Posts Tagged ‘british’

Aviation Writer James Fallows Commits the MSM Blunder of the Year with “Don’t Blame Malaysia Airlines” in the NYT

Tuesday, July 22nd, 2014

Hoo boy: “Don’t Blame Malaysia Airlines

“Was this disaster somehow the airline’s fault? The answer is no — but to understand why, you have to look at the complex realities of modern commercial aviation.”

My isn’t this a touch patronizing? Well, obviously the primary fault is with the crew and commanders of the Gadfly missile system used to shoot down the plane. But Malaysian Air Systems is partially to blame for its negligent operation.

“Malaysia Airlines, already world famous because of the still-missing flight MH370, appears to have been following all normal safety rules.”

Is anybody suggesting that this flight was somehow illegal? I don’t think so. So talking about Malaysian following the “rules” is pointless.

“…explicit prohibitions are critical, because the entire aviation system works on the premise that unless airspace is marked as off-limits, it is presumptively safe and legal for flight.

OK again, Jimmy, the flight was unsafe but legal. Nobody’s suggesting that the flight was not legal.

“…when they crossed this zone at 33,000 feet, they were neither cutting it razor-close nor bending the rules, but doing what many other airlines had done, in a way they assumed was both legal and safe.”

Again, Jimmy, why are you harping on what’s “legal” to make your point that Malaysian wasn’t negligent? It’s as if the New York Times has turned into the Public Relations arm of Malaysian Air Systems or the government of Malaysia.

All right, it’s time to review. Here’s a partial list of airlines that were specifically avoiding this part of eastern Ukraine before the shootdown:

Asiana Airlines

Korean Air Lines  

China Airlines

Air France

British Airways

Air Berlin [Germany's second-largest airline]

The operators of these airlines would have been able to fly over eastern Ukraine legally, but they chose not to. Why’s that, Jimmy? Why would these airlines spend more on kerosene for no reason?

Mr. Fallows continues in The Atlantic:

Somehow I suspect that if it had been a Lufthansa plane that was attacked, there would be fewer starting-point assumptions that the carrier had somehow been cutting corners at the cost of its passengers’ safety. 

This sounds like it came straight from Malaysian Airlines, this racism (or whatever) argument he’s pushing. In any event, corner-cutting at the expense of passenger safety is exactly what occurred here.

And here’s the stinger:

“If a government or rogue faction shoots down a commercial plane, is that really an “air safety issue?” 

Well, hell yes it is, Jimmy. It’s exactly an air safety issue. That’s why all those airlines cited above, plus others, were avoiding the area. For safety.

Comes now aviation writer Christine Negroni to offer views contrary to that of flyboy fanboy James Fallows:

So while Malaysia is self-evidently correct it its statements; the airspace was open and hundreds flights between Europe and Asia were using it every day, it is a weak reply to a valid question of responsibility

Indeed.

Why James Fallows wants to shut down the conversation about the question of responsibility is a mystery to me…

Mr. Gary Oldman Graces San Francisco for “Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy” – British Consulate’s Sneak Peek – “Cool Britannia”

Thursday, November 17th, 2011

Well here it is:

“The British Consul General, Ms Priya Guha, requests the pleasure of your company at a reception prior to a screening of “Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy” November 16, 6:00-7:15pm”

O.K. then. And that’s not at all a typical kind of thing for San Francisco’s consular community, really, but our British Consulate-General is out there in the Bay Area promoting the heck out of Britain. (Cool Britannia they used to call it.) And actually that’s not a hard job when you have Kate Middleton’s Royal Wedding this year (and her recent California visit, dropping by just to say “hi”) and the upcoming 2012 Summer Olympics and whathaveyou.

Add to that list the start of a movie series that could rival James Bond and Harry Potter, who knows. It’s Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy (that’s a nice trailer, huh?) featuring Mr. Gary Oldman (H.P.’s godfather!) and, already, it has an obscenely-high 97% positive rating at Rotten Tomatoes. Check it:

“Based on the classic novel of the same name, the international thriller is set at the height of the Cold War years of the mid-20th Century. George Smiley (Gary Oldman), a disgraced British spy, is rehired in secret by his government – which fears that the British Secret Intelligence Service, a.k.a. MI-6, has been compromised by a double agent working for the Soviets.”

So last night, San Francisco’s first female British Consul General, Ms. Priya Guha, introduced this film at the Century 9 in Westfield’s San Francisco Centre. She pointed out that Britain is quite big in the movie biz, having over 100 film studios and 2500 post-production companies.

And then it was on with the show.

And then, who popped up as the curtain dropped but Gary Oldman and Director Tomas Alfredson. (Or so I’m told.) This very same crew was up in San Rafael two days ago and who knows where they’ll be tonight:

“OH MY GOD, Gary Oldman is coming to the Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy screening tonight?!!” 

