Friday, March 21, 2014

Travel; Chaucer again; Lying politicos; Cog diss; Crimean speed; & Expat blogs.

Preparing to depart for my annual trip to the UK, it struck me the main difference between travelling by air and by car/boat is that, in the former case, it's a question of how little you can take and in the latter how much. It expands to fill the space available.

Just going back to Chaucer for a couple more observations:
- There are no apostrophes in his text. Even for the possessive case.
- Now and again, there's a sentence almost the same as now. Such as: "Of remedies of love she knew perchaunce" and "A good man was ther of religion". When I find a perfect line, Ill let you know.

An Italian professor tells us that: "Politicians do not lie in the classic manner of deliberately telling an untruth. Instead, thy are practiced in the art of self-deception, so much so that when they utter an untruth, they themselves believe it to be true". Self-deception, Prof. Galeotti says, "is a type of motivated irrationality - the art of believing something simply because it is desired to be true when evidence points to the very opposite". This, he adds, is an essential tool for a successful politician. Normal human beings have developed intuitive skills to detect lying, sometimes based on recognition of facial signals known as 'micro-expressions'. So, most people are not deceived by straightforward lies. Politicians, however, have learned to avoid giving these signs. And the more successful they are, the higher they rise, one assumes. Think Tony Blair, I suppose. An absolute master of the game. And now a very rich one. Smart move to leave one lying profession, the law, for another one which would reward his superlative mendacious skills even more handsomely.

BTW - I think I lifted the stuff about the Italian prof from Lenox Lewis's Business over Tapas.

Cognitive dissonance is the art of holding two opposing thoughts at the same time. In my case: 1. I think I'll put this half-mug of coffee on the other sofa cushion, and 1. If I put this mug there it'll fall over like last time. Then there's: 1. If I put this glass of wine on the floor, it'll be OK, and 2. If I put this glass there, I'm bound to kick it over. Both of these come under my acronym of DTIDDE items. Or daft things I do despite experience. Reader nominations welcome.

I've heard people assert, on this blog in fact, that Russian bureaucracy is far worse than that of, say, Spain. But it can't be true. For the absorption/annexation of Crimea - which on Monday faced 'numerous' hurdles - has been completed in less than a week. Impressive. Perhaps the paperwork had all been drafted beforehand. And maybe Mr Putin has some influence on the Russian parliament and the Constitutional Court.

Finally - A certain on-line journal this week published its list of the 6 best expat blogs in Spain. This didn't include any of those I read, let alone mine. But two can play at that game!So this will be the last time I (don't) mention this journal. Vindictive? Moi?


Anonymous said...

The Italian Professor you quote is a she not a he, a woman not a man--Elisabetta Galeotti. Credit where credit is due, old boy.


Perry said...

Cognitive dissonance is a Jesuit dark art.

Insanity is repeating the same action & expecting a different result.

To steal ideas from one person is plagiarism. To steal from many is research.

To steal ideas from one person is plagiarism. To steal from many is research.

Richard North picked up the Italian professor's point as well.

I posted the comment below on the on the obsequious Benn obituary in the Telegraph.

"Benn was unable to be honest with others, because he continually lied to himself. Honest people perceived this about Benn & that is why even in realpolitik, Benn never amounted to a hill of beans. Good riddance to him; he was no hero & may his family realise & remember that."

We move in exalted circles you & I, just like the Oozlum Bird.

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