Sunday, 20 November 2016

Whilst re-reading Roth's alternative history, The Plot Against America, I was reminded of Wendell Willkie (1892 - 1944), another outsider candidate who managed to get the Republican nomination for the 1940 election, despite being a Democrat less than a year previously.
He was for desegregation, the idea that became the UN, supporting the UK against Germany, education and healthcare.
He was a lone wolf, maverick type who was Roosevelt's personal contact with the Allies, who traveled across the globe meeting Churchill, Stalin, De Gaulle and others.
He represented William Schneiderman, a naturalised American who was stripped of his nationality due to not declaring that he was once a Communist. The Supreme Court supported Schneiderman and his citizenship was restored.
And he was very popular for doing so.
Willkie was the last Lincoln Republican and if honest Abe could see his party now he was be aghast - he would likely feel the same about the Democrats too - but he would be appalled.

Saturday, 19 November 2016

I just got the urge to write something on this blog

I just got the urge to write something on this blog, something I haven’t done in a very long while and I am not sure why I wanted to do so.

My mate Stan once said that the British do pensive well and all our Brit Movies start with the hero being pensive, smoking a fag whilst look out the window, that kind of stuff. I have to admit to a real wave of pensiveness right now as I sit having a coffee, it feels like a colossal burden and emotional tide rolled into one and I am both hyper aware of my surroundings and yet feel utter inarticulate in my ability to describe them.

There are people, there is music, families and those alone, reading and wazzocks like me tapping away on a computer and it is unremarkable in every way and yet, somehow, I am having an emotional response to the environment. Digging deeper, I don’t feel unhappy the opposite in fact and I do not feel dislocated, or alone – I am not speaking to anyone and not really observing the human zoon like I normally do and yet I feel, lucky? Is lucky the word? Maybe not lucky, but strangely calm and accepting, maybe this is just my idea of Valhalla only it is not a literal afterlife but perhaps the one I chose to enter now and again whilst still be alive.

That suggests I may find life a burden in some way, plodding, perhaps? Do I find it unnecessarily harsh at time and unfair? I don’t know if I can say that because this pensive, calm and accepting feeling happens more often than not, sometimes it is walking around London, Bloomsbury mostly, on a sunny day and looking up, closing my eyes and feeling the sun on my face – I love to do that. Sometimes it is sitting in a library and doing my job, sometimes it is in the middle of nowhere, sitting down and looking around. Right now, it is just nice to sit where I am – I think I might just stay a while longer.