Avatar for Oliver Schick

Oliver Schick

Member since Sep 2008 • Last active Oct 2019

Most recent activity

  • in Miscellaneous and Meaningless
    Avatar for Oliver Schick

    Yes, absolutely. I don't think there's anything wrong with parents hoping that their child won't be disabled, either. However, as many experiences have shown, parents kind of have to actually meet their child first to be able to love the child, and God knows there are plenty of 'non-disabled' children for whom the relationship to their parents is less than ideal.

    Apart from that, one of the main reasons for the stigma surrounding learning disabilities in particular, I think, is a deeply-ingrained idea that somehow it's a bad thing if someone has to be cared for. Sure, we would all wish that everybody could be fully independent, but if someone has to be cared for, that shows the importance of care.

    You sometimes get the impression that it's almost as if some people don't want to be confronted with that idea, much as many don't want to be confronted with the reality of homelessness, for instance, or the 'work' (which is obviously not voluntary) homeless people often do in reminding people that these injustices exist.

    Needless to say, people with learning disabilities are very different, but there is something about someone having to be cared for that brings people together around them, and difficult though that sometimes is, it is a good thing and improves our idea of what it means to be human. It's for that reason alone that we should value the existence of learning disabilities, and the people who have them, while all the other reasons obviously apply.

  • in Miscellaneous and Meaningless
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    This is one of the best pieces of spin I've seen for a good while:


    The campaign group says the current debate around meat and livestock has been one-sided, and that livestock’s contribution to biodiversity, bioenergy and the rural economy has been overlooked. “An EU without livestock would not only lose locally produced food, but also essential habitats and biodiversity. It would also mean increased fires, lack of natural fertiliser and green energy, and a rural exodus,” it says.

    “The solution lies in a more plant-dominated diet but with a modest amount of high-quality livestock product – which is valued for the key nutrients it contains, its soil-improving properties and the landscape we all want to support and live in,” he said.

    In a way, this is the best bit:

    “It is well known that a section of the European population over consume animal products, but there is no evidence to suggest that reducing production will lead to any decrease in consumption. The consequences of a drastic reduction on consumption of animal products by replacing them with ‘meat substitutes’ or other activities could well be worse than the benefits of meat consumption, without leading to a significant environmental or health improvement.”

    (My emphasis.)

    So much equivocation and poor thinking. Of course nobody suggests removing animals from 'rural' areas or fails to recognise the vital ecological role they play. What kind of landscape do we really 'want to support and live in'? I would think that we should make serious changes to the 'landscapes' that we have created, as much about them is awful. Much better ways are possible, e.g. as we would need less land to grow food (permaculture, for instance), we would create re-wilded animal habitats that would be a lot more sustainable than factory farm slurry pits.

    Obviously, the rural economy would have to be reconfigured; as it is, much of its former economic model has been dead for decades, anyway.

  • in General
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    If you want to see RPM, you have to hang around the mean streets.

  • in Miscellaneous and Meaningless
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    Can anyone think of good examples of films that are as good/ better than the book?

    Not off the top of my head, but I've seen a lot of films based on rubbish books, so in a way that bar is not too high. I'd say some of the 50s pulp fiction transfers to the big screen would probably qualify, although I can't say that I've read a lot of pulp fiction.

  • in Miscellaneous and Meaningless
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    RASA N16. I know I recommend it all the time, but there are reasons.

    Er oops. Only just read 'not Indian' not as 'Indian'. :)

  • in Miscellaneous and Meaningless
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    The Guardian has been doing a series on individual stories of homeless people who have died in the recent past. Here's one:


    More here: