Please don’t hang a flag on your house, my dears

Simple people are almost as bad as people who want you to think they’re simple.

Remember civilisation, where you didn’t marry your cousin(s), where you could work with people with whom you didn’t agree about very much, where meeting someone new was not deadly dull (oh God, X t-shirt/bumper-sticker, so Y cultural beliefs, Z food prohibitions)?

At a school gig yesterday a teacher inquired, with a fanatical gleam in her eye, “But are you English or Austrian?”

No one used to behave like that in Britain, and with the exception, “Well actually I came out of a Cornflakes packet” generally did the trick.

But now -thanks to dear Mr Blair- Scotland is a Nation, and now Boris is SE England’s Chosen One, and Colin Davies is said to be preparing to market himself as the Liverpool Liberator.

It’s all so dreadfully reminiscent of the post-dictatorial Balkanisation (via asymmetric ego-federalism) of Spain, and that’s been a massive success, hasn’t it.

Is there any semantic difference between a by-election and a bye-election? As in: got-by (Dave) vs goodbye (Ed)?

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