Saturday, 31 October 2015


"Now is the winter of our discontent made even more crapulous by the Tory Government elected by an English minority and a main opposition party which is not in any shape or form an opposition."

Traditionally Samhain marked the equinox, the end of summer, the harvest home, wood stacked and the round house made safe to withstand what ever winter brought upon us while we awaited mid winter to pass and the sun's return.

It was and is a time to tell ourselves the stories about our ancestors, to listen to the bards recite the tales of who and what they were to us, to where we find ourselves now. To remind us what we are and should be. To give us the strength and encouragement to go on no matter what the year to come throws at us.

There was a strong Scottish tradition of Halloween which still in my childhood, in the 1960's, reflected this more ancient and reflective nature of Samhain. Parties were held for all the relatives, each parent brought a dish to share along with a song, a tune, a story or a poem. The kids would be organised to go round the doors with a song or a skit with no expectation of any reward, a remnant of the bardic sharing of who and what your family were. If you were good you might get a sixpence or an apple or two. Your songs were Scottish folk songs or poems your family knew. One year I remember my cousins and I each learned a verse of Tam O'Shanter to recite around the doors when we were guising, musical kids would play the fiddle or tin flute as we walked between houses, usually accompanied by the banging of my Gran's old pots and lids to keep the boggles and ghosties away. Not that far distant, I guess, from our ancient Celtic forebears going from round house to round house in their own villages.

The Anglicisation of Samhain to Halloween and the further American 'Tesco style' commercial version which has brought trick and treating; all act to make us forget why Samhain was important to our extended families, towns and villages. It could be seen as just another piece of cultural vandalism, reducing further modern Scots ties with their past and why it remains important as it shapes who we are. The process of cultural smothering of Scotland has been going on ever since the Union was forced into existence, we see it in the Unionist cringe of the Scots branches of Tory and Labour Parties, the shortbread tin approach of the BBC to Scottish culture, shaped as it is by the 'British' filter and what is suitable according to its London bosses at Westminster. The subliminal message of we Scots are too wee, too poor, too stupid to run our own country on a diet of haggis, champit neaps and bashed tatties.

This Samhain, whilst you and your families are having a grand time, maybe a wee pause to remind yourselves on whose shoulders you have always stood, why this is and has always been important to who we are and who we can be. The last few years have reminded many of us what is important to us as Scots and what it is which defines us as people and a nation, no matter the Scottish cringe of the media and those in Scotland and England who are threatened by a Scottish cultural and political resurgence, say.

Wednesday, 28 October 2015

Wednesday ..... I can never get the hang of Wednesdays

Here we are in the middle of the week and no one can actually decide if the failed parliamentary system at Westminster has had an attack of severe constituionalitis or not. We have, if you believe the British Establishment media channels, or we have not, if you actually read the fine detail what actually happened (or not) to Osborne's planned tax credits and other cuts. As I grasp at the straws of hubris from the smoke of a hypothetical constitutional apocalypse, the situation appears to be:
  1. The constitution breaking 'fatal motion' of the Lib Dems ermine warriors failed because the Labour Lords planked their hands under their corpulent arses and either abstained or voted with the Tories
  2. The Labour Lords' motion, passed; which basically says you can cut all you want Gideon but just 'not yet' and not retrospectively.
  3. Labour are claiming to have stopped Osborne's tax credit and other cuts dead in their tracks
  4. No one, outside of folk who read Gnat on line media, has a Scooby-Doo this is a whole massive smoke screen of pretendy listening to the country by the vermin in ermine behind which the Tory cuts are still firmly in place
  5. Look, there's a squirrel!
 The Tory press are full of how this is a tremendous shock to our 'democracy', people who are unelected can not do this to a majority government while neatly avoiding the obvious point these people are only in the House of Lords because other politicians decided it was a good place for them and a nice reward for services rendered in maintaining the British Establishment status quo and 75% of the UK's active electorate voted for anyone but the Conservatives.

In the slightly less right wing press we are reading about his great victory for Labour, even though it is one which is beyond Pyrrhic, beyond vacuous, far smaller than insignificant and an utter lie. Labour's claim of victory is the equivalent of saying the British Army only suffered a few cuts and bruises on the first day of the Somme Battle in 1916.

In the simplest of terms; from the point Osborne signs off on the relevant statutory order, the proposed cuts will effect all new claimants and previous claimants when they sign on for new benefits at any point in the future.

No reversal of Tory policy, no massive win for Labour, no constitutional crisis just another Labour and Tory political fix, made to look highly controversial and confrontational while really it is business as usual for the troughers of the British Establishment at the UK taxpayers expense.

Maybe I will get the hang of Thursdays ..... Keiza Dugdale at FMQs ..... maybe not ....  then.

Monday, 26 October 2015

If this is Tory competence in government .....

My local neighbourhood Tory wannabe MSP dropped a nice 8 page leaflet in my letter box today telling me, subliminally, just why I was stupid to vote for the SNP and wasn't it time I saw sense and voted for his nice Tory Party who are the only party who can save Scotland from itself.

Given the councilor in question would struggle to find his own arse with both hands and a GPS, has proven to be next to utterly useless as a councilor and came a distant second, having lost vote share compared to 2010, in his attempt to win Galloway and stop the separatist SNP MP; you could ask whether as the local electorate did not believe this guff from him last year when the SNP took 41% of the vote share, why would they be taken in by the same guff a year later?

