Thursday, 6 October 2022

Are we facing an extinction scenario?

And yet again we have problems. Just changed the government, Boris has gone and now Ms Truss is in the doldrums just the same. You cannot belieeeeve it, can you? Well, believe it. It now seems that the Conservative era is over well and good. Welcome then the ultra leftie woke era I am looking forward to so much! We are in the doldrums and as they say here in Wales, Sลตr i fod! It might have to do something with the state of the whole planet and all that lives on it. When you look at how the biosphere works you will notice that all is dependent on the supply of food. Food first and foremost, next a safe place to stay. It just puts our present problems in perspective. It also depends on the number of individuals using the available food and places to stay and live. The state of the planet is now for all to see. I can’t help but think that I, am as I live in the western world (that is Europe and North America plus Australia/New Zealand) that we are guilty of having brought this planet to the brink. Meaning we have basically filled our niche. More so, in that Chine as well, has become a major producer of CO2 since the middle of the last century. Now I know there has been research in why species behave like that, behave in a way to fill a niche until food and space runs out after which the species faces a collapse in numbers to the point of nearly becoming extinct. Indeed, for some species the bell tolled and they have indeed disappeared. This type of behaviour you can see, especially in the western world. Despite all of us knowing that airplanes blow out enormous quantities of CO2 we still insists on flying all over the place. Helped of course by our belief we need a holiday in the sun. Sorry friends, very soon we all will have a holiday in a warm or rather too hot place, called Hell! If we do not alter our whole attitude to life that might come to pass sooner than we think. The behaviour as mentioned here is really mostly a western problem. It is now said by eminent academics that it is no longer possible to turn things around and that to me is the heavy medal that hangs around our necks. No amount of changing cars over to electric propulsion, nor building any amount of wind turbines or splattering the Sahara desert with billions of solar panels will have any input. It is too late but we can minimise our gas inputs to the atmosphere in such a way that over hundreds if not thousands of years CO2 can return to levels supporting the most varied life. In the meantime we must get used to hotter summers, colder winters, wetter and more stormy. In fact the weather will be our enemy for years to come. We need to protect our coasts, our low-lying lands. Stop building on floodplains. In fact demolish all houses situated within flood plains and re-arrange our living spaces. Is it possible? Perhaps but we need to do something. Are you listing, Mr and Ms Politician? You are not doing so great right now and haven’t for quite a number of years!

The second thing is that of why species behave in the manner that in the end puts it in danger of extinction. As said, availability of food and adequate space are probably the most important reasons. Why are so many people obese in the western world? Good question but it has something to do with availability of the necessary resources. There is never a careful allocation and dispersion, it’s all or nothing. This happens almost with everything, every commodity. If there is demand someone or something will fill it. More so, will try to enhance it by clever advertising. Even today this is the way we live. But soon the commodity disappears, overused and plundered. No politician or indeed no person, really looks at how we can come to grips with the habits of humanity. We are in the same state as any other species, we will fill our niche until food and space runs out. After that we will have a free-for-all and will be reduced in quantity to the same state we were in when expanding out of Africa. Followed by living in parts of the globe that are habitable for humans having no clothing and needing to find food by foraging.

It is not nice to think this way because we have brains to think of outcomes, so let’s think about outcomes and act accordingly!

Sunday, 2 October 2022

Did Reagan tell Kwasi about his plan?

There is an interesting discussion to be had about the reaction to the ‘Liz Truss’ economic plans. Reading Sky News podcasts or news reports I noted an American guru mentioning the similarities between the so-called ‘Reaganomics’ and what the UK government has produced this past week to ‘kick-start’ the economy here. President Reagan, riding his white stallion on the Whitehouse lawn, produced a plan of tax cuts, cutting of red tape for businesses amongst other juicy items to help kick-start a sluggish economy. The talk in London is now about whether Kwasi, our knight in the shining armour of the Treasury, did just copy the Reagan plan? Well, if so, did the Reagan plan work? No? Why not? It was thought that the ideas of politicians are very much influenced by public thinking and feelings. In other words looking at the present situation here with the cost of living, the energy crisis and the resultant drop in the polls of the Conservatives by nearly 20 points, you can see why plans such as Kwasi’s might have little chance.

The thing is this, the plan is good, business confidence will result in investment and more openings in the jobs market but plans such as now proposed need to overcome the public resistance fuelled by continual media reports most of which are negative! Exactly why the American plan never really got out of the starting blocks. Let’s hope the UK plan will fare better. 

