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Old 07.09.2013, 15:19   #466
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OBSERVATIONS
*************************
Loyalty or subservience to the leadership
is not a definition of patriotism but of fascism.
*
The only good thing about life is that
it is above ground.
*
Sometimes we forget that Assad sits
on a “throne of blood,” like Macbeth,
and reality is catching up with him
as it tends todo sooner or later with all of us.
*
If someone whose judgment I don't trust
were to agree with me,
I would disagree with myself.
*
Andrea De Carlo: "He tells me to follow my instinct.
But what if I have two of them?"
#
PROVERBS
***************************
If you like proverbs you will love
THE DICTIONARY OF MODERN PROVERBS
Compiled by C, Doyle, W. Mieder & F.R. Shapiro
(London: Yale University Press, 2012).
Some samples follow:
*
“The best man for the job
may be a woman.”
*
“If you aren’t the lead dog,
the scenery never changes.”
*
“Life is a **** sandwich:
the more bread you have,
the less **** you eat.”
#
SPEAKING OF OBAMA
**********************************
Next time you speak of Obama, ask yourself:
Would Romney have been a better choice?
*
To brainwash children means to train them
to say “Yes, sir!” instead of “Hell, no!”
*
Cherish your enemies,
you may learn more from them
than from your friends.
*
Our most dangerous enemy is not the Turk
but the Turk within us.
*
I find it very difficult to love my fellow men
after reading my morning paper.
#
NOBODY’S PERFECT
********************************
Whenever I am told “Nobody’s perfect”
(meaning “Shut the f*ck up!”) I say:
“Dzour nesdink, shidag khossink.”
In other words: our own imperfections
should not prevent us from discussing
our own motherf*ckers.
*
My contempt for loud-mouth Armenians from the Levant
is not mine but that of a Levantine elder statesmen
who once told me:
“They walk past an elementary school
and brag about their university degrees.”
*
Neither is my antipathy for Islam mine
but that of Sunnis and Shias
for one another.
*
You cannot deceive God,
not even a non-existent God
because God is another word for Reality.
*
The right word at the right time
can be as effective as a hammer-blow to the head.
#
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Old 11.09.2013, 14:58   #467
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CONFESSION (XXII)
*************************
Since I have no political ambitions
I don’t mind admitting that
I have been wrong most of my life
and I am probably wrong today.
If to be right means to kill someone
I’d much rather be wrong.
*
My favorite illusion:
As human being most people are equipped
to see the light of reason.
*
Addicts of the blame-game
refuse to believe that we have played a key role
in our history and we continue to do so today.
*
Anonymous: “History does not repeat itself,
but it rhymes.”
#
WORSE THAN A CRIME
*************************************
A friend of mine once wrote a book
titled AS OTHERS SEE US
but was careful to quote and discuss
mostly friendly witnesses.
*
I committed a worse blunder:
I wrote a book on Armenian history
from which I excluded anything
that may be remotely classified as negative;
and what’s even more repellent to me now,
I never thought of what I was writing
as propaganda. Like all idiots and dupes
I believed it was my patriotic duty
to treat my readers as idiots and dupes.
*
Assad’s crime we are told is using poison gas
to kill his own people.
What we are not told is that
his blunder consisted in having made no effort
to reconcile and unite his fragmented nation.
*
I think it was Talleyrand who once said to Napoleon:
“It was worse than a crime, Sire, it was a blunder.”
#
ON TEXTBOOKS
*********************************
There is one past but there are
ten thousand historians.
*
ON THE STUDY OF HISTORY
*********************************
There are two basic approaches to the study of history:
objective and hysterical.
*
FROM AN OBJECTIVE STUDY
OF ARMENIAN HISTORY
***********************************
We were divided by Turks;
we were divided by Bolsheviks;
and we are now being divided by our own
Ottomanized, Stalinized, and moronized bureaucraps (sic).
*
FROM A TEXTBOOK
ON POLITICAL SCIENCE AND DIPLOMACY
**************************************************
Never fight your enemies if you can divide them.
Remember the Armenians.
*
FROM A TEXTBOOK
ON BRAINWASHING
*******************************
After you moronize them
you can even convince them to be
just about the smartest people on earth.
#
DISAGREEMENTS
*********************************
Many readers disagree with me.
That does not surprise me in the least.
In human affairs disagreement is the rule
rather than the exception.
*
Lawyers and politicians disagree all the time;
so do bishops and imams; and in our case
bishops (Etchmiadznagan) and bishops (Anteliassagan).
*
More often than not however,
disagreements are rooted not in ideas
but in sources of income, or power and prestige.
We live in a world where ideas have become
as relevant as the song of a non-existent bird
in an imaginary forest.
*
Speaking of our ruling classes,
and more specifically our neo-commissars
and crypto-Panchoonies: they have discovered
a new way of dealing with their critics:
they refuse to acknowledge their existence;
and it seems to work provided of course
you ignore the high assimilation rate in the Diaspora
and the exodus in the Homeland.
Criticizing them might as well be an exercise in futility;
