I was intrigued the other day whilst listening to Michael Cohen, Trumpy's ex-lawyer, that there is a bureaucratic concept in the US of 'truth' and 'truth'. How confounding, but it appears that in American political legalese someone can speak the truth whilst another person can also speak the truth and declare completely opposite versions of events. The peculiarity is that both are acceptable in the current climate of American politics, not least when Trumpy himself denies the 'truths' spoken by his critics and counteracts these with 'truths' of his own. Only in America, we might think. Yet somehow this paints a picture, a sordid picture at that, of a government mired in creating its own version of events, irrespective of accounts recalled by others and equally scathing of the damage it does to others. Trumpy is on a survival mission. The Russian interference in the 2016 election is not a subject that is going to lie down and die and despite Trumpy's clumsily declared 'truths' the consensus is building against him as Special Counsel Mueller compiles a seriously thick dossier implicating Trumpy's own complicity. Add to this the scandals of pay-offs to assorted female 'service providers' to keep them quiet and we see the real President of the United States in all his seedy and venal glory. I concede that there are times when I just might possibly think that this is a president who gets stuff happening whilst orthodox politicians run around in circles. But this is of a different magnitude now. Suppression of the 'real truth' is being shown to be the hallmark of the presidency whilst a 'fake truth' is engineered and promoted to belittle the credibility of any detractor. This is truly grimy, sordid, unpleasant behaviour by a President of the United States. Whatever plus's this man has his minus's exceed them in so many ways. Get together America and rid yourself of this aberration.
I was equally dismayed to listen to Jeremy Hunt declaring that the Saudi government were a necessary stabilising force in Middle Eastern politics, using British, American and French bombs to blast the Yemeni population to smithereens. Mr Hunt managed to smile in his quaint and benign way whilst making his case that the Saudi's weren't bad guys, they were, in fact, holding the forces of rebellion and revolution at bay in a region so mixed up that I almost imagined there was next going to be a declaration of 'truths' and 'other truths'. The bottom line is, of course, that Britain earns quite a bit of dosh from selling arms to Saudi, so criticising such a valued customer is clearly not something any politician in government can comfortably engage with. What spineless and morally bereft folk we have become when we can condone what Saudi is doing to known civilian targets in Yemen whilst at the same time turning a blind eye to the appalling human rights record of the Saudi's themselves. God help us.
The spectacle of loutish British tourists in Rome cavorting half naked in a fountain in front of the Tomb to the Unknown Warrior is nauseating. How we let ourselves down when we travel abroad. Not only is this highly disrespectful to the location it is disrespectful of Italian culture and an affront to a host nation who allows such craven and ignorant animals into their country in good faith. To the British police, my message is, hunt these creatures down and throw the book at them - return them to Italy for prosecution and hopefully not whinge when they get a 10 year sentence. We need to get better at being responsible world citizens - find these idiots and send them somewhere the sun don't shine - for a long time.
Venezuela is in a near state of economic collapse and many of its citizens are fleeing to find a better life elsewhere. In a nation so rich in natural resource this is a calamity and an undeniable condemnation of the country's governmental mismanagement. If it collapses, 10% of the worlds oil supply is jeopardised and we will then all feel a little bit of Venezuelan pain. At ground level, of course, a human tragedy is unfolding - but the added tragedy is that the refugees are fleeing to Colombia and Ecuador where their resource to provide haven is ever challenged. Perhaps if we can turn a blind moral eye to Saudi trade that enriches us we might also turn a blind eye to the catastrophe that is happening in a region more associated with crime than economic collapse.