the brilliantly leaping gazelle

My Election Notes 2019: E-Day – 3 (pt.3)

It must be that time again, that time when the closer election day gets, so the scare stories about Labours tax plans ramp up a gear, so it was with predictable inevitably that Daily Mail’ reports today that,

Billionaire Phones4U founder John Caudwell warns that ‘every wealthy person in the UK’ would LEAVE if Labour wins general election as he savages John McDonnell’s ‘frightening’ tax hikes

Would that be the same ‘Daily Mail’ owned by the billionaire Viscount Rothermere, who for tax reasons is a ‘nom dom’, essentially a device used to pay less tax?

It would!

My Election Notes 2019: E-Day -3 (pt.2)

As the regular reader of this blog will know only too well, my view of humanity’s extinction from this planet as both welcome and inevitable to say the least. I fail to see how any rational person can view the state of the planet – and it is in a fucking state – with anything other than a feeling of profound regret. Regret that when effective action to reverse man made climate change could’ve been taken, it wasn’t and now it’s too late.

No matter how one changes their diet, their method of transport or stops using single use plastic containers, one is still contributing to the problem by simply being alive. The single most effective act anyone could take – or not take – is to stop having babies, because the less babies there are, the less consumer’s they’ll grow up to be. Perhaps I’m missing something here, but it seems quite simple; less children now means less people tomorrow. Yet no political party is advocating that advocating for that, in fact quite the opposite if this story in yesterdays ‘Daily Mail’ is to be believed,

Boris’s Brexit baby boom! Prime Minister claims ‘romance will bloom across the whole nation’ once it leaves the EU but refuses to say whether he and Carrie Symonds will be among the prophesied new parents

I know we’re fucked  but this is simply taking the piss! But to be all grown up and serious this, to me at least, reveals the inherent contradiction of capitalism that dooms humanity. Namely, that the money to try and solve climate change comes from consumers consuming things that they need to pay tax on, and to earn the money needed to buy those things, they need to work, and by working they’re creating the very problem of consumerism. Even the Greens are promoting this fiction of a sustainable economy, that by a combination of environmental alchemy and nationalised positive thinking, the inevitable can somehow be avoided.

To me its the same as a parent who says to their child who is dying in a hospital bed, “Don’t cry now, there’s nothing to worry about, you’ll be running about in no time. It’s amazing what the doctors can do nowadays”.  Bullshit, no matter how noble the motives behind it, is still bullshit. And as I’ll be dead soonish – but not too soon I hope – I won’t have to witness the anarchy that will ensue when societal norms break down and we become savages again. Or, as my partner says, “I hope I die before the meat runs out”. I think we all know how she feels.

My Election Notes 2019: E-Day – 3

I can’t be the only person to have thought that Boris’s Johnson’s often repeated campaign slogan to ‘Unleash the potential’ sounds worryingly like the title of a really dodgy porn film, can I?

Mind you, their last election slogan wasn’t any better ‘Strong and stable’ makes me think of a porn film set in a farmyard.

Mind you, I am brain damaged, so…

My Election Notes 2019: E-Day – 4 (pt.3)

Love my brother as I do, one thing that really – and I mean really – annoys me about him is his belief that there is no such thing as a right wing or left wing press in this country. “I don’t know what you even mean by that,’ he will say, despite me citing evidence to support this. He could, of course, just be winding me up, knowing that the more he denies it, the more frustrated and irritated I’ll become.

As I repeatedly have pointed out to him we live in a country where just three companies dominate 83% of the newspaper market in the UK. Here is the report that says this. But it shouldn’t surprise you, as hopefully the reader of this blog might not know the specifics, but will be aware of the more general point and see it as fundamental to our democracy. The specifics are here. Because such a concentration of ownership by rich billionaires, who have only become billionaires in the first place by having a transactional approach to democracy, morals and ethics, are hardly not going to interfere in their newspapers editorial content. And they are certainly not going to allow their newspapers to run stories about a politician who if elected PM would implement policies detrimental to their business and financial interests.

Which is why the press give Jeremy Corbinned such a hard time while conversely acting as cheerleaders for Boris’s Johnson. He doesn’t pose a threat to them, because a proper socialist government would raise corporation tax, close tax loopholes and aggressively pursue tax owed. And hopefully name and shame the obscenely wealthy tax avoiders in the same way their newspapers name and shame those poor sods who do exactly the same thing, but are on the other end of the social spectrum.

Oops, silly me, there I was forgetting ‘there’s no such thing as society’, because we can trust everything Margaret Thatcher said can’t we?


