Wednesday, October 31, 2007

The new Black....

It's just amazing, isn't it? How some problems are nowhere last week, last month, last year, last century - but everywhere today? How suddenly, a collective penny drops, and the self appointed fuss-pots and meddlers go into overdrive on blue-sky thinkingisms.

I of course refer to the English Question - the question that cannot be solved - and until recently, the question that could not even be mentioned in respectable circles without accusations of rampant insanity and terminal knuckle-dragging. "What, you're an English Nationalist and you believe in a parliament for England?... Isn't that 'a bit racist' and something to do with the BNP?"

And all of a sudden, in spite of the routine blankage that has gone on for years, the English Question is now the must have accessory, the new political handbag on the arm of Posh Rifkind and the great new 'EQ-Plan' lose pounds' wonder-diet all rolled into one. The English Question is now hot to trot, legitimate, and fully credo'd for discussion because the Tories have now decided it is 'OK' to do so.

And as per usual, it's a Scot who is doing the proposals. As per usual, it is the man residing in the safest blue rinse territory in the country - and by definition living in a microcosm of priviledge and exclusivity who feels he has the legitimacy to speak on behalf of fifty million of the disenfranchised. As per usual his solution is designed to supposedly accommodate the unique conglomeration that is England. As per usual, the solution is a three legged camel and is an insult to fag packet backs everywhere. Not for us, a bog standard model of democracy - we are supposed to embrace the 'Democracy-Lite' Grand Committee model of Rifkind's comb-overed imagination.

And there's the rub. Rifkind's proposals have nothing to do with democracy and the bringing of government back to be the servant of the people where it rightfully belongs. It has everything to do with the preservation of the status quo - and a cynical attempt to dampen down rising English ire. The reason we have arrived at this ill-thought through solution is apparently because of England. England, the complicated. England, the ungovernable (except by know-all Scots). England, the enigma, the troublemaker wrapped in a sheath of amorphous blobbage - a country that cannot, by definition have the gift of national democracy bestowed upon it.

It's a sort of Gordian Knot connundrum of the 21st Century. An insurmountable problem so complicated as to render Britain's finest brains stuck in 'thick as pig shit' mode. Our Gordian Knot - a tangled web of non-democracy, intrigue, lies, evasion and disinterest seems to be ravelling away before our very eyes as politicians everywhere decide that the English Question might, just might require some sort of an answer - and then fail to put forward the only simple solution available in favour of complex formulae based on the price of gold, the phases of the Moon and how often cows fart out the tune of the national anthem....

So how to solve our democratic Gordian Knot? How do we address the desire of 65% of English people for a parliament for England against the snivelling self-serving opportunism of our craven politicians? Back in antiquity, the problem of the Gordian Knot, which had taxed the finest Greek minds for years was solved by a charismatic leader called Alexander the Great who had a bit of an attitude to 'problems'. In a fury, he chopped it off with his sword and chucked it away.

Job done.

And that should serve as a warning to our leaders. The longer they delay the inevitable, the more the people of England will fret, fester and steam - and the more radical will be their demands. We're now less inclined to try and pick our way through the alleged knotty problem of English democracy in favour of Alexander's more final solution. Our sword is about to hit the knot as our sense of persecution grows by the day. Now people are not just demanding a parliament for England - they are beginning to demand complete independence. A federal solution, once seen as far sighted is now increasingly being rated as 'not enough'...

The people in the dock for this appalling state of affairs are our collective political class and their hair-brained schemes at 'do-it-yourself democracy'. It is they who have ruined our relationship with the other home countries, it is they who have bought them off with democratic overload and public service hush money. It is they who have played fast and loose with the union for the price of political advantage and pimpage.

No Grand Committee, no EVoEL, no 2-for-1 deal, no dynamic parish council, no money-back guarantee, no appointed quango, no regional assemblies. We demand a parliament for England - a contract of national democratic obligation between the English electorate and our English politicians - nothing, absolutely nothing less will do.

The lack of English Democratic recognition is not a trend or a fashion accessory - it is a damnable disgrace - and a shameful indictment of political skullduggery and cynical manipulation by the political classes ever eager to keep what they have - at all costs.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Alfred the bloody marvelous....

Today, October 26th is the feast or black letter day of King Alfred the Great. So on this King Alfred’s Day and in memory of him, without whom our nation of England would never have come into existence, I wish you a very happy King Alfred’s Day on this 1080th anniversary of England’s Nations Statehood!

So raise a toast to good King Alfred the Great - the father of our nation!

Note: Alfred, if you are out there in the ether, looking down upon us from a great height, can you come back like quick - your nation really does need you like never before.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Petrol Tensions.....

