Pride and ‘Protest.’

So Cecil John Rhodes’ statue managed to survive the night but for how much longer? Protesters blocked the streets of Oxford yesterday demanding that the statue be taken down but so far the authorities have not caved in.

I certainly hope they do not. Yes, Rhodes was an Imperialist but he was a man of the times, as were the other ‘targets’ that the Black Lives Matter rioters have picked out to have their statues removed from the towns and cities of Britain. These men were proud of being British.

The nearest town to me is Tavistock, a peaceful market community that is dominated by a statue of its best known son, Sir Francis Drake. Drake has long been considered a hero in this part of the world, but he too was associated with the slave trade, as were most of his famous contempories, so according to the rioters – and I really can’t bring myself to call them protesters – all memorials to them should be removed.

Yes, Rhodes was an Imperialist but if he was a racist, it was according to the customs of the time. He went alone into the Matopos hills to parley with the Matabele Chiefs and halt a burgeoning war and when he died, the funeral procession leading up into those same Matopos was lined with many thousands of grieving Matabele. Would they have mourned his passing if he was indeed a racist?

And believe it or not, the current protests in Oxford are being led and directed by a former Rhodes scholar. Ndjodi Ndeunyema, a law student whose education has been partially funded by a trust set up by Rhodes told the world last night that ‘The statue remaining is an affront on the university’s support for movements such as Black Lives Matter. Rhodes is not worthy of veneration or glorification because of the racism and subjugation he represents.’

Rubbish Sir! If you do go on to succeed in your legal career, I wonder will you ever think about who funded your learning. Somehow I doubt it and I don’t suppose it occurs to you that the revered – and I have never been sure why – Nelson Mandela had no hesitation in having his name associated with that of Rhodes in the Mandela/Rhodes Trust for further scholarships.

What these rioters cannot seem to grasp is that racism in one form or another has always been part of Society and their increasingly violent and vociferous protests in some sort of twisted support for George Floyd is far more likely to inflame racism than ease it. Floyd is dead and the policemen who killed him will be tried and if found guilty, sentenced to imprisonment. Only a few years ago in the same city of Minneapolis, an Australian lady called Justine Damond was shot dead in her pyjamas by a police officer called Mahomed Noor. Nobody rioted over that. Noor was duly tried and went to jail but the incident was quickly forgotten. Damond was an honest lady trying to help the local community so I suppose her death wasn’t news. Plus of course, she was white!

I am sorry, but the sheer hypocrisy of it all makes me angry.

Of all the images – and there were thousands – displayed in the British Press about the ‘demonstrations’ last weekend, the one that sickened me most was a photograph of uniformed police officers running away from angry rioters. Where was their pride in their uniform damnit? When you join the police, you know that you will be required to put your life on the line from time to time, but you do it because you are proud of your uniform. Most coppers have shown raw courage at various points in their career and regarded it as part of ‘The Job.’ Some have lost their lives, others have had their bravery recognised with medals and citations but I have never, ever witnessed a bunch of policemen fleeing from yelling yobbery like that lot.

My own pride at having been a cop both here and in my home country took a serious knock I’m afraid.

And yet, playing politics seems far more important than proper policing in this crazy modern era. The tone was set for this latest copppering fiasco by an official statement most folk will have missed.

It was issued last Thursday by all Britain’s Chief Constables, the chair of the National Police Chiefs’ Council, the chief executive of the College of Policing and the President of the Police Superintendents’ Association. The statement read:

‘We stand alongside all those across the globe who are appalled and horrified by the way George Floyd lost his life. Justice and accountability should follow.

‘Officers are trained to use force proportionately, lawfully and only when absolutely necessary. We strive to continuously learn and improve. We will tackle bias, racism or discrimination wherever we find it . . .’

What on earth was that about? Why should the most senior coppers in Britain feel it necessary to pass comment on an incident which happened on another continent? What the hell has it got to do with them? I can’t remember a similar statement condemning police brutality in Russia, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, or anywhere else for that matter. Where is the official British police reaction to Chinese repression in Hong Kong or the ongoing torrent of police brutality taking place in South Africa, Zimbabwe and a host of other African countries?

So why now?

A silly question I suppose. These Tinpot Twonks never miss an opportunity to burnish their ‘anti-racist’ credentials so they thought they’d get their pathetic virtue-signalling in first. The ‘woke’ Left were always going to hijack the death of George Floyd for their own purposes, even though most of them couldn’t point to Minnesota on a ruddy map.

I am sure that many of those who attended the weekend protests were sincere, but there is a time and place for everything, and this wasn’t it. We are currently in the middle of the greatest civil emergency since the second World War. As part of the efforts to combat the Coronabug, gatherings of more than six people have been banned. We can argue about the wisdom of that decision – and many of the Government’s other restrictions – but most people have happy to comply and many of those who have not done so have been prosecuted and fined.

Black Lives Matter shattered that sense of national unity. Thousands flooded into London, Cardiff, Bristol, Manchester, Glasgow and Edinburgh in open defiance of social distancing rules.

We are told that members of black, Asian and ethnic minorities face a greater risk of dying from the coronabug, yet here were black (and white) citizens rubbing shoulders with complete strangers, regardless of the risk of transmission. Were they not worried that they could take the virus that has killed so many people back to their own families and communities? Why were they allowed to flout the rules so blatantly in any case?

Yet despite the fact that the demonstrators were breaking the law, they were cheered on by the usual turnips on the Left. Kneeling among the crowd, like an embarrassing disco-dancing uncle at a gay wedding, was the ridiculous Corbynite MP, Barry Gardiner – last seen leading the lynch mob against Dominic Cummings, the PM’s adviser who drove his family to Durham for the duration.

