8.13.2010 | Blog.
23 February 2015: Comment on head lines: By claiming that “Russian bombers are playing ‘chicken’ with RAF” before asking for more money to be spent on military hardware and NATO it seems to me that we are witnessing a distasteful, rather ridiculous attempt by the former defence chief Lord Stirrup to stir up (completely needless) fear in the population that a new Battle of Britain could be around the corner. As former RAF pilot Lucas wrote yesterday, nothing unusual is happening in the skies around these islands. Stop the scare mongering.
- “Plan to put voting online by 2020 election” ( I 26 January) is difficult to believe. It might sound an immense exaggeration, but that will be the end of democracy as we know it. Compared with other European countries, Britain already has a problem at polling stations, as voting takes place without adhering to strict rules of secrecy. Anybody casting a vote in a democratic society should be able to do so without anybody else – spouse, friend, relative, employer – having a chance to see what they actually voted for. It is only in that way that external pressure can be prevented. With online voting anybody with the power over somebody else, no matter how benign, can look forward to increased influence. Goodbye democracy.
- WF Guardian, January 2015: Am I really the only person who sees parallels between democratic Nazi Germany’s smear campaign against their Jewish population and today’s ‘Charlie’ campaign against the Muslims? Then as now the masses came out to show support for the concept of ‘us against them’; then as now cartoons were used to vilify, lampoon and hurt appointed victims/targets. Then as now religious differences were used to instigate hate and create scapegoats. We all know how it ended in those days but nobody seems to have learned from that. Good (meant as ‘satire’) for the western world, after the interim years with the Communists and the Soviet Union as our favourite enemy ‘we’ have found a new group to attack. But, what right do we have to use the precious right of free speech for that purpose? What right do we have to besmirch the memory of all those real heroes, not malicious cartoonists, who, despite the serious dangers involved, fought for this right to express our views without the evident risk of extremely serious consequences? I just wonder, will the ‘brave’ Charlie-people and all their new friends now re-publish those old Nazi cartoons in the same way as they repeat the insults of the prophet or should we rather stay with our new enemies? Probably safest so.
- 26 December 1914: The Queen’s Christmas message was indeed remarkable: first she seems to consider one woman’s search for her husband in war-torn Europe as an example of ‘reconciliation’ – as if the couple had been torn apart by a marital row and not by an insane war on which they as commoners had had no say. Then we learn that the 888,246 ceramic poppies at the Tower of London reminded us ‘of the grief of loved ones left behind’. Now, all of a sudden, reconciliation must have been forgotten as all these butchered men remembered by the poppies had all been British, – not one single German conscript among them. On it goes: ‘Without any instruction or command, the shooting stopped and German and British soldiers met in no man’s land. (…) It was a Christmas truce.’ No mentioning here of the fact that it was despite the command structures this was allowed to happen, that it was due to the fact that the high ranking officers on both sides were busy celebrating Christmas far behind the front line. As soon as they heard about the ‘disgrace’ these ordinary men were commanded back and ordered to restart the massacres of their new friends, people they had never fallen out with in the first place. Therefore, the word ‘reconciliation’ in this context is utterly misplaced. Also please remember, all this was under the supremacy of the Queen’s grandfather, whose picture she displayed beside her while speaking, and his German cousin Wilhelm, the war-hungry Kaiser. As history thereafter has shown us, with another nine years of world war in Europe, and with the knowledge that the aristocracy, not the commoners, made the decisions, it seems to me that the Queens’s final comment ‘the Christmas truce a century ago reminds us, peace and goodwill have lasting power in the hearts of men and women’ is ill-advised to say the least.
- 29 November 2014: What a condescending end to the ‘Plebgate’ affair: By ruling that the police officer lacked the wit (i.e. he was too stupid) to have lied, the upper class judge far outdid the alleged heat-of-the-moment abuse the PC had been exposed to by MP Mitchell. I take for granted that kind of public defamation will go unpunished.