This and that from re Thai r ment, by 3Th. April 17, 2011

The portrait supposedly of Christopher Marlowe...

The portrait supposedly of Christopher Marlowe found during renovations of the Masters Lodge (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


1587. Christopher Marlowe‘s Tamburlaine his first play to be performed on stage in London. It told the story of the conqueror Timur ( also known as the “Lame” a comment on his physiognomy and not his sense of humor. As far as we know he had none, although he was known at times to smile broadly at the slaughter of the populations in the cities that he sacked. ), who rises from shepherd to warrior to emperor. It is among the first English plays in blank verse, and, along with Thomas Kyd‘s The Spanish Tragedy, generally is considered the beginning of the mature phase of the Elizabethan theatre.

50 years or so later, the religious right of that time, succeeded in banning theatre altogether.


a. Don’t hold your breath:

The Bangkok Post reported today that the Japanese government has ordered the operator of the damaged nuclear plant to pay each family displaced by the catastrophe about $12,000. As could be expected, the people who lost their home complain that it is not enough. One can assume that in all likelihood before any money reaches the injured parties, the company will claim it does not have the resources to fund the program, as a result the government will probably agree to pick up the tab then spend years figuring out how to do so, ultimately abandoning the program under pressure from the bond rating agencies, the business community and the conservative press claiming the nation is accumulating too much debt.

It is interesting to note how easy it is today for a government to abandon its promises to its people but never to its creditors. In a usually vain attempt to maintain its all important bond rating and to protect the value of the capital and rate of return of its lenders, it will forgo educating its people, or attending to their health and welfare. In Ireland, Ireland, Portugal of Greece it so far has made no difference to the downward spiral of their economies whether they accept or reject the conditions imposed on them in the so-called bailouts . If that is so, then why in heavens name would their governments shackle their people to penury in order to preserve the return on capital to some bankers and investors in Germany, Switzerland, England or New York)

b. Electioneering:

The current party in power in Thailand, in preparation for the upcoming election has derided the opposition’s promise to increase the minimum wage to 300 baht per day ($10), claiming their own proposal for increasing the minimum wage by 25% is better for employers.

25% of what?

c. It all sounds so reasonable:

A spokesman for the opposition party claimed that the country would return to peace if the exiled former leader of the party Thaksin was allowed to return to Thailand. He also assured everyone that if he were allowed to come back, Thaksin, would not demand the return of the more than one billion dollars confiscated from him and his family for corruption.


Recently, after a hiatus of over six months, I have begun to republish items into my blog ( Why I have resumed doing so, I am not sure. Perhaps I became tired of snips and pieces of things cluttering up my desk-top, then again perhaps not.

Anyway, as some of you know, the reason I tell myself (and you) that I write things like the blog and even “This and that…” is purely for my own pleasure. I refuse to admit to anything other than that.

A few days ago, I received my first real comment to one of my posts. The commenter said he liked my work and left me a cite to his own blog. I admit to being thrilled at receiving this acknowledgement of my existence and I immediately responded with a “thank you” note as I felt blogging etiquette probably required. I also dutifully clicked into his site as I again felt it was only the right thing to do.

My correspondent’s site primarily consisted of an ad. for a product called “Broccoli.” Broccoli it seems is essentially a wide rubber band  used to secure ones cash in lieu of a wallet. The rubber band in this case was decorated with a piece of silver metal, I assume to make it look serious.

A video hosted by a stereotypical beefy member of a well-known subset of my southern Italian ethnic group replete with gravelly voice and wavy black hair accompanied the advertisement.

He demonstrated the different ways one could wrap the rubber band around the “Wad” as he repeatedly called it. The so restrained wad firmly affixed the cash and even credit cards so that the twin evils of unsightly loose cash and overstuffed wallets were avoided. There was even a medical type snippet demonstrating how an overstuffed wallet in ones rear pocket can cause back pain. The video ended with a solicitation for investors in the company. If anyone is interested I still have the email address.

Remember “Never leave home without your Broccoli.”


Chapter 18

As he disconnected the phone, Vince threw himself back on his bed, stared at his hand and began to feel fear. Not fear of the unknown that often just makes one more wary and suspicious, but fear that he has lost control in the unknown. It was as though something larger than him was bearing down on him and he could neither run from it, dodge it, fight it or even know it before it overwhelmed him. Wariness and suspicion were not enough to avoid being overwhelmed. Why did he feel that way?

He closed his eyes and thought back to the day following his interrupted interview with Isabella at the bar in Bizzare.

Early in the morning he had gone to the offices of the firm’s outside counsel retained to handle any fallout from what he now referred to as the “Red Star Affair.” Pepper and Rooney, was a boutique criminal law firm, specializing in defending large corporations and wealthy individuals accused or about to be accused of what has become euphemistically known as White Collar Crimes as though violent crimes could only be committed by the working and unemployed classes, the blood on the hands of most white-collar criminals washed clean by intermediaries.

