Archive for March, 2009

Malware – The Curse of Criminal Fingers

Posted in Britain, England, Europe, Hacker, Hackers, Prison, UK, USA with tags , on 29/03/2009 by floroy1942
Virus

According to the latest reports, there was a huge rise in malware during 2007. Malware, or malicious computer programmes, have been around for a long time, but security companies suggest there was a 500% increase in the number of variants of malicious programmes over the previous year. Who can guess what 2008 will bring. Criminals make ‘variants’ of malware to try and bypass anti-virus programmes.

AV Test, a software security testing organization, said they had seen 5.49 million unique samples of malicious software in 2007 which is five times more than the 972,606 it saw in 2006. Another firm called Panda Software said the rise represented a ‘malware epidemic’.

These programmes are not quite what you and I would call virus’s, trojans or spyware and the like, they are used for criminal purposes, and are far more dangerous. Criminals use them to gain access to computers to steal data, financial and personal information, or to access a bank for example, with the intent to steal money. There are also of course the hackers, whose main aim is just to cause mischief.

It is necessary therefore to have a good antivirus programme installed, but according to today’s information, the ‘epidemic’ was caused by criminals who were trying to redesign their software so that it would not be picked up by antivirus programmes. Oops! Food for thought!

What I find so disgusting about the whole affair is how seldom they are caught, and when they are, they get hired by some software company instead of going to jail. These people are without doubt the ‘Super-geeks’ of the computer world, but dammit, they commit crimes and make the lives of ordinary people miserable. For that they should be punished – severely!

It would seem the law makers only want to punish these people if they break into government computers. What about the rest of us?

There is currently a computer hacker in the U.K. awaiting extradition to the USA for breaking into, among others, US Defence Department computers. He is doing everything he can to avoid the extradition, even going to the Court of Human Rights in The Hague. I hope they turn him down. If convicted in the States he faces 25 years behind bars. But there again, it was government computer systems he hacked into.

If you or I end up being hacked or get a virus, we spend a lot of time getting our computer cleaned up and Windows reloaded, and who knows what data we have lost, and what it has all cost, but no-one gets ‘done’ for it.

I think I have a solution however. If these people are caught the law should consider amputating their fingers. Have you ever tried typing with your nose or tongue?

May your Windows always be clean!

Roy.

Free Download???

Posted in Britain, England, Human Rights, UK, USA with tags , , , on 28/03/2009 by floroy1942
Wow

Don’t you just hate the duplicity of websites on the Internet. When trolling through them you often come across ‘Free Download’ with the promise to ‘fix your computer problems’.

Guessing what was coming, I went to one that would keep all my drivers up to date. It may do, but free? Not likely.I won’t mention the company name, they might sue me!

The promise was there to scan my computer and tell me if any of my drivers are out of date, and the ‘free’ programme would fix them. So off I go, download the small programme and complete a scan. Fine! Then I am informed that a number of my drivers are not up to date, a fact that could cause me problems. OK fine! Then comes the crunch!

To fix these problems I need to buy the programme!!

I know, they are not blatently lying, because you can download the scan programme for free, but to get it to go past the scan phase you must buy it.

I think it is morally incorrect to inform people they have problems with their computer, with the implication that it can be fixed for free, and then later you must buy the product to fix the problems they found.

I have to say that this company’s products are good, I have used them before, but it doesn’t sweeten the pill of current marketing practices.

It is sad that today you cannot trust all you see. The methods employed by some people to sell you a product have become so devious, a simple person can easily get hooked into buying something they don’t really need. It is a sad statement of our times that in general, people will stoop to any level to get money out of you. They promise you the earth, but in effect it is, to a certain extent, a scam.

There are perhaps hundreds of products on the Internet like this one. I have certainly come across a few. It comes down to one thing. If it says ‘Free’, you should start thinking of how much it will cost, and alarm bells should immediately start ringing in your head.

Happy surfing!

Roy.

Religious Rights.

Posted in Britain, England, Environment, Europe, Government, Human Rights, Immigrants, Insanity, Justice, Religion, UK with tags , , , , on 26/03/2009 by floroy1942

Should open-air cremations be allowed in Britain? Some followers of the Hindu religion are pressing for the open-air burning of bodies in accordance with their faith, which is illegal in the United Kingdom.

According to Hindu religious beliefs, the body should be burnt in the open air, allowing the soul freedom to leave the body and be reincarnated. This 4,000 year-old practice is normal in South Asia, but in Britain is banned by the 1930 Cremation Act which restricts the burning of bodies to crematoriums.

