Vote Clump

Vote Clump.
In the room with the stuffed elephant,
Pin the tail on the wonky donkey.

Vote Clinton
Vote Trump

Free lunch and free passes
To narcissist arses
Her claim
His catharsis

Both lead to disaster
Just same pace or faster

World brace as the States
Choose which end of the clump
Will deliver their Rapture
And capture the sucker punch.

Our own worst enemy

There’s a juxtapositional dissonance that haunts our socio-political atmosphere. Like looking but not noticing how your eyes are taking turns at keeping closed.

David Cameron expects a hundred separate factions in Syria to unite around their complex histories and myriad agenda to make a common cause of peace and civic stability. The Labour Party can’t unite just two basic factions who claim, habitually, to share, in common, nearly every cause.

There are sixty-plus million people in this country, self-identifying with any number of every conceivable tribe and demographic and none. But no matter because nuance and perspective are on extended sabbatical so, if you have no idea where you belong or are more inclined toward the none group, there are plenty of people who will happily supply you with a label or two.

Refugee crisis, climate change, scroungers, terrorist sympathisers, Trident, values, etc, etc. Each, a captured meme, irresponsibly loaded, wound tight and released into the wild as a springboard for an emotionally charged and polarised population, fuelled by paranoia, cognitive dissonance and easy bias.

A great deal of the binary manifests as dumb and lazy stereotyping by vitriolic attention-seekers. It is irritating and unpleasant and it’s hardly conversational or constituting rigorous, healthy debate but, usually, the passion is still understandable, even if the right or reason is questionable. Its real harm is in the incremental traction that degrades us all, albeit slowly and less obviously. Still, over time, if polarisation intensifies because it is being incited, even the most reluctant will be forced to choose a corner.

And, increasingly, many do behave as if it were their very duty to directly harass, de-platform, even intimidate and physically hurt any person, public or private, into ‘correct’ thinking or silence. This is the free speech and free will of self-importance and superiority that mocks Free Speech and Free Will. Acting like and treating each other as enemy contestants on a cheap reality show, editing for outrage and sensationalism, has consequences: groupthink and censorship are in conflict with one-upmanship and hedonism. This, as Britain debates how to deal with the terror of Da’esh, a fascistic conviction of religious hysteria, currently claiming and exacting domination and punishment of others as a duty, gifted from God.

We are told: they hate us, not for what we do but for who we are* – Is not what we do informed by who we are? Are we, then, as a Society, as factions and as individuals: are We** acting genuinely, from within ourselves or are we behaving quite out of character? We are well aware of the authoritarian character of our Government that throws its ill-considered, exploitative weight around the world and meddles at home, to divide us and diminish our freedoms and rights. We know it doesn’t trust us. It probably doesn’t even like us. And our fixed horizon is down to more than Media framing and the fractured state of opposition. It is us, too. If we are our own worst enemy, we are outnumbered.

Perhaps, in the grand scheme, we are undergoing a collective right of passage and Humanity’s psyche is negotiating a higher puberty but I listened to Hilary Benn’s rhetorical turn and I thought: Here We are, not only subject to a Machine that holds our democracy and universal values in contempt but We hold us in contempt. We hold our values in contempt. We hold our belief in tolerance and decency in contempt. Here We are, with our own tide of petty, tribal fascism. The Conservative Government tells us that to thrive in the global race, We must be competitive. At this rate, we will beat Da’esh to it and defeat ourselves.

 

*Of course they hate us. They’re an anally retentive death cult.
**Pronouns are interchangeable. I use ‘We’ (and ‘you’) to include anyone or everyone, generally and so as to avoid singling out specific individuals.

It’s you, Conservative government. Please stop.

Please, Conservative Government, stop putting Britain’s people down. It is fatuous, unpatriotic and downright rude. You are our government; our leaders and representatives. You are privileged to hold the highest offices of public service. Why do you disrespect us so easily? Don’t you like us? Are we embarrassing you? Why do you keep speaking at us and about us as though we were the ones who are letting you down?

Stop selectively comparing us to other countries and other people to bully us and mask your inadequacies. This inferiority complex is yours. It is insulting and becoming tiresome to hear you carping on with your political envy. If their peoples work longer, earn less and have fewer rights, then that is not a competition I wish to enter. In fact, I would prefer that you openly disapproved of such economies. But stop, too, this flippantly pitting of our regions, counties and cities against each other. Stop expediently pointing generalised and judgemental fingers at people. And, please, stop expecting us to be grateful for your mean-spirited crumbs. It is our bread that you are eating.

And stop peddling paranoia to the xenophobes and stop perpetuating scarcity myths over resources that you are squandering. We do not lack the means but that you lack the political will. We do not lack compassion but you lack integrity. We do not lack aspiration; we do not lack gumption and we do not lack self-respect but that you would strip us of dignity and decent opportunity. We do not lack social cohesion but that you keep fostering fear, division and discontent.

Who is in charge of our country’s finances? Who is formulating our country’s policies? Who is devising our country’s laws? YOU. Who has been in charge for the last five years? YOU. Who, in that time, didn’t build enough housing; didn’t train sufficient doctors, nurses, teachers…? Who has denigrated and undermined public service? YOU. Who has introduced welfare reforms without first creating an economy in which this is justifiable? YOU. Who perpetuates a socio-economic system that requires the exploitation of your own citizens? YOU. Who makes blanket policies based on simplistic and insulting stereotypes? YOU. Who is blithely building on and recreating the same conditions that got us into such a fix in the first place? YOU. Who has bent over backwards to accommodate the hyperbole of bigots and Chicken Littles? YOU. Who governs by dubious moral whim? YOU. Who gambols greedily around on the world stage like an oversized and untrained puppy, begging to join in, no matter the recklessness and disingenuousness of the cause? YOU.

