by Larry Iles,MA,AM,BA,PGCE,ABD.

In a seemingly innocuous commentary to my Dulce Decorum WWi articles here in this monthly,my very right wing Uncle,with only one Cambridge honorary MA to his credit and over half a century of public neglect of my grandfather,s WW1 role,castigates me for all sorts of what he arrogantly mislabels error on his father.In fact despite being in recovery from a life-threatening bothched operation,all THE MONITOR collective know I went out of my way to accommodate his originally intemperate critique of the WHOLE  pieces altogether.Without telling me until too late he asked his two richest sons to research the book he cites as allegedly proving one S.kING hALL as the sole author of the Jutland diary I was given by BOTH my maternal grandmother and my mother to use as I wanted.They sadlylike him have not even requested the full diary I alone evidently had or taken into account the before he died critical viewpoint of WWi my grandad REPETITIVELY confided to me,often in oral history in the presence reinforcingly of his wife and this Uncles very own sister,my mother as context WW2 comparison,appeasement described in the two artcles.In the US JOURNALISM HISTORY JNL last year ,vol 40,no 3 F.Anderson in an article entitled CONCEALED HISTORY describes devastatingly principally on WWi the type of  masculinist cover-up history my uncle wanted me to write,including even a travesty of W,Owens detestation fatally of that war.More specifically it emerges JD Dobson did actually write up PERHAPS Halls account and in that respect was AT Jutland.nothing else was claimed by me.Hall was later published by the right wing E Benn pro-war,anti-feminist press in even childrens stories and alas both he and my brave grandad may have,legit so in my view been in breach of the secretive OFFICIAL SECRETS ACT of 1911 in their very selective use of the diary to support Jellicoes non-pursuit option  of the German fleet to save lives,a controversy this Dobson chooses to ignore eeven though it still rages.I rest my case,will enter into no further public MONITOT DEBATE  on this topic,and I am dismayed at this relatives disregard of WOMENS HERSTORY ORAL TESTIMONY.confident my grandmother did wise in entrustion this part of her hubbys legacy to me in outranking publications and Labour/Liberal history to my rather too bellicose uncle.

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The Windsor Prince and I by Chris Sotraidis

The Windsor Prince and I
a short play by Chris Sotraidis

Cast of Characters:

Prince Andrew, Duke of York……………………….as Honorary Rear Admiral of the Royal Navy
Jeffrey Edward Epstein……………………………….as American Financier and Registered Sex Offender
Virginia Roberts…………………………………………as Trafficked Teenager and Slave to the Monarchy

Act I. Scene I. The North Sea, near Aberdeen. The year is 2001. Our characters have been traveling on a yacht owned by Jeffrey Epstein for the past 6 weeks. It is the early morning and the sea is fair. The Scottish shoreline is to the west, just barely visible on the horizon. Prince Andrew has arisen from his royal bed beneath the deck to sit with his tea and satellite phone on the Poop deck.

Enter Prince Andrew, Duke of York, on the Poop deck.

PRINCE: Oh, ho! What a glorious day to be alive on the sea! Not just alive, I dare say, but teeming, positively teeming with radiant vigor only the cosmic philosopher Ra can deliver! Let his rays hit me like a mantra sung in the thralls of an opium induced utopia!

Enter Jeffrey Epstein, stumbling onto the Poop deck to sit in a white leather chair next to Prince Andrew. Both Prince Andrew and Jeffrey Epstein are sitting on inordinately expensive leather couches, complete with satellite phone holders. The two gentlemen stare at the open sea.

EPSTEIN: (sighing) Why do we do it, Andrew?

PRINCE: To what are you referring, Jeffrey?

EPSTEIN: I mean the struggle. The struggle for the heights, the endless revisions and calculations. The long cold nights spent tucked away attempting to ascend ourselves, filling our minds with the thoughts of long dead philosophers. I’m talking about the Übermensch, a lengthy climb to God- nay the gods!

PRINCE: My dear Jeffrey, that’s what this trip is all about! You’re the one that convinced me a neo-spiritual awakening was needed more than ever! And you’ve been right! How are we to cleanly extrude our inner-complexities if you are in any degree of doubt?

