Jump to content


Member Since 19 Apr 2004
Offline Last Active Yesterday, 10:46 PM

#3059410 Union not that much different to League

Posted by ckn on 22 January 2015 - 10:27 PM

Enough of the petty pedantry that sounds like a low-lights reel of the Simpson's Comic Store Guy.  Although we do try to allow forum self-moderation we do take exception to it when it gets to borderline bullying.  If someone REALLY annoys you, either hit ignore or hit report.

#3057419 Union not that much different to League

Posted by ckn on 19 January 2015 - 10:39 AM

It's very obvious that the RFU are being bullied by the likes of Wray and other top-tier owners, every time the RFU gives an inch the owners take it as rightfully theirs then demand another.  The amount of money the RFU gets in is more than enough to run the admin of the entire game but the owners, much like SL owners, cannot see anything existing below their level.  The owners can only see today, they can't see that it's the development all the way down to the lowest tier of the 15 tiers of union in England that unearths their future playing stars and referees at the top level.  I'm quite sure that some of the owners would sign up to the complete dismantling of the amateur game if it gave them an extra 5% income today.  Some of the cuts already being made in the lower tiers are just daft and a lot of good people have walked away from the game.  Still, they have a lot to learn from rugby league, it's once they cut their development officers that they'll be truly on the path to complete idiocy.

#3057047 General Election 2015

Posted by ckn on 18 January 2015 - 04:30 PM

The NHS is being used as a political tool already by the parties and media and they've won because no-one challenges them.  For example, I was talking with a clinical lead last week, we were discussing the stats on out-of-hours GP appointments and in December there were approximately 30% of appointments unused in the four commissioning areas covering the southern half of Essex and available through the 111 system.  If a patient had called 111 up to 8pm then they would have had a GP appointment available, might not be their GP but it would be a GP, within a 5 mile radius within 1 hour in over 95% of occasions in December and from 8pm to 5am the central GP out-of-hours clinics would have had just off 100% availability within 1 hour.  Unfortunately, the 111 system has been criticised by so many people that people who have never used it shy away and go to A&E then complain about long delays.  Most areas in England, outside of London, are in a similar situation.  In London, the idiot commercial market in the NHS means that commissioners tend to be less willing to share resources meaning you could have one postcode with huge waiting queues for standard GP appointments and the next having plenty of appointments available but untaken.


Labour spin against the 111 and commissioning system because they weren't their idea.  Tories spin against wastage in the NHS because they want more commercialisation.  Lib Dems spin against the NHS, promising to invest in areas that their own MPs have had ministerial control over and have cut by 10%+ since 2010.  UKIP spin against the NHS because of all the immigrants who use and staff it.


The NHS cannot plan beyond May because regardless of who wins there will be another reorganisation.  There are large capital budgets being used but the commissioners are spending and hoping that it's not all going to be wasted in the next reorganisation just because the new government wants to show it's "doing something".  The Tories have promised lots of primary care money but the acute care and secondary care areas know that they'll probably see their budgets cut to compensate.  Labour promise more nurses but then GPs are worried that that'll mean they lose out.  Lib Dems have promised mental health money but it'll do nothing but put a sticking plaster over the gaping wound that their own mental health minister has caused with his cuts.  The best thing that the politicians could do is to promise, and keep it, that they'll do nothing for a few years to let things settle down.

#3055247 Sponsorship outrage!

Posted by ckn on 13 January 2015 - 02:35 PM

Just as a lighter-hearted comment, I saw one bloke with one of these walking through London yesterday, it had a bright green end and didn't half remind me of those sweet fake cigarettes kids used to be able to buy in the 80s.  It just looked completely ridiculous.


Even if I had no opinion on whether ecigs are ethical, safe or whatever, it's completely the wrong image for our sport and just drags our image back to the old days.  Fit for only advertising sub-prime products that the more premium advertisers won't go near.  Could you ever imagine the likes of Nike or Audi or a premium financial firm wanting to sponsor a sport that is happy to take ecigs and gambling sponsorships?  Someone in a Nike sports kit, getting into a brand new Audi in front of a stadium advertising cheap ecigs?


