The week began with the very pleasant news that our Latin dance coach had their first born on Monday, which traditionally is Confucius’ Birthday, born in 551 BC. Sam has graduated with first class honour in Chinese from the Chinese University of Hong Kong and he wishes his son would grow up with some of the virtue and wisdom of Confucius. We are both very happy for them.
On Tuesday, our lunch group resumed with four a table, taking up three tables and I had a lot to drink because I had a few hours before the next meeting. It seems that I have modified Parkinson’s Principle from “Work expands so as to fill the time in between for its completion” to “Drinking continues so as to fill the time in between for the next meeting.” I have learnt that it takes longer to get rid of the alcohol in the system the older one gets; and actually it doesn’t really take a genius to realize that.
Wednesday had long been billed as the date for the first great debate between Trump and Biden; but it turned out to be such great disappointment. As one commentator had openly wondered how low could Trump or his country stoop. What followed was even more dramatic, but not unexpected by anyone. Trump and his wife got Covid-19; and TIME had tracked down the movement of the POTUS against the time of his tweets to suggest that he would probably have got it when he had the debate with Biden. Since then, many people all over the world have questioned whether Trump really had it or had simply faked it. Glenn Kirschner, a former US army prosecutor, has opened questioned the less than transparent statements issued by some doctors, referring to the 28,000 recorded and proven lies that he had made since he has assumed office.
All at once, no one cares whether Trump had a real infection. No one is able to find out the truth, but nearly everyone believes that the prospect of Trump recovering from whatever he said he was suffering from is close to 100 percent and that his chance of winning the November election even higher. Such is the state of the world we are living in – no one cares about the truth; and no one cares about long cherished virtues such as honesty and honour. If one casts one’s mind back to May 1940 in the height of Hitler’s military advances in Europe and his offer to UK for peace before Churchill agreed to be Prime Minister, one might be able to draw some parallels there. No world power had the guts to face Hitler openly and to stop him in his tracks. France was falling or had fallen; and the Chamberlain government had been known to be pro-appeasement. Boris Johnson wrote in “The Churchill Factor” published in 2014 that it was Churchill who convinced the cabinet to fight on, and it was Churchill who ordered the evacuation from Dunkirk in May and June and the attack of the French fleet at Mers-el-Kebir in July. Johnson’s book has a subtitle, “How one man made history” which suggested that it was Churchill with his single-minded determination who had stopped Hitler from taking over the world. I question why Johnson now doesn’t see it fit to oppose Trump in perpetrating his lies to the world.
Yes, with every indication that Trump would likely take White House for four more years and a less than prepared opposition in the country to confront and challenge him for real, the world is going to be under the menace of the world’s greatest liar for another four years. Kirschner has already pointed out that Trump doesn’t pay enough taxes and is facing multi-million or billions in unpayable debts as well as law suits that would easily put him behind bars the moment he is thrown out of the Oval Office, which is why he would try everything he can while he can to stay in power and wreck the maximum havoc possible. Already, he is going full steam ahead to appoint a replacement judge that would speak for him and thus provide added insurance should he lose out in the ballot. But what are the Americans or the world doing, except standing on the sideline and watch, or placing bets on whether Trump would recover and when.
It does seem that the only thing that an ordinary man can do is to eat, sleep and stay safe, to have sufficient exercises to keep the body and mind fit to face whatever shock and surprises in store for him and to live a happier life.
In the meantime, I wish all of you out there a safe and happy week ahead.