BBC BLOGS - Newsnight: From the web team
« Previous | Main | Next »

Wednesday 14 March 2012

ADMIN USE ONLY | 14:39 UK time, Wednesday, 14 March 2012

Why isn't big business investing in UK plc and what can the chancellor do about it in next week's budget?

Plus we speak to Sir Michael Wilshaw, the chief inspector of schools, ahead of his first biannual report on the state of our education system. There have been alarming recent reports about literacy and numeracy standards in Britain, so what will the man charged with setting and monitoring school standards do about this?

A year after the Syrian uprising began, we'll be looking at the make up of the Free Syrian Army and considering their prospects for ousting President Assad.

And David Cameron and Barack Obama shoot the breeze while watching college basketball players shoot hoops. They seem best pals - but why aren't the Tories more pally with the American right?

Comments

  • Comment number 1.

  • Comment number 2.

    NATO Proxies behind Syria Massacre
    http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=29765

    "There’s ample evidence from official statements from the Arab League observer mission, from the Israeli media, that there are terrorist organizations involved in killing civilians and this, in a very cynical mode, provides the justification for the so-called international community to blame Bashar al-Assad when in fact these civilian casualties were ordered by foreign forces."

  • Comment number 3.

    "And David Cameron and Barack Obama shoot the breeze while watching college basketball players shoot hoops. They seem best pals - but why aren't the Tories more pally with the American right?"

    Because three out of the four GOP candidates have openly stated that they want war with Iran?

    (oh!, and of course, we are not allowed to mention the 4th candidate on here)

  • Comment number 4.

    "Plus we speak to Sir Michael Wilshaw, the chief inspector of schools, ahead of his first biannual report on the state of our education system. There have been alarming recent reports about literacy and numeracy standards in Britain, so what will the man charged with setting and monitoring school standards do about this?"


    Where are the locations in the UK that have alarming levels of literacy and numeracy? Could they be in inner city areas (like London) where most newly arrived immigrants are located?

    This is what someone else wrote on these blogs about the same subject a while ago...

    "Briefly, the US and EU populations are changing demographically, i.e.
    genetically, as a function of long-term differential and dysgenic fertility (the birth rates in different sectors basically). There are more births in the lower cognitive part of the distribution and less in the higher part of the distribution. Educating females and their working professionally has accelerated this as it delays motherhood - note this did not happen till the 60s, female liberation is thus subversive. Given the high correlation between general intelligence and SES (and thus GDP) this had led to national decline in the liberal democracies. As it is genetic, it can't be rectified by pouring in money e.g. by teaching, as one can't raise intelligence by education, one can only equip it.

    Intelligence is bred. Most people can't grasp this. It is too radical for libertarians who ironically are natural Lysenkoists. When you do grasp this, you will see that I have in fact covered all this above, but it's been missed because of erroneous assumptions by readers. Most people will miss it, or say they don't believe it, but they will just be reporting their erroneous beliefs without knowing this."

    And this...

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Beveridge

    "Thus the decade following the First World War was characterised by evolutionary and, especially eugenic thinking. Indeed, when William Beveridge (a life-long supporter of the Eugenics Society) was appointed Director of the London School of Economics in 1919 he resolved to bring about the "application of biology to human society" by the creation of a Department of Social Biology. The syllabus for the proposed Department was outlined by Beveridge as: "Instinct in Man, Inherited and Acquired Characteristics, Quantity and Quality of Populations and Racial and Economic Tests of Fitness ....
    In making "quantity and quality of populations" central to his proposed new academic discipline, Beveridge was acknowledging what had now bec

  • Comment number 5.

    In making "quantity and quality of populations" central to his proposed new academic discipline, Beveridge was acknowledging what had now become a matter of general, and not merely eugenic concern: the problem of differential fertility. Nor was this concern confined to those on the political "right". Beveridge’s own Chairman of Governors at LSE, Sidney Webb, speaking for the Fabian Society, had told the National Birth Rate Commission in 1917 that rates and taxes fell most heavily upon the classes who should have most children but presented no impediment to "the thriftless and irresponsible, the reckless and short-sighted of all grades" with the result that "the community now breeds fastest from its least desirable stocks" . And Karl Pearson, a Fabian with Marxist economic leanings, claimed that the most fertile sector of the population produced fifty per cent of the next generation . The much delayed publication, in 1923, of the results of the 1911 Fertility of Marriage Census showed that, despite increasing resort to birth control by successive marriage cohorts since 1870, there was a persisting social class differential in birth rates. The problem was now officially recognised. It was also set to music. "There’s nothing surer", ran the lyrics of one of the most popular songs of the early 1920s, "The rich get richer and the poor get - children" .

    http://www.galtoninstitute.org.uk/Newsletters/GINL9603/social_context.htm


    Throwing money at this problem won't achieve anything.

