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Book Review

The Art of Deception, by Nicholas Capaldi.  Rev. ed.  Prometheus Books, 1987 [original edition 1971].

(Editorial note: I cannot say for sure how the following review epistle came into my possession.  I share it here with this intent: Let the reader beware--the book mentioned is dangerous material!)

My dear Wormheart:

Let me inform you, my devilish apprentice, of a glorious book available for your enrichment and instruction from one of our Master's presses in the Middle world.  (Isn't it interesting that in the old human myths Prometheus is the titan who gave fire to humankind, a disobedience that incurred the wrath of the gods.  Some things never change!)  A human named Capaldi, who is very secure in our Father's house, has offered several principles of debate to try to deceive our Enemy above and his unfortunate "followers."  May they be deceived!

Consider this delicious passage from Capaldi's book:

"Given a sympathetic audience, you can always find some explanation as to why the opposition is so stupid and save yourself the trouble of having to deal logically with its arguments."

Another is desperately wicked:

"Now if your opponent's success is owing to his use of techniques of deception, such as those we are discussing, you can probably win points by exposing this fact and accusing him (more or less gently) of being a trickster.  But if your audience is so dimwitted that it would not see what you are driving at, you should stick to using the deceptive tricks yourself[!]."

And this last one serves as a constant reminder:

"Remember, all of your opponent's arguments can be shown to be defective.  It is simply a question of your ingenuity and persistence."

As you can see, Nephew, this man has succinctly expressed Our Father's main directive: Win at any cost!  How delightful has this human reminded us of that fine scripture-twisted adage that we live by: Do unto others before they do unto you!

Well, I warmly recommend this book to you, knowing that it can benefit you in your training to become more like our Infernal Master below.  Those weak-minded "faithful" followers of the accursed Enemy always have his words with them.  Do all within your puny power to keep them from their "holy Scripture."  Perhaps whisper if you can to them that this human's book is a suitable replacement for that awful statement about turning the other cheek and walking a second mile.  Blasted!  That Enemy of ours always has the advantage of having been incarnate!  Give the Enemy's people Capaldi's book any way you can, and they will finally get a taste of eternal life in our Master's Kingdom below.  Long live deception!

Warmest infernal greetings,

Uncle Scarecrow

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