But I do have an opinion.  I don't like ecigs and anyone who says they don't smell is suffering the same daft delusions as the hardened smokers who think they don't stink of smoke.  I had one sales rep come in to brief us as part of a tendering process, he gave us handouts he'd obviously had in his car while smoking for what must have been a very long time, they reeked so badly that everyone on the panel opened and shut again immediately because of the stench.  It was probably unfair on a good product but our first impression of it was a stinking presentation pack that we really objected to opening, it didn't make it to the second phase.

#3054542 Trolls in the house

Posted by ckn on 11 January 2015 - 02:36 PM



I think you must be thinking of rugby league.

No. Try not. Do... or do not. There is no try.


Now I think of it, Yoda is actually Neil Back.

#3053405 Trolls in the house

Posted by ckn on 08 January 2015 - 04:02 PM

I see us as missionaries of a sort, we welcome those poor unfortunates in, give them a good home while slowly aiming to reverse the brainwashing of decades of union.  Unfortunately, it does have side-effects as some of those people snap and end up wearing pink marigolds during their transition to the more entertaining code of rugby.


The trolls are fun though, I genuinely do wonder though about how bored these people really must be to pretend to like rugby league enough to get over 100 posts just to post dross on the cross-code forum.  Surely they have something better to do with their lives such as pleasuring themselves over the persistent repeats of union games on the sports channels.

#3050989 Whisky

Posted by ckn on 01 January 2015 - 10:41 PM

Has anyone on here ever tried Japanese whisky, I've read about them winning various awards but never given them a try?

There are some very nice ones, all depends on your taste though, if you only like Islay single malts then Japanese whisky will disappoint you. The best Japanese ones are all Speyside equivalents.  The one I did enjoy when offered was a Suntory, a bit light for my taste but still very nice.  In terms of sheer value for money though, it's a poor offering as you'll typically pay half again what you would for an equivalent Scottish whisky.

#3050458 2014

Posted by ckn on 30 December 2014 - 09:32 PM

With the lights starting to go dim on 2014, I thought a revival of the annual review thread would be appropriate.


After a shocking 2013, 2014 has been much, much better.


- Not a single funeral attended.  Not a single friend or family member died this year.  If any die in the 26.5 hours left of the year then I will get mightily annoyed at them for being so selfish.

- My wife is getting slightly better, nowhere near as bad as last year.  Still paying out about £1000 a month on things that the NHS should pay for.

- I started the year as one of those nasty, evil external contractors for the NHS that the media gets all upset about, even though I was on about 1/3 of the rate I charge private companies.  I was then made an offer to go permanent that I jumped at because I get a chance, and the remit, to fix a small bit of the NHS.  I suppose I'm one of those NHS non-clinical managers that gets whined about by the clueless but I'm earning now about 1/4 of my self-employed income and have already saved the NHS one hell of a lot of money in the short months since appointment.  Thankfully I got to cherry-pick the managers underneath me and they got to do the same with their staff meaning that those with the stubborn "that's not how it's done here" attitude just don't work for me.  The thing that still confuses me though given my self-employed history is that I get paid holidays, they actually pay me to not work for over a working month a year...

- My trusty steed, my Audi TT 3.2L, was taken away and shot at the knacker's yard in the summer.  The gearbox died and the price of a replacement went from £2000ish for an unproven 2nd-hand one (if it's 2nd hand then the original car must have died somehow which makes it suspicious) to £4500 for a new one.  That and other issues meant that it was almost worth the entire car's value to bring it back to a decent condition.  A damn shame as it was a good car and quite probably the best winter drive I've ever had.

