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June 17th 2014:
Welcome to this edition of Hackwriters. Read us and the amazing archives too. 15 years on-line and 7570 articles - reviews - stories - travel share any feature you like. Have a great June.
June Events Dear Boy, Events:
Iraq disintegrates in a couple of days - despite the USA spending a 18 Billion dollars on arming and training their army. How's that for value. One just wishes that the whole two wars in Iraq and the invasion of Afghanistan had never happened. Without them there would have been no world recession for starters. Now it's going to be trouble all the way. But wait does this mean Iran will come in from the cold? And what will be the price to be paid for that? A chilling reminder of the horror of the last decade was seeing Blair popping up to demand we bomb Iraq again. Sure ISIS are evil, but why exactly do they exist at all? Perhaps because we bombed the hell out of Iraq in 2003 and dismembered the infrastructure. Isis aren't poor either, after they took Mosul, they looted the banks and captured military supplies garnering about $2bn, according to Iraqi officials (source: The Guardian).

Add Putin's support for Assad in Syria which allowed the extremists to overwhelm the more reasonable freedom fighters (with Saudi finance) and you can see how Iraq becomes just a pawn in superpower rivalry. A lot of people will die because Putin wants to expand Russian influence elsewhere and the Saudi's wish to expand the Sunni region of influence. The very definition of collateral damage. Politics is a dangerous game.

King Juan Carlos abdicates in Spain after 39 years - now protests begin all over Spain for a Republic. (Forgetting that it was King Juan Carlos who saved them from a coup?)

Meanwhile Euro Poll Jitters

The People have spoken in 2014.  500 million of them had a chance to have their say on how they are governed in Europe.  It’s interesting to see the numbers before you dismiss the results as a ‘blip’ or a sign of an approaching apocalypse. Take your choice. From Belgium (where it is compulsory) 90% voted contrasting with Portugal and the UK on 34% (where it is voluntary) but I am somewhat surprised at Slovakia at just 13% and Finland at 19% and Poland a mere 22%  - thus the total average for Europe becomes 43.09% source: www.europarl.europa.eu

So more than half of Europe didn’t vote – didn’t have an opinion – didn’t care that all the billions are being squandered on vast salaries for eurocrats, or that rules are being hatched that will alter their lives and laws in every way possible by people you can’t actually vote out of office and we know to be corrupt or corruptable.  Interesting.

The vote garnered a lot of media attention of the headless chicken variety.  Then we get 'end of the world as we know it' So more than half of Europe didn’t vote – didn’t have an opinion – didn’t care that all the billions are being squandered on vast salaries for eurocrats, or that rules are being hatched that will alter their lives and laws in every way possible by people you can’t actually vote out of office and we know to be corrupt or corruptable.  Interesting.conclusions because the National Front won 25% of the vote in France. That’s 25% of a total 43% who bothered to vote. Put that way, a lot of people in France are not sufficiently interested in controlling their own fate. They don’t feel they have a stake in it or mistakenly believe their National Government actually has power to do something.  Yes that must be it.  People don’t realise just what power has already been transferred to Brussels.  They don’t understand that or don’t want to.
Perhaps they might heed this quote from Marine Le Pen: "I believe that the EU is like the Soviet Union now: it is not improvable. The EU will collapse like the Soviet Union collapsed.”

Should we worry that some openly fascist parties have seats in the EU parliament?  Or that the Ukip party from the UK are openly proud to take their salaries from the EU but not vote and do anything positive with their majority position to better their voters lives in the UK? Whether an extreme left or right, I suppose it is a good thing to know where the open sores are in society and who is exploiting them.  Will Golden Dawn in Greece actually start kicking open doors and dragging people or foreigners they don’t like out onto the streets to beat them to a pulp – one hopes not.  It won’t do the tourism business in Greece much good for starters.  Better they move to Strasbourg and kick coffee tables over there.  I rather like the idea of all the sort of people one doesn’t like having to move to Belgium for five years.  We are so much better off without them hanging around causing trouble at home.

It is easy to get worked up about elections and their results, but to be honest, look at the numbers – more than half the population, that’s near as damnit 300 million people, don’t give a damn.  Else they would have voted right? 

Will things change?  No.  Eurocrats will use the apathy to their advantage and the creeping control of EU centralisation will strangle everything in its wake. The far right parties won’t talk to each other because they accuse each other of being more racist than the other.  The extreme left will be sharpening blades to stab rivals in the backs and plan putsches.  The Eurocrats know this and will use divide and rule to get what they want.

Reform?  Not in this lifetime.  Reduce the farm subsidies?  No chance, it would mean the recipients have less to bribe them with and we wouldn’t want Luxembourg and the Caymans to go without, would we? Junker will win the Presidency and blithely ignore all the demands for reform and of course Seb Blatter - a symptom of all that is wrong in Europe - will continue to besmirch the reputation of the World Cup. You show me your backhand and I'll show you mine. Hey how do we get on this gravy train? Is there room for one more?

And as we squabble and build European grand follies – Putin plots for the total destruction of the West.  One day, when the wind isn’t blowing and we freeze in our over-priced homes for a lack of green energy (or Russian gas) – will we regret not taking voting seriously.  Will we be left urging the one working tank to mount our defence of our borders?

Suddenly glad I live on an island…. We can always flood the tunnel – can’t we? – Or would EU health and safety concerns for the invaders prevent our hands from turning the tap?  You already know the sad answer to that.

© Sam North  - Travel Editor June 2014
author of Diamonds The Rush of '72 and other novels

Do buy Sam's new book The Heaviness – suitable for any reader who likes to think about such things as betrayal, revenge, relationships and the laws of gravity.  All proceeds from our books go into keep Hacks going. All on Kindle.

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Smart, dark and graceful, this story is sure to send chills down your spine…’ Evie Seo
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