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Knowing me, knowing them …

With the return of Alan Partridge to our television screens thankfully providing a welcome tit-bit of light relief as the endless drip-feed of bizarre developments in the House of Commons over Brexit defies the last vestiges of both logic and satire, your correspondent has been finding it increasingly hard in recent months to summon the interest or indeed energy to compose his occasional opinion pieces.

After all, when the capacity of real-life current events to cause mirth and bemusement exceed that of those of us hired to titillate the public’s minds, one can be forgiven for wondering whether one’s talents might be more fruitfully turned to road-sweeping, gastric surgery or embarking upon a career as a sixty-plus 16 stone professional National Hunt jockey.

Nevertheless, as a public service, I invite Rust readers to follow the links here provided to firstly, Mr Partridge demonstrating to daytime viewers the way to used a train toilet without using your hands, as featured in the first episode of his new series This Time With Alan Partridge, courtesy of – YOUTUBE

And secondly, to the latest piece from my new favourite political scribe Tom Peck as appears today upon the website of – THE INDEPENDENT

Given that the fundamental contradiction of Western-style democracy remains that of pretending to pay lip-service to popular accountability whilst de facto ignoring both its basic principles and indeed the core instincts of the human condition, I have reached the point at which nothing surprises me anymore.

As our politicians continue their pastime of ‘playing the Westminster game’ they face the problem highlighted by the original Henry Ford in his pithy dismissal of governmental machinations (“History is bunk”).

Labouring under the weighty delusion that how things are will be how things remain, the Establishment is constantly struggling to keep abreast of the course of events and its ever-developing future because of the eternal truth that ‘controlling’ human society is as futile a process as King Canute sitting on the beach ordering the incoming tide to stop where it has reached.

Folklore and sad history demonstrate that the military is hamstrung by its instinctive practice of preparing to fight the next war by reviewing and then readying itself to fight the last one again in the future, only (hopefully) slightly better.

In the same manner – whether the topic is climate change and possible ecological disaster, waves of unexpected mass immigration, global financial meltdown or even a self-inflicted national referendum –  in addressing every new development our political lords and masters find it impossible to do anything but career around, bouncing off pin after pin like metal balls propelled around a bagatelle board, seeking all the while to ‘explain’ their unpredictable trajectories as all part of some rational ‘bigger plan’ underpinned by a logical, rational and justifiable common sense when in fact (as both they and we observers know all too well) it is nothing of the kind.

On the subject of Brexit I fear one can now safely put the proposition, without any fear of dissent or contradiction, that never in the field of human incompetence has so much time, effort and taxpayers’ money been expended upon so little by so many to such little effect.


About Simon Campion-Brown

A former lecturer in politics at Keele University, Simon now lives in Oxfordshire. Married with two children, in 2007 he decided to monitor the Westminster village via newspaper and television and has never looked back. More Posts