Most large firms had their own White Collar Crime practice groups, but they always were uncomfortable with it like it was somehow not respectable or perhaps even slightly diseased. Also, its practitioners were suspect, mostly coming from those same State and Federal entities that were persecuting the firm’s clients. Nevertheless, in order to please those same the clients and assure them that they were prepared to service their every legal need, they usually kept the practice group and its attorneys around. Many good WCC attorneys, especially well-known litigators, therefore sensing their second class status in the large firms firm, left to form their own boutiques. Pepper and Rooney was one such firm.

Adam, Ansel, Pepper, often referred to as “First” or among his close friends as “Al” was one of the reigning heavyweights of the practice. He was tall, whippet thin but obviously in shape, hawk nosed and dark hair expensively dyed. He was dressed in the overpriced casual style affected by successful San Francisco attorneys; designer jeans, bespoke shoes, costly subtly patterned dress shirt worn without tie with sleeves meticulously rolled up to reveal precisely one-quarter of the forearm.

Upon entering the First’s sanctum, Vince was made to stand briefly as the great one pantomimed finishing up some exceedingly important task. He stood up, reached his hand across the desk and as they shook hands said with a frosty smile, “Mr Biondi, it is a pleasure meeting you finally. I know you must be very busy getting settled in your new position.” As he resumed his seat in his expensively leathered, throne like mechanical marvel of a chair, he added genially “How is that going?”

Vince refusing to take the bait at $1000 per hour, responded “I am here to get your advice about how I should go about arranging for the suspension from the partnership of all those partners involved in the ‘Red Star’ matter on which your firm is representing ours.” (Continued)


a. Today’s chart:

Population distribution on earth (2007):
What should be noted as an error in the chart is that East Asia (China, Japan and Korea) is a quite separate entity from South Asia (India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Indonesia and South-East Asia, and South-West Asia). The latter actually dwarfs East Asia in population and economic and population growth.* One also should note that the “West” (North, Central and South America, Russia, Europe and Australia and New Zealand) also contains about 30% of the world’s population, more than China or East Asia. The so-called “West” also occupies, by far, the largest portion of the earth’s land mass, arable land and natural resources. Africa contains and will continue to support the fastest population growth on the planet.

*Thus, population distribution on earth can also be looked at as basically comprising only 4 major population zones, East Asia, South Asia, The West and Africa. With the world potentially poised on the edge of massive migrations of Peoples from the desertifying portions of the world, distribution of Peoples will change, with the affected South Asian and African populations colonizing large portions of the western world.

Advice you should be giving your children is to marry South Asians or Africans, or advise them to move to Canada or Siberia and counsel any of their children born there to so marry.

b. Trenz Pruca’s Aphorisms, Apothegms, Epigrams and Maxims ( :

On Economics as a Science:

In Science, a physical theory that is logically consistent may be considered truth only until falsified. In Economics, a sociological theory that is logically inconsistent is often considered true even when falsified.


By popular request:

“Now listen to me and I will advise you for your good: give me back my son and get out of my country with your forces intact, and be content with your triumph over one-third of the Massagetae. If you refuse, I swear by the sun our master to give you more blood than you can drink, for all your gluttony.”

Queen Tomyris Receiving the Head of Cyrus, Kin...

Queen Tomyris Receiving the Head of Cyrus, King of Persia (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Tomyris Warrior Queen of the Massegetae to Cyrus the Great, Emperor of Persia, conqueror of the greatest empire of the ancient world and leader of the largest and most technologically advanced army of the time. Cyrus refused and Tomyris personally led the charge of her forces that destroyed his army. After her victory, she searched the battlefield herself until she found Cyrus’ body, then she cut off his head and made his skull into her favorite wine goblet.

(Never mess with a woman named Tomyris, or for that matter a Massegetae. For those interested however, this is what the ancient Greek historian Herodotus had to say about them:

“In their dress and mode of living the Massagetae resemble the Scythians. They fight both on horseback and on foot, neither method is strange to them: they use bows and lances, but their favorite weapon is the battle-axe. Their arms are all either of gold or brass. For their spear-points, and arrow-heads, and for their battle-axes, they make use of brass; for head-gear, belts, and girdles, of gold. So too with the caparison of their horses, they give them breastplates of brass, but employ gold about the reins, the bit, and the cheek-plates. They use neither iron nor silver, having none in their country; but they have brass and gold in abundance.”
“The following are some of their customs; – Each man has but one wife, yet all the wives are held in common; for this is a custom of the Massagetae and not of the Scythians, as the Greeks wrongly say. Human life does not come to its natural close with this people; but when a man grows very old, all his kinsfolk collect together and offer him up in sacrifice; offering at the same time some cattle also. After the sacrifice they boil the flesh and feast on it; and those who thus end their days are reckoned the happiest. If a man dies of disease they do not eat him, but bury him in the ground, bewailing his ill-fortune that he did not come to be sacrificed. They sow no grain, but live on their herds, and on fish, of which there is great plenty in the Jaxartes. Milk is what they chiefly drink. The only god they worship is the sun, and to him they offer the horse in sacrifice; under the notion of giving to the swiftest of the gods the swiftest of all mortal creatures.”

Categories: April 2011 through June 2011 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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