News commentary and predictions of political trends and what the future holds

Welcome to Disturbing Trends

A diary of the politics of the future and their consequences.


The Labour Leadership

UK: The leadership of the Labour Party has been contentious ever since Ed Milliband snatched it from his brother David and became Leader of the Opposition after Gordon Brown had spectacularly lost the election 2010 following claims Labour overspending had caused the deficit to balloon after the 2008 financial crisis. That claim seemed to provide a rationale to give power to the Conservatives, but not exclusively, going into coalition with the doomed Liberal Democrats. In the following election rout, Ed Milliband lost even more spectacularly as did the Liberal Democrats, giving power to a somewhat surprised Conservative Government. Ed Milliband resigned and now Labour is electing a new leader.

Left-wing outsider Jeremy Corbyn entered the race at the last minute, and against all odds has become the odds-on favourite to win the leadership, touting left-wing ideals such as free education and the cancellation of the nuclear Trident scheme, completely at odds with the other three candidates who seem to be too similar to each other to fight the surge of popularity of Corbynmania.

In the meantime Labour heavyweights have pitched in to criticise the prospect of a Corbyn led Labour party. Tony Blair has twice written articles saying it could finish the Labour party as his policies were not electable.

Air Pollution

Breathing Space

Long ago Disturbing Trends identified air pollution as the primary problem facing human survival. It seems that via the alarm of the consequences of global warming which is now climate change or instability the idea that our cities can kill us now seems evident. The most frightening aspect of which is that for many, the damage is already being inflicted. On us. On all life in badly polluted cities. Live hard, die young. Almost guaranteed.

Now posh Delhi homes can get air filters which no doubt in a constant kind of way have a daily cost in energy multiplied by 3 million homes this may expand into therefore making the air of Delhi pollute another part of the country sigificantly whilst protecting the lives of these inhabitants. Or they could create stronger norms of industrial behaviour: e.g. using filters on chimneys by immediate legislation or your factory gets shut down. The government could help those in financial need. Remove the pollution because tolerating it is making your environment, i.e. all life forms at risk of extinction.

It is beyond comprehension why

The UK Election

20 days away still

Read this excellent analysis of what is wrong with the Tories and the Lib Dems in Coalition. I really wonder at the Clegg strategy of saying he makes the best carping fishwife to either possible Prime Minister. It badly stinks to assume the power of Deputy PM with such certainty. He comes off as a complete ego strutting cock, the sincere hope for any future of the Liberal Democrats is that this man loses his seat. They could do so much better than moderate dictatorship.

Both parties could go into coalition with the Lib Dems, but this leader is toast if he halves the vote for his party. If he loses half his seats, that is another matter.

The half logical and half disastrous rise of UKiP (I spell it that way as independence is what is so unimportant to the development of this very right wing group attracting the worst of the Tories. Maybe we will have a Conservative party that actually does some good as all its extreme members desert it. Independence of UK is the same story as Scottish independence. In the final analysis it does not make sense.

21 days to go

Lib Dem agreed to a referendum on AV – that basically spelt their doom. AV is not the best form of democracy. I think the NZ system of Mixed Member Proportional is better but wonder why we do not change our voting system.

A slim “majority” meant a Tory led coalition that doubled the national debt with austerity. I predict we will get exactly what we do not need as a result of our FPP election, i.e. Tory and Ukip in coalition with Lib Dem and SNP offering support when it suits their interests.

22 days to go

Can Nick Clegg keep his role as Deputy PM?

Twitter analysis of the debates early April

Climate Change

The Guardian is putting Climate Change “front and centre”.


Is it possible to grow up believing that others are not as worthy as you are. That there is a difference between you and others based on what you believe? Of course it is.

Most young people attach to one thing or another to their souls as they negotiate with the world. For some it is sport or pursuit of a mate. For others is a religious belief. The developing mind seems prone to go off on terrible tangents. Youth can act with a severity that no other age would likely tolerate or appreciate. The trick is to grow up successfully despite those who would lock us into teenaged angst through our whole lives. These include pederastic predators, certain cults and religious schools as well as dangerous sports and war.

Is ISIS a terrorist organisation, a revolution or simply a creation of the CIA? It probably is all three in its relationship with the external world. But internally it seems to operate like a cult with: hidden language, secrets and revelations, fervent worship of a figurehead, fear, a central philosophy to believe in and a powerful adhesive force that locks people into its grip.

By creating freedom fighter armies the warmongers are able to assist in proxy wars but creating an armed force has a certain danger. They may treat populations as the enemy as would appear to be the case with the ISIL terrorists. By proclaiming a caliphate they seek legitimacy in the modern world by using its technology to enslave and intimidate people.

They arose out of Iraq and Syria and have installed themselves, murdering thousands and enslaving entire populations to their teenaged whims. Their violence is extraordinary and completely out of place in modern civilisation. Are they any worse than Bashir Assad and his civil war and devastation of Syria? They are, because they are fighting a war they want to take to the world. And the world does not want to live like that so resistance is inevitable.

However that speaks of a future, at the present they control much of Iraq and Syria.

Religion and Extinction

We are different to any other species in that we have evolved what we call economics, science of extending survival. Or is it a massive inter-generational war that the current political generation are guilty of, increasingly responsible for causing environmental collapse.

Why do we measure progress by growth? When we solve that one, and measure progress with an economics that includes compounding interest for any future consequence of our indulgence.

Only then we can call ourselves good Christians or good Muslims or good Jews. We remain greedy and primitive in our mutual interests. Why think like this?

