Monday 3 June 2019


.....And where are the legs with which y'run
When y'first went off t'carry your gun
BeGod yer dancin' days're done
Ah Johnny I hardly knew ya. 

Johhny I Hardly Knew Ya, sung to the same tune as When Johnny Comes Marching Home, is thought to be one of those Irish anti-recruitment songs, like the much more joyful Arthur McBride, from the nineteenth century, each grisly verse describing a different mutilation suffered by the songstress's  now sightless and limbless soldier spouse and concludes with: Ya haven't an arm, ya haven't a leg, yer an eyeless, brainless chickenless egg, and ya'll haveta be put with a bowl to beg, Ah-ah, Johnny I hardly knew ya. 

There are massed, defeated armies  of such songs, although the people who write and perform them really do believe - in a true, sincere, showbiz fashion -  that they make a difference but I have been hearing them all my life from  the dreadful Pete Seeger's Where Have All The Flowers Gone? right up to the dreadful Neil Young's Shock and Awe and not one of them has dented the commerce of militarism. Waste of fucking space, protest songs. The opium of my virtuous g-g-g-generation;  Blowin' in the Wind, eh, it's like the electric car of it's day, utterly pointless, irrelevant pomposity. Oh, wow, man, like how many roads, man, how real is that, man; Masters of War, man, it, just, like heralds a whole new age of Peace, man.  The whole idea of Protest Song  is bizarre, singing isn't protest, singing is fucking ShowBusiness. A general strike, that's what you call Protest; an LP record is an entertainment.

People, some people, les  uniformistes sauvage , just love signing-up, dressing-up, tooling-up and fucking-up. Conscription is one thing, voluteering to spill your intestines, lose your limbs or lay down your life for some faceless billionaire shareholder  in GlobaDeath, that's just  inexcusably stupid, dying for the rich;   there might've been an inarguable case for poorboys taking the Queens poxed shilling in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries but there isn't now.

I was sitting, anyway, a few weeks back, in a hospital clinic waiting room. I'm there three times a week, outpatienting my way to dusty death, and I feel some ownership of the space.  As well as a couple of women in an open-plan office-cum-reception there was another patient on the chair opposite  and although we exchanged no words - I never do, talk to people in the hospital, saying, if prompted, Sorry, mate, I'm here for treatment, not society -  there was a quiet, amiable patience between us.
 It's not as harsh as it seems, refusing to chit-chat, it's right.
Many people see a hospital admission as a chance to nervously gossip, pointlessly flirt with a weary, uninterested nurse and bore the shit out of their neighbours when what they should be doing is  shutting the fuck up and trying to understand and remedy what it is that brought them into hospital at everyone else's expense and inconvenience and how to avoid it or more crucially just trying to stay alive.  Life is all there is. Sometimes in the hospital it's like an episode of Britain's Got Toilets, a wardful of fucking, noisy, wannabe celebrities, believing wrongly that I form part of their captive audience.  I don't care if they're nervous, I have come to detest them.

Shattering the peace of our quiet little enclave came one of Prince Harry's flashmobbers, a soldier-amputee, an utter fucking bastard.
It was a cold day but Tommy was in shorts, so we could all see his metal prosthesis. I'm touchy about these things;  I hate the sight of wounds and mutilations, I can't help it.  I've never been one for stripping off in the sunshine, much too uptight and Presbyterian and now that - since heart surgery -   I have a faded but occasionally vivid scar down my sternum  and another from groin to ankle on my left leg I won't even loosen off a couple of top buttons on my shirt, never mind wear shorts; who wants to see that stuff, even inadvertently, it's like what Oscar Wilde said about not frightening the horses in the street. 

Tommy was swinging his tin leg like those Greek ceremonial guards do, almost up to his stubbly chin, he could walk fine on it but he just didn't want anyone to miss it,  I hated him on sight; he had a pig's head, shaven and shiny and his whole body was inky with DeathBe4Dishonour maxims, snakes'n'daggers and successive sweethearts' names; everything about him was unwholesome.

