Britain Is Good Quotes

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It's good to leave behind all that is comfortable and known every so often. It opens one's mind to the wide world.
Kristen Britain (Blackveil (Green Rider, #4))
What a joy walking is. All the cares of life, all the hopeless, inept fuckwits that God has strewn along the Bill Bryson Highway of Life suddenly seem far away and harmless, and the world becomes tranquil and welcoming and good.
Bill Bryson (The Road to Little Dribbling: Adventures of an American in Britain)
A hush of expectancy descended in the chamber as all waited to hear the request. What treasure could he want? Laren inventoried in her mind all the precious trappings of the castle she could think of -jewels, weapons, art-and she saw that the others must be doing the same. What did the Sacoridians possess that would be good enough for the Eletian prince? "My brother," Graelalea said, "requires many pounds of dark chocolate fudge and Dragon Droppings. We must visit the Master of Chocolate.
Kristen Britain
Some police forces would believe anything. Not the Metropolitan police, though. The Met was the hardest, most cynically pragmatic, most stubbornly down-to-earth police force in Britain. It would take a lot to faze a copper from the Met. It would take, for example, a huge, battered car that was nothing more nor less than a fireball, a blazing, roaring, twisted metal lemon from Hell, driven by a grinning lunatic in sunglasses, sitting amid the flames, trailing thick black smoke, coming straight at them through the lashing rain and wind at eighty miles an hour. That would do it every time.
Terry Pratchett (Good Omens: The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter, Witch)
Some say the Tudors transcend this history, bloody and demonic as it is: that they descend from Brutus through the line of Constantine, son of St Helena, who was a Briton. Arthur, High King of Britain, was Constantine's grandson. He married up to three women, all called Guinevere, and his tomb is at Glastonbury, but you must understand that he is not really dead, only waiting his time to come again. His blessed descendant, Prince Arthur of England, was born in the year 1486, eldest son of Henry, the first Tudor king. This Arthur married Katharine the princess of Aragon, died at fifteen and was buried in Worcester Cathedral. If he were alive now, he would be King of England. His younger brother Henry would likely be Archbishop of Canterbury, and would not (at least, we devoutly hope not) be in pursuit of a woman of whom the cardinal hears nothing good: a woman to whom, several years before the dukes walk in to despoil him, he will need to turn his attention; whose history, before ruin seizes him, he will need to comprehend. Beneath every history, another history.
Hilary Mantel (Wolf Hall (Thomas Cromwell, #1))
We have not noticed how fast the rest has risen. Most of the industrialized world--and a good part of the nonindustrialized world as well--has better cell phone service than the United States. Broadband is faster and cheaper across the industrial world, from Canada to France to Japan, and the United States now stands sixteenth in the world in broadband penetration per capita. Americans are constantly told by their politicians that the only thing we have to learn from other countries' health care systems is to be thankful for ours. Most Americans ignore the fact that a third of the country's public schools are totally dysfunctional (because their children go to the other two-thirds). The American litigation system is now routinely referred to as a huge cost to doing business, but no one dares propose any reform of it. Our mortgage deduction for housing costs a staggering $80 billion a year, and we are told it is crucial to support home ownership, except that Margaret Thatcher eliminated it in Britain, and yet that country has the same rate of home ownership as the United States. We rarely look around and notice other options and alternatives, convinced that "we're number one.
Fareed Zakaria (The Post-American World)
The pleasant fact is that the British are not much good at violent crime except in fiction, which is of course as it should be.
Bill Bryson (The Road to Little Dribbling: Adventures of an American in Britain)
Suddenly, in the space of a moment, I realized what it was that I loved about Britain - which is to say, all of it. Every last bit of it, good and bad - Marmite, village fetes, country lanes, people saying 'mustn't grumble' and 'I'm terribly sorry but', people apologizing to me when I conk them with a nameless elbow, milk in bottles, beans on toast, haymaking in June, stinging nettles, seaside piers, Ordnance Survey maps, crumpets, hot-water bottles as a necessity, drizzly Sundays - every bit of it. What a wondrous place this was - crazy as fuck, of course, but adorable to the tiniest degree. What other country, after all, could possibly have come up with place names like Tooting Bec and Farleigh Wallop, or a game like cricket that goes on for three days and never seems to start? Who else would think it not the least odd to make their judges wear little mops on their heads, compel the Speaker of the House of Commons to sit on something called the Woolsack, or take pride in a military hero whose dying wish was to be kissed by a fellow named Hardy? ('Please Hardy, full on the lips, with just a bit of tongue.') What other nation in the world could possibly have given us William Shakespeare, pork pies, Christopher Wren, Windsor Great Park, the Open University, Gardners' Question Time and the chocolate digestive biscuit? None, of course. How easily we lose sight of all this. What an enigma Britain will seem to historians when they look back on the second half of the twentieth century. Here is a country that fought and won a noble war, dismantled a mighty empire in a generally benign and enlightened way, created a far-seeing welfare state - in short, did nearly everything right - and then spent the rest of the century looking on itself as a chronic failure. The fact is that this is still the best place in the world for most things - to post a letter, go for a walk, watch television, buy a book, venture out for a drink, go to a museum, use the bank, get lost, seek help, or stand on a hillside and take in a view. All of this came to me in the space of a lingering moment. I've said it before and I'll say it again. I like it here. I like it more than I can tell you.
Bill Bryson (Notes from a Small Island)
Hugs can do great amounts of good - especially for children." -Diana
Kate Petrella (Royal Wisdom: The Most Daft, Cheeky, and Brilliant Quotes from Britain's Royal Family)
A wine cellar requires order, forethought and good taste,’ the old man used to say. ‘These are the virtues that made Britain great.
Ken Follett (Fall of Giants (The Century Trilogy, #1))
To hear the tales told at night-time hearths you would think we had made a whole new country in Britain, named it Camelot and peopled it with shining heroes, but the truth is that we simply ruled Dumnonia as best we could, we ruled it justly and we never called it Camelot. Camelot exists only in the poets' dreams, while in our Dumnonia, even in those good years, the harvests still failed, the plagues still ravaged us and wars were still fought.
Bernard Cornwell (Enemy of God (The Warlord Chronicles, #2))
But not all Gaza residents were committed to the war. A reporter asked one of the Arabs what he most wanted. He was a taxi driver, father of ten. All he wanted was 'to eat and to work.' What did he think of Nasser? 'Nasser is good, Israel is good, America is good, Britain is good, Canada is good, India is good, Anything is good.
Robert John Donovan (Six Days In June: Israel's Fight For Survival)
This week, Zuma was quoted as saying, 'When the British came to our country, they said everything we are doing was barbaric, was wrong, inferior in whatever way.' But the serious critique of Zuma is not about who is a barbarian and who is civilised. It is about good governance, and this is a universal value, as relevant to an African village as it is to Westminster. If you are unable to keep your appetites in check, you are inevitably going to live beyond your means. And this means you are going to become vulnerable to patronage and even corruption. That is why Jacob Zuma's 'polygamy' is his achilles heel.
Mark Gevisser
How does she do it? She makes it sound like she is so cut up to be giving them this information, and it's all just bumph out of her head. She never told them ANYTHING. I don't think she's given them the right name of any airfield in Britain except Mainsend and Buscot, which of course were where she was stationed. They could have easily checked. It's all so close to truth, and so glib--her aircraft identification is rather good considering what a fuss she makes about it. It makes me think of the first day I met her, giving those directions in German. So cool and crisp, such authority--suddenly she really was a radio operator, a German radio operator, she was so good at faking it. Or when I told her to be Jamie, how she just suddenly turned into Jamie. This confession of hers is rotten with error...
Elizabeth Wein (Code Name Verity)
I had long since realised that if there was greatness in Britain, then it lay in its everyday citizens, and not in its institutions.
Nikesh Shukla (The Good Immigrant)
they did not fight for a Britain where to hold by truths and values which have been thought good and worthy for a thousand years would be to run the risk of being called “fascist
George MacDonald Fraser (Quartered Safe Out Here: A Harrowing Tale of World War II)
This is from "Marabou Stork Nightmares". Bernard's Poem: Did you see her on the telly the other day good family entertainment the tabloids say But when you're backstage at your new faeces audition you hear the same old shite of your own selfish volition She was never a singer a comic or a dancer I cant say I was sad when I found out she had cancer Great Britain's earthy northern comedy queen takes the rand, understand from the racist Boer regime So now her cells are fucked and thats just tough titty I remember her act that I caught back in Sun City She went on and on about 'them from the trees with different skull shapes from the likes of you and me' Her Neo-Nazi spell it left me fucking numb the Boers lapped it up with zeal so did the British ex-pat scum But what goes round comes round they say so welcome to another dose of chemotherapy And for my part it's time to be upfront so fuck off and die you carcinogenic cunt.
Irvine Welsh (Marabou Stork Nightmares)
In the words of Mr Thierry Coup of Warner Bros: 'We are taking the most iconic and powerful moments of the stories and putting them in an immersive environment. It is taking the theme park experience to a new level.' And of course I wish Thierry and his colleagues every possible luck, and I am sure it will be wonderful. But I cannot conceal my feelings; and the more I think of those millions of beaming kids waving their wands and scampering the Styrofoam turrets of Hogwartse_STmk, and the more I think of those millions of poor put-upon parents who must now pay to fly to Orlando and pay to buy wizard hats and wizard cloaks and wizard burgers washed down with wizard meade_STmk, the more I grind my teeth in jealous irritation. Because the fact is that Harry Potter is not American. He is British. Where is Diagon Alley, where they buy wands and stuff? It is in London, and if you want to get into the Ministry of Magic you disappear down a London telephone box. The train for Hogwarts goes from King's Cross, not Grand Central Station, and what is Harry Potter all about? It is about the ritual and intrigue and dorm-feast excitement of a British boarding school of a kind that you just don't find in America. Hogwarts is a place where children occasionally get cross with each other—not 'mad'—and where the situation is usually saved by a good old British sense of HUMOUR. WITH A U. RIGHT? NOT HUMOR. GOTTIT?
Boris Johnson
Most American view World War II nostalgically as the "good war," in which the United States and its allies triumphed over German Nazism, Italian fascism, and Japanese militarism. The rest of the world remembers it as the bloodiest war in human history. By the time it was over, more than 60 million people lay dead, including 27 million Russians, between 10 million and 20 million Chinese, 6 million Jews, 5.5 million Germans, 3 million non-Jewish Poles, 2.5 million Japanese, and 1.5 million Yugoslavs. Austria, Great Britain, France, Italy, Hungary, Romania, and the United States each counted between 250,000 and 333,000 dead.
Oliver Stone (The Untold History of The United States)
They could take the money from building enough nukes to kill all the Russians in the world and give it to libraries. What good does an independent nuclear deterrent do Britain, compared to the good of libraries?
Jo Walton (Among Others)
But you won’t abdicate." Of course not. It’s my duty to go on, to maintain the line. I can’t possibly fail in that. It’s as if you and I were throwing a ball back and forth to establish a record, and had been doing so for a millennium. You cannot drop a ball that has remained airborne through good effort for most of a thousand years. You cannot stop an unlikely heart that has been beating for so long. I would rather die than betray continuity, for its own sake if for nothing else. And Britain needs a king, just as it needs motormen and cooks and a prime minister. Just as it needs soldiers who will die for it if they must. It’s my job, or it will be, but you should know that I’ve never wanted it. I was only born to it, as if with a deformity, to which I hope I can respond with grace." Fredericka had been running her finger over the carpet, tracing a pattern in the way children do when they have learnt something overwhelming and are moved, but cannot say so. Freddy expected her to look up, with tears, and that in this moment she might have begun the long and arduous process of becoming a queen. She was so beautiful. To embrace her now, with high emotion flowing from her physical majesty, was all he wanted in the world. Her finger stopped moving, and she turned her eyes to him. Freddy?" Yes?" he answered. What’s raw egg? I read a recipe in She that called for a cup of raw egg. What is that?" After a long silence, Freddy asked, "Which part of the formulation escapes you? Egg? Raw? The link between the two?" The two what?" Fredericka?" Yes, Freddy?" Would you like to go dancing?" Oh, yes Freddy!" Come then. We will.
Mark Helprin (Freddy and Fredericka)
Brutalist architecture was Modernism's angry underside, and was never, much as some would rather it were, a mere aesthetic style. It was a political aesthetic, an attitude, a weapon, dedicated to the precept that nothing was too good for ordinary people. Now, after decades of neglect, it's devided between 'eyesores' and 'icons'; fine for the Barbican's stockbrokers but unacceptable for the ordinary people who were always its intended clients.
Owen Hatherley (A Guide to the New Ruins of Great Britain)
I realised that I had set so many of my novels and stories abroad, because custom had prevented me from seeing how exotic my own country is. Britain really is an immense lunatic asylum. That is one of the things that distinguishes us among the nations... We are rigid and formal in some ways, but we believe in the right to eccentricity, as long as the eccentricities are large enough... Woe betide you if you hold your knife incorrectly, but good luck to you if you wear a loincloth and live up a tree.
Louis de Bernières
Jane, who is much better at reading guide books than I am (I always read them on the way back to see what I missed, it’s often quite a shock), discovered something wonderful in the book she was reading. Did I know, she asked, that Brisbane was originally founded as a penal colony for convicts who committed new offences after they had arrived in Australia ? I spent a good half hour enjoying this single piece of information. It was wonderful. There we British sat, poor grey sodden creatures, huddling under our grey northern sky that seeped like a rancid dish cloth, busy sending those we wished to punish most severely to sit in bright sunlight on the coast of the Tasman Sea at the southern tip of the Great Barrier Reef and maybe do some surfing too. No wonder the Australians have a particular kind of smile that they reserve exclusively for use on the British.
Douglas Adams (The Salmon of Doubt (Dirk Gently, #3))
St Patrick was a Roman Briton of good family dwelling probably in the Severn valley.
Winston S. Churchill (The Birth of Britain (A History of the English Speaking Peoples #1))
As late as 1912, Britain carried more than half the goods shipped across the seas of the
Thomas Sowell (Conquests And Cultures: An International History)
Fame requires every kind of excess. I mean true fame, a devouring neon, not the somber renown of waning statesmen or chinless kings. I mean long journeys across gray space. I mean danger, the edge of every void, the circumstance of one man imparting an erotic terror to the dreams of the republic. Understand the man who must inhabit these extreme regions, monstrous and vulval, damp with memories of violation. Even if half-mad he is absorbed into the public's total madness; even if fully rational, a bureaucrat in hell, a secret genius of survival, he is sure to be destroyed by the public's contempt for survivors. Fame, this special kind, feeds itself on outrage, on what the counselors of lesser men would consider bad publicity-hysteria in limousines, knife fights in the audience, bizarre litigation, treachery, pandemonium and drugs. Perhaps the only natural law attaching to true fame is that the famous man is compelled, eventually, to commit suicide. (Is it clear I was a hero of rock'n'roll?) Toward the end of the final tour it became apparent that our audience wanted more than music, more even than its own reduplicated noise. It's possible the culture had reached its limit, a point of severe tension. There was less sense of simple visceral abandon at our concerts during these last weeks. Few cases of arson and vandalism. Fewer still of rape. No smoke bombs or threats of worse explosives. Our followers, in their isolation, were not concerned with precedent now. They were free of old saints and martyrs, but fearfully so, left with their own unlabeled flesh. Those without tickets didn't storm the barricades, and during a performance the boys and girls directly below us, scratching at the stage, were less murderous in their love of me, as if realizing finally that my death, to be authentic, must be self-willed- a succesful piece of instruction only if it occured by my own hand, preferrably ina foreign city. I began to think their education would not be complete until they outdid me as a teacher, until one day they merely pantomimed the kind of massive response the group was used to getting. As we performed they would dance, collapse, clutch each other, wave their arms, all the while making absolutely no sound. We would stand in the incandescent pit of a huge stadium filled with wildly rippling bodies, all totally silent. Our recent music, deprived of people's screams, was next to meaningless, and there would have been no choice but to stop playing. A profound joke it would have been. A lesson in something or other. In Houston I left the group, saying nothing, and boarded a plane for New York City, that contaminated shrine, place of my birth. I knew Azarian would assume leadership of the band, his body being prettiest. As to the rest, I left them to their respective uproars- news media, promotion people, agents, accountants, various members of the managerial peerage. The public would come closer to understanding my disappearance than anyone else. It was not quite as total as the act they needed and nobody could be sure whether I was gone for good. For my closest followers, it foreshadowed a period of waiting. Either I'd return with a new language for them to speak or they'd seek a divine silence attendant to my own. I took a taxi past the cemetaries toward Manhattan, tides of ash-light breaking across the spires. new York seemed older than the cities of Europe, a sadistic gift of the sixteenth century, ever on the verge of plague. The cab driver was young, however, a freckled kid with a moderate orange Afro. I told him to take the tunnel. Is there a tunnel?" he said.
Don DeLillo
He was wondering why, in Britain, he could get just about every type of coffee possible, including some he felt were patently ridiculous, but finding a good cup of tea was becoming harder and harder.
Gavin G. Smith (The Age of Scorpio)
There’s no respect for older people at all today, and that’s saddening. Look at the way crime against older people has risen! You know, there’s no calling people ‘Mr’ or ‘Mrs’ now, they just call you, and it’s all ‘fuck off’ and the likes of.
Stephen Richards (Street Warrior: The True Story of the Legendary Malcolm Price, Britain's Hardest Man)
Many of his early engines were quite astounding. They were no faster or more powerful than other designs, and yet they were more expensive, less efficient, and much worst at starting. Despite this, he improved on them in such a way that they would frequently not start at all.
Stephen Pile (The Book of Heroic Failures: The Official Handbook of the Not Terribly Good Club of Great Britain)
Therefore, good-bye Columbus? Balzac once suggested that all great fortunes are founded on a crime. So too all great civilizations. The European conquest of the Americas, like the conquest of other civilizations, was indeed accompanied by great cruelty. But that is to say nothing more than that the European conquest of America was, in this way, much like the rise of Islam, the Norman conquest of Britain and the widespread American Indian tradition of raiding, depopulating and appropriating neighboring lands. The real question is, What eventually grew on this bloodied soil? The answer is, The great modern civilizations
Charles Krauthammer (Things That Matter: Three Decades of Passions, Pastimes, and Politics)
In Wales, they love with abandon. When a Welsh person loves you, you'll finally know your potential. They are different from the Americans, who are precarious with their love. They are different from the English, who are reserved even when you stand in front of them, naked, handing them your heart. The English give you their love in cups: here, you’ve been good. drink another glass. But the Welsh, they drown you in an ocean of love. You have their attention, their consideration. You have all of them. They aren’t even careful to keep any for themselves. It seems to me that only the Welsh know how to love, how to make someone feel loved. Because when a Welsh person loves you, you’ll finally know how it feels to belong to poetry.
