Turkey is welcome to our EU place


In offering to fast-track Turkey into the EU, my friend Angie displayed all sorts of admirable qualities. For one thing, she really understands the essence of the EU better than anyone else.

Never mind all that nonsense about cultural kinship, shared destiny, fused history, European identity, common home. Es ist alles Katzendreck. The EU is a purely political construct, nicht wahr?

Gut. Then any country is European if politics demands it. And European politics demands whatever Angie demands, it’s as simple as that.

Angie could paraphrase her celebrated compatriot Göring, who once said, in response to a Gestapo inquiry about Field Marshal Milch, a suspected Jew, “At my headquarters I decide who’s a Jew and who isn’t.” In Angie’s rendition, this phrase could sound as “In the EU I decide who’s European and who isn’t.”

If political expediency, as Angie sees it, demanded it, she’d invite Saudi Arabia or Nepal to join the EU, never mind Turkey.

The deal she put on Erdogan’s table is as simple as ein Strudelstück. You take in all those Syrians, we’ll take Turkey into the EU. Verstehst du?

Or let me put it to you this way mein lieber Recep Tayyip. You limit the Syrians’ freedom of movement within Europe, we’ll give 76 million Turks unlimited freedom of movement within this accursed continent.

Remember your school physics, mein lieber Recep Tayyip? It’s like two communicating vessels. Ten million Arabs flow into Turkey, 10 million Turks flow into Europe. Or it could be 20 million in, 20 million out, who’s counting among Freunde?

Well, someone should – anyone, actually, who wishes Europe to remain even vaguely European for a while longer.

The arrival of a hundred thousand Syrians here or there would damage Europe severely, but arguably not quite yet beyond recognition. The potential arrival of millions of Muslim Turks, however, would have exactly that effect.

Do you understand, Frau Merkel? What you’re proposing is that Europe should die so that the EU (and, more important, your political career) may live.

Compared to the damage done by your celebrated compatriot Hitler, it’s like a .45 dumdum bullet between the eyes compared to a slap in the face.  

I’ve only had the pleasure of visiting Turkey once, some 20 years ago. Specifically, I went to the five per cent of the country’s territory that’s in Europe geographically – only to see with my own eyes that not even five per cent of it is in Europe culturally.

That was long before Turkey became ‘Islamised’, if you believe our analysts – or accept their premise that there exists a tangible difference between ‘Islamised’ and ‘Islamic’.

I was walking through Istanbul’s business district, jam-packed with young, Armani-suited executives on the rise. Slightly swarthier than the chaps one sees in the City of London, the suits a bit too, shall we say, Italian, but other than that you could have fooled me.

Suddenly a muezzin began to sing off a minaret (I hope it’s not the other way around, I can never get those Muslim terms right), and what do you know. All those patrons of Italian designers dropped on the ground where they stood and began to pray, dirtying their overlong trousers.

Within a minute the Turkish answer to Bishopsgate was turned into a sea of heaving backs, with attached heads rising and falling metronomically. A useful ethnographic experience and all, but, call me a Little Englander and report me to the Equalities Commission, I’d hate to see a repeat performance at Bishopsgate.

At that time, Turkey’s record on human rights wasn’t seen as good enough to warrant her admission into the EU. Now that the country has been ‘Islamised’, her record must have improved sufficiently for Angie to welcome millions of Turks with open arms (I mean this figuratively, as I hope you realise).

This at a time when the Turks are strafing the Kurds who are fighting Isis on our side. That sort of thing is hard to understand without using the dialectics developed by Angie’s celebrated compatriot Hegel and further refined by her equally celebrated compatriot Marx.    

What we should do is as clear as those fake diamonds being sold at Istanbul’s Grand Bazaar. The only possible action can again be illustrated by the metaphor of communicating vessels: Turkey comes in, Britain goes out.

Or, if you prefer a more human analogy, Turkey is a woman standing on a crowded bus, while Britain is a man sitting in front of her. The only gentlemanly thing to do would be for the man to get up and offer the woman his seat – especially if he’s getting off at the next stop anyway.

Christianity is now a treatable disease

By expunging the last vestiges of faith, progressive mankind has been trying to aid progress in its juggernaut roll for at least two centuries now.

All sorts of progressive methods have been tried, from mockery to mass murder, from brainwashing pupils to boycotting adults, from massive propaganda to confinement in mental institutions.

Yet nothing has worked decisively enough – faith stubbornly holds on. Even in the most progressive, which is to say Western, countries, some people still keep going to churches, and not just on high holidays. Clearly, antediluvian prejudices are so deeply ingrained that progress is in danger of slowing down.

Of all faiths, Christianity is the greatest offender. Judaism used to rank pretty high too but, after progressive German socialists followed Marx’s recommendations and sorted Jews out back in the 1940s, they have been keeping a low enough profile not to be seen as an immediate danger.

Islam is off limits for criticism because of its Third World, multi-culti implications. Regressively colonial Europeans used to abuse progressive Muslim countries by introducing Eurocentric hospitals, schools and administration.