  • Comment number 6.

    Why isn't big business investing in UK plc and what can the chancellor do about it in next week's budget?

    No doubt a specially selected panel will be convened to ''discuss" or maybe simply a 'guest' to analyse?

    If not this...

    http://www.recruiter.co.uk/uk-unemployment-figures-again-hint-at-jobless-slowdown/1013173.article

    vs.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-17364461

    Guessing the Recruiter won't be invited on the panel.

    'so what will the man charged with setting and monitoring school standards do about this?'

    Guessing 'Education, Education, Education' won't be the main topic after all these years, either?

  • Comment number 7.

    Unsurprisingly, the opposite effect (to dumbing down) is happening at the other end of the spectrum…

    The rise of the overclass
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/financialcrisis/9027846/The-rise-of-the-overclass.html


    Murray exposes how the new United States upper class, which he labels a “cognitive elite”, has developed an hereditary stranglehold over the top professions and management positions. The brightest people tend to marry each other, then ensure that their offspring get to the best schools and universities, with the result that, to quote Murray: “The parents of the upper-middle class now produce a disproportionate number of the smartest children.”

  • Comment number 8.

    Iranaphobia

    Funny BBC didn't report the israeli internet warfare team that openly stated it targeted not only BBC but other uk media? Even when i exposed them under sustained attack [i even had strange visitors to my house pretending to be 'lost'] nothing was ever said.

    So more planted stories telling us what to think

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-17365416

  • Comment number 9.

    19 GUN SALUTE FOR DAVE - HOW POIGNANT

    Wasn't that the number of guns our squaddies had, between them, on invading Johnnie Foreigner Land?

    Did you all watch the Channel 5 program on the Falklands Fiasco? We only won because we had, previously, sold them DUD BOMBS! The Irony Lady!!!!!!

    Rule Britannia – but only by default.

  • Comment number 10.

    A QUESTION FOR THE "COGNITIVE ELITE" (#7)

    Does cleverness equate to wisdom?

  • Comment number 11.

    Why isn't big business investing ... whoa ... stop right there.

    The truly relevant question is why are'nt small and medium sized (SME) enterprises investing?

    SME's are the real engine of the economy in England, despite the almost unbeliveable fact that SME's have obstacle after obstacle placed in their way by the 'officialdom' in all its malignant guises.

    I have been to Canada on business and the attitude of the authorities there towards SME's is diametrically opposite to what we have here in England, where SMEs are almost despised by officialdom.

    Want to know why there is very little real economic growth in England?

    Then look no further.

  • Comment number 12.

    Newsnight cannot be bothered or is it just assumed?

    Sir Michael Wilshaw, the chief inspector of schools FOR ENGLAND ONLY.

  • Comment number 13.

    Newsnight asks why aren't the Tories more pally with the American right?

    Answer - because they do not want to be associated with losers.

    However, in the next but one US Presidential election, the Republicans will put up a much stronger field of possible candidates, so then the Tories may be more pally.

    Simple really.

  • Comment number 14.

    To the Newsnight team:

    IT ISN'T UK PLC!!!!!!!!!!

    I know that Peston uses this description regularly, but he's wrong. "UK plc" gives a totally false impression of what a country is all about, and panders to a certain political agenda based on an untruth. Apart from anything else, a PLC can "downsize" and get rid of surplus staff. The possible means for downsizing a country's population are normally frowned upon in the civilised world.

    Another point is that companies regularly go bankrupt and are liquidated - the factory becomes empty or even demolished, and the workforce disappears. As, say, the history of Argentina shows, this does not normally happen with countries.

    http://dontcompromise.askeurope.com/2011/12/08/country-still-not-a-company/

    http://www.taxresearch.org.uk/Blog/2009/07/14/a-country-is-not-a-company/

    So please Auntie Beeb, stick to information and not misinformation!

  • Comment number 15.

    On Tonight's programme we'll be inviting Chucka Umunna to join us in sneering at George Osborne.
    Then we'll be joined by Stephen Twigg who'll be helping us sneer at Michael Gove and implying that Gove solely is responsible for the failure of education policy that has led to illiteracy, innumeracy and unemployabllity of British youth.
    Later we'll be sneering at Cameron and Obama and insisting that everything they do and say is programmed, cynical and insincere and nothing about them is genuine (because we tend to judge other people by our own behaviour).