EPSTEIN: I guess I’ve been so focused on finding some semblance of wholeness on our terra that I’ve lost sight of our initial endeavor. This was never about perfection! I refuse to make the same comically shrewd judgment of the world like Pangloss. Yes, the world may be flawed, fundamentally so, but that shouldn’t stop us from attempting to refine our minds. A healthy mind for the sake of itself.

PRINCE: (raising his tea cup) Cheers to that! Here’s to a life of no regrets. A life of inner-purity; a balance of hedonism and intellectual pursuits!

EPSTEIN: Cheers to that indeed! Andrew, you are my oldest and dearest friend, and you know that I would seek you reprise after reprise for advice, no matter how solemn or gay the exchange.

PRINCE: Yes, and I you! No book unread, no stone unturned! I am as dedicated as you in our quest for making sense of this malicious world.

EPSTEIN: Right. (pausing for a moment) The reason I’ve been so formal this morn stems entirely from my increasingly conflicting thoughts about the mademoiselle we have taking quarter in our spare bedroom beneath the deck.

PRINCE: The slave? What about her?

EPSTEIN: I suppose I’m having second thoughts about owning slaves. All these years, I’ve lied to everyone. People ask me my profession, and I feel conflicted. Am I a financier, or slave trader?

PRINCE: You’re both, Jeffrey. Be proud of that.

EPSTEIN: It just doesn’t feel sound anymore. This cultural atmosphere, the year 2001. I’m finally starting to feel again, Andrew.



PRINCE: (scoffing) How can we own slaves if you develop a conscious like that?

EPSTEIN: Maybe I don’t want to own slaves anymore!

PRINCE: (gasping) What?! Jeffrey, you can’t be serious! Take it back! You know that’s not true!

EPSTEIN: Okay, I still want to own slaves. What I said before was a tad batty….. I don’t want to be a sex slave trafficker anymore!

PRINCE: (even louder gasp) WHAT?! How will the royal family survive?

EPSTEIN: What the devil do you mean, survive? Your family has been controlling England for almost a hundred years. Do you not have other contacts? I’m sure your relatives can last a good period of time without the assistance of a sex slave!

PRINCE: I’m afraid I haven’t been completely honest with you, Jeffrey. I’m afraid I haven’t shown you what I truly am.

EPSTEIN: Andrew, I already know that you’re a morally corrupt, socially incompetent person. Anyone can see that. It’s practically a requirement for having royal blood.

PRINCE: There’s something about my blood that’s colder, more elusive and hidden than you could ever possibly imagine.

Prince Andrew leaps up from his ultra-comfy armchair to stand before Jeffrey, and with one swift motion pulls off a large chunk of skin from his face. Underneath the skin is a Komodo dragon looking-face, complete with an inordinately long skinny tongue and two sets of eyelids.

EPSTEIN: Andrew, I already knew you were a Reptilian.

PRINCE: (with a shocked expression on his lizard face) Huh? You did? What gave it away?

EPSTEIN: You told me. Remember last week when we caught that little gecko that had managed to climb aboard? I was about to throw it off the deck and you started hissing at me. And then you blurted out that you were a lizard too.


EPSTEIN: (Keanu Reeves) Woah. I’m presuming that your mother is the Lizard Queen? That certainly explains why all of the white slaves I’ve been trafficking go missing immediately after your family takes one look at them.

Enter Virginia onto the Poop deck, with a certain swag to her step that could only be described as ultra-sassy.

VIRGINIA: He’s not the Lizard King! He told me while we were having non-consensual sex a few days ago! Prince is the real Lizard King, not Andrew!

PRINCE: (hissing) Virginia! How did you escape your jail cell in the lower quarters?

VIRGINIA: You didn’t lock the cell.

PRINCE: (hissing) Hisssssssss.

EPSTEIN: Virginia, what do you mean, Prince? Are you saying there’s another?

VIRGINIA: Yes, I am. The Purple One. Joey Coco. Alexander Nevermind. The artist formerly known as Prince!

