Sunday, 12 November 2017

The unacceptable face of false patriotism

Armistice Day and Remembrance Sunday are acts of collective recollection and determination.  From 1919 onwards, they represent a communal congregation where the impact of war and destruction can be contemplated and addressed, without an overarching conformity and as part of creating an acceptance of the social and public space.  Their hijacking by a particular brand of narrow-minded bigots must therefore be resisted.

English nationalists do not accept any version of history that does not put their entitled and propagandist interpretation of the 20th century at the centre of it.  In the case of the First World War, millions were sacrificed on the front line in battles which, ultimately, achieved nothing but to pave the way for barbarous totalitarianism and an even more destructive conflict.  The myth that they put forward about the single-handed victory achieved by the plucky few in the Second World War is risible and wrong-headed - for the millions of victims, combatants, civilians and the displaced it is a hollow insult, who just happen to be airbrushed out of a political construct because they didn’t hold blue passports.

Partly this is a consequence of their reluctance to acknowledge anything other than a black-and-white view of the causes of war.  The Farages and Hannans of the 1930s were apologists for Hitler, and, as with their lies in the last decades, the record of anti-semitism, enthusiasm for fascism and collusion amongst the British aristocracy to appease and normalise authoritarianism is there, researched and stark.  Where the current rabble-rousers fail is in a blatant attempt to render any debate or knowledge an act of treachery.

It is axiomatic that people on all sides sacificed themselves, or were sacrificed, for causes that they either believed in or were coerced into supporting.  There were also those sucked into the insanity through no active desire of their own.  They are the people whose destruction and whose fate needs to be commemorated, and whose uncomprehending victimhood should be the centre of the Armistice narrative, not the gung-ho approach of the right and its fellow-travellers who regard the symbolism of the event as an excuse to vilify anyone who does not support their worldview or who dares to question evidence.  They don’t do irony - the war aims declared by the United States and the United Kingdom in 1941 were around freedom, democracy and self-determination.

Every year their ire is directed at people who don’t wear a poppy, for whatever reason.  Coercion, shaming and conformity - the very approach that they claim we remember the victms for opposing and defeating.  In their infantile abuse and their attempts at forcing collaboration they are becoming the enemy within that needs to be opposed and resisted - the freedom to contemplate and learn from the past is being corrupted by a cabal of Russian-funded rightists who are unable even to appreciate that the horrors of war draw people together and to work against its repetition.  I remember, and salute, those for whom defending ourselves against this kind of authoritarian onslaught was a noble calling.  I will not be told how to do it - nor should anyone else be.

Monday, 6 November 2017

A government of evil impotence

Looking for light relief at the moment is unrewarding.  The news that the MP for Tamworth, a Mr Pincher, is under internal Tory investigation and suspended from his role in the Whip’s office, would normally raise at least half an amused eyebrow, but the incompetent, treacherous farce that is the current maladministration is sliding rapidly into tragedy.  For a government to be so far out of control when the social and economic fabric is being systematically destroyed in the interests of unspecified oligarchs and fantasists is a breach of trust and obligation.

Over the weekend, the Tory spin machine was looking for damage limitation in preference to action.  A succession of seedy characters, such as the ridiculous “Sir” Roger Gale, were paraded in the media to suggest that the allegations of sexual abuse and depravity were all a “witch-hunt”.  What was most striking was that the apologists were all elderly right-wing males, protesting vehemently, while the alleged Prime Minister was apparently using Amber Rudd as a ventriloquist’s dummy, frightened of doing or saying anything herself that might upset the incompetents, fascists, perverts and traitors who are currently holding her hostage. 

For the real motivation behind the ratcheting-up of sleaze, there are three, cumulative reasons.  The first is obvious.  The disaster that is both the withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union and the haphazard, incompetent and duplicitous conduct of the negotiations associated with the process is now so glaringly apparent that even the raving fascists of the Daily Mail and the Daily Telegraph are printing at least some material that will give their mendacious editors and owners the excuse to say “I told you so” when the fan is obliterated by national manure.  Sleaze and sex both sell papers and divert attention from the consequences of the actions these traitors have been promoting for decades.  They cannot expect to escape this.