Anway, I don’t have a shot for you, so:

INSERT PHOTO OF MSSRS. OLDMAN AND ALFREDSON WITH CONSUL GENERAL HERE

But I do have shots from last night of people who may or may not have wanted their photos taken, so I’ll leave them caption-free. (I’ll note that CBS Channel 5 was def. in the house with famous Liam Mayclem and Beth Spotswood (she’s earned a page on Wiki now? Wow) on hand.)

Don’t click to expand, don’t encourage him

So, Enter the Circus yourself, why not, starting December 9th, 2011.

See you there!

Prime Minister David Cameron’s Statement on the Recent Riots in London – Just Released by Consulate

Tuesday, August 9th, 2011

Our British Consulate-General has seen fit to send out Prime Minister David Cameron’s statement on the recent riots in London.

Here it is:

“I have come straight from a meeting of the Government’s Cobra committee where we’ve been discussing the action that we will be taking to help the police deal with the disorder in the streets of London and elsewhere in our country. I’ve also met with the Metropolitan Police Commissioner and the Home Secretary to discuss this further and people should be in no doubt that we will do everything necessary to restore order to Britain’s streets and to make them safe for the law-abiding.

Let me first of all completely condemn the scenes that we have seen on our television screens and people have witnessed in their communities. These are sickening scenes, scenes of people looting, vandalising, thieving, robbing, scenes of people attacking police officers and even attacking fire crews as they’re trying to put out fires. This is criminality, pure and simple and it has to be confronted and defeated. I feel huge sympathy for the families that have suffered, innocent people who have been burned out of their houses and to business who’ve seen their premises smashed, their products looted and their livelihoods potentially ruined. I also feel for all those who live in fear because of those appalling scenes that we’ve seen on the streets of our country. People should be in no doubt that we are on the side of the law-abiding. Law-abiding people who are appalled at what has happened in their own communities.

As ever, police officers have shown incredible bravery on our streets in confronting these thugs, but it’s quite clear that we need more, much more police on our streets and we need even more robust police action and it’s that that I’ve been discussing in COBRA this morning. The Metropolitan Police Commissioner has said that compared with the 6,000 police on the streets last night in London there will be some 16000 officers tonight. All leave within the Metropolitan Police has been cancelled. There will be aid coming from police forces up and down and the country and we will do everything necessary to strengthen and assist these forces that are meeting this disorder. There has already been 450 people arrested. We will make sure that court procedures and processes are speeded up and people should expect to see more, many more, arrests in the days to come. I am determined, the Government is determined that justice will be done and these people will see the consequences of their actions.

And I have this very clear message to those people that are responsible for this wrongdoing and criminality. You will feel the full force of the law. And if you are old enough to commit these crimes, you are old enough to face the punishments. And to these people I would say this. You are not only wrecking the lives of others. You are not only wrecking your own communities, you are potentially wrecking your own life too.

My office this morning has spoken to the Speaker of the House of Commons and he has agreed that Parliament will be recalled for a day on Thursday so I can make a statement to parliament and we can hold a debate and we are all able to stand together in condemnation of these crimes and we are able to stand together in determination to rebuild these communities. Now, if you will excuse me, there is important work to be done..”

“The British Consulate-General, San Francisco, is the United Kingdom’s diplomatic mission responsible for the Pacific Northwest (Northern California, Oregon, Washington State, Alaska, Montana, Idaho and Northern Nevada). The Consulate conducts all the political and economic reporting for the region, is responsible for economic trade and development, furthers science and educational opportunities and provides assistance to visiting British nationals.”

OMG, Soccer! It’s the FA Cup Trophy at the British Consulate – Manchester City vs. Club America at AT&T Park This Saturday!

Wednesday, July 13th, 2011

What’s this? AT&T Park is going to host its first international soccer match in a half decade this Saturday, July 16, 2011? Well that’s news to me!

Anyway, this was the scene today at the British Consulate, where Manchester City representative Gary Hopkins showed off the hard-won Football Association Challenge Cup Trophy to Acting British Consul General Mary Gilbert .

See? (If you want to see this historic trophy for yourself, it will be at the Union Square NikeTown sometime on Friday, July 15th.)

Click to expand

So it will be Manchester City vs. Club America at 5:00 PM at AT&T this Saturday. Get your tickets here.

“International soccer powerhouses; England’s Manchester City and Mexico’s Club America are set to play each other in San Francisco, Calif. on Saturday, July 16, 2011 at 5PM PST at AT&T Park as part of the World Football Challenge. 

With no shortage of funding, Manchester City (CITY) boasts one of the most star-studded rosters of any league after being owned by the ambitious Abu Dhabi Royal family. CITY is set to take Europe by storm this upcoming season after successfully defeating bitter rival, Manchester United, on their way to conquering the English FA Cup and finishing third in the English Premier League, thus providing automatic qualification in to the European Champions League, the most elite soccer competition on the planet. 

Mexico’s elite Club America is one of the most storied and legendary clubs south of the border with followers numbering in the millions, in Mexico City alone. This is truly an outstanding matchup for all soccer aficionados around the Bay.”

See you there!

