Monday, 12 August 2013

Fun Online Polls: Lord Voldemort's Horcruxes & Bongo Bongo Land

The responses to last week's Fun Online Poll were as follows:

Which were the coolest/scariest of Lord Voldemort's horcruxes? Multiple votes allowed.

I have no idea what you are talking about - 58 votes

Harry Potter himself - 9 votes
Tom Riddle's diary - 8 votes
Professor Quirrel - 4 votes
Nagini the snake - 4 votes
Salazar Slytherin's locket - 3 votes
Marvolo Gaunt's ring - 1 vote
Helga Hufflepuff's cup - 1 vote
Rowena Ravenclaw's diadem - 0 votes


Thanks to the 81 people who took part, the 23 people who did know what I was talking about cast on average 1.3 votes each. I chose the locket and the ring myself, the others were neither cool nor scary. Nagini the snake? Pah! Nevile "cardigans are a sign of leadership" Longbottom chopped its head off and it died. Big deal. Not much more to say.
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And lo, to Godfrey Bloom's comments about sending aid to Bongo Bongo Land so that their dictators can buy Ferraris, flats in Paris and Ray-Ban sunglasses*, which provoked one interesting response by Justine Greening in today's Evening Standard:

Cabinet minister Justine Greening today hit back at critics of Britain’s aid spending, accusing some of them of wanting the country to “shut up shop”.

The Overseas Aid Secretary launched a staunch defence of UK aid projects including to Nigeria which has its own space programme and to Somalia where some supplies were recently seized or destroyed by terrorists.


Monkey says what?

Anyway, cut to the chase (hideous Americanism but fun to say), that's the topic of this week's Fun Online Poll.

Vote here or use the widget in the sidebar.

* I take his point about Ferraris and flats in Paris, but Ray-Ban sunglasses retail for under £200 a pop, that's tuppence ha'penny compared to some expense claims submitted by our MPs, or indeed by MEPs like Mr Bloom.

11 comments:

Bayard said...

I came across an interesting statistic, which sounds as if it might be true, which is that the average employee of an aid agency involved in spending government aid spends less than one day a year in the field.

Mark Wadsworth said...

B, sounds perfectly plausible. Link?

The Stigler said...

I find "bongo bongo land" pretty stupid. It paints a picture of Africans as savages, when in reality, Africa is much more than that. I've worked with sysadmins from Nigeria, and I know a company that has outsourced their call centre to Mozambique.

That said, I would cut all foreign aid, except for dire emergency aid like floods. Government spending money in the UK is bad enough with all the corruption and idiocy. Factor in the money going outside the country and it's going to be a lot worse.

(I thought it was the coastline around Cannes rather than Paris. Apparantly, you can pay taxi drivers to do the tour of all their houses).

Mark Wadsworth said...

TS, what's the difference between "Banana Republic" and "Bongo Bongo Land"?

I thought they were more or less the same thing. And clearly, he wasn't talking specifically about Africa, as he referred expressly to the Pakistani space program.

Bayard said...

I think the pols take a Bhuddist view of foreign aid, in that the merit accrues from the act of giving, regardless of what then happens to the money, or to put it more bluntly, it's international cock-waving, with someone else's money.

Chrometum said...

Mark

For me "Banana Republic" attributes the negativity to the state, "Bongo Bongo Land" does so to the people. Also his comment seems to be consigning the third world is the architect of its own problems myth.

I'm also assuming he's perfectly happy the aid question has been overshadowed. After all there is no way he would use that terminology without expecting it to cloud the debate.

Mark Wadsworth said...

B, yup. It's consipicuous consumption to impress the other world leaders at G8 summits.

Chr: "After all there is no way he would use that terminology without expecting it to cloud the debate."

He was speaking at a small presumably UKIP meeting and thought he could get away with it.

Little did he know that some fifth columnist in the audience was filming it and would send exactly the most embarrassing part (knowing Blook, certainly not the ONLY embarrassing part) to the meeja.

Whether or not he is "racist" is a complete side issue. If we knew for sure that all aid money was wisely spent and really benefitted the people in the recipient countries, then I doubt he'd be too troubled.

The Stigler said...

Mark,

A banana republic is originally a reference to places where one company owns the place (which came from banana growers in the early-mid 20th century "owning" Honduras and Guatemala). There's a pretty good Wikipedia article about it.

Mark Wadsworth said...

TS, yes, but in football, a banana counts as a racist statement.

Chrometum said...

MArk

"He was speaking at a small presumably UKIP meeting and thought he could get away with it."

That doesn't make it acceptable though does it? Imo it actually makes it worse.

Little did he know that some fifth columnist in the audience was filming it and would send exactly the most embarrassing part (knowing Blook, certainly not the ONLY embarrassing part) to the meeja.

Sorry Mark this is 2013. It would be naive to assume that it wouldn't be filmed, especially with the scrutiny the party is currently under.

"Whether or not he is "racist" is a complete side issue.

It would've been had he not used inflammatory terminology. He made it an issue.

If we knew for sure that all aid money was wisely spent and really benefitted the people in the recipient countries, then I doubt he'd be too troubled."

You can't sincerely believe that?

Mark Wadsworth said...

Chr: "You can't sincerely believe that?"

Of course I do or else I wouldn't have said it. I've no axe to grind here and cannot understand why people keep telling me what I think or mean when I've just made it perfectly clear what I think and mean and that is something different.