Wonder if he has been banned?
Posts that deal with historical aspects of conservatism
Google, the boot on the throat of the internet
Google have decided that they are the arbiters of internet approvals.
They have decided that they are fully justified in deciding what another company should regulate in it’s own space. They have decided to remove Parler from their App Store because Parler refuses to proactively supervise and ban user content.
This is not how Google wishes the internet to run.
Google are not friends of free expression and free speech.
People who work for Google need to seriously examine what they are working for and toward.
British Fishing Industry – Part 1
Above is a picture of a trawler. Trawlers are fishing boats that pull their nets along the sea bottom and they are mainly concerned with catching flat fish (which tend to live on the bottom) and other, bigger fish that live at greater depths like Cod, Ling and others.
The boat above is a Lowestoft Trawler – all boats that used to sail out of Lowestoft had an LT number. It is a “Side Dragger” which is the type of trawler that streams its net over one side or the other and pulls it along the sea bed. If you look at the picture and just to the right of the number LT 555 there is a device called the “gallows” it is where one of the two steel warps go that hold the net. There is one to the stern of the ship but it is harder to see.
The reason why I have started this blog post in this manner is because – that is the type of trawler I sailed on in the mid 1970’s out of Lowestoft.
It is that personal connection which prompted me to write this blog post.
In the recently concluded Brexit trade negotiations which went into effect in the UK at 11pm December 31st 2020, one of the most hotly contested areas was fishing rights.
I heard today that the total size, employment of the British Fishing industry is now around 10 or 12 thousand people. In the 1970’s it was around 25,000 people. Since 1990 the Fishing fleet has shrunk by 47%. When I sailed out of Lowestoft in 1974 through 76 there were, I think around one hundred trawlers that sailed from the port. When my wife and I stopped by Lowestoft in 2001 so that I could show her where I had worked – there were only three boats left. The big Companies – Boston Deep Sea, East Coast Fisheries, Fleetwood had all gone. The only one left was the small outfit called Colne and they had shrunk dramatically. 3 Ships. That’s all.
So my own observation does bear out the reported statistics.
I actually understand why the British Government felt that they could compromise with the EU on Fishing rights. And it has nothing to do with “betraying the British Fishing Industry”. The truth is that the British Fishing industry needs to be built up – the infrastructure of ships, maintenance, markets, finances need to be re-established. Fishermen need ot be recruited and trained – you could build more boats but who would skipper them?
The fishing industry went for bigger, more powerful trawlers, big stern draggers that could hold much more fish and travel further. Perhaps now the better idea might be to go with smaller vessels, more modern and safer and can be viable with smaller catches.
There are far too many different threads to this story for one posting to cover. My next one on this subject will be about the boat designs a subject which has fascinated me for a long time.
And … Boris is a Good Guy Again
At 11pm on December 31st 2020 Britain (and Europe) finally reached the end of an exhausting 4 or more years of preliminary disentanglement.
I say “preliminary dis-entanglement” because, of course, Britain and the various parts of Europe are impossible to “disentangle” after centuries of getting fully entangled with language, culture, custom, business, commerce and so on and those will NOT be being untangled. British people will continue to buy properties in France or Cyprus or Spain for their retirements and European banks and business will be going to London to arranged the various finances they need.
So what has it all been about then?
Sovereignty. In a word. This is something that , reportedly, the Eurocrats really never got to grasp especially their chief negotiator Michel Barnier . There were reports in the British Press that Barnier got exasperated with the British negotiating team always bringing up the very subject of Sovereignty.
And this is, I think, the crucial point in this whole process. It is, to me at least, very amusing that a large part of the British working class and working middle class understood that concept clearly and embraced it. The people who had, and have the hardest time dealing with leaving are the intellectual ‘Snobocracy’ that infest Britain. These are the people on the BBC who agonized over the result of the vote. The same sort that like to order or flame or suggest that everyone should obey the “rules” when they, themselves think the rules do not apply to them.
I think the people of Britain want the final word on what applies to them. And, in the end that is what they have.
Yes, it may well be that Britain will go along with some EU rules – but it will go along with the rules that its own Parliament passes. And, if the British people don’t like it then they can vote those MPs out and change the rules. Without consulting the vast European Bureaucracy.
Sovereignty. It is a big word, it is a mighty concept and it is finally back in the hands of the British People.
Well played Boris. Well played David frost and the negotiating team. And VERY Well played Nigel Farage .
