Archive for Uncategorized
FUCK OFF AND GO WATCH X FACTOR.
For everyone else, there’s
I never quite got Mark Stewart to quite the extent that I got Gary Clail, however Mark’s still releasing records, but Gary after running a guest house in Penzance, from the last info I can glean, was living on a house boat, and working in a homeless hostel. Which strikes me that from the understanding that both artists wrote pretty good (in my opinion) musical critiques of the system at the time, Mark was the more canny player, whilst Gary perhaps lived it that bit more, and thus became the victim of the system he drew from. No less a truth for that, I hope you would agree.
Whilst I am a supporter of evolution over intelligent design, more in that evolution is a viable scientific argument than anything to do with God. As I don’t see either evolution or the big bang actually disproving all ideas of God, just most definitely Creationism, and quite probably alienated ideas of God such as that found in Christianity, Judaism and Islam. I find intelligent design a flailing attempt to refuse one’s own purpose or place in the universe, and further more human relations.
Just as bad in this respect though are evolutionists such as Dawkins, and conservative evolutionary sociobiologists and psychologists. My understanding of the world sits as comfortably with Foucault and Habermas as Popper, Kuhn and Feyeraband (unless one takes Sokal with an uncritical eye and ignore the counter arguments that Sokal also misunderstood the so-called postmodernists in much the same way he claimed they misunderstood science). My evolutionary beliefs thus sit more comfortably with Stephen Jay Gould and Steven Rose. Here is a video of Steven Rose being interviewed by Richard Dawkins to get a gist of the disagreement.
However there may, as Steven Rose suggests, be an ideological reason behind Dawkins attack on religion. If one has to remove Intelligent Design from our idea of evolution, and I think trying to be aware of paradigms and falsifiability, there is currently very little evidence for the large part to falsify evolutionary theory, whilst intelligent design is of course unfalsifiable scientifically (in the extent that it is not a scientific argument it is a metaphysical one) but there are large areas where it may well be logically, (one way to falsify a metaphysical argument, although be aware there are also limits to logic as there are limits to scientific knowledge).
One also has to remove it from science. This was done long ago with Popper’s criticism of logical positivism, then by Kuhn. However the problem lies in the values by which the facts in science are evaluated. Nietzsche suggested there are no facts just interpretations, I would disagree, there are facts but the interpretations are important. So much so that there seem to be some scientists who once they leave their experimental laboratory seem to forget that the echoes of positivism still exist in our society, language and values, no matter how much they claim to understand the post-Popperian attitude to science.
Wither now progress, if one confuses destiny with a specific destination. Whether that be God or Truth, or even Rationality. Especially the rationality of the market, self-interest. Another alienated belief?
I usually get exhausted by Sunday, but it was Mother’s Day, so my partner and I and eldest went for a walk. Up the river, where I am wont to go a-ranting, but this time it was peaceful. However my little boy got tired and wanted to be carried. He’s 3 so was relatively tiring.
We then went to Sainsbury’s Cafe for a hot chocolate (well I had and needed a coffee but this was the Mother’s Day treat, my sweetheart has simple tastes) and of course to get some flowers. But I was getting tired and my voices were getting bad so we went home.
My partner had arranged to go and visit my daughter in hospital with my sister-in-law (our car failed its MOT, we can’t afford the repairs and so have to get bus) who agreed to look after our boy.
We agreed I should rest as my partner would be tired herself later and needed me to be fresh to support her then. I decided to watch Jean Cocteau’s Orphee that had arrived in the post from LoveFilm. But first I meditated and then had a bath to calm down.
For a long time i had realised I needed to empathise with my voices somehow, but I found it hard. OK with others, but not my voices (ironic as there is an argument that you can’t empathise with others if you can’t empathise with yourself – which brings up interesting conundrum in who are you empathising with? Ego, Superego, Id, Other?). I decided to try NVC on them. I had decided long before going to see Rufus May in a workshop down here, but going had reinforced my decision. However it proved to be hard so I had decided to work on my autonomy in life first. (Since the experience related in this post I have been to a lecture by the psychologist Mark Haywood who discusses the various merits of this (he also has worked with Rufus) and his research suggests both approaches – dealing with voices directly and sorting out social relations have efficacious results).
