Politics, The ZZZ Factor

This should make rather simple but fun reading for you, dear reader, I wished to take a moment during the campaigning and ‘promises’ that were made, along with some less than statesmanlike behaviour from our Prime Minister (see attached article and video), the only thing I can do to stop myself from exploding with increasing rage is to move my thoughts on to the reason that this article is being written, actually the reason why this blog actually exists….Politics.

Prime (Minister) Example

Now, in the broadest sense of the word, Politics affects all of us, beyond the promises, vows and manifestos, behind the Party Political Broadcasts and glad-handing moments, the sound-bytes or press junkets, it is quite simply a subject that should be remembered as, beyond party politics and divisions, something that, at the end of the day, has a direct influence on all of us.

THat is why I called this particular article the ZZZ Factor, because people, by and large are either bored, exhausted, weary, jaded or even uninterested in politics, this is not an overwhelming sensation but there is a large enough demographic out there to make this individual, this lowly writer and bystander, feel as though Politics in this generation is a apathetic subject, there is no great feeling of interest, curiosity or such like emotions, though the saddest aspect of this is that, with no great feeling of interest, the politics is being left to the elder generations, this means, as the older individuals in our society pass on, the interest in politics won’t simply die, it will be extinct.

Now, I am not saying that there aren’t people out there, myself counting as one of them, who find politics interesting, not at all, its just that people like me, who take an interest in this subject, are in the minority, seem to be one of a rare breed of people, though this is not really our fault, this is the problem that countless politicians have tried to solve, David Cameron being one of the more recent by taking to the internet and doing Web-Cam style segments, which just made him look like he was trying too hard.

One aspect that I seem to find when I ask people why they don’t like Politics, is simply that Politicians seem to be out of touch with the people they are trying to represent, our Prime Ministers seem to be Highly Educated and learned figures who come from Eton, Cambridge, Oxford, Edinburgh, it seems very rare that you get someone like say, Alan Johnson, who was stacked shelves in Tesco, was a postman and simply had a working class background, not like the mainstream politicians in Westminster, who seemed, at that time, to be on some form of conveyor belt out of Eton, Cambridge or Oxford.

Another aspect is that people seem to feel that Politics doesn’t affect them, it does, simple answer, though right now this feeling is becoming increasingly divisive, as people here mention that Scotland voted to stay in the EU and is now being taken out of it, then, if you ask certain others, they will recall that the Better Together Campaign, during the Scottish Independence Referendum, stated that Scotland would have to leave the EU if it voted for Independence and would be kept in the EU if it didn’t, this brings me neatly to the main feeling or sentiment I get when people think about politics at this time.

Jadedness, basically people I speak to feel that the Politics is leaping from one election, referendum or vote to the other, a point proven rather distinctly by the fact that the General Election in June will be the fourth time in two years that the electorate will be asked to vote, only the month before, in a few days from now come to think of it, the electorate will be voting in the Local Elections, this must seem to only further the feeling of exhaustion, weariness or apathy, which doesn’t help in the end.

For in the end, it will be down to the next generations, the ones following the current majority, that will have the chance to vote, Politicians seem to focus their policies and talk on the middle-aged and above, very rarely do they look to the age groups below this, only when discussing work, tax, benefits and lifestyle do the politicians widen their aim, though, as a whole, the older generations are the focus.

This is the last reason for apathy and disinterest in Politics, because the politicians fail to understand, talk to (not at), speak for and listen to the younger generations or age groups, recently figures were released that suggested that Food Bank use has reached its highest rate ever, this horrified me, though the politicians promised the world to try and combat this issue, I have always been wary of promises made by politicians, I have a phrase that suits this, Promise the World, deliver the moon.

The question that seems to arise from this is simply, how to interest, attract or gain the participation of a wider audience, those of us who find politics interesting are in the minority, as I mentioned, though how to turn this around is something that I leave for others to find the answer to, I am simply stating that, although you see people gathered behind the likes of Theresa May, Jeremy Corbyn or Tim Farron, there is one crumb of curiosity out of this, sometimes, (as exampled below), things don’t always go smoothly….

Theresa May Aberdeen Anguish

There are times when the polished PR machines that the main parties rely on can grind to an awkward and embarrassing halt, like Ms May found in North East Scotland, though as the article suggested, it was a visit to an SNP stronghold, which actually links to one of my previous topics where I mentioned that MPs very rarely go out and about in rival Constituencies, well, this is one of the issues that proves me wrong but also right, as the expression of awkwardness on Ms May’s face at the end of the video shows that she might reconsider doing something like that again, though I say go for it, do it again, maybe next time you’ll have success, you run this gauntlet every time a campaigning politician goes out on the streets, even when a politician is in a constituency held by their own party, there is no guarantee of a warm reception or even a reception at all.

In closing, although the video above is funny to some, embarrassing to others and rather awkward for the people involved, it is proof that sometimes things don’t go as planned, like in life, though the end of the video fails to show Theresa May passing off the leaflets, half-heartedly hugging the Scottish Conservative leader Ruth Davidson and disappearing from the scene in a convoy of security, I’ll bet if she had done a Gordon Brown, leaving a microphone on or something, then the air would have been blue.