When they were eventually kicked out, Muslims demonstrably flourished all over the Middle East, but the justified resentment remained. Even now, with all paths of progress converging at the summit, some European dinosaurs still claim that protection from Islam is a more urgent task than protection of Islam.

These human reptiles refuse to acknowledge, for example, the just claims of progressive Palestinians driven to despair by Israel, where Jews haven’t yet learned to keep a low profile.

Why, even though PM Dave has explained that Islam is a religion of peace, Muslims are still being provoked to violate their scriptural prescriptions by regularly stabbing dozens of Israelis, some of them to death.

But fossilised Christian (and Judaist) enemies of progress still persist. They point out that most of the world’s flashpoints over the last 20 years have involved Muslims and had nothing to do with Israel.

Specifically they mention the conflicts between Bosnian Muslims and Christians, Côte d’Ivoire Muslims and Christians, Cyprus Muslims and Christians, East Timor Muslims and Christians, Indonesian Muslims and Christians, Kashmir Muslims and Hindus, Kosovo Muslims and Christians, Macedonian Muslims and Christians, Nigerian Muslims and both Christians and Animists, Sunni and Shi’ite Muslims throughout the Islamic world, Muslims and Christians in the Philippines, Chechen Muslims and Russians, Azeri Muslims and Armenian Christians, Sri Lanka Tamils and Buddhists, Thailand’s Muslims and Buddhists, Muslim Bengalis and Buddhists in Bangladesh, Muslims and Protestant, Catholic and Orthodox Christians in Kurdistan.

Moreover, they insist that such apparent Muslim bellicosity, rather than being purely coincidental, has something to do with the world’s most peaceful faith.

In some parts of Britain, those that increasingly resemble a progressive Middle Eastern souq, people even perpetrate – unprovoked! – violence on progressive Muslims.

It’s only our progressive government that stands up for the right of Muslims to turn Britain into a progressive Middle Eastern souq. Henceforth, declared PM Dave, hate crimes against Muslims will be recorded separately and, presumably, dealt with more severely than crimes against, say, Christianity, which, despite our prelates’ efforts, isn’t yet quite progressive enough.

In fact, clinging on to that retrograde faith must be treated as a symptom of a severe mental disorder, presenting a mortal danger to progress. But not to worry: the disease is now treatable.

The treatment is called ‘transcranial magnetic stimulation’, TMS for short. Brains zapped with TMS lose the neurons responsible for critical thinking and decision making, which faculties are intolerable obstacles on the way to progress and especially atheism.

Jointly developed by progressive US and UK scientists, TMS was designed to cure patients of both Christianity and the irrational reluctance to see Britain turn into a progressive Muslim souq.

A recently completed placebo-controlled study shows that TMS works admirably. “Belief in God was reduced almost by a third, while participants became 28.5 per cent less bothered by immigration numbers,” says the triumphant report.

This experiment is in line with the underlying progressive certainty that all existential problems are at base medical. A bad mood calls for antidepressants, an iffy marriage for psychiatric counselling, boozing ditto, lamentable addiction to recreational opiates for iatrogenic addiction to therapeutic ones, worrying about the future for tranquilisers.

This is the progressive way to look at it, and our government ought to give serious thought to making TMS compulsory. What could be easier?

A Christian objects to homomarriage on religious grounds? Zap! – and there he is, walking the aisle with his rugby team-mate. Another one says that Britain is a historically Christian country, rather than a progressive Muslim souq? Zap! – he grows a beard, learns how to fire an AK and goes off to Syria to fight for progress.

As to capacity for critical thinking, our comprehensive education does a good job suppressing it already – but hey, every little bit helps. Just think how much easier life would be for graduates of our teacher-training colleges if all their pupils were zapped with TMS.

The opportunities are endless, and isn’t that what progress is all about?





Throwing the Buk at Putin

The Dutch Security Council has completed its investigation without naming the culprits in the downing of the Malaysian MH17 airliner.

Hooray! The Russians are rejoicing. The Council! Did not! Say! Who did it! That means only two things, as far as Vlad is concerned: 1) the Russians didn’t do it, and 2) the Ukie fascists did.

No Russian will wonder who goes by that name. By now the message has been repeated often enough and loudly enough for every TV watcher to know that every Ukrainian is a fascist agent of the CIA, FBI, EU and Mossad.

As an aside, this thundering propaganda of wholesale ethnic hatred hasn’t been seen in Russia since the Second World War, when all Germans were portrayed as subhuman sadists. Subsequent enemies were identified by their presumptive crimes, not nationality.

Hence mandated hatred was to be directed at American imperialists, not Americans; British colonialists, not Englishmen; Zionists or cosmopolitans, not Jews; Hungarian hirelings of Wall Street, not Hungarians; Czech revisionists, not Czechs. In each case the connotation was clear enough, but the denotation remained ideological, not ethnic.

But hey, who says Vlad has to follow blindly the path trodden by his admired predecessors, such as Stalin? Who says he isn’t capable of creative development?

