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UBUNTU I am because of who we all are.
Supporting the 2012 Olympic Legacy—I WILL be positive and endeavour to maintain the Olympians' love of life and its challenges
MALALA—a statement of the failure of religion:
religion that fails to pro-actively promote the absolute equality of male and female is fundamentally immoral and unfit for decent society.
There is no longer Jew or Greek, there is no longer slave or free, there is no longer male and female; for all of you are one in Christ Jesus. (Galatians 3:26-28)
Diversity within unity and change over time is the reality of Creation. -Peter Such, poet and writer (1943–)


Peter Such

Peter Such

A view of Great Berkhamsted from Cooper's fields. 

Peter Such lives in Great Berkhamsted, Hertfordshire, England
Formerly working in printing and publishing Peter Such is currently an occasional writer on diverse issues, as the mood takes him.
He has regularly put his views to the test of public opinion, which is how he twice ended up as mayor of his home town.
 He also stood for The Referendum Party in the UK General Election of 1997.
Also on Twitter as Peewit2 (he doesn't take it seriously) and on Facebook as himself (Peter.Such.5)

Last published: Sunday, August 31, 2014 17:52


SUNIDAY 31st AUGUST 2014 [evening post]
MULTICULTURISM [evening post]
It is appalling that the BBC, from whom one could once gain some authoritative interpretation of meaning and pronunciation, is now as much a cultural mess as every other broadcasting presence. It is therefore hardly surprising that "Sunday Morning Live" opened a debate on "Multiculturalism" without understanding the meaning of the word 'multiculturalism'. To be brief, the Google search on Oxford and American English is overly simplistic, so I turn to Collins for simplicity with meaning: "...maintaining a diversity of ethnic cultures within a community". "A community is a social unit of any size sharing common values", according to Google, again for simplicity. What could be simpler?
          Therefore, a multicultural society is the tardis of its components but for some reason in Britain this aspect remains disjointed, rather than the widely integrated whole of its composite parts.
          My personal angle on this is the failure of first generation immigrants to accept the reality of their decision to immigrate, which means an open acceptance of the values of their host country as an integral part of those aspects that are common to all our cultures, reserving for the family environment only those aspects specific to their ethnic origins. This persistence retards the onward development and absorption of second and third generations, which derives from two aspects of sheer wilful mindlessness: a persistent inability to speak English and the wilful arrogance of the men to determine women remain subjective to their "authority", in direct defiance of the social reality of the life into which they have chosen to share and play a part and playing a part is an expected requirement. I have two classic experiences of this, the other way round.
          In this country I always avoid Irish pubs and when travelling in America I likewise always avoid Irish establishments and also English ones. In principle, I think I usually avoid any "English style" establishments on the principle I have come abroad to learn what the country I am visiting has to offer me. I do not wish to surround myself with Englishness, other than, perhaps within my own home, were I to emigrate. I have chosen to emigrate (were that the case (and I have considered emigrating to America) precisely because of the style and culture (mostly, not denying there are aspects, as in England, I do not like or would not tolerate)). I have gone abroad specifically for what being abroad in that location offers me as it is, not to transfuse the experience into another home from home: why then move in the first place, it would be irrational? It is horrifying to find that (loose in meaning though it is) the BBC poll scored 95% who did not believe multiculturalism is working.
          In my view, this result can be blamed on three factors, the first two I have already mentioned: failure to speak English communicably; failure of immigrants to open up to unquestioned common ground between all; the failure of their religions that persist, as does the inherent Christian religion still persist for far too long, in being archaic and irrelevant to the reality in which they claim to believe but resolutely refuse to act upon.

SATURDAY 30th AUGUST 2014 [morning post]
ELITISM [morning post]
Twaddle! If the perception is that the state educational system should be the best in the world then raise everyone's taxes and spend the money! People paying the astronomical fees for private education do so because they are very capable people, earning the money required and want the best for their children. They will not spend their money pointlessly. The idea therefore that the best available should not be employed to the maximum of the job requirements is utterly ridiculous: to state or discover otherwise is to say we want the 'less than the best' to be running things! How logical is that?
          What this argument is about is a statement that we are not paying high enough taxes to deliver the best education in the world for which our private education and historical universities are renowned. This is unfair. Fine! Raise the taxes; raise educational professional teaching standards and make it pointless to spend money privately on private education. Where is the problem?
         The criteria for job fulfilment remains the same: the best available candidate, however determined, should get the job. Are these people, complaining about elitism, actually suggesting standards should be lowered? Ability is there regardless, although a more profitable argument might well be to examine the manner of opportunity... oh steady on. I don't think the trades unions like the idea of the most able being in the best positions. That's why the Police Federation is in such a mess, just as in the printing unions. Only the second rate took union positions, in order to hold down their own jobs, when otherwise they might be found not to be up to scratch. They hid their inadequacies by being on union business. That is why the Police Federation is in such a mess.
          What is actually being griped about is that the "modern" universities (probably anything under two centuries old) have not yet made their mark. Oxbridge was founded eight centuries ago! Birds of a feather flock together and man is merely an animal, so why expect that species to behave differently from other animals? It is irrational.
          It is religion that has shown the slow growth of cultural development. Religion should have been seeing ahead and envisaging the way society was moving and helped prepare society for these changes. Instead, religion tended to defy new knowledge and hold back the progress of the very Creation in which it claimed to believe.
          I will shortly be attending a livery dinner in the City, to celebrate that the masters of three livery companies (all within my time frame at the school) come from the same school and are masters in the same year. This results from sheer chance on three fronts. They are three of the most newly formed livery companies; their current masters majorly contributed to bringing their disciplines to the standard required to be a city livery company; as a consequence the masters are all of the same generation, as are their livery companies. Here, we have the grand mix of modernity with established tradition going back more than six centuries and from which arose the expression "to be at sixes and sevens".
          That is society moving in the macrocosm. In the microcosm over the last half century, the Church of England refused to have women priests; accepted women priests but denied them bishoprics; accepted women could be bishops. Socially embarrassed by the Church of England's anti-female agenda I did my own spiritual wanderings, re-engaging much more richly than previously circumscribed by established tradition. Now that the Church of England has woken up to reality I will admit my own failings. I reacted against service changes and modern translations. I love Shakespeare, so had no problem with the King James' version etc. Same language but having wandered I now wish the Church would move faster towards the Free church position. Now I am no longer ashamed of the Church of England and once more being proactively involved, I find my parish church now orientated Rome's way! Awkward is not my middle name!
          Nearly a century ago my father had pursued a similar path. Entering the army as a band boy, my father thought it would be nice to have the band play for him and my mother in the officers' mess. He had reached Sergeant and needed to move on. Some years later, as an officer, he was in the office, dealing with personnel matters and came across his own file. He found he had twice been recommended for earlier officer acceptance but had been denied on grounds that his social background would not enable him to "hold his own" in the Officers' Mess as he had not been to the 'right' school. That was the moment he determined that could never be said of his own children. For which reason both his children were put through public school education and choosing to live in rented accommodation. It was not just education, it was all that type of education carried with it: birds of a feather...
          Time changes; that is what creation is all about and which religion generally ignores but central themes remain valid. They just change their clothes, or their appearances over time. The moment a couple decide to marry the inevitable expectation is that they will have children (or have pre-agreed not to (and to understand they mean it)).
          Deciding to have children, parents automatically determine their life-style for the next twenty or more years ahead, that is the inevitable consequence: duty to the children's welfare and upbringing over-riding all other considerations. That responsibility is to prepare children for the world into which they will have to make a living; and to be educated and prepared, for being able to hold their own in that world. This demands an education that teaches objective comparatives and moral values. Parents do not have a right to predetermine their children's thinking but to ensure they have the ability to think rationally and objectively for themselves. That is parents' basic duty. Another example where religion shows its inadequacy: why indoctrinate other than through fear that your version (of whatever) is not the right one? If it is right, as you believe it is, there can be no valid opposition to it. That there is, or you perceive there might be, implies your version is not as right as you perceive it and you need to do more research. Indoctrination is simply the mind's version of the physical force of the body temporal: it is not spiritual and most religions subscribe to an interpretation of spiritual values, so indoctrination or "exclusive" education is contrary to true religious beliefs. 
          Let me return to my opening: "elitism". The public school system (or private/independent schools) are charged with being elitist because they provide an inclusive education. They encourage open thinking. They challenge orthodoxy. Most particularly they are geared to teaching self-sufficiency and independent thinking. This, apparently, is to be deplored. On what basis? Why is there a concept that a degree from any nonOxbridge university is a lesser degree, or a degree of lesser worth? Why are we sullying modern universities, other than that they do not have eight centuries of esteemed, world famous illuminaries. Quite understandable, they have not been going for eight centuries and many of the illuminaries Oxbridge can claim are world famous because England as a collective whole has been ahead of the world game for at least half that time. England is inherently elitist because it is England. It is the habit of the country and the nature of the breed. It is the result of creating the greatest empire civilisation has yet experienced. At which school was Brunel educated? A "boarding school in Hove", no more. That is the reality of England: we just breed them elite and damned good. They just happen to have centuries of time behind them and seem to come from the same source because birds of a feather...  
          It is the collective whole that matters and in my understanding that is true of the spirit world but in one scéance I attended I asked that question. Answer, "if you think so." Perhaps there is a place for individualism there too, they don't all think alike... but that may depend "at what level?" 

