18 Sep

NB for those who got here via my e-alert to this post, my remarks on the brilliant C4 drama, Help, come after these idiotic outpourings on Britain’s nuclear weapons.


Late yesterday a FB post plugging BBC History Extra began thus: Why did Britain need a nuclear capability? Several factors were important …

Oddly enough, “enforcing imperialism” was not among the answers served up in reply to its own question. As for the comments below the post, well, judge for yourself.

Nicholas Wride’s errors begin with that first word, ‘our’, and its confusion of the interests of a people with those of its rulers.

Disregarding the ‘slimier’ pejorative as telling us nothing beyond C.M. Läspä’s own prejudices, its author might ask himself how many countries Putin’s Russia and Kim’s North Korea have invaded. At a push the combined answer would appear to be two, Georgia and Ukraine, both on Russia’s doorstep and – among other provocations – seeking entry to an alliance premised on her ‘containment’.

Mr Läspä might then ask how many countries the rulers of the USA and UK have invaded, most of them thousands of miles away. He could usefully start here.


Moving on, I believe – on the strength of a quick peek at his FB output – that Nevada based Jase d’Annemarc was extracting the Michael when quoting one “Steven Toast” …

… though I do believe Rodney Stephens is for real.


Ronald Sapp might ask the question I already invited C.M. Läspä to consider, then get himself up to speed on the nature of Israel as a beachhead for imperialism in the middle east.

Mark James might consider offering a scintilla of evidence for his astonishing claim.


I take Alex Rhone’s Trojan ‘Hoarse’ as referring to the influx of Muslim immigrants fleeing the consequences of ‘our’ wars on the middle east. Does more reactionary garbage flow from the mouths of individuals – or corporate behemoths – when they are named after large rivers?

Given the low bar here, I kind of warm to Mark James. But his idea of Britain – or to be precise, its ruling class – as a spent force is dangerously wide of the mark.


And now, because I so desperately need it, for something different. It’s not often I agree with both the Guardian – “will leave you breathless with rage” – and The Independent – “heart-breaking” – but if you have access to Channel 4 and have not yet seen its drama feature, Help, do so. Today would be good.

Stephen Graham, deservedly securing role after spellbinding role in British television, is the forty-seven year old sufferer of early onset dementia. Jodie Comer, terrifying as the assassin for pay (and pleasure) in Killing Eve, proves herself not just a pretty (and extraordinarily mobile) face. As carer supporting her own impoverished family by working in a residential home – i.e. the sector at the frontline and massively shafted as Covid and lockdown changed the face of Britain – her power to convey extreme emotion is utterly compelling.

It doesn’t harm that the support is stellar, the script by Jack (This is England) Thorne.

And by the way, to Graun and Indie talk of the rage-inducing and heart-breaking, I’d add a third truth. Help is both those things but manages at the same time to be hugely affirmative.

Of what? Of love.


But light relief it ain’t. If that’s more what you had in mind, Gogglebox takes some beating with its hilariously non-PC forays into Britain’s living rooms. Remember Lisa, disgustedly shredding all those copious notes she’d been making along the way as the last Line of Duty drew to its bewilderingly dissatisfying close? Now we have such saucer-eyed but pithy responses to Vigil as “you can’t trust nobody on that fucking submarine!”  I love it.

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