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For all the middle age punks out there, me and Kirk Brandon, spear of Destiny legend

First 5 days of sponsorship

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Thank you to everyone who has sponsored me so far in my 'what goes UP, must come DOWN challenge.

5 days into fundraising I have raised 54% of my target, the target was £ 500 and so far people have been kind enough to sponsor me for £ 265.

This is the link to my page if you want to sponsor me, thank you for the kindness if you do:

https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/michael-gumbrell4

I bought some new walking boots this morning, ready for my march up mount Snowdon. that gives me two weeks to wear the boots in before I walk up the mountain in them.

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For all the middle age punks out there, me and Kirk Brandon, spear of Destiny legend

TMA 5 Time

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All my study is concluded, time to write my TMA 05.

At the end of the block we were encouraged to have a look through the library at relevant articles.

It was a little disheartening, the quality of the works presented is exceptional and here I am, trying to write 2000 words that are on a pathway to quality. It did scare me, I imagine what I will write is like the scrawling's on a 5 year old child, compared to the works in the library. 

It is hard to see how my work is going to progress to a level that is even 1/100th of the quality of the peer reviewed articles in the Library.

Perhaps that is because I tend towards analysis rather than any ground breaking insight when I write. It is a little frustrating when put into a wider context, I work full time and study part time, so I tend to study to make sure I can pass my module rather than having the time and freedom to properly explore and drill down on the material I am studying. There are just never enough hours in the day to do everything I would like to do.

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For all the middle age punks out there, me and Kirk Brandon, spear of Destiny legend

some more published satire

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Here is the link to the micro news site in my home town.

follow the link for some more of my published satire on the local politics of my home town, Portsmouth.

http://www.starandcrescent.org.uk/2017/03/31/board-games-with-portsmouth-politics/


Thank you

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For all the middle age punks out there, me and Kirk Brandon, spear of Destiny legend

counting down the hours

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I have about 8 hours of study left in block 5. The last block, block 6 is revision for the exam, so very much the home straight now. I will have to write my TMA5 a week early because of my fundraising excursion to climb mount Snowdon the following week.

So time to stop procrastinating and get on with wrapping block 5 up....

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For all the middle age punks out there, me and Kirk Brandon, spear of Destiny legend

What goes UP must come DOWN

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What goes UP must come DOWN.

Which is me, i have to now squeeze my TMA 5 in 7 days before the cut off date because i will being doing something else on deadline day.

On Wednesday 19th of April i will be climbing up Mount Snowdon.

This will be the UP part of my challenge, and on Sunday 28th of May i will be abseiling DOWN the Spinaker Tower ( 103 meter's or 315 feet). all to raise funds for my chosen charity.

Here is the link to my just giving page, it would be wonderful if any of my fellow students could sponsor me to complete this challenge,

https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/michael-gumbrell4


Thats the UP.

This is the DOWN


and this is who i am fund raising for,


your support would be very much appreciated,

Mike

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For all the middle age punks out there, me and Kirk Brandon, spear of Destiny legend

Still more hits

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I want to thank you all for taking the time to visit my blog,

My views have just passed 1250, which is fantastic, and I appreciated you all taking the time to read my blog.

At the moment my audience grows by 45 people a day, I think that is amazing, I only took to using this blog properly a couple of months ago, before that I had put up 3 posts in 18 months, so it was a choice on my part to get more involved and use my blog to it's full potential.

I am enjoying the experience very much, I have partnered this blog with my blog site and set up a partnership page on Facebook to try and pull it all together.

So once again thank you all for taking the time to read my blog, and thank you very much to all the people who have taken the time to comment and challenge some of the things I have written.

Here are my other links, they have less posts than this blog, but some are a little different and contain a different set of comments....

Thank you

www.thespecialistgeneralist.net

and

https://www.facebook.com/thespecialistgeneralist/

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For all the middle age punks out there, me and Kirk Brandon, spear of Destiny legend

Interconnectedness

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Interconnectedness, is not a made up word, it appears in my module, it alludes to the collectivist perception of international relations.

so I thought I would try a little interconnectedness, so as well as my blog website:

www.thespecialistgeneralist.net

I also created a Facebook page to run along side it for extra digital presence and enhanced interconnectedness.

https://www.facebook.com/thespecialistgeneralist/

I urge you all to like my page on Facebook, please.

