Nashville Live In Concert At The Royal Albert Hall – Review

I went to see this show last Sunday. My wife and daughter wanted to go and I thought I’d tag along. The music in the show (which I don’t watch very often) is always of a high quality so it wasn’t much of a sacrifice!
As it happens, it turned out to be a fantastic concert; the band were phenomenal, but the surprise, perhaps unfairly, was just how good these ‘TV’ stars were live. I mean really, properly good.
I’d go and see these guys again in a heartbeat. Brilliant.

Lib Dem Role in Coalition, MythBuster

I was a fan of the coalition, and felt that on balance the LibDems managed to rein in the more outrageous Tory tendencies.
The LibDems were treated poorly in the aftermath of the coalition, but thats just politics I guess, although this article gives me truth to their real effect in government.
I would have liked to have seen another coalition following the last election – I think the LibDems would have prevented the current sorry state of affairs…


By Campaign Agent Eric Kostadinov

The Lib Dems get a very bad reputation for their role in the coalition government, and the public made their feelings clear in 2015, reducing their share of the vote to a tiny 8%. But did the Lib Dem performance in government really warrant such a poor electoral outcome?

The Lib Dems made no major influence in government

Although Nick Clegg and co. were unable to do everything they would’ve liked in government, including abolishing tuition fees, they did manage to implement a sizeable chunk of their manifesto, without getting the accolades. The coalition policy to increase the threshold at which people start to pay income tax was a Lib Dem commitment and a cornerstone of their 2010 manifesto. The policy has been a major help for many low income earners. This, along with introducing the Pupil Premium, a policy aimed at granting extra funding…

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Trump Knows You Better Than You Know Yourself

I always knew that social media and the simple use of store cards could be problematic in some way, but mainly personally, or with a bit of targeted marketing for new products or services.

This article however, blows that right out of the water. We are indeed being monitored, tracked and targeted by organisations, particularly political ones, to get what they want. Trump, Brexit and others to follow – they will all use this and politics will be simply about who clicks ‘like’ on Facebook and what they post. Not much really about actual issues that need fixing, just who ever has the deepest pockets and wants ‘the power’.

Ordinary people don’t really have any response to this, other than to stop using social media and store cards and smart phones all together! Thats a big step!

Watch out of Cambridge Analytica – and not in a good way.

aNtiDoTe Zine

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Why low paid self-employment is everyone’s problem

We live in strange and unsettling times. I found this post to be both insightful and depressing. I sincerely hope things improve as I suspect that at least one of my daughters is likely to be self employed once uni is done with!
Thanks to Rick for another excellent article!

Flip Chart Fairy Tales

More evidence of the collapse in self-employment incomes was published last week. The Resolution Foundation’s Earnings Outlook showed that the median weekly income of the self-employed is, in real terms, less than it was 20 years ago.


The gap between employee and self-employment earnings widened after the recession as the proportion of the workforce in self-employment rose to a record high.

On the same day, the Social Market Foundation also produced a report on low paid self-employment. They calculated that just under half the self-employed are being paid below the National Living Wage and that this rises to well above 50 percent in some sectors.


Furthermore, even before the introduction of the minimum wage, the self-employed were already more likely to be low paid than their employee counterparts in the same industry.


The discrepancy is only likely to get wider. The SMF report showed how difficult the self-employed find it to increase their…

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Looking behind the Brexit anger

Very interesting analysis about the anger surrounding the Brexit vote..lots of food for thought here.

Flip Chart Fairy Tales

Was the referendum result the revenge of the ‘left-behind’ voters? Not the most recently left-behind, says the Resolution Foundation’s Torsten Bell. Those areas that have experienced the sharpest fall in income since EU enlargement might have been expected to vote most strongly for Brexit but, as Torsten shows, “there is no relationship between how an area’s prosperity changed in recent years and how they voted.”

There is, though, a clear relationship between those areas with low earnings and high proportions of votes for Brexit.


You get a similar picture if you look at the 2002 earnings figures, says Torsten, which suggests you have to look back further to understand what is going on. As Will Davies of Goldsmiths puts it, the geography reflects the crisis of the 1970s and 80s not the 2010s:

It is easy to focus on the recent history of Tory-led austerity when analysing this, as if anger towards…

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Why I’m voting to remain in the EU — Never Cruel Nor Cowardly

I’ve been absent from these pages for too long. I need to get some blogging mojo back, but of late the EU Referendum has been driving me nuts and whilst I’d like to get on with blogging again, there is only one subject in my head! It’s driving me (and my wife) up the wall!

I’ve read a lot of stuff on the subject, and managed to find some good independent sites to check facts against. I also came across this article, which I found to be an interesting analysis, and whilst I don’t agree with everything he says, it makes, for me,  a very compelling argument to remain in the EU. It might also have driven me towards the Liberal Democrats…#unexpected!

I am going to explain in this post why I think a vote to remain in the European Union is the only responsible choice. I’m not going to link to sources as it would take far too long, and anyway I want it to be clear that this is my own view, based on everything […]

via Why I’m voting to remain in the EU — Never Cruel Nor Cowardly

LLAP Spock

I have no doubt that this will not be the only blog to comment on Leonard Nimoy’s passing. A sad day…

I’ve always loved Star Trek, and remember well watching it as kid in the 1970’s, not realising that even then it was over 10 years old! I used to watch with my dad and sister, and during the summer holidays, with my cousins when we stayed with them in Bournemouth, all singing along to the theme tune like loons. Funny times…


Spock was probably my favourite character in the Star Trek universe, his inherant ‘differentness’ compared to the rest of the crew, yet somehow the most human. I loved to watch Kirk and the others get in and out of scrapes too of course, and like you perhaps, I made bets with myself over which unknown crewman in a red jersey was going to die next. But ultimately it was Spock that I liked to watch, and it’s no surprise to me, that Spock was the character that Nimoy was ultimately unable to shake off! It’s a good thing he ended up embracing him.


Mission Impossible

I always found Leonard Nimoy great to watch; he had gravitas and brought that to whatever he was in. Around the same time as I was watching Star Trek in the 70’s, the BBC also showed Mission Impossible. My memories of this are more hazy as it wasn’t shown as often as Star Trek, but I remember watching it and realising for the first time that actors played different roles! An epiphany (of a kind) for a 10 year old!.

More recently (apart from his appearances in the new Star Trek franchise), I enjoyed seeing Nimoy appear in Fringe, a show I watched in it’s entirety last year (thanks to Netflix!) and which I loved. It was a pleasure to see him portraying the enigmatic William Bell, a man who’s motives were not always clear.

Another interesting character. Rather like the Leonard Nimoy himself…

Live Long And Prosper.

© Richard Debonnaire (Text)

(Pictures from various sources)