Make a Donation

Consider making a donation to support SHAKSPER.

Subscribe to Our Feeds

Current Postings RSS

Announcements RSS

Home :: Archive :: 2009 :: August ::
What is Hamlet's flaw?
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 20.0418  Friday, 31 July 2009

[1] From:   Edmund Taft <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
     Date:   Saturday, July 25, 2009 12:22 AM
     Subj:   What is Hamlet's Tragic Flaw

[2] From:   JD Markel <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
     Date:   Thursday, 30 Jul 2009 19:08:06 -0700 (PDT)
     Subj:   Re: SHK 20.0416 What is Hamlet's flaw?

[3] From:   Michele Marrapodi <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
     Date:   Friday, 31 Jul 2009 11:14:31 +0100
     Subj:   Re: SHK 20.0416 What is Hamlet's flaw?

[4] From:   Jim Ryan <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
     Date:   Friday, 31 Jul 2009 10:09:44 -0400
     Subj:   Hamlet's flaw

[5] From:   John Drakakis <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
     Date:   Friday, 31 Jul 2009 15:22:53 +0100
     Subj:   RE: SHK 20.0416 What is Hamlet's flaw?

[6] From:   David Basch <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
     Date:   Friday, 31 Jul 2009 12:52:56 -0400
     Subj:   Re: SHK 20.0416 What is Hamlet's flaw?

[7] From:   Eric Johnson-DeBaufre <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
     Date:   Friday, 31 Jul 2009 15:00:58 -0400
     Subj:   Re: SHK 20.0416 What is Hamlet's flaw?

[8] From:   David Bishop <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
     Date:   Friday, 31 Jul 2009 20:13:42 -0400
     Subj:   Re: SHK 20.0416 What is Hamlet's flaw?

[9] From:   Michael Saenger <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
     Date:   Friday, 31 Jul 2009 22:58:16 -0500
     Subj:   What is Hamlet's Tragic Flaw?


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:       Edmund Taft <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
Date:       Saturday, July 25, 2009 12:22 AM
Subject:    What is Hamlet's Tragic Flaw

I'm surprised that no one so far has mentioned the native tradition of 
tragedy, as evinced in the mystery play cycles. The best example would 
be Pilot, who is caught between a rock and a hard place. He wants to let 
Jesus go; he knows the man is innocent of any wrongdoing, but he has a 
hard time saying so for political reasons. He  "washes his hands" of the 
problem, but it just won't go away.

In effect, Shakespeare builds on this idea of putting a person in a 
difficult or impossible situation and then testing him in both _Julius 
Caesar_ and _Hamlet_  --  both written close together (1599/ 1600-1601). 
Brutus has flaws, but no one can do what Brutus is called upon to do: 
predict how a man will act once in power  --  especially if the power is 
nearly absolute. That's the essence of his tragedy.

The same is true for Hamlet. He is called upon by a supernatural force 
to kill Claudius, but he can't know whether that force is good 
(representing God's Will) or evil (his father in hell or perhaps a 
devil). Yet, like Brutus, Hamlet feels compelled to act -- in the end, 
anyway.

Hamlet has flaws, but the essence of the tragedy is the impossible 
situation in which the protagonist finds himself.

Of all the posts so far, I feel that Joe Egert and Steve Sohmer are 
closest to the bottom line of _Hamlet_. Steve notes that Hamlet has a 
conscience: yes, and that's why he delays for so long. Yet after 4.4, 
his conscience begins to change, e.g., R&G. Joe observes that Hamlet's 
father may not be all he's cracked up to be: right again!  And Hamlet's 
father and his Medieval/classical view of honor is not really Christian. 
Yet Hamlet must adopt his father's (and Fortinbras's) notion of honor if 
he is to do the deed. So "How all occasions do inform against me," 
4.4.33ff.,  is the beginning of the end for the prince.

Ed Taft

[2]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:       JD Markel <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
Date:       Thursday, 30 Jul 2009 19:08:06 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: 20.0416 What is Hamlet's flaw?
Comment:    Re: SHK 20.0416 What is Hamlet's flaw?

