Oooh, we like this

Like any traditional quiz show, \”Le jeu de la mort\” (The Game of Death) has a lively audience, a glamorous hostess, and a list of trivia questions for contestants.

However, unlike typical game shows, punishment for wrong answers is a 460-volt electric shock.

To chants of \”punishment\” from the studio audience, contestants zap their victims who scream in agony…

Torturing Froggies! What fun!

Eh?

A team of psychologists recruited 80 volunteers, telling them they were taking part in a pilot for a new television show.

They were instructed to pose questions to another \”player\”, and punish him with up to 460 volts of electricity when he got answers wrong.

Not knowing that the screaming victim was really an actor, the apparently reluctant contestants yielded to the orders of the presenter and audience, who also believed the game was real.

Actors?

You mean this is just a rerun of the Milgram Experiments?

Booooring. Real flesh and blood, that\’s what we want. With a French twist of course: teenage girl burnt at the stake perhaps?

The Glory that is Florida

There are many things I like about the story. But the best parts, for my money, are that she was getting her ex-husband to drive from the passenger seat. While she sat in the driver\’s seat (why?), shaving her tingly bits. To be \”ready\” for her boyfriend. With a suspended license. In an illegal car.

The glory that is Greece

Meanwhile taxi drivers stayed off the job for a second day, protesting changes that would oblige them to issue receipts, keep account books and pay tax according to their income.

Almost as good as the bus drivers\’ strike here in Portugal a few years back. Changes in the drink driving laws would have meant they could not have a glass of wine with their lunch. Thus the strike.

Govt backed down too….

Was he Welsh?

A LEG of lamb, aerosol cans and kitchen implements — are just some of the bizarre objects one veteran medic has pulled out of his patients\’ BUMS.

Welsh and dim that is?

Cue Daffyd jokes of course but really, that\’s not the way to do it, is it?

In praise of the Icelandic

The purpose of my (newspaper- financed) visit was an investigation of the genetic research centre where, a blood sample having been tested, the secrets of my DNA would be revealed.

“You have,” the director told me, “the cancer gene, the thrombosis gene and the Alzheimer gene.”

Looking for a silver lining, I added: “And the obesity gene?” Had not my mother told me “It’s the way you’re made”?

The director did not hesitate. “No. You are fat because you choose to be fat.”

Another admirable Icelandic characteristic is a reluctance to mince words.

Tee Hee, oh tee hee indeed

A cyberprankster broke into the Web site of Iran\’s hard-line president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, yesterday and created a page that offered a prayer for his death.

\”Dear God, in 2009 you took my favorite singer — Michael Jackson, my favorite actress — Farrah Fawcett, my favorite actor — Patrick Swayze, my favorite voice — Neda,\” it read.

\”Please, please, don\’t forget my favorite politician, Ahmadinejad, and my favorite dictator, Khamenei, in the year 2010. Thank you.\”

Christmas the American Way

Boy, do they live it up over there.

On Google Trends, the rankings of what people are searching for, you\’ve got:

Is Dunkin\’ Donuts open on Christmas.

I\’ve done some pretty strange things on the day down the years but never thought of a donut shop as quite capturing the spirit.

Oh my, what a surprise

Venezuela’s President Hugo Chavez yesterday ordered the country’s military to prepare for a possible armed conflict with Colombia, saying soldiers should be ready if the United States attempts to provoke a war between the South American neighbours.

Mr Chavez said Venezuela could end up going to war with Colombia as tensions between them rise, and he warned that if a conflict broke out “it could extend throughout the whole continent”.

Gosh, socialist strongman loses popularity, decides upon a war to boost support.

A real surprise that, isn\’t it?

Honduras

The de facto authorities have the support of many middle class and conservative Hondurans as well as the supreme court, congress and military.

I do rather love this insistence that all the lefties have of calling the Honduran government the \”de facto\” government.

If you\’ve got both the Congress and the Supreme Court on your side then it\’s pretty much a given that  you\’re the de jure government, not merely the de facto.

Especially since Zelaya was deposed entirely legally under the Honduran Constitution (even if his expulsion from the country was less than legal).

Doesn\’t he ever think?

One Murphy R asks this question:

Might it be small really is beautiful?

It\’s in relation to this:

Mr Jonsson has already become embroiled in controversy after it emerged that KPMG Iceland had been responsible for investigating events leading up to the collapse of Glitnir, despite the fact that his son was chief executive of the bank’s largest shareholder. KPMG later resigned from the case.

……

It has emerged that the son of Iceland’s Attorney General is one of two CEOs at Exista, which was one of the major stakeholders in Kaupthing Bank. And all cases sent from Iceland’s special banking collapse investigation committee for prosecution have to go through the Attorney General.

Well, actually, no, in this case it isn\’t true that small is beautiful. Quite the opposite in fact, small is exactly the problem. Iceland\’s population is slightly larger than that of Kingston upon Hull. In a population of a little over 300,000, with a workforce of what, perhaps 100,00o, perhaps 150,000 adults, just about everyone is going to be someone\’s brother in law, cousin or relative of some sort, aren\’t they*?

So, no, if you want to avoid perceived conflicts of interest, small isn\’t beautiful, no, small is the problem.

Doesn\’t the man ever think?

*Hyperbole, yes, but the point stands.