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2020.09.11 00:24 TheRazorX which civilian oversight is now a bad thing "Cause Trump"

I rarely post essays.
As someone who's lived in other parts of the world, I've been watching events unfold with a severe dread that surpasses Trump's worst desires (or projected desires).
The thing I fear, is not Trump "winning, it's not Biden "Winning", it's not even directly related to the election itself, rather it's summarized in Friedrich Nietzsche's famous quote;
He who fights with monsters should look to it that he himself does not become a monster. And if you gaze long into an abyss, the abyss also gazes into you.
This quote while widespread is often ignored or dismissed as a side point, however I've long since come to the conclusion that the intense polarization is intended as a feature not a bug, and Trump is just merely a tool in the plan that has been underway for decades.
We've reached the point where BOTH Republicans AND Democrats (speaking of actual regular voters, not politicians or bots, or those minorities on either side that were already "extremists");
Myself and thousands of others that have traveled or lived in "less free" parts of the world have constantly warned of the similarities of the "But Trump" Boogeyman strategy, and of the dangers of this strategy coming to fruition, people from those regions have spoken the warnings clearly in English and of course we're ridiculed attacked and most importantly ignored.. Because "it can't happen here". Furthermore, the truth is, we've seen many "Trumps" before in recent times.
Anyone that has ever looked at any "Authoritarian" country, recognizes a very simple fact; People enable and allow said tyranny. Consent of the Governed is in fact given to both Democratic leaders and Authoritarian leaders.
In each and every one of these countries, no matter how despicable their leaders, they always manage to find support out of a fear of one or many "Boogeymen". In MENA, the holy trinity of Boogeymen is; The USA, Israel, The Muslim Brotherhood. And depending on which part of MENA, either Iran/Saudi.
Anything and everything wrong with the country, is the fault of one of those Boogeymen, and as a result quite a few people will hate their leaders openly, know they're corrupt thieves, murderers, pedophiles...etc but still back them because at least they're "protecting us from X". They'll be outraged at whatever crime the regime commits against the people, but willingly eat up the pro-regime propaganda because "They were trouble makers that deserved it" or "They were agents of Israel/USA" or "This is a plot by Israel/USA/Iran/Saudi"..etc. The list goes on and on and on. So much so that a common "twisting" of Karl Marx's adage on religion is "Israel is the Opiate of the Arabs", a concept naturally twisted by pro-Israel parties to deflect away from Israel's actual crimes, using typical "Whataboutism"
Sound familiar?
There's no doubt those "Boogeymen" are scary and regularly commit crimes. But the fact that someone commits crimes, has never ever meant that others have not themselves committed crimes. But they want you to think that, or even worse, they want the crimes of said Boogeymen to excuse the crimes of those in their own tribes.
There's a very real reason the astroturfing efforts are focused on "So you want Trump to win?" and "So you're voting for Trump?" type messages when trying to "convince" voters to back Biden that are skeptical. So much so, they haven't even bothered to pretend otherwise. They want binary.
There's a very very VERY good reason that Bernie said we need a global progressive front, and that Yanis Varoufakis agreed., What we're seeing happen in the USA, we saw before in multiple countries. They understand that with corporate authoritarian power going multinational and coordinating on an international basis, we need an international front to fight it, and not just focus on "local" stuff, because as I'm trying to point out, you end up seeing the same tactics happen elsewhere because even those that bother to pay cursory attention think or say "it can't happen here", or more importantly, even if they do understand the possibility of it "happening here" only see it in the light of tribalism, where only "The other" is willing or capable to bring it to fruition.
We're now at the point where civilian oversight of an election is considered a "bad thing" by "Liberals", "cause Drumpf", this isn't the first (or even last) time I've heard something similar. For example, it's anecdotal, but a friend reported once that during a conversation, a very liberal and otherwise "normal" but very "Dem" co-worker mentioned that she found it "extremely creepy" that a Bernie supporter was video taping her counting votes at a precinct in 2016 when she was a volunteer poll worker. She obviously wasn't a Bernie fan.

That is the bigger threat, that is the bigger "goal" that you can easily trace going back to 1971 or even 1933. This is the culmination of everything, including Trump and the Pied Piper strategy (A strategy they continue to repeat even though we've already seen and felt the real results of it on actual people, specifically the most disadvantaged); To effectively and gradually "guide" the populace into accepting tyranny and fascism, either out of exploiting their fears, or out of giving them a sense of self righteousness in which suppressing "the other" is for a "righteous cause" or "the greater good". They've slowly convinced a large group of people across political ideologies that "Stability is more important than Freedom", Something we've seen said before by Trump's "Favorite Dictator", causing a perception shift here in the USA that we're seeing happen in real time., largely mirroring the sentiment in "non-free" countries

You're either with us, or against us is now the rallying cry across the board.. one we've heard before even here in the USA, a message that when last we heard it, it was used to justify one of the worst crimes of the modern era
The intense polarization of America along acceptance of authoritarian tolerance is a feature, not a bug. To quote the pinned tweet of one of the aforementioned accounts;
“The junk merchant doesn't sell his product to the consumer, he sells the consumer to his product. He does not improve and simplify his merchandise. He degrades and simplifies the client.”
~William S. Burroughs, Naked Lunch
Multiple studies from reputable sources have sounded the alarm that faith in democracy is fading fast, but once again, no one is listening, even when "Liberal" favorites talk about it.
To give you an example of what I mean, folks wanting the government to "verify" news (to combat fake news), completely forget (or intentionally omit) the fact that the very same laws they're recommending have already been implemented in multiple countries and only benefit the ruling regime, who use them as just another tool to silence dissident. Furthermore, there are other methods of combating disinformation that don't erode civil liberties., but we rarely hear about them in public discourse, the choice we're always given is "Give up this right, or suffer the consequences".
And a crucial but (intentionally?) overlooked fact on the free-speech debate, starts cutting through all the fog;
“Constitutional protection should be accorded only to speech that is explicitly political,” he wrote. “There is no basis for judicial intervention to protect any other form of expression, be it scientific, literary or that variety of expression we call obscene or pornographic.”
But a transformative ruling by the Supreme Court five years later began to change that thinking. The case, a challenge to a state law that banned advertising the prices of prescription drugs, was filed by Public Citizen, a consumer rights group founded by Ralph Nader. The group argued that the law hurt consumers, and helped persuade the court, in Virginia State Board of Pharmacy v. Virginia Citizens Consumer Council, to protect advertising and other commercial speech.
The only dissent in the decision came from Justice William H. Rehnquist, the court’s most conservative member.
Kathleen M. Sullivan, a former dean of Stanford Law School, wrote that it did not take long for corporations to see the opportunities presented by the decision.
“While the case was litigated by consumer protection advocates,” she wrote in the Harvard Law Review, “corporate speakers soon became the principal beneficiaries of subsequent rulings that, for example, struck down restrictions on including alcohol content on beer can labels, limitations on outdoor tobacco advertising near schools and rules governing how compounded drugs may be advertised.”
That trend has continued, with businesses mounting First Amendment challenges to gun control laws, securities regulations, country-of-origin labels, graphic cigarette warnings and limits on off-label drug marketing.
“I was a bit queasy about it because I had the sense that we were unleashing something, but nowhere near what happened,” Mr. Nader said. “It was one of the biggest boomerangs in judicial cases ever.”
“I couldn’t be Merlin,” he added. “We never thought the judiciary would be as conservative or corporate. This was an expansion that was not preordained by doctrine. It was preordained by the political philosophies of judges.”
Not all of the liberal scholars and lawyers who helped create modern First Amendment law are disappointed. Martin Redish, a law professor at Northwestern University, who wrote a seminal 1971 article proposing First Amendment protection for commercial speech, said he was pleased with the Roberts court’s decisions.
“Its most important contributions are in the commercial speech and corporate speech areas,” he said. “It’s a workmanlike, common sense approach.”
Liberals also played a key role in creating modern campaign finance law in Buckley v. Valeo, the 1976 decision that struck down limits on political spending by individuals and was the basis for Citizens United, the 2010 decision that did away with similar limits for corporations and unions.
One plaintiff was Senator Eugene J. McCarthy, Democrat of Minnesota, who had challenged President Lyndon B. Johnson in the 1968 presidential primaries — from the left. Another was the American Civil Liberties Union’s New York affiliate.
Professor Neuborne, a former A.C.L.U. lawyer, said he now regrets the role he played in winning the case. “I signed the brief in Buckley,” he said. “I’m going to spend long amounts of time in purgatory.”
To Professor Seidman, cases like these were part of what he describes as a right-wing takeover of the First Amendment since the liberal victories in the years Chief Justice Earl Warren led the Supreme Court.
“With the receding of Warren court liberalism, free-speech law took a sharp right turn,” Professor Seidman wrote in a new article to be published in the Columbia Law Review. “Instead of providing a shield for the powerless, the First Amendment became a sword used by people at the apex of the American hierarchy of power. Among its victims: proponents of campaign finance reform, opponents of cigarette addiction, the L.B.G.T.Q. community, labor unions, animal rights advocates, environmentalists, targets of hate speech and abortion providers.
Yet, almost all the discourse in free speech debates/"Cancel culture" is focused on anything EXCEPT the corporate aspect, and naturally ignores the only groups actually and truly at a disadvantage.. Joy Ann Reid's was never "cancelled" for her Islamophobia, bigotry, racism, antisemitism...etc , but was rather rewarded with a prime time show, and many of the same "liberals" applaud her regularly.
And obviously on the Right, none of them are "Cancelled" for any obvious transgressions.
It starts getting clearer when you realize what types of people are "agreeing" with each other on the subject, and who certain folks decided to target
All that paints a very clear picture; Only your rights should be revoked. "We" should be given a pass.
Side note; I also find it interesting how many twisted abuses can be traced back to the corporate response to Nader's (at the time) very effective citizen activism.. That was the pivotal moment. Which makes it all the easier to see how they so effectively managed to turn him into a pariah.
On a related note, Information warfare has been predicted to be the new major war front at least as far back as 1996, so this isn't something they just started thinking about in 2016, contrary to popular perception. Hell, an extremely popular anime talked of it in the early 2000s, and fictionally exhibited things we see in reality today.
Even Bin Laden, the infamous terrorist, understood the ramifications, and considered it a primary tenant of his "Death by a thousand cuts" strategy, although he was primary focused on inflicting economic harm.
And "we" walked right into it willingly. Why? Well perhaps this next quote will shed some light;
Richard Shultz, a professor of international politics at Tufts who’s long been a key national security state intellectual, wrote in 2004 that “A very senior [Special Operations Forces] officer who had served on the Joint Staff in the 1990s told me that more than once he heard terrorist strikes characterized as ‘a small price to pay for being a superpower.’
Again, the missed subtext is clear; Human lives lost in terrorism attacks (and increased radicalization due to US actions leading to more potential terrorist attacks) are a cheap price for global (and more importantly economic) dominance. By extension, one can assume that human lives lost to other corporate goals are also considered a "cheap cost".

This is NOT ok.

Speaking of radicalization and Al-Qaeda....
What did the founding fathers (that conservatives love to reference) think of stuff like this?
Abraham Lincoln warned in February 15, 1848, of the dangers of "Only I see and understand the danger, only I can protect you" type politics.
Allow the President to invade a neighboring nation whenever he shall deem it necessary to repel an invasion, and you allow him to do so whenever he may choose to say he deems it necessary for such purpose, and you allow him to make war at pleasure. Study to see if you can fix any limit to his power in this respect, after having given him so much as you propose. If to-day he should choose to say he thinks it necessary to invade Canada to prevent the British from invading us, how could you stop him? You may say to him,—”I see no probability of the British invading us”; but he will say to you, “Be silent: I see it, if you don’t.”
The provision of the Constitution giving the war making power to Congress was dictated, as I understand it, by the following reasons: kings had always been involving and impoverishing their people in wars, pretending generally, if not always, that the good of the people was the object. This our convention understood to be the most oppressive of all kingly oppressions, and they resolved to so frame the Constitution that no one man should hold the power of bringing this oppression upon us. But your view destroys the whole matter, and places our President where kings have always stood. Write soon again.
James Madison on Friday, February 8th, 1788 warned;
But the great security against a gradual concentration of the several powers in the same department, consists in giving to those who administer each department the necessary constitutional means and personal motives to resist encroachments of the others. The provision for defense must in this, as in all other cases, be made commensurate to the danger of attack. Ambition must be made to counteract ambition. The interest of the man must be connected with the constitutional rights of the place. It may be a reflection on human nature, that such devices should be necessary to control the abuses of government. But what is government itself, but the greatest of all reflections on human nature? If men were angels, no government would be necessary. If angels were to govern men, neither external nor internal controls on government would be necessary. In framing a government which is to be administered by men over men, the great difficulty lies in this: you must first enable the government to control the governed; and in the next place oblige it to control itself. A dependence on the people is, no doubt, the primary control on the government; but experience has taught mankind the necessity of auxiliary precautions.
What's often missed, is the subtext of Madison's warning, and central to the thesis of this essay, clarifies that yes, Government is supposed to represent the will of the people (or what they're willing to tolerate), but what happens when "the people" are "guided" to a particular view? Why is propaganda so prevalent and effective? Why do we reject the very clear evidence and science that entire populations can in fact be "rewired" to a particular view?
In other words, combining the warnings of Nietzsche, Lincoln and Madison's warning leads to the conclusion that yes, if "properly guided" the people can be taught to "yearn for a king", something which again, we've seen happen in practice across the world.
In closing, while none of this information is new but we're reaching the apex of a long arc, and if you've read this and thought one or more of;
Then you're exactly part of the problem I'm warning of. I'm not saying vote for Trump, I'm not saying vote for Biden. I'm not saying to vote at all, or that voting actually has much to do with it in the first place.
I'm pointing out a very simple fact expressed once by Benjamin Franklin, and even though the context was endlessly butchered, the real context makes it far more relevant;
In January 1775 Benjamin Franklin (1796-1790) was part of an American delegation sent to Britain in an attempt to resolve the outstanding disagreements between the Crown and the colonies. Seventeen points were up for discussion of which several were rejected outright by the Crown while others were rejected by the colonies. Franklin’s comments regarding the last two points produced one of his most famous sayings from the period:
As to the other two acts, (i.e. 16. The American admiralty courts reduced to the same powers they have in England, and the acts establishing them to be reënacted in America; and 17. All powers of internal legislation in the colonies to be disclaimed by Parliament) the Massachusetts (sic) must suffer all the hazards and mischiefs of war rather than admit the alteration of their charters and laws by Parliament. ‘They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety.’
The context explained in the analysis makes it ever more clear;
It is interesting to see where the main lines of disagreement lay between the colonists' delegation to London and the Crown in early 1775 which one would think would have been the last opportunity at some kind of reconciliation before independence was declared and war broke out. The sticking points for the Crown were the 8th, 11th, and 17th Articles which were declared to be “inadmissible” or were “refused absolutely”: “8. No troops to enter and quarter in any colony, but with the consent of its legislature. 11. The late Massachusetts and Quebec Acts to be repealed, and a free government granted to Canada. 17. All powers of internal legislation in the colonies to be disclaimed by Parliament.” The payment of back taxes might be negotiable but when it came to the stationing of troops or placing limits on the power of Parliament over colonial legislatures no compromise was possible without giving up political power. Franklin’s remarks about the trade offs between “essential liberty” and “a little temporary safety” seem to have been directed at those in the colonies who could see that further compromise was no longer possible by the Crown and that it was up to the colonies to cave in in order to maintain the peace. Franklin was urging them that to do this would be to give up the entire game and thereby scuttle any chance for real liberty and independence in the colonies.

The king is dead, long live the king.

TL;DR : Shit is fucked. Read it.
submitted by TheRazorX to WayOfTheBern [link] [comments]

2020.09.09 23:36 lamyea01 Proof that the Prophet PBUH did split the moon

I have been wanting to make this post for a long time.
I saw a muslim sibling on reddit discussing with a non-muslim regarding the splitting of the moon. The non-muslim said that we muslims have no evidence nor historical records of the moon splitting and our muslim sibling replied with saying that we muslims don't truly believe that the moon was split, we believe that it is metaphorical and not literal.
I do not blame them, as they may not have come across substantial proof in order to refute the non-muslim.
For this reason, I wanted to show fellow muslims the top 4 (of what I call) evidence that the moon was split by the Prophet. But before that, context:
How did the Miracle of the Splitting of the Moon occur?
The miracle of the splitting of the moon occurred before the migration to Medina (2) upon the demands of the polytheists with the permission of God and it was shown by the prophet Muhammad (PBUH) as narrated by many companions like Anas b. Malik (3), Hz. Ali, Huzayfa b. Yaman (4), Abdullah b. Mas’ud (5), Abdullah b. Abbas (6), Abdullah b. Umar (7), Abdullah b. Amr b. As (8), Jubayr b. Mut’im (9) (May Allah be pleased with all of them). (10)
Among Quraish polytheists, Walid b. Mughira, Abu Jahl. As b. Wail, As b. Hisham, Aswad b. Abdi Yaghus, Aswad b. Muttalib, Zama b. Aswad, Nadr b. Harith and others (11) said to the prophet Muhammad (PBUH):
“If you truly are a Prophet that has been appointed by Allah, then split the moon in half. Let it be in such a way that one half will appear over the Mount Abu Qubais and the other half will be seen over Mount Quayqian.”
The prophet Muhammad (PBUH) asked: “If I do it, will you become Muslims?”
The polytheists answered: “Yes, we will.”
On the 14th night, when it was full moon, the prophet Muhammad (PBUH) wanted Almighty Allah to give him the miracle which the polytheists demanded from him. (12)
When the Gabriel (AS) informed the prophet Muhammad (PBUH) that God had accepted his prayer, he announced it to the Meccans. The polytheists witnessed the splitting of the moon on the 14th night. (13)
When Almighty God let the moon split in half, one half standing over Mount Abu Qubais and the other half over Mount Quayqian, the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) shouted at Muslims:
“O Abu Salama b. Abdulasad! Arqam b. Abi’l Erqam! Bear witness! (14)
And to the polytheists, he said, “Bear witness! So and so! (15)
However, the polytheists said “This is one of the spells of Abu Kabsha’s Son.” (16) “The son of Abu Kabsha cast a spell on you!” (17) They said “Muhammad cast a spell on us!” (18)
Some of them also said:
“If Muhammad had cast a spell on us then (19), He couldn’t have cast a spell on everyone! (20) Let us ask the wayfarers who came from the surrounding areas (21) if they saw what we saw.” (21)
They asked the people who came from every everywhere. (22-23)
“Yes! We also did see the moon in that state! We saw the moon as split! They informed that the moon was split. Among the people who came from everywhere and seen the moon split, there was no one who had not informed them about it. (24)
However, the polytheists rejected to be Muslims and to believe by saying: “This is a prevalent magic!” (25), they said “Abu Talib’s orphan affected the sky with his spell!” (26).
Now onto the proofs
Proof no.4: NASA
This is one of my evidence but it does have its criticisms hence it is my no.4 evidence. Brothers and sisters I highly recommend you see through this sideshow as the evidence by NASA has a lot of information that I cannot do it justice by writing it in this post:
According to muslim researchers, there are proofs of the splitting of the moon in pictures of the moon taken by NASA's missions.
After Apollo mission photographs were published of Rima Ariadaeus, the 300 km-long rift line on the surface of the Moon,[16] it was suggested by Muslims on some internet sites that this was result of the splitting mentioned in the Quran.
The surface of the moon is replete with long channels or grooves that continue to create unsolved puzzles and contradictions for geologists. Every traditional theory, when tested against photographic evidence, has failed. Planetary scientists often say that it was formed by molten lava and they draw comparisons to lava channels in Hawaii. But the differences between the two are so profound as to render such comparisons meaningless.
Rima Ariadaeus is the rille that is usually referred to as the scar of the split that happened as a miracle of the Prophet PBUH, show clearly that it's a relatively small scar on the face of the moon and doesn't extend across the length of the moon as one would expect.
In 2010, NASA scientist Brad Bailey was asked about this and replied "My recommendation is to not believe everything you read on the internet. Peer-reviewed papers are the only scientifically valid sources of information out there. No current scientific evidence reports that the Moon was split into two (or more) parts and then reassembled at any point in the past."
Does this mean the split never happen? Does that disprove the miracle?
Even though the pictures can not be used as a strong evidence of the miracle that happened in the 7th century A.D. yet there's still no conclusive explanation to the origins of the structures in question.
Proof no.3: Authenticated Hadiths
Abdullah ibn Mas’ud reported: The moon split when we were with the Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, and it became two separate pieces. The Prophet said to us, “Bear witness. Bear witness.”
In another narration, Ibn Mas’ud said, “A piece was behind the mountain and another piece was below it.” Source: Ṣaḥīḥ al-Bukhārī 4584, Ṣaḥīḥ Muslim 2800 Grade: Muttafaqun Alayhi (authenticity agreed upon) according to Al-Bukhari and Muslim عَنْ عَبْدِ اللَّهِ بْنِ مَسْعُودٍ قَالَ انْشَقَّ الْقَمَرُ وَنَحْنُ مَعَ النَّبِيِّ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ فَصَارَ فِرْقَتَيْنِ فَقَالَ لَنَا اشْهَدُوا اشْهَدُوا وفي رواية أخرى قال ابن مسعود فَكَانَتْ فِلْقَةٌ وَرَاءَ الْجَبَلِ وَفِلْقَةٌ دُونَهُ 4584 صحيح البخاري كتاب تفسير القرآن سورة اقتربت الساعة باب وانشق القمر وإن يروا آية يعرضوا 2800 صحيح مسلم كتاب صفة القيامة والجنة والنار باب انشقاق القمر
Muttafaqun Alayi: When the Hadith Masters use this term, it means that the Hadith in question is found in both books; Sahih Bukhari & Sahih Muslim, on the authority of the same Sahabi (radiyallahu’anhu) even if there exists variation in the wording.
Authenticated hadiths are a good historical record as Al-Bukhari used rigorous means to verify and authenticate the hadiths. To us muslims, these are substantial pieces of record that prove the event of the moon splitting.
Proof no.2: Other historical records
The Mayans recorded the miracle!
At the top of page 139 in the 1997 Maya Hieroglyphic Forum, the dot and bar numbers have been inserted as corrections for the tops of the other columns (missing in V and K's works). On the basis of the number sequences, the date of the first (and, what I am surmising, was the original change) is or the Gregorian date of 9 February 623 (the Julian date calculated the 6th of February, that same year).
But, if one reads the Rabbit and the Mirror, one will see, that not only was the rabbit a new addition to the home of the moon goddess, but also the cosmic tree (probably the Milky Way) was new. Being held up to the mirror, the rabbit is shown where it was then (now) located, not how it was born. In agreement with that statement is vase K2772. It shows the same three women as in the so-called birth scene, but instead of a pregnant woman with two midwives, it shows that the palace of the moon is being shaken by a quake, indicated by the same "question mark" curls found in the ears of the split-faced moon rabbit and identified by Eric Thompson as a symbol of the Moon Goddess glyphs. This "quake" or catastrophe is well recorded world-wide, even in Peru as the Rebellion of the Artifacts.The rabbit arrives later to view, in the mirror, the new star arrangement of the skies
The rabbit replaced the monkey (possibly the old north star?) As the records of time and became a very important figure with the same split face of the moon, with a the same question mark curl in each ear. And later (K1491) where the rabbit waits for the monkey to finish his final work.
Indians saw the miracle too!
Of interest in relation to the moon splitting an Indian historical manuscript (India Office Library, London, manuscript #2807/152-173), which says that this incident was observed by the Indian king of Malibar, Chakrawati Farmas- was the starting point of Islam spreading to India. It was also mentioned in the book "Muhammad Rasulullah," by M. Hamidullah.
On a moon-lit night the Indian King Chakrawati, while walking on the rooftop of his palace along with the queen saw the moon suddenly splitting into two halves. Later he came to know through Arab traders that a prophet called Muhammad PBUH had wrought a miracle on that fateful night and sundered the moon before the crowd of dazed spectators.
Learning on inquiry that there was a prediction of the coming if a Messenger of God from Arabia, he appointed his son as regent and set out to meet him. He embraced Islam at the hand of the Prophet.
The king died on his way back to India but wrote letters to the local rulers of Malabar to "help construct mosques at Kodungallur and elsewhere". The rulers of Kerala honoured his wishes and built mosques in the early 7th century, one of them being Cheraman Malik Masjid at Kodungallur, said to be one of the oldest in the sub-continent.
Travellers from Syria and Yemen also witnessed the splitting of the moon that night!
Narrated by Anas ibn Malik (Al-Bukhari)
"The Makkan people requested Allah's messenger to show them a miracle, and so he showed them the splitting of the moon.
At this point, some of the wise men explained that magic could only affect the attendees whereas it cannot maintain influence on everybody in general. They waited for travellers who were coming back from their journeys. The pagans hurried up to the borders of Mecca in anticipation to meet the travellers.
When the first arrivals appeared, they asked them did you see anything extraordinary happened to the moon?
The travellers answered 'yes, on one night we saw the moon splitting into two parts which remained asunder for some time then reattached.'
Upon this statement, a number of the group believed while the rest remained pagans.
But I have heard people say, especially ex-muslims, "this is hocus pocus, if Muhammad PBUH did split the moon, then why didnt the Europeans record it? After all, the Roman empire was still around. It's hard to believe that if the moon was split, why more people wouldn't record such phenomena"
This is easily explained with this case study:
At the beginning of the 20th century, people lived with the well-established idea of a static universe where the motion of stars never varies. This is probably due to Aristotle's teachings, stating that the sky is immutable, unlike Earth, which is perishable. This idea caused a historical anomaly:
in 1054, the Chinese noticed the appearance of new light in the sky, but no European document mentions it!
Yet it could be seen in full daylight and lasted for several weeks.
It was a supernova, that is, a dying star, the remnants of which can still be seen as the Crab Nebula. Predominant thought in Europe prevented people from accepting a phenomenon that so utterly contradicted the idea of an unchanging sky. A supernova is a very rare event, which can only be observed by the naked eye once a century. The most recent one dates back to 1987. So Aristotle was almost right in thinking that the sky was unchanging - on the scale of a human life at least.
This article can be found here:
If the Europeans were unwilling to document a supernova in 1054, what makes you think they would be even more willing to document in the 7th century?
Subhan'Allah, we are now at our last proof of the splitting of the moon:
Proof no.1: The Qur'an
Almighty God mentions this miracle in the chapter of al-Qamar 1-5 as follows:
“The hour (of Judgment) is nigh, and The moon is cleft asunder.
But if they see a Sign, they turn away, and say "This is (but) transient magic."
They reject (the warning) and follow their (own) lusts but every matter has its appointed time.
There have already come to them Recitals wherein there is (enough) to check (them),
Mature wisdom― but (the preaching of) Warners profits them not.” (27)
How does this show that the miracle occurred?
Well, the Quran is telling us the the Prophet split the moon, but the disbelievers said that it was magic.
Remember, this verse wasn't preached once, recorded and never preached again. The Prophet repeatedly preached this exact verse to his followers and the non-muslims for decades. The non-muslims never refuted this verse!
The people that aren't even muslims, the paganists, NEVER SAID THAT THE MOON WASN'T SPLIT!!!!!
Even Al-Tabari, the one who wrote down whatever rumour he heard, the one who wrote down about the rumours of the Satanic Verses, NEVER wrote down anywhere that the pagans did not see the moon split.
The pagans saw the moon split and said "oh, it's just MAGIC!"
Never did they say "huh? A split moon? Never occured. Fake news"
Subhan'Allah, the biggest proof of the moon splitting isn't even from the muslims, but the non-muslims. They are the ones who authenticated the verse by claiming Allah did not allow Muhammad PBUH to split the moon, Muhammad PBUH performed magic! They are the witnesses of the miracles!
Allahu Akbar! The Qur'an is the biggest miracle and historical record we have of the moon splitting!
The Holy Quran is a miracle by itself, and a book full of all sorts of miracles. We as muslims should wholeheartedly have faith in the Quran and not attempt to explain scientific miracles of the Quran in a way that does harm the credibility of the holy book.
There is no need to exaggerate certain evidences to make them fit some facts mentioned in the Quran.
Until recently, a lot of the scientific facts in the Quran were in contradiction with the scientific theories at the time. Yet this never meant that the science is right and the Quran was wrong.
In many cases, new discoveries proved the old theories wrong and the Quran right (like the expansion of the universe for example.)
In other cases, our interpretation of the Quranic verses was wrong.
Either way, as a Muslim, the Quran's credibility is above any doubt. So as Muslims, hold the Quran over your own beliefs as nothing is as perfect as the Holy Quran.
I hope you found this interesting. Insha'Allah these are enough proofs of the miracle.
submitted by lamyea01 to MuslimLounge [link] [comments]

