steepholm: (Default)
I'm sure this point has been made elsewhere, but since everyone from Eric Pickles to the Daily Mail (and even some Labour supporters) have taken to describing the pledge to abolish university tuition fees for English students as a "bribe", I'd just like to point out that, if you want to look at it that way, corporation tax cuts are a bribe, as are the triple lock on pensions, with free TV licences, bus passes, winter fuel payments, free prescriptions, etc etc. And the NHS, of course. Why get all hoity toity about it only when the young are beneficiaries? It smacks doubly of hypocrisy when most of the people flinging this word about were the beneficiaries of free university education themselves. (I've yet to hear of any of them offering to pay the money back.)

"Bribe" is the wrong word to use in all these cases. Free education is a recognition that we all benefit from having an educated population; the NHS is a recognition that we all benefit from having a healthy population; those who advocate tax breaks do so (in most cases) because they think it will benefit the economy generally. This isn't bribery, just enlightened self-interest.

You might even think of it as paying forward some of the benefits (bribes, if you will) that you received. Or do you think your parents were profligate fools when they bribed you for your love with food, shelter, money, toys? I've no patience with that view of the world, especially when it's so selectively applied.

Tangentially (as I noted on FB the other day), Greg Mulholland's father was on Any Answers on Saturday, arguing that students should be registered to vote in their parents' constituencies rather than the university towns where they live. That way, they won't be able to gang up on poor Tory and Lib Dem candidates like Sir Julian Brazier and, er, Greg Mulholland. Hilariously, he began by saying how much he welcomed the fact that the young had decided to vote this time. He just wants to make sure that their vote won't count.
steepholm: (Default)
I mentioned on Facebook the other week that one of my pet marking peeves this year (they operate on a strict rotation basis) is the habit of saying "it could be argued that X", rather than simply "X". It always strikes me as evasive, a way of saying "I'm going to float an idea, and if you agree with it I'll take the credit, but if you don't then I wasn't advocating it, okay?"

Thanks to [profile] stormdog I just saw the perfect illustration of this tactic, although not using that exact phrase, from Nigel Farage - who I bet scattered "It could be argued that" all over his school essays. It's in this article about the reaction to the London bombings on Fox News. Were internment camps a good way to go, mused the incisive analysts of Fox? (For the benefit of those reading outside the UK, no mainstream British politician - by which for this purpose I mean a politician from a party with more MPs than zero - has suggested it.)

Who better to ask than Nigel Farage? Like one of my bet-hedging students (Farage was a professional bet-hedger when he worked in the City, trading commodities, and the instinct is still strong) Farage doesn't call for internment. He says (of people on police watch lists) "if there is not action, then the calls for internment will grow" and, "unless we see the government getting tough, you will see public calls for those 3,000 to be arrested".

Did he just call for internment? Of course not - how dare you suggest such a thing! He was merely acting as a commentator! (Unless it happens, and then he'll be able to say he was brave enough to float the idea.)

And then of course, along comes Katie Hopkins of the Daily Heil like the organ-grinder's monkey, repeating his sentiment but minus the hedge, proving Farage's words true in the process: “We do need internment camps.” What a double act!

A few people on Facebook were bemused by my dislike of "It could be argued that", implying that it was perhaps a bit over the top. This is why I try to drum into people that it's a cowardly and dishonest tactic, whether you're talking about the date of a sonnet or the best reaction to an atrocity.

Nigel Farage uses it, for heaven's sake!
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While breakfasting with friends at Betty's in York a fortnight ago, I mentioned that I was wary of predicting the result of the French presidential election (which was happening that day), since I was worried that Trump's win had been precipitated by my privately expecting it to happen.

Clémentine Beauvais remarked that it was rather splendid to say something so equally composed of narcissism and paranoia, and I have to admit she had a point. But isn't that a familiar combination in our times? Anyway, taking that hint (and another from "Porphyria's Lover") this poem came to me as I was wandering back from town this afternoon, a bag of marked essays at my back.


And so, Mark Zuckerberg, we are alone.

My last four Facebook posts have gained
No likes at all – although, in point of wit,
And weight, and power to shock, they should
Have gone as viral as the Spanish flu.

How could this be, I mused? Am I perhaps
Too dangerous now? My insights honed too sharp?
Have the Illuminati moved to hide
Me from all timelines, fearing my quick tongue?

