Archive for September, 2009

Quote of the day

September 28, 2009

I suppose if one can bury bad news, one can also, conversely, unearth amazing news. Truly, this middanġeard is full of marvels, even now.

Fugitive Ink

The only person I know who would include middanġeard and charmingly forget to include the translation in a blog post. 🙂

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BBC smoking crack

September 28, 2009

Someone at the BBC has overdone the magic mushrooms or taken a puff on a crack pipe if this report of the German elections is anything to go by.

Also possible, though less likely, is the Christian Democrats teaming up with both the Free Democrats and the Green Party – creating a so-called Jamaica coalition of black, yellow and green.

And what about the reds – the Social Democrats? Well, their candidate, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, the current foreign minister, is dreaming of a red-green government, in a tie-up with the Green Party. That is the combination that led Germany under Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder between 1998 and 2005. But opinion polls suggest that neither red nor green will get enough support to make that possible this time.

They could try to persuade the Free Democrats to join them, in a red-yellow-green government, a so-called traffic-light coalition.

I take it the drugs wore off a little, because we then get a disclaimer:

But the Free Democrats claim they are not interested.

Speaking of traffic lights, I hope whoever came up with this entertaining fiction didn’t drive home without having a lie down followed by several cups of coffee.

Tough sanctions threatened against Iran

September 26, 2009

Violet Elizabeth Bott, the UN Secretary General, announced a terrible sanction regime against Iran over its covert nuclear weapons programme:

“I’ll thcream and thcream ’till I’m thick.”

The wisdom of crowds. Ouch!

September 23, 2009

It’s just as well I retain something of a sense of humour, even if it seems to go unrecognised…

Changes in your ranks:

#14 most attractive (lost 1 place)
#14 nicest smelling (lost 1 place)
#19 person with the best sense of humor (lost 1 place)
#20 best catch (lost 1 place)
#20 most enviable (lost 1 place)

From the Compare People application on Facebook. I’m hoping this is some jealous guy.

“In the long run we’re all dead”

September 21, 2009

It seems that book burning is necessary for the public good.

First there was the embarrassment caused by the Italian translator to Karl Marx’s Das Kapital Volume III (a certain Benito Mussolini, who was NEVER a Socialist, NEVER, NEVER, NEVER…). Clearly the forgeries must be destroyed.

Now it transpires that the very name of the General Theory of Money and Credit (which inspire the policy adopted by the present governments of the U.K. and the U.S.A.) was inspired by National Socialism.

This is a translation of part of John Maynard Keynes’ introduction to the 1936 German edition of his book:

The theory of aggregate production, which is the point of the following book, nevertheless can be much easier adapted to the conditions of a totalitarian state than the theory of production and distribution of a given production put forth under conditions of free competition and a large degree of laissez-faire. This is one of the reasons that justifies the fact that I call my theory a general theory.

Obviously, this should be checked for accuracy.

But I ask myself why none of the authorized biographies of Keynes mention the publication of this book nearly FOUR YEARS into the Third Reich?

I conclude that the deliberately evil claim that the long-term harmful consequences of Keynesian economics don’t matter because “in the long run, we’re all dead,” is no fluke.

Keynes was wrong about inflation and credit, both practically and ethically. I hope he was wrong about Hell too.

I enclose the original German text for interest.

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Lest we forget…September 12

September 12, 2009

Today the continental breakfast was invented. It’s the only day of the year that I have a croissant and coffee (with milk) at home.

September 12th 1683 is the date of the raising of the Siege of Vienna by the Ottoman Empire, which represented the turning point for Turkish expansion in Central and Eastern Europe.

It is said that the armies of Poles, Germans and Austrians that drove the Turks and allies (notably some Hungarians) from the siege camp found curious crescent-shaped pastries and coffee. A Capucin monk is supposed to have added cream to soften the bitter taste of the unfamiliar dark hot drink to create capuccino.

I’m sure the more literate Turks celebrate the Battles of Manzikaert (1071), Myriocephalum (1176) and Hattin (1187)*. I don’t suppose, however, that they found anything from their defeated opponents of such lasting gastronomic influence as the capuccino and croissant breakfast.

* I apologise to Turkish readers wishing to celebrate the exact dates. I don’t have them to hand.

Bad boy?!

September 12, 2009

What to make of this from Compare Friends on Facebook?

Changes in your ranks:

#12 most attractive (gained 1 place)
#13 nicest smelling (gained 1 place)
#16 person with the best sense of humor (gained 1 place)
#18 best mannered (lost 1 place)
#19 best catch (gained 1 place)

Moral: ditch the holding doors for ladies, use nicer deodorant, tell better jokes.