Category Archives: USA

G7…well, well, well!! Some Folk are out of their depth.

Body Language eh?

Note Angela Merkel  leaning forward. Note Trump staring into middle distance hoping she will go away.

And my favourite part of the shot. The Arch-Pest Bolton standing open mouthed not sure what to say.

This is never, ever going to grow old.

 

Go Girl Go

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It’s Alright, Your 2nd Amendment Constitutional Rights Are Safe.

lamentingguy

On the 14th February 2018 some more young people, this time in a school in Florida lost their lives…

I doubt if the fact that the 2nd Amendment to the US constitution is being stoutly defended by the NRA is of any comfort to survivors and relativesBlood-On-Hands

4th July. It’s Yours By Right USA

Polyester-American-Flag-ER-2

4th July

 

The United States of America, North America, America, USA, and this is your national holiday and this will be the first one I can recollect in which some Americans experience unease or regret about celebrating for they are ashamed of the current circumstances in which they perceive their country is in. I am sorry for those folk that they must feel this way and it would be disingenuous not to say it is easy to understand why. To have the holder of the office of president who has no political experience, has a questionable reputation and seems to have scant regard for the population as a whole must be a bitter experience, particularly when as sometimes happens in democracies the winner was not the one with the majority of  votes cast.

I could continue, writing at length about the despicable and shameless displays of bigotry and hatred which weak-minded folk claim is their right to free speech, while conveniently ignoring the duty of an adult to behave responsibly and maintain the stability of a community. But why should a sully the name of this day of celebration?

Let us look at all The United States of America and not a warped minority.                              ;

Yours is a young nation. We have 1776 as an expedient year of your birth, but your forebears discontent and then anger must have been growing long before that; let’s say three hundred years in the making. In terms of many nations you have only just begun; say four hundred years ago as a start, large scale of immigrations and constantly in waves. People restless to escape strictures of their homelands, looking for space to start afresh. Not much in age in comparison to other nations. It could be argued that you are still in the process of settling down, still learning to gell, but of course that does not always happen. There are enough examples in the world; all fractured places, their prejudices and ignorance used by more powerful neighbours as means to dominate and exploit. Let that be a warning. History never sleeps.

There is a fondness in the world to list the evils of the USA as if every other nation has a spotless record. There are injustices, there are crimes, and many have been carried on under a diluted blaspheming of the phrases ‘freedom of speech’ or ‘constitutional right’. But the folk of the USA learnt all these tricks from their ancestors in the ‘old countries’. As reprehensible as they are they are not American inventions. And in the USA brave, noble and determined folk fought long and hard against these injustices to the extent that they are now viewed as abhorrent though like all things precious that won must be fought for, always lest the evil, the weak and the stupid corrode them.

To return to that ‘respectable prejudice’ so indulged in, say the UK ,to be scornful of Americans as indulgent, self-absorbed, somehow not as intelligent. What sheer ignorance these folk spout. Need I take the time to list American novelists, poets, composers, artists, humourists, actors, playwrights, scholars, humanitarians, scientists, musicians, innovators, philosophers, inventors and so forth? Well obviously, I would have to because these tiny people have never heard of them!

But let us consider two facets. Let us think of these times, these past few years. We consider the return of the hate and ignorance, of the bombast and the puerile, the venal and the scavengers. They have crawled over your nation before; but they have been pushed back into corners, they have been exposed and found wanting. Unable to stand before the power of the ordinary, the generous of heart and spirit, the courageous, the decent, even the foolhardy. Oh, these wretched folk have brought their ‘populous crowds’, but all their efforts withered beneath the light and the heat of the ordinary Americans and these lesser folk were obliged to slink back into their corners. America look at the those myriad of gifted folk who have come from your ranks, and what can these corrosive elements offer in response, but to stew into their own bitter concoctions?

So let me tell you about you friendliness, your generosity, your willingness to help, your enthusiasm, your thoughtfulness. All these aspects which I see daily on WP. Let me mention your constitution and your separation of powers, which at the end of the day will bend any group of malefactors to the joint will. You have stood up and fought before, you have brought them down. You in your many groups with your differing views have come together and breathed life back into a flagging system, the result may not have been perfect, may have been ragged around the edges but it worked.