Part of the lesson of certain matters remaining secular and out of the control of the driving faith or the possessors of property or the military – but that the ultimate control must remain honestly in the hands of the people. So we have countries for that. But faith is a personal matter and your path to your saviour or prophet is a relationship between your self and something all powerful. Therefore when you are praying together it is as though a casting of individual threads to your personal heaven is a revelation to the self, not to the army, not to the workforce, not to the merchants, the bankers or even the holy ones we listen to preach their secret messages in sermons to the initiated. In all religions there seems to be a strata that pulls people up – spirituality is a wonderful thing, don’t get me wrong.

Having to take sides for your whole life is the commitment of belief. But the essence of individuality is the thing. It is the most important and elusive thing. Your thread can vibrate within a group but it can also find its own pattern. It does not matter. If we align beliefs into destructive paths then as a group we start to consume that which we have no right to, we take that we have to leave alone. The first lesson in The Book of Genesis was not to take the forbidden fruit from the tree of knowledge or die. Not to take the irreplaceable fruit means we must consider requirements of future life in our consumption.

The ways in which competing religions have interpreted this basic tenet of their own belief is astounding. The destruction of species is wanton, selfish and will result on our own death.

These words or wisdom are drowned by the clash of battle as we fight for our set of beliefs. But this fundamental exists. If we sow extinction, then we will become extinct. I am just not sure if today’s political science really gives a damn about the future.

The Greenhouse Treaty

China and America have agreed to targets for reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2025 for America, and 2030 for China. On the scale of problems, China is a significant player, with a much larger population competing for resources as economic growth strides into the greener parts, its lungs, pollution is rife, significant and horrendous to the increasingly aware population. It is they who are served by a mutual accord of the current world leaders. Both have already made history.

China’s pollution is evidence of a population growing too fast. Economic growth is reflective of a certain attitude to risk. Countries are examples to each other of how to do it or how to do it all wrong. Overheated economies destroy our habitats. The solution is not war, economic war or invasion. It is much easier than that.

According to World Bank figures for 2010 – 2011, developed nations afford to include the exponential cost of environmental damage, on the index the UK is about 20. China is 60. But compare that to Botswana, at 199. The problem is not China. It is the misuse of resources and the rape of land by too many competitive hungry humans. We have to evolve to stop killing our future.

We can do this by simply changing our thinking. Our economic system needs to evolve into one that is geared to reward economic contraction. Our religious beliefs need to encompass a new spiritual path that includes a respect for all life and ones descendants who are as much us as we are our ancestors.

Iain Duncan Smith

It is up to us.

Every adult has a vote, and enough judgement. One does not have to be socialist to see that this the Minister for Social Welfare is a liability to the welfare of all people. He thinks he has decreased unemployment by making life impossible for the many who rely upon welfare due to their own unemployment. Job seekers get sanctioned when they do not attend interviews, but too many injustices point toward a cruel and heartless system that has let people die.

Iain Duncan Smith’s IT project to consolidate benefits under the brand “Universal Benefit” is a bit like a flat tax, in that it should reduce administration costs. This IT project is failing to deliver, exceeding costs and seems out of control.

Any well meaning citizen can fail, and the security provided by a welfare system prevents what we see on the streets of cities, what we hear about in the taxed bedrooms of the disabled and deaths due to the unfair Job Centre sanctions. This social experiment is like a child torturing flies.

The Conservatives and their role in this government have not improved the economic lot of the majority and it is up to us, the majority of fair minded people from both sides of the political divide to ensure that they do not continue after 2015. Increased wealth is no good if you live in a nation of corpses.

Todays comments

A few Disturbing Trends with our comments in The Guardian:

7 Aug 2014

Boris Johnson’s bid for parliamentary return in 2015 leaves Tories divided

The true blue conservative denies they are running until the finish line is in view, their competitors unprepared, relaxed and busy elsewhere can then make a huffing and puffing dash for the main prize.

Salmond rallies SNP backbenchers after independence debate

If the UK had a government which paid a little more than latent lip service to the parts of the country that are not London, I really wonder if the Scots would fight for independence. The popularity of this possibly economically difficult endeavour is an indictment of the Coalition and the unfair lot dealt to the many to enrich the very few.

Democracy will finally defeat that act of “mentalism”. But the question, what options do we really have? That question is the emotional argument that precedes this revolution.

Of course we may be “better together”, but the majority have to ask “better for whom?”

NIESR says economic recovery slowing after weaker manufacturing figures

I fear that like the previous government’s folly with the city, and the horrors of the 70s recessions, that it is “shock” that suddenly causes fragile recovery to be history and disaster to be the sounding board for electability. It is “old thinking” that is still leading economic planning and reactivity to timebombs that manufactures “heroes”.
In other words you are so brilliantly right. Open your business to the world. Dependence upon “economic growth” (based on the value of assets) is simply not getting us anywhere.

Sorry, George but increasing London property prices is not economic growth. You got to create industries, cause people to invest in and start new ventures, be willing to take risks.
Worrying about interest rates and the resale value of your nest egg stultifies imagination and reduces the rationale for business growth. It is not just investment bankers having dosh, it is the actual activity that seems to be faltering.

6 Aug 2014 – on Martin Rowson’s cartoon on Lady Warsi’s resignation

Being “right minded” seems to be a qualification. Or is that encoded tory propaganda or merely ukip splashing about in puddles?

Or that vacancy leading the Liberal Democrats, he may have to resign also.

…governments that pendulum swing between building and destroying systems – how much waste that does that create? Democracy under First Past the Post is truly the most inefficient system, especially when it is polarised between opposite sets of values. Proportional representation is more effective as they get to be far less adventurous as their mandate is less total.