For a week, the self-righteous Left railed against Desperate Dom and all those Brexit-voting plebs who took their families to the seaside during the hot spell. But none of them has uttered a word of criticism about the people, whether sincere or not, breaking the lockdown in their thousands to join Black Lives Matter.

The police have threatened to fine anyone caught entertaining more than six people in their back garden so why did they allow the ‘protests’ to go ahead? If these were football fans, protesting about not being let back into grounds when the Premier League resumes, the Yard would have sent in the armed response units. If you or I decided to turn up at Downing Street, let off flares and throw a bicycle at a police horse, our feet wouldn’t touch the ground and quite rightly so. But if you’ve got a ‘cause’ – be it anti-racism, or climate change – the modern Plod are happy to let you get on with it.

We’ve been here before, most recently with Extinction Rebellion being allowed to bring London to a standstill for a week. Remember the skateboarding constable and the pink yacht in Oxford Circus?  Was anyone surprised that Bristol police stood back and watched a gang of thugs demolish Edward Colston’s statue? This is the force – sorry ‘service’ – which gave that preposterous Thunberg adolescent a police escort in an electric car to address thousands of schoolchildren playing truant, just as we were becoming aware of the Coronabug threat.

Meanwhile, back in Whitehall, it was only a matter of time before ‘peaceful protest’ turned into violent anarchy – just as it did before during the student fees protests, the anti-globalisation protests, the anti-capitalist protests and virtually every other occasion when London mobs were allowed to do as they wanted.

Churchill’s statue defaced, the Cenotaph violated, frontline coppers attacked and so on and so forth. Some things just don’t change.

Only this time the craven posturing of Scotland Yard’s self-serving, careerist top brass – in thrall to all things diverse and fashionable – ended up with forty nine coppers injured and a young woman officer hospitalised with cracked ribs, a broken collarbone and a collapsed lung.

The British Police used to be regarded as the finest police force in the world but that is a title it has long since forfeited.

An Anarchic Generation

When I was a barefooted bush boy growing up in the wilds of Central Africa, my playmates were the local African picannins (not a politically correct term nowadays) and if I had to use a ‘white’ language, I preferred Afrikaans to English. My Father on the other hand was very proud of his British ancestry even though many years after his death, we never really figured out who he was.

He used to make me listen to the BBC World Service and take note as to how words were pronounced and consonants were distinct. How he would have quailed inside at BBC pronunciation and accents nowadays!

Yet my parents were of the generation that went through the second world war – he was an army Major – and it was a generation that provided a strict but fair upbringing to their children. Yet I look on the Black Lives Matter rioters – and they can’t really be called demonstrators – running amok in the so-called civilised world today and quite apart from being pleased for his sake that my Father is not around to see it, I can only wonder where the parents of the world went wrong.

I tried to raise my own offspring in the manner that I was brought up but somewhere along the line, the wheels seemed to come off family values – indeed, most values held dear by preceding generations.

Governments today no longer follow the Constitution they represent nor do they care about the people who put them into power.

Most governments have in their collective greed, raised the cost of living so high that both parents are forced to work, leaving their children rudderless and without parental guidance. They have taken God and Christianity out of schools for fear of offending different religions. Parents throughout the western world are forbidden from disciplining their children and now most of those children are out of control. Liberal modern authorities have taken an entire generation and turned them into selfish, entitled brats who have no respect for people, property or authority.

Those same governments – and I am really talking about Britain and America here – deem people with terminal illnesses and some with only a few months to live, fit for work if they pass various tests, rather than pay them to live through their last few days. They allow war veterans on whom they relied for their own survival to go homeless and hungry but, give out millions to illegal aliens, and foreign aid to other corrupt governments. They ‘save’ drug addicts time and time again but make the elderly pay for their care if they worked and strived to save for their children’s future. They bend over backwards to be politically correct, too scared to say enough is enough, in case they offend someone. They put the retirement age up so people must work until they drop. They lavish care on imprisoned criminals and give them everything they claim to need – even to the extent of sex change surgery, yet they let old folk who have led dignified lives lose their savings by paying for care in expensive nursing homes.

It is surely time that these political nonentities that make the rules for western societies be made to face up to their responsibilities. It is not the action of a white American police officer kneeling on the neck of a black criminal that has caused the current outbreak of rioting, it is the fact that the western world has abdicated its responsibilities for raising a generation of young people to respect the elderly and the rights of others. Now we are faced with ever escalating mayhem and I am reminded of the nineteen eighties – before most of these rioters were born – when successive governments across Europe and the Middle East collapsed or were swept away under people pressure – so much more justified than the ‘pressure’ felt by the Black Lives Matter people.

Whether white or black, do these rioters – I won’t dignify them by calling them demonstrators – really think they know anything about racism or equality for that matter? They should be thankful because they have food on the table, clothes to wear and a house to live in. If they don’t have a job for whatever reason, the state will pay them to live.

Forget about the different colours of skin. To me, the problem lies far more in where people happen to be born. BLM loudly proclaim their shock and horror at a corrupt white cop who killed one black man? Millions die every year in Africa so that these rioters can live a first world life. Do they know or care about children in the Congo that are slaves mining the minerals so they can have a smartphone and invite their friends to riot with them? Of course they don’t.  They howl about Edward Colston who was a slave trader three hundred years ago but whose philanthropy did wonders for Bristol, the city where he was born. Do they think about the present day slave markets of Libya, Sudan and other parts of Africa? Or the kids wasting away their lives in scrabbling for diamonds so they can show off their precious engagement rings?

Do they care that huge companies like Nestle – and they are not the only ones – hire mercenaries in Africa to guard water supplies so that the first world can feed its proliferating babies while local children die of thirst. Of course they don’t. They want to howl their grievances and smash as much white owned property as they can. The statue of Winston Churchill in London was defaced this weekend while a moronic black woman tried to set the Union Jack on top of the Cenotaph alight. For all his faults, Churchill is the main reason these twonks are alive to cause their mayhem and without the sacrifices made by those honoured at the Cenotaph, none of these oxygen thieves would even be alive.