2020.09.09 23:22 lamyea01 Proving that the Prophet PBUH did split the moon

I have been wanting to make this post for a long time.
I saw a muslim sibling on reddit discussing with a non-muslim regarding the splitting of the moon. The non-muslim said that we muslims have no evidence nor historical records of the moon splitting and our muslim sibling replied with saying that we muslims don't truly believe that the moon was split, we believe that it is metaphorical and not literal.
I do not blame them, as they may not have come across substantial proof in order to refute the non-muslim.
For this reason, I wanted to show fellow muslims the top 4 (of what I call) evidence that the moon was split by the Prophet. But before that, context:
How did the Miracle of the Splitting of the Moon occur?
The miracle of the splitting of the moon occurred before the migration to Medina (2) upon the demands of the polytheists with the permission of God and it was shown by the prophet Muhammad (PBUH) as narrated by many companions like Anas b. Malik (3), Hz. Ali, Huzayfa b. Yaman (4), Abdullah b. Mas’ud (5), Abdullah b. Abbas (6), Abdullah b. Umar (7), Abdullah b. Amr b. As (8), Jubayr b. Mut’im (9) (May Allah be pleased with all of them). (10)
Among Quraish polytheists, Walid b. Mughira, Abu Jahl. As b. Wail, As b. Hisham, Aswad b. Abdi Yaghus, Aswad b. Muttalib, Zama b. Aswad, Nadr b. Harith and others (11) said to the prophet Muhammad (PBUH):
“If you truly are a Prophet that has been appointed by Allah, then split the moon in half. Let it be in such a way that one half will appear over the Mount Abu Qubais and the other half will be seen over Mount Quayqian.”
The prophet Muhammad (PBUH) asked: “If I do it, will you become Muslims?”
The polytheists answered: “Yes, we will.”
On the 14th night, when it was full moon, the prophet Muhammad (PBUH) wanted Almighty Allah to give him the miracle which the polytheists demanded from him. (12)
When the Gabriel (AS) informed the prophet Muhammad (PBUH) that God had accepted his prayer, he announced it to the Meccans. The polytheists witnessed the splitting of the moon on the 14th night. (13)
When Almighty God let the moon split in half, one half standing over Mount Abu Qubais and the other half over Mount Quayqian, the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) shouted at Muslims:
“O Abu Salama b. Abdulasad! Arqam b. Abi’l Erqam! Bear witness! (14)
And to the polytheists, he said, “Bear witness! So and so! (15)
However, the polytheists said “This is one of the spells of Abu Kabsha’s Son.” (16) “The son of Abu Kabsha cast a spell on you!” (17) They said “Muhammad cast a spell on us!” (18)
Some of them also said:
“If Muhammad had cast a spell on us then (19), He couldn’t have cast a spell on everyone! (20) Let us ask the wayfarers who came from the surrounding areas (21) if they saw what we saw.” (21)
They asked the people who came from every everywhere. (22-23)
“Yes! We also did see the moon in that state! We saw the moon as split! They informed that the moon was split. Among the people who came from everywhere and seen the moon split, there was no one who had not informed them about it. (24)
However, the polytheists rejected to be Muslims and to believe by saying: “This is a prevalent magic!” (25), they said “Abu Talib’s orphan affected the sky with his spell!” (26).
Now onto the proofs
Proof no.4: NASA
This is one of my evidence but it does have its criticisms hence it is my no.4 evidence. Brothers and sisters I highly recommend you see through this sideshow as the evidence by NASA has a lot of information that I cannot do it justice by writing it in this post:
According to muslim researchers, there are proofs of the splitting of the moon in pictures of the moon taken by NASA's missions.
After Apollo mission photographs were published of Rima Ariadaeus, the 300 km-long rift line on the surface of the Moon,[16] it was suggested by Muslims on some internet sites that this was result of the splitting mentioned in the Quran.
The surface of the moon is replete with long channels or grooves that continue to create unsolved puzzles and contradictions for geologists. Every traditional theory, when tested against photographic evidence, has failed. Planetary scientists often say that it was formed by molten lava and they draw comparisons to lava channels in Hawaii. But the differences between the two are so profound as to render such comparisons meaningless.
Rima Ariadaeus is the rille that is usually referred to as the scar of the split that happened as a miracle of the Prophet PBUH, show clearly that it's a relatively small scar on the face of the moon and doesn't extend across the length of the moon as one would expect.
In 2010, NASA scientist Brad Bailey was asked about this and replied "My recommendation is to not believe everything you read on the internet. Peer-reviewed papers are the only scientifically valid sources of information out there. No current scientific evidence reports that the Moon was split into two (or more) parts and then reassembled at any point in the past."
Does this mean the split never happen? Does that disprove the miracle?
Even though the pictures can not be used as a strong evidence of the miracle that happened in the 7th century A.D. yet there's still no conclusive explanation to the origins of the structures in question.
Proof no.3: Authenticated Hadiths
Abdullah ibn Mas’ud reported: The moon split when we were with the Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, and it became two separate pieces. The Prophet said to us, “Bear witness. Bear witness.”
In another narration, Ibn Mas’ud said, “A piece was behind the mountain and another piece was below it.” Source: Ṣaḥīḥ al-Bukhārī 4584, Ṣaḥīḥ Muslim 2800 Grade: Muttafaqun Alayhi (authenticity agreed upon) according to Al-Bukhari and Muslim عَنْ عَبْدِ اللَّهِ بْنِ مَسْعُودٍ قَالَ انْشَقَّ الْقَمَرُ وَنَحْنُ مَعَ النَّبِيِّ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ فَصَارَ فِرْقَتَيْنِ فَقَالَ لَنَا اشْهَدُوا اشْهَدُوا وفي رواية أخرى قال ابن مسعود فَكَانَتْ فِلْقَةٌ وَرَاءَ الْجَبَلِ وَفِلْقَةٌ دُونَهُ 4584 صحيح البخاري كتاب تفسير القرآن سورة اقتربت الساعة باب وانشق القمر وإن يروا آية يعرضوا 2800 صحيح مسلم كتاب صفة القيامة والجنة والنار باب انشقاق القمر
Muttafaqun Alayi: When the Hadith Masters use this term, it means that the Hadith in question is found in both books; Sahih Bukhari & Sahih Muslim, on the authority of the same Sahabi (radiyallahu’anhu) even if there exists variation in the wording.
Authenticated hadiths are a good historical record as Al-Bukhari used rigorous means to verify and authenticate the hadiths. To us muslims, these are substantial pieces of record that prove the event of the moon splitting.
Proof no.2: Other historical records
The Mayans recorded the miracle!
At the top of page 139 in the 1997 Maya Hieroglyphic Forum, the dot and bar numbers have been inserted as corrections for the tops of the other columns (missing in V and K's works). On the basis of the number sequences, the date of the first (and, what I am surmising, was the original change) is or the Gregorian date of 9 February 623 (the Julian date calculated the 6th of February, that same year).
But, if one reads the Rabbit and the Mirror, one will see, that not only was the rabbit a new addition to the home of the moon goddess, but also the cosmic tree (probably the Milky Way) was new. Being held up to the mirror, the rabbit is shown where it was then (now) located, not how it was born. In agreement with that statement is vase K2772. It shows the same three women as in the so-called birth scene, but instead of a pregnant woman with two midwives, it shows that the palace of the moon is being shaken by a quake, indicated by the same "question mark" curls found in the ears of the split-faced moon rabbit and identified by Eric Thompson as a symbol of the Moon Goddess glyphs. This "quake" or catastrophe is well recorded world-wide, even in Peru as the Rebellion of the Artifacts.The rabbit arrives later to view, in the mirror, the new star arrangement of the skies
The rabbit replaced the monkey (possibly the old north star?) As the records of time and became a very important figure with the same split face of the moon, with a the same question mark curl in each ear. And later (K1491) where the rabbit waits for the monkey to finish his final work.
Indians saw the miracle too!
Of interest in relation to the moon splitting an Indian historical manuscript (India Office Library, London, manuscript #2807/152-173), which says that this incident was observed by the Indian king of Malibar, Chakrawati Farmas- was the starting point of Islam spreading to India. It was also mentioned in the book "Muhammad Rasulullah," by M. Hamidullah.
On a moon-lit night the Indian King Chakrawati, while walking on the rooftop of his palace along with the queen saw the moon suddenly splitting into two halves. Later he came to know through Arab traders that a prophet called Muhammad PBUH had wrought a miracle on that fateful night and sundered the moon before the crowd of dazed spectators.
Learning on inquiry that there was a prediction of the coming if a Messenger of God from Arabia, he appointed his son as regent and set out to meet him. He embraced Islam at the hand of the Prophet.
The king died on his way back to India but wrote letters to the local rulers of Malabar to "help construct mosques at Kodungallur and elsewhere". The rulers of Kerala honoured his wishes and built mosques in the early 7th century, one of them being Cheraman Malik Masjid at Kodungallur, said to be one of the oldest in the sub-continent.
Travellers from Syria and Yemen also witnessed the splitting of the moon that night!
Narrated by Anas ibn Malik (Al-Bukhari)
"The Makkan people requested Allah's messenger to show them a miracle, and so he showed them the splitting of the moon.
At this point, some of the wise men explained that magic could only affect the attendees whereas it cannot maintain influence on everybody in general. They waited for travellers who were coming back from their journeys. The pagans hurried up to the borders of Mecca in anticipation to meet the travellers.
When the first arrivals appeared, they asked them did you see anything extraordinary happened to the moon?
The travellers answered 'yes, on one night we saw the moon splitting into two parts which remained asunder for some time then reattached.'
Upon this statement, a number of the group believed while the rest remained pagans.
But I have heard people say, especially ex-muslims, "this is hocus pocus, if Muhammad PBUH did split the moon, then why didnt the Europeans record it? After all, the Roman empire was still around. It's hard to believe that if the moon was split, why more people wouldn't record such phenomena"
This is easily explained with this case study:
At the beginning of the 20th century, people lived with the well-established idea of a static universe where the motion of stars never varies. This is probably due to Aristotle's teachings, stating that the sky is immutable, unlike Earth, which is perishable. This idea caused a historical anomaly:
in 1054, the Chinese noticed the appearance of new light in the sky, but no European document mentions it!
Yet it could be seen in full daylight and lasted for several weeks.
It was a supernova, that is, a dying star, the remnants of which can still be seen as the Crab Nebula. Predominant thought in Europe prevented people from accepting a phenomenon that so utterly contradicted the idea of an unchanging sky. A supernova is a very rare event, which can only be observed by the naked eye once a century. The most recent one dates back to 1987. So Aristotle was almost right in thinking that the sky was unchanging - on the scale of a human life at least.
This article can be found here:
If the Europeans were unwilling to document a supernova in 1054, what makes you think they would be even more willing to document in the 7th century?
Subhan'Allah, we are now at our last proof of the splitting of the moon:
Proof no.1: The Qur'an
Almighty God mentions this miracle in the chapter of al-Qamar 1-5 as follows:
“The hour (of Judgment) is nigh, and The moon is cleft asunder.
But if they see a Sign, they turn away, and say "This is (but) transient magic."
They reject (the warning) and follow their (own) lusts but every matter has its appointed time.
There have already come to them Recitals wherein there is (enough) to check (them),
Mature wisdom― but (the preaching of) Warners profits them not.” (27)
How does this show that the miracle occurred?
Well, the Quran is telling us the the Prophet split the moon, but the disbelievers said that it was magic.
Remember, this verse wasn't preached once, recorded and never preached again. The Prophet repeatedly preached this exact verse to his followers and the non-muslims for decades. The non-muslims never refuted this verse!
The people that aren't even muslims, the paganists, NEVER SAID THAT THE MOON WASN'T SPLIT!!!!!
Even Al-Tabari, the one who wrote down whatever rumour he heard, the one who wrote down about the rumours of the Satanic Verses, NEVER wrote down anywhere that the pagans did not see the moon split.
The pagans saw the moon split and said "oh, it's just MAGIC!"
Never did they say "huh? A split moon? Never occured. Fake news"
Subhan'Allah, the biggest proof of the moon splitting isn't even from the muslims, but the non-muslims. They are the ones who authenticated the verse by claiming Allah did not allow Muhammad PBUH to split the moon, Muhammad PBUH performed magic! They are the witnesses of the miracles!
Allahu Akbar! The Qur'an is the biggest miracle and historical record we have of the moon splitting!
The Holy Quran is a miracle by itself, and a book full of all sorts of miracles. We as muslims should wholeheartedly have faith in the Quran and not attempt to explain scientific miracles of the Quran in a way that does harm the credibility of the holy book.
There is no need to exaggerate certain evidences to make them fit some facts mentioned in the Quran.
Until recently, a lot of the scientific facts in the Quran were in contradiction with he scientific theories at the time. Yet this never meant that the science is right and the Quran was wrong.
In many cases, new discoveries proved the old theories wrong and the Quran right (like the expansion of the universe for example.)
In other cases, our interpretation of the Quranic verses was wrong.
Either way, as a Muslim, the Quran's credibility is above any doubt. So as Muslims, hold the Quran over your own beliefs as nothing is as perfect as the Holy Quran.
I hope you found this interesting. Insha'Allah these are enough proofs of the miracle.
Edit: I just want to clarify as people in the comments have rightfully brought up:
Thank you to all who have replied. I am grateful that you have taken the time to read this.
I just want to clarify, I intended to write this post mainly for my muslim brothers and sisters. This miracle is one of the miracles that is associated with the Prophet PBUH but I know that a lot of muslims may have a hard time believing in its authenticity.
If I could make non-muslims interested in the deen, that would be great Alhamdulillah. However, this post is not directed at non-muslims, hence I used a lot of islamic articles as my target audience was my fellow brothers and sisters.
Insha'Allah, what I call proofs may not be proofs for many, including muslims but for me, these are the reasons in why I believe that the moon splitting miracle is authentic and real.
Take care and have a great day, salam!
Not only that, but many people have asked and enquired about the historical records from other civilisations and its validity, as well as why I even included proof no.4 when NASA themselves have said that they don't believe the moon was split in the past. Here is a comment I made that will address these concerns:
submitted by lamyea01 to islam [link] [comments]

2020.09.01 20:18 Gavin_Magnus Critique of A Cadmean Victory

A few months ago I began to read A Cadmean Victory because it is so frequently recommended in this subreddit. Yesterday I finished it, and here is a critique of it that I’ve been writing while reading, and a few suggestions of making it better. This is meant for those who have read the story and know what happens in it. If you haven’t and are going to, I warn you: spoilers ahead!
I am a very perfectionist person: I notice flaws more easily than merits. I have very high standards, and when I read a story and encounter things I don’t like, I add them to a mental list of things that should be better. I don’t have a mental list of things that are good. That’s why this review appears to be just a long list of flaws and seemingly bitter complaints, and it’s easy to come to the conclusion that I hate the story and just want to rub my bad feelings to the face of the rest of the world like some Mr Plinkett. This is not so. I actually finished reading A Cadmean Victory despite its immense length, which is rare for a fan fiction story, especially one so massive. I had to find it sufficiently entertaining (although at some points only writing this critique urged me to continue), and that means I cannot give it a mark lower than Acceptable. (Exceeds Expectations would be too much.) Please, keep that in mind. I will do my best to point out things in the story that are actually good.
The prose of the story is generally good. Not professional level, and not impressive in any point, but better than the prose in more than ninety percent of fan fiction stories. There never was a moment when the writing was so clumsy or sloppy that it would have irritated me.
However, the overall tone and, shall I say, proportions of the story feel out of place. The beginning was rushed, as if the writer just wanted to get it over with and onto the actual plot. In the very first chapter Harry is first chatting with Hermione, then gets to the Quidditch World Cup, then has some insights about the Veela, then returns to the tent with the Weasleys, then the Death Eaters attack and Harry ends up killing Barty Crouch Junior. Too much was packed in one chapter, and as a result I found it impossible to immerse in the story. It was told in a boring, emotionless tone, skipping moments when Harry probably felt varying emotions. I almost stopped reading right then.
But later in the story the writer has no trouble using several chapters to tell about trivial things. For example, the first half of Chapter 68 is just light-hearted small-talk of Harry and his friends, Katie and Neville. At that point their friendship has been established long ago. That episode serves no function whatsoever, not the plot, not character development, not anything. Parts like it should be removed. The same applies to some of the romance parts. It may be nice for the writer to imagine all these lovely dates with a dream girl, but the reader just gets bored and annoyed. It’s totally unnecessary to tell about furniture shopping in Chapter 74 when the story should be building up tension for the climax. I actually got so bored at that point that I stopped reading the story for two weeks and read two books before returned. And I returned only because I had already begun writing this review. As late in the story as in Chapter 94 the writer admits in a note that the chapter is mainly filler. Remove the filler!
Another thing where the writer uses too many words is the lectures about magic. Early in the story Harry and Salazar Slytherin’s portrait discuss many topics of magic, and the discussions are far too long and thorough. The rituals and other magic systems are probably well thought out, but they were told in the wrong way. It is unnecessary for the reader to receive all the information that Harry does. I want to read a story, not someone’s meticulously thorough deep-dive thesis about how magic works! Such knowledge has no applications in real life, and is plot-wise irrelevant even inside the story. Instead of the long dialogues it should have been told as a summarised version by the narrator, maybe spiced with some of Harry’s ideas about them.
Another huge flaw in the tone is the fact that there are climaxes and anticlimaxes over and over again, and none of them seem to have consequences to Harry’s mental state after the one in Chapter 1. In Chapter 35 he confronts Voldemort for the first time, and in Chapter 36 he is starting his relationship with Fleur, not shaken or traumatised at all. In Chapter 65 he confronts Voldemort again, and in Chapter 67 he is back at Hogwarts toying with his friends. In Chapter 76 he confronts Voldemort yet again, and in Chapter 77 he is having nice time with his friends in Diagon Alley. In Chapter 98 he confronts Voldemort once more, and Chapter 100 begins with Harry and Fleur teasing each other before the final climax begins abruptly, without much built-up tension. This makes the story feel disoriented, breaking the immersion, and the lack of mental consequences make Harry feel inhuman, like some kind of robot. More about that.
Characters are probably the most important part of any story. Relatable and likable characters make a story good even if the plot is not that good, and even a good plot doesn’t feel like much if the reader is unable to feel its impact through the characters. Sadly, A Cadmean Victory lacks this most important part. Let’s analyse the four most important characters and find out why they do not make a good story.
Harry is supposed to be a slightly more introverted version of the character we know from J. K. Rowling’s books. Until the summer of 1994 he has gone through all the same events as the canon Harry, but they have a different impact on his person due to his introversion. This starting point is a good one. I am an introvert myself, and I thought, “Good, relating to this kind of Harry should be easier!” But, like I said, Harry feels inhuman.
The main character of a story may be a hero in which case the reader relates to him, likes him, and hopes him to succeed. Or he can be a villain in which case the reader enjoys him being ruthless even though he is not a nice person. A Cadmean Victory tries to combine these two types of main character, but fails utterly. The reader is clearly supposed to like and relate to Harry, but then Harry becomes a cold-blooded murderer. He murders Rita Skeeter just because she was being annoying and because framing the murder to appear to be committed by Death Eaters was strategically beneficial, but afterwards Harry is only concerned about Fleur’s disapproval.
From that point on I could not relate to Harry, but I could not enjoy him as a villainous main character either. As far as I am concerned, at that point Harry is as evil as Voldemort, and the story is about a child who evolves into a monster. Killing Pettigrew at least felt like a justified revenge, killing Umbridge was kind of divine justice, and the killed Death Eaters can be considered casualties of war, but the Skeeter episode just convinced me that Harry is a deranged psychopath whom I would like to see dying as well. Furthermore, all the boring small-talk episodes after the murder got a creepy undertone. Here is Katie, a normal teenage girl, hanging out with his friend Harry – who has murdered a woman for being annoying and felt no guilt or remorse afterwards. How am I supposed to enjoy reading about their day when all I can think is what if Harry snaps, kills Katie, and then feels absolutely nothing?
Harry totally lacks character development. The reader gets no such insight to his mental state that would explain him becoming a murderer. To put it simply, Harry is wildly out of character, but the reader does not actually learn what kind of person he is. There are more examples of this. When he finds out that he is Voldemort’s Horcrux, he quite easily accepts the fact that he will have to die. However, for a few chapters he is absolutely adamant that “he will not become nothing” or something like that. In other words, he gets some morbid satisfaction from the thought that even though he will have to die, he will die in such a remarkable way that his heroic sacrifice will be remembered and admired. But the canon Harry was never a glory hound. I would be okay with this kind of mindset if it was explained well. It was not explained at all. I think the writer just wanted to create some contrast to the happier and more confident Harry he became, and thus he needed to have some moments of desperation and depression.
It’s generally awful to read a romance story where one side of the romance is a psychopath. However, A Cadmean Victory at least has the merit that the other side is also unlikable.
Fleur’s most important character traits are bad temper and jealousy. Whenever she has a disagreement with someone, she treats them with contempt, usually threatens them with something, and swears angrily. Whenever someone is even slightly interested in Harry, she gets mad and fantasises about setting them on fire. There are no moments when she expresses any empathy or goodwill for anyone but her family members and boyfriend. And then Fleur too becomes a cold-blooded murderess who feels no remorse after killing an underage bystander in his own home for the crime of knowing too much. Oh, and then she and Harry just go home and are jubilant about how much they love each other. How is anyone supposed to like and relate to them? A Cadmean Victory is the only piece of literature I have ever encountered in which the good looks of a girl is more important and makes up for a vile personality, and I find it quite repulsive. At least both main characters are rotten apples, so at least I don’t need to be concerned about it if they eventually kill each other.
Also, why is Fleur of all people Harry’s love interest? Her entire personality and special Veela abilities are irrelevant to the plot. Nothing would actually change if she was replaced with some other girl. Is it just the fact that Fleur is the best-looking girl in the story? I dislike stories that feel like a personal fantasy of the writer.
Also Neville is out of character. In this story he is vengeful above all else: he hates the Lestranges and Crouch Junior with rage he can barely contain, and wants to kill them personally. That is both the total antithesis of the canon Neville and implausible too. Neville was too young to know his parents, so he should not be able to feel so strongly about their fate. He would be an interesting character if he had the feeling that he should hate the Lestranges and Crouch, but actually couldn’t. Their crimes would be like the crimes of some random historical people committed against random victims: worthy of being strongly disapproved, but something he just couldn’t take personally. That’s just how emotions like this work. You can’t form strong emotions based on stories you have been told but not experienced yourself. As a result, Neville is reduced to an angry and bitter sidekick who can barely keep up with Harry’s amazing power and talent. It’s a total waste of character that could be removed from the story without changing the plot. Neville has no impact in the climax of the story. He is present and told doing things, but then he ends up being irrelevant. Nothing was told about what happened to him afterwards which makes it feel that all the long chapters in which Harry trained him were pointless to the ultimate conclusion of the story and his own character arc, i.e. filler.
Katie was actually an interesting character because she felt like a real person and not a caricature like the three other most important characters. She caused a love triangle in the story, and I could empathize with her on some level. On one hand, I would have liked her to be successful in her love life, because she was a much more pleasant person than Fleur, but on the other hand, I would not have liked such a normal, likable girl end up with a monster like Harry. Her death was supposed to be a tough situation for Harry, but apart from one of Harry’s brief fits of rage, there were no consequences to Harry’s mental state or the plot. In the end, Katie felt like one of the many wasted characters of the story.
Harry and Fleur initially dislike each other, but then find some kind of strong personal connection because of their similarities. They both think about the other one before the romance begins, but I never understood it how they turned out to love each other. And even stranger is how Fleur comes to consider Harry the most important thing in her life, so important that she has no problems with Harry being a psychopath who murders a woman for being annoying. (She even continues teasing Harry, taking the risk of being the next annoying woman to face the ultimate penalty.) It seems like the writer wanted to give some insight to their thoughts because that’s what happens in good romance stories, but only made it even more confusing. In Chapter 64 Harry looks into the Mirror of Erised and sees himself with a family with Fleur. In Chapter 71 he is suddenly uneasy about being committed to his relationship with her. It seems that the writer wanted an unrealistically effortless beginning for such a perfect romance, but at the same time acknowledged that it needs some obstacles to be interesting to the audience. The result is convoluted and implausible.
The story would be much better if the entire romance was removed. The main problem is that romance and a total war against cartoonishly evil bad guys are quite incompatible genres of literature. Normal people are unable to invest emotionally in a romance if a mortal danger lurks everywhere and they know they are being targeted by an overpowered bad guy.
The lack of relationship dynamics also bothered me. Apart from Harry enjoying Fleur feeling jealous and protective, they are on a lovely honeymoon almost the entire time. They don’t learn new facets of each other, they never face serious moments of doubt or willingness to end the relationship. In fact, the romance would be an interesting one if Harry and Fleur had vastly differing hopes and expectations. Like the following, for example. Harry is stressed about the war and seeks comfort from Fleur. She, being the older one of the pair and having no such personal concerns, is willing to get a closer and more intimate relationship, and is disappointed when he is emotionally unable to comply. She learns more about people and lets go of her non-empathic composure. Defeating Voldemort becomes a mutual goal for them, because they know their relationship can flourish only if Harry is freed from his emotional burden. At the end of the story, they have both learned much about each other and life in general, and everything is fine. That would be a story worth telling!
This is a friendly advice for all aspiring authors: if you don’t have personal experience in romantic relationships, it’s usually not a good idea to write stories about them. Of course, I don’t know any personal details of the writer of A Cadmean Victory, but from the tone of the story I suspect he/she was around twenty years old when writing and inexperienced in romantic relationships.
Divergence type fan fiction stories usually follow the Stations of the Canon, i.e. the events of the books. I actually like it, because I find it interesting to explore the ramifications of the divergence. A Cadmean Victory, however, is a bad example of divergence, because it follows the Stations of the Canon even after it doesn’t make any sense.
At the beginning, Harry kills Barty Crouch Junior, and sometime during the next school year he kills Peter Pettigrew. Even though that should have totally derailed the canon plot, the Triwizard Tournament takes place with Harry as the fourth Champion, and he gets taken to Little Hangleton where he confronts the resurrected Voldemort and then escapes. The Ministry doesn’t believe him and Umbridge is being annoying, there is the adventure in the Department of Mysteries where Harry fights Death Eaters and Voldemort, and the Ministry learns the truth. There is the Horcrux hunt and Dumbledore dies following the events in the cave, then the Death Eaters almost take over Britain, there is the break-in to Gringotts, and the final showdown between Harry and Voldemort in Hogwarts. It’s mind-boggling how little things change even though for Harry so many things happen differently.
Harry gets taught by Salazar Slytherin’s portrait and does several rituals that make him more powerful, and he gets help from Fleur, but these things don’t change the overall plot. It’s unbelievable that someone is willing to go through the trouble of writing a 500,000 word story with own world-building and unique subplots, but then change next to nothing about the main plot. It was very disappointing and showed striking lack of creativity when compared to the more unique parts.
Many plot details were strange and annoying.
I never understood how Harry’s name ended up in the Goblet of Fire. In one of the early Fleur’s point of view chapters she witnesses Harry putting his name in the Goblet, but later Harry is surprised that the Goblet selected him. Did Fleur see someone who was Polyjuiced as Harry? It was never explained.
And then there was Peter Pettigrew hanging out at Hogwarts for some reason. I think he was giving orders to the Imperiused Ludo Bagman, but why was it necessary to do at Hogwarts? Wasn’t Bagman in London most of the time? But the most annoying thing is that even though Harry sees Pettigrew on the Marauder’s Map several times, he doesn’t do anything about it. Yes, I get it he doesn’t trust Dumbledore as much as he once did, but isn’t capturing Pettigrew quite an important thing? Why was Harry unwilling to interact even so little with Dumbledore as telling him about Pettigrew’s suspicious presence would have been? The entire Pettigrew subplot was ridiculous, like some kind of a side quest of a video game: Harry knows it is not necessary to act right now. Pettigrew will be there even if Harry wastes several opportunities to catch him.
A similar type of thing is that Voldemort repeatedly lets Harry go for no real reason. Yes, he wants to know how Harry would turn out given time, but considering Voldemort wanted to kill Harry when he was a baby it is totally out of character for Voldemort. He doesn’t take the risk of anyone equalling him. Voldemort’s stupidity also evaporates the tension from the story. When the reader knows that confronting Voldemort is not an almost guaranteed death, all those confrontations lack the necessary tension for an interesting adventure story. The story offers no surprises, the final confrontation will happen only when Harry is ready!
Harry’s stupidity about important tools annoyed me. He totally wastes the final use of the Time Turner and the Felix Felicis for unimportant things even though he knew he was going to face Voldemort eventually. Any sensible person would have saved them for the confrontation.
World building deserves recognition, but A Cadmean Victory creates several plot holes by taking Rowling’s world into the wrong direction. Specifically, the rituals.
There are lots of rituals, far too many for any plot purposes. I guess the writer wanted some kind of explanation for Harry becoming so powerful so quickly. That is better than no explanation, but when there is a new ritual every ten chapters or so, it becomes excessive. Harry should have done them all at once. Alternatively, skip the rituals altogether and come up with something entirely else. Magic opens so many possibilities; why does Harry have to beat Voldemort with superb power? Some creative application of previously known magic would be much more satisfying and spare the reader of many boring scenes with loads of inconsequential information.
Perhaps the over-emphasizing of power could be parallelised with a story of Harry Potter and Voldemort as weightlifters. Voldemort is the strongest weightlifter in the world, and Harry knows that if he is to win, he must become even stronger. Then the story tells about how Harry exercises and uses doping. Eventually he is stronger than Voldemort and triumphs. Not a very interesting story, I would say. The reader cannot feel Harry’s exercising, thus making it impossible for the reader to attach to the story. But how about a story where Harry realises that he doesn’t need to be stronger than Voldemort, he just needs to be cleverer, and triumphs by other means? (Actually, at some point of A Cadmean Victory Harry does say that he plans to defeat Voldemort through cleverness rather than power, but nothing becomes of it.)
Also, there was no sufficient explanation to why so few wizards do these rituals. Yes, the ingredients are expensive and the knowledge was rare, but if a teenager can become the third most powerful wizard in a few years through them, I would think the wizarding world would mass-produce the ingredients and use all their time to craft more such rituals. Plot-wise, a good ritual requires a sacrifice that few people are willing to make. The Horcrux is a good example. The rituals should have made Harry less human. That would not even change the story as such a personality change happens regardless.
Then there is the fact that paintings are actually sentient. If they are capable of learning new things and interacting with living people like living people, why is it not customary in the wizarding world to immortalize everyone in paintings? If paintings are just as good teachers as living people, why are they not in charge of teaching at Hogwarts? Paintings should not be some kind of good Horcruxes.
I found the direct quotes of thoughts annoying. Every now and then there is a short line in italics telling what Harry thinks. My problem is that usually people do not think in complete sentences. Thoughts are quick realisations and associations, and that is why it would be much better to let the narrator tell what kind of thoughts go through the mind of the main character. Direct quotes are okay if the character actually forms the complete sentences, for example when imagining a conversation, planning the line, or almost saying something but keeping quiet for some reason. This is just a minor detail, but when it happens over and over again for no good reason, it gets very annoying. It breaks the flow of the prose. Equally annoying is that usually the lines were so unimportant. If it is necessary to tell Harry’s opinion about a minor detail, why not spell out every single thought that forms in his mind? Or am I not believe that no thought processes take place apart from the ones written in italics?
But this next thing is a positive one. There is more social interaction with less close friends, something the Harry Potter books lack for some reason. (The most glaring example of this is in the Half-Blood Prince. At the start of the year Harry hears that the parents of the Patil twins would like to take their daughters out of Hogwarts. Then, just before Christmas, Harry says to Parvati, “How’re you? You’re staying at Hogwarts, then? I heard your parents wanted you to leave.” So, apparently, Harry never exchanged a single word of small-talk with her in more than three months before that?) Harry’s friendship with Katie is interesting partly because it should have been in the books.
This next thing is quite usual in fan fiction stories. Characters teasingly threaten each other like this: “If you get into danger, I’m gonna hex you until –!” Does that really happen between teenagers? Is that their way of expressing caring without appearing soft or sentimental? I have grown to hate it, because it’s like a trade mark of a writer who doesn’t know how real people interact.
Why was this story written? I think every story has some kind of creative spark, some moral the writer wants to tell the audience. But even after reading A Cadmean Victory, I don’t know what the moral is. It certainly is not that if Harry had been more independent, cunning, ambitious, and proactive, everything would have turned out for the better, because it didn’t! And it wasn’t that even though the so-called Dark Arts give you an advantage in a war, they are not good in the long run. In fact, the only moral I can think of about A Cadmean Victory is that it is okay to break into people’s homes and murder them for petty reasons. No, I don’t like it. Hermione is the voice of reason in this story, understanding Harry’s fall, but at the end it turns out she was being influenced by the locket Horcrux. I’m probably over thinking it, but it’s like a message to the reader: if you think Harry is evil, you’re influenced by Voldemort!
This is a divergence type of story. That means this is an alternative chain of events to canon, and we can judge if this is a better or worse outcome to the starting point. In the end, what is better than in canon: Fred, Cedric, and Snape survive. What is worse: Arthur, Katie, Hermione, and Ron die, as apparently does every Hogwarts professor, Teddy Lupin never gets born, Draco dies and loses his chance to get redeemed, Harry’s friendships with the Weasleys are ruined, and Harry and Fleur become monsters. Good for Fred, Cedric, and Snape, but overall I would say the outcome is much worse. So, apparently I read over half a million words and endured unlikable main characters just to learn that their sacrifice of their own humanity did not even make things better than the alternative. And there even was no clear or reasonable moral to the story. So, was this a story that needed or deserved to be told? If I could send a message back in time, I probably would advise my younger self not to bother reading this story.
Again, this does not mean that the story is bad. It just is not worth the trouble of reading over half a million words, because so much of it is filler and the important parts are plagued with flaws. Removing the filler parts, the inconsequential action sequences, the unnecessary lectures about magic, and most of the romance parts would make this a solid 150,000 word story without changing the plot at all. Then just a little more thought to the plot and character development would make this story a good one.
Many people consider this a very good Harry Potter fan fiction story, even among the best. I would like to read their thoughts about the things I have pointed out.
submitted by Gavin_Magnus to HPfanfiction [link] [comments]

