Sunday 19 September 2021

The Sunday Ishmael 19/09/2021

Well, that's a relief - we can get back to hating the French now that we've chummed up with the former colonies. And now that Macron has made such an international tit of himself.
Macron, looking all broody and Napoleonic: Respect le coq!
Here's an Evensong that mr ishmael prepared for you on the 21st August 2010, but didn't get round to posting. He loved the old, cracked voices of the Copper Family, the harmonies, the unaccompanied tradition of English working people singing the seasons, the wars, life and death. mr ishmael included the words as it can be difficult to make them out. Their sheer, naughty triumphalism over the French seems entirely apposite this week, as Biden, Johnson and Morrison declared the formation of AUKUS, the new defense and security partnership which will "protect and defend shared interests in the Indo-Pacific". The first initiative of the Alliance is the creation of nuclear-powered submarine technology for the Royal Navy of Australia, our former penal colony. In a delightful piece of collateral win-win, the Australian Government has abandoned the $66-billion agreement reached with the French for the construction of diesel-electric submarines. Macron was not dignified in defeat, withdrawing his ambassadors from Australia and the US and cancelling a party in Washington. China urged the new Allies to stop being so Cold-War-ish and to please stop picking on us.


Come all you warlike seamen that to the seas belong;
I'll tell you of a fight, my boys, on board the Nottingham.
It was of an Irish captain, his name was Somerville,
With courage bold he did control, he played his part so well.

'Twas on the eighth of June, my boys, when at Spithead we lay,
On board there came an order, our anchor for to weigh.
Bound for the coast of Ireland, our orders did run so:
For us to cruise and not confuse and face a daring foe.

We had not sailed many leagues at sea before a ship we spied.
She being some lofty Frenchman come a-bearing down so wide.
We hailed her off France, my boys, she asked from whence we came.
Our answer was, “From Liverpool, and London is our name.”

“Oh pray are you some man of war, oh pray, what may you be?”
Oh then replied our captain, “And that you soon shall see.
Come strike your English colours or else you shall bring to.
Since you're so stout, you shall give out, or else we will sink you.”

The first broadside we gave to them, it made them for to wonder.
Their mainmast and their rigging too a-rattling down like thunder.
We drove them from their quarters, they could no longer stay.
Our guns did roar, we made so sure we showed them British play.

So now we've took that ship, my boys, and God speed us fair wind
That we might sail to Plymouth town if the heavens prove so kind.
We'll drink a health unto our captain and all such warlike souls.
To him we'll drink, and never flinch, out of a flowing bowl.
The sea battle between HMS Nottingham and the French ship Mars in 1746. The Mars was returning to Europe after the failed 1746 Duc d'Anville Expedition attempting the recapture of the w.Fortress of Louisbourg.

Anyway, in other news, Scotland seems to be falling apart under the weight of Covid and the entire inability of the NHS and the Scottish Ambulance Service to cope with both Covid and the usual ills that beset mankind. For the week to 11th September 2021, the ONS Infection Survey estimates that 1 in 45 people in Scotland had corona virus. Paramedics have been deployed into vaccination centres; the ambulances that can be crewed are queuing outside A&E departments to offload their emergency patients and get back out to the next job, patients are waiting hours for assistance - in one case, 3 days. The Army has been called in to assist. 
So Gnasher has decided that the best thing to do in this crisis for her personal credibility and popularity is to announce a referendum in 2023. Fuelled entirely by emotion and not a whit by the financial reality, the legal and bureaucratic entwining of Scotland and England over 300 years, or the subsequent hardship that independence would deliver to the people of Scotland, Gnasher has done it again.
This is a country that worries about the negative or positive consequentials to the Barnett Formula of any tweaking in the National Insurance rate.
Negative and Positive Consequential armies battling.

