24 March 2013 (Sunday) - More Opinionated Ranting

I suppose that having had two nights of waking before 3am had given me something of a sleep deficit, so it wasn't unexpected that I might catch up on some sleep this morning. I woke at 5.30am, which wasn't bad, really. I got up and once abluted did the washing up. Dull.

Fudge woke and together we watched Babylon 5 over some brekkie. Or I watched Babylon 5. Fudge watched the tropical fish in their tank. Usually he ignores them, but from time to time something about the tank catches his interest. I wonder what it is.

And so to work. As I drove some opinionated chap was ranting on the radio about one of the Government's employment training schemes. Apparently some unemployed people are obliged to do various work experience schemes for a maximum of four weeks. In theory it's to give them work experience and to provide them with workplace training. They don't get paid for receiving this training and experience, and if they don't do it then they risk losing various benefits. Personally I can't see the harm in it, but what do I know?
Those who make a living out of claiming the moral high ground have likened this to slave labour. They've even got a web site, but if you read through their propaganda it's clear that they've lost their way, seeming to be favouring political publicity stunts rather than actually doing anything constructive. For example working when they would otherwise be doing nothing, like the people on this scheme might be doing...
The bloke ranting on the radio was lambasting the Salvation Army which would seem to employ such people on such a scheme. One of the leading lights of the Salvation Army came on to the show and told this do-gooder to wind his neck in. The Salvation Army wasn't in the business of making airy-fairy ethical judgements about the morality of such a scheme, nor was it interested in playing silly political games. It was trying to help specific individual people back to work.
From my experience of the Salvation Army (I was a member of their youth club as a boy, and did community service for them years ago) they are a really decent group of people. It was a shame this self-appointed bunch of do-gooders decided to have a pop at the Salvation Army. In doing so they merely made the Salvation Army appear better and made themselves appear themselves worse.

And then the bleeding heart loony leftie teachers came on the radio. It would seem that it is a hard life being a teacher because of the terrible behaviour of the brats in their care. Bad behaviour which is entirely down to the bad parenting skills of the feckless parents...
And my piss boiled.
When the fruits of my loin were of school age I might see them for half an hour in the morning before I would leave for work shortly after 7am, and maybe for an hour or two in the evening (when I got home after 6pm) before they went to bed. I tried my very hardest to instil a moral compass into the brats during those short hours, but my efforts were actively and deliberately undermined and thwarted by the crackpot loonies who taught my children. Every day for six solid and constant hours both fruits of my loin were brainwashed by these teachers into knowing that they could behave as badly as they liked at school with no fear of retribution. The teachers of my children made it very plain that it was not their place to impart any discipline or moral guidance to their charges. When the brats mucked about in the class the teachers would send me a report of the episode and would expect me to discuss the matter with the offending child in a calm and reasoned manner (!) And one of the teachers - one Dr Sheppard (head of science) - actually told me that were I to do anything other than to sit down and reason with my children about their recalcitrant attitudes then the school would formally call in the social services.

Extremely seriously terribly bad behaviour at school was punished by exclusion. When the child was extremely badly behaved they were told not to come in to school the next day. Apparently that was a punishment. It was rather frustrating that only I could see that such a policy just encouraged children to muck about more and more. The stupid teachers honesty believed this was a punishment.
I maintain that had the most recent fruit of my loin been given the cane (just once) things would have turned out very different. Children don't respect reason and discussion. They respect a crack on the bum at the moment of bad behaviour. When I was at school if anyone mucked about they got caned. It didn't happen often. It didn't need to. One child had a sore arse for a couple of hours and one thousand children behaved themselves for eighteen months. Seemed a fair price to me.
Let's be crystal clear on this. Bad behaviour in schools is entirely down to the regime in the schools. Bad behaviour needs to be tackled at the time it happens. Excluding a child from school for bad behaviour is no punishment. It is a reward. Bring back the cane. You don't need to thrash every brat. Just make an example of the first miscreant and all the rest will fall into line...
As I've said before there are two types of people who do not agree with corporal punishment for children. Those with no children of their own, and those with the most ill behaved brats you ever did see.
(takes a deep breath...)

Being Sunday the radio then had the Sunday Service. Today it was from Methodist Central Hall. Being an ex-Methodist myself I had high hopes for this, but I was disappointed. I don't listen to many Sunday services, but when I do, I want to hear old traditional stuff. Instead it's always modern happy-clappy drivel that frankly puts my back up.
I find that as the years go by I am seriously rethinking the aggressive atheism of my recent past and am beginning to wonder if all the platitudes I heard whilst in the Boys Brigade might just have a snippet of truth in them somewhere. Just possibly...
But if I am going to take up church membership (again) it will be something dull and traditional. I might even end up as a left-footer. You never know.

And so to work. I did my bit. Over a crafty cuppa I watched the weather forecast on the telly. As I'd driven in I'd seen that the fields that were white with snow yesterday were clear today. This had given me hope for getting out with Furry Face over the next couple of days. However the weather forecasters weren't so optimistic. Apparently there are winds coming straight from the North Pole for the next week which will make for yet more freezing conditions. I've had enough of being cold. And last Thursday I discovered a bridleway at the top of Park Farm I want to explore. I don't want to go off on a mission of discovery with a runny nose and a shivering dog who won't wear his coat.
I didn't mind being at work today. The last time I worked on a Sunday I missed a geocaching trip on which the protagonists ended up fighting the snow, and it tuned out that the same thing happened today.

With my bit done I came home to find my beloved was off at a conglomeration of candlemongers, so I spent a little while terrorising Furry Face. A week or so ago I bought him a rope ball tug toy thingy. It's all but destroyed now, but he seemed to like playing with it whilst it lasted. It would have been god if it had lasted longer than a week, but what can you expect from the pound shop...?

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