Democracy. A Brexit benefit.

The principal factor that sealed my vote in the Brexit referendum was that of the “democracy deficit”, so widely evident in the politics and accountability of the European Union. There is no academic analysis of this deficit that can adequately explain or motivate sufficient anger or concern as to make it a central feature of... Continue Reading →

Getting Angry about parties.

There were issues, throughout my life, that angered me, against which I campaigned, protested, marched, picketed wrote to politicians, sold socialist newspapers, and ranted about..  For years I was politically active, on the left, in trade unions, and in the Labour party. And God, there was much to be angry about.  Where do you begin?   ... Continue Reading →

Let Us Pray

I prefer the sound of Christian bells To the cry of the muezzin The sacred hymn to the sung adhan Rectors rather than imans  The steepled church to the minaret, The oaken pew to the woven mat But our gods are both the same.

Should I Confess?

Should I confess? should I? is it right for an old socialist?   Is it cool? The terrible truth is that I must admit to having enjoyed, enjoyed tremendously, the TV series, “Downton Abbey”.    There.  I’ve said it.  I have bared my soul. The storylines are wonderful.  There is class division, of course, there is class... Continue Reading →

A War Poem

Dulce et decorum est to wage a keyboard war Safe from guns and constant bombs Unsplashed by blood or gore From behind your desk no taste of fear, nor any risk Your shots are but Alt + Print Screen That you can post on Instagram, Tic Toc Facebook, or tweet  To ensure you will be... Continue Reading →

WATERLOO STATION

I was in the capital, traveling on the number 139 Bus, en route to London’s Borough market.  It required a  change at Waterloo, for the number 381.   For no particular reason I decided to go and have a look around Waterloo station, perhaps because, for me and thousands of other soldiers, it had been such... Continue Reading →

Spaghetti and diarrhea

Entrance to the Boar's Head public house and country hotel To a black-tie dinner at the rather pokey country house pub/hotel, the Boars Head at Ripley in Yorkshire, a place well overdue for a refurbishment. Mostly doctors. I have observed over the years that Doctors, when gathered together, a bit like lawyers or soldiers, tend... Continue Reading →

Surviving the U boat sinking of the RMS Laconia 12 September 1942

Gibraltar:  British families, survivors from the RMS Larconia, torpedoed by German U-Boat on the 12th September 1942 RMS Laconica was originally commissioned as an ocean-going luxury passenger ship for the Cunard line. With the outbreak of WWII she was requisitioned by the Admiralty and fitted with eight six inch guns and two three inch guns.... Continue Reading →

Boris, marriage, divorce and the Catholic Church

So twice divorced Boris re-married, in no less than the Catholic Westminster Cathedral, triggering a media manufactured storm of “controversy” over the legality, propriety and morality of the Catholic church allowing such a twice divorced man to re-marry in their principal English cathedral.   In fact, the rules of the church, in allowing such marriages  were... Continue Reading →

Pandemic Travel

To London.  First time for some eighteen months.    A little surreal.    Dublin airport virtually deserted with odd strangers wondering about in masks.   The queue for security scanning, usually a long tedious stretch, were moving fast, social distancing in place.  Just one of the great bank of scanners was in operation.    To be honest it was... Continue Reading →

Cranky old Man

This poem appeared on my facebook feed from my Austrailian friend Paul Halloran. It was so good that it demands to be shared. When an old man died in the geriatric ward of a nursing home in an Australian country town, it was believed that he had nothing left of any value. Later, when the... Continue Reading →

The Road to the Rising – The Big Personalities – Sir Roger Casement

Broadsides - A collection of bits and pieces

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The Road to the Rising was an RTE History Festival held on O’Connell Street in Dublin on Easter Monday the 6th April.  Over 50,000 people attended, dipping into and out of exhibits, street theatre, lectures, music, re-enactments and the screening of historical films.  The Big Personalities series of lectures were limited to 20 minutes for each of the speakers.  this is the talk on Roger Casement.

It is 1915. Sir Roger is in Germany, as a guest of Kaiser Wilhelm II and the Imperial German Government. He is engaged in a secret and dangerous mission on behalf of the Irish Republican Brotherhood. 1915 will not be his finest year but it is a year of great personal danger and risk.

He is not happy in Germany. He is isolated from the planning of the rebellion. He has no direct contact with Ireland and can only write and cable Dublin via America…

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The Last Remembrance

Powerful Stuff from Peter's Pondering. Chris decided long ago that he could no longer endure the Ceremony of Remembrance parades and services.  It was too much for him.  He knew that he would break down and weep copious tears, sobbing at all of the memories that he could not set aside.  He could never forget! Instead, each year,... Continue Reading →

Ave Verum Corpus

Loved this from allenriz Just had to reblog it. Ave Verum Corpus has often been described as one of the few perfect pieces of music ever written. It is a mere three minutes long and simple in musical structure but ranks among Mozart’s best works. Ave Verum Corpus (Hail, True Body), (K. 618), is a... Continue Reading →

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