Friday, 27 April 2018

The Tory Leadership Stakes

I was never one of those who joined in with the praise for Amber Rudd in the wake of a decent performance in one of the debates during the referendum campaign. On the back of this and following the elevation of Theresa May, she was likewise elevated to her present position. It's never really been clear why. It was even less clear why she was spoken of in some circles as a potential leader. Her performance over the last few days have presumably put paid to such talk, which is something to be thankful for. Amber Rudd would make a disastrous PM. She is nearly as cardboard as Theresa May. Yes, cardboard. Just as lacking in any dynamism as wood but flimsier.

Not that I believe that she should now resign from the Home Office. She is not the first to struggle to manage that clumsy behemoth and won't be the last. For Diane Abbott, her opposite number to criticise her is hilarious. The Windrush debacle has been just that, a debacle. But it is no more than that and the Government has held up its hands, apologised and promised to put matters right. Contrast that with the attitude of Marxist Labour on a range of issues starting at anti-Semitism and misogyny right up to their serial inability to get figures right when asked about them. Imagine these numpties in power actually trying to implement their teenage policies of wishful thinking and fantasy economics.

There is a good chance you know that we are going to be talking about the next leader a great deal in the next week or two. It's not just that Brexit and the non issue of Northern Ireland and the customs union are wreaking havoc on Westminster and the governmental ranks. It's also the fact that, this time next week, we will likely be waking up to a Tory bloodbath in the local elections. It's entirely possibly that they will be wiped out completely in London - not a single Conservative held council. The picture may not be as bad across the country and that might be what saves the Prime Minister. But it shouldn't.

Tory MPs have been saying now for months that May could be the time when they may have to move against the PM and force her out. She then had a better few weeks as the issues she faced played to her strengths. But then Windrush and now Brexit are once again ruthlessly exposing her weaknesses. And they are numerous.

A good leader would have hit back hard against the rumour mill and the mutterings about the customs  union nonsense. The people voted for Brexit, she should have said. Staying in a customs union makes no sense either from the standpoint of leaving Europe or even if you are a disappointed remainer who nevertheless accepts the will of the people however reluctantly. Not only would we not be able to negotiate our own trade deals we would have them dictated for us by the EU without any say in the matter. It would be a disaster for the country when those advocating it misrepresent it as a way of protecting jobs. In reality it would be a surefire way to export them to Europe.

Mrs May should be saying that this is an issue so fundamental that she would not hesitate to make it a  confidence motion. In other words vote it down and we are in election territory. In truth we may need one anyway to settle the matter.

If that happens then the Conservative Party will need a new leader and one who will stand up for Britain and tell the EU to get stuffed if necessary. On issue after issue they are trying it on and Mrs May is running up the white flag. It has to stop.

There are a good few ministers now clearly on manoeuvres as they sense that a leadership election is now a distinct possibility. Michael Gove has been on a campaign footing for months and should probably be given Amber Rudd's job if only to bury his chances. Michael Gove should not be the next leader. The public hates him. Gavin Williamson has likewise been campaigning for months but his chances are nil. He is laughable. Boris is also stepping up his campaign but is likely no longer a viable choice. Who does that leave? It leaves Jacob Rees-Mogg. Whatever he says he is also very much interested in the top job. Why else would he utter the very un-Mogg word 'cretinous' this week?  Not that he was wrong.

This blog once backed Boris for the leadership. That seems like a long time ago now. I now back Jacob Rees-Mogg, or JRM as we should perhaps start referring to him as. The Moggster is the man who has the star power that Boris once used to enjoy and who manages to combine it with gravitas and intelligence. He is like our anti-Trump, a serious politician for serious times, unashamedly posh, unashamedly old fashioned and yet with all of the right credentials but no track record to hold against him. And he's a proper Tory. After months of hesitation I now believe that he is the man to take over and to lead us out of the EU, if necessary by walking out on the negotiations. That has to happen sooner rather than later. Jacob Rees-Mogg would scare the life out of the EU and put us back on the front foot. But more than that he would scare the hell out of Marxist Labour. In a week's time the Conservatives are expecting a disaster. It might lead to sunlit uplands.

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Thursday, 26 April 2018

A New Special Relationship?

It says a great deal about the comical confidence and lack of self knowledge of Donald Trump that he actually brushed some 'dandruff' off the lapel of Emmanuel Macron on Tuesday in front of the world press. The man with a hair 'style' that his own daughter regards as ridiculous and which must require industrial amounts of hairspray responsible for a decent percentage of America's trade deficit simply does not seem to understand how such moments make him look.