But that is my point, politics shouldn’t be this well-oiled, flowing machine of campaign, press conference, smiling people waving and shaking banners and placards, glad-handing, smiles, glad-handing, speeches, it should be more like real life and, as seen in the video, have more moments when things don’t go well or they meet, as Gordon Brown did, people that don’t agree with their politics, debate in this country is something that is being killed off by the divisive nature of politics now and I may just have a rant about that next time….

Until then…..dear readers.

 

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Brutal Honesty Brings Happiness

I tire of hearing the lies from politicians, ironic seeing as I have this blog and the world seems to just eat them up without any such trouble, though one thing I despise more is that, when politicians go out and about, they seem to hunt in their safe seats, places that they will only be asked straightforward, uncomplicated, pointless questions or treated with niceties and respect, they very rarely travel to sections of the country where the seat or region is held by an opposing party.

Though recently, Ms May apparently went one better, the following article from the Yorkshire Evening Post details that the visit which she orchestrated, a whistle stop style visit to the city of Leeds, left some feeling as though the regular and resident people of Leeds, especially the specific area of Harehills, were not fairly represented or acknowledged, I leave the final decision on such a suggestion to other more determined types, I am simply wishing to point out that although it is safer and probably easier to arrange for a Political leader, not just Ms May, to be surrounded by, visit or meet fellow supporters, in this case well dressed Conservative supporters, the issue is that this is not really fair or right.

Yorkshire Evening Post Article

I know that visiting cities, areas or towns of the UK with a bandwagon of partisan supporters is not a new thing, previous leaders have done similarly but, if you really want to engage with the electorate, you don’t simply glad hand with people that will probably end up voting your way anyway, you meet others, people that might not agree with policies, that might not want to vote for your party or even you, it is all well and good taking to the streets but if you only see what you want to see then you will be made to look like a rose-tinted figure, rather than someone who wants to genuinely make things better for people.

Of course, as I have said before, any opinion I express is my own and therefore should be either ignored or left alone, if you disagree that is your right, the freedom to think or believe differently is one that is secured within the numerous other freedoms we enjoy, though on this point beyond any other, I meet amazing responses, some from people that suggest I am only targeting the leaders of parties that I, as my own political allegiances denounce, are opposition parties, not so, I will openly suggest this for any leader of any political party or any MP, MSP or politician that finds it easier to be surrounded in their constituencies or other locations, by like-minded supporters or party members.

My problem is simply that if you truly wish to engage with the public, if you really want to go and visit the differing constituencies to affect change there, then you shouldn’t be afraid to meet with people who may disagree with you, though saying that I am not advocating or in any way condoning hostility or aggressive behaviour towards an MP or politician, one sad thought that has crossed my mind recently is that we have lost the art of open, friendly and respectful discussion, especially about politics, we seem to be only a step or two from angry words being exchanged, accusations being chucked around and harshness replacing honesty.

In 2014, when the people of Scotland were trying to decide if we wanted independence or not, the words: Nationalist, nationalism, Patriot, patriotism, were all assigned to the sector known as insults, insulting or negative, they became words that were used to mean the worst possible definition of these words, by the end people as open minded as I am, though we were apparently in short supply during this time, were left wondering why the word that we had proudly used, Patriot, was suddenly an ugly term that was linked to words like Insurgent, I am a patriot because I am proud of my country, that I was raised in this country and I feel great pride when I sing the national anthem or see the Saltire, this does not mean that I want to drill along the border and cast Scotland further into the North Atlantic, it is simply a word, like the word Unionist, which the Conservatives are officially known as, though they don’t use this word, why is that, is it because it has been given such ugly definitions like the word patriot or nationalist.

Perhaps, though that is exactly my problem, it is not fair that we have lost the art of having open frank discussions or debates, we should be able to talk or converse about things that are important, about differing political parties without having the discourse collapse into name-calling, threat throwing or mud slinging, we should be able to talk about the things we believe or the points we agree with without fearing being turned into villains, like for those who wanted Independence, we were made to be insurgents, rebels, hell, even terrorists at times, that is not right, though similarly, those who wanted Scotland to stay in the UK were treated at times with equal disdain and antagonism.

My final point is that we should be able to talk, discuss, debate and chat about things without feeling fear or anxiety about being made into the worst possible things, let us have this point back and maybe politics will be given more attention by the wider populace, though the lack of interest shown by others will be a subject for another day.

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Another Electrifying Election

Hello friends, the world has gone to some sort of Groundhog Day phase, for in the third or fourth time in four years, we, the Constituents, electorate and citizens of this fine country of ours, will be given another election from Mrs ‘There Won’t be a General Election’ May, our apparently strong Prime Minister took to the podium outside No10 and declared…..a General Election……woohooo!

Would you like to guess how many times Mrs May denied that she would call a General Election, 7….7 times and here is a recap of all 7.

30th June 2016: Mrs May denies a General Election will be happening, stating that it will next happen in 2020, 4 years from this date.

3rd September: This time she is interviewed by Andrew Marr and he asks ‘No ifs no buts, no snap elections, no changing the law, under you is that absolutely certain?’ Mrs May: ‘I’m NOT going to be calling a snap election’; funny that, one word short of what she recently decreed.

4th October 2016: Another interview where she is asked that she has ‘very clearly’ ruled out a snap election, once again Mrs May denies that this will be altered in anyway.

