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Politics Sport

Ireland 16 – New Zealand 9. A New Metaphor for Brexit.

God, we needed that.

For so many reasons we needed to beat New Zealand but not least, may I submit, as an antidote to all this Brexit bullshit we’ve been enduring for what seems like the last fifty years.

We needed our boys to make a statement on that field at Lansdowne Road — I will never use the A-word when referring to that place — and by Jesus they stood up and gave the world a big, loud message.

It’s over. We’re no longer satisfied with being second. We’re here and it’s time to get used to us.

Oddly, this is the same message we’ve sent out in regard to Brexit, to the utter incomprehension of the smug, superior Tory toffs who have been goading Britain over the cliff edge for the last two years. How ironic that this is  the centenary of the bloodbath when the Brexiteers’ antecedents goaded poor British people over the walls of the trenches in France and Belgium to be slaughtered.

Our message to them? Precisely the same: We’re here, it’s time to get used to us and no, we don’t do what you tell us. Ireland’s victory in rugby demonstrates a different kind of independence. A new, self-confident freedom that doesn’t rely on anyone else to define it and that doesn’t exist in opposition to anything.

New Zealand’s captain, Kieran Read, to his credit, came straight out after the game and said “They were better than us”. No bullshit. No messing around. Just a straight acknowledgement that a superior opponent prevailed on the day.

Jacob Rees-Mogg and Nigel Fromage, the cheesy con-man of Europe, on the other hand, trapped in a centuries-old bubble of incomprehension, aren’t quite able to process the ugly fact that the annoying neighbours refuse to do as they’re told, no matter how plummy the vowels one adopts.

Can you believe that Nadine Dorries (MP!!!) is today complaining that Theresa May’s deal with the EU means Britain will no longer have any MEPs or EU commissioners?

That is the  level of stupidity that exists within the British governing party.

Imagine leaving the EU and having no MEPs. Who’d have guessed?  That is the level of crass ignorance we have to endure every day in this country when we listen to the ruling party of our nearest neighbours and that is something we have finally decided to stop engaging with.

We have decided to move on, be the adults in the room and let the toddlers at the other end of the playschool slap each other. Let the parents take over. They’re not our problem.

Yes, they’ll leave a mess, but we’ve cleaned up messes before and we’ll get this place nice and tidy too, when the playschool management decide enough is enough and they’re no longer prepared to put up with ill-mannered brats.

There’s too much talk these days about existential issues. When I was a lad, existentialism was all about trying to look moody and interesting while reading French authors you didn’t really understand or enjoy. But these days, everyone likes to warn us about existential crises and I don’t like it. An existential crisis should involve being unshaven, wearing a vest and smoking a Gauloise. It should not be about countries collapsing.

Let me make a prediction, which as everyone knows, will probably be wrong, but why break the habit of a lifetime?

I predict that even if the Tories completely fuck up Brexit and crash out of the EU, we here in Ireland will be just fine after a bit of a bumpy ride.

Britain will try, disastrously, to trade on WTO rules, the only country in the world to do so.

They’ll quickly run out of Mars bars and mushy peas.

Spain will send all their train robbers back home.

Provence will eject all their authors manqué.

And then, after a few months of food riots, they’ll apply to rejoin an EU they didn’t understand in the first place, even though it was their idea.

They’ll be refused of course but we’ll welcome them into the new Irish Commonwealth, as long as they accept our rules. And they’ll have to wear a green shirt when they play New Zealand.

We’re decent like that.

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Politics

Brexit, the Christmas Panto

I’ve decided to resign as Brexit Secretary.

And yes, before you point it out, I realise I never had the job in the first place. It’s just that so many people are resigning from it, I was feeling a bit left out. Everyone else is doing it, so why can’t I?

It’s like those pointless interrogations you got from your parents when you did something stupid.

Why did you do that?

Tommy did it first.

Did he now? And if Tommy resigned from Theresa May’s cabinet, would you do the same?

It’s not easy to be serious about this Brexit nonsense. The neighbours are at it again and Ireland does its best not to twitch the curtains as they squabble, but it’s hard to muffle the sniggering at their antics. Don’t annoy them, though, or they’ll be back over here starting fights like they used to do in the past, and they’re no strangers to a punch-up. Best to just wave politely and compliment their mangy pit-bull when they kick over your wheelie-bin.