At last I understand. Mark, it was you.
You made this private room on Sugar Mountain
Just for two; built Facebook walls around us.
Speak! I am waiting! What would’st thou ask of me?
steepholm: (Default)
I don't believe in posting just because a) you haven't for a few days and/or b) something important has happened that you feel you "ought" to comment on. Nevertheless, that's what I'm doing - partly as a data point so that I can remind my future self what I was thinking now.

So, I think this is obvious and dull, but here goes. The most striking thing about Theresa May's announcement of the election the other day wasn't the fact that it was a U-turn on all her previous promises not to hold one; nor that she rather ridiculously talked about "strong, stable government", stealing a line from David Cameron, Britain's most chaotic Prime Minister ever; nor was it even... Oh, but I think this could turn into a very long list, so I'll refer you to point-by-point analysis and cut to the chase.

The most striking thing was the way in which May evidently regards any effective Parliamentary oversight of the Government's actions as an unjustified infringement on the prerogatives of the executive. Far from opposing her at every turn, Parliament has in fact been extraordinarily accommodating, letting her Brexit bill pass with a three-line Opposition whip in support, and no amendments from the Lords. How much easier could they have made it? For May, however, even having to go to Parliament was an indignity, and she wasted a lot of taxpayer's money trying to avoid it.

I can't help wondering whether Erdogan's victory in Turkey wasn't more of a spur than the invigorating air of Snowdonia in inspiring her to go to the polls, asking for a majority that would effectively free her from democratic scrutiny. Okay, it's not quite being made President-for-life (even Trump has fought shy of that so far), but like Erdogan and Trump, May has that dangerous combination of entitlement and paranoia that makes any criticism, or even any constitutional check or balance, appear illegitimate, whether that be a federal judge daring to do his job in Hawaii, or a Parliamentary opposition doing its job in Westminster.

She's a very stiff-necked person, I think, when what we need right now is an Olympic gymnast. (I'm not saying Corbyn's that, but he can at least manage a forward roll.)

Back in the bubble, why does the Guardian think "Brenda from Bristol" requires subtitles when none of the other people in this clip do?
steepholm: (tree_face)
It's odd, isn't it? Every time LJ does something stupid (and it does), people talk about how it's the end of the platform, and they're high-tailing it off to Dreamwidth, or wherever. Sometimes they go, sometimes they stay.

By contrast, since I've been on Facebook it's been clusterfuck after clusterfuck. The arrangement of newsfeeds, privacy settings, how adverts are placed, what names people are allowed to use, all these things are regularly interfered with without warning or apparent justification, other than the whim of Zuckerberg. Imagine if LJ decided that pictures of breastfeeding mothers weren't allowed! There'd be more flouncing than in a Victorian haberdasher's. Yet FB gets away with all this and more (as well as being a vastly inferior platform in terms of threading, linking, etc.), without - well, I wouldn't say without a grumble, but certainly without a mass exodus to MySpace. Strange, n'est-ce pas?
steepholm: (tree_face)
I've been otherwise occupied over the last few days, but I couldn't help but notice, in the middle distance, quite a bit of fallout from the last Thursday's by-elections. In one, Labour conceded Copeland to the Tories - a poor result indeed, but, especially Corbyn's hostility to nuclear power, not particularly unexpected or out of line with historic trends: the Labour majority had been eroded steadily over the last 20 years, to the point where it was only some 2,000 in 2015. (The Tory vote was greatly boosted, too, by the collapse of UKIP.)

In the early stages of the campaign, far more attention was paid the other election, in Stoke. For here, it seemed, was the perfect storm which would set up UKIP to replace Labour in its heartlands. Here was a city that had voted strongly for Brexit, a left-behind old-industrial city that might reasonably resent the London-centric elite personified in its public-school-educated MP Tristram Hunt, a place where UKIP was moreover fielding its highest-profile parliamentary candidate, party leader Paul Nuttall. Early reports from the constituency were full of vox pops of people talking about switching from Labour to UKIP. You could hear the press licking its lips.

Then it all went a bit quiet. It became clear that UKIP weren't actually doing that well after all. In the event, Labour held the seat comfortably, and UKIP were humiliated - effectively destroyed, indeed, as a political force. If they couldn't win here, in these circumstances, then they can't win anywhere. Yet this story, of the destruction of a party on which the media have lavished so much attention and air time, was told in a strangely muted way, and in press reports was hugely overshadowed by the other election, where Labour lost.

