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Romiley, 12:41½ on 2002/08/31

Romiley Blacked Out

The monitor screens went blank, the comforting whirr of computers ceased. All unsaved work was lost. At 12:41 on the last day of the month, the power went off in Romiley for 61 minutes and everyone was deafened by the chorus of burglar alarms. And what happened when the citizens tried to ring the emergency number of Energi (stupid name) for information? They were told that the number 'wasn't taking any more calls'. So they were a lot of help.

Parking Loophole

Parking tickets issued by hatless traffic wardens are invalid, shock horror! Wardens must be 'in full uniform' when they issue tickets to avoid the risk of people going round handing out bogus tickets. A reckless parker in London was told about this loophole by another warden with an unusually helpful disposition, and he's now claiming that his ticket was issued by a hatless warden in an attempt to 'beat the rap'.
   "The best sabotage comes from within."

The Toothy MuggerBrown by name but not by teeth!

The Chancellor, or perhaps our readers would know him better as The Mugger, has taken a break from inventing New Labour Stealth Taxes to have his teeth done. No longer dingy brown, they now gleam like an American film extra's gnashers.
   So does this mean he's actively plotting to take over the Vice-Prez's job? Even if everyone, but everyone, in the country hates him? If he goes on to get cosmetic nails on his bitten fingers so people will shake his hand, watch out!

Speed Cameras Kill?

According to a transport consultant at Leeds University, motorists drive erratically at speed cameras. They jam on their brakes when they see them, like the Porsche driver who was clocked at 94 mph when 500 metres from a speedcam, then they jam their boot on the accelerator when the 'danger' is out of range. And this erratic driving leads to more accidents - double the pre-camera rate, in some cases.
   On the other hand, the Department of Transport reckons that speedcams reduce the numbers killed and injured by 47%.
   [The DoT -- wasn't that where Liar Byers hung out for a while? So much for their credentials as far as telling the truth is concerned.]

The Vice-Prez by Steve Bell
The Vice-Prez
after Steve Bell

Sorry, Mr. Prez, Our Toys Are Broke!

Reasons for not getting involved in the Saddam Hussein of all wars No. 2: Our soldiers aren't fit enough, our sailors get seasick and the RAF is no better off. Our tanks don't work in desert conditions. Likewise, our helicopters. Our warships crash into well charted rocks in full daylight. Our boots melt in the heat. Our old-fashioned radios can't take the desert, the new ones won't be delivered until 2004 (not that there's any guarantee they'll do any better) and there's no mobile phone network in Iraq. And the Enfield SA-80 rifle doesn't work, it never has worked and it never will work.
   RECAP: Excuse No. 1 was that Vice-Prez Blair was too busy enjoying one of his freebie holidays to play.

Nominal Adjustments

The War Against Terrorism has been called off because, as Keith Waterhouse pointed out, you can't go to war against an abstract noun. No, we're having a War Against Freedom Fighters now, as that's what most terrorists call themselves.
   Talking about freedom fighters, rumours of a massacre emerged after Israel sent theirs in to Jenin. And when the UN asked for access to the crime scene, the Israelis, confident of American backing, told them to get stuffed. So the UN, being the UN and having to justify its existence, cobbled together a report saying they couldn't find any evidence of a massacre and the cynical Israelis are saying it proved they did nothing wrong.
   This is where Slobo Milosevic and his mates went wrong. It they'd kept the UN out of their crime scenes until they'd made the evidence of atrocities go away, they wouldn't be making money for the lawyers in the Hague right now.

EU Double Think

Talking about 'making money for the lawyers', the War Against Motorists took an interesting twist when the EU proposed that the motorist should be declared the guilty party in all shunts involving cyclists and pedestrians whether or not it was the motorist's fault!!! In view of the obvious breach of motorists' human rights, it seems clear that the ambulance-chasing fraternity has been bunging the EU's legislators, knowing that they can clean up not only on claims for bogus injuries from drunken or crazed bikers and pedestrians, but also on appeals against conviction by motorists citing abuse of their human rights.
No wonder the EU has people like Neil Kinnock in charge of its internal policing.

Is he really the World's Richest Man?

Israel's War On Truth Rolls On

Palestinian Prez Yosser Arafat is "the richest man on the planet" according to Israeli Intelligence. He has a bank balance equivalent to the combined wealth of several medium-size countries in off-shore accounts, which he set up for his retirement.
   General Veez, the official head of the Israeli government's Black Propaganda Ministry, also provided several recent pictures of Mr. Arafat with Elvis in a burger bar and "long lens" shots of the Prez in discussion with aliens in the desert as further proof of his dodginess. So now we know!

No War In Rhodesia After Bung For Vice-Prez?

