Nowun Till wonders what NICE would make of 19 gold medals

It would be interesting to obtain an evaluation form NICE, as to whether the £300 million invested in team GB for the Olympics, resulting in 19 gold medals was money well spent.

NICE, is the UK body, which evaluates the cost/benefit of medicines and decides whether they will be available for NHS patients in the UK.

They have decided that many peoples lives are not worth saving as the investment is too high and have such barriers to entry, that Roche have recently decided not to bother sending some cancer drugs for evaluation by NICE, as it is too expensive to go through the process.

I have a feeling that NICE would decide that at £15 million a gold medal, the value for money just isn't there.

Would we be better off in the UK having NICE decide on investment in sport, or Sport bodies evaluating on investment in saving lives?
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Nowun Till wonders at Rooney arrogance

Bolt increasingly showboated as he progressed though the 100 and 200 meter sprints at the 2008 Olympics. While ugly to watch, he was at least able to deliver.

An unheard of British 400 meter runner in the British 4x400 meter relay team decided he would join the party, with far more amusing results.

Another athlete who feels the need to wear sunglasses on dark nights, he was the anchor runner in the semi-final, which the British team won, by a handsome margin. Unfortunately, Rooney, decided to wave his baton, in a come and catch me if you can attitude, as he approached the finishing line.

It was a pleasure to watch him fail miserably in the final leg of the final, where Britain finished in 4th. I was watching for his showmanship as he approached the line, but strangely it wasn't there. All he was able to do on this occasion was throw the baton on the ground in the manner of a tempestuous child.

Arrogance never looks pretty and even less so from a failure.
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Nowun Till wonders how many racists it takes to change a light bulb?

The bigots in the UK are happily winning their battle to isolate the islands from dirty foreigners, stealing 'our jobs'. Well done racists.

With a downturn in economic activity in the UK and boneheaded immigration policies by the totalitarian labour government, the number of immigrants in the UK is set to decline steeply. Good old recession should be the war cry of the closed minded.

There are currently 72 000 foreign workers employed in the British food industry around 53% of these are Polish and they are beginning to head home. As a result 28% of food and drink manufacturers surveyed, have indicated this will hamper productivity. Increasing vacancy levels, which should be a good thing in an economic downturn. However British workers have priced themselves out of the market demanding far higher wages, than any sensible employer would pay. The F&B sector will be forced to employ British workers, who wont get out of bed unless they are overpaid, this will inevitably lead to a hike in food prices.

While the bigots in the UK like to believe every Daily Mail headline, the only reason British workers are not being employed is because they demand wages which are unacceptable. As a result, the UK now faces the position, whereby the bigots can be delighted that foreign workers are being driven out of this country. I wonder what they will screech when they have to pay double digit inflation prices for their food?

Don't tell me, profiteering businesses?

It is not just the bigots in delight unfortunately. F&B manufacturers are now trying to climb on the gravy train of grants for training, as apparently the indigenous species in the UK is too thick to work in the industry, so need to be trained.

base source thanks go to

oh and the answer... Can't be done, they don't want to be enlightened.
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Nowun Till wonders about data protection

The continued incompetence of bureaucrats in handling data is no longer of any surprise. Once again in the UK, the government have managed to loose sensitive data held on individuals. This time, it is the records of prisoners.

On this occasion, it was a private contracting firm who have managed to loose the information. It appears that the government is happy for sensitive data to be passed on to contractors on a whim. Many of these privately contracted firms, use contract labour in administrative roles, so the security and integrity of the data is always compromised, so much for data protection.

The continued demands for Identity Cards to be carried by individuals in the UK, is not something I support, on a variety of grounds. My own perspective aside, how much faith can even the most ardent supporter have of systems which so evidently fail?

The irony on this occasion, is that the records that have been lost, are of convicted criminals and it anticipated many of these individuals will seek protection or relocation, as their names and addresses are held on the data files.

This comes hard on the heels of 25 million records detailing claimants of child benefit.

At this rate, it may be better to load all the information onto the internet and let google index it, at least that way it is likely to collated correctly, it will save millions of pounds in contract fees, as the costs will be for data input, rather than IT consultants and I have more faith that Google will be able to collate the information by individual. Who knows what everyone's record will show, if the UK government are responsible for collation.

Once again there is to be an 'enquiry' what exactly is the point of these enquiries. Nothing happens, data files are still lost and the Government continues to loose credibility. The only beneficiaries are yet more political cronies who are appointed and paid to undertake these enquiries.
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Nowun Till reflects on sunglasses

Watching the women's hurdles final this afternoon, a confident American, Lolo Jones, stood at the starting blocks. Expectations surrounding her, that she would win the final.

All was going well until she met the penultimate hurdle, which she ran into as though she hadn't seen it. Perhaps she hadn't. The night sky over Beijing being dark and the stadium floodlight, there evidently wasn't any sun around, but that didn't stop Lolo Jones finding the need to wear sunglasses.

Why, oh why, do people feel the need to wear sunglasses at night? Why wear them in a sprint race at all when there is absolutely no glare?

I am delighted she ran into the hurdle, this constant need to look like an idiot, sporting sunglasses at midnight is laughable, but not as funny as an idiot wearing sunglasses doing something stupid.

Sunglasses have never been cool, nor will they ever. What they demonstrate, particularly out of sunlight, is lack of confidence and a desire to hide. The antithesis of the 'cool' unfazed, intended image.
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Nowun Till on 'we' and the added 'h'

Having watched some of the Olympics, it becomes ever more irritating the more I watch it.

No, not because I have any problem with the sports, or the coverage, but the interviews with competitors are the bane.

Increasingly when asked how an individual feels after an event the athlete concerned manages to introduce the term 'we' into it. That would be absolutely fine were they actually referring to more than one person, but they aren't. They are talking about themselves and no one else.

