It makes a difference whether you do it in France or Soho. You’ll be elected a fellow of the Academie in one instance and arrested on suspicion in the other. Neither is considered much of an honour.
This illustrates the problem we have in modern society – so many of the languages that we use are derived from other ones that we do not. Cross-overs, appropriations, intrusions, and slang all combine to muddy the pure streams of communication. And despite the efforts of academic societies and their government stooges, the mixture is just going to get worse. As people migrate they haul languages with them.
Pensez – ” to think ” in French – has given a name to a small government stipend called the pension. In its turn, this has become the name for dingy hotels that people receiving the money inhabit. They are dingy because they are cheap – that government money does not go far. The end result of it all is that the inhabitants are reduced to thinking how they would like to have more money so that they could move away and not have to think any more.
There is a deal of thinking going on at the government offices, too. Some of the workers think about how they can stop giving out the stipend, and some think about how long they will have to stay at the counter dealing with angry citizens – in short, how long until they can get a pension and go and think for themselves. It is complex and disturbing,
In contrast, the Soho ponce just hangs around street corners and bars soliciting vice and corruption. Their only worry is when the pubs will open and whether the cops are watching. It is a much more settled and comfortable existence and I should recommend it to all.
Note: I have been informed that if I spell pense with a ‘c’ and a capital ‘P’ I will be put under official scrutiny by the FBI. Okay. Anything to get readers…
I have just been looking at Facebook and apparently there is a problem occurring within the cartographic world – New Zealand is being left off world maps. And some people who live in New Zealand are distressed about it. This is all very wrong.
The people in New Zealand should be overjoyed. Being left off the world map is wonderful. If they play their cards right they can be left off any number of world charts – the ones that enroll them in bogus UN-ternational organisations for a start. The ones that seek to tell them how to live their lives in their own country for another. The ones that look for natural resources to exploit. The ones that want charity money to distribute amongst the tinpot* rulers of the world.
Exclusion from these lists is like a dream come true. What a blessed relief.
God send that they are able to opt out of the Commonwealth, the Greater Asian Co-Prosperity Sphere, the Anti-Hegemonist World Socialistic People’s Church of the Kims, and any other grasping, seething, load of horseshit that comes along. They have already been politically snippy to America, and we look forward to them turning their tiny little sights on us next. They’ll close the consulates and evacuate the Kiwis from NSW. Possibly on canoes.
For my NZ readers – some of whom are friends – do not take this badly. I do not wish to drive you weeping to the shore and throw you into the sea. You are wonderful people and as long as you keep your cans of Toheroa soup to yourselves you are welcome to stay. If you want to can something, can the haka.
* I nearly wrote shithole, but apparently that is subject to copyright.
I was shocked.
Shocked, I tell you. It was all I could do to catch my breath. I felt faint – had it not been for three stiff brandys I don’t know what would have become of me.
I remember the day well when I heard the news. It seared itself into my memory. The headline ” French Leader Had A Mistress ” blared out at me from page 23 of the local grazier’s and stockbreeder’s gazette. It was as if the fabric of the world had crumbled beneath my feet.
I felt my gorge rise – to think that a trusted leader of a Catholic country could abandon morality so blatantly – and for such a long period of time. How could any citizen of France emerge from their house and walk along the street after this news? What new horror lurked in the dark streets of Paris? Next thing you knew there could be women dancing bare-chested in cabarets and after that the earth would open up and swallow us all…
Well, we recovered. Eventually. Enough anguish was pressed into enough ink and printed in enough papers to eventually lay the whole sad thing to rest. France has recovered. Morality has been re-asserted. Curfew is tolled each night at 18:00 hours and everyone sleeps with their hands outside the bedsheets. And I think it has done the world good – even the world of the United States.
They seem to have been able to take possible revelations of their President’s liason with a strange woman in their stride. The thought that he may have paid her hush money when he realised that he would actually make it to the presidency and that she may have wanted more after she realised it too – the thought that she may have decided to take her story to other political entities who might also have access to money – and that now the money is nearly irrelevant – has occurred to many. It has occurred to me.
There may be some outraged by it all – for outrage is a powerful and useful emotion. There may be some genuinely concerned for the morality of it all – again, morality is a real thing.
And there may be some who, like myself, have exhausted all our tears on His Majesty King Louis XVI, and have none to spare for Mr. Harding. And as we have not been paid any money to care, we don’t.
I suppose I should be grateful to the people of Quebec. I might not have felt so in 1957 when I lived in Montreal and had to endure the indignities of Grade 5. The school system was split between English-speaking teachers and French-speaking ones and there were times when the kids were the football between the teams. Thankfully they had to teach English literature in English and mathematics in numbers and the odd intrusion en Francais could be endured.
Later, the pressure to teach every school child in Canada some French extended out as far as Alberta and British Columbia and I got at least two years of basic grammar in the early 60’s. I can fumble my way through a French magazine if there are pictures with short captions. If there are girlie pictures I fumble slower.
