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Monday, 23 November 2020

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Venal, mendacious, corrupt Europoliticos? Surely not!

Yes, curious to see how the final Brexit deal works for the French fishermen too, to whom Macron has stapled his colours.

Watching Macron deal with the consequences of selling his fishermen down the river (no pun intended) into the bargain - a double Ooh la-la! Xmas!

SoD

Well Europe got what it wanted, by any means necessary:
https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/world/the-eu-thanks-joe-biden-for-his-clear-support-in-brexit-dispute-with-the-uk/ar-BB1bjc5i?li=BBnbfcL

It's all down to the fish ...

https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.cityam.com/dont-bid-farewell-to-all-the-brexit-fish-just-yet/amp/

A surreal end to the Brexit tale.

SoD

Whitewall, the liberal left Democrats who are shouting about gaining a majority in the USA should not lose sight that a majority in the UK voted to leave the EU. Biden should keep out of UK domestic affairs.

Jimmy, liberals consider it their moral duty to tell everyone else what is best for them. Majorities of the 'wrong people' mean nothing to them.

Whitewall, majorities of the "wrong people" mean nothing to you. You have lost this election, fair and square and as it's turned out, comprehensively.

I say that in a spirit of friendship, acknowledging your gentlemanly charm in the way you've written to me over the years in other places. It took me a while to realise how extreme your views are because they were so quietly and calmly expressed. Thanks for that.

Its.
Just in case the pedants are out in force.

Mary I doubt the Republicans will stoop to the extreme violence we have all witnessed on US streets since Trump was elected. Your mister Biden is more likely to provoke a major war. I just hope he realises that Russia and China also have nuclear arsenal's.

Mary, you don't know what you are talking about.

My views are traditional, normal and uniquely American.

Mary,

If majorities mean anything to you, then Whiters and his ilk won the election ...

https://duffandnonsense.typepad.com/duff_nonsense/2020/11/libertarian-splitters-2.html

And the Brexiteers won a referendum for which there has not been a majority since Theresa May was prime minister.

This Democracy thing is not all it's cracked up to be. The "Least worst of all possible systems", to paraphrase Winnie. Or rather, it's just re-elected dictatorship without a strong Liberty based constitution to keep the bastards in some semblance of a strait-jacket.

Btw, I think it's "it's", isn't it?

SoD

The results of American elections are only superficially based on ideologies. The great majority of citizens have no interest at all in libertarian, conservative, authoritarian, liberal, or post-modern (woke) political doctrines. In this election they primarily wanted a president responsible enough to handle the covid crisis and stop embarrassing them with vulgarity and conspiracy theory tweets.

Well Bob, you've made my point for me: While not "the great majority of citizens" as you say, but rather merely "slightly less than half of citizens", were too dumb to see past vulgarity and conspiracy theory tweets, if they had been bright enough they might have joined the majority who did see past vulgarity and conspiracy theory tweets and voted for principles and a demonstrable track record.

As for Covid, few Western nation's swamps were ever gonna muster the authoritarianism and competence required to negotiate a pandemic - in some ways, thank God.

You can almost detect the free-est places in the world to live but who are also burdened with the most deficient states, by who's top of the Covid deaths per million list ...

https://www.statista.com/statistics/1104709/coronavirus-deaths-worldwide-per-million-inhabitants/

I see you've slipped back to 11th, still not bad, but look at Blighty back up there again in 5th!

I say, well done John Bull!

SoD

Loz, my grammar is shocking. I'm known for my shortcomings in that department. Thanks for proving my point regarding pedantry. I really don't know for sure and I won't cheat by looking it up, but I think that it's usually translates as it is, and I meant it has. Maybe it has a dual purpose? I don't know, neither do I care.

Your views Whitewall are those of an elderly, white, overwhelmingly male, cohort. And by the way, as evidenced here, in no way uniquely American.

You lost.

