By Akira The Don on Tuesday, January 11th, 2011

From The Independent:

The Royal Family is to be granted absolute protection from public scrutiny in a controversial legal reform designed to draw a veil of secrecy over the affairs of the Queen, Prince Charles and Prince William.

Letters, emails and documents relating to the monarch, her heir and the second in line to the throne will no longer be disclosed even if they are in the public interest.

Sweeping changes to the Freedom of Information Act will reverse advances which had briefly shone a light on the royal finances – including an attempt by the Queen to use a state poverty fund to heat Buckingham Palace – and which had threatened to force the disclosure of the Prince of Wales’s prolific correspondence with ministers.

Lobbying and correspondence from junior staff working for the Royal Household and Prince Charles will now be held back from disclosure. Buckingham Palace confirmed that it had consulted with the Coalition Government over the change in the law. The Government buried the plan for “added protection” for the Royal Family in the small print of plans called “opening up public bodies to public scrutiny”.

Maurice Frankel, head of the Campaign for Freedom of Information, said that since the change referred to communications written on behalf of the Queen and Prince Charles it might be possible for “park keepers working in the royal parks” to be spared public scrutiny of their letters written to local authorities.

The decision to push through the changes also raises questions about the sincerity of the Liberal Democrats’ commitment to government transparency. In opposition, senior Liberal Democrats frequently lined up to champion the Freedom of Information Act after it came into force in 2005.

Ian Davidson, a former member of Parliament’s Public Accounts Committee (PAC), told The Independent: “I’m astonished that the Government should find time to seek to cover up royal finances. When I was on the PAC what we wanted was more disclosure not less.

“Every time we examined royal finances we found extravagance and indulgence as well as abuse of expenses by junior royals.

“Everywhere we looked, there were savings to be made for the Government. This sends the wrong message about public disclosure and accountability.”

Paul Flynn, another member of the committee, described the special protection for the Royals as “indefensible”. He said: “I don’t think it serves the interests of the public or the Royal Family very well.”

Mr Frankel said he believed that Prince Charles was the driving force behind the new law.

“The heir to the throne has written letters to government departments in an attempt to influence policy,” he said.

“He clearly does not want these to get into the public domain.”

Read the rest of this disgusting story here.

— By Akira The Don on Tuesday, January 11th, 2011

By Akira The Don on Tuesday, December 14th, 2010

Who’s idea was it to get this foul smug prick to harangue Jody McIntyre on national television?!

“There was a suggestion you were rolling towards the police, is that true?”


Man, this guy needs dropping down a well.

Shout out Jody McIntyre, who remains calm and eloquent throughout, which is probably a lot more than I’d have been able to do in the circumstances.

“Do you really think a person with cerebral palsy in a wheelchair can pose a threat to a police officer with weapons? Do you think I could have in any way posed a physical threat from the seat of my wheelchair to an army of police officers armed with weapons? This whole line of argument is absolutely  ridiculous because you’re blaming the victims of violence for that violence. In fact it reminds me a lot of the way the BBC report on the Palestinian conflict…”


If you wish to complain to the BBC about this vile spectacle, you can do so here. I rang them earlier, and my girl just wrote them the following:

Ben Brown’s interview with Jody McIntyre was a disgrace to the BBC. You call that journalism?

I am saddened, angered and disgusted by Ben Brown’s interview with Jody McIntyre last night. The arrogance and bias of his questions was a disgrace to the BBC.

He made it his job to try to discredit a clearly VERY intelligent man, and all other violence against protesters by police.

I am pleased that Jody was as determined as he was and stood up for himself against this bully.

Ben Brown should not be allowed to continue working at the BBC.

— By Akira The Don on Tuesday, December 14th, 2010

Tuesday, August 24th, 2010

When I’m putting together packages  to send to the fine customers of Akira The Don’s Little Shop of Awesome, oftentimes I’ll rummage in the middle drawer of my scrappy little old Ikea chest of drawers and see if there’s something extra I can put in, like a doodle or a setlist or a lyric sheet. Famous Los Angelino JJ Fabulous ended up with the lyric sheet for Sky, spilling misstakes and all, and she writes:

I framed my beautiful lyrics sheet! We’re breakin’ it in by using it as a surface to break on weed before I hang it. Yeah! It’s awsome! Here’s a picture.

Which is nice. Reminds me of a great picture of Raekwon I saw once.

Good ole Rae.

So, I was stood on my doorstep earlier, not stinking out the house, and it struck me: where the fuck is Gremlins 3? I mean, it just doesn’t make any sense. The original Gremlins was genuinely scary black comedy classic, and the hilarious Gremlins 2 – The New Batch opened the thing wide for unlimited sequel and merchandising opportunities.

That’s from the Gameboy game, for example. Anyway. 1990’s aforementioned Gremlins 2 was awesome and hugely popular, yet since then there has been nothing. Well, nothing except for this BT advert:

The internets says Gremlins 3 is happeningin 3D, natch…  but series director Joe Dante isn’t having anything to do with it.  “They did that once, they won’t do it again,” Dante told Bloody Disgusting, laughing. “They made that mistake once. Its a moot point, they won’t be coming to me. I can tell you that for a fact.

When asked to elaborate, Dante only grinned, saying, “I don’t have to. See Looney Tunes: Back in Action and I think that will explain it. That was not a pleasant experience.

Still, Dante believes GREMLINS 3 will happen one of these days, whether he’s involved or not. “I find it hard to believe that they won’t make a GREMLINS 3 because they’re remaking ADVENTURES IN BABYSITTING. I mean, they’re gonna remake everything.”

Not that that need necessarily be a bad thing. Pacino’s Scarface was a remake, after all. Even Bill Murray’s been talking about doing Ghostbusters 3. “I was down in Austin at South by Southwest,” he told GQ. “I got into it one night with a bunch of younger people who were like, Oh, I love Peter Venkman! I grew up with Peter Venkman! We got to talking, and the more we talked about it, the more I thought, Oh Christ, I should just do this thing.”

Praise Jah, huh? One of the iller ideas as to how to approach the movie involves Venkman being dead, and thus a ghost.

“Well, I hadn’t wanted to do the movie,” Murray told GQ. “They kept asking, and I kept saying no. So once upon a time I said, just joking: “If you kill me off in the first reel, then fine, I’ll do it.” And then supposedly they came up with an idea where they kill me off and I was a ghost in the movie. Kinda clever, really.”

See, Ghostbusters wasn’t just two great movies, it was a brilliant animated series and accompanying Ladybird book line. The first magazine I remember making was a Real Ghostbusters how to guide, in which I showed the reader how to make action figures out of OXO Cube boxes and glue. It had staples in it and everything, when I was 7 or something, as it goes. I’ve still got that somewhere, I should dig it out.


Ah, here it is!

The Real Ghostbusters Book Of Things To Make Out Of Bits And Pieces

Back in the day, if you wanted an expanse of black in a picture, you had to use a whole felt pen up scribbling. Man, if you’d told me back then they were gonna invent Photoshop I might have combusted or something. You can click on that and read the whole thing if you like. It plays you a song when you make it fullscreen. I like it. What do you think of that magazine player anyway? I’m thinking of doing a fanzine with it.


While I was looking for that, I also found this picture I did of some GREMLINS when I was 9. I think I did most of it on a train. Notice the similarity to my Street Fighter sleeve.

Meanwhile back in 2010, I am recording ATD25. LITF!

— Tuesday, August 24th, 2010

By Akira The Don on Friday, August 6th, 2010

“Great Things Come In Bears”?! You kidding me? Man, Boo Boo looks a little too happy for a kid that’s getting Effed In The A. There’s perfect metaphor for Hollyweood in there, just around the root of his furry little anus.

Via Bleeding Cool.

— By Akira The Don on Friday, August 6th, 2010

Saturday, July 3rd, 2010

— Saturday, July 3rd, 2010

By Akira The Don on Wednesday, June 9th, 2010

The following is a latter printed in today’s Guardian, highlighted by The New Statseman.

Let me just make sure I’ve got this right. First of all, a bunch of bankers lose unimaginable amounts of our money by making bets on a bunch of dodgy mortgages. Eventually the banks realise the bets are based on worthless assets, and that technically they are bankrupt.

The government bails them out with billions of pounds, transferring the debt to the public sector. The bankers, full of gratitude, pay themselves multimillion-pound bonuses which they invest in such a way as to pay as little tax as possible.

We express our anger by voting out the government and replacing it with a new one, which promptly blames the debt on the profligate spending of its predecessor, and tells us that the only solution is to cut public services. Civil servants lose their jobs, unemployment rises, libraries are closed, support services for the very poor, the dispossessed and the desperate disappear. Those who caused this mess in the first place get away with it, and are probably already planning the next disaster.

Are we really that gullible?

Matt Nicholson



— By Akira The Don on Wednesday, June 9th, 2010