The State of the Union.

The pound has dropped to, according to one Financial Times calculation, a 168 year low. The last time the pound was that low HMS Daedelus reported a sighting of a sea serpent and 5,000 people died of cholera in New York. Incidentally the British Empire was somewhere near its height, we could squeeze our colonies to plug the gaps in our economy. That is no longer an option that is open to us.

But what do the press make of this backlash, and by backlash I mean terrible things actually happening due to the stupid Brexit vote? Let’s have a quick look at who these measured moral guardians have decided to blame. I’ll start with the Daily Mail, it’s the obvious choice.

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Yep.  Front page, all across the top.

What a surprise.  The first, last and only retreat of the brainless right when they’re proven wrong.  Let’s do this then, word by word.

First of all apparently I’m ‘damned’ and so is the MP representing my interest and all of my friends and anyone who agrees with me, which is slightly less than half of the people who actually voted in the referendum.  Well fine, it’s not even a swearword any more so who cares?

Secondly I’m ‘unpatriotic.’  I don’t feel an especially strong need to defend myself from this facile statement but I know some do.  Just remember; this sort of right wing filth consider themselves patriots so if you disagree with them you are, by their infantile logic, unpatriotic.  This absurd fantasy of inverted, self serving, megalomania is probably the best argument for retiring the meaningless word entirely.  Wilde said that ‘patriotism is the virtue of the vicious,’ which is a good line but I disagree, it’s the virtue of the meaningless, the platitude of the pointless, a rallying cry for those who know they have lost.  It, like faith, is exactly as worthy as the actions it inspires and absolutely no more.  Treat those who question your patriotism with the blistering contempt they deserve.

‘Bremoaners’… weak.  Weak, Daily Mail, I thought right wing papers were supposed to have a knack for puns?  ‘Bremoaners’ is just rubbish.

‘Their plot to subvert the will of the British people.’  All right, I think I have to explain something that most adults understand: when everything goes wrong and someone points it out it is not necessarily their fault.  Sometimes you have a terrible idea, the grown up thing to do is to own it and try to rectify your mistake.  And it’s only a plot if they do it in secret, nobody is being quiet about this nor are they hiding their intentions.  Grow up.  As for the idea that the way this is being handled is somehow ‘subverting the will of the British people’ I feel the need to remind you that there were two boxes on the ballot, one which said ‘leave the European Union’ and one which said ‘remain in the European Union.’  There was no mention of leaving the single market, no mention of free movement of labour, nothing about the human rights act… nothing.  The shape of Brexit is absolutely up for debate, why do you seem to be so worried?

Time to move on, I think.  Let’s see what the Express has to say.

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That is a fairly unambiguous and sinister threat.  Are they suggesting banning discussion of the most important political issue in Britain today?  Are they suggesting leaving the EU with no plan whatsoever?  Let’s take a look inside to find out:

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Oh.

Nope, they’re talking about jailing their political opponents.  This is what political discourse in our press is nowadays.  This is disgusting.

Well let me show you something that I find important, Daily Express, this is my passport:

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Do you see it yet?  No?  Let me show you again:

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One more time, because you still won’t see it:

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You want to strip me of my citizenship.  That’s what this is about.  I am a European, the closest I ever felt to ‘patriotic’ was my pride in being a part of the project that put a stop to the constant apocalyptic wars across this continent.  You want to lock up people who disagree with you?  You want us all to shut up and let you do whatever you like you small minded cowards?  You have so little faith in your position that you want to imprison the ‘Bremoaners’?

Try it.  Come and try to take sixteen and a half million people away.  See what happens, you simpering xenophobic scum.

I dare you.

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A Living Tradition.

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Morris bells, for most of my life the sound of summer.

  Tradition matters.  In a way I wish it didn’t, a world in which we could pick up and put down customs at the drop of a hat would certainly be a more harmonious one.  It would also be far more empty, a joyless trudge through time with no festivals, no holidays, and no town criers.  I like traditions, but they can be problematic; it is the nature of traditions that they are abandoned only rarely, because without continuity they are nothing.

  I want you, if you’re unfamiliar with British folk dancing traditions, to bear the above paragraph in mind when I tell you that some Morris sides still perform in blackface.

