Number of the Month

March 2014

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Spring fever

The UK establishment media have wound themselves up into one of their bouts of poly-panic over a variety of hate objects, which now include Putin, sugar and UKIP.

There is something inherently pathetic about the western establishment. They cloak themselves in fantasy, in alliance with various zealot groups, and hide away from the reality of the world in which they operate. They are completely taken by surprise when the inevitable results of their folly occur. In the world of the modern establishments, it is but a short step from complacency to panic.

Modern western politicians have two objectives; to acquire office and then to maintain hold on it. One inevitable outcome is that election loss causes parties to fly into a panic and then fall apart. Contrast this with Winston Churchill who, on losing the post-war election, sent a senior colleague out into the country to re-organise the party, while he concentrated on providing coherent opposition, thereby winning the next one. Many of today’s ills can be ascribed to the virtual absence of effective opposition. When nobody is pointing out the flaws and contradictions of government policy it soon develops in the direction of absurdity and triviality. Policy is replaced by vapid slogans (as masterfully practised by the likes of Blair and Obama) and in the end the slogans are all there are. This creates a vacuum, a wonderful playground for zealots and other narrow interest groups to dictate targets and strategy, while the alleged masters fiddle about in relentless but aimless activity.

Western politicians and bureaucrats assign to themselves the right to interfere in every detail of their people’s lives, from what they have for breakfast to their bedtime drink, plus everything in between. Such behaviour has a dual purpose; serving as both a displacement activity to cover up their lack of attention to the real problems of the modern world and also as misdirection (as practised by stage magicians) to draw attention away from the trickery they are really up to.

Vladimir the bogeyman

It has suddenly dawned on some members of the commentariat that Western energy policy has been suicidal. This is not news to us nasty old cynics. Energy policy takes a decade or more to reach fruition. Over a decade ago we set out the five simple principles of energy policy in a piece headlined in red entitled Power Mad. They are nothing to do with advanced physics, just old-fashioned common sense, which, before the political class got religion, did not even have to be stated. The occasion for this was a Government White Paper that defied all those principles. Believe it or not, that white paper is still effectively the blue-print for the national energy policy. Even in nuclear power, the natural bearer of the base load, the political class have deliberately run down expertise that was once world-leading, so that they are now obliged to submit to extortion to buy from others. Another nightmare is Gas supplies.

 It is a measure of the lack of intelligence among the western political classes that they learnt nothing from the OPEC experience. They have sleepwalked into a yet another situation where a foreign power has a stranglehold over their energy supply. Energy is the foundation of the modern economy, but still they just don’t get it. Meanwhile, the enemy within, the greenies and watermelons, are continuing a full attack on realistic energy sources, while promoting costly fantasy ones. These are presently battling to counter the unintended salvation miracle of fracking. Simultaneously, the Europeans have trashed their defence capabilities and some have demonstrated their consequent impotence by sterile military excursions abroad, including the current ignominious withdrawal from Afghanistan. Our young have been sent ill-equipped to face the risks of death, maiming and, now, sacking by the insouciant political class. Those who have learned nothing from history are doomed to repeat it.

Who can blame Putin for taking advantage of this eco-illogical disarray? The under-cover manipulations within in the secretive Brussels corridors of power cloak, among other things, a new imperialism. The EU is run by a bunch of non-entities, sound committee men (plus Baroness Wassername). They sit closeted in smoke-free rooms, playing games of chess on imaginary boards (where the laws of physics, or even common sense, do not apply). They bribe with wodges of money torn from hapless European taxpayers. When bribery is insufficient, they intimidate (witness the bullying of the Irish over the treaty that was “not a constitution”– you will keep on voting until you vote the “right way” then you will stop voting). They have lost contact with reality with the world outside; yet still delude themselves that they can manipulate it. In energy they are only just beginning to feel the fear of dependency.

 The old confrontation between communism and capitalism has been succeeded by one between  a kleptocracy and  a bureaucracy, both sharing a contempt for democracy. Not only the EU but also most national political leaders have wrapped themselves in a cosy blanket of wishful thinking. In particular, they have ignored the inevitable decline in energy security  and made themselves vulnerable to bullying, while ignoring the few leaders who plea for a return to common sense. They have dealt their opponents all the aces and still hope to win the hand. When such dreamers are perforce wakened to reality they panic, resorting to the old political cliché of too little, too late.

In that very old piece entitled Power Mad, the first of those five simple principles was this:

Energy should be obtained from a variety of sources, lest one should fail.

It is bootless to exclaim about a Wake-up-call or what we should have been doing  over a decade too late, as the UK political leaders (the greenest government ever!) are now doing. The few regular commentators who have warned and warned over the years (such as Christopher Booker and Matt Ridley) are still doing so, but perhaps some in authority will begin to listen. If so, it will be a radical change of course.

Putin heads a corrupt clique who maintain control over Russia by suppressing all opposition, through means such as jailing, bankrupting and killing those that threaten their ascendancy. The Russian-speaking people are strongly united by their common language, culture and tradition (all anathema to the Eurocrats). They also cherish the cult of the strong leader, which is why Putin goes in for all those rather embarrassing narcissistic macho photo-opportunities. What is he to do when he comes up against the intellectual dwarfs of EU expansionism? On the world map, as seen from Russia, it is surrounded by potential enemies and the EU has been nibbling at the edges of what remains of the empire. Its methods reek of old-time European diplomacy, intervening in disputes outside their own territory, nudging the balance of power, supporting factions and revolutionaries, who are almost invariably no better than the incumbents.  The poor Ukrainians find themselves in the buffer zone between the new belligerents, they suffer coup and counter-coup amid widespread corruption and foreign interference. Their history is one long list of invasions by foreign hordes. Vitally, they now have the lowest energy security levels in the world.