  • Comment number 16.

    @14 addendum. In fact, "Why isn't big business investing in UK plc ...?" is a loaded question which assumes a falsehood*. It is on a par with "Have you stopped beating your wife yet?"

    * At least one falsehood actually, given the recent news from Nissan in Sunderland:

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-17266087

    So, the first part of your programme needs to be rewritten - you have just over three hours! ;-D

  • Comment number 17.

    ABOVE ALL WE SHALL BE SNEERING AT THE GRAVITAS-SEEKER, THE VISUALLY IMPAIRED AND the DRIVEN-HALF-MAD-ALREADY LICENCE-PAYER (# 14/15/16)

    Timely comment. (But you know the problem with Free Speech.)

  • Comment number 18.

    Sasha #16

    Jaguar Land Rover has just announced big investment in its Halewood ( former Ford Escort ) plant on Merseyside with the creation of an alleged 1000 new jobs, although the GM Astra factory at Ellesmere Port is still under threat of closure. It would appear that the bulk of the parts for the assembly of the Astra come from eastern Europe, with other basic parts from China and the USA. Although labour costs are lower than in the rest of GM plants in Europe I suspect that transport costs could be the deciding factor. They were planning an electric Astra but it would appear to have been still born, as perhaps the fact that Nissan's Leaf has only sold low hundreds what's the point. However, both Nissan and LRJ must know that the end of the Co2 Climate Scam is about to implode on its own intellectual dishonesty, and perhaps only a matter of time before a key political player seriously suggests repealing the 2008 Climate Change Act ! ( Could the 2015 election be fought on it ? )

  • Comment number 19.

    @17 "the DRIVEN-HALF-MAD-ALREADY LICENCE-PAYER"

    I know how you feel Barrie.

    Seeing official (and unofficial) misinformation all the time is very bad for my temper and inner peace. There are far too few sources one can trust. I would love to give up news (and this blog) and go to a place "where life is beautiful all the time".

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hnzHtm1jhL4

    But to end on a more hopeful note, this always makes me feel better, even if it is only a fantasy - and I do love Tchaikovsky!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vnPvbfogeSI

  • Comment number 20.

    I'm sorry Nolly, I don't agree with you on the climate issue, although I do think that lots of policy doesn't make sense. For example, there is no point in limiting carbon emissions in the UK or EU whilst importing vast amounts of goods made with dirty coal energy from China. At the very least we should put a suitable import tariff on such imported goods. In fact, given the unfair nature of trade with China due to their quasi slave labour practices and currency manipulations, I would go much further.

    However, science isn't democratic, and to understand of the complexities of the climate issue, you need to grapple with some thermodynamics. In particular, it is important to consider entropy and phase change issues.

    The link below is to my provisional considered opinion. I'm sure you won't like it, but agree or disagree, you and I approach issues from a different angle. I DON'T have the answers, but I know enough to know how difficult the questions are.

    http://livemind.org.uk/Climate_Thermodynamics/

  • Comment number 21.

  • Comment number 22.

    I WAS ONCE A WARMIST ! ( back in the early 1990s )

    Perhaps the main problem facing our future democratic freedom here in the UK is that most of the key political players are mostly " so far up their own self important backsides " that they can never admit their ideological mistakes. I suppose the above scenario applies just as much to teachers and other alleged well educated people who pushed the Co2 Climate scam all those years, its all part of the quasi-religion ?

  • Comment number 23.

    I TOO WAS A WARMIST (Nolly and Sasha)

    But once I began to AWAKEN to just how 'unbelievably' corrupt and perverse the influential individuals, on this benighted planet, have become, my starting point for all 'truth' is to presume it hides a lie.

    Ironically, whether the CO2 component of the (accepted) greenhouse effect is high or low, the HUMAN PERVERSITY FACTOR IS ORDERS OF MAGNITUDE GREATER. So emit and be damned/blessed; we ordinary folk CAN NO MORE REIN-IN OUR MADMEN THAN WE CAN THE CLIMATE.

    Change is coming - it has to. Not Dave's idea of change, something more fundamental, that poor Dave can ever tap into. Those who have the vision to surf a tsunami might find 'high ground'. With luck, the Daves will not make it . . . I too love Tchaikovsky

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vnPvbfogeSI

  • Comment number 24.

