The Leverage of Beverage

In this short, six-minute educated podcast, a discussion between three students debate the current drinking age in the UK and the US which currently sit at 18 and 21 respectively.

Obama back in bringing with him at least 19 female senators.

During the last American elections in 2009, we saw the United States grow as they voted in their first ever African American president, democrat Barack Obama. This time round, with Obama returning for a second term, at least 19 female senators will help make up the 113th Congress – the highest number in U.S history.

Republican Deb Fischer (Neb.) and Democrats Tammy Baldwin (Wis.), Mazie Hirono (Hawaii) and Elizabeth Warren (Mass.) will be joining the Congress this time round. Also, with two Republican female senators retiring, 15 of the 19 women will be democrats.

“Democratic women in the Senate were the first line of defense against the Republican war on women,” stated EMILY’s List President Stephanie Schriock. “Voters saw the role they played, and they trust them to lead on the issues that matter to women and families. That’s why they sent every single Democratic woman up for re-election to the Senate back to Washington. It’s an incredible testament to the good work these women do in Washington.”

Also, this election saw Obama bringing American politics directly into the modern world by using Twitter throughout his campaign. Even at the end he used the social networking site to let the world know his success with three simple words and one heartwarming photo. ”Four more years.” The president tweeted – which became the most retweeted post in the history of the site.

American politics is no longer just for the traditional white middle-aged man.

If Scotland was America…

So, Hurricane Sandy. A Superstorm; the “Frankenstorm”.  Without doubt a force of nature to be reckoned with. America is used to such things: Katrina, Mount St.Helen’s, San Fransisco – they, as a Nation, know the drill.

Scotland however, not so much. The way we dealt with the last two winters stand testament to that. Granted, the Scottish people don’t piss their pants at the first sight of snow in the same way that our Southern cousins do but we are still partial to a wee moan about how cold it is or how the bloody gritter hasn’t been yet.

There is one trait however that I believe that we, as a nation, hold high over everyone else on the planet and that is our glorious ability to make light of literally any situation that is slapped in front of us, regardless of how dire the condition could be. Scotland is full of funny people. It is in our nature; our blood. Hence why when – for the first time in 30 years –  we are struck by what can be considered a small hurricane, do we officially name it? With a name that is statistically chosen to demand the greatest respect for the serious situation? No, the job was clearly given to Tam wae the good patter. And now history shall forever refer to that storm as…Hurricane Bawbag. Sort of poetically beautiful in a way isn’t it? Personally I love the idea of it being 100 years down the line, and on some version of BBC Scotland News where Jackie Bird is probably still inexplicably presenting, there will be a segment like “This Day in History” where they open the Facebook archive posts of everyone talking about the damage cause by Hurricane Bawbag.

And it is just this sort of sense of humour that is lacking from so many things in the world. Namely, like I said, in people across the pond in America. I genuinely believe that if we inhabited a chaotic world where Hurricanes, Tornado’s, Earthquakes and Volcanoes existed, we wouldn’t view them as forces of destruction beyond imagination, more inconvenient niggles that would disrupt us every now and then. Would we view them with respect? Hell no! Just imagine, rather than one freak occurence of a Hurricane, we would have whole seasons. Whole seasons of reports of storms named after human genitals. Tornado Alley (the area in the South and Mid-West of America that was named most likely to have Tornadoes each) year I imagine would be renamed the “Windy Tunnel” or something along those line. I would leave it to my fellow Jock to coin a phrase that would be both succinct and hilarious.

The point of this blog is less of a comment on how Americans should be trying to think of more jokes during events that I know demand an incredible amount of seriousness; more an endorsement of the Scottish people. Yes, the stereotype painted of us is not particularly a positive one: heavy, drinkers, smokers, fighters, swearers…heavy people in literal terms also; that we are a miserable bunch whose personality reflects the climate they are subjugated to year round… The list goes on.

However, speaking from an observational point of view, I think that we, as a people, are one of the friendliest, most inviting, most generally positive countries in the world. As expressed by our dearest Zimbabwean member, Arnold Bhebhe. We are not necessarily optimistic (lets not push it). But our collective psyche is one more of a jovial realism. In other words: we know our weather is crap, we know we will NEVER win the World Cup and we know that our ‘storms’ are a bit limp wristed too but at the end of the day, after 6 pints down the road with our friends, insulting each other and paradoxically becoming closer in the process…
We just don’t gee a f**k!

A miraculous survivor…

Ricky Gervais Turns Back On Britain

by Morag Robertson, Eilidh Walker and Nadia Younes

Ricky Gervais recently said, in an interview with the Radio Times:

‘Americans are brought up to believe they can be the president of the United States. British kids are told: “‘Don’t be stupid. It won’t happen for you,”‘

Ricky Gervais is known for making controversial comments on a matter of subjects. Below is a podcast of a discussion of some comments made by comedian Ricky Gervais on the subject matter of British youth culture and the contrasts in American youth culture.

They Aren’t as Scary as They Say They Are…

by Owen O’Donnell

I found this article on a comedy website which actually raises a few good points about how foreign countries aren’t as threatening as they’ve been portrayed on the news in recent years. While it really applies to America, I’m sure that you’ve heard about some of these stories in some form.