My Election Notes 2019: E -Day – 4 (pt. 2)

My heart sank just now when I saw this headline in The Guardian,

Jewish Labour Movement no longer backs own party

Members ‘down tools’ in election campaign over party’s failure to quell antisemitism

and I’d been in such a good mood too, having just got up and feeling virtuous because I’d ordered things on my Christmas wish list from Amazon. Well not that virtuous as they don’t pay their tax, but you get the point. Anyway,

Labour party leader Jeremy Corbyn on the campaign trail in Carmarthen on Saturday. The Jewish Labour group says he is ‘not fit’ to be prime minister. 

Well that helps. That won’t be dominating the news agenda at all,that won’t let the Tories off the hook for all manner of ills. My list of them possibly differs from yours.

The Jewish Labour Movement has “downed tools” in the election campaign and declined to back the party it has supported for almost a century, because of Jeremy Corbyn’s refusal to stamp out antisemitism, the organisation’s chairman says.

With days to go before Thursday’s general election, Mike Katz, JLM’s chairman, says its members concluded “a while ago that Jeremy Corbyn is not fit to be prime minister” because his party was “failing its Jewish members and tolerating antisemitism”. Writing for the Observer, Katz adds: “The Jewish Labour Movement – a founding affiliate of the party, nearly a century ago – has for the first time effectively downed tools for the election, campaigning only for exceptional candidates who have been the best of allies to us in our fight against the party’s anti- Jewish racism.”

I mean they are aware, are they not, that there are bigger evils roaming this country, one’s that affect everyone regardless of religion? Wouldn’t they be wiser to focus instead on the radical programme of social justice that a Corbinned government will usher in and its transformative benefits for this country instead? And if they still felt that they could not support Corbinned could they not have have done so quietly? Instead of making an announcement timed, as far as I can see, to do as much harm to Labour so close to polling day, to give the right wing press yet more ammunition for anti-Corbin stories, but most of all, possibly help usher in a Tory government? In what universe is that a good thing?

My Election Notes 2019: E-Day – 4

One of the things that has always amazed me is how is it that Boris’s Johnson has managed to convince vast swathes of ordinary working people that he is understanding of their…whatever it is they delude themselves he understanding of. Donald Trump managed the same trick on his path to the US presidency but I don’t care about that right now. If ordinary working Americans are so stupid as to believe that a billionaire sex pest speaks for them, well good luck with that, is all I can say.  They elected him, he’s their problem. We’ve our own.

With little more than an appearance on a panel show, an impressive array of verbal ticks, a disheveled appearance and a ‘colourful’ private life, he has blustered his way to where he is now. Which is exactly where I don’t want him – or indeed any Tory politician – ever to be.

At his campaign launch to be Tory party leader earlier this year, he brushed off questions about his language and that of people finding his language offensive as being him nothing more than plain speaking. If that is the case, I’m sure he won’t mind me, in the same spirit of plain speaking, describing him as a political chameleon of the highest order, a self-serving elitist who pretends to be populist to better serve his own interests. A opportunist chancer who plays fast and loose with peoples future’s, a snake oil salesman who looks out only for number one but wants us to put him in number ten,

One who has throughout this election campaign avoided detailed scrutiny, meeting the public and generally shying away from anything that isn’t carefully stage managed by Conservative Central Office. One who could be our PM on Friday, and that sound you’ll hear if he is will be hoofs as the four horsemen of the apocalypse gallop all over this country. One who promotes the fallacy that a Tory majority government will somehow ‘Get Brexit Done’. As I’ve noted before, the only thing that’ll be done is us.


My Election Notes 2019: E-Day – 5

John Minor, in calling for voters to support former Tories who’ve lost the Tory whip and are therefore standing as independents proves three things. The first is that he has conveniently forgotten his own sorry role in creating Brexit. Two, he therefore thinks that he has some vestige of credibility with the public left whereas in fact he has as much credibility as a homeopath. And third, that he is a Grade A….well you can work that one out that for yourselves.

The reason why we are having this election in the fist place isn’t because Boris’s Johnson felt that parliament was preventing him getting his Brexit deal through parliament, leaving him with no choice, as he tells it, but to call this election. Neither nor is the fault of Teresa May, because say what you will about her, she nevertheless did what she thought best with what she had, even though her deal with the DUP after the 2017 election was borne out of desperate political necessity.

That she called the election, when there was no actual reason to do, other than a desire that being returned with an increased majority as the polls predicted, was a gamble that would help her overcome the parliamentary opposition to a Brexit deal. Remember when all parliament could agree on was what it couldn’t agree on? But then she was only Prime Minister in the first place because David Cameron resigned as Prime Minister the day after that fateful day in June 2016.

