500,000 AMERICAN DEAD FROM COVID-19.

This week America reached a milestone when it recorded 500,000 dead from Covid-19, more it is said than the sum total of American dead during World War One, World War Two and the Vietnam War put together.

It is indeed tragic that anyone should have died from Covid-19, although expressed as a percentage of population it is fairly similar to the figures from Great Britain although ours are considerably less as we have a much smaller population.

I believe there is a perception that the British people are always “going on about the war” and to some extent it is true, take for example our recent victory in the battle to leave the EU and the jubilation when Brexit was finally declared, causing bunting to be hung up with street parties and celebrations continuing late into the night.

This has brought me back to more facts about “the wars” and don’t blame me, for it wasn’t me that first brought up the comparison between the numbers of war dead and those from Covid-19.

Whilst 500,000 is a substantial number of dead from three wars certainly by modern terms, I have to say it pales into insignificance compared to the British dead of 1,270,000 and we didn’t even take part in the Vietnam War, a fact I have to admit I am jolly glad about as I would have been just the right age to go had we had conscription.

Like many people in Great Britain my Grandfather took part in World War One, my Father took part in World War Two and should there have been a war in which we were involved I would have looked like a bit of a cad had I not offered myself for the slaughter.

One doesn’t want to keep rubbing salt into the wound but as I said earlier I didn’t start it, so here are a few more facts which justify the British obsession with “the war.”

WW1 Started; July 1914. America entered the war: April 1917. WW2 Ended; Nov 1918.

WW2 Started; Sept 1939. America entered the war; Dec 1941. WW2 Ended; Sept 1945.

Now I can see a pattern emerging here which would explain why during World War Two there was a certain resentment of the American GI’s with their flashy uniforms, candy, stockings, chewing gum and money from some of our troops who as can be seen from the chart above had been hard at it for some considerable time, which caused the saying; “over sexed, over paid and over here.”

As grateful as we were for America’s belated entry into the war, we were also delighted with the might of American industry for the tanks, guns, ships and other paraphernalia required to fight a war which they supplied, although I imagine Americans have never come across the expression, “mates rates” as it took us until December 2006 before we finally managed to make the final payment for the purchase of these items.

I am hoping that this post will educate my readers from foreign climes and hopefully go some way to explain why the British, “keep going on about the war!”

Wanted: war stories from heroes of WWII - The Jewish Chronicle

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DONALD TRUMP’S BOOKS.

I was somewhat surprised at the number of books Mr Trump has written or had written for him, especially as I seem to recollect that during his time as President he used to sign everything with a large crayon, a legacy perhaps from school when some children were given a crayon for fear they may poke themselves in the eye should they be given a sharp pencil.

It was quite interesting to see the titles and imagine what may be available in the books; take for example HOW TO GET RICH which may have the advice, inherit vast wealth from your father.

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Or THINK BIG AND KICK ASS, MAKE IT HAPPEN IN BUSINESS AND LIFE. Advice perhaps as to how to become The President of the United States of America by bullying others out of the way.

SURVIVING AT THE TOP, Quite clearly the book for any President who wishes to remain in office, one perhaps Mr Trump omitted to read himself.

Trump: Surviving at the Top - Wikipedia

Should one have made a complete pigs ear of being President and having lost the election the thought suddenly dawns that inciting a riot may change one’s fortunes, I suggest; TIME TO GET TOUGH.

When even incitement to riot changes nothing, never say die for we have THE ART OF THE COMEBACK, there’s bound to be something useful in a book like that.

Lastly I found, THE WAY TO THE TOP which I feel may also have useful information for those who find themselves on the way down, for they do say, “be nice to those you meet on the way up, for you may meet them again when you are on the way down.”

What a man of foresight Mr Trump has been, for he has written all these books without ever knowing that sometime in the future they may be the font of all knowledge for so many situations in which he finds himself.

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MR TRUMP’S TAX RETURNS

I see there is a bit of a hoo-ha concerning Mr Trumps Tax Returns as it seems he will have to declare them to all and sundry and by all accounts it is about time.

