April 29th, 2017| Topic: RaMbLeS | 0


I don’t know if you’ve noticed it, but whenever the rotund despot of North Korea, Kim Jong-un, makes site visits, he is surrounded by highly bling-ed military officers, all carrying tiny notebooks in which they are manically scribbling.

What in the world was going on, I wondered.

He’s watching women conducting a rocket launching drill. Notebooks and pencils. He rolls around a fishery station. Notebooks and pencils. He gives lackeys a pep talk. Notebooks and pencils. He takes in the facilities at a renovated youth camp. Notebooks and pencils.

Everyone around the mad guy—and no they aren’t journalists—is scribbling. All the time!

Explained Professor James Grayson, Korea expert at the University of Sheffield:

What is happening is a demonstration of the leader’s supposed power, knowledge, wisdom and concern. It’s ‘on-the-spot guidance,’ something instigated by his grandfather Kim Il-sung in the 1950s. It’s part of the image of the great leader offering benevolent guidance.”

What kind of guidance, you ask? Kim’s grandfather once visited a fishery in 1976, and the Korean Central News Agency told the world what Kim Il-sung had said:

Watching a truck at work, the president said that its bucket seemed to be small in comparison with its horsepower. He said the problem of carriage would be solved if the bucket was enlarged. Afterwards the truck’s bucket capacity increased to two tons from 800 kg. As a result, 20 trucks were capable of carrying the load to be done by 50 trucks.”

Potent stuff. Profound.

Noted Grayson:

These are pictures that will be broadcast on television and shown in the state media, so those who are there want to be seen recording Kim Jong-un’s every word. It’s about presenting him as having broad knowledge—however, it’s ridiculous, he can’t possibly know about all of these different things. It’s important, however, that the apparatchiks that surround him are seen to be hanging on his every word.”

There’s even a Wikipedia article: “On-the-spot-guidance”!

We have no means of knowing what exactly these exalted leaders actually said. Those notebooks aren’t available for public scrutiny, of course.

According to Prof Steve Tsang, Chair the School of Contemporary Chinese Studies at the University of Nottingham:

If anything comes out of them, it would be via the propaganda department. Whether it was what was actually said, or is different to the guidance given at the time, doesn’t matter. No one will ever question it.”

John Everard, Britain’s former ambassador to Pyongyang, echoed these sentiments:

This is a longstanding North Korean tradition. In the presence of the Leader, even senior officials make a show of recording every pearl of wisdom. Apart from demonstrating loyalty, such jottings can be politically useful. Every thought of the Leader is infallible, and can be quoted as authority in internal political debates—so getting such scripture at source confers an advantage.”

Scripture! Ah, now there’s guidance for you.

Your word is very pure, Therefore Your servant loves it.
Psalm 119:140

Your word is a lamp to my feet And a light to my path.
Psalm 119:105

The sum of Your word is truth, And every one of Your righteous ordinances is everlasting.
Psalm 119:160

The unfolding of Your words gives light; It gives understanding to the simple.
Psalm 119:130

How sweet are Your words to my taste! Yes, sweeter than honey to my mouth!
Psalm 119:103

Your word I have treasured in my heart, That I may not sin against You.
 Psalm 119:11

Therefore I love Your commandments Above gold, yes, above fine gold.
Psalm 119:127

Notebooks and pencils, everybody!

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