Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Water, water everywhere…

The United Kingdom must be the only country in the world where both drought and flood lead to drinking water shortages. The situation ranks with the shut-down of transport networks because of ‘leaves on the line’, or ‘the wrong type of snow’. Cranmer awaits notification of the Environment Agency that we are suffering ‘the wrong type of rain’. Or a declaration from a senior cleric of the Church of England that this is God’s judgement upon homosexuals / Mohammedans / government / Church / idolaters / those who build on flood plains.

Yet as it was in the days of Noah – they did eat, they drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage, until the day that Noah entered into the ark, and the flood came, and destroyed them all although the Lord promised Noah that things would never again be as bad as extermination of humanity through flood. If this story has any relevance today, it is an exhortation to righteousness and preparedness.

Noah was called to a lengthy period of preparation, and he was commissioned to build the Ark according to strict dimensions, even though there was no apparent water to float it. His mission involved ridicule, opposition, sacrificial effort, tenacity, and self-discipline. The Ark was a vessel of salvation. Noah never knew when the flood would come until a few days before the event, but he knew that it would come, and he was prepared.

David Cameron is also called to a lengthy period of preparation, and he was commissioned to formulate an election-winning strategy, even though there is no apparent water to float it. His mission involves ridicule, opposition, sacrificial effort, tenacity, and self-discipline. Her Majesty’s Loyal Opposition is the only hope the United Kingdom has. Mr Cameron does not know when the General Election will come, but he knows that it will come…

…so why is he refusing to respond to ‘events’? Why is he in Rwanda when his own constituents are homeless and distraught? Why is he not holding the Government to account? Why is he not speaking on behalf of the hundreds of thousands of people affected by this appalling weather? Why is he not weeping with those who weep, comforting the homeless, the distressed, and those with no insurance who have lost everything?

And Cranmer is not saying that the needs of Rwanda are any less than the needs of the United Kingdom; indeed, in very many respects they are a very great deal more. And neither is Cranmer insisting that Mr Cameron should be building drainage ditches in Witney rather than lavatories in Rwanda. But the primary task must be to appear credible as he prepares for government, and, once there, he can pour billions into whatever causes he wishes. Instead, he is in Rwanda, re-building a school and teaching children to play cricket, while the Prime Minister avoids the awkward questions and pontificates about ‘global warming’ or ‘changing weather patterns’. Mr Cameron gives the appearance of being more concerned with private pilgrimage and a collective rite of passage as he meditates on genocide and deprivation, but he insists that this is the ‘spirit of the Conservative Party’. And so he declares that all rich countries should end trade tariffs unilaterally because present trade rules are 'immoral' (is he aware of the CAP; he is proposing unilateral withdrawal?). He is more concerned with the ‘divisions of our world’ than divisions within his Party, because ‘there is no “domestic” and “foreign” any more’.

Compassionate Conservatism ought to begin at home.

Antennae, Mr Cameron, antennae…


Blogger istanbultory said...

Brilliant post your grace.
Well, Dave's devotion to PR stunts at the expense of political action is truly disturbing.
On the issue of the floods, I will note that Environment Secretary Hilary Benn has defended the Government's flood preparation, saying "nothing could have guarded against the amount of rainfall in recent days."
Drawn-down reservoirs, reforestation, deep ploughed setaside land, avoidance of farming methods using heavy machinery, well-designed and maintained enclosed and unenclosed washlands and not building on flood plains will all minimise fast and slow flooding.
Mr Benn seems to be none the wiser...

24 July 2007 at 11:06  
Blogger Man in a shed said...

I'm torn in two directions. Part wants to lay in to David Cameron over his stubbornness not to rethink his approach when events or the facts demand it, the other part is terrified that if we all let Dave know what we think he'll be so damaged that we get Gordon Brown for ten years.

But like the flood water - criticism will out.

So chalk down my approval for your post down your Grace.

24 July 2007 at 15:19  
Anonymous Observer said...

Your Grace Cameron is not a "Doer" he is a "Sayer". He is a product of an English education system which instills the art of using words but not the ability to build structures.

The Conservative Party retreated into its past to find a new incarnation of The Cliveden Set and even found an Astor connection. When it comes to facing the situation square on and taking action Cameron bolts...he is simply too immature to take responsibility.