2020.08.30 21:08 llaverna Weekly Round-Up: August 24th - August 30th

Weekly Round-Up: August 24th - August 30th
/bangtan Weekly Round-Up
Previous thread: August 17th - August 23rd
This round-up is for everything that happened in the /bangtan realm within the past week, compiled for your convenience! If you have feedback, please leave a comment or send me a PM.
The latest weekly round-up is linked on the sidebar of the subreddit. The link to the archive of past round-up posts can always be found in the wiki index.

New Releases

Date Link Thread
200825 [Audio] BTS - Dynamite (Acoustic Remix) & Dynamite (EDM Remix) Thread
200825 ‪[MV] BTS 'Dynamite' Official MV‬ [B-Side] Thread
200828 [Audio] BTS Dynamite (Tropical Remix) & Dynamite (Poolside Remix) Thread

News & Information

Date Thread
200823 BTS has won Best Foreign Song with 'ON' and Best Fans at the Swedish music award show Rockbjörnen 2020
200824 The emoji for #BTS_Dynamite hashtag has changed to a disco ball
200824 Jimin donated 100 million won to Jeonnam Future Education Foundation to aid students with outstanding abilities and talents in need
200824 BTS are nominated for 'Best Group' at the MTV Video Music Awards
200825 radio Adds for Dynamite - 171 stations!
200827 [NOTICE] Information on Upcoming Announcements for BTS MAP OF THE SOUL ON:E
200827 ARMY Bomb Ver.3 and 'Map of the Soul Special Edition' can now connect to "Dynamite" music video on Weverse
200829 BTS have taken their first win for "Dynamite" on today's MBC Show! Music Core
200829 MTV UK: BTS Win MTV's Hottest Summer Superstar 2020!
200830 BTS have taken their second win for "Dynamite" on today's SBS Inkigayo
200830 BTS on iHeart Radio Countdown (BTS shares they will perform Dynamite and Spring Day at iheart radio music festival on Sep 18/19)

Merchandise news

Date Thread
200824 Learn! KOREAN with BTS Book Package is now available to preorder on Weverse Shop
200825 The content "BTS World Tour 'Love Yourself, Speak Yourself' London" has been submitted for rating

Expired news

Date Thread
200826 BTS to join The Kidd Kraddick Morning Show on August 27 at 7:10AM CT
200828 [NOTICE] Release Information for Additional BTS Digital Single “Dynamite” Remix Versions
200827 BTS On Air with Ryan Seacrest interview on August 28th at 8:30am PT


Date Thread
200826 BTS perform "Stay Gold" and "MIC Drop" on Fuji TV's '2020 FNS Music Festival"

Official Media

Type Date Link Thread
Bomb 200827 [BANGTAN BOMB] 'Dynamite' MV Reaction Thread
Episode 200826 [EPISODE] BTS (방탄소년단) 'Dynamite' MV Shooting Sketch Thread
In the SOOP 200825 [Behind] In the SOOP BTS ver. EP.1 Excited to Begin: Behind-the-scenes Thread
In the SOOP 200827 In the SOOP BTS ver. EP.2 Free Time Thread
In the SOOP 200827 [In the SOOP BTS ver.] Official Clip - Ep.3 Thread
Photos 200825 BTS emoticON Thread
Video 200824 Sing ‘Dynamite’ with me - RM Thread
Video 200825 Sing 'Dynamite' with me - Jimin Thread
Video 200826 Sing 'Dynamite' with me - Jin Thread
Video 200827 Sing 'Dynamite' with me - V Thread
Video 200828 Sing 'Dynamite' with me - j-hope Thread
Video 200829 Sing 'Dynamite' with me - SUGA Thread
Video 200830 Sing 'Dynamite' with me - Jung Kook Thread
Other 200824 Learn! KOREAN with BTS [EP.25] I Want to See You Thread
Other 200826 [Learn! KOREAN with BTS] The Smart Way to use the Speaking Pen Thread
Other 200827 Learn! Korean with BTS Tutorial Thread
Other 200828 Love Myself: "It's okay to stop. There's no need to run without knowing why." Thread

BTS Universe Story

Date Link Thread
200827 BTS Universe Story - I remember the happy moments laying side by side in the warm grass. Will our story have a happy ending? Thread
200828 BTS Universe Story Thread

Official SNS

Date SNS Link Thread
200824 Twitter Jimin Thread
200825 Twitter j-hope Thread
200825 Weverse j-hope Thread
200826 Twitter BTS Official: Blown away by Dynamite yet? We heard it's the #1 most added song on US radio this week!! Thank you US radio! Join in on the fun! Thread
200826 Twitter BTS Japan Thread
200827 Twitter Jimin Thread
200827 Weverse Compilation
200828 Twitter Seokjin Thread
200828 Instagram BTS Official Instastory Thread
200829 Twitter BTS iHeartRadio Most Request Live Ask Anything Chat goes down next Saturday night with On Air Romeo Thread
200829 Instagram BTS Official Instagram Story Thread
200830 Weverse j-hope Thread
200830 Instagram BTS Official Instagram Story Thread
200830 Weverse Compilation

BTS Interviews

Date Link Thread
200824 The Bert Show: BTS talks Dynamite, upcoming concert, and their post-pandemic plans Thread
200824 Today: BTS 'Dynamite': Band members talk first all-English song Thread
200826 MTV: BTS Nervous For VMAs Performance Debut With “Dynamite” (Extended Interview) Thread
200826 NME: BTS: "We're eager to give joy through our music now more than ever" Thread
200827 Good Morning Britain: BTS Talk Their New Single Dynamite and a Surprise Singalong to Harry Styles Thread
200828 MTV News: BTS share their top 7 favourite music videos & talk Dynamite Thread
200828 On Air With Ryan Seacrest: BTS Share the Meaning Behind Record-Breaking Track 'Dynamite,' What's to Come & More Thread

CF & Partnerships

Date Thread
200824 Hyundai Lifestyle
200824 FILA Korea x BTS - Jin #2
200824 BTS x Baskin Robbins Interview & Pick Videos (RM & SUGA)
200822 FILA Korea x BTS - j-hope #2
200824 FILA Korea x BTS - V #2
200826 FILA Korea x BTS - RM #2
200826 Thehandsome’s ‘SYSTEM’ is releasing a 2nd collaboration with BTS ‘BTS / SYSTEM Special Edition : SHIRSTS 7’ on August 27th
200826 BTS x Hyundai Lifestyle
200827 BTS / SYSTEM Special Edition
200827 Baskin Robbins x BTS Instagram Update
200827 FILA Korea x BTS - SUGA #3
200827 [Baskin Robbins x BTS] Sketch Photos and Mobile Wallpapers for download
200828 FILA Korea x BTS - V #3
200830 BTS x Hyundai Lifestyle Instagram Story - 'IONIQ : I'm on it' Sneak Peek


Date Publisher Article Thread
200823 Official Charts BTS' new song Dynamite on course for Official UK Number 1 Thread
200824 Elite Daily The BTS Shoutout In Netflix's 'Teenage Bounty Hunters' Is A Nod To ARMYs Thread
200824 Vulture Song Review: BTS Is Way Ahead Of Us Thread
200825 Headline Planet BTS' "Dynamite" Erupts As Pop Radio's Most Added Song Thread
200826 Rolling Stone BTS’ ‘Dynamite’ Launches a Veteran Songwriter Into the Spotlight Thread
200829 StyleCaster Becky G on Her New Eyewear Collection & Why BTS’ J-Hope Is Her ‘Genuine Inspiration’ Thread
200828 Teen Vogue VMAs 2020 Keke Palmer on BTS Thread
200830 Inquirer Why BTS—today’s success story—are incredible yet real Thread

SNS Mentions

Date Link Thread
200823 Dylan Minnette Thread
200823 FC Bayern Thread
200826 Cardi B posted an Instagram story of her listening to Black Swan with her daughter
200826 chart data: BTS' "Dynamite" is expected to debut at #1 on next week's Hot 100. It would be the group's first #1 hit. Thread
200827 Rina Sawayama Thread
200827 Kildren - V 🧨 Thread
200828 Son Sungdeuk on Instagram - Bangtan Uncles Thread
200827 Paulo Coelho tweets about BTS Thread
200828 MAX: “COLOUR VISION” Album Listening Party. Hear "Blueberry eyes (feat SUGA of BTS)... and all the unreleased songs before anyone else in the world. Thread
200829 Maple Story: Name a more iconic duo. We see you #Jin @BTS_twt @bts_bighit Thread
200829 Louis Vuitton Thread
200829 MAX posts picture of blueberries, teases MV for Blueberry Eyes ft. Suga Thread

Other media

NOTE: Entries with 💜 have new content directly involving BTS
Type 💜 Date Link Thread
Cover 200825 “Filter” Dance cover by JustJerk Dance Academy Thread
Cover 200829 Dynamite (Pop Punk/Rock Cover) by John of Minority 905 Thread
Cover 200830 BTS - Dynamite Metal cover Thread
Video 💜 200824 VMAs: A Message From BTS Thread
Video 💜 200825 GQ Japan: A special video message from BTS has been released! Thread
Video 💜 200827 Trafalgar Releasing: Check out this special message straight from the boys of BTS about "Break The Silence: The Movie"! Thread
Other 200826 League of Legends eSports Teams include BTS's 'Answer: Love Myself' on their Road to Worlds 2020 Spotify Playlist Thread
Other 200827 Try Guys: Eugene Is Back & BTS Is Thriving - The TryPod Ep. 74 Thread
Other 200825 Logic talks about meeting Yoongi on twitch stream (starts at 2:53:47) Thread


Type Date Thread
Charts/Sales 200824 Billboard: 'Dynamite' Is Blowing Up: BTS Makes Its Best Career Debut on Pop Songs Radio Airplay Chart
Charts/Sales 200825 'Sweet Night' by V has now reached 117 #1's on iTunes Worldwide
Charts/Sales 200825 'Dynamite' has passed 100k units sold in the US
Charts/Sales 200825 Official Charts: BTS' Dynamite debuts at Number 1 on the Official Trending Chart
Charts/Sales 200825 'Filter' achieves 100 #1's on iTunes, making BTS the first artist to have 6 songs achieve 100 #1's
Charts/Sales 200826 Dynamite reached #1 on Melon 24Hits chart
Charts/Sales 200827 'Dynamite' has achieved a Perfect All-Kill
Charts/Sales 200827 "Dynamite" has reached a new peak of #21 (+3) on US Pop Radio with a new peak audience of 20.325 million! (+2.161M)
Charts/Sales 200828 "Dynamite" by BTS has spent 7 consecutive days at #1 on the WW & US iTunes chart so far, a first for a Korean group!
Charts/Sales 200828 "Dynamite" debuts at #8 on Germany's Official Singles Chart, becoming BTS 's first ever Top 10 hit in the country and the highest debut for a Korean act!
Charts/Sales 200828 BTS 'Dynamite' has debuted at #3 on the UK Official Singles Chart, their highest yet
Charts/Sales 200829 Debuting at #2, Dynamite becomes BTS’ highest ARIA Singles Chart peak (Australia)
Charts/Sales 200829 ‘mono’ by RM has reached #1 on iTunes in 118 countries.
Likes 200830 BTS is now the first and only artist in history to have 2 MVs with over 16 million likes on YouTube. (BWL & Dynamite)
Streams 200828 "Dynamite" by @BTS_twt earns the highest first-week debut by a group on Spotify's Weekly Chart (Aug 21-Aug 28) in the platform's history, with 39.9M streams
Views 200826 'Dynamite' has surpassed 200 Million views on Youtube
Views 200826 BTS Becomes the First Asian act in YouTube history to surpass 15 BILLION total views across Official Videos
Views 200828 YouTube Music: We're still dancing 🕺 💜 Congratulations to BTS for shattering all of the records 🎉 101.1 MILLION views in 24 hours on Dynamite!
Other 200830 Headline Planet: BTS Returns To #1 On Global YouTube Artists Chart As “Dynamite” Rules Music Videos, Songs Listings


Date Link Thread
200828 TinyTAN: This is how we bake up our cuteness! Thread


Date Link Thread
200826 Just another busy day at BT21 base! 😙 Wonder what #UNISTARS are doing? Thread
200827 Staying patient until that day comes... 💭 Thread
200828 Let's glow up together! We're gonna shine through the city with love and uwu. 💖 Thread


Date Thread
200824 [Throwback] Two years ago today, BTS released "Love Yourself 結 'Answer'" and music video for title track "IDOL"
200824 [Unconfirmed & denied] K-media update on BTS Universe drama "Blue Sky"
200827 The original version of this scene is a Korean comedian AKA elevator guy from Gangnamstyle
200828 Sculpture for J-hope in Gwangju from Army
200828 OIAA Flash Fundraiser for JK's Birthday


Rolling /bangtan Awards 2020 nomination form

Top Discussion Posts

  1. [+140] Lyrically, what song are you most personally connected to?
  2. [+87] How was BTS sparked your activism?
  3. [+84] Did you have a song where you've been indifferent at first until you saw the live performance?
  4. [+84] Is there an updated book list of what the members have been reading the past year or so?
  5. [+76] What is a time that you cried happy tears for BTS?

Weekly threads


Here are past week's top 5 fanart posts from our sister subreddit, /heungtan!
Submitter Thread
kuhleesee My dynamite fanart!
KimKaura B-side has resurrected me
lnconnue My first Procreate painting - Pastel Pink Jin 🧨! I hardly draw anymore and am really out of practice, so I’m happy I managed to finish this ☺️💜💕
bearseatbeets1212 Daechwita Chopsticks I Made 🥰
Dibri_art Here's a BTS fanart I did I hope yall like it 💜
submitted by llaverna to bangtan [link] [comments]

2020.08.30 09:53 sardarbhagat Fifty people who have affected Hindus and Hinduism in a negative way – Francois Gautier

In a recently posted article on François Gautier’s website, he lists the names of 50 people who can be described as enemies of Hindus and Hinduism. He says that he created the list, which is incomplete, without malice aforethought.
Here is the list, 50 Biggest Enemies of Hindus (Dead or Alive), including the reasons he gives to justify his choice of enemies — Editor
Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, who along with a few hundred men, stood his ground against the most powerful emperor of his times, has practically no place in Indian history books and is often described as a petty chieftain or even a plunderer. So is Maharana Pratap, the only Rajput who fought against the Mughals and actually defeated Akbar in Haldighati.
Hindus tend to merge and melt wherever they live—and in the process, lose some of their identities and togetherness. And finally the most deadly and vicious intellectuals that we have reviewed above, are Hindus most of them. They are the ones that should be targeted, in a non-violent but firm manner. – Francois Gautier, 13 June 2016. The list has been edited by a staff writer at Newsgram and again by the editor of Bharata Bharati. See the original here.
submitted by sardarbhagat to IndiaConversionMafia [link] [comments]

2020.08.29 18:18 IdolA29Augl New G-ay On-line Da-ting Too Ma-ny

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2020.08.28 20:15 azoundria2 How To End The Cryptocurrency Exchange "Wild West" Without Crippling Innovation

In case you haven't noticed the consultation paper, staff notice, and report on Quadriga, regulators are now clamping down on Canadian cryptocurrency exchanges. The OSC and other regulatory bodies are still interested in industry feedback. They have not put forward any official regulation yet. Below are some ideas/insights and a proposed framework.

Many of you have limited time to read the full proposal, so here are the highlights:

Offline Multi-Signature

Effective standards to prevent both internal and external theft. Exchange operators are trained and certified, and have a legal responsibility to users.

Regular Transparent Audits

Provides visibility to Canadians that their funds are fully backed on the exchange, while protecting privacy and sensitive platform information.

Insurance Requirements

Establishment of basic insurance standards/strategy, to expand over time. Removing risk to exchange users of any hot wallet theft.

Background and Justifications

Cold Storage Custody/Management
After reviewing close to 100 cases, all thefts tend to break down into more or less the same set of problems:
• Funds stored online or in a smart contract,
• Access controlled by one person or one system,
• 51% attacks (rare),
• Funds sent to the wrong address (also rare), or
• Some combination of the above.
For the first two cases, practical solutions exist and are widely implemented on exchanges already. Offline multi-signature solutions are already industry standard. No cases studied found an external theft or exit scam involving an offline multi-signature wallet implementation. Security can be further improved through minimum numbers of signatories, background checks, providing autonomy and legal protections to each signatory, establishing best practices, and a training/certification program.
The last two transaction risks occur more rarely, and have never resulted in a loss affecting the actual users of the exchange. In all cases to date where operators made the mistake, they've been fully covered by the exchange platforms.
• 51% attacks generally only occur on blockchains with less security. The most prominent cases have been Bitcoin Gold and Ethereum Classic. The simple solution is to enforce deposit limits and block delays such that a 51% attack is not cost-effective.
• The risk of transactions to incorrect addresses can be eliminated by a simple test transaction policy on large transactions. By sending a small amount of funds prior to any large withdrawals/transfers as a standard practice, the accuracy of the wallet address can be validated.
The proposal covers all loss cases and goes beyond, while avoiding significant additional costs, risks, and limitations which may be associated with other frameworks like SOC II.

On The Subject of Third Party Custodians
Many Canadian platforms are currently experimenting with third party custody. From the standpoint of the exchange operator, they can liberate themselves from some responsibility of custody, passing that off to someone else. For regulators, it puts crypto in similar categorization to oil, gold, and other commodities, with some common standards. Platform users would likely feel greater confidence if the custodian was a brand they recognized. If the custodian was knowledgeable and had a decent team that employed multi-sig, they could keep assets safe from internal theft. With the right protections in place, this could be a great solution for many exchanges, particularly those that lack the relevant experience or human resources for their own custody systems.
However, this system is vulnerable to anyone able to impersonate the exchange operators. You may have a situation where different employees who don't know each other that well are interacting between different companies (both the custodian and all their customers which presumably isn't just one exchange). A case study of what can go wrong in this type of environment might be Bitpay, where the CEO was tricked out of 5000 bitcoins over 3 separate payments by a series of emails sent legitimately from a breached computer of another company CEO. It's also still vulnerable to the platform being compromised, as in the really large $70M Bitfinex hack, where the third party Bitgo held one key in a multi-sig wallet. The hacker simply authorized the withdrawal using the same credentials as Bitfinex (requesting Bitgo to sign multiple withdrawal transactions). This succeeded even with the use of multi-sig and two heavily security-focused companies, due to the lack of human oversight (basically, hot wallet). Of course, you can learn from these cases and improve the security, but so can hackers improve their deception and at the end of the day, both of these would have been stopped by the much simpler solution of a qualified team who knew each other and employed multi-sig with properly protected keys. It's pretty hard to beat a human being who knows the business and the typical customer behaviour (or even knows their customers personally) at spotting fraud, and the proposed multi-sig means any hacker has to get through the scrutiny of 3 (or more) separate people, all of whom would have proper training including historical case studies.
There are strong arguments both for and against using use of third party custodians. The proposal sets mandatory minimum custody standards would apply regardless if the cold wallet signatories are exchange operators, independent custodians, or a mix of both.

On The Subject Of Insurance
ShakePay has taken the first steps into this new realm (congratulations). There is no question that crypto users could be better protected by the right insurance policies, and it certainly feels better to transact with insured platforms. The steps required to obtain insurance generally place attention in valuable security areas, and in this case included a review from CipherTrace. One of the key solutions in traditional finance comes from insurance from entities such as the CDIC.
However, historically, there wasn't found any actual insurance payout to any cryptocurrency exchange, and there are notable cases where insurance has not paid. With Bitpay, for example, the insurance agent refused because the issue happened to the third party CEO's computer instead of anything to do with Bitpay itself. With the Youbit exchange in South Korea, their insurance claim was denied, and the exchange ultimately ended up instead going bankrupt with all user's funds lost. To quote Matt Johnson in the original Lloyd's article: “You can create an insurance policy that protects no one – you know there are so many caveats to the policy that it’s not super protective.”
ShakePay's insurance was only reported to cover their cold storage, and “physical theft of the media where the private keys are held”. Physical theft has never, in the history of cryptocurrency exchange cases reviewed, been reported as the cause of loss. From the limited information of the article, ShakePay made it clear their funds are in the hands of a single US custodian, and at least part of their security strategy is to "decline[] to confirm the custodian’s name on the record". While this prevents scrutiny of the custodian, it's pretty silly to speculate that a reasonably competent hacking group couldn't determine who the custodian is. A far more common infiltration strategy historically would be social engineering, which has succeeded repeatedly. A hacker could trick their way into ShakePay's systems and request a fraudulent withdrawal, impersonate ShakePay and request the custodian to move funds, or socially engineer their way into the custodian to initiate the withdrawal of multiple accounts (a payout much larger than ShakePay) exploiting the standard procedures (for example, fraudulently initiating or override the wallet addresses of a real transfer). In each case, nothing was physically stolen and the loss is therefore not covered by insurance.
In order for any insurance to be effective, clear policies have to be established about what needs to be covered. Anything short of that gives Canadians false confidence that they are protected when they aren't in any meaningful way. At this time, the third party insurance market does not appear to provide adequate options or coverage, and effort is necessary to standardize custody standards, which is a likely first step in ultimately setting up an insurance framework.
A better solution compared to third party insurance providers might be for Canadian exchange operators to create their own collective insurance fund, or a specific federal organization similar to the CDIC. Such an organization would have a greater interest or obligation in paying out actual cases, and that would be it's purpose rather than maximizing it's own profit. This would be similar to the SAFU which Binance has launched, except it would cover multiple exchanges. There is little question whether the SAFU would pay out given a breach of Binance, and a similar argument could be made for a insurance fund managed by a collective of exchange operators or a government organization. While a third party insurance provider has the strong market incentive to provide the absolute minimum coverage and no market incentive to payout, an entity managed by exchange operators would have incentive to protect the reputation of exchange operators/the industry, and the government should have the interest of protecting Canadians.

