Thursday, 28 December 2017

The unsightly unravelling of idiots

The Tories are ending 2017 where they began it, but without a majority.  It would have been a brave prediction that they would have called and lost a General Election a year ago, let alone that there are still people out there who regard Jeremy Corbyn as a herald of socialist purity rather than as a grubby Tory enabler.  Irony is lost on them - they pour scorn on reports that Nick Clegg is to receive a knighthood on the basis of his coalition collusion with Cameron, while taking umbrage at those of us who remind them that the Labour front bench has piroutted with Theresa May in the Brexit dance of death.

You do have to wonder whether the thirty pieces of silver extracted from May by the Klan in Northern Ireland were necessary, given the extent to which the Labour Party has connived in pursuing the alleged will of that section of the people permitted a vote in a 2016 advisory referendum.  The role of politicians should be to argue, to lead and to debate - not to pretend that their hands are tied behind their back.  Adults are able to take their responsibilities seriously, without constant reference to events that are increasingly looking like a subversion of even what passes for democracy at the UK national level.

May’s predicament gets worse - how many more Ministers can she lose?  The efforts to “draw a line” as each sleazy episode lurches to its unsavoury conclusion resemble the last days of the Major administration, except that the talent within the Conservative Party is now so abysmal that it would be difficult to conceive who else could possibly be promoted that won’t result in hyperventilation by the hard right whose agenda she pursues with a messianic insanity.  If the latent contradictions of the policy she is enabling do not emerge with massive force over the next six months then surprise will be a reasonable minimum.

All the evidence points to utter incompetence and imbecility on the part of politicians at Westminster, which will eventually come back to haunt them.  Without an executive branch either resourced or able to deliver the contradictory outcomes desired by the corrupt and the venal, the next stage of negotiations with Brussels and our erstwhile allies will result in humiliation - especially when being harried by the devolved nations and a united, non-partisan opposition outside Parliament.  This could be the salvation of Labour, but it appears to be completely oblivious that its enabling of national suicide will not result in sustained support.

The prospects are bleak, but evil usually sows its own destruction.  The cliches are out, but this may be the darkest hour before the realisation that a sovereign state can reverse its own mistakes.  Hopefully there will be enough intellect left when the traitors, enablers and colluders are deposed for there to be something better emerging from the wreckage.  That’s about as optimistic as one can get at the moment.

Friday, 22 December 2017

Blue passports for local people, sugar tits

The League of Gentlemen used to be black beyond one’s darkest comprehension.  In the current state of Britain its return felt akin to providing pointers as to the degeneration and pathetic posturings of a government in hock to a cabal of self-interested bigots and inadequates.  The icing on the cake was the culmination of the new series coinciding with the defenestration of Damian Green, confidant and mentor to a Prime Minister even now crawling to the Polish government, themselves facing censure and sanction for violating the rule of law.

Perverting the standards and conduct of public life appears to be vocational for the Tories.  We shouldn’t forget Anne Widdecombe and Michael Howard defending the shackling of pregnant mothers and refusing to take responsibility as the decision was “operational” not “policy”. From that moment on, even the relatively toothless Ministerial Code was devalued.  Given the intellectual calibre of May’s current maladministration, it would be unsurprising were the Cabinet Room not to have large, socialist realist posters emblazoned with “don’t get caught, but if you do, lie about it”, on each wall.  From council chamber, via the devolved nations, through to Westminster, every level of the party is contemptible and sleazy.

Green’s departure was lengthy and painful to behold.  Clearly May cannot afford to lose what passes for an ally in the collection of amoral inadequates that forms the Tory talent pool, although, had David Davis actually carried out his threat to depart in solidarity it might have been a price worth paying.

As we know, every time Davis opens his mouth he contradicts his previous utterances, which since they were lies to begin with seems to be a pattern of sociopathy that deserves treatment, isolated from the world.  Every lie diminishes him and the UK - from the risible “impact assessments” that appear to have been cobbled together by remedial GCSE students to his apparently loyalty to a colleague already known to have been involved in activities that in any other context would have resulted in dismissal.  That he remains in a senior position, presiding over a Department with a critical task that no sane civil servant would want to associate themselves with, is perfect testimony to May’s impotence and cupidity.

Meanwhile, Mark Garnier, an undistinguished Tory who would not normally have troubled the IQ or visibility scorecard, has been exonerated for calling a member of his staff “sugar tits”.  Whatever the casuistry, this demonstrates further that May’s hypocritical rhetoric on her accession about a liberalised society is complete hokum.  A Pharisee at best, a sock puppet for the reactionaries who want to turn the clock back to 1820 is a more likely analysis of her motivations and incentives.  It would be amusing were crowds to display “Hello Sugar Tits” banners every time she appears in public, not that this should ever be condoned as it would further demean the authority of government, which the Tories carry out with aplomb and without assistance.

As everyone from the IMF to the more sensible Parliamentarians recognises that the current course of UK government policy is pointless self-harm, the response of the Tories is to create beer and circuses.  As Jeremy Hunt, who is morally the equivalent of the vet in Royston Vasey in terms of his impact on patients, presides over an NHS starved of the funds that his cronies promised it, we get the idiot Brandon Lewis popping up to explain that the feelgood factor will be restored, even for Remainers, by the return of blue passports in 2019.

The far-right echo chamber of the print media will probably hail this as the culmination of forty years of struggle - as it distracts from the pathetic inability of the government to conduct its business in the national interest.  Having been advised by MPs of the laughable state of its assessment of the impacts of its immolation strategies, we could, in a rational world, expect Ministers to commission proper work in advance of any decision on the end state that they are seeking - instead of which we had two hours of posturing on Tuesday and ploughing on regardless.

The last twelve months have been surreal, but this may just be the beginning.  May is now locked into pursuing a policy that every rational being would regard as extremely risky, dangerous to social cohesion and downright immoral.  There is increasing evidence that the foundations upon which the entire “will of the people” trope has been based are weak and crumbling, and anyone with pretensions of leadership would be looking to chart a sensible course rather than steer straight into the whirlpool. Local laws for local people is both a lie and a delusion, but that is the only jibe that the Brexit fanatics appear to retain.  When the criminals and simpletons reign, the outcome is macabre.  From Royston Vasey to Maidenhead this is the essential message of Christmas 2018 in Little Britain.

