April 21, 2017
Diary 21st April
Easter weekend, became a lost weekend. We gave ourselves unashamedly to debauchery, Boys & Girls. And strong drink raged (as it does here, from time to time). Driven by our inflamed, animalistic urges we veered from manic to tender, from gently sentimental to crudely rough. It was, in short, an excellent time for us all.
Saturday night I watched a pretty woman put on her makeup. I M’s face, slightly flushed after her time alone with Dee and Gabby, reflected in the dressing table mirror in the spare room. She drank rum and sprite. Fussed with her hair. Spoke in banalities.
And now, between various feverish activities, I must decide whether or not to cancel an oral hygienist appointment at my dentist’s. The day and evening preceding we will be with old friends, eating, drinking, and over indulging. Can I face the hygienist first thing in the morning with a hangover and a mouth like a badger’s bum?
HYGIENIST: “Please Peedeel, allow me to fart in your mouth and freshen your breath.”
I think I’ll cancel!
Vast alchemies. Every three minutes, a person goes missing in the UK. Where do they all go? I find it a deeply disturbing statistic, don’t you?
Oh, yes, which reminds me. I watched the new episode of Dr Who at the weekend. Peter Capaldi’s last series playing the Dr . Mr Capaldi is a fine actor, but the Who series suffers from shite writing, and is in the guiding hands of those who believe that “narrative and characterization are too distracting from their preferred salad of videogame spaghetti”.
Long live the third rate, ay wot?
Food for thought: If all men disappeared of the face of the earth, every war would instantly be over.
February 21, 2017
Diary 20th February
And lo, it came to pass, that one consigned to the wilderness, returned. Though his disciples had rejected his ordinances – “by whose observance everyone shall live” – and cast him out into the barren desert after his many and varied failures. Yet once again, Yahweh called him to consider the future of the great nation he had once governed – governed as a sort of omnipotent autocrat, rather like Yahweh himself!
‘Don’t give up on it Tony,’ Yahweh said, his voice grave, but untroubled.
‘Is it you Lord? My God almighty, Maker of Heaven and Earth? Have you come to me again?’
‘Why Lord? What do you require of me now? Is it a new war?’
And so Yahweh explained his growing conviction of a final catastrophe. ‘Brexit will end the opportunity and fulfillment that was unfolding before mankind! Madness has taken possession of the world. And your mission, Tony Blair, should you choose to accept it, is to go from this wilderness and preach my true message to your people…Only the EU can make a silk purse from this sow’s ear! It is an organization that you were born to preside over! Stop the rot, turn back the clock. Take up your crown, become EU president! Make the ignorant see; the bigoted tolerant. Turn these misguided miscreants into forward looking creatures…!’
And so it came to pass that Tony Blair, with his salesman’s smile and large self-belief, his ex-barrister’s ability to accept and argue not necessarily compatible things, made his speech suggesting democracy should be abandoned, that there should be an anti-democratic uprising of the people of the UK who voted against Brexit, and that, unable to exist without scraps from the EU table, the UK should remain a member of the EU.
Ah, doesn’t Mr Blair recognise himself as one of the reasons for the result of that terrible Brexit vote? While he was busy washing the blood from his hands after all those wars, he lost touch with ‘the people’. As Christopher Lasch stated (The Revolt of the Elites) identity politics would grow because it served the same function as religion once did:
‘The same benefits misleadingly associated with religion – security, spiritual comfort, dogmatic relief from doubt – are thought to flow from a therapeutic politics of identity. In effect, identity politics has come to serve as a substitute for religion. Or at least for the feeling of self-righteousness that is so commonly confused with religion.
These developments shed further light on the decline of democratic debate. ‘Diversity’, a slogan that looks attractive on the face of it, has come to mean the opposite of what it appears to mean. In practice, diversity turns out to legitimise a new dogmatism, in which rival minorities take shelter behind a set of beliefs impervious to rational discussion.’
Mr Blair, wealth personified, wore the borrowed robes of socialism for the briefest of moments. And then:
“Blair mixes with the Buffetts and the Gateses,” said John Kampfner, (Blair’s Wars), “where it is seen as matter of no great surprise that you arrive in a private jet. In Blairland, there is a sense of: ‘I have become part of the Davos global elite. But I haven’t been able to earn properly until now…'”
Almost single-handedly he managed to trash the New Labour brand. He made mugs of the British people. Fought wars that should never have been fought. He was an elitist who droned on and on about ‘broken Britain’.
