Bristling Brock speaks out...


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The British government is making no obvious effort to recover its dignity - perhaps they all realise that it's blown too far away with the hot-air style they have all seemingly adopted to even try.  What a disappointment they have collectively turned out to be !

Not to exclusively single out the British government in this assessment, the Americans, the Germans, the EU at large and, dare we say with a slight snigger, the French are all leaping around like bewildered deer in the headlights.  One might even suspect that the devious Chinese have sprayed the West with a chaos concoction from Wuhan so universal is the seeming lack of...anything... from any of them.

On the face of it, if you look at the leaders of the Western cabal there is a distinct lack of character.  You might say in response that Boris is a right old character - which indeed he is in the buffoonery context - but real character derives from commitment, resolve, determination and sheer grit when things about you are all ahoo.  Regrettably, Boris doesn't have this particular brand of character.   Equally, Biden, Scholz, the EU in general and Macron display no dynamism, no sense of direction and collaborative purpose in response to the current crises in the Ukraine, in energy supplies, pandemic policies, policing and the broader rule of law (questionably no longer a meaningful aspiration for a Western society).  Add to this the blatant mischief being conjured up by the Russians and the Chinese and we have a recipe for starting a chapter in the history books on (rapid ?) decline in Western values, beliefs and societal behaviour.

The Ukraine crisis in particular very much mirrors the crisis days before WW2 broke out with politicians from assorted places trying to negotiate away any commitment whatever to defending Czechoslovakia from German annexation.  What followed is well recorded history and could well repeat itself if our politicians do not collectively get their heads together to devise a common position - the West will either ignore what Russia does with the Ukraine (and it will surely do something if for no other reason than to save face) or the West will put together such a collection of Draconian sanctions that Russia will be economically prejudiced.   The tragedy is, that like the poor Czechs in 1938, nobody is talking seriously with the Ukrainians.  They are the classic pig-in-the-middle, no more than a pawn on the West's absurdly chaotic chessboard.   And the Russians know it.

As for events challenging the British government the news out of Westminster is still continuously nebulous and vague.  It is difficult to see how this might turn out successfully (dubious as to whether 'successfully is the correct way of putting it) for the Conservatives but it must surely be damaging the wider expectations of probity and honesty in high office at all levels of British society.  Perhaps their only salvation is in the national belief that the Labour opposition is so equally poor as to represent no meaningful improvement.   A real Scylla and Charybdis choice....we definitely need Mr Rees-Mogg around to pepper the dialogue with a touch of obfuscating Ancient Greek ! 



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It's a while since Bristling Brock has taken to the keyboard but events in Westminster force some level of outrage and despair to be aired.

What a shambles !  When Boris arrived on the scene, won an election and pushed a form of Brexit through, I was encouraged to imagine that his new style and manner might break the country free of its political stupor and lethargy.  Heaven knows, after May and Cameron and their negative approach to Brexit, something radical had to happen with British politics.  How wrong one can be.   Accepting that the pandemic imposed a huge burden upon governance of any persuasion, the Conservatives have nevertheless wandered aimlessly on both domestic and foreign agenda's.   Broken promises, poor decisions, outright lies and finger pointing to deflect criticism have become the norm.  Add to this a monumental increase in buffoonery by the PM and we don't need to imagine too hard as to what our domestic and international reputation has begun to look like to the rest of the world.  Laughing stock doesn't even begin to describe it.

Bristling Brock isn't that concerned with boozy get-togethers at No.10 - I doubt there cannot be anyone in the country, hand-on-heart, that can say they haven't bent the pandemic rules a little - but what it has shone a searchlight upon is a culture of inept behaviour, weak man-management, poor judgement, almost complete communication misreading and, above all, a Cabinet Office team that despite strings of no doubt impressive paper qualifications, has exhibited just how lacking in experience, capability and cohesion they are.   Shambolic is another word that barely sums the situation up adequately.   Surrounding this bunch are the elected cabinet members themselves.  What an equally unimpressive cadre they have turned out to be - so much so that there isn't much to look at in terms of a change of leadership/

Politics has long been described as a dirty business but with a few notable exceptions over the years, the dirt has remained in Westminster.  Now we have No.10's dirty washing hanging out for the world to see with the real tragedy being that the government and its out-dated civil service establishment totally blind to the fact and impotent to gain control.