You get my point. It’s all about consequences and ultimately, the blame for all of this properly rests with John Minor. Back in the heady days of 1992 he was a Conservative Prime Minister at odds with the far right Euro skeptic wing of the Conservative Party. A European Treaty had been agreed at Maastricht that would greatly enlarge the powers of the European Union from what had previously been an economic union into a social and political one as well. Had Minor decided to put this to the British people in the form of a referendum then the leave vote of 2016 might not have happened.

But he didn’t and now we’re paying the price for his political expediency and what was then an irrelevance to most people became over time a source of increasing frustration and for some anger. Not being offered a choice. Being told. Being ignored. So to an extent I feel sorry for Boris’s Johnson, because he’s only been playing the hand he’d been given and who ultimately gave him that hand? The same John Minor who was recently a supporter of an action brought by Gina Miller to argue at the high court that Boris’s Johnson’s plan to suspend parliament was unlawful. So now he thought that the democracy was under threat, now he thought the people -through their democratically elected representatives should be heard, now he was there with the people, standing shoulder to shoulder with them against an overweening executive? Yes, the very same!

My Election Notes 2019: E-Day – 6 (pt.2)

It was an odd day, yesterday, with one of the oddest things being the right wing press’s fury over Jeremy Corbinned plan not to watch the queens speech on Christmas Day but possibly to visit a homeless shelter instead. In what universe is this a bad thing? My recollection of the bible may be a little hazy – I’ve got brain damage after all – but I don’t ever recall it mentioning Jesus partying with the rich and glamorous of Roman society. Nor I recollect it saying he sought out their company to share his teachings with them. Or do any of his party tricks for them.

So quite why any politician seeking election to the highest office in the land should be lambasted for not choosing to watch an unelected benefit scrounger telling us that she too has had a difficult year is utterly beyond me. She has palaces, castles and country estates – not inner-city, crime ridden and austerity ravaged estates either. One’s where one goes shooting, not try to avoid being shot or stabbed up.

t’s not like she’s going to throw open the doors to the hundreds of unused rooms in her various gaffs, is she? Or in her speech say something like ‘ I feel racked with guilt about having so much when so many of you have so little. It isn’t fair that you the taxpayer should keep me and my family warm and fed this Christmas! So to any one whose in a hostel this Christmas, let me give you a Christmas present, my doors of my houses are open to you, so come on in, you own them, after all’ No, her and her parasitic family of freeloaders will scrounge off us once again.

Isn’t Corbinned trying to embody of everything the bible claims Jesus was, said and did? Indeed, there is one interpretation of the bible that see’s Jesus as a socialist. This episode neatly encapsulates why Corbinned is fit for the top job, because whilst some of Labours policies may not be to everyone’s taste, they come from a good place and speak volumes about the direction he wants to lead Britain in and the difference between him and Boris’s Johnson.

My Election Notes 2019: E-Day – 6

It struck me only this morning that opinion polls are a bit like ready meals.

Last Friday, I was meant to attend an event at the London School Of Economics concerning a new methodology for the measuring of opinions that make opinion polls, so they can appear more trustworthy and indicative of the opinions they present. Because as we all know, the standing of opinion polls has been low since their disastrous misreading of the 2015 election, one that was only eclipsed by the failure to call the 2016 referendum. Mind you, that was only eclipsed by their utter failure to in any way predict clearly the 2017 election. So, improvements were urgently needed, as every newspaper and media outlet said in 2015, again in 2016, and er, in 2017. But be be that as it may, despite this the same newspapers and media outlets still need stories so are still reporting the findings of opinion polls as if none of this ever happened. Its almost as if newspapers only commission and publish polls whose findings they know either their proprietor or readers will agree with. Arrant nonsense I know!

Even though conducting interviews face to face is better than virtually every other method, as it allows for follow-ups and clarification, it is also much more expensive. Much, much more. That’s why online polls published by polling companies that offer incentives are not worth the paper they’re not printed on. I wrote a blog about them here and them helping to cause the ‘bandwagon effect’, namely, because how everyone likes to back a winner, so the polls help create the very thing they purport to show.

In much the same way people proclaimed themselves outraged by the ‘horse-meat’ scandal few years back when it turned out that one wasn’t able to buy a £3 lasagna ready meal and for it not contain the best cuts of meat. Inexplicably they imagined that they imagined could buy the quality for next to no money and this lack of credulity turned to anger when the whole sorry fiasco was revealed. The consumer wanted everything but the blame. No matter that horse meat is a far healthier meat to eat. Apparently what mattered that the people had been misled. It was the principle of the thing! This principle didn’t however last until the following Christmas, which had the temerity to be only a month or so later. Now their outrage was all forgotten.They wanted tables laden with food, they wanted to stuff themselves silly.  They wanted cheap food, 3 for 2 and ‘buy one get one free’ offers, because they really did think there was such a thing as a free meal.

That’s why opinion polls are much like ready meals, people remember what they want to remember!