"Duck season. Wabbit season! [etc. etc.] Fire!"  *

* Maltese, M., "Rabbit Fire" (Warner Bros. 1950)

[3]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:       Michele Marrapodi <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
Date:       Friday, 31 Jul 2009 11:14:31 +0100
Subject: 20.0416 What is Hamlet's flaw?
Comment:    Re: SHK 20.0416 What is Hamlet's flaw?

Textually speaking, the killing of Polonius is Hamlet's only mistake -- 
it is his _hamartia_, for in taking on the new role of "scourge and 
minister", he assumes the ambivalent nature of a divine agent, whose 
desire to punish also falls upon those who are guilty of complicity, 
having collaborated with the forces of evil.

In a famous essay Fredson Bowers expresses the opinion that Hamlet's 
self-identification in the dual role of "scourge and minister" is 
irreconcilable. According to Bowers, "we may see with full force the 
anomalous position Hamlet conceives for himself: is he to be the 
private-revenger scourge or the public-revenger minister?". Bowers 
concludes that Hamlet's behaviour is twofold: in this scene he takes a 
private revenge and therefore acts as "scourge", while in Act V, when he 
appears to be guided by a superior will, he becomes a "minister of God" 
who has to purify himself through an "expiatory death":

"Hamlet is not only punished for the murder of Polonius but with his 
murder, since Polonius was not his assigned victim; hence this fact is 
the evidence for Heaven's displeasure at his private revenge. The 
punishment for the murder will come, as indeed it does: it is this 
incident which for the Elizabethan audience motivated the justice of the 
tragic catastrophe and makes the closet scene the climax of the play."

As the Elizabethans believed that the action of Providence could 
manifest itself in both ways, Bowers argues that Hamlet, acting as 
"scourge", effects a choice. A number of critics have accepted this 
interpretation. Eleanor Prosser goes even further than Bowers and 
expresses a severer condemnation: "Although Hamlet contemptuously 
dismisses the murder of Polonius as an unfortunate but trivial mistake, 
we should not. From that moment he is doomed." Even Kenneth Muir appears 
to discern in Hamlet's words the possibility of a decision dictated by 
free will: "It is no wonder that, after the death of Polonius, Hamlet 
should wonder whether he is God's minister, called upon to execute 
justice on a sinner who would otherwise escape punishment, or a scourge 
of God, a wicked man who is used by God to punish sinners, but at the 
expense of damning himself". But do Hamlet's words admit of any possible 
alternative? Let us reread these lines:

		For this same lord
   I do repent; but heaven hath pleas'd it so,
   To punish me with this and this with me,
   That I must be their scourge and minister,
   I will bestow him, and will answer well
   The death I gave him.    (174-79)

He killed Polonius in moment of anger, overcome by passion, and now he 
regrets this rash deed. But he acted as God's "scourge AND minister", 
punishing the man who put himself (like Rosencrantz and Guildenstern) 
"Between the pass and fell incensed points / Of mighty opposites" 
(5.2.61-62) and, at the same time, himself for killing an innocent 
victim. While previously he had succeeded in keeping control of himself, 
wisely sparing the tyrant's life, now he has failed in his intent to 
unite passion and reason, "Mars" and "Mercury", to reconcile his need of 
a purifying act of revenge with the requirement of performing it 
according to the dictates of Christian justice. In Elizabethan times the 
expression "scourge and minister", present both in the Quartos (Q1 and 
Q2) and in the First Folio, did not necessarily imply the existence of 
two distinct agents: "the words were often used interchangeably", states 
Jenkins in his edition of the tragedy, and Philip Edwards, who edited 
the new Cambridge text, thus paraphrases: "it is the will of heaven, in 
making me the agent of their chastisement, that I myself should be 
punished by being the cause of Polonius's death, and that Polonius 
should be punished in his death at my hands. (...) 'Scourge and 
minister' is a single concept (scourging officer), split by the familiar 
Shakespearean hendiadys."

