I KNOW – LET’S DESTROY A COUNTRY!

January 24, 2010

 

SUPPOSE you wanted to bring a country to its knees; how would you set about it?

First you would give the financial institutions who print money complete autonomy to do with it whatever they like. You would permit them to take the money they printed and pay it to themselves – as much as they like and as often as they like – preferably while bringing their customers to their knees with over excessive charges.

To really do some serious damage you might want to get the country into debt.

Not just a little bit of debt, but a debt so enormous that there’s not enough space on your calculator screen to display the mile-long string of zeros.

You might also find some excuse for a war – and then start it. In fact, you could even run two wars at the same time. Brilliant.

Then, to produce fear and dread among the populace you would allow more Big Brother cameras per head of the population than any other country, including the states run by dictators and tyrants.

And you would try as much as possible to care of the criminal and victimise the victim.

Another good ploy would be to tie as much red tape and petty legislations – with stringent penalties – around those who try to make something of their country and their community. And, rather brilliantly, this would involve an army of little grey men in little grey suits who would be paid a fortune.

You would use paperwork to produce an uphill struggle for everything from big business to the entrepreneur and from the police to the hospitals.

To pay for all this you simply tax everything and anything that moves – or doesn’t move. Get the workers to pay income tax, then pile a variety of taxes on everything they buy! Then keep taxing. And taxing.

Add to this a sophisticated way to rob people of their savings and wipe out their pensions. Ingenious.

If you wanted to destroy a country – actually set out to intentionally bring a country to the point of utter destruction – it would take intelligent design and planning. Something like that couldn’t just happen; it would take hard work.

Yet our potty politicians have managed to get us to that point.

Makes you wonder about the loyalty and devotion of those whose hands are on the rein, does it not?

Drew McAdam

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IT’S IN THE BAG

January 17, 2010

 

WELL, that was weird.

I wandered into T.K. Max at the Almondvale Centre recently to buy a pair of salopettes – GREAT prices, I have to say. Unfortunately, I have no idea what size I am so I asked for some assistance.

The very nice young lady (VNYL) picked out a pair she though would fit. So off I toddled to the changing rooms.

As I made my way across the shop I was aware of a fair amount of giggling and pointing going on amongst the staff, but I couldn’t think what it had to do with me; I checked my flies just in case.

It wouldn’t be the first time.

On approaching the till with my purchase I could hear people being told that if they wanted a carrier bag it would cost them. However, the VNYL stepped up to the person who was serving me and said: “Don’t charge him for the bag – he’s off the telly.”

So there, you go. Somebody who watches daytime TV – and I get a free plastic carrier bag.

Now, I know that celebrities get free stuff all the time. Designer clothing, gifts of jewellery and watches, the best tables in the best restaurants and even the occasional complimentary car.

Me? I got a plastic carrier bag. It lets you know your place in the pecking order.

In all seriousness, it was very nice of her; and the girlies were all excited. And that’s a bit of great fun.

But you know what? I love my job; I really do. One recent performance was at Gleneagles Hotel where I did a twenty minute spot and was interviewed by Kaye Adams. Then I was back on stage with that brilliant impersonator Rory Bremner. From there, it was a quick drive to the STV studios for a spot on “The Hour.” Oh, and an episode of The Interrogator had gone out on The Trisha Show that morning. I was in three places at once.

What’s more, I get paid for all this! And fed. And accommodation.

I can’t remember the last time I had the Monday Morning Blues.

It’s true: find a job you love and you’ll never work again.

Believe me, I DO realise how lucky I am. So I say this: for those of you who dream of grasping your life and taking it in the direction you want, then go for it. What’s the worst that can happen?

You might find you get the occasional free carrier bag, too.

Drew McAdam


LORRY DRIVERS – YOU’VE GOTTA LOVE ‘EM

January 10, 2010

 

Where do all the boy racers go when they grow up?

What happens to them after they’ve finished tearing around in daft wee cars that sport exhaust pipes the size of dustbins, undertaking on motorways, overtaking on blind summits and generally proving that the neurons in their pea-sized brains are nowhere near fully connnected.