No one. Certainly no one who follows Vlad’s propaganda. So it’s not just the Poroshenko government that’s fascist, but every Ukie. They are all Russia haters red in tooth and claw.

And what coloured the Ukies’ teeth and claws red was the blood of MH17’s 283 passengers and 15 crew. That’s the only inference one can possibly draw from the Dutch report.

Here one has to observe with some sadness that attention to detail, especially procedural detail, isn’t one of the most salient talents the Russians possess. The detail they ignore in this case is that this phase of the investigation was purely technical.

The Council wasn’t out to point accusing fingers – this will be done in February by the international board of inquiry. The Council’s task was merely to establish what brought the plane down.

So it did. MH17 was shot down not by a Ukrainian or American fighter plane (as has been mooted in the Russian press) but by an AA missile fired from a Russian-made Buk system.

Ukrainian loyalists have those in their arsenal too, but here’s the rub: MH17 was hit by the latest Buk modification that’s the exclusive property of the Russian military. Only these latest missiles contain in their warheads the butterfly-shaped shrapnel found in the victims’ bodies.

Moreover, the report outlined the area of 360 square kilometres, within which the guilty Buk was sited. Here’s another rub: that whole area was at the time in the hands of ‘Ukrainian separatists’, which is the Russian PC term for the bands of Putin’s proxy troops.

That makes the naming of culprits redundant. Russia’s guilt is as good as proved, something that the February inquiry will certainly confirm.

The cynic in me suspects that Putin’s bombing raids on Syria were timed to coincide with the release of this report. He knew what the findings would be and, with the instinct of the ‘common Petersburg thug’ (Vlad’s own self-description) realised a diversion was necessary to draw the world’s attention from murdered passengers.

One hopes that not everyone’s attention will be thus diverted. For it’s the tragic fate of MH17 that turned Western opinion against Vlad. None of his previous crimes had had enough resonance to muffle the admiring noises emanating from the latest generation of ‘useful idiots’ in the West.

The KGB junta fronted by Vlad attacked Chechnya and Georgia, annexed the Crimea along with large portions of the Ukraine’s territory – and still he remained a great leader in Nigel Farage’s eyes.

It murdered, roughed up or imprisoned hundreds of Vlad’s political opponents, with some ‘whacked’ with nuclear weapons in the middle of London – and Hitchens, Booker and other useful idiots still kept their panegyrics going.

But the criminal downing of MH17 – and let’s face it, everyone knew from the start who did it – was a step too far, especially since most of its passengers were Western. Had they all been Malaysian, our conscience wouldn’t have flamed so bright, but killing Westerners is where we draw the line.

Not too thick a line, mind you, for the panegyrics didn’t stop, and Vlad is still depicted in some circles as a strong leader, patriot, defender of traditional values and the last bulwark of Christianity, rather than the KGB murderer he is.

But enough of a line was drawn for the modest sanctions to stay in place, and Russia to be increasingly seen as a pariah state, albeit not without redeeming qualities. Therefore, when the inevitable conclusion is published in February, some more diversion will be in order, and the more spectacular the better.

Call me selfish, but I only hope that Vlad won’t choose London for his target practice. Or Paris, where I have many friends. Or Israel, where I have friends too. Or America, where I have both friends and family.

I could almost forgive him Brussels – especially the part where the EU HQ is. It’s Rue de la Loi, Vlad, just south of that wedding-cake square. Can’t miss it.





Pray for the Church to stay irrelevant

When applied to Christianity, the world ‘relevant’ has the same effect on me as loud cacophony has on music lovers. On the plus side, this pernicious word provides several reliable clues to the personality of the person using it.

He can be guaranteed to be a) an atheist, b) a pseudointellectual who believes that, though clever people like him know better, religion has some social value for stupid people, c) ignorant of Christianity and most other things that matter, including human nature, d) a trendy leftie, for all the lip service he may or may not pay to free enterprise and some such.

Whoever wrote today’s Times editorial Vatican III? is all those things, and also not very bright to boot.

Some identified “observers on Catholic affairs” believe, says the article with obvious glee, “that the Pope [is] beginning the long, painful process of bringing church doctrine on sexual and family matters into line with what ordinary Catholics in many parts of the world actually do or think.”

The observation is as accurate as the relish discernible behind it is subversive. Yes, the Pope is doing just that. And no, unlike our government the Church isn’t run by focus groups. It’s ordinary Catholics who should get in line with the Church and its dogma, not vice versa.

The process the Pope is beginning isn’t so much long and painful as destructive. And if it’s true that he’s indeed planning a Vatican III, then the Church, already deeply shaken by Vatican II, may fall apart.

Take the Pope’s desire to “increase the role of women in the Church”. It isn’t immediately obvious how the role of women can possibly be increased above that already played by Mary Magdalene, St Theresa, St Catherine, St Bernadette – to say nothing of the Virgin.

