Olympia

While awaiting a personal response from England’s new prime minister to my offer *to be her Minister of Defence* – in the service of enabling England to return to being the Great Power she used to be – I’ve continued to follow world affairs closely, including the recent Olympic Games.

Were I not desirous of becoming Minister of Defence I wouldn’t have bothered following the Olympic Games, for they are not really “games” or “sport”, in the way an Englishman understands it. Rather, the Olympic Games are a world war by other means which the world’s nations fight every four years. What with the huge involvement and funding by national governments, flag-waving, national anthems, and all of that, the Olympic games are, you might say, a giant proxy-war. To win in your particular sport, you therefore use any means necessary, whether illegal or immoral.

Despite this, the athletes do appear to try to behave properly to their opponents at the end of a contest or event. This, however, is just Public Relations – something lost on the unlettered masses who follow the Olympic Games. So, should an athlete – as did happen in one instance during the just-finished Games – not shake the hand of his opponent at the finish of a contest between them, he’s excoriated for not acting as a sportsman should, and sent home in disgrace, rather than feted for being true to himself. .

You may have gathered by now how trying it was for me to follow these just-finished Olympic Games. I felt I had to, though, in view of my aspirations to be England’s Minister of Defence. Hence I followed these Games as I might a war. I was, in this connection, happy to see that in terms of medals won, England was among the very top nations. I have every hope that, once England becomes again a Great Power – through the means I laid out in my letter to the new Prime Minister – England will also be the top medal-winner at future Olympic Games.

And not just future Olympic Games, but future Football World Cups, and future Rugby World Cups too. Given that international sport is now war by other means, it will more or less be necessary that England as the world’s leading Great Power, should permanently be champion of the world in football and rugby. And not to speak of permanently depriving Australia of the Ashes.

***

In the matter of cricket, I’ve been disturbed to learn that Englishmen playing weekend amateur cricket today, routinely engage in *verbal and physical violence*. It’s getting so bad, fighting is causing matches to be abandoned. I had thought only Americans behave like this.  But Englishmen? Fighting on the cricket field is like spitting in church. It bespeaks a hole – a gaping hole – in the core of today’s Englishman. Is it therefore any wonder why he voted the way he did in the recent referendum?

The despair of today’s Englishman arises from his no longer finding meaning in his life. He tries to compensate by becoming an imitation American. So he chews gum, spews profanities, and fights on the cricket field. But imitating someone never fills the gaping hole in a rotting core. Hence the Englishman is adrift, and England is adrift too – drifting off to become again the inconsequential European off-shore island she was before William the Conqueror.

Happily this can all change. But only if England’s new woman prime minister accepts what I said in my recent letter to her. What I said is eminently………how shall I say………doable? It needs only the resolve that the fathers, grandfathers, great-grandfathers, and great-great grandfathers of today’s Englishman showed when they sailed off on England’s civilising mission throughout the world.

***

I’ll conclude this posting – as I did the previous posting – with music, English music. There’s nothing like  English music – real English music – to begin filling the hole in a rotting English core. What music was more English than the music of Albert Ketelby. Whenever I listen to his “Bells Across the Meadows” I begin weeping, so much does it vibrate with an ineffable Englishness in the deepest layer of my being.

If more of today’s Englishmen would listen to Albert Ketelby’s music, they might, like me, weep. This will only help the Englishman’s ailing soul to begin healing. He’ll spit out his gum, return to speaking proper English, shake the hand of his opponent on the cricket field, and sail off again to show proudly English civilisation to the world………

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9 comments on “Olympia

  1. Giscard says:

    C’est un très bon blog. Je suis très impressionné.

  2. Richard says:

    It warms my heart to hear you speak so movingly of our English heritage, threatened as it so often is by the forces of international socialism, an aberration proved to be destructive of human progress, understandind, peace and betterment.

    Yet you seem to say that England’s history began in 1066 when it was Alfred the Great in the ninth and tenth centuries who laid the foundations for the kingdom, brought into being by his son Edgar. At this time also England became the centre of European culture and not a barbarian outpost as some would like to say. Devastated by the invaders from Europe before, at and after the Battle of Hastings, it was supplanted by an inferior, more violent culture, though even William retained the administrative systems, laws and customs inaugurated under the Anglo-Saxon kings. He could do no better.

    You must have been made aware of these facts during your time at Sandhurst and I am gravely concerned that you may, at the age of 121, be showing symptoms of my grandfather’s condition, and he is only just over half your age.

    Added to your loss of neurons that retain knowledge of the years before 1066, your neural pathways have become tangled enough to cause you to imagine that the United Kingdom plebiscite to leave the European Union is to be regretted rather than seen as the liberation that it is of the Island spirit that achieved so much and is showing clear signs of doing so again, freed from the shackles of the latest European invader, the cause of those examples of decline you so brilliantly draw attention to.

