I’m backing Team DGB

I’ve spent the last two weeks trying to avoid the Olympics and the obligatory Great British cheerleading. To no avail. No matter how thick the duvet cover you pull over your heid you’re still going to be assailed by Clare Balding gushing over some person, whose name you’ll forget within five minutes, who managed to win a lump of base metal on a ribbon for a dancing horse, falling into water gracefully, hitting things with sticks, or covering 26 miles in just over two hours.

A significant percentage of the population of Fife have managed to cover 26 miles in just over two hours but never got a medal for it, when they were unwitting passengers on Wullie Rennie’s number 17 bus to Kelty. You’d think that all of Scotland deserves a medal for putting up with Wullie Rennie, but I’ve yet to see Clare Balding effuse over the forebearance of the Scottish people for putting up with the crap doled out to us on a regular basis by Unionist politicians and the broadcaster that employs Clare Balding.

Anyway, now that the Olympics are over the deep wounds of the Brexit vote have been healed and Scotland is grateful to be a part of this glorious Union, because, you know, dancing horses, falling into water, and hitting things with sticks. Be happy and grateful peasants. You might be staring into a dark void of poverty without a pension while Philip Green sails off into the sunset on his latest luxury yacht, you might have all the job security of a hamburger salesman at a vegan conference, you might be struggling with benefits sanctions because you were a couple of minutes late for your jobcentre appointment, but you can rejoice because Tom Dailey fell off a high diving board in an artistically pleasing manner.

The games allegedly demonstrated what a great country this is, because Britain prioritises getting base medal tokens for a handful of elite athletes in sports no one plays over dealing with a childhood obesity epidemic while it presides over the mass closure of school playing fields and selling them off to developers who go and build kebab shops on them. What they really demonstrate is that the UK always puts the needs of the elite over the needs of the many.

Team GB’s much vaunted success at running, jumping and hitting things with sticks comes because vast amounts of lottery cash have been thrown at a handful of top performers. That’s the lottery cash we were told was going to go to good causes. Well now you know that a good cause isn’t ensuring that all children have access to sporting facilities, it’s not even about providing a better bus service to Kelty so that kids can get to sporting facilities, a good cause is paying a tiny number of top performing sportspersons in sports that few have the opportunity to participate in so that once every four years our Westminster masters and the BBC can have a red white and blue themed nationalistic sportagasm. Oh sorry, it’s British isn’t it. So it’s not nationalistic, it’s patriotic. So that’s alright then.

Despite managing to miss most of the Olympics, I’ve come back just in time to witness that other regular red white and blue themed nationalistic sportagasm which is the annual release of the GERS figures, the government expenses and revenues figures for Scotland. Unlike the Olympics, where Team GB doesn’t always get to win and sometimes its a foreign dancing horse that goes home with a medal, Team GB always gets to win the GERS games because that’s what they were designed for. As infallibly as Jackie Baillie’s calculations on a back of a fag packet, the GERS figures prove that Scotland couldn’t possibly manage to survive without Team GB kindly managing our money for us.

The point of GERS is very much like the point of Clare Balding in the Olympics. It’s to demonstrate the superiority of Britishness. Without of course being nationalist about it, because it’s only foreigners and Scottish people who are guilty of nationalism. It’s just patriotic. Every year the British government tosses the Unionist media a juicy bone in the shape of a set of figures about UK government spending on in or on behalf of Scotland which are based on estimates from the UK treasury and every year the Unionist media uses them to rubbish the case for independence.

It can’t be repeated often enough, because it never gets much airtime in the UK media, but if the GERS figures do indeed prove that Scotland is dependent upon a subsidy from the rest of the UK and is incapable of funding itself, then that can only be the fault of successive UK governments which have failed to develop the Scottish economy so it’s self-sustaining. If Scotland is indeed staring into a fiscal black hole that’s deeper than the dark void that passes for a soul in the Conservative party, then that’s the fault of Westminster. The supposed basketcasery of the Scottish economy is not an argument for continuing Westminster rule, it’s an argument for getting away from Westminster as fast as we possibly can.