Second, the interference in the political process by covert forces is now becoming apparent to everyone who has despaired at irrationality and is now seeking an explanation if not a solution.  The evidence of Russian interference in the US Presidential Election last year, Brexit and the unfolding tragedy in Barcelona is now becoming not just compelling but hardening up.  In this climate, scepticism and distrust are sown.  Two years ago, to speculate that Tory backbenchers, pirouetting in an ungainly fashion from pro-Europe to rabid, incoherent exponents of racism, ignorance and contempt, were in thrall to another state, would have been seen as extreme tinfoil territory.  Now, with links from the Foreign Office downwards, and the purchase of astroturf through ignorant blowhards in the Taxpayer’s (sic} Alliance, it does not seem fanciful that the contempt shown for the concept of constitutional democracy is being maintained through blackmail of any or all persuasions.

Third, and the latest icing on the cake, is the further instalment of the Panama Papers.  It is unsurprising that the vast and dubious wealth of the British monarchy would not be untainted by the tax avoidance strategies of the plutocrats, but playing the Royal joker is a standard tactic of patriots who have been caught with their hands in the till. Sadly, this is another 1950s throwback that seems unlikely to play out well, as the obscene wealth and the apparent immunity of its owners from the consequences of their actions undermines any credibility that the monarchy is a unifying force - personal and grudging respect for the current incumbent does not preclude a revulsion at the fiscal pillage perpetrated behind a veneer of uncritical forelock-tugging.

This is a government of the venal, for the venal and rotten to the core.  They do not need to be succoured any longer, as their actions are not in the national interest and they appear to have no clue as to any further strategy beyond bribery and the promotion of further division.  Their ejection will be necessary but not sufficient to rescue the nations and their citizens from cupidity, greed, amorality and perversions of both sexual and political morality.  They have no authority, no mandate and no right to continue to undermine the state in the name of other paymasters.  It is time for them to recognise this, before the fates conspire for an even deeper tragedy.

Thursday, 26 October 2017

Tory Trots and the Corbyn conundrum

A few nights ago, I was lying in bed, contemplating Jeremy Corbyn.  In attempting to explain his seeming reluctance to provide a coherent position on the current disaster, preferring to provide a Tory-lite mantra of a "jobs-first Brexit" whenever the opportunity presents itself, the bizarre convergence with the Tory right suddenly provided insight into why Labour is squandering the opportunity to annihilate an administration of such weakness and incoherence that it contradicts itself often within the same soundbite.

To understand Corbyn and McDonnell's antecedents requires a knowledge of both economic history and the febrile sectarianism of left-wing politics in the 1980s.  Their roots are in the hard left that coalesced around the Alternative Economic Strategy - it formed the basis of the 1983 Labour manifesto, and defined the battle lines within the party that led both to the formation of the SDP and the undeserved Thatcherite hegemony.  Neither are legacies that have had a benign impact.

The Europhobia that has been embedded on the left goes back to before Britain's accession to the EEC in 1973 - it was only the actions of the democratic socialists in Labour that provided the Commons support for entry.  Many of the future hard left were ranged against the government and the Conservatives, including Thatcher, for the 1975 referendum that produced a far more decisive and clear result than the gerrymandered travesty now claimed as the popular will.  When Britain's inherited economic problems caused the infamous bail-out by the IMF in 1976, it provided a catalyst for the development of the hard-core AES, which had EEC withdrawal at its heart.

The AES was, in effect, the creation of a siege economy.  High tariffs, nationalisation and high taxation - isolated from both European and global trading.  This was dressed up as a means of protecting British jobs, in an era where there was still a manufacturing base and where the entire social and economic fabric was neither international nor reliant on the capital markets and bankers as a proxy for wealth creation.  It almost made sense in an era of simpler reality and British industries that could provide, albeit expensively, many of the capital and consumer goods required to sustain the basics of existence.

Its advocates ranged from Keynesians to Trotskyites, for reasons of their own.  It formed the basis of many of Momentum's precursor organisations' strategies for taking control of Labour, and was widely seen as one of the key drivers of Labour's defeat and failure to remain as a national force in the 1980s.  That is too simplistic an analysis, as it was the basis by which Blair allowed a neo-liberal economic policy to be embedded without due consideration.