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For all the middle age punks out there, me and Kirk Brandon, spear of Destiny legend

Scottish Independance

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Edited by Michael Gumbrell, Sunday, 26 Mar 2017, 11:36


From the www.thespecialistgeneralist.net


The Second Scottish referendum.


Or


You can supranational away our sovereignty, but you’ll never take our ‘freedom’.


 


So the Scottish had a independence referendum, 3 years ago. The result was a NO to independence by a wide 10% majority. Job done, message sent, VHS copies of Braveheart put away and a continuation of the continuum by the UK.


Described at the time by the lead Yes to independence campaigner and head of the Scottish nationalist party, Alex Salmond, as a ‘once in a generation’ vote. Well generations move very quickly in Scotland, 3 years later the generations who voted to remain in the union (baby boomers, generation X and millennials) look set to vote again. This time we might have a second ‘once in a generation’ vote in a second generation (baby boomers+3,  Generation X+3, millennials+3 and generation Y-those born in the first 18 months of generation Y only though, these 3 year generation gaps really do stop a real divergence of generational voting demographics!).


Perhaps Mr Salmond, meant something different when he spoke of generations. Perhaps it was a threat, do it now or you will never get to do it again. Perhaps that was the motivation behind his evaluating the referendum as a generational defining moment. This is a historic vote everyone, best do your best, and bring home the result us nationalists have been longing for. The hopes of the nationalist Salmond were dashed, but his replacement, Mrs Sturgeon (that fishy surname confluence might come back to haunt these two, later in this article-when I am looking at the economic claims made by them both and the SNP).


So what changed?


We had a Uk wide referendum about our membership of the European Union. In which we voted, by a 4% margin, to leave. Scotland voted by a 24% margin to remain- now that is a big margin-if the population of your slice of the Uk was bigger than 8.5%. This disparity of a 24% margin of 8.5 million Scottish voters is the basis for the calls for a second referendum. If the entire population of Scotland had voted remain, 100%, the result would have been the same, Leave, instead of a 4% margin, it would have been a 1% margin for the Leave campaign. So Scotland might not liked the result, but they could not have changed it, even with 100% return. So was that demographics over democracy or just the social contract in operation? Either way it is enough to warrant the new SNP calls for a second-once in a generation-independence referendum, because Scotland does not want the result of the EU referendum to stand for them.


 


So the whole UK voted to leave the EU, if you consider the whole UK to be a democratic union. Scotland does not seem to feel this way, they are unhappy with the democratic result of the union they are in, so wish to leave the union to restore their democratic membership of the E.U. So rather than leave the EU as part of the world’s 5th largest economy ( and forecasted to become 4th, over taking Germany, in the next 10 years) the Scottish would aim to leave the Union and re-join the E.U as an independent economy, an economy that is 43rd largest in the world and 12th largest in the E.U. and about the same size as Chile in a global perspective or Ireland in an E.U perspective.


 


Lots of claims were made by Nationalist’s in the first, once-in-a-generation independence referendum. Three years having passed some of the claims made the firs- time round can be viewed with better perspective if a second referendum comes about. Mr Salmond had claimed that the revenue from oil production would be, in the first year of independence, £ 8 billion pounds (UK pounds), where as the actual figure as audited by the national Audit office was £ 600 million (still in UK pounds). Mr Salmond was wrong by a factor of 1300%, or to put it another way 3% of the total Scottish GDP!. This is staggering, but then if you are going to tell a lie, try to make it a whooper. If a second referendum goes around then Ms Sturgeon will not be able to be quite so ‘liberal’ with the projected oil revenue’s. So if granted a second referendum, the SNP will not be asking to leave the union so it can be an independent country, it will need to leave the union so it can join the E.U asap because it will need the euro, the European central Bank and the subsidies that the E.U provides to survive as an independent economy, I do appreciate the this is an oxymoron, to be an independent economy whilst being locked to a currency union, central bank loans and a group wide economic policy, does not sound very independent at all. It all sounds a bit fishy really, not that Mr Salmond or Ms Sturgeon would recognise the pun.