  I’ve been brought up in a family deeply involved in folk music in general and Morris dancing in particular.  My Dad started Pigsty Morris in 1987 and my Mum has been a clog dancer since 1976, my brother and sister enjoy ceilidhs and folk festivals and, though I have drifted away from it over the years, I still have a fondness for some of my childhood memories of the folk scene.  In the interests of full disclosure I should point out that Pigsty Morris have never performed in blackface.

  ‘Well?’ I hear you say, ‘when are you going to get to the point?’

  Fair enough.  There is a debate currently raging about the use of blackface amongst the Morris community.

  At first I could not comprehend why this was even in question.  It’s blackface.  A historical blot that I instinctively find uncomfortable at best.  What mad ideas have led Morris dancers to think they can get away with blackface when Al Jolson and the Black and White Minstrels have almost been deliberately erased from the cultural history of the western world?

  Well, actually, a few things.  None of them are good enough, nothing could be, but they might explain why the debate is raging instead of long over.  Also I should point out that I don’t believe anybody in the debate is deliberately racist, honestly, you’ve largely never met a more strident bunch of liberal lefties in your life.

  Firstly; like most things to do with Morris dancing, the actual reasons for it are a mystery.  It almost certainly doesn’t have roots in racism.  Some people say that blacking up began as a kind of crude disguise, a way to hide your identity from meddling priests or landlords.  I think it was more likely something to do with industry, miners meeting to practice at the end of a shift and adapting it to be part of their costume.  Maybe that’s all wishful thinking.  Maybe it has racist origins, maybe not, maybe there’s no real reason beyond a simple way to make your costume more striking and outlandish.

  Secondly; it’s a tradition.  It’s at least a couple of hundred years old, maybe more (people tend to write a lot of authoritative pieces dating the origins of Morris dancing, they have wildly different dates and are never backed up with any kind of solid evidence.  It’s a mystery, and I’m okay with that).  If you become, by dint of effort, the guardian of a tradition then it is your duty to defend it.  It’s a good thing to do, preserving traditions serves a useful purpose.

BUT

  Well… everything else really.  I used to quite like it when I was a child.  A white child.  I even used to like their dogged determination to ignore the changing times when I was a teenager.  I understand their trepidation, but Morris dancing is a living tradition, and life is change.

  I also understand why the people doing it might be so upset.  There is a tacit suggestion that they are racist in urging them to stop doing the thing they’re doing.  They think ‘I’m not a racist, I’m the person doing it, therefore it can’t be racist.’  There’s reason there, but there isn’t logic.

  Ladies and Gentlemen of the pro-blackface camp: you are wrong.  Right now I can just about understand that you’re trying to maintain a tradition and that’s very much a part of what you’re supposed to do.  But if you keep this up it will start to get dismal.  That instinctive urge you feel to keep blackface is the same urge that keeps bullfighting in Spain and dog restaurants in China.  I get it, I get why those traditions carry on, but I understand even more why they shouldn’t.  And please know that if you don’t stop, soon, the rest of the world will begin to notice and you will very publically be on the wrong side of history.

  So why not start a new tradition?  Why not wear masks?  You’re a creative bunch, I’m sure you could come up with something awesome.  Why not burn a few pots of shoe polish every year to commemorate the time you used to do that crazy thing?

  I’m sorry you’re losing a part of your performance, I’m sorry you feel that it lessens the importance or the art of Morris dancing (which it absolutely does not), but it’s time to put this one to bed.  Sic Transit Gloria Mundi.

  And, now that’s out of the way, it’s time to deal with the Morris Ring.

A Well Deserved Dressing Down for Absolutely Everybody. Including You.

Yes, and me.

You-finger
This is all your fault.

  I’m angry.  I’ve tried to calm down using music, booze and venting at a mirror but I can’t. Instead I’ve written a comprehensive telling off for everybody including you.  In the interested of making this readable in a timely manner I’ve limited myself to two sentences and no swearing, which was a hell of a challenge.  Read this and feel bad, you deserve to.

  Brexit voters:

  The Poor.

  I understand you’ve been messed around and despised by successive governments for decades now but which part of you decided ‘I know, I’ll mash my nose in to a fine paste with a heavy meat tenderiser to spite my face?’ The knee jerk reactionary part, that’s which, you damned fools.

