The Aged P

…just toasting and ruminating….

23 January
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Never Expected To Say This But Cameron’s EU Speech Was Absolutely Spot On….

There is a time in politics as well as in all things when one must eat one’s words (or some of them) and give credit where it is due. David Cameron’s speech was a good one, carefully crafted to bring out some home truths without sneering at our European partners as a bunch of Johnny Foreigners smelling of garlic and trying to seduce our women and steal our silver. By offering a straightforward in/out referendum on the UK’s membership of the EU in 2017 on the basis of a negotiated repatriation of certain powers he made a bold, and honest, commitment. There are none of the familiar weasel word which politicians conventionally use when making public promises – “almost certainly”, “certain circumstances”, subject to these conditions”.

There are always voices saying “don’t ask the difficult questions.”
But it’s essential for Europe – and for Britain – that we do because there are three major challenges confronting us today.
First, the problems in the Eurozone are driving fundamental change in Europe.
Second, there is a crisis of European competitiveness, as other nations across the world soar ahead. And third, there is a gap between the EU and its citizens which has grown dramatically in recent years. And which represents a lack of democratic accountability and consent that is – yes – felt particularly acutely in Britain.

For once it was Cameron as Thatcher, not Cameron as Blair.

It‘s a canny move. It might well have for the moment shot the UKIP fox, which had been threatening to bite at Tory heels – though I suspect that puttting a bet on predicting Nigel Farage’s political demise would not be the wisest of moves.Indeed one could argue that Cameron’s offer has been forced on him by the impact of Farage And UKIP. However Dave has left Labour in complete disarray. As for the Liberal Democrats, who in 2007 were supporting a referendum, they are busily backpedalling, calling the idea unhelpful.

This must be sweet music to Tory ears – those champions of the “people” Clegg and Milliband boxing themselves into a corner and saying actually we, the great and the good, not the public, should decide these matters.

The fact that political has beens like Mandelson, Clarke and Heseltine are against a referendum is clearly a badge of honour considering that all three were once fervent advocates of joining the Euro. Add the French and President Obama to the mix and it must be drinks all round.

The only voice that matters in all this is the one that emanates from Berlin and Cameron must be pleased that Angela Merkel is not going negative on the idea of having a second look at the power relationship between the EU and member states.

Maybe, just maybe, Dave might have a bit of backbone after all……

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13 September
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A Lazy & Childish Piece Of Vacuous Fluff From Erika Johnsen About Europe At USA Website Hot Air? Surely Not…

A lazy and childish piece of work Erika. This sort of intellectually vacuous fluff might be commendable in a high school magazine but not in anything that wants to be taken seriously

Wow – you certainly wouldn’t call that a demonstration of nuance..

It’s a comment on a post at Hot Air by Erika Johnsen in which she uses a poll of Europeans published in the UK Guardian to show that many of them don’t think much of GOP Presidential candidate Mitt Romney (an opinion which, I believe, was until comparatively recently also shared by a great many US conservatives) She uses the results to show how Europeans are decadent and lily livered compared to Americans in general and Mitt Romney in particular.

What with their many debt crises and severe unemployment levels, coupled with their socialism and their general political foppishness — which is all just working out so well for them — the absence of the European layman’s endorsement is kind of a dagger to my heart. I think I may have to rethink my vote now. …Not. You’ll forgive me, Europe, if I prefer to work for an America that is a strong, robust, take-no-prisoners powerhouse of moral and economic righteousness, rather than just another impotent, piddling player on the international stage. Sorry I’m not sorry.

That’s fine, Erika – tell that to the Germans with their massive private sector, lower unemployment and export led prosperity…and not a Chinese loan in sight..

Foppishness – I bet that would go down well with those British soldiers with their tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan, helping you with your “war on terror” and their comrades who are still getting killed or maimed fighting alongside your troops.

It’s a shoddy piece of hackery, designed to gain applause from the Neanderthal wing of the lumpenproletariat – and if you read the bulk of the comments she certainly scores a hit with the zombies. But “journalism” it certainly isn’t.

It appears that Erika “The Gem” Johnsen has taken over Allahpundit’s old role of dumping on those pesky foreigners. The trouble is that although Allah’s knowledge of culture and politics outside the USA was shallow and stereotyped he did write with fluidity and wit. Miss Johnsen lacks his saving grace. She has tried to create a kind of perky pseudo Palin schtick, striving to sell herself as a sassy tough as nails chick as at ease working out at the gym as she is downing beers with the guys at the bar.

Epic fail – Her style is contrived and her humour is leaden.

Fact is she was almost certainly hired by the powers that be at Hot Air to pimp Mitt Romney as a ballsbreaking conservative iron man who is so tea party he doesn’t even have to acknowledge the tea party. Romneycare? Forget it – I am sure Erika would say that was some other guy called Romney. Indeed it wouldn’t surprise me if she produced a rail and claimed that it was actually split by Mitt in his early days of rural poverty working with Abe Lincoln….

Amusing really, if it wasn’t so sad for, until a few months ago , you would hardly find anything in the Hot Air posts or comments that was favourable to Romney. Now it has become the digital arm of the Romney campaign – which explains Erika Johnsen…

Come back, Tina Korbe – all is forgiven…….

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18 June
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Has Greece Finally Bent The Knee To Germany? Don’t Bet Your Euros On It….

The euro-mafia is already hailing the Greek election as a turning point, hoping that conservative New Democracy and their socialist rivals Pasok will form a coalition which will implement the austerity measures demanded by Germany. Their micawberish expectation that something will eventually “turn up” is not, however, shared by all observers..

Both parties, which have ruled Greece for 38 years, are widely blamed for a crisis that has taken the country to the brink of economic collapse. Between them they won only about 40 per cent of the vote. By contrast, parties that opposed the bail-out increased their share of the vote to over 46 per cent, with Syriza, the radical Leftist coalition that wants to discard the agreement, almost winning outright.

Has the Greek euro maiden been untied from the rails and carried away before the locomotive thunders down the track?

I think not.

Settle down, folks, for the longest running death scene since the days of Victorian melodrama….

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