Sorry, sorry, sorry: Yes, indeed, apologies for failing to show yesterday but, alas, Saturday escalated, shall we say!
But I bring you glad tidings: At last, a TV thriller series of great promise - Hostages on Channel 4, Saturday night at 9.00pm. Total tosh, of course, as most good thrillers are, but with a brilliant opening set-up and already some startling twists. Please, oh god of TV, let it not dissolve into nonsense like Homeland did!
Now you see it, now you don't: Andra kindly sent me a YouTube of an amazing Aussie 'card sharp' which you can watch here:
Even attempting to guess how he does it causes my mind to slam shut in much the same way as it does when I try to work out Einstein's relativity theory. But for sheer incomprehensibility (crikey - what a word!) the European policies of our two main parties (I exclude the 'Cleggerons' and UKIP) take some beating. Does 'Dim Dave' really believe that he can negotiate a 'better' deal with Europe whilst remaining inside it? If, and it's a whopping great 'if', the Tories win a clear majority in Parliament next year, 'the colleagues' might throw him a scrap or two which might just convince enough dummies to vote 'In' at the promised referendum but there-after they will spend the next few decades slowly but steadily winding us further in like a spider dealing with a dead fly in its web.
Gov. Christie falls off a bridge: Various commentators, some of whom I admire, were extolling the virtues of Gov. Christie as a possible presidential candidate, well, they were up until he 'fell off' the George Washington Bridge last week. For those unfamilar with the arcana of American politics, one of Christie's staffers 'suggested' - the strength of the 'suggestion' is yet to be defined - to the boss of the bridge authority that a major traffic jam would be an excellent way of punishing the mayor of the town the other side of the river who had failed to support Gov. Christie in some matter or other. It was roughly the equivalent of one of Dave's SpAds hinting to the Motorway Authority that it might be a good idea to 'repair' the M1 and the M5 in order to teach that Labour-lot 'oooop north' a lesson. Anyway, a total traffic clusterfuck ensued and just as anyone with more than three brain cells might have guessed, the details leaked. To his credit, Christie, having been handed a shit sandwich, manfully did his best to eat it in public at a news conference lasting over an hour. In that, he did better than the 'Mr. Bean' currently occupying the White House who dodges everything. In my opinion, this is just another example of the children running the asylum. On both sides of the Atlantic, senior politicians put their trust in sundry 'youfs' and 'youfettes' who couldn't run a piss up in a brewery. However, with not too much detailed knowledge of Gov. Christie I can't say I'm sorry to see him wounded, there are better candidates for the GOP to choose than him.
"Run, rabbit, run, rabbit, run, run, run": My good friend Richard has just sent me this which he assures me is 'frae bonnie Scotland' but given that the language is impenetrable it might be Mongolia! We must rely on Jimmy for a final decision but in the meantime, if you have nothing better to do - and why would you even be here if you did? - then watch this:
And I thought it was just our own dear old MoD: Why do those 'damn Yankees' keep out-doing us? I was almost perversely proud of the fact that our Ministry of (defenceless) Defence held the world record for total incompetence in the production of modern weapon systems but then along comes America and does it bigger and better and even more expensively:
The U.S. Navy’s newest aircraft carrier, a multibillion-dollar behemoth that is the first in a next generation of carriers, is beset with performance problems, even failing tests of its ability to launch and recover combat jets, according to an internal assessment by the Pentagon obtained by the Boston Globe.
The Globe reported Friday that early tests are raising worries that the USS Gerald R. Ford, christened in November, may not meet the Navy’s goal of significantly increasing the number of warplanes it can quickly launch — and could even be less effective than older vessels. [My emphasis]
Perhaps 'Dave' should think again about building those two aircraft carriers. Or perhaps 'Dave' should just start thinking!
'Humbugged, by God!': Thus, allegedly, the dear old 'Duke of Boot' exclaimed when he learned of Napoleon's thrust into Charleroi prior to the battle of Waterloo. Those sentiments were re-iterated around 120 years later by Ambassador William E. Dodd whose misfortune it was to represent the USA in Hitler's Germany from 1933 to 1937:
"I was put in the position of having been humbugged”, he told FDR, “as indeed I
Well, so were a lot of people but it is much to the credit of Amb. Dodd that he did not remain humbugged for too long. Alas, his warnings sank without trace in the bureaucratic sludge of the State Department (so no change there, then!) but at least he was given, by virtue of his impeccably liberal Democrat connections, private access to FDR and it seems likely that his warnings were heeded by the 'boss' even if a recalcitrant Congress proved immovable. There is an interesting review of three books on Ambassador Dodds at The American Interest.
And talking of corking thrillers: There is, of course, the 2nd series of The Bridge from 'Yerdie-durble-land', the last two episodes of which I recorded last night and watched this afternoon. I must admit that I wasn't too struck with the opening two episodes last week, the story-line seemed a bit thin and obvious, but now it has begun to peel back the layers and I am hooked. Alas, it does no favours either to Sweden or Denmark which come across via the mostly monochrome filming as grey, wet, cold and boring, and the inhabitants having a dress-sense not much better than my own - than which, etc, etc! I remember both countries as much better than that.
We bid farewell to 'Noo Yawk': Well, it's bad enough for 'Noo Yawkers' to inhabit a country run by the most malignant, squalid and stupid administration seen for a century but now the 'shmucks' have elected a total buffoon to actually run their own city. Given the multitude of problems, vexations and hardships facing great swathes of the city's residents you would think that 'Hizzonner's' very first act would be something other than to ban horse-drawn carriages from Central park because of the poor little 'horsie-worsies' who will, of course, now be put down and exterminated.
No rumbles today.