Trump Brexit

Brexit and the election of Donald Trump have a lot in common. They came straight after each other and people voted for the same thing. They wanted their country back.

To be more accurate, they wanted to “feel” as if they had their country back. I can’t speak for America but in Britain, Brexiteers may now feel like they’re going to get back control of the UK but so far nothing about Brexit has been good and a year and a half after the referendum, we’re still a long way from leaving the E.U..

A lot of people voted for Brexit because they thought foreigners were taking British jobs. It might have “felt” that way but it wasn’t true. At a time of record immigration, we also had the lowest unemployment figures in decades so foreigners were not taking British jobs.

This week, it was announced that the European Banking Authority and the European Medicines Agency are moving from London to mainland Europe with the loss of around a thousand jobs. So the irony is that now, because of Brexit, foreigners ARE going to be taking British jobs.

If you think Brexit is a good idea, you haven’t done the maths. The Prime Minister, Theresa May is right now ready to offer £40 billion to the E.U. as payment for letting us get out.

During the referendum campaign, Pro-leave politicians including Boris Johnson were pictured in front of a big red bus that said, “We send the EU £350 million a week, let’s fund our NHS instead”. Well it looks like we’re going to have to pay them a lot more than that, in the short term anyway.

Assuming the EU accept our offer of £40 billion and we managed to break that down to say, £350 million a week (on top of the supposed £350 million we’re paying every week), it would take more than two years to pay off the full amount. I’m sorry but how exactly does that give us our country back?

The big difference between the election of President Trump and the vote for Brexit is that if things don’t work out with Donald, America can vote him out in a few years time but we’re stuck with Brexit!

Craic on!

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Bike

Bad news if you’ve ever fancied riding a bike naked through Britain. The British government has announced it wants to put driverless cars on our roads by 2021.

About 100 cyclists are killed on the roads in Great Britain every year and more than 3,000 are seriously injured. When all cars are driverless, no cyclists will be killed or injured on our roads, the technology won’t let a driverless car collided with a pushbike.

But no cycling organisation has ever campaigned for driverless cars even though it’s the only way to make cycling on the road safe. They’ve been busy campaigning for cycle paths and for drivers to be more aware of cyclists and they’ve organized naked bike rides where hundreds of people of all shapes, sizes and ages take off their clothes and ride around as a protest against how vulnerable they are.

If they’d put as much effort into campaigning for driverless cars over the last twenty years instead, we might have driverless cars by now and more cyclist would be alive.

If we had non-polluting, solar powered, driverless cars, why would anyone even ride a bike?

That would be great because there’d be no more naked bike rides and we wouldn’t have to see all those nipples, racks, cogs and other parts that make up bicycles or naked people’s saddles!

Craic on!

Listen to the latest Mack Nuggets at;

http://www.mackmedia.co.uk/8th-mack-nuggets-audio-video

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Savory Savoir

16Nov17

Greggs

If you say Jesus backwards, it sounds like “sausage” but that doesn’t mean you can depict the saviour as one in a nativity scene.

Greggs the Bakers have apologised after replacing baby Jesus with a sausage roll in a Nativity scene, to promote their advent calendar. A right wing pressure group called the Freedom Association isn’t happy. In a tweet, Simon Richards, who’s their chief executive, described the image as “sick”. He also said, “We all know that they would never dare insult other religions!”.

To me it all seems a bit strange for an organization called “The Freedom Association” to want to censor a business whose advertising campaign hasn’t broken any laws or rules of advertising standards. If you’re offended by what Greggs did, you’re free to not spend any of your money there, that’s freedom!

I agree with Simon Richards when he says, “We all know that they would never dare insult other religions!”. But isn’t that a good thing? Doesn’t it show that most Christians have a sense of humour and wouldn’t attack Greggs shops, like some radical factions of other faiths might?

I really don’t see what all the fuss is about. A lot of Christians are told that the communion wafer literally IS the flesh of Christ, if he can be a wafer, why can’t he be a sausage roll?

Craic on!

Listen to the latest Mack Nuggets at;

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OZ

Beware of the tolerance paradox!

Australians have voted to legalise same sex marriage. In a national survey, 61.6% of voters voted yes to a change in the law, 38.4% were opposed.

