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Alf Bentley

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Alf Bentley last won the day on 26 June

Alf Bentley had the most liked content!

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About Alf Bentley

  • Rank
    First Team
  • Birthday 29/02/16

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Location
    Floating through space and time
  • Interests
    Situationism (passive & active)
    Words and verbosity
    Music with passion
    Consuming mind-altering liquids to defray the tedium
  • Fan Since
    Richard III took his helmet off

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10,062 profile views
  1. The joke thread

    If you look in your Haydn section and find a sausage, your suspicions will be confirmed.
  2. Politics Thread (encompassing Brexit) - 21 June 2017 onwards

    Another good article by Natalie Nougayrède, viewing Europe & the world through the eyes of other nationalities: https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/sep/16/germany-europe-angela-merkel-europe It focuses on German insularity with passing references to France & UK. I won't piss everyone off by pasting the whole thing, but here's a couple of excerpts for @Strokes in view of his "no clicks on the Grauniad" campaign... "The German elections take place on 24 September, and there is zero suspense as to who will be the next chancellor. Angela Merkel is set for a fourth term in office, a key reason being that she has managed to anchor her image as a safe pair of hands – a reliable, solid, tried, unassuming politician who will shield the country from having to give too much thought about how crazy the world has become with Trump, North Korea, Putin, Erdoğan and the rest of it. The Germans simply don’t want to hear much about the troubles of our times and how to face them: they just want to hunker down and keep on living the good life – which is one of Merkel’s CDU party slogans". "British readers should also be aware that German voters haven’t, in this campaign, shown the slightest interest in Brexit. German politicians have all but ignored it as well. Brexit wasn’t mentioned once in the TV election debate between Merkel and her Social Democrat opponent, Martin Schulz. A word about France: it does comes across as a bit of an exception. Unlike in Britain and in Germany, Europe featured prominently in the French campaign – either as an object of celebration (Emmanuel Macron’s take) or as a source of all evil (Marine Le Pen’s line). But I’d argue that one of the many reasons Macron won is that he tapped into a typical French appetite to see Europe as a framework in which French “grandeur” can – and must – deploy itself. He equated Europe with a new form of French patriotism, if not hubris.".
  3. How Was Your Day?

    You've reminded me of a childhood treat there. My grandparents lived in Sheffield. On visits, we'd be taken out to the Peaks to scramble about on the rocks - and then the big treat was toasted cheese and onion sandwiches at the Sir William pub, Grindleford. Grindleford is clearly the culinary capital of the North.
  4. How Was Your Day?

    For a few days, I'm sure your head will be spinning with all the new people, new places, social events, registration procedures....and that's before you've had a drink. It'll all soon be the "new normal", though - and a great opportunity, whether your priorities are to study, to socialise, to do new stuff or just to live a more independent life. Have fun! Just don't bare your arse in the uni bar....bear that in mind, son!
  5. Worst job you ever had

    We need to put a lid on this before it all goes up in smoke.
  6. Worst job you ever had

    But a bit harder to get them to cough up his commission payment....
  7. Happy Birthday Filbert Fox

    What we need is more of this....
  8. Happy Birthday Filbert Fox

    I'm worried about the quality of the care home they've put Basil Brush in. He doesn't look good.
  9. Strangely enough, that shows just how unlucky you have to be to get caught up in such an attack - a good reason not to allow these tosspots to terrorise us. You were a lot closer than most to getting caught up in this one, but still quite a long way off. There will have been, what, more than 10 million people in London today, the vast majority nowhere near being affected. A few thousand will have been around Victoria or whatever the target was. A few hundred on trains near the explosion. A few dozen on that particular train. Terrorists mainly do this stuff to create fear - and we must deny them that achievement. I started thinking in terms of such odds recently after coming close to getting caught up in a horrible incident a couple of months back. I was walking home across Victoria Park, Leicester, at about 11.30 pm, heard a male voice shouting raucously across the park, which put me on my guard. but I saw and heard nothing more. The next day, I heard that a young woman was in a coma after suffering a life-threatening attack in the precise place from which I'd heard the noise and about 10 minutes after I'd walked through. I contacted the police but didn't have any useful information for them - and the voice that I heard shouting might well have been some other innocent bloke larking about. Last I heard, a teenager had been charged with attempted murder and rape - and the woman was out of a coma but still recovering from serious injuries...... I was exceptionally close to that horrible incident, yet still so far away from it for my testimony to be of no relevance.
  10. It was all a terribly unfortunate accident. He'd been to the Chelsea Flower Show to buy a bucket of organic compost for his allotment. Coming home to Islington on the Tube, a few droplets of his beard lotion dripped into the bag and reacted with the compost. In the combustible atmosphere of gaseous emissions from commuter armpits, the outcome was sadly inevitable.
  11. Politics Thread (encompassing Brexit) - 21 June 2017 onwards

