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…


A Modest Apology

I wish to apologise for a recent Facebook post that ridiculed Facebook posts. I have been brought to realise that one may ridicule the President of the United States, the Prime Minister of Australia, or the Premier of Russia ( or is that President…? Whatever…) but one does not hold the most popular social media network on the planet up to ridicule. Not if one knows what is good for one…

My legal adviser has urged me to throw myself upon the mercy of the Court Of The Internet and plead for a reduced sentence. Okay, Manny, if you think that would help. Here goes:

I’m sorry that I laughed at the people who share things on Facebook. From early childhood we have been told that it is good to share. Fine advice, when it comes to making 7-year-olds cut a birthday cake into even portions, but not quite so good when the sharing involves foolish opinions and political propaganda. But who are we to say what is foolish? The opinions that are hawked about like broadsheet ballads by People Who Sit At Home may be correct, for all we know. They are not backed up by any personal experience or practical demonstration, but then neither is the selling spiel for a washing machine by some sales clerk in Harvey Norman – they just sell you the box full of white goods. Perhaps the political opinions of formerly successful politicians can wash clothes as well as minds…

Enough, Manny? No? What do you mean, No? Jesus, Manny….Okay, Okay, Moses, Manny, how much grovelling am I expected to do? I’m not Johnny Depp, here…

Take Two: I apologise unreservedly for laughing at the people who share things on Facebook. I realise that they do this for the good of the planet and my soul. I am infinitely grateful for the tired anti-Trump memes…


Manny, why are you making that noise? I’m doing the best I can here. I haven’t mentioned Nerium face grease once in the whole apology, and at no time have I yanked the Meminist’s chain. I’m being as good as gold. With a bit of luck I will get through the whole weekend without being unfriended by anyone. What do you mean, you’re crossing me off your list? Crosses, Manny…?

Featured Image: Voting Booths for the constituency of Facebook.


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…

Make-Your-Own-Meme Kit For Sale – Hardly Used

I am putting my Paul Hamlyn Make-Your-Own-Meme Kit up for sale on Gumtree next week. I purchased it when the social media craze started with the intention of changing the world. As it is now I am not sure I could change my underwear with it.

Oh, the kit is all there, and the memes have hardly been use. Many of them are wrapped in their original prejudices. The right buyer could have hours of fun with it. I had minutes…

It may have been my failure to research my market. Most of my Facebook friends hate Donald Trump so the patriotic memes supporting his campaign never did well. The Clinton ones fared a little better until the would-be Facebook Democrats realised that she couldn’t get elected for dog catcher, and then they all went silent. I would have put out Bernie Sanders memes but here in Perth we used to have a hamburger joint called Bernie’s and everything I wrote just seems to have the odour of fried onions and ketchup.

The feel-good inspirational ones were actually a lot of fun to write – though to be honest most of the ones I posted were taken out of pamphlets that people on street corners hand out. I always take a pamphlet, as I feel sorry for them.  Mind you, when they get enough money together to buy a computer and start to bombard me with the same crap in emails I could cheerfully strangle them.

I have tried to get our cat to be amusing. Or dour. Or anything. I am fairly well convinced that he does not have a mind, so there’s not a lot of theatrical value to be got. Mind you, I am pretty sure he would have voted for Clinton, because he does like the smell of fish.

The memes I wrote that seem to have done the best, if the writs are anything to judge by, are the ones encouraging class warfare, race hatred, and social anarchy. I’ve ensured myself against legal repercussions by putting a smiling emoji in the vilest ones and then writing ” Just sayin’ ” and ” Geddit ” at the end. Plus I have registered this computer as belonging to the Dalai Lama if anyone comes looking.

So the meme kit is up for sale. I will also consider trading it for a well-made picketers’ sign and a box of crayons. No sense dropping the Democrat college market entirely. Something may turn up.


” 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.


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.

Fomenting Revolution For Fun And Profit


The third installment of the Backstabbers Guild of Australia’s advice for the forlorn takes things to a more serious level. We’re gonna make red revolution and drown the streets in blood. If you get a bit queasy at the Red Cross when they take a pint of O+ve you may want to opt for the lite version – where we use root beer instead.

Now communist revolution has been advocated for a long time by people who have not done it yet but who can certainly tell you that they want to. Or not, in case there has been a falling-out with the local chapter of the ” Occupy Student Loans ” movement and someone has nicked the donation tin. In this case they are fully justified in postponing the ever-glorious day of revolution of the masses until their Mom sends them more money and some fresh laundry.

The old-time communists were a hardy bunch who would meet under the most difficult conditions in the homes of movie writers and actors. On some occasions they were prepared to drink water instead of gin, which shows real dedication. Unfortunately they ran foul of the FBI, Congress, and the meaner element of the trade unions and went out of business some years ago. The attempt to revive the brand as socialism did not really take off – it has proved hard to sell to the older customer. They may have to invent a new name for it – ” demoism ” has a nice ring to it, as does ” cratism “, but the consensus amongst the brand consultants here at the BGA is that combining the two will just lead to being thrown out again. The title is still open.

It will not be hard to get guns for the coming revolution, as the US has a great many of these. Unfortunately a lot of them are in the hands of people who do not cotton to communism or socialism. Indeed, that is a good tip…if the revolutionaries hear someone saying the phrases ” We-uns don’t cotton to communists. ” or ” We’d admire to have y’all to supper.” they should not draw out a gun. It is not likely to be useful at all…

Likewise it would be advisable to wait until spring before camping on the steps of the dean’s office and demanding that he resign in favour of an All-Student Coalition. Winter on the steppes has never been a good time to campaign…

They might cheer up. They can always go see the latest Michael Moore movie. He’s in business as a professional complainer again after being an irrelevant berk for years.