Here's a hint for you, Mr Trump, it makes you look like a crass, dumb, uncouth vulgarian.

Yet the commentators have labelled this Trump's power play. It isn't. It is rather more like the grooming practices of an orang-utan. How Macron must have been shuddering inside. Were it not for the fact that he is a smallish chap and that, within a few yards, there were presumably several heavily armed secret service personnel, he must have been tempted to punch Trump on the chin. Trump is not a brave man and so would have collapsed on to the floor like a quivering jelly. Now that would have been worth seeing.

Of course Trump's notion of machismo is his pathetic handshake wars in which he subjects whoever is unfortunate enough to have to shake hands with him to one of his 'firm' shakes to show how large his penis is - but maybe we should ask Stormy Daniels about that, she could provide a photofit. As Eddie Izzard used to say, we always politely put up with this kind of crap but we really shouldn't.

Macron had to put up with the handshake, in which they essentially ended up holding hands so reluctant were they to be the first one to let go. Quite what letting go first proves is a mystery. Would the world watch and say aha! But he had to put up with it because he was there to persuade Trump to be less, well, Trump. Good luck with that.

Macron however is not a man who seems to be plagued by self doubt and he headed off to Washington to talk to the big orange dummy and seek to persuade and cajole on issues like Iran in particular. Yet Trump doesn't really know why he believes what he believes on Iran and so persuading him, particularly in a French accent, would be a challenge. Furthermore Trump usually agrees with the last person he spoke to and so unless Macron is intent on having him on a permanently open line his attempt to forge a new special relationship is doomed to failure.

Furthermore Trump is never shy about promising whatever suits his purposes to whoever before shamelessly stiffing them if need be. Just ask the people he has fired in his first year. Just ask the women he betrays. Just ask his lawyer and fixer Michael Cohen. The man would have no second thoughts about abandoning members of his own family if it saved his own skin and indeed may well have to do so in the coming months. Telling world leaders one thing to their face and then reversing that later is not something he would worry about. Except Putin of course.

Typically the whole bromance between Trump and Macron this week has had the same people who were criticising Theresa May for being too close to Trump saying that she has lost the battle to be in that special relationship. Frankly this is probably for the best. Trump is heading for trouble in his diplomatic relations, may well have started a war in the next few months and could easily have to resign over Russia or the ramifications of what Michael Cohen reveals in the coming months. He will almost certainly not stand for a second term. Cosying up to Trump is dangerous and likely counterproductive. And anyway you end up having to have your hand shaken by him and your wardrobe criticised.

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Wednesday, 25 April 2018

Shania Twain and the Politics of Anger & Disenchantment

The Twitter mob was out in force at the weekend, brandishing their virtual pitchforks and tar and feathers because someone had opined about something in a way that they found unacceptable. Shania Twain, the country singer who went mainstream a few years ago with songs like That Don't Impress Me Much, Man! I Feel Like a Woman and the lovely You're Still the One, is on tour to promote her latest album. And so she gave an interview to that great moral arbiter The Guardian and thus her troubles started.

Because she said - and prepare yourself to be shocked - that she would have voted for, shock horror, Donald Trump. Quick! form a pile of her old albums and burn them. How do you burn streamed music though? 

Now there are a few things to observe here. First, Shania Twain is Canadian and so couldn't and didn't vote in the election anyway. Second, she is perfectly entitled to vote for, theoretically vote for or otherwise support anyone she likes. Her reasons for doing so, that Donald Trump is honest, are ridiculous. But perhaps she is not a keen follower of politics. Perhaps she just liked the rhetoric of the orange moron and that convinced her. But she didn't vote anyway and so why do we care? This is democracy. It is a sorry indictment of American politics that Trump was able to win by lying egregiously throughout the campaign and that he is getting away with doing so endlessly now he is in power but that is a failing of his political opponents who failed to expose him. The reason Trump is president now is not that he was a fine and truth telling candidate it's that Hillary Clinton was a lousy candidate and couldn't beat him. Oh and the FBI didn't help either. It's unlikely that the Russians made much difference.

Trump is an appalling man, a pathological liar, an ignoramus, a fantasist, lazy, irrational and given to tantrums. But he has a gift for branding himself and of honing a message that appeals to substantial section of the public. He has also emerged at a time when there is anger and bitterness amongst large sections of the white working class who have been left behind by the new globalised economy.