Today, The High Court in London is hearing the case of Davender Ghai, a seventy-year-old Hindu. Mr. Ghai has received the backing of the influential UK Hindu Council Organisation and some Hindu temples in the U.K. He is requesting a Judicial Review of the 1930’s Law on religious grounds, and in part, on the 1998 Human Rights Act which covers the freedom to practice religious beliefs. In 2006, Mr Ghai was lucky to escape prosecution when he cremated the body of a 31-year-old Sikh man at a secret location in Northumberland. The Crown Prosecution Service decided not to pursue the case against him.

Not all Hindu’s agree with Mr. Ghai’s assessment however. Jay Lakhani, a member of the Hindu Academy educational body is quoted as saying: “Hindu scriptures should be interpreted judiciously and teaching does allow interpretation in a modern way.” He went on further to say he “could not understand why UK Hindus would want to dispose of bodies in an “antiquated” manner”.

While I have great respect for Mr. Ghai and his religious beliefs, I really cannot agree with his proposition. There has to be a limit on the rights of an individual who, of his own free will, is living in someone else’s country. There are too many people playing the human rights card these days just to get what they want, and they are usually a minority.

It has always been my firm belief that if you are, what amounts to a guest in someone else’s land, you should adapt as far as possible to the laws and traditions of that land. I say this as someone who has lived outside the U.K. since 1972 when I first moved to Holland. I am now a ‘Gentleman of Leisure’ in Spain. However, I have never asked for anything from either host country, I have always paid my way, and done my best to integrate into that country’s culture.

In Spain and many other Catholic countries, it is customary at Easter for processions carrying images of the Virgin Mary and Christ on the Cross to be held in every city, town and village. Imagine trying to do that in a Muslim country like Iran for example (worst case I know)! You would start a riot and be stoned all the way. Such countries do not allow any religious beliefs other than their own. I am almost afraid the Church of England will be disbanded because we might upset the immigrants!

The British have for decades been pampering the minority immigrant population, and in the process have lost their own national identity. I take my hat off to Boris Johnson the Mayor of London who said it is time we English started celebrating St. George’s Day, he is after all our Patron Saint. The Irish, Scottish and Welsh do, but for forty years the English haven’t because we are afraid to upset some minority groups. What rubbish!

It is time the British learned they are not a multi-cultural society, they are a society of British with a large immigrant population. That is the way every other nation on earth thinks of itself, why not us?

For example, an end must be made to schools struggling to teach classes in foreign languages because they have immigrant pupils. These children will grow up as citizens of Britain, and as such their first language must be English.

An end must also be made trying to make our country fit the ideals and beliefs of immigrants lest we offend them. In my opinion, if you can’t fit in, you know where the door is!

Thank God we still have free speech, or is that next on the agenda!!

May your beliefs always be yours.

Roy.

I Thought The U.N. Was Unbiased!

Posted in Arab, Britain, Child Abuse, Children, Gaza and Hamas, Insurgents, Islamic Revolution, Israel, Justice, Muslim, Netanyahu, Palestine, Religion, Security Council, Six Day War, Terrorism, Terrorists, UK, UN, United Nations, USA with tags , , on 24/03/2009 by floroy1942

Oh how naive I am! I have just read a report on the BBC from U.N. investigators under the leadership of Sri Lankan lawyer Radhika Coomaraswamy, and to be honest, I am amazed at the one-sided blame-laying she and her team have indulged in.

Before I go any further, let me state quite clearly, I am not on anybodies side and I do not support the actions of one group against another. Having made that clear I will continue.

According to Ms Coomarathingy, on the 15th of January Israeli soldiers used an 11 year-old boy as a human shield by forcing him to walk down streets ahead of them ‘for several hours’. This is one of ‘hundreds’ of such cases reported by her and the U.N. team for the protection of children.

Her report also includes soldiers shooting Palestinian children, and women, bulldozing a house with a woman and child inside, and shelling a building they had ordered civilians to enter. These, she said were just ‘a few of the incidents’ that had been ‘verified’ by U.N. officials in the Gaza Strip.

 

Hamas Not Guilty of Using Human Shields?

I guess they must have been talking to Hamas fighters, and civilians with a Hamas gun up their backside to get stories like this. The Hamas propaganda machine is very efficient in such situations.

Worthy of note, is the total lack of commentary on war crimes by Hamas, like using human shields, or shooting from homes, except to say it is ‘under investigation’, which means nothing will ever come of it because it’s an everyday occurrence, and anyway, they are such poor defenceless people.

Israeli Ambassador Aharon Leshno Yaar told the U.N’s 47-nation Human Rights Council, it was “unable or perhaps unwilling to address attacks against its civilians by Palestinian militants”. He further added, “The report claims to examine Israel’s actions while it wilfully ignores and downplays the terrorist and other threats we face”. He should have added their methods!