Suddenly, a maelstrom appears on the sea in front of the Poop deck. The swirling vortex turns a bright purple color, more of a fuchsia, and various guitar chords are heard emanating from the center. The sky darkens, and it begins to rain purple. A long “ohhhhhhhhhhhh!” is heard, and a blinding purple lightbeam appears to transport a celestial creature from the center of the maelstrom to the Poop deck.


VIRGINIA: (kneeling) Lord Prince, it is I, Virginia Roberts, a slave to the Windsor royal family! I am being mistreated by your brother, Prince Andrew!

PRINCE: It was a mistake, my brother! It won’t happen again! The rest of the family wasn’t blessed with your powers. We can’t survive solely on the pleasures of achieving artistic success! I just wanted what is best for mother!


PRINCE: No, brother, I can change! I’ll stop financing the white slave trafficking! I’ll stop making relationships with people who know a great deal about your previous names! I’ll stop listening to R&B music!


A fuchsia mist engulfs Prince Andrew, and with the blink of an eye Andrew’s skin turns from scaly to mushy white human.

PRINCE: No! What have you done?!

EPSTEIN: Now you’re just like the rest of us, Andrew. Mortal and weak, with a craving for pizza and hamburgers.

PRINCE: Hamburgers?! No!

VIRGINIA: I think you’ll find them quite tasty, at least compared to human flesh and blood.


A bolt of fuchsia lightning strikes Virginia and Prince Joey Coco, and they vanish into thin air. All that is left is smoldering blackened soot on the wood floor of the Poop deck.

EPSTEIN: Wow. I wasn’t expecting that at all. Who knew that the key to Prince’s youthful appearance was his Reptilian ancestry?

PRINCE: (sobbing) I’m ruined, Jeffrey. I’m done for. What could possibly be good about being a mortal?

EPSTEIN: Pizza. Pizza for breakfast.


Chris Sotraidis is a Reptilian, which would explain why he’s single and unable to find love.

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What did Karl Marx have to say? by Will Chaney

Communism. Socialism. Joseph Stalin. Planned economy. U.S.S.R. Marxism. Are you uncomfortable yet? For a long time in this country, an ideology has been built for the purpose of making you feel negative emotions while hearing these words. The most extreme lines include “communism is evil” and that it has “killed millions of innocent people.” The chic thing our parents often say is that “communism was defeated when the U.S.S.R. went down, I watched it on live television.” Then there’s the trendy intellectual-sounding truism that “communism works out great on paper, but it will never work because of human nature.” What do we learn from these quick “academic” discussions? Very little.

So let’s put our emotions to the side for a few minutes so we can get back to the O.G.: Karl Marx. In this article, I’m going to respond to Aaron Albrecht’s criticism that we need to abandon Marxism in order to unify the Left. Instead, I claim that the Left needs to organize its thought around Marxian theory so it can better understand our current economic crisis and look to the future of revolutionary change.

The criticisms that Aaron and many others often bring up are very legitimate and should be seriously considered. Communism-hating Americans often rightly point to leaders in faraway lands that claimed to embrace Marx while starving their people and violating human rights. The field of economics is designed to show how central planning, used in many “communist” countries, is much worse than the free market because of its “inefficiencies.” However, these critiques have very little bearing on Marxian theory, because:

  1. Marx never said the government should own everything,
  2. Marx never said we should abolish markets, and
  3. Marx never said that dictatorship is the ideal form of government.

It seems that there is a substantial gap between what Karl Marx actually wrote and what the leaders who took up his name did. What then did Marx have to say?

In the United States, we are told that Marx was the founder of communism and that his writings and thoughts were all about making a communist society. However, Marx didn’t care too much about speculating into the future; instead he spent his time examining the present. About 95% of what Marx has to say is about capitalism, especially the problems that other authors ignore. The most interesting aspect of Marx’s critique is that it examines fundamental problems in capitalism that are as relevant now as they were when his most important work, Capital, was published in 1867. Marx’s analysis attempts to be scientific, and his goal was to find general tendencies in the economy, comparable to how scientists look at the natural world. After more than twenty years of research, Marx was able to detail many problems that still occur today. However, the study of the economy is not as straightforward as the hard sciences. Instead of finding “laws” in capitalism, Marx found capitalism to produce “tendencies.”