1st October: Labour apparently put itself into an election footing, whatever that means and Theresa May once again denies that an election will be occurring until 2020, this phrase, this idea, will be repeated again….

7th March 2017: Lord Hague, a former Conservative leader, comes forward and states that there should be an ‘early poll’, Theresa May doesn’t deny this time, a source at No10 does, ‘We have been clear that there isn’t going to be an early general election’.

19th March 2017: This is it, the last time, amazingly it isn’t even a straight denial, Theresa May rubbishes growing speculation on an early General Election as ‘Nonsense’, not the same as straight up denying or rejecting the idea, as she had done in 2016, then, only a handful of weeks later….

18th April 2017: Barely, just barely a month later, Theresa May faces the cameras outside No10 and declares that, after chairing a meeting with the cabinet, that there will be a general election, though one of her lines catches this whole situation perfectly….”I have only recently and reluctantly come to this conclusion,”….you don’t say.

Here’s the thing, although this is an ‘astonishing’ U-turn from a leader who repeatedly stated that there wouldn’t be a General Election until the year 2020, I am more intrigued by what could happen, because if we look at the parties in Westminster as they stand, Labour have lost a lot of ground, the Lib Dems were almost wiped out and the Nationalists, who are disregarded for being focused solely on Independence, have to make themselves appealing on more than the Referendum front.

From a Scottish point of view, there are only a couple of seats that aren’t held by the SNP, one in Edinburgh, another in Orkney and the last in  Dumfriesshire, Clydesdale and Tweeddale, these are the only three, as it stands, that aren’t held by the SNP, though saying that, even a few of the seats taken in the last general election 2….TWO YEARS AGO….could possibly swing to another party but that is yet to be seen, some analysts are already stating that the SNP may lose more than they will gain, they are foreseeing a downfall for the largest party in Scotland.

Labour lost 48 seats last time around, not so much of a kick in the teeth for the party, the majority of these losses came in Scotland where the party, bar one seat in Edinburgh, were all but wiped out, they were once the strong party of the Central Belt, growing up, I remember being told by people that the towns in the central belt were Labour strongholds, though now, it would seem that the strength now belongs to the Nationalists, from a UK perspective, Jeremy Corbyn will have to present some form of difference between his party and the Tories, especially on the matter which may prove to be a deciding factor in the entire campaign….BREXIT!

From a Liberal Democrat point of view, they were 49 seats lighter after the 2015 election, though the remaining few, a measly 8, one of those being the sole Lib Dem seat in Scotland, held by the former Scottish Secretary Alistair Carmichael, the same number of constituencies/seats that the Northern Irish Democratic Unionist Party came away with, means that they will be focused more likely on rebuilding some form of platform on which to attack either of the two larger parties, whoever takes the reins after this SURPRISE election.

The other parties will be hoping to pick up seats in their respective focuses, like Sinn Fein in Northern Ireland or Plaid Cymru in Wales, this may be a tactical move by Theresa May but alas, that was exactly the same thing that people said David Cameron had done with the EU Referendum and, before that, the Scottish Independence Referendum, though one didn’t go the way he wanted and the other may yet happen again, Indy Ref Take 2, though the former led to Mr Cameron stepping down as leader of both the country and his own party, leading to Theresa May becoming Prime Minister.

Barely a year into her time as Prime Minister, the Conservative leader has decided to go back on what she had said and call a General Election, if she does this about something as ‘surprising’ as this, then what else will there be U-turns on.

Considering some are stating that Mrs May called this election because it would strengthen her position when it comes to the Negotiations for Brexit, this may yet fall apart, fail to work out or even cost Mrs May more than she would believe, though let’s wait and see shall we.

No use counting your chickens before they’ve hatched, looked around at the chaos around us and gone back into their eggs, I mean, beyond Mrs May’s U-turn you have Donald Trump sabre rattling with North Korea, launching missiles at Syria, causing tension with Russia, as well as failing to grasp that when you make an agreement with someone, you stick to it, there are reports out today that Trump is prepared to bump the UK down the queue for trade deals, though this is unconfirmed and has not been said by the man himself, though the media in this nation of ours will use any source they can to report stories of frustration like this.

They may yet have a role to play in the coming election too, as we know, the media sector, whether it be rolling news channels or print or even online newspapers will report whatever is happening and make the headlines as eye catching as possible, so, it will be an interesting time, not for us, the citizens and electorate, we’re probably going to go snowblind with all of the elections we have had, four in two years…..!

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New Year Old Problems

HAPPY NEW YEAR friends, hope that 2017 will be a far better and more optimistic year than 2016 turned out to be, though having said that, we kick off the New Year with the Inauguration of Donald Trump, so, either this is a sign of how things will go this year or things will get better from this point on, who knows.

What I do know is that it is getting a little bit depressing hearing what the President Elect thinks of his critics via Twitter, there can be no question that he is media savvy, despite the fact he doesn’t like most of the media, he has, despite this, stuck closely to Social Media, using Twitter to lambast, critique and downright slam others, so far he has attacked Arnold Schwarzenegger and Meryl Streep, one for being an apparently poor replacement in the USA Apprentice show and the other for using her Acceptance Speech at the Emmys to fight back against the bile that had been created in the past few months, Trump called Meryl Streep ‘one of the most overrated actresses in Hollywood’, yet it has been discovered that Trump had lauded her a few years before.