In his paean to Conservative economic competence he missed out the bit about his party's economic policies taking the UK's overdraft from some £30 billion, under the incompetent Gordon Brown, to some £1.7 trillion and rising under Osbourne. Nor in his valediction to the Conservative's management of the UK economy did he mention the sell off, on the cheap, of the Royal Mail and the taxpayers holdings in RBS. He seemed to miss out the bit where Cameron and Osbourne have, in effect, sold the UK's infra-structure to the Chinese in return for the City of London becoming China's prime money launders in Europe. Then there is the vastly over priced and illegally subsidised nuclear plant in Somerset that has somehow become the 'deal of the century' courtesy of the Chinese Yuan while the real energy and industrial development advantage in the UK is thrown away on the altar of fracking and UCG; because there is more money in UCG and fracking for the City of London than alternative sources like wind, tidal and hydro. The list of Conservative economic failures could fill a book - UK wages lower than they were ten years ago in real terms courtesy of austerity before even getting into the meat and two veg of the Conservatives Welfare policies and their impact on the UK economy. Seriously, Mr Carson, just how stupid do you think your local electorate are? 

Then there is the Tory Party's competence on defence issues. Last time around they sold off the only aircraft which could be used until (and if) the VSTOL version of the F35 comes to the UK. A squadron of Fr8 Harriers, plus spare aircraft, plus spares, recently refurbished at the UK taxpayers expense to extend their operational life to 2025 were sold to the US Marine Corps for their scrap value in 2010 (remember what I said about Conservative economic competence). In a stroke of the Conservative Minister of Defence's pen the new carriers were rendered expensive white elephants and with Canada pulling out of the F35 program the question arises if the new carriers will ever see a UK aircraft land on their decks.

Leaving aside the well publicised fact the US Pentagon does not want the UK to have next generation Trident and in any case the proposed 'new' system will exit USN by 2080 when the last Ohio class boat is decommissioned as the USN and USAF are stopping any further development work on Trident after 2025 to concentrate on a joint, next generation program. The RN have had to stop building ships so they can afford this monstrosity, the RAF can not fulfill their NATO requirement to provided long range maritime reconnaissance (thus pissing the Norwegian's off) and we have an UK army which is not actually an army because Tory cut backs have reduced it to the equivalent of a NATO division. Yes, Mr Carson, that definitely leaves me thinking defence is safe in Tory hands and Trident is a really good buy, right up there with the Chinese Nuclear Plant deal.

On the NHS in Scotland and public services he has the gall to criticise what is going on and the SNP's use of Scottish funding to prioritise making up the gap between what his party thinks is enough for the old, sick and disabled to live on and what is actually required. Of course he is against land reform because his Tory land owning backers have told him he is, not for any other sensible reason. He is very quiet on the issue of EVEL and silent on the issue of refugees as the problems of the bedroom tax have seen his council housing folk who have been kicked out of their homes in Lancashire, at the expense of Galloway locals who themselves are looking for affordable housing to rent.

There are a lot of questions I would like to ask Mr Carson such as:
  1. Do you actually believe any of the claims made in your 'newsletter'?
  2. What do you think of your leader doing a bunk from Glasgow to Edinburgh to try and ensure she is re-elected on the 'list' - not even constituency?
  3. Why have so many Tory MSPs decided to 'spend more time with their families'?
  4. Do you think you will retain the personal vote that just kept the present Tory incumbent in place last time around, after a recount?
  5. Just what does your party have to offer the Scottish electorate other than 'Dae as yer telt by Lunnon' you stupid Jocks?'
  6. Is your campaign just going to be 'Vote for me because I am not Labour', like it was last time around?
  7. Outside of your Tory pals, do you think anyone else in Galloway is listening to you?
  8. Do you actually care a bean about the constituency, based on your activities as a councillor, much past getting your nose in the bigger Holyrood trough?
 Of course Mr Carson, if he gets wind of this, will be reaching for his twitter account and cry wolf about more nasty, SNP, separatist bullying, just like he did time and time again in the run up to the May 2015 General election. 

Remind me, Mr Carson, how did that work out again? (Tory vote share down 1.7% compared to 2010 as Labour took a gubbing - down 21.2%)

Tuesday, 20 October 2015

It wisnae me ... it's aa Nicola's fault ...

On a scan through my Facebook today I found some person seeking to pin the blame on Cameron's sell off what was left of the UK Steel Industry down the river to China rather than continuing the subsidy to India's steel and iron industry in the form of Tata. Apparently Ms Sturgeon should be held to task as to why she has let this happen and let Chinese Steel build the new Forth Bridge.

I was not going to respond because clearly the man was an utter eedjit, even though he was a Yes supporter, but there is something that irks me when the far lefties have a go like this, so I replied in what I hope was a civilised manner:

"Mr *****, the steel had to come from China, for the new Forth Bridge, as it has the only remaining capacity to produce the quality and sizes of steel required. The question is why is this the case?

The answer is Labour sat on their hands and did nothing as the UK steel industry was shredded to bits by previous Tory Governments, including Blair's. Cameron is merely completing the process Thatcher started. Sadly, like the disillusioned lass on Question Time, you get what you voted for ..... this is karma and the past actions of the UK electorate catching up with us.

To expect Ms Sturgeon to have some sort of magic wand to wave to reverse nearly 40 years of neglect of the UK Steel Industry is a tad naive. Even if we were now heading for independence in 2020, the iron and steel manufacturing base in Scotland is so F'd it will take 20 years to turn around and require massive investment in new plant on which the returns, in the current international iron and steel markets, would be highly suspect.

