Convery Ronnie 12

By Ronnie Convery, the Italian Consul in Scotland.

As Friday approaches, with its 11pm deadline when the UK officially leaves the European Union, there is a temptation to retreat into bunkers of defiance (on the part of those of us who see the move as a tragic error) or triumphalism (among those who will see their plan realised).
Elsewhere the world is pulling itself apart, seemingly incapable of resisting extreme positions, with public discourse polarised as never before. Think Trump, think Salvini, think, well … Brexit.
What can we do to preserve civility and moderation in this race to the extremes?
One rather wonderful attempt to fly the flag for dialogue and civil engagement is being made by my friends Fr Joe Evans and Luke Wilkinson by launching a new online journal – Adamah – https://adamah.media
Adamah means good soil (lest you wondered) and it is only from the good soil of moderation and civil dialogue that good fruits can grow.
I have written a few articles for it … an overview of how cinema handles religion and a review of the Netflix hit The Two Popes.
But there’s much more in Adamah than my scribbles. Do go and have a look and maybe sign up for a regular note when a new edition is published online.
Meanwhile … Friday 31 January looms. For me the lowering of the flag of the 12 gold stars of Europe will be a sad moment. The EU was not perfect, but it was an example of international co-operation and sharing of expertise and resources unlike anything else in the world today.
We may lose our European citizenship and rights on Friday night, but we can never lose our European heritage, culture and history.

Ronnie Convery is the Italian Consul in Scotland


  1. A bit of a forlorn hope to think that civility will be part of Britain’s exit from the EU.

    Brexit is quite the reverse and is a populist resentment against dirty foreigners who come to steal our jobs and dine off our social benefits. That of course is why about 18% of our doctors in the NHS are from beyond our shores delivering medical care to a people who don’t want them.

    It’s also why about 10,000 Chinese – Asian student come to the Glasgow Universities every year paying top dollar fees and supporting themselves and the local economy. And the interchange of top academics attracted from around the world to lecture at these universities. Well stealing our jobs again. Better that they do not come. They can go and saddle the new universities popping up in places like Dubai and Qatar who are spending big bucks to develop international centres of learning. They’ll be more than happy to take the students and academics that we don’t want.

    But it’s not just this Italian consul chap who maybe fears resentment against Italians living here. It’s maybe also the Irish living here. The bog Irish, who not so long ago, were despised as b3ing nothing better than swinging the pick. They too along with the Poles, the Wops and all the others could be in for the Windrush treatment.

    Ah we’ll just have to go back to building ships on the Clyde or more likely more zero hour contracts for our aspiring youngsters looking for a career in MacDonalds, Costa, KFC or Starbucks. We know where our future lies!

  2. And in thinking about residency one does have to wonder when the Border Force will start going round the doors rounding up those not registered to remain.

    There’s now a well established system in place whereby folks can be denied the right to access medical services, rent a house, operate a bank account or take employment. The Home Office have been putting the system whereby all the data bases are linked together.

    In fact, when one needs to register with a doctor, the medical practice has to run your details through Home Office and Border Agency data bases for a patient to register. The data bases also share details with other bodies like HMRC.

    But we live in a democracy. Thatcher and her successors will look after us. The super surveillance is for our good, our safety, and to protect us from all harm. That’s why the Windrush folks, some of whom who had cancer, were after sixty years in the country, denied medical care.

    Ah well, just wait until the Universal Healthcare Allowance comes along. Like Universal Credit it will I’m sure be another super contribution to social and economic support. But we wouldn’t have it any other way – would we now?

    Yes, Universal Healthcare Allowances!

  3. Could we be seeing the first taste of this under the SNP administration in Dumbarton in mental health First Aiders. People recruited to patrol council offices looking for people who are depressed or suffering from one kind of mental illness or another. I am told that one in three of us has some kind of mental illness. There will be folk with Monday morning blues, hangovers or whatever or simply fed up because they don’t like the job looking out for the men and women in the white coats. What will these people be called, I wonder? And what will they cost the council taxpayer? Btw, will those who have “come out” and admitted they are suffering from mental illness be ushered off for a series of tests and will these tests be compulsory and apply to everyone from the very top to the bottom of the organisation? I think we should be told. It may be fashionable to tip your hat to mental health issues, but these measures appear ill thought out which would be nothing new in our council.

  4. Bedlam Editor. That was a big building with a lot of tortured souls. Not that Bedlam I suspect did much to assist the tortured. Sadly, I fear first aiders will be but a sticking plaster on the multiple wounded in the Church Street and beyond big house.

    Maybe I am being unduly frivolous because genuine mental health is a serious issue that is hugely misunderstood.

    But I do take your point about the Monday Blues and the Hangovers and some institutions do indeed have the Monday Club where curers are are consumed.

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