Saturday, 9 July 2016

No cycling, but there's plenty going on in the world...

It's Saturday morning. The weather is fine but I'm not on the bike. It's almost 0900hrs and normally I would be in Westerham drinking tea and munching biscuits, but I'm not. I'm sitting in my living room, at the table, writing. I'm not ill; that was last week, but I am feeling a little stuffed up, a little chesty, that's all. I'm not cycling purely because I had to take somebody somewhere and I think, shortly, I'll be taking other people to somewhere else. So no riding today, although I'm planning on being back in the saddle tomorrow (Sunday).

There comes a time with cycling when I find that we're all slacking a little bit. Suddenly, I notice that we're only going once a week and I feel something needs to be done before we stop going altogether, not that anything drastic like that would ever happen. In many ways, of late, I've been the chief culprit: giving people early morning lifts, having a cold, things must change.

So, with no cycling comes a boring post. You might have noticed recently how I've been a little angry about the Brexit vote. Well, I'm getting over it, just, although I notice that Leadsom – one of two women fighting to be Prime Minister following David Cameron's lily-livered decision to step down – has been shooting off about how she's the best bet for PM because she's got kids. Well, the fact that Teresa May, the favourite for the job, hasn't got any children – and clearly had trouble getting to the point where she realised she wasn't going to have any – escaped Leadsom's mind. Look, she's a banker and a Brexit banker too, she's not the woman for the job. May was a 'remainer' and while some say that's not a good qualification for the job (as she's got to negotiate our exit from the EU) the fact remains that May is a proper politician, not some jumped up banker (let's not forget that bankers are THE problem, not immigrants). Bankers are why we have austerity. So why have Leadsom in charge? Let her get back to looking after her children.

In a sense, of course, the country is rudderless. While we have a PM, he's keeping his head down, so the sooner the leadership contest is done and dusted, the better.

The British political system is in state of upheaval at the moment. Not only is there no real PM in charge of the country, we've got an opposition party that is falling apart. Half of the shadow cabinet – probably more – has resigned, the leader of the opposition should resign, but is staying put despite being urged to go by many leading figures of the Labour party, but he's hanging on. My view is he will never be the Prime Minister so he might as well go now and save the country from more Tories.
Leadsom – she's a banker so no way!

And then, of course, there's 'Brexit'. As I mentioned earlier, it's all dying down a little bit as people get used to the idea that we're coming out of the EU. Oddly, going back to Leadsom for a minute, she said in an interview with the Times newspaper that she would make a good PM because she has kids. She spoke about how she'd be looking out for her kids and I found myself thinking that she can't care that much about them or she would have voted to remain in the EU and not 'leave', but there you have it. To continue briefly with this digression, I think it's obvious that I'm all for Teresa May. I don't know why, I like her, she has a bird-like face, she's been on Desert Island Discs, her dad was a vicar for heaven's sake. What's not to like? Leadsom = banker. Not to be trusted.

And then, of course, there's upheaval of a different kind. Since the Brexit vote was announced there has been a marked increase in the number of racist attacks in the UK as those who believed the Brexit vote gave them carte blanche to tell foreigners to 'piss of back to their own country' and 'stop nicking all our jobs' decided to make their feelings known. For a lot of people, immigration was the big issue in the EU referendum and while it would be unfair to say that all Brexiters are racists – they're not – so-called 'Brexit' did provide those with racist tendencies (I doubt if any racists voted to remain in the EU) with a kind of mandate to up the racist ante a little bit.

What is slightly worrying is the spate of resignations that followed the EU referendum result. First Cameron sloped off, rather than stay and keep the country on course, thus triggering the leadership election. Then there was Boris Johnson – once the leadership contest was underway he stepped down having been shafted by Orville lookalike Gove who himself has been knocked out of the leadership contest. Then there was Nigel Farage, leader of UKIP. He said he wanted his life back. In my opinion, all of these people have one thing in common: they all fucked up the country and then buggered off and the last one will be Leadsom. She'll lose the leadership contest and crawl back under her stone.

No mention of resignations would be complete without mentioning Roy Hodgson, the manager of the England team at Euro 2016. He was managing a typically rubbish English football team and it goes without saying that the team lost and was sent packing. Immediately after they left the pitch, Hodsgon resigned his post. Leave voters say "Let's Make Great Britain Great Again", well, my view is that they won't make it great again, it's impossible. If you're outside of the UK, the best way to get an impression of what this country is all about is to watch an episode of Eastenders and/or a football match involving the England team – together they sum up what this country is all about. Oh, and throw in Britain's Got Talent too, another example of how it is IMPOSSIBLE to make Great Britain great again.

Teresa May should be the new Prime Minister
Meanwhile, in America, more racist attacks, this time policemen shooting black people and then black people shooting white policemen (five dead before the gunman was killed by some kind of robot). You reap what you you sow, remember that. Policemen shooting black people is common 'over there' and it's not good, but it's common – and it all ties in with the swing to the right that appears to be happening on both sides of the Atlantic. Over there it's 'let's make America great again' while over here it's been 'let's make Great Britain great again'.

Nationalism, incidentally, is the most dangerous thing there is and that's what this is all about. The reason it is happening is because our politicians have been too arrogant for their own good. They haven't been listening to the people, preferring instead to pander to big business and the banking community and ignoring the wishes of the people. That's why we're out of Europe – the masses have spoken – and it's a similar story in the USA. In the beginning Trump was a rank outsider, but I said it back then and I'll say it again, he WILL be the next US president. Where politics is concerned I've always felt that if I think about the worst thing that can possibly happen, it will happen. And sure enough, we're out of the EU and, I believe, Trump will be the leader of the free world. It's a bad place to be, but because our politicians simply aren't very good – nobody trusts them and they have no idea of how ordinary people live their lives – we're in this mess.

Micah Johnson – you reap what you sow
Trust in politicians is at an all-time low in the UK and it's a distrust that goes back to the invasion of Iraq and the likes of Tony Blair and Jack Straw, the two eternal villains of the piece. They lied to Parliament and the public, took us into an illegal war and didn't have an exit plan other than to simply up sticks and leave the Iraqis to get on with it – a bit like Cameron, Johnson, Gove, Farage and all those who figured they could take us out of the EU and then simply walk away.

This week saw the publication of the Chilcott Report – the long-awaited Chilcott Report. Basically, Lord Chilcott told us what we already knew, but it was good to see Blair squirming in front of the media and, on Channel Four News, to see Jack Straw apologising to camera. What next? Who knows? But one thing is for certain: nobody will end up in jail.

And now the sun is shining, it's just gone 1000hrs and I'm still sitting at the table writing this post. Next up? A trip to London to pick up a tent, a muddy tent that went to Glastonbury a few weeks ago. All I can say is that there will be a ride tomorrow.

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