remembering St John Fisher and the monstrous King Henry VIII

Posted in humbug alert, opinion on June 22nd, 2011 by george

On this day in 1535, the great John Fisher was beheaded at Tower Hill in London. He shares this feast day with his friend and fellow martyr, Thomas More.  They both forfeited their human lives for refusing to acknowledge Henry VIII’s claim to be Supreme Head of the Church in England and for upholding the Catholic Church‘s dogma of papal primacy.

Henry VIII is often popularly viewed as a lovable rogue, a champion of wine, women and song. In fact he was a monster, who set a precedent for the sort of self centred greedy bastards who have been running this country ever since. Marrying 6 times, he pioneered a complete disregard for the sanctity of marriage.

Central to his Reformation manoeuvres was the dissolution of the monasteries, who until then had provided for the impoverished in the form of land for them to cultivate and live on. This land was taken away and given to his cronies, creating a new landed gentry beholden to the crown. It is claimed that a fifth of England’s landed wealth was redistributed in this way. Suddenly there were tens of thousands of dispossessed poor with nowhere to go, and no means of support.

Henry had created a new underclass. This alienated much of the population outside London and led to a northern uprising, the Pilgrimage of Grace comprising some 30,000 rebels. Their leader Robert Aske was arrested, charged with treason, and executed along with some 200 of the rebels. This put an end to the disturbances.

How was such a fiend allowed to wield such absolute power? To this day the English are accomplished at murmuring and complaining, but have little enthusiasm for revolutionary action. So the prevailing bullies go about their nasty business, encouraging the population to drink up and forget about it. Cheers mate…..

Click to share this post with friends.

For more great content, remember to subscribe to my RSS feed. Subscribe

Tags: , , , ,

vote with your heart

Posted in humbug alert, opinion, rants on April 30th, 2010 by george

Poor old UK. Whatever happened to us? What used to be a haven of soft edges, a little run down and shabby, like your favourite old armchair, has evolved over 30 years into a shiny, brittle, trashy landscape of concrete and glass and plastic. Where benign eccentrics once lived quiet, extraordinary lives of their own devising; there now predominates an army of media junkies wondering who they are and what they are supposed to do next.

I hold Margaret Thatcher and every jackass that followed responsible. Now in 2010 a fresh but frighteningly similar bunch of goons are asking that we elect them into power. They speak blithely of ‘change’ and ‘the common good’ and ‘a brighter future’ in tones that wouldn’t convince an 8 year old. In fact all they can honestly promise is that the will more or less perpetuate the stagnant, diseased behemoth their predecessors so cynically threw together.

They keep insisting that a vote for anyone other than one of them(the 3 main parties) is a wasted vote. Can we wake up now please? What’s on offer is a media-savvy slew of snake oil salesmen. Its all about what you are being seen to be rather than what you are. Who are they? They barely know themselves. All they are qualified to do is appear at ease among TV people and journalists. The real world? I don’t think so. You wouldn’t want Jonathan Ross to run the country would you?

The only thing worse than voting for one of them is not voting. Make a little effort. Its not too late to go out and form a personal opinion about one of the alternative party candidates. You will probably find that you like them much better. They probably wont win this time round. But every vote the same old greedy bastards don’t get is a nail in their coffin. They have to go. Lets make it sooner rather than later.

Dont be afraid. Vote with your heart.

Click to share this post with friends.

For more great content, remember to subscribe to my RSS feed. Subscribe

Tags: , , , ,

wasted votes

Posted in opinion, rants on April 11th, 2010 by george

Conservative, Labour, and even Liberal Democrat pundits are fond of saying that a vote for anyone other than a major party candidate is a wasted vote. I’d like to suggest that the exact opposite is true. Voting for any of these dinosaurs is helping perpetuate the miserable mess they have made of our country, and by association, our world. It is a lazy, spineless option.

How many of us are truly passionate supporters of these gangs of greedy bastards? This is a time when the Australian voting system would serve us well. Australians are required by law to vote, but there is an extra box on the ballot paper enabling voters to register there dislike of all the available candidates. Were we given that option in the UK, and we voted honestly, it would make for some interesting arithmetic.

If we are to have fresh blood taking over the reins of government, we have to vote for them. Yes they may lose at first, but the more people that vote for minority candidates, the more others with similar convictions will be inspired to do the same. And the more the incumbent fat cats will tremble in their custom made loafers. Instead of allowing the status quo to discourage potential future alternatives from running, we can positively encourage new candidates to step forward.

The only wasted vote is not voting at all. Don’t let the big boys fool you. They don’t care about you. Vote for someone who does.

Click to share this post with friends.

