A couple of days of sun and my mental faculties are all to pieces - it's always the way. I am, as it were, sitting on the stoop, watching the tumbleweed blow by across the wide empty space between my ears. I'm so far gone I can't even vote. Having acquired a postal voting form for the forthcoming EU thing, I proceeded to make such a complete horlicks of it that I had to throw it away. Whoops. I console myself that the EU Parliament is less a democratic assembly than a very expensive collection of rubber stamps. In fact I'm probably doing my democratic duty by not voting for any of them. So there.
As it happened, democracy was the theme of (sadly) the last of Clive James's stint on Radio 4's A Point Of View - the usual procession of dunces and dullards will resume next week. It was a good finale - full text here - but it struck me that, by both Popper's and Camus's definitions, we can scarcely be said to be living in a democracy just now. Our government can't be changed 'at the people's whim'. At present it's the people's overwhelming will - never mind whim - to have an election and change the government, but we can be sure this will never be allowed to happen till the very last minute, as the incumbents know they will lose power when it does. Also, I have an awful feeling that Brown - like Blair before him - is firmly convinced that actually he does know everything, and if people would only listen, rid themselves of 'false consciousness' and stop putting obstacles in his way, this fact would become apparent to all, and all 'problems' could then be 'solved'. The instincts of both Blair and Brown are deeply undemocratic. Both men have seen themselves as heads of state rather than servants of the state - but at least Blair had the sense to remember the formalities. He would never been arrogant and insensitive enough to have the Queen left out of the D-Day anniversary celebrations. He'd have been there alongside her, jutting out his chin in his brave, grown-up, serious look - but at least she'd have been there too.
Never mind - walking on the downs yesterday I saw four species of Blue, including the Adonis, which is in the picture.
And now I must go and stare into the middle distance for the rest of the day...