Half empty Glasses and the Law

October 14, 2016 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | CRIME, LIFE |

The Varnished Culture’s correspondent attended the 15th International Criminal Law Congress (disguised as a civilian) and reports on developments that should interest intelligent laypersons in general. After a more than usually genial ‘Welcome to Country’ by Uncle Lewis O’Brien, Kaurna Elder (a timeless indigenous ceremony invented by an activist circa 1976), Father Frank Brennan, Jesuit Priest, “Living National Treasure” and “Professor of Human Rights & Social Justice” gave a set speech, but a very learned, balanced and thoughtful one on the parlous state of indigenous Australia, which left your faithless TVC reporter completely bereft. Unable to defenestrate the grand truth (per Herr Hayek) that…

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Impressions – Jon-Benet Ramsey, 20 years on.

October 11, 2016 | Posted by Lesley Jakobsen | CRIME, LIFE |

The Ramsey Case Continues – the Burke Interview We recently wrote about the speculative case mounted in a CBS Special concerning the unsolved death of Jon Benét Ramsey. Since then we have had the opportunity to view the interview by Dr Phil McGraw with Burke Ramsey, now 29 years old. Recorded earlier this year and screened in September, the first half discloses no smoking pistol but by the same token, it adds fuel to the flame (pardon the mixed metaphors). Burke denies allegations of assaulting his sister, on the night she died or ever before. There will be some who find…

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The Case that Will Not Die

September 22, 2016 | Posted by Lesley Jakobsen | CRIME, Documentary, Drama Film, LIFE |

The Death of Jon Benét Ramsey We have spoken of the various imaginative, speculative and trashy treatments of this awful case before: See Perfect Murder, Perfect Town and Books About Jon Benét. Disclaimer: TVC has a keen interest in but no actual knowledge of, this matter.  Apart from an individual who appears to have confessed to the crime in order to be extradited from a Thai jail, no one has admitted guilt nor been charged.  Patsy Ramsey is now deceased and she always denied involvement in the killing, as have John and Burke Ramsey.  We are discussing possible solutions on a…

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The Last Supper

May 28, 2016 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | ART, CRIME, RELIGION, Ulalume |

"the hand of him that betrayeth me is with me on the table.'

Milan, 1999, 28 MAY Leonardo’s The Last Supper was restored this day to public view after 22 years of restoration, roughly 501 years after the great artist completed it. You can clamber over the crowds and see this acme of Renaissance fusion (christian myth and enlightenment art) at Santa Maria delle Grazie, in Milan, a scene recounted in the books Matthew and John, where Jesus, looking serene after a tasty lunch, gives all the apostles indigestion with his infamous accusation. Leonardo (15 April 1452 – 2 May 1519) was not only a polymorphous genius, he was also reputedly quite crafty.  All the…

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February 28, 2016 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | CRIME, METAPHYSICS, PETER'S WRITING |

"The Chasseur in the Forest", Caspar David Friedrich, 1814 (detail)

[A lunatic from the past, Bela Kiss, living in conditions of relative tranquility (in Hungarian, “Nyugalom“), made recordings of his ravings in the first-person mode obtaining from time immemorial. These have been transcribed and lovingly italicized by a team of scholars with rather too much affection for the source. The editor has taken the liberty of suggesting that the ensuing statements in the manuscript smack of self-serving apologia, akin to the homilies obtaining in the forwards of most modern three-volume biographies, to the effect that guessing, decontextualizing, moralizing and or fiction are necessary in order to render an antique subject…

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