That nice Prez Bush has come out (finally) against the Dictator M'Ugabe and put him on the list for a 'regime change'. Not a word from our own dear Vice-Prez, though. Could this mean that New Labour has been bunged by the ZGPC (Zimbabwean Governing Party of Criminals)? Silence is certainly very odd from someone who thinks he's Action Man when it comes to getting the rest of the world organized.

The New EU Flag
The New EU Flag - the Triple Cross

Another EU Whistle-Blower -- History Repeats Itself

Marta Andreasen, the former chief accountant of the European Commission, has been suspended from duty by the Welsh windbag. Why? Because she was exposing massive fraud at Europe's rotten heart and mismanagement by corrupt and/or inept officials. This is exactly what happened to a previous auditor, Paul van Buitenen, 4 months before every member of the European Commission was obliged to resign.
   The EU has a budget of £63billion. Latest estimates show that 11.5% is stolen or 'lost' in various scams. That's £7,245,000,000 of eurotaxpayers' money ripped off this year. So what does the Commission VP in charge of cleaning up Brussels do about it? He tries to bully Ms Andreasen into silence. It certainly makes you wonder what Kinnock hopes to gain from it.
   In fact, it's high time the bludger let the door hit his ass!


   Carry On Junketing

The Vice-Prez decided to "downsize" the gang going to the international ecology junket in Johannesburg after press criticism. The obvious dead wood was old Two-Jags (J. Prescott, deputy prime minister Ed.), who has no environmental responsibilities as a minister and whose policies are considered a major threat to the environment. But Environment Minister Michael Meacher got the chop instead. Rumour has it that he dared to call the Sarth Efrican mini-break a total waste of time, effort and money, and upset the freebie-guzzling Vice-Prez.
   Meacher -- is he 12-Homes? Or is that someone else?
Stop Press! 1. An embarrassed Vice-Prez has been shamed into letting Meacher have his junket at the [It's Gonna Cost The] Earth Summit after all.
2. The Beeb has cut its junketing party from 70 to 50 bodies after serious questions about what all these people are going to do.
3. Traditional wellie-boot dancers to greet the junketeers? Which comedian dreamed that one up!

Greenpeace Shrunk Our Glaciers!

Photographs released by Greenpeace show that during the time this organization has been in existence, whole glaciers have totally disappeared! Indeed, there is a compelling relationship between the growth of this band of allegedly ecology-minded individuals and the loss of other vital resources, such as our ozone layer, fish stocks and rain forests.
   Save our planet, ban Greenpeace!

   Chinese Smog Floods Europe   

A vast, dirty-brown smog cloud over the whole of China is reducing rainfall in the East -- but the rain has to land somewhere. And that somewhere is Europe. Chinese rain has swollen the river Vltava and put most of the Old City in Prague under water. In Dresden, the trains at the main station have become novelty ferries. Austria, Italy, Romania, Russia and Switzerland are also suffering -- and planning to join the Czechs and the Germans in a class action for compensation against China in the World Court.
   The UK has not been unaffected by this Chinese plague, but we intend to soldier on. The Deputy Prime Minister, Mr. T.W.O. Jags, announced that his plans to build 250,000 new homes in England's southern flood plains "will not be deflected".
   Doesn't it make you proud to be British?


   Another one for you, Brutus!

Prez-For-Life (since 2002/08/08) Saparmurat Niyazov of Turkmenistan (Iran & Afghanistan's northern neighbour) is on a real power trip these days. He's only renamed the months and the days of the week after the important things in his life -- like himself (the former January) and his Mom (the former April). Turkmenbashi the Great, as he likes to be known, seems to be well down the same road as a certain Roman Emperor, who renamed July after himself.
   Beware the Ides of whatever March is now, Turky Baby! And have a nice day while you've still got the chance.

The FO Is At It Again

We always knew that the Foreign Office was a den of dodginess. The activities of the bunch of spivs running the passport office in the former Rhodesia prove it yet again. They're selling passports to white farmers who are being persecuted by Pres For Life M'Ugabe at the black market rate of 1,000 Z-dollars to the pound instead of the official rate of 85 Z-dollars to the pound.
   Ethical or what, Mr. Vice-Prez?
Stop Press!Apparently, it's illegal for Prez M'Ug to evict white farmers from mortgaged farms unless the bank agrees. Not that small matters like the law are likely to slow him down when he thinks he's on a roll.