One can’t get rid of the gnawing fear that His Holiness tries to step on the thorny path leading to the ordination of women, pushing the button on the time bomb that has already shown its explosive potential in the Anglican Church. Add to this his ambivalence on homosexuality and divorce, and the bomb’s yield goes up a few megatons.

Traditional, which is to say truly Catholic, prelates have so far been fighting successful rearguard action against His Holiness’s reformist zeal, but for how long?

This week they’ve written a letter warning that the Catholic Church may suffer the same collapse as that suffered by liberal Protestant churches, which was “accelerated by their abandonment of key elements of Christian belief and practice.”

I’d be tempted to express my concern in even stronger terms. Such abandonment, to various degrees, isn’t just a feature of ‘liberal Protestant churches’ but of Protestantism as such. The Reformation tore the Western Church asunder, paving the way for anticlericalism first, agnosticism second and atheism third.

It also showed that believers reform the Church at their peril. This organisation, after all, exists to guard and transmit what it must see as the eternal, revealed truth, which is by definition absolute.

The moment compromises are made to make the Church more ‘relevant’ to a world increasingly alien to it, it loses much of its credibility and some of its legitimacy. The Church is a viscerally conservative body – or it is nothing.

Its founder being a living God, Christianity is of course a living religion. That leaves room for the possibility that the revelation wasn’t given all at once, and subsequent generations may receive new instalments to what was given to those Galilean fishermen.

Indeed, several Church Councils held centuries after the apostolic mission began clearly received embellishments on the original revelation. It’s on that basis that they modified the doctrine, dogma and rituals of Christianity.

Should the Pope or likeminded prelates claim that God has spoken to them and guided them on the path to liberalisation, such claims would deserve respect. But they say no such thing. Their desire is to get more bums on pews by making the Church ‘more relevant’ to a world utterly corrupted by variously evil secular fads.

There perdition lies, and champions of its arrival can count on thunderous applause from The Times.

Because the Church “is an important part of the social fabric of many societies,” continues the editorial, “…it is in society’s interests for the church to… be relevant… It is seemingly wise to want to see church doctrine more closely and sympathetically reflect the lives of both believers and non-believers.”

This is ignorant gibberish. Church doctrine must “closely and sympathetically reflect” not the lives of “both believers and non-believers” but the revealed truth of Jesus Christ. The moment it starts catering to perverse fads that are destructive even in their secular context, it stops being the body of Christ it’s constitutionally supposed to be (1 Corinthians 12:27).

It becomes instead an extension of social services, and we know what a resounding success they are. Its relevance increases in inverse proportion to its holiness.

Oh well, we know The Times isn’t Catholic. But I for one am trying to suppress the urge to ask seriously the question often posed facetiously: “Is the Pope?”




The first refuge of a scoundrel

If patriotism was the last refuge of a scoundrel to Dr Johnson, I wonder where on the scale of such refuges the great man would have placed the opposite passion.

At a guess, utter contempt for one’s own country would have appeared somewhere near the top. And Dr Johnson would have turned crimson with rage observing such feelings being expressed by supposedly loyal public servants.

As he conveniently died in 1784, the compiler of our first dictionary will be spared the sight of such infamy. We aren’t so lucky.

For the senior officials of Scotland Yard have banned the Met’s officers from wearing a Union Jack sleeve badge in tribute to their fallen comrade, PC David Phillips.

The reasons cited for the ban are two-fold: first, the sight of our national flag may cause “offence” to “some communities”; second, “the badge may be seen as some sort of political statement.”

Indeed, one could argue that any display of a national flag is a political statement. So is the national anthem. So is any document issued by a state, including a passport.

However, unless we object to England footballers belting out God Save the Queen before playing Lithuania last night, or to travelling with a document issued by Her Britannic Majesty’s Secretary of State, we must agree that not all political statements are ipso facto objectionable.

The British flag symbolises the unionist nature of our commonwealth, which seems to be straightforward – when used in a straightforward way. It can of course be used offensively, for example if English fans at the Lithuania match had started singing “There ain’t no black in the Union Jack” every time a black player touched the ball.

However, the ban issued by Scotland Yard bosses suggests that they consider any display of our flag to be offensive, if only to “some communities”.

Which communities would they be? The Welsh, whose symbol isn’t represented in the pattern? The Scots, who wish theirs weren’t, referendum or no referendum? The Muslims? The Germans or the French?

As to foreigners of any nationality, one struggles to see how this is any of their business, and actually they know it isn’t.

The French used to have difficulties with the sight of the British flag flapping over the heads of those about to kill them, but not since 1815. The Germans have more recent memories, but not since 1945. And even if for some unfathomable reason they, or any other foreigners, were unhappy seeing our flag, why should we care?

That leaves British subjects representing “some communities”, where the sight of the Union Jack supposedly causes offence.

This calls for two comments. First, if any such communities of British subjects indeed exist, they’ve effectively renounced allegiance to Her Britannic Majesty and therefore are no longer entitled to the protection by her government.

In other words, they’ve forfeited their Britishness and should be summarily deported to any country whose national symbols they find more agreeable.

