I wear two hats when I write this blog of mine. First and foremost, I manage a small charity in a small Scottish town called Dumfries. Ours is a front door that opens onto the darker corners of the crumbling world that is Britain 2015. We hand out 5000 emergency food parcels a year in a town that is home to 50,000 souls. Then, as you can see from all of the book covers above, I am also a thriller writer. If you enjoy the blog, you might just enjoy the books. The link below takes you to the whole library in the Kindle store. They can be had for a couple of quid each.

Friday, July 1, 2016


I have always found it an interesting exercise to imagine how the times we live in will look in a hundred years time. When I did this the other day, it occurred to me that we are living through one of the greatest turning points in the whole of human history. Right now. Dramatic stuff, right? The funny thing is that absolutely nobody is talking about it.

Let's take a glance into a crystal ball and imagine what might be going down a year from now. The whole EU disengagement process will be well and truly under way. The news will show Prime Minister Teresa May arriving Berlin alongside her Secretary of State for Brexit, Angela Leadsom. Waiting to meet them for formal handshakes and photographs is the Chancellor of Germany, Angela Merkel. In the background, voices from home are snapping at May and Leadsom's heels. Scotland's First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon is well along with the task of easing her people towards the UK exit door. In Belfast, First Minister Arlene Forster demands that the border question is properly addressed. Trade Union Congress leader Francis O'Grady and Labour leader Angela Eagle angrily insist that the rights of British workers must not be forgotten. Meanwhile other voices urge the Brits and Germans to make nice for the sake of the world's economic stability. Christine Lagarde tells it as it is as far as the IMF are concerned. President Hilary Clinton speaks out for the Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave...

Get the picture? Sure you do. Here are the most powerful people in the world and every last once of them is a woman. Fair enough, one or two of these predictions might not come true, but then again my fictional scenario it is far from inconceivable.

What does it mean? I reckon it means that after many thousands of years human beings have finally caught up with nature. Cast your mind back to one of those documentaries we have all watched about a pride of lions on the Serengeti plains. What is the role of the females? Basically they call all the shots. They run the railroad. They do the hunting. They determine who gets to eat first and how much. They decide whether or not the pride should move on or stay put. They sort out the cubs and oversee the training of the coming generation. And the male? Well he doesn't hunt and has no say in the day to day running of the pride. He is kind off of to one side looking vaguely grumpy about life and he tends to get even grumpier when the cubs come over to him to take the piss. He gets to eat when the female bosses allow him to eat.

In fact the poor old sod only has two roles in life. To breed the next generation and to fight off other males who come along to challenge his territory.

And this is how things work in just about every mammal society. For some reason human beings have bucked this trend and for thousands of years it has been the males of the species who have called all the shots. When you think about it, that is exactly what they have done in the most literal sense. Called shots. Waged war. Allowed their testosterone fueled urges to wreak centuries worth of havoc.

So why have we chosen such a different course from the rest of our fellow mammals? Is it because our human males are so much stronger than the males in other groups of mammals? I don't think so. Try going up to an eighty stone silverback gorilla and tell him he is a weakling. Instead we have justified the top dog status of our males through a long list of completely artificial rules. Basically, religious rules. Woman have been deemed to be inferior by most of the world's religions. Islamic women are required to hide their faces from all but their husbands whilst Christian women are not allowed to aspire to become bishops. It has mainly been religious rules which have backed up decisions like depriving women of the vote or the right to fight in the front line of shooting wars. Once you get away from all the biblical/Koranic tosh, none of this stuff stands up to any kind of scrutiny. Who would you prefer to have beside you in the trenches when the bad guys are coming at you – Jess Ennis or the overweight bloke from the Post Office who smokes forty a day?

All the stuff about the 'fair' sex who are so weak and need so much looking after has always been bollocks and slowly but surely as the centuries have rolled by it has been exposed as exactly that. The odd thing is how hard society finds it to admit it. Not many people were able withstand Gestapo torture. Not a single one of this extraordinary group was male. Every single one was female. Fairer sex? Aye right. Tough as old boot leather more like. When it comes to dealing with the outer extremes of pain, women are Premier League to our male Championship. This is hardly surprising of course. They have to give birth: we don't. It makes a lot of logical evolutionary sense for them to be well and truly harder and braver than we are.

Over the last hundred years or so, the grip of religion has become ever weaker all across the western world. Over the same period, law after law has been passed to move us closer to gender equality, both in the home and the work place. Once this equality has been granted, the female side of our species has hit the outside lane of the track and run past us males as if we weren't there. The gap is becoming wider with every passing year. Check out the A level results when they come out. The girls are pulling so far ahead of the lads that it is almost impossible to ignore any more. A couple of months ago we were visited by some students from the University Of Georgia State. I asked about this. Last year 70% of new admissions were female. This year it was on target to be 75%. The university authorities are worried about it and planning to introduce some king of positive discrimination for lads. Imagine it. If you are female and you want to come our university, you need at least three straight A's. If you are male, three B's will be plenty.

It is worth looking at the craziness of the post Brexit world as if it was one of those Serengeti lion documentaries. Look at idiotic, strutting behaviour of the males. Corbyn and Cameron and Farage and Johnson, wounded old lions roaring in anger at being removed from their place in the pack. Lots of noise and not a drop either calmness or basic common sense. They have been so hell bent on winning their pathetic turf wars they have neither noticed nor cared that the country is going to hell in a handcart. And once the crisis threatened to become overwhelming, they ran and hid like utter cowards.

And then? Then all of a sudden we started to hear calm female voices fill the void. Female voices with carefully thought through plans for clearing up the mess created by all the vanity and testosterone. Maybe we agree with these plans, maybe we don't. But at least there is some competence and courage. Now that the lionesses are taking charge of the situation, things are slowly but surely becoming less chaotic.

So what will happen now we have finally arrived at this historic tipping point? I think for those of us lucky enough to live in the liberal West, it is all good news. Less war and more carefully thought out government. What's there not to like? Sadly this will only be half of the story. We will become ever more divided from vast areas of the rest of humanity. There is no sign of girls losing their second class status in places where totalitarian regimes call the shots or where the bullying voice of Islam or Catholicism drowns out all others.

We are entering a whole new epoch. It will be the Venus of the West against the Mars of the rest. For what it's worth, my money is well and truly on Venus.

Two and a half thousand years ago a really, really smart guy from Ancient Greece saw all of this coming. He was Socrates. And here is what he said.

'Once made equal to man, woman becomes his superior.'

Smart cookie!

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