Friday, 31 July 2009


Nice short title for this post. I haven't posted about Didactofeline for nearly two full years. So what is happening in the pussy world?

Apart from a few little teeth at the front of her lower jaw, Didactofeline has now officially lost all of her teeth. A few months ago, she was miaowing for a few days, until eventually we found a tooth on the floor. As soon as she lost the tooth, she appeared completely recovered, so obviously the poor little thing had had toothache. I don't know why she has lost all of her teeth, as she had lost most of them before she hired us (dogs have owners; cats have staff).

It hasn't dampened her killer instinct, though. Although the Mouse Season does not officially begin until August, Didactofeline has made at least two kills this year. Thankfully she has not attempted to bring either of them indoors. The first was a rat - yes, a rat - which I found dead in the garden a couple of weeks ago. I would say it is easily the biggest thing she has killed. It really is remarkable that a cat with no teeth can be such an efficient killer, but she has a very clever technique involving her claws and either breaking the prey's neck or suffocating it.

This week, a looked out of the conservatory window and saw her playing with her latest kill: a very small baby bird. She was doing her usual, picking it up with her front paws and throwing it into the air. I don't know if she is trying to make it fly again, or if she just likes the adrenalin rush of jumping and catching it.

However, what has been making the news in the west of Scotland recently has been sightings of big cats. This picture was taken by a military policeman near Faslane and this is the story of a big pussy cat apparently attacking a horse in South Ayrshire. Interestingly in the case of the latter story, there was a story about two months ago about a big cat being spotted in the area.

Didactofeline says that the big cats had better keep off her territory.

My namesake

Not really news for anyone other than me, but a curious affair nonetheless. Someone who shares my real name (ie not Didactophobe) has been posting on Conservative Home and Iain Dale's Diary: I find it quite disconcerting to look at a thread, see my name and know that it is actually someone else writing.

I don't have a particularly common name like John Smith; nor is it one that frequently appears, like Sally Roberts or Tim Montgomerie. But it is there.

Should I 'out' myself by posting a message to my namesake? Nah, that would be silly.

Thursday, 30 July 2009

Total Politics Best Blog competition

I have cast my vote for my ten favourite blogs in the 2009 Total Politics Blog Poll.

I have also emailed Total Politics, requesting that Didactophobia is reclassified as Scottish rather than English in their directory. It's not something that bothers me unduly, but there are occasions where I reflect on parochial matters, therefore best to be accurate.

Anti-semitism in Britain

The Community Security Trust (CST) has published an Interim Report, showing a large increase in the number of antisemitic attacks this year in Britain.

An unpalatable, but undeniable truth, is that the report shows that approximately 50% of the perpetrators are white and 40% are Arab or Asian. There can be few other crimes where the proportion of Arab/Asian offenders is so high relative to the proportion of white/black offenders, which points very strongly towards possible motivation for these attacks.

We have had twelve years of Liebour sucking up to Muslim voters (and in Scotland, we have the SNP giving hundreds of thousands of pounds of taxpayers' money to Muslim groups), whilst simultaneously making it clear that it is open season on Christians and Jews. Witness Glasgow City Council's recent sponsoring of an event in which cretins are invited to write obscenities in a copy of the Bible.

There is a problem with categorising anything as hate-crime, in that it fails to uphold the principle that we are all equal before the law. Desecration of graves, vandalism and assaults need to be severely punished because of the damage and hurt they cause: we should not be creating 'thought crimes' based on the private motives we impute to some offenders but not others.

I am a teacher, and I have from time to time posted on the message board of the Times Educational Supplement. If you look at some of the opinions expressed by so-called teachers whenever issues like Gaza are discussed, they really are frightening. If it is representative of the teaching profession, there is considerable anti-semitism among those who are paid taxpayers' money to educate our children.

A future Conservative government needs to tackle seriously the problem of anti-semitism, no matter whom it offends. Everyone who is in this country legitimately deserves the full protection of the law and the statistics for crimes against Jews since 1998 show conclusively that people will not be treated equally under a socialist regime.