Friday, 18 December 2009

The Power Of Television

Of all the things doing the rounds at the moment, including the cold that I've picked up..I've stumbled upon this article on the BBC news website :-

A man has been jailed for killing his wife in an argument by throwing their TV remote control at her. Unfortunately, unknown the herself and her husband, the victim suffered from a weakened artery in her neck. By 'fluke' the remote control struck her at that exact place, resulting in her dying from a massive brain haemorrhage.

How awful. It just goes to show that there are consequences you might not consider to a lost temper.

We're not told what the argument was about. Was it about which channel they should watch ?

It's sad but also true that incidence if domestic violence increase at Christmas time. Just when families should be enjoying spending more time with each other, the stress of all the planning, preparation, desperately fighting your way around the shops to purchase all those 'must have' presents seems to push people over the edge.

Season of good will ?

Maybe there should be less spending of money, and more spending of time instead. We all keep asking for a simpler life, but want someone else to simplify it for us.

Tuesday, 15 December 2009

Twelve days of Christmas....strike action..

News today that the members of the Unite union will be on strike from December 22nd, thereby ruining the Christmas travel arrangements for thousands, possibly millions of people.

The apparent disagreement is about BA wanting to cut the number of air steward staff on flights.

I'm always a little bothered by unions' obvious attempts to blackmail the employers of their members. It always seems more than a little ironic to me that by preventing measures that will make the organisation profitable again, there are dangers that more drastic measures will be needed later. Including larger redundancies. If the company went out of business, then all the cabin staff (and everyone else) would be out of a job.

The owner of a sweet shop was on the news earlier today, saying that he had banned all BA staff from entering his shop in Horsham as they were to blame (he perceived) for his plan to go to New York and share Christmas with a friend being put into the balance.

I don't think my opinions of union action will shock, I personally feel they tend to be counter productive in the end. There is, after all, only so much money to go round, and it's sheer naivety on their part to think that the budget for wages increases because of their actions. If anything, it just prolongs and increases any action required to bring a company back into profitability.

Having said that, I do believe that companies should be prepared to think beyond the 'need to cut staff to save money' model that some seem to wheel out in times of financial hardship. What does seem strange is that when any company is doing well, the members of its board do very very well indeed as the success is supposedly due to their actions. When a company falls onto hard times, it appears that they are able to justify stiff pay rises or rewards for themselves as they are having to make 'difficult decisions'. Surely it would make more sense that they suffered a share of the pain that they meter out to the general workforce ? Wage cuts, pay freezes, increases of duties all being things that are asked of staff during such times. Funny how that doesn't appear to translate into the boardroom.

Tuesday, 1 December 2009

Drunk drivers to be 'shopped' by text

A UK Police have launched a service (if that is the word to use) that allows people to report drink drivers by text message. Hopefully people won't be actually driving themselves whilst trying to do it.

Good thing or a bad thing ?

Well anything that keeps drivers off the roads when they aren't in a fit state to drive is a good thing.

Drinking and driving, hmmm, its a lethal combination of two of our favourite vices as a country. We're not the only society in the world that are practically wedded to our cars, but we do seem to have an attitude to alcohol consumption that makes us all look like we pretty much are alcoholics in waiting. Really, did the move to a 24 hours drinking culture provide a more relaxed environment to drinking, or just give those that want to more time in which to get even more drunk ?

When I used to live in the town centre I was surrounded by the effects of uncontrolled and unabated alcohol consumption, mostly by people that didn't know their limits, and seemed perfectly happy to throw money away on something that actually makes them very ill. Some of the illness being quite literally something that I would have to step around in the morning.

As someone who doesn't drive, it never ceases to amaze me the sheer number of people that I see driving their cars whilst talking, or even texting on their mobile phones, without seatbelts on. Drivers do seem to be fundamentally selfish people, and that self absorbed nature extends to their blatant disregard for the safety of others.