Nice doggie.

Who could ever understand the role of this Raab fellow in the latest debacle? As the Secretary for Keeping Johnny Foreigner Out, he seems a little conflicted, given that he himself is the son of a refugee fleeing persecution, but besides that, what exactly has he been doing all this time? Did he not know what his own officials were negotiating and agreeing? Where was he during all these talks?

Was the shock of discovering that Britain does quite a lot of trade with the EU a bit more than his delicate constitution could bear?

What happened? Did some Foreign Office functionary hand him a briefcase marked Top Secret Draft Agreement With Johnny Foreigner? And when he opened it, did a spring-loaded clown jump out and punch him on the nose?

Seriously. How is it possible to be the Secretary in charge of an agreement on Brexit and at precisely the same time, not know what’s in the fucking agreement your officials have drawn up after months of effort?

Why didn’t Dominic Raab resign weeks ago when he first got wind of this heinous betrayal of all he stands for? Oh, wait. Stop. He’s a Tory. There was a time when they used to stand for things – some of them pretty horrible things, but at least they were things. Ah, but that was long ago. That was before Boris invented bendy bananas. That was before Moggy named his sixth son Sixtus, nestled snugly, no doubt, between Quintus and Septimus. That was before a putrefying sack of medical waste somehow fermented, began to speak and became Nigel Farage.

Gah!

What a crowd of idiots these condescending, supercilious Tories are.

I urge my fellow Irish citizens not to be provoked by the patronising tone of people like Jacob Rees-Mogg. Let us rise above their jibes and their sneers and instead let us remember our countless friends among the ordinary British people who have nothing in common with Beano characters like Moggsy and Boris who stand to make billions from a collapse of the British economy.

Let us stand by our British friends and guarantee that if a no-deal Brexit goes ahead, we are ready to send those food parcels and those medical supplies.

We will accept refugees. We’ll pick them up in the sea, wrap them in tin-foil and feed them emergency rations of mushy peas.

We will not be found wanting.

And as for our Northern brethren, we won’t be bitter. Even when they travel to Dublin for a soccer match, waving a flag of the Parachute Regiment, we’ll rise above it.

We’ll feed them on confectionery of two kinds. We’ll offer them the cake they don’t want to have even though it’s better than the cake everyone else is getting because, you know the people of Ulster …

And if they don’t like that, we’ll offer them the cake of gay marriage.

Hold on. The Roman Catholic South must be dominated by gay-hating, anti-abortion religious extremists.

Isn’t  that right, Sammy?

Aye, Stratton. It is, surely.

Well, maybe not, boys but never mind.  We’ll find a pair of knickers for Sammy next time he goes wondering on a beach, sans culottes. We’re good like that.

Let me be honest with you. It would be a lie if I claimed we’re not enjoying a sense of schadenfreude at our neighbours’ discomfiture, but who wouldn’t? Suddenly, the UK has turned into the Jeremy Kyle show on a world stage and who doesn’t like watching dysfunctional families beating each other up on afternoon TV?

Come on. Brexit is even funnier than Trump and that’s not an easy act to pull off, but if Brexit is the panto, who’s the Dame? There’s no shortage of candidates, from Boris Johnson to Jacob Rees-Mogg, but I’ll tell you one thing. When the children shout Look out behind you, just hope you don’t turn around to find it’s Farage gurning at you while waving a pint of best British beer.

 

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Politics

Candidates, Clowns and Ambition — What Really Motivates Peter Casey?

In a fit of whimsy tonight, I fell to pondering on the origins of terms like ambition and candidate, two words that are very much to the front of our minds in recent years.

Naturally, of course, we can’t help thinking about the current clown show that we in Ireland laughingly refer to as a presidential contest, but let’s not forget the procession of dangerous buffoons cavorting in the Big Top of the world’s circus these days. Compared to these mountebanks, our own transitory pretenders might seem like nothing but shabby court jesters, fit for little but to free a blackbird from a pie or to wring a grudging scowl from some trouser-patched monarch of piss-stinking back alley, some lord of mangy scrapyard hounds, some king of half-wit drunkards.

Forget them, you might snort, and it would be hard not to disagree with you.