Life is diverse: it is a state of continual change. While planning is an essential requirement for cost-effective management of time and resource, plans must allow for flexibility, adaptability and malleability. This applies to the macrocosm and the microcosm. Too long having to accommodate the LibDems means the Conservatives have become spattered with their waffling evasions rather than the LibDems having shorn themselves of too much committee twaddle.
          The purpose of making the position of Police Commissioner electable and therein invioble of political removal until next election was precisely to enable the position to handle controversial matters objectively, uninfluenced by controversy. Controversy arises and immediately the Conservatives contradict their planned policy and want controversy to be a reason for removing an elected Police Commissioner!
          On a local matter on which I will comment another time, related to the possibility of a Lidl store moving into town and brilliantly handled by Great Berkhamsted's own web tv station, the Conservatives said they could not accommodate the proposal as it contradicted the local ten-year plan. So on one hand the Conservatives will contradict themselves one way and on another they will contradict themselves another. Proving that plans must be adaptable to the changing circumstance of real living: life is a state of continual change!
So, Shaun Wright would appear to be remaining in post to carry out his job as originally planned and intended. Why are the Conservatives upset over this? Why is the Labour Party? Because it means Labour is having to take responsibility while still feeling burned by the consequences of the last time the Labour Party took responsibility: by pitching the country into economic turmoil and massive debt!
         One could argue that in having stood for election as a Labour member and to then ditch the Labour party, Shaun Wright might be seen as changing his colours after election and for that reason one might argue he should stand for re-election but I think it reasonably obvious it is he who has the guts to do the job and the Labour Party is still feeling insecure about taking responsibility.
        Labelling and classification is excellent in the right place, as stated at the head of this article but what has it to do with life that is in a state of continual change? Arguably, the problem is simply misclassification rather than the principle of classification that is wrong. The problem has nothing what ever to do with race. It has everything to do with indecent men arrogantly strutting their testosteronal arrogance. That certain cultures are more prone to male arrogance, ill-education and indiscipline than others, perhaps because of, or not, their prescribed religious upbringing and the failure of their churches to lead with a proper understanding of what creation is really all about, may or may not have anything to do with it. What is the cause of the problem is religions' male arrogance and authoritarian domination over women that is culturally so totally unacceptable and may be the root cause of social disquiet.
          To try and make of this a racial matter is to wilfully create an unwarranted excuse not to deal with the matter. Were that the case, that only emphasises the need for the police and other appropriate services to be immediately involved, making a proper 'to do' about it. Why did they not do so? In claiming the child abuse was racially motivated they are wrong twice over: for failing to act against racism; for failing to act in the protection of children. The one issue, on investigation suddenly appears as two, making the situation in Rotherham even more horrific than previously described.
          These problems come on top of the problems already known in the South Yorkshire police. How could a police force be so incompetently managed as to enable a BBC camera team to film their visiting a house, out of their remit, of Sir Cliff Richard, without having any cause to charge him for anything when the BBC board refused to properly handle Jimmy Salvile's rein of abuse. Why was the BBC alone so privileged and not the wider press community? Is there a police press bias instead of open unaligned accountability to the principle of the press and full accountability and openness?
         These are very sound reasons why someone with a history over the long period that these incidents have been happening should remain in post. How can we possibly get to the bottom of these chaotic circumstances, where total professional competence seems to have flown the nest by the professionals not dealing with the situation with the very rationality that has been so obviously missing and precisely why not removing an elected Police Commissioner is so crucial?

WEDNESDAY 27th AUGUST 2014 [morning post]
"On this day in 1920, women finally received the right to vote. But 94 years later, women still don’t get equal pay for equal work. We’re still fighting for a woman’s right to choose and even access to birth control decades after Roe v. Wade. And women still only make up 20% of the United States Senate and 18% of the House. We celebrate Women’s Equality Day and the hard work of so many women to get us to where we are today, but we need to keep fighting if we want equal to really mean equal." Elizabeth Warren US Democrat senator for Massachusetts
It takes generations to gain a cultural shift. What is interesting here is that the US is arguably the richest and most modern country in the world yet it remains very backward in so much of its thinking. Religion retains Creationists despite evolution being so obvious. Religion generally has held back so much, instead of looking forwards and being practical about the nature of evolution over time, for which it should have been morally in the lead: look at the archaic shambles of Islam to realise how religion has failed so many and society overall. Yet we all move at our own rates of self-awareness and progress and I myself acknowledge there are times when I have hung back from going forward. Entrenched ideas have been developed by religion's determination not to eat of the tree of knowledge: history's version of the Tardis, the fruit being greater than the tree that bore it. That is why religion has resisted for so long and continues to resist. It is an embattled tower of male supremacy, borne of fear out of arrogance and wholly lacking in the purpose and duty "to render service".

TUESDAY 26th AUGUST 2014 [noon post]
Both debates between Salmond and Darling have specifically avoided the fundamental question: WHY? It is pure irrational, egotistical emotion that raised the question and those whose ego thrusts them to the fore of the debate are solely on the "Yes" side. The "No" side simply being calmly rational. This, Salmond's ego trumpeting, with the other egotists masquerading as SNP, has flowered the emotional, blind dreamers to the cusp of irrationality.
          Yes, there is a "Brigadoon" aspect to Scotland. I am a dyed-in-the-wool Unionist Englishman but that does not blind me to the fact that England and the English can be incredibly stupid. It does not stop my heart rising to the thrilling sound of Scottish pipes skirling. They are like none other: Northumbrian, Greek, Irish pipes do not conjure the excitement of the Scottish skirl and the diverse ripple of Scottish tartan, especially modern tartan... and Harris Tweed, not to mention single malts. The Edinburgh Tattoo brings to life the very essence of Scotland, with the castle and the vibrant diversity that is Edinburgh. The Commonwealth Games showed us how much Glasgow has now got going for it. There is without doubt a sense of vibrancy all over Scotland right now. So why on earth put it at risk? That is precisely what will happen with independence because the Scottish people are not addressing the fundamental point.
          Yes, the English have been bloody daft and bloody snooty and have failed to hear the voice of protest. Personally, I blame both Union parties: Labour and Conservative. It is not that Scotland seeks independence but that England has chosen to throw the value of the Union away, through bone idle stupidity. The Midlothian question was never addressed: English stupidity. That some English are crying out for an English Parliament is another classic case where Westminster politicians, probably preoccupied with the utter irrelevances that is the EU, have failed to take on the significance of what is happening under their own noses inside the Union.
In just the same way Salmond and the SNP are determined to throw out baby with the bath water. Independence means you run your own country. Means you have your own central bank and means you control your own currency. Yes, it can be the Scottish pound as opposed to the English pound. Many countries use their own dollar currencies. In our case they would be indicated by £Scotland and £Sterling. Where is the problem? What Salmond and the SNP want is NOT to put that question to the Scottish people, hoping it will not be noticed! They cannot have a working independence with a sterling pound because that means asking the Union if they agree to their fiscal policies being controlled by consideration for Scottish financial policies and needs. No provision has been made for asking the Unionists that question, yet the Scots are determined to be asked their question, including disallowing nearly a million Scots not currently living in Scotland to vote. That really is gerrymandering the vote before it even takes place! So, is the question really to do with Scotland if so many Scots are not being asked the question?
          If Salmond and the SNP wish to accept sterling as the Union's economic policies determine its value, then what on earth is the point of independence, because they clearly will not be independent regarding finances? Yes, the union has said it will devolve more but has not specified what, very obviously because there is no point in incurring more cost without knowing the cost of such investigation is worth going into. We are in an economic crisis.
          Yes, Westminster has piddled along, too damned preoccupied with European irrelevancies rather than dealing with its own child in the next door room. That leads to another Scottish stupidity. If they want independence then why on earth do they want to join the EU, whose requirements will over-ride their national self-interest, the very cause of Westminster turning its eyes away from the domestic situation?
           It is possible the Union will leave the EU. We most certainly will require to control our borders, so additional costs are incurred in border patrols between Scotland and England. Will that be like the Canadian/US border, where all trains between London and Edinburgh/Glasgow will be delayed by half-an-hour, while all passengers exit for a border search, regardless of the weather (I've been there and done that)? We will have gone backwards three hundred years. It is irrational. What then would be the point of faster rail services and HS2? The best vote obviously is NO. Lets see where we are with devolution and the EU, then vote if circumstances have not changed sufficiently.
         This Scottish vote is appropriate, on the grounds of history: the incompetence and arrogance of the English. It is simply being presented at the wrong time.

SATURDAY 23rd AUGUST 2014 [morning post]
CHILDISH WAR GAMES [morning post]
The front page of one morning newspaper is filled with the colour photograph of a pretty little Brussellonian boy, sporting a rifle, dressed as a jihadist in mustard coloured garb, bearing a happy fun-filled smile, as if about to go on stage in his first school play. The paper claims the reality is that he is with his elder brother, both intent on being real jihadists.
          Breakfast tv news also advises that half the Russian convoy headed for eastern Ukraine has decided to charge across the border, effectively waving two fingers at the customs post. It raises the question I asked the other day: are these lorries for deliveries, or for collecting and taking away? Some of the lorries televised as being investigated appeared to be half empty, implying their contents were a cover for otherwise empty lorries coming in for loading.
          The two events seem to run parallel with one another. One, a child trying to be manly: the other, grown men behaving childishly who have not yet been taught by their mummies that playing with matches is dangerous.
          At the same time, we are gaining evidence that Muslims in this country are beginning to come out of their shells and accept they are part of real society. Dressed as everyday people they are rationally espousing that Islam has similar problems to Christianity: young people are not coming to the mosques and established authorities are not being listened to.
          Both religions have made the same mistake. They both believe in a God created world, yet have persistently denied the reality of their own faith: that creation is a state of continual change through time. They have both steadfastly looked behind and tried, at the least, to maintain the perceived status quo, or actually move backwards. Neither of them have interpreted their own faith rationally—and objective rationality is an inherent part of that same Creation in which both claim to believe. In both instances their duties were to look ahead, perceive how creation was changing over time; envisage the potential pathways of those developments and guide accordingly, in advance. Both religions have been preoccupied in standing statically against their own beliefs, instead of embracing their beliefs and courageously striding forward.
          It will take generations for Islamists to open their eyes to their own beliefs and have the courage to adapt to the changing world of their interpretation of God and the reality of His creation but, may be, there are stirrings that Islam should and is moving forward. Hopefully, the example of the Church of England, at last waking up after four centuries of sheer doziness, has helped them contemplate their own need to move forward and be meaningful in the real world of today and not of half a millennium ago.