Almost 40% of those who voted were against a change in the law. This morning I watched an interview on Sky News with lady who had campaigned against gay marriage. She said she was opposed because she was a Christian.

The bible is homophobic, Leviticus 20:13 says, “If a man lies with a male as with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination; they shall surely be put to death; their blood is upon them”.

Not many modern Christians want to put gay people to death, so they’ve taken a more secular view on homosexuality for a while now. In fact they’ve taken a more secular view on a lot of things in the bible. For instance, Numbers 15:32-36 in the King James Version is pretty strict when it comes to the penalty for Violating the Sabbath, “Now while the children of Israel were in the wilderness, they found a man gathering sticks on the Sabbath day. And those who found him gathering sticks brought him to Moses and Aaron, and to all the congregation. They put him under guard, because it had not been explained what should be done to him. Then the Lord said to Moses, “The man must surely be put to death; all the congregation shall stone him with stones outside the camp.” So, as the Lord commanded Moses, all the congregation brought him outside the camp and stoned him with stones, and he died”. I don’t know any Christians that are in favour of the death penalty for not observing the Sabbath.

The thing I didn’t understand during the Sky News interview with the Christian lady was how she said that allowing gay people to marry restricted her religious freedom.

That brings us to the tolerance paradox. That’s when tolerance of a religious dogma restricts other people’s freedom. A ban on gay marriage restricts the freedom of gay couples. It prevents them from enjoying the benefits in law that come with a marriage license. These are things that can safeguard their families and protect them. Some of the protections of marriage which are denied to gay couples who are not allowed to marry included: hospital visitations, child custody, adoption, parenting rights, medical decision-making power, automatic inheritance, divorce protections, spousal and child support, access to family insurance policies, exemption from property tax on death of a spouse, domestic violence protections, and more. How exactly are Christians rights and freedoms affected if gay people are allowed to marry? In our secular society you are free to believe in and worship any god you like. That freedom exists because we have secular, not religious values and your freedom to follow a faith and worship is not affected at all by the right of couple to get married if that’s what they want to do.

What really would affect the freedom of all of us would be if we were all forced to conform to rules set down in a book that was written thousands of years ago by people who thought the world was flat and didn’t know where the sun went at night.

Especially if you planned on gathering some sticks on Sunday!

Craic on!

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UBI

Politicians want to control you and take away your freedom. In some places they’re taking that to the extreme, you know, places like North Korea.

But it’s happening in Europe too. In Helsinki Finland, they’re experimenting with a thing called “Universal Basic Income”, (UBI). It will be enough to live on, much higher than a pension or unemployment benefit and everyone gets the same government handout. It won’t be means tested, the disabled will get the same as able-bodied, pensioners will get the same as young people who are working.

The difference between adults and children is that adults are not dependent on their parents. UBI turns everyone into dependent children and makes the government your parent. The government is a group of politicians. Politicians are driven by a hunger for power. The ones that make it to the top are the ones that are the hungriest for that power. The way they satisfy that appetite for power is through control.

When the government controls your income, they have total control over you. If you don’t conform, they can threaten to cut you off. If your employer treats you like a child, you have the freedom to quit and work for someone else. Who would want their income to be dependent on a controlling parent?

Under the system of UBI, you can work as well and earn money on top, without losing your government handout. What kind of workforce will that produce? One of the things that motivates employees is the fear of losing their job and therefore their only source of income.

Finland is just the start. Fife Council in Scotland is planning its own basic income trial. They want to apply it to an entire town, giving up to £7,000 to everyone – no matter their age or employment status.

The way you know that Universal Basic Income is a bad idea is that it’s attracted praise from the political left AND right. When does that ever happen? You see both sides can see how much power it would give them through total control of an electorate and how easy it would be to win an election just by promising to raise the level of UBI. They already know how to buy votes from the people who always turn out to vote, pensioners. That’s why they get free TV licences, a heating allowances – even if they live in Spain and a triple lock on their pensions that guarantees they get an increase every year by a minimum of either 2.5% or the rate of inflation or average earnings growth, whichever is largest.

