Tuesday, 31 May 2011

The Ball's In Your Court

The tides of the North Sea relentlessly roll in, washing the shores of Streonæshalch, bringing with them all manner of detritus to present to the awaiting sands. In much the same way, the tides of human stupidity continue to roll undaunted, laying all kinds of rubbish at the feet of Northumbrian consciousness.

After last week's excitement (yawn) concerning the Great Cosmic Non-Event of Harold The Campsite and Bugrake O'Drama's Great Condescending Visit to these lesser shores, I was rather hoping for a break. It's nice to have some time out to contemplate the joys of being a catfelinity, I suppose you could call it. But something else always seems to crop up to grab my attention, and force me once again to contemplate the fallen human condition.

Football is a game beloved of the majority of humans here in the lovely country of Northumbria; it's particularly adored by the males, but on occasions, women may also be seen at games – if only to repeatedly ask about the Offside Rule. A game introduced by the ancient Romans, the Beautiful Game has been played on these islands for millennia. Like fishing, it's an ideal way for men and boys to while away a pleasant hour or two – either playing the game, arguing about a match in the ale and mead houses, fighting opposing team's supporters with clubs, or even watching a favourite team engage in ninety minutes of foot-to-foot combat. Sometimes the ball is involved… Rightly or wrongly, the most favoured team in the Kingdom is Madcaster Untied, with its legions of overpaid, inarticulate celebrity gorillas players, but every settlement and town has its own band of local heroes who emulate their Madcaster Untied mentors.

What I hadn't realised (O, feline folly) is that it is necessary for the Game of Football in Northumbria to be organised and supervised by a self-appointed cartel of ancients called the Football Society who – it would seem – find it necessary to preside over the kicking round of a pig's bladder. Not only that - they also command a great deal of awe, power and prestige. I suspect that most of these ancients are retired businessmen who've never actually spent a Saturday afternoon on the terraces or the football field in their earlier years. The Football Society justifies its existence by setting draconian penalties for those whose bad example bring the game into Disrepute. In many respects they would make an effective substitute for the judiciary and the Moots of these Anglo-Saxon realms..

But that's not all. There's also a higher Football Society for the Holy Roman Empire (which is neither holy, Roman nor an empire), which presides over the international game. This is run by expensively-attired retired bandits and crooks, and serves as a front for very dubious backroom deals, bribes and all of the other shady practices one comes to expect of the High and the Mighty. And recently there's been a campaign by the soothsayers, calling for the head of Stepp Blather – the current president of the Holy Roman Empire (which is neither holy, Roman nor an empire) Football Society. Why? – Because some of his accomplices have been discovered to have taken bribes and have therefore been removed from office. Shock horror. I bet they breathe and pass wind as well…

Old Steppo said in a statement recently there's no crisis in the Beautiful game. Of course there's no crisis. It's just as venal and corrupt now as it ever was...

Friday, 27 May 2011

Non-raptured, Enraptured, Ed Captured

After such an eventful week, I'm exhausted! There's only so much that a poor little old Cat can take.

Last weekend was marked by the great Cosmic Rapture Non-event of Harold The Campsite's prognostication. I wasn't expecting it to happen according to either his timetable or his specification - although I've no doubt that the Redeemer will one day return to wind up this present order. As I'd already expected, old Campervan's already re-defined the non-event as a 'spiritual' phenomenon. That's what these flim-flam merchants always do: it's the oldest - and most unimaginative - trick in the book. The next Cosmic Rapture is going to happen in September, when the holidays are over, so I would advise you to keep a note of it in your diaries, in case you miss it. I wonder what holiday plans old Campers has this year? I hear that Cyrene and Bactria are sought-after locations these days.. I see a regular one-way traffic of longboats replete with with soldiers destined for those shores - I think it must be to their taste...

And then - no sooner had the excitement had abated - when, lo and behold! Bugrake O'Drama, the silver-tongued King Of Ultima Thule came to bless these humble shores with his impressive physique, his oratory and his common touch with the window-licking aristocracy and soothsayers, whose deference reflex went into spasm. He certainly went down a storm over here - but oddly, nobody can now remember a single word he said. Funny, that.

