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A photo of what was believed to be a Chinese spy balloon, taken before it was shot down over Montana, has now been released by the United States government. That's how Americans decided to deal with the violation of their air-space. By way of contrast, a similar spy balloon that was hovering over Britain has been given a council house. The local authority involved is also arranging for extended family reunion. Dozens of other spy balloons will be able to join it. The first one will be invited to meet the king on a tour of every British military base before starting work with unrestricted access at MI6. However it is rumoured the balloon will reject the offer as it had drifted away from its target. Being more interested in the kind of meaningful secrets that republics have, it was quoted as saying "if they wanted fairy tales or public-school-boy daydreams, I'd just give my handlers an Ian Fleming novella or tickets to Harry Potter World."

Wed, 01 Mar 2023 16:10:12 GMT post menu

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sympathy for the divas

South Park's writers have joined the horde of commentators ridiculing Harry Windsor. He and his uncle Andy are big fluffy sideshow prizes to aim at. Softer targets would be difficult to imagine. It's much tougher to go after monarchy or royalty as institutions. Few mainstream media channels encourage that anyway. Harry and Andrew end up being sacrificial lambs who routinely take the fall. They are not to blame for their situations and yet it's always open season on them. Neither asked to be feted or spoiled. Neither asked for the attention. We allow them to be treated that way and then expect them to be paragons of normalcy. They must wonder why it's big brother who gets to be head of state and not either of them. They must ask themselves why a sibling is the chosen one, particularly when they know just how ordinary that person is. We then act surprised when they wander off the reservation, especially Andrew. There's no reeling that guy back in, even to something as weird and shady as the royal family. Do you think they ever go a little further and question why any member of their clan should be head of state rather than someone more qualified? If they cannot cope with the arbitrary nature of succession, why should we be expected to? Maybe as average human beings without particular gifts it is easy to identify with them. The mass appeal of royalty might be that they are just sublimely ordinary rather than in any way gifted. We do tend to resent the freaks who have greater intellect and ability than the rest of us. We would rather forsake the benefits those people could generate than let them think for one second they are better than us. Heaven forbid we allow them to think they are valued. We'd rather worship halfwits than concede someone may know better than us. Sooner or later that hubris catches up with society. When talented people are actively excluded from contributing to problem resolution in favour of mediocrities, this is the world you get. Remember that, as it gets warmer, more overcrowded, and increasingly hostile. Content yourself with the common misconception that a king is a figurehead. The present one had been figuring to head up the finalisation of the Northern Ireland protocol negotiations. Relax, it was just a move to try to scam the Loyalist community with a presumptive royal seal of approval for the deal. Your world can be entrusted to unlelected officials. You don't need a say in anything. Just get your bunting out for the coronation people, and assume the position.

Sat, 25 Feb 2023 12:54:27 GMT post menu

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Groundhog Day

Keir Starmer was quoted yesterday as saying Labour wants to "give Britain its future back." This new campaign slogan apparently went through several iterations. Back to the Future was taken. Forward to the Past did not poll well with the target demographic. Make Britain the Same Again was not popular with focus groups - it was just too close to the truth. Give Britain its Future Back was a winner with the upper echelons of the Party. Few of us have the giant brains needed to follow their strategic thought process, but we can try. If Britain once had a future does that mean going back in time to find it? Does that also mean you bring the past back with you? If so, why bother? That is where Britain is, and that is where Britain is likely to remain. Politicians can spin anything and it is up to voters to decipher the nonsense. It's obvious Starmer wants Britain to keep sinking in the quicksand of monarchy, aristocracy, and an unwritten constitution. That way people like him can keep their meaningless titles and continiue to lord it over the rest of us for no discernable reason. We'll still be doing as they say rather than as they do. The fact he leads the Labour Party and blurts out vague election promises is one if the most regressive things most of us will witness in our lifetimes. Could someone please shove him in a DeLorean and hit it with the requisite 1.21 Gigawatts? We won't care where he ends up so long as he can't get back to our present.

Fri, 24 Feb 2023 09:01:57 GMT post menu

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Nicola Sturgeon dropped the ingenious idea of treating a Scottish National Party electoral victory as green light for independence almost immediately after a recent visit from Rishi Sunak. What combination of threats or bribes put the fear in this tenacious lady? The press have speculated about a resulting vacuum of leadership that will undermine the momentum for a free Scotland, but they forget that all republicans are Spartacus. Everyone will be ready to step up and answer the call. Sturgeon is still lukewarm in her political resting place but that will not prevent Labour's Starm Troopers from trying to parachute in. Just days after Sturgeon has stepped down as Scotland's first minister, Labour's cheerless leader is trying to woo voters north of Hadrian's Wall. Anyone who understands the history of organised labour will not mention his hijacked party in the same year as they would invoke the Tolpuddle Martyrs, let alone the same breath. Whatever the media says about Jeremy Corbyn, he wasn't the consummate lick-spittle some would-be leaders are. It is rumoured Jason Statham will play Starmer in a spin-off from The Expendables franchise in 2025. You'll be able to see The Unelectables at a polling station near you.

Sun, 19 Feb 2023 15:30:03 GMT post menu

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There are conflicts about which most of us feel ill-equipped to comment. Being an observer does not inevitably mean you are qualified. Sometimes historical troubles defy true comprehension by those on the outside. Only the people directly affected can give an informed opinion. While other arguments may be of limited value, finding an exit ramp on a highway in the fog could be a matter of glimpsing a clear sign. It is not so much a moment of clarity as it is a fleeting opportunity to consider an alternate route. This is particularly true when you feel that commitment to one road has honor, and is there anything more honorable than loyalty? Then the fog is perceived as comforting and beneficial rather than as having the potential to cloud judgement. Loyalty by its very nature can exclude questions about what it is you are being loyal to. There are few motives to interrogate the familiar. We rarely scrutinise anything we regard as obvious. When received wisdom is treated as fact, it probably has the force of habitual belief behind it. Any challenge to those beliefs will be resisted with anger and violence. A sense of belonging to some greater union seems futile when titled landowners enjoy elevated belonging and stake-holding. The reality is that good systems of government are characterised by justice, occupational mobility, and low levels of income disparity, not extreme inequality and insecurity. It can require years of seeing the signs before you brake for the exit. That decision would be easier if you hadn't been convinced by outsiders that every other road is a gauntlet controlled by your opponents. Traditional partners who say they want to help may actually be intent on protecting their own interests at your expense. Duplicity is reflexive for the establishments of some nations. Former combatants may in fact have more in common with each other than they do with supposedly well-meaning and generous patron states. If there is an element of dependence, will there be an equal degree of wilful blindness to that possibility? Trust can be as powerful as loyalty, if twice as rare. Here's to reasons for trust and peaceful unity.

Sat, 11 Feb 2023 11:11:40 GMT post menu

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