Kamand Kojouri
When I venture to point out the unfairness of this, I am reminded of the second item on my list. Apparently the only acceptable destiny for a young female mem​b​er of the house of Windsor is to marry into another of the royal houses that still seem to litter Europe, even though there are precious few reigning monarchs these days. it seems that even a very minor Windsor like myself is a desirable commodity for those wishing a tenuous alliance with Britain at this unsettled time. I am constantly being reminded that is is my duty to make a good match with some half-lunatic, buck-toothed, chinless, spinele​s​s​​​, and utterly awful European royal, thus cementing ties with a potential enemy. My cousin Alex did this, poor thing. I have learned from her tragic example.
Rhys Bowen (Her Royal Spyness (Her Royal Spyness Mysteries, #1))
be that your cousin has influenced you in some way—but as for our Junior Surgeon,” he turned to Carausius, “I remember that when first he was posted here, you yourself, Caesar, were not too sure of his good faith. This is surely some plot of Maximian’s, to cast doubt and suspicion between the Emperor of Britain and the man who, however unworthily, serves him to the best of his ability as chief minister.” Justin stepped forward, his hands clenched at his sides. “That is a foul lie,” he said, for once without a trace of his stutter. “And you know it, Allectus; none better.” “Will you grant me also a space to speak?” Carausius said quietly, and silence fell like a blight on the lamplit chamber. He looked round at all three of them, taking his time. “I remember my doubts, Allectus. I remember also that the
Rosemary Sutcliff (The Silver Branch)
State schooling in Britain both today and when I was a child seems stuck in a Victorian-era paradigm, guided by notions of discipline, obedience and deference to ones betters, of becoming a good worker and getting a good job. The idea that we go to school to find our passions, our calling, to learn to be happy, to ‘draw out that which is within’, as the root meaning of the word ‘educate’ commands, is almost entirely absent.
Akala (Natives: Race and Class in the Ruins of Empire)
I HAD TO GO to America for a while to give some talks. Going to America always does me good. It’s where I’m from, after all. There’s baseball on the TV, people are friendly and upbeat, they don’t obsess about the weather except when there is weather worth obsessing about, you can have all the ice cubes you want. Above all, visiting America gives me perspective. Consider two small experiences I had upon arriving at a hotel in downtown Austin, Texas. When I checked in, the clerk needed to record my details, naturally enough, and asked for my home address. Our house doesn’t have a street number, just a name, and I have found in the past that that is more deviance than an American computer can sometimes cope with, so I gave our London address. The girl typed in the building number and street name, then said: “City?” I replied: “London.” “Can you spell that please?” I looked at her and saw that she wasn’t joking. “L-O-N-D-O-N,” I said. “Country?” “England.” “Can you spell that?” I spelled England. She typed for a moment and said: “The computer won’t accept England. Is that a real country?” I assured her it was. “Try Britain,” I suggested. I spelled that, too—twice (we got the wrong number of T’s the first time)—and the computer wouldn’t take that either. So I suggested Great Britain, United Kingdom, UK, and GB, but those were all rejected, too. I couldn’t think of anything else to suggest. “It’ll take France,” the girl said after a minute. “I beg your pardon?” “You can have ‘London, France.’ ” “Seriously?” She nodded. “Well, why not?” So she typed “London, France,” and the system was happy. I finished the check-in process and went with my bag and plastic room key to a bank of elevators a few paces away. When the elevator arrived, a young woman was in it already, which I thought a little strange because the elevator had come from one of the upper floors and now we were going back up there again. About five seconds into the ascent, she said to me in a suddenly alert tone: “Excuse me, was that the lobby back there?” “That big room with a check-in desk and revolving doors to the street? Why, yes, it was.” “Shoot,” she said and looked chagrined. Now I am not for a moment suggesting that these incidents typify Austin, Texas, or America generally or anything like that. But it did get me to thinking that our problems are more serious than I had supposed. When functioning adults can’t identify London, England, or a hotel lobby, I think it is time to be concerned. This is clearly a global problem and it’s spreading. I am not at all sure how we should tackle such a crisis, but on the basis of what we know so far, I would suggest, as a start, quarantining Texas.
Bill Bryson (The Road to Little Dribbling: More Notes from a Small Island)
The Atonist nobility knew it was impossible to organize and control a worldwide empire from Britain. The British Isles were geographically too far West for effective management. In order to be closer to the “markets,” the Atonist corporate executives coveted Rome. Additionally, by way of their armed Templar branch and incessant murderous “Crusades,” they succeeded making inroads further east. Their double-headed eagle of control reigned over Eastern and Western hemispheres. The seats of Druidic learning once existed in the majority of lands, and so the Atonist or Christian system spread out in similar fashion. Its agents were sent from Britain and Rome to many a region and for many a dark purpose. To this very day, the nobility of Europe and the east are controlled from London and Rome. Nothing has changed when it comes to the dominion of Aton. As Alan Butler and Stephen Dafoe have proven, the Culdean monks, of whom we write, had been hired for generations as tutors to elite families throughout Europe. In their book The Knights Templar Revealed, the authors highlight the role played by Culdean adepts tutoring the super-wealthy and influential Catholic dynasties of Burgundy, Champagne and Lorraine, France. Research into the Templars and their affiliated “Salt Line” dynasties reveals that the seven great Crusades were not instigated and participated in for the reasons mentioned in most official history books. As we show here, the Templars were the military wing of British and European Atonists. It was their job to conquer lands, slaughter rivals and rebuild the so-called “Temple of Solomon” or, more correctly, Akhenaton’s New World Order. After its creation, the story of Jesus was transplanted from Britain, where it was invented, to Galilee and Judea. This was done so Christianity would not appear to be conspicuously Druidic in complexion. To conceive Christianity in Britain was one thing; to birth it there was another. The Atonists knew their warped religion was based on ancient Amenism and Druidism. They knew their Jesus, Iesus or Yeshua, was based on Druidic Iesa or Iusa, and that a good many educated people throughout the world knew it also. Their difficulty concerned how to come up with a believable king of light sufficiently appealing to the world’s many pagan nations. Their employees, such as St. Paul (Josephus Piso), were allowed to plunder the archive of the pagans. They were instructed to draw from the canon of stellar gnosis and ancient solar theologies of Egypt, Chaldea and Ireland. The archetypal elements would, like ingredients, simply be tossed about and rearranged and, most importantly, the territory of the new godman would be resituated to suit the meta plan.
Michael Tsarion (The Irish Origins of Civilization, Volume One)
Film and TV V.I.P, seeker of the peace, part time chandelier cleaner, a legend in his own time, oppressor of champions, soldier of fortune, world traveller, bonvivant, all round good guy, international lover, casual hero, philosopher, wars fought, bears wrestled, equations solved, virgins enlightened, revolutions quelled, tigers castrated, orgies organised, bars quaffed dry, governments run, test rockets flown, life president of the Liquidarian Society of Great Britain and Ireland.
Billy Connolly (Billy Connolly Live)
The second thing that can be said with regard to life expectancy is that it is not a good idea to be an American. Compared with your peers in the rest of the industrialized world, even being well-off doesn’t help you here. A randomly selected American aged forty-five to fifty-four is more than twice as likely to die, from any cause, as someone from the same age-group in Sweden. Just consider that. If you are a middle-aged American, your risk of dying before your time is more than double that of a person picked at random off the streets of Uppsala or Stockholm or Linköping. It is much the same when other nationalities are brought in for comparison. For every 400 middle-aged Americans who die each year, just 220 die in Australia, 230 in Britain, 290 in Germany, and 300 in France. These health deficits begin at birth and go right on through life. Children in the United States are 70 percent more likely to die in childhood than children in the rest of the wealthy world. Among rich countries, America is at or near the bottom for virtually every measure of medical well-being—for chronic disease, depression, drug abuse, homicide, teenage pregnancies, HIV prevalence. Even sufferers of cystic fibrosis live ten years longer on average in Canada than in the United States. What is perhaps most surprising is that all these poorer outcomes apply not just to underprivileged citizens but to prosperous white college-educated Americans when compared with their socioeconomic equivalents abroad.
Bill Bryson (The Body: A Guide for Occupants)
Cultural capital is a form of wealth that is determined by its value in use, not its value in exchange. Its value increases in proportion to its abundance, not its scarcity. It is enjoyed by individuals, but it is a mutual creation that uses the resources of shared traditions and the collective imagination to generate a public, not a private, good. Cultural capitalism seeks to privatize this shared wealth, absorbing it into the circulation of commodities, and putting it to instrumental use. Contemporary
Robert Hewison (Cultural Capital: The Rise and Fall of Creative Britain)
Of course we rearmed,” Göring, seated once more next to the psychiatrist on his cot, said. “We rearmed Germany until we bristled. I am only sorry we did not rearm more. Of course, I considered treaties as so much toilet paper. Of course, I wanted to make Germany great. If it could be done peacefully, well and good. If not, that’s just as good. My plans against Britain were bigger than they ascribe to me even now. When they told me I was playing with war by building up the Luftwaffe, I replied I certainly was not running a finishing school.
Jack El-Hai (The Nazi and the Psychiatrist: Hermann Goring, Dr. Douglas M. Kelley, and a Fatal Meeting of Minds at the End of WWII)
But for reasons that genuinely escape me, it has also become spectacularly accommodating to stupidity. Where this thought most recently occurred to me was in a hotel coffee shop in Baltimore, where I was reading the local paper, the Sun, and I saw a news item noting that Congress had passed a law prohibiting the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services from funding research that might lead, directly or indirectly, to the introduction of gun controls. Let me repeat that but in slightly different words. The government of the United States refuses to let academics use federal money to study gun violence if there is a chance that they might find a way of reducing the violence. It isn’t possible to be more stupid than that. If you took all the commentators from FOX News and put them together in a room and told them to come up with an idea even more pointlessly idiotic, they couldn’t do it. Britain isn’t like that, and thank goodness. On tricky and emotive issues like gun control, abortion, capital punishment, the teaching of evolution in schools, the use of stem cells for research, and how much flag waving you have to do in order to be considered acceptably patriotic, Britain is calm and measured and quite grown up, and for me that counts for a great deal. —
Bill Bryson (The Road to Little Dribbling: More Notes from a Small Island)
India had a very long independence movement. It started in 1886, [with] the first generation of Western-educated Indians. They were all liberals. They followed the Liberal Party in Britain, and they were very proud of their knowledge of parliamentary systems, parliamentary manners. They were big debaters. They [had], as it were, a long apprenticeship in training for being in power. Even when Gandhi made it a mass movement, the idea of elective representatives, elected working committees, elected leadership, all that stayed because basically Indians wanted to impress the British that they were going to be as good as the British were at running a parliamentary democracy. And that helped quite a lot.
Meghnad Desai
SHAKESPEARE What is a man, If his chief good and market of his time Be but to sleep and feed? A beast, no more (Hamlet) There is no one kind of Shakespearean hero, although in many ways Hamlet is the epitome of the Renaissance tragic hero, who reaches his perfection only to die. In Shakespeare's early plays, his heroes are mainly historical figures, kings of England, as he traces some of the historical background to the nation's glory. But character and motive are more vital to his work than praise for the dynasty, and Shakespeare's range expands considerably during the 1590s, as he and his company became the stars of London theatre. Although he never went to university, as Marlowe and Kyd had done, Shakespeare had a wider range of reference and allusion, theme and content than any of his contemporaries. His plays, written for performance rather than publication, were not only highly successful as entertainment, they were also at the cutting edge of the debate on a great many of the moral and philosophical issues of the time. Shakespeare's earliest concern was with kingship and history, with how 'this sceptr'd isle' came to its present glory. As his career progressed, the horizons of the world widened, and his explorations encompassed the geography of the human soul, just as the voyages of such travellers as Richard Hakluyt, Sir Walter Raleigh, and Sir Francis Drake expanded the horizons of the real world.
Ronald Carter (The Routledge History of Literature in English: Britain and Ireland)
The Roman world, like an aged man, wished to dwell in peace and tranquillity and to enjoy in philosophic detachment the good gifts which life has to bestow upon the more fortunate classes. But new ideas disturbed the internal conservatism, and outside the carefully guarded frontiers vast masses of hungry, savage men surged and schemed. The essence of the Roman peace was toleration of all religions and the acceptance of a universal system of government. Every generation after the middle of the second century saw an increasing weakening of the system and a gathering movement towards a uniform religion. Christianity asked again all the questions which the Roman world deemed answered for ever, and some that it had never thought of.
Winston S. Churchill (The Birth of Britain (A History of the English Speaking Peoples #1))
For too long we have been the playthings of massive corporations, whose sole aim is to convert our world into a gargantuan shopping 'mall'. Pleasantry and civility are being discarded as the worthless ephemera of a bygone age; an age where men doffed their hats at ladies, and children could be counted on to mind your Jack Russell while you took a mild and bitter in the pub. The twinkly-eyed tobacconist, the ruddy-cheeked landlord and the bewhiskered teashop lady are being trampled under the mighty blandness of 'drive-thru' hamburger chains. Customers are herded in and out of such places with an alarming similarity to the way the cattle used to produce the burgers are herded to the slaughterhouse. The principal victim of this blandification is Youth, whose natural propensity to shun work, peacock around the town and aggravate the constabulary has been drummed out of them. Youth is left with a sad deficiency of joie de vivre, imagination and elegance. Instead, their lives are ruled by territorial one-upmanship based on brands of plimsoll, and Youth has become little more than a walking, barely talking advertising hoarding for global conglomerates. ... But now, a spectre is beginning to haunt the reigning vulgarioisie: the spectre of Chappism. A new breed of insurgent has begun to appear on the streets, in the taverns and in the offices of Britain: The Anarcho-Dandyist. Recognisable by his immaculate clothes, the rakish angle of his hat and his subtle rallying cry of "Good day to you sir/ madam!
Gustav Temple and Vic Darkwood (The Chap Manifesto: Revolutionary Etiquette for the Modern Gentleman)
And by the early 1970s our little parable of Sam and Sweetie is exactly what happened to the North American Golden Retriever. One field-trial dog, Holway Barty, and two show dogs, Misty Morn’s Sunset and Cummings’ Gold-Rush Charlie, won dozens of blue ribbons between them. They were not only gorgeous champions; they had wonderful personalities. Consequently, hundreds of people wanted these dogs’ genes to come into their lines, and over many matings during the 1970s the genes of these three dogs were flung far and wide throughout the North American Golden Retriever population, until by 2010 Misty Morn’s Sunset alone had 95,539 registered descendants, his number of unregistered ones unknown. Today hundreds of thousands of North American Golden Retrievers are descended from these three champions and have received both their sweet dispositions and their hidden time bombs. Unfortunately for these Golden Retrievers, and for the people who love them, one of these time bombs happens to be cancer. To be fair, a so-called cancer gene cannot be traced directly to a few famous sires, but using these sires so often increases the chance of recessive genes meeting—for good and for ill. Today, in the United States, 61.4 percent of Golden Retrievers die of cancer, according to a survey conducted by the Golden Retriever Club of America and the Purdue School of Veterinary Medicine. In Great Britain, a Kennel Club survey found almost exactly the same result, if we consider that those British dogs—loosely diagnosed as dying of “old age” and “cardiac conditions” and never having been autopsied—might really be dying of a variety of cancers, including hemangiosarcoma, a cancer of the lining of the blood vessels and the spleen. This sad history of the Golden Retriever’s narrowing gene pool has played out across dozens of other breeds and is one of the reasons that so many of our dogs spend a lot more time in veterinarians’ offices than they should and die sooner than they might. In genetic terms, it comes down to the ever-increasing chance that both copies of any given gene are derived from the same ancestor, a probability expressed by a number called the coefficient of inbreeding. Discovered in 1922 by the American geneticist Sewall Wright, the coefficient of inbreeding ranges from 0 to 100 percent and rises as animals become more inbred.
Ted Kerasote (Pukka's Promise: The Quest for Longer-Lived Dogs)
ultimately, most of us would choose a rich and meaningful life over an empty, happy one, if such a thing is even possible. “Misery serves a purpose,” says psychologist David Myers. He’s right. Misery alerts us to dangers. It’s what spurs our imagination. As Iceland proves, misery has its own tasty appeal. A headline on the BBC’s website caught my eye the other day. It read: “Dirt Exposure Boosts Happiness.” Researchers at Bristol University in Britain treated lung-cancer patients with “friendly” bacteria found in soil, otherwise known as dirt. The patients reported feeling happier and had an improved quality of life. The research, while far from conclusive, points to an essential truth: We thrive on messiness. “The good life . . . cannot be mere indulgence. It must contain a measure of grit and truth,” observed geographer Yi-Fu Tuan. Tuan is the great unheralded geographer of our time and a man whose writing has accompanied me throughout my journeys. He called one chapter of his autobiography “Salvation by Geography.” The title is tongue-in-cheek, but only slightly, for geography can be our salvation. We are shaped by our environment and, if you take this Taoist belief one step further, you might say we are our environment. Out there. In here. No difference. Viewed that way, life seems a lot less lonely. The word “utopia” has two meanings. It means both “good place” and “nowhere.” That’s the way it should be. The happiest places, I think, are the ones that reside just this side of paradise. The perfect person would be insufferable to live with; likewise, we wouldn’t want to live in the perfect place, either. “A lifetime of happiness! No man could bear it: It would be hell on Earth,” wrote George Bernard Shaw, in his play Man and Superman. Ruut Veenhoven, keeper of the database, got it right when he said: “Happiness requires livable conditions, but not paradise.” We humans are imminently adaptable. We survived an Ice Age. We can survive anything. We find happiness in a variety of places and, as the residents of frumpy Slough demonstrated, places can change. Any atlas of bliss must be etched in pencil. My passport is tucked into my desk drawer again. I am relearning the pleasures of home. The simple joys of waking up in the same bed each morning. The pleasant realization that familiarity breeds contentment and not only contempt. Every now and then, though, my travels resurface and in unexpected ways. My iPod crashed the other day. I lost my entire music collection, nearly two thousand songs. In the past, I would have gone through the roof with rage. This time, though, my anger dissipated like a summer thunderstorm and, to my surprise, I found the Thai words mai pen lai on my lips. Never mind. Let it go. I am more aware of the corrosive nature of envy and try my best to squelch it before it grows. I don’t take my failures quite so hard anymore. I see beauty in a dark winter sky. I can recognize a genuine smile from twenty yards. I have a newfound appreciation for fresh fruits and vegetables. Of all the places I visited, of all the people I met, one keeps coming back to me again and again: Karma Ura,
Eric Weiner (The Geography of Bliss: One Grump's Search for the Happiest Places in the World)
I’m talking to God here, be with ye as soon as we’re done,— Is Mason going to get angry and into a fight? Will he stand and announce, “This is none of God’s judgment,— to be offended as gravely by Calendar Reform as by Mortal Sin, requires a meanness of spirit quite out of the reach of any known Deity,— tho’ well within the resources of Stroud, it seems.” And walk out thro’ their stunn’d ranks to the Embrace of the Night, and never enter the place again? No.— He buys ev’ryone another Pint, instead, and resigns himself to seeking out his Family tomorrow,— tho’ sure Agents of Melancholy, they sooner or later feel regretful for it, whilst Regret is just the sort of Sentiment that regular life at The George depends on having no part of. The Landlord is kind and forthright, the Ale as good as any in Britain, the Defenestration of the Clothiers in ’56 has inscrib’d the place forever in Legend, and Good Eggs far outnumber Bad Hats,— yet so dismal have these late Hours in it been for Mason, as to make him actually look forward to meeting his Relations again.
