Category Archives: Musings

Fifty years ago…

July 1969, I was a science fiction loving schoolboy experiencing a feeling I have rarely felt since hearing the words “The Eagle has landed.” All around the world people shared this emotion and danced with joy as Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin piloted their Lunar Excursion Module dubbed ‘Eagle’ down from lunar orbit to the regolith of the lunar sea of tranquility.

My Dad and Mum understood my obsession with all things space and allowed me to stay up well past my mandatory bed-time to watch it all happen. From the power and glory of that singular Saturn V launch where the sound was not just heard but felt, listening avidly to each voice only transmission, the TV programme animations and real time images of the command module docking with the LEM, to the disengagement in lunar orbit and down to the moon’s surface. The suspense of being unable to sleep waiting until the following day for Neil Armstrong to step off that ladder and utter those epic words, even if he did fluff his lines a little. Then there was the will they, won’t they suspense of the LEM being able to claw it’s way out of Lunar gravity and orbit for docking and the long journey home to our precious little blue marble. See the documentary below.

Now I come across occasional people who say that they believe the momentous events I was witness to did not happen. They have even gone so far as to publicly harass people who were actually there. However, I’d like to share a little video of what went down when they tried that to an astronauts face (With a few repeats – just for fun) Bless you Dr Aldrin.

No one can convince me that the events of fifty years ago did not occur because I was alive and I watched it all happen in real time. In a time when video fakery was primitive and easily spotted.

Those joyous memories of shared human triumph are etched across my soul as deeply as if carved there. To insist otherwise against all the available and extensive evidence is utterly pathetic. The abject narcissism of such a position is barely worthy of pity.

Excuse me. Now I’m off to have another nice day. I shall shortly be all suited and booted on my own terrestrial rocket ship.

Sorry officer, I was just trying to reach escape velocity.

Advertisements

Raindrops on roses etc

Not much going on chez maison Sticker at present. A series of rainy days mean I haven’t been out riding as much as I’d like. Frankly I’m wondering where summer has gone.

I’ve learned that I’m gainfully employed for another year but to tell you the truth I’m considering jacking it in. That and Mrs S wants to move countries again. If I may be totally candid with you, migration is a tough business and I’m not looking forward to repeating the experience. All the faffing around with paperwork drove me nuts last time around. All the anxiety. The money we spent. All the time and exam passing. Keeping Mrs S on an even keel, not an easy job at the best of times. Chums, It almost broke me.

There’s a point in a man’s life when he just wants to do what he wants to do. Nothing more, nothing less. This isn’t a mid-life crisis, because my whole freaking life has been a crisis on one form or another. Usually caused by other people. Stuff I had no part in breaking, but which have suddenly become my responsibility to fix. So I’ve been doing my own thing.

I see Boris Johnson is now more or less acknowledged heir apparent for the UK Plc’s Prime Monstership. May sounds like she’s trying to sabotage him on her way out by putting avid remainers in key positions before she leaves. Talk about bad faith, but that’s what we’ve come to expect from the remain camp.

Had the 2016 referendum gone the other way by a similar margin, all us peasants would be expected to jolly well shut up and watch our home country strangled to death. However, the remainers don’t really believe in democracy unless the results suit them.

All us thickies who can see the damage the EU is doing get labelled as too stupid to vote. We don’t want to be ruled cradle to grave, having our every waking thought and word dictated by some ivory tower academic. We understand that life is messy and fundamentally organic. There are no clear cut answers and sometimes you just have to wing it. A deal has no clear rules because it’s a negotiation. So there.

Oh and something just dropped into my YouTube subscriptions. “How Norway dealt with Antifa.” Enjoy.

Let the cops off the leash. Let them arrest all the violent. Allow self-defence. Make the courts deal with the violent offenders. Jail time. Short 30 day sentences ramping up like for contempt of court seems to work.

Hey, I’ve just seen the weather forecast and the open road is singing a siren song. Now where did I put the Mutts keys? See ya.

Negative on that negativity, guys

For some time there’s been a growing mood of public mistrust with an overtly partisan media. I think it’s because they seem so out of step with the majority of people outside their bubble reality. You know, the ordinary folk who have actually grown up and just want to bring up their families, continuing the march of the generations. Making a living in our journey from nascence to decease and making sure it wasn’t all for nothing. Looking up at the stars and wondering, “Could we?” then having to turn our attention to whether we can get a parking space at work and dealing with the latest demand for shiny toys from the kids.

Personally I think they’re just prodding the bear to make it look like they’re actually doing something. Creating outrage for outrages sake. Nitpicking all the time like an abusive spouse. And they wonder why their circulation figures are falling off a cliff. To call their output ‘news’ is hyperbole of the highest order.

The real news you have to go digging for with a JCB Backhoe sometimes, and sometimes it just bursts out into the open. Aaand it’s another ‘child grooming / prostitution’ scandal which has been bubbling under for quite some time. This time the stakes are much higher than a Kebab house heroin operation. This time the story is about the rich and powerful abusing underage girls, blackmail, drugs and possibly even disposal of the ‘inconvenient’. Whether of course a prosecution happens is debatable because the chief lynchpin in the greater story is one Jeffrey Epstein, a well connected fixer who has so far escaped full prosecution because he has purportedly some very rich and powerful people going to bat for him, including a previous President of the USA and, some rumours include, his one-time presidential hopeful wife. So many of the wealthy left wing elite all spent time on Epstein’s private island, Little St James’ in the British Virgin Islands. I know, Virgin Isles, sometimes the irony just clangs, doesn’t it? It’s even more interesting that Epstein’s island mansion burned to the ground in 2018 after an earthquake. Convenient, no? Twice, if reports are to be believed.

Even more recently that Epstein’s Wikipedia bio page was heavily edited to remove certain references whilst retaining others and taking a sly sideswipe at the current president. Which is also suspicious. We can also see that the circle of complicity has widened. Daughter of pension fund stripper Robert Maxwell, Ghislaine Maxwell stands accused of procuring teenage girls for Epstein and friends.

For ordinary working people whose efforts keep the world turning, Trump is not the problem. They are the ones who voted the bad orange man in. The ‘deplorables’ behind ‘populism’. Those sneered at by the very ‘educated’ privileged class that brought forth people like Epstein. The ‘educated’ who gave us hate speech laws and the institutional fraud of ‘Global warming’ and carbon taxation. The ‘educated’ who call those who disagree names, as if that was an effective argument instead of just a cheap way of shutting up dissenters. To quote an old friend who chided me when I was full of myself one day; “You might have been to school, but you haven’t learned much, have you?” Education has it’s place, but is what is being taught really true?

