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Monday Open Thread

by Nomad Mon Dec 10th, 2012 at 11:33:46 AM EST

Clueful Open Thread


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Please consider yourself lucky if you don't know what this is about

"So, let me get this straight.

A couple of DJs in Australia phones up a hospital and a nurse who is working the switchboard puts them through to get some sensitive information. The hospital does NOT blame the nurse.

The newspapers in the UK then spend 2 days talking about how dumb the nurse must have been etc etc, burying the poor woman in very public humiliation for the entertainment of the public.

Nurse commits suicide.

The newspapers in the UK will now spend days telling everyone how terrible it was that the DJs in Australia drove the woman to suicide.

Did I miss something ?"

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Mon Dec 10th, 2012 at 11:42:29 AM EST
have to say about that? I suppose she will get expedited redress. Posthumously.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II
by eurogreen on Mon Dec 10th, 2012 at 11:51:51 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Presumably the point of the hoax was to make fun of how uptight the Brits can get about anything to do with the Royal Family. Sure, there are serious issues of breach of patient confidentiality involved, and presumably some hospital communications protocols where breached when the information was given out. Ms Saldanha cannot be expected to be an expert in all of this, and to transfer a phone call query in good faith is hardly a capital crime. We do not know Ms Saldanha's state of mind or what other factors may have lead to her death at this stage. Perhaps she feared official retribution or public vilification and humiliation. If so, and if she had any basis for this fear, then the British infatuation with the Royals really is part of the problem. A very minor incident followed by a tragedy has been blown up into an international incident and world-wide media sensation - perhaps because the media have something of a guilty conscience about some of their activities and methods. Perhaps because we all make minor mistakes that can (rarely) have horrific consequences. But the bottom line is that the Australian pranksters may have had a point: the Brits, or at least a part of their media ARE too uptight and need to lighten up rather a lot. Very little harm would have been done by the inadvertent disclosure of patient information had it not been for the the grossly disproportionate media response - perhaps resulting in the death of an innocent health worker. Strike another one down to the tabloidisation of the media and their need to demonize and "entertain" at someone elses expense.

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Mon Dec 10th, 2012 at 11:52:51 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The point of the hoax was to sell ads.
by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Mon Dec 10th, 2012 at 12:47:12 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The recorded call breached the Australian commercial radio code of practice.

You can't be me, I'm taken
by Sven Triloqvist on Mon Dec 10th, 2012 at 12:30:54 PM EST
[ Parent ]
that the code of practice is honoured more in the breach than the observance. This sort of stunt is their bread and butter.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II
by eurogreen on Mon Dec 10th, 2012 at 12:43:01 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Neither here nor there. The woman's suicide was, imo, down to British media behaviour

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Mon Dec 10th, 2012 at 12:46:19 PM EST
[ Parent ]
And the British media only could behave like that because before the Australian media had behaved as they behaved. Underlying both behaviours is the attitude that this "prank" is fun, and the person who falls into the trap is fair game.  
by Katrin on Mon Dec 10th, 2012 at 01:46:36 PM EST
[ Parent ]
And on almost every one of the tens of thousands of occasions since radio and telephone came together in an unholy comedic alliance where a similar stunt has been carried out, it has been taken as the humorous event that it was.

I contend that what made this different was the fact that the British media decided that, on this one occasion, the person who received the call was a treasonous dunce who deserved repeated front page banner headline public naming and shaming.

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Mon Dec 10th, 2012 at 01:54:35 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Was it that venomous?
by Katrin on Mon Dec 10th, 2012 at 02:00:02 PM EST
[ Parent ]
tbh, I wasn't really paying any attention, it was just a royal story.

However I caught a couple of radio comments where it was obvious that considerable scorn was being poured on the women involved.

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Mon Dec 10th, 2012 at 02:14:43 PM EST
[ Parent ]
public naming and shaming

Was she publicly named and shamed? I missed that bit of the story, then.

I distribute. You re-distribute. He gives your hard-earned money to lazy scroungers. -- JakeS

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Mon Dec 10th, 2012 at 02:07:48 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Again, I don't know, but the way these stories work I presumed the names of the nurses would come out within a couple of days or so.

Such things do not stay secret.

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Mon Dec 10th, 2012 at 02:16:30 PM EST
[ Parent ]
On newspaper web sites that I saw, she was named and a photo published. I saw no scorn, but I wasn't reading the usual suspects.
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Mon Dec 10th, 2012 at 03:06:57 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I didn't see scorn either, but then I read relatively sensible outlets. (At least by MSM standards.)

Problem is, if no scorn from either press or manudjment (as the hospital claims) then suicide by someone who is married with two kids and isn't even British seems like a very peculiar over-reaction.

by ThatBritGuy (thatbritguy (at) googlemail.com) on Mon Dec 10th, 2012 at 03:39:05 PM EST
[ Parent ]
What the Daily Liars and red-tops said I don't know. But the hospital and the great dead weight of the hierarchy above... I don't know either, but I suspect.

And not being British but doing one's best may have something to do with it.

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Mon Dec 10th, 2012 at 04:06:47 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I've seen references to considerable scorn in the red tops.