However after meditating (I have been using Jack Kornfield’s Meditation For Beginners and the guided meditation CD that comes with. There are 4 I use, one just focussing on the breath, one on the body, one on emotions and one on thoughts – I used the body one this time) I found the strength to empathise with my voices.
I should point out also that I had been reading Foucault’s Order of Things, with specific respect that week to the part where he talks of Rousseau’s conjecture that vowel sounds in language’s origins referred to emotions and consonants needs, also that prior to this I had been realising in Sainsbury’s that at that moment my voices were coming at me as single word signifiers. This reminded me of Lacan’s discussion of the woman who heard the word ‘Sow’ in his book on the psychoses and his talk of these signifiers, which I found interesting in relation to Foucault’s discussion of the changing episteme of language where the belief was that language went from a body movement expressing a need or emotion to a naming of an action to relations between these signs. With relation to NVC idea that emotions are a sign of unmet needs, or met needs if positive, and here I was having a string of unrelated signifiers, Lacan’s S1 S1 S1. I should also point out that prior to the above empathic epiphany I had also had a conversation with my partner in the park on the way to the Cafe from the river bank where she had stated that she did not hear voices. Now I have a problem with my voice/ psychosis that sometimes i assume everyone else does too. My partner also stated that she was unaware of anyone else hearing any either (although I have freaked her out occasionally by talking in a way that makes her wonder if she is the only one who doesn’t – but in this case her confidence in her world was strong).
The empathising was working well in the bath. I was using the phrases ‘Are so you are upset by this… you are unhappy with me saying that…’ This would later morph to ‘So that is what YOU think’ and ‘So that is the way YOU see the world’ which tend to work in 90% of the time in an emergency when my empathic ability falls short.
I then started to watch Orphee, I don’t think initially I was personalising the story, but I suppose I was digging the universality of the metaphorical story. But things became uncanny at the moment the original Roman part of the story ended and Cocteau’s own version continued as Heurtebise takes Orphee to Death, but she decides to return him to Eurydice.
However at the moment Orphee returned through the mirror the picture seized. It wasn’t the disc, I watch my DVDs on my laptop and for ages I have had a problem with Winhost.exe slowing it down. As it happened I also had to have the PC fixed mentioned this to them and they swapped my Internet Security software for an equally secure but less memory greedy one than the one I was using. This had fixed the problem until now. The picture was stuck. I only had 1 min 30 seconds left. But I couldn’t finish the story.
It was then I realised my wife was due back. I became convinced I had to see Orphee returned to Eurydice before she returned and I looked at her. It was then I remembered my wife telling me that if I turned off the internet connection (not currently necessary as I was watching a DVD) it usually sorted the problem out.
The whole laptop screen was seized up. So I couldn’t turn the wi-fi off from there. I couldn’t disconnect from the matrix. I was reminded immediately of this article in mute (who have just had 100% of their funding slashed by the way) on hostile objects, the idea that man’s alienated hatred gets put in machines and returns to us as something malevolent. I was upstairs in the bedroom and the hub was downstairs. I ran down the stairs to see my sister in law, through the window, coming towards the house. They were back. I yanked the lead out of the back of the hub and ran upstairs ignoring my sister-in-law banging on the door.
My wife had a key and i could here her turning it. The film restarted it. I could hear my wife calling telling me I was home but i dare not come down until the film was over, there was only a minute and a half left after all. The film finished and I went down. All was well.
A little while later my wife was putting my boy to bed and I was doing the washing up. I tend to get voices strongly in the kitchen, so I put on the digital radio. However as the electricity had cut off earlier (different story) the radio had returned to its default settings. So Radio absolute came on, the first in the list. Except of course the Absolute was off air. I went to 6 music, but just got loads of static, I could only hear the host mention the words residents and third reich. I moved to Radio 4, an extra station had appeared called 4 ex (I checked Radio 4 was still there, it was). But the static was still bad and the only thing I could hear was talk sketches of a documentary about the Haldron Collider, then the radio just went angrily noisy. I turned it off.
I have mentioned before I have a voice called the Bitch. She was back, I tried to empathise with her. I asked her if she was angry. She said she was, very angry. Then all the voices came back, in full force.
Looks like this empathy thing may be harder than I thought.
Well, as of a week ago last friday I have been free of medication. Last week was hard, mainly though as my wife had a distressing time and so the stress of supporting her brought on some voices stronger than they had been for some time, making me fear that this would not go as smoothly, however since she has got over her initial upset of the events involved they have reduced to a low level again.
