Saturday, October 31, 2015

Autumn Poem

honeygold lemonyellow
splashes of    here (t)here    everywherewhichwayfalling
leaf ..  f       f  ..     s s s …..

from the tall tops   of tulip trees


.                      .

Temps et durée chez l’enfant

[A re-post  for Halloween]

[This is the second note concerning temporal subjectivity in children.  The first can be consulted here.]

Today we are drenched in a frigid drizzle;  but the weather-front held off long enough that Hallowe’en night was perfect for trick-or-treating.   A procession of adorable but predictable  princesses and superheroes  trooped by -- past the pumpkin, past the penguin who greets all visitors to our door :  and then one costume  caught me up short.   It was a tall, pale, longitudinal sort of smooth something, with just an oval cut out for the child’s face.
            “Is that … a banana?” I inquired.
            She assured me that that was exactly what it was;  and that she was so attired, in attestation to the healthiness of fruits and vegetables.
            Silently blessing her in the back of my mind, I explained that the apparition had taken me aback, because it took me back -- back to that day in 1956, when our wonderful first-grade teacher, for reasons unexplained (or perhaps explained, but not understood;  or understood, but later forgotten, in the flood of facts and fantasies of all the later years of our lives), showed up dressed as a carrot.
            A giant carrot.  Orange.  Crunchy.   The most amazing vision I had ever seen.
            “Her name was Miss Fleming,” I added casually:  as though this Objective Correlative might ratify an anecdote otherwise stretching credulity.


And that, as with so many things  on a flat earth  in a grey life, would have been that;  save that she then spoke up -- evidently quite persuaded by my narrative -- and added this pertinent detail:
            I know Miss Fleming.”
            I stared at her, incredulous.   And did not mention, that the events referred to  lay a full half-century in the past.  And that, quite shortly thereafter,  “Miss Fleming” was, as such, no more, for she changed her name and station:  the memory of her wedding is with me yet. 
            “She’s a French teacher,” explained the banana.
            Charmed and amazed, I came back as best might be.  Eh bien, toi -- tu parles français?”
            She prettily mimicked regret.  “No-o… I don’t know French yet.”   Then added brightly, with a note of earnestness:  “Would you teach me French?”

Ah, ah! ma -- ma demi-demoiselle :  comme je le voudrais !  Les mots, les gestes, les métaphores -- tout, tout, je te donnerais, te léguerais, avec tout mon cœur battant !

These civilities past, I handed out the candy to the little clump of goblins and whatnot, who formed her entourage.   With that they withdrew, into the inviting, the enveloping night. 
A pang of regret at their going.
Yet then, from out of sight, a voice called back:  Au revoir !”

Ah dame oui, mais oui, j’espère, ma chère, chère demoisellette divine ! Peut-être cette nuit-même, dans nos rêves !!

Jokes in Progress

(1) An alcoholic and a teetotaller  walk into a bar

(2)  A fish flops up towards the shore, evolves a kind of stumps, painfully drags itself up the sand, evolving legs in the process, and eventually a bipedal (though shuffling) gait, and finally, upright, with features distinctly European,
walks into a bar.

(3)  A man with tattered shirt and trousers  has been marooned on a desert island -- for quite some time, judging by his beard.   The island is bare of everything, except for one lone palm tree. 
Finally, it occurs to the man  to glance behind the tree, whereupon he espies:  a bar.
He walks into it.

(4)  A midget and a Scotsman walk into a bar.
The bar turns out to house, in its interior, another, much smaller bar. 
The midget walks into it;  the Scotsman looking on helplessly.

(5)  A penguin walks … and walks … and walks …


In a top-secret laboratory, our technicians are working to perfect these jokes. 

Dr J’s Joke-Works

But the work is costly and time-consuming, and we receive no government funding (and only paltry amounts from the Illuminati, whose sense of humor is  in any event  quite dim).   But YOU can support this needful work!   Simply ..

~ ~  Buy ~ my ~ books ~ ~

In the meantime, while waiting for your order to arrive (via free, overnight shipping!), enjoy these joke-related offerings:

Friday, October 30, 2015

"We cannot play games with Satan…”

Worst idea for a TV show ever:

ST. LOUIS, Oct. 29 (UPI) -- The Catholic archdiocese of St. Louis spoke out Thursday against a live exorcism that will be broadcast on cable television, warning that the "dangerous" event has not been sanctioned by the church.

Destination America is broadcasting the event, titled Exorcism: Live!, on Friday. It will take place in the St. Louis home that was the site of a purported Satanic possession that inspired William Peter Blatty's book The Exorcist, made into an Oscar-winning film in 1973.

