Proud To Be British

I’m back. I know, I come and go, let’s not go into it and get on with the post at hand shall we? Long story short, either my life or my own headspace doesn’t always let me get on with this whole blogging lark on a regular basis, I fall out of a pattern, hit the ground with a thud and it’s hard to get back and up again, the longer I leave it, the harder it gets, you get the picture. Okay, that said, let’s move on.

Jeremy Corbyn. If you’re in Britain, you’ve probably heard that name a bunch already, the supposed terrorist ‘sympathiser’ who doesn’t sing anthems and doesn’t match his jacket with his trousers, a radical, in the good sense or the worst depending on your view point. Corbyn is a man who decided the political scene needed a man who looks like your Grandad, dresses like your Dad and has the idealism of that one friend who shares Upworthy posts all the time, to which I say good show, if nothing it breaks up the monotony of smarmy suit boys. Of course, being a left-wing idealist with certain viewpoints on our military and monarchy, he’s under fire constantly by critics for the slightest thing, usually anything that falls out of sync with how we perceive the average Brit. Latest news, didn’t sing the national anthem at a memorial service, apparently makes him scum worse than those who round children into vans, but let’s face it, had he sung he’d be accused of hypocrisy so he’s damned either way. My question to you reader, what does it mean to be British and what’s there to be proud of?

You hear the phrase “Proud to be British” and you think of the plucky underdog that fought for freedom in the Second World War. Long summer afternoons, cricket, pubs and a people united by adversity. Today, we’re not the underdog, individually we might face our own issues, namely financial crises, but as a nation we’re not the hideously under-equipped but quintessentially heroic warriors charging foreign shores, we’re trained hardcore soldiers fighting the same flames we pour fuel on and then complain when people run away from the fire. If the EDL, UKIP and BNP are anything to go by, the modern Brit is a bitter racist with a shifty eye for anyone not wearing St. George’s Cross on their chest. The common sentiment is that our veterans fought to keep Britain British and that’s true to an extent but they fought for freedom, they fought so that future generations might know peace, they fought to take down a man who was clearly, unambiguously, fucking evil. Hitler wasn’t gunning for England, he was out to get Poland and that’s when we said enough and stuck up for the little guy even though we weren’t too tall ourselves. The Syrian issue isn’t the same, ISIS is bad, don’t get me wrong but they’re an undisciplined mob of bullies capitalising on an opportunity presented by a civil war, a civil war between two sides that are as bad as each other, committing the same crimes they accuse the other of. So let’s be clear, the Syrian crisis is not the same heroic story as World War Two, we are not jumping in to save the day, we are pissing in the same river as every other party involved and pointing fingers at who made the water unfit to drink.

The refugee situation has shown me a lot about our nation, namely that we go over telling them to be like us but if they come here that’s a crime. We told them to stay and fight, like we’d do that. Fuck no, if this country gets bombs dropped, I’m finding everyone I care about, rounding ’em up and finding somewhere to hide. The men that fled, fled to protect families and because they were scared and somehow not professional killers, like most of us. Credit where it’s due, not everyone in this nation is a callous racist but it speaks volumes when people accused these victims of wars of being benefit-scrounging cockroaches hell-bent on destroying us with all those weapons they are clearly concealing in their rags and sacks. You know who else used cockroaches to describe undesirables? That same tyrant Britain fought to overthrow many decades ago – Hitler got people to hate the Jewish in his country by dehumanising them as ‘cockroaches’, ‘rats’ and ‘vermin’, things we typically want rid of. You do that to these refugees, it suddenly seems a lot less horrid when they’re brutally beat by policemen for being where they shouldn’t or when someone one day suggests building special camps for them… and suddenly there is a lot less of them.

