may scrooge brexmas carol
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Stooge – A Brexmas Carol

Something a little different for you this festive season, dear hearts! My dear friend Mr. Dickens sent this first draft of a story he is about to publish. I know he wouldn’t mind if I shared it with you. There’s a moral in it somewhere, if only I could find it…

 

Stooge: A Christmas Fireside Pantomime

The Scene: A sparsely furnished bedroom in Downing Street, bare floorboards and a four poster bed with tattered hangings. A pale, drawn figure in leather trousers and kitten shoes sits in an armchair by the glowing embers of a dying fire, a sheaf of papers on her lap.

Ebertreazer Stooge: Bah, Humbug! Reducing the surplus British population and importing new stock from darker continents knocks the stuffing out of one! But I can’t go to bed yet, there are still demands to be met and Eurocrats to appease! There must be something else I can give away to my masters in Brussels, something the public wouldn’t notice…our fishing grounds perhaps… the Countess of Wessex… Shropshire maybe?

A strange howling and groaning fills the air.

Ebertreazer Stooge: Sod off you Brexiteers… you’ll get no joy from me!

Suddenly there is a rattling of chains and a ghostly figure appears.

Ebertreazer Stooge: Jacob? No. it cannot be! And yet you are familiar… there’s a whiff of the eighteenth century in your demeanour.

Jacob Rees-Marley: Indeed it is, Stooge! I have come from the other side of the party to warn you – there is little time left to save yourself. You must turn away from the evils of Berlaymont and become a champion of Brexit, or the people will turn on you! The knives are out! Beware!

Ebertreazer Stooge: Humbug! They haven’t got the guts! With me they have secure and stable government.

Jacob Rees-Marley: You may think so, others would disagree. Before this night is out Stooge, you will be visited by three spirits. Heed their warnings!

With a last rattle of chains, the spectre vanishes. Stooge gets up and hides beneath the duvet, drawing the bed curtains tight. Big Ben strikes midnight…the room is suddenly illuminated with an eerie light and swirling mist.

Spirit of Christmas Past: Wake up, Ebertreazer Stooge.

Ebertreazer Stooge: I recognise that voice, those heaving shoulders, those teeth… but it cannot be… is it really you..?

Spirit of Christmas Past: Yes indeed, Edward Heath, at your convenience (and thereby hangs a tail). When I was alive I too served Brussels more than my own people. Like you I told the public any old rubbish to achieve my wicked ends – and for my sins I am condemned to float on morning clouds for all eternity, unless I can save one poor soul from making the same mistakes. That is why I am here, Ebertreazer.

Ebertreazer Stooge: Push off Ted – nobody wants to listen to you!

And with a puff he was gone. Stooge goes back to bed. The night draws on until the clock strikes thirteen… A spectral hand draws back the curtains and a familiar face beams down.

Spirit of Christmas Present: Well you’ve cocked things up and no mistake! Brexit means Brexit my arse! They’ve cottoned on to you, Ebertreazor Stooge. You should have let me do the negotiating in Brussels, I’d have given Johnny Foreigner what for!

Ebertreazer Stooge: Nigel Farage! Since when did you join the spirit world?

Spirit of Christmas Present: Since my last visit to the pub… and as for this honours malarkey… you give bloody Clegg a knighthood for betraying his country and ignore me yet again! I am here to show you what happens when you ignore the grass roots. Take my hand…

No sooner does Stooge reach out and take the spirit’s hand than they are transported to a dismal garret room which once was the home of the Liberal Party. A sobbing figure sits on a three-legged stool in the corner, his crutch propped up against the wall – a political contortion not to be recommended.

Ebertreazer Stooge: Why have you brought me here, Spirit? Tell me, who is that wretch in the shadows, and why does he cry?

Spirit of Christmas Present: You do not recognise him? Why, it is Tiny Tim Farron, once leader of the Liberal Democrats… he thought he had the finger on the pulse of the nation, but as usual his digit was stuck up somewhere else. His mistake was to oft repeat those words abhorrent to the atheistic Guardianista Collective… ‘God Bless us, every one!’ which rather cooked his goose. Now his party is broken and insignificant… such may be your fate!

Ebertreazer Stooge: Hah! You’ve some need to talk! I don’t see UKIP doing that well these days!

This was one rebuff too many and the Spirit instantly vanished, leaving Stooge feeling smug. The clock struck fifteen… and the last of the three apparitions, burkha-clad in deepest black, floated in through the wall. It stood in the middle of the room pointing a bony finger at the terrified Stooge.

Ebertreazer Stooge: Are you the Spirit of Christmas that is to come? Tell me, Spirit, what will become of me?

The Spirit nodded but did not speak – instead, the bedroom dissolved in an instant and Stooge found herself in a graveyard with snow swirling around her. The Spirit pointed towards a large stone. It was the Miliband Stone, carved with Labour promises from the last but one election… but there was a new inscription at the foot.

Ebertreazer Stooge: It says, ‘Labour Victory 2020’… No, no… it cannot be! Tell me Spirit, this is not our future, is it?
The spectre tore off the black shroud to reveal a thin, wiry man with bristly beard, dysentery shorts, bicycle clips, and a Chairman Mao cap perched jauntily upon his head.

Jeremy Corbyn (for it is he): Our fireside pantomime draws to an end,
So Christmas greetings now I send.
Though not in a religious sense
For that would simply cause offence
To Guardian readers old and young
And those who speak a foreign tongue.
To those who sadly have no winkle,
Transgendered dust on them I sprinkle.
For all are welcome in Labour’s tent
Especially those not straight, but bent.
I can handle any crisis,
I’ll always be a friend to ISIS
And any thug that comes our way
Especially the IRA.
Before you twig that I am barmy,
I will, of course, disband the army…
Wake up, dear Comrades, do not yawn,
For I bring in the blood Red Dawn.
For Stooge, a lesson has been learnt,
Betray the public, you’ll get burnt.

Finis

  • Brian

    Bravo! Some say they prefer the Muppets’ version but we have real Muppets here.

  • David

    Utterly brilliant Mrs Proudie, you’ve captured the mood and the tensions so well !
    Theresa beware, you’ve been rumbled !

    • Mrs Proudie of Barchester

      ah David, bless you…you never fail to give me encouragement to keep scribbling!

  • dannybhoy

    Mrs Proudie you have surpassed yourself!
    “No sooner does Stooge reach out and take the spirit’s hand than they are transported to a dismal garret room which once was the home of the Liberal Party. A sobbing figure sits on a three-legged stool in the corner, his crutch propped up against the wall – a political contortion not to be recommended.

    Ebertreazer Stooge: Why have you brought me here, Spirit? Tell me, who is that wretch in the shadows, and why does he cry?”
    Tim Farron is perfect for the part of Tiny Tim and Jacob RM…
    “Ebertreazer Stooge: Jacob? No. it cannot be! And yet you are familiar… there’s a whiff of the eighteenth century in your demeanour…”
    “To those who sadly have no winkle,
    Transgendered dust on them I sprinkle.”
    Excellent stuff.

    Your bit about Nigel Farage is somewhat poignant, for if anyone was deserving of a knighthood it is Nigel Farage. Almost single handedly he provided the inspiration and leadership that brought us to David Cameron’s referendum on whether or not to remain or leave the EU.
    (And we can be quite sure that our “Sold out -I’m shafting Britain!”, political leaders would never willingly have given us a Referendum).
    I sincerely hope someone will ;launch a petition to get this man the official honour he deserves..
    (But Danny thinks the whole Honours system stinks, belongs in the realms of Toy Town, and should be overhauled forthwith..)

    • Mrs Proudie of Barchester

      Most kind, most kind…I must agree about poor Mr. Farage being overlooked yet again, whilst poltroons and blackguards are elevated…I have just signed a petition to have knighthoods bestowed on the few remaining Battle of Britain pilots, men who really do deserve the thanks of the nation, not the Nick Cleggs, Barry Gibbs and Ringo Starrs of this world.

