you get hold of all these then? Let’s ‘ave a look in the back of your van. Hands where I can see them…”

Lord Green, Minister for Trade and Investment: A Distinguished Career in Reverse.

12 Aug

The Lord moves in mysterious ways…

August 2012

Private Eye Magazine (UK) reporter Richard Brooks states that “London is at the centre of a web of embezzlement that steals from the world’s poorest while bankers and regulators look the other way.”                                                                                

August 2012

Lord Green, previously chief executive of HSBC  is now linked to money laundering investigation                                                                                                              

August 2012

Standard Chartered Bank (UK) is accused by US regulators of laundering Iranian money.

August 2012

Barclays Bank (UK) accused of “reckless mis-selling” of a business product.   

July 2012

Lord Green accused by US Senate of ‘failing to halt flow of drugs cash’

July 2012

HSBC (UK) is now the focus of a major tax fraud investigation by HMRC into its Swiss -owned subsidiary. Allegations include laundering Mexican drug money and being a haven for British tax evaders.                                                                                                                                                            

 July 2012.

25% of British Conservative Party donors come from the financial sector in the UK. Prominent Tory donors are linked both to firms that have successfully gained government contracts – and also the government decision-making panels that awarded the contracts. A clear conflict of interest.                                                                                                                  

July 2012.

Bob Diamond, UK chief executive of Barclays Bank resigns. Barclays blames ‘…senior Whitehall figures…’

July 2012.

Barclays Bank (UK) accused of fixing Libor exchange rate.                                                                                                                     

May 2012

LTSB (UK) banking chief Jessica Harper is accused by CPS of operating a £2.5m scam while working as the LTSB’s head of security and digital banking.                                                                                                                                                                               

May 2012

Santander (UK) and LTSB (UK) accused of failing to provide affordable loans to small businesses despite signing up to the £20 billion government scheme.

(it has been often said by those who know, that ‘a week is a long time in politics’. At this point in the time-line, Lord Green has now been in his position as Minister for Trade and Investment for over a year.)

January 2011

Lord Green is appointed by David Cameron as Minister of State for Trade and Investment.

November 2010

Stephen Green is given a life peerage by David Cameron and enters the House of Lords as Lord Green

October 2010

Stephen Green, ex director of HSBC Private Banking (Suisse), The Bank of Bermuda Ltd, HSBC (Mexico), Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation, steps down and discusses joining the Conservative Party with David Cameron.

Standard Chartered and FSA stumble after NYSDFS and Jeffrey Robinson kick zimmer frames.

7 Aug

“Comatose”.

With this one word, American financial crime analyst Jeffrey Robinson described the  British Financial Services Authority on the BBC’s national radio news today.

Of course, being a writer, Jeffrey placed the word into a coherent sentence (you get more jobs that way) but his damning judgement rang out across Britain as a thousand pictures could never do.

The New York State Department of Financial Services is gunning for City of London -based Standard Chartered Bank. Standard Chartered was accused of breaking pretty much every rule that matters in an apparent attempt to launder Iranian money.

Standard Chartered shares dived by over 16% in value today as the news got out that the bank had ventured into the cross-hairs of one of the world’s most influential financial investigatory bodies.

Strange then, that Britain’s own FSA was not the one making the accusations or even raising a pair of opera glasses? Not really.

Although the FSA describes itself as the body that regulates the financial industry in the UK, it has an almost unbroken record of not regulating the financial industry in the UK. The FSA’s record is startling in both breadth of inertia and depth of failure.

The FSA has failed to step in on almost every single case relating to a British bank that is now facing charges of corruption, mis-selling, dishonesty or fraud. Almost every high-street bank in Britain is now facing legal action for one crime or another but none of those legal challenges was begun by the FSA.

The FSA appears to be run by people who share the interests of the fraudsters whom it is responsible for regulating and excluding from Financial Services. How else could it explain such a ridiculously poor performance? Has it been off work with a bad back since 2002?

And this is where Jeffrey Robinson comes in. While the American version of the British FSA is regulating British banks, the American version of our business analysts accuses the British FSA of being “comatose”.