There will obviously be much more to add to this story as and when the full story is revealed but one wonders if it will expose Mr Trump as a completely incompetent business man who has not made a profit for some years, or a devious criminal who has been defrauding The Revenue for many a year or a combination of the two.

It is a fascinating story especially when compared to the last ruthless mobster with a similar story who the FBI had been after for some considerable time with no success, even with the full force of Elliot Ness and the untouchables chasing after him.

Al Capone led his illegal bootlegging, gambling and prostitution empire with impunity from the law but it was the US Treasury Department that brought about his downfall, could we find ourselves with a case of history repeating itself when Mr Trumps Tax Returns are finally revealed.

As they used to say on the wireless in the old days, “tune in next week for the next exciting instalment!”

Al Capone | American Experience | Official Site | PBS
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HARRY AND MEGAN STRIPPED OF PATRONAGES.

Rather sadly Harry and Megan have confirmed their decision to permanently step down as working royals which means they have been stripped of their patronages which they are entitled to whilst being full time members of the Royal Family.

As a former Army officer Harry was eager to hold onto his formal links with the Armed Forces but as they have chosen to no longer remain in “The Firm” he will lose his roles as Captain General of the Royal Marines, Honorary Air Force Commandant of the Royal Air Force Base Honington, and Honorary Commodore-in-Chief of the Royal Naval Commands’ Small Ships and Diving.

Also lost are his patronage of the Rugby Football League, and his role as president of the Queen’s Commonwealth Trust (QCT), while Meghan is no longer the trust’s vice-president and has lost her patronages of the prestigious Royal National Theatre and the Association of Commonwealth Universities.

Since Harry and Meghan quit as senior working royals in March 2020 and chose to earn their own money in the US, they have signed deals with Spotify and Netflix, estimated to be worth more than £100 million although Lord knows what they can possibly offer for that sort of money, I fear it may result in some sort of cheap freak show.

It all started so well and I had high hopes they would make a success of their relationship and the introduction of the first mixed race person to join the Royal Family but sadly it was not to be.

They should have been perfect at the job, he was born into the job and knew exactly what was required from the role, while she became his partner and during the blossoming of their relationship as an actor she was effectively taking part in an extended audition, she must have realised what the part entailed, how hard can it be to play a pampered Princess?

Too hard it seems, for it certainly feels as if it was she who instigated their move to the US and their final permanent departure from The Royal Family, whilst able to pull off her part in the TV drama “Suits” it seems her part as Princess in “The Firm” was too much for her.

Never the less I wish them well and hope they have a long and happy time living abroad in the Americas.

Image result for harry and meghan

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PRESIDENT BIDEN’S LUCKY ESCAPE.

I have of late been taking more interest in American Politics since Mr Trump lost the election and his incitement to riot speech and all the other rather bizarre events of recent times.

Yesterday I saw that President Biden was going to Milwaukee to take part in a CNN “town hall” which seems to be an American way of saying he is going to be interviewed by a CNN reporter in a theatre, the interviewer was to be Anderson Cooper.

Now, I’m a lover of trivia and having looked up Anderson Cooper I can reveal that his father was Wyatt Emory Cooper who was an author, screenwriter and actor, his mother however was none other than Gloria Vanderbilt who amongst many things was a artist, author, actress, fashion designer, heiress and socialite, although I imagine my American readers may be aware of these facts already.

During the course of the interview which he seemed to have made a decent fist of with answers for all the questions asked, except the one about about the former President, to which his answer was, “I am tired of talking about Donald Trump,” which seems quite the right answer to me.

I was watching the news in the UK as President Biden was leaving for the event so I was delighted to see him out and about the next day and in good health, my concern for his well-being was sparked by my recollection of the last time an American President visited a theatre on 14th April 1865 which ended in tears.

On this occasion the dastardly John Wilkes Booth crept into the box where Abraham Lincoln was watching a farce called Our American Cousin which was written by English dramatist Tom Taylor, which caused the President much amusement, that is up to the point where Booth took out his derringer pistol and shot the poor President in the back of the head.