Yet most of the press has ignored or downplayed the other, interconnected stories. We are at a point where the jigsaw puzzle begins to make sense. This isn’t conspiracy theory, the facts are emerging and the picture they reveal isn’t pretty. How power and privilege are too often abused to the detriment of the very people we are told they protect. How someone protesting about rape gangs can be thrown in prison for one thing, yet the paid lapdogs of the ‘official’ media get a pass for exactly the same behaviour at his trial. Indeed the mainstream media seem to be on the side of sex criminals. They seem to like rapists and abusers. Maybe certain of them are involved? Why else would they attack those trying to bring the disinfectant of sunlight to bear?

However, thanks to the free transfer of information over the jolly old Interweb, the villagers have become aware that monsters are in their midst and that the wicked who protect their own only have double standards. All the ordinary folk ever wanted was for the law to be applied consistently. For the sake of a little justice. Power and wealth should be seen as no protection from the law, or what good is that law? The law is either for everyone or it is for no-one.

Justice must be seen to be done or the pitchforks will end up asking the reasons why. Pointedly. I do not wish to see this happen, although if the political classes continue to go against their electorates and abuse their authority, well, it’s not a pretty picture.

Not feeling it

No doubt you’ve heard about the recent California earthquake and all the death and disaster that didn’t happen. Up here in the not so frozen Pacific north west we didn’t feel a thing, yet we too have been having Quakes up to 6.3 Magnitude only the other day. The thing is, all our quakes tend to be old school Canadian and happen hundreds of kilometres offshore so as not to, heavens forfend, disturb anyone.

As a matter of good housekeeping chez maison Sticker we have a fourteen day grab bag set by in case the big one really comes. Usual thing, blankets, fire starter, water, food, first aid kit. Not that we’re likely to need it. My fishing gear sits ready, then there’s my hunting kit. Must replace the arrow shafts and practice my archery skills a little more often, but that’s all. Might even put money by for a decent quality crossbow. My hunting points got lost in a house move, so they’ll need replacing and I have a small boot knife which can double as a butchery / skinning tool, so yes, we’re as prepared as we can be. There’s even a propane barbecue and a butane stove. No eating out of cans for us. Worst case scenario we’re dead and won’t care anyway, otherwise we’ll have food, water, communications and shelter.

Of course the mainstream media have tried to make a drama out of a minor crisis, but what the hey, they’re in showbiz, which is what most news is nowadays. Enough fact mixed in for credibilities sake, but the rest a hodge-podge of poorly informed speculation. The last big quake that hit Vancouver Island was in 1946 there were only two deaths. One from a heart attack and the other drowned when his dinghy got swamped. So colour me an old fogey for not feeling the fear. Whatever happens, we’ll cope.

A picture paints

Watching the news of late I’ve come to the conclusion that if I can’t add anything to the conversation, I won’t bother for the moment. Because reasons, okay? However, it’s occurred to me that I spend a good deal of time talking about my little deck garden but rarely take pictures, so here are a few for the edification of the general populace.

So let’s begin with the South aspect. Right to left beginning with the Lavender, Mint, Lemon tree plant Tea Rose, Geranium, Hosta, Berberis. Now from the back left to the front; Yew, Some form of variegated leaf thing Mrs S bought, a tussock of decorative grass, the Sage and Thyme, tucked down below another Lemon tree plant, up a bit to the Juniper and our other tea rose bush. The new rose at the back has about ten buds, but the older rose only three. The more observant will note a lemon tree plant snuggled between the Hosta, which has two stalks in the process of blossoming and the Berberis.
Note to self; make up a new batch of nectar for the Hummingbird feeder.

Right. So on to the Western railing where the discerning observer can look into the Fuchsia, three Lemon Tree plants which I raised from seed with me very own hands guv’nor, some Carnations, a dwarf Japonica and a decorative bamboo.
The brown box to the left is where we keep some rather straggly looking heather plants to fill a gap. Inside the box is a cushion which stayed dry all through the Winter. Which was a pleasant surprise, considering it was totally buried in snow for over two weeks.

So to the East wall where the barbecue lives. This is my experimental vegetable patch which is also home to the Sunflowers, Cannae Lilies and Lupins. Inset is a close up of our burgeoning Sunflower blossom. The more observant of you will notice a Strawberry plant, Habanero Pepper, Parsley, Kale, Radishes and even some Lettuce seedlings.

What else? Ah yes, the current state of play for my Grapefruit seedlings, three of which are doing fine, the fourth, well I don’t know what happened there. It started tiny and has continued to be so. No idea why. Such are the vagaries of growing things. It was the runt of the litter, but why it has stayed so is anybody’s guess.

In the outside world I see that the UK is still staggering around like a headless chicken because the politic’s don’t want to give up their sinecures. Not doing the value of the pound much good. The problem does not lie with BREXIT so much as the uncertainty of whether it will happen or not. Once that is resolved, matters can stabilise once more. My UK portfolio is taking a hit, but I’m hanging on to my Sterling investments to see what’s going to happen in October / November. What else? Justin Trudeau is still the most embarrassing leader in the world. The Chinese brushed him off at the G20 talks and all the silly clown can do is blather on about being a ‘feminist’. No wonder the rest of the world won’t take us seriously. We’re the only country in the world liable to disintegrate because the Western Provinces are sick of being abused by a bunch of effete urbanites. Plus ca chose, plus ca meme chose.

Well, the sun is shining. It’s Saturday and I’m off for a spin on the Mutt. See ya.

Well done that man

So some Tories (Suspended) actually have balls. Well done Mr Field. Some whiny-arse protester crashes your private function and starts berating everyone over an imaginary ‘crisis’ and gets manhandled for their pains. Boo-freaking-hoo. These crazy morons who think it’s okay to create ructions and disrupt the personal lives of others should get a little of what they’re constantly giving out in return. These annoying little shits commonly use harassment and assault against anyone who disagrees with them because Mummy and Daddy didn’t do the hard work of disciplining their child age three, so now society at large has to deal with these emotional retards, these overgrown toddlers who can’t get past emotional age eleven. Maybe if a few get what they deserve the rest of us wouldn’t have to put up with their narcissistic disruptions.

Sometimes I think Mott the Hoople had the only solution to these self centred shits who can’t show a little decorum and respect a democratic vote.