After all, we have genuinely evil clowns to fear and with good reason, but I don’t need to tell anyone that. Even without the orange buffoon in Washington and his collection of fawning sycophants, there’s plenty left to go around, from Boris the Tousled to Viktor Orbán in Hungary,  the sort of clown who files his teeth and lurks in rainwater gulleys under streets. We have AfD in Germany, we had actual Nazis in Sweden running for government and we have another real-life Nazi as Austria’s prime minister. Besides that, let us not forget Kaczynski’s puppet government in Poland. The Law and Justice party  — a bunch of populists who have completely forgotten the lessons of history, or perhaps learned them too well.

They’re everywhere and they’re all trading on a seductive cocktail of fear, lies and populism. Everywhere except here, isn’t that right? Everywhere except the sainted isle of Ireland.

Sainted? Didn’t we legalise same-sex marriage in the face of bigotry from the likes of the Iona Institute?

We did indeed, fair play to us.

And didn’t we get rid of that pernicious constitutional ban on abortion, foisted on us thirty-five years ago by a sanctimonious bunch of statue-nibblers?

We sure did, to the great surprise of many, including myself. I thought we’d be another half century defeating these god-botherers.

What’s more, aren’t we about to eliminate the crime of blasphemy, thereby exorcising the malevolent ghosts of John Charles McQuaid and his satanic master, Paul Cullen?

Correct. It’s true. We are, and just before Hallowe’en at that. McQuaid’s chains must be rattling in whatever foul cave his shade inhabits.

Why then the word sainted?

Well, you see, it seems to me that in ridding ourselves of the old shackles, we’re in danger of clamping new ones on our wrists and ankles. Indeed, it seems to me that we’re busy introducing the New Blasphemy, a prohibition on thought and expression that will be policed just as ardently by our tolerant, liberal, well-meaning friends and colleagues as the old blasphemy ever was by angry young thugs in clerical cassocks or by grumpy old Civil War fossils in the Dáil. And yes, I know nobody has been prosecuted for the Old Blasphemy, but it’s also true that Ireland has only recently emerged from a cultural blockade as severe as anything Hoxha imposed on Albania. And it’s true that anyone who failed to conform to the old authoritarian Ireland was ground down and silenced.

It’s inevitable that the pendulum will swing the other way, but we need to be on our guard unless we inadvertently open the door to demagogues, hate-mongers and right-wing opportunists waiting for a toe-hold in this country, just as they have done everywhere else. Let’s not clap ourselves on the back just yet. Instead, take a look at what has happened to reasonable, tolerant Denmark before telling ourselves it couldn’t happen here.

We have made a mistake by rendering some issues taboo and in doing so we have left the door off the latch for those who lurk in the bushes.

It was plain stupidity to call Peter Casey a racist for articulating what a lot of perplexed people in Ireland were asking: is a stable for your horses really a human right? Casey should never have been given the space to present himself as a victim, but that’s what the New Blasphemy achieved, by shutting down reasonable voices who were reluctant to draw condemnation on themselves or risk being branded racists. That’s what happens when a subject is off-limits: the field is left open to fear-mongers who care nothing about being branded as bigots.

This has always been the modus operandi of extreme intolerance. Begin with a proposition that many people are in tune with to some extent and escalate from that point to the outrageous in gradual, incremental steps, each time pushing the limits of outrage until decent people become accustomed to something they would have found abhorrent not so long ago.

That’s what Trump is doing right now and who can say where he’ll finish?

I mentioned at the start that I was thinking about the origins of terms like ambition and candidate.

In ancient Rome, ambitus, from which we get the word ambition, was a crime. It meant trying to influence the results of an election, either through plain bribery or by other means, and was severely frowned upon. It was his ambition that led to Julius Caesar’s murder by Brutus and his co-conspirators if my hazy memory of the great play is correct. In truth, it meant nothing more than ward-heeling, clientelism and cute-hoorism. If Caesar was in Irish politics today, he’d be having a quiet word with the Council about your over-sized extension, promising to get that bathroom for your uncle and tipping you off about the new by-pass in case you were planning to sell that parcel of land too soon.

Who would that remind you of?

Of course, on a larger scale, it meant Gallic wars, Rhine-crossing, invasions of Britain and eventually, Rubicon-crossing. Not to mention becoming dictator for life. Who does that remind you of?