So we will see, Mrs May has already refused a second referendum, the Scottish parliament is still discussing if they should even ask for one, and the SNP are still curtailing generations to 3 year spans and declaring everything that is not to their liking as ‘undemocratic’. So while the world turns, liberalism in western societies continues to spin, the SNP are sounding like a broken record (we have to presume a Rod Stewart record).


 


‘you will never take our freedom’ *


* Terms + Condition’s apply, the word freedom may be substituted for currency union, economic union, ECB debt and IMF influence over internal political policy or supranational influence of a state’s sovereignty by the E.U at any given time.


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For all the middle age punks out there, me and Kirk Brandon, spear of Destiny legend

the end of history.

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i am coming to the end of the module now.

one more week of study planner, one final tma to write, one online quiz and the exam.

I have been looking very closely at fukuyama's concept of the end of history, that we are in a stable neo-liberal stasis, that no further events will be extreme because we have liberally stabilised. I am not sure I agree with that, especially as that principle seems to condemn the poor nations to remain behind forever.

Well now to stop procrastinating and polish off the final week of study and get the TMA 5 done. 

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For all the middle age punks out there, me and Kirk Brandon, spear of Destiny legend

simulated human rights

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as part of my module we have to conduct a role play, to do with international law and human rights, interventionism, the UN and the sovereignty of the state. It is available on open learn and the link to the simulation is here.

http://www2.open.ac.uk/openlearn/savingsetrus/

It is interesting and disturbing at the same time, I have role played it twice and scored 78 % both times, taking different stances with both the UN and military action. I had 100% scores for both legal and political actions, but my humanitarian score was low.

It seems to be making the point that if you act or don't act, the humanitarian side of the scores is always lowest, if you go straight in with troops and aid you will score a high humanitarian score but fail on legal and political scores.

I invite you all to try the role play, please comment your scores here, I would like to know if there is a optimal path through the role play.

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For all the middle age punks out there, me and Kirk Brandon, spear of Destiny legend

Specialist satire

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Here is my latest offering for the micro news site in Portsmouth.

I have squeezed Portsmouth city councils year into the news that monopoly has been updated.

I hope you enjoy it, even if you are not local to Portsmouth

I quite like this one, I might get accused of having idea's above my station (Fratton)

For any one who reads this and has ever been in the Navy, then you know what

'getting off at Fratton' means !

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For all the middle age punks out there, me and Kirk Brandon, spear of Destiny legend

satire published

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Here is the link for the starandcrescent.org where some more of my satire has been published.

as ever I am grateful to my editor, Sarah, for her wise words and patience.

http://www.starandcrescent.org.uk/2017/03/22/pompey-satire-trumps-cards-cronies-and-cat/


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For all the middle age punks out there, me and Kirk Brandon, spear of Destiny legend

TMA 5

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Just trying to get my head around TMA 5. Globalisation and political practice is hard.

Fukuyama has much to ssy about the end of history on thst subject.

I am just sweating the end of this block and tma 5.

Oh look, another level 2 is hard post from me. Well it has been a couple of weeks since i mentioned it.

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For all the middle age punks out there, me and Kirk Brandon, spear of Destiny legend

Hitting a mile stone

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Edited by Michael Gumbrell, Friday, 31 Mar 2017, 08:34

The views counter is now at 1066.

Which made me chuckle. For those of you who have worked in buildings with digi locks on doors to staff only areas, hands up how many had the button code,  1066?

Next mile stone will be 1648.

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more hits.

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That is a lovely surprise, only a week ago i was thanking everyone for getting my blog views up to 750.

Here i am a week later and it is on 1000.

Thank you so much for taking the time to read my blog. i know it can be a bit generalist in content, but that is part of the fun, right?

I feel very blessed now.

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For all the middle age punks out there, me and Kirk Brandon, spear of Destiny legend

a new style of self reflection.