You see, as the Americans have often pointed out, we British don’t know how to complain.

And if we do, we often find that doors close in front of us and promotions don’t appear as they used to. Our job positions are deleted in sudden cost-cutting exercises and we may be regarded as “no longer having the correct security credentials.”

Jeffrey Robinson doesn’t need a promotion to keep up with the mortgage on his apartment and he’s not scared of the greasy and corrupt men and women behind the scenes in the City of London. Many British commentators are afraid and with good reason.

Remember, Britain is a small island, easily fitting inside the footprint of some US states. David Kelly ended up committing suicide when he was hounded for leaking a few facts. Well, that’s the official explanation. Read the whole Wiki article before you reach a judgement. The undisputed facts of a very British death.

Just like in World War 2, The Americans may have dived in a little late but they do seem to be digging in rather nicely, making up for lost time. Once again, they’re fighting alongside the British people against a small band of wealthy elitists who threaten the democracy and stability of the west.

It is not quite clear whether Prime Minister Cameron and Chancellor Osborne are willing to ‘do a Rudolf Hess’ and extract themselves from the influence of their six Bullingdon Club friends and the dozens of Old Etonians who are now influential city bankers and financiers. It would be difficult for either of them to use the excuse: “We were only following orders.”

An out-of-touch and under-skilled Prime Minister gives the job of Chancellor to his close Bullingdon Club friend, despite that friend having no personal experience of business. Not a problem…if your city friends actually run the show from the shadows, is it?

Unless American institutions and American commentators start to speak up now, the bad guys could win for good this time.

Today’s war is not about Democracy versus Fascism, nor the failure to regulate. It is a war about Lawfulness versus the illegal and covert creation of supreme wealth and unimaginable power.

UK Traffic Police to declare war on Hipsters. Time to sell the VW.

15 Jul

In an attempt to deflect the rising public hostility towards bankers and politicians and traffic wardens, the UK government has announced a firm  strategy to eradicate Hipsters.

Recent research has revealed that, whereas it is almost impossible to punish those responsible for the economic collapse of western nations, it is a comparatively cheap fix to divert anger towards the relatively unprotected Hipster.

In Britain, it is still illegal to assault or abuse anyone who quotes Morrissey lyrics while wearing Vans trainers that are ironically untied or missing laces.

France plans to bring in a law soon to ban the resting of copies of ‘Brave New World’ on the table of any Starbucks cafe between 05:00hrs and 01:00hrs. However, British Hipsters are generally understood to be too incapable of understanding double-irony and a local solution has been sought.

Professor Brian Loadsworth, Senior Research Fellow at the Falmouth Research Institute into Ridiculous Posturing has worked with the Police and Civil Service to create a strategic response. In his research paper, he reveals the secret behind the planned campaign.

      “…In experiment P/51834, we discovered that Hipsters only have superficial knowledge of the subjects they espouse. We conditioned 6 male  and 6 female Hipsters to quote early Smiths lyrics in return for a reward of food being pushed through the bars of their cage. Sadly, the experiment had to be abandoned when they all died of starvation.

In experiment P/51835, we conditioned 12 more Hipsters to expect an electric shock if they dressed in both leather jackets and coloured leggings at the same time. The resultant electricity bill was exorbitant and the morgue had no room for further bodies. We realised we needed a change of approach.

We contacted the Driver Vehicle Licensing Authority and discovered that 98.73% of post – 1972 Volkswagen Beetles are owned by Hipsters. Hipsters are so desperate to be seen in one that they overlook the fact that these vehicles are neither Tax-Exempt (like the pre-1972 cars) nor economical to run. 

Further consultation with the Association of Chief Police Officers revealed that the necessary law was already in place. Indeed, ACPO made it clear that many Officers would be willing to work for free to implement what they referred to as ‘Operation Savage Dawn’….”

Below is the actual excerpt from the UK Government website. It explains how the Police deal with traffic crimes:

How the police deal with traffic crimes

The police have the right to stop a vehicle for any reason. Find out what your rights are if you are stopped by the police for a road traffic offence and what will happen next.