You are still in the making though, your states, your communities are in constant change because of your youth, and your myriad cultures coming together. You have made much progress, despite those who would try and drag you into some past based on servility to wealth and privilege and false divisions based on colour or religion. There may well come a time when the pressures will be too great for a 300,000,000+; 5 time zone nation to hold. That is actually no disgrace, nations like land masses break and  re-form. You may end up separated from some small bitter little enclaves where folk pretend they are free while being owned by larger powers. But this I know; the true United States of America will hold strong, yes it may be slightly smaller; it happens. But as a people you can stand proud and hold fast to humanity.

So meet with your loved ones, your friends and your neighbours, celebrate those matters and concepts you hold common, share friendship, community and love. Make your 4th of July 2017 a time when you say ‘No more hate. No more division’. You are worth it.

Happy 4th July USA.

Intolerance- I would have you rot.

Good day to you all. There are 200 + followers to this blog (thank you one and all). Now many of you recently arrived will be familiar with the quirky, idiosyncratic, affable posts.

That author’s not at home today. You’ve got me instead. At this stage I would advise you there will be (A) Unsettling political ideals stated (B) Harsh and unforgiving opinions (C) Stern and iron clad condemnatory statements (D) One of two profanities used with surgical care. (E) This post may upset everyone that reads it. (F) It’s very long 2000+ words- I may have overdone it- don’t care.

The Hate and The Intolerance. A Waste

The rage and the outrage, turned into screaming obscenity and masked as justifiable by The Left. The swift urge to hide behind Freedom of Speech, wilful mis-reading of a Constitution, Bible or political creed by The Right. What a complete and utter waste of time by one and all!

Sad and infuriating to observe the willingness to fall into step with the terminally stupid, the twisted hate-mongers and the snake-oil merchants all peddling their brands of Intolerance, because oh yes indeed, nothing sells so good a Venom and Fear. US Elections, Brexit and now Frexit (France goes to elections shortly). Another period of history where the histrionic and the hysterics have their say revelling in the attention while their followers puff out their chests and make proud with ‘Not In My Name’ banners or fatuously proclaim ‘Liberty’ (for themselves of course). Lots of shouting but very little talking. What fools. What blind, useless, destructive, criminal waste of energy and endeavour. In a world thank is screaming out for communal effort and far-sighted strategy here we have the unedifying spectacle of whole populations dithering, spitting and scrapping over meaningless picky bits of irrelevance.

One Solution: Then Another

Small wonder then that when I view Orwell’s ‘1984’ I think to myself: ‘Not a bad way to run a country. Need to drop the ‘Hate’ interludes and replace it with ‘Community’. Lighten up a bit on the party members (bread and circuses thing). Oh yeh Room 101, just talk at them, on and on and on; that’ll work’ . Oh yes, dear reader my views are very austere Left-Wing, none of your fluffy ‘Freedom and Rights’. For me: Civil Rights come with Civil Responsibilities. You abuse the latter, you seriously lose the former. There is a simple equation to this, we live in complex societies with many layers of beliefs, outlooks, social styles, advantage (or lack of) and financial inequality; these cause many pressures which must be kept in check and then the energy syphoned off- (social programmes folks, we all put in- no exceptions, everyone to the best of their ability.). Hate- can’t change Humanity, but The State can certainly weed out and supress the corrosion and its sources, and the State can ensure that the best doctrine for social stability can be indoctrinated.

I daresay this is all very disturbing for many, and no doubt if many of the more strident folk on social media were to read this they would be in Abuse Mode in seconds. To the latter my answer is a shrug and the response. ‘Well you had better do something to prove that people of different views, outlooks, races and beliefs can get along together. Prove your maturity. Talk. Discuss. Listen. Learn. All of you.’ . Because historically, in terms of centuries the wheels will turn, the engines re-calibrated and is response to this rowdy negativity will come authoritarianism, and many will welcome it, for the seeming stability it brings, and as for the rest, you will be consumed by the system, fresh and supported.