Some these tendencies include: (1) extreme wealth inequality, (2) cycles of prosperity and then horrific crashes, (3) the replacement of workers by machines or cheaper workers, (4) nations going to war for the profits of a small number of citizens, and (5) the general rate of all business’s profits to fall over time.

Have these claims proved to be somewhat legitimate in the past 150 years? (1) 1% of Americans own 40% of our wealth, (2) “business cycles” as they are now called by bourgeois economists occur every 10 years or so, including the one we’re in now, (3) “Made in China” and continuous outsourcing have become staples of our economy, (4) there is substantial proof that we went to war in the Middle East for oil profits, and (5) the economic growth rate of the United States has decreased from 3.5% in the 1950s to 1.9% today. The facts seem to line up with some of Marx’s major points, and this gives his theory a lot of validity.

Now painting Marx as a stoned Nostradamus-like prophet babbling nonsense in some dirty cave certainly does sound dogmatic. However, Marx did not set out to create a new religion with himself as its soothsayer. It is indisputable that some “Marxists” like Stalin and Mao, did try to create religious-like ideologies, but the fact is that Marx’s serious writings are simply a critique of capitalism. Marxian theory is still today accepted as the most developed fundamental critique of capitalism. I now ask Aaron, and all of those who disregard Marx: why would the Left, charged with looking out for the little guy, correcting social ills, and fighting for the people want to distance themselves from such a useful and developed critique? We can use Marxian theory to find new explanations for many issues, including the events in Ferguson, why college tuition is so high, and why Kraft is throwing 275 Kirksville residents are out of a job this year.

That brings us to the last point: Many super smart people in the past 150 years have built on Marx’s original theory. They have proposed new ideas, debated each other and non-Marxists, and answered their critics. The result has been a very rich academic tradition. There is certainly a lot to talk about, with regards to the news, in our classrooms, and even with our nerdy friends at lunch. So why do our discussions about Marxism degrade into overly simplified axioms?

The purpose of any ideology is to make us accept the current state of affairs. The people in power want us to look at poverty, hunger, and war, and think, “that’s just the way things are.” It should not be surprising that capitalism’s greatest challenge is kept out of the mind of a capitalist society like the United States, even where free speech is treated like a golden calf.

Marxian theory is suppressed at most colleges and universities, including Truman. As an economics major, I will never be required to read one word of Capital. The only line about Marx in my introductory economics textbook (Principals of Modern Economics, page 22 if you have it) is a gross misquotation. If I talk to other economics majors about Marxian economics, they usually giggle as if it is a joke or look confused about something. Should we blame our fellow students, professors, or President Paino? Probably not. The suppression of Marxian theory is a greater problem that is not the fault of any one individual. Some professors, such as Dr. David Gillete, don’t teach Marxian theory in their classes, but are very open and accepting of different perspectives.

What we on the Left can do, and really have to do at this point in history, is to begin to educate ourselves. We must rid ourselves of the fear of couching our analysis in Marxian terms like “class,” “commodity fetishism,” and “exploitation.”

It is time to wake up, because capitalism certainly isn’t working out real well off paper.

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On and Off the Field by Sam Rogers

In a number of countries, you can guess someone’s general political views based on which soccer club they support. In the States, however, many an embarrassing uncle seems to have no political compass beyond loyalty to his favorite team. The year 2014 made it hard for those folks to stay out of touch as sports became more visibly political in the US than they had been in decades.

The International Olympic Committee claims to disapprove of using the games to make political statements. In the summer of 1968, for example, it expelled 200-meter medallists Tommie Smith and John Carlos when they saluted in solidarity with the Black liberation struggle back home in the US. The precedent did not scare the US delegation to February’s games in Sochi, which addressed Russia’s ban on “gay propaganda” by turning gay people into propaganda. Much like Black runner Jesse Owens, who won four gold medals in the 1936 Berlin games, three gay athletes served as pride tokens in a rival’s territory for a government that treats them like second-class citizens.

