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I should perhaps clarify that by "good Conservative" I meant one who is true to the Anglican roots of conservatism: an acceptance of original sin and recognition that man is not perfectible by his own efforts and that therefore the best that can be done is to alleviate the consequences of the fallen human state. I'm not intending a slur on the character of current members of the Conservative Party in general, though I reserve the right to question their judgement. 

 

One could date the point at which the Conservative Party moved away from that original position towards what might be described as Liberal Unionism to the time of Joseph Chamberlain.

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37 minutes ago, Compound2632 said:

I should perhaps clarify that by "good Conservative" I meant one who is true to the Anglican roots of conservatism: an acceptance of original sin and recognition that man is not perfectible by his own efforts and that therefore the best that can be done is to alleviate the consequences of the fallen human state. I'm not intending a slur on the character of current members of the Conservative Party in general, though I reserve the right to question their judgement. 

 

One could date the point at which the Conservative Party moved away from that original position towards what might be described as Liberal Unionism to the time of Joseph Chamberlain.

 

Edmund Burke is somewhat of a hero of mine (and I'm someone who doesn't tend to have 'heroes'). His wisdom echoes through the years as pertinent.

 

'Pushful Joe', not so much.

 

1375342411_JosephChamberlin.jpg.7f33bc3723d3df9ee247e5300cbfff48.jpgedmund_burke.jpg.aa217c3189de7c34898f033b92f876ce.jpg 

Edited by Edwardian
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8 hours ago, Compound2632 said:

This is a Mobile Phone. Photo taken with a Camera. Remember those?

 

phone.JPG.7dc19866cdf28b06e6a738de16e202af.JPG

 

This is the phone we got my elder son when he started secondary school, so it's about nine years old. I did have a flip phone but about six years ago it slipped out of my pocket into a ceramic bowl of water (let's not go into that). Fortunately the SIM card survived. The rest of the family were moving on to these newfangled too-big-for-your-pocket-screen-too-small-to-read-and-too-easily-damaged devices that I have never coveted, so I got my son's cast-off while keeping my number.

 

Yes, I persist in the view, comically baffling to my Offspring, that a 'phone is essentially and predominantly a 'phone. 

 

That said, I need email and, occasionally, internet, for work. The maps app I have found useful and, since I dropped my digital SLR, the camera function has proved a boon.

 

All these functions are adequately provided by bottom-of-the-range androids; to the limited extent I use a 'phone as anything other than a 'phone, the enhancements of the flag-ship products in any range would be completely redundant. 

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Morning All!

 

Currently, about the only thing I can handle without becoming exceedingly grumpy is utterly inconsequential trivia, which I think is because The Plague is amplifying every form of human weakness and folly, my own included.

 

How HMG could not see that they were riding for an almighty fall with the exam business, I really don't know - in a situation like this, teachers will always mark generously (kindly souls; expect their peers to do likewise; don't want to be the one to create harsh news for pupils they know personally; don't completely believe in exams as valid measures anyway); and, any algorithm that takes the track record of school performance into account will make uncomfortably overt the, usually neatly concealed, fact that success in key exams is much a function of how prosperous/poor the catchment area of the school is as of anything else. They should have seen it coming and avoided it.

 

I used to be quite ideological in outlook, and rated politicians accordingly, but now I set the bar really low. In no particular order:

 

1) Are they capable of understanding reality, and basing their decisions on it, rather than on paranoia, narcissism, or other gross delusions, for at least 85% of the time?

 

2) Are they competent (as in "can be trusted to run a whelk stall") in leading and managing?

 

3) Do they have a sufficient understanding of human nature to be able to navigate all the old nonsense that the rest of humanity generates?

 

4) Do they base their decisions on timeframes truly appropriate to the subject, at least on the really big, global, long-time-span topics?

 

5) Are they prepared to grasp difficult nettles, and at least attempt to deal with them?

 

6) Are they humane, without being a dim-witted soft-touch, for most of the time?

 

7) Is the self-serving component of their nature reasonably limited?

 

If they meet those tests, I really no longer care whether their informing principles are derived from  Christ, Machiavelli, Milton Friedman, Karl Marx, their mum, or a bloke they once met while waiting for a 'bus in Ealing.

 

Told you I was grumpy!

 

 

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4 minutes ago, Nearholmer said:

Morning All!

 

Currently, about the only thing I can handle without becoming exceedingly grumpy is utterly inconsequential trivia, which I think is because The Plague is amplifying every form of human weakness and folly, my own included.