  The Woman Who Said That She Voted to Leave the EU Because She ‘Didn’t See the Point in her Daughter Learning French’ Because, In Her Words, ‘She’s Never Going to Go There.’

  Merely repeating what you said is dressing down enough you utter, utter cretin.

  Cynical Appropriators of World War 2.

  Seventy year old conflicts from a time when the shape of world politics was absolutely unrecognisable are completely irrelevant and when you bring up either World War to argue about Brexit you, by implication, suggest that I dishonoured the memory of my grandfather’s distinguished service in the Navy fighting the Nazis by voting to remain.  How dare you.

  Blustering Morons.

  Being concerned about immigration may not always be racist but it is the sort of curtain twitching xenophobia I had hoped we’d left in the twentieth century.  Add to that the fact that we will need to take part in the common market in order to survive, which will also guarantee free movement of labour and so make no difference to immigration, and I hope you feel like the idiot you are.

  Remain Voters:

  Young People.

  The tiny number of you who voted overwhelmingly wanted to remain, the ones who didn’t bother deserve the hell they’re bringing down upon themselves.  And well done for failing to organise all those rallies before the vote when they might have actually made a difference.

  All Other Remain Voters, Including Me and, Probably, You.

  Where was your passion before the results were announced?  You failed to convince anyone because you didn’t even bother to try or, if you did, you failed to say anything remotely inspiring or interesting, idiot.

  Tories:

  David Cameron.

  Hey, you necro-porciphiliac, how’s that plan to unite the Tories by getting the European question answered once and for all doing?  Keep your shiny cheeks shut on the back benches, you abject failure.

  Boris Johnson.

  Hope you’re happy you jowly, mop headed, Beano character, look what you did.  Also you owe the country enough money to build a new hospital every month and I’m sorely tempted to try to find a way to take you to court to get it, liar.

  Theresa May.

  You’ve failed to show even the slightest concern for the failure of the remain campaign, the campaign of which you were a part, and as a result of your failure you’ve risen to the top by virtue of everyone else sinking down.  What a shameful, pointless Prime Ministership you’ve managed to grasp.

  Labour:

  Corbyn.

  Good man you may be but your complete inability to do anything but yell in to an echo chamber has destroyed all hope of anything ever getting any better.  I want a competent version of you in charge of the Labour party so that it can win elections, to most people a ‘movement’ is something you flush down the toilet.

  The Parliamentary Labour Party.

  He’s been fighting for this for forty years, his supporters are absolutely passionate and full throated and you’re bringing nothing to the table.  The fact that you thought a mass resignation could work just demonstrates how completely out of touch you are.

  Momentum.

  Your tepid and simpering response to the disgusting, misogynistic, homophobic abuse I’ve seen some of you hurl at people online is repulsive and you should all be ashamed, saying ‘but they’re mean to us too’ is a pathetic excuse used to do nothing. Also you’re doing it wrong, a cult of personality is supposed to form around a person with an actual personality.

  The Press:

  The BBC.

  ‘Balance’ doesn’t mean inviting one pro-brexit economist on for every pro-remain economist any more than it means getting climate change deniers on to argue with other people who are actually correct.  I’m not sure what the point of reporting news actually is if facts, established actual facts, are ignored because the government of the day don’t like them.

  The Murdoch Papers.

  Three decades of howling about immigrants and whinging about the EU has got you what you wanted, well done, you’ve destroyed even the illusion of democracy in order to serve Darth Murdoch.  You might be the worst people in this, you bunch of race baiting filth.

  UKIP and Other Racists:

  Nigel Farage.

  You said ‘not a bullet was fired’ in order to achieve a ‘revolution,’ forgetting Jo Cox’s murder which was absolutely the result of your mendacious campaign clearing a path for the sort of racism you’ve always pretended to disavow.  Now you’ve vanished because you already know how terrible the storm that’s coming is going to be, well done Wormtongue.

  Every other racist.

  Slope off and rot in your hovels, dogs.  In the 21st Century the only excuse for actual, full blown racism is genuine cranial trauma, otherwise you’re the sort of simpering coward who fears anything they don’t expect.

