Thursday, September 25, 2014

This Crazy World
Daumier - The Third Class Carriage



Hogarth - Bedlam


Hogarth - Gin Lane and Beer Street, London




Gustave Doré - Houndsditch, London


  1. Perhaps the poor man having all the uncontrollable orgasms could be exposed to naked pictures of Nancy Pelosi, Hillary Clinton and the entire gargling gaggle of leftwing hags and bats that haunt the musty corners and dark rafters of the Democratic Socialist party.

  2. I. Emma Marxienne said:

    The last item is the craziest and the most offensive by far. The idea that a mere condominium could be priced at 130 mill. gives proof of the crying need for an American Bolshevik revolution. The rich must be captured, pulled down into the streets and slaughtered by mobs of indignant citizens. The bastions of crony capitalism must be bombed to rubble. The plutocrats put on trial. Wall Street must be totally destroyed. the executive class must be eliminated, the factories must be run by the workers, the farms must be forced to produce free food for all the people. In the new earthly paradise no one ill be rich, no one will be poor. We will all be perfectly equal. No one will own anything. All will being equally to all. Opposition must be put to death. There will be no need for money ever again. Everyone will get what they need for free from the state.

  3. Ye poets ragged and forlorn,
    Down from your garrets haste;
    Ye rhymers, dead as soon as born,
    Not yet consign'd to paste;
    I know a trick to make you thrive;
    O, 'tis a quaint device:
    Your still-born poems shall revive,
    And scorn to wrap up spice.
    Get all your verses printed fair,
    Then let them well be dried;
    And Curll must have a special care
    To leave the margin wide.

    Lend these to paper-sparing Pope;
    And when he sets to write,
    No letter with an envelope
    Could give him more delight.

    When Pope has fill'd the margins round,
    Why then recall your loan;
    Sell them to Curll for fifty pound,
    And swear they are your own.

    -Jonathan Swift

    The Pope referred to above is, of course, Alexander Pope.

  4. Luxury flats in the middle of the world's top cities are a special case, but generally high property prices indicate that the cost of borrowing is too low in my opinion.

  5. "Curll," I take it, was a publishing house of the day? Is that right, Thersites?

    Once we've achieved Equality
    All rhyming will be moot
    For it will be our polity
    That credit gets the boot.

    In our grave new world
    Alike will be the weak and strong
    We’ll see the straight become the curled
    And all to all belong.

    There will be no more punishment
    For crime will not exist.
    Reward will suffer banishment,
    So rhyme will soon desist.

    ~ Alexander Hope-Lesse

  6. Why do you suppose then, Jez, that the price of real estate in the socialist countries of Europe and in Britain is far higher per square foot -- and the quality usually far lower -- than in these oh-so wicked United States?

    I have made a mild hobby of studying the price of real estate worldwide, and from what I've been able to gather the average American STILL, despite the inroads and depredations of "progressivism" has far far FAR better prospects for home ownership and the enjoyment of private property than anyone anywhere else in the world.

    The hideousness and utter wretchedness of the so-called "Council-Houses" in your country is a good case in point.

    That socialists tend to regard the ownership and enjoyment of private property as a curse, and seem always to want to denigrate the idea of "aping the rich," tells me why I despise and categorically reject the tenets of "collectivism" in all it many and varied forms.

  7. The cost of land is higher where it is more crowded. Also, my remark about the cost of borrowing applies here too.

  8. The qua;ity of design and construction of housing since the end of WWII has degenerated horribly here.

    Where poorer people used to live in 1,200-square-foot houses surrouned by garden space, and spacious city apartments with parquet floors, panelled walls and French doors here, they now live in hideous trailer parks and austere city housing "projects" where the scent of urine greets them at the door and follows them up the lift and down the graffiti-ridden concrete block corridor to their cramped, roach-infested quarters where it's very likely the faucets leak or the toilet is stopped up.

    This is NOT "progress."

  9. Few council houses remain over here. The houses still exist, but they are now mostly privately owned. As buildings, many of them are perfectly sound. Did you have a particular street in mind?

  10. There will be mud on the carpet tonight
    and blood in the gravy as well.
    The wifebeater is out,
    the childbeater is out
    eating soil and drinking bullets from a cup.
    He strides bback and forth
    in front of my study window
    chewing little red pieces of my heart.
    His eyes flash like a birthday cake
    and he makes bread out of rock.
    Yesterday he was walking
    like a man in the world.
    He was upright and conservative
    but somehow evasive, somehow contagious.
    Yesterday he built me a country
    and laid out a shadow where I could sleep
    but today a coffin for the madonna and child,
    today two women in baby clothes will be hamburg.
    With a tongue like a razor he will kiss,
    the mother, the child,
    and we three will color the stars black
    in memory of his mother
    who kept him chained to the food tree
    or turned him on and off like a water faucet
    and made women through all these hazy years
    the enemy with a heart of lies.
    Tonight all the red dogs lie down in fear
    and the wife and daughter knit into each other
    until they are killed.

  11. I suspect I would have loved Edmund Curll, Thersites. I read the WIKI article with relish. What a colorful scoundrel! He was so very very bad he was bloody marvellous. It's a wonder he escaped the gallows and lived lived to age 72.

    Mr. Curll wold certainly be right at home in the world as it is today. In fact I have to say he sounds throughly "modern"in his piratic, unethical approach to business, if a but more colorful and oddly endearing.

  12. Wel, Michael, I can't see what connection that has to this post, but it's intriguing and compelling if a bit mystifying. But, isn't that true of nearly all "modern" poetry? If you could understand it at first sight, it couldn't be any good, or have I got that wrong?

  13. "As buildings, many of them are perfectly sound."

    That's one of the things I like about Europe and the UK. I stayed at the New Inn in Lechlade-on-Thames once. The "New Inn" was built in the 1600's.

    I stayed in Cricklade too, but the bed was about half a foot shorter than I was... come to think of it, so was the ceiling.

  14. Amazing what passes for news these days, everything reads like the National Inquirer

  15. "Amazing what passes for news these days, everything reads like the National Inquirer."

    The public has an unlimited appetite, it would seem, for vicarious exercises in Sado-Masochism. We don't do gladiatorial combat, Christians v. Lions, public incineration at the Stake, or smashing the bones of miscreants and heretics with clubs and sledgehammers on the Catherine Wheel, nor do we enjoy daily hangings, floggings or humiliation in the stocks anymore.

    Jello-Urinalism is what we've gotten in their stead.

    I suppose we ought to admit that is "progress," don't you think?

  16. No rap artists on the Manilow Halloween special?

    Figured he could knock one off with Tupac.

  17. a bit showy, but ft might enjoy:

  18. "Lousing up the classics" is not my style -- unless it's done the way Anna Russell, Hoffnung and PDQ Bach used to do it.

    Satire always has about it an element of affection for the object of ridicule. Without that vital ingredient it lapses unto travesty.

  19. I actually found the musicality rather interesting. I'd love to hear a rap conversation within a Bach melody (ie- different human voices replacing each cello, each telling a slightly different story)

  20. I didn't detect any ridicule -- just showing off, which I find artistically worthless, but entertaining in the manner of a juggler.



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