The real question is why did the left wing, UK steelworkers union try to get its members in Scotland to vote 'No' in the independence referendum when the reward for the steelworkers in voting 'No' turned out to be, Cameron has sold them down the river to China?

Like so much of the 'Project Fear' campaign it turns out what they said would happen in Scotland, on independence is actually their own, longstanding political agenda and can be tagged on to the pension cuts, decimation of welfare provision, privatisation of the NHS in England and all the rest Cameron's Government is now set to inflict on Scotland and the UK.

The left wing in Scotland is as guilty as anyone else for the situation in the steel industry, so instead of blaming Nicola why not have a long hard look at the pathetic mess left wing politics has long been in the UK, too busy fighting each other to mount any serious opposition."

This is just another reason why we are not and never will be 'Better Together' and why RISE will quickly fall.

Monday, 19 October 2015

Blowing the whistle ...

Scotland's rugby side put up yet another 'plucky Scot' performance and were denied because a highly respected international referee, Mr Joubert, made a error in what he saw happening. I will leave the technicalities to the experts but there is a simple rule which is the basis of all team sports, you play to the whistle, right or wrong. 

You might think a supposed 'good chaps' game like 'rugger' that would be that, hard luck boys, you did us proud, better luck next time. Those who have been lucky enough to play at a high level of any sport understand no matter how aggrieved you may feel, it is not going to change the decision and some point down the line you will get a similar decision in your favour. That is the nature of competitive sport at all levels

When you hear a supposed 'great' of the game basically calling for the referee's bollocks as soon as the final whistle blows, then decrying Mr Joubert for walking off at a rush, probably because he had seen the big screen 'slo-mo' and realised what he had done, you really need to stop and dwell a marching step. Ask yourself this simple question, "Did anyone die as a direct result of his decision?

The media is calling for the poor man to be stripped of his international referee status as, all of a sudden, a man thought competent to referee the 2011 World Cup Final is now clearly an utter refereeing imbecile. The media hubris is palpable and falls just short of expecting the South African Authorities to exile the poor man to Robin Island for life.

Back in the real world, a mole in the US State Department has leaked a 'Situation Report' from Conan Powell, US Military Chief of Staff, telling Mr Bush, prior to the Camp David talks, Tony Blair will rubber stamp the Iraq regime change while pretending to seek peaceful resolution through the UN. Now there is a decision, unlike Mr Joubert's, which did cost and is still costing lives.

Just where are the self same London Parish Pump media giants calling for Mr Blair's permanent removal from public life, the reform of the system of governance in the UK and Mr Blair's bollocks on a plate?

You will have to look hard beyond page 2 of the 'The National' for any front page copy in the London Parish Pump Press on Blair's evident lying and distortion on this issue as long as it is the residents of the Middle East who are dying, what does it matter beyond a few crocodile tears?

In the meantime the Russians, the USA and their proxies continue to put even more petrol on the flames in the service of what the USA and Russia see as their own self interest in the Middle East, as the map of who is bombing who from the air and who is murdering who on the ground gets ever more convoluted, now reaching 'Gorgon Knot' proportions. It could be described as being of 'Life of Brian' proportions as the myriad of groups split, fight, kill and realign on a daily basis depending on whether the Shi'ites, Sunni, secularists or Kurds are that day's bad boys, if it was not so serious.

There are three regional states who could bring this to a fairly rapid end. Turkey, Iran and Saudi Arabia given they all have a high level of self interest as what is a supposed, proxy religious war between members of Islam's two major sects across Iraq and Syria. A war which is now coming home to roost in their own territories, with increasing levels of religious, sectarian violence in their own countries. In this alone there should be a high degree of mutual self interest. These three could say stop, cut off funding to their preference groups and look at creating a Middle East version of the EU to give all the ethnic groupings in the region the chance to sort themselves out and undo the lunacy which was the 1919 Balfour Settlement. An equivalent of Alexander taking his sword to the problem of the 'Gorgon Knot'.  If Russia and the US were serious about bringing peace to this area you would see a joint resolution at the UN to this effect but you will not, because neither Russia nor the USA trusts the other as far as they could throw them and does not wish to give up their 'client state' and direct influence in the region via Syria and Israel respectively.

You have the same problem with the two major oil producers, Iran and Saudi Arabia. Neither trusts the other on ethnic or religious grounds as both are inflexible on the 'fact' the others form of Islam is a heresy. Throw in the economic power via oil production Saudi Arabia wields and apart from the deaths of fellow Muslims they have little to bring them together as each sees them self as the major power broker, via religious nutters (aka terrorist groups), in the region. So for now Iran is best pals with Russia and Saudi Arabia is best pals with the USA.

You would think that Turkey, as a more secular and Europhilic state, could act as the catalyst to end the mayhem Bush and Blair's regime change in Iraq has created. Logic says as part of NATO and pretensions to join the EU surely Turkey could bang some heads together as it could be in the country's interest to become the portal of support from the EU to the region.

Yet Turkey finds itself between a rock and a hard place as it still retains political pretensions of being a regional power, hanging over from the days of the Ottoman Empire, and for that reason alone both Iran and Saudi Arabia are united in opposing this perceived threat. A further complication is while Turkey's Muslim population is predominantly Sunni (and so should favour Saudi Arabia) they share the problem of the Kurds (who are seeking their own autonomous state) with Iran. Throw in the increasing differences between the predominantly secular Turks on the European side of the Bosphorus and the Muslim majority in Asia Minor, represented in the growing tensions between Istanbul and Ankara over the increasingly Islamic State style of Government exercised by the capital, and the Turkish Government does not have much in the way of wiggle room itself.