FRIDAY 22nd AUGUST 2014 [noon post]
ON EATING [noon post]
What could be simpler? Apparently instinct is insufficient. Science must be involved but science cannot make up its mind as to what to advise. Eating properly is a personal responsibility because our health costs us collectively; money over which we individually have no control, as government determines our tax bill. To what extent should our taxes be allocated to specifics on which we vote at general elections? Is the idea practicable, look at what happened to the road tax, it seems to be spent on anything but the roads for which it was originally implemented.
          Nina Teicholz has just published (Scribe) The Big Fat Surprise: why meat, butter and cheese belong in a healthy diet. She apparently is not a scientist, which is disconcerting since science seems to be entering the frame more and more, yet it periodically changes its mind: 5 a day has become 10 a day and then there are variants saying 7 a day! We are told to watch our waist lines and not be overweight; our simple lives are cavalierly countered by differentiations between fats; good fats, bad fats; saturated unsaturated; then we get involved with cholesterol but that gets divided further. Cholesterol is carried by lipoproteins. There are two types: low-density (LDLs) and high-density (HDLs). LDLs are the dangerous or "bad" type: they can cause fatty deposits or 'plaque'. HDLs are "good" cholesterol that guard against plaque. At this point I am wondering if I need to buy this book in whatever form. All I want to do is eat some food! It's nearly lunch time and I am hungry!
          We are told obesity is a modern epidemic; we are told health is becoming too costly and we must review precisely what the NHS is supposed to cover and provide; that alcoholics and smokers should contribute to the costs of their health, specifically worsened by persistence in using these two commodities, so tax them specifically. Why not ban cigarettes completely? Because the tax raised contributes to keeping other taxes down which we don't mention so as not to detract from the argument smokers should contribute more to their own increased health costs. More importantly, why should not alcohol carry a specific health tax: but, the argument follows, why not ban alcohol, Muslims don't drink it? Would that mean that morally we could not presume to export what we ourselves are not allowed to drink? Interesting.
          I have not yet downloaded the Kindle version (nearly £10 cheaper than the printed version) but similar books illustrate the size and diversity of the market. All I wanted to do was to review my eating habits, rationally, simply and sensibly. Why on earth did I think of bothering?

Whether or not IS is anything to be taken seriously, several clear statements are emerging. First, as expected, we appear to be on the track of the wilful murderer, by beheading, of the American journalist. The believed British murderer, so keen to demonstrate his lack of confidence in his beliefs; and others of his persuasion, equally keen to demonstrate their uncertainties, did so by masking their faces. Those truly in belief of the assertions of IS would have no difficulty in looking the world in the face, proudly declaring their certainties.
           They don't, for the simple reason they are not certain of what they claim to believe in. The most recent forms of martyrdom were displayed in England during the reins of Mary and Elizabeth I, where people respectively insisted on being burned at the stake rather than give up their religion. So deeply ingrained was their Catholic faith that the Howards of Norfolk and associates gave their lives to beheading and having their heads stuck on spikes on London Bridge.
          Others, on both sides of Christianity, were burned at the stake. That is "dying for one's faith". The IS, so unsure of their proclaimed beliefs, insist that someone at gun point, who swears allegiance to them rather than die, is an automatic, faithful citizen of IS. This is belief drawn to the cliff edge of insanity. IS followers clearly believe their faith is so shallow it requires only a second of thought to create a believer. This IS version of Islam is solely for the empty-headed bent on rampage for no other reason than the irrationality of Ferguson citizens in Missouri.
          The seeming ease with which conversions can be made speaks only of the rationality that has entered the Yazidi religion, one of the oldest faiths in the Middle East. Burning at the stake was the period that determined "death rather than renounce" through more practical fear being grounded in Godly understanding. Nowadays it is more rational to be pragmatic, unless one wants to make a public statement and draw attention to oneself on a point of principle (or over-inflated ego): the converse answer is concern for others, especially family and friends. Such conversions are obviously meaningless and just words as is IS itself: just words to cloak skulduggery and theft, for that is the source of their arms and claimed monetary deposits.
          The true reality of IS is simply that it is a terrorist organisation of the disenchanted and needs to be met with the physical force with which it declares its practical reality. There is nothing philosophical behind it. "Render unto Caesar that which is Caesar's: render unto God that which is God's" [Matthew 22:21]. There is no religion here.
          Christianity should assert concern that so many seem disenchanted with their lives. Something is wrong. That some come from Britain and have grown up or acquired these attitudes here re-enforces Gov's concern over teaching inadequacies within our system and in particular that "Islamist domination" into our culture may well be the cause: why else would this creeping influence be so insiduously conducted, rather than openly and honestly? Because it is a wilful misrepresentation of Islam.
          It says everything there is to say about the LibDems, when the forcing of football crowds to sit rather than stand is claimed to be of sufficient importance as to be a bone of contention for the next General Election!
          I've only attended one football match. I was there to hear a pre-recorded announcement in the interval to check how effective it was. I was horrified to find there was no seating. Is it not typical, that now football has woken up to reality, the LibDems want to go back into hibernation?

THURSDAY 21st AUGUST 2014 [evening post]
No wonder LibDems love the EU, they are just as daft as it is... "We have procedures". Just as the EU excuses not doing anything, or being involved in what is relevant, they too disappear into committees and when they feel sufficient time has passed, they slide the required paperwork under the door, pretending nothing ever happened.
          Lord Rennard is a member again. The man credited with making people believe the LibDems are rational after all was condemned by their own women for not being modern enough and they tried to unseat him. Interesting, effectively declaring that while women elsewhere are easy and proud to show they are "with it and capable", LibDem women still have some way to go. To please them it is reported Lord Rennard will not be available for the next election. What twaddle. The man, who proved his worth to get them were they were before their own women started raising questions as to the party's competence, won't be used? Get rid of the stupid women and get Rennard involved, if he's still prepared to do so. For heaven's sake, it is this sort of stupidity that makes the LibDems ineluctable. Even their MPs don't know what they think until a committee has told them what to think!

It will be interesting to see how the civil case will proceed. To have the CPS claim none of the undercover officers who had relationships with several women, causing one to bear two children for him, abused these women by masquerading as "normal" people, rather than advise them the relationship with them was to cover their investigation into what those women's society was up to, is beyond comprehension. The decision belies all the talk that the police are supposed to being better educated in their understanding of female abuse within the family. Clearly, something does not add up. Has the CPS thought through the possible consequences for any future trial the police do bring against someone who is not a police officer?

A simple shopping trip for basics on Wednesday after-noon gathers four more newspapers! The Daily Telegraph leads "Jail for husbands who 'control' their wives". Why? Because religion has failed. Its presumptuous arrogance that men are always in charge is the root cause of parents failing to educate their children in a proper civilised manner in which all people are treated equally and respectfully. The Catholic Church still maintains these attitudes and up until twenty years ago so did the Church of England: both wilfully and deliberately ignored Galatians: "There is no longer Jew or Greek, there is no longer slave or free, there is no longer male and female; for all of you are one in Christ Jesus. [Galatians 3:26-28]. There is also an accumulative parental failing; to properly educate and accept responsibility for the results of their sexual conduct in determining to have children: they have failed to accept that the next eighteen years of their lives, at the least, are entirely accountable to that responsibility.
          This is where the concepts of social stigma and church disapproval once held sway to discourage. The reality is that it did not. The equal reality is, can society and should society, as a collective whole, for that is where the law takes away from individual judgement, determine upon these matters; and to what extent can one reasonably expect someone to encounter difficulties and not simply run away without seriously trying? "For better or for worse... " is religions' serious attempt to face life as it is and be practical.
          Unlike the civil courts, criminal intervention does not cost the suffering partner: that at least is the theory but of course only relates to money. There are many complexities in any relationship that is not working. Is external criminal intervention really the right mechanism? We know the civil court process does not work as well as it might or is intended it should. In the same way that death is being openly discussed, it can only be good that difficulties in personal relationships, the effects of which overflow into other people's lives and affect the collective whole of society, are equally discussed.
          Is it too soon in the cycle to discuss science's view? It is quite clear that we are not spending as much as we should on mental health and there can be no question biochemical and neurological agencies are involved in understanding human behaviour and the way emotions are aroused and controlled. There are efforts to provide anger management courses for children when unsocial traits are detected, usually as a result of an indisciplined parent but what is being done about the indisciplined adults? Is there provision in family courts but these are specialist courts that will not encounter the full gamut of potential perpetrators of unsocial behaviour? For the rest, what then?