Now, a candidate was an ambitious fellow who went around his ambit, perambulating, so to speak while wearing a candida, or white robe, signifying purity. Somebody with nothing to hide. A perfectly candid candidate who wouldn’t dream of lying or manipulating anyone.

Not much changes over the centuries, and so, by a commodious vicus of recirculation, we arrive back at Peter Casey.

Peter is not a fool, whatever else you might think of him and therefore the first word that jumps to mind is Why?

Why does a man who has only 2% approval in the polls insist that he will win the Presidency?

Why would he agonise about pulling out of the race over the hurtful accusations of racism thrown at him but then relent, having consulted  his advisers (whoever they might be)?

Why would someone who claims to be a man of action, a doer, a decision-maker, wish to occupy a role that is largely ceremonial, with no executive power and little enough hard responsibility?

I can think of no logical answer unless Peter Casey’s ambition exceeds his candour. Unless he is simply testing the political temperature of Ireland, calibrating the right-wing gauge by seeing how much bounce he can achieve in the approval ratings as a result of mud-slinging and fear-mongering.

It’s hard to see what purpose this ludicrous campaign could serve other than to act as a feeler for the sinister authoritarian movements currently flexing their muscles all over Europe.

Why would Ireland be any different?

 

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Politics

Presidential Campaign

Miggledy is going to win.

Let’s get that out of the way before we say anything else.

Miggledy has this wrapped up and the clown show that’s opposing him can do nothing about it, so what’s left to talk about?

Well, I suppose we could talk about the assorted no-hopers who somehow persuaded themselves and various county councillors that anyone would care what they had to say. We could talk about what drives people like Sean Gallagher, Peter Casey and Gavin Duffy.

Is it cynicism? Is it as tawdry as wanting this on their CVs next time they go hustling for business in the USA? Presidential candidate.

Or is it something else? Something that might be called ambition but should probably be called crass stupidity.

It’s hard to know which of the three male candidates is most irritating.

Sean Gallagher seems to have a natural gift for looking annoying, like some overgrown chest-burster who’s just gnawed his way through a crew-member’s ribcage in a spray of blood and offal, screeching empty platitudes at anyone foolish enough to stray too close to those razor teeth. Will he grow into a nine-foot killing machine with molecular acid for blood? Only time will tell.

Sean hand-delivered a letter of complaint to Miggledy in the Phoenix Park the other night, dripping saliva in the bushes outside the Áras as Miggledy paced his study floor, reciting stanzas from his favourite Inuit poet in an impressive assortment of accents. A candelabra cast his heroic flickering shadow on the blinds while Sean chewed on a small furry mammal, grunting foul imprecations as he hefted the half brick his letter was wrapped around.

What a shame nobody told him about this thing called a postal service. But Sean believes his own bullshit.

michael d higgins

Gavin Duffy, on the other hand, doesn’t quite carry such an air of tight-sprung menace. He looks more like that genial guy you used to know in school. That lad whose father put up the money to buy him a pair of record decks because books weren’t really his thing and it was either that or get a real job. The next time you met him, he was fronting a night-club for some rich alcoholic, leasing a second-hand BMW Z4 and sporting a brand-new accent that he caught in a tanning parlour. Nowadays he does some sort of property consultancy and he mixes with the social elite, or what passes for a social elite in your town: auctioneers and fast-buck money advisers. They all have the sunbed accent too.

Gavin would remind you a bit of that guy. The grin, the patter and most of all, the fact that he believes his own bullshit.

Peter Casey is harder to figure. He seems to be a genuine businessman and he seems to have made actual money for himself, which isn’t an indicator of anything in particular, I realise, except some primitive instinct to make money. But on the other hand, he seems to be as ill-informed about the nature of the Presidency as his two fellow Dragons, and equally prone to mouthing aspirational nonsense about what he would do if elected.

Casey, apparently, doesn’t believe in feminism. He spent a long time in America and thinks we have somebody called the First Lady. He says that when he’s in the Áras he’ll put his wife in charge of women’s things while he gets on with the important man-things, presumably things like jump-starting the presidential limo and whipping the flunkeys for failing to polish the silver.

