Archive for the ‘Dark Mountain’ Category

17 November

November 17, 2022

Annual celebration of student uprising to overthrow the Greek junta, the fascist colonels

March to Parliament building.

Ring of steel police vehicles nose to tail riot police to protect Parliament.

Overhead a police helicopter.

Earlier, National Garden closed, centre of Athens closed, Metro stations closed.

Then on to the American Embassy. .

Aegean in-flight meal

November 5, 2022

Served on a card tray, wooden utensils, but cold pasta salad a black plastic tray. Takeaway cup marked as plastic. In Cyprus thus marked. Aegean a Greek airline. Is this an EU designation, as in both cases the same logo?

Collecting up the rubbish, takeaway cups separated and stacked, but then everything dumped in the same rubbish sack.

Cold pasta better than would expect.

… to be continued…

Thick Lizzie resigns

October 20, 2022

To a collective sigh of relief from the country, Thick Lizzie has resigned.

The vile people she has appointed should be removed: business sec, foreign sec, NHS sec.

They have done appalling damage to the country.

The country cannot afford the Tories indulging in another leadership contest. Slick Rishi should be asked to form a government.

Pepsi Trump to stand? It is not even the First of April.

If there is to be a leadership election, no reason nominations cannot be in by midnight tonight. Election held over the weekend.

Tory membership should be excluded.

There is a high risk with short notice electronic voting no checks of foreign bad actors and Russian and Chinese hacks of the ballot

Any leadership contender:

-wealth tax

– windfall tax Banks

– cap bankers bonuses

– windfall tax Big Oil

– windfall tax Big Tech

– 5% revenue tax Big Tech

– carbon tax

– increase minimum wage

– triple lock pensions

– increase benefits

– safeguard on fuel costs

– scrap BID Levy

There has to be an Inquiry into the dark money that funded Thick Lizzie.

There has to be an Inquiry into IEA and other far right lobbyists and the source of their funding.

Queen Elizabeth II State Funeral and Procession

September 19, 2022

Those who serve will be loved and remembered longer than those who cling to power and privilege are long forgotten. — Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby

The final day.

State Funeral in Westminster Abbey, then procession from Westminster Abbey to Buckingham Palace in a gun carriage.

At Buckingham Palace transferred to a hearse for transfer to Windsor Castle.

In the approach to Windsor Castle, the Queen’s pony and two of her corgis.

Thousands lined the route, their lsdt chance to pay their last respects.

Looking back through the entrance to Windsor Castle as the hearse ossded through, one got the imoression of the thousands who lined the route.

A service in St George’s Chapel, before Queen Elizabeth finally laid to rest in a side chapel, joining her father, sister, mother and husband.

I have walked the route of the funeral procession twice.

The night before Princess Di’s wedding. I was in Covent Garden, it was deserted. Where was everyone? Hyde Park, firework display. When people tried to leave Hyde Park Corner, gates closed, only a small gate open. People could not get out. We were very lucky not to be crushed to death. Girl near me, said I calmed those around us. We were slowly slowly being crushed. Had there been panic, we would have been crushed to death. I had a cycle with me. Eventually we got out, but no better, Hyde Park Corner jammed, buses grid locked, jammed with people trying to pass between the buses. We then spent the night walking the route the wedding would take. Not yet many had arrived. We would have had a front view. But tired, I went home. Next day train to Scotland, then cycled from John O’Groats to Lands End.

The next time, funeral of Princess Di.

I popped into the garden during funeral procession as it left Westminster Abbey, silence. The only time I have exorrinced this silence and then even the birds were silent was during a total eclipse of the sun.

Strange times. I still find hard to grasp Queen Elizabeth II no longer with us.

Thirteen days ago she accepted the resignation of Boris Johnson, then appointed Lizz Truss as Prime Minister. She looked frail, but otherwise in good health. A meeting the next day to swear in Privy Councillors did not take place. Lunch time Thursday, her doctors warned they were concerned for her health. Members if her family flew to Scotland to be with her. Early evening we learnt the sad news she had passed away. It was almost as though she had summoned her strength to carry out her final duty. Duty dine, time to pass from this world.

Queen Elizabeth II Lying in State in Scotland

September 12, 2022

Saturday saw the proclamation of King Charles II as King. Reposted in the City of London, then across the Kingdom.

Sunday saw the coffin carried from Balmoral to Edinburgh. A six hour journey, the route lined with people.

Today, saw the coffiin carried from Holyrood Palace, where the body had lain overnight, carried along the Royal Mile to St Giles Cathedral. The Cathedral will remain open all night for people to pay their respects.

Tomorrow, flown from Edinburgh to London. This a huge mistake, should be carried by Royal Train, speed of slow freight train, walking pace through stations, to enable people to line the route and pay their respects.

What has caught everyone by surprise, including myself, the numbers turning out to pay their respects.

Over a million expected in London. A queue has already formed for the lying in state in Westminster Abbey.

I did think of visiting London. Maybe not. I thought of visiting York on Friday. I have learnt from past Experience Friday not a good day. Maybe not York either as the trains will be packed.

Queen Elizabeth II 1926-2022

September 8, 2022

Sad news when I learnt this evening that Queen Elizabeth II had died earlier this evening.

