Panoptica Chapter 10

Well, it seems Patrick Stewart (Captain Picard from Star Trek) has declared that the next series of Star Trek will cover both Brexit and Donnie the Trump.

That’s going to send it into the same ratings tailspin as the nonsensical politically correct lecturing of the latest Dr. Who. Another programme I used to like, gone. No point having a TV these days. There’s nothing left worth watching.

Star Trek is set so far in the future that both Brexit and Trump would just be footnotes in history books. Furthermore, at the time of Star Trek, there is one world government on Earth and even that is superseded by the Federation of Planets. Nobody in that fictional world is going to give the tiniest spatter of shit about past presidents of a country that used to exist, nor the separation of a country that used to be part of the EU but is now, like every other country on a whole load of planets, subsumed into the Galactic Union.

Bringing modern politics into that far-future fiction will kill it stone dead. I’ll re-watch the Kirk years on DVD, I think. I was so desperately disappointed in the political crap they injected into Dr. Who, I am not even going to try watching the new Star Trek.

Still, there’s always Panoptica. That’s only a generation or three into the future. And no, I am not going to add in Trump or Brexit or the EU because they are all dead by the time 10538’s story happens, and nobody in that world is taught any more than they absolutely need to know. A part of the story that is already here, for many people.

So, 10538 already has doubts about what he’s seen on TV. Let’s give him a bit more reality to consider…

Panoptica : Chapter 10

Click-clack. Click-clack. The train made an odd noise that cut through 10538’s muddled thoughts. Retirement. Pensionville. 11712. The cold grey warm colourful room with no windows and windows and hard seat, soft seat, the bus… 71556. Why was that unit’s designation drifting in the mess in his head? They could never have met.

Click-clack. Click-clack. The train shifted to one side. 10538 grabbed his seat on either side, his eyes wide.

71556 turned to face 10538. “Something wrong?”

“That noise. The clacking. And it felt like it was going to fall over.”10538 swallowed. “Is something wrong with this machine?”

“You’ve never been on a train before, have you?” 71556 stared at the window again. “It’s perfectly okay. Safe, at least until we get to the end of the line.”

“Pensionville? You’re going for retirement too?” 10538 blinked rapidly. Something in his head had linked 71556 and retirement but it tried to tell him that was in the past. It made no sense. He pushed the thought away.

“You could call it that, I suppose.” 71556 sighed. “It’s the end of the line, that’s for sure. You won’t know what’s coming, of course. Just as you never connected what you saw outside the train with what you’ve seen from inside it.”

Puzzled, 10538 stared at the window. The city limits passed, the red flashing lights warning of crossing into the deserted lands ran into the distance, along the tops of the fence they had just passed through. He shivered. He knew Pensionville was a long way off, of course, but it had not occurred to him they would have to cross the ravaged lands to get there. He hoped it wouldn’t be too long before the train crossed another, similar fence and returned to civilization.

What had 71556 meant about him not connecting outside and inside? He had seen the platform pull away, and now seen the edge of his city as the train passed it. What could be different outside? The sevens were scientists, he knew that. Although a seven-one was not a high-ranking scientist, they would still be able to understand things that a one-zero could never hope to grasp. 10538 shook himself. Such matters were above his rank and he had enough confusion in his head already. No sense adding to it.

Outside, the world was a bleak and horrible place. Twisted stumps of trees, smouldering grasses, decaying animals. Just as the TV had shown him. The sun beat down through a red haze, the flames on its surface licking at the sky. He had seen this on TV many times, but faced with its reality he found it hard to bear.

10538 stared at his hands. He saw faint red bands around his wrists and wondered where they had come from. His brain tried to tell him but could not, as if some ethereal hand covered his brain’s mouth. They told him this would all pass in Pensionville but how long would it take? How long before he felt normal again? How long before the thoughts in his mind could connect rather than bounce around aimlessly?

He stared at the window but found no comfort in the twisted stumps and decaying animals. He glanced at 71556 and wondered why his mind pushed and pushed at that designation as if trying to warn him of something. The train. The bus. Running. Movement. Trapped. Noise. Silence. Windowless windows. Inside and outside. Something was trying to get through but something else swatted it all aside. Click-clack. Click-clack.

Perhaps if he talked, perhaps the sound of his voice would silence the roar of his thoughts.

“I guess you took retirement too. Isn’t it great? We get to do whatever we want for the rest of your lives. Although…” 10538 licked his lips, “I’m not really sure what I want to do. My job was pretty much everything. I guess yours was too.”

71556 leaned back on his seat and closed his eyes. 10538 tried to ignore the obvious snub.

“I’ve been granted early retirement. I’m going to Pensionville. No more work for me. It’s all because I can read barcodes, well it wasn’t hard, I’ve been a camera watcher for so long now, I started to recognise the patterns and how they fit with the numbers. I have a special talent. So I get early retirement.” 10538 bit his lip. It was clear 71556 was ignoring him. One more try.

“I can read your code. You’re 71556. So you’re important. I can understand why you don’t want to bother with me.” 10538 lowered his head. It seemed he was not going to make a new friend today.