Peter doesn’t like being challenged. He’s quick to tell interviewers how insulted he feels at their impertinent questions, which would lead you to give thanks for two things. First, our President has no power to have anyone lined up against a wall and shot, but second, and more important, Peter hasn’t a snowball’s chance of getting elected, which at least gives him something in common with the other two bozos.

And just like the other lads, Peter believes his own bullshit.

I don’t know what drives Joan Freeman. She founded Pietà House and seems like a well-meaning soul, although it is a bit strange that she can’t remember ever having had anything to do with the Iona Institute, despite the fact that half her family seem to be members, two of them prominent campaigners for a No vote during the Eighth Amendment referendum campaign. Joan believes she was once miraculously cured of eczema at the Knock shrine. Joan also seems to believe that the Presidency should be about supporting mental health, thereby showing the same level of understanding as the three lads, though at least she does believe in something, unlike them.

Worryingly, Joan is Mattie McGrath’s preferred candidate and yes, I realise this is very shallow of me, but if Mattie McGrath was in favour of apple pie, I’d be ordering the rat salad.

At least Liadh Ní Riada of Sinn Féin has a coherent political agenda, even if it isn’t one that unites all of us.  Liadh says she’d wear a poppy, for the common good, even if some of her fellow party members don’t approve, which is very decent of her, though one uncharitable thought did cross my mind. Isn’t it a pity those Sinn Féin members who hold seats in Westminster didn’t take a similar view on the common good and use their votes to sink Brexit?

Without that economic and political calamity hanging over us, maybe we’d have more patience for the seven-year shit show that the presidential election cycle has turned into.

As we speak, the also-rans are at each other’s throats over some empty-headed tosh Casey uttered about Travellers and there are of course the predictable calls for him to drop out of the race, which would be a shame. After all, they’re diluting each other’s votes nicely here, although Casey’s 2% will hardly make much difference one way or the other when he’s ignominiously kicked out on the first count. He can go back to his millionairing, Gallagher can go back to eating people’s rib-cages, Duffy can go back to selling tickets for debs’ balls, Joan Freeman can go back to Iona and Liadh can go back to pretending we still have Articles 2 and 3 and wishing she’d never heard of the HPV vaccine.

Miggledy can go back to the Áras he never left and we can go back to pretending this didn’t happen.

Again.

___________________

[Seven years ago, this was the official Bock view on presidential elections.]

Categories
Politics

US President Donald Trump to set up European HQ in Ireland

Donald J Trump has accepted an invitation from Enda Kenny to visit our country in his capacity as president of the USA, as opposed to simply being some random boorish clown who happens to own a golf club.

I know. It’s dispiriting, but what are we to do about it?

Actually, the answer is surprisingly simple. We should show Trump’s office the sort of respect he himself doesn’t understand. We should show him the kind of dignity he has no experience of. We should demonstrate to Trump what it means to be a fully-functioning human being.

In other words, we should greet him as we would greet the leader of any foreign country. Needless to mention, that doesn’t include green-clad maidens playing harps at the steps of his plane nor any government minister dancing attendance, as Michael Noonan embarrassingly did long before Trump’s handlers managed to hijack the White House, when he was still just a two-bit hustler working with a big bag of roubles.

No. We should greet the Leader of the Redneck World with a multicultural musical ensemble as he descends from Airforce Wad. We should invite the leaders of all major denominations to greet him. Catholic, Protestant, Jewish and Muslim.

We should invite the children of immigrants and of those who fled from oppression to present him with flowers. Syrian children. Libyan children. Afghan children. Iranian children.

Welcome, Mr President.

Of course, if we’re to have any credibility, we’ll have to do something about our appalling Direct Provision system, our unique Irish gulag archipelago capable of swallowing up entire families for decades, depriving them of normal human existence, refusing them even the possibility of preparing a family meal together. And we’ll have to do something about those appointed to hear appeals from the residents of the Direct Provision camps. Some of those highly-respected professionals have never granted one solitary appeal, despite being paid large amounts of money to sit in judgement over desperate people. What are the chances that not even one application has any merit?

Well, them’s the breaks, as they say. Tough.

