Another Not So Wordless Wednesday

I’m sorry, but I can’t resist sharing this cartoon from today’s Times, and I apologise in advance for the rant which follows:

©️ Times Newspapers

As I’ve said before, I have no pretensions towards being a political blogger or commentator, but I do think of myself as a vaguely intelligent and very concerned citizen. I have always believed the outcome of last year’s referendum was a disaster for my country, and events continue to confirm that belief. The immediate aftermath was an outburst of racist and xenophobic behaviour which had hitherto been latent but was in some way legitimised by the vote, in the eyes of its perpetrators. Since then, the country’s financial base has weakened, every day we seem to hear of another company or financial institution making plans to move away from the UK when we leave the EU. We are being led, lemming-like, towards the cliffs by a bunch of jingoistic, narrow-minded clowns who follow the dogma that they have created, to the exclusion of any sense of reality. And a cynic like me has a hard time believing that any of them is doing this for the good of the country, when it appears that their own self-interest and career ambitions are more likely motivators.

It is abundantly clear that those who led the Leave campaign were as amazed as the rest of us at the result, and that their ‘plans’ were simply a set of vacuous phrases like ‘taking back control,’ which have been shown to be a totally inadequate basis for any serious negotiation over the terms of our departure from the EU. They really are utterly clueless and the cartoon is, unfortunately, an accurate depiction of the state of the UK government. Oh, and they lied to us too, but I’m not going down that path today.

What saddens me even more is that this whole process has somehow become the catalyst and template for similar votes in other countries. The biggest and most obvious example is the US, where it seems that Numpty Trumpty stole his campaign from Vote Leave’s model of phrases and slogans to appeal to the basest parts of human nature, coupled with the repetition of outright lies with no shame whatsoever. Similar far right gains have happened in other countries, notably France and Germany, but thankfully so far the only campaign to result in the involvement of the far right in government has been in Austria.

I’ll probably get some negative comments for this piece: after all, any disagreement with the ‘will of the people’ is apparently ‘unpatriotic.’ And where else have you heard that argument used? Come on, people, this isn’t Zimbabwe or North Korea! Or the US. We live in a messed up world. They say that a picture is worth a thousand words, but this little cartoon symbolises so much more than that. We need to laugh at our politicians: it is the only balm we have to apply to the wounds they are inflicting on us.



No Sleep Till Bedtime

Another day, another reminder from Timehop of a post from bygone years. This was from 2015, the second – and final – time that I took part in National Blog Posting Month. As you can see, it is in itself an edited reworking of a piece I originally wrote in early 2013, about my sleep problems. There are links in the post to the earlier piece, if you want to see the full version.

As usual, I’m sharing this for the benefit of readers who weren’t with me in those previous years – i.e. most of you! The 2015 update makes what I believe to be an important point about ways of keeping our memories safe – as the years go by, those memories fade, and I am often surprised that what I had long held to be true of my past is erroneous. Nothing inherently wrong with that, I guess, but the pedant in me (I am a typical Virgoan, after all) likes to be right!

Enjoy your weekend 😊

Take It Easy

Do you ever look back at a time in your life and think about how much has changed since then? I’m not sufficiently dedicated to keep a daily diary and since I’ve retired there would be a similarity in the entries anyway. To be honest, there are days when I have to check the paper just to see what day it is! However, having started this blog just over two years ago I have a number of pieces I can look back on and, for me at least, they make for an interesting comparison. For example, at the time I was ill with depression I also had major sleep problems, and I wrote about these in January 2013 in my post Sleepless In Epping. I had intended to reproduce it now, but it is quite a long post so instead I’m just giving you an extract:

For quite some…

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