He's now hypnotising audiences in the Holy Roman Empire (which is neither holy, Roman nor an empire). The degree of bankruptcy of the kingdoms he visits will substantially increase; he has very expensive tastes. I wonder if he managed to get a loan from the Northumbrian taxpayer through the good graces of King Alhfrith? If he did, it's my guess that he's already spent it.

And now - to add the capstone to a glorious week - Edweird The Milliner is getting married. Today. In Nottingham, a Mercian settlement south of the Mighty Humber. This occasion is marked by an uncharacteristic lack of publicity, unlike the Walthelm and Gytha bash a month ago. Even Eddy Boy's most slavering and sycophantic soothsayers like Beeby See and Guardy-Ann aren't invited to the wedding ceremony and festivities. I hope they can make room for all of the Milliner children. I'm sure that the select band of guests will be sipping from the finest champagne from the vineyards of Charlemagne. These Redistributionists certainly know a thing or two about living the high life - at taxpayers' expense, of course.

Actually, I'm going to let you into a little secret. I happen to know the butcher who was commissioned to supply the meat for the main course, and I paid a clandestine visit to his storeroom when he was busy. I took a sample bite out of every chunk of the reserved lamb joints, and I can categorically say that they're delicious. Those guests are in for a treat. I hope they don't mind the teethmarks...

O have it on good authority that Edweird the Nuts - the slobbering and mendacious Shadow Chancellor - will be giving the Best Man's speech; I think the content of his discourse will suit the assembled guests well, as he specialises in fantasy. I can only guess that they've taken their umbrellas - a great deal of wet weather proceeds from his mouth when he speaks. I hope they've also had the presence of mind to bring their cushions; it makes me feel tired to contemplate it...

I hope Edweird The Milliner and his bride have a great time and a delightful honeymoon in Tripoli. I hear it's lovely this time of year. It'll give them an ideal opportunity to catch up on some Redistributionist gossip with their old friend the crazy, khat-chewing, chandelier-swinging despot O'Daffy.

Happy days.

Thursday, 26 May 2011

Appearances and Disappearances

I swear there has to be something special about Bugrake O'Drama. I don't know what it is: whether it's his grandiloquence, his regal bearing, his tall physique and swarthy, exotic complexion. Maybe it's a charisma - or some such will o'the wisp, undefinable quality. I don't know, but there's something...
To the delusional masses who slavishly and unthinkingly fall in with window-licking soothsayers like the partially impartial Beeby See and Guardy-Ann - along with the liberally illiberal, magic mushroom-fuelled Redistributionist Faction, Bugrake O'Drama is a messianic figure: the incarnation of all their idealistic, hallucinogenic fantasies. Their sycophancy would be wondrous to behold, were it not for the urge that it occasions to retch, gag and heave uncontrollably. I've had several purges already...

But as this Answer To All Known Problems swans off in the distance to grace the Franks and other stooges of the Holy Roman Empire (which is neither holy, Roman nor an empire) with his enchanting persona and spread his sanctity about, I'm left asking the following questions:
1. Why has Húne - known as the Horehound - disappeared? Is there some connection between his sudden disappearance from view and Borax O'Drama's visit? Was he one of the Raptured Few? (Perhaps Harold The Campsite was right all along, but failed to make the blessed number himself..)
2. Why has Guffmund The Brown suddenly reappeared from his self-imposed exile when Botox O'Drama arrived? I heard rumours that after his self-appointed mission to save the world from the evil ravages of solvency was completed, he sought and found a cave, and dwelt there as a hermit, living on Witangemot expenses and Arbroath Smokies.

This Bograck O'Drama fellow must be special, if he can make one person vanish and another one mysteriously reappear...

Wednesday, 25 May 2011

O'Drama, Dance and Tap

Everyone is SO excited here in Streonaeshalch, in the lovely country of Northumbria; the flags, bunting and banners have been madly flapping in the high winds, and there's a pervasive air of festivity around the place. The reason for this new outbreak of enthusiasm is the recent arrival of His Royal Highness Bugrake O'Drama - the Emperor of Ultima Thule - to these shores, and everyone is joyfully occupied with making the place spick and span for His Nibs' visit.