I’m Calling Out The Culprits

Now I’ll only deal with the US & The UK because those are the nations I am most familiar with. The US comes first because you are the younger:

USA  

Firstly I will not really bother with President Trump. He is where he is because a large section of the population both for and against him are not thinking straight. Putting an amateur in charge? If he hadn’t been around those who voted for him would have invented him.  He has to learn pretty fast, novelty can soon wear off, and the might which is the state has many tricks up its sleeve to immobilise him.

Anyway, to the population. It’s difficult to know where to start really. Apparently, there is an Alternative Right, well in the UK we had an Alternative Left; they seem to be very similar. Loud, aggressive (but only to those they can bully or out-number), narrow minded and much given to wrapping up prejudices in some nebulous excuse of ‘The Right To Free Speech’. Looking at the US these seem to be the very folk which The Founding Fathers did not wish to give the vote to ‘The Mob’. There’s some little person scrabbling about the place claiming the ‘Right To Be Offensive’ ; I’m guessing someone who wouldn’t have been allowed to sign the Declaration of Independence. Then we have those who have bought into the notion that every Muslim is a threat and it would only take a few in their town to ruin it. This is of course just what IS and the rest love, white folk picking on Muslims, ideal recruiting fodder. Naturally I could go on about the misogynists, the old fashioned racists (all nicely packaged these days) and my brother and sisters in Christ who somewhere along the way decided that Jesus didn’t really mean you should love everyone and not call everyone a fool, he was obviously referring to Fine, Upstanding Folk. Somewhere mixed up and dragged along with these tawdry groups are folk who really just want everything to be Peaceful, Quiet and Prosperous. These I say, talk to the other side, you don’t really belong amongst the haters. Use you God-given Hearts and Minds.

Now my good friends on The Left or the Liberal Wing. It is very difficult in these times to make your voices heard, seeing as how most of Talk Radio seems inhabited by those paid for their capacity to shock and upset , and of course the Net has rank and festering pools of Hate. The problem you have is similar to those on the Right, you are listening to the wrong folk, the Strident who love to preach to the converted, because they love the feedback. Your tactical problem is you will keep denigrating the entire opposition as if they all lacking in intelligence all are bigoted and quite frankly you seem to think they are all weird. Not so, they are simply you on the other side of the mirror. Why are you not embracing the Dignity of the Silent Protest or the Reasoned Argument. Yes, it is difficult, but shouting is the easy and quite wrong answer. Yes I know the moment you appear above the parapet you get labelled Social Justice Warrior or worse. I did my time both in the UK Civil Service and on a Religious Discussion Site hijacked by the more venomous type of atheist who adhere to the Book of Dawkins and take it from me the only way you get through is by quiet and reasoned argument; some of course will not get it because they don’t want to. But don’t follow the offensive ones, like the guy allegedly an academic who stole the Sacred Host from a Catholic Church and messed with it and burnt a copy of the Quran to demonstrated his bigotry against religion. And there are those in crowd who physically attack the single member of the opposition (usually a woman I notice).

Talk together everyone, lest you watch your country separate into minor nations because that is just what History has in store for you if you don’t learn.

UK

I am less forgiving here. The Isles have been through many trials and tribulations over a two thousand years and damn’d well should have learnt by now.. The native folk of many regions have often vented their ignorant anger on minorities. Less us not hear about the The Irish, or The Scots or The Welsh or The English and their trials, none of us are innocent and the total victim. We are all guilty, mostly of selective history and doing whatever suited us at the time.

So now, these Isles with no merchant fleet to speak of, a navy that is very small, an industrial base which is mostly overseas owned, relies on an overseas supply on energy and communally insist that we can’t possibly use any homegrown energy sources lest they impinge on our back gardens; whose income comes from the unformulated world of finance has now decided that if we set the clock back the The Glorious Revolution of 1688-89 then all will be well because we can magic up the conditions to make us a great trading powerhouse. Some of course blame all the foreign people that have come here for everything that has gone wrong which is an excuse so old but regrettably not worn out.

