Bats and all things Hallow

You know its Halloween as I write this and that pagan festival although in principal does not bother me, the behaviour it spawns does. Lots of children and some of them too old to be taking part have the right to knock on the door and expect a bucket full of sugary delights. All this without offering anything in return. I mean dressing up as a witch or a ghoul is not entertainment to me, I can dress the cat up like that and have way more fun.
Then there is the threat of something bad happening if their demands are not met. One’s car or house stands to be egged if all their demands are not fulfilled. No, I think the guy that came up with the idea of coating onions in toffee to disguise them as toffee apples was on the right track in my opinion.
I have to blame our American cousins for this outrage as they took what was a sensible little celebration and blew it up out of all proportions. You see we had it nailed, a couple of skeletons or a witch hung up as a form of decoration and maybe a couple of extra horror movies on the television. Not an egging in sight. No, they had to take it and ruin it by making it a commercial farce and the UK quickly followed thinking it was missing out. Personally, I think it was the confectionery manufacturers behind it all as they had the most to gain.
While we are on the topic, why do bats get such a bad press? True the vampire bat is a bit of a bastard. Crawling along the floor towards victims when you have a perfectly good pair of wings is not a good start. Plus, it is by far the ugliest of the 1300 species. But many of the others are like little fury bundles of cuddly things, and the fruit bat looks like a fox with wings which although in description terms alone should ruin any chicken’s night is actually as the name suggests a fruit eater. No good telling chickens that as they simple do not have the IQ to understand.
No bats are essential as they can eat their own body weight in insects every night and many of them pollinate fruits and flowers. Here is another myth, bats do not get tangled in your hair ever! They have the best sonar radar system around and can navigate perfectly well in a room criss-crossed with wires. There are no recorded case of bats being too drunk to use their sonar radar less than perfectly.
So, my guess is Hollywood and Bram Stoker are the source of bat related myths.
Toodle pip for now.

Andy

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Why I Think Mother Teresa Should Not Be Made a Saint

Surely even the most die- hard Catholic must cringe at the beautification of Mother Teresa? I do not hold the belief of the late Christphor Hitchens who thought of her as almost evil because I believe she was just a pawn or a puppet and others pulled the string. That said she did create a hell on earth for many. Her statement to a Calcutta population that aids was evil but condoms were worse must have condemned thousands of babies to a life of poverty and depravation. The misuse of funds and the awful state of some of the hospitals that were made in her name and funded by millions raised by her should both be investigated. There is a massive hole where those millions went and no one can explain what happened to the money and it was obvious the hospitals never received it. Once again, I think she was just a pawn.

I think however it is the miracle itself which is most embarrassing. A Bengali woman named Monica Besra claims that a beam of light emerged from a picture of MT, which she happened to have in her home, and relieved her of a cancerous tumor. Her physician, Dr. Ranjan Mustafi, says that she didn’t have a cancerous tumor in the first place and that the tubercular cyst she did have was cured by a course of prescription medicine. Nothing here makes sense and just points to how truth or proof is not important to many people, if blind faith and hope are all you need then it makes it very easy to believe any kind of fabrication. Let us also not forget that she herself lost her faith in the last year of her life.

Andy Beveridge

 

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Leaving the European Union Caused So Much Hate

It amazes me the hate and controversy raised by the vote to stay in the European Union or leave. Where does all this putrid and vile behaviour really stem from? In my opinion, it has been born from the scare mongering tactics that were constantly used by both sides in the run up and throughout their campaigns. Very few real facts came out and I think that was because even the politcians did not fully understand the future themselves.

So most people based their vote on a bed of lies that was designed to scare them and it appears to have worked because once you introduce fear it quickly overtakes logic in my eyes. Families fall out with each and other friends turn against one another and for what? A journey into the unknown? Surely this is the time when we embrace each other and walk forward into an unpredictable future but with a united front.

Look at some of the lies. Immigration out of control. Well immigration is a problem to an already overcrowded island but coming out of the Union does not mean that future elected governments will instantly solve this problem. Plus, we should encourage new skills into the country and perhaps the solution lays with a more controlled kind of immigration policy where young men are not instantly allowed in from war torn countries but women and children are in certain numbers for a period of time until it is safe for instance. Perhaps more people should be vetted and checked before entry but leaving the Union does not put any of that right.

Nobody will deal with us and we will lose out on trade deals. Well that one got put to bed fairly quickly as countries quickly put their hands up knowing that they could now create lucrative free trade deals. Even the European Union does not want to lose out on this and we have much to offer in the way of trading. India, Pakistan, Canada, USA, China to name just a few will be open to create new trade deals which would have been impossible while in Europe. That is one argument from both sides that was little more than scaremongering. There were many more as I am sure you are aware of.
The fact that most of us do not really know what the consequences are of leaving makes it even more absurd to spread hate in the way it has happened. I think the one thing for certain is that no matter what happens with our economy future governments will blame us leaving for the unpopular policies they bring in and that would have happened either way.
I live in Europe and a lot of people are panicking over what will happen to ex pats, well nothing really. I mean we are not all going to get thrown out of the various countries we live are we. Here in Spain the economy would simply crash if we all left and I am pretty certain that would be the same in other European countries. We have to remember that people lived abroad before we joined the Union but I get that it is a lot easier to move around right now. What will happen is people will have to become legal which of course they should be anyway and I am sure there will be a few euros added to the various forms that we fill in.
All in all, once the dust has settled life will go on pretty much as before and it surely is not worth falling out over and even more so if you are one of those that did not really know what you were voting for.
I will add one more thing, as it stands now we are not out of the Union as it takes a while to sort these exits out and of course it was only a referendum which carries no legal standing. That said I don’t think the result will change now.
Onwards and upwards to a bigger and brighter future and I would have said that whatever the result turned out to be.

