Monday, 15 January 2007

"AH DUNNO!" - Monday 15th

anticant writes:

Achtung! Important changes are pending in the burrow. WATCH THIS SPACE!

the burrow beadle writes:

anticant is unable to take a Sunday afternoon snooze without you lot running amok - let alone the reported orgy of banana unzipping at Big Pike's. Wiping off the graffiti in the Snug is driving the Beadle round the bend. A return to decorum is overdue.

By Order


zola said...

Good Morning my dear Anticant.
Did you sleep well?
How is Ben?
If you only had a Bill and a Little Weed you would sleep much better.

I can send you the Bill.
The "Little Weed"? - Try Beadle.

from the lonely long distance blogger

zola said...

Well Anticant people are still asleep, as you said a day or so ago, washing their knickers!!! Oh you do tempt us into sin you do.

But what the hell that unzip a bananna thing was a regular ad on UK TV and the likes was it not?
That bananna shot from Becks was often on target was it not?
I kept to the thread did I not?

I thought it was YOU that ranted and raved against Whitehouse and I thought that you knew something about football.

Feel like I am sitting on a cactus i do.
There is no sin that I cannot imagine myself being involved in.

zola said...

Even from the bottom of the class I knew that you were the Beadle of the Parish.
Because I and so many others have been there already.
Shame really because I read your stuff.
K-c-Ra, whatever .....

Szwagier said...

May I just say here, that I'm sorry I shan't be taking part in your arena. I have absolutely no intention of giving Google any mroe information about me than they already have.

anticant said...

Zola, I know nothing about football, and care less. Or cricket. Each one of these team games looks exactly like all the rest to me. Don't mind watching a bit of tennis or snooker now and then, though.

Szwagier, I'm very sorry we won't have the benefit of your thoughts in my arena. I'm not sure what information about you Google would glean if you visited, but I hope you will keep an eye on what's going on there, and if you want me to include a comment of yours on your behalf under my name just put it here on the daily burrow "Ah Dunno!" thread.

Szwagier said...

Why, thank you very much. Now that's what I call service :o)

It's not the visiting - it's that I have to register on Google to comment, and I'm not willing to do that. Google collect an awful lot of information about internet users, and, as they shopwed with China, they're perfectly willing to do deals with governments relating to information. So I'd rather they knew as little about me as possible. I'm not paranoid, just paranoid enough.

anticant said...

Oh well - I have a favourite poster on my wall which shows two sweet little kittens peeping out of a drawer saying "We're not paranoid - we just don't trust anyone!"

anticant said...

Szwagier: surely you have to have a Google account to post here? What's the difference between posting on my two sites so far as you are concerned?

Szwagier said...

No, I don't. This one allows anonymous comments, or I can use my nick and website, as I do.

I don't know, but I imagine the moderation is the reason for that.

By the way, I notice there's been a slip on the Arena. Nell mistakenly used another name which may, or may not, be her real one. I wonder if it might not be a good idea to change that...

anticant said...

I could only do that if she asked me to herself. She could put a comment on here.

Nell said...

Ah - I was just trying to find a way to ask for the name to be changed, and it seems that Szwagier has also spotted the error. I sent an email to Anticant earlier, but it seems this is the place to put in the request...

Just by way of explanation - busy day, multitasking all round, and I foolishly used a wrong login to post a comment in the Arena. And I wouldn't want to be be confused with anyone else.

Boldscot. said...

Swag got it exactly right about Google.
I too almost got caught with posting under my real name on Zola's - because I had forgotten to sign out of Gmail and Google blogger chooses the default. Nearly had a canary when I saw what had happened.
Grumpy asks, roughly, 'so what?'.
Well bearing in mind that Google was set up with money from 'Sequoia 'which is a CIA front company, there is plenty of reason to keep yourself as insulated as possible.
Google was set up, partly, to allow the Americans control of the information on the net.
If you want to see what it is about you must look at 'Echelon'. More properly, you should firstly have a look at the 'Inslaw' case where 'Promis' software was stolen by associates of the elder Bush and then punted to the security services of a number of countries - including Iraq.
You may well say, 'surely they wouldn't do nasty things with the information they collect'?.
Wouldn't they just.

anticant said...

