So many important stories

There is so much to write about at the moment and yet the newspapers are focused on the most astonishing rubbish while the real issues are cast aside barely touched.

This morning, there was a debate about Boris on holiday and almost every channel in the UK managed to present the piece with a bias that was quite astonishing. While I am equally disappointed in Boris, he is not the story today and this nonsensical quipping takes the pressure off the real issue which must still be Gavin Williamson and his weasel determination to cling on.

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Outside the UK, Alexei Navalny appears to have been poisoned. That would be news enough and scary for everyone else but it gets much worse: a medical plane to take him for superior and probably life-saving treatment in Germany is unable to do its job as police and armed guards keep Navalny away from his family and effectively imprisoned in an under-equipped hospital in Omsk in Siberia. It is the stuff of nightmares.

Meanwhile, I had a chat with Steve Brookstein who was the first to win X factor last night and later I checked him out on youtube. I was flabberghasted at the nastiness of Sharon Osbourne and will certainly look at her differently from now on. Steve’s story is painful as was Rich Hatch’s (Rich was the first winner of the American Reality show “Survivor” and I have spent the last 12 weeks watching that show episoed by episode and then podcasting about it.). I begin to fear that the whole Reality tv phenomenon, which is certainly likely to continue because it is cheap to make, is shot through with a sort of nastiness that I cannot ever and will not condone.

I think the sniping about Boris on holiday belongs to the same genre. We should really remember the advice in the Disney film, BAMBI- “If you’ve not got something nice to say, don’t say anything at all.”

 

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Alexei Navalny

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Just looking at reports this afternoon which are alarming indeed. Navalny’s effective bid 4 days’ ago to wobble the “United Russia” ruling Party’s overall majority in the Russian Duma has been met with a speed, scope and national ferocity that he says could only have been orchestrated by Putin himself. He says “the state has two tasks- to frighten and to steal.” Today, homes of those connected with his opposition party were raided in searches now spread across 36 towns and cities. The police carrying out these raids are masked and asked reporters to stop filming. Ironically, the excuse for the raids was given as alleged corruption in Navalny’s “Anti-corruption foundation”.

Facebook and google were directly accused by the Government of interference in the elections.

Navalny, who had encouraged tactical voting in the election after many of his own party’s candidates were barred from standing, says he is used to fighting and that he won’t give up against “crooks and thieves”. There will be national and presidential elections in 2012 so the atmosphere is unlikely to get any better in the near future but evidently the opposition is mobilised and will not go away.

Therefore, poor old Putin may soon have to put on his glasses and read the smallprint more carefully- oh! But wait: he has been told it would be “unmanly” to be seen in public wearing his glasses. Pasha, Verni, Buffy and Yummi must be barking mad at the thought that their master might ever have his eyesight questioned, let alone his judgement.