On The Subject of Fractional Reserve
There is a long history of fractional reserve failures, from the first banks in ancient times, through the great depression (where hundreds of fractional reserve banks failed), right through to the 2008 banking collapse referenced in the first bitcoin block. The fractional reserve system allows banks to multiply the money supply far beyond the actual cash (or other assets) in existence, backed only by a system of debt obligations of others. Safely supporting a fractional reserve system is a topic of far greater complexity than can be addressed by a simple policy, and when it comes to cryptocurrency, there is presently no entity reasonably able to bail anyone out in the event of failure. Therefore, this framework is addressed around entities that aim to maintain 100% backing of funds.
There may be some firms that desire but have failed to maintain 100% backing. In this case, there are multiple solutions, including outside investment, merging with other exchanges, or enforcing a gradual restoration plan. All of these solutions are typically far better than shutting down the exchange, and there are multiple cases where they've been used successfully in the past.

Proof of Reserves/Transparency/Accountability
Canadians need to have visibility into the backing on an ongoing basis.
The best solution for crypto-assets is a Proof of Reserve. Such ideas go back all the way to 2013, before even Mt. Gox. However, no Canadian exchange has yet implemented such a system, and only a few international exchanges (CoinFloor in the UK being an example) have. Many firms like Kraken, BitBuy, and now ShakePay use the Proof of Reserve term to refer to lesser proofs which do not actually cryptographically prove the full backing of all user assets on the blockchain. In order for a Proof of Reserve to be effective, it must actually be a complete proof, and it needs to be understood by the public that is expected to use it. Many firms have expressed reservations about the level of transparency required in a complete Proof of Reserve (for example Kraken here). While a complete Proof of Reserves should be encouraged, and there are some solutions in the works (ie TxQuick), this is unlikely to be suitable universally for all exchange operators and users.
Given the limitations, and that firms also manage fiat assets, a more traditional audit process makes more sense. Some Canadian exchanges (CoinSquare, CoinBerry) have already subjected themselves to annual audits. However, these results are not presently shared publicly, and there is no guarantee over the process including all user assets or the integrity and independence of the auditor. The auditor has been typically not known, and in some cases, the identity of the auditor is protected by a NDA. Only in one case (BitBuy) was an actual report generated and publicly shared. There has been no attempt made to validate that user accounts provided during these audits have been complete or accurate. A fraudulent fractional exchange, or one which had suffered a breach they were unwilling to publicly accept (see CoinBene), could easily maintain a second set of books for auditors or simply exclude key accounts to pass an individual audit.
The proposed solution would see a reporting standard which includes at a minimum - percentage of backing for each asset relative to account balances and the nature of how those assets are stored, with ownership proven by the auditor. The auditor would also publicly provide a "hash list", which they independently generate from the accounts provided by the exchange. Every exchange user can then check their information against this public "hash list". A hash is a one-way form of encryption, which fully protects the private information, yet allows anyone who knows that information already to validate that it was included. Less experienced users can take advantage of public tools to calculate the hash from their information (provided by the exchange), and thus have certainty that the auditor received their full balance information. Easy instructions can be provided.
Auditors should be impartial, their identities and process public, and they should be rotated so that the same auditor is never used twice in a row. Balancing the cost of auditing against the needs for regular updates, a 6 month cycle likely makes the most sense.

Hot Wallet Management
The best solution for hot wallets is not to use them. CoinBerry reportedly uses multi-sig on all withdrawals, and Bitmex is an international example known for their structure devoid of hot wallets.
However, many platforms and customers desire fast withdrawal processes, and human validation has a cost of time and delay in this process.
A model of self-insurance or separate funds for hot wallets may be used in these cases. Under this model, a platform still has 100% of their client balance in cold storage and holds additional funds in hot wallets for quick withdrawal. Thus, the risk of those hot wallets is 100% on exchange operators and not affecting the exchange users. Since most platforms typically only have 1%-5% in hot wallets at any given time, it shouldn't be unreasonable to build/maintain these additional reserves over time using exchange fees or additional investment. Larger withdrawals would still be handled at regular intervals from the cold storage.
Hot wallet risks have historically posed a large risk and there is no established standard to guarantee secure hot wallets. When the government of South Korea dispatched security inspections to multiple exchanges, the results were still that 3 of them got hacked after the inspections. If standards develop such that an organization in the market is willing to insure the hot wallets, this could provide an acceptable alternative. Another option may be for multiple exchange operators to pool funds aside for a hot wallet insurance fund. Comprehensive coverage standards must be established and maintained for all hot wallet balances to make sure Canadians are adequately protected.

Current Draft Proposal

(1) Proper multi-signature cold wallet storage.
(a) Each private key is the personal and legal responsibility of one person - the “signatory”. Signatories have special rights and responsibilities to protect user assets. Signatories are trained and certified through a course covering (1) past hacking and fraud cases, (2) proper and secure key generation, and (3) proper safekeeping of private keys. All private keys must be generated and stored 100% offline by the signatory. If even one private keys is ever breached or suspected to be breached, the wallet must be regenerated and all funds relocated to a new wallet.
(b) All signatories must be separate background-checked individuals free of past criminal conviction. Canadians should have a right to know who holds their funds. All signing of transactions must take place with all signatories on Canadian soil or on the soil of a country with a solid legal system which agrees to uphold and support these rules (from an established white-list of countries which expands over time).
(c) 3-5 independent signatures are required for any withdrawal. There must be 1-3 spare signatories, and a maximum of 7 total signatories. The following are all valid combinations: 3of4, 3of5, 3of6, 4of5, 4of6, 4of7, 5of6, or 5of7.
(d) A security audit should be conducted to validate the cold wallet is set up correctly and provide any additional pertinent information. The primary purpose is to ensure that all signatories are acting independently and using best practices for private key storage. A report summarizing all steps taken and who did the audit will be made public. Canadians must be able to validate the right measures are in place to protect their funds.
(e) There is a simple approval process if signatories wish to visit any country outside Canada, with a potential whitelist of exempt countries. At most 2 signatories can be outside of aligned jurisdiction at any given time. All exchanges would be required to keep a compliant cold wallet for Canadian funds and have a Canadian office if they wish to serve Canadian customers.
(2) Regular and transparent solvency audits.
(a) An audit must be conducted at founding, after 3 months of operation, and at least once every 6 months to compare customer balances against all stored cryptocurrency and fiat balances. The auditor must be known, independent, and never the same twice in a row.
(b) An audit report will be published featuring the steps conducted in a readable format. This should be made available to all Canadians on the exchange website and on a government website. The report must include what percentage of each customer asset is backed on the exchange, and how those funds are stored.
(c) The auditor will independently produce a hash of each customer's identifying information and balance as they perform the audit. This will be made publicly available on the exchange and government website, along with simplified instructions that each customer can use to verify that their balance was included in the audit process.
(d) The audit needs to include a proof of ownership for any cryptocurrency wallets included. A satoshi test (spending a small amount) or partially signed transaction both qualify.
(e) Any platform without 100% reserves should be assessed on a regular basis by a government or industry watchdog. This entity should work to prevent any further drop, support any private investor to come in, or facilitate a merger so that 100% backing can be obtained as soon as possible.
(3) Protections for hot wallets and transactions.
(a) A standardized list of approved coins and procedures will be established to constitute valid cold storage wallets. Where a multi-sig process is not natively available, efforts will be undertaken to establish a suitable and stable smart contract standard. This list will be expanded and improved over time. Coins and procedures not on the list are considered hot wallets.
(b) Hot wallets can be backed by additional funds in cold storage or an acceptable third-party insurance provider with a comprehensive coverage policy.
(c) Exchanges are required to cover the full balance of all user funds as denominated in the same currency, or double the balance as denominated in bitcoin or CAD using an established trading rate. If the balance is ever insufficient due to market movements, the firm must rectify this within 24 hours by moving assets to cold storage or increasing insurance coverage.
(d) Any large transactions (above a set threshold) from cold storage to any new wallet addresses (not previously transacted with) must be tested with a smaller transaction first. Deposits of cryptocurrency must be limited to prevent economic 51% attacks. Any issues are to be covered by the exchange.
(e) Exchange platforms must provide suitable authentication for users, including making available approved forms of two-factor authentication. SMS-based authentication is not to be supported. Withdrawals must be blocked for 48 hours in the event of any account password change. Disputes on the negligence of exchanges should be governed by case law.

Steps Forward

Continued review of existing OSC feedback is still underway. More feedback and opinions on the framework and ideas as presented here are extremely valuable. The above is a draft and not finalized.
The process of further developing and bringing a suitable framework to protect Canadians will require the support of exchange operators, legal experts, and many others in the community. The costs of not doing such are tremendous. A large and convoluted framework, one based on flawed ideas or implementation, or one which fails to properly safeguard Canadians is not just extremely expensive and risky for all Canadians, severely limiting to the credibility and reputation of the industry, but an existential risk to many exchanges.
The responsibility falls to all of us to provide our insight and make our opinions heard on this critical matter. Please take the time to give your thoughts.
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2020.08.28 15:00 DarthEquus The History of Medicalized Circumcision Part 2: 1885-1899

The History of Medicalized Circumcision Part 2: 1885-1899
In this brief period, circumcision rapidly transformed from an experimental procedure of antiquity into a nearly unquestioned cure-all for every ailment imaginable. Doctors also began to scrutinize the possible applications towards women as well.
In reference to the promotion of genital cutting by men like Remondino, Hutchinson, Johnson, Freeman, Lehman, and others, Jonathan Cohen (2011) wrote: "one of the most fascinating stories of the institutionalization of medical male circumcision is the discursive use of the Jews as racial proof of the benefits of circumcision, with a complete ignorance of sociological factors."

1885: ~10% of the American male population is circumcised

1887 Lewis Sayre, after promoting preventative circumcision for almost 20 years, finally limited his circumcision advocacy to therapeutic circumcision only rather than "indiscriminate" circumcision. His idea of therapeutic circumcision did still mean overdiagnosing infantile phimosis, but this was still an enormous improvement from his previous influential recommendations of totally non-therapeutic, preventative circumcision. [On the deleterious results of a narrow prepuce and preputial adhesions Trans. Ninth Internat. Med. Congress]
1887 M. A. Rust addressed circumcision in writing about the history of cultural mutilations:
"There is not a single tribe of savages on the face of the globe who do not disfigure parts of their bodies, and hardly a part of the body susceptible of disfigurement which has not been disfigured. This is not done in accordance with individual fancy, but in strict conformity to inexorable tribal rule.
Ornamentation lies at the root of many, but not of all of these mutilations. A great number of them entail such an amount of suffering and torture that, in order to establish them, to enforce submission and co-operation, potencies awful and mysterious must have been at work, striking fear into every individual heart. Once established, the obligation became as automatic as the daily walks of an ant.
Circumcision is the most ancient and widely spread mutilation in existence, and it is practiced in all the five parts of the world, though to the greatest extent in Asia, Africa, and among the savages of Australia. Of civilized nations we note about one hundred and thirty millions of Muhamedans, and about ten millions of Jews, and the Christians of Abyssinia. It was practiced in Mexico at the time of the conquest of Cortez, and, according to the accounts of modern travelers is still in use among Indian tribes in Nicaragua and on the Amazon.
No wonder that the origin of a mutilation so barbarous, so repulsive, and, at the same time, so widely spread and so tenaciously adhered to should have so repeatedly formed an object of inquiry and speculation. Muhamed found circumcision already an ancient usage among many of the Arabian tribes; he took it up for reasons akin to those for which Paul dropped it. It had prevailed, since time immemorial, among the Abyssinians, when they embraced Christianity. Travelers who make inquiries among savage tribes generally obtain for answer that it is a tribal custom which has always been; they cannot conceive why other reasons should be demanded."
[Mutilations. Gaillard's Medical Journal v. 45.]
1887 Angel Money writes:
"There can be no doubt of [masturbation's] injurous effect, and of the proneness to practice it on the part of children with defective brains. Circumcision should always be practiced. It may be necessary to make the genitals so sore by blistering fluids that pain results from attempts to rub the parts."
[Treatment of Disease In Children, Philidelphia: P. Blakiston, 1887. p.421.]
1888 John Harvey Kellogg (yes, the cereal guy) promoted irrational fear of masturbation and "spermatorrhoea." For girls, he warned that masturbation caused breast atrophy, uterine cancer, and insanity. He recommended circumcision and other surgical punishments for both boys and girls to punish and discourage masturbation. He also wrote positively of cauterizing the clitoris with acid to alleviate masturbation in girls. It's notable and often forgotten that he was promoting cutting the genitals of older children rather than infants. He wrote positively of the Jewish practice but also noted its tendency to scar the meatus (meatal stenosis). He advanced the propaganda that ancient genital surgery had always been performed for health. He also advocated the use of male chastity belts. The next entry after circumcision is castration as if to imply it was also the next genital surgical option should circumcision fail to produce the intended result. Like Kellogg, Hutchinson had also suggested castration as the next and more extreme option to cure masturbation.
"In younger children, with whom moral considerations will have no particular weight, other devices may be used. Bandaging the parts has been practiced with success. Tying the hands is also successful in some cases; but this will not always succeed, for they will often contrive to continue the habit in other ways, as by working the limbs, or lying upon the abdomen. Covering the organs with a cage has been practiced with entire success. A remedy which is almost always successful in small boys is circumcision, especially when there is any degree of phimosis. The operation should be performed by a surgeon without administering an anæsthetic, as the brief pain attending the operation will have a salutary effect upon the mind, especially if it be connected with the idea of punishment, as it may well be in some cases. The soreness which continues for several weeks interrupts the practice, and if it had not previously become too firmly fixed, it may be forgotten and not resumed."
"In females, the author has found the application of pure carbolic acid to the clitoris an excellent means of allaying the abnormal excitement, and preventing the recurrence of the practice in those whose will-power has become so weakened that the patient is unable to exercise entire self-control."
[Results of Secret Vice and Treatment for Self-abuse and Its Effects in Plain Facts for Old and Young, Burlington, Iowa, F. Segner & Co. — a longer excerpt from this work]

Chastity belts for boys and girls
1889 Peter Remondino, a San Diego physician and promoter of snake oil read his "A Plea for Circumcision; or, the Dangers that Arise from the Prepuce" at the meeting of the Southern California Medical Society.
"The subject of the paper was itself suggested by a long and personal observation of the changes made in man by circumcision. From the individual observation of cases, it was but natural to wish to enlarge the scope of our observation and comparison; this naturally led to a study of the physical characteristics of the only race that could practically be used for the purpose. This race is the Jewish race. On carefully studying into the subject, I plainly saw that much of their longevity could consistently be ascribed to their more practical humanitarianism, in caring for their poor, their sick, as well as in their generous provision for their unfortunate aged people. The social fabric of the Jewish family is also more calculated to promote long life, as, strangely as it may seem, family veneration and family love and attachment are far more strong and practical among this people than among Christians, this sentiment not being even as strong in the Christian races as it is in the Chinese or Japanese. … Actual observations show them [the Jews] to be exempt from many diseases which affect other races; so that it is not only that they recover more promptly, but that they are not, as a class, subjected to the loss of time by illness, or to the consequent sufferings due to illness or disease, in anything like or like ratio with other people. There is also a less tendency to criminality, debauchery, and intemperance in the race; this, again, can in a measure be ascribed to their family influence, which even in our day has not lost that patriarchal influence which tinges the home or family life in the Old Testament. Crimes against the person or property committed by Jews are rare. They likewise do not figure in either police courts or penitentiary records; they are not inmates of our poor-houses, but, what is also singular, they are never accused of many silly crimes, such as indecent exposures, assaults on young girls…."

1890: ~15% of the American male population is circumcised

1890 Herbert Snow, a London surgeon published a 57-page book, one of the first intactivist volumes of the modern era. He called for "the abolition of an antiquated practice involving the infliction of very considerable suffering upon helpless infants; and sanctioned, on very questionable grounds, by men of eminent authority.
"No sane man who possessed the advantages of a sound and entire prepuce would willingly sacrifice it without just and sufficient cause being shown."
[The Barbarity of Circumcision as a Remedy for Congenital Abnormality. London: J. & A. Churchill.]

The Orificial Surgical Society

1890 The Orificial Surgical Society "was founded by Edwin Hartley Pratt, a surgeon at the Cook County Hospital in Chicago. The organization was largely concerned with orifices below the waist, and provided training for surgery of the prepuce, clitoris, and rectum, the latter organ being given special emphasis. It was obsessed with the idea that most diseases were caused by tightness of the preputial or anal sphincters. … By the 1920s many of the member physicians had their licenses revoked." —Wallerstein Circumcision: An American Health Fallacy 1980:38 — See also: Rutkow IM. Edwin Hartley Pratt and orificial surgery: unorthodox surgical practice in nineteenth century United States. Surgery. 1993. and Moments in surgical history: orificial surgery. Arch Surg. 2001.
1890 William D. Gentry declared that phimosis in men and uterine disorders in women caused insanity, blindness, deafness, dumbness, epilepsy, paralysis and criminal behavior adding that "the genitals of either male or female are the centres of the nervous system". [Nervous derangements produced by sexual irregularities in boys. Trans American Institute of Homeopathy. v.43.]
1890 Jonathan Hutchinson wrote that the foreskin encouraged masturbation and "adds to the difficulties of sexual continence" and can even cause insanity. For evidence of the latter point, he pointed to the case of an anonymous surgeon committed to an insane asylum for compulsive masturbation. Adult circumcision was useful, he wrote, for breaking men of the habit of masturbation, but early childhood circumcision was ideal in his opinion. In closing, he wrote: "Measures more radical than circumcision would, if public opinion permitted their adoption, be a true kindness to many patients of both sexes" referring to the difficulty of getting the general public to accept the idea of doctor's electing to sterilize patients without their consent. [On circumcision as preventive of masturbation. Arch Surgery.]
1890 A review of Pogorelsky's Ritual circumcision of the Hebrews stated:
"As regards the predisposition to the acquirement of neuroses, the foreskin plays the same part in the male as the ovaries in the female." Sayre traced reflex paralysis and contracture of the lower extremeties; Erichsen, spasmodic diseases, to congenital phimosis.
Further, hypochondriacal persons with inclination to commit suicide, individuals who suffer from uro-paraplegia, nervous tremor, chorea minor, neuralgia, hysteria, hallucinations and paresis have been cured by circumcision.
Although circumcised persons contract gonorrhea more easily than uncircumcised, yet syphilis less often; the sexual desire is less in the former, hence crimes against morality are rarer."
Review of Pogorelsky M. Ritual circumcision of the Hebrews in The Medical Times. v.17. 1890.]
1891 Peter C. Remondino published a book of circumcision activism in which he vilified the foreskin at length as a malign influence and "moral outlaw." Repeating the false circumcision-prevents-masturbation meme, Remondino wrote, "the practice of [masturbation] can be asserted as being very rare among the children of circumcised races." According to Remondino excising foreskin would not only discourage boys from masturbating, but immunize them against tuberculosis, cancer, syphilis, polio, idiocy, forgetfulness, impotence, unwanted erections, wet dreams and just about any medical problem you cared to mention.
"The prepuce seems to exercise a malign influence in the most distant and apparently unconnected manner: where, like some of the evil genii or sprites in the Arabian tales, it can reach from afar the object of its malignity, striking him down unawares in the most unaccountable manner; making him a victim to all manner of ills, sufferings, and tribulations; unfitting him for marriage or the cares of business; making him miserable and an object of continual scolding and punishment in childhood, through its worriments and nocturnal enuresis; later on, beginning to affect him with all kinds of physical distortions and ailments, nocturnal pollutions, and other conditions calculated to weaken him physically, mentally, and morally; to land him, perchance, in jail or even in a lunatic asylum. Man's whole life is subject to the capricious dispensations and whims of this Job's-comforts-dispensing enemy of man."
[Remondino PC. History of Circumcision… moral and physical reasons for its performance… and of the different operations practiced upon the prepuce Philadelphia: F. A. Davis. 1891.]
1891 Jefferson C. Crossland writes that:
"In consequence of circumcision the epithelial covering of the glans becomes dry, hard, less liable to excoriation and inflammation, and less pervious to venereal viruses. The sensibility of the glans is diminished, but not sufficiently to interfere with the copulative function of the organ or to constitute an objection...It is well authenticated that the a fruitful cause of the habit of masturbation in children... I conclude that the foreskin is detrimental to health, and that circumcision is a wise measure of hygiene."
[The Hygiene of Circumcision. NYMJ. 1891;53:484-485.]
1892 Circumcision was not the only proposed cure for masturbation. Some physicians such as David Yellowlee detailed another version of punitive and supposedly therapeutic preputial infibulation:
"Some direct operative interference, which shall prevent masturbation and show him that he can live without it, may be of much service. The best form of such interference is so to fix the foreskin that erection becomes painful and erotic impulses very unwelcome. To accomplish this, the prepuce is drawn well forward, the left forefinger inserted within it down to the root of the glans, and a nickel‐plated safety‐pin, introduced from the outside through skin and mucous membrane, is passed horizontally for half an inch or so past the tip of the left finger, and then brought out through mucous membrane and skin so as to fasten outside. Another pin is similarly fixed on the opposite side of the prepuce. With the foreskin thus looped up any attempt at erection causes a painful dragging on the pins, and masturbation is effectually prevented. In about a week some ulceration of the mucous membrane will allow greater movement and with less pain, when the pins can, if needful, be introduced into a fresh place."
It should be pointed out that Yellowlee's advocacy of infibulation was not limited to the treatment of inmates in lunatic asylums, and was, in fact, directed at parents, whose duty, he declared, was to prevent their children from adopting ‘the secret vice’.
[In Tuke DH ed. A Dictionary of Psychological Medicine. Vol. 2. London: J&A Churchill, 1892: 784 – 6]
1893 Mark J. Lehman claimed Jewish boys were healthier. He noted it was "an open question" whether tuberculosis, cancer, syphilis, and "scrofula" were not "one and the same disease," and whether "such a simple measure as general circumcision" would not be the answer to all "insidious and filthy diseases." He called for immediate universal circumcision of all male infants. [A plea for circumcision. Medical Review.]
1893 An unnamed author for The Journal de Medicine de Paris provided a look into popular thought of the day on female circumcision (meaning only non-excisive incision here) writing:
"A certain Dr. Morris, of Boston, the land of Yankee notions, has discovered an ingenious method of making the most waspish and shrewish women models of gentleness and modesty. He proves by statistics that eighty out of one hundred American women of Aryan origin in New England have the gland of the clitoris adherent, in part or totality, to the prepuce. The result of these adherences is an imperfect development of the gland, and to this is due a weakness of sexual desire and various nervous perturbations. These troubles are dependent, in the first place, on an irritation of the terminal branches of the erectile nerves of the gland brought on by the adherences, and in the second place to irritation caused by the retention of smegma. This double irritation leads to masturbation, to the perversion of sexual desire, and finally to reflex neuroses.The preputial adherences of the clitoris are, according to Dr. Morris, the only and direct cause of the reflex neuroses from which thousands of New England women suffer, and he adds: "We can now understand how the most irritable young girl, the one who is most disagreeable and hysterical, may be made gentle, charming, and become endowed with a thousand feminine graces, by the simple rupture of the bands that bind down the clitoris [clitoral incision]." The therapeutic deduction is perfect, and we do not doubt that all husbands in New England who have shrewish wives will now employ Dr. Morris to break up these adhesions of the clitoris, and bring peace to many a suffering Boston household."
[Adherent Clitoris in all Shrewish Women. Cincinnati Lancet-Clinic. Translated from J Med Paris.]
1894 Peter C. Remondino claimed circumcision would curb the "predisposition" of black men to rape white women. Remondino's proposal was supported by several medical journals including the Maryland Medical Journal and the Boston Medical and Surgical Journal (now the New England Journal of Medicine).
"From our observations and experience in such cases, we feel fully warranted in suggesting the wholesale circumcision of the Negro race as an efficient remedy in preventing the predisposition to discriminate raping so inherent in that race. We have seen this act as a valuable preventive measure in cases where an inordinate and unreasoning as well as morbid carnal desire threatened physical shipwreck; if in such cases the morbid appetite has been removed or at least brought within manageable and natural bounds, we cannot see why it should not—at least in a certain beneficial degree—also affect the moral stamina of a race proverbial for the leathery consistency, inordinate redundancy, generous sebaceousness and general mental suggestiveness and hypnotizing influence of an unnecessary and rape, murder and lynching breeding prepuce."
[Negro rapes and their social problems. National Popular Review vol. 4 p. 3.]
1894 Darby (2005) wrote: “eleven boys confined in a Kansas mental institute were castrated for persistent masturbation.” When the press was critical of this, "the Kansas Medical Journal defended the institute's action” writing “this abuse weakened the already imbecile mind and destroyed the body” (Darby, 2005).
1895 Charles E. Fisher, a homeopathic doctor, wrote:
"In all cases in which male children are suffering nerve tension, confirmed derangement of the digestive organs, restlessness, irritability, and other disturbances of the nervous system, even to chorea, convulsions, and paralysis, or where through nerve waste the nutritive facilities of the general system are below par and structural diseases are occurring circumcision should be considered as among the lines of treatment to be pursued."
A like rule obtains with reference to female children. In general practice the sexual organs in both sexes should be carefully examined by the general practitioner in early infancy, and at various times throughout child-life, with reference to the correction of deformity or unnatural conditions that may be present. ...the clitoris is often firmly bound down by an adherent hood; numerous reflexes arising therefrom. It has become quite the rule the examine the sexual organs of male children at or soon after birth, but, on the other hand, it is equally the rule to neglect to examine girl babies. As children of the weaker sex grow their more delicate nervous systems begin to show the effect of genital irritations, and many a case of chorea, confirmed headache, nervous jactitations, paralytic weakness, unusual irritability, melancholia or other abnormal state of the nervous system long remains uncured because of the failure to make careful examination of the condition of the genitalia and relieve irritations and adhesions at this site."
[A Hand-Book On The Diseases of Children And Their Homeopathic Treatment. Chicago: Medical Century Co. 1895]
1895 Edgar J. Spratling began his article explaining that part of the great evil of masturbation was that it might lead to being sodomized in an insane asylum. He advocated tight circumcisions to prevent the skin from being able to move, a natural feature of the human penis which facilitates masturbation. If not tight circumcision, cutting the nerves to the penis could also be used to blunt the individual's sexuality, and he advocated that surgery as well, but it was a more delicate surgery compared to circumcision.
"In women the road to its cure is an endless and monotonous journey, for nothing short of ovariotomy will be found to deserve even the term palliative; clitoridectomy, anatomically and physiologically, could be but a failure, blistering [i.e., cauterization is] only [a] cruelty. Among men the case is not so hopeless, for there anatomy is partly in the operator's favor [meaning male erogenous sensitivity is easier to destroy]. Of the treatments we might speak of blistering the glans penis, but only to condemn it as an uncalled for cruelty; the possible beneficial effect is so transient, while the untoward effect is often so lasting upon the patient mentally in the way of a feeling of resentment, that it is doubtful if one could ever justify such a proceeding. Complete section of the dorsal nerves of the penis (as I have previously advocated) is a rational procedure, but rather too radical for constant routine practice. The cases require the greatest care in the selection for this operation, and even then with all due care one will generally have to encounter the most strenuous objections and later the bitterest reproach and condemnation from the patients and from their relatives—though the object sought may have been obtained [at the expense of causing penile numbness and impotence]. [In cases of masturbation] circumcision is undoubtedly the physicians' closest friend and ally.
"To obtain the best results one must cut away enough skin and mucous membrane to rather put it on the stretch when erections come later. There must be no play in the skin after the wound has thoroughly healed, but it must fit tightly over the penis, for should there be any play the patient will be found to readily resume his practice not begrudging the time and extra energy required to produce the orgasm. It is true, however, that the longer it takes to have an orgasm, the less frequently it will be attempted, consequently the greater the benefit gained.
"The younger the patient operated upon the more pronounced the benefit, though occasionally we find patients who were circumcised before puberty that require a resection of the skin, as it has grown loose and pliant after that epoch."
[Masturbation in the Adult. Med Rec.]
1895 T. Ritchie Stone strongly advocated circumcision for all male infants in his pro-surgery review. [Circumcision. Maryland Med J.]
1896 An editorial in a scientific journal lists reasons for circumcision as everything from bed wetting to elephantitis.
"Local indications for circumcision: Hygienic, phimosis, paraphimosis, redundancy (where the prepuce more than covers the glans), adhesions, papillomata, ecaema (acute and chronic), oedema, chancre, chancroid, cicatrices, inflammatory thickening, elephantitis, naevus, epithelioma, gangrene, tuberculosis, prepupital calculi, hip-joint disease, hernia. Systematic indication: Onanism [masturbation], seminal emissions, enuresis [bed wetting], dysuria, retention, general nervousness, impotence, convulsions, hystero-epilepsy."
[Medical Record, Circumscisus, Medical Record, vol. 49 (1896): p.430.]
1897 S. G. A. Brown of Pennsylvania repeated the same Semitophillic sentiment as Remondino:
"The Jews, who perform this operation on the eighth day after birth, are, from actual observations, known to be exempt from many diseases which afflict other races. Their children are hardy, and grow up to manhood and womanhood strangers to disease, perfect in body, sound in mind, and with a morality above condemnation. It is rare that they figure in silly crimes, police or divorce courts. That an appendage like the prepuce which under various conditions, as phimosis, short frenum or preputial adhesions, is the leading factor in the production of enuresis, dysuria, impotence, calculi, cancer, syphilis, phthisis or various other reflex neuroses, can be considered as a natural physiological appendage, is absurd in the extreme. In order to render the rising generation healthy, mentally morally and physically, we must pay attention to this redundant tissue, and advise its early removal. Fully three-fourths of all male babies have abnormal prepuces."
[A Plea for Circumcision. J Orificial Surgery quoted in The Medical World]
1898 T. Scott McFarland of Missouri reported on the circumcision of a two-year-old girl with precocious puberty and anomalous symptoms of irritation. In closing he added that he had "circumcised as many girls as boys, and always with happy results." Note that circumcision meant prepucectomy for either sex until the 1980s. The more severe form of genital cutting more familiar to people today as female circumcision/FGM meaning clitoridectomy was then called "[clitoral] excision" or the oddly overgeneralized, "operative procedure". [Circumcision of girls. J Orificial Surgery.]
1898 Edwin H. Pratt wrote:
"The condition of the foreskin of boys has received more or less attention, at least since the days of Moses, who is reported to have inaugurated the practice of circumcision of the male portion of the human race. But the girls have been neglected. Without presuming to pose as their Moses, I do feel an irresistible impulse to cry out against the shameful neglect of the clitoris and its hood, because of the vast amount of sickness and suffering, which could be saved the gentler sex, if this important subject received proper attention and appreciation at the hands of the medical profession.
All up-to-date doctors realize the importance of the proper condition of the foreskin in the male and of securing it during infancy. The foreskin must be completely loosened, if it is too long amputated and if it is too tight slit open, in order to avoid the dangers of infantile convulsions, of hip-joint disease, of kidney disease, of paralysis, of eczema universalis, of stammering, of dyspepsia, of pulmonary tuberculosis, of constipation, of locomotor ataxia, of rheumatism, of idiocy and insanity, and of lust and all its consequences. But the poor girls, who have an organ called the clitoris, anatomically corresponding to the penis of the male, with a hood corresponding to the foreskin of the male and just as sorely in need of [surgical] attention, and just as prolific of mischief when neglected as the corresponding parts of the male, have been permitted to suffer on in silence. The same list of diseases which have their start in nerve waste caused by a faulty foreskin in the male is duplicated by the female sex from identically the same cause, in addition to other troubles peculiar to the female organization from which, of course, the male are exempt, and yet it goes on almost entirely unrecognized. Chorea, so frequent in young girls, chlorosis, which comes a little later on, and hysteria, which is also a common affliction, in addition to the same diseases from which boys whose foreskin have been neglected are liable to suffer, have their organ almost invariably in faulty conditions of the hood of the clitoris. It is such a simple matter to secure a normal condition of the hood and its clitoris, and its neglect is fraught with so much and such serious mischief to the gentler sex, that the sin of omission which is being constantly and everywhere committed is painful to contemplate. Doctors are not easily educated out of their beaten tracks.
So let both sexes have a start in life and be entirely freed from the sexual self consciousness which inevitably comes from impinged nerve fibres about the clitoris and its hood as well as at the glans penis and its foreskin. ... A vigorous sympathetic nervous system means health and long life. What surgical interest have we in this fact? It can be told in just one sentence. The weakness and the power of the sympathetic nerve lies at the orifices of the body. Surgery must keep these orifices properly smoothed and dilated."
[Circumcision of Girls. J Orificial Surgery.]
Women suffering from \"hysteria\"
1898 N. Bergman wrote of "punishing" a chronic masturbator with circumcision:
"Clarence B. was addicted to the secret vise practiced among boys. I performed an orificial operation, consisting of circumcision... He needed the rightful punishment of cutting pains after his illicit pleasures."
[Report of a Few Cases of Circumcision. Journal of Orificial Surgery, vol. 7 (1898): pp.249-251.]
1898 Emmet L. Holt advocated for circumcision under the following reasoning:
"Circumcision should be done if phimosis exists, and even where it is not, the moral effect of the operation is sometimes of very great benefit."
[The Diseases Of Infancy And Childhood. New York: D. Appleton. 1897:696-698.]
1899 Denslow Lewis, a Chicago gynecologist, presented evidence for the benefits of female circumcision (prepucectomy) at a meeting of the AMA in 1899. In “a large percentage” of women who failed to find marital passion “there is a preputial adhesion, and a judicious circumcision, together with consistent advice, will often be successful.” He treated 38 women with circumcision reporting “reasonably satisfactory results in each instance.” [The Gynecologic consideration of the sexual act]