 The great irony is that none of the participants can really afford to play this dangerous game. The USA, Europe and Russia are all effectively bankrupt. Their national debts are massive and ever-increasing, all due to bad government.

In reality the West have no answer to Putin’s putsch and they know it. A predominately russophone majority in Crimea have voted to join Russia. Whatever you say about the legality of one plebiscite over another, it is a fait accompli. Any sanction they apply will hurt themselves as much as it does the opponents. They talk of supplying to the rest of Ukraine money and energy, which in their case they have not got. It is a situation fraught with danger. They have, by their own insouciance, helped to create the monster that is now Putin. If any good does come out of this, which seems, to say the least, unlikely, it will be that western governments will awake from their green dream and embrace real science and, above all, common sense.

Sweet nothings

If one campaign encapsulates the mode of operation of the joint politico-media scare industry, it is the current attack on sugar. Of all possible hate-objects, who would have thought they would pick on the basic construction block of all life on earth? The answer to this question is – anyone who has observed their propensities.

A Californian crackpot fabricates a fatuous three word slogan “Sugar is poison” and a wave of hysteria sweeps across the gullible world. It makes no more sense than, say, “Water is weight”. By equating two nouns he demonstrates that he understands the meaning of neither. If all the sugars were suddenly removed from your body it would mean instant death. That is a strange characteristic for a “poison”. Of course, those of us who understand the First Law of Toxicology know that everything and nothing is poisonous; it all depends on the dose.

Naturally, we have to add the usual rider that, as with all the most successful lies, there is an element of truth behind this blitz. Some manufactured items of food and drink are sugared to grotesque levels and their promoters deserve to be exposed. That, however, is not the way the system works. A key stage in all these crusades is when the behavioural dictators launch their “recommended limits “. Such limits almost invariably share certain characteristics:

  1. They are not supported by sound scientific data,
  2. They are inevitably more draconian than could possibly be rationally justified.
  3. All the propaganda is based on extreme examples, but all almost all the oppression occurs around the set limits, however dubious.
  4. New parasitic enterprises, both commercial and bureaucratic, come into being and grow inexorably.
  5. The population are forced into more tiresome self-monitoring and restriction of freedom of choice.
  6. New taxes are deemed to be justified.

The sugar scare has now reached this latter stage, as can be seen in the effusions of the Government’s Chief Nanny.

A wave of Farage frenzy sweeps the media

Meanwhile here in Britain, during the build-up to the EU elections, the savagery of the establishment media attack on UKIP is astonishing, even to us hardened old cynics. The Times has mounted an elaborate smear campaign against that little party, which culminated in a full front page splash alleging misuse of funding from the EU. The EU is so financially corrupt that it has never had its accounts passed by the auditors. Brussels is a fount of munificence to its thousands of beneficiaries – nudge, nudge, wink, wink, say no more, say no more. Its pretend parliament is without financial authority, or any authority at all for that matter. Funds are supplied secretively to its allies, such as the BBC. The fiddles operated by its members and other hangers-on, to say nothing of professional criminals, are the stuff of copious legend. Google “EU fraud” and you will get over a hundred million results. Why, at this particular time, is a tiny party suddenly thus pilloried?

Prime target is the leader, Nigel Farage. Such personalised campaigns of opprobrium are particularly offensive, especially when they are unrelated to performance of duty. A couple of discontented ex party members have been sought out and brought from obscurity into the limelight to get their fifteen minutes of fame by providing derogatory remarks and anecdotes. If the party leader really is an adulterer and if this really is news, why has it only appeared now? Could it be that there is an election in the offing?

Farage’s offence is that he has scared the excrement out of the almost universally loathed political class. He has held a mirror up to them and they do not like it. What is even more remarkable is the unison of the crony media in mounting a wide-ranging attack on him. Nothing could more readily expose the cosy arrangement that constitutes the modern establishment. The main parties are virtually indistinguishable from each other. They adhere to the same fantastical religion and have almost nem con backed the economically suicidal energy policy that it claims to justify, but we have been through all that above.

Number of the month – one.

Your anchoritic author’s highlight of the day is the ceremonial opening of a bottle of beer at the chime of noon. The Chancellor in his 2014 budget has taken one penny off the tax on this item of indulgence. For this he has gained great approbation. Naturally in the media this is translated into his having given me a penny, but of course, all he has really done is refrain from taking it away – like a kindly mugger who leaves you a few coins for the bus fare home. I calculate that by Christmas I will have saved enough from this generosity to purchase one extra bottle to celebrate the day. It is a mark of the frivolity of the media that this is treated as a significant gesture. Anyway, he has not sacrificed any of his income, as he has charged it up to the tobacco users. The annual escalator of tobacco tax is to be continued at 2% pa above inflation for the foreseeable future. Tobacco smuggling consequently grows in importance as a potential career option. The ruthless falsifiers who drive the most successful zealot campaign in the history of the March strike again.

Of course, in real world terms it is all persiflage. National debt and excessive economically deflating taxation are growing inexorably. But we are not going to panic about a little thing like that, are we?

31/03/14

Apologies for delayed uploading, which was due to multiple instances of Sod's Law in man and machine.

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