You wanted equal rights? Ah kiddies, you forget there’s equal wrongs too. Life taught me to never start a fight and (after learning the hard way one time) I never will, but finishing them is another matter.

On the subject of woman trouble, the possible next UK Prime Minister has just had some. Shouting and arguing was heard at the flat Boris Johnson shared with his notoriously green remainer girlfriend, not sure what for, but Bojo probably needs a new place of residence a.s.a.p. Having looked at the situation, frankly it’s better for the country if she was history, influences like that should be nowhere near the seat of UK power in the current climate and I’m sure Boris will find himself someone more amenable. Yes he’s a first class philandering dick from a sexual standpoint, but that doesn’t make him incompetent. All that bumbling amiable bluff and bluster is just a front. Whenever he’s been in a position of power he’s made a reasonable fist of things, unlike his successors. I might be reading this entirely wrong, but I do think he can deliver BREXIT and even possibly save the Tories from total electoral annihilation. Because if there is further delay, they will be toast at the ballot box.

Anyway, October 31st will be the proof and I will be in West London, possibly even mulling matters over in person with Tom Paine, a fellow blogger of long standing who writes The Last Ditch.

On the home front, the Mutt has developed an electrical fault which means the battery drains even when everything is switched off, so back to the shop it goes for a little electrical TLC. I think I know what the answer is, but I’ll leave it to the boys with spanners to confirm my suspicions.

The Deck garden has been too windy to sit out in, which is a shame as otherwise the weather has been quite nice and our new rose bush has a set of burgeoning blossoms which look like they will be adding another splash of colour to the mini-jungle outside our kitchen doors. Our two Sunflowers have passed the metre tall mark and one is already developing a flower head. Which is nice. The Lemon Tree plants are growing new leaves and an accident with a seed packet means the planter that was once graced by the pansies might have anything coming up. We shall see. Life has to have some adventure.

Oh what the hell, it’s the weekend. Mine’s a large glass of Cabernet Sauvignon. Mrs S will enjoy the odd Vodka and Tonic. We at least are civilised folk, well her more than me.

TTFN

One last item, serious props to Donald Trump for not doing the whole ‘Bomb, bomb Iran’ thing. Apparently he pulled back from retaliating for that shot down surveillance drone after asking “How many casualties?” and getting the answer “One hundred and fifty Mr President.” Which would have only escalated the problems in that area. Good. We could do with a whole lot less mindless military retaliation in this world. World wars are not much fun.

On the other hand, if the provocations keep on coming, then the gloves can come off, but not before.

Update: Re the Mutt. My beautiful big blue motorcycle has a duff battery. Which is kind of odd as I asked and paid for a brand new one to be fitted when I bought it. Has someone not been entirely honest with me? Enquiring minds would like to know. Then theres being deprived of riding time. Not impressed. Not impressed at all. Warranty, warranty, who’s got the warranty? Oh yes. Me.

Gestures

When travelling the roads of the world, some of you will notice that many motorcyclists wave to each other as they pass. There are several forms of gesture, from the nod, to the upright hand wave, drop-v and left boot wiggle. What is the significance of these gestures and who does them? Well I don’t think there’s an official version, but the style of gesture, and who uses them varies greatly depending upon who you are and where you’re from.

Mostly these gestures are about recognition of status between bikers. Whenever I’m out and about on the Mutt, I’ve noticed that the gestures are most widespread amongst those riding European style. The observant among you will also register that North American Harley riders for example very rarely acknowledge anyone unless they’re riding another Massey Ferguson Harley Davidson. Even so, the habit is not widespread among them. Some people think there’s a certain cachet to owning a Harley, personally I disagree. Yes, those big old v-twins have lots of low down grunt, but back in the day, some of the guys I knew who bought them said the electrics were worse than Ducatis, Anyway, that’s by the by. Generally speaking, Harley riders rarely salute anyone but other Harley or Indian riders.

To be honest, there’s often a bit of snobbery here. There is a partisan faction that believes Harleys are the only machine worth having and that ‘rice burners’ (Honda, Suzuki, Kawasaki etc, even BMW’s) are not fit to share the same roads. So, fellas, you’re not Marlon Brando fans then? He rode a 1950 Triumph Thunderbird 6T (Not a Speed Twin – cheers Ripper) in the iconic bike flick ‘The Wild one‘. To which I would also add; screw you, I’ve ridden in every weather condition short of a Tornado for over three freaking decades and I’ll ride what I do because it works for me. Don’t need your permission. Go way son, you’re bothering me.

However, the thought does occur that the feet out high handlebar ‘Easy rider’ style adopted by many big V-Twin riders is not exactly conducive to making hand gestures. Perhaps they don’t gesture because it is too difficult to take one hand off the handlebars while in motion, unlike the European style of machine that is increasingly common over here in BC, which is more stable and allows the rider a free left hand.

The etiquette, if such a word can be applied to rough, tough motorbikey types is that only those who ‘live to ride’ or are serious about their riding tend to give these gestures. Never in town, too many hazards. Generally these gestures are only made while on the open road and in motion. Of course if you’re purely a weekend warrior or the rider of a smaller machine like a Honda cub or similar, no one expects it. Nor is there any acknowledged requirement to do so. It’s just the done thing. A salute, a tip of the hat, the acknowledgement of a kindness, a recognition. That’s mostly all it is. We are simply acknowledging our difference from the common herd.

Because let’s face it, riding a motorcycle and surviving for any length of time, in itself is the mark of an individual cut from less common cloth. More switched on. Motorcyclists have to be vastly more alert than most car drivers because we have to do their observing for them. Don’t argue this point, a rider who is inattentive or careless soon pays the penalty because all those idiots in tin boxes are mostly that, idiots. They fiddle with radios, take cell phone calls without hands free, drink coffee, argue with passengers, don’t bother to look or indicate when turning or changing lanes and all other manner of inattentiveness which is the biggest killer on the road. Forget drunk driving or speeding, the biggest cause of all road casualties is the air between the ears, which motorcycle riders, at a deeply visceral level, understand all too well. Which is why so many of us often acknowledge each other. It’s a badge of pride. Of commonality. A kind of “Well done, you’re still breathing. Keep it up.”

As for the type of gesture, this varies from place to place. I’ve seen everything from a sidelong nod to the very French left boot wiggle, but let’s deal with the main ones;


The standard wave; raised left hand upright, palm forward, fingers closed. This is very old school and the most primitive of gestures in the riders lexicon. It just means “Hi.” between riders. Nothing more.


