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The coquettish art of the vacuous courtesan

wadhamStill making up the mind about Lucy Wadham, an English expat in France some 30 years. She employs some remarkable turns of phrase I’d like to believe are hers but they so often follow a concluded quote by one of the literary greats that it’s not easy to tell.

And yet it’s an important point because on p78 of The Secret Life of France, Faber and Faber, 2009, she refers to why the French want you to speak French to them – it makes them feel warm inside but will then massacre your own language five minutes later in order to spare their own ears from hearing any more of your French.

She says French is not an efficient language:

There are too few nouns for it to be properly useful.It is a language given to digression and subordinate clauses – the language of diplomacy, the language of noncommitment.

And it is that very noncommitment which spills over into the sphere of sexual relations, upon which she is quite prudish.…


First the majority [though this has now been overtaken]:

When you read John Humphry’s piece it becomes clear. The corruption he talks about, with the example of the tax collectors fleecing the car dealership of thousands, is enough to undermine anyone’s ambition. Why work when parasites like that help themselves and you have to pay up under duress.
For me the Troika are now between a rock and a hard place. If the new Govt manages to get the terms of the repayment of their ‘bail out’ changed, just watch the PIIGS a line up to do the same. If the Troika says no, watch the Greeks default. The Grexit will also set a precedent.

Putin has already offered the Greeks a lifeline. Money in exchange for developing the Greek resources under the Aegean. And possibly even extend this new oil pipeline they’re building between Russia and Turkey, through Greece (as a hub) to Europe, bypassing Ukraine.…

The lies of the U.S., NATO and Kiev

When the first story of the shelling of Mariupol came out, I immediately went to a couple of non-RT sites to find out and one had an interview with the rebel commander, a longish interview.

I was silly enough not to cut and paste to Word as I had no idea – I should have had – that the western media would so blatantly come out with this garbage about the rebels shelling the town.

Even before reading the commander, it was bleedin obvious – who has the form of shelling towns, of the two?  Why would the rebels do that?  For them, it’s a hearts and souls thing – look at Mariupol on the map and it’s a clear strategic thing Russia would like the rebels to have.  They are not overwhelmingly loved in that town so a PR job was obviously going to be an imperative.

Then I read the interview.…

To write this or not – that is the question …

No-go areas

When I ran the post on there being no no-go areas in Paris [or there were], a correspondent wrote that he’d been in Paris a long time ago and had grown up there – presumably he’d been to all today’s no-go areas in the city.  I replied that that was too long ago.

Today, another message arrived* – here it is in whole, unabridged:

What I meant was, I would venture in to “no go areas”. I am not saying that it is risk free, but any rough area of any city can be treacherous.

I would also go into the dodgy areas of Sydney or London. I have done, but obviously you don’t go in there wearing a three piece suit and Italian leather shoes. Dress down, and look like you belong, and there is no problem. It is different for the police but I know that city, and they will not allow the fools to take over, even if the approach may be softly, softly.

To write of the Ukraine or not – that is the question …

The words “unspeakable evil”, “barbarity” and “atrocity” are so freely applied to the blanket of appalling things being seen across the western world that they’re losing all meaning, people are essentially shellshocked and are becoming inured.

If an atrocity is reported from Donetsk, people glance over in a daze, then glance back again.  It’s happening everywhere – that couple drinking an 11 year old’s blood, those teachers of both sexes having the students, in no small part because of the early sexualization of kids thanks to the left and if the left don’t get you, the right in Dolphin Square will.

And in the middle of this comes the latest from the Donbass.…

French no-go zones DO exist, of course

Why on earth would Fox apologize for saying there are no-go zones in Paris? Of course there are and they’ve been listed for years:

So what’s with Huffington Post and the Guardian then?

Wiggia writes:

What gets into politicians that they can stand up lie and expect the general population to believe them, the only people agreeing with her are other politicians such as back street march leader Cameron, and we were supposed to believe that as well, they have no shame.

Suppressing the moral compass [1]

hopper hotel 1952

[Edward Hopper; Hotel by the Railroad, 1952]


Many of the best films, especially thrillers, start with some small anomaly in the middle of the dross of a typical day and go from there. Sherlock Holmes stories used that formula.

It’s often the small behaviour or act which goes relatively unnoticed by the wider public which hides the deep cancer that’s eaten out the body politic and the analogy holds up of the small mole on the skin which goes unnoticed and is actually a sign of the cancer.…


First off, Cherie writes on Portsmouth Historic Dockyard at Broad Oak blog.  A must-read for those who like their history.

Wiggia brings us a reminder of the Yes Prime Minister lines which are relevant to the Sun’s apparent decision to drop the Page 3 titties:

Hacker: Don’t tell me about the press, I know exactly who reads the papers: The Daily Mirror is read by people who think they run the country; The Guardian is read by people who think they ought to run the country; The Times is read by people who actually do run the country; the Daily Mail is read by the wives of the people who run the country; the Financial Times is read by people who own the country; The Morning Star is read by people who think the country ought to be run by another country; and The Daily Telegraph is read by people who think it is.

Islam in 2014/15

There are three issues on which I’m personally attacked the most. N1 is feminism, N2 is gays and a new one, N3, is on Islam. Each requires a page in itself.

There is a series of posts starting here plus a rebuttal here, which are worth reading to put this issue into context.

With the gay issue, I essentially said that until you’ve actually been raped in adolescence by one, your opinion is always going to be intellectual and philosophical. For those who’ve faced it in reality though, it’s very real indeed.

With Islam, it’s the same thing – unless you’ve lived with Muslims, I don’t ascribe a lot of weight to your opinion.

I was twelve years in a Muslim republic, half my friends were Muslim, I had three Muslim gfs. I’ve seen the gentle, peaceful side therefore. You don’t need to tell me there are peaceful Muslims – in Muslim republics there are.…