There has been quite a bit of comment in the transport industry lately concerning the rate at which rural garages are closing. The small independents are finding it increasingly tough to exist when they appear to be little more than tax collectors for the Exchequer. In 1974, there were an estimated 74,000 petrol stations in the UK. By 2000, that figure had fallen to 12,000 - and today there are just 9,300 left. Of course, in urban areas the supermarkets are to blame for selling their petrol as loss leaders - and hence closing down the opposition - but in rural areas, with petrol profit margins increasingly being squeezed, there seems little alternative to closing the petrol station and flogging it off to a red bracered whizz-kid for conversion to a second home...

You'd think the government would recognise the problem and attempt to address it - especially as public transport in rural areas is non existent.....

No surprises then to read this from the Petrol Retailers Association's 'Forecourt' magazine....

'England and Wales also need to catch up with Scotland, where a grant scheme is available for forecourt operators from the Scottish Executive. It is available to help them with capital investment.

The grants are part of the Rural Petrol Stations Grant Scheme (RPSGS), which is one of three grant schemes which make up the Scottish Executive's Rural Transport Fund - set up in 1998 to improve transport in rural areas of Scotland.

The Scottish Executive recognises that cars are a necessity for many people in rural Scotland and it is therefore vital for residents to be able to access a forecourt relatively easily.

According to its website, the scheme was set up "to support the retention of a sustainable and accessible network of fuel supply throughout rural Scotland".

I don't think this could ever be voted through at Westminster (on behalf of the bumkins south of Carlisle) though.... The Scots MPs would never allow it.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Building on England - naturally....

Government lapdog Natural England - (soon to be a bit of an oxymoron if Labour's housing policy gets off the drawing board) has produced a helpful little Press Release explaining exactly why England's Green Belt needs to be built on.

Apparently, it's all to do with 'Greening the Green Belt' - because the existing Green Belt just isn't 'green' enough.... It's a bit too sort of 'monochrome' 'tatty' and 'naff' - not to mention having the odd abandoned supermarket trolley thrown in (the canal).

Being responsible pen-pushers, the lackeys at Natural England have thus provided a suitably damning indictment on this despised and decrepit area of land that everyone in the whole world really hates. In order to right this eyesore - and to get some verdant hues back into the belt, the thoughtful boffins at Natural England have, in their wisdom endorsed the government's plan to recolour the belt from Puke-Green and Offal-Brown to Supa-Soviet-Slate, Its-a-Breezeblock-Blue and Reallygreat-Grey.

The Press Release says -
Time for a greener green belt, says Natural England.
Natural England, the Government’s statutory advisor on landscape, has assessed the case for a review of green belt policy as part of a fresh approach to greening new development.

The Government is seeking a major expansion in house building for social and economic reasons, with around 3 million new homes planned. Natural England’s role is to advise on the implications of this for the natural environment, taking into account the impact of a changing climate, whilst ensuring that everybody has access to high-quality green space.

Natural England's Board agreed at its meeting of 10 October the need for a housing policy that puts green space at the heart of all new development - see Natural England’s pre-scoping paper 'Housing growth and green infrastructure' [90 kb]

Sir Martin Doughty, Natural England’s Chair, said: “The time has come for a greener green belt. We need a 21st century solution to England's housing needs which puts in place a network of green wedges, gaps and corridors, linking the natural environment and people."

Now, I know what you are thinking - aren't we lucky that our glorious government are going to green up our crappy green belts by shoving 3 million houses on them + schools, + factories + all the rest of the relentless concretia that accompanies any such new developments.....

I bet you guys in Scotland and Wales are 'green' with envy that your countryside isn't being 'made greener and improved' with such radical plans?

Yeah, I bet you are.

Prescription charges - it's just an English thing...

Excellent! Gordon Brown's constituents no longer have to pay for prescription charges. I'd like to write more, but I need to sit here and consider just how lucky I am to be a part of the union of the United Kingdom.

What's it all about... sharing for the benefit of all... or shafting the English as per usual?

You decide.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

The BBC gets thrifty.....

The BBC are currently 2 billion down on their budget. Consequently, they are having to make some fairly radical decisions in order to save a few quid here and a couple of million there. But how can this be? The Beeb have always been skint haven't they - so how could they actually ever be in a position to waste our hard earned moula?

Question 1
How much money does the BBC spend per day on taxis and hire cars?

Is it -
a) £15 including a 3-bob tip to Tommy the cab driver.
b)£145.56p because we cannot expect our celeb' talent to get the bus - and anyway, we have a contract with 'Happy-Cab cab hire, Shepherds Bush'.
c) £12,000 - well, we have to ferry a lot of very important people like Natasha Kaplinski around and Mondeos ain't cheap.
d) £50,000 because it's C-Class Merc turbo-testosterone for us - and anyway, we're far too important to ride in Mondeos.

