Syria: The death of innocence, again.

In Syria we have a Western backed insurrection that has lead to atrocities that are now being carried out by the government of that country. It is despicable that a country or a government can turn their guns and bombs onto their own people but that is what is happening now in Syria. Originally this civil war began with protests, protests that swept across the Middle East during the Arab Spring of 2011. Many of those protests died down (or were clamped down heavily) or saw an end result like the overthrow of governments in Egypt and Libya. Now we have another Libya in Syria.

The West has to take some responsibility for the situation we now have as the United States, the UK and other countries such as France have armed, funded and backed the opposition forces that are now at civil war with their government and military in Syria and as a direct result we have the Syrian president and military committing atrocities in it’s own cities against it’s own people, against the innocent civilians and people in the street who aren’t supporting one side or another, they just want to earn a crust and kiss their kids good night without fear of helicopter gunship attacks or bomb blasts.

So what can be done about this?

It’s a tough one. Clearly Assad’s Government is a brutal one. As usual it’s the innocent that are suffering in a conflict that they have neither started, support or want. The regime in Syria is now showing its true colours, it is acting in a despicable and cruel manner, women and kids are being killed. We might be wrong to have interfered but we cannot sit back, knowing we encouraged the uprising, and do nothing especially when we, the West, have contributed to turn protests into civil war. We did nothing when the same happened in Iran and that died away. A lot of people died protesting in Iran, the awful Iranian regime stood, and life went on. The brutal killing stopped! The West has to put pressure on Syria’s leadership, we have to encourage President Assad to stand down, we have to encourage a peaceful transition of power to a government for all and encourage democracy. Why? Because that’s our responsibility as agent provocateurs in this whole affair.

Peace, freedom and democracy will come at a price in Syria now though. The touch paper has been lit. The war has begun. The opposition are being armed by us, the Syrian government is sending in troops and heavy artillery to fight back. The region is getting worried and Syria is telling the region, we’ll use chemical weapons if you interfere. The Arab League is about as useful as the United Nations, they shuffle papers and call for this and that, but they refuse to stand united and actually contribute anything that might help such as sanctions or soldiers. I suppose they are on the doorstep and have a lot to lose if Assad fires poison gas at all of his neighbours, ultimately no one in the Middle East wants to take responsibility for accelerating the issue. I suppose you can’t blame them.

But we have to take responsibility, I say we I mean the government of Britain lead by David Cameron and the government of the United States lead by Barrack Obama, for helping create this situation and together we also have to work to get a speedy and peaceful conclusion that sees as little death and bloodshed as possible.

I fear that won’t happen though, this matter will drag on and on and thousands will die and again America and Britain will be culpable in another Middle East bloodbath. We seem to like to be involved, after helping to cause the war we should really be ready to stand by it and offer planes, bombs, soldiers and warships and end this silliness in a week or two. But we won’t. The powers that be want the moral high ground of ‘not getting involved’ as well as shouting about how the ‘Syrians have called and fought for freedom and done it all by themselves’ hoping above hope that history judges it as a revolution and not a staged coup just to take out another of the anti-Zionist regimes in the region. Cus let’s face it, if we aint grabbing oil we are protecting Israel, that’s all we care about in the region.

I don’t want this blog to appear too negative, just calling it like I see it. Clearly Assad and his regime are terrible bastards who will stop at nothing to cling on to power, but we can’t kid ourselves that its not a war that will be paid for in lives and blood by innocence (again) and the people making it all happen will walk away and make sure the spin doctors make it look like what ever the hell they want it too.

I hope it all ends soon, with no more blood shed and finally a lasting and prosperous peace for all Syrians.

Peace!

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Meeting New People.

It could easily be one of the craziest and strange things I’ve ever done (I’ll check the list and confirm that!) Agree to meet a man who essentially from my point of view exists online, ‘a man from the internet.’ Of course every single man or woman on the internet is a real person (apart from the spam and spam bots who just want you to click a link to hijack your twitter feed) I often forget this, and have certainly started to regret all of the bile and cursing that I’ve submit to various forums and comment feeds over the years, especially now I’ve met ‘a man from the internet’ and he was actually made of flesh and blood and walked and talked like I do. Although some people are so stupid they deserve a good roasting online.

A quick lunchtime meeting turned into over an hour, it was fortunate that the powers that be at work had gone home ill, and the people left at work were kind enough not to care (although they had begun to worry that I’d been kidnapped and raped, but still they never sent out the search party, cheers!)

So at 2 o’clock on a rainy afternoon I make my way down to the car park in Morrisons, Bilston to meet up with a guy who could be one of three things: A normal guy, a complete moron, or a serial killer (this is part of the reason I agree to meet in such a public and open place! You can never be too careful.) Fortunately Docdenbow was normal. I wasn’t too sure who I should be looking for but a lone figure standing, fag in hand, next to a bush miles away from anyone else appeared to be the individual I should head towards.

