The Truth, The Partial Truth And Nothing But The Latest Opinion

WARNING: The following paragraphs may contain words, terms and sentiments that some people might find offensive. Readers who have no concept of irony, sarcasm and "piss taking" or who require councelling after encountering opinions not their own, should not read on.

Hard as it is to believe in this relativist, non-authoritative age, there was once a time when some opinions mattered more than others and when those with knowledge, experience and judgement were respected as voices to be listened to and even - on increasingly rare occasions - to be learned from.


The rise of social media has, of course, permitted a welcome diversity of views to be aired and - every now and then - casually debated [Really - I thought we were against all this ether-borne crap [Ed]], but there are now alive and living in the great county of Dorset, young people who believe that everything that anyone cares to say [provided it does not challenge their viewpoint or express ideas they find unacceptable - see non-platforming* and Who To Blame If Someone Says Something Upsetting [Dorset Social Services Pamphlet BSC/32a] is as valid "in its own way" as anything hitherto accepted as "common sense", "received opinion", "conventional wisdom", "indisputable fact" or just plain "truth".


* non-platforming: the act of denying the opportunity to speak to anyone you happen to disagree with. First exercised in the University of Afpuddle Student Union [2015] and subsequently spread virally [largely through contact with Vice-Chancellors], to all places once designated as centres of "education, science, religion and learning".


Now that the concepts of objective knowledge and authorial voice have been all but extinguished, every Tom, Dick and Harriet can, of course, have his/her/they say and whilst this can be refreshing [Again, really? Do we have to pander to this infancy? [Ed]], it can also be tiresome, irritating, frustrating, sick-making and generally ludicrous. So it was with some relief and not a little mirth that we were reminded, recently, of a time when an academically certified expert was regarded as a man to be trusted whereof he spoke with regard to what he knew.


The refreshing certainties of earlier times were reflected in many travel promotions.

Following an office refurbishment and the re-location of three large filing cabinets to a different room, staff at proferssorthrupiece.com were intrigued to find attached to a wall behind, a poster dating from the 1950s recommending an island off the Dorset coast as an ideal place to recharge one's batteries and endorsed by no less an authority that Professor Brian Thrupiece himself. A widely travelled man even in his teens [he had "done" Paris with his mother by 1946 and was as familiar with Moscow as New York by the middle 1950s] it came as something of a surprise to find the prodigious scientific aesthete lending his much-respected name to a location suprisingly proximate to his birthplace. [See Perry Pattetick [1999] Exotica, Erotica and the Search for Euphoria: The Early Travels of Professor Brian Thrupiece; Threadbone Travellers Library Vol LVII].


That Poster: appropriately hidden for several decades, its rediscovery has been described as "inopportune".

Still and all, it is unquestionably the sign of a great man that, whilst many of us roam far and wide in a doubtless forlorn quest for instant hedonistic excitement, he can find "truth, beauty and a wondrous world" on his own doorstep. [You might want to look again at this sentence - strikes me as a bit gendered [Sub-Sub-Ed]. Oh for F**k's sake. [Sub-Ed]. I feel a migraine coming on [Ed].]


Today's Modern Fleet has updated sentiments more in line with modern thinking.


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