But we are also quite inventive in our spite here. In fact we are far more enterprising that our fellows in ignorance in the US, we don’t have a written constitution to play with. However, us Brits are much more inventive. Particularly my comrades on the Left; The Fashionable Left that is.

Of course prejudice is a nasty thing and we wouldn’t want to be associated with those horrible people on The Right, but fear not we can hide behind the masks of Social Conscience. We can indulge in an old tradition in these Isles of Anti-Semitism, but these days we can say it’s because we object to the Israeli Government. It’s so much more easy than trying to make common cause with the Israeli opposition groups, and there are Jews here to  pick on. Naturally it’s nothing personal because we all know they support the Israeli Govt. We would be horrified to be associated with attacks on Muslim folk as individuals, but of course we can rail against Islam because look how ‘they’ treat their women. They all do it y’know. None of those women wish to dress like that, they have been brain-washed by their men. And of course we are on safe ground by being offensive to religion overall because it has been the cause of more wars and abuse than anything else in the whole wide-world. We know, we read it on a web-site.

And finally, the Left can indulge in some real open racism by picking on Americans. We can call them stupid, lazy, ignorant, superstitious (religion) obsessed with guns and every single adult for being responsible for Donald Trump, because we are witty, astute, informed having spent many minutes reading inanities on web-sites. And no obviously we didn’t mean those of the minorities, no  we have been mis-understood.

Coming back to reality there is nothing so sad in the UK as someone on the Left displaying a crass ignorance by generalising; unless you count those who enthusiastically agree with them.

Conclusion

So what do I know then? Apart from my history. Well I know about Intolerance and Prejudice I’ve suffered them but more importantly I’ve indulged and am still prey to them. Oh yes, Racial Prejudice, small -time irritation but some standards, but it’s there no the less. I don’t even have excuse of being born into it, I acquired it as an adult. NO I don’t make a virtue of that. It’s a weakness to be fought against, to be erased. It is an offense unto God. I written all these words under a cloud of hypocrisy. The details are secret, because I do not wish to cause offense to anyone by detailing this moral crime of which I am guilty. The internal battle goes on; it will not win.

I could go on a lot longer, but it would be a bit self-indulgent.

In conclusion I would thank you all who’ve read this. And if anyone wants to rant at me in justifiable outrage, please do, as Mr Bennett said in Pride and Prejudice “I am at my leisure”

An Open Invitation concerning Presidential Inauguration Day 20th January 2017

I have read statements as to why this is either a step on the road to return to liberty or the greatest disaster to fall upon Humankind since 3rd September 1939 (which kind of forgets the Chinese who had had a few years of misery already). There have been the usual encounters with hyperbole and the sense that the writers are preaching to their own group. Now since President Elect Donald Trump is not the sort of person to engender a non-committal shrug I must assume we have two specific camps; with those who write professionally and wish to retain their reputations as impartial analysist doing their very best to come across as being so detached as to be positively Spockian. All well and good.

So my next question is along these lines.

Can those of you who voted for Donald Trump explain to me why you reached the conclusion this was the correct choice? Since the media(s) seem to delight in trying to make us paranoid I have add ‘this is not a trick question’ (whatever that is supposed to be). I have a genuine interest in the motivation and the rationale which led to the casting of the vote.

(Now I should warn you I have a nil tolerance for any answers which contain abuse against persons, assertions of alleged wrong doings, conspiracy notions etc, etc. Don’t bother. I- Don’t-Care. Not interested. Off you go, agitate the gravel. You are dealing with someone who has read a lot of history, and History is a stern teacher. And there is no one in Human history who does not carry a string of accusations against them from one group are another, or a list of shortcomings. )

Thus I will be hoping to receive a rational, intelligent, carefully constructed explanation as to why you voted for Donald Trump. Therefore, this should be a positive argument concentrating upon his features.