This 'Napoleon complex' is becoming increasingly common in sport and acting, where the interviewee develops some massive ego boost and suddenly thinks they are a multitude of people. I just wish the interviewer would have the front to ask them who are the other people they are referring to.

The sooner it stops, the better.

Which leads me on to a phenomenon in the UK, which is particularly irritating. The additional 'h'. There is a city on the south coast of the UK called Southampton, pronounced suhth-amp-tuhn, but regularly an additional 'h' appears with the pronunciation becoming south-hampton. Even more ridiculous is Southall an area of London. pronounced Suh-thall, which has now become South-hall. Why? Bearing in mind in England regularly letters are omitted completely in speech,, why do pretentious radio broadcasters feel the need to poncify pronunciation of areas? Anything to do with house prices in the area they live?

It reminds me of Clapham in South London, always a used to be great place, but not in the least trendy, until the late '80s and early '90s, when people with some money began to move into the area and a new sub-location defined as Clapham Common (which to be more precise had to be the North side of the Common) became the new 'desirable residence, or 'des res' according to estate agents. Some even managed to change the pronunciation Clap-m to Claam.

Why are the British net curtain twitchers so irritating.

Don't you just love the pretentious
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Nowun Till wonders about Sebastian Coe

What exactly is it that Sebastian Coe has, that makes him the right person to be the chair of the London organising committee for the London 2012 Olympics.

He won Olympic gold, so was a good athlete - ok, but is that relevant?

He is a politician - Not a good thing

He is a peer - Not a good thing

In 2006 he was appointed to the board of Bio-Synergy. Relevant?

Well Sebastian Coe likes to put himself forward as the epitome of banishing drugs in sport. Strangely enough Bio Synergy sell a controversial performance-enhancing substance banned in some countries. Creatine is found naturally in the body and in foods such as meat and fish which means it would be difficult to include on the list of prohibited substances. But is banned in France as a supplement, it is used by some British athletes as a legal alternative to anabolic steroids.

Medical experts have raised concerns about creatines long-term effects: It has been linked to cancer and kidney damage and side-effects are said to include muscle cramps, vomiting and dehydration.

FIFA, world football's governing body (of which he has held the position of Chair ofthe ethics committee), issued a warning to players using creatine, saying there were risks it could be contaminated with traces of banned substances.

Russell Langley, of UK Sport, the agency responsible for implementing anti-doping policy in the UK, said its advice to athletes was not to take any supplements because of the risks.

Sebastian Coe had this to say ... "This has nothing to do with my involvement with London 2012."

Complete Leisure Group - established shortly after London won the bid in 2005 to host the Olympics, with Lord Coe as the majority shareholder and main asset. - relevant?

CLG consists of Sebastian Coe Ltd - through which Lord Coe is paid for his appearances, media work and consultancies - the Sport magazine publisher, and sports drinks firm Biosynergy Ltd.

In August of 2007 In an email sent on 20 August, one of the company's directors, Robin Miller, wrote to Lord Coe and another director, Peter Abbey, calling for "urgent" action because he was being threatened with legal action after CLG failed to file annual accounts as required by company law.

CLG's accountant, Rakesh Patel of the Adler Shine ... "any auditor, us included, would not be able to give a clean audit report and would need to qualify (the accounts)... as the group (CLG) would not be able to demonstrate that it had sufficient cash resources to pay their debts".

He also added that Adler Shine will do no further work until CLG has settled the fees it owes the firm, and asks for the current year's auditing fee in advance.

CLG raised £1 million in investment with the help of Peter Abbey, In an exchange of emails with Craig Inglis, an investor from the Liberty Hill Group Abbey said "I am not hiding anything...The money, along with another 400,000, was pissed away ... and if you want to come in and see me, I will tell you chapter and verse... I am not happy having this in writing for obvious reasons...this is about the worst situation I have had to deal with and we are trying to solve it quietly. DO NOT circulate this PLEASE!!!"

Sebastian Coe also strenuously denies any link between his Olympics role and his earnings of at least £200,000 from speeches, product endorsements, and consultancy funnelled through CLG. However his PA Susie Black, who is contracted to be employed full-time by London 2012 and is paid as such out of Olympic funds. A spokeswoman for Sebastian Coe commented..' Ms Black also sometimes "printed things out" for CLG on London 2012 office printers and may have been involved in scheduling Lord Coe's private speaking events.

"Lord Coe has one diary. If it was a CLG meeting she might make (the appointment)" '

I am not too sure any of this adds much credibility to someone responsible for holding the purse strings to £multi-billion of anyone's money.

So what does make Sebastian Coe the best person for the job?

His drive? His commitment? His education? His network? Or something else...
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Nowun Till on the recession

Why are economists unable to use the term 'decline'?

I wonder sometimes if economists are spending too much time with politicians, jazzing up their speech with double talk.

The use of the word 'decline' seems to have been banished, much as Stalin banished those he didn't like. Reports by economists now refer to 'negative growth', why? It sounds like a second hand car dealer telling someone that a car with 100,000 miles on the clock, is 'run in'. It is nothing more than presentational skills gone whack.

Who are these economists protecting and why do they need to? As a listener/reader I don't want to have to translate doublespeak into some semblance of a language I understand. I expect it of politicians, who tell us all they 'have to lie' (I will leave that to another time), but not of economists and reporters.

It gets even worse, when they they talk about the periods of growth that have preceded this period. Just today I heard a reporter, even his head doing somersaults over what exactly he was trying to say, when he told listeners ' the two quarters of negative growth need to be compared to the growth, erm strong growth, growth over the previous few years.'

Decline is decline, growth is growth and negative growth would have made Winston Smith wince.
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