Going Postal Discussion *Spoilers*

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Postby poohbcarrot » Tue Sep 08, 2009 10:28 pm

Aha! I knew the old "misquote-and-look-like-a-buffoon" trick would bring Tina back! :lol:

(:oops: Whoops! But it still doesn't change my point.)
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Postby poohbcarrot » Tue Sep 08, 2009 11:19 pm

'ere Dotsie! The last 2 pages of chapter 6 don't 'arf remind me of you! :lol:
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Postby Trish » Wed Sep 09, 2009 2:22 am

Sjoerd3000 wrote:Moist is not like Gilt, maybe in some ways but in some important ways he is clearly not. Gilt doesn't mind if somebody has to be killed to get at the money (Horsefry for example) Moist is very bothered by the fact that Pump thinks he killed 2,3 people. Moist never used weapons and he never killed anyone to get at the money and in the end Moist stays on the right path.



You may have guessed that I have no patience with this stuff. Scale doesn't matter.
Two things that happened.

First.
18 mos ago, I ordered 6 custom budd wheels for my motorhome from a company in Maryland.
$17-hundred-something. I paid up front with a money order.

The wheels came. They were 5-bolt, not 6 and were 19.5", not 17.5".

Owner apologized, wah-wah. Could or would not give me a firm date on new wheels. His original date of July 15, 08 was a joke --I didn't get the 'wrong wheels until Aug 25, 08. So I'm really going to give him more time. Right.

Long story short, he stiffed me out of $765. I raised so much hell I actually managed to get $1000. of my own money returned to me.
What a guy.

Second.
Rewind a few years. My mother, god love her, was good at guessing markets. She sucked at picking stockbrokers.

She had this one. Sleazy, smarmy, oily bugger.
I did nop like him and my dad didn't like him, either, but oh hey, he's a nice guy.

When Peg died, I had to go through all her papers. I knew we had lost some $$ in the dot-com-noise. I was looking for life insurance, stocks from Daddy, the stuff you accumulate.

What I found were 13 cancelled checks for $89, 890.00.
That's almost 90thousand dollars.
Made out IN the broker's name BY the broker himself and cashed jointly by him and his wife.


So, it's ok to con for little amounts, but not big ones.
It's ok to con "if they have enough."
Maybe it's ok to con if it's for a luxury purpose like custom wheels or if you're taking money from someone who invests --hey, they oughtta know better, it's a risk!


The only difference is scale.
We are out a LOT of cash. We are hurting BAD.
Some creep like Moist, even a literary character, is slime.
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Postby poohbcarrot » Wed Sep 09, 2009 3:06 am

Moist Von Lipwig was born on a small farm to honest and hard-working parents. When he was very young he had a love for animals, especially dogs, cats and horses.

One year, when he was eight, there was a bad harvest and the farm was repossessed by a greedy and uncaring bank, in order to sell it to a property developer. When his parents tried to complain they were ruthlessly killed by the bank's hired thugs.

Moist was put in an orphanage, not dissimilar to the one in Monstrous Regiment. He was regularly beaten and abused, but learnt how to con people from the other kids in the orphanage. He also learnt how to get on with people, because failure to do so would have resulted in his almost certain death.

When he was 14, after recovering from a particularly nasty beating, he ran away from the orphanage to try and make his own way in the world. His only talent was in conning people, so "Moist Von Lipwig" disappeared and was replaced by a string of aliases.

It was never a love of money, or greed that made him cheat banks, but a lust for revenge for his parents' deaths.

He was eventually caught when he was cornered by a 75 year-old part-time bank security guard. He could have easily fought his way out, but he was against all forms of violence and he knew his parents wouldn't have approved, so he gave himself up.

So at the tender age of 26, an age when most people are still trying to find out who they really are in the world, he found himself with a noose round his neck on an AM gallows.

Despite not having had any love since the age of 8, he still managed to become a person with a positive and optimistic outlook on life.

