Putting down the mad dog.

President Putin, is clearly not balanced. He has become paranoid about his own role as a saviour of the Russian empire. He has become a pariah to most of the world with the support of a very few authoritarian ,so called , leaders. He is killing men women and children with apparent indifference, whilst the world looks on.

To some extent the free world is afraid to face up to this ‘mad dog’ because he has access to the largest nuclear assets in the world. What does that say about our international control system?

Our failure to defend the frees state that is Ukraine has been predicated on these awful facts. Namely a madman with nuclear resources can do what he likes, and there is no way to stop the murder and mayhem that Putin imposes on Ukraine every day.

Sanctions on Putin and his gang of kleptocrats will have some effect but in the meantime women and children are being murdered in Ukraine every day.

The only way to stop the mad dog is to put it down. It, is the right word, for Putin is inhuman and exhibits all that can be bad in a human frame. He is selfish, power mad, greedy, self obsessed, and paranoid. If he were any sort of animal he would be put down as a danger to other species.

Make no mistake, this lunatic is laying waste to a nation. To families, communities and a young long suffering nation that is just beginning to enjoy the fruits of freedom and fairness. Putin is in fact cocking a snook at freedom as a value. As he sees it, his way as an omnipotent being, controlling, killing dissent as the only way of leadership.

The corruption that is embedded in Putin’s Russia will, we hope, lead to an end to this dreadful scene. Army’s are without conviction, shops without bread, ATM’s without cash all a result of this maniac’s self indulgence. That is what will bring Putin down. How soon? is the question. How many more Ukrainians have to die while the world shows its disgust, but more importantly the Russian people are awakened to the evil that is Putin.

The Russian people are the only power that can bring the mad dog down. Propaganda from the West must be the main weapon couple with extreme sanctions must squeeze the message home.

If Putin is brought down then what will succeed him? Russia most surely will be sorely hurt. The old machine of authoritarian propaganda must be replaced with a democratic model. To do that will take many years and great wisdom. These are questions that must be part of the plan that not only brings the mad dog down, but that looks toward a more democratic future.

Ukraine, Ukraine, long live Ukraine!

Madman murders masses!

Putin is clearly unbalanced. What do we do when a totalitarian Head of State loses his sense of what is normal. We know he is moving toward bombing Ukraine with chemical weapons and the West and China are doing nothing to stop him. How do you stop him? That’s the question.

He clearly has a virtual complete grip on the Russian media, so most Russians, though not all, believe that Russia is not the aggressor but the victim. How the Russian people receive the truth is possibly the most important issue before the West. How do we inform the Russian people of the TRUTH?

How do we defend a free state? Presently it seems that Russia has invaded Ukraine without a second thought. Putin lied about the build up, he teamed up with the other evil monster the President Of Belarus, the west did very little except rely on sanctions which is something, but what further sanctions can we press if Russia uses chemical weapons. Famously Obama failed to respond in Syria, Russia is going to bomb Ukraine flat and follow up with a dose of chemical poison. Will the West do anything? Probably not! That is what Putin is banking on, the West will continue with its self interest and ignore atrocities and the murder of thousands of people, whose only sin was to seek a democratic way of life.

There we have it. In a nut shell, any lunatic with a nuclear arsenal can do anything he wants to independent countries who are not members of a major defence alliance. If the West does not stop Putin now, then there will be no end to Putin’s aggression. Moldova next, then the eastern provinces of Hungary and so on . People will die in their thousands and the world will wring its collective hands.

Obama has a lot to be sorry for, not least he lacked the guts to enforce his red line on chemical weapons in Syria. I hate to say it, but Biden is an old man with a weak mandate. Putin knows the USA has no stomach for a fight.

If we have not got the guts to provide the Ukraine with jet aircraft and heavier aggressive missile systems then we deserve all we get. Putin wins!

Ashamed of my Government, too little, too late!