Democracy is in crisis in the West at the moment but instead of wondering why the masses are revolting against the consensus the Guardianistas prefer to condemn and censor. It's as if they think that silencing people will somehow stop them holding opinions they don't like. They want safe spaces to prevent them hearing what ordinary people think and understanding why they are so angry and rebellious.

The same is true of Brexit and of the general attitude of the self appointed elite of Europe who do their best to ignore or actively subvert the will of the people and their anger and dismay at the direction of politics and this obsession towards a homogenous European future that nobody has ever voted for. Brexit happened for the same reason that Donald Trump has happened. Britain has always been a profoundly Euro sceptic country, always resistant to the federalist urge. Why it was a surprise when we voted the way we did says a lot for the state of denial that exists in large parts of the establishment.

But if there is anger now think what it will be like if the remainers succeed in preventing our leaving properly by keeping us in a customs union or perhaps even preventing us leaving at all as is clearly their intent.

Shania Twain apologised in the end, probably at the behest of her publicists, in much the same way that some companies have felt the need to apologise for advertising in the Daily Mail or otherwise enraging the bien pensants. She shouldn't have apologised. She should actually have told them all to get stuffed or words to that effect. The same is true of those of us who voted for Brexit. We voted the way we did and the polls suggest that opinions have not changed. If there were to be another referendum there is a strong likelihood that we would get the same result. Even if it were to be reversed it would be by a very small majority. But would that give the remainers pause? Would Europe rein in its vaunting ambition? No. They would see it as a green light, a mandate to take us in a direction we do not want. That, or a variation of it, is why there is anger and rebellion across Europe and the western world. The more the establishment ignore it, the worse it is going to get. If they succeed in diluting Brexit or stopping it then this country could easily explode, the Tory party could fracture and we could end up with a Marxist government. These are the stakes we are all facing. Democracy is messy. But it is being made messier by elitists only hearing what they want to hear and silencing those who disagree with them or who hold opinions they don't like.

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Tuesday, 24 April 2018

It's Time to Campaign for Brexit Again

There are many reasons why Leave won the referendum nearly two years ago. Part of the reason was a simple desire to kick the establishment in their conceited, arrogant, complacent, entitled behinds. Immigration was clearly another big reason. Sovereignty another. Leave also had the best messaging, the clearest message and the best communicators.

Since the referendum though, in part because of the shock they have felt, it has been remainers doing the best job of campaigning, even though, ostensibly, they have nothing left to campaign for. But, as we all know, the EU is not good at accepting the results of popular votes when it doesn't like those results. They have thus done their level best to side with the useful idiots on this side of the channel, make the most of the political chaos and self inflicted weakness of the Prime Minister and keep the pressure on. They are still not making the case for the EU being something worth staying part of in its own right, still not campaigning for us to change our minds because of the nobility of the cause they all seem so fervently to believe in. But they are doing a great job of causing as much chaos and loathing within government. The British people are however made of sterner stuff. There is no shift in public sentiment except away from the EU. We don't take kindly to attempts to bully us, particularly not using the island of Ireland to do so.

Their latest ruse is all of this talk of us staying in the customs union, or a customs union. This is a patent nonsense and the Government is once again making a hash of answering them.

This is not just to do with our wanting to negotiate proper free trading deals with countries around the world including many who came here last week for the Commonwealth conference. This is once again to do with sovereignty and control, something that was a key pledge by those campaigning for us to leave and so any attempt to portray staying in a customs union as honouring that vote is mendacious. One of the reasons we are leaving, the main reason why I voted to leave, is because we want to govern ourselves, to negotiate in our best interests, to do as we see fit vis a vis the rest of the world. We cannot do that if we are part of a protectionist customs union. It is hard enough when we are part of 28 competing interests within the EU. But outside that but still governed by rules we have no means of changing would be an absurdity. Yet nobody is making that argument, nobody is pointing out the bleeding obvious, or at least not loudly and insistently enough.

The remainers are trying to bounce us into something that this country rejected. They want to keep us in a customs union that is for the benefit of the rest of the continent now and just raises prices for us all. This is an easy argument to make, one that is easy to understand. Name and shame the liars and quislings attempting this anti democratic piece of chicanery. And expose their true intent, which is to keep us in the EU, because the customs union is just the start of their campaign to do just that. Either that or, like the leader of the opposition and most of his front bench, they don't really understand it.

