March 1st, 2013


After Eastleigh

The Tories got pushed into third place by UKIP which is bad news for Mr Cameron. I don't suppose it's particularly good news for UKIP either because if they can't win in a Southern by-election- with both coalition parties struggling in the polls and being torn apart in the media- where can they win? The Lib Dems hung onto the seat which is good news for Mr Clegg who would have been toast if they'd lost it. But the win isn't attributable to him- he had to be surrounded by a praetorian guard and kept away from the public when he visited the constituency- but a tribute to the strength of the party on the ground. Labour came nowhere- which was expected. Next time they choose a comedian as their candidate let it be a funny one.

I ask myself how much I care about any of this and it isn't much. I no longer believe it makes any great difference which party is notionally running things.  Real power resides elsewhere- with the bankers, with the corporations, with the media barons, with the Brussels bureaucracy, with Washington. I'm interested in democracy out of habit. 


Oh good, it's March. I always like it when February is done and dusted.

I saw snowdrops the other day. A whole field full of them- planted along the edge of Ashton Road.

BBC 4 aired a documentary about the Voyager programme last night. I'm moved by the thought of those two funny little spacecraft (with their primitive 1970s computer brains) heading out beyond the reach of the solar wind into what we assume is empty space. They have served us so well. Their next encounter with anything solid (unless some ET mothership gathers them in) will be in 40 (or was it 400?) thousand years time.

The pigeons get bolder. This morning they were waiting for me on the ridge tiles of the shed roof. They took to the air and flapped round my ears, impatient for me to scatter the food and go.