 

How HMG could not see that they were riding for an almighty fall with the exam business, I really don't know - in a situation like this, teachers will always mark generously (kindly souls; expect their peers to do likewise; don't want to be the one to create harsh news for pupils they know personally; don't completely believe in exams as valid measures anyway); and, any algorithm that takes the track record of school performance into account will make uncomfortably overt the, usually neatly concealed, fact that success in key exams is much a function of how prosperous/poor the catchment area of the school is as of anything else. They should have seen it coming and avoided it.

 

I used to be quite ideological in outlook, and rated politicians accordingly, but now I set the bar really low. In no particular order:

 

1) Are they capable of understanding reality, and basing their decisions on it, rather than on paranoia, narcissism, or other gross delusions, for at least 85% of the time?

 

2) Are they competent (as in "can be trusted to run a whelk stall") in leading and managing?

 

3) Do they have a sufficient understanding of human nature to be able to navigate all the old nonsense that the rest of humanity generates?

 

4) Do they base their decisions on timeframes truly appropriate to the subject, at least on the really big, global, long-time-span topics?

 

5) Are they prepared to grasp difficult nettles, and at least attempt to deal with them?

 

6) Are they humane, without being a dim-witted soft-touch, for most of the time?

 

7) Is the self-serving component of their nature reasonably limited?

 

If they meet those tests, I really no longer care whether their informing principles are derived from  Christ, Machiavelli, Milton Friedman, Karl Marx, their mum, or a bloke they once met while waiting for a 'bus in Ealing.

 

Told you I was grumpy!

 

 

As far as pollies over here are concerned, whether Federal, State or local, most would score seven "No"s I'm sorry to say. There is a very small number of shining exceptions but I could count those on the fingers of one hand (and no, I'm not going to name them - my choices would probably be different from many of my compatriots and I don't want to (re)start that argument!).

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3 hours ago, Nearholmer said:

now I set the bar really low

Are you looking for them to limbo dance under it?
 

That’s a depressingly reasonable list of basic expectations.

Depressing because although reasonable, too many politicians are driven (or appear to be driven) by other motives nowadays.

 

Number 4 is almost impossible due to the cyclical nature of our election process.

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3 minutes ago, Regularity said:

Number 4 is almost impossible due to the cyclical nature of our election process.


Not quite impossible, but it would be highly unconventional, and initially at least phenomenally risky, because it would probably make It necessary for the incumbent to explain their actions properly, and build-up sufficient trust with their electorate to allow short-term “pain” to be suffered for long-term good.
 

The other option they have In order to create the space for long-term actions is to “transcend elections”, by corrupting and undermining democracy, which is currently very popular if one looks globally, but probably fails my test No.7.

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1 minute ago, Nearholmer said:

Not quite impossible, but it would be highly unconventional, and initially at least phenomenally risky, because it would probably make It necessary for the incumbent to explain their actions properly, and build-up sufficient trust with their electorate to allow short-term “pain” to be suffered for long-term good.

Yes: it basically requires the other 6 conditions to be fulfilled first, despite in many ways being the most important of them all.

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3 hours ago, Nearholmer said:

1) Are they capable of understanding reality, and basing their decisions on it, rather than on paranoia, narcissism, or other gross delusions, for at least 85% of the time?

More worryingly, there are those who understand reality and human nature (see number 3) and use this to generate paranoia at large, for example messrs Cameron and Osborne neatly tapped into (not so) latent xenophobia by repeatedly saying, “I am concerned that no one else is talking about the problem of immigration,” during opposition and government, which was untrue and they also actually didn’t come up with any practical solutions. These populist messages might tap into a rich vein of votes - witness the change in voting patterns in former industrial areas of the NE, who were routinely shafted by the Conservatives under Thatcher/Major, but deserted Labour over the misapprehension that their plight was not the fault of self-serving politicians nor or world-wide economic problems, but rather “foreigners”, particularly in and from the EU - but they are an uncomfortable and avoidable step along the path towards genocide.

7D0AFF75-F994-45E0-976D-E047534708AA.jpeg.9255f3487fa2b03267f150dab3de6f47.jpeg

 

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15 hours ago, Edwardian said:

 

indeed. The definition of a monster is someone who puts abstract ideas ahead of actual people. 

 

 

Unfortunately that sounds like a lot of the other party too. 

There is a problem with giving everyone higher grades in that there then isn't enough university places so  you can have good grades but still not able to get the place you want. 

