DIVERSITY, INGENUITY AND PRIVACY UNDER A CLOUD

In my recent post: ‘In a World at the Edge - Can Poets Still Wander with the Clouds?’ I bewailed the onslaught of trivia, spin and ‘hasbara’ [subtle persistent propaganda] that is subverting conversation in both the Old and New Media - and the ‘Twilight of the Iguana’ that is descending on rational discourse and public policy as ruthless populist oligarchy becomes predominant:

What is now evident from the obscene accumulation of wealth in few hands is that unfettered markets breed unbounded rent-seeking and that the rich are motivated to seek power rather than acquiesce to sharing economic benefits with the many – such that there are strong motivations for the rich to subvert social democracy in their own interests.

WE'RE OUT AUSTRALIA SQUARE

Australians all let us rejoice,

For we are young and twee:

Let's turn the other cheek in manly choice

So grin and grab my jocks - feel free.

Our team abounds in nature’s jewels

And seats both ripe and rare -

In cricket’s page, the leg-by rules

We're Out Australia Square!

As spandex strains then let us sing,

We're Out Australia Square!

Feel free my mates to give a toss

And roll your roving hands

To make this cricket team of ours

Renowned of all the lands.

NATIONAL PRESIDES OVER CATASTROPHIC DECLINE IN NZ HEALTH RANKINGS

New Zealanders are prone to congratulating themselves on the quality of their health system. And in particular, they bask in the sunny opinion that it is much superior to Britain’s National Health System.

Not so it seems – and the New Zealand system has suffered a precipitous decline in relative quality, efficiency and effectiveness over the last decade.

On the Centenary of the Death of Rosenberg’s Rat

I      Cosmopolitan Sympathies

Being of follower of Tom Paine -

Like Rosenberg’s Rat

I have cosmopolitan sympathies.

No doubt Remy would have said:

‘The world is my country

To be a rat is my condition’

Though in its squeak

There would have doubtless been:

“Un peu de sarcasme – Monsieur”

[In an attempt to engage obliquely

We idealists feign the droll and sardonic].

ANYONE WHO HAD A HEART WOULD TWEET ME LIKE I TWEET YOU

My article of 21st January ‘Is Idealistic Blogging past its Sell-By Date?’ starts:

‘In the best of all possible worlds, there is an open market for information within which individuals naturally select the facts and inferences that are necessary to sustain a moral civic society.

CYBER NYMPHS

Contracted to our brief demanding view

Youth and beauty pass in bright procession

And in perfection is this world untrue

As thumbnails click in scant obsession.

Fold of golden apricot and blush of peach

A hint of downy light on spray-tanned skin

Seemingly awakening to a touch

As dawdled fingers to the left breast run.

AUSSIES – DO YOU HAVE TO BE SUCH PRICKS?

Just as there are no atheists in a sinking ship, there are no cosmopolitans when the home team is winning. But as a former Englishman who has been in New Zealand for 25 years and who had, in a previous spell, spent 7 very happy years in Australia, I have had problems in the past in shaking off old allegiances in international cricket.

The rule of thumb in New Zealand is to support NZ and any team playing against the Australians.

LOVE GROWS WHERE MY ROSEMARY GOES

That I am prone to strange infatuations seems undeniable to anyone who has followed my amatory career over the last half century – just ask my sister. And none more strange and hopeless than me playing Donkey Bottom to Rosemary McLeod’s Titania [unreciprocated of course as there has been no Puck to tragically enchant her].

And I even went so far as to obtain a copy of Rosemary’s only novel [as far as I know] ‘A Girl Like I’.

HAERE MAI ... HAERE MAI PICCALILY

As something of a living fossil myself and one that has been transplanted from Cheshire to New Zealand and bred successfully, I was delighted to learn that Chester Zoo’s tuatara couple Pixie and Mustard have got it together in my homeland and produced a unique extra-NZ offspring. It’s a girl and my suggestion for her name is ‘Piccalily’ [Piccalilli is a mustard-flavoured pickle that is popular in Northern England].

INDISCIPLINE AND INSUBORDINATION DOG WELLINGTON CITY COUNCIL

It’s good to be on the same page as smart, decent people.
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