Class Antagonism

New phrase to you?

It was to me until a chance posting on Facebook introduced it . I suspect the cartoon that used the words was written closer to Pyongyang than Seoul, but it’s hard to tell these days. The person who ” shared ” the post may well be in the know. I’m frightened to ask in case I get a dialectic up my nose.

It looks as though the dear old communist ideology is still being pressed upon the masses, though other dear old ideologies are frowned upon. And the brainwash departments are still very much in business. It’s gone a bit past the poster columns and agitprop trains but they know that they still have a wide audience for ” virtuous socialism ” amongst the disaffected. I’ll bet the campuses are still packed with the true believers who are ready to shout down anyone else.

Are there nests of right wingers in opposition to the red end of the spectrum? I have noted the occasional one on Facebook, but not to the same extent. Are there secret societies? Are the beer halls still putsching?

Perhaps it’s time to start pushing the buttons; hide, unfollow, defriend, spam alert, etc. I can get all the scolding I want from physical friends and identifiable family – no need to import it from strangers.

 

It’s All A Conspiracy

And what a conspiracy. I’ve found leads to the New World Order, Old World Order, And Hungry Jack’s Lunchtime Bargain Order. The first two are unattractive but I am looking at the cheeseburger with interest.

Conspiracies are the flavour of the month, year, and possibly decade. We have them in all varieties and sizes – right-wing, left-wing, and the sticky bit in the middle as well. They are useful to pin blame, explain the inexplicable, and excuse our own failures.

I’ll amend that… the excuses are necessary for your failures. You are the reason we can’t have nice things. I suspected you all along but until I saw the ABC/CNN/FOX News/BBC/RT exposé on you and your kind I could not hate you precisely.

The internet is a wonderful resource. It can bring unease and accusation to us wherever we live and unlike the old business of printed books, it can be altered before our eyes. It has experts we never suspected and suspects we never thought of. If the devil or the mean girl in the sixth grade whispered in our ears it would not be half as effective as a cobbled-up construct hedged with advertisements for spinning tops and faux-leather luggage.

You must excuse me – I need to get back to the Karen and Sharon network and see which evil influence is dominating the world. No sense opposing the winner, eh?

Creative Baiting

For Master Baiters.

Some people are very good at what they do – embroidery, cooking, art, motor car maintenance. In the days of the medieval guilds they would have started as apprentices, become journeymen, and eventually progressed to being masters of their art or craft.

The art of angering people to mock them or to get them to support your political or religious view is known as baiting. The practitioners lay emotional or verbal traps for their opponents ( and most opponenetss are just supporters in waiting…) and try to make them fall into them. This can be as crude as name-calling or as sophisticated as an advertising agency campaign. Many effective baits are disguised as sensible statements that turn vicious at the end. Mein Kampf was full of this ploy.

” How would you feel if…” is one of the modern variations on the bait. It seeks to directly bypass thought and substitute emotion. There’s a good reason for this – thought is difficult to manipulate, but emotion is easy to steer. Once started, an emotional flood can wash away most thought, and once that has happened, the baiter can replace it with their opinion.

The Master Baiter will be careful not to go too far. Oh, I don’t mean too far in what they say – they might demand the destruction of the world in a sensible fashion with a straight face – but too far with the reaction of the victim. Once the target realises that they are not going to look good they may turn just away and deny the tormentor the pleasure. Or they may snap and attack the pest. This is the aim of many bullies who want to instigate a physical fight by taunts. But it can turn bad  – emotions sometimes steel the weakling far beyond what was expected, and the tables may be turned.

The safest course is to bite small, bite often, and bite a different part of the anatomy each time. No-one can scratch everywhere at once.

” Unaccustomed As I Am To Public Speaking…”

You can’t beat the classics. When you hear that one you know someone is going to get the beating they deserve. It might be the speaker or it might be the audience. It’s a 50/50 bet.

And it’s a sucker bet if you don’t know the person on the podium – or know how long they are going to be allowed to speak. That intro has been the portal to public speaking hell many times before…

It’s a fraught thing, too, for the speaker if they don’t know the audience. How many of them are good listeners? How many of them are as dumb as a bag of hammers. How many of them are packing sidearms? The speaker will want to know, or at least be closer to the door than they are.