As it happens on Saturday I went up to my mum’s and grandma’s to pick up stuff that had been stored there for decades. Today i have been going through some of it, of course old memories bring up emotions and at a time like this it could, obviously, make me feel vulnerable, I no longer have that chemical shield against my emotions brought on by medication. But one thing has really upset me.
I came across my discharge care plan from 1996. Now please bear in mind how long ago that is. And then bear in mind I have been recently congratulating myself on coming off medication.
I shall now quote, the report does not mention the author of the quote but this quote comes after comments from my psychiatrist:
“xxx’s medication is Sulpiride 600mg. twice daily, which had started to work quickly and had calmed him down and removed the feelings and thoughts which had distressed him. He had improved noticeably, but was vulnerable under stress. It was thought that xxx should stay on the medication for a year or so and then come off it gradually”
What the hell happened! That was 15 fucking years ago! So pleased with my efforts now, thinking of the hard work on myself I have had to put myself through, and what it was thought this should have been that temporary? Was I failed? Did I fail myself? Was I not given the therapy I should have been. Was it not there? Could I have done this myself earlier if I hadn’t been kept on medication that blunted the emotions that distressed me? What because people were worried about me? Cared about me? That’s not worrying or caring about me, that’s worrying and caring about your own inability to deal with distress you fucks!
Of course, a vulnerable time that this and all those jokes that i have been making in posts recently about the uncanny, and I found out this, at precisely this time. Having watched Girl, Interrupted last night, with it’s 1960′s version of recovery. Shit.
Right now i am upset and angry. I think justifiably so. I feel very let down.
> Sent: 18 October 2009 17:44
> Subject: Why we are going on strike
> We think it’s fair to say that you our customers are not interested in why we
> are once again striking.It is also fair to say that some of the problems we are
> going through does not affect you either.
> What you are interested in is you getting your mail and whatever mail you send
> getting there within the allotted time depending on what service was paid for.
> But we do think that it is fair to inform you of part of the reason as to why
> we are striking as it affects you in a big way.
> But before we go on let’s get one thing out 1st,it’s not about a pay rise,far
> from it,a pay rise if we are to be truthful is in the mix but is not as a high
> priority as other concerns we have.
> Please just take a minute to see what we have to say.
> What’s affecting you then?
> In 2007 we signed an agreement with Royal Mail called the Pay & Modernisation
> deal,in that deal there are, amongst other things, a new working practice
> called ‘absorption’.
> This is one of YOUR biggest problems,whether you are a domestic or business
> Before the deal any postal workers rounds that weren’t covered due to staff
> sickness,holidays,or general shortage would be covered by other postal workers
> on overtime.
> There would be no shortage of posties willing to do this,so there was never a
> major problem getting the mail delivered.
> But now we have ‘absorption’,what this now means is that any rounds now that
> does not have a postal worker allocated to it is now absorbed by the rest of
> the postal workers in the office.
> With Royal Mail insisting that mail volumes are falling they are under the
> impression that we know have a lot of spare time in which to absorb other
> posties work.
> This is not the case,not only have we lost 60,000 staff in the business in the
> last few years (our CEO Adam Crozier has publicly admitted this) but we now
> have a large proportion of part-time workers which affects the way the mail
> pipeline works.
> Mail is being delayed regularly and in vast amounts around the country in the
> name of absorption,so managers can report that absorption has happened and the
> savings have been made,some posties have to leave part of their round in the
> office,they also are being forced to ‘cut off’ or stop their deliveries as they
> have run out of time.
> Royal Mail drivers have been taken off their packet routes to help absorption,
> hence packets are left undelivered for days.
> This is a mass abuse of the deal we signed in 07,and posties are being bullied
> and threatened with taken off pay if they either refuse to do this or happen to
> cut off.
> Later deliveries
> A few years back Royal Mail ceased the 2nd delivery and you now only get one,
> but the truth is Royal Mail did not stop the 2nd delivery they cancelled the
> We now start our rounds at the time that we started the 2nd delivery years ago
> and now, Royal Mail want even later start times. So while today, if you’re one
> of the lucky ones, you might meet your postman before you go to lunch, you will
> soon be meeting him just before dinner. We are aware that this causes big
> problems for businesses all over the UK more especially those that work from
> But that does not seem to matter to Royal Mail, later start times and later
> deliveries are all down to modernisation, or in other words, new sorting
> machines being brought in which, would you believe, take even longer to sort
> the mail.