The photograph chosen by the government website makes it quite clear. A 1970’s Beetle with some fashionable cosmetic rust patches is depicted. The driver of this studiously hip VW is reminded that the police have the right to stop this vehicle for any reason.

Professor Brian Loadsworth has calculated that the Hipster will be consigned to history within 246 consecutive working days, or roughly a fortnight if both Strathclyde and Surrey Police chip in some overtime.

Cyber-casing: Did you just Geo-tag your car keys to a criminal?

10 Jul

She ‘likes’ Audi on Facebook. She uploaded the name of the cafe she is currently in to Twitter. The keys are in her bag, by her feet. Her phone is visible on Bluetooth.

Criminals are increasingly focusing their efforts upon those people who upload valuable data to social networking sites.

“Cybercasing”  is the term used to describe the process by which a criminal can anonymously monitor a potential victim by watching as they sequentially upload valuable data about their possessions and their current geographical location.

A Simple Example:

Facebook Status Update: “A picture of me and my new Audi at the dealer franchise in Dallas!”

then, two days later…

Twitter Update: ” In Rocky’s Bar, Dallas with Kim. Come and join us!” – sent via iPhone App

The criminal already knows what you look like (you posted your beautiful face on Facebook, didn’t you?) and you told them what you drive. They now know your precise location (you just uploaded a helpful map to Twitter using your iPhone, didn’t you?) and that you are relaxing in a cafe bar.

Just as the Darwin Awards were invented in the 1990’s to honor those who killed themselves through their own stupidity, so time may be running out for those who openly advertise their valuable possessions and their geographical whereabouts to 900 million complete strangers.

Insurance companies already refuse to pay out on theft claims from people who have left their keys in their car’s ignition…only to find that some absolute cad has slipped behind the wheel and selected “Drive” while they were chatting to the postman or getting something from the house.

It makes sense to assume that it will not be long before the insurance industry takes a dim view of those who sequentially reveal information to strangers about their identity, location, their valuables and where to find the keys.

Most police forces, just like professional criminals, make full use of un- encrypted cell phone messages and social networking sites to hunt down their prey. In the case of the Police, they are usually trying to intercept a particular person but criminals are interested in knowing where someone is  for the opposite reason: if the person is at the beach, then they aren’t at home. If they drove into town then their keys are certainly with them. If they are out celebrating with friends then they may not be on their guard.

Professional athletes have known for some years that their houses are most likely to suffer a break-in while they are away competing or playing their sport. Everybody who follows sport knows where they are going to be at a certain time on a certain day.

But it seems to be a lesson not yet learned by the average person that Social Media reveals their own movements and plans just as clearly if they openly publicize their social interests, hobbies, friend network and current location.

Love motorbikes? Of course you do. Particularly Harleys. You have a profile of yourself on the Harley-Lovers Site. You post on the forum. You uploaded a picture of your pride and joy. It is one of the rare ones, very desirable. There’s you, in the picture, next to it. You even got three “likes” for the picture. Fantastic bike. Way to go!

Then, you  bought some rare enamel Harley badges on e-Bay. Real bargain! The guy posted them to you sameday. Top seller. Great guy.

That’s right.

You just gave your full address to a complete stranger who now knows exactly where you live.

What’s that you say on Facebook? You and your partner have got tickets to see Radiohead play and you’re in ecstacy ‘cos its her turn to drive?

Excellent.

You will be away from home for at least six hours.

The wireless alarm box will act dumb once I climb my ladder, unscrew the cover and remove the back-up battery. A suction-pad glass cutter on the back door will stop the neighbors hearing anything. Your fuse box is exactly where I expect it to be.

The Harley is in the garage and the keys will be in the drawer in the kitchen.  You have a dog? Nope. You used to.

You can keep the ladder. It wasn’t mine, anyway.

It is becoming ever more crucial that people understand that it is not cool to upload information to websites that can identify and link you like the cross-hairs in a sniper’s gun.

If you value your folk and your possessions, keep it private. Think carefully about whether it is a good idea to keep the same  username across different websites.

Be sociable but always be smart.

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