The fluidity of Communist “Loyalty”
I have been wading through, or in and out of, a mammoth book – the second book in a trilogy about Communist Dictator Joseph Stalin. The Second book in this painstakingly researched and notated series is called “Waiting for Hitler 1929-1941”. I am not trying to work my way through the book page by page – the sheer amount of trivia recorded is almost impossible to follow. Instead I use it as a sort of “pot luck bag” I open it up at some random spot and I start reading. And wow, does that give some real glimpses into the evolution of a Communist State. Fascinating stuff.
Today I opened up the book at page 364 – (less than half way through) – and found myself reading a segment about the Comintern and its baleful influence on, of all obscure things, the Spanish Civil War. I was intrigued because I had just listened to a song written by the tedious old lefty, Christy Moore called “La Quinta Brigada” praising Irish Republican support for the Communist side in the Spanish Civil War. The main object of Moore’s praise is IRA member and left winger Frank Ryan. Bear with me here – the story is going to get even more involved.
What attracted my interest in the book was not, as it happens, La Quinta Brigada and Moore’s chirpy anthem to communist ambition. It was a note that says;
“Stalin ordered the Comintern to have the Spanish Communists intensify the ‘complete and final annihilation’ of the Spanish ‘Trotskyites’ as ‘agents of fascism’ “
The organization they were targeting was named “POUM” – which is a Spanish acronym for “Workers’ Party of Marxist Unification” and whose members were fighting in “La Quinta Brigada” alongside the very people who were being instructed to wipe them out! One of the leaders of POUM was named Andreu Nin and he was arrested by the Russian Secret Service (the NKVD) IN SPAIN and tortured to death!
In the meantime our leftist Saint, Frank Ryan was captured in the Civil War by the Nationalist side (Franco’s forces) accused of murder, sentenced to death by a Court Martial and stuck in Borgos Prison. In 1940, his sentence having been reduced to 30 years, he was released, thanks to some connections between the Irish minister to Spain and the German Government, into the custody of the German Intelligence Service – the Abwehr. He was taken to Berlin where he was persuaded to take part in various operations to support the IRA and to attack British and American interests. Nothing that he did seems to have born much fruit and, in 1944, he died of pleurisy and pneumonia in Berlin. He was buried in Dresden, and in 1979 his remains were repatriated to ingratiating praise and public display from his former comrades. They were loud in their assurances that ‘Auld Frank” had never abandoned his leftist views, even when he was living well in Germany as an agent of one the most reviled regimes in history.
There are, I think, two points in this little, bizarre, historical drama. One is that the left is totalitarian in its structure and outlook. It “progressively” attacks factions in its own structure that it perceives as “not really ‘true’ “ and that Keeping themselves more pure is more important to them than the welfare of the people they are claiming responsibility over. The second point is – that if the IRA and its leftist wing see no difference at all in working either for Joe Stalin or Adolf Hitler – then there really is no difference between them.
No room for Diffidence in defending Rights.
I think that, in this day and age, the Conservative needs to re-assert it’s pre-eminent reason for being.
That all individuals have rights.
They do not have “rights” that some government allows them to have. They have rights because they are a person. Pure and simple. Their first right is to own themselves, from that right comes to right to the results of their own industry and imagination. They have the right to defend themselves from anyone who seeks to deny those rights.
The USA was the first country to be founded on the idea that it is the people who form government. We have a country because the US People say that we do. Not the politicians. The rights of the individuals in this country were set down, by the people and were a part of the basis of setting this country up.
We as Conservatives need to defend every citizens rights as laid out in the Constitution. Without exception. For example if someone gets shot down by the authorities – the investigation of that incident needs to be both public and transparent. And we should be in the forefront of that demand.
Likewise if someone is threatening to stifle free speech in the public arena – and if the Government is a part of that movement it MUST be actively opposed. It must not be tolerated. We have allowed our public Universities to become hot beds of intolerance – the exact opposite of what they are supposed to embrace. If a University receives Government funds, from grants, from guarantees on Student Loans or any other tax-payer fund or entity then it MUST support the Bill of Rights without reservation. If it does not, all state funding must be withdrawn – immediately. The University must become entirely a Private Venture and must support itself from that.
Any politician or Public Employee who has taken an oath to “support and defend the Constitution..” Who then uses that position to advocate against the Rights contained in the Constitution or who votes to do so – is guilty of perjury and we must press for their impeachment and removal from whatever office it is that they hold.
We need to to be active in our support of Rights. Not, reactive. We must be positive and forceful in our advocating for our rights.
Boris the Loris
Boris Johnson is, without a doubt, the biggest political disappointment in my personal panoply of choices throughout my life.
