Tuesday 30 April 2024

Off the grid in the mountains

World news, or at least the bits of the world in which we are interested, is, as usual, bleak. Here's a round-up:

  • Israel/Hamas cease fire - well it's a possibility and the negotiators are working on something that would release a handful of the hostages Gaza took in an unprovoked act of war in October last year, but the stumbling block is that Hamas wants a truce that would allow it to continue as a military force, whereas Israel wants to resume fighting and wipe out Hamas. So Israel wants a short cease-fire, while Hamas wants a longer one that could be dragged out into permanence, while continuing to manipulate the sympathies of the West.
  • Russian forces have captured a number of villages on Ukraine's eastern front last week. As many as 25,000 Russian soldiers are also trying to take Chasiv Yar, which lies on strategic high ground, about seven miles west of Bakhmut. Biden has signed off a package totalling $60 billion in military aid for Ukraine. No sign of a speedy resolution of that conflict.
  • In Darfur, a country the size of Spain in the north central bit of Africa, where 52% of the population are aged under 16, on account of genocide 20 years ago that killed 300,000; further trouble is brewing and renewed ethnic slaughter is anticipated.
  • In Scotland, Humza Yousaf resigned yesterday, in a speech which ended in suppressed sobs, probably because he realised he has no-one but himself to blame.
  • In Iraq, a hit man killed Um Fahad, a 30 year old mother who had previously been jailed for 90 days for posting a video of herself on Tik Tok dancing with her 6 year old son. It seems that she just wouldn't be told and would keep posting videos of herself, unveiled, wearing make-up. Her murder was the third killing of social media performers.
  • In Kenya, 45 people were killed after a dam collapsed due to heavy rain.
  • Ireland is drafting emergency legislation to deport illegal migrants to Britain, whence they have fled, fearing Sunak's Law to deport illegal migrants to RwandaForFuck'sSake.
  • In the United States of America, the students are revolting (but of course), in an anti-semitic movement, supporting Hamas. Columbia University has finally put its foot down and has announced that it has started suspending students who had failed to leave a pro-Palestinian encampment.
  • Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez has said, no, no, you cannot make me go, even though I did say last week I would resign because of corruption accusations against my wife.
  • In Germany, the first of three trials has commenced in a case involving defendants accused of plotting to overthrow the German government. In December 2022 heavily armed German police officers stormed houses, apartments, offices and a remote royal hunting lodge, making dozens of arrests, including a dentist, a clairvoyant, an amateur pilot and a man running a large social media group. The German authorities contend that their figurehead was Prince Heinrich XIII of Reuss, an obscure and conspiracy-minded aristocrat who would have been made chancellor if the coup had succeeded. The group was well organized and dangerous, some of its members were former officers trained by German elite military forces, one was a judge turned far-right lawmaker with Alternative for Germany, the surging populist party known as the AfD. The police said the group had stashed more than a half-million dollars in gold and cash; amassed hundreds of firearms, tens of thousands of rounds of ammunition and a cache of explosives; and secured satellite phones to communicate once it disabled national communications networks. Germans, eh? They don't change.
  • In France, Gérard Doopy-doo was ordered to stand trial on criminal charges that he sexually assaulted two women during a 2021 film shoot.
If all of this (and that's just last week) makes you want to get well away from other members of the human race, here's a video made by Martijn Doolaard, a chap who seems to be of a hermit frame of mind, living off grid, restoring an old stone hut high in the Piedmont mountains. Mr mongoose will like this, as it shows the chap laying a stone floor then cleaning it with acid to remove cement grout and reveal the sparkling colours of the stones. It's a long video, but, god, its soothing.

Sunday 28 April 2024

The Sunday Ishmael: 28/04/2024

No! I am not Prince Hamlet, nor was meant to be;
Am an attendant lord, one that will do
To swell a progress, start a scene or two,
Advise the prince; no doubt, an easy tool,
Deferential, glad to be of use,
Politic, cautious, and meticulous;
Full of high sentence, but a bit obtuse;
At times, indeed, almost ridiculous—
Almost, at times, the Fool.

Have you been following the Scottish news this week? It is quite chaotic, unbelievable, unprecedented - what larks, as mr mongoose would say. Here are the dramatis personae: 
Patrick Harvie, co-leader of the Scottish Green Party.
Lorna Slater,  co-leader of the Scottish Green Party.
Yes, that's right, one of each - but that was before the Greens fully embraced the diversity agenda in their constitution. These days, there would be several co-leaders, including a smattering of trans.
Handsome, debonair Martin Geissler, presenter of BBC's Sunday Show, fearless interviewer of Scottish politicians.
Alex Salmond, Leader of the Alba Party and former Leader of the SNP until Nicola Sturgeon, disgraced former leader of the SNP stuck her pickling fork into him. Not currently the subject of a police investigation into fraudulent use of SNP funds, unlike Sturgeon, whose hubby is under arrest as part of same investigation.
Humza Yousaf, the Fool, elected to replace the disgraced Sturgeon and carry the can for her, was unable to form a government, having secured only 63 of the 129 seats in the Scottish Parliament. So he did a deal with the Scottish Greens, thus letting the lunatics run the institution.
The deal was called the Bute House agreement, by which, in order to secure the 7 Green votes, Yousaf basically sold the family silver by agreeing a raft of anti-climate change policies with the potential to trash the economy.  Fortunately, the fishing industry was saved from the Ultra Marine Protection zones, Westminster stepped in to defeat the nonsense about gender declarations and the premature glass recycling debacle, and on Thursday, 18th April, the  
Net Zero Secretary, Mairi McAllan informed MSPs that the key climate change target of reducing emissions by 75% by 2030 was being abandoned by the SNP Government. It was always a preposterous and unattainable idea, one which couldn't happen as alternative fuel resources are too expensive, too scarce or too unpopular.  The Greens kicked off about the “worst environmental decision in the history” of devolution. And on Sunday, the 21st April, Martin Geissler, handsome, debonair etc, had fun rubbing salt into squirming little Patrick Harvie's wounds, indulging himself in quite a bit of Green baiting about the failed Green policies before moving onto the Cass Report, which, being what they like to call "progressive", the Greens had no qualms about dismissing out of hand. The Cass Report highlighted a lack of evidence for the efficacy of interventionist and hormonal treatments of children to delay puberty and imitate a change of gender and led to the closure of the Tavistock Gender Identity Dysphoria Clinic, although Scotland lagged behind relating to the Sandyford GID clinic in Glasgow. Questioned by Geissler, Harvie dove in there, saying the report had been politicised and weaponised against trans people. Ash Regan, formerly SNP, who defected to Alba after her bid for leadership of the SNP failed, subsequently lodged a motion of no confidence against Harvie, saying:
 "The motion of no confidence speaks for itself. The Scottish Greens wish to side with ideology over clinical evidence."
Then, on Thursday 25th, Yousaf ripped up the Bute House Agreement, ending power sharing with the Greens. 
This didn't go down well, especially with Lorna Slater, a nasty piece of work, who immediately started slagging off Yousaf and the SNP, called for the First Minister's resignation and launched a vote of no confidence in Yousaf.  Yousaf refused to resign and said he will fight the vote of no confidence - its a bit of a worry for him, though, as there are more of his opponents than his supporters.
Denouncing Yousaf’s actions as “a spectacular breach of trust”, Slater told Martin Geissler today: “We will vote in support of a vote of no confidence against Humza Yousaf and I cannot imagine anything at this point that would change that position.” What, Geissler quipped, even if he goes down on his knees? (bit near the knuckle, that, Martin.)
Ian Blackford, former SNP leader in the Commons, on the Kuenssberg political show, also this morning, apologised to the Greens for the way it had been handled, and said: “I want to appeal to our friends and colleagues in the Green Party to recognise where we are. We are colleagues together in arguing for independence. We pushed through legislation for which there has been mutual support," Kuenssberg should have replied that it was crap legislation that has either been overturned by Westminster or abandoned by Yousaf.
Great stuff, eh what? The cream of the jest occurred when Alex Salmond, interviewed under an umbrella in his Aberdeenshire garden, told Geissler that it was all his fault for goading Harvie last Sunday, and that he, Alex, now holds all the cards, because Yousaf's only chance of winning the vote of no confidence is if he does a deal with Ash Regan, Alba's only MSP, who will hold the deciding vote in the stand off between Independencers and Unionists.