In short, he’s toxic, baby – even with his God at his side!
How the UK voted and why? Lord Ashcroft’s EU referendum poll, a reminder to us all.
“Nearly half (49%) of leave voters said the biggest single reason for wanting to leave the EU was “the principle that decisions about the UK should be taken in the UK”. One third (33%) said the main reason was that leaving “offered the best chance for the UK to regain control over immigration and its own borders.” Just over one in eight (13%) said remaining would mean having no choice “about how the EU expanded its membership or its powers in the years ahead.” Only just over one in twenty (6%) said their main reason was that “when it comes to trade and the economy, the UK would benefit more from being outside the EU than from being part of it.”
Jeremy Corbin looks the part an old testament prophet, don’t you think? Just the man to lead his party on an Exodus through the wilderness. Promises of the promised land in return for their faithfulness will keep his people with him.
Why not in the process revamp his party…?
He’s going to be in the wilderness a couple of decades. He could:
Rename it: “The United Kingdom Peoples Party” or the “United Kingdom Socialist Party”. Give the party a new constitution. Form alliances with the Green party, The LibDem party, even, if necessary, the “Raving Monster We’re Left of Everything Party”!
Always remember: If you remain unelected, you will change nothing!
Go for electoral reform, including the introduction of some form of proportional representation. Scrap the House of Lords. Have greater local democracy and aim for a full federal system in the UK (which would make the concept of Scottish Independence redundant).
Engage with the people.
Empower the people.
Win the people.
Not that I’m holding my breath or feeling TOO expectant as to the likelihood of this prospect, but hope springs eternal, as they say.
March 16, 2016
Diary 16th March
Earlier, a sky the colour of spilled ink, carelessly puddled over sleeping fields. No memory of daylight in its oppressive blindness. No suggestion of a dawn to come…And cold, too…Shivery cold.
The daffodils are out in patches along the hedgerow. I can sense them, not see them, but I know they’re there. It’s like standing in a crypt surrounded by fat cats on the patio. Soon the bluebells will dazzle visitors.
Now, I sit and watch the steam rise from my coffee cup…
So far this week we’ve been told that foreign travel will become more expensive if we leave the EU. Our ports and airports won’t be able to cope with the influx of “visitors”. My Aunt Mabel’s tit will catch in her mangle…And now today we learn, horror of horrors, the high-flying Prime Minister of Malta, Joseph Muscat, said yesterday that if the UK exited the EU it would “not be trusted” again.
In any negotiate, he said: “EU leaders would be keen to show to their national audiences which might warm to the idea of leaving the union that such a process would be very ugly, painful and costly.”
And therein lies one of the major problems of the EU. All the politicians recognise how unpopular it’s become – not just in the UK, but right across the board. Yet they do nothing to address this situation…Let sleeping dogs lie; the gravy train must roll on!
Never mind. President Obama is coming to the UK to save the day…
Recently read: “The Love-Charm of Bombs: Restless lives in the second world war”, by Lara Feigel, who has created an “ensemble piece” about five novelists who endured the bombs and blackouts in London when it was getting the shite kicked out of it by the German Luftwaffe. The novelists are Elizabeth Bowen, Henry Green, Graham Greene, Rose Macaulay and…Hilde Spiel (?).
“London is extraordinarily pleasant these days with all the new spaces, and the rather Mexican effect of ruined churches,” Graham Greene told Anthony Powell in December 1940. One hopes he had his tongue firmly planted in his cheek at the time (although I doubt he did!)…?
Henry Green was a volunteer fireman, Bowen and Greene were ARP wardens, and Macaulay was an ambulance driver.
Sex was a panacea to all that death and destruction surrounding them. The blackout became a time for heavy breathing and furtive couplings. Macaulay had an intense affair with a married man who had once been a Catholic priest. Green and Greene were both inveterate womanisers. Bowen lived with a husband who tolerated her affairs with other men’…only Hilde Spiel remained monogamous in this sea of bombs and adultery…
Enjoyed this gossipy book very much.