Once more the IS lot and similar are displaying their lack of confidence in their version of the Islamic faith. They have executed one journalist and are threatening to kill another if the West does not stop arguing with them. Basic rule is that you never give in to blackmail and of course there will never be any official response to such nonsense.
          Whether a medic would term these people as suffering some form of mass hallucination the reality is, that to be taken seriously, religion must be rational. There is nothing rational about these people's interpretation of faith and by being in a panic that they must not hear dissent to their ill-formed opinions (the only reason for their path of total annihilation of contrary views to theirs) displays the fundamental uncertainty that causes their seemingly 'certain' intents.
          The fact of faith is that it speaks its own language in its own way but only to those who choose to hear. Most religions fail because they perceive they are required to sell it to those unbelieving. That is always at the heart of religious failure: the faith cannot be allowed to speak for itself, through simple logic and the example of its believers but must be pro-actively declared, as interpreted by the preacher: precisely why Islam and Christianity are so muddled in their interpretations. They have all failed to change with the times, so that meanings and interpretations are seen and understood in each age of changing time. More particularly, religion is supposed to have looked ahead to the way times may change; to envisage; and to discuss and prepare their flocks accordingly.
          It does seem, however, that the more rational Imams are getting together to co-ordinate a public message that is meaningful to their congregants, while not causing concern to nonbelievers, unaccustomed to their format, style and ideas. That perhaps is the problem: many Imams and nonImams have been genuinely concerned about the undefined line between being open with their faith and knowing their faith contrasts with the society in which they have chosen to live.
          There are also other indicators. Islamists are coming out of their shells generally to be more open about their beliefs and so put across the rational and main stream interpretation that basically should not be at odds with rational thinking.
          The other question we might ask of ourselves is to what extent we have failed to take into account attitude changes. From time of empire through to commonwealth we should have accepted the diversities around us. Why are they suddenly causing problems: or, why are some many Islamic youths feeling disenchanted not only with their environment but also with their native religion? Something must be wrong there that they choose to suddenly wish to challenge orthodox teaching. That is not down to us but squarely sits with the parents. Have they failed to adapt themselves to the culture they have chosen to join and be involved? Is it a parent/child problem. The parents have tried to hold back the reality of their change from their home ways and have held back their children from truly being involved in the community around them?

WEDNESDAY 20th AUGUST 2014 [noon post]
Preconceived models applauded by the Social Integration Commission, a think tank, are out of kilter with reality. In Rosemary Bennett's report [The Times June 30] "diversity alone does not equal integration". An all-embracing "white people are the most insular" is an appalling indictment of many Europeans. The British specifically are renowned for being "standoffish", a less congenial way of expressing their inherent "reserve", despite which they are globally renowned. That is a proven fact in reality. There is no conflict. To be reserved is merely to be cautious until first impressions are accumulated into solid understanding. That is why what the British start is usually long-lasting, effective but also adaptable.
          The report highlights why so much of the EU is an administrative disaster. The EU is a specifically created artificial construct, deliberately created in specific defiance of well proven facts.

It was reported yesterday but seems since to have gone underground, that aspects of the NHS is at last seeing sense on late caring, by asking 'at home' patients if they wish to be on the "no resuscitation" list. We are beginning to get somewhere. The furore over 'assisted dying' is no different in principle to the fuss and palaver over CCTV cameras in public places. The perceived problem was deliberately created by theorists divorced from realities. Just the same way that Welby is tripping himself up on assisted dying.
          He described Falconer's Bill as a "sword of Damocles" hanging over the heads of elderly people. Then he said that "an individual's suffering should not blind us to the needs of others". Yet in resisting Falconer's Bill he is deliberately blind to the needs of those others.
As a Christian priest, Welby is fully aware that there is "no death". That there are two aspects to a person: body and soul. The inanimate body is merely a package of biochemistry awaiting appropriate disposal. For too long the Christian church has been preoccupied with the body instead of giving solace to the bereaved of a departed soul.
          A century or more back there was so much superstition over dead bodies that they were never allowed inside a church, hence the creation of lych gates. Their purpose was to shelter the pall bearers during inclement weather while the service took place inside the church. A proper lych gate has a plinth in its centre on which the coffin was laid and has seats in the recesses either side. This was a clear indication of the separation of body and soul. The church service for the departed spirit and the church yard for the disposal of the no longer usable body.
          The only funeral I have been solely responsible for organising was my father's which, as befits a military man, was already pre-laid out for me. He did not wish to go as far as I would have wished and as I hope to do for my own funeral but he enabled me to send out invitations to "the celebration of a life" and to advise people "not to be downcast but to be cheerful in their attire". At his wish, his coffin came into the crematorium to the tune of Chariots of Fire and we left his body to the tune of Blaze Away. It was my father's way of waving two fingers at the world he had just left. That was some ten years ago. I have conversed with his spirit since. There IS no death.
          The problem with funerals is, "whose funeral is it?". Is it the deceased's? Is it the person determined by various precedents to organise it? In either case but less so in the case of the former is the question of the closest mourners. What are their feelings? The marrying of these potential conflicts then has to be tied in with the desired location and the feelings, attitudes and precedents of those managing the location and those invited and prepared to officiate.
          Change over time is the only way to accept the reality of change that we must all accept. I sometimes wish I could be reborn in this age but with the background I have acquired! There were times when I was ahead of the game and most insistently told to "pipe down" and "hold your noise". Other times I have lingered too long, resisting change around me. I did not want the church service to change and stood by the "King James'" version but I walked away when they first refused to ordain women. Now I revel in the diverse translations available, the difference between the churches, wishing the Church of England as a whole would embrace some of the playful sunbeams emanating from the Free churches. The fact of Creation is very simple and objectively acceptable, regardless of opinion or faith: it is a state of continual change. Religion primarily is responsible for our refusal to accept our own reality, causing us to resist change. The question is not that we should or should not change but "yes" we must accept change but in which direction? This is where religion should have advised, ahead of our realisation there was a problem to be resolved. Religions should be looking forward but persist in always looking back.
          Open, unfettered discussion is the only rational way forward. I look back on my life and see the way so much has changed and basically, overall, for the better. With the diversity of opinions that did not previously exist; or which were silenced from expressing themselves because of prevailing social attitudes that renounced proposals before they were even uttered, it is even more complicated to rationally review the spirit of intent on so much of social living that has grown up, from revolutionary concepts of change. These have themselves now become embedded inthe mantra "this we must not change". Precisely the stance of religion and we know how wrong was that resistance to change.
          At least we are addressing, in open dialogue, the finances involved in social care and asking, "to what extent should the public purse pay: to what extent the private individual?". "Where and in what manner lies the dividing line between a meaningful life and the blindly, bizare, asinine following of the Hippocratic oath?"

TUESDAY 19th AUGUST 2014 [evening post]

This is a determined state I insist on acquiring from time to time and in my view far too infrequently. Yet I am a bachelor, why should I not always 'just be', as a matter of course'? What happens, at that moment of first awakening, that fills the following moments with a sense of predestination, 'things must be done'. Anyone visiting me at any time would see immediately essential things 'that must be done' that have most certainly not been done. What is it that predetermines 'must do', even if pragmatically reduced to 'this should be done', or 'I ought to do'.
          The social mores ingrained from childhood; the pattern of parental diktat that determines toys must be put away before bed time, or some more immediate need, such as impending visitors?  The discipline of school, particularly if boarded where life is more specifically structured than for the 'day boy', who flirts continuously between firm, formal and more relaxed structures, where the individual is more themselves? In order 'to be' it seems is not an automatic state of natural being but an imposition upon a prestructured day.
          The holidays, when all might seem equal, are still structured around preset rituals. Many (and I think it so sad that I am not able to say "all') when retired say "I don't know how I ever had time to work". "Time is flying faster and faster". The more one thinks of clearing space; clearing out debris; preparing for a dignified ordered end that those left behind may have least trouble with one's departure, seem only to emphasise how much more time one still needs and one does not perceive one is any less efficient in one's use of time than forty years previously.
          Were a 'time and motion' man to monitor one and compare present with past, perhaps indeed he would prove we have slowed up, become less efficient and do inhabit a state of 'being' but waste it in mental meandering upon nothing special.
          Looking out of the window "pay attention boy!" as a small piece of chalk clips one's ear from the front of the class becomes, with age, but a casual glance. One may glance, or look as one pleases now aged and does one really take in what exactly is there? Take in the view. Examine the angle and nature of the light; its reason why: the state of the sky, the clouds, the wind soughing the branches? The fleeting shadow of a bird, its size, its nature, from where to where and why?
          The state of the world. The street, the time. Is anyone in the street; where are they going and why and why if there is no one? What is the state of the grass, in terms of cutting? How are the leaves on the trees in the middle and further distance? What time of year is it? How far advanced is the season? Which season follows; is preparation needed?
          The chill of early morning determines today that the central heating be switched on: not to heat but to check the system and set ready for the next time the early morning chill determines it should cut in; just for an hour or two. Sitting here now, keyboarding this, the mind envisages the adding up bill for the year ahead; thinks on Christmas, expenses to be eased up on... and all expenses that might be reduced or cancelled out. What winter clothes need replacing; no longer fit; really and truly are no longer fit even for rubbishing around indoors, let alone used publicly for washing the car? What summer things could be earmarked for throwing out... not until it gets a little colder... and we could have an Indian summer!?
          One might organise a formal retreat but that of course is the problem, it is organised freedom. One might organise it oneself but then that too is organised by the rental period, the getting to and from; the making it ready and leaving it tidy. People have even bought property in which to just sit and think, for as long as a year or two.
          I intended doing that once. My father hit the roof "... after all we've spent on educating you!" My mother was distraught and had hysterics, panicking I would never again be employed. I called off my plans, so entering that world in which one is continually aware that destiny may end tomorrow. The Catholic concept, God may call you in the night, or at any time.  Are you ready to meet Him? Or simple practicalities: you might live until 90, is your pension large enough? If you did live that long it would be worth buying property? In case you don't live long, you need to have insurance; not just for life but against accident and possibly not being able to earn from then on in.
          By the way, you should eat and live well and you might not make it so grab a moment to make the most of what you know, don't leave anything you could have spent.
        I have friends who went at 21; at 24; at 30; before 40; before 60; just after retirement. I even know of a police divisional commander who departed in his forties and had not believed in leaving a Will for his wife and children!
          I'm still here, having lived a median life: some great personal tragedies; an occasional skip and jump; sufficient insight to see beyond the immediate; insufficient long-term leaping, seen now, looking back but at the time it seemed a jump too far and now... it probably was.
          Je ne regrette rien is not a bad way to view a life. That I may have made more of it hides what less I might have achieved, by branching off earlier on a side road, down a route far shorter in length, with no branches off, than this road has been, with its options and ending earlier than it seems I will now. There is still time and unlike far too many I have come across of late, I wonder how on earth I ever managed to fit in work at all!
          I recall Seneca's observation "... those out of breath for no purpose, always busy about nothing... ; Napoleon's complaint on St Helena "work is the scythe of time, I need more of it". Perhaps that is why a state 'of being' is so difficult to achieve: it scythes through time and we fear its lack of staying power.
          On the other hand, Aristotle believed that leisure was the first principle of action. Only an affluent society could afford to choose trivially in leisure but I do not regard a state 'of being' a triviality. To me, its value is the difficulty in attaining it; having attained it, to sustain it; and in 'having been', to share its munificence widely and wildly.
          Particularly evidenced in some of Shakespeare's comedies is the concept that only the rich can do nothing and therefore doing nothing was a noble calling. Jerome K. Jerome once wrote that he could sit and look at work for hours but not actually do any. That is to under-rate thinking and to misunderstand the process 'of being'. I should know, I'm doing it. The light has slipped away but the mind is still active and I am 'just being'. Good night!