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submitted by Meda26Augl to u/Meda26Augl [link] [comments]

2020.08.25 11:34 oollyy Current wait times for endocrinologists + your advice

Hello all! ✨
I'm still waiting to be seen by a private endo to get a prescription.
I was initially registered with GenderGP (GGP), and was about to reach prescription stage, but London Transgender Clinic (LTC) told me I could be seen within 3 weeks when I got in touch with them—I felt a local option would be better than the virtual.
After having read mixed reviews on this sub about GGP, and some GP's reluctance to form shared-care agreements with them, I felt it would be best to wait a few weeks...
...of course, this turned out to be a poor decision. That 3 week wait turned into 4 months. Every month I would email LTC, wait two weeks for a reply, to be told it'll be "early July" then "early August", and now "we cannot estimate a time". I remain on their waiting list for bookings.
I called up some other endocrinologists:
Dr Coxon - end of April, 2021 (good grief)
Dr Seal - 11+ months wait (also crikey)
Is there any other endocrinologist in the south/London available, or should I just go back to GGP and figure out a bridging prescription at a later date with LTC, now I'm in the waitlist?
Tl;dr: I've run out of patience and should I go back to GGP for now?
submitted by oollyy to transgenderUK [link] [comments]

2020.08.25 05:14 Orpherischt Monolith

This document is an attempt at an executive summary of my activity here - in essence, an attempt to answer the question:
'what is this and what are you doing here?'
I have written multiple essays and posts that attempt to introduce the topics at hand from various perspectives and directions - this is the latest foray.
It is 4am local time where I am at the moment, so I don't intend to complete this piece now. It, as with others like the Spellbinder tutorial (still not complete) will grow over some days as my attention allows. The initial component will be relatively short and to the point.
The focus on this forum began and remains the study of language and meaning, and the potential of 'hidden' semantics lurking beneath the lexicon of English (primarily) and those languages that contributed to it's development. This hypothesized hidden meaning or meanings being encoded via gematria (ie. alphabetic numerology), in tandem with other facets of language such as etymology, metaphor, allegory, innuendo, and word-plays such as vowel-shifting, and consonantal roots and their drift.
The title of this piece, Monolith, hints at my overarching primary theory: that at it's core, Language carries a singular root of 'truth' - that there is a hidden message, or protocol, or understanding, lurking within the lexicon, to be found by those willing to delve for it.
Call it hubris if you will, but I believe that what is dubbed 'the Holy Grail' and/or the 'Philosopher's stone', is that message, and it is not to be found within this or that Cathedral catacomb, or Temple shrine, or forgotten tomb, but is continually being passed around - unwitting - from speaker to listener, and from writer to reader, all the time, every day.
I suspect that while indeed the words and structure of any language carries an outer meaning, understood by all those familiar with it, and which allows them to achieve their everyday tasks, and communicate their practical intentions and desires - that the language is also a carrier signal, upon which this 'grail' or 'alchemical stone' is transmitted.
I see, in the canonical catchphrase, 'read between the lines', or the ostensibly rhetorical question 'what is in a name?', clues to this possibility.
I was prompted to write this article because of this headline:
A Tiny Space Rock Holds Clues About the Evolution of Life
... which caused me, upon reading it, to smile to myself, because it chimes nicely with the notions I have about this research and my hypotheses thereof.
If you've been reading along here for a while, you know I've been working with the Arthurian myth as a touchstone (and I don't use the word 'touchstone' lightly). A key component of the Arthurian tales is the notion of the True King pulling the Sword from the Stone, and I've documented many times that (in alphabetic gematria):
...and that...
The Greek word for alphanumeric encipherment is 'isopsephy', which has at it's etymological root the notion of the 'pebble', the counting stone.
Meanwhile, the like Hebrew tradition is called 'gematria', which has been interpreted multiple ways (which I've dealt with in many other writings), but contains, naively, the word 'gem' (ie. crystal / stone / rock ).
A rock is a crystal matrix... and the 'matrix code' of The Matrix films refers to a world built in code.
So - what is a Monolith?
Most people, hearing that term, will likely picture the great black slab from the film 2001: A Space Odyssey. Many are familiar with the notion that the appearance of this monolith, in terms of the film, acted as an evolutionary primer - that it's appearance to the apes of long ago began the movement towards increasing intelligence and beginnings of tool-wielding, and thus technology itself. It may be viewed as an analogy of the Promethean Fire given to man.
The first appearance of the Monolith began the mental journey of the Ape towards the 'unnatural' - removing him from a purely animal state and leading to the flowering of the abilities of examination and 'new application' of the environment and it's contents.
The second appearance of the monolith, in 'modern times' continues this evolution, and takes technology-wielding man to the next level, ultimately leading to the enigmatic 'starchild'.
One might argue that the first appearance, that to the Apes, required nothing more than simple fact of the monolith itself appearing to the observing creatures. For the first time, they saw a 'crafted thing', square, perfect, and 'not of this world' (ie. something unexpected and unlikely and completely out of their experience). Arguably, no other impetus was necessary - no sound, strange mind-control frequency, or such like, was needed to begin the first phase. The simple appearance of something made, and not grown or fundamental (such as the ground upon which they walked) was enough to provoke 'using' and 'making'.
The second appearance of the monolith, to modern technological man, featured a deafening high pitched sound that touched the hearts and minds of those present (or perhaps one alone, and specifically, to the quick).
This additional impetus was necessary because man, at the technological level, was already familiar with cubic forms and 'crafted things'.
Reviewing the headline linked above, and asking a question of the lexicon via perhaps some of the most important (relatively) well-known ciphers:
A Tiny Space Rock Holds Clues About the Evolution of Life
Q: what kind of rock?
"A Space Rock" = 303 jewish-latin-agrippa
This is a match, in what I deem is perhaps the major cipher we might use to access this 'code' (at least within English), for:
...and which happen to match:
Ideas are transferred from mind to mind via words and symbols. Some ideas are more viral than others, but they spread like a virus all the same.
See this post from a while back called 'The Language Virus', based on a song from the 80's called 'Language is a Virus'.
It also matches:
... which is a figure of speech. When I say that the lake is smooth as glass, I have created a simile. I have described something by relating it to something else.
The simile is closely related to the metaphor and the allegory - the metaphor being slightly more obtuse or 'poetic', we might say, compared to the simile, but which nonetheless relates one thing to another for descriptive purposes.
Numerologically-speaking, the number 303 is an avatar of 33.
... which is the most naive possible cipher we might construct.
Every word (ie. spell) in the lexicon of a language is a name - a title given to some thing, or some action or some relationship. All names encode meaning.
The human spine, the core of the skeletal scaffolding of a person, has 33 vertebrae.
The study of meaning is the study of...
ie. another code-33, which includes a trailing circle.
The circle is used, in the 'modern' sphere to represent the letter O, or the zero. The word zero, if you look it up, has close connections with the word 'cipher'. I personally take the appearance of a zero as representing a sigil of the circle. It implies the encipherment of 'that which goes in circles' - like disorganized (or perhaps very organized) conversation or argument.
So, what is the definition of the word 'monolith'?
Borrowed from French monolithe, from Latin monolithus (“consisting of a single stone”), from Ancient Greek μονόλιθος (monólithos), from μόνος (mónos, “single, alone”) + λίθος (líthos, “stone”); synchronically, mono- +‎ -lith.
A single stone.
I argue, a philosopher's stone. A stone containing a sword, named Excalibur (ie. X-calibrate)
"Sword" is an anagram (ie. contains the same letters, swizzled) of "words", and as mentioned elsewhere, when speaking mythologically, the finest swords undoubtedly come with magic runes running down the blade, and sometimes a gem or two is embedded in the hilt or pommel.
The word 'lith' (ie. lit, stone) glitters within the words 'literature' and 'light'. A prism is a crystal that refracts light into a spectrum of colours and tones.
The word 'tones' is an anagram of 'stone' - and also of 'notes' (and this art of anagrams, I deem, is a major component, amongst others, of the spell-play required to decode the hypothesized hidden message).
Mono implies One... One Stone. One Message. One hidden signal. The singularity.
Thus, while not being the only avenue of research here, perhaps the most important to me is that of attempting to decode a single notion, concept, idea or protocol underlying all language.
You might have heard of the following terms:
These are various names for 'cryptolects' or 'secret languages', hidden means of communication or of conveying ideas.
Some people might consider subsets of that list above to be separate things - and indeed, they may very well refer to different techniques or understandings of certain practitioners - but I argue they should all be grouped together as ultimately constituting the shards of a single crystal.
The Dark Crystal, to be particular - an occult gem. (*)
You might be familiar with the ideas spoken of in the Bible, regarding the Tower of Babylon ( or Babel ), the fall of which is synonymous with the 'confusion of tongues' when God splintered the languages of mankind in order that they not achieve feats beyond their station.
This theme was taken up in the 2016 film Arrival (also a major touchstone in my own studies) in which 12 alien spaceships appear over different countries of the world (in 'modern' times), and gift humanity with 12 separate pieces of a singular geometric language, written in the form of Ouroboros-like circles (reminiscent, it must be said with the Corona of the sun, the Halo after which the Coronavirus is named). It is then up to the nations of earth to overcome their differences and work together to put the puzzle together. It turns out that learning the language of the aliens modifies the human brain such that it begins to perceive time differently, and the main character, the lead linguist of the story, gains the ability to view the future and the past simultaneously. (*)
You've probably heard the phrase, "speaking in circles".
The idea of the intentionally splintered language, to me, is a clue that we have to look beyond just English alone as the substrate of the hypothesized message - and this naturally implies examining the etymological roots of all languages.
It is a theory of mine that many 'sci-fi' movies set in the future or near-future, are allegories of things that happened already long ago - for example, the film Avatar, I believe is a retelling of the Garden of Eden story, and of the 'fallen angels' and of the 'sullying of mankind' (the main character is named Sully, after all). The giant trees represent the Cedars of Lebanon, and a key component in that story is the ability of the natives to commune via organic hivemind.
Similarly, I suspect that the film Arrival is telling us that our own languages are already thus-encoded - that the 'arrival', has already happened, and that there is a message, or a treasure to be found therein.
Anyway - these avenues perhaps read as overly-fanciful notions to be chasing, and it is not my thesis, or intention, or hope to gain time-viewing abilities or create a hive-mind (though I would not necessarily be against such possibilities, nor do I discount them entirely) - but nonetheless - I suspect that something is there to be found - and I believe that it is within language that it is most likely to be found.
Here is the cover of a book, of which I own a copy. It's title is:
The Alphabet: A Key to the History of Mankind
I take that title very seriously, in ways that most people will not.
I have come across statements by other esoteric investigators, to which I generally agree, that the root of all occultism, all alchemy, all witchery and other forms of mystical arts, is to do with, A) the 'nature of the world', and B) the 'nature of man' (ie. biology and the mind).
One particular lens through which I've done much examination of the alphabet codes is that of the Cycle of Life - the notion of a procreation code: an 'instruction set for Adams and Eves', as it were - and this has borne much fruit (ha!).
Many people are familiar with the "matrix code" of the Matrix films, though they are unaware that the original Latin word 'matrix' means pregnant female. If you rewatch the film with that knowledge - all sorts of symbolism makes much more sense.
In key alphabetic ciphers:
...and having a baby involves dealing - more so than usual - with ...
What is it that fertilizes the grazing grounds of the cattle, and enables the growth of the next generation?
That said, naughty innuendo I suspect to be a major key, enabling access to the central biological aspects of the coded message.
... while pluralizing...
These two numbers, read as years AD, will be a familiar to many. The Great Fire of London occurred in 1666, while the founding of the United States of America, which I argue is simply Amor-ica (ie. the Land(ing) of Love), happened in 1776.
1776 was also the year the historically-acknowledge Bavarian Illuminati was founded by Adam Weishaupt.
We note that:
The cycle of life involves death, obviously, and that is another aspect which I suspect the codes have lots to say about, but being mostly averse to the morbid, I've not strayed too far down that road. Other investigators of alphabetic codes spend a lot of time examining the possible ritual deaths of celebrities and politicians with regards to planned alphabetic assassination (or perhaps the faking of death to assume new identities). Much of this material is interesting and intriguing, but hardly, I think, the core message of the Monolith.
Monolith @ One Writing
So - this document will expand - like a pregnant woman, laden with meaning - but I hope that so far it provides the beginnings of a means to interpret my usual, much more confusing and number-laden writings.
Thanks for reading.
PS. I intentionally waited to 3:14 am UTC to post this piece, since it represents pi, symbolic of the mathematics of the circle, which is perhaps one of the major gateway notions to understanding what is going on with language.
It is perhaps an enigma machine, each word consisting of a set of cogs that can be rotated. Shift a vowel here, drift a consonant there, and you have a new word - but perhaps, I'd argue, one entirely related to the original - one leaf on the tree of language is related to the others nearby - and ultimately all those leaves sit upon branches which coalesce down to a single trunk and a deep tap root.
  • "Space Rock" = 711 trigonal 1331 squares
  • ... .. .. ... .. .. ( "The Writings" = 1331 trigonal )
When I see the word 'space', my mind goes often to 'speculation'...
The number 711, as I've written elsewhere is - due to the oddities of the Gregorian calendar - synonymous with 911, since these days, September is the 9th month, but it's name (and history) tells us that it was once the 7th month. ie. September is the 7-ember: the fire of 7. Moreover one might see the duality of fire and shadow, since we might read September as 7-umber. In the same fashion we can read the word 'number' itself as "n-umber", or "in-umber" (ie. in shadow). The numbers are hidden in the shade of the letters.
The calendar also provides what we might read as clues (and certainly provides 'ritual leeway') in that the date written 9/11 in the US is written 11/9 in most other places, and...
  • "The Mirror" = 119 in the reverse alphabetic cipher.
What do you get if you read 119 backwards?
  • "Church" = 911 squares
  • ... "Society" = 911 trigonal
  • "Countdown to the Garden of Eden" = 911 primes ( "Coronavirus Conspiracy" = 911 primes )
You might have heard the Bible quote:
On this rock I will build my church.
The word 'rock' is built upon the consonantal root RK (think: rook @ chess castle), which if you reverse it, gives you KR (ie. Kore or Core).
ie. the root of things.
  • "The Root" = "Tradition" = "Accurate" = "Count" = 393 jewish-latin-agrippa ( = "Regular" )
  • ... ( "Accountancy" = "Survive" = 393 primes )
  • ... .. .. ( "The Symbol" = 393 primes )
  • "The Starchild" = 393 primes
Of the space rock:
A Tiny Space Rock Holds Clues About the Evolution of Life
Using the definite article (ie. 'the'):
  • "The Tiny Space Rock" = 617 primes
  • ... ( "The Official Narrative" = 617 primes )
  • ... .. ( "Textbook" = 617 jewish-latin-agrippa )
  • ... .. .. ( "Recommendation" = 617 english-extended )
Back in 2012, a team of Japanese and Belgian researchers in Antarctica found a golf ball-sized space rock resting in the snow. Now, NASA astronauts have had a chance to study a piece of that meteorite, Asuka 12236, and they say it may hold new clues about the development of life.
The number 12236 contains centrally, the number 223.
[...] meteorite, Asuka 12236, and they say it may hold new clues about the development of life.
  • "Development of Life" = 555 primes
  • ... ( "The Great Symbol" = 555 primes )
  • ... .. ( "The Turn of Time" = 555 primes )
...and not forgetting:
  • "Entertainment" = 555 jewish-latin-agrippa
Surely you are aware of how all the Hollywood movies use phone numbers beginning with 555?
... ( see: )
If we simplify the spell, 'the development of life' closer to it's core components, we have:
  • "Life Development" = 919 english-extended
  • ... ( "Great Pattern" = 919 english-extended )
... which is an inversion, in the same cipher, of ...
  • "The Secret" = "Pattern" = 616 english-extended
  • .... ( "Perfect Number" = 616 jewish-latin-agrippa )
  • ... .. .. ( "Number" = "The Law" = 616 trigonal )
  • ... .. .. .. ( "Garden of Eden" = 616 trigonal )
  • ... .. .. .. ... ( "The Key Principles" = 616 primes )
The number 616 might be the original Biblical 'Number of the Beast', known to most as the familiar number 666 - since the oldest known papyrus snippet of the original text contains the former number. (*)
[...] meteorite, Asuka 12236, and they say it may hold new clues about the development of life.
Note that the word 'development' contains the particle 'Eve'.
In terms of the name of the space rock - without augmentation by 'A' (as used earlier in this document), we get:
  • "Asuka" = 302 jewish-latin-agrippa
  • "Space Rock" = 302 jewish-latin-agrippa
The number 32 is that of..
  • "Life" = "Eve" = 32 basic alphabetic ( Life @ File )
So... good evening to you, and a welcome sonrise.
Extra notes:
Rotating the enigma machine - quoting from my Spellbinder tutorial:
You may have heard of the Great Vowel Shift:
This 'event' represents a major historical change in the use of vowels within the English Language, but I prefer to view it as a clue, indicative of an ongoing tradition of vowel shifting as a component of the 'Green Language' (arguably another name for the Language of the Birds, an esoteric tradition of understanding and using language to hide double-meaning).
Hence, one takes a word or phrase, and removes the vowels, experimenting with replacing them with other vowels, and seeing what new words appear:
  • Bird @ BRD @ Brooding @ Bearded @ Bard @ Bride @ Breed @ Bread
Then one can perform consonantal drift (of which perhaps continental drift is a metaphor):
  • Bird @ BRD @ [ D is a voiced T ] @ BRT @ Bright @ Bart @ Breitbart
One important such example:
  • Church @ ChRCh @ [ Ch hardens to K ] @ KRK @ Kerk @ Crack @ CRK @ GRG @ Gorge @ Greg-orian
Or another example combining vowel and consonant rotation:
  • Snake @ SNK @ Sneak @ Snack @ Sink @ [ K is an unvoiced G ] @ [ silencing of G ] @ Sing @ Singe
Links and Reference:
One cannot be ... told.. what the Matrix is. You have to see it for yourself
Here is a recent attempt at a document that may aid people in beginning the journey of examining the ideas of 'spell-casting'.
Here is my oldest and original attempt at an introduction to the topic.
Here is a short essay on interpreting 'numeric loadings' found within words and phrases, and here is another slightly longer one.
Here is my second major attempt at an introduction.
Here is yet another (when meaning is circular, and when we talk in circles, there is no obvious starting point)
Here is another attempt at discussing the 'reading of the code'.
Here is an essay about the possible 'intentions' behind the code, presuming they exist.
Here is a collation of various theories and thoughts about how the alphabetic codes might have been constructed, or the thoughts that might have been on the minds of the original hypothetical architects (perhaps a bit complicated as a starting point)
Here is one of a number of poems I wrote wherein each line has at least two 'loaded' numbers' encoding into it - to prove that everyday human beings are capable of such feats.
Here is an index to all my pages dedicated to specific numbers.
Here is the contents page of my wiki.
Here is a disclaimer to the arts of spell-casting and interpretation.
Space Rock @ Special Rock @ ONE Special Rock...
  • "1 Special Rock" = 343 primes
  • "A=1 Special Rock" = 393 english-extended 333 jewish-latin-agrippa 345 primes
The three numbers, 333, 343 and 393 ( along with 474 and 747) are, to me, some of the most important keys (outside of the obvious ones like 123, or 1234, 666, 777, or 911 etc).
Monolith @ MNLTh @ "Moonlight" = 314 jewish-latin-agrippa 345 primes
  • "The Moonlights" = "The Moon's Light" = 777 english-extended
The golden ratio, accurate to three decimal places, is 1.618...
  • "The Moonchild" = 1,618 squares
2001: A Space Odyssey, black monolith
2001: A Space Odyssey :: Meaning of the Monolith Revealed
submitted by Orpherischt to GeometersOfHistory [link] [comments]

2020.08.24 19:14 tramtramtram Mid Year Bingo Review Round up!

