In the horrific irony section of this week’s column, a Texas advocate for unlimited access to firearms — ‘I need to protect my family!’ was her rallying cry — was killed by police after she shot her family. I kid you not. Second Amendment protectionists immediately said it was obvious she had mental health issues, but did not answer the question of why she was allowed to have guns if she had obvious mental health issues. I can’t even …
Let’s turn our attention to Brexit. The historic vote that the United Kingdom leave the European Union has left the “United” in United Kingdom very much in doubt.
The economic news is not good. The Financial Times reports that companies are relocating their headquarters, investment is on hold, deals are being pulled and pounds’s fall has squeezed household incomes just as they were recovering.
And the Times put forth an interesting theory. The Leave side, they posit, wasn’t prepared to win. They thought they were going to narrowly lose, leaving them in a great position of having fought the good fight, keeping their ego-driven leaders, Boris Johnson and Nigel Farage (poster boy for Punchable Face Magazine, according to comedian John Oliver) in a position of prominence.
But they won. And they don’t know what to do, the Times says. A lot of voters, experiencing a bit of buyer’s remorse, also said they had voted Leave more as a protest than an actual belief that it would happen. They didn’t think their vote would matter. A dangerous game of Democracy Roulette.
Both Johnson and Farage must have strained various muscles in their rush to walk back many of the promises they made to convince people to vote Leave.
The biggest lie, or “mistake” as Farage put it, was the promise that the $350 million pounds per week that England sent to the EU would instead be spent on the National Health system. Wow. That sounds good doesn’t it?
But when pressed after the vote, Farage said ‘no, I would never have made that claim’. Okay, you’d never make that claim, but you would paint it on the side of a bus. A bus! And because this is England it was a red, double-decker bus. And the side of the bus said, “We send the EU 350 million a week, let’s fund our NHS instead”.
You can see where people might have got the “mistaken” idea that there was a promise being made.
Another Brexit leader, Iain Duncan Smith said “our promises were a series of possibilities”. Wow. What cheek. Or seeing as we’re in the UK, what bollocks!
Perhaps the very unpreparedness of the Leave leaders to actually lead should be fair warning to our neighbours to the south that believing hyperbole, vague “us” versus “them” mutterings and no plan to speak of except making the country great again may not be the way to go.
The Donald himself was in Scotland during the vote promoting his golf course rather than trying to actually campaign for president when he was asked about Brexit.
“He said it was “great”. Well then, no need to worry. Of course The Donald then showed his great grasp of geo-politics by congratulating Scots for “taking their country back”. Except that the Scots voted overwhelmingly to stay in the EU.
This would be the point in the column where I turn to Twitter and reprint some of the prize winning Tweets about what Scots thought about Trump’s statement. Except I can’t. All I will say is that the Scots are some of the most inventive cursers I have ever come across.
I’ll give you a brief G-rated example. “We voted to stay, you ferret-wearing, cheetoh-faced, tangerine flesh-bag!”
Short, to the point, and a suitable note to end on.
See you next week.
Carolyn Grant is the Editor of the Kimberley Bulletin