The best bet for a speaker is to be frank, honest, and brief. They need not be funny, unless they’re doing the dinner show in a Catskill resort. And the very best insurance is to present a stock speech – to have done it before. Even if the speaker doesn’t not know what the hell they’re on about, like a Presidential candidate, if they’ve said before they’ll at least recognise the rhythm of their voice…as they lie shamelessly.

And then there is the applause. Speakers often mistake tumultuous applause as evidence that the audience loves them and agrees with them. Nothing of the sort -a big round of applause may erupt for the fact that they have come to the end, shut up, and can be taken outside to be tarred and feathered.

The best accolade for a serious speech is a breathless silence during the delivery –  for a comic one it is someone going into an uncontrollable laughing jag and being carted out of the room by Security. I have observed both from a podium.

And in conclusion…

Sexual Favours – The XXX – Rated Piñata

We’ve all read that term;” sexual favours  ” and thought we knew what it meant. Ditto ”  sexual harassment “, ” sexual content “, etc. I put it to you that we have all been remiss in our reading – there are far more sexual phrases that need to be incorporated into our daily conversation.

a.” Sexual healing “.*

It really does have a place in medical textbooks. If you have just been through a six-month course of antibiotics, surgical drainage, and splints, you are entitled to use the term ” sexual healing “. Otherwise you are just singing a rather drippy pop song.

Don’t sit near me, if you please…just in case.

b. ” Sexual Slave “.

Well we’re really into the Mills and Boone bodice ripping here, aren’t we. Try not to slaver when you say it.

c. ” Sexual Appliance ”

If you think we are talking about something in a plain paper wrapper, let me explain. Sexual appliances are large stainless steel or white enamel machines that do dishes, bake dinners, wash laundry, and dry clothing. They are referred to as ” sexual ” because people of any sex can operate them to make the house cleaner and the dinner more nutritious.

d. ” Sexual Politics ”

Wait till you see the picture on the ” How To Vote ” card…Cor…

*  “Sexual Heeling ” …now we’re getting somewhere. Is that a stiletto heel you’re wearing or are you just glad to see me…?

 

” I’m Just A Sex Object To You…”

No, Dear, you’re not. Not any more. Not for a long time. Not since you found Facebook.

I fully admit that I did think of you as a sex object – and treasured the sight, sound, and smell of you upon that basis. I longed to add feel to the list… but that was before I was presented with your posts on the electronic screen – in between the phishing memes and the advertisements for perfumed stump pullers. Once I could contemplate your thoughts and explore the workings of your mind, I changed my regard for you.

Now I do not look upon you you as a sex object. I regard you as a floating object.

You float between whichever political pressure group has most traction at the time. Between who has grabbed the national television coverage for the last five minutes and who will grab it for the next. Your thoughts are precious – as much for their virtue as for their rarity. And I long for the day when you will feel successful and triumphant – and will feel no more need to complain.

Like nirvana, armageddon, or the end of the works on the Mitchell Freeway, I never really expect to see this state of affairs blossom. But I need something to pray for.

 

The Celebrity Strip Stripped Naked

I read a number of comic strips every day – they are a wonderful antidote to the miseries of the news broadcasts. They do reflect these – comedy can be made out of tragedy. Some try harder than others…and some get it wrong.

”  Least I Could Do ” is a satirical strip detailing life from the point of view of a narcissistic young man in the USA. He has a splendid job, forgiving friends, and long-suffering relatives and partners. He is selfish, funny, and stupid from day to day.

The strip is written by one man, drawn by another, and marketed by a small team who tour comic conventions and sell all the merchandise that this sort of success produces. Normally I enjoy it and would pass most of its foibles by as legitimate humour.

Not today -The writer and the artist have conflated the service personnel of the US, Great Britain, and Canada who participated in the D-Day Normandy landings and the defeat of the Wehrmacht with the current band of political terrorists, Antifa.

Poor form, poor thinking, and poor taste. An unnecessary venture into politics by people who really should know better – the writer and the artist. They’ll sneer and jeer and start off on another smarmy theme shortly, using the comic strip character to mouth their opinions – but they have done the real WWII veterans no service  – nor have they rendered it to their poor torn country

Shame on them.