It is good that the Church of England is at last endeavouring to make a constructive  contribution to world affairs. While it is a church for all sinners (and we are) it needs to temper its roused angst with the need to display some humility, through its past transgressions.
          We still do not have the enactment to put into effect that women can now be bishops. Half a century ago the church refused to have women priests. Nearly twenty-five years ago it decided we could have women priests but still denied them the ability to be bishops. While saying that women could have become priests over four centuries ago would have been too advanced for the general population, to have lingered so long until so recently is unacceptable and so is the intensity of its criticism of today's government.
          The church must take into account its contribution to the whole. That means it must recognise that as far as the country is concerned our immigration policy is moulded by our ability. The EU has specifically told us we cannot control our borders. Yet we must deal with the fact this is an overcrowded island. The present Tilbury situation reminds us of just how desperate so many are to get here. The only rationality is to deal with the issue in situ, as we are doing. 
          It now appears these illegal migrants (not victims) are from  Afghanistan, not the British Commonwealth however much that country, or its people, might wish it/they could be. Still, the objection remains as I previously stated and in particular that they are not linguistically able to work.
          I am not indifferent to their suffering but the fact remains the British only ever governed a fifth of the world's population and only had control over a quarter of its land mass: that is all! We could not put the world to rights then and we most certainly cannot do so now. We most definitely cannot bring it all home to us!  The only practical thing we can do is to offer encouragement and aid where we can, in the most meaningful manner. That most meaningful manner is not opening unlimited boundaries to an over-crowded island, no longer under its own control, due to the singular stupidities of the EU and our own Liberal Socialist tendencies to give away what we have not got to those who do not need it.
          To be of any serious help to anyone, we must be totally unrestricted by external interests who are not remotely interested in us. We must first bring the EU to understand that they adapt to us, the British people, not our damned fool politicians who have proved so keen not to ask us. Once we are again properly in control we can then start seeing what good we can do the rest of the world and that is precisely the issue. We, in this country are world related. Europe is only preoccupied with its self-interests and the trivia of minutiae.
           As John of Gaunt said [Richard II Act II Scene1 "England...  is now bound in with shame,/ With inky blots and rotten parchment bonds:/ That England, that was wont to conquer others,/Hath made a shameful conquest of itself." So very true today! Rules, regulations, committees, trivia, irrelevances. For too long we have wasted out time and effort in such things as these. For too long we have stood like greyhounds in the slips/ "Straining upon the start. The game's afoot:/ Follow your spirit, and upon this charge/ Cry 'God for Harry, England, and Saint George!" Then and only then can we at last be properly accountable.
          For nearly half a millennium we have been globally orientated: Europe is just so much small beer. It is not our style.

"I'm going places!" cries Assange, no longer prancing excitedly on a balcony, looking like a puppet with a hand up his bum, which he seemed to enjoy, smiling with delighted pleasure. On this occasion he appeared at a fringe theatre, so fringe it was actually in London which, as some of the more vocal Scots are keen to point out, with neither rhyme nor reason, is nowhere near Scotland at all, let alone Edinburgh!
          Assange's world declaration yesterday was to say that he inteded going away soon but he had no idea how or where, or for that matter precisely when. That, essentially, was the summation of his world press conference. Doubtless this is why he hired no more majestic a West End theatre than Flat 3b, 3 Hans Crescent, London SW1X 0LS. Otherwise known as the Embassy of Ecuador.
          For those unfamiliar with their school geography Ecuador is a small area of South America, up in the top left hand corner, just below the Panama canal and is a large enough area to be called a country. Doubtless why it likes to promote people lke Assange to reduce their marketing costs to remind people it is there.
          Being such a small theatre it clearly was running on a tight budget and not much equipment. Who ever was in charge of sound did not seem to understand the way microphones work and the programme's host seemed to have forgotten he was in England and spoke in some unrelated foreign language. When Assange did speak, in English, someone else was translating into another unrelated language over his voice and really nothing much was discernible which gave any indication as to why anyone was there at all. Interesting.

DIVERSE NEWS INDEED: 4 SUNDAY PAPERS NEEDED PURCHASING! Following TV discussions Saturday night and Sunday morning.
On all fronts, across the board, it seems we are suffering the result of historical damned fool stupidity and one must ask the question, that with all our willingness to be an open multi-cultural society, chaos is the inevitable result. Perhaps, more precisely, the damned fool stupidity of the interminable years of Labour governments are now coming home to roost.
          Labour's attitude had been, "Dear EU, you are even more daft than we are so if we agree with you we won't seem quite as daft as we are." It now appears we may have no choice but to leave the EU because we cannot otherwise control the ECHR by which pontifications common criminals are declared more important than a society of all citizens living peaceably without lawlessness. We appear confirmed in our need to leave if we are to have any sense of rationality in law.
          Our inability to determine who we choose to have in our country because of the ECHR is brought immediately to a head with this latest importation of illegal immigrants at Tilbury and even the media are getting it all wrong. First, these are potential criminals since they are trying to enter by criminal means of deception. Second, they are NOT victims. Victims are helpless or abused people. These are not. They apparently are unable to speak English. They clearly do not intend to seek gainful employment as a command of English is obviously essential. 
         Third, to gain illegal entry into the UK apparently requires excessively greater payment to gangsters than conventional airfares. Clearly, these people are financially well off in the context of their backgrounds otherwise they would not be able to pay the fees.
          The practicalities are that we cannot take any more than the numbers which we are forced to accept uncontrolled and because the numbers are uncontrolled through specific directive of the EU, we cannot accept those we do not have to and that includes Commonwealth people whom we have already had to control in wilful priority to Europe: Commonwealth people whose entries had anyway to be restricted due to overload within these islands.

It now appears my criticism of South Yorkshire police action over Sir Cliff Richard was correct. MPs now raising concerns and revealing Crompton has already met criticism for his inept policing. This must now throw serious doubt over any possible allegations against Sir Cliff as to whether they could possibly be remotely proper, unless the case is handed to another force immediately.

I hope Carney has taken into account the turbulence of an election and that with autumn quickly approaching (although we can have an 'Indian Summer') I hope he has taken into account the ending of summer holiday jobs! On top of that we have no idea if and how a Scotland "Yes" will affect the currency. Concerned.

Approaching immigration from another angle, it is good to have the Church of England getting itself involved. However its moral intervention (quite rightly) has to be taken in context: the EU's determination we may not control our borders as sound management determines (the EU hates competent management) means also that we must take into account all faiths, not just our own proclivities and on that score, Christianity has always led by being an inclusive and not exclusive faith: unlike Islam, that however much one tries to research and understand it, the more of a mess it seems to get.
          The concept, therefore, that Islam is understandable in the few seconds of saying "yes" or "no" to a diktat that one will decide at a point of a gun is clearly nonsense and is a deliberate, wilful insult to those Muslims who take their time over years and prayers to properly understand the faith.
          This means several things. One, the IS concept is NOT any form of religious faith. These are quite clearly Nazi style idealists in a panic that anyone should countermand them, because they are basically insecure and frightened, to which there can only be one rational response: that they be immediately countermanded.
          Chris Eubank espoused this superbly this morning, when he was interviewed on Sunday Morning Live about his boxing career. It was absolutely superb to be presented by a man, unquestionably a fighter, who illustrated what I recall my father trying to explain to me (sport was not my thing) when a child: that boxing was an art, a science and a skill and that revenge and temper was nothing to do with it. It was a gentlemanly art. [Not outside the regimental stakes, although in civilian life he was graded an international status hockey umpire, my father won many cups at a variety of sports including boxing.]
          In Eubank we had the classic gentleman in refinest of understanding the detail of the art; in the way he dressed, superbly immaculately; a gentleman through and through and the way he treated religion: born and educated as a Christian, he had chosen Islam and in his speaking it was clear he had done (as to some extent I myself have done through life) looked at the detail behind all the world's major religions and then made his choice.
          For me, this was a classic practical statement of a real Moslem. For me, I had a clear statement that any form of Islamic interpretation that in any way provokes or incites physical violence is anathema. In this, it is not at odds with Christianity in the practicality of force only in desperate defensive need. There is no conflict.
          I am not yet convinced regarding Islam's attitude towards women and here it is secularity we have to thank for rationality entering the debate. The Church of England has got there but Rome is till too far behind to be allowed to be taken seriously. That church must continue to be resisted, restricting the effects of its shameful attitude to its own closed confines and in no way be allowed to affect the real world outside its blinkered vision.