"No exorcism can take place without the authority of the local Roman Catholic ordinary," auxiliary bishop emeritus Robert Hermann said in a statement.

The program will exorcise the actual home, not any person, where a young boy known as "Roland Doe" was the reported subject of a possession in 1949. Catholic priests performed a series of exorcisms to free the child from Satanic grip in the notorious case.

"No one has ever attempted to rid the lurking spirits and demons that inhabit this home -- until now," Destination America said in promotional material for the program.

The exorcism is said to be the first ever broadcast live, but the St. Louis archdiocese said such an extreme measure should not be treated as mere entertainment.

"Any attempt to use the solemn Rite of Exorcism as entertainment exposes all participators to the danger of future hidden satanic attack," Hermann said. "We cannot play games with Satan and expect to win."

"Anyone involved in this production who claims to be a member of the Catholic clergy is not affiliated with the Archdiocese of St. Louis nor are they operating under the authority of the Vatican," Jones said. "Any purported exorcism ... for the purposes of entertainment trivializes this ancient rite of the Roman Catholic Church and the very real danger of evil."


It was towards the end of his career as a private detective, that Michael Murphy finally encountered a case  he knew he could not handle, and knew better than to try. And so he called in a Specialist:

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Riemannistan claims New York Harbor

In the latest exercise of Realpolitik (or perhaps better:  Surrealpolitik),  China has constructed a little artificial island or buoy or diving-platform  in international waters;  claimed it (We built it, We bought it);  and claimed the surrounding ocean as its territorial waters.
The island is known   in the local language  as Wee Hee Woi Hoi, which translates as “Pimple Island”.  In reckless disregard of Chinese sovereignty, the US quickly sent warships on a drive-by.  China denounced this.

Pimple Island,
sacred to the Chinese

And now we, the free people of people’s freedom-loving Riemannistan,  do join our chorus to that of our Chinese brothers and sisters and uncles and aunts, in excoriating the racist imperialist sexist navalist U.S. power-move.

Realizing that a sort of sea-rush was about to be unleashed, comparable to the land-rush in the early United States,  Riemannistan has accordingly built an island of its own, smack in the middle of New York harbor.    It shall be internationally known as:

 =>  Pickelberg  <=

Physically, Pickelberg is as yet somewhat unprepossessing;   consisting, as it does so far, of nothing but a yellow rubber duckie, previously denizen of our bathtub.  But still, it is sovereign under International Law.  Its (projected) lofty peaks and rolling hills, are  sacred territory to the Riemannistanians.   And according to our law, its dominions stretch over an 800 mile radius in every direction -- by land, by sea, or in the air.   Thus, Riemannistan now effectively controls all commerce on the Eastern seaboard.

As our first economic act under this new regime, we proclaim a 100% tariff on all imports, and all exports as well.   Please remit payments  care of this site, to:

            Al-Imam Dawud
            Supreme Leader
            People’s Cantorian Republik of Riemannistan
            537  Married People’s Circle
            Marriedland,  USA

Payment is accepted in Swiss francs or bullion only;  no dollars, pesos, second-party welfare checks, or Euros, please.

Monday, October 26, 2015

Katzenjammer aus Kakanien

“Sie sind in der Festung drin.  Diese Festung fällt nicht morgen oder übermorgen, aber wir wissen, sie fällt.  Nicht in fernen Generationen, sondern wir alle, wir wollen es noch erleben, daß sie fällt.
-- Otto Bauer, Vienna, March 1927

 It has been a month of awkward anniversaries.
=> Germany celebrated its reunion, in the midst of what feels like a national implosion.
=> The U.N. marked its 70th year of increasing uselessness.
=> And today, Austria feted its national day, while a ragtag army of intruders swarmed across its undefended national borders,  the police and politicians  looking on helplessly.   As for the Army, it has been gynecized into imbecility:

Was macht das für Landesverteidigung zuständiges Bundesheer währenddessen?

Es beschäftigt sich mit einem Gender-Sprachleitfaden aus dem SPÖ-Frauenministerium, der überall für Kopfschütteln sorgt.
(Worte wie Mannschaft, man, jeder, jemand und niemand sollen nicht mehr verwendet werden.)


The eve of the celebrations (such as they were) were besmirched by an astonishing outburst against Austria’s neighbors, by the Interior Minister Madame Mikl-Leitner:

Deutschland übernimmt nach Angaben von Innenministerin Johanna Mikl-Leitner (ÖVP) "aktuell einfach zu wenig Flüchtlinge”.

Now that is chutzpah in high-heels and a cocked hat:  Germany, the cul-de-sac into which the rest of the world is pouring its wretched-refuse, with Austria acting as the Schleuderer-in-Chief !