 

I had son much trouble with my Android smart phone which seems to wilfully misinterpret my finger actions and was reluctant to ever let me have the keypad back when making a call so when faced with a voice saying press 1 for this etc. I would be forced to listen to the voice repeating the options but with no chance of responding. I replaced it with a refurbished Iphone.  Which is behaving much better.

The redundent Android now Simmless has been tried for use with a Bluetooth DCC system but has not seen fit to change its ways. Bl00dy annoying when it ignores a stop command. (admittedly it could be the receiving end but the phone has form as the police say.)

 

Don

 

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46 minutes ago, Regularity said:

More worryingly, there are those who understand reality and human nature (see number 3) and use this to generate paranoia at large, for example messrs Cameron and Osborne neatly tapped into (not so) latent xenophobia by repeatedly saying, “I am concerned that no one else is talking about the problem of immigration,” during opposition and government, which was untrue and they also actually didn’t come up with any practical solutions. These populist messages might tap into a rich vein of votes - witness the change in voting patterns in former industrial areas of the NE, who were routinely shafted by the Conservatives under Thatcher/Major, but deserted Labour over the misapprehension that their plight was not the fault of self-serving politicians nor or world-wide economic problems, but rather “foreigners”, particularly in and from the EU - but they are an uncomfortable and avoidable step along the path towards genocide.

 

 

 

Even the sainted 'son of the manse' Big Gordy was dog-whistling uncomfortably when he started talking about "British jobs for British workers" c2009. Mind you, he did save the world from financial collapse...

 

 

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Regarding that other matter, I am very happy to have a pocket sized computer that can access the internet anywhere, send and receive emails ditto, and should the need arise (which it rarely does) make and receive phone calls.

 

 

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15 minutes ago, Donw said:

 

 

I had son much trouble with my Android smart phone which seems to wilfully misinterpret my finger actions and was reluctant to ever let me have the keypad back when making a call so when faced with a voice saying press 1 for this etc...

 

 

 

 

Although only recently retired from a career in nursing, and well able to keep up with medical technology, my wife applies the well known technique of 'If in trouble, if in doubt, run in circles, scream and shout' to the iphone that our oldest son bought her for her birthday. I mention this only because the presence of the phone in the house is doing wonders for progress on my little branch line layout... in the shed....

 

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My good lady is the early adopters' early adopter, so there are always several not-quite-the-very-latest-thing mobile phones around that can be cascaded to me when I drop one down a storm drain, run over it with my car etc..

 

I'm currently struggling to hang on to one that I actually find quite good, because it has a nice big screen that works well as a satnav when cycling, against pressure to take-over an "even better" one that I don't actually like.

 

Its like trying to cascade a huge and powerful Pacific to a single-track rural branch-line (my brain) - its a wonderful engine, but not ideal for the job in hand.

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38 minutes ago, Nearholmer said:

against pressure to take-over an "even better" one that I don't actually like.

 

You've got to take this one off my hands, I've just seen a newer, shinier one...

 

Set up a simple DCC layout, say a shunting plank with a Hornby J50 and a few wagons and a suitable "cheap" DCC base station and WiFi adaptor*, install Engine Driver on the "unwanted" phone and you're away.... You can then safely use your current phone for its usual duties!

 

* I said "cheap" then I looked up the cheapest setup I know. Eeek!  Mind you, its no more expensive, or even LESS expensive, than a bells'n'whistles shiny new phone...

 

 

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5 minutes ago, Hroth said:

Set up a simple DCC layout, say a shunting plank with a Hornby J50 and a few wagons and a suitable "cheap" DCC base station and WiFi adaptor*, install Engine Driver on the "unwanted" phone and you're away.... You can then safely use your current phone for its usual duties!

https://www.sprog-dcc.co.uk/pi-sprog/pi-sprog-3-system
£130, plus your phone.

And it’s British.

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1 hour ago, wagonman said:

Even the sainted 'son of the manse' Big Gordy was dog-whistling uncomfortably when he started talking about "British jobs for British workers" c2009.

Yes, because he was afraid of losing some voters because (unfortunately) “blame the immigrant” (but carefully, by inference) was working too well.

Quote

Mind you, he did save the world from financial collapse.

I think that’s generally true, but on the other hand, he had a major hand in helping to create the problem...

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15 hours ago, Compound2632 said:

This is a Mobile Phone. Photo taken with a Camera. Remember those?

