The Other News From England.

18 December 2000.

(We're getting a bit like Railtrack here - further disruptions to service. There is, however, one significant difference - Railtrack make a very large profit).

Index of earlier issues - click here.

(Those who like digging about will find that there are hundreds of articles on many subjects to be found on this site.)

Old issues.

There are some much earlier Other News on this site. Click below.

early Othernews - 1992, 93, 94.

Bonnington Cafe and Bonnington Square.

Apologies for Saturday just gone - the act was in fact Gabriele Gad and Hugh Harris. This coming Saturday, the entertainment is once again expected to be Phil playing the guitar, the piano, singing, etc., and Hugh Harris (if he is not working on a radio station) has been invited to add his bit of saxophone. Not an easy combination, saxophone and 'folk' guitarist, but quite amusing if you don't get too much of it. Mostly material of a Bert Jansch type. No charge, but the hat goes round.

Bonnington cafe is a communally owned cafe in Vauxhall, Central London. The atmosphere is somewhat Bohemian, international, friendly, educated, and much wine (bought from the corner shop across the road) gets drunk. Good quality vegetarian. Cheap. The only lighting is usually candles stuck in wine bottles, and the furniture is a collection of odds and sods that people have thrown out. The overall result is relaxed and pleasing. People tend to spend the whole evening over their meal, and engage in discussion with those on other tables, the caterer, the band, passers through......

Bonnington Cafe, Vauxhall Grove, London SW8 UK. Near Vauxhall underground and mainline station, buses 185, 36, 2, 88, 322 and others. Booking is difficult.

American Elections.

For us here the story is not over but has only just begun, simply because if people can get away with the alleged malpractices in the USA they will be able to get away with the same in this country. This means that we need to discuss the matter in some depth.

Not only were there claims that the judge who made the final decision that Bush was the winner was overtly biassed, but many thousands of black voters in Florida claim to have been disenfranchised by being disallowed to vote because someone in the legislature decided to brand them as felons (as we understand it, Florida law will not allow convicted felons to vote). Some of them may have been, of course, but black people claim that it was far from all. Black people also claim that the vast majority of their group would have voted for Gore. If this is so, then even with the 'Third World' tactics allegedly waged by Bush supporters (intimidation of people going to the polls), Gore would still have taken the presidency, and without the intimidation it is possible he would have taken it by a good margin.

There is a slight tendency in Britain for people to suggest that Bush may have been the Mafia candidate, but of course there will never be any proof, and it would be very easy for people to say the same thing of any politician. If the Mafia have already got a grip on international politics this would make no difference to what is already happening (in politics), but it might mean there is a great deal of space for improvement.

Looking back into European political history it is not difficult to see that current monarchs where they exist are just the descendants of a bunch of yobs who went about beating up foreigners and calling themselves king. Since some of us accept these monarchs despite that, it might easily be argued that modern Mafia groups are trying to do exactly the same thing in a more modern way, and it could be argued that they have the same rights as those yobs of several hundred years ago did to make a play for power - whether you like it or not (think about that!).

We probably need something a bit better than that, but unless we all stand up for it as individuals we will not necessarily get it.

Ecology.

AMAZINGLY LATE IN THE DAY, the European Union have agreed tough new measures to save many species of seafish from extinction. Various devices will be used to meet the new measures. The minimum permissible size of holes in nets will be increased to allow small young fish to get through, there will be a limit on tonnage of fish landed which will be achieved by putting restrictions on how much each fishing boat may catch, and certain areas will be out of bounds for fishing boats.

Nevertheless, some scientists have been quoted as saying that they do not believe this will be enough to save certain species. There are also various snags about these measures, not least the fact that fishermen catching fish below a certain size will throw them back in the sea dead in order to make space for fish of a larger size to be included in their quota - and the possibility of a black market.

Russians have been reporting the near extinction of sturgeon for some years, with nobody seeming to be making any effort to do anything about it, whilst tribal fishermen in Africa have been complaining that there is virtually nothing for them to live on once a pirate 'factory ship' has been fishing anywhere near their waters.

(The surprise for me is that there are not more fish farmers - even though I understand there are certain snags about fish farming. The water used in the tanks becomes so toxic that it is difficult to know where to get rid of it, and of course it finally makes its way into the sea whatever else happens to it on the way there.)

