Discovery of seven Earth-sized planets orbiting nearby star

Thrilling discovery of seven Earth-sized planets orbiting nearby star


Exoplanets found orbiting Trappist-1 raise hope that the hunt for alien life beyond the solar system can start much sooner than previously thought

The Guardian has the story

I read Geology and Astronomy at University back in 1972 before changing to Law. I still retain an interest in Astronomy and Geology.

Law Review: How can you defend a rapist?

lucyread2Barrister, Lucy Reed, author of The Pink Tape blog is always worth reading.

“This : “but how CAN you defend a rapist?” is the apocryphal question asked of any lawyer at any dinner party she is daft enough to attend (actually the question is real enough, though I’m reliably informed by those who have a life that one doesn’t have dinner parties any more one has impromptu supper). It is unwise in the extreme to invite me to participate in a legal ethics quiz after more than a glass of red, because you might just get the full length answer. Fortunately for you, this full length answer is in the form of a blog post so I won’t notice or be offended if you turn your attention to someone else in the room and ignore me as I blather on….”

Read the article

Rive Gauche Cressida Dick to be new Met Commissioner

Cressida Dick appointed as first female Met Police chief

The Evening Standard: Family of Jean Charles de Menezes slam Cressida Dick’s appointment as Met Police commissioner

The new commissioner was involved in the fatal shooting of the innocent Brazilian in 2005

Story  here

Loitering with intent to use a tube station.


The Charioteer of Reason

I was listening to a programme on Radio 4 overnight and the narrator used the phrase”The Charioteer of Reason’.  It is a wonderful phrase describing perfectly the difficulties we have at times reconciling competing doctrines, different interests and different political philosophies.

I will shoehorn this phrase into my conversation  down at ‘The Auld Hoose Pub’ in Perth later …no doubt.

Up at 4.15, earlier than intended.  A coffee, a few smokes and then I plan to walk to Perth to catch a bus to Crieff and on to St Fillans on Loch Earn – a particularly beautiful loch about twenty miles from Scone in Perth & Kinross.

Turtle trapped in net…Why do we tolerate this?

I am not surprised that more and more people are turning Vegetarian…given the absurdity of human techniques of catching animals and seafood for the table..  I do hope that if you are planning to eat a Turtle or have Turtle soup tonight or over the weekend – that you have time to think  about this picture.  No Turtle Pizzas at Pizza Express in Perth, thankfully.


I assume the the World Winning photographer managed to free the Turtle from an almost certain death in the net? I really do hope so…if not, his photoraph is a travesty of the human spirit.

Rive Gauche :The buffoon President Mugabe of Zimbabwe has turned Souther Rhodesiaa into a basket case country

I spent my youth on Summer holidays from School in Scotland in Zambia – a wonderful country under President Kaunda, and visited Southern Rhodesia, as it was then was, now Zimbabwe.  Southern Rhodesia has been ruled by a troubled man – Mugabe since UDI in the 1970s.  It is now a basket case.   Hopefully, when Mugabe dies – nothing is more certain than “Death and Taxes’ – those who succeed will rebuild the basket case country.  I hope so.

My only visit to Southern Rhodesia, as it then was, was to run the Bulawayo Marathon (Rhodes grave to Bulawayo) – 33 miles, which I enjoyed doing was in 1972.  I stopped at various intervals.  Water bored me then as it does today, save for mornings, and I drank “Lion beer” en route and had a few ‘smokes’. One of the smokes was ‘Malawi Black’ – a local home grown grass…fun running when mildly high. (I was 20)  I managed a creditable time and came in 22nd.  I was very fit then.The winners were all 9-10 stone and very slim.  I was too heavy at 15st – muscle not fat, then. Useful for playing Squash and teaching Karate which I did for a while.  I enjoyed Karate.  I did Wado-Ryu – the fast fighting technique.  Not as stylish as Shotokan.  managed to get a Black belt with 3rd Dan.


I can still do most of the Karate moves and still have a Katana Samurai sword.  I used to have three of these swords.