The low wave; fingers loosely spread, thumb out. A general low energy greeting. Meaning; all is cool from whence I have come.


The drop vee; A very continental European variant. Originally from France and Italy (I think). Sort of an upside down V for Victory with the thumb held wide. A more exuberant version of the low wave. General greeting of coolness. Even Bike cops have been observed making this gesture.

The low thumbs up; No image as this is self explanatory. Thumb up, wrist rotated back. Bit of a Fonzie “Heeeyyy!” gesture. Sort of a “Nice day for riding” gesture.
The low wave repeated as though patting; This does have a specific meaning, it means “Slow down” it warns of a hazard ahead. Might be a speed trap, might be a crack up. Take care.
The left boot wiggle; as is suggested. Left boot off footpeg, leg angled out, foot briefly wiggled. Very Francais this. Tres continental. Means ‘thank you’ or ‘murky buckets’ depending on your native tongue. This gesture is almost universal in France and is given to both other riders and car drivers for giving way or any other courtesy.

Well folks, it’s another nice BC day and I will be taking Mrs S out for a spin later after I’ve watered the plants and had breakfast. If anyone can add to the above, the rest of us await enlightenment.

Small home truths

Barbecued steak day yesterday. I had a nice slab in the freezer and we were tired of chicken, so Mrs S and I dined on flat-iron steak with a nice green salad. Our fifty buck propane barbecue has been doing sterling service, and there’s something of a cachet to cooking outdoors. The steak was ably washed down with a nice 2015 Argentinian Rioja. A little tingly in the mouth, but which slipped down as slickly as silk knickers. Very nice.

While the meat was cooking I dead headed carnations and inspected our other plants. The Pansies I fear, are past their best, but that’s life, isn’t it? The bad news is that my planted Sweet William has been strangled by the Pansies. Well we can’t have that. A trial has been held, guilty verdict returned and sentence carried out. Replanting will be required. May the Lord have mercy on their wretched little souls.

Further on the downside, a nasty shock greeted me in my email inbox this morning. A booking that we made back in February for our forthcoming London visit was arbitrarily cancelled by our hotel booking service. No reason, just a “Your booking has been cancelled” message, which left me struggling for replacement accommodation in the smoke. A family conference was immediately convened and the situation resolved. To be honest, there’s been something nagging at my hindbrain for the last couple of months that was saying “This isn’t Kosher” about that specific booking, so it’s nice to see my instincts vindicated yet again. Anyway, within two hours travel plans were adapted, new accommodation booked and we were back on track for our original dates for Autumn 2019. Might even get to watch the fireworks for Guy Fawkes night before we leave. I may even have saved five hundred bucks, so, swings and roundabouts. We’re all good on that front. Major league kudos incidentally to booking.com.

We’re also being plagued by mystery booming noises. About seven so far this morning. Probably sonic booms from the USAF going supersonic over the Pacific, maybe meteors coming in overhead but definitely not construction, that has a different sound altogether. The low pitched booming noises we’ve been hearing have been quite loud enough to rattle my office windows. So I checked the seismograph feeds, just in case there was an earthquake, but no. Couldn’t be meteors, as the Eta Aquarids were in early May and the Perseids aren’t due until August. So it’s probably some kind of supersonic aircraft out of Puget Sound Naval base. Boom-boom.

What else? Bitchute has been playing up of late. Video’s wouldn’t play and a few people were saying that the platform might be under attack, others that the increased traffic necessitated a major upgrade. Which if true is no surprise. Bitchute is rapidly becoming a refuge for those video creators YouTube don’t want. Or that Alphabet Inc (Owners of Google, YouTube etc) think their advertisers don’t want. The truth is that Alphabet want anodyne. Alphabet want ‘safe’, inoffensive. Funny cat and dog video’s. Which is where they think the money is, but that isn’t the content their market was built on. That was built by the very unsafe citizen journalist vloggers, comedians, gamers and commentators. It’s like watching a company that fires it’s top earning people for no good reason then watch the board stand around wondering where all those lovely profits went.

Although in Alphabet’s defence it’s common knowledge that online platforms, some advertisers and even credit card companies have come under pressure from certain activist media outlets, partially because said media outlets get money for pushing a certain world-view to rid YouTube etc of it’s most engaging voices, partly just to see the world burn. It’s also true that legacy media is increasingly under even more financial pressure from the new media, like the citizen journalists and gamers of YouTube. Now these ‘professional’ media types see all the advertisers paying what they see as their much sought after moolah to a bunch of upstarts who, horror of horrors, never went to journalism school. What must sting even more is legacy media watching advertisers paying these upstarts for poking fun at legacy media misrepresentations, bias and omissions, leaving the mainstreams credibility more full of holes than a good Emmental cheese. All the time the mainstream have been scrabbling for eyeballs they could sell to advertisers whilst watching their ratings sink like a torpedoed cruise liner. So the advertisers have been quietly cutting their legacy media spending, because what’s the point of advertising on a platform whose best days are long behind it? YouTube will follow. Personally, I’d sell my Alphabet Inc stock while the value is still relatively good. The market has peaked. Time for some serious profit taking before the crunch comes.

The penny is currently dropping like a rock that the relentless output of left leaning media, with it’s deranged hatred of all things heterosexual and north European is deeply unattractive to much of the eveyday public. As a result CNN has become a shrinking market. As are most of the main cable and digital news platforms, apart from the much maligned Fox News, who are smart enough to see which way the wind is blowing. For the rest, mass redundancies are becoming the order of the day. Huffington Post, Vox etc are all feeling the pinch.

Tim Pool has an interesting take on what’s going on.

In a bid to kill off the competition in the vain hope those straying consumer eyeballs will somehow come back to them, certain media outlets have resorted to using underhand tactics to silence anyone who isn’t them, because frankly me deario’s, many YouTubers have been effortlessly waxing the bums of the self appointed journalistic classes. People like CNN have been losing viewer ratings big time and desperate money men will have given out orders to shut down these upstart YouTubers by fair means or foul. Since these people don’t really do fairness, they have gone straight for the low foul tackle. Play the man, not the ball. Don’t present evidence or have a debate, that’s boring. Just go for the juicy Ad Hominem. Libel those unable to defend themselves. Sell the drama of Nazi’s behind every bush, which is a strange thing to do because there just aren’t enough real ‘Nazi’s’ to go around. Then apply the tactic of accuse, accuse, accuse, ‘expose’ with no real evidence, ‘out’ or Doxx, making people’s personal lives public so selectively that even Christopher Robin might look like Satan incarnate. Imagine such a headline; “Christopher Robin parties with animals – scandals of the hundred acre wood exposed” with some salacious insinuations about paedophilia, honey pots and bestiality in the first two paragraphs, the clickbait headline of which would be subsequently contradicted in the last lines of the headlined article. Which most people wouldn’t read as far as without suffering a bad attack of WTF! Then the story gets passed on in a game of Chinese whispers which only present the accusations as fact, not the original clickbait titled story in full. So the lie travels and the outrage machine roars into life.