 

phone.JPG.7dc19866cdf28b06e6a738de16e202af.JPG

 

This is the phone we got my elder son when he started secondary school, so it's about nine years old. I did have a flip phone but about six years ago it slipped out of my pocket into a ceramic bowl of water (let's not go into that). Fortunately the SIM card survived. The rest of the family were moving on to these newfangled too-big-for-your-pocket-screen-too-small-to-read-and-too-easily-damaged devices that I have never coveted, so I got my son's cast-off while keeping my number.

 

This is my phone:

phone.JPG.3d69ac74497a1c144da0aa1efa1077d7.JPG

 

It does everything I want and was bought for around £15 no idea how many years ago from a secondhand shop. Despite (or perhaps because of) working in the IT sector since the late 80's (or maybe that is past-tense worked given my situation and the current state of the job market) I have watched the march of technology with increasing unease and scepticism until we have arrived at a surveillance society that the Stasi could only have dreamed of and I have become a technological refusenik.

 

I used to love watching the expressions and reactions when I plonked this on the table in meetings alongside the piles of "smart"phones and fondleslabs beloved by others; "Is that your phone?!" (have had blackberries and samsung devices from work in the past, but have always handed them back in with a sense of relief upon leaving).

 

My kids have given up trying to persuade me to get a "proper" phone; "You can get emails on it" - I have a laptop. "You can take pictures" - I have a digital SLR. (and in any case, what happened to those 100's of photos you took with your old devices, eh?)  "You can access social media" - don't use it (apart from RMweb) and see answer to your first point. "You can stay in contact with friends" -  what's wrong with writing a letter or sending a card or speaking to them? "You can surf the internet on long journeys" - that is what books, magazines and staring out the window in silent contemplation are for. It has been dropped from height onto solid floors many times and after picking up and re-assembling back cover, battery and SIM that go flying in all directions, works every time. Fully charged battery lasts for weeks.

 

But I sense that I am a crusty old fogey swimming against the tide, the number of times I am told to download the app, or scan or display the QR code;

 

smartphone.jpg.a160cc4814831c5b4de3598a10262dda.jpg

 

 

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13 minutes ago, Hroth said:

Set up a simple DCC layout, say a shunting plank


But, I’m building a shunting/photo plank for the study in old-fashioned 0 already, and phone-control would be totally out of keeping.

 

I nearly did it in modern-style 0, and even bought a Heljan railbus and a diesel shunter, thinking DCC, controllable noises etc, but then realised what a total diversion that would become, so sold the railcar and shunter!

 

Nope, I don’t want a ‘free’ phone becoming the start of a slippery slope!

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1 hour ago, Nearholmer said:

Its like trying to cascade a huge and powerful Pacific to a single-track rural branch-line (my brain) - its a wonderful engine, but not ideal for the job in hand.

 

"I never liked these big engines - always going wrong. Send for another engine at once."

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2 hours ago, Nearholmer said:

 

I'm currently struggling to hang on to one that I actually find quite good, because it has a nice big screen that works well as a satnav when cycling, against pressure to take-over an "even better" one that I don't actually like.

 

 

 

Does it do 'test and trace' though?

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53 minutes ago, Nearholmer said:


But, I’m building a shunting/photo plank for the study in old-fashioned 0 already, and phone-control would be totally out of keeping.

 

 

 

Why, because in the '50s we built things that actually worked?

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2 hours ago, Nearholmer said:

My good lady is the early adopters' early adopter, so there are always several not-quite-the-very-latest-thing mobile phones around that can be cascaded to me when I drop one down a storm drain, run over it with my car etc..

 

I'm currently struggling to hang on to one that I actually find quite good, because it has a nice big screen that works well as a satnav when cycling, against pressure to take-over an "even better" one that I don't actually like.

 

Its like trying to cascade a huge and powerful Pacific to a single-track rural branch-line (my brain) - its a wonderful engine, but not ideal for the job in hand.

 

I presume the pressure is because you taking over the even 'better one' helps here justify having dumped it for a super dooper one. Get it sent to Music Magpie or whoever they will only give you a pittance but it would be out of the house.

Don

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31 minutes ago, Edwardian said:

Why, because in the '50s we built things that actually worked?


The Truth of the Matter

 

Part 1.

 

The controllers I use are modern-ish analogue electronic ones.

 

Part 2.

 

Most 1950s model train controllers were blooming awful rheostatic things that are the enemy of fine control of the motors used at the time.

 

Part 3.

 

Most 1950s technology looks and is  laughably crude and unreliable compared with current stuff, but you can mend it with simple tools and basic skills, which can’t be said for much modern stuff including our Dyson ‘hoover’ (thoughts of which provoke more grumpiness).

 

 

 

 

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