Thoughts on politics and life from a liberal perspective

Wednesday 20 May 2009

Eight things I hate

Constantly Furious who always seems to be angry about something or other has tagged me with the "Eight things I hate meme" which is apt given his perpetual state of rage. He seems to think that Lib Dems never get annoyed about things. Well here is my attempt to prove him wrong:

1) The fact that to try and work out what the quickest and cheapest train journey to somewhere is has become all but impossible. I am sure it never used to be perfect under BR but there are now about 50 different companies you can book journeys through and not only do they all give you different information and contradict each other, but if you wait 5 minutes and go back to the same company, they even contradict THEMSELVES! Who the hell thought it was a good idea to split it all up so you can now never find out who is repsonsible? Actually I know. It was the last Conservative government in a final act of spite before they fell into political oblivion.

2) Homeopaths. Take your anti-scientific, placebo emulating, useless sugar pills and shove them where the sun don't shine.

3) Anti MMR campaigners. Congratulations by the way to all those dogged campaigners who still believe that one flawed and completely discredited study 11 years ago trumps all subsequent properly scientific studies that show absolutely no link at all between MMR and autism. You have now succeeded in causing the worst outbreak of measles in many years. The worst example of this I have seen recently is Jeni Barnett the LBC radio hostwho I can only describe as an idiot who spent 45 minutes spotuing pseudo-scientific nonsense and screeching down and insulting anyone who disagreed with her. I blogged about this disgraceful episode here.

4) The First Past the Post electoral system. How can a system that shuts out most small parties thus depriving a substantial proportion of the electorate of any parliamentary representation and that allows a government to get 55% of the seats on 35% of the vote be considered fair or democratic?

5) The War on Drugs. This has been going on for 40 years. It clearly does not work. There are about 500x more heroin addicts in the UK now than there were in 1971 when the misuse of drugs act was brought in. the current system maximises harm and criminalises people for what is essentially a public health issue. And yet when anybody tries to question the current system they are bayed at from politicians and the media that they are "soft on drugs" and emotive arguments that don't actually engage with the questions are mustered against them. Hence most politicians are terrified to go anywhere near the subject.

6) Big Brother. I know CF also listed this but he is bang on. What had the potential in series 1 to be an interesting sociological experiment (indeed that's how Endemol first tried to sell it) quickly degenerated into what it is now. A bunch of ecomaniacal, attention seeking idiots scratching each other's eyes out for the chance to get their boat on the box for an extra few seconds and thus score the front cover of Sleb magazine. No talent, no redeeming features and no shame.

7) Marmite - nuff said

8) Windows Vista: This is a long one so you might want to stop reading now!
- It is so slow. I am certain my current Vista machines (work and home) are both slower than my previous XP machines even though the hardware in both cases is significantly better. It still amazes me how speed considerations just seem to go out of the window for OS and application developers. I don’t want to have sit there for 5 minutes waiting for a load of unnecessary services to load up. I also don’t want to see a spinning blue circle for 20 seconds after I invoke Windows Explorer. I just want Windows Explorer! The worst example of this is clicking CTRL-ALT-DEL. Even this can take 15 – 30 seconds to bring up the low level menu. This is supposed to be a shortcut to the low level of the OS!
- Windows Explorer seems to choose the style and fields available for my view all by itself. Sometimes it will go for thumbnails, sometimes lists. I have tried forcing it to always be “details” with the fields most useful to me (filename, size, attributes, date modified) for all folders but this does not work. I have lost count of the number of times I have to turn off “Artists”, “Album”, “Genre”, “Rating” and “#”. It seems to assume every folder is to be used by a 13 year old child cataloguing their mp3 collection. Even folders that do not contain any mp3s. Beyond frustrating.
- UAC is just intrusive and as far as I can tell in my case pointless. However I have been warned it is a bad idea to turn it off so I put up with it.
- I have reminders of things like “Div X update” every time I want to run Windows Media Player but when I say “OK” there is no update available and I am unable to turn this off.
- The “All Programs” section of the windows menu is worse than in XP.
- Silly things like changing the name of “Add/Remove Programs” to “Programs and Features”. Why!!? It just confuses long time users of Windows. I still have to think every time I need to do this now, “what is it called again?”. Unnecessary cognitive overhead.
- Loss of up arrow in Windows Explorer. This is such a stupid omission.

I now tag Oranjepan and Norfolk Blogger.


Constantly Furious said...

Excellent. Good to see the Fury.

However, you are so wrong about marmite.

Oranjepan said...

Marmite is very good in small doses. Particularly on cooling toast with half-melted butter.

Anonymous said...

To be honest if I'd really thought about it a lot of the things I hate would have been on your list, but I figured hate's irrational, so I'd concentrate on those!