Friday, 5 February 2016

Interconnected Issues

On the news last night a big item on the increasing suicide rate in the UK, thousands every year and the age profile is going up, probably because more middle aged people are killing themselves, rather than because fewer young people are.

Maybe Great Britain isn't such a great place to live anymore. The government wants you to work until you're seventy to alleviate the pensions crisis they created. Now, if you're in a job at sixty it may be difficult for your employer to get rid of you, but try getting a new job and it won't be so easy.

Equally, young people are leaving university up to their eyeballs in debt, unless they're Scottish, which is another problem because the so called United Kingdom is neither united nor fair. What is all this passion for devolution anyway? The only thing worse than a national politician is a trumped up local one. And all these extra layers of bureaucracy add hugely to the cost too.

The Romans ran most of Europe and North Africa with a civil service of about three hundred people. Ah, but look what happened to them I hear you say. Well, it was the pressure of mass migration that happened to them, people from poor and strife ridden regions who wanted in to what the Romans had and ended in destroying it.

Sound familiar? Now Russia has caused a huge increase in the refugee problem in Aleppo. Personally I'm an advocate of greater engagement with Russia; the Russians are major players in the world and you can't influence anyone you're not talking to. It's childish, just like Cameron's referendum, which I'll come on to in a  minute.

Just think, if Napoleon hadn't fought Russia, if the Kaiser hadn't fought Russia, or if Hitler hadn't fought Russia, how would our world look today? I'm not saying that Russia has done everything right. I grew up in the cold war and heard the testing of air raid sirens and I watched films about nuclear attacks and nerve gas. All very scary.

I'm not a fan of communism either, it may sound ok in principle, but clearly in practice it leads to corruption and oligarchy. However, not engaging with Russia is a huge mistake, they aren't going to take all, probably not any of the new refugees they are creating.

On the other hand, the west hasn't been so clever either. There's a reason why the Arab world, or large swathes of it, began calling the USA 'The Great Satan'. I'm not supporting that position, but the USA and Uncle Sam's pet Bulldog think it's ok for them to interfere, sorry intervene abroad but not Russia, oh no not them.

Well Putin is demonstrating that what's good for the goose is good for the gander. He's interfering for his own good, but didn't we? We cannot sort out the schism between Sunni and Shia and it's pointless trying. And why do we support Saudi Arabia when we abhor their human rights policy? If it can be called that.

Once again jaw, jaw would be better than war, war. Which brings us back to the refugee crisis dividing European politicians. Britain, soon to be the suicide capital of the world if we carry on the way we're going is saying we want our way and if we can't have it maybe we'll leave. How childish is that? Is it any wonder if the rest of Europe think we're mad? And what happens if a collective madness brings about our exit?

I'm very glad I can travel all over Europe, I'm very glad I have the option to settle in a happier place. When I was seventeen I went on a British Schools Exploring Society expedition to Arctic Sweden. We made maps for the Swedish Government while we were there and afterwards I wrote to the Swedish government to enquire about emigrating there. Sorry son, no dice, but now I could, or I could go to Italy, France, Spain, Portugal etc as many Brits have.

The media fed us stories about straight bananas, milk lakes and butter mountains, but most of the real issues have been sorted and if you think that the Italian, Swedish, Danish, French, German, Dutch et al politicians are worse than our crazies think again. Frankly I'd sooner most of them than the British socialists, somewhere right of Attila the Hun and very clever at squeezing more money out of ordinary people for their own plans, or the Tories who've learned all they could from them.

In principle I ought to be in favour of referendi, because I think politicians should be there to serve us not push us around. Frankly however this Euorpe in or out referendum is purely because the bloody Tories can't make their own minds up and want us to do it for them. We need to be in Europe and engaged, not throwing our toys out of the pram, especially in a crisis. Lets all grow up, vote to stay in and leave this cursed island and go somewhere happy!

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