King Bugrake O'Drama has sailed over from the far-flung reaches of his substantial empire to pay a state visit to King Alhfrith and his potty-mouthed Queen Hillida, and to grace the national Witangemot with his presence.. Whatever.

The Ultima Thule Emperor is a suave, smooth-talking man. One can imagine him - were he to be denied the trappings of nobility and royalty - selling used carts or old horses to undiscerning members of the public, or engaging in the business of persuading the gullible to part with their groats in exchange for some well-spun tale of fantasy. Words of golden eloquence easily tumble from his chops, but this Cat can't help wondering what kind of gold it really is. I suspect it's the fool's variety. He seldom fails to impress those who fall under the hypnotic cadences of his voice and his streams of grandiloquence.

Whenever an Ultima Thule dignitary visits these shores, one invariably expects to hear a great deal of rhetoric and rhubarb about The Special Relationship between the two kingdoms which, in reality, means that Ultima Thule - the larger of the two countries by far - extorts trade and military loyalty from the Northumbrians in exchange for the latest crumbs and leftovers cast from their lavish table. This visit has been no different.

At the Royal Banquet last night, the after-dinner speeches began after the copious consumption of mead and ale. When King Bugrake O'Drama started to give his address to the King, Queen and assembled window-licking throng, the band suddenly and unexpectedly struck up with that ancient Saxon air 'Roll Out The Barrel,' and the assembled multitude - without thinking - started to dance as their reflexes took over. (I believe that the conductor of the band is being hog-roasted tonight.)

The Emperor also visited the leading politicos and Caedmeron, and shared some hot jokes and golfing tips with them. Edweird The Milliner could scarcely conceal his delight: he was like a dog doing the Dance Of The Seven Tails.

But behind all this theatre and ritual dancing, what has the Emperor really come over for? Nobody really knows for sure; previous occupants of the Ultima Thule crown have usually drummed up some more trade or a pledge to throw more soldiers into one of their battles, but in these straitened times, O'Drama's the king of a bankrupt castle - much like his European counterpart Emperor Jose Borracho, the power-crazed megalomaniac Commander-In-Chief of the Holy Roman Empire (which is neither holy, Roman nor an empire).

Since Northumbrian groats are presently being used (at the expense of the long-suffering taxpayer) to help the Irish overcome their severe financial embarrassment, and since King Alhfrith went over to Ireland on a State Visit recently to survey his new property, this Cat can only conclude that Bugrake O'Drama has come over to tap the King up for a loan...

Tuesday, 24 May 2011

Keeping It Dark

Well, the furore about the legally concealed misdeeds of wealthy and clueless Northumbrian miscreants rumbles on, and the stupidity continues apace. Yesterday, a highly esteemed member of the Witangemot (whose name eludes me - I'm an old and forgetful cat - I think it was something like Lemming) named aloud to the assembled throng of window-lickers the footballer called "Rhino" Biggs who'd paid gazillions of groats to avaricious lawyers to take out an injunction to keep his sordid dalliances with another woman secret. I think he wanted to keep it from his poor wife. Lemming was a bit behind the times: the name of this gentleman was already common knowledge and the talk of every mead parlour and alehouse in the Kingdom. Nice work, Lemming. By the way - would you like to see some cliffs? We have some nice ones here near Streonaeshalch...

It now appears that there are thirty million other wealthy footballers - all of whom play for Madcaster Untied - who have also paid gazillions of groats to avaricious lawyers for the same purpose. So far their identities are hidden from public view, and securely locked up in the decaying remnant of a brain that resides in the cranial cavities of  Soothsayers like Beeby See, Dellymell and Guardy-Ann. Or so they think..