The President died the next day and a Nation mourned, an event I was very glad to see that wasn’t repeated with the current President, not the least of which because it would have caused the regurgitation of the joke which asks the wife of the deceased President; “beside that Mrs Lincoln, how was the play?”

Image result for abraham lincoln assassination

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FACEBOOK FRIEND REQUEST.

I occasionally receive friend requests from young ladies on Facebook, most of whom might best be described as not perhaps the most demure of the female species but none the less I’m sure they must have a warm heart as they seem to be reaching out to befriend what they must assume is a lonely old man who would be only too delighted to make contact with them.

According to her profile this latest request comes from a young lady who lives in London in the Untied Kingdom and is from Windsor Colorado, which I believe is in the Americas, sadly I have very few other details of what I assume must be a hectic and fulfilling life as she seems too busy to find time to elaborate on her Facebook page which merely shows the one photo which I have attached below.

I was wondering on what basis we would form this friendship, as she appears to be a visitor to our shores would I perhaps help her with the subtle nuances expressed by other young people in this country who choose to speak with a London Multicultural Accent, which has the rather peculiar way of pronouncing any word ending in ‘ility.’

When I was at school I learnt a smattering of French but in my day we never had a class where they taught us how to understand American, so I imagine there would be some difficulty with verbal communication.

She has however made the effort to send the friend request, so I imagine she must think there is something to be gained from our mutual friendship, although I’m struggling to see what it may be.

I see from her photo that she is squatting in front of a garage door, although she looks as if she has been caught short and is about to relieve herself, I have to admit though I have no idea why she is making the strange hand gestures which I believe are the American version of our V sign.

Looking at the photo I was wondering that perhaps after she has relieved herself she might open the garage door to reveal some wonderful classic cars, a subject dear to my heart about which we might have a long and meaningful discussion but who knows?

Having reviewed all the evidence I am afraid that I am going to have to refuse this young ladies request for friendship as I can see no evidence for a long lasting relationship between the two of us and I do hope she will not be too disappointed.

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MR DONALD TRUMP’S IMPEACHMENT.

I was at first not going to write anything about the events leading up to and the conclusion of Mr Donald Trump’s impeachment, mostly because I was so dumbfounded by it all I was almost lost for words, however I feel it was such a bizarre situation that one must comment.

Where to start, Lord knows; Mr Trump looses the election by some 8 million votes but will not accept that he has lost even though no court in the land has found evidence of any wrong doing to back up his claim that the election was stolen.

It really isn’t worth my while spending too long on this as it’s such a farcical situation but briefly, after he looses the election he is seen on television inciting a riot with a view to stop the official declaration of the win for Joe Biden which ended with the storming of the Capitol Building in Washington resulting in the deaths of five people.

Whilst still President he is Impeached but due to the Republicans delaying when he comes to trial he is no longer President which gives them the excuse to find him not guilty, which leaves me wondering had he actually taken a gun and killed five people himself while being President, would they still have found him not guilty.

It seems there was evidence that Mr Trump knew of the events going on at the Capitol Building after his speech which incited the riot and in fact was contacted by many Congressmen asking him to stop the riot but he chose not to act, leaving all those in the building open to the possibility that they too may have joined the list of those killed on the day.

To sum up, Mr Trump incites a riot with the purpose of stopping the election result being officially declared, the mob storm the Capitol Building during which five people die and knowing that the mob had declared their intention to kill members of the Congress he chose to do nothing to stop them and then knowing all these facts all but seven members of the Republican Party vote not guilty, resulting in Mr Trump not being impeached.

The last person who tried something like this in Great Britain was Guy Fawkes who in 1606 attempted to blow up the British Parliament but luckily enough he and three others failed and were arrested and tried for high treason which resulted in them all being sentenced to be hung, drawn and quartered.

I will leave you to draw your own conclusions as to whether you can draw any similarities between Mr Trump’s attempt at high treason and that of Guy Fawkes.

