Archive for Britain

Britain joins the anti-fracking club: "Welcome to the desolate North. Now frack off."

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Regular readers know that fracking (which is when water mixed with sand and chemicals is injected deep underground at high pressure to shatter rock formations to unlock oil and gas trapped inside) is the new F word at The Political Carnival. I write about fracking a lot (scroll), and for good reason. For instance, tap water in the form of chemically induced flames spewed from faucets where fracking is prevalent, as is depicted in the excellent film Gasland.

Did you know that fracking is linked to methane risks: “When methane concentrations are that high, water can bubble like champagne.” Mmm, yummy. Cheers!

And don't even get me started on climate change.

Rachel Maddow has been all over this topic and is currently exposing the possible (ahem, probable) link to unusual and frequent earthquake activity associated with intruding on Mother Nature this way:

oklahoma earthquakes fracking

Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Today's Los Angeles Times front-paged a report about how "energy-hungry Britain" residents aren't too thrilled with the practice either; this despite Prime Minister David Cameron being a huge fan, "practically hailing as a miracle" the environmental mess the U.S. is creating in the name of keeping gas prices low.

But one activist, Hytham Chlouk, calls this so-called "miracle" "the selling of Great Britain." How right he is:

"This is the selling of Great Britain," Chlouk said, peering out from behind a pair of glasses and a mop of brown dreadlocks. "I don't want my beautiful country destroyed. I'd hate for it to be like some places in America that look like alien landing zones."

bingo2Here's how the British countryside looks now:

english countryside britain

Hence the obvious reason for blow-back:

The deep-seated hostility is rooted in peculiarly British characteristics and experiences. One is the near-religious reverence among many Brits for the countryside, which makes them especially zealous in driving away any threats to their "green and pleasant land" of hills and sheep and hedgerows, whose beauty has inspired poets and soldiers at war.

Then there were the literally jarring events of the spring of 2011, when two small earthquakes struck near the seaside town of Blackpool in northwestern England. The larger registered a mere 2.3 in magnitude, but the tremors were big news on this seismically docile island — and even more so after government-appointed independent experts concluded that they had been caused by a new fracking operation in the area.

Protesters (they prefer "protectors") call the fracking efforts "rapacious capitalism" and are carrying signs that say things like, "Welcome to the desolate North. Now frack off." Well done, mates.

"Their sole motive is to make profit. They're not here to provide a service or to give cheap gas," said Tim Williams, one of the few camp dwellers clearly older than 30. "We don't want the countryside to be industrialized.... Without the land, what do we have?"

Clear? Now bugger off, frackers, you sad arses are as mad as a bag of ferrets and you're giving everyone collywobbles.

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Video Overnight Thread: The Difference Between the UK, Great Britain, and England

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medievaleurope

I've been watching a Netflix series recently called 'World Without End'.  It's very well done and represents, more or less, the early years of King Edward III's reign (1327-1377) as seen through events in the (fictional) town of 'Kingsbridge', and in London and on the battlefields of France.

I highly recommend it.

http://dvd.netflix.com/Search?v1=world+without+end&ac_abs_posn=-1&fcld=true&ac_rel_posn=-1&ac_category_type=none&raw_query=pina

A few years back my brother sent me a link to this video which explains the difference between the United Kingdom, Great Britain, and England.

Hold onto your hats ! (It's so fast you have to listen very carefully!

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Top UK cardinal accused of "inappropriate" and "intimate" behavior with priests. #FamilyValues

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Via adammclane.com

Via adammclane.com

You've heard of Rock the Vote, you've heard of rock the boat, but have you heard of rock the church?

WaPo:

LONDON— On the same day as his last public blessing Sunday, Pope Benedict XVI confronted the threat of a fresh scandal within the church hierarchy, with Vatican officials informing him of new allegations that Britain’s most senior Roman Catholic cleric had engaged in inappropriate behavior with priests.

In Britain, the accusations against Cardinal Keith O’Brienhead of the church in Scotland and one of this nation’s most strident opponents of gay rights—were already escalating into a national controversy. The controversy revolved around a report first published Saturday night on the Web site of Britain’s Observer newspaper, saying that four men – three current and one former priest — had denounced O’Brien earlier this month for engaging in “inappropriate” and “intimate” behavior. Through a spokesman, O’Brien denied the charges and was said he was seeking legal counsel. [...]

