The trial has just begun of Oscar Pistorius for the murder of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp, but, virtually alone amongst the many commentators and broadcasters covering this huge media circus, I am willing to predict to ATW readers right now the outcome of this hugely-expensive circus.
He will be found ‘Not Guilty’ despite being almost blatantly guilty of this murder, based upon one thing, and one thing only. Not the colour of his skin, not for the language of his birth as well as his culture; no, he will be exonerated of all charges because he is a Sportsman. He may be white, he may speak Afrikaans as well as English, he may well be as guilty as sin, but because he is supremely good at what he has achieved in athletics, and because he has overcome the significant hazard of having no proper legs by running on carbon fibre blades.
Even if the jury has a majority of black-skinned jurors serving on it, they will return the ‘Not Guilty’ verdict because he is supremely good at running faster than any other disabled athlete, and faster than many able-bodied runners. He is a minor god in their eyes, and we all know that ‘gods’ can do no wrong!
I am advised by an English Pensioner , in that the jury no longer serves; but, and it is a very big ‘but’, I doubt if even this black judge will go against the tradition in both black and white South Africa, and imprison the adored ‘Blade Runner’ for the murder of his girlfriend. As I remarked previously, ‘Gods can do no wrong’
One of the many things which marked the Communist philosophy of the old Union of Soviet Socialist Republics was the belief that there was no such thing as private property, everything belonged to the State, everyone was equal, notwithstanding George Orwell’s comments; and the only loyalty was to the State. The fact that the leaders of that bloody revolutionary State, who murdered so many millions of Soviet Russia’s own, and placed millions more in abject poverty, considered themselves above the law in regard to that property, is perhaps beside the point. They did believe themselves better, and more worthy of special treatment, to the extent of building their own suburbs where the èlite, or the ‘Nomenklatura’ could insulate themselves as the new ‘ruling class’ from the workers, the peasants, who were treated as little more than slaves of the new aristocracy.
But the old ideals of ‘no private property’, of a blanket desire to make all do as the new Czars of the old Russia decreed, lives on today in the minds of some here in the West, despite ample demonstration that the old systems, the old ‘Communism’ just did not work. These people still believe that the old traditions of the Communists should still be allowed to grow in the ‘wasteful’ fields of the capitalist countries who watched as the original communists shrivelled and fell. They still believe in the ‘Communist ideals’ which call for all property to be ‘communal’, that no-one should be able to choose if a property they have purchased should remain empty, or even to be able to choose to whom they either rent to, or sell that property to if they so desire.
People such as David Ireland, chief executive of the Empty Homes ’charity’, which campaigns for vacant homes to be made available for those who need housing. “It will be shocking to ordinary people.” This clown believes that there should be no such thing as private property, and the ‘homeless’ should be allocated homes from whatever housing stock is unoccupied, for whatever reason, simply because it is ‘immoral’. Where does this clown get his audience from? The Guardian; where else!
Reading and hearing of the death of Sir Tom Finney this morning, I was reminded, once more, of our shaky grip upon this existence that we cling to. As most ATW readers will be aware, Sport holds very little sway upon my mind and thoughts, as I consider most of the proponents of modern sports, and just about all the so-called ‘stars’ and ‘slebs’ to be a pack of self-promoting, addle-pated, selfish prima-donnas, whose ability in their chosen sport has been parlayed into a huge money-making machine.
Role models? Heroes? When the likes of Ryan Giggs, a footballer whose ‘clean-living’ image was parlayed into a huge array of sponsorships was found, after the removal of not one but several ‘super-injunctions’ was found to be leading such an amoral lifestyle as to have sex with his brother’s wife over an eight year period is portrayed as a role-model; no wonder men of my generation shake their heads in silent sorrow.
When still quite young, my brother’s heroes were the likes of Jackie Milburn, whose statue bears the statement, “A Footballer, and a Gentleman” and such an accolade was deserved. There are very few public figures whose funerals have stopped a City, but Jackie’s did, for it was the biggest display of public emotion ever displayed within Geordieland’s capital city, and deservedly so. But men, who could be addressed as men, such as Milburn, Matthews and Sir Tom Finney, took their work seriously, and their fame lightly, and perhaps that is the real difference between the heroes of my generation, and the slack-jawed clowns who pirouette on Premier and Championship grounds up and down this land. They who, if scoring a goal, which is after all what they are paid to do, go running and sliding around, waving their arms and literally stating ‘Look at me, how clever am I? How wonderful it is that I have scored. Aren’t I a genius?’
The shades of Finney and Matthews would surely be slowly shaking their heads in disbelief! Those two men, who after scoring, would trot back up towards the centre-line, perhaps nodding at a fellow player who had aided their goal, are giants compared to the pygmies who inhabit the cluttered spaces between the goalposts today, and the world is just that bit sadder for the passing of another of those legends who have simply, gone before!
When posting the other day regarding the ‘right to die’, as proposed by certain, shall we say, individuals with their own special axes to grind, I linked the whole piece with the decision by Belgium’s Parliament to ratify a Law which will give children, “Children”; the right to make their own decisions on whether to end their lives if they are suffering from a terminal illness, or are in insufferable pain, or ‘hopeless medical conditions’; or any of the other emotive terms which liberal do-gooders give to human conditions which are, in present medical knowledge, incurable.