There are many people angling to be the next leader of the Conservative Party and many of them are leavers. It is they who should now take on this battle and start campaigning again for the Brexit the country voted for but that may be seized from us unless we start hitting back. Boris Johnson and Michael Gove were the main campaigners for Brexit and should start campaigning again, perhaps alongside their cabinet colleague Esther McVey. This ought to represent no problem because they would just be espousing what is Government policy. They should take this opportunity now to start hitting back against this growing campaign to ignore the referendum and the very clear instructions of the British people. Leave means leave, not a diluted version that will please the EU Commission.

There are also those outside government, people like Priti Patel and of course Jacob Rees-Mogg ought to man the barricades too. Rees-Mogg is clearly on manoeuvres for the leadership notwithstanding his denials. He is also the favourite of the wider Conservative membership. Now is his opportunity. Start arguing and indeed campaigning for the Brexit we all voted for and in which he believes. It might even win him the leadership.

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Monday, 23 April 2018

Trump and the Fat Leader - Nobel Peace Prize or Armageddon?

Are we really only 4 months into 2018? Because it feels like we are under the influence of an encroaching black hole. For physicists and cosmologists, by the way, I am entirely aware that this makes no sense. But you take my point. After all it seems like only yesterday since we were all facing armageddon because of the war of words between Trump and North Korea, calling each other names and sending in the fleet, firing off missiles and threatening more nuclear testing.

Then, suddenly, everything changed and suddenly we are talking about the Nobel Peace Prize. And if Trump pulls this off then he would entirely deserve such an accolade, much more so than other recent recipients, not least the farcical award of the prize to the likes of Barack Obama for making a nice speech or the EU, for something - I'm not entirely sure what and neither was the decision making committee.

The problem is that North Korea is likely playing games and sees the man they until recently, and not without cause, were calling a dotard, as a sap they can take advantage of. Trump thinks he's a genius. He is reportedly doing no preparation for this meeting that could well be his Nixon going to China moment and is intent on winging it. He is always convinced that his interpersonal skills will win the day. The man clearly has charisma. But he is also an ill-educated nest of personality disorders and terrifying insecurities. He is susceptible to flattery but also likely to fly into a raging tantrum worthy of a toddler if things do not go his way. This is how he operates in the world and has all of his life. He has learnt that what he cannot get by lying, bragging and charm he can get by furious rages and bullying. If he still fails, which of course he does constantly, he simply spins it as a triumph and then lies about it. He occasionally threatens to sue anyone who tells the truth about his failures. Or he simply calls it fake news.

This is the man being sent in to negotiate a deal of a lifetime. The man who got someone else to write The Art of the Deal for him and who has no idea how to do a deal without doing any of the above, is going into a one on one meeting with the leader of a country that has threatened and blustered its way to the negotiating deal with the most powerful man in the world and has thus far made no commitments whatsoever other than a temporary suspension of testing it shouldn't have been conducting anyway. They also, out of the blue, attended the Winter Olympics in South Korea, a propaganda coup that seems to have had the world's media eating out of their hands.

What has caused this sudden thawing of a relations that had hitherto been in permafrost for 60 years? It's hard to tell, but it is likely that North Korea have come to the realisation that they were playing with fire and that Trump is unstable enough and resistant to conventional advice so that he could very well attack them. For his part Trump has claimed that all of his own bluster and name calling has been part of a subtle psychological strategy designed to bring the DPRK to the negotiating table. This may even be partially true. It is certainly been his modus operandi, or what passes for one, in his business career. But such a strategy only really works if you don't talk about it. D'oh!

The US was very recently, until just before the Winter Olympics rapprochement, seriously considering a limited punishment attack, the so called bloody nose, that all of the advice told them could easily lead to all out war and hundreds of thousands of deaths. This was prevented by wiser heads like the now departed HR McMaster and Defense Secretary, Jim Mattis, counselling against it. But what if the advice is wrong and not as wise as we thought? What if all of those goose stepping soldiers are just a front? What if the reports of soldiers being sent out to forage for food are true? What if the North cannot afford to properly arm their million strong army? What if all of the artillery pointing at South Korea and the cause of much fear and dread is actually very little threat at all? What if North Korea knows this and fears being exposed in the bloody nose attack? We cannot know any of this for certain, but it would certainly explain a great deal.

