Mark Grant is always an amusing read and here is his latest missive reposted in all it’s semi-psychedelic glory, for it amused me :

“For him it was a dark passage which led to nowhere, then to nowhere, then again to nowhere, once again to nowhere, always and forever to nowhere, heavy on the elbows in the earth to nowhere, dark, never any end to nowhere, hung on all time always to unknowing nowhere, this time and again for always to nowhere, now not to be borne once again always and to nowhere, now beyond all bearing up, up, up and into nowhere, suddenly, scaldingly, holdingly all nowhere gone and time absolutely still and they were both there, time having stopped and he felt the earth move out and away from under them.”

                  -Ernest Hemingway, “For Whom the Bell Tolls” 

The European Union is leading the nations of Europe nowhere. They have sat there and languished in their own self-adoration, propped up their egos on self-congratulation and flounced recitals of praise fluffed and huffed by one politician and told to another. They have a central bank promising what cannot be delivered and they have used up all of their capital to buy the debt they have created to support the artifice. Then having mutilated the pension funds of their citizens and having pressured every money manager on the Continent they congratulate themselves on their lower yields.

“Yet the first bringer of unwelcome news hath but a losing office, and his tongue sounds ever after as a sullen bell, remembered tolling a departing friend.”

                 -William Shakespeare, “Henry IV”

They say it is improved financial sustainability; I say it is chicanery. They see a road without end; I can see the end. They congratulate themselves; I yawn as the mumbo jumbo continues. The spice must flow and so it does but they are now consuming more than is being produced and I can smell the coming storm and the signs of the forthcoming giant sandworm abound.

“When religion and politics travel in the same cart, the riders believe nothing can stand in their way. Their movements become headlong – faster and faster and faster. They put aside all thoughts of obstacles and forget the precipice does not show itself to the man in a blind rush until it’s too late.”

                 -Frank Herbert, “Dune”

They honey is the ability to trade with each other. The vinegar is the cauterization if anyone leaves. Germany prospers. Everyone else suffers. The unemployment rate hits 12.2% which is a concocted number far below actuality but that is what they say, that is what is believed, but our old friend reality always has a funny way of showing up when you least expect him.

In France they now have 3.26 million unemployed with two uninterrupted years of monthly rises in their unemployment rate and a 1.2% increase from March. Nearly 337,000 more people are out of work in France than there were when Hollande was elected in May 2012. Unemployment is Spain at 26.8%, some 6.2 million people out of work while the economy has shrunk -1.3% in the last two quarters. Italy’s economy is projected to shrink by -1.8% this year according to the OECD while their unemployment rate hits 12%, a thirty-six year high. Besides Germany these are the pillars of the European Union and that union is crumbling.

Stick your nose up into the wind.


The stench is overwhelming.

“At the great iron gate of the churchyard he stopped and looked in. He looked up at the high tower spectrally resisting the wind, and he looked round at the white tombstones, like enough to the dead in their winding-sheets, and he counted the nine tolls of the clock-bell.”

             -Charles Dickens, “Our Mutual Friend”

For those who may be wondering what happened to The Wasp – he is here but utterly dismayed by UK politics and the constant stream of piffle and hot air that is the UK. Other priorities need attention currently but I am not going away be assured.

In the mean time, another one of my favourite Grant lines :

A fool-proof method for sculpting an elephant:

First, get a huge block of marble; then you chip away everything that doesn’t look like an elephant.

Man the chisels!