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The diaTribe blog is our occasional take on life, the universe and everything. Observations on current affairs, the environment, politics, humour and music/gig reviews. Travel diary and extreme sports stories, along with the usual rants/raves are also chucked in for good measure.

June 2019
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Rave: Summer in England

Summer in England (lake at Bramshill). Photo: P.Mckenzie, Bandanna Club

Today is the Summer Solstice – the longest day of the year. Hard to believe that the days will now start to get shorter again, but there you go…

All over the UK, the last few weeks have seen many a clear blue sky with temperatures as high as the mid 30′s (C).

At the site I currently work at in Hampshire, all the trees and flowers have burst into their full bloom. Everywhere, the whole place seems to be teaming with life and I find myself looking for excuses to get outside – just for a few minutes – at regular intervals.

Most evenings when I pull into my driveway, I catch a whiff of one of the smells of summer; freshly cut grass, BBQ lighter fluid (and later more mouthwatering smells!) etc. At times like this, I can’t think of many other places in the world that I would rather be.

Forget France – come to England!

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Rant: Always the Stick – Never the Carrot!

Traffic on the Brompton Rd, London.

Late last week, the new Transport Secretary Douglas Alexander announced a £10m fund for the development of nationwide road charging schemes.

A day later, London’s Mayor Ken Livingston indicated during a public debate that the London congestion charge could rise to £10 per day.

… more »

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Rant: Water Water Everywhere…

Water pouring.  Photo: Xara Ltd

Over the last month, water companies across the south have been imposing hosepipe bans (and taking the opportunity to increase tariffs and press the Environment Agency, to approve compulsory water meter installation).

While it is certainly true that the last 9 months has been an unusually dry period and this, combined with a significant level of consumer waste has made a bad situation worse, the root cause of the problem is undeniably years of underinvestment in the water infrastructure.

… more »

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Rant: What a Charlie!

Jail Cells

The latest home office fiasco has demonstrated why Charles Clarke is earning his nickname: “Jockstrap” (because he is full of b*llocks).

Not content with inadvertently releasing over a thousand foreign prisoners, it’s now clear that the Home Office freed 288 foreign prisoners after they became aware of the problem last summer! In all, the home office released 1023 offenders between February 1999 and March 2006. They included those guilty of serious offenses including drug dealing, rape, murder and pedophilia.

… more »

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Centrex site nominated for New Statesman award.

Just been told that the Centrex Website has been nominated for a New Statesman Award (Modernising Government category).

Might have meant a bit more to me if the boss had included me in the congrats memo (instead, in typical style the kudos included 2 other managers: one of whom was a permanent project obstacle and the other of whom did sod all!) – oh well – that’s a contractors lot I suppose…

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Tony’s To Do List

(now - where's the 'wave and smile' button?)

A page from Tony’s diary

Pacific Tour Notes

Things to Remember:-

  1. Australia – Give pep talk to Howard’s “blokez” encouranging the Ozzies to stay on in Iraq and Afghanistan.

    … more »

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New eBay category: Labour Peerages

Lord Ashburton

Welcome to eBay!

eBay Account: tonyandhiscronies

Item Number: L4B0URRL14R5

You are bidding on the right to make a substantial, unsecured loan to the UK Labour party, in exchange for nomination as a peer in the house of lords.

This is a rare opportunity to be part of a classic English institution, until death (or a colostomy bag blockage) takes you. Only a limited number of seats in the House of Lords are available*1 so bid now to avoid disappointment.

… more »

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