    Sasha #20 again

    I did read your link but your alleged not qualified but said to be well swatted up guy who wrote the link perhaps foolishly went on to mention VENUS, which totally undermines his argument. Perhaps he has not noticed that Venus is far closer to the SUN than the earth and therefore expects to be far hotter due to the closer proximity of the Sun's radiation source. Anybody who was brought up with a coal fire or for that matter one of the old type radiant gas fires knows full well that if you move away from it gets far cooler !

    There is also no point putting import tariffs on stuff from China since it could hurt our economy more if companies like LRJ lose their key growing export market. Oh nearly forgot to mention that we have already lost the wings for 42 Airbuses due to the stupid EU Co2 trading rules on international airlines !

  • Comment number 25.

  • Comment number 26.

    barrie

    Ref: Liar Flyer

    Have you taken your (legitimate) complaint to the court ECHR?

  • Comment number 27.

    ECHR (#26)

    No. My gut instinct is that, just as the EU generally stitches us up DIRECTLY, it is probable that, in matters of Westminster law-braking, EU has no power (competence) hence an INDIRECT stitch-up of the ordinary man.

    I did contact Hannan – guess his answer.

    Informed advice gratefully accepted.

  • Comment number 28.

  • Comment number 29.

  • Comment number 30.

    Who of you believe the faux debate on NN tonight?

  • Comment number 31.

    Michael Wilshaw pontificating about the teaching of reading. This from a man whose career was made in secondary not primary education. A history teacher before headship. What does he know? Just a darling of the Tory party is sufficient qualification I suppose.

  • Comment number 32.

    In years past children were not dealing with computer games, 24 hour TV, iPhones, mp3, etc., parents both working or not working at all. They weren't constantly measured and teachers weren't constantly nagged at by people with political axes to grind.
    Speech on public media is poorly constructed and no example to young viewers.
    The growing awareness of insufficient employment feeds back into motivation in schools. We were told some years ago that 'We are educating our young people to have aspirations we cannot satisfy' the wording may not be exact but that is the general idea. We used to ration grammar school access with 11 plus and few of those went to university. We also undervalue manual work and our advertisers dangle lifestyles beyond the reach of many people and deliberately try to create dissatisfaction. The mish mash of messages has no coherence so whatever develops can be declared wrong.

  • Comment number 33.

    Yo Paul...roll on the blues

  • Comment number 34.

    Tim's report clearly showed that a lot of people do NOT want Assad to go......

    Now, more pressing matters - the UK is going to lose its AAA Credit Rating.
    http://uk.reuters.com/article/2012/03/14/uk-ratings-fitch-idUKBRE82D1ES20120314

  • Comment number 35.

    SYNTHETIC PHONICS? SYNTHESISED PHONEMES? COCKEYED SYNTAX? IS IT ME?

    Surely synthetic phonics are an end product (such as words) arising from synthesised phonemes? Should not the process be phoneme synthesis? Wo' ev ah!

    When Emily said Mr Wonderful intended to remodel education, my heart sank. Bad enough that no one has yet acknowledged that schooling is NOT WHAT NATURE WOULD DO; so much worse that every wally who gets the chance, feels they - above all others - know how to do it right. Remember Balls?

  • Comment number 36.

    SYNTHETIC PHONICS? SYNTHESISED PHONEMES? COCKEYED SYNTAX? IS IT ME?

    Surely synthetic phonics are an end product (such as words) arising from synthesised phonemes? Should not the process be phoneme synthesis? Wo' ev ah!

    When Emily said Mr Wonderful intended to remodel education, my heart sank. Bad enough that no one has yet acknowledged that schooling is NOT WHAT NATURE WOULD DO; so much worse that every wally who gets the chance, feels they - above all others - know how to do it right.

  • Comment number 37.

    "CAMERON - LIKE BLAIR BEFORE HIM" (#29 link quote)

    And there you have it. Dave is not concerned with us - Dave is deeply interested in being Dave - Super Dave. He is an immature, demon driven boy, unable to resist all the banal trappings of the typical rogue state - America. Yes - Dave is Heir to Blair. In thrall to the Great Satan, as Bluebottle to Neddy Seagoon; and as much use to the improvement of ordinary life, in decadent Britain, as a marshmallow bidet.

    Weep.

  • Comment number 38.

    Information and education... and free speech.

    'Who of you believe the faux debate on NN tonight?'