Or so it seems to me, in the middle distance.
steepholm: (Default)
I've been otherwise occupied over the last few days, but I couldn't help but notice, in the middle distance, quite a bit of fallout from the last Thursday's by-elections. In one, Labour conceded Copeland to the Tories - a poor result indeed, but, especially Corbyn's hostility to nuclear power, not particularly unexpected or out of line with historic trends: the Labour majority had been eroded steadily over the last 20 years, to the point where it was only some 2,000 in 2015. (The Tory vote was greatly boosted, too, by the collapse of UKIP.)

In the early stages of the campaign, far more attention was paid the other election, in Stoke. For here, it seemed, was the perfect storm which would set up UKIP to replace Labour in its heartlands. Here was a city that had voted strongly for Brexit, a left-behind old-industrial city that might reasonably resent the London-centric elite personified in its public-school-educated MP Tristram Hunt, a place where UKIP was moreover fielding its highest-profile parliamentary candidate, party leader Paul Nuttall. Early reports from the constituency were full of vox pops of people talking about switching from Labour to UKIP. You could hear the press licking its lips.

Then it all went a bit quiet. It became clear that UKIP weren't actually doing that well after all. In the event, Labour held the seat comfortably, and UKIP were humiliated - effectively destroyed, indeed, as a political force. If they couldn't win here, in these circumstances, then they can't win anywhere. Yet this story, of the destruction of a party on which the media have lavished so much attention and air time, was told in a strangely muted way, and in press reports was hugely overshadowed by the other election, where Labour lost.

Or so it seems to me, in the middle distance.
steepholm: (tree_face)
Though justice against fate complain,
And plead the ancient rights in vain;
But those do hold or break
As men are strong or weak.

There was a catch in my voice as I read these lines to a hall of first-year students yesterday, in the course of a lecture comparing Marvell's "Horatian Ode" with Horace's Ode 1.2 (in translation, naturally). I'd been asked to give a couple of lectures on rewritings, and this was the first: next week, The Owl Service and "Math ap Mathonwy"!

If there's one thing you take away from this lecture, I said, or words to that effect, remember those words and take them to heart. Rights aren't out there sitting immutably in some Platonic realm: they're human creations, and have to be protected by humans. (Pace the Declaration of Independence, there's nothing self-evident or innate about them.)

A little off-topic, perhaps, but it was hard to avoid the contemporary resonances of both poems at a time when Europe and America appear to be in the process of being "cast... into another mould". Not that either Trump or Farage (or any of the various continental Faragistes) has a scintilla of the genius of Octavian or Cromwell, but I fear that in today's world they don't need it.

On a side note, though, I noticed for the first time that this poem does the same thing that Trump does in his speeches, shifting register and providing self-translation or additional comment as if for his deaf granny. The long couplets tend to use an elevated register, full of abstracts, personifications and Latinate words, which is supplemented by a demotic, everyday, occasionally cynical register in the short couplets. You can see it clearly in the lines quote above, but they're not unique. Take, for example:

’Tis madness to resist or blame
The force of angry Heaven’s flame;
And, if we would speak true,
Much to the man is due,

The first two lines are elevated, the second a kind of water-cooler village pump conversation, mulling over the recent news. Or, immediately following:

Who from his private gardens where
He liv’d reserved and austere,
As if his highest plot
To plant the bergamot,

The first two lines are serious, the second two parenthetical whimsy. In a more muted form we find the same contrast here:

He nothing common did or mean
Upon that memorable scene,
But with his keener eye
The axe’s edge did try;

Nor call’d the gods with vulgar spite
To vindicate his helpless right,
But bowed his comely head
Down as upon a bed.

Elevated language in the long lines, with the short lines devoted to a) a piece of witty black humour, or b) a homely simile, in both cases free of non-English words. Well, that's by the by, but I record it here as an aide-memoire.
steepholm: (Default)
Though justice against fate complain,
And plead the ancient rights in vain;
But those do hold or break
As men are strong or weak.

There was a catch in my voice as I read these lines to a hall of first-year students yesterday, in the course of a lecture comparing Marvell's "Horatian Ode" with Horace's Ode 1.2 (in translation, naturally). I'd been asked to give a couple of lectures on rewritings, and this was the first: next week, The Owl Service and "Math ap Mathonwy"!