In Blair the British found a Scotsman who seemed English, who was an Artful Dodger, who cheated and lied, twisted and turned, but evaded any conviction even though he spun himself into a twisted morass

Cameron is frightened. He is frightened of confrontation and speaks words but they are essentially weak. He is simply a petulant prince who wants to have servants make him look good.

People want leadership - they talk of General Dannant or Col Tim Collins, or Colonel Mendonca....what they see is how leadership is reviled by those who cannot...this is the age of the committee man and the marketing man.....somewhere out there may be a new leader capable of harnessing Promethean Fire, but it is not David Cameron.....delusions abound...but WYSIWYG.....he is what he appears - a Master of Bullsh*t and a Bluffer

24 July 2007 at 17:28  
Blogger Jomo said...

In an effort to make his party electable Mr Cameron has become irrelevant.

He cannot compete with Mr Brown’s record on aid and sympathy for Africa. Trying to do it while the country is in the midst of an emergency shows his lack of judgement as well as his inability to respond to events.

Hardly the qualities one would expect in a candidate for national leadership.

He dismisses the concerns of his party about his political direction with an arrogance more reminiscent of a Stuart king that a democratic leader. It seems ironic that he has already been out-manoeuvred by a Calvinist Scot. Mr Cameron’s leadership has become a tragedy. Who would have thought his opponent would have displayed the qualities of flexibility and pragmatism expected from a leader of England while he stands aimlessly in the sunshine of Africa.

24 July 2007 at 18:09  
Blogger A S Grey said...

Whilst I am in agreement with most suggestions about Mr Cameron, I am still very conscious of the fact that, had Mr Cameron postponed his visit to Rwanda, we would then have been criticising him for not considering global poverty important enough.

I guess politicians just can't win...

24 July 2007 at 18:56  
Anonymous Observer said...

we would then have been criticising him for not considering global poverty important enough.

I think your band of "We" is small indeed....break out of its clammy grip and come and meet real people !

24 July 2007 at 20:03  
Anonymous The recusant said...

Mr Jomo,

Whilst you make a valid point vis Cameron and his palpability, I wonder which particular trait of arrogance is peculiar to the Stuart lineage that is not present in the Tudor, Orange, Hanoverian or indeed Saxe-Coburg-Gotha(Saalfeld) (House of Windsor), apart from the misfortune of loosing.

24 July 2007 at 21:19  
Anonymous Voyager said...

which particular trait of arrogance is peculiar to the Stuart lineage

Oh you really should check on James I petulance; Charles I treachery that had him executed for treason; Charles II flirtation with Treaty of Breda; James II subversion of University College, Oxford et al

In short the Stuarts were stupid where the Tudors were clever

24 July 2007 at 22:29  
Blogger Jomo said...


At last we agree about something. After all James 1 and 6 was known as the "Wisest fool in Christendom."

Flash Gordon may be many things but he is no fool. Unhappily the more DC appears on the TV the more he fits the description.

As for the Hanovarians they could give us all lessons on survival

24 July 2007 at 23:20  
Anonymous Sir HM said...

Your Grace

You may not like this (you know full well what the Hitch is like). Indeed, you may bar me forever for it. But I've just got to take the risk because it's one of the funniest things I've seen in a long time.


24 July 2007 at 23:47  
Blogger Johnny Norfolk said...

Cammeron has blown it. He will just not listen. Going to Africa at this time shows a complete lack of any judgement. You could not trust him to be Prime Minister.

25 July 2007 at 08:21  
Blogger idle said...

An excellent post, yg.

I worry that the Boy's movements and utterances are planned well in advance and to stray from the grid is anathema. This means that antennae (even if Hilton and Cameron had any) would be switched off.

The lack of spontaneity and pragmatism of this opposition prevents it from looking like the HONEST alternative to a government characterised by evasion and mendacity.

25 July 2007 at 09:42  
Anonymous The Recusant said...

Thank you Mr Voyager for that excellent answer, and when I ask for examples of the stupidity exhibited by the Stuarts I'll remember it. However not withstanding the examples given, granted ChII could be stubborn, but his belief in the divine right was prevalent in all European royal houses and as an obviously educated man you know his show trial was a precursor to the those of Stalin in the 30’s. So bearing in mind that, if pressed, I too can quote examples of equal stupidity for the other royal houses, what in particular makes the Stuarts more arrogant than the others? If I were to ascribe characteristic traits of the Tudors it would be covetous greed, despotism and brutality, not cleverness (but I wouldn’t dare tell them that).

