The resurgence of Unspiek, Baron Bodissey

One of the startling things to come out of the mass murder in Norway is that a source for the killer's manifestos was a blogger who writes under the name of "Baron Bodissey".

This is insider baseball indeed, akin to naming a housing development Undle Square. "Baron Bodissey" provides the epigraphs to various chapters in the works of Jack Vance, most particularly the Demon Princes novels.  The first two of those, The Star King and The Killing Machine, were particular favorites of mine in my youth. Given the Baron's pompous, elephant-picking-up-a-pea style, he seems an odd choice for someone supposedly providing real political commentary.

But, behind his own light and frothy style, Vance often engaged in fictional mass murder and even genocide--the event that starts the long vengeance of Kirth Gersen in the Demon Princes novels is, after all, the Mount Pleasant Massacre. So perhaps this points a way to seeing the way style can direct the uninformed eye away from content.

Like anyone else, the Baron has a Wikipedia page.