and exposing their would be like trying to kill a man
who is committing suicide.
#
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Old 14.09.2013, 15:35   #468
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ORSON WELLES SPEAKS
************************************
He hated the Irish, beginning with Spencer Tracy.
In his recently published CONVERSATIONS he explains:
“Seven hundred years of bitter oppression
changed their character, gave them
that passive meanness and cunning.”
*
By contrast, he loved Hungarians:
“I love Hungarians to the point of sex!
I almost get a hard-on when I hear a Hungarian accent;
I am so crazy about them.”
*
On Israelis: “The only time they make good music
is when Zubin Mehta, a Hindu, comes to conduct.”
*
On Coppola: “THE GODFATHER is the glorification
of a bunch of bums who never existed.”
*
More to follow….
#
ORSON WELLES SPEAKS (II)
******************************************
On intellectuals:
“They are the biggest pushovers.
They love power.
They cluster around whatever golden boy,
or man, is in power and begin to justify it.”
*
On writers:
“I don’t like Dostoevsky.
Tolstoy is my writer.
Gogol is my writer.
I’m not a Joyce guy…”
*
On women:
“They are another race.
You can’t tell them the truth.
You have to lie.”
*
On Russians:
“They have terrible taste.
They are a people of genius;
and they are very literal.
They are ‘machine-made.’
Poor people.”
*
On American journalists: ‘
“Cock****ers with typewriters.”
*
On Laurence Olivier:
“He was so in love with his own image
it was terribly hard for him
to resist going down on himself.”
#
ONCE BRAINWASHED
ALWAYS BRAINWASHED
*********************************************
That’s the only way to explain why so far
Christians have failed to convert Muslims
and vice versa.
*
Both bishops and imams agree that
when it comes to brainwashing
children are more receptive candidates;
and what’s even more outrageous,
they call it education.
*
The overwhelming majority of people
are born, live, and die as dupes.
*
I judge the importance of a book
by the number of prejudices and preconceptions
it exposes and shatters beyond repair.
*
An honest Christian will be honest
only in the eyes of his co-religionists.
An honest infidel or hetanos is an oxymoron.
*
An Armenian has no use for writers.
He is a man of action who understands everything
and knows nothing – or is it the other way around?
#
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Old 18.09.2013, 15:06   #469
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ON SERMONIZERS
******************************
Where preaching to the converted
has become a profitable enterprise,
exposing lies will be seen as a criminal offence.
*
ACKNOWLEDGEMENT
***********************************
I thank my fellow Armenians
for allowing me to live.
*
AMERICAN SAYING
*****************************
“It is not enough for a gardener to love flowers;
he must hate weeds.”
*
HEROES
******************
Nations that are perennial losers
brag about their many heroes.
*
ORSON WELLES SPEAKS (III)
***********************************
On Kissinger:
“A selfish, self-serving ****.”
*
On the Cannes Film Festival
********************************
“Anybody connected with it is a crook.”
*
On himself
*******************
“I am a hypocrite. A sellout.”
#
WHAT IS LITERATURE
********************************
There are benefits to being a minor writer:
you write with greater freedom
because you are not yet slave to your reputation.
Saroyan failed because of his early success.
*
When I write I don’t think of readers.
I don’t allow them to dictate the direction of my thoughts.
As for those who disagree with me:
I will be more than happy to listen to them
provided they identify themselves as investigative reporters.
*
I am as capable of recycling propaganda or chauvinist crap
as the best of them. You want proof?
Read my first dozen books.
*
A famous French writer once said
literature consists in making **** look like rose jam.
*
He who speaks of gods speaks of false gods;
and he who speaks of false gods, speaks of thirsty gods –
thirsty for blood.
Who said that?
I don’t know.
I am not here to assert originality of thought
but to make sense; and if a sentence makes sense
it must have been said before.
*
It has also been said that man cannot create
a single worm but he has created ten thousand gods.
Now, replace the word “gods” with reality,
or even better, Reality, and I dare anyone to say
his Reality is more real than my Reality.
#
CONSIDER THE SYRIANS
********************************
Old age is not always synonymous with wisdom.
Syrians are much older than Americans.
If they go on killing one another it may be because
they know something Americans don’t know –
a knowledge that so far they have failed to share
with the rest of mankind.
They only say the rebels are terrorists.
Who is a terrorist?
Anyone who is willing to kill innocent civilians,
including women and children,
for a self-assessed “noble” cause.
Nothing further, your Honor!
*
ON CHAUVINISM
**************************
Write a short story about an Armenian so patriotic that
he believes the real inventor of the Molotov cocktail
was Mikoyan.
*
ON MODERN ART
**************************
Is modern art a gigantic hoax?
Some art critics think so.
One of them has even written a book
titled TO HELL WITH PICASSO.
And now consider Leonardo, Michelangelo,
and Piero della Francesca:
Has anyone ever dared to question their integrity?
*
CRITICS
******************
To those of my readers who classify me
