Why is public money being doled out to politicians in Lichfield?
This week, Lichfield District Council’s cabinet approved a pilot to hand £14,100 of public money to councillors to dish out at their discretion with a scintilla of oversight that leaves the scheme wide open to abuse, in a step that seems to be a solution without a problem. In the report to cabinet, a lack […]
FOI Hate: Response from Staffordshire County Council
Following my letter to my Staffordshire county councillor, Terry Finn, I received the response below. I’ve some comments below. Councillor Finn has asked me to respond to your recent communication. Thank you for your comments which have been noted. Shame my councillor couldn’t be bothered to respond himself. He could have at least responded with his own thoughts and […]
Questioning Staffordshire on why they hate FOI
After reading on Ampp3d that Staffordshire County Council were whinging about spending 0.00003% of their budget answering FOI requests, and checking out their whinge myself, I decided to write to my County Councillor (Terry Finn) to ask why SCC are attempting to demonise users of this critically important transparency law. I made a point of […]
When secularism is not secularism: when it’s French (or European)
It’s disappointing that the European Court of Hunan Rights has upheld the French ban on full-face veils. Some call this a ‘victory for secularism’ but it is no such thing. Secularism is about equality for all. Freedom of religion, and freedom from religion. It is not about curtailing individual liberties for some misguided notion about […]
Isn’t owning your own home a neoliberal ideal?
Why is the UK so obsessed with home ownership? I’ve yet to hear anyone outline benefits to home ownership that aren’t subjective. So why this desire to make sure people can ‘get on the property ladder’? Is it because the rental sector is risky? Then subject it to stricter regulation. Does it provide more stability? Possibly, but […]
Google censors your music. Shits.
I recently ripped a bunch of my CDs to my PC again with the express intent of putting them onto Google Play so I could play them anywhere. Having listened to them this week I was shocked to discover that Google is censoring my music! Whilst listening to The Willing Well III – Apollo II: The […]
Stop whining about privacy: YOU are the one GIVING it away
Following Facebook’s announcement of their “Home” app, many people seem to have read Om Malik’s melodramatic cry over spilt milk: Om says, “But there is a bigger worry. The phone’s GPS can send constant information back to the Facebook servers, telling it your whereabouts at any time.” Yes, it can Om, you’re right. And how […]
Patent wars: the evil afflicting tech that will only harm consumers
Being a follower of the ‘patent war’ between mobile/tablet manufacturers recently I’m disappointed at today’s news that Samsung has been ordered to pay £1.5bn in damages to Apple. I’ve long been of the opinion that the patent system, especially in America, is fundamentally flawed and this case is another example of why. First thing to […]
Finally, I plucked up the courage to purchase my shiney new Samsung Galaxy S3 (more on that later) and whilst reading the latest news on the Guardian app I noticed that they (or their ad server people) still don’t know how to do ad targeting properly. See my screenshot of the app below, taken on […]
A quick rant about Local People
Yes I’m biased because I run Lichfield Live which is obviously a competing service but I’m still gonna whinge about Local People. This week Lichfield Live launched a business directory, in part because the alternative is so out of date! Today I’m annoyed because they’ve decided to be all community-hugging and have the residents of […]