Sunday, 17 December 2017

The slow-motion toppling of Theresa May

Historians have the luxury of identifying defining moments with the benefit of hindsight.  Living in chaotic and uncharted times, the noise of events drowns out perspective, and each incremental stage becomes imbued with a massive significance that it may not deserve.  The defeat of Theresa May’s authoritarian coalition with the Democratic Unionists (a party who take two words to explain what they stand against) last week was both welcome and a further staging post in the unravelling of a seditious administration.  It is not necessarily the defining event.

The response of the fascist right was predictable and vicious.  For 11 Tory MPs it resulted in vilification and worse - death threats are now normalised from those who follow the advice of the extreme press.  The language of “rebel”, “mutineer” and “saboteur” - all epithets with which anyone sane would be prepared to embrace given those who bestow them - creates an atmosphere where the monobrowed idiots are impelled to behave as though those who disagree with them have to be despatched.  It is not a matter of Henry VIII powers, but the murderous outlawdom of Henry II with Thomas Becket.

One of the key drivers of this incitement, for which Paul Dacre and his vile Daily Mail would face prosecution in a state where the rule of law prevailed, is a recognition of how much their extremism is not founded on anything more than shallow rabble-rousing and manipulation.  Given the parallels with Hitler’s approach to the usurpation of power, the coup’s prime movers should consider the impact of a regime’s collapse in the face of reality.  The Little England Brexiter narrative is based around the false prospectus of British supremacy - they would do better examining both how the Nazi Party collapsed in 1944 and 1945 and the subsequent repudiation even by those who actively or passively complied with the regime.  Debrexitisation may be less painful, but the way in which the right’s propaganda machine has normalised fascism and intimidation renders this a possibility rather than a probability.

In pushing the spurious “will of the people” trope as a justification for closing down debate and the freedom of legislators to take action, the right is playing with fire.  While a Commons vote, taking back control from an inept and incompetent Cabinet, securing one of the ostensible aims of the leave campaign, they are reduced to casuistry.  Every headbanging inadequate is claiming that this weakens Theresa May’s hands in negotiations - negotiations that are unnecessary, and which with the balance of powers she is bound to lose, humiliatingly.  This is a desperate throw by a group that recognises that its fundamentals are being rumbled on a regular basis, and which is fearful that it will be landed with the blame when the entire edifice crumbles.

To use the language of authoritarianism and totalitarian control is always an unwise and evil act.  It will come back to haunt its perpetrators.  For every tinpot Haw-Haw, the Fabricants, Rees-Moggs and Melanie Phillipses of this world, time will be unforgiving and they may find the tumbrels arriving sooner than they think.  To denigrate and threaten those who dissent, oppose and challenge is both the act of traitors and a recognition of their lack of legitimacy.  Every time the morons on the right issue threats they are weakened.

Underneath the Parliamentary unravelling of the Tories, and May’s authority and control, there are a number of seismic shifts taking place.  For people who merely track opinion polls as a barometer of public sentiment, it is not obvious that this is occurring, as there remains an apathy towards Labour’s apparent inability to determine whether it is an enabler of evil or an active opposition.  Yet there are indications that a more fundamental rejection of the acquiescence in the Conservative narrative is under way.  This makes the task of opposition both urgent and harder.

For example, there is now evidence that the impact of austerity and Brexit is impacting on household confidence.  This is the Bank of England’s analysis, so, unless you are as morally bankrupt as John Redwood and require the manufacture of fake news, this does not bode well for the progress of the national suicide- a combination of inflation, household debt, falling real wages and job insecurity were not the sunlit uplands that the liars and charlatans spun as the inevitable conseqeunce of Brexit.  As the effects of suicidal policy emerge this will crystallise - and effective opposition will channel the outrage towards its true originators.

Added to this a continuing and steady shift in public opinion over the relationship with Europe, there is now more ammunition for those who seek to impose Parliamentary accountability over the idiots and charlatans squatting on the government benches.  The responsibility of legislators is not to act as cheerleaders and delegates for the unelected - if it looks as though the consequences of idiocy will play to badly then the early benefits of rebellion may develop further into a genuine cross-party and persistent denial of the architects of the right.

Perhaps the strongest, and least-remarked evidence of shape-shifting was the commencement of the Scottish Budget process.  I declare an interest in that I shall be one of those impacted by paying higher tax, and, on balance, I am pleased.  An honest recognition that to maintain and even improve services requires paying for, and that this is better done straightforwardly and upfront, rather than the tinkering of stealth taxation and mortgaging the future that both Labour and Tories have been guilty of over the last thirty years, may be a much more fundamental shift than any other.  Despite the carping of the right, a stoical approach and a recognition that the private and the public realms interact and require contemplation together does not appear to have created a whirlwind of dissent in Scotland.

Given that the Scottish Conservatives are being portrayed as a model for renewal of that vile rabble of selfish and ignorant careerists, this represents an object lesson in the impotence of their efforts. All their rhetoric was directed at tax rises, without any attempt to justify what should be cut.  By the by, Scottish Tories are experts at pork barrel politics, which the odious and incompetent David Mundell exploits at all times in Holyrood while enabling austerity at Westminster - the forked tongue of colonial satraps.  Not one Scottish Tory, despite previous protestations of pro-European views, found it possible to join their courageous colleagues in the national interest.

All early days, and the prognosis is uncertain.  There have been two defining moments in politics this year - May losing the election and the first parliamentary defeat.  However, the gathering storm of the lies and false prospectus of both austerity and the Brexit coup will form a backdrop to the febrile and discontented Christmas and New Year season, where editors and journalists seek sensation in the absence of evidence.  A government that legitimises and fails to condemn domestic terrorism in the name of keeping itself in power is unworthy, and when this is recognised the only growth industry will be defence lawyers and those widening the exit doors from a failed dictatorship.

Sunday, 3 December 2017

A Cabinet of wankers

Theresa May will be defined by masturbation.  Weak, impotent and buffeted by events that are beyond her comprehension but eminently predictable to all those who do not reduce our horizons to the confines of the internecine delusions of the far right, her government jerks on, incapable and unattractive.  Allied to the Conservative penchant for exhibitionism, the regime combines political and moral corruption with an economic illiteracy unparalleled since Winston Churchill’s inglorious tenure at the Treasury between 1924 and 1929.

Whether or not there is a police vendetta against Damian Green is moot, and even whether he had huge numbers of pornographic images on his computer would be an amusing diversion on the lines of the Majorite morality crusade, were it not for the application of inductive reasoning.  Green is, in case people had forgotten, one of the alleged Dirty Three Dozen Tories - only this time with a public allegation against him.  A classic tactic in these cases is to create false outrage about a related but containable issue.

