Maud here. We’ve been abandoned by the Editor. At least we think he’s off on holiday, but we had absolutely no warning till Wednesday morning when he wasn’t here. We – that’s me and Karela – just found a note on the door, saying he’d had an urgent call and was going on the early boat. Actually he must have left by that time. Meantime it said we have to fill in here, and call Monty and Berthold to see if they have anything to send over, and we could trying finding out where the Mad Doc is at present, otherwise it’s up to us what gets posted. Then Friday morning we had a call from Heathrow (at least that’s where he said he was). He wouldn’t say where he was going, just that he had to meet an old friend, but he sounded quite cheerful, even though we worked out he must have arrived in Britain too late to lay in a big stock of legal highs which is what we suspect he was after. Eddy also mentioned he’d had an excited SMS from Manos who is still in Germany and still believes he has a real chance of saving the world from global war (I think that must be a mistake for ‘global warming’ but with him you can never be sure) with his idea of genetically modified grass. Eddy said if he had time he’d send a WhatsApp about some notice they were all handed at the inner entry gate at the airport, and he did so here it is, to prove he wasn’t lying (again) which we thought first off he was. (Sorry, Eddy, we mean making things up.) Here it is:
First-class passengers may now take their places in the Libor Laureate Lounge. All other passengers must proceed in a quiet and orderly fashion to the disrobing rooms. Remember to take your fingerprints with you, if you do not you will have to return to the Departures entry point and start your application to enter Departures again. Anyone who has recently been in contact with anything that might be or might resemble a psychoactive substance, other than alcohol, (see lists on left and facing walls) must instead go immediately to the security detection facility and await their turn to be tested.
Anyway it seems it really is up to us now, plus Simon if he comes in, which is probably more likely now that Eddy is away. We’ve had a rummage through all the drawers that weren’t locked, and even pulled stuff out of the bin, but haven’t found all that much. Apart from handwritten scrawls which we couldn’t read and crumpled balls of paper here it is: (but we did also find some used envelopes, with stamps on from Georgia, three of those, one each from Armenia, Tanzania, and Bolivia, but that one was probably from Dr Philipp)
Favourite phrases of the 45% or so of the world’s population that connects to the internet every day: ‘We all’; ‘everybody’; ‘100 times a day’; ‘all the time’; and indeed ‘every day’. What is it about too much time spent looking at the garbage that fills most electronic screens most of the time, which causes enfeeblement of awareness of the condition of the real world around us?
Linguistic corner (As you see there were two of these) : A ‘remarck’ is an observation which explains some historical event in terms of realpolitik
Question of the week : As humanity licks the last scraps of civilisation from the bottom of the jar, haven’t we about reached the year in which some attention-seeking American university department arranges with a zoo to bring up a human child as a chimp?
(a loose sheet with no heading, handwriting of Editor)
From obit of Frau Honecker, E.Gmn ‘education’ minister. Education to include socialism principles practice. ‘purpose of education’ to bring kids up practising socialists. Odd, like mirror current views capitalist theory, Tories. How ‘our’ gov’t (whoever) is (nobly and properly) run, civic education, in UK ‘British values’. Purpose education (acc. to EU commissner!) ‘to fit for job market’. Well, well.
The government proposals to privatise crime are being put on hold after, it is reported, strenuous opposition from members of the ruling party (Where?)
One reason they take his side so readily is that he has the air of a white-collar criminal, who had been thrown into chokey for physical assault, now just out under provisional licence.
(We don’t know who this is supposed to be but we can guess. M and K.)
(This item is printed on the sort of lined paper Berthold uses, so it is probably from him)
Trivial examples and genera l truths
First the trivial example: country after country is closing down its colourful street markets. They are being closed down because they do not look respectable and orderly, and they ‘present a bad image to tourists’. This is a useful indicator of the intelligence level of the average government, which can be expressed as a question: ‘Do they suppose that tourists go to visit their country because it has no street markets and its streets are respectable and orderly?’ The general truth is of course that lack of intelligence is no bar to success in politics. Manifestations of this truth range up and down the scale from relatively harmless to devastating, and the same variability exists in the scale of another general truth. On the 6th August, the way that the anniversary of the dropping of an atomic bomb on Hiroshima is marked will be an example from fairly low on the scale for this truth. It consists in the fact that so few will be made aware, in reports on the anniversary, of a fact relevant to the original 1945 event itself. Solemn ceremonies will be noted, solemn declarations will be made. A very few may be reminded that it was stated that the bombing was a demonstration, to avoid the casualties to invading forces if the war was to continue; but the enormously more important fact, hard up to the devastating end of this general truth, is that the demonstration took place at 9.15 am local time on that day. The implications are fairly obvious. The general truth of course is that the human race is not fit to rule either the planet or itself.
Special note (from us)
Do read the MD column in Private Eye (copy 13th to 26th May). Especially you readers in Britain. Since you all need Sats tests from age 7 upwards to show you’re able to make your proper contribution to the economic progress of your country, how about IQ tests before your MPs can become a government minister (or for people before they can become an MP)?
Take care all! Maud and Dr Karela