Peter Rhodes on making your own alcohol, threats over Brexit and a troubled country hoping to join the EU

Read today's column from Peter Rhodes.

Threatening - Polly Toynbee
Threatening - Polly Toynbee

THROUGH sheer incompetence on my part, the Australian airline Qantas recently appeared in some versions of this column as Quantas. I should not have inserted the U. Mea Clpa.

NO, you are not alone. I, too, am puzzled by those MPs who queued for hours in the Commons to bellyache about not being given enough time for full scrutiny of the Withdrawal Bill instead of sitting down quietly and scrutinising the damn thing.

AND now, whither Brexit? I haven't a clue. But it might not be a bad idea to pass a tiny new Act of Parliament on the following lines. If an MP is elected to Parliament to represent one party and then decides to join another party, he or she must immediately submit to a by-election. It cannot be right for voters who thought they were electing a Labour MP to find themselves represented, sometimes for years, by a Lib-Dem, or vice versa. Time to change the law. Let us call it the Turncoat Bill.

HERE, if anybody needs it, is yet another reminder that if you think leaving the EU is a leap into the unknown, so is staying in. The next item on Brussels' agenda is the application by Albania to join the EU. To put it kindly, Albania is a troubled country, largely run by the mafia, awash with drugs, with 3.5 million citizens and an estimated four million guns. What could possibly go wrong?

TALKING of the Mafia, wasn't there something deliciously chilling about Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell's reaction to the Labour MP Ronnie Campbell's support for Brexit in the Commons? "I’m going to have a chat with Ronnie," smiled McDonnell. First the chat. Then the severed horse's head under your duvet.

MEANWHILE over at the Guardian, Polly Toynbee is also in threatening mode with: "Labour MPs who help Boris Johnson to victory will not be forgiven." And Gina Miller adopts the menacing air of a general confidently marshalling her troops in the fight for a Brexit extension: "What matters is the law, and my lawyers are ready." She speaks grandly but has never been elected to anything by anybody. As far as I can see, Miller's only qualification for intervening in the Brexit process is that she is very, very rich.

FASCINATING case from Ohio where police found a driver to be well over the blood-alcohol level for driving, but he insisted he hadn't had a drink. A clinic examined him and discovered a yeast-producing fungal growth in his gut. This, combined with the carbohydrates in his meals, was producing a beer-like fluid. In other words he was a one-man micro-brewery. He has now been cured by anti-fungal treatment. This raises a couple of questions. Firstly, are smart lawyers already examining this case to find yet another loophole in the drink-drive laws? Secondly, where can you get this fungus stuff?

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