How can you not love him?
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Postby mspanners » Wed Sep 09, 2009 9:24 am

Sorry I am late to this discussion group ( Again! ) but not sure where poohbcarrot got all this info from about Moist, been listening to the Audio book in the bath at Night (to busy/knackered to read my hard copy) and can't recall most of what is said about Moist early life...... is this in the book? I have the UNABRIDGED audio book..... :?:
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Postby Tonyblack » Wed Sep 09, 2009 9:35 am

:lol: He's making it up to make Moist a more sympathetic character. We know very little about Moist's early life other than he was brought up by his grandfather who bred dogs.

Going back to an earlier post - in part this book is about second chances. Vetinari gives Moist the chance to do something good with his life and while the Patrician is an unlikely angel, he does the job quite nicely.

Let's make no mistake here, Moist had two choices - he either shaped up or he was a dead man. He was useful to Vetinari in that the Patrician wanted to get to the heart of the corruption in the Grand Trunk (he'd already tried using his clerks and business men with no success) and Moist was the man for the job.

Question - do you seriously think that Vetinari thought that Gilt would take the job he was offered at the end of the book? :?
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Postby Sjoerd3000 » Wed Sep 09, 2009 10:01 am

Well knowing Vetinari he should have known that Gilt wouldn´t take the job but that´s no reason not to offer him a choice (and it saved a bit of rope). Afterall you can always give someone hope.
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Postby poohbcarrot » Wed Sep 09, 2009 10:33 am

Tonyblack wrote:
poohbcarrot wrote:"4 miles an hour is 672 miles a week".

4 x 24 x 7 = 672

4 x 24 x 8 = 768
You are not taking into account that the golems have a day off a week. :P :wink:


Nice try Tony, but Vetinari says, "And Mr Pump, Postmaster General, does not stop" (not my italics!)

However, if there were 21 hours to a Discworld then;

4 x 21 x 8 = 672

Unfortunately, at the end of Guards Guards Carrot says "12 o'clock and all is well"

So there can't be only 21 hours. 8)
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Postby Jan Van Quirm » Wed Sep 09, 2009 10:58 am

See - that's why I think Moist is similar to Vetinari in the manipulation department - except Moist isn't as good at it, possibly because he's still on a huge learning curve to start looking at the bigger picture. Hence my remarks about him being self-obsessed most of the time and only interested in saving his own skin, in the beginning certainly.

The reason that I say Vetinari is similar to Moist (and pooh's lovely little background fairy story for Moist will support this somewhat :shock: ) is that Vetinari is actually an impoverished trained killer come 'good' (even if he didn't graduate from the Assassin's Guild and never killed anyone professionally as it were...) due to the interest of his Aunt 'turning' him onto the path of power and into an absolute grandmaster politician and strategist.

Gilt for a time is 'superior' to Vetinari in terms of ruthlessness, power and influence in that he's like the Vetinari who never came good and this is why I think Vetinari was calmly afraid of Gilt's potential to seriously screw A-M over and why he chose to 'tempt' Moist - an embryonic Vetinari/Gilt (depending on his choice and his conscience), to the path of righteousness and in the process become a clever useful manipulator instead of a clever amoral one.

It's a case of a masterly ex-thief (of lives) setting a promising but strictly 'small time' thief to catch a monstrous killer thief.

Notice also I use the term of thief not 'con artist' for Moist - con artists are merely 'posh' and contemptible thieves who of course steal money but also trust and dreams in broad daylight and right under your nose. The 'diamonds' are a good touch though... :wink:
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Postby Dotsie » Wed Sep 09, 2009 11:41 am

poohbcarrot wrote:'ere Dotsie! The last 2 pages of chapter 6 don't 'arf remind me of you! :lol:


Cheeky! It reminds me of me as well though... :? Till I met Mr Dotsie :D and then I said 'yes please, dinner would be lovely' :D
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Postby poohbcarrot » Wed Sep 09, 2009 12:36 pm

Jan Van Quirm wrote: I think Vetinari was calmly afraid of Gilt's potential to seriously screw A-M over


Disagree 100% with you there, Jan.

As soon as Vetinari met Gilt, Vetinari not only knew he would beat him, but also knew why he would beat him, and he knew how he would beat him.

I'll post my reasons soon.
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Postby Tonyblack » Wed Sep 09, 2009 1:07 pm

Vetinari could have gone in and arrested everyone and had them executed. He doesn't need to obey any rules or laws because, as he mentions several times in the book - he is a tyrant.