You might think that this all sounds a bit tin foil hat, but I can cite at least six real live people whose well-meaning contact with the mainstream media has seriously screwed with their lives. Ergo, I don’t trust ‘Journalists’. One of the few pieces of wisdom my Dad imparted to me that stuck was “Don’t believe all that you read in the papers”. This would seem to be ever more apt as the blatant spin and news management has even polluted the pages of the Financial Times. Excuse me chums, I pay my FT subscription for hard information, not for some affectioned time-pleasers half baked opinion.

Of course the politicians go along because they need the media mouthpiece to get them votes so they can keep, in the immortal words of Mel Brooks’ corrupt William J LePetomane in Blazing Saddles “Their phoney-baloney jobs.” Which is why left of centre politicians are so keen to shut anyone with a ‘non-mainstream’ viewpoint down. They get their airtime from grateful legacy media platforms. It does not matter that otherwise innocent people end up getting defamed and even thrown in jail for ‘hate speech’ (Which is being defined by some very thin skinned individuals) Who cares? Gimme, gimme, gimme.

Stuff it. It’s too nice a day not to go riding. TTFN

The Motorcycle diet

As my one remaining reader will know, I’m a biker. One who passed his motorcycle test three years before he took and passed his car test. I’ve ridden everything from a beat up Honda 175 to a full sized sports tourer, which is what I have at present. 1261 wonderful cc of genteel fun. It’s a big dog, currently securely chained up in the yard under cover. It gets plenty of exercise and gives me a fair bit too. Which is why I am currently losing weight quite rapidly.

The thing is about riding a motorcycle is that unlike driving a car or truck, it is a dynamic process. Every time you corner for example, your whole body has to be involved, in my case piloting a machine almost two and a half times my current body weight. There’s no power steering, no gadgets (Apart from heated handlebar grips), just bodyweight dynamically managing a heavyweight machine along uneven roads and some fairly tight uncambered bends.

The process of positioning your body correctly for a bend takes effort which is not unlike the philosophy behind ‘hot’ yoga. Even at relatively sedate speeds, shoulders set, knees cuddling the tank, it takes a a fair bit of energy to swoop, apparently effortlessly, through repeated bends. Then there’s the loss of body heat which means you can burn quite a few calories keeping up even within the space of a two hour ride. Think of it this way. What might be a warm day standing still can get decidedly chilly over sixty miles an hour, so even fairly well insulated you can burn up a whole heap of energy simply keeping warm, thus losing weight as your body goes through those calories like a blast furnace.

Add to that a fairly high protein, low carbohydrate way of life and weight loss is guaranteed. I call it ‘the motorcycle diet’. It works. At least for me.

Anything in the news? Not really, just the usual bunch of suspects getting bent out of shape over Trumps state visit to the UK. That idiot Sadiq Khan didn’t attend the state dinner, neither did Corbyn. Jesus H Christ on a moped! Are these people so devoid of intellect and statecraft that they shut themselves out of the party. While Liz and Trump were celebrating the alliance between the UK and the USA and deals were quietly being discussed, a bunch of incompetents were trying to virtue signal that because ‘orange man bad’ this somehow excused them being utterly atrocious at their jobs. Then the credulous morons who can’t be bothered to do their own research and see how well the USA is doing under Trump turn up en masse to complain. These would be the same people who ‘think’ that man made climate change is a physical threat to humanity despite the continual failure of their end of the world prophesies and that Socialism isn’t a bad idea despite a century of failure. Newsflash kiddies; if you believe what the bought and paid for media tell you, that ain’t ‘thinking’.

Oh well, I look at it this way. In order for a certain number of people to be of above average intelligence, there have to be a whole heap who are dumber than a bag of sponge rubber rocks. It’s a simple rule of averages. Like what we have taken to calling ‘Emotional Literacy’, like reading ages, some people only get as far as an emotional age of 11, others make 13, fewer still 17 and the very few emotional maturity.

Mrs S and I had a broad and in depth discussion on an associated topic last night. She came back from a conference at UVIC yesterday and we had an interesting exchange of views about childhood trauma and how it impacts people. “You control your impulses very well, Bill.” She observed. Yes, she knows I’m damaged goods, but I know precisely where and how I’m damaged and try to take a breath before simply reacting. It passes for wisdom sometimes. And that pertikular commodity, me deario’s, is where you finds it.

Is that the sun shining? So it is. Time to shed another pound of two.

Playing the game

Had a little run in with a lefty the other day and something occurred to me. They were couching their arguments to make me look like a bad person just because of the skin I’m in, and afterwards I heard the term “Anglophobe” in a discussion of Orwell’s ‘Notes on Nationalism’, which perfectly described my opponents arguments.

They were behaving and speaking in a manner that was openly racist against people of my skin colour. So by their own twisted logic they were being exactly what they claimed I was, simply because of my age and racial characteristics, which as any fule kno are simply successful adaptations to colder climes. If those from other climes stick around in northern Europe for a few thousand years their descendants will all become paler because that’s how natural selection goes.

The find of Cheddar man points in this direction. The DNA says he had darker skin than current North European and a lot of people in the area share similar genetic alleles, well, that proves evolution works on fairly small timescales, comparatively speaking. This also fits in with my observation that a few old county families reputed to have “A lick of the tar brush” (some distant non-European ancestry) as it was once known, look almost exactly the same as all the other inhabitants of rural Britain. This is probably more common that most acknowledge. My own DNA ancestry contains a mix of Celt, Pict, North and Southern European and even a few outliers that are common across Persia. So my ancestors didn’t hang around the old place watching the inbreeding stack up, they got out there and mingled. Yet to look at me you would think I was solid North European through and through.