I've come to realise that the legal system in the human world is yet another theatre of the absurd. It was originally designed to preserve justice and equity - to punish the evildoers and compensate those who've suffered as a result of the misdeeds of others. There's a basic human code of behaviour designed to honour integrity, and based on the Ten Commandments - given by the Almighty through the prophet Moses. Without it, all human society would collapse into a chaotic heap. However, the legal system has become a marketplace, where justice is a commodity, bought and sold at a premium for the highest bidder - which means that overpaid and over-indulgent twinkletoes (who usually struggle to connect coherent sentences) can line the pockets of legal beagles and get them to cover a multitude of their sins.

And now - to heap absurdity upon absurdity - the Powers That Be have threatened to arrest and incarcerate anyone who chatters and twitters the nameless names of any of the feckless idiots who've donated from their deep pockets to the legal fraternity. I forsee that every drinking Northumbrian yeoman and artisan is going to be in prison soon. I hope they've got enough cells - they're already over-populated with old dears who've wickedly allowed their dogs to pass brown judgement on the paths and pavements of Northumbria.. O tempus, O mores.

For the thirty million (unknown) footballers, I have a piece of CC advice - fresh from the cat's mouth. Take up a hobby; learn to read books, knit or shoot longbows. It'll keep you out of mischief and save you a vast amount of money, since it'll keep it out of the pockets of the lawyers. And stay at home with the wife. I'm sure she has some jobs you can do around the house. Do Something Constructive.

Monday, 23 May 2011

Watch My Apocalypse

Well, it was as I suspected: The End Of The World didn't happen - at least, not for Harold The Campsite and his loyal followers in that fantasy land I refer to as Ultima Thule. Perhaps there were so few of the  raptured ones taken upwards to Heaven that their disappearance hasn't been noticed yet. But somehow I doubt it. I imagine old Harold is scratching his head at the moment and experiencing an existential crisis. He and his ilk really ought to read their bibles properly and give what they read careful and prayerful thought - and not simply look at the pictures. Caedmon - or any of the monks at the Streonaeshalch Abbey - could have set him straight for nothing and ultimately spared him and his acolytes a lot of hand-wringing; but some people are disinclined to approach the Church about these things, and prefer to either trust their own addled judgement, or heed the half-baked counsel of the likes of Archbishop Georges Moonbat, the fly agaric-chewing head of the Global Warming cult. He'd get quite a different theology from him - based around rising tides, melting icecaps and poor little polar bears. Some people just never learn.

It's not insignificant that so many of these barmy ideas seem to proceed from Ultima Thule.. One of them is visiting The Emerald Isle today, in an attempt to upstage His Majesty King Alhfrith...

Nevertheless, as far as certain people are concerned, it is the End Of The World.

Take old hoary-headed Húne - known as 'Horehound' - for example. As a political shining light, he had a sparkling career in the inner sanctum of the Witangemot, darting to and fro from expense-funded environmental summits abroad, talking the talk and quacking the quack. He could play a pantomime dame in the Witangemot theatre with the best of them - oh yes, he could - right behind you... But it would appear that this man - now a fugitive from the relentless machinations of Northumbrian justice - is desperately trying to recover what minuscule credibility he has left, but the case against him is stacking up impressively. The word 'toast' springs to this cat's mind...

I think it's also the End Of The World for those who think they can continue to hide their dirty misdeeds behind a cloak of legally-imposed secrecy and get away with it. While we may have the best legal brains and politicians that money can buy, they can't suppress the truth for long. And it comes back unexpectedly to bite them in the back parts - just like the real End Of The World will..

Friday, 20 May 2011

The Campsite On World's End

It appears that The End Is Nigh - or so Beeby See smirkingly tells us. This beloved soothsayer - satiated with her own smugness - has reported that some strange religious leader called Harold The Campsite in Ultima Thule has predicted that the world will end this weekend. The atheists - so Beeby gleefully tells us - are planning a huge party as a gesture of contempt and ridicule. Much ale, cider and mead will be consumed - and many magic mushrooms will be chewed, no doubt. Whoop-de-doo.

Well - bully for Harold. He's evidently party to some esoteric knowledge that isn't imparted to the majority of Christian mortals. I wonder where he got this juicy morsel of hot news from? Did the Almighty have a quiet word in his shell-like? I doubt it. If I were a betting cat, I'd lay a few groats on the probability that he juggled around a few biblical symbols and metaphors, threw a few bones, did a few sums - and lo and behold! An End Date For The World.