      • bluedog

        Yes, one can’t help feeling that the knighthood should have gone to Thomas the Tank Engine, who has done far more for the British economy than Ringo Starr.

      • dannybhoy

        Couldn’t agree more Mrs Proudie.
        To me the New Years Honours list evokes memories of Larry the Lamb, the Mayor of Toytown complete with foil covered chocolate coins and gold coloured plastic chains.. It has become totally debased and meaningless.
        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UVaJ19-UT9g from 1:47 in..
        Followed by a sketch that might remind one of the political coming together of David Cameron and Nick Clegg..
        btw. I signed that petition yesterday.
        Spooky..

  • magnolia

    A1 picture up top.

    • dannybhoy

      Really clever that..

  • bluedog

    Bravo, Mrs P!! Absolutely outstanding. Are you in the right job? It’s hard to imagine a better political satirist.

  • Mrs Proudie of Barchester

    Thank you so much dear friends, but I must thank His Grace too, for the photograph jiggery-pokery was his doing, not mine.

  • Norman Yardy

    To finish the year on such a high is a masterstroke. Mrs Proudie you should be proud of your work, it is amazing. Ebertreazer Stooge is a big disappointment particularly in her double minded ways.
    How she says we need to support our Christian Heritage and then support the LGBT group. It makes no sense and yet Corbyn would be worse.

    • Mrs Proudie of Barchester

      Goodness! You are most kind, dear Norman. Have a wonderful New Year!

  • David

    Pleased to see that the traitorous Heath is still “condemned to float on morning clouds”.

  • A sheer delight, Mrs Proudie!

    Two videos which bring home the contrast between a country ruled by the ‘atheistic Guardianista’ brigade and one where Christianity has overcome atheism: President Putin venerating icons in the Naval Cathedral in Kronstadt (3 mins) and the first Liturgy to be celebrated in the Grand Church of the Winter Palace in St Petersburg since 1917 (6¾ mins).

    • dannybhoy

      I watched the first vid and part of the second, (because frankly, golden vessels, embellished robes, incense and well groomed beards does nothing for me…)
      But Johnny what does this all prove?
      President Putin was a trained Soviet Union KGB operative. That same Soviet Union which sought to destroy the Church and replace it with the Communist vision of Utopia.
      That failed, and now Vladimir runs a corrupt Russian Mafiosi, amassing vast personal wealth in the process.
      Now it seems to me, he is using the Church and the innate patriotism of the Russian people to unite the nation whilst he continues to project Russian military power around the globe..
      At back of it all the threat of State violence remains…

      • @ dannybhoy—It proves that the instigators of the Revolution ultimately failed in their attempt to eradicate Christianity from Russia. However, learning from their mistakes and substituting mass immigration for genocide, they are now having much more luck in the West.

        Russia is returning to Christianity so you would expect her and President Putin to be demonized in Western media, which long ago passed out of anything resembling Christian ownership and control.

        It seems to me that the West has bombed rather more countries and killed rather more people than Putin’s Russia.

        What a shame you dislike the Winter Palace video. I think it’s the most beautiful and impressive service I have ever seen.

        • dannybhoy

          I don’t care for pomp and religious circumstance, it leaves me cold and reminds me of the cruelties and deceits inflicted on the uneducated and gullible. Priests are only men in robes; remember that.
          As for Russia is returning to Christianity, maybe. But for those who seek power and how to hold onto it, “if you can’t beat em, join ‘em – then manipulate them…..

          • Jilly

            The Russian version of the ‘long march through the institutions’.
            Putin already has control of the media, education at all levels, the Law, access to employment and control of the workforce. What among opinion formers and bodies of influence is left? The Church.
            And so he embraces it with a Russian bear hug…
            It will be interesting to see what happens to that church… will it’s theology remain unchanged or, now it is wooed by the govt, will it be weakened and corrupted? Ordination of women?
            I doubt even Putin would push same sex marriage etc as it is contrary to his macho image.

          • No SSM in Russia Jilly, they really value the family there. The Orthodox Church is strong it wont be bowing anytime soon to Western values.

          • Jilly

            Indeed not, Marie, no bowing to Western values but I wonder if it can hold out against ‘Putin values’….

          • His values as far as I know are traditional, conservative.

          • bluedog

            How do you like your plutonium cocktail, shaken or stirred?

          • That’s no longer on the menu.

          • bluedog

            One recalls that 14 prominent Russians have now died at the hands of the Russian regime, in Britain. Quite how anyone can seriously support Putin is not clear to this writer. Indeed, if there is a single reason for Farage’s exclusion, it’s nothing to do with Brexit, but very much a function of his support for Russia in general, and Putin in particular. But then a surprising number of people were sucked in by an earlier dictator.

          • Who are they? can you name them and how they died? Can you prove it?

          • magnolia

            Ah but these little things like proof are skimmed over. Seth Rich becomes a whole host of (nameless) Russian hackers, although it is proven that the Clinton e-mails were hacked locally due to the no of documents, the load, and the speed. Together with the fact that Julian Assange- who hates divulging sources, and cannot indeed afford to do so, got within a whisker of indicating it was he.

          • bluedog

            See reply to Marie.

          • bluedog
          • The Independent just copied from the American Buzz Feed News which ran an investigation into Russian assassinations, but interesting reading all the same.

            https://www.buzzfeed.com/heidiblake/from-russia-with-blood-14-suspected-hits-on-british-soil?utm_term=.pkLarXY9A#.ysk0dXk16

          • bluedog

            Nah, just anti-Russian propaganda planted by the evil US to detract from its own problems, like 800 military bases world-wide. S’pose bumping off your critics is smarter, not stronger.

          • dannybhoy

            Sez who Marie?

          • Jilly

            Yes..(hesitantly).. so he claims but I do not think many of his actions reflect Christian values.
            He is an autocrat who has stopped the opposition leader running against him in the next election and journalists and others who disagree with him have ‘accidents’ or lose their jobs. He has amassed a fortune and his oligarchic mates have done similarly.
            I think he will seek to use the church for his own ends and I wonder how the church will react: oppose or change?

          • This is Putin’s New Year speech begins from 0:42

          • Jon of GSG

            His actions in governing seem to me to be all those things which are the most often condemned and railed against in the Bible. For example, while he and his friends get super rich, the average Russian gets poorer. And regular “disappearances” etc of his opponents hardly speaks to me of someone with a Christian conscience.

            Compare in the Bible the relative importance of loving your neighbour (including enemies) and avoiding homosexuality, and see if you can then say the Russian regime acts in a more “christian” than ours or the American one.

          • The Russian government looks after Russia, but they are no pushover. The likes of the corrupt oligarchs that fled to Britain to carry on their dodgy activities of syphoning off vast sums of money from the Russian state and hiding it with the help of criminals and unsavoury people would be bound to come to a sticky end.

            I don’t know Putin’s personal finances, he might well be super rich, if he’s awarding himself with large amounts of Russian money then no doubt he will be found out. I heard him telling someone in an interview that you can’t take it with you when you die. And that is so true. I think he gets his reward from the Russian people who love him. He’ll go down in history as a great President. All the personal riches in the world can’t buy that.

            He is spending money on improving Russia, the Crimean bridge when it’s finished will bring proper water supply to the Crimea so the people will no longer have to pump it from a local well.
            He also spends money on the young. The railways are getting new trains, mothers have got more family allowance. They’ve had a bumper grain and sunflower seed harvest this year.
            Russians in cities and towns are getting better off although there is still plenty of poverty. It’s a vast country over several time zones to govern, prosperity wont just happen overnight. I follow “Different Russia” and “Different Russia Life”youtube channels about everyday life in a suburb 20 kms North East of Moscow.

