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The Bruges Group spearheaded the intellectual battle to win a vote to leave the European Union and, above all, against the emergence of a centralised EU state.
The Bruges Group spearheaded the intellectual battle to win a vote to leave the European Union and, above all, against the emergence of a centralised EU state.
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Colin Bullen has been a convinced opponent of UK involvement in the European project since it was first mooted, believing that the EU was bad for the people of the UK, and indeed for those of the rest of Europe. In the 1970s he joined 'Operation Out’, and helped deliver leaflets for the No campaign in the 1975 referendum. He then spent more...
Colin Bullen has been a convinced opponent of UK involvement in the European project since it was first mooted, believing that the EU was bad for the people of the UK, and indeed for those of the rest of Europe. In the 1970s he joined 'Operation Out’, and helped deliver leaflets for the No campaign in the 1975 referendum. He then spent more than twenty years on the National Committee of the Campaign for an Independent Britain, being Chairman of the Campaigning Secretariat for five of those years. He was, as membership secretary, on the first National Committee of UKIP for five years, belonged to the trade union group the Campaign Against Euro Federalism, supported the Labour Euro Safeguards Campaign, and also the Democracy Movement, manning street stalls, and delivering leaflets on their behalf. He provides articles for the Eurorealist bulletin, produced by long time activist Derek Bennett. Despite previous activity with other parties he now supports the Johnson government, as the promises made concerning Brexit appear to being kept. On a personal note he spent over forty years working in IT, has been a lifelong trade unionist, and is a reader at his local church.
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Heroes and snowflakes

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A few days ago my wife and I were walking across the local supermarket car park when we met one of our teammates from our bowls club. After a few minutes conversation about the new season, and complaining about the dilatory manner in which the local council is dealing with the renewal of the club’s lease, we went to the shops, while he strode off towards the club. Nothing remarkable about any of that, except that just over 77 years ago, on 6th June 1944, he was landing on the D-Day beaches, and is now over 100 years old.

I reflected how heroic were the men and women of his generation, and also how modest. He refuses to say much about his wartime experiences, as they bring back too many memories of fallen comrades. One of our other fellow bowlers, who sadly recently died at the age of 96, spent the Second War in submarines, even being depth charged, while my parents, living in south east London were bombed in two wars, losing their house in 1940.

What a contrast we see as we contemplate the current scene, where pusillanimous weaklings abound, particularly in our so called universities. The fragile snowflakes who now infest these institutions are unable to endure ideas which conflict with their own, demanding trigger warnings, no platforming and safe spaces in case their sensibilities are offended. I suppose they burst into tears if anyone tells them that they might be wrong about something!

Of course this absurd state of affairs would not exist if it were not for the politically motivated, frequently Marxist, lecturers and university administrators who, instead of telling the students that they are there to learn, not impose ridiculous, and neurotic, ideas, actively encourage them.

As I write St Andrews University is reported as enforcing diversity modules before students are accepted on courses, involving the acceptance of being obliged to accept 'personal guilt' and only pass by giving acceptable answers to compulsory questions on sustainability, consent and good academic practice, as determined by the fascists setting the tests.

The applicants are told that acknowledging personal guilt is a starting point in overcoming unconscious bias, and, if the latter disagree, they are told that they are incorrect, and are forced to redo the course if they get too many wrong in the opinion of the arrogant dictators setting the questions. Students are told that equality does not mean treating everyone the same but that in fact ‘equality may mean treating people differently and in a way that is appropriate to their needs so that they have fair outcomes and equal opportunity’. Obviously how you determine such parameters is at the behest of the ‘woke’.

Some students, obvious insufficiently brainwashed by the Marxists at the secondary schools, have rightly objected, pointing out that this process is contrary to academic freedom and freedom of thought, but this is not the first university to move towards these courses, with Kent also making students complete bizarre induction training. Emeritus professor of sociology Frank Furedi, said it was 'a corrosive form of indoctrination’, while Professor of Education at Derby University Dennis Hayes said such courses are 'reducing universities to training institutions in woke ideology'.

How, and why, starting with a nation of heroes, have we reached this point, where so many of the younger generation seem frightened of their own shadow, and have no appreciation of free speech and democracy?

As far as the how is concerned one can hardly offer a better answer than that given, in that excellent film ‘The Lion in Winter’, by Henry II, when asked by his estranged wife Eleanor of Aquitaine, “How, from where we started, did we reach this?” answered “Step by step, step by step”.

The why is also clear, although vigorously denied by those who are seeking to undermine our society, and that is the burrowing away by the termites of Marxism, as they prosecute their ‘long march through the institutions’, corrupting everything, but in particular the education system. They know that the ordinary, sensible electorates of the West will never let them win at the ballot box, so they have sought a different method of achieving their ends. To brainwash the young, both at the level of at secondary, and tertiary education, has been their aim, and in this they have succeeded, convincing many that the West, and Britain in particular, has been the source of most of the wickedness in the world.

Marxists, despite many of them being apparently intelligent, are for the most part, morons, who refuse to recognize that, wherever Marxism has been tried, it has been a disaster, resulting in economic collapse, and dictatorship by monsters such as Stalin and Mao. Of course they always claim that this result is due to the fact that it was not implemented properly, but the millions who have died thanks to this insane philosophy would, if they could, attest to its fundamental evil.

Much more sinister are those who are aware only too well of the reality of Marxism, but are using it to try to achieve power for themselves. I was astounded to learn that there are Marxists, or their fellow travellers among imbecilic ‘woke’, who are now claiming that 2 plus 2 does not necessarily equal 4. This is of course the claim made by O’Brien of Orwell’s Inner Party in 1984, when he says “Whatever the Party holds to be the truth, is truth. It is impossible to see reality except by looking through the eyes of the Party”. To use the Labour Party approved vocabulary Marxists are scum.

So what can be done about it? A full return to selective education, with competitive exams providing the means by which those suitable for university can be identified, should be reinstated, while the ludicrous changes to the university system implemented by Blair must be reversed, with only a minority being sent to a much reduced number of institutions, with the whole system of fee paying and student loans abolished. The latter is unfair to the youngsters, and wasteful of taxpayer funded resources. It has also led to the ridiculous idea that policemen and nurses must have degrees, thus excluding those who have a genuine vocation, but lack formal qualifications in often irrelevant subjects. The scientific side of university education should be retained, but the vast bulk of the humanity courses, resulting in Mickey Mouse degrees in absurd subjects, should be abolished. The Marxist teachers and lecturers should be sacked, and told to do something more useful than corrupting young minds, like digging roads, while being excluded from any further involvement with education.

What will actually be done? I can say it in one word: Nothing. The chattering classes, and the majority of politicians are graduates, and clearly believe that if you do not have a degree it is surprising that you can walk and chew gum at the same time. The destruction of our society will continue, until a nation which is not in hock to these lunatics takes over. A nation of heroes will have been replaced by a population of snowflakes, who will be so surprised when they find that their fantasy world will not survive contact with reality.

  138 Hits

Green fascists, woke police, prosecutors and a useless political class

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In view of the problems associated with travelling abroad at the moment my wife and I have just returned from a motoring holiday around England, which, until the very end was pretty much trouble free.

However, as we reached the point of driving home from Bletchley Park, which, if one were not to take a very roundabout route through subsidiary roads, necessitated using the M25, we faced the possibility that the latter might be blocked by green scum (a noun approved by the deputy leader of the Labour party), leading to massive holdups.

These arrogant, and self righteous, green activists blocking motor ways are putting innocent people at risk, and disrupting the lives of many thousands, but, instead of an instant, and effective, response, we see the police colluding with them, and taking their part against understandably angry motorists. That the police actually escorted some of these imbeciles onto the road would be unbelievable, were it not for the previous behaviour of other officers taking the knee in sympathy with anti semitic Black Lives Matter demonstrators, and dancing with the troublemakers of Extinction Rebellion.

In their so called movement these people number a convicted dealer in heroin, and a holocaust denier, but incredibly they seem to believe that they are morally superior to the decent people to whom they are causing such problems. Unsurprisingly we are now seeing the result of the appeasement by the political and cultural elite of politically correct agitators, as those charged with defending us against criminals become instead their accomplices.

As an erstwhile supporter of the ordinary policemen and women I had assumed that the problem lay with their pusillanimous leaders but I am informed by friends, who are ex coppers, that actually the poison has spread to all ranks. This can only be made worse by the policy of recruiting only graduates in future, as these will be the products of university brainwashing by Marxist lecturers, and will be even worse. The police claim, probably with some justification that weak laws, and gutless prosecutors in the CPS, make it impossible deal with the green morons, but, if this is so, then it is up to our elected politicians to take action now.

The authorities must cease to indulge the arrogant agitators, because if they do not, and law abiding people find that they cannot rely upon the police to enforce the law, we shall see a descent into vigilantism as providing the only means of defending honest citizens from such parasitical nihilists. The growing energy crisis is merely the beginning of the disaster we face, thanks to our political elite having accepted without question the specious arguments of the environmental lobby, and its appeasement of the extremists who seek to disrupt our society.

One would have thought that the contrary, and frequently incorrect assertions made by so called scientific experts concerning the Coronavirus epidemic would have made clear that to ‘rely on the science’ means little when the science is itself questionable, but this is the mantra of those convinced that , in order to ‘save the planet’, we must sacrifice our way of life. A few years ago the scientific consensus was that we should fear the end of the current interglacial, but now the most vociferous claim that the opposite is true.

In all the propaganda from climate change obsessives how often do we hear about the medieval warming period from 950 AD to 1250 AD, when average global mean temperatures have been calculated to be similar to the early-mid-20th-century warming. Possible causes included increased solar activity, decreased volcanic activity, and changes in ocean circulation. Nothing to do with Man’s activities! This period was then followed by global cooling from about 1300 to 1850, and it should also be noted that we are actually still living in an Ice Age. About 50 million years ago, the planet was too warm for polar ice caps, but Earth has mostly been cooling ever since. Do the idiots shouting about climate change even know this? It seems unlikely, as we have learnt that one of the founders of Extinction Rebellion, when taxed with why she drives a diesel car, said that she couldn't afford an electric car, but that she needed to take her children to sports fixtures. At the same time one of the volunteers said that he could not afford solar panels, as the average cost was six thousand pounds. Are these people so steeped in their self righteous, holier-than-thou mindset that they cannot understand that it is precisely because ordinary people cannot afford to be deprived of their cars, or gas boilers, that they oppose the demands of these extremists? They are either not very bright, or blatant hypocrites, when they demand that we should sacrifice our standard of living at a time when China is intending to build hundreds of new coal fired power stations, their emissions already dwarfing ours.

While it is sensible that incremental steps be taken to replace finite resources these should not be undertaken at a precipitate rate, endangering our energy supplies, and undermining our economy, particularly when the contribution of this country to CO2 emissions represents less than one per cent of the global total. To reduce our gas storage capacity to an absolute minimum, to rely on the wind, which doesn’t always blow, and to make cars, and warm homes, too expensive for the working class, in order to appease the green obsessed chattering classes, are policies which will result in misery for millions in pursuit of a chimera. If the Conservatives wish to be reelected they should abandon this fixation on a dubious theory, and cease to listen to the environmental fanatics. The latter should transfer their attentions to the Chinese embassy, not the M25.

We should immediately restart fracking, launch a programme to develop nuclear power, both via main stations, and through the UK SMR technology envisaged by the Rolls-Royce-led UK consortium, while massively increasing our gas storage capacity, and ensuring that our coal stocks are rebuilt to the sort of level achieved by Mrs Thatcher, coal fired power stations being made available once again. Money should also be made available to develop tidal power, something which we, as an island, are in a perfect position to do.

Almost immediately on arriving home, thankfully avoiding the M25 halfwits, we were confronted with the petrol crisis, and we have not been able to find a single petrol station in our area open since. For the Remainers of course the supply problems are all to do with Brexit, but the reality is very different. Neglect and exploitation of HGV drivers has reduced the number in the profession, while the mere mention of petrol shortages caused the problem. It seems likely that this can be traced back to anti Brexit figures within the Road Haulage Association, who are so anxious to kiss the backsides of Brussels bureaucrats that they don’t care about the trouble they are causing.

Unless Boris drops this insane fixation with climate change, and puts the interests of the British people first, he will do what I thought to be impossible in 2019, and lose the next election.

  168 Hits

Alarum and excursions

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At the beginning of Act V, scene 3, of the First Part of Henry the Fourth (Folio 1, 1623), prior to the entry of the King, the Prince, Lord John of Lancaster, and Earl of Westmorland, Shakespeare gives the stage directions “Alarum, excursions”. There is no doubt about what is meant and now, with a different spelling, and a non military connotation, we understand the word alarm to mean the sudden sharp apprehension and fear resulting from the perception of imminent danger, but clearly this is not the understanding of the ‘woke’ snowflakes now dominant in our police force.

No better illustration of this attitude can be found than in the Suffolk police investigating a potential hate crime because one anonymous local neurotic had complained about a pensioner, who, as an enthusiast for American Indian culture had installed a totem pole in his garden, which contained the image of a black person. The snowflake concerned claimed that this had ‘racist overtones’, but even the police decided that there was no case to answer. However the incident was recorded as “a possible public order offence, due to the visual representation which caused alarm and distress to members of the public”. To prevent further argument the pensioner concerned painted the black face white. I feel alarm as I contemplate the rise of China, and the fall of the USA, while I am distressed by reports of young children being murdered by their own parents, but I find the complaints of the idiots on Twitter to generate either amusement or nausea. I am sure that ninety per cent of normal people feel the same way.

