Friday, 27 July 2012

2012 a review of the last 6 months

I'm not going to bother finishing it now. It just tails off and that's fine with me.
I've accepted it.

It must have been early Jan 2012


So as I write this I've now been back in the UK for 6 months.
And what of it?
Well here's some observations I've made about whats going on here.

Now when I left England Woolworths had just closed. In my mind we were at the edge.
When I left the local paper's job issue (every thursday) would have a caption reading 8,000 jobs inside today.
Since being back that same caption now reads 127 jobs inside today.
Bit of a downturn.

Arts Jobs
So with the Slashing of the Arts council and complete obliteration of the film council I was thinking that the UK was not really going to be able to give me much in the way of work.
The way it turns out though is that I have had quite a decent amount of job offers and "Artist" work coming in. But then, I know people.

Signing on
As you probably know, (if you didn't you are nothing to me), I love the old signing on process.
On of my favourite biweekly experiences.
However this has all changed. The way it used to work was you'd choose 3 areas of work you could do and the Job Centre Plus (same as Job Centre but everything starts an hour later) would arrange interview for any jobs that fall under your search umbrella. Not any more. When I went to sign for the first time upon my return I was told to just choose 1 job. My ideal job, and if it ever became available then they'd let me know. Other than that they just need me to pop in once a fortnight and say hello. The biggest change I noticed is that they could no longer afford to give me a plastic wallet to keep all my Job Seeker's stuff in. This was blamed on "Cameron's Cutbacks".
I've since signed off and recently tried to get working tax credits but after filling out my application got sent a letter demanding I pay back all the doll money they'd given me in the first 13 weeks I was back.

The Coalition Government
Seriously what is this shit?
I watched it all happen from the safety of my Asian office and couldn't work out what was going on. Why don't people use their vote? Was my first question. 61.5% turnout I read. So more than last time but still not even 2/3 of the population.

As I watched this unfold I was living in a country so riddled with corruption that voting is a pointless endeavour. A country where the government made it illegal for opposing political parties to advertise and regularly buy votes and file the votes of thousands of recently dead. And I looked to you Britain, I looked to you to take your chance to make a positive change and you wasted it.

This was then followed by the AV referendum. 50% turn out in Scotland and only 35% in London. That was our chance to change it all and you missed it. If you did not vote in the AV referendum then stop reading this now. Turn your computer off put your hands in your back pockets and smash your face into a wall. If you did vote I don't particularly care which way you voted as long as you believed in the choice you made.
If you didn't make a choice because you didn't know which side of he debate you agreed with then again, fair enough take your hands out of your pockets. But if you were just too lazy to find out what it was all about or you were of the opinion that "it won't make any difference either way" then smash away.

A people who don't vote is what certain governments strive for.
You devalue the struggle by not voting. It's not just your right but your duty.

Now my main exposure to main-streem music in the UK has come to me when driving around listening to Radio 1. This is not completely my choice as it turns out my car stereo is reluctant to tune into anything else.
Seriously it has a tape-deck but my girlfriend tried to use it and all it did was take the tape and refuse to eject or play it.
Now I've noticed a few things about Radio 1. My first problem is with the presenters.

Greg James. Who is this soft-faced, knowledgeless bad idea of a man shadow? Absolute prick. The other day I heard him actually say, (in reference to Drake), "I wish I was cool enough to be a gangster." Bang up job you're doing there BBC promoting the idea that being a gangster is cool. Seriously. I said this to someone and they said yeah but he doesn't really mean it, it's just a casual thing to say to fill some time. Just something to say.
Tbh I've been involved in a lot of different projects that have worked tirelessly to try and persuade kids against the idea that being a gangster is cool. Does no body remember the postcode wars? wasn't so cool then was it. In fact what are Radio 1 doing playing "daytime" music that promotes violence and gangterism as a positive thing.

Next up is Grimmy. I've listened to him over the past few months doing interviews with people where as far as I'm aware he's not even fucking listening. I think my favourite was when he had Kate Tempest on. She performed a 6 and a half minute poem to him. Litterally must have been just the 2 of them in a small box of a studio and Kate going at it hard for the duration. His responce when the poem finished was to say "ooerr, that was good wun't it."
Dry mate dry. As for the rest of the time he's constantly talking about his aftershave or what his friend Fifi said to him about his short shorts.
That'll do pig.
That'll do.

It's all just so inane and mindless.
Which leads me onto this mollycoddled Nick Knowles lookalike.
Example I met this arrogant child of an idiot a few months before I left. Our band supported him at a gig in Leicester. An over 14s gig. Which means that nobody over the age of 19 was there.
Durin his set he took his shirt off and physically grabbed young girls hands from the crowd making them touch his raw pastry body. Like an abusive puppeteer. Behaviour I'd describe as "suspect" at the very least.
My mate dared me to put my nose in his belly button while he was on stage so I walked over and gripped him by the hips like I was holding a playstation controller, and just pushed my nose in there. Horrible.
Then we went up stairs to his dressing room and stole his rider.

Now since I've been back I've had to suffer this prick on every TV panel show and almost constantly though background music everywhere.
The music would be bad enough but it's the TV stuff I hate the most. It's his actual personality. Ever show he's on he slags off someone else and moans that he's not famous enough despite having done thousands of gigs and shows.
I plan to do a blog at some point that is an analytical examination of lyrics in rappy pop songs and I'll start with him.

And of course Cher Lloyd's lacklustre club nothingness Swagger Jagger (not a real phrase).
This was by far the biggest piece of shit I've ever seen.

No coincidence then that the weekend it went to number one also signalled the start of 5 days of rioting across the UK.
The main thing I got from the rioting was a strange feeling that it was all being orchestrated by the police and media. Maybe that's just the years of hardened cynicism talking but the more I saw the more I was convinced it was being pushed for a reason.

Lets take what happened in Leicester as an example of this.
Now Leicester didn't really have rioting on any kind of scale that wasn't just a joke.
But what did happen was suspect.

It must have been on the 3rd day following a twitter rumour that I first saw on the account of Leicestershire police. Rumour was simple. Riots planned in Leicester city centre. This rumour was confirmed by a friend of mine with a Blackberry who said they'd received bbm's (whatever they are), saying the same thing.
Now if you've ever been to Leicester then you'll know there's not much to do most evenings and the potential promise of actual running street battles with the police intrigued a lot of people.

And so the crowds formed in the city centre. All watching the riot police who were spreading themselves around the clocktower. As time passed people wondered where the rioters were. Moments later they realised as the police began to push the onlookers back. "Oh right, WE must be the rioters" thought the crowd as they ran up Granby Street to smash in the windows of poundland before dispersing back to their homes.

Bit of a non-event everyone thought.
Everyone that was apart from the Leicestershire police who used the whole thing as a reason to institute new "right to disperse" legislation. The new law stating that the police now have the right to disperse groups of 2 or more people walking through the city centre.
That's right 2 people is a group.
Me and You = Group.

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