Interestingly enough the last Stewart, Henry Benedict Maria Clement Thomas Francis Xavier Stuart or Henry IX & I of England and Scotland to his friends (the Stewarts never renounced their claim to the throne). In life he was granted an annual pension of £4,000 by the Elector George II of Hanover, paid for by the English Parliament, This was granted after he lost all his fortune bribing the Bonapartist French armies to stop them from sacking Rome in 1798. When his sarcophagus was moved in 1938, it was paid for by King George VI, its restoration was completed at the expense of the late Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother. He now rests in the Basilica of St Peter under a fine monument by the master sculptor Antonio Canova along with his father and brother, not bad for the arrogant Stuarts.

25 July 2007 at 10:19  
Anonymous Voyager said...

granted ChII could be stubborn, but his belief in the divine right was prevalent in all European royal houses and as an obviously educated man you know his show trial was a precursor to the those of Stalin in the 30s

Charles II was restored to the Throne in 1660 it was his father was was executed.

The difference was that in Scotland Presbyterianism was a powerful force and James VI inflicted Laud's Prayer Book upon his increasingly Calvinist subjects whilst his English Catholic subjects thought to prepare him an incendiary surprise in the English Parliament.

Stalin's Show Trials under Andrei Vyshinsky as those under Roland Freisler in the Volksgerichtshof were of a different character from that og Charles I for he was accused of importing a foreign army to overthrow the Parliament of England....which is Treason...an offence for which any of that King's subjects would have been executed

Talking of Show Trials....perhaps elucidation of why Ribbentrop was prohibited at Nuremberg from raising matters such as the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact and Andrei Vyshinsky's role as Soviet Prosecutor drawing upon long experience of Show Trials in Moscow would be educational.......or why the former Head of MI5 Manningham-Buller had a father who was Attorney-General under Macmillan and had a meeting with Mac and LCJ Parker to discuss a sentence for George Blake pre-trial longer than any previously given out in an English Court.........and Parker had himself said that the Courts have a positive responsibility to be the handmaiden of administration rather than its governor

Blake was sentenced to 42 years......

A digression but an interesting one to see just how unexceptional the trial of Charles I really was despite revisionist history

25 July 2007 at 11:36  
Blogger C4' said...

The recent flooding is God's judgement of the British people for voting socialist and on the Nazis from New Labour along with the PC brigade.

25 July 2007 at 12:17  
Anonymous Observer said...

The recent flooding is God's judgement of the British people

That's why it only affected certain areas of England the bulk of which do not elect Labour MPs....go away and think some more !

25 July 2007 at 12:58  
Anonymous The Recusant said...

Mr Voyage, once again I am blinded by the breadth and depth of your knowledge and of course it was CHI not II who was tried by parliament, my typo, but really it was exceptional to put a King on trial. The perception being that a king is answerable only to God. This concept stemmed from the organic growth of the precept introduced by Pope Gregory the Great that no secular ruler or council can pass judgement on the Vicar of Christ. The battles between the secular and spiritual authorities in Europe led to secular monarchs adopting the same claim and it was generally accepted as they had big armies, lots of gold and equally sized egos.

Defeating a King in Battle was another matter all together, as happened to Harold and old crouch-back this just meant Gods favour had fallen on a new candidate for kingship. Indeed it was such an exceptional occurrence the precedent was only used again 140 yrs later in the French Revolution when it was judged legal the execute Louis because the English had done it to Charles previously. However once again it was a rubber-stamped outcome from a rigged jury as the decision to execute had been made beforehand.

You say that Charley fetching in a foreign army to English shores and setting them against Englishmen to recover his crown from a parliament that had previously given their oath of allegiance to said king is treasonable. How then would you describe the action of one Thomas Cranmer (1489 - 1556) and his response to the Prayer Book Rebellion or Western Rising in 1549 under Edward VI in response to the Act of Uniformity when he used German and Italian mercenaries to slaughter west country and Cornishmen.

