My Disinterested God

Friday 21st October

I was bought up in the Christian religion; Church of England, though my Uncle Pow (real name Albert) was a Congregationalist and we went to services there sometimes.  I attended Sunday School and Bible classes and was confirmed – and then…nothing. I was expecting some revelation, some Divine wisdom to descend and wrap its cloak around me.  But nothing, in fact a quite dim at first lightbulb started glowing in the dark recesses of my brain….”What if there were no God?”.  So I gradually became an Atheist, or maybe rather an Agnostic.  But there was always a doubt lurking in the back of my mind….”What if there was a God after all?”  But over-riding this was the conviction that people, here in the now, had to do something to make the World a better place, we couldn’t expect God to do it for us, and if it was all part of God’s Great plan, what the hell was he thinking about when he allowed the Holocaust to occur; and Cancer and other diseases. Some plan… even I could have planned things better.

I watched Life on Earth and all those Attenburgh Nature series, and read up on Darwin’s Theory of Evolution.  And still those doubts lurk.  Can all this beauty and splendour, the amazing creatures we see everywhere we look, flowers of incredible delicacy, even insects with their tiny limbs, could all of this be down to just Natural Selection, the best genes working their way through the generations and refining everything towards some sort of perfection.  And anyway?  Why Life?  Why Genes?  Why DNA?  Why did the first molecules develop into life itself?

And here on Earth I became more and more dissatisfied with all the Gods on offer; I didn’t recognise any kind of God I could accept, let alone worship.  And why Worship anyway?  And why expect any of these Gods to give a flying f… about humans, the cruellest and most destructive of creatures on the planet – surely an aberration in the natural order of things if ever there was one?  And still these lingering doubts.  I could never accept the idea that everything, Earth, Life, The Sun, Stars, The Universe itself and all Matter could simply be an accident.  Maybe we will find out one day.  But for now all we have are theories and doubts.

So, in absence of any sort of conclusion, I am prepared to believe that there may have been some sort of Creative Force behind the Universe, the Laws of Physics and Life itself, or the propensity for Atoms to combine to form, where possible, Life.  But maybe that God (for want of a better term) is actually quite disinterested in us; one tiny species on a minor planet in some far-flung region of everything.  So, maybe a creative force made the Universe possible and drives the attraction of Atoms which may form Life, but that is as far as it goes.  It is now up to us to make things work for the benefit of all living creatures on this, (so far) our only Planet.

My Beauty

Thursday 20th October

Kevin Rowland is maybe the most intense of Artists.  He formed Dexys Midnight Runners (named after a drug) in the early eighties, and changed their direction constantly, even after a number one hit with “Come On Eileen”, sacking and recruiting members as the muse took him.  Anyway he abandoned the band after a few years and drifted into drugs and obscurity. He wrote and sung the theme tune to a TV comedy “Brush Strokes” but couldn’t seem to get it together enough to make a comeback.

Then out of the blue in the mid-nineties he released “My Beauty”.  It was a covers record, but with many of the words changed and neurotic interspersions of snatches of him talking to himself, reassuring words that he was alright.  To make matters worse he insisted on dressing on the cover as a woman.  Or not exactly, no makeup or wig but stockings and a dress worn off the shoulders and hoiked up to show his knickers, and on his ‘comeback’ concerts he carried on wearing dresses.  Well, the music press had a field day and he was written off as just another loser.  But I bought the record anyway.  And it is brilliant, unconventional in places though the arrangements are pretty standard, it is Kevin’s voice that stands out and his emotional connection to the collection of what must be some of his favourite records is amazing.  One of the differences between ‘rock’ singing and classical is the emotional connection in the voice which can connect with the listener in powerful ways.  Examples such as Dylan and Cohen; reputedly bad singers but who somehow make the words seem all too real, and I for one prefer to listen to these emotionally connected but maybe not so note-perfect renditions.  Kevin sings with such feeling, especially on songs like ‘Labelled With Love’ where he changes the subject from alcohol to cocaine addiction, a subject he was all too familiar with.  I never tire of this album, and it can only be the voice which keeps me coming back for more.  Anyway the album failed miserably, but a few years later Kevin resurrected Dexys and has had some sort of a comeback.  His latest record which I haven’t bought yet is full of old Irish songs.  On one of the free samplers I got with Uncut is Kevin’s version of ‘Curragh of Kildare’, an old Irish love song – and again it is wonderful and full of emotion, and yes reassuring mumbling to himself – but I love it.