Meeting someone who has similar interests to you is always a pleasant meeting of minds and I found Docdenbow to be a really nice and interesting guy. The meeting made me realise I’m not the only normal person who is doing this blogging and writing lark and I shouldn’t be too bothered about it. The meeting gave me a lift from a writing perspective as recently I’ve been having thoughts of stopping and doing something else with my spare time. And of course meeting and old Bilstonite who was returning to the manor for a day or two was cool. Nice to see someone who has broken free from the town I call home and set up a better life for them in another country (Well, Wales.) Bilston aint always a bad place but in recent years it’s only ever featured in the newspapers and on TV for the violent gun and knife crime and the senseless loss of life those crimes have reaped. I sometimes wish I could escape to another place and start all over again. But I can’t, Bilston and the Black Country is in my blood (It’s a bit like Hepatitis in that respect). Meeting Docdenbow made that clear to me too, you can take the man out of Bilston but you can’t take the Bilston out of the man. I’m sure I’ll see him again soon for a pint rather than a simple chat in a car park.

Overall though, I now know that every username on the web has a real person behind it. I really should be nicer to you all!

Peace!

Rich people are hiding £13 trillion in off shore, tax free accounts.

And so we hear a report in todays news that the super-rich are hiding away all of their millions and billions, and is it any surprise? Of course not. The super rich are made up of a lot of nice people who earned it with inventions and patents and hard work and good investments but its also made up of the slimy, cunty, wanky bankers and investors who use their knowledge to protect their almost ill gotten gains from the likes of mister tax man. They gamble with working class and middle class money and get rich and when it goes tits up they run away and hide knowing the money they made in the good times is still safe, off-shore, missing, forever, theirs. They ignore the holes they dig metaphorically and let the rest of us take up the slack. The working class and middle class idiots who where stupid enough to save and invest with them pay the price for their misfortune. They are still comfortable and rich, we are all fucked, and yet they still look down on us and wonder why surfs like us complain about being poor, having nowt and wanting just a few pennies more.

News reports today suggest that £13 trillion (that’s £13,000,000,000,000.00) is hidden offshore, tax free, around the world by the global elite of wealthy bastards who can somehow just hide their cash in an offshore bank account. It’s a global figure so comparing it to the UK is silly, considering it is more than our annual GDP and then some. They save more offshore tax free that we generate in a year as the seventh biggest economy on Earth!

How much do you cost? I know I cost very little as I have no claims on social funds, I have very little claim on the NHS as I haven’t been ill in the last year and when I have been ill before that I’ve had to pay for the drugs to make me better at an extortionate and profitable (for the chemist or drugs company) rate. I don’t own a car but I do work and pay taxes, and I therefore pay taxes on everything else I then spend my already taxed cash on. Housing isn’t free, and gas, water and electric is silly money considering the networks are already built and only needs maintaining.

Take this though as an example of what we are missing out on in taxation on these rich assholes and the reality of national expenditure: In 2008-09 the cost of the NHS was £100bn. So let’s add another 10% for the intervening years and give a reasonable cost of the health service today (2012) at £110bn a year. The £13tn held offshore would keep the NHS running at today’s costs for 118 years, remove 25% of it’s value to allow for cost increases over that time (inflation) and it would pay for the NHS for only 88.5 years (or a decent lifetime of a person).

Still reading? Good. Are you as sick as I am, I fucking hope so!

If we could take all of the wealth that exists in the world today and convert it into a single currency such as the pound or the dollar, we’d have a net value of all money (including all taxes collected by countries, all wealth owned by people, all cash hidden offshore) that would be immense and certainly too high to visualise.

Then if we took all of the physical cash that exists (coins and notes) around the world and converted it into the same dollar or pound currency, we’d have barely enough actual cash to make a tiny dent in the “real” wealth. Most of the wealth is just numbers on computers or numbers on documents and doesn’t exist.

Humans invented cash and economies and wealth and savings and banks and everything else. If we all died tomorrow a pile of pound coins or a stack of fifty pound notes would offer very little to every other life form on the planet. None of it has any real value. And it makes me wonder, if we invented it, and then hoarded it, and then left people and countries to struggle because they didn’t have any of it, surely we can press the reset button and start again or come up with a better system in its place.

And if we can’t do that, maybe we should make these rich assholes hiding so much of it declare it and pay the relevant chunk of it in taxes.

Just a thought.

Peace!

The Longest Blog I’ve Ever Had, The Most Successful & It’s thanks To You Guys.