So how about No Barnett Formula? No block grant? No Army to call on when you can't cope? The SNP has not  developed an economic strategy to support its case for independence. That's because it can't. But the promise of a jam referendum tomorrow will distract from the total absence of jam today, from the utter stupidity of walking away from discussions on two Scottish Freeports, from endless preoccupation with transgender rights, from the smoke and mirrors of the whole Fat Alec botched and malicious prosecution, from the Covid chaos created from a refusal to curtail the Tartan Army, from the financial catastrophe that is the SNP, and so on and so forth. 
COP26 is to be held in Glasgow from the 31st October to the 12th November. The website states: "Glasgow was chosen by the UK to host COP26 due to its experience, commitment to sustainability and world class is the perfect place to host a sustainable and inclusive COP."
Some sort of joke, surely? 30,000 people from over 200 countries, businesses, NGOs, faith groups and activists will converge on the city, the majority arriving by air transport, in a mass gathering to address the issue of human involvement in climate change.
Just have to hope none of them are struck down by a sudden Accident or Emergency during their stay. 
Cabinet Reshuffle Comment. 
Good to see young Gove getting a new job. He will protect us from the upstart Scots and frustrate their knavish tricks.
That little transgression in the summer vac. wasn't held against him by Headmaster Johnson:
Michael Gove, Conservative MP for Surrey Heath since May 2005
We have paid him very well to grace some fine governmental jobs, although he did have a little confusion over claiming his expenses - but then, didn't they all?

  • Secretary of State for Education 2010 to 2014
  • Chief Whip of the House of Commons 2014 to 2015
  • Secretary of State for Justice 2015 to 2016
  • Backbencher 2016 to 2017, a temporary career blip after Prime Minister Theresa May sacked him in a two minute meeting when she told him to "go and learn about loyalty on the back benches".
  • Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs 20to 2019 
  • Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster 2019 to 2021  
  • Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government 15th September 2021 to present, with special repsonsibility for Levelling Up and Minister for InterGovernmental Relations and telling the Scots Nats to fuck off.

Not bad for an Alien.  mr ishmael had his number back in 2010, when he got the schools job:



No, I know best; no, really, I do. About everything. Please, be quiet and listen to me. No, really. And as Mr Liam Byrne said,  there is no money left. And though he was only joking, we are basing our whole wretched, punitive ideology on his one throwaway remark;  that's how clever we are. And it shows how clever we think you are, doesn't it, every time we use it as an excuse for some wholly unnecessary cruelty.

We are having to close the schools building projects because we need the money to bribe people with the new free schools for fuckwit pushy parents, the ones who think they are clever but are just greedy and stupid and say clearly a lot. You know, the ones who were Blairite, a few years back, idiots. They won't actually be free, the schools,  the money will come from the poor people,  the ones with stupid children -  although, I must say, given the current, national appetite for brutality it seems that everybody's stupid. And we need to punish the teachers because some of them didn't vote for us. And that's what democracy's all about. Nasty, vindictive, little  cocksuckers. Like me.

Mr Michael Spit-Gove. In his bob-a-job days. He knows best.
Yes, the hospitals, let me finish, burn them down, no, blow them up, that's it, blow them up, no, let me finish, I am very clever, shut up and listen to me. Blow them up, y'see, it's actually the best thing to do with them. If you have hospitals people'll go in 'em, see, when they're ill, and that costs money, and that's money we could be spending on other things, private schools for instance,  for  your children, who are like many of my supporters' children, gifted, in the very real sense that they have me as their father, and another thing,  people expect not just to go in the hospitals but to get treated in 'em, y'see, and get better, and probably come home and want sickness benefit, which we must scrap. Because we 're all in this together. We can save the money the hospitals cost and give it to wealth creating  demolition companies, instead, or as well as, doesn't matter, just as long as we wreck things for ordinary people. Who don't know any better. And the best thing of all is we can blame it on thepartyopposite, who are every bit as bad as us but worse.  Health service, no, absolutely ring fenced, best Tory invention ever.

