LETTERS FROM LONDON
REASONS TO BE CHEERFUL
31 March 2018
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Living the Dream

It was the first anniversary of Article 50, the 29th of March if you slept through it,
or were you one of those rabid Brexiteers dragging out WWll bunting, singing
‘we’ll meet again’ and devouring yummy spam from the US – no problem there.
Simply there is no escape. The media will drive us into a collective coma or
wishing for one until the issue with Ireland is resolvable – you know – that one.
The unresolvable one.

According to a YouGov poll for Simple Politics, 68% of people are not confident
they know what’s happening with Brexit, 85% are not totally sure about the term
‘customs union’, and 80% of those surveyed would not be entirely confident with
the term ‘single market’. 73% of 18-24s agreeing with that statement. “But the
bus said…”

The Evening Standard reminds us that we will finally be able to ‘take back
control’. Joking. We already have it – if those sad obsessive Brexiteers ever
bothered to do any research. “But we’re a democracy so we don’t have to. The
people have spoken.”

A few reminders: cars…the safety of our meds…regulation of our banks…ad
inf… And if Brexiteer prevail, we will have no ‘control’ – ie; a say as to what we
do, as we will have no elected British minister or MEP to represent in rule-
making. Oh oops. No officials who draft the rules or judges who judge. A voice
equals control. Getit? No influence over free movement, border control, foreign
criminals, false marriages and any changes. World events? Won’t affect us will
they?

And democracy? Oh really. Just to put things into prospective, the Conservative
perspective: cyber manipulation, right-wing media, billionaire tycoons,
corporations with those vested interests, cash changing hands and of course
over 50% of newspapers sold in the UK are owned by two billionaires - Murdoch
and Harmsworth. And the UK lobbying industry? Oh that is worth a staggering
£2bn with 4,000 people employed. Think about it: 4,000 blackmailing, arm
twisting, threatening, ‘gift-giving’ and that’s all we know about.

And oh dear, lest we forget when the 2017 General Election resulted in no
majority for any party, the Conservatives passed a motion allowing themselves to
legislate without consulting parliament. Clearly we are the impeccable, perfected
model of democracy.

Enough is Enough

And considering that “enough is enough” - more reason to lose the will to live.
What a mess. And all that “Enough is Enough!” hysteria shouted out by
The
Daily Mail,
with regards to the anti-Semitism within the Labour Party. ‘Enough is
Enough!” is enough as it is specifically exploited by the right with the local
elections in May. Just saying…just saying… However, just saying seriously
Labour seriously has to sort this asap. Holocaust deniers in their midst? Insane.
Stalin didn’t finish the job? Indeed. Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn claimed the true
number of Stalin’s victims might have been as high as 60 million. Not enough
then? This is not looking good.

And the Conservatives? They are quite blatant about their prejudices…from
Boris to  Zac Goldsmith – an endless list really. Best not to quote all those Tories
– too offensive. Due to the anti-Corbyn bias the media ignores the claims of
“’endemic racism’ in the Conservative Party”. Eddie Izzard for PM. EI vs Jacob
Rees-Mog. Oh please. Wouldn’t that be just - delightful.

A Shadow of Your Former Self

So if you ever suffer from loss of memory or want to write your autobiography –
FB is the place to be. You know Facebook knows everything about you.
Everything. No surprise there, but when you actually really stop checking it
every five minutes, you might want to take a break. All right. Not for long as it is
clearly an addiction and you are already worried about withdrawal symptoms:
panic attacks, shaking, sweating, crying uncontrollably – for starters.

Ready for a reminder of your Orwellian world? Hundreds of text messages and
phone calls you have ever made on your mobile. All this time you have been
chatting about the evils of the government, your animosity for all those fanatical
Brexiteers, if you should stop to get milk…but also the amount of time you spent
chatting about that take-away curry. Clue: time spent. And why exactly? They
have been gathering and sharing – and not with you obviously – every detail of
your daily life. Daily life.

Curiously – or is it ironically – or both – FB had a master plan last year to
predict your futures. Clue: In a new computer system, every time you left your
flat/house to go to a pub, restaurant, airport, train station - it would be stored and
analysed for future predictions – in a massive database. So simply: they would
know where you are, where you are going, when you get there and how long
you stay there. And you know that “things of interest to the user” will give you
the film times you didn’t want and coupons.

