Two-faced Europe

EUR_OPEI had an idea for a cartoon (right) that showed two faces of Europe. On the top, a stream of Syrian refugees/immigrants – some wearing burqas, with jihadis and suicide bombers mixed in – are stepping off a boat and being welcomed and invited inside the house of Europe. And below European smokers are being told to go away – get out -, and one can be seen falling into a ditch.

It might have been better if the two pictures had been combined into a single image, with a stream of people entering from the left, and departing to the right. Either way, a little cartoon like this might make the point of who’s welcome and who isn’t, for the political class at least.

Anyway it seemed to capture a couple of truths about Europe, one highly topical and the subject of intense discussion, the other completely ignored and invisible – but both, I think, equally divisive, and equally mad.

For it is madness to invite tens of millions of Syrian refugees into Europe, while exiling many more tens of millions of native Europeans to the outdoors.

For the effect of both is socially and culturally shattering.

Do they know what they’re doing? Sometimes I wonder if they do, and it’s all perfectly deliberate, because Merkel and Hollande and Cameron are all secret converts to Islam or something, as well as being agents of Tobacco Control. But mostly I don’t think they have the first clue what they’re doing, given reports like this:

EU could go UNDER in 6 WEEKS, Dutch PM claims as France admits ‘we weren’t built for this’

THE Dutch prime minister said the future of the European Union could be decided in just six weeks if the bloc doesn’t get a handle on the migrant crisis, as panicking France begs Britain to stay in the union.

Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte gave the EU the deadline to get a handle on the influx of refugees from conflict zones in the Middle East and elsewhere – or face the bloc breaking up.

He told a panel on Europe at the World Economic Forum in Davos: “We have six to eight weeks.”

Meanwhile French prime minister Manuel Valls admitted the EU “could very well break up in a very short time”.

And I can well believe it. It may well be that the EU disintegrates before Britain votes on whether or not to stay inside it.

I sometimes think that I am a refugee too. I am, after all, one of the European smokers who have been exiled to the outdoors. And if Spain hadn’t introduced its own smoking ban in 2011, I might well have been living in Spain right now, as a refugee from totalitarian, antismoking Britain. In the end I decided it was better to be a refugee in totalitarian, antismoking Britain than in totalitarian, antismoking Spain – if only because I can speak one language much better than the other.

For I am also a refugee within Britain. I am a refugee within my own country. I used to live in a ‘progressive’ metropolitan city, and I had lots of friends. But since my ‘progressive’ friends started banning smoking in their own homes, and the government imposed a country-wide smoking ban as well, I’ve moved out into the depths of the conservative English countryside. Round here, as far as I can make out, everybody is ex-army or ex-navy. Which is probably a good thing: they’ll all know how to use rifles.

P.S. RIP Lysistrata.

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About Frank Davis

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24 Responses to Two-faced Europe

  1. cherie79 says:

    Frank I was so worried about Carol, Lydistrata, I had not heard anything since November and emails went unanswered so I feared the worse. Deeply sorry to hear the news but at least now I know, thank you. RIP she tried so hard to beat it.

  2. Reinhold says:

    Deeply sorry to hear the news

    So am I.

    :-(((

  3. Harleyrider1978 says:

    The EU was DOA the day they thought it up!

  4. Smoking Lamp says:

    The ‘progressive’ desire for smoking bans isn’t shared by the public progressives claim to advocate for. A good example is the depth of opposition to smoking bans (which of course is censored by the progressive elites.

    Just today, the results of a poll in Michigan show broad support to relaxing that state’s smoking ban, with 86% want a compromise on Michigan’s statewide smoking ban, according to a recent poll conducted by Ban the Ban Michigan”. – See more at: http://prmediarelease.com/poll-most-want-compromise-on-michigan-smoking-ban/#sthash.jY3fABuQ.dpuf

  5. cherie79 says:

    Frank, do you know when Carol died? I would like to post on the lung cancer site we both belonged to let other members know. Thank you.

