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Scrapbook for September 2018

Posted on UTC 2018-09-01 02:01.

07.09.2018 – Lunacy of the Year award

The UK government is in a race with the USA for the coveted Lunacy of the Year award. So far the contenders are neck and neck, but the UK is hoping that its Novichok theme will bring it over the finishing line in fine style. It could be right.

There are plenty of websites tracking the Novichok story in detail. The coverage ranges from the dogged via the obsessive to the deranged. The summary is that the details of the official version of events do not add up. Briefly: the story is a crock from beginning to end.

We oldtimers don't feign surprise when we hear a grey mouse from GCHQ reported as threatening the Russians with retribution using a 'full range of tools'. Except that this is just the headline – the full speech of the grey mouse was actually much more slippery, just as slippery as the statement of the grey mouse in charge of Portland Down had been all those months ago.

It's just amazing, though, how the Novichok affair always surfaces when things get sticky in the Brexit affair. You don't think…? No, the British government is not that devious, surely? Yes, it is.

The Novichok story is the UK government's equivalent of the 'invaluable permanent invalid called Bunbury' in The Importance of Being Earnest, who can be invoked in any case of social embarrassment. The story is as fake as Bunbury was. The people of Britain should really be worried if anyone in their government thinks that anything about this crock story is true.

The Novichok story may be tactically useful, but strategically it has been an utter failure. Three years ago the Russian Republic was regarded by most western observers as a rather seedy political and economic basket-case.

Thanks to the combined distraction tactics of the Democrats in the US and the May government in the UK, Russia is now boxing well above its weight internationally. Even MSM outlets are wondering aloud whether Britain would win a war with Russia. The LotY finishing line is getting closer with each day.

06.09.2018 – Of moles and men

  • I am a secret mole working in secrecy inside the Trump administration to secretly subvert the President's decisions. Vive la résistance!
  • Not so secret now, though, are you? Perhaps you should have kept quiet and continued your heroic work in secrecy.
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Out of its dark element and into the light of day. Image: ©Figures of Speech.

Some are sceptical that the White House mole even exists, yet some senior members of the Trump administration have been publicly proclaiming their own innocence – a foolish act, since it just forces their colleagues to do the same. Each asseveration dignifies the initial accusation a little bit more.

We outside observers are forced to one conclusion: The USA is in a terrible state. Not because of Trump: he has merely exposed all its political and cultural weaknesses. Its constitution is a triumph of Enlightenment hopefulness over practical reason. Its Founding Fathers were noble rationalists who thought that its citizens and leaders were noble rationalists, too. They were clearly wrong.

05.09.2018 – Late summer Tennyson

Some photographs taken this year in late summer, that strange not-yet-autumn season.

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Our solitary aspen, just becoming slightly autumnal at the top.

That time of year when, walking among the luxuriant prodigality of Nature, Alfred Lord Tennyson's (1809-1892) masterpiece In Memoriam A.H.H. (completed 1849) inevitably comes to mind. The 'A.H.H'. of the title was Tennyson's great friend of his youth, Arthur Henry Hallam (1811-1833), who died of a stroke on 15 September.

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Are God and Nature then at strife,
That Nature lends such evil dreams?
So careful of the type she seems,
So careless of the single life;

That I, considering everywhere
Her secret meaning in her deeds,
And finding that of fifty seeds
She often brings but one to bear,

I falter where I firmly trod,
And falling with my weight of cares
Upon the great world's altar-stairs
That slope thro' darkness up to God,

I stretch lame hands of faith, and grope,
And gather dust and chaff, and call
To what I feel is Lord of all,
And faintly trust the larger hope.

From Canto LV

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Long sleeps the summer in the seed;
Run out your measured arcs, and lead
The closing cycle rich in good.

From Canto CV