He went to reception and started trying to hustle a fiver for  travelling expenses, it could only've been 'busfare but he wanted it badly, nobody was gonna get in his way.  I though it was taking the piss because in Swindon or wherever he hailed from he'd have paid his own 'busfares; patient  travel expenses here are usually to cover ferry and airflight costs which are significant.  This prick, however, was intent on bullying a fiver from people unused to rudeness such as his. 
  Knowarramean, knowarramean, Babes, a fiver's a pint to me, an that pint could make all the difference, ha-ha, knowarramean, a fiver's a fiver at the endatheday, Babes.  I 'ope it ain't gonna be like this in the new 'ospital;  I mean, there's gorrabeabetterway'n this, int there,  Babes, knowarramean, knowarramean. I'm only sayin' Babes
 I  had my Tommy-this and Tommy that and chuck him out, the brute moment  and started to stand up.

I could just see this creature, far from scrutiny, in Afghanistan or Iraq, slapping Ahmed around and saying to him, 'sgorrabeabetterwayn'nthis, my son, int there,  'sgorrabeabetterwayn'nthis. I could see him and his retarded cuntmates  storing up for us years of  bloody, homicidal  hatred, he's a headchoppers' rercuiting sergeant. I was going to say I blame his parents but odds-on he only has a Mum, who adores his every utter worthlessness, like they do.

It wasn't his lack of erudition that bugged me, broadly speaking I prefer the company of people who didn't go to grammar school, especially my grammar school,  it was his cowardly bad manners that irked; the women he was abusing were laughing but it was from nervousness and either he was too stupid to know that or he didn't care. Tommy needed a good, hard  slap.

Unlike His Hooligan Highness, Prince Harry, and most of MediaMinster I don't think that signing-up and getting your leg blown off amounts to  heroism. A construction worker falling of a scaffold isn't heroism, it's a risk of his job; Prince Harry isn't going to piggyback on legless brickies, is he,  or on drowned trawlermen  or North Sea oil men roasted in a blazing sea;  uniforms, though, flags and guns and medals and marching bands, that's proper  Ruritanian shit,  even though stepping on a mine is actually just a risk of InkyTommy's job.

There are cases where mere survival is rightly adjudged heroism. Tom Pendleton was an honorary uncle to mrs ishmael. After surviving some years in a Japanese prisoner of war camp he flew home, weighing just six stones, thirty-eight kilos, in the belly of a bomber; he never spoke of it but you can imagine, can't you.  I guess surviving those little yellow bastards' cruelties - or cultural differences as we would now be expected to say - took some balls but I don't think the returning POWs were called heroes. Lose your leg to an IED, however, and you become a modern-day Horatius at the Bridge
I remember, years ago, resurrecting the idea that there should be a covenant between HM parliament and her armed forces - if you did get maimed on active service you wouldn't have to sit on a street corner selling matches for the rest of your days, that you wouldn't have to be part of or depend on charIty banditry; that seemed fair to me but it hasn't happened.  Despite Snotty, Cameron and Clegg and Tracey May sourpussing every November at the Cenotaph Tommy still sleeps on the streets, is disproportionately unemployed,  imprisoned, prone to addictions and unless he does celebrity amputee wheelchair Antarctic trekking to boost the image of a Ruritanian playboy prince-ponce, ignored. Rather than properly care for him we, cheapskating, call him hero, simultaneousy trashing real heroism, which does sometimes distinguish the filth of war.
Really, he shouldn't have gone,  Tommy, should have waited to be conscripted.

Standing up, I had rehearsed what I was about to say: Oi, mate, can you keep it down? This is a hospital, there's people sick, in pain, worried, maybe just bereaved, just a minute ago. It's a hospital, not an Aldershot bar, mate. A'right? Knowharramean?

Maybe he'd have shut up, maybe even apologised, maybe we'd have come to blows, in which case I'd have kicked him in his bad knee but just as I stood up he left and I sat back down again. Mmm, said my hitherto silent companion, a war hero, eh?

