Thursday, November 27, 2014

Spam and Scams

Every day one hears of people having their computers or their phone hacked and money disappearing mysteriously.

Many people pay money for third party security for their computers and phones; but they neglect basic security themselves. They are running another operating system that is by default lying on its back waiting to be defiled, but it's OK because Symantec or somebody else is looking after them.

They are also quite happy to use those computers to do their banking and shopping; in fact to run their lives for them with all their utilities bills etc., getting them a discount for doing things online. The killer is that they are hooked in to social media 24/7 and when an email/message comes from their bank/service provider with a clickable link they are likely to just click and follow, they even have these banks/service providers as friends in Facebook or Twitter.

I do not  use online banking and do not fill in direct debit forms online either, because I think that the internet is fun and stupidly insecure, I am sceptical about any email/message from people that I don't know personally, and I know that Facebook/Twitter is as secure as a colander; they are not your friends, they view you as a data source and a revenue stream that they derive their incomes from.

My computers all run Linux because I feel that anything that is Open Source by default has huge numbers of people looking at the underlying code to make sure there are no serious security holes. I tend not to click on any link that comes in an email/message because that way madness lies.

Toodle ooh  for now, I'm off to make my foil helmet to save me from all those alphabet soup people that are supposed to be guaranteeing our safety!

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Elmer Fudd

It has been a busy couple of weeks for shooting from the hip expert Elmer Fudd, he is fully in favour of his friend blighting the views from Carmarthenshire County Council's most famous house, the Dylan Thomas Boathouse in Laugharne, and discounts the opinion, against the wind turbine, of the community council of which he was the chairman, until he suffered a vote of no confidence. This man who clings to his seat by just 5 votes doesn't seem to worry about the people of the  two most populous wards of his fiefdom. He should note that there was an overwhelming vote of no confidence by the people of his local communities in the form of a petition against the Mwche Turbine.

The Community Councillor that moved the motion of no confidence said it was purely because of his conduct as a community councillor, but I would argue that you cannot separate the actions of the individual from either of his elected positions. He sees that there is nothing wrong lobbying on behalf of his friend rather than represent the feelings of his electors. Perhaps he ought to consider his position and do the honourable thing?

Now I know that I am tilting at windmills looking for honour amongst the nest of vipers that is the ruling clique in Carmarthenshire County Council whose planning decisions are notoriously Quixotic , but these things have to be said.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

A dishonourable end

With all the shenanigans going on in Carmarthenshire surely we must have reached a watershed. I am the only person here that thinks things can't get any blacker for the busted flush that is the ruling clique in the county.
In any rational world someone would have fallen on their sword but it seems that that might just be wishful thinking on my part.
Who signed off on the Garnant golf club deal?
Who backed the seemingly bottomless pit of Parc y Scarlets?
Who pushed the council into the backing of a bowling alley?
All of these things have cost this council millions of pounds, with no seeming return on any of it.
Is this any sort of probity?
Then there is the unlawful payments fiasco!
Now we have the WAO  Public Interest Reports which slam both officers and the Executive Board, come on guys its time to go!

Of course I have to thank caebrwyn @ http://carmarthenplanning.blogspot.co.uk cneifiwr @  http://cneifiwr-emlyn.blogspot.co.uk/ and MrsAngry @ http://wwwbrokenbarnet.blogspot.co.uk/ for keeping an eye on all of the goings on with local government here and away.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

New year joy in Blunderland

Here we are barely two weeks into the new year and already I am baffled. Now you might say that there is nothing new there but I am talking about the glory that is our local county council. If you wanted a picture of openness and accountability you might be better off looking towards North Korea or inside the NSA.

At the monthly meeting the council had a debate about something they weren't allowed to talk about and the main subject was not in the room, I mean really how can this be? The so-called executive board talked about it and the blogoshere is awash with speculation, but most of us are still in the dark about the unlawful payments fiasco!

We had legal opinion withheld and waffle offered in its place, pace Linda Double-Barrel and then there were mysterious breaks in transmission; really professional and well worth the gadzillions laid out for the webcast! Not that I would want it stopped now that we have it, rather that than the PR guff that gets posted out under the misnomer of Carmarthenshire News.

I was always under the impression that the county council was set up to look after the best interests of the people that pay council tax and not to pander to special cases and lame ducks. One might ask to what I allude? Perhaps a golf club or maybe a racecourse, then there might be a rugby club and a clutch of overpaid executives with alledgedly lucrative tax dodges; but there is no doubt that the people of Carmarthenshire are not getting what they deserve of their elected representatives who worry more about their allowances and perks than either the lowly underpaid workers in their employ or the benighted council tax payer.

Of course they don't have to answer to the electors of Carmarthenshire until they have wittered away the next three years twiddling their thumbs and looking the other way while Llanelli sinks under the spill off from a favoured housing development or the kids in the north-east of the county while away their lives just getting to and from a new school built on a flood plain.

Are you all shivering the way I am?? Euchhh!

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Welcome to Alice in Wonderland

The Queen, a figure difficult to please, introduces her trademark phrase "Off with his head!" which she utters at the slightest dissatisfaction with a subject and the subject to hand is the matter of the council dealing with the unlawful payments debacle at the Carmarthenshire County Council full council meeting the other Wednesday.
Who is the Queen? You might ask, or indeed who is the judge or the executioner, watch the last ten minutes of this webcast and make up your own mind as to who wrote the prepared speech of the chairman to close the meeting.

And please look back through cneifiwr's and caebrwyn's blogs, oh! not to forget the wonderful Mrs Angry too. and laugh or cry at the state of local government in Wales and England.


Thursday, February 21, 2013

Catch 22 meets 1984

I am so grateful to the various people that have attended and tweeted about the libel action brought by Jacqui Thomson (@caebrwyn on twitter); they have kept us all up to date with what went on in court.

The one thing that intrigues me is the absolute silence from any elected member of council explaining exactly why they are willing to underwrite the legal costs of the highest paid local government official in west Wales.

Mrs Angry from BrokenBarnet covered the proceedings in the following blogs, listed in chronological order:
the-crucible-of-democracy-blogger
daft-arrest-caebrwyn-libel-case-at-high
a-term-called-malice-caebrwyn-libel
double-indemnity-day-four-in-caebrwyn
can-i-get-witness-day-five-of-caebrwyn
catch-22-meets-1984-day-6-of-caebrwyn

The last blog has an excellent postscript!

Monday, February 18, 2013

Liliput bigendianism or a libel trial of blogger

As anyone might be aware I have been following the shenanigans of Carmarthenshire County Council and the way they treat anyone who dares criticise the regime.

This is a council that is proposing to close public toilets for want of £90,000.... How much is being spent on two of the highest paid people in the county on a jaunt to London on the, to me, spurious jolly trying to defend the indefensible. I'm surprised that anyone with the least amount of common sense would institute proceedings in the Royal Courts of Justice without at least reading the supposed source of the offence, but Mark James and his acolyte Linda Rees-whatever are luxuriating in first class splendour to and fro at the expense of council tax payers.

I'm indebted to the tweets for MrsAngry of Barnet, newsbrooke and Cneifiwr for keeping us up to speed; and of course best of luck to Caebrwyn.