as a “self-hating Armenian,” I say,
I am more than willing to concede that
I see nothing questionable in loathing anyone
– including myself – who rejects all ideas
that may question his status as a lovable human being.
#
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Old 02.10.2013, 15:19   #470
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INSPIRATION
**********
The eternal snow of Mt. Ararat .
Nightingales serenading the moon.
I leave these things to our versifiers.
The written word is my main source of inspiration.
When I agree with something,
I compose a variation.
When I disagree,
I improvise a contradiction.
When I read an irresistible passage,
I quote it.
I love to quote.
i love to read books of quotations.
So much so that I have myself compiled two of them:
one published (A DICITIONARY OF ARMENIAN QUOTATIONS),
the other (much more extensive) in manuscript form.
*
As for originality:
How much of Plato is Socrates?
How much Socrates owes to the pre-Socratics
most of whose works have survived, if at all, in fragments.
*
It was Hemingway who once said:
“Minor writers plagiarize. Major writers steal.”
And sure enough, at one time or another all major writers
have been accused of being plagiarists –
Sartre, Garcia Marquez, Toynbee, Zarian...
*
Toynbee once described himself as someone
who moves old furniture around.
Garcia Marquez’s style has been traced back
to the 1001 ARABIAN NIGHTS and Faulkner.
An American academic, Stern by name
(that’s the only thing I remember about him)
once wrote a book in which he traced all of Sartre’s ideas
to predecessors.
It was Oshagan who accused Zarian.
Need i say more?....
#
TWO GERMAN PHILOSOPHERS
**********
On Nietzsche:
When asked what he thought of Nietzsche,
Jules Renard is said to have replied:
"There are too many useless letters in his name."
*
On Heidegger:
The son-of-a-bitch was a Nazi
who fell in love with one of his students
who happened to be a Jewess.
*
LOATHSOME IMBECILES
**********
In his THE ITALIANS, Luigi Barzini writes:
"There comes a day in every man's life
when he realizes his leaders are loathsome imbeciles."
*
COUNTER-PROPAGANDA
**********
I repeat myself because I write counter-propaganda.
If propaganda repeats itself, what choice do I have?
#
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Old 09.10.2013, 19:26   #471
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FREEDOM
*************************
Everyone speaks of freedom of religion
as if it were a good thing,
a mark of progress and civilization.
What if what will civilize the world
is not freedom of religion
but freedom of dissent and heresy?
But as long as rabbis, bishops and imams
are allowed the freedom
to poison the minds of children
we will have wars and massacres.
*
Why is this so difficult to understand?
Empires decline and fall
not when its prostitutes, pimps,
thieves and degenerates prosper
but when its spiritually superior individuals
(self-assessed of course) assume leadership positions.
*
Moral I: Freedom of religion is freedom to enslave.
*
Moral II: Freedom to brainwash children
is a crime against humanity.
#
JAGADAKIR
**************************************
We have a school of thought that says
Christianity was a bad choice for us.
We should have converted to Islam.
The unmistakable implication being,
since we cannot change the past,
we cannot change our present and future.
What’s done is done and it cannot be undone.
It is our jagadakir (destiny) therefore
to remain perennial losers.
Let us therefore, in legal parlance,
drop our pants and bend over to whoever is on top –
be he a shah, pasha, padishah, sultan or commissar.
*
But I maintain our problem is not our choice of religion.
Our problem is ignorance of the world,
divisiveness, corruption, incompetence, treason,
and intolerance of any idea
that may shatter our image as la crème de la crème
and expose us as la crème de la scum.
#
IN BRIEF
************************
On our present situation:
Losers at the mercy of other losers.
*
SWINE
******************
The 1% are cold-blooded swine
who think they will not burn in hell
because hell is their own invention.
*
KNOWN UNKNOWNS
************************************
We know that Sultan Abdulhamid II’s mother
was Armenian. We also know that Talaat himself
was probably part-Armenian.
What we don’t know is
how many of our own present leaders are Turks.
*
INTERNET
***************************
Is the Internet making us smarter or dumber?
I don’t know. All I know is that
if an ape uses it he will not be born-again
as a human being.
*
ON ASSAD
**********************
Tina Brown on Bashar-al-Assad:
“A creepy, lisping, giraffe-necked liar.”
*
LOLITA
**********************
I don’t read and reread LOLITA
to be enlightened or instructed.
I read it because it is compulsively readable –
from the first (“fire of my loins”)
to the last sentence.
#
NOTES & COMMENTS
**************************************
There is a general in every solider
(according to Napoleon),
a pope in every seminarian,
a master in every slave,
a capitalist in every proletarian,
and (according to a schoolteacher)
a Turk in every Armenian.
*
Nothing disarms a man
with a highly developed spirit of contradiction
than agreement.
*
We read so many obituaries
and hear of so many deaths when we are alive
that we end up thinking of ourselves
almost as immortal.
#
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Old 12.10.2013, 16:56   #472
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THE STORY OF MY LIFE