 And talking about the Media, I think it is time to curb the incessant ‘What if’ and ‘Ultra woke’ type of reporting. When I watch political reports I note the mostly insubstantial points made and discussed. These have no bearing in the big issues! A case in point is the two newspaper reporters/editors Andrew Pierce and Kevin Maguire on GMB’s morning’s news programme. They were discussing the financial backlash of the government’s plan when the more Labour oriented Kevin found it necessary to sing Monty Python’s song ‘Always look on the bright side’. These two I have seen many times before and they always make me laugh. The studio went into overdrive, embarrasing perhaps but it does show the media’s changing over to a more woke attitude. The BBC in particular. Kevin is an idiot, we all know that, possibly the reddest of the red, but he is funny with it and I like that. However, for that moment it showed the chasm between the political divide! Precisely the thing that scuppered good ol’ Ronnie. And more to the point, it could well scupper the government’s plan here as well. Let’s hope Kevin does not have the ear of Lizz!

Friday, 30 September 2022

Financial woes? You bet.. thank Labour!

OMG, you would not believe we are living in a country that basically won two world wars against almost impossible odds. Well, alrightie then not on our own but major participants nevertheless! Our people had to use their ‘stiff upper-lip’ for all those years but hey all that was lost yesterday in the panic about a mini-budget. God help us, the Labour echelon and others gleefully jumped on the bandwagon and literally heightened the whole drama up to dizzy heights. And that from a party that claimed it would win the next General Election. Sorry Keir you have been found out as a lightweight and basically as someone who does not know what he is talking about. You are way out of your depth my friend! Also, whilst you are opening the Exit door please tell that Wes Streeting to read a few books and familiarise himself with the NHS. A bit of Accountancy knowledge would help. What a shower and frankly a sizable part of Cons MPs are also part of this drama. The Chancellor did the RIGHT thing! The only mistake is that somehow it was turned onto Pension funds. How and why only God knows. 

What bothers me is that yet again the think-tank of the Treasury did not do its homework. Again I must ask, is there no-one now in the hallowed political circles that has a brain? The Chancellor’s job is to highlight the main plan and it is for the department to fill in the blanks. The plan was simple, loosen the tax burden, drop Income Tax by 1p to 19p in the £, help with soaring gas and electricity bills, drop the NI to its previous level, no business tax increase, and the 45% rate dropped. Now, did no-one think that Labour would not gleefully jump on that one? The other problem was to publicly pronounce that richer people would also get the benefits. No-one seemed to figure out that to increase business activity you do indeed have to decrease costs! Why was there no emphasis put on that point? The other thing Labour forgot to mention is that all major currencies are sliding against the dollar. 

The American Bank has increased interest levels far higher than we have sofar! As a result European cash is moving out, for now. Friends, we are ruled by nincompoops, Etonesque wallabies jumping up screaming ‘I know everything’. All that matters is gender equality. So, call me an idiot for not being non-binary, whatever it really means. Ask Richard Branson of Virgin Atlantic, he apparently knows. Perhaps his business acumen might serve Kwasi rather than the plonkers that run the Bank of England. We need more non-binaries in high places, don’t we?

Wednesday, 28 September 2022

Are the Media dangerous to Life? Well....could be

Day in day out we read about problems with children who simply cannot distance themselves from their mobile phones. You might ask; well, why give them in the first place? The problem is that everyone, literally everyone, now uses mobile phones. Children communicate in some arcane language they seem to understand but most grown-ups raise their eyebrows in the hope that it can make what they read, intelligible! My own family is locked into an app called WhatsApp. One of the most insidious things you will ever have. It is, I know, like a drug. There are people who have them in bed! Whatever turns you on but it has to be said that it does seem to influence your mental state. What I have done in conjunction with my daughter, the grandchildren are governed now by a software program called Famisafe. It allows for controlling what they can do on their mobiles. It is rather simple because you can set up times when the mobiles are blocked, for instance bedtimes or game playing. You can block the Google Play store (a good thing to do!) In fact, you can block most things but also allow those apps that are needed. For instance apps that help with school lessons, history, Wikipedia and so on. There is a cost but as always, good things, useful things, are costly to develop to provide and maintain. For about £50 annually I think it’s not a bad thing to pay for a child’s security. The Famisafe app can warn the overseer parent(s) about the incredible amount of silly and stupid WhatsApp messages that children send each other. Some of my granddaughters school friends are evidently not real friends and the groups they set up are quickly descending into and using, sexual innuendo and words. The app even highlights these words and also shows the name of the person sending them! Plus any replies given by the child will also show up. Good to have noted appropriate action can be taken at the time before it gets out of hand!

Obviously, it has been known that mobiles can facilitate this kind of communication. It crosses all age groups and sexes. It bothers me as well that Meta and other providers are so reluctant to do something about the problem. It does show up humanity in a bad way. Social restraint just goes out of the window. 

Lately we have learned about what damage can be done to young children, girls in particular seem to be obsessed with body image. Recently a young girl called Molly Russell committed suicide. It was found that on her mobile were shown many images and videos about self-harm and suicide. But permit me one observation, how was it allowed? Was there anyone checking the phone from time to time? Or better still was there a responsible adult making the poor girl using such an app as mentioned above? These are also questions that need answering. The truth is that too many adults are providing these contraptions without ensuring proper safeguards. I am not saying that this is the case here but generally speaking you will find it a true situation.  