For just a moment, it looked as if, although Mutti Merkel has yet to come to her senses and defend her country's borders,  Mutti Mikl just might finally have caught on:

Österreichs Innenministerin spricht von einem Zaunbau.

But no such luck.  She still has not the gumption to suggest such a procedure for Austria;  rather, “let Ivan do it”:

Sollte die EU-Außengrenze in Griechenland nicht rasch geschützt werden, sei ein Zaunbau an Sloweniens Grenze zu Kroatien "überlegenswert".


Actually, Miss Mikl showed a certain pragmatism, in passing the buck  only as far as the next statelet over, Slovenia.   After all, it is in Slovenia’s own interests  that she defend her borders, keeping out the unwanted.   Whereas Merkel made a Canossa-trek all the way to Turkey, to implore Erdogan to do the dirty-work in her stead.

Now, let’s reason this out logically.   Whereas Norway, Finnland, Sweden, Denmark, Germany, Germany, Austria, Slovenia, Croatia, Macedonia and Greece (to name the ‘extended West-Balkan route’, the Appalachian Trail of in-migration) would each like to keep the migrants out (but lack the will to do so),  Turkey by no means wishes to keep them in, which is what Merkel is asking.  Turkey doesn’t want the Syrians and she doesn’t want the Kurds, nor any other migrant band that uses Anatolia as a way-station.  Hence, whereas a nudge might induce overstressed Slovenia to guard its entrance-gates, Merkel would have to pay Turkey very dearly, to close its exits.   Thus keeping the steam inside the kettle.

And this she has proposed to do, via three inducements. 

*  Mucho moolah.   Unfortunately, this one’s no longer such a breeze, since Germany paid to bail out Greece yet again;  and as there will be a bill coming due for all those immigrants, a bill with (to use the chancellor’s chiselled phrase) “keine Obergrenze”.
*  No more visas required for Turks to enter Germany.  (Turkey already does a land-office business in fake Syrian passports; now fake Turkish passports  will also be in demand.)
*  A promise to speed Turkey’s entry into the European Union.  (This, at a time when Erdogan has been sliding ever deeper into dictatorial excess, and where civil war seems to loom.)

A more reckless piece of diplomacy  would be difficult to conceive.

Lesen Sie die Geschichte  spesenfrei !

[Update 28 October 2015] Gingerly advancing a toe towards what eventually needs to be done:

Angesichts des Flüchtlingsandrangs will Österreich seine Grenze zu Slowenien offenbar teils auch durch einen Zaun sichern. Österreichs Innenministerin Johanna Mikl-Leitner sagte am Mittwoch dem Sender Ö1, es gehe aber nicht darum, die Grenze "dicht zu machen". Vielmehr solle ein "geordneter, kontrollierter Zutritt" geschaffen werden.

A reader wryly comments, in reference to the increasingly urgent polemics from the Bavarian CSU-chef:

Grenzzaun zu Slowenien
Na also - offenbar war der Klartext von Seehofer doch nicht vergebens.

Another, more wryly still:

wozu brauchen die nen Zaun, die schicken die Flüchtlinge ja eh gleich weiter nach Deutschland. Wollen die jetzt auch noch den Sprit für die Busse sparen, die die Flüchtlinge an die deutsche Grenze karren. Da regt sich diese fragwürdige Innenministerin auf, das Deutschland zu wenig Flüchtlinge aufregt, und sie offensichtlich dann gar meine mehr

[Note to anglophones:  Sprit = fuel.]

Nun denn, wir bauen doch ‘nen Zaun --
aber doch nur 10 cm hoch !


Am Nationalfeiertag lobte die Staatsspitze in ihren Festreden in höchsten Tönen, wie sich das Land in der Flüchtlingskrise bewähre. Diese Bewährungsprobe besteht aus Improvisation und fußt auf der Annahme, dass Deutschland unbegrenzt alle Menschen aufnimmt, die sich über die Balkanroute durchgeschlagen haben. Bislang tut dies die Wirtschaftsgroßmacht auch; doch der Konsens in der Berliner Regierungskoalition, mit dieser Praxis fortzufahren, erscheint zunehmend brüchig.

~ Sigmund Freud  und  Sherlock Holmes: ~

[Update 28 Oct 2015]  Einführung in die Flüchtlings-Semantik
Mikl-L, responding to an interviewer, with a (probably unintentional) double-entendre.

Könnte Österreich in eine Situation kommen, in der es die Grenze nach Slowenien doch völlig dicht machen müsste?
Daran denkt keiner.