The UK is moving more slowly to lessen the load for Ukrainian refugees than any other European nation. Despite the fact that Johnson blows his trumpet about how generous the UK is in welcoming refugees, the UK remains the slowest responder to the humanitarian crisis for the people of Ukraine.

The miserable responses and lack of flexibility in setting up visa stations under the guise of security is just laughable. More visa officers would be the answer, not no officers at all. To make refugees who have relations in the UK travel from Calais to Paris or Lille to wait a further five days at least whilst the UK Govt checks finger prints and masses of other unnecessary documentation is both inhuman and completely lacking in sympathy for the plight of the refugees.

Of course there is a security risk of Russian spies slipping through the net into UK, but surely that excludes mothers with children, and those in clear need of medical support. Even if Mattha Hari is about to infiltrate the UK surely there must be a way to follow up once admission has taken place. To pretend that our security comes before compassion is so typical of the selfish British view. Why do we not think other European power are under the same risk factors?

Boris shouts about his own immigrant forebears, most of whom have done very well thank you. Well enough to produce Bullingdon Boy bullies and inveterate liars. No wonder so many are ashamed of being British.

Putin’s shot in his foot will hurt us all.

The invasion of Ukraine is one of the great tragedies of the modern age. There’s no need to elaborate. Putin is the one crazy man who is the sole decision maker, he has now the most dreadful dilemma, his invasion looks as if it is failing by any measure. Further the Russian people are beginning to understand that the war, is a war, that many Russians are needlessly dying, both army conscripts as well as Ukrainian cousins. The cost to Putin is now gathering weight and soon, if the Ukrainians hold out, the bankrupt Putin will no longer afford to wage this useless war.

What then? Will the mad Putin pull the nuclear trigger, or will he sue for peace? It seems unlikely that the Putin we know, will sue for peace. His delusions of the Russian empire resuscitated by the great man Putin will be in ruins, and we must hope that an internal revolution will remove this megalomaniac from the seat of absolute power. If not, then it seems that an escalation of conflict will be his most likely scenario.

In Putin’s mind the West has gone to war economically, but in the minds of Ukrainians Putin has been allowed to pillage a sovereign country without any physical response. Economic sanctions is one thing, but artillery and bombs are quite another. Are we to believe that any nuclear bully can do what he likes and all of us are afraid to escalate physically into what will be the inevitable nuclear war?

By crushing Russia economically we will subject the Russian people as well as the rest of the free world to dreadful depravation, from food to shelter and warmth. What will that say about the west? Will we drive a wedge between West and East for the foreseeable future? Will the distrust be strengthened? Will the Russian people be driven by desperate plight to believing another one-man, strongman ethos to drag them back to an equitable normality?

As an optimist, we hope that Putin has really shot himself in the foot. That the days ahead will lead to the end of his lunatic reign. That Russia and Ukraine will be a family again and that a democratic environment will be re-established in both countries. Only the Russian establishment can bring this scenario into being, by ousting Putin, counting the cost and seeking not only forgiveness but hope for the future.

The west at large will have to bare the burden of reconstituting the smashed fabric of the Ukrainian country, culture and people. The World and United Nations must somehow ensure that nuclear blackmail is made impossible.

Putin has cast the human race down. Some where, some one, must make the difference. Not only of selflessness, but of vision and generosity of spirit that can affect all those in power, be they democratic or alternative. Putin by his cruelty may be saving the world.

Hero and Villain, Zelensky and Putin.

Zelensky, little guy who came to politics almost by accident. A young bright fellow who was a great success as a pretend comic president on TV. His aim was to parody the false claims and corruption in the burgeoning democracy of Ukraine.

This unassuming young man was swept to power in recent free elections by an electorate both amused and interested in his radical and sometime comedic platform. Little did they know that the hungry manic bear from their big and brutal neighbour Russia would range up in a jealous rage, because Zelensky despite many shortfalls remained a bastion of, and turned a friendly face to, the west.