**********************************************

One way to get acquainted with life

and with one’s fellow men is to work

for minimum wage under individuals

you would do your utmost to avoid

if given the choice.

*

WE ARE TOLD

******************************

There will come a time

when the lion will lie down with the lamb

and the Armenian with the Armenian,

but I doubt if I will live long enough to see it.

*

We are also told our political parties

play an essential role

in the preservation of our identity

as Armenians in the Diaspora;

the implication being our partisans

are dedicated and selfless servants

of the community

and men of honor.

*

“MEN OF HONOR”

*******************************

That’s how members of the mafia identify themselves,

as “men of honor.”

What did you expect them to say? –

that they are a gang of blackmailers, thieves, and murderers?

#

ON SUBSERVIENCE

********************************

It is said of Goethe and Beethoven that

they were once taking a walk in a park

when they ran into a family of aristocrats.

Whereas Goethe bowed down deeply

as a sign of respect, Beethoven plowed on

with the comment:

“There are so many of them, and so few of us!”

*

My question:

If subservience can penetrate the mighty brain

of an intellectual giant like Goethe,

what chance do the rest of us have

after long centuries of systematic indoctrination,

and brutal intimidation by the likes of Sultans and Stalin?

#

HABEMUS PAPAM!

***********************************

“Everything you have been saying about Armenians is wrong,”

a reader tells me, and goes onto inform me

he has discovered the root of all our problems.

*

OBSERVATION

****************************

Our bosses, bishops and benefactors tend to behave as though they were not part of history, they live outside space and time, the law of gravity does not apply to them, and their actions don’t have consequences; and armed with that conviction they continue to bankrupt the nation with a clear conscience.

*

COMMENT

******************

You can’t adopt a propaganda line and pretend to be an honest man.

*

REFLECTION

*************************

If only I could solve my own problems as easily as I solve the world’s problems!

