Damn Puritans

April 3, 2008

Max Mosley, the 67yr old head of the FIA, has been outed by a British newspaper who got video of him enjoying a sado-masochistic orgy with 5 prostitutes- playing out Nazi concentration-camp scenes with him as both guard and victim.

There is a lot of hue and cry about this right now and, of course, the papers dredged up that his father was a fascist and right-wing nutter who had a certain Mr. Hitler at his wedding. I wouldn’t want to be held responsible for my father’s behaviour. Anyway, fascism is ‘in’ right now: look at the USA under GW.

What, exactly, are they angry about? None of the papers I read state what country this actually happened in so we don’t know if prostitution there was illegal (as it still is in Britain) or whether it happened in a country where it is illegal to show the Nazi flag or symbol in public… in which case I don’t think Mr. Mosely is in trouble anyway as it all took place in a dungeon not in the middle of a Berlin Shopping Mall. It might have been important enough for a news story, I suppose, if the women had turned out to be real Nazi’s intent on recovering the Holy Grail and setting the Nazi Empire back on course but all early reports indicate not.

It’s not like Mr. Mosley only tried on the Nazi uniform and played guard, either. This is a man who wanted to try both sides of the game and played for a little submission as a victim, too. This is really not a big deal. Really. Yet the Prince of Bahrain has asked him not to attend the Bahrain Grand Prix and some people are calling for him to resign. What a load of old tosh.

I think, though, that in all this Puritanical frenzy we are all missing something terribly important here: the financial windfall that Viagra has brought to the prostitution industry. Here was a man who could take on not just one, not two, but five women at the age of 67! At the tender age of 35 I would feel less than confident at my ability to take on a whole handful of the opposite sex but here is a pensioner knocking them away like it’s Sunday afternoon croquet (with Nazi’s) and then relaxing afterwards with a cup of tea.

I imagine that all his father could have done with 5 female Nazi’s at 67 would have been play croquet and he probably did.

It’s really time we got over all this stuff about people’s sex lives. Unless someone is hurting someone else (who doesn’t want to be hurt) or is preying on those deemed incapable of making choices for themselves through age, mental incapacity or being President of the USA they really need to be left alone unless they post it all on YouTube.

And this prostitution thing being illegal has got to stop, too. What a man and a woman and another man and a midget in a dress carrying a squirt gun filled with oil do to earn money in their own time with their own bodies is their business unless, again, they decide to post it on YouTube.

Go Max!

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Bi-cycle

November 1, 2007

A man in the UK has been placed on the sexual offenders list with, note, rapists and paedophiles for “having sex with a bicycle”. When I first heard of this I thought “sure, okay, you don’t go around doing that sort of thing in public- it can put people off their lunch.”

But it wasn’t. In public I mean. It was in a locked hotel room*. Assuming the bicycle was his I really do not see what the hell this has to do with the court system. He has been convicted of “sexual breach of the peace.” Unless he was being particularly loud or the bicycle had not been oiled in an awfully long time I do not see this at all.

What people do in private is their own business, surely, unless it causes harm to others. Unless he can be proven to be deliberately luring the cleaners who came across him** into the room for an audience I fail to see what he did wrong. Besides, if he wanted an audience simply filming it and placing it on YouTube will do the business.

Perhaps the old fella just needs a bit of education in the ways of the modern world. I would like to ask him, though: are bi-cycles hotter than uni-cycles, just like women?

*From The Telegraph:

She said: “They knocked on the door several times and there was no reply.

“They [the cleaners] used a master key to unlock the door and they then observed the accused wearing only a white T-shirt, naked from the waist down.

“The accused was holding the bike and moving his hips back and forth as if to simulate sex.”

Both witnesses, who were extremely shocked, notified the hotel manager, who in turn alerted the police.

** sorry

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=/news/2007/10/26/nsex126.xml

It’s an old phrase but I have, in my life, failed to find a better combination of just 3 experiences. These three most definitely add up to more than the whole.

Analysing it each of the things kick up one sure-fire flag that they are fun. Plenty of people disapprove of them. But it’s the combination that works incredibly well. Replace drugs, for instance, with yoghurt and it all kind of falls apart.

Or, alteratively, sex, drugs and Yanni… it would need to be a lot of drugs. Going to the Post Office, Drugs and Rock ‘n Roll lacks a certain something although it might make an amusing story later. Leaving sex out of the three is just ludicrous anyway.