Second, I don’t believe such “communities” exist. Not all ethnic and religious groups of British subjects are equally patriotic, but I doubt that any group out there would be offended by the Union Jack en masse, even if they have mixed feelings about what the flag represents.

Nor do I believe that homosexuals en masse support homomarriage or that women and working classes en masse see themselves as oppressed minorities. What I do believe exists is a certain mindset going by the name of political correctness.

This is deliberately cultivated by our ruling elite because they know that power in Britain doesn’t come from the barrel of a gun. It comes from controlling the use of language, something I call glossocracy.

Our glossocrats have a vested interest in destroying social cohesion, turning various groups against one another, for a united society would certainly be united in its revulsion at the spivs who govern it.

Hence, rather than trying to allay petty grievances, our glossocrats encourage them. And if no grievances exist, they create them.

The Union Jack is one of the few factors in our life that still have a unifying value. That’s why our glossocrats must communicate to all the usual suspects that they ought to be offended by the sight – even if they harboured no such feelings yesterday.

I for one find an excessive and loud worship of national symbols, as practised in some countries, to be idolatrous and, even worse, in poor taste. But who in his right mind would regard policemen displaying a discreet sleeve badge as loud and excessive? Especially when they mourn their comrade killed in the line of duty, protecting the public from wrong-doers?

Nobody. Except the scoundrels loyal not to our country but only to themselves.


P.S. I first used the term ‘glossocracy’ in my book How the West Was Lost. Its second, paperback, edition, is now available for pre-order on Amazon UK.


Congratulation to Angus Deayton on a successful career change

Time sure flies when you’re having fun, as Americans say. Seems like it was only yesterday when the actor was sacked as presenter of the satirical show Have I Got News for You.

In fact that unfortunate event happened in 2002 – 13 years ago! The sacking was precipitated by a scurrilous tabloid claiming that Mr Deayton had done cocaine (and who in his profession hasn’t?) and cavorted with ladies of easy virtue (ditto).

That was enough for the BBC, known for its unimpeachable moral probity, not to mention political sagacity, to sack the hugely successful presenter – this though 75 per cent of the public begged the Beeb to let him stay.

I must admit to my shame that, not being a regular watcher of TV programmes, I’ve lost track of Mr Deayton’s career since then. But I’m glad to see that apparently he landed on his feet.

Rather than moaning about his shocking dismissal, Mr Deayton buckled down and changed careers altogether by retraining and taking up the study of economics.

He made such giant inroads on his new field that he has just been awarded the 2015 Nobel Prize. Mr Deayton ought to be praised for taking just 13 years to travel from the novice position at the bottom of his new profession to its very summit.

I can’t say I’m unduly surprised. Economics, after all, is a dubious science. Unlike, say, physics or chemistry that require, in addition to intellect and talent, a command of a staggering corpus of knowledge, economics is a bit of a non-science.

This Enlightenment construct essentially describes ways in which people make a living, an endeavour in which they had been succeeding famously throughout history, and long before the first economist was a twinkle in his father’s eye.

Since then practitioners of this non-science have alternated between uttering either truisms or falsehoods.

The self-evident truisms (sorry about using this tautology) essentially revolve around the observation that people will make a better living if the government doesn’t put obstacles in their way.

The utterers of counterintuitive falsehoods, on the other hand, maintain that the more money the government takes away from the people, supposedly to spend it on their behalf, the better off the people will be.

This is more or less it. The rest is waffle, typically reinforced with computer models and other such arcana. Economists use those as rods with which they fish in the troubled waters of human behaviour, in this instance its economic aspect.

They also use recondite vocabulary to talk about some mysterious ‘paradigms’ that explain why people make a better living when left alone, or conversely when interfered with by the government.

I suggest that, if we listen to these chaps, or especially organise our affairs on the basis of their prescriptions and predictions, we’ll soon all be marching to Depression-style soup kitchens, singing ‘Brother, can you paradigm?’ (I’m plagiarising myself here: this silly pun first appeared in my 2011 book The Crisis Behind Our Crisis. Sorry about that.)

All in all, I’m not surprised that a sacked comic actor with the gift of the gab took just a few years as a newly hatched economist to collect the Nobel…

Oops, hold on for a moment… My wife has just looked over my shoulder and said that the winner of the 2015 Nobel Prize for economics isn’t the actor Angus Deayton but his near-namesake Angus Deaton, who actually is and always has been an economist.

Well, disagreements over a single letter have been known to start religious wars with thousands of casualties, so I’m not surprised that my wife is upset about my negligence.

Actually, as it turns out, Prof. Deaton (sic!) has received his accolade for the earth-shattering discovery that people still buy things even if they’re unsure they’ll continue to have much money to buy things with for any foreseeable future.

Come to think of it, I’d rather give the Prize to Mr Deayton (sic!). He probably didn’t make a similar discovery only because his mind was set on other things – which, one has to admit, are as much use but much more fun.  