What a pathetic, paranoid phobic anyone offended by such a representation must be, and how truly wretched the response from the police. This sort of waste of police time is occurring when violent crime is on the rise, when young girls continue to be abused by organised gangs of those the police are afraid to name, and ordinary members of the public find their interests ignored because the police claim to be over stretched. However it should be noted that, on the same day, the police are congratulating themselves on devising gender neutral uniforms, thus bowing to the demands of the liberal left.

I do not for one moment blame the ordinary copper who I am sure is disgusted as is everyone else by these displays of political correctness, but the senior ranks must be full of those with a very different agenda. Should this continue some of our favourite dramas of the past would need changing. Regan and Carter would be leading the Sweeney to arrest veterans at war memorials who were daring to wave union flags, and engendering hate against our ‘friends and partners’ the Germans, while DCI Gene Hunt would be raiding addresses where copies of Churchill’s war memoirs were believed to have escaped the ritual book burnings.

We have endured scenes of police ‘taking the knee’ in support of the Marxists, anarchists and nihilists of Black Lives Matter, while standing by to allow similar supporters of Extinction Rebellion to disrupt the lives of the public in the name of a cause based upon false premises. Unfortunately, if the liberal Left get their way, in future the police will only recruit those with degrees, so brainwashed products of our ‘woke’ universities will come to outnumber the real coppers. The majority of the lecturers and professors in humanities in these latter institutions are nothing but propagandists for those who hate our society, and desire to see it replaced by a politically correct dictatorship of those who think just like them.

All this political distortion of values is an insult to the brave men and women who form the thin blue line, and on whom we rely to protect us, and our democratic society. In the USA the lunatics of the Left have been advocating the defunding of the police, and should such people triumph in the UK, and fully undermine the ethos of policing, then the only way decent people will obtain justice is by the rise of vigilantism, a recipe for disaster. The timid middle class might do nothing, but one can be sure that the more assertive working class will not lie down forever as their daughters are violated, and their right to freedom of expression, crushed at the behest of these ideologues.

To destroy the police will first lead to anarchy, and then, as sure as night follows day, to some sort of dictatorship, with terrible consequences for all of us. Now is the time to reverse the direction in which the woke are taking us, and restore respect for the rule of law, not of the diktats of the morons of the liberal Left.

  179 Hits

A Nest of Hornets

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Although we celebrated when European Communism collapsed at the beginning of the 1990s, it has proved not to be ‘The End of History’ as predicted by Francis Fukuyama, but more of a poisoned chalice, whose effects are becoming clearer day by day.

The Cold War has the advantage of simplicity as everyone, except the idealistic idiots of CND, and the traitorous fellow travellers who sought a Soviet triumph, were able to see that our most fundamental liberties were under threat from a totalitarian ideology, with ambitions to snuff out our democracy. We stood firm, and eventually the Soviets collapsed because of what Marxists would have referred to as their internal contradictions.

In the years that followed we came under came under attack from terrorists inspired by a mediaeval theology, and basically succeeded in driving them back. However the lack of a clearly identified enemy has led to the fragmentation of Western nations from within, as those who do not have a real foe have decided that they must find their opponents within their own society.

The Marxist organisations of Black Lives Matter, Stop the War and Extinction Rebellion have used reasonable causes to advocate extremist solutions, and have spread discord throughout society. The complete lunatics of ‘woke’ continue their campaign to denigrate our past, demonise all white people as ‘privileged’, and destroy free speech. Incidentally they might like to explain how my parents, who lived through the Great Depression, and saw a friend die of malnutrition in an English home, were ‘privileged’.

The absurd obsession of the American political class with these gender and cultural wars, to the exclusion of issues of real import, has led to probably the worst administration since the disastrous days of Herbert Hoover, with both the Presidency and Congress dominated by those who are consumed with the desire to argue about the inconsequential, while ignoring the truly significant. Not only has this already led to the betrayal of the people of Afghanistan, especially the women, but it has cast into doubt the future of the American place in the world, and to the future of NATO.

I am disgusted by the manner in which Western governments have scuttled out of Afghanistan, leaving the people to their fate. The inevitable result will be a resurgence of terrorist activity around the world, while the decent people of Afghanistan will once again be subjected to a mediaeval regime of bigots. It will embolden China, Iran and Russia, and make the world a more dangerous place for democracy. I dread to think of how of our troops those maimed in the conflict must now feel, while the loved ones of those killed must believe that they died in vain. In 1939 Leo Amery uttered his famous admonition “Speak for England” during the critical Commons debate on the German invasion of Poland and we in Tonbridge applaud our MP, Tom Tugendhat, for his similarly powerful speech on the debacle in Afghanistan.

I tremble for the future of those nations, such as Israel and Taiwan, for whom the retreat of the US to Fortress America will spell doom. For us the lesson must be that as America apparently reverts to inter war isolationism we must look to our defences. The most fundamental concept for any government should be patriotism, and the desire to put the interests of the people first, and its first duty, as is true of all governments, is the defence of the realm. We now face a world where Russia and China are hostile, Iran and associated Muslim states utterly opposed to our way of life, and, following the retreat from Afghanistan, America apparently reverting to inter war isolationism.

Obviously we are no longer the paramount military power in the world, as we were for over a century, but we are nevertheless, along with France, the only European nation which could, in the absence of American forces, resist an onslaught from the East. We must ensure that we are like a nest of hornets, sufficiently strong to make attacking us not worthwhile. This will entail immense cost, but, if American involvement in Western defences is to be curtailed, then it will be the only way to preserve our liberties.

To do this we need to double the size of the Army, and the RAF, while building a great many more Naval warships, including a large number of smaller frigates to guard our coasts, not least from the tide of illegal immigration crossing the Channel. In addition our military hardware should be built in the UK, necessitating reopening shipyards, and steelworks, while the insane policy of selling our most vital armament manufacturers to foreign owners must be stopped, and reversed. Importantly we must have a larger nuclear deterrent, which is fully independent of American control, while our capabilities in the realm of cyber space must be enhanced. All this would involve great expense, but that is the price of liberty.

Those who deride our martial abilities should remember that the UK’s DNA contains warlike Vikings, Saxons, Celts and Romans, that the British beat Philip II, Napoleon, the Kaiser and Hitler, and that when our freedoms are threatened we have always been a formidable opponent. I don’t believe that we have fundamentally changed, despite all the noise from those on the Left who hate their own country!

  244 Hits

Papers!

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Most people will not have heard of Clarence Harry Willcock, an unsung hero of British democracy. A dry-cleaning manager, and a Liberal of the old school, he was the last person in Britain to be prosecuted for refusing to produce an identity card. He was prosecuted under the National Registration Act of 1939 and fined. However, he subsequently appealed against his conviction, and the case, which became a cause célèbre, influenced Winston Churchill’s decision to scrap ID cards.

In 1950 he was stopped by a policeman who demanded to see his ID. He refused, telling him simply, “I am against this sort of thing.”, an act of resistance which inspired a movement, as soon after, the British Housewives’ League took to Parliament to set fire to their ID cards.

Mr Willcock was prosecuted and the case reached the High Court in 1951, where he was given an absolute discharge for his refusal to show his ID. He would be the last person to be prosecuted under the National Registration Act. In the judgment, Lord Chief Justice Goddard said the 1939 Act was “never passed for the purposes for which it is now apparently being used” and that using the law in this way “tends to turn law-abiding subjects into lawbreakers as such action tends to make the people resentful of the acts of the police.”

I still have the card that was issued to me, containing only name, address, and date of birth, and largely intended for use in evacuations and rationing. Given the situation during the war it was certainly understandable that such a measure was necessary, but once victory had been achieved there was no excuse for continuing with the cards. Incidentally, as even allied prisoners in German POW camps were able to forge documents capable of fooling the Gestapo, it is certain that the simple cards we had could have been faked very easily.

What this proves is emergency measures tend to extend in duration and purpose, often to the disadvantage of citizens. in the wake of 9/11, Prime Minister Tony Blair told us we couldn’t possibly fight terrorism without them, but Boris Johnson vociferously opposed the idea, noting the inevitability of mission creep, saying in 2004 that if he was asked to show his ID, he would physically eat it.

Thankfully the campaign run by NO2ID was successful, and the idea was dropped, yet those who love the idea are still trying to have the cards adopted, the current Covid emergency giving them the perfect opportunity to introduce them via the back door, starting with vaccine passports, which we can be sure would soon be extended into other areas, such as eligibility for benefits, or even age related access to the local pub.

We fought the Second World War partly so that, unlike much of the world, our citizens would not be confronted with the demand “Papers”, while going about their lives. We can be sure that those with the “put that light out” mentality of Warden Hodges of Dad’s Army fame, would take a delight in harassing ordinary people, backed by the force of the law. Those very many people who do not possess smartphones, or a mastery of computer technology, would also find themselves in the position of being second class citizens, regarded with suspicion, and even sanctioned, for not showing the proofs demanded by petty officials.

If the authoritarian instincts of the bureaucrats are allowed to prevail we risk all those liberties for which so many died, as we can be sure that the presumption of innocence would be undermined. I recall an advertisement in support of credit cards from a few years back in which an attractive girl in a bikini walked down the street with only such a card on her person. I also expect to be able to walk down the road (thankfully not in a bikini!) with no documents should I so choose. One thing of which we can be sure is that respect for the police would be undermined, as the British would not take kindly to being forced to produce proof of their identity, while those workers charged with checking such proofs would be placed in an invidious position.

Boris must wake up, and reject all proposals which would lead to this slippery slope to an authoritarian regime in Britain. Modern technology would ensure that, once the principle of such items as vaccine passports were accepted, they would swiftly evolve into a national ID system. Mr Willcock’s fight against the paper ID cards would have been in vain, as Orwell’s Big Brother state’s use of IT would make them appear benign in comparison.

  374 Hits

A Secular Religion

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In 1988 the Victoria and Albert Museum in London described itself as: "An ace caff, with quite a nice museum attached." Today we seemed to have reached the point where the NHS would describe itself as “a great Health Service, with quite a nice country attached”.

Although there was some reason for the early panic about overwhelming health care this concern has now been extended by some of the more vociferous scientific advisors to a warning that a winter flu epidemic could overwhelm the NHS, so consequently we must all continue to live under strict regulations. Of course this begs the question of whether the NHS exists to protect our health, or whether the country exists to protect the NHS.

Unfortunately, rather as is the case with Remainers worshipping at the shrine of Brussels, many people treat the NHS as some sort secular religion, which must not be criticised, and whose demands for more and more resources must be met, whatever the cost.

The reality is somewhat different.

I yield to no one in my respect and admiration for the front line workers in the NHS, nor in my gratitude to them. However, as I, and others, including many doctors and nurses, have pointed out, the effectiveness of the NHS has been undermined by asinine changes made in the past few decades.

The ever expanding NHS bureaucracy, with its ridiculous number of so called managers, has absorbed a vast number of resources, which should have been utilised to improve front line services, without in any way helping patients. These pen pushers are absurdly overpaid, and overstaffed, resulting in the creation of pointless levels of administration. One nurse of my acquaintance tells me that she once had one level of management above her, which has become seven, the vast majority of whom do nothing but pass paper up and down to each other.

Another front line worker told me that, while they were constantly being told that money was short, Human Resources opened a suite of offices, which they could use for their endless, and fruitless meetings.

In my years as chairman of our office union, I encountered this non profession of HR, which converted personnel departments, who existed to assist staff, into an arm of management which rode roughshod over them, at the same time justifying their own existence by producing countless absurd policies which actually subverted the efficiency of the organisations involved.

The malignant effect of all this has been thrown into sharp relief by the fact that retired medical professionals had their applications to help out with vaccinations refused on the bureaucratic grounds that they may not have attended nonsensical courses on diversity, or even fire training. Bureaucrats put their preposterous concerns ahead of effective action. Many of these schemes arose because of the bureaucratic regulations emanating from Brussels, so are now no longer relevant.

In addition, in the past, nursing was a vocation, recruiting from a wide spectrum of society, yet now we are told that one must be a graduate to be employed. This is as ridiculous as is the need for policeman to have degrees. Fifty years ago a large number of professions were staffed by those who learnt through apprenticeships, and on the job training, yet now those who do not attend university are regarded as unfit for the very same jobs. When I was last in hospital in 1955 they were run efficiently by the matron and the ward sisters, but now they groan under the weight of useless jumped up clerks, while willing and capable nurses are lost due to unreasonable demands that they attend university.

We are all aware of the failures in basic hygiene in hospitals, which have led to the deaths, or serious illness of many people. One friend of mine went through six years of active service in the war without a scratch, but died a couple of years ago, when he caught MRSA in a ward, although he was otherwise recovering well. The manner in which fundamental tasks, such as cleaning wards, has been outsourced, has replaced those who were direct employees, taking a pride in their work, with frequently exploited casual staff, who are expected to do the minimum necessary for their employer to justify their fees.

I have personal experience of health care in Switzerland, which was exemplary, while I know from friends that the French system is also very efficient, and easy to access. No one wants the American system, where one’s treatment is based almost solely on one’s ability to pay. but the aforementioned systems are available on a sensible insurance basis, without excluding the poorest citizens.

To even venture the opinion that something is rotten in this particular State of Denmark is to invite opprobrium, but we cannot go on pouring more and more money into something that is not able to deliver. It is time that the whole NHS was reformed to meet the requirements of the 21st Century. However, given that the Left regard the organisation as a sacred cow, and that the Conservatives lack the courage to take action, no doubt it will continue just as before.

