Country Reflex - A Poem for America

Thursday, 17 November 2011

news, views and attitude (innit?)

A lot can change in a week. More can change in a month and quite a fucking lot changes in a year etc. And I can’t believe that this is the first time in 16 months that I have sat down to write anything even remotely ranty. Especially as there’s been so much to write, eh, rant, about.

The global economy has gone into free fall at the hands of the muppets who have have been bleeding it dry at everyone's expense, there have been popular uprisings throughout the Middle East, much of Africa is once again being consumed by drought, famine and conflict, Afghans are still being killed, Pakistan has gone crazy, but nearly as crazy as the authorities in सिरिया. The US of A would like to attack Iran but can’t afford to, the Israelis still won’t behave themselves and treat their brothers and sisters with any modicum of respect. There’s been a host of natural disasters and storm damage around the world, from Bangkok to Philadelphia . Our so-called leaders have failed to agree on any meaningful action to prevent irreversible and catastrophic climate change. There have been riots on the streets of London, protestors are now camped out in the City of London and New York. A nuclear power plant nearly Chernobyled on us in Japan. The European Union looks to be on the brink of collapse following our largely pointless bailout of our crumbling, bankrupt financial system. Berlusconi's gone 'bunga bunga' and it's otherwise all gone Greek.

And now the tube drivers in London want triple pay not to strike on ‘boxing day’ while everyone else in public sector employment is going to strike on November 30th because the government has fucked them in the mouth as far as a decent pension is concerned.

Well that’s all we need. Tube drivers behaving like bankers and half the country out on strike because they have to work harder for less reward. I mean really? Who the fuck are they kidding? Don’t get me wrong. I sympathise wholeheartedly with those who will now have to work longer, pay more and get less and when they do get their ‘less’, will no doubt be too fucking old and decrepit to even enjoy a round of golf, or as most public sector workers can afford - a shot on the crazy golf at Southend-on-Sea. These are indeed difficult times. We should all pull together, muck in and, eh, stop paying into our fucking pension schemes?! There’s a thought.

Rather than striking because the financial system - crushed under the burden of pockets belonging to the very, very few - will no longer support the modest aims of public sector workers, why don’t people strike because half the world lives in diabolical poverty, hasn’t a pot to piss in or clean water to drink? Or because we have to step over the homeless on our way to work, or because some maniacs are determined to exploit every last drop of oil and cut down every last fucking tree on the planet? Fuck me.

These precious bloody pensions help run and maintain the status quo. Even those pension pots that are deemed ‘ethical’ or indeed ‘sustainable’ - it is all bullshit. Our pensions fund business-as-usual and as long people are conned into making their contributions, absolutely nothing will change. Everyone with a pension has an interest in business-as-usual.

Strike because our government wants to privatise the NHS.

Strike because old people will die of hypothermia in their own homes this winter and in one of the wealthiest nations on Earth.

Strike because our environment, our water and soil, is being ruined on a global, industrial and indeed criminal scale.

Strike because your government has and is, continuing to lie to you.

Strike because we are still embroiled in several illegal conflicts either directly or by proxy and our taxes are still being used to underwrite arms exports.

Strike because in doing so you can actually send a message to our so-called leaders that you give a shit about more than just the paltry some of money you MIGHT have to scrape by on when you’re old.

Strike because not going to work, or not partaking in any economic activity, is GOOD for the environment.

Strike because you demand regime change at home, not in some far off land to be exploited for lucrative oil and construction contracts.

Strike because it’s worth it.

But whatever you do, do not strike because you’re not going to get triple pay on ‘boxing day’. That is the most absurd thing I have ever heard. Bankers take note (not that you need any encouragement to take them by the bundle), look at the bad example you’ve set! Even tube drivers think their fucking special now – so much so that they can earn nearly twice the salary of a senior nurse responsible for line managing several others with responsibility for the lives of over 60 patients. And you fuckers think it acceptable to get £50k a year for pressing buttons to make a train move, stop and open doors? Okay, it maybe boring and the odd banker may well hurl himself under your train, causing a massive bloody mess of fat and gristle on your windshield. But hey, you signed up for it. Most boring jobs pay shit for wages and many people have to see ‘bad things’ happen every fucking day, even in the most boring of fucking jobs.
But at least you’ve got one. So fuck off Mr Crow. Go tell your drivers to shut the fuck up and stop behaving like those biscuit arsed banker boys and our whinging hypocritical leaders, too distracted from reality by their inherited fortunes, heiress fucking wives, six figure salaries and multi-million pound pensions, Bob.

Here’s an interesting piece of journalism (without any swearing in it) that deals with a fallacy that seems to be contagious.

On other news - The British Medical Association (BMA) really made me laugh today! Now there’s another great fucking example of irony’s brutally painful death. I didn’t think it could get worse after Tony Blair's appointment as middle east peace envoy. But in case you haven’t heard the BMA called for smoking to be banned in cars! Cars!!! Fuck me.
Yes, these vehicles that wreak carnage on the roads, pump out lots of nasty carcinogenic stuff and generally fuck the environment right up. But yes, we should ban smoking in cars. Instead, it should be compulsory for drivers to attach a tube between their exhausts and their mouths to prevent others from passively inhaling the toxic fucking soup that comes out the end! I think the British Medical Association have been experimenting with drugs again, not least because they make this sort of ridiculous announcement when an important and topical report on air quality is published. Or perhaps the BMA merely have a refined and sophisticated sense of humour?

Not only does smoking provide an excellent source of revenue for the Treasury, it also means that people don’t live as long. People paying more and more and more while getting less and less and less is surely just what the doctor ordered to help us through this age of so-called fucking austerity?

This may seem like a glib, facetious remark. But I do not believe that smoking is a ‘drain' on the NHS. Smoking is no more a drain on the NHS than people getting older, living longer or indeed the myriad of cancers that result in people who live longer which have absolutely fuck all to do with smoking and more to do with the shit food we eat, the lack of exercise we take, and the air pollution we breath, so and so forth.

No, my friend, the biggest 'drain' on the NHS are the Private Finance Initiatives that we are all hocked to the eyeballs paying for – but I’ll save that for another rant.

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