Turkey turning a blind eye to Iranian supported groups attacking the Kurds has brought violence and suicide bombings back on the streets of Turkey's main cities with the end of the Turkish Kurds peace agreement with Ankara. Selling oil on behalf of Saudi's supposed proxies (ISIS) has not made them many friends either. The continuing blockade of their border with Syria annoys both the Russians who wish to support their client state Syria by back door means and the USA who sees the Kurds in the border area as the only effective group on the ground, in Iraq and Syria, who are taking on ISIS.

Now whose decision has had the greatest impact on the world as a whole?

Mr Joubert or Messers Blair and Bush?

Saturday, 17 October 2015

Hiving your bets ..... the SNP Swarm ...

After the skewed headlines by the Gruniad on the SNP conference I am left  wondering just why do they bother sending reporters when they could simply make up the stuff back in London and save on a whole load of expenses.

This week I have read articles suggesting the SNP want Scotland fracked or gassed to bits, have not really built some 60,000 new homes for housing association rental - it is a myth apparently,  there is a rift between the members and the leadership over land reform and yet another Gruniad, 'The SNP bubble has burst' opinion piece which flies in the face of the continuing rise in the high level of support for the SNP in the run up to the May elections for Holyrood which every poll is recording. The Independent is little better, The New Stateman's 'One Party State' cover totally hysterical (in both meanings of the word) while the Torygraph is what it is and the Daily Mail descends ever further into 'National Inquirer: Aliens stole my husband' levels of frothing at the mouth hyperbole, bullshit and myth which even the Daily Star would struggle to give credence to.

Strangely one London journalist, an avowed Tory, discovered the myth that is 'The Scots hate the English and the SNP are the ringleaders' was just that as she shared a late night taxi back from a conference 'Do' with three lady SNP delegates because, "We can't leave you to back to the hotel on your own." What she found even more amazing was Ms Sturgeon did not go around with a protection screen of SPADs running blocking moves on folk they thought she should not speak to her (the norm at normal party conferences apparently) but she spent the evening wandering around with her husband in tow (or not) speaking to ordinary SNP members. Worse for the fairy story grim writers in the London Parish Pump Media our aware Tory even had the piece published in the Huffington Post. I doubt you will see either Torygraph or Daily Mail headlines on Monday which say "Shock Horror, it appears we have been lying about the SNP and its membership all along.

Yesterday I waxed a bit lyrical on the view point of 'Ordered Societies' and why they were driven by schism and oppression, so were inevitably doomed to fail. I also started playing with the idea of the ordered chaos of the individual (swarming) as the the most effective and efficient way to form human societies. 

If you actually look at how a Bee Hive is organised and run it is not actually the queen who is boss. The queen is simply an egg laying machine, the eggs end outcome is controlled by the needs of the worker bees who decide when drones are produced rather than female workers and which female worker eggs can become potential queens. The worker bees randomly wander around the hive while via pheromones and other physical triggers move to act as cooling fans, honey producers, new cell builders and all the different jobs required in a successful hive, in effect they are the ultimate in multi-tasking individuals operating in the best interests of the hive.

The nearest I have been to operating in this way is aboard well run Royal Naval ships. The hive is now a metal ship which is packed with sailors who appear to be, to the outsider, randomly moving around inside and over the ship with little apparent effect on which way the ship is going. Yet each of these sailors can also multi-task to a greater or lesser extent and act at all times in the best interests of the ship with out any direct instruction from the Captain. Why? Because it is mutually beneficial to keep the ship safe. In a RN ship with a swarm mentality you will find a well run, happy and proud bunch of sailors operating with high levels of mutual respect and regard where discipline is rarely a problem apart from minor infringements more to do with young men's high spirits (and the consumption of) than malice.

I have also served on one ship where this was not the case. The First Lieutenant ran the ship as a martinet, sought to set officers into clique's and thought competition was setting the ship's departments against each other. To compound matters the Captain was a weak man and ignored officers requests to seek the First Lieutenant's transfer as the solution to the problems he, as captain, was having with the ship's effectiveness and efficiency. The ship was messy, badly maintained and routinely had to deal with fights between lower deck sailors when ashore. I was lucky enough only to be aboard for transit but found myself endlessly listening to unhappy, demotivated officers and senior rates off loading to me abouty their First Lieutenant and referring to their Captain as the 'Boy Scout Leader'.

Think of any organisation you have been a member of and ask yourself:

  • Why did you join?
  • Why are you still there? 
  • Are you happy and content?
  • Or why did you leave? 
I will hazard a guess that those who have stayed long term in any organisation they have joined is because the culture ticks most of the effective and efficient hive operating boxes or, having left, will have happy memories of their times in the organisation and retain friends who are still there.

So while the SNP membership has expanded exponentially since September 2014 it was interesting to note that conference still felt as if there were only 11,500 members and not the 115,000 currently paying their membership dues. The culture is not the one of mutual and insincere back slapping the Unionist Parties Conferences' epitomise where praise is routinely insincere, 'best wishes' routinely false and the term 'full support' comes with a serious health warning of serial back stabbings.