Governments have a duty of care and must look after the most vulnerable in our society. That’s what state handouts are for. If you give handouts to everyone, we all become the most vulnerable.

If you think UBI is a good idea, then you’re either hopelessly utopian, naïve or a politician. It’s the biggest risk to our freedom since the threat of Nazi occupation.

Craic on!

Listen to the latest Mack Nuggets at;

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London Calling

07Nov17

Alexander O'neal

In my latest show for America, the soul singer, Alexander O’Neal talks about addiction, getting fired by Prince and his new British tour.

As well as Alexander, there’s a look at what’s happening in Britain, including – Why is Richard Branson putting money into Elon Musk‘s Hyperloop?; Sleep walking and talking; The perfect metaphor for Brexit; Gadgets you don’t use; Why it now costs $30 to drive into London; Reasons for getting dumped and people who cheat to break the land speed record.

Listen to Episode 51 of London Calling With Graham Mack, here;
http://www.talkers.com/talkersradio/london-calling/london-calling-with-graham-mack-episode-51-soul-singer-alexander-oneal/

Craic on!

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Firework Dismay

02Nov17

Fireworks

Why is it legal to buy explosives in Britain?

On November 5th, we celebrate “Bonfire Night”. Every year, around 1,000 people visit hospitals for treatment of firework-related injuries. Half of the injuries are to under-18s. Since 1996, four people have been killed in firework accidents in the UK.

I lived in Australia for almost seven years. Where we lived in New South Wales, the sale of fireworks to the public is illegal.

The best fireworks I’ve ever seen were in Sydney Harbour on New Year’s Eve. There’s no way any of the more than a million people that watch them every year could put on anything like that kind of display in their own back yard even if they were allowed to buy fireworks in New South Wales.

As with most things, Australia is way ahead of Britain on this one. Controlling the sale of fireworks reduces the number of injuries. Britain does have one advantage over Australia that could reduce the number of casualties. The time when Australians are most likely to set off fireworks is on New Year’s Eve which is in the summer, in Britain November 5th is in the winter.  Let’s hope it rains again this year.

Craic on!

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Budget Airlines

31Oct17

Flights on the cheap

Are airlines cutting too many corners to save money?

If someone in my car hasn’t fastened their seatbelt, a light comes on and beeping starts that doesn’t stop until everyone is belted up.

On the plane back from Iceland recently, I noticed that planes don’t have that light and beeper. Just before you take off, the flight attendants have to walk down the aisle and check out everybody’s crotch. That’s the system on every flight I’ve ever been on, why is that?

The technology used on plane these days is incredible. They’re fly-by-wire, computer controlled, glass cockpits, technological wonders. They can land in thick fog but they can’t tell if everyone’s seatbelt is fastened?

Do Boeing and Airbus not have the seatbelt light and beeper as a factory option? Or is that only available in the Ghia model and all of the planes I’ve been on are the bog standard version?

That would explain why the masks that drop down in the unlikely event of depressurization look so cheap. I’ve often wondered why the only thing standing between me and certain death is a plastic cup, a freezer bag and a bit of knicker elastic.

Craic on!

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Mack Nuggets

28Oct17

Here’s some of the stuff I’ve been doing on BOBfm Lately, including:
Carl’s waste of money gadget.
The truth about the T-Charge.
If you’re an adult and still live at home with your mum, you’re a loser.
Would you pay more council tax to get more police on the streets?
The relationship deal breaker.

Craic on!

Listen to the latest Mack Nuggets at;

http://www.mackmedia.co.uk/8th-mack-nuggets-audio-video

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Bloodhound Gang

27Oct17

Bloodhound

The land speed record annoys me. The people who break the record, cheat by using a plane instead of a car.

“Bloodhound” made its first public runs this week. It’s driven by Royal Air Force Wing Commander Andy Green. It’s powered by a jet engine from the Eurofighter-Typhoon. The wheels for the test runs are refurbished landing gear from a Lightning jet fighter and the design for its fuselage and tail also look like a jet fighter.

That’s right, it’s got the fuselage of a plane, the tail of a plane, the engine from a plane, the wheels of a plane, the cockpit of a plane and is driven by the pilot of a plane. Come on, the only thing it hasn’t got, is wings!