71556 opened one eye, then the other. “I can’t read barcodes. Who are you?”

Elated at getting a response, 10538 grinned. “I’m 10538. I’m amazed that a Seven-One can’t do what I do. So did you get retirement too?”

“Same as you.” 71556 turned his face to the window.

10538 followed his gaze. “It’s awful out there, isn’t it? Global warming has destroyed the planet.”

71556 snorted, then pointed at the scenery. “See that tree? The scorched one, twisted over? Look hard at it.”

“I see it.” 10538 shook his head. “What about it?”

“We’ve passed it many times on this trip already.” 71556 half-smiled. “You’ll see it again in three minutes.”

“Oh come on.” 10538 leaned back in his seat. “You think we’re just going in circles?”

“Wait three minutes,” 71556 stared at the window. “Also take note of that pattern of five blackened stumps.” A minute later: “See the way that decayed badger lies? Remember it.” Then: “The smoke from that smouldering grass. Remember the shape it makes.”

The twisted tree came into view. 10538 blinked. It couldn’t be the same one. Five blackened stumps. The badger. The shape of the smoke from the smouldering grass.

10538 sniffed. “Coincidence.”

“Keep watching.” 71556 waved him back to the window.

The twisted tree. The five stumps. The badger. The shape in the smoke.

10538 slumped in his seat. “We are going in circles.”

“No.” 71556’s voice was gentle. “Those are not windows. They are screens, like the ones on your buses and trams. They show you what you are supposed to see, not what’s really out there.”

“So what’s really out there? Something worse?” The chaos in 10538’s head intensified. Tears of confusion and terror welled in his eyes.

“Something better.” 71556 inhaled sharply as the train wheels squealed and their movement slowed. “Something I might not see again, and something you’ll probably never see. I think we’ve arrived at the end of the line.”

“I don’t see a platform and we haven’t passed an environment fence.” 10538 looked at the window. “We’re still in the ruined lands.”

“I told you, those are screens.” 71556 rolled his eyes. “Nothing to do with what’s out there. End of the line. It’s time to say goodbye.”

“Goodbye? Aren’t you going to the same place as me?”

“Yes. And that’s why—” 71556 froze, eyes wide, as the door opened.

“Are we there? Is this retirement?” 10538 pulled his onesie tighter at the neck. “They didn’t say it would be cold.” All he saw was white outside and little white flakes drifting in through the door.

A voice shouted from the white void beyond the door. Mary. Run. This won’t work for very long.

“That’s Terry.” 71556 stood and grabbed 10538’s onesie at the chest. “You want to live? Come on, this is your only chance.”

“But… Retirement.” 10538’s mind filled with contradictions. The warm place. The cold place. Noise. Silence. Did he retire twice? 11712. The one-way window. The twisted tree. The badger. Red marks on his wrists. The ghost. The ghost!

“There is no bloody retirement. You are an anomaly. You showed initiative and you learned to do something beyond your station. They will take you apart, analyse you, and whatever’s left will go into the power station furnace. If you’re lucky you’ll be dead by then.” 71556 pulled 10538 to his feet. “You want to see past those screens you call windows? Come on then, let’s go look.”

“It’s all burned out there. Nobody can live there.” 10538 struggled but 71556 pulled him towards the open door. “It’s all blackened and dead and…” They reached the door.

Green shoots through a white landscape. People, living people, not wearing barcodes. The sun, a gentle yellow orb with no flames. The sky, blue not red and with white patches moving over it. No blackened stumps. No smouldering grass. No badger.

It was impossible to deny this. It was impossible to correlate it with what he had been shown his whole life. Impossible to make it conform. Impossible to adjust this sight to reality. He could not achieve CCC no matter how he tried.

His mind overloaded with contradiction, 10538 passed out.

Will Big Ben Bong for Brexit?

Who the hell cares?

Okay, it’s a momentous occasion – if it happens. There’s still time for a stitch-up. Sure, have a party in Parliament square, I’m north of Aberdeen and have never liked London so I won’t be there. But then nobody will notice my absence anyway and they might even have a good time.

I don’t mind at all if there is a vuvula chorus, dancing llamas and a Pin the Lie on the Politician competition. I’d quite like to see the long promised Bonfire of the Quangos – I believe that was the Cleggeron Coagulation’s promise, many years ago. I doubt it will ever happen.

Apparently it will cost half a million beer vouchers to make Big Ben bong. I’d bash it with a hammer for half that price and a month’s supply of whisky. There is much mumbling about how half a million quid could be better spent and I’m sure they are all quite correct, but Big Ben is undergoing maintenance. If it costs half a million to get it bonging in the next three weeks, it’ll still cost half a million to get it bonging in the next three months. The money is irrelevant.

Nigel Farage has said that the UK will be a laughing stock if Big Ben doesn’t bong to mark our departure from the EU. I don’t, personally, give a shit if it bongs or not. Neither does the rest of the world.

What I am waiting to see, and what, I suspect, most of the world is waiting to see, is one thing and one thing only.

Does the UK finally have a government that is going to do what it said it would do?