Thomas Pynchon (Mason & Dixon)
help.’ ‘Can you get me out of here?’ ‘Not exactly.’ ‘So how can you help?’ ‘I... we can provide consular assistance. A translator for any interviews, a lawyer if you need one. And we’ll work closely with the authorities here to get you repatriated to Britain as soon as possible.’ ‘So what are you waiting for?’ Willoughby looked flustered. ‘It’s not quite that easy. We need to wait for the prosecutor to come back with their plan. At the moment we’re still waiting for the official charge.’ ‘I’ve not even been charged? And how long will that take?’ Willoughby rubbed the side of her neck. ‘That’s a good question. The system here is a bit different to back home, to say the least.’ ‘I’d never have imagined.’ ‘But, for starters, there’s something more pressing.’ ‘Which is?’ ‘We believe you’re British. That’s according to the information we’ve been given about your arrest, the communication we’ve had with the Mexican police and prosecution service, and… your accent speaking with me today.’ ‘I’m sensing a but.’ ‘We don’t know who you are. We don’t know your name
Rob Sinclair (The Black Hornet (James Ryker #2))
By the end of the 1970s, a clear majority of the employed population of Britain, Germany, France, the Benelux countries, Scandinavia and the Alpine countries worked in the service sector—communications, transport, banking, public administration and the like. Italy, Spain and Ireland were very close behind. In Communist Eastern Europe, by contrast, the overwhelming majority of former peasants were directed into labour-intensive and technologically retarded mining and industrial manufacture; in Czechoslovakia, employment in the tertiary, service sector actually declined during the course of the 1950s. Just as the output of coal and iron-ore was tailing off in mid-1950s Belgium, France, West Germany and the UK, so it continued to increase in Poland, Czechoslovakia and the GDR. The Communists’ dogmatic emphasis on raw material extraction and primary goods production did generate rapid initial growth in gross output and per capita GDP. In the short run the industrial emphasis of the Communist command economies thus appeared impressive (not least to many Western observers). But it boded ill for the region’s future.
Tony Judt (Postwar: A History of Europe Since 1945)
Most Europeans like to think that American bankruptocracy is worse than its European cousin, thanks to the power of Wall Street and the infamous revolving door between the US banks and the US government. They are very, very wrong. Europe’s banks were managed so atrociously in the years preceding 2008 that the inane bankers of Wall Street almost look good by comparison. When the crisis hit, the banks of France, Germany, the Netherlands and the UK had exposure in excess of $30 trillion, more than twice the United States national income, eight times the national income of Germany, and almost three times the national incomes of Britain, Germany, France and Holland put together.8 A Greek bankruptcy in 2010 would have immediately necessitated a bank bailout by the German, French, Dutch and British governments amounting to approximately $10,000 per child, woman and man living in those four countries. By comparison, a similar market turn against Wall Street would have required a relatively tiny bailout of no more than $258 per US citizen. If Wall Street deserved the wrath of the American public, Europe’s banks deserved 38.8 times that wrath. But
Yanis Varoufakis (Adults in the Room: My Battle with Europe's Deep Establishment)
Yet Laudan’s mother had no choice about whether to be a good cook or not. It was simply what was expected of her, and of every other farmer’s wife in England at that time. She did not cook because she ‘loved’ cooking but because this was the role that life had allotted her. There was nothing unusual in the way that Laudan’s mother cooked. If anything, her life in the kitchen was easy by the standards of the day. At least a farmer’s wife had access to plentiful meat and vegetables, whereas city cooks in early twentieth-century Britain were expected to produce the same quantity of meals but with meagre ingredients and limited equipment, often in single-room dwellings where there was no kitchen and no escape from cooking. We idealise the homespun meals of the past, imagining rosy-cheeked women laying down picturesque bottles of peaches and plums. But much of the art of ‘cooking’ in pre-modern times was a harried mother slinging what she could in a pot and engaging in a daily smoke-filled battle to keep a fire alive and under control, on top of all the other chores she had to manage. Before we offer too many lamentations for the cookery of the past, we should remember how hard it was – and still is, for millions of people – to cook when you have no choice in the matter.
Bee Wilson (The Way We Eat Now)
We believe that for this diabolical discovery to take its place in the armament of the nations of Europe, at a time when jealousies and fears and the rumours of wars are again lifting their heads, would be a refinement of ‘civilisation’ which the world could well be spared. You may say that the exclusive possession of this invention would confirm Great Britain in an unassailable supremacy, and perhaps thereby secure the peace of Europe. We answer that no secret can be kept for ever. The sword is two-edged. And, as Vargan answered me by saying, ‘Science is international’ – so I answer you by saying that humanity is also international. We are content to be judged by the verdict of history, when all the facts are made known. But in accomplishing what we have accomplished, we have put you in the way of learning our identities; and that, as you will see, must be an almost fatal blow to such an organisation as mine. Nevertheless, I believe that in time I shall find a way for us to continue the work that we have set ourselves to do. We regret nothing that we have already done. Our only regret is that we should be scattered before we have had time to do more. Yet we believe that we have done much good, and that this last crime of ours is the best of all. Au revoir! Simon Templar (‘The Saint’).
Leslie Charteris (The Saint Closes the Case)
It would be a kindness, by the way, and a service to history, if you could please rid yourself of the legend that Christians believed a fairy tale about the origin of the world until forced to think otherwise by the triumph of secular science. Substantially everyone in the Judeo-Christian bits of the planet believed the Genesis account until the early nineteenth century, remember, there being till then no organised alternative. The work of reading the geological record, and thereby exploding the Genesis chronology, was for the most part done not by anti-Christian refuseniks but by scientists and philosophers thinking their way onward from starting-points within the religious culture of the time. Once it became clear that truth lay elsewhere than in Genesis, religious opinion on the whole moved with impressive swiftness to accommodate the discovery. In the same way, when the Origin of Species was published, most Christians in Britain at least moved with some speed to incorporate evolutionary biology into their catalogue of ordinary facts about the world. Bishop Samuel Wilberforce’s resistance to Darwinism was an outlier, untypical. In fact, there’s a good case to be made that the ready acceptance of evolution in Britain owed a lot to the great cultural transmission mechanism of the Church of England. If you’re glad that Darwin is on the £10 note, hug an Anglican.
Francis Spufford (Unapologetic: Why, Despite Everything, Christianity Can Still Make Surprising emotional sense)
As all material creation consists of out-births of things spiritual, the spiritual world being the world of causes, and the natural world that of effects, and as effects are the repositories of their causes, the natural world is the reflection of the spiritual. For this reason, from the beginning of things, the sun has stood out as a pre-eminent symbol of the things of God. Of all inanimate things it bears the closest correspondence to the Supreme Being, for what it is in the natural world the Supreme Being is in the Spiritual. Its central fire is the correspondence of the essence of the Divine Nature--DIVINE LOVE; its heat the correspondence of the heat flowing from Divine Love, which is Divine Goodness and all that that comprises; its light the correspondence of Divine Truth which is the light proceeding from Divine Wisdom; and the union of heat and light in its central essence forever symbolizes the union of the Divine Love and Wisdom resulting from that of the Divine Will and Understanding. God is the SUN from whose heat and light--His Love and Wisdom--proceed all that is spiritual, and through the spiritual, by the medium of the natural sun, all that is natural. The sun is supreme in all natural things, and its operations run through all in its own world, but the Divine SUN from which it derives its origin is supreme in all and operates through all, above and below. And as the natural sun is everywhere present in its own realm, and all things derive their life and grow in more or less perfect measure according to their forms and distances, so is the Supreme One omnipresent, filling both the spiritual and the natural world.
John Daniel (The Philosophy Of Ancient Britain)
And immediately we rushed like horses, wild with the knowledge of this song, and bolted into a startingly loud harmony: 'Rule Britannia, Britannia rules the waves; Britons, never-never-ne-verr shall be slaves!' and singing, I saw the kings and the queens in the room with us, laughing in a funny way, and smiling and happy with us. The headmaster was soaked in glee. And I imagined all the glories of Britannia, who, or what or which, had brought us out of the ships crossing over from the terrible seas from Africa, and had placed us on this island, and had given us such good headmasters and assistant masters, and such a nice vicar to teach us how to pray to God - and he had come from England; and such nice white people who lived on the island with us, and who gave us jobs watering their gardens and taking out their garbage, most of which we found delicious enough to eat...all through the ages, all through the years of history; from the Tudors on the wall, down through the Stuarts also on the wall, all through the Elizabethans and including those men and women singing in their hearts with us, hanging dead and distant on our schoolroom walls; Britannia, who, or what or which, had ruled the waves all these hundreds of years, all these thousands and millions of years, and kept us on the island, happy - the island of Barbados (Britannia the Second), free from all invasions. Not even the mighty Germans; not even the Russians whom our headmaster said were dressed in red, had dared to come within submarine distance of our island! Britannia who saw to it that all Britons (we on the island were, beyond doubt, little black Britons, just like the white big Britons up in Britannialand. The headmaster told us so!) - never-never-ne-verr, shall be slaves!
Austin Clarke (Amongst Thistles and Thorns)
In conclusion, the American century is not over, if by that we mean the extraordinary period of American pre-eminence in military, economic, and soft power resources that have made the United States central to the workings of the global balance of power, and to the provision of global public goods. Contrary to those who proclaim this the Chinese century, we have not entered a post-American world. But the continuation of the American century will not look like it did in the twentieth century. The American share of the world economy will be less than it was in the middle of the last century, and the complexity represented by the rise of other countries as well as the increased role of non-state actors will make it more difficult for anyone to wield influence and organize action. Analysts should stop using clichés about unipolarity and multipolarity. They will have to live with both in different issues at the same time. And they should stop talking and worrying about poorly specified concepts of decline that mix many different types of behavior and lead to mistaken policy conclusions. Leadership is not the same as domination. America will have to listen in order to get others to enlist in what former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton called a multipartner world. It is important to remember that there have always been degrees of leadership and degrees of influence during the American century. The United States never had complete control. As we saw in Chapter 1, even when the United States had preponderant resources, it often failed to get what it wanted. And those who argue that the complexity and turmoil of today’s entropic world is much worse than the past should remember a year like 1956 when the United States was unable to prevent Soviet repression of a revolt in Hungary, French loss of Vietnam, or the Suez invasion by our allies Britain, France, and Israel. One should be wary of viewing the past through rose-tinted glasses. To borrow a comedian’s line, “hegemony ain’t what it used to be, but then it never was.” Now, with slightly less preponderance and a much more complex world, the United States will need to make smart strategic choices both at home and abroad if it wishes to maintain its position. The American century is likely to continue for a number of decades at the very least, but it will look very different from how it did when Henry Luce first articulated it.
Joseph S. Nye Jr. (Is the American Century Over? (Global Futures))
The most poignant lesson, which proved to be the last, was held a few days before the wedding. Diana’s thoughts were on the profound changes ahead. Miss Snipp noted: “Lady Diana rather tired--too many late nights. I delivered silver salt-cellars--present from West Heath school--very beautiful and much admired. Lady Diana counting how many days of freedom are left to her. Rather sad. Masses of people outside of Palace. We hope to resume lessons in October. Lady Diana said: “In 12 days time I shall no longer be me.’” Even as she spoke those words Diana must have known that she had left behind her bachelor persona as soon as she had entered the Palace portals. In the weeks following the engagement she had grown in confidence and self-assurance, her sense of humour frequently bubbling to the surface. Lucinda Craig Harvey saw her former cleaning lady on several occasions during her engagement, once at the 30th birthday party of her brother-in-law, Neil McCorquodale. “She had a distance to her and everyone was in awe of her,” she recalls. It was a quality also noticed by James Gilbey. “She has always been seen as a typical Sloane Ranger. That’s not true. She was always removed, always had a determination about her and was very matter-of-fact, almost dogmatic. That quality has now developed into a tremendous presence.” While she was in awe of Prince Charles, deferring to his every decision, she didn’t appear to be overcome by her surroundings. Inwardly she may have been nervous, outwardly she appeared calm, relaxed and ready to have fun. At Prince Andrew’s 21st birthday party which was held at Windsor Castle she was at her ease among friends. When her future brother-in-law asked where he could find the Duchess of Westminster, the wife of Britain’s richest aristocrat, she joked: “Oh Andrew, do stop name dropping.” Her ready repartee, cutting but not vicious, was reminiscent of her eldest sister Sarah when she was the queen bee of the Society circuit. “Don’t look so serious it’s not working,” joked Diana as she introduced Adam Russell to the Queen, Prince Charles and other members of the royal family in the receiving line at the ball held at Buckingham Palace two days before her wedding. Once again she seemed good humoured and relaxed in her grand surroundings. There wasn’t the slightest sign that a few hours earlier she had collapsed in paroxysms of tears and seriously considered calling the whole thing off.
Andrew Morton (Diana: Her True Story in Her Own Words)
times had changed. The chief impetus for rethinking the value of colonies was the global Depression. It had triggered a desperate scramble among the world’s powers to prop up their flagging economies with protective tariffs. This was an individual solution with excruciating collective consequences. As those trade barriers rose, global trade collapsed, falling by two-thirds between 1929 and 1932. This was exactly the nightmare Alfred Thayer Mahan had predicted back in the 1890s. As international trade doors slammed shut, large economies were forced to subsist largely on their own domestic produce. Domestic, in this context, included colonies, though, since one of empire’s chief benefits was the unrestricted economic access it brought to faraway lands. It mattered to major imperial powers—the Dutch, the French, the British—that they could still get tropical products such as rubber from their colonies in Asia. And it mattered to the industrial countries without large empires—Germany, Italy, Japan—that they couldn’t. The United States was in a peculiar position. It had colonies, but they weren’t its lifeline. Oil, cotton, iron, coal, and many of the important minerals that other industrial economies found hard to secure—the United States had these in abundance on its enormous mainland. Rubber and tin it could still purchase from Malaya via its ally Britain. It did take a few useful goods from its tropical colonies, such as coconut oil from the Philippines and Guam and “Manila hemp” from the Philippines (used to make rope and sturdy paper, hence “manila envelopes” and “manila folders”). Yet the United States didn’t depend on its colonies in the same way that other empires did. It was, an expert in the 1930s declared, “infinitely more self-contained” than its rivals. Most of what the United States got from its colonies was sugar, grown on plantations in Hawai‘i, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and the Philippines. Yet even in sugar, the United States wasn’t dependent. Sugarcane grew in the subtropical South, in Louisiana and Florida. It could also be made from beets, and in the interwar years the United States bought more sugar from mainland beet farmers than it did from any of its territories. What the Depression drove home was that, three decades after the war with Spain, the United States still hadn’t done much with its empire. The colonies had their uses: as naval bases and zones of experimentation for men such as Daniel Burnham and Cornelius Rhoads. But colonial products weren’t integral to the U.S. economy. In fact, they were potentially a threat.
Daniel Immerwahr (How to Hide an Empire: A History of the Greater United States)
If we do not stop these mar-makers not, will soon be too late. We are the only nation that can halt this crusade. It might be too late in America, but it isn't too late here. Without British support the whole scheme would collapse. For that reason the future of all nations depends upon the policy which is decided in this House. More than that, the final position of Britain in the world is being decided. If we support these anti-Communist crusades through the world as we have supported it in Greece, then our good name and existence will be threatened by the hatred of all free-thinking men. We cannot suppress all desire in Europe and Asia for social change by branding it communism from Russia and persecuting its supporters. Social change doesn't have to come from Russia, whatever the Foreign Office or the Americans say. It is a product of the miserable conditions under which the majority of the earth's population exist. There are fighters for social change in every land, here as well as anywhere.... We Socialists are among them. That is the reason for our predominance in the House to-day. The very men that we try to suppress in other countries are asking for far less liberty than we enjoy here, far less social change than we Socialists hope to initiate in Great Britain. Are we going to betray these men by labelling them Communists and crushing them wherever we find them until we have launched ourselves at Russia herself in a war that will wipe this island off the face of the earth? The American imperialists say that this is the American Century. ARe we to sacrifice ourselves for that great ideal, or are we to stand beside the people of Europe and Asia and other lands who seek independence, economic stability, self-determination, and the right to conduct their own affairs? Are we going to partake in an anti-Red campaign when we ourselves are Reds? ...... Some among us might think that there is political expediency in following this anti-Russian crusade without really getting enmeshed in it, creating a Third Force in Europe of their friends, a balancing force for power politics. In that you have the real policy of our Government to-day. But how can we avoid final involvement? Our American vanguard will stop at nothing. They hold their atom bomb aloft with nervous fingers. It has become their talisman and their faith. It is their new weapon of anti-Communism, a more efficient Belsen and Maidenek. Its first usage was morally anti-Russian. It was used to end Japan quickly so that Russia would play no part in the final settlement with that country. No doubt they would have used it on Russia already if they could be certain that Russian did not have an equal or better atomic weapon. That terrible uncertainty goads them into fiercer political and economic activity against the world's grim defenders of great liberties. In that you have the heart of this American imperial desperation. They cannot defeat the people of Europe and Asia with the atomic bomb alone. They cannot win unless we lend them our name and our support and our political cunning. To-day they have British support, in policy as well as in international councils where the decisions of peace and security are being made. With our support America is undermining every international conference with its anti-Russian politics.