The SNP Party is more like a well run hive, while individuals do act chaotically and randomly, the ultimate aim is to ensure the SNP Party runs efficiently and effectively in the best interests of Scotland. If sometimes this means us worker bees have to remind the 'Queen' and her close support team who actually runs the hive and to bugger off and think again, from time to time via conference resolutions, is that such a bad thing?

I suggest if the SNP forgets what it is, what makes it such an effective political animal and travels down the path of the Unionist Parties in terms of policy control by a few at the top, its support and membership will collapse.

I leave your good-selves to draw the parallels with the state of the UK Union.

Friday, 16 October 2015

What do I believe in?

Folk know I am a Buddhist but asking me what I 'believe in' leaves me in a state of confusion.

Just what do they mean? 

Is it Santa Clause, the Tooth Fairy, some supernatural theistic deity or multiples there of, maybe it is animism or shamanism which still flourish around the Pacific rim in Asia, Africa and the Americas. How about Voodoo?

To seek to link and treat Buddhism as if it is a major religion with its own Gods or God or even Tooth Fairy is to fundamentally misunderstand what Buddhism is about. In the simplest of terms, as a Buddhist I am seeking by my actions or inaction to do more overall good than harm in the way I live in the world around me. In doing so I understand to some people my actions or inaction will appear to be harmful to themselves and their own needs but it is my own choice and their own view point, as in how 'No' voting friends viewed my campaigning for a 'Yes' vote.

My choice to act or not is based within my own self awareness. The more I understand my own motivations driven by greed and selfishness, the better I can decide on actions or inaction which are truly of the best intention for the greatest positive impact rather than just serving my primary self interest. 

I find as I have moved on in my Buddhist thinking and my own understanding of myself in the world, the less room there is for 'theistic belief' in my life. In terms of the standard theistic world view I 'believe' there are no such things as God or Gods or wood sprites, they have no influence on how I conduct or lead my life as I am solely responsible for what does or does not happen as a direct result of how I act or not.

It is a very scary idea to get your head around the concept you exist not because of some deities 'master plan' but because of the random machinations of universal physical and chemical laws and their impact which has lead us to top the evolutionary tree on our planet, for now. Once you have come to deity free thinking it is liberating, enervating and, dare I say, enlightening. 

Yet in a world where people are constantly seeking 'order' this idea of the world we live in being purely random and open to random influences is terrifying. This is especially true for those who consider themselves to be the governors of humanities morals, wealth and welfare in whose hands belief becomes a weapon of control, discrimination and reward. I suggest you read 'All Things Bright and Beautiful' if you want to understand one example of how the Victorian 'Governors' played the religion card. Everything in its place because 'God' wants it that way, that is why you are poor, your reward will come when you die. In the meantime we are keeping the money, the nice housing, health and blaming your poverty and short lives on yourselves. Once you read 'All Things Bright and Beautiful' with this level of awareness you will quickly find, for yourselves, examples of the modern 'Governors' manipulation of religion, beliefs and moral supremacy to exert their own personal power over the great unwashed for their own fiscal advantage.

Read much of the current output of US Republican supporting media and UK Tory media and you will see this ploy at work. So it becomes logical, in this world of modern day of quasi-religious Governors, the best way to deal with the poorest and sickest in society is to make them ever poorer and sicker as the best way to make them 'stronger' because the subliminal message is 'God Wills It!', even when the official religious authorities takes them to task for their mendacity. Look across the Catholic, Jewish, Hindu and Islamic world view and you see the same ill thought but effective discrimination against anyone who does not 'play ball' or is not 'one of them' and then becomes an open target for 'State' approved violence which generally goes unremarked or if it is remarked on comes in variants of, 'They had it coming'. The Jews suffered from this popular blindness in Europe between 1939 and 1945 yet do not see how it is wrong to behave the same way in the Palestinian Occupied Territories in the present day.

I will leave you with these thoughts to mull over and test against your own experience:
  • Imposing a rigid order and structure on human societies does not work, never has worked and is the cause for most human violence and distress in the world. 
  • Leave any swarm of animals who understand the advantage of cooperation and choice to organise themselves turns out to be the most efficient, effective and peaceful way. 
  • Human beings are swarming, cooperative animals.

Wednesday, 14 October 2015

U-turn, We turn, its nobody's turn.

The back stage Labour press briefers are having a field day as the Blairites and Brownites cry "Foul! This was not what was supposed to happen." as the comfy Chuckle Brothers 'To me, to you' politic of the Oxbridge elites at Westminster is taking a bit of a kicking from the Corbyn / McDonnell axis flexing what was supposed to be its puny political muscle against what was the agreed norm of process and operations at Westminster. A Labour leader and his best chum telling Labour MPs what to do and how to vote because their membership had made clear that is how they should vote. How absolutely and utterly disgusting!

Could they not see that by actually 'giving a shit' the membership would be forcing all their comfy Labour MP backsides through a lobby against what they had already decided was the smart move for their careers. Forcing them into the 'austerity trap' Osborne had set for them and, worse, an embarrassment to all those lobbying companies and donors who had already told them to vote for more austerity and destruction of what is left of the UK's taxpayer funded welfare and health provisions. Just what is going to happen to all the directorships and consultancies they had already lined up for themselves in the health and welfare ALEO's that are going to provide these services in the future, in England and Wales. The pain in their back pockets cried out for vengeance and so we see the hyperbolic and asinine headlines in the London Parish Pump Media from a whole load of folk who thought they had it sussed, Corbyn was weak and ineffective, life would go along as usual, sorted out in the bars and corridors of Westminster with money and favours moving Chuckle Brother like 'To me, to you'.