If it doesn’t, then the UK will be a laughing stock, bongs or no bongs.

Panoptica Chapter 9

I’ve been distracted by a short story idea concerning Annunaki, Neanderthals and the ‘replacement of Europeans’. This will not take long and I’ll be back to Panoptica as soon as I have the other story drafted.

As for the news, I’m finding it hard to get worked up about any of it. The Labour leadership contest – meh. I’m not a member of any political party so won’t have a say and frankly, don’t give a damn. The candidate lineup looks like the starting line of a window licking competition. I don’t care which one they pick.

Apparently it’s ‘racism’ to criticise Meghan Markle, or Meghan Windsor as she is now. This is playing a full deck of race cards all at once, and what for? What does it matter if a minor royal decides he doesn’t want to be royal any more? He won’t be the first to abdicate his royalness. There are no examples of racism in any of the criticism I’ve seen and I don’t care enough about another family’s issues to comment myself. This is for Mrs. Queen and Wrinkled Phil to sort out. Not my business.

I’ve given up arguing with global warmers. There’s no point and it’s too late anyway. Climate change has arrived and is killing people in India, Pakistan and Afghanistan because they aren’t used to experiencing that much cold. Countries all over the world are seeing cold records fall every day – and the Church of Climatology focuses on arsonist-set fires in Australia. Even though much of Australia is also recording record low temperatures in what, for them, is summer. When I say ‘low’ I mean low for Australia, so pretty much British summer temperatures. They aren’t under glaciers and probably won’t be. There’s too much sea between Antarctica and the next land for effective glacier formation. The North doesn’t have that buffer. Maybe Australia will eventually have low enough temperatures for normal people to visit without having to wear stillsuits and a Meccano framework of fans and ice.

We have several years’ worth of firewood, we have well water and septic tank sewage. I just need to get a generator, ideally steam powered because the idiots are likely to push fuel prices into daft levels soon. I doubt they exist but I’m sure a petrol one could be modified with maybe an old railway tank engine to drive it. Yes, I am looking for an excuse to get one. Let the warmers keep pretending it’s getting hotter, and that CO2 is the only thing that matters. The game is over. They’re just hiding in that global warming jungle, pretending the war is still going on. I’m happy to leave them there.

Brexit – will it happen? I’m not going to hold my breath. Boris might actually come through on this or he might be a jolly Santa-like version of Jackboots May. We’ll get a better idea on the 31st January but we won’t know for sure until December. Either way, there’s sod all I can do about it so I’m not going to worry about it.

Enough gloom – I’m obviously spending far too much time with Gloom Dog lately – and on with the jolly tale of Panoptica. This’ll cheer you up. Comparatively.

Panoptica: Chapter 9

46110. 46826. 46053. The onesie patterns were unmistakable. 10538 stopped moving when he saw the unit marked as 93224. This rail station was under heavy security. Ghosthunters and a Coalition advisor? Something important must be happening, so what was he doing here? Surely he didn’t merit such a high-ranking sendoff party?

“Something wrong? Why have you stopped?” 18823 nudged him forward.

10538 took hesitant steps. “There are very important units here. A lot of security. What’s that for?”

“Have you ever been to a train station before?” 18823 moved in front of 10538, smiling.

“Well… no. I only ever needed the bus.”

“Trains are for longer journeys. The higher ranks need to get to distant places quickly. They’ll be waiting for trains going to their own destinations.” 18823 took 10538’s arm. “Come on. The train to Pensionville is already here. It has to clear the platform before other trains can arrive.”

10538 looked around. There was a concrete floor, a thing like a little room with a door, the concrete floor seemed to fall away on either side of the little room. Baffled, he turned to 18823. “I don’t know what a train looks like. Is it around here?”

18823 laughed. “Of course. I’ve never ridden in one but I’ve brought others here. So I know how it works. Let me show you.” He led 10538 to the edge of the concrete floor, just beside the little room, “Look down there.”

10538 peered cautiously over the edge. About a metre or so down lay steel bars, linked together at intervals, that ran under the room and off into the distance.

“Those are rails.” 18823 pointed into the distance. “They lead to Pensionville. This—” he indicated the little room “—runs on those rails so it can’t ever take a wrong turn. You sit inside and it will take you to Pensionville safely. That’s all there is to it. You just sit inside and wait. You don’t have to do anything.”

“Just like the bus?” 10538 looked over the little room. It had no visible windows, just the door.

“Even better. Because it’s on rails it can’t go the wrong way. It’s a lot faster too.” 18823 patted 10538’s back. “Come on, let’s get you on board.”

They stood before the door to the little room 18823 had called a ‘train’. There was a hiss and the door moved forwards, then sideways along the side of the train. 10538 was aware of movement around him – the ghosthunters had tensed, the advisor took a step back. He glanced at 18823, whose smile was tight and who appeared to not be breathing.

10538 stepped through the door. Someone sat in there, someone who looked up at him with one raised eyebrow. The onesie identified them as 71556. 10538 raised his hand in greeting to show his designation. 71556 snorted and looked away.

10538 turned to 18823. “Seems I’m not travelling alone.”