    • John Watson says:

      Carol passed away peacefully, in her sleep last night according to her family. She was a friend, and one of the warmest human beings I have ever known. Carol will be greatly missed both those who knew her and by those whose lives she touched. I see her sitting at a table, a glass of Ouzo and a smoke burning exercising the charm and wit which she was renowned for.

      • cherie79 says:

        Thank you, the last pictures she sent were just how you described her, so glad she made Christmas. I will miss her emails we were definitely kindred spirits, funny we got in touch via the cancer site then found we ‘knew’ each other through the blogs we followed, small world indeed, hope she is having a drink, smoke and a laugh with Captain Ranty now.

    • Frank Davis says:

      I heard the news last night (Monday night) just after I’d published the above blog. I heard it on Facebook She died peacefully the previous night – i.e. Sunday night. She said a few weeks back that she was unwell.

      I knew her best from meeting her on Skype a few years back. And she also contributed to the ISIS survey.

  6. Harleyrider1978 says:

    Funny Frank I’m one of the few who served in the army first then the navy.

  7. Lepercolonist says:

    Love the cartoon. We will miss Carol, RIP.

  8. Rose says:

    I only spoke to Lysistrata. once or twice on this blog, I must have missed knowing a wonderful person.

    • prog says:

      Carol was a close friend who we’d met via F2C, she visited us on on several occasions – and we (esp my other half Karen) spent many hours drinking, smoking and putting the world to right Yes, a lovely, fun loving lady who”ll be sorely missed.

      • cherie79 says:

        There are lots of lovely comments on the cancer site, Carol wasn’t on a lot but everyone remembered her wonderful sense of humour.

  9. junican says:

    Carol and I communicated via email from time to time. So sorry to hear the news.

  10. junican says:

    It makes you wonder what would have happened regarding the ‘refugees’ had the EU not existed. Would Africans still have poured across the Med to Italy in leaky boats? Would Arabs have poured into Greece and Turkey? How would those individual countries have handled it? I can’t help but feel that their armies, navies and air-forces would have been deployed in full strength to repel the invasions; that the ‘refugees’ would have been returned to their place of departure and the leaky boats confiscated and sunk.

  11. Dr Evil says:

    Try buying or owning a decent rifle (I mean of a bigger calibre than 0.22, which is still a long winded farce itself). The bureaucracy and hoop jumping through is insane.

  12. Rose says:

    Cranes, tug boats, excavators and an awful lot of mud: latest River Parrett dredging report
    5th April 2016

    More than a mile and a half of the River Parrett has now been dredged by the Somerset Rivers Authority (SRA) in a bid to prevent flooding.
    They now plan to continue by dredging another half a mile of the river working in partnership with the Parrett Internal Drainage Board (IDP) and the Environment Agency.

    The Parrett IDB was funded by the SRA to specify and supervise maintenance dredging upstream of Northmoor Pumping Station. Equipment used included a 300-tonne crane, a 45-tonne excavator with a reach of 22 metres, and a tug boat for pushing and pulling hopper barges loaded with silt by machines placed on floating pontoons.

    Peter Maltby, Parrett IDB chairman, said: “I’m very proud of the work that the Parrett IDB and our contractors WM Longreach have done for the SRA and the people of Somerset. We’ve done a lot to maintain the benefits of the £6m dredging of the Parrett and Tone that was done after the awful floods in 2014.”

    New dredging downstream of Northmoor pumping station is due to begin in April. SRA funding has enabled the Environment Agency to award a contract for designing and carrying out this project to Galliford Try, Black & Veatch and Land & Water. These two companies completed the five mile 2014 dredge of the Parrett and Tone rivers. Work over the next few months will mostly be done from floating platforms on the river, with a short section being completed from the bank.

    The SRA was established after the 2014 floods to coordinate flood prevention work on the county’s waterways. ”
    http://www.thisisthewestcountry.co.uk/news/somerset_news/14404022._/

    Previously

    UK floods: MoD steps in to send army to Somerset Levels
    30 jan 2014

    “The government is to send in the army to help tackle the floods in the Somerset Levels.
    The Ministry of Defence is to deploy equipment and manpower to help those in affected areas by delivering food, transporting people and distributing sandbags.
    An MoD spokeswoman said : “We have tonight deployed military planners to help Somerset county council determine what support they might need.”

