While I Was Away 183


Here are some brief comments on events while I was busy biographing:

Prince William to wed Kate Middleton

I really don’t give a fuck. Have you noticed he is strangely getting less bald? They’ll both be middle aged and ugly before they come to the throne. Or hopefully not.

Coalition launch “Starve the feckless” scheme

Multiple orgasms at the Mail, Express and Telegraph at launch of amusingly impossible policy guaranteed to increase crime rate.

Demonstrators trash Tory Party HQ

I don’t really approve of riot as people get hurt. But the only thing that makes me angrier than the tuition fee increases, are the NUS leadership hacks who support New Labour who brought in tuition fees in the first place.

Interesting moral conundrum as to whether pre-emptive murder of NUS executives can be justified. Looking at Straw, Clarke and Aaronovitch, it is certainly a debate worth having.

Possible voluntary reduction in London bankers’ bonuses from £7 billion to £4 billion and then £3 billion later. Anyone remember why the public finances are bankrupt? The bonuses are justified by record profits based on funding and administering government debt, which was incurred by governments borrowing to give to the bankers. What?


183 thoughts on “While I Was Away

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  • Lucretius

    @SS

    “Luc’, I think you are …”

    Civis Romanum sum.

    “Russia was (and is) the biggest country in the world. So, if you build a railway line from one end to the other and plant grain all long it, you will have built the longest/biggest railway-line/field in the world. This means nothing.”

    Waddayermean “nothing.”

    Railway development was a prerequisite for Russian economic development and it happened. It was crucially important.

    And the statistic is not Gordievesky’s.

    And the railway was not like Canada’s, a straight line from one side to the other. It was a vast network. A huge investment.

    http://www.travelbyrail.net/RussianRailways/HistoryandMaps/

    “I think your argument actually strengthens the argument against absolute (Russian-style, or Bourbon, or Jacobite) monarchy…”

    Well I hope so. The problem with monarchy is that you’re bound to end up with a moron on the throne — surrounded by sycophants urging them to ever greater imbecility. So yes, any monarchy, other than a largely ceremonial one, will degenerate into a disaster for the people.

    But Prince William, if he ever occupies the throne, will do so as a constitutional monarch with the right to question, to advise and to warn, but not to command. So if he is a bit of a dim-witted soldier, so what. Serving in the military is an honorable profession and a rather hazardous one. When in comes to flying helicopters in a battle zone, I say rather Wills than me.

    Someone truly bright might not want the job. And as Jon, remarked above, Kate seems like a nice girl. How can one not wish them well.

  • Suhayl Saadi

    And Mussolini made the trains run on time. And the British built the railways in India. And I had a Hornby model railway set once.

    Actually, for what it’s worth, I don’t think Prince William is “dim” at all. I don’t know where you might have got that idea about him.

  • Roderick Russell

    Lucretius, if I may quote what you wrote on November 23, 2010 7:37 PM – “So yes, any monarchy, other than a largely ceremonial one, will degenerate into a disaster for the people”

    I would emphasize your phrase “other than a… . ceremonial one” and that’s just the problem. It’s not just ceremonial even though we are taught that. The Monarchy in Britain wields huge real power, unelected and often unseen ?” its direct influence over the security services, or the establishment, or the powers of the crown many of which are ill defined and beyond parliamentary oversight. I do not say it is necessarily the Monarch herself who exercises these powers, but courtiers, privy councilors, senior officials many of whom are unaccountable and unseen.

    The truth is the monarchy has very real power. It is just because we don’t have a ceremonial only monarchy that I favour a republic to avoid “a disaster for the people” as Luc so succinctly puts it.

  • Luc

    @SS

    “I don’t think Prince William is “dim” at all.”

    I expect you’re right. I merely said “if”, I didn’t mean to imply that I thought he is dim. Far from it.

    @RR

    “The Monarchy in Britain wields huge real power, unelected and often unseen…”

    Well, if so, someone needs to write another chapter to “The English Constitution.” As it is, whereof I do not know, thereof I cannot speak, as Wittgenstein might have put it. Anyhow, this does not refute the case for constitutional monarchy, though it raises the question of whether Britain has one.

  • Roderick Russell

    Luc – There is no English Constitution, not even a British one. Unwritten, it’s designed to be a muddle so that those who hold the levers of power can bend it to suit. Badgot (Sp?) in trying to peer through the fog of Britain’s unwritten constitutional, 150 years ago, was just trying to make the best of this British muddle as The Economist so often does.

