Why this Blog?

A place where I can lament the changing times; for eccentric comments on current affairs and for unfashionable views, expressed I hope, in cogent style; also occasional cris de coeur largely concerned, I regret to say, with myself.


I welcome your comments, so do please write. Please note however that all comments are moderated prior to publication. Whilst I fully appreciate that life can be frustrating, nevertheless, abuse, SMS language and illiteracy will not be tolerated!

Saturday 28 November 2009

(Not so) Silly Season Story?

An "Alien" apparently. Picture source here

Just a quick one this time, from another article in the Daily Telegraph today.

The report states that the Space Institute of the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences says that aliens already exist on Earth. Mr Lachezar Filipov, who is the deputy director of the Institute is quoted as saying:

"Aliens are currently all around us, and are watching us all the time."

No, Mr Filipov, they are not actually aliens; they are ostensibly human.

They work for the police, the secret services, the tax authorities, the customs and excise, the health and safety departments, the race relations industry, the "animal rights" industry, terrorist groups, the music industry, and probably another 1001 nosey-parker organisations. Here in France there are also local busybodies who fulfil themselves spying on their neighbours and sneaking to the "Fisc" (tax authority) rather as "right-thinking" citizens did in Soviet Russia and Stalinist East Germany; these too are not actually "aliens" within the meaning of the word (though they are to me!)

Mr Filipov also says that his Institute is studying 150 crop circles; I doubt he'll find anything there, although Reg Presley of the Troggs might be interested.

Reg Presley of "Troggs" fame.
Picture credit: The Sun

Until the next time

A Brave Man I think

This time it's Russia. I have generally concentrated on Russia's soviet past in previous postings hereabouts, but today I shall mention something contemporary.

There is, in reality, little real freedom of speech in the so-called democratic west; in recent Russia there appears to be rather less. There have been several murders of certain characters who had, it seems, the effrontery to criticise the system (a.k.a the Kremlin) and a distinctly laggardly approach to solving these dreadful crimes. Recently a lawyer has died in prison in Moscow, apparently as a consequence of the authorities withholding medical treatment. Of course President Medvedev has ordered an inquiry. I doubt if anything will happen though; I seem to recall that the president has ordered various inquiries... I have a nasty feeling that his prime-ministerial colleague is unlikely to be in accord.

Anyway, today's post concerns Russian outrage over a new film about the first Tsar: Ivan the Terrible. A prominent historian, Vyacheslav Manyagin, has asked that President Medvedev ban the film as it is deemed to be "an insult to Russian statehood" (!) Obviously M. Manyagin is not the "brave man" I referred to in my title.

The brave man is M. Pavel Lungin who directed the film. In response to these criticisms he made a very brave (especially in today's Russia) response. He said, in an interview with the Moscow Times:

"We can see a lot of the characteristics of his power today [...] After his reign, Russia was left behind in the process of progress. We have made no headway since that time."

I found this story reported in today's Daily Telegraph. Full article here.

Here's a picture from the film:

Nice... Picture source, here.

I sincerely wish M. Lungin a long and successful career...

Until the next time

Monday 23 November 2009

Moving - "Ukraine's Got Talent"

This video is stunning; it helps if you have a sense of history, and some knowledge of the beastliness suffered by the Ukrainians under "the great leader and teacher" a.k.a; mass torturer and murderer, Josef Vissiaronovich Stalin.

But even if you do not have this knowledge you are certainly bound to be in awe of the talent of Kseniya Simononva.

Until the next time