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Everything posted by Westward

  1. In light of the woke demands that Oxford & Cambridge accept more students from state schools, it's worth bearing in mind that in the 50s and 60s around 45% of entrants to those top universities were from grammar schools. Of course back then it was socially acceptable for them to accept students purely on merit. A bit different from today's "Inclusive" society where other considerations can and frequently do, trump ability.
  2. Judging by the merry collection of wires up there it looks like there was a ceiling rose and incandescent bulb fitted before the fluorescent tube.
  3. My point exactly. We moved to this town in 1984 because there was a grammar school here. The LEA had run it down and underfunded it for years along with the girls high school on the same campus in a failed attempt to put them out of business. Under Thatcher, schools had the opportunity to get away from the dead hands of LEAs such as Gloucester and that's what happened here. The two schools had a long history as part of the local culture and many locals who hadn't attended them happily signed the petition to retain them. The schools achieved direct funding in 1986 and haven't looked back. My 3 sons all went and all achieved 10 or 11 GCSEs and 3 A levels. They all have good careers... Today those 2 schools are thriving, and whilst the 4 local comprehensives are under subscribed, pupils are bussed in from all over the county and even from as far away as Swindon to get a grammar school education. Grammar schools as such were never the problem. The 11 plus was a desperately poor method of selection and many - such as my brother- who would have done well in a grammar ended up in the dumping ground known as the secondary modern. He got out after a year and transferred to a technical school in London which worked well for him.
  4. Okay fair enough. It was the text you quoted that cause me to infer otherwise.
  5. Depends what you mean by relevant. How many employers ask for drama, art or RE qualifications in preference to English and Maths?
  6. Spot on! The general standard of written and spoken English in this country is appalling, thanks in large part to the ideological bigotry that abolished the grammar schools and replaced them with educational mediocrity. Whatever anyone's personal view of the value of Latin, the grammar schools were by far the greatest enablers of social mobility this country has ever had. The irony is that with a very few exceptions, they were destroyed by the very party that claims to champion social mobility! Latin, along with other classical languages such as ancient Greek, was of course a factor in engendering the hated "Elitism" label the socialist loonies applied to the grammar schools. Judging by the opening post such attitudes still exist.
  7. It will have a date code stamped on at time of proof which will help but if it's the same Franchi as today's guns then GMK would be a good start as Franchi is owned by Beretta.
  8. I know what the word is. I originally qualified in electronic engineering. I deliberately didn't use it. The 4G router is running okay so far. getting a full 5 bars signal strength and close to 40Mb/s download. I'm using it right now...
  9. Right now I'm getting 31Mb download, 8Mb upload. That's on fibre but not superfast fibre and seems adequate for our needs. Keep in mind that data signals travel end to end at the same speed regardless of whether it's copper, fibre or through the ether. Large values for Mb describe data volumes per second rather than actual data transfer speed and even 100Mb/s can't fix congestion and slow sites. In the event Three claim 50-100 Mb download, but as I say, I'm not looking for bragging points about download rates but reliability does matter to me and if it's patchy I'll report back here and cancel the deal with three. The home broadband signal uses a different spectrum within the 4G bandspread than mobile phones. Did you use the Three coverage checker?
  10. We have the usual fibre broadband on BT kit + landline phone. Our ISP is Zen Internet and I can't fault them. Excellent customer support, good router and guaranteed never to go up in price. However, from Three I can get a 4G hub with 4 ethernet ports capable of handling 64 wifi devices at once with unlimited data and all for nothing up front and a monthly charge of almost £11 p/m less than I'm paying now because obviously there's no BT line rental. There is a 14 trial period and if not happy back it goes. I'd be interested to hear opinions from anyone else who's done the same.
  11. The action height is irrelevant except for the lower firing pin erosion. It's the rib height relative to the comb height that matters. A proper gunfitter would know that. I wonder, is it possible the one you shouldered was a trap gun? Lots of sporting shooters choose the MK38 trap because the sporters have low-ish comb game stocks.
  12. The 525 and MK38 share virtually the same action but, depending on vintage, the barrels will be different construction and different weight. My personal take is that Mirokus tend to be low in the comb, at least in comparison with Italian and German guns, but your mileage may vary - as the Americans tend to say.
  13. The German government received ample flood warnings from weather scientists, in some cases as much as 5 days prior, including exactly which rivers were most at risk and exactly which towns. No one knows why they didn't act on the information. All of which is a bit different from blathering on with yellow warnings etc which everyone over the age of 5 ignores on the grounds that they've seen rain or wind or frost or whatever before.
  14. We sure have lots of ways of making our country a laughing stock. My advice to the met office is get your forecasting better and forget about weather warnings as no one changes any of their plans because of them. 30 degrees is simply a warm day in three quarters of the world and anything under 38-40 is perfectly normal. Anyone been to Australia and enjoyed a BBQ at midnight in 37 degrees?
  15. Whilst I agree that Italy were the better side I also think their dirty play helped a lot too. They soon spotted that England were defending fairly deep and hoping for a goal on the break so they flattened Kane and Sterling on several occasions, even before the long pass had reached them. In my opinion as someone who hates cheating in any form, at least 3 of the Italians should have been red carded. Dragging someone backwards to the ground by yanking their shirt really should be a lot more than a yellow. Zero tolerance would soon bring an end to the culture that cynical fouls are part of the game.
