A headline in the Daily Mirror today quotes arch-Tory CUNT (Conservative & Unionist? No Thanks!) and huge landowner, the former agriculture minister Owen Paterson, as proposing that British pensioners should take the place of Romanian and other EU workers as seasonal fruit-pickers, on less-than minimum wage.
Paterson denies the story, which originally appeared in a memoir by David Laws, a discredited Liberal politician who formerly had a ministerial post in the coalition government. Paterson says the cabinet looked at all sorts of ideas to replace the former controlled scheme whereby 20,000 seasonal migrants were allowed in to work as cheap labour on farms, which ended in January 2014 when Bulgaria and Romania became full members of the EU.
Laws describes Paterson’s suggestion as being received in cabinet with stunned silence.
Go ahead, vote to leave the EU.
This is the kind of demented shitbrains you will effectively be voting to become trapped with as the leaders of HM Prison Britain, for the foreseeable future.
Be warned, there are others.
The Mayor of London, bless him, Boris Johnson, manages to make the headlines twice a week with his inane comments on Europe. Why anyone thinks his view that leaving the EU would be a ‘win-win’ situation for Britain is actually news, I have no idea. It’s the sort of crass slogan anyone might parrot, wouldn’t they, as a prominent member of the conspiracy of ‘Outers’, unreconstructed rightwing Tories and Empire loyalists for whom ‘regaining our national sovereignty’ is code for them seizing and remaining in power for a generation.
Mr Johnson’s shambolic appearance – those baggy suits, that Donald J Trump memorial hairdo – the Latin quotes and the diffident, semi-apologetic, bumbling air he adopts… make no mistake, behind the myth of ‘BoJo’ as he departs the mayoralty lies a steely ambition.
He only joined the ‘Outers’ because he knows it will gain him many Brownie points with the Eurosceptic tendency of the party, who will welcome him win or lose at September’s party conference with wild approbation and, who knows, a vote for the leadership; especially once Cameron and Osborne have lost the referendum and miserably climbed down in the face of defeat, their fate compounded by disappointing trade and borrowing figures: growth slowing (it already is), and the pound getting rockier, as investors discount the inevitable Brexit.
Meanwhile, I am ashamed to find Mr Blair crawling into bed with me on the EU referendum. He obviously reads this, muh li’l bogl, as he too is now beginning to wonder why it is that the news media have been so entirely unable to find a single spokesperson for the ‘Remain’ campaign who speaks about our historic place and role in Europe with any flair or passion.
But why would they? Few people seem aware, either that there is to be a referendum on 23 June, or even that we are a member of the EU.
During the Napoleonic wars, Hartlepool folk achieved fame, also pity, after stringing-up an escaped monkey, believing it to be a French spy. It had not occurred to them that espionage requires a command of language. The mere fact that it spoke no Hartlepudlian was enough.
Reporting from there, BBC journo Sima Kotecha was yesterday unable to find a single monkey in the streets and cafes with any sort of view, let alone a coherent one, on whether we should stay in the EU or leave. One young person had never heard of the EU. Several other young persons she spoke to hadn’t heard there was to be a referendum and wouldn’t vote anyway as they had no idea what it was about. Except one, a waitress who thinks British people would stand a better chance of getting a job without all them foreigners coming in.
But hang about, hen. Tha’ve gorra job, what are thee on about?
So to point out that there are more people in work and more job vacancies than ever before with no-one to fill them and the lowest unemployment figures for decades and employers desperate to find anyone with a GCSE would cut no ice with her – or with the Archbishop of Canterbury, who finds British xenophobia perfectly acceptable as long as we don’t actually call it racism.
And then there is the antediluvian fogey Jacob Rees-Mogg: a political Young Turk reeking of incense and Victorian principles. He would be funny if he wasn’t.
I question whether Citizen Mogg ought to be allowed to sit on Parliamentary committees, if he is going to tell the Governor of the Bank of England that he, Mr Mogg, knows more about finance than Mr Carney does, and that he should not be allowed to report the findings of the Bank’s economists, that the economy would do less well out of, than in, the EU, because that is expressing an anti-anti-European opinion and he should not be presenting the Bank’s opinions; only facts (in economics? Facts? lol).
Presumably it would not have been an opinion were Mr Carney to have suggested instead that we would be much better off floundering in mid-Atlantic, far from the reek of garlic, while Mogg and his ilk get on with the ruling business for which they were specially bred.
The censorious hypocrisy of these grotesque High-Tory isolationists is, frankly, an insult to democracy.
Only an opinion, mind.
Q. Why does The Sun newspaper ‘stand by’ its story that the Queen told Nick Clegg five years ago that she wanted Britain to quit the EU, which both parties have denied?
A. Because they made it up.
Going nowhere slowly
Once again I find myself fulminating over the travel trade and its online information services.
Q. Why is it so nearly impossible to book travel arrangements online?
A. Because of the colossal idiocy and general gross insensitivity to human frailty of the travel-industry database design-baboons, possibly.
All the airlines and the flight-finders and the airport websites refuse to give you any flight information, departure times and prices, unless and until you can tell them exactly what day and takeoff and arrival times and from which airport and on what airline or train and stations combination you wish to avail yourself of before you book.
In other words, until you give them the information you are searching for IN ADVANCE of you knowing it!!!
Just pack. Go. What can they do?
By some supreme irony, the Talent website (it used to be called SML Recruitment, until this mad market repositioning idea occurred to the owner over several glasses of well-chilled Chardonnay) has just emailed me, to let me know there is a job going in a well-heeled part of London, for a ‘switched-on PA’.
I’m not sure I think so, to be honest. Judging by my competence with travel arrangements!
Goodbye then Sir Peter Maxwell-Davies, 81 – Mad ‘Max’, Master of the Queen’s Musicke.
You have been described as the ‘wild-child’ of music, although frankly I prefer the old experimental stuff. Your later Scottish airs sound derivative: trite, repetitious and glum. One wonders if perhaps being patronised by Her Majesty forced you to compose that sort of BBC Light Programme fare for her sojourns in the Highlands, nibbling on shortbread biscuits and thrilling to hairy-kneed men tossing cabers.
But it is beginning to look, for the original cohort of ’60s celebrities, isn’t it, as though the Grim Reaper has acquired a combine harvester.
And thus, farewell too, Keith Emerson (71), late of Emerson, Lake and Palmer, rock ‘n’ roll musicians. Felo de se, at home in Santa Monica; as some people must be.
To be honest, I knew little about you, except you were the keyboards man. A whizz through your discography suggests that as a prog rock band that made its debut single in 1970, despite having worked in Top 40 radio stations I never heard of a single hit record you made; none of the titles in your extensive discography rings any bells, yet somehow your names, sounding like a firm of solicitors, were always there in the background.
Perhaps, as your critics point out, the fact that none of your tracks lasted less than half an hour, while usually paying homage to some C19th classical composer’s best-known work, could have accounted for your lack of chart success.
But success isn’t everything, as I have learned.