SATURDAY 16th AUGUST 2014 [early morning post]
On BBC Breakfast a review of the papers raises the issues involved on the Cliff Richards story. A barrister is quoted in The Independent providing authority to matters i raised yesterday. Apparently the BBC's source was from other than the South Yorkshire police. That being so, first, the BBC team should have provided the source. Now, there is a news convention that sources are not revealed but if prominent personalities should not be named until a charge is made, then if they are, the source responsible should also be named. The question is now raised that the South Yorkshire police is insecure in its confidential information. This raises the question the Chief Constable should immediately bring in an outside team to ensure the whole investigation is untainted.
           At the nub of this is why the regional police forces should not be merged into a national police force. We know there is corruption in the Police Federation which has invaded the London Metropolitan police (or vice versa). The South Yorkshire police is a different force which has now sullied itself on at least information insecurity, which is why another force should be handling the investigation and were there to be a court case, doubtless any competent defence team will raise this issue.
          The BBC Breakfast team raised the issue that since it was the BBC that approached the South Yorkshire police, it was the police that could not and should not try to hide the news. This is nonsensical. The usual deferring comment is simply "At this stage we are unable to make any statement other than that Sir Cliff is aware of allegations having been made into which we are pursuing enquiries. When we have something to report we will do so". Whether or not that would have been the proper response Sir Cliff should have been immediately informed at that stage. Why wasn't he, or his legal representatives? Something is clearly going on in the South York shire constabulary which does not appear to be to standards expected.

Religion generally is getting completely out of hand. For over one hundred years there has been a tradition that travellers on their own in an hotel room might find themselves in dire straights and be needing the consolation of the Bible, provided by charitable giving.
          Times have indeed changed but a tradition has been acquired. First, was there a need to publicise this? The obvious thing to do would simply have made them available upon request rather than leaving them in a room by default. Two, arguably if anyone was disposed towards religion they would have their particular version of The Bible with them, would they not? One might therefore ask, why were they ever put there in the first place but to proselytise?

FRIDAY 15th AUGUST 2014 [early morning post]
I was apalled by the representative of the women complaining that they had been sexually abused by undercover police officers. Harriet seemed to be flustering all over the place instead of articulately getting her points across. However, it also appeared that only two of four officers had been named as a court required, implying the police were implementing a direction but not paying heed to the spirit of the direction.
          The same failure to implement the spirit of intent appears to apply to the South Yorkshire police, where there is implication of inadequate security, enabling news teams to be pre-advised on the assault on one of Cliff Richard's properties. This could completely nullify any possible case against him, should such a circumstance arise on this particular issue and any subsequent allegations later made could also be nullified, by possibility the later allegations have only coer forward because of the publicity and not because there was ever legitimate cause for the allegations in teh first place. This is singularly disturbing that police inadequacy seems to extend beyond the Met's remit.

THURSDAY 14th AUGUST 2014 [noon post]
I am delighted to be able to change tack from the course on which my title is set. As is so often the case, 'pause for thought before acting'; 'fools rush in where angels fear to tread': microcosm and macrocosm frequently enmesh.
          Locally, we are about to experience a major change in refuse collection, despite an excellent county-wide history of reported recycling success and refuse reduction. Apparently this is due to new regulations (EU I'll bet) or the council is changing to more efficient recycling procedures but the leaflet is currently buried under accumulated reference material, despite me being predominantly digital these days.
          This news was in my mind when I looked out on my four mile view down the valley, looking out over the town, seeing an active sky but still staying dry. Four miles of roofs, varied treetops, distant fields in varying colours, according to the weight of clouds above and then I saw, thirty feet from my window, a freshly cut lawn, bestrewn with rubbish from a carrier bag blown by the breeze. I guessed whose it was and pondered if the refuse collectors would pick it all up. It was by my car and in fact I did have it in mind to give the car a clean out and take some other rubbish to the tip. Would I be expected to clear it up and take it with me?
          As expected, the collectors ignored it, merely emptied the containers and took away the black sacks, into which the carrier bag should have been placed and secured against possible dog intrusion.
          Why not place the bag in a black plastic sack (supplied free by the council)? Was there economy in not wasting a big sack and making do with a 'no longer required' plastic bag? Why was the bag not tied at the handles to increase security—it may have been the wind, not a dog causing the mess? Was it overfull? Why not use two such bags? There wasn't a second one to hand. Mind having engaged in all this pre-thinking, a track had been preset and the bag dumped with the other sacks of refuse.
          The refuse collectors refused to gather up the bits, why? They are on a time schedule. It is the responsibility of the house holders to deposit their refuse in an acceptable manner. Why should the rest of us incur the costs of other people's slovenliness? The time factor may be cost-effectiveness for taxpayers: or it might be there is a competition between crews with a weekly/monthly prize. Let's face it, who would actually want to be a refuse collector? Heavy, cumbersome safety coat in hot weather. Warm in winter but ice on the pathways; heavy rain; fine drizzle; cold and breezy. Same for postal workers: someone wanting to keep fit; enjoys the outside; mind disengaged, just walking and humping. There is justification in a certain level of unemployed. The inevitable consequence of changing jobs voluntarily or involuntarily. Who else would do the "unwanted" jobs if there was not unemployment to encourage the availability. Galatians 6:2 is more meaningful: that we bear one another's burdens as we are able to do so.
          Thus I turn to the macrocosm: the Middle East. Clearly there is an anguish of humanity pleading for help. We know the facts from news reporting: but news reporting angles cameras and selects people for interview, according to the angle of the intended story directed by the editor; just as newspapers use their headlines to attract attention and make a sale. Charities decline to state the percentage of income allocated to administration costs and promotion—should be shown on every publication. Charity telephone callers do not immediately tell you who they are and for what purpose, only at the end of their waffle, when you would need to reverse your path were you to change your mind, do they advise they are not the charity but an agent acting for the charity [Channel 4 news report 19:00 20140813].
          The immediate question is: if they can afford these people rather than encourage volunteers, have they not already sufficient funds? How sure are we of how much of our offerings actually go to the cause rather than the cause's overheads and how efficient and essential are these?
In the Qur'an version of the Cain and Abel story provided by Wikipedia "Only Abel’s sacrifice was accepted because of his righteous attitude and his faith and firm belief in God... Abel (advised Cain) that the punishment for murder would be that (Abel) would spend the afterlife in the fires of Hell… Abel then told Cain that in murdering him, he would carry the weight not only of his sin but also of the sins of his victim.[4] The innocent pleading and preaching of Abel had no effect upon Cain, for he was full of arrogance, pride and jealousy. He subsequently slew[5] the righteous Abel, but in doing so, he ruined himself and became of those who remain lost."
          The quotation above comes from an entry headed "This article improperly uses one or more religious texts as primary sources without referring to secondary sources that critically analyse them."  
          It would therefore appear [and it is a nonbiblical scholar writing] that in the minds of the Islamic State jihadist group, offering the choice of "convert to Islam or die", instils a sufficient awareness of the Jihadists' interpretation of Islam as to describe their victims as quoted in the Qur'an [same article] as denying Allah. If a meaningful understanding of Islam can be acquired so easily, of what value is the religion and why is so much time purportedly taken for students to learn it normally in specialist schools?
          "The Qur'an states that the story of Cain and Abel was a message[7] for mankind, as it had told them about the consequences of murder and that the killing of one person would be as if he/she had slain the whole of mankind. Islam can so easily be assimilated and the Qur'an states that still people rejected the message of the story and continued to commit grave sins, slaying prophets, messengers as well as the righteous people. All the prophets who preached since the time of Adam were persecuted, insulted or reviled in one way or another. With some righteous men, however, the Qur'an states that people went one step further, in attempting to slay them or indeed slaying them. The Qur'an itself mentions the slaying of the righteous, saying "As to those who deny the Signs of God and in defiance of right, slay the prophets, and slay those who teach just dealing with mankind, announce to them a grievous penalty".[8]
          In short, all this does is to declare the complete irrationality, confused or otherwise by multiple translations over time, through different cultures, all varying in their use and interpretation of text and language, of religious concepts in an everyday context. To some extent the more rational and 'modern' 'authorities' on Islam are in agreement with condemning the jihadists as unrepresentative and totally unqualified in Islam.
          The obvious response is that secular reality must step in for purely practical purposes of common humanity and let all religion "go hang".
          Is western secularism any better? Look at Putin, Ukraine and Europe. There is no damned sense there either. Putin is behaving exactly as the jihadists: pure egocentric tantrum. The promotion of jingoistic egotism or... Is there something else? They are all frightened, little people trying to make sense of a world that seems entirely senseless. The people who should be in charge are not: those that are in charge have no sense of what they should be doing, so pursue their egocentric self-interests.
          Oh! It now appears my neighbour has gone outside and collected up his mess. Perhaps God could stoop down for a moment and sort out the Middle East... and Putin, please.