Yet instead of Unionist politicians shamefacedly confessing to the economic ruin that their parties and their policies have wrought on this Scotland that they are always telling us they’re so proud of, they crow exultantly about the poverty and ruin that they’ve created like it was a good thing. They’re proud to be dependent, proud to beg, proud to be incapable. That’s not a form of pride most sensible people would recognise, but apparently it’s patriotic and not nationalist. It’s wrong and nationalist to desire to live in a country which can pay its own way and support itself. It’s also deeply wrong to want to live in a country where politicians don’t think that they can crow and rejoice when economic figures are released which allegedly show that they country that they govern is poorer than Greece and less economically viable than Malta.

As far as both the Olympics and GERS are concerned I support Team DGB – that’s Team Don’t Give a Bugger. I don’t care about the Olympics, and I don’t care about the GERS figures. The Olympics tell us as much about the general state of public health and happiness as the GERS figures tell us about the general state of the health of public finances in an independent Scotland. They tell us nothing at all.

Audio link to this blog post, courtesy of @lumi_1984 https://soundcloud.com/occamshaver/im-backing-team-dgb-24th-august-2016

[soundcloud url=”https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/279724285″ params=”color=ff5500&auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false” width=”100%” height=”166″ iframe=”true” /]


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0 thoughts on “I’m backing Team DGB

  1. Didn’t I read somewhere that the figures for GERS was made up by a Tory blogger who doesn’t have the first clue about economics?? Good article btw👍👍👍

  2. Dose anyone know how much each of these medals has cost the taxpayer, be it though direct taxation or that stealth, the national lottery? When independence comes can we have television with a dedicated sports channel and keep it off all other stations and especial the news?

    • The figure I have read is about four million pounds per medal. Just think what that could have done if some of it had been spent on encouraging and enabling mass participation is sport by the people of Scotland. We might live longer and actually collect the pensions we have paid for all these years. Or children might be given the chance to go to sports centres or take up other types of physical activity instead of a lot of them being ruled out by cost and non-availability.

      The poor are being duped by the “chance” of winning big money in the lottery. They are paying for middle and upper class participation in sport.

      I could weep, but I might just get angry instead and store it up for campaigning for independence.

  3. Pingback: I’m backing Team DGB | speymouth

  4. Sorry, Paul, but you are incorrect in thinking that Team GB Triumphalism is over. First we had minute-by-minute coverage of a gold-nosed aircraft (should have been brown-nosed) bringing the “heroes” home. (I wish journalists could use a dictionary to find out what a “hero” actually is). Next it’s the clamour for “gongs”, followed by open topped bus parades across this Great British “Empire”. Then it’ll be more speculation over “gongs” and much defending of the millions spent from people who earn their monies from those same millions. Oh wait, they’re already doing that.

    If I wasn’t so cynical I’d think that there was a hidden agenda to make us all Great “Brits” and forget our inconsiderate “separation” desires.

  5. I heard something on a radio station whilst travelling on the bus today. It went something like “Well, you know how the whole country got really involved with the Olympics…..” So glad to hear I’m not the only one who couldn’t give a toss about the whole jingoistic affair.

    • Welcome back Paul, hope you had a good holiday. Aye Weechild I’m with you and Paul in supporting TEAM DGB. Thank goodness that it’s over.

  6. Good to have you back, Paul.

    As always your use of language informs and entertains as you expose the damaging folly that is our ‘Better Together’ union. A rare and enjoyable experience.

    The British establishment is nauseatingly in full self-glorification mode. An ugly spectacle to bear, made even worse by the release of the GERS figures. A double whammy against Scottish independence aspirations, apparently.

    Never underestimate the power of denial.

    I am reminded of another country which threw large sums of money at athletes in the hope of reaping a large harvest of medals. All to convince the world of it’s greatness.

    Coincidentally, it also spent obscene amounts on WMDs for the same reason, while many of it’s citizens suffered financial hardship.

    Unlike the USSR however, we are blessed with the cost of the royal family too, regularly wheeled out in uniforms and medals, reminding us just how ‘Great’ Britain is.

    I doubt supporters of our toy town Ruritania will recognise the parallels, or appreciate the comparison, but the daily comic opera of union-jackery would be manna from heaven for Gilbert and Sullivan.

    Certainly, the design for the sports wear used by Team GB, with all that faux heraldry, would be familiar to them.