  402 Hits

Stranger in a Strange Land

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In Exodus Moses describes himself as a “Stranger in a Strange Land”, and, after nearly three quarters of a century living in England, I sometimes feel that way, as the country I was born into recedes into the past, and an ugly reality takes its place.

I am well aware that of the existence of many social problems in the England of the 1940s, and that the economic situation was dire, the struggle with the Axis powers having virtually bankrupted the country. Nevertheless, although we had the most left wing government in our history, it was led by men who were true democratic socialists. Among others of his colleagues the Prime Minister Clement Attlee had fought for the country, while his cabinet included patriots such as Ernest Bevin, who stood up for the working class, unlike the modern Labour Party, which represents a coalition of minorities, and social democrats, not workers. The national broadcaster was still basking in the glory it won during the war, and was unafraid to speak for Britain, a complete contrast to the modern BBC, most of whose commentators support anyone rather than their own nation. The recent advent of GB news, which seeks to put forward the views of ordinary people, not, as the BBC does, those of the metropolitan elite, is the target of a left wing pressure group “Stop Funding Hate”, which is attempting to undermine its finances by pressurising companies into withdrawing advertising. Some have done so, and I for one will never buy their products again, as I prefer to deal with those who believe in free speech, and thought, not censorship.

In the 1950s working class children, such as my wife and myself benefited from the schools system, which, via the grammar schools, provided a ladder to a decent education, and career. The universities were centres of excellence, unlike today, when even an inability to formulate grammatical sentences seems to be no bar to a degree, the latter obtained at a massive cost to youngsters who have been deceived into believing that they are receiving value for money. The education system is dominated by the Left and every day we see the evidence of cancel culture being applied at all levels. When I was a lad the churches were a centre of life for many, Sunday schools being well attended, while voluntary organisations such as the Boy’s Brigade, the Cadets, and of course the Scouts and Guides, gave young people both pleasure and the moral compass so sadly lacking now.

One issue which has been addressed over the years is of course greater equality for women, yet all the justifiable gains they made are now at risk. Thanks to the lunacy of so called sexual self identification women now face defeat across the whole sporting arena, as such men are being allowed to compete against them, when their previous physical development ensures that they will inevitably win. They are expected to tolerate the closure of toilets specifically designated for female use, and the absurd situation is arising whereby abusive men could gain access to women’s refuges merely by announcing that they have self identified as women. In addition feminine icons such as Germaine Greer and J K Rowling are subject to constant vilification for asserting that one cannot change sex merely by claiming that one has done so.

Of course the aberration of over forty years of membership of the undemocratic European union has damaged our democracy, as is obvious from the fact that, following the 2016 referendum, the establishment, backed by those who refuse to recognize that the losers of a democratic vote should accept the result, prevented the will of the people being implemented for five years. After winning the war the vast majority of the British people in the 1940s would never have believed that, within thirty years, the independence of their country would have been compromised by the politicians voluntarily handing the governance of the county over to unelected bureaucrats in a foreign country. The continuing refusal by Remainers to accept the verdict is disgusting, but now seems a normal reaction by so many.

The rise of self righteous protest groups, who claim the right to disrupt civic life regardless of the misery caused, is poisoning democratic debate. “Extinction Rebellion” activists block roads, interfere with the journeys of rail commuters, attack commercial buildings, and even attempt to censor our daily newspapers. Ostensibly they do this in the name of a theory that the planet is undergoing a dangerous episode of warming, brought about by the emissions emanating from human activity. They claim that they are either ‘drawing attention’ to the problem, something hardly required, given that we have all been exposed to their views ad nauseam, or that they are taking direct action aimed at stopping those activities which they deem unacceptable. However it is noticeable that these gestures are all directed at Western enterprises. While many of their supporters are gullible idealists, who think that they are responding to a higher moral imperative, the driving force behind this organisation, just as it is behind other such protest groups such as “Black Lives Matter”, and “Stop the War”, is an ingrained hatred of Western civilisation, arising from the anarchistic and nihilistic philosophies which have always inspired such people. I remember when, at a time when Labour was devoted to democratic socialism, it issued lists of proscribed undemocratic organisations, whose members sought to infiltrate the party in order to subvert its aims. I have no doubt that had groups such as these existed in those days, they would have been included in such lists.

However these people are a symptom of a deeper malaise, which is a threat to everything we hold dear, as the British public is largely unaware of the fact that the country is sleepwalking into the kind of dystopia described by Orwell in 1984. Left wing organisations are constantly promoting the idea that anyone who dares to suggest that they love their country, that they do not wish to see its history rewritten, that they do not admit guilt for the crime of being white, or heterosexual, or do not hang their heads in shame because they want to own cars, is committing a Thoughtcrime, and must be silenced. While for the moment individuals may be able to reject these accusations with the contempt they deserve, it is becoming clear that pusillanimous commercial enterprises are choosing to take the knee to these fascists, and change their policies accordingly. That these people are able to use social media platforms, which are dominated by technology giants run by those with similar views, is a disgrace, and yet another reason for closing down these vile cesspits of abuse and hate. If these vociferous extremists are able to achieve their aims then the day of the Thought Police will truly be with us.

Naturally the Covid pandemic has thrown everything up into the air, as, not merely Britain, but the world, have faced a threat requiring a massive response. Despite the constant carping by those such as the BBC, and ridiculous claims made by supporters of the Left, it is obvious than Bori and his ministers, when faced such an emergency have done as well as anyone could have done in the circumstances, particularly by implementing the successful vaccine programme.

Wash your hands; observe the speed limit; keep six feet apart; eat this, not that; don’t drink; wear a mask; get rid of your car, and walk; don’t smoke; keep off the grass; live in a cold home; oppose separate lavatories for the sexes; allow men self identifying as women to dominate female sports; don’t say that; don’t think that. As a reasonably intelligent, mature adult I try to take a responsible attitude to social norms, obeying sensible laws as I have always done, but I will not take a knee to those demanding that their every whim be satisfied, nor to climate change obsessives. However I am sick to death of being harassed, hectored, harangued and lectured by those who are determined to close down free speech, and force society into a straightjacket which conforms to their own views, and none other.

Many people are suffering the loss of reputation, employment, or even of liberty, for daring to stand against the tide of political correctness, indeed arrant nonsense, infesting our country. The persecution of academics, and students, at a number of universities, for daring to defy the fashionable dogmas is evidence enough of this.

It is this destruction of free speech, and thought, which, if allowed to continue, will truly tear this country away from its past, and will make it, for those of us who grew up believing in our basic freedoms for which millions died, an alien place. A fightback is being mounted by those such as the Free Speech Union, and Laurence Fox, but will it be enough? If not then it will be a Strange Land indeed.

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Snatching defeat from the jaws of victory

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The title of this posting is undoubtedly a cliche, but unfortunately, for those of us who fought for so long to free our nation from foreign dominance, to restore the ancient freedom of free speech we once enjoyed, and to put an end to the arrogance of the liberal elite, it appears it may prove only too true.

When the result of the 2016 EU referendum became clear we rejoiced that, despite being opposed by all the so called great and good, the politicians who treated the ordinary people with contempt, and a media, particularly the BBC, dominated by those who supported them, we, who had walked the streets, and never given up, had triumphed.

We had driven back the tide of bureaucratic control, emanating from Brussels, which promoted a massively growing increase in this country, restored our right to hold those who ruled the nation democratically accountable, making it impossible for the MPs to shuffle off responsibility by claiming that they could not oppose the Brussels bureaucrats, while putting the Civil Service once more firmly under the control of elected representatives.

And then. In Kipling’s famous poem “The Road to Mandalay” there is a line “An' the dawn comes up like thunder outer China 'crost the Bay!”, but this time it was not the dawn but a foul virus, originating, either by accident or design, in a Chinese laboratory, or one of their filthy wet markets, which crashed like thunder across the entire world, spreading a pandemic which disrupted the entire human race.

We are all aware of the effects this disease had had on the UK, but perhaps one of the most significant is due to the fact that our newly elected Prime Minister, an optimistic, patriotic man, who was immensely popular, nearly died. Although he survived it is obvious that he has been badly affected by his brush with death, the old Boris having been replaced by a man much more unsure of himself, and susceptible to being guided by those he would once have dismissed as weak wallies.

Many of us who fought for freedom from the EU over decades are a little ambivalent about Boris. He was not with us when we walked the streets delivering leaflets, or held meetings putting the case for leaving the EU at various by-elections over the years. However we were aware from the early years of UKIP that he had sympathy with our views, and eventually he did put his shoulder to the wheel. His position as a significant politician was immensely helpful, and he stuck to his guns through the referendum, and the subsequent elections so he does deserve our thanks.

Now however he is showing a timid side, which risks allowing the Remainer elite to reverse much of which Brexit has achieved, and will achieve, if the UK defies the nay sayers, and tells those such as Macron to get lost. Written in 1845 the poem by Robert Browning, ironically titled ”The Lost Leader” contains a famous line “Never glad confident morning again!”, and this is how many of us feel as we watch the promise of 2016 being undermined, and the irreconcilable Remainer bureaucracy seeking to force us back onto our knees to Brussels.

In the first days of the pandemic the government was operating without a clear map as to how to proceed, so it is understandable that they reacted in the way they did. Now however we have a population in which some eighty per cent have antibodies to the virus, and the daily death toll is less than the number killed on the roads. Covid is not the bubonic plague, the number having died is less than those who died in the 1957 flu epidemic, while the 1968 flu killed 80,000 in the UK without any lockdowns being considered.

However, as hopefully we near the end of the crisis, the choice of those supposedly advising the government, such as some of the members of SAGE, is questionable. One professor from UCL, who sits on this body, has been reported as saying that certain restrictions should be maintained indefinitely, yet this woman is a member of the Communist Party of Britain, which aims at “a revolutionary transformation of society to end capitalism, creating a socialist state of Britain”. She has also praised China, the cause of the pandemic, and the oppressors of the Tibetan and Uyghur peoples, as “a socialist, collective system, not an individualistic, consumer-oriented, profit-driven society badly damaged by twenty years of failed neoliberal economic policies”. As we know the idea of a totalitarian government, ordering the population about, is one which Communists love, so a desire to unnecessarily extend controls is something those like this professor would probably support for political reasons.

In addition, since the time of the Russian revolution Communism has been responsible for more than one hundred million deaths around the world, oppressed half of Europe for nearly fifty years, and created a slave state in North Korea, while reducing nations which tried it to penury. Only the wilfully blind could look at this record, and yet still support the system. All this must beg the question of why so many of those paid to advise the government, and to educate our young are quite happy to declare themselves Marxists, and allowed to hold positions as dons at all universities, but particularly Oxford and Cambridge. Did we not have enough of these people in the days of Philby and his accomplices?

Incidentally it is now obvious that those who naively believed that females are more moderate, and tolerant, than men, have been proved quite wrong. Many women in public life have shown themselves to be extremists, not least in the church where the female Bishop of St Davids was forced to apologise after she tweeted that readers should ‘Never, never, never trust a Tory’.

Those of us who worked so long to restore the country we knew before Covid, ‘woke’ lunatics, and climate change obsessives, one can only paraphrase Shakespeare’s Mercutio, and say "A plague on all your houses”.

The alternatives to Boris would be disastrous, either a Labour party dedicated to making us once again servants of Brussels, or a Conservative from that part of the party which took us into, and kept in, the EU in the first place. He must rediscover his optimism, and overrule the politically motivated scientific Cassandras who would never agree to restore full freedom to the people, while defying the EU over Northern Ireland, ideally pulling us out of the massively flawed withdrawal deal. If he does not then we shall indeed snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.

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The King’s Suit of Clothes

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All socially aware people know of the political, and cultural, nonsense peddled by the intelligentsia, whose loyalties lie anywhere but with their own country, or the interests of ordinary people, but who like to regard themselves as so superior to those they regard as plebs. Show them a union flag, and they sneer, the National Anthem gives them a fit of the vapours, dare to suggest that perhaps this country is already too crowded to accommodate the millions of the third world who would like to move here, and they cry racism, while a male merely expressing a healthy interest in a member of the opposite sex, invites being treated as some sort of predator.

Of course these people do not limit themselves to the above but also infest the world of the arts, and it is this aspect of their malign influence which I would like to address, as it illustrates both their perverted view of the world, and also offers a hope that they are finally being rumbled by normal, sane people.

During the course of our holidays my wife and I have visited numerous galleries, inter alia the Uffizi in Florence, the Hermitage in St Petersburg, the Louvre, and Musee d’Orsay in Paris, the Belvedere in Vienna, the Frick Collection in New York, cultural icons such as the Vatican, and of course our own National Gallery, Tate Britain, the Queen’s Gallery, plus many others. We have stood in awe before such masterpieces as Michelangelo’s David, his Pieta, and the Sistine Chapel, the great works of the Neo Classicists and the Romantics in Paris, the Impressionists, and the beautiful pictures of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood.

Probably unwisely we have also visited the galleries at the Arch at La Defence, and the Pompidou Centre, in Paris, MOMA in New York, Tate Modern and several other similar institutions, which specialise in modern, and abstract art. This is where one encounters what I can only describe as pretentious rubbish, produced by those who only talents are to think up absurd titles, and to write the utterly idiotic descriptions attached to the pieces. For the most part the nearer to our time one approaches, the worse the pictures on offer become. I know that it is often said that in the past the public in some of the totalitarian states states ignored their masters in order to visit such galleries in preference to those containing Soviet realism, or Nazi propaganda, but I suspect it was more an act of political defiance than any great interest in the actual exhibitions.