The intended conveyed-meaning is:  “No, of course not, nobody would ever want to do that.”
The literal, yet repressed (subconscious) meaning:  “Nobody is thinking of that -- not entertaining the possibility” (because they have their head in the sand;  yet it still might come up and bite them on the ass).

[Update 29 October 2015]   Flüchtlings-Semantik : Weiteres zum Thema
A mincing minuet, choosing euphemisms:

Innenministerin Johanna Mikl-Leitner (ÖVP) bleibt dabei: An der Grenze im steirischen Spielfeld müsse es Befestigungen geben.
Einen Vergleich mit Ungarns Zäunen weist sie strikt zurück.
Angesichts der Debatte um die Lage in Spielfeld – die steirische Integrationslandesrätin Doris Kampus etwa verwahrte sich strikt gegen "Zäune", kann sich aber ebenfalls bauliche Maßnahmen am Grenzübergang selbst vorstellen

Recall the polemics, a few years ago, over whether Israel’s divider against the Palestinians was a “fence” (good) or a “wall” (bad).  But now we are more delicate:  it’s between a “fence” (bad) and “temporary constructional measures” (acceptable).

Ceci n’est pas une clôture

For a superb gallery of political fences in history:

Falls Sie im Doktor-Justiz-Sammelsurium
weiterblättern möchten,


[Update 30 October 2015]  In fairness, and hewing to the principle that what’s sauce for the goose  is sauce for the gander (or, the people who live in glass houses, should not throw stones), we must concede that the United States, in addition to being often unwilling to defend its borders, has long been too feckless even to protect the White House with an adequate fence.  This latter saga is less well known to our European readers;  read about it here.

[Update 31 Oct 2015]   Austria, too, is running out of bears:

Spielfeld (Steiermark), 31 Oktober 2015
Dazu, letzlich, diese Ministerin:

[Update 10 November 2015] 
NDLR, explaining the latest euphemism:

Kein Wort von Mikl zu Zaun

Zu einem Bericht des "Kurier", wonach sie am slowenischen-österreichischen Grenzübergang in Spielfeld einen 25 Kilometer lange Sperre, vulgo Zaun, hochziehen will, erklärte Mikl-Leitner nur: "Ich werde zu dem Konzept nichts sagen."

A reader comments:

Die BMI führt sich auf wie eine spätpubertierende Klassensprecherin. Dauernd irgendwelche eigenartigen Wortspenden absondernd, droht sie mit einem Zaun, um zuletzt mit einem schmallippigen Grinsen anzumerken, dass die bösen Buben schon sehen werden was passiert.

[Update 11 November 2015]  Okay, it has gotten too complex for me to follow.  A rough outline.

(1) Deutscher Innenminister de Maizière  announces -- on what turns out to be his own hook -- that, henceforward, Syrian Eindringlinge  will be (save in exceptional cases) granted only a “secondary” asylum, with a time-limit and no right of family reunification.
In itself, that move, while significant, does not affect Austria, and Austria does not react.
However, swiftly thereafter, Merkel’s Sprachrohr  Altmeier says:  Nothing of the kind.  And de Maizière rapidly retracts.

Now:  At first blush, this makes de Maizière look like a fool, and as though he had been punked by Altmeier.  But … by that rash act, he successfully, subtlely, altered the terms of debate.   A sort of knight-sacrifice in the Great Game.

(2) Yesterday, de Maizière (or, as the press reported it, “Germany”) unlooses a bombshell:  the Dublin agreement (arbitrarily and de factco swept aside by Merkel and indeed all the other states on the immigrational Appalachian Trail) is once again in effect, even for (purported) Syrians.  Meaning, basically, that they get summarily sent back to whatever European country first admitted them (modulo unimportant provisos).
Now, this would be a very big deal, the tipping-point for the whole European migrant crisis;  yet few media reported on it -- I first learned of it, actually, from the Austrian media.  For:  the immediate effect of such a change in policy, would primarily impact Austria.

Quite interestingly -- and to her credit -- Mikl-L rushed into print hailing the decision, which she called long overdue.
Now, saluting a Zaun, such as that reprobate Orban (boo! boo!) quickly and manfully erected, is taboo;  so why would M-L make so bold as to salute one?  Isn’t she a coward, like virtually every other European politician?  -- Well,  doch;  but consider.  Once Germany closes its border (or enforces Dublin, which amounts to the same thing), Austria must needs swiftly do likewise.   Hence, to reduce the inevitable heat from doing so, praise the Germans for doing it first.  Otherwise you are in an impossible position.

