Birthday Joke

I happen to share my birthday with Gerry Adams, infamous person of note from Belfast.

When he was asked how many candles he was going to blow out today, he replied:

  • This was an absolute insult to the nationalist people of the Six Counties, and indeed, the whole of the island of Ireland.
  • He had never had any involvement at all in the blowing out of any candle.
  • However, he did have close contact with the IRA Army Council, to whom he would place a fervent request to cease such activities forthwith.

Have a totally innocent and uninvolved day, won’t you!

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The West Brits?

I’m sure this piece from the Belfast Telegraph will have you either shouting in fuuuuuuuuuuuurious anger or smirking with amusement.

I’m just waiting for Varadkar asking London if Eire can become part of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland again.  Doubtless he will ride into Downing Street on Shergar with Elvis Presley providing the welcoming music.

Oh, and happy birthday to Gerry Adams, who happens to share the same birthday (today) as me.  I’m sure his birthday cake is not the only thing he’s ever been responsible for blowing up/out…

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Have a united day, won’t you!

No lessons from history

A very well-analysed article.

Lion & Unicorn

Past performance, as they say in financial services, is not an indicator of future outcomes. The same is true in politics.

There are some broad lessons one can draw from history: the British electorate tend to vote solely on domestic issues, for example, as Winston Churchill found out in 1945, and Tony Blair in 2005 – and possibly Theresa May this year. But there are times when one has to admit that looking at the past is no help at all; the present really is a different country.

Which is pretty much the case right now. We haven’t been anywhere like this in modern times.

You can see some parallels, of course. Maybe the late 1970s, when living standards fell, with prices rising faster than wages, and there was a loss of faith in the future. We also then had a government expressing doubts about the economic policies that had…

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Memories of Robin Hood’s Bay.

Some wonderful photojournalism from a former classmate of mine. Not just a blogger, but also a published author.

Liz Taylorson

The setting of Robin Hood’s Bay, the little old fishing village just south of Whitby on the North Yorkshire Coast was one of the key inspirations for “The Little Church By the Sea” and it’s a place I’ve been visiting all my life.

When I was little, I used to be taken to “Bay” to visit a friend of my mother’s who lived in one of the the new houses at the top of the bank. I loved the view from her garden over the village to beach and the bay beyond, and I especially loved going to visit in the winter when the weather was stormy, but it was cosy in her house looking out over the sweep of the bay.

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I also loved the old village with its twisting paths and cottages – we went to see the ancient little cottage that had once belonged to this friend’s…

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P45-Gate

Poor old Theresa May.  Here’s one assessment of her speech today, from Reaction, which is right-of-centre.   Worth sharing this article.

Reaction

Oh dear. That went well. After three months of painstakingly trying to shake off the “weak and wobbly” label, poor Theresa May had an absolute nightmare of a conference speech today. More or less everything that could go wrong did – coughing, protest, the set falling apart, aides walking onto the stage with glasses of water, the Chancellor popping up with a throat lozenge, a voice giving way – it was all there. What was intended to be a personal, powerful speech proving that she has what it takes to be Prime Minister became an excruciating display of fragility. 

Interestingly though, the public reception has so far been mixed. Although many will think that this will be the straw that broke the camel’s back, others may feel that she showed humanity, grit and determination in difficult circumstances. The jury is out, but Tory MPs and ministers are already talking about how she might be replaced rapidly. There seems to be a full-blown leadership crisis underway. For more on this, read Iain Martin’s article below. 

The row somewhat rescued Boris, who was having his own very Boris-esque crisis. At a fringe event yesterday, the gaffe-prone foreign secretary said that the Libyan city Sirte could be the new Dubai, adding, “all they have to do is clear the dead bodies away”.  

The comments sparked anger, with Labour (ironic, considering Corbyn’s IRA sympathies) calling them “crass, callous and cruel” and Conservative MPs Anna Soubry and Heidi Allen saying he should be sacked. Mr Johnson claimed his critics had “no knowledge or understanding of Libya” and accused them of playing politics. That’ll go down well with Soubry. 

In Trump-land, Rex Tillerson, United States Secretary of State, has quashed rumours that he is planning to resign. In a North Korea style press conference today, Tillerson said that he “has no plans to resign” and will stay in his position “as long as the president thinks I can be useful to achieving his objectives”. The row kicked off last weekend when the President publicly humiliated the Secretary of State on Twitter, saying that he was “wasting time trying to negotiate with Little Rocket Man”. When asked today whether Tillerson had called Trump a “moron” for his comments (as reported by NBC) the Secretary of State declined to answer, saying that he wouldn’t “get drawn in to that sort of pettiness”.

So that’s a yes then. 

Olivia Utley
News Editor
Reaction

 

Pads Brat Ways: Part 94

I’ve been off ill the past three days.  Bit of a cold/man flu.  Symptoms not important.  I think of how the pads brat/military family attitude varies from that of “bl00dy civvies.”

Had I been ill with these symptoms as a pads brat, what would my mum have said?  Probably:

You’re still bl00dy well going to school in the morning.  I’m not having you staying at home, coughing and spluttering, like you’re bl00dy well going to die, making the bl00dy place look untidy.

Maybe on a good day, i.e. when I was off my food and sweating like a menopausal woman sitting in a sauna after eating a vindaloo curry, she’d relent and even let me lie on the living room sofa and even, and even, let me watch Crown Court, with its Ohrwurm theme tune, on TV.

Mhairi, author of the excellent Diary of the Menopause blog, may hopefully one day tell us of the day her mother sent her to school, when Mhairi had mumps.  Yes, mumps, fellas!  Ouch!

Instead, the last three days, I’ve been watching Auf Wiedersehen Pet on DVD and a few documentary programmes about the fall of the GDR, Unsere Republik.  On my own.  In peace and quiet.

Today I got bored senseless and left my house to go shopping.

Have a healthy day, won’t you!

Disunity In The Tory Party And What It Means For The Country

Thought-provoking article.

politicalcakestand

The Conservative Party traditionally involves many career politicians with ambitions of getting a senior post in the cabinet or becoming prime minister.

Of course they also want to form a government or – more accurately – be/remain in power. Theresa May, however, is now threatening that vision which is why a rebellion triggered by leadership hopefuls or backbenchers could be highly likely at some point – especially after May announced that she would fight the next election. I don’t think that (former) Tory MPs will forget either losing their seat or having had a drastically reduced vote share.

Compared to the danger for single Tory politicians whose prospects of staying in power are slowly fading, the danger of a shambolic government that still is in power is far greater for the general public.

The Tories are for example utterly disunited on Brexit (eg Johnson’s article in the Daily Telegraph). There…

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