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mercredi 27 avril 2016

Politics that didn't Happen

As was widely reported in recent newstories, the U.S. army has destroyed several hundred million dollars of Daesh funds with their favorite method of conflict resolution, namely bombing the shit out of it. However, the destruction of U.S. currency is illegal under U.S. law, and, as was verified after the bombings, ISIS had a lot of their cash-reserves in actual dollar-bills. As soon as this became public knowledge, several prosecutors in the U.S. filed charges against the army. Within weeks, the U.S. was aflame with debate over the physical destruction of U.S. currency held by "enemy organisations".
The actual case is pending at the supreme court as of now, but Daesh has already prepared for a favourable outcome, equipping both their vehicles and their fighters with dollar-suits. As one of their leaders put it: "If they are taking this all the way to the supreme court when it's done by their army, you can be sure that they'll sue anybody else who does it."

vendredi 22 avril 2016


The year was 1999, and somehow we all knew there wasn't going to be another one quite like it for at least a thousand years. I had gotten into an accident a couple days ago, 'cause I was going too fast, and might have fallen asleep at the wheel. So my little red corvette was in the shop, which sucked. I loved that car.
And to make things worse, the shock of the accident had left me with a high fever, and I spent two days being completely delirious, pretending to be married to my living room. All in all, it was a rather strange experience.
Anyway, I had to go out tonight for a session of dance, music, sex, romance with a couple friends. So I rented a car, some shitty automatic pile of garbage. But it got the job done, and I met up with my pals outside the disco two hours later. They were already in party mood. John didn't stop saying that there had to be something in the water, and the way he acted, you had to believe him. The dude was high as fuck.
The owner was in a good mood that night, and gave us a couple drinks for free, which was a nice gesture, but meant I had to grab a taxi to get home. The lady cab driver asked me where to, and it took me a while to answer. “New York!” I said after a few seconds.
“New York?”, she asked, bemused.
“Yeah girl. All the critics love U over there. Sounds like the place to be.”
“That's gonna be a long drive...”
“Not to worry, darling. I'll find us something to do with our time. Did I tell you that I'm an international lover?”

mercredi 20 avril 2016

Politics that didn't Happen

In early 2016, US congress passed a bill that allowed relatives of the victimes of the 9/11 attacks to sue Saudi-Arabia. This, of course, put a strain on US-Saudi relationships, but it was nothing that a couple oil deals couldn't smooth over. It did, however, open the door to a whole new category of lawsuits.
Since Saudi-Arabia could be held, at least in part, responsible for the 9/11 attacks, this meant that other countries, too, could be held responsible for terrorist acts that were committed by its citizens, or planned on its soil. And it wasn't long before french citizens launched a lawsuit against Belgium.
The belgians thought that they, too, should be awarded some form of compensation, and sued their own government. After that, all hell broke loose.
Governments started suing each other, people sued the families of both those responsible for attacks, and those present at the attack but who got away unhurt, because they could have taken the place of their loved ones, and might have avoided doing so by "treachery or deceit", as was written in one filing.
Of course, not wanting to get left behind, Daesh, Al-Quaeda and others started suing too, mainly on the ground that lax security had permitted their members to become criminals and live in infamy, and also get sued a lot, something for which they wanted compensation from the governments responsible. It did not take long for wars to turn into legal battles. And once the lawyers took over, things really started to get ugly.

lundi 18 avril 2016

vendredi 15 avril 2016


It's amazing how you sometimes see the right things at the right time. The other day, I was walking through the grey mass of concrete that is downtown. The sky was overcast, and a few raindrops timidly made the journey from the clouds overhead down to earth. It was one of those days were the dreariness of modern life hits you full face, the clouds and the buildings merging into one big monotonous blob. Even the violent proof of life that real rain would have given the scene was denied. And with each step I took, the realization that we were being stripped, slowly but surely, of anything real, of anything tangible that could be found in life, sunk in a little bit further. And just before the depression set in for real, I saw it.
Up in the corner of one of the buildings sprouting from a clogged-up rain gutter, was a bright yellow flower. Because no matter how much you try to hide it, and no matter how much you try to make people forget about it, the beauty of life will never vanish.