So this is my review roundup of the first time I’ve attempted Bingo now at the halfway point (more or less). To be more precise this is a mini-review of every single fantasy book I’ve read during the first half of the Bingo year. Everything below was listened on Audible. They are listed in Chronological order by finish date.
A final note, these reviews are terrible. They don’t tell you much of anything about the plots of the novels. Instead you are going to hear thoughts on tone, characterization, and world building, but it's more judgment and less description.
City of Blades - Robert Jackson Bennett (Book 2 of Divine Cities)
BINGO: Not picked for Bingo, but qualifies for Novel with Chapter Epigraphs (Hard Mode)
Rating: 4 out of 5
Summary: Fantasy Noir, set in an age of steam world dominated by an Indian themed stand-in for the British Empire. A retired female general is sent to find a missing secret agent.
Review: So first, I greatly enjoyed this series. I started it right after finishing the Licanius Trilogy, which I found…. A bit meh. And this was a refreshing change of pace. I tore through City of Stairs, and immediately plunged into this one. I personally loved Mulogush in Book 1, and so although surprised by the change in focus, I was happy enough with this book's protagonist. This whole series has extremely good characterization, and this book was no exception. A weakness in the first and third book in this series is generally boring villains. In book 1 you will recall that the human ‘villain’ is largely offscreen the entire book, with his minions harassing our heroes, while he himself shows up only briefly. In this book, the two human ‘villains’ are much better fleshed out, even if both are a bit one dimensional. I also enjoyed the lovecraft-ian aspects of this story. Without getting into spoilers, there are some great dark god appears on cliff over sea scenes, and a couple of our characters questioning their own sanity was fun in that grand old lovecraft tradition.
On the negative side, some of the plot twists here are pretty obvious, and I don’t really think it's that subtle who is going to end up the bad guys. So the ‘mystery’ itself isn’t that clever and is worse than book 1 in that respect. Having said that, I’d much rather have a mystery in a book that can be guessed, rather than the modern impulse to just be surprising for its own sake.
The Return of the King - J. R. R. Tolkien (Book 3 of The Lord of the Rings)
BINGO: Not picked for Bingo and a re-read. As far as I can see doesn’t fit a single Bingo square– does this book feature ghosts? Or since Sauron is ‘the necromancer’ could I use it for that square?
Rating: 5 out of 5
Summary: High Fantasy set in a middle earth knock off. A classic tale of short fat people destroying jewelry that doesn’t belong to them, and in the process murdering a dead guy.
Review: What to say? You should obviously read all these books. I think it's funny to tag spoilers for LotR. I wonder if there is a single person on this sub who hasn't at least seen the movies. (If you are such a person dear reader, stop reading this and go watch the movies). But rules are rules! Also, Vader is Luke's dad, and the Titanic hits an iceberg and sinks.
So first: the Rob Inglis narration is amazing -- if you like these books and have not heard his reading of them you absolutely absolutely owe it to yourself to seek them out, if for no other reason than the singing. Not all of that is excellent, but none of it is terrible and when it's good, it's amazing. Also it's kind of fun to listen to an audio book this old, there are like… noises in the background sometimes, like this book wasn’t recorded or produced in a real studio, but really I think that added to the charm.
I hadn’t read LotRs since the late 90s, although I’ve obviously watched the movies a number of times. Re-reading them I was struck by how strange they are. The sections with Aragon, from when he joins the hobbits in Bree, until the ring is destroyed, are the ‘normal’ epic fantasy blueprint. The rest of the story is just totally weird in an awesome way. Sam and Frodo killing and cooking a rabbit (I know that's technically two towers), 100 pages of diversions into history and lore that truly go nowhere. The structure of Return of the King especially is strange… like… the ring is destroyed maybe 2/3s of the way into the book!Which, okay, nowadays when a fantasy epic spans a minimum of 5,000 pages, maybe having 100 pages of post climax material is ‘normal’ but like almost 1/5th of the Lord of the Rings is wind down. This is all the more shocking when you realize that another, at least 1/3rd of the Fellowship of the ring is just wind up. Regardless, I truly loved it, so many authors borrow so much from LoTR but I feel like what writers imitate is the Aragon arc. I wish someone would copy the 30% of the series that can be summarized as: hobbits go on a long walk and sing some songs. Sometimes the walk is nice, sometimes it's not nice. Regardless, they do their best.
p.s. I think I never read the appendix when I was a kid. Man there is some good stuff in there.
The Legacy - R. A. Salvatore (Book 1 of the Legacy of the Drow)
BINGO: Not picked for Bingo. I guess this satisfies the Magical Pet Square.
Rating 1 out of 5
Summary: Sword and Sorcery set in the DnD forgotten realms. Five friends who constantly talk about how much they value friendship suddenly forget to talk to each other and get attacked by some Drow or whatever.
Review: So, I never read any of these as a kid. I started reading them in 2018, and I’ve gotten this far. This is the 7th? book in the series. I read the first trilogy in 2018, the second in 2019, and was planning on knocking out the third trilogy in 2020. But honestly, I’m not sure I’ll go further.
I enjoyed the first three books pretty well, and the Icewind Dale was so classic sword and sorcery it was hard not to like. But this book… MAN, everyone is just so earnest it's impossible, even like the drow mercenary guy, and the assassin guy. I sort of liked Drizt’s brother in the first three books so I was sad to see him done so dirty in this one. I also love Regius, who is also done dirty in this book. Also also, I don’t approve of what happened to the barbarian guy. He’s like a quasi complex character in as far as these books go… at least he has real flaws.
Anyway, the writing, the plotting and everything, is pretty basic, the book tries… maybe... to take on a darker tone than its predecessors, and I didn’t really like that, or think it worked. I was hoping for fun and light popcorn reading, and it was, but it was not nearly as fun and popcorny as for example, the Dresden files, or Murderbot. I’m a big DnD fan, so I wished I liked these better, and really wished I read them 20 years ago. I dunno, maybe I’ll slog on. Sometimes when I’m listening to an audiobook and I’m wavering about whether to finish it or not, I’ll increase the replay speed. (I did that a bunch during Licanius—turns out you can understand someone saying ‘inclined their head’ at a high rate of speed) and I found myself doing that with Legacy, I think at one point I caught myself listening at x3. Coupling that with the fact that these books are pretty short, it's just a REALLY bad use of an audible credit.
The Thousand Names - Django Wexler (Book 1 of the Shadow Campaign)
BINGO: Not picked for Bingo, but is a book with a number in the Title.
Rating 3 out of 5
Summary: Military FlintLock Fantasy. A bunch of army guys (and a few secret army gals) wage a campaign against long odds to reinstall a puppet king, but that's a cover for trying to steal indigenous religious relics.
Review: I loved the first 3/4s of this book, and liked the last 25% much less. I’m in a real mood for low key magic these days, and this book does a great job of that for most of it. Both PoV’s are good. Side note, I always think its… an interesting choice… when a male writer has one female PoV character and decides to make her a lesbian, it makes me wonder: Is this how you decided to make it easier to write a lady character? Make her like other ladies so you can relate to that?
Regardless! I like military fantasy with training arcs and I liked that none of our protagonists are anything special when it comes to actually killing people, even though both are obviously exceptional in other ways. I’ve seen this criticism before, but for a book that is so much about colonialism, and is literally about trying to steal another cultures artifacts, that stuff is not dealt with by the book at all. I mean I don't think a book HAS to address that kind of thing, but it is surprising that it is essentially ignored. Nevertheless, I liked the show don’t tell world building here, with some totally reasonable fill me in exposition much later in the story.
Now once the magic leaps to the forefront I liked this less. There was a ‘superhero’ feel to this magic, which I have developed a real personal distaste for in my fantasy reading (A criticism I have of Licanius as well). Also one of our POVs: Marcus is annoyingly ‘nice guy’-ish, but at least he gets what's coming to him in that department.
City of Miracles - Robert Jackson Bennett (Book 3 of Divine Cities)
BINGO: Not picked for Bingo… Can’t reuse an author, might count as Ghost square if you STRETCH IT, otherwise I think this book is BINGO USELESS!
Rating 3 out of 5
Summary: Fantasy Noir, set in an age of steam world dominated by an Indian themed stand-in for the British Empire. A retired spy comes out of hiding to solve a crime.
Review: I think this is the weakest entry in the series. The villain gets a lot of screen time and he’s just not interesting. His main lieutenant is not interesting either. I kinda liked the assassin guy… but he’s not in it THAT much. I loved Sigurid, everyone does, I think, so having him as the central character was gonna be good I thought, but maybe too much of a good thing, as he’s not the most dynamic of guys. Without descending into spoilers, again I thought the ‘twists’ here were predictable, but not in a way that was necessarily bad.
Having said that, I liked all three of these books, seeing the world change and develop over the time period of the series was great. The ending (last chapter) was a really good conclusion for Sigruid’s arc, and I think this book featured some great action sequences. Sigrud fighting on the cable car was truly memorable. I didn’t like the ‘arc’ of the gods story all that much. Honestly, I kinda wish the last book had !>featured another god or two from the series pantheon as the antagonist, then we could nicely summarize this series: Sigurd and friends kill saints and gods with guns and bombs. Three Parts Dead - Max Gladstone (Book 1 Craft Sequence)
BINGO: This book marks the beginning of where I decided to do Bingo this year. Picked for the necromancer square. Also would work as a book with a number in the title or maybe a book featuring ghosts? Are dead gods ghosts?
Rating 2 of 5
Summary: Urban Fantasy, not modern: lawyer necromancers work towards a good restructuring of a bankrupt god, other not so nice necromancer lawyers want a bad restructuring of said god.
Review: Definitely would have DNF’d this if not for Bingo. Maybe It's because I’m a lawyer for a living that this book annoyed me? I don’t know -- although it's not like anyone is trying to actually imitate the actual practice of law in this book. I didn’t like our main character, I didn’t understand her motivations, or whether she had any. She doesn’t really have an ‘arc.’ She is a really skilled necromancer at the beginning, and she is just ‘skilled necromancers about’ throughout the book. I also didn’t like our supporting cast, except for the junior fire priest, he was pretty okay. There was a ‘superhero’ feel to the magic and mythical creatures in this book, which again I’m ‘off’ presently. I can’t imagine I’ll continue with this series. If I do it will be for world building which is pretty novel. I will also say that I profoundly disliked the first half of this book, and liked the second half more… so even without Bingo if I’d somehow pushed my way through the first half I totally would have finished it. There is an almost YA feel to this book even though it definitely isn't. Is there a genre name for books that are somewhere between YA and adult?
As a final note, I didn’t really like the narration on the audible version, she just made all the characters seem so --- flippant? -- but maybe that is just how they are written?
Ninth House - Leigh Bardugo
BINGO: Picked for Bingo, specifically, University setting (Hard Mode) would also work as story featuring a ghost (And I’d argue Hard Mode) AND Chapter Chapter Epigraphs.
Rating: 4 of 5
Summary: Fantasy Noir, Yale student from the wrong side of the tracks who can see ghosts poorly investigates a disappearance and two murders.
Review: This book is obviously trying to be a bit more ‘literary’ than the rest of the stuff on this list. Alex Stern is a very refreshing protagonist. Damaged in ways that are believable and interesting, with motivations and limitations that make sense. She makes bad choices often for reasons that are very understandable. And although she verges on the annoyingly incompetent she doesn’t cross that line. The setting is super fun and I personally really liked the non-linear story. This book does that Rivers of London thing except with New Haven instead of London, which even as someone with 0 connection to New Haven, and no desire to ever go there, was still very interesting. The supporting cast is excellent, the author has such care for her three protagonists. Although this book is obviously setting itself up for a sequel, I kind of wish it hadn’t done that. Exploring the world and this magical Yale is what makes this book so fun, and now that it's ‘done’ I’d be very worried a squeal won’t be as interesting. Also, this book has a good mystery, not like Agatha Christie good, but still very good.
This is also true Noir. The brash outsider protagonist who doesn’t play by the rules, the not evil but definitely not good authority figures who are ultimately incapable of providing justice. Not all the bad guys get punished etc etc. I like Noir so that's a plus. Honestly if I was doing half stars I’d give this 4.5
The Unspoken Name - A. K. Larkwood (Book 1 of Serpents Gates)
BINGO: Picked for Book Club Bingo Square. Also qualifies as a 2020 book (Hard Mode). Would have also counted as a necromancer book.
Rating: 2 of 5
Summary: Sci-Fi/Fantasy, a young orc girl is brought up by an aloof and power hungry wizard over the course of three, only somewhat related short stories.
Review: I’m glad I read this book, even though I didn’t love it. The setting is interesting. There are a bunch of ‘worlds’ some of which are dying, and main characters pilot spaceships sail ships between them. There is also strong characterization in this book, except maybe from our main character, Csorwe. She reminded me a bit of Shadow from American Gods—just kind of there. Now what I’m going to say next is going to seem like a non-sequitur: she has a super believable romance subplot in the book which I do think was handled extremely well. I loved the supporting character of Tal. He’s a truly unique protagonist. Selfish, rude, sullen, petty, shallow, a boot licker. He’s like… Jezal from the beginning of “The Blade Itself,” mixed with…. Ricewind from Disc World? mixed with Rimmer from Red Dwarf? Something like that? Anyway, I like him. I wish he was in it more. His ending is my favorite part of this whole book.
I think the problems with this book lies with the plot. There is too much going on, and too little happening at the same time. There are so many places and settings visited, and none are properly fleshed out, the action is kind of dull, and the writing can be too. Too many characters are thrust on you that genuinely don't matter. This feels like 3 books in one, none of which are interesting enough to be their own short story crammed together. I could see this series, if that is what it's going to be, getting better now that the setting has been crammed down our throats, so even though I only gave this a 2/5 I’ll probably read the second one.
Prince of Thorns - Mark Lawrence (Book 1 of the Broken Empire)
BINGO: An Unsuccessful Break from Bingo, Bingo useless, although maybe necromancer?
Rating: 2 of 5
Summary: Grimdark, Your angsty teenage brother’s idol wants to be emperor.
Review: My first crack at Mark Lawrence. I liked First Law a lot (although I DNF’d ‘Best Served Cold’), and have not done any of the other standalones, or started the new one. I like Black Company tons. So I’m fine with grimdark. That first chapter was unique, not in a bad way, made but in a way that was quickly undermined by the rest of the story. I think it's fine to have hate-able protagonists— see my discussion of Tal above— but that’s not really what Jorge is. I think he’s more or less presented as a plain old hero, almost right from the beginning. The book just info dumps on you what a morally bankrupt person this guy is right up front, and then basically he’s fine the rest of the book. There is something like the beginnings of a redemptive arc in his story, but really not. And I want to be clear about what I mean by that, the book is setting everything up for such an arc, but at least in Book 1, there is no pay off. The guy is ‘getting better’ but as close as he gets to thinking, gee rape is bad, is concluding, paying a prostitute is more fun. Then he wonders…. Maybe it would be even more fun to have actual consensual sex. That’s Jorge growth. I guess if Lawrence is writing from an unredeemed teenage perspective, that's probably the level of insight such a person would have, so credit where credit is due.
Having said all that, I think Lawrence is great writer. The story is fun, and has some great moments. I think the Jorge dueling his dad's champion is as good (maybe better) than Brom dueling Ser Vardis in ASOIF. The Post-Apocalyptic setting is well done (something I tend to like— fantasy set in this is our earth, but we really messed it up). The action is great, and the plot moves at a blazing pace. I might get around to the rest of this series, or I might just try something else by Lawrence. Honestly, this is more like a 2.5 than a straight 2.
The Hobbit - J. R. R. Tolkien
BINGO: Bingo useless. Do the Eagles count as Magic pets who talk -- hard no!
Rating: 5 of 5
Summary: Young Adult? The one and only OG Hobbit, Bilbo M-Fer Baggins goes on a questionable holiday.
Review: Gotta five star this thing. Can’t really say much about it other than echo what I said above about RotK. I’ll say I’d forgotten how much less fleshed out Tolkien’s world building is in this one. Also I think it's funny how dwarves, who are basically badasses in LotRs are totally feckless in the Hobbit until the end. I mean seriously, 13 dwarves go to kill a dragon and they start out with 0 swords/axes between the lot of them? what was the plan— politely ask him to leave?
Also there is a dramatic tone change in the book. The Hobbit goes from children’s story all the way through when they get to Laketown, and then shifts to being like an extra part of the Lord of the Rings during the battle of the five armies and its surrounding events and aftermath. Anyway, this is just a darling story, and a great contrast to Price of Thorns. Anyone know of YA books like the hobbit? (other than, I guess Narnia) -- let me know in the commentssss!
MurderBot Short Stories (all 4 of them) - Martha Wells
Bingo: picked for ACE/ARO (Hard Mode) I guess this is also five short stories (Hard Mode?)
Rating: 5 out of 5
Summary: SCI-FI: Security cyborg hacks his way to freedom, ends up doing… basically what he’d been programmed to do before freeing himself afterwards.
This was great. Just great. Last year I read Ready Player One (1 of 5 stars). Martha Wells could give a class on how to integrate pop culture into your setting in a way that is interesting and refreshing, and she did it without using a single actual pop culture reference. Murder Bot is darling, the stories are light hearted and fun with enough depth to be interesting without massive exposition on the relationship between man and machine. There is a kind of upstairs/downstairs dynamic to the way the robots and constructs interact with each other in this book, and super interesting dynamics between human → augmented human → construct → robot → dumb robot. On one level these stories are about the prejudice that Murderbot faces, but Murderbot is prejudiced too, not just against humans, which is like the funny joke, but also against robots he views as ‘lower level’ than himself. Anyway, binge reading these might not have been the best way to do it, but it was amazing. I managed to stop myself from diving right into the full length novel, but I promise you I’ll get to it before Bingo 2021.
If I was going to criticize these stories, they are all sorta similar in terms of structure and pacing—after the first one that is. I am concerned the novel might drag if it's more of the same, that's partly why I’m waiting, give me three months and even if it is the same I’ll love it.
Eric - Terry Pratchett (Book 9 of the Discworld)
Bingo: Bingo break! but a book to make me laugh, easy mode.
Rating 4 of 5
Summary: Satirical Fantasy, wizard is accidentally summoned instead of demon, hijinks throughout time and space ensue. Also there is a parrot.
Review: When I was maybe fifteen I read Small Gods. Had somehow never heard of Pratchett or the Discworld, and even though I liked it, I never read any more Pratchett until maybe two years ago? Now I’m slowly working my way through all of them in publication order (although I accidentally read witches abroad out of order somehow)... anyway, I’ve reached Eric, a (I think) less well liked Pratchett short(er) story featuring Rincewind, who is probably a less well liked Discworld protagonist. But I really liked this one. My favorite Rincewind story to date. I loved the character of Eric, our teenage demonologist. Many it was reading Eric so close to reading Prince of Thorns, but I mean…. Isn’t Jorge basically Eric? They’ve each got the same number of letters in their name, they both want power eternal and pretty girls. They both are getting jacked with by powers both seen and unseen and are none too pleased about it, they both have bad relationships with their fathers, and are obsessed with their moms. And before anyone in the comments says something smart about how Faust obviously influenced Prince of Thorns, and Eric is a straight up parody of Faust so of course they share something in common, to that I would say… Mephistopheles never eats half an egg and cress sandwich.
Eric is a bit on the nose, even for Pratchett, but the demons re-doing hell as corporate culture is really funny, and it's just so charmingly Discworld to think that the demon overseeing Sisyphus is encouraging him while he pushed the rock up the hill. Also, while I’ve always disliked the luggage, there is so little story to Eric that the luggages’s general antics didn’t annoy me like they sometimes do.
Malice - John Gwynne (Book 1: Faithful and the Fallen)
BINGO: Not picked for Bingo, but I guess this is Magical pet (hard mode)
Rating: 4 of 5
Summary: Epic Fantasy, stand-in AngloSaxons and stand-in Vikings set the stage for three more books, in a well executed trope and trope subversion fest.
Review: I need to stop taking Bingo breaks if I’m ever going to get to blackout! So I picked this up after reading a review on fantasy, and I liked it, well enough that plunged into Book 2 right afterwards -- although I probably should not have, I'm slowing down in Valor even though it might be objectively better than Malice. This is as typical modern-esque epic fantasy as you can get, Wheel of Time, Malazan (not really), The Farseer Trilogy (is series from 25 years ago modern?) etc etc....
This book features so many fantasy tropes, it should be terrible, but it's not. It is actually pretty darn good. One thing I liked about ASOIAF is that you get POV chapters from people who are maybe villains and certainly on the wrong side. Here we get a smorgasbord of POVs showing us all sides of the coming conflict, generally from pretty sympathetic characters, even when they are on the wrong side. People praise John Gwynne for his action scenes are they are very strong (even if they do get a bit repetitive after a while).
But like MY GOODNESS the tropes, (1) chosen one who is the blacksmith’s son (2) mean old lady witch who is actually nice with a talking bird; (3) upcoming battle between good god and evil god; (4) magic pet wolf (5) mysterious older sword master trains hero. I mean… you can tell things are not going to well for the village in which this kid grows up! Honestly, the most predictable thing about this books is thinking: oh, I bet really bad stuff is going to happen to all these reasonable authority figures.
But each of these tropes is either really well executed or twisted just enough to make it truly unique. I mean these books have TWO Gandalfs in them, but there is an evil one and good one, and no one knows which is which! Which actually is kind of like Lord of the Rings… a lot… but it's different and well done I promise!
Conclusion: I need to read the Murderbot Novel and a novel with color in the title to get to my first ever BINGO, and I've got a lot of work left for Blackout. (or wait... is Eric not a short story? do I need one more for 5?) Also I cannot fathom how people are already done with Bingo.
submitted by tramtramtram to Fantasy [link] [comments]