L.A. Clippers owner Donald Sterling finished March Madness as an April asshole when girlfriend V. Stiviano recorded the leather sugar daddy scolding her for bringing Black men to “his” games after she posted pictures of herself with various Black athletes online. Eventually, the NBA banned Sterling from the league and imposed their maximum fine of $2.5 million, a drop in the bucket for the multibillionaire and longest-running franchise owner alive. Similar to the racist, misogynistic comments on the Rutgers women’s basketball team that Don Imus vomited into 2007 airwaves, the Sterling incident reminds us that the people who profit from and are entertained by the feats of Black athletes do not necessarily respect them as people.

Daniel Snyder, owner of the D.C. area’s NFL franchise, didn’t let March slip away without taking his share of the racism spotlight. Responding to pressure to change the franchise’s branding, currently based around a colonial slur, he created the “Original Americans Foundation”, a charity that also bears the team’s offensive name. The condescending PR ploy backfired as many Native American organizations pushing for the name change responded with appropriate disgust. On the brighter side, some fans of the Cleveland Indians baseball team started removing the offensive Chief Wahoo logo from their team gear, which became known as “de-chiefing”. The year breathed new life into a decades-long campaign against names and mascots, both professional and amateur, that use racist depictions of indigenous people as primitive and violent.

The NFL grabbed some positive headlines when Missouri’s own Michael Sam became the first openly gay player drafted into the league. Sam was initially drafted by the St. Louis Rams. He also spent some time on the Dallas Cowboys practice squad. At the time of writing, he is a free agent. In addition to support from other players, Sam’s presence in the draft sparked humorously serious and often disappointing discussions of whether the NFL was “ready” for such a “change”.

Summer brought the FIFA World Cup live from Brazil to viewers around the globe. While record-breaking ratings showed gains in popularity among US audiences, mass demonstrations made it clear the event was much less popular in its host country. Crowds across Brazil protested corrupt and wasteful public spending on stadiums in a country where millions live in poverty and hunger. The brutal response involved São Paolo cops appearing at protests dressed like they had come from police-state dystopias like Robocop’s Detroit or contemporary St. Louis County. Preparations for the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro have contributed to the discontent. (Surprisingly, no one demanded the US apologize for sending Pitbull.)

An unfortunate number of media outlets ignored the protests, even when they happened on the field itself. During the opening ceremonies, three Brazilian children of different ethnicities released doves. As the birds flew off, a Guaraní 13-year-old named Werá Jeguaka Mirim turned the theatrical image of racial harmony into an indictment of 21st-century colonialism with a banner demanding Brazil honor its earlier promises of recognizing tribal lands. Guess which part the sports stations left out.

Back in 2012, Florida teenager Trayvon Martin was murdered by self-appointed neighborhood watchman George Zimmerman, a wannabe cop with no law-enforcement qualifications beyond his habit of racial profiling and domestic abuse. Alicia Garza, Patrisse Cullors, and Opal Tometi organized a response, one of numerous instances in which Black LGBT women have worked hard to build mass movements and been erased from the story later. You know the movement as Black Lives Matter, and Rams fans brought its clear demand to the Edward Jones Dome on banners they displayed during a game. They also added “on and off the field”, highlighting how American sports moguls and their audiences treat Black athletes as consumable entertainment and not human beings.

St. Louis County prosecuting attorney Robert McCulloch, son of a police officer, announced in Ǹovember that the state would not indict Ferguson officer Darren Wilson to stand trial for killing Michael Brown. When records of indictment proceedings went public, legal professionals questioned whether McCulloch and his colleagues had conducted themselves appropriately in presenting relevant laws and testimony to the grand jury.

At their next game, some Rams players responded to the horrifying news by making the iconic “hands up, don’t shoot” gesture as they took to the field. Players on the D.C. team mentioned earlier had done the same in August. Jeff Roorda, “business manager” for the St. Louis Police Officers Association, responded with anger about athletes expressing opinions on the field even after it took federal intervention to force the publicly-employed members of his “union” to stop wearing pro-Darren Wilson bracelets while in uniform. While the franchise stopped short of endorsement, they supported the players and set the record straight when police chief Jon Belmar falsely claimed the Rams had “apologized”.

