The Judge RANTS!
"Hi there! Nice To Be With You. Happy You Could Stick Around"
How ya doin'?
Oh, nothing really. As I've remarked before, the things which are going on in our world nowadays are so impervious to serious analysis that even making the attempt seems to be merely adding another bucket of typhus-infected water to an already poisoned well.
I just don't have the inclination anymore to spend a couple of hours at a stretch outlining a coherent - or even incoherent - description of what feel like the advance events of a secular End Times. For one thing, it isn't going to make a ha'porth of difference to the outcome if I did; and, secondly, just like I've long suspected that Jamaicans deliberately change their patois whenever they suspect that Whitey has caught up with it, some existential Loki would come right along immediately and change everything so that what I had just written would make as much sense as a palimpsest in a manuscript of mediaeval theology.
All the above is, of course, a long-winded way of saying that I can't be arsed right now. Indeed, I've started seriously to wonder whether this site - like all semi-living things - has reached somewhere near its natural term.
Should this turn out to be the case, let it not become a cause for weeping in the street; I can remember blogs which appeared to be certain to go on forever - Septicisle, Mr. Eugenides, Heresy Corner and Chicken Yoghurt to name but four - which have nonetheless all vanished into the Wayback Machine without the Universe closing in on itself as a result.
Philip Challinor is still going though, and long may he continue.
Still, I suppose some sort of effort has to be made, if only to rescue Philip from having to tweet links to stuff I posted over nine years ago.
So, what to do? And how? Well, Jeffrey St. Clair, the editor of Counterpunch, has a regular column entitled Roaming Charges, in which he covers a lot of ground in a sequence of short paragraphs. Some of them dovetail together, some of them don't. It might be worth a try at emulating him just to get all this stuff out of the house. So...
- Do you ever go through a spell of annoying little things happening which - whilst being of no consequence in themselves individually - have a cumulative effect which causes apoplexy? In my case recently, this has included (but has not been confined to): a sliver of one of my lower front teeth splitting off; the gales we endured last Saturday morning not only scattering the contents of the bin about the landscape but also dislodging the outlet pipe from the sink, leading to a cascade of dirty water into the cupboard below; finding that not only can the pre-installed apps on my phone not be deleted, but you can't get them to move from the miserly 8GB onboard memory to the 64GB SD card either; discovering that the banisters that you are trying to repaint have no fewer than four previous layers on them, but that the top two are white, the third dark brown and the fourth white again, necessitating the use of a hot-air gun to get shot of them all; the process of doing this setting off the smoke alarms every two minutes; and Sainsbury's never having in stock two or three items which you've been buying from there for years.
- Following on from this, we have now been told that our office will close at the end of September 2020, which is six months earlier than originally proposed, and which came as a surprise to hardly any of us.
Oh, don't feel sorry for me, please; by that time, I will be fifty-eight and they will have to make me some sort of offer of redundancy or early retirement, although they have timed things so that the terms of these will be disadvantageous in comparison with how things would have been earlier. I can't say I'm too bothered by this; my 'gold-plated pension' (© every right-wing rag in the country) was always going to be crap, but twenty-eight and a half years sitting at a desk with malfunctioning technology and similarly competent senior management is more than enough for one lifetime; it's certainly no way for a grown man to spend his days.
Spare your concerns for those who are going to have to go on working and so will have to find somewhere else to go. Indeed, many have already gone - mostly to the detested Department for Whipping the Proles - and it can't be said that office morale is at rock bottom, if only because there is no morale left to sink any further.
- In what we flatter ourselves into thinking is The Real World™, things continue gloriously to go to shit.
The concerted effort on the part of the US and its very willing accomplices around the region and around the planet in general to overthrow the democratically-elected government of Venezuela continues apace, and looks like it might succeed this time, despite opposition from the overwhelming majority of the general populace. The concern for those people shown by the massed ranks of vulture capitalists is, of course, utterly fake; but the control of the story by them and their totally-owned media subsidiaries has ensured that people in general now think that President Maduro is The New Saddam (when he's not being The New Hitler, of course). And so does people's democracy perish, throttled by the vain, the venal and the vindictive.