What's on at the Theatre

Nye, National Theatre, South Bank, London. Tickets £20 - £99

Great trailer - you can see why I wanted to see it. What with me being a former Labour Party member, and all. And Nye being a bit of a hero. I didn't pop down to London, though - saw it as a streaming at the local cinema. Only cost me £13.00 and an evening of my life that I won't get back.

The pre- and interval comments by the National Theatre were all about how it was the 100th N.T. streaming, how 1000 NHS nurses were watching it in the theatre and many more in cinemas up and down the land, and how the whole focus of the production was on the creation of the NHS and Bevan’s death in an NHS hospital. The end was very emotionally manipulative. They were expecting tears. There were some good lines, Bevan’s poverty, deprivation, socialism and Welshness were well observed and rendered, Churchill’s mythic status was thoroughly debunked and the production emphasised the strength of the doctors’ union and how they damn nearly scuppered the NHS before their mouths were stuffed with gold and concessions in order to bring them on board. So the consultants could keep their god-like status and incomes. Bevan promised them he would make doctoring the most highly-paid profession – (and he did and that is what is bankrupting the NHS).
But the self-conscious theatricality of the production was dreadful. There was no stillness, no calm, no thoughtfulness, no subtlety. The politics were cartoonlike, people shouted their lines at each other and every one talked/shouted at once. There was a song and dance number in the first half, and a sort of circus scene, in which Bevan was lifted shoulder high by his fellow actors and carried around the stage. They didn’t ask us to bang saucepans and cheer for the NHS, which was a surprising omission, given the manipulation we were being subjected to. The set was an NHS ward, the props were curtains and beds, which gave extra service as the Commons’ green benches and the schoolroom of the sadistic Welsh schoolteacher who tortured Bevan because of his stammer. The casting was colour- and gender-blind, as usual, so Bevan’s sister, Arianwen, was played by Kezreena James.
This mightily puzzled a couple of my theatre companions, who thought this must be a first wife, because how could he have a black sister? They don’t understand modern wokery, or, as one husband kindly explained to his wife, political correctness. Not a term one hears too much these days. Winston Churchill was played by Tony Jayawardena, a big Asian bloke in a fat suit and a cigar.
Clem Attlee was played by Stephanie Jacob, 
a woman in a bald wig and three-piece suit, seated at a motorised desk that swooped about the stage.
Yes, as I write this, I realise that I really hated the production. You have to write stuff down to work out what you think. Sheen was very good, given the dreadful directorial decisions. The play was by Tim Price, who is a gingerish Welsh writer of frightfully right-on plays and TV shite. It was impossible to understand a lot of the dialogue because it was delivered at pace, at volume and with everyone shouting at once, so I couldn’t begin to evaluate the merit of the material. If it had been directed in a less shouty, spitty, running about, instantaneous-scene-changing way, it might have been interesting – but things have to be fast and noisy nowadays to keep the attention of the audience. 
I’m beginning to think that theatre is an infinitely lesser art form than film and that it really shouldn’t be subsidised.
There you go – I’ve watched it, so you don’t have to – and now you can speak knowledgeably about it at dinner parties – if you don’t mind being contrarian, because most people there seemed to think it was absolutely wonderful. I don’t think they actually thought that, and they were really watching the clock from 8.00 pm onwards, thinking dear god, how long will this go on for, but they believed it was the correct and acceptable response to a major theatrical event. My chum asked me if I liked Shakespeare and I said, yes. So she said Macbeth is coming soon. So I said, which Macbeth? And she said by Shakespeare, and I said, yes, I’d guessed that, but which theatre company, which director, which actors? And she said, the Royal Shakespeare Theatre, so I said, oh dear. Why so oh dear? she enquired. Because they do not respect the plays, the words, the plots, such as they are. They engage in colour blind casting, disabled casting, chronological mayhem and re-gender roles. They will probably have Lady Macbeth re-gendered and present the bloody and ambitious Macbeths as a same sex, probably black, or maybe Glasgae Asian, couple. But it's got Ralph Fiennes in it, she said. 
Hmm, I replied, playing Lady Macbeth, is he?
The four-volume Call Me Ishmael oeuvre, collected and curated by editor mr verge, is available on Lulu and Amazon.

Honest Not Invent, Vent Stack, Ishmael’s Blues, and the latest, Flush Test (with a nice picture of the late, much lamented, Mr Harris of Lanarkshire taking a piss on a totem pole) are available from Lulu and Amazon. If you buy from Amazon, it would be nice if you could give a review on their website.
Ishmaelites wishing to buy a copy from lulu should follow these steps :
please register an account first, at lulu.com. This is advisable because otherwise paypal seems to think it's ok to charge in dollars, and they then apply their own conversion rate, which might put the price up slightly for a UK buyer. Once the new account is set up, follow one of the links below (to either paperback or hardback) or type "Ishmael’s Blues" into the Lulu Bookstore search box. Click on the “show explicit content” tab, give the age verification box a date of birth such as 1 January 1960, and proceed.
Link for Hardcover : https://tinyurl.com/je7nddfr
Link for Paperback : https://tinyurl.com/3jurrzux

At checkout, try WELCOME15 in the coupon box, which (for the moment) takes 15% off the price before postage. If this code has expired by the time you reach this point, try a google search for "Lulu.com voucher code" and see what comes up.
With the 15% voucher, PB (including delivery to a UK address) should be £16.84; HB £27.04.
Here's Humza, making his First Ministerial way down the corridors of Holyrood. How much did the Holyrood building, the home of the Scottish Parliament, cost to build? £414 million. What was the original estimate? Between £10 and £40 million. Just saying.