But it suits him to let Moist go in and expose them - that way he can go in and take over without being criticised. People are left feeling justice has been served rather than Government has interfered with trade.

And as we see throughout the book - Vetinari like playing games. :wink:
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Postby poohbcarrot » Wed Sep 09, 2009 1:44 pm

Tonyblack wrote:And as we see throughout the book - Vetinari like playing games. :wink:


This is my favourite bit of the book. It's so subtle, it's absolutely brilliant.

The first time Vetinari meets Gilt and they're talking about Thud, Vetinari tells Gilt he is ruthless and going to lose because he will be careless. He is going to be careless because he doesn't know his own weaknesses. He doesn't know his own weaknesses because he can't play the Dwarves. Gilt's description of the dwarves is an exact description of Moist.

"We should play a game", said Gilt. "I have a rather nice board myself. I play the troll side, for preference."
"Ruthless, intially outnumbered, inevitably defeated in the hands of a careless player?", said Vetinari.
"Indeed. Just as the dwarves rely on guile, feint, and swift changes of position. A man can learn all of an opponent's weaknesses on that board," said Gilt.
"Really?", said Vetinari, raising his eyebrows. "Should he not be trying to learn his own?"

Guile = "The use of clever but dishonest behaviour in order to deceive people."
Feint = "A movement that is intended to make your opponent think you are going to do one thing when you are really going to do something else."

If Gilt knew how to play Thud correctly (ie; first play trolls, then play dwarves), he might not have lost to Moist.

To Vetinari, it's all just one big game.
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Postby Tonyblack » Wed Sep 09, 2009 1:48 pm

Perfectly put! :D Yes, you really do have to go back and reread Terry's books to see these things.
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Postby Jan Van Quirm » Wed Sep 09, 2009 2:27 pm

poohbcarrot wrote:
Jan Van Quirm wrote: I think Vetinari was calmly afraid of Gilt's potential to seriously screw A-M over


Disagree 100% with you there, Jan.

As soon as Vetinari met Gilt, Vetinari not only knew he would beat him, but also knew why he would beat him, and he knew how he would beat him.

I'll post my reasons soon.


So flippin' literal :roll: Next thing you'll be convincing yourself of is that Vetinari's some super-computing Golem or 'Mentat-alike' from Dune *puffs*

'Calmly afraid' does not mean Vetinari's shaking in his boots but it equally and certainly doesn't mean he can't feel fear because if he did then he'd be the Terminator ,because he couldn't appreciate threats in terms of a human being and therefore his strategy vis a vis ruling A-M would always be flawed.

Vetinari, like Moist and absolutely unlike Gilt is a people person but a very, very shrewd and dispassionate one because he can put emotion aside and so uses his skill rationally in his style of manipulation to predict and know what people's moves will be - and yes of course he plays games - that's the nature of politics in the multi-verse after all.

Where Vetinari excels is in assessing problems from all sides and in the Grand Trunk scenario he is well aware of Gilt's shortcomings, but also that he could win at the stage where Vetinari takes a gamble in putting Moist (the dwarf yes :wink: ) into play because up until that point all his usual gambits haven't been paying off because he wasn't using the right spies/agent provocateur/pawns.

How does 'worried' sit with you? - that is perhaps the word I should have used along with calm, but the other thing that Vetinari's good at is trusting in himself and his abilities. At that first meeting Gilt has the upper hand and knows it and so does Vetinari. That's why he's the best and knows when and who to play and is never, never careless. But that doesn't mean he can't feel the odd tinge of anxiety - humans have hormonal and emotional stimuli for a reason and thats why the thought of robots/Golems/Terminators are so scary because they only have software and irrefutable logic. They don't have impulse or irrational spontaneity. Vetinari in that respect is 'Golemic' because he never loses control of his emotions but he does knows how that feels even if he doesn't act on those impulses - he gets someone who does instead - Moist in this case. :wink:

Your reasons are impeccable and correct - but you're wrong about Vetinari being a block of wood emotionally and/or intellectually.
Last edited by Jan Van Quirm on Wed Sep 09, 2009 4:24 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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