[O]ne of the alleged victims claimed O’Brien had instigated a “relationship” with him in the 1980s that resulted in the need for long-term counseling. Another of the men said O’Brien had initiated “inappropriate contact” during nightly prayers, according to the paper.

O’Bigot O'Brien has referred to marriage equality as a “grotesque subversion of a universally accepted human right” and has let it be known that he thinks gays are immoral.

But "inappropriate, intimate" behavior with men of the cloth works for him. During prayer time. Got it.

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And don't get me started on Roger Mahony.

UPDATE: O'Brien resigned.

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Video Overnight Thread- Happy Guy Fawkes Day!

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MMM, burning gingerbread... Via.

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Spain's Deputy Prime Minister on Romney: "What I see is ignorance of what is reality."

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First we had Mitt Romney’s terrible, horrible, no good, very bad British gaffe-athon.

Then a Jewish group said, hey Mitt Romney, 17,000 of us want you to apologize to the Palestinians for your “racist and ignorant” comments as Palestinians protested Romney statements as "racist".

And let's not forget this old chestnut: Russia is “without question, our No. 1 geopolitical foe.”

So there was that.

It's a new day, and with each new day, Willard M. Romney brings us a new hot mess. Today's involves his latest: managing to offend Spain. He's running out of countries to insult, but never you mind, he'll keep at it until he angers the entire world!

Romney is planning a big important foreign policy speech Monday at the Virginia Military Institute. Let's see if he addresses any of his many, many worldwide embarrassments, the most recent at the presidential debate during which he claimed Spain was a perfect example of government spending gone wild.

How endearing.

HuffPo:

That left Spaniards confused, and threatened to reinforce Romney's perceived handicap in international affairs [...] Spain's level of government spending is actually low by European standards, and significantly less than Germany and Scandinavian countries with far healthier economic prospects. Spain's woes were chiefly caused by the collapse of a property bubble that had fueled more than a decade of booming economic growth.

Spanish reaction to Romney was swift.

"What I see is ignorance of what is reality, but especially of the potential of the Spanish economy," said Deputy Prime Minister Soraya Saenz de Santamaria.

Maria Dolores Cospedal, leader of Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy's Popular Party, noted that "Spain is not on fire from all sides like some on the outside have suggested." Foreign Minister Jose Manuel Garcia Margallo called it "very unfortunate that other countries should be put up as examples" when the facts are skewed. [...]

By singling out Spain, Romney ruffled feathers in a country he will probably need to call on for assistance if he becomes president. Spain has almost 1,500 troops in Afghanistan. It contributed fighter jets, refueling planes and naval vessels to the U.S.-led NATO mission that ousted Libya's Moammar Gadhafi from power.

Ouch.

Sure, Mitt can confidently bounce onto a debate stage full of himself, his reinvention, and his lies, but raising international eyebrows-- again-- exposes him for the inferior, ignorant candidate that he is. Let him try to run from, laugh off, or Etch A Sketch that.

H/t: Bernie Andreu

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What’s wrong with Mitt Romney? "There is something very odd" about him.

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Joan Walsh's Salon piece raises an important question that John Aravosis and Gaius Publius at AMERICAblog and I would like to keep raising. Willard Romney’s terrible, horrible, no good, very bad London gaffe-athon may be symptomatic of something a little deeper than political ineptitude.

You've heard of the book What's the Matter with Kansas? Well now some of us are beginning to wonder, what's the matter with Willard?

But seriously, what are we to make of Romney’s Olympics debacle? How could this happen to the man who ran the 2002 Olympics? [...]

I’ve written that Romney’s many gaffes reflect his enormous sense of entitlement and lamentable lack of empathy. [...]

But could it be more than entitlement and an odd personal style? I’ve found myself wondering over the course of the campaign whether Romney has some kind of personality disorder, so dissociated does he occasionally seem from the well-worn routines of normal human interaction. Maybe we should be asking to see his medical records and not just his tax returns. I don’t mean to be flippant about that or insensitive to any kind of problem he may struggle with. But his struggles are our struggles; he’s running to be our president. There is something very odd about Mitt Romney.

So perhaps it's time to tack on an addendum to the "Show us your tax returns" demands. Mitt Romney, show us your medical records.

Please read Joan's entire post here.

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VIDEO: #RomneyShambles

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#RomneyShambles indeed.

hits Willard Romney's terrible, horrible, no good, very bad London gaffe-athon.

A glimpse into Romney diplomacy, such as it is.

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