Michele Marrapodi,
University of Palermo

[4]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:       Jim Ryan <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
Date:       Friday, 31 Jul 2009 10:09:44 -0400
Subject:    Hamlet's flaw

"Words and actions are separated from each other in 'Hamlet' and the 
tragic hero has to try and somehow resolve the dilemma."

David Bishop comments:

 >John Drakakis here makes what seems to me a good
 >example of a "theoretical" statement that can't quite
 >be made pragmatically relevant to this play.

The separation of words from actions in the play is indicated by the 
many dumb shows that have to be given language, interpreted: the Ghost 
(before the fifth scene), Hamlet in Ophelia's closet, Hamlet reading, 
the unanticipated (to Hamlet) dumb show of the Murder of Gonzago, 
Claudius kneeling in the chapel, Polonius behind the arras, Gertrude 
wringing her hands, Ophelia in Act Four like a "picture" or a dumb 
"beast," Yorick's skull.... We might even think of Fortinbras, the 
laconic new king, as something of a dumb show. And, of course, it 
provides a nice irony to think of the play itself, in spite of or 
because of its logorrhea, as a dumb show.

Jim Ryan

[5]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:       John Drakakis <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
Date:       Friday, 31 Jul 2009 15:22:53 +0100
Subject: 20.0416 What is Hamlet's flaw?
Comment:    RE: SHK 20.0416 What is Hamlet's flaw?

I'm not quite sure what David Bishop means by suggesting that the 
separation of words and deeds in Hamlet is a 'theoretical' point, or 
that it is another of those 'grand abstract pronouncements' to which he 
refers. I am grateful to him for the reference to his work and I can 
think of no reason why I should not read it, but I wonder how he reads 
statements like Claudius's 'My words fly up, my thoughts remain below./ 
Words without thoughts never to heaven go.' (3.3.97-8), or Hamlet's own 
self-reproach that he is 'Prompted to my revenge by heaven and hell' but 
that he 'must like a whore unpack my heart with words'? (2.2.582-3). He 
might like to add to that Hamlet's own analysis of Gertrude in the 
Closet Scene (3.4.). These are what the dramatic characters actually say.

Of course we can theorise this, -- which is not quite the same as 
generating abstract theoretical statements. Surely we need to shuttle 
between theory and practice on this issue. Moreover, if one of the 
play's pressing concerns is not Claudius's secret crime then it is 
difficult to know what Hamlet (and Old Hamlet) keeps  banging on about. 
Revenge that is not personal is, indeed, 'justice'. The question is 
whether at the end of the play Hamlet is a legitimate agent of the law 
or not. I don't say that we can reduce the play to this issue but it 
needs to be factored in to the other issues, two of which are 
emphatically NOT Hamlet's 'character' or his psychology.

Cheers,
John Drakakis

[6]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:       David Basch <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
Date:       Friday, 31 Jul 2009 12:52:56 -0400
Subject: 20.0416 What is Hamlet's flaw?
Comment:    Re: SHK 20.0416 What is Hamlet's flaw?

I must concur with David Bishop's excellent discussion about truth being 
discovered by having ideas compete and not by abandoning the fray and 
assuming all words are vanity. One part of the discovery of truth is 
through uncovering and clearing away unwarranted assumptions that lead 
astray.

For example, Michael Saenger thinks that the kind of mulling over of 
texts of plays that occur in today's university classrooms was not 
prevalent in Shakespeare's day. Hasn't he ever noted how Bible readers 
through the ages have been at work attempting to interpret the words of 
sacred scripture through cross referencing of words and statements made 
in its other parts?  And what about the age old thought given to 
interpreting the actions of enemy nations or political factions? 
Interpreting events in a play is merely more of the same thing, albeit 
less directly consequential. This mulling was as prevalent in the 
Elizabethan and biblical eras as it is common practice in university 
classrooms today.

Shakespeare is worth deep study because he carefully crafted his words 
and scenes to signify something. Those who think he wrote off the top of 
his head with nothing in mind don't know their Shakespeare. He was a man 
active in distilling his own experiences of life within the context of 
the thought that he encountered from the literary works of the past and 
in those of his own day. He has something to say about these things and 
uses his plays to present them.