My Beauty


Wednesday 19th October

Life is full of choices, some we take, some we fail to see, some we regret and some in fact are good ones.  Yet in spite of often poor choices most of us sort of work out okay in the end.  When I was only 22 I got a job as Assistant Financial Controller at The Royal Scot Hotel, just opened in Kings Cross.  I had been wages clerk for a couple of years before that and blagged my way into this job.  For years I had made terrible choices, running away from home and school just before my ‘A’ levels and a possible University education, getting the first girl I met pregnant, not once – but twice (three times actually – but who’s counting).  And one or two better choices, homeless I claimed we had furniture meaning we got an unfurnished but condemned flat in a matter of weeks, carrying on working despite becoming a single parent at age 20, and still believing in a possible better future.  But then I made maybe my worst choice.  I soon discovered in this new job that my immediate boss, the actual Financial Controller was an idiot who swanned around in and out of meetings all day and left me to do all the Financial Reporting, in those days without even a calculator, let alone a computer.  Computer?  This was 1972 and computers were only seen on telly, huge room size machines with tape reels and they could barely add numbers up.  Anyway, as luck (or mendacity) would have it he, my immediate boss, ran away with a couple of thousand in cash out of the safe one weekend.  I just carried on, plodding away, and filling in Daily and Weekly reconciliation sheets by hand.  In a few days time Company Auditors arrived and started going through our paperwork with the finest of toothcombs.  I had many discussions with them and they left re-assured that I was honest and doing a reasonably good job.  I was so stupid that I didn’t even realise that I had to apply for the miscreant’s job, I just assumed they would get someone new in despite me doing almost everything since the Hotel opened.  Anyway I did get the job after being told I had to write and ask for it.

Then I received an unusual request; to attend a meeting in Edinburgh (head office) and flights booked.  I wasn’t at all sure what to expect, a dressing down, the sack or maybe a move to another Hotel.  In fact it was a job offer.  The Company was starting a new department to introduce Computers into their Operation.  They were looking for bright young individuals to be recruited, and I was one of them.  But…..the job would be based in Edinburgh (a foreign country to me), I was a single Dad, I had just got my son settled in a good nursery and had been promised a proper flat in a block in Hackney.  So, I turned them down.  Anyway who knew how Computers would end up dominating our lives back then?  But maybe it wasn’t such a bad choice, pretty soon after I met Joy, a receptionist at the Hotel I would have had to leave if I had taken the job.  We married and had a lovely daughter….but choices again, that didn’t last and after five years she left me.  I have made many bad choices over the years too, too many to recall (how long have you got).  But one choice I never veered from.  I read constantly, I used to draw but now I write almost every day and I listen to music whenever I can.  Every day we face choices and life is indeed a lottery; if anyone knew the future it probably wouldn’t happen like that. And looking back I don’t regret a single choice, all experience is good, without the rain we cannot appreciate sunshine, and if nothing else it gives me something to write about.


Tuesday 18th October

That was only the beginning, of course…..

June wrote to him that very night – she didn’t want to waste a moment.  She knew he liked her, but would he remember her when he got home, let alone when he got back to his University surrounded by all those clever college girls.  He had told her he had a few more months at Cambridge, and then he would be starting work in September.  June had been tapping the edge of the table with her beer mat when she saw his dad come over; he was hovering just behind his son’s chair.  She was wondering if she had a pen in her handbag to give him her address when he must have read her mind and handed her his fountain pen, but just before he gave it to her he jotted his own down on the nearest thing that came to hand, his own damp beer mat, his writing was neat and even though the ink had begun to seep into the beer she could just read it.  They quickly swapped, and looked into each other’s eyes for a second longer than necessary, then a hurried smile and he was gone.  But they had both wanted to stay in touch, thank goodness for beer mats she thought; that lucky old beer mat with his smudged name and address ‘Philip Wilkinson’, she liked the sound of that name and she kept it on her tiny dressing table for ages, only throwing it out when she moved in to their first house.