Sex, Caring for the Elderly and Rock ‘n Roll somehow lacks some of the joi de vivre that drugs bring to the party and could get you in trouble if anyone filmed it… Although there is the possibility of stealing the drugs from the elderly but that just takes us back to Sex, Drugs and Rock ‘n Roll, anyway.

Trying to knock up another three that more usually go together and offer the same level of excitement doesn’t seem to work either. Daytime TV, Ironing and Crisps, for instance, doesn’t compare terribly well. A movie, popcorn and loud people two rows back annoying you doesn’t come close either. Not even a little.

And let’s not forget that there are so many variables in Sex Drugs and Rock ‘n Roll that you are unlikely to run out and get bored before you die of an overdose, syphilis or a dislocated Tibia*. So, no loss there, then.

The only true leeway does appear to be in the selection of music although Enya or any one- man- band is always a mistake, especially live. He always stares. Enya would just send everyone to go into a coma, and that’s what the drugs are for. Funk would probably work, too, as would Latin but it would be important to match the music up to the right drugs.

Remember, sex between 2 people is a beautiful thing, sex between 3 is fantastic!

There is a reason what was promoted in the 70s has lasted through the test of over 30 years. Admittedly, we laid off the oily hair after a short while because it sucked but they couldn’t get everything right, could they? We owe a lot to a generation that reminded us, after all the crap of the Victorian era, what partying was all about.

*- a town in Sudan, I think.

I have been waiting for a psychological backlash to the most shallow generation in history: the tweeny label- whores from hell. What we may come to see as the “bling” generation.

Sucked into the advertising mire more than any generation in history. People have sought guidance and self- definition through the ages from Drugs, Religions, Warlords, Pacifists, Prophets, the Famous and the Fatuous. This was the first to start to look to possessions for guidance. The pendulum always swings back and forth and, as usual, at the tip of the conservative end of the swing was an annoying war that finally sends the pendulum back. It has been building, though, for quite some time and just needed (mixing my metaphors badly) a trigger.

I remember well this from fight club, Tyler Durden: Man, I see in fight club the strongest and smartest men who’ve ever lived. I see all this potential, and I see squandering. God damn it, an entire generation pumping gas, waiting tables; slaves with white collars. Advertising has us chasing cars and clothes, working jobs we hate so we can buy shit we don’t need. We’re the middle children of history, man. No purpose or place. We have no Great War. No Great Depression. Our Great War’s a spiritual war… our Great Depression is our lives. We’ve all been raised on television to believe that one day we’d all be millionaires, and movie gods, and rock stars. But we won’t. And we’re slowly learning that fact. And we’re very, very pissed off.

Born in the 70’s I have been through the swing away from the Love, Liberalism and Peace of the late 60s and early 70s to the money- orientated conservatism, large hair and bad pastel suits of the early 80s, through the grunge gender anonymity and unshaven women of the late 80s and early 90s and on to the vicious capitalist label feeding frenzy of the turn of the century.

This global warming thing we finally noticed (I did a school project on it in 1984- took the governments of the world 23 yrs to catch up to a student who spent less time in class than George W. does at work), of course, will not be stopped and I wonder how, at the tip of the green touchy- feely renaissance the other end of society will spin things and what they will place on the table to get society to start the swing back towards conservatism.

Will recreational space flight be it? Immersive computer games to get away from the mess when people get exhausted from over-caring? Or are they smart enough to have worked out enough ways to market the new green movement in such a way that they can profit from it? I think so. I take all 3 but in reverse order.

Looked at dispassionately neither side of the swing has any better claim to sanity. From the one side of rich warmongers and authority to the poor vegan touchy- feely side there is plenty of nonsense. But if there is nonsense to be had I prefer the pendulum at the point where we stop caring too much about possessions, allow dull people to take drugs to make them more interesting, stop caring too much about our jobs and start enjoying our sexuality more but women still shave their armpits.

Pools have a shallow end and a deep end. So, sometimes, do I.

BAD MEDICINE

The biggest reason that statistical medicine in general and AIDS specifically really steams my boat is the situation in Africa. In Africa today if you die of an AIDS-related illness you are classified as an AIDS death whether you have been diagnosed with HIV or not. Really. Even in South Africa with a first world infrastructure this is true.