His tweet, for that is how Trump chooses to attack and react to people now, read that not only was Ms Streep an overrated actress but also that she was a ‘Hilary flunky who lost big’, he then went on to deny that he had mocked the disabled reporter stating that he ‘simply showed him groveling when he totally changed a 16 year old story that he had written in order to make me look bad.’ he then ended the tweet by declaring that this was proof of ‘Just more very dishonest media’.

What is it with Trump, does he have the memory of a goldfish, he attacks then it is found that he had either complimented or supported those he attacked in the past, weird right, its like he has no recall ability and takes on anything, he would probably argue with himself if he thought that his own reflection was being critical of him.

There is one thing that made me splutter about this though, Kelly Ann Conway (Trump’s Advisor), her reaction was to be ‘concerned’ about Meryl Streep’s words, that the actress had not used the opportunity to speak out about an incident in Chicago that was broadcast live on Facebook, the torture of a disabled boy by several figures, though to be fair, apparently screaming anti-Trump expletives and forcing the victim’s head into toilet water.

Ms Conway went on to decree that she would like to hear from Ms Streep, to see if she would like to continue to fight for the defence of the disabled, missing the point, she then moved on by stating that her boss was obviously correct in his tweet by referencing 2014, a year, then said that the election was over, Meryl Streep lost and that her audience during the Emmys was of a mind to denounce Trump and that there was no indication about how she felt about the fact that, despite the apparent loss Meryl Streep suffered (having not even run for office?), Ms Conway wondered if it would have been a better opportunity for Ms Streep to state that although she didn’t like the result, Trump is going to be President and that Ms Streep was going to support him.

Ms Conway then continued by stating that ‘this is Hollywood, this is self pity, a lot more self awareness would do them some charm’, Ms Conway continued by stating that ‘talking about how vilified Hollywood is in their gazillion dollar accounts’ making a joke about asking to borrow a couple of these accounts for the Inauguration Ceremony.

Ms Conway works for Trump, she is not impartial, she is probably being paid quite well to continually see the wood for the sawmill, she has since stated that people should look at Donald Trump’s heart and not ‘what’s coming out of his mouth’, her new job, when Trump is sworn in will be Counselor to the President, cushy, protect him and you are well-rewarded.

In a different interview about the ‘mocking’ that Trump was filmed doing, Ms Conway questioned why the interviewer, a Mr Chris Cuomo, wouldn’t give Trump the benefit of the doubt, there is video evidence of Trump’s actions, there is no denying that he is not talking normally, why did he feel the need to state the words he did while acting the way he did, if he had not done this then maybe, Ms Conway, there wouldn’t be as much of a furore over it, but because he did, the idea that Trump deserves the benefit of the doubt is as unlikely as Scotland winning the World Cup.

The actual quote for the above issue, during the interview between Ms Conway and CNN’s Chris Cuomo is in This Link.

So, it seems that if the next few years can be judged on the previous year and the run up to the Inauguration, then its going to be a bumpy ride for the Americans, while we, in the rest of the world will continue to either avoid the idea of thinking about President Trump or just scratch our heads at the thought that a multi billionaire tycoon has become President and, despite promises of making America great again he has filled his cabinet with his buddies, hired his Son in law and Ms Conway to vital posts and has apparently stated that his two sons will take on the business empire he runs while he is away in Washington, interesting, here’s to the next few years then, they promise to be interesting at least.

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Goodwill To All and to all a Good Night

Friends, Christmas is upon us, the timing of this blog may be a slight snippet on the early side to say this but with other things to deal with at this time, I feel that this will be the last blog of 2016, so I wish all my readers a Merry Christmas, Happy New Year and the best of fortunes in 2017, though, just because I can’t leave it without getting into something, let us take a look ahead at 2017 shall we?

In January next year, Donald Trump will be sworn in as America’s newest President, already he is causing some consternation with his choices but on this day, the Inauguration, I think the world will realise that this wasn’t a cheese based nightmare but rather the cold hard reality of the fact that a multi-billionaire, who is seemingly unable to cut ties to his empire during his Presidency, handing control to his eldest sons apparently, Trump will be a rather intriguing watch for those of us who don’t like reality TV, ironic that idea isn’t it seeing as Reality TV made him a well-known name in the 21st Century.

Moving on from the Inauguration, over here, in the divided United Kingdom, Brexit continues to be the top issue, despite the fact that the health service is flailing in the water, there are families just about managing, which has brought about a new political jargon JAM, Just About Managing, there are those of us who are just starting out in life and require some form of help or foundation to kick off from, though that’s all trifling apparently, as the UK government continues to drone on about Brexit, do they even understand that BREXIT IS A MADE UP WORD, its a car crash of two words to form a stupid and before the campaign even started, unknown, non existent term.

The best problem about Brexit is that there is now a rumour going around suggesting that the Government, who are supposed to make decisions on our behalf, don’t know how they will go about Brexit, how long it will take and how it will be either Soft or Hard, what the hell is it, a removal from the European Union or toilet tissue, though right now you could just about wipe your bum with the result, the amount of time it is taking for the UK Government to even make a decision that doesn’t involve the sentence ‘Brexit means Brexit’, has anyone noticed that that sentence, seeing as the term Brexit is made up, that statement means absolutely Scottish Football Association, Sweet F All.

