quaker fencer

kathz isn't quite my name. I may be a Quaker. If I'm a fencer I'm a bad one and I don't do sabre. If I'm a Quaker I'm a bad one - but you've worked that out already. Read on. Comment if you like. Don't expect a reply.

Location: United Kingdom

Monday, May 28, 2007

Bank Holiday treats

I tried to post some videos on this blog but for some reason they wouldn't work. So I've posted them elsewhere. I particularly hope the authors of The Gray Epee and Screw Bronze! take a look.

Happy Bank Holiday everyone.

Note: In England we're having the traditional Bank Holiday weather: cold and wet.

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Anonymous Jim said...

Hello Kathz!

I am reading your journal before I shower and head off to work.

I could not view the movies....yet. Yesterday I took a giant leap into this century and left my 'dial up" connection for one of these "new fangled "connections. I also have a new computer, which is sitting in a box behind me. Once I figure out a few things and have the time to hook up my new machine (or can bribe my son with something) I will come back and give the videos another try. It is one of the reasons I upgraded. I may even move my journal.

I generally do not comment on politics. You obviously feel like you have a problem with Tony Blaire, like we feel we have a problem with George Bush. Okay......I do not dispute you in any manner. However, making this comment on your blog is the only way I will ever have of paying him back.

The next morning, after the 911 attack, when our government leaders had gathered to address the nation. Tony Blair was there. No easy task for him to be there so quickly, but he was. The only leader from any nation in the world to do so. It meant so much to the American people, it almost makes me tear up writing about it.

So...whatever kind of leader he is/was........whatever your views of this man ( I do not dispute them.)....my image of him will always be of him standing up to thunderous applause.

11:41 am  
Blogger kathz said...

Dear Jim,

I realised after I posted the video that you didn't have broadband. I wondered if I should change the post and then thought you might get to see it (and the others I posted) elsewhere. But I hope you do get to see the clip from Le Bossu which I think is a treat.

I'd meant to post the videos here but they wouldn't load properly so I had to post them on my yahoo blog, which probably takes a more English perspective and comments on all sorts of strange subjects. (I started it as a sort of personal letter to friends when I was alone in the house on Boxing Day and it's taken some directions I didn't expect since then. Politics has crept in as I often blog at the same time as reading newspapers on-line.

It's hard to explain to people outside Britain how Tony Blair's reputation has changed since so many people celebrated his election. He seemed so honest once. Now comedians and satirists play tapes of him saying "you can trust me" to get an easy laugh - it works every time. While his party won the last election (there's no election for prime minister) they got only 35% of the vote, which I think means 26% of the electorate voted for them. It's by a long way the lowest percentage vote won by a governing party since World War II. Lots of people made public statements that they were supporting the party only because they could support no other, and that they wanted Tony Blair to resign. This isn't a good state for any country. I shan't go into the details of all that seems wrong. I have a more complex criticism of Tony Blair and the way politics is conducted nowadays.

Obviously I remember 9/11 - I turned on the television just after the transmission started. I'll never forget the horror of watching the towers collapse - or how I stood in silence with people of many races in a city centre, remembering. I spent quite a long time in New York in 1980 and took a walk to admire the twin towers. In September 2001 everyone seemed linked in sympathy for the people of New York - and that included the many Moslems I know. Even in February 2003, when between 1 and 2 million people filled the streets of London to say no to war (more than 1 in 50 of the population of England) people retained considerable trust in Tony Blair - and mistrust of Bush and his friends was not, on the whole, anti-American.

I cherish the memory of that anti-war protest because it brought together so many people with different perspectives, wanting to discuss ideas and learn from people with different perspectives. It wasn't a day about the people making speeches on the platform (most people didn't even get to Hyde Park because the march was so long and the streets so crowded). It was the day when people from town and country, from all over England (Scotland and Wales had their own protests) really tried to understand one another. It was, I think, the last day of hope.

I don't think it was like that in other countries, though it's hard to tell.

Now there's a huge sense of betrayal and cynicism here in relation to parliamentary politics. And Scotland Yard has passed a file to the Crown Prosecution Service about the "cash for peerages" enquiry (whether people sold seats in the House of Lords - our second chamber - in return for donations to party funds). Lots of documents seem to have been shredded but Blair's personal envoy to the Middle East and at least one of his main assistants have been questioned under police caution and may even be under police bail.

It's a pretty bad situation for any country to be in - the sort of situation that puts democracy in danger.

I don't know if this seems at all clear to you, but I'm trying to explain because in Kathz's blog I do comment on such matters (with very little on fencing). You are, of course, very welcome to read it and post comments if you wish.

I'll be here talking about fencing and asking for advice shortly - in my next post.

Good luck with all the technology. I rely on others too.

And I hope the new job is going well.


P.S. You were quite right to remind me that Tony Blair - like everyone - sometimes gets things right.

5:38 pm  

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