WEDNESDAY 13th AUGUST 2014 [mid afternoon post]
An interesting morning. Over the last few days I have been mulling the events resulting from this ISIS appearance, which now seems to want to be known as IS (Islamic State). That change of name alone declares the ad hoc gathering's inability to understand itself or its intentions, let alone properly explain itself to anyone.
          We are presented with the magnificent film sets Cecil B. DeMille used in 1955, when he shot The Ten Commandments, leaving us puzzled as "in what period of time is today's reality existing": or perhaps asking, In what reality are we?".
          Arguably better than DeMille, we are presented with the factualities of Biblical times. As far as Christians are concerned (and they are unwillingly proactively involved) the only references we need are the Acts of the Apostles and most of the New Testament. The "diktats" of Christ are minimal and mostly expressed in the mode of 'rendering service'. "Church Authority" has developed through priestly arrogance of self-importance, cultivated and forcefully strengthened by spreading responsibility across the wider gathering "we are men, specially educated and therefore in charge". The main reason Islamists do not want women educated, is that it would immediately show up the flimsiness of men's claim to 'be in charge'. The same reason the Catholic Church still straggles behind Protestantism generally and (at last) behind the Church of England specifically.
           Since "all time is eternally present", the modern response to such high-handed arrogance applies across all ages and is simply expressed in one word (two if in polite society) "spherical objects". So, today's reality is the reality of all ages past: both the periods I will use as key for now and the periods of time between them, which for now I will take 'as read'.
If one is of religious orientation then the Universe is God Created. Within Creation is objective rationality. Why is not any religion equally objectively rational? Persistence of one time's standards into another time inevitably creates conflicts. These conflicts are expressed in the terms 'progress' and 'tradition'. Until comparatively recent times the cores of religions have refused to accept the truth of their beliefs: that Creation is a state of continual change. By "cores of religions" I exempt aspects of many religions which have resolved 'failure to move forward with time', where splinter groups have separated from their cores, to reach out for more challenging, or more relevant, horizons.
How does this relate to the news in the Middle East? We are understanding the anguish of all peoples in all times. We are seeing the true meaning of destitution. Charity-promoting films have shown us the poor and the hungry and we have viewed them knowing it is a camera-created shot, deliberately manipulated to stir emotion in the viewer, just as commercial film directors make films for general release for entertainment. Same technique; same purpose; so we take it all in our stride. The Middle East today is the same as it was two thousand years ago; one thousand years ago; five hundred years ago. The same as the Christian world experienced in Europe two thousand years ago; one thousand years ago; four centuries ago. The arrogance of a man or men, cloaked in a communal cloak of 'male supremacy by default of physique, practical and legal authority and ownership of all else' to which the educated, thinking response said, cloaked in the style of the time, "spherical objects". Still, the lesson of humility and the desire and purpose to render service has not been universally learned.
          Basically it is all simply, "Here we go again!". Frankly, it is getting boring. Secularity must rule the roost and interfere resolutely with practicality. The Middle East is simply saying, as it has so often said previously, "Religion is an appalling disaster and is still making a right 'pig's ear' of it", an expression used deliberately in this context. Now that the Church of England has finally got its act together (fifty years ago, when it last refused women even the priesthood, it became socially too embarrassing to claim membership) Anglican Protestantism can now hold up its head and once more march forward, showing religion does indeed have some relevance and is proud and justified in saying so, but please, not too proudly.
          Rome does appear to have a pope who at least has some vague idea of what the job is about. Having put in a banker who understands banking, rather than priestly orientated gamers too over-indulged to have a clue as to what they were supposed to be doing and provided he lives long enough, the catholic and apostolic Christian world has some hope.
As regards Islam that too, in the English speaking world, is beginning to gather adherents who appear to understand what Islam originally intended and are prepared to stand up and be counted for it. Innes Bowen has written Medina in Birmingham, Najaf in Kent: Inside British Islam, published by Hurst and enthusiastically reviewed by Dominic Kennedy in The Times of June 30. Bowen reveals the extent to which so much of Islam is the self-promotion of sheer egocentric, self-appointed nut cases, in direct opposition to what is generally regarded as real Islam. This is why it is so difficult to try and get a serious and meaningful Islamic opinion upon anything that isn't pontificated in a mosque; and even then you need to be sure as to what brand of Islamism that mosque promotes, you need to check out how many of the 1,700 British mosques promotes that particular mosque's opinions, to gain any credence for its pontifications. I have not checked out the the true implications of the following but have been led to believe these are reliable sources for further exploring Islam in a rational manner: Imams on line and JIMAS, quoted from The Times July 6.
          I seem to have mislaid my reference source but it would have been a daily broadsheet (even if in tabloid format) but we have received authoritative statements by well credentialled Islam academics that the burqha, or full face veil, is purely dress sense and not in any manner a requirement of Islam, or modern social western dress. I have previously stated that if an Islamic woman (or any nonIslamic woman) wishes to dress as if desiring to be hoicked across the saddle of a modern John Hanson in The Desert Song, it really is no different from dressing as a punk or a Goth, save in a bank, or some other location where facial identity is a preferred style of dress. It is no different than the expected courtesy of wearing tails or a tuxedo where such attire is an automatic expectation.

SATURDAY 9th AUGUST 2014 [noon post]
Apparently so much so the BBC thinks it only worth while to give us two thirds of the story. Even then, it appears that only Boring is intent on being other than boring by having a day to celebrate being Boring with Dull. Dull appears to wish to remain dull by not having a joining day of celebration with Boring, nor even with Bland, with whom it proclaims it is twinning so blandly by not making much of the connection with either of them and Boring is too interested in remaining boring, by not mentioning any interest in Bland at all. Interesting!

FRIDAY 8th AUGUST 2014 [noon post]
Glasgow has achieved magnificently, hosting a harmony of 53 Commonwealth nations. Such achievement seems to have gone to its head and it has now embarked upon the role of being qualified to adjudicate on a matter of such historical confusion that I for one am completely thrown as to who: is entitled to govern Palestine under what electoral mandate; who actually is in charge of Palestine under what argument of rationality? For Glasgow to determine it knows the answers to this and to what extent the issue has anything what ever to do with Glasgow immediately undoes all the success Glasgow has rightly enjoyed over the last two weeks. So why on earth scupper everything to fly the Palestinian flag from its town hall?

THURSDAY 7th AUGUST 2014 [early after-noon post]
David Cameron tried to sort this all out a few days ago and for some inexplicable reason it evolved into something of a furore. It really is very straight forward. Geographically, we really are all over the place: the sun never set on an empire that became a commonwealth of 53 nations. This simple fact makes a complete nonsense of those asinine enough to say that those Brits opposed to the EU are insular little Englanders. We are indeed a little island whose influence is worldwide, while those keen on the EU are preoccupied with but one small part of the world, comprising only half as many countries as inherently involves the true British interests, which are unquestionably global and have been for nearly half a millennium. We are frequently in disagreement but unlike the Commonwealth, where rows are accepted as straight forward 'rough and tumble of life', the immature EU goes into a nursery style petulant sulk.
          To quote James Randi, magician and sceptic (b. 1928) "No amount of belief makes something a fact". The key fact that the EU refuses to note is that there is as much, if not more, diversity across Europe as there is across twice as many cultures in the British Commonwealth of Nations, yet harmony predominantly exists, as was recently brilliantly demonstrated in Glasgow.
          Running an empire does require some degree of conformity and the most obvious first common denominator is language. This is why the EU requires everyone to learn two foreign languages, because most people will select the most obvious foreign language, English. So the EU deliberately starts off on the wrong foot, deciding it is rational and most cost-effective to have diverse languages on an equal footing, necessitating several times more linguists than would otherwise be required. Immediately, essential administration is overburdened with unproductive overheads: everything from that decision is several more times expensive to implement than if one prime language was chosen. From that point on, any chance of the EU being logical or rational went straight out of the window. Why? Because every other nation in Europe is historically either a failed empire or a much weaker and smaller empire than that built by the British.
          The British acquired dominance for the best of reasons that anyone or entity should come to dominate others: domination was never specifically sought; it was acquired by default of circumstances. Those who would set out to be in direct defiance of basic facts, as James Randi indicated, will be for ever deluded. Flexibility, Adaptability, Malleability comprise the fundamental foundation of Creation. Believe in God if you will or accept the simpler concept of what science has so far discovered. From Easter Island's monuments to Egypt's pyramids via Mayan civilisations, all have left but erratic vestiges of what once was. By what arrogance do we presume that one thousand years from now another civilisation will not be scratching amongst the ruins of our civilisation today, wondering on what on earth we ever did?
          Which species is most likely to survive a total world collapse? The ant. We humans are so great and so marvellous we are not as capable as an ant in relation to basic survival in extreme conditions. That is how great we really are!
          A leader in The Times April 25 was headed "Cross Purposes: the British compromise between church and state is peculiar, irrational and anachronistic, and serves us well." That related to a specific subject but it serves as a general principle across the board. We are a mongrel, hotch potch nation; you have to live with us and be a part of us to understand just what that means: that we are a vibrant nation for living and life. A centralised rigidity is in direct defiance of reality and believing otherwise does not make it so.