When Boris wriggled his way into the limelight and he looked like he was going to be the man to actually lead Great Britain into the new golden age. Giving the impression to the electorate that he was going to be ferocious in their interest. He was going to be the firm and confident hand that would guide Britain out of Europe, would be the man to make trade agreements and alliances throughout the globe and who would also start pushing the advantages of infrastructure toward the north of the country.
Then came Covid 19.
And the pressure of the crisis revealed the true character of Boris Johnson. He got infected and had a rough time of it. Contrast his approach to getting the disease, to the 74 year old Donald Trump who was fiercely brash about getting over it as soon as he could, pushing his medical staff to treat him with Regeneron, an experimental antibody cocktail, to excellent result. Boris was very ill. Maybe he tried to get back too fast -but whatever reason he has become almost hors de combat in the real challenges facing Britain. He has been seen to ally himself to The Great “Green” Proposed swindle.
Boris has laid forward a plan to ban the sale of petrol and diesel vehicles in the UK in 2030. A masterly piece of seeming to be revolutionary and visionary without actually taking responsibility for what actually happens. In 2030 working people in the UK will be forced to take on expensive-to-buy and maintain electric vehicles, most of the people will try to cling onto the cars they already paid for and own and try to get even more mileage out of them because they will lack the spare 20K Pounds or so to afford the rich libs’ toy. But that doesn’t seem to worry Boris – after all the chances he will be PM in 2030? Crashing madly toward zero as things stand.
He claims to be an environmental “believer” yet he is embarking on a course which is going to require the extraction and production of untold millions of batteries requiring huge supplies of mined materials. All of which are abroad, all of which will be imported. He will dump this on the British people and economy in the hope that no-one has a clue as to what is going to happen when, after around 8 years the batteries in the new cars are going to need to be replaced – and what will happen with the extremely polluting used ones?
The title of this article is “Boris the Loris”.
Most people don’t know that a Slow Loris is a cute furry little mammal that has one outstanding characteristic. It is venomous. The only primate that is (and one of only very few mammals).
Perhaps the one comfort we can take from “Boris the Loris” and his venomous behavior, is that when the fight comes over the Green Scam , Boris’s support for that planned scam will be as poisonous and toxic as his plan to lead Britain to greatness was.
Idiot Khan and Dick loose in London
Sadiq Khan is Mayor of London. He is a pompous blowhard who pretends to a socially progressive agenda. There appears to be no racist trope that he does not subscribe to.
The Guardian Newspaper in the UK is a squishy liberal apologist toilet roll of a publication.
Here is a link to an article that is in The Guardian and about Sadiq Khan’s plans for the Metropolitan Police force in London.
The astounding thing is that the article comes within a gnat’s whisker of actually being useful.
I am, personally, not a fan of the British Police as an institution. In fact in many ways I despise their performance and management. But! The police I knew who lived where I lived? Not a problem at all. They knew most of us, they drank in the same pub. Somewhere in the 60’s and 70’s the Home Office decided that it needed to cheapen the police force and spread it thinner so that it would appear that they were being “efficient” and the era of “Panda Cars” was born. By the years at the start of the new millennium they had become “Pander Cars” in that the police sat in the cars and ignored what they were seeing in areas like Rotherham, Manchester, Oxford, Huddersfield, Rochdale. They missed or enabled or tolerated the activities of known sexual abusers because they were afriad (in some cases) of being seen as “racist”. That is th elevel of the leadership in the police forces of Britain today. Too afraid to deal with crime but very sensitive to criticism of being racist.
And now Khan and the current “leader” of the met Police , Cressida Dick, want to validate the fear of racism by balkanizing policing in the British capital based on race.
If only they had followed through on the original thought – recruit people from the community. Not by race. Just people who wish to be of service to their town, village, area, . Recruit and do the requisite, thorough, background checks, give these men and women solid , professional training and a rewarding job and career. Keep them trained, keep them there. Subsidized housing, professional treatment. Have a strata of support but defer to the leadership of the local constable in all matters in the local community. ALL MATTERS. Stop treating the people who sit in offices as the “elite” and start treating the “plods” as the elite.
Above all – stop trying to treat policing in the communities as an afterthought and start with respect.
Let Khan and Dick run this kind of thing and you will have a racially stratified police and community where merely talking to someone is going to become a careful algorithm of race, class, location, language – even caste. That will reduce policing and move even more resources not into policing the community but in servicing the slew of racial requirements using increasing numbers of civil servants eating the policing budget.
Billionaire Socialist is an Oxymoron.
Why do Billionaires pay for the Democrat Party? Why does so much of the “old Money” in San Francisco, LA, New York, Boston help fund the party that is, supposedly, the party of Marx, Engels, Trotsky and Lenin?