The Cuckoo Nest Plot.

This man is an arsehole.
Lucifer. Not as interesting looking as many Devil Worshipers hoped.

Boris Johnson is not standing for the leadership of the Conservative party.  This, to many people, is a bit confusing.  If you are a leave voter and reading this then, firstly, you made a stupid choice at the ballot last week and you should feel awful about it, secondly you’re probably wondering why the mop headed traitor you trusted didn’t do what he said he would do and actually see this catastrophe through.  If you’re a remain voter you’re probably laughing at the Tory in fighting and don’t care about the details.  Trust me though, this is one of the most astonishing stories to emerge from this whole mess. In place of Boris Johnson is a man who has engineered one of the most breathtakingly brutal political plots since the fall of the Byzantine Empire.  Reading about it, finding out just how duplicitous and destructive this fish lipped narcissist’s schemes were, I am a little stunned.  Boris Johnson is an irresponsible, lying turd but Michael Gove may actually be the devil.

For those with no interest in the breeding practises of birds (so most of you); some breeds of cuckoos raise their young by laying their eggs in other bird’s nests.  Birds, not being the brightest of beings, often don’t quite notice that their clutch has changed so dramatically and proceed to nurture the things, then the cuckoo chick destroys all the other eggs before they hatch and reaps the rewards of being an only child for a while until it leaves its surrogate parents forever.  This ‘Cuckoo nest plot’ has the perfect name.

Gove must have been planning to stab Johnson, his friend of twenty years, in the back before the campaigns got underway.  He may even have planned it from the moment Cameron declared there would be a referendum, so calculating were his actions.  The Gods alone know where the seed of his evil began but they started to sprout during a dinner party at Boris Johnson’s house.  It is well known that before the referendum Johnson was vocally in favour of the European Union but, during a dinner party with his old friend Gove, he was convinced to cross the divide and campaign to leave.  Don’t get me wrong; Johnson made a calculated political manoeuvre and gambled the future of the country for his own selfish ends but Gove was his enabler.  This in no way absolves Johnson of guilt, of course.  Gove, in contrast, has always been a Eurosceptic, men of his lack-of-calibre tend to be.  This is his one saving grace; the consistency of his callousness.

So, armed with the backing of another cabinet minister and a vacuum at the head of the leave campaign to fill, Johnson stunned Cameron and the country to announce he would be campaigning for Brexit.  Well we all know how that turned out.

The second step in Johnson’s myopic master plan was to win the Conservative leadership contest.  His plan was simple; he would use his position as leader of the leave campaign to unite both the remainers and the Eurosceptic wing of his party and take a fresh, revitalised Tory bloc in to the next election.  The problem was that he won, and now the old guard loathed him with a seething, unexpected passion.  It wouldn’t matter though, he would still have enough support unless there was some unforeseen problem, he and Gove had enough allies between them to easily secure the future of the party and Gove had never had any pretentions to leadership.  He had said as much, repeatedly and at a loud volume.

There was, however, the problem of Brexit to contend with, he would have to spell out a clear, coherent vision for that swiftly in order to seize the initiative in a now freewheeling conservative party.  Cameron had gone and the entire country was languishing, all he had to do was make sure everyone knew he had a plan.  He penned an article for the Telegraph and had Gove check over it.  It was perfect for Gove; an obscene abrogation of absolutely every promise and hint their campaign had made, so he finessed it to make sure it came across as even more bewildered and useless than it already was.  It was a fantasy list of unachievable hopes that nobody in the European Union could ever accept.  No free movement of labour but access to the single market.  If he had carried those pledges in to Brussels he would have been laughed out of Belgium, and rightly so.

After that he was done, but it was possible he didn’t know it.  Gove and his wife continued their blitz against his hopes.  To tee it up his wife, Ms Vine, ‘accidentally’ sent an email to a member of the public which was supposed to go to her husband.  This public spirited, anonymous individual who almost certainly doesn’t exist and is a journalist, leaked it to sky news.  It painted a picture of an indecisive government in waiting and a Gove rightly troubled by the goings on in camp Boris, extolling in him the need for ‘SPECIFIC assurances from Boris OTHERWISE you cannot guarantee your support.’