March 11, 2016
Diary 11th March
CDs scattered over the unmade bed and my guitar resting on the chair in the corner. Last night the house was filled with smooth jazz sounds that faded somewhere beyond midnight into sleep. When I woke, I watched you sleeping. I wondered what you did to that other person I met all those years ago? They had your hands and voice. Your eyes…
They had your feckin’ temper, too!
But where the hell did they go…?
Then I think of all the shit-storms we’ve weathered together. Most things seem to get rubbed smooth by time, by regret – but not us! Remember our so called friends? What they said about us, way back then?
“It can’t last…She’s a bad un…You’ll both be sorry…!”
‘To hell with them,’ we said, in the nicest possible way. And together we were like some noir tableau, eyeball-to-eyeball with our sin, ready to burn down the world…
Throughout his life H G Wells championed the cause of a world government. He projected it in “The Shape of Things to Come” as a world council of scientists, a benevolent dictatorship that abolishes all religion and outlaws war. Earlier, in “Anticipations” Wells predicted the “unification” of English speaking states into “a New Republic dominating the world”, and which ultimately becomes the basis of a new world state. In “The Open Conspiracy” he advocates a “world commonwealth” governed benevolently by a scientific elite. In “The New World Order” Wells outlined his plans for the creation of such a “World Government”.
H G admitted that the establishment of such a government would be difficult. It would have to be carried out piecemeal and over a long period of time. Yet he saw it as the only hope for humankind. A world state would abolish war and want; nationalism would become redundant, a thing of the past; universal education would abolish ignorance. Organised religion would be cast aside, thus ending centuries of religious conflict.
Wells was indeed a prophet – one listened to attentively by large audiences…listened to but then ignored! It is the fate of prophets.
Today we still have national boundaries, international antagonisms occur with depressing regularity. The UN is possibly the nearest we’ve come to a “World Government”, but only as the barest of beginnings. We have the EU, of course. It grows year on year…It has its own currency, the Euro, although not all member states use that…
Many advocates of the “Federated States of Europe” have adopted and adapted ideas originally propounded by Wells. Would World Government end war? There are those who think the EU has prevented wars…certainly one of the foundation stones of the EU was ‘make war unthinkable and materially impossible”.
In 1991 there was war in Slovenia; 1991 to 95 there was the Croatian War of Independence; 1992 to 95 there was the Bosnian war; 1998 to 1999 there was the Kosovo war; 1999 to 2001 there was Insurgency in the Preševo Valley with conflict between Yugoslavia and Albanian insurgents; 2001 there was insurgency in the Republic of Macedonia, an armed conflict between the ethnic Albanian National Liberation Army and the security forces of the Republic of Macedonia. The EU failed abysmally to react to these conflicts in the Balkans and UN peacekeepers from the Netherlands failed to prevent the Srebrenica massacre, “the largest mass murder in Europe since the second world war”.
So has the EU made war materially impossible…?
Britain and France are two of the world’s largest suppliers of military hardware…both countries have engaged in numerous conflicts around the globe in the past decade.
What about want? Has the EU abolished want?
Since 2007 unemployment has consistently risen in those countries that had adopted the Euro. One in five under-25s in the European Union labour force is currently unemployed, with the figures particularly dire in the south. Poor growth, widespread austerity programmes and the winding up of job-creating stimulus measures threaten further unemployment overall.
In Portugal, where the youth unemployment rate stands at 27%, some 40% of 18- to 30-year-olds say they would consider emigrating for employment reasons. In some countries, such as Italy, a constant brain-drain is one more depressing symptom of a stagnant economy. In Ireland, where discouragement among young workers has shot up since 2005, migration has doubled over the same period, with most of the departed aged between 20 and 35.
A report on poverty published (19th Feb 2016) by Caritas Europa states it found disturbing levels of deprivation in the seven EU countries worst hit by the economic crisis: Cyprus, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Portugal, Romania and Spain. According to the report, almost half of Bulgarians (48%) and more than 40% of Romanians are currently at risk of poverty.
In fourteen out of the EU’s 28 member states, one in three children are considered to be living in poverty.
The Caritas figures are broadly confirmed by the EU’s official statistical agency, Eurostat, which ascertained that one in four citizens were at risk of poverty and social exclusion.
So, despite the overall wealth of the European Union, poverty is still at a relatively high level and growing. (yet I seem to recall the EU in 2005 made it one of their aims to abolish poverty by 2010?).
