Monday, January 11, 2010

Urban Legends

Lately, I have been getting some fascinating forwards in my email box. A quick jump over to "" often helps to get the skinny on these stories. Some are "well, what difference does it make", and others are ridiculous "Oh my god, that means that the leader of the Illluminati is hiding in my underwear drawer", and some are outright lies..."Oliver North's testimony was that he installed an expensive security system on his house because he was scared of Osama Bin Laden".

In this world of instant communication, Churchill's phrase "A lie goes around the world before the truth can get its trousers on" is demonstrated daily. I personally don't like lies....even little white lies, because I figure if whoever sent me a lie about "that" (whatever "that" might be) always must then face the question, "If you lie to me about "that", then what else are you lying to me about?"

One is reminded watching the Montreal Rally and the pictures of St. Catherine Street clearly filled with thousands of demonstrators, and the reporters saying "as many as two hundred people are in the street waving plaquards". I was yelling at the screen "TWO HUNDRED PEOPLE....ARE YOU NUTS." and in fact, some of my "on the fence" Quebecois friends were watching that, and they too were struck with the obvious fact that the news guy was lying, and they too were wondering "if they are lying about numbers of demonstrators, what ELSE are they lying about?" So when you get caught out in a lie, you lose all credibility. Many of my friends made up their mind then and there to vote against the separation because they suddenly didn't trust the people who would suddenly be in charge!

As for "its more fun to just send them out"....well, I would not mind if they were simple "Thank you for being my friend" cards (though I am always struck by the fact that if I was such a great friend, then why don't you take a moment to tell me personally instead of sending a forward out on a distribution list, but still, they are nice to get.) but many of the items I see forwarded to my email box seem to be politically motivated, and some seem to come perilously close to resembling hate mail.
Even then, the distribution of political texts is a fine and noble exercise in free speech. The article about Oliver North is not particularly political, but rather a little inflammatory, and was a fine example of what I regard as "False History". If anyone feels that there is no harm in "False History", I merely point them to a pre war publication called "The Chonicles of Zion".

Anyway, on that note, I shall leave you with my very best wishes and that I hope that you and your family will prosper in the coming year.

Bill Fedun

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