- The sole holiday of the year was to Sorrento for our friends' wedding.  A fantastic holiday with some excellent people :)


#3048820 "The scrum is a shambles"

Posted by ckn on 24 December 2014 - 08:15 PM

On a similar topic, B O'D (who is a healthy lifestyle ambassador for Coca-Cola) is advocating skill over size in the backs.

He's right.  I've seen union scouts/coaches at the big union 7s kids tournaments selecting big lads that have few skills for trials while leaving the small lads with bags of skill unselected.  The view of many, mainly the thick forwards that dominate English union, is that you can be trained to be a decent player if you're physically big and fast with poor skills but it's far harder to take a skinny or slow skillful lad and make them fast and strong.



#3047888 Women in the Infantry

Posted by ckn on 21 December 2014 - 11:26 PM

Half the problem is the size of the radio and ECM kit; bulky and heavy is an understatement!

I think a mandatory test during procurement exercises for man-portable military should be the designers having to walk 20 miles with the kit as well as the typical squaddie layout.  That may make them think twice about using steel and consider using aluminium for most kit and titanium for the more expensive, costly and fragile stuff

#3047553 Rugby League virtually ignored at SPOTY - moans here please

Posted by ckn on 20 December 2014 - 08:49 PM

Eeee, when I were a lad I'd have given a lot to be virtually ignored by other folk.  Young folk these days don't know what it is to be ignored properly by the BBC, they even let rugby league players go on telly occasionally and allow them to do more than grunt a couple of syllables at a microphone in a bad Wigan accent.  We played proper rugby back then and the soft southerners ignored us completely, hoping we'd just go away and stop nicking their players.


Even then, we were spoiled, our grandfathers were properly ignored, to the BBC rugby league in those days was just a thing of folklore and legend played by funny northern folk and colonists that they used to scare their children:  "Watch just one game of rugby league and you'll wake up with a flat cap, unintelligible accent and a whippet then forced to work in t'pit".

#3047549 Trolls

Posted by ckn on 20 December 2014 - 08:29 PM

Nah, we don't exterminate trolls any more, we simply consign them to a job as John Inverdale's fluffer.  Human rights?  Trolls have none. ;)

#3045772 Have you "Made It" in Life

Posted by ckn on 16 December 2014 - 07:04 AM

Let me get this right. Your advice to an intelligent person with some issues is to become superstitious. How's that ever going to work?

No, many priests are excellent as councellors and do an excellent job in situations like that. No need to become religious, just someone who will listen.

#3045723 Have you "Made It" in Life

Posted by ckn on 15 December 2014 - 10:23 PM

I'll have stuff on ny conscience til the day I die. Some things I just can't shake off from decades ago: people I've meltdown. Lord to, people who have cared about me who I've rejected all sorts.

I think you may need a bit more help.  Just enough to help you come to terms with yourself.  Either professional or even religious, and that's said with me as a non-religious person.


I know that in my distant past I did a lot of things that I am ashamed about and wouldn't disclose publicly but the way I see it is that I've done far more in the plus column than the minus.  If someone were keeping an objective score, I rate myself as far enough in the positive that I can forgive myself for my long past misbehaviours.  It's a very powerful thing being able to forgive yourself and more than worth the effort in trying to achieve.

#3045476 UKIPpery

Posted by ckn on 15 December 2014 - 12:15 PM

When someone says that he or she intends to register a protest vote for the Monster Raving Loony Party, they get a laugh.



When someone says that he or she intends to register a protest vote for UKIP, all hell breaks out.


Why? Because all the slaggers-off know that, this time, it will actually make a difference.

There's a difference though.  A Monster Raving Loony vote is a laugh and really a throw-away on a party that's just in it for a joke.  A UKIP vote is a vote for a bunch xenophobic nutjobs who do a very inadequate job of hiding their prejudices and desire to take the UK so far right of the Tories that they make Cameron look like Michael Foot.  A UKIP vote is for fully privatising the NHS.  A UKIP vote is for xenophobia.  A UKIP vote is for removing every major employee protection.  A UKIP vote is for prejudice.