Has the EU abolished want…not yet, it hasn’t.
March 10, 2016
Diary 10th March
I miss all those
wonderful unfortunate moments on TV – Beeb viewers, apparently, were left “choking on their morning toast” when they saw forty-five year old Helen Butter, one of the Yorkshire all woman’s rowing team, rowing naked from the waist down on the box.
This broadcast of the ladies “princess parts” occurred last Tuesday morning – but I missed it!
Anyway, all the best to Helen and the team. As far as I’m concerned she can show her “Hairy Mary” whenever and where ever she wants!
Yesterday afternoon, holed up in the bedroom, curtains tight drawn on all that wind and rain, making love in the half-dark, then eating chocolate washed down with champagne. Later we had candles round the room to provide some flickering illumination…
In many cultures darkness is seen as another kind of light – a light requiring a new way of seeing…
Jean Claude Juncker, ex prime minister of Luxembourg, wannabe ambassador of the great tax avoidance scheme, and president of the European commission, appeared to mock David Cameron’s “renegotiation” the other day, saying the Prime Minister was grateful for his aid in resolving his “self-induced problem”.
“Peace is never a sure thing. Anyone who thinks that peace is set in eternity is fundamentally wrong. And there is war again in Europe,” Mr Juncker said, referring to conflict in Ukraine…which the EU has been powerless to do much about.
He warned that the refugee crisis poses a risk to the “highly sensitive” Balkans following the conflicts in Kosovo and Bosnia.
“Europe gains whenever we point out that Europe is a major project for peace. Whoever does not believe in Europe, who doubts Europe, whoever despairs of Europe, should visit the military cemeteries in Europe.”
He warned that the “enormous stupidity” of two world wars could return to Europe.
Mr Junker’s father was a conscript in the Nazi Wehmacht during world war two. I wonder does he think the “enormous stupidity” was Britain’s declaration of war on Hitler’s Germany in 1939 or Hitler’s invasion of Poland…?
Dr Liam Fox, the former defence secretary, commented: The military cemeteries of Europe are testament to the failure of the continent to control extremism in the twentieth century.
“Had Britain not been a free and independent nation, we would have been unable to intervene to protect Europe from the result of its own folly.
“Before we are lectured by the European Commission, we should take a look at the rise of extremism across the continent and ask whether they are helping or hurting.”
Politicians on all sides appear to be clutching at fecking straws…
And Brussels chiefs (would that be Geronimo and Sitting Bull…?) want a centralised EU asylum force, the European Asylum Support Office, with powers to control the immigration policies of all member states. This plan has been kept secret for months to avoid inflaming opinion in the UK ahead of the EU membership referendum on June 23. But it was finally announced because of the current migration problems…to help dispel the view that EU politicians are totally at odds with each other, and running round like headless chickens.
Actually I believe we’d be better off with headless chickens in control…
Silence must always be better than bullshit…although, they say bullshit baffles brains?
D’you have a problem with sneezing in company?
To avoid sneezing stick your forefinger way up your bum…this distracts you, takes your mind of the sneeze, and prevents you spraying all that nastiness over your friends and colleagues!
August 28, 2015
June 8, 2015
Music is important to me. This morning Henryk Górecki’s Symphony No. 3, Op. 36, Symfonia pieśni żałosnych (Symphony of Sorrowful Songs) plays in my headphones. The solo voice in the first movement sings a Polish lament of Mary, Christ’s mother. In the second movement the same soprano voice sings a message written on the wall of a Gestapo cell during the second world war. The themes here are of motherhood and loss through war.
Helena Wanda Błażusiakówna wrote the message on the Gestapo cell wall. She was eighteen years old at the time, little more than a feckin’ child. She wrote: “O Mamo nie płacz nie-Niebios Przeczysta Królowo Ty zawsze wspieraj mnie” (Oh Mamma do not cry – Immaculate Queen of Heaven support me always)…
She wasn’t thinking about herself. No, feck it. She was thinking about her mother. She recognised it would be her mother who would experienced true despair at her daughter’s ultimate fate.