Sayeeda Warsi has shown the complexity of Britishness by falling at an early hurdle. This is to be deeply regretted. Being not only the first Muslim at the Cabinet table but a female one her presence was of major significance. Her resignation comes close on the heels of a report in The Times July 4 that another Muslim, Dr Taj Hargey had praised the European Court of Human Rights for upholding a French law which requires people to show their faces in public. This is elementary common sense, although I am not so sure if this covers the need to hold a scarf to one's mouth if one has just had a tooth extraction to counter infection or if, having a shocking cold, one masks one's mouth and nose out of consideration for other people around one if one has to go outside instead of staying at home. Certainly one would not expect anyone to be so witless as to enter a bank wearing something that masks one's face.
          While the article raised the issue that this judgement means the UK could likewise implement such a law, it is present Britishness that elementary common sense is sufficient in such matters. This is where Warsi has failed. She has placed her personal opinion as more important as her duty: her duty to her faith in public, displaying Muslim rationality in contrast to the Islamic witlessness so many others of her proclaimed faith are exercising in the Middle East.
          Yet it is the Middle East that has caused her resignation. Baroness Warsi, when you have a country whose government is so inept as to allow a bunch of criminals to run rings round it; when that organisation refuses to accept the reality of the world as it is; when, to pursue its angst it deliberately blackmails Israel into not responding to wilful aggression because those criminals choose to hide behind, or within, a civilian population and to dig underground tunnels to invade Israel's territory, there is only one response. It is the standard British police response that you do not comply with a blackmailer. They will simply come back for more. So Israel does not allow itself to be blackmailed and retaliates under the circumstances forced upon it by common international criminals. There are no ifs or buts about it. Baroness Warsi, you have betrayed your faith; you have betrayed your own people; you have betrayed the marvellous opportunity you had to show Muslims can and willingly embrace Britishness. You have run away for purely personal reasons of ego. There is no other excuse.
My respect for Liberty varies according to the sense of their announcements. In the same issue of The Times (July 4) Shami Chakrabarti, director of Liberty said, "How do you liberate women by criminalising their clothing? Banning the full face veil has noting to do with gender equality  and everything to do with rising racism in western Europe."
          Balderdash lady, balderdash. Dr Hargey, a Muslim, described the full face veil as an "archaic tribal rag". Gender equality is promoted by making certain presumptions, one of the most significant of which is that in the main (there are always exceptions) women are as intelligent and as educable as men. This means one expects women not to wear the full face veil in public where people might fear they are about to be accosted by a gunman (and some Muslims are transvestites and do dress as women), especially when entering a bank or wishing to have a personal conversation with an otherwise complete stranger.
          Likewise, one would not expect a woman, whose personal desire is to dress as a punk or a mod to turn up for a job appointment as a potential departmental manager in such gear but to dress according to general expectation, including removing rings from her nose. There is absolutely no difference in the principle.
          This is where Nick Clegg is so keen to show his utter uselessness and remind people of how daft the LibDems really are but only does so, like Hamas hiding amongst civilians, when someone else takes the front row. He wants to disestablish the Church of England. This is apparently LibDem policy yet he is an atheist, his wife is Roman Catholic and his children are to be brought up as Roman Catholics. On what basis of logic?
          He claims he is an atheist. So, if he believes in equality he and his wife would surely agree their children be educated in comparative theology including atheism until they are of age to make their own decisions? Where is the rationality of a man being an atheist determined his children should be deliberately indoctrinated into something in which he does not believe?
          How is this parental responsibility? If he himself believes in one thing but is happy for his wife to believe in something different and believes that equality of opinion means allowing the woman to dominate, why is he determined to set himself and his party in direct conflict with the current majority view of the country and try and disestablish the Church of England? Neither he nor the LibDems are remotely coherent!

WEDNESDAY 6th AUGUST 2014 [late evening post]
I am appalled at the childishness of Salmond, clearly floundering out of his depth in any matter of serious relevance and overly concerned at stopping any attention that takes away his perceived self-importance of ruling the roost. This is a man who would be a disaster in any debate above that of county council.

What has been deliberately avoided is the referendum to which the UK is entitled regarding the terms under which any currency union would be agreed. We, the UK, control the terms under which sterling is managed. What Scotland wants is influence on sterling without the UK being asked if it will tolerate such interference.

WEDNESDAY 6th AUGUST 2014 [noon post]
We await the conclusions from the world health conference about the irresponsibilities exhibited by people in Africa, probably through appalling ignorance, in failing to respond competently to the first signs of the Ebola outbreak that obviously has the potential to threaten the whole world. One quick fire way of reducing demand on world resources and bringing rational thinking immediately to the fore. It was Dr. Johnson who wrote, in 1777, "When a man knows he is to be hanged in the morning it concentrates his mind wonderfully."
If the powers that be conclude the world is in danger from Ebola, it should immediately change the entire world's perspective on everything. A more over-riding purpose than individual opinions will determine the erratics of Islam be brought immediately to the physical heel of world requirements; Hamas to be formally recognised as the criminal gang it really is; Palestine to have a truly elected government of its own people, not hoodlums; Russia acknowledge practical reality instead of dreams is the best way to handle Ukraine.
          I hope to see the Scottish debate tonight. The key outcome was Salmond completely speaking utter twaddle on currency. He clearly has no intention of addressing that fundamental issue. The purpose of independence is to control everything Scottish. How can that be when, if that is what is intended, the country uses another country's legal tender? Scotland can only have an influence on the Westminster budget by being in the Union, so being independent places Scotland in a worse position than would wider and deeper devolution within the Union.
          Moreover, if Scotland declines independence Salmond has placed his country in a worse position because surely further powers of devolution will have to be balanced with addressing the Midlothian question: that Scottish MPs do not vote on bills related solely to England, Wales and Northern Ireland which bills could have an influence on Treasury matters, there again affecting the Scottish economy.

THE MIX THAT IS ALL OUR LIVES [early evening post]
Superb ceremony at Glasgow Cathedral, proving once again that simplicity says everything so very powerfully. Prince Charles was there, greeted by a full trumpet fanfare followed by a full version of the National Anthem, so I presume he was there representing the Queen, otherwise it would only have been half the anthem.
Suddenly, it seems, we have four years of sadness ahead of us but a hundred years ago they thought it would be all over by Christmas, so they must have become increasingly despondent as time dragged on with no end in sight for so long. Some of them would have experienced the warmth of a summer's day; a light breeze carrying the buzz of a honey bee and the scent of blossom against the rumble of guns a few miles away; or in summer gardens comfortable at home but worrying over when, if, the next letter would come to tell them of their loved ones. Not yet knowing if their loved one was with that group just blown to pieces by a shell landing in their midst and they have yet to be told, perhaps a week or two later, while still waiting for that next letter; or perhaps, having just been assured by receiving that latest letter, after the event and still not knowing no other letter would follow but the fateful telegram.
          The reality of Gaza, of Ukraine, of Ebola in west Africa: the third world still existing almost as it was one hundred years ago despite the western world's humanitarian advances; Islam as archaic as Middle Ages Christianity and still there are aspects of Christianity which pigheadedly will not learn from the examples set by other aspects of the same faith.
          One minister's missive for last Sunday reviewed the diverse and changing opinion within the clergy of the First World War where he sensed a return to tradition. ["Nothing so concentrates a man's mind than that he will die in the morning".] The minister had previously stated, in a report on the recent Synod on women bishops that while he supported women bishops he was sad it took the Church of England further away from reconciliation with Rome. Nonsense. It is for Rome to move forward and catch up with Anglican England not for England to go backwards and revert to the archaic concepts of Rome.
          One of the many aspects that came out of the service in Glasgow's cathedral was that we should learn. How apposite our remembrance that we are trying to contain several specific skirmishes, while remaining ineffective on such issues as world poverty; free and unquestioned universal suffrage and education across gender, race and time. This is the twenty-first century and we still have pockets of the frightened and insecure who can only handle their fear through physical aggression over others, not the debate and validity of rational argument. Putin: a frightened man. Aspects of Islam in complete confusion, causing chaos amongst its adherents, creating uncertainty from which fear derives. Anglo-Catholics smiling towards Rome but lacking the conviction of becoming Roman Catholic, while surreptitiously persisting with the capital "C" in place of the lowercase 'c' of an Anglo catholic and apostolic church to which they actually belong.
Incredibly a very opinionated American reporter took issue against President Obama yesterday for his honest admission that the United States had behaved appallingly badly to "some folks" immediately after the 9/11 tragedy. She is a supposedly modern day, educated reporter of renowned competence. If at that level intelligent people can be so insanely asinine then it shows some understanding of how purportedly educated people, presuming to be found spouting religion can cause so much chaos when caught up with their one-sidedly bigoted view of how such matters should be interpreted. No wonder religion, across the diversify of its versions, is in such a flaming mess.

THE MIX THAT IS ALL OUR LIVES [late evening post]
Miliband clearly panicking he is not in the news so burbles twaddle to draw attention to himself. The Gaza situation is highly complex: hence competent government maintains a judicious caution in commenting. A clear statement by Miliband himself that he and Labour are simply not fit for government.

THE MIX THAT IS ALL OUR LIVES [early evening post]
Twitter provides immediacy of response; Facebook a personal interchange with wider sharing opportunities; my own web, for business and personal use, providing a more measured response, which builds an historical archive, equivalent to a personal journal. I am not a regular journal writer but from time to time I have so indulged and found the historical record useful. It is why I object to the EU's perception that history no longer required should be ditched. Nonsense. What once was still is and should remain as the record. To remove the evidence is to denude facts of their reality and leaves history the subject of gossip and unfounded tittle tattle. Rumour is only of value to those afraid of reality and if we obfuscate reality then we really are at sea without a rudder and a compass. So why set sail? Setting sail upon the voyage that is a life time is why we are all here. Every record made is a page to be addressed when we sum up our life's experiences and gauge how far we have travelled; how much further we might have travelled; how much further we have travelled than at earlier stages we feared we might not, or never thought of those horizons we did crest; better hone the time and road ahead in case we have a longer period than we might otherwise have thought we had: that is living.
          So, the personal microcosm in the web of the wider macrocosm. Today I was emailed about an old school acquaintance, one Anthony Hopkins CBE, recently departed for whom his old school is holding a memorial concert on Sunday September 14th. Widely renowned nationally and particularly in world music circles, yet also a very local man. It was only recently he was in the pew opposite me as the Bridgewater Sinfonia played one of his own compositions at a St Peter's Church concert.
So, addressing the local view and its impact upon the wider world. No better time than now, commemorating the start of the war to end all wars, when the news is full of local skirmishes in diverse areas of the world, any one of which could become an explosive moment from which another world-wide war could develop. Or could it? Does mass instantaneous communication mean that we disparate many, spread throughout the world's vast expanse, could, remotely snuff out any possible spark, where ever, by simple weight of opinions expressed? Perhaps a large number of us will be despatched by a simple bug from a local area in Africa where ignorance still presides and showed itself in complete inability to take basic precautions in time? The majesty of a world civilisation of modern sophistication crumbled to dust as meaninglessly as the Egyptian pyramids or the Maya  temples, from which another species a millennia away, might try to ponder why on earth we created these ruins?