Snotty Brown, the angry half-wit,  

Shooting wogs, it is the right thing for the country.

 sent Tommy into Afghanistan, in order, he stuttered, to keep terrorism off the streets of Britain. Well, it didn't did it?  Ask the Mancunian concertgoers or the Westminster Bridgers.

Brown's then SecDef, drunken Glaswegian bully, John Reid, in his own utterance One of Labour's BigMen - I think he's five-five in his shirtsleeves - said that  not a shot would be fired in anger against Tommy

John 'without a shot being fired' Reid's £50,000 Iraq security job | Daily Mail Online
Former Defence Secretary John Reid has secured a £50,000 job with a private security company operating in Iraq and Afghanistan.
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 but it was, wasn't it?

Reid, in retirement, has earned hundreds of thousands from the Afghaniscam. I say earned but its just bribes.  And in that time about three hundred squaddies have lost one or more limbs in that endless stupidity. If the Rcd Army couldn't subdue the Mujahadein, what chance Her Majesty's First HeadBangers? 

Here's the poisonous wee cunt in one of his other sinecures, as chairman of his beloved Celtic Sectarian Child Molesters FC. Four successive managers of the youth team have been nicked for noncing. 
Nothing to do with the cock-waving  little shit, Reid, of course, who just gets drunk and bullys women.

And when he's not busy doing his security stuff in Kabul - probably selling British defence secrets to Organised Crime - he'll be  cheering on his football team of foreign millionaire prats and he can always cop three hundred quid a day plus subsidised haute cuisine in the House of fucking Lords.  None of this is secret, people can still read in the North East, in Merseyside, in the Gorbals and all the other places savaged by successive governmental policies; why, then,  would anyone join the armed forces, when people like Reid are in charge?
This is what one of his employers - CounterTerrorExpo2020 -  says about Reid 

"Lord John Reid is one of most experienced Cabinet ministers of modern times.  He has held more ministerial posts at Cabinet level than any other politician in recent history.  In range of portfolios, and in breadth and intensity of change management across departments, his experience is unparalleled in British history. "
And that's why we bought his sorry ass.

A vicious Trot turned organised criminal.
Shifted from ministry to ministry because he was useless and insufferable.
 A bit like this arsehole-in-a-suit.

Lance Corporal Mick Fallon, useless, blowhard sexpest, 
unfit to be SecDef but still fit to be an MP.
In 2018, after being dumped, Mick received on top of his MP salary, expenses and presumably a £37,000 sacking allowance which all bent ministers receive, even jailbird Huhne, about fifty grand in bungs for imaginary work for his  various owners, Fallon's missus, too, is on the MediaMinster payroll as his senior caseworker.

A rotten Glasgow Trotskyite  thug and a redneck Tory spiv in charge; why would anyone in their right mind  join the army and act as human minesweepers  for Uncle Sam, determined, still, as he is, on putting the rest of the world  onto a reservation, feeding us porn and BigMacs while stealing our resurces.

These worthless, thieving scumbags stand up in parliament, cowardly and traitorous and lecture us on patriotism and honour. 
Brown's own typically grandiose imbecile prophecy was gainsaid not only in Afghanistan 
but here, in Woolwich, when the drummerboy got his head hacked away, his blood held up to TeeVee cameras.
 He's not a hero, either, is he, Lee?
Just another victim.

Dunno what Snotty's up to now, apart from giving Scotland, the birthplace of   the Labour party,  to the madbastard tribesmen and illuminating his own natural demophobia by trying his stuttering, gurning best to scupper Brexit, which isn't the right thing for the country, the country which he so successfully buggered that it elected the posh moron Cameron and his posh moron shithead mate, Clegg and plunged so many into Usurous poverty.

The army amputees, then, what do we do about them? We could try telling them that their wound is their own fault, they didn't have to go on a rich man's expedition;  that they shouldn't delude themselves that Uncle Sam  or HM government give a flying fuck about poor Afghan women and children, not when they don't give a fuck about their own poor and oppressed; that  in most cases their wounds  will have resulted from bad luck or carelessness or both. It's not my fault, mate, cover it up, deal with it,  if you keep shoving it in my face I'll rip it off and beat you with it.  I don't accept for a moment that it is GoodDivesity, that we should Celebrate and applaud  our fellows' mutilation, nor that we should be blackmailed by it;
 tact and sensitivity to others is important,
 discretion is the better part
 of valour.