The reason is not insidious. It is just too costly to test a person who is already dead of, say, pneumonia for HIV so it is just classified as an AIDS death. Statistics from AIDS related deaths are then extrapolated to provide assumed HIV infection rates amongst the rest of the population. That’s why the statistics are so high in Africa (and we use a different, less reliable test more likely to show false positives- because it’s cheaper).

There are no reliable statistics that show the death rate as a percentage of population in Africa has increased from disease in the last 20 years. The reason is simple: there are no reliable long-term statistics in Africa. Period. Again the closest you get is South Africa post 1994 when we got our first properly democratic government (hopefully the USA and China will follow our example soon). Even then statistics are not close to properly reliable until, perhaps, 2000 onward.

The biggest killers in South Africa are still Cancer and Heart Disease. The same as the rest of the world. I do advocate the promotion of condoms, especially in those who get lucky a lot, to prevent the spread of diseases but AIDS drugs are expensive on a continent that has much larger problems.

People in Africa need houses. People in Africa are starving. People in Africa are being massacred by brutal regimes. Yet there is no profit in attending to these needs so they do not get addressed. Do you provide medicine to one person with HIV or feed 20? Do you try and save one person from AIDS or do you save 10 children from being turned into killers?

The money put into AIDS goes straight back to the USA and Europe via pharmaceutical companies. Money put into housing, food aid, debt relief, or encouraging democracy and education does not. It only benefits that country.

For anyone out there who thinks Africa creates it’s own problems I have for you this to say. Countries with no mineral wealth in Africa, almost always, are peaceful. If you have nothing the developed and developing world wants you end up in a war only when armies are ousted from one of the countries that do and are looking for more soldiers.

The son of former British Prime Minister, Margaret Thatcher, pled guilty recently to a charge of trying to overthrow an African government (Ivory Coast I think) to try and get that country’s mineral rights. He was caught trying to flee South Africa after it all went wrong.

I kid you not at all.

I have been meaning to write a piece on statistical medicine for a while now. Since I just got a comment on my post “Should we all be worried by the HIV-AIDS hypothesis?” and also since much of the marketing and, more disturbingly, research into AIDS is done via statistical medicine I thought now might be the time.

I have spilt this into two parts the first is not my writing but two other texts I copied for my own interest some time ago and do not know exactly who to attribute them to.

One is a real medical study showing that “Leos” are 15% more likely to be admitted to hospital with gastric bleeding and “Sagittarians” are 38% more likely than others to land up there because of a broken arm. The second is a flippant piece about the dangers of bread. It is thought-provoking nonetheless.

WHY STATISTICAL MEDICINE IS DANGEROUS, TEXT1 (comedy):

!!! BREAD IS DANGEROUS !!!

Research on bread indicates that:

1. More than 98 percent of convicted felons are bread users.
2. Fully HALF of all children who grow up in bread-consuming households score below average on standardized tests.
3. In the 18th century, when virtually all bread was baked in the home, the average life expectancy was less than 50 years; infant mortality rates were unacceptably high; many women died in childbirth; and diseases such as typhoid, yellow fever, and influenza ravaged whole nations.
4. More than 90 percent of violent crimes are committed within 24 hours of eating bread.
5. Bread is made from a substance called “dough.” It has been proven that as little as one pound of dough can be used to suffocate a mouse. The average American eats more bread than that in one month!
6. Primitive tribal societies that have no bread exhibit a low incidence of cancer, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s disease, and osteoporosis.
7. Bread has been proven to be addictive. Subjects deprived of bread and given only water to eat begged for bread after as little as two days.
8. Bread is often a “gateway” food item, leading the user to “harder” items such as butter, jelly, peanut butter, and even cold cuts.
9. Bread has been proven to absorb water. Since the human body is more than 90 percent water, it follows that eating bread could lead to your body being taken over by this absorptive food product, turning you into a soggy, gooey bread-pudding person.
10. Newborn babies can choke on bread.
11. Bread is baked at temperatures as high as 400 degrees Fahrenheit! That kind of heat can kill an adult in less than one minute.
12. Most American bread eaters are utterly unable to distinguish between significant scientific fact and meaningless statistical babbling.

In light of these frightening statistics, it has been proposed that the following bread restrictions be made:

1. No sale of bread to minors.
2. A nationwide “Just Say No To Toast” campaign, complete celebrity TV spots and bumper stickers.
3. A 300 percent federal tax on all bread to pay for all the societal ills we might associate with bread.
4. No animal or human images, nor any primary colours (which may appeal to children) may be used to promote bread usage.
5. The establishment of “Bread-free” zones around schools.