#
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Old 16.10.2013, 15:01   #473
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THE BOTTOM LINE
****************************************
Our problems were thrust on us by others. We reject their solutions on our own.
*
Only the rotten succeed in a corrupt environment.
*
The greater the political control of schools, libraries, newspapers, community centers and churches, the greater the number of yes-men and dupes.
*
The challenge is to speak of serious things without taking oneself seriously; to be critical of others and even more critical of ourselves.
*
In a totalitarian environment to say your ambition is to succeed as a writer is like saying as a virgin it is your ambition to be a bordello madam.
*
When wolves are in charge, sheep will be useful only as lunch.
#
ORWELL SPEAKS
********************************
In one of his essays
George Orwell speaks of
“the corrosive digestive juices
of the British imperial leviathan.”
You may now have a better understanding
of the depths of our own degradation.
*
Elsewhere he speaks of
“the smelly little orthodoxies
contending for our souls.”
#
FROM MY NOTEBOOKS
******************************************
There is an old saying:
“When you’re down, the only way is up.”
Like all rules this one too has its exceptions:
Armenians.
*
The Greek jury that condemned Socrates to death;
the men who crucified Christ;
the solitary Hindu who assassinated Gandhi:
they all shared one thing in common:
they were brainwashed to believe
the gods, truth, and historic necessity were on their side.
*
If you brainwash children to believe
in the myth of the Holy Trinity,
they will be inclined to believe in many other trinities
like liberté, fraternité, egalité;
thesis, anti-thesis, synthesis;
Marx, Engels, Lenin…
*
A nation that hates together stays together.
*
Judge a tree by its fruit and a propaganda line
by the number of its victims.
*
I quote to enhance my credibility.
What the hell does an Armenian scribbler know?
An odar author, that’s different.
Prof. Hamalian on Zarian,
after reading my translations:
“He writes like one of my bright students.”
*
Academics: they all proceed from the assumption
that they know better.
Question: With over a thousand Armenian academics
in America alone, why is it that our collective existence
is in such a mess?
#
I COULD BE WRONG
***************************************
Certainties are the source of all evil.
But I could be wrong…
*
Has anyone ever said
I could be wrong
but let’s divide the community anyway?
Or, I could be wrong
but let’s go to war …
*
To some a belief system is nothing
but a source of income and power.
*
Where there are idols
there are idol-makers.
Where there are dupes
there are deceivers.
I think it was Luther who said:
“The God of Christians (meaning Catholics)
is an idol.”
*
What is patriotism?
In theory, love of God and Country.
In practice, to brainwash children
and manipulate adults.
*
We should teach our children to say
“I could be wrong.”
*
Socrates was condemned to death
because he spoke in defense of doubt and uncertainty.
“Of the gods,” said he, “we know nothing!”
#
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Old 23.10.2013, 14:59   #474
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TO KNOW IS TO REMEMBER
******************************************
To write also means to repeat
what has been said and forgotten;
to shout that which is whispered;
and to expose that which is covered up.
As for solutions to our problems:
I can only say and repeat:
solutions, like the Kingdom of God,
are within you.
*
Be honest with yourself and others
even when to be honest means
to be outnumbered a thousand to one.
*
Thou shalt not deceive yourself,
especially when the deception is disguised
as tradition, the laws of the land,
or the word of a king, pope, or
some other phony representative of god on earth:
in short, propaganda.
*
If belief systems don’t tell us
not to be dupes of propaganda
it may be because that would be like
digging their own graves.
But I maintain being a dupe
is one of the most dangerous transgressions.
Wars and massacres are perpetrated
by dupes whose sole justification has been,
“I was following orders,” or
I trusted the word of god as spoken
by a rabbi, imam, or bishop.
#
BIG BROTHERS,
AMONG OTHER THINGS
********************************
The Russians are our Big Brothers
only in the sense that for 600 years
Turks were our Big Brothers.