Now I don't suggest for a moment that we are gonna target the poor and defenceless but that's exactly what we're gonna do, after we talk to them about it, or, not really talk to them, just talk about talking to them about it - as if - and getting them to agree that  them losing their benefit is the best thing since sliced bread, not that they'll be getting much of that down at the very necessary soup kitchens which we are tasking the private sector with establishing.

It's tough times ahead all around and I for one am going to enjoy them hugely, that's what I came to Earth, sorry, into politics for.

What's that? My ears? No, of course I don't breathe through them. Well, not on this planet.

For more news on the terrible,savage and hurtful cuts:
Read the Times. Or the Sun. 
All human lies are there.

Why Don't You write a Book?
 My oldest and  dearest friend died suddenly. Okay for him, really, he'd had a few drinks, was well in himself, aboard a ferry with his family, bound for his beloved France; just went to bed happy and didn't wake up, one of Death's wee surprises, see? You can go swimming every morning, walking every night, be as fit as a fiddle and still, when you're not looking, when you think it's safe to go to sleep, Whoops, one quick yank, from the Dark One's chill,  bony hand and you're over on the other side, one of the tyrannical dead, the ones for whom things are done, because that's what they would have wanted, as though they weren't really dead, just watching us, from the other side of the crematorium,  their ashes crinkling in pleasure as the living, for once, are obedient.

Drives me mad, that 'swhat he would have wanted shit;  doesn't matter a fuck what he would have wanted, he is no more, he has no wants, there is no him, that's why he's dead,  that's why we're here, at his fucking funeral, because he is no more, you can play MyWay at a million watts, the bastard's not gonna hear it. Do fucking behave yourselves. The infantilisation even of  Death, the failure, the refusal to understand the simplest of Life's truths,  it bespeaks Ruin.
Years ago, I walked up to the site of an Iron-Age fort at Presteigne, in the Welsh Marches, with a friend and the ashes of her late husband. It's what he would have wanted, she said. Yeah, but whaddabout what you want, he's dead,  doesn't matter what he woulda wanted. You're right, he is dead, doesn't matter what he woulda wanted, it really doesn't, and it's alright to say that.  She cast the ashes up into the hilltop wind and they blew away, dazzling, in the Sun, she did it a few times,  and  they were  gone.  I don't know if it was the right thing to say, she seemed grateful for it, liberated from cliched helpless widowhood.  Don't get me wrong, I am quite Oriental about the ancestors and I keep my dead close, within, Oh, they come out in speech but there is no public performance of their ante-mortem wishes or requirements,  that's just stupid.

Shocked as I am by this news I also think,  Oh, to be so lucky. Not for him the hospital, its smells and pans and masks and blades  and the ghastly, hopeless optimism, the dreadful hospital radio and the  ghoulish chaplain, hovering,  seeking frightened  souls to rubber-stamp; the terrible, waxen  camaraderie of the near-dead, forged in feeble resistance to the doctorbastards and the cheerily impertinent nurses, embellished with catheter and bedpan, a fierce alliance, yet  routinely ruptured with the arrival of visitors, or not. It's shit, all that, dying in hospital. Best avoided. And hospices, how did that happen?  Respite and  palliative care,  this is a grim,  meddler's lexicon, some symbiosis of horror, incorporated,  dying-by-numbers. How did we cope, before hospicers selflessly invented themselves, built their death chambers ? Anyway, none of that for him, no saddle-seat on Death's Carousel, round and round, how are you, a bit better, good, you're looking better, they can do wonderful things these days, a bit tired, it's the medication I expect, they're doing some more tests, you have to try and eat something, keep your strength up.

But for we who survive, all of a sudden there are gaps which will never be filled,  just constantly regretted, at Christmas and at birthdays, which we must and shall live with, a voice we shall hear no more, save within, stilled and silenced, in the blink of an eye.