As a quick remark, these monitoring apps are very difficult to delete. They can be a life-saver, children don’t like them and try almost invariably to get you to ‘Gimme, gimme, more time, more games, allow Google, allow WhatsApp etc etc’. In the end they do like and accept that an adult takes enough interest in what they are doing. It’s simply good to talk!

Sunday, 25 September 2022

Tax cuts galore, we'll all be millionaires!

If one said ‘We are in a pickle’, he or she would be entirely correct. We are in a pickle and not just the war in the Ukraine. Although that could well blow us all up to the ‘hiernamaals’ as the Dutch would say. Frankly if I was still in that lowland I would worry a bit more because a few bits of ordnance, like they are throwing around further east, dropped on the seaside dams would inundate most of the country. Politics is a funny business. Internationally and nationally. I was just watching the BBC, that ‘independent’ broadcaster this sunny Sunday morning when the Shadow Business Secretary, I forgot his name already, spouted the usual crap that Labour and now also the Conservatives, are (in)famous for. 

Apparently Keir Starmer is now fronting a ‘wonderful’ new plan to increase green energy. Everybody will be millionaires. Great! I will vote Labour at the next election. But hang on a mo, here we go again, promises, promises, promises. I have long felt that all these so-called ‘new’ plans are just no more than just ideas but when in power these very rarely, if at all, happen! Over the last 20 years or so and probably way before that, plans were two a penny but I just cannot recall any of them starting. This country in particular is bedevilled by probably well-meaning politicians, yes those we voted for knowing they did not have much between the ears but were the best of the bunch which does not say a lot about the rest. Bedevilled because they all have particular hobbyhorses. Meaning grand ideas about how to solve all our problems in one day! But enough about Labour, let’s look at Ms Truss’ ideas. I did think that to stimulate business is not a bad idea in itself but yet again the PM has not entirely thought it through! Tax cuts are great but they also disproportionally favour the richer elements. To scrap the cap on Banker’s bonuses is inherently meant to get these people into London and not to Frankfurt of New York. 

But as usual it has drawbacks, the general public does not think alike! I find the idea of bonuses across the board a bad idea as it is. Again, it is a disproportional way of rewarding good work. Anyone employed at a reasonable salary should do their best. It would be much better to develop a company wide system where if sufficient profits are made to reward all. Perhaps through the ownership of shares or similar. Again, the Tories are in danger of overstepping their ideas and as they are in power at the moment, could get it horribly wrong. We will have two years of see-saw politics I think and if it works Labour will disappear and other left parties will spring up. If things go wrong, the same will happen to the Conservervatives. In the end we might well get proportional representation and end up with coalition government for ever more. Or a complete federal set-up. It might even work!

Thursday, 15 September 2022

Like Socialism? Or Communism? Well, eh...

It has become pretty obvious as was pointed out on one of the many TV interviews that Russia had no intention to properly deal with their so-called occupation. They merely overran some areas after first having obliterated most of the infrastructure and then proceeded to deal with the population. Rape included as well as taking everything that took their fancy. Even after months the population and their possessions were treated as free booty. There were no attempts to restore services, no attempts to install proper government. In short Russia merely released a horde of gangsters, rapists, thieves and murderers onto another country. This is the year 2022 and it seems now without any doubt that Russia still lives in the 1800’s. Backward and how they ever obtained nuclear weapons is beyond me. There must have been many traitors in the West, those who think that communism is the way to save the world. Well, we have now seen how that works! We merely have allowed a fourth world country to have toys they do not really understand nor know how to maintain them. My Dutch grandfather was such a man. Not violent but a firm believer in ultra socialism. In other words he was just opposing the Nazis, yes there were Dutch Nazis aplenty! The problem was that both systems in the end are exactly the same! Total control over the population! But people like my grandfather would and could not see that. East Germany was still in existence then, although already tottering and holidays, yes ‘holidays, were arranged to see this social wonder. The truth was simple, they would never see the grotty bits but were shown the nice country bits, one hotel that was done up to the nines and daily chats with ‘intelligent’ persons. Yet the indigenous people were starving, never noticed. Much like Russia is today. My local church a few years ago, organised a trip to the land of Hope, Russia. Moscow no, St Petersburg yes. I would not go, I dislike socialism, at least the type these countries follow. However, a similar scenario, the group enthused about the beauty, the wonders and how Russia was a major power. What they did not know was the control exercised. The Russians are very good at that. The visitors only saw what was allowed. In the end we have to, somehow or other, get rid of authoritarianism. Also corruption. Corruption even in democratic systems where it also can be endemic. Lots to do, lots to think about. Perhaps now that one of the longest serving royal, the Queen has died we might have a chance to look at how we want to be governed. Take apart our rules and regulations to see if they are fit for purpose. Lots to do, lots to think about. Ergo, let’s do it! Let’s start!

Monday, 12 September 2022

What went wrong then, my old matey?