By now Johnson’s bid was looking less like a smooth transition and more like a blundering mess.  If the party couldn’t get this right at a time like this then the government could fall, haemorrhaging Tory voters to UKIP and Labour and costing them their tiny majority.  Never mind the chaos in the Labour party, half of the country now loathed them.

It was time to act and Johnson was becoming increasingly frantic.  First he met with Andrea Leadsom to try to convince her to withdraw her leadership bid and, by all accounts, succeeded.  She would throw her support behind him in the coming contest and it could well be enough to secure his leadership.  He sent out invitations to his launch event, best to make it official and quickly.

The morning after the Conservative party summer ball (because of course Tories have one of those) Gove struck.  He had told as many people as he could, presumably, all sorts of horror stories about the dithering and meandering of Boris the botch, the overgrown schoolboy who would burn the country down if he could be king of the ashes.  By the time the sun reached its zenith the work was done, no longer was Johnson a brief spark of the old order of the conservative party, he was a babbling schoolboy blundering from one position to another.

It was enough.  Gove was Johnson’s closest political ally and friend of twenty years, who wouldn’t believe that his concerns were genuine?  It was self-evident that the next leader of the Tories had to be a Brexiter and if not Johnson it would have to be Gove.

So the next day we were treated to one of the most flagrant assaults in the rear with a bladed weapon since Caesar.  Gove announced his candidacy and, by all accounts, told Theresa May in advance and said nothing to Johnson.  By mid-morning Johnson’s support was all but gone to Gove, his ‘dream team’ partner had taken up arms against him and he had a press conference organised for that afternoon.  Surveying the devastation around him he stepped up to the podium, mop hair ruffled and looking as dumbstruck and distraught as he had the morning his great ‘victory’ in the referendum was announced, and he told the stunned crowd that he would not be standing in the leadership contest.

Now I understand if, after that, you might feel a flicker of emotion for the shell of Johnson’s career.  It’s human to want to pity a man subject to such a colossal betrayal, but never forget: the man has probably destroyed the country in order to fulfil his sad little ego trip.  As for Gove?  Well, it looks like some things are beyond the pale even for a party that tends to celebrate a well-executed scheme no matter how evil.  Gove is trailing badly, yesterday’s man, losing support from MPs who see his actions, as they would repugnantly put it, as ‘not cricket.’  The good news is that we won’t see a Gove or Johnson Prime Ministership, the bad news is that we are likely instead to get a woman who campaigned to stay and has always, throughout her entire political career, been a Eurosceptic.

This is a time of lies in our political circles.  A time of grinning through causes they don’t believe in to position themselves better for the future.  Corbyn wanted to leave but campaigned to stay, Johnson wanted to stay but campaigned to leave, May wanted to leave but campaigned to stay and not a single member of our political establishment has managed to tell a single truth from the beginning of this free-wheeling disaster.  A plague on all their houses, and remember that Gove is the most callous of all.

Brexshit.

europe-burning_1    Okay, I need to write something comprehensive about this disaster and I couldn’t figure out how to do it.  Partly because it’s incredibly complex but mostly because this entire country has gone insane and nobody can figure out what’s happening or how the hell to get out of this mess.  Honestly I would only be a little bit surprised if, by the time I publish this, the Queen had dissolved parliament and was directly ruling the country for a bit while our political parties found a way to stop exploding.

  If you’re apolitical or coming to this blog from another part of the world you’re probably looking for answers.  I am going to try to explain this one bit at a time because there’s no other way to do it without writing a novel.

  The Right Wing Press.

  For thirty years or so almost all of the newspapers in this country, which are effectively owned by a Machiavellian old right wing Australian and a few tax exiles, have demonised and rubbished the EU.  They have given the impression that it’s an undemocratic, bloated empire and we have somehow surrendered to it.  This isn’t true but economics is complicated and pouring money in to poor areas doesn’t create headlines that can sell newspapers on slow news days.  The unelected media barons have done a very good job of blaming the EU for all the problems their right wing friends in government have created, more recently they decided to blame refugees as well.  Their lies have played an enormous role in shaping public opinion and stoking racism and the leave campaigns were happy to run with it.  They don’t care, they are happy to tell people that division is strength, hatred is unity and our friends and allies are our enemies.  They are the scum of the earth.