A big point here is that the media once again let SO14 (the Royal Protection squad) off the hook again... since they are supposed to be responsible for vetting all contacts with the royals.

by Metatone (metatone [a|t] gmail (dot) com) on Mon Dec 10th, 2012 at 04:41:57 PM EST
[ Parent ]
ell, the newspapers and the police are hand in glove. Each uses the other for their own purposes

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Mon Dec 10th, 2012 at 05:05:05 PM EST
[ Parent ]
i didn't see the red tops' abuse, but there was something fishy about the death's report, the conspicuous-by-its-absence use of the word 'suicide'.

it's been tiptoed around, without reference to an autopsy, a coroner's report, a method of suicide -if it was, etc.

it's been cloaked by a curtain of propriety...

the least believable press conference was from the hospital spokesman, who referred to the support she was given.

the dj's took their time to appear, but when they did, deftly apportioned some or all the blame to those upstairs at the station, who had the responsibility to choosing which bits were aired. when i remarked to my SU that they hadn't really come out and said 'we're sorry', rather than how tragic it was and how sad they were. she said they will have been advised to avoid saying that in case of civil suits later, where it would have been an admission of culpability.

honesty has a price, literally...

the other dot that won't connect is the face photo of the deceased the first few days (until today) was one of those weird feral-looking shots that made her look androgonously psycho, red-eye and all.

today they had finally found a better shot, which made her look like a totally different person, ethereal, a bit like an illustration from an edwardian romantic novel, very pretty and feminine.

very strange story all round, sorry to hear about the naming and shaming from the gutter press, seems like they never learn about their bullying can cost people their sanity.

i felt sorry for the dj's, and wonder what career they will have now. they had no malice in them, just airheads at play.

people will be more careful about pranking, which i suspect is less of the core problem than the bubble frank's comment refers to, especially considering in a democracy evolved beyond monarchy there would not have been this fetishisation of the 'royal' baby any more than any other. this whole story brings that weirdness that the cult of monarchy is into sharp relief.

"We can all be prosperous but we can't all be rich." Ian Welsh

by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Mon Dec 10th, 2012 at 06:35:34 PM EST
[ Parent ]
New Yorker  - John Cassidy - George Osborne's Game: From Austerity to Cruelty

Over at our Daily Comment blog, I've put up a longer post on the latest failure of austerity economics: the admission by George Osborne, the British Chancellor of the Exchequer, that, after two and half years of furious budget-cutting, he's still failing to meet his own fiscal targets.

One thing I didn't mention in that piece is that Osborne isn't merely reaffirming his commitment to the deflationary economics of the early nineteen-thirties. He's coupling it with an embrace of Reaganite trickle-down economics of the nineteen-eighties and the even harsher Benthamite economics of the eighteen-thirties. Earlier this year, he cut the top tax rate from fifty per cent to forty-five per cent, claiming that Britain's highest earners needed incentivizing. Now, with roughly one in twelve working-age Britons out of a job, he's cutting the value of unemployment benefits--a move that harkens back to the infamous Poor Law of 1834, which was designed to stigmatize paupers and vagrants.

Cutting the value of unemployment benefits won't make much of an impact on the deficit. The savings will amount to about four billion pounds in a total budget of about seven hundred billion pounds. But the cut will be felt by the jobless and their families, many of whom already live in poverty or near poverty. In the United Kingdom, unlike in the United States, the level of unemployment benefits isn't linked to the recipient's wages in his or her last job. Single people get a maximum of seventy-one pounds (about $115) a week, and couples get up to a hundred and twelve pounds (about $180). For decades, governments of both parties have raised the payments in line with inflation, so that their purchasing power remains steady. But with inflation currently running at more than 2.5 per cent, Osborne has ruled that over the next three years increases in benefits will be limited to one per cent. That might not sound like a big difference, but over three years it could well add up to a five per cent drop in purchasing power.



keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Mon Dec 10th, 2012 at 11:47:24 AM EST
Pink News - Catholic bishop: David Cameron is `devoid of moral competence' for supporting same-sex marriage

A Scottish Catholic bishop has condemned David Cameron for being "devoid of moral competence" after the PM stated that churches should be allowed to provide same-sex marriages.

The Rt Rev Joseph Devine, Bishop of Motherwell, believes the prime minister is now "out of his depth" and can no longer be trusted by Christians.



keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Mon Dec 10th, 2012 at 11:50:43 AM EST
Telegraph - Most parents don't want gay children, claims Tory MP David Davies

Mr Davies made the claim as he spoke out against David Cameron's plans to allow same-sex couples to marry, including in some churches.

Mr Davies, the MP for Monmouth, said the plan was "barking mad" and would cost the Conservative Party many of its traditional supporters.

In an interview with BBC Wales, he went on to say that "most parents" would prefer their children not to be homosexual.

most people would prefer not to have Tory governments, but sometimes it just happens

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Mon Dec 10th, 2012 at 11:54:52 AM EST
[ Parent ]
And HE should know...