If there's one thing you take away from this lecture, I said, or words to that effect, remember those words and take them to heart. Rights aren't out there sitting immutably in some Platonic realm: they're human creations, and have to be protected by humans. (Pace the Declaration of Independence, there's nothing self-evident or innate about them.)

A little off-topic, perhaps, but it was hard to avoid the contemporary resonances of both poems at a time when Europe and America appear to be in the process of being "cast... into another mould". Not that either Trump or Farage (or any of the various continental Faragistes) has a scintilla of the genius of Octavian or Cromwell, but I fear that in today's world they don't need it.

On a side note, though, I noticed for the first time that this poem does the same thing that Trump does in his speeches, shifting register and providing self-translation or additional comment as if for his deaf granny. The long couplets tend to use an elevated register, full of abstracts, personifications and Latinate words, which is supplemented by a demotic, everyday, occasionally cynical register in the short couplets. You can see it clearly in the lines quote above, but they're not unique. Take, for example:

’Tis madness to resist or blame
The force of angry Heaven’s flame;
And, if we would speak true,
Much to the man is due,

The first two lines are elevated, the second a kind of water-cooler village pump conversation, mulling over the recent news. Or, immediately following:

Who from his private gardens where
He liv’d reserved and austere,
As if his highest plot
To plant the bergamot,

The first two lines are serious, the second two parenthetical whimsy. In a more muted form we find the same contrast here:

He nothing common did or mean
Upon that memorable scene,
But with his keener eye
The axe’s edge did try;

Nor call’d the gods with vulgar spite
To vindicate his helpless right,
But bowed his comely head
Down as upon a bed.

Elevated language in the long lines, with the short lines devoted to a) a piece of witty black humour, or b) a homely simile, in both cases free of non-English words. Well, that's by the by, but I record it here as an aide-memoire.
steepholm: (tree_face)
It's a common meme amongst people who hate Jeremy Corbyn that his supporters are all cult-like devotees who are obsessed with their hero; but in recent months the only people who seem obsessed with Corbyn are his critics, who can't seem to shut up about him. To judge by the Facebook pages of some of my friends (friends only in a Facebook sense, in some cases), all the woes of recent times have been Corbyn's doing. You'd think that he had called the referendum; you'd certainly think that he had campaigned for a Leave vote; you'd think that he had insisted on leaving the single market - and now, apparently, the real significance of the Government's curtailing of the Dubs amendment lies in Corbyn's failure to stop it (in some unspecified way). For a leader of the opposition whose MPs have been in open revolt from before the moment of his election, he apparently wields an amazing amount of power.

Of course, if push came to shove my friends would admit that all these acts were actually perpetrated by the Tories, but it seems that they couldn't have done it (despite having a parliamentary majority) had Jeremy Corbyn not allowed them. That enrages them far more than the acts themselves. At any rate, they never post against the government but only against the opposition.

It seems to me that this constant blaming of the opposition for the acts of the government is the very essence of letting said government off the hook - the very thing, in fact, that they blame Corbyn for. It's bizarre; but it's been the pattern at least since last June, when the Labour rebels chose the moment of greatest Tory disarray - the aftermath of the Brexit vote - in order the launch their bid to replace Corbyn as leader. What a friend the Tories have in the PLP - and in their cheerleaders on Facebook and elsewhere (The Guardian, I'm looking at you).

A curious coda: in the tradition of Schroedinger's Immigrant, who simultaneously steals your job and lazes on benefits, we have recently begun to witness attacks on Schroedinger's Opposition Leader - who is both the great betrayer of the Remain voters (for voting in line with the referendum result), and the darling of the liberal metropolitan elite, hopelessly out of touch with Labour's working-class heartlands. But clearly any stick will do, as long as it draws attention from the evisceration of the NHS, the betrayal of refugees, the uselessness of Trident, the shambles of the Brexit ministers, and such like minor matters.
steepholm: (Default)
It's a common meme amongst people who hate Jeremy Corbyn that his supporters are all cult-like devotees who are obsessed with their hero; but in recent months the only people who seem obsessed with Corbyn are his critics, who can't seem to shut up about him. To judge by the Facebook pages of some of my friends (friends only in a Facebook sense, in some cases), all the woes of recent times have been Corbyn's doing. You'd think that he had called the referendum; you'd certainly think that he had campaigned for a Leave vote; you'd think that he had insisted on leaving the single market - and now, apparently, the real significance of the Government's curtailing of the Dubs amendment lies in Corbyn's failure to stop it (in some unspecified way). For a leader of the opposition whose MPs have been in open revolt from before the moment of his election, he apparently wields an amazing amount of power.

