Sad Little England.

GOGWIT IS FEELING annoyed and downbeat today, this brief blog is the substance of what is getting under my skin.

I was born 10 minutes walk from the centre of Birmingham. I have never driven and my passport expired in the early 90s, I did not replace it, there seemed no need.

Fortunately I have my birth certificate.

Even so, a growing number of situations require production of valid photo ID and it is then that we encounter the true meaning of the “insolence of office” which is stressful in the extreme and which pushes me – yes, me – to the verge of losing my temper – which would be unfortunate, embarrassing and rather unpleasant.

But at least I do not have to prove, in addition, my residence status over several decades, failure to comply potentially resulting in losing employment, being detained or even being deported.

Compared to the trials being experienced by the so called “Windrush Generation” my problems seem insignificant.
They do not seem so when some functionary is required to tick boxes for documents I do not possess.

There is so much that is good about this country to be proud of and to rejoice in and celebrate.

However, the way this country has, in recent years, treated so many of its subjects of Commonwealth and New Commonwealth heritage is not among those matters for celebration. It is a matter for shame, it is a blemish and it summarises, most succinctly, where we are wrong and could do so much better.

Today, our Prime Minister apologised publicly to Commonwealth Heads of Governments for this outrageous state of affairs, until recent days UK Home Office policy. The current Home Secretary has already had to backtrack, in Parliament, on this toxic legacy from the days when the current Prime Minister was the then Home Secretary.

Fine words are, well, fine words but alone they butter few parsnips. Harm has already been done and action is required to make amends and to resolve this issue. There were fine words issued after the Manchester concert bombing.
There was an outpouring of fine words following the Grenfell Tower fire, so dreadful that one only need say “Grenfell” and everyone knows exactly what one is talking about; vanishingly few of the issues have been addressed and resolved, few of the promises have been delivered.

We often hear the call to “make a bonfire of the red tape” by which is commonly meant the checks, balances, safeguards and protocols that protect us from unscrupulous exposure to unsound and dangerous processes.

I would like to call for a bonfire of the red tape used to discriminate, deter and debar those resident in this land from living and thriving in productive and happy lives.

Gogwit.

April 2018, (c)

This is an opinion piece; it represents my views and was created as a sole enterprise.

About this GDPR you may have heard of…

debtcamel.co.uk/free-access-data-gdpr/

DIGITAL INFORMATION and the marketisation of such has become commonplace in our times. The headlines at present (Q1, 2018-19) have been dominated by Facebook, Cambridge Analytica and other data harvesting outfits.

Back in your living room and my kitchen, when the blood stops boiling and the bile is spent, take a sober look at to whom else you have freely doled out your personal information and ask the question: just what do they have on you, how much of it is current or accurate.

What do they do with it, besides sending you personalised offers and nuisance phone calls risibly wide of the mark?

Gogwit’s Blog is pleased to reproduce DebtCamel‘s useful and informative article on how to review and to challenge, have corrected or deleted, data the many organisations in your life hold about you.

Interested? Follow the link at the head of this page for the low down.

Why is the obesity rate continuing to rise in the U.S.?

Fascinating. Everything nice that one would hope to find in a well researched, referenced but readable article. A bit like Eton Mess or one of those desserts served in a metal pail with ice cream, chocolate, brownies, M&Ms and sparklers stuck in the top.
As a Brit I confess that the sentiment expressed in the opening paragraph about the ‘build’ of the average American does appear to be held as true this side of the pond.
However, I’m in no position to talk on this subject; too much ice cream.
It will take me a while to digest (no pun) and, as always, you have provided food for thought. (Sorry!)
The risk factors are pretty much universal across the developed world. It is not always explicitly stated that individuals may be exposed to multiple risk factors; also that medication prescribed for many mental health disorders themselves disorder appetite, reward and goal oriented behaviour. Pleasure to reblog on Gogwit’s Blog!

The Secular Jurist

By Robert A. Vella

There is a long-held international view of Americans as being fat, lazy, and obnoxious.  How this perception originated and evolved over time is open to speculation, but opinion polls have consistently showed a marked decline in favorability for both the U.S. and Americans since the turn of the millennium.  What initially triggered the world’s negative opinion of Americans can probably be traced back to the early 20th century when U.S. involvement in global affairs rose in ascendancy, and when the image of the nation was portrayed by powerful and overindulgent industrialists like Wall Street banker J. P. Morgan.

However, widespread obesity in the U.S. is a relatively new phenomenon.  Prior to World War II, malnutrition and disease were much bigger problems.  From the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services:

The latest statistics clearly indicate a continued rise in obesity.  From The New York Times…

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Thoughts from a retired headteacher…

I reblog this with sadness. Sadness that a headteacher should feel motivated to write in this vein; sadness that the argument of this piece is essentially true. The keyword here is, I think, sadness.

Let Our Kids Be Kids

Teachers, headteachers, parents… use your power!

“I daily thank god that I am a retired teacher and headteacher. I simply could not ask my staff to persecute children with never ending ‘tests’ that do nothing to further any child’s education or ability to make sense of the world. I simply would have refused to cooperate with the idiots charged with designing our so-called education system.

Teaching used to be a joyous profession. Happy children, staff who didn’t dread walking daily through the school gates and heads who were left to manage their schools without the constant interference of people who couldn’t do the job themselves.

I used to be described as formidable by LEA officers, advisors alike. Yes I was. Formidable in my determination to do the very best I could for the young people in my charge.

Schools used to be about opportunities for social mobility- a chance…

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Tory vice chair deletes comment saying unemployed should have vasectomies

I reblog @ThomasPride ‘s blog without further comment.

Pride's Purge

Tory Britain:

The directors responsible for the Carillion bankruptcy should get MILLIONS in pay-offs:

Carillion fat cats still earning up to £55,000 a MONTH even after quitting

The workers made redundant by the Carillion bankruptcy should get VASECTOMIES:

Tory vice chair urged jobless to stop having kids or UK would ‘drown in wasters’

Yet more Tory eugenics …

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The Letter David Gauke will not be expecting and won’t want to receive – blueannoyed

https://blueannoyed.wordpress.com/2018/01/07/the-letter-david-gauke-will-not-be-expecting-and-wont-want-to-receive/amp/?__twitter_impression=true#top

The Council plans closures of Children’s Centres and Nurseries – Have your say at the consultation meetings

An opportunity for concerned parents, professionals and Council Tax payers in Birmingham to lend their voices to the children of Birmingham.
While the Council may have sparse room for manoeuvre, they can register the displeasure and dissatisfaction of the people of Birmingham.
It is true that children cannot vote; however, the adult population can, at parish, municipal, regional and national level; and in Birmingham there was elected a council opposed, in principle, to cuts of this nature that are being enforced by a divisive and hostile UK Government.
The Education, Health and Welfare provision of the United Kingdom only work when predicated on an understanding that the economy serves society, not the other way round.

Birmingham Against The Cuts

They say:

The way that we deliver children’s centres, health visiting services and parenting support services in Birmingham is changing. Have your say on our proposals for a new service model that will bring these services together, for you, in your local area.

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