What a revelation Zelensky has been. A character of heroic stature who is standing up to the lunatic bully Putin. A young man who has spurned the option to leave his suffering countrymen and to stand with them in their ghastly plight. He knows he’s Putin’s number one target, yet he stands with his countrymen completely outnumbered and leads by example. Oh! how we wish that there were more leaders like this wonderfully heroic Zelensky!

Putin by contrast is a lunatic has-been who is desperately clinging to ideas that are outmoded; The resurgence of the Soviet empire. An unbalanced sociopathic madman who sits alone behind tables and throne like defences, clear, at least in his own warped mind, that he is the world’s strongest man. He thinks nothing of killing thousands and displacing millions. He thinks nothing of wiping billions from his countrymen’s economy, he thinks nothing of destroying lives and future of millions of people.

He is an easy man to hate. And the hate of Putin is now one of Ukraine’s best weapons, for it will be many years even after the overthrow of Putin that the world will ever relax about dictators like this deranged monster.

Let every free thinking person register their dissent to this monstrous clown, let every free person stand and show support for Zelensky and his countrymen. We fervently hope that the west will protect Mr President Zelensky from that evil tyrant Putin. Please let our thoughts be known to all, who in whatever small way, can help the beleaguered Ukrainians.

Viva Zelensky!

A mass murderer and no one seems to want to stop him.

Putin may well be deranged, but that does not preclude the idea of stopping him by deposition, assassination or revolution. It seems impossible that the Russian people and those under arms in Russian forces do not recognise that Putin is a megalo-maniac who is killing thousands and risking nuclear disaster.

Yes, the difference between Russian form of totalitarianism and Western democracy is very marked but surely the way to coexist is in peace not war. Russian troops are killing their brothers and sisters in Ukraine for no other reason than that President Putin has lost the plot, gone off his rocker!

Why must one person die because of this crazy man? And why must thousands die because what Putin says – goes – even mass murder, the flouting of international law and the sacrifice of Russia’s future?

Thank the stars that Putin has in his eccentricity made sure he has become a Pariah, a universally recognised war criminal and a genocidal lunatic. For the first time in many years the West is united to resist this lunatic. Even Turkey and India have condemned Putin’s criminality.

Two things then: What of the future? What of the Russian people?

Many more Ukrainians and Russians are going to die, and they will die brutally and for no purpose. At least those Ukrainians have shown heroism and pride and given their lives for freedom. The Russians will die as aggressors and invaders, the savages of the twenty first century.

What of Russia’s future and its people? Our first thought is to punish, to punish the people who would not stand up to Putin and say – No! Is the whole nation unaware of what its leader is doing? Are the Russian military commanders blind to the evil that they do? If they are morally blind do they deserve mercy? if Putin is deposed what will these episodes tell us of Russian values and apparent blind obedience to obviously manic choices?

Picking up the pieces after Putin’s manic romp will have to be long and hard for not only Russia but the whole world. We must, if the human race is to survive, blend mercy and forgiveness to all people, we must, by example, show that democracy is inherently the better way.

China, of course, waits in the wings whilst the drama unfolds, no doubt calculating how to dominate the world. The West must, absolutely must, stand up with courage and fairness to alternative regimes and by example ensure that our world is never again held to ransom by some lunatic leader. We thought Hitler, was the last and we chose to ignore Putin razing Syria to the ground to support the evil that is Assad. Now we know better, but it is very late in the day, for we can already see the President of China commit genocide with impunity.

We must now ensure that the President of Ukraine and his lieutenants are kept safe, that the Ukrainian people are spared further torture, for they stand in lonely peril. The short term repair of harm rests in Russian hands, Putin must be stopped. Sadly we no longer care how!

Ashamed to be British, does anyone care?

With a leader who lies and a parliament who don’t care that he does, what does that say of the Brits? Well for sure it’s not complimentary. Our so called democracy is piled high with lies and corruption and nobody gives a damn. The opposition to the terrible Tories is lamentable with at least more honest leadership but boring to a point of collective sleep.