Hard, when someone has been there all your life.

A very long time ago, at a private function, tea with The Queen and Prince Philip. They were on their way to stay with Lord Mountbatten.

More recent memories, London Olympic Games with James Bond (Danial Craig) visiting to say, you are wanted Your Majesty.

Then for the Jubilee in the Summer, tea with Paddington Bear.

Final image, only two days ago, accepting the resignation of Prime Minster Boris Johnson and appointing Liz Truss as her new Prime Minster. Final duty performed, she died 48 hours later. A sense of duty to the end.

The young Queen had the same impact as did later Jackie Kennedy.

Something I learnt today, a direct descendent of Mary Queen of Scots.

Sadness takes me back to when I was at the funeral of Princess Di.


Terminating a BID mid-term

August 25, 2022

Excellent guidance to winding up a BID mid-term.

If a BID Ballot coming up, that is best chance to terminate a BID, put as much effort in as possible to secure a No Vote.

Towns that have managed to kick out their BIDs early include Dartmouth, Hexham, Abingdon and Colwyn.

Yorkshire Coast BID may be on its way out, following a Vote of Confidence by Scarborough Borough Council, and calls for the directors to resign and the BID to be wound up.

Failing that, try to get the BID wound up mid-term.

I would disagree BID boards act in the interest of the locality or local businesses. From what I have seen they squander the money collected to justify their existence, act to feather their own nest, all hidden behind a veil of secrecy and lack of accountability.

The best option, do not let a BID be formed, do not fall for the bullshit, look at the experience of local businesses elsewhere that are being killed by the BID Levy. Once a BID is formed, it is an uphill struggle, though not impossible, to get rid of the BID.

Friday, we see the price cap for domestic fuel users rise to unaffordable levels. For local businesses there is no price cap. Unless action is taken, we are going to see small businesses wiped out of town centres. Already many are failing, unable to afford fuel bills.

The very least that can be done is to wind up BIDs, kill the BID Levy.

Big Business ‘bribed’ to secure a BID Yes Vote

August 23, 2022

This is corruption writ large.

Large corporate chains, to secure a YES Vote, get a substantial discount on the BID Levy they pay.

The same chains who quite likely are giving donations to the Tory Party.

Struggling local businesses are hit with a double whammy. Not only are they hit with a BID Levy, which they cannot afford, they are subsidising corporate chains, thus paying a higher levy than need be. But it’s even worse, had they not been offered a discount for a YES Vote, there would be No BID, no BID Levy.

It is not only chains, shopping centres too pay a reduced BID Levy.

Let’s take a look at Guildford.

The head of the Tunsgate Quarter zombie shopping centre sits on the board of Experience Guildford. Not only sits on the board, is the chair. What can be the contribution of a failing shopping centre? But then could ask the same of the chair of Bury St Edmunds BID, what has to offer with at least two failed businesses?

The rigged Experince Guildford Consumer Service Awards, at least two of the tenants of Tunsgate Quarter shortlisted.

White Lion Walk and The Friary Guildford, two more shopping centres, shortlisted for an award.

Guildford Institute, that happens to be a board member, shortlisted for an award.

The award ceremony to be held at Ivonne Arnaud Theatre. You’ve guessed it, another board member. And for good measure, also shortlisted for an award.

Last year the AGM held at Harbour Hotel. Surprise surprise, another board member.

This though is not the only way BID Ballots are rigged

Casting of multiple votes: Car parks, public toilets given a vote.

Gerrymandering: BID area redrawn to exclude those who may vote No.

Counting of Votes: Businesses not aware of a ballot, not receiving ballot papers, count held in secrecy behind closed doors.

Misuse of BID Levy: BID Levy used to secure a Yes Vote.

Guildford Christmas lights switch on

August 20, 2022

Guildford Borough Council has decided not to pay for a Christmas lights switch on. A sensible decision by the Council. Not a cost effective use of public money.

I once had the misfortune of being in Guildford during Christmas lights switch on, it was a nightmare.

An expensive crowd control nightmare, money wasted on a C-list celebrity.

One town asked a local homeless guy to switch on the lights. Lincoln asked two local veterans of WWII Bomber Command.

Once again, Amanda Masters CEO Experience Guildford shows she is clueless. And that she should be fired and Experience Guildford wound up.

Even though by her own admission she does not know what is going on, she is only too happy to squander money extorted from struggling local businesses that an analysis by the Council has shown not to be viable or good value for public money.

Showing contempt for local businesses. Is the BID Ballot rigged? If not, why offer financial support for an event late November when Experience Guildford may not exist beyond October?

Why does Guildford Borough Council require two seats on the board of the BID?

Neither Experience Guildford nor Amanda Masters speaks for or represents local businesses in Guildford.

Whether or not people visit Guildford and spend money, depends on whether they have money to spend and something to spend money on. It has nothing to do with the pointless activities of Experience Guildford.

The BID Levy is killing struggling local businesses. If wish to help them, wind up parasitical Experience Guildford.

Local businesses suffering

August 19, 2022

With no sense of irony, CEO of Bury Beyond Parody tweets local businesses are being squeezed.

No mention of BID Levy killing local businesses.


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