What is more surprising is the extent to which the Brexit extremists in the "government" are adopting similar policies as part of their scorched-earth approach to their task of destroying the economy.  A "no deal" or World Trade Organisation position would have many of the impacts of the AES, but in the context of a country which is no longer able to fend for itself.  Davis, Fox and Johnson are much more their heirs of Tony Benn and Wynne Godley than most of the current Labour Party, including the declared party economic policies.  The Trotskyite saboteurs, wreckers and enemies of the state have embedded themselves in the government - bankrolled by plutocrats who have no interest in the success or failure of the peoples of the British nations.

Corbyn is a useful idiot, because he still believes in the autarkic project.  He needs to sharpen his antennae as it is unlikely that the consequential damage will do anything to accelerate his election.  In a world of Tory Trots, the real alternative strategy is to articulate why being an active part of the national, continental, and global systems is the only way in which delivering social equity, taking back control and unpicking the last forty years of over-marketisation will ever be delivered.

Tuesday, 24 October 2017

The cretins' progress - a cautionary tale of modern Conservatism

The Tories are a competitive bunch.  For the last thirty years at least their extremist fringe has been experimenting with normalising first the unacceptable and then all shades that move towards the downright fascist and totalitarian.  Were it not for the fact that Theresa May willingly took on the leadership of this amoral, mendacious and repugnant bunch of hypocritical self-seekers, it would be almost feasible to feel an atom of sympathy for her feeble, treacherous querulousness.

Whenever it appears that the position of paradigm moron has been rendered unassailable, new challengers emerge from the black-shirted closet.  When the incompetent languor of David Davis, the grandstanding egotism of Boris Johnson, the plain cretinism of Andrea Leadsom or the corrupt ineptitude of the disgraced former Defence Secretary Liam Fox are normal, there needs to be a special breed of poltroon to capture the imagination.

John Major's bastards remain a reliable source of cuckoo unreality.  Nigel Lawson lectures on the benefits of Brexit to economic migrants such as himself, a vapid, incompetent Chancellor who fled the country for warmer climes and wants to pull up the drawbridge.  John Redwood pulls out nuggets of such supreme ignorance that he is either in possession of some kind of satirical devil or has become so completely in thrall to his own fuckwittery that he does not worry about being revealed as the selfish liar that he is.  Most of the others are dead, which does at least raise the imminent prospect of toasting the demise of those still twitching.

There are the hard-core fruitcakes - the Peter Bones, the Michael Fabricants, the Nick Boles and the other semi-literate stains on Parliament, who are predictably vicious, naive and repulsive.  There are new challengers, the self-styled intellectuals such as Daniel Hannan who would be better off retiring to monasteries and repaying their debt to society.  At local level the hollowing-out of local government has left a residue of detritus that should be cleansed by the electorate - very few remaining Tories are not venal self-seekers whose attention to the public interest is principally expressed in antipathetic terms.

For a party which spent the best part of two centuries seeking power, this is a pretty poor state of affairs.  There are those within it who think that Jacob Rees-Mogg, a preposterous combination of grave-robbing undertaker and third-rate St Trinians spiv, is a future leader.  Whenever he opens his mouth it demonstrates that the purchase of privilege has been at the heart of the formerly United Kingdom's political problems for longer even than there has been a recognisable Conservative Party.

However, the ultimate piece of Tory revelation emerged when a Whip, the foul and hypocritical Chris Heaton-Harris, was revealed to have written to all university Vice-Chancellors attempting to launch a witch-hunt where academic study of the impact of the European fiasco was concerned - doubtless trying to tease out that the correlation between a rejection of the Brexit narrative and higher educational attainment remains intact.  For Chris Patten to describe this as "infantile Leninism" was remarkable - and the knowledge that this attitude is a precursor to the kind of destructive and immoral persecution perpetrated by McCarthy and Stalin (not to be confused with the purveyors of homes for the elderly and bewildered) has inflamed no more anger than it deserves.

The inconsistencies, delusions and lies that underpin the Brexit advocates will come back to haunt them.  There are honourable Tories yet who will decry the fate of their party - but the time is now running out for any chance of redeeming it without standing up to the idiots, bullies and foghorns both inside the Parliamentary cocoon and their echo chambers in the media.  Clarke and Heseltine are paradoxically more modern than the parody Whigs and grandees two generations below them, and their influence may need to create the climate for a centre-right party in the European mainstream.