Where are they now – the ones that haven’t skidded into Hell sideways and on fire?

I think I know: they became lorry drivers.

In the recent snow and ice conditions these “kings of the road” come tearing up the fast lane, spraying everybody with slush and salt as they thunder off into the distance at the speed of light.

And it’s no use blasting your horn at them because the sound waves will never catch up with these idiots.

Your only chance is to see them coming behind you and prepare yourself mentally for the onslaught. Spotting them in your rear-view mirror isn’t difficult at night because they’ve taken to decorating their cabs with more coloured lights than Blackpool seafront. They resemble giant Wurlitzer jukeboxes bearing down on you.

(As a side note, I thought that by law it was only emergency vehicles that could display blue lights. Am I wrong, or are the police just turning a blind eye to that?)

Of course, when not travelling at inappropriate speeds they ride two abreast mile after mile to ensure that nobody behind them has any hope of getting past.

If you need proof of their inability to read the weather conditions, consider how the M80 was recently blocked for eight hours by a jacknifed lorry. At the same time, the M8 was also blocked – by a jacknifed lorry. The whole of central Scotland was brought to a halt; and I know because I ended up sleeping in my car at 3am on what is usually Scotland’s busiest road.

To jacknife a lorry you simply drive too fast for the conditions and then brake sharply so that the big box on the back overtakes the wee box on the front. Simple.

So, all this mayhem was caused, not by the snow and ice, but by big boy racers in trucks who think that ice is only slippery and dangerous if you’re a pedestrian or driving a wee car.

It seems that the lorry drivers’ manual states that you’ll only skid and hit something if you don’t have the pedal to the metal at all times. Their belief is that speed and momentum is the antidote to skidding.

Or perhaps they’re just thoughtless, stupid, inconsiderate and dangerous twerps who think that outlandish “look at me” lighting is cool.

Just like the boy racers, really. Only bigger.

Drew McAdam


ANOTHER GRIT GRIPE

January 2, 2010

 

Have you seen the gritters out and about?

You have? Excellent; that’s where they are supposed to be.

And according to a press release from Oor Cooncil, the main priority of keeping the local main road network clear has been achieved thanks to gritters and snow ploughs treating all 600 miles of main road four or fives times each day.

Hooray! But, hang on. You can’t argue with mathematics. By my reckoning, one gritter travelling at an average of only 25 mph for 24 hours would grit all 600 miles. To grit all the main roads four times a day would therefore take 4 vehicles.

Can you see where this is going?

In the same press release, Robert De Bold, Executive councillor for the Environment, informs us that there are 18 large gritters… So while the 4 gritters are working the main routes, where are the OTHER 14 gritters?

Not doing anything, must be the answer. It’s maths, mate.

And that’s not even bringing into play the 12 multipurpose vehicles and 30 mini tractors that our taxes paid for.

Oh, and by the council’s own figures there are 150 staff working to keep the county moving. Well, unless each of the four grittersw it takes to keep the main roads clear carries 37.5 workers; they seem to be missing in action, too.

What makes this even stranger is that I have seen the gritters out and about several times. And as one flew past me I waited for the rattle of grit hitting the side of my vehicle… nothing.

It was lit up at the front with a bank of bright lights that would fell a deer at 400 yards, and was covered in yellow flashing beacons as it sped along the A71. But it wasn’t dropping a grain of salt in its wake.

Weird.

Since then, having seen others – again with all the paraphernalia and the lights – I followed them out of curiosity. Despite the temperature being well below freezing, they were most definitely not gritting. None of them.

So, what’s going on? Are we going to be shown the tacographs from these vehicles demonstrating that they have travelled thousands of miles during the mini West Lothian Ice Age? Probably.

Well, big deal. If they are not actually spreading grit then all they are doing is burning up fuel and making the mileage look good.

Instead of doing that they could be clearing the minor routes where there are still people who have been unable to move since the freeze began.

It’s just a suggestion.

So keep a look out. The next time you can’t believe you’ve actually spotted the hazard warning beacons of a gritter coming along your road, check if it’s actually doing anything.

Or if it’s just trundling along the road to keep up appearances.

Drew McAdam