Nell: I've just sent you an e-mail in reply to yours.

boldscot & szwagier: I detect more than a whiff of paranoia gulch in your remarks. Even if all that you say is true, what possible personal ill-effects are we likely to suffer from participating in some slightly more adult discussion on my new site?

Please feel free to continue using the burrow as an infants' playpen if you so desire, but I am finding it increasingly wearisome, which is why I have gone to the bother of moving the "issues" threads over to the arena.

If you look at Yellow Duck's very pertinent comments on there, you might understand better what I mean. It really is more sensible to have at least some agreed ground rules. As I've said to Frank Fisher, whether or not you admit there are any rules, there always ARE unacknowledged ones. Am I being unreasonable in saying how I prefer to operate? These are my sites, after all.

As someone who worked for many years in the public eye on a topic which in those days was regarded with a deep disfavour unimagineable today, I was well aware that I was almost certainly under security service surveillance for a good many years. My response was to treat the telephone, the post, and other forms of communication as public address systems - which is what they are - and not to disclose confidential information through them. You may say that I was being as naive as the folk who say "if you've nothing to hide, you've nothing to fear", but I don't think so.

Szwagier said...

As I've already said, it's not your site that's the problem. It's the fact that your site is hosted, owned, and run by Google.

As is this one. The difference is that here I can be anybody, there I can only be who Google wants me to be, and quite frankly I'm not interested in who they want me to be. For the same reason I don't want an ID card.

Unlike, public telephones and the post, the internet is as public as you want to make it. It's perfectly easy to make it extremely difficult to be traced... if you want to.

zola said...

Shame but : I suspect that Anticant has already made up his mind before any trial or comment or jury.
Shame that.
I have, however seen this before.
A Judge rarely listens and discusses.

anticant said...

Szwagier: Why are you so anxious not to be traced? Merely on principle, or for personal reasons? None of my business, of course, but I'm naturally curious.

You are welcome to your suspicions, Zola, but as you have already tried and condemned me over on your site without even notifying me of the hearing, I can only retort "tu quoque".

Boldscot said...

It is very easy to say 'paranoia gulch'.
Except, on email you said exactly the same thing to me - you put the question. I answered.
Yet, you did not reply. Why?.
I asked if you could explain how a steel framed building could fall down - for the first time - in a fire. No reply.
Your burrow, your rules.
What are the rules?.
Smut is ok for the host - (refs if you want).
It is not hypocricy even though it has been pointed out - you are the host. It is your choice. Ours too.
We understand.
However, when we have the masque of 'serious study' and it does not fit then it is noticed. And insulting.
Those of us who 'have already died before' have no fear of bringing up the questions others would leave un-asked.
The cousin test is this : 'did you really ask the questions' rather than 'did you wash the ostrich knickers'.
You want the burrow to be serious then be consistent.

Merkin said...

This week the NuLabs et al passed the following, without as much as a nod to Parliament.
'Anyone buying a ticket to The States and giving an email address, also gives the right to America to have access to ANY mail to/from that address.'
Paranoia Gulch?.
The fights you fought so well over the past 30 years are no longer the ones that are relevant.
You paved the way - but surely not for the neocons?. Is that what Libertarianism is?.
Paranoia Gulch?.
Both the Swagman and myself swim very well in the technopond that is the NOW. To say that we are, in some way, deluded is extremely insulting.
You saw yourself, in accusing me of something of which I was not guilty, how easy it is to make use of Internet info.
Into this Century before you cast a stone.
Paranoia Gulch?. I think not.

anticant said...

Oh dear! Another one chooses to feel "insulted". Aren't the jesters getting a tad heavy?

I didn't answer the e-mail question about the Twin Towers because I don't know and - to be honest - don't care all that terribly much. Any more than I really care whether Diana died in an accident or was murdered. The point is, these things happened and we are all living with the consequences.

