THE LAST DITCH An Englishman returned after twenty years abroad blogs about liberty in Britain
Of verbals and planted evidence
A sustained sneer in The Observer

A recipe for a poor nation

BBC News - Lord Smith: Environment Agency 'bound by Treasury rules'.


  • One rich free-range nation, reared on fertile terrain
  • Millions of productive citizens
  • Thousands of intellectuals, incubated in ivory towers well away from reality
  • Complacency
  • Belief in the virtue of the state apparatus (common name: credulity)
  • Problems (foraged ingredients, to be found anywhere)
  • Demands for government to solve all problems
  • Left or right-wing political pretexts (according to taste)


A big stick


  1. Add complacency and credulity to your rich nation
  2. Mix your intellectuals with your demands that government solves all problems
  3. Beat your productive citizens with big stick to extract juices
  4. Use juices to coat the problems, observing (but ignoring) the increase in risky behaviours
  5. Wait for problems to re-occur
  6. Heat on a high flame of opposition criticism of inadequate government action
  7. Turn up heat as politicians in power blame their officials
  8. Bring to the boil as officials blame the government for not employing enough officials
  9. Marinade the situation in productive citizen-juice and coat with a thick crusting of more officials
  10. Season with political pretext of choice


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Tom, that tastes awful, it's missing something vital. Might I suggest.

Sprinkle with politicians and princes in welly boots. Don't worry about cleaning their hands first, there is no chance they would have handled a sandbag.

Force feed it to the populace every six hours with a tablespoon of castor oil.

Announce-nothing can be done to improve the recipe without more taxes.


No, I didn't. I was on an excellent cookery course at the weekend - - and that stimulated the idea. I highly recommend the school but hasten to add that this particular recipe is of the social democrat world's devising, not the chefs there.


Hi Tom

I guess you didn't get this from one of the endless BBC cooking shows?

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