Glesga, in a spirit of retribution and with apologies to you, your apostrophe (11.09) was definitely superfluous. Ask Sod to explain.

Glesga, I’m feeling bad here. One of our closest friends is a Scottish guy...we have known him for more than thirty years. He turned up a family wedding in his kilt which was fabulous. We love him dearly. He doesn’t like the Irish at all. I get a let off. The biggest joke is when I spoke to his sister and she told me that they had loads of Irish ancestors. The thing is, Doug has picked his side. It has very little to do with reality. He is the guy who I would call up in a bad situation.

Did ye take a wee peek, Mary?!

SoD

Mary,

It's always means "it is".

It's not helpful to think old white guys have a monopoly on right wing beliefs. Over 50% of white women voters voted for Trump.

Mary it puzzles me why Biden is so pro Republic of Ireland and anti UK. The ROI were supporters of Hitler during the WAR. They are famous for their anti semitic and protestantism. They never allowed allied troops on their soil. Is Biden sane?

Loz, no. I can kind of work it out, eventually , and I normally notice my mistakes when I read them back later and are irretrievable. I'm not a checker. I do have enough vanity to try to correct my errors before someone does it for me, but it's a lost cause, I'm a lost cause.

Glesga, I'm very conflicted about Biden but I'm fully a part of the anyone but Trump brigade. He did the job and I don't believe for one minute that it was anything other than a fair victory.

I'm married to a Jew (although I thought he was a vanilla Protestant) and I have loads of family members who fall on your side. We still speak to each other and we always will

Bob, I didn't know that over fifty percent of women voted for Trump. How do you know that? Can a breakdown of votes be accurately verified this early?

I have no idea who voted, or which way. I'm confident that the count is accurate.

Glesga,my father was born in Ireland. He was fully in the British army, a medic, one of the last to get off the beach in Dunkirk. (We didn't even know until recently that he was there until the bitter end). Obviously, we knew that he was in the British army but he never spoke of it. He chose his side,

Did ye take a wee peek, Mary?!

No answer.

I'll take that as a yes then!

Or, Bejaysus and Mary, did the Guinness flowing at that wedding go to your heeed and you cupped a wee feel!

What is it about the Celts that they still see the world of 8 billion people through the lens of clan-like segregation: a Left Footer here, a Proddy there, everywhere a Scotsman and a Jew?

It's no wonder you're such BLM / Antifa fodder. They are are to culture what Nationalism is to geo-politics: borders; boundaries; categories of human beings, anti-immigration - no-one shall cross the border because it's "cultural appropriation". Multiculturalism as defined by BLM / Antifa is a replacement for Nationalism whereby divisiveness and conflict can be magnified, the petri dish agar for the pol to thrive in.

You and BLM / Antifa are isomorphic to National Socialism, you've merely transposed the theatre of operations from geography to culture.

If I want to hail Mary, be austere, where a kilt, or work in finance, anywhere in the world, I bloody well will - and so should all 8 billion of us, whether we're effing Left Footers, Proddies, Sweaties or Jews, respectively!

SoD

The Americans, bless their little cotton socks, have a system. It starts with an election and ends with an inauguration. Unless it is shorted by one candidate conceding. All they have had so far is an election. So, contrary to Mary's blind faith, no one has won as yet.

I see this wonderment of how so many voted Trump tells you why such a massive effort at voter fraud was necessary. From a longer piece at "The New Republic":

THE IRONY OF TRUMP’S APPEAL

Trump set himself against the 1 percent at a time when donor-dependent politicians (including virtually all of them in the Republican Party) were unable even to consider that the country might have a problem with inequality. And Trump did so credibly. He didn’t just oppose the 1 percent, he made them sick. That meant he wouldn’t be able to sell out to them even if he wanted to. That was enough.