But never mind any of that. This is modern Ireland and nothing like the old days, when remote authoritarians sat in judgement over unmarried mothers and jailed children convicted of being orphans.  Ignoring the plight of children confined to Direct Provision camps is nothing like ignoring the children locked up in industrial schools or the women locked up in Magdalene Laundries. These days, we lock them all up together and eventually, when the children become thoroughly Irish, become fluent Irish speakers in school, with no connection whatever to their parents’ home place, we send the whole lot of them back to Africa.

We’re good like that in this land of missionaries. We’re really great.

Of course, Enda made a big pitch to the Oompaloompa-in-Chief about Irish illegals in the USA. And yes, they are illegal, not undocumented. And yes, it would be great if they could all get green cards. And yes, I’m all in favour of it.

But why do we think there’s something special about us as Irish? Why do we always reach for the fool’s pardon? Why do we participate in this annual festival of paddywhackery with the likes of Paul Ryan slurping a badly-poured Guinness and Trump slurring his way through a Nigerian poem, thinking it’s an Irish proverb?

Why do we acquiesce with such bullshit instead of having some dignity? Why do we roll over and let our bellies be tickled?

The latest we hear is that Trump is going to base his European headquarters in Ireland and some of us wonder what it all means.

After all, Trump is the President of the USA. He has one HQ and that’s in Washington. The USA does not have a European headquarters and yet the Irish papers slavishly reported this nonsense as fact.

What’s the alternative? Simple: Trump, in violation of US statute, continues to operate independent business interests across the globe and proposes to set up an illegal offshore operation here in Ireland to evade Federal law.

Isn’t that what it amounts to? Will we facilitate Trump to engage in activity that would be illegal in the USA?

Is that in our long-term interests?

Never mind growing a pair. Isn’t about time we grew a brain and realised that this man is determined to destroy the European Union if he can? Isn’t it about time we realised where our long-term interests lie and isn’t it about time we stopped sending our Prime Minister to the White House for Saint Patrick’s Day like some performing monkey for the enjoyment of Irish-Americans who are less Irish than my cat?

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Politics

Donald Trump’s behaviour is that of a closet alcoholic.

Much has been made of President Donald Trump’s aversion to alcohol and yet his behaviour is that of a man who drinks heavily at night, alone.

His tweets speak of it. His rages speak of it. His tantrums speak of it.

Trump behaves exactly like a man with a serious alcohol dependency, despite his very public claim to be a life-long teetotaller.

What are we to make of this?

Anyone who drinks, anyone who has been drunk, knows what it is to go on social media and say something utterly stupid, something so cringe-inducing you want to jump around like Basil Fawlty with your head tucked between your knees. Aaarrrggghhh!!!

But what if you don’t possess the ability to be embarrassed?

What if you have the sort of character that is incapable of shame?

And what if you happen to be a pathological liar?

In addition, what if, much to your surprise, you happen to have become President of the USA?

You find yourself in the chocolate factory and you can do whatever you want, or at least, that’s what you think.

What would you do if you were a pathological liar with no sense of shame, no sense of dignity and with a serious reliance on alcohol?

What would you do if your chief strategist and personal Svengali also happened to be a heavy drinker?

I suppose you’d claim to be a teetotaler.

I suppose you’d sit up all night surfing the internet and tweeting insane accusations at imaginary enemies.

I suppose you’d be Donald Trump.

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government Politics

Trump to O’Reilly: “You think our country’s so innocent?”

Did I ever think I’d be agreeing with Trump about anything?

If Trump called me at midnight to tell me the time was twelve o’clock, I’d check my watch, my phone and my sundial, which admittedly wouldn’t be much use unless I lived in Norway, but besides all that, I’d still think he was lying.

If Trump said “hello”, I wouldn’t believe him.

If he offered me a bag of chocolate-covered George Washingtons, I’d waterboard them to find out the truth.

And yet, here he is answering Bill O’Reilly’s rather silly statement about Putin: But he’s a killer, though. Putin’s a killer.

Trump replies, There are a lot of killers. We’ve got a lot of killers. What do you think – our country’s so innocent?

Overlooking his lie that he was against the war in Iraq from the beginning, Trump is right about this narrow point, though not for any benign reason.