Sorry, Harold, old boy. You're just one of a legion of daft old goats who have made a sport and pastime of this kind of thing throughout history - and if I had a groat for every such prediction that failed to deliver, I'd give Croesus a run for his money. The Redeemer clearly said that the date wasn't up for grabs - not even to the best guesser or the most astute interpreter of Holy Writ. And the Almighty has a tendency to let such prognosticators get egg on their faces for good measure - usually smelly and rotten. And then the Date gets mysteriously re-scheduled as they try to justify themselves... dorks, or what..?

As for Beeby See, the other soothsayers and the atheists - they can bray and guffaw as much as they like. Let me make a prediction of my own: I predict a lot thumping heads and bad stomachs the following morning - and at some indeterminate time in the future, but certain nonetheless  - a very unpleasant surprise. And its precise date and time is not in a human timetable.


Wednesday, 18 May 2011

Trouble In Alliance Paradise

What with Húne - known as 'Horehound' and all of the intrigue around his alleged misdemeanours - along with those of deposed luminary Claws - the Alliance is having more than its fair share of troubles. You can't imagine the tears I've shed for them all in these last few days. Well, I suppose you can: cats don't weep, so none. ;-)

What has made Caedmeron's day even worse is his
Witangemot Supremo Clerk for Justice - a rotund, bumptious buffoon with a dismissive, devil-may-care attitude to life and the price of fish. Frankly, I'm surprised he's stayed in the job as long as he has, given his outstanding track record for talking complete gibberish.

The Supreme Clerk was speaking with a Beeby See lackey today, and the subject came up about rather unsavoury kinds of personal assault - which I will henceforth refer to as Pulling Legs Off Poor Spiders (PLOPS), since it requires the perpetrator to be of a similarly heartless and moronic disposition.

I fail to see how anyone can be minded to pull wings off butterflies or pull legs off poor spiders, but the reality in a fallen world is that certain specimens of quasi-humanity do commit such things, and the poor victims are left with a terrible emotional and physical legacy - a cost which has also to be borne by their loved ones. I'm very relieved that there's such a thing as Divine Retribution.

Anyway. A poor female victim of a PLOPS assault asked the
Supreme Clerk about sentencing in view of the proposed changes in prison terms for such evildoers. It appears that there are so many old ladies who permit their dogs to pass brown political comment in the streets, and the prisons are unable to cope with the number of them awaiting justice, so the length of incarceration for serious offenders needs to be reduced to allow the real criminals to be punished.

And the old joker started waffling about 'classic' PLOPS attacks - and attempting to make a distinction between various forms of this nasty assault. The lady was in tears as the old fool dug himself deeper into his hole of stupidity. I swear I heard the sound of boiling blood throughout the Kingdom of Northumbria. And the sharpening of blades. Edweird the Milliner has awoken from his magic mushroom-induced slumbers and has smelt blood.

Caedmeron - I think you've got your work cut out, old son. My fellow moggies and my mate Feaxede could do an infinitely better job than some of the feckless clowns you seem to want to employ.. and all they want in return for remuneration is daily fish suppers and chicken dinners. It would solve the deficit problem overnight. Go home and think about it, there's a good lad... you know it makes sense.

Tuesday, 17 May 2011

King Alhfrith's Grand Day Out

It's a Great Day today; it must be, because Beeby See has told me so - and she should know. She knows everything- or so she would like us all to think. This cat is inclined to believe that Beeby See knows nothing - but she proceeds under the illusion that if she keeps talking, she'll actually learn something. Pardon me while I just avoid the colorectal payload of a passing flying pig...

It's a great day today because for the first time in recorded history, King Alhfrith has touched the shores of the Emerald Isle - that bastion of independence and rabid anti-Anglo-Saxon sentiment. I do hope he's decided to leave his foul-mouthed Queen Hillida at home - she has such an aptitude to fart loudly, get drunk and indiscriminately tell dirty jokes, thus offending sensitive souls. I'm surprised she hasn't caused an international incident...