But to listen to my verbal assailant, you would think I was some kind of white supremacist monster. Which is not true. In real life I’m as amiable a chap as any other, willing to take as I find and deal accordingly. Yes, I can use rough language, but that’s my shop floor upbringing, there’s no harm in it. My grudges are rarely nursed unless the opposition is so hostile I must never trust them again. But the sheer Anglophobia exhibited by my assailant was a little hard to stomach because they were actively trying to push my buttons, make me angry with their constant Anglophobic assertions. In the end I shut up, gave them a hard look, which they ignored (A bad move) then asked “Is that all?” in a rather tart tone of voice before turning away from their racist tirade and got on with the rest of my day.

The thing is, my verbal assailant was just recycling ‘intellectual’ talking points, which are Anglophobic arguments Orwell would have been familiar with. There are some very well ‘educated’ people who cling to these assertions and are even English by birth. I don’t get it. Why hate your homeland so much? I don’t. It’s not perfect, but it’s where I’m from. As was the person who was giving me grief over my accent. Which I found rather ironic. They were probably ‘Whiter’ than I am. And I ask myself, is this naked hate against those who are of British / English heritage some kind of transposed anger against distant / oppressive parenting? By hating the English / British these Anglophobes are actually railing against their parents? Their Mum and Dad fucked them up so they just have to spread the shit around? Because feelz? As a by-blow I’ve noticed that people advancing this kind of argument have to break down all resistance before they even advance one single cogent thought. Which makes turning their own tactics against them all the more delicious. Anglophobia is naked racism and I like to remind people of this now and again. A kind of trolling of trolls.

Frankly, as I get older I tend to have less and less patience with this kind of person and will cut them off as soon as possible with all the irony and sarcasm at my disposal. Sometimes the word “Really? That’s rather Anglophobic isn’t it?” Delivered in a sharp or world weary tone is enough to chop them off at the knees. Or to use the more modern vernacular “Seriously?” It’s often no use arguing point by point, there’s rarely anything coherent in their arguments. It’s just puppy like emotion spilling all over the place which should thus be treated with the rolled up newspaper of contempt and an hour or two of being pointedly ignored.

So yes, I too can play the victimhood game, although I’d rather not because I’m not a victim. I’m just me.

The gift of laughter

Downtown today, I managed to find a copy of the Sunday Times, which sparked off one of those conversations between Mrs s and I. About a particular kind of laughter.

Now Mrs S and I laugh with each other all the time. She takes the rise out of me unmercifully, which I allow. We find this makes for a healthy relationship. We have the gift of laughter. This not only feels right, but buoys us both up when dealing with the many cerebrally challenged we come across in our day to day lives. Our shared laughter has become an essential mutual inoculation against the many petty evils of this world. We are even able to laugh at ourselves. Which make the “Aw-shee-it!” moments which occasionally punctuate our lives more bearable.

By laugh I mean what Lyall Watson, in his book ‘Supernature‘, once described as ‘the soul laugh’. Not the appalling “That is so funn-ee” beloved of retarded High school sophomores or the tittering near-sneer of dinner party faux-intellectual dweebs. That is feigned laughter. Made by people who don’t know how to let the humour get deep into their inner being. Made by people who go to comedy clubs and really shouldn’t because they ruin it for everyone else. The people I refer to are often found berating the stage act for breaching some strange moral code or challenging the audience members belief systems. In the clubs I often get irritated by these arrogant little shits and often think that people who don’t really get humour could do with a very large brick over the head to try and knock some sense into them. These are the people who I have nothing but contempt and increasingly rarely, pity for. The walking damned. Those who are forever unable to get it. Those who exclude themselves and because they cannot understand humour, forever try to exclude everyone else and prevent them telling jokes that are even remotely funny.

A soul laugh is by contrast a bucket of ice water over the head, a fresh mountain stream, a cloudburst of emotional catharsis. This kind of laugh washes the spirit clean and destroys all those poisonous little shibboleths the perpetually offended would clutter our lives with. It defuses tense situations and the daftest thing can trigger an attack. And it is predominantly male. A sign of relaxation, of being at ease with your inner core. It cannot be faked and when properly shared, soul laughter bonds and unites. Offence evaporates. One of life’s great sadnesses is that so few females really understand its necessity. I count myself blessed because my wife is one of those who actually does.

The thing is, to the weak, fearful and immature, soul laughter is frightening and therefore to be suppressed at all costs. There is nothing more dangerous in the eyes of a would-be oppressor than a full blown soul laugh. Because the soul laugh is literally spit in their eyes. It’s the only sane response when those wielding power think they have broken all resistance. It can be found even on the final scaffold when death is inevitable, because well, what the hell, what have you got to lose? A soul laugh is also a great defiant middle finger to those who perpetuate lies because it says; “I’m not taking you seriously – motherfucker.”

Stalin, Mao, Castro, Pol Pot and Hitler weren’t big fans of humour, especially when it was directed at them. Which is why Russians used to be so habitually gloomy and Germans only had a very shaky grasp of what was actually funny. All their best comedians ended up in concentration camps or Gulags. Or worse, shot and consigned to mass graves.
My favourite Russian joke goes;
Prisoner: “I don’t understand, the judge gave me twenty years. I’m innocent of any crime!”
Gulag Guard: “Twenty years comrade? You must have done something.”
Prisoner: “I don’t know. All I did was call Stalin an idiot.”
Gulag Guard: “Ah, there you go comrade. Revealing state secrets.”

What we need is more jokes directed at the hate speech laws themselves. To demonstrate how unpopular these things are to left-leaning politicians, who really only want popularity, because that is the path to power, and power is all they really crave. A really good joke would be to wipe out the Tories, the Limp Dems and Labour in the forthcoming EU elections and bury the Canadian Liberal party. Then if they don’t learn the lessons, hand out a really sound electoral kicking at every possible opportunity, directing a humiliating barrage of soul laughter at the totalitarian bar stewards. Just to drive the point home good and hard.

There will be arrests, but this could become the benchmark to every aspiring stand-up comedians career, getting nicked for hurting some humourless buggers feelings. Look at Count Dankula. He went from unknown Communist comedian to overnight celebrity and MEP candidate. Yes, I thought the whole Nazi Pug thing was a great gag, if a bit tasteless. As for Sargon’s sidelong jibe at the awful scarecrow like figure of Labour MP Jess Phillips. Well I wouldn’t want to either. I know it’s not wise to look at the mantelpiece whilst stoking the fire in certain cases, but a blindfold and last cigarette might be more useful at that particular juncture. Double-euw. If given the option I’d rather hump Worzel Gummidge.