She thought she’d better get her skates on, so she wrote to him at once, as soon as she got in; a short but chatty little letter, carrying on where they had left off in the pub.  Not too friendly, not gushing or gooey, just chatty, reminding him how well they had got on and making sure he knew just what an impression he had made on her.  And he wrote back the next day, and the day after that too.  He came down to Ipswich twice before going back to Cambridge, and they got on like a house on fire.  He was really a good talker when he let his guard down, when he felt he was not expected to be clever or witty.  But he was actually very clever too, or so June thought.  He knew loads of stuff she had never heard of; he could recite whole poems, and knew all the dates of battles going back for centuries, and all about the Romans and that sort of stuff.  She had been asleep through most of her school years, bored by school and teachers and all those useless lessons, she couldn’t wait to get out and get a job.  She hadn’t really bothered to learn that much, well girls weren’t expected to succeed in those days were they?   They would have a husband to do that for them, it was just a matter of choosing the right one (and quickly too, you didn’t want to be left on the shelf).

*  * *

Phil had managed to see her twice in Ipswich before he returned to Cambridge for his final term.  He made some excuse or other to his parents; his mother certainly gave him a quizzical look, but he didn’t think the old man noticed if he was there or not.  He was quite embarrassed at what June must have thought when he insisted on getting the nine o’clock train back to Norwich.  Here he was a twenty-three year old man who had to be back home by ten in the evening.  But she didn’t seem to mind at all, she seemed to understand, so he didn’t feel pressured into explaining.  It wasn’t that there were any rules laid down, he could in theory come and go as he pleased, but he had never actually put the theory to the test.  And his parents always went to bed at ten on the dot, so he did too.  He never even sat up after they had gone to bed, he wouldn’t have dreamed of it, it would never have occurred to him.  This was their routine, they all went to bed at ten, and what would he have done downstairs on his own anyway, the wireless had been switched off, he would certainly not return to his quite neglected studies.  So he scurried home via train and taxi with the memory of Junes kisses reeling around in his brain.

He had kissed a few girls at parties and he’d had a sort of tentative girlfriend in the sixth-form, Mary, and they had certainly kissed.  Behind the bike sheds for about ten minutes every night before they both had to run to catch buses home in different directions.  She once let him slip his hand inside her blouse, but only over her bra, not under it.  He was so scared he didn’t dare move it, but just held it there, barely touching, but ecstatically feeling the rise and fall of her petite bosom as she breathed, their mouths clamped together like glue for all of ten minutes.  She dumped him for Grice Senior after a month of frantic kissing and nothing else.  Grice, who used to boast about his conquests in awful graphic detail, was now going out with Mary, Phil’s first and only girlfriend, the only girl he had ever kissed.  He dreaded going into school for a few days, he really didn’t want to hear from Grice’s ugly mouth the gory details of his success where Phil had so obviously failed, but actually Grice never said a word about Mary, and after a week she had dumped him in his turn for a boy from the Secondary Modern down the road.  ‘Good on you girl,’  he almost shouted, though late at night he still longed for and missed her kisses, and the hand he hadn’t washed for a week could still remember every embroidered stitch of her size 32B brassiere.

So, in his naivety he thought he knew how to kiss, but that was before he met June.  He now realised that with Mary they had simply put their lips together and pressed, he was probably too scared to actually do anything with his tongue; I mean what were you supposed to do with it?  Oh, but June taught him alright.  And this was wonderful, wonderful kissing, kissing like he had only dreamed about.  This was real grown-up kissing.  Both their tongues pushing and sliding over each other, then retreating and letting the other push harder; it was sensual and erotic and all those wonderful things he had always dreamed that sex would be like, and yet it wasn’t sex, they hadn’t done that at all, he hadn’t even tried to get his hands under her top, the kissing was enough in itself.  He knew now that he was in love with and had to have June, whatever it took.  Or if wasn’t love he didn’t care, it was wonderful and he wasn’t going to let her go.

*  * *

Ched Evans – the Fallout

Monday 17th October

Well, the jury has spoken, of course the jury has spoken twice – once five years ago when they found him guilty of rape, and now not guilty of rape.  So, what are we to think. To be perfectly honest, and of course from a male perspective, I don’t think that the case should have been brought in the first place.  Long before he was released and re-tried I couldn’t help but feel uneasy about the case.  Of course, none of us can possibly know exactly what went on in that hotel room, most of us lie or dissemble to protect our behaviour.  And let us be clear here, the behaviour of both Ched Evans and the girl, and the other footballer too was not good.  I am not defending any of them, but I am not sure that when I was that young and that inebriated I would have behaved any better.