Paul Valery on our fiscal idiocy

Though this French poet and philosopher died 70 years ago, he left one aphorism that we are busily proving right even as we speak. “History,” he wrote, “teaches precisely nothing.”

That we fail to learn from ancient Rome or Saxon England is understandable. Our inability to take on board lessons taught a few years ago is rather less so. If the former failure betokens some ignorance and lack of analytical capacity, the latter is a sign of sheer idiocy and irresponsibility.

Unlike our powers-that-be, a reader of mine, a mortgage broker, can put two and two together. He looks at the way our government and banks operate, and realises to his horror that they are doing exactly the things that caused the 2008 disaster.

The practical conclusions he draws from this realisation turn him towards such practical steps as stocking up three fridge-freezers just in case. While envying his foresight, I’m too lazy to resort to such prudent measures. But I do sympathise with his reasons.

Economists agree that the principal reasons for the 2008 crisis were profligate lending by banks and promiscuous spending by governments. My reader is in an ideal position to see that the first problem is as bad as ever.

He observes banks dispensing cheap 90 per cent mortgages with the same cavalier insouciance that they displayed in the run-up to the crisis. “There is no way a bank would get anywhere near its money back on repossession,” he writes. “The mortgage pricing is sheer lunacy.”

The practice of building tottering structures of derivatives on the termite-ridden foundations of unsecured loans hasn’t abated either. At the time I wrote my 2011 book The Crisis Behind Our Crisis, the sum total of outstanding derivatives stood at an amount equal to twice the combined GDP of the whole world. It’s much higher now, which is another good way of ensuring catastrophe.

Our government, which illogically prosecutes freelance operators of pyramid schemes, runs its own finances on exactly the same principle.

Since George Osborne introduced his ‘austerity’ in 2010, much vaunted in some circles and much derided in others, our sovereign debt has almost tripled to £1.36 trillion, making it the only strengthening part of our sovereignty.

To make sure that the debt will never go down, George is consistently spending five per cent more than the Exchequer gets from taxes. Servicing this debt already costs us more than the entire defence budget, a disparity that’s guaranteed to grow because the debt will continue to go up, while the defence spending will dwindle away to nothing.

A tottering inverted pyramid barely balanced on its point is bound to do a Jericho sooner rather than later. If this coincides with the next general election, we may well be regaled with Jeremy Corbyn as prime minister, which will be the end not only of our economy but also of our civilisation.

Actually, I’ve changed my mind on those fridge-freezers. Can anyone recommend a good brand, reasonably priced?





The EU referendum is a losing proposition

If a lottery is a tax on people who are rubbish at maths, this referendum is a tax on people who are rubbish at politics.

Any referendum is based on an idealistic, and hence unrealistic, assessment of the wisdom of vox populi. Yet only the vox of an intelligent and well-informed populo ought to decide vital matters.

A brief conversation with a randomly selected group, say in a pub, will show that the British public doesn’t meet this lofty standard. Most of what one hears is a crude rehash of stock EU lies counterbalanced by a visceral dislike of foreigners.

Exaggerated belief in collective wisdom is based on Enlightenment ideology, not any available evidence. That’s why unlimited, never mind direct, democracy was alien to Britain’s constitutional tradition.

This was encapsulated by Burke: MPs should represent people’s interests, not their wishes. The resulting balance, with the elected power of the Commons offset by the hereditary power of the crown, with the Lords making sure the balance wouldn’t unduly tip either way, was the best political arrangement mankind has ever known.

That has been replaced with the dictatorship of the Commons sustained by an infinitely expanding franchise of increasingly dumbed-down voters. Hence those fit to govern are never elevated to government any longer – unlimited democracy has predictably become unlimited spivocracy.

Plebiscite takes this process one step further, moving from witless to crazy. Taking this particular referendum, the country’s future may well be decided by people who think that, should Britain regain her constitutional sovereignty, we wouldn’t be allowed to travel but stay destitute, isolated and marginalised on our little island.

No one seems to realise that holding an EU referendum is tantamount to staking Britain’s future on a roll of loaded dice.

First, the vote to stay will be irreversible, but the vote to leave won’t be. If the past is a reliable indicator of the future, then the EU will treat such a result with the same disdain it showed for other referendums going against it.

Either dissenting countries were treated like inept schoolchildren and told to try again until they got it right, or else the same measure was resubmitted under a different name. (That’s how, with changes invisible to the naked eye, the European Constitution came back as the Lisbon Treaty.)

Just think about it: Darren votes to stay in the EU because he thinks that otherwise he’ll never be able to go to Ibiza again – and 2,000 years of our constitutional tradition go down the drain.

Or, if Darren’s old enough to remember that Ibiza was open for British orgies even before the Maastricht Treaty, his Out vote will probably be nullified by EU spivs in cahoots with our own.

These are rotten odds – especially since Darren will be deluged with torrents of pro-EU propaganda led by our ‘Tory’ government and supported by every fraudulent means at the EU’s disposal.

One such will be granting a few token concessions at the last moment, enabling Dave and George to claim that Britain’s relationship with the EU has changed so much that we have all to gain and nothing to lose by staying.

