David Thompson


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October 11, 2012



Just spotted this. One of Zombie’s commenters takes this quote of Marx, appropriated by Occupy, and rephrases it more honestly: “To me, according to my wants.”


thinking about Gender Issues, as it were, once every seven seconds

The words 'Laurie Penny' popped into my head.


Communist utopias are remarkedly consistent in reversing certain policies once they achieved power. Capital punishment and workers rights spring to mind.

Robert Conquest is excellent on this but I'll quote Wikipedia today

In real terms, the workers' standards of living tended to drop, rather than rise during the industrialization. Stalin's laws to "tighten work discipline" made the situation worse: e.g., a 1932 change to the RSFSR labor law code enabled firing workers who had been absent without a reason from the work place for just one day. Being fired accordingly meant losing "the right to use ration and commodity cards" as well as the "loss of the right to use an apartment″ and even blacklisted for new employment which altogether meant a threat of starving.[2] Those measures, however, were not fully enforced, as managers often desperately needed to hire new workers. In contrast, the 1938 legislation, which introduced labor books, followed by major revisions of the labor law, were enforced. For example, being absent or even 20 minutes late were grounds for becoming fired; managers who failed to enforce these laws faced criminal prosecution. Later, the Decree of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet, 26 June 1940 "On the Transfer to the Eight-Hour Working Day, the Seven-day Work Week, and on the Prohibition of Unauthorized Departure by Laborers and Office Workers from Factories and Offices"[3] replaced the 1938 revisions with obligatory criminal penalties for quitting a job (2–4 months imprisonment), for being late 20 minutes (6 months of probation and pay confiscation of 25 per cent), etc.



It’s almost as if they hadn’t thought it through.


“The words ‘Laurie Penny’ popped into my head.”

Yes, she’s a textbook example of the kind of mannered fretting Ace is talking about. As noted previously, it’s very often a positioning exercise, a way to establish one’s credentials within a likeminded group. It’s about signalling that one is aware of some incredibly rarefied and unverifiable form of oppression that other people – lesser people – can’t see. And the less the statement refers to reality, the more statusful the speaker is (or imagines themselves to be). It can get quite competitive. And, needless to say, inadvertently comical.


"thinking about Gender Issues, as it were, once every seven seconds

The words 'Laurie Penny' popped into my head."

I, on the other hand, would prefer to think about Ms Penny about once every seven years. And even then, only when I feel sickly.


My quip: Occupy should change it's name to "Loiter".


Perhaps this woman believes she is being intellectual when she tosses off these bon mots.

David Gillies

In the Workers' Paradise that was the Soviet Union, wage differentials between labourers and foremen were frequently higher than in the West.


The Che-shirt twit should have Zenit or Praktica, not Nikon on his strap.

On the other hand, come to think: Che himself used Leica (or was it Zeiss Contax) extensively, and was shot with Rolex on his hand, not Ruhla or Poljot.


Anarcho-Laziness: the right to avoid employment…

The right to make other people pay for everything you want.


A fascinating essay by Ace but in the end I'm not sure why he'd bother. So the photo shows a woman receiving a kiss from a man that turns out to be unsolicited and unwanted; interesting historical snippet, worth knowing, I'd say. If Ace thinks it's silly after all this time to be writing up a feminist rant and calling it 'sexual assault', well maybe he'd prefer to call it 'unchivalrous behaviour' or 'unmanly behaviour' or, 'not something a gentleman ought to do', or simply, 'impolite'. In the end it's a puzzling post - as if he's been turning his general line of thought over in his head for a while, and just found a convenient story to tag it onto, as a piece of comment.

Personally, I am endlessly trivial. I think most people are - just the things they are trivial about tend to vary.

Spiny Norman

Slacker Marxism threatens to shake the world. Or it would do, I’m sure, if anyone could be arsed...

Are these real-life Beavis & Buttheads followers of the Church of the Subgenius?

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