  16. What's happening is that the police have arbitrarily decided that maintaining law & order is not their main priority. Instead they claim their raison d'etre is "Public Safety" and apparently they can make such decisions without consulting the public or, presumably, obtaining clearance from the Home Secretary. If the most of the Chief Officers had actually risen through the ranks and put in the time as working officers with appropriate field experience and contact with the outside world, things might be different. As it is, most are just office based professional managers who've spent half their careers achieving nothing more than collecting additional letters after their names. Chances are right now there's a scramble for allies and supporters going on to see who can offload any blame and who has to be sacrificed. The only certainty is that the guilty will, as usual, walk away laughing and nothing much will change. The warm and cuddly Cressida Duck has shrugged off blame several times already, but she will always be bulletproof as she ticks all the right PC boxes for gender, LGBT orientation etc.
  17. About 3 years ago a lad around the corner suddenly parked his old A3 in the lane near our house. Couple of days later a DVLC enforcement van turned up clamped it and drove off. A bit later an old red van appeared and a young fella emerged with a cordless angle grinder and cut the clamp off. The lad who owned the car then walked round and cash changed hands. The red van drove off, the A3 drove off and I picked up a steel block from the clamp left in the road. We've been using it as a doorstop ever since. There must be 10s of thousands of people cheating the system and I wonder... How many enforcement vans do they have???
  18. It's the standard rib. CG updated the rib design about 6 or 7 years ago with the slimmer, forward slanted posts. I think the idea was to shave a little front end weight. The Ascent has the same general design but is noticeably taller.
  19. The point about the so called Blue Wall is that there isn't one. Southern voters tend to vote positively using their heads which makes them somewhat different from the mostly northern based electorate with a lot of automatic and unthinking hatred of the tories, which has sustained the Red Wall for generations. People in places like Amersham aren't stupid by and large. They tend keep up with real news, rather than just celeb gossip, and they don't like that Boris has taken away our liberties with no clear plan or timescale for restoring them. Plus they can see he's been indecisive and instead of using his scientific advisers to offer their views so that he can make executive decisions, he's allowed them to tell him what his decisions should be. The net result is that, thanks to the usual disagreements between scientists and a government run by a bunch of people who haven't evolved much since their student days, the government has been out it's collective depth right from day 1. The upshot is that they've simply kept on kicking the can down the road in the hope that one day either vaccines or nature will end the pandemic. Well, the pandemic has been over for weeks and there's no need to keep throwing everything under the bus in order to "Save the NHS". There aren't many in hospital with Covid and all but a tiny percentage of those are people who haven't been vaccinated - usually because they've refused it. The only people who don't get that the pandemic is over, or rather don't want to get it, are the scientific advisers pulling Boris' strings, who I suspect are being handsomely rewarded for fuelling and maintaining government panic and thus prolonging the restrictions unnecessarily. The LibDems didn't win the seat, Boris & Co lost it.
  20. I've had 2 Berettas from new and both had heavy trigger pulls. I had them lightened on the 1st one then just lived with it the 2nd. I've really tried to like Berettas since then, so a few years back I tried a GMK demo 692, but for the 1st two pairs I couldn't pull the trigger without dragging the gun off line. A year or so after that I tried a GMK demo 690, the tacky one with orange lettering, and that was the same. My old 687 from 1991 had a much nicer trigger but I wouldn't have a new Beretta now as other competitive guns have so much better triggers. Some people don't notice or don't care about heavy triggers, but after a couple of years with light, crisp 3½lb pulls the Berettas take a lot of getting used to. Obviously it's intentional and my guess it's something to do with being seen to take precautions against accidental discharges and product lability claims etc.
  21. You could pick up a cheapo MIL code scanner for less the £15 on fleaBay. At least then you'd know what the fault is and if it's the egr use a fuel additive such as BG244 to clean it.
  22. Exactly. And NHS Data Sharing doesn't change a thing. There's an up side to data sharing too. How about better medications though very large scale surveys into effectiveness or side effects etc. When I was a lad, the attitude that "The Man" was out to get you was called "Ant establishmentarianism". It's always been there and no doubt always will be - and yes, we've sleepwalked into losing so many of our ancient freedoms that I truly feel sorry that a large percentage of the population have no idea what it's like to be able to say what you like, write what you like, think what you like and not have to worry that there might be consequences such as prosecution or loss of employment. And never know what it's like to have a police force who fully understand that their primary function is the maintenance of law and order as opposed to controlling people's behaviour in the guise of "protecting public safety". But I still don't care who sees my medical records and still don't understand what is so secret about them that confidentiality is deemed to be crucial. You mentioned firearms certificates. So, in your opinion, should someone with say epilepsy, be allowed to decide for him or herself about using firearms or should their fitness be assessed by a 3rd party such as a doctor?
  23. Oh Dear, Big Brother paranoia again. Medical records and Criminal records are not the same thing. The police can already obtain permission to snoop into your medical data.
  24. GDPR tends to be seen as some great leap forward whereas it's simply a highly publicised and cutely named reworking of Data Protection laws that have existed for well over 30 years. The only real changes are to constantly irritate everyone with demands to agree or otherwise to cookies whenever we open a web site and the right to be forgotten - which is the only useful part of the whole hideously expensive pantomime. GDPR is just another one of the many creations by overpaid mandarins in order to keep themselves in a job, regardless whether or not there's any actual gain.
  25. I don't care very much what they do with my medical data and I've never understood why confidentiality is so vital that it has to be guarded better than Buckingham Palace. Most of the women I've ever come across are happy to spend hours and hours talking about their medical conditions with anyone who'll listen. Your data isn't particularly safe right now anyway as every single clinician working in your doctor's surgery can access your medical file and the NHS already does data mining on patient records.
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