Do they think about the genocide taking place of white farmers in South Africa where thousands of whites were and still are tortured, raped and murdered?  Of course they don’t. Black murdering white does not seem to count as racist. I listen to healthy looking black youngsters being interviewed by the BBC news teams and they whine about misery, oppression, poverty and inequality but in reality, they have no idea about any of these things.

None of them have any experience of hunger – oh I know Macdonalds and KFC were forced to close down by a cruel and vindictive white government – but have they ever had to survive on the occasional spoonful of boiled maize? Have they ever needed to drink foul, disease-ridden water because there is no alternative? Have they ever been reduced to crawling through piles of rubbish in the hope of finding something vaguely edible? Of course they haven’t, but they whine about how downtrodden they are.

The rioters complain about being stopped and searched purely because of their skin colour. I was arrested twice in Tanzania, merely for being white and on another occasion, I was beaten up by hungover black soldiery just because they felt like it. I did not complain about racism and I even parted from both loads of arresting coppers with smiles and handshakes. Wherever I went on my long cycle ride through Africa (see my book Two Wheels and a Tokoloshe) black people helped and went out of their way to look after me.

Yet now I look on with horror and disgust at the raw hatred being shown on the streets of major cities in the Western World and I wonder just how it came to this. I do not believe it is over the death of one man. I believe there is a deep-seated sense of entitlement among the young people of the so-called civilised world and they have lost touch with the realities of life. They have been cosseted, looked after and allowed to have their way for at least two generations and the west has spawned an outbreak of demonic monsters.

I am just so thankful that my proudly nationalistic Father is not around to see it.

The Sad State of Humanity

Throughout my long life, I have been told off for my outlook on people in general but sometimes I am driven very close to despair by my fellow human beings.

When Bunter Johnson and his merry men eased lockdown restrictions a couple of weeks ago, it was over a sunny weekend so people flocked to the countryside and beaches. I certainly did not begrudge them enjoyment of their ‘freedom’ but why on earth didn’t they take their rubbish home with them. Resort towns and villages were left to cope with piles of discarded wrappers, uneaten food and disposable barbecues. Some even reported human waste left in bottles or just where it fell. And I am sure these people look on themselves as vastly superior to animals.

I consoled myself with the thought that visitors to Dartmoor tend to be the outdoor types who generally care for their surroundings but a few days ago when returning from nearby Yelverton, I drove past a large and usually well used layby to see an old washing machine lying there, obviously abandoned.

Since then I have read about old furniture and other discarded household items also chucked out on that stretch of road.

Now where is the logic in that, I ask myself. Whoever left the stuff for others to clear away would have had to drive out from where they live, presumably under cover of darkness, throw the stuff out and drive home again. Why? Surely it is just as simple to take what they don’t want to the public tip in Tavistock and not risk being prosecuted for fly tipping while spoiling the pristine beauty of the Moor. Or is it that they deliberately set out to spoil lives for other people?

Travis you were quite right. Vultures do indeed serve a far more useful purpose than human beings.

Meanwhile in America, a black female activist, Candace Owens is in trouble for saying that George Floyd was not a martyr but a ‘horrible human being.’

Last Wednesday, Owens appeared on Facebook Live and explained the problem she had with people holding up Floyd as a martyr. 

‘We are unique in that we are the only people that fight and scream and demand support and justice for the people in our community who are up to no good,’ she said of black America. 

She also maintained said that no Jewish person, or Hispanic person, or white person would embrace someone who had done five stints in prison. 

‘George Floyd was not an amazing person,’ she told her viewers and went on, ‘As soon as the video of his death hit the internet, I did just basic searches.’  

‘First and foremost George Floyd, at the time of his arrest, was high on fentanyl and methamphetamine,’ Owens said. She also mentioned a 2007 robbery that Floyd was charged with that involved a pregnant victim and Floyd holding a gun to her stomach. 

‘And this was the biggest instant I had that made me realize this is a horrible human being, that I’m not going to pretend is a good person,’ she told her viewers.  

She said her criticism was in no way defending what the police officer Derek Chauvin did, by kneeing Floyd in the neck, until he was unresponsive. 

‘But why are we pretending that this criminal should be upheld as a citizen, as a martyr, or black America?’ she asked. 

Since then I have done a bit of digging myself. Floyd had a history of criminal convictions and had served five years in prison for assault and robbery.  The County Medical Examiner’s report has concluded he died of a heart attack not asphyxiation, that he had Fentanyl in his system, had recently used methamphetamine, had coronary artery disease and hypersensitive heart disease.

However, footage showing a white policeman with his knee pressed into Floyd’s neck for nine minutes has caused international outrage and triggered mayhem among black people and white liberals around the world – mayhem that will doubtless escalate over this weekend because it seems that many people like nothing better than a nice big riot..

I couldn’t help asking myself why the world reserves all its public fury for the relatively rare occasions when whites are responsible for the death of blacks. In America approximately seven thousand black people are killed in violent incidents each year and over ninety percent of those murders are committed by blacks. And where was the apoplectic media and ‘Black Lives Matter’ outrage when just under a million Tutsis were having their heads hacked off by machete-wielding Hutus in Rwanda. This colossal crime against humanity closely followed the mass riots in America after the beating of Rodney King by police in Los Angeles in 1992. But America, led by Bill Clinton, the UN with Kofi Annan then responsible for responding to the slaughter, serial rabble rousers, Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton and virtually the entire world stood idly by and did precisely nothing and the international press corps were quiet. Is it somehow acceptable if blacks kill blacks I wonder?