1,300 died at Sampford Courtenay, 300 at Fenny Bridges, over 1000 were either shot or burned to death in Clyst St. Mary, 900 bound and gagged prisoners had their throats slit (in 10 minutes) on Clyst Heath, 2000 died the next day at the battle of Clyst Heath. In total over 5,500 Cornish and West Country men women and children lost their lives in the rebellion. Archbishop Thomas Cranmer issued further orders on behalf of the king with the support of the Lord Protector, the Duke of Somerset for the intensification and continuance of the onslaught. Under Sir Anthony Kingston, English and mercenary forces then moved throughout Devon and into Cornwall and executed or killed many people before the bloodshed finally ceased. Would this be treason in using an Army of foreign mercenaries (mainly protestant but surprisingly quite a few Catholics) to suppress and slaughter the people of the West. Mr Cranmer had blood o his hands well before he was executed by Mary (another bloody Tudor).

Come to think of it William of Oranges arrival on these shores with his soldiers would also be an act of treason as once again a Parliament after giving their sworn oath of allegiance to the king, chased him out of the country, it gets quite habit forming. What then makes one treason and one liberation?

Anyway none of this demonstrates why the Stuarts were particularly more arrogant than any other Royal House (I am not saying that they did not have there fair share of Arrogance, just no more than any other), I don’t think the case has been made.

25 July 2007 at 13:42  
Anonymous Voyager said...

but really it was exceptional to put a King on trial. The perception being that a king is answerable only to God.

Yes but remember The Reformation and Jean Calvin....The King was not God....he was de facto a constitutional Monarch but continued to believe he could overthrow Parliament and raise taxes without reference to Parliament

William of Orange was invited to England...he was the Stattholder and his wife was the daughter of James II....he was met at Torbay by John Churchill with an English Army which he put at the service of William

Parliament made William and Mary Joint-Monarch - William was nephew of James II and Mary was daughter of James II

The whole issue is simply that Parliament is not subservient to The King - that would be an obvious corollary of Protestant Soteriology which holds that the Individual is answerable to God directly and not to earthly princes as intermediaries.

That is why Protestantism is so different from Catholicism; the latter being the hierarchical principle of obedience to The Leader

25 July 2007 at 18:03  
Blogger Jomo said...

Mr Recusant

I am reluctant to re-enter such an erudite debate however:

The Stuart dynasty had a habit of ignoring the wishes of Parliament. Eventually C1 lost his head and J2/7 his crown. I am sure you will agree a fairly poor batting average.

Mr Cameron seems much less successful in retaining the loyalty of his party than Mr Brown. While one might expect Mr Brown to display some of the negative characteristics historically ascribed to the Scots, it seems Mr Cameron it much more willing to ignore the wishes of his supporters in Parliament despite the finest English education money can buy. Mr Brown has outplayed him on ever issue since his appointment.

It seems to me the end for Mr Cameron is inevitable.

25 July 2007 at 18:07  
Anonymous The recusant said...

Mr Voyager

Are you referring this Jean Calvin?:

The conduct of all citizens was examined and regulated by a consistory of 5 pastors and 12 lay elders elected by the council. The consistory had the right to visit every family annually and search its home; to summon any citizen before it; to excommunicate, which meant virtually automatic banishment from the city by the council; to force attendance at weekly sermons; to prohibit gambling, drunkenness, dancing, profane songs, and immodest dress; and to forbid all forms of the theatre. The colours of clothing, hair styles, and amounts of food permissible at the table were regulated. It was forbidden to name children after saints, and it was a criminal offence to speak ill of Calvin or the rest of the clergy. The press was severely censored, with writings judged to be immoral and books devoted to Catholicism or other false teaching forbidden. Punishment for first offences was usually a fine and for repetition of minor crimes, banishment. Fornication was punishable by exile, and adultery, blasphemy and idolatry by death. Education, which Calvin regarded as inseparable from religion, was very carefully regulated, and new schools were established. Charity was placed under municipal administration to eliminate begging (sounds familiar). Thus the whole life of Geneva was placed under a rigid discipline and a single Church from which no deviation was permitted. Enough said

I agree that William of Orange was invited to England; by a bunch of traitorous turn coats that never had any intention of honouring their oaths to their legal and true King.