  7. Welcome home Paul! Back to your brilliant, cutting best immediately I notice! I have thanked the heavens above that I do not listen to the radio and neither do I possess a box in the corner that brain-washes the ‘masses’!!

    • No telly here either and my radio listening is limited to Radio 4 extra – old comedy and drama – no news or sport.

      • We’ve all joined the DGB team! A great team…… and not long before we become the winning team. The team which creates a fair society within Scotland.

        Hope you enjoyed your holiday, Paul. You’ve certainly returned in fine form!

  8. I have developed a way of simply not saying anything during the Olympics, because it only causes arguments. I’m glad to know I’m really not alone…

  9. Welcome home – you did have a most excellent substitute , though he is far more polite than you!

    As far as the lympics are concerned , I am looking forward to the medal table for” Most inane comment by presenters” – my money is on the two pillocks “advising” us what Andy Murray was thinking during the final, and how he was “struggling” and ” in trouble” – there again the swimming pool commentators are in wi’ a shout along with the diving commentators.

    • Aye I saw his mum Judy on the TV saying she had actually turned the sound off while watching his match as she didn’t really appreciate what the ‘commentators’ were saying about her boy!!!

  10. I hope you enjoyed your holiday.

    I’m sure the French and Germans would happily trade their car factories, steelworks, shipyards and coal mines for the number of “Team GB’s” medals.

    Oh and stand by for the Republic of Ireland asking to be let back into the UK because they didn’t win nearly as many medals as “us”.

  11. Team GB’s success in the last couple of Olympics is largely down to the careful spending of a lot of money. You may have seen comments in the media about the Westminster government proposing to adopt a similar idea with regards to actually having an industrial strategy? It’ll never happen though, and here’s why …

    Team GB is utterly ruthless about it’s funding choices, if your sport doesn’t produce results (i.e. medals!) and shows no realistic chance of producing those results then you will quickly find that you’ve got no funding! It’s a hard-nosed, but demonstrably successful strategy but can you imagine any government minister approving a cut in support to any particular industrial sector? Just think of the job losses, possibly in marginal seats!

    However perhaps it’s time that Scotland took a similarly hard-nosed strategy to the union? We’ve provided lots of funding over the years, and I think even the most generous assessment would conclude that Westminster has not really provided the sorts of results we desire!

  12. Your penultimate sentence says it all! Couldn’t agree more. As for the clamour for gongs, surely that metal they wear around their necks is their reward?

  13. I managed to avoid the Olympics entirely. I say ‘entirely’ with a note of caution.
    It meant that I have avoided BBC for 3 weeks ‘entirely’, which is no bad thing.
    Their output gets increasingly puerile, and numbingly dumbingly.
    I’ve never watched any of the soaps, and I still can’t tell you who killed ‘JR’. I cannot even tell you who ‘JR’ is.
    I’m the one in the pub quiz team who is not consulted on Girl Group/Boy Band questions, but towards whom everybody looks to come up with the currency of Latvia, or Samuel Clements pen name.
    As WoS predicted the Scottish hacks have gone Gaga on Scotland the Poor today.
    Self serving idiots who hope to boost their sales or viewing figures by lying about the country they live in, and into which many of them were born.
    They may labour under the misconception that if their Unionist lies reach us by word of mouth on the Ethernet, that we’ll all rush to their online ‘paper or broadcast and boost their flagging sales/viewing figures.
    Well, according to’ paper sales, and TV viewing figures, the vast majority of us didn’t watch the Olympics, and are not tuning in to Home Counties Comedies, BBC Dramas where the London Eye gets more airtime than the players, and we are buying fewer and fewer of the Dead Tree Scrolls.
    I noted in the vast flurry of Unionist Olympic guff that one reason that we Nats were critical of BBC’s coverage, was that, apparently, someone called ‘Clare Golding’ was the anchor, and that we somehow resented that she was ‘openly’ gay? The tortured argument appears to be that we Nats are covertly anti gay?
    I am relying on my short term memory of reported speech here, so beg to be contradicted.
    I’m trying to imagine describing myself as ‘openly straight’.
    Welcome back, WGD. Macart held the fort excellently, BTW, but don’t tell him that. You know us Scots and compliments.
    Next step on the Road to self Determination is the internecine destruction of the UK Labour Party in September.
    May I enrol in Team DGB?