Is this what it has come to? Basically no one cares. Can it be collective ignorance rules and no one really understands? Or is it that people don’t care? Surely the latter. Despite widespread poverty, and the wealthy getting wealthier, the crooks running the London banking and property sectors, no body seems to care.

The break up of the UK, it seems, is what preoccupies the vocal minority of activists. The Scots, the Welsh and the Irish see the opportunity created by this lousy Uk governance to leave the uselessness of Westminster behind, and who can blame them.

Boris Johnson rode to power on the back of Brexit, not the Brexit of independent trade and innovative business, but on the back of cringing xenophobia and the fear of competitive talent from overseas. Now, the man who has lied and made it up as he’s gone along continues to pretend that he has the interests of the country at his heart when it must be obvious to anyone that his only interest is himself.

Sue Gray was exceedingly silly to accept the brief to explore the obvious, and Cressida Dick has now scotched any idea of blame (yet another howler!). Johnson is now a lame duck, leading a lame party of witless cowardly misanthropes. All care more for their jobs than about the country they are supposed to govern. Shame on them, I hope that the next election will expose the Tory party for what it is, and if Johnson is still in power then the Union will be lost for ever.

The question is; Will I bother to vote? My choices will be Nationalist or Socialist. As a life long Conservative I will have to make that painful choice.

Artificial Intelligence, it is already here, and there!

Can Alexa think? Can Google predict what I will want to buy? Can machines think? These are all very big questions. because if the answer is yes, then are humans in jeopardy of becoming redundant. Is AI challenging the prime issue of human reason?

In the 1950’s it was standard belief that if a machine could produce results equal to humans, then it could be called intelligent. However, despite these limited results it was understood, even then, that results of machine processing would always be without sentience, emotion or sympathetic awareness of external issues which are influenced by, but not part of the problem or issue to be solved.

AI can now exceed the old measure of Intelligence, for example, computer programs can now extrapolate complex relationships and patterns to the extent that far exceed human capability. A language model has been developed that trains itself by consuming freely available texts and extrapolating new sentences and paragraphs by detecting patterns in sequential elements. AI is now able to facilitate the production and composition of new texts that meet our definition of human intelligence.

In a book that I am writing I imagined a politician in a major political event leading to an election flooding social media with generative artificial intelligence phrases that then floods the social media with extrapolated ideas. The antithesis of democracy, at least to my mind.

Political polarisation is already a major issue exacerbated by false news, further degradation of truth by the extrapolation of the extreme views and the amplification by media algorithms that encourage clicks by serving users’ increasing extreme views.

The above are bad consequences of AI, but there are many excellent consequences as well, including the development of everything from self-driving vehicles to the development of new antibiotics.

It is worth mentioning that in terms of world concentration and control of the development of AI China leads by quite a long shot. Like all processes the value of the finished product is only as good as the input. The moral standpoint for the development AI is an absolute imperative. Will we acquiesce to a world where the infallibility of demagogues such as Putin and Xi is right by algorism rote, or will be use AI via free human thinking and democratic systems?

The jury is out, but the wakeup call is there.

COP26 – I’m sorry but……

The conferences in Kyoto and Paris, remember them? Kyoto was meant to enshrine in International law global resposibilty for climate regulation. Paris on the other hand recognised that The Kyoto treaty was multinational and meant to be binding on all the signatories but since 1997 the enforcement of Kyoto had become hopelessly complicated and illusary. So in Paris, lower thresholds were set enshring a much more acceptable compromise; Nationally Determined Contributions.

Fundamentally, despite a dawning realisation that the whole world faces the same threat, these NDC’s have allowed countries to persue whatever energy policies they see as to their advatage. The panoply of widely diverse scenarios is mindboggling, some, if not all understandable. However the consequences are dire. The COP’s have signally failed to produce a model of global governance that can counter power politics, let alone share a sense of a common destiny.

Examples of the political shinnanikins, include Brazil trying to get paid to decrease deforestation, President Xi arguing its not his turn to do his bit and should not be seen as the same as developed economies, who got rich before China, on the back of industrial polution. Mr Putin will not turn up at all..