            He supports regional Russian cultures. I think the Bible is interpreted the orthodox way and for some regions like the Cossack south east of Russia where they teach all male children from very young to fight and be tough to be able to protect their families and way of life isn’t such a bad idea. The Cossacks are fearless. We could do with some of them in Bradford! Asian gangs wouldn’t dare rape our girls and women.

          • Jon of GSG

            My point about oligarchs really is about all of them, not just the few who defy Putin and have to leave the country. For every one of those there are several who are still friends with Putin, are still in Russia and are still super-rich. And as you say there is an enormous amount of rural poverty, and very little change there since Putin came to power, surely partly because the proceeds of Russia’s natural resources are going so largely to Putin’s mates. As for his personal fortune, he is nothing if not a politician, and of course knows the right thing to say in an interview watched by people who don’t have millions!

            I’m sure you’re right about spending money, but every government spends money. My question is how far the government makes sure public revenue gets to the public and not into their own pockets. It seems clear that in Russia that is not very far.

            Finally – the thing that really bothers me morally about Putin is how careful he is to build up his own personal popularity and image – it really is a little cult of personality. He seems eaten up by personal pride to me, which is no healthy way for a leader to be. It allows him, for example, to feel his government has licence to do and say anything they want regardless of truth (not unexpected for an ex-KGB agent). During the Syrian conflict there have been one or two episodes where their account of events has changed so fast and contradicted itself so clearly it has almost been comical. You may remember how at one point Angela Merkel, after many months of dialogue, just stopped talking to him because she had realised nothing he said at all could be trusted. So I really see many reasons to think he has no interest in Christian morality at all, except when it happens to suit his political aims.

          • As far as I know Jon on Syria he’s been very consistent and correct. It’s the Western media that have been fabricating stories and funding fake organisations. The White Helmets for example. Independent journalism found them out for what they are.

            On Ukraine, well the fall out with Merkel was more to do with her supporting Ukraine joining the EU and steam rolling over the neighbourly trade agreements Ukraine had in place with Russia. Merkel was not being very Christian and her the leader of the CDU too!

          • Jon of GSG

            Indeed – I think the German government is pretty awful in many ways, not least towards Greece. But countries that fall out don’t necessarily stop talking to each other – it just is clear from all sorts of things that the Russian government lies about anything and everything as a matter of course. To be fair it’s true that they have done that since at least the 19th century, but I don’t think that excuses it. The number of different mutually contradictory accounts of events they give when the truth isn’t convenient is almost comical – like that airliner shot down over the Ukraine.

            Syria is one of those never-ending arguments I think, but it seems to me that in thinking about Russia’s role people tend to concentrate on the last few years, when they have quite rightly stepped in. But the chaotic situation is partly of their own making – they vetoed every UN resolution likely to result in peace early in the conflict. It seems to me they deliberately allowed the war to get worse and worse before marching in to enlarge their own interests and influence. Cleverly done, very good politics in a way, but showing total indifference to the death and woe caused to everyday Syrians for the sake of increasing Russian influence. (I should maybe say I have a Syrian friend who I’ve been Skyping with most weeks since before the war started, so we’ve talked it to death a bit! I’m sure his isn’t the only Syrian perspective.)

          • Russia is not an aggressor like the US, they do not go round stirring up trouble with colour revolutions and arming rebel terrorist groups in other countries to cause a war and regime change and calling it a humanitarian intervention!
            Russia vetoed the UN when they voted to get rid of Assad because they did not want Syria to end up like Iraq and Libya, namely a pile of lawless state amongst a pile of rubble! Syria isn’t that far from Russia and has Latakia Russian airbase there already. Russia will no doubt increase the size of the airbase in the future.
            Assad went to Russia and specifically asked Putin for help, and recently has personally thanked Putin as they go into peace talks later on this month again with Turkey, Iran, Russia and Syria. The Yanks, Israel and Saudi Arabia need to butt out.
            Ask your Syrian friend if he has received any nice food, seasonal treats and the like from Russia?

          • Jon of GSG

            I’m afraid Russia is completely an aggressor. I can’t think of any other country which has annexed part of another this century (though there may be one).

            Getting rid of Assad is not a recipe for lawlessness; the opposition was (and is) happy for the rest of the government to remain. The Russians have of course been very keen to overlook that fact (and of course Assad himself is very grateful). And really can you say that what has occurred in Syria has been significantly better than Iraq?

            The problem in Syria has been that the government has for many years been of the worst kind of repressive, brutal sort, with regular “disappearances”, killings and so on. For example, my friend’s 13-year-old cousin was shot walking home from school some years ago by a soldier, presumably just as target practice or for fun; and that’s just the sort of thing that happens – he’s far from unusual in having a relative who has had that kind of thing happen to him. Of course there were no consequences for the soldier. In that context, the way Russia has propped up the regime can’t be compensated for by nice food and “treats”.

            My friend thinks Syria has more or less become a Russian colony: apparently there is Russian (and Persian) all over the place in public now where previously there was only Arabic. And of course Syria politically is now very dependent on Russia where it wasn’t before. Good strategy by Russia, as I say.

            But this is part of a pattern of Russia generally making it its business to support tyrannical regimes: Belarus, many of the former Soviet “stans” and so on. Syria is just the latest. In geopolitical terms it obviously makes sense – there is power in having many smaller dependent countries which are impervious to the will of their own people. But if you think those peoples matter, then I think it’s difficult to see how that can be a Christian way of doing politics in the world. And to say it’s a more Christian government because although they support and sustain brutal and repressive government in many countries, they are against gay marriage – that’s just not the gospel I know.

          • No Russia is NOT an aggressor. The people of Crimea voted overwhelmingly to join Russia. Not a drop of blood was shed.
            I think you’ve been brainwashed by the BBC, ch4 and other US/Saudi/Israel supporting fake news spreading media outlets that wanted rid of Assad and the regime.

            As a lot of the Syrian population has left the country

          • Jon of GSG

            Hmm

            If I understand you right, you’re saying “if you disagree with me it’s most probably because you’ve been brainwashed”. That is the usual opinion of someone who has himself (or herself) been brainwashed. Not that I’m saying you have been, but what you say there isn’t an argument. As it goes I try to get my news from as many sources as possible in as many countries (and languages) as I can, on the whole, and evaluate their truthfulness as well as I can. Fortunately on Syria I’m reasonably well able to do that.

            Of all these things we’ve been talking about, I suppose we could go on talking about them for ever, so I won’t go point-by-point through what you say, but:

            1. I will answer your question about my friend’s cousin, as I remember it was in an area that was entirely controlled by the government and close to an army headquarters. It’s also not as if the government’s soldiers particularly try to cover these things up anyway – they have no fear of public opinion, after all, and it appears they were just doing it for sport.

            And as for Syria becoming a Russian satellite – it’s not about military control, it’s about economic and political control, and it’s not about what’s going to happen, it’s about what has already happened. Of course Russia has not spent all this money on a big military campaign without expecting significant payback – especially not when they could have allowed the situation to be alleviated by diplomatic means much earlier (though not so much to their own advantage). But we’ve been over this.

            I should probably also say that I don’t condone the West getting involved in arming Islamic fundamentalist rebels either (or at least certainly not at the stage they did). But this discussion is whether Russia is pursuing recognisably Christian policies in the world, rather than whether they are simply better or worse than other powers.

            2. The annexation of the Crimea was done very cleverly and (in a sense) humanely, but by any way of looking at it it was an act of war, and therefore aggression. The referendum, as I’m sure you know, was an after-the-fact thing and declared invalid by the UN General Assembly. Having said that, I feel sure that it would have been a pro-Russia result at any time, but that doesn’t stop annexation being an act of aggression.

            I’m sure none of those ideas are new to you though. If you don’t think a military annexation of part of a foreign country is aggression, regardless of bloodshed, then I think we will have to just disagree on that one.