What it does reveal, however, is the extent to which the howling fools and sinister manipulators of the right are in control of debate.  As many have observed, any public servant or most private-sector employee would be subject to disciplinary action or dismissal for possession of inappropriate images - and one would, in the light of the emerging endemic of sexism, abuse and bullying, expect that politicians should, in their putative role as leaders and exemplars, set a standard that as a minimum reflects that which they would apply to other, less entitled mortals.

Before moving on from the Kleenex to the world of onanistic politics, it should be noted in passing that the cretinous Nadine Dorries has publicly implied that she allows other people to access her computer using her log-in and password - which is more than usually moronic for the Tory equivalent of Kate Hoey. Given the suspicion over Russian interference and breaches of security sufficient to push the UK administration into barring anti-virus software where there are concerns over its intention, this is so stupid as to represent the Darwin Award Emeritus, and it would be fun to speculate that she will need a basic course on data security.

Meanwhile, in the world of narcissm and racism, the interaction between Jacob Rees-Mogg and Steve Bannon was publicised without a hint of surprise, although the anger at the third-rate Lord Haw-Haw’s conniving with Breitbart was clear.  Mogg spent his formative years in various disgusting cabals, including addressing far-right racist dinners, however much he denies it.  The Tories are clearly happy to allow this exhibitionist Farage-licker free rein.  He pops up with the foul hypocrites of the extreme right on regular occasions, a circle jerk of Redwood, Patterson, Bone and others which if May had any authority she would stamp out with a sermon on the evils of self-inflicted blindness.

This is a government in name only - with no authority and no interaction with the challenges that it should be facing.  When its social mobility commission exits as a block, citing the incapability of the administration to address it, it reinforces that every utterance May has emitted since her coronation and near-defenestration is hot air, windy and completely unaligned with the approach she is taking.  She plays fast and loose with facts, she has no conception of the unfolding risks of tragedy in Ireland both economically and politically.- morally she and her DUP allies will be responsible for any resurgence in terorrism and the breakdown of a painstaking process at unravelling centuries of damage.

All this fiasco and malevolence is fed through self-love - the Tories look into mirrors and see perfection in themselves, if they can see anything at all.  Ethically bankrupt, the hilarious report that David Davis will resign if Green has to fall on his handkerchief, reveals more about their priorities and values than any weighty pseudo-intellectual tome with Roger Scruton’s name on the bottom.  Either the right to do what the hell they want trumps justice, or they are fighting like rats in a sack about to be jettisoned - hoping to escape before their inadequacy, hypocrisy and turpitude consign them to oblivion.  If one had to identify a collective noun for wankers, there is an obvious choice.

Sunday, 26 November 2017

@truemagic68 - convenient patsy or utter idiot?

It is unwise, even in these times of treason, to assume that there is a level of stupidity to which the Brexit apologists will not sink.  An intriguing exhibit this week was a Tweet that has exacted a suitable range of snorting, derisory, satirical responses:

I assumed that this had emerged from the darker confines of somewhere within the Russian troll factory, possibly funded by the same cabal of plutocratic traitors who are now finding their involvement in the leave campaign somewhat embarrassing.  This was clearly a mistake.

It took me a couple of days, shorting sterling, talking the country down and engaging in intimate discussions with Michel Barnier and Donald Tusk, intermittently engaging in the general Twitter abuse that this kind of fuckwittery provides so effectively,  before I realised that this was not just another short-lived flash-in-the-pan Twitter account (rather like mine was intended to be, anonymous for professional reasons), but a smug, self-gratifying piece of poltroonery from someone quite prepared to publicise his complete disconnect from reality.

Naturally, since I am a lover of fake facts, it was but a small step from there to Wikipedia, which contains a page ripe for editing about Mr Buik MBE, who made his fortune in “financial services” and spread betting, the latter being even more amoral than the former.  Mr Buik, born in 1944, so probably too young for National Service, seems to combine both the cretinism of the forelock-tugging rats of the Moggian tendency and the assumption of the third-rate spivs who congregated around Thatcher that the possession of money gives you the right to trample roughshod over the community whose efforts, taxes and unfortunate complicity, put you in the privileged bubble from which you can vomit out such facile and evil garbage.

The hilarious nature of this Tweet should have gone unremarked within the intellectually-challenged assertions of the far right of which I suspect Mr Buik to be a denizen.  The falseness and imbecility of the argument is exposed from the outset - “call me naive” is always clickbait.  However, the mindset is straight out of the 1970s far right, a series of paranoid tinfoil assertions around the nature of democracy and the way in which it is the enemy within - in this case those of us who recognise that representative democracy does not cease through a corrupted and gerrymandered referendum - who are responsible for the consequences of other people’s actions.

The consequences of the Brexit policies being enacted by this government do not to be thwarted by the efforts of dissidents and subversives like me.  Their progenitors can do it all for themselves, without any help.  It is not possible to defy the laws of physics or the basic principles of economics, nor is it possible a collective myopia can descend to blot out the reality of the political nightmare that has been unleashed, especially as the coalescence of the economic storms results in indebtedness, inflation and the final removal of vestigial “feel good” myths still being touted by the right.

The “financial services” sector, however important it is at the moment, and might be in the future, despite the desired Brexit of the Buik tendency, is hardly in a position to lecture others on the proximate causes of success.  If it hadn’t been for the gunpoint largesse of the taxpayer and the pursuit of policies over decades that have favoured the parasitic over the productive or the contributor, the real economy might be in a position where it could resist the impacts of a lunatic policy multiplied by the madness and hypocrisy of zealots.  Spread betting is another extraction of surplus value, designed to further deplete wealth and provide profits to the leeches.

Blaming others is classic projection - a classic diversionary tactic of those who know that their entire worldview is based on contempt for the masses.  In many ways, this is a Marxist worldview warped into the kind of third-rate neoconservative drivel that we expect from the right-wing press.  It could emerge blinking from its hole into the commentary pages of the Torygraph or the Sunday Times, with equal asininity.

I’m sure that Buik was trying to elicit responses, and on that level he has succeeded and I have failed.  However, he does deserve to be called out as someone whose actions, in themselves, have been responsible for the disaster that even someone as apparently disconnected as him can recognise.  I can call out hypocrites and liars secure in the knowluedge that I did not vote to empower the current policy, nor have I ever voted for a party or candidate who has wobbled on European engagement and the promotion of genuine democracy, rather than the plebiscitary confirmation of decisions of immense complexity and long-term impact. That makes me both altruistic and patriotic, neither of which admirable qualities shine out from his idiotic Tweet.