An Israeli Military Spokesman dismissed the claims as “inaccurate and politically motivated”. It is obvious that excesses have occurred, and the Israeli Military have confessed this and are dealing with it, but that too is the nature of war. It happened in the Second World War with Allied troops also. In war, none of us are ‘clean’.

All Muslim terror groups like Hamas know full well that in any conflict, the press love to report in full on civilian casualties, and have made good use of this fact.

Perhaps this will help clear it up for you, published with the kind permission of Osama Bin Laden:

Excerpt from a terrorist training manual: “Wow Achmed! Don’t forget, if the cursed Israeli’s shoot in your direction, grab the nearest child or woman! Also, don’t forget to go into the nearest family home if they start shelling you. That way you will be safe, well maybe not, but we will have great propaganda stories to tell the world press and the U.N. OK?” If it wasn’t so serious it would be funny!

Hamas have been using these tactics for years, and yet not one word of condemnation has been seen in the press or from the U.N., not even for the rocket attacks on southern Israel.

I do not condone it, and I do not agree with it, but the thing that sticks in my craw is all the blame is being put on the Israeli’s, while groups like Hamas are all lily white.

In my view, if you cannot report these things totally impartially, you can better keep your mouth shut and stay at home. You certainly have no business in this business!

May your dreams be untroubled.

Roy.

Justice Be Damned!

Posted in Child Abuse, Children, Europe, Insanity, Justice, Parenting, Prison, Relationships, Torture with tags , , , on 22/03/2009 by floroy1942

It has been revealed today that Josef Fritzl will serve his sentence in what amounts to a five star hotel. He was jailed for ‘life’ last week for murder, rape, enslavement, coercion and incest after locking his daughter in his cellar for 24 years, and fathering seven children by her, six of whom survived. Fritzl now gets to choose from three prisons under Austrian law.

His lawyer, Rudolf Mayer, says he will choose Garsten which is a former Benedictine convent converted into a prison. The facility has a gym equipped to the standard of any commercial venue, a choir. and one of the the largest prison libraries in the country. His hobby is reading.

The facility is set in woodland at the foot of the Alps and gives him the opposite of what he gave his daughter and her offspring, fresh air and light.

Although sentenced to ‘Life’, he will be eligible for parole after only fifteen years, living in conditions that many old age pensioners would give five years of their lives for. Whilst ‘inside’ he will be given the opportunity to follow many hobbies including tennis, art classes and darts. In fact, he will be living in conditions far superior than those of most working-class families today.

The one overbearing question that comes to mind is: Why? Whatever happened to Justice and the rule of punishment for a crime committed. In the last thirty years, Justice has become so soft that some criminals deliberately commit another crime just to get back ‘inside’.

I remember well in the 1960’s when Wakefield Prison in England was first opened. After seeing it on the TV News I and my collegues were disgusted, because the prisoners were housed in better conditions than we were in the RAF. In the Forces we were still living twelve to a room with a personal space the size of the bed plus a bit. These prisoners even had curtains on the windows so they would not feel bad if they saw the bars.

Now, in most ‘civilised’ countries, prisons are more like a five star hotel with everything provided for free, well except to the tax payer of course. Gone for good are the days when a criminal was punished for his crime, now many live in better conditions than they ever did ‘outside’.

The ‘Do-Goody Brigade’ was of the opinion that prisoners should be treated as poor misguided people that need comfort and reassurance with large dollops of luxury to get them back ‘on the right track’. Cobblers!!!!

More than half of criminals released early from jail for ‘good behavior’ go on to re- offend within weeks if not days.

In my opinion, it is time to bring back the ‘Cat’ for minor offenders, especially those under legal age, and for the rest, the good old chain-gang. There is so much good work these people can be doing for the country instead of working out in the gym, playing pool, reading books and generally lounging about at tax payers expense.

Should the Justice System ever get back to reality and make prison a place to be feared, I am sure people who have been ‘inside’ will not want to return. Once we resume making the punishment fit the crime the sooner we see a drop in murder, violence, robbery and crime in general.

For someone as heinous as Fritzl to be given such a punishment for his terrible crimes is downright immoral. It is disgusting and depraved. It is doubtful that his daughter, who is now 42, and her six children will ever be able to live a normal life, considering the horrible mental scars they must carry with them.

Referring to my previous Post dated March 15, It would appear that if you defend yourself or your property, or are maimed mentally and/or physically, you get a harsher sentence than the criminal who perpetrated the crime in the first place. Madness!

May your days be untroubled, and your nights serene.

Roy.

‘Middle of the Road’ Used to be a Group!

