Dear Reader,

National pride is having a renaissance. In the US a shmock was elected president with the slogan “Make America great again”.  How much of a shmock is he? Well, just check, where the slogan came from here, it (quote)

is a campaign slogan used in American politics that originated with the Ronald Reagan campaign of 1980.

And the UK went bonkers and voted to leave the EU. The motivation there too can be summarized with national pride. How successful has national pride been for the UK? As an example check the history of “Made in Germany” here,

The label was originally introduced in Britain by the Merchandise Marks Act 1887, to mark foreign produce more obviously, as foreign manufactures had been falsely marking inferior goods with the marks of renowned British manufacturing companies and importing them into the United Kingdom. …

Germany successfully leveraged the Made in Germany tag as a brand synonymous of product reliability and quality.

Oh, that worked well. Just not for the UK.

So, who needs national pride and why? Someone a lot smarter than me, Arthur Schopenhauer answered these questions:

On the other hand, the cheapest form of pride is national pride; for the man affected therewith betrays a want of individual qualities of which he might be proud, since he would not otherwise resort to that which he shares with so many millions.

The man who possesses outstanding personal qualities will rather see most clearly the faults of his own nation, for he has them constantly before his eyes.

But every miserable fool, who has nothing in the world whereof he could be proud, resorts finally to being proud of the very nation to which he belongs. In this he finds compensation and is now ready and thankful to defend, … all the faults and follies peculiar to it.

From ‘Parerga and Paralipomena’, Vol. 1, Aphorisms on the Wisdom of Life, ‘What A Man Represents’

National pride gives me shivers. It was one driving force behind both world wars.

Ask yourself, don’t you have anything better to be proud of?

I am certain, you do.

Stay sane,

Engine Room

Pikaja Rossa

Dear Reader,

Diablog is about the good things in life, and here is one more.

Since it is cold, winter, gets dark early, this is the best time for a great red wine, enjoyed at the fireplace.

If you have been following diablog a bit, you know I love Amarone. Amarone has grown in popularity, and the retail prices have gone up steadily. At the same time, the quality has gone down. Sometimes I wonder, how much Amarone is in those bottles offered by popular vineyards for $30+ a piece?

Last year a friend, suffering the same problem, found a treasure. On a trip to Italy he discovered a winery, producing a red wine “Amarone style”. Meaning, it isn’t an Amarone, but the grapes are matured the same way.

This is it, Pikaja Rossa:




And this is the website of the producer:

My friend bought 20 cases. That’s how good this is. And he paid 30% of what a normal Amarone costs at your local retailer.

The wine is heavy, 16.5% alcohol, and absolutely delicious. I love it.


Engine Room