Naturally, since he holds a mirror up to nature, his thought comes 
through within nature's complexities that surround the activities of 
life. Just as those mired in contemplating their own navels, fixated on 
their obsessions, are unable to interpret the complexities of life 
around them, so are they diverted and unable to grasp the significance 
of the events presented in the poet's plays. I don't pretend it is easy 
to recognize the significance in Shakespeare's plays in which the 
highest levels of thought and feeling are encompassed. In order to 
approach his level of understanding and comprehension, the vast majority 
of us, if not all of us, must approach it as a collective activity. In 
this, we must stand on the shoulders of those giants who went before us 
in grappling with the full dimensions of the issues Shakespeare 
confronted. If we abandon this pursuit, Shakespeare is no more 
meaningful than today's entertainment fare.

Eric Johnson-DeBaufre in his posting shows that his critical faculties 
are on a par with that of Joe Egert. Both he and Joe can't make a thing 
of the events in Shakespeare's play in which Hamlet tells that he is 
preparing a play in order to catch the conscience of the king. In the 
play, Hamlet and Horatio believe that the play that was staged at court 
has found the king's guilt out. As a result, a chain of events are set 
in motion in the play that appear to unfold from that observation.

But, as we see, Eric and Joe disagree not only with me but with Hamlet, 
and Horatio, and now also with Conrad Cook's recent posting. To be sure, 
Joe and Eric pick up Arnie Perlstein to their side, who is impressed at 
how many ways there are to look at such things, not just one way. But, 
then, such disagreements is why we have elections (that often go very 
wrong) and why we must leave the matter to the judgment of each one that 
has followed the discussion on list.

I would note that, in accordance with David Bishop's sage view of how to 
grapple with truth in Shakespeare's plays, Conrad Cook does not merely 
assert his position on Hamlet but he attempts to further anchor it in 
the context of the play. He leads us to the parts of the play that show 
how Shakespeare leaves evidence that tells us that he is aware of the 
concept of the fatal flaw that is corrosive even to abundant good in the 
makeup of the character of a man.

In doing so, Conrad also supplies an interpretive reading of a line of 
Hamlet's words on this issue that many commentators have found difficult 
to understand. As the text states it, Hamlet, talking about "defect" in 
character just before the ghost appears, comes up with the murky line,

                       the dram of eale
            Doth all the noble substance of a doubt
            To his own scandal."

Conrad presents this line in an amended text in which "eale" is read as 
"evil" and the line is amended as

            the dram of evil doth all the noble substance snuff,
            to his own scandal"

I concur with Conrad's point about the meaning of the original line, 
that something not good wipes out noble substance in a person, to the 
person's own scandal. But a similar interpretation that makes sense of 
the line closer to that as written takes "eale" to mean "ale" and 
therefore would tell of too much drink in the "dram of ale" that makes 
all the "noble substance" within the person "doubt[ful]," and that "To 
his own scandal."

Commentators have found Hamlet's words at that time of waiting for the 
ghost as a stream of conscious rattled off aloud faster than clear 
comprehension allows and as reflecting Hamlet's rapid cast of mind as a 
person mulling over things deeply at the drop of a hat and not always 
with pinpoint clarity. As we may now understand it, this entire 
presentation by Hamlet presents a foreshadowing of what we are about to 
encounter in the play.

I will leave one more indication that the play reflects the wisdom of 
Ecclesiastes. Ecclesiastes warns against trying to neatly fathom the 
ways of God, which Hamlet attempts in his overly wise contemplation of 
the chance events that occurred to him in escaping Claudius's plot to 
have him killed in England. Says Ecclesiastes (11:5):

   As thou knowest not what is the way of the spirit,
   nor how the bones do grow in the womb of her that is with child:
   even so thou knowest not the works of God who maketh all.