Sunday 21 April 2024

The Sunday Ishmael: 21/04/2024

Pedicabo ego vos et irrumabo 

Are they putting something in the water? Or have blokes always been like this and I've just had a sheltered life?
This bloke is Mark Andrew Menzies, aged 52, Conservative M.P. for for Fylde in Lancashire since 2010. He was born and brought up in Ardrossan, Ayrshire, and bears the Proud Scottish name which Menzies Campbell, former MP for North East Fife, always pronounced as Ming (but then he was a Liberal Democrat) - as in 
Ming the merciless; or minging - meaning smelly or disgusting; or a shortened form of minge.
Anyway, Mark Ming, a bloke of advancing years, one whom Catullus might have described as: his pilosis qui duros nequeunt movere lumbos, has found himself in trouble again. I know, you couldn't make it up. 
His privy member led him astray back in 2014, when he resigned as Parliamentary Private Secretary to Alan Duncan, Minister for State for International Development. Presumably pursuing his international relations brief, it was alleged that he had paid a Brazilian male escort for sex and attempted to obtain the illegal drug mephedrone. Users have reported that, amongst other effects, mephedrone causes the grinding of teeth, improved mental function and mild sexual stimulation. Ming said a number of the allegations were "untrue".
Despite his disgrace, the voters of Fylde returned him as their Member at each of the three subsequent general elections.
And  despite the improved mental function enjoyed by alleged users of mephedrone, Mark Ming found himself the subject of a police investigation in 2017, in response to allegations that he had fed alcohol to a dog and had a fight with a 'friend'.  A spokesman for Thames Valley Police said: "Thames Valley police officers responded to a report of an incident in Langford, Oxfordshire, on 6 August 2015." The dog had emergency veterinary treatment for "intoxication" and "poisoning". Ming was not charged and strongly denied any wrongdoing. He said his friend had attacked him and stated that the police had dropped their investigation after he showed them pictures of his friend plying the dog with alcoholic drinks. The clear lesson to be learned here by a man of improved mental function was to be a bit more choosy when it came to friend selection.
But No! 
Earlier this month it  was reported that Ming is being investigated by the Conservative Party for the alleged misuse of campaign funds; he resigned the Conservative Party whip on 17 April 2024 whilst allegations were investigated. According to The Times, £14,000 given by donors for use on campaign activities was transferred to Ming's personal bank accounts and was used for private medical expenses. A further £6,500 was paid by his office manager to new friends whom Ming met on an online dating site. 
His new friends, whom he described as bad people, had locked him into a flat, he said, and needed paying to release him. Campaign funds were used to reimburse his 78 year old office manager, who he had phoned at 3.15 am to ask for money because he was in a 'life and death' situation and didn't have enough savings of his own to pay off his new chums.. In a statement to The Times, Menzies said: "I strongly dispute the allegations put to me. I have fully complied with all the rules for declarations."
These Conservatives, what are they like, eh? 
Back in 2017, Guido Fawkes reported that  Tory aides had compiled a list of 36 Conservative MPs, which included 20 ministers and 2 Cabinet ministers who had been accused of inappropriate sexual behaviour towards staff. The spreadsheet listed names alongside their specific misdemeanours, including one MP  said to have had “sexual relations with a researcher” and one serving minister who is “handsy with women at parties”. Included on the list was an accusation that Trade Minister Mark Garnier sent his then secretary to a sex shop to buy sex toys and  stories emerged of a Conservative MP being known in Westminster circles to take photos of young men in compromising positions and use them to demand sexual favours. Downing Street denied that Theresa May received regular updates from her party whips about her MPs’ sexual indiscretions, but Katie Perrior, the May's former head of communications, appeared on BBC One’s Breakfast, insisting details were “kept away from the prime minister” but “information is held by the whips, because they use it to make sure that MPs know that other people within the party know exactly what they’ve been up to, and that behaviour either is not acceptable, or it will be used against them – you will vote in a certain way or we will tell your wife exactly what you’ve been up to.”
But that was in the past, which is, as we know, a foreign country, where they do things differently. Surely all this sex-pestery and looking at pornographic pictures of tractors on your phone while sitting in the House of Commons conducting the business of the country has all been sorted out now?
But No!
There are 18 MPs who have had the whip withdrawn following allegations of misconduct. They are not all Tories, and it isn't all about sex. Here's the list:
  1. Willy Wragg, Conservative MP for Hazel Grove, state educated and graduated from the University of  Manchester, lost the whip after admitting to sharing personal numbers of his colleagues with an anonymous individual he met on the gay dating app Grindr. The politician said he was pressured by the individual to share the numbers after he previously sent intimate pictures of himself to the person, named “Charlie”.  Willy has resigned from his roles leading the Commons Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Committee and as vice-chairman of the 1922 Committee, and chose to surrender the Conservative whip in the wake of the scandal.
  2. Mark Menzies, Conservative MP for Fylde, privately educated and graduated from the University of Glasgow, lost the whip for allegations of embezzling party funds to fund his medical expenses and to pay off bad people he met on Grindr. After investigation, the Party said that it could not conclude that there had been a misuse of Party funds, but Menzies had shown a "pattern of behaviour that falls below the standards expected of MPs". Menzies says he will not be standing at the next election. Well, that's a relief. 
  3. Diane Abbott, Labour MP for Hackney North and Stoke Newington, Grammar School educated and graduated from Cambridge University, lost the whip last April after writing a letter to The Observer newspaper in which she suggested Jewish, Irish and Traveller people are not subject to racism “all their lives”. She is under investigation by the Labour Party.
  4. Crispin Blunt, Conservative MP for Reigate, educated at Sandhurst and graduated from University College, Durham, had the whip withdrawn following his arrest for rape and possession of controlled substances in October 2023. He remains on police bail. 
  5. Andrew Bridgen, Conservative MP for North West Leicestershire, state educated and graduated from the University of Nottingham, had the whip suspended in January 2023 after he tweeted comments comparing the Covid vaccine to the Holocaust. Tory chief whip Simon Hart said Mr Bridgen had “crossed a line, causing great offence in the process”.
  6. Nick Brown, Labour MP for Newcastle upon Tyne East, Grammar School educated and graduated from the University of Manchester, lost the whip in September 2022 pending the outcome of an internal investigation into a complaint against him. The nature of the complaint has not been made public.
  7. Jeremy Corbyn, Labour MP for Islington North, state educated and failed to graduate from a degree course in Trade Union Studies at North London Polytechnic having argued with his tutors,. had the whip removed and was suspended by the party in 2020 after responding to a highly critical report on antisemitism within the party by saying the scale of the problem had been “dramatically overstated for political reasons”.
  8. Geraint Davies, Labour MP for Swansea West, state educated and graduated from Jesus College, Oxford, whipless following allegations of sexual harassment made in June last year and boasting that he brought sex workers into Parliament for drinks.
  9. Sir Jeffrey Donaldson, D.U.P. MP for Lagan Valley, state educated and attended Castlereagh College, had the whip removed following his arrest by Northern Ireland's Police Service for allegations of sexual offences.
  10. Jonathan Edwards, Plaid Cymru MP for Carmarthen East and Dinefwr MP, state educated and graduated from the University of Wales, Aberystwith,  lost the whip after his arrest and police caution  for assaulting his wife. In August 2022, Plaid Cymru said it would readmit Edwards to its Westminster group, but he chose to remain an Independent after his wife denounced the decision, saying this would allow a “period of calm reflection”.
  11. Matt Hancock, Conservative MP for West Suffolk, privately educated and graduated from Oxford and also from Cambridge, lost the whip in November 2022, having flown to Australia to appear on I’m A Celebrity … Get Me Out Of Here! despite Parliament being in session. He has said he will not stand as an MP at the next election. He competed in the London Marathon (snorts derisively) today.
  12. Julian Knight, Conservative MP for Solihull, state educated and graduated from the University of Hull, had the whip suspended in December 2022 following allegations  of serious sexual assault reported to the Metropolitan Police. The investigation was subsequently referred to Essex Police, who closed the inquiry in February this year after deciding there was insufficient evidence to bring charges. Knight said he would take “a little time now to choose my next steps and recover my mental health” and adding that he would “under no circumstances” seek the return of the Conservative whip. Again, that's a relief.
  13. Angus MacNeil, SNP MP for Nah-Eileanan an Iar, (Western Isles), state educated and graduated from Strathclyde Uiversity, was suspended and lost the whip in August 2023 following a long-running dispute with its leadership when  he accused the SNP of a lack of urgency in pursuing independence.
  14. Conor McGinn, Labour MP for St Helens North, state educated and graduated from London Metropolitan University, lost the whip pending an internal party investigation into a complaint against him. The nature of the complaint has not been made public.
  15. Kate Osamor, Labour MP for Edmonton, state educated and attended the University of East London, lost the whip over comments she made in January 2024 in which she appeared to say in a post about Holocaust Memorial Day that the war in Gaza should be remembered as a genocide.
  16. Rob Roberts, Conservative MP for Delwyn, state educated, did not attend University, lost the whip in May 2021 after making repeated and unwanted advances towards a member of staff.
  17. Bob Stewart, Conservative MP for Beckenham, privately educated, Sandhurst, then graduated from the University College of Wales, Aberystwith,  lost the Conservative whip in November 2023 following his conviction for racially abusing an activist by telling him to “go back to Bahrain”. Stewart’s conviction was overturned on appeal in February, but he remains under investigation by Parliament’s standards watchdog and continues to sit as an Independent.
  18. Claudia Webbe, Labour MP for Leicester West, state educated and graduated from Lanchester Polytechnic, lost the whip in September 2020 when she was charged with harassment.  The harassment was directed at a woman who was having an affair with her partner, and allegedly included a threat to send 'naked' photographs of the victim to her children. The threats also allegedly included Webbe saying "You should be acid". She was subsequently convicted of the offence of harassment but not of making a threat of an acid attack a year later and given a suspended 10-week prison sentence and ordered to do 200 hours of community service.
So, to summarise:
  • Of the 647 elected MPs, 18 lost the whip.
  • The party distribution is: 8 Conservative, 7 Labour, 1 D.U.P., 1 Plaid Cymru, 1 SNP 
  • 7 allegations relating to sexual misconduct, up to and including police involvement
  • 5 allegations relating to various forms of racism
  • 2 convictions for violence
  • 2 undisclosed internal matters
  • 1 for absenting himself from work
  • 1 dispute about party policy
  • 15 males, 3 females
  • Of our group of 18 whip-less miscreants, 14 are graduates,  3 of them being from the prestigious Universities: 1 Cambridge, 1 Oxford and 1 Oxford and Cambridge.
You kind of expect better, don't you? You don't really expect those politicians elected to serve their country by regulating the economy, securing its defence, ensuring internal security and good order and providing and maintaining systems to treat the sick and financially support those unable to work, to be criminals, racists, sex beasts and pathetic pests - but there it is; again and again, week by week, politicians are revealed in their unlovely reality. Mr ishmael never had any illusions about them. Here's an extract from his essay: 

