A blog by Patrick Crozier

December 12, 2004

The End
Patrick Crozier

As with Transport Blog, so with Croziervision. But why? After all, most of the arguments I advanced for "completing production" of Transport Blog don't really apply here, do they?

Yerno, I'm not really quite sure why I didn't choose to call my new blog "Croziervision". I think it was because I wanted to spend at least some time musing on the very nature of blogging itself and that demanded a complete break: new URL, new software, new host, new post and new name.

Anyway, the deed has been done and I for one am glad - I'm enjoying blogging more than I have for ages. Hope you'll log on sometime.

November 20, 2004

Read Non-Trivial Solutions now
Patrick Crozier

OK, you don't have to but while reviewing Andrew's latest output for just the one good piece I found there was a whole bunch of them. For example, on the 16 year-old train bomber:

Six years? 6? In a juvenile detention centre? For trafficking the explosives used to kill 191 people? Bargain. How much bird do you reckon I'd get for doing the Houses of Parliament?

See what I mean?

Everton better off without Rooney
Patrick Crozier

Yup, the Fink Tanker has done the sums and there can now be no doubt.

November 11, 2004

Healthcare did not start in 1948
Patrick Crozier

According to James Bartholomew

Vlaams Blok banned
Patrick Crozier

Tim Worstall covers it. A few thoughts:

  • It is amazing (even by the standards of the BBC) that this story hasn't received higher billing. Actually, I don't think it has received any billing at the BBC.

  • Are there other examples of this sort of thing happening in Europe? We shouldn't forget our rather pointless broadcast ban of Sinn Fein. And I seem to remember the Spanish banned Herri Batasuna, the political wing of ETA. But these are terrorist organisations ie ones that don't accept the outcome of elections, so I suspect an exception can be made. And I'm not going to get that upset about the Germans banning the Nazis even though a better approach might be to allow them to get thrashed at the polls. No, this seems to be unique.

  • Someone will doubtless tell me that it has not been banned and then go on to bombard me with details. I don't care. Obstacles are being put in the way of a peaceful political party. That's all you need to know.

  • Where next for the Flemings? I don't think the Belgian state is nasty enough to violently oppress its own people. And if democratic avenues are blocked then only undemocratic ones are left.

  • This is a hell of an admission of weakness. "Belgium is such a good place that we have to silence all those who think it should be dissolved."

Footnotes

Vlaams Blok is a Belgian Flemish political party that (depending on who you talk to) either wants to secede from Belgium or are a bunch of neo-Nazis.

October 20, 2004

UK Rock Hall of Fame - Channel Four
Patrick Crozier

About 20 years after the Americans led the way we've finally got round to setting up one of our own and over the next few weeks the founder members will be decided by you the public. Well, some founder members coz they've already got five:

Elvis
The Beatles
Bob Marley
Madonna
U2

Not a good start. Elvis and the Beatles fine. But Madonna!? U2!? Come off it. Bob Marley? Well, I suppose there is a case. But Marley before Berry Gordy? I don't think so. But in a sense you can see the logic. They've decided to admit one artist from each decade. So one from the 50s, 60s, 70s, 80s and 90s. Only one problem: the inescapable truth is that rock peaked in the 1960s and it's been downhill ever since. They would have been a lot better off admitting it. But instead they've lumbered themselves with an 80s shortlist that includes Guns 'n' Roses. And a 90s shortlist... you don't want to know about the 90s shortlist.

Anyway, as I hinted at, every week they take one decade and this week we're up to the 70s (it's in reverse order, see?) so I thought I'd indulge in some little idle speculation on who's going to make the shortlist.

My test for greatness is three great tracks. Any artist who managed three great tracks, at any time, is great. No questions asked. You might like to try the exercise with your own favourite band. Have they produced three great tracks? I tried the exercise with the Smiths and Joy Division (my personal faves) and I have to say I found myself struggling. Got there in the end, though. But it does go to show how great the Beatles, Abba and Elton John - with figures way above this - really are.