Denial is a powerful emotion.

The London Parish Pump Media writers could not handle two events in a week puncturing their self righteous bubble. Tom Watson not apologising for pointing out he had nothing to apologise for in dobbing Leon Brittan or Lord Janner to Mr Plod - think of these two poor men's reputations as public figures that the London Parish Pump Media cried crocodiles tears for, think of their families -  but no thought to the damage and destruction their alleged offences or those their high placed public figure chums caused to numerous young people or the evil rings of providers of young people to abuse their cash supported, in children's homes and youth organisations across the UK.

Now Corbyn and his Shadow Chancellor are not doing what they are told to do by the same London Parish Pump media and those who provide them with the poison to write. Disgusting, it is the end of the Labour Party, the party can not survive its MPs being told by the membership what to do. The plebs just do not understand the real impact of what they are asking their MPs to do by voting against the Conservatives Austerity Charter, its a disaster, rather than preventing the economically innumerate 'CAC' this Charter clearly is, becoming law.

Funnily the chaps and chapess's of the London Parish Pump Media did not agree its was all the 'bloody TUC's fault' which is surprising as the TUC (still Labour's biggest funder) has been banging on about opposing this insane charter and the new Trade Union Laws the Conservatives want to impose on the UK to anybody with a tin ear to listen. No, actually addressing the reality was too much for the Pump Media to take in, better just stay in denial, it has to be something else, there must be a 'greater good' obsessing Corbyn to do this to the political status quo off which all feed well. The gears clunked, whirred, clashed and ground for at least thirty seconds before some genius came up with, "Its all the SNPs fault!"

It could only be Corbyn maneuvering to outwit the dastardly SNP who are not playing the Westminster game and actually seeking to represent their electorate and not the status quo. This was Corbyn's stroke of genius to restore Labour's fortunes in Scotland and stop the SNP's Jockistan separatist juggernaut crushing all before it in May 2016. He was stealing a trick from the SNP, claiming he was listening to Labour's membership to wrong foot those nasty separatists, after May 2016 all would settle down again to the usual moribund predictability. This is what this U-turn was all about, phew, what a relief, the Conservatives would get their way once the Jock pretendy parliament was back in Labour's (aka Unionist) control next year.

This could have been a decent hypothesis but only if you were totally ignorant of current voting trends in Scotland for May 2016 which are predicting Labour, the Conservatives and the Libdems could all end up with an even lower vote share for Holyrood than they managed in this year's general election in Scotland.

The real shock could well be that Corbyn has got the Blairite and Brownites on the run, has outwitted their placemen and women on his 'cabinet' who were to ensure St Tony's words were adhered to, the faith remaining unchallenged and has actually got the balls to put a wrecking ball through the Oxbridge Elite consensus ..... the Labour abstentions on the 'CAC' vote will tell us much, much more than those who troop through the lobby with the Tories, a lot about where Labour are actually headed and give those of the London Parish Pump Media the headline (or maybe not): 

"SNP Thwarted, 'CAC' goes through the motions".

Sunday, 11 October 2015

The British Establishment is circling its waggons.

I do not know if you have noticed how, since the end of the Tory Conference, editorials and content in the London Parish Pump Media are increasingly aimed at those upsetting the status quo, especially those who seek to point out just how corrupt, in all manner of ways, those who see themselves as the British arbiters of good taste, public leadership and behaviour actually are.

Today in the Observer we have Nick Cohen attacking Tom Watson MPs work in exposing the levels of child abuse perpetuated as recreation by elements of these folk who consider themselves the great and the good. The scabrous argument against Tom Watson seems to be based on the concept he can not say anything now he is deputy leader of Labour and was he just down right nasty exposing the likes of a Leon Brittain, Lord Janner and other Westminster MPs and Lords whose names he has handed across to Mr Plod. Apparently it is OK to give an 'oik' like a Saville, Gary Glitter or a Rolf Harris a kicking for 'kiddy fiddling' but not the blessed and sainted of the British Establishment.

Cohen takes the biscuit by stating there is no evidence that Leon Brittain was involved either in the abhorrent acts at Dolphin Square and the Palace of Westminster or its cover up. In fact Cohen seeks to claim Dolphin Square was just here say in his malodorous attempt at bringing Tom Watson down to size. Except for the problem of the 1994 Bryn Estyn Childrens Home Abuse inquiry report. This is a report a series of Home Secretaries have refused to publish in full and unredacted and was undertaken in the early 1990's when the initial attempt at a cover effected during Leon Brittain and Nicholas Fairbairn's tenure at the Home Office started coming to bits as a number of allegations of the routine use of children's homes across the UK to groom young boys and girls for sex and then supply them to people in the upper echelons of British Public life, came to light. These allegations were wide spread from children's homes in SW England via Wales, Yorkshire, Northern Ireland all the way to Scotland. These allegations all pointed to a well organised ring of providers protected by 'important people' who used their services. The investigations never looked at the links, just the actual allegations of abuse. It is the 1994 Bryn Estyn Report which time and time again states girls and boys were sent from North Wales to service parties at Dolphin Square and other addresses in London where the great and the good routinely attended. Some of the more acquiescent young people were also exported on from Dolphin Square to Amsterdam to supply 'parties' in the Netherlands and Belgium.