As a provident remainer, aware of the consequences that the current delusion is shifting from extreme risk to the central scenario, I will take actions to protect myself.  I will engage in debate, and I will use my democratic rights to put my views forward.  It’s a small step from this kind of inflammatory twaddle to “arbeit macht frei”, and, given what else is going on within a broken and corrupted system, I wonder whether @truemagic68 and his ilk could do with further illumination.  Given the Twitter handle, it might be unwise to allocate the task to a Witchfinder-General.

Friday, 24 November 2017

The Budget, the Tories and BBC Stockholm Syndrome

Mentioning the B-word seems beyond the BBC.  Philip Hammond’s hand-wringing Budget with its woeful admission that there is no meaningful economic policy has been hailed by the Tories as a triumph, which reveals more than anyone should have to put up with.  As an exercise in studied incompetence and fiddling while the building collapses it was a further reminder of the moral vacuum and selfishness that fuels this government.

The delusions of the Brexit brigade are well-documented.  Only a couple of weeks ago the right-wing press and the BBC gave pride of place to a demented piece of drug-fuelled cretinism from an astroturf group entitled Economists for Free Trade - in reality a further publicity stunt by fascist fellow-travellers such as Patrick Minford and Jacob Rees-Mogg - that suggested sunlit uplands post-national suicide.  Instead, Hammond was presented with the reality that even modest growth to allow for the protection and promotion of public services is now beyond an economy that has inflicted self-harm on a scale never before attempted.

Hammond, being a suave and sophisticated political operator, knows that the blame will stick to him, which is why the entire force of Tory cheerleaders has been brought to bear on blaming the current Labour Party for the financial crash of 2008.  For those of us with long memories, the Tory front bench was doing a similar diversionary trick in the last weeks of the Major government, eighteen years after the Callaghan administration had breathed its last.  Most economically-literate observers would note that Brown and Darling did a startlingly-effective job in mitigating the impacts of previous policy errors by both parties, and that the reheated entrails of neoconservative deregulation, however much they are desired by our home-grown Putin and Trump apologists, do not form the basis for either a stable or a happy society.

For a government hemmed in by bribery, corruption and incompetence, without a majority, no Budget can be exciting.  If it wasn’t for Labour’s self-inflicted impotence, the Opposition would be making hay at the moment - when the IFS signals a two to three decade stagnation in pay, alongside the destruction of services and the public realm, this should be open season on the orthodoxy and the double-speak that somehow makes this virtuous.  We can rest assured that the Tory millionaires, for whom politics is pin money and an opportunity to play games with other people’s lives, will not be adversely affected by their malignant stupidity.

For a large, major economy, the prospects are dire.  Anyone pointing out that productivity is strongly correlated to investment is ignored - yet since the advisory referendum capital investment has fallen off a cliff.  Not exactly encouraging risk-taking and entrepreneurship, the lie that was fed to us by the Leave campaigners in the run-up to the poll is now coming home to roost.  For those of us who saw this coming, it was never going to be an immediate disaster - Project Fear foresaw the slow-motion multiplication of problems that we are now experiencing.  The return of stagflation, and the wanton destruction of the bases on which economic and social growth can be built are actions of criminal negligence for which politicians should be at best ejected and at worst impeached.

Yet not a word of the causal relationship is breathed on the BBC.  Its news outlets constantly fail to make any link between a national piece of self-harm and the economy, preferring instead to peddle the delusion that the nasty European Union is deliberately setting out to damage the Disunited Kingdom.  There is no link between ignorant and crass politicians in Westminster and the emerging crisis over Ireland, North and South, but all blame must attach to an institution of which Eire is a committed and constructive member.  Our obligations as a member are apparently to be wiped out without a murmur, and because the EU won’t accept this it is apparently undermining the entire edifice on which the Brexit lie is founded.

It is obvious that the lunatics are rattled - there is a flare-up of the “get behind Brexit” accusations of treason and closure of debate.  This is encouraging.  A government of incompetent fraudsters and half-witted traitors is there for the taking, but it needs to be harried on all sides.  At the same time, we need to call out the incompetents, the imbeciles and collaborators in the BBC, which has let itself down and all those of us who want the debate to be conducted on the basis of evidence rather than as staged, third-race gladiatorial combat.

Tuesday, 21 November 2017

Who is behind Labour's cunning plan?

Craven is an insufficient adjective to describe the official Opposition.  Watching Labour's performance is an exercise in sustained masochism, served up with smugness and inadequacy.  A government, in name only, punch-drunk and dragging its corpse around in the hope that someone will deal with it humanely should be a target of clinical assault.  A government without a majority, reliant on sectarian bigotry to maintain it in office, and where the factions within it are turning on each other like starving rats is there for the taking.

Yesterday evening, the front bench and the Labour whips insisted on permitting the Tories to avoid a defeat (or at least a bloody nose) on remaining in the EU customs union.  This is not an arcane issue; it is about the only potential solution to the status of Northern Ireland that does not trigger a breakdown of the peace process.  It enables trade and it simplifies bureaucratic processes - what's not to like?  The honourable MPs from both "major" parties who joined the Liberal Democrats, SNP, Plaid and Greens in the lobbies will be vindicated.

Perhaps somebody should tell Jeremy Corbyn that a "jobs-first" Brexit does not involve losing all the jobs before the cyanide is swallowed.  This happened on the day that another one of David Davis's treacherous lies was exposed, as the new homes for banking and medicines within the EU were announced.  Directly, that's a thousand jobs.  Indirectly, it's the support infrastructure and the prestige and skill lost - simultaneously with the impact of the global perception of Britain and its duplicitous Foreign Secretary resulting in the loss of a UK judge on the International Court of Justice.

Labour, instead, sit on the sidelines.  If there is a strategy, it is to allow the Tories to implode, and then sweep into power.  It worked in 1997, albeit at the third attempt, but that was before the rise of civic nationalism and the unnatural death of the Liberal Democrats as a national force.  There are too many blowhards in Labour - Keir Starmer continually talks a good talk and then fails to deliver.

Perhaps he should take lessons from Anna Soubry and the Tory mutineers, who are opposing their own government in a way that Labour seems to be incapable of articulating.  Virtue signalling on the need for radical reform of society (which is something I agree with, incidentally) is completely meaningless when you are not merely observing but facilitating policies that make it virtually certain that an incoming government would be hamstrung, along with the citizenry, for decades.