The inequality that we are speaking of was as much cultural as economic. Trump’s supporters were disproportionately rural and exurban “deplorables,” to use a coinage of Hillary Clinton’s that will be the one thing the average schoolchild is taught about her a generation from now. They were sneered at, condescended to, and lectured about their racial homogeneity, as it were a function of their hostility to diversity rather than of their exclusion from the global economy arrangements that generate diversity. But such matters are often subjective, subtle, and time-consuming to describe except in broad stereotypes. We must turn to economic statistics for an objective description of this great social conflict, even if they leave out its most important psychological and sociological elements.

Trump didn’t sell out his supporters. In fact, his presidency saw something extraordinary, even if it was all but invisible from the country’s globalized cities: the first egalitarian boom since well back into the twentieth century. In 2019, the last non-Covid year, he presided over an average 3.7 percent unemployment rate and 4.7 percent wage growth among the lowest quartile of earners. All income brackets increased their take. That had happened in the last three Obama years, too. The difference is that in the Obama part of the boom, the income of the top decile rose by 20 percent, with tiny gains for other groups. In the Trump economy, the distribution was different. Net worth of the top 10 percent rose only marginally, while that of all other groups vaulted ahead. In 2019, the share of overall earnings going to the bottom 90 percent of earners rose for the first time in a decade.

The Democrats have a plan to fix that.

SoD,

You think a majority of us are dumb, prudish ingrates. Why do you hate America?

Mary,

52% of white women voted for Trump in 2016. Actually estimates for 2020 range from 46% to 55% of white women voting for Trump:

Look under "race and gender" for 2016:

https://www.cnn.com/election/2016/results/exit-polls

You can see the various results for 2020 here:

https://cawp.rutgers.edu/comparison-2020-election-surveys

Probably within the next several months the statisticians will reach a consensus. Non-white women voted for Biden overwhelmingly.

Add to that, married women leaned Trump, unmarried leaned Biden.

Mary, my uncle James Clark was evacuated from Dunkirk. He was a King's Own Scottish Borderer KOSB. He served with them in India from 1928 until 1936. He was called up immediately when war broke out. He was given home service with the Seaforth Highlanders on his return home. I gave his discharge papers and army records to the KOSB Museum in Berwick Upon Tweed England. I also gave the museum a large pictorial booklet of his service in India. I will send his medals to the Museum next year.

Actually Loz, I did answer, in the negative (3.29) five hours before your latest effort at humour. My world view may be constricted but definitely no more so than yours. I know that we don't agree but your aggression is uncalled for, and I agree with you. You can be whoever, whatever you like, wherever and whenever. Just don't pretend tolerance because you have none.

Glesga, I always remember my Dad laughing at Harold Wilson's paltry display of medals. He had many but I've no idea what happened to them. My older brother purloined his army jacket from the attic when he was a teenager...ripped all the colours off and chucked them away. No respect.

So I'm a muscular Libertarian, eh, Mary?

That's what I liked about the Don after the penny dropped: Libertarian at home, Machiavelli abroad.

We need more like that. As Bob famously coined the phrase: "Naive Libertarianism" and drew out a truth that lead to me coining another: "Funded Libertarianism", so have you: "Muscular Libertarianism".

We're going to need that too in the coming conflict with BLM / Antifa and followers - and a plentiful supply of NATO grade 7.62 link from "Them thar hills" (he knows who he is).

SoD

I don't know what you are Loz, except argumentative. Just two things I'll point out. Doug didn't attend our wedding because we didn't know each other at the time. I was referring to my son's wedding and I just loved that he turned up in his tartan. (Which he also wore at his own offspring's weddings). It just made it a bit more special.

As far as I know, I've not ever mentioned BLM or Antifa, My own politics are fairly middle of the road (darn boring in fact) so I'm not particularly enthused by organisations which appear to be divisive or extreme whether they be left or right.

Glesga, I believe that Biden is way past his prime and clearly having some memory problems which are almost certainly age-related. Is he sane? Yes. Will he serve a full term? I'm guessing not. That's always been my view. Is he better than Trump? Absolutely.