I know that the Belgian conditions are written down with great scruple, and foresight, and the wishes must be agreed with parents, and medical professionals, but, looking at the whole grizzly idea from across the Channel, I tend towards believing that the ideas behind this disgusting and terrible Law are just the logical outcome of systems and thoughts of people who truly believe that they, and they alone, know what is right for everyone else; and these beliefs stem from a time when monstrous names bestrode the world’s stage. Names such as Josef Goebbels, Martin Bormann, Himmler, and of course, the painter, poet and friendly genocidal Adolf Hitler.
Some may well recoil, and claim that I write in a knee-jerk reaction against a well-ordered and documented ideal which will lessen the trauma and suffering of children who face a lingering, painful death. True, I write in total opposition to such a Law, but I would remind readers that it is within my own lifetime that the elderly insane and demented were targeted by Nazi functionaries who, throughout their lengthy trials, claimed they were ‘following legal orders’. The Germanic ideal represented by that evil slogan ‘Befehl ist Befehl’, or ‘Orders are Orders’; and as such are to be followed without demur or question, were seized with great enthusiasm when the ‘Final Solution’ was planned and orchestrated at Wannsee, because the Nazis knew that the minor functionaries and both senior and junior soldiers, when presented with such terminology as ‘Major Operation’ as cover for the massacre of 34,000 Jews at Babi-Yar near Kiev, would obey without question. Similarly, when the doctors and administrators charged with murdering ‘incurables’ were told that they were members of the ‘Public Ambulance Service Ltd’ (Gemeinnützige Krankentransport GmbH), they killed the feeble-minded because they had been ordered to do so! They never, ever, thought of questioning their orders because they knew that orders, from ‘on high’ should never be questioned, because to question ‘orders’ was to question the very authority of the German State, and that was a process which only led to one doorway, and that was marked ‘unreliable’.
So I hope that King Phillipe, the Constitutional Monarch of this troubled nation, has the guts to remain true to his Catholic Heritage, and refuses to sign this Nazi decree into Law, Constitutional Crisis or no!
Taken from a Spectator essay by Christopher Booker
Among the millions of words which will be expended over the next four years on the first world war, very few will be devoted to explaining one of its greatest legacies of all, the effects of which continue to dominate our politics to this day. One of the best-kept secrets of the European Union is that the core idea which gave rise to it owed its genesis not to the second world war, as is generally supposed, but to the Great War a quarter of a century earlier. It was around that time that the man who can be described as ‘the Father of Europe’ was first inspired to the detailed vision which only after 1945 was he finally in a position to launch on its way.
More than a decade ago, when I was working with my colleague Dr Richard North on a history of ‘the European project’, nothing surprised us more than how completely historians had failed to uncover the real story of that project’s origins. Furthermore, this was not merely of historical interest. The missing piece of the jigsaw gives us such a crucial insight into the core idea which was to create and shape the European Union that the failure of David Cameron and our present-day politicians to take it on board makes much of what they are today all saying about Britain’s relations with ‘Europe’ just empty fluff.
The story began just after the outbreak of war in 1914, when two young men were appointed to organise the shipping between North America and Europe of food and vital war materials. One was a now forgotten British civil servant called Arthur Salter; the other was the Frenchman Jean Monnet, a former salesman for his family’s brandy firm. By 1917 they were so frustrated by the difficulty of hiring ships from all the international interests involved that they had a radical idea. What was needed, they agreed, was a body armed with ‘supranational’ powers to requisition the ships, overriding the wishes of their owners or any national government.
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This Police Officer does this:-
and then sues for constructive dismissal because he is ridiculed by his unfeeling colleagues, and gets
magine you, and your family, live in a large apartment complex in a suburb of, say, New York, or Washington, or even London. The way things are, these days, you will be living in amongst maybe four or five thousand other people, all going about your individual and family lives. You maybe know possibly a half-dozen other families in the whole complex to greet or speak with, nod to maybe a few dozen more as you pass in the elevators or entrances; but, as a rule, that is about it for social contact wherein you live. If a member of your immediate neighbour’s family comes down with an violent case of stomach upset, vomiting, diarrhoea, etc., you might be involved if they ask you to contact a doctor, or even to call an ambulance; but beyond that, you are not involved. Your home is completely separate from theirs; your services, water, sewage, gas, electricity, come independently to your home, and there are strictly observed barriers against cross-connections especially in the areas of water and sewage.
But just imagine if you package that same huge block of flats into a compact metal shell, ensure it actually floats, add on some massive engines for propulsion, a crew to help maintain and steer this huge floating town, bring along various entertainment and gambling enterprises, as well as a huge inventory of food and booze ; and you get a completely different ball-game. You & your family are in possible ultra-close contact with everything touched, eaten, evacuated and breathed by some six thousand others; and all it takes is one who doesn’t observe fastidious cleanliness in their personal habits, and; bingo; you have five hundred-odd cases of Norovirus, a cancelled cruise, and a massive problem to sterilise miles of piping, hundreds of steel pressure vessels and valves to cleanse it of bacteria which can multiply in thin air.
Welcome to the exciting world of mass cruising!