    As some are still trying to believe NN even on when 'tonight' might fall, I'd tend to err on caution across the board in 'debate'... or panel, report, analysis, expert guests, effective sneerers...

  • Comment number 39.

    Alright, who complained about this ?

    58. At 20:09 12th Mar 2012, museV wrote:
    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain

    It is wrong to remove a comment just because someone (anonymously) takes a dislike to it, that kind of behavior is the thin end of the wedge.

    If you don't like what someone posts then you should have the bottle to come out and say it and argue your point.

    Does this kind of thing happen in the NN editing suite, a guest, at the end of an interview says something a bit near the mark and the guest is 'disappeared', no ? Didn't think so, the guest would be challenged.

    If posts are summarily removed then how can opinions be changed, errors of viewpoint be highlighted ?

  • Comment number 40.

    I WAS CEREBRALLY SHOCKED BY ONE MAITLIS ASSAULT (#38)

    The schooling lady was developing her point, and I could tell (as you can) it was going somewhere of interest. But with the point 'teed up', before she could deliver the 'meat', Emily crashed in all over her 'guest'. ("Thank you for coming in"?)

    I wonder what the lady was about to say.

    Is it me?

  • Comment number 41.

    DON’T LOOK HERE…LOOK OVER THERE AT THE EVIL SYRIAN REGIME!

    IDF strikes Gaza overnight
    http://www.haaretz.com/news/diplomacy-defense/three-rockets-fired-at-be-er-sheva-on-seventh-day-of-israel-gaza-violence-1.418798


    This information is nowhere to be seen on the BBC’s ME news website (British Brainwashing Corporation)
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world/middle_east/

  • Comment number 42.

    BE OF GOOD CHEER - "WORLD LEADERS" ARE CLEARLY CONFIDENT - THEY ARE PLAYING TOGETHER(#41)

    I often refer to 'feudal Westminster' but, in truth, the whole 'global' charade is feudal. Depot Dave is doing a 'progress' through the land of friendly despot Obama.

    None of this 'cult of the personality' stuff is appropriate for a state manager like Cameron - it is monarch-stuff, that is to say: pointless except 'in and of itself' (going forward, in the dumb-space, this hour).

    This personal posturing, by cipher MPs, and super-cipher PMs, is inimical to the fundamental tenets of democracy/representation/service. Next time Emily leaps on a guest, make it a politician (preferably Despot Dave) and make the question: WHO THE HELL DO YOU THINK YOU ARE?

  • Comment number 43.

    Wired UK ‏ @WiredUK
    BBC to sell TV programmes for download minutes after they broadcast http://bit.ly/xH77uQ > http://www.wired.co.uk/news/archive/2012-03/15/project-barcelona by @BritishGaming

    ---

    Some might see this as a step forward, but one presumes that this is in addition to, and not instead of paying £145.50pa in advance as well, regardless of use or value.

  • Comment number 44.

    39. At 09:33 15th Mar 2012, BobRocket
    It is wrong to remove a comment just because someone (anonymously) takes a dislike to it, that kind of behavior is the thin end of the wedge.


    Agreed, but really, 'we' already have the full pizza, and have done for ages.

    Here's not too bad (relatively), but check out a Mark Mardell or Richard Black and it's attrition as various camps jerk knees and get indulged.

    Or here:

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/bbcinternet/2012/03/bbc_news_facebook_app.html

    And that's just the punters...

    Does this kind of thing happen in the NN editing suite, a guest, at the end of an interview says something a bit near the mark and the guest is 'disappeared', no ?

    Having a a bit of a ding-dong with the high-ups at ECU on this very point, challenging the precedent of an interviewee telling a Paxman or Humphrys that 'this breaks some rules I made up, so I am accusing you of one of them without specifying which, and now removing you from this discussion'... as happens all the time by the BBC with those who fund them.

    'If posts are summarily removed then how can opinions be changed, errors of viewpoint be highlighted ?'

    Good question. At least asked (for now). Won't be answered (or at least sensibly, if ever) I bet.

  • Comment number 45.

    40. At 09:49 15th Mar 2012, barriesingleton wrote:
    I wonder what the lady was about to say.


    Maybe some knew, and didn't fancy others finding out?

    Control the edit suite... what (or who) comes in, what goes in-ear, and what goes out, and you control the message. And that is a potent thing at £4Bpa, 24/7.

    That many folk trust so much still is, indeed, a wonder.

    That's all 'we have time for. A now, a 5min 'report' on the nether topiary of lady skateboarding turtles.