Tonight I have hit a blogging milestone, 25,000 hits. I’d like to think that I’ve achieved this through the intelligent writing, the well placed keywords and titles, the loyalty of my hundreds of fans and the shrewd marketing of my blog. But it isn’t anything to do with anything like that. An artificial injection of views (17,000 to be more precise) fell into my lap last year, but I’ve spoken enough about (and milked) that fact, so I won’t again.

So personally I’ve achieved about 8,000 of those hits all by myself. I’ve written over 130 posts and have a steady following of around 33 people. Not bad for an idiot such as myself.

I’ve been online blogging since about 2002 and in that time I’ve had a couple of WordPress blogs, a blogger blog and a bravenet blog and all have been enjoyable. I’ve been writing and blogging constantly online for nearly ten years but sadly all of my previous efforts have been lost, deleted unsaved. You see I have often found that blogs have a life span for me and when I get sick of them, bye, bye! They are erased for all time. I don’t save the copy, I let it go and start again with a clean slate.

But currently this blog here is different. You see it actually has a readership, a small group of you but still, readers. I’ve never before had that. It also gets the odd like and comment too. Some of my posts have even been known to be reblogged by other writers from time to time (that is very flattering, so thank you!) It’s been amazing. It’s these simple facts, I think, that has made me come to love this blog. It might not have a theme and it might seem a bit self indulgent or even whiny at times, but I always write about what’s on my mind and even force out stuff for you guys when I’m not really in the mood, just to keep the place alive and cobweb free!

Yes I can honestly say that this has been the most fun (blogging) and the best blog that I’ve ever had, and long may it continue.

Thank you all for reading and commenting.

Peace!

The Weather.

I’m a stranger around WordPress these days. I haven’t had any ideas or inspiration to write anything and nothing has caught my eye. Well I say nothing. Plenty of things catch my eye but where I used to say to myself, ‘That’ll make a great blog’ I now simply think, ‘I wish I could be arsed to write a blog about that.’

I dunno where the enjoyment has gone. I think I might have made it more of a chore than it needed to be and so lost interest. I mean I already have a full time job, I don’t need another one.

But in recent weeks I’ve been feeling fed up. I’m sick to death of the weather. All of the weeks and weeks and even months of work I’ve put into the garden has almost been wasted as all of the vegetables and plants that I’ve put in are simply rotting in the ground because it’s too damn wet all of the time.

I’ve also found myself obsessing about things that I shouldn’t. Checking the windows, doors and taps twenty times before I leave the house, checking the dog is OK, checking I have my keys another twenty times, all in all the OCD has to stop. So I’m going to force it to stop.

Yes my life is as exciting as they come at the moment…

I’ll try and get exercised about something soon and write about it. But until next time, take it easy.

Peace!

PS – At least the last of the hosepipe bans has been lifted this week. It only took weeks of torrential rain!

Boohoohoo! People have real problems Jay, so shut up whining!!

I have recently been thinking a lot about the past and old friends. Friends I haven’t seen for a long time but am able to still stay linked in with via the internet, mostly on Facebook. I sometimes forget the amount of time that has passed and how we’ve all grown up and drifted apart to make our own way in the world. But I’ve also noticed the lack of communication or contact. The texts that aren’t replied too and eventually aren’t sent at all (what’s the point of texting when you almost expect no reply as you hit send?) Comments on threads that are ignored. My ability these days to end a conversation on Facebook simply by commenting truly is amazing. I was thinking of getting DNA tested because I’m sure I should be attending Charles Xavier’s School for Socially Awkward Gifted Mutants. Not that I’m acting silly when drunk, often I’m just saying ‘Hi!’

I know we all grow up and have less and less spare time and more and more responsibilities, but the distance that I feel between a lot of people whom I’ve known, been friends with and cared about for so many years can sometimes be overwhelming. I suppose I could make more of an effort but then that is a two way argument, then I think I could knock on doors and phone people up and I don’t but again it’s a two way argument, my door aint rapping and my phone aint ringing.

I am of course being a bit of a dick because it’s far too easy (and childish) to say “They aint called me so I aint calling them’ because if both sides think like that you get an awful stalemate that’ll never get resolved. And of course sitting around just wondering, “what the hell have I said or done to offend someone?’ can be self defeating too because I’ve probably not done anything. But if I have I’d love to be able to say sorry or make amends or just explain that nothing was meant or intended.

Maybe I’m over-thinking the fact that I am a very lazy and bad friend and other people cannot be arsed keeping in touch with me.

OK, feeling sorry for myself rant over, look on the positives, I’ve still got one or two good, close mates, good mates from old jobs and a good missus and family. I suppose I shouldn’t fucking complain… but I am.

Peace!

PS – Not forgetting the many nice people I’ve got to know a little through WordPress, Twitter, Youtube and my many writing adventures. 🙂