The Scum Also Rises: 
We face a future of unelected national governments, alliances of worthless, thieving, tyrannical fuckpigs - career politicians. There is so little faith in political parties, so scant a likelihood of majority acclamation that whichever concocted tribe of thieves, child molesters, drunks and traitors can feign a majority will barge into Downing Street, claiming, as do the current shit-eaters, that the country actually elected them, even though, resoundingly, we didn't. 
The obvious purpose of these new governments will be to further spread the almost global dominance of consumeriste totalitairianisme nouvelle, to promote, among those people who are neither corporeatistes or members of MediaMinster, a barren insatiability, to promote a sense of national values based on the acquisition of stuff;  we see it already, the fathomless grievance of the i-phone addict, the poor wretch, trapped in his pathetic, digitised life, who knows that the next model will do so much more than the current one, yet cannot afford his purchase;  the zombies who foregather in the TopGear studio, cheering and applauding cars which they will never even see close-up, much less own; the fashionistas, gasping for the latest atrocities, torture garments  excreted from the demented, drug enfeebled  minds of grotesque, women-hating fairies.  And then there's the latest, franchised Hollywood blockbuster, the latest computer game, the latest album from whoever-it-is;  there's the multiple branches of Cruelty TeeVee - your voice is shit, your house is shit, your cooking is shit, your general knowledge is shit, you are the shittiest link, fuck off and die; there's even, I believe, a show  about your body and your face being shit, Embarrassing Bodies, isn't it?
Filthy bastards in MediaMinster promote divisions, black and brown against white, healthy against sick, young against old. Never, though, do they imperil the Great Divide, that between Rich and Poor.
And in this obscene digitised reality of hatred and dissatisfaction people are both tantalised and cudgelled by the property behemoth;  look, you don't need proper wages, they are told - and they believe it - the price of your house is tripling every five minutes;  we have made you millionaires. 
Already, we are no longer citizens, with rights; instead, if we are not hard-working families, we fall into some enemy group within, some group which must be coralled, oppressed, our rights  re-assessed by some poisonous, embittered rodent.
But for the purposes of this essay it doesn't matter in the slightest which of the vermin wins the election, not in the slightest;  it wouldn't matter if there wasn't an election, things will be the same whoever sits on the government benches. Politicians smug, smirking, shameless bullies, unbedevilled by conscience,  the personification of patriotism being the scoundrel's last refuge; when  he wakes up, he's lying, when his lips move, he's  lying his arse off.
There was a time, in my lifetime, when political parties meant different things, were differently peopled.  Before my time, but Winston Churchill was the greatest, the most important leader in British history bar none - but he would have made a fucking awful post-war leader.  There'd be no health service, just for a start.  Without the '45 Labour government many of those who now damn the labour movement would have known only rickets, poverty and slums, God rot their fucking infantile, short-sighted, led-by-the-nose stupidity.
 Harold McMillan had seen and stepped in the slaughter of the Sommehe was a landowner and a wealthy publisher, but he seemed, nonetheless, a decent sort of Tory, rebuking Whisky Maggie and her spivs, Tebbit and Heseltine, Lawson and Clark, for selling-off the family silver, as he called their criminal privatisations.
Alec Douglas Home, Harold Wilson, Ted Heath, Tony Benn, even the customarily seedy Liberal,  Jeremy Thorpe, these were distinguishable, they and their parties, one from another.
No longer. All sit now, on the Great Latrine of State, shitting in our faces, regardless of putative party differences, the same villainous crew shits the same shit all over us.
And here we are,  governed by spivs and nobodies who, in each party, have felt able to ditch their manifestos and do exactly as they please. They trashed the shipyards,  they trashed the steel mills, the car industry, the motorbike industry while  tirelessly blaming the workers for the errors of shitty management, lack of imagination and stupidity.  I swear if I hear, just one more time, that Britain's industrial decline is all down to Red Robbo, I will scream.  And then they trashed the coal mines and their communities -  “let's face it, those fucking miners, they were the enemy within, as bad as the disabled people are now”. And they trashed the fishing industry.  And now they've trashed the corner shop and the High Street.
They're trashing the health service,  they're trashing the Greenbelt and those parts of education which they haven't yet trashed, they're getting round to;  gibbering, bug-eyed  little spit machine, Gove, playing BackToTheFifties to an audience of moribund redneck masturbators raging and drooling in the columns of the Filth-O-Graph.  Social care is underfunded whilst they pour trillions into the pockets of banksters; they are trashing the army yet spending more imaginary trillions on useless aircraft carriers and obscenely suicidal nukes.  The only thing we can be sure of is that all along this trail of destruction and ruin our masters, locally and nationally, will have had their fingers in the till, their lips clamped firmly around Money's cock.  No point anyone trying to dissuade me of this, tell me something different, it's not that I think these things or suspect these things.  I know these things. 
 MediaMinster, they really are good for fuck all.  Just add the seven and a half million flushed down the sluice to the millions burnt alive, shot-for-fun, tortured, chemicalised and collateralised  in the Middle East and South Asia,  shameless, murdering scumbags,  that's our legislature.
 I was certainly raised - insofar as I was raised at all - to detest and despise politicians. Thieves, liars, nonces and degenerates. We must, before it is too late, rid ourselves of these criminals and see that they are punished. LibLabConGreenJockTribesmen or Ukippers,  they are all the same.  We have done it before. No more coalitions, no more compromises,  no more criminal privatisations of our own property and  our own resources;  throw them out, the career politicians, all of them, and if they won't go, take to the streets and hang a few of them. Now, that's liberal talk.  