Next to deal with next year, well that would be the follow on elections in France and Germany, where the right wing seems to be on the rise in both cases, the inspiration for this apparent emergence, Nigel Farage’s work in both the Brexit Campaign and his time spent in America as Trump’s lapdog, he believes that the date of the result for the EU Referendum should be known as an Independence Day, ha, that’s not what independence is Nigel, ask the Americans, ask the Argentinians, ask the Canadians, ask the Mexicans (though your buddy Trump might not like that), you could have asked us about our Independence Day if it wasn’t for the fact that for the only time in history ‘without a drop of blood being spilt’ we would have had Independence but for the machinations of Whitehall and the VOW, which wasn’t worth the toilet paper it was written on.

Besides the French and German Elections, the Brexit situation here and the US Presidential Inauguration, there is little going on in the world, bar the ongoing crises in Syria, Southern Europe (mainly the Mediterranean Countries) and certain African nations, you know, the stuff we have turned a blind eye to, why, because we can, the media in our nations can choose to promote or ignore the situations, like the three I mentioned in favour for reminding us how fortunate we are, how much mess is here at home and how chaotic the Political system is, basically I am reminded of V for Vendetta and the Propaganda spouting news network that is seen in that franchise.

So, my friends, with all of this said, MERRY CHRISTMAS!

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To Aide the Bear, the Eagle Dares

America is fast approaching January, that may seem like a weird statement but, considering that in that month, only a few weeks away, the reign of America’s first Black president comes to an end, with the immediate installation of a golden-wigged worrier of sanity, for recently the fight to stop him reaching the White House has involved rumour and hearsay about Russian involvement.

This is the latest in a growing line of attempts to halt Trump’s Inauguration, Russia is accused of fixing the odds in Donald Trump’s favour, though this has received immediate dismissal from the man at the centre of this, his reasoning is a bit like standing in front of a bull with a red leather suit on, its going to cause a lot more trouble than necessary, basically, though he hasn’t said it in so many words, Trump has called the Intelligence Agencies of America, from the CIA to the FBI and all between idiots, seriously, he is claiming that the CIA, who recently launched an investigation into the involvement, if any, of the Russians, in the US Presidential Elections, which the CIA believes there is evidence of, while Trump’s Transition group deny any thought of such an idea.

A Former Head of CIA reacts to Trump’s Denial

Denying the fact doesn’t mean it didn’t happen, Trump’s transition team have questioned, as amazing as this may sound, the credibility of the CIA, I mean seriously, you’re questioning the standards of an organisation that has been around for longer than even Trump has, the idea that you can simply ignore the combined focus and research of the CIA, to simply dismiss it like a small fly buzzing around your head, that’s rather galling.

Of course, there is some support for this, apparently, the founder of Wikileaks, Julian Assange has also denied that the hacked emails, at the centre of this whole issue, even originated, never mind been created by, Russia.

In as many words, this whole situation is just becoming rather depressing, I mean its bad enough that we’re going to have probably the least qualified, least diplomatic and least merciful President ever, never mind this or that side of the 21st Century.

The mere thought that this is going to happen in January is, for a lot of people, depressing and distressing, then of course, there is the thought that the next best candidate was a former First Lady, who is probably a little bit better liked by the general populace, beyond that you now have the idea of a wall (fences in some places) being built between the USA and Mexico, the swift deportation of illegal immigrants, (criminals first apparently, despite the fact that if you’re there illegally, you are in fact breaking the law, therefore you become a criminal), then you see that any of those who were dismissed by previous administrations, those that are outspoken, outdated or outcast are actually being brought into Trump’s Administration.

Lest not forget, it is Christmas at the end of the month, so I am rather hoping that the Nuclear fallout can be left until April, as for the first few months of the New Year, I would like to enjoy some form of peace and joy, so, if the coming Apocalypse can be held off for a bit, that’d be wonderful.

Beyond America’s oncoming freight train of Nuclear Death and Destruction, there is the ongoing idea that ‘Brexit means Brexit’, DEAR GOD, sorry, I’m just sick to the back teeth of hearing this phrase, there is such thing as BREXIT, it is a madeup, non-existent GODFORSAKEN WORD!!!!

Enough with the spin, enough with the bull, enough with the slamming together of two words to form a nonsensical word, I am so tired of this shit you wouldn’t believe it, Brexit shall we change the word, Brexit means British Exit, yes, its the two words car crash that I mentioned before, so, from now on, it means British slowly reversing out of the driveway but realising the weather is starting to turn and besides there is plenty to do at home so we can hold off on this journey for as long as possible Exit!

Yes, I’m that angry, its time for the Political Classes to understand that they can’t fob us off with anymore of this idiotic nonsense, its like their a lazy teacher and we’re their pupils, they think we’re either less educated, less intelligent or less mature than we actually are and, for the most part, we think they are droves of hot-air spewing morons.

So, from me to you, I wish you a very Merry Christmas and to all those reading a Happy, Prosperous and Wondrous New Year.

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The New World Order

Previously on Earth, we’ve all lost our minds, well, that’s what it seems to me, here in Britain we voted for Brexit, over in the good ol’ US of A, they voted, somehow, for Trump, leaving me to question what’s next, Elmo for President of France, Count to run for Chancellor of Germany, (these are ridiculous suggestions to prove how stunned I feel).

