Monday 24 February 2020


Fact is unstable by its very nature. 
Narouz once said to me that he loved the desert because there 'the wind blew out one’s footsteps like candle-flames'. 
So it seems to me does reality. How then can we hunt for the truth?
Lawrence Durrell

For many of these bourgeois socialists, the election was unserious. They should have campaigned in winnable marginals. Rather they tried to unseat Boris Johnson in Uxbridge. They don’t care about controlling the country, as the writer Nick Cohen says; perhaps they have just enough self-awareness to be frightened of it.
Tanya Gold


  1. ‘P. Marlowe doesn’t give a damn who is president; neither do I, because I know he will be a politician.’

    Raymond Chandler (1888–1959)

  2. The prophetic Raymond Chandler
    Chandler’s California is a cultural desert stretching along the western edge of a continental wasteland
    Chilton Williamson, Jr.

    Raymond Chandler’s America remains recognizable, even familiar, in 2020, in nearly all ways but one: the extent to which American government has advanced from a political-financial racket to an ideological-financial one. The HUAC hearings were the earliest sign of a shift that lapsed into abeyance between Sen. McCarthy’s hearings in the early Fifties, and the mid-Sixties when it returned — for good, it seems — with the civil-rights movement merging with the Marxist, student one. Chandler did not live to see this historic development that neither he nor P. Marlowe would have failed to recognize as the new American racket that it was then — and still is 60 years on.

    The earlier system of organized crime and cheap graft that intrudes into the novels has been superseded by an equally organized political and semi-criminal system, grounded in the revolutionary ideology of ‘the Resistance’ that has been waging war against Donald Trump during the three years since the President’s election. Chandler’s two-bit crooks and shakedown artists, operators like Mendy Menendez of Bay City and Randy Starr of Las Vegas, have been replaced by self-righteous liars and legal and political manipulators, typified by James Comey and Adam Schiff, who dominate the news 24 hours a day.

    Raymond Chandler was a bit of a prophet, in his way. One wonders whether he saw this coming.

    This article is in The Spectator’s February 2020 US edition.

    1. Yes - with Mrs Thatcher and Reagan - both of whom I detested at the time - one always felt no doubt that they were honest, idealistic and had substance - but they were very exceptional and they too were consummate politicians.

    2. 5 presidents had never been elected to public office before becoming president: Zachary Taylor, Ulysses S. Grant, Herbert Hoover, Dwight D. Eisenhower, and Donald Trump.

    3. Only DT was new to public service. Hoover had been a 'Cabinet member' as Secretary of Commerce and taken charge of Russian famine relief for the US government. The others were generals. I think Washington had not been elected to anything before he became president. How I wish he had been hanged.

  3. 'had never been elected to public office before becoming president'