    “Tackled on the issue during prime minister’s questions, Cameron said he was urgently exploring what else could be done.
    “We now need to move more rapidly to the issues like dredging, which I think will help to make a long-term difference,” he said. “It is not currently safe to dredge in the Levels. But I can confirm that dredging will start as soon as it is practical, as soon as the waters have started to come down.”

    “Some residents in the area are furious that the Environment Agency stopped dredging the rivers years ago and have accused it of failing to keep up proper river maintenance. It is thought that about 40% of the capacity of the rivers Tone and Parrett could be clogged up with silt.”

    The Environment Agency’s chairman, Lord Smith, has said dredging makes only a small difference and is not a “comprehensive answer”. His view was contradicted by Jean Venables, chief executive of the Association of Drainage Authorities, who said the current levels of flooding could have been averted.

    “It’s a disaster area down there and it could have been avoided if we had kept up with maintenance on the rivers,” she told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme on Tuesday. “We have got a 20-year backlog of inactivity down there and it’s actually very, very urgent that those rivers are dredged.”
    http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2014/jan/29/somerset-river-dredging-floods-david-cameron

    European Union (EU) was reason for the Biblical floods in Somerset
    March 2014

    “Officialdom still seeks to divert the blame away from the useless chieftaincy of the Environment Agency who years ago ordered that the centuries-old practice of dredging the channels should cease.
    But towering evidence proves it was indeed this insane order that was to blame and now there are more revelations.

    One is that the point of the order, from idiots who know nothing about Somerset and inhabit city offices miles away, was to favour birds and small mammals over the local people.
    But the ground-nesting birds have all been wiped out and so have the voles, shrews and dormice – all drowned in their burrows. So much for city slickers understanding nature.

    Another is that the instruction actually came from the EU in Brussels in a directive of 2007, slavishly adopted by the Brown government in 2008.
    It was called “making space for water”, ie, flooding, and it was absolutely deliberate. ”
    http: //www.express.co.uk/comment/columnists/frederick-forsyth/464751/European-Union-EU-was-reason-for-the-Biblical-floods-in-Somerset

    • Cecily Collingridge says:

      I don’t know what point you are trying to make here with this selection of articles, Rose. They are rather misleading, particularly the last one, which seems to be some reference to the EU Habitats Directive. This is my neck of the woods in Somerset and flooding parts of the Levels (to temporarily hold back excess water) has always been part of the management due to the River Parrett discharging very slowly into Bridgwater Bay and it’s tidal all the way inland to Langport. Conditions in 2014 were exceptional.

      • Rose says:

        Cecily, I was giving another update on the progress of the dredging after those terrible floods and a reminder of what happened previously, I do understand that the fields are supposed to flood in the normal way.
        I have been following the story since it started as I have relatives there and visit regularly, unsurprisingly,I was very alarmed when the major Incident was declared and took even more notice from then on.
        http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-somerset-25876309

  13. Tony says:

    I count myself extremely fortunate in that I met Carol several times through freedom2choose. She managed to exude warmth, wit and wisdom in equal measure. A rare feat. I will miss her greatly.

  14. beobrigitte says:

    P.S. RIP Lysistrata.

    RIP, Lysistrata. I have all respect for her – we started off initially on the wrong foot; nevertheless, Carol struck me as a person who wasn’t completely convinced by gossip and a person used to making up her own mind – and we agreed to talk.
    Somehow it never happened. Other things got in the way. Despite her own situation Carol was the kind of person to feel for another person’s despair.

    Carol will be greatly missed.

    as for:

    it speaks for itself.

  15. Chris says:

    Lose the “jihadis and suicide bombers mixed in” and you’ve got a great cartoon there. ISIS forbids smoking in the areas it controls. Maybe you could draw an interesting parallel there.

    • churchmouse says:

      Agree, Chris, with the parallel on anti-smoking, anti-alcohol in Islam and health policy in the West. I read last week that it is no accident. Yes, that would make a great post.

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