WHY STATISTICAL MEDICINE IS DANGEROUS, TEXT2 (actual study):

PEOPLE born under the astrological sign of Leo are 15% more likely to be admitted to hospital with gastric bleeding than those born under the other 11 signs. Sagittarians are 38% more likely than others to land up there because of a broken arm. Those are the conclusions that many medical researchers would be forced to make from a set of data presented to the American Association for the Advancement of Science by Peter Austin of the Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences in Toronto. At least, they would be forced to draw them if they applied the lax statistical methods of their own work to the records of hospital admissions in Ontario, Canada, used by Dr Austin.

Dr Austin, of course, does not draw those conclusions. His point was to shock medical researchers into using better statistics, because the ones they routinely employ today run the risk of identifying relationships when, in fact, there are none. He also wanted to explain why so many health claims that look important when they are first made are not substantiated in later studies.

The confusion arises because each result is tested separately to see how likely, in statistical terms, it was to have happened by chance. If that likelihood is below a certain threshold, typically 5%, then the convention is that an effect is “real”. And that is fine if only one hypothesis is being tested. But if, say, 20 are being tested at the same time, then on average one of them will be accepted as provisionally true, even though it is not.

In his own study, Dr Austin tested 24 hypotheses, two for each astrological sign. He was looking for instances in which a certain sign “caused” an increased risk of a particular ailment. The hypotheses about Leos’ intestines and Sagittarians’ arms were less than 5% likely to have come about by chance, satisfying the usual standards of proof of a relationship. However, when he modified his statistical methods to take into account the fact that he was testing 24 hypotheses, not one, the boundary of significance dropped dramatically. At that point, none of the astrological associations remained.

Unfortunately, many researchers looking for risk factors for diseases are not aware that they need to modify their statistics when they test multiple hypotheses. The consequence of that mistake, as John Ioannidis of the University of Ioannina School of Medicine, in Greece, explained to the meeting, is that a lot of observational health studies—those that go trawling through databases, rather than relying on controlled experiments—cannot be reproduced by other researchers. Previous work by Dr Ioannidis, on six highly cited observational studies, showed that conclusions from five of them were later refuted. In the new work he presented to the meeting, he looked systematically at the causes of bias in such research and confirmed that the results of observational studies are likely to be completely correct only 20% of the time. If such a study tests many hypotheses, the likelihood its conclusions are correct may drop as low as one in 1,000—and studies that appear to find larger effects are likely, in fact, simply to have more bias.

So, the next time a newspaper headline declares that something is bad for you, read the small print. If the scientists used the wrong statistical method, you may do just as well believing your horoscope.

Part two to follow…

Looking at porn…

February 17, 2007

A friend of mine, one who has known me for years and is greatly aware (and very forgiving) of my failings in social basics like remembering the name of the person I am talking/ writing to (sorry again, Max) once paid me a huge compliment. She said to me that she found me amusing for two reasons. First was the way I could take the disgusting/ immoral/ rude and the intellectual/ scientific/ philosophical and blend them into the same sentence without any apparent effort and the second, connected, reason was that I brought the analytical thoughts to porn and pornographic thoughts to analysis*.

porngraph.jpgThe reason I bring this up is the graphic you (internet willing) see here. On the surface it looks amusing so you read it for a few seconds. At this point is where most normal people (the ones with families, friends, pets, intelligence, lives, jobs and so on) would move on with the appropriate items from the aforementioned list.

That I don’t just move on is, in fact, probably at least part of the reason I find myself unfettered by most of the things on that list and instead find myself musing over the accuracies or inaccuracies in the graph at hand.

Is, for instance, the curve projection on horse penises seen really viable? As a fan of sex and a sometimes far-too-liberated human being I do have to call that into question. In fact, I did the next thing no-one in their right mind would do: I decided to research it.

It turns out, whether on the broader internet or whether surfing the porn highways horse penis is actually very, very hard to come by without forking over cash. Which I assume is something that no-one actually does for internet porn considering how much is available free. The most reliable place to catch a glimpse is on veterinarian websites, chinese take-away menus and horse jumping competitions. So I would have to say this graph has some flaws and, with my newfound research information at hand, I can tell you that horse penises should be long, straight and at a slightly erect or ascending angle to be most properly represented. On the graph**.