But!  The proposal to enforce Dublin, turns out to have been another de-M. smoke-signal or trial-balloon:  He (reportedly) had not pre-cleared this bold and major move, neither with the Kanzlerin nor Altmeier nor anyone else.  Loose cannon, off the reservation?  And yet the blowback within Germany  was surprisingly mild.  As though all factions, from the Chancellor to the Greens, were, if not actively welcoming, at least seeing what anemometrical indications they might receive  from said smoke, said balloon.

(3)  And now -- Slovenia, the third domino in line, before the second (Austria) has fallen, and before the fall of the first (Deutschland) has been confirmed, begins building -- not “announces” its intention to maybe being discussions re (etc etc), but actually hands-on, soldiers-on-the-Grenze, build -- a border fence.  Which, if it were done correctly and were effective, would actually relieve Austria of the necessity of building one of its own.  So-o …  will Mikl-Leitlein  therefore backpedal?  -- Stay tuned.

Saturday, October 24, 2015

The Manchurian Kanzlerin

As Europe continues to stand paralyzed  in the face of the inrushing human tide, all an observer Stateside can do, is to wonder why they let it come about.

A percipient essay in today’s Die Zeit -- a prominent newspaper, and long among the cheerleaders of the Gutmenschen narrative, but at last having second thoughts -- analyzes the psychology of the Kuschel-klatscher:

Ich und mein Syrer
Nach dem ersten Begeisterungsschock herrscht eine merkwürdige Angespanntheit in Deutschland. Das hat einen Grund: Die Flüchtlinge sind immer noch da.
Von Nina Pauer

As for what motivates Merkel, it is anybody’s guess.   In her public appearances, she continues to offer calm and lucidly worded defense of a disasterous policy, with no intimation that she might ever change her mind.   (One must at least admire her composure, in the face of increasingly strident public criticism, and anguished appeals from her own party ranks.)  Personally, I suspect that her background as a pastor’s daughter may be in play;  but many are much less charitable.   Some posit an Atlanticist Conspiracy, and claim that she is taking orders from her American masters.  (If so, someone should alert those American masters.  Why the US should desire its European allies to descend into chaos, is never explained.)  
The most exotic of the Verschwörungs-theorien  is that the DDR-born Chancelloress, under the code-name “Erika”,  was an agent of the Stasi (indeed, a great many East Germans were, to one extent or another) and that -- wait for it -- she is still faithfully carrying out a long-ago-hatched Communist plan for the destruction of the West.

(Such, mutatis mutandis, is the plot of the classic Cold War novel, twice filmed, The Manchurian Candidate.  The eponymous protagonist is a sleeper agent -- though unwitting -- and his controller is his imperious Mutti  who, come to think of it, looks a lot like Angela Merkel.)

“Wir schaffen das …  Wir schaffen das … “

Well.  It is tempting to pursue that plotline satirically, as we have done with so much else.  But this is all too real, and inching towards tragedy (while, impassive on Olympus, the gods look on).    So if you’re hankering for some good old conspiracy-mongering, I refer you instead (though my heart is not in it) to our extensive files on …

(I earlier observed, that the self-satirizing antics of the Republican Presidential candidates  put credentialed satirists such as ourself  out of work.   But neither can we satirize a tragedy.)

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Advances in Cryptography

Late-breaking news  that has all the town talking:

These researchers have discovered the perfect password that’s also easy to remember!

For security reasons, the WaPo has declined to reveal the actual password.  But with the thoroughness which readers have come to expect from the World of Doctor Justice ™ (headquarters:  Geneva),  we offer it to you now.  It is:


[Memorize this password -- Do not write it down!
After reading this post,  destroy the computer you read it on.
There!  Now you're secure.]

~  The World of Dr Justice ~
~~  Science U Can Trust  ™ ~~

For further cryptanalytic intricacies, click here.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Rede an die deutsche Nation

Rede an die deutsche Nation
von Frau Doktor Bundeskanzlerin
Angela Erika Merkel

* Your replacements have arrived.

* Leave the key under the doormat.

* Good luck with what’s left of your life.

I love to go  a-wandering
upon the moun-tain track!
And as I go, I love  to  sing,
my knapsack on my back.

[Update 8 November 2015]
Was hat denn Schiller gemeint, wenn er rief: Seid umschlungen, Millionen?
Das war abstrakt und erhaben, im Reich des Gedankens. Heute kann es uns passieren, dass nicht wir die Millionen umschlingen, sondern die Millionen uns.

Viele der Muslime wissen nicht, was es heisst, eine andere Religion zu respektieren. Man hat vergessen, dass auf den Flüchtlingsbooten Christen ins Wasser geworfen wurden.

[Weiteres zum Thema: ]

For your viewing pleasure: