I haven't posted much lately, partly because I haven't had the heart to do so, and partly because of not knowing what on earth to say. My mind has been much taken up with the shambles which our Parliament has demonstrated itself to be, which is a subject in its own right. There are calls for a General Election, which is the long time, only, and stock remedy for the sort of situation we now have, but knowing what we do of much of the present lot of MPs, and realising that there is not likely to be a wholesale dismissal of existing candidates and a fresh selection process to find newer and better ones, and that our voting system is one that destroys any semblance of a relationship between what the voters ask for and the eventual composition of the House of Commons, one is left with a feeling of hopelessness about one's inability to do anything constructive about the future of one's country. And that also begs another question, to what extent IS it one's country any more? The things we were brought up to believe that it stood for have apparently flown away while we were not looking. Were we misinformed as children, or did our parents, grandparents, and teachers believe it all too ? Nothing amiss is seen (for example) about appointing an adulterer, who has made his living by writing lies for a once respectable newspaper, as our Foreign Secretary. The man himself is unfitted for public office, and what can one say about a Prime Minister who makes such an appointment ?
We ( my wife and I) have watched this dreadful performance for weeks now, wondering what the most likely outcome is to be and yesterday, having discussed this on several occasions, we included in out supermarket shopping the beginnings of a stockpile of food. We will not eat very luxuriously, fresh food is likely to be unobtainable, so tinned food or anything with a long shelf life is to be preferred with enough of protein, fat and carbohydrate to sustain life on a daily basis until the International Red Cross comes to our aid (he writes hopefully). Whether we will have a reliable electricity or gas supply is uncertain as so much of both comes in from outside sources. It was been pointed out last year that if the electrically driven pumps that keep our water supplies coming to us, and ensure that our sewage is taken away cannot work, or can only work for short periods each day, we shall indeed be living a third world existence.
No one seems to know which, or if any, medicines will be able to get into the country so people like myself who consume a great deal of tablets and capsules of a preventative nature will then have to live with all the heightened risk factors the drugs are designed to abate. I anticipate an increased death rate from things such as stroke and heart attack in my own cardiac community alone. The diabetics seem to be in worse case as much of their insulin comes from Europe and cannot be stockpiled for any length of time. I wonder whether somewhere in the civil service arrangements are in hand for increased rates of disposal of the dead and whether the undertakers have been offered help to boost their capabilities ?
Eighty plus years ago we faced all these same questions (apart perhaps from the supply of medicines) as we faced the second world war of that century. Fortunately at that time there were many people still alive who had lived through world war one and were still sufficiently young to be able to set in motion things like the Air Raid Precautions, Gas Masks, Evacuation drills, and Food Rationing and the rest. By 3 September 1939 we had arrangements, offices and people in place, and best of all we KNEW about what to do because we were told. As 29 March next approaches we have only rumours of arrangements in place (making use of shipping firms that have no ships !) and not a word of help, advice or encouragement from our atrocious non - Government.