The Tories have screwed themselves, and it does not behove the rest of us to sit by and allow them to destroy society and the economy.  They are corrupt usurpers, served with a side-dish of wilful ignorance.  Their contempt and incompetence grows - and it is now time for a concerted effort to draw attention that the venal and the corrupt are on notice to quit office or face the tumbrels.

Saturday, 7 October 2017

Fiddling while Britain burns

The Tory conference, a facsimile of Nuremberg for the over-70s, provided so many apposite metaphors for the treason they are inflicting that it would be tempting to run through them all.  A leader claiming a mandate that she does not possess, focusing on maintaining an impossible unity within her own party, and with a fractious bunch of right-wing egotists whose allegiance is at best questionable.  If this was happening in the opposition, the lapdogs would be all over proclaiming crises and unfitness to govern.  That May and her cabal of scrofulous charlatans are occupying governmental positions should be a cause for concern, anger and increasing disobedience.

Outwith the spluttering, incoherent and divided world of the Tories, this dominant image the world is presented with is of impotence and authoritarianism.  An atrocity committed in Las Vegas followed natural disaster, which demonstrated both the callousness and the inadequacy of the Trump administration.  In Catalonia, whatever the rights and wrongs of the independence referendum, the response of the Spanish state should send early warnings about the intentions of a Westminster faced with challenges that could break up the United Kingdom, especially the craven failure of the British Foreign Secretary to even express an opinion, let alone outrage.

Maintaining the current regime has become May's preoccupation.  She has never approached the role with any recognition that she is capable of differentiating between partisan bickering in her own party and the requirements of a leader with national pretensions.  Inadequate in all aspects, mental, political and moral, she is a prisoner of a far-right faction of lunatics and traitors who are maintaining her in her role not out of any loyalty but cold-blooded calculation that when the edifice totters over the edge the field will be left to them to act out some kind of neo-fascist fantasy.  The Johnsons, Rees-Moggs and their acolytes are quislings even to the Tories.

Six months ago, there was no need to hold a General Election.  The Tories lost.  So did Labour, despite the hubris and complacency that they demonstrated in Brighton.  The real losers were the country, faced with a spurious choice between parties incapable of addressing the reality that the path to an ill-defined, destructive disengagement from the European Union cannot be delivered on the terms that have been presented, nor with the benign consequences that the deluded cheerleaders expect.  Neither of the principal parties was prepared to challenge the assertion that the inchoate "will of the people" required a particularly vile neo-liberal dismantling of society, nor set out the consequences of no growth, inflation and the annihilation of international trade.  A failure of leadership compounded by the result.

Since the election, May has pursued a path that failed to recognise the reality of her plight.  Dealing with the far-right, terrorist fellow-travellers of the DUP, rather than attempting to build bridges with the centre and left, made it clear that there was nothing in her approach that recognised her responsibility to the nations.  That is seditious and treasonable, and in destroying the link between the Prime Minister's role and the national interest she has further undermined the spurious legitimacy of the unwritten constitution.  In the light of the kicking and screaming, grudging and ineffective refusal to accept the legitimacy and the sovereignty of Parliament, this is not a representative government but a conspiracy of usurpers.

Refusing even to engage with the wider community is symptomatic of an authoritarian dictatorship - May has much more in common with Kim Jong Un than possession of nuclear weapons and a pathological hatred of imaginary enemies.  In the context of negotiations with the EU, a responsible government would not merely prepare impact assessments but publish them across every sector and department affected by the discussions.  The argument put forward by the Tories is that this would compromise their negotiating - a lie and a feint that leads to two possible (and complementary) conclusions, firstly that the assessment is so bleak that a responsible government would pull back, and secondly that the quality and depth of the analysis is in keeping with the approach that the half-witted morons of Davis, Johnson and Fox have adopted in their role.

This is all distraction tactics, not the actions of a party either in government or even fit for it.  The false patriotism that even the alleged Tory modernisers exude is tiresome and hypocritical.  Alarm bells should be on permanently, given that the acceptable face of the Tories is seen to be Ruth Davidson, an inconsistent lackey who will adopt any political stance that might embarrass the SNP until told to U-turn by the centre, when she will claim a continuous policy approach.  If this is the face of future Toryism, it is smug, hypocritical and doomed.

