A few months ago, when last we checked in on what the world had thrown us, things seemed bad. Alas, 2018 has conspired to screw us still more. For a dark and angry summary of the worst and most goddamn infuriating things that your humble correspondent has tried unsuccessfully to block out, please read on.
(This is, if you’ve not clocked yet, likely to be a large howl at the resurgence of fascism, pretty much everywhere that’s not Portugal, Canada or New Zealand – although I am sure someone can correct me on that… Don’t write in.)
Britain loses its mind several times
Some posh men threw some dead fish into the sea.
Yes, this was, really, a thing that happened. I mean, really. Effectively this was flytipping.
Unfortunately these men have, for some hard to fathom reason possibly related to a collective psychotic event, become quite important to politics in the United Kingdom.
As it is, watching Nigel bloody Farage – friend of fascists and famous singer of Nazi school songs, make an odious show of understanding issues he evidently cares little about.
There was a mildly funny moment where the Thames River police took issue with the awful parade though, so there was that, at least.
Just a shame it basically symbolised the mess that is being made of civil discourse and civil society in the UK.
Macerata: A horror absolutely-definitely-certainly not to do with far right politicians
In a total coincidence, a fascist shot at six African immigrants in northern Italy just as a badly tempered election campaign was whipping up divisive anti-immigrant fervour.
Matteo Salvini still may or may not be involved in the next Italian government, but the vagaries of a complicated electoral system have led him all too close to power, and it seems violent and offensive rhetoric has helped. This is a man who compared a prominent female politician to a sex doll on national television.
For god’s sake.
Jean-Claude Juncker has never been the most tone-aware of political figures. Why he thought sending Vladimir Putin an effusive congratulations for winning the undoubtedly fair Russian elections last month is unknown.
It’d have made minimal sense even if Russia weren’t in the middle of an international diplomatic row over potentially trying to murder a couple of people on British soil.
As it was, it was a bizarre intervention that served as one of the more ridiculous diplomatic statements made towards Russia in the last month.
(Everything Boris Johnson has ever said is excepted from that particular competition on the grounds of fairness.)
Under the gun
It has been clear for a while that the lead singer of the US band Eagles of Death Metal is a pig-headed idiot. It’s not the worst consequence of the Bataclan shooting a couple of years ago, but it’s certainly annoying that being caught in a tragedy has given this prat the impression of having some form of legitimacy to opine witlessly about gun crime and gun ownership in the States.
The bastard was one of many having a go at a teenager who survived a school shooting by hiding in a cupboard.
I know he’s apologised. If that’s not alarming I don’t know what is.
Rhinos and doomsday
The last male northern white rhino on Earth died. At his death, he was under close-quarters protection by a dozen heavily armed guards. If that’s not utterly miserable, damning and downright disgusting, then I don’t know what is.
A cheap laugh
Your humble correspondent enjoyed a remarkable coincidence during March. After the killing of the excellent investigative journalist Jan Kuciak – another emblematic and miserable event, but do you really want more of that in this piece? – his work and the stench of corruption led Slovak leader Robert Fico to offer his resignation.
A few weeks later across a couple of land borders and after the Italian election, a new speaker for the Italian Parliament’s lower house was named: A certain Roberto Fico.
I kid you not.
Whilst I absolutely believe they aren’t the same person, I can’t help but wondering if you could get away with that in the lawless and barren wasteland that is 2018. Fair play to RobertO Fico for taking a bus though, that makes being a populist politician much better.
Cover Photo: Gage Skidmore CC by SA 2.0