Your Email Of The 15th Inst. Has Been Noted

And unlike previous forms of communication, will not be considered to be private, inviolate, confidential, or secret. It will, indeed, be copied innumerable times, and made available to anyone who bears you a grudge. Prospective grudge-bearers who wish to invest in material for future use will also be accommodated at a special early bird rate.

Please note that the privacy disclaimers and instructions routinely included on the bottom of all official forms from this office are for theatrical and humorous purpose, and should in no way be construed as legally binding unless you have more powerful lawyers than we do. In this context, ” Three Finger ” Louie Custozza and the Boys From Missoula are considered to be a legally practicing entity and can be cited in negotiations.

As it is impossible at this stage to determine what the year’s cause célèbre or political opportunity will be, we would like you to send a great many more communications on the computer. It would be appreciated by our Chief of Blackmail if you would moderate your use of stimulating substances before typing, as some of the spelling can be very difficult to deal with if you go past certain limits. Please feel free to express yourself as violently and controversially as you wish as this makes for juicier scandal. Photographs are always welcome. No need to dress…




Broadcast Live From Your House

When you watch the news about the US president Donald Trump – or click the Facebook side panel – or listen to your friends deride him based upon what they have read on the internet…have you ever stopped to consider what YOU might look like if you were subject to the minute scrutiny that attends him?

I ask this as I remember being afflicted with similar scrutiny when a child in school – I was the fat, new, frightened kid…and was fair game for all the bullies and smart arses in every school I attended. As my detractors wanted to belittle me, they watched every single thing I did and found fault. The simplest action was cause for howls of contempt. Nothing was private, sacred, or approved. President Trump seems to be in the same position vis-a-vis the people who supported the other side of politics – and lost – and who now want their revenge.

So let’s imagine you – if you’re a Trump detractor – going about your daily routine. Let’s see if the treatment works on you.

You get out of bed in time for breakfast: ” Lazy swine lolls in bed while others slave to prepare feast. ” Not sounding too good.

So you get up earlier next day : ” Can’t sleep. Guilty conscience. Snoops on cooks behind the scenes. ” Still not good publicity. And who is feeding these stories to the press?

Okay, this time you’ll please someone…you’ll do without breakfast: ” Too good to eat like a normal person. No pleasing some people. ” Well, what the actual…

And we haven’t even started on your bathroom routine, your clothes for the day, or whatever it is you’re going to be doing for a living – never mind your religion, family, or politics. These topics will be covered by your enemies and will prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that you are evil incarnate, totally incompetent, and in collusion with the Russians, the French, the Tongans, and the firm that makes Cheezils. Every single action that you undertake, all day, all week, all year, will be wrong. The press and your detractors will be free to lie about you, to you, and because of you. No-one will hold them accountable.

Feeling the love yet? Feeling the burn yet? Feeling the bigotry and pettiness yet? Want to do something about it? Here’s what you do.

Nothing. Not a damn thing. Do not take the slightest notice of your detractors. Do not reward them with anger, or distress, or recognition. Take note of the fashionable meme that started up a few years ago: ” Keep calm and carry on. “. By all means use social media but do not use it to vent frustrations or angst. Be benign, vague, and cheerful. Send kitten videos. And do what you were going to do regardless.

Don’t be too sanguine about the results. You won’t reap any better opinion of yourself from the people who are determined to hate you; they have invested to much of their time in speech and writing to resile their position. Many of them hope for benefit from your opponents*. The best you can hope for is a better judgement of history.

* And if, in a few years, they present their intellectual bill to the other side of politics – and it is not paid – they have a ready-made supply of protest that they can direct to them.




Are You Guilty?

guiltWell, of course you are. You’re reading this on a computer, mobile phone, or tablet and that automatically makes you guilty in someone’s eyes. If you are of a mild and penitent character, you’ll mourn that you cannot atone for your sins. If you are of a more robust nature you’ll also mourn…that you cannot get your thumbs into those accusing eyes.

Guilt is a wonderful thing. It has enabled parents and grandparents to punish their offspring for literally centuries. If it is used well it enables those same offspring to punish the parents and grandparents. Skilful guilt operators can use it to tarbrush entire populations, just as their opposite numbers can use it to whitewash in the same way. I sometimes wonder if it is the same brush – and I am curious as to what they use to clean it between coats. I have a devil of a time getting common enamel paint out of hog bristle brushes as it is.

Is there collective guilt? You bet there is, and there are collectors in all divisions who have amassed magnificent examples. No matter who you are or where you come from – they can find something to shame you with. If not you precisely…not you the individual registered citizen with a number, password, police history, dossier, and soul…then you as a person with a certain complexion or set of gonads. You may not think that you are guilty of anything much at all, but when it comes to having moral and political contumely hung on you, you might as well be made of velcro. They gonna make something stick.