Ideally, of course, people'd just stop joining-up and say Fuck that for a game of soldiers.  If only we could leave the doings of war to the sons and daughters of the rich and powerful; if only war was for Sandhurstees only; Oh, what a falling off there would be in its study.


mrs ishmael played in Shibden Hall as a child, living just across the road from it in Halifax.  We must, therefore, here in the manse, endure each weekly broadcast of  Gentleman Jack. 
I say we but when it's on I go and sit in the garden conservatory and watch the sea; even so, I  can hear the thwacks and thumps and screams as one savage beating after another is administered to some poor peasant or tenant, followed by the slurps and sighs and moans of lesbian sex between the participants. 

Based very loosely on the massive, encoded diary of Ann Lister, which we have on the shelves, here,  the show portrays the bravery of an 1830's polymath manlady stepping-in to run the Yorkshire family estate and doing it just like Annie Oakley, better'n  any Goddamned male sonofabitch.

 Interspersed with an irritatingly jaunty and risque SteeleyeSpanesque folkrock soundtrack,  Lister's and her protagonists' scripts are laughably, impossibly cogent, concise and eloquent; the costumes, make-up and props outrageously anachronistic and the outdoor settings so romantically bucolic that they might've been painted by John Constable. No business like showbusiness. 

Introduced by a breathless, pouting BBC announcer, Gentleman Jack is sadism and titillation, extravagantly produced, overacted and overblown;
if that's what you like  just google lesbian porn and you'll find something altogether more agreeable. 


Good evening. I'm Huw Welshman, with the Ten O Clock Why Brexit Is Bad, from the BBC Tonight we'll be talking to Big Al Campbell, 

 NewLabour's former Impresario of Arson, Torture, GangRape and Mass Murder.  a  gobby, psychopathic, moneygrubbing  guttersnipe, Big Al has tonight revealed what we all suspected : that the so-called Brexit Party is funded by Russia.

Often, viewers, Tony'n'Imelda Blair get all the credit and all the rewards for the illegal invasion of Iraq, the slaughter of millions, the uprooting of millions, the refugee crisis and the utterly predictable emergence  of ISIS and its widespread European terrorist attacks

 but without Big Al's doctored, untruthful, misleading, so-called sexed-up intelligence dossier all those great things would never have happened, look you, Isn't it.

 The glory due  for the Middle East being aflame at a cost of, well, simply endless gazillions of taxpayer pounds and dollars, well, that really  belongs with Big Al Campbell, 'sa matter of fact viewers, having started his career writing pornography, then being a tabloid editor before being enlisted as bully-in-chief by Tony'n'Imelda and then providing the phony impetus for an illegal war you might say, isn't it, that Alastair Campbell's life has been one obscenity after another. And that, of course, is why he's always welcome here, at the BBC where, after all, our motto, as well as Nation Shall Speak Shit Unto Nation, is Brexit Is Bad, Savile Never Happened and Protect Al Yentob's Pension.

Sir John Scarlett  

had his input to the Iraq Dossier, as the then head of the Joint Intelligence Chiefs, dictated to him, word for word by Big Al

We  don't know whether Campbell, as former tabloid trash editor had some dirt on Scarlett but it's hard to see why a senior spook would so clearly take orders from a cunt like Campbell, but that's just what he did.  Asked to comment on IraqGate, Sir John,simply said

Wot ReichsMinister Campbell said.

We must hope, mustn't we, viewers  that Sir John isn't concerned about his place in history;
a sort of sad, male Blair's Babe.

We'll also be getting his take from Sir Ed Davey, for the LibDems, now surging back into power and actually the winners of the Euro election. 

 Ed'll be telling us, for we've rehearsed this thoroughly, that Brexit is now smashed, dead in the water, in fact and proving it by using his own interpretation of what numbers really mean. Ed'll be telling us that with 15 seats in the Euro parliament they are now the largest British party there,  whilst the Brexit party, with simplyonly twice that many seats  seats is a busted flush, finished, just a protest vote.