May has no mandate and no authority.  Faced with rebellions and dissent Thatcher was ruthless, but then she had a gerrymandered majority in the Commons.  Instead, May is pathetic in her failure to assert herself even against a criminal self-styled buffoon whose relationship with Rupert Murdoch should be subject to much more scrutiny.  Johnson should have been sacked by now - he could have formed the focus of a right-wing cabal on the backbenches that might finally cause the few remaining voices of sanity in the Tory party to question their allegiances and promote loyalty to the nations' interests.

A party that was once pragmatic is now an extreme sect, and dominated by a particularly vile strand of English intolerance and hatred.  Even its few younger members are bitten by this misanthropic selfishness, which is, in the long-run, why it is doomed.  Each election strategy has been based around promoting division and distrust, sufficient to provide an electoral base - but as further groups are stigmatised and alienated, this becomes a liability rather than a triumph.  Evidence is that it is not merely the young who are losing any trust in this bunch of spivs, but that the hold is loosening across even their target groups.

May's one hope might have been to crystallise a leadership contest on her terms, much as Major faced down Redwood in 1995.  It may not have saved the Tories in the subsequent election, as they were irredeemable by that stage, but it did provide an assertion of leadership that mitigated the impact of popular disgust.  Now this option has disappeared up the orifices of vanity and delusion that propelled her into office, and she deserves the fate that awaits her.

If this was taking place in isolation, the Tory machinations would be both amusing and cathartic.  Yet this is a luxury that cannot be afforded in the context of the tragedy they preside over - destroying a country's future for partisan ends.  The best question of the week was how long can the purported "will of the people" be immutable, and there have been no answers to that.  As the negotiations unravel on the back of incompetence, arrogance and Russian-backed propaganda, there is no choice for the Tories but to pursue this idiocy at all costs, apparently.  They are unfit for office at best, criminally-insane in reality.

The opportunity for regaining control and direction is, paradoxically, closer than ever.  At some stage the vultures will pick over May's corpse, finding nothing more nutritious than gas and hypocrisy,  At this point the Tory fissures reopen - and at this point, there needs to be a clear, coherent appeal to those capable of reason that there is a chance to act in the interests of the wider community.  Labour's tactics appear to be to allow the Tory dance of death to unravel without criticism or intervention, which is a foolish abandonment of opposition.  It falls on the disenfranchised and under-represented to keep the opposition alive, and to articulate that there is no inevitability to UK immolation.  We are not going away, nor will there be much forgiveness of those who either directly destroyed the future or those whose passive connivance continues to support their delusions.  Revolt is impartial, and the reverberations are hideously unpredictable.

Friday, 15 September 2017

The new Nazis in the British asylum

Watching, rather than commenting, on the fascist takeover of the Tory party has been an attempt at preserving sanity in recent weeks.  Theresa May, a disgusting amalgam of Imelda Marcos, Adolf Hitler and the kind of suburban curtain-twitcher who should be burned in effigy on a regular basis, is not even prepared to defend the seditious coup that she has deemed necessary to implement what she, or her puppet-masters, define as the "will of the people".

As with Hitler, the power grab emerged after an election reverse.  The arrogance and hubris with which the Tories went into the campaign earlier in the year becomes more monstrous and hilarious with time; assuming that the divine right to govern would be bestowed upon the shower of criminals, traitors and ignoramuses that make up most of her Parliamentary conspirators was a miscalculation that she now regards as a minor inconvenience.  A Prime Minister that assumes that the response to a divisive election is to subvert representation is unfit to hold office.  She should be driven from it. 

To propose legislation that removes scrutiny, consolidates power in the hands of Ministers and which is then gerrymandered through a usurpation of the Standing Committee process is treasonable. If her Enabling Act is not thrown out or mangled through amendment, her administration becomes seditious.  No other representative or constitutional body in the formerly United Kingdom need feel bound by it, and should obstruct, impede and challenge what amounts to a fascist takeover.  This is not the action of a governing party, more a desperate junta afraid of the consequences of its actions.

The most salient point that has been made about the May seizure of power is that had this been carried out in reverse, for example by a Labour government, the very cheerleaders who try to face down all resistance as the work of saboteurs and wreckers would have been up in arms.  May knows that her ability to control and influence the situation is negligible, caused by her own inadequacy both personally and political, and that she has nothing to gain beyond personal vanity and discounts at fashion shops, while allowing the country to be sold out to interests who have no desire to be either accountable or identified.