          • We’ll have to agree to disagree on Crimea. BTW have you sampled some of the new Crimean wine?
            It’s only certain countries like US, UK, SA that are insisting that Russia committed an act of aggression in annexing Crimea. The fact that NATO and the EU is on the march and sending in arms and troops to all their countries surrounding Russia is not aggression then is it?
            The West is dying to get their greedy little hands on Russia, well I say to them Thou shalt not covert thy neighbours resources. It’s us that has lost our Christian faith. I would say Putin and Russia are more Christian and it’s in growth. I’m not saying they are perfect of course.

            Dreadnought posted a link to an excellent Oliver Stone Documentary about Ukraine well worth watching the whole 1hr 34mins of it. Called “Ukraine on Fire” Here it is again:

            https://www.sott.net/article/373841-Ukraine-on-Fire-How-US-Not-Russia-Destroyed-Ukraine-Oliver-Stone-Documentary-Finally-Available-VIDEO

          • Jon of GSG

            Oh, and no, I haven’t had the Crimean wine. I don’t really know good wine from bad, unfortunately – the only alcohol I know anything about is beer and mead. I will keep an eye open though.

          • Jon
            Just thought I’d post you this on Orthodox Epiphany

            https://www.rt.com/news/416350-putin-icy-dip-video/

        • bluedog

          Well Johnny, as the politics of Austria and Hungary move into alignment, perhaps one should anticipate the re-emergence of another tradition. Certainly the congregation are better looking.

          • @ bluedog—As the tradition re-emerges, Dr von Habsburg, stalwart of the EU Fan Club, is rotating ever more violently in his tomb.

          • bluedog

            One suspects that given the chance he would be more Habsburgphile than Europhile.

      • Look at how many military bases the US has around the world and count how many Russia has then tell me who projects military power around the globe?
        Putin is not planning to waste a lot of money on arming up like Trump is, no, he’s realised that an arms race is not the way forward.

        Russia’s response to Trumps defence strategy: Smarter not stronger.

        • dannybhoy

          Garbagio Marie.
          The Pax Americano was conceived to protect and promote the American version of Western democracy and freedom in the world.
          Yes, greed and corruption got into the American political system, but hasn’t that always been the case?
          The fact is that for all its excesses and failings the USA has kept Western Europe and other parts of the world safe from Communism, Russian mischief, Islamic terrorism and Chinese expansionism.
          Which would you rather live under?

          • I disagree, the Pax Americano was conceived to protect American interests and American companies’ interests and profits. NATO did a good job of protecting the West from Communism and Russian mischief, but it’s had its day. Times are changing.

            USA has stirred up trouble around the world, and dragged us into wars we didn’t really want to be involved in. They walked away suddenly from the Anti Balistic Missile Treaty without a second thought about how doing so would effect the delicate balance of powers with others. Funny idea you have of keeping us safe.

            I’d rather live in a Great Britain that is not shackled to any one nation.

          • dannybhoy

            But alone we cannot stand..
            Not in ww2 and certainly not now.
            Example:
            How many technologically advanced nations do you know that would build and pay for a brand new aircraft carrier,
            but have no warplanes to put on it…?

          • IanCad

            Two new carriers Danny; The UK government does not do insanity by half measures.

          • dannybhoy

            Ridiculous.
            The Daily Telegraph printed a review of our armed forces on 28th December..
            http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/defence/10924976/Why-Britains-armed-forces-are-shrinking-by-the-day-and-does-it-really-matter.html
            Example 2
            What island nation would allow its navy to shrink to such an extent that if Russia so wished she could overwhelm us in a few days. We only have 74 battleworthy craft available (including submarines), but we do have 38 admirals and 206 captains to call upon..
            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_active_Royal_Navy_ships

            What island nation preparing to leave the European Union,
            Facing increasing threats of home grown terrorism,
            People trafficking by organised criminal gangs,
            Plus illegal immigration around her coastlines,
            And facing potential civil unrest because of political and economic uncertainty;
            would deliberately choose to shrink the numbers of police officers and military personnel??

          • Ray Spring

            God Bless America!

        • bluedog

          It seems that Putin’s delivery and the content are the oratorial equivalent of mogadon. Go forward to 0.48 and look at the generals sleeping off a good lunch as Putin drones on.

        • dannybhoy

          “Russia’s response to Trumps defence strategy: Smarter not stronger.”
          And not a bad strategy either, but in the global context the big dogs are positioning to secure mineral resources, military bases to protect their interests. The world is a much more dangerous place now. The likelihood of middle eastern style guerilla warfare in Europe grows, and meantime we diminish our civil and miltary capabilities rather than strengthen them.
          Russia faces similar problems with terrorism, and that nation has always needed strong leaders to hold it together. So Putin recognising the enduring influence of the Church is wise to foster good relations with it. What his own beliefs are I have no idea, but (admirably) he is putting Russian interests first. I wish we could say the same for our own politicians..

    • Mrs Proudie of Barchester

      Thank you so much dear Johnny….I must say I had fun writing it!

    • Manfarang

      “a country ruled by the ‘atheistic Guardianista’ ‘”
      I don’t think Mrs.May reads the Guardian nor does anyone in the DUP.

      • @ Manfarang—Reginald McKenna, a former Chancellor of the Exchequer, speaking in 1924 as Chairman of Midland Bank: ‘…they who control the credit of the nation direct the policy of Governments and hold in the hollow of their hands the destiny of the people.’ Mrs May, like all post-war prime ministers, is merely a stooge.

        • Manfarang

          They read the Financial Times.

  • len

    Well said Mrs Proudie .
    ‘Captain Ted’ is now a crew member on the’ Black Pearl’, a fitting move for such a treacherous dog.

    • dannybhoy

      The Flying Dutchman more like, Len.

  • Inspector General

    One of the finest pieces of literature the Inspector has ever read, Mrs Proudie! Should be on the National curriculum.

    Meanwhile, there be open wailing as very much dead gay god George Michael fails to be given an expected posthumous dukedom, and Peter Tachell is not elevated to Prince of the Realm. For services to the confused young, don’t you know…

    However, its not all bad news.The Very Reverend Professor Iain Torrance gets a knighthood for undermining Christianity.

    • Inspector General

      The Duke of Hampstead Heath at Media Nox

      • Mrs Proudie of Barchester

        No knighthood for you this year, Inspector?

        • Chefofsinners

          He’s already a Knight of the Order of the Bath. (KnOB)

          • Inspector General

            Any more of that and the Inspector will shake the piss out of you…

        • Inspector General

          Alas, Mrs Proudie, The Inspector’s top hat, frock coat, silver topped cane and monocle will not be needed at the immediate.

          As this man is not a politician whose future allegiance needs to be encouraged, he presumes a fat cheque will help things along. Whom should it be addressed to?

  • Chris Bell

    Due to the forensically accurate direction given to our thoughts by Mr Rottenborough below we see how Church and State must embody the Efficient and the Dignified under God if a society is to be governed wholesomely and well.
    The fact that our State finds Mr Putin anathema shows our dismal lack of the Efficient.
    The fact that our Church even finds it difficult to pronounce the word Divine, lest it cause offence, shows our fearful indecency.
    The Guardianista Collective and the pantomime Church are shaming this nation.
    And Russia is laughing because Russia is strong and becoming stronger in the Efficient and the Dignified.

  • IrishNeanderthal

    There was once an advertisement for a well-known brand of tea, featuring a chimpanzee captain in his yacht “Morning Tea”. It was pulled very quickly.

    • Manfarang

  • Father David

    Well, let’s hope that after her encounter with the various phantoms Ebertreaza Stooge, like Scrooge before her, will have a transformative Damascene experience and having seen the light will ditch Brexit. Thus all our children and grandchildren can with Tiny Tim proclaim “God bless us everyone”.