James Aldridge (The Diplomat)
If you read British Foreign Office records from the 1940s, it’s clear they recognised that their day in the sun was over and that Britain would have to be the “junior partner” of the United States, and sometimes treated in a humiliating way. A striking example of this was in 1962, the time of the Cuban missile crisis. The Kennedy planners were making some very dangerous choices and pursuing policies which they thought had a good chance of leading to nuclear war, and they knew that Britain would be wiped out. The US wouldn’t, because Russia’s missiles couldn’t reach there, but Britain would be wiped out.
Noam Chomsky
some of my good Baptist brethren in Georgia had done a little preaching from the pulpit against the KKK, I would have a little more genuine American respect for their Christianity.
Norman Moss (Nineteen Weeks: America, Britain, and the Fateful Summer of 1940)
You have sat here too long for any good you may be doing. Depart, I say, and let us have done with you! In the name of God, go!
Norman Moss (Nineteen Weeks: America, Britain, and the Fateful Summer of 1940)
State schooling in Britain both today and when I was a child seems stuck in a Victorian-era paradigm, guided by notions of discipline, obedience and deference to ones betters, of becoming a good worker and getting a good job. The idea that we go to school to find our passions, our calling, to learn to be happy, to ‘draw out that which is within’, as the root meaning of the word ‘educate’ commands, is almost entirely absent. Let alone any sense that we plebs should contemplate participating in the governing of the country.
Akala (Natives: Race and Class in the Ruins of Empire)
It’s the belief that the system is rigged against you and that all attempts to resist or challenge it are futile. That the decisions that affect your life are being taken by a bunch of other people somewhere else who are deliberately trying to conceal things from you. A belief that you are excluded from taking part in the conversation about your own life. This belief is deeply held by people in many communities and there is a very good reason for it: it’s true.
Darren McGarvey (Poverty Safari: Understanding the Anger of Britain's Underclass)
left school without knowing what capitalism was, much less a mortgage, interest rates, central banking, fiat currency or quantitative easing. The word imperialism had never been used in the classroom, much less ‘class struggle’. What history I did learn can be seen as little more than aristocratic nationalist propaganda; Henry VIII and his marital dramas; how Britain and America defeated the Nazis – minus the Commonwealth and with a very vague mention of the Soviet contribution; how Britain had basically invented democracy and all that was good and wonderful.
Akala (Natives: Race and Class in the Ruins of Empire)
I give you 1970s Great Britain: a place that many believe was a land of joyous liberty before the totalitarian oppression of The Political Correctness Brigade committed the heinous Stalinist crime of actually making it a bit difficult to take the piss out of ethnic minorities, gay or disabled people, and only ever regard women as either battleaxes or sex objects.
Nikesh Shukla (The Good Immigrant)
Mr. Dursley sat frozen in his armchair. Shooting stars all over Britain? Owls flying by daylight? Mysterious people in cloaks all over the place? And a whisper, a whisper about the Potters . . . Mrs. Dursley came into the living room carrying two cups of tea. It was no good. He’d have to say something to her. He cleared his throat nervously. “Er — Petunia, dear — you haven’t heard from your sister lately, have you?
J.K. Rowling (Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (Harry Potter, #1))
It may seem strange to call this slow collapse invisible since so much of it is obvious: the deep uncertainties about the union after the Good Friday Agreement of 1998 and the establishment of the Scottish Parliament the following year; the consequent rise of English nationalism; the profound regional inequalities within England itself; the generational divergence of values and aspirations; the undermining of the welfare state and its promise of shared citizenship; the contempt for the poor and vulnerable expressed through austerity; the rise of a sensationally self-indulgent and clownish ruling class. But the collective effects of these inter-related developments seem to have been barely visible within the political mainstream until David Cameron accidentally took the lid off by calling the EU referendum and asked people to endorse the status quo. What we see with the mask pulled back and the fog of fantasies at last beginning to dissipate is the revelation that Brexit is much less about Britain's relationship with the EU than it is about Britain's relationship with itself. It is the projection outwards of an inner turmoil. An archaic political system carried on even while its foundations in a collective sense of belonging were crumbling. Brexit in one way alone has done a real service: it has forced the old system to play out its death throes in public. The spectacle is ugly, but at least it shows that a fissiparous four-nation state cannot be governed without radical social and cconstitutional change.
Fintan O'Toole (Scotland the Brave? Twenty Years of Change and the Future of the Nation)
What the journalist Alex Massie wrote in The Spectator offers a warning beyond Britain: If you spend days, weeks, months, years telling people that they are under threat, that their country has been stolen from them, that they have been betrayed and sold down the river . . . that their problem is they’re not sufficiently mad as hell, then at some point, in some place something or someone is going to snap.
Jason DeParle (A Good Provider Is One Who Leaves: One Family and Migration in the 21st Century)
Despite their drawbacks, Newcomens revitalized the mining industry in north-central England.26 Between 1710 and 1733, when the patent expired, no fewer than 104 Newcomen engines were built in Britain and abroad.27 Many more would follow—550 or more by 1800—but coal’s industrial uses were still limited.28 No one had yet devised a process for smelting good iron with coal; its primary market was still for home heating. As that market glutted, coal prices plummeted.
Richard Rhodes (Energy: A Human History)
While Britain has preserved the HMS Victory as a tribute to Nelson, as well as other ships from key periods of British history, not a single slave ship survives.- You have to stand in awe of the intellectual obedience it takes to still cheer for empire after the revelation that the government hid or burned a good portion of the evidence of what that empire actually consisted of, but such is the use to which we put our free thinking.
Akala (Natives: Race and Class in the Ruins of Empire)
We have, in fact, used the good name of England to cover up a massacre.” What, O’Malley wondered, would “this dislocation between our public attitude and our private feelings” portend for Britain’s future dealings with both the Poles and the Russians?
Lynne Olson (A Question of Honor: The Kosciuszko Squadron: Forgotten Heroes of World War II)
We have heard over and over that blacks are the only people who were brought to America against their will, and that this terrible blow explains their failures centuries later. In fact, hundreds of thousands of European criminals and paupers were forcibly exiled to America, and Britain was still dumping its human refuse in America as late as 1885—more than a century after independence.286 Other whites came to America in bondage as indentured servants. They ran away, were recaptured, and flogged just like slaves. One scholar estimates that more than half of the white immigrants to the thirteen original colonies came as bondsmen.287 But more to the point, it is exquisitely irrelevant whether anyone’s great-great-great-great grandparents came to America by free will or not. No one chooses his birthplace, so except for first-generation immigrants, no one in America has any more choice over his homeland than do the descendants of slaves. This does not stop people from blaming slavery for everything from drug addiction to murder rates to illegitimacy.
Jared Taylor (Paved With Good Intentions: The Failure of Race Relations in Contemporary America)
As the producer states gradually forced the major oil companies to share with them more of the profits from oil, increasing quantities of sterling and dollars flowed to the Middle East. To maintain the balance of payments and the viability of the international financial system, Britain and the United States needed a mechanism for these currency flows to be returned. [...] The purchase of most goods, whether consumable materials like food and clothing or more durable items such as cars or industrial machinery, sooner or later reaches a limit where, in practical terms, no more of the commodity can be used and further acquisition is impossible to justify. Given the enormous size of oil revenues, and the relatively small populations and widespread poverty of many of the countries beginning to accumulate them, ordinary goods could not be purchased at a rate that would go far to balance the flow of dollars (and many could be bought from third countries, like Germany and Japan – purchases that would not improve the dollar problem). Weapons, on the other hand, could be purchased to be stored up rather than used, and came with their own forms of justification. Under the appropriate doctrines of security, ever-larger acquisitions could be rationalised on the grounds that they would make the need to use them less likely. Certain weapons, such as US fighter aircraft, were becoming so technically complex by the 1960s that a single item might cost over $10 million, offering a particularly compact vehicle for recycling dollars. Arms, therefore, could be purchased in quantities unlimited by any practical need or capacity to consume. As petrodollars flowed increasingly to the Middle East, the sale of expensive weaponry provided a unique apparatus for recycling those dollars – one that could expand without any normal commercial constraint.
Timothy Mitchell (Carbon Democracy: Political Power in the Age of Oil)
Little deeds of kindness, little words of love Help to make the earth happy, like the heaven above. JULIA CARNEY, 1823—1908
Nicholas Rhea (Constable along the Lane)
A pall in the hall of cigarette smoke, lager, sweat, hairspray, Old Spice, Evening in Paris, Brut – all the good ones.
Andrew Matheson (Sick On You: The Disastrous Story of Britain’s Great Lost Punk Band)
The impact of European conquerors on Africa, for good and evil, was relatively brief as history is measured-about three generations, as compared to the centuries in which the Romans ruled Britain or imperial China ruled parts of southeast Asia or the Moors ruled Spain.
Thomas Sowell (Conquests And Cultures: An International History)
Neville Chamberlain, the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, honestly believed that he could reason with Adolf Hitler in good faith. Now, most history books find little else to say about Chamberlain and he is solely remembered for believing that he could pacify Herr Führer by signing the Munich Agreement of 1938. In doing this, he ceded to Germany the Sudetenland, a German-speaking part of Czechoslovakia, without having any real authority to do so. Three days later, French Prime Minister Édouard Daladier followed suit, thereby giving the “German Reich” a piece of Czechoslovakia, consisting of the border districts of Bohemia, Moravia, and parts of Silesia. In March of 1939, German troops rolled in and occupied the territory. Three other parts broke off from Czechoslovakia, with one becoming the Slovak Republic, another part being annexed by Hungary, and the third part, which was borderland, becoming a part of Poland. These all came together to become satellite states and allies of Nazi Germany. On May 10, 1940, in a radio address to the 8th Pan American Scientific Congress, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt declared, “I am a pacifist. You, my fellow citizens of twenty-one American Republics, are pacifists too.” Roosevelt was referring to Canada and Latin America. The United States attempted to remain neutral and did not enter into the war until four days after Pearl Harbor was attacked by Japan. Roosevelt opposed the concept of war and made every attempt to find a peaceful solution to the hostilities in Europe. On December 11, 1941, after Japan’s attack on Pearl Harbor, both Germany and Italy declared war on the United States.
Hank Bracker
For many years South Africa was occupied primarily by Dutch farmers known as Boers who had first arrived in the Cape of Good Hope in 1652 when Jan van Riebeeck established the Dutch East India Company and later by British settlers who arrived in the Cape colony after the Napoleonic wars in the 1820’s, on board the sailing ships the Nautilus and the Chapman. For the most part the two got along like oil and water. After 1806, some of the Dutch-speaking settlers left the Cape Colony and trekked into the interior where they established the Boer Republics. There were many skirmishes between them as well as with the native tribes. In 1877 after the First Boer War between the Dutch speaking farmers and the English the Transvaal Boer republic was seized by Britain. Hostilities continued until the Second Boer War erupted in October of 1899 costing the British 22,000 lives. The Dutch speaking farmers, now called Afrikaners, lost 7,000 men and having been overrun by the English acknowledged British sovereignty signing the peace agreement, known as the “Treaty of Vereeniging,” on May 31, 1902. Although this thumbnail sketch of South African history leaves much unsaid, the colonial lifestyle continued for the privileged white ruling class until the white, pro-apartheid National Party was peacefully ousted and the African National Congress won. Nelson Mandela was elected as the first black president on May 9, 1994. On May 10, 1994, Mandela was inaugurated as The Republic of South Africa's new freely elected President with Thabo Mbeki and F.W. De Klerk as his vice-presidents.
Hank Bracker
1870, Britain produced 32 percent of all the manufactured goods in the world, followed by the United States at 23 percent and Germany at 13 percent.
Thomas Sowell (Conquests And Cultures: An International History)
Great Britain will certainly do her utmost to organise a coalition resistance to any act of aggression committed by any Power, and it is believed that the United States will co-operate with her, and even possibly take the lead of the world, on account of her numbers and strength, in the good work of preventing such tendencies to aggression before they break into open war.
Winston S. Churchill (The Hinge of Fate (The Second World War, #4))
That is probably the single phrase that a lot of Jerusalem rests upon: the persistent illusion of transience. The buildings that we love have been pulled down, the people that we loved have gone, you don’t get anything decent on a Saturday night on the telly any more, they don’t make Spangles . . . all of this roster of loss that is our lives, it doesn’t matter. It’s all fine. It’s all back down the road. You’ll probably be experiencing it again, and again, because there’s nowhere else for your consciousness to go. ‘This means that you should never do anything that you can’t live with eternally, which I think is a good rule for life. It also means that Heaven and Hell exist. They’re just not places that are elsewhere. They are here now. They are your life.
John Higgs (Watling Street: Travels Through Britain and Its Ever-Present Past)
About this time we received a visit from Lord Trenchard. He seemed remarkably young for a man who commanded the R.A.F. in the last war, and he chatted to us for a long time in a very paternal and charming manner, congratulated us on our successes, and said that the only way to win this war was to give the Hun such hell as he had never had before and would never want again. We all felt that this was remarkably good advice, to be followed whenever possible.
David M. Crook (Spitfire Pilot: A Personal Account of the Battle of Britain)
Beyond the intermingling of their finances and interests, the Western rich and the oligarchic rich share an ideological affinity that is worth worrying about too: they are unshakeable in their belief that they are entitled to their wealth, and have every moral right to resist attempts to reduce it. It never occurs to them that they are lucky; that if they are Western speculators, they are lucky to have lived during a time when the negligent governments of America and Britain failed to regulate finance and allowed them to take incredible risks at no personal cost; that if they are post-communist oligarchs, they were lucky to be in place when the Soviet Union collapsed, and to have the connections and muscle to take control of the old empire’s raw materials. To outsiders their luck seems self-evident. Yet nowhere in the recorded utterances of the plutocracy does one find a glimmer of an understanding that time and chance played a part in their good fortune.
Nick Cohen (You Can't Read This Book: Censorship in an Age of Freedom)
There are several forms of suppression available. The use of expensive lawyers to punish critics in libel courts, most notably in Britain, but in France, Brazil and Singapore as well, is an under-explored form of censorship that allows the wealthiest people on the planet to intimidate their opponents. The control by the wealthy of parts of the media is a kind of censorship, if not in the age of the Internet a censorship that is as effective as it once was. The most obvious restriction on freedom of speech, and the one which can cause the most damage to the common good, is so ubiquitous and accepted we do not even call it censorship, or think of tearing off the gag that silences us.
Nick Cohen (You Can't Read This Book: Censorship in an Age of Freedom)
We now reflexly, and dishonestly, unmask all virtue as hypocritical, all beauty as Kitsch; and have become so jaded with simplicity and wholesomeness that we find Good insipid and crave the sharp stimulus of sin.
Bruce G. Charlton (Addicted to Distraction: Psychological Consequences of the Modern Mass Media)
Second only to the royals in Michael’s gallery of good-for-nothings were, of course, the Tories. John Major occupied a special page in Michael’s book of bad ones. The trouble began when Suraj Paul, a staunch Labour Party backer and friend to Michael, invited him to the festivities celebrating his twenty-five years of doing business in Britain. Lord Paul had built a factory in Michael’s constituency and another one in John Major’s. A fortnight before the grand event, Lord Paul rang up Michael to say he had encountered a “terrible difficulty. I hate what I’m doing, but I’ve got to. I have to say to you that Major [then Prime Minister] had said that if you’re coming to the ceremony, he won’t come.” Michael was flabbergasted: “I hadn’t any great antagonism with Major or anything of the sort.” Of course, Michael relieved Lord Paul of his problem by not attending the event. “I’ve never told anyone. Nobody’s put it into print. But I see no reason why it shouldn’t go into the book. The pettiest thing I’ve ever heard of. Naturally I don’t think much of him on that account.
Carl Rollyson (A Private Life of Michael Foot)
Good architecture in Britain today is as much a matter of administration as ability.
Ian Nairn
Germany had bombed Britain, and Britain had bombed back, and had gotten pretty good at it. In 1943 they had started a firestorm that all but wiped Hamburg out. Flames a thousand feet high, temperatures of a thousand degrees, the air on fire, the roads on fire, rivers and canals
Lee Child (Night School (Jack Reacher, #21))
11. There Is No Education Like Adversity In 1941, as Britain was in the darkest days of World War Two, Churchill told a generation of young people that ‘these are great days - the greatest days our country has ever lived.’ But why was Churchill telling them that those bleak, uncertain, life-threatening and freedom-challenging days were also the best days of their lives? He knew that it’s when times are tough, when the conditions are at their worst, that we learn what we are truly capable of. There are few greater feelings than finding out you can achieve more, and endure more, than you had previously imagined, and it’s only when we are tested that we realize just how brightly we can shine. It’s a cliché, but it’s true: diamonds are formed under pressure. And without the pressure, they simply remain lumps of coal. The greatest trick in life is to learn to see adversity as your friend, your teacher and your guide. Storms come to make us stronger. No one ever achieves their dream without first stumbling over a few obstacles along the way. Experience teaches you to understand that those obstacles are actually a really good indication that you are on the right road. Trust me: if you find a road without any obstacles, I can promise you it doesn’t lead anywhere worthwhile. So, embrace the adversity, embrace the obstacles, and get ready for success. Today is the start of the greatest days of your life…
Bear Grylls (A Survival Guide for Life: How to Achieve Your Goals, Thrive in Adversity, and Grow in Character)
Mrs. Dursley had had a nice, normal day. She told him over dinner all about Mrs. Next Door’s problems with her daughter and how Dudley had learned a new word (“Won’t!”). Mr. Dursley tried to act normally. When Dudley had been put to bed, he went into the living room in time to catch the last report on the evening news: “And finally, bird-watchers everywhere have reported that the nation’s owls have been behaving very unusually today. Although owls normally hunt at night and are hardly ever seen in daylight, there have been hundreds of sightings of these birds flying in every direction since sunrise. Experts are unable to explain why the owls have suddenly changed their sleeping pattern.” The newscaster allowed himself a grin. “Most mysterious. And now, over to Jim McGuffin with the weather. Going to be any more showers of owls tonight, Jim?” “Well, Ted,” said the weatherman, “I don’t know about that, but it’s not only the owls that have been acting oddly today. Viewers as far apart as Kent, Yorkshire, and Dundee have been phoning in to tell me that instead of the rain I promised yesterday, they’ve had a downpour of shooting stars! Perhaps people have been celebrating Bonfire Night early — it’s not until next week, folks! But I can promise a wet night tonight.” Mr. Dursley sat frozen in his armchair. Shooting stars all over Britain? Owls flying by daylight? Mysterious people in cloaks all over the place? And a whisper, a whisper about the Potters . . . Mrs. Dursley came into the living room carrying two cups of tea. It was no good. He’d have to say something to her. He cleared his throat nervously. “Er — Petunia, dear — you haven’t heard from your sister lately, have you?” As
J.K. Rowling (Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (Harry Potter, #1))
we hit the Rotunda and we did a quick spin around the Museum of London and into the bit of Little Britain that runs beside Postman’s Park. The trees in the park still had most of their leaves, and the street was narrow and shaded and smelled of wet grass rather than the busy cement smell you get in the rest of the City. The office was based in a Mid-Victorian pile whose Florentine flourishes were not fooling anyone but itself. There was a brass plaque by the door engraved with “Public Policy Foundation” and beyond the doors a cool blue marble foyer and a young and strangely elongated white woman behind a reception desk. Because it’s not good policy to, we hadn’t called ahead to make an appointment. Which gave Guleed a chance to tease the receptionist by not showing her warrant card when she identified herself. The receptionist’s expression did a classic three point turn from alarm to suspicion and finally settling on professional friendliness as she picked up the phone and informed someone at the other end that the “police” had arrived to talk to Mr. Chorley.