But lets be candid the invitation was elicited by William because he believed that the English people would not react well to a foreign invader, so he understood himself to be an invader. For this reason he demanded in a letter to Rear-Admiral Arthur Herbert that the most eminent English Protestants first invite him in writing to invade. Only when James II's second wife, Mary of Modena, bore a son (James Francis Edward), who displaced William's wife to become first in the line of succession, thereby ensuring the continuation the Royal House of Stuart did the traitors act and send William the invitation. The letter informed William that if he were to land in England with an army, the signatories and their allies would rise up and support him. The Invitation also briefly rehashed the grievances against King James, claimed that the King's son was suppositious. So there you have the invitation in a nutshell, textbook soviet tactics, just 300 years too soon.

Now why did Parliament make William monarch, well because if they didn’t William threatened the scheming conspirators he would depart with his army and leave them to their richly deserved and just deserts that a returning Stuart King would undoubtedly exact from their conspiratorial back sides. For the life of me I cannot see what was glorious about this bunch of disreputable traitors, there is nothing admirable about their behaviour or laudable about their actions, that they succeeded in their sedition is all that can be said for them.

25 July 2007 at 21:33  
Anonymous The Recusant said...

Mr Jomo

I never said the Stewarts were politically astute or for that matter that they did not exhibit any arrogance, My Voyager is correct in that they did on occasion demonstrate the most appalling lack of judgement and I’m sure arrogance had its part. My point was that they had no more than any other or the royal houses. If anything I think they could be accused (in general) of a certain childish naivety rather than political acumen, this does seem to me to be more common in Catholicism than Protestantism which is rather hard nosed. I put the success of the industrial revolution to this Calvinistic inspired work ethic, while the southern Europeans were busy drinking wine and having siestas the hard working northern Protestant were busy making money. Of course my impression is open to challenge.

But you on the whole the Stuarts got their arses kicked again and again and again, at least they got the message finally.

Cameron won’t do, he won’t do at all and the sooner he goes the better. They missed the better man in Davies last time; I hope they get it right next time. It was reported that Tony Lit who lost the Ealing Southall by-election broadcast to the voters that it was Cameron’s policy to replace some existing bank holidays with Diwali and Ramadan to make them less Christian centred and more immigrant friendly. He has to go.

25 July 2007 at 21:56  
Blogger Jomo said...

Mr Recusant

I am not sure the Stuarts were as catholic as you claim despite deathbed and later conversions.These were probably influenced by C2 and J2/7's foreign travels. Just shows you the dangers of mixing with these europeans!

However, J1/6 settled to the role of supreme govenor very easily.

Equally, Ferdinand and Isabella, Columbus, Cortez and Pizarro and Don John of Austria to name a few didn't spend all their time drinking wine and sleeping. Not that I would ever support the invasion of another country.

I do agree with your views on Cameron. With the help of the BBC the Tories were conned into picking the wrong man.

25 July 2007 at 23:28  
Anonymous Voyager said...

With the exception of this one sentence your selected paragraph evoked thoughts of The Pope in Rome
writings judged to be immoral and books devoted to Catholicism or other false teaching forbidden

No it was James II who was the traitor and should have been executed not exiled - he did after all lose The Great Seal of England in The Thames.

The Stuarts were vain and stupid but they were in reality French having originated as Stewards (viz Stewart) to John de Balliol......it appears they lived in France - and married French or other Catholic wives....they treated England ratherwith a French mindset....and found themselves facing rejection

26 July 2007 at 06:34  
Anonymous The Recusant said...

Mr Jomo,

What can I say, they had their bad sheep but I think most historians will agree the Stuarts were Catholic, they may have attended masses in private (a bit like Blair) and sinned in public but Romans they were. As I highlighted above, even today the longest serving Cardinal ever in the Churches history was a Stewart, Henry IX.

I was being a little flippant with the north and south thing but I do think there is a grain of truth in it. To my mind the north has not produced artists of the calibre of Caravaggio or Bernini , try as I might a bowl of sunflowers don’t quite move me the same way the Pieter does.

Mr Voyager,

Far from imposing such a prescriptive arrangement on any community I would have though the Church of Rome would be accused of indulging in most or the above vices not imposing them. One thing we cannot be accused of though is not being up for a party surely.

James did lose The Great Seal didn’t he; well he suffered the disgrace any regiment does on losing its colours he was disbanded.

26 July 2007 at 09:46  
Anonymous Voyager said...

James did lose The Great Seal didn’t he; well he suffered the disgrace any regiment does on losing its colours he was disbanded.

It all comes down to the unsuitability of Richard Cromwell for high office even though Chancellor of Oxford University

26 July 2007 at 11:51  

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