The four-volume Call Me Ishmael oeuvre, collected and curated by editor mr verge, is available on Lulu and Amazon.

Honest Not Invent, Vent Stack, Ishmael’s Blues, and the latest, Flush Test (with a nice picture of the late, much lamented, Mr Harris of Lanarkshire taking a piss on a totem pole) are available from Lulu and Amazon. If you buy from Amazon, it would be nice if you could give a review on their website.
Ishmaelites wishing to buy a copy from lulu should follow these steps :
please register an account first, at lulu.com. This is advisable because otherwise paypal seems to think it's ok to charge in dollars, and they then apply their own conversion rate, which might put the price up slightly for a UK buyer. Once the new account is set up, follow one of the links below (to either paperback or hardback) or type "Ishmael’s Blues" into the Lulu Bookstore search box. Click on the “show explicit content” tab, give the age verification box a date of birth such as 1 January 1960, and proceed.
Link for Hardcover : https://tinyurl.com/je7nddfr
Link for Paperback : https://tinyurl.com/3jurrzux

At checkout, try WELCOME15 in the coupon box, which (for the moment) takes 15% off the price before postage. If this code has expired by the time you reach this point, try a google search for "Lulu.com voucher code" and see what comes up.
With the 15% voucher, PB (including delivery to a UK address) should be £16.84; HB £27.04.

Friday 19 April 2024

Ha Ha, Ho Ho, Hee Hee

Peter Morrell, former Chief Executive of the Scottish National Party, was arrested yesterday in connection with embezzling Party funds, under the 3 year police investigation dubbed Operation Branchform.
Media are advised not to comment as this is now a matter of Court process. So, just a quick reminder, then - an Independence activist badgered the Police into investigating the disappearance of funds amounting to over £600,000 raised for another referendum on Scotland leaving the United Kingdom. Many goods were seized by the police in an unprecedented police raid on the home of the former Chief Executive of the SNP and his wife, the former first minister, Nicola Sturgeon, and a very expensive motor home was impounded by the police from the driveway of Peter Morrell's mum. Rather than commenting on the distressing circumstances now coming down on the SNP, here's an imagined conversation between two imaginary characters on the eve of the police raid. I ran it last April, and thought you might be amused by a second reading.