But they did contribute enough political whining and pressure to raise a great debate about ” Bi-culturalism ” and we school kids got onto the gravy train. We wrote essays, made speeches, and in some cases collected free trips to Ottawa to pretend that we were the future of the country. We were overwhelmingly snot-nosed, mealy-mouthed, and cynical, and I guess that if we had pursued that course over the time one of us could be Prime Minister of Canada right now. Come to think of it…
I didn’t win the Ottawa trip on the strength of my speech, but I won a job at the local newspaper doing anything that no-one else wanted to do. I loved it, and it has given me a taste for writing, photography, and cynicism ever since.
Secede? Oh the political pundits sometimes come out with the business of Quebec seceding from Canada and becoming an independent nation. They toy with it every few years…just long enough to get more federal money. The awkward thing is that the rest of Canada may see it as a good idea one day and take them up on it.
On one condition. Quebec gets Trudeau. All the Trudeaus…
” Instead of toilet paper…”
” Not until you use the old one up completely…”
” Had a lot of trouble with that model…”
” I didn’t use an undercoat…”
” It normally has sauce…”
” Special colour not available in your state…”
” Pre-zip design…”
” I’ve got this rash…”
” It’s a blue envelope with a government postmark…”
” Good Evening, Driver…”
” Hello, hello, hello. What have we here…? ”
” That’s odd…”
” It’s an old map…”
” You may want to sit down…”
” Hey, Mate, gotta…?”
” Did you not receive our letter? ”
” What is your full name? ”
Note for the gentiles: A lot of guides for the perplexed were written. Some of them worked and some of them didn’t. The fact that people are still reading them tells us that there are more of the latter than the former…
So – Deception.
Deception defined: a fraud. The act or fact of being deceived. We start to get into a circular word whirlpool here as most of these terms have come up before, but to help you out, let us say that a deception is a lie that worked. A bluff over which we have driven the buffalo of your belief. A trifling amusement that allows all the rest of hell to rise from the ground.
Are we often deceived? Are you reading this on the internet? Do you take a daily newspaper or watch a television? Must this be spelled out? Yes? Very well:
Yes, we are often the subject of deception in political, moral, financial, and artistic matters. We are deceived by others, we deceive ourselves, and we deceive others. Some of the deceit is done for good purposes – we throw up Santa and his elves to compel children to good behaviour. Some is done for bad – we see gangsters promoting fundamental religion to gain political power. Some is done to obtain money – this is called mainstream advertising. And some is done for fun – sophomore student pranks and the vast majority of romantic courtships. It often works – indeed it may be said that deception works more often than bald truth, and is a kinder social phenomenon.
If you lie to someone, it is usually seen as a bad thing – generally by people who feel themselves in danger of falling for that lie themselves. If the lie is successfully absorbed, though, the condemnation is diffused and may ultimately disappear. The way to make it disappear quickly is to cut the moralists in on the takings.
If, on the other hand, someone lies to you, you are entitled to be outraged and to take the moral high ground. High ground is often thought to convey a superiority to an army – but remember that high ground silhouettes you against the skyline and may make it easier for your enemies to pick you off. Consider carefully before you turn the spotlight of goodness and morality on anyone – it’s easy to hit a spotlight with a bullet.
In the end, truth will out – like a belly button. And what a disgusting sight that can be. The best plan for Backstabbers is to concert an agreement with their enemies as to just how much truth and dignity is going to be thrown about. Limit the morality and you limit the damage – and you leave more time free to attack your friends.
A quick google of the word ” fraud ” will turn up definitions that include the terms ” wrongful “, ” criminal “, and ” deception “. The writers say that this is intended to result in financial or personal gain and apparently they are against it. Fortunately the Guild is here to help our members combat this sort of prejudice and negativity.
There are also legal definitions held in various statutes that seem to be equally discouraging – but the good news is that any thing that is written down and formally sealed in a legal sense is a known fixed position…and the sensible Backstabber will know how to circumvent this.
Let’s take the word ” wrongful “. A quick review of history shows that what is considered wrong in one society is very often considered right in another. The ancient Greeks disposed of unwanted babies by letting them die on cold hillsides – this is frowned upon today. A Po’Boy sandwich welcomed in Biloxi would be instant cause for a religious riot in Riyadh – but then would so many other things…
Wrongful is as wrongful does and the things that evoke the word are generally only wrongful to one of the parties: the one who benefits least. Deciding what is wrongful then becomes a case of numbers on a balance sheet. All we need do to reverse the decision is change where the numbers go.
Note: Still wrong to kill Greek babies. But if you get pickles and coleslaw with that Po’Boy, no-one could possibly complain. Goes well with a couple of beers as you chill out at the mosque.
” Criminal “? Well that refers to crime and crime refers to something that someone in authority wants to control. And that control can be for morals or moolah.
Is running a two-up game in Hay Street on Saturday morning a crime? Sure is. Is running a two-up game at the Burswood Crown Casino at the same time a crime? Not at all. The only difference is the fact that in one case the state government gets a cut of the takings and in the other they don’t. And as the state government has the handle on the law switch, they get to say what a crime is.
Let’s hope reading this weblog column does not become a crime.
More on the subject in the next column. Stay tuned to discover how you can deceive for fun and profit.