What to do? How can we ensure firstly that we all see the common threat of climate change. There are glimpses that this happening and that the jamboree in Glasgow is at least, furthering that realisation. But it is all for nothing, if there is not a common agenda shared by all. This aspiration, for it still is just that, is not being improved by the richer nations having reneged on their promise to put up $100mn for poorer countries to arm themselves against climate change. What message does that send?

The problem extends beyong UN climate change conferences. Whilst globalisation has liften millions out of poverty, it ha s fueled increasing concentrations of wealth. The poor and the rich have very different ideas and aspirations, because actions on climate change have very different rewards for the rich or the poor. Hence the politics of power and envy all mitigate against agreement. Since Paris and the NDC’s the world has failed miserably to contain the climate change challenge. Already we are way behind on the challenge to contain global warmimg to 1.5 dgrees.

The answer is not that somebody else will fix the problem, climate change is above all a common problem – the world is burning and flooding! Unless there is a international binding treaty based on science COP26 will just be another talking shop.

Tolerance, habit and respect.

As time goes by, I find it hard to accept so may changes to what I thought was a confirmed view of democracy. Firstly I assumed that democracies exist for the common good. This meant essentially behaving within the law and to the spirit of the law.

Now, I was born when the nuclear family was the basis of Christian Democracy, both terms Christian and democracy stood as important foundation ideas for the way we hoped to live. During my lifetime the Christian and its associated religious ideals have waned, though many would still claim that even without religious connotations the ideas and ideals of the philosophy still hold good.

The other great principle of democracy is, of course, individual freedom within the law, including freedom of speech, assembly, and the written or broadcast word.

All these liberating freedoms are circumscribed within the law. The law from Magna Carta to this day has evolved reflecting changes especially the migration of people and ideas, religious or not. There have been many instances where the acceptance of ideas and religions have not been received easily or without resistance, so that democracy itself has been subverted.

Democracy, I always thought, was a system of Government in which power invested in the people and exercised by them through freely elected representatives. So, consequently, Democratic Government should, or is it must, reflect the majority view? What about the freedom of the minority? How does democratic government respond to change?

Change has, as ever, been rampant, sometimes clearly for the good and espousing the basic values of selflessness and kindness. The realisation that history has shown that mans evolution is full of community and tribal defences and aggressions, some clearly evil by today’s standards. The changes are usually wrought through minority intervention, and almost inevitably ridiculed by the majority that favours the status quo. Some even attempt to subvert ‘progress’ by attempting to change into backward steps, for example the Trumpian effort to undermine the democratic elective process in the US.

The minority have views that are crazy sometimes, progressive sometimes, the big question is how do we make room institutionally to accommodate both the crazy and the progressive and then to reject or accept that which is right and progressive?

It all boils down to the idea of voting by individual for a government that will reflect our views and beliefs. This is clearly a deeply flawed system, but its the only one we have, if we espouse the idea of democracy. Can we accommodate the debate that democracy maybe the wrong way to go, and we should go the totalitarian route of the Chinese republic, for example. We have seen the dangers of ‘couldn’t care less’ electorates, the lopsided conspiracists, and the populist ‘last idea is best’ and the simply ‘crooked’. All these have evolved from so called democratic governments.

Accommodating change within the continued prospect of mass migration, the richer getting richer and the poor poorer, the planet either drowning or burning, is beyond most of our comprehension. Yet we must decide if the idea of a just democracy is worth sustaining. What are we going to do about it?

Amongst the most troubling issues that face us all are race and gender. Two of the great empirics of human kind. That they are seen as major issues is in itself astonishing, and expressions on these issues are so often hateful. How sad is that?

The issues of misogyny, race and democracy all depend on the human race to put aside our tribal differences and to respect one another. Respect is a big word. Respect those who have impaired abilities, respect those of different colour, gender or view. The very basis of democracy is the respect of the elected for the electorate and vice versa. We all have a way to go, and very little time to get there.

Time to wake up, with respect to us all.