I would not have posted this if I did not have a genuine interest. These should be times of dialogue and genuine exchanges of information. Shouting, accusations, abuse, YouTube ‘journalism’ & Facebook ranting doesn’t cut it in my own little hard-left socialist / Roman Catholic world.

I await replies, please.

Weather Warning

I am writing words while seated at a borderland. My new watch has ceased to record any measurement, as this came from a respectable merchant the conclusion must be I have wandered into a place of possibilities. Though not a particularly inspiring vista. As far as the eye can see bleak grasslands, stroked by persistent moaning winds, the occasional rise in the ground breaking up the flatness, dark grey cover of cloud so pervasive it does not appear to have motion. Turning in all directions this would appear to be the circumstance for at least as far as the eye can see. This is not a place I would care to spend a night upon, the moon supressed by the cloud would not be able to shed illumination and such an environment would be ideal stalking grounds for things which abide in limited visibilities.

The grass is dry, hard stuff, appears to thrive in a place short on moisture; it is sucking sustenance from somewhere for there is no sign of rock, no earth, nor sound of water. I notice I do not feel chill from the continuing wind. This should be a winter, but the temperature is steady. A sullen, heavy warmth. Not freshened by breeze. Encouraged by the leaden sky.

So if this is a possibility what history brought about its domination?

Wherever this is the place is receptive to my thoughts, for the winds begin to birth voices far off at first, all discordant, becoming shrill as they grow closer. Conflicting. Arguments with neither side listening.

And these myriad angry reeds must have beginnings. So from all horizons come marching ghosts, rank upon rank, unfocused eyes narrowed in hate, mouths twisted in litanies of passions learned by rote.

I fear for I am at the centre where they must meet and will be witness and possibly caught up in their battles, battered about in a storm. For here they come, so close I can make out individual features; the ages, the races, the fashions. All sharing the sterility of confrontation. They meet, but do not see each other, they pass through me, they pass through each other. I am at the centre of a storm of voices and features, but no one sees the other. And on they pass marching over the horizons, away from each other, growing more distant. Once more I am alone.

So how often do these ghosts come back? Drawn by their dry, pointless passions, ever marching towards each other and never meeting. How much time was spent in their mortal spans upon this effort, giving up their potential for joy, love and accomplishment? At what stage did they cease to hold onto the value of Life and give way to this futility. I suppose there must have been conflict, and yet I saw no armed ghosts. Maybe those who took this option blew themselves literally out of existence. Are these hillocks and mounds the remains of cities and other artefacts now covered by the grasses?

So was this how it turns out. Now apocalyptic wastelands, no bones of cities and irradiated colourful vistas, no grotesquely shaped descendants with bizarre cultures. Did those who lived on hate and conflict suck hope and joy out of everyone? Did it become impossible to even live, much less thrive. And when we had finally ceased; weighed down by our depressing, bleak confrontations, had we polluted the world with this particular toxicity so much so that only harsh, leeching basic life continued?

Beneath a dull desolate sky.

We ended.

It would appear, not with a Bang, nor a whimper, just a bitter, derisive curl of the lip.

Who would have ever thought it?   

Hello USA. Let’s talk a bit.

So here we are. President Elect Donald Trump or if something unforeseen happens President Elect Mike Pence (at least I’m assuming that’s what happens if the original President Elect doesn’t make it to Inauguration Day). This and Brexit. Ah what does an old UK socialist, believer in the European Ideal, NATO, Environmental Controls have to say

Well as Al Smith (Governor of New York 4 times. Democrat candidate for pres 1928) said in his campaign against Hebert Hoover, ‘let’s look at the record’ (apparently, he used to say it a lot; he was in the era before a widespread vocal media, so it didn’t come across as a sound-bite or boring)

According to last information I saw the votes worked out as:

Donald Trump: 59,131,310

Hilary Clinton: 59,293,071

Apparently about 55% of the voting population. I won’t go into figures in any more depth, that only invites everyone to get in a fearful tangle of which figures count, which ones don’t and what the figures really mean. (Particularly if you look at them ‘this’ way)

In the UK we have a ‘first past the post system’ for who wins the constituency, differing from the USA electoral college, but both often seem to come out with similar votes. So about 25%- 30% of the voting population get to say how 100% of the whole population are governed. And unless you introduce a compulsory voting system with proportional representation added into the mix that’s roughly how democracy works.