And now the South African government are to register a protest with the Trumpet about the Floyd killing. South Africa of all places – a land of brutality and tragedy among the beauty and abundance; an abundance that is being steadily looted by elite black Africans. They should look at themselves before casting aspersions anywhere else. The murder rate in South Africa is amongst the highest in the world but where are the protesters? Where were the Black Lives Matter people when the Matabele tribesmen were being brutally murdered in their tens of thousands by Robert Mugabe’s Korean trained Fifth Brigade? Were there any knees on the ground for them? Were there any apologies for their murders in supposedly Christian churches all over America and the rest of the world? Were there hell! The world was eerily silent and would be just as silent were the same thing to happen again now. Black lives only seem to matter when they are taken by white people, whether legally or illegally.

Black Americans nowadays like to refer to themselves as African Americans. Well, if they do not feel safe in America, why don’t they move to anywhere in Africa. Would they do that I wonder? Would they settle in South Africa or the ‘Democratic’ Republic of Congo or even oil-wealthy Nigeria? Of course they would not. Their lives might be in real danger in the continent that they claim to have come from.

I was also somewhat sickened to see photographs of British police officers kneeling at the London protests. I presume this was in solidarity with the protestors but can only suggest to these fairies that they look hard at a picture of their unnamed and unarmed fellow officer whose face was slammed against a wall by a ‘peaceful protester.’ Apparently, the protester could not be identified because he was wearing a red hoodie but surely the other coppers should have made extra efforts to throw him in the cells?

A few – a very few of these demonstrators might sincerely believe in the cause they are carrying placards for but I wish they would get it into their pathetic little heads that All Lives Matter, not just black ones.

Let them consider the brutal murders that are continually going on among the farms of South Africa. In the latest incident that took place in Mpumulanga province, three attackers, two of whom were armed forced farm workers into the home of a seventy seven year old farmer and his wife. They beat the farmer and tied him up. After that, they tortured his wife with a blow torch, demanding money. Not content with the pain they were causing they then raped the woman with their pistols before driving off in the farmer’s truck.

In this case, the victims lived but in many others, they don’t and nothing is said either by the South African government or the rest of the world.

Surely their lives matter too or am I just an out of date fuddy duddy who is ashamed to be part of the human race?

Racism, Murder and Prostitution

What is it about twenty first century ‘civilisation’ that makes people think of themselves as so important rather than minute cogs in a very large world?

Take the current furore about racism in America and the huge ‘demonstrations’ held in London and other cities around the world. What are these ‘demonstrators’ trying to prove? Their actions, particularly the violent and illegal ones are hardly likely to change the minds of politicians or for that matter do anything other than make the situation worse than it already is.

I was brought up in Colonial Africa so have some experience of racism, albeit mainly from the controlling point of view. Yet I have spent a goodly portion of my adult life wandering among simple tribesmen and have never experienced any hint of racism or felt in any way superior to the people I wander among. They accept me and I accept them as members of the same species, even though our cultures, degrees of education and ways of life – indeed our views on the outside world – are markedly different.

Now I look on with horrified wonder as supposedly educated people riot for a cause and my heart bleeds for Mankind. Yes, the death of George Floyd was horrific but four policemen have now been charged with murder and depending on the facts that will come out in Court, face lengthy spells in prison. Yet only a few days later in the town of Tulbagh in the Western Cape province of South Africa, a prominent local doctor was murdered by unknown black men. Dr Roelof Botha was on his way home from a pleasant Sunday clay pigeon shooting meet and was a mere four hundred metres from his home when he was set upon and hacked to death.

Dr Botha is merely the latest among many thousands of white people (mainly farmers) to be murdered by black South Africans but like the rest of them, his death will go largely unreported and there certainly won’t be any mass demonstrations in his support. Not only was he a medical man who helped all members of his community, but he was also a devout Christian while Mr Floyd as far as I can tell from reports was a criminal engaged in a criminal act at the time of his arrest and subsequent death.

I watched Prime Minister’s Questions in Parliament yesterday and was immediately struck and somewhat horrified by the inflammatory antics of the pompously pretentious leader of the Scottish Nationalists, Ian Blackford.

‘Let him say it,’ this turnip thundered to the house. ‘Let me hear the Prime minister say that black lives matter.’

Bunter Johnson didn’t but if I could have lost all my proud Scottish heritage at that moment, I would willingly have done so.

Of course all black lives matter, Mr Blackford but so do white lives, brown lives and even lives of green or purple. If the demonstrators would change their slogan to all lives matter, I might have some sympathy but at the moment, they seem more intent of stirring up emotions and that must inevitably inflame and exacerbate the situation.

I didn’t know either Mr Floyd or Doctor Botha but they both died horrific deaths and feelings for them both should be the same.

Meanwhile, the Coronabug pandemic continues to become ever more bizarre and inexplicable. The government here seem to contradict themselves at every turn but in Switzerland – normally a model of sensible governance or so we are led to believe – prostitutes are to be allowed to resume working while judo and ballroom dancing competitions remain banned.

‘Sex workers will be allowed to offer their services again from next month subject to strict hygiene measures,’ Alain Berset, the Swiss interior minister announced.

‘There are certainly personal contacts but a concept of protection seems possible. I am well aware of the bizarre aspect of my answer,’ Mr Berset told a press conference. ‘To tell you the truth, erotic services could have resumed earlier.’

I can’t help wondering at that possible ‘concept of protection.’ Perhaps it is as a result of my sheltered upbringing.

Huh – I wish!

In Defence of Hyenas

I have spent a goodly portion of my life mingling with and studying the wild animals of Africa. In the course of my bush sojourns, one animal in particular has always fascinated me and that is the hyena. He is generally held in contempt by human beings because he is basically a scavenger and gangs up in snarling packs to drive larger animals off their kills.

