slogans

Cheerful bleeder that I am, I set myself the task of writing slogans to popularise pastimes with a poor reputation, along the lines of ‘Incest – it’s a family thing’, for example. I told one of the mercenary youth this, and they exclaimed that I must have a lot of time on my hands, and of course I have, and not only time; but we’d best not go into that, since it’s such a nuisance to get off again, and it smells quite extraordinary……but where was I?

 

Here, I suppose, I’m usually here, God help me.

 

I should say here that ‘slogan’ is one of those blessed words in English that derives from an Irish root, it was what the Irish used to call a battle cry, the ‘cry of the host’, (or, I have heard it said, the ‘cry of the dead’) “sluagh-ghairm” – also transliterated into Scots English as the unattractive and now disused word ‘slughorn’.

 

I have wardrobes full of imaginary t-shirts with these unpopular slogans on, available for a nominal fee. Clothes with writing all over them are virtually compulsory after all, in the modern era. What strikes me as most peculiar about this modern dress-code is that individual consumers are expected to advertise the products they wear, walking around like living billboards, plastered with the logos, names and advertising slogans of multi-national designer brands, so that scarcely an inch of them remains bare of a product endorsement. If I made real clothes I would forbid people as ugly and stupid as these to buy or wear, let alone emblazon and declare their allegiance to my product-range in this way: spotty, glue-infested youths with atrocious haircuts hardly seem to me to promote Tommy Hilfiger (who he?) in the way he would have chosen. But there we are. Marketing is a mystery to me. FOR EXAMPLE: Why is it that those brands which are best known and sell most are nevertheless those most relentlessly advertised? Ford mo. co., Coca Coma, MacDonalds, and soforth. But then perhaps if they didn’t advertise so widely people would cease to find them necessary, and I suppose it must be admitted that at least they can afford it.

 

I have never owned a Ford motor car, and only once have I bought Coca Coma, which I used to unblock the toilet. It’s quite good at that, it seems to dissolve toilet paper, and probably other ingredients of toilet blockage as well, and it certainly fizzes like a bastard when you pour it down the pan. I was advised that this is what they do in the favelas of Brazil, so there is some use for the vile muck, apart from adding whisky to it and giving it to underage sex partners. I did once think of a slogan for Coca-Coma, which was a variation on a longstanding advertisement of their own: “Coca-Coma – you can’t feel the beating.” But for some reason this has not found favour in the world outside my skull. Speaking of possible uses for the apparently universally available filth, in China I am told they boil it down and use it as a cough medicine, which I suppose returns me to the subject of unpopular pastimes, none currently less fashionable than paedophilia, a notion formerly highly recommended by the Ancient Greeks, who called it ‘education’, inaugurating a tradition continued to this day in the English Public School and the great Religious Institutions of old grandmother Ireland. (One should note here that in England the ‘Public’ school is, in fact, a private, fee-paying establishment, a fact which probably explains a good deal about the English, but from this distance I am not sure what.) Anyway, the reputation of the paedophile has declined since Plato’s time to such an extent that one would think it could do with a bit of improvement. Nevertheless, it’s quite beyond me, my talents do not extend that far. I’ve been thinking about it for almost ten minutes already, and ‘Molest small boys, it’s fun.’ doesn’t seem a great place to start from.

 

It used to be commonplace for girls to marry at fourteen (and die in childbirth). Jerry Lee Lewis married (I seem to recall) his fourteen-year-old cousin, indicating that such things were fairly acceptable among rednecks and piano-botherers as late as the 1960’s. I doubt whether the Gary Glitter or Jonathon King back-catalogues have sold in hugely increased numbers recently, (certainly, my own attempts to market Gary Glitter’s Greatest Hits under the title of ‘DOING IT FOR THE KIDS’ have met with little in the way of favourable response,) but Jerry Lee Lewis is still quite highly regarded. It’s a matter of timing, I suppose. What was once acceptable becomes, in due course, outrageous, and vice-versa. Upper-class Victorians covered their table legs in fear of indecency, yet prostitution and child-labour flourished. Quite what they imagined their semi-naked tables might get up to, I don’t know, but it was certainly indecency of some sort.

 

Anyway, I’m afraid paedophilia is beyond me, but I offer some suggestions of slogans that might be employed to improve the public profile of other declining or unpopular activities:

 

Madness: you know it makes sense.

Smokers: a dying breed.

Murder: the only sure way.

