BY JIM WEBSTER I’ve worked with sheep, but I’d never call myself a shepherd. I’ve not got that level of expertise. But one of the things about shepherds is that they tend not to be centre stage. Historically they were always looked down on. Even more than the rest of us involved in agriculture, they were shunned. (Even now ‘peasant’ is an insult in the … Continue reading Unfashionable Shepherds
THE CITY GRUMP General reaction to the last minute Brexit deal has been along the lines of “Bless my soul. They all said Boris would fail but, lo and behold, he has pulled it off”. No more ECJ rulings, no more customs union and free trade here we come. Unfurl the Union Jack, we have taken back control. Not so fast. By now, courtesy of … Continue reading Smoke & Mirrors Mask the Brexit Deal
BY EFFIE DEANS Britain has left the EU with a deal. We will continue to trade freely with the EU. There will be no tariffs or quotas. But we will not have to follow EU laws or regulations. We will not be part of the Single Market and we will not be part of the Customs Union. We will be able to trade freely with … Continue reading Rejoining the EU Now Impossible
BY GARY MCGHEE When I was a child my mum bought me some marionettes for Xmas. One was a frog and the other a caterpillar. I loved them at first and played with them a lot and did not favour one above the other, but I soon got bored with them because all they could do was jump up and down on strings when I … Continue reading The Puppets
BY EFFIE DEANS The problem with Scottish Conservatism is structural rather than personal. Ruth Davidson is better suited to leadership than either Douglas Ross or Jackson Carlaw. But this is because she is a first rate politician. It is not because her ideas are any different from theirs. They all more or less agree about everything and the everything they agree upon is mistaken. That … Continue reading End Conservative Declinism
BY JIM WEBSTER As you can imagine, a slaughterhouse will get an awful lot of paperwork, and a lot of it has to be properly disposed of because it’s government documents. So a manager I know installed a shredding machine to dispose of it securely. Last time I talked to him he saved this paper for bedding up the pen in the lairage that they … Continue reading Farming & Politics Don’t Mix
BY DOUGLAS BULLOCH Hailed by Jean-Claude Juncker as “a message to the world about the future of open and fair trade” and sometimes dubbed the “cheese for cars” deal, the EU Japan Economic Partnership Agreement was heralded in 2019 as an enormously significant evolution for the future of world trade then descending into confrontation between the US and China. Why then, a mere eighteen months … Continue reading Why are Remainers so Hostile to the UK Japan FTA?
BY DANIEL KAWCZYNSKI MP Britain has always been a nation that punched above its weight in global affairs. Whilst we may no longer possess a world-spanning Empire, the UK is still home to institutions which make a difference around the world. The BBC World Service offers comfort and information to citizens of oppressive governments. Our Armed Forces support friendly nations and deter would-be aggressors. And … Continue reading UK Armed Forces & Aid
BY JAMES BEMBRIDGE After two years of polluting the political ether with conspiracy and conjecture, an illusionary truth formed in Britain’s liberal elite mirroring that of the Trump-Russian collusion conjured by their US counterparts. It is now received wisdom in much of Britain, and indeed Europe, that Britain’s freedom from the EU was won by unscrupulous means. Not that truth and accuracy is still expected … Continue reading Grimes
CSM EDITORIAL What a strange world we live in! Who would have thought that we’d be laid low by a flu-like virus in 2020? These are extraordinary times and – although some think there has been an overreaction – we need now to look out for each other to get through this tunnel and into the light. Those who wondered how the country might unite … Continue reading Unity at Last?
BY PAUL DAVIES Last weekend at our Welsh Conservative conference in Llangollen, I told some hard truths to the members of the Cardiff Bay Bubble. The Bubble is a fragile and delicate entity, and is fiercely protected by the elite within it – and by those who wish to be in it. Its devotees took to social media to pillory the Welsh Conservative heretic – … Continue reading Bursting the Cardiff Bay Bubble
BY EFFIE DEANS I was sleeping when we left the EU. It is a matter of complete indifference to me if a fifty pence coin turns up in my change marking the event. If something about being European trends on Twitter I feel slightly amused that some people might think that such things matter. Symbolism doesn’t matter. Reality matters. It’s already clear that nothing bad … Continue reading The Dwindling Sect of Rejoin
CSM EDITORIAL On Brexit Eve there are – predictably – some silly stories doing the rounds. The Daily Express asks the nation if it should be illegal to fly the EU flag from UK public buildings. Très petty. Meanwhile “Bung a Bob for a Big Ben Bong” is apparently a new low for British politics. Really? It’s about as relevant as Femi Oluwole. Who? Exactly. … Continue reading On Brexit Eve
Ingredients: 1 oz grenadine 3 oz lemonade 1 oz vodka 1 oz blue curacao ice Instructions: Add grenadine to a glass then fill with ice. In a shaker, shake lemonade and vodka then gently pour the mixture over the back of a spoon into the glass creating the white layer of the drink. Cascade blue curacao over the back of a spoon to make the … Continue reading The Brexit Cocktail
BY DOMINIC WIGHTMAN Sport teaches us the consequences of changing parameters. From racing – the softness of the turf. From fly-fishing – the entomology of larvae. From cricket – final innings, spinner-exploitable pitch cracks. In short, there are horses for courses, flies for certain rivers and months; on cloudy days some bowlers worth shining the conker for. Parameters are rarely if ever fixed entities. The … Continue reading Fatal Idée Fixe