Posted in Britain, England, Environment, Europe, Germany, Insanity, Police, Spain, Traffic, Travel, UK, USA with tags , , , , , on 01/03/2009 by floroy1942

I reported on my road trip from Spain to Holland, and thought the item really begs a follow-on, because driving through four countries, was an ideal opportunity to compare driving standards across Europe, or part of it anyway.Driving in Spain is sometimes a lottery because the Spanish are VERY macho when it comes to their ‘Cocha’ and driving. In a newspaper article I read recently, they were decribed as “frustrated bull-fighters” that had taken to the road. I guess this just about sums them up really. Ole!!

In Spanish towns, you will often hear a cacophony of two-tone horns, single tone horns, and often cheeky beeps if you don’t pull away fast enough from the lights, or if you are accidentally blocking their route. It is not unusual to see someone driving at breakneck speed through the town and even worse on the motorway. For some, even traffic lights are to be ignored. Amazing!

As in most big towns world-wide, the scooters zipping in and out between cars is something that would give any old lady a heart attack.

I drive fairly regularly on one or two motorways where I live, and the most frustrating thing is people who drive down the middle lane of a three lane highway. They even sit in the third lane of a four lane motorway. This is extremely frustrating if you have to cross two or three lanes in order to pass them, and you waste your time flashing them or hooting at them because they will not move over – at least, not until their exit comes up. Overtaking on the inside is a regular occurrence, even if illegal.

In the seventies and eighties this was a constant problem in Britain and still is. There were even TV debates on the subject, and those guilty of this breach in highway etiquette, and the Highway Code, often said “But the inside lane is for trucks” Duh! Nincompoops! Idiots! It is quite obvious that none of them had ever heard of the Highway Code, let alone read it!

For my American readers, let me just say that in Europe you must overtake on the left (right in Britain) unlike the USA where you may, I believe, overtake on both sides.

Now to get back to the point, this is a constant occurrence both in Spain and Belgium, and the strange thing is, in both countries, the majority of offenders are women drivers. Sorry girls, but it is a fact. That is not to say men don’t do it because they too are guilty. It is sad to note that none of this has any impression on the Police in any country. They are completely disinterested in the entire affair and take no action at all.

Another annoying thing about driving in Spain is people who drive on full headlights all the time, totally ignoring the fact that they could cause an accident by blinding preceding or on-coming drivers.

I have often stated to friends that I would love to be a traffic policeman with a hammer. If I were, I would stop these inconsiderate individuals and smash their headlights on the spot. Perhaps they would be more considerate after they were forced to stay where they were until daylight, and then had the cost of repairs. Unfortunately, Justice is not that straightforward.

Anyway, on to France! In general I find the French are much more considerate than the majority of European countries. They will move over if you wish to overtake, however they still have their ‘middle laners’. They do have one throw-back to the sixties that they just don’t seem able to forget.

It was taught many years ago, that if you wished to overtake you put on your indicator and left it on until the maneuver was completed. If they were overtaking a string of cars or trucks this meant a long time. Today however, we have three and four lane motorways for which this system is not suited. If someone pulls out into the second lane to overtake, you do not know if they are also going to cross into the third or fourth lane also. A bit dodgy if you ask me.

Paris is of course a rule unto itself. They are plain crazy in Paris and if you look around you, nearly all the cars have dents and scratches like nobodies business. It’s scary!!! If you come out alive and unharmed you can thank your lucky stars once again.

As previously stated, Belgium is a pleasure to drive at night, if you don’t mind the noisy, bumpy ride, but here we have the same ‘Middle of the Road’ mentality as in Spain. As previously stated, most are women, and I wonder if they feel safer in the middle lane, or is it a statement thing. You know! Here I am and this lane is mine, do you hear, MINE!

Belgian men can be aggressive if you flash them because they are hogging the overtaking lane too much. Though in Spain the men are much much worse if you criticise their driving in any way.

Overall, the Dutch have improved from some ten years ago. Once they got into the outside lane on a motorway you could not shift them for love or money! Now, thankfully they have learned, somewhat, that the outside lane is intended for overtaking only. Most, but not all will move over when you approach from behind with the intention of overtaking.

In general, I think I can say with the utmost authority, that driving standards across Europe have fallen significantly over that past 40 years or so. Cars have become faster and more efficient at speed, but with that must surely come an increased awareness of the responsibility of the driver to control that machine in such a way as to be safe on the road, and considerate to other road users. Unfortunately both are sadly lacking.

Driving schools all over Europe have but one aim; To get you through the driving test as quickly as possible with the minimum of investment. Gone are the days when people were taught how to drive, and were taught all the rules for safe and courteous driving. No amount of investment will change today’s mentality.

So what do we do? I really can’t answer that question. All I can say is try your best to be safe and courteous and hope you don’t get mown down by some idiot.

May your wheels continue turning.

Roy

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