Many people were pleasantly surprised by Labour's performance in May's suicidal election - and there were many causes, not least a general rejection of austerity and the pursuit of social injustice at the heart of the Tory/Kipper/DUP mission.  Most research, however, gives weight to the theory that those disenfranchised from the xenophobic and mad Brexit catastrophe were likely to vote Labour not out of positive enthusiasm but out of an expectation that there might at least be the possibility of change.  Labour are not even acknowledging this - preferring inactivity over active opposition.

If their strategists thought that the next election was winnable they should be fighting the Tories whenever possible, providing ballast to sceptical supporters who may not be prepared to hold their nose next time.  Support is soft, and fickle.  Some Labour supporters are advising "wait and see", as though there is a cunning plan in the wings that will somehow provide an escape route.  Unfortunately, the driving political force behind Labour's current impotence does not appear to be Machiavelli, but Baldrick.

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.

Thursday, 6 July 2017

The paradoxical coalition

A wounded administration is still a dangerous beast.  Impotent, illegitimate and corrupt, the Conservative/DUP bastard provides Theresa May with political cover if and when Labour extricate themselves from the morbid engagement that makes them far more valuable to the Tories than any shady deal, being played as the Tories take further steps towards the cliff-edge and the abyss that awaits them as the consequences of their policies hit home.

There is a much more upbeat tone around those of us who believe that the referendum settled nothing - inadequately executed for internal Tory consumption and then debate constricted in the fascist tones of populism and the inevitability of an outcome that the serial liars and traitors (Daniel Hannan is merely one of the most egregious of this sub-species) portrayed as entirely unthinkable - the summary ejection and the realisation that the European project can proceed to impose its own terms, while music to the ears of Trump and Putin, is already impacting on the economy, the psychology and the viability of the nation.

No time for triumphalism, though, because the debate is not rational.  There has been not one attempt to articulate what the purported benefits of implementing a suicidal strategy would be, principally because there is nothing in the cupboard beyond dribbling propaganda and a feebly-articulated desire for a simpler, nastier world.  In the face of challenge, all the fools and captured charlatans can come up with is that the referendum was a democratic vote, and that therefore it remains immutable.  If that is the case, can we please return to 1975 and apply the same logic?

Most rational people, and representatives, can see the folly and stupidity of a blind pursuing of a reckless policy.  The General Election provided a freshly-elected Commons, with MPs who are not bound by the decisions of the previous House, and who should, if they are discharging non-partisan responsibility that their oath implies, be looking out for the interests of the British nations.  Where a political position is both superseded and insane, then there should be no shame in rowing back from the brink - and, as has been demonstrated by the recent election, the power of the hard right plutocrats is diminishing.

This does need new thinking - and to reflect that there is no settled faction within the Commons.  MPs are representatives not delegates, both of their constituency and their parties.  Given that, despite the apparent acquiescence of the party, much of the Momentum machine is now issuing threats of deselection to anyone who dares question the Coalition of Dishonour that Corbyn is leading alongside the far right Brexit loons in the Tories and DUP, this will require a change of approach, and the kind of cross-party bloc that has not been seen before in Westminster politics.

We have moved beyond the phase of second referendums and procedural debates at the centre into the existential crisis of a bankrupt policy and an amoral, seditious administration.  There is a solid phalanx of pro-European engagement represented in Parliament, the SNP, Liberal Democrats, Plaid, Greens are in a pole position to focus as a bloc to attract dissenters from the main parties, without obligating support on every issue.  Having a clear, disruptive and challenging strategy to bring forward an alternative course on Brexit, and peeling off both Tory and Labour votes when necessary, would be a genuine act of opposition in a legislature where, on the central issue, there is a monolith thwarting debate and claiming a mandate that does not exist either in constitutional theory or the rapidly-changing base of public opinion.

This is not a time to assume that rationality will prevail, even in the face of evidence.  If there is a face-saving climbdown to be had, that would be, in the short-term, better than rubbing the May nose in the ordure that her behaviour deserves - revenge and realignment need to wait as part of a long game.  The meretricious and the downright criminal will get their comeuppance, but we cannot afford either hubris or triumph in the near future.  Until Labour recognises the opposition role is there for the taking, it is quite possible that Corbyn and May can thwart the changing will of the people.

Sunday, 2 July 2017

If Labour is the answer, then what is the question?

For all the rhetoric, Labour is still in denial.  The pathetic mewling of Emily Thornberry, justifying the sacking of three front-bench politicians would be ironic if the charge of "virtue signalling" were not much more closely identified with the tendency to assume that you can turn the political clock back half a century to a world where certainty and Labour vanguardism could still be projected without a sense of participating in one of the interminable television compilations that pad out uninspiring schedules.

Labour's support is brittle and may become increasingly grudging.  Evidence from recent polling suggests that their voters are sceptical of the leadership's gavotte of idiocy with Theresa May on Europe - the paradox is that this chimes with an instinctive grasp that rebalancing the economy and society cannot proceed in parallel with the destructive idiocy that Corbyn and his acolytes parade as the "will of the people".  The new Stalinists parade their single interpretation of truth, pushing the trope that dissent or recognition that the world moves on will undermine the coming revolution, with much the same unevidenced fervour demonstrated by the snivelling Brexit right.

In a more febrile political world, where old loyalties are mutable and where the urgency is to resist a right-wing, corporatist coup and rolling back conservatism, Labour's tactics may well turn out to be delusional.  The advance of insurgency politics provided the upset that was inflicted on conventional politics by the General Election, but it could equally result in a further shift when it becomes clear that the emotional punch packed by Labour's articulation of the grievance and frustration after forty years of Thatcherite lunacy is not matched by adaptability, empathy or the ability to build wider coalitions.

The Westminster electoral system punishes insurgency from outside its hegemony.  Labour's rise in 2017 may be pushing the limits, but there is no likelihood of a British En Marche emerging in the near future at national level within these confines.  However it is equally unlikely that the "one more heave" scenario will propel Labour into power without a further collapse in the SNP and Tory votes - the latter are doing their utmost to avoid the former through their bribery of the DUP and the vacuous exclusion of the devolved nations from discussions of the common future.  Peak Tory decline does not automatically translate into the forward march of Labour.

Politicians are, generally correctly, distrusted.  Blair and Cameron epitomised the sense of entitlement  - rigid party discipline and control of messaging worked where you had majorities that would permit the Corbyns of this world to rebel and maintain your control.  Cameron and May, in thrall to the cretinous, sub-normal fascists of the DUP and the Peter Bone tendency, have demonstrated that the limits of party boundaries and party wrangling betray the national interest to the extent where arraigning them for treason is more than just a debating proposition.

