2 months, 28 days – still sober.
I have been at home today, mainly working on the re-editing of the first 5 chapters of my novel. I’m pretty much finished and will update them in my blog tomorrow.
Pick of the day (1 of 6)
We were going to take Cookie out to give her a swim in the lake but it is really cold today , barely 20 degrees with a cool breeze so we decided it would be better to wait until it warms up a bit. We are probably worrying unnecessarily as golden retrievers come from much colder climate and should be able to deal with cold water and a cool-ish breeze, but who knows- maybe the ones born here have lost their tolerance for cold conditions.Anyway, better safe than sorry.
Pick of the day (2 of 6)
It’s a fascinating time if you have any interest in world politics and world events. Almost everywhere you look there is something momentous going on, and for the first time in years I find news reports, for the most part – very interesting. These days I tend to switch between BBC World News, Aljazeera, The Australian Network and a bit of Fox. Sometimes I will channel hop between all of the above during the course of an hour or so. With all that is going on in the world, I tend to spend a couple of hours late at night watching the news channels and between 30 -60 minutes in the morning when I get up. Then of course I read some of the headlines on the internet – The UK Daily telegraph being my favoured broadsheet, and for most of the day I have BBC Radio 5, (live news and sport), going on in the background while I am working on my computer. BBC Sport on the net provides my sports coverage, along with BBC radio 5.
Pick of the day (3 of 6)
I would rate Aljazeera as the number one TV sports news channel, with The Australian network running a close second, although unfortunately, the Aussies’ news broadcasts are not frequent.
BBC is barely adequate in providing good news reporting and I find many aspects of their programming and presentation extremely irritating. The electronic music they play in between each programme sector– which is extremely frequent – drives me round the bend. I assume it is supposed to be ‘modern’ or ‘with it’ and is designed to appeal to a younger audience, but I very much doubt if they succeed in this aim. They haven’t changed a single piece of this electronic garbage in years and they insist on playing it virtually every time there is no one speaking – which is normally on countless occasions every hour. Then there is this obsession with giving news broadcasts ‘trendy titles’ like ‘The Hub’ and ‘GMT’ – what the fuck are these names supposed to mean? They never tell you. They are just broadcasting the fucking news – the same as any other hour, except they plaster ‘The HUB’ across the screen, obscure a large block of the screen, as the background to every news item, with that fat slob, Nick Gowling’ telling you, breathlessly; ‘This is The Hub!’ every five minutes.
Pick of the day (4 of 6)
Then they have these promotional segments, with that fucking electronic noise in the background, which they play over and over again day after day, week after week, month after month, until you want to throw something at the screen. If I hear some fucking woman with a patronising plum in her mouth, say ‘Welcome to coalitions politics’ or Jeremy Bowen saying to Gaddafi ‘I understand your system’ and Gaddafi telling him; ‘No, you don’t understand our system’ just one more time in yet another of their endless ‘promotional clips’, I think I’ll have a nervous breakdown! All the BBC world producers and editors should either be taken out and shot at dawn, or made to watch Aljazeera for 24 hours non-stop and learn how to run a professional, adult, interesting, UNBIASED, 24 hour news channel, with highly professional reporters, (many of them non-English, yet with a better command of English the entire complement of BBC ‘vernacular’ readers), sensible, no gimmick editing and neutral, non-intrusive background music. Some of the Aljazeera 30 minute documentaries are absolutely outstanding and the they have programmes like ‘Inside Story’ which are so professionally presented and they let the contributors finish what they are saying and not constantly interrupt, as they do on the BBC.
And to crown it all, I couldn’t believe what I was watching the other night when they had their revered reporter, the God-like John Simpson, actually spouting his OWN opinion on what should be happening in Libya and taking serious issue with the UN for approving the no-fly zone. Since when were reporters required to offer their own views on political decisions? They can offer their views on the outcome of decisions, they can tell us if these decisions are popular and the nature of any objections that have been made against them, but to spout their own home spun views, simply tells me that His Highness, Mr John-almighty-Simpson, has lost the plot and the BBC along with him. That is not to say that I either agree or disagree with him, but it is the job of every reporter to be as neutral as possible, not to give us his personal opinion. Who the fuck does he think he is?
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Then we have Fox News, where everybody gives you their personal opinion. But at least with Fox, you know where you stand. You know it is a highly biased, right wing, Murdoch-owned mouth piece and when you watch it you know this and you have a good laugh. When they claim they are ‘Fair and Balanced’ you know they are taking the piss and you have another good laugh. Unlike the mighty BBC, that is funded by British Public and whose so-called independence is defended so fiercely.
I would rather listen to Bill O’Reilly’s overtly right wing hokus pokus, than listen to the proselytizing John… Effing …Simpson…. At least Bill, Glenn, Sean and the rest of the gang are entertaining.
Pick of the day (6 of 6)
I know, I getting a bit carried away about all this.
As I said at the start of this piece, news-wise, it is interesting times and in my next blog I will start to discuss some of the issues that are facing us in 2011.
Butt of the day