- Sat May 30, 2020 11:31 am #612249
Sarah Vine's next column might actually be worth a look...
Currently listening to: "Crank It Up (Funkyzeit edit)" by Scooter
Now part-time on Tw*tter @spoonyfrommwf
Now part-time on Tw*tter @spoonyfrommwf
An insight into the difficulties of sharing a king size plus bed with 400 thread count John Lewis sheets to yourself as you’ve forced hubby onto the sofa to repent for a minor moral lapse of judgement.
Like Hobbes and the rest, Gove writes not to persuade but to excuse, with the key difference being that he is both the excuser and excusee.
This real-time Gove-on-Gove analysis makes modern life thrillingly dystopian. It is like we are all watching a Sex and the City episode in which Gove provides an off-screen voiceover on how things came to be as ruined as they are, while never quite addressing the pictures on screen in which he can be clearly seen burning everything to the ground.
Gove begins his latest treatise on self-apologia with the words taken from the prison diaries of the Italian communist theorist Antonio Gramsci. And why wouldn’t he? Only a pedant would point out that Gramsci, who spent 11 years being starved to death in prison because the Italian people had been taken in by a two-bit populist, wrote about the ruinous times in which he lived from the position of having been ruined by them himself. If Gramsci had not been a political prisoner suffering daily brutality and torture, but an actual member of the government meting it out, one imagines his analysis might have been a touch different.
All the usual stuff is there, of course. Of how Brexit was about the liberal elites having lost touch with normal people, and how it was “those who had been forgotten asking to be remembered”.
The Albanian Option. It sounds like a John le Carré novel. You imagine a story with political intrigue, huge sums of money going astray, criminality and double-dealing. And you’d be right. But the Albanian Option isn’t holiday reading fiction — it’s diplomatic fact. Albania is on course to join the European Union — alongside four other countries, Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and Turkey. The already unwieldy group of 28 is due to become a throng of 33. And Britain isn’t just backing this move. We’re paying for it. Every week we send £350 million to the EU. And now millions of your hard-earned taxes are being directed to these five prospective members. Between now and 2020 the United Kingdom will pay almost £2 billion to help these nations prepare for membership of the EU — that’s more than we will spend on the NHS Cancer Drugs Fund over the same period. This bounty will be our greatest gift to Albania since the comic talent of the late Sir Norman Wisdom, that country’s improbable national hero, lit up the dark days of Stalinist dictatorship. Indeed, I wonder if the Albanian people are now convinced that Britain’s Foreign Office is full of Norman Wisdom characters, lovable chumps whose generosity and good-heartedness make them easily gulled into accepting all sorts of bad advice. How else could they explain their good fortune in being on the receiving end of a £2 billion Balkan bonanza?
As Justice Secretary, I am well aware that there are around 10,000 foreign criminals in our jails — and one in 20 of those is Albanian. Of all the prisoners in our jails who come from European countries, 10 per cent come from Albania — yet Albania comprises less than half of one per cent of the overall population of Europe.
Those prisoners currently cost the British taxpayer almost £18 million a year to keep in custody. And that’s before Albanian citizens even have the right to move to the UK! The Home Secretary knows the problem is very far from diminishing. Already this year we’ve seen 20 gangsters from Albania convicted of running a brutal drugs ring in Manchester.
Of course, as the Home Secretary rightly noted, Albania is not the only accession country with an organised crime problem. Albania’s neighbour on the Adriatic Sea, Montenegro, has a breathtakingly beautiful coastline and romantic interior. It also, unfortunately, has mafia gangs, a reputation as a centre for money-laundering and a record for narcotics trafficking. The prime minister, Milo Djukanovic, has been a leader of the country almost continuously for the past 30 years. He started as a Communist apparatchik and friend of the murderous Serbian dictator Slobodan Milosevic. But today he is a fan of the European Union and chummy with EU power brokers.
When was that? I remember him banging on about Albanian villains and thinking we've got no chance of explaining why this hasn't anything to do with EU free movement.Remember Gove trying to distance himself from the less liberal aspects of Vote Leave a while ago?
You wouldn't have won without the Turkey bollocks.Michael Gove has admitted that the official leave campaign should not have stoked fears about Turkish immigration during the 2016 Brexit referendum.
In an interview included in a political book published on Thursday, the environment secretary, who was a key figure in the winning Vote Leave campaign, said that if it had been left entirely to him the leave campaign “would have [had] a slightly different feel”.
They were briefly the footballing bogeyman of choice after Manchester United were Welcomed to Hell and the Leeds fans were murdered. After that they were Muzzies joining the EU.Kreuzberger wrote: ↑Sun Jul 12, 2020 9:33 pmWhat is it with Turkey?
Is it just that the "rather be a Paki than a Turk" hooligans go over there, act the Billy Big-Bollocks, and invariably end up picking lengths of steel from between their ribs?
In broadly related news, once the Kreuzette properly retires and I row back to mainly web-hosting and maintenance contracts, a wee place at the top end of the Bosphorus is certainly not out of the question.
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