Saturday, 15 August 2009

How was it for you Hillary?

POOR Hillary Clinton made world news for getting ratty in the heart of the Congo this week. A male student asked, through a translator, what her husband thought about the Chinese giving a loan to the Congo. She wasn’t, er, too happy about this question. In fact, it’s fair to say she reminded everyone that SHE was in charge now, not her hubby. The amount of interest it generated made it sound like she’d declared war on Africa! In truth, it was mildly amusing. But it was also unfair for the global media to focus on it so much because the student did not, in fact, ask for her other half’s opinion. His question referred to current President Obama’s view. It’s just that the interpreter screwed up the translation, and changed “Obama” to “Clinton.” What a blunder. You can kind of understand Mrs Clinton’s reaction. I mean, how would you feel if every time you went to work and made a suggestion in a meeting, someone enquired: “What does your wife think about that?” Eventually, you’d just flip your lid and either walk out or shout at the irritating git who was going on about it. Since Hillary was in the middle of the Congo at the time, walking out wasn’t an option, as she probably didn’t want to become a tasty snack for the local wildlife. Shouting was the only practical option. So, next time you’re having a pint and Hillary Clinton walks in, don’t say: “Does your husband know you’re here?” If she nukes your local, you deserve it.
THERE’S a lot of politics involved with the London Olympics. Location, investment and transport are always being discussed in Parliament. But the latest debate is about what new sports should be included. Yesterday, female boxing was added as an event at the 2012 games. It’s the first time that ladies punching each other will be included as an official Olympic sport. There’s some history to this. Britain’s first professional female boxer, Jane Couch, took her case for recognition to an industrial disputes tribunal 12 years ago. She claimed the boxing authorities were refusing to give her official status.
The boxing board argued that“Pre- Menstrual Tension” made women too unstable to be boxers! Well, I’m glad the IOC made the right decision. If your missus is a bit peaky, politically speaking, it’s bad for interpersonal relations to tell her she’s too “unstable” to go boxing. While ladies like Jerri Byrne may look lovely in boxing gloves, it was probably safer to let them “go for gold” in the Olympics instead of provoking them to “go for your goolies” in the bedroom.
AS Britain staggers under the weight of rising unemployment, on-going recession and rising prison numbers, everyone’s looking for a hero to save us. Well, could that hero be a cat called Hugo? Apparently, when this feisty feline noticed next door’s house was on fire, he ran in through the cat flap, woke the sleeping neighbour with his paw and saved his life. The local fire brigade said: “We are delighted that this very fire aware cat was able to alert the family on this occasion.” What a star. But I’m worried. In the government’s desperation to save dosh, they might sack all the firemen and replace them with an army of firecats, trained to rescue people from burning buildings. Frankly, as a solution it’s far from purr-fect.
SHOCKING new figures reveal that, last year, there were half a MILLION requests for surveillance procedures in the UK. That means 500,000 separate requests went in to snoop on our e-mails, phone calls and generally spy on what we’re up to. That’s very, very bad. It means the authorities are out there, tracing your credit card expenditure, who you’re phoning, what you’re saying, where you’re staying and which internet sites you’re visiting. And what’s the purpose of all this spying? Is it to stop international terrorism? Are they out to break massive drug cartels? Is the aim to disrupt organised crime? Actually, a lot of it isn’t anything to do with that. They’re checking to see if you’ve been lying to the Benefits Agency, or if you really live where you say you do, or if you know any baddies. They even put one woman under surveillance to see if she’d made a valid school application for her kid. You might say: “So what?” Well, be afraid. Be very afraid. Because if they know everything about you, they can abuse that information in all kinds of ways. After all, what’s to stop the bad guys getting jobs in government, finding out tons about you — and using the information illegally? So you’re in danger — we all are. We’ve got to fight this surveillance society. There’s a lot of danger that the State will become so all-powerful that we lose our privacy altogether. Then, they’ll not only know what we do, they’ll be able to tell us how to live. If we don’t do something soon, before long you’ll need permission to fart from the Department for Climate Change.

1 comment:

  1. Far be it for me to fact check Lembit, but my understanding of events is that the student asking Hillary Clinton has admitted he said "Clinton" and not "Obama" although he insists he meant the latter.