Posts Tagged ‘UK’

Bertram Russell’s Grandfather

August 11, 2022

Your grandparents may remember Bertram Russell (1872 –1970), British philosopher, logician, and social critic. He remembers his own grandfather, who met Napoleon, in this 1952 interview.

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Royal Veterinary College: ‘Don’t Buy a Bulldog’

July 21, 2022

Royal Veterinary College: 'Don't Buy a Bulldog'

The English bulldog has become a four-footed symbol of British determination, and this intensified during WWII due to the canine breed’s resemblance to saggy-jowled wartime PM Winston Churchill. There must be shock in the Sceptered Isle over the UK’s Royal Veterinary College recommendation that animal lovers stop buying English bulldogs. The poor pups are plagued by health issues — breathing, skin, eye, and tooth problems — caused by breeding practices. The warning applies to other pups with punched-in faces, French bulldogs and pugs.

More:

“Dog health: Don’t buy a bulldog until breed is reshaped, vets plead,” Helen Briggs, BBC News

“English Bulldogs in the UK: a VetCompass study of their disorder predispositions and protections,” Dan G. O’Neill, Alison Skipper, Rowena M. A. Packer, et al., Canine Medicine and Genetics

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Top image: U.S. Marines Mascot Lance Cpl. Chesty XIV at the 2013 Barracks Row Fall Festival, Washington DC. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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Bye Bye Boris

July 18, 2022

UK commentator Jonathan Pie gives a proper “Ta ta!” to Tory Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

Jonathan Pie website

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Boris Quit, But Won’t Leave. Here’s Why.

July 8, 2022

Boris Quit, But Won't Leave. Here's Why.

Tory buffoon and UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson quit, but he’s staying on as a “caretaker”until his Conservative Party chooses a new PM in September or October. When a PM quits, he or she may choose a senior party member to act as interim PM so the stench of a rotting administration doesn’t waft out of Number 10 and pervade Downing Street.

And many Tories have been proposed as caretaker Prime Ministers, and the list ranges from Deputy Prime Minister Dominic Raab to Theresa May to Peppa Pig, but Mr. Johnson insists on extending his odious administration into autumn. The reason? He’s scheduled a lavish wedding reception for himself and Carrie, the mother of his last two children, on July 30th at Chequers, the Prime Minister’s official country estate. And we all know Boris loves a good party.

More:

“Boris Johnson plans July wedding party with Carrie at Chequers,” Jessica Elgot, The Guardian

“UK Conservatives say ‘toxic’ Boris Johnson should be replaced now,” Andrew Macaskill, Reuters

“Boris Johnson’s plans to remain as PM are ‘unwise’ and ‘unsustainable’, warns Sir John Major,” Sky News

“Boris Johnson will cause ‘carnage’ if allowed to stay on as caretaker prime minister, Dominic Cummings says,” Mary Bulman, The Independent

“Boris staying on until October would be like PM ‘working with own firing squad,’” Josh Layton, The Scotsman

Related:

“Who wants to be UK prime minister? Just about everyone.” Cristina Gallardo, Politico

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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UPDATED: Monty Python Clown PM Boris Johnson Scrambling

July 7, 2022

Monty Python Clown PM Boris Johnson Scrambling
After his boozy parties at 10 Downing Street during COVID lockdown, turning a blind eye to sexual misconduct allegations against one of his top Tory officials, and the mass resignations of his administration’s cabinet ministers and officials, Boris Johhnson refuses to resign. If you’re asking why, you’ve mistaken Mr. Johnson with someone with an ounce of shame.

More:

“Boris Johnson’s tenure has been defined by scandal. Here are some of the biggest ones,” Ivana Kottasová and Tara Subramaniam, CNN

“Boris Johnson Freaks Out After Giuliani Arrives in London to Help Him,” Andy Borowitz, The New Yorker

“Boris Johnson and wife Carrie to host lavish Chequers wedding party while he clings on,” Pippa Crerar, Daily Mirror

UPDATE:

Saying “Them’s the breaks,” Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson joined the ranks of unemployed New-York-born television novelty performers. Maybe he’ll move to Mar-a-Lago.

