Wednesday, 25 May 2022

Here And There

Hello, dear readers!

Now this one might get a little ranty.

It wasn’t meant to, truly it wasn’t. I had a nice wholesome blog lined up, all about the football team I support pulling off a last game miracle to stay in The Premier League, just how drunk I got as a result, and all the hi-jinks somewhat-more-sober me can remember getting up to.

Event’s, however, have overtaken me, and, well, yes, it might well get a little ranty from here on in.

Those of you with the dubious pleasure of following these random musings will know I try to keep things light, on the whole. I try for a degree of levity, perhaps even a pinch of irreverence. I might not always hit the bullseye but, hey, the efforts there.

Today , such an attempt would seem a little empty, given the news from both sides of the channels, so sorry Tina (That’s the ever-awesome wife, if you didn’t know), this one will definitely not be funny.

A Rude Awakening

I was yet to fully wake up this morning, when I turned on the T.V. and BBC news informed me of the shooting dead of a reported 19 students and 2 teachers at Robb Elementary School, in Uvalde, Texas, U.S.A.

This, of course, is not the first such tragedy in American history; it’s not even the first this year, but it was enough to force Joe Biden to address the nation he is president of, with a heartfelt plea to put an end to the gun violence that has become such a terrible and frequent characteristic of a once great nation. It is a plea that has been made before, but a plea those who worship at the altar of the 2nd amendment, the weapons manufacturers who encourage and exploit them, and the politicians who lobby on their manufacturer’s behalf, seem deaf to.

The obvious answer is to ban the guns that cause so many deaths, possibly starting with the assault rifles which seem to feature so often. The problem? Well, at this point, they are far too widely proliferated throughout the population and held in far too high esteem, thanks to a 2nd amendment reverence that borders on the religious, to make any kind of ban, surrender, or buy-back viable. Quite simply, America has a gun addiction, and I don’t think it’s ready to quit.

The news then switched to matters domestic, and the much promised arrival of the Sue Grey report.

Back Home
In a flurry of frenzied anticipation, this, we were told, was due to be delivered to no10 at 10am, ready for general publication shortly thereafter, and a statement would then follow after PMQs later that day.

Hoping that this would go some way to restore my shaken faith in human nature, I got myself ready to watch things unfold, hoping for some drama, perhaps a crossing of the floor, a senior politician or two resigning the whip, or dare we dream it, the resignation of Johnson himself and the calling of a snap general election.

In the interest of transparency, I should probably mention, at this point, that I'm no fan of the Tory party or their dear leader. I pretty much think they’re a bunch of corrupt, self-serving, crooks, in the job to make themselves even more obscenely rich than they already are at the expense of the already struggling poor (I know, I know. There will be those among you who say all politicians are the same, but shades of grey, dear reader, shades of grey). I was, therefore, almost ready to get the popcorn out for PMQs, and if things went the way I forlornly hoped, maybe indulge in a bit more booze (Yes, there was a drop or two still left after Sunday). Sadly I was to be disappointed.

Despite the report being damning and containing pictorial evidence suggesting he might have broken the ministerial code and lied to parliament, Johnson, like a scruffy, poundshop variant of The Terminator, took shot after shot from both opposition and (one) Tory without ever backing down, yes he apologised (again), and yes, he took ‘full responsibility’, but he was not ready to fall on his own sword, and I think he never truly will be. I think he will have to be forced to go, and I don’t think the Tory ministers, politicians, or members are the people to do that.

All in all it leaves me sad and frustrated. Sad that the people we entrust to keep us safe, to lead us through difficult times, and to set an example of the behaviour and values a modern, enlightened society should hold dearest, have fallen so far short of the mark. Frustrated that people have become so enamoured of the arguments and talking points used to defend what should (at least in these eyes) be indefensible, and so ready to excuse and ignore these shortcomings.

If dishonesty in government and the elevation of the pursuit of money and power over the value of human life, health and happiness are to be the norm in politics, if people are to be mere commodities to be bought, sold, and exploited in order to concentrate wealth further and further into fewer and fewer hands, and the trust in we place those we employ to correct the balance cannot be maintained, then truly, I weep for the future of the whole damn lot of us.

Until next time


Hey, folks! If you would care to take a look at some of my more creative writing, then the links below will transport you to the magical worlds of two anthologies my short (and in two cases, very short) stories have been included in. Feel free to check ’em out!

New Tales Of Old: Volume 2

Death Ship



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