Because I find everything to do with the EU and, especially, the discussions conducted on various sites and threads unutterably tedious I tend to fall behind in my coverage of it. So, yes, I know this is yesterday's news but I think I have something to add.
Monday's Evening Standard had one or two articles that I sort of read. Doesn't happen every day. Except for Fay Maschler's articles on most Wednesdays, Brian Sewell's on many Thursdays or the film reviews on all Fridays, I tend to flip through that paper, maybe do the word games and take it home to line the cat litter tray. That sort of attitude in readers does not inspire the advertisers and, unsurprisingly, the Standard works hard to overcome it.
The front page was full of dire warnings from Thames Water about how we should use less water or pay more for it. I noticed that there was no mention of the amount of water that is lost because Thames Water's ability to keep the pipes in reasonable condition is negligible. The Standard's editorial chipped in, saying, ha-ha-ha, how unfortunate it was that the rain started as soon as the newspaper with that story came out but, really, we live in a fairly dry climate that is getting drier all the time. No figures were given, of course, and to nobody's surprise there followed about 12 hours of steady rain with interruptions of downpour.
Nobody knows how this happens but everybody has noticed that whenever there are comments or predictions about heat, drought or just a drier climate, the skies open and people gloomily start thinking about arks. The whole thing is as hard to explain as it is to answer the obvious question as to what is the outcome of the Standard's worthy but endless campaigns.
Do more children leave primary schools being able to read and write? Has (relative) poverty been abolished in London? Are gangs a things of the past? Who can tell? Since most of these campaigns approach the same problems from different angles, the suspicion remains that apart from a few isolated cases of success (and one cheers for them, of course) they get absolutely nowhere. In which case, we ought to know what happens to the very large sums raised by the newspaper.
Enough of these digressions. The other article that caught my eye was by John Cridland, Director-General of the CBI, whose pronouncement ahead of that organization's conference, much touted everywhere, was that the UK has to stay in the EU but that the EU must reform. I could find no mention of airborne pigs.
It is quite extraordinary that the arguments organizations like the CBI trotted out to prove that Britain had to join the euro and which have been proved to be absolute nonsense are now trotted out to prove that Britain has to stay in the EU. Why are we even listening to these people? By no stretch of the imagination can the CBI be said to represent British business in its majority, let alone its entirety.
At this point I think I should remind my readers of the posting about that doughty fighter against the CBI and its economical attitude to the truth, Brigadier Anthony Cowgill.