> This will also affect our own work/life balance and there are childcare issues,
> and school run problems, already rising because of it.
> You may also be aware before we went to Single Daily Delivery, you could pick
> up any packets or signed for letters left in the morning around 2 hours or so
> later at your local office. That, as some of you may be aware has changed, some
> places you have to wait 24 hours, most 48 but there are some where you can’t
> get the packet for nearly 72hrs.
> That’s if your office is local instead of on some industrial estate somewhere,
> and of course if it does not close before lunch.
> This is Royal Mail modernisation.
> If you don’t like your job,then leave
> This is what we read about all the time from alleged customers on the Internet
> news stories comment sections, and, regrettably Royal Mail management.
> But who says that we don’t like our job. You will find that most posties love
> their job, but are finding it harder and harder to provide the service they
> want and their customers expect, not just because of the work levels, but more
> so the bullying and harassment by managers at all levels of the business.
> Why should we have to put up with the constant B&H and worsening of our terms
> and conditions, when all we want to do is get on with our job and provide a
> service to our customers.
> We will not be hounded out of a job we love in the name of profit, or be made
> to feel guilty because we decide to defend our current Conditions of service,
> instead of allowing them to be decimated because of the inherently unfair bonus
> culture of Royal Mail.
> National strike
> The 1st strike was in London N18 Edmonton against introduction of part-time
> duties by executive action on 7th March. Cowdenbeath DO was the first among
> many in Scotland to strike against Executive Action on 27th March. The whole of
> London took action throughout June, and over 500 other offices around the
> country either went out on strike or requested a strike ballot.
> Previously to all of this some Mail Centres around the country took strike
> action over their closures, and the lack of real consultation.
> London, since June have taken over 16 days of action.
> During all that time we have repeatedly asked Royal Mail to negotiate with our
> Union about, not only the problems that you have so far read about and will
> read about below, but more importantly the fact that previous agreements are
> either being ignored or abused.
> It has now come to the time where enough is enough and now we have,
> unfortunately, the national strikes.
> No more efficiency changes this year
> This is what Royal Mail have claimed but this is not the case,there are many
> cases on the site where Royal Mail are still pushing ahead with with their
> changes. Including later start times,full-time positions going to
> part-time,Pegasus 2 revisions (flawed computer program),night staff being moved
> to days,full-time staff to prep part-time staff walks,more hours to go from
> delivery offices…
> You the tax payer
> You are being mislead by the media and the Government regarding Billions of
> pounds of tax payers money being used to prop up Royal Mail and our
> pensions,this is not the case and a blatant lie by all.
> For many years the treasury have taken our profits from us for their own gain,
> add nearly 13 years when due to tax reasons Royal Mail did not pay into our
> pension scheme, and yes the treasury got that money as well, you the tax payer
> owes Royal Mail Billions of pounds.
> Any money recently received by Royal Mail from tax payers has been a loan and
> has to be paid back at commercial loan rates which means that the tax payer has
> once again benefited from us.
> This is a simple one,the Government have said that they will take over our
> pension deficit only if we get part-privatised.
> The crux of this,is that you the tax payer will pay for our pensions,but a
> private investor will not have to so they will just get the profits. Our Union
> Leader remarked on this at the Labour Conference by saying the Government were
> Privatising the Profit and Nationalising the debt.
> The tax payer will have the debt, while the private investor will get the
> We, us the humble posties do not need to tell you what happens after a company
> is privatised, you only need to look at your utility bills, train fares and
> your bank statements for that.
> Mail volumes
> We agree that mail volumes are down,but not as much as Royal Mail say, we
> accept the recession has had an effect, but again, not as much that Royal Mail
> has said.
> With 60,00 jobs gone, bigger rounds,over 1 Million new homes built in the last
> few years with more to come, a few letters less in our post bag, when you add
> the mass increase in packets due to e-commerce,there is no leeway in our duties
> like Royal Mail think.
> Add the fact that Royal Mail now count the mail differently with an un agreed
> and flawed process,then you have false traffic figures.
> What is in the boxes that they send the mail down to Delivery Offices, is very
> much under estimated and has been shown to be so by royalmailchat members
> counting individual boxes.