2020.08.20 20:41 Changeling_Wil Greeks are just Baltic people wearing funny hats

Greetings badhistory!
So, long story short I had been discussing hyperborea with a friend. As in 'the classical myth' not the neo-pagan/neo-nazi/neo-fascist insanity.
Afterwards I thought to myself 'I don't actually know that much about how much the ancient Greeks knew about the baltic, I should google it'.
First thing google brings me is a site going on about 'the baltic greeks exposed'. It was wild. Anyway, I think 'oh I could make a badhistory post about this' but now the site doesn't exist/when you try to access it it just wants you to buy the domain.
Thankfully wayback is here to help
So first things first: They have no footnotes or bibliography. This is a big yikes.
Before I properly start this groundbreaking work off, I should mention that, in order to fully understand it, you should at the very least have a basic understanding of Felice Vinci’s earth shattering book, “The Baltic Origins of Homer’s Epic Tales”.
Now, annoyingly I couldn't find any reviews of this over on jstor so I'm forced to look elsewhere for reviews of the work .
But from looking around it seems the work tends to cherry pick and focus on evidence that supports its theory instead of actually judging the evidence and details offered by the source material.
So that's a big yikes there.
Circa 1800 BC, a large group of people from the modern day Baltic Sea, namely the states of Lithuania and Latvia, formed a mighty civilization. While they often fought, their technological advances were amazing. Eventually, the Balts moved southward through the Dnieper river, for reasons unknown. Eventually, they reached the Black Sea and the Aegean sea, forming what would eventually become Greece. They conquered and subjugated the locals, hereafter referred to as ethnic Greeks, and imposed their history on them. this The Finno-Korean Hyperwar?
I'll admit I'm no scholar of the Baltic in the classical/ancient period but as far as I'm aware, there was no 'grand technologically advanced baltic state' there as much as the Waring baltic tribes with the germanic ones to the west of them? Feel free to correct me.
Also, 1800bc? As in the 18th century BC? Before the Greek Dark Ages and the Dorian invasions? Weird place to put your population movement theory. I'm not sure on the exacts but aren't the Ionians and Aeolians fully moved in by the 16th century BC? Or at least settled there before the Dorians later punt them about.
The stories of the Balts, hereafter referred to as Baltic Greeks, eventually became legend, and the Baltic Greek caste partially forgot their ways, and believed that the stories that had been passed down to them had taken place in the Mediterranean, when they had actually taken place in the Baltic Sea. An author, Homer, eventually wrote these down circa 800 BC, confusing ancient Baltic cities such as Troy for places in the mediterranean, and believing that great Baltic Kings like Agamemnon were Greek. This is where I depart from Felice Vinci. I know that the priest subcaste of the Baltic Greeks never truly forgot their ancestral home. The priests were the last to agree to leave the ancient Baltic land, and their undying dream was to see their new home, Greece, joined in a mighty empire stretching to their ancient home in the Baltics.
Dude. Duuude. Citations. Please.
Like...where are you getting this? At all? You had one (sketchy and not using evidence correctly) book to support your first bit. But where are you getting any evidence for 'they were the last to leave'.
The Baltic Greek priests knew that powerful secrets existed in ancient Hyperborea, which they believed could help them rule the known world. They believed that Hyperborea was located either in the Baltics, or very close by.
I...if they didn't forget their history and used to live there, surely they'd know if it was or wasn't in the baltic?
So, the priests had to bide their time. Decades turned to centuries, and the Baltic Greek priests were still plotting as to how they would regain the Baltics, when a potential puppet came to power in what was now called Macedonia, namely king Amyntas III, in 393 BC. [...]Amyntas III presented a rare opportunity for the Baltic Greek priests: he was a Baltic Greek nationalist, and a strong military leader. [...] they would wait until the time was right, and Amyntas would share the knowledge of the Baltic homeland with his sons. One of them, or one of their descendants, was to retake the Baltics whenever possible.
What can be presented without evidence can be dismissed without evidence.
This being said: No, Amyntas III was not a baltic-greek nationalist. Putting aside the issue of using the term nationalist for classical material...just no. The fuck.
Alexander was taught the Baltic Greek secrets as soon as he could talk, and he made their retaking his life’s goal. However, as Alexander and his father both grew older, they realized their problem: the other Greek states wished to invade Persia, and they would have never supported a seemingly haphazard expedition north, through completely uncharted territory. Alexander, Philip, and the priests were unwilling to tell the other major greek states about the ancient home in the Baltics, if they did, the ancillary Greek states may have attempted to get there first.
'The Greeks wouldn't want to march north if we didn't tell them because they want to invade rich Persia, if we told them they'd ignore persia and march into the frozen north on the off chance the land that clearly wasn't great because we moved from it exists'.
Philip II and Alexander both knew that the earth was round, but were unaware of the circumference of the earth, and they did not know of the large bodies of water and other continents. So, their plan was this: they would form a league, known as the league of Corinth, which was made of many Greek States. They would declare war on the Persian Empire, and defeat them, and would continue with their conquests until they eventually circled around the earth and reached the Baltics.
'People don't want to march far from home into the great unknown. We'll make them march far from home into the great unknown'.
Poison was placed in Alexander’s wine, and he died after 10 days of agony. Alexander’s reported last words were that his empire should go “to the strongest”, but this is not true. His real last words certified that his unborn son should take the throne. The Generals knew that allowing another Baltic Greek from the bloodline of Alexander would be disastrous. So, they themselves took over various parts of Alexander’s empire, knowing that, as seperate states, it’d be harder for the Baltic Greeks to take over all of their land.
If Alexander was poisoned, had fever, drank too much etc is still disputed.
50 years after this, ethnic Greeks in Italy finalized their complete victory over the native Etruscans. They formed a mighty Republic, eventually an empire, that was by and large free of Baltic Greek taint.
I'm sorry when the fuck did Rome become Greek. Rome, the great Latin power. Did this guy just hear that Greeks lived in Magna Gracia and went ham? Are the baltic greeks meant to be the 'proud wise rulers' or an 'evil taint'? Is this fascist doublethink or not? I'm confused.
As you all know, their empire degenerated badly, and eventually a Baltic Greek was allowed to take control of the Roman Empire, a man by the name of Tarasis Kodisa Rousombladadiotes, later to be known as the Emperor Zeno. By this time, almost all Baltic Greeks, who were then and are now about 10% of the total Greek population, knew of the ancient homeland in the Baltics. Under Zeno, the once great empire was Hellenized, and their unspoken goal was to take the Baltics. This was the true goal of what was now called the Byzantine Empire for nearly 1000 years. The Byzantines, however, were constantly rebuffed in their attempts by the heroic efforts of the Bulgarians, Germans, and Persians, among others.
Okay so first off:
Man the Byzantines must have really sucked at reading maps then, huh? Reclaiming north africa, Italy, bits of Spain, fighting off Persians and Turks in Anatolia, trying to keep the bulgarians and Balkans controlled. Not really a path to the baltic.
The only bright spot in Byzantine history, which was full of typical Baltic Greek atrocities and greed, was the Emperor Justinian, the final Ethnic Greek Emperor of Rome. 50 years after the hostile takeover of the Roman Empire by the Baltic Greeks, the Emperor Justinian ceased any foolish attempts to invade the north, instead regaining the Byzantine Empire’s rightful land in the Mediterranean.
I'm sorry what? An illyrian who spoke Latin natively is the 'last ethnic greek'?
there was not a single Ethnic Greek crowned Emperor from Justinian’s death in 565, to the final fall of the Byzantine Empire in 1453.
I mean... in the sense of 'they're Romans, not Greeks' he's not wrong.
A majorly important event, unbeknownst to the Baltic Greeks at large at the time, occurred in 1230 AD. [...]somehow, this insane priest walked 750 miles north, to Transylvania, which at the time was the home of the heavily Germanic Teutonic Knights.
Andrew II of Hungary expelled them from transylvania in 1225.
He again survived the perilous journey back home, and gave the texts personally to the Byzantine Emperor John III. Emperor John took these texts to his greatest alchemists, but they informed the Emperor that they would take 250 years to decipher.
That's now how translating texts works. That's not how it works at all!
The Empire would not last that long. The Turks from the east slowly but surely took Byzantine land from them, until the Baltic Greeks were left with only the city of Constantinople to call their own.
We just ignoring the Despotate of the Morea here? The one that didn't fall till 1460?
a Baltic Greek defector informed the Ottoman Turkish Emperor Mehmed II of the entire Baltic Greek history, and the maps that were nearly fully deciphered, that would lead to the Byzantines potentially taking over the known world. Mehmed could not allow this, and he decided to attack Constantinople.
Dude, you've made a massive deal about how hard it is to march from Greece to the Baltics. How the hell were the Byzantines going to do that in 1453? With or without maps?
Constantine XI, the final Byzantine emperor, would not allow the loss of the last possible aid for the Baltic Greeks. So, right before the city fell, Constantine left the city under cover of darkness, and fled to a cave, where Baltic Greeks believe he became a Marble Emperor, who will one day, when Greece and the Baltics are under the same Baltic Greek flag, arise and rule the world, providing the needed map to Hyperborea.
That's not how the marble emperor myth works. An angel stole him away and hid him in a cave as a statue till he'll one day return to unite the Greeks.
32 years later, in 1485, Christopher Columbus had an idea. A Baltic Greek himself, the descendant of the still-extant Italian Griko community, he knew that things were desperate. Columbus wished to help his people dominate the world, and he set out to do the only thing he could think of: like Alexander, he would set out to circumnavigate the world, and find a new route to the Baltics. He wished to find a route above Russia, that would lead him straight to the Baltics, which he planned to, at a later date, attempt to capture with a Baltic Greek force.
Man the people in his story really don't know how to go places do they. Does he have the same issue following directions? Does he end up in the bathroom when trying to get to the kitchen?
The Baltic Greeks came to view Columbus as a traitor, and they became stagnant for many years, secretly dominating the culture of other countries such as Italy and Russia, the latter of whom they had spread their Orthodox ‘Religion’ to.
The Rus started to convert to Orthodoxy in the 10th century. Officially. Unofficially it's older.
Also note that we've gone from 'baltic priests keep their old religion alive and it mingles with hellenic' [no shit they're both from indo-european roots] to 'baltic priests made the orthodox church'.
Sadly, Napoleon was defeated by the crafty tactics of the Baltic Greeks
[Confused British noises]
After 8 long years, the Greek forces had won, and a king was to be chosen. They chose a German, Otto, of House Wittelsbach. Many people then, and to this day, have asked why this was done. It’s obvious when you think about it. If a Baltic Greek was made King, just like the Byzantine emperors many years prior, he would have been obsessed with openly capturing the Baltics, which would have been potentially disastrous to Baltic Greek plans. So, a hapless German Royal was chosen, allowing the Baltic Greeks to operate in the shadows.
Honestly I'm expecting them to say that Baltic Greeks are lizardmen.
Otto was related (somewhat) to the Komnenos and Laskaris dynasties via his ancestor John II (John's maternal grandmother's mother's father's mother was Maria Laskarina whose mother was the daughter of Alexios III Angelos whose father was Andronikos Doukas Angelos whose mother was Theodora Komnene who was one of the daughters of Alexios I Komnenos). A Monarchy was decided upon and chosen without the input of Greeks.
[...] side note: similar to jewesses, Baltic Greek girls are trained from birth to use their looks and charms to try and ensnare powerful men in their trap)
Ah, it's a neo-nazi. Gotcha.
The Baltic Greeks also wanted Russia to lose, and they sent their Orthodox Christian lackey Grigori Rasputin to ensure that this would happen.
No conspiracy theory is complete without Rasputin, is it?
The Baltic Greeks would easily be able to dominate Latvia, Lithuania, and Estonia, as they are taught all three languages surreptitiously by their parents.
Knowing a language doesn't make you king of places. I'm not the bloody king of England just because my parents and schooling system taught me English. If I ran around saying I can dominate a small bit of France because I know some French, they'd call me a loony. Supreme executive power derives from a mandate from the masses not from linguistic expertise.
The Baltic Greeks were soundly defeated by 1922, and the 1,000,000 Greek interlopers in Turkey were finally kicked out for good.
...are we calling 'ethnic cleansing and population transfers' 'cleaning up interlopers' or am I misunderstanding this?
n the Jewish Communist state known as the Soviet Union
Why do these crazy people always end up being Nazis?
His plan was to make the Soviet Union into a death machine
Why hi there black book of communism.
Hitler knew about the Hyperborean magic that Baltic Greek Stalin wished to harness
Are we in an anime now? Is it magic hitler v technocrat mecha Stalin time? Is Cyborg FDR going to fight tentacle-girl Hirohito? Was WW2 a harem anime with Churchill as the star?
1939 came along, and Mussolini, although he was a great man, made a mistake.
'Great man' is a weird way to spell 'fascist that ended up dangling upside down after being torn to pieces by the people'.
That same year, Stalin invaded all three Baltic States, and the ancient Baltic Satellite state of Finland.
The fins aren't baltic and we're ignoring the Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact now?
Hitler’s attack on the Soviet Union seemed bound for success, and he soon took back the Baltics, and appointed Alfred Rosenberg to lead them. But, there was a menace far to the west: Franklin D. Roosevelt, himself a Baltic Greek
He sided with the Baltic Greeks Stalin and Roosevelt. Initially, he wished for peace after the German victory in France, but Stalin and Roosevelt blackmailed him with secrets involving his various affairs, and he was forced to stay in the war.
You're confusing Churchill with Halifax.
Enver Hoxha, the Heroic head of Albania, knew about the Baltic Greek menace. He split with the USSR when he found out about it, and afterwards he opposed them at every turn.
This guy is both pro Hoxha and pro-hitler.
I don't get it.
But they are still used. Young Albanian teens use them to make love in, often resulting in pregnancy. Hoxha’s spirit sees this, and smiles at the copulating couples, knowing that his dream is still alive, and that the great Albanian race will continue to exist.
Wait, it was Albanian nationalism all along?
As you may see, the Albanians are possibly the last great hope for us all. Someday, I hope to live there in peace, after my victory against the Baltic Greeks. That day may never come, but it is my dream, my desire, my very essence lives in Albania. [...] I have recently acquired a gorgeous Albanian bride, and she is currently pregnant with my first Albanian Son, who I shall name Adolf Enver. I have acquired multiple shirts with the Albanian flag on them, and I shall wear them exclusively until my last day.
Oh, so he's not even Albanian.
Also 'acquired' by the emperor they're your spouse not a potted plant.
Some of you may ask if my motto is still “88”, for Heil Hitler. The answer is yes and no. To me, 88 is still my motto, but it stands for something else: still H and H, but now it is Hitler and Hoxha.
Hitlerism with albanian characteristics? We must secure bunkers for the race to continue?
Baltic Greeks by and large blend in with the average Greek population, yet they are generally less Swarthy. There are two major strains of Baltic Greeks, the Latvian Baltic Greeks, and the Lithuanian Baltic Greeks.
Breaking news! Estonia doesn't real.
submitted by Changeling_Wil to badhistory [link] [comments]

2020.08.17 17:07 READMYSHIT The Creep Dive Episode Guide

Date Title Cassie Sophie Jen Sidebars and guest stars Creep of the Week
1 12/12/2018 Canoe Believe It?? Alan Rickman never read Harry Potter John Darwin faked his own death in a canoeing accident Seamus on ket with Mary McAleese (Twitter thread)
2 12/12/2018 GP-OH My God who is SHE Samantha Azzopardi pays a visit to Ireland. One of many as she scammed her way around the world An outtake from This is Going to Hurt: Secret Diaries of a Junior Doctor. Woman eats placenta (or blood clots)
3 12/12/2018 A Tale Too Tragic Tania Head, woman who claimed to be a survivor of the attacks on the World Trade Center on September 11 The Juggalos (Insane Clown Posse) Christians in disguise Reddit Guy meets the Devil. Black Mercedes Cassie reveals she used to be Born Again Christian. Jen's personal Angel, Happy Acres
4 11/01/2019 The American Dream or The American Peen What Ever Happened To: Lorena and John Wayne Bobbit. (Wife cuts off husband's dick after he raped her) Swiss cheese Pervert. Man would like a cheesey wank
5 11/01/2019 11 Lies and Counting Warrior Eli. Epic catfish story of a supermom who turned out to be teenager, Emily Dear Sinead O'Connor and Prince had a pillow fight. Prince takes it too far Jen first reveals she was a catfish/troll
6 11/01/2019 A 17 Year Old Mystery Solved by Sleuths Mystery of Lyle Stevik's suicide solved by DNA Doe Testing Ray's Death Documentary (admission of murder). Lady of the Dunes
7 25/01/2019 A Story Blown Wildy Out of Proportion Jimi Heselden segways into the afterlife. Rebba Burger maimed and killed from a whipped cream thing Lambo. Weird radio book review, hosted by Gay Byrne in which Gery Ryan allegedly kills a lamb A man fashions a flying saucer with helium balloons and sends his son flying off for attention
8 01/02/2019 An Unholy Hypocrite, The Dungarvan Angel of Death Travis the Troubled Teen David Matheson, former gay conversion therapist, comes out as gay Fr Michael Kennedy fakes an AIDS epidemic in Waterford. Gets the attention of Princess Diana Travis, the chimp and Creep Dive mascot (a classic!)
9 09/02/2019 The Greatest Writer that Never Was James Frey, A Million Little Pieces (fake memoir) Story of JT LeRoy (racoon penis) Dan Mallory (fake memoir)
10 15/02/2019 The Randy Mr. Hands How Joe Manuella Found Love, Robert De Niro impersonator Mr. Hands! Guy gets killed from bottoming a horse Ellen Coyne and Cassie become friends via Twitter
11 22/02/2019 The Curious Case of Crack Addict Jimmy(part 1) The Girl Who Predicted Her Own Death Tickling endurance competitions funded my some omnipotent millionaire (who obviously has a fetish)
12 22/02/2019 The Curious Case of Crack Addict Jimmy (part 2) That time the Washington Post had a Pulitzer briefly. Janet Cooke and the 8 year old heroin addict
13 01/03/2019 The Fine Line Between Exoneration and Execution The story of Cameron Todd Willingham (a innocent man sentenced to death) Pissing and menstrating in the Stuart era (not Victorian, Jen)
14 08/03/2019 The MSN Murder Mystery Momo: Online Suicide Game MSN Murder. Girl kill herself after online bullying, turns out to be a neighbourhood mom Elizabeth and Theranos
15 15/03/2019 Who Let the Cat Out The Noid, the Domino's mascot that led to a murder Mary Bale: Cat in the Wheelie Bin Topsy the Elephant: Tesla vs Edison
16 22/03/2019 Oyster Man, A Salacious Sausage Fest and A Con Confidence (Creep Live #1) Nicholas Barclay AKA Frédéric Bourdin (missing child imposter) Armin Meiwes, German cannibal Oyster Man (Dublin creep!)
17 01/04/2019 A Haunted Hormonal Teen, A Slender Bender, A Mother Love to Death (Creep Live #2) Dee Dee Blanchard murder by her daughter, seemingly incapacitated, Gypsy Rose. Enfield Haunting, poltergeist in a North London council house Slenderman possee
18 05/04/2019 Who is Timmothy Pitzen?? Disappearance and reappearance (???) of Timmoth Pitzen Christine Chubbuck, suicide on live TV Ford has a horn for Edison
19 12/04/2019 The Beautiful Lie Florida Man, pancake guy Belle Gibson, noted scammer Coco the Gorilla: artist, photographer and communicator
20 21/04/2019 There's a Catfish in the Water Lincoln Lewis catfish, Lydia Abdelmalek The most awkward book club of all time Girl with no vainga gets impreganted from a knife
21 27/04/2019 A Sasquatch, A Tinder Date With a Cannibal and The Life and Ruin of Anna Nicole Smith The Anna Nicole Smith Story Sasquatch Origin Story
22 04/05/2019 Friends From The College Cult Larry Ray: Creepy Dad Cult Whatever Happened to Baby Tyler?
23 11/05/2019 A Love As Deep As The Sea, A Shared Twinsanity and Better The Catfish You Know? Sabina & Ursula: Murderous Swedish Twins Suicide of Megan Meier Some people really love dolphins
24 18/05/2019 The Cat’s Out of The Bag for The Internet’s Maddest Man A Catfish Love Triangle (that ends in murder) The Luka Magnotta Story Jeremy Kyle
25 27/05/2019 The Secret Russian ‘Super Army’ and A Fertility Doctor Who Took Things Into His Own Hands Dr. Cline, fertility doctor who takes matters into his own hands Russian science experiment to create super humans (humanzee) Belle Gibson update (ep. 19)
26 01/06/2019 Larry and The Lawnchair of Dreams The eponymous Larry, an instant classic creep (that is not creepy at all) Moby
27 07/06/2019 The World’s Worst Baby Snatcher and The Ill-Prepared Cannibal Another Catfish Love Triangle and Baby Heist Isa Sagawa: A Cannibal in Paris
28 15/06/2019 Why You Should Never Let Granny Do The Ouija Board Story of Anna Delvy, epic swindler Ouija Board Murder Whale dick tentacle and the guy who honours a dead murderer (Twitter Thread)
29 21/06/2019 A Dead Man, A Cipher, a Mystery Somerton Man: Mystery Australian Man and an Undeciphered Code Ariel Castro kidnappings Delivery Man Haunts Cabin Groom kids on brides dress
30 28/06/2019 It’s Never Plain Sailing The Disappearance of Brian Swanson (into another dimension?) #blueball A shark buffet Juliane Koepcke, the sole survivor of a plane crash that left her stranded in the Amazon Rainforest Boris Johnson
31 07/07/2019 The Lost Family, The Last Eunuch and the Lust for the High Life Tromp Family Road Trip. Australian family collectively lose their mind A Philanthropic Couple with a Secret in the Attic Sun Yaoting; the last Eunuch of China.
32 11/07/2019 A Trio of Clones, Coercion and Courtship A shitty first-date The McDonald's-Nude Heist The phenomenon of a group of self cloning crayfish
33 19/07/2019 Brain-Eating Zombies, The Boy Who Tried to Blow Up Bjork and a Beary Bad Idea Story of Björk's would-be assassin Timothy Treadwell: Bear Enthusiast Furries and Brain eating zombie fungus Grunting man in a gimp suit
34 27/07/2019 A Priceless Love Affair and Something of a Pickle Debbie Montgomery Johnson get defrauded millions in an online dating scam Peeing and pooping in space. Creepy nudes escalates quick (to murder)
35 04/08/2019 Jen’s Solo Ghost Story the tale of Dear David, a creepy child ghost who has been haunting the hallways of illustrator Adam Ellis Horse Girl
36 11/08/2019 When a Dream Life Turns Into a Weird and Creepy Nightmare Dream House goes sour with letters from an ominous writer called, The Watcher Mystery Stripper Jen has the inside scoop on Area 51 Scout's arrival! Woof Canadian Serial Killers
37 18/08/2019 The Hero Who Didn't Know His Name and a Real Life Dr. WHO?? Story of Jean-Claude Romand: Murderer and Imposter Creep Dine With Me: Megan and Hazel. The story of Steven Stayner
38 01/09/2019 Don't Bookmark Your Murder Tips and a Real Life Mission Impossible How to not get away with murder (Daniel Brophy) Personal creep with creepy neighbour and a never ending gift exchange A missionary who get murdered by the Sentinelese
39 09/09/2019 A Twist in The Tale, The Devil Down Under and A Wild Slide A Catfish With a Happy Ending Mysterious Death of Phoebe Handsjuk Deal the Devil Downunder,Story of Michael Atkins and Matthew Leveson
40 13/09/2019 Move Over Travis, There’s a Bad Badger in Town and The Sad Tale of The Sorry Cannibals Caroline Calloway content! Alive: The reluctant cannibals The antics of Stoffel the honey badger
41 20/09/2019 British Fairies, Irish Con Artists and Asian Angels Cassie's Personal Creep and Misadventure in Berlin (featuring Moe) An Irish Kidnapping The Cottingley Fairy Hoax
42 28/09/2019 When a loving Christian family inadvertently adopt a 22 year old sociopath with violent tendencies The tale of Natalia Grace, a Ukrainian Orphan with dwarfism #childdeception Helen Bailey: Author who penned her own death Jacob Barnett, Child Prodigy
43 06/10/2019 The Girl...Who Laughed...As A Man Got Sewn Into The Body of a Horse Story of Nathan Carman and a Sunken Boat A Runaway Bride Countess Elizabeth Báthory, World worst female serial killer? Carl Beach, Richard Madely
44 15/10/2019 What Happens When You Exorcise a Mild Mannered Michael? (Creep Live #3) Ireland's Own Bermuda Triangle An exorcism gone wrong Goose on the Loose! A goose named Andy
45 21/10/2019 A Guest Ghost Story and The Haunted Spots of Dublin Dutch Family in a Basement (and assorted ghost stories) Creep Dine With Me: Fainche. A Dublin 8 Haunting
46 26/10/2019 The Tragedy of the Triplets A tragic tale of triplets and a social experiment Haunted Nazi Dummy
47 31/10/2019 A Catfish Convict, Dawn of The Ed and a Goat Gets Giddy for Piss - It’s our Halloween Spooktacular! Rape Ads, Fake Sonograms, and a Catfisher’s Web of Lies Ed Gein, his mother and the inspiration for Psycho A goat with a penchant for piss (human piss)
48 12/11/2019 An Amuse Bouche of Creep Catch Ups AND The Human Baby Zoo Update on Belle Gibson (ep. 19) Canadian Quintuplets (Human Baby Zoo) Update on Ukrainian Orphan (ep. 42) T.I. (obsessed with daughter's hymen)
49 17/11/2019 The Greatest No-Show-Man and the Mighty Meaty Murderer Threatin, metal band on world tour (with no audience but great hair) Joe Metheny: a mighty meaty murder #serialkiller Donegal Creeps caught climbing a hospital to ouija
50 25/11/2019 Oh No! Where Did Moe Go? Moe Davis: Another chimp fiasco. Travis 2.0 (ep. 8)
51 03/12/2019 A Haunted Galway Baby, a Mystery Man in Sligo and The Spine Tingling Story of the Sleepless Russians (Creep Live #4) Peter Bergmann, a mystery man in Sligo reminiscent of Somerton Man (ep. 29) #blueball Haunted Galway baby #haunted Russian sleep deprivation experiment (this is pretty harrowing) Harry meets the Creeps for the first time Dick Dicker: Unabomber meets Mr. Hands
52 06/12/2019 A Life Heavy on Lies, Light on Lols Jennifer Pan, a Vietnamese-Canadian teen kills her parents (well one of them) Dave, the randy duck
53 17/12/2019 The Woman Who Accidentally Solved Her Own Mystery Disappearance Netty Nance accidently solves her own kidnapping (spoiler: it was her own "mother") Carlos Mariotti and a novel idea to save his mangled hand (spoiler: it doesn't work) Public Universal Friend. First recorded case of non-binary person? Mommy blogger swindles Shauna Sex Síopa!
54 05/01/2020 The Cannibal Cop and A January Assortment of Creeps Cassie tricks a girl into think she's going to Disney Gilberto Valle, the cannibal cop, caught via chat room #cannibal People used to post their kids around! Jeffrey Epstein. German ladies who set a zoo ablaze and killed 20 primates
55 10/01/2020 Too Many Mothers, Too Much Motherly Love and A Small Town Scandal with Massive Consequences Creep Live #5) Bobby Dunbar went missing but when he reappeared to mothers came forward to claim Barbara Daly Baekeland gets murdered (and fucked?) by her son #murder #incest The mysterious Circleville letters #murder #blueball Jen gets send a video of a man fucking a chicken Tiny Indonesian man convicted of the most amount if rapes
56 17/01/2020 Three Cheers for Murder Dying killing to be popular. Cheer leader murder! Karla Homolka, Canada's only female serial killer (this was just an off the cuff creep) One of our very own creepettes has their dog fucked by some local scoundrel :( Cork Christmas Party Shenanigans!
57 25/01/2020 Your Mother Sucks Creep In Hell True Stories behind the production of The Exorcist Jen creeps her own parasite which she definitely didn't get in Centra Parcs Terry McMahon goes on a tirade by his feminist daughter
58 31/01/2020 You Can't Make A Dick Out Of The American Penal System Steven Jay Russell, amazing story of the man who escaped from prison multiple times Andrea Mara; the man who faked his MIL out the car window, armchair sleuths and just how dire your Google search history gets when you kill fictional people for a living Belle Gibson update! She's Muslim now (ep. 19)
31/01/2020 The Creep Hive #1 Jen helps her housemate pee in New Zealand Tampon Girl!!
59 07/02/2020 Who’s side are you on? Story of Ursula Hermann: the German equivalent of Madeleine McCann. Epic creep Sophie admits she ate a raw rasher thinking it was parma ham Some people have non-verbal thought (mini Twitter thread) Graham Linehan (Glinner)
07/02/2020 The Creep Hive #2: The Casualties of The Swan The Sur-jury, The Swan and other horrific reality shows
60 14/02/2020 A Prince and a Perfect Murder Chris Benoit Canadian wrestler. Double murder suicide Shawna from Sex Siopa to share a big juicy salacious royal affair. A lot of creeps reported their mothers fed them raw sausages
15/02/2020 The Creep Hive #3: Schofe's done a runner Cassie discusses her sexuality and everyone cries "Showgirls came out at a very key point in my life" Phillip Schofield literally does a runner
61 21/02/2020 The world’s most badass backpacker, Ireland’s biggest ever manhunt and hotdog handjobs (Creep Live #6) Brendan O'Donnell: Ireland's Biggest Manhunt #serialkiller Kari Ferrell: Hipster Grifter. Gets employed by Vice and exposed Salt Creek Kidnapping. Backpackers take revenge #violence All dogs and the Dublin guy faked an abduction of an elderly person
22/02/2020 The Creep Hive #4: Never trust a Murphy Bed Dead tired, people who've died in Murphy beds!
62 28/02/2020 And it was all cum and paper mâché (Creep Live #7) Gerard John: some local prisoners pose as a young woman and blackmail and fragile young man. Alex Malarkey goes into a coma after a car accident. When he wakes he claims to have met Jesus in Heaven... Man struggles to keeping his wife suitably embalmed Jen discusses laying eggs Katie Hopkins getting the CUNT award
01/03/2020 The Creep Hive #5: Hope Springs Terminal Duffy was kidnapped :( Psychologist hides camera on women with Munchausen Jen says I brought poppers to a live show but it was Cool Swan. Twitter thread about guys pissing in their mouths Sarah, the creep transition year student tells us about Hope Ybarra, Munchausen mom Carlow Judicial System. 73 year old mad jailed for ramming car parked on path
63 07/03/2020 Hike Life Nightmare and The OG Love is Blind Sun Myung Moon and the Church of Unification. It's the Moonies! A Russian Misadventure. 9 hikers die mysteriously in the northern Ural mountains Youtuber faked his girlfriend's death. 21 year old Stephanie impersonates her granny (after she's murdered)
07/03/2020 The Creep Hive #6: Joint custody Cassie meets LeBron James Joint Custody. John Wood mummifies his own leg. The ultimate creep craft.
64 13/03/2020 The OG Disease Spreader: It's Typhoid Mary Sherry Pie turns out to be a super creep (in a really bad way) and has now caused an editing nightmare for producers. Typhoid Mary, famed asymptomatic carrier Putin brings in a new law so he can rule for forever.
13/03/2020 The Creep Hive #7: CAVERN OF PUSS Cassie worked in a residential care home. Patient double dosed a suppository which "activated" as Cassie helped her into a wheel chair. PERI-RECTAL ABSCESS. Arguably one of the most disgusting creeps of all time
65 20/03/2020 A mad story about a mad (cow) disease, a smooth criminal and an underground mission with hilarious consequences Dan Cooper Hijacked a Boeing 727 aircraft in the northwest of the US; jumps out with thousands of dollars and is never seen again Mad Cow Disease and Doctor Daniel Carleton Gajdusek who goes to "help" Papua New Guinea and turns out ot be a paedophile School boys finds a secret warren under their school... A misadventure ensues
20/03/2020 Creep Live Online #1: A Town of Ticking Teenagers, Serial Turder and Mayhem at The Spa Mystery illness takes over town in North New York Sophie's top 3 getting stuck in toilet stories Woman gets naked and lost in spa
27/03/2020 Creep Live Online #2: The most haunted creep of the year
66 29/03/2020 Crafting conspiracies, cult clans and the game show killer Big Crafting is actually a Russian Propaganda Machine Rodney Alcala serial rapist, killer and gameshow contestant Taina Licciardo-Toivola: Annoying Aryian Cult family on YouTube
67 07/04/2020 The long (penis) and short (life) of your favourite covid meme and the mighty Michael that would not die Michael Malloy, the sturdy Irish fella in New York who proved to be un-murderable (well, almost Wardy Joubert, everyones favourite (well-endowed) naked covid meme (who's dead) Harry offically appointed alpha creep!
68 12/04/2020 More Tiger King, a YouTube Doll Debacle and Did Sophie Find D.B. Cooper? Inspired by recent haunted dolls on the hive, Cassie dives into internet sensation, Venus Angelic The Stars of Tiger King: An Epilogue
69 19/04/2020 Snitches get stitches and when internet comments destroy lives Would you provide an alibi for a loved one? Trevor Hardy - The Beast of Manchester (and his brother) The Inception of FaceBook Commentary: tangled history of internet smear campaign Kelsey Grammar maybe into pegging "It's very unfortunate for the mens. Their G-spot is up their ass hole and they're just going to have to get over it." -Cassie Delaney Eamon Holmes (5G) and the gardaí (posting photos of sun bathers)
70 26/04/2020 In The Shadow of the Truth Lies the Statue of Liberty Bling Water! Your water is dead, you fools Lisa helps Sophie with a follow up to Molly from Sophie's previous creep The Mandela Effect. Are we all in hell/purgatory/multiple dimensions/simulated world This episode has more filler than actual creeps but was no less enjoyable. Sophie, my handle is @Harry_birdboy. Cassie, I'll hug you! Gemma O'Doherty
71 06/05/2020 Shipman the shit man Crimes that happen in the virtual world that cross over into reality and suicide pact community killer Harold Shipman, world's most prolific (and boring) serial killer Gemma O'Doherty again (but she gets owned by Dublin airport on Twitter)
72 12/05/2020 Beta Theta Pi? More like Beta Theta Die and the Glow Up with Deadly Consequences Beta Theta Pi, Penn State University. Hazing ends in death :( Sophie loves horror. Tells the real life story behind Scream. (Impromtu creep!) Radium Girls!
73 19/05/2020 Walk like a reincarnated Egyptian also that time a squirrel ate some guys nuts Dorothy Eady, the reincarnation of an Egyptian priestess.Cassie is mean to her mother Creep Confectionary is now a thing. Sophie seeds the idea for a Toast Podcast. Sophie presents a gaggle of gals cat-fishing some terrorists Man gets balls eaten by squirrels Jen and Sophie want to host their own Most Haunted. Cassie protests, as usual Camilla and Prince Charles talk dirty
74 26/05/2020 Don't anger a Karen, canal creeps and the parents who put the kid in kidnapping Shannon Matthews, Karen Matthews has her own daughter kidnappped while she plays Xbox Belle Gibson update! She is now Oromo (an Ethiopian ethnic minority). Katherine Knight and her human pelt Riding in a tent on the canal
75 02/06/2020 Freezin’ people ain’t easy, the genuinely geriatric mother and the biggest creeps of the week ever The YouTubers that rehomed their son The oldest woman in the world to give birth (oyster woman). 40 year old stone foetus! Jen finally gets to tell her cryogenics story. Multple strands See Cassie
76 09/06/2020 No name, No luggage, No labels, No answers 1.) In a room at the Oslo Plaza Hotel, a young, elegant woman is found dead, with a gun shot wound to the head. Why did she check in under a false name? Why are the labels removed from her clothes? 2) Death in Ice Valley The gals are reunited!
77 16/06/2020 Guilt or grief? The dark story of Casey Anthony Via Reddit/Sarah. Creepy MSN guy and possibly related swindler Casey
78 23/06/2020 Slumber Murders and The OG Moby Dick Sleep killers The OG Moby Dick
25/06/2020 Creep Hive Sophie's Cock Along! Denis Nilsen:ScottishSerial Killer (and middle child)
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2020.08.17 15:07 finnagains The Good Liar: Starring Helen Mirren, Ian McKellen - the consequences of light-mindedness