    The EU should certainly increase its democratic accountability so that the public feel that they have more of a connection and a say in EU policies. That's easier said than done in an organisation encompassing 28 nations and 510m people (for now!) - but it needs to happen, even assuming the UK leaves. Despite misgivings about the EU's flaws, the underlying reason why I'm pro-EU is the power of big capital and big finance. That means that the public needs a sufficiently strong political institution to protect our interests against the overweening power of globally mobile capital - and a medium-sized nation state is no longer big enough. Post-Brexit, if big capital and big finance are not extracting as much profit out of the UK as they could elsewhere, they'll eventually go elsewhere, with potentially devastating effects on the British economy, living standards and social fabric. Out of self-preservation, any future EU trade deal will have to be less beneficial to the UK - with tariff and non-tariff barriers to trade and some loss of cooperation, reducing UK profitability for big capital and big finance. To avoid seeing investment dry up and corporations drift abroad, we'll need something else to attract them. Maybe we'll rapidly innovate and develop new areas of expertise or will achieve a sudden increase in productivity. We certainly won't do it by "cutting EU red tape" as we're going to be creating a massive amount of extra red tape, both internally (customs procedures etc) and for trade with the EU. At the moment there are very few economic sectors in which we are global leaders (and we're about to do serious damage to one of them - finance). Maybe, as the Brexiteers hope, we'll do great new deals with the USA, Japan, India, China or whoever - better deals than the EU can do. But why would those countries offer a better deal to a struggling, rather isolated nation state/market of 65m people than it would to a continental bloc/market of 440m people, one with a lot more products/expertise that they want? Post-Brexit, once new UK-EU trade arrangements are in place with tariff and non-tariff barriers making trade less profitable and domestic demand stagnating, there is one obvious and immediate way of protecting the profitability of big corporations and financiers investing in the UK - and it's one that Theresa May has already floated. It's the low-tax, low-regulation Britain option. There'd be no need to suddenly improve productivity or innovation. We could slash corporate tax and have a bonfire of regulations "hindering business" (more easily done with Henry VIII powers). Of course, to avoid mushrooming public-sector debt that would need to be counter-balanced by large increases in personal taxation and/or further large cuts in public spending, with obvious consequences for living standards and social harmony. The obvious post-Brexit economic model for the UK is one based on low pay, a shift in tax from capital to people, cut-price "employment safety", more "flexible" working hours/terms to cut labour costs, the elimination of environmental regulations etc. Basically, the most obvious future strategy for the UK (possibly the only one in the short-term) is for the UK to shaft its own people so as to undercut costs across the Channel in order to protect corporate profitability and keep the big global corporations and financiers sweet. Maybe something better will turn up during negotiations or after Brexit but, if not, that presages a truly grim future for our nation - one that could predominate for the rest of my life and half my daughter's. That doesn't feel good at all. Still, at least I've got my Irish/EU passport through now, so my options remain open if the shit does hit the fan.... .
  12. Unpopular Opinions You Hold

    Imagine how @SouthStandUpperTier and @stripeyfox are going to feel when they realise they sit next to one another..... Hang on! I've just realised that South Stand Upper is the upper half of the Kop, where I sit. I'm not a mouth-breathing inbred.....
  13. Politics Thread (encompassing Brexit) - 21 June 2017 onwards

    Let's be honest, however well Westminster had scrutinised legislation about the EU, neither of you would have been happy about the UK agreeing to powers being pooled at EU level, would you? You're Eurosceptics so I presume you believe that democracy should be concentrated at the national (and local) level, and are hostile to such powers being exercised at EU level, however well scrutinised? Or would you be happy for some powers to be exercised at EU level if there was better democratic control, @MattP? With all this talk of "bleating" and "Henry VIII Crap", I get the impression that @Foxin_mad isn't bothered about democracy at all, but would be happy for the UK to be run by an elected dictator, provided he was British. I wouldn't be happy with Labour exercising Henry VIII powers either. I'd expect the Tories to use such undemocratic powers to do even more things that I hated, but Corbyn with near-unlimited powers doesn't appeal either. It does make me laugh that so much humbug was talked about "our parliament" taking back "democratic control", yet some Brexiters (and I appreciate that it's only some) clearly don't give a shit about democracy, only about nation. As for UK integration into the EU being mostly down to Labour..... You can blame Blair for the scale of immigration from Eastern Europe and Brown for the Lisbon Treaty (as well as crediting him for maintaining Major's policy of staying out of the Euro). But.... - It was a Tory PM (Heath) who first took us into the Common Market - It was a Tory PM (Thatcher) who played a crucial role in setting up the Single Market: http://ukandeu.ac.uk/margaret-thatcher-the-critical-architect-of-european-integration/ - It was a Tory PM (Major) who made EU enlargement to the East a political priority and who signed the Maastricht Treaty, making EU political integration much deeper.
  14. Politics Thread (encompassing Brexit) - 21 June 2017 onwards

    I suspect he's talking sense, as usual. I think the only way that we'd end up staying in the EU now is if a large proportion of the public turned strongly against Brexit very quickly - and there's no sign of that happening. There might be a late switch against Brexit in a year's time if it becomes clear that we're doing ourselves massive damage. But that will be too late to reverse the process, surely? Plus, the EU would be unlikely to accept such a late volte-face without demanding a heavy price, which would further antagonise British Eurosceptic opinion. Surely, the main battlegrounds are now: Soft v. Hard, Tranisition v. Cliff-Edge & Democratic v. Henry VIII, not Remain v. Leave? I still think Brexit will prove to be something between a very bad idea and an utter disaster that damages the nation for decades ahead. But the focus has to be on ensuring that it is only the former and not the latter.
  15. Unpopular Opinions You Hold

    Have you identified your ideal job - Manager of a village betting shop? "Matt's Beautiful Betting Shop" - free glass of wine (white, not red) for every punter. Just a few house rules: - No piped rap/grime music - No admittance for stinky potheads - No bets on Ndidi - Separate entrances for different races, genders and sexualities () - Leave your mobiles at the door