Watching pundits on the television news last night discussing the great debate, the one between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, I heard an American analyst point out arguments Donald Trump could have used against Hillary Clinton but failed to do so because, the analyst said, "he has the attention span of a fruit fly". Well, that's one way to put it, I suppose. It is rather frightening to think that someone with the "attention span of a fruit fly" could perhaps be POTUS before the year is out!
It is to be hoped that our politicians have a slightly longer attention span. And that they have realistic hopes and not just dreams. I wonder! Faced with arguments that some countries might veto the UK's negations with Europe, our Theresa said, “The 27 will sign up to a deal with us. We will be negotiating with them. And … we will be ambitious in what we want to see for the UK. A good deal for the UK can also be a good deal for the other member states because I believe in good trading relations and I have said I want the UK to be a global leader in free trade.” Fingers crossed for all of us!
I continue to have doubts about all politicians at the moment. I watch them mould their policies to bring them in line with what the opinion polls say the people expect and want, when it is fairly obvious that much of what the people "expect and want" is moulded by the tabloid press. What happened to politicians having policy ideas and, more importantly, principles which they stand by and which they argue to persuade the people that that should be what they "expect and want"? Oh, yes, of course: they have members of their own party say they are unelectable and bring motions of no confidence against them!
Meanwhile, life goes on. Yesterday the Italian conversation classes began again. We all swopped news: who has just retired, who has a new grandchild (guess who that was), who has almost, but not quite, won the European Orienteering Championship, pensioners division, who has been on holiday in faraway and interesting places and the like. One of our number tried to bring up the referendum and Brexit but our teacher vetoed that topic on the grounds that it would depress her too much. She limited her comments to telling us how relieved she is still to have her Italian passport and expressing the view that if we end up having to pay for visas to visit Europe, then that is the EU's way of "punishing" the UK. It's a theory.
So there we are, back to politics again, one way or another!