    • Mrs Proudie of Barchester

      We have a vacant chaplaincy on St, Helena, interested?

      • Mrs Proudie of Barchester

        It was almost going to be Heligoland, but I took pity…

      • Father David

        The tentacles of the Bishop of Barchester reach far and wide.

    • DespiteBrexit

      Did you completely misunderstand the moral of Dickens’s original, as well?

  • ecclesiaman

    A fit and deserving satire on those who seek to govern us. They lost their way up the greasy pole and one wonders to who or what they are subservient. Not the law, parliament or the people. What is left but more treachery.

    • Mrs Proudie of Barchester

      Many thanks dear ecclesiaman….

  • Truly excellent Mrs Proudie, you are very talented.
    It should be performed all over the country and televised too.

    • dannybhoy

      I agree. “Mrs Proudie” is very talented, and may perhaps develop her literary gift further, should she be so inclined -or reclined, depending on her er, inclination….

      • Mrs Proudie of Barchester

        Inverted commas eh? Tsk tsk!

      • I do hope so, there is very little proper meaningful humour in todays society, except for some of the Telegraph’s cartoons and sometimes “Have I Got News For You” comedy is all so politically correct and unfunny.

    • Mrs Proudie of Barchester

      I shall write to the National Theatre immediately – many thanks dear Marie

  • betteroffoutofit

    Brilliant satire Mrs. Proudie — thank you!

    • Mrs Proudie of Barchester

      A little wickedness here and there does wonders for the circulation!

  • Chefofsinners

    “To those who sadly have no winkle,
    Transgendered dust on them I sprinkle.”

    Enough of this. I have resolved to be more gentlemanly towards the transgendered, as befits a man of my breeding. Knobless oblige.

    • Mrs Proudie of Barchester

      You are a naughty naughty man…but I like you!

    • Happy Jackie

      #MeToo.

      • dannybhoy

        Happy Jackie –
        or Wee Wully Winkie
        in pig tails?

  • Jeremiah 11:14. The vultures are coming home to roost. We are going to get what we deserve.

    • Mrs Proudie of Barchester

      Well I deserve a stiff gin…

      • I’ll swallow one for you milady.

        • Mrs Proudie of Barchester

          We’ll have to make sure the bishop is out…

      • betteroffoutofit

        So, as the gin-trap in my hand always reminded me, Milady –
        “O Thou who didst with pitfall and with gin
        Beset the road I was to wander in,
        Thou wilt not with Predestination round
        Enmesh me, and impute my fall to sin?” (Rubaiyat/Fitzgerald; 225-228)

        Even that old sot Omar knew It’s worth a prayer . . .

        . . .

  • Chefofsinners

    Meanwhile a rival production is playing at the Old Vic, directed by Kevin ’not so safe’ Spacey:
    Sick Brittington tells the tale of a country seeking its fortune. “It’s behind you” chorus the people. “Oh no it isn’t” reply the politicians. “It’s in Brussels.”
    However, the streets of Brussels turn out not to be paved with gold after all, and the evil King EurocRat is out to destroy Sick Brittington. Fortunately his faithful cat, Rees-Moggy, and Mr Fitzfarage, a wealthy merchant, step in.
    King EurocRat accuses Sick Brittington of trying to make off with 50 billion euros, but the fat, blond and somewhat shambolic fairy Bo-bells tells him to turn again.
    The good ship Brexit sets sail and trades around the world, becoming fabulously wealthy. Sick Brittington marries the beautiful Anglicanism and they all live happily ever after.

    • bluedog

      One reads of the recent death of the noted seer Baba Vanga, CoS, known to her family as Vangelia Gushterova. While our hearts go out to her loved ones at this sad and difficult time, one feels that a gap in the prophecy market has opened up and awaits exploitation. Who will fill the space? You? Or can we rely on Mrs Proudie?

      • Chefofsinners

        It’s a female thing. My wife has the uncanny ability to tell me exactly what I’m going to do.

        • Mrs Proudie of Barchester

          The bishop would say much the same thing…

      • Mrs Proudie of Barchester

        Always, dear bluedog

        • bluedog

          Looking forward to your gap yah in the prophecy line.

      • Chefofsinners

        Dead you say? I bet she didn’t see that coming.

        • bluedog

          Alas, Baba was blind, CoS. Worse, one understands that times are tough in Bulgaria and she may have cancelled delivery of the local edition of the Jupiter in Braille. Unable to read her own horoscope, one can only imagine the desperate straits in which she found herself. One eagerly awaits the incantations of Baba Proudie.

    • Mrs Proudie of Barchester

      I believe Miss Austen is busy penning a new novella on the Brexit debacle, entitled ‘Nonsense and Incredibility’

      • Father David

        In this enterprise I believe that Miss Austen is being assisted by all the top Whitehall Mandarins – all of whom think Brexit to be total and utter madness. .I look forward to the work she is planning to publish in March 2019 – Pride comes before a fall and Prejudice towards all foreigners.

  • Politically__Incorrect

    I suspect that Mrs May and her band of surrender monkeys have already cooked their Christmas goose and are about to find out what it is like to be well and truly stuffed themselves. There will be a very bad smell too thanks to the mouldy Brussels sprouts. There’ll be no wine because a certain fellow from Luxembourg got to it first and a certain Ms Abbott will have scoffed all the chocolates. No worries for Clegg though. He can just grab his knighthood and jump straight onto the gravy train.

  • Dreadnaught

    A Cracker Proudie – a Christmas Cracker

    • Mrs Proudie of Barchester

      dear boy, many thanks

    • dannybhoy

      Rare praise indeed from HMS Dreadnaught..

      • Dreadnaught

        Bit harsh there Dandini – Happy New Year to come old lad.

        • dannybhoy

          And to you and yours Dreadders.
          Thanks for all your contributions during 2017, and may you be blessed during 2018.

  • Manfarang

    “Reducing the surplus British population and importing new stock from darker continents knocks the stuffing out of one”
    I am watching Imperium at this moment Similar sentiments.

    • bluedog

      For you, one recommends Jack Whitehall : Travels with My Father, on Netflix.

      • Manfarang

        Regarding the show,the Elephant polo is in Hua Hin not Bangkok.
        There is a little railway to nowhere which runs to Mae Klong from Bangkok. Tickets just a few baht.
        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maeklong_Railway
        I remember three young British men who took a train ride in Cambodia for fun in 1994,
        It didn’t turn out too well. They were kidnapped and murdered by the Khmer Rouge.
        It’s a bit safer today, no Khmer Rouge.

    • IrishNeanderthal

      Reducing the surplus British population

      If that were their intention, it would amount to genocide. However, I recently came across the term democide, meaning putting a population under such stress for other reasons that a lot of them are killed off. A classic example is what the Belgian King Leopold II did to the inhabitants of the Congo, quite possibly in the name of “progress”.

      In Britain, it has been much more subtle. Throughout Western Europe, toxic ideas have slowly been depleting the native populations. Under the advice of economists (who differ from astrologers in that the latter did at least base their predictions on real stars) the shortfall in labour has been filled by importing people from regions closer to the Equator.

      Now some of those people (especially of the kind the Inspector seems to like least) did receive, in my opinion, a rotten welcome to England’s Green and Pleasant Land. However others come fitted with a type of mind shield which insulates them from the propaganda to which we have been subjected, and so their populations increase, as they did in their countriues of origin to the detriment of the surronding natives.

      So please do not conflate worry for one’s own people with fascism, especially since one of our leaders seemed to relish the thought of “rubbing our faces in diversity”.

      Something for you to enjoy: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ViJfebHhIVs

      • Manfarang

        In the UK the native population has not been depleted. In 1945 the population was 49 million to todays 59 million. In that time immigration was restricted. People from the Commonwealth were stopped from entering freely, In recent years those that have come are mostly from Eastern Europe not the tropics.