“Anyone you know?” 18823 spoke through gritted teeth.

10538 felt a little taken aback. It felt as though there was another overlay to this whole situation but he just could not grasp it. “No,” he said. “Never seen this unit before.”

18823 blew a long breath, as though relieved about something. He raised his hand. “Well, 10538, this is goodbye. I hope to join you in Pensionville one day but until then, be compliant, be comfortable, and conform.”

“I will. Be happy in your important job.” 10538 raised his hand in response until the door hissed closed. Once it had, he took a seat opposite 71556 and wondered if he should start a conversation. It seemed presumptuous to insist on conversation with a higher rank so instead, he stared out of the window.

The empty platform slid away as the train pulled out of the station.

Panoptica chapter 8

There isn’t much to say about current world madness. Apparently Harry and Meghan are going to leave home. Well they are in their thirties, old enough to make their own choices. I rather suspect they’ll leave behind more than they think they will, and that there’ll be no way back, but still the choice is theirs. Nobody can or should make that choice for them.

Iran has admitted that they shot down the passenger jet in a massive cock-up by the missile crew. I suspected that would be the case. Nothing underhand here, it was a cock-up that resulted in a lot of deaths. Not the first in the world by a long way and it won’t be the last.

The people of Iran are protesting. They want their oppressive leaders ousted. I hope no other country interferes – ‘regime change’ is best done from within and with no occupying forces left behind afterwards. Meddling in other countries’ governance has never ended well. Let them sort it out themselves. The turning point will come when the security forces realise they are shooting at their own families. That’s where the change happens.

So, people out there are making changes in their lives. I say, leave them to it. It’s nobody else’s business unless they ask for help. If they don’t ask, don’t force it on them.

Well, Leg Iron Books is off to a busy start. Thanks to Gastradamus for deciding to delay the release of his book while he perfects it to the absolute best it can be. It took a lot of pressure off over Christmas, but that’s still moving forward. There is a collection of short stories from Justin Sanebridge in the early stages of assembly and more stories in from a new author, Jude Wanderer, who you’ll be hearing more of. In March, we’ll have Underdog Anthology 11 (Legiron’s Eleven?) starting up and I have promised to do at least a chapter a week on Panoptica. It’s the only New Year Resolution I ever made that I had the slightest intention of keeping.

So here’s chapter 8. I’m still seven chapters ahead. The frequency might decline to one a week if these other books take up much time but I am determined to finally finish this thing.

If you think this one is confusing, try to imagine how 10538 feels…

Panoptica: Chapter 8

“10538. Are you ill?” Someone shook his shoulder.

10538 blinked his eyes open. He sat on a soft chair in a brightly lit room with a window. Seated opposite him, behind a wide desk, was 86929 – no, the barcode read 20929. How could he get that wrong? And yet the face…

“Sorry.” 10538 shook his head. “I feel a little strange.”

“The doctors did say you were stressed and overworked.” The voice came from the one who had shaken his shoulder. 10538 looked up.

Standing beside him, grinning, was 84823 – no, the code read 18823. Wrong again! Was he losing his touch? Reading the onesie barcodes had become easy, perhaps he was taking it for granted and getting lax.

“It’s okay.” 20929 leaned forward. “We understand. The doctors explained everything.”

“Doctors?” 10538 raised his hands and stared at them. Weren’t these tied or something? He looked around the room. How did I get here? Where am I? “What doctors?”

18823 glanced at 20929 before speaking. “The ones who visited you at home this morning. They diagnosed you with stress, and they called to say you would be late for work. They also recommended a reduction in your workload.”

“I don’t remember any of that.” 10538 felt panic rise. “Where am I? What’s going on?”

“Stay calm. There is no cause for alarm.” 20929 moved a glass of water towards 10538. “The doctors advised us that occasional memory loss and,” he lowered his head to stare at 10538, “sometimes even a short loss of consciousness are normal for the overstressed. Don’t worry, the effects can be cured.”

“They can? Will I get my memory back?” 10538 picked up the glass and took a long drink.

“Sure.” 18823 patted his shoulder. “Everything will be fine. This interview is to decide how best to cure your stress. It’s pretty severe and we really want to help you.”

“You have been an exemplary worker, 10538.” 20929 tapped at his screenpad. “Never late, no complaints at all, diligent and conscientious. You have put so much into your job it seems you have left little for yourself.” He put his elbows on the table, clasped his hands and looked at 10538. “I think we can offer you an early retirement. How would you like to go to Pensionville, where you can relax and recover at leisure?”

“I…” 10538 realised his mouth hung open. He closed it. Didn’t I just go through this same scene, but a little different? Did I dream that? The memory floated, distant and elusive, just like a dream. “I don’t know what to say. I had no idea I was overworked. I love my job, it’s important, it makes me feel wanted and useful.”

“We all have important jobs.” The two units recited the mantra.