This is, in the final analysis, all due to the fact that the number of humans increases steadily, and instead of our having more fish as we need we end up with less fish because there are more of us. This cannot go on forever, and the problem may be one of knowing how far we can push it. Until we reach the point of collapse we will not know where that point is, and when we reach it we will probably find it is too late to do anything about it.

So far nobody has successfully designed any method of restricting the rate at which humans multiply that is universally acceptable, which would of course resolve the whole problem in one go - but there is always a war on somewhere, which may not please you or me, but in fact helps the fish's chances.

Nature is not simple, and decisions about it may not be best made by persons who are still able to think of some species as being 'beneficial' and others not (how the hell do they know how something fits into the great plan?). It might need some slightly deeper thought than politicians are in the habit of applying.

Meanwhile, the current measures are a bit better than nothing.

Joe Punter's Shakespeare.

King Henry the 6th. part 2.

ACT 4 .

Scene 10.

Kent. Iden's garden.

Enter Cade.

CADE:

Having hidden out the last five days, my god I'm hungry! Yet I still daren't show my face. There are people looking for me everywhere. So, I've climbed over a brick wall into this garden to see if I can find anything to eat - even grass if necessary - or pick a sallet (apple? other fruit? ed) to cool me guts. Many's the time I've used a sallet as a drinking cup when marching, and now it must quench my hunger.

(Enter Iden and his men behind him).

ALEXANDER IDEN:

Lord, what bliss to be able to come here instead of attending the court with all it's politics and intrigue. My father has left me enough to survive here, and even sufficient to help the odd poor man who may come to my gate. I'm content.

CADE (aside):

So, here he comes to betray me, and capture me to take the thousand crowns reward. But I'll show him the colour of my sword before he does that. He'll eat iron like an ostrich and swallow my sword like a great pin before I die.

IDEN:

Cheeky buggar! Who are you to say that I will betray you? I don't even know you! It's bad enough that you've broken into my garden, let alone any further insult.

CADE:

Look at me then, for I have not eaten these last five days. Nevertheless I swear I will be the last person any of you five shall look upon, or I shall eat grass forever after. You're as good as dead.

IDEN:

Come on. How can I, an esquire of Kent, attack a starving man. Instead, stare me in the eye and see if you can outstare me. If we sit side by side it is easy to see that I am by far the bigger man. Even just my foot would fight with greater strength than the whole of you has, and if my arm was lifted in the air you would be a goner. As for words - take a look at my sword instead. It expresses that which words cannot express.

CADE:

My god, a champion! (to his sword) Steel, chop him into bits of meat or may you be melted down and made into hobnails.

(They fight. Cade falls.)

Oh! I'm slain! It was only hunger, though. Had I been properly fed first I'd have been able to take on anyone. Whither, garden, and become a burial ground for all those who live in this house, for the unconquered soul of Jack Cade is leaving.

IDEN:

Christ, was that Cade? That monstrous traitor? By gum, sword, I will honour you, and you may hang over my tomb when I am dead. I'll never wipe this blood from your tip. You'll wear it as a medal to commemorate the honour your master will get.

CADE:

You should be bloody proud of yourself, Iden. Tell Kent from me that she (Kent) has lost her best man and they might just as well all go and cower in some corner somewhere, for the only man they had who never feared anything has been killed by hunger rather than by valour.

(dies)

IDEN:

How much you wrong me, sir. Die, damned wretch, who is the curse of his mother. And as I thrust my sword into you (yet again!) I wish I could be thrusting your soul into hell. I'll drag you by the heels to a dunghill which will be your grave, and there I will cut off your most ungracious head to carry to the king, leaving the rest for the crows to feed upon.

(Exit Iden and servants dragging the body behind them.)

More next week.

Recycling.

Computer building and modifying freaks will be pleased to know that London Recycling have started marketing used computer bits in their shop in Peckham. Their website is below ('this is a recycling site....'), and I wouldn't mind betting that you could make mail order arrangements with them if you live out of London.

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The stuff that doesn`t often get changed now follows:

Alternet News.

Alternet News might appeal to some readers as a regular list of goings-on in the human rights/green areas of life. You can receive it by email. I have put one copy on this site so that you get an idea of what it is about and how to subscribe.

For sample Alternet email click here.

Biotechnology

Click here for an email that arrived in January 2000 concerning a proposed reasoned approach to this tricky subject

Goforth's social justice e-zine.

