I have spent the last few day consumed with jealousy. I guess every writer on earth must be feeling much the same. Why? Simple. In a nutshell it goes something like this:
Michael Wolff - oh you lucky bastard.
Just in case you have been living under a rock in the middle of the Kalahari desert for the last week or so, Michael Wolff is the lucky bastard who penned 'Fire and Fury'.
When his publishers brought forward the release date of the book to trump the 'cease and desist' efforts of Trump's lawyers, I eagerly hopped onto Audible to download a talking version and his words have been pouring through my headphones ever since. It took about ten minutes of listening for me to be well and truly hooked and duty bound to get onto Amazon to order up a copy for Carol.
And here is where the jealousy really kicked in. New book, only available in hardback. There are rules of thumb for this kind of thing. Cover price, £20. Amazon price, £10. Kindle price, usually about £7. Well that is how things generally pan out. Well not this time. Cover price, £20. Amazon price, £17. Kindle price £14. Bloody hell. A lousy £3 discount. But there was more to come. I whacked a copy into my basket and hit checkout only to be told there wasn't a book to be had and I would have to wait in line with God knows how many others whilst the print presses glowed red with the effort of keeping up with demand.
Like I said. Lucky bastard! Soon YouTube was full of pictures of midnight mobs milling around American bookshops. Never in the history of pen being put to paper has anyone ever made it so big by sitting on a sofa and not being noticed. So it's hats off I guess. And raging jealousy. At least the whole thing offers proof positive that there is plenty of power still to be found in the pen.
For a couple of years President Xchi Jinping of China was feeling a degree of heat. Hundreds of millions of his minions were showing signs of restlessness. Kentucky chicken and cheap TV sets were all well and good but they were starting get a craving for the odd pinch of democracy here and there. For a while Xchi started to reconcile himself to the idea. And then one by one, the electorates of the West started to collectively lose their marbles and a small grin appeared on the face of Mr Inscrutable.
Come on guys. You're all telling me I should stump up some democracy. Really? Have you been watching that shiny new TV of yours? I think you need to realise what democracy gets you. It's called Trump and Brexit. Is that really what you want.....
And of course all those hundreds of millions of smart Chinamen recoiled in horror at the very idea of their country becoming a laughing stock and duly dumped the idea firmly in the bin. There is no talk of more democracy in China any more. They've got the message. They have seem how a totalitarian outfit can crack on and build a hundred new airports in the time it takes the British Government make its mind up about where to build one new runway. Not actually build the thing by the way.
'Fire and Fury' completes the case Xchi has been making for years. The dream of Aristotle has morphed into a surreal nightmare where millions of supposedly sane people choose to send an illiterate idiot into the job of being the most powerful man in the world.
Of course Trump's swaggering idiocy will always eat up every minute the media has available to put on our plate. Who would ever have thought the President of the 'Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave' could manage to make Homer Simpson look like a smart and canny sort of a guy.
Are we any better? Hardly. We are just less spectacular when it comes to our car crashing. I suppose we never could keep up with Hollywood in that regard. In terms of complete, irresponsible incompetence we are right up there with the Donald and his cronies.
Check out this week's pitiful Cabinet re-shuffle. Downing St briefed out there were going to be more women around the table offering proof the Tories were better than a creaking shell company fronting up for a dwindling bunch of octogenarian racists and a bunch of tax dodging hedge fund types.
Things didn't take long to go well and truly south. Justine Greening spat the dummy and told her Prime Minister she could shove the Department of Pensions where the sun didn't shine and resigned. Which meant Mrs May had lost a comprehensive educated lesbian from Rotherham and a vital plank in her bid to portray the Tories as a modern and human.
Shit, shit, shit, SHIT........
We need more women! Any women. Just find me one. We promised to unveil a better look....... We promised a fucking photo!!!
Well boss, how's about this. We bin off the Immigration Minister and give the job to a woman. Then we spin a line. Something like this. Brexit means Immigration is big news, right? I mean fucking huge, yeah? So huge that the Immigration Minister needs to sit in on cabinet meetings. Yeah? See where I'm going here.... It means another pair of high heels in the photo opportunity....
I think I like it....
Anyone in mind.....
Not really. Who gives a shit really. It just needs to be a genuine female. Christ, I don't know. What about Caroline Nokes? She's a safe pair of hands. Quiet as a mouse and always does as she's told.
You sure about that. I don't want another Anna fucking Soubry....
No. She's fine. True Blue and loyal. Wouldn't say boo to a goose.
And she's a woman.
100%. To the core.
Sod it. Get her on the phone.... does she know anything about immigration?
I haven't a Scooby. She's from Kent so she's probably pissed of with too many towel heads hiding in the back of trucks.
She was Chief Executive of the Pony Club....
For fuck's sake.... anyway we're all out of time. Just get her on the bloody phone..
And so here we are. Hundreds of thousands of foreign nationals are living in a constant state of gnawing fear whilst the Home Office grinds slowly to a halt and in order to get enough females into a photo opportunity around the Cabinet Table we now have the former chief executive of the Pony Club as the person tasked with steering the post Brexit immigration policy.
This pathetic pantomime is all too similar to the even more pathetic pantomime which gets played out every single day in the White House. Every time Trump Tweets out yet another burst of vicious bile we wonder how on earth 30% of Americans can continue to support him.
Well fair enough, but it is hard not to be drawn to the words pot, kettle and black. We Scots are supposed to be an instinctively canny bunch and yet 50% of us continue to sign on to the belief that it is a great thing to be ruled by these inept clowns in Westminster.
A couple of days ago Dr Philippa Whitford MP threw a statistic down onto the floor of the House of Commons which really shouldn't have been to hard for even the very stupidest voter to understand: in Scotland we have 4 NHS beds per 1000 head of population. In England they have 2.3 NHS beds per 1000 head of population. It's why our A&E waiting times are so much shorter. It's why our treatment is so much better. Why is this? Do we have a whole lot more cash to spend that they have south of the border? No. What we do is spend all the cash on the NHS rather than siphoning it into the grasping hands of the private sector.
This kind of story is replicated in almost every areas where we are allowed to govern ourselves.
And yet we still have 50% of our people blindly signing on the dotted line to be screwed by London for ever and ever amen.
So we do not have any right to laugh at the Americans who continue to cheer lead Trump. We Scots of course are deemed far too simple and child-like to be allowed to make our own decisions about immigration. Immigration is a big boys issue which is way above our meagre abilities. Much better we leave this issue in the hands of the great Caroline Nokes MP, ex British Pony Club.
Holy bloody Christ.
So go on Xchi. I know you are duty bound to keep up the inscrutable Asian thing, but I think it would be OK if you let that small smile widen just a tad.
We really are truly laughable.