In 1992
Aerial photo, 1992
10 years on
Aerial photo, 10 years on

Vandalized Work of Art Restored (Almost)

Back in 1938, a patriotic German forest warden created a work of art near the rural village of Zernikow, which lies 60 miles north of Berlin. He planted a design of larches which contrasted from the dark-green pines around them when their leaves turned yellow-brown in the autumn or when the light-green larch blossom came out in the spring. The swastika pattern could be seen only from the air but everyone knew that it was there.
   The work of art survived World War 2 and it was ignored for 40 years by the Communist regime in East Germany. Then, three years after German reunification, the design was spotted in an aerial photograph. Three years after that, official vandals had some of the larches felled -- but others grew up to replace them.
   At the end of 2000, some small-minded, politically correct jobsworth sent in a gang of chainsaw-wielding vandals to hack down 25 of the 57 trees to break up the pattern. A dispute over land ownership on part of the property meant that only about half of the 200-by-200-foot swastika could be cut down. But that wasn't the end of the matter. A group of art-lovers with access to experimental arboricultural research decided to repair the damage.
   Their research involves creating trees with an accelerated rate of growth to remove excess carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. 'Carbon-Fixing' is viewed as a good thing ecologically as it removes one of the 'greenhouse gases' from the atmosphere while providing wood and wood products from a readily sustainable source.
   Their genetically modified larches were planted in the spring of 2001. A year and a half later, the damaged work of art has been restored to its former glory, more or less. As a bonus, the GM-modified larches have yellow leaves through a longer portion of their growth cycle and they retain their leaves, and continue growing and removing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, for longer than non-GM larches.
   The Nazis of the mid-20th Century burned books. The PC Nazis of the late 20th Century chopped down trees. But there were always lots of other copies of the burned books, and trees can be replaced. And there's not a whole hell of a lot the Nazis can do about it.


   Jobs For The Butchers

Muammar Gadaffi, Prez For Life of Libya and a veritable Saddam Hussein among the sponsors of international terrorism and those responsible for the persecution, torture and murder of Libyan dissenters, has been appointed the next chairman of the United Nations Human Rights Commission, which 'investigates' human rights abuses.
   Who says those dry old jobsworths at the UN have no sense of humour!


   Dumb and Dumber

A guy in Steinvik, Norway, stole a power mower and drove it away at its top speed of four and a half miles per hour. A whole bunch of people heard him taking 6 hours to make his 43 kilometre getaway and the police arrested him after multiple tip-offs.
   Meanwhile, a thief in Arkansas called Edward McBride (37) jumped into a river in an attempt to get away from the police. And because he refused to let go of his loot -- 66lb of stolen cameras -- he drowned.

The Real Cost of Crime

The Home Sec. and the Judiciary want to keep criminals out of gaol for some reason known only to themselves. [Maybe they should be required by law to suffer an annual burglary or mugging as a test of the strength of their convictions - Ed.] On the other hand, the think tank Civitas has used the Govt's own statistics to show that the UK's 100,000 hard-core criminals are responsible for half of all crime -- and they cost the country around £300,000 per annum each.
   Locking them up, in contrast, would cost the country a mere £37,500 a head per annum. At present, only 20K of the 100K hard-core criminals are behind bars at any one time. So all we have to do to enjoy a new, semi-crime-free golden age is to build another 150 gaols for the remaining 80K of hard-cores.
   Isn't life simple when someone uses his brain for a change?
   And maybe we ought to keep a couple of plumbing-free cells with slopping-out buckets free for no-brain judges and politicians as a reward for keeping criminals out of gaol and at liberty to prey on the people who pay their inflated wages.


   22nd August, 2002

Leni Riefenstahl
Leni Riefenstahl at 98

Leni Riefenstahl, film maker extraordinary, hit 100 on the 4th Thursday of the month. Born in Berlin, she became a dancer "as an experiment", a film actress and then a director. She is best known, or notorious, for the documentary films which she made in the 1930s.
   Her "Nuremberg Trilogy" comprised Victory of Faith, which she didn't like and which was lost during World War II, the award-winning Triumph of the Will (1934) and Day of Freedom - Our Army (1935).
   In 1936, the International Olympic Committee commissioned her to film the Berlin Olympics. Olympia (1938), her two-part epic, won international prizes and set a lasting standard for filming sports events. It was also to be the last ever film contract for the woman who rewrote the book on film camera technique, but she did manage to produce, direct, edit, script and act in her own film, The Lowlands (1954).
   After the war, she was cleared of involvement in any war crimes but the film industry didn't want to know her. So she re-invented herself first as a documentary film maker in Africa, where she charted the lives of disappearing tribes, and then, in her seventies and eighties, as a scuba diver and photographer of life in the oceans.
   Leni Reifenstahl is truly one of Nature's unstoppables!

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 back to topCreated for Romiley Anarchists' League by workers in revolt against oppression.
Sole RAL, August 2002.