  • Luc

    “There is no English Constitution”

    I guess that’s a matter of opinion.

    Lord Salisbury maintained that the essential feature of the English Constitution was that the Government do nothing of which the majority of the public strongly disapprove.

    On that definition, Britain’s involvement in Iraq was, arguably, in breach of the constitution. Unfortunately, there is no mechanism whereby such a breach can be punished.

    My own preference would be to give every citizen a button such that if pressed by a majority within, say, a 24-hour period, it would cause the Prime Minister to receive a sharp electric shock in the seat of the pants, the intensity of the shock to be increased day by day until the public relents. Alternatively, the PM could be sent to the Tower during people’s pleasure.

    You are probably right about the importance of secretly deployed influence. In talking about it, however, the problem is it’s a secret. So what can one say? As you know, there are endless Web sites devoted to conspiracy theories some of which may be correct. The problem is there seems no certain way of telling which.

    According to Thomas Macaulay, in the 18th century, “secret service” money was routinely employed to buy votes of MP’s. Has there been any change since then, and if not, who controls those funds?

  • Suhayl Saadi

    Good points, all, Luc. I particularly enjoyed reading your proposal for electrification of the Prime Ministerial underwear. I think there ought to be a study group set up to look at this excellent proposal, a ‘consultation’ process and then implementation on 1st April 2011.

  • Luc

    “I think there ought to be a study group…”

    Yes, we could recruit ex-PM’s Blair and Brown as test subjects.

  • Njegos

    Craig:

    This is off-topic but please do a post about the current TSA-generated hysteria in the USA. I think it is important to raise awareness before the British government tries to follow suit with officially sanctioned porno scanners and groping (and they will try!)

    Rgds,

    Njegos

  • Suhayl Saadi

    Njegos, I agree – it’s not really off-topic, actually. See current (‘Goebbels’) thread re. links to two articles from Counterpunch on the subject.

  • Suhayl Saadi

    ‘ere come the spammies, whammies, bammies

    Thank you mammies

    Goose-marching thru’ the night

    God bless America (and The Queen)

    And Wills ‘n’ Kate an Posh ‘n’ Becks

    Everything will be alright

  • Lucretius

    @ghd iv styler

    Is that really your name. How is it pronounced?

    “Why does the BBC, the Guardian etc. etc. insist on paying war criminals for their self-serving views with such regularity?”

    Because the BBC is owned by the war criminals and because the Guardian has always been for war criminals of a sufficiently leftist tendency.

    The Guardian is owned by the Scott Trust, which is headed by Liz Forgan ex Managing Director of BBC Radio. So that helps explain the BBC (i.e., Government propaganda line)/Guardian axis.

    The mandate given the Guardian by the Scott Trust is to conduct the paper “on the same lines and in the same spirit as heretofor.”

    Essentially, that means along Fabian socialist lines, which in turn means New World Order (see book of that title by Fabian, H.G. Wells, published in 1912) and staunch advocacy of communist tyranny, which is seen as the model for the NWO.

    Evidence? Well I’m not writing a thesis here, but here are some points.

    During the 30’s C.P.Scott the then Editor of the Gruniard refused to publish Malcolm Muggeridge’s dispatches from Russia giving an eye-witness account of the forced mass starvation in the Ukraine — the Holodomor.

    During WW2, the Guardian’s principle editorial writer on foreign affairs was communist sympathizer and persistent advocate of UK-Soviet alliance, A.J.P. Taylor.

    In 2002, the Guardian, true to its NWO agenda, published this article by Robert Cooper, Tony Blair’s foreign policy advisor:

    http://observer.guardian.co.uk/worldview/story/0,11581,680117,00.html

    The article contains a link to a much longer paper in which Cooper advocates global empire by means of pre-emptive war, etc., etc.

    So, yes, not only does the Guardian pay war criminals, it strongly approves of war criminals, as long as their murderous propensity drives the NWO on socialist lines.

  • Suhayl Saadi

    Alfred – Luc – Blair et al are not socialists. These people are not socialists. They are actually transnational authoritarian capitalists who will draw on the worst aspects of of ‘socialism’ and the worst aspects of ‘capitalism’ to maintain their (and their elites) power and wealth. They are also simply war criminals.

