Sunday, 20 January 2013

The extent people will go to be famous

Andy Warhol once said that everybody will be famous for 15 minutes. I don't quite agree with him but he has a point is that some people are famous and then fade away. For example, there are many rock stars or TV stars from the 1970's and 1980's, who are still alive and well, but you never hear about them nowadays in January 2013.. They don't make the news anymore and are more or less consigned to obscurity. Perhaps in some cases it is obscurity that is well deserved in some cases.

Does anybody remember Maureen Rees, that woman who took numerous attempts to pass her driving test? She was featured on a Reality TV show about 1997.. and for me, that programme triggered off the Reality TV crazy of the naughties and the tens. Of course there has always been Reality TV shows throughout the history of Television, but from about 1999 onwards there has been reality TV shows, after that, dominating our screens, on every Channel. Yet who hears about Maureen Rees nowadays? Or for that matter, many Pop Idol/X-factor winners or even notable contestants. Step forward Hearsay, Gareth Gates, Michelle McManus, Steve Brookstein and Shayne Ward. Do you see these people's faces plastered all over the national newspapers? Do you hear about them constantly on the national TV news?

The problem is with fame is that for some people it is never enough. Some seek it at any price. Like for example, those who go on the X-factor auditions early on, who have no discernible singing talent. Yet they still go on there to humiliate themselves on National TV, in front of millions of people watching. You must ask why on earth do they do it? Do they possess no shame or sense of self-worth? Are they so desperate that they will do anything to be recognised or noticed? I remember this bloke in his mid 70's went on.. with a white beard and white hair and recited a poem. I personally can't see the connection between that and musical or singing talent but there you go.

Occasionally people seeking fame, who aren't particularly talented, have gone onto make names for themselves. Jedward for example, have established themselves as a novelty act and I am sure they are now both millionaires. I think their music is hideous, but they have done well out of it so good luck to them. There was this guy who went on Holland's version of the X-factor who had no musical talent. I can't exactly remember what is name was but he was voted off early and yet made a minor name for himself as a novelty act and opened a few shops and supermarkets. And of course I remember from a long time back, Michael "Eddie the Eagle" Edwards, who came last at the February 1988 Calgary Olympics for Britain. Edwards became an international celebrity and appeared in talk shows all over the world. I remember him on Wogan all those years ago. Edwards appeared in a number of advertising campaigns, e.g. on television, promoting cars. He was able to command fees of £10,000 an hour, and again, good luck to him.

When you watch Snooker matches, people there seem to have a cough. Perhaps it must be a prerequisite to gain entrance to snooker matches that you have to have one. Whenever a player takes a shot, suddenly, everybody at once starts coughing!!! It seems that people are trying to get their cough on TV. When you watch football matches on TV as well, you see people waving at the TV cameras, or trying to get noticed.

Have you noticed with Songs of Praise it happens as well? On an average Sunday there will probably be about 6 people and a Dog in the Church. Then the TV cameras turn up and what happens? They are packed to the rafters.. even the Atheists turn up and start singing hymns just to get on TV... then the following week there are probably 6 people and a dog again in the same Church. And the regular congregation, the faithful who turn up every Sunday are shoved out of the way by the rest because the TV cameras are there.

Saturday, 12 January 2013

A fortune or property might not be the only thing they find

Has anybody seen that Heir Hunters programme on BBC1? If they look hard enough, finding heirs to fortune or property that has been left might not be the only thing the researchers come across if they search hard enough. It is formulaic that the deceased on the programme are loners or recluses who had hardly any friends, didn't bother with many of the neighbours, if any of them. In hindsight, from what we know nowadays, perhaps many of those who have died, who have been featured on the programme, were on the Spectrum and didn't know about it or were undiagnosed, or had at least psychiatric conditions or personality disorders which were undiagnosed? Watching that programme has made me realise that is actually a job I feel I would be good at. In fact I would be good at being both a recluse and heir hunter! I only accidentally came across my talent for research when I did my 95 year old Grandmothers family tree between March 2010 and March 2011.

Sunday, 6 January 2013

And The Scapegoating Goes On.. Everlasting.......

In February 1980 a group called the Whispers had a chart hit called "And the beat goes on". It reached number 3, in an era when music was a lot better than it is at the present, when various types of music were in the charts, and when the charts had not been ruined by X-factor and other similar shows. Nearly 19 years later, in late 1998, Will Smith ripped the tune off for his hit "Miami" but the Whispers production remains, in my opinion, by far the most superior work. Also, if the Whispers hadn't ever released that song, I wouldn't have had the title of this blog entry. I have decided to change the words around slightly to "And the Scapegoating goes on.. everlasting"....

