Friday, 22 March 2019

The Guardian: Oh, So Cruel

This callous juxtaposition is surely going a bit too far ...

She's trying her best!


Thursday, 21 March 2019

Illuminated by Flashes of Artillery

As the inevitable constitutional crisis starts to develop in earnest and battle is joined, several intriguing possibilities emerge:  seen as it were in silhouette, against the backdrop of flashes of artillery as the night-attack commences.  Who knows what the details will be when sun rises over the battlefield? 
  • Tusk seems to be saying there will only be an extension if Parliament has first passed May's Deal.  Not sure if he has the authority to pronounce on that: but it'd be a pretty remarkable result for Selmayr/May (and would surely pass Bercow's test - if indeed that needs doing).  Almost as if there is some choreography ...
  • Could the EC really add further conditions to an extension?  Well of course they could in terms of their limitless willingness to play silly-buggers: but in practical terms if they chuck in too much by way of conditions (e.g. R2) they can't be at all sure what the response / outcome will be 
  • There is only one 'unilateral' action** left for anyone on the UK side to take: revocation of A50.  Contriving a vote on this must be seriously attractive for Bercow in his bid for posterity, and I guess it will happen in the remaining days before 29th March (pardon the pun)   
  • Knackered old Corbyn again pipes up with his plea for a GE.  I'd previously assumed there was no realistic chance of that.  But seeing Grieve in full spate yesterday (and what a piece of work he is) I start to think the latter might actually prefer Corbyn-as-PM to Brexit, and that a No Confidence vote might see some Tories on that side.  (Does Grieve know that Corbyn recently said he'd vote for Brexit + Customs Union?)  The thing is, I reckon there would be even more Labour MPs who see things the other way around
  • Just what is the state of readiness for a 29th March crashout?  On the UK side it is culpably poorer than it should have been (for which I blame Hammond as much as May): but it ain't zero.  There is an interesting possibility of crashout followed by Not Very Much, Initially - a phoney war, if you will, similar to 1939.  Rather like how nothing much happened the day after R1 (aside from Cameron quitting, of course).  And NVMI might have the effect of making some important players think: hmm, this No Deal isn't as bad as it's been painted.   Of course, it wouldn't guarantee the ship stayed on an even keel indefinitely.  And it may not even be NVMI at all.  But if it were ... it might change the political dynamics quite a lot.    
But, hey: flashes of artillery at night are not an ideal form of illumination.  Especially when the senses are reeling from the noise of it all.

** I feel I've read somewhere that even this comes with qualifications

Tuesday, 19 March 2019


"several leave-supporting MPs said they had been reassured that May’s intention was still to push ahead with Brexit as rapidly as possible and that she would only accept a longer extension if forced into it by Brussels" 
Errr, yes. The whole story of May as 'negotiator', from the 2016 Hinkley fiasco to the present time, and for so long as she's in place.  

Meanwhile, preparations for the hard border in Ireland are well underway in case we do indeed crash out with No Deal ...


Monday, 18 March 2019

Meaningful Vote 3 - Vote Harder

Even as a political obsessive, I am pretty bored of Brexit. If the news comes on the gogglebox I quickly switch over as it is all too much to bear, the grinning, cretinous goons from Parliament making the same leave or remain case a full 3 years on from when the whole thing was decided by the people they are supposed to serve.

Ah, well. At least an end game of sorts is in sights? So for this week, this is my take on how things will go - hard to bet on how this will affect the market or betting companies though, so not much in it other than pride.

1) MV3 will happen, May has run out of road. I think she will even promise to quit on the back of it (what value a promise to a serial liar anyway?).

2) This won't be enough, it really does not need very many rebels on the Tory side and I think there will be more than 20, so plenty to make sure it just fails. 280 vs 340 or that kind of thing. Close but no Cigar.

3) For a brief minute, the rebel Leavers will think they have won the day, there will be small run on the pound and supermarkets will be happy to sell the gullible food supplies for the coming famine and pestilence.

4) Then parliament will see May get an extension for a few months from the EU, enough for MV4 and to prove once and for all that a) she is a big liar b) it really is her Brexit or no Brexit.

5) Now we will have another 3 months on interminably dull politics, rehearsing yet again the vote from 2016, whilst the rebels in the Tories and DUP decide whether it is May's Brexit or no Brexit.

So in many, frankly depressing ways, nothing will have changed, again. It will be nice to see who thinks differently in the comments. A pint for the winner in a pub near Parliament to be had...

Friday, 15 March 2019

Friday Light Relief: a Belly-Laugh from the SJWs

So over in the US of A, where they are sore afflicted by student lunacy of both the pitiful snowflake variety and the pernicious SJW kind, there is a 'liberal arts college' just north of New York City in Yonkers, NY called Sarah Lawrence College.  (I presume that good lady has long since spun herself clean out of her grave.)  Students are predominantly female (are we allowed to say that?), a legacy from the early days when it was founded as a women's college.  45 US States and 53 countries are represented in the student body.  From their website:
Its pedagogy ... a rigorous personalized approach to education, modeled on the tutorial system of Oxford University and the theories of educator and philosopher John Dewey. These educational strategies continue at Sarah Lawrence today ... Our students are men and women who share an enthusiasm for intellectual rigor
Right.   Well kindly don't blame Oxford for what's happening just now; and don't be too quick to claim 'intellectual rigor', either.  The SJWs there have assembled a long, long list of impossibilist (and deeply illiberal) demands in the name of the Diaspora Coalition, under the ringing slogan: If the College does not accept these demands, it will no longer be hailed as a progressive institution but instead remembered for its inability to truly embody its self-proclaimed progressive ideology and support all students against an international rising tide of white supremacy and fascism.
  • We demand a mandatory first-year orientation session about intellectual elitism and classism
  • We demand that the College offer classes that embody intersectionality, as defined by KimberlĂ© Williams Crenshaw, and address the racial diversity of the LGBTQ+ community instead of centering whiteness 
And so it goes on, for 94 pages.  Have a laugh and read them all in a quiet moment, it's awful and highly predictable stuff  -  or, just possibly, satire and spoof, but I doubt it.  Rigor?  Rigor mortis, more like.  But it is all made worthwhile by the following cri de coeur, nestling incongruously amongst the blood-curdling sub-Maoist drivel and rant:
All campus laundry rooms are to supply laundry detergent and softener on a consistent basis for all students, faculty and staff.
Hurrah!  Picture the scene: everyone is sitting cross-legged on the floor, taking it in turns to denounce President Cristle Collins Judd (sic) as a racist cisgender purveyor of actual harm to LGBTQI+'s of color everywhere ... when Angielou-Maybelle LaTrine declares for the fourteenth time:  err, sisters, what about the laundry detergent?  -  we should demand softener!  And it must be replenished every week.  And it must be Fragrant RosePetal fragrance.  Every time!  Not just whatever the drugstore has on discount.  Sisters?  Sisters ..?

OK honey, yeah, whatever.  We'll include the detergent, yeah ... yes, and the softener, OK?  Now, about those facist m***********s ...