Monday 10 August 2009

Remind Me. How Did We Win Two Wars, Again?

"This royal throne of kings, this sceptred isle,
This earth of majesty, this seat of Mars,
This other Eden, demi-paradise;
This fortress, built by nature for its precious fucking flowers"

Shakespeare, Richard II (sort of)

I mean, seriously, what the fuck is this?

The centuries-old practice of servants and guests walking backwards when leaving a room after seeing the monarch has been dropped after health and safety concerns.

The protocol was observed as a sign of respect but royal aides feared it could lead to someone getting hurt – and potentially suing Buckingham Palace for damages.

The decision was taken to quietly drop the practice for most Palace staff and all visitors.

For real? Because someone might hurt themselves when ... err ... not one person has done so since the practice was installed in medieval times?

Now, this could just be an expedient way of not having to admit that it looks damn stupid and has no real place in the modern era, but can we please stop adding extra fuel to the out of control health and safety bush fire by using this as a reason for ceasing it?

Because the vast majority of the pleblic in this country are incredibly stupid. They read (those who can. The Sun, usually), they digest, they believe, they regurgitate. By next week, it will be a widely held 'truth' that walking backwards has been banned by the Queen, and football clubs up and down the country will delete the faster, running version from their training schedules. QI will debunk it at some point but the pleblic mostly don't watch that anyway.

The government and their cohort quangoes, fake charities and assorted self-interested lobby groups have long since worked out how to manipulate outlets like Comrade Beeb. And, in turn, Comrade Beeb have worked out how to brainwash an increasingly dozy public (just re-watch today's lunchtime news and count the number of times you hear the term 'climate change' for very little reason - over double figures in just two articles - and don't get me started on the passive smoking con).

The health and safety juggernaut is similar, but is a bit of a poulet and ovum situation. Did the H&S Act 1974 cause us to become a nation of quivering, insular, gutless, delicate, bruiseophobic lily-livers? Or are the overweening risk-aversion measures a response to our being, generally, quivering, insular, gutless, delicate, bruiseophobic lily-livers?

Whatever the answer, the Queen jumping on the bubble-wrap bandwagon is further perpetuating the culture and ISN'T FUCKING HELPFUL.

Oi, Queenie. You lived through the second world war for crying out loud. What did you say to the land girls? Tell them to stop digging until a risk assessment had been performed on the possibility of a pulled muscle, did you? Those guys who took boats to Dunkirk, did you give them a cheery "Be careful now, don't go near any beaches, it's a bit dangerous" to see them on their way?

No. So what's all this shit about walking backwards being a hazard, then? If someone can't walk backwards without falling over, they deserve pain for not having properly learned how their limbs work. If it's just that you think it's old hat, say so.

You know why? Well, if the knuckleheaded keep having danger hammered into their tiny minds, they end up making us look like the pussies of the world.

The England team has defended its decision to withdraw from the World Badminton Championships in India because of security concerns.

They denied claims they had "overreacted" to a terrorist threat, saying there had not been "appropriate levels of security".

They read something in the paper the other day, and promptly quivered and wobbled their self-important arses back to Blighty - brown trousers and all.

Along with all the other nations who also shat their pants, like ... err ... no-one.

Olympic silver medallist Nathan Robertson said he was "glad to be home in one piece".

Yeah, cos you're so fucking important, aren't you Nathan. One can almost imagine the discussion at terrorist HQ, Hyderabad.

Ahmed Amatoady: The English badminton team are in India, shall we bomb them?
Osama Bin Beardy: What's badminton?
AA: A sport.
OBB: Are they famous?
AA: There's one guy called Nathan who was in the audience at the BBC Sports Personality of the Year once.
OBB: Never heard of the cunt.
AA: Neither have 90% of the English infidels.
OBB: Fuck that then, let's stick to cricketers.

Little england arrogance meets risk-averse panic about something that might happen, sometime, perhaps. Best just turn tail and flee then.

On a parochial level, the hi-viz bedecked panic-peddlers have instilled an environment where knuckle-scrapers will walk Sultan, their psychopathic staffie, blacken their skin with agony-inducing tattoos, knock back a gallon of white lightning on a regular basis, revel in a 'rumble' at weekends, but sue their local shop for compo if they slip on a wet floor - "elf an safety 'azard, innit".