Actually, I wasn't completely accurate there: it wasn't for the first time an Anglo-Saxon monarch landed there to pay the Hibernian Scots - known as Irish - a visit: King Edwin went there about thirty thousand years ago - when the Irish were more kindly disposed towards the barbarous Germanic hordes.

Most Irish people will be quite happy to see the old boy grace them with his presence as he waddles his way, waving benignly through the streets of Dyflin, but inevitably there will be those detractors who insist on making a noise and a stink about it. In view of the fact that Anglo-Saxons have traditionally assumed that the Emerald Isle was reserved for them - and they've been quite content to bludgeon the poor inhabitants into unwilling submission, I can't say I blame their resentment. But Alhfrith goes there with a good will - especially since Caedmeron and his merry band of brigands and flim-flam men in the Witangemot have decided to help our Irish neighbours in their hour of financial need. At Northumbrian taxpayers' expense, naturally.

But I suspect that the real attraction is the horses. Alhfrith is a sucker for a good gee-gee - and a flutter with the bookies. And the Irish know a thing or two about them to be sure, so they do.

Monday, 16 May 2011

The Smooch Of Death

You can always tell when someone's political career is about to reach its inglorious conclusion when the Beloved Faction Leader publicly expresses full confidence in the person concerned...

A certain Liberationist luminary called Húne - known as 'Horehound' has been in hot water of late. This gentleman was originally given the task of heading up the Ministry of the "Environment" - which - as the pre-eminent non-job in the Witangemot - is a ragbag of assorted fantasies and fairy stories, perpetuated by the likes of His Holiness Archbishop Georges Moonbat - the world's leading fly agaric chewer and global warming shaman. Horehound has thrown himself zealously into the fantasy, attending prestigious and expensive "Environment" conferences around the fleshpots of the Holy Roman Empire (which is neither holy, Roman nor an empire) and Ultima Thule on behalf of the Kingdom of Northumbria, travelling to these exotic locations on the best possible longboats, and faring sumptuously from the feasts - all laid on, needless to say, at taxpayers' expense. No expense spared to save the Planet, the Environment, and the poor polar bears who are getting stranded and sunburned on the melting ice. Whatever.

has been out of the picture recently, since there's only a limited number of times that a politician can wring his hands and plaintively utter platitudes like, "This Is The Last Chance For Our Planet" and "Something Must Be Done," - which, roughly translated into human speech means "We Need To Raise More Taxes From The Unwashed."

But we needn't worry about the poor chap; his life hasn't been completely devoid of meaning and purpose. He's been busy breaking the Law Of the Northumbrian Kingdom by riding his cart at breakneck speed, thus putting the lives of elderly ladies, children, cats, dogs and chickens in considerable danger. But his trusty former wife has apparently come to the rescue and secretly admitted responsibility for his crimes, and out of the goodness of her heart has paid his hefty fines so that no one would ever know he was the actual transgressor. Noble indeed - especially from a former wife..

But now the truth has come to light, and he's been keeping a low profile. And his Liberationist mentor Clegge - along with Caedmeron - the Chief Cock And Bluebottle Washer of the Tree Party and the Leader of the Alliance Administration - has expressed his full support and assured him of his complete confidence.

The blacksmiths are busy of late. I hear the sharpening of knives...

Thursday, 12 May 2011

A New Nation Is Born

What I'm going to tell you may not be completely factually correct, so please don't pass the contents of this posting to the media - unless you've checked it for accuracy beforehand, of course. The Cat is not liable for any factually inaccurate information. I can perfect the purrs, but I know I'm not perfect - and I'm not above getting hold of the wrong end of the stick. Cats were never designed by their Creator to be political animals; I have to face up to the fact that I'm some aberration - an exception to the rule.

As I understand it - and not many know this, but a new Nation is secretly in the throes of being born.

It started in the faraway-somewhere place I refer to as Ultima Thule, where a costumed thug referred to some females of the human species as Sluts.

Now, I'm pretty well-educated, and I've had a great deal of exposure to the realms of human existence. But when I asked my master Caedmon what a Slut was, for some reason or other, he wouldn't tell me. So consequently I've had to do some digging around to get to the bottom of the issue.

