The Conspiracy

Did you read about Big Oil? And Big Coal? And Big Gas? And Big Cheesecake?

How about Vested Interests? They were the favoured bogeymen of my old uncle Jude, the Montana cattle farmer. They apparently explained anything that he did not like. When it was pointed out that he had a vested interest in his farm, he went all morose.

” They ” of course, are prime suspects in the downfall of everything. The ” They ” varies according to who is doing the complaining. Men, Russians, the CIA, mysterious swarthy immigrants…all guilty of being ” They “. ” They ” are a pretty active and resourceful set of villains, and can be called upon to take the blame in many circumstances. Hard to actually pin thunderstorms or badly fitting sink gaskets on them, but useful for nearly everything else…

Whether it is spraying innocent populations with mind-altering substances like oil from leaking jet engines or poo from the airliner tanks, or smuggling hordes of tiny assassins in Post Paks, the forces of evil can always be counted on for a good topic at a party or public bar. They get more active after the third pint. A nod is as good as a wink to a blind man and tinfoil helmets are proof against most known germs…or is that Tea-Tree oil?  Wear both just to be safe.

PS: Don’t forget the Rumenati – the secret organisation of cows that controls the world…

High Culture – Low Culture

And what about middle culture? Why is it ignored? What does the bourgeoisie have to do to get a little respect?

Try saying the word ” bourgeois ” in any social group and see what happens. Do it – if you possibly can- in a dead flat monotone and a context that hints no judgement of the actual word. It is the nearest thing that you can do these days to dropping a hand grenade into a koi pond.

No-0ne likes the bourgeoisie. No-one respects them. No-one has any faith in their tastes, judgement, intelligence, or morals. None of their history is pointed to with pride. No-one wants to admit to knowing them and certainly no-one wants to be considered to belong to the group. The reason for this is simple: no-one knows exactly what the word means – it is as nebulous as the word ” sin ” or the word ” goodness ” and no-one really knows how to use it Not until now. But this all changes – the Backstabbers Guild Of Australia will provide that definition and a clear guide to the whole concept. Bourgeoisism will come of age.

BOURGEOIS: Middle class – the one that the peasant owes money to. Oddly enough, also the one that the lord owes money to. A social creditor, without being a supporter of Social Credit.

You may also add capitalist in there somewhere. In any event the bourgeois is in a position that raises the jealousy and ire of everyone else for two reasons: They have property and they have independence. You might not think the latter when you see the extent to which rules are demanded by the peasants and imposed by the lords on the basis of ownership. There is a commonality in both high and low – they want that property but can’t quite figure out how to get at it.

The bourgeoisie is derided for their taste in clothing, architecture, music, and literature. No-one thinks well of them for what they choose, though in most cases the highs and lows will try to emulate them when they can. The most infuriating thing about them is they can pretty well have what they like, because they can pay for it. Those who can’t or won’t regard this as a reminder of their failings.

But the thing that should really make peasant and lord angry is the realisation that most of the actual productive thinking – as opposed to the military posturing of king and  indolence of pawn – comes from the bourgeois and their propensity to do more than people have done before. They might want to profit, but at least something other than battles and beer barrels come of it.

Or to put it in more refined terms; the upper classes cause shit, the lower classes do shit-all, and the middle classes do shit and make shit.

SSSSV Motor Vehicles

Or ” Finally telling yourself the truth…”.

Calling a motor vehicle a 4 Wheel Drive is pretty specific. If it does indeed drive from all four wheels you are correct – if it only uses the front or back ones then you are running a fraud. Not that I am criticising you in any way – federal governments are founded on fraud and look how well that has worked out…

Likewise calling it an ambulance – if it has stretchers, defibrillators, and tongue depressors – is all good. Whether you can actually save anyone’s life is another thing but at least you get to play with the siren.

Army tank also pretty well defines the steel box with a big gun. People can fiddle with the terms assault gun or tank destroyer but in the end it has tracks and a loud noisemaker and if you are at the receiving end of the shell the rest is just technicalities.

But where are we with the SUV – the Sport Utility Vehicle? It looks like a fancy 4 WD, but frequently bottoms out on a beer can in the road. It has minimal actual haulage space once one has given room over to complex transmission tunnels, spare wheel stowage, and articulated coffee trays. And no-one who owns one goes any closer to sport than to drop the kids at tee-ball on Saturday before heading to the hair dresser.

I propose that the brainless suburbanites who clog the car parks with their silver or black ” Grande Oplunezia Sportifissmo iTQ 56 ” be compelled to list their hulks as SSSSV rather than SUV. Suburban Shopping School Status Vehicle. Big enough to give the owners a sense of importance and bulky enough to shield them from the consequences of their own bad driving. The kind of car that tells people that you have arrived…and makes them long for your departure.

I would not deny the country-dweller and the explorer the comfort of the 4WD. They are useful and in some cases necessary modes of transport. But I would make sure that they were restricted to the country – perhaps a cordon of vehicle inspection posts ringing the metropolitan area with sharpened steel cutter bars set at a height that would allow an average sedan to pass but sheer the cabin off an SUV. It would solve the problem of trying to reverse out of a car park bay when the sods park you in.

 

It’s All The Fault Of…

Of? Of whoever you don’t like. And that is the beauty of modern life; there are so many people that we know about that we can always have a scapegoat. Whenever we need to pin something onto someone, there will be a suitable person available. And there will be people who agree wholeheartedly with us.