Like in the cartoon film Big Hero 6 where one of the characters said, ‘What’s the plan? What IS the plan? There has to be a plan’, Russian soldiers say the same thing. It has quite abundantly become clear, there was no plan at all with the invasion of the Ukraine. It seemed that from the beginning the idea was just to march into Kiev, take the government hostage and go back to Moscow eating borscht. Job done. Puppet regime in and to be followed by a so-called trial for nazi crimes. Putin was ready, already seated at a huge enormous table but now still by himself. There were supposed to be all his victorious generals beside him. Ah, how fate intervenes! Instead what have we got? Russia a laughing stock, an army that proved to be no army but a bunch of farm boys handling stuff dated from WW2 and only then if they spoke or understood the accompanying leaflet ‘How to load and fire the gun’. Most of the Russian weapons were based on foreign designs. Farm boys are not designers or engineers. Although there is nothing wrong with farm boys. Hard workers but soldiers? Especially soldiers in today’s techno world? You simply cannot just pluck people from farms or factories put a helmet on them and send to another country. Telling them to be ready for the victory parade so bring the feathered caps and flags. No need to bring food, there will be plenty when you get there. Enjoy the adoring crowds lining the roads!  

So how did it all turn upside down? Well, the only thing you can say is that the top people had too many assumptions about the real state of the field. Did not consider the changed attitude after 2014, the annexation of the Crimea. Neither noticed the build up, according to western methods, of the Ukrainian army. The establishment of a proper NCO cadre. The increased cooperation of the junior officers with western counterparts and the sacking of Russia-leaning top brass. Or if they did notice, disregarded it as not important. I have been in a western army and know how important sergeants are! It allows for smaller units, fast, mobile action. Russians only depend on vast ammunition stockpiles and artillery battles. What I have wondered from the beginning is what did they expect to be in after they literally flattened a country to just a pile of rubble? A wasteland where no-one could live? That seems a strange goal! So far, all of it has just resulted in the exact opposite of what was said to be the reasons for the invasion (sorry, special military action). The Ukraine has now turned into a rather large enemy, probably will join NATO in the near future. Two other countries have nearly completed joining NATO and all other NATO countries have upped their expenditure.

Even so, we will need to watch because Russia and China both, have now noted the increased resistance and military candour of the western world. Both are now busy projecting their influence to Asia and Africa, even to South America. China is doing so in a financial manner and continuing to do so. African countries are in dire need of finance, mostly because of gross incompetence and corruption but that does not seemingly deter China or Russia. The world will be an interesting place for a while, to say the least! You may wonder what it is all about. Because with the technology around today, warfare is a dead duck, literally! No winners, only losers.

Saturday, 10 September 2022

And so we go on...

The Queen has died. Long live the King! This is the mantra that is said after the dead of the reigning monarch. It is quite funny, I have not seen or heard any Twitterati complaining that we should be more diverse and should have said, They have died, long live Non-Binary It. What a load of trash, time to tell all the Its, Non-Binaries, to shut it and get back to work! Or if in University, do a proper study and leave the Home Cooking and Vacuum Cleaning degrees in their respective bins.

Yes, Queen Elizabeth II has died after one of the most honourable and long reigns which we probably will see no more. Seventy years, it was incredible. She, like many other families did not escape problems, no need to go into them right now, we all know it well but the seventy years did not pass by on a rosy, flower strewn path. Nevertheless, we should all be grateful for her steady, compassionate reign. Her undoubted but not spoken of, political insights, her influence in many areas of life in the UK, her call to duty. So, thank you Ma’m, rest in peace.

 In the meantime, we do have some quite large problems to attend to! Least of all the energy problem. As I have said before, our politicians, our leaders have been caught with their pants down, big time! Putting all the eggs in one basket! Did no-one view the Russian propensity for a type of aggressive politics and actions as circumspect? Did no-one think that the government, i.e Putin, could use the oil and gas card and put pressure on western governments? No? Really??? I have long said that self-sufficiency is absolutely necessary for items of strategic importance. We should already have in place a sound and working plan for energy and whether that is nuclear, wind or waves I leave for others to discuss, but instead we kept importing gas, oil and about everything else as well. We played footsie with the oil companies and gave them far too much power, a virtual stranglehold! It is the oil companies, together with corrupt politicians who have brought this planet to its virtual knees! Today we are in danger of having to say goodbye to life as a species. But not just us, we are taking with us about 95% of species alive today. Vegetation included. Not a very good epitaph, is it? It is however only one of the problems we are facing. Just watch the TV news and read some papers to see what is going on. There is a politics malaise, particularly in the UK. Rudderless non-entities shouting their mouths off across a Chamber. Thinking that is governing. It needs an overhaul of gigantic proportions. Our type of government supposedly democratic is not democratic at all. Did I have a say who is to be Prime Minister? We voted in Boris and so we will have to stick with him good or bad. Unless there would be a general election! But a cabal of grandees and other idiots did not like what they read on Twitter and decided he had to go. It should have been a countrywide decision not just 50 or so people! Well, perhaps some good may come out of it, the good Liz seems to have the measure of the opposition leader.