A Picture Isn’t Worth 1000 Words

Because frequently the picture is taken out of context and used to propagandise for some particular purpose. Don’t be shocked – there are people in the world who wish to force you to beliefs that you might otherwise find abhorrent – and they are not above making false shows to do it.

Of course they might also be trying to bring enlightenment and truth to you… but have been prevented by a stampede of unicorns… So they grab a picture from the internet, attach a jeering commentary, and ” share ” it to your social media page. You need not thank them for it, unless you are in the habit of being polite to tape worms.

I must admit, shamefacedly, that I have done this as well. I have poked fun at dictatorial regimes by seizing upon their propaganda posters and re-titling them. I dare not show my face in a number of Asian capitols for fear of the thought police. Come to think of it, I need to stop away from any number of friend’s houses for the same reason.

Can you write 1000 words? Can you write them to support a political or religious belief? You probably can if you went through the secondary or tertiary education system. There you were given assignments to think about and set essays to write in support of your opinions. You would not have been rewarded for just clipping a picture and writing a smarmy caption. If you could exercise discipline and follow the school model then, you can do it now.

By all means promote your favourite cause or rail at your favourite dictator – but do it with your own words and not with those of others. And especially do not try to do it with video innuendo. That’s cheap without being cheerful.

” It’s All A Mucking Fadhouse “

That feeling of exasperation when you are surrounded by people all trying to be cooler than each other – and the end result is the ambient temperature drops dramatically. And these desperate social actors live on drama…

I was always a conservative and repressed little fellow. Primary school and high school saw me dressed as my mother commanded and – to be honest – there was not a lot of sartorial splendour in rural Canada in the 1950’s. You could be well-dressed in a flannel shirt and jeans. The delightful thing for me is that this is still the case 70 years later.

You were also not encouraged to be either high, wide nor handsome in your opinions and speech. This may still be the case in Canada, though you are allowed to be scornful of the American President as long as he is not a Democrat or coloured. Hey, Canada has some standards, even if they are double…

But getting back to conservatism…it need not be a bad thing. It’s just a matter of context. No-one really wants an eye surgeon or dentist who is wild and cutting-edge radical – particularly when you’re their their patient. And few of us welcome return-to-the basics airline pilots who always fly at 500 ft. and stick their fingers out the window to see which way the wind is blowing. We reserve these things for their natural place.

Likewise we might well do with a politician who is not continuously at the barricades – particularly if they have no idea in which direction to throw their paving stone. A person who is not driven by popular shrieks from the mob is helpful. Even the shrieking radicals appreciate them, as they provide convenient targets for mindless abuse.

So calm down a little. You’ll still be able to subvert western civilisation and look kewl but you can do it at a less frenetic pace. And better dressed.

From Lively Imagination To Deadly Earnest

Or ” How To Clear A Cocktail Party Faster Than A Police Raid “.

You’ve all seen motion pictures of the 1920’s when the police raid a speakeasy – the black marias hauling away the patrons of the saloon while the heroine struggles with the comic cop. Well you can achieve the same effect at the next party you attend, even though it isn’t Prohibition. Just follow these simple steps:

a. Locate a focus. She, and it will often be a she, will be of a certain economic class and live in a certain suburb. Age will not be important, though you’d be wise not to ask it. If there are no females present you’ll still be able to find someone who will be able to act as a focus of trouble. They’ll also live in that same suburb.

b. Wait until the focus has had half a glass of sweet wine. This is to loosen the neurones. They are possibly rattling in their bearings anyway, but you never can tell.

c. Ask if they have had their shot of flu vaccine. Stand back and cover your drink in case they explode.

d. Wait until they are surrounded by attackers and defenders and the noise level rises.  A vaccination fight is a fearsome thing. Station yourself beside the closed exit door.

e. When angry people start clamouring to leave, charge them money to pass through the door.

f. Bank the proceeds and keep a note of the total for tax purposes.

If you don’t want to talk about vaccines -and some people are genuinely phobic about needles – then you can substitute natural gas exploration or wetlands or race relations. They’ll all have an opinion and if there are 50 guests there will be 53 different ones. Double that in certain circles.

You may need a larger cash box…