Thursday, September 25, 2014

The Daily Dissembler: Last Issue For The Spring 1902 Turn


The Daily Dissembler, Special European Gazette Issue, February 10, 1902

We make sense of a complicated, far-off world so you, dear reader, can enjoy the Gilded Age.

The Current Situation

Some of our readers have requested a graphic showing the status of Europe, and those Minor Powers now under the influence, Benign or Otherwise, of the Great Powers.  We are happy to oblige.

Dateline Germany.  Wanted: Good Horsemen


The government of the Kaiser is seeking skilled horsemen of a reliable and sober character for employment as diplomatic couriers. Payment is at a generous bonus above current market rates. Horses are provided as are hosteling and victualling costs (beer ration included!). 

An excellent opportunity for adventurous young men to travel to all corners of the continent while in the service of the most prestigious and enlightened government in Europe.

Riding skill will be tested and character references from three (3) known men of note and standing are required. Literacy not required or desirable. Former men of the cloth need not apply.

Applications accepted at most Embassies. Signing bonus if you tell your recruiter: "The Dissembler sent me!"

Britain's Home Office Issues Communiqué: “No Fighting in Low Countries"
First, the German Foreign Office claimed that last fall’s Battle of Amsterdam (extensively documented by this paper) was merely a scuffle between rival football fans.   Now, the British Government is saying that there was not even a scuffle.    In an official communique released yesterday, London states that "The recent aggression reported in the Low Countries did not actually occur and is attributed to a desire by the Dutch to draw attention to their country and its claim to be the cockpit of Europe.”  This paper contacted the Dutch Government seeking a comment.  Mr. Van Huytens, a spokesman for the Dutch Foreign Ministry, told us that the British communique is “Poppycock.  We have been trying to serve both London and Berlin with demands for reparations for ten million guilders to repair the damage they caused, and all we get are 'Sorry, love, I’m just the cleaner’.  It’s totally irresponsible for so-called major powers to behave in this fashion. "

In the same communique from London, the Home Office stated that "The Scottish army that was trying to leave has now voted to remain in the UK and has been put on a better course, together with no immediate travel plans."

Scottish “football fans” appear pleased to remain in the UK.


New Warships Are Turkish Delight


The Daily Dissembler has obtained this schematic of one of the warships recently delivered to the Turkish navy.   She is the Mejidye, built here in the good old US of A by Keels and Deals Inc. Naval Architects, Bangor, Maine.

The motto of this firm is “Getting sunk is a pain, Just ask Spain.  The choice is plain, buy your navy from Maine.”   However, this purchase may be a pain for the McKinley Administration, since the firm of Keels and Deals has been extensively subsidized by US Government assistance.  Senator (R) Thurston P. Grafton of Maine defended this assistance, saying that “Wanting to keep jobs in Maine, as well as ensuring America’s capability of building state of the art naval weapons systems in a dangerous world, is a laudable goal”.   This paper is currently investigating allegations that the Senator’s reelection campaign was largely financed by donations from Keels and Deals.  As well, the paper is looking into reports that Senator Grafton spent much of the winter in Turkey, being put up in five star hotels in Constantinople at the expense of American and Turkish taxpayers.  The Senator’s office defends the trip, saying that the Senator and his aides were conducing “Hands on research, investigating whether the Turkish belly dancing industry includes American girls sold into white slavery”.

Letters to the Editor


Certain intolerable reports have come to my attention indicating that your “man” (I will not grace him with the dubious title of reporter) in Rome, Mr. Ernest Harrington, has been spreading vile calumnies, unfit to be stated in polite company, as to the character and choice of companions of my niece, Miss Amelia Roosevelt, whose insightful columns are read most widely here in the US, from the Oval Office to the humblest of parlours.   I need not belabour the fact that Miss Roosevelt, “Intrepid Girl Reporter”, is widely seen as a paragon of American femininity in this new century and has millions of admirers here at home.   I also need not remind you that the Daily Dissembler has attained its current enviable reputation thanks to the willingness of this government to give it free access to the White House, the Cabinet, and to councils of state, and that it would be a shame for your readers should this access be reluctantly curtailed for security reasons.   Finally, let me make it plain that should Mr. Harrington show his cur’s face in Washington, I shall personally, and with the greatest of satisfaction, roll up my sleeves and horsewhip him all the way to Delaware.

Yours sincerely,

Theodore Roosevelt, Vice-President, United States


I am writing to you to determine the whereabouts of  Miss Amilia Roosevelt.   The impulsive young signorina, against my advice, has left Trieste without informing me or my staff of her intentions, and without filing the travel documents necessary for movement within the Liberated Zone.   Despite the best efforts of my soldiers, the countryside is not safe because of partisans, bandits, and assorted Hapsburg dead enders.  These will be dealt with soon enough, but I tremble for Caro Amilia’s safety, the poor tender flower!  I cannot fathom why she would have left without discussing her plans with me, and in the dead of night, too!   If you learn of her whereabouts, pray inform me, as I have several small gifts I would send her.  It is nothing elaborate, merely some small items taken from the occupying Governor’s palace as trophies of my victory here, a few small odds and ends such as an Aubusson carpet, several Irish wolfhounds, a Ming dynasty vase, a set of armour which once belonged to Charles II of Austria, and a darling little yacht … mere trifles, really, but sincere tokens of my admiration of a true flower of American womanhood.

I remain your servant,

Count de Graspi, Generale di Brigata and Commander, Italian Expeditionary Forces, Lion of Trieste, Order of the Risorgimento

Crossword, by Our Mystery Correspondent, “Elgar” - some enlarging may be necessary.


  1. I an enjoying your Dissembler reports

    1. Glad to hear it. The DD has become a slightly odd labour of love on my part, with some willing accomplices. :)


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