Mary,

You're going to hear a lot about BLM, Antifa, and some leftist personalities in the Democratic party. You'll hear about them from Republicans and their fellow travellers around the world, who would like to force everyone to believe, through brainwashing repetition, that anyone who isn't a Republican is a wild-eyed, bomb-throwing, Bolshevik revolutionary at the very least.

SoD,

Apparently libertarianism in the UK could wear any label, since it doesn't mean anything specific:

"Libertarianism in the United Kingdom can either refer to a political movement synonymous with anarchism, left-libertarianism and libertarian socialism, or to a political movement concerned with the pursuit of propertarian right-libertarian ideals in the United Kingdom which emerged and became more prominent in British politics after the 1980s neoliberalism and the economic liberalism of the premiership of Margaret Thatcher, albeit not as prominent as libertarianism in the United States in the 1970s and the presidency of Republican Ronald Reagan during the 1980s.

Currently, the most explicitly libertarian party in the United Kingdom is the Libertarian Party. However, there has also been a long-standing right-libertarian faction of the mainstream Conservative Party that espouses Thatcherism. UK voters have tended to vote more in line with their position along the traditional 'left-right’ division rather than along libertarian-authoritarian lines, and so libertarians in the United Kingdom have supported parties across the political spectrum."

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Libertarianism_in_the_United_Kingdom

In the UK it's just a device that lets you accuse everyone of being wrong. Since you support a BMI, you lean toward the libertarian socialism ideal unless it's inconvenient at the moment.

One for the Ages

https://www.nationalreview.com/corner/elderly-woman-euthanized-to-avoid-anguish-of-lockdown-loneliness/

"This time, doctors approved her. Russell would not have to go through another lockdown in her care home. “She just truly did not believe that she wanted to try another one of those two-week confinements into her room,” her daughter said."

"But note, for her death, she could be surrounded by friends and family!"

And so we find ourselves.

What did the Aussies do to them?
https://legalinsurrection.com/2020/11/communist-china-escalates-trade-war-with-australia/

Ship more Aussie wine here, my wife can handle it!

Reviewing the comments as they've transmogrified from France to wherever they're gonna be winding up I'll just put my 2¢ worth in:

https://havechanged.blogspot.com/2020/11/conspiracy-theories.html

Y'all have seen me link to that guy before and while I won't even come close to describing him as 'a pal' his readings on the majority of things of which I know a little something about, I tend to agree with where/how he comes down on stuff.

Biden will be inaugurated come January 20th.

And I'd advise against any of that rending of garments stuff 'cause it looks like this winter is gonna be a cold 'un - claims of global warming notwithstanding. Climate Czar John Kerry I figure's got a card or two up his sleeve.

Because I figure 'a number' will read just the first bit of Mark's post leaving the last inconvenient bits to the wind I'll just post it here so 'the chips falling where the chips may' might add to the understanding those such as Bob and "Mary" may then have a fuller appreciation of 'the whys a whole bunch of people "feel" the way they do:

"I mentioned my default settings regarding conspiracy theories above. But regarding the current electoral dispute, particularly that of manipulation of the voting systems, there is an aspect that explains, though it does not excuse, some of the current belief of Trump supporters in such a conspiracy; the Russia collusion hoax."

"As I've written, when the issue of possible collusion between the Trump campaign, or Trump himself, with the Russians was raised in late 2016 and early 2017 I thought there might be something to it. Over the next four years I read more than 10,000 pages of original source documents, not relying upon being told by others what they said."

"If you had told me in January 2017 the Clinton campaign had taken Russian disinformation regarding Trump, disseminated it to the media in an attempt to influence the election and gone to the FBI in order to prompt it to obtain a warrant to spy on their opponent's campaign, I would not have believed it."