And so it does... in the past all sorts of sub-groups of society have been made scapegoats of, by the national media, by politicians and by society in general. Black people, homosexuals, immigrants, asylum seekers and single parents have been among them. Since the recession which started in 2008, and this government got into power, though they did not win the 2010 General Election, I have noticed that the ill, the poor, the unemployed, and the disabled are being scapegoated and blamed, by the trinity of the media, politicians and society in general.

NoI don't have a PHD in the discipline of Economics but I don't seem to remember people with Autism, or Down's Syndrome, or Cerebral Palsy or Spina Bifida or blindness crashing the stock market in the World's financial crisis, and as a result, rewarding themselves with vast amounts of money in bonuses for doing so. Now correct me or forgive me if that is what did happen, and I will retract what I am saying, but I always was of the understanding that it was city bankers who caused it.

In tandem, hate crime in society is at an all time high against the disabled. I personally blame the recession for this, but more so gobshite writers such as Simon Heffer, Richard Littlejohn, Rod Liddle, and Kelvin MacKenzie, newspapers the Sun, the Mail and the Express and numerous politicians for their lies, smears, sneers and stereotyping and distortions of the ill and disabled.

Iain Duncan-Smith says that benefit rises are "Unfair". When he and countless of other MP's and Peers made excessive expense claims, notably for duck pond repairs and moat repairs, and when MP's and Peers ripped the taxpayer off, did they think that was fair? And when MP's have second and third jobs earning thousands of pounds more money do they think that is fair? Or when ministers took backhanders in brown envelopes from Mohammed Al Fayed did they think was fair?

The Sun newspaper was ranting today about benefit claimants.. They parrot what Duncan-Smith says. Neither is hacking into the phones of murdered 13 year old girls fair, or derailing murder inquiries, or bribing the Police, or misleading the Police, or giving parents false hopes their daughter is still alive, or aiding and abetting Levi Bellfield to go free to kill twice more and almost a third time, or hacking into other people's phones fair, or not paying tax into the UK for 25 years. News International haven't paid tax into the UK since 1987, think of how much money that has robbed the UK of schools, hospitals and road repairs?

You would think the way the media carries on, and politicians and the gobshites in the press, that Benefit Fraud was costing the UK something like 200 billion a year. In reality it costs just over one billion a year. If someone is committing benefit fraud, on a repeated basis, or does it and earns a vast amount of money, then I have no sympathy for them if they are caught offending. They know the consequences of their actions. However, it has to be pointed out that tax evasion costs the UK between 4 billion at a conservative estimate, and 20 billion according to other estimates. I have heard even higher sums. In total, it is estimated that tax evasion and avoidance combined costs the UK of about 95 bilion..

I feel less sympathy for someone on 66k a year fiddling expenses, which is an MP's salary, than I do someone on 67 quid a week Someone on 66k a year fiddling expenses is doing it out of greed.. someone on 67 quid often does it out of necessity. I find it morally offensive that someone with so much money they don't know what to do with it avoids and evades taxes, and to compound that, slags someone off for working on the side to make ends meet. It is not just morally offensive. It is grossly hypocritical.

And to the people hating those on benefits, many of you have more in common with them than a huge corporation or News International. You might end up disabled or being too ill to work in future yourself, or being simply unemployed. How will you feel then, if you are being scapegoated and demonised? People had to jump through hoops so to speak, as it was, to pass Incapacity Benefit tests already, and rightly so.

All these people and organisations know what they are doing when they are whipping up hatred against those on benefits, and I have to say that they are doing a very good job of it. Divide and rule. The oldest trick in the book, and time after time after time, the public fall for it - hook, line and sinker.

Friday, 4 January 2013

No New Year's Resolutions For Me

I won't be making any New Years Resolutions for 2013. I think I will make a New Year's Resolution not to make any New Year's Resolution! I see making them as pointless as you break them usually at some point, and besides, why do you wait for the start of a New Year to make a New Years resolution? You can try to change your ways or habits at any time in the year. No, no, no, they aren't for me. I just hope to learn from any mistakes I made this year or any other and resolve not to repeat them because if I don't then I will continue to repeat them.