Sunday, 4 September 2022

The Guardian, a newspaper that guards...what exactly?

If you ever wanted to know why I dislike the lefties in this country, just read the Guardian newspaper. In one of the articles I actually read on my mobile, written by Stewart Lee, I must say I have never read such incomprehensible drivel! He obviously dislikes Boris Johnson and called him a bastard! If that is how a responsible outfit like the Guardian, left-leaning as it is, has journalists of the Stewart Lee standard, the paper needs to be rolled up and set fire to it. Besides, they need to file for bankruptcy. It was indeed one of those vile emanations from woke ultra leftie people you would see. It is sad to have to say this, this guy used the Bard’s (Shakespeare) King Lear to enhance his vitriolic attack on Boris Johnson. Even worse he said that if you voted for him or supported him you were an absolute idiot. He used another few words, best not repeated here. I know I have called people idiotic but I am sure I have never called for the use of language like that. In fact I should consider reporting this guy. He is an affront to the worthy profession of journalism. Unfortunately he is not on his own either. Quite a few are seemingly employed by the Guardian.

Well, there you go, it does show the degeneration happening in this country. The lowering of standards and morals. Anything goes and you might well wonder where this will all end? I suppose it’s all down to the use of mobiles where to be followed is all that matters and where anything goes. There are no fences, there is nothing to hold people back. And it is like all fenced areas, once they have been broken a stampede follows.

In the meantime we are all awaiting the Conservative new PM although we all also know that it will be Liz Truss. She’s sure the front-runner. But it is not over until the fat lady sings. And before you take me to court saying ‘fat lady’. It is a well-known saying in the UK. Perhaps we all should say now ‘well-endowed non-binary biped’. Are we not getting a bit fed up with all this nonsense? Who is driving this agenda? It seems to be small very loud pushy minorities. It is about time someone high up tells ‘m to shut it and go home and kick the dog instead. Oops, sorry can’t say that either anymore. So, I haven’t, it is the gnome that lives in my house. Just wondering how our friends, the Americans, deal with all this nonsense?

To finish this, I am of the opinion that Boris was wrongly got rid of. Yes, he liked a lie, he liked to have a party. The problem he had was that he didn’t think he was PM. In the position he occupied you cannot be one of the boys, you cannot forget the rules or laws you have initiated. Well, he’s gone now but I would not write him off just yet!

Saturday, 3 September 2022

Holidays over, back to the rat-race...

Holidays are over and I have returned to my keyboard! Reading and assimilating information that I did not do on the extensive sands of West Wales! Not only that but the sun kept shining and now I look like I was born in the Mediterranean! I like to observe and on the sands (beaches) I noted two things, everyone had one or even two or more! Dogs and most people were obese! Well, there you go but now back to the drawing board, so to say. 

Not very often you will read something very interesting on the left side of the newspaper feeds. But my eyes were drawn to a Guardian (a UK newspaper) feed on my mobile which was a report of what Bernie Sanders had said about the so-called ‘ruling class’ in the US. Despite the title the article was not so much about politics or the political class but about how three multi-billionaires own more dosh than half the American bottom population which it said encompassed 150 million people! That is an astounding claim but funnily enough I have been thinking for some time about the exact same problem, about this gross inequality. You might think “ Yeah look at who said it – this guy is not particularly poor himself”. True but nevertheless he is right. I suppose the three mentioned, not by name but we can all guess, thinking of Amazon, Microsoft and Meta (Facebook etc) owners. Besides that who owns Google? 

Anyway, the article initially clearly sounded leftish cr*p until you start thinking about it. I am not a socialist, I hasten to add, I abhor the leftish left. I am more of the middle-line thinking persons but this article rang a bell in the recesses of my grey matter. Because this situation crops up even in the UK as well. The UK after hundreds and hundreds of years still has a very class-ridden society. We have the aristocrats, the high earner class, the middle class and that has about three levels and the lower class. The lower class by far is the largest of them all. Just like in the States but for slightly different reasons. The money in the UK, again like in the States is mostly in the hands of the top two classes. What’s more all these get richer by the day. 

This situation is now highlighted by the enormous shift in the cost of energy! It is pretty clear the political class has been found sleeping on the job. That’s the reason also why articles like Bernie Sanders’ should ring alarm bells in the luxurious abodes of these oligarchs and their retinues! The more people arrive in the US and yes, also in the UK through immigration and birthrates in the lower classes (just look it up, there are plenty demographic reports available) the more chances there will be for the whole situation to become incendiary. I predict that will happen before 2050! If the energy situation is not resolved this could be even before 2030! In fact the article highlighted the absurd inequality that is around, even in Russia where the top echelon of society makes themselves richer by billions having usurped power and raiding the riches of that resource rich nation. Frankly, that sounds the same in the UK and US except the extremely rich have not usurped political power but nevertheless have great influence! From my perspective Bernie is absolutely correct, we do need to have a look at this absurd situation and rectify it if we want to live in a coherent and well-working world.