Yet hyenas – Crocuta Crocuta to the boffins – are a great deal more than the cowardly thieves of human imagination. They live in loving family groups, look after their offspring and their society is entirely matriarchal. They are also ruthlessly efficient hunters in their own right. Even though I once lost a much loved leather hat to a prowling hyena, I have developed a soft spot for Crocuta over the years. He doesn’t smell very nice but probably feels the same way abut human beings.

So what has this to do with the state of the world, you might be asking yourself. Well, my initial thoughts when I watched the mob of yelling, booing and cat-calling journalists and protesters outside Dominic Cummings’ front gate last week was that they reminded me of a pack of slavering hyenas. But that was not fair. There is honour among hyenas, whereas to see those people just made me cringe for the human race.

I do not and have never liked Mr Cummings. As far as I can tell, he is an arrogant little nerd with far too much power in government. When the news of his travels to Durham broke, I felt that the resultant uproar probably served him right, but it was only toward the end of last week that more details emerged.

For a start, Mr and Mrs Cummings feared they might both be confined to hospital with the Coronabug. That would have caused a problem as their four year old is autistic and terrified of strangers. So off they went so that the boy could be looked after by family, should the worst happen and not be sent to some soulless institution, where he would not be able to understand why he had been abandoned to strangers.

The government rules for this lockdown are of course, vague and confusing – just as most of their actions have been so far. Regulation Six tells us that road journeys are to be avoided if the purpose is not ‘reasonable’ or even ‘necessary.’

But in English – which is still almost the national language – neither adjective is scientifically precise.

If one is in a car doing 90mph in a 30mph zone – that is easy to understand and technically provable, but what one person thinks is reasonable, his nosily vindictive neighbour next door may think is totally out of order.

There is nothing so merciless as hypocrisy and at the moment Britain is drowning in it. That howling pack of vindictive folk outside the Cummings residence were more like ugly vultures than Crocuta Crocuta I’m afraid. All they wanted to do is tear a fellow human to shreds.

Yet their collective behaviour was endorsed by the Shadow Foreign Secretary Emily Thornberry, Mr Cummings’ local MP, who bragged that her constituents could be ‘relied on to say it as it is.’

Does that mean she condones apparent ‘lynch mobs’ I wonder? Quite apart from Cummings Junior, there must surely have been other children living in that street. What are they to think about adults and what lessons will they learn from the howling mob?

It is hardly the sort of behaviour expected from someone with the grandiose title ‘composer-in-residence’ with the Royal Opera House but among the ‘demonstrators outside Chez Cummings was twenty nine year old Oliver Leith, who is one of the brightest stars in the world of classical music. Yet this scion of a genteel world delighted in having his picture taken giving the passing Cummings a very vulgar two fingered salutation.

Whatever you think of him, why should protesters be allowed to intimidate Cummings and his family, including his four-year-old child? He has been sworn at and had ‘Scummings’ and other even worse abuse scrawled on walls around his home.

Peaceful protest is one thing, but hurling threats and insults at people outside their homes is despicable. Why isn’t it illegal, too? Yet the self-styled ‘liberal’ Left seem to believe that such thuggery is not only perfectly acceptable, it should be encouraged. I suppose they look upon it as their ‘human right’ to vilify those with whom they don’t agree but this kind of disgusting behaviour wouldn’t be allowed at a factory gate so why is it tolerated in a residential street?

Of course Dominic Cummings is not completely innocent and his own actions also smell badly of hypocrisy. Driving fifty odd miles to ‘test one’s eyesight’ is hardly reasonable, but I hope that were I to have been in his position initially, I too would have put the welfare of my child before yet another loosely worded government regulation.

But if only Cummings himself or his blustering boss could have eaten a bit of humble pie and explained the situation, particularly in that weird ‘press conference’ given in the Downing Street garden. That would surely have taken the wind out of the vitriolic sails of the protestors.

And as we come into summer, so the rioting season begins yet again. A black man is arrested in America, treated somewhat harshly in the course of that arrest and dies – presumably but not yet proven – as a result of injuries sustained during the arrest.

It happens I’m afraid, particularly in America. Their police officers do not need much intelligence or common sense to qualify to become a cop – in this case, it seems that both the police officer and the villain previously worked together as bouncers – and their laws of arrest and detention are a great deal looser than they are in other parts of the world. Arresting anyone is always stressful and while I do not know and don’t really care about the minute details of this case, I have witnessed many a fracas in the course of similar instances when the same thing could have happened.

However, the man who died was black and the police officer white. The latter has been arrested and charged but yet again, there was immediate hysteria throughout America. Riots, burnings, the inevitable looting and at least one other person dead. So of course, the Great and the Good (huh!) of London Town had to have their own march of protest yesterday. Why? A bunch of rabid Londoners are hardly likely to affect conditions in America and I don’t think the Trumpet is going to lose any sleep over Londoners’ worries.

They even held a similar ‘march’ in little New Zealand on the other side of the world!

No, I apologise to the vultures too. They do an excellent job of cleaning up and when compared to human beings, their antics are almost graceful.

I don’t think I like my own species very much. Time I was back in the bush, I fear.

The Dom and Boris Show

With the current furore over Dominic Cummings and his trip ‘up North,’ the spotlight has gone off others who are deliberately bending the rules to their own advantage.

Take the case of Lord Fox for instance. This Liberal Democrat – that says it all really – peer runs a company of which he is the only employee. The company, which I believe is something to do with advertising has closed down for the duration of the Coronacrisis. All well and good but jolly old Foxy has put himself on the government furlough scheme so that up to eighty percent of his ‘wages’ are being paid for by us, the poor old tax paying public. At the same time, he claims his hundred and sixty two pounds per day for attending the House of Lords, even if he only attends via a video link.