    Maybe there's a Voice that can dumb us back up, at peak viewing time?

  • Comment number 46.

    '44. At 11:37 15th Mar 2012, You wrote:
    39. At 09:33 15th Mar 2012, BobRocket


    Just checked back, and see we both engaged in the manner you advocate, and are now left hanging (if, at least, left).

    Which is why I not only cut and paste to archive my replies, and not only the post replied to, but now the whole thread to that point.

    And has worked gangbusters already as certain folk in charge claim things didn't happen that did, and if in my servers and not theirs no amount of FoI exemptions can avoid.

    It's a trust thing.

    I don't. And cold hard facts, quotes and URLs in writing trump a whole bunch of opinion or analysis any day. Especially when filtered.

  • Comment number 47.

    A Letter to David Cameron
    http://www.monbiot.com/2012/03/15/a-letter-to-david-cameron/

    Countering the letter sent to him by four former directors of Friends of the Earth

  • Comment number 48.

    England, what has become of you...oh thats right, someone left the door open:

    The case of the murdered swan. Perps unknown but you can hazard a guess at their nationality:

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2115107/Gang-bludgeon-swan-death-nail-covered-stick-eat-luring-ashore-bread.html

  • Comment number 49.

    '48. At 13:38 15th Mar 2012, kevseywevsey -
    The case of the murdered swan. Perps unknown but you can hazard a guess


    I kinda prefer the facts, but if say one did (and the DM has rather added a starter for 10... plus one poster has pointed out the CSI-skills of matching part-numberplates to van colours, or not, vs. more crucial 'safety camera' set-ups) could I then apply to be a major media editor and analyst?

    Stiff letter to follow. They can cause nasty paper cuts you know.

  • Comment number 50.

    Seems... symptomatic that I learned, albeit in 140 chars or less, what will be on the show tonight a couple of hours ago elsewhere, yet here, on the blog, as yet... nothing.

    Not sure the trend is a healthy one by any criterion.

  • Comment number 51.

    Leanne Wood has been named the new leader of Plaid Cymru and has promised "a far more aggressive strategy ..." because she says "Wales needs 'real independence'".

    Unalloyed joy from this English quarter, as this is yet another nail in the coffin of the so-called United Kingdom.

    Within the next couple of decades, or possibly sooner, we English will have our England back, thanks mainly to the Scots and Welsh people striving for their own independence from Westmonster.

  • Comment number 52.

    9/11 - CO2 - DAVE n BARACK - THIS IS THE AGE OF PERVERSITY

    If it turns out there really IS a shape-shifting lizard-elite running this barmy globe, I SHALL BE RELIEVED. But I am pretty sure it is, in reality, the best HomSap can achieve.

  • Comment number 53.

    PS. Ninety-nine per cent of the people in the world are fools and somehow we've all washed up on this blog.

    (with apologies to the late Thorton Wilder).

  • Comment number 54.

    Perhaps reading became less attractive to children when it was decreed it should be called "literacy skills", the sort of thing a robot might be programmed to do.
    The interest in cookery classes declined in much the same way after some fool decided to call it "food technology" in order to make it attractive to boys.

  • Comment number 55.

    DOUBLE DECEIT - DAVE DOING A 'GROUND ZERO NUMBER' - CLOSE TO UNBEARABLE

    My post #52, all the more poignant for being written prior to Jingo Dave assaulting my retina.

    #53 - Yeah right - except for those in Westminster. (Is there a number problem JC?)

  • Comment number 56.

    POKING A WOUND (#54)

    I remember a ripple in the Force Maggie; but I did not realise what they were up to, then. Do I recall a lot of talk about learning to "make food" - meaning: to prepare a meal? That drove me mad.

    Your hypothesis appeals, re 'literacy skills', but I suspect it is just the easy availability, and the 'immediacy' of moving images, that has seen-off reading.

    But be patient: there are nutter-scientists out there intending to upload data direct to the human brain, so we shall we 'well read' without ever having read anything! What is more, if it's invented here, ready primed to take credit at the Globopoly Table, we shall have GOT OURSELVES (yet) ANOTHER ONE.

    It really is no wonder Icke went the lizard route. But I reckon it is just THE AGE OF PERVERSITY.

  • Comment number 57.

    95 per cent of the worlds leading climate scientists say global warming is with us and will probably see us all off, sorry Nolly you well lost the argument, you flat earthers will be spouting your mantras as the waves crash over us, get real.....

 

BBC iD

Sign in

BBC navigation

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.