        • IrishNeanderthal

          I am quite nit-picky about my language. I spoke of “closer to the Equator”, not “the tropics”. The parents or grandparents of those dancers in the video may well have among those who received the “rotten welcome” I referred to. But those formed only the first wave of immigrants.

          I will have to step out of the framework of elegant language encouraged by Mrs Proudie, and refer you to this article:https://www.steynonline.com/7428/it-still-the-demography-stupid Notice where, for example, the author agrees with Mullah Omar.

          These days I spend less time in academic company, and I do not think it fascistic to mention the concerns raised by people, many of whom live in local authority accomodation.

  • DespiteBrexit

    Very good. Very, very good.

    But I think you meant “… thereby hangs a tale”, not “tail”?!

    • dannybhoy

      Errrm.
      Not necessarily..

      • Mrs Proudie of Barchester

        Indeed…

      • IrishNeanderthal

        I agree. The whole thing seems to have been a load of woolly monkey business.

        Being new world monkeys, knowledge of their existence might only just have reached England by Shakespeare’s time. “I could a tail unfold . . .”

      • DespiteBrexit

        Ah, a reference to dogs – I assume? Yes, I was a bit slow.

        • dannybhoy

          Your innocence and purity of heart should shames us all…

    • Ray Sunshine

      Read the words immediately preceding.

    • Manfarang

      The year of The Dog.

  • Philip Rosen

    Very good! I had a good chuckle. But there is no need for apparitions. Remember Theresa past and present, and you have Theresa future. Fence sitting indecision; it’s not very encouraging.

    • dannybhoy

      But she walks, she talks.
      One should be grateful for small mercies..

  • carl jacobs

    celebrate what unites us and not obsess over what divides.

    Our collective dislike of Manchester United?

    • CliveM

      No, we will pretend charity towards them.

      • carl jacobs

        Must we?

        • Do you have a choice?

          A Calvinist arrived at the Gates of Heaven. He sees that there are two lines going in. One has a sign that reads “predestined,” and the other, “free will”. He naturally heads to the predestined line.

          While waiting, an angel comes and asks him “Why are you in this line?”
          He replies, “Because I chose it.”
          The angel looks surprised, “Well, if you ‘chose’ it, then you should be in the free will line.”
          So our Calvinist, now slightly miffed, obediently wanders over to the free will line.
          Again, after a few minutes, another angel asks him, “Why are you in this line?”
          He sullenly replies, “Someone made me come here.”

          • carl jacobs

            If you are considering a post- retirement stint as a comedian, you should probably think about other options.

          • At least Jack has a choice!

          • carl jacobs

            No, Jack. You don’t really have a choice in this matter. Look here. This is funny.

            http://babylonbee.com/news/santa-claus-converts-calvinism-moves-everybody-naughty-list/

          • No, Carl. It’s not funny.

          • carl jacobs

            Poor Jack. It must be awful for you having to live with such an underdeveloped sense of humor. Check out the Neutron Joke, Jack. That might help. Perhaps we should start you on milk instead of meat.

          • The reason it’s not funny is that your Father Christmas will give gifts to some rather than offer them to all. It’s dark.

          • dannybhoy

            Excellent.

        • CliveM

          Yes we must.

    • Now that’s “sectarianism”.

      Sectarianism is a form of bigotry, discrimination, or hatred arising from attaching relations of inferiority and superiority to differences between subdivisions within a group. Common examples are denominations of a religion, ethnic identity, class, or region for citizens of a state and factions of a political movement. [or football teams]

      Happy New Year!

      City were mighty lucky today …..

      • IrishNeanderthal

        City were mighty lucky today …..

        ‘Etihad’ translates very roughly as ‘United’.

  • Defending the Truth isn’t “sectarianism”. Only a woolly minded proddie would say such a thing.
    Happy New Year!

    • CliveM

      Have a good ‘un!

      • Cressida de Nova

        You are my favourite Protestant. Happy New Year !

  • May we all be alive at this same time next year,
    May the Lord keep us in the palm of His hand,
    and never close His fist too tight,
    May we live as long as we want,
    and never want as long as live!

    May trouble neglect us,
    The angels protect us,
    Heaven accept us,
    And may the best day of our past be the worst day of our future!

    • That’s lovely HJ.

      • Mix of Irish New Year Blessings, Marie.
        Have a Happy New Year.

        • Thank you and a Happy and Healthy New Year to you and your family too.

        • Cressida de Nova

          Happy New Year Jack ! xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

          • And you too, Cressie.
            Much love xxxxx

          • dannybhoy

            Ho Ho Ho!
            Wishing you a wonderful new year Cressida.

          • Cressida de Nova

            Happy New Year O Dannyboy.

    • Pubcrawler

      Indeed, HJ, and thank you for that.

      Yet let us not forget absent friends. Others may add to the litany but for my part I particularly miss The Explorer, who we may hope has arrived at his deserved destination.

      May the Lord bless us and keep us.

      • Chefofsinners

        Hear, hear. If you’re out there, Explorer, thanks for all the erudite and thoughtful contributions.

        And farewell Linus. You were, um,… quite French.

        • dannybhoy

          Linus was okay..

          • Inspector General

            Danny. Linus would have gleefully kissed you on the cheek to give you a day out at the lion enclosure and he wouldn’t need the incentive of thirty pieces of silver for doing it…

          • dannybhoy

            Colour me naive, but any non believer who posts here is seeking something.
            Maybe to see how we Christians respond to attack.
            Or,
            how we defend our faith intellectually.
            Or,
            our attitudes to social issues..
            And so on…
            So we should try to treat them with respect and Christian forebearance, and not say the things that confirm their worst suspicions.

          • Inspector General

            That’s an easy one. Anyone seeking enlightenment comes not only with curiosity and questions but also the respect that is due in payment, for want of a better description. Linus never bothered with respect, yet Cranmer gave him some years grace before the final judgment of banishment. One is quite sure our own souls at life’s end will be required to display respect too.

          • dannybhoy

            Linus had an agenda; he is gay and could not see that we Christians could accept him as a person whilst rejecting the lifestyle. Actually God used him to do us a favour; we had to face up to whether we were simply rejecting him because he was gay, or trying to reach out to him despite his being gay…
            What ever our attitudes to him, Who were we serving?

          • CliveM

            I think I will miss Explorer and Uncle Brian more. Their contributions will be missed.

            Personally I’ve had enough of Linus, he’s had to much attention.

          • dannybhoy

            I wouldn’t disagree Clive, but my point is that in whatever way, I would like to be a help in bringing someone closer to the Lord.

          • bluedog

            Linus had some very interesting things to say and could be wickedly funny. But there was a downside he didn’t seem able to overcome, let alone control, witness his extremely unpleasant attacks on Mrs Proudie and other women. Bipolar is the word that springs to mind. Very sad, really, ‘cos there was high intelligence and real talent at work.

          • Inspector General

            God, if he used Linus, is going to bin him away. Because God is like that, Danny.

          • dannybhoy

            We don’t know that IG. I think that God will use every avenue, every Christian to try and bring Linus into salvation. I don’t want it on my ‘record sheet’ that I was a hinderance rather than a help..

          • bluedog

            Well said.

          • Mrs Proudie of Barchester

            I think you make an excellent point…

          • Manfarang

            Christianity is diverse, many denominations.

          • dannybhoy

            In an official sense it is, but all those of us who in a very personal and humble way have come into that mystical place where we recognise ourselves as sinners, delivered from death and destruction by the Pascal Lamb, our Saviour and High Priest the Lord Jesus Christ, the Alpha and Omega;
            We are the Bride of Christ, the Body of Christ, the Redeemed.
            There are no denominations.
            Our unity is through the indwelling power of the Holy Spirit, that gentle Dove with whom we are sealed and through Whom we are being transformed..we are family.
            And Danny is so grateful to be a part of that family:
            Alleluia!