The world has developed from one of confusing sense to one where I won’t even try to make sense of things, its simple really, for example, if you take the Popular Vote for the US Presidential Election, never mind the ultimately confusing Electoral College system that the Americans use, then here is the result as it stands as of the 23/11/2016:

Clinton: 63.7 million  Trump: 62 million

The Count So far

That’s votes by the way, Clinton’s leading the way as far as the Popular Vote is concerned, which is leading many, as Trump prepares to settle his Cabinet, to call for the American Democratic System to alter from the Electoral College vote version to the Popular Vote, as Clinton is apparently the third most popular candidate in history, though she was ranked as the second worst candidate to run, the worst being the President Elect.

My fascination with this has led me to question when the Electoral College system first started running, thanks to certain sites I found that the Electoral College system came about as a by-product of the 12th Amendment, here are the details:

The Twelfth Amendment requires each elector to cast one vote for president and another vote for vice president.[4][5] In each state and the District of Columbia, electors are chosen every four years on the Tuesday after the first Monday in November, and then meet to cast ballots on the first Monday after the second Wednesday in December.[6] The candidates who receive an absolute majority of electoral votes among the states are elected President and Vice President of the United States when the Electoral College vote is certified by Congress in January.

Confusing huh, anyway, with that question answered I had to wonder why the country that prides itself on being the bringer of Democracy was using an archaic system that ignored, in this case, the mass feeling of support for Clinton and not the President Elect (I am saying this phrase instead of Trump to get used to the fact that he is going to be President).

Now, I turn my focus to Trump’s initial actions, In the first 100 Days of his Presidency Trump has promised to do the following:

  1. Remove up to 2 million Criminal/Illegal Immigrants: This idea that he is only going to target Criminal immigrants, especially if they are illegal is a Tautology, if they are Illegal they have already broken the law, so therefore they are criminal, so he is defining a difference when there isn’t one, enacting such a deportation, on this scale especially will be a mammoth task, though it has been suggested that Trump could employ more Border Agents to undertake this task.
  2. Build A Wall between the US and Mexico: This is probably his most famous policy, he is still going ahead with this, some thought he would ditch it after becoming President but apparently not, he has already conceded that the wall may be a fence in some sectors, like the one that exists now in some sectors, that’s not really going to prevent anything or anyone from getting across, if you are determined enough, then even the largest wall Trump could build would be seen as a hurdle and let’s not forget, there are tunnels, numerous tunnels under the ground between the two nations.
  3. To Appoint a New Supreme Court judge: After the passing of Anthony Scalia, Obama has nominated a replacement but the Republican controlled Senate refuse to even glance at this suggestion, Trump will be able to fill this space as he will not be seen as the Enemy at the Gates, with the other Supreme Court judges approaching or over 70, there is a feeling this appointment could be the first of many for Trump.
  4. Repealing EVERY Executive Order Obama made: It would be possible, Obama made 32 Executive Orders in his time as President, lifting sanctions on Myanmar (Burma), his most controversial one however will probably be the one that is targeted first, the plan to lift the threat of deportation for millions of undocumented migrants and giving these individuals the right to work.
  5. Scrapping Obamacare: This is apparently the first thing Trump will do, he has been quoted as saying on ‘Day One’ he will get Congress to repeal this reform of the Healthcare system, reversing it from a close relative of the NHS here to the system America had before.
  6. Restrictions on White House Officials becoming lobbyists: This one will be the one he will have to fight with his own colleagues about, the Republican controlled Senate may baulk at this idea as it will have an impact on their future earning potential.
  7. Cancellation of all payments to the UN Climate Change: This is one that has widespread support at home but this is international law so even if he manages to get this idea passed by the two Houses that the US have, then it would take up to 4 years to withdraw from this idea.
  8. Using the money from No:7 to fix US infrastructure: Trump may think this is a fantastic plan but considering, in the last days of the campaign he ran, he promised a whole raft of changes, improvements and additions, he will need every penny to reach the £800 billion price tag that his plans intend to cost.
  9. Cut Taxes: This is the one that made me laugh, I have to admit, Trump hasn’t paid tax since the nineties, he is living the life of Reilly and quite honestly, it will never be easy to accept that he is now President, this is traditional Republican territory but coming from a man that DOESN’T pay his taxes, its laughable.
  10. Label China a Currency Manipulator: This will make the Chinese shake in their boots won’t it, it will do little to affect the largest economic powerhouse in the world, if anything it will probably do one of two things, tickle them or annoy them.

So that’s the 10 things Trump wishes to do in the first 100 days of his Presidency, from the ridiculous to the sublimely silly, I hope that these happen because then the world’s stand up comedians will be safely employed for the next four years, it is truly laughable.

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The Brave New Old World

Trump is PRESIDENT, just thought I’d bring that to people’s attention before I start, America has voted in the least competent and experienced, even professional male they could find, even Elmo from Sesame Street could be a better choice, though that’s more of an insult to Elmo.

Look, I know that America is in financial hardship, I know the country’s industrial heartlands, like Ohio have fallen on hard times but the idea that Trump, who is clearly going to look after his own intentions and those of his friends and fellow million/billionaires, then there is the point that, one of the major reasons, as far as I can see, that Trump was put into power was because he wasn’t part of the establishment.