I have seen visitors discussing the great significance of what is no more than a blob in the centre of the paper, one rectangle on top of another, or one looking like which that my cat produces when disposing of a fur ball. The output of Jackson Pollock, who considered using a technique of pouring or splashing liquid household paint onto the canvases a valid means of creation, are known as Pollocks, but my assessment would replace the ‘P’ with a ‘B’. We are asked to believe that unmade beds, piles of bricks, and elephant dung are great art. Nevertheless I know that those such as myself would be dismissed as philistines by the great and the good of the art world, whose livelihoods depend on offering positive comments on such nonsense.

The same affectations infest the world of opera. My wife has worked both for the ENO and the ROH, and we have attended performances at both houses, in Vienna, Prague, even Glyndebourne, seeing such iconic performers as Domingo, Carreras, Pavarotti and Kaufman live, as they appeared in great operas by those composers such as Verdi, Puccini and Wagner. However we have also endured, and in fact walked out of, insults to the paying public perpetrated by arrogant directors, who think that their insane concepts add to the performances, rather than ruining them. Beds halfway up the wall, scenes set on the M25, conductors accessing the orchestra pit by climbing over the dividing wall, and at least one Glyndebourne production which I can only describe as repulsive. Once again the so called experts wax lyrical over these aberrations, brushing off those who point out that the ‘King Has No Clothes’ as vulgarians, who are incapable of understanding the real value of such offerings.

The point of all this is that the sort of people who help to inflict these perversions of art upon us are part of that wider intelligentsia who think themselves so superior, not realising that the reaction of many normal earthy types is ‘you’re having a laugh’. Common-sense is a good guide to detecting what is no more than a confidence trick. Unfortunately for the country this elite does not limit itself to matters of taste, but also hold antithetical views to those held by the majority on such matters as patriotism, even democracy. They have become accustomed to their opinions on cultural and political issues being treated as holy writ, so were astounded when the vote on Brexit went against them. It is my hope that the fact that so many ordinary people having gradually had their eyes opened to the malign influence of these self important and opinionated snobs will cause their removal from sensible public debate. Their have enjoyed many years of receiving approbation, but their arrogance may now lead to their downfall. After all nemesis follows hubris.

  541 Hits

Woke versus Bloke

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For most of our history the ruling class was variously referred to as the nobility, or the aristocracy, selected by birth, not merit. Although lacking what we would call self awareness, or any concern for the views of the ordinary people (actually peasantry), it was normally, although not always, patriotic, and, particularly in the early days, quite prepared to enforce its will by clumping a mace around the head of any dissenters. This somewhat basic method of control was later replaced by less violent, although similarly uncompromising means of enforcing obedience.

Eventually the people decided that they had had enough of this, embraced democracy, and the old aristocracy lost power, although they usually retained their titles, and wealth. Our American cousins went further, and rejected the entire shebang, replacing the old constitutional system with a written constitution.

However, as is the way with such things (really everything), nature abhors a vacuum, and things did not go as hoped, and a new ruling class developed, not as thuggish as the old barons, but, for those who love liberty, equally abhorrent. In the USA the reliance on a legal document gave rise to a pestilence of lawyers, who now dominant much of American life, replacing common-sense with the sort of quibbles comparable to Saint Thomas Aquinas apocryphal questioning of how many angels can dance on the head of a pin, while in the UK we have replaced Lords and Ladies with a layer of parasitic, condescending, arrogant, pretentious, narcissistic, know-it-alls (I am sure other adjectives could be added as required). These people know each other, generally go to the same universities to study the same fashionable, some would say, poncy, subjects, migrate to the top positions in all fields of life, largely by appointing their mates to them, and have only contempt for ordinary people who reject their stupid ideas. They lack patriotism, regarding those who love their country as deluded imbeciles. Even as I write this I can hear, from where my wife is watching the BBC downstairs, an interview with some superannuated ex Ambassador or the like, who is deriding the idea of a new Royal yacht, describing it as outmoded, old fashioned, and jingoistic. This is just the sort of person who hate the Last Night of the Proms. Those who can watch the band of the Royal marines play the Queen on board without feeling a swell of pride in Britain have no soul. It goes without saying, but I will say it anyway, that almost all such people are Remainers, or Rejoiners, as they now like to be known. I have a different name for them but I will forbear to utter it.

Unfortunately in recent years these people have become acolytes of the extreme politically correct philosophy which goes under the name of ‘woke’. For a long time I disliked the articles written by Julie Birchall, but somewhere along the line she seems to have had a Road to Damascus, and now writes almost nothing but good sense. She recently coined the phrase ‘Woke versus Bloke’, which I believe sums up the division we now see in our society, provided of course that we are good little supporters of gender fluidity, and include females as blokes, much as we now seem to include them under the general heading guys.

Norman Tebbitt produced his famous cricket test, but a have a more pertinent proposal. Once football crowds are back to normal I suggest that we select one hundred at random from a combination of the Den (Millwall), and the Shed (Chelsea), and ask them to vote upon the basic tenets of the woke movement.

I might be wrong but I suspect that, when asked if they would give up their affordable cars, and heated homes, because the child saint Greta tells them to, or take a knee as an apology for their ethnicity, due to the actions of a foreign police force, the answer would be a resounding No. If expected to restrict their language so as not to offend some vanishingly small sexual minority, using only gender free conveniences, I imagine the response would be in the negative, as Sir Humphrey might have said. They probably would not even have heard of the high priestesses of woke such as that queen of condescension the Guardian’s Polly Toynbee, or the homosexual group Stonewall’s Nancy Kelley, although they will in all likelihood know of the patroniser-in-chief Dianne Abbott, but let us say I doubt that these ladies would be at the top of the list for the next dinner party they throw.

In particular I doubt that the ordinary working person realises just how much of the taxes they pay goes towards the obscene salaries paid to the wokists (crazy name, even crazier people) who infest so much of public life. While workers may get up at unearthly hours to drive trains, staff hospitals or respond to emergencies, often for very poor wages, this army of parasites rake in enormous salaries for sitting in nice offices, producing directives and policies, written in impenetrable bureaucratese. The diversity consultants, human resource advisors and vociferous, paid climate change obsessives, rely upon the nonsense promoted by the politically correct to feather their own nests.

The absolute rubbish being inflicted upon us would be laughable, were it not also so serious, as it is exacerbating divides in society, which were not previously significant, costing the economy billions, and undermining future hopes for prosperity, as they put their absurd philosophy above any other consideration.

It is hard to see how this tide of gibberish can be reversed, given that these drones and leeches have inveigled themselves into so many areas of influence. It is not possible to overthrow this new ruling class in the manner previous autocrats have been disposed of, as we do not have the equivalent of marching from Paris to Versailles, or storming the Bastille, when the despots now are an oligarchy, rather than a few identifiable, albeit royal, individuals. However we must do so if we are to have a bearable future. This should be the aim of all decent people who believe in democracy, and the battle can be won, just as we won freedom from the bureaucrats of Brussels.

  519 Hits

Shut up and stop nagging us

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Recently I bought a new car which came with all the contemporary bells and whistles concerning safety. However it nags so badly that, had it been a wife in the middle ages, it would have been a candidate for the ducking stool. It is petulant to the point that, unless I confirm every time I turn it on that I accept responsibility for driving, it won’t let me access the radio. I know that without being told, as I didn’t think it was the cat.

I can turn off most of the inconsequential complaints, but unfortunately that is not the case when it comes to the barrage of whingeing daily afflicting us from the combination of busybodies, scaremongers and politically correct fanatics, many of whom would have been willing Stasi informants in the old days of the GDR. They call themselves liberals, and spend their time virtue signalling, but in reality they are either stupid, or malign, or both. There are so many fields in which we encounter these imbeciles, whether it be sexual politics, historical facts, race or merely in our choice of words, or thoughts.

I am tired of those of us who are heterosexual being treated as giving offence if saying that we find the opposite sex attractive, while vanishingly small minorities are permitted to dominate debate. In many organisations these latter have succeeded in forcing the abolition of single sex toilets, completely against the wishes of women, although thankfully the government has declared that his process will not be permitted in public buildings. Those of us who have faith have been attacked for daring to say that marriage is between a man and a woman, while insane claims of there being over one hundred genders are allowed to pass unchallenged by a pusillanimous media.

Those such as myself who regard Winston Churchill as the greatest ever Englishman, and look upon our history with pride, are treated as being some sort of closet supporters of slavery, and while much is made of the reprehensible involvement of Western nations in the latter, no credit is given to the Royal Navy, which lost thousands of men driving the trade off the high seas. It seems to have passed these activists by that slavery has been a feature of human society for thousands of years, that its practice was never restricted to just white races, or that no one today with any intelligence would defend it.

The mere fact of being Caucasian is regarded as being a crime, and we must all be patronised by so called training in unconscious bias, again thankfully now rejected by the government. This is not to say that I would ever be deliberately unkind, or rude, to anyone because of their race, sex etc. as such behaviour is not part of my makeup, or of that of the vast majority of ordinary people.

The imposition of the left liberal version of Newspeak is intended to limit our use of our own language, and to regulate our thoughts, to accord with the wishes of these pseudo fascists, as if using the English language we have known for our whole lives is meant to indicate some hidden antipathy towards others. The lunatics of the environmental movement are seeking to deprive us of our cars, of our heated homes and of so many of the things that our forefathers spent so much effort to create, in the name of an unproven theory, supported for the most part by idiots whose scientific credentials are non existent.

I am not going to limit my use of language, apologise for my race or sexual preference, cease to express my love of Britain and her history, forgo the simple pleasure of driving the family to the coast, sit in a freezing house, nor ‘take the knee’ to a Marxist organisation because of the deplorable behaviour of a foreign police force, however much these various activists may complain. The late, great, Tony Hancock had the perfect answer when confronted by similar cretins, which was ‘Get Knotted”, while Sid James would have bopped them one. I trust any left liberal reading the last sentence will realise that it is intended humorously, not as an incentive to violence, but as they seem to lack any sense of humour one has to spell it out for them!

It is time we fought back against these extremists. On truism attributed to Churchill among others is that “a fanatic is one who can’t change his mind and won’t change the subject”, which describes so many of those bossing us about these days. When told that, in relation to some inoffensive remark, “you can’t say that”, we should respond “I can, and I will”, while the demand that we police ourselves concerning our innermost thoughts should be dismissed with contempt. Just tell these boneheaded nitwits to shut up. Finally leave the morons of social media to shout at each other, and lead our lives as adults, not the infantilised victims of arrogant know it all bigots. Those of us who have spent years on the football terraces can respond to those trolls who think that they can win by abusing opponents by replying in kind, without backing down like pathetic snowflakes. Perhaps not the course of action recommended in “Debrett's New Guide to Etiquette and Modern Manners”, but much more effective. Stop nagging us!

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An historic opportunity

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Looking at the contemporary disposition of the main parties in the USA it may seem incredible to those who know little of the history of American politics that, at the time of the Civil War, the Republicans were the dominant section of the radical party led by Lincoln, while the Congress of the Confederate States was dominated by former Democratic politicians. However we may now be seeing a similar reversal in position in the UK, opening up an historic opportunity for the Conservative party.

The result of the Hartlepool by-election, indicates that we are moving in the direction of the Conservatives becoming the party which actually supports the interests of the working class, while Labour joins the other left wing parties in only speaking for the metropolitan liberal, pro EU elite. By doing so it is following a road which could result in its oblivion as a serious political force.

It is unsurprising that the massively Leave supporting working class electorate in Teesside, who have endured decades of neglect by London politicians, should reject a party that had the arrogance to choose a pro EU candidate, at a time when the Conservative government is also actively taking steps to bring jobs and economic prosperity to the area.

Coming from a working class home, and born under Attlee as Prime Minister, I was raised reading the Daily Mirror, and, as a youngster, knew that the majority of my community regarded the Conservatives as the party of the privileged, and prosperous, while Labour was speaking for the ordinary people.

However the party of Attlee was very different to that which claims to be its descendent, the latter having rejected the kind of policies which ordinary working class people supported, and still support. I believe that grammar schools, introduced by Attlee when he implemented the 1944 Education Act, provided a means for any bright child, regardless of background, to climb the educational ladder, while it was his government that first created the independent nuclear deterrent, something I believe necessary for our safety. After centuries of persecution, and in particular the Holocaust, I think it only right that the Jewish people should have their own state, itself established with Labour support under Attlee. It was also the latter, later followed by another great Labour figure Hugh Gaitskill, who rejected involvement with what later evolved into the European Union. These policies make clear that so much of what the current left would no doubt describe as Tory, was in fact enacted, or at least endorsed by the most successful Labour government in history.

The Conservative party of those days was still very much one which favoured the interests of the moneyed few, while lacking an understanding that the ordinary person was instinctively patriotic, and wanted to possess the respect due to those who made a living through work, not state handouts. However Boris, despite his background as an old Etonian, and graduate of Oxford, seems to understand, and encourage, the aspirations of the working class in a way that the alleged egalitarians of the metropolitan elitists who dominate Labour dismiss with contempt, while nevertheless claiming to represent the underprivileged.

The main risk to the Conservatives is that the education system, both in schools and universities, is dominated by the liberal left, with the result that youngsters are being brainwashed into supporting the policies of the latter, while the BBC can be relied upon to present a totally biased view, favouring such ideas. The current influence being exercised by the so called ‘woke’, including the extremist agenda of the environmentalists, also presents a danger to common-sense policies, although the fact that the Green candidate only gained just over one per cent of the vote in Hartlepool makes clear that ordinary people do not support the ridiculous demands made by these obsessives.