O’Reilly seems to inhabit that peculiar netherworld where carpet-bombing civilians, murdering elected heads of state and blasting villages with drone strikes isn’t killing.  It’s a Disneyfied view, straight from the Lion King where the apex predators are benevolent, wise rulers who would never dream of killing anyone. Even though Trump is a thoroughly detestable, revolting individual, he inhabits a different fantasy land from O’Reilly, and this time he blurted out something which is nothing more or less than the truth.

Of course Putin is a killer, just as Tony Blair is. Just as Clinton is. Just as Bush is. Just as Obama is.

I agree with what Trump said, but that doesn’t give me cause for hope. It just means that he thinks killing is perfectly natural and he doesn’t see why anyone would object to it.

That’s why I’m simply irritated by O’Reilly’s self-righteous Disney version of America but terrified by the bleak, paranoid, Orwellian wasteland Trump conjures up from the dark corners of his mind. Or what passes for a mind in a man so unhinged.

_______________

Previously

Trump: number of days without craziness, zero.

Breitbart. The parasite that has taken over America’s brain.

 

Categories
government Politics

Trump: number of days without craziness, zero.

We need a new name for the President of the United States of America, Donald Trump.

After all, we can’t keep calling him That Idiot, That Clown or the Tangerine Tosser, but luckily Donald has provided the answer with his threat to invade Mexico.

Yes. That’s correct.

Mexico.

El Trumpo Grande is going to invade Mexico unless they deal with their, wait for it, bad hombres.

Let’s pause for a moment to reflect on that.

All right then. Let’s not pause. Instead, let’s reflect on a world dominated by such a self-absorbed, inadequate man.

Anyone who has been a parent will understand the early years of a baby. Anyone who has raised children will tell you what a horror it is to look after a helpless creature with no understanding of anything apart from its own immature needs and demands.

Well guess what. We’re all Trump’s parents as this seventy-year-old toddler screams and kicks its feet in the air unless it gets what it wants.

Trumples attended the annual National Prayer Breakfast, an event attended by every American president for the last forty years. 

Let us set aside for a moment our views about the National Prayer Breakfast.

Hush, I say to you. Stay your hand just this once. Say nothing. In America there is a thing they call the National Prayer Breakfast and let it be so. Just let it be. That’s America.

All presidents until now have delivered a sober and worthy address at the National Prayer Breakfast. All presidents, that is, apart from the Trumplet, who used the opportunity to boast about his Celebrity Apprentice ratings and to mock Arnie Schwarzenneger.

That’s how classy the 45th President of the United States is.

El Trumpo has also threatened to attack Iran and has hung up the phone on the Australian prime minister.

In other words, el Trumpo is behaving like some tequila-crazed pistolero on the El Paso borderline.

Send for the Federales quick, before this hombre loco shoots somebody.

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Breitbart. The parasite that has taken over America’s brain.

The jewel wasp is a remarkable insect that knows precisely how to take over a cockroach.  First it stings the insect to temporarily paralyse its front legs.  Then it injects a precisely-measured amount of venom into exactly the right place in the cockroach’s brain to disable its  escape instinct.  Having achieved that, it leads the docile insect by the antenna, like a farmer leading a cow, to a tomb, where it lays an egg that will eventually become a larva.  The larva burrows into the cockroach and eats it from the inside out, taking care not to kill it, and at the same time spreading an anti-microbial layer to ensure that it has no competition as it consumes its host, until it eventually bursts out of the used-up husk, a newly-pupated jewel wasp.

I can think of no better analogy for the sort of evil ideology that has consumed America, just as it consumed Germany eighty years ago.

The viciously anti-Semitic, racist, woman-hating former CEO of the Breitbart website, Steve Bannon, has now wormed his way into the very heart of the American power structure, by drugging the biggest cockroach of them all, Donald Trump. And just like a jewel wasp, he has led the incomprehending roach down a hole and into his lair while the host still believes that it has the best advisers.

Tremendous. Really great.

This is something that the hosts of parasites often do,  continuing to behave as if they’re still alive long after the mutating larvae implanted in them have eaten their vital organs.

Long after hope has vanished.

A ladybird is a formidable adversary, even though it’s as pretty as an Enid Blyton story, but in the animal world, those black spots and that red carapace don’t say beautiful. They say don’t mess with me. When Dinocampus coccinellae lays its eggs in a ladybird, that host is doomed, and yet the drug injected into the insect’s brain ensures that the ladybird continues to protect the larvae even as they eat it from the inside out.