There were a few other notable errors or inconsistencies, but only 2 worth mentioning. The respect of friends graph is patently absurd and the dip an unscientific assumption up there with creationism and string theory***. Assuming this person started with friends in the first place- the friends that would stick around once the porn obsession levels got so high that answering the front door with trousers around the ankles and a raging stiffy- even for the pizza man, becomes ‘de rigeur’, obviously have no standards and so their respect would not decrease a jot. The levels of available friends would follow the curve of the graph, however, with a small but sharp turn upwards when the soul in question finally joins a support group for both the porn addicted and traumatised pizza men.

Finally there is the girlfriends curve which might well be applicable in Utah, Quebec or Austria. I cannot say for sure. But it is most likely the intellectual product of either a Tibetan Monk, a nun, an 8-year old or a hermit living on a desert island, cut off from the world for the past 20 years (which would beg the question- where did he learn to use photoshop?) and probably wearing some sort of grass skirt with bugs in it. Oh, or a girl who has never had a boyfriend or an orgasm. You see, a certain amount of porn and the realted activities is necessary for a male to not, entirely, lose his mind. No porn and no girlfriend combined together decreases your chance of meeting a girl and saying more than 12 words to her before getting into a hopeless, complicated tangle and making a mess of yourself.

In actuality, societies where porn is still illegal and only available on the black market are notorious for odd arrests of males trying to stick their penises into anything at all. Streets abound with men with their dicks stuck in post boxes, telephone coin return slots, rotating doors, squid, car windows and, on sundays, choir boys.

I do grant that the amount of porn any man will admit to watching, no matter how much he does, is (as represented) static- except when his mother is in the room which we can discount merely as a statistical anomaly and an attempt to save on the whole Freudian analysis thing.

jester

*- the coversational use of the word, not the American use. Unless your analyist is hot.

**- those three words are like doing a drumroll at the end of a joke: if you need them either it wasn’t funny or your audience is dumb. Either way they don’t help and should be left out at all costs.

***- I like the theory, but it’s still absurd.

Modern Philosophy

February 14, 2007

My other site dictum.wordpress.com, has just published it’s first philosophical paper. For anyone who reads my drivel but does not know about it a basic synopsis here, copied from the front page:

Ever felt like all your taught behaviours didn’t feel right? Ever been surprised at your thoughts and how they differ from what you have been told you were meant to be thinking? Fantastic, welcome to the club. You are a human being of the 21st Century brought up on philosophies created by mad old men, many sporting beards and all with no real friends who have been deliberately putting the wind up society over the past 4000 years (or thereabouts).

The philosophy is based on a public vote on whether people relate to quotes or dictum (authoratative pronouncements) from famous people we might actually like if we met them. Mae West. Hemmingway. Ghandi. Oscar wilde. Charile Sheen. etc…

The first paper is appropriate to February 14th, dealing with sex and relationships.

jester

Modern Sex (pt3)

January 31, 2007

brigitte-bardot_tummy.jpg

I am 34. I can program a 14-day video timer in seconds. I can plug in a modern entertainment system in minutes. It takes me only hours to assemble IKEA furniture. I know how to use power tools. I can set up a computer network, build a house and solar generator, sew on a button, drive a washing machine or iron and make a women I know, and sometimes ones I don’t, come to orgasm… so I am fairly familiar with complicated equipment.

The porn revolution has brought sexual technique to a whole new generation. We are, as societies, better at it, younger than ever before. More and more the abnormal is becoming normal and rather than all this taking the romance away from sex, the added knowledge has bred confidence. Confidence is sexy- and sexy never hurt romance one iota.

Conservatism in the USA and annoying, fatuous young girls claiming abstinence to make their pious, pedarastic* fathers practically explode with delight only serve to make the rest of us want to get laid more often. The vatican in deciding to make a Nazi Pope, rather than a black man, entrenching conservatism and consequently refusing to come to it’s senses and allow use of birth control and little pre-marital fooling about only adds to the sinful excitement for god-botherers everywhere. By the way, men out there. The sin of ‘spilling your seed’ also known as ‘having a quick one off the wrist’ is just as big a sin as pre-marital sex, adultery and incest (they are not, actually, officially rated in levels) so you may as well just go for it. Have a ball. As it were.

Not to say, with all this newfound freedom, that women have lost the art of the flirt and the game. Not so, they are better at it, more assured of themselves and their desirability than ever before. With- in the larger more cosmopolitan cities at least, less and less fear of negative societal stigmas and labels.