The latter is one area where Boris needs to rethink policy, as conceivably there is not actually a sustained change in climate, but merely a variation, such as have occurred in historic times, for instance the Medieval Climatic Anomaly, followed by the Little Ice Age. Maybe there is a more long term change, but it could have nothing to do with homo sapiens, but be the result of subtle variations in the Sun's output, while perhaps there is indeed an effect resulting from our activities. If the latter is true then we need to do what we as a species has always done, adapt, but not to react in a way with a cure which is worse than the disease.

This does not mean that it is not a good idea to take measures to reduce our dependency on fossil fuels, as these are finite on a human timescale, whereas energy from the Sun, tides and wind are only vulnerable on a geological timeframe. However this can be done over a sensible period, taking advantage of technological advances, without throwing the baby out with bathwater, as we can make huge changes over the coming decades which will put our industrial civilisation on a more permanent basis.

It is regrettable that governments, including our own, have shown themselves willing to take the alarmist statements of the green lobby at face value, when the latter would only be satisfied if we were all back in the caves, rubbing sticks together for warmth, as they falsely regard humanity of being guilty of a disregard for the environment for purely selfish reasons. Many, although not all, are in fact beholden to the usual self hating ideologies of the Left.

Boris has chosen excellent people to implement policy, with Priti Patel speaking for those who, in imitation of the Mikado, wish punishments to fit the crime, while Rishi Sunak is a popular and effective Chancellor, and Dominic Raab a good Foreign Secretary. It is also clear that the ethnic makeup of the Cabinet makes it impossible for the left to credibly claim that this Conservative government is in anyway racially biased. Those who arrogantly describe themselves as ‘one nation’ Conservatives, are in fact just the sort of complacent, hubristic elitists certain to lose the support of those Boris has now gained for the party.

If the party holds its nerve, and does not revert to its old position of merely representing the well off, it can secure its place as the governing party for many years to come. It is an historic opportunity, which may never come again.

  528 Hits

The End of the Enlightenment

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The destructive results of the religious wars of the 17th Century led to the rise of the Enlightenment of the following century, which sought to make logic and reason central to human thought, replacing the ideas driven by emotion, encouraging the ideals of toleration, liberty, progress and the removal of religious domination of the state. Undoubtedly the movement’s concepts were significant in inspiring the the eruptions of the American and French revolutions, although eventually it was the latter that caused its demise, due to the chaos engendered. Nevertheless enlightenment ideals continued to influence Western society, particularly those of the Anglo-Saxon powers.

The relationship between emotion and reason is fundamental to how human beings behave. If we were robots, or like Star Trek’s Mr Spock, we would totally lack empathy with others, yet if we allowed emotion to be our only guide, the passions, and a refusal to use reason, would return us to the bigotry of previous ages. Clearly, as in most things, a compromise is required, and this was recognised in Ephesians, which states “We are saved through faith. The mind and heart must both be engaged in this process because to have faith in God, we must believe and trust God. Believing requires the mind, but to trust someone requires the heart”.

For many years we have arranged our affairs in the belief that that reason is more important than emotion, even though, in his novel “Podrostok” the author Dostoevsky put forward the theory that, in the final analysis, human beings do not change their beliefs because of intellectual argument, but because they have first become emotionally convinced of the truth of the proposition. I am sure that this is true, as it is obvious that superior arguments alone rarely change peoples minds, but nevertheless, until recently, it has been possible to debate and discuss issues in a reasonable manner.

Now we have reached a point in the cultural wars afflicting us where mob mentality, given new life by the curse of social media, is creating a situation in which no rational debate can take place, as those involved in the various so called protest movements will admit of no possibility that their opponents might have a point, and they will never be satisfied unless every jot and tittle of their demands are met. The fanatical environmentalists worship their child saint Greta, while their violent followers in Extinction Rebellion make clear that their belief in their self proclaimed sincerity, and their absolute certainty that they are right, justifies any outrage.

On a different front the extremists of Black Lives Matter declare that they have the right to rewrite history, destroying artefacts, books, and the reputations of every one they can tar with the brush of supposed racism, while at the same time harbouring the virus of anti Semitism in their midst. The historic wrong of slavery cannot be expunged by refusing to accept that the past is the past, or that only a lunatic would support it in today’s world.

The utterly absurd gender wars are so imbecilic that any objective observer must conclude that the so called progressive Left has gone completely mad. Even the radicals of the feminist movement are in the firing line, for objecting to hairy great men being allowed to compete with women in sporting contests, or to be sent to female prisons, where the other inmates are then subjected to sexual assault by these “self identified” women.

The deranged intellectuals of the liberal left are attempting to outdo Orwell’s worst nightmares as they try to corrupt and distort our language to reflect the supposed truths of which they claim to be the guardians, a lie which the universities, and too many major institutions, are only too willing to support. It is sickening to see so many charities, and commercial organisations, jumping on this bandwagon, attempting to dictate what language their employees must use.

If these lunatics had lived before the Enlightenment they would have been the religious fundamentalists who tortured and burned others in the name of a religion of love, and they are now comparable to those who promote terrorism in the name of a different faith.

If they are not stopped we shall see the real end of the Enlightenment, and of the return of the mentality which inspired Matthew Hopkins and his witch-finders, while free speech and democratic government will become a distant, and ultimately suppressed, memory. The question now is “Who is going to stop them?”.

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The decline and fall of the BBC

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The BBC, first national broadcaster in the world, and founded almost a century ago, once was respected, and indeed loved, acting as the voice of the nation in even the darkest times. How is it then that it is now reviled, and distrusted by so many, to the extent that its survival is under threat?

Lord Reith, appointed as first Director General in 1927, remains the most famous of those to hold that post, not least because he established the principles by which the organisation was expected to abide, including an equal consideration of all viewpoints, probity, universality and a commitment to public service. He stated that his goal was to broadcast, "All that is best in every department of human knowledge, endeavour and achievement. The preservation of a high moral tone is obviously of paramount importance”.

In the great days of radio the BBC reined supreme, never more than during the Second World War, when it, together with Churchill, provided the voice of defiance to the Nazi barbarians, and brought hope to those throughout the world who were suffering under the fascists. The World Service was established in 1932, and broadcast in many languages. Many of the programmes such as “The Brains Trust”, treated listeners as intelligent, with experts answering questions from the public in an unbiased manner.

After the war the emphasis began to shift to TV, where presenters such as Sylvia Peters, and McDonald Hobley, provide its public face, and many of radio’s most successful programmes found a new home. I still remember watching the coronation in black and white on our old Pye set. In the decades that followed competing channels, the arrival of colour television, and social developments changed the BBC in many ways, but it was still regarded as a trustworthy source of information, as well as a producer of excellent programmes, including many comedies such as “Dad’s Army”, “Fawlty Towers”, “Till death us do part” and “It ain’t half hot Mum”. These were very popular, and it was obvious to anyone of intelligence that, when they included characters expressing bigoted views, the intention was to ridicule the latter, not promote them. Satire such as “That was the week that was” was aimed basically at the political establishment.

What a contrast is presented by the modern BBC. Although it still produces some excellent programmes, such as nature documentaries, it has, quite unnecessarily, reduced standards to meet the lowest common denominator, as it seeks to compete with the output of the commercial channels. Given that it is guaranteed its income via the licence fee, it is not obliged to chase ratings, yet so much of what it broadcasts fails to provide quality programmes to improve knowledge, and understanding of the world. Apart from “University Challenge” the quiz shows seemed targeted at the products of modern education, who, through no fault of their own, are being failed by a system which insists everyone must have prizes. This is all part of the BBC’s stated ambition to appeal to youngsters, quite ignoring the fact that the demographic profile of the nation points to a gradually ageing population, while the young are anyway just not interested in public service broadcasting.

However the greatest scandal, and one which undermines the whole original ethos of the BBC, is the way in which it has abandoned any idea of being unbiased, and champions the views of the metropolitan, left liberal elite. It declared some years ago that it would not allow those who question the whole concept of anthropological climate change to air their opinions as “the science is settled”, despite the fact that this is not true. It even encourages comparisons with holocaust deniers, an insult to decent people who refuse to accept a fashionable idea just because it is fashionable. However undoubtedly the most egregious example of this bias has been the manner in which Brexit has been treated. The entire organisation seems to be staffed with those who proved to be in the national minority, yet it took, and still takes, every opportunity to air pro EU views, while attempting to depict Brexiteers as right wing, bigoted, nationalists. One only had to see the expression on the faces of the presenters as the result of the referendum became clear to know exactly where their sympathies lay.

The bias shown extends to all those issues which are becoming increasingly contentious, such as race and gender, with virtue signalling spokesmen for the radical left being given preference over those who reject the claims of these bigots. The very unfunny comedies now broadcast are predicated on the premise that to attack those who oppose rule by Brussels, together with the Royal family, deserve mockery, while the BBC disowns the superior shows from the past, seeking to attribute malign motives, even to gentle comedies such as “Dad’s Army”.

Where previously satire was directed at the powerful, now the targets are ordinary people who happen to disagree with the lunatic views of the radical left. Programmes such as “Today” can be relied upon to present a totally slanted view of issues, calling upon the usual suspects to offer their views, while censoring those who actually speak for the majority. The choice of those to review the newspapers is usually heavily weighted to those who quote from the “Guardian”, or the “Observer”, ignoring the fact that these papers are read by a small minority. I remember Frederick Forsyth being dropped from “a point of view” because his opinions gave the BBC lefties a fit of the vapours. Even the tone of voice used by presenters is a guide to their biases as they convey incredulity that anyone might hold views different to the accepted consensus among the liberals. A prime example of this kind of arrogance was the treatment meted out to an MP who happened to have the union flag in his room, as if supporting one’s own country was a sign of stupidity or worse. It is also obvious that the audiences for “Any Questions” are drawn from basically one side of the political spectrum.

One could go on and on about the reality, but nothing will change unless action is taken to cleanse the Augean stables of the BBC. This should be part of the fightback against the so called “woke”, who are destroying this country. That the national broadcaster should have fallen victim to these people is a disgrace, and the decline and fall of such a British icon is a tragedy.

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Reaction to report on race - Morality, or hypocrisy?

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The reaction to the report by the Commission on Race and Ethnic Disparities proves, if proof was needed, that those who have dominated debate on race in this country for many years are not driven by morality, as they pretend, but by a left wing ideology which hates our society, and by the desire to ensure that their access to lucrative consultative fees, book deals, and profits from running absurd training courses continues unabated. The latter, encouraged by politicised HR departments, and permitted by pusillanimous managers afraid of ‘giving offence’, have been responsible for countless blameless employees being obliged to attend classes where they are expected to offer mea culpas for opinions and actions of which they are entirely innocent.

These courses are nothing more than the product of left wing propaganda, sowing discord when none previously existed. The underlying assumptions that only white people are racist, and that all white people are racist, albeit many subconsciously, is itself racist, and an insult to the vast majority of people in these islands, many of whom have been cowed by political correctness into granting credence to these false beliefs. When I was forced to attend one of these travesties I recall being the only person to raise my hand when asked if anyone of those present, who were all white, had not discriminated against others on the grounds of race. The others attending were too frightened to reject presumed guilt, but as a lifelong trade unionist, and reader at my church, I refused to be intimidated.

Of course the people who run these courses claim that to say one is innocent is proof of unconscious guilt, a proposition that the Stalinist and Maoist self criticism meetings used to condemn innocent people, and is worthy of Orwell’s 1984. The government has concluded that these courses have cost taxpayers thousands of pounds when used on civil servants, for no useful purpose, and have accordingly banned them in bodies under their control.

The manner in which our universities have largely been taken over by hard left academics ensures that the only acceptable view is a parody of Orwell’s sheep in Animal Farm, chanting ‘White bad, non white good’, so students who do not subscribe to this philosophy are marginalised, and treated as guilty of racism. Unfortunately our young people have been so brainwashed by the Marxists who have infiltrated our educational institutions, aided and abetted by those such as the disgrace which still calls itself the ‘British’ Broadcasting Corporation, that they accept these lies.

The membership of the Commission on Race and Ethnic Disparities is approximately ninety per cent non white, yet the political activists who have responded treat the report as if it were some sort of statement by the Ku Klux Klan. The Runnymede Trust, called it a “gross offence” to grieving families of ethnic minorities who have died of Covid, as if the virus has been somehow directed to infect the latter in preference to the white community, while Black Lives Matter, said that it was “perplexed” by the report’s methodology, and “disappointed” by oversight of police racism. This latter organisation seems to have less concern for anti Semitism in its ranks, so obviously for them some people are more equal than others. The usual suspects, when interviewed by their fellow travellers in the BBC spoke as if the people who produced the report were merely government dupes, whose efforts could just be dismissed.

The reality is that of course racism exists in the UK, as it does in Japan, China, Russia, the USA, and indeed around the world. However it is neither institutionalised, nor structural, but rather the result of individual prejudices. To judge anyone by the colour of their skin is unkind, deplorable and just plain wrong. Indeed, as those of us who follow Christ know, he said “Judge not, that ye be not judged”, a principle which everyone might consider following. The point is that in this country it is not acceptable to allow personal prejudice to affect employment, housing, or the manner in which one is treated by the organs of government, such as the police.