          • bluedog

            Very true, db. His Grace’s blog has a remarkable record in this regard and Linus is the only ‘failure’ that this communicant can recall.

          • dannybhoy

            Another thing I like about this blog is that it manages to attract all sorts, but in expressing our individual opinions we sometimes lose sight of Who it is we answer to..

          • bluedog

            Agreed. It would very boring if the views expressed were monochrome.

    • David

      Thank you, very good HJ.

  • Chefofsinners

    A year to forget? Not necessarily. Who knows what beauty the Almighty will bring forth from these ashes, in His time?
    I have enjoyed it. So here’s a poem by Rupert Brooke:

    Tenderly, day that I have loved, I close your eyes,
    And smooth your quiet brow, and fold your thin dead hands.
    The grey veils of the half-light deepen; colour dies.
    I bear you, a light burden, to the shrouded sands,
    Where lies your waiting boat, by wreaths of the sea’s making Mist-garlanded, with all grey weeds of the water crowned.
    There you’ll be laid, past fear of sleep or hope of waking;
    And over the unmoving sea, without a sound,

    Faint hands will row you outward, out beyond our sight,
    Us with stretched arms and empty eyes on the fargleaming
    And marble sand.… Beyond the shifting cold twilight,
    Further than laughter goes, or tears, further than dreaming,
    There’ll be no port, no dawn-lit islands! But the drear
    Waste darkening, and, at length, flame ultimate on the deep.
    Oh, the last fire—and you, unkissed, unfriended there!
    Oh, the lone way’s red ending, and we not there to weep!

    (We found you pale and quiet, and strangely crowned with flowers,
    Lovely and secret as a child. You came with us,
    Come happily, hand in hand with the young dancing hours,
    High on the downs at dawn!)

    Void now and tenebrous,
    The grey sands curve before me.… From the inland meadows,
    Fragrant of June and clover, floats the dark, and fills
    The hollow sea’s dead face with little creeping shadows,
    And the white silence brims the hollow of the hills.

    Close in the nest is folded every weary wing,
    Hushed all the joyful voices; and we, who held you dear,
    Eastward we turn and homeward, alone, remembering…
    Day that I loved, day that I loved, the Night is here!

    • dannybhoy

      Cor, ‘e used a lot of words to say not a lot..
      ‘Aht wiv the old an’ in wiv the new’ sums that up
      (sniff!)

      • Chefofsinners

        It’s called dwelling on a subject. Exploring and meditating on it. Something we are in danger of losing in the modern age.

        • dannybhoy

          I’m a GA Studdert Kennedy fan. More understandable, just as meaningful. It was hell for all.

  • Mrs Proudie of Barchester

    Happy New Year to all my lovely friends…I think 1863 is going to be a wonderful year with blessings for us all….

    • Father David

      Does that include me too?

      • Mrs Proudie of Barchester

        Especially you x

        • Father David

          Wow! A kiss from Mrs. Proudie. It’s a good job you can’t see me blushing!

          • Chefofsinners

            It’s an x, short for Brexit.

          • dannybhoy

            Mrs Proudie would never descend to throwing xs at anyone..

          • Mrs Proudie of Barchester

            I made an exception…

          • Father David

            So, when did you ever get a kiss from dear, dear, Mrs. Proudie then?

          • Chefofsinners

            Boasting is unattractive, David.

    • Manfarang

      1863 The year of the Horse, or was it hoarse.

      • bluedog

        Hearse?

        • Chefofsinners

          Horse’s arse?

          • bluedog

            Her’s.

          • Chefofsinners

            Whose?

    • Dreadnaught

      And the same back to you Dear Lady.
      As is my wont, I attended the annual family visit to our local WiseWoman, cat collector and local old crone Sweaty Betty. As they say round these parts if you can stand the smell you’ve got it licked. I attach herein her latest prognostications on the forthcoming next 12 months, which I invite you to put to the test and mark up on your calendar for future reference. Here goes:-
      8 January – Yorkshire County Cricket Club is founded at the Adelphi Hotel in Sheffield.
      10 January – the first section of the London Underground Railway opens to the public (Paddington to Farringdon Street).
      7 February – HMS Orpheus sinks attempting to enter Manukau Harbour in New Zealand with the loss of 189 lives.
      25 February – William Thomson enthroned as Archbishop of York.
      10 March – marriage of Albert Edward, Prince of Wales (later Edward VII) to Princess Alexandra of Denmark (later Queen Alexandra) at St George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle.
      27 May – Broadmoor Criminal Lunatic Asylum at Crowthorne receives its first patients.
      4 June – the Eton Boating Song is first performed.
      15–17 August – Bombardment of Kagoshima: Royal Navy bombards the town of Kagoshima in Japan in retribution after the Namamugi Incident of 1862.
      20 August – Ladies’ London Emancipation Society established as an abolitionist group in support of the Union (American Civil War) by Clementia Taylor at Aubrey House.
      26 October – the Football Association is founded at the Freemasons’ Tavern in Long Acre, London.
      8 December – the Football Association laws are agreed.
      19 December – linoleum patented.
      19 December – the first game is played under the new Football Association rules at Mortlake between Ebenezer Morley’s Barnes Club and Richmond F.C., ending in a goalless draw.

      Happy New Year you little Minx.

      • Mrs Proudie of Barchester

        And a Happy New Year to you too! My goodness, I am impressed by all y0ur research…

        • Dreadnaught

          I must confess It was a straight ten second cheat.

      • DespiteBrexit

        Copyright Google and/or Wikipedia?!

        • Dreadnaught

          neat Wiki – just too good to for me not to pass on.

  • Inspector General

    Greetings fellows.

    This may be new year’s day, but the vigilance goes on…

    The Frankfurt School has 11 objectives to destroy society [#2].

    1) The creation of racism offences.
    2) Continual change to create confusion
    3) The teaching of sex and homosexuality to children
    4) The undermining of schools’ and teachers’ authority
    5) Huge immigration to destroy identity.
    6) The promotion of excessive drinking
    7) Emptying of churches
    8) An unreliable legal system with bias against victims of crime
    9) Dependency on the state or state benefits
    10) Control and dumbing down of media
    11) Encouraging the breakdown of the family.

    It’s up to us old guard to stop this, what!

    So let’s keep going…

    • dannybhoy

      And petitioning, and contacting our MPs, and Government…
      “Never give in. Never surrender!”
      (Galaxy Quest quote)
      (But very apt.)

      • Inspector General

        Reads as the Labour Party manifesto, eh, Danny? Any Christian who supports that crowd needs to give their position serious thought in 2018. In fact, one would be interested to hear from anyone who thinks what Labour is about is compatible with Christian belief…

        • bluedog

          What’s with the ‘Christian’ stuff, IG? Aren’t you a disciple of the ‘Higher Understanding’, the sequel to Christianity? Has the New Year brought on a sudden sensation of nostalgia for the Old Religion?

          • dannybhoy

            My best guess he’s a Unitarian..

          • bluedog

            We’re yet to get a proof reading on the Holy Spirit, db.

          • Royinsouthwest

            I think the Inspector has signed the pledge. Take note of point 6 in the list that he condemned.

            6) The promotion of excessive drinking

          • Chefofsinners

            The Inspector thinks the Pledge is furniture polish.

          • Royinsouthwest

            Furniture polish should only be drunk in moderation!

          • bluedog

            If you know the brand name of a furniture polish, next you’ll be telling us you use fish-knives.

          • Chefofsinners

            I confess a certain fondness for Georgian berry spoons, but why would anyone not employ the full range of cutlery available?

          • bluedog

            One has yet to see fish-knives on offer in Ikea.

          • Chefofsinners

            Likewise, on account of never having darkened those doors. One hears the most ghastly tales.
            A fish knife separates the flesh from the bone in a most pleasing and efficient manner. You really should indulge yourself.

