So what does the name tee2i mean?

Well it's shorthand for the independence index. This blog takes independence seriously. There's no problem, in principle, with a country being part of a confederation or partnership, the UK is part of NATO. But the EU is a failing confederation and our independence was threatened by membership, so we voted to leave. There's also the independence of thought which must, obviously, lead to free speech. The popularity of cancel culture must be challenged. Also politics is more than about leaning left or rightward on any issue, it's far more subtle than that. It's all down to the quality of life so let's aim high. It's our right to do so.

Suburban utilitarianism

Britain's legacy

Keep Britain TidyKeep Britain Tidy

There are two words that are rarely heard in government circles These are: happiness and beauty. The two go together. If one lives in beautiful surroundings one tends to have a greater chance of happiness. Why is it that in one of the richest countries in the world many of us live in run down, litter-strewn environments where ugly concrete buildings prevail? The argument is that there is not the money, that employee costs are too great, so that skilled workers cost too much, that money must be spent on schoolsandhospitals and that there is no money left for fripperies such as aesthetics. The Victorians built for glory and many of our towns would look even worse if they hadn't built fine municipal buildings. We still retain Areas Of Natural Beauty, mostly in country areas. Here we see sensitive building, clean streets even lovely red telephone boxes. Some city centres have been renovated and attractive buildings retained, with areas to sit and enjoy the sights. However, most of us live outside the city centres in the suburbs and these are becoming grim, grubby and grey, attractive housing is being 'modernised' and charming features such as our red telephone boxes being retained only in tourist areas.

Fauxtography

Archived Stop Press article

Jamal and Muhammad al-DurrahJamal and Muhammad al-Durrah

The British media have been very concerned recently about the manipulation of images, phone-ins etc. The famous reversing of the Queen's entrance into a photo shoot, making it seem that she was storming off in a huff, resulted in a reluctant resignation; the insertion of a photo of an MP into a photo-shoot that he missed has been discussed at length. Even the BBC's positive coverage of Europe has been queried (though Mark Mardell, the Europe journalist, has been allowed to twitter in a jolly, optimistic way about all things EU). However, as usual, our media is extremely parochial, as a similar story with immense implications, has barely been mentioned in the mainstream British media.

The appeal to a case that rivals Dreyfus is being heard today in Paris.This is a cause célèbre has been quietly raging over the past 7 years. It relates to whether the film of the shooting dead of a Palestinian boy in 2000 September was faked. The photos of Muhammad al-Durrah and his father cowering against a bullet-marked wall in Gaza have become iconic, similar to that of the napalm-burned little girl running naked in Vietnam. There is even a memorial statue in Mali. If the incident has indeed been faked this would be a massive scandal around the world ( though perhaps not in Britain).

Curve Ball

Archived Stop Press article

Curve BallCurve Ball We know now that the USA wanted to go to war in Iraq. They had to make a case for war and the 'jewel in the crown' of their rationale was an Iraqi called Rafid Ahmed Alwan, codenamed 'Curve Ball' CBS 60 minutes have recently shown a programme depicting the sorry tale. He wanted to get a green card in order to live in Germany so he concocted the fake story of the Mobile Biological Weapons Programme, which he told to German Intelligence. He said he was a top chemical engineer who had been the director of a biological weapons facility. He named to site and described how lorries would enter one building, fill up with biological materials and exit at the other end. He said 12 people had died from a spill. He did not want to be interviewed by the Americans and never was. The Americans wanted to use this information and the Germans wrote to George Tennant saying that they could but emphasised that the information was unverified. Mr.Tennant said he never got the letter. MI6 had also evidently informed the CIA in 2002 that the evidence was probably fabricated. Curve ball's information was relayed to the world by the duped Colin Powell as fact. The same 'facts' appeared in Tony Blair's 'dodgy dossier'.

A shared past, and future?

From 1932 until 1968 the Portuguese were ruled by their dictator Salazar.Time moves on. Portugal is a democracy and now it's the turn of the Portuguese to have the EU presidency and they see absolutely no problem with Zimbabwean dictator Robert Mugabe attending the EU-Africa summit this December.This despite the EU travel ban on him visiting any of the 27 EU countries.

Remembrance Day

Poppy Appeal

The poppy of remembranceThe poppy of remembrance

I was born after the Second World War and can remember that, right into the 1950s, there were bomb-damaged buildings in the town where I grew up. I can also remember the nervous ticks and odd behaviour of some of the 'survivors', the walking wounded who lived in that town. This war was to me so far in the past that I assumed the emotions of my parents' generation would never be felt by mine; then there was the Falklands War. This woke me up and I have been aware of the role of the armed forces in the service of this country ever since. So please take a look at this site.

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