I commenced my search with my trusty friend Leo. He's a Big Cat in a cage, and he's pretty clued in about human things. I asked him if he had any idea, but he hadn't heard of the term. But it was nice to see him, for all that. After exchanging a few bits of news with him, I moved on to look for Feaxede, the fox-about-town. I found him (you'll never guess where!), engaged in his favourite hobby of archaeological research.

When I asked him what a Slut was, he told me he'd heard of the term; he'd heard it used by intoxicated wasters during his perambulations on a Saturday night - but he didn't actually know what it meant. A chicken carcass beckoned, so I left him to his frenzied activities.

Having exhausted all my usual avenues of enquiry, I checked out my pal Láréow - the feline secret agent Rat-Befriender who is my prime source of tasty gossip from Caedmeron's Official Residence. When I asked him the same question, he immediately told me what it meant, but owing to the sensitivity of the subject, he had to tell me that he couldn't swear on the accuracy of his information. I get the drift...

The country of Slutland is fast moving to become a separate Nation, as it divides from the Anglo-Saxon sphere of influence. It will have its own Parliament, and its own separate culture and Sluttish language. This development has been the outcome of the steadfast endeavours of the Sluttish National Faction under the able and inspirational leadership of its First Minister, Angus McTrout. Whatever.

The Sluts are very pleased with the idea, but in their evident enthusiasm and nationalistic fervour, they seem to be blissfully unaware that their utopian dream of independence will in reality lead them to the welcoming stranglehold of the Holy Roman Empire (which is neither holy, Roman nor an empire) and its power-crazed megalomaniac despot Emperor Jose Borracho and his half-baked henchman Hermit, who - despite claiming a soft spot for the Sluts - have no benign plans for them.

But who am I to tell them? I'm only some common-or-garden moggy...

Wednesday, 11 May 2011

Differently The Same...

Every soothsayer of note in the lovely realm of Northumbria is talking about The Anniversary. It's now One Whole Year since the Tree-Liberationist Alliance decisively swept to power in the National Witangemot and delivered the Kingdom from the Powers of Redistributionist Darkness under the malevolent, magic mushroom-intoxicated sway of Guthmund The Brown - the world-saving Bankrupter-In-Chief.

Some of the soothsayers - for example Beeby See and her pustule-faced cousin Guardy-Ann - have been claiming that the past year has been an Unmitigated Disaster. One of the reasons for this pronouncement of damnation is the fact that the Alliance administration has imposed Severe Cuts to the public purse; consequently, hovel improvement pack officers, diversity administrators, carbon-neutral petshop co-ordinators, pigeon psychiatrists, fish quota accountants and other feckless drawers of worthwhile salaries and pensions have been cast into the Outer Darkness of the jobseeking hordes. The Strongholds of The Wicked have been torn down. Nearly.

In the woes pronounced by these soothsayers, the entire basis for Civilised Society has been destroyed by the malicious, brutal and heartless Tree-led Alliance, who are imposing their own agenda on the Kingdom under the pretense that there's a financial crisis that doesn't really exist. Alas, alack. Pass the champagne, magic mushrooms and handkerchiefs, Parly Toywasp...

Even more traditionally sympathetic soothsayers are failing to lavish paeons of praise upon the nouveau régime. Dellimell - one with a usually hysterical and effusive disposition in favour of the Trees - has taken a lot of trouble to highlight the divisions and differences between the disparate Alliance factions and their Revered Leaders.

So - what difference has a year really made?

For a start, we're no longer delighted by the brooding and cheerless countenance of the psychotic Guthmund The Brown. The effect of his demeanour upon the realm was as refreshing and as welcome as an outbreak of the Bubonic Plague. The relief of not having to see his physiognomy is enormous. This must not be underestimated.