Today we learn that Bannon has appointed two more of his former Breitbart staffers to senior positions in the White House, thereby trebling the malevolence index at a stroke. Now we have three people from a racist, fact-mangling, anti-Semitic, anti-Muslim propaganda mill at the very heart of American power.

Do you think I’d care if these people had influence in the Seychelles or the Solomon Islands?

I would not, for the plain and simple reason that the Seychelles have no ability to destroy our planet, unlike the United States.

And now the United States is being taken over by the Breitbart Jewel Wasp.

Why would I not be afraid?

Let us hope that the host realises what the parasite is up to before all cognitive ability is gone.

 

 

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Politics

Is Donald Trump mentally fit to be President?

Trump.

Is he insane?Donald Trump

I don’t know. I don’t even know what the word insane means, if it means anything but I once received a useful working definition of insanity from a mental health professional. An insane person, he  told me, is somebody who holds false, fixed ideas and who is impervious to logic.

By that standard anyway, you’d have to conclude that Donald Trump is barking mad and yes, I know that’s not a medical term but I once knew a highly-qualified doctor who used it to describe his own psychiatric condition so I feel safe using it.

Donald Trump is barking mad, which of course is not his fault. Too much blame is attached to mental illness and I don’t want to demonise him, but we have to remember that this is the man who will have control of the Big Red Button, and this is also the man who asked why the USA doesn’t use its nuclear weapons.

This is the man who seems to say the first thing that comes into his head and who then goes on to believe what he just said, like a child playing fantasy games with an invisible friend.

This is the man who attacked the parents of a soldier killed in Iraq although of course, not being American, we might reasonably ask what this soldier was doing in another country. Still, that isn’t the point. The point is that Trump was unable to be courteous or dignified, unable to simply keep his mouth shut instead of attacking the Khan family,  mourning the loss of their son.

This is the man who incited gun nuts to assassinate his political opponent and then tried, like all schoolyard bullies, to pretend he didn’t say it.

Trump’s latest lunacy is to claim that Obama and Clinton founded ISIS, a  statement so deeply uninformed, so ignorant and so dishonest that it can lead to only one conclusion: this man is bonkers. Leave aside the actual foundations of ISIS as covered in this site some time ago. The fact that Trump might actually believe Obama founded ISIS suggests that he’s an illiterate, uneducated clown. On the other hand, if he understands the reality then he’s a cynical liar, but both options indicate a pandering to the stupidest, most incompetent slice of American society.

I’ve heard it suggested that Trump is experiencing dementia, which again, if true,  is not something he should be criticised for, but at the same time we have to be realistic. A demented person is not somebody who should be holding the BRB. A demented president is not somebody who should be forming friendships with Vladimir Putin. A demented commander-in-chief is not what the world needs at the head of the most powerful military machine in history.

Looking at Trump’s statements in the lead-in to the election, it’s clear that he has only a passing relationship with reality. Whatever Trump says is what Trump believes. It’s also clear that he has no understanding at all of world politics and that he might well get all his information from comics and Fox News.  Again, this is not something one would hope for in the president of the USA but we live in an upside-down world where words mean whatever we want them to mean.

We live in a world where an artificial bubble inhabited by fragile narcissists is called Reality TV, and Trump of course has dominated that genre through his arrogance, his stupidity and his ignorance, all fuelled by the one underlying force that holds such a universe together: money.

The Donald, all his life, has bought everything he ever wanted. He has no experience of relating to his fellow human beings as an ordinary, vulnerable person like the rest of us and therefore no knowledge of how people relate to each other and yet he tries to fake it, fooling many people in the process.

Psychopaths tend to be expert mimics. They watch other people’s emotions. They study how people respond, and they reflect it back in a highly-convincing way, but I’m not saying Trump is a psychopath. I’m just saying that if I looked for a parallel, the best one I could find would be Patrick Bateman in Brett Easton Ellis’s novel, American Psycho — but without the murders, obviously. I’m not saying Trump has murdered anyone, though I wouldn’t feel so confident if he ever got his fingers on the Big Red Button.

Truthfully, if this man becomes President of the USA, we all need to worry.