Well… could it be they are concerned about not paying their fair share of the national need? Is it because they think the gap between have and have not in society needs to be reduced and that Dems are the troops for the job? Could it be that the likes of Hoyer, Bloomberg, Hoffman, Powell Jobs, Geffen Benioff and the long list of Dem billionaire donors are so filled with their gut wrenching guilt over their “whiteness” that they feel they need to fund a political party just to abuse them?
Or do they have their own reasons which actually make sense?
First of all – people who have money generally like to keep it and the goodies that go with wealth.
People who inherit wealth seem to go in two different ways – they spend their inheritance profligately and become fodder for various magazines around the world. Or they tend to be careful with their trust fund, keep it safe and seek to grow it to pass on their heirs. But most people who make their pile, wish, within reason to keep most of it.
So why would they be out there sending money to the Democrats?
This hinges on the difference between “Wealth” and “Income”.
The recent NYT article that attempted to cast President Trump in a bad light (has there been an article in the NYT in the last 4 years that has NOT sought to cast DJT in a bad light? Answers on a postcard please ) made much of him only paying $750 dollars in Federal income tax in one year (they of course, forgot to add in the tax credit he used for a couple of million but fairness was not the look they were going for).
Whoa Nelly! How could a gazillionaire pay so little? This is Criminal!!!! Well, not so fast cowboy or cowgirl. No-one is taxed on how much money they HAVE. They get taxed on their earnings, just like us little folks. And they can use their money to make sure that professionals do their tax returns to minimize their payments. Now if they are seen to support higher rates of taxation rest assured, they are quite happy for those below them in the income pyramid to pay more.
But the impact of such increased taxation is much higher on those lower down the pyramid. Most people are paying as they earn for their future, their family, and their security and well-being. Most of us are paying off our house or paying rent. Fair enough. We have a certain ‘nut’ that we have to make each month to keep our noses above the water line. But there comes a point in the scale where most of the necessities are taken care of, the house is paid for, the earnings provide more than enough. Regular expenses are not a monthly concern. Keep saving and you will have reserves to last quite a while, earn even more and you will be able to buy things that you don’t need.
So if the super earners decide that taxes should be increased what they are saying is that YOU – Joe Schlub – need to pay more of your paycheck in taxes and fees. But that will impact you in other ways – less money for savings for emergencies, less money for kid’s school or college, longer payback on the mortgage. Less expensive holidays. Now add to that support from the well off for things like higher taxes on energy – that increase is paid by everyone. From the poor to the rich. And the impact is heaviest on the poor, not the rich.
People seem to have forgotten that many politicians have become rich from their government positions Many of the top Dems are millionaires – and they are not the only ones.
So why are the Extremely wealthy underwriting all this? Why do rich wealthy celebs send money to bail out street thugs who get arrested for criminal acts under the guise of “protest”? Why do they push for increased taxation and increased regulation (that results in extra taxation paid by the poor)?
They wish to avoid taxes on wealth. Socialism is all about seizing the wealth of the rich for redistribution to everyone. Not the “income” – the “wealth”. Imagine what the tax bill would be for Michael Bloomberg if he had to pay a certain percentage of the worth of all his owned properties, businesses, bank accounts every year? Or any billionaire.
What makes the Dems hold off? Well the leadership are millionaires and certainly do not wish to have their own smaller applecart upset, also, threaten to do it and billionaires will asset strip the USA so fast and transfer the wealth to Abu Dhabi, Switzerland and other, saner places. And the tax base of the USA would crumble. Remember this other fact – the top 10% of EARNERS pay 70 % of the income tax paid in the USA.
The Billionaires seem to have realized that paying a little more in taxes. Putting a little largess about to the upper tiers of the leftist organizations and they can feed the alligator of socialism with the work and bread of the middle class in the hope that they will be eaten last. They get away with it because if you scratch a socialist you find a greedy little person underneath.
Just remember one major thing here – there is nothing, in law, preventing any billionaire (or millionaire for that matter) from liquidating all his or her assets, turning them into cash, using some of the cash as a trust fund to live on for the rest of his or her days in total security taking just one property as a family home, and then giving the remainder to the government. It is totally legal. How many have done it?
Instead Billionaire Gates gave his fortune to a private “charity” that he runs, and which does what he says. Did not have much faith in the ability of the Government to use his money wisely. Though Bill does have absolute faith in them to use my and your money wisely.
The Grating of the Awokening
Much has been made in the past few days of the “Great Awokening” (h/t The Federalist). The almost lemming like urgency with which the professional sports associations are hurling themselves over the cliff in their pursuit of appearing to care.