Synced with Messenger only adds to the creepiness. Just in the event that you
missed it, they have phone numbers of people who are Facebook-free. Come on
now: “Yikes”! A recent survey found that 60% of people did not know that FB
owns Instagram. Facebook and Instagram use the same advertising data tool.
Thus, Facebook advertising is Instagram advertising. Facebook knows you
better than you do. Facebook insists – well, it would wouldn’t it? – it has never –
no never! – shared the data with third parties. Hmm. And why does it covertly
store your dog’s name then? Oh. And the days you walk it – and the amount of
time and the how often you pick up after it and how many treats it gets and if it
knows any tricks and… and… and…

And…The US State Department wants people who are applying for a visa to
enter the country to hand over all their social media usernames as well as past
phone numbers and email addresses. I suppose you would have to go to
Facebook for that information. How convenient.

No worries (ha), the department reassures that it would use the information “for
identity resolution and vetting purposes.” Under the proposal, visa applicants
would be required to provide what they are calling - “identifiers” they have used
on social media platforms in the previous five years. Hmm. But we know they
already have all your information stored in Utah. Hmmm. Shadow profiling your
friends and they will never know, will they? The solution? Don’t go and really,
why would you? Oh right. Las Vegas. Now there’s a valid reason….

Open Secret

More interference, undermining, duplicity, covert operations if FB isn’t enough.
The Canary reported January 2017 that “Al Jazeera‘s undercover sting
operation on key members of the Israel lobby in Britain revealed a £1,000,000
plot by the Israeli government to undermine Labour Party leader Jeremy
Corbyn…over several months in 2016.” Really? Really.

Best to quote here: “…an undercover reporter becoming a trusted confidant of
Israeli diplomat Shai Masot. The reporter filmed key conversations among Masot
and British political allies over the summer, revealing a network of pro-Israel
organisations committed to ‘taking down’ UK politicians who attempted to defend
Palestinian rights.”

“Masot complained that, under Corbyn, the Labour Party had been harder to
influence – and therefore the establishment of seemingly independent pro-Israel
groups within the Labour Party was required to undermine the leadership. This
conversation took place at the Labour Party conference in 2016, shortly after
the unsuccessful Labour coup.” Gosh.

Nicholas Soames, Conservative MP and grandson of Winston Churchill, said:
“This ranks as the equivalent of Soviet intelligence in what they are doing to
suborn democracy and interfere in due process.” Goodness me. And the
government response? Oh as if you didn’t know.

Ghost of a Chance

Meanwhile in the land of princes and princesses, Prince Harry and ‘princess’
Meghan can expect a surprise guest at their wedding. And no, forget fairy tales
no matter how many times MM references them. It’s Princess Diana. Yes,
according to twin psychics she wouldn't miss the royal wedding "for the world".
All right. The psychic twins, Terry and Linda Jamison told the
Daily Star, as you
do, that Diana told them: "I will most definitely be present for Harry and
Meghan's wedding.”

"I was also there for William and Kate's wedding. It will be beautiful, like my own
ceremony with a horse and carriage. I am around them all more than they
realise." Doing what exactly? Clearly not advising either Ex-W or MM. We are all
(so) bored with Ex-W’s hair aren’t we and MM instructing us on how to be
‘happy’ Americans?

Another one of those MM interviews has surfaced – they do seem endless. In
this one she discusses her calligraphy abilities. Oh let her speak for herself here
as she tried to make ends meet as a struggling actress – and yes, I know, we
have read about her ‘struggles’, but trust me, not this one.

“I went to an all-girls Catholic school for six years during the time when kids
actually had handwriting class (I’m restraining myself here). I’ve always had a
propensity for getting the cursive down pretty well. (oh I can’t stop myself...
reread the sentence and you couldn’t either…hint: propensity for getting…oh
dear, oh dear). What it evolved into was my pseudo-waitressing job (Okay.
Okay. Pseudo-waitressing…over to you) when I was auditioning I didn’t wait
tables. I did calligraphy for the invitations, for, like, Robin Thicke and Paula
Patton’s wedding.” In the kitchen? Curiously MM didn’t use her propensity for
getting the cursive down on the 600 wedding invites. You know – her wedding
invites. Whew. No worrying about kitchen stains on the invites then.
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