Question 2.
How much money did the BBC spend on entertaining MPs, hangers-on and media luvvies at this year's Glastonbury festival?

Is it -
a) £28 plus a communal barrel of whacky backy
b) £500 not including a complimentary pint of specially brewed Glastonbury mud beer for each visitor.
c) £20,000 because you just have to create a good impression.
d) £70,000 because it's not our money so we don't really give an Arctic Monkeys.

Question 3.
How many people did the BBC send to cover the 2006 World Cup?

Was it -
a) Motty, Lawro, Hansen, a cameraman and a sound engineer.
b) Motty, Lawro, Hansen and a technical staff of 20.
c) Motty, Lawro, Hansen and a technical staff of 20 plus a back up staff of 30 to make sure everything ran smoothly.
d) Motty, Lawro, Hansen and a technical staff of 20 plus a back up staff of 30 plus over 200 hangers on, ne'r do wells, Motty-mates, P.R. dross, glad-handers and highly paid flotsam.... Plus a batallion of caterers making a grand total of over 300 people*.

*ITV sent 64 people and Sky sent under 50.

Question 4.
Jenny Abramsky, the BBC Director of Audio and Music has amassed, (courtesy of a gold plated BBC pension) a retirement wedge of how much money?

Is it -
a) Hardly anything because, like those in the private sector, Jenny's pension wedge has taken a huge hit from the Chancellor and the markets.
b) A modest amount because unlike the private sector, BBC pensions are a bit more flexible to manage.
c) Not that bad really, through careful husbandry and sensible investment management, Jenny should have a contented old age without too much worry.
d) Kerrrching City! Jenny's pension pot is 3.5 million and climbing fast! And if there is a little blip in the markets - no worries, we can just top-up using the 3 billion plus that the public give the Beeb every year.

Sir Michael Lyons, Chair of the BBC Trust - "What we have to make sure is that the BBC squeeze every penny they can out of every licence-fee pound.

Answers - 1,d). 2,d). 3,d). 4,d)

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Call me Nick....

Hi, I'm Nick Cameron, trust me.
Nick Clegg - one of the Machiavellian gang of LibDemmers who have dumped 'The Ming' in a merciless coup is sort of a dead ringer for a young 'Call-me-Dave' don't you think?

Nick, who is expected to become LibDem-Capo after Ming has ritually had his 'Campballs' hacked off and fried before his very eyes, even sounds like Dave - and Dave sounds like Tone - and as everyone knows, Tone likes to think he sounds like God Almighty...

Is this the thickest MP in the House - ever?

Hi! My name's Dawn - and I'm a complete thicko

I know she's got a whole shedful of competition, but I really haven't yet seen anyone from the House act and talk as stupidly as Dawn Primarolo does. She's in a whole dimwitted Beezer-homed league of her own. Every time she appears on the box it's a disaster - she's all the wit and where-with-all of lobotomied deaf comatosed zombie. All the more alarming then to see just how much 'responsibility Ms Primarolo actually has.

Dawn Primarolo - Ministerial Responsibilities
Public health including Regional Public Health Groups, WHO and children's public health; Health improvement national programmes including tobacco and smoking, alcohol, diet and nutrition, physical activity, drugs and drug treatment, obesity, sexual health, accident prevention, abortion, rural health, and deep vein thrombosis; Health inequalities; Food Standards Agency; Health protection, including emergency preparedness, scientific development, pandemic flu, immunisation and international health; Fertility including IVF, Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) and draft Bill (RATE); International and EU business; R&D; Medicines and pharmaceuticals industry including MHRA; NICE; Departmental management

If she's the best on offer then God help the nation's health.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Shock: 'Jerusalem' sung on pitch before last night's rugby spectacle...

Who'd have thought it then? it was simply amazing, wasn't it? There, on the pitch was yer actual big-boned, miked-up operatic singer belting out 'Jerusalem' for all he was worth. The near 80,000 crowd fell silent out of respect - the players' bottom lips collectively quivered as England's unofficial national anthem proved a superb curtain raiser to a titanic struggle of rugby.....

It was great to see - especially when the rendition ended - the crowd erupted into spontaneous applause - and a few tears were wiped away from the cheeks of more than one 18 stone prop-forward. It would have been fantastic to have actually been there don't you think?

"Been where" I hear you ask. You're right, it wasn't Paris and the England-France World Cup semi final - they obviously went with God Save the Queen. No, it was Old Trafford in Manchester and the Rugby League Grand Final between Leeds Rhinos and St Helens.

So, well done to the Rugby League authorities for doing the decent thing and recognising that God Save the Queen is not England's National anthem - and for having the balls to go with Jerusalem as the anthem of choice. The RFU, the FA and the ECB would do well top follow their example.