There is no doubt that when activists of any sort demand public enquiries, or government reports, on any subject, they have already determined what result they expect, so, if those involved dare to find against them, woe betide them as they may expect to be subjected to abuse. It is utterly pointless to ask experts to give of their time if they are to be bullied into agreeing with whatever the extremists desire. Undoubtedly, if at some stage an enquiry is held into the handling of the Covid pandemic the loudest voices will be demanding that the government be condemned for failures, whatever the truth may be, and however much hindsight is allowed to take precedence over reason.

Those keen to rubbish the report on race in the UK should be wary. Although there are morons around who hate people merely because of the category into which they fall, the majority of Britons are mostly easy going, and consider fairness to be a virtue. If however perfectly innocent people find themselves constantly demonised on the basis of their being white they will react with anger. The result will not be better race relations, but a polarisation in society. Of course this is precisely what the Marxists want, as they continue to believe that causing social upheaval will give them the opportunity to gain power, before instituting their socialist nirvana. It seems to pass them by that this never works, and that all they end up with are rightwing regimes which crush them, but that’s what you get when you insist on following the ideas of foolishly idealistic nineteenth century intellectuals, instead of genuinely seeking a better world.

We have come a long way since the dark days when minorities were indeed discriminated against as a matter of course, and it would be a tragedy if we allow the politically motivated divisiveness promulgated by the hypocrites of the acolytes of extremism to win.

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Law, and disorder

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It is claimed that two thousand years ago a Roman citizen could walk across the known world free of the fear of attack, protected only by the words ‘Civis Romanus Sum’ translated as ‘I am a Roman citizen’, as all understood that the Roman state would punish any who harmed its citizens with unfailing retribution.

Of course one should not use the Romans as a model of how to behave, as they were notoriously hypocritical, in that they called their opponents barbarians, while they themselves maimed, blinded, castrated and enslaved populations who tried to defy them, committed genocide in Gaul, and elsewhere, and applied bestial punishments such as crucifixion and burning. The one lesson one can draw from the their claimed success in enforcing their laws is that deterrence works, not always, and everywhere, but generally.

The idea that the punishment should fit the crime, as espoused by Gilbert and Sullivan’s Mikado, receives little support from modern criminologists, yet is largely supported by the victims, who see pathetically soft penal policies enabling vicious felons to escape any sort of meaningful justice. I am old enough to remember when criminals would, before setting out some nefarious enterprise, search each other for deadly weapons, as they knew that, should one of their number kill, they would all hang.

Thanks to the dominance of liberal ideas over recent decades we now live in a society where murders, rapists and violent thugs have been given punishments which neither deter, nor represent any sort of justified retribution, ignoring the pain of those who suffered at their hands. Politicians of all parties are guilty of perpetuating this state of affairs, claiming the moral high ground by expressing concern for the human rights of the offenders, while ignoring those of their victims, and of those who will suffer in the future. My sympathies, and I have no doubt those of the vast majority of ordinary people, lie with the baby girl murdered, or starved to death, by those who should be taking care of her, the woman attacked and raped when walking down the street, the spouse who suffers domestic abuse, the youngsters stabbed to death near their homes by those who carry knives as a macho statement, the people assaulted because of the colour of their skin and every innocent who deserves the protection of the law, but sees lawyers, psychiatrists and the like doing all they can to excuse the thugs, and prevent them receiving the punishments they richly deserve.

Having left the EU we could reinstate capital punishment for murder, while the absurd policy of releasing offenders when they have completed half of their sentences should be ended. Rather then reductions due to good behaviour, if inmates are guilty of bad behaviour the sentences should be increased, although no doubt so called progressives would have a fit of the vapours at the thought. These latter always claim that execution is not a deterrent, a ridiculous assertion, but even were it to be true, it is also a justified retribution for the heinous crime committed.

Now we are faced with a further failure in the enforcement of justice in that the police force is increasingly falling under the sway of those who clearly see their function as running a Thought Police, rather than a body whose aim is to deal with real crime. Senior officers encourage the persecution of people who are doing no more than exercise their right to free speech, characterising expressions of opinion as ‘hate’ crimes, while pandering to paranoid, and politically motivated, enemies of democracy, who take constantly offence where none is intended. There is no justification for encouraging those who seek to inflame any sort of hatred against minorities, but such incidents now form a small part of the cases raised by those whom seek to suppress free speech.

Two principles which are totally ignored by the high priests of political correctness are that allegations are proof of nothing, while one is innocent until proven guilty. A former police officer, is taking Humberside Police to court over reported 'hate incidents’, as he was previously told by Humberside Police that he had been reported for hate speech because of tweets that were anonymously reported as 'offensive' and 'transphobic'. Despite being told he had committed no crime, a policeman told him he needed "to check your thinking". His record now clearly states that he has committed a 'non-crime' 'hate incident'. The problem is, if something is perceived as hateful, it is recorded as hateful. No evidence is needed. There is nothing you can do to change its status, and it remains on your record permanently. 1984’s O’Brien would be proud!

I have known many police officers, both personally, and in my time playing for my various sports clubs, at golf, tennis, squash or latterly bowls against their teams, and I also know how many are disgusted by the way in which the force has been politicised, its objective no longer being to fight real crime. The ordinary courageous policemen, and women, daily put their lives on the line to deal with the Marxist mobs of Stop the War, Extinction Rebellion, BLM etc., while facing criminals carrying guns, who are no longer afraid to use them. They are being betrayed by the liberal leaders now dominating the force. The days when every policeman had to perform a spell of beat duty, and were not required to pursue academic qualifications, rather than learn on the job, have gone, and politically trained automatons are preferred to real coppers.

In a letter published in the national press in 2018 one ex policeman reported “I served in the Met in the Seventies, and would report for night duty at Kings Cross. As well as constables in panda cars, a van to collect the drunks, an area car for emergency calls, and pursuits, officers would be assigned a beat to patrol on foot. If a break-in or damage was reported the next day from your beat, you had a lot of explaining to do. No wonder the crime rate is soaring with no coppers on the streets looking for crime, instead of waiting for it to happen. Where’s our thin blue line gone?”.

We want officers visible on our streets, not sitting in front of computers pursuing those who dare to hold a different opinion to metropolitan elitists. I remember when bobbies would stop cyclists riding on pavements, as well as panda cars stopping those with non functioning car exhausts. As was discovered in New York, if decent behaviour is enforced in even small things, beneficial effects will be felt throughout society.

When the state tells the people that they cannot respond to attacks, but must leave it to the organs of the law, then it is in effect agreeing to a contract that the state will take effective action against the lawbreakers itself. If it constantly refuses to do so then it is hardly surprising that people hold it in contempt. Respect for the law is essential if it is to be obeyed.

It is well past time for soft laws, inadequate sentences, politicised police, slippery lawyers and appeasing politicians to be consigned to the dustbin of history.

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The price of peace

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On a Rhine cruise some years ago my wife and I visited the beautiful town of Heidelberg and, while touring the castle, were informed of an interesting historical fact that contains a lesson for today's so called liberals and progressives. In the seventeenth century one of the Electors anticipated war and built strong fortifications. No one attacked. His successor discounted the possibility of war, weakened the defences and, unsurprisingly, saw the castle overwhelmed.

This is proof of the truth of the statement found in Latin author Publius Flavius Vegetius Renatus's tract “De Re Militari” (4th or 5th century AD), where he says “Igitur qui desiderat pacem, praeparet bellum” which translates as “Therefore let him who desires peace prepare for war.". This adage is generally better known as “Si vis pacem, para bellum” or "If you want peace, prepare for war”, and indeed it is the motto of the Royal Navy, the Norwegian Military Academy, part of the US Marine Corps, and numerous other military organisations throughout the world. This is not because of any bellicose desire to fight wars, but because military men are well aware that the best way to avoid conflict is to be prepared in the event it should come, and to be able to counter, and deter aggressive moves by one’s enemy before these escalate to the level of actual warfare.

In would be unfair to characterise the people of the UK, and before that of England, as being warmongers, but, over the centuries, we have proved ourself no shrinking violets, having fought against more other nations than any other country, a result of being one of the world’s oldest nation states, the creation of the Empire, and the desire to preserve the balance of power in Europe.

However we have at times failed to give sufficient priority to the Armed Forces, most obviously in the inter war years of the 20th Century, when we failed to maintain an adequate military in the face of the growing threat from Germany, as the politicians sought to appease the fundamentally unappeasable. Thanks to the still overwhelming strength of the Royal Navy, the bravery of the Air Force, and the mighty allies brought to our side by the imbecilic decisions of a paranoid megalomaniac, we survived.

Despite escaping from destruction by the skin of our teeth, the post war years show that both politicians, and ordinary people, have, in many cases, not learned the lesson. When we were confronted by a totalitarian power, implacably opposed to our way of life, and possessing nuclear weapons, the reaction of those such as CND was to support disposing of our stocks unilaterally. Obviously many were fellow travellers, who wished to see Communism triumphant, but others adopted the stance of the ostrich, burying their heads in the sand, and apparently hoping the Soviets would just go away.

The reality proved to be that nuclear weapons, seemingly capable of annihilating the opponent in a single decisive blow, were never used, and eventually our enemies collapsed, thanks to the inability of their economic system to match that of the West. The reason they never resorted to using their H-bombs was that any ensuing victory would have been pyrrhic, thanks to the certainty of mutually assured destruction. CND could not have been more wrong.

How many times in recent years have we seen defence reviews, while claiming to to create a leaner, but meaner military, actually being based on saving money, while relying on the power of the USA to ensure that her allies would not fall before a common enemy. Not only is this dishonest, it is so short sighted as to be contemptuously cretinous.

The latest review appears, no doubt until all details become clear, to offer a more sensible programme than that proposed by previous governments. The good parts involve the greater use of AI and drones, more warships and submarines, and an expansion in the number of nuclear warheads held. Air power, if promises are kept, will remain significant, and the pivot to the Pacific is obviously rational as China grows more threatening. Cyber defences grow ever more necessary, so creation of the National Cyber Force, RAF Space Command and an artificial intelligence agency are all positives, particularly as the danger from terrorists always remains.

However the proposals for the Army are alarming. Less tanks, insufficient field artillery, and, above all, another reduction in the number of troops, would make the Kaiser, if he were still alive, repeat his remarks about a contemptible little army. Our soldiers are among the finest in the world, but there comes a point where there are too few to be more than a token force. Clearly our historic role has been that of a naval power, since augmented by the air, but if we are to neglect the army then even more must be allocated to the former. More aircraft carriers, frigates, and even destroyers, should be built in British shipyards, while the air force should be expanded.

None of this comes cheap, but the first responsibility of a government must be the protection of its citizens, and there is no point in having a marvellous social and health infrastructure if it can be easily destroyed by those who hate us.

Perhaps in the long term one of the most important changes which could be made would be to attempt to restore the sense of service to the nation which plays so little part in contemporary culture. We have the Army, Navy and Air Force reserves, but they could contribute more to our potential strength if they were treated with the respect they deserve, and not subject to the sneers of the metropolitan elitists, who dominate organisations such as the BBC.

No rational person wants conflict but, if you want peace, prepare for war!

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A Call to Arms

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Fifty years ago it would have been easy for those of us who opposed involving the UK in the European project to have just shrugged our shoulders, sat back and done nothing to convert our opposition into an actual active movement, as the signs seemed to be that that we were in a small minority, and that the direction of travel was only one way, leading to our country becoming just a province in a single European state.

However, and despite the years when we endured nothing but abuse, and were ignored by the media, we persevered, and, in the end, succeeded, as the UK is now free of rule from Brussels, and we are no longer on the fringes, but are in the mainstream of political life.

Now we in this country, and indeed in the West as a whole, particularly in the USA, face an enemy which, if unchallenged, will destroy all we hold dear. In 1929 Ernest Hemingway’s novel ‘A Farewell to Arms’ was published, and now we need ‘A Call to Arms’, to defeat those who are presently distorting our society, rewriting our history, corrupting our language, and demonising great numbers of people in the name of an insane ‘woke’ ideology.

According to the acolytes of this movement I, as a man, must obviously be, at the least, a misogynist, although possibly also a latent rapist. As a heterosexual I clearly I must be a homophobe, while, as an adult, I am a potential paedophile. That I am white means that I am a conscious, or unconscious racist, while my patriotic beliefs imply that I support colonialism, and my opposition to rewriting history makes me a probable supporter of slavery.

In reality I am none of these things, being a lifelong trade unionist, and a practising Christian, but, in the twisted minds of these fanatics, anyone who dares to contradict these assertions is merely denying a guilt which they refuse to recognize. For them it is a case of ‘damned if you do, and damned if you don’t’.

In the past the majority of the population would just have laughed at these lunatics, and told them to get a life, but now they have so wormed their way into so many of our institutions that perfectly decent, respectable people find themselves not merely accused of these crimes, but found guilty and punished by the loss of job, or reputation, or even of liberty, while the right to free speech is being totally undermined by an increasingly control of our words, and soon of our thoughts.

Although the main enemy to be confronted are the high priests of political correctness, much blame for allowing to emerge from under their stones attaches to pusillanimous politicians, bureaucrats, employers and media commentators who are so afraid of being accused of giving offence, or worse, that they choose to ‘take a knee’ and bow down before their accusers, instead of defying them.

We watch with horror as those in charge of universities allow student unions, far left academics and ideological zealots to force the ‘no platforming’ of those whose views these bigots oppose. Companies listen to extremists shouting on social media, and change the names of their products, or apologise for their advertising campaigns, while forcing their employees to attend nonsensical diversity courses, which the government now recognizes as absurd travesties. The BBC is so thoroughly infiltrated by the militants that it bans programmes which it once broadcast, while it introduces quotas for employees based on criteria which bear no relation to merit or ability.