Back to Corbyn, I think he is proud of his nation, I think he is just sick of seeing it be steered into the ground by austerity at the helm and ignorance being the bludgeon it beats us down with. Sensationalised news stories make us stupid and angry over absolutely nothing, like him not singing a song. Jeremy showed his respect by attending, give him a break, you mean to tell me your moral conduct is without fault? You sing every hymn and anthem you hear? I want to be proud of this country but lately we’re not doing much to be proud of, we point fingers at refugees, disabled people and unemployed teens for ruining our country, we are punching down to feel validated in our bitterness when our real problem is the system failed us and we’re either dealing with that by getting angry at passersby or a revolution based on apathetically doing nothing. Conservatives won the election with less than 30% of the vote, that is messed up, that is wrong, why aren’t we more angry about that? You wouldn’t make a decision based on that percentage. Why are we not angry at the newspapers printing horseshit? Why are we angry at those who need defending rather than those who own most our wealth and undermine our society through cuts, cuts and more cuts, through plans to sell off our services and spend our tax money on fighting in places we know so little about? Does it not seem weird that the biggest threat to our economy and security is the people in charge of it?

To conclude, don’t buy into the shitstorm that’s brewing around Corbyn, it’s a smear campaign blowed out of proportion, things taken out of context (i.e he doesn’t think Osama’s death is a tragedy, he thinks the fact he was just shot and tossed in the sea a tragedy, as a human being he deserved a trial and a burial, executing him like that is no less barbaric than decapitations with a machete, only the tool is different, not the intention). Corbyn might be this, that and the other and maybe he is a nail in Labour’s coffin, maybe he isn’t, what will be the final nail in our coffin though is hatred and ignorance. Britain should be trying to lead the way, to be the rational sibling of America that we tell ourselves we are. Britain prides itself on being civilised, on being the scrappy do-gooders in a ruck so let’s be that again. Come on, Britain’s great, we gave the world Doctor Who and Tom Hiddleston, we got knee-deep in dirt and blood for righteousness, we introduced the idea that those who write laws are accountable to them – the Magna Carta, the basis for democracy as we know it now – so why should we also give the world heavy doses of racism and media nonsense even Murdoch wouldn’t try to pull over our eyes

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The Debate About Debates (Originally Published – 7th November 2012)

Well folks, it seems that in the end of it all, Barack Obama managed to hold onto his position for four more years and personally, I’m looking at the fella and thinking ‘You got lucky this time round, now you’ve really got to pull your finger out your ass and fix America or they may well take up lynching again’ However, I suppose Obama worked hard to get re-elected and Romney presented him a real challenge in the early stages of the debate (Not so much of a challenge after the 47% statement and the Republican’s response to Hurricane Sandy) So now America is looking towards Mr Obama and hoping, with what they have left, and in all honesty, I’m really not sure what’s gonna happen at this stage. To be honest, this win for Barack Obama will either mark a new age of hope and happiness, or reconfirm the fact we’re all up shit creek without a paddle.

The democratic systems of the western world have forever been flawed concepts, having been based on flawed predecessors and though perhaps a better alternative to a single dictatorship that some countries have or had, we essentially see the same thing each time round in every country. America falls into a two horse race between Republicans and Democrats then get to choose the shiniest of two turds to make decisions for them for four years. I have no right to judge, being a Brit commenting on the entire thing, but America essentially got to choose between the world’s greatest optimist who lacked substance or a religious tycoon with an ego bigger than the United States themselves, whoop de fucking do. I mean, Barack Obama essentially bleated on about ‘Gimme another chance, I can make a change’ like he was desperately clawing back his ex-girlfriend, the USA, and eventually the USA gave in with rosy red cheeks and open arms, whereas Romney just based everything on being rich and powerful and whilst he probably had the ability to dig the country out of debt, he’s more messed in the head than Charlie Sheen’s nightmares. I don’t even know where to start with the earlier candidates, like motherfucking Vermin Supreme and Sarah Palin… yeah, less said about them, the better… Though running for president on the basis of giving away ponies and dressing like Gandalf survived an explosion in his garden shed is impressively bizarre.