In short a lot of people get disappointed, often badly.

I know, been there, all too often.

But also being in the UK, it’s not really my place to criticise what has taken place, I can’t to go around telling 59,000,000+ people ‘You’re all idiots!’ I don’t know your motivations; I’m not waiting in line for food-hand outs for example. On WP I have encountered Trump supporters who it would seem are from the more moderate thoughtful wing; they use the US constitution as a basis for their case and that can be respected, maybe not agree with but respected. Since FB is rarely on my ‘to go to list’, those on the wacko & racists wings have not polluted by laptop.

This I will say to those who voted for Mr Trump. Ok folks, your choice will be the President of the US in 2017. Now, your duty to your country from your standpoint is to try and convince by rational, logical, civilised and mature discourse everyone else why you feel this choice was a good one. It is also your duty to accept that folk will not agree with you and you must respect that too. Your country is a democracy. You all have this right. You must also ensure that those in your company who preach Hate, Intolerance and Bigotry of any sort are told why they are wrong or excluded from your company. Your country is only as strong as everyone working together. At the risk of sounding like a scare monger, there are parallels with the run up to 1861 here; there probably won’t be the resulting military conflict but a division in smaller nations is not inconceivable and that will leave you diminished. History is like that.

(Though you guys up in Oregon…put those guns away please, not a good idea, it may have worked in the 1770s but has had a pretty poor track record since then. OK you got away with one trial, that’s ‘cause the government played nice, this time, don’t count on that always. If you do feel that strongly some folk might recommend a dignified hunger strike.)

For those of you disappointed, dispirited, depressed, disillusioned and afraid. Yes, I understand; Thatcher’s Britain was no fun place for me or mine. We had to dig in. We tried not to turn on each other. In my government service job I bended rules which I saw fit to bend. Do not make the mistake of turning on someone just because they voted the other way; get to know them; if they prove to be unpleasant, bigoted or just plain wackos then, yeh don’t tolerate them. If you find you have a lot of common ground, work together. Thatcher did not believe in compromise….Junk!!….We all have to work together. Protest if you feel you must, but I would recommend dignity, silence, civility. It is hard to be critical or lampoon the one who stands there with dignity for their beliefs, who turns their anger into a firm solid quiet intention. My son put up a very wise statement on FaceBook as the first protests turned violent, referencing to the hatemongers who love this sort of thing “Don’t feed them. Starve them”. It is a common fact of elections that there are those who will become disappointed or disillusioned with their choice. Don’t jibe, jeer or ‘toldja’. Listen, convince them onto your side. Never give up. Nurture your communities. Work with each other. Work with ‘them’.

Anndd my post cannot be all conciliatory and measured commentary I have to have my rant

For all of you in the USA I would like to apologise for the usual UK crew of americaphobics. The ones who post up about Stupid America and Typical America…WTF???! There is no ‘typical’ America and as for ‘Stupid’…oh please by what chart do you denigrate at population of 200,000,000+?. One of the more embarrassing aspects of being a Brit (apart from, Soccer Hooligans & Personalities up set up camp in the US and blather) is listening to some ‘satirists’ ‘astute’ commentators or fashionable stand-up comics make ‘witty’ remarks about the US and in doing so display a lamentable ignorance of what makes your country groove-on; they come across as quite xenophobic & racist just trotting out and playing with folks’ prejudices (oh yes, and making money at the same time). Thus a sad number of folk who wish to appear political savvy repeat what they hear by rote, and having done that do sweet ‘Naff’ All about reaching out to US citizens….pathetic!!

I wish you all well.  I personally have ‘got your back’.

Hey! You Lot! Yeh Press…talkin’ to you!!

An Address To The Two Houses of….?