    Let us hope that medical science will find ways to restore your wonderful mental powers to full capacity, that is if the forces of international socialism do not destroy our medical profession and our health service first.

    • Jeremy says:

      You said, “……..you seem to say that England’s history began in 1066……..”.

      Did I say this?

      You also said, “…….it was Alfred the Great……..who laid the foundations for the kingdom, brought into being by his son Edgar………”

      I seem to remember that when at school – which, admittedly, was a long tine ago – I was told that Alfred the Great’s children were Edward the Elder, Æthelflæd, Ælfthryth, Æthelgifu, and Æthelweard. No Edgar there.

      Edgar, I also seem to remember being told, was the son of Edmund I. No Alfred the Great there.

      When, therefore, you spoke of my alleged …….loss of neurons that retain knowledge of the years before 1066………”, you may have been thinking more of your own neurons than of mine. Hence your expressed grave concern that I may, at the age of 121, be showing symptoms of your own grandfather’s condition, may be a concern better directed at yourself.

      Your speaking of Alfred the Great did put me in mind of the story about when hiding from the Danes, Alfred sought refuge in the home of a woman who asked him to keep watch on some cakes she was baking. So distracted were Alfred’s thoughts, he let the cakes burn, and the woman scolded him severely for this.

      That Alfred’s thoughts were distracted is understandable, for who knows what the Danes would have done to him had they caught him. After being chastised by the woman, and considering his plight, Alfred may well have asked himself, “What’s it all about, Alfie? Is it just for the moment we live?…….”

  3. Richard says:

    You are quite right, I should not have relied on my memory. Edgar was Alfred’s great-grandson. Put it down to the rashness of youth. Please forgive me for this – if only out of respect for my grandfather, who is slowly closing the gap between your respective ages. Let us hope his rate of closure does not suddenly increase or diminish in the near future.

    No, you did not say in so many words that England’s history began in 1066, but you told your readers of “…..the inconsequential European off-shore island she [England] was before William the Conqueror……”. England was neither inconsequential nor an Island. You may check this on Wikipedia, the free source of knowledge, sometimes inaccurate, available to all users of the internet, should you wish.

    About seven centuries after his reign Alfred was given the suffix “the Great”, the only English monarch so honoured. He was a great lawgiver, administrator, soldier and scholar as well as subduing the Viking invaders from Europe. Why do you mention only the burnt cakes legend? You must have a very good reason. I cannot believe you would descend to falsifying his image in order artificially to bolster an invalid case for England’s negligible status before the Norman Conquest.

    I have just heard someone whisper to me that last May marked the hundredth anniversary of his Uncle Edgar’s death in the Battle of Jutland. What were your feelings at the time when you heard of the terrible loss of life in that battle?

    • Jeremy says:

      You said, “……England was neither inconsequential nor an Island…….”

      The problem with a word like “inconsequential” is that it can mean different things to different people. What is “inconsequential” to you could be “consequential” to me. So, was England “inconsequential” before William the Conqueror? I say “yes”. You, on the other hand, may say “no”.

      I think, though, we can agree that England, in the course of gradually acquiring an empire post-William the Conqueror, became less and less “inconsequential”, to the point where the empire got so big, England became unquestionably “consequential”.

      From my hide-out on the Pacific Rain Coast, it appears that, judging by what’s happened in the few short weeks since the “leave” vote in the referendum, England is returning to being less “consequential”, and perhaps even nakedly “inconsequential”.

      Among what I’ve come across in the papers lately, are sentences like, “……investment plans are being cut back and the prospects for future growth are already deteriorating……”, and “…….Contracts are being put on hold all over the place and the panic in the City is so great that investors are not being allowed to withdraw their money from prestigious funds……..”, and “……The collapse of the pound has only begun, and is in danger of going well beyond what our trading competitiveness might require…….”.

      All of this would of course turn around were England’s new prime minister to accept the plan I laid out in my recent letter to her.

      On whether England was (or is) an island, I think we can agree she isn’t, literally. But, metaphorically? One might argue that, judging by the result of the referendum, she is in her thinking, insular.

      As to King Alfred, I, unlike you, don’t see him as relevant to today’s England, apart from his involvement in the story of the burnt cakes, which does contain a moral still relevant.

      If there is an English King of yore who is relevant to today’s England, it might be Aethelred the Unready – whose pernicious obtuseness and ignorance are replicated today in those leaders who persuaded Englishmen to vote “leave” in the referendum.

      King Alfred’s no longer being relevant to today’s England, may have been in the minds of those who – on New Year’s Eve 2007 and Christmas Eve 2008 – vandalised his statue in Wantage market place (in Oxfordshire) by cutting off its right arm and axe.

      The genesis of this vandalism may also lie in what you said about England and the Battle of Hastings: “……Devastated by the invaders from Europe before, at and after the Battle of Hastings, it was supplanted by an inferior, more violent culture…….”