  The Poor ‘Leave’ Voters.

  The overwhelming majority of people who voted to leave are neither racist nor stupid nor xenophobic.  They are the poor and disenfranchised.  In the North East of England, for instance, the leave campaign won with enormous majorities because those areas of the country have been ignored, marginalised and ruined by years of successive governments.  I’m not saying the people there didn’t want to leave, I’m saying that they quite reasonably saw the political parties of Westminster and the bureaucrats in Brussels as a bunch of establishment tossers that either sees them as an electoral resource or couldn’t give a toss about them depending how far away the next election is.  They aren’t wrong.

  The Defrauded ‘Leave’ Voters.

  The leave campaigns, both of them, have now admitted that their two key promises were lies.  They said they would have an extra £350 million per week to give to the NHS in the event of Brexit, which was an outright lie.  They also said they would be able to reduce immigration because the EU has imposed the free movement of labour on the UK, but there’s no way we can get out of that for various complicated reasons to do with trade agreements which I won’t bore you with here.  Nothing these people thought they were voting for was what they were actually voting for.  They were lied to.  When a political party backtracks on its manifesto pledges they can be punished for it at the next election, when it is a once in a lifetime referendum the voters have been defrauded forever.  Many of these people are the ones displaying ‘buyer’s remorse’ now, and getting quite animated at the con they’ve been subjected to.

  The Racist ‘Leave’ Voters.

  There are more of them than the right wing acknowledges and there are less of them than the left wing feared.  There are still far too many of these noisy pricks juddering around and making everything worse.  They’ve been emboldened by the result and the tone of the two leave campaigns so now, to reign them in, you now have a responsibility to confront them in public.  I know it’s the English way to keep your head down and avoid making a fuss but that has to change.  The racists need to be stopped and you have to do it or we all have to live with these shits forever.  Fuck them and the horse they rode in on.

  The ‘Remain’ Voters.

  ‘I dunno, it’s not perfect but it’s better than the alternative I suppose.’

  The European Nationals Who Already Live Here.

  I am so sorry.  You won’t have to move back to your birthplace but if you decide to I absolutely won’t blame you.  Britain is now a frightening place to live thanks to our useless or irresponsible politicians invoking blood-and-soil nationalism in their squalid games.

  The Campaigns.

  There were four of them in a referendum with two possible outcomes, just to give you an idea of how stupid and feckless this whole exercise was.  A breakdown of each follows.

  David Cameron’s Remain Campaign.

  Leader: David Cameron, an irresponsible pig fucker.

  This campaign trotted out a coalition of bankers and business leaders because they apparently didn’t realise the British people hate them more than anyone else.  Then they threatened people with an emergency budget of even more cuts.  They failed to take the leave campaigns to task for anything they said at any point and never said anything positive about the EU.  They were as dismal and worthless as their counterparts were dishonest and vile.

  Boris Johnson’s Leave Campaign.

  Leader: Boris Johnson, an even more irresponsible careerist, scheming liar and probably also a pig fucker.  He has always been in favour of Britain remaining in the EU and only joined the leave campaign because he thought it would lose and it would help him shore up support in the right of his party in a coming leadership bid.  His power play might have destroyed the United Kingdom.  He knew the risks and he did it anyway.

  This campaign tried to make a fiscal argument for leaving the EU and in order to do so lied through their teeth at every turn.  They rode around in a big bus telling people that the UK spends £350 million per week on the EU and if we left we could instead spend it on the NHS.  The day after the referendum, in fact it may have even been in the morning, they said that would not be possible.  This was not the only lie they told but it was the most glaring and, the history books will say, infamous.  They also promised tighter control of our borders without once saying that in order to retain any kind of trade agreement with Europe we would have to accept free movement of labour anyway.  It probably turned the tide in this referendum and it was, basically all of it, lies.

  Jeremy Corbyn’s Remain Campaign.

  Leader: Jeremy Corbyn, a lovely waffling university lecturer who is incapable of running an effective campaign.  He has famously been vocally in favour of Britain leaving the EU for the last 35 years.  He should not have been in charge of running a campaign for a cause he was passionately opposed to.