And the promise to stop testing missile technology and nuclear weapons may not be all it is claimed to be either. In reality the North stopped doing this a while ago, either because of the sanctions and threats of military action or because of anger from China. Or some combination of the above. Or it could just be because they cannot do any more testing. It takes them weeks or at least days to assemble the hardware for one of their much vaunted missile tests, making it not much of a threat. And the nuclear testing may have had to stop owing to the recent collapse of the Punggye-ri testing site beneath Mount Mantap. 200 people were reportedly killed last year when this happened owing to tired mountain syndrome. The end of testing may have come about simply because they had no choice. Missile testing is a little more difficult to explain except when we remember that this is a catastrophically impoverished nation that has to send its own people abroad as slave labour to earn foreign currency, prints counterfeit currency and engages in endless crooked schemes around the world to earn just enough to pay for the luxuries that keep the Fat Leader in power. Missile technology is very very expensive when you have to lie and cheat just to pay for your leader's favourite cheese.

None of this means that America is wrong to be talking to North Korea, although conceding a leader to leader summit seems excessively generous and potentially counterproductive. It does mean however that the US holds all of the cards and should demand denuclearisation with full inspections to verify this, a proper peace treaty rather than an armistice and ongoing inspections to ensure North Korean compliance. Since the North is clearly angling for a relaxation of the sanctions that have done their work, there has to be a system of checks to ensure that they do not cheat. Because we have been here before. The North always cheats. Allowing them to do so again however would be more dangerous because it would give them the funding to complete their nuclear arms race, perfect the technology to miniaturise these nuclear weapons and the missiles to mount them on and ensure they do not burn up on re-entry. It is not clear that they have any of this at the moment and certainly don't have the funds to manufacture enough of them to be a reliable threat. It would be a catastrophic folly to relax the sanctions and hand them the money to make them truly dangerous.

Yet this is Donald Trump we are talking about here. He wants a win. If he gets a deal then it would be a genuine achievement, one that could see him emulate the achievements some of the greatest presidents in history. That is the danger though. Because he will not want to be seen to fail. We know he is capable of overriding the concerns of his advisers and taking a more emollient like with America's enemies just because it is better for Donald Trump rather than his country. We know this because he does this repeatedly and did it just last week when he undermined the impressively robust approach of his UN Ambassador, Nikki Haley towards Russia. Yes, Russia again.

Fortunately of course North Korea presumably does not have any kompromat over Trump and presumably he doesn't want to build a hotel in Pyongyang. Presumably they haven't lent him money, don't own any apartments in his buildings and don't have any tapes of him and prostitutes. We don't know very much about Kim Jong-Un, except that he is a spoilt and vicious brat accustomed to getting his own way. We don't know how good he is at diplomacy and whether he is clever enough to know how to flatter Trump and cajole him into doing something stupid. What we do know is that they have suddenly and inexplicably reversed their position and have succeeded probably farther than their own wildest dreams by doing so. We also know that they have a history of this kind of behaviour and that their word cannot be trusted. On the face of it then the two fat brattish leaders of these two countries have much in common. Whether or not that helps matters is moot. We should all be very very nervous about this summit meeting and what Trump will do. Because that is as unknowable as the enigmatic behaviour of the hermit kingdom.

Labour's Lies and Hypocrisy on Racism and Immigration

It was the 25th anniversary of the murder of Stephen Lawrence at the weekend. That was a bona fide example of racism, maybe even of institutional racism in the police's response to it, but oh how the left wing media loved that phrase and used it until it became meaningless.

The Windrush scandal is not an example of racism and is certainly not institutional racism. This was a case of institutional incompetence and not racism. There is nothing wrong with government and politicians wanting to be tough on illegal immigration as was the case here. Unfortunately what happened then impacted upon people who are here perfectly legally and ought to have been under no obligation whatsoever to have to jump through the unreasonable bureaucratic hoops demanded by the authorities. The policy was a good one in response to public anger about the levels of illegal immigration and the burden upon public services. It was the implementation that failed.

We should no longer be surprised by any of the rhetoric and serial dishonesty of Chauncey's Labour Party, but their making hay with this issue is beneath contempt. This would be the case under any circumstances given the facts. But since they are using the issue as a means of distracting from their own very real problems with serial, one might call it institutional racism in the form of anti-Semitism, something that some of their more honest members acknowledge, their falling upon this matter with such relief and sanctimonious glee has been revealing in its desperation. Chauncey could at last raise himself up once again and vent his usual cant and hypocrisy as he claims to be against racism once again.