Can this be even vaguely ethical?

Then you have the comedian Steve Coogan who used to delight in having his photograph taken with cabbage-grower Corbyn and lives in a four million pound home. He has put the nine members of his production company plus his gardener and housekeeper on furlough too.

And then of course there are the likes of Branson and other multi millionaires who are using government money to finance their various enterprises during the current crisis. How can this be allowed when so many of us are on the bones of our backsides and trying mainly to stay vaguely solvent?

Why can these people not dip into their own pockets for a while instead of sponging off the rest of us? Perhaps Dominic Cummings’ ‘crime’ is not so serious after all. It certainly is not worth the media time that is being spent on it.

I surely can’t be the only one worried about the health – both mental and physical – of our ‘revered leader.’ He has looked frail, befuddled, exhausted and watery-eyed in his recent appearances. Where has the barnstorming Brexit Bunter gone? I don’t know but we certainly are not seeing him at the moment. Instead we have the nappy-changing, NHS-clapping, overweight and obviously flustered Covid Boris. It’s neither a pretty nor a reassuring sight.

In the Commons, Johnson does not just collapse intellectually under Keir Starmer’s interrogations, he reveals, blustering back, the emotional void that accompanies his incompetence. Has anyone ever paid so many magnificent tributes to the British people, their grit and guts, fortitude and sacrifice, while caring so little about them?

Let’s face it, this Government has a large enough majority for the prime minister to lead decisively. Instead he blows about in the winds of public opinion and media pressure, facing first this way and then that, his pronouncements as chaotic as his general appearance.

The daily press briefings are becoming superfluous too, the graphs predictable and the message reduced to an ad man’s jingle. If I am told one more time that we are currently on alert level four but that because we have all been such good children and so damned well-behaved, we will soon move to level three, I shall be inclined to resort to an outburst of profanity. Let’s save the hearty self congratulations till this epidemic is behind us damnit.

Meanwhile, the Government has so thoroughly succeeded in scaring people that many are too afraid to go to work or send their children to school. No wonder. Standing in front of the flag and intoning a daily death rate, ministers have created panic among the impressionable.

Suppose they did that for winter flu or some other disease that hits us regularly? Life would be just one long panic. None of us expect the government to perform miracles so why on earth do they keep on with these ridiculous briefings? This is a new pandemic and some mistakes were made and still will be made, but I think we all expect firm leadership from the prime minister. That is something we are not getting.

At the moment, Bunter is still standing by Dominic Cummings and insisting that the man acted legally and ‘with integrity.’ However, given BJ’s record of consistency, I reckon Mr Cummings should start clearing his desk.

Bunter and The Bug

Sunday morning and our posturing government is in trouble yet again.

I mean, what on earth is one to make of Bunter Johnson, particularly now that his top aide Dominic Cummings stands accused of flagrantly disobeying the rules that he helped make up and then chose to ignore?

Anyone else would surely have been fired on the spot yet Bunter persists in defending the man. Yes, Cummings is probably a vital cog in BJ’s plans for running the government but he is now a huge liability, not only where the opposition and even Tory MPs are concerned or with the left-leaning media but also with the majority of the general public who are inevitably asking why they have to obey the rules, but this man doesn’t.

If Bunter J doesn’t act decisively over this, his own standing with the public – already somewhat rocky – is going to drop alarmingly as more and more people lose faith in him. And let’s face it, seldom has any prime minister fallen from grace as quickly as this man has. The more we learn about the government’s handling of the Coronabug crisis, the more it is revealed to have been bungled from the start. The frenzied attempts to cover all this up rather than put it right are being exposed one by one.

I have marvelled at Bunter J for a very long time and rather dreaded him ever having the top job, mainly because I thought the rest of the world would laugh at Britain for having such an obvious fop at the helm. Yet when he took that job with an overwhelming majority in Parliament, I was prepared to give him time to prove himself. That time is fast running out.

After all, Johnson has the qualifications to be a leader. He is an Old Etonian, a classics scholar (which should have taught him to pay attention to detail) a journalist (later fired for inventing quotes) and a political animal right down to his fancy cotton socks. Yet it is as the last of these that he has proved to have but a tenuous grip on reality and the truth.

Suddenly though, he has a new and very real threat to his pretensions. Facing him across the Commons is Keir Starmer, the new leader of Labour and he is lawyer, lawyer and lawyer to his little cotton socks. Since taking over from that bumbling revolutionary Corbyn, Starmer has been quietly firing the Hard-Left rabble that kept Corbyn in power.

With that necessary task almost done he can divert his attention to the Prime Minister and he is revealing at Question Time that he can take the blustering, rambling PM to bits and leave those bits all over the despatch box. He never raises his voice, waves his arms or shows off to the gallery, but like a cross-examining barrister he simply quotes verbatim, from previous government pronouncements to prove the PM’s protestations that the Government got it right are complete rubbish.

And it is about time someone did because the present shambles cannot go on or we’ll have no country left.

Yet it seems only a few short weeks since Bunter had it all. A long but successful campaign for Brexit, a stunning election victory with the Labour collapse in the North giving him an unassailable Commons majority of eighty and media adulation.

Then came the Coronabug and what will surely go down in history as the five-month cockup that tarnished Bunter’s legacy and has probably destroyed what last bit of credibility he had.

Risk is Part of Life

It seems that the police in Norwich – bless ‘em – have spoken severely to a teenager for going round the suburbs in a 17th century plague doctor’s mask, like a huge crow’s head and a long black cloak.

Citizens are said to have claimed he was frightening people. I can understand that very young children might be a little worried, but adults – surely not?