So with everyone out there riding, squirting, bonding, buggering, swinging, felching, shagging, fellating, rim-jobbing, dressing up in latex and leather and giving each other the old pearl necklace what do we do next? Where do we go? The answers are, simply: whatever we want, wherever we want. The new sexual revolution is out there and waiting for you, possibly in a dark alleyway. That is, it’s there for the taking if you decide that you actually just don’t give a rat’s arse what people think and go for it.

Let’s face it, what with cloning technology and test-tube babies- in a couple of years you won’t be shagging to have children any more anyway. One egg, a few thousand enthusiastic sperm and a small amount of caffiene in a test tube should see you right. The fetus can gestate in a shoebox under the bed and you: you youthful, attractive mother-to-be won’t have to wander around with back-ache for 6 months craving peanut butter, cress and mustard sandwiches; and can avoid the cost of that tummy tuck and personal trainer afterwards. You can jump straight in to not speaking to your husband ever again and having an affair like everyone else.

Perhaps one final step is needed, though, for proper liberation. It is a step away from the emaciated female clothes horse as any sort of female ideal. A movement back toward curves and a fuller figure. I am not talking “three-happy-meals-a-day” size but also not “I’ll-just-have-a-salad and throw up in toilets” size either.

I am fairly sure that few men except for the extremely trendy, image concious ones ever really bought into the idea of a girfriend who lived on water, air and cocaine: half-crazed with hunger and desperately distracting herself with shopping, wearing very large sunglasses and personal drama. And the thing with extremely trendy, image conscious men is that they’re all gay. Yes even him, the one you’re sleeping with**. He just hasn’t worked out how to tell his mother yet. It is important to remember in the historical sexiness stakes that Marilyn Monroe didn’t miss an awful lot of meals (other issues aside) and neither did Brigette Bardot.

[missing paragraph replaced] Whereas it took me all of 30 odd years to learn to handle really complicated equipment the new generation have been handed the sexual equivalent of a full IKEA catalogue, a full set of instruction manuals and a broad choice of power tools. Lucky bastards.
So tune in, pig out and go in to the office late tomorrow. With the handcuffs still attached to your wrists.

Previously, in this series:
Modern Sex written 14 Dec 1998

Modern Sex pt2 written 13 Jun 1999

*- because they know little boys won’t be getting any elsewhere: pederast noun {C} a man who has illegal sex with a young boy

** Unless he’s Italian***. They are the only stylish, straight men. They have entirely different issues with their mothers, though.

*** No, not Argentinian either: gay; also not upperclass British: very gay; definitely not German: ubergay.

It takes a certain kind of self-absorbed, overly-confident man to find great entertainment sifting through their own writing and observations of the past. Stopping occasionally to muse on the genius of insight and pathos contained within.

Well, I am that man. Apart from the bit about the pathos, genius and insight which all sounds a bit gay, really. Not on with me having a “macho” day and all. I should probably put on a vest right away, open a beer and forget to wash for a week.

As it happens, a comment by my reader led me to one of my old pieces, which got me to reading more which led to this (lazy) post. My writing tends toward the less flippant these days. Perhaps it’s time to start drinking heavily again.

99.03.10 M.P.D. posted August 16th, 2006 https://midnightjester.wordpress.com/old-pieces/990310-mpd/

98.01.28 Transformers posted August 16th, 2006 https://midnightjester.wordpress.com/old-pieces/980128-transformers/

98.01.28 Relationships posted August 16th, 2006 https://midnightjester.wordpress.com/old-pieces/980128-relationships/

98.04.03 M.P.D. take 2 posted August 16th, 2006 https://midnightjester.wordpress.com/old-pieces/980403-mpd-take-2/

98.12.07 Democracy posted August 16th, 2006 https://midnightjester.wordpress.com/old-pieces/981207-democracy/

I also like this
http://dictum.wordpress.com/my-name-is-steve-and-i-live-on-the-moon/

And just to prove I’m not completely self-absorbed: one of my favourite observations of all time not made by me.

“I believe the Jews have made a contribution to the human condition out of all proportion to their numbers: I believe them to be an immense people. Not only have they supplied the world with two leaders of the stature of Jesus Christ and Karl Marx, but they have even indulged in the luxury of following neither one nor the other.”

Peter Ustinov. British Actor and raconteur.