So was Cain to Abel.
*
When you are young
you pull up your pants
and go wherever you want to go.
But when you are old
someone else pulls up your pants
and takes you where you don’t want to go.
I am now paraphrasing the Bible
which may suggest it is not the Word of God
but of men with a credibility problem.
*
Lies that flatter are infinitely more dangerous
than mad dogs, venomous snakes, and mad elephants.
#
HOLIER-THAN-THOU
**************************************
There is a type of holier-than-thou reader
who likes to point out the fact that
my criticism of Armenians is nothing
but a projection of my own shortcomings.
Such a reader is convinced he knows better
because he is better.
His unspoken aim is not to understand reality
but to explain it in such a way
as to prove his moral and intellectual superiority;
and to prove it to others
in order to convince himself.
#
MEIN KAMPF
*********************************
All my efforts are now concentrated
on being readable. As for saving the nation:
I leave that to our bosses, bishops, benefactors
and dime-a-dozen superpatriots
with messianic ambitions.
*
ON SERMONIZERS AND SPEECHIFIERS
**********************************************
One way to define them is to say
they are men who know what must be said
but consistently and unanimously avoid
doing what must be done.
*
RIGHT AND WRONG
************************************
It is not enough to say we did nothing wrong.
Did we do anything right?
Even more to the point:
Can we even tell right from wrong?
*
OUR SHISH-KEBAB PARTIES
**************************************
Members of the Tea Party in America
are the offspring of individuals
who in the second half of the 19th century
fought a bloody civil war –
some say the bloodiest in history –
in defense of slavery.
They remind me of our
bosses, bishops, and benefactors
who, to save the nation, they divide it.
*
WORDS OF WISDOM
********************************
There is an old Armenian saying:
“He is so smart he even knows
where the devil sleeps.”
The devil, my friends, sleeps where he resides
and he resides in our hearts.
*
TELL ME
************************
Am I saying anything
you don’t already know?
#
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Old 30.10.2013, 15:21   #475
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ON CRACKPOTS
***********************************
In a recent issue of TIME magazine
there is an interview with Andre Agassi
in which Armenians and massacres are not mentioned.
*
The best thing Saroyan ever said about the Genocide is that
he felt sorry for the Turks.
*
Now you may understand why I refer to
Genocide ghazetajis, Hai Tahd activists and fund-raisers
as Turcocentric crackpots.
*
There is a baloney artist in all politicians
and ours are no exception.
#
THREE MAXIMS
***************************
Thinking against oneself
is one of the cardinal virtues.
*
Politicians and honesty are
mutually exclusive concepts.
*
To believe when you are right
you have God and Truth on your side
is to be a potential assassin and terrorist.
#
READING BETWEEN THE LINES
********************************************
We all have our share of limitations
with one difference: some of us
are infatuated with them.
Erasmus of Rotterdam was right when he said:
“Everyone loves the smell of his own sh*t.”
*
The need to be understood
always exceeds the need to understand.
*
Where lawyers and politicians enter,
injustice and lies are sure to follow.
*
Never contradict a politician or a lawyer:
remember, they are professionals.
*
To my anti-American friends
from the Middle East I say:
“I agree with you provided you also agree with me
when I say the rest of the world is no better.”
*
Nobody ever said to be an honest man among crooks
comes without a price.
*
I don’t always like or agree with what I say
but once I put down 2+2=
I have no choice but to say 4.
#
READERS
*************************
There is a type of reader
(and I have my share of them)
who is programmed to disagree and reject
anything that is not recycled propaganda.
Such a reader doesn’t even bother or begin
to understand what’s being said.
He just hangs a label on you
and forever after identifies you
as the lowest form of animal life –
namely, an Armenian
who doesn’t love all Armenians
and hate all Turks.
Such a reader is convinced
anyone who has more power or money
must know better.
He is Bolshevik in his pragmatism,
capitalist in his value system,
and Catholic in his dogmatism.
#