Xenophobia seems rampant in the UK nowadays. People never learn from the lessons of the past…
Day before yesterday, early A.M., I’m in the living room with my damaged thoughts. Four cats there, keeping me sleepy company. I catch movement from the corner of my eye. Glancing over, I see a mouse…Un ratón! Une souris! Un topo! It’s running in short spurts along the skirting towards the open door to the hall.
Feckin’ incredible, boys and girls.
Four furry heads rise and observe – glowing eyes full of lethal intent – the slow progess of Mr mouse, who seems totally oblivious of any cat presence or immediate danger. Then, almost with a shrug of feline shoulders, the four lower their heads and go back to sleep…Or a semblance of sleep. While I leap from the sofa and give chase to the little gray interloper.
I realise then, at that precise point in time, the cats keep me around as their pet in order to limit the incursions of unwanted creatures from the great outdoors. I’m the chief rat and mouse catcher. My sole raison d’être…
Last night, talk of extraterrestrial life forms on Earth. ‘Already here, probably,’ I proclaimed (a little pissed, perhaps). ‘Arrived before life as we know and accept it came into existence. It’s digital ‘life’, a computer virus, countless billions of years old…’
Programmed by God…?
Undetected by Norton or Mcafee!
It’s here feeding off the world wide web, transforming certain users into mindless, hate-filled trolls. It loves pornography and Yahell and Faecesbook. The Earth today is alien heaven…
I see Cheltenham Ladies’ College is considering getting rid of prep – homework to the uninitiated. It was in the Times newspaper. It’s in order to tackle an “epidemic” of teenage depression and anxiety currently infecting UK schools. Eve Jardine-Young, principal of the 162-year-old boarding and day school in Gloucestershire, said that over the next five years they will review whether to stop giving pupils homework.
Meanwhile, Teachers are being trained to spot mental illness and from September pupils will attend weekly meditation classes and be given twice as long to walk between lessons.
Jardine-Young warned that the average age at which depression was first diagnosed had almost halved from 29 in the 1960s to 15-and-a-half early this century. “We’ve created this epidemic of anxiety for ourselves as a society, and if our obligation as educators is to try to the best of our ability to set young people up as best we can for whatever the future may hold, then to ignore this whole area or to trivialise it is really irresponsible.”
Cheltenham Ladies’ is looking into university-style “flip learning”, where pupils read up on material before classes, as an alternative to homework in two or three subjects. Ms Jardine-Young also said that smartphones, tablets and laptops are making it difficult to keep stress from the outside world coming into the college.
Yeah, I bet it is. But anything that helps combat the worsening state of adolescent mental health must be for the good. Kids today face too much pressure, born of high societal expectations. They have to succeed in a materialistic society that exhibits all the values of a deranged psychopath; a society that, like any multinational corporation, only worries about ‘profit’ and ‘loss’. Nothing else matters a fig…
I think it’s very possible death created time to grow the things its going to kill…
To see in the life cycle of the caterpillar
The struggle of the soul
Ummm, work is calling me. No rest for the wicked, and I am very wicked…
March 30, 2011
Well I keep hearing about cuts…cuts here, cuts there. Armageddon confronts us. Even that great British shibboleth Defense has to make savings.
Uuuummm. Strangely, even after the “cuts” Britain’s spending on defense will be almost 6% of total government expenditure. In real terms the defense budget 2010/2011 will be 11% up on 1997, representing the longest period of sustained growth since the 1980s.
Don’t believe it? See HERE.
Britain share of global military expenditure is 3.8%. Russia’s is 3.5%. Africa’s is 2%. Even after cuts the UK is the fourth biggest defense spender in the world.
We love WAR? Or the great British public are
twats misguided? You Choose…
July 31, 2010
October 24, 2009
Rafael Advanced Defense Systems Ltd won’t be moving into the pop video market despite rumors to the contrary.
Sure, their stall at Aero India 2009 had playing on a big screen this Bollywood dance number – Israeli performers in full Bollywood costume singing in English about the potential for the Indo-Israeli defense trade relationship!
India is the number one customer when it comes to the Israeli defense industry – spending $1.5 billion a year! Israel has become India’s second most important supplier of arms and munitions (Russia’s still number one).
So with India intending to up their spend on munitions by an additional $40 billion over the next ten years, Israeli companies are preparing to do even more business with them – and this video is to help by building confidence between India and Rafael!
Ummm. See what you think?
Money well spent d’you think?