Today a new news service is available in the United Kingdom. The Russian state sponsored news channel “Russia Today” has started broadcasting, amid grumbles by organisations such as the BBC as to whether Russia Today could present a fair and unbiased news service, as opposed to a propaganda service. Continue reading
I miss northern voices. For four years I lived in Manchester and Birkenhead and almost every voice I heard was accented with the sounds of the North, or at least what Londoners regard as the North. there is a sincerity in the tine of Northern voices; I cannot describe the sounds- concepts of flat vowels, buried word endings, glottal reinforced consonants and similar attempts to describe sounds are without much meaning to the likes of me. Continue reading
I cannot but enjoy this autumn in London. the temperatures are hot and there is none of the equinoctial wind which blows London dust into my eyes this time of year. I expect it will end soon, and this warm October will give way to a cold November, which will start to freeze the tips of my fingers and pour cold dust into my lungs, to join the accumulation of much other dust. Continue reading
No one wants a government that they did not vote for to run the country. The Scots who voted for independence recently used as a main plank of their argument for independence that Scotland had had to “suffer” a government which the Scots did not elect and by independence they would be able to enjoy a government that they did elect.
That argument is hopeless. Of course, a majority of people in Scotland did not vote for the same government (or coalition) that a majority of people in the whole United Kingdom elected. That is the nature of democracy. In the referendum the people of Glasgow did not vote to stay in the United Kingdom. The people who live in the house where I lived have during the last twenty five years voted for all sorts of political parties including the Green Party and on one desperate occasion when the candidates were all disgusting, the Official Monster Raving Looney Party. Perhaps I should declare my home to be independent of the United Kingdom. I could then set up my own government, my own tax regime and ensure that those who governed me always met with my approval.
Silent as the days draw close
Cooling the earth, shielding the sun
Time turning around the world
That quick thief has us on the run
Stealing what we cannot touch
Coughing our blood, taking our breath
Time turning and laughing at us
Laughing at us and laughing at death.
The Gross Domestic Product of the United Kingdom has risen by 0.7% in the three months to 30 September 2014. GDP figures are closely scrutinised. Governments regard a growing GDP as an important indicator of the economic success of the nation, and they boast when it rises and they are criticised when it falls. But GDP is just one measure and is not a proper indicator of the economic position of the people who live in a nation, only (usually) a minority of people and some big businesses. Continue reading