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Wine

































ON CRACKPOTS
***********************************
In a recent issue of TIME magazine
there is an interview with Andre Agassi
in which Armenians and massacres are not mentioned.
*
The best thing Saroyan ever said about the Genocide is that
he felt sorry for the Turks.
*
Now you may understand why I refer to
Genocide ghazetajis, Hai Tahd activists and fund-raisers
as Turcocentric crackpots.
*
There is a baloney artist in all politicians
and ours are no exception.
#
THREE MAXIMS
***************************
Thinking against oneself
is one of the cardinal virtues.
*
Politicians and honesty are
mutually exclusive concepts.
*
To believe when you are right
you have God and Truth on your side
is to be a potential assassin and terrorist.
#
READING BETWEEN THE LINES
********************************************
We all have our share of limitations
with one difference: some of us
are infatuated with them.
Erasmus of Rotterdam was right when he said:
“Everyone loves the smell of his own sh*t.”
*
The need to be understood
always exceeds the need to understand.
*
Where lawyers and politicians enter,
injustice and lies are sure to follow.
*
Never contradict a politician or a lawyer:
remember, they are professionals.
*
To my anti-American friends
from the Middle East I say:
“I agree with you provided you also agree with me
when I say the rest of the world is no better.”
*
Nobody ever said to be an honest man among crooks
comes without a price.
*
I don’t always like or agree with what I say
but once I put down 2+2=
I have no choice but to say 4.
#
READERS
*************************
There is a type of reader
(and I have my share of them)
who is programmed to disagree and reject
anything that is not recycled propaganda.
Such a reader doesn’t even bother or begin
to understand what’s being said.
He just hangs a label on you
and forever after identifies you
as the lowest form of animal life –
namely, an Armenian
who doesn’t love all Armenians
and hate all Turks.
Such a reader is convinced
anyone who has more power or money
must know better.
He is Bolshevik in his pragmatism,
capitalist in his value system,
and Catholic in his dogmatism.
#
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Old 02.11.2013, 14:56   #476
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FROM MY NOTEBOOKS
**********************************
Loyalty or subservience to authority
is not patriotism but fascism.
*
My guess is, we produce
more speechifiers, sermonizers and pundits
per capita than any other nation on earth.
*
Who speaks today in the name of the people,
and when I say people I mean
not the dead but the living.
*
The most important questions in life
are destined to remain unanswered.
Even belief systems that pretend
to have all the answers
are willing to acknowledge this fact.
There is a well-known story about a theologian
who on informing the Pope that he had written
a 1000-page treatise explaining the mystery
of the Holy Trinity was ordered to “burn it!”
#
LIVE AND LEARN
**********************************
Until very recently I wasn’t aware of the fact
that fund-raising is a profitable enterprise
and that some chief executive officers
of charitable organizations
are paid million-dollar salaries.
*
Wee are more civilized.
Our charitable organizations
don’t have chief executive officers;
even more to the point,
they are accountable only to God,
which in practice, means no one.
*
Question: Do CEOs of charitable organizations
contribute to charitable organizations?
#
SCENARIOS
******************************
On the day Azeris open their borders
we will bleed from three open wounds:
East, West, and North.
*
At the present rate of exodus,
they will not have to fight us
to reoccupy their lands,
they will just walk in.
*
I am a comfort to our enemies?
What about our dividers?
What is their message?
Let me guess:
“No need to kill us,
we plan to commit suicide.”
What else?
#
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Old 06.11.2013, 15:54   #477
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ON POWER
**************************************
Men in a position of power need flattery
as much as a starving man needs bread.
Their intolerance and hatred of dissent
is rooted in vanity and not
in some kind of ideological opposition.
They don’t give a damn about ideas and ideologies
which they consider a waste of time.
To them intellectuals are no better than children
and ideas their invisible toys or
verbal hallucinations or ghosts
and they don’t believe in ghosts.
Words are good only when they glorify
and flatter their egos.
In their own eyes power is a blessing from God.
It follows, whatever they do
bears God’s seal of approval.
Hence degenerate rulers
and moronic multimillionaires
operating on the assumption
they are the uncrowned kings of the community.
*
History is clear on this point.
Power drives men mad.
Power is not a blessing but a curse.
At the turn of the last century
in the Ottoman Empire the sultan
had a thousand concubines
and as many versifiers,
among them Armenians,
singing his praises.
*
Talaat was more enlightened.
He counted among his friends
several intellectuals
among them our own Zohrab.
But as soon as he acquired power
he had Zohrab assassinated.
Napoleon put it best when he said
“A man with an idea is my enemy.”
#
MORE ON TURCOCENTRISM
*********************************************
Turcocentrism may also be defined
as an ideology that says
we are not the architects of our destiny.
It follows, the only logical explanation
of our misfortunes is: “**** happens.”
*
Consider earthquakes as a case in point.
What we are not told is that
according to experts
“Earthquakes don’t kill people; buildings do.”
*
Nothing comes more naturally
to a compulsive and habitual liar than
to cover up and to lie.
*
The priority of all businessmen is profit.
The more profit the better.
Likewise, the priority of all politicians
regardless of race, color and creed is power –
the more power the merrier,
even if it means the destruction of the nation.
*
Our dealers in chauvinist crapola
expect us to believe
what applies to all politicians
does not apply to our own
who rule and divide by the grace of God.
#
FOREIGNER
***********************
To me, the ultimate odar (foreigner)
is the Ottomanized and Sovietized Armenian.
*
ON SURVIVAL
********************
We have survived – no one denies that –
but survived as what?
*
PARADOX
*************************
Armenians who classify themselves as the best,
sooner or later expose themselves as the worst.
#
“We are a people like any other people.”
“Don’t flatter yourself.”
#
ZOHRAB & CHARENTS
**********************************
“We are a people like any other people.”
“Don’t flatter yourself.
Even our greatest intellectuals and poets,
like Zohrab and Charents, were dupes
