Enough about me, (yesterday’s entry) what is happening in the wider world.? Sadly most of it is bad news. Yesterday confirmation came that all four of the miners trapped in the goldmine in South Wales have died. This was one of the small private coal mines that is still running. As I understand it, it has a high-quality coal seam, worth mining on a small scale and the seven miners who worked it were prepared to do so in order to make a living. A very sad conclusion to their initiative.
The next horror story concerns the young couple who were taking a luxury holiday on a beach in Kenya. They were attacked, the husband was shot and the wife abducted. To date there is no clear evidence as to who is responsible for this atrocity but the likelihood is that it was Somalian bandits who drove the 30 miles across the sea from Somalia by speedboat. No doubt, we will hear shortly about ransom demands. The most awful aspect of this particular horror story is that I do not believe that these two people were targeted specifically. It was just bad luck that they were in the wrong place at the wrong time.
On an even wider scale the uprisings in the Middle East continue. In Libya, Gaddafi and a few loyal followers – mainly foreign mercenaries apparently- seem to be trapped in two small corners of the country. – the capital Tripoli having fallen to the rebels some days ago. One of the sons has already fled and I suspect Gaddafi will do this same in the very near future. There is no going back now as the new council representing the new regime has been officially recognised by Great Britain and France with the prime ministers of both countries having made a short visit there. The biggest problem for the new regime is that under Gaddafi there was no proper civil service set up, so this new democratic state will have to start some form of administration virtually from scratch. Whether it goes the Islamic way with Shari Law prevailing over all others or whether it becomes a true democracy with which the Western world can deal with comfortably, I think, remains in the lap of the gods.
With the dictators in Egypt and Syria having been toppled, I suspect the next big insurrection, will be in Bahrain, even though the earlier attempts have been brutally crushed
The economy remains as fragile as ever with inflation rising to almost 5% and working people everywhere beginning to feel the pinch from the current squeeze. Despite this we face a nationwide strike in a number of the public services in November if the union members follow the recommendation of their committees. This has to be sheer lunacy, as I said in a previous entry.
On the wider front still I suppose the good news is that the threat of Greece defaulting on its debt repayments has diminished pro tem with Germany and France vowing to save the euro, then, on the other hand, there are those who say that Greece could be thrown out of the Euro market without having too. deleterious effect on that currency. Who knows? Every three economists asked you will get four different answers!
So much for the state of affairs at home and overseas. Not a happy picture. Having said that it is still possible that we could all come through unscathed but it will be touch and go. As ever I remain the eternal optimist.
To demonstrate my optimism I have included a video on futuristic technology in the home and office. I apologise to the family and friends of the couple in Kenya and the miners in South Wales. I do hope that none of you think I’m being flippant, I feel deeply for your grief.
Click here for the PowerPoint slides. Wait a moment or two for them to download and then click on the fourth icon from the left in the tray at the bottom of the picture which should say ‘Slideshow’.