Let me address this now, America, like many other countries, is a Democratic, Capitalist State, it is a nation built on the prosperity of business, trade and individuals, so, why and how is Trump not part of the same establishment, I would understand if they meant that he wasn’t part of the same Political Establishment because he has no experience in Politics but there is another issue there, Trump is not a Republican, he funded Hillary Clinton’s previous run for President, he is a Democrat and, amazingly, he has even stated in the past, in amongst all of his sexist, chauvinistic and racist beliefs, that the Republicans are the dumbest group, therefore he would probably run for them, though since then there have been numerous reports that this did not happen, so I will state that Trump is alleged to have said this, he may not have and if so then I apologise.

Returning to my original point, the issue is that those who voted for Trump believe that he will return the business to the Industrial centres of the nation, that he will rebuild the manufacturing industry and bring the country back from the brink, however, he is still adamant on chucking out immigrants, he recently took part in an interview, his first since becoming President-elect, where he stated that his administration would remove 2-3 million immigrants, this seems like quite a statement but consider that this number set for removal probably won’t stay removed, what’s to stop them, the Rio Grande, a fence, an expanse of land in certain sections, determined ‘patriots’ wanting to remove them by repeatedly and dilgently patrolling the border, the US Border Force, if you are determined enough, not even the most powerful of hurdles can stop you.

Trump will become President in the New Year, giving us time to take in his policies, his ideas and his aims, though it seems that certain nations are taking advantage of the fact that Trump is basically powerless until January, Australia have just made an agreement with the USA to move 1800 asylum seekers to the country, this is a one off deal but it looks like a moment of opportunism from the Australian government, who will remove these individuals from Nauru and Manus islands in the South Pacific to the land of the free.

You have to tip your hat to the Australians, they really know how to be bold and this proves that to a certain degree, though that is one side of the argument, on the other side, Nigel Farage has stated that Trump wants a ‘good’ future for the UK – US relationship, though if others are to be believed, Theresa May, our current Prime Minister was last to be contacted by Trump, he phoned nine other leaders, countries that range alphabetically from Australia to Turkey, thus proving that the Special Relationship is not as important to Trump as it might have been to previous leaders.

The UK is now just a small fish in a large lake, the days of the country being one to reckon with or be a significant part of the world economy are behind us, China, India and even Korea lead a more important stance than the UK has, it is a reminder to those who still believe that the UK is a great and powerful nation, (‘which once ruled a third of the Earth’ blah blah blah), that we are just a small island in the North Sea, that may yet become smaller if Scotland breaks away in the future, for if that ever happens then Wales and Northern Ireland will not be too far behind.

SO, as far as the future is concerned, to borrow and paraphrase a slogan from a former mobile operator, the future’s not that bright but it might be orange and mushroom shaped.

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Silence in the Stands

Time for a change of pace, as well as subject, just a brief detour but one that I feel is rather important or at least significant, for it seems that the honorable organisation in charge of football around the world, FIFA, has thrown its hat into the ring in a subject that it would have probably been better to ignore, Remembrance Day, for it turns out that the England vs. Scotland game that is scheduled to take place, as part of the World Cup Qualifiers, has landed on the 11th of November, an important day both historically and generally….

For this is Armistice Day and both sides of the Auld Rivalry would like to show respect by wearing poppies during this game, FIFA said no, now for a group that is generally very well-liked, wee joke there, this is one subject where they should have been rather lenient, as they were when it came to the alleged bribes that some of their hierarchy received to give the following two World Cup competitions to Russia and Qatar.

Now, it is understandable that the World Organisation would like to make some sort of show of power, as they do not allow political, religious or divisive issues to be represented, though the fact that they are not allowing the players to wear poppies is rather too much, there is no religious significance to the poppy, anyone can wear one and show respect, even beyond that, there is no political significance to the poppy either, so the reason that this ban is in place is rather bemusing, the poppy is simply the flower chosen to represent Armistice Day, the thanks that we express to those who paid the ultimate sacrifice for their country, on either side of the barbed wire in WW1, on either side of the coin in WW2 and the following conflicts, the day is set aside for us to pay our respects to those who gave their lives for freedom and our continuing existence, there is no religious gain from this, no political advantage, it is simply a way for us as a race to stand together and remember that brave men and women gave their lives for the greater good.

It is not an easy subject to talk about, especially seeing as there seems to be this idea that there are Winners and Losers in every war, one side is victorious and another is defeated, though think about it, people, military or civilian, died in the course of every war, life is lost, in vast numbers in WW1 and incredible numbers in WW2, though there is this idea that the Allies won both World Wars, despite the death, destruction and devastation caused, not only to the families of those who died or were horrifically wounded but also for the society as a whole, every time there is a war, we all lose, because it is proof that we are willing to cause the loss of life to fight for ideals that are, in one view, never achieved, and in another, unachievable.

Its a rather blunt and probably divisive or controversial way to view war and conflict but it is a view that, thanks to the freedom that the soldiers who paid the ultimate sacrifice, I can hold and consider, you may disagree but again that is a right that those who fought died for, to allow such freedoms is a way that we differentiate ourselves from others, we believe in different things, have faith in different things, live different lives and exist in dissimilar societies, all because our predecessors believed that we had these rights, that is part of what it means to be human, the freedom we enjoy.