Corbyn does not appear to have learned this lesson, with his attack-dog apologists spewing out more venom over 49 MPs who voted against the whip than they do against the Tories.  Easy targets go largely ignored - the corruption and venality of Tory councils and their outsourcing, blame-ducking should have been the single dominant story this week.  While we all want to see the end of this squatting, squalid maladministration, a march on Kensington and Chelsea Town Hall and the defenestration not merely of the Cabinet but the entire putrid horde of Tories would have resonated much more than an internal spat.  Sadiq Khan's call for Commissioners to run the council, and any others found to have negligently endangered their citizens, would have resonated even more if it had been embraced by the national leadership.

When you have a squatting government, without a mandate or a policy, the aim should be to harry them at all costs.  It is not virtue-signalling to test the water on the convictions of those within the Tories who watch in impotent rage as the lunatics sell out our future.  It is the act of an irresponsible egotism to assume that cross-party and pluralistic approaches are somehow a sign of weakness, and that the only legitimate expression of opposition comes from Labour - where other parties and opinions are subsumed within a single, intolerant narrative where dissent is punished.  This is not strength, but an insecurity that threatens the future.

Adapting to the next eighteen months, where, as the folly and consequences of its misinterpretation of the referendum result unfold, is a challenge that Labour needs to rise to - rather than hoping that the blame will fall solely on the Tories.  Every time that the leadership permits the Tories an uncontested victory will make this even harder than it is already.  Labour is already assuming that its dominance will perpetuate the holding of noses and continued support from those who oppose the evil of the current government.  In six months' time, as the consequences of this approach become clearer, this will be a much harder sell.

This depressing prospect could undermine all the good that the opposition parties achieved in the wider context - shifting debate away from competitive tax cuts towards the definition of society and its obligations.  More people voted for parties of hope, rather than nihilism - and unless there is a recognition that Labour's future prospects depend on both mobilisation and generosity, as well as honesty around the consequences of economic catastrophe, the fragmentation and regrouping may hand the Tories not just 2022 but the next decade on a plate.  Complicity in this does not require uncritical rallying around Labour, but an honest acceptance of debate.  Three weeks after a great success, Labour is already stuttering.

Wednesday, 28 June 2017

The Corbyn conundrum

The power of the cult in British politics is growing.  The adherents of immolation who promote the myth of Tory Brexit, usually distinguishable by a monobrowed rejection of any sentence that contains more than one clause and words with more than one syllable, continue their selfish path to destruction, now supported by a peace-threatening bribe to a tribe of Neanderthal thugs.  At the same time, there remain a core of Jeremy Corbyn's followers who have a messianic urge to both claim the right to govern and to dismiss the concerns and plurality that has led to his current near-success.

My views on the Tories would remain constant, were they not continually finding new depths of amoral cupidity into which they can descend.  It is a sad reflection of the corruption of discourse that Philip Hammond now seems like a reasonable, well-adjusted paragon of the centre-right, although his liberation by May's monumental blunder is at least resulting in some subtle, well-argued baiting of the fascists, lunatics and dribblers epitomised by the quisling tendency.  Yet when even defenders of the right find it necessary to distance themselves from the blatant blackmail being foisted on May by the DUP, there is a febrility and uncertainty that renders the path ahead remarkably interesting but deeply unnerving.

One of the most satisfying elements of the General Election result is the extent to which the hubris and arrogance on all sides did not result in a decisive outcome.  You would be forgiven, however, for assuming that Labour had, by not winning, marched to victory on a level not seen since 1945.  There is also very little reflection taking place, at least by the Labour leadership, as to the various reasons that secured a vote for them and the avoidance of the annihilation that May and Crosby had sketched out for them.  Unless this is taken on board, then this support is not a plateau for garnering votes but a peak with an equally unappealing precipice.

Even with the apparent reinforcement of a two-party system, the Commons remains unrepresentative and totally unsuitable for a modern democratic chamber.  The only viable combinations of MPs to form a party-based administration are the DUP/Tory coalition of bigotry, or a grand coalition involving Tory and Labour.  Hardly flexible, or reflective of the advance of the centre-left at the expense of UKIP, which is the under-reported analysis of this election.  Labour cannot assume that "one more heave" will secure a majority, nor that this is a desirable outcome without commitment to causes that reach beyond tribal boundaries.

The psephologists will research the extent to which Labour's support was bolstered by those who shared two imperatives - stopping May from having a free ride for five years, and creating the possibility for a contemplation of how to minimise or eliminate the damage from the European folly.  The extent to which this group of voters is engaged and prepared to continue to support Labour will be critical, as it contains people who would, in a preferential world, choose them over the Tories but would otherwise support other parties.  This may be a substantial percentage of voters, whose support was not based around enthusiasm but a recognition that in a screwed-up system the needs of the hour had to dominate.

Corbyn is popular and playing an effective outsider card at the moment.  However, this does not necessarily translate into a simple path to power.  Scotland's snubbing through the DUP deal, and the tainting of Labour's brand through its complicity in anti-SNP propaganda may well play badly in the weeks and months to come.  Anger about austerity and perpetuation of the status quo could easily tip against Labour once it becomes clear that their endorsing of the Tory Brexit line will reduce any incoming government's room for manoeuvre.  Whether Labour can position itself around a more sensible and pragmatic position that allows for rowing back from their complicity in causing the mess is a key test - and galvanising and encouraging backbench revolt in the Tory ranks has to be a priority alongside continuing to campaign - the echo chamber's adulation may not be enough if there is a bitter second election in the near future.

Much of what was in the Labour manifesto was mainstream social democracy, and should be welcomed as such.  It is why support remains high, and needs to be built on - although there is part of me that considers it significantly less adventurous than the SDP/Liberal Alliance platform of 1983, the potential to reset the political centre slightly to the left of Tony Blair would be a welcome achievement.  Political reform and internationalism cannot be forgotten as ideas that underpin a continued level of support for Labour from beyond its core base, nor should the concept of informal collaboration to undermine the Tories.  I want Labour, and by extension Corbyn, to succeed.  At this stage I am still not convinced that a heroic failure will provide the basis on which the final destruction of the Tory hegemony can be achieved.  It would be ironic if they achieve it themselves, which seems as plausible at the moment as the determinist momentum that some of the more starry-eyed on the left seem to think sufficient.