Monday, October 08, 2007

Alan Titchmarsh - another who doesn't know his Britarse from his England...

Oh dear me. Yet another media bod who gets confused about England and Britain. On today's 'Alan Titchmarsh Show' the great green fingered Yorkshireman introduced his guest Bill Bryson in his capacity as President of the CPRE - the Campaign for the Protection of Rural England.

Now I really do find Titchmarsh to be quite an irritant - he's always going on about Britain and Yorkshire - and then Britain again. I reckon he talks about Britain at least as many times as Great Britain Brown does, and that is simply several hundred times too many. And I seriously wonder about the sanity of this country's women - as apparently, his likeness is the most kissed mannequin in Madame Tussaud's..... There is just no accounting for taste.

Anyway, back to the show - Titchmarsh introduced Bryson as "the President of the Campaign for the Protection of Rural Britain - the CPRE".

Incredible - he just could not utter the 'E' word - even though he gave us the acronym afterwards.

The conversation then meandered along with Titchmarsh subbing 'Britain' in where 'England' should have gone at every opportunity, even though, Bryson's remit is exclusively an English one, he never said a word to correct him.

It's a small, insignificant point - but it illustrates a bigger media agenda - and that is, the obsessional rebranding of England to the population. It has to stop.

Friday, October 05, 2007

England needs her own Haka...

Watching the Rugby Union World Cup on the box, I've been struck by the different Hakas that the participating Polynesian teams like to perform just before kick off. The most famous is the Maori-inspired All Blacks Haka, but the Samoans, Fijians and Tongans also like to get in a bit of cultural intimidation before kick-off.

When Tonga played England last weekend, their version of the Haka, which is called the 'Sipu Tau' is particularly aggressive. They were sort of leaping about only a couple of feet away from the English players, pointing and a-jabbing away into the faces of our boys. Thankfully, the lads are made of finest English beef - and so, with stiff upper lippies standing to attention, they refused to rise to the ritualistic taunting of the Tongans.

But it sort of got me thinking - maybe we should have our own version of the Haka. Then we too can perform in front of our adversaries.... and thereby put the fear of God up them so much, they are beaten before an eyeball can be gouged or a tackle can be flanged.

So what sort of Haka should we have then? Should we whip out the Morris Dancing gear and give them a quick 'Hey-Nonny-Nonny' straight between the eyes? Should we bring a Union Flag with us, so when they start their Haka, we can transfix their captain with the flag staff and claim their islands for the British Empire?..

Probably not.

Then I thought of our history - the version of it that is B.L.L. (Before Lying Labour). Back to the time of Henry V and an epic battle on a foreign field. A battle of courage and daring-do in which the English, outnumbered by a zillion-to-one slaughtered the posh, la-de-dah French on the field of Agincort.

Before the battle, the French has threatened to cut off the first two fingers, (the 'draw' fingers which an archer uses to pull his bow-string) of every English bowman they could find. According to tradition, the English archers heard about this and stood behind their wooden spikes waving their two fingers in the air towards the mounted French Knights. The two fingered salute was born.

It was a taunting insult too far for the French. They charged headlong towards the English line - a gory death and a shattering defeat soon followed as the mighty 'Bodkin' arrowhead propelled by the awesome English long bow did its deadly work...

Yes, I reckon the sight of 15 beefy Englishmen all performing the two fingered salute would do the job just right..... especially against the French.

Jane Tomlinson - cancer hero betrayed (apparently, it's an English thing)....

"Thanks for the fantastic fund raising Jane......
The millions you have made for the NHS will come in really, really handy. All that cash can now go up to Scotland to save cancer patients up there".

"What? You would like to see if this very expensive drug can help save your life?
"Sorry, Jane, expensive new cancer drugs aren't to be wasted on the likes of you - we can obviously only give expensive cancer drugs to those that deserve it - the kind of people who live in Mr Brown's constituency for example"...

Don't ya just love this fantastic United Kingdom of ours?

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Union Jack - super-hero

I came across this Marvel Super-hero a few months ago.... 'Union Jack' is his name, fighting crime, righting wrongs and preserving the union is his game.

I wonder what his secret identity is then?... Maybe he's a philanthropist, or perhaps he's a millionaire businessman, or an ace cub reporter.... or even a well known politician?

Between you and me, I reckon Union Jack is really Gordon Brown in disguise - I mean, you never see them in the same room together, do you?

Holy smoke Union Jack, looks like your arch enemies, 'Middle-aged angry bastard' and his diminutive sidekick 'Little Englander' are out to ram some toxic Dundee-Cakeonite up your jacksy...... Kapow!