          • carl jacobs

            More of an Imperial pagan.

          • Inspector General

            Ah! Carl’s arrived…

            “Can I shoot him now, Mr Mainwaring?”

          • carl jacobs

            Well, you aren’t a Unitarian. And your theological musings are overtly pagan. So …

          • Inspector General

            You dare suggest that the understanding of Christ immediately following his departure is pagan!

            You damn yourself, sir.

          • carl jacobs

            Yeah, well. That’s me being a Berean again.

          • Inspector General

            Christ’s disciples knew him for what he said he was, Bluedog. Not God, but the Son of God. He knew he was an immortal. As immortals cannot begat other immortals, then only they, they alone, can claim God to be their father. If you stick with the disciples, you can’t go wrong. Do you see how it works now, the Higher Understanding?

          • bluedog

            Oh my golly-gosh, IG. We seem to be drifting along way from Nicaea here, and challenging the divinity of Christ. If this is your position, it’s not Christian. This communicant would describe the ‘Higher Understanding’ as ‘misunderstanding’.

          • Inspector General

            Blame the Greek influence in early Christianity, Bluedog. It was their ancient myths that had gods walking around on earth.

          • bluedog

            But these ancient myths are clearly replaced by Christianity. And in any event, three of the five original patriarchates were Greek speaking, so Greek influence was unavoidable. So what, one might ask.

          • Inspector General

            Not sure if you fully appreciate the concept of influence. For example the surfeit of holly and ivy at this time of year.

          • bluedog

            Purely peripheral, IG, and nothing to do with the centrality of Christian belief.

        • Manfarang

          Well here is something that will cheer you up.
          https://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/opinion/news-analysis/momentum-is-just-like-militant-intent-on-wrecking-labour-party-36449834.html
          As regard religion. it is said the British Labour Party owes more to Methodism than to Marx. It has its Christian socialists, the most famous recent one became a Catholic.
          In parts of Scotland the Labour Party relies on Catholic support.

      • Manfarang

        No surrender. Big Ian’s manifesto (although he mellowed in old age).

    • Chefofsinners

      Let’s focus on the positive.
      Proclaim the message of God’s love and forgiveness, offered to all mankind. Do good to all. Live holy lives.

      • Inspector General

        Here’s more positive. Militant LGBT have entered 2018 as Militant TLGB. This year will see the breakup of unified organised on-line buggery into pro and anti tranny camps. It’s open civil war on PN.

        This wonderful state of affairs includes the inability to sit on the fence. The keyboard terrorists will get you for NOT supporting their position as much as if you come out against them. Both sides.

        The end is neigh for them, which will spare our creator from coming up with another biblical plague to get rid of them, or at least thin them out.

    • Manfarang

      “The promotion of excessive drinking”
      That’s you done for.

      • len

        lol .

      • dannybhoy

        Very sharp..

        • Inspector General

          Not really. Manfarang’s a well known arse on this site…

          • Manfarang

            2 That the aged men be sober, grave, temperate, sound in faith, in charity, in patience.

  • len

    “All the darkness in the world cannot extinguish the light of a single candle.”

    (Not exactly sure who said this but whoever did was focusing on the positive)

    There is plenty of darkness around( a spiritual darkness) which attempts to put out the Light of the Gospel of Jesus Christ ,but it will not succeed.

    The birth of Jesus Christ was the entrance of Light into this world and Christians need to focus on the Light ,not ignoring the failures of the Church, but realizing that God will act through true believers whenever the Church is failing.

    So let us press on, ignoring the attempts of the church to re write the Gospel, the attempts of liberals to corrupt the minds of our youth and focus on Jesus Christ the True Light of this World.

    • It was Saint Francis Of Assisi.

      • len

        I believe so Jack

  • IanCad

    A happy and fulfilling New Year to all.
    Thanks for the parody Mrs. P. We will need your sharp, perceptive and timely humour to rally the troops when the time is ripe. History teaches it is generally unwise to wait until all peaceful remedies have been tried before raising the sword.

  • David

    As we enter 2018 it is vital that we Christians in the west always remember this, and thus retain a sense of perspective. Whilst in the west fewer people bow the knee to Jesus Christ as their personal Saviour and the Lord of their lives, the Church grows rapidly in many other places.
    I spent a useful twenty minutes watching U tubes of enormous rallies across Nigeria where literally millions and millions of people gave their lives to God. The same has happened in Indian cities. Even where the faith is severely persecuted in the cruelest ways, as in North Korea, the Church is miraculously, growing. Don’t believe the media and the atheistic Guardianista mob, the world as a whole is becoming more, not less, religious and the Christian faith is burgeoning in many countries.

    • Royinsouthwest

      I hope you are right. However, Nigeria is a country beset with massive problems. On Saturday Boko Haram attacked and killed 25 people loading firewood into vehicles. You might reply that Book Haram operates mainly in the Muslim dominated north of the country whereas Christianity is strong in the south. Even so, Nigeria has had a shocking reputation for corruption for many years now. If millions of people in Nigeria are giving their lives to God shouldn’t there be results such as victory of terrorism and an end to large scale corruption?

      • David

        Whilst I am aware of the parlous state of politics in Nigeria I am only commenting on conversions.
        It is simplistic I suggest to assume that large scale conversions will very soon result in Nigeria becoming a “clean”, safe place. Such societal level cultural changes take many generations. Did not Wesley’s success occur in parallel with epic 18th C corruption ?

  • IrishNeanderthal

    A few days ago, I came across a book (priced in shillings):

    AN ENQUIRY into the obligation of Christians to use means for the conversion of the Heathen

    by WILLIAM CAREY (1792)

    wherein, near the end, I found this paragraph:

    I do not mean by this, in any wise to confine it to one denomination of Christians. I wish with all my heart, that every one who loves our Lord Jesus Christ in sincerity, would in some way or other engage in it. But in the present divided state of Christendom, it would be more likely for good to be done by each denomination engaging separately in the work, than if they were to embark in it conjointly. There is room enough for us all, without interfering with each other; and if no unfriendly interference took place, each denomination would bear good will to the other, and wish, and pray for its success, considering it as upon the whole friendly to the great cause of true religion; but if all were intermingled, it is likely their private discords might throw a damp upon their spirits, and much retard their public usefulness.

    With this new year, may I recommend all good folk here to pay particular heed to the last sentence.

    • Chefofsinners

      Yep. Lots of ‘em are retarded. Good job you and me are around to set a good example.

      • Manfarang

        5 Every one that is proud in heart is an abomination to the Lord: though hand join in hand, he shall not be unpunished.

        • Chefofsinners

          6 Everyone that cannot spot a joke shall be an dullard, yea and an wet weekend shall he verily be unto his neighbour.

          • Manfarang

            Joke! That’s about as funny as terminal cancer.
            The weather where I am is very sunny and warm 82F.

            Blue skies smilin’ at me
            Nothin’ but blue skies do I see
            Blue days all of them gone
            Nothin’ but blue skies from now on

          • bluedog

            Relative humidity: 98%

          • Manfarang

            Today: UK humidity 76%, Bangkok 73%
            Britain is a wet and damp place. Here after a downpour the sun comes out.

          • Pubcrawler

            “Britain is a wet and damp place”

            Where I live is classified as ‘semi-arid’.

          • Manfarang

            Yorkshire Moors?

          • Pubcrawler

            No.

            And it’s ‘Yorkshire People of North African Heritage’.

          • Manfarang

            Eeh by gum. Most of them are of Viking heritage.

          • Pubcrawler

            Paronomasia not really your thing, is it?

  • Chefofsinners

    That face looks like Jack.

    • carl jacobs

      It’s much too cool to be Jack.

      • Chefofsinners

        And yet not cool at all…

  • dannybhoy

    Not bad for a Yank..

  • Manfarang