Is there individual guilt?  Well, yes, of course. You are guilty of it right now. In fact, you’re soaking in it. You know what you did…

Can we have international guilt-packages that allow us to feel bad while on holiday overseas? Yes, and these are very popular these days. Wherever you go there was someone who has gone there before you and done something objectionable. The locals have a record of it and are waiting for you to step off the Boeing to tax you with it. And we do mean tax – the only way you are going to get back onto the plane is to pay the locals. You must not complain or you will not be allowed to get back on until many Boeings have come and gone. You wanted to see how the world works and this is how…

Can you stop being guilty? Well, in the case of the overseas guilt, it generally stops when the cabin crew arm the doors and cross-check. You get to pick up a fresh lot of angst from the baggage carousel at your next port of call. For domestic political/economic/social guilt it only stops when your accuser gets either tired of the internet, finally gets their paper published, or is appointed to a board.

Reading Mein Kampf

mkOr…not reading it. At least not yet…

I have owned a hardbound copy of this book for the last 50 years. I tried to read it 5 times in that period. I failed to get past the first chapter 5 times.

In the interim I have read through many other books – some of them foolish, some stupid, some grim. But none of them have had the cachet of this book. None of them have carried as much disreputable baggage.

Am I a wuss? Am I a fool? Am I an intellectual coward? Very likely I am. But I have read Marx in the meantime…and Chairman Mao…and biographies of Stalin, Mussolini, and Hirohito. I’ve read potted histories of the Soviet Union. I’ve read flying saucer conspiracy/Third Reich astrology/ Henry Ford propaganda crap since. I’ve even read political pamphlets from Fremantle, for Heaven’s sake…and have consigned some of them to the trash without a second thought.

But that damned book still sits there on the shelf and defies me. I dare not burn it – lest I be a book burner. I regard it as I would regard a fused bomb…a very old fused bomb, with unstable filler and detonator. I am loath to touch it.

Perhaps I should just dust it off and send it to someone with best wishes. Who shall it be? I have 204 Facebook friends and some of them are readers…


Busy Life? Working Interstate? No Time To Be Offended?


Well, Good News. The Backstabbers Guild Of Australia has a great new service. Now we can be offended for you – and for a very reasonable price,too.

In today’s world there are so many calls upon our intellect and emotions that we can sometimes miss out on opportunities to be enraged. Perfect opportunities to be righteous can pass us by in a moment as we engage in daily work and family life. We can start to slip off the Welt-Angst map.

Now there is an answer. For a small fee of $ 25 the Guild will undertake to register your disapproval on the social media outlet of your choice for an entire year. Our trained operatives will monitor the channel and instantly hop into any discussion that contains your specified trigger words to make sure that everyone knows that you are upset.  They will fight tenaciously to keep your opinion before the world’s eyes and will make sure that yours is the very last word.

If you wish to press your opinion to the temples of the internet and pull back the hammer day and night you can be assured that it will be done. And you needn’t stop at one stream – and extra $ 25 will get you on another one. Think of it, for a measly $ 75 you can advocate voting rights for otters on three screens; Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest, for example.

If you want to expand your topic and insist on free speech for sodium-worshippers it is another $ 75 but you can be assured that it is money well spent. You see, while the postings are done by the Guild, they are in your name – it is a little arrangement we have with the internet service providers. You will seem to be awake and fighting 24 hours a day.

You may select your level of communication – from mild annoyance that just keeps repeating the same catchphrase all the way up to incandescent rage that uses obscene words in obscure languages. It’s all up to you. For a small extra fee you can have selected pictures added, though you won’t be allowed to show your shoulders.

Intellectual participation in the great questions of the times has never been easier. Arguments R Us.

PS: At Christmas you will receive a free box of Trollhouse cookies.


Heading Image: Bin Night

The Theme Park Of Our Dreams…A Modest Proposal


Those of you who are easily offended will enjoy the next six inches of copy. You will have every opportunity to go incandescent with rage. You may want to put a layer of paper towels down on the chair and ask the family to step out for an hour.

I want to propose theme parks for the world that allow us to fulfill our worst fantasies, rather than our best. (  Nine Flags To Hell, if you will. )

In the modern world we have all come to hate someone. They might be a different race, nationality, or religion – they might be a different economic class or adherents to a different political philosophy – whatever…we hate them. But we are constantly enjoined to bury our differences and love them and cherish them and…and…and it is load of cobblers. We hate them. The horrid thing about it is that we are not allowed to express our hate or do anything about it – it sits in us and festers.

Well I propose that we see a multi-national organisation set up a chain of theme parks throughout the world to provide an enriching experience for those who hate without allowing it to go overboard. As a social safety net it should be just about perfect.