      As to the Battle of Jutland, I didn’t think much of it at the time, since my attention was fully engaged in surviving the trenches………..

      • Richard says:

        In a lucid interval, my grandfather, who is just over half your age, mentioned that you were born or reared in Salisbury, England. I am unable to verify this except by asking you now. Were you born or reared in Salisbury, England?

        Alfred the Great renewed the fortifications of Old Sarum against the European Viking invaders. Had he not, then New Sarum, or Salisbury, England, may never have been founded. If, indeed, you were born or reared in Salisbury, England, I regard that as highly relevant to today’s England, as must all your other admirers. It follows that far from being inconsequential, Alfred the Great was a major force in shaping the modern world.

        It is only your own self-effacing modesty, that seeks to refute such inevitable a conclusion.

        “….’When I use a word,’ Humpty Dumpty said, in rather a scornful tone, ‘it means just what I choose it to mean—neither more nor less.’ ‘The question is,’ said Alice, ‘whether you can make words mean so many different things.’ ‘The question is,’ said Humpty Dumpty, ‘which is to be master—that’s all.’….”

        The Reverend Charles Dodgson was a mathematician. Mathematicians.are always saying things like, ” Let so-and-so mean so-and-so,” and, “Let so-and-so be so-and-so.” I expect that is why he put those words into Humpty Dumpty’s mouth. I did not know you were a mathematician in addition to all your other accomplishments.

        It concerns me that you have been persuaded by reports of England’s declining prospects since the plebiscite calling for the United Kingdom to leave the European Union, endorsed by the government of the United Kingdom. I shall read the reports of an improved circumstance for my country with renewed interest.

        Since you are a mathematician, please tell me how long will it take for my grandfather to attain three-quarters of your age, that is, if you both survive sufficiently long, which I am sure you will?

  4. Jeremy says:

    Were these times less exigent I might have the energy and time to dwell – as a diversion from my addressing England’s parlous circumstances – upon the speculations in your comment. Given, however, England’s current parlous circumstances – perhaps the most parlous since Dunkirk – I wish not to be diverted right now from doing all I can within the little time I have left on earth, to help save the Englishman from himself, and thereby to help save England.

    What is making matters even more parlous is the new prime minister being told by some self-serving and unscrupulous legal experts in her inner circle, that, courtesy of the referendum result, she already has the legal authority to formally apply for England’s departure from Europe – a formal application which, it appears, there would be no turning back from.

    It is a sad commentary on the legal profession that it has members who would stoop to telling the prime minister to do something they would know is illegal, for they would have to know it is only Parliament that can authorise the process to leave. Because the majority of parliamentarians appear to know on which side England’s bread is buttered (so to speak) it is unlikely that Parliament would give its consent.

    We, who have only the Englishman’s interests at heart, can only hope the new prime minister will not be stampeded into doing something seriously illegal. Knowing the sentiments of parliament, she really has no alternative to ordering another referendum, or asking Her Majesty the Queen to order a new general election (or both).

    Once this is completed, and the results tabulated, it remains only for the prime minister to implement the program I outlined in my recent letter to her. It will lead to an England once again ruling the waves, an England in which all Englishman find meaningful work, an England of which all Englishmen are proud, an England again feared and respected throughout the world……..

    • Richard says:

      I read in today’s issue of a publication of high repute that the European Central Bank is (ECB) “…. is close to exhausting its ammunition and appears increasingly powerless to do more under its legal mandate…..” that Mario Draghi, the ECB’s esteemed President called on the rest of the Euro Area, (affectionately known as the “Eurozone) to “…..act more decisively to promote growth……..

      Given the reliance Germany now places on its increasing sales to the UK, it is unsurprising that future prospects of trade between the two nations are not at all marred as Britain turns its eyes to a welcoming world. Pessimism is only for opponents of free trade, whose protectionism was discredited by the Corn Laws, and is yet pursued with all vigour by the European Union.

      It is understandable that your perspective is blurred by remembrance of the heady days of Empire, but I, and many of my contemporaries, bearing in mind that I am hardly a fifth of your age, and thus unlikely ever to catch you up, have no desire to see Britannia rule the waves despite the exuberance we are about to witness at the Last Night of the Proms, threatened as it is by the spoilsports who lost in the plebiscite above referred to. Our Prime Minister does well to heed the wisdom of the majority of the British electorate. As she considers whether she should advise Her Majesty to appont you her Secretary of State for Defence, she will no doubt take your comments into account.

      Government lawyers have a proud record of the neutrality all lawyers should observe when advising professionally. It is as well that there is sound
      legal authority for Her Majesty, on due advice, to exercise her prerogative to give effect to the will of the people, whom Members of Parliament are, after all, elected to represent.

      I am impressed by the accolade your blog has received from a former President of France, and that you are on Christian name terms.

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