Managing immigration, both illegal and legal is something that all governments should do. It is not racist. It is one of the core responsibilities of government to secure our borders and to ensure that we know who is entering this country and whether they have the right to live and work here. Under Labour this responsibility was deliberately ignored and undermined so that in the end they had to slam the door shut, or at least give the appearance of so doing. That was the genesis for the scandal that Chauncey now claims is an example of Conservative racism. How dare he. And just how stupid does he think the British public is?

No Customs Union

Late last night it was reported that Number 10 are saying once again, in response to feverish media reporting, that vote in the House of Lords last week, remainer flag flying and of course the deliberate mischief making of the EU Commission negotiating team, that Britain will not be staying in a customs union or joining in a bespoke one as part of the deal done. This is to be applauded but is about time. To repeat once again, whilst most of us were less than gruntled by the negotiations to date, including the deal for the bill we do not owe and the transitional deal that just keeps us in the EU for all intents and purposes with no means of influencing it, we will not accept under any circumstances, membership of a customs union or the customs union. To do so would be a betrayal of the referendum result and render our leaving meaningless. We would effectively make the transitional deal permanent, be out side the EU but have our trade policy dictated for us by a body we are no longer members of. The EU would be negotiating for itself and offering us up as sacrificial lambs without us having the power to prevent them. It is a legal and political nonsense. But of course, barring very high levels of stupidity normally only found on the Labour front bench, the others advocating for this know this very well and are seeking yet another way to stop us leaving at all.

Presumably Number 10 are clarifying this in a panic because of the rising number of Tory MPs saying that any attempt to keep us in the customs union would lead to Cabinet resignations and a probable leadership challenge.

The Prime Minister needs to get back on the front foot on this issue and tell the EU to back off once again. The EU is attempting to keep us in a customs union, their excuse being Northern Ireland. In reality this is just the wedge issue they are using to try to stop us leaving in any meaningful sense or at all. There are no real difficulties over the Northern Irish border if we are being sensible and pragmatic as the borders with Norway and Switzerland demonstrate. Nevertheless less the spin coming from the EU is that they have rejected all of the solutions proposed so far. Well we shall see. The deal is not done until the whole deal is done, which means no money until we are given a trade deal and meaning that the border issue must be resolved. Mrs May should threaten to walk. She has not once deployed this very effective ploy thus far. The time is fast approaching when, to hold on to her job, she may well have to.

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Sunday, 22 April 2018

The Bible: A Very Grim Fairytale: Deuteronomy: Chapter 19: Cities of Refuge

We now come to a short section on crime, punishment and justice. As in all things though God has some peculiar ideas on this. All of this is just more repetition of course, but some of the ideas are so weird they bear repeating. Even the people hearing all of this orally the first time thousands of years ago must have said: eh?

So, once in the Promised Land, said God, the people were to take over the cities and the towns and the houses. This doesn't actually make sense because they were supposed to be a people who had been given land by God to farm and raise cattle and grow crops. So which of them were to be farmers and which were to live in the cities? And how were they supposed to make their living?

Anyway, God wasn't concerned with this. He told them they had to set aside 3 of the cities for a special purpose. These were to be cities of refuge. This is a humdinger of an idea. These cities of refuge were set aside for people who had killed someone by accident to flee to. In these cities they were safe from anyone who wanted to kill them in revenge.

God even gave an example of someone who might avail themselves of this kind of refuge. If someone was cutting down a tree with an axe but the head came off the axe and hit another man and killed him then this, pretty obviously, is an accident. But nothing is so simple for this God. No. The relatives of the dead man might wish to pursue the man who had accidentally killed their relation but if he made it to a city of refuge he was safe. Other than there he could still be killed. It's a weird kind of justice isn't it.

There are all kinds of other arcane rules surrounding this but that is the gist of it. Premeditated murder was of course punishable by death. But there wasn't time for trials and so on. That would be far too easy.

Two witnesses as a minimum were required for a conviction. Without such witnesses anyone could get away with murder. Literally. Oh and if a witness lied then whatever he had falsely accused someone of doing would be done to him. It's an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth kind of justice. You'd think that God, being all seeing and all knowing, might have sorted all of this out for himself. But no. He's obviously too busy being revered for no reason and coming up with stupid rules about manslaughter.

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