“Boris Johnson resigns as UK prime minister,” Jen Kirby, Vox

“Boris Johnson resigns: Five things that led to the PM’s downfall,” Owen Amos, BBC News

“British Lawmaker’s Live Analysis of Boris Johnson’s Resignation Drowned Out by ‘Benny Hill’ Theme Music,” Dan Ladden-Hall, Daily Beast

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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Platinum Jubilee

June 2, 2022

The United Kingdom’s Queen Elizabeth II is celebrating her Platinum Jubilee, commemorating 70 years on the throne. The Sex Pistols are observing this milestone by re-releasing their 1977 hit record “God Bless the Queen,” originally released on Liz’s 25-year Silver Jubilee. Back then the disk blew up the charts despite being banned from the nation’s radio airwaves.

The Pistols aren’t the only platinum profiteers. Brits are buying over $350 million in Jubilee merch and memorabilia. Add that to the unknown millions in public funds spent on 3,517 public events and the cost of lost labor during the two-day national holiday, you’re talking heavy pound sterling poundage.

More:

“Sex Pistols aim to give queen’s jubilee a touch of punk,” Jill Lawless, Associated Press

“Brits to celebrate Queen’s Jubilee by spending millions on royal memorabilia,” Joanna York, France 24

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Food Court

May 24, 2022

John Oliver puts British Cuisine on trial.

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Putin’s Oligarchs Launder Money in London

April 7, 2022

Oliver Bullough explains how Russian oligarchs launder money in London.

More:

“Boris Johnson claims the UK is rooting out dirty Russian money. That’s ludicrous,” Oliver Bullough, The Guardian

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The Party’s Over: No. 10’s COVID BYOB Affair

January 13, 2022

Above: Dame Shirley Bassey delivers the news.

Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson, British/American stand-up comediancricketer, and former London Lord Mayor, the Monty Python character currently serving as UK Prime Minister, is well in it for a spingtime garden party at his current abode, No. 10 Downing Street. It was a “bring your own bottle” party for staff. Very plesant-sounding. So why is everyone giving him stick?

The boozy party was on May 20, 2020, during a COVID lockdown strickly limiting outdoor gatherings and imposing fines up to £10,000 ($13,715) on violators. On that same day, there were 328 COVID-related deaths in the UK.

Mr. Johnson apologized before Parliament, but “Partygate” might be the scandal that finally gets BoJo made redundant and booted from office.

More:

“‘The party’s over, Boris’: what the papers say about Johnson’s No 10 crisis,” Graham Russell, The Guardian

“What next for Boris Johnson after his party apology?” Laura Kuenssberg, BBC News

Updates:

“Boris Johnson’s staff accused of more rule-breaking parties inside No 10,” BBC News

“On eve of Prince Philip’s funeral, Downing Street held lockdown parties,” Karla Adam, Washington Post

“Met police accused over failure to investigate No 10 lockdown parties,” Vikram Dodd, The Guardian

“Nobody warned me drinks event was against rules – Boris Johnson,” BBC News

“‘In the Name of God, Go’: Boris Johnson Told to Resign Over Boozy Lockdown Parties,” Jamie Ross, Daily Beast

Updated Updates:

“Boris Johnson ‘birthday bash’ added to list of alleged lockdown parties,” William Booth, Washington Post

“London police to investigate Downing Street parties during lockdown, raising stakes for Boris Johnson,” William Booth, Washington Post

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Christmas is Cancelled

December 27, 2021

“Christmas is Cancelled,” by The Long Blondes (vocalist: Kate Jackson). The lyrics (possibly by guitarist Dorian Cox) are here.

The band distributed free recordings of the song soon after they broke up in December 2008.

Related:

“Why music will miss the Long Blondes,” Priya Elan, The Guardian

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