Danny Dyer – the hardman actor (Human Traffic; The Football Factory) currently running the Queen Vic pub in EastEnders – has become a national hero in Britain by calling former Prime Minister David Cameron a four-letter expletive.
Dyer, speaking on ITV’s Good Evening Britain, was venting his disgust at the ongoing failure of the UK government to deliver on Brexit. As he explained, he holds David Cameron partly to blame.
“This whole Brexit thing when you’re judging them. Who knows what Brexit is. You watch Question Time and it’s comedy. No-one knows what it is – it’s like this mad riddle. What’s happened to that twat David Cameron that called this on?
“How come he can scuttle off? He called all this on. Where is he? He’s in Europe, in Nice, with his trotters up. Where is the geezer? He should be held to account for it.”
Many people seem to agree that Dyer’s performance was the highlight of an otherwise lacklustre evening which saw the England football team being beaten 1-0 by a team from Belgium.
Do you like the meat in your hamburgers pink in the middle?
Look, I’m not judging you if you don’t. If you like your burgers tough, chewy, tasteless, sterile, then you go, girl!
All I’m saying is that for those of us in Nanny State Britain who like their burgers underdone properly (ie pink in the middle) these are difficult times.
There are loads of fancy burger joints opening up all over the country, but most chefs insist – quite belligerently in some cases – that they will not serve their meat cooked any less than medium because Health and Safety regulations forbid them from doing so.
Yes, yes, I appreciate that under-cooked minced beef can indeed harbour a variety of unpleasant bacteria; that when you consume this stuff, you are taking a risk.
But that surely is the blessing of being a grown up in a free country. You – not the state – decide what is and isn’t good for you. You make the trade-off – delicious, melt-in-the-mouth, unctuous pink minced steak v the risk of a bad tummy – not some finger-wagging bureaucrat. This is what freedom means: the ability to take calculated risks – risks which, by nature, will on occasion lead you to come unstuck. But that’s OK. Life’s like that. That’s the deal, for better or worse. No one gets out of here alive. But that’s no reason for us to stop doing everything that is fun while we’re waiting for the worst to happen.
This is why my favourite new Conservative is Liz Truss. She has just given a brilliant speech at the London School of Economics on the subject of liberty. And burgers.
Here is the relevant passage:
Or take burgers. I keep being told by excellent burger producers, whether it’s the Burger Shop in Hay-On-Wye or Bleecker Street in London, that there are strict restrictions against selling medium rare.
Why can’t I as a consumer decide, as I would be in most parts of the USA, or France?
Regulations against my tastes in burgers may see a little trivial, but they are symptomatic of a broader malaise.
Unnecessary red tape restricts business and consumer freedom, so I believe we should cut it wherever we can.
A tiny bunch of left-wing loons with no lives, shrivelled penises, and the collective IQ of a pickled herring is trying to ban a screening of the classic 60s movie Zulu at an armed forces fund-raising event in Kent.
Before I go on can I absolutely stress that while it has been widely reported – e.g. here and here – this is NOT a news story? The only reason I am writing about it is because it’s an excuse to say what a marvellous film Zulu is: one of those character-building experiences that every boy should have on his route to manhood.
It teaches the important virtue of keeping a stiff upper lip even as your small, thinly-manned outpost is surrounded by Zulus – farsands of ’em – and you are in grave danger of being disembowelled by one of their fearsome assegais. You learn that if you keep your head, suppress your urge to flee and stand with your comrades you may yet prevail, just like the 150 or so British and colonial troops did at the Battle of Rorke’s Drift in 1879 when they successfully held out against a vastly superior of perhaps 3,000 Zulus whose spears were still bloody from the 1,300 imperial troops they’d helped slaughter the day before at Isandlwana.
It’s also the film where Michael Caine really established himself as one of the greats, playing against type as an upper class English officer (Lt Gonville Bromhead). Plus Stanley Baker and sundry other fine actors are in it. It has a fine score by John Barry. And the Zulu king Cetshwayo is famously played by his great grandson chief Buthelezi.
If you want more on why Zulu is so wonderful, here’s a piece I wrote on the subject earlier this year.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, which is part of the Department of Commerce, operates a constellation of earth-observing satellites. Because of its work on climate science data collection and analysis, it has become one of the most important American agencies for making sense of the warming planet. But that focus may shift, according to a slide presentation at a Department of Commerce meeting by Tim Gallaudet, the acting head of the agency.
In the presentation, which included descriptions of the past and present missions for the agency, the past mission listed three items, starting with “to understand and predict changes in climate, weather, oceans and coasts.” In contrast, for the present mission, the word “climate” was gone, and the first line was replaced with “to observe, understand and predict atmospheric and ocean conditions.”
The presentation also included a new emphasis: “To protect lives and property, empower the economy, and support homeland and national security.”
If this is indeed NOAA’s new emphasis, it would certainly accord with the skeptical views of President Trump on the “man-made global warming” issue.