Treason May on the other hand increasingly looks like a piece of badly stuffed Victorian taxidermy. I’ve also noticed that Justine Turdeau could pass for a very close relative of a certain Mr Schickelgruber if he were to grow a toothbrush moustache. As for Hildebeast Clinton, yeaah. Shades of a reanimated Eva Braun there. Occasionally Cortex resembles one of puppeteer Jim Hansens worst nightmares as might be animated by Director Tim Burton. She’s certainly got the intellect for it. Only just though.

Notwithstanding, it could be argued that the soul laugh is nature’s greatest gift to humanity because of it’s role in both breaking down aggression and bringing down the tyrannical. It could also be argued that such laughter damages people who are basically not really grown up enough to live in the real world. Then there is the moot point that a bloody good laugh is worth having at the downfall of the unrighteous, unfaithful and divisive. Go on, have a guess at who I’m talking about. There are two right answers. One for the UK, one for Canada. They can pass all the anti-free speech laws they want, but the soul laugh will always find a way to it’s intended target.

What is man?

Now that the weather is getting warmer, I’m finding there is less to do workwise and more spare time to read. The good news being that the company I work for like what I do enough to keep me on and enlarge my role, while giving me a pay rise. Which is nice. Paying attention to detail does pay off. But then I’ve always had a certain faculty with numbers, which is part of how I earn a crust. Ensuring A gets B in good time without too much trouble to C and not bothering D with the fine detail. Which people appreciate.

At this juncture I’m feeling a tad philosophical. Let me enlarge, my current reading matter is the Essays of Michel De Montaigne, a sixteenth century philosopher and humanist. There are quite a lot of them, but they contain delightful little musings on the nature of pedagogy and also of cannibal societies, amongst many other things. A curiously fluid style, very modern and readable. If transplanted to today’s society, I think he would do just fine, after a short pause for acclimatisation of course. What he would make of Social Media I have no idea.

Michel De Montaigne
Statue of Michel De Montaigne, Paris
This statue, which I recall from my last visit to Paris, is an image of what shines through his writing. That of a true gentleman who pays very close attention to what is going on around him and treats said matters with the amusement (And occasional mockery) they so richly deserve.

There is much I find admirable in his writing. Very down to earth. Fond of quoting Cicero, Juvenal and Propertius to make his point, but in a way that is gently mocking of pomposity. Very humane. His use of their quotations is not used as a bludgeon to any readers sensibilities, but rather utilises the delicacy of a fine surgeons scalpel, subtly dissecting and separating rather than amputating ideas. Seeing humans for the fallible creatures we are, prone to self delusion and irrationality. Looking at differing cultures and finding the admirable rather than the negative.

Some of his work echoes in Shakespeare from Hamlet (Act 2 Scene 2);

What a piece of work is a man, how noble in reason, how infinite in faculties,
in form and moving how express and admirable,
in action how like an angel, in apprehension how like a god!

Which appeared to be common ideas during the late 1580’s. Indeed Shakespeare may well have have come into contact with people who had actually read Montaigne and sparked these thoughts off in him. There is even a branch of scholarship that claims old Bill from Stratford culled some of his best speeches direct from translations of Montaigne’s work. I’m not surprised. Shakespeare seems to have collated some of his best work from other sources, filed off the serial numbers and claimed it as his own. No need for conspiracy theories about a grammar school boy from an obscure midlands market town not being capable of writing as he did, all Shakespeare needed was a translated volume of Montaigne’s work, a little dramatic flair and hey presto!. Job’s a good ‘un. No rich noblemen from Oxford needed. Half Shakespeare’s work was already done for him.

Now all the above does not get me where I wanted to go. I ask the question, “What is man?” mainly because I often hear some very ill-informed and perhaps callous people say that ‘mankind is a cancer’. Which is not true. Indeed such statements tend to come from that part of humanity who have held a tiny mirror up to existence and then short sightedly tried to chop off all the bits that won’t fit. I leave the task of identifying these poisonous philosophies to my last remaining reader. Personally I think that when these people say; mankind is a cancer, they mean everyone else but them. Which is rather selfish and nihilistic, but that too is part of the human condition.

Coming from a very rural area and having grown up in houses with largish gardens, I tend to take a contrary view of what humanity is. As a gardener I firmly believe that Humanity is the steward of the Earth, vital for it’s good management. Paying attention and making the most of what we have whilst being aware that this small blue marble spinning in the infinity of the Universe could do quite adequately without us. Even if the end result looked rather scruffy and was prone to being re-sculpted by every single natural disaster that came it’s way. Which we could ameliorate the effects of by not building on active volcano’s, managing flood plains and just taking a little care with our leavings before ending up as the next layer of fossils. Oh and looking out for any pesky bits of space rock that might prove an inconvenience. Despite my often voiced misgivings, I actually quite like humanity. People are by turns entertaining and infuriating, fascinating in their ordinary lives and when not completely up themselves a source of constant amusement.

We are the one known animal to have developed tool using intelligence to the point where we actively manage our own environment and able to take the first faltering steps off this little ball of rock. Which is a task we might do better if we stopped clinging to some very inaccurate ideas and did a little due diligence. Managing, not protecting. Farming, not asset stripping. Creating more from less. Doing a bit of joined up thinking. Letting people get on with their lives. Yes, yes, I know, but it’s a fantasy I like to entertain from time to time. There still burns a minuscule guttering candle in the darkness of my heart. The last contents of Pandora’s box. A dusty little shrivelled husk of hope. It’s the writing of people like Montaigne that keeps that very singular part of me alive.

Peak wank


When he gets going, Rod Liddle does have such a beautifully succinct turn of phrase. ‘Peak wank’ describes so many things, from the Twatter hate mobs going after people’s employers and families to crazily oppressive “Hate speech” laws. Don’t even get me started on biological men ‘identifying’ as women and competing directly against women, thus effectively destroying women’s sports.

Oh what the hell, it’s a wet old day up here in not so sunny left coast BC and even Mrs S is suggesting we up sticks and migrate somewhere saner yet again. The problem is that the madness is almost global, at least as far as the Anglosphere is concerned, and there’s no sanctuary for the sane.

The lunatics have the keys to the asylum and they’re shitting all over the walls and floors without let or hindrance. The people we voted (or not voted) into office have been infected with the virus of affected virtue and in order to pander to minorities for an ever-slimmer slice of the vote no longer listen to their constituents, just the NGO’s and focus groups who are setting the world ablaze with their lunacies. The lunatic NGO’s who get their money from vested interests like the Rockefeller and Tides foundations or the Saudis in order to weaken the west and make it easier for their masters to operate unhindered. All the NGO’s have to do is push the great lies.