The educational establishment is so beholden to this nonsense that it needs a root and branch reform, with a massive cleansing of its stables, the Marxist dons being removed, and the student unions being prevented from interfering in academic freedom. The undergraduates are there to learn, not to enforce their distorted prejudices upon the universities. If they don’t like it, let them leave, and try living in the real world for a change.

All those laws passed at the behest of the perpetually offended should be repealed, while the police should be told to concentrate on real crimes, not pursuing innocent people for saying what they believe. When police forces can state that giving offence is a criminal offence, a total lie, then there is really something rotten in the state of Denmark. The fundamental principle of innocent until proved guilty is being ignore by over eager policemen, something they share with church authorities, who presume guilt when priests are accused.

The fanatics targeting others are possessed of a ferocity shown by the puritan witch-finders, or the Dominicans of the Spanish Inquisition, although without the supposed underlying religious motive. Nevertheless they are consumed with self righteousness, and, as their persecution of the innocent has led to suicides, enjoy their own version of the auto de fé.

It is not enough for the ordinary people to merely ignore what is going on, in the hope that it will eventually just fade away. These enemies of democracy have the bit between their teeth, and if not confronted, and defeated, will succeed in permanently demolishing our society. There is no hope that the parties of the Left will take any action, as they are totally in support of the objectives of these dogmatic extremists, so it is the responsibility of the Conservative party to take them on. If they will not do so then we need a movement to rally to the standard of sanity before it is too late. ’A Call to Arms’ indeed.

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It is time social media was reined in

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The organisation for which I worked in those far off, halcyon days of the early 1960s, received many letters from the general public, which included those from the small, but energetic and lunatic, section of society. These were usually written in green ink, the pages being put to full use by writing up and down the margins, the spelling being frequently incorrect, the grammar questionable, and the opinions contained therein inevitably mad. They were placed in what was referred to as the ‘loony’ file, skimming through which provided an occasional diversion on a slow Friday afternoon. Meanwhile, as I worked in central London, lunchtime walks would regularly lead to encounters with unbalanced types standing on street corners prophesying the immediate end of the world, or some such. Basically these people were pretty harmless, as they were so clearly deranged as to be not worth anyone’s attention.

One of the major drawbacks of the Internet is the way in which it has given this section of society free rein to inflict their imbecilic, usually vile, and almost always ignorant, opinions on the rest of us. They sit in their bedrooms, typing away behind the protection of anonymity, attacking everyone they like, causing untold misery to their targets, and debasing debate on the most serious of subjects.

Recently we have seen reports of disgusting postings aimed at Captain Sir Tom Moore, the Duke of Edinburgh, even the Queen, while the abuse heaped on those who dare to support Brexit or Donald Trump, or to oppose the rise of the cancel culture, is unbelievable, or would have been before Facebook, Twitter and the rest opened the door to these morons. Sometimes the results of the unfettered ability of such lowlifes to abuse can be tragic. One case of which I am aware is the manner in which the priest (a good and pious man) of our local church was so abused concerning unproven accusations of misconduct that he eventually committed suicide, having been left to swing in the wind by church authorities who lacked the courage to stand by the precept of innocent until proven guilty. Even after his death the contemptible people who has hounded him continued to post foul accusations, to the distress of his mother.

The dangerous phenomenon of the cancel culture, with the subsequent distortion of the education system, as we see brainless students refusing to listen to anyone except those with whom they agree, is a product of the way in which the opinions of these armchair warriors have been granted a credibility which they do not deserve.

However this tide of abuse could easily driven back with two simple actions, namely the removal of the right to anonymity, and a determined effort by the media, and the general public to laugh at the stupidity on show, and to treat it as something to be ignored, not repeated. The press and TV constantly reports on so called ‘Twitter’ storms, but what exactly are these in reality. The actual number of those involved is small compared to the population, who either does not feel constrained to take part, or, more usually, never access social media anyway. Just because a vociferous group of idiots get together to shout about something is no reason to pay any more attention to them than one would to the street crazies of the past.

A requirement that anyone posting on the social media platforms must be clearly identified, with their real name, and location shown on the screen, while insisting that the technical details relating to them, and held by the platforms, are freely accessible to law enforcement, so that libel action may easily be taken against them, would soon bring most of them to heel.

The media should cease to take the lazy option of printing details of the latest ‘trending’ subject on social media, and return to their proper task of researching, and reporting genuine news, insisting that opinion not be reported as fact, and interviewing those involved, not merely quoting from some pathetic posting by pathetic idiots.

Over the years I have had hundreds of letters published in the press, and have exchanged what might be described as lively opinions with those such as unilateralists and Remainers. However I have always gone by the principle of ‘sticks and stones’, while the newspapers themselves ensure that libellous statements are not permitted, given that they have publishing responsibilities.

It is scandalous that the big Internet companies such as Facebook are allowed to escape from such publishing responsibilities on the basis that they are only in effect noticeboards, and not publishers. To change this would soon prevent many of the excesses we see now.

Above all the vast majority of computer users should restrict themselves to using social media for benign reasons, and not take part in prolonged exchanges with those who lack either the brains or knowledge to discuss anything important. There are many of us who have never used Facebook, Instagram, Twitter etc. and the world would be a better place if everyone followed our example.

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The betrayal of British higher education

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In the half century since my generation were of an age to go to college the whole experience of university education has changed almost beyond recognition, and not for the better.
That this should be so was inevitable once governments decided that it would be advantageous to send ever increasing numbers of youngsters to university. In 1960 only four percent of school leavers went up, by the end of the 1970s this has risen to fourteen percent, and now it hovers around the fifty percent. It is unbelievable that anyone in their right mind can claim that such increases do not lead inexorably to a decline in standards, yet many contend it to be so. Of course this deterioration has been concealed by the intellectual abilities required being less demanding, so courses are accessible to those who in the past would not have been accepted. In 1970 one third of graduates obtained a first class degree, yet now that figure has risen to two thirds, among a much less rigorously selected population. One result is that those who fifty years ago achieved a perfectly respectable 2:2 now find that employers are liable to treat such a qualification with contempt, as large number of current graduates are being given firsts or 2:1 degrees, which they would not have gained in the past.
As now nearly two and a half million are in tertiary education one effect is that the number of universities has also increased massively. Given the varying definitions of such institutions in official figures it is difficult to be certain of the exact change, but it is certainly enormous, the upgrading of polytechnics to university status being responsible for much of the increase. Institutions which once performed a sterling task in preparing youngsters for vocational careers now emphasise supposed academic achievement, even when many employers prefer the former.
The financial implications for those attending universities now are such that anyone from ordinary working class backgrounds needs to think very carefully as to whether the game is worth the candle. Whereas once a grant was available, so that graduates could leave college with perhaps only a small overdraft, today’s youngsters are being burdened with debts as high as £50,000.  In addition it is a disgrace, that the universities are lowering entrance standards, or using pseudo economic excuses to permit entry to those who do not match up to the educational requirements, as it subjects the youngsters involved to a struggle beyond their capabilities.  A massive confidence trick is being practised upon them, as they have been led to believe that the enormous debts they are incurring in order to obtain their degree will be repaid by the value the latter will have in providing a decent career. While this may be true for those such as scientists, doctors, engineers and lawyers, it is absolutely false in the case of so many of the pretentious, and trivial, qualifications which universities now offer. The elitist arrogance of the educational establishment has led to the replacement of the apprenticeships, work experience and training, day release, and evening classes, which were of use to the nation, with useless arts degrees in meaningless subjects. As a consequence employers now ask for degrees as an entry requirement for positions which in the past were filled by school leavers, to no one's benefit other than the universities.
Beyond all these considerations of standards and financial commitments there is another elephant in the room. Bodies of higher education should be one of the greatest assets a country can possess but, over the past few decades, we in the West have seen them mutate into organisations which, while absorbing vast amounts of public money, have become hotbeds of political correctness, and the source of that elitism which treats the wishes of the people with contempt, seeking to suppress all views which do not accord with the deeply held prejudices of the educational establishment.
Previously one of the primary functions of a university education was to enable youngsters to encounter a wide spectrum of views, broadening their mind, so that they would be capable of debating issues, while respecting the fact that points of view other than their own are worthy of consideration. Now we find the universities, often yielding to pressure from students, allowing such nonsenses as safe spaces, trigger warnings and no platforming to limit debate, deny the opportunity for those who do not subscribe the narrow set of left liberal, and often Marxist, opinions held by the high priests of political correctness, to present their views, and even to permit changes to the names of colleges, and consider the removal of statues linked to those historical personalities of university life who had connections to matters of which they disapprove. 
That a feminist icon such as Germaine Greer could be prevented from addressing a meeting, or the ludicrous idea that any book, however one might disagree with its position, should be withheld, in case the poor little snowflakes would be upset by it, are a disgrace to bodies whose lecturers would, in the past, acted as devil's advocates, in order to stimulate thought and discussion. Such censorship is the first step on the slippery slope to the book burning of the Nazi thugs. The City University student union even banned the Daily Mail, Sun and Daily Express, papers read by millions, from shops on its grounds. They do the youngsters no favours as, in the real world, they will find that, while people will disagree and argue, for the most part they attack the other's views, not their right to hold them, and would be both astonished and angered by such a contention. In this they would agree with Voltaire who wrote ‘think for yourselves, and allow others the privilege to do so, too’.
The utter hypocrisy of all this supposed concern for correct behaviour is shown by the anti Semitism so often encountered, when leading academic and student figures attack Israel, call a particular university a Zionist outpost, and indeed allow blatant anti Semitic positions to be adopted by their spokespersons without protest. These people were just the sort whom Orwell knew only too well, and who are doing their best to establish a Thought Police in this country. One only has to look at how they wish to override the wishes of parents concerning their children's welfare, encouraging the latter to feel doubts about their sexual identity, at a time when they should be innocent of such matters, and trying to enforce the views of the more extreme campaigners by use of the law.
While those such as scientists, mathematicians, physicists and doctors are intelligent, those who study the arts like to think of themselves as intellectuals and, as Clement Attlee said ‘Never listen to intellectuals, they are always wrong’. We could usefully close a great many of the current universities, return the old polytechnics back to their old status, radically prune the arts subjects on offer, and replace the ideologues with lecturers who value education above their political beliefs.
  690 Hits

Scientific illiteracy

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Over the years I have frequently run quizzes for organisations of which I am a member, and am as frequently appalled by the lack of knowledge so many people seem to possess relating to scientific matters. As my career has been in IT I am not a scientist, but I think I have a reasonable grounding in what I would regard as basic facts about the world. However the responses I have received indicate that a majority of people have no idea about the age of our planet, its distance from our star, what its likely future is, or the extent to which we as a species have, or indeed can, affect its nature.

Nevertheless, despite this widespread ignorance of the facts, a large number of activists, backed by a gullible media, and a political class afraid to contradict fashionable opinions, are convincing our societies to take steps which risk undermining our economies, and reducing our quality of life in order to counter what, contrary to claims made by vociferous pressure groups, are uncertain theories about our climate. Those who are so certain in their belief that anthropological global warming is a reality, proved by scientists, should look at what the consensus of the scientific community was only a few decades, when the warnings were all of rapid cooling, and a new ice age.

There are fashions in scientific opinion, and these are exacerbated by the desire to obtain research grants, not to rock the boat, and to enjoy fifteen minutes of fame. I could give numerous examples, but two illustrate the point. In 1971 the journal Science published a paper by two eminent scientists which said "An increase by only a factor of four in global aerosol background concentration may be sufficient to reduce the surface temperature by as much as 3.5 degrees Kelvin, sufficient to trigger an ice age". In 1973 the Science Digest carried the following warning "At this point the world's climatologists are agreed on only two things. That we do not have tens of thousands of years to prepare for the next ice age, and that how carefully we monitor our atmospheric pollution will have direct bearing on the arrival and nature of this weather crisis. The sooner Man confronts these facts, the safer he'll be". The one thing which is undeniable about our climate is that we live in an interglacial, which could end at any moment.

One of the most repeated assertions come under the general heading of ‘saving the planet’, This is risible, given that the Earth needs no saving, as it has existed for approximately four billion years, and barring a massively unlikely event such a close encounter with a wandering dark star, will continue to exist for another four billion, until the Sun finally leaves the main sequence. That its climate varies, sometimes massively is not disputed, as it was once a spinning tropical ball, was a frozen snowball for millions of years, and, being a dynamic body, has experienced many climatic events, such as Ice Ages. These latter are generally thought to be caused by variations in the Earth’s axis tilt, in the planet’s orbit, and in the output of the Sun. Other large swings in climate can be due to vast volcanic eruptions, or even the relative positions of land and sea masses, with consequent effects on oceanic currents, and wind patterns.

Despite these realities we are asked to believe that the activities of a small biped, over a couple of centuries, are threatening the existence of life on Earth. The constant claims about the malign effects of carbon dioxide ignore the fact that the most prolific greenhouse gas is water vapour, and how do the green fanatics expect to do anything about that - turn off the Sun?

The reality is that there are several plausible scenarios. Conceivably there is not actually a sustained change in climate, but merely a variation, such as have occurred in historic times, for instance the Medieval Climatic Anomaly, followed by the Little Ice Age. Maybe there is a more long term change, but it could have nothing to do with homo sapiens, but be the result of subtle variations in the Sun’s output, while perhaps there is indeed an effect resulting from our activities. If the latter is true then we need to do what we as a species has always done, adapt, but not to react in a way with a cure which is worse than the disease.