> Independent report on Royal Mail
> Last year the Government requested an independent report on Royal Mail (The
> Hooper report) this found many flaws with the way the business is being
> run,including lack of transparency by the business with its figures and the
> fact that Royal Mail management were not up to the job.
> We are not against modernisation
> WE ARE NOT AGAINST CHANGE – We signed up to the Pay and Mod Agreement. RM
> ignored Phase 4 till we started local strikes.
> WE ARE AWARE THERE WILL BE JOB LOSSES – 60,000 gone in recent years.
> WE ARE NOT ASKING FOR A PAY RISE PER SE – We had a pay freeze this year which
> was imposed against the spirit of the 2007 agreement.
> WE ARE NOT AGAINST MODERNISATION – But we haven’t seen it in deliveries unless
> you count longer routes with heavier bags.
> WE OFFERED A MORATORIUM ON STRIKES IF ROYAL MAIL DISCUSSED CHANGES – Royal Mail
> refused saying it was a stalling tactic but now they want it when un agreed
> systems are in place.
> WE ARE NOT AGAINST WORKING HARD – The Union suggested having independent
> organisations help both sides come up with a fair and balanced way of measuring
> workload and standard – Royal Mail refused.
> The 2007 agreement allowed local units to have innovative attendance patterns,
> and these were agreed in some units with full Royal Mail involvement. Yet
> without consulting the CWU (as per the agreement) they unilaterally enforced
> change on these working arrangements.
> The agreement also allowed a local earnings package,this has been taken away by
> Royal Mail.
> We are and we will strike against – Bullying and Harassment such as
> • Being suspended for pointing out H&S concerns.
> • Being sent home without pay when we can’t complete a delivery in the time
> allotted especially if managers are not willing to walk test us or check
> individual posties frames to see how busy they are.
> • Genuine overtime being struck off when you go over your contracted hours on
> a busy day.
> • Being sent home without pay when you can’t do the half hour flexibility
> when asked – even though personal reasons are meant to be taken into account as
> per the 07 agreement.
> • When you do the 1/2hr flexibility not being able to claw it back or be paid
> it on overtime as per the 07 agreement. Or being given it back in 5 minute
> • Changing our start and finish times on a weekly basis without negotiation.
> • Using a flawed computer program to work out rounds with un-agreed walk
> • No independent H&S review after accidents at work – Staff being blamed for
> accidents without thorough and external review of all pertinent matters by an
> independent body.
> Spanish practices do not exist
> The reality in modern delivery offices is that the posties slogs their guts out
> everyday under the gaze of managers ready to sack them for the slightest
> Many many part-timers are bullied by managers into doing unpaid over time day
> in day out.
> All OT has to be OK’ed by management and most posties are too intimidated to go
> see their manager to ask for it.
> A lot of our guys do hrs of OT per week for nothing.
> Give the Public a service – Yep that’s Royal Mails job and guess how they do
> 1. Close 3,500 Post Offices.
> 2. Reduce the service at 1000s of others.
> 3. Allow the Government to withdraw some of the services you used to be able to
> get at POs.
> 4. Ceased Sunday Collections (now for anyone to get anything on Monday you need
> to send it before 1230 on Saturday.
> 5. Cancelled Bank Holiday Collections.
> 6. Cancelled 2nd Delivery
> 7. Made the 1st delivery later than the 2nd ever was.
> 8. Laid off 60,000 workers through various means.
> 9. Close delivery offices and amalgamate them into Super DOs on industrial
> estates miles from bus routes.
> 10. Bring in a complicated and expensive postage system. (Pricing in
> 11. Increase handling fees for Import from £4 to £8.
> 12. Increase the surcharge of underpaid items to £1.
> 13. Increase stamp prices above inflation.
> 14. Agree a price with DSA competitors to use our network which means we
> subsidise them to the tune of 2p per item.
> 15. Take 5 years to spend half of the 1.2billion the government loaned them,
> but we are still yet to see the machines in use on a UK wide basis even though
> trials are going well according to Royal Mail.
> 16. Removing Mail Cycles and replacing them with cars and then claiming they
> are doing everything to reduce carbon emissions.
> 17. Half day closing for all Callers Offices and a delay of up to 72 hours
> before you can collect parcels/letters after getting a “Sorry you were out
> All of the above is not exhaustive, but we are, thank you for taking the time to
> read it.
> Please send this on to all your contacts ta very much.