This is the route to fascism.  We are now heading there faster than even the most pessimistic would have considered plausible.  Resisting and opposing are necessary now, but the time is coming where frustration and outright non-compliance may become the imperative - moving into the illegitimate norms that she seems content to inflict as part of her complete inability either to lead or to recognise the damage that her coterie and paymasters want to inflict. 

Tuesday, 25 July 2017

Kicking the Tories when they're down

Despite the venomous ectoplasm emanating from the disgraced, odious Liam Fox, the principal driver of objective media coverage of the Brexit treachery is the reality of its treacherous imbecility.  A government, seeking to lead and promote the national interest, would, after persistent economic damage and political humiliation, would, were it not composed of the inadequate, the treacherous and the criminal, be seeking both to change course and to explain and shape public opinion.

Instead, about the only spectacle that the sorry ordure that passes for government presents to us is that of venal infighting.  A Prime Minister, wounded by hubris, incompetence and the prospect of defenestration at a time not of her choosing, who cannot provide a definition of either the national interest or articulate how her administration is capable of delivering any policy, and who is personally responsible for much of the ugly English particularism that defines her government, should be on the ropes - being mercilessly hounded for her failings and fearing the wrath of the betrayed electorate rather than her own party.

From the moment that the grubby deal with the DUP was signed, in what passes for Tory blood, May has demonstrated neither respect for constitution or the national interest.  Blatant bribery, collusion with sectarian throwbacks and a rickety Parliamentary position should have pointed the way to an opposition breakthrough.  The rage and despair that the current suspended animation provokes is an invitation for political tacticians to peel off those Tories who are appalled by the right-wing, authoritarian drift of their own party, and who would be capable of defeating May on issues where even ten seconds' inductive reasoning would suggest that the national interest trumps partisan posturing.

Perhaps the lack of political memory and education is a problem.  From the rhetoric emanating from the Corbyn cheerleaders, they would appear to consider that "one more heave" is the only political strategy, and they would rather pursue sectarian battles with others opposed to the Tories than provide leadership and consensus.   This does not increase credibility, as the key function of opposition is to harry the government out of office - and, where there is no Commons majority, this is as important as maintaining and promoting their hatred for those in their own party and outside who do not share their particular road to salvation.

As Parliament is now taking its summer break, May does not consider her position to be vulnerable from that angle.  Far more concerned about the febrile, simmering atmosphere in her own vile bunch of chancers, she will be hoping that plotting will be unreported.  As the current Tory party resembles a bizarre conflation of a chimpanzee's tea party, the 1980s Albanian Communists and a sieve, this is about as likely as a coherent European negotiating strategy awaiting.  For each Tory saviour being promoted, be it Davies, Johnson, Fox, Leadsom or even Amber Rudd, the desperation is palpable, and the damage each would do could be exploited by an Opposition determined to seize the initiative.

For those coalescing around the need for opposition, there are tentative signs of encouragement.  The coherence of positions being set out by the Liberal Democrats, the SNP, Plaid Cymru and the Greens is such that their adoption does not need to be partisan.  In a time of national crisis there are Labour and Tory figures who could adopt these without blinking or the accusation of partisan betrayal.  There is no time for purity, or the constant mantric idiocy of berating the Liberal Democrats for their participation in Cameron's Coalition - which was a mistake, but which prevented much of the whole sorry, meretricious mess that we are now enduring.

The decline and fall of the UK is accelerating, and there is no good news on the horizon.  This should be the moment at which there is a clear push to name the guilty and prepare for a cold, hard reckoning of what needs to be done to restore sanity and promote the national interests.  Labour leaders are drifting into complicity with the Tories, and should calculate the risks - as frustrating the "will of the people" is a facile soundbite now, but collusion brings the risk of being the scapegoats when the Tories turn looking for someone to blame when the further reality hits home.

A summer of discontent and incompetence, leavened by national humiliation and a government sustained by bigotry, is hardly the picture that May painted for herself three months ago.  Time to keep up the pressure, and prepare to bring down the traitors.  Tumbrils and lampposts need to be on the agenda, at least metaphorically, to avoid the inevitable consequence of not taking action before the breakdown of economy, politics and society that the Tories appear to regard as acceptable collateral damage when holding onto illusory power.  Engage and destroy - the patriotic outcome.