"If you had told me in February 2017 that once Clinton unexpectedly lost the election, the Democratic party, federal bureaucrats (including the Director of the FBI deliberately lying to the President) and their allies in the media, had converted the campaign actions into a conspiracy to unseat the new President and, failing that to create an ongoing investigation designed to hamstring the administration, provide a continued series of media leaks, and attempt to trap the President into an obstruction of justice charge, I would not have believed it."

"But, in fact, that is what happened. We had an unprecedented conspiracy at the highest levels of government. The greatest scandal in American political history. And it worked. A November 2018 Economist/YouGov poll found that 63% of Democrats believed the Russians directly hacked the voting results in 2016, an accusation for which there is absolutely no evidence. The Democrats rode this to regaining the House in 2018 and the Mueller investigation would still be ongoing if Bill Barr had not finally stepped in to call a halt to the farce."

"Moreover, those who believe Trump is the victim of an electoral conspiracy need merely look at Democrats and their media allies who for four years have denounced Trump as a Hitler-like figure who is destroying democracy and taking America down the road to fascism. If they really felt that way, why wouldn't they feel justified in engaging in some election fiddling to stop him? You'd do anything you could to stop Hitler, wouldn't you?"

"So while the Dominion conspiracy theory should be denounced and Trump needs to accept his defeat, we are not going to sit quietly and hear lectures from Democrats and the media about "norms" and "conspiracies" when they've been complicit for four years in smashing norms, encouraging the conspiratorial fantasies of their followers, have yet to acknowledge their own shoddy behavior (indeed, they still mock those who say it is a hoax), loss of the last shreds of their integrity, and their own contribution to the destruction of trust in American institutions."

"We are all slowly going crazy and unless we find a way to halt this spiral the outlook is grim."

The first segment of this podcast ought be instructive too:

https://thehill.com/hilltv/rising/527309-rising-november-24-2020

The Dems (and Bob & especially instructive for such as "Mary") should really take to heart everything that former MSNBC person [the female] has to say on delineating between 'fact and hysteria'.

JK,

I was gonna finally leave this thread alone, but since you mentioned my name:

The fact is Russians attempted to interfere with the 2016 election in the ways described in the Muller report. It doesn't claim they actually put Trump over the top. The facts have been misused a lot of ways. For example, Trump wasn't impeached for colluding with the Russians as Republicans claim. He was impeached because he attempted to withhold aid to Ukraine in exchange for (made up) dirt on the Bidens. The Democrats also blurred the lines several ways. So *gasp* politicians played politics. You should be just as exercised by your taxpayer dollars funding 8 repetitions of Benghazi investigation that found nothing.

No argument on how bad all of cable news is. It's still not as bad as social media, though.

Mary, another three years of Trump ( he would get the Kennedy treatment) would have been a treat. The World is no better or worse with or without him. I will bet you ten Bob that Biden will start a major war and the Yanks will lose lots of young dedicated men mainly white..China Russia and Iran have been collaborating. So can the Yanks put enough men in the field to stop them. Biden is isolating my country every day with his EU and Irish site.


The allegation, if you'll recall Bob, was that "Trump's in cahoots with Vladimir Putin." (Sorry about that legalese 'cahoots')

Which, if you'll read the actual Mueller Report you'll find was put to bed. The Horowitz report says the same damn thing.

Glesga, I have more than a few family members who reside in the UK who would be sympathetic to the majority view expressed around here. We argue, but we also let it go because trying to change anyone's mind is an exercise in futility.

As far as the UK goes, and I do still care because all my extended family still live there, I think there's cause for worry. First you vote for Brexit, then you install a serial liar (with a bit of charm to salve the wound, and a modicum of intelligence so that you can distinguish him from Trump who may, or may not, be a little kindly disposed towards the UK), then you hope for the best. And sometimes you place your bets and lose your shirt on every old nag in the race.

Biden is not isolating your country. He's not even president yet, and according to a lot of people around here, he didn't even win the the election. I don't see Biden as a warmonger. Neither do I think that the Irish issue will be too much of a priority for him. He has enough problems at home.