Taking Ecclesiastes' warning as background since the many allusions to 
this biblical work in HAMLET tell that Shakespeare was fully 
knowledgeable of it, it provides one more indication of a fault of 
character, a "defect," that leads good Hamlet to his destruction. It is 
the kind of defect, unlike ambition, that even the best of men do not 
realize they have, which is why it is tragic when it impacts. Observed 
within the texture of the play, we can find the play a tragic parable 
warning us against such defects in ourselves.

David Basch

[7]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:       Eric Johnson-DeBaufre <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
Date:       Friday, 31 Jul 2009 15:00:58 -0400
Subject: 20.0416 What is Hamlet's flaw?
Comment:    Re: SHK 20.0416 What is Hamlet's flaw?

David Basch's recent ad hominem reply accuses me of being unable to 
"make a thing of the events in Shakespeare's play." In fact, my previous 
point about the indeterminate meaning of Claudius' rising on "the talk 
of the pois'ning" is very much concerned with those events. For an 
important issue at work in the play concerns how precisely to interpret 
actions. Claudius' rising at 3.2 remains inconclusive (despite Hamlet's 
assurance that it confirms what the Ghost has said) precisely because 
Hamlet has himself introduced the possibility of another (and 
fundamentally incompatible) interpretation of it by marking the poisoner 
as "nephew to the King." However much Hamlet might believe that Claudius 
rises because of his guilt (rather than his fear of assassination by 
Hamlet), the text of the play renders the motive for rising ambiguous. 
[I should add that Claudius does not rise earlier when he sees a much 
clearer depiction of his crime represented in the dumb show: there the 
king is poisoned and the murderer woos the widowed queen -- productions 
often have Claudius distracted at this point by conversation, but 
nothing in the text suggests that he does not watch the dumb show].

And it is important that Claudius' rising remain ambiguous, for as I 
said earlier one concern of the play involves the difficulty (and yet 
the necessity) of interpreting actions. The scene that follows concerns 
precisely that issue: Hamlet catches Claudius in the act of prayer and 
again misconstrues Claudius' action, taking it for genuine repentance 
and, as a result, deferring his revenge for a moment when he can catch 
the king "With all his crimes broad blown." Here again the issue of 
misprision arises. Much later in the play Ophelia's death (called 
"doubtful" by the priest who oversees her funeral) occasions another 
meditation on the issue of the indeterminate meaning of actions. This 
time we get it in a quasi-comic legal and philosophical debate between 
the First and Second Clowns. Has Ophelia drowned herself wittingly or 
not? How are we to interpret the act of her death? Did she go to the 
water or did the water come to her? Comic as this debate is in 5.1, 
Gertrude's description of Ophelia's death in 4.7 allows for the 
possibility of either interpretation (although I'm inclined to give 
greater credit to the more ludicrous of the two possibilities outlined 
by the First Clown: namely that the water came to her and drowned her).

All that is a long way of saying that I hope I am quite capable of 
making something of the events of Shakespeare's play.

Cheers,
Eric Johnson-DeBaufre

[8]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:       David Bishop <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
Date:       Friday, 31 Jul 2009 20:13:42 -0400
Subject: 20.0416 What is Hamlet's flaw?
Comment:    Re: SHK 20.0416 What is Hamlet's flaw?

Eric Johnson-DeBaufre revives an old argument, whose popularity is a 
little hard to explain. Is there any case where a ghost comes onstage 
and says something to a character which is a lie, which the character 
then acts on, only to discover it's not true -- and, also, where the 
ghost does not reveal directly to the audience that what they said was a 
lie? I think the convention is to believe the ghost, who in Hamlet is, I 
would say, powerfully believable. In fact, extremely hard to disbelieve.