“There comes a time, for all of us,” 20929 became serious, “when we hand over our important job to the next in line. Then we can relax, retire, take it easy for the rest of our lives. You, 10538, by virtue of your diligence and your special skill of reading barcodes, now have the chance to take that retirement. To relax, to spend your days any way you choose, to recover from the stress your work has imposed on you and to be happy all the time. Isn’t that what you want? Isn’t it what we all want?”

“Yes.” I suppose. “But my job. My cameras.” 10538’s head spun. Were there doctors at his home this morning? There was a faint recollection, a hint of memory but it slid away when he tried to focus on it. Something else too. Something about a bus.

“Oh don’t worry about your job. It will be reallocated. It’s time to think of yourself now. You have worked so hard, you have earned this.” 18823 squeezed 10538’s shoulder, gently. “You can relax now. Take the train to Pensionville and retire in the knowledge you have done well.”

20929 nodded his head. “We are all very proud of you, 10538. You have worked so hard. Too hard, really. You have earned this reward.”

Reward. I was rewarded for something else. Wasn’t I? 10538 could not remember any other reward. Maybe this was his reward. Maybe he dreamed that too. He put his head in his hands.

“Aren’t you pleased?” 18823 placed a gentle hand on 10538’s shoulder. “You’ll spend the rest of your life in warmth and comfort, doing just as you like.”

“It’s just—” 10538 licked his dry lips. “I can’t seem to tell the difference between reality and dreams. I feel like I’ve forgotten something but when I try to remember, it just fades away.”

18823 squeezed 10538’s shoulder. “That’s the effect of stress. Those feelings will fade in Pensionville. You’ll be surprised how fast you’ll stop worrying when you get there.”

10538 pursed his lips and considered his options. There was really only one option. The stress he was under was affecting his mind. He could insist on staying and perhaps go insane and end up in New Bedlam, or he could take the easy, comfortable conformity of retirement. He decided to comply. “I accept. When do I leave?”

20929 leaned back and spread his arms. “At once. Your retirement, once accepted, is effective immediately. 18823 will take you to the station, and the train is ready to leave.”

“At once?” 10538 was taken aback. “But I need to change. This onesie feels like I’ve been wearing it for days. And I would like to tell 11712 about my good fortune. Is there time?”

20929 and 18823 exchanged a glance. 18823 left the room.

“There’s no time to see your friend. We will convey your good news for you. However, there is time to change your clothing. 18823 is fetching you a fresh one now.” 20929 nodded and smiled then leaned forward, his elbows on the desk. His face became serious. “Tell me, 10538, did you ever see a ghost on your monitors?”

Ghost. Wasn’t there one, once? Was it a dream? A wishful thought? 10538 closed his eyes and tried to recall, but the memories flitted out of reach as if taunting him. He took a deep breath. “No. Nothing but comfortable compliant conformity. I never saw a terrorist on my screens.”

20929 seemed to relax. He moved back a little and smiled again. “That’s a good thing. You watched over everyone, and just because you didn’t see any threat doesn’t mean that your time was wasted. You have spent your time here doing a very important job and now it’s time for your reward. Peace and contented conformity.”

Reward. That word again. It echoed in 10538’s brain as if trying to connect with something but at last, finding nothing, it faded.

18823 returned with a folded onesie and placed it on the table in front of 10538.

“We’ll give you privacy to change. Only the cameras will be watching.” 20929 rose and headed for the door. 18823 followed.

The door closed. Alone, apart from the ever-present cameras, 10538 stared at the folded onesie on the desk. His head swirled. Retirement. Reward. 11712. Ghost. Terrorist. The words bounced inside his skull looking for a place to connect but every connection was blocked. Stress, they had said. Just stress and overwork. 10538 sighed and reached for the fresh clothing.

See the tinfoil shine

Well, everything is getting way out of hand and we’re not even halfway into January yet. Politicians are getting microanalysed, every sniff, every missed word, every hand movement, it all has to mean something. It’s either a secret code or they’re drunk or drugged. Maybe they’re just having a bad day or getting a cold? Nah, that’s no fun.

The 2020 Spring Collection, available soon.

A photo of Suleimani’s hand, wearing a ring, has been touted as proof of his death. But wait! There is another photo showing that ring when he was alive and the setting is different! So it must be a different man’s hand!

Not one second of consideration that a man with substantial wealth might own more than one ring. The stone set in those rings is most likely Yemeni aqeeq (agate), a stone believed to have considerable beneficial properties in the Arab world. Good quality ones are not cheap but those prices wouldn’t even faze a general. I bet he had several of them.

This also means it’s not surprising that some rich celebrities have one of those ‘lucky’ rings too. Celebrities are remarkably prone to believing in superstitious nonsense and really, one of those rings is pocket change to them. Now, there might be some conspiracy linking them all or they might all just have fancied getting a lucky ring. There are many websites selling them and they are likely to be in high street jewellers too. I don’t know, I haven’t spent a lot of time in jewellery shops. They don’t sell whisky – well the one in Ellon does because the whisky shop is in a corner of the jeweller’s but I only visit that corner.

It seems that in retaliation for the American drone killing Suleimani, Iran has fired rockets into unoccupied places, killed fifty of their own people in a stampede at Suleimani’s funeral and shot down a Ukranian passenger jet leaving Tehran airport. No wonder Trump isn’t scared of them.