    • Ditto re BBC programmes. I was at a pub quiz recently and there were two questions concerning so called reality shows. My reply was “I’m proud to say I don’t know the answers to these questions as I refuse to subscribe to and fund the BBC”. OK so I didn’t win the quiz but then I wouldn’t have anyway as the first page was all about sport and mainly the Olympics – I’d no chance.

        • PS: The unit of Latvian currency is the Euro, and Samuel Langhorne Clemens is of course Mark Twain. He took his nom de plume from his spell as a riverboat pilot, when he ‘marked twain’ as he measured the depth of water below the craft with a plumb line, or so I was led to believe a lifetime ago.
          You get a better class of post on WGD, don’t you think?

  14. Subsidised athletes don’t have to pay a penny back when they make millions in sponsorship and advertising. Unlike some poor uni students who are in debt up the wazoo for most of their working lives.

  15. Sorry to dissent, but I feel proud watching a Somalian refugee win two gold medals for outclassing the rest of the world for the second time. It’s not all bad…

    And I enjoyed the Olympics – just hate the jingoism.

  16. Slightly off topic, but to hell with it, if the Unionists can splurge the GERS lies all over the MSM, we can blanket cover the sinister Establishment MSM Unionist conspiracy against SNP BAD and our FM on as many social media sites as possible.
    I posted this on WoS, and , editor permitting here, c’n’p it here.

    “From this morning’s BBC News Where We are, all 2 1/2 minutes of it in total, on 3 1/4 hours BBC England’s hegemony fest over breakfast.

    “ An investigation by BBC Scotland has found that Labour exploitation is commonplace in the heart of the First Minister’s constituency and that exceptional levels of poverty are being made worse in Govanhill by overcrowding’
    Lucy Adams reports:
    Parts of Govanhill are ranked as the most deprived in the country. (shot of broken window)
    Figures obtained by the BBC show that a study of Local Roma people (shot of boarded up windows)most were working but more than a third were receiving less than the minimum wage.
    Local people said that they were happy to work for as little as £3 an hour.
    Many families are living in below tolerable conditions (shot of damp rotting skirting boards and plaster crumbling ceiling) with infections of cockroaches, rats, and bed bugs.( another shot of crumbling plaster and boarded up window, from the inside this time)
    Lawyers say exploitation of the migrants community is rife(shot of an abandoned tattered mattress, an old pushchair, and a big community wheelie bin ) and local agencies are working together to improve conditions’.
    128 words.
    This is apparently what BBC PQ describes as a ‘BBC investigation’. My arse.
    The message being, the FM’s constituency, slums, immigrants, sweat shop exploitation, slave wages, streets littered with mattresses, and stuff, are all ”commonplace in the heart of the FM’s constituency’. QED it is all her fault. SNP Bader than ever.
    What a pile of toe jam.
    Why bother BBC Outpost?
    I have seldom transcribed such a frankly childish poor written badly edited piece of junk.”

    No Fat Frank, whose penchant for pies and leering at 16 year old girls is well documented, was invited to explain why Labour controlled GDC has allowed this all to happen. They don’t do bulk uplifts in Govanhill? The 100’s of millions of my local tax dollars spent on Social Work doesn’t extend to Govanhill?
    Slum landlords are left unmonitored by GDC in the FM’s constituency?

    No Fluffy Grand Panjandrum of the Scottish Colony Mundell invited to explain why sweat shops and slave wages are allowed to thrive in Better Together Scotland?

    No Rachman landlords chased down the streets by our intrepid reporter armed only with her trusty mike?

    No, it’s all that Bad SNP’s fault, is it?
    What a corrupt little bunch of Unionist propagandists they have gathered at PQ.

    Roll on.

    • Yep saw that. Funny how they can do a doco on PFI though and fail to mention the Labour party even once!

      On the topic of GERS, what a joke but it is very frustrating as it does a job. It rams home in the minds of the nervous that we are ‘just not strong enough to stand on our own two feet’, I hear it all the time around my work. Still I think it is all getting rather dull now and so the impact is getting less. I also think I have noticed the Beeb have held back a wee bit this time, I can not help but think this is because Brexit shall undermine this unionist lovefest and it shall raise really ugly questions for the yoons. And what do the Beeb and others do when there are very awkward questions for the union side, they move you along, ‘come on, move along, nothing to see here’ is the mantra.