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Well level 2 continues to surprise me.

for our TMA 5 we have to post our essay plan in a online forum. This is quite a challenge for me, as I do not tend to write an essay plan out, I do a simple spider diagram of what I want to say in sections, why I want to say it and then sit and write the essay in one sitting, then save and revisit twice over a couple of days, making revisions at each sitting.

So to produce a plan was new to me, but I made an infographic of my spider diagram, so hopefully this is a correct submission. We then have to write a self reflection about how looking at other students essay plans made us realise the strengths and weaknesses in our own essay's. It carries a 15% chunk of the final mark. So it is quite an important element to get right.

Hopefully my essay plan infographic is strong enough to help other make the strength and weaknesses cases in their own self-reflections, otherwise I might let the side down.

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For all the middle age punks out there, me and Kirk Brandon, spear of Destiny legend

Tutorial 5

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So i enjoyed the tma5 tutorial. It was interesting and really made me think.

I am personally an international realist and so my tma will be in that context.

Nearly at the end of this module now.

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For all the middle age punks out there, me and Kirk Brandon, spear of Destiny legend

weddings and tutorials

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so i have a tutorial this Saturday, all booked are ready to go,

I might be hanging at the tutorial,because my sister in law is getting married on Friday, so that is a busy day and evening for me.

Not sure I will have time free to write a blog this Sunday, which is a shame because we have the SNP demands for a second referendum and the Dutch elections this week, plus we might see article 50 triggered in the next 7 days.

I will try and find time to cover the Dutch election, I mentioned it in my 'summer of brexit' article, so it will be interesting to see the results.

For the SNP independence blog, I fancied having  look at that from an economic perspective, did you know that the IMF has predicted that the UK economy will grow to larger than Germany's  in the next 10 years, so Scotland might have to think very carefully from an economic perspective, after all, when isolated, Scotland's GDP is the same as Slovakia or Estonia. Is Scotland's economy big enough to survive in a globalised world? In the first independence referendum, the SNP made much of the income from oil, they estimated in to be 12 billion in the first 3 years, where as the actual figure was 800,000 million! Can the new predictions from the SNP be taken seriously when they got it wrong last time by 1400% ?, also it is very interesting because if there is a second referendum, Scotland and the SNP will be talking a lot about 'freedom' and from a philosophical perspective, is seeking independence from England and staying on board with the super international aspirations of the E.U more 'Free' than remaining in a union with the U.K that is removed from the E.U? something to write about there, for sure.

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For all the middle age punks out there, me and Kirk Brandon, spear of Destiny legend

Mark arrived

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My feedback for tma 4 came in this evening.

I scored 82% so not bad, i think this module is coming in at a pass grade 2. 

I would need to find 3 extra percent and scored 89% on my final tma plus 85% on my exam to get a distinction. Thanks a stretch, so a grade 2 pass is more likely for me.

I will have to make sure i really stick the exam to be sure.

 

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For all the middle age punks out there, me and Kirk Brandon, spear of Destiny legend

errors upon errors

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I do have a question about how many errors or miss-prints are considered reasonable in module text books and the study planner?

For my module DD211, we have had the following:

TMA 2 guidance notes were incorrect

TMA 3 guidance notes were incorrect

TMA 4 guidance notes were incorrect

TMA 5 guidance notes were incorrect

Week 14 had dead links in it

Week 19 had incorrect information in it

Wee 21 had dead links and missing information in it.

Plus the whole online tutorial event on the 5th of October failed to work, despite us all wanting to do it because we had missed our first lecture because the tutorial booking system was a mess.

all this came after a update to the module books in June 2016, which i include here because some of the typo's are funny.

  • Book 2, Block 4, chapter 14, page 41. Tony Blair was elected in 1997 and left office in 2007
  • Book 2, Block 4, chapter 14, page 42. Jimmy Carter left office in 1981, not 1991
  • Week 26 audio transcript for “Political concepts revisited” should read “serfs” and not “surfs”
  • Week 26 section 4.2 the audio interview with Richard Heffernan indicates that in the US decisions on smoking in public places are covered by federal law. This should be 'state' law rather than 'federal' law.

Serfs not surfs!


Does anyone else have this kind of level of errors in the course materials?

Or have DD211 this year just been extra lucky?



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