Brief Thoughts on a Manic Monday#12

ITEM: Eyes up and right. You will observe a ‘new’ column heading suggestively titled Rolling News.

This is where from now on you will be able to find news of my latest writing endeavours, or ignore it completely if that’s how you roll.

Things are a little complicated at the moment, so for the foreseeable future the news will primarily consist of TTA/Black Static updates, but at some point I hope to spread my writing wings a tad wider.

We shall see.

ITEM: So, the election has come and gone, and ever since I have felt like I am living in some horrendous dystopian SF novel.

Call Me Dave’s cabinet appointments are not encouraging. The man appointed Minister of Housing has outside interests that include being a landlord. The new Minister for Disability includes among his friends a man who was sacked for making disability hate comments. The new Pensions Minister previously wrote a report stating that people should be encouraged to work longer and may need to engage in some form of voluntary (or other) activity to justify their state pension. The new Minister for Equality is a woman who voted against legalising gay marriage. And, of course, Jeremy Hunt who once called the NHS Britain’s biggest mistake continues in office as Health Minister.

One suspects that if Jimmy Savile were still alive he’d be in charge of Child Protection Services.

ITEM: Staying with the political theme, Isaac Asimov wrote a story in which the future government was determined by computer Multivac asking a series of questions of one man designated as the voter (I think it was called “Franchise”, but I’m not fussed enough to get up and check).

I’d suggest something similar for future UK elections. Instead of wasting huge amounts of time, effort, and money on the sad charade of democracy, let’s just ask Rupert Murdoch who he’d like to run the country and be done with it.

ITEM: I was discussing Charlize Theron with a friend, and she said that she always got her confused with another actress, but couldn’t remember who that actress was.

Me (after putting various names out there): Can you at least remember a film in which she appeared?

Friend: She was in “The Cider House Rules”.

Me: Erm, that was Charlize Theron.

For anyone who gives a shit, the actress my friend was trying to think of turned out to be Scarlet Johanssen.

And no, I really can’t see the resemblance either.

ITEM: To the list of little things that annoy me a lot, please add online forms that assume everyone lives in a city and water metres that are impossible to read unless you have whatever special tool it is water company employees use to get the ruddy lid off the inspection hole.

ITEM: Recently by way of work avoidance activity I spent an evening checking out Facebook pages and photos of people I used to know way back when.

Feeling really smug that, out of the guys, I am the one who has kept most of his hair.

ITEM: Reasons to Be Cheerful #195 – in June, TAG and I are going to see this:-

I’m Shrek and TAG is Fiona.

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7 Responses to Brief Thoughts on a Manic Monday#12

  1. Hi Pete, I really like the “Rolling News” addition. It’s a smart idea. Glad to see it. About the notion of just letting Murdoch decide who we want to be in charge, I remember decades ago, back in the Sixties I think, Leslie Charteris (a writer I otherwise liked) arguing that the one man one vote idea was passé, and what we should do instead is assign a certain number of votes to each person based on their education, awareness of current events, personal wealth, etc. Funny how only the wealthy come up with these improvements to democracy.

    • petertennant says:

      Yeah, in a similar vein, I seem to remember we had somebody over here suggesting that only tax payers should be allowed to vote, and they should have more say the greater the amount they paid.

      And I think there was a Robert Heinlein novel or two where only those doing military service were granted the right to vote.

  2. owlwoman says:

    The General Election result was truly horrifying, IMHO, although I’ve since read that only 24% of the population actually voted Conservative (I certainly can’t find anyone who will admit to it). Perhaps the rules they’re going to bring in for public sector trade unions should also apply to General Elections!

    • petertennant says:

      Yeah, I’m puzzled by the result as well. I don’t know anyone who voted Conservative either, though that could be down to the fact that I’m choosy who I’m friends with, preferring kind and compassionate people, which automatically rules out most Tories. I have seen posters up in some gardens, so I know Tory voters exist.
      What’s interesting is the gap between actual result and the pollster verdicts which had things much closer. Why would people lie to the pollsters? (That may be a stupid question.) Was there a last minute swing to the Tories?
      No matter, as we’re stuck with them for the next five years and the Labour party’s big idea seems to be to shift more to the right, which raises the question of what actual use is the Labour party.

      • owlwoman says:

        Indeed: we have to deal with what we’ve got. But I think the Labour Party should get back to its roots and actually consist of, as well as represent, the working and underclasses. Being a ‘nice’ version of the Tories is no good to anyone!

  3. petertennant says:

    Yeah, if Tory lite is all we’re going to get then voting Labour seems almost pointless.
    Post Thatcher/Blair it seems both major parties have realised that there are always going to be people who will vote for them no matter what and people who won’t vote for them no matter what, and so they aim to appeal to the marginals who could swing the vote – Labour by adhering to Tory ideals, just not going as far, and Tories pretending not to be complete arseholes. Very few of them seem to actually stand for anything other than doing/saying whatever will get them another five years in power, and often it’s not the voters but corporate/media backers who call the shots.
    I’m afraid I’ve grown very cynical regarding the Labour party. I’d love to see them get back to their roots and actually stand up for the little people, but don’t think that will happen till Murdock tells them it’s a viable election strategy.

    • owlwoman says:

      Well, put it this way – I voted for the Green Party as they appear to be the only people with any compassion, both for the planet and for the people/life on it. I’m certainly not holding my breath for Labour to stand for its original ideals!

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