 

the parable of the philpott

It is good to know finally and at last that the poor are not only responsible for their own misfortune but condemned by the Lord (and the ALMOST EQUALLY RESPECTABLE AND POWERFUL David Dacre) for their sinfulness to the beast-like and demeaning life of unemployment they desire and the miserable hopelessness they so thoroughly deserve just as good Calvinists had always believed. Of course this also explains that a common word used in the language with careless abandon to describe those with less money than the blessed and favoured of Providence – that is to say ‘deprived’ – was in fact a simple misprint or typing error and should in all places and at all times have read ‘depraved’. It is through the good offices of that journal of godliness the Daily Male that I have finally been apprised of these important and salutary facts, ably assisted by the much loved Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne and some presumably heroic ex-soldier by the name of Philpott. Now it can finally be proved that all benefit claimants are actually child killers, and I can only hope that a moral crusade will be instituted at once with the chief aim of stringing them up on lamp-posts next to the paedophiles and asylum-seekers who already take advantage of our hospitality up there.

 

So now and at last we have come to understand that so-called ‘benefits’ can and should be controlled on moral grounds in order to prevent heroic ex-soldiers from setting fire to quantities of their own children on the public’s time and with matches funded by the taxpayer. The eye-wateringly enormous sums of money that the heroic ex-soldier Philpott spent on petrol should be reclaimed through court action and used to assist bankers, accountants and retail moguls find suitable people to stand as directors for their offshore companies and for research into other forms of tax avoidance. The Daily Mal declares the heroic ex-soldier (one of our brave boys) a parable for our times, ignoring conveniently and for good reasons they do not admit the equally apposite and vastly more expensive stories of Fred Goodwin of the Royal Wank of Scotland, Lord Stevenson, the former chairman of HBOS, and its former chief executives Sir James Crosby and Andy Hornby for example. No, lets ignore them in their comfortable and honourable retirement and instead concentrate on this example of our brave boys as he stands as representative and exemplar of the poor and powerless in society. Our new mantra and equation will reveal that poverty = evil and that only the wealthy can truly be regarded as respectable (no matter what they have done – after all they can probably afford good lawyers) and worthy of the protection of the state.

As for the rest of them, string them up and me first.

run, run, as fast as you can

The fact has broken over me that our justice system in England is not so different from the widely admired system active in Russia, where ‘dissidents’ are locked up on invented charges and then murdered.

‘The inquest into the death in prison of a man convicted of stealing a gingerbread man during the riots in 2011 opens in London on Monday. James Best, 37, had a history of mental illness and physical problems, which his foster family say were not addressed by the prison.’
(http://www.guardian.co.uk/society/2013/mar/17/inquest-death-prisoner-jailed-gingerbread?INTCMP=SRCH)

We have a few dissidents here as well of course – and not all of them recently murdered Russians – and the Home Secretary (what a good title for a woman that is) expends a great deal of spittle in the attempt to deport some of them to face torture in their country of origin. But British Nationals involved in the exemplary looting of parts of London and elsewhere in 2011 were themselves awarded grotesque and exemplary punishments in order to make the point that even a stale gingerbread man has the protection of the law, perhaps more protection than the mentally ill.

It is of course well known that some large percentage of British prisoners suffer from mental health problems, perhaps even a majority if we include those with ‘learning difficulties’. That these problems are not addressed or even taken into account is scarcely a surprise, the prison system being as it is a revolving door warehousing facility for all manner of the socially maladapted. This particular story is notable however in its gathering together of various concerns – the violent, unjustified and indeed brutal reaction of the justice system to the 2011 riots, the increasing lack of care for the disadvantaged in society, the damaging effect of the prison system on its inmates whose problems are not addressed and whose alienation, hopelessness and indeed criminality is only reinforced by the experience of incarceration. More salutary still is the final, irrevocable outcome of it all: the unjustified and unnecessary death of a vulnerable individual in the hands of the State Security apparatus.

It reminds me of that blessed state of affairs that once pertained in our noble and freedom-loving country under which a man could be hanged for stealing a sheep or failing that and given a shortage of rope sent to Australia to steal a whole country from black men. We are not so far away from that now under this ruthless, under-elected and self-righteous government, wherein the evil stench of a decaying morality pervades the air, corroding all it touches. Using the excuse of financial necessity as a cover they reduce taxes on the rich, punish and denigrate the poor, harass and even persecute the disabled and impose a hideously distorted morality, a politics both of greed and envy they dress up as fairness. I have lived under some miserable and mean-minded governments but never before under one as plainly wicked as this.

So, my advice to all you would-be rioters out there is this :- “Run, run as fast as you can, but don’t catch me, I’m a gingerbread man.”