The only reason it hasn’t got wings is so it doesn’t take off, BECAUSE IT’S A PLANE!

Craic on!

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T’d Off

25Oct17

Low Emissions Zone

Politicians LOVE pollution and they’ve got really good at turning it into revenue. They’re called “green” taxes even though the money they raise isn’t spent on making the environment any cleaner.

If you drive into the centre of London you have to pay a “congestion charge” of £11.50 a day. All vehicles that put out more than 75 grams of CO2 per kilometre have to pay up. 75g/km isn’t much, I drive a hybrid, the smallest in the Lexus range and it puts out 82g/km, so I have to pay.

Now, on top of the congestion charge, if you drive one of the most polluting vehicles, mainly diesel and petrol vehicles registered before 2006, you have to pay another £10 on top of that, so a total of £21.50 a day just to drive into London. It’s call the T-charge. The T stands for “toxicity”.

Green taxes are great because it means politicians can make you feel guilty. If you object to paying, you can be labeled as a bad person who doesn’t care about the environment. Pollution isn’t your fault it’s caused by the politicians who failed to regulate things, pre- 2006 vehicles for example. Back then, we didn’t know how bad they were for the environment, in fact the last Labour government encouraged us to buy diesels because they told us they were BETTER for the environment!

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, says the aim of the T-charge is to reduce the number of premature deaths from long-term exposure to air pollution. Really? So it’s not about making money?

If the Mayor of London wants a cleaner environment, why doesn’t he just bring in legislation to ban London buses and taxis that are dirty diesels? Imagine the impact on the environment in London if all of the diesel burning busses and taxis were replaced with zero emissions vehicles?

The Greater London Council, which Sadiq Khan is ultimately in charge of, is responsible for hundreds of vehicles, everything from street sweepers to the limousines used by the ceremonial mayors of each London borough. There is currently no plan to replace them with zero emission vehicles. There’s not even a target date for when they will have to comply with the new T-charge rules. Instead, all of these vehicles are exempt from the new charge.

The T-charge is all about making money. If you want to know what politicians are really up to, follow the money. If you want to know when they’re lying, check to see if their lips are moving.

And what comes out of politician’s mouths, that’s the most toxic pollution of all.

Craic on!

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London Calling

24Oct17

London Calling

In the latest episode of my show for America;

Britain’s killer eggs are now safe.
The truth about politicians.
A London double decker bus driver blows kisses.
Why Britain is in trouble;
Stranded stories.
Is working in an office real work?
An electrocution misconception.
Brexit is a mess.
Crimes of fashion.
Why do car key fobs cost so much and take so long to be replaced?

Listen to London Calling Episode 50 here;
http://www.talkers.com/talkersradio/london-calling/london-calling-with-graham-

mack-episode-50/

Craic on!

Listen to the latest Mack Nuggets at;

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Train In Vain

14Oct17

Richard

“In business, if you realize you’ve made a bad decision, you change it”.

That’s a quote from Richard Branson. This week he announced that his Virgin Group has invested in Hyperloop One. They’re a company that wants to bring Elon Musk’s magnetically-propelled high-speed transport system to life.

A hyperloop is a pod that travels through a sealed tube at up to 760 miles per hour. According to Hyperloop One’s website, you’d be able to travel from London to Edinburgh in 41 minutes. Right now, one of Richard Branson’s Virgin trains from London Euston to Edinburgh Waverley takes four and a half hours.

Britain’s roads are clogged, our trains are overcrowded and our airspace is full. If a hyperloop system could be made to work, it would change public transport forever.

Unfortunately the British government is already committed to a thing called HS2, which is a new high speed train line. This is a taxpayer funded project that has already cost a billion pounds and the government estimates, that HS2 would cost another £56 billion to build. Phase one will only cut around half an hour off the time it takes to get from London to Birmingham and will still take 49 minutes. A hyperloop system could have you in Edinburg in that time.

Henry Ford changed the world. He gave ordinary people the chance to own a car. He is supposed to have said, “If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses.” There’s no evidence to prove that he ever said that but the point is, he changed the world by giving us something completely different. He didn’t just take something we already had and make it a bit better.

HS2 is just a faster version of a transport system that hasn’t been cutting edge technology since Victorian times.

When Steve Jobs gave the world the first smart phone he supposedly didn’t do any market research. He didn’t make mobile phones better, he created a gadget that’s now so important, most of us can’t imagine life without one.

British taxpayers have invested a billion pounds in HS2 so far. If it’s such a great idea, why is the bloke behind the company that operates long-distance passenger trains in Britain, investing in a different system?

Maybe the British government should realise they’ve made a bad decision with HS2 and change it.

Craic on!

Listen to the latest Mack Nuggets at;

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London Calling

12Oct17

Tony Prince

In the latest episode of my show for America; Tony Prince talks about getting his first break in TV, jamming with Jimi Hendrix, broadcasting throughout Europe on Radio Luxembourg, his book and the film he’s working on.

As well as that – Joe checks in from Chicago for a special birthday dedication; Back seat driving from Boris Johnson; Public disgrace on public transport; Why is nobody calling their baby Nigel?; Lisa gets her finger stuck in someone’s ring; Magic politicians; Bad food Britain surprises Americans; Saudi women get to drive, but where to?

Listen to London Calling Episode 49 here;
http://www.talkers.com/talkersradio/london-calling/london-calling-with-graham-mack-episode-49-tony-prince-part-2/

Craic on!

Listen to the latest Mack Nuggets at;

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Jimmy

Is working in an office REAL work?

I had this thought while I was watching the latest season of “Better Call Saul”.

Bob Odenkirk’s character, Jimmy, is ordered to do community service. The work he’s given is to pick up litter under a highway overpass. I realised that for some people, that kind of work isn’t punishment, it’s their job and they’re glad to have it.

When you think about what people are forced to do as community service, it’s always physical labour, like litter picking, cleaning off graffiti or gardening. No one is ever forced to do office work.

When I was an air conditioning engineer in Australia, I remember getting Paul the apprentice to clean out a cooling tower. It was horrible work but it was the day after that he was grumpy about it. I asked him why and he said he’d had an argument with his girlfriend. After a day stuck inside a cooling tower with a wire brush, he got home and she was complaining about what a terrible day she’d had at work. She’d been forced to spend the afternoon photocopying.

He had a point, no one’s ever forced to do photocopying as part of their community service and the same goes for filing, answering the phone, data entry or sitting in a meeting drinking tea and eating biscuits.

So, unless what you do for a living is given to people as a punishment, is it real work?

Craic on!

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GB

Who would want to visit Britain right now?

Britain’s fifth biggest airline, Monarch, has gone bust. Around a hundred and ten thousand customers are stranded overseas.

Meanwhile, London Underground train drivers are going on strike and train drivers all over the country are striking this week as well.

Let’s look at how bad things are in the UK right now.

We’ve got Strikes, a major airline has gone bust and according to MI5 the current threat level for international terrorism in the UK right now is SEVERE.

All of this is going to affect the number of tourists that come here. Maybe we need a rebrand. We could sell Britain as a theme country.

And the theme is the 1970s!

Craic on!

Listen to the latest Mack Nuggets at;

http://www.mackmedia.co.uk/8th-mack-nuggets-audio-video

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Vegas

“The Vegas shooter killed more people in FIFTEEN MINUTES than were killed by guns IN TOTAL in the UK in the last TWO YEARS”.  – That’s what the British adventurer, Graham Hughes tweeted after the latest US gun attack.

When is the United States going to sort out its gun laws?

The scale of this latest tragedy is beyond shocking. The pain of the families and members of the community is unimaginable. Stephen Paddock opened fire from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Hotel towards an open-air music festival on Sunday night.

America needs better gun control laws but still there are a lot of people in the USA that see gun control as an attack on their freedom.

The problem is the interpretation of the Second Amendment to the US Constitution and specifically the phrase “…the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed”.

On the face of it, it looks like all American citizens have the right to carry a gun for personal protection, but you have to look at the context.

The quote, “…the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed” is only the second half of the sentence. The full sentence is “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a Free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed”. You’ve got to look at that phrase, “A well regulated Militia”.

The Second Amendment was adopted on December 15, 1791. It was a different time, under different circumstances, with very different weapons. Success in the Revolutionary War had helped America’s Founding Fathers understand the need for firearms. A far-away government imposed taxes without representation. Armed citizens had fought for the right to form their own government. It is more than likely that they wanted guns to be available in case they needed to do that again. As well as that, America was still expanding. There were territorial disputes with the native people.

The most hi-tech weapon of the day was the musket. Someone who knew what they were doing could take a single wildly inaccurate shot and then rummage around with a ramrod and a powder bag for over a minute before being able to shoot again. The only way multiple shots could be fired would be with multiple muskets, and multiple well disciplined shooters, in other words a “well regulated Militia”. Muskets WERE used for personal protection but when people did die from these weapons, it was often because of lead poisoning or infection.

The Second Amendment is out of date. There’s no way America’s Founding Fathers could have imagined the weapon technology of today. The “arms” referred to in the Second Amendment are Revolutionary War-era muskets.

They have tried to bring things up to date. In 1994 a law banning assault weapons for ten years was passed by Congress. That law expired in 2004 at the end of the George W. Bush administration.

Would tougher gun laws have prevented Stephen Paddock from killing at least 59 people and injuring another 527 at a Las Vegas concert? We’ll never know, but what we do know is that the weapons he used were military-style automatic rifles. Would he have been allowed to own those guns if the 1994 law had not been allowed to expire?

Machine guns are legal in Nevada. You are allowed to carry weapons and do not have to register as a gun-owner. Background checks are done when people buy guns, but they are also allowed to sell them privately.

In Donald Trump’s speech after this, the worst mass shooting in American history, he said nothing about gun reform. He offered the shooting victims his condolences and spiritual guidance; and called for national unity.

“Thoughts and prayers” won’t stop this happening again, gun control might.

Craic on!

Listen to the latest Mack Nuggets at;

http://www.mackmedia.co.uk/8th-mack-nuggets-audio-video

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Mack Nuggets

29Sep17

Here’s what I’ve been up to on BOBfm Lately, including;

Houseguests from Hell.
How do you pay tribute to Hef?
Stuff you’ve done at work to make things more interesting.
Unusual places to be chatted up.
Nigel is an endangered species.
Public transport nightmares.
A special birthday song.
Lisa gets her finger stuck in someone’s ring.
BOBfm taken off the air by a swarm of angry wasps.

 

Craic on!

Listen to the latest Mack Nuggets at;

http://www.mackmedia.co.uk/8th-mack-nuggets-audio-video

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Top Sharia

27Sep17

 

Saudi drive

By June next year, women will no longer be forbidden from getting behind the wheel of a car in Saudi Arabia, but where are they going to drive to?

They could drive to a clothes shop, but getting the right size will be difficult because women are not allowed to try on clothes in changing rooms. They’re not allowed to “dress for beauty” anyway.

Driving to a restaurant will be a waste of time, because women are not allowed to eat freely in public.

There’s no point driving to a newsagents, because women are not allowed to read uncensored fashion magazines.

Driving to a bank is pointless as well, because Saudi women are not allowed to open a bank account without their husband’s permission. In fact women are not allowed to travel at all without the permission of a male guardian.

Giving a woman in Saudi Arabia the right to drive without giving her other basic rights is like giving a fish a bicycle.

Craic on!

Listen to the latest Mack Nuggets at;

http://www.mackmedia.co.uk/8th-mack-nuggets-audio-video

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London Calling

19Sep17

London

In the latest episode of my show for America;

Storm Aileen hits Britain.
Do you brush your teeth in the shower?
Speed cameras.
Where will the next royal baby be born?
Houseguests from hell.
Do public holidays cause panda pregnancies in Scotland?
A phone scam.
Confusion over the new iPhones.
Offensive candy.
A conversation about astrophysics and religion with Jim from Philadelphia.

Listen to London Calling – Episode 49, here;
http://www.talkers.com/talkersradio/london-calling/london-calling-with-graham-mack-episode-48/

Craic on!

Listen to the latest Mack Nuggets at;

http://www.mackmedia.co.uk/8th-mack-nuggets-audio-video

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