mercredi 13 avril 2016

Politics that didn't Happen

In early 2016, Jan Böhmermann, a german comedian, took it up on himself to demonstrate the difference between satire and vulgar insults by giving an example of the latter, reciting a poem he had written about turkish president Erdogan. The turkish president did not appreciate the act, and wanted to press criminal charges. After a few weeks of debate and internet memes, Angela Merkel caved, and allowed Erdogan to prosecute the comedian under an old "Lèse-majesté" law. And as one, the heads of state of other European countries cried outrage.
"It cannot be", said David Cameron, "that in a modern, western democracy, comics are prosecuted for insulting the turkish president, when everybody that made fun of me never even got a fine!" French president François Hollande went even further, pointing out that "after the tragic events a year ago regarding Charlie Hebdo, it should be clear to anybody that satire is dangerous, and should only be used to mock enemies of the state. The fact that such a powerful and deadly weapon has been directed at the president of an allied country is an affront, and the fact that when its him, they press charges, but when its me, they just laugh, is even worse. #JeSuisErdogan"
As events unfolded, more and more people in high offices complained that they, too, wanted to press charges against a couple of people who had made fun of them, and soon changes in the law followed to make this possible. When asked about his opinion on the matter, one of the prosecuted comedians had this to say:
"It is with great joy that I have been following the recent developments in Europe regarding satire. We have tried to educate the general public, but also our elected officials, on the concept of irony and sarcasm for years. To see now that they have not only grasped the gist of it, but are actively applying it in government, fills me with pride. Either that, or they really are a bunch of freaking morons."
He was later sentenced to ten years of solitary confinment.

lundi 11 avril 2016

Citations that weren't Made

"Spring is when you start to remember that office work sucks."

    - John Lennon

vendredi 8 avril 2016

Treasure Hunt

The forest was waking up. Spring had come, and wildflowers vied for a spot in the sunlight with the new spruces of bush and tree. They had to be fast, because in only a few weeks, abundant foliage will cover the ground in shadows. But of course, I wasn't here for the flowers. Somehow, I never am.
There was treasure in the ground in these parts, or so they said. Looking through the mush of dead leaves and decomposing wood, pushing aside the undergrowth with inconsiderate force, I kept on searching for the gold.
Not real gold of course. I was looking for the metaphorical kind. Which, not being subject to market fluctuations, always seemed the safer investment to me.

mercredi 6 avril 2016

Politics that didn't Happen

The big story this week is, of course, the Panama Papers. More than eleven million documents showing how the rich and powerful (or, to be precise, up to now, mostly the rich and powerful from non-western countries) have hidden their assets in offshore companies to avoid taxes, sanctions, and simply to distance themselves from shady businesses. The problem, however, is of course that, although shady, dishonest, and, if you're feeling patriotic, disloyal, most of those actions where still more or less legal. But the politicians of the west where taking action fast.
While still ahead, big speeches were made, new laws were enacted, and tax reform swept through the western world like a storm. Regimes which were (publicly) implicated in the leak were condemned, new sanctions where implemented, and the metaphorical rug rose a few inches. Because after all, the best way to avoid being caught is to make the rules yourself.

lundi 4 avril 2016

vendredi 1 avril 2016


There ain't nothing quite like it. Soft sunshine and a cool breeze. Blue skies and white clouds. Sandy beaches with big waves. It's amazing how big the little things can get if you let them. The tiniest detail turns into the crux of the whole story, and suddenly everything falls into place around it. The world's crazy like that, sometimes.
Mike wasn't really the philosophical type, but right now he felt like thinking about this kind of stuff. It could help you sort things out. Or maybe it was just one of those times where you needed to put the important stuff on the backburner, and let it simmer for a while. See how the flavour would change. The important thing was to take it off the flame again before it burned.