Also, it must be said that our beloved Leaders are no longer taking out enormous loans from unscrupulous loan-sharks and spending it on frivolous social projects designed to boost the odds of re-election for Redistributionist politicos. The Alliance is still spending groats, however. But I don't know where this money comes from; my master Caedmon suggested that it's only silly groats, stamped with King Alhfrith's gnarled profile - and fundamentally worthless. But there seems to be enough of this worthless stuff around to enable the Kingdom to assist the Realm of Ireland in its hour of need. We're regularly told that we're peering over the abyss, but it seems to my feline mind that we're leaping into it in an attempt to try and catch those who leaped over the edge ahead of us...

Apart from that, we have an administration that's beset by corruption and internal fighting, that starts wars in foreign parts and still pays homage to King Jose Borracho - the power-intoxicated Emperor and Senior Flyswatter of the Holy Roman Empire (which is neither holy, Roman nor an empire) and his faithful slave Hermit. It's widely rumoured that all new laws passed by the Witangemot are simply the same ones dictated and directed from the Sinister Empire over the other side of the Channel.

Happy Birthday, Caedmeron and Clegge. You're doing a great job. When I work out the essential difference between you and your predecessors, I'll celebrate by eating Edweird The Milliner's socks. I'm wanting to live dangerously...

Monday, 9 May 2011

Falling Down and Falling Out

I have to admit it: cats make mistakes. For example, Scead - a fellow feline of my acquaintance - misjudged the distance between two tree branches and consequently fell to the ground. I frequently remind him of this - much to his irritation. I'm obliged to confess that I also made a mistake - although my error was not one of physical judgement, but rather of logic. In my last posting, I applied the premise that everything that the soothsayers utter is either gross exaggeration or sheer mendacity. Using this logical principle, I rashly assumed that the Liberationists had done exceedingly well in the recent elections - especially since they'd heralded their voting results as a momentous success. In view of this mistaken assumption I visited Clegge's house and left him a congratulatory token as an ingredient for his chorizos.

Since then, I've come to understand that they actually did take a hammering at the elections, so the soothsayers (for once) were correct. Serves me right for assuming that the Liberationists' assertions were factual. I'm going to have to revise my logical model, and come up with something more reliable. When soothsayers can't be trusted to lie continually, it makes life very difficult for me...

So. Blaeck Clegge - the Head Mangold-Wurzel of the Liberationists Faction and Second-In-Command of the Unholy Alliance - has been severely humiliated by the electorate in the local Witangemot council elections. The People Have Spoken: in their own bovine way, they've sent an uncoded message to the Liberationists that they don't rate their performance in the Northumbrian political arena very highly.

I wanted to find out why they had been so ignominiously defeated, so I asked Caedmon if he could give me some perspective. He shrugged, and suggested that perhaps it was because they were too enchanted by the allures of the Holy Roman Empire (which is neither holy, Roman nor an empire). Although I'm aware that the Liberationists are rabidly in favour of bringing the Kingdom to sink and drown in those corrupt, sewage-saturated waters, I'm not sure that their starry-eyed and groat-infused enthusiasm is the sole reason for their demise.

So I contacted Láréow - my eyes and ears in Caedmeron's lair - and asked him. I'm very impressed with his political insight: his new role as Chief Rat-befriender in Caedmeron's residence has done him a power of good. He told me that the Liberationists were an unprincipled bunch of chancers who didn't have a scruple between them. He said that Caedmeron has secretly admitted that nobody really knows what the Liberationists actually stand for - but for reasons best understood by psychiatric research, many people voted for them because they've always been there. Despite this, there must have been a lot of people who - having previously supported them because they wanted something different - had now voted against them. I asked Láréow why he thought this had happened.

He told me that they were a party who are very skilled at facing three different ways - depending on who their audience is. This makes them untrustworthy in the eyes of the electorate. He also told me that Clegge had made a specific promise to the comforter-sucking schoolchildren that he wouldn't raise the cost of their kindergarten fees. Ever.

They then wholeheartedly supported the Trees when they proposed an increase in kindergarten fees. They reneged on a solemn promise to The People. And now, Clegge has pledged to oppose the Trees in their deranged endeavours to reform the Northumbrian Herbalist Service. It sounds as if he - and his Liberationist colleagues - only have one principle - and that is to abandon it at all costs.