Out Now!

Friday, 26 July 2019

Both had a husband called Philip,

But there the resemblance ends. Or does it? 

Mary Tudor suffered a traumatic childhood. Once the darling child of  Henry VIII then publicly reviled as a bastard when Henry acquired a new wife, and the father she adored turned against her. The effect would have broken many, but Mary survived albeit damaged. Theresa May, by all accounts enjoyed a privileged childhood, her only misdemeanour running through a field of wheat.

Both assumed power with varying degrees of approval, in Mary’s case accompanied by the ringing of church bells and a wave of affection. Both disappointed. Mary lost Calais, the last remaining English possession in France. Theresa lost Brexit. For months she trailed around her ‘Withdrawal Deal’ much as poor Mary trailed around her phantom pregnancy, which proved to be a malignant tumour.

As Mary lay dying, she may well have heard the same people, who’d cheered her accession, celebrating her imminent death with bonfires and cat-calls. These are tamer times. The Establishment looks after its own, and kind words will be spoken about Theresa May, few if any believed. In the Keyton household there will be no exulting, no roasting of oxen, but instead a quiet but generous Laphroaig in heartfelt relief,  accepting the fact her successor is no 'Virgin Queen.' 

Friday, 12 July 2019

I'm with Fred R Barnard

Sometimes life gets in the way, and the words won’t come. But luckily, Fred R Barnard comes to the rescue. In 1927 he came up with the quote ‘A picture is worth ten thousand words.’ It was later watered down by others to just ‘a thousand words.’ But I’m with Fred, who was probably in much the same position as myself. Nothing to offer but 6 pictures which by my estimation is a good 60,000 words.*

The first two were taken from an evening walk behind our house. ‘It will be good for you . . . You’ll enjoy it,’ they said. Hmm.

The next batch come from the house of some good friends on the Kymin, which overlooks Monmouth.  Now that, I did enjoy. Friends, a full stomach and fine wine. Even the sky turned up trumps. You can see the ‘sugar loaf’ and the Welsh hills in the far distance, Monmouth immediately below.

For those who like tiresome quibbles  

Friday, 5 July 2019

Counting sheep in wolves clothing

Last night, I tossed and turned in bed, Corbyn and Boris running around my head—a nursery rhyme I could have done without. After several sleepless hours, I worked out what was bothering me. Tom Watson. The prospect of a National Government, a government of ‘unity’ where no unity exists. Either that or a Labour Party in name only attracting or coalescing with other political interest groups.

The problem is the likelihood of a General Election coming sooner than possibly expected. In such a scenario the ‘Establishment’ is caught between a rock and hard place. Does it dislike Brexit so much it’s willing to risk a Jeremy Corbyn government? And against that, how easy would it be with a Boris Johnson alternative? Certainly it's in overdrive maligning both men.

Jeremy Corbyn

Boris Johnson

If we look at the Labour Party first, it’s clear that elements of the deep state are in the process of bringing down Corbyn, using Civil Service slurs that the Labour leader is losing his marbles and/or the sledgehammer of ‘anti-semitism’ to achieve its ends.

I have no doubt there is some anti Semitism in the Labour Party dependent as it is—in some areas—on muslim votes. I also have no doubt that the issue has been exaggerated and weaponised, repeated ad infinitum by a cooperative media until the possibility has become a fixed and unarguable truth. Fixed and unarguable truths are hard to swallow coming from the mouths of such dubious characters as Watson, and the even more unpleasant self-serving creature , Margaret Hodge. But clearly Watson is on manoeuvres.
Tom Watson
Margaret Hodge

Then we come to Boris Johnson. I’m not an ardent and uncritical fan of Boris. His flaws are apparent. But it is clear he is in the eye of the storm in terms of media flak. No doubt there is hope that his ‘opportunistic streak’ will see him bend to ‘reality’ and that like Jeremy Hunt he will be another ‘Theresa May in trousers.' But the greater fear is that he won’t, and thus, day after day sees the steady and incessant drip of media poison. News is made as much as reported.

So—assuming a Johnson premiership— as October 31st approaches and Brexit looms near, the Establishment is caught between two stools. Will it even contemplate derailing Brexit at the expense of a Corbyn government, and is this what the current anti-semitism hysteria all about? 

If there is a coup against Corbyn it will take place in the next few months or just after the end of October. The Establishment would much rather see men like Keir Starmer and Tom Watson as kingmakers in the chaos of a failed Brexit. And if one of the consequences is the destruction of the two major parties, then a National Government, perhaps even without elections, becomes a feasible prospect. 

Disgruntled with the whole damn business, I went to the toilet and eventually fell asleep.