Did you mean shite? That's not a facetious question.

And Bob, I've come back for you. Thank you for your sanity, for your steadfastness, and for your refusal to be bullied into submission. Thank you for saying that it's always means it is. I'll always know that from this point on. Thanks to everyone else for letting me off, punctuation-free.

Just one suggestion, if I may, Bob? Call yourself Roberta, or any other female name and see how well you would be received around here. I reckon that you would notice a difference.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zV67tiwMZlQ

Bob?

Do us both a favor?

Run that up to oh, the 40:00:00 minute mark and listen to right about the 1:45:00 point - later there's stuff discussed about social media (&c) that's passingly interesting but as we neither "do" social media you can take it or leave it.

So far as any concerns I had re Libya; Benghazi to me personally was primarily a footnote - long ago and in another universe I actually stepped foot in the godforsaken place but as I had a clearance then that's all I have to say about that.

So much like your *gasp[s]* at 'politicians playing politics' my *gasp* is that politicians often showboat.

Hope you enjoyed your Thanksgiving Bob in howsoever the manner you'd have chosen in years past.

In lieu of your feeling any obligation to inquire as how mine went I'll just go ahead advising "all the meal[ings] were fine" Except there's likely near a huunert percent chance I got exposed to Covid but since I made it through all the highway idiots getting the 'to's & 'from'' passably done I figure the chanciest bits of living to see six months from now is about the same as six months past.

Maybe a little better now VA tells me I got the antibody.

Mary,

A teacher I had long ago made an impression by using those words about "it's" really loud. I can still remember his voice. You're probably right I'd be treated differently as Roberta in this bunch. Thank you for adding your voice. I agree Biden probably won't be a war monger and will also mention George W. Bush. Republicans still follow the rule of Newt Gingrich, who pushed always demonizing their opponents. He was a major contributor to the sorry state of our politics.

JK,

Glad you had a good Thanksgiving and a mild case of covid. Our Turkey Day was OK too, and I didn't drive anywhere. I'll pass on the conspiratorial thinking about the election and Qanon except to point out Trump might have shot Republicans in their collective foot in Georgia. How do you even find the commentary you link?

Our kind host posts his thoughts on some French thing or other. And we end up as usual with a couple of Americans discussing their politics. Sorry - we now end up with three Americans lobbing comments at each other. How about giving it a rest?

Backofanenvelope,

Why not make a comment about some French thing or other instead?

Mary, Biden is saying the UK must not take decisions he does not approve of.

Mary,

Not being among the most sensitive of men I missed the subtext at first, but please accept that mansplaining is never my intention.

Bob, you're lovely. I didn't mean you. Not at all. Maybe I should have just called out Loz upfront for his "wee feel" remark. Not that it bothered me particularly but men don't get that kind of response. Your explanation for "it's"and what it always means, without exception, was really helpful. Thank you for your clarity.

Backofanenvelope, If you included me in your frustration, I'm not American, and I don't live there. What's good about blogs, I think, is that they veer off course and become a discussion about something else entirely.

Glesga, Biden can say whatever he likes. The UK will make its own decisions.

Mary,

It's too bad David is so demoralized by the current state of politics that he's stopped posting. At least I hope it's that and not covid. It would be fun to have another dissenting voice, and I strongly suspect you could carry it off brilliantly. I'll keep checking to see if David works through his stages of political grief or SoD decides to post more often.

Mary and Bob do I detect a love affair blossoming?

Glesga,

Oh, how you do go on.

I totally respect Bob, because he comes back here every day and hammers his contrary points home. He's an integral and respected part of the commentariat here: reasonable, articulate, and clever. You put up with him because he's not a ranting idiot so he makes you appear tolerant of opposing views, and he's a man. I wouldn't get the same treatment.

Bob, definitely a blossoming love affair! Glesga, we'd get on fine too. If I could meet you both I could choose but I still have a husband of forty years....despite the fact that there was no Guiness at the wedding.