This interesting email magazine comes at fairly regular intervals and is of interest to almost anybody who is interested in human rights and green issues. In November 2000 it was going out to about 10,000 addresses. Try it. It won't cost you anything, and you can reproduce the contents without paying. You can subscribe by writing to them at: sjzine@netscape.net, or visit http://members.tripod.com/~goforth/socialjustice.html . Unsubscribe the same way.

This website is about accounting investigations and fiddles. If you like to look at financial scandals (both hidden and public) this might be worth a look. I have not been there myself, but the books produced by these people, although difficult to follow, cover a lot of mysterious ground.

This website is about the destruction of countryside and agriculture. Worth a visit if you want to find out about how it is thought the British countryside will fair under the ongoing creep of the multinationals.

This website is one to do with monetary reform.The British Association for Monetary Reform. If you are interested in economics it is worth a look. http://www.users.globalnet.co.uk/~bamr1

This is a website about alternative currencies.Might be worth a look to those who have realised that you don't necessarily have to have money as such to be prosperous.

This is a website for something called The Green Guide. I know nothing about it, but am hoping it is something worthy. Please let me know if it is questionable.

This is a site concerned with one of the most unpopular planning decisions ever made in Greater London, the Crystal Palace Complex. It is so stunningly awful that only a handful of people who do not live near it appear to approve, whilst the rest are not entirely uninclined to mention such things as payola, freemasons....you name it! The site belongs to the London Borough of Bromley, but the aggro generated by it and the destruction of amenity caused by it will be almost entirely suffered by residents of adjoining boroughs and not the people of Bromley themselves.

This is a recycling site based in London, and offering materials to anybody. The organisation is a charity seeking to link suppliers of surplus materials with users. Especially good for the more ingenious designers amongst us.

The email of the people who run the above site is cs@london-recycling.demon.co.uk. They are called Creative Supplies. Look them up for more info.

Here's an interesting education site - particularly for those who have young children and are not quite sure what to do to avoid the worst of what`s on offer in the mainstream of education.They are called www.edrev.org.

early Othernews - 1992, 93, 94.

Early Other News essays.

There were a few essays that went out with the early Other News as a freestanding item. You can read these by clicking below.

Essays.

The Soup Designer`s Handbook.

The Soup Designer`s Handbook.

London Journey - a trip from Docklands through Beckenham and back to Docklands.

Friday Woodworkers.

(Friday Woodworkers are suffering a temporary break due to some of the episodes not having been fully edited at the time of writing. It may take some timne to fix this problem.

Episode 17.

(These articles were written in 1988, and were my first attempt at writing. Some people when shown these fell about laughing, some smiled faintly - and some yawned. I thought I was going to write a technical book, but it soon became apparent that I was much more interested in the people than the technology - and that is the main reason there are no drawings - although it might be rather good to do a couple of caricatures sometime.)

Index of Friday Woodorker articles (and a means of access).

Index of earlier issues.

Gabriele Gad on alternative therapy.

A READER COMPLAINED that it was not possible to go back more than 6 articles in Gabriele`s area. Regrettably this is because there is no index, and I have not the time to organise one yet. However, for those determined enough to find the early ones, they should be accessible by going to an early Other News and clicking through from it. This will not be fast, but I think will do the job. They started about November 1997 I think.

editor@othernews.co.uk

Cartoons and graphics.

drawings click here.

sheet music click here.

Consumers.

LEXMARK 3200 PRINTER.

In an earlier issue I told you about my feelings regarding Tempo retailers and the Lexmark 3200 printer I bought from them.

The Lexmark 3200 printer I got from Tempo must surely be the most uneconomical printer I could possibly have bought. The black cartridge only does about 250 pages of ordinary type - for 28! That makes each sheet cost 11.2 pence plus the cost of the paper and probably another 11.2 pence more if any colour is used! - ABOUT 22.4 PENCE A SHEET! Nearly a pound for every four sheets!

I wouldn`t recommend you to buy it - but also look at my earlier article for an idea of Tempo`s service.

Wanted

A person to help make up a subject index for the growing numbers of articles on The Other News From England. Email editor@othernews.co.uk

8- or more-track tape recorder. email pcj@gn.apc.org

All material on this site is copyright. Contact me if you want to use it. I am quite flexible. Educational non-profit use is free - but ask for permission and print an acknowledgement. If you can`t think what to print, put:

From The Other News From England. http://www.othernews.co.uk

Even better if you print the date of the article.

editor@othernews.co.uk

That`s all this week folks