  This campaign did nothing of note and part of the reason for that is that the Tories were pulling themselves apart and Labour thought they could make political gains by sitting back and letting it happen.  It was tepid to the point of vapour, failing to speak up for workers or their rights, failing to hold the racism of the fourth campaign to account.  Their complicity and incompetence is as important a factor as everything else and they have brought shame to the Labour party.

  Nigel Farage’s Leave Campaign.

  Leader: Nigel Farage, a disgusting fascist shit smear and criminally narcissistic prick.

  This campaign gleefully invoked the worst aspects of nationalism, racism and nativism in order to win.  It was nominally associated with UKIP, a racist far right party that has somehow managed to convince people it isn’t and that its leader’s previous links with the openly fascist National Front and the implicitly fascist BNP were some sort of youthful high jinks.  They ran a racist campaign with a heavy focus on the dangers of immigration, introducing a poster so vile and race baiting that some people from the other campaigns were finally forced to offer some quiet mutters of disapproval without committing themselves to taking a stand or risking whatever shredded remains of their careers might be left.  At this point in the campaign the fact that nobody from either leave campaign quit or swapped sides tells you that they were either okay with the tone of the campaigns or didn’t understand what was happening.  They’re either completely incompetent or okay with implicitly propping up racism, neither of which are remotely acceptable in western society.  They cannot be allowed any role in shaping our society.

  I know I am often hyperbolic, I know I am often angry, but please understand; this is a worse national crisis than Suez.  It is by far the worst national crisis in my lifetime and it’s certainly not going away soon.  Forget about a quick and easy solution to this, our political parties have no leadership, it’s unclear where the borders of our state actually are and our society is now so deeply polarised and poisoned that I can’t even put it in to words.  It’s frightening, this depth of division is how civil wars start and unless the feckless crowd of bumbling gobshites in Westminster sort themselves out now there are going to be bodies in the streets.  This isn’t exaggeration, there’s been an increase in racist attacks, the economy is collapsing, the mood when you step outside your door feels like hidden knives and nobody trusts each other.  This is Weimar Republic Britain and there’s no end in sight.

  This was an abject, irresponsible failure and the whole thing only happened in the first place because a couple of overgrown schoolboys wanted to one up each other.  The scale of their arrogance, the madness of invoking article 50, the refusal of an opposition leader in whom nobody but his weird cult of personality has any faith to resign, the certainty of a general election which is likely to result in an effective rerun of the referendum and the screaming of the tiny minority of racists who revel in this violence mean that we’re stuck in limbo and I don’t even know what shape this country is any more.  I haven’t even mentioned the looming threat of resurgent Irish republican violence, which is absolutely going to happen again now no matter what, and that’s partly because our political leaders didn’t either.  Can you imagine that?  The IRA are, if we invoke article 50 and leave the UK, going to rearm and start bombing England again almost immediately.  It was very obvious that this would happen in the event of Brexit and yet nobody in the political establishment brought it up.  That includes Jeremy Corbyn, the one person I had thought would at least try to run a respectable campaign.

  There’s no way out.  Everybody involved in this has been shit except most of the voters on both sides.  Today my MP resigned from the front bench and some of Momentum, the cult of personality/supporters of her party leader, posted some of the most disgusting things I’ve ever read about her recent treatment for breast cancer on to her twitter feed.  Fuck Momentum, fuck the Tories, fuck Jeremy Corbyn, fuck David Cameron, fuck Michael Gove, fuck Douglas Carswell, fuck Liam Fox and especially fuck UKIP, Boris Johnson and Nigel Farage.

An open letter to the Sun, The Daily Mail, UKIP, Boris Johnson et al.

Anti-nazi   You lying heap of vacuous cryptofascist shits need to take a long, hard look at yourselves. Yes, I know, the left wing media has effectively given up and scampered away to some dark corner and allowed you to blather as much racist bollocks as you like for years but that has to end now. Right now.

  It’s not okay to talk about ‘waves’ or ‘hordes’ of immigrants coming in to the country, it’s racist. It’s not okay to make up lies or publish context free stories about immigrants being put up in mansions while UK citizens sleep rough, it’s racist. It’s not okay to blame immigration for the financial crisis when it’s the fault of the bankers and tax dodgers that own you, it’s fucking irresponsible and racist.

