A reasonable length road ride heading south of Reading for the first time in ages, including going through a once-again-open-to-traffic Sonning.
All I could see was the same old same old: pot-holes that had been filled (badly) are now large and dangerous holes again. Pot-holes that weren’t quite big enough to merit mending according to whatever criteria they apply are now major hazards which will cost far more to repair. Litter is everywhere and all too visible now there’s no vegetation around, so that just – it seems – encourages everyone to throw more litter. At some point it’ll be cleared up – at far greater cost than tackling it early. Etc.
All you seem to read about in the news is the same old same old too – climate change manifestations; the US and Israel; India and Pakistan and disputed territory; corrupt policemen; corrupt politicians; Japan and China and disputed territory; government policies that will hit the poorest hardest, and so on and so on. One that particularly struck me today was a UN report that the wealth gap in Britain is the worst in the West.
That whole ‘trickle down’ approach was discredited in the Thatcher/Reagan years but it won’t go away. It beggars belief. It’s not a Tory product; it’s a product of our political classes – Tories, Labour, Lib-Dem and anyone else who’s ever had a say.
It beggars belief, too, that we just take it in the same way as we take the rest of it. We are mugs, moaning to ourselves and our mates and that’s about it; at most perhaps contriving some ‘gallows humour’ out of it. Satire might change things; gallows humour just ameliorates.
I’m as much of a mug as anyone else. I know all too well that I’ve droned on about most of this stuff before and done precisely nothing to change any of it. The question is how to make 2013 any different in any way, however small.