Say you are in Turkey and hate Kurds. Have hated them for years. Will hate them forever. Well you go along to our registered theme park: KurdWorld…and you pay your $ 75 at the gate and are let into an authentic recreation of  a Kurdish village. Houses, public buildings, open spaces…as good as the real thing. And it is peopled by trained actors who portray Kurds. But the secret is that they are also skilled acrobats and stage performers. They are trained to be able to absorb blows and not come to harm. So you can wade into them with fists and cudgels until you stand panting with exhaustion. You get the satisfaction of beating up on them and subjecting them to ‘ misery ‘ with the reassurance that you cannot do any lasting harm.

Now the same applies to whites, blacks, Asians, Catholics, Jews, Muslims, Inuit, or any other division of mankind. You can hop in and whale away at Quakers, Mexicans, Liberals, Conservatives, or Germans to your heart’s content. Foam rubber weapons are available for hire at the gate and you can purchase disposable rubber gloves if you are afraid of getting any bodily fluids on you as you have fun.

Walt Disney never had it so good…mind you, if Walt had made a theme park where he could punch labour leaders and left-wing politicians he would probable still be going today. Fantasyland and Natureland were never this much fun!

For my part I am hoping that they will open a local theme park that allows me to beat up on pacifists. They’ve been responsible for all the peaces that we’ve been plagued with and it’s time they were made to pay for it. To the barricades!

Bait Me Daddy, Eight To The Bar


As the Right Evil Bastard of the Backstabbers Guild Of Australia I am often presented with appeals from members of the general public for redress against evildoers. This arises from what I feel to be a mis-understanding of the basic premise of the Guild. We are not here to protect you from your enemies. We are here to show you how to protect yourself…by destroying people BEFORE they become enemies. We are here to teach you how to murder your friends.

There are as many ways of doing this as there are Baskins-Robbins ice cream flavours – though most of what we preach is not as good as the salted caramel. If you are going to attack people one of the basic things you are going to have to learn, however, is how to protect yourself against countermeasures.

You are going to have to assume that everything you say will be noticed and that you will be called to account for this by either a legal body or the wider court of public opinion. You must secure your position beforehand by one of a number of ploys:

a. Play on age. Let people know that you are too young to be taken seriously before you attack them. If they respond you scurry behind your puberty and squall. Alternately, you work the ” I’m old and I don’t need to be nice to anyone anymore ” pedal as hard as you can. This is better done post-attack and you can then use pictures of Bea Arthur or Clint Eastwood to distract people.

b. Establish credentials with a ghostly third party. Claim to be religious and to enjoy the protection of divinity…even if the things you do are far from divine. At the very least you can say that you are merely repeating the teachings of whichever ancient legend is currently in fashion. Pick a legend that is not readily explainable.

c. Put a protective barrier of illness up and crouch behind it. This is the equivalent of setting up a shield on a battlefield and loading your  crossbow from behind it – sort of a mental pavise. You can paint what you like on the front: from anxiety to full-blown madness….whatever. You can even get away with physical ailments as long as they don’t show up on X-rays. The details are not important – what is vital is that you can duck behind it when someone shoots back.

d. Remember the old story-telling ruse – so often seen in Hollywood – that was invoked when an author ran out of ideas or painted his characters into such impossible plots that there was no way out. The publisher merely inserted ” And then he woke up and found it was all a dream…”. You can use this when caught out in some vileness – just say that it was all imagination and then tell people they have NO imagination or they would have seen that.

e. Dress oddly and act oddly for long enough that someone takes note. Then whenever you need to retreat from what you have said or done you can claim to be artistic. If you have a watercolour set you can claim to be an artist.

f. Never wade into an infantry assault when you can call in the artillery…or better yet, an air strike. When you want to be offensive or bigoted on social media, post other people’s reposts of whatever troublesome material you can find. It will still be nasty, but you’ll be wearing several layers of protection against being smirched by handling it. After all, it was just something you saw…

g. ” It was all a joke ” is one of the best quick throw-away excuses to try. In some cases it works, particularly if you accuse your now-enemy of having no sense of humour. It’s a dangerous defence though, as having cited humour, you are subject to it as well. Do not do this if your opponent has a ready wit – it will redound.

h. Can you cry? If you can you may be able to turn the tables on an opponent by the simple act of tearing up. Not so good if you are a nose-dribbler at the same time or experience the need to urinate. Pathos and bathos are too closely aligned.

Please be aware that there are also some standards connected to publishing – whether it is on the internet or in some more tangible form. Indeed, the electronic media is the more dangerous; anything said to your disadvantage may be stored for a thousand years and then trotted out to your embarrassment. And as it has a wider broadcast of good, it also has a larger spray of bad – and the subsequent penalty for that may be higher. Even if it only involves people seeing that you are a fool, your folly will be that much more evident.

All this having been said, it is still refreshing to see the number of Guild members who are prepared to go out there and defame, slander, and libel. It keeps the courts happy and the rest of us can concentrate on daily living. If there is the occasional fist in the teeth or writ in the mail, it os a small price to pay for demonocracy.