For more great content, remember to subscribe to my RSS feed. Subscribe

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

I live in a shopping mall

Posted in opinion, rants on December 6th, 2009 by george

st catherine'sI live in the old English university town of Cambridge. Along the river Cam, are some of the most beautiful old buildings in Europe. A trip I never tire of is a punt ride down this river, from which vantage point, the buildings are perhaps best admired. Far from the traffic, the lapping of water against the side of the boat as one drifts past the colleges that have stood there for so long has a deeply calming effect.

mathematicalThis is indeed a venerable ‘seat of learning’. Great men and women have studied, researched and taught here for centuries. Many students have gone on to become world leaders or captains of industry. The feeling of proximity to the ‘corridors of power’ is tangible.

Yet on a trip to town on Monday, it was all to easy to forget this side of Cambridge. Read more »

Click to share this post with friends.

For more great content, remember to subscribe to my RSS feed. Subscribe

Tags: , , ,

just say no

Posted in how about?, humbug alert, journal on November 14th, 2009 by george

santaLast night I spent the evening watching the tube. November 13, and already TV ads are working their dreadful sorcery. An endless list of gift options and food and drink items for the feast, now a mere 6 weeks away, are paraded before hapless viewers.

Why does this still affect me? Its not that I want to rush out and buy all this crap, but rather that I feel guilty because I don’t want to. The arch winks and sly grins of a high sheen cast of glamour cats and kittens, would have me give in to their blandishments and START SPENDING MONEY!! Read more »

Click to share this post with friends.

For more great content, remember to subscribe to my RSS feed. Subscribe

Tags: , ,

no borders, please!..

Posted in opinion, rants on September 24th, 2009 by george

namibiaA long time ago, someone for the first time drew a line in the sand and indicated that everything their side of the line was theirs. And thus was the first border created. So began the long human history of border disputes, fights and wars.

From determining which part of the vegetable patch was whose, the use of borders grew to define first villages, then cities, and eventually countries and empires. However, one fundamental objection remained unanswered.

How can anyone claim exclusive ownership of even a grain of sand? Read more »

Click to share this post with friends.

For more great content, remember to subscribe to my RSS feed. Subscribe

Tags: , , ,

hope

Posted in journal, opinion on September 21st, 2009 by george

I watched the above this morning, and loved it, but by the end of it my chuckling was a little hollow. If George Carlin was right, and it is very tempting to believe he was, then there is no hope whatsoever of changing or influencing the status quo. In worldly terms, our predicament is hopeless. At best we are doomed to be, as John Prine once sang, ‘…happy sailors dancing on a sinking ship…’

This got me pondering the nature of hope. Read more »

Click to share this post with friends.

For more great content, remember to subscribe to my RSS feed. Subscribe

Tags: , ,

we dont want them here, we dont want them there….

Posted in opinion, rants on September 17th, 2009 by george

jungle_1483532cIn these times of easy travel, there is an unstoppable tide of ‘migrants’ heading for our materially blessed lands. They come from parts of the world with a daily diet of poverty, despair, violence and death. They are attempting to do what the bravest of us would do in their place. Against overwhelming odds, they want to escape a terrible life, to create a good one. They are our brothers and sisters.

Yet in every developed country, armies of angry, frightened citizens focus on protecting themselves rather than helping those in need.

The French authorities have undertaken to close down the ‘jungle’ of makeshift shelters and tents affording temporary homes for migrants around Calais. Where do they expect them to go? All this guarantees is that their miserable lives will be made even more difficult.

It fits in with a pattern of persecution of the less fortunate by governments everywhere. If you vote and pay taxes you must be protected from those that dont.

Heres a personal message to ALL world leaders. There is only one GOD, and you are not it. ALL God’s creatures are equally entitled and deserving of your respect and care. As long as you are protecting the ‘greedy bastards’, you are one of them. A greedy bastard, that is.

Click to share this post with friends.

For more great content, remember to subscribe to my RSS feed. Subscribe

Tags: , , ,

stamp your democratic feet

Posted in opinion, rants on September 10th, 2009 by george

I became aware yesterday of the stand-off brewing in the US concerning Healthcare Reform. Today I heard from my American son in New York who is just finishing up his last year of training to become a doctor.

I wont pretend to be sufficiently knowledgeable to explain what is happening. However like you, I can glean an impression from the deluge of reporting and comment we are being inundated with. Its not a pretty picture.

The basic right, within what is still the wealthiest nation in the world, of every citizen to have access to basic health care, is still being denied. It is being discussed again, thanks to President Obama’s current initiative to implement some major policy changes. What are the chances of success? Read more »

Click to share this post with friends.

For more great content, remember to subscribe to my RSS feed. Subscribe

Tags: , , , , ,
Get Adobe Flash player