Who is ignorantly and wickedly cutting away at the very heart and soul of Britain? YOU.

Who is the biggest threat to the security of our isles, our economy and our families? YOU.

YOU. YOU. YOU.

You are the Government. You are responsible for the tone, content and quality of your narrative and you are responsible for the consequences of your governance. What we really lack is the practical wisdom, maturity and the competent service of an honourable leadership. Change your attitude and behaviour. Stop. Turn around or get out of our way.

The Ug of the Smug

Who cares about legality –
It’s black and white, if we like,
As and when it feels right –
And Mammon loves solutions
With a sense of finality
Coz principles are pricey
And equivocation suits us nicely
As does your stuff
And you’re not competitive enough

You cannot be electable
If you are not susceptible
To neocon depravity and popular banalities
Coz our way is the highway
And you’re just a formality
What has economics got to do with morality?
There you go again
With your troublesome causalities
Oh, my bleeding heart
Don’t start about Humanity
The planet is too small
For your lefty, needy rights an’ all

You mustn’t win
Just us! Just us!
You can’t come in
Oi! Who the hell taught you to swim?
Well, sell your soul
Get a loan
Buy an aspiration phone
Be a good serf
Know your worth
Or find a ladder of your own
But leave the All Right Jacks alone

What’s ours is ours
And so is yours
That’s why we help you fight our wars
And you oblige so well with yours…

Misc.

Have the eclectic quirks
In people’s online heads
Replaced the curiosity shops
Wherein, among
The bits and bobs
Of whimsy and antiquity,
We browse, instead,
For random gems to spot?

Nigel Farage equivocates his inner spark (again)

The People’s Army’s jolly Chief of the General Staff,
whose inner motivation sparked
another ghastly vision of his yearning for
the follies of the past, remarked:

I’d scrap this damned Equality Act
that puts us on a level
with the European devil;
telling me that I am just the same
as those I try so hard to blame.

For years I’ve led the nation
in the art of dark recrimination;
crafted an irrational hate
in passion for old-fashioned state.

Of course we should discriminate
for others’ fates
according to our personal tastes.
Quick! Man the gates!

And anyway, an anti-ist and -ism law
is “out of date” the old fart underscored.
I think our kingdom was a better place before,
say, forty, fifty years ago
(or several centuries more.)
Besides, where is the bigot’s right to hide?
the dinosaur guffawed.

But a nifty spokesman for the kippered ones,
foreseeing consternation, swiftly sought to reassure,
placating: Nigel speaks for everyone
who lives in times of pure and silly-simple yore

and then of course, anticipating indignation,
came predictably expedient reframe,
as shifting, shameless Farage head-bobbed
ever keen, his own views of dystopia
to rapidly disparage…

[Some had,
apparently,
quite wilfully misinterpreted the words he said
and should have heard the ones he spoke out loud
instead of cheerfully exposing the hysterics
underpinning UKIP’s ethics
and ignoring all the merits of a chauvinistic bloke
to undermine the monochrome myopia
that makes his potty party colour-blind
and spoil his little xenophobic joke.]

Will Pit

Stop trying to save me!
Are your Will and conscience
Greater than are mine?
Are they more refined,
Correct, important,
Valuable or something?
Do you actually presume
To tell me your design for me
Is better than the one
My own Self does perceive?

For,
Is it not conceivable to you
That, as an adult, what I deem
Acceptable for me to do should
Be of no concern to you unless
My doing is a harm upon another?

And,
If that should be the case:
Aren’t you persuaded that the Law
Or ‘God’ would have more
Sanctionable right to punish me
Or stay my Will than you,
My would-be keeper?

Do you think my Soul is cheap?
That I could sell my rights
To my own path? That I’d be
Daft enough to offer shares in it
Or that I’d want to tread on yours?
I wouldn’t dare! I care about Free Will
Too much – yes, yours as well –
I wouldn’t dream to consciously
Manipulate a person’s state
For my own gain. Nor will I let you,
Through some misplaced fear
Or righteous indignation, win that game.

Condone or not – that’s up to you
But neither force your view or worse:
Make out you’re worried for my Soul!

I’ll check the causes and effects that
I collect as mine – for one alone, can
One atone – our karma is our own to
Own so you, pal: you should go, take
Care of thine.

Bigot

You can keep your tiny boxes
To yourself, my fundamental fool
Along with all the certainty
In which you have been schooled
For if I thought obnoxious doctrine
Was a relevant life tool
I’d’ve gladly walked the catechism
Of my own accord

So you can take your pious overreach
And shove it where imagination
Festers in your whimsy, flimsy,
Soul-refining mind and wind your neck in
Lest the reckoning
You beckon in is thine;
You mind your own soul, chum
And I’ll take care of mine.

I can do without your pity
And your precious little wisdoms
And your judgemental prescriptions –
You can stick ’em with
Your nonsense conscience
Where the sun don’t shine
Because, despite your crude reproof
I know I’m fine.

Troll Soul

Some random pest whose
Best is still pathetic ego,
Faux outrage and disproportion:
Has to get it off its chest –
Show what a messed up
Nasty piece of work it is –
So much the jerk,
It cannot get a grip
For, nothing satiates
Quite like the hate
That spills and flows
So freely from that soggy
Mass between its ears
When it appears from
Shadows, clad in some
Hot, uninvited rage, all
Self-provoked and singing;
Seeks a public stage
For its own swill, to crow
And vent its base and
Tragic psyche – all intent
By personal appeal
To censor Will until its stunted
Little troll soul is repealed.