A Thistle Jig of Shit

Ah, a life on the open road, the wind blawin up ma kiltie, I deserve it, hen, after a' these years, toilin' fer the peeple, lang oors in stuffy rooms, handies blistered frae pullin on the levers o state.
An' you, get ye oot an awa' frae the ungrateful bastards an accoontants an journalists (spits).
They have nae appreeciashun for the fine edges an walkin' the line between tha' wee gabshitie wi the earing an tha' superstitious wifie frae the Islands - the cheek o her, wantin' to take ower frae you, step into your stilettoes,
squeeze her lustful, roonded, milk-filled juggies intae yer pretty little suities................
Ah, but the matchie tartan face maskie was such a grand fashion statement, showed aff yer bog-brush hair-cut.
Nay, lassie, it won't be a £40 grand piece o shit, just load o plywood an teak-effect plastic shoved inside big, noisy Citroen diesel van, bangin an fuckin clatterin to wake they Labour voters, engine sound like stanislav shakin set of spanners inside biscuit tin, with shit cassette under feet. I'll no' have to go and stumble round in dark, thistly wilderness while you tak a wee dumpie in van and vice versie. Look, top o' range camper van. Joined together in holy deadlock was fine when we was sitting pretty in Holyrood on top of all the money but is only for sick and health and rich or poor and not for content of bowels, we're no' Liberal Democrats.
Awa' an' bile yer heed, yer dam' stupid ex-Chief Exec, I'll nae go near yer mobile toilet. How would it look in car crash, shit flying all ower the shop an' bog roll, only not proper bog roll but that stuff, thin and cold, IZAL, good for fuck all, not even for wiping of arsehole; every bastard with mobile home has IZAL toilet paper. Is bad enough take dump in van like fucking Englishman but then can’t even wipe Former First Ministerial pass clean but instead smear shit all over bottom, or finger go through and get all filthied-up with spread-out bit of shit, better would be with handful of grass from roadside and never mind IZAL trick bogroll. Manufacturer of IZAL is rolling about on floor, laughing off bollocks at mobile home driver and boy scoot.

But, ma sweet former First Minister, we can pull in by a lochside and you can make me a cup of smug tea and nae milk because I am watching my cholesterol and I drink Fairtrade tea because I like to think that everytime I have a cuppa some money is going to those huge traditionally-built women in Botswanaland, even though it isn’t.

Ye can mak yer ain tea, if smirking gay crewcut Polis Scotland lets ye oot o jail lang enough. I'm nae tea-wifie. Fred West had a fucking camper van an' look at him, spent his spare time choppin' people up, squeeze into box and bury under patio, like on Brookside. Fred was made mad having to cope with life inside rubbish camper van, driving round Forest of fucking Dean, banging fucking head and choking on shit fumes and pots and pans falling out from cupboard every bend, no fucking wonder was serial killer. Was very nice bloke by all accounts, apart from being raving lunatic and him and Rose killing people, mainly children.

But, ma shouty wee dwarfie, it might become politically expedient to hae an exit strategy an' become better acquainted with the beauties of the Heelands and Islands of oor magnificent nation.

Are ye serious, ye bald fat wee git? We havenae dualled the A9 yet.

Ma dear wee gurrul, jes' as high as ma heart, the £110 grand camper van we'll be tourin' in has a bicycle compartment to hold a bicycle for me an' one fer ye. We can park by a loch and cycle through our Heather and Gorse lands, wi' nae worries aboot goin' to work....... nae need to rush the gorse.....

Ye want to join they band o' nutters who jump on a bicycle and pedal like demented hobgoblin speedfreaks up the highest roads in the country shouting Gimme A Fucking Heart Attack, I Can’t Stand Being A Teacher For Another Twenty Years! Driving in Highlands is rubbish anytime (we needed the upgrade money for trams in Edinburgh where the voters are) but filled-up in Summer with Herman lesbian Hells Angel and demented lunatic nutters on bikes and smug bastards in camper vans is like something off Prisoner programme with Patrick McGoohan, dead now, of course, but was nearly a hundred and so never mind. An ye better get used to it - that Prisoner programme.

How can I put this, my wee Pigmy of stature but possessor of Giant propensities, we may need to get out of Dodge fast. In this case, Glasgae. A lonely mountainside, in pitch black, the twa o us an a wee pup, a Greyfriars Bobby, is looking like the better option.

Ye're going frae bad tae fucking worse, ye Fat SilverFox Retired Loony. Is not just poxy shit van clogging-up Afucking9 and can’t even stop in layby because of too many smug old bastards like you sitting at table outside van, drinking FairfuckingTrade cuppa, not too strong and made with pissmilk and handful of sweetener for heart and horrid old legs all fucked-up with varicose veins and every bastard can see because of shorts or kilties, even though brass bollocks would freeze-off from monkey, up there in Highlands. No fucker wants to see countryside all fucked up with horror show of pasty old bastards sunbathing in fucking public and probably piles hae got, too, all aroond arsie, and maybe hanging-out, from sitting outside in kilties with fucking gale blowing up arsie from Arctic fucking Circle and mean tight-fisting use of Izal joke bogroll (but isn’t roll but leaves of piss-thin hard shiny so-call toiletpaper) and good for fuck all is and not only hand goes through and gets covered-up in shit but fucking watertap in van is nae working and nae matter if ye stand with aarsie cheeks as far apart as possible which is not very far, as we are nae Liberal Democrats, and keeping shitfinger hand up in air and trying hard not to do breathing-in and stomping on little foot switch to make water come and at least can wash fucking shit off from hand but instead of water coming from tap fucking hazard light is coming on instead. And radio. Is Radio Scotland an' is just dreadful noise of bagpipe, fuck me, sounds like massacre in cat sanctuary, run by mad old lady who is dead in living room from hypothermia from Westminster Fuck-Up Economy, spent all money on Kit-E-Kat and cruel, wicked bastard at Scottish fucking Gas has cut off power and local nutter with chainsaw bought from car boot sale has seized golden opportunity an' old lady’s assorted cats disembowlered is being, one at a time, by giggling nutter, Here, Kitty-Kitty, Here Kitty- Kitty so even cats not actually being mutilated to death is all freaked out and screeching and climbing up curtains, Radio Scotland bagpipe concert is worse than massive cat massacre.

Time is running out, ma wee Princess of the Steamie, Drastic action needs tae be ta'en an' I'm the man to rise to a Crisis, trust me. There's some lovely little villages in the hills around Inverness.......