 

ZOMG, It’s BritWeek 2011 in San Francisco! A Fortnight of British-California Events Runs Through May 12th

Wednesday, April 27th, 2011

Well it’s here, it’s BritWeek in the 415:

BritWeek 2011 will run from April 26th to May 11th in Los Angeles and Orange Counties, and until May 12th in San Francisco. As usual, it will highlight the many British links with California, including art and design, literature, music, film and television, technology, business, sport, food and fashion. The program ranges from star-studded red carpet events, to concerts and exhibits, to conferences and symposiums.”

OK then.

Now it just so happens that the British are having a royal wedding during this Fifth Annual BritWeek. So why don’t you be a sport and head over to 1 Sansome #850 in the Financh and sign the royal wedding book? You can use the elocution what you learned by watching The King’s Speech:

“HRH Prince William of Wales and Miss Catherine Middleton will be married on 29 April 2011, at Westminster Abbey in London. The British Consulate General in San Francisco will be celebrating by engaging the Bay Area community in all of the excitement. The following activities are planned: ~A royal guest book will be available at the Consulate for the public to sign from April 26-28th (9am-4pm)…”

This is exactly what it’ll look like when you’re penning your best wishes:

Via Zillapix

All right, all the deets:

Throughout BritWeek
BritWalk SF:
Fashion • Retail • Hospitality • Restaurants • Offers

Fri Apr 29
Royal Ceremonial Ball Celebrating the Birthday of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and the Royal Wedding. (This Event Is Sold Out)

Fri Apr 29
Celebrate the Royal Wedding with British Invasion Music at Cameron’s Pub in Half Moon Bay

Sat Apr 30
San Francisco Conservatory of Music Performs Elgar

Tues May 3
BritWeek SF is proud to support the Red Cross with an invitation-only VIP reception in the Penthouse of the Fairmont Hotel honoring sponsors and supporters of the Bay Area chapter.

Through May 5
54th San Francisco International Film Festival, featuring British films and coproductions

May 5 – Jun 5
An original Magna Carta on Display at the Legion of Honor. Exhibition organized by the Bodleian Libraries, University of Oxford, made possible by Qualcomm, Irwin & Joan Jacobs, and John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

Thurs May 12
Business Innovation Awards

See you there!

If You Drive an English Tour Bus in Golden Gate Park, Feel Free to Use the Wrong Side of the Road

Thursday, August 26th, 2010

This open-top sightseeing bus in Golden Gate Park has its steering wheel on the wrong side, cause it was made in merry olde Englande at the British Leyland factory.

Normally that kind of set-up a pain, but it’s a bonus when you’re stalled on Martin Luther King, Jr due to congestion near Music Concourse Drive. Just pull into the other lane and hope that the drivers coming the other way notice.

If you ever get pulled over by the SFPD or the Park police for driving the wrong way, address all concerned as “gov’ner” and feel free to throw in the phrase “me lorry” as much as possible. “See here, Gov’ner, me lorry is right hand drive, so….”  That should get you off the hook.

Why waste your petrol waiting in line when you can just jump the queue?    

Click to expand

Cheers!

Home Country of Assault Victim Rests Easy After San Francisco Attack

Wednesday, September 2nd, 2009

I’ll tell you, the reason why the home county of the exchange student who was recently sexually asaulted in San Franciscois resting easy these days is that the media of said home country isn’t aware of the attack. And why’s that? Apparently, it’s the policy of San Francisco to not give out that kind of information. Per the SF Appeal:

“Police are not releasing information about the country the alleged victim is from in order to protect her identity, Tomioka said.”

I’m wondering how small a country has to be such that saying its name discloses the identity of any particular tourist in San Francisco.

IMG_8524-copy

Like if there’s a famous exchange program in Monaco (population 30k) and they send ten students a year to the States? That would seem to fit the bill, fair enough.

But what if the exchange student is from one of the following Big Ten tourist-producing countries (countries avec concomitant robust, aggresive media, of course)?

Germany

United Kingdom

France

China

Italy

Japan

Canada

Russia

South Korea

Mexico

If the student is from one of these countries, I’d be hard-pressed to see how saying the name of the country would identify any particular person from that country. Maybe there’s a written policy, or maybe there’s an unwritten rule, the way the MSM won’t report routine cases of Golden Gate Bridge jumpings?

That is all.

The Unregistered Lamborghinis of San Francisco County

Tuesday, April 21st, 2009

The thing about San Francisco is that it’s crawling with oddly registered or unregistered exoticars. The kind of California license plates that come on Toyotas or Hondas seem to have a hard time sticking onto the rears of Ferraris and Lamborghinis in this town.

This aging Lambo Gallardo (the Spanish word gallardo translates into “gallant,” and from Italian into “striking”) typifies the breed. No license plates, but the infamous get-out-of-jail-free C.H.P. 11-99 Foundation license plate holder, well, natch, you’ve got to have one of those, right?

And the radar detector hanging in the windshield, that’s just the icing on the cake.

Zoom zoom.