Meanwhile, abroad, we have Brits (strike that, it's a bit harsh in this case, the Scots and Welsh are still in India) the English exporting the precious risk-terror before tucking their tail firmly between their legs and bleating to a sympathetic UK press on their return - "Nothing actually happened, but it was hell on earth, I tell ya".

Health and safety seems to have protected all of us from harm, right down to the risk of a broken fingernail. Unfortunately, in so doing, it has ripped out our collective spine.


Pavlov's Cat said...

I know someone who recieved an OBE, who was told the protocol was 3 small steps backwards, then turn and move off to your asigned position. However if they found that difficult through disability, infirmity or such they could just turn and Her Madge would not mind.

So 3 small steps backwards on a carpet / floor that's smoother than a billiard table at the Crucible. If you can't manage that quite frankly you desevre to trip and break your fucking neck.

I think this is another example of The Righteous using H&S to degrade our culture and traditions.
I bet no one at the Palace even thought of it, until it was 'pointed out' to them.

As for the Badminton team, well it is Badminton, it's not as if it was the England Rugby XV that might be a story.

( for all the Badminton fans, I'm sorry it's a girlie pastime, that's played on summer lawns with jugs of Pimms at hand or on the beach on holiday it is not a sport )

Unknown said...

Don’t start me off on Health and fucking Safety Dick. Unless your a fake charity you bound to fall foul of their inanity, as this Middlesbrough granny found out,

Fausty said...

I'll wager the protocol was dropped in the government's ongoing campaign to denude this country of its traditions, ripe for full political integration with the EU.

H&S was just the "narrative" - the story that is designed to make the reality seem more palatable.

Anonymous said...

H&S is being used for every piece of liberty that we have left.

It has destroyed our country and then they wonder why everyone is running riot on our streets.

It is the EU that is causing this because our government is too weak to stand up for us.

The Queen, albeit I still admire royalty, has unfortunately disowned her previous principals IMHO. This being the case, I no longer respect royalty like I did some 11 years ago.

This government has a lot to answer for.

Anonymous said...

O/T but have you heard the news today that mouth cancer has increased by 25%? The experts are putting it down to increased drinking rather than smoking (the other cause) because they're seeing people in their 40s (and mouth cancer caused by smoking would take longer to appear).

1) Yet again the magic figure of 25% pops us (same figure as elevated risk of heart attacks from passive smoking)

2) I'm waiting for ASH to wade in and argue that in some cases (25% possibly) it will be caused by smoking and this proves that not enough is being done to prevent chiiildren from smoking etc etc etc. Hell, they just might even try to claim it's from passive smoking if they can get away with it (which they can)


B7 said...

In Beijing I have observed some of the inhabitants walking to work backwards.

They do it to keep fit, most of the paths are uneven, I have never seen anyone fall over.

Anonymous said...

I have the solution:
Walking backwards over a carpet of bubble wrap.
Safe and entertaining!

BTS said...

Having carried thousands of extremely heavy pieces of furniture at work whilst walking backwards I think I can safely say that this is preposterous in the extreme.

Trying to walk forwards on my way home from a party last week, however, was utterly fucking impossible..

Pocket Rocket said...

It is most definitely the Health and Safety at Work Act, plus the No Win No Fee Claim system which allows anybody to make a claim for almost any event that are, taken together , responsible for the ridiculous situations we see today.
Conducting and documenting risk assessments for work activities is a legal requirement of the Act. Nobody with half a brain wants to bore their way through doing risk assessments, therefore it is left to those with less than half a brain to produce them - listing everything that could go wrong and then describing the mitigating action. Thus 'Being Knighted' - hazards - getting eye poked out by sword - mitigating action is to 'Use a Plastic Sword without a point' and so on, ad infinitum. Take this with the MOD secretary who won some 400 k for getting a poorly thumb and you get a totaly and increasingly risk averse society who are looking for any and every reason they can to make a claim ( Where there's blame..)so as to win some dosh. To eliminate this problem you have to repeal the Health and Safety at Work Act and replace it with a general legal obligation to provide a safe working environment ( without saying how that will be achieved ) and make No Win No Fee offers illegal.