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Well the book launch evening was fun.

Lots of interesting people went, being that we all volunteer for an online micro news site, that is the first time we have all been in the same room together. 

I was one of the two graphic satirists there, so it was great to meet the other one, Billy, so we were the niche corner, everyone else was a writer, poet or photographer. So Billy and i got to spend some time together and chat about what software and design programs we use to create our work.

Turns out the visual propaganda section from DD 103 might have inspired me more than i realised.

So got home, and Ros and Ella revealed the location of the secret biscuit stash.. it contains choccy diggies and coconut macaroons!!! What a result.

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As i mentioned before, i volunteer for a local micro news site as a satirist. They are publishing an anthology of the work all the volunteers have submitted through out the year in October.

Which is very exciting for me, as i will become a published satirist, in print, because being published online does not really count.

The hard bit is that between myself and the editors, Tom and Sarah, we have to decide which one of my satirist infographics go into the book, so far i am leaning towards this one...

i think this one is most on the money

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snap election word bingo card

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I made this for the local micro news site I volunteer for,

The 2017 snap election word bingo card...

What's your score?

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some more published satire

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Here is the link to the micro news site in my home town.

follow the link for some more of my published satire on the local politics of my home town, Portsmouth.


Thank you

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Scottish Independance

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Edited by Michael Gumbrell, Sunday, 26 Mar 2017, 11:36

From the www.thespecialistgeneralist.net

The Second Scottish referendum.


You can supranational away our sovereignty, but you’ll never take our ‘freedom’.


So the Scottish had a independence referendum, 3 years ago. The result was a NO to independence by a wide 10% majority. Job done, message sent, VHS copies of Braveheart put away and a continuation of the continuum by the UK.

Described at the time by the lead Yes to independence campaigner and head of the Scottish nationalist party, Alex Salmond, as a ‘once in a generation’ vote. Well generations move very quickly in Scotland, 3 years later the generations who voted to remain in the union (baby boomers, generation X and millennials) look set to vote again. This time we might have a second ‘once in a generation’ vote in a second generation (baby boomers+3,  Generation X+3, millennials+3 and generation Y-those born in the first 18 months of generation Y only though, these 3 year generation gaps really do stop a real divergence of generational voting demographics!).

Perhaps Mr Salmond, meant something different when he spoke of generations. Perhaps it was a threat, do it now or you will never get to do it again. Perhaps that was the motivation behind his evaluating the referendum as a generational defining moment. This is a historic vote everyone, best do your best, and bring home the result us nationalists have been longing for. The hopes of the nationalist Salmond were dashed, but his replacement, Mrs Sturgeon (that fishy surname confluence might come back to haunt these two, later in this article-when I am looking at the economic claims made by them both and the SNP).

So what changed?

We had a Uk wide referendum about our membership of the European Union. In which we voted, by a 4% margin, to leave. Scotland voted by a 24% margin to remain- now that is a big margin-if the population of your slice of the Uk was bigger than 8.5%. This disparity of a 24% margin of 8.5 million Scottish voters is the basis for the calls for a second referendum. If the entire population of Scotland had voted remain, 100%, the result would have been the same, Leave, instead of a 4% margin, it would have been a 1% margin for the Leave campaign. So Scotland might not liked the result, but they could not have changed it, even with 100% return. So was that demographics over democracy or just the social contract in operation? Either way it is enough to warrant the new SNP calls for a second-once in a generation-independence referendum, because Scotland does not want the result of the EU referendum to stand for them.


So the whole UK voted to leave the EU, if you consider the whole UK to be a democratic union. Scotland does not seem to feel this way, they are unhappy with the democratic result of the union they are in, so wish to leave the union to restore their democratic membership of the E.U. So rather than leave the EU as part of the world’s 5th largest economy ( and forecasted to become 4th, over taking Germany, in the next 10 years) the Scottish would aim to leave the Union and re-join the E.U as an independent economy, an economy that is 43rd largest in the world and 12th largest in the E.U. and about the same size as Chile in a global perspective or Ireland in an E.U perspective.


Lots of claims were made by Nationalist’s in the first, once-in-a-generation independence referendum. Three years having passed some of the claims made the firs- time round can be viewed with better perspective if a second referendum comes about. Mr Salmond had claimed that the revenue from oil production would be, in the first year of independence, £ 8 billion pounds (UK pounds), where as the actual figure as audited by the national Audit office was £ 600 million (still in UK pounds). Mr Salmond was wrong by a factor of 1300%, or to put it another way 3% of the total Scottish GDP!. This is staggering, but then if you are going to tell a lie, try to make it a whooper. If a second referendum goes around then Ms Sturgeon will not be able to be quite so ‘liberal’ with the projected oil revenue’s. So if granted a second referendum, the SNP will not be asking to leave the union so it can be an independent country, it will need to leave the union so it can join the E.U asap because it will need the euro, the European central Bank and the subsidies that the E.U provides to survive as an independent economy, I do appreciate the this is an oxymoron, to be an independent economy whilst being locked to a currency union, central bank loans and a group wide economic policy, does not sound very independent at all. It all sounds a bit fishy really, not that Mr Salmond or Ms Sturgeon would recognise the pun.