After all, people have been photographed wearing diving gear instead of facemasks in supermarkets and let’s at least try to inject a wee bit of humour into the sad hysteria of what currently passes as normal life in Britain.

Mind you, it is interesting to note that our new state militia think it’s a matter for them. Is it the law that only the Government are allowed to frighten people? 

And is the thing they fear most of all that we might laugh at them? I used to enjoy watching the evening news on BBC but the programme would now be laughable if it was not so pathetic and I certainly won’t watch the ‘bug briefing’ that takes place for interminable hours just before it. It does give me time to enjoy the garden in Spring sunshine but I really do feel that the Media in general have gone overboard in their desire to frighten us all out of our wits.

Because let’s face it, from the moment we take our first breath, death – or the prospect of death – sits on our shoulders. Yet we don’t let it stop us from living normally. We ride bikes, climb trees, smoke, drink, swim in the sea, drive cars, talk to strangers. And most of the time we get away with it.

Life is all a bit of a gamble and part of growing up is learning to balance the potential for gainful living against the prospect of disaster.

Coronavirus has changed all that. Faced with this threat, we have responded by trying to eliminate all risk from our lives. The elderly (that includes myself) and vulnerable have been told to imprison themselves indefinitely. Children have been taken out of schools, the economy has been shut down, life has been put on hold. Fear is a prison of the mind, and we are all behind bars.

I can vaguely understand the reasoning behind this. Stay home, save lives, protect the NHS. That was the original government mantra and to do anything else would probably – by no means certainly – have resulted in a far greater death toll. But it is not and cannot become ‘the new norm’ damnit! Unless the government is prepared to accept complete financial, cultural and social ruin, we the ordinary people have to be allowed to re-acquaint ourselves with risk.

Let’s face it risk and man’s willingness to undertake it is the source of some of humanity’s greatest achievements.

From the electric light to the Moon landings, via almost every technological and medical advance you can think of, risk lies at the root. Risk is inherent in our greatest works of fashion, art, music and literature, expressions of our human desire to push boundaries in pursuit of discovery.

To be alive is to confront risk. To be really alive is to push one’s boundaries to the limit. If no one ever left their home or entered a place of work without a hundred per cent assurance of safety, no one would go anywhere and the world would be a very boring place to be.

Of course, there is a difference between diving into obvious danger and taking a managed risk, but surely it is time to start living again. Slowly, cautiously and with every precaution we must get on with our lives because none of us can cheat death. It is there on our shoulders throughout our lives so surely we must try and enjoy every moment that we are still alive. After a while, locking ourselves away takes away the will to live and the future for all of us seems horribly bleak. Man is a social animal and even loners like me need to occasionally meet up with our friends and family. We need our own chunks of normality back.

What we must have now from Bunter Johnson and his squabbling, buck-passing team of no hopers is a simple message advising us all, young and old alike to use our common sense. Yes, we must shield those with health conditions or other frailties but otherwise let us do whatever we can to get life back to normal and get the country moving again.

This general negativity has gone on far too long and we are all suffering now.

A Legacy of Failure

I suppose I have been interested in the practice of government for most of my adult life and I have long since realised that taken as a whole, politicians are not very bright – and sometimes they are dangerously gullible. They surround themselves with armies of respectful bureauprats and special advisers and make their decisions almost entirely on the advice of these desk jockeys.

If it is good advice and the politicians act on it, they emerge with glory. If the advice is pathetic, even disastrous and they take it, they emerge utterly discredited. One day this Coronabug crisis will be nothing but a fairly nasty memory and life will have moved on. Does anyone really remember swine flu, bird flu, MERS, SARS, BSE? We were told each marked the end of civilisation but we are still here and plodding on with our interrupted lives.

Does anyone remember the dire predictions of the Bank of England, the Treasury and the Confederation of British Industry that Brexit would virtually destroy the British economy?

Yet we voted against all their advice and were proved completely right.

Yet now we have another crisis in the Coronabug and the utterly useless advice that Bunter Johnson chose to follow has achieved what Adolf Hitler could not – it has trashed the fifth biggest economy in the world.

I am horribly afraid that the government and the media are still seeking to avoid telling us the level of the fiscal damage being done because they are scared of how the public will react. It is just too frightening.

Let’s face it, people and nations are resilient. We could have taken the extra casualties, buried the prematurely dead, shared our grief and got on with life. But from this advice and Bunter J’s decisions, the nation will be crippled for a generation.

Another thing about politicians, shared by bureaucrats, quangocrats and academics too is that when they screw, up their first priority is not to put it right. Oh no – the immediate aim is to cover it up or blame someone else.

We are told by political apologists that our leaders had no choice but to ‘follow the science.’

What arrant nonsense! The truth is that the boffins have their own agenda. They live off research grants, constantly renewed and hopefully increased. They need these regular dollops of public money to sit in their ivory towers shielded from most of the realities the rest of us have to face, and shuffle their graphs, slide rules and figures to produce their  ‘models’ in order to convince the rest of us that they can foretell the future.

I have more faith in fairground Gypsy ladies and their crystal balls.

Ninety percent of the scientific prophecies turn out to be wrong and the accurate ones are often a fluke. But they need those research grants and the moneybags will not pay for cosy reassurance. They need us to be scared. Predictions of disaster are lucrative.

Even more bizarrely perhaps, the boffins do not always say the same thing. Sometimes their models vary from one to another because they are human – even though they might feel they are superior beings.

A couple of months ago – it seems longer, Bunter J was offered a menu of possibilities, including a far more moderate and realistic forecast of what would probably happen from Professor Sunetra Gupta of Oxford.

He turned that one down I’m afraid. Instead on advice, he picked the scariest one of the lot. It was from Imperial College, London, in the person of Professor Neil Ferguson, now departed because he couldn’t keep his flies buttoned. It is frightening to think that if it wasn’t for his need of an adulterous bonk or two, this man would still be advising the government! He has always been a disaster damnit!