      • Ian,
        the Govanhill BBC investigation lasted all of 37 seconds on the News Where We Are at 6.57.
        It was preceded by a piece onFE Colleges restructuring, but I noticed that they inserted ‘part time’ when they mentioned the College Courses ( Rennie, Davidson, Mara, Two Jobs WATP Tomkins, inter alia, screeched the ‘ SNP scrapped 154,000 college places , you may remember.) when they mentioned courses that had been cut.
        The BBC are getting twitchy.

        ‘Every breath you take and every move you make
        Every bond you break, every step you take, I’ll be watching you
        Every single day and every word you say
        Every game you play, every night you stay, I’ll be watching you.’
        The Police. (how apt.)

        We must let the Unionists propagandists away with no more lies and baseless threats.
        I want every journalist, every TV presenter, every editor, to realise that from now until Independence, every breath every move, every broken bond, every step, every fart ,will be under intense scrutiny by millions of readers listeners and viewers.
        No more Mr Nice Guys.

        Spout shit and you’ll have it thrown back in your face.

        Bare knuckled defiance now rather than passive resignation. The gloves are off.

        • Jack, thanks for your run down on the latest propaganda from the establishment this morning. I don’t watch, listen, or read the M.S.M any more because I have to watch my blood pressure. Although I am told some of their fairy tales are quite amusing.
          And while I agree with your view on the lies spouted by the media, we, I’m sure, are all too aware that they aren’t going to cease, in fact they will intensify in the run up to the next Scottish Referendum.
          During canvassing I’ve been asked why the Scottish Government doesn’t do more to get the good news about Scotland out there, so that people can make an informed choice. But therein lies the difficulty. It’s O.K for people like me who read, online, the latest daily press releases from them, but if they ever actually are mentioned in the media, or more probably omitted entirely, then they are spun into an S.N.P Baad angle.
          Hopefully, by the time we are back on the streets promoting the next Yes campaign, if that is what it’s going to be called, even more of the electorate will have come to realise, through websites such as this, that an independent Scotland is the only way forward for our country, and its people.

          • It gets more sinister and 1984-esque, Alex.
            Apparently the Scottish Government introduced a new power under the Housing (Scotland) Act 2014, the Exchanged Enforcement Act which gave Glasgow Council the power to enforce landlords to adhere to H&S rules, and so on.
            Not only that, the Council in partnership with the Scottish Government set out on a scheme to buy to buy 579 flats from private landlords in 4 tenements in Govanhill because of the Rachman-like practices of theunscrupulous landlords.
            The Council put in £5 million, with a further £500,000 for repairs to homes outwith the three streets targeted, and .the SG contributed £4.3 million.
            This was in addition to the £20 million that the SNP had pumped into repairs to private flats in the Govanhill area from 2010 to 2015.
            The Council in partnership with the Govanhill Housing Association devised the South West Govanhill Property Acquisition and Repair Programme.
            Money there, Plan in place. Only that was last year.

            I gleaned this info from the BBC Website dated September 2015.

            Oh,dear. And not a mention of it on any of the TV and Radio bulletins, and abandoned mattresses and buggies still liter the pavements today in the heart of Nicola Sturgeon’s constituency.
            I tried to Google the up to date picture regarding this exciting refurbishment programme but it has all gone quiet over there.

            As I observed earlier, where is Frank Mac, leader of the Council ? Why wasn’t he dragged before the cameras today?
            Where are the legions of Social workers, DWP staff, Immigration officials, Job Seekers Agency, Minimum wage inspectors, while all this is going on?

            Why haven’t the Council cleared this debris from the pavements?

            I suspect that not a little of the answer lies in the fact that Glasgow Labour Tammany Hall is out to cause maximum embarrassment to our FM in her own back yard.
            The Repair and buy project must have stalled somewhere.
            I implore WGD and/or WoS to look into this, since I am too restricted, and lack the resources to follow this up.
            If it is true that there is a joint scheme and £9.8 million in funding, and a North West Property Acquisition and Repair Programme has been in position since the summer of 2015, what’s the delay, and why the fuck did the BBC News Where WE are deliberately withhold this information and twist today’s item into a NS/SNP BAD piece so blatantly? Maybe they are just crap journalist.
            WE really are living in darkening Big Brother Days.
            Shame on you Sally Magnusson and Co.if this is true.