The rocket attack was a face-saving exercise. Iran had informed Iraq before it happened, knowing that Iraq would inform the Americans, giving them time to get out of the way. Iran does not want an escalation but they could not simply do nothing. Loss of honour in that part of the world is disastrous. So nobody below the highest levels would know about the plan, they didn’t kill any Americans (but claim they did) but their ground forces were expecting retaliation. Since no Americans died, the USA doesn’t have to respond and World War Three is postponed.

The plane seems likely to have been an accident. America (if they have any sense) will not crow about this since some years back, an American warship in the Gulf misidentified an Iranian passenger plane and shot it down. So they really can’t claim any high ground.

Conspiracy theories about the jet are already in full swing. It’s claimed that one side or the other shot it down to kill someone in particular, a mysterious someone who is really important in a mysterious something.

My own feeling is that a jumpy anti-aircraft operator, expecting a response to the missiles, simply saw a plane and pressed ‘fire’. In that situation they’d hardly be likely to call the plane for a chat to see how they’re doing. An incoming aircraft in the middle of what they think is a battle is going to get a reflex response. Remember, those ground soldiers didn’t know the Americans had been warned, and had moved away before the rockets landed. They thought they were at the beginning of a war.

It would have been sensible, of course, to advise the airport to ground all flights while there were missiles flying around. That clearly didn’t happen. Basically, all those deaths were due to a massive cock-up.

Apparently there were 63 Canadians on the flight. Oooo, suspicious! They must have been involved in the Uranium One madness and were getting out of town fast. Or maybe they worked in the oilfields, or at reactor sites, or in construction, and were just on a shift change. Maybe they simply thought things were getting a bit hairy and decided to get the hell out of the way.

Why were they going to Ukraine? Isn’t that suspicious? Well… if I was in a city that looked increasingly likely to be bombarded with the full fury of the American military, I think I’d be on the first available flight to anywhere. Getting home can wait, getting the hell out would be my priority.

So sure, you can read a lot into all the circumstances of the last few days but unless I see some solid evidence I’m going to put most of it down to bad luck, panic and ineptitude. Lots of foreign nationals leaving Tehran when there’s war brewing is not a surprise, and I’m also not going to be surprised that they might have just bought a ticket on the first flight to anywhere else. It’s what I would have done.

As I said, the airport letting that flight depart when there were missiles flying and some very tense anti-aircraft operators around was a very bad idea. Maybe they let it fly so that the important person in the important scheme thing could be killed. Maybe they just screwed up.

It was a fast-moving, very tense and confusing time and mistakes are highly likely under those conditions. Missiles flying, a harsh response expected, the airport trying to get people out of town, bad communication and panicky anti-aircraft crews…

None of it needs a conspiracy. I’m not saying there isn’t one, just that microanalysing every event in a confused and panicked situation isn’t always necessary. There could have been darker motives at work but I see no real evidence for that and we probably never will. That won’t stop the theories, of course.

Buy shares in tinfoil.

War and Pansexual

Tolstoy would have had a lot of fun with that.

Well, it seems one of the prospects for Lib Dem leader has come out as pansexual. I don’t think she fully appreciates what it means. It isn’t the same as bisexual, which is what her self-decription indicates. A pansexual will shag anything. Human, animal, a tree with a convenient branch or hole, anything at all. You know. We used to call them ‘tarts’ in the days before political correctness.

I don’t really care. If the tree doesn’t mind, why would I? Still, it’s a good idea to check the definition of a label before applying it to yourself, I’d say.

A judge has declared ‘ethical veganism’ to be a ‘protected characteristic’. Protected from what exactly? I was not aware of any persecution of vegans. Since they have a habit of blocking MacDonalds’ and generally nagging non-vegans at every opportunity, I would have thought we should be protected from them. One day they’ll realise that continuous provocation of meat eaters while being made of meat is only going to end one way. Perhaps that’s why they need to get that legal protection in place early.

As I write, it is just past midnight and into the first minutes of January the Fourth. Not only has 2020 already provided the above insanity, but it seems we are now on the brink of World War Three.

Donnie Trumpton’s Army has taken out some really evil guy. An Iranian general called Soleimani. I’ve seen tweets from Iranians saying this guy was responsible for killing thousands of protestors and his group delighted in torturing their own people. This, aside from all the terror attacks he has masterminded outside Iran.

The general died in a drone attack, if what I’ve seen is accurate. At Baghdad airport in Iraq. Not in Iran. Why would the US attack an Iranian in Iraq using drones? Isn’t that likely to piss off both countries?

It is being said that Donnie is trying to start a war. However, before this event, the American embassy in Baghdad was attacked and this particular general (again, I can only go on what I’ve seen reported) was behind it. Attacking an embassy is an act of war. The USA retaliated. The general declared war, and he lost.

The interesting thing about that embassy attack is that it was instantly touted as ‘Trump’s Benghazi’ even before the dust had settled. The only similarity with Benghazi is that a US embassy was attacked. In Benghazi, no support arrived and the embassy staff died in some very nasty ways indeed. Hillary C is on record saying the public will soon forget. Seems they haven’t, on either side.