The problem they keep running into is that the NFL, NBA, MLB and perhaps even the lesser lights of NASCAR and MLS actually do not care about their fans and certainly do not understand them. At all.
Let me bring forth an example – I picked two of the NFL “Good guys” for this example. Two men, great players in the league, very successful, beloved by fans and men who have given tremendous support to the community while having great careers. I picked Warrick Dunn and JJ Watt. Well JJ Watt kind of picked himself as my example because it is his statement at the Chiefs – Texans game that prompted me to write this little blog post.
Both Mr Dunn and Mr Watt are successful professional athletes, Both of them are know for their supportive work for the community. Warrick Dunn for his initiative to get single parent families into their own houses and JJ for his work rising funds to help the City of Houston after the devastating hurricane Harvey and floods.
Last Thursday the Texans and the Chiefs organizations decided that they were going to have various demonstrations of “support” for better Racial conditions in the USA, more awareness of others, all in support of quieting the current situation where there are riots in Democrat run cities where activists threaten ever increasing mayhem.
Into this tempest in a teacup the NFL (and NBA and MLB) decided that they should be telling their fans how they, the organizations, felt about it all. So they decided that they would have demonstrations of their support for such divergent activities a Black Lives Matter, Police Funding, Defunding and other such stuff. They decided that these demonstrations, the names on helmets words in the end zone would be added to let the fans know, what they should think as well.
So when the two teams of players at the game in KC went through their show unity, when they had stood or knelt at various parts of the intros, there was some surprise that the fans at the game were booing. It didn’t appear to the Management that they understood that their fans had come to see professional Football. They had not paid for tickets for some sort of revival tent meeting.
JJ Watt made the following observation to the Press:
“The moment of unity I personally thought was good,” the star defensive end told reporters after the game. “I mean the booing during that moment was unfortunate. I don’t fully understand that. There was no flag involved. There was nothing involved other than two teams coming together to show unity.”
Now I think JJ was being mild here. Don’t get me wrong. But what this shows is that he – hero though he is – does not understand the roles of performer and fan. If he and his fellows had wanted to have a moment of unity and shout out – they certainly have enough money to have paid for a minute of commercial time to film them doing it which they could have paid to run, as a commercial during the game. Why not? Or, better yet they could have had their private moment – private.
Not because what they were doing was wrong. It is neither right nor wrong it just is. It is the expressed attitude that the time attention and money of the audience, the fan is something that the players and the owners are free to exploit to make themselves feel better, even at the expense of the actual reason everyone is there.
People support sports teams for a variety of reasons. Most of us support the teams we grew up with, the ones our family supported back in the fun days of our youth. WE find reasons to like our team and the players that play for them – the players make us believe that they care about this team, this location these fans and we like to think that this could be possible. So, for a few hours every week we can all have our own little fairy tale that we are part of and we can enjoy it. We can enjoy it even when our team fights hard and loses, or plays badly and wins.
I admire people who can perform athletic tasks at levels I would not even dare dream of. I love watching good rugby, football, cricket, American Football, Baseball. I have absolutely no desire, at all, to be lectured by those players about real life. I do not care about their opinions or their woes – in much the same way as I do not expect them to care about my opinions or woes. Play the game you contracted to play.
Yes, I agree it seems a small, annoying point that I am making. But I ask you to consider this simple scenario
The world itself is not made a better place by professional sports. There are no great civilizational advances to lay at the feet of the businessmen the coaches or the players. It is a mighty big footprint in a bowl of water. Lift it out and it disappears.
The whole of this edifice is created and balanced on a fantasy – as I described above – the professional players get paid to play and act like they care about the team, the city the fans, and we pay our money to be entertained and to hope that, just maybe, they might actually care.
And that runs just fine.
Until the mask slips and they show, surprisingly, that they really do not care. They do not understand that they are being paid by the attention money and presence of the fan. Without it – they are just people in a sandbox playing a weird game.
And when the fantasy gets punctured – as JJ Watt just did – suddenly what has been raw passion becomes something less, something uncomfortable. Maybe it will continue but decline, but it will change because Cognitive Dissonance demands an accommodation.
Should American Football disappear – and it looks like they are managing themselves into a decline – fans will just find something else to watch. The more reasons and discomfort you put their way – the more they will look for something else. Here’s a thought for every posturing athlete – from a fan.
I cannot, truly, pass on my disgust and irritation at being lectured by people who have been blessed with physical gifts that have enabled them to indulge a privileged lifestyle and to be handsomely recompensed for doing so – because of people like me paying for it. If you wish to be paid to lecture me you are going to have be a damned sight more intelligent than the crap you are doing in public makes you appear to be and much more eloquent and reasoned in your presentations.