Two of the main providers to Dolphin Square 'parties' of young people were jailed for their own abuse of young people in late 2014 and yet they are both mentioned in the Bryn Estyn and Wiltshire abuse reports as 'known providers' of children as young as ten to gentlemen abusers. This aspect of their activities was never mentioned during either of their trials by the Crown Prosecution Service even though there is sworn evidence of both men having provided children to MPs on more than one occasion. One claimed his operation in Scotland was secure from any police interest due to the status of his clientele and he, like them, was 'untouchable'.

On the issue of Leon Brittain's role in the cover up. It was Norman Tebbitt in an interview in 2014 who stated the Thatcher Cabinet of the early 1980's knew of the cover up of paedophile activities by members of the Palace of Westminster and the British Establishment within the Home Office during Brittain and Fairbairn's tenure. He stated the cabinet turned a blind eye to this cover up as they felt it was in the best interests of Government, stability and did so even though he and others in the cabinet felt sullied and disgusted by the revelations.  He said if he was given the same evidence now he would not agree to any cover up but at the time with Northern Ireland and everything else going on there needed to be cabinet cohesion. Clearly when Mr Cohen did his fact checking, before his scabrous attack on Tom Watson's morals, he missed this key objective fact out in his rush to slap the whitewash on for the British Establishment's behalf.

For all of Tom Watson's faults (of which being a Labour MP is the major starting point) on this affair he has been effective, accurate and precise in his allegations about Saville, Cyril Smith and on down the line with respect to the high level of the users of these paedophile rings. Clearly with the stink around Leon Brittain not going away and Lord Janner increasingly being hung out to dry there are folk at the centre of the cover up and the paedophile activities within the British Establishment who are now increasingly frightened their house of cards is about to come down around their heads. If this serious allegation at the heart of the British Establishment is blown open, just what else will fall out from the ever widening gap of credence in the establishment's activities?

About the only rock Nick Cohen did not throw at Tom Watson in his Observer article was a claim of antisemitism in relation to Janner or Brittain. Maybe that will be next up when Cohen seeks to conflate Watson's support for the Palestinians with Watson's clearly vicious witch hunt on the dead and the dying of the Hebrew faith.

There is a massive brown skyte mark on the crutch of the British Establishment's bloomers and it is only going to get ever bigger and stink ever higher as the many strings to the inherent corruption at the heart of the UK continue to unravel. All the tame London Parish Pump Media in the world is not going to save them when they can not hold it in any longer.

Wednesday, 7 October 2015

Nightmare in Downing Street

Some one posted a Twitter feed on my Facebook time line from a member of the Britains' First (Jockistan) which talked about sending all 'moose limbs' home. This may be an attempt at 'humour' from the knuckle dragging wings of the British Nationalist Orange Order or Rangers Supporters Club (which may well be one and the same) known as Britains' First (Jockistan) and their underlying need to continue to create sectarianism, hatred and division on the grounds of religion, their raison d'etre. Now the footballing home of Scottish sectarianism and religious hatred is being cleaned out by the much maligned and yet apparently successful anti sectarian football laws, these folk are looking for a new home and a new cause. Their leadership is more than happy for them to do so as it deflects from the real, critical and destructive social problems facing not just Scotland but the rest of the UK. In turn this helps the same, at arms length leadership to finger point and tell anyone who wants to read the Daily Mail or Telegraph for the frothing at the mouth ugly sisters, Cochrane and Hjul, in their different guises that Jockistan is just as bad when it comes to hating people like 'Hard Pressed of Tonbridge Wells' or 'Long Suffering of High Wycombe' as these sectarian nutters.

I am not talking about those who nominally lead Britains' First, the UKIP rejects, but the real leadership driving this unceasing charade of ill done to 'English' folks in the Home Counties. These poor 'English' folk who need more protection from the evil separatists of Jockistan or the ungrateful unemployed, sick, old or disabled of the UK or the massed waves of refugees landing on the beaches of England. The great unwashed who each 'English' person (in the Home Counties) carries the personal burden of heavily and unfairly subsidising out of their own pockets. I am talking about Britians' First true leadership who sit around the cabinet table and foist their neo-fascist policies on the majority of the UK electorate who did not vote for them: the current Nightmare in Downing Street. 

Sadly for the perpetrators of this fallacy of Jockistan and its unique hatred of the 'English' there are now few outside the tame Unionist media who buy their snake oil salesmen line. It has come as a shock to many Daily Mail readers as to just how hated the archetypal 'English' chaps, they seek to represent as the real 'English', are around the globe in that most 'English' of sports, rugby. 

The universal rejoicing at their 'superior and world beating' team's early demise from the trophy which was theirs by right, according to their own assumption and sense of predestination, from the Antipodes via North America to Europe, has come as a bit of a shock to those at the heart of their mythical Albion of the superior in all regards to the rest of the Commonwealth, English man or woman. It appears the 'English', as represented by the readership of the Daily Mail or Telegraph, are not held in the high regard they think is their 'due right and privilege' as the founders of the 'British' Empire but very much the opposite. A fact not lost on those with the wit to understand why 80,000 of the UK's great unwashed (aka not readers of the Daily Mail or Telegraph) protested outside the hermetically sealed Tory Party Conference nor the police who were clearly expecting some level of serious violence from the marchers which by and large never arose, leaving their use of police marksmen looking a trifle over the top.