What? Go down Clackmacfuckery Village Hall tae the tea-dance, tae listen to some fat old fucker playing a wheezy old accordion, made oot o' shiny tin and plastic and sackin' and hunnerds o' fucking keys and buttons so many that playing it must be hit and fucking miss like an Oompah band from the Black Forest, but backwards. And watch decrepit old boys in wigs and false teeth and kilties seducing old wifies and feeling-up bony old aarsies before the bus comes tae tak them back to the Hame. The one wi' the Polish nurses. And would ye be doin’ me the honour of having the next Polka with me, Jings, but you’re a right bonny lass, indeed y’are, he leers, at a spindle-thin, one foot in the grave, ninety year old, the dirty filthy old bastard. Then it'll be back to the van frae Hell, hazard light flashing off and on, nightmare noise from radio, and can’t wash hand or wipe aarsie and would be better off dead, or at very least wanting to get back in fucking Polis Scotland's cells where there's a flushing toilet (the polis watch you tak a crap in your cell in the toilet with nae seat and then hit the flush switch from ootside the door); so ye'll hae to go outside wi yer kiltie tucked around yer waist and grab handfuls of grass and wipe aarsie and fingers like the fucking savage ye are and fucking van cost £110 fucking grand and every bastard knows that grass up aarsie is the primary cause of piles, especially when is not even fucking grass but fucking thistle. And people going past in proper car all shouting and hooting, Look at silly old Ex Chief Exec sticking thistle up aarsie, must be demented, maybe attempting suicide by anal lacerations off thistle, is fucking really mad, fuck me, don’t wanna get that dementia rubbish and run around like loony, with kiltie up roond waist and thistle and nettles up aarsie and shit on fingers.
Best thing in situation like this is stick shitty fingers in ground and keep on stabbing until hand is covered in just dirt and not shit and can touch clothing, then remove kiltie and wipe off  aarsie and when no-one is passin' in proper car, throwaway in hedge, only not where dog, Bobby, can go and pull out and start to eat and maybe get sporran stuck over head and normal bastard, going past in proper car, is on mobile phone to cop and RSPCA, Allo? Allo? ….Is polis? Right… SeeYouJimmy?..... Is fucking pervert here, on A9, and dog has got head in sporran and poo…. Nah, is not skidmark,……is proper poo…dunno…..might be dogpoo…but might be yuman poo…bloke looks like fucking nutter an' thistle has sticking out from aarsie…I know….all sorts takes,….but fuck me, Jesus….an' shit has got all over hand….no….is not car…is van….with awning and elevating roof….is some foreign shit…..is Niesmann + Bischoff, Yeah, is plumbervan, all filled up with plywood furniture and things that don’t work. Better come and arrest him, aye, before he starts sticking yon fucking thistles up the puir wee dog’s ….Aye, Edinburgh by the look o' him.

So, former First Minister wifie, will ye nae come and hae a wee lookie at it? I've parked it round ne maw's, discrete-like?
That'll be a no, then? You'd rather go on our usual S and M holiday, dress-up in leather and rubber and plastic and smack my aarsie wi thistles?

Now, that's beginning to persuade me - nae danger of falling-off bicycle, probably even have proper toilet in S and M hotel and nae shit cassette, sliding about, under driving seat; is much easier than this shit and not cost £110 grand and then £3 grand for bikes to tie on back. No, bike on back of grossed-out plumbervan with inoperating integral sanitation and plywood furniture and trick toilet paper, is all bollocks.
Too late, now, anyway, hen.

Sunday 14 April 2024

The Sunday Ishmael: 14/04/2024

 Scratch a pacifist and a militarist peers out. My first emotion on hearing that Israel's Iron Dome had held firm and that Britain's Air Force had a significant part in the destruction of 99% of  the air borne weaponry launched by Iran against Israel last night, was one of pride.  Around 170 drones, more than 30 cruise missiles and more than 120 ballistic missiles were launched at Israel by Iran overnight. And an amazing coalition of Israel, France, Britain, Jordan and the United States immediately formed to defeat them. Yeay, us! Boo, them. Avi Hyman, the Jerusalem spokesman, was quick to thank the allies for defeating the Iranian attack - but the British politicians interviewed this morning,  including Health Secretary Victoria Atkins, Shadow Home Secretary, Yvette Cooper and, godblesshispointedlittlehead, Ian and Duncan Smith, equivocated like mad, reluctant even to admit the presence of RAF planes and their regular flights in the vicinity. Their problem is that they are in thrall to the Muslim vote. This is why they describe the Middle Eastern situation as delicate and why they attempt to pretend that Britain is neutral in the Israel/Palestine situation, why the pro-Palestinian/anti-Semitic weekly demonstrations on the streets of London are tolerated, despite the noisy and overt  incitement to violence and to ethnic hatred. And this is the chicken-roosting consequence of a migration policy which encouraged pluralism rather than integration. The United States early grasped the nettle of indoctrination - knowing that it had to form a national identity following the Civil War and that catching them young was the way to go - the Pledge of Allegiance was written in 1885 
by Captain George Thatcher Balch, a Union Army officer in the Civil War, who later wrote a book on how to teach patriotism to children in public schools (by which Americans mean state schools), and ever after American kids recite the Pledge of Allegiance, their pudgy little hands spread over their hearts, solemnly declaring:
children of Japanese ancestry together with white schoolfellows pledging allegiance to the American flag in 1942.

“I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.” 

This doesn't happen in British schools. There is no British equivalent of the Pledge of Allegiance and you'd be hard put to it to find a Union Jack in British schools, especially in Scoatland.. . I suppose this is because, as a nation, we are terribly embarrassed and ashamed about Empire, the Union is always on the brink of falling apart, we think patriotism is a dirty little emotion, and we are hollowed out by liberalism, a liberalism that has allowed the proliferation of practices that are culturally inappropriate to Britain, activism that asserts lies as truth and intimidates truth speakers. Our commitment to religious toleration has allowed the proliferation of faith schools, where unBritish beliefs and attitudes are taught, and we find ourselves in the position of Henry VIII and his fiery-headed daughter, Elizabeth I.
It has only recently occurred (slow learner) to me that all that torture and execution of Catholics had very little to do with religious difference - after all, it was the same bloody religion, Christianity, with the same set of beliefs. No, it was because Henry and Elizabeth needed to eradicate a set of powerful people who owed their allegiance to the ruler of a foreign country, one of the oldest continuously functioning states of Europe, the Papal States, a territory that stretched from Rome and its environs north-eastward to the Adriatic Sea, was immensely wealthy and represented an existential threat to the newly autonomous England, which had thrown off Papal rule, not because of a religious problem per se, but because the Pope would not acquiesce with Henry's dynastic need to have a legitimate son. And Elizabeth continued with the policy because she needed to maintain that she was Henry's legitimate heir by his second wife and not the bastard daughter of his mistress, conceived and born during the lifetime of his first wife.
The analogy, of course, is that Britain's Muslim population owes more allegiance to events unfolding in the Middle East than they do to the West. The percentage of Muslims in England and Wales is tiny: the 2021 Census recorded an Islamic population of 6.5%, whereas the same Census recorded 46.2% of the population as Christian. But the uneven distribution of Muslims across the nation, being concentrated in the large cities, can give a very different impression - and politicians of all colours  court the Muslim vote to retain their seats in these city constituencies.
So there'll be no Yeay, us and Boo, them as our politicians obscure the extent to which Britain supports Israel in its existential war against its Islamic neighbours who are striving to eradicate the state of Israel. 
In February, Reuters reported that Iran provided Russia with  400 missiles including many from the Fateh-110 family of short-range ballistic weapons, such as the Zolfaghar. This road-mobile missile is capable of striking targets at a distance of between 300 and 700 km (186 and 435 miles). Well, what of it, an Iranian official said, you want to make something of it? "There will be more shipments," a second Iranian official said. "There is no reason to hide it. We are allowed to export weapons to any country that we wish to."
They certainly tried to export 300 to Israel on Saturday night and Sunday morning.
You remember Ian and Duncan Smith? Universally derided for his campaign slogan: the quiet man is turning up the volume, a doomed Leader of the Conservative Party, who never got to be Prime Minister, maybe because of his habit of picking his nose and eating it in the House of Commons.
The unlovely face of Conservatism.