Ben Aaronovitch (The Hanging Tree (Rivers of London, #6))
The prisoner was Driver A. J. Hayes, chauffeur of the commander of one of the crack field batteries attached to the Fourth Indian Division. “He says Hitler has on several occasions offered Britain good peace terms. But Churchill, inspired by malice and ruthlessness, is leading the British people toward the abyss. The prisoner’s manner of speaking makes his testimony seem trustworthy.
David Irving (THE TRAIL OF THE FOX The Search for the True Field Marshall)
In the north,” I said, “the majority of the people have outdoor toilets. The ones that have an indoor privy are well to do and have a full bib and tucker. I am afraid Britain is not like Germany, or even the rest of Western Europe where pretty well everyone has an indoor WC. Your Hitler was a mean bugger,” I said, “but he was good for modern sanitation.
Harry Leslie Smith (The Empress of Australia: A Post-War Memoir)
This individual, who, either in his own person or in that of some member of his family, seemed to be always in trouble (which in that place meant Newgate), called to announce that his eldest daughter was taken up on suspicion of shoplifting. As he imparted this melancholy circumstance to Wemmick, Mr Jaggers standing magisterially before the fire and taking no share in the proceedings, Mike’s eye happened to twinkle with a tear. ‘What are you about?’ demanded Wemmick, with the utmost indignation. ‘What do you come snivelling here for?’ ‘I did’t go to do it, Mr Wemmick.’ ‘You did,’ said Wemmick. ‘How dare you? You’re not in a fit state to come here, if you can’t come here without spluttering like a bad pen. What do you mean by it?’ ‘A man can’t help his feelings, Mr Wemmick,’ pleaded Mike. ‘His what?’ demanded Wemmick, quite savagely. ‘Say that again!’ ‘Now, look here my man,’ said Mr Jaggers, advancing a step, and pointing to the door. ‘Get out of this office. I’ll have no feelings here. Get out.’ ‘It serves you right,’ said Wemmick. ‘Get out.’ So the unfortunate Mike very humbly withdrew, and Mr Jaggers and Wemmick appeared to have re-established their good understanding, and went to work again with an air of refreshment upon them as if they had just had lunch. Chapter Thirteen From Little Britain, I went, with my cheque in my pocket, to Miss Skiffins’s brother, the accountant; and Miss Skiffins’s brother, the accountant, going straight to Clarriker’s and bringing Clarriker to me, I had the great satisfaction of concluding that arrangement.
Charles Dickens (Great Expectations)
At the level of economic theory, the great fallacy in the logic of David Ricardo, the father of free-trade theory, was to view the gains and losses of trade in a static fashion, as a snapshot at a single point in time. In Ricardo’s theory, whose variants are espoused by free-market economists to this day, if nineteenth-century Britain offered better and cheaper manufactured goods, the US should buy them and export something where it could compete—say, raw cotton and lumber—even if that meant the US never developed an industrial economy. By the same token, if twentieth-century America made the best cars, machine tools, and steel, Japan and Korea should import those, and continue to export cheap toys and rice. And if other nations subsidized US industries, Americans, rather than being fearful of displacement, should accept the “gift.” What Ricardo missed—and what leaders from Alexander Hamilton and Abraham Lincoln to Teddy Roosevelt grasped (likewise statesmen in nations from Japan to Brazil), as well as dissenting economists like the German Friedrich List and the Americans Paul Krugman and Dani Rodrik—was that the dynamic gains of economic development over time far surpass the static gains at a single point in time. Economic advantage is not something bestowed by nature. Advantage can be deliberately created—an insight for which Krugman won a Nobel Prize. Policies of economic development often required an active role for the state, in violation of laissez-faire.
Robert Kuttner (Can Democracy Survive Global Capitalism?)
In a double-page spread in 1999, the Daily Mail ran a large photo of fake Nazis from ’Allo ’Allo! with a think-piece headlined ‘In the week that Germany kept the old feud alive by illegally banning British beef: Why it’s a good thing for us to be beastly to the Germans.’ It was written, not by some hack but by the distinguished historian Niall Ferguson. He found a way to argue both that the ‘war’ with Germany was entirely phoney and that it was nonetheless worth continuing because it was somehow in Europe’s best interests. While conceding ‘The reality is that we have more in common with the Germans than with any other European people’, Ferguson managed to conclude that ‘bad Anglo-German relations were (paradoxically) a good thing. To be precise: it would really be rather bad for everyone else in Europe if Britain and Germany did strike up a firm alliance.
Fintan O'Toole (Heroic Failure: Brexit and the Politics of Pain)
Returning from a summit in Paris three months after the referendum, Wilson ‘proudly announced that he has saved Britain from the horrors of the “Euroloaf” and “Eurobeer”. “An imperial pint is good enough for me and for the British people, and we want it to stay that way.”’11 Wilson undoubtedly knew that this was nonsense, but he also knew, as Johnson would discover, that it was the kind of nonsense that sold well. The British had an insatiable appetite for every kind of Euromenace to their food and drink.
Fintan O'Toole (Heroic Failure: Brexit and the Politics of Pain)
There are few men in Britain who cannot find time to speak to me." "And what of their wives?" "What of them?" "You think they won't judge you?" "I think they all want me in their beds, so they will find room for me in their drawing rooms." Her head snapped back at the words, at their indelicacy. At the idea that he would say such a thing to his wife. At the idea that he would spend time in other wives' beds. "I think that you mistake the value of your presence in a lady's bedchamber." He raised a brow. "I think you will feel differently after tonight." The specter of their wedding night loomed in the words, and Penelope hated that her pulse quickened even as she wanted to spit at him. "Yes, well, however you might ensorcel the women of the ton, I can guarantee you that they are far more discerning in their company in public than they are in private. And you are not good enough.
Sarah MacLean (A Rogue by Any Other Name (The Rules of Scoundrels, #1))
The Ballad of John Axon was the first of a series created by MacColl, Seeger and BBC producer Charles Parker that shone the microphone like a searchlight into obscure or overlooked sectors of British society: fishermen, teenagers, motorway builders, miners, polio sufferers, even the nomadic travelling community. Gathered on the spot, their oral histories were reworked as intelligent and dynamic folk anthropology, attuned to their era’s nuanced tug-of-war between conservatism and progress. The eight programmes, broadcast by the BBC between 1958–64, were experiments conducted on the wireless, splicing spoken word, field recordings, sound effects, traditional folk song and newly composed material into audio essays that verged on the hypnotic. They were given a name that elegantly fused tradition and modernity: radio ballads. Until the mid-1950s standard BBC practice in making radio documentaries involved researchers visiting members of the public – ‘actuality characters’ – and talking to them, perhaps even recording them, then returning to headquarters and working out a script based on their testimonies. The original subjects would then be revisited and presented with the scripted version of their own words. That’s the reason such programmes sound so stilted to modern ears: members of the public are almost always speaking a scriptwriter’s distillation of their spontaneous thoughts. When MacColl and Charles Parker drove up to Stockport in the autumn of 1957 with an EMI Midget tape recorder in their weekend bags, they planned to interview Axon’s widow and his colleagues for information, then turn their findings into a dramatic reconstruction featuring actors and musicians. In fact, they stayed in the area for around a fortnight and ended up with more than forty hours of voices and location recordings. The material, they agreed, was too good to tamper with.
Rob Young (Electric Eden: Unearthing Britain's Visionary Music)
Old England to adorn, Greater is none beneath the sun, Than Oak, and Ash, and Thorn. Sing Oak, and Ash, and Thorn, good sirs, (All of a Midsummer morn!) Surely we sing of no little thing, In Oak, and Ash, and Thorn! Rudyard Kipling, ‘Oak, Ash, and Thorn’ (1906) In Rudyard Kipling’s classic Edwardian children’s book Puck of Pook’s Hill, a faery apparition casts a spell over two children by brushing a clump of oak, ash and thorn leaves across their faces. They enter a time-travelling trance in which historical figures – Romans, Domesday-era knights, feudal barons – manifest themselves and spin rambling yarns of their exploits, battles, treachery and derring-do, all of which have taken place across the very land that now forms the kids’ adventure playground. This vertical exploded view of England’s pastures is Edwardian psychogeography, designed to instil a sense of the heroic history that has cut its furrows deep in the soil, sowing the seeds of a national psyche. Ushered there by Puck’s cunning wood magic, the greenwood becomes the gateway to an idealised England where the imagination runs naked and free, until the time comes to swish the oak, ash and thorn twigs once more, awaken from the English dreaming and return to … well, in Kipling’s children’s case, no doubt a piping hot tea of crumpets and scones, lavished upon them by a servile nanny.
Rob Young (Electric Eden: Unearthing Britain's Visionary Music)
Allied shipping losses reached a staggering 7.8 million tons in 1942. By early 1943, food supplies to Britain had dwindled to two-thirds of normal levels. The government was forced to ration basic goods. Less than three months of commercial oil reserves remained—ten months, if all emergency military reserves were included. Oil supply was not publicly discussed, but every commander, on both sides of the Atlantic, paid close attention. No oil meant no planes, no ships, no transport. No ability to resist the German machine. And Britain was running on fumes.
Safi Bahcall (Loonshots: How to Nurture the Crazy Ideas That Win Wars, Cure Diseases, and Transform Industries)
In the Times of London, the Conservative Party parliamentarian Matt Ridley called on his colleagues to “start spreading the good news on inequality.” The good news, he said, is that everybody is getting better off; it just happens at different rates. “Any increase in wealth inequality or pre-tax income inequality in Britain or America is caused by the rich getting disproportionately richer, not by the poor getting poorer.”4
T.R. Reid (A Fine Mess: A Global Quest for a Simpler, Fairer, and More Efficient Tax System)
The Egyptians took their goods to their graves with them. The great dynasties of Britain and Europe try to keep things in the family so long as there is something in the bank. But Americans prefer to turn it into cash and start anew. They are less sentimental about these things.
Robert Lacey (Sotheby's: Bidding for Class)
Rule one,” Bran said, “is never rush in. It’s a good rule for life as well as combat.
Frank Tayell (Britain's End (Surviving The Evacuation #12))
Nasser was proving to be quite an adept administrator, with Britain’s ambassador admitting that the new government was ‘as good as any previous... and in one respect better than any, in that it is trying to do something for the people of Egypt rather than merely talk about it’.
Christopher Davidson (Shadow Wars: The Secret Struggle for the Middle East)
may surprise you,’ he urged. Lily’s eyes no longer smiled. Now their licorice darkness reflected only bitterness. ‘It’s not a matter of me finding the courage, Jack. I know my parents. They won’t surprise me. They’re very predictable. They’re also traditional and as far as they’re concerned, I’m as good as engaged … no, married! And they approve of Jimmy.’ Her expression turned glum. ‘All that’s missing are the rings and the party.’ ‘Lily, risk their anger or whatever it is you’re not prepared to provoke but don’t do this.’ He stroked her cheek. ‘Forget me. I’m not important. I’m talking about the rest of your life, here. From what I can see of my friends and colleagues, marriage is hard enough without the kiss of death of not loving your partner.’ ‘It’s not his fault, Jack. You don’t understand. It’s complicated. And in his way, Jimmy is very charismatic.’ Jack didn’t know Professor James Chan, eminent physician and cranio-facial surgeon based at Whitechapel’s Royal London Hospital, but he already knew he didn’t much like him. Jack might be sleeping with Lily and loving every moment he could share with her, but James Chan had a claim on her and that pissed Jack off. Privately, he wanted to confront the doctor. Instead, he propped himself on one elbow and tried once more to reason with Lily. ‘It’s not complicated, actually. This isn’t medieval China or even medieval Britain. This is London 2005. And the fact is you’re happily seeing me … and you’re nearly thirty, Lily.’ He kept his voice light even though he felt like shaking her and cursing. ‘Are you asking me to make a choice?’ He shook his head. ‘No. I’m far more subtle. I’ve had my guys rig up a camera here. I think I should show your parents exactly what you’re doing when they think you’re comforting poor Sally. I’m particularly interested in hearing their thoughts on that rather curious thing you did to me on Tuesday.’ She gave a squeal and punched him, looking up to the ceiling, suddenly unsure. Jack laughed but grew serious again almost immediately. ‘Would it help if I —?’ Lily placed her fingertips on his mouth to hush him. She kissed him long and passionately before replying. ‘I know I shouldn’t be so answerable at my age but Mum and Dad are so traditional. I don’t choose to rub it in their face that I’m not a virgin. Nothing will help, my beautiful Jack. I will marry Jimmy Chan but we have a couple more weeks before I must accept his proposal. Let’s not waste it arguing and let’s not waste it on talk of love or longing. I know you loved the woman you knew as Sophie, Jack. I know you’ve been hiding from her memory ever since and, as much as I could love you, I am not permitted to because I’m spoken for and you aren’t ready to be in love again. This is not a happy-ever-after situation for us. I know you enjoy me and perhaps could love me but this is not the right moment for us to speak of anything but enjoying the time we have, because neither of us is available for anything beyond that.’ ‘You’re wrong, Lily.’ She smiled sadly and shook her head. ‘I have to go.’ Jack sighed. ‘I’ll drop you back.’ ‘No need,’ Lily said, moving from beneath the quilt, shivering as the cool air hit her naked body. ‘I have to pick up Alys from school. She’s very sharp and I don’t need her spotting you – especially as she’s had a crush on you since you first came into the flower shop.’ Suddenly she grinned. ‘If you hurry up, at least we can shower together!’ Jack leaped from the bed and dashed to the bathroom to turn on the taps. He could hear her laughing behind him but he felt sad. Two more weeks. It wasn’t fair – and then, as if the gods had decided to punish him further, his mobile rang, the ominous theme of Darth Vader telling him this was not a call he could ignore. He gave a groan. ‘Carry on without me,’ he called to Lily, reaching for the phone. ‘Hello, sir,’ he said, waiting for the inevitable apology
Fiona McIntosh (Beautiful Death (DCI Jack Hawksworth))
This Cinderella ecology isn’t so new in Britain. The last windfall of sites for rare natives and exotic invaders happened after bombs dropped on London and elsewhere in World War II. The profusion of unexpected species that populated the craters was so great that it was rumored they had been dropped with the bombs as biological weapons of war.7 The Moroccan poppy and the American willow herb were both first spotted in Britain in the remains of bombed-out buildings in the City of London and subsequently spread across Britain. Those were good times for thorn apple from North America and rosebay willow herb from the Yukon, which was nicknamed “bombweed” by Cockney Londoners. Some were newcomers, but many were old arrivals. The daisy-like gallant soldier, its common name a corruption of its Latin name Galinsoga parviflora, came to Kew Gardens from Peru in the 1790s but proliferated unexpectedly in the bomb craters.
Fred Pearce (The New Wild: Why Invasive Species Will Be Nature's Salvation)
This was the country impoverished by British conquest. The India that succumbed to British rule enjoyed an enormous financial surplus, deployed a skilled artisan class, exported high-quality goods in great global demand, disposed of plenty of arable land, had a thriving agricultural base, and supported some 100 to 150 million without either poverty or landlessness. All of this was destroyed by British rule. As Wilson points out: ‘In 1750, Indians had a similar standard of living to people in Britain. Now, average Indian incomes are barely a tenth of the British level in terms of real purchasing power. It is no coincidence that 200 years of British rule occurred in the intervening time.
Shashi Tharoor (Inglorious Empire: What the British Did to India)
State schooling in Britain both today and when I was a child seems stuck in a Victorian-era paradigm, guided by notions of discipline, obedience and deference to ones betters, of becoming a good worker and getting a good job. The idea that we go to school to find our passions, our calling, to learn to be happy, to ‘draw out that which is within’, as the root meaning of the word ‘educate’ commands, is almost entirely absent. Let alone any sense that we plebs should contemplate participating in the governing of the country.
Akala (Natives: Race and Class in the Ruins of Empire)
I belong to the Reformed tradition, and may have had perhaps a little to do in Britain with the restoration of this emphasis during the last forty years or so. I am disturbed therefore when I am often told by members of churches that many of the younger Reformed men are very good men, who have no doubt read a great deal, and are very learned men, but that they are very dull and boring preachers; and I am told this by people who themselves hold the Reformed position. This is to me a very serious matter; there is something radically wrong with dull and boring preachers. How can a man be dull when he is handling such themes? I would say that a ‘dull preacher’ is a contradiction in terms; if he is dull he is not a preacher. He may stand in a pulpit and talk, but he is certainly not a preacher. With the grand theme and message of the Bible dullness is impossible. This is the most interesting, the most thrilling, the most absorbing subject in the universe; and the idea that this can be presented in a dull manner makes me seriously doubt whether the men who are guilty of this dullness have ever really understood the doctrine they claim to believe, and which they advocate. We often betray ourselves by our manner.
D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (Preaching and Preachers)
Australia has become a much sought-after paradise destination for people seeking global migration and better lives. It is a stable constitutional monarchy, a liberal democracy and a first world country. It has a high standard of living, sound investment prospects, good growth, political and economic stability and excellent wages and conditions. It offers protection of individual rights by the well-established rule of law with roots in Great Britain.Tyndall & Co. provides migration advice, consulting and visa preparation and lodgment services, and is a registered Australian migration agent.
In the period immediately following ratification of the Constitution in 1789, the national public service at its upper levels has been described as a “Government by Gentlemen” and it did not look too different in certain respects from the one that existed in early-nineteenth-century Britain.8 One might also label it government by the friends of George Washington, since the republic’s first president chose men like himself who he felt had good qualifications and a dedication to public service.9 Under John Adams, 70 percent, and under Jefferson, 60 percent of high-ranking officials had fathers who came from the landed gentry, merchant, or professional classes.10 Many people today marvel at the quality of political leadership at the time of America’s founding, the sophistication of the discourse revealed in the Federalist Papers, and the ability to think about institutions in a long-term perspective. At least part of the reason for this strong leadership was that America at the time was not a full democracy but rather a highly elitist society, many of whose leaders were graduates of Harvard and Yale. Like the British elite, many of them knew each other personally from school and from their common participation in the revolution and drafting of the Constitution.
Francis Fukuyama (Political Order and Political Decay: From the Industrial Revolution to the Globalization of Democracy)
writing his own orders was ‘a good way of ensuring that my instructions are satisfactory’.
James Barr (A Line in the Sand: Britain, France and the struggle that shaped the Middle East)
In Britain, the advertising business was so complex that the Scotch, English, and Irish Newspapers, and Advertising Office in Edinburgh offered clients access to 115 newspapers across the empire, including the Botany Bay Gazette and the Madras Courier.28 Good communications networks and fierce competition meant that even rural people had a choice of private subscriptions, and taverns, inns, and coffee houses regularly subscribed to a host of newspapers
Troy Bickham (The Weight of Vengeance: The United States, the British Empire, and the War of 1812)
Again and again, the question was asked: What made the Poles so good? The answer wasn’t simple. Generally older than their British counterparts, most Polish pilots had hundreds of hours of flying time in a variety of aircraft, as well as combat experience in both Poland and France. Unlike British fliers, they had learned to fly in primitive, outdated planes and thus had not been trained to rely on a sophisticated radio and radar network. As a result, said one British flight instructor, “their understanding and handling of aircraft was exceptional.” Although they appreciated the value of tools such as radio and radar, the Poles never stopped using their eyes to locate the Luftwaffe. “Whereas British pilots are trained…to go exactly where they are told, Polish pilots are always turning and twisting their heads to spot a distant enemy,” an RAF flier noted. The Poles’ intensity of concentration was equaled only by their daring. British pilots were taught to fly and fight with caution. The Poles, by contrast, had been trained to be aggressive, to crowd and intimidate the enemy, to make him flinch and then bring him down. After firing a brief opening burst at a range of 150 to 200 yards, the Poles would close almost to point-blank range. “When they go tearing into enemy bombers and fighters they get so close you would think they were going to collide,” observed one RAF flier. On several occasions, crew members of Luftwaffe bombers, seeing that 303’s Hurricanes were about to attack, baled out before their planes were hit. On September 15, the Poles of
Lynne Olson (Last Hope Island: Britain, Occupied Europe, and the Brotherhood That Helped Turn the Tide of War)
Appeasement was a policy put in place by Neville Chamberlain, the British Prime Minister to try to avert war. His theory was that trying to prevent Germany from getting what it wanted would cause more harm than good in the long run. Therefore Britain’s official foreign policy would be that they would fulfill Germany’s wishes, “provided they appeared legitimate and were not enforced with violence,” described in German newspaper Der Spiegel. Chamberlain was aware that the British Empire’s resources were limited and that they really didn’t have the power to stop Hitler. So cooperating with them seemed like a better option.
Bill O'Neill (The World War 2 Trivia Book: Interesting Stories and Random Facts from the Second World War)
The 1944 pamphlet advising US troops on how to behave in wartime Britain, which is being re-published by the Imperial War Museum, was not the first of its kind. I still have a copy of one given to my mother in 1943, which contains the following gem: “The British don’t know how to make a good cup of coffee. You don’t know how to make a good cup of tea. It’s an even swap.” Willie Montgomery Norwich
Iain Hollingshead (Did Anyone Else See That Coming.?)
Tricia loved New York because loving New York was a good career move. It was a good retail move, a good cuisine move, not a good taxi move or a great quality of pavement move, but definitely a career move that ranked amongst the highest and the best. Tricia was a TV anchor person, and New York was where most of the world’s TV was anchored. Tricia’s TV anchoring had been done exclusively in Britain up to that point: regional news, then breakfast news, early evening news. She would have been called, if the language allowed, a rapidly rising anchor, but... hey, this is television, what does it matter? She was a rapidly rising anchor. She had what it took: great hair, a profound understand- ing of strategic lip gloss, the intelligence to understand the world and a tiny secret interior deadness which meant she didn’t care. Everybody has their moment of great opportunity in life. If you happen to miss the one you care about, then everything else in life becomes eerily easy. Tricia had only ever missed one opportunity. These days it didn’t even make her tremble quite so much as it used to to think about it. She guessed it was that bit of her that had gone dead.
Douglas Adams (Mostly Harmless (Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, #5))
clustered behind national barriers, what was good for General Motors was good for America. The annual gross domestic product figure meant as much to GM’s American customers as it did to the company. If the US economy grew by 5 per cent, there was a high chance the auto-maker’s bottom line had expanded by a similar amount. America’s median income growth rose in line with GDP. Much the same could have been said of Britain’s ICI, or Rolls-Royce. That is an outmoded way of measuring growth in today’s world. Since 2009, the US economy has expanded by roughly 2 per cent a year. Yet it took until 2015 for the median income to regain the level it enjoyed before the Great Recession. Perhaps ‘enjoyed’ is the wrong word. The median income in 2007 was below what it was in 2002, at the start of the business cycle that lasted for most of George W. Bush’s presidency. What is good for Apple may not be good for America. It shuttered its last US production facility in 2004. The Bush expansion was the first on record where middle-class incomes were lower at the end of it than at the start. Today, the US median income is still below where it was at the beginning of this century. Clearly what the typical American understands by growth differs greatly from that of macroeconomists. GDP numbers insist we are doing well, at a time when half the country is suffering from personal recessions. The
Edward Luce (The Retreat of Western Liberalism)
Some police forces would believe anything. Not the Metropolitan police, though. The Met was the hardest, most cynically pragmatic, most stubbornly down-to-earth police force in Britain. It would take a lot to faze a copper from the Met. It would take, for example, a huge, battered car that was nothing more nor less than a fireball, a blazing, roaring, twisted metal lemon from Hell, driven by a grinning lunatic in sunglasses, sitting amid the flames, trailing thick black smoke, coming straight at them through the lashing rain and the wind at eighty miles per hour. That would do it every time.   THE
Terry Pratchett (Good Omens: The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter, Witch)
I may not be good at climbing, may lack the upper-body and leg strength required to make me a good cyclist or an ironman competitor, may have spent my schooldays getting an 'acceptable' for my level of fitness and a 'cause for concern' for my attitude towards exercise, but, despite all my athletic shortfalls, what I lack in agility I more than make up for in bloody-minded stubbornness and unfailing blind optimism.
Phoebe Smith (Wild Nights: Camping Britain's Extremes)
The rationing system that was set up in Britain at the outbreak of the hostilities was as revolutionary as anything the Communists could have dreamed up. Almost every basic item of food was rationed , as were other essentials such as clothing and household goods. Nobody was entitled to more food if they were richer, or of a higher social standing than their neighbors -the only people entitled to better rations were those in the armed forces, or those in occupations that required heavy physical labour. As a consequence, the general health of the population actually improved (italics) during the war: by the late 1940's infant mortality rates in England were in steady decline, and deaths from a variety of disease had also dropped substantially since the prewar years. From the standpoint of public health, the war made Britain a much fairer society. There were other changes in Britain during the war that had a similar effect, such as the introduction of conscription to people of all classes, and both sexes. "Social and sexual distinctions were swept away.' wrote Theodora FitzGibbon. 'and when a dramatic change such as that takes place, it never goes back quite in the same way.
Keith Lowe (Savage Continent: Europe in the Aftermath of World War II)
Our neighbor, Hugo du Toit, was a very handsome Afrikaner, who, with his two sisters, was a close friend of Louis Botha, the first Prime Minister of the Union of South Africa, and also a close friend of General Jan Christiaan Smuts, the Prime Minister of the Union of South Africa from 1919 until 1924. He became a South African military leader during World War II. Although some accuse Smuts of having started apartheid, he later stood against it and was a force behind the founding of the United Nations. He is still considered one of the most eminent Afrikaners ever…. At his expansive farm house, Hugo had autographed photos of both men on his study wall. Parties were frequently held at my grandparents’ home and the thought of roasted turkeys and potatoes which Cherie had prepared, brings back warm memories of a delightful era, now lost forever.” The Colonial History of South Africa For many years South Africa was occupied primarily by Dutch farmers known as Boers who had first arrived in the Cape of Good Hope in 1652 when Jan van Riebeeck established the Dutch East India Company and later by British settlers who arrived in the Cape colony after the Napoleonic wars in the 1820’s, on board the sailing ships the Nautilus and the Chapman. For the most part the two got along like oil and water. After 1806, some of the Dutch-speaking settlers left the Cape Colony and trekked into the interior where they established the Boer Republics. There were many skirmishes between them, as well as with the native tribes. In 1877 after the First Boer War between the Dutch speaking farmers and the English, the Transvaal Boer republic was seized by Britain. Hostilities continued until the Second Boer War erupted in October of 1899, costing the British 22,000 lives. The Dutch speaking farmers, now called Afrikaners, lost 7,000 men and having been overrun by the English acknowledged British sovereignty by signing the peace agreement, known as the “Treaty of Vereeniging,” on May 31, 1902. Although this thumbnail sketch of South African history leaves much unsaid, the colonial lifestyle continued on for the privileged white ruling class until the white, pro-apartheid National Party, was peacefully ousted when the African National Congress won a special national election. Nelson Mandela was elected as the first black president on May 9, 1994. On May 10, 1994, Mandela was inaugurated as The Republic of South Africa's new freely elected President with Thabo Mbeki and F.W. De Klerk as his vice-presidents.
Hank Bracker
Koreans are good at engaging in crisis,” he said, pointing to all the times the country had been invaded—by Britain, Russia, China, Japan, and the United States. “Only two countries are still alive after hundreds of invasions: Scotland and Korea.” Thus,
Euny Hong (The Birth of Korean Cool: How One Nation Is Conquering the World Through Pop Culture)
The broad white road unrolled before the long procession, the sun and sky surveyed it cloudless, the wind tossed the tree boughs above it, and the twelve hundred children and one hundred and forty adults of which it was composed trod on in time and tune, with gay faces and glad hearts. It was a joyous scene, and a scene to do good. It was a day of happiness for rich and poor — the work, first of God, and then of the clergy. Let England’s priests have their due. They are a faulty set in some respects, being only of common flesh and blood like us all; but the land would be badly off without them. Britain would miss her church, if that church fell. God save it! God also reform it!
Charlotte Brontë (The Brontës Complete Works)
Alerted by the door’s subtle chime, Dr. Ricard emerged from an interior room. She had shoulder-length silver hair that didn’t match her youthful face. Square black glasses, minimal makeup, black knit pants with a deep-cut black-and-white silk top—Ricard was an odd mixture of hippie and hip. She couldn’t be more than forty, but Taylor wasn’t very good with ages. Ricard crossed the room and held out her hand. Taylor shook it, then followed when the doctor gestured, leading the way into her inner sanctum. The room was filled with sunlight—facing east, the early morning sun spilled through the windows, lending an air of good cheer to the surroundings. Two heavy couches faced one another across a second art deco glass coffee table; a large wing chair covered in black velvet bore the markings of frequent use. Sure enough, Ricard crossed the room, curled like a cat with her feet tucked under her, laid the notepad and pen on the coffee table and indicated Taylor should sit with a nod of her head. Taylor did, amazed at the control the woman exuded without even speaking. After a moment, the doctor spoke, her accented voice making Taylor feel like she was on a museum tour in Great Britain.
J.T. Ellison (Judas Kiss (A Taylor Jackson Novel))
walk away from its treaty obligations by invoking the doctrine of State sovereignty. This was settled by a decision of the Permanent Court of Justice (PCIJ)10 over 80 years ago. SS Wimbledon Case (Britain v Germany) (1923) PCIJ (Series A) No 1, 25 The court declines to see in the conclusion of any treaty by which a State undertakes to perform or refrain from performing a particular act an abandonment of sovereignty. No doubt any convention creating an obligation of this kind places a restriction upon the exercise of the sovereign rights of the State, in the sense that it requires them to be exercised in a certain way. But the right of entering into international engagements is an attribute of State sovereignty. Implementation
Roy Goode (Transnational Commercial Law: Texts, Cases and Materials)
Throughout the summer of 1911 correspondence flowed back and forth between Cox and his superiors in Delhi and London about Shakespear’s proposals and the policy Britain should adopt toward Ibn Saud. Officials in London remained fearful not only of antagonising the Ottomans but of the possibility that if Ibn Saud drove the Turks out of Hasa he might himself become a danger to British interests in the region and advance south into Muscat. In the end, despite Cox’s continued advocacy and the support of a few more far-sighted officials in the Indian and London governments, Britain’s concern to maintain good relations with Turkey as a protective buffer between Europe and Asia and against any German, French or Russian designs on Britain’s Indian Empire, together with on-going fears in London and India of taking any step which might be perceived as antagonistic towards Turkey and the Caliphate and so serve to inflame anti-British sentiment among Muslims in India, prevailed. Ibn Saud’s request for some form of alliance or protective agreement with Britain was to be politely rejected. From Britain’s point of view Ibn Saud, despite his successes and growing power, remained no more than the minor ruler of an out of the way, strategically and economically unimportant minor statelet. This was the tenth time in the nine years since his recapture of Riyadh that Ibn Saud’s overtures towards the British had been rejected.
Barbara Bray (Ibn Saud: The Desert Warrior Who Created the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia)
Actually, the Italian Renaissance thinker would probably have been much more taken by the other FU, Francis Urquhart from the BBC's version of House of Cards. Francis Urquhart is every bit as devious and ruthless as Underwood. But he is much better at the how as well as the why. Unlike Underwood, Urquhart is careful to maintain a reputation for neutrality and integrity (“It becomes us to be humble and honest, good old Francis Urquhart still”). Also, he has a clear view of what is good for the nation and simply believes that he is the right person to secure it (“Britain must be governed, and you know who will do it best”). It
J. Edward Hackett (House of Cards and Philosophy: Underwood's Republic)
Publisher’s note The information supplied in this Guide has been published in good faith on the basis of information submitted by the schools listed. Neither Kogan Page nor Gabbitas Educational Consultants can guarantee the accuracy of the information in this Guide and accept no responsibility for any error or misrepresentation. All liability for loss, disappointment, negligence or other damage caused by the reliance on the information contained in this Guide, or in the event of bankruptcy or liquidation or cessation of trade of any company, individual or firm mentioned, is hereby excluded. First published in Great Britain in 1995 by Kogan Page Limited This eighteenth edition published in 2013 Apart from any fair dealing for the purposes of research or private study, or criticism or review, as permitted under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act, 1988, this publication may only be reproduced, stored or transmitted, in any form, or by any means, with the prior permission
Gabbitas Educational Consultants (The Independent Schools Guide 2012-2013: A Fully Comprehensive Guide to Independent Education in the United Kingdom)
To be a smuggler in Britain was to be in good company, for
Louis L'Amour (To the Far Blue Mountains (Sacketts, #2))
In that same village, and in one of these very houses (which, to tell the precise truth, was sadly time-worn and weather-beaten), there lived, many years since, while the country was yet a province of Great Britain, a simple, good-natured fellow, of the name of Rip Van Winkle. He was a descendant of the Van Winkles who figured so gallantly in the chivalrous days of Peter Stuyvesant, and accompanied him to the siege of Fort Christina. He inherited, however, but little of the martial character of his ancestors. I have observed that he was a simple, good-natured man; he was, moreover, a kind neighbor, and an obedient henpecked husband. Indeed, to the latter circumstance might be owing that meekness of spirit which gained him such universal popularity; for those men are apt to be obsequious and conciliating abroad, who are under the discipline of shrews at home. Their tempers, doubtless, are rendered pliant and malleable in the fiery furnace of domestic tribulation, and a curtain-lecture is worth all the sermons in the world for teaching the virtues of patience and long-suffering. A termagant wife may, therefore, in some respects, be considered a tolerable blessing, and if so, Rip Van Winkle was thrice blessed.
Geoffrey Crayon (The Legend of Sleepy Hollow + Rip Van Winkle + Old Christmas + 31 Other Unabridged & Annotated Stories (The Sketch Book of Geoffrey Crayon, Gent.))
Another thing you need to understand is what we now call the “core competencies” of your organization. What are we really good at? What do our customers pay us for? Why do they buy from us? In a competitive, nonmonopolistic market—and that is what the world has become—there is absolutely no reason why a customer should buy from you rather from your competitor. None. He pays you because you give him something that is of value to him. What is it that we get paid for? You may think this is a simple question. It is not. I have been working with some of the world’s biggest manufacturers, producers, and distributors of packaged consumer goods. All of you use their products, even in Slovenia. They have two kinds of customers. One, of course, is the retailer. The other is the housewife. What do they pay for? I have been asking this question for a year now. I do not know how many companies in the world make soap, but there are a great many. And I can’t tell the difference between one kind of soap or the other. And why does the buyer have a preference—and a strong one, by the way? What does it do for her? Why is she willing to buy from one manufacturer when on the same shelves in the United States or in Japan or in Germany they are soaps from other companies? She usually does not even look at them. She reaches out for that one soap. Why? What does she see? What does she want? Try to work on this. Incidentally, the best way to find out is to ask customers not by questionnaire but by sitting down with them and finding out. The most successful retailer I know in the world is not one of the big retail chains. It is somebody in Ireland, a small country about the size of Slovenia. This particular company is next door to Great Britain with its very powerful supermarkets, and all of them are also in Ireland. And yet this little company has maybe 60 percent of the sandwich market. What do they do? Well, the answer is that the boss spends two days each week in one of his stores serving customers, from the meat counter to the checkout counter, and is the one who puts stuff into bags and carries it out to the shoppers’ automobiles. He knows what the customers pay for. But let me go back to the beginning: The place to start managing is not in the plant, and it is not in the office. You start with managing yourself by finding out your own strengths, by placing yourself where your strengths can produce results and making sure that you set the right example (which is basically what ethics is all about), and by placing your people where their strengths can produce results.
Peter F. Drucker (The Drucker Lectures : Essential Lessons on Management, Society and Economy)
Nigel Havers One of Britain’s leading stage and television actors, Nigel Havers has also appeared in many outstanding film productions, including Chariots of Fire, A Passage to India, Empire of the Sun, The Whistle Blower, Farewell to the King, Quiet Days in Clichy, and The Private War of Lucinda Smith. He has recently completed his autobiography, Playing with Fire, published by Headline. One afternoon, when I was filming a series called The Good Guys and Polly was away in Spain, all the crew were all a bit beady-eyed with me. “What on earth is going on, guys?” I asked. But they kept looking at me in a strange way. It transpired that on the front of the Evening Standard was the first transcript of the Diana tapes--the Squidgy tapes--and no one knew who the man calling Diana Squidgy was and the headline on the front page said it was me! As everyone was hiding the paper from me, I went and grabbed it. “My God, it’s not me. It’s not me, I know,” I said. It wasn’t me, of course. But when you read something and your name is in banner headlines, there is a split second where you almost believe it. I called Diana at once (she had given me her private mobile number), and she laughed like a drain when I told her how panicked I was. She literally couldn’t stop laughing. I was a bit jumpy around her because I fancied her so much, but I really just felt sad for her. When she came to tea with me, she would be wearing jeans and a T-shirt. She just walked out of Kensington Palace and up Kensington High Street to my flat. She told me that no one would turn around, and as they weren’t expecting to see her strolling down the street, she was never recognized.
Larry King (The People's Princess: Cherished Memories of Diana, Princess of Wales, from Those Who Knew Her Best)
Norway also benefited enormously from windfall taxes from oil but unlike Britain, Norway invested much of its good fortune in an endowment.2 Today, this endowment has grown over time to be worth an extraordinary $720 billion, making it the world’s largest sovereign wealth fund and providing a cushion against unknown future scenarios.
Greg McKeown (Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less)
Honour is completely the wrong word. It is a control murder. That’s what these are. It is not honour crime; it is ‘control crime’ and fear of losing that control. It really is beyond belief that he [Mohammed Riaz] felt this – the five graves – was the answer to losing control of his family. What is honourable about this? Caneze had done nothing wrong. On the contrary, she was doing so much that was good. Every one of those children there are testament to that, and they have all suffered because of one man and his completely twisted view on life . . . Women are dying and being brutalised in this situation many times throughout Britain at the moment. Cultural sensitivity is absolutely no excuse for moral blindness, and there’s too much fannying about going on both sides, from both communities, and as long as that remains the situation, then young women are going to keep dying. It’s as simple as that.
Harry Keeble (Hurting Too Much: Shocking Stories from the Frontline of Child Protection)
You have not tasted servitude. There is no land beyond us and even the sea is no safe refuge when we are threatened by the Roman fleet. We are the last people on earth, and the last to be free: our very remoteness in a land known only to rumour has protected us up till this day. Today the furthest bounds of Britain lie open—and everything unknown is given an inflated worth. But now there is no people beyond us, nothing but tides and rocks and, more deadly than these, the Romans. It is no use trying to escape their arrogance by submission or good behaviour. They have pillaged the world: when the land has nothing left for men who ravage everything, they scour the sea. If an enemy is rich, they are greedy, if he is poor, they crave glory. Neither East nor West can sate their appetite. They are the only people on earth to covet wealth and poverty with equal craving. They plunder, they butcher, they ravish, and call it by the lying name of 'empire'. They make a desolation and call it 'peace
Hong Kong became a British colony after the Treaty of Nanking in 1842, the result of the Opium War. This was a particularly shameful episode, even by the standards of 19th-century imperialism. The growing British taste for tea had created a huge trade deficit with China. In a desperate attempt to plug the gap, Britain started exporting opium produced in India to China. The mere detail that selling opium was illegal in China could not possibly be allowed to obstruct the noble cause of balancing the books. When a Chinese official seized an illicit cargo of opium in 1841, the British government used it as an excuse to fix the problem once and for all by declaring war. China was heavily defeated in the war and forced to sign the Treaty of Nanking, which made China 'lease' Hong Kong to Britain and give up its right to set its own tariffs. So there it was-the self-proclaimed leader of the 'liberal' world declaring war on another country because the latter was getting in the way of its illegal trade in narcotics. The truth is that the free movement of goods, people, and money that developed under British hegemony between 1870 and 1913-the first episode of globalization-was made possible, in large part, by military might, rather than market forces. Apart from Britain itself, the practitioners of free trade during this period were mostly weaker countries that had been forced into, rather than had voluntarily adopted, it as a result of colonial rule or 'unequal treaties' (like the Nanking Treaty), which, among other things, deprived them of the right to set tariffs and imposed externally determined low, flat-rate tariffs (3-5%) on them.
Ha-Joon Chang (Bad Samaritans: The Myth of Free Trade and the Secret History of Capitalism)
Practicality is a good quality in a woman. And intelligence, so far as it serves her husband.
Mia West (Bound by Blood (Sons of Britain #2))
After the debacle of the combined allied counterattack on 21/22 May, Gort had concluded that his French allies were unravelling and he therefore had no choice but to disobey direct orders from his French commanders, and the implicit orders from London. He ordered the BEF to make all speed for Dunkirk, and he asked the commander of III Corps, Lieutenant-General Sir Ronald Adam, to make arrangements for a defensive line around the beaches. It was a critical and historic decision. On the face of it, Gort was right. His decision to withdraw made the Dunkirk evacuation possible and meant that Britain could fight on, and that the war would eventually be won. But it relied on an extreme series of strokes of luck and good weather, and there is another view – because Gort’s decision also destroyed Weygand’s plan for an Anglo-French offensive.
David Boyle (Dunkirk: A Miracle of Deliverance)
The British were fatalistic; it was the origin of their cynicism, but it also made them good sharers of misfortune. ‘Oh, well, mustn’t grumble!
Paul Theroux (The Kingdom by the Sea: A Journey Around the Coast of Great Britain)
had exported an average of £13,000,000 worth of goods to Britain each year from 1835 to 1872 with no corresponding return of money; in fact, payments to people residing in Britain, whether profits to Company shareholders, dividends to railway investors or pensions to retired officials, made up a loss of £30 million a year.
Shashi Tharoor (An Era of Darkness: The British Empire in India)
In Britain, it’s kind of an old-guy thing to do,” I explain as she gleefully chalks up a cue stick. “You’re kidding! We have them in all the bars where I live.” She pantomimes a big theatrical wink. “Not that I’ve been in any, of course. Here, I’ll teach you to play pool. Though ‘snooker’ is a really cool word. Snooker!” she says, and it sounds hilarious in her accent. Who’d have thought it--me and Paige. If not BFFs, we’re certainly BFTs. Best Temporary Friends. I certainly didn’t see that coming. But we’re united, at least, in refusing to withdraw into the kind of slump that both Kendra and Kelly are indulging in. It may be unfair of me, but I think it’s selfish of them. We’re all in this together, away from home, and though the group could cope with one of the four throwing a wobbly, two is unquestionably a downer. Thank goodness, Paige teaching me pool is a lot of fun, especially as she keeps showing me how guys put their arms around girls from behind to do what I call copping a feel and she calls doing a booty rub. We laugh, a lot. We laugh so much that Paige’s mobile rings four times before we hear it, and she only just answers it before it goes to voice mail. “Hey, Ev! No, I wasn’t ignoring you--Violet and I were playing pool. She calls it snooker! Isn’t that such a great word?
Lauren Henderson (Kissing in Italian (Flirting in Italian, #2))
To thwart robbers, the poor in particular often held on to departed loved ones until the bodies had begun to putrefy and so had lost their value. Edwin Chadwick’s Report on the Sanitary Condition of the Labouring Classes of Great Britain was full of gruesome and shocking details about the practice. In some districts, he noted, it was common for families to keep a body in the front room for a week or more while waiting for putrefaction to get a good hold. It was not unusual, he said, to find maggots dropping onto the carpet and infants playing among them. The stench, not surprisingly, was powerful.
Bill Bryson (At Home: A Short History of Private Life)
During the run-up to the vote there had been an argument that leaving the EU would disproportionately disadvantage the youth. But since the millennials had it so good, the consensus around the table seemed to be that the miserable old sods had given the youngsters a challenge by dragging them out of the EU and the 27 other countries in which they could have found work. That'll teach 'em.
Steven Primrose-Smith (Route Britannia, the Journey North: A Spontaneous Bicycle Ride through Every County in Britain)
Laws that prohibit imports of foreign goods create monopolies at home and impoverish the public by condemning the country to restricted abundance, high prices, and, in Britain’s case, “the rude produce [of] its own soil.
Scott L. Montgomery (The Shape of the New: Four Big Ideas and How They Made the Modern World)
I could be accused of glamourising crime, the favorite question on all journalists’ lips whenever they ask about anyone writing about such things. The answer to that must be an emphatic ‘Yes’. We’ve come to expect our icons of the criminal world to be larger than life, better than anyone else at foiling the final capture scene. We all love a good thriller ....
Stephen Richards (Crash n Carry: The True Story of Britain's Ramraiders)
It is hard to believe, but the phrase ‘workshop of the world’ was originally coined for Britain, which today, according to Nicolas Sarkozy, the French president, has ‘no industry’. Having successfully launched the Industrial Revolution before other countries, Britain became such a dominant industrial power by the mid nineteenth century that it felt confident enough to completely liberalize its trade (see Thing 7). In 1860, it produced 20 per cent of world manufacturing output. In 1870, it accounted for 46 per cent of world trade in manufactured goods. The current Chinese share in world exports is only around 17 per cent (as of 2007), even though ‘everything’ seems to be made in China, so you can imagine the extent of British dominance then.
Ha-Joon Chang (Twenty-Three Things They Don't Tell You about Capitalism)
The coffee served in the coffeehouses wasn’t necessarily very good coffee. Because of the way coffee was taxed in Britain (by the gallon), the practice was to brew it in large batches, store it cold in barrels, and reheat it a little at a time for serving. So coffee’s appeal in Britain had less to do with being a quality beverage than with being a social lubricant. People went to coffeehouses to meet people of shared interests, gossip, read the latest journals and newspapers—a brand-new word and concept in the 1660s—and exchange information of value to their lives and business. Some took to using coffeehouses as their offices—as, most famously, at Lloyd’s Coffee House on Lombard Street, which gradually evolved into Lloyd’s insurance market.
Bill Bryson (At Home: A Short History of Private Life)
After the fall of Atlantis and Lemuria, the elements of civilization were brought by survivors to the British Isles and Scandinavia, which, along with the Arctic, make up the remnants of what had once been. Due to the devastating after-effects of the Age of Catastrophe, the inhabitants of Britain were forced to vacate their habitats and flee for safety to the eastern climes. They crossed the land-bridge between Britain and Scandinavia, and ventured into lands less affected by the great cataclysm. Southward and eastward they went, taking their customs, religious rites, technology, language, art, music and symbolism. However, because these forced emigrations occurred before the official dates posited for civilization's rise, they have been deliberately ignored. Nevertheless, in 2008, new found evidence revealed that Egypt was indeed colonized by Westerners over fifteen thousand years ago. Wall paintings dating from this remote period have been found in southern Egypt bearing a striking resemblance to those found in the caves of Lascaux, France. As Comyns Beaumont said, this artwork is Nordic in origin. It belongs to travelers from the North-West who desperately sought refuge from the cataclysm that made their own homelands uninhabitable. The races of Egypt, Libya and India knew these handsome visitors as “Men of Gold,” “God Men,” “Good Men,” “Goat Men,” and “Stag Men.” In the Bible they are cryptically referred to as “Edomites” or "Red Men." This title - attributed to early Egyptians - simply denotes sunburn. Red is the color a fair Caucasian man’s skin turns when exposed to intense equatorial heat. It is singular to find a white
Michael Tsarion (The Irish Origins of Civilization, Volume One)
judges did not force the American government to reveal all, and leave it powerless to punish those who leaked its secrets. Instead they established new rules for the conduct of public debate. They were careful not to allow absolute liberty. Private citizens can sue as easily in America as anywhere else, if writers attack them without good grounds. Poison pens are still punished, and individual reputations are still protected. If, however, a private citizen is engaged in a public debate, it is not enough for him or her to prove that what a writer says is false and defamatory. They must prove that the writer behaved ‘negligently’. The judiciary protects public debates, the Supreme Court said in 1974, because ‘under the First Amendment, there is no such thing as a false idea. However pernicious an opinion may seem, we depend for its correction not on the conscience of judges but on the competition of other ideas.’ Finally, the judges showed no regard for the feelings of politicians and other public figures. They must prove that a writer was motivated by ‘actual malice’ before they could succeed in court. The public figure must show that the writer knew that what he or she wrote was a lie, or wrote with a reckless disregard for the truth. Unlike in Britain, the burden of proof was with the accuser, not the accused.
Nick Cohen (You Can't Read This Book: Censorship in an Age of Freedom)
In a small town in southern England, another convoy of American tanks and trucks came to a brief stop in front of a row of houses, watched by a crowd of townspeople. Suddenly, a woman emerged from a house carrying bowls of strawberries and cream. She handed one to a young lieutenant named Bob Sheehan, kissed his forehead, and whispered, “Good luck. Come back safe.” Galvanized by her gesture of kindness, other townspeople disappeared into their houses and moments later brought out tea and lemonade for the hot, thirsty GIs.
Lynne Olson (Citizens of London: The Americans who Stood with Britain in its Darkest, Finest Hour)
Britain is a country that, since World War II, has been on a managed decline. The men live vicariously through their favorite soccer team, celebrating its success with “a few pints” and commiserating over its failings with “a few pints.” And the women—walking muffin tops. Yet they stride around with a terribly misplaced sense of entitlement. Even their TV shows are emblematic of their mediocre mentality. EastEnders and Coronation Street are all about fat, dumb, ugly, poor people. And there begins the vicious cycle of complacent underachievers. Maybe I’m biased because, despite being born in England, I grew up in the US. At least our equivalent TV shows are full of good-looking rich people doing big business deals and dating glamorous women. I wouldn’t mind my kids growing up wanting to be J. R. Ewing, but who the fuck wants to be a pub landlord in Essex?
John LeFevre (Straight to Hell: True Tales of Deviance, Debauchery, and Billion-Dollar Deals)
Before the time of Allan and Delair, Comyns Beaumont reviewed the work of Establishment geologists, Charles Lyell, Louis Agassiz and James Geikie. He exposed their scientific palaver for the nonsense it is, and wrote of the Ice Age theory in these words: What! No Ice Age which came and went, spreading over hundreds of thousands of years as all good geologists proclaim? No smothering ice sheets which enveloped the British Isles and much of the northern parts of the continent, changed the climate to Arctic conditions – although, strangely enough, much of our fauna and flora survived despite it – and compelled all the survivors to flee? No lengthy periods of ice alternated with warm and even sub-tropical climatic interludes? No. Nothing of the sort. There was admittedly a tremendous convulsion of nature, which had the most direful effect upon the inhabitants of Scandinavia, the British Isles, and those in Northern Asia. It resulted in giving us, it is true, bitter cold, tremendous floods, and cruel dampness. That it affected the climate in the north adversely and permanently cannot be denied. It did other things as well. But no Ice Age – (Riddle of Prehistoric Britain) It was an event…sudden, rapid, devastating, and appalling in its magnitude, and destructiveness. It was a celestial impact of an immense cometary body…It rained or distributed rocks, stones, boulder clay, till, gravel, sand, and other material over great areas, utterly obliterating certain parts, elevating others, and entirely missing some regions. It created islands, drowned others, caused immense tidal waves which swallowed up coastal lands, consumed huge spaces with electric waves, set up volcanoes, and swept away cities and largely populated districts almost in a flash
Michael Tsarion (Atlantis, Alien Visitation and Genetic Manipulation)
I remember, I walked in to the house expecting to be consoled by my father, but he yelled, ‘What, you fucking lost!’ At this stage I was still only a kid, if I lost then I was given a good kicking by him. He would suddenly turn in to King Kong and proceeded to paint the walls seven colours of shite with me!
Stephen Richards (Street Warrior: The True Story of the Legendary Malcolm Price, Britain's Hardest Man)
At that time, there was only one thing better that a good fight, and that was having a good fight and getting paid for it.
Stephen Richards (Street Warrior: The True Story of the Legendary Malcolm Price, Britain's Hardest Man)
These near death escapades didn’t put me off working in violent situations. If trouble happened then I couldn’t stop to think of what might happen. There were some good people about and my job was to protect them from trouble, I couldn’t let past experiences put me off.
Stephen Richards (Street Warrior: The True Story of the Legendary Malcolm Price, Britain's Hardest Man)
One lesson I learned from all of this, and that was a hard one, for all of the good I did people, it was never remembered. I was the one doing jail, not them. Apart from a small circle of close loyal friends, I was and am on my own.
Stephen Richards (Street Warrior: The True Story of the Legendary Malcolm Price, Britain's Hardest Man)
The anti-hero has played an important role in the history of mankind, so much so that the whole ethos of what is good and bad has become blurred.
Stephen Richards (Street Warrior: The True Story of the Legendary Malcolm Price, Britain's Hardest Man)
In 1871, much of the city of Chicago was on fire, hundreds of people died, and four square miles of the city burned to the ground. The Great Chicago Fire was one of the worst disasters in America during the nineteenth century. One Chicago resident, Horatio Spafford, was a good friend of D. L. Moody and a man who lived out his faith. Despite great personal loss in property and assets, Horatio and his wife, Anna, dedicated themselves to helping the people of Chicago who had become impoverished by the fire. After years of hard work helping others recover from their losses, the Spaffords decided to take a well-earned vacation to help Moody during one of his evangelistic crusades in Great Britain. Anna and their four daughters went on ahead while Horatio planned on joining them in a few days after tending to some unfinished business matters. One night en route, the ship that Anna and the girls were traveling on collided with another ship and sank within minutes. Anna and the girls were thrown into the black waters of the Atlantic Ocean, and only Anna survived. As hard as she tried, she could not save even one of her daughters. Anna was found unconscious, floating on a piece of wreckage. After her rescue, she sent a heartrending telegram to Horatio in Chicago that simply said, “Saved alone.” Horatio boarded the next ship to Europe to be reunited with his wife. As he was en route, the captain called Horatio to the bridge when they reached the spot where his daughters had drowned. As Horatio stood looking out into the blackness of the sea, heartbroken and no doubt with tears running down his face, with only his faith sustaining him, he penned the words to one of the greatest hymns ever written: “It Is Well with My Soul.” When peace, like a river, attendeth my way, When sorrows like sea billows roll; Whatever my lot, Thou hast taught me to say, It is well, it is well, with my soul Chorus It is well with my soul, It is well, it is well with my soul! My sin, oh, the bliss of this glorious thought! My sin, not in part, but the whole, Is nailed to the cross, and I bear it no more, Praise the Lord, praise the Lord, O my soul! How can a man who has just lost his four little girls praise the Lord? Where does a person get that kind of strength? The answer: by being deeply rooted in the Word of God. Horatio Spafford was a man of the Word, so when tragedy stuck, he could face it with strength and confidence. The centrality of God’s Word plays a critical role in the life of every believer, and this emphasis serves as the Big Idea throughout Psalms 90—150.
Warren W. Wiersbe (Be Exultant (Psalms 90-150): Praising God for His Mighty Works)
Coins are viewed as evidence of increasing levels of contact between Britain and Gaul between around 125 BC and 50 BC. They are often discovered as hoards, whole collections buried in the ground either for safekeeping or as offerings to the gods. The earliest of them were Gallo-Belgic ‘staters’ – coins minted in northern France or Belgium – and crossed the English Channel either as payment for trade goods or as gifts exchanged between chieftains. It has even been suggested by some numismatists that the Gallo-Belgic staters of mid-first-century date arrived in Britain as payment for mercenaries and other supplies sent to Gaul to support the struggle against Rome.
Weidenfeld & Nicolson (A History of Ancient Britain)
Mithras is a Persian light and warrior god adopted by the Roman army as their tutelary deity.  His name means “Friend”.  Mithras was the emissary of Ahura Mazda, the supreme power of good, who battled Ahriman, the supreme evil.  Mithras slew the divine bull to release its life-giving blood into the earth, and creatures that served Ahriman like scorpions and serpents tried to stop this happening. Mithras was often depicted with a pointed cap, and a number of reliefs show him in the act of slaying the bull.  As a solar god he was directly equated to Sol Invictus by the Romans, as can be seen from inscriptions.[469]  Twelve inscriptions to him have been found to date.[470] There were seven grades in the Mithraic mysteries, which were only open to free men.  The Mithraic cult was highly tolerant of other deities, as is evidences by depictions of other gods in the shrines.  Also as the soldier god, priesthoods were known to bring their statues to the Mithraea (temples) for protection when danger threatened. The Mithraea were usually small, and have preserved their mysteries to an extent as little writing remains from them.  A relief from Housesteads (Northumberland) shows Mithras bearing a sword and spear rising from an egg, surrounded by a hoop depicting the signs of the zodiac.  A silver amulet found at St Albans similarly depicts Mithras rising from a pile of stones.  More commonly images on altars showed him sacrificing a bull, such as at Rudchester (Northumberland), Carrawburgh (Northumberland) and the London Mithraeum.  There are now five known Mithraea in Britain, those at Caernarvon, Carrawburgh, Housesteads, London and Rudchester.  Of these all were purely military apart from the London Mithraea. 
David Rankine (The Isles of the Many Gods: An A-Z of the Pagan Gods & Goddesses of Ancient Britain Worshipped During the First Millenium Through to the Middle Ages)
We know that the infant and very small child need to feel that they can count on these powerful beings to relieve tension and alleviate fears. And we know that the child’s later ability to tolerate tension and actively deal with anxiety situations will be determined in good part by the experiences of early years. During the period of infancy, of biological helplessness, we make very few demands upon the child and do everything possible to reduce tension and satisfy all needs. Gradually, as the child develops, he acquires means of his own to deal with increasingly complex situations. The parent gradually relinquishes his function as insulator and protector. But we know that even the most independent children will need to call upon the protection of parents at times of unusual stress. And the child, even when he can do without the protecting parent in times of ordinary stress, still carries within him the image of the strong and powerful parent to reassure himself. “If a burglar came into our house, my father would kill him dead.” The protective function of the parent is so vital in early childhood that even children who are exposed to abnormal dangers may not develop acute anxiety if the parents are present. It is now well known that in war-time Britain the children who remained with their parents even during bombing attacks were able to tolerate anxiety better than the children who were separated from their parents and evacuated to protected zones. But
Selma H. Fraiberg (The Magic Years: Understanding and Handling the Problems of Early Childhood)
The fact is that, after the Easter Rising and the War of Independence, the Irishmen who’d fought in the Great War didn’t fit the new way the country imagined itself. If the British were our sworn enemies, why had two hundred thousand Irishmen gone off to fight alongside them? If our history was the struggle to escape from British oppression, what were we doing helping Britain out, fighting and dying on her behalf? The existence of these soldiers seemed to argue against this new thing called Ireland. And so, first of all, they were turned into traitors. Then, in a quite systematic way, they were forgotten.’ The boys listen palely, the lucent grass-green of the empty park shimmering around them. ‘It’s a good example of how history works,’ Howard says. ‘We tend to think of it as something solid and unchanging, appearing out of nowhere etched in stone like the Ten Commandments. But history, in the end, is only another kind of story, and stories are different from the truth. The truth is messy and chaotic and all over the place. Often it just doesn’t make sense. Stories make things make sense, but the way they do that is to leave out anything that doesn’t fit. And often that is quite a lot.
Paul Murray (Skippy Dies)
Hitler's architect and later Minister of Armaments, Albert Speer. Speer had been imprisoned for his role in the use of slave labor during the war, but though he was found guilty for a number of crimes,  and served nineteen years in prison, upon his release which was supported by such people as French president Charles DeGaulle and other high-ranking politicians, he was considered in many ways a “good German”. He had admitted his guilt at the Nuremberg War Crimes trials after the war, and acknowledged that the crimes committed under Hitler would haunt Germany forever. He wrote his memoirs in prison and spoke not only about his complicity in the use of slave labor but also his attempts to thwart some of Hitler's more barbaric plans at the end of the war. Much of the proceeds from his bestselling memoirs went to Jewish organizations, though this was not discovered until after Speer had died.
Leonard Cooper (World War 2: German Luftwaffe Stories: Eyewitness Accounts (German War, WW2, Air Force, Hitler, DDay, Battle of Britain))
The complete NIV Bible was first published in 1978. It was a completely new translation made by over a hundred scholars working directly from the best available Hebrew, Aramaic and Greek texts. The translators came from the United States, Great Britain, Canada, Australia and New Zealand, giving the translation an international scope. They were from many denominations and churches—including Anglican, Assemblies of God, Baptist, Brethren, Christian Reformed, Church of Christ, Evangelical Covenant, Evangelical Free, Lutheran, Mennonite, Methodist, Nazarene, Presbyterian, Wesleyan and others. This breadth of denominational and theological perspective helped to safeguard the translation from sectarian bias. For these reasons, and by the grace of God, the NIV has gained a wide readership in all parts of the English-speaking world. The work of translating the Bible is never finished. As good as they are, English translations must be regularly updated so that they will continue to communicate accurately the meaning of God’s Word. Updates are needed in order to reflect the latest developments in our understanding of the biblical world and its languages and to keep pace with changes in English usage. Recognizing, then, that the NIV would retain its ability to communicate God’s Word accurately only if it were regularly updated, the original translators established The Committee on Bible Translation (CBT). The committee is a self-perpetuating group of biblical scholars charged with keeping abreast of advances in biblical scholarship and changes in English and issuing periodic updates to the NIV. CBT is an independent, self-governing body and has sole responsibility for the NIV text. The committee mirrors the original group of translators in its diverse international and denominational makeup and in its unifying commitment to the Bible as God’s inspired Word.
Anonymous (Holy Bible, NIV)
The slaves were arranged in families according to their nearest relationship, and sold in lots at so much a head. The competition was tolerably brisk, and several lots—old men, babies, and all—sold very well. The scene, of course, was most painful, humiliating and degrading. I became quite affected myself, and was obliged to hurry away, for fear of showing what I felt.” These were, precisely, the sights of Charleston that welcomed Bunch and began to change him. The ambitious young consul who had referred so casually to the “nigger question” now found that wherever he walked, and, indeed, wherever he looked, the weight of slavery bore down on him. Bunch had seen plenty of inhumanity and suffering in his life, from the plantations of Peru to the gang-ridden slums of Five Points in New York City. He had seen servants abused countless times in countless ways. But he had never seen or heard anything quite like what he saw and heard in this city to which he had brought his wife and where he hoped to have his children. In this new position with new responsibilities, and in this place, the young consul quickly grew bitter, even desperate. His initial comments on “the civility of these good people” soon gave way to a much darker view.
Christopher Dickey (Our Man in Charleston: Britain's Secret Agent in the Civil War South)
Thanks to time differentials and good telephone service, the world money market, unlike stock exchanges, race tracks, and gambling casinos, practically never closes. London opens an hour after the Continent (or did until February 1968, when Britain adopted Continental time), New York five (now six) hours after that, San Francisco three hours after that, and then Tokyo gets under way about the time San Francisco closes. Only a need for sleep or a lack of money need halt the operations of a really hopelessly addicted plunger anywhere.
John Brooks (Business Adventures: Twelve Classic Tales from the World of Wall Street)
Sharpe had no thought of deserting now, for now he was about to fight. If there was any one good reason to join the army, it was to fight. Not to hurry up and do nothing, but to fight the King’s enemies, and this enemy had been shocked by the awful violence of the close-range volley and now they stared in horror as the redcoats screamed and ran towards them. The 33rd, released from the tight discipline of the ranks, charged eagerly. There was loot ahead. Loot and food and stunned men to slaughter and there were few men in the 33rd who did not like a good fight. Not many had joined the ranks out of patriotism; instead, like Sharpe, they had taken the King’s shilling because hunger or desperation had forced them into uniform, but they were still good soldiers. They came from the gutters of Britain where a man survived by savagery rather than by cleverness. They were brawlers and bastards, alley-fighters with nothing to lose but tuppence a day.
Bernard Cornwell (Sharpe's Tiger (Sharpe, #1))
Does it ever bother him, I wonder, that all that effort – all those thousands of hours of merciless self-punishment – has brought him so little material reward? This is, after all, an age in which Britain counts its sporting millionaires by the score. ‘No,’ he says firmly. ‘Once you get big rewards, you get nastiness. This is a wonderful sport, with good sport in it. If someone fell in a race, you’d check they were all right, though you wouldn’t stop unless you absolutely had to – just as, if I fell, I wouldn’t want someone to lose their race because of me. But once there’s money, there’s trouble.
Richard Askwith (Feet in the Clouds: A Tale of Fell-running and Obsession)
Daniel Galvin Sr., OBE Daniel Galvin Sr., OBE, is one of Britain’s biggest names in hairdressing. His specialization in hair coloring has revolutionized the field over the past four decades, and he continues to be in high demand by the rich and famous worldwide. For his contributions to the industry, he was honored with an OBE in 2006. I had the pleasure of knowing Diana and doing her hair color for ten years. She was truly a breath of fresh air each time she came into the salon. She was always happy, always full of life, and full of grace. We have a private room available in our salon, but Diana never requested to use it. She was happy to sit next to other clients and often chatted away merrily with them and staff members. In our business, confidentiality is so important. Anything she discussed with me will never go any further. She used to tell me off for my suntan--telling me it wasn’t good for me and to be careful. Her last words to me before that tragic weekend in France were “Daniel, I don’t believe it, but for the first time I’m browner than you!” She was incredibly down-to-earth, unaffected, and perfectly charming on all occasions. She was a tremendous asset to the monarchy and to this country. There was an amazing aura that glowed around her--she was as beautiful on the inside as she was on the outside. It was always an honor to be of service to her.
Larry King (The People's Princess: Cherished Memories of Diana, Princess of Wales, from Those Who Knew Her Best)
number later put it, ‘quids in’. ‘I was getting taxis about,’ he recalled. ‘I mean, a pound would buy you a bloody good night out. You could probably have eight or nine pints of beer and twenty fags and a couple of tanners for the juke box.
Dominic Sandbrook (Never Had It So Good: A History of Britain from Suez to the Beatles)
In 1777 the rebels tried to round up the rest of Johnson’s former tenants, but they too escaped to Canada. For the remainder of the Revolution Sir John Johnson and his Scotsmen, together with their Iroquois allies, engaged in protracted and violent warfare with the American rebels along the northern frontier.18 Several other groups of recent immigrants remained loyal to the Crown. Although many Dutch and Germans supported the Revolution, those who maintained their own language and culture did not. Similarly, the Huguenots who settled in New Rochelle, the only French immigrants who continued to speak their native tongue, supported the British. William Nelson explains why: Taking all the groups and factions, sects, classes, and inhabitants of regions that seem to have been Tory, they have but one thing in common: they represented conscious minorities, people who felt weak and threatened. . . . Almost all the Loyalists were, in one way or another, more afraid of America than they were of Britain. Almost all of them had interests that they felt needed protection from an American majority. Being fairly certain that they would be in a permanent minority (as Quakers or oligarchs or frontiersmen or Dutchmen) they could not find much comfort in a theory of government . . . based on the “common good” if the common good was to be defined by a numerical majority.
Ray Raphael (A People's History of the American Revolution: How Common People Shaped the Fight for Independence)
Our deeds still travel with us from afar, And what we have been makes us what we are. GEORGE ELIOT, 1819—80
Nicholas Rhea (Constable by the Sea)
Nicholas Rhea (Constable by the Sea)
In half a century, 1717–67, 10,000 serious criminals were dumped on Maryland alone. They arrived chained in groups of ninety or more, looking and smelling like nothing on earth. Marginal planters regarded them as a good buy, especially if they had skills. They went into heavy labor—farming, digging, shipbuilding, the main Baltimore ironworks, for instance. In 1755 in Baltimore, one adult male worker in ten was a convict from Britain.165 They were much more troublesome than non-criminal indentured labor, always complaining of abuses and demanding ‘rights.’ People hated and feared them. Many were alcoholics or suicidal. Others had missing ears and fingers or gruesome scars. Some did well—one ex-thief qualified as a doctor and practiced successfully in Baltimore, attracting what he called ‘bisness a nuf for 2.’ But there were much talked-about horror-stories—one convict went mad in 1751 and attacked his master’s children with an axe; another cut off his hand rather than work. From Virginia, William Byrd II wrote loftily to an English friend: ‘I wish you would be so kind as to hang all your felons at home.’166 There were public demands that a head-tax be imposed on each convict landed or that purchasers be forced to post bonds for their good behavior. But the British authorities would never have allowed this. As a result of the convict influx we hear for the first time in America widespread complaints that crime was increasing and that standards of behavior had deteriorated. All this was blamed on Britain.
Paul Johnson (A History of the American People)
As he joined in, Lloyd felt this was the beating heart of Britain, here in this whitewashed chapel. The people around him were poorly dressed and ill-educated, and they lived lives of unending hard work, the men winning the coal underground, the women raising the next generation of miners. But they had strong backs and sharp minds, and all on their own they had created a culture that made life worth living. They gained hope from nonconformist Christianity and left-wing politics, they found joy in rugby football and male voice choirs, and they were bonded together by generosity in good times and solidarity in bad. This was what he would be fighting for, these people, this town. And if he had to give his life for them, it would be well spent.
Ken Follett (Winter of the World (The Century Trilogy #2))
Ben Macintyre (Rogue Heroes: The History of the SAS, Britain's Secret Special Forces Unit That Sabotaged the Nazis and Changed the Nature of War)
On the other hand, there are a number of cases where economic growth did not produce better governance, but where, to the contrary, it was good governance that was responsible for growth. Consider South Korea and Nigeria. In 1954, following the Korean War, South Korea’s per capita GDP was lower than that of Nigeria, which was to win its independence from Britain in 1960. Over the following fifty years, Nigeria took in more than $300 billion in oil revenues, and yet its per capita income declined in the years between 1975 and 1995. In contrast, South Korea grew at rates ranging from 7 to 9 percent per year over this same period, to the point that it became the world’s twelfth-largest economy by the time of the Asian financial crisis in 1997. The reason for this difference in performance is almost entirely attributable to the far superior government that presided over South Korea compared to Nigeria.
Francis Fukuyama (The Origins of Political Order: From Prehuman Times to the French Revolution)
Ultimately we all have to decide for ourselves what constitutes failure, but the world is quite eager to give you a set of criteria, if you let it. So I think it fair to say that by any conventional measure, a mere seven years after my graduation day, I had failed on an epic scale. An exceptionally short-lived marriage had imploded, and I was job- less, a lone parent, and as poor as it is possible to be in modern Britain without being homeless. The fears that my parents had had for me, and that I had had for myself, had both come to pass, and by every usual standard I was the biggest failure I knew.
J.K. Rowling (Very Good Lives: The Fringe Benefits of Failure and the Importance of Imagination)
The far right in Britain are using social media to recruit while the left use it to berate people for liking problematic music videos. I think a problem for the left is their essentialism: they see people as either good or bad, and the role of activism focuses on energising the good ones.
Frankie Boyle (The Future of British Politics)
I know it is said in missionary meetings that we conquered India to raise the level of the Indians. That is cant. We conquered India as an outlet for the goods of Britain. We conquered India by the sword, and by the sword we shall hold it.
William Joynson-Hicks
Little Britain may truly be called the heart's core of the city; the stronghold of true John Bullism. It is a fragment of London as it was in its better days, with its antiquated folks and fashions. Here flourish in great preservation many of the holiday games and customs of yore. The inhabitants most religiously eat pancakes on Shrove Tuesday, hot-cross-buns on Good Friday, and roast goose at Michaelmas; they send love-letters on Valentine's Day, burn the pope on the fifth of November, and kiss all the girls under the mistletoe at Christmas. Roast
Washington Irving (Little Britain)
And Helen Keller, writing in 1911 to a suffragist in England: Our democracy is but a name. We vote? What does that mean? It means that we choose between two bodies of real, though not avowed, autocrats. We choose between Tweedledum and Tweedledee…. You ask for votes for women. What good can votes do when ten-elevenths of the land of Great Britain belongs to 200,000 and only one-eleventh to the rest of the 40,000,000? Have your men with their millions of votes freed themselves from this injustice?
Howard Zinn (A People's History of the United States)
this was the beating heart of Britain, here in this whitewashed chapel. The people around him were poorly dressed and ill-educated, and they lived lives of unending hard work, the men winning the coal underground, the women raising the next generation of miners. But they had strong backs and sharp minds, and all on their own they had created a culture that made life worth living. They gained hope from nonconformist Christianity and left-wing politics, they found joy in rugby football and male voice choirs, and they were bonded together by generosity in good times and solidarity in bad. This was what he would be fighting for, these people, this town. And if he had to give his life for them, it would be well spent.
Ken Follett (Winter of the World (The Century Trilogy #2))