Towards the year’s end, NBA players took the court for warm-ups in shirts reading “I Can’t Breathe” in honor of Eric Garner, a Staten Island father choked to death by NYPD officer Daniel Pantaleo. In California, Mendocino High students were banned from the Fort Bragg High School basketball tournament for wearing the shirts. A team was assembled of boys who accepted the ruling, but not enough of the girls would give up so easily. Visibility for politics in sports has continued rising into 2015, hopefully engaging fans in grassroots efforts to level the playing field.
Sam Rogers retired from his athletic career after an improbably successful T-ball game. He enjoys watching hockey and once played Madden at a friend’s house.

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Cuba: The End of the Embargo by Dr. Marc Becker

On December 17, U.S. president Barrack Obama and Cuban president Raúl Castro dropped a diplomatic bombshell when they announced that they would normalize diplomatic relationships between the two countries. The announcement caught almost all observers off guard. It seemed that this leftover legacy of the cold war would never disappear.

The roots of the conflict date back to the 1959 Cuban Revolution, and its leader Fidel Castro’s determination that major powers would treat the small island country as an equal. Cuba had long suffered under the imperial thumb of colonial powers, first Spain and then after 1898 the United States. The revolution definitively broke the back of imperial control.

The U.S. government did not let Cuba leave quietly and peacefully to determine its own future. Instead, the United States proceeded to engage in terrorist activities, including plotting to kill the country’s leaders, to return the island to its imperial control. Relations between the two countries rapidly deteriorated, leading to a break in diplomacy and a United States blockade of the island.

For decades, the U.S. government declared that it would refuse to normalize relations with Cuba as long as Fidel Castro was in power. When Fidel stepped down and passed power to his brother Raúl, United States officials announced that they would not normalize relations as long as a Castro was in power. When Raúl announced plans to step aside and let a new generation continue the revolution, the truth came out: the United States would only normalize relations if Cuba returned to its imperial control.

Given that history, Obama’s decision to normalize relations with Cuba while it still embraced socialist economic policies that privileged human needs over the rights of capital was completely unexpected and truly earth shattering.

Theoretically and under international law, countries conduct diplomatic relations on a level playing field. Granting of travel visas, for example, is supposed to be reciprocal. Of course, that rarely happens in real life. Large and powerful countries act at will against other countries they consider to be their subordinates.

Assistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs Roberta Jacobson recently traveled to Havana to negotiate a thawing of relations. She emphasized the need to assure full diplomatic access as the United States interest section is upgraded to an embassy. Ignored in most press reports was that the United States government imposes much more onerous restrictions on Cuban diplomats in the United States, including those at the United Nations, than Cuba imposed on their counterparts in Havana.

In his State of the State address, Missouri governor Jay Nixon announced plans for a trade mission to Cuba. Agro industrial giants such as ADM, Cargill, and Missouri’s own Monsanto have long desired an opening of commercial relations with Cuba so that they can prey on the country. Cuba should reciprocate with a trade mission to Missouri, perhaps to encourage the United States to develop a sustainable, organic, post-petroleum agriculture that privileges human health and needs over corporate profits. The Possibility Alliance in La Plata would be a good partner.

As part of the thawing of relations, Obama demanded the release of 53 political prisoners in Cuba. Castro should have responded with a similar demand for the release of the 100 political prisoners currently held in the United States. Most prominent are Mumia Abu Jamal who was an organizer against police abuses in African-American communities, and American Indian Movement activist Leonard Peltier. Both have rotted for decades in dungeons in the United States after receiving unfair trials, and likely will die there unless international diplomatic pressure forces a chance in policy. More recently, Army Private Chelsea Manning was sentenced to 35 years in prison for leaking evidence of U.S. war crimes in Iraq, and should also be released.

The United States government presses Cuba to prioritize individual liberal liberties, including a U.S.-style electoral system. In response, Cuba should insist that the United States pay more attention to social rights, including providing universal health care to all of its residents.

