21st Century Wire
Top of the UK domestic newswires this weekend is the row between Michael Gove, the education secretary, and Theresa May, the Home secretary over the Islamization of certain schools in Birmingham.
Beneath the public bickering about who is to blame lies a far more serious issue.
There is now in Britain a sizeable and rapidly growing minority who reject the very principles of democracy, justice and equality we have all taken for granted and which are the basis of our way of life BBC television’s flagship Newsnight current affairs programme interviewed one such individual who, when pressed, refused to condemn amputation for thieves, stoning for adulterers and execution for homosexuals. Since the last Labour government, in a calculated move designed to forever change Britain’s racial composition, are directly responsible for this state of affairs, having openly admitted their wish to change Britain forever, can those responsible not be arrested and charged with treason?
This must have been the most depressing Queen’s speech in history. Gone is the notion that an Englishman’s home is his castle, for it is a claim that belongs in the history books. In a huge boost for fracking, the coalition government plan legislation that will allow fracking under private property without the Owner’s permission. Anyone vague idea anyone might have been clinging to that this was to be the ‘greenest government ever’ can forget it. Together with the further stripping away of planning regulations its a headlong rush to iconoclastic vandalism. The antithesis of true conservatism. What puzzles me is this. What on earth do the conservative ( with a small c) folk who vote Conservative make of vandalism on such an epic scale? Much of the fracking is scheduled to take place in the south east of England – Conservative heartlands and home to the ‘clip your hedge and mind you own business’ types that have shored up the Tory party for decades. This extremely short sighted policy can only end one way for the Tories. Badly. It may yet turn out to be this administration’s Poll Tax. Let’s hope so.
The fact that the full correspondence between George W.Bush and Tony Blair in the run-up to the Iraq War will not now be published in full as part of the Chilcot Inquiry into why the war started in the first place came as a surprise to no one. The British Establishment always looks after its own and there is no way a loyal servant of the deep state like Tony Blair would be hung out to dry, or else how could future apparatchiks be goaded into unswerving loyalty ? While of course it is also possible that the Americans did not want Dubya’s half witted conversational or written prose to be exposed to the world’s glare, I suspect that another reason why this redaction was cooked up is because their interactions may refer to additional third parties – the unelected individuals and bodies who pull the strings from behind the scenes and pull the strings on marionettes like Dubya and Blair. This would have sent shock waves through parliament and the liberal, know-all commentariat and laid bare the shadow government. We can’t have that now, can we?At least we have the World Cup to enjoy at last. The Brazilians are bitterly divided about the whole enterprise and understandably so. Vast sums of money have been spent on grandiose stadia and infrastructure, much of which will not actually be completed on time, while much of the country remains in abject poverty and lawlessness abounds. The International Business Times details ways in which the Tournament may be a disaster, with a transport strike in Sao Paulo – host of the opening match – and ongoing protests just two of eight, and counting.
Worryingly, the temporary seating in the Sao Paulo stadium will not actually be tested at capacity until the opening game itself. If we can bring ourselves to focus on the Football, then its worth remembering that current World Champions Spain have kept ten clean sheets in their last ten matches in the knockout phases of the last three major tournaments – an extraordinary record. Their brand of keep-ball Football will have opponents running around in the heat and I see no reason why they shouldn’t triumph again. The hosts will be under enormous pressure to achieve miracles and this vintage of Brazil is not blessed with the same array of talent as previous versions. Argentina possess the best forward line of all the countries competing, and since the team winning the World Cup and the individual scoring the most goals are rarely of the same nationality, try a small wager on Gonzalo Higuain or Sergio Aguero to be the top scorer while Spain lift the trophy.
While enjoying the Football we can also enjoy watching the bloated plutocrats of FIFA squirm as further details emerge of the skullduggery involved in awarding the 2022 tournament to Qatar. FIFA is a totally discredited quango whose Byzantine inner workings border on farce. They are on the hook over the plans to hold the biggest soccer tournament in the world in a medieval potentate little bigger than the island of Corsica and not just because of a corrupt bidding process. It is simply too hot to hold the World Cup at its usual place in the calender, mid June through to mid July, in Qatar where it may be up to 50 celcius, or 140 degrees Fahrenheit in the sun. On the other hand, the major European leagues who provide most of the players refuse to have their seasons shredded by moving it to the milder winter.
Some in the ‘football family’ as Sepp Blatter likes to call it, are desperately hoping Qatar are thrown out so it can be awarded instead to a location where it can actually be played!