Anyone who believes that our public will be able to tell token concessions from real ones lives in a fantasy world. Does anyone seriously expect the people who’ve made Coronation Street our crowning cultural achievement to wade through the fine print of 1,000-page documents written in barely comprehensible Euro-English?

Since both the ruling party and Her Majesty’s Opposition (which hates both Her Majesty and the sovereignty she embodies) are committed to staying in the EU, a privately financed campaign to leave will stand zero chance – even if it presents a united front.

However, since it doesn’t, the chance slips below zero into negative values. Ukip, which after all, forced Cameron to pledge the referendum in the first place, should lead the campaign. And so it does – its own.

A much larger mainstream effort is being fronted by Lord Lawson, him of the family where daughters are named after their fathers. That’s like Sepp Blatter leading a campaign to end FIFA corruption.

For it was Mr Lawson, as he then was, who as Chancellor was in 1987 directly responsible for the policy of shadowing the deutschmark, which resulted in the 1992 disaster of Black Wednesday.

This might have been an honest mistake, and he now sees the situation differently. However, it’s obvious that Lawson has no principled objections to jeopardising Britain’s sovereignty, economic and therefore political, for the sake of what he sees as expedience.

Expedience, however, is fickle. What’s expedient today may look insane tomorrow, and vice versa.

Suppose that by the time of the referendum Osborne’s phoney prosperity has run out of steam, as it almost certainly will. How committed will Lord Lawson remain to the Out campaign? He’ll probably revert to what he saw as a pragmatic pro-EU position back in 1987.

Barring a military coup, British sovereignty can only be regained by parliamentary consensus. Gaining it ought to draw the energy and funding that at present go into campaigning in this doomed referendum.

The odds of succeeding in our lifetime are slim – but trying is still better than letting people sink our constitution with the torpedo of a rigged plebiscite.

































Russia makes the world interesting

But for Russia, what news items would pique your interest? Dave’s recipe for pig’s cheeks? A duchess sleeping with her estate keeper? Even weather forecasts on Russian TV are more fun than that.

The other day a curvaceous girl did an impersonation of a Channel 4 weathercaster, complete with a dazzling smile and an electronic map superimposed on the backdrop.

The girl pointed at the map, allowing the viewers a good look at her figure. Thus distracted, they took a few seconds to realise that the map showed not Russia but Syria.

The beauty then conveyed some meteorological data of vital importance to Russians. October, she announced, is an ideal time for bombing raids on Syria.

The average temperature is only 21C, there will be but three overcast days, the maximum precipitation is 7mm, and top wind speed is a meagre 15m/sec.

Any temperature below 35C, she explained, putting the desiccated data into context, is ideal for bombing, especially with little interference from the elements. She sounded like her Channel 4 colleague reassuring Londoners that the test match is unlikely to be rained off.

The bombing the young lady was talking about was old-fashioned blockbusters dropped from high-flying planes. Ever the traditionalists, the Russians only resort to laser-guided ordnance in four per cent of cases.

Other than that, it’s just indiscriminate slaughter. The tactic isn’t all bad, however, since, while high-altitude bombs may fall on wrong people, they’re unlikely to fall on a wrong country.

That’s more than can be said for Russian cruise missiles launched at Syria from 900 miles away. Anything the Yanks could do in Iraq, we can do better in Syria, said Vlad, pushing the button.

Unfortunately, four of his 26 missiles veered off course and hit Iran. The country affected didn’t make a big stink about it because the ayatollahs know that Vlad is their ally. Provided the other 22 missiles hit those infidel Sunni pigs, may Allah turn their mothers into toads, the ayatollahs were happy.

How the US forces will react if accidentally hit by stray Russian missiles is anybody’s guess. Suffice it to say that under such circumstances soldiers sometimes act impulsively rather than prudently.

The danger of accidental conflagration is high, and the choice of possible flash points is wide. Nato and Russia are facing each other in the Baltics, the Middle East, the Ukraine and Turkey. Statistics are beginning to work against us dying of old age.

Political talk shows on Russian TV offer an even greater entertainment value than the weathercasts. Semyon Bagdasarov, MP, the Duma’s Middle Eastern expert, stunned the audience of a top chat show with his erudition, supporting an unassailable syllogism:

Orthodox Christianity was born in Syria, specifically in Antioch. Russia is Orthodox. Ergo, he screamed triumphantly, “Syria is our land!”

This logic is hard to fault but easy to extend. Even though Antioch was indeed part of the Syrian tetrapolis at the time, making the parliamentarian’s claim irrefutable, it’s now in Turkey, which automatically makes this country “our land” too.

Then again, Antioch is only one Orthodox patriarchate. Rome, Jerusalem and Alexandria are others, and hence they clearly ought to belong to Russia by right.

Since Italy, Egypt and Israel may prove recalcitrant in the face of Vlad’s just demand that those cities be transferred to the Russian Federation, these countries must also receive their share of meandering cruise missiles.