None of the above means that it is not a good idea to take measures to reduce our dependency on fossil fuels, as these are finite on a human timescale, whereas energy from the Sun, tides and wind are only vulnerable on a geological timeframe. However this can be done over a sensible period, taking advantage of technological advances, without throwing the baby out with bathwater, as we can make huge changes over the coming decades which will put our industrial civilisation on a more permanent basis.

It is regrettable that governments, including our own, have shown themselves willing to take the alarmist statements of the green lobby at face value, when the latter would only be satisfied if we were all back in the caves, rubbing sticks together for warmth, as they falsely regard humanity of being guilty of a disregard for the environment for purely selfish reasons. Many, although not all, are in fact beholden to the usual self hating ideologies of the left.

The proposal that we should abandon petrol driven cars, and domestic gas ovens, for electric models within an absurdly short period is not merely impossible to achieve, but fundamentally insane, as, given the Greens outright opposition to nuclear energy generated by fission, where will the necessary electricity to come from but from the use of fossil fuels? In the future we may hope that fusion power, and the ability to capture massive additional energy from the Sun by use of orbiting power stations, will provide what we need, but these technologies are not yet ready.

Rather than treat little Scandinavian girls as some sort of mediaeval child saint, we need to adopt the attitude exemplified by the Queen of reacting rationally to problems, and, to use a wartime slogan, “Keep Calm”.

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We must be mad

As is well known, in the police state of Nazi Germany, the regime used the SS and Gestapo to control the population, but these bodies were backed up by the Blockleiters, who were in charge of listening to gossip, keeping an eye on neighbours, and informing on anything suspicious in a block of flats, or a group of houses.

In the German Democratic Republic the Stasi network of Informal Collaborators covered all sections of the population, providing crucial support to the country's elaborate surveillance system, and made possible the monitoring of groups to which a secret policeman could never have gained more direct access, notably in artistic and church circles, so that the state was informed in particular detail about individuals defined as "enemy-negative persons”.

Parsons, a character in Orwell’s dystopian novel 1984, professes to love Big Brother, but he is heard by his daughter to say in his sleep "Down with Big Brother." She turns him in to the Thought Police, and Winston Smith encounters him in the Ministry of Love before he is executed.

Of course such nightmares could never take place in our liberal society, where free speech is regarded as a given, and private conversations, or idle gossip, could never be used against individuals could they? Unfortunately it is becoming increasingly likely.

It is reported that the Law Commission has abandoned proposals to extend hate crime legislation into private homes, laws which could have meant that dinner table conversations could have led to hosts or guests being investigated by police, and possibly sent to prison. We are now told that the commissioners are looking at alternative ways to achieve something similar. If this review is not thrown out, lock, stock and barrel, supposed hate crimes will anyway to be extended to cover gender and age.

These proposals may have been abandoned, but it is a disgrace that they should even have been considered for one moment. Do not forget that these presumed offences can arise just because a person says they have been offended, ignoring the fact they such offence was never intended, or that the words used would not qualify as offensive to anyone except the paranoid.

That this kind of review should be taking place would be a disgrace at any time, but it is almost unbelievable that it should be happening under a Conservative government. Can anyone doubt that, should any of the parties of the left achieve power in the future, such ideas would not resurface?

Everywhere we look the lunacy emanating from the ‘woke’ is disfiguring our country. Teenage pupils at Seaford Head School in East Sussex have forced the removal the names of Winston Churchill, and the author J K Rowling, from their houses, because the latter’s statements about the ‘trans’ community were unacceptable to these snowflakes, while the British hero is accused of having ‘unfairly imprisoned and tortured many, a flat out lie. Clearly the school does not teach history.

The Brighton and Sussex University Hospital NHS Trust is telling its staff to stop using terms such as ‘mother, ‘breast’ or ‘woman’ so that, where one might have said that “the child’s mother is breastfeeding her baby with breastmilk” it would be necessary to say ‘the maternal, or paternal, person is chest feeding the baby with chest milk”. Newspeak lives! That this insanity is greeted with incredulity by any reasonable person means nothing to those being allowed to ride roughshod over the views of ordinary people in the name of a deranged ideology. They must be stopped if this country is to be prevented from falling into a purgatory where rational behaviour, and belief, has been abolished.

In 1953 the novel “Fahrenheit 451” by Ray Bradbury was published, concerning a future society where books are outlawed, and burnt, in order to suppress dissenting ideas, and the actual book burning by the Nazis is a matter of historical record. We have not yet reached that point, but can anyone doubt that the imbeciles who have been attacking statues will not soon turn their attention to books. One can foresee the works of Churchill being banned in libraries run by left wing councils, or even their publication being prevented on the grounds they they will encourage patriotism, or pride in our country’s history and achievements.

We in the UK are mad to have allowed the politically correct fascists to get as far as they have, and it is time that the overwhelmingly majority of decent citizens turned on these so called activists. They will never be satisfied until every person obeys their diktats without question, and the simplest of pillow talk between married couples becomes subject to examination by the state, with sanctions applied to those who dare to stray from the line dictated by this real life Thought Police.

  587 Hits

Democracy in peril

Although the break with the EU is not yet as complete as many of us would wish we have nevertheless escaped at last from the grip of Brussels, and have ended the situation whereby our democratic rights were being destroyed, as the rulers of that vile organisation transferred move and more authority into the hands of unelected bureaucrats. However the future of our democracy is still at risk, and not just because the behaviour of those who stormed the Washington Capitol was reprehensible, as was the apparent prompting given by President Trump.

That event was the result both of the unbridled opportunities extremists have been afforded by the existence of social media, and an underlying malaise which is compromising the survival of Western democracies. In the past few years we have seen multiple examples of egregious assaults upon democratic decisions, which have been largely due to actions taken by those now hypocritically expressing outrage about the storming of the Capitol.

When Trump won in 2016, the Democrats tried to delegitimise his victory in the electoral college because Hillary Clinton won the popular vote, despite the fact that this had been the agreed method of electing a President since the Republic was formed, while these same people also made totally unsubstantiated claims about foreign interference affecting the result. This latter accusation was also made when the nationalists failed to convince the Scottish people to vote for independence in 2014, and was again employed when the Europhiles turned out to be in a minority in the UK in the June 2016 referendum.

Of course that vote resulted in the worst example of the refusal to accept a democratic decision yet seen, when the political establishment, and its supporters in the media, such as the BBC, declined to accept that they had been fairly defeated. For years we endured flagrant attempts to overturn the will of the people, with a Commons Speaker who blatantly assisted the Europhiles, and a campaign to hold a second referendum before the result of the first had been implemented. The insults directed at Leavers were disgusting, and made clear that the pro EU case was largely founded on prejudice, much of it class based. The 2019 general election demonstrated that the British people were serious in their desire to leave the EU, but once again they were subjected to a barrage of false claims, rather than an acceptance by the Europhiles that they were in a minority.

Those of us who know the works of Orwell, particularly his masterpiece 1984, must sometimes feel that he possessed a time machine, for so many of the horrors portrayed in that novel are now recognisable around us. He seems, as Paul says in Corinthians, to “have seen through a glass, darkly”. What is the concept of a ‘cancel culture’ other than the modern version of making someone an ‘unperson’, while the advocates of so called ‘woke’, are creating a version of Newspeak, where the use of words is being deliberately limited to prevent us from expressing our opinions.

As we do not yet have a Ministry of Love to enforce the diktats of these sinister enemies of freedom it is nauseating to see the number of organisations who choose to ‘take a knee’ before them, issuing apologies for which no apology is warranted, and persecuting those who dare to stand up to these fascists. It should also be remembered that the violence in Washington followed on from that seen during the demonstrations by the anti Semitic Black Lives Matter movement, which seeks to impose the views of a minority without any democratic process taking place. Of course it is wrong, indeed insane, to treat people differently because of the colour of their skin, but the genuine grievances which minorities have cannot be solved by supporting those who hate Jews, capitalism, and even the concept of the family. These thugs should be confronted, not appeased.

If any reasonable person, voicing rational opinions, is told that ‘you can’t say that’, then the answer should, and must be ‘I can and I will’, while the craven behaviour of so many businesses, who tremble at the thought that they might be offending those whose capacity for taking offence is infinite, should cease to conciliate, and instead defy these vociferous simpletons.

The attacks upon democracy have been fuelled by the manner in which social media has been used to promulgate nonsensical assertions, and the ability of irrational mobs on these platforms to silence all but the most determined, who face abuse emanating from those who think that any who shout the loudest should prevail. There is a good case for banning these aberrant modern day soapboxes altogether, as they are now sewers which the worst ignoramuses are using to destroy rational debate.

As far as the wider question of democracy is concerned, if losers refuse to accept the result of democratic votes it cannot survive, as every election or referendum will see attempts to use illegitimate means to reverse the decisions taken.

  553 Hits

Naivety

Students of human nature need look no further than Shakespeare to find warnings of the perils of judging that the motives of others are benign. In Julius Caesar Octavius rightly points out that "And some that smile have in their hearts, I fear, Millions of mischiefs”, while Hamlet tells us that one may "smile, and smile, and be a villain”. The villains themselves admit as such when Iago says “I am not what I am”, and Richard III confesses that “And thus I clothe my naked villainy”.

The tendency to think well, rather than ill, of people is not doubt laudable, but all too often it is merely naive, and can lead to disaster. For individuals a trust in smooth talking snake oil salesmen on the Internet has led to thousands of decent people being tricked into losing often substantial funds, but it is when the problem is inflated to relations between nations that the real danger threatens.

In the 1930s quite sensible figures, including Leo Amery, a man of Jewish descent, were sufficiently naive to be at first taken in by Adolf Hitler, and of course the appeasers, such as Neville Chamberlain, believed that it was possible to reach an accommodation with Nazi Germany. That they could have believed this when the facts that the Nazis were dressing up as pantomime villains, crushing democracy, and persecuting the Jewish people is amazing. Had they taken Mein Kampf seriously they would surely have never trusted Germany for a moment. We were indeed fortunate that, by the skin of our teeth, we were eventually on the winning side, thanks to the Channel, the size of the Royal Navy, the bravery of the RAF, and insane decisions to attack the USSR and America, taken by a man who was a psychopathic megalomaniac.

Of course this ability to ignore what is staring you in the face was not, and is not, restricted to politicians. In the inter war years many apparently sane individuals were vociferous in their support for the League of Nations, but equally convinced that expenditure on our Armed Forces should be cut. One wonders how they could believe that mere moral exhortations could hold back the dictators. The signers of the Peace Pledge Union were, like most pacifists, unable to accept that sometimes one must use force, or at least threaten it, to survive. This sort of gullibility was on display in the years following the war when many marched for CND, in the belief that the way to deal with a totalitarian power, armed with nuclear weapons, was to throw ours away. Perhaps they thought that being well meaning was sufficient, but we all know with what the road to hell is paved.

Unfortunately this refusal to recognize that there is evil in the world persists, for, in the days following the fall of the Soviet Union, many bankers, financiers and investors eagerly took money from tainted sources in Russia, and in so doing spread corruption, and malign influences throughout the Western world. The recent excellent book Putin’s People, makes clear that current day Russia is not that of the Tsar and nobles of Imperial times, nor the Soviet era of Stalin and the Politburo, but that of the political equivalent of Michael Corleone and his capos, as Putin and his KGB cronies reign supreme. Many in the West took money from pure greed, but others claimed that it would ensure that Russia would become a respectable part of the world financial system. Well we have seen how misguided was that belief.

Now we have been repeating the same mistake with China. The latter has managed to combine the economic strength of capitalism with the continuation of the power structure of Communism, and we have allowed them to inveigle their way into our infrastructure, without warning infect the whole world with a virus, and begin to undermine democracy everywhere. They have treated the agreement over Hong Kong with contempt, menaced Taiwan, and made invalid claims on the whole Asian area, attempting to browbeat India, even trying to cow Australia. We have foolishly permitted the lure of cheap products to allow much of our industry to gravitate to China. Again the arguments are trotted out that if we engage with them they will gradually become more like us. This is either a conscious lie, or such a misreading of the nature of their regime that it amounts to an insane delusion.

It is time that Western democracies woke up to the fact that we are living in the light from the campfire, but just beyond its circle the monsters are getting closer. Under the Kim family North Korea is the nearest to the world of 1984 that we have yet seen, its people being powerless to overthrow the dictator. Theocratic Iran and the Islamist fanatics will never give up their desire to destroy Israel, and her allies, for, while we are told that their population is becoming younger, and more desirous to live as a Western style nation, still the Ayatollahs rule. The secret policemen who have taken over Russia have imperial ambitions, while a totalitarian China is growing in power and influence every day.

This is not to advocate active belligerence directed against our enemies, but we should recognize them as such, ensure that we possess Armed Forces capable of deterring them, cease to allow them unrestricted entry into our economies, and recognize the fact that, contrary to the beliefs of many well meaning ignoramuses, not everyone is like us. We in the Western world have had our dark periods, and are by no means perfect, but compared to so many of the regimes afflicting mankind, in the phrase popularised by Disraeli, we are on the side of the angels.

  577 Hits

The EU Mask Has Been Ripped Away

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 For years they were told that they were wrong, ignorant or xenophobes. They were excluded from power, and treated largely with contempt by the media. However, when the Second World War broke out the anti appeasers were totally vindicated, took over at the very top, and eventually saw the utter defeat of the barbarians running Nazi Germany. Al...
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  1426 Hits
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