I am more concerned with what this whole fiasco has done for sexual relations between the sexes.  Part of the problem I think comes with the difference between the legal definition of rape and the common perception of that term.  Of course before having sex with another person consent should be given, but in the heat and passion of the moment how many people actually ask their partner for permission to penetrate their body; it is done by body language and signals which are far harder to define and sometimes to actually discern.  I am also concerned with the prosecution’s argument that the girl in question was too drunk to have possibly consented.  What does that mean?  Was she unconscious?  Was she too drunk to have known what was happening?  Or is her, and incidentally Evan’s admitted, drunkenness an excuse for behaviour that the parties involved were later ashamed of.  And the common perception is, of course, that if a girl allows herself to get that drunk she is putting herself in a dangerous place and can hardly complain if things get out of hand.  And alcohol is a very common ingredient in dating and consensual sex, or what used to be called seduction; both parties using it as a possible excuse for agreeing earlier than they might otherwise have done to actually have sex.  I am more and more convinced that there should be a re-defining of the term rape, and possibly a new lesser offence of having sex without consent.  Lawyers would undoubtedly have a field day, but more and more these cases influence the common perception that rape without violence is not in fact rape, and that of course is dangerous for women who are raped.  The only good thing which may come out of all of this is that young footballers may in future be far more careful in their relations with both alcohol and women.  Also of course the two people involved have been through an awful ordeal which is still not over and may affect them for years to come.  It is also becoming more and more clear that both those accused of rape and those complaining must remain anonymous until a verdict of guilty is actually reached.

Young People Of Today

Sunday 16th October

How often we hear that refrain; actually I heard it when I was a young person of a different today, and down the years ever since.  And it is tempting when you see the baseball cap on back to front and the trousers at half-mast – but that is just fashion; I am sure we looked just as ludicrous in kaftans and beads or loons and tie-die tee-shirts.  I have just come back from visiting my six year Granddaughter.  We actually went to a School Halloween Disco held two weeks early and yes, there was plenty for an old curmudgeon to moan about; the awful disco music, the shop-bought fancy-dress costumes, the whole American nonsense of Halloween, the under 11 girls tottering around in high-heels, the goody bags of Haribo jelly sweets all the kids were eating….and so on.  But the over-riding impression i got was that these kids were having fun.  For them school was not a boring daily drudge to be got through but a pleasure, an all encompassing experience involving parents many times a term in the running of the school, a real community feeling.

And yes, they watch a diet of Disney Princesses and constant cartoons all day long, but unlike the pretty violent few cartoons we watched, these stories all seem to have a moral code, good deeds done and rewarding bravery and kindness.  Yes, these kids all have i-pads but they are full of creative puzzles and spelling tests and information about the world which our generation was hopelessly ignorant of. It is like having a constantly updated complete set of Encyclopedia Brittanica at your fingertips.  And the young teenagers I know are confident and rounded, they have far less prejudices than we had, and they are generally better educated than we ever were.  It is always tempting to look back to the past with rose-coloured glasses, and maybe every generation berates the one that follows theirs, but all things considered I don’t think we have too much to worry about out young people of today, except of course the mess we have made of things which they will have to clear up.

How Stupid Does He Look Now?

Saturday 15th October

There has just been published a ‘poll’ by senior Professors of Politics in the U.K. assessing the success or failure, in other words the ranking, of British post-war Prime Ministers. No surprise that Clement Atlee tops the poll, followed by Thatcher and Blair.  At the bottom we find in order of ‘failure’ Anthony Eden, Alec Douglas Hume and David Cameron.  Now of course these polls are subject to fashion and longer term History may judge them differently.  But it does show how quickly Cameron has fallen out of favour, it was only 18 month ago when he stood on the steps of Number 10 having won the first Majority Conservative Administration 23 years after John Major exceeded all expectation and won in 1992.  Mind you Cameron did it on a much lower percentage of the vote, thanks to UKIP and the SNP, taking millions of votes and one seat for the former and forty-nine for the latter – such is the irrationality of our first-past-the-post system.