So was this supposed to be Trump’s Benghazi, and the mantra took form before the embassy staff were, in fact, saved? It was a very different scenario. This time, US forces arrived very quickly, some terrorist leaders were arrested and one (some reports say more than one) high ranking psychopath was found and summarily dispatched. Was it legal? Well you’ll need an expert in international law and the rules of engagement for that one. I have no idea.

Consequences? Bound to be. Iran has to retaliate, the ‘honour’ thing is very big among those people. They are going to hit back, that’s for sure.

Jezza has already been out demanding that Boris does not get Britain involved. It pains me to say it, but he is right. Our military has been so underfunded and so demoralised by prosecutions of soldiers after they were ordered into combat, that I really don’t think they can be fairly deployed. It’s not our fight and, knowing that they could be prosecuted after risking their lives for another country’s fight, their hearts won’t be in it. The US has plenty of firepower, they can handle this.

If Iran’s leaders stop to think for a moment though… Benghazi prompted no retaliation at all. The Oblimey administration did not even attempt to help their staff and nothing happened afterwards.

Baghdad prompted an instant and deadly reaction.

They are not dealing with a President who bows to other world leaders and who is conciliatory when his people are attacked. They are dealing with a President who is an impulsive bloody madman. A big strike by Iran is going to have Trump’s finger itching over the big red button.

Oh sure, Iran is a big country, but its primary infrastructure is centralised. It’s not like fighting Afghan tribal rebels who can strike and then disappear into the hills. The US military knows exactly where Iran’s primary control centres are and frankly, they really don’t need nukes. Hell, Iran has reactors that conventional weapons could blow.

I don’t think this will go to world war but I think it could get nasty. Iran will not – cannot – just let it lie. They have to save face. They cannot be seen to back down, not among the people of that part of the world. They will have to do something.

So it hinges on whether Trump is willing to let them save face. He might be willing to let them ‘win’ a negotiation but my bet is he will not let them win a war. If it goes to all out war then Iran’s major export in the future will be luminous glass. They can’t win it, unless China and Russia mobilise on their side and neither of those really wants to take on a Trump USA.

They’ve met him. They know what he’s like. This is not Clinton or Obama, they can’t just demand a bribe to keep quiet. They know that if it came right down to it, Trump is going to push that button. Then they’ll have to push theirs. From there, well, better start learning to bang the rocks together because that’ll be all that’s left.

I don’t think it’ll come to that. Russia and China don’t want to get into an escalation that ends in the utter destruction of everything. They would have pushed hard if it had been Oblimey but they know this mad bugger isn’t going to give an inch. My bet is they are looking for a way for Iran to come out looking good without sending troops in to fight one last, absolutely final war.

The most interesting part is the number of idiot westerners who have come out in support of the Iranian regime. Not the Iranian people – these same idiots had nothing to say when the regime killed over a thousand of its own people for daring to protest, nor when women were locked up for daring to show their hair in public. No, they are in solidarity with the Ayatollahs who ordered those imprisonments and deaths.

They do this because they hate Trump. Maybe they really do support the regime that torments the Iranian people, I don’t know. You’d have to ask them. Their primary motivation is hatred of Trump. They would support Satan himself if Trump attacked Hell.

It’s not unusual. Here in the UK, we have Jerry Cordite trying to extend the Brexit finale by another two years. Why? He does not want to be in the EU. He wants to nationalise everything. EU rules won’t let him. So why is he against Brexit?

He isn’t. He’s against Boris Johnson and he is willing to bugger up negotiations and leave the country in limbo just to make Boris look bad.

Politics all over the West has become that petty. Support vicious regimes because your leader is against them, drag out Brexit for years just to embarrass the government. To hell with the people. Any of them. Anywhere. Point scoring is all that matters.

I’m not worried about China and Russia. They don’t need to do a damn thing.

They can watch the West destroy itself.

More madness

I am frantically writing ‘Panoptica’ before it comes true. I have long suspected it might but in these last few days it has transpired that the ‘genderless society’ is well on track. A transgender man has given birth to a baby, with his/her/its non-binary partner, using a donation of female sperm.

That’s a real headline. Give it five more years of this and the first politician to suggest scrapping all gender altogether will win by a landslide. No more differentiation. Everyone the same, perfect equality enforced with neonatal surgery. Although I doubt they’ll tell you that last bit right away 😉

By then they will have transgendered so many children they’ll all be permanently sterile anyway. Worker drones, like ants or bees. Only the elite reproduce. Far-fetched? I thought so too but not any more.

The Church of Climatology is now claiming the world is warming when it isn’t. Nothing new there, they’ve been claiming humans affect the climate for about a century and yet the climate does what the hell it likes with no regard to humanity. Catastrophic warming is ten years away. As usual.