Sunday, 25 June 2017

The patriotic road to Tory Downfall

Whenever Andrea Leadsom is inflicted on the public, the Tories are in trouble.  Her sole function appears to be that of making Theresa May look as though there might have once been a flicker of humanity and common decency.  That this is at least partially successful demonstrates what a disgusting travesty of a politician Leadsom is.  A year ago, she was pretending that she was a suitable leader because someone (alas) had impregnated her - now she was seen to emerge from her sewer to berate the media for not being sufficiently uncritical about the rapid unravelling of her lies and false prospectus on Britain's future.

Far right lunatics such as Leadsom do not like the concept of free speech.  In a world where their agenda is dictated by a mixture of off-shore oligarchs, foreign powers and a self-interest that will prove suicidal, the idea that the press and the public have not just a right but a duty to challenge them is anathema.  Bread and circuses would be too much of an indulgence of the plebs, so hectoring and contempt become the staple currencies.

This hysteria demonstrates a regime that knows it is on the cusp of being found out.  From the hubris two months ago, where May's all-conquering authoritarianism would drive out all dissent and kill off parliamentary opposition for ever, there is now an impotent husk - humiliated by its own arrogance and now a laughing-stock beyond the comprehension of even the most pessimistic of the Project Fear alumni.  A Queen's Speech which, for two years, demonstrates the extent to which the Tories are now trapped at the mercy of events, and which will haunt their hopefully-troubled dreams, and the ongoing revelations of the extent to which public safety has been compromised over the last three decades, are both manifestations of a regime in denial.

Patriotism and responsibility go hand in hand.  MPs declare allegiance to the Crown and, by extension, the citizenry on whom the existence of a government machine depends.  Their duty is not to act as facilitators of a national immolation - and to provide leadership.  This goes beyond party boundaries - and especially where there is no overarching expression of public opinion.  Politicians cannot abdicate their duties, and will be found out if they do so.  Nor can they lie - as May has been doing consistently to claim that the election result gives her and her henchpeople an unfettered mandate to pursue their ends without either complaint or scrutiny.

It is difficult to envisage a nation committing such an act of egregious folly and self-destruction without external events conspiring against it.  With the exception of a few rogue states, there is not one of the UK's erstwhile allies that would have wished such a farrago of destruction and incompetence upon it.   A rational administration would be looking to mitigate and row back from inflicting damage upon its citizens, especially now that the normal processes of representative government have yielded not even a qualified consent to the course that the Tories are hell-bent on navigating the nations towards.

There may be closer analogies between the last days of the Third Reich and the Tories than is comfortable for anyone to contemplate.  For the avoidance of doubt, I am not claiming that there are many in the Conservative camp who are out-and-out Nazis, but that the behaviour patterns encouraging and abetting needless national destruction are sadly aligning themselves.  At least we still have freedom to challenge and to express dissent, which is why Leadsom's bilge and bile are such an alarming manifestation.

For most of the last eighteen months of the Second World War in Europe, it was clear that the forces lined up against Germany would prevail.  There is a similar, albeit less sinister, imbalance today in the farce that David Davis presides over.  The denial of the realities and the consequences of actions, for fear of displeasing and upsetting the leadership bunker, and the destruction of the basic pillars of civilisation proceeds regardless, and without any apparent rationality.  Working to Theresa is not in the national interests.

Leadsom's vileness at least provides confirmation that there is some form of collective cultism ongoing.  The Tories, squatting, impotent and hostage to both internal and external defenestration, are a symbol of the extent to which the darkness and evil of a regime that believes itself to be both superior and unchallengeable can fall.  It is to be hoped that the consequences of this sedition and treachery form the basis for action, and that the liars, scoundrels and thieves will be kicked out without the social and material destruction that has often accompanied the will of the people finally being unleashed.

Friday, 23 June 2017

Dacre, May and the legitimisation of terrorism

I am ashamed to hold a British passport.  A year after the referendum, Theresa May has turned the United Kingdom into a vile object of derision.  A major, albeit declining economy, and the enabler of much of the Enlightenment is now a horrible place to live, embarrassing to admit to citizenship of, and heading for a self-inflicted catastrophe that arrogance and ignorance from a government with no authority and a leadership of fourth-rate, self-serving, corrupt narcissists will exacerbate rather than turn round.  What a time this is to be alive.

A country like this needs scapegoats.  I am proud to be a saboteur, a wrecker, an enemy of the people and a citizen of nowhere - all epithets freely bestowed upon those who dare to challenge the illegitimate and idiotic direction of government.  I cannot, along with millions of others, give up the essential optimism that civilisation and intelligence have some weight against the oncoming fascist storm, or that the elusive "will of the people" requires me to modify my views, or to refrain from engagement.  It is tempting, to watch the cretins and the vandals at play, to leave the field to them - but the knowledge that when the chickens return to roost they will turn on those who either failed to warn them or who warned them only too clearly requires, at least for self-respect, to challenge and to resist the hegemony of darkness.

This week has seen the failure of government to protect its citizens, and a spineless, patronising and totally inadequate response by our alleged Prime Minister.  In order to provide relief to those who survived an inferno, hundreds of frightened, dispossessed people, an aid package is announced that amounts to two-thirds of the money given to the stoat-like fascist Jacob Rees-Mogg to refurbish his ancestral home.  In the aftermath of an event that defines the social and political divide, May goes to visit the top brass of the fire service, not the heroic rank-and-file who will reek of smoke, death and proletarian outrage.

The leader of the council responsible for the building where the inferno took place, a Nick Paget-Brown, remains in post.  He claims he offered his resignation to the borough's Tory cabinet, but they refused to accept it - the rats and vermin that infest the modern municipal Conservative party would not wish to set a precedent for accepting that with power, inflated allowances and the potential for endless graft comes the obligation to take responsibility.  Across London, from Westminster to Barnet, the leaderships ,whose usually-undeclared aim of social cleansing and the privatisation of essential services is now glaringly apparent, must be quaking at the possibility that they may not be able to hide behind officers for much longer.

When political tectonics shift, as they do, those whose vested interests defend the existing order are upset.  The disgusting tactics of the Tories (which appear to be moving towards yet another criminal investigation for electoral malpractice, even before the 2015 prosecution is concluded) have created the legitimisation of fascist mob rule that is expressed in every slavering excretion from the orifices of the Daily Mail.  Paul Dacre, who, in self-awareness constantly bandies the "c" word around his playpen, would, in a decent world, be arraigned for incitement and seditious libel.  Instead he is feted by the Tories and allowed to ride rampant over any ethics or honesty.