Of course we had already had five years of Cameron in the ill-fated (for the LibDems) Coalition, and I along with many others groaned as the results came in and it became obvious that despite all the polls the Tories would win again.  They had been nasty enough for five years with Clegg and Company desperately hanging onto their coat-tails and trying to stop their worst excesses.  Little good did it do them.  We had had two referendums in those five years.  The first, a concession to the LibDems, on Proportional Representation, which failed miserably, in part because of indecision on the part of Labour and a distinctly uninterested electorate.  The second was far more dangerous.  Cameron agreed to the SNP, already a powerful force in the Scottish Parliament but yet to make a real breakthrough in Westminster elections, who wanted Independence.  It looked an easy win for the Union but as Election-day approached the polls narrowed and suddenly a chill went through England as the possibility of Scotland leaving loomed large.  It was largely down to Gordon Brown, a recently defeated and derided Prime Minister, to make the case for a much more devolved Scotland to remain.  Well, Cameron scraped home in the end, but in a strange way this only served to strengthen the SNP, who a year later made huge gains at Westminster, largely at Labour’s expense.

But in order to help him win the coming election and to try to shoot UKIP’s fox Cameron recklessly promised an in/out Referendum on our remaining in the EU.  Not only did he miss the fox but he blew open the hen-house doors.  His Project Fear, which had served him well a year earlier when he terrified Middle England at the prospect of a Labour/SNP coalition, came apart with every new intervention by Carney or Obama or Lagarde.  And despite many of these predictions which may still come home to roost in the years to come the electorate simply didn’t believe the Eton boys.  Well, we are all living now with the consequences; rising prices in the shops, business now worried that we will be out of the Single Market, the SNP demanding a second referendum, and M.P.s of all colours furious that Mrs. May thinks she can go it alone and negotiate terms with no scrutiny at all.

I thought in February when Cameron returned like Chamberlain from Munich waving a piece of paper with his ‘renegotiation’ amounting to the tiniest and colourless hill of beans you ever saw, that he looked incredibly stupid.  As if anyone would be in the slightest convinced by them, but he huffed and he puffed and in the end he blew all our houses down.  And how stupid does he look now?  Well, he isn’t even around for us to jeer at anymore; scarpered, tail between his legs, comfortable pension in his mitt and the after-dinner speaker circuit beckoning he looks very stupid.  But we are even more stupid in ever believing in the Millionaire Cabinet he assembled and the promises he made; how much was it he promised for the NHS, 50 million I believe – well, that ‘ain’t gonna happen now is it?


Friday 14th October

I am bombarded daily by Petitions, or requests to put my name to petitions.  Facebook is full of them, my fault I suppose for liking certain humanitarian or left-wing posts, and once I actually signed a Petition (can’t remember what it was now) and I get e-mails, again almost daily, to sign yet another Petition.  Time was when as an enthusiastic youth and a member of the Labour Party, petitions would be passed round at Constituency meetings.  It was almost impossible not to sign there and then in front of everyone, and in truth I probably supported most of them.  Not that that made a blind bit of difference.  I don’t think petitions hardly ever do. I wonder what happened to all those petitions I signed, reams and reams of paper must have been prepared and presented to someone in Government, possibly even to number 10 itself.  And we can all remember the photo’s and filmed reports of petitions being handed in to some lackey at that famous black door.  What happened to them then?  NOTHING.  A snigger maybe that only two hundred thousand had signed, or maybe slight amazement that over a million had, but in my experience Petitions have never achieved anything, least of all their object.  They may have made the signees feel a bit better, just as dropping sixpence into the charity box makes us feel we have done our bit.  But just as with giving to charity the need never seems to be alleviated by the giving, so petitions never (or almost never) achieve their objective (there is always something else to petition about).  They may sometimes make the recipients pause for breath but almost never do they actually do what is being asked.

And now in the internet age it is even easier to sign petitions, just a few clicks and you will be pestered forever more.  The mania for petitions has only been exacerbated by Cameron letting us know that any on-line petition which achieved one million signatures (or clicks) would be considered seriously and even (though I am not sure of the rules) be debated in Parliament.  And so we have petitions to save badgers being shot, and who can disagree with that, but as the smell of cordite drifts across West-country fields badgers are still being massacred.  Stop the War in Syria, of course we should – but the feeble cries of petitioners are drowned out by the sound of bombers taking off on yet further destructive missions.  And so we go on.  But useless as petitions may be, what other means do we have?  In a General Election our smiley-smiley Politicians will promise anything to get elected, and hope over experience we pray that this time we will be listened to.  But with the latest Brexit Referendum still ringing in th M.P.s ears I doubt they are willing to listen that much to what the troublesome electorate might want to say.  Unless and until we have a form of real democracy where people feel that their concerns are at least being heard if not even acted on we will just have to carry on trying to win support by signing petitions.