Obama recognized that a fifty-year policy of regime change in Cuba never worked. Missouri senator Roy Blunt criticized Obama for changing policy on Cuba in the “waning days” of the Castro brothers. That is is the type of rhetoric that drove a failed United States policy since before the current president was born. Hopefully we are living in the waning days of politicians like Blunt, and we can now move toward a more logical, rational, and healthy foreign policy toward Cuba.

Marc Becker teaches Latin American history at Truman State University. He travels to Cuba on February 7 to document political changes in the aftermath of the normalization of relations with the United States, and will report on the trip in the next issue of The Monitor.

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Letter to the Editor from John Dobson

I refer to the Article “A DULCE DECORUM PARADOX”, written by my nephew, Lawrence (Larry) Iles, which I understand you have recently published.
I wish to put the record straight as follows:-
1) In the section of the Article relating to my father, JOHN DENNIS DOBSON, Mr Iles refers to a manuscript.  This manuscript was in fact composed by Commander Stephen King-Hall, then a navel lieutenant serving on HMS SOUTHAMPTON, a light cruiser, during the battle of Jutland.  This manuscript was given to my father, a writer (secretary) in the Royal Navy, to type up AFTER the Battle.
Some items included in the said paper were referred to in “A NORTH SEA DIARY” 1914-1918, written and later published by Stephen King-Hall.
2) I have a copy of my father’s World War 1 service record (ex National Archives) which clearly shows that he NEVER SERVED on HMS Southampton and therefore could not have composed the paper, with its detailed references to the battle.
3) The service record also proves that, at the time of the Jutland Battle, my father’s ship was HMS CRESCENT, a cruiser of the Edgar Class, which was a DEPOT ship based at Rosyth and which took NO PART in the Jutland conflict.
I have continually asserted in writing to Lawrence that my father merely typed up King-Hall’s paper and was certainly NOT the author of it.  My father made this clear to me, well before Lawrence was even born.  However, Mr Iles has consistently refused to accept my assurances on this.
I shall be grateful if you will make clear that the ‘manuscript’ references by Lawrence Iles were based on a ‘misunderstanding’ of the facts, as any basic historical research would have confirmed.
Yours truly
John L Dobson

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Wrongdaddy’s by Alex Wennerberg