For decades, like NASA, NOAA has been a leading player in promoting climate alarmism.
Every now and then greenies like to wheel out the claim that fossil fuels are “subsidised”.
Usually, this is because they’ve found some parti-pris, left-wing think tank to give their specious claims a veneer of respectability.
Today it is the turn of the Overseas Development Institute (ODI), which claims to be the “UK’s leading independent think tank on international development and humanitarian issues”. [I think that “and humanitarian issues” gives the game away, don’t you?]
According to the ODI, the world’s seven major democracies are spending at least $100 billion (£70 billion) a year propping up fossil fuels with “subsidies” and that the UK, with “subsidies” of £11 billion a year is the worst offender.
As I’ve written before, this is a lie: the last refuge of some the biggest, ugliest, most mendacious scoundrels on earth, stretching the meaning of “subsidy” beyond all usefulness.
One of Britain’s leading universities has gone into a blind panic after discovering that a quotation it had used to motivate students originally came from the mouth of an actual World War II German general, Erwin Rommel.
Here is Rommel’s aphorism:
“One cannot permit unique opportunities to slip by for the sake of trifles.”
The quotation was one of a series sent out by Exeter University’s career department in an email to students. Not unreasonably, you might think, given that the sentiment expressed is both motivational and wise.
But the moment someone pointed out that the quote came from Rommel, the university began frantically retracting.
A spokesperson said: “This was a genuine error and in no way intentional, however we apologise unreservedly for any offence it may have caused, and have put additional processes in place to ensure this doesn’t happen again.”
They added that staff member who selected the quote did not know who Rommel was and the information was taken from a free to use website.
This is indeed an extremely shaming incident for Exeter University, though not for the reasons given in the article.
Most worrying, perhaps, is the sheer level of ignorance at an academic institution ranked among the world’s top 150 universities.
But this is not something you ever hear about it in the media, obsessed as it is with the doom narrative fed to them by green activist bodies like Friends of the Earth.
That’s why I heartily recommend the excellent speech that Matt Ridley has just given in the House of Lords:
Globally, there have never been more hives of honey bees; there are about 90 million in the world compared with about 60 million 50 years ago. In Europe and the UK, too, we are near to a record number of hives. There are of course continuing problems with Varroa mites, as the noble Lord, Lord Stevenson, said, and Nosema and other pests, but there is no evidence of a decline in honey bees. It is true that there was colony collapse disorder 12 years ago, mostly in the United States, but it was a brief episode and is now reckoned to have been something to do with diseases or pests, not farming.
Presumably, that is why the opponents of neonicotinoids stopped talking about honey bees a few years ago and started talking more about wild bees. But where is the evidence that any decline in wild bees is recent or related to pesticides rather than to land management and habitat change? One recent study found that wild bees declined significantly before 1990 because of agricultural intensification but that the decline has since ceased or possibly reversed.
Climate change deniers are more likely to be old, white and racist, a study claims.
The relationship between racial attitudes and public opinion about climate change is examined. Public opinion data from Pew and American National Election Studies surveys are used to show that racial identification and prejudices are increasingly correlated with opinions about climate change during the Obama presidency. Results show that racial identification became a significant predictor of climate change concern following Obama’s election in 2008, and that high levels of racial resentment are strongly correlated with reduced agreement with the scientific consensus on climate change. These results offer evidence for an effect termed the spillover of racialization. This helps further explain why the public remains so polarized on climate change, given the extent to which racial grievances and identities have become entangled with elite communication about climate change and its related policies today.
Indeed, the study – by Salil D Benegal of the Department of Political Science at DePauw University in Greencastle, Indiana – argues that some skeptics were driven towards their position of climate denialism because of President Obama’s skin color.
Who would have guessed that the most important victory in the culture wars against the hard left this year would be won by a former radical Islamist?
British Muslim Maajid Nawaz – once arrested and imprisoned in Egypt for five years for his membership of the proscribed Islamist organisation Hizb ut-Tahrir; now a campaigner against radical Islam – is probably far from most conservatives’ idea of a natural hero.
But the $3.4 million settlement Nawaz has just won in a defamation action against the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) is a victory for us all.
And I really don’t just mean people who identify as conservative.
I mean the broad coalition that embraces moderate Muslims, Brexiteers, Trump voters, internet shitposters, Breitbart readers and writers, libertarian bloggers, European populists, Nigel Farage, Lionel Shriver, Paul Joseph Watson, Sargon of Akkad, Count Dankula, Morrissey, Thomas Sowell, Douglas Murray, Kanye West, Ann Coulter, the Imam of Peace, Andrew Bolt, Andrew Neil, Eric Weinstein, Joe Rogan, Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Jordan Peterson, Christina Hoff Sommers – anyone, in fact, whether they’re on the left or the right, who has been called a “Nazi” or “far right” or an “extremist” or a “fascist” or an “Uncle Tom” or similarly vile, reductive, hysterical, hate-filled, sometimes even life-threatening epithets by the increasingly aggressive forces of the radical left.