He allowed himself to chortle and smirk this morning on the Laura Kuenssberg show, at the expense of Angela Rayner. Another OhDoFuckOff moment.
For our overseas readers, and those who do not take much of an interest in politics - that would be you, Ruby Wax, self-identified pea-brain, who finds British Politics just too, too confusing because of her Mental Health ishoos, who has written several books about those ishoos - sorry, digressed. Back on track - Angela Rayner is the Deputy Leader of the Labour Party. She's vulgar. And funny. Describes herself as John Prescott in a skirt. John Prescott being the vulgar Deputy Prime Minister in Tony Blair's government, who performed the useful function of keeping the working man identifying with Blair's brand of Labour - against all reason. Famous for punching a member of the public who threw an egg at him.
Well, Angela Rayner is not handy with her fists, that I know of, nor does she have a clitoral piercing, that I know of,
but she did spread the rumour that she had a policy of flashing Prime Minister Boris Johnson by crossing and uncrossing her legs whilst he was at the dispatch box in order to distract him by glimpses of what she described as her ginger growler.
She's not had an easy life, Angela. She left her Stockport Comprehensive School at the age of 16, having fallen pregnant, raised her child as a single parent, worked for the local council as a care worker and joined the trade union Unison, where she flourished, becoming a trade union representative. She joined the Labour Party, where, again, she flourished, elected to the seat for Ashton-under-Lyne in the 2015 general election. She was appointed Shadow Deputy Prime Minister in a 2023 re-shuffle, and looks set to be Deputy Prime Minister when Labour win the 2024 General Election - which the polls tell us is the likely outcome. She is immensely popular and has been quick to call out Tory corruption. All this enrages Conservatives, including, by his undignified crowing today,  Ian Duncan Smith.
The Mail on Sunday, a deeply Conservative newspaper of sorts, had a go at Angela Rayner in April 2022  when it ran the leg distraction story. The article was widely condemned, with Boris  Johnson describing it as "sexist tripe". Mr Northern Speaker, Sir Lindsay Hoyle called the story "misogynistic and offensive" and requested a meeting with the Mail on Sunday's editor, David Dillon. In response to the invitation, the Daily Mail published a front page headline which read: "No Mister Speaker: In the name of a free press, The Mail respectfully declines the Commons Speaker's summons...".
The Independent Press Standards Organisation received 5,500 complaints about the article. It reported and investigated possible breaches of clauses 1 (accuracy), 3 (harassment) and 12 (discrimination) of the Editors' Code of Practice. Possibly still smarting after Rayner revealed that she herself had started the story as a joke, The Mail on Sunday has had another go at Rayner. Last month it serialised a book by former Conservative Party deputy chairman Lord Ashcroft, in which it was claimed that Rayner was guilty of tax fraud, in the sale of her former council house - namely that she did not declare a Capital Gains liability. The sum involved is in the region of £3000.  This was 10 years ago. To be clear, you do not have to pay capital gains tax if the house you have sold is your home, in which you are living. Capital Gains only arises in the sale of a second home. The suggestion was that Rayner was living in her  husband's home, from whom she is divorced. Rayner refused to publish her tax records or tax advice, and stated that she had done nothing wrong. Greater Manchester Police initially refused to investigate the allegations but later said they would review their decision not to investigate, after James Daly, Conservative MP for Bury North asked them to do so.
Chortling Ian and Duncan Smith, said "ho ho, do as you would be done by". 
If you draw the conclusion that this is unpleasant Conservative spite, and revenge for the many times that Rayner has called out Tory financial shenanigans, then I would have to agree with you. 
I would suggest a quick rubdown with a housebrick might be helpful, but I suspect this whole witch hunt will become a shit explosion as, yet again, Tories and the Tory press have revealed themselves in their true blue colours.
Talking of Tories, remember Willy Wagg, featured last week, with his magnificent privy member?
What is now being referred to as the Westminster honey trap, seems to be becoming curiouser and curiouser, as  more  and more MPs, SPADS, and journalists reveal that they have been contacted by Abbi or Charlie, or possibly Abbi and Charlie. There's a suggestion that this is not being perpetrated by China, but is another example of British investigative journalism/scamming. It does seem to have put paid to Oor Wullie's parliamentary career, though.

The four-volume Call Me Ishmael oeuvre, collected and curated by editor mr verge, is available on Lulu and Amazon.

Honest Not Invent, Vent Stack, Ishmael’s Blues, and the latest, Flush Test (with a nice picture of the late, much lamented, Mr Harris of Lanarkshire taking a piss on a totem pole) are available from Lulu and Amazon. If you buy from Amazon, it would be nice if you could give a review on their website.
Ishmaelites wishing to buy a copy from lulu should follow these steps :
please register an account first, at lulu.com. This is advisable because otherwise paypal seems to think it's ok to charge in dollars, and they then apply their own conversion rate, which might put the price up slightly for a UK buyer. Once the new account is set up, follow one of the links below (to either paperback or hardback) or type "Ishmael’s Blues" into the Lulu Bookstore search box. Click on the “show explicit content” tab, give the age verification box a date of birth such as 1 January 1960, and proceed.
Link for Hardcover : https://tinyurl.com/je7nddfr
Link for Paperback : https://tinyurl.com/3jurrzux

At checkout, try WELCOME15 in the coupon box, which (for the moment) takes 15% off the price before postage. If this code has expired by the time you reach this point, try a google search for "Lulu.com voucher code" and see what comes up.
With the 15% voucher, PB (including delivery to a UK address) should be £16.84; HB £27.04.