Of course, if push came to shove my friends would admit that all these acts were actually perpetrated by the Tories, but it seems that they couldn't have done it (despite having a parliamentary majority) had Jeremy Corbyn not allowed them. That enrages them far more than the acts themselves. At any rate, they never post against the government but only against the opposition.

It seems to me that this constant blaming of the opposition for the acts of the government is the very essence of letting said government off the hook - the very thing, in fact, that they blame Corbyn for. It's bizarre; but it's been the pattern at least since last June, when the Labour rebels chose the moment of greatest Tory disarray - the aftermath of the Brexit vote - in order the launch their bid to replace Corbyn as leader. What a friend the Tories have in the PLP - and in their cheerleaders on Facebook and elsewhere (The Guardian, I'm looking at you).

A curious coda: in the tradition of Schroedinger's Immigrant, who simultaneously steals your job while lazing on benefits, we now have recently begun to witness attacks on Schroedinger's Opposition Leader - who is both the great betrayer of the Remain voters (for voting in line with the referendum result), and the darling of the liberal metropolitan elite, hopelessly out of touch with Labour's working-class heartlands. But clearly any stick will do, as long as it draws attention from the evisceration of the NHS, the betrayal of refugees, the uselessness of Trident, the shambles of the Brexit ministers, and such like minor matters.
steepholm: (tree_face)
Anyone doubting whether Trump's instincts were fascistic will I hope have had those doubts satisfied by his first week in office. Terrible as the events at the airports have been, in Pollyanna mode I'm hoping that they will have given serious second thoughts to people thinking of voting for Le Pen in France. This (and worse) is what you'd be voting for: don't say there's no way you could have known.

If Le Pen is defeated - better, humiliated - it may stop the populist right in its tracks in mainland Europe. If not - well, après elle, le déluge.
steepholm: (Default)
Anyone doubting whether Trump's instincts were fascistic will I hope have had their doubts satisfied by his first week in office. Terrible as the events at the airports have been, in Pollyanna mode I'm hoping that they will have given serious second thoughts to people thinking of voting for Le Pen in France. This (and worse) is what you'd be voting for: don't say there's no way you could have known.

If Le Pen is defeated - better, humiliated - it may stop the populist right in its tracks in mainland Europe. If not - well, après elle, le déluge.
steepholm: (tree_face)
The old mobile phone advertising slogan, "The Future's Bright, the Future's Orange" has been going through my head for the last day or so - can't think why...

Anyway, idly searching the phrase on Youtube I came across this 1999 advert, imagining a dystopian future world in which Orange has become a vast, all-controlling panopticon, micromanaging the lives of everyone and interposing itself in human relationships at every level.

Although at one point (0.51) we read that Hillary Clinton is running for the US presidency, the news is greeted with scornful, uncomprehending laughter by the complacent white family at the film's centre, who are unaware of how their autonomy has been usurped by the all-powerful Orange Corporation.

It's nightmarish stuff - complete with creepy clowns (4.05). Watch it (and then live it) if you dare...

steepholm: (Default)
The old mobile phone advertising slogan, "The Future's Bright, the Future's Orange" has been going through my head for the last day or so - can't think why...

Anyway, idly searching the phrase on Youtube I came across this 1999 advert, imagining a dystopian future world in which Orange has become a vast, all-controlling panopticon, micromanaging the lives of everyone and interposing itself in human relationships at every level.

Although at one point (0.51) we read that Hillary Clinton is running for the US presidency, the news is greeted with scornful, uncomprehending laughter by the complacent white family at the film's centre, who are unaware of how their autonomy has been usurped by the all-powerful Orange Corporation.

It's nightmarish stuff - complete with creepy clowns (4.05). Watch it (and then live it) if you dare...

steepholm: (tree_face)
I'm rather stupid. It only just occurred to me that for many of my friends here the move of LJ's servers to Russia is also the move of LJ's servers out of their own country. The latter aspect could be quite as unsettling as the former, I imagine. Whereas for those of use who have always written our home thoughts from abroad it is, from that point of view, business as usual.