    In many ways, it seems to me, it’s really about authoritarianism vs libertarianism. It’s about having real market freedom versus cartelisation and de facto monopoly capitalism. Socialism – of any form – is pretty much dead anyway.

  • Suhayl Saadi

    I think it (at 12:05am) is a not-spambot, Lucretius. The phrases seem familiar from another thread, possibly.

    ghd-whatsit, if you’re not a fake spambot, talk to us – and hello, good to meet you! If you are a fake spambot, as I wrote a few weeks ago, then just gather up your bones and go to the ‘other place’ whence you came.

  • Luc

    “Blair et al are not socialists. These people are not socialists. They are actually transnational authoritarian capitalists who will draw on the worst aspects of of ‘socialism’ and the worst aspects of ‘capitalism’ to maintain their (and their elites) power and wealth.”

    I’d agree they’re not socialists if you will agree that neither Hitler nor Stalin were socialists, though both claimed to be — one a national socialist, the other an international socialist. All any of them cared about was achieving maximum power by any means. And they were enthusiastically supported by Fabians such as HG Wells, GB Shaw and Manchester Guardian editor CP Scott, all of whom shared Blair’s enthusiasm for global empire — which suits the corporate interests that bought Hitler, owned Blair and pull the strings on their puppet Obama.

  • Suhayl Saadi

    I’d agree – Hitelr and Stalin were not socialists either. Those socialists, monarchists (re. Hitler) and others (lots of people in the UK and elsewhere admired Hitler, Mussolini and Stalin – and Mao) who supported them were either as disingenuous and mendacious as them, or else were misguided and made fundamental errors of judgment. Authoritarianism – the systematised desire to control people and attain power by any means – of course is not limited to those who term themselves ‘socialist’; it’s just that the paradox seems more apparent in those cases.

  • Lucretius

    “Authoritarianism – the systematised desire to control people and attain power by any means – of course is not limited to those who term themselves ‘socialist’; it’s just that the paradox seems more apparent in those cases. ”

    I don’t see a paradox. Socialism embodies the concept of the dictatorship of the proletariat. The Bosheviks accepted this, the Fabians accepted this, Tony Blair accepted this, as outlined in the paper by Robert Cooper that I linked to yesterday.

    Some socialists have held that the communist utopia could be achieved by purely democratic means, for example, Sir Richard Ackland, Liberal MP for Devon North (1930’s). (He had the extraordinary idea, published in his book “Unser Kampf,” that the war would end with the German people refusing to fight if Britain turned communist. He worked it out to the penny, how much everyone would receive when the ill-gotten gains of the capitalists were shared out. However, even he realized that the people in charge — the commie elite, who held the monopoly on violence — would have to be paid many times as much as a worker).

    But this is an illogical and impractical idea. How are you going to make the individual of superior looks, energy, and intelligence accept the same rewards in life as the individual of inferior looks energy and intelligence? By a combination of ruthless violence ande all-pervasive and mind-destroying propaganda, obviously.

    For all reasonably intelligent socialists, the New World Order is, was and always has been a Communist dictatorship. Thus H.G. Wells’ New World Order was the same as Tony Blair’s New World Order, which is the same as the New World Order of the EU, of NATO and the United Nations.

    What we are seeing now is surely the end game. We are seeing the people of the United States, supposedly the great imperialist, capitalist exploiters of the world, being subjected by the TSA to the same program of sexual humiliation as employed by the military at Abu Ghraib. If Americans submit to this grotesque treatment, why not the whole world?

  • ingo

    ideologies and dogmas, after trying them in various corners of the globe for the last 100 years, all have failed their societies when measured with the values of sustainability, intelligence and efficiency within systems.

    Our consumerist habits and enthrallment, our perceptions and dependenciesd one or other exploitative habit are paramount, ueber alles, nothing more seems to matter more.

    The wall fell, nuclear disarmament was all the rage, but military spending went up?

    The end game, fatalism in a box, delivered to us by the designers of Bretton woods.

    Does anybody wonder why kids go apeshit?

    Unless the world s financial system are reformed and represent the real assets, realte to the impact investments creates on land, we will carry on running around like headless chickens.