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Mon Dec 10th, 2012 at 11:55:34 AM EST
[ Parent ]
As the Pope has apparently said, atheists pick and choose their morals. So today I will be frowning on child abuse, supporting a woman's right to choose and not having a problem with homosexuality

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Mon Dec 10th, 2012 at 12:03:07 PM EST
[ Parent ]
sounds like an expert.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II
by eurogreen on Mon Dec 10th, 2012 at 11:55:52 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Maria Miller confirms religious groups will not have to conduct gay marriages | Society | guardian.co.uk
The minister for women and equalities has assured MPs that the government's plans for same-sex marriages will ensure that faith organisations do not have to conduct gay ceremonies amid fierce criticism from Conservative MPs over the idea.

I'm confused. Currently, if a (het) couple shows up in some random church, is that church obliged to marry them? Legally speaking?

I would have thought that there would be at least some simulacrum of a perfunctory eligibility check (Have you been confirmed? No? Baptised? No? Oh never mind).

Sure, I'm guessing that, in general, churches are eager to perform marriages. But obliged?

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Mon Dec 10th, 2012 at 12:09:55 PM EST
no, they aren't. In fact the more pretty and archetypal a church is, the more barriers they throw in the way.

I'm sure there are some gay people who are daft enough to want to get married in church, but I can't for the life of me imagine why they'd want the endorsement of an institution which so obviously detests their very existence.

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Mon Dec 10th, 2012 at 12:17:34 PM EST
[ Parent ]
 why should people be prevented from getting their jollies in their own way? That smacks of intolerance, Helen. After all, Fred Phelps notwithstanding, there is no empirical proof that God hates fags.

I imagine they wouldn't have too much trouble finding a church ready to marry them. Except for those churches which practice democratic centralism according to the Bolshevik model (i.e. top-down decision making). i.e. a Catholic couple might have to get married in an Anglican church, or even a Protestant one.

Anyway, I have a problem with the very idea of any sort of religious organisation performing any sort of legally-sanctioned union. And another problem with the government interfering with what consenting adults do in church.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Mon Dec 10th, 2012 at 12:30:45 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I agree, even if there were a god, I doubt she'd hate fags. but the earthly political institutions which claim to minister in her name certainly do hate anyone and anything which challenges their claims to dogmatic purity

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Mon Dec 10th, 2012 at 12:45:30 PM EST
[ Parent ]
There are a fair number of churches that welcome GLBT community. Example:

http://www.ucc.org/lgbt/ona.html

by asdf on Mon Dec 10th, 2012 at 02:16:55 PM EST
[ Parent ]
eurogreen:
Currently, if a (het) couple shows up in some random church, is that church obliged to marry them?

No.

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Mon Dec 10th, 2012 at 01:15:37 PM EST
[ Parent ]
As you will have realised, I was just establishing that no special law or regulation is required to enable churches to decline to marry anyone at all, black white gay straight dog or horse, without providing any justification, as it is a discretionary activity.

i.e. it's a conservative scare story, if there were any doubt.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Mon Dec 10th, 2012 at 05:23:18 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Oh yea, that's for certain

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Tue Dec 11th, 2012 at 02:55:01 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Full report. Highlights:
Q3 Do you have a favorable or unfavorable opinion of Stephen Colbert?

Favorable........................................................ 30%
Unfavorable .................................................... 32%
Not sure .......................................................... 38%

[...]

Q13 Given the choices of Stephen Colbert, Jeff Duncan, Trey Gowdy, Henry McMaster, Mick Mulvaney, Jenny Sanford, Mark Sanford, Tim Scott, and Joe Wilson, who would you most like to see Nikki Haley appoint to replace Jim DeMint?

Stephen Colbert.............................................. 20%
Jeff Duncan..................................................... 5%
Trey Gowdy..................................................... 14%
Henry McMaster ............................................. 8%
Mick Mulvaney ................................................ 4%
Jenny Sanford................................................. 11%
Mark Sanford .................................................. 8%
Tim Scott......................................................... 15%
Joe Wilson ...................................................... 5%
Someone else/Not sure .................................. 11%

by gk (g k quattro due due sette "at" gmail.com) on Mon Dec 10th, 2012 at 01:22:43 PM EST
Marijuana for recreational use became legal in Colorado Monday, when the governor took the procedural step of declaring the voter-approved change part of the state constitution.

Colorado became the second state after Washington to allow pot use without a doctor's recommendation. Both states prohibit public use of the drug, and commercial sales in Colorado and Washington won't be permitted until after regulations are written next year.


http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/12/10/pot-legalized-in-colorado_0_n_2272678.html
by asdf on Mon Dec 10th, 2012 at 04:01:18 PM EST
Today the big argument is about how you define "driving while impaired" when you're a doper.
by asdf on Tue Dec 11th, 2012 at 03:44:56 PM EST
[ Parent ]
@MigeruBlogger
Migeru Shimbun is out! http://paper.li/MigeruBlogger/1351816577 ... ▸ Top stories today via @faisalislam


I distribute. You re-distribute. He gives your hard-earned money to lazy scroungers. -- JakeS
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Mon Dec 10th, 2012 at 04:23:09 PM EST


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