When I say great lies (peak wank) I mean the following;

Man made climate change is destroying the planet Like it’s failed to do since the 1970’s.
Men and women are the same Tell my wife that.
The wage gap Hang on, if ‘men and women are the same’, then why is this even an issue?
White supremacy / patriarchy / privilege Right. Where’s my membership? I never got one.
It’s all the fault of boomers / old white men right. So my poor life choices are someone else’s fault?
Wealth redistribution Oh really? To whom should the West’s wealth be bled off to and where will it really go?
Do as I say, not as I do protesters Like ‘Climate Change’ activists who still take foreign holidays and fly everywhere.
Insert own ‘ist’ or ‘phobia’ here………..

/sarcmode

On the upside, I now have four one inch tall Grapefruit seedlings and the biggest of the lemon tree plants I started last year is now slightly over twenty inches tall (over half a metre! Yikes!) Oh yes, and the Albertans have joined the political pendulum swing away from peak wank toward sanity.

But you may ask, has this site reached peak sarcasm? I would answer; that has yet to be seen.

There is an old saying…

… that “it is better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to open your mouth and remove all doubt.” First coined by an author called Maurice Switzer, not Mark Twain or Franz Kafka. However, according to my loyal team of word jugglers and Thesauri hunting Igors this saying has roots that go back to the Old Testament (Proverbs 15:2 & Solomon 17:28).

Sunday was a very strange day which had Mrs S and I wondering aloud why we actually bother sometimes.

First we went to have lunch with an old family friend to find that enough marbles have rattled out to God knows where to the point that our lunch out didn’t happen. Despite having confirmed our time of arrival over the phone the night before, old family friend had forgotten all about us and buggered off to lunch with someone else without a bye, leave or thank you. So we slipped off and purchased a coffee and cookie type of snack without her. Mrs S was visibly upset as she has known old family friend since she was ten and we have always considered friend as part of our extended family. Yet the person we met today was showing definite signs of cognitive decline, forgetting names, relationships and other things we’ve had in common for years. For my own part I was halfway expecting this, and had steeled myself mentally for the encounter. Many people forget things, but they don’t often repeat themselves four times in a twenty minute conversation. Not unless they’re trying to sell you something.

After that we dropped by at sister in law’s place where the aforementioned proverb was well and truly put through the axiom tester. Brother in law was in full remainer rant mode over BREXIT wanting the overthrow of parliament and the abandonment of democracy. When I politely enquired about what he would put in the place of the UK’s Parliament, he said he didn’t care. If he couldn’t have his way to stay in the slave-state of the European Union, the baby had to be thrown out with the bathwater and fuck the consequences. This is an allegedly educated man with no job and a Bachelor’s degree. Old thickie me, who has two jobs and no degree, begs to differ. I think the benefits of the undemocratic EU superstate have been massively oversold and it’s on the way out. Notwithstanding, we made our excuses and left.

We’re back at home now and Mrs S is soothing her ruffled feathers with a large glass of red and a couple of episodes of CSI, season twelve on Amazon Prime. For my part, having heard his irrational remainer arguments, I need a bloody good shower and need to scrub my skin clean from the inside.

Trying to look on the bright side, a few more seedlings have broken surface in our deck garden and will be providing us with fresh flowers, herbs and vegetables throughout Summer and well into Autumn, before we head on over to jolly old Londinium to see what all the fuss is about.

Oh well, the working week beckons and I need a serious drink.

Looking for signs of growth

Have potted out the three of my Grapefruit plant seeds that have successfully germinated. They have now taken up station on my office windowsill where I will trust to the magic of sunlight and moisture to bring forth life. My two avocado nuts have put rootlets into the water, however, I won’t be doing anything with them for at least another month. Not until either plant has put out at least two serious leaves and roots of over an inch (oh all right, twenty five point four millimetres) long. Outside my radish and beetroot seeds have already pushed tiny green leaves above the soil, and the first signs of life are showing in the herb tray. Which isn’t bad. Elsewhere the soils surface seems as lifeless as the moon, but I take it as an article of faith that something is stirring. The next week will tell.

This sets the current tenor of my day. Work has slacked off and I’m left pottering about our deck garden, watching stuff germinate, which doesn’t take up much of the day but is an essential task nonetheless. Watched pots don’t boil but on the other hand, the secret of life, as in comedy, is timing. There is a time to act and a time to wait. All things in their season. Mrs S on the other hand, is taking this hiatus as an opportunity to educate herself about stocks and shares and we’re both paying much closer attention to our investment affairs.

On that topic, my investment portfolio isn’t looking so great, but I did better than break even in 2018, so I won’t complain. Canadian financial services didn’t do so well, nor did some of the energy companies I hold stock in. On the other hand, some of my other share picks have more than offset the losses, so I’m doing okay. Not great, but okay. My head is above water in that respect. Did get offered a share buyout, but the price was far too low to contemplate selling as the share value of that particular holding is pretty depressed at the moment. It’s a time to stand pat, not panic and sell up. Well that’s my financial opinion and I’m sticking to it. These are uncertain times and the wind might blow either way. So, hunker down and keep working seems to be the order of the day. The one bright spot is that my investment tax allowance from last year has allowed me to invest much more tax free this year, so, swings and roundabouts. I’m growing my retirement fund that way.

Of late I’ve been doing some reading about the two polar opposites, Tom Paine and Edmund Burke, the contemporary founding fathers of the modern left and right, so it is said. From what I can see, there is value on both sides of the coin, even though both men’s arguments suffer from a diametrically opposing flaw. For Paine it is his willingness to throw the baby out with the bathwater and for Burke, a too great sentimentality about the effects of ‘wise’ rulers and established power structures. For my own part I like to take a position somewhere between, where some change is good but too much strips people of their humanity, especially when the revolutionaries completely overthrow an established order. The best institutions develop organically, having developed over the years and never forgetting their cock-ups, with a view to never repeating the same mistakes. To analogise, these things are like trees, they do not benefit from simply being left alone to grow as they will, a good pruning is needed now and again, but cutting the whole thing down does nothing but leave a stump which benefits no-one.

This is what passes for wisdom, at least in my mind. Is it right or is it wrong? Only time and events will bear me out.