But now, I'm happy to say that we're talking to London's Mayor,  His Grace Sir Sadiq Khan. 

 Mr Mayor, thanks for joining us, here on Why Brexit is Bad and what's your take on why Brexit is not only bad but suicidal, we have to report both sides of this debate, you see, and that's both of them, isn't it, it's either bad ot it's national suicide, look you. What do you, speaking for the whole of London make of it all?

 Well that's right, Huw, I do speak for all of London; after all, Huw, all of London voted for me. Look, my vote was a full fifty six per cent of the total, so that makes it, Huw, a fucking landslide. geddit?

 Unlike the so-called Brexit result which was only fiftytwo per cent. But even so, even if Brexit had won an overwhelming mandate like my own it would have been meaningless because it was the wrong result.  I wish the BBC would wake up and hear the Imam. I mean smell the coffee.

And is it true, your Worship, that in London more people voted for Brexit than voted for you? 

Well, Huw, that rather depends, doesn't it, on what you mean by more, depends on how much credence you put on mere numbers.

Ah, I see, your Excellency,  even though 200,000 more London  people voted for Brexit in the Referendum than voted for you, they, um, didn't.

If they did, Huw, and it's a big if, because as you know, figures that don't accord with the expectations of your masters are nearly always wrong but even if they were right it wouldn't matter because they would probably have been cast by native British people, who are now, I am pleased to say, a minority in London and in an election about the future of the country the importance of foreign-born people is much, much greater than of those who are merely native here, to the mosque born, 
I mean manor. 
No, fuck it, I don't, I mean mosque.  

So, then, your Holiness, a vote for Brexit is, as we aways say here on the BBC, racist and shouldn't count?   Probly homophobic, too, I shouldn't wonder, isn't it,  and LGB wossaname, queerphobic, is it,  can you say queer, now? Hard to keep up, look you with all this gender stuff, even though it's not gender we're on about, is it, look you, just screeching fucking freaks if you ask me, not that anyone ever does, they just give me this fucking tripe to read out loud.  If I really thought about it I wouldn't fucking sleep at night. If it wasn't for the half million a year I dunno how I'd manage to do it, sometimes.

 Well, they're just scum, aren't the? 
Aren't they Huw?  Brexiteers.

Huw,  I need to hear you say it...... 

Yes, of course, Lord Sadiq, peace and wossanames be upon your name isnt't it, look you, racists, anyone who disagrees with you, filthy, racist scum.

Thassright, Huw. 
A bit like Donald Trump.  Oh, they may have voted for him in the US, but only the racists and sexists.
 Didya know, Huw, and everybody out there, that Donald Trump banned me from America because of my faith?

I don't think he did. Didn't he just impose a six-month ban on people from half a dozen or so Muslim states which had a proven record of supporting Jihadi terrorism?

No, Huw, absolutely not, he banned all Muslims, everywhere, even Nicola Sturgeon, the Queen of Scotland, he banned her, and all Scottish muslims..

But Ms Sturgeon isn't a muslim.......

Well,that's just one of your so-called facts, and he shouldn't come, anyway, not to London.

  But it's a state visit...

 Not my fucking state, Londonistan.

So to summarise, Majesty, election results, here or abroad,  only matter if they're the results which you want and if they don't they are simply wrong and the election must be re-run until the voters do as you say. And in the meantime we must all abuse those who voted aberrantly. Is that right, Excellency,  a fair summary? 

I thought you'd never get it, Huw,
there's a good boy.

Thanks, Boss.


walter said...

The best recruiting poster ever

Anonymous said...

If you google "Anne Lister plaque" you'll have a choice of sources describing the fuss concocted over a rainbow disc erected on a wall in the grounds of a York church (stone's throw from the Minster) - the first attempt failed to use the word Lesbian, so had to be removed and re-educated. To my dismay, the replacement didn't go with something along the lines of "Proper Yorkshire lass, did as she pleased, ate pussy like a starving man" - the least they could have done, really, especially given the presence on the honours board at the back of the Minster of dear old Hugh Sottovagina, which seems like a viable precedent.