The government's culture is replicated in the country at large, eventually.  People will start to behave in a like manner....'if they can do it, so can we !' - and our British culture needs no further diminishing beyond the dubious level it already sits at.

We need serious people with grown-up thinking and collaboration to exercise governance.  Events of late have shown us to be vulnerable to the dry-rot of very poor governance and this must change.  Whether Boris has the character and wisdom to pull things around is now an open question, but he's made a pretty steep mountain to climb to redeem any sort of credibility.   Quit the buffoonery and select serious people who know a thing or two to get behind you.  If you're lucky, Boris, you might just have enough time to achieve this before a sharp political axe swings your way - so get on with it and behave like a Prime Minister !

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This last week or so has seen something of an implosion within government, almost a visual case study in complete uncertainty, a classic 'deer in the headlights' moment of complete inaction.

Britain is at a crossroads - yet again - where the governmental choices it now makes will define whether it remains a survivable government or succumbs to the plethora of competing social and economic demands being made of it.   Add to this the appalling revelations of police mismanagement and delivery within the Met and Manchester's police authorities and we see another layer of decay that needs incising out and replacing very quickly.  Public confidence doesn't solely rest with government, but also in the institutions that form the pillars of society and their functions as part of the essential process of applying the rule of law and equitability.  And it is not only the police in the frame of public scrutiny, one could well add the cash voracious NHS and the entire social care system into that view of disquiet that is creeping into the base level public view.

This is dangerous stuff for any government.  It can surely see the growing circumspection with which it is now being viewed - even by those loyal to its ethos - and its lack of reaction to the range of issues - the economy, tax rises, termination of furlough and universal credit supplements, the drift to stagflation, social services, policing, energy crises, supply chains and essential food supplies, immigration, climate change, trade deals and the unacceptable behaviour of the French in the guise of the EU over fishing rights and generally just about everything else.  All of these need to be addressed by competent and organised government that actually has confidence in itself.   And perhaps that is the biggest ingredient missing, the ability to work together, mutually, with the national interest at its heart.  To us, the outsiders looking in, there seems to be no cohesion, common purpose or balanced thinking throughout government other than electoral posturing...'Keep on voting for us and we'll eventually come through all this !'   That is not a solution.  It is not a strategy to resolve these issues and it is not - in this world of infinitely available communication and messaging - an image that promotes confidence in governmental ability and resolve.

We don't want to join the usual whingeing mob that can do little else but complain but we do want to see a government that shows its mettle and ability to tackle multiple challenges.  That is what government is for - it serves no purpose by just sitting there and spouting inanities and posturing throughout meaningless and countless interviews where they've got nothing to say other than platitudes that serve only to irritate the electorate.   Language, whilst important, that uses nonsense phrases like 'Levelling up', 'Doubling down' and 'Equality for all' do not cut it with the thinking population.   Our people need to get into the real world - quickly.

Switching to Bristling Brock's undying love for the French, we might also see some parallels in inept governance there - as indeed we have seen in Germany also.  But let's stick with the French - that wonderful nation that applies its Gallic emotions in bursts of invective against the British and its 'Fifth wheel' status in their eyes.   One might suppose that after a thousand years of upsetting the French they are now trying to get their own back with their open hostility and frenzied paranoia over Brexit and submarine deals.  But it is a distraction is it not ?  By attacking us, Monsieur Macron deflects public opinion away from his own woes and possibly imbues his electorate with a sense of government that is actively challenging us bad boys over the Channel.  It remains to be seen whether Germany's Olaf Scholz follows in the same footsteps as Fr Merkel has previously done.  But the image is comparable - the attempts by senior politicians to point fingers and shout 'boo-yah !' to give the false impression of strength.

Maybe the world needs saving from such people.