Whenever I hear the phrase 'Party Leaders have made fresh calls for unity'
in a radio news bulletins it is a sure sign that the seeds of division
that were sown some time ago by party managers who were hoping
to bluff their way past a previous crisis in confidence have germinated.
And not just germinated but have reverted to type as older seeds of discontent,
the better to represent The needs of few who seek prolonged control over The Many....
When the greater part of Plan A is no plan at all,
then the first part of Plan B has to be the flat denial
that Plan A was nothing much in the first place.
Then Plan C can be what Plan A was all along
-offering as little help as possible
and dressing it up as something so grandiose
via generous portions of evasions and cliches
the better to deaden all awareness
of it not being what it seems,
and leave people so deep in debt
that they can never get out out of it.
I was among the first generation
for whom television was their childminder,
whilst our parents' attention span
was daily used up by domestic machinery.
I am not proud about this, it is just a fact.
That I was guided towards it by people
who were illiterate about how it worked
was one of many hurdles I had to negotiate,
along with their emotional illiteracy.
That I had/have to negotiate those hurdles
is something I was often painfully unaware of.
Never was this clearer
than when we were all forced
to watch the television wrestling
whilst we had our Saturday night fry.
Dad was drunk and insisted on the wrestling
because it was the loudest metaphor
for a hangover that humanly possible.
He was bad at pretending he was sober,
so we had to be better at pretending then he was
and better at being forgiving too.
Every week he left the table early
and gave the cat his expensive steak.
This is the cat he always played rough with
until it flex it claws and drew dad's blood.
There was no way out of these routines,
no way, safe or unsafe, of escaping.
The more we watched the more toxic the wrestling became,
until I felt caught in some unending internal conflict
that even now-forty years on-remains.
Nowadays I avoid television to escape false competition
and still competitions, both false and deadly serious, follow me.
When I was young enough to never knew better I became the store for other people's aggression, which was what I was required to be at the time.
When others removed my exit from them
they made it seem like I 'had no choice'
but to accept what ever they offered.
Equally when their defences developed gaps then I 'had no choice' but to leave, carrying with me the burdens they left me with, burdens I could not see that I was carrying. Now it seems I 'have no choice' to live with little sense of burden for having lived with so much in the past. I wonder what my next loss of choice will be....
was less his bisexuality when male homosexuality was known, but the words for it were too new, and taboo
and more that he did not complete more plays
that would unsentimentally unpick the false morals
that so hemmed in millions more men and women
who were similar to him for having choices that led to ruin.
I was taught to share what I had as I grew up,
though compared with others
what I had was truly unimpressive.
Indeed, I surely encouraged snobbery
through admitting how little I had.
And snobbery hides in competition
the way jealousy hides in ownership.
But for good and ill I made what I had seem right,
in spite of how the systems that created one winner
always created many more losers who had to hide
their conspicuous lack of success,
and had little to hide behind.
Being thoroughly repetitive,
and poor of speech and money,
my parents never rhapsodised
about their choices or mine,
or the 'what might have been's'
were we materially better off.
Mentoring was off their scale,
and altogether beyond their comprehension.
In the world they lived in giving of your means
was relatively easy, but nobody talked
about how time was shared or given.
Every market relies on the impression of freshness
whilst controlling it's customers by commodifying them.
Since commodification means degradation,
and the shallowing out of character,
then when will the consumer need
some personal renewal to retain their custom?
Where ever renewal comes from
it had better be more thorough for the customers
than the presentation of the goods that they buy;
even marketing has a sell-by-date,
after which it will not work and cannot be used.