Doug Shoulders said...

Not familiar with that song Mr Ishmael, but the sentiment could be one of two scenarios. Either she’s telling him she doesn’t owe him just for a past romance now that he’s half a man. Or they never had the opportunity before he went an enlisted. Poignant either way.
It has been said that, during the British empire, the brutality that the average private was subjected to by his superiors both inside and outside the army was passed on to those peoples that the British army subjugated. (On behalf of the crown of course).
I rarely listen to music with words these days. Orchestral or instrumental is the only thing that appeals. I once thought All Along the Watchtower contained great lyrics. And to me it still does. But they’re all over the place and doesn’t really make sense.

Former Defence Secretary John Reid has secured a £50,000 job with a private security company operating in Iraq and Afghanistan – Says it all really

Oldrightie said...

Some military types have what is known as the caterpillar club. We sternum staved survivors might well be part of a zipper club, I often think. It gets to be normal, eventually. Circa two years or so. Six now gone, I fell bloody lucky and very grateful.

mongoose said...

They are all nasty wee shites. What is it with people that they vote for fuckers like that? Personally I am quite happy voting for Sir Nigel and my local Green lady. She's wrong about most things but will do no harm and she means well in her misguided way. So she's perfect as far as I am concerned - helpless, powerless and honest.

I must also admit to being one of Jezza's three-quid warriors but that was more satire than politics. Likewise were I a septic, I would cheerfully cross my fingers behind my back and vote for Himself. It might be worth emigrating to get a vote in 2020 just so that I could watch Nancy Pelosi's head explode and have a small sliver of credit accrue.

There is a thought doing the electric rounds that Big Al Campbell is some sort of political genius. I cannot see it myself but I suppose we must give him some credit for being an effective bully and propagandist.

Mike said...

Cutting to the quick, as usual, Mr I. Bravo.

Half of me is hoping that Vlad or the Chinks, or even Iran, finally get pissed off and put an end to it all.

Mike said...

PS: I'm not a twitterer, got this link elsewhere, but thought fellow Ishmaelites might appreciate:

Mr SG said...

Mr I, I cannot for the life of me understand why Alastair Campbell is given so much airtime. To the best of my knowledge, he’s never been elected to any office or even stood for one. A discredited spin doctor who should probably be in jail, yet there he is, day in day out, in the newspapers, on the radio, the telly, bleating on about Brexit or worse still his ‘depression’ (a whole BBC documentary devoted to the latter), supplemented by various forms of virtue signalling. If he had a shred of decency, or even shame, he would live out the rest of his life in obscurity - I suspect he will have acquired sufficient funds on his ‘travels’ for it to be a comfortable obscurity. Regarding the ├╝ber-lesbian programme, I got about halfway through the first episode, whereupon it became so preposterous that I switched it off - there is still the odd decent programme put out by the LGBTQI Broadcasting Corporation, like the current Thatcher documentary, but they are too few and far between to justify the licence fee. Regarding Kahn, Trump has it about right - a ‘stone cold loser’... or maybe just another one of the political ‘diminutives’ signalling its virtue to the ‘Brahmin Left’?

call me ishmael said...

It used to be well known that filth like Murdoch didn't print all the dirt they had, keeping the juicy stuff fir a rainy day and I guess that's the case with Campbell, from his days at the Mirror and in Downing Street he must know all sorts, certainly enough to ensure his studio prominence when actually a stray drone should have gone through his ceiling long ago. He may yet become An Inconvenient Lie and find himself appropriately medicated in a tranquil and secure institution, for his own benefit.

mongoose said...

In the national interest, Mr I, is the current phrase of choice.

Mr SG said...

Indeed Mr I - I too suspect he knows where the bodies are buried...

call me ishmael said...

We have spoken of this for years now, mr mongoose, the govament of national interest/ the interest of the national govament.

call me ishmael said...

He must do, mr sg, no other explanation.