It was overlooked or ignored that on swine flu his ‘model’ was completely wrong. Up to forty million dead worldwide, it said. The actual figure was eighteen thousand five hundred! He was wrong too on SARS, MERS, Bird Flu, BSE and the others yet still Bunter followed his advice. Why?

On COVID 19 Ferguson predicted half a million possible deaths but more likely only a quarter of a million.

We are still below thirty five thousand. It may yet climb to fifty thousand, which sounds pretty awful, but it is half the annual British life loss for illness and accident per annum.

According to available statistics, about ninety five percent of those will be the very elderly and frail or those deeply weakened by a pre-existing condition. There is an acronym that is apparently being very quietly mentioned in the corridors of power at the moment – WHDA.

It stands for ‘would have died anyway.

’Compared with our national population of sixty seven million, these figures are tiny. Yet all sixty seven million will be affected and their lives impoverished by the flattening of our economy.

Does Mr Johnson want that as his legacy I wonder? Somehow, I doubt it but unless he and his stooges wake up to reality pretty damned quickly, that is how this government will be remembered.

I used to think that Bunter Johnson was, at least, amusing, but I see nothing amusing in the landscape of ruin he is busy creating. Once people begin to realise what he has done, and how needless it was, I doubt that he will ever be forgiven. 

Leadership Lost

It was the eighth largest television audience ever in this country and like over twenty eight million other citizens, I sat down to watch our esteemed prime minister ‘address the nation’ on Sunday evening.

I now wish I had given it a miss.

Not only do I, like so many other folk feel more confused than before about what measures we are taking as a nation to beat this bug, but my faint – always very faint – hope that Bunter Johnson might prove himself to be a leader rather than a posh buffoon has been thrown right out of the window.

He huffed and he puffed but the only thing he succeeded in blowing down was his own precarious reputation.

Where on earth did he dig up the confusing nonsense he was spouting? We learn now that the speech was not approved by Cabinet beforehand, but why not damnit?! Surely that is what the Cabinet is for? Yes, I know that when he became the boss, Bunter threw out the big beasts who might have disputed his views and appointed a load of plastic stooges, but surely even they should have been entitled to their say.

It seems though that the director of communications in Downing Street is a man called Lee Cain, whose only claim to fame heretofore was to dress up as a bright yellow chicken when he was a Daily Mirror reporter and harangue senior Tories for dodging tough questions.

Yet now this nincompoop bans far more reputable hacks from questioning Bunter J about the current crisis and his lamentable handling of it.

Cain is obviously out of his depth and so too I fear is Johnson himself. He likes to think of himself as a mirror image of Winston Churchill, but he is far from that I’m afraid. Like him or loathe him, Churchill was a brave man who proved himself on the front line and as a war time leader. Bunter on the other hand hides behind a smokescreen of shambling braggadocio which doesn’t fool anyone.

Yesterday was the very first occasion that as the leader of this nation, he has addressed Parliament on the coronavirus situation. He hasn’t made a single Commons statement about the biggest crisis to hit this country since the second world war in the fifteen long weeks since the World Health Organisation announced that it was a global health emergency.

I know the man has been a victim of the bug himself, but if he was not in a fit state to lead, he should have resigned and made way for someone who could. A number of commentators have indeed wondered whether his illness is not the reason for his shambling performance on Sunday evening but I believe that for all his bluster, Bunter Johnson is completely out of his depth. Yes, I voted for his party but that was mainly due to the lamentable standard of Corbyn’s opposition and I am sure that goes for a number of voters around the country.

Even on Sunday, Bunter adopted a threatening tone at one stage and talked about doubling fines for non-compliance – with what I wondered – and in these circumstances, that is surely self-defeating. The British public have been wonderful in their compliance with the lockdown requirements and to threaten them at this stage was pathetic.

And of course, he prattled on about cycling and walking. Going back to Churchill, ‘Never in the field of human conflict have so many talked about exercise to so few.’ The right to bumble along the pavements and get in the way of other people is now dressed up as a key freedom. This exhortation to keep yourself fit in the middle of a pandemic is a peculiar form of denial, but again it is clearly about moving the narrative from collective to personal responsibility. And personal failure. We are told to ‘stay alert.’ For what damnit?! If alertness could conquer this virus, we would all be fine. The anxiety many of us are experiencing is actually because we are too damned alert. None of us can create an antiviral force-field around us and none of us can see the bug that is threatening us. How then can we be alert? Well, I suppose everyone being alert is cheaper than personal protective equipment, testing and all that faff – or so our revered Prime Minister seems to feel.

And what about the farce surrounding our airports? It is two months since my Sheepscombe friends came back from Australia and I expressed amazement that not only did they not have to be quarantined, but that checks at Heathrow had been non existent. Let’s face it, ninety percent of other countries – including Australia – have been imposing quarantine on incoming travellers since the middle of March.

We were told that the government was ‘following the science’ but now they seem to have changed their minds or perhaps lost faith in the scientists and will start imposing the necessary quarantines, but not until, the end of the month – still nearly three weeks away.

Isn’t there a proverb about horses and stable doors? Eighteen million people have landed in this country since March, many of them from countries where the coronabug is running rampant.

I’m afraid that Bunter J now wants us to ‘control the virus’ ourselves because he has lost control of this crisis.

Watching him on Sunday evening – I had lost interest by Monday – he looked to me like a big bumbling blustering rabbit in headlights who has no idea what to do next.

I feat that we, the people of Britain are on our own at the moment and can expect no guidance from our buffoon of a leader. I read a description of him last week as a ‘Churchill Tribute Act,’ but at the moment I don’t think he is even a Johnson Tribute Act.