Well, it seems that the Royal Biscuit is only an ordinary biscuit from tomorrow. He and his tame Yank have left Canada and flown – by private jet of course – to Los Angeles where they will be closer to their Hollywood friends.
As soon as they arrived in America, Donald Trump announced that the American government would not be responsible for the cost of their security and I can’t blame him for that.
After all, the Markle snubbed Mr Trump when he came to the UK for a state visit – and a snub it was, whatever was said about her being excused royal duties as she was on maternity leave.
Although the Biscuit did deign to meet Trump, he appeared lukewarm about it. He missed a state dinner at Buckingham Palace for the president and earlier the same day, during a visit to the Royal Picture Gallery, he noticeably hung back from being photographed with the president, chatting instead with his daughter Ivanka.
At the time, Trump brushed aside their differences – although he made clear he knew all too well that the duchess had attacked him. “She was nasty to me,” he said in an interview, “and that’s OK for her to be nasty, it’s not good for me to be nasty to her and I wasn’t.
‘She’s doing a good job, I hope she enjoys her life… I think she’s very nice.” It sounded like a generous, high-minded response which anyone who knew anything about Trump didn’t believe for a second was sincere.
But I must admit, I feel a bit sorry for Donald Trump. He is an oaf with the bombast and arrogance of a street thug but he does seem to get things done. He was legally elected by people who were fed up with the venality and underhand dealings of the Clintons and their democrats. Yet for all the good he has done – and he has – Trump is consistently under vitriolic attack, not only from the Democrats, but also from the American – and to an extent the British – media.
In fact, the situation was summed up in a joke sent to me yesterday. It is not terribly funny but seemed pretty apt.
‘President Trump invited Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth, for lunch on his mega yacht one day. She accepted and during lunch, a gust of wind blew her Maj’s beautiful hat into the water.
The hat floated off about fifty feet, then the wind died down and it just floated in place. The crew and all the queen’s entourage were scrambling to launch a boat to get it, when Trump waved them off, saying “Never mind, boys, I’ll get it.”
Then Donald climbed over the side of the yacht, walked on the water to the hat, picked it up, walked back on the water, climbed onto the yacht, and handed queen Elizabeth her hat.
Everyone on the yacht was speechless.
No one knew what to say, not even the queen.
But that afternoon, the BBC, Sky News, NBC, CBS, ABC, MSNBC, CNN all knew how to cover the story. Their banner headlines read:
“TRUMP CAN’T SWIM”
As my great friend Mfanasibili (Two Boy) Nkosi would put it, ‘Nuff said.’
There can be little doubt that the current coronabug crisis started in China and nobody who reads these pages can have any doubt of my feelings on that country. Yet now China has been proclaiming its own generosity in helping the rest of the world deal with what President Trump with undeniable accuracy if not much tact calls ‘the Wuhan virus.’
Beijing has made much of the supplies of masks and testing equipment which its manufacturers have been delivering at pace and at a reasonable price to countries such as Spain and the Netherlands. What Beijing does not tell us is that when the virus took hold of Wuhan, Chinese companies were ordered to buy up vast quantities of thermometers, surgical masks, hand sanitisers and antibacterial wipes from countries such as Turkey, Canada and Australia.
Somehow I feel that China has got the better of this exchange.
The Spanish newspaper El Pais has reported that the virus-testing equipment arriving from China had been shown in Spanish laboratories to have an accuracy rate of thirty per cent rather than the eighty per cent advertised. The paper quoted a Spanish doctor as saying that such a failure rate meant the tests were useless.
Similarly, a newspaper in the Netherlands has revealed that a batch of six hundred thousand face masks, delivered to its health service from China, was unusable: ‘They have membranes that do not function properly, so do not block particles of the virus,’ a spokesman was quoted as saying.
Of course this means that the masks are not only useless but downright dangerous. A health worker would think that they were being protected when the pathway to their lungs was actually being exposed to the virus.
So how I wonder will this affect Bunter Johnson’s government decision to award the contract to deliver the next generation of smartphone technology, 5G, to the Chinese company Huawei.
Leaving aside the argument forcibly put forward by the U.S. government that it is folly to allow a company intimately connected with a Communist dictatorship into the heart of our data-based national infrastructure, is Huawei actually capable of delivering equipment of the necessary reliability?
I doubt that anything will be cancelled now, although the pressure on Bunter J from Conservative MPs, still adamantly opposed to the Huawei deal will mount – and it is probably to mollify them that Downing Street has been talking about ‘doing less trade with China in future.’
I will believe that when I see it! It is already too late as far as recent steel and nuclear deals are concerned. And Bunter remains firmly committed to the speedy rolling-out of super fast broadband – which only Huawei can deliver in the time frame he wants.
In other words, the Government’s apparently outraged comments to journalists that everything about our trading relationship with China is now to be reconsidered are little more than empty rhetoric.
Let’s face it, if this is what the Government really intends to do, it’s pretty stupid to allow such threats to leak out before it is ready to take action.
Once again, I fear that we will be kow towing to the Chinese and that makes me cross.