An exchange between Emily Thornberry and Boris Johnson today in parliament slowly degenerated into yah-boo childishness. She shouldn’t let him draw her into his antics. Speaker John Bercow, after some incoherent yelling from Johnson, then joined in the circus: “I cannot believe the right honourable gentleman behaved in this way in his schooldays – or perhaps he did, which may explain a lot now.” He then told Thornberry off for calling the foreign secretary “Boris”.
Meanwhile, anyone in the real world who wanted answers to serious questions could be forgiven for despairing: the Foreign Office team got away with defending the rule of law in Spain (by which they meant the police beating up voters and wrecking polling booths) and refusing to say they would oppose Sudan joining the Commonwealth on the grounds of that country’s human rights abuses: any decision, apparently, would be up to the other Commonwealth members. But as many of them are human rights abusers themselves, we’d better not hold our breaths.
So at the beginning of this afternoon I am in favour of closing down our useless parliament and dismembering the “Commonwealth”. As for the EU, don’t ask. In any case it got lost amid the Johnson-Thornberry double act.
We have ex-hurricane Ophelia on our doorstep, well, Ireland’s doorstep mostly. Nothing like in the Caribbean, Texas or Florida, but bad enough. There are 3 people dead, I think. And as far east as London, and briefly in Hull, the sky turned orange because of the dust that it created. Why orange? I don’t know. But perhaps it has a symbolic significance in that the effects of climate change are the same colour as Trump’s face. Goodbye to the Paris agreement? Goodbye to the Iran agreement? All our faces will turn orange. Goodbye to us all.
Towards An Autocratic State
(apropos the ruling against the CWU)
Greater love hath no judge
than to lay down the law
against the working man –
Thou shalt not interfere
with the profiteers
whom we have gifted with
these former assets
of the nation state
12 October 2017
Read Kevin Ovenden’s blog on Catalonia
She went to vote in Barcelona, a city in a European Union state
Do Rajoy, the Spanish state and their EU backers imagine there will be no consequence to the violent state repression in Catalunya?
It is a particularly brutal extension of elite contempt for democracy – referendums especially – across the continent.
That will not be lost among embittered layers at the base of European societies.
It signals something else. For decades the Spanish elites have sought to get beyond the politics of the Transicion 40 years ago and to have all the political questions contained within the less than democratic, and monarchist, constitution of 1978.
In much the same way Greek politicians have complained about being stuck in the Metapolitefsi, the residue of the great clashes of the mid-1970s following the fall of the Junta.
The repressive forces on the streets of Barcelona today resemble those of a…
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