Wednesday, 5 March 2014

Teacher Frustration at Putin

A teacher in West Somerset Sellotaped the mouths of some of her pupils as they were obviously not behaving in class. Instead of getting support from parents, some of them complained to the school and one of them actually had the nerve to complain to the police (who, thankfully, were not interested).

If one of my kids came home telling me their teacher had Sellotaped their mouth, I'd be more interested as to what my kid had been up to to deserve the punishment than berating a teacher for trying to maintain discipline among a bunch of animals. My father would probably have punished me for being punished.

The reason teachers are so intensely frustrated is that they are in a constant battle with self-righteous parents and are not able to discipline kids in a way that ensures good behaviour. My school drew the line at child sacrifice, although that wasn't beyond the disciplinary lexicon of the prefects.

Never mind about the kids concerned growing up and behaving, a lot of parents also need to grow up too.

On another tack, regardless of what you think of Putin and what's going on in the Ukraine, you have to admire the way he's playing all the parties and has everything under his control - he's certainly read his Machiavelli. Mind you, you can do that when you're a virtual dictator having locked up the majority of your opposition on trumped up charges. One thing he can bank on is that the EU doesn't want another basket case economy in the club.

However, I can't help feeling he's made a strategic error - had he done nothing and had Ukraine cosied up to the EU and eventually joined it, he would have had a legally leased military base within the EU. There again, perhaps his actions are precipitating exactly that and overcoming the EU's reluctance to accept another basket case. It's a game of chess.

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