Well I’ve been dragged kicking and screaming into the new decade, the second tenth or first fifth of the second millennium, or is it really the third millennium? I mean if you think about it in practical sense, 0 to 999 was millennium one, 1000 to 1999 was millennium two and so surely 2000 onwards is millennium three? Argh its far too early in the year, day and time cycle to be asking such difficult questions. What alarmed me more than anything in that little rant was the amount of times I misspelt millennium trying to figure out what its correct spelling should be.
So what is the attraction of 2010, Or more over what is the hesitation that I feel entering into a whole new decade of the 21st century? To be totally honest I am really not sure. I think it is merely a culmination of things that leave uncertainty in the back of my mind that leave me wondering if 2010 is going to be the year that we are all hoping it should be.
The state of the economy is probably the most pressing issue that we all face as a nation. I think that there are those among us that couldn’t really give a damn about whether the system bucks all the trends and the recovery collapses under our feet. They are well off enough and secure enough to weather any kind of financial crisis, but I know by the number of people that I speak to that believe that this is an international plot to usher in a single monetary system worldwide. Rather alarmingly last year during many of the G8, G20, G111 and G whatever else they could think of we heard the likes of the Brazilian Prime Minister calling for a single currency. Yes it would be something that in the long term has to happen, but for me, that moment in time is the real mark of the end of time as we know it.
I am left puzzled, sitting in the worst winter weather in 30 years for the UK, wondering how on earth we can be talking about global warming. True there is talk that globally the extremes of weather are impacted by the degree of impact that man is having on our planet, and I’d tend to agree with that to a certain degree, but I have a sneaky suspicion that mother nature knows a whole lot more about the earth’s climatic temperament that any scientist or world leader professes to know. I also tend to think that there are scaremongers among our esteemed elected politicians that would seize on any opportunity to worry the world into submission. No I am no scientist, but I for one am not bought off by the sudden rush to say that the world is suffering irreparable damage as a result of our carbon foot print on this world. It cannot be one person, one country, one continent that will make any difference whatsoever to the state of the carbon footprint if all the others carry on spilling out toxic fumes.
But I would pause for a moment to point out that once upon a time our planet was apparently a fiery ball of poisonous gasses, some far more toxic and destructive than any we see produced by man today. Over a period of millennia, yes admittedly a very long time, this came to change, the climate settled down and the world repaired itself into the wonderful oyster that we know and treasure today. So I would challenge anyone that suggests that nature is incapable of dealing with what is thrown at it, and our world is on a one way collision course with destruction. Nay, I think we need to be a lot more honest and look not at what man produces through manufacturing, but more over what man produces through reproduction.
I am more inclined to believe that we are heading for a famine of global significance, not because nature is going to strike us out with a curved ball, but because the population of mankind is spiralling out of control. Our world is a finite resource, and we can only plant and plough so much of the land. Of that crop only so much will eventually be used for food product, and only so much of that remains fresh and good to eat for so long. With man’s concentration on producing fuel crops today, I have to wonder how on earth the third world and countries that rely on purchasing surplus food stock that will no longer be available as we press more and more fuel from seed, are to survive. It is my honest belief the it is in mankind itself and the rate at which we multiply that our doomsday and head-on collision with nature exists.
Personally I look at the situation in Pakistan and Afghanistan as a far more serious and unstable situation than anyone leads us to believe. For so many years we have watched the middle east, and the Israeli and Palestinian situation with so much concern that it would lead to a melting pot of Armageddon, that we have failed to notice and pay attention to other areas of key and critical concern that have come unstuck right under our noses. There is so much conflict and unease within the region as India, Pakistan and Afghanistan frequently rattle their sabres. The problem for us is that two of these nations have nuclear weapons, and I wouldn’t hesitate to believe that either would happily press the button if the situation deteriorated any further. Now with Al Qaeda in the mix, one has to wonder how long it will be before someone totally looses the plot and starts something I don’t think the world will stand back from. I mean we are already committing huge resources to the region to try keep a feeble and untenable peace. At last the world has woken up to the risk that was growing on our doorstep right up till we suddenly realised how dangerous this region has become.
2010 is the year of Africa’s entry into the halls of history as it hosts the very first African World Cup in football. Such a prestigious event has never before been contemplated in such a war torn and unstable continent, but it seems at last, one of the continents favourite competitions is coming to a city near you. Is it any wonder then that the organisers and the officials responsible for the event are sitting on their fingers with worry about the impact of a world of sporting fans descending on a country often regarded as the most violent place on the planet? The attack on the Togo team in Angola just reiterated the dangers of the African continent, and cut deep into the nervous system of the FIFA governing body as the kick off date looms near. True enough, terrorism knocks on ever door regardless of where or when an event is being held. I remember there was a time when the Sydney Olympic Games were considered to be under a real and credible threat from some act of terrorism. I do however worry not about the danger imposed from a terrorist atrocity, as I believe that the African nations have some of the finest intelligence operations in the world, nor do I worry about the fans being given the short end of the straw and falling prey to villains on the street. I worry about the millions of people that are going to be forcibly removed from areas of public interest and herded into places of vulnerability and hostility. We are all familiar with Xenocide and the crimes against humanity of the South African people. That I feel is far more worrying and dastardly than any effects felt by fans or the public enjoying the hype of the world cup.
With a general election looming on the horizon in the UK, I am left as so very many of the British public at a complete loss of who really to vote for. No one party has come out fighting, no one leader has risen to the challenge and come out with rhetoric that is exciting and motivating. I really fail to understand British politics. It is like a lame man’s game. The quieter and more boring you are the more certain you are of getting into a position of power. I have lived in countries where men fight and die for a chance to campaign in a general election. I’ve visited countries where during a national election the whole country becomes infected by politics. I’ve watched a nation get caught up in the excitement and passion of a leader who was inspiring, clean cut, clever and steadfast in his desire to become leader. And then I come to my chosen nation of residence and wonder what the hell to do when I am called to make a vote come polling day. I wonder sometimes if I shouldn’t run as a complete outsider and shake up the status quo of Westminster. Someone needs to do it. David Cameron’s latest posters came out with the slogan on it, “We can’t carry on like this!” Too bloody right. Someone stick a fire cracker up his backside and hopefully we’ll actually get a leader with some fire in his belly.
Yes, I guess while other people have looked on 2010 as a year of new hope and opportunity, I have had a somewhat clouded entry into the year thus far. It is with some feeling of trepidation and caution that I carry on into the year, and I’ll most certainly be going with my eyes open and my ears close to the ground, as I have a feeling in my bones, that 2010 is not what we are all hoping it will be. May I well be wrong, and it would give me no more pleasure to sit down in December in hindsight and look back and say, “What on earth was I on about,” but at the same time, better prepared than blissfully ignorant in my opinion. Happy New year to you all and I hope that many blessings follow us all.