of enemy propaganda.”
“What would you have done in their place?”
“Probably what they did and having done so
I would deserve universal ridicule and contempt.”
*
SAROYAN
*********************
I will never forget the angry letter
one of our elder statesmen sent me
after reading one of my anti-Soviet tirades:
“Saroyan loves the regime.
You think you are smarter than Saroyan?”
*
GUILTY AS CHARGED
*****************************
You say I simplify complexities?
What does propaganda do?
What is propaganda if not the mother tongue
of self-satisfied idiots and their dupes?
*
GUILTY AS CHARGED II
*************************************
“You repeat yourself.”
“Not as often as our propagandists.”
#
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Old 07.11.2013, 17:02   #478
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Uhm, Sir, Do you really believe someone would scrupulously read your propagandististical postings? What relates to Armenians, they always tend to talk much and do nothing.
Take care.
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Old 09.11.2013, 15:55   #479
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WHO IS A GOOD ARMENIAN?
*******************************************
Sartre: “It is the rich man who is virtuous
and wants everyone else to be.
His values are a defense if the status quo.”
*
Everyone is against dividers,
but everyone seems to be for the status quo,
especially if he belongs to the privileged classes –
namely bosses, bishops, benefactors and their assorted hirelings and dupes.
*
Who is a good Armenian?
“An Armenian who has Mt. Ararat in his heart,”
-- whatever the hell that means.
*
I am not a Biblical scholar
but the scholars I have consulted inform me
the Bible does not mention “Mt. Ararat.”
It says “mountains of Urartu,”
of which there are about a thousand
and most of them are not in Armenia.
#
CAREER MOVES
*******************************
For a good number of years
my sole ambition in life
was to be a brown-nosier.
It took me quite a few years
to realize it was a bad choice –
and bad not on moral grounds
but bad because
the competition was too stiff.
*
MEMO
TO MY PATRIOTIC READERS
*********************************************
The difference between you and me
is that you like to brag
and I don’t.
#
OUR LORDS AND MASTERS
**************************************
Some readers,
among them former friends,
disagree with me for an
understandably compelling reason:
they are financially dependent
on the charity of swine.
They may preach freedom
but they are afraid
not only of free speech
but also of fellow Armenians
who engage in it.
*
Our political and religious leaders
are neither God’s nor people’s servants;
they are our Lords and Masters.
Deviate an inch
and you are shish-kebab!
#
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Old 13.11.2013, 15:45   #480
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A SKETCH OF MY LIFE
*************************************
In my formative years
I was carefully brought up to be a garbage can
Of prejudices, lies, and propaganda.
If I understand my fellow Armenians today
it may be because once upon a time
I was one of them
and I refuse to pretend otherwise.
*
It was very late in life
that I realized deep inside somewhere
I harbored a human being.
*
I wasted most of my life
trying to please individuals
whom I now classify as somewhere between
moral riffraff and the scum of the earth.
*
When I say I loathe dupes
what I really mean is that
I loathe the dupe in me.
The only thing I am willing to brag about
is the fact that in my childhood
I experienced homelessness, destitution,
war, and discrimination in an alien environment.
*
Did I survive?
Who can really tell?
I feel more like that English soldier
on the battlefield who,
when informed by his king that he was wounded,
replied: “Nay, Sire, I am dead.”
#
RECYCLING
**************************
To live in oppression means to believe in things
that you don’t and to trust the judgment of individuals
with the morality of pimps.
As a nation we have lived in oppression
for so many centuries that
we are no longer in a position to tell
the difference between
freedom and oppression.
Hence the saying:
“Once upon a time we were slaves;
we are now slaves of former slaves.”
Progress is our least important product.
*
One of the most useful tools
in criminal investigations is to ask:
“Who benefits?”
Who benefits from our divisions?
*
“A bourgeois is a bourgeois
regardless of nationality,” Lenin said.
So is a divider, a charlatan, and a deceiver.
*
“You repeat yourself.”
So do our dealers in chauvinist crapola.
*
I don’t write to achieve fame, fortune,
and immortality.
I write to share my understanding.
#
WHAT I BELIEVE
***********************************
I believe in the Incomprehensible,
the Unknowable and in the commandment
“Thou shalt not bear false witness.
As for “Thou shalt not kill”:
I believe a system that has legitimized
the burning of heretics and more recently
war and massacre is an invention of the Devil.
The rest is metaphysics, mumbo jumbo,
propaganda, and taxation without representation.
*
My aim in life is not to achieve
fame, fortune, and greatness
but to be less dishonest.
*
As the offspring of perennial losers,
I have a soft spot for all losers
even when they are identified as the enemy.
#
TRASHLAND
**********************
If Gogol and Kafka were to come back to life and collaborate on a book about reality in present-day Armenia, the result would be Denis Donikian’s VIDURES or AGHPASTAN, in Ruzanna Vartanian’s excellent Armenian translation (403 pages, Yerevan, 2013).
Aghpastan, literally Trashland, is a biting satire and a horror story written with withering wit that utilizes many genres and styles reminiscent of James Joyce.
*
During a walk two friends discover the corpse of a woman in a garbage dump, an obvious victim of foul play.
“I know who she is,” one of them says. “I recognize her by her hair and the undamaged side of her face. We should go to the cops.”
The other is outraged.
“The cops! The cops? Can you picture me walking into a police station? Walking in is easy. The trick is coming out. And sometimes you never come out.”
“But it is against the law not to report a murder. If we ignore this murder and another murder next day, what happens if you or I are the next victims? If you and I and everybody else ignores a murder we become a nation of amnesiacs at the mercy of others.”
“Maybe so -- but what happens if we are detained by the police? And when I say detained I don’t mean for an hour or a day but for months. Think of my piglets: what happens to them?”
The conclusion is obvious: “Aghpastan” has become a country that swims in crime, criminals, executioners, and their victims.
*
The book begins and ends with the same two words: “Der Voghormia” (Lord have mercy).
#
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