He managed a wood, in retirement, and he hoped to live to see great grandchildren.  I entertain no such hopes but had hoped to sit with him  in his wood, or mine,  maybe in my late sixties, old friends, sat on their park bench like book-ends, a sharp and cynical dotage, mine, antidote to his very genuine, Hail, fellow, well met bonhomie. He was much-loved, gracious and polite, warm, a toucher, a clasper, a hugger, almost living every day as though it might be his last, not wishing to leave any sour memories.

Why don't you write a book, he said to me, for forty years. There's enough books, don't need any more fucking books, books're the last thing we need more of. The last time he asked, a couple of years back, I wanted to say Well, in a sense, I have, it's called stanislav, a young Polish plumber, but I didn't.  I think stanislav, in toto,  was a tad profane  for him but some of the bits were written with him in mind, he was the young probation officer, hating the sinner but loving the sin,  or even about him, his was the motorhome which irked stanislav so much and I am sure that at some of the commentaries  he would have, as did so many, as did I,  spit his coffee out over the keyboard. But now I'll never know. It's probably what he would have wanted.


 mr ishmael's essays today are:

IT CAME FROM OUTER SPACE - published 9/6/2010 
I AM GOVE, SMELL MY BREATH - published 5/7/2010 
LEAVE OF ABSENCE - drafted 28/8/10 

Both anthologies of the work  of mr ishmael and Stanislav :  Honest Not Invent and Vent Stack - are available to purchase for mere money at Lulu or Amazon. It is cheaper to buy from Lulu. Register an account with Lulu to save a couple of quid, as going straight into the link provided below seems to make paypal think it's ok to charge in dollars, and apply their own conversion rate, which will put the price up slightly for a UK buyer. Once the new account is set up, follow our link; a pop-up box asks for age confirmation - simply set the date to (say) 1 January 1960, and proceed. (If you type the title, the anthology will not appear as a search result until the "show explicit content" box - found at the bottom left by scrolling down - has been checked.  You may also see the age verification box, as above, at this point.) 
 The full title is "Vent Stack love from stanislav" by ishmael smith, and the cover you'll see is red with white titles and a picture of Buster the Previous Blog Dog having a green thought in a green shade. 

Link for the paperback:


shorter link, which might make it easier if you wish to paste it into an email and tell a friend:

 Honest, Not Invent is available in paperback or hardback.
Link for Hard Back :

Link for Paper Back

At checkout, try PROWRITINGAID15, WELCOME15 or TREAT15 in the coupon box, which  takes 15% off the price before postage.  If this code has expired by the time you reach this point, try a google search for " voucher code" and see what comes up.  
With the 15% voucher, the book (including delivery to a UK address) should cost £10.89

Liz and Boris fly off to charm Biden.Best of luck with that one.




Mike said...

Slight, very slight, sympathy with the frogs being shafted by Les Rostbifs. The cancellation of the French subs project has been on the cards for quite a while - it keeps doubling in cost and has technical problems. We will never see these proposed nuclear subs. There is some different game at play. Why would we need nuclear subs to guard our sea-lanes against the Chinks when said Chinks are our largest trading partner by far? And we would be stuffed without our trade with China. And, thus far, they are happy to trade with us. Makes no sense.

Meanwhile in the Filth-o-graph it says that the UK is at last asserting itself as a world power. FFS.

Anonymous said...

You should try the Sunday Times, mr mike. Rod Liddle says we should flex our rediscovered muscle by bombing the Faroe Islands in solidarity with all those slaughtered dolphins. I sometimes think he might be an ishmaelite.


inmate said...

We need to keep up the pretence of the Bogeyman Mr Mike, ‘Oceania has always been at war with Eurasia/Eastasia’

mrs ishmael said...