  • Suhayl Saadi

    Lucretius, the convolutions by which you arrive at the conclusion that NATO strives to achieve a Communist utopia seems to me an attempt to squeeze everything which you consider ‘bad’ into a box labelled, ‘Bad’. In this canon, ‘Socialist=Bad. Therefore, everything bad must be socialist’. It’s flawed logic and seems almost a reflection of the sort of logic used by ideologues – inclduing socialist ideologues.

    I mean, Cooper’s attempt to portray colonialism as a salve for chaos is laughable. What he calls ‘the cooperative empire’ is really just a reiteration of liberal imperialism – the supposedly beneficent calling of the British Empire.

  • Suhayl Saadi

    What people like Cooper don’t seem to consider is that it is precisely imperial policies that actually cause the chaos in the first place. This is not ‘dictatorship of the proletariat’ (whatever that means nowadays), this (Cooper’s suggestion and also the extant situation)is dictatorship of the arms dealers. Let’s have no ‘dictatorships’ at all! Now there’s a radical suggestion, eh?

  • Suhayl Saadi

    Are you the ghost of Lawrence of Arabia, Lawrence? If so, I would advise you to avoid motorcycles unless you are acompanied by Glenn, who is an expert on such machines.

    My question to you is this:

    What is the eighth pillar of stupidity?

  • Luc

    “the convolutions by which you arrive at the conclusion that NATO strives to achieve a Communist utopia …”

    My point is simply that all globalists are on the same track — to a global tyranny which you can call what you want. It will be no more socialist than the Soviet Union, and no more imperialist than the Soviet Union. Amusing to see that Vidkun Quisling was perhaps the first advocate of the EU:

    http://www.lewrockwell.com/orig6/laughland4.html

    You, Suhayl, are I am afraid a leftist globalist who thinks all will be right with the world when the rich are pulled down and everyone has a brown skin, which is all well-intentioned and totally destructive rubbish. It is pathetic illusion of lib-lefties of the world over who haven’t a clue as to what makes a society or what drives a man.

  • Suhayl Saadi

    I agree with your point, Luc – para 2, very well put.

    But your point in paragraph 4 is just pure panto. Although Blue Mink’s (Cook Greenaway’s) 1970 song, to which Alan ‘Colombia’ Campbell and I recently referred in reference to aguardiente, Conradian climes and rumpy-pumpy among the races, was a good anthem and a sentimentally attractive pop lyric, it’s an inaccurate assessment of what would happen if, literally, all the world’s people were put in one place and left to interbreed. Furthermore, I never said, “Pull down the rich”.

    In truth, I will not be satisfied, I will not rest, until everyone has a bright green skin and speaks like David Icke. I will not lay down my head ‘pon the people’s rock until top-grade snooker tables fill the houses of the proletariat!

  • Luc

    “I will not rest, until everyone has a bright green skin and speaks like David Icke. I will not lay down my head ‘pon the people’s rock until top-grade snooker tables fill the houses of the proletariat! ”

    You’re kidding — I hope. I don’t mind the green skin, but talking like David Icke would be too bad. Why is it the British are the only English-speakers unable to speak the English language in a pleasant way suggestive of some degree of literacy?

    I’m glad that in your scheme of things the rich will be preserved — preserved in formaldehyde, hopefully. But forget the snooker tables. The poor must make do with cheap gin and cigarettes to sweeten their lives.

  • Suhayl Saadi

    Indeed, it seems likely that the doyen dame of panto, Dame Pauline Neville-Jones (who is most definitely BEHIND US ALL and behind every post-box as well!), is eager to have rich and poor alike remove their pants before ever-vigilant eyes of the airport scanner. The ultimate leveller? Eureka! Europa! NATO! In the name of… Angrysoba! Dame Pauline Panto Jones is a socialist!

    !!Power to the Peepers!!

  • Luc

    Picts, Picti, the painted people, thinking of whom, suggests the perfect way to foil the airport scanners and gropers: Travel naked but decently painted, using either woad or if woad is unavailable at your local supermarket, blue food coloring.

    For design tips see:

    http://www.life.com/image/50690152

    The severed heads, presumably, are those of airport security staff unable to refrain from attempting a needless grope.

  • technicolour

    “How are you going to make the individual of superior looks, energy, and intelligence accept the same rewards in life as the individual of inferior looks energy and intelligence? By a combination of ruthless violence ande all-pervasive and mind-destroying propaganda, obviously.”

    Or by accepting that handsome is as handsome does, possibly.

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