Every time Ian Duncan-Smith tells yet another lie about the scrounging, sickly, unemployed disabled mass of peasants reliant on state hand outs or the likes of Hunt tells us making the poorest people in the UK even poorer is good for them or the UK Taxpayers Alliance claims that poor old folk should be left to die of hypothermia or what ever they actually said, because this is good for the British Taxpayer then they are simply showing the way to the knuckle draggers of Britains' First that being fascists, right wing, racist, ignorant and bitterly prejudiced is just fine by us, in fact it is just like us. After all, the message the current Tory Party Conference is pumping out on a daily basis, all comes down to this:

 "If you are poor, unemployed, old, disabled or sick - be a good fellow and just fuck off and die."

All the BBC or other London based media's pettifogging and dissembling on this core message which is being transmitted daily to our homes, by focusing on Syria and other attempted distractions, has missed the point entirely. We heard what the basket cases in the Tory Cabinet, their party apparatchiks and hangers on actually said and all the spin in the world is not going to hide the nasty and inhumane core message of this Tory Party Conference.

They may think us 'British' outside the Home Counties do not matter now the ballot boxes have been put away for another five years and thus they can do what ever they wish. Yet if this is the case, the real leadership of Britains' First in Downing Street have learned nothing from the fundamental reason why there was 'British' Commonwealth and world wide rejoicing at the English rugby team's abject humiliation and demise.

In this, those who consider themselves to be of the 'British Establishment' are setting themselves up for a catastrophic political fall, a fall which will be triggered, sooner or later, either by another financial crash, an attempt to take the UK into a Middle East War or the up coming EU referendum any of which will see the UK Parliamentary Union fall to bits around their ears and their attempts to pocket their money and run curtailed in the anarchy and popular need for just retribution which may well prevail.

(The term 'English' in this article is being used as it is by the Tory Party and its media to mean white, upper middle class, Conservative Party voter, member or donor. Everyone else is 'British' in Tory speak unless they are 'bloody foreigners' or 'Jock separatists')

Monday, 5 October 2015

Crocodile tears ....

Today the Gruniad is crying crocodile tears that young doctors, who feel no attachment to the NHS having been saddled with in excess of £60,000 in student debt, are walking away to better paying jobs overseas. Of course the Gruniad would like to blame the Tories and their new contract imposition on Junior Doctors or the Juniors Doctor's lack of commitment to the NHS, white washing over the insidious privatisation by other means of the UK's NHS every UK Government has been pursuing since the late 1980's while the British Medical Association acted in a Bishop Nemier like manner;

"First it was the opticians and the BMA said squat
Then it was pharmacy and chiropodry and the BMA said squat
Then it was the dentists and midwives and the BMA said squat.

Now it is 'medicine' and the BMA are squealing like stuck pigs."

Blair's 'competitive tendering' to provide ccompetition between hospital trusts was a fairly fat wedge which lead inevitably to the point where the Tories are now. In the 1990's the dental profession tried to warn the medical world of what was coming their way having watched NHS England Dental contracts being squeezed past the point of no return but the BMA said the UK Government would never do to NHS medicine what they did to NHS dentistry in England. Well all I can say that the BMA's head in the sand attitude has worked out well, has it not?

It is a pity the Gruniad has stayed silent over the last 3 decades while most of the damage was carried out under Thatcher and Blair's NHS England 'marketisation' reforms, damage which brings us to this point where the NHS England's future work force is walking away at a rate all the Nurse Practitioners in the world can not cover, even if they could be trained in time.

NHS Scotland was only turned around when Holyrood politicians remembered the NHS was about delivering patient care and not about political dogma. Whether Dugdale likes this or not the truth is NHS Scotland's turn around has much to do with the stripping out of Labour's NHS Scotland 'competitive' health market, to expect all the problems in terms of manpower and PFI facilities created since the mid 1980's in NHS Scotland by Tory and Labour policy can be resolved by the SNP since 2007 is just one of the many NHS myths her and Ruthie's wittering fails to address while being, unsurprisingly, ignored by the Unionist media. The amazing thing is how since 2007 the SNP have managed to change the direction of NHS Scotland by the amount they have, given the inherent inertia in an organisation of this size. 

The problem is the future of GP services under Labour's plans were so bad that no young doctor would consider being a GP, as a result there has been a long standing shortage of GP trainees in Scotland. It is this shortage combined with the 'baby boomers' of the 1950's and 60' coming to retirement that is creating the current GP crisis in Scotland, not any current inept governance. Simply put, there are not enough GP's in Scotland, their work load is excessive because of this key fact, the cost of joining a medical practice as a partner is seen as prohibitive (medical practices are private partnerships of doctors which take on an NHS contract to provide NHS care), all which combines to make GP practice even less inviting to young doctors already looking down the barrel of a £60,000 debt. The Catch 22 here is, if no new doctors buy into existing practices the medical practices close down, as is now happening across NHS England, leaving the local Health Boards, Trusts and Authorities with major problems achieving their own core, legally binding, provision targets for GP coverage.

The exit of Junior Doctors is not all about money, it is also about job satisfaction which is increasingly in short supply in the NHS across the UK because political dogma rather than patient need has been king since the late 1980's.

NHS Scotland's own decline has not yet bottomed out but at least the decline has been slowed almost to a stop. The issue of the resolution of future GP services provision in Scotland has a long way yet to go to address the inherent problem of young doctors not wanting to train as GPs but rather than bumping heads at least BMA Scotland is active in being part of the solution and has a government at Holyrood seeking to work with them to solve the problem, even if some of the solutions are not to the doctors advantage.