Iain found Paul lurking in the comments on this thing about the March 26 protests. You may be wrongfooted early on by what I’ll happily concede is a convincing impression of a reasonable human being. Beware.
I went on the big march, yet I experienced no violence of any kind, although my friend Tony was really pleased to turn up back at the flat with a policeman’s helmet (no, the head wasn’t inside it). That was Grosvenor Square, the famous ‘riot’ of 1968. The media tropes haven’t changed since then, have they? It’s always “Peaceful march ruined by mindless thugs”, followed by some new dollop of oppressive legislation to keep the Mail headline writers happy. Of course, no-one then remembers what the protest was about. One wonders, how many of those masked men kicking at windows were the famous undercover police, or fifth columnists as they used to be known. You can’t tell when they’re masked. It’s really quite alarming, what you’re not allowed to do, say or even think nowadays, how oppressive the authoritarian state has become. While radioactive iodine rains down on Glasgow, a present from @#$%ushima, even George Monbiot now thinks nuclear power is a jolly good idea. But we’re not going to have a say in the matter, are we? – we’re all well-boiled little frogs now.
But thanks to his tinfoil hat, Paul has been thinking all kinds of shit, and no motherfucker has kicked his door in and taken him away to any of them government Psi-control Centres yet. Not everyone has been so lucky, however…
“I knew something was very wrong the moment George Monbiot wandered through the back door one day, still wearing his pyjamas, with glassy eyes, flyaway hair and a wet chin.
“‘George?’ I said. ‘You look frightful, old boy. What’s the matter?’
“Staring blankly over my head into the middle distance, George spoke with a voice as flat as my kitchen table: ‘citizen. I have come to tell you about the miracle of nuclear power. Nuclear power is efficient, clean and 100% safe. Nuclear power. This message was brought to you by BNFL plc. Power to you, power to the government. Good day, fellow citizen, I have enjoyed our conversation.’ Then he simply faded into thin air. Gone.
“Well, I thought to myself, this is all very strange. So I decided to post something on the internet about it. But of course, I couldn’t get on the internet. Apparently, you need an internet connection to do that… Yes, convenient, isn’t it? So then I thought, I know! I’ll call the Times news desk, see if they’ll be interested in taking up the story. But I didn’t have a telephone, you see. Or a working line.
“Okay. Not a problem. I’ll ask to borrow a neighbour’s. I was outside before I remembered that I live alone on a tiny, windswept island in the middle of the Atlantic, with no boat or, indeed, any form of transportation.
“I can tell you that sinister forces were at work that day.”
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