Sunday, 28 August 2022

To all doglovers, not...

Just a short one as I am on a day trip. Sun yes and loads of people with dogs. By the looks of things there are more dogs than people on the planet! I am not a dog lover, in fact dislike them. Even during the lock-down period (a long two years) no dogs in my house. But looking around I can report that most dog owners have little regards for others despite rules that show where to let them run, defecate, urinate and try to get on the back of other dogs or my leg. The left over results are for others to step in. Lovely. Nice holiday memento. It is time the government, seeing it's enormous budget deficit, will impose a dog-tax. £1000 per annum. Plus a mandatory visit to a vet annually for a worming check. And a mandatory chip. Any dog checked without to be euthanised immediately. I hasten to add I am not the only man (a non-binary one) thinking like that. But there you go, I'll be back when I have cleaned my shoes!

Thursday, 25 August 2022

Is it that bad now in the UK?

Lurid headlines all over the papers. Girl of nine callously shot in her own home. Innocent caught by gunman. Our society has gone stark raving mad. Well, yes I suppose you could say that and then trust the newspapers to rack it up to the utmost. But looking at it a bit more objectively our society has been going down for some time now. It would be too easy just to blame the police in this country but they must be prepared to take the flack. Simply because they have scaled down quite considerably. More to the point, they have started to look at actions, words and exclamations of people that have nothing to do with crime! The other section, the politicians, they are the ones who have left this country to sink into the morass of indecision, prevarication, lies, self-interest, and that’s just for starters. We elect politicians not for their policies but for how they look or are dressed. Politicians who stand for representing us, no-one looks into their background, their educational standard, their personal behaviour. As a result we tend to get people that are not capable to carry the mantle of responsibility. What would-be politicians expect to do? A nice wage packet, sitting on green leather seats for a day or two? Shouting a few obscenities at some people who sit on the opposite seats? Sounds like a permanent holiday to me!

All in, you can easily see the state of our nation at present and the result is shown so horribly in Liverpool. It has nothing to do with racism, or LBGT+ but it has all to do with the general malaise in personal standards and behaviour across all strata of society. Drugs are openly available on the streets and despite glorious TV programmes showing the police tackling it, the reality shows differently.The very rich think nothing of awarding themselves or being awarded huge pay rises whilst the bottom of society may be lucky to get 50 pence an hour on the so-called national wage. A society where large companies have abandoned all pretense of being socially responsible and 24-7 working now common place paid for by the hour only. Glitzy advertising campaigns show a world which is only in their imagination, the reality is the opposite. A stark, grey world where Victorian standards seem to becoming more and more widespread. I suppose it won’t be long before our society will collapse completely and all of us will be throwing the slops out of the window onto to the street. 

Another problem that is basically ignored is that of unbridled, unchecked immigration. Despite wonderful verbal emanations from the aforementioned politicians and disregarding the feelings of the great silent majority in this country, immigration is continuing unabated and actually increasing at a phenomenal pace. No longer is it a few tens in a dinghy but hundreds every day! There is now a whole industry in France to ship as many as 100,000 annually and more if they could find enough boats. In the meantime the society immigrants wished to join is already far from the heavenly abode they were expecting. Welcome to the mishmash that is Britain today, hope you will be lucky to find a place to live and work and enough food.  

It all sounds so dreary and frankly it is but if we have time and the will, we can rectify the situation quite easily. We need a fresh look at our politics, the way we vote and simply decide how we want to live. It needs a consensus, we need all in Britain to sing from the same song-sheet in as far as how we want our society to be. Of course, there will be differences of opinion but surely we all want to live in peace and harmony? We need to establish simple but effective rules of behaviour, also effective actions if people misbehave. Fines and other punishments, jail and so on need to be reflecting the criminality. Well, let’s hope good sense prevails. Get on with it Liz or Rishi or who ever will follow the wild-haired tornado.

Saturday, 20 August 2022

Electric- Solar, wind, human emissions? Take your pick...