Directed by Bill Condon, written by Jeffrey Hatcher, based on the novel by Nicholas Searle
Official Trailer (2:18 min)
American film director Bill Condon (born 1955), one critic commented in 2015, “has an eclectic body of work.” His early films, Gods and Monsters (1998) and Kinsey (2004), about British-born director James Whale and US sex researcher Alfred Kinsey, respectively, remain his most interesting efforts. They had a certain oppositional feel (and anger) to them, at least in regard to conventional morality during the Clinton-Bush era.
However, the critic went on, in review of Condon’s Mr. Holmes, the filmmaker “has also written or directed some trivial works, or worse, including Chicago (2002, which he wrote), Dreamgirls (2006), The Twilight Saga (two parts, 2011 and 2012) and, most disgracefully, The Fifth Estate. The latter work, a hatchet job on WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange (played by Benedict Cumberbatch), left a particularly foul taste.”
In a period piece, such as Mr. Holmes, “the director can avoid revealing in so direct a fashion his accommodation to the status quo and the accomplished fact. However, something of his essential conformism on important matters, colors Mr. Holmes. It is not an impressive work.”
Essential conformism on important matters seems an apt summing up of Condon’s film career to date. At any rate, The Good Liar, released last year and now available for streaming, will not do much to change one’s attitude.
The new film ostensibly concerns an aging conman, Roy Courtnay (Ian McKellen), who has his sights set on the considerable life savings of a widow, Betty McLeish (Helen Mirren), a former Oxford history professor.
Courtnay and his partner in crime, Vincent Halloran (Jim Carter), are simultaneously engaged in cheating the greedy, stupid Bryn (Mark Lewis Jones) and an associate (Lucian Msamati) out of several hundred thousand pounds. Roy, in dealings with one of his underlings, who foolishly demands a larger share of the take, and with the aggrieved Bryn, who eventually comes upon and follows Courtnay on a busy London street, proves quite cruel and ruthless.
Roy and Betty become quite close, or so it seems. He easily manipulates her into asking him to stay at her bland suburban home and, without too much further ado, begins suggesting they pool their money and open a joint offshore investment account. Her grandson Steven (Russell Tovey) expresses skepticism about Roy and openly suggests he is only after Betty’s savings.
On a holiday trip that Roy and Betty take to Berlin, things begin to unravel. Steven has discovered that “Roy Courtnay,” a British army officer, was shot and killed in the German capital in 1948 by a wanted Nazi war criminal, who also died in the same incident. Roy then confesses that, yes, he is not Courtnay, but Hans Taub, the British army officer’s translator. He adopted Courtnay’s identity and has been living in Britain since the postwar years under that name. He begs forgiveness, and Betty is happy to oblige.
It is impossible to discuss The Good Liar seriously without giving away its denouement, so the reader needs to be forewarned.
Roy and Halloran go ahead with their end of the swindle, planning to empty the joint investment account of every penny, but Betty, we discover, is way ahead of them.
More than that, much more than that, her real name is Lili Schröder, and she is the daughter of a German businessman.
In 1943, in a flashback, a young Hans Taub (i.e., the present-day “Roy Courtnay,” played by Spike White) is tutoring Lili (Nell Williams) in English. After Lili’s three sisters humiliate him when he tries to kiss one of them, Hans proceeds directly upstairs and rapes Lili. Aware that Hans has done something amiss (although not precisely what), Herr Schröder (Daniel Betts) throws the youth out of the house. The next day, Hans denounces Lili’s father to the Nazi regime as a traitor, who then hang him. In despair, Frau Schröder (Stella Stocker) soon kills herself, and the other Schröder girls later die in an air raid. Betty/Lili has a serious, 70-year-old score to settle, and settle it she does.
The Good Liar imparts all of this startling information in its final moments. It is not very convincing at almost any level. A relatively light-hearted work (with admittedly nasty overtones) about an unsubtle scam (why would a former Oxford professor fall for such a thing?) transforms itself out of the blue into another of the “feminist revenge narratives,” for which, we are told, these are now “boom times.”
The sequences set in Germany in 1943 are the least persuasive. The viewer is asked to believe that Hans-Roy, who does not show signs of psychopathology, rejected when he tries to kiss one girl, cold-bloodedly decides to violate another—in the middle of the day in her highly respectable, upper-middle-class home, with every other member of the large household within shouting distance. One can only draw the conclusion that heterosexual men must be very, very wicked and dangerously out of control.
Condon has made various disclaimers about any link between the #MeToo movement and his latest film, whose production clearly began after October 2017. For example, “There are a lot of ways in which I’ve described The Good Liar in the last four or five years since reading the novel, but timely wasn’t one of them,” Condon told the Hollywood Reporter. In fact, whenever the director may have come upon the novel, an announcement about the teaming up of Condon, McKellen and Mirren on The Good Liar was only made in mid-March 2018, well after the sexual witch-hunt was under way. Shooting began in late April 2018.
“I’m surprised that it’s timely, because we didn’t do anything to make it relevant,” Condon asserted. And furthermore, “There’s a worry that people might think we were exploiting something—that somehow we’d made the whole movie on the heels of that stuff happening and we were using it as a plot point in entertainment.” The comments seem disingenuous.
Screenwriter Jeffrey Hatcher is a little more candid. He told the Hollywood Reporter that The Good Liar was written and filmed “at the height of #MeToo.” Hatcher explained, “You’re writing this and shooting it at that same time, and so there’s a little bit of the current politics that flood into it. … You never want to flood in in such a way that it swamps the film, but you can’t ignore it either.”
The opportunistic jumping on the #MeToo bandwagon, and its bludgeoning of elemental rights is bad enough, but the most harmful aspect of The Good Liar is its implication that an unreported sexual assault is a world-historical event worthy of discussion in the context of the Nazi genocide. In fact, if one were to take the logic of the film seriously, Hans’ action flows into and becomes one with the “other crimes” of the Hitler regime. They exist somehow on the same historical and moral plane.
Moreover, how many films have treated an event in Nazi Germany, whose emergence was the single most catastrophic event of the 20th century, as a mere backdrop for a purely personal episode and the springboard for a purely personal revenge?
Veteran performers like McKellen and Mirren, who are effective throughout, as much as the contrived narrative permits them to be, might be horrified by such a question (Mirren has only recently made a documentary film dedicated to Holocaust victim Anne Frank), but this is what the current dreadful fixation with gender politics leads to. We are confronted with a film in which fascist barbarism is only mentioned, as it were, “in passing,” a mere plot device on which to hang the case of an unreported sexual assault.
The degree of unseriousness and light-mindedness, and social blindness, is staggering.
Nicholas Searle, the author of the novel, is a pen-name for a former British intelligence officer, who—to fill out the picture—completed the book “while studying at a writing school set up by the literary agents Curtis Brown.” Someone will mention novelist John le Carré, but leaving aside the fact that le Carré’s social and foreign policy criticism has definite limitations, “Searle” is no le Carré.
Guardian critic Mark Lawson inadvertently summed up the significance of the novelist’s self-serving lumping together of Hitler’s crimes with sexual abuse and con artistry, which carries over into the film, in his 2016 review of the novel. Lawson, in banal postmodern language, explained that Searle was “far from the first writer to use the art of the confidence trick—‘one big lie is all you ever need’—as a metaphor for the things that governments and individuals do in other circumstances, but these layers of liars add to the impact. A successful novel is also a sort of swindle (making a fiction sound convincing, misleading the reader about where things are going), although with the difference that a good one should provoke a desire to be duped by the same person again.”
In a world where everyone is some sort of liar, the lies—like Hitler’s or, for that matter, George W. Bush’s and Tony Blair’s—that result in the deaths of millions hardly stand out. This cynical notion is not surprising coming from a British civil servant “who spent much of his time working on security matters,” but any serious writer, director or actor should be ashamed to be associated with it.
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2020.08.17 07:46 Palimpsestmc1 What are your favourite Murnane works/clauses/phrases/paragraphs?

This post takes inspiration from following paragraphs of the essay written by Murnane in the Autumn 2016 edition of Meanjin: In Praise of the Long Sentence (
"Towards the end of that period, I was looking through, if not reading, a review in the London Review of Books dated 8 February 1990. The book under review was Vineland, by Thomas Pynchon, and the reviewer was Frank Kermode. His long piece included the following:
Pynchon loves very long sentences, of which this, though not the longest available, is a sample: By the time she began to see that she might, nonetheless, have gone through with it, Brock Vond had reentered the picture, at the head of a small motorcade of unmarked Buicks, forcing her over near Pico and Fairfax, ordering her up against her car, kicking apart her legs and frisking her himself, and before she knew it they were in another motel room, after a while her visits to Sasha dropped off and when she made them she came in reeking with Vond sweat, Vond semen—couldn’t Sasha smell what was going on?—and his erect penis had become the joystick with which, hurtling into the future, she would keep trying to steer among the hazards and obstacles, the swooping monsters and alien projectiles of each game she would come, year by year to stand before, once again out long after curfew…
The passage quoted here is about half the passage quoted by Kermode. I have cut it short to save space. What I’ve quoted is more than enough to illustrate the point that I made in a letter to the editors of the London Review. The letter, which was later published, read in full:
Dear Editors Frank Kermode quotes what he calls a very long sentence from Thomas Pynchon (LRB, 8 Feb, 90). The passage quoted is not a sentence. The passage consists of a sentence of sixty-six words followed by a comma and then a sequence of clauses and phrases that is neither a part of the sentence preceding it nor a sentence in itself."
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2020.08.14 18:18 sweetandsourchicken The In-Depth Primer You've All Been Waiting For (feat. TONS OF RECEIPTS!)

Welcome to SmolBeanSnark. Here is our definitive outline with receipts on Caroline Calloway up until now. Please feel free to add your own favorite moments and receipts in the comments. We will continue to update as needed.
Who the F is Caroline Calloway?
Caroline is originally from suburban Virginia. Despite her family’s clear privilege and wealth, she claims she grew up in emotional poverty. At some point she changes her name from Caroline Gotschall to Caroline Calloway because she thinks the latter “would look better on the cover of a book.”
After high school she apparently spends a year traveling abroad but does not acknowledge the privilege of being able to afford this. Then she goes to NYU and begins her infamous friendship with Natalie. After three years at NYU she flunks out.
She applies to Cambridge three times and was finally accepted as a mature student starting in 2013. She claims that her lack of kneecaps constituted a disability so that she could live in a “nicer” dorm. Here she meets a Swedish polo player named Oscar and starts dating him. She makes money by listing her NYC apartment in the West Village on Airbnb. She gets many complaints that the apartment is absolutely filthy.
She gets minor fame on Instagram for documenting her life at Cambridge as a “Hogwarts-esque” fairytale with longform captions. She blows off classes to travel, goes to a lot of balls, parties, etc. She claims she is the first person to post a crying selfie on Instagram. Also is abusing adderall behind the scenes. Most people at Cambridge seem to not care for her portrayal of the school. She spends a lot of money to lavishly decorate her dorm room.
At some point she gets a book deal based on her Instagram following. The book deal is worth $500K and includes a $150K advance. The book is either titled “Schoolgirl” or “And We Were Like”. She advertises it as AWWL but then changes the narrative later when she gets called out for blowing the deal. She says that Natalie wasn’t her ghostwriter, just a collaborator on the book.
Oscar graduates Cambridge and moves to London. They get a flat in London and she spends outrageous amounts of money on stuff like antique Venetian chandeliers. They get two King Charles Cavalier Spaniel puppies. At one point someone claims they were having a party and the dogs pooped on the comforter, so Caroline just shoved the poopy comforter into the oven and kept partying. Eventually Caroline cheats on Oscar. They break up. The puppies are never seen or mentioned again.
As detailed in Natalie’s essay for The Cut, Caroline continually blows deadlines for the book. Natalie, who wants her share of the money, tries to push through and finish the book and Caroline has a full scale meltdown. After the due date comes and goes, Caroline claims that she didn’t write the book because the publishers wanted it to be about boys and she doesn’t want to write about boys even though her entire Instagram is about her relationships with boys. Some people say she didn’t want to admit that a lot of the stuff she wrote was flat out false. Natalie and Caroline have a huge falling out over this. Caroline starts selling pages of the book proposal on Etsy.
She goes quiet on Instagram for a while but is still active on Facebook and Snapchat. Some people have screenshots of things she was doing during this time. She goes to Italy to “detox” from Adderall. At some point she moves back to NYC.
At some point in 2017, Caroline doxxes Oscar’s new girlfriend because she allegedly made a CC fan account. Oscar messages Caroline and asks her to please stop talking about him and his new girlfriend. She responds that he “doesn’t have custody over their shared memories.”
She dates a guy named Conrad for a while. He’s some kind of travel trust fund guy who just goes around doing whatever he wants. They take a road trip to Nebraska. She promises to tell the story of what happened when she saw her relatives there but never does. She and Conrad tell each other “I love you” after two weeks of dating.
She moves to Seattle with Conrad. People who know him say he wants to break up with her but feels bad because she’s financially dependent on him. Eventually, she wants to move back to NYC and do long distance and they break up. She announces this in a post with her flower crown photo shoot of herself and Rachel Cargle. (Yes, that Rachel Cargle.)
NOW WE GET TO THE JUICY PART: THE SCAM! In December 2018**, Caroline has the idea that she’s going to host a world tour of “Creativity Workshops”. She posts that she’s going to host workshops in NYC, Chicago, Atlanta, Seattle, Austin, London, Amsterdam, and Dubai (among other places). She promises things that would clearly require a lot of work but she thinks will be fine, such as elaborate gift bags and personalized letters to every single participant. She orders an entire pallet of mason jars for the gift bags and doesn’t realize how large it is when the truck pulls up to her studio apartment in the West Village. She starts selling tickets for $165 a piece before she has even booked venues.
She starts to realize she can’t keep some of the promises she’s made. She tells her followers that now instead of personalized letters they’ll get a journal. She promises to “cook salads” for lunch for everyone, then asks if they would mind bringing their own lunches because cooking is hard.
A Scottish journalist, Kayleigh Donaldson, starts a Twitter thread that goes viral about how stupid this workshop idea is and how it’s clearly going to blow up in her face. She writes an article about Caroline and this scam for Pajiba. The Twitter thread goes viral. Caroline hosts her first workshop in Brooklyn and then puts a poll on her story asking if people would want to move all of the other events to Brooklyn. The answer choices are “Yes” and “Yes”.
Media outlets start to pick up on this whole ridiculous mess. Caroline backtracks and cancels her tour. She issues refunds. Then, she has a change of heart and uncancels her tour and also sends out an email asking for people who received refunds to actually pay “whatever they think it was worth.” She ends up doing maybe 3-4 events in NYC, DC, and in Austin.
Over the next few months she: buys a bunch of caterpillars but moves them around so much that they die, constantly posts about “going viral as a scam”, claims to be so broke that she buys a $13 aeperol spritz from a bar near her house every night so she can eat the bread and olives for dinner, posts herself jumping subway turnstiles because she “can’t afford” the $2.75 fare, and accepts Venmo payments from her fans who are worried about her financial situation.
Then begins the era of the “tittays.” She starts making these ugly watercolor paintings of her tits and selling them for $40. Then she realizes it could be a cash cow, ups the price to $80 and produces dozens of these cheap ugly things. Many of her fans buy them. She loves her boobs so much she posts a pic of her tits and tags her middle school as the location. She then immediately books a trip to the UK without shipping anything anyone bought.
She goes to Cambridge and claims she’s doing an “artists’ residency” when she’s really just staying in an Airbnb and walking around during the day. She takes photos of herself in a library and claims she wants to do a shoot for Playboy. She paints watercolors using the water from the River Cam. She takes polaroids of the Cambridge campus that she sells to her followers. She attends a ball and brags about doing coke in a church. She goes on a date with a dude, then when she finds out he’s going to be in NYC the next week she books a flight home. She says she decided to come home because she needs to ship the “Tittay” paintings.
Caroline and the Cambridge dude go to a party together and afterwards he tells her that her style is kitsch and he doesn’t like her enough to kiss her, but if she wants to have sex they can. They have sex and Caroline spends the next day on Instagram implying that he sexually assaulted her before she tells the story of what really happened.
She buys a book about Matisse’s cutouts and gets an idea. She traces Blue Nude IV on to color printed paper, cuts it, pastes it on to other printed paper, and starts selling these for $140 or more a piece. Caroline spends almost all of August spamming these “Dreamer BBs” to her followers. Sometimes selling the same one more than once. Many do not get shipped at all. Others are shipped and followers are disappointed when they arrive crinkled and bent. The Pardon My Snark podcast provides a great collection of screenshots.
In early September she finds out Natalie is going to publish an article about their relationship for The Cut. She posts a lot of crying selfies about how much she loves Natalie and how sorry she is that she hurt Natalie and how “if Natalie said it, it must be true.” This is when we get the infamous open mouth sobbing video where Caroline posts a time-lapsed video of herself gluing dreamer bbs and sobbing, with a quick turn to check herself out in the mirror before continuing.
Two days after the article comes out, Caroline gets the news that her father died. Many snarkers at the time feel very sorry for her and take a break out of respect. Caroline does an interview and a photo shoot with NBC News in which she says that she’s upset that Natalie mentioned her threats of suicide in the article. Later, this narrative changes to Caroline being upset that Natlie “erased her mental illness from the record” in the article.
Caroline does a live interview with the hosts of the Red Scare Podcast in Brooklyn. It… does not go well. She inexplicably touts it as a success anyway. She does a 9-part series of Instagram posts that are supposed to reveal something about Natalie and only gets to part 8. This is never mentioned again.
In a fit of selfriteousness, Caroline declares that she will be a vegan for environmental reasons. She continues to eat plenty of animal products including sardines, cheese, and salmon. When people call her out on this she says she’s allowed to have special treats. After a while, Caroline stops mentioning veganism or environmentalism at all.
In October, Caroline goes out to LA and claims she is taking meetings to make a movie about her life. She says that an A-lister is very interested and she claims she went to this person’s house for tea.She goes on a trip to the desert with a guy she’s dating and makes a post about her dad that is a picture of just her torso in a bikini saying that she is sexual and sexy and grief-stricken. When she leaves LA she says she will be back in a few weeks to finalize some deals. She does not return to LA or mention any movie project after this trip.
Caroline starts a Patreon where she promises exclusive daily story content for her subscribers. The Patreon is $2 a month and she gets a few hundred subscribers. She does a bit of close friends content then stops. Does not stop charging people for her Patreon. At one point she says she’s going to go to clear out her deceased father’s home and she will post that to her Close Friends. Then she gets mad that people would “expect” her to share something so painful with them. She rarely mentions her Patreon after this but despite producing no content, she still accepts $2 a month from hundreds of her fans.
For her 28th birthday, Caroline throws herself a $15,000 party at the Brooklyn Historical Society which she calls a May Ball. Many question the amount she spent on this party considering there was a lien filed against her in late October for failure to pay her rent. Her assistant does the real leg work of the party planning while Caroline spends endless hours painting little place cards for everyone who is invited. People are asked to dress like someone or something from art history. Many guests have cool and creative costumes. Caroline wears a cheap looking dress with visible safety pins and unbrushed hair with flowers that are falling out of it. She looks very wasted in most of the pictures.
After her birthday, Caroline goes to spend time in Florida where she makes crass jokes about masturbating next to her grandmother and thinks it’s revolutionary that she’s both a caring granddaughter and someone who has sex. While in Florida she decides she’s going to write a book about “going viral as a scam.” She says she is staying in Florida until the manuscript is done and it will publish in January on the anniversary of her workshops.
Caroline starts 2020 off by ordering two kittens off the internet. They were “on sale” and she got 2 for $3000. They are to be shipped to Florida in February. She posts about how hard “coding” is while putting together her Shopify site.
Caroline returns to NYC and Scammer goes up for preorder. A snarker did a very good summary of the timeline as Scammer evolves. She does some media rounds about the book but tells the press there will be no advance copies and if they want to review it they’ll have to order it. In late January, she announces that Scammer will ONLY be available by preorder and you won’t be able to get it in stores. She does a few offers where if you buy multiple copies of the book you will get dreamer bbs or hats or whatever. She says she will personally sign every copy of Scammer. By March 1 she says “today is the last day you can buy Scammer.”
Despite increasing global panic about the Coronavirus, Caroline takes a trip to Berlin in early March. She posts a lot about sitting in her Airbnb reading Jessica Simpon’s autobiography. She goes to Berghain in a Corona shirt and meets a guy and they stay up all night talking and having sex while high on molly. She thinks it’s special but the next day he’s kinda done with it and she is clearly upset but trying to act cool about it. She hooks up with a Soundcloud rapper from Twitter and thinks she’s cool because she hooks up with guys with tattoos.
After Berlin, Caroline returns to Florida. Her mother rents her an Airbnb and the cats are there. She is supposed to be in quarantine after returning from Europe but instead she goes to the grocery store because her mom bought the cheap brand of olive oil. At one point she strips the sheets off the bed and then sleeps naked with her cats on the bare mattress. When the two weeks are up, Caroline’s grandmother moves to her mother’s house so Caroline can stay in grandma’s condo.
Caroline says Scammer is ready, but the printers have now closed due to the pandemic, though she never discloses which printer she planned to use. She decides she’s going to write a three-part response essay to Natalie’s essay called “I Am Caroline Calloway”. She puts it on a website ( and puts it behind a paywall. Says anyone who purchased Scammer can read the essays for free. Everyone else is charged $10 and she says she’s going to give all the money to COVID relief. She says she will put one part up every Tuesday for three weeks. After the first part of the essay is posted and is 6,000 words rather than the 15,000 words she promised, she posts a full frontal nude to Twitter as an “apology.” She posts part 2 of the essay and does media rounds about donating $50,000 to COVID relief. Then she waits a few weeks, posts part 2.5, waits a few more weeks and posts “Part 3 Part 1”. The essay is never mentioned again.
The attention high of posting a nude to Twitter goes to Caroline’s head. She starts an OnlyFans account and charges $50 a month. When people ask why her price point is so high, she states that her “cerebral, softcore porn” is unmatched and that she is probably the only OF user with a Cambridge degree. Many established sex workers take this opportunity to dunk on her by posting their hotter, more artistic, and less expensive OF accounts. She also takes this time to tweet an antisemitic meme and pretend she didn’t know it was antisemitic.
During this time, Caroline starts dating a 20-year-old chef she meets from Twitter. At some point he comes to reddit and answers some questions about her including that she’s not really a keeper but he’s having fun. Later, his ex comes to reddit and posts screenshots of him saying he’s not that into Caroline. Caroline tweets that her pussy is so “bomb” that she changed his mind about her.
In June, Caroline posts on her story that she’s taking a break from Scammer because of the BLM uprising. Then she says it will ship at the end of June, but since she can’t sign the copies she will make stickers to come with the books. She posts photos of herself at the post office in a fairy costume at the beginning of July but does not clarify if these are the books or the stickers that she is shipping. In mid-July Scammer is still available for preorder.
Toward the end of June, Caroline does two back-to-back interviews on the same day. The first is an interview with the Cambridge Union in which Caroline insists that her primary income is from OnlyFans, doubles down on a racist Coronavirus meme she posted, and gets mad about communism only to admit she doesn’t really know what communism is. She says the interview went well. Then, she goes on to do Ziwe’s “Baited” show. She says she is the only person to have read James Baldwin’s “If Beale Street Could Talk”, says cancelling someone for a hate crime would be the same thing as a death sentence, calls Layla F. Saad “Layla Safad”, asks for ally cookies, and then asks Ziwe to say something nice about her because her manager is mad that she’s doing this interview. Afterwards, Ziwe gets a lot of positive attention because the interview was such a trainwreck and Caroline pretends she is in on the joke and it went well for her. Eventually she gets called out on Black Twitter and posts crying selfies about a depressive episode which is miraculously gone the next day.
Toward the end of July, a snarker notices that her website now says Scammer will ship August 31st. A week later, Caroline posts that preorders are still available. Another week later she posts a video to her story about how she is “reworking” Scammer because 2019 is no longer the “worst year ever” and now the book is going to be about 2020, despite the fact that she advertised that the book would be about the scam workshop and her father’s passing and the Natalie article.
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A Chip in the Sugar The LRB at 40: Mary-Kay Wilmers, Alan Bennett, Andrew O'Hagan, John Lanchester and Sheng Yun Beyond Jealousy -- Ending Jealousy Permanently (Part 6) London Review of Books (LRB) - YouTube On the Character of Karl Marx (3 of 3) The Making of the London Review of Books - YouTube Hunger makes me a modern girl: Carrie Brownstein, All About Women 2016 A book which can only be read by candlelight, for Halloween...

The charm of London Review of Books' personals

  1. A Chip in the Sugar
  2. The LRB at 40: Mary-Kay Wilmers, Alan Bennett, Andrew O'Hagan, John Lanchester and Sheng Yun
  3. Beyond Jealousy -- Ending Jealousy Permanently (Part 6)
  4. London Review of Books (LRB) - YouTube
  5. On the Character of Karl Marx (3 of 3)
  6. The Making of the London Review of Books - YouTube
  7. Hunger makes me a modern girl: Carrie Brownstein, All About Women 2016
  8. A book which can only be read by candlelight, for Halloween...
  9. Lectures and Events - YouTube
  10. Inside the London Review of Books

London Review Bookshop 15,663 views. ... Carrie Brownstein on 'Hunger Makes Me A Modern Girl' at the 2016 L.A. Times Festival of Books - Duration: 11:02. PBS Books 1,198 views. Follow an issue of the London Review of Books as it travels from the editors' floor to your front door. Read more: ABOUT THE LRB The LR... Since 1979, the London Review of Books has stood up for the tradition of the literary and intellectual essay in English. Each issue contains up to 15 long reviews and essays by academics, writers ... As the London Review of Books celebrates its 40th anniversary, we look back at what paste-up used to involve in the early years of the paper. Flashing her blade is Bryony Dalefield, who has been ... REALITY TV: An Idiot's Guide to Dating – Wisecrack Edition - Duration: 19:32. Wisecrack Recommended for you. 19:32. ... London Review of Books (LRB) Recommended for you. 1:10:45. To celebrate the 40th anniversary of the London Review of Books, and mark the publication of ‘The London Review of Books: An Incomplete History’, the LRB’s editor, Mary-Kay Wilmers, along ... Opened in 2003 by the London Review of Books, it’s a place for people who love books to meet, talk, drink excellent tea and coffee, consume delicious cake, and of course, browse. London Review of Books (LRB) 34,159 views 1:02:37 Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee: 'Just Tell Him You’re The President” (Season 7, Episode 1) - Duration: 19:16. The LRB at 40: Mary-Kay Wilmers, Alan Bennett, Andrew O'Hagan, John Lanchester and Sheng Yun What Dating and Counseling Have to Learn from Each Other - Duration: 8:24. ... London Review of Books (LRB) Recommended for you. 1:11:02. The Witness Meditation - Duration: 9:58.