Dacre and his rag are part of the fatwa culture that provides far right extremists with their pseudo-justification.  Last weekend's terrorist attack on people returning from a mosque is the logical culmination of a long and dishonourable road to normalising hatred.  Over the past decade, Dacre has presided over a coarsening and deliberate degradation of journalism - identified alongside his even more uncouth comrades at the Scum for hate speech - and acting as an unelectable tribune that encourages demonisation and targeting of groups who are both minorities and vulnerable.  Over the last year he has crossed the line from being a skilful, far right propagandist to the position of caliph for the fascist minority.

The far right, as Dacre epitomises, are frightened.  What they are unleashing is on a scale that they cannot control, and threatens both their legitimacy and their hegemony.  Their apologia for the Finsbury Park terrorist was that he was "self-radicalised" - whereas in the case of the equally vile Islamist terrorists they suggest that there is something wrong with all adherents of that faith and all those who are part of the Muslim community.  He is desperately hoping that this solecism is not identified - as the legacy of a year of vilification may not be that his enemies are routed but that we turn on his evil empire.

When the Guardian published a provocative, but pertinent cartoon on Tuesday, pointing out the potential connections between right wing media outlets and the motivations of a terrorist murderer, Dacre lost his rag in public.  A bizarre "editorial" attacked the paper for its temerity in questioning the impact of the Daily Blackshirt on creating and legitimising the far right's entitlement, based on lies and half-truths that would make Goebbels blush.  Dacre lied about his links to Mail Online, probably because it continues to use the idiot Katie Hopkins to spread racist, ignorant bile and have not even had the grace to sack her for a constant parade of incitement, lies and sedition.  For a man whose organ has attempted to stifle the rule of law and to create the Poujadist equivalent of Sharia law, this is a depth of stupidity that suggests that the rat might finally be cornered.

Meanwhile, his grip is loosening.  May and Davis are now facing up to the fact that the European Union now holds all the cards, and that over the summer whatever English hubris remains will be deflated.  A government with no majority, so that its legislative programme is as limp and flaccid as its moral compass, has yet, two weeks on, to do a deal with the flat-earth dinosaurs of the Democratic Unionist Party, at the same time as its arrogance destroys the Good Friday agreement.  Hardly a great advertisement for the right - even before its stumbling, pathetic response to an avoidable disaster.

Britain desperately needs a break - and whenever one thinks that the darkest hour has come a new form of immolation emerges.  May, Dacre, Johnson and others are all scrapings from the bottom of the same septic tank, and the nations are crying out for leadership.  A British Macron is required - or at least the conditions for a break from tribal politics.  That is what Dacre and his scummy cohorts fear - a genuine reform of politics where their vested interests are given appropriate weight before being ignored.  The darkness we are now enduring might, with appropriate direction, lead to a realisation that power is achieved through citizen consent and engagement, and a revolution that turns out the hypocrites and hate-mongers that May and Dacre now represent.

Saturday, 17 June 2017

Staring into the abyss

Rage is building.  Theresa May, lurching from ill-considered political liaison to full-blown contemptuousness, is rapidly turning the national fate to tragedy and farce.  The full extent of the Grenfell Tower disaster is not yet known, although its scale and impact are only too visible and imaginable, but in a week where no stable government can be formed, and when the illegitimate squatters are commencing the process of negotiations with our European allies, it is an appalling reminder of the legacy of ill-considered policy.

There are events, which, in hindsight, feel less seismic in impact than they appear to as they unfold.  This is unlikely to be one of them.  Coming after an election called for vanity and narrow partisan advantage, the focus is inevitably on the failure of the state and its apparatus to protect its citizens, and the rampant greed and incompetence that allows this to be the case.  For over thirty years, governments of all hues have pursued policies that, taken in their totality, are based not on the public good but around slogans and unproved assertions of a cultishness that would be seen as too extreme for mainstream consumption.

Rightly, attention has been focused on the heroism and suffering that accompany such grotesqueries.  The undercurrents of anger and the reflex reaction that there is something stinking and foetid in the political system are there, and being articulated.  Where you have the right-wing echo chamber  calling for an event not to be politicised, the only appropriate reaction is to speculate on precisely what they do not wish to emerge.  

During the prolonged idiocy of the campaign to leave the 21st century behind, much was made of the opportunity that this would provide for further destruction of the rights and obligations to provide a decent society.  There is the ongoing reminder of the far right's advocacy of a "bonfire of controls" - a phrase that we should use to remind them of their complicity in evil.  Shielded by wealth from the consequences of their own venal stupidity, and by a compliant media that repeats their scrofulous vomitings of "market", "enterprise" and "choice" without demur or intellectual challenge, they have fraudulently obtained power and destroyed accountability while ducking responsibility.

This week's disaster now has the feeling of inevitability.  Tory and Labour governments have washed their hands of housing policy, and in some cases the former have actively encouraged the use of economic sanctions as an indirect means of social cleansing.  London Tory Boroughs, of which Kensington and Chelsea is just one example, have followed in the footsteps of Westminster in the 1980s and taken at best a passive role in accelerating the march of inequality and exclusion, and, in some cases, actively promoted this for electoral gain.  Hardly surprising, therefore, that, beyond the insulated ranks of parasitic plutocrats there is increasing unrest.

Add to this the mania for outsourcing, subcontracting and washing hands of responsibility.  Councillors hide behind officials, who hide behind "arms-length" bodies, who hide behind contractors, who hide behind subcontractors, who hide behind suppliers, who then go bankrupt.  At the top of the pile, there is no sense of public service, and no clear acceptance that with receiving public largesse and trust there come an obligation to shoulder responsibility.  From May's choreographed and disgraceful behaviour through Ministers, Tory Council leaders and the third-rate senior officers lured by huge salaries and minimal accountability, there is a cesspool of graft and venality at the centre of all levels of government.

These are the people who claim leadership and entitlement - not those victims of their policies.  These are the people who will be engaging with European leaders in the months to come, if the seditions administration survives.  This marks the destruction of what remains of civilised values and discourse, in favour of virtue-signalling and blame-deflection.  As a republican, it is deeply ironic to observe that the hereditary monarch has displayed more empathy with human catastrophe than an allegedly-elected leader more concerned about her own survival.

Events conspire.  As has been observed, rioting is more common in the summer than the winter, and if nothing is done by May and her cabal to deflate the anger and rage then there is an increasing probability that social breakdown will occur.  Opposition politicians have been much more effective in acknowledging the risks - they will need to step up further to link the consequences of current policy with the need for change and reform, including the "unpalatable" message that society requires contributions and integrity from all levels.  Anything less will, over time, be seen as copping out and allowing the spivs, fraudsters and idiots of the Tory ascendancy off the hook - and the consequences will be unimaginable.