Anyway, these are who I think should be on the 70s list:

Elton John
Sex Pistols
Bob Dylan (he got better)
Sparks
Slade
Abba
David Bowie
Led Zeppelin
Jacksons
Queen

With Rod Stewart (Maggie May and I don't want to talk about it) and Roxy Music on standby. Perhaps ELO too.

Yes, I know the Sex Pistols only produced two great tracks but at a stretch you can add Public Image to Anarchy and Vacant and, anyway, they were much more than just another rock group.

October 13, 2004

Weird and wonderful optical illusion
Patrick Crozier

…just here. Via Dave Barry.

October 12, 2004

That spiked Steyn article
Patrick Crozier

Oh, you didn't know Mark Steyn had an article pulled from the Telegraph? Well, he did and it's here. It's about the murder of Ken Bigley. And it's about mawkishness and Dianaism. And it gets close to hitting the nail on the head, though like Anthony Daniels earlier this week, not quite close enough.

October 11, 2004

Let's all play…
Patrick Crozier

…Moonbat Bingo. Here's the current leader:

"Busted are my favourite band. Previously, I was considering voting for the Lib Dems, but now I will vote Tory. They've really changed my mind."

Can you beat that?

October 10, 2004

The secrets of socialist seduction
Patrick Crozier

Peter Briffa reveals all:

Only the other night me and the wife went into a smoked-filled room, and, after several hours of meaningful dialogue, sustained by copious amounts of beer and sandwiches we returned with a composite resolution that, by a show of hands, was put to the floor and passed unanimously.

From birds and bees to beer and butties.

Saddam “didn’t understand international relations perfectly”
Patrick Crozier

…you can say that again. Hilarious (if you forget the torture, human experimentation, mass murder etc) Times account of the last days of Iraqi Ba'athism. Watch out for Saddam's Catch 22: if he admits he has WMD he gets clobbered by the Americans; if he denies it he gets clobbered by the Iranians

Our reaction to Mr Bigley's death is immature, dishonest and decadent
Patrick Crozier

Anthony Daniel's criticises the one-minute silences, the flower laying, the expressions of grief:

The sentimentalisation of public life has been enthusiastically embraced, one might almost say hugged, by New Labour. There could be no more devoted empathiser than Tony Blair, who personally feels the pain of every one of 500 million Africans.

...as he says. But...but...I am uneasy. Not about the general thrust of Daniels's argument - I, too, find this sort of thing deeply distasteful - but more that I don't he has got close to why it is such a bad thing.

October 01, 2004

Michael Moore promotes freedom…
Patrick Crozier

…in Iran. My Left Wing Girlfriend notes:

Interesting post from Daimnation! titled Unintended Consequences regarding Iran and Fahrenheit 9/11. A past example being a Soviet propaganda film which showed the misery and violence of America, however, audiences noticed that even the poorest Americans had their own cars, apartments, television sets, and based on their size, had too much to eat.

A similar thing is happening in Iran…

…"It sure is a great country, where someone like Moore trashes the president and gets away with it -- and makes so much money!"

Fnarr, fnarr.

September 30, 2004

Domestic bliss…
Patrick Crozier

…may not be the most familiar of things to the author of "Things my girlfriend and I have argued about". As he explains:

Combine utter, polar disagreement on everything, ever, with the fact that I am a text-book Only Child, and she is a violent psychopath, and we're warming up. Then factor in my being English while she is German, which not only makes each one of us personally and absolutely responsible for the history, and the social and cultural mores of our respective countries, but also opens up a whole field of sub-arguments grounded in grammatical and semantic disputes and, well, just try saying anything and walking away.

And then follows up with a long, and I mean long, list of examples.

September 29, 2004

Crozier's "10 Ways to Spot a Bogus Argument"…
Patrick Crozier

…looks like it's going to have to wait. Some chap called Madsen Pirie beat me to it.