- Speaking of whom, Br**it proceeds. I think it's probably best to let it, if only because I am greatly looking forward to seeing the deliquescent pile of steaming gammon suddenly realising that things like easy trade and freedom of movement actually do affect them after all. I was deeply amused to see television interviews with some of the Greater Gammonian immigrants to Spain, in which one could perceive behind their eyes that it was finally dawning on them that they had not only shot themselves in the foot, but had eaten what was left of said extremity as well. What a shame it seems only to have hit home with them when faced with the prospect of their pooch's pet passport no longer being honoured!
Back in The Olde Country, however, the same rampant delusions wander undeterred and unameliorated throughout the land, and the demands for the hardest possible departure ("Hurt me! Hurt me!") congeal into a species of religious dogma. For, just as the Poor White Trash in the US consistently vote for a party of sociopathic billionaires who shaft them every which way "becahz, JEEYZUSS!", so their coevals here vote for their own future impoverishment at the hands of that 'élite' whom they despise so much that they voted permanently to empower them to the max "becoz BLUE PASSPORTS!!". The psychopathology is the same; the clueless in pursuit of the mindless.
It has been the gravest misfortune of the sixty-six million or so subjects of the Greater England State that it has had to endure, at one and the same time, the most vicious, vindictive and venal government in living memory and the most vapid, vacillating and vacuous Official 'Opposition' in generations. Corbyn's wriggling on the whole issue - torn between what in fairness could be called a sense of public-spiritedness on the one hand and the malign influence of the Stalinist posh-boy Seumas Milne at his side - has so severely damaged his and his party's 'brand' that their call for yet another election is rendered ludicrous. At a time when the main opposition party should consistently be seven or eight percentage points up, Labour can't even achieve parity in four opinion polls out of every five.
And don't talk to me about a 'People's Vote', please. The outcome of such an exercise would be determined - as it was last time - by the amount of shit flung at the public by the enraged monkeys behind the bars of the Fourth Estate, and would lead to a similarly orduriously inconclusive result.
- Speaking of people voting brings me to the events taking place in Madrid as I write, where a dozen people whose 'crime' was to advocate and practice democracy stand arraigned before the full might of a controlling, centralist and reactionary State. Yes, it's that ongoing offence against liberal values called The Kingdom of Spain, and its attempts to put non-violent activist leaders and democratically-elected politicians in prison for a decade or two for daring to do what the people of their nation asked them to do.
Consider that: most of those in court have been imprisoned without trial for well over a year and prevented from having any substantial contact with their families; that for most of that time they have been held hundreds of kilometres from home; that they have been forbidden from using their own mother tongue in the proceedings; that the apparatchiks of the Castilian Supreme Court who are hearing the case are all appointees of successive Madrid régimes; that that court has forbidden international observers; and that the whole thing is being televised live; consider that, as I say, and it is not hyperbole to say that we are witnessing the first political Show Trial in Europe since the Fall Of The Wall®.
And still the response (if one could use the term) of the EU's Council, Commission and (to a large degree) Parliament has been a complicit and cowardly silence. There may be, to quote one of them, a Special Place In Hell for those like Tusk, Juncker and Verhofstadt who stand mute when faced with such an outrage.
- And here, in Greater Gammonia's first colony (and almost certainly its last; even the Malvinas sheep look more likely to jump ship first), the process of eradicating our identity goes on. Whether it is the dumping of England's radioactive waste in the waters off our capital city; or the dumping of its similarly undesirable human effluent in our towns and villages with the eager connivance of 'our' 'government' and its catspaws in the so-called 'third sector'; or the wiping of our flag off world-wide advertising of our foodstuffs; or the production by the England Broadcorping Castration of an alleged comedy which is set in the north of our land but features actors with accents from the other end of the country altogether ("wehl, it's awl Welsh, dahlings, isn't it?") to provide the gumby chorus for a bunch of imported luvvies remaking How Green Was My Dialogue Coach; or the deliberate vandalising of one of the monuments to our rape at the hands of the colonial power; which ever one it is, it is clear that there is a concerted campaign by the imperial state and its useful idiots in our land to denigrate, weaken and ultimately destroy our sense of nationhood.
Previous generations - faced with lesser threats than this - campaigned and fought and went to prison to stop such a process succeeding. Are we at the stage where the werin bobl of popular national self-mythologising are now so apathetic, so deracinated and so cowardly that nothing of any consequence will happen to act as an essential resistence?
Well, m'dears, I've run out of things to tell you for now. I may return, possibly to mark the start of Year Zero at the end of next month. Mind how you go...