Innovation, innovation, innovation. Just saw a TV program called ‘Click’. On this occasion it highlighted the small companies in both the Netherlands and Sweden engaged in the development of electric boats, small fast cruisers that even hydroplaned! In Sweden even ferries! And the question I have is – What is happening in Britain? Once the powerhouse of the world? Is it perhaps something to do with government backing? Is money being made available for this type of research and development? Well, you answer that question, my perception is that precious little is done in the UK except arguing whether we are ‘its’, ‘binary’ or ‘pan sexual’. The development shown showed cars that were virtual solar panels! Obviously there is not a lot of sun in western Europe. But with so much greater need for charging the costs overall are also greatly reduced. And here comes my nasty brain – this is not what OUR UK government wants because of the also greatly reduced tax basis. The sun comes free and I’m certain that at this precise moment someone in government is already thinking – How can we tax sunlight. In the UK I have to mention it again, we are now concerned only with watching Twitter and Facebook to see what our neighbours are thinking of us. Our UK children spend inordinate time on phones and tablets to play the most stupid games you’ll ever see. Instead of having a look at how to make a brilliant chess move they are looking at Google Play Store for interesting items like World of Tank Battles or Bed Wars. Good question – Why don’t we ban Google? Or severely curtail it? Personally I have curtailed Google as much as possible, I use DuckDuck as search engine and change over every now and again to Startpage. Like when I was in the army it pays to be fleet on foot. Change frequently, don’t stay in the same place more than a minute. I use more than the two mentioned, obviously we need to be security conscious. 

But back to innovation – why do we not pay much attention to solar panels in the UK? I hear mealy-mouthed explanations such as being not very efficient, costly to make, costly to install, not making enough electricity. Yet other countries are forging ahead with much better solar cells, better manufacturing processes and as seen are now producing vehicles, cars, boats, ferries that run entirely on electricity. There are developments that work on road surfaces where lines are embedded, much like the idea of the Chinese mag-lev. Where magnets levitate the car, making friction virtually nil reducing costs again. (So less tax for the government, I think the Civil Service here has nightmares!). All in all, we are seemingly married to the idea that wind will do it all. We are plastering our hills, every spare bit of green with inefficient and very costly wind-turbines. Why? Because most in our government, MPs, ministers, Civil Service, all believe that wind-turbines provide employment across the board. This might be true but it is costly as well. In Holland, my old stamping land, most new build houses have solar panels. Factories all have more and more solar panels. They are not converting valuable farming land in panel monstrosities but still, there are plenty to go around. Britain? Ah, you see we are clever we believe in wind. IT blows all year round doesn’t it? No, you gormless minister, it doesn’t! For most of 2022 the wind was pretty poor in the UK. Except for the hurricanes coming out of various political orifices. And so we are in the doldrums (!) in more ways than one. Let’s hope good ol’ Liz will hoist up the trousers (sorry!) and take this country by the scruff of the neck. Sorry to say but despite promising, this was Boris’ greatest failure.

Friday, 19 August 2022

Bad news is bad news...

Day in – day out the information hurricane pours out the most depressing stuff. For myself I get really depressed listening to this continual tornado of bad news. Even the TV presenters or news readers make it worse by being incredibly argumentative in their questioning. I am of the opinion that they know very little of the subjects they talk about. The most knowledgeable persons are the weather people, at least they seem to have a good knowledge of what is going on with the weather! The rest and that includes the aggressive Nana better stay home and give us a complete rest and recover our mental health. In days past mental health was called being doolally (look up the meaning of that on Wikipedia). Lately we have to get used to returning to pre-Thatcher days when unions rule and strikes are called by Red Barons. Things have a habit of returning, don’t they? When I read up on my history books I can see pre-1939 days. When ordinary people are being driven into the claws of very aggressive minorities. Minorities that through use of social media continually chip at the fabric of society. Like in Germany, in the end due to false promises these minorities take power and then the good Lord save us all. But before the good Lord does this the world will have been virtually destroyed. Perhaps this is humanity’s fate. The inability to control unbridled aggression, greed, avarice and arrogance. We do not learn from our collective mistakes in the belief that next time things ‘will be different’. No, they won’t as Russia's invasion of the Ukraine shows. And worse, even after that has been ‘sorted out’, we will do the same thing time and time again. Even by looking at the national situation here today, what with the rumbling strikes. Strikes rarely solve the reasons why strikes were called for in the first place. For myself I cannot see any strike that solved the problem(s). The miner’s strike of the eighties (1984-85) is a case in point. The mines themselves were relatively well-run. But the strike was politically motivated and from my point of view had nothing to do with working conditions or relations. The result was the closure of almost all the mines in Wales and most in the northern coalfields. It might have inevitable anyway due to a growing scientific consensus about the reasons for global warming but the damage this strike caused to families and societies was immense and its rumblings are still felt in places like the Rhondda today!

I have begun to think that the plethora of bad news, or rather say, negative news is damaging society. We need to re-design the Web whether we like it or not. I don’t like saying it but it needs AI, properly designed AI to police the Internet. Simply because humanity cannot control itself. We need to stop this incessant reporting the ‘News’. It is bad enough to learn there is a war, sorry – military intervention- taking place. But do we need to know precisely where the rockets are fired from? Do we need to know or see the pictures of decimated human corpses and discuss in the goriest of detail who did what and why? If you like that sort of thing, just watch Dr Pimple Popper on TV. At least she does something that benefits humanity. And there is plenty of gore.

Thursday, 18 August 2022

A puzzling time isn't it?