  It’s not okay to pretend the right wing extremist terrorist who assassinated a left wing MP in the hopes of influencing the EU referendum was a ‘loner’ or just mentally ill, he chose her on purpose and he did it to make a point. An awful, racist point that many of you bastards have been preaching for years.

  It’s not okay not to examine the way you carry on, demonising foreigners and turning this country in to a nation of curtain twitching nimby pricks and feigning innocence when violence breaks out as a result. It’s not okay to mutter something about not politicising a tragedy when it was a political killing carried out by a self described political activist.

  It’s not okay to put up huge posters saying ‘breaking point’ on a picture of a mass of people who “coincidentally” aren’t white. It’s not okay to build a political party on a base of ex BNP filth and National Front nutters and pretend it’s mainstream. It’s not okay to lie and lie and lie about the malign influence of foreign powers and constantly talk in combative terms and be surprised when someone gets hurt. It’s not okay to carry on as before, stoking up racism so your self interested tax dodging owners can pocket another few hundred million. It’s not okay to talk like this happened in a vacuum. It’s not okay to pretend you’re making things better.

  Look at what you’ve done. Look at what you’ve done to us. Open your eyes and look.

Urgh… The EU Referendum and the Mountain of Lies.

EUflag  Okay, look, this is just stupid. We’ve got people on both sides of this acrimonious divide screaming lies at one another and generally making things up, we’ve got racists getting agitated and a focus on immigration that’s making this country a worse place to live. What the hell are we supposed to think? Are we supposed to argue about the Schengen agreement or try to tell everyone the history of the Maastricht treaty? This is the route most remain voters and campaigners seem to be taking and it’s doing no good.

  The problem is that the leave campaign has an emotive message and the remain campaign does not. Saying ‘our country is broken because of immigration and foreign interference’ resonates far more than ‘yes the EU is imperfect but it’s better to be on the inside than the outside because the benefits it brings far outweigh the risk of leaving.’

  The truth is the EU is a mess. It’s a mountain of bureaucracy which occasionally makes some terrible decisions and its secretive, undemocratic incompetence makes it difficult to defend. Add that to a generation of hostile right wing press and we have a general ambivalence towards the EU that seems insurmountable.

  Perhaps the distaste began in Sarajevo. Perhaps the failure of the EU to get its act together and actually do anything about the disgusting war crimes being carried out in its back garden began the slow slide. I don’t think so though. I don’t think most people in Britain know anything at all about the EU, what it does, how it works, its history, its purpose… anything. All we ever hear from the press and politicians is how awful the whole thing is and how bureaucrats from Brussels are ruining our way of life. It’s a joke, a failure of the press that weighs on us now.

  So what can be said? What positive messages can we reduce to sound bites in order to convince wavering voters that remaining in the EU is a good idea?

  Well for starters we could remind them that the member states of the EU are our friends and allies, not some international coalition of somehow anti-British plotters. Spain is our friend, as is France and Germany, and the rhetoric of the Brexit campaigners is the turgid mutterings of pre-war nationalist thinking.

  We could remind them that land wars in Europe have barely happened while it exists. I’m not suggesting, as the prime minister has, that a continent wide conflict would be the inevitable result of Brexit but if you think the prejudices and discontent that precipitated two world wars have somehow gone away then you just need to have a quick look at some of the darker corners of the internet. I don’t want to be drafted in to a conflict that would end in nuclear annihilation anyway, do you?

  Talking about the working time directive or the increase in food standards or the cleanliness of our beaches doesn’t seem to be doing much good. I’m mainly voting to remain part of the EU because I don’t trust the political establishment in this country to govern fairly without the checks and balances the EU provides. Do you really want to see Prime Minister Boris Johnson enacting legislation with nobody to stop him? The only people who would have any way to block his choices would be the House of Lords or the Queen, do you want to live in a country where they, inevitably, have greater power? Do you want to live in an even less democratic society?

  For all its faults, and they are many, we are better in the EU than out. It, like all governments, does some good things and some bad, but our political establishment are chomping at the muzzle, clawing at power they cannot be allowed to have.