Guys - we are just as bad. I dont know why but we we all seem intent of nit-picking the tinyist little thing and making a massive deal out of it. Like if the train is ten minutes late - you get people being arrested for physically assaulting station staff, or when you have a massive scream and shout bringing McDonalds to a standstill because the immigrant worker behind the desk misunderstood your request for no gherkin. Or when people demand compensation and threaten legal action to the beleaguered crew of the Cross-channel car ferry because they are being sick because the weather is bad. There seems to be a blame culture here and for everything bad in the world - the brits prefer to blame one person if possible, and spit out a venomous torrent of vitriolic hate whenever that person even comes up in conversation. Its gotten to the point now, where being angry and blaming someone for something is "cool" and "in fashion" (thats mostly the fault of the media over here but thats a different thread) and so people start looking for mistreatment and malpractice just so they can have their sickeningly self-righteous rage. This is whats happening with this thread - the tiniest little thing, a passing joke, and nothing more, and someone feels the need to be indigant about it, as if this little joke has somehow personally offended them and infringed on their civil liberties.
We dont have a lawsuit culture yet, but we are experiencing political correctness gone mad over here and its annoying the hell out of me. To raise the tone of the thread, so it doesnt get too depressing - Ive posted a rather funny and painfully true exchange between Nelson and Hardy on the fighting top as they prepare to take the English fleet into battle against the massed French and Spanish fleets at Trafalgar.
How would Nelson have fared if he had been subject to modern health and safety regulations ?
"Order the signal to be sent, Hardy."
"Aye, aye sir."
"Hold on, that's not what I dictated to the signal officer. What's the meaning of this?"
"England expects every person to do his duty, regardless of race, gender, sexual orientation, religious persuasion or disability. What gobbledegook is this?"
"Admiralty policy, I'm afraid, sir. We're an equal opportunities employer now. We had the devil's own job getting 'England' past the censors, lest it be considered racist."
"Gadzooks, Hardy. Hand me my pipe and tobacco."
"Sorry sir. All naval vessels have been designated smoke-free working environments."
"In that case, break open the rum ration. Let us splice the main brace to steel the men before battle."
"The rum ration has been abolished, Admiral. It's part of the Government's policy on binge drinking."
"Good heavens, Hardy. I suppose we'd better get on with it. Full speed ahead."
"I think you'll find that there's a 4 knot speed limit in this stretch of water."
"Damn it man! We are on the eve of the greatest sea battle in history. We must advance with all dispatch. Report from the crow's nest, please."
"That won't be possible, sir."
"Health and safety have closed the crow's nest, sir. No harness. And they said that rope ladder doesn't meet regulations. They won't let anyone up there until a proper scaffolding can be erected."
"Then get me the ship's carpenter without delay, Hardy."
"He's busy knocking up a wheelchair access to the fo'c'sle Admiral."
"Wheelchair access? I've never heard anything so absurd."
"Health and safety again, sir. We have to provide a barrier-free environment for the differently abled."
"Differently abled? I've only one arm and one eye and I refuse even to hear mention of the word. I didn't rise to the rank of admiral by playing the disability card."
"Actually, sir, you did. The Royal Navy is under-represented in the areas of visual impairment and limb deficiency."
"Whatever next? Give me full sail. The salt spray beckons."
"A couple of problems there too, sir. Health and safety won't let the crew up the rigging without crash helmets. And they don't want anyone breathing in too much salt - haven't you seen the adverts?"
"I've never heard such infamy. Break out the cannon and tell the men to stand by to engage the enemy."
"The men are a bit worried about shooting at anyone, Admiral."
"What? This is mutiny."
"It's not that, sir. It's just that they're afraid of being charged with murder if they actually kill anyone. There's a couple of legal aid lawyers on board, watching everyone like hawks."
"Then how are we to sink the Frenchies and the Spanish?"
"Actually, sir, we're not."
"No, sir. The Frenchies and the Spanish are our European partners now. According to the Common Fisheries Policy, we shouldn't even be in this stretch of water. We could get hit with a claim for compensation."
"But you must hate a Frenchman as you hate the devil."
"I wouldn't let the ship's diversity co-ordinator hear you saying that sir. You'll be up on disciplinary."
"You must consider every man an enemy who speaks ill of your King."
"Not any more, sir. We must be inclusive in this multicultural age. Now put on your Kevlar vest; it's the rules."
"Don't tell me - health and safety. Whatever happened to rum, sodomy and the lash?"
"As I explained, sir, rum is off the menu. And now there's a ban on corporal punishment."
"But how are we to keep order, and discipline?"
"We are only allowed to order a time out for insubordination, treason, and cowardice Sir"
"What about sodomy then?"
"I believe thats to be encouraged Sir..."
"In that case ...kiss me, Hardy."
What do you mean you dont have any bourbon? Do you know how far it is to Houston? What kind of airline is this???