I never said you and Szwagi are 'deluded'. I asked why your distrust of Google mattered so much to you personally, and you didn't answer - as you have every right not to. I mistrust most agencies I have to deal with these days - not least my bank. What can I do about it? Keep my cash in a stocking under the bed?

I'm sorry, but if you feel I am 'insulting' you, and then patronisingly inform me how obsolete I am and how much more Internet-savvy you 21st century younger guys are, all I can say is that I'm sure there are plenty of more rewarding sites than mine for you to disport yourselves on.

OK, the neocons are vile scumbags. So is NuLab. So are religious fanatics of all stripes. That's the real world we are living in. Who is out of touch?

Szwagier said...

It's the principle of the thing. I'm perfectly easily traceable by anybody who wants to find me. I didn't ask my government to keep tabs on me, in fact I have several times, by signing petitions and the like, asked them not to. They persist nevertheless, and so I will persist in making it that little bit more difficult for them.

Businesses like Google do not even have the decency to ask, they simply automatically collect information about what I search for, who I write emails to, what those emails are about, and so on. I don't even need to be registered with Google. They collect this information if I even send an email to someone who has a gmail address. I find that disturbing.

I have no intention of being 'targeted' by corporations if I can possibly avoid it. I'm not interested in what they claim to be offering me, and I have no desire for them to pass on whatever information they have to any third-party who offers them enough money.

I'm not insulted, by the way. If you want to find out who I am, the 'about' page on my site will tell you :o)

anticant said...

I too am against it on principle, and I don't like it either. But it's a fact of life nowadays and we have either to put up with it or else to curtail our legitimate activities to an unreasonable degree.

You can't even buy an electric kettle these days without finding a questionnaire they ask you to return with all sorts of impertinent and intrusive details. Those just go straight into the WPB. As for the big corporations, they are not interested in us as individuals - only in honing our market potential. That doesn't scare me, but it irritates me.

My worry about all this governmental and non-governmental collection and swapping of superfluous data is not conspiracy but cock-up. Many of the relatively junior people administering all this mass of - in fact useless - material are likely to be both incompetent and lazy. Once a piece of "information" about you - true or not - gets onto a file, it stays there for ever and goes round and round until it eventually ends up doing mischief.

The security services are probably the worst offenders. Many years ago a friend of mine, Martin Ennals, who was General Secretary of the NCCL [now Liberty], was observing a demo in Trafalgar Square and got chatting with a plain-clothes bloke who after a while said "It's always nice to put a face to a file". He then said: "Would you mind telling me why you used to travel to Paris so frequently last year? I'ts always puzzled us." Martin replied that the answer was very simple - his mother-in-law, who lived in Paris, had been very ill and he and his wife went over to see her as often as they could.

And so it goes. Innocent until proved guilty my [Michael] Foot.

Szwagier said...

I had a similar experience in the mid-80s when I was a student and, briefly, a member of the Greens. I can't remember how it came about, but I got chatting to a guy on a demo who claimed to be a member of the Service. I asked him if there would be a file on me and he said "I'm sure there is".

Cock-up is certainly the most prevalent danger. Especially these days when anyone who mentions the word 'bomb' in an email is likely to set off warning signals from here to Washington.

I realise that the corporations are only interested in me as a consumer, but I've also seen that they are willing to pass their information to others who might have different reasons for being interested, and so I try to limit how much information they get.

It's no different, in my mind, from making sure my PC is protected from script-kiddies and would-be hackers while browsing the internet. It won't, can't stop the professionals, but it discourages the casual, the incompetent, and the robots. It's the best I can hope for.

anticant said...

We just have to live with it, distasteful though it is. I'm quite sure there is a thick file on me, going way back, and my recent forays on blogging sites have doubtless confirmed the worst suspicions of anyone that's misguided enough to monitor me.

I really couldn't care less about them, Google, or anyone else so stupid as to think me important enough to bother about.

Szwagier said...

I've just re-read my penultimate sentence in my last comment and realised that it could be interpreted as snobbishness!

"I'm not going to have my PC hacked by any old Joe Bloggs. Oh no, I only want to be hacked by professionals."

A little more honest than I wanted to be, perhaps :o)