Clavam Hominum Senum Pallidorum

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Myths and legends of the market
The JC’s guide to the foundational mythology of the markets.™

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The Clavam Hominum Senum Pallidorum was — some say, still is — a pre-Enlightenment secret society founded in a remote castle in Romania in the 13th Century. The society’s goals were to promote the interests of all those with a fascination for chasing balls around, standing around fires, hunting, fishing, machinery, gadgets, explosions, racing cars, trains, space, beer-drinking, weak jokes, being knowledgeable about Pink Floyd guitar solos, reciting Monty Python sketches to each other and boobs.

Over time The Senum Pallidorum metamorphosed from a harmless bullshitting club into an occult sect deeply entrenched in all aspects of the workings of society, ensuring fellow members were preferred wherever possible into positions of power and influence in almost any arena of human endeavour.

Members were sworn to utmost secrecy for life — on pain of confiscation of their entire collection of Yes albums[1] — which explains why there is so little tangible evidence or acknowledgