To the Victors the Spoils

November 15, 2015

News today from the EU – that around £1.2Bn has been set aside to help Africa and the migrant crisis. Some sobering context:

£1.2Bn represents about £1 per African

A deal is under consideration whereby EU nations accept Africans into Europe based on the Africans’ skills and qualifications

The £1.2BN represents no real extra money

Sweden is taking money spent presently as aid to Africa

And setting it aside to settle Africans (with skills?) in Sweden

Other nations are merely juggling monies already earmarked

As African Aid or Aid to other nations

A commentator described Africans with skills and qualifications as being ‘The Fairy Godmothers of Africa’

The commentator said there are so few of them in Africa

He said that absorbing them into Europe would leave Africa helpless

In effect – my own words - A ghetto for the poor and uneducated

The commentator said it was not Good News but Bad News

So; it’s window-dressing. Our elected and non-elected national representatives collectively have fudged it. Very much like other pledges/fudges and shows of concern and goodwill from them to the destitute have been.

More News Today: Immigrants from Hims, a large city of Syria, are being detained in jails in Hungary, sometimes for up to one year, before they are being deported. They have been found guilty under an Hungarian Law passed hastily in September this year which criminalises entry into Hungary other than by designated geographical places on its borders.

Hims, even I know this, is in a dangerous zone of Syria; dangerous enough to warrant refugee status for any migrant in Europe seeking political asylum

The Hims and other criminals entered Hungary at an unauthorised place.  Hungary unilaterally has declared its neighbouring nations to the south and east Romania, Serbia and Croatia as safe nations for these criminals to be exported into.

Hungary in doing so has acted contrary to EU rules which do not include these nations as safe places for deportation into.

Romania, Serbia and Croatia have each severally refused to allow in the criminals as deported migrants.

So the criminals stack up in detention in Hungary for the time being.

Anyone reading this who is an EU citizen: doesn’t it make you feel ashamed and polluted to contemplate?  Isn’t there more we ordinary people can do to help?

Our representatives are still looking after themselves (and in our names, us) first.

A celebrity TV chef, called Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall here in the UK, during these past two weeks has been in earnest on a mission to get British people to take unnecessary waste, in particular, but not only, wasted food, seriously.

Some statistics (from memory)

Seven tonnes of wearable clothing are binned every ten minutes in UK

25% of all edible food is thrown away

One UK KFC branch threw away 2 industrial bins of edible chicken daily

UK KFC raises, kills, cooks, yearly 1.5 million birds unnecessarily

Morrison’s – a supermarket chain – as a rule refused 25% of parsnips grown for especially for it

They were ploughed back but perfectly edible

They were blemished, misshapen, short, but nonetheless wholesome

UK homes each throw out an average of £15 per week of edible food

(None of the atrocities raised by Hugh about ignorance and resistance in many ordinary Britons to recycling true waste has been raised or included in my review here)

Of course refugees need protection, safety, a home. They need food too but these are the priorities for them.  I am using Britons’ attitudes to food as an indicator which says to me: does it say to you?


British people – and it is likely those of all EU nations – have a wide amount of slack between themselves and destitution. Our attitudes to food and waste and the quantities wasted cannot say anything else about us

The reason for wasting good food was universally given as ensuring health and avoiding illness – even regarding food which for some years had been being robbed from store waste bins in the nights and fed to hungry needy people by charities. Even regarding food in domestic refrigerators still safe but looking a little tired. Even regarding a quarter of all fruit bought retail in the UK.

Do you say we are a bit too squeamish? Do you say we are a bit hung up about hygiene and health?

I have a friend who when in India in the 1970s witnessed an egg fall from a person’s shopping basket and break open in the dust of the street, and a skirmish breaking out. The beggar who got the egg first bent down swiftly and with a cupped hand scooped it from the dust and into his mouth in a single long swinging action of his arm.

No hesitation. No qualms. Nourishment

God forbid it should come to this for us in Britain and the EU!  The stark contrast however speaks for itself.

Can we not find it in our hearts just to share a little bit more of what we lavish upon ourselves daily, weekly, and without giving a thought to our massive opulence and good fortune?

I was caught in high winds and rain at a bus stop the other day. It was evening and dark and cold.  I waited around an hour getting wet and slightly dispirited before I got a ride home.  While I was wet and waiting it flashed upon me that in refugee camps scattered over the back end of nowhere and exposed to all elements was daily, hourly, minute by minute going through a hell I was not even near experiencing thousands of guys and girls and their kids and parents just like me – human – but of the wrong sort.