  17. Ps. I’ve just read Herald Britland headlines this morning (I know, if I don’t stop picking at this scab, it will never heal.)
    Full on GERS Black Hole £15 billion guff, juxtaposed by a good news Sellick piece about £3 million CL bonus because the prize money is paid in euros which have jumped in value against the Brexit plummeting £. Whit?
    What a fecking little rag the Britland Thunderer has degenerated into.
    There, they’ve got me ending a sentence with a preposition now.
    Cat litter and recycled German toilet paper.

  18. Aye, well, limpit, sprot, great something-something or other, soma for the masses. There is a misunderstanding that the limpits and other sprot which appears in the meeja©macart, are there for the greater good. False. Heaven forbid. No. The last thing the meeja©macart want us to do is actually partake and participate in sprot because we would, then, not be stuck in front of the flickering thing on the wall or perusing the dead-tree-scrolls©collatin. It is just entertainment, like the Parthenon with its gladiators but without the lions and occasional Christian

    More people participate in fitba at the local level than attend league matches. If they want to find out how their local group is doing there will be a Facebook page. Many, many people head out for a ramble or hike in their spare time; ne’re a mention in the meeja©macart – but web sites and social media will have it covered. We have Scottish Coastal Rowing (and plenty of coast to row round) which is an amazing community self-build project. Is that covered in the news where you are? But it is well covered by web sites and social media. Though, with the Highland Games season swinging along, it shouldn’t long before that scrotum Witchell (HRH’s wrinkled retainer) appears over the horizon talking us through that most Scottish of sports, tossing for cabers.

    It wouldn’t be so bad if the meeja©macart contained some actual relevant news; not padding out the space and time with national fitba, cats up trees and which banal nonentity is bonking some other banal nonentity, but it doesn’t because, for the dead-tree-scrolls©collatin, it costs money and, for the broadcasters, there is no competitive imperative.

    So, the meeja©marcat is doomed. And it won’t really be missed.
    Hmmm. I notice this could just as easily be posted in WoS – convergent evolution in the blogosphere?

  19. I quite enjoyed a lot of the Olympics – maybe easy for me as a former runner and rugby player. However there was a distinctly creepy feeling that the Corinthian Spirit was being hijacked for some other, much less wholesome, purpose. So in this context, I recommend my solution for enjoying English football on the telly, including watching England: mute the commentary. The people who do the stuff are mostly OK, but the commentators should be in an institution.

    Oh, wait, they are.

  20. Spot-on, Paul. Welcome back to rain, grey skies and Willie Rennie.

    Macart (that youngster you had minding the shop) made a similar point In Another Place that if GERS shows our dreadful economic position, who has been in charge of the levers of economic power but WM, The Mother of Parliaments (discounting Iceland, of course)?

    I didn’t watch a single event of the Olympics and avoided the Britnat Frenzy it seems to have caused. They seem to me to be an obscenely overblown school sports which have been hijacked by nationalists and corporate interests at great cost to those who bought lottery tickets. The funds should have been channelled into food banks and social projects to offset the effects of Red Tory/Blue Tory Austerity.

    Does this make me a party pooper? Am I a vile cyber sep?

    Is there honey still for tea?

  21. Welcome back Paul. I really like the idea of listening to your blog but it would be so much better if you were reading it yourself. I know you probably don`t have the time but it would be great to hear you read your own excellent work.

  22. Could we have the version of DGB for the overly polite(like me)?
    CCL Could’t Care Less? or GTAH Go take a Hike.

  23. I asked for a book of 1st Class Stamps, two days ago, in my local co-op. Two stamps were huge portraits of Liz the Last and, well I can’t remember, it was either Liz’s Greek husband,(sorry, Greece) or Charlie Boy. I asked the assistant if he had any plain stamp books, as I did not want these stamps. No, he said. Well I am taking them under duress, as I am a republican and these offend me. The stamps are to (still) celebrate Liz’s 90th birthday. This birthday seems to last all year, lonegr even than the BBC coverage of the Olympics. Never mind, the BC is now teaching us all to bake more cakes, so we can get even fatter….

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