Israel in particular should brace herself. Not only is she home to an Orthodox patriarchate, she’s also the birthplace of Christianity in general. Since Russia is the world’s last stronghold of that religion, Israel is clearly “our land”.

Also, let’s not forget the vast number of Israeli Russophones. Didn’t Vlad declare it his sacred duty to protect not just Russia, but the whole “Russian World”, which elusive term is defined in cultural and linguistic terms?

That’s Israel spoken for. And what about millions of Russians living in New York, Paris and London? And weren’t Poland and Finland parts of the Russian Empire? Aren’t Greece, Bulgaria and Serbia Orthodox even now, never mind back in ancient history?

When Russia’s hot, she’s hot. If she ever cools off, we’ll again live in an utterly boring world.











Cameron is the greatest PM we’ve ever had

Last night insomnia kicked in and, knowing it’s a losing battle, I decided not to fight it. Instead I got out of bed and read Mr Cameron’s speech in its entirety.

Much to my surprise, every word confirmed the view expressed in my title above. But judge for yourself: here are his key points.

“I have decided to dedicate my life to making Great Britain even greater. To this end it’s essential that my government work tirelessly towards fostering everything that moves us closer to that goal – and eliminating everything that holds us back.

“Hence I propose the following measures to be resolved during the life of this parliament:

“The original – or rather official – purpose of the EU was purely economic: promoting free trade among European nations. It has now become clear that its true purpose is political: the creation of a single European state.

“This end, however, is at odds with our ancient constitution, effectively undermining our sovereignty, depriving HMG of political legitimacy and taking ‘Great’ out of Britain.

“That’s why I intend to campaign with every means at my disposal for our leaving the EU, making its existing laws null and void in Britain and replacing them with a series of bilateral trade treaties.

“This will mean, among other things, reclaiming control over our borders and limiting immigration to sensible levels, as defined by our economic needs – and moral demands we find acceptable.

“While we are on the subject of the economy, so far we’ve been trying to cover cracks in the masonry with Osborne & Little wallpaper, meaning Osborne does little.

“I propose we address the structural defects by rolling back the welfare state, which, in addition to being an economic millstone around Britain’s neck, adversely affects the moral health of society.

“All benefits will henceforth be withdrawn from those who aren’t prevented from supporting themselves by infirmity or old age.

“At the same time, I’ll propose a law obligating the Exchequer to run surplus budgets until such time that our sovereign debt is cleared – and balanced budgets thereafter. Great Britain must pay her way.

“Even considering the increase in the defence and law-enforcement budgets that I’ll touch upon later, this will enable HMG to reduce drastically the tax burden on both individuals and businesses. That measure, like no other, has been shown to boost national prosperity.

“Our foreign policy must henceforth be dictated by national interests and them only. Powerful armed forces are essential to protecting our national interests, and I propose a two-fold increase in the defence budget designed to correct the negligence that governed our policy in the past.

“At the same time we undertake never to use our armed forces for foreign adventures that do nothing to promote our national interests.

“In order to restore the health of our ailing society, we must return to our Christian roots. This doesn’t mean enforcing our faith or persecuting others – but it does mean insisting that other faiths respect Christianity and adapt their own behaviour to the demands of Christian morality, which lies at the foundation of all our laws.

“At present one observes a growing Islamisation of Britain, both demographic and ideological. This I propose to combat mercilessly, to the point of reducing the number of mosques, which in my lifetime has increased by two orders of magnitude, banning Muslim propaganda and those Islamic practices that don’t agree with Britain’s religious, cultural and social tradition.

“Those found in violation shall be summarily deported, even if they hold British passports. Civil rights of which our nation is proud cannot protect our nation’s enemies.

“Law enforcement is another key area we must address. After all, protecting a nation both from external and internal dangers is the prime – some will say only – legitimate function of government. I shall encourage the CPO to seek maximum penalties for crimes, such as burglary, that at present routinely go unprosecuted and often uninvestigated.

“At the same time we must construct more prisons, making sure that lack of capacity will never again be an excuse for suicidal leniency.

“In staffing public offices, I shall promote the principle of equality, whereby all jobs should go to the most qualified candidates, regardless of their race, religion, sex or age. No group will be either discriminated against or – and this is the salient point – receive preferential treatment.

“The same principle will be applied to our universities, whose job should be creating the nation’s intellectual elite, not indulging in social engineering.

“Our primary and secondary education must also return to the standards set at the time when British education was the envy of the world, rather than its laughingstock.

“The false principle of equality ought to be abandoned and we must accept the empirically demonstrable fact that not all pupils are equally capable. Lumping them all together means holding back the intellectually gifted 25 per cent, humiliating the less gifted 25 per cent and boring everyone in the middle.

“Half a century of socialist experimentation has succeeded only in creating a nation of ignoramuses unable to function in any serious professional or civic capacity. That’s why we plan to restore the system of grammar schools, supplemented by a modern equivalent of secondary moderns…”

That’s the point at which I stopped reading, for a good reason. I woke up.