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Pauline Hanson – A Political Phenomenon.


This is another guest article by one of our regular contributors, Blackswan, who hails from Australia. It discusses Pauline Hanson, yet another politician who is outside what would be termed the political establishment, but who has still garnered a following. My feeling is she is yet another example of what I think is a worldwide trend of … Continue reading

Hope

I had my doubts about Theresa, but …


The demographics of the readership here have been remarkably consistent over the years. A quarter British based, another quarter mainland Europe, another from the Antipodes and the last but not least the final quarter from the new world. I’ve never focused on any particular one of those demographics, since what I object to and have … Continue reading

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A Berlin story : Fast Eddie, the dog’s bollocks and there’s always more pieces to the story.


I’m a people person and when working away from home I’d miss some company, so I usually sorted myself out a relaxed bar where I could occasionally pop in and have a couple of drinks after work and a chat with the locals. A smart etiquette when you’re new to the joint, is to sit … Continue reading

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Brexit – an analysis in the aftermath.


When people discuss politics with me, I fairly quickly come to a conclusion that they fall into one of two general groups. The first is what I think of as political theorists. They tend to base their opinions on whatever is the given and unquestioned knowledge of the peer group they like to think of … Continue reading

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Independence day.


I love Europe. I’ve lived and worked in many parts of it and always counted myself blessed to savour the rich tapestry of it; eating a Sacher torte on the veranda of a rather elegant café in Vienna while sipping on a viciously chilled dessert wine, meeting the only woman taxi driver in Milan who was … Continue reading

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They’re not fit to rule us.


Britain will be voting this coming Thursday on whether it wants to leave or stay in the European Union. The respective campaigns are called Brexit and Remain. A few months ago, it looked to be a David versus Goliath situation, with the Remain campaign supported by all the major parties. Basically, it was the big … Continue reading

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Internet censorship and whither shall we go?


This article is well ahead of what I think is the curve, but I think it gives people fair warning of what’s coming at them, and perhaps some time to start digging in before it arrives. Take it or leave it, as you wish, but you’ve been warned. As a lone blogger who writes to a … Continue reading

It'll cut or make you laugh.

The 100,000 500,000 750,000 pages landmark.


Well, there you go. WordPress informs me that 100,000 500,000 750,000 pages of this blog have been read, or at least clicked on, by people around the world. How so many people googling “meerkat” or “MaxGentleman” could end up here, I’ll never understand. It is of course, a feel good thing for a variety of reasons. … Continue reading

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The reason why.


This is another guest article by Graeme No3, one of our regular contributing writers. As a reader, I do enjoy reading polymath commentary by someone who’s equally comfortable writing about diverse areas like industrial engineering and one or two of the more obscure byways of history, and can yet pick out the correlations between the two. … Continue reading

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A Berlin story : Beate.


I’ve never had what’s called a local; I’m too antsy to spend most evenings in a bar. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not sniffy about that pleasant bracket of society and I’m partial to a drink and a laugh in company, but only once in a while. Every night would be too much for me. Turning … Continue reading

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I don’t like people who frighten children.


Meeting a person who’s a crashing bore over some cause or another that most people aren’t too bothered about is an everyman experience we all can relate to. You meet them in some social context, and after your efforts to politely disengage from the harangue pretending to be a conversation, you end up turning your … Continue reading

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Birthday musings.


It’ll be my birthday this weekend. I don’t like a lot of fuss over it. Nothing’s been mentioned – always a bad sign – and there’s a lot of furtive scurrying going on around me which I studiously choose to ignore, so there’s some plan afoot and events will unfold as is their wont and … Continue reading

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The red team.


If you’ve never heard of the red team concept, it’s a very useful management technique that’s been knocking around in certain organisations for a number of years. In essence, it’s a team of people, internal or external, who aggressively look for faults, flaws and loopholes in whatever an organisation is producing, whether that’s a product, a … Continue reading

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Political parties can die.


Every mainstream political party needs a mass power base of supporters. It’s a simple numbers game. If they don’t have it, they’ll always be minor players. If they had one but lose it, they drop back to being minor players or go extinct. Their support base will migrate to another party, which will then start … Continue reading

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Strength and honour.


I’d suddenly leap out of the wardrobe and demand her pearls. It was our game and one of our favourites. We called it the Lady and the Robber. She was the lady and I of course was the robber. She’d feign surprise every time but the clear and present danger of a pointing index finger and … Continue reading

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Why do you come here? We’re never going to get better.


I got home from work and the usual commute at about seven. It was one of those still dark evenings in the transition from winter to spring. After hanging up my coat in the entrance hall, I walked into the living room shouting a hello to my wife in the kitchen from which the sounds … Continue reading

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Science and sensibility.


In the ordinary way of things, I steer clear of the science debates over global warming. I served my time in those trenches many years ago and though it’s an important part of the overall push back, I concluded I could be of more use elsewhere and in different and perhaps less virtuous ways. However, I … Continue reading

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Safe zones, free speech and the Islamisation of the West.


There’s a new phrase which is entering into common parlance in the chattering classes – safe zone. There are a lot of cuddly wuddly new-age definitions of what it means but the bottom line one is excluding people from your particular niche of society whose views don’t agree with yours and which you consequently find … Continue reading

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Thirty seconds.


We’ve all taken some injuries working our way through life because that’s unavoidable, and we all bear the scars from them, but injuries heal or at least scab over. The black dried blood drops off them and all you’ve got left are those white patches of skin which’ll never disappear. Each one has its own … Continue reading

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How to get run over by the Trump juggernaut.


The first thing you have to do as a politician is totally lose touch with those people who’ve been voting for your party on auto-pilot for years. They’ve always done it, so obviously they’ll continue to do it. They’re someone you can afford to do a few “I hear you, I hear you” type of … Continue reading