Image result for guy fawkes

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A MAN ENTERED A BAR.

I have just been told that one of my poems, A Man Entered a Bar, has been selected for inclusion in the anthology The Short of it which is due to be published in the next few months.

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CHILDBIRTH IN THE 60’S.

I was recently on Facebook and came across a site called Totally Sixties 1960 to 1969 where someone had asked the question; Did men play a big part in childbirth of their partner in 60s like nowadays ?

As someone who has never had any children I am unable to speak from experience but will have to rely on anecdotal evidence from friends and 1960’s sit coms and a vague recollection of the “Doctor in charge films.”

From what I can gather it was not permitted in those days for a man to take any part in the birthing process and indeed was prohibited from entering wherever the birthing may have been taking place.

Unlike todays modern version where the woman giving birth may be found immersed in a birthing pool with his or her partner who would be passing the time during labour by doing a few lengths of the pool to keep themselves amused whilst waiting for the big event; somewhat different from the 1960’s version where the partner would have only been a man and expected to be a married man at that!

I have to say I think I would have been more at home with the more old fashioned way of doing things where the wife would have been taken to hospital and the man would have decamped to the nearest hostelry or even returned home to his “local” with his “mates” to help support him in this difficult and stressful time.

I’m led to believe that these things can take an inordinately long time so the chaps would have had to pace themselves and probably started with a few rounds of beer and depending on the culinary skills of the landlord’s wife there may have been the option of some potato flavoured crisps or a pork pie to sustain them, however should they be lucky enough to be holed up in an up-market pub they may have experienced the delights of a ham and mustard sandwich or even something as exotic as a ploughman’s lunch.

All things being equal some hours later the landlord would have received a call from the hospital with the good news that, “it’s a boy,” which would have triggered the opening of Champagne and the handing out of cigars and a well earned rest for the exhausted men.

Once the happy father had established the visiting hours for the maternity ward for the following day they would be able to settle in for some serious celebrations with a “lock in” until the early hours, perhaps even persuading the landlord’s wife to pop out and fetch a fish supper for the group.

I know when describing these events it does sound like an exhausting experience for these poor men especially compared to his wife who would by now be tucked up in a warm bed in the maternity ward basking in the glow of motherhood but that’s how men sacrificed themselves for the love of a good woman in the 60’s.

Image result for old maternity ward

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HARRY AND EDNA ON THE WIRELESS.

Some time ago I had the privilege to appear on The Harry and Edna Show on the Wireless, they just sent me a link to a podcast of the show which I was delighted to receive and prompted me to answer the question; “Why Lord Joe Wells?”

During the course of the show I was asked why I have the title Lord Joe Wells and as they had forgotten or we went off on another topic before I regaled the story which may ring true with others who have been adopted.

I was adopted when I was one year old and had wonderful parents but one always wonders; where do I come from and will one day The Marquis of Bath turn up declaring that he is my birth father whilst showing me round the family estate with the promise, “Berkshire, my boy; one day it will be yours!”

Friends of mine at the time joined in the fun and as I used to live in Woodford would often call me Lord Wells of Woodford, which as I am a fairly honest man and not one for deceit necessitated the purchase of a Title from the wartime fort in the Thames estuary, otherwise known as The Principality of Sealand, as Harry guessed correctly.

The Harry and Edna show usually plays vintage forties music and discusses matters relating to the vintage scene, however the podcast omits the music but should you wish to listen to their show complete with music, which I would thoroughly recommend you will easily find them with an interweb search.

For those of you interested in purchasing any of my books you can find them down the right hand side of this page, if you are viewing on a computer or if you fiddle about if you are young and using a telephone, failing that here is a link to Amazon where you will find them all very reasonably priced. https://www.amazon.co.uk/Mr-Joe-Wells/e/B06XKWFQHT/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1?qid=1546632800&sr=8-1

Lastly for your edification and delight, the link to the Harry and Edna podcast https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j5P8tjEVb5U

Radio | Harry and Edna on the Wireless

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