You remember mr ishmael's solution to the world's problems? Nuke China. Overpopulation? Nuke China. Global warming? Nuke China. Bird flu? Nuke China. Bat flu? Nuke China. Rising sea levels? Nuke China.
With a heavy heart, of course, and perfectly understanding the desire of the Chinese population to eat meat every day instead of soup made out of bird's nests and to drive around in cars instead of bumping along in a rickshaw. He was, after all, the epitome of a civilised man. But he had come to the conclusion, after much late night, elbows on the window sill thinking, that the world could not afford China to become a post industrialised nation.
It would have to be done sneakily, of course. And suddenly. And efficiently. Get some Germans in to plan it.

mongoose said...

It sounds to me like an alternative submarine base on the other side of the world, mr mike, nearer to the 21st Century Pacific than to the 19th Century Western Approaches.

And if it annoys the French, it is probably the right thing to do. France has been irrelevant pretty much permanently since 1815.

Mike said...

It seems to be emerging that we will not be building subs, but leasing them from the US & UK, crewed by Yanks and Brits - likely 1 of each. As I said above, the plan was to ditch the problematic French deal without upsetting Adelaide and South Australia (where the proposed subs were to be built) in an election year (next year) with Morrison's popularity on the wane. A cunning plan, which Baldrick would have been proud of, but which amounts to bugger all. But is pissed off Europe and countries in SE Asia; we will see if China does anything.

mongoose said...

Speaking of cock-ups and conspiracies, mr mike, how do you read the EU's recent ditherings and disputes? They are being made to look over the fence and behave like grown-ups in the real world and seem not to like it very much.

In other news, the obsession with CO2 continues but the costs associated with tinkering in so futile a manner with its atmospheric concentration seem to be coming home to roost. Alas, just when Boris has gone all in on the gig.

Mike said...

Sadly, and I do mean sadly, Europe is going back into the Dark Ages - or at least a long period of decline. First: the Green energy thingy will kill the economy - which will lead to instability. Second: the immigration policies are destroying culture and society. The EU, or more EU, is the problem not the answer.

Doug Shoulders said...

Fear not. Our betters are all meeting in Glasgow to save the day.
Apparently it has been announced that the USA will not be using carbon in 4 years.
I’m assuming what is meant by that is the production of CO2 will end then.
But what of the plants? I hear you say.
I still find it quite strange that Google (Who are probably in on the grift) still show the CO2 content of air as 0.04%
The climate “Scientists” seem so assured that ordinary folks won’t join the dots. Unfortunately; that is probably the case.

mongoose said...

OTOH we could be underestimating the cunning of the Blond Bombshell.

By forcing the pace of it all, perhaps he has caused the actual costs involved to be considered as real things looming this winter rather than at some unspecified place down the line.

All the same, the Glasgow disaster-mongering is going to be very tedious indeed.

Anonymous said...

Have you seen the clips this morning, mr mongoose? He's quoting Kermit the Frog (and defending the honour of Miss Piggy.)

btw "Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson" scrabbles to "Jaffa bod freshener in open sex-doll", which sounds like an Old Etonian's Stephen Milligan joke.


mongoose said...

You excel yourself, mr v, you dirty blighter.

I thought the franglais was great fun and painted the pompous Macron like the gilded oaf that he is. How Boris gets away with his Bullingdon past is a mystery but it is in part because of this humourous slant he can give to things.

Anonymous said...

Much obliged, mr mongoose.

Short odds a memoir or biography down the road will tell us how someone bet Boris a bottle of Bolly he wouldn't cite both Kermit the Frog and Miss Piggy in a speech to the U.N.


Mike said...

I have to say, that if I was at school with Boris, I wouldn't have hesitated punching him. He's a show off; buffoon who thinks he's clever, but sadly for the UK, isn't.

Bungalow Bill said...

Brilliant that on death. Infantile, indeed we are; an infantilised, sentimental, feminised (if I may say so) wicked, global fuckwittery has destroyed us already.

Thank you for sharing and stay safe and may all of the rainbows in all of the NHS beam down upon you and upon all of the emergency heroes who shall make sure that only the very young and the very old shall ever die.