In India, houses have no heating. Not even new ones. The winter temperatures there are normally around 10 C while the summer heat is appalling, so houses are designed to dissipate heat, not retain it. Currently, large swathes of India are at 2 C. People are freezing to death. Okay, 2 C is, to me, quite mild weather but I live in the north of Scotland. Minus 10 C is a perfectly normal winter temperature here. For people whose environment never goes that low, 2 C is absolutely freezing. And with no heat source it can kill those people.

America is recording record low temperatures this winter, all over the place. All those reports of ‘record high temperatures’ have been proven false. Every one of them. They can doctor data, but people are finding old newspaper reports on very hot weather that contradict the doctored data. This scam should be falling apart. It’s getting stronger.

I think it genuinely started with scientists trying to boost their grant income but it has now been hijacked by communism. It’s not about climate any more, if it ever was. It’s about control.

We are told we must all go vegan to save the planet and we are told that massive crop failures are imminent due to climate change. So if we are all vegan, won’t we starve to death? Well duh, that’s the idea. Massive population reduction is no secret and hasn’t been for a long time. Make everyone vegan then crash the food source, having first killed off all the animal sources.

The BBC recently flew to meet Gritty Thunderbird in Sweden. They apologised like penitents at the altar of a vengeful god for their sinful use of planes and then they interviewed her.

In the snow.

You cannot get through to these people. Any of them. I’m not trying to warn them any more, I’ll just document their decline into total servitude. Panoptica will happen. Nothing can stop it now. So I am writing as fast as I can, before we hit the next book-burning phase when there won’t be anyone left to read it.

It’s going to be a busy New Year. I have to combine the last three anthologies into one omnibus edition. I have also decided to combine ‘Fears of the Old and the New’ and ‘Dark Thoughts and Demons’ into one book, as long as I can make it cheaper than the separate books. I’m thinking about trying it with ‘Jessica’s Trap’, ‘Samuel’s Girl’ and ‘Norman’s House’ but that might turn out to be a vast tome. Then there are a couple of other books that have been on hold over the Christmas period.

Panoptica has to be a priority now. It’s coming faster than I had anticipated. I can see the panic in the Church of Climatology – the Grand Solar Minimum is about to blow that game right out of the water in just a few years. If they are going to get control they have to get it soon.

People point at George Soros and while I think he’s definitely a wrong ‘un he isn’t doing all this alone. Incidentally, I saw a recent tweet claiming Soros was a holocaust survivor. He survived it totally. He joined the Nazis. He’s never made a secret of it.

I don’t know if there is some secret elite running this show. Maybe there is. Lots of people claim there is but nobody can point at them. I don’t think it’s necessary.

Lots of little crazy pressure groups like Antifa, BLM, the Climatologists, so many more, just need a few radical infiltrators and the lunacy is ingrained. There are many, many, gullible people out there who can be convinced of pretty much anything in a matter of minutes. Heck, I’ve played with antismokers I’ve met and left some of them believing that all grey dust is tobacco ash. That was easy, their ‘handlers’ had already convinced them it never degrades so all I had to do was mention 400 years of smoking and… bingo.

But I was doing it for a bit of malicious fun. I wasn’t trying to take control of an entire population. Just mess with the heads of those who hate me.

There are now many groups trying to take control. If we’re lucky, they work individually and will end up fighting each other. There are some signs that that is happening. If they are co-ordinated, we’re doomed.

I don’t mind if you want to believe I’ve joined the tinfoil-hatters. I don’t mind if you want to believe the world is warming while you protest in the snow. I don’t mind if you buy listening devices and cameras linked to the internet and install them in your home. I don’t mind if you’re happy to get that contactless card chip or the chip that opens your house installed in your hand. All that and more is entirely up to you.

I don’t know about the chemtrails thing. I’m looking into it but I’m so far not convinced. I don’t see how you can reliably target an aerosol attack from 30,000 feet and hope it lands where you want it to land.

I once thought Common Purpose was just a conspiracy theory. It’s not. It’s a useful-idiot training facility and you can recognise them by their exaggerated body language. Really, it’s like bloody semaphore! Yet they are placed in positions where their stupidity can do a lot of damage. I suspect their flamboyantly-waving hand is in the current claim that the Lake District is racist because a lot of white people go there.

I’ve been there. It’s very nice in summer. I’ve also driven through it at night. It’s total darkness because at night, and especially in winter, nobody wants to live there. It can get pretty bleak. It’s located in the north of England so you would expect the visitors to be largely the indigenous population. Complaining it’s too white is like complaining Mecca is too Muslim. And yet the person in charge of it is now demanding diversity. Expect to see busloads of non-whites turning up and being forced to enjoy the bleakness at gunpoint.

It’s ‘elitist’ because only able-bodied people can truly enjoy the mountain walks. Well I’m able to do the mountain walks. I’ve done a few. I’ll save you the bother. There is bugger all at the top. I’m not doing them again.

Maybe they should use the mountains to fill in the lakes and bulldoze it all flat. Then we can all bask in the comfortable compliant conformity of it all. The CCC of life in Panoptica.

Yes, CCC…Panoptica is quite deliberate 😉

Anyway, I’ll let you get back to watching the insanity of modern life and the collapse of civilisation while I write your future.

If I can get it done before it comes true.