So you’re probably wondering what I am actually ranting about? I can’t really be specific this time round; I’d say politics but that’s too vague and a true rant about politics would take me forever to write. I guess I’m just being my usual cynical self and looking at the world of politics as steadily getting more and more shit. At least America has some interesting characters over there they can vote for, the beloved soul-singing, hoop-shooting cool guy or the unashamedly brass mega man of money and Mormonism. Americans amongst you, let me tell you what Britain has to show for their political leaders.

Firstly, there is current Prime Minister David Cameron, a rich and posh imbecile who reckons he’s a man’s man, but doesn’t even sniff a common sausage roll without travelling across the country to find one to prove he’s just like everyone else, only he has money and we don’t.  Apart from the fact he loosely resembles a featherless penguin’s abortion, David Cameron is a man so monumentally out of touch with the real world, he thinks that £65 a week (In the region of $50) is enough to buy a house, pay the bills, have all the latest technological gadgetry available and have a HDTV with satellite. Excuse me but I’m pretty sure that’s not the case. £6500 a week, maybe, but £65? Really? Scarily enough, this fantasy land fucktard runs the nation and thinks he’s made it all better. If he has, anyone living in a house and not a mansion has yet to notice.

Second to David Cameron is his trusted sidekick Nick Clegg. Nick Clegg was supposed to ushering in an age of liberty, freedom and happiness but in the end, Cameron beat him but not by enough to be the sole party in charge and so Clegg joined with him to form a Coalition. The combination of these two is paramount to seeing Lucas and Spielberg work together on a film, the world is gonna suffer through a contorted mess that might have been great once upon a time, but never again. During the debate prior to our last election, Nick Clegg was the only candidate not focused on slagging off his competition and actually sounded promising but I suppose a bright future is too much to ask for this grey country. Nick Clegg is now only known by the reputation he has as David’s lapdog and the most charismatic thing he’s done in ages is become an auto-tuned parody on YouTube, courtesy of disappointed university students (Who are probably bankrupt and in massive debt thanks to his inability to keep a simple promise. You had one job Clegg, ONE JOB)

And the third horse in the race actually resembles a horse, Ed Milliband. You know it’s a shame his teeth can’t just bite through the heads of his opponents or he’d be the Emperor of the Universe. Gordon Brown finally melted, having looked like dripping wax during his time as PM, and they replaced him with one of the Inbetweeners. Ed is the photo perfect image of a nerdy stereotype but with none of the Star Wars trivia and an addiction to repeating his previous sentence at least twelve times in slightly different ways. For a long period of time, this man faced a career in which none of the general public quite remembered his name or knew that he was leader of the Labour party but now, he’s fairly easy to point out to anyone, bar the odd hermit and floating voter. Ed Milliband completes Britain’s terrible triumvirate of gormless faces that will be trying to run the country, each one an expressionless, mindless drone that wasn’t born from their mother’s womb but rather, assembled by suicidal elves.

I worry about the future of modern society all the time but the most worrying thing about the world is the people who run it. To me, the entire planet is controlled by people who know fuck all about the places they live in and the people they represent. I suppose politics is such a complex business you can’t have the people represent themselves, they wouldn’t understand how to do such a thing. By the same token, I don’t promote anarchy because we do need a government, sadly. However, I feel like the higher-ups need a reality check, a reminder that the people of the world are relying on them to serve the greater good. A radical move here would be to do away with the lot of them and start over fresh, including the economy, but that would take forever to do and is most likely impossible. I won’t pretend to know shit about economics, other than; I’m poor but probably better off than a Greek housewife. I hope to God that one day, there is a politician who genuinely stands up for the common man, isn’t in it for money or power, and says ‘Look, this is a fucked up system. Too much money for too little people, how about I even that out and make some changes’ I won’t be that man in my lifetime, haven’t got the ability, and no doubt if ever there was a man who would genuinely make life fair, he’d be shot in the head by a man with more bullets than brain cells. I’m surprised Obama wasn’t shot in 2008 to be honest, thought his dreams of change would be his death warrant. I think it says a lot about this world that we want things to improve but without too much change or by despising those who can make our lives genuinely better.