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Radio Silence

No, I haven't forgotten about my blog. I've been busy with other things, and also I've not really felt like commenting on the madness of Westminster. Clearly "the people" only get one half-assed vote in order to determine the entire future of a country, yet May can have meaningless votes on her stupid deal over and over again. The first time gave her the biggest defeat in modern times. Possibly since Henry VIII (because he's about the only important person in British history). Her second attempt also resulted in defeat after whipping her own ministers (having previously promised them a free vote). So essentially she's just going to tweak the "deal" and keep on presenting amended versions until it passes or everybody dies of boredom. Funny, isn't that what they used to accuse the EU of doing?
As if that's not bad enough, it seems as if this past week the Brexiteers voted against Brexit, the Remainers voted against Remain, and everybody voted to replace the laws of gravity with unicorns.
I give up trying to work out what the hell is going on.

All I can say is that there is a very clear case now for a second referendum. Parliament has utterly failed. The exit date is, like, two weeks and they're still arguing about how much Brexit is enough, and even whether the government can re-introduce the threat of a "no deal" exit (that was firmly voted down) because - get this - they think that threatening to crash out will give the UK leverage.
Maybe they don't understand that the deal presented was supposed to have been presented to the other 27 countries to be properly ratified on their end before the exit date. That's why this was supposed to have been concluded last Autumn. But no, it looks like Westminster will still fail to make its mind up in the final hours. Perhaps they failed to get the message regarding the recent chaos on Eurostar and the ferries as customs officials run full exercises in preparation for Brexit - Europe is already preparing for a crash-out. It's the same reason why asking for extensions wasn't met with instant approval from the EU. They're sick of this shit, as should be any sane British person.
They need a second referendum. And so that one side has no more voting weight than another, this new referendum must contain the exact same question as before - to stay in, or leave. A binary choice. If the result is still for leaving, then hold a second referendum with options as to what degree of leave the people want (Norway-like, May's deal, crash out, etc). Anybody who complains about the hardship of voting for something twice does not deserve the benefits of the democracy they supposedly believe in. When the French elect a government, they vote four times (twice for the President, twice for the Senate).
But, at any rate, that we have come to this state of affairs means that the politicians have failed. It also means that it is extremely clear that the people did not know what they were voting for, as we have almost come to the end of the Article 50 period and the politicians still don't know what they want.

So, really, what is there to say? For all of how the English mock the governments of "banana republics", it is astonishing that they are behaving in an even more ridiculous manner.
It is also astonishing that they are happily engaging in so many of the things that they used to complain about the EU. Big mouthed unelected wally shooting his mouth off? They'd complain about Juncker, but I see Farage is on the telly again. Holding referendums until they get the response they want? This is May's tactic. At least the EU didn't force everybody to vote a certain way like May did (and still managed to lose).

So, yeah. There's not much to say because none of it makes sense any more.


Vegan murder

It seems that vegans have been making the news for minor acts of terrorism. Attacks against butchers and the whole "meat is murder" thing. Because clearly their opinions are more worthy than those who eat meat so...

Here's something to ponder. We can accept that making scrambled eggs is a bad thing because we are taking the seed, the embryo, of an unborn chicken and smashing it to smithereens and then applying heat until it is cooked. That's a chicken that will never become, because it became dinner.

Explain to me how humous is any different? Humous, if you don't know, is a gloopy paste made of pureed chick peas. In other words, to make it we take hundreds of the seeds, the embryos, of unborn chick pea plants and smash them into paste.

Now, I do understand the idea that animals can feel pain. If I was to go up to a sheep and kick it, it would react. If I was to take a 12 bore and shoot it in the ass, it would likely react quite noisily. Much the same as if the shotgun shell was fired into the backside of a human. Animals are not so different to us (technically we are a species of animal), so we can imagine and understand that they feel pain.

Plants, on the other hand, we do not understand. They don't bleed, exactly. They aren't capable of vocalising fear or pain in a way that we understand. It is clear that plants lack anything that we recognise as a brain, nor do they appear to have a nervous system. However they do respond to various different stimuli. Is this a basic hardwired behaviour, or is it that plants are more capable than we imagine, we just aren't able to understand how. That nice smell when grass is freshly mown? It's actually a chemical release from the savaged grass intended to warn nearby plants that something horrific is happening. Plants are not able to run away from danger, the best they can do is try to communicate.

So slaughtering a cow is a bad thing? Imagine being yanked out of the ground, thrown into a dark space with many others. No light, no water, no nutrients. At some unspecified future date, being taken out of the box, having the skin sliced off, being chopped into pieces, and then being tossed into boiling water. All while potentially being able to sense these things happening.

Now thing of a loaf of bread. Wheat (or rice if you're gluten free). The plant grows, and dies in the process of creating dozens of offspring. New wheat/rice seeds. That we humans harvest and use in all sorts of interesting ways. That loaf of bread? That bowl of rice? That's a thousand children that had the life crushed/boiled out of them.

In short, there's practically nothing that we humans can eat that doesn't involve killing. It's easy and trite to say "meat is murder", simply because we can see and hear the fear and pain in animals while failing to recognise, understand, or even want to accept that maybe plant life is also suffering for our next meal.

So, I'll tell you what, vegans. I'll stop eating meat if you stop eating plants. Then we'll both die, we'll all die out, and planet earth will breathe a sigh of relief and begin to repair the mess we've spent several hundred years making.


Spring is here

After a mild, but long, winter it looks like Spring has finally sort of turned up. The hottest end of February evah followed by wind and storms (guess what's happening outside as I write this?), but at least flowers are opening up and saying hello.

Japanese Quince:



Sweet almond:

A fancy daf:

And finally some wildflowers (Veronica/Speedwell and Primula/Cowslip):




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Bernard Boase, 15th April 2019, 17:51
No blog entry for a month. Are you well? Or just pissed off? Or on a long holiday in Japan? Or perfectly well and haven't a pain, just living life? We should be told. Best wishes.

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