R – is for the Rolling Stones (but maybe it should be S – is for)

Thursday 13th October

The Stones are one of the few bands or Artists known simply by a shortened version of their names.  I have always been ambivalent about them.  When they first burst onto the scene in the early Sixties I was like a sponge, soaking up everything and all musical influences, the Stones didn’t seem that different from the Yardbirds or Spencer Davis, very Bluesey but with an edge.  But as the Sixties progressed and the Media tried to whip up some sort of competition and we were told you either had to love the Beatles or the Stones,  for me there was no choice – it was the Beatles. I still loved the Stones singles; Ruby Tuesday, Satisfaction, Mother’s Little Helper etc:, but their Notoriety often seemed just that, being outrageous for outrageousness sake, and it did help sell the records too.  But over the years I have bought a few Stones albums; Exile on Main Street, Sticky Fingers, Goats Head Soup – and Some Girls, all of which were excellent and a few others which weren’t.

And they keep on going on.  Every few years they have a massive World Tour, much advertised and very expensive.  I went to see them in the early 2000’s and I can truly say it was the worst concert I have ever been to.  Not because of the Stones themselves, even though they were well past their prime I am sure they were pretty good.  But it was at Twickenham Stadium and the acoustics were awful, there was a constant echo coming off the stands.  We were on the pitch and far from the stage – we could barely see the video screens even.  And we were surrounded by a crowd of drunken younger fans who were constantly falling over on us, spilling beer and shouting and standing on their chairs.  Not the Stones fault, except of course that the bigger the stadium the more revenue they rake in.  Anyway.  They make even fewer records either these days, but they are still ‘working’.  They are famous these days for being famous and for being The Rolling Stones.  And looking back nobody can deny the body of work they have recorded over the years, even if most of it was in the Sixties and Seventies.  Every so many years they release a new Greatest Hits Album which goes on to sell millions; I even bought Hot Licks a few years ago.  No-one ever knows if their last tour was indeed their last ever tour, which all adds to the mystery and the demand for tickets and the re-sale of the old albums.

But for my money The Beatles are still way better.  And as they broke up when they were still brilliant we never saw their sad decline (John Lennon will never grow old).  The Rolling Stones are all old and wizened now but in many ways the Stones are the best of the many Rolling Stones Tribute Bands around.

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Trump And Farage – So Similar

Tuesday 11th October

At first glance they couldn’t be more different, the brash aggressive American and the jovial Englishman but they are remarkably similar.  Politically they are both of course from the right, instinctively pro-business, pro privatisation (Farage once even promoted a completely privatised NHS) and for reducing taxes for the rich.  They both believe in trickle-down economics; reward the rich and they will reward everyone else, even if the evidence is that the rich simply get richer; reward Greed and the greedy get even greedier.  Donald Trump is an example, a multi-billionaire who pays no tax and is aggressive in his acquisition of even more…

They both paint themselves as non-politicians, even though both have dabbled in opinion forming and politics for years.  They say they are not part of the Establishment but Trump has hobnobbed with Presidents and Senators and lobbied intensively to get his Casino plans approved, while Farage was a stockbroker and has been an MEP for years, raking in a huge Salary and Allowances while very rarely constructively interacting with his fellow European Parliamentarians.  And they both state that they ‘Say it like it is”, which rather than meaning telling the truth is really being both Politically Incorrect and reverting to dog-whistle Politics and then denying they are in any way Racist.   In fact both of them, much like many Politicians, will lie whenever it is convenient.  They present themselves as ‘Ordinary People’ but Donald was the son of a Millionaire and Nigel has been very well-paid for years.  They are both ‘populists’ meaning that they will say anything to be popular and change their tune almost in mid-sentence.  And this is the crux of the whole issue, they are both incredibly arrogant and love the fame their differing degrees of notoriety bring them.  In fact they are really ‘in it’ not to make people’s lives better or even because they believe that their policies (what policies) will work, but as some sort of incredible ego-trip where they are worshipped by adoring hordes they are bound to disappoint sooner or later.

If you want to hear a Politician who is not in it for fame or fortune and who genuinely believes in helping people (even if some of their ideas seem outrageous) you need look no further than Jeremy Corbyn; he doesn’t brag, he doesn’t put down his opponents and he uses reasoned arguments.  Which means of course that he is branded a left-wing loony and an extremist and told by the media that he will never win.  He may not, but I would rather be led by a principled and honest person than an ego-driven liar who will say anything to get elected.