The time difference when commenting from Australia is sometimes problematic. Other times it's a positive boon. David has lost interest and so has handed over to Loz, to a certain extent. Which would be fine if their views aligned, but they really don't.

My suspicion is that David, not being completely senile has found himself at odds with his base. So there's a ton of crackpots screaming about electoral fraud and he knows that's rubbish. It's a bit of a cleft stick. Alienate your readership or shut up, and hand over to your son who despite disagreements over Brexit, is completely in-tune with the Trump movement. The problem is, if someone takes over a blog and its readership, they have to be in agreement with the original writer. There's a chasm here.

Mary,

You make me feel young again, darling. And I'm far better looking than Glesga.

David isn't as conniving as you suspect. If he were he wouldn't have alienated his base. I "met" him on Carpenter's blog. After a time I was more amused by his ability to send people there into a lather than PM's well-written Democratic party cynical orthodoxy. I give David credit for entertaining diverse views no matter his reason. An American right wing blog would have banned me the first time I pointed out the slightest fault in their beliefs.

You might not be surprised, dear, that I've grown to genuinely like David and some of the characters here. They're often good-natured and funny. My best friend in real life describes himself as "to the right of Reagan", which bothers me not at all. In my scheme of things politics is only an interesting side show aside from the violence.

Darling Bob, I love you. Let me count the ways,

My younger brother is a Trump devotee. Not to a demented extent but so far as to think that he's better than the alternative. He's deeply conservative by inclination and party. He is definitely Aspergers and has spent the last ten years studying charts and trends. He is very rich indeed. He has lots of friends..and my closest left-leaning family won't hear a word against him. As my SIL said..."he'll see our children right".

I still argue with him constantly.

Mary,

I most likely love you back in the way you intend. Forgive me for being a little suspicious of your praise. Am I correct that you're an English expat living in Australia?

Your brother isn't a typical example, but he's probably not unlike most Trump fans. Though it might be obvious Trump is the 21st century version of P. T. Barnum, he's become iconic to those who see him as they want to see, and he has some genius at marketing and playing all sides of all issues. He's actually delivered on a few substantial items for the working class and religious right, but hugely for the wealthy elite. The stock markets soar while the majority learn to live with more and more indignity and loss.

It's confounding and frustrating that wealth is so often confused with worth in Western society, isn't it? I look forward to exchanging more thoughts.

Yes Bob, English expat who came to Australia, for an adventure, with young children in tow, and returned home ten years later because they led the way. For me it's a choice between immediate or extended family. Immediate won. All my children live back here despite having been educated in their later school years in the UK. Also, attending the top universities. LSE and Oxford...also Reading which is maybe not so prestigious but not at all bad. It worries me.

My brother is an Asperger's genius. He's made a lot of money and he has his opinions. He lives by himself in a hovel. He'll dole out his millions as he sees fit.

To be clear (because that didn't make sense) we came back to Aus after more than ten years in the UK. The reason being that our boys wanted to come home..so they did. I could live happily in the UK because that's where I'm most comfortable and it's where my brothers and sisters live. Of course, it's not going to happen.

Mary,

My take is that you feel isolated and beset in your current surroundings. You're probably never going to win an argument with your brother, and it appears he's cultivated control over your life. His politics aren't likely the central problem. The best you can do is manage the relationship in a way that's not destructive to yourself. Why can't you move back to the UK?

Bob, I really love Australia and right now it seems to be a safe place. I will always miss England, to a far greater extent than my sons who have a hint of nostalgia, possibly. My daughter, youngest child, Aussie born English raised, completely disrupted at aged fourteen being brought back, has had a very difficult time.

What I miss is the family that we left behind, the sense of humour, the feeling that you get from a society that you've always belonged to, and always will. i wish that I could transport the people that I care about here because they've visited and would love to move to Australia because it's a fabulous place.

All my children live in Australia. That's where I'll live..

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