Hamlet does not exactly say he disbelieves. He just wants, he says, to 
verify. He sets up the play to verify, and it does, quite 
straightforwardly, telling both Hamlet and Horatio (who's been told the 
story offstage) that Claudius really did murder his brother, as 
depicted. The audience -- the theater audience -- does not need this 
proof, not only because we believed the ghost, and have some trouble 
believing in Hamlet's doubts, but because Shakespeare takes pains to 
show us, clearly and explicitly, with the "painted word" speech, before 
the play, that Claudius is guilty. Hence we are in no doubt that 
Claudius rises because his conscience, as Hamlet predicted, is caught. 
That's why his rising straightforwardly reveals his guilt, at least to 
Horatio, and perhaps, we should say, to Hamlet (if we seriously believe 
in his doubts). We in the audience already know, so to us it's only a 
revelation of the success, in one way, of Hamlet's plan. That's the 
setup, and the payoff -- all in accord with dramatic convention.

Does Claudius rise, at the same time, because of the threat implicit in 
the identification of Lucianus as "nephew to the king"? This is more 
ambiguous. We could say yes, but there seems already an implicit threat 
here, since Hamlet, judging from his behavior, already knows about the 
murder: "Let the galled jade wince", etc. If he knows, then Claudius 
(cf. Saxo) would be justified in expecting him to take revenge. We could 
also say that this was in a way an evasion of a threat. If Hamlet had 
called Lucianus "brother to the king", even the entirely ignorant court, 
considering Hamlet's behavior, might have taken it as an accusation. But 
that's doubtful, since they know nothing about the murder. It would be a 
little confusing though -- blurring the line between our knowledge and 
the court's ignorance. For the court, it's Hamlet's rude behavior which 
makes the king mad -- as Gertrude expresses it. If Hamlet had said only, 
"Lucianus, the poisoner", Claudius could take it as a threat as well, 
but the way the play presents a reasonably accurate image of the real 
murder, combined with Hamlet's knowing remarks, amount to enough of an 
indication of danger to send Claudius, quite plausibly, into action. The 
"nephew threat" is only icing on the cake, if that.

Finally, we might note that the reenactment of the crime with a nephew 
does seem to superimpose Claudius's killing of his brother on Hamlet's 
proposed killing of Claudius, reminding us, quietly, of what we might 
take to be a thought that might have occurred to Hamlet: that if he 
kills Claudius he will become, at least in the eyes of the world, like 
Claudius: a murderer and a regicide. Thus a reason for hesitation is 
incorporated into the moment which is supposed to remove his hesitation.

Best wishes,
David Bishop

[9]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:       Michael Saenger <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
Date:       Friday, 31 Jul 2009 22:58:16 -0500
Subject:    What is Hamlet's Tragic Flaw?

David Basch writes:

 >For example, Michael Saenger thinks that the kind of mulling over
 >of texts of plays that occur in today's university classrooms was
 >not prevalent in Shakespeare's day. Hasn't he ever noted how Bible
 >readers through the ages have been at work attempting to interpret
 >the words of sacred scripture through cross referencing of words and
 >statements made in its other parts?

I certainly don't think that mulling over texts is a new thing. One 
could argue that half of history was created by Aristotle mulling over 
Plato. Nor is it new to try to think through what a text means. But our 
mulling has a history to it; it has a universe of genres within which we 
think. Medieval theologians were up to profoundly different things than 
we are up to. That's not to say that there's something wrong with what 
we do, of course. Simply that what we do is inherently anachronistic, 
just as any performance of Shakespeare is necessarily anachronistic 
these days, even if it is in Elizabethan costumes. And occasionally, 
anachronism can lead us to fictively creating an object that doesn't 
exist in Shakespeare's text until we make it with our modern 
interpretative genres; e.g., a tragic flaw, a dramatic subtext, etc. I 
mean, one of the main virtues of our critical idiom (whatever its 
faults) is a tendency to self-correct for  the retrospective projection 
of current things onto the past (thank you, Foucault).

_______________________________________________________________
S H A K S P E R: The Global Shakespeare Discussion List
Hardy M. Cook, 
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 
The S H A K S P E R Web Site <http://www.shaksper.net>

DISCLAIMER: Although SHAKSPER is a moderated discussion list, the 
opinions expressed on it are the sole property of the poster, and the 
editor assumes no responsibility for them.
 

©2011 Hardy Cook. All rights reserved.