Andy Beveridge

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The Loss of the Greatest Showman on Earth

Posted on June 6, 2016

Ali recently passed away and the self-proclaimed greatest leaves a gap in showmanship that is likely never to be filled. In truth, he left us a long time ago as Parkinsons disease had already stolen the speed of mind and body which entertained us for so long.

I personally do not think he was the greatest boxer of all time but he was involved in some great fights especially in the 70’s when Foreman and Frazier were challengers. Ali was never the biggest puncher but was extremely mobile and had incredible fast hands. It has to be noted that he was involved in some fights at his peak that just take your breath away when watched even now. He also took on a lot of men much smaller than himself and got pushed the distance which back then was 15 rounds. He lost a number of times but also bounced back. It is also hard to forget the punch that never was that seemingly knocked Sonny Liston out. Clearly it did not land and was a fixed fight but I suspect the Mafia may have had a hand in that and perhaps we should not blame the boxers themselves.

It is not inside the ring that I criticise Ali as he was one of the best in his era but outside with his views is a different matter. Some of those views also belonged to a different era and coming from his background it is easy to see where they came from but if said today then the world would erupt with offence. What’s more if a white man said those things Ali said then there would be riots.
Ali was quoted and recorded saying that he felt homosexuality was a white man’s disease. He strongly disapproved of mixed race marriages and was heavily influenced by an extreme version of Islam which I think was called the Nation of Islam. He later left them and I assume that was maybe where his bigoted views began to change. Sentences like “If a black man sleeps with a white woman then he should be killed” would have damaged his career if said later in life.

The racist remarks and bigotry were all said back in a time when people were not so easily offended as they are today and I think it is clear he was heavily influenced by extremists and the way he saw the black people being treated back then and some anger was clearly a result of that.
Ali managed to mask a lot of his bitterness through humour and people were naturally drawn to him. He is forgiven by the masses now and he did leave in fairness a lot of that controversy behind.
There are of course other aspects of his life that could be pondered like his refusal to fight for his country and stating that “White man sending black men to fight yellow men” was not his fight. He served his sentence for that but there must have been many a soldier that felt negative about that attitude.

It just remains to be said that controversial as he was we have lost an icon. Yes, he was racist in his early days but it was a different era and it is easy to judge it from today’s standards. I hope that his family are allowed to grieve in the normal way but I sense the lawyers are already sharpening their knives in preparation for long drawn out legal battle on who gets what from his $80 million legacy.

Andy Beveridge

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Trump That Ego!

I really do not get what all this fuss is about in America at the moment. There was an election and one candidate won and the other lost. In my humble opinion both candidates were a joke right from the start, but at the end of the day you have a new president.
All these marches (Well parades really) what is that going to achieve? What difference does it make? Just because you don’t like the democratic vote does not give you the right to go and lay on the floor like a child in a tantrum.
What has made any country great has always been the people and not the elected leader and it pays to remember that. Most of the people moaning and it would have been the same no matter what the outcome, do not have first -hand knowledge about Trump. From what I can see and my knowledge too only comes from the media, points to him being an ego fuelled business man who knows how to win.
That ego might well be the point here as it needs feeding and Trump needs to be successful because of it. He can’t be bought that is for sure and so success and possibly a second term would feed that ego well. That could well be to the benefit of the American people.
The media paint a pretty bad picture of him morally wise and if only half of it is true then he would not be the kind of person I would want at my table but corruption and low moral standards fits in well previous holders of this title. However, his morals do not make him bad at his job. You employ someone to do a job it is not necessary that you are required to like them as well.
Clinton herself had plenty of corrupt moments and I am sure we would have seen the same bleating and moaning if she had got in but she didn’t so buckle down for the ride.
The most sensible thing people can do is to get behind him and wish him the best. If you were on an aeroplane and you happened to dislike the pilot you would still wish him the safest journey possible, well Trump leads your country right now and you are part of that journey.
If Trump makes a mess of things, then everyone opposed to him can say we knew it would happen but until then you are only guessing. I am not a fan of his but I have a sneaking feeling that he might do better than people think.
The media is dividing you as a nation and its not Trump or Clinton that is doing it. Most of you do not know these people with any first- hand knowledge any better than I do. You gain your opinions and understanding from a media that will be heavily leaning towards political views it supports. This mass control is painful to watch.
America is a great nation and it is great because of the people not its leaders whomever they are. Once the media divides you it creates pits of festering hate and frustration that spills into the very fabric of society. This does no good to yours or anyone else’s cause or beliefs.
As for the voting system, well if you disagree with the fairness of that, it would seem to me that might well be a reason to push for change. That said, would you have been happy with it if it was your chosen candidate that won? Have you been happy with it in the past?
People need to come together and dividing a nation because of a political power is just weakening no matter what your view or stand point. You can’t change it by violence or spitting hate as that just breeds more and allows those that want carnage to slip in under the radar and add their bit.
Trump may well go on to be the worst President ever, I can’t and nor can you know that at this stage. Everything we say will be heavily influenced by a media that is feeding off the hysteria it has created. Unless we sit with him one day we can’t possibly know his real intentions, second guessing or jumping on the next doom laden story will not help the common man or even back up your own views.
He got in instead of a corrupt lawyer, so on a personal level I think both candidates were about as poor as you could get and viewing from a distance it has all the hallmarks of a giant game show, and just like a game show it’s the media running it.
Pull together and not apart, you can’t change a single thing no matter what your views by spitting venom and dividing.

Andy Beveridge

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