After walking from another bar at 12:45 AM, Ben, with Sidney, Leela, Emily and Kyle, handed his driver’s license to an employee behind a black counter, then walked inside Wrongdaddy’s. Nearly every surface in the dimly lit bar was black and punctuated by bright, wildly traveling dots of colored light. The dance floor and elevated, smaller dance floor, was on the east side of the room, with a large area of no dancing separating them from the bar. The fast-moving bartenders wore brightly colored clothing that glowed under black lights. “Do you wanna go dance?” asked Emily. “One sec,” said Ben. The room was crowded and Ben had to touch people in order to get from most places to most other places. In the bathroom someone said, “If you remember what you did five minutes ago, you should go back to Dukum” to his friend and Ben gazed at graffiti. He heard muffled rap music bass loudly playing through the walls. He went back to the room and found Emily and two other people dancing in a vague circle on the dance floor. Music pulsed loudly filling the air like a large, invisible heart. He jumped up and down and held the back of his head with his right hand and closed his eyes. After an amount of time, he noticed that Emily wasn’t there anymore and that he didn’t know any of the probably dozens of people within his field of vision. He felt as though he had “lost himself” in the music in a manner that was maybe anxiety inducing or maybe good and felt his body tingle a little. He thought about how music was a physical thing, and he was a physical thing, which made them the same, because of waves, or something. He walked around the bar dancing more to the music and hopping until he saw Leela and Sidney, whom Ben was probably closer with than anyone else at the bar. He asked with open excitement, “How’s it going?” Sidney said, “This place is terrible.” Leela said something and Ben responded automatically. He sat down and looked at the people on the dance floor moving up and down approximately to the beat of the music. He watched a guy approach a girl from behind, grinding his hips on her before she looked from side to side and walked forward, then towards other people. One of Ben’s friends, Kyle, performed this maneuver, more tentatively and slightly arched over, on a few girls. Ben watched long haired people’s hair move anarchically as they danced. Periodically the smoke machine spat out a clumsy blob of smoke which expanded through the room, then disappeared. Ben saw Jennie on the elevated portion of the dance floor and texted her “I see u,” in response to a text she sent twenty minutes ago saying Wrongdaddy’s was lame. A few minutes later he found himself talking to Leela about the high school they both attended. “I was a huge nerd in high school” “Me too” “I didn’t even have my first kiss until I was in college. I just did school,” she said with an emotion Ben understood but couldn’t categorize. Ben said something in agreement while Leela said something else about high school. She talked fast and with a lot of hand movement. Ben looked at the lint on his clothing, which glowed under black light and made him very uncomfortable, or maybe excited. At some point they became separated and Ben found Emily. They went onto the elevated dance floor and said hi to Kyle, who replied in a loud monotone. Music filled the spaces in the conversation. Kyle said something, which Ben ignored. He found Jennie and said hi. She talked close into his right ear, so her cheek was close to his cheek and her hair, if she didn’t brush it back before leaning forward, which she didn’t usually, was in his face, tickling a little. A few people danced in his peripheral vision. Jennie said he should probably unfriend on Facebook her friend Austin, who was “an asshole” according to Leela, Sidney and Emily, and was posting on several of Jennie’s friends’ facebook walls asking about their penis size. Ben said he had already unfriended him earlier. “Good,” said Jennie. They talked a bit more until Ben ran into Emily, who asked if he wanted to do a shot. “Sure,” he said, and they started walking through people and around black tables made of metal grating towards the bar. While walking he thought about how a hundred years in the future or past, everyone in the room would be dead. Emily started getting out her wallet, and Ben said “No. It’s on me.” And handed her a $5 bill, reaching over a stranger, saying that she should buy “whatever she could” with that money. Ben stared at the sentence “I’m not slurring my words, I’m just talking in cursive” written on a mirror behind the bar and heard the music, which played like something falling over. Emily said she knew the bartender so she could get a pretty good deal, and they both drank pink-ish liquid which was very sweet while Ben watched Emily’s banter with the bartender. The walked a few feet towards Sindey and Leela, squeezed together around a crowd of people. While talking, they moved out of the way three or four times for employees trying to get into the bar before moving somewhere else. Ben started dancing and Leela danced very close to Ben, which severely confused him, especially as he stopped and stood still, rubbing and blinking his eyes. His vision was distorted and alien in a way that felt maybe comedic. Ben said hi to Jennie and they talked for a while. He asked Emily where Leela and Sidney went. “I think they went home,” she said. “Are you sure? What if they went to Geno’s” “No they were talking about going home.” They walked to the bar, where Jacey pointed at him and made a sound that communicated that she was going to buy him a $1 shot. He took the shot and failed to approximate with his hands how much he drank this night. “Did Leela and Sidney leave?” Ben asked Emily. “Yeah, I think so.” Music surrounded him like something soft. A few minutes later they left the bar, and Ben took Emily to his house, where she was going to stay in his roommate’s bed, where they talked, before Ben declared that he was going to walk to Sidney’s house to see Leela and them. He locked the front door and walked five blocks to Sidney’s house and entered without knocking. He said hi to Miranda, who was sober, on her laptop in a small chair, Leela, who was lying with her eyes closed on a loveseat-sized couch and Sidney, who was on top of her, with their arms and heads intertwined. Leela mumbled something and Sidney laughed. Sidney said something about how she felt good and pushed marijuana into a glass pipe with her thumb. Ben laid on the ground, his face into a pillow, watching and listening to whatever was on the TV, and his arms and legs spread out in a starfish-like manner. He read Kyle’s tweet about how he was sad that he felt sexually unattractive and hadn’t had sex in six months. Ben woke up two hours later, at 3:30 A.M., to a room empty except for Leela: curled up into a semi-fetal position, lying on the loveseat-chair, in a red cardigan, twenty-three years old and asleep. He stood up, used the bathroom, walked five blocks back to his house, poured himself a glass of water, texted Jennie and went to sleep.

Alex Wennerberg wants you to play on his Minecraft server

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