I have to admit I was rather tempted to state that there would a WW3 in our future, though that would be too depressing or divisive even for me, so I shall simply end by quoting the words that are known and quoted during the Armistice Ceremony, Ode of Remembrance (Stanza 4):

‘They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning,
We will remember them.’

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In Demi-God We Trust

Hi Folks, The madness continues to haunt this site, when i say madness I mean my writing, just a little joke there, today we shall be exploring the US Presidential Election in some detail, so, let us begin.

Recently, the third and final Presidential Election took place, it was as bitter as the last, though proof was there for all to see that it doesn’t really matter what gets said about Trump, his support, his steadfast and determined supporters still believe his message, which they see as ‘Make America Great Again’ as being the only true message.

Hillary once again came under attack, though this time she combated this by retaliating with the issue of Russia, claiming that Putin would prefer ‘a puppet for president’, a claim that Trump would not fight or argue against the Russian leader, this immediately came under intense scrutiny from Trump, who stated that ‘You’re the puppet‘, like I said, intense scrutiny, though the issue became rather clouded when The Republican candidate refused to say if he would accept losing the election after making claims earlier in the week of “large-scale voter fraud”. He added: “I will tell you at the time, I will keep you in suspense.”

The fact that Trump is prepared to claim that both the Democratic system, which has worked for as long as America has been an Independent nation and that the result, like a coin toss, is up for debate is amazingly childish, its like a child stating that they want to do something again because they slipped or if a professional golfer cried Mulligan every time a shot didn’t go where they wanted it to.

This surely is a clue as to what kind of a person Trump is, if he doesn’t get his own way, he claims fraud, that the vote or result is rigged and has stated previously that he will not accept the result if he is not elected President.

It is amazing that the country which prides itself on its freedoms and its Democracy, it is seen as the Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave, to quote the National Anthem, what I didn’t think I would see is an American multi-billionaire declare that he would build a wall to keep immigrants from Mexico out, this along with banning Muslims from entering the US, shreds the idea that a person can build themselves a part of the American Dream there, its like Trump’s willing to put up a sign saying ‘Closed‘ when he becomes President, that he will isolate the US from the rest of the world, that technique might have worked back in the early part of the 20th century but not now.

Especially when you consider that he wants to build 350 new ships for the Navy, 36 new battalions for the Marines and 1,200 Fighter jets for the Air Force, these are actually the suggestions made by Carly Fiorina a year ago and by Mitt Romney 4 years ago, he’s borrowed ideas from others, surely if you are going to run for President you should have a view on the differing issues that will come into your directive instead of borrowing from other people, he then went on to declare that he would spend tens of billions of dollars to fund a larger and better-equipped Military.

This from the man that wants to build a wall between America and Mexico, with the added benifit of deploying 25,000 Border Agents, utilizing Predator Drones (used mainly by the military) and to follow the Immigration Laws to the letter, strengthening them where needed, deportation of 11 million, that’s right 11 million Undocumented Immigrants, as well as Deporting any and all Criminal Aliens from the US, yeah because crime is only committed by those who came from other countries, Visa Tracking systems installed and any who outstayed their welcome, so to speak, would be joining the other immigrants that aren’t allowed in the US and would be deported.

Basically, any Utopian Nightmare that you can think of, is probably where America is heading, Deporting Immigrants, criminal or otherwise, building a wall, which isn’t going to be cheap, because Mexico isn’t going to pay for something that they aren’t responsible for or wanting (this proven by the fact that Trump visited the Mexican President during the Campaign and didn’t mention the Wall at any point), then he wants to increase the military and to decrease the amount of Corporate Tax from 35 to 15%, this would cost more for the country, according to the Tax Foundation, an independent policy research group, it will cost $10 trillion dollars over the next decade.

Then there is also the issue that the Education Department would be cut, to reduce the country’s already substantial deficit, it currently stands at $19 trillion, that is eye-watering, though considering that Trump will be spending millions on the military and building a wall, then enforcing said wall with border guards, that would actually cause the already gargantuan debt to probably double if not worsen further.

He will dispose of Obama-care, the seemingly controversial Affordable Care Act will be removed, this would mean returning to the system that was in place before, though one of the main foundations of Obama care, which will apparently be kept by Trump is the idea of making insurers give coverage to people with pre-existing conditions.

The Immigration Train continues to roll on as a further point, which I did not notice until just now is included in Trump’s plans, the Ending of Birthright Citizenship, whereby the children of illegal immigrants in the US would not be protected, they would therefore form part of the 11 million that would be deported, though this is despite claims that undocumented workers were used to build Trump Tower over 30 years ago, then there is the issue of Pausing Green Cards and making employers offer jobs to ‘US workers first’.

All in all it seems that America would not be Made Great Again, if Trump were to become President it would seem that America would be put to the Grater not made Greater, though with every poll that has come out since the last US Presidential Debate, Hillary Clinton has led, though her lead has been, at times, rather close-run or tight, though the mere fact that the experienced Representative is leading could mean that the US will have its first Female President, which is a massive milestone for the nation but it will probably be overshadowed by Trump’s complaints, if he chooses to reject the result of the Election, though that is all yet to be known, roll on November.

 

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