From time to time I watch TV because my wife is married to Pointless. It is a rather interesting program as you need to find answers to questions that the panel of 100 people interviewed to answer such questions, had not mentioned. So, the four couples who stand need to find the lowest score, not the highest. If there was a question answered that gave a zero result £250 was added to the prize total. The end prize, if not won because the last couple standing does not find a zero point answer at that stage, will be increased by £1,000. If they find a zero point answer they will win the pot. Sometimes that can run to well in the thousands. Anyway, this is not what struck me as interesting. What is, is the knowledge displayed about subjects. It is funny but most younger people like to say ‘This was before my time’ and are reasonably well versed in music questions. But take History or Geographical questions, they invariably display complete ignorance. It does not show up well for secondary education in this country. From quite a number of quarters you hear about education standards being watered down. This might be true or not, I suspect it is but as a governor in a local school I also noticed that more time is spent on non-science subjects. Maths is not forgotten but I must ask, why in all honesty are they teaching Napier? Drawing a grid, placing numbers, and so by adding arrive at the answer after two hours? Well, maybe not two hours but you I hope, will see the point?

The other thing that bothers me is the bad quality of writing. I mean when looking at the calligraphy type as so wonderfully shown on documents of the past you won’t really see that in schools today. Today you are lucky if you can decipher what is written. Spelling is another failure post, probably the fault of Google’s spell checker or software like OpenOffice or Microsoft’s Word. On their own these programs do exactly what they say they do but our brains are not taxed and do not have to remember how to spell because the spellchecker will automatically correct you. In all of that, you must remember that our brains stay sharp through EXERCISING it. For myself I spend some time doing Crosswords and am a lover of Sudoku. Lovely Japanese girl that. No, not really, Sudoku is or can be a hard puzzle pending on how the numbers are set up and how many are set in the grid to start. Another very good brain tester is a simple card program like Patience. When you must recognise values and put them in order of their differing colours or suits. Another great activity is jigsaw puzzles. My tablet loads these in a jiffy and I can choose with how many pieces I will start. Obviously I must assume that we will have the time to do these games but surely we can? In the end it is all for one reason, keeping our brains active and healthy! And lastly, don’t forget we also need physical exercise. Buy a watch that keeps informing you how many steps you have taken. Funny I should say it but I have not got to the two-thousand steps a day yet!

Wednesday, 17 August 2022

A bit more fun about politics...

I have often wondered what makes people become a politician. Is it a wish to make our society better? Sure, it is what they profess to want. Is it because they have a hunger for power? They all would deny that. Is it because they want an easy life? They vehemently would deny that. Now I am certain, initially would be politicians are straightforward, honest and well-meaning persons. So, we may well ask – what happens after they have been elected? From where I am sitting it seems they lose their mettle pretty quickly. They get embroiled in party politics and so signs a death sentence to any ideas of improving society. For most MPs, I am sorry to say, their impact on the Westminster scene has been virtually nil. Unless they are sitting at the top-table (The Cabinet and related serving staff) we might as well just forget all about MPs and just save the money. Rather than 600+ crammed in a smallish chamber, have a sharply reduced number, no more than 100 and a cabinet of 10. I am certain that much more work can be done with a greatly reduced number of people. Because as we see today, there is a hell of a lot of talk but very little actual decision making.

The reason is there are far too many differences and opinions to overcome. In the States and here,  we have two party politics. Basically two largish parties continually vying for power. One might ask, why bother but it simply means one will get its hands on the purse strings. Do we smell opportunities for corruption here? Just so you know, I have not said that but nevertheless... In the end, the party in power is not so far removed from the other. Simply because the general needs of the nation requires a similar approach. Labour or the Democrats in the US tend to focus more on the ‘worker’ and some social issues and the Conservatives and Republicans focus somewhat more on business issues. This might be a bit too simplified but I do think generally to be correct but what do I know.

One of the things that bother me is the growing importance of social media and the impact it has on politics and political views. In the UK politicians avidly watch and take part in the Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and related platforms. I look at them but do not partake. In Quora, a growing medium, the questions and answers will astound you. You get questions like – when we visit another galaxy will my grandchildren see the pictures? My answer would be – Of course they will, Andromeda is just next door, don’t forget your Polaroid! In the end if proper-meaning politicians see and read all that drivel and believe this has a bearing on how the nation feels and acts then you can easily see the doldrums we are in presently. When people start thinking Trumpy baby has their best interests at heart it is time to emigrate to Mars. Or take that trip to Andromeda. If people start believing our own Wonder Woman Liz Truss will save the nation from rising prices, well best to go back to sleep then. As for Rishi baby, chiseled jaw Rishi, he would be too busy squirreling his fortune back and fore to India to have much of a thought for us clodhoppers. We are merely required to pay up and shut up. 

Wow, and all this on a sunny and dry morning before I had my porridge which is all I can afford (a whole 1Kg bag in the local supermarket for less than £1.50). Unfortunately the local cows do not produce free milk. Like the funny Scots ( that’s them of the skirt wearing fraternity) I might have to change to use water and salt.