A couple of classic examples: Putin and Trump. Ostensibly the leaders of the two most powerful military forces in the world. Possibly a couple of maniacs. Probably two people who are making it up as they go along. Whoever and whatever they really are, they can be the bogeymen for all of us whenever the complexity of the world starts to become evident. It’s all their fault…

The man of the dark ages or of the medieval world had no such easy human excuse. The villager or townsman might only know a couple of dozen other people in the world, and if none of them fitted the bill for a malefactor, then they would have to fall back upon the devil or supernatural spirits. A villain was needed, as will always be the case when people do not want to take responsibility for their own folly, but if your ville was very small you needed to go outside it.

Our media is really a blessing in this matter – every day it brings us stories of how bad it all is, and assures us that it will only get worse. It holds up the hoary head of the pirate/tyrant/media personality and invites us to spit at it. We duly expectorate according to expectation and all are happy. The media is served.

And it is served because of the fine people who sponsor the advertisements. Hate Trump? Buy these sunglasses. Sneer at Putin? Here’s a holiday advertisement.

Here’s a thought. If you hate Americans or Russians or people from Tierra Del Fuego…write down all the times that you have actually been injured by someone from that hated country. Be honest. Only the times of direct contact, eye to eye…

Can I have the other half of that sheet of paper that you’re not using? I wanna draw pictures of angels and devils on it…

The Retirement Scoreboard – Part Eight – The Glorious Privilege

Everyone seems to be using the term ” privilege ” these days. It has become a shuttlecock to be batted about during political badminton games of all sorts. I am horribly glad I do not live in academia as I am sure that it would be thrown at me daily.

But I am delighted to be able to say that I do enjoy a privilege in retirement that I probably never thought about whilst employed – the privilege of telling the truth.

Honesty is not a privilege, we read. It is a basic requirement of civil life -a cornerstone of philosophy and religion – a basic tenet of everything from the Boy Scouts to Buddhism.

Bullshit. The same people who brate for honesty press religious myth and political expediency upon us just as hard, and have shaved, whittled, and lubricated honesty to fit their own mechanisms. Diogenes might just as well be going around with a pocket LED torch…

Honesty from a politician or lawyer is like gold, or platinum, or diamonds…all the more valuable for the rarity. In a business figure, whether low or high in a company, it is also a variable virtue. In the digital age it might even be a virtual virtue – if it disappears you have to boot up the businessman again. Now I could get into that.

A retired person has little value in business – or to business. Their influence thereby diminishes, and by the time most people retire they have learned to avoid the law anyway. So they are suddenly free to indulge themselves in honesty. Indeed it can become either their most endearing or most fearsome feature. With a little planning and foresight, the retiree can decide the exact mixture of these two qualities and apply it where needed.

In our next installment of the retirement scoreboard I’ll show you how to become the honest darling of the neighbourhood*.

*Pick your neighbourhood wisely…

” Not My Lemon Slice “

The election results are in. The current Western Australian government is out, and will be replaced by a party that has not been in power for years.

We have been studying the news recently, however, so we know what to do.

a. Riot. Before they lock up all the Transperth buses we will climb aboard with our seniors cards ( free travel between 9:00AM and 3:00PM ) and seize them from the startled drivers. We will overturn them on the main street and set fire to them. One team of two pensioners per bus. Should have that one done before the daily radio serial comes on at 10:30.

b. Refuse to attend the inauguration of the new Premier. Of course, he doesn’t have a public open-air inauguration as such in the Westminster system but this should not prevent our local film and second year arts students from declaring their righteousness and refusing to attend something they are not invited to.

c. Call for the impeachment of the new Premier.

d. Find some physical aspect of the new Premier that we can belittle. His hair is probably his own and the size of his hands is likely to be average, but there must be something that can be ridiculed. Has anyone seen his feet?

e. Start a sneering campaign against his wife and family. Then berate those who join in it with us. Then do it again. Bait. Switch. Bait. Switch.

f. Dig up dirt on the new Premier’s ministerial appointments. Or make up dirt. Or just wait until they go off the rails themselves and take it from there.

g. Make noises about emigrating to South Australia or the Northern Territory while attending hip lunches and swish parties.

h. Demand a safe space to prevent micro aggressions and cultural appropriation. I am going to demand one at the local hobby shop and pub. If they can pipe model airplane glue into the saloon bar I may never leave.

i. Ring up Oliver Stone, Michael Moore, and John Pilger and see if they are interested in doing a scathing documentary on whoever becomes Premier, if he doesn’t pay up.

j. Complain bitterly to anyone who cannot get out of earshot fast enough that the Premier is a man and therefore is not a woman. Demand compensation, reparations, an apology, a special day, and a fleet of white Toyota’s for the fact-finding co-operative.

k. Flood the social media with a putative campaign for the wife of the deposed Premier to be elected in his place in 3 year’s time.

We’re no fools. We understand elections. We know our chance when we see it. When the situation demands it we can be as revolting as the next state.

 

First Results Are Coming In From Election Central

It’s too early to tell yet but the swing seems to be toward the Lemon Slice.

A strong fightback has been promised by the Rum Balls and there is always the possibility of an ethnic resurgence once the Curry Puffs are put on the table.

Supporters of each party are at the polling station handing out How To Eat cards.

More results as they come to hand.