Happy Birthday BogPo
Congratulations on our 500th Post. The first mindbogls.plc ‘The Boglington Post’ Post was Posted on this day, 27th February, four years ago. In that time the BogPo team has covered many subjects, breaking stories, extended whinges and mindblowingly prescient Comment pieces amounting to, ooh, well over half a million words of scintillation and amaze.
We would like therefore to remind all our Followers, Likers and Spammers that we haven’t charged you a penny for all our efforts to keep you entertained and informed. Yet we are having to pay men to come help renovate our kitchen. There is definitely something broken in our society when we have to say that.
THANKS A BUNCH.
(I was about to add YOU GUYS, but that would have broken one of my New Year’s resolutions.)
Calling in the receivers
Since the posters and banners began appearing everywhere to alert us to the imminent closure of our only local omni-DIY store – the next one being 37 miles away – unless you count Cheap Charlie’s little Aladdin’s Cave, where you can’t park but you can buy anything from some pretty unfashionable outdoor clothing to a tube of glue or a power-drill, but not the big stuff; you couldn’t embark on a kitchen refurbishment, or re-fence your garden, for instance – B&Q has been jammed to the rafters with all the refuseniks who couldn’t bring themselves to shop there before, scrambling for possible bargains.
All the staff who were never there when you needed someone have emerged from the woodwork, as it were; many extras seem to have been imported for the occasion, and you can barely negotiate the aisles with your unsteerable flatbed trolley for orange-suited Guantanamo releasees restocking the high shelves from fork-lift trucks laden with extra sale-bargain, 25% Off! stuff. Hundreds of middle-aged husbands have rediscovered their pride in being able to put up shelves or hang ceiling paper and are reviving those long-abandoned refurbishment projects. (I just happen to be in the middle of one of mine.)
The actual final date of closure is nebulous: ‘the end of April’. ‘When we’ve sold everything’. You can even talk to the manager about acquiring the fixtures and fittings. It’s possible it may never happen. The assister who helps me to my car is upbeat: he has secured a transfer to a faraway branch where he can obtain a better qualification as a fork-lift truck driver.
That says it all, really, about our little town.
But it gives me hope for the EU referendum.
On the morning after he loses and the receivers take over the business, Mr Cameron will announce the closing-down sale of GB plc – henceforth Britain will be available only on-line.
Within minutes, all the people who couldn’t previously be bothered just because Europe was always there will start flocking to the Channel Tunnel and Heathrow airport, demanding in broken French to be let out before the iron gates clang shut for the last time and all the remaining unsold stock is shipped out to depotland. Sales of garlic, berets, bicycles, Johnny Halliday records and funny sausage will soar.
I predict, once we leave the EU we will all become much more European.
It’s only because we really were Europeans for a generation that the British were so grudging, nudging and fudging about all things Continental – bureaucracy (as if ours weren’t the most enthusiastic bureaucrats in Brussels), red tape, health and safety regulations, rude waiters, straight bananas, refugees – Spanish planning laws.
Unbeatable football teams.
We imagine, don’t we, that we can be more like our wartime allies, the Norwegians (except Peter Quisling of course), who aren’t in the EU but do okay on the margin. They may be suicidal, crepuscular alcoholics, but they always come out nearly t0p of the clever people league tables, have ruddy complexions and are allowed to ski heroically for miles with rifles strapped to their backs.
It hasn’t quite occurred to us, has it, that their prosperity is based on not squandering their North Sea oil resource on pointless wars in flyblown desert countries, refinancing bankrupt banks, financing large US tech corporations with huge tax subsidies or protecting a few monosyllabic anglophone shepherds and a postmistress from invasion by any passing brutal South American junta. This has enabled them to build up a huge financial balance they are now able to plunder to support their refugees.
Nor are they forced by national pride and the Scottish labour unions to commit to spending £100 million on scraping the barnacles off the bottoms of their nuclear submarine fleet every 20 years. Despite being hundreds of miles closer to the growling Russian bear, they have never felt the necessity to acquire a nuclear bomb.
I’m not sure what they would make of our charming habit of scattering empty lager cans, condoms and McDonalds wrappers over our urban landscape. Most people don’t know that Norway pays the EU money to have bilateral trade agreements and be part of the customs union, they just don’t get a say in how things are managed. Nor are most people aware that Norway has the same population as Wales, a quasi-autonomous British principality on the Celtic fringe almost entirely funded by the EU.
Not many people I suspect, could name a single successful global Norwegian company, historical figure – Amundsen? Roald Dahl? – idea or invention. As for their music, their computer games, their fashion, their film industry, their … Edvard Munch? Even tiny Wales scores more highly in the culture stakes, although neither country has successfully exported its tricky language to three-quarters of the globe.
Not to disparage Norway, it gives great fjords, but we had a lot to offer Europe, didn’t we?
And they appreciated it.
And now we’re about to walk out on them, out of some vague and unjustifiable feeling of superiority.
The words ‘rats’ and ‘ship’ spring to mind.
And lo! the dead arose and baulked
I’m delighted that Mr Ian Duncan-Smith, the failed former leader of the Tory party (no bald man has been voted into office as Prime Minister since Winston Churchill. Interestingly you can Google ‘bald Prime Ministers’ and get masses of helpful advice), has come out so assertively against his own, shinily coiffed leader and in favour of Britain leaving the EU.
As the architect, both of the failed policy to introduce a cut-price ‘universal benefit’ and of the disgusting policies to deprive disabled people of essential State supports while forcing as many of them to go to work as his private contractors can possibly justify on the grounds of their spurious tests (almost three thousand people declared fit for work by these charlatans, the children of Mengele, have inconveniently died within six months), so publicly loathed and reviled is this bland, arch-Tory cunt that his support for Brexit can only help to persuade waverers brainwashed by forty years of anti-European propaganda serving the interests of the hard-right that perhaps, after all, there might be something in this Europe business.
And will someone tell the Prime Minister that relentlessly campaigning to stay in the EU on the entirely negative and virtually meaningless slogan that to leave would be ‘a leap into the unknown’ is not helping?
Perhaps Sir Linton Crosby, the architect of that inexplicable Tory election win last May, could be pressed into service – or, if he is already in service, then out of it? Someone, me possibly, needs to tell Mr Cameron that the way to win is to show ordinary Britons that being second-class citizens in Europe is the inevitable corollary of making Ian Duncan-Smith a first-class shit in HM Prison Britain.
Q. Why does Donald Trump keep asking ‘What’s going on?’
A. Because he doesn’t know.
Ta-ra fer now!
– Uncle Bogler