Of course I don't trust Putin's government, but nor do I Trump's. In terms of LGBTQI issues, for example, I'm not keen on either trawling my locked posts (no nor Mark Zuckerberg neither, though by your smiling you seem to say so). Although, to be honest, they'd probably be bored to death if they did.
steepholm: (tree_face)
That was a bit strange. I just watched the 8 Out of 10 Cats Christmas special, which I'd recorded on the 21st. To my surprise, one of the panellists was Carrie Fisher - talking about her plans for Christmas, among other things...

The most unfortunate line was from Aisling Bea: in answer to the question, "Which is more exciting, waking up on Christmas morning or going to the new Star Wars film?", she remarked, "What's the alternative to waking up on Christmas morning?"

I don't see this episode getting a repeat any time soon.
steepholm: (Default)
That was a bit strange. I just watched the 8 Out of 10 Cats Christmas special, which I'd recorded on the 21st. To my surprise, one of the panellists was Carrie Fisher - talking about her plans for Christmas, among other things...

The most unfortunate line was from Aisling Bea: in answer to the question, "Which is more exciting, waking up on Christmas morning or going to the new Star Wars film?", she remarked, "What's the alternative to waking up on Christmas morning?"

I don't see this episode getting a repeat any time soon.
steepholm: (tree_face)
Christine Lagarde must be delighted that Donald Trump was elected President. Perhaps only in the era of moral topsy-turvydom for which he has now become the figurehead (having been elected partly on the platform that he is a braggart and a liar) could being convicted of a criminal offence be spun quite so brazenly as if it were an acquittal. From the BBC report, for example:

"There's a point in time when one has to just stop, turn the page and move on and continue to work with those who have put their trust in me."

The French government also confirmed its confidence in Ms Lagarde, who was reappointed to a five-year term at the IMF in February.

On Friday, she told the trial she had always acted in good faith and the suspicion she had lived under for the past five years had been an "ordeal".


Reading this out of context, I think anyone would assume that Lagarde had finally proved her innocence after a long trial, rather than being found guilty of criminal negligence in her duties as a Finance Minister. If that doesn't disqualify you for being head of the IMF, what does?

But of course there are other things to concern, distress and distract us. A terrorist attack in a Christmas market. The total balls-up that is the current British Government both at home and abroad. Trump's latest appointment of David Friedman as ambassador to Israel. And Aleppo - already fading from the news after, what? Two days?

Recently I've had an old Genesis song running through my head...

Let's skip the news boy (I'll go and make some tea)
Arabs and Jews boy (too much for me)
They get me confused boy (puts me off to sleep)
And the thing I hate, oh Lord!
Is staying up late, to watch some debate, on some nation's fate.


But of course, that's just how we're meant to react.
steepholm: (Default)
Christine Lagarde must be delighted that Donald Trump was elected President. Perhaps only in the era of moral topsy-turvydom for which he has now become the figurehead (having been elected partly on the platform that he is a braggart and a liar) could being convicted of a criminal offence be spun quite so brazenly as if it were an acquittal. From the BBC report, for example:

"There's a point in time when one has to just stop, turn the page and move on and continue to work with those who have put their trust in me."

The French government also confirmed its confidence in Ms Lagarde, who was reappointed to a five-year term at the IMF in February.

On Friday, she told the trial she had always acted in good faith and the suspicion she had lived under for the past five years had been an "ordeal".


Reading this out of context, I think anyone would assume that Lagarde had finally proved her innocence after a long trial, rather than being found guilty of criminal negligence in her duties as a Finance Minister. If that doesn't disqualify you for being head of the IMF, what does?

But of course there are other things to concern, distress and distract us. A terrorist attack in a Christmas market. The total balls-up that is the current British Government both at home and abroad. Trump's latest appointment of David Friedman as ambassador to Israel. And Aleppo - already fading from the news after, what? Two days?

Recently I've had an old Genesis song running through my head...

Let's skip the news boy (I'll go and make some tea)
Arabs and Jews boy (too much for me)
They get me confused boy (puts me off to sleep)
And the thing I hate, oh Lord!
Is staying up late, to watch some debate, on some nation's fate.


But of course, that's just how we're meant to react.

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