So we will see, Mrs May has already refused a second referendum, the Scottish parliament is still discussing if they should even ask for one, and the SNP are still curtailing generations to 3 year spans and declaring everything that is not to their liking as ‘undemocratic’. So while the world turns, liberalism in western societies continues to spin, the SNP are sounding like a broken record (we have to presume a Rod Stewart record).


‘you will never take our freedom’ *

* Terms + Condition’s apply, the word freedom may be substituted for currency union, economic union, ECB debt and IMF influence over internal political policy or supranational influence of a state’s sovereignty by the E.U at any given time.

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Specialist satire

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Here is my latest offering for the micro news site in Portsmouth.

I have squeezed Portsmouth city councils year into the news that monopoly has been updated.

I hope you enjoy it, even if you are not local to Portsmouth

I quite like this one, I might get accused of having idea's above my station (Fratton)

For any one who reads this and has ever been in the Navy, then you know what

'getting off at Fratton' means !

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satire published

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Here is the link for the starandcrescent.org where some more of my satire has been published.

as ever I am grateful to my editor, Sarah, for her wise words and patience.


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cultural short fall

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This is a short blog to celebrate the governance in my home town of Portsmouth.

Just a little story that I would commend to some satire.


Portsmouth used to have a community hub arts centre in a local park.

Run by volunteers it was a hub for people to learn and enjoy creating art in a peaceful environment.

The hub got a little bit behind with its rent, so they decided to have a fundraising fair on a Saturday afternoon to raise the funds required to continue their 10 year tenure.

Portsmouth City Council approved and gave a license for the fundraising fair for the Saturday afternoon.

All well and good so far, very heart warming, except for the fact that,

Despite giving a license for the Saturday fundraising fair, the council decided to foreclose and evict the Arts Centre on the Monday before hand. Portsmouth City Council were wary of the trouble this might cause so, rather than use their own officers to foreclose the building, they decided to send the police in to do the job. Which the police did, with great effect, arrests were made and the building shut down, locks changed and the community arts hub discontinued.


4 short weeks later, Portsmouth City Council have decided to bid to be the 2018 European City of Culture.

Very cultured indeed of the Council, or is that too soon?

I might encourage Portsmouth city Council to ‘stay classy’ but that would assume they had any class to retain.

So I made this satirical infographic, it is too late for the community arts hub in Portsmouth now, but hopefully the officers of Portsmouth City Council will feel a little twinge of guilt at their own actions.

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how to get ahead and alienate people

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from my blog:

The specialistgeneralist.net

Trump: the international realist


How to get ahead and alienate people.


Things seem to settle down somewhat in the White House for the last 5 days or so. I wonder if they have a board up in the White house staff break room that reads,

3 Days

 ‘Days since we had a total whirlwind of controversy’

So I thought I would have a little look and consideration of what Mr Trump’s fall back catch phrase of ‘make America great again’ means.

Mr Trump appears to be an international realist. Very much a fan of the state, The sovereignty of US territory. This must be the case because so much of what he has said, and unconstitutionally tried to do, reinforces a nationalist ideal. To be an international realist you must consider the power of your state on the world stage and in relation to the other states around you as primary. You must believe that all states exist in a balance of power and that winning this anarchy of power balance is to be the strongest player. To the victor the rewards, even if the reward appear to be playing the same game of power balance for ever.

To feed this ‘make America great again’ habit and reassert Americas position as number one, Mr Trump feels it is very important to, repel boarders-or let’s have a travel ban.

Remind the geographers and international partners that America has a non-porous border that is a fixed boundary and definable- or let’s build a wall.

Next Mr Trump turned his attention to the Liberal economic concerns of the interconnectedness of economic globalisation, again as an international realist, Mr trump will naturally resent the very transnational economic model of development. So playing his trump card (my apologies, but that cannot get old) he lays out his ‘art of the deal’ slick and pressures manufactures and companies into refocusing production on U.S soil. He also pulled the classic nationalist trick of going for government funded infrastructure development to fuel wages and living standards.

So far so good (if you’re an international realist) or not so good if you are of a collectivist persuasion.

If you are a collectivist, they you are going to consider that globalisation is inevitable, and the merging of cultural bonds progresses that process. Now it might get interesting. Is Mr Trumps persona, his public face, pre-planned to try and halt cultural collectivism? All of his tirades about the fake news, the unfair media, his opponents being evil, serve to alienate people outside of his core support. Are they aimed at a higher goal? Now if Mr Trump is planning his persona to offset and repulse global collectivism, then it is surely working. He is playing a role, after all politicians are ‘actors’ on a stage. Is he being deliberately outrageous, miss-leading, belligerent and vile to further his own agenda of international realism?

That would be fun, as long as he does not go so far that it threatens his position, then he will always use this tool of being unlikeable to repress the collectivist agenda towards globalisation. This is even more fun, because the media, Stephen Colbert on the late show, John Oliver, Trevor Noah and all the other liberal collectivist stars are helping Trump achieve his ultimate goal of steering the US into a more realist international position. The more they complain, the more people protest, the stronger Trump’s steer becomes. This is even more ironic when you consider the protests have popped up all over the world, we even had anti-trump protests here in Portsmouth, UK. They might all be playing even further into his hands, making the globalist trait of cultural interconnectedness even harder to achieve and providing Trump with internationalist realist fuel to thrown onto the fire.

There is a fly in the ointment of Trumps 110% commitment (it’s going to be great, let me tell you) to international realism. If you believe in the International realist perspective of international anarchy, then a mistrust of large states is a major part of your position. So you have threats to your states number one status. This makes Trump’s love in with the Russians and Putin a little harder to understand. Although the idea that Putin and Russia are really not fans of globalisation is easy to believe, so Russia herself is an international realist, then if you are in that game of one-up-man-ship, then you need a big heavy hitter to go up against. Since the cold war went the way of the neo-liberal globalist, Russia has been at a bit of a loose end, she could not win because she was playing a different game to everyone else. Rather like taking a cricket bat to a tennis match, you might get a game, but you will lose to the person with the racquet. So is the new Trump-Putin love in an attempt by the Russians to help Trump get his realist way with America, so that the newly wedded realists can have a good old game of superpowers?

Globalisation does raise many heckles, in fact it was the main bug bear of the Occupy movement, so does that mean for his very denouement, will Mr trump re-position America as a 100 % international realist state, destroy global collectivism with his own unique public persona, restore a nationalist economic agenda to American workers and then take up residence in a tent outside the Wall street to protest the remaining liberal economic elements of globalisation? Now that would really get the liberal media going, Stephen Colbert’s head might explode with the joy of that situation.

Who knows, here in the UK we voted to Brexit after all, so we clearly have eyes on a westphalian shift away from transnational organisations. The thing that interests me is the American belief that they are the best. They are god’s chosen country, the free country, the home of the brave individual. That mantra really supports an international realist perspective, right up to the point when things start to not go your way. America is the spiritual home of the liberal individualist, with their distain of big government and mistrust of governmental interference, lovers of their rights and freedoms.

So will Trump be able to roll back the clock, roll back globalisation and position America in a 100% international realist perspective, all in 4 years, whilst building a wall, rebuilding roads and bridges, making people happy with extra dollars in their pockets and being as vile as possible to the media? Well he got himself into the White House, so these things might well come to pass…. And if it all does not go his way, he can always go to his fall back position of ‘billionaire former president of the united states’


Mike Gumbrell


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some more satire

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Edited by Michael Gumbrell, Sunday, 29 Jan 2017, 16:36

So now my work is done for this week, albeit by 5pm on a sunday afternoon.

I can share some more satire.

This one is another Trump one, he really is brewing up a storm..

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more satire from me

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Edited by Michael Gumbrell, Sunday, 29 Jan 2017, 12:27

Just another bit of satire from me.

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brexit and the supreme court

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last one tonight, promise.

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Philosophical economics infographic

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Edited by Michael Gumbrell, Tuesday, 24 Jan 2017, 20:10

Just one more for the mean time, I would not want to wear out my self awarded welcome..

This one is philosophical again, economic and Portsmouth based.

For those of you not my from home town, a 'din' is a slang word for a foolish person.

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life outside of work and the OU

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Edited by Michael Gumbrell, Tuesday, 24 Jan 2017, 20:17

Well i found some time yesterday to do something outside of Work and the OU !

I produced another cartoon, attached above, for the Star and Crescent micro news site.

Hopefully my editor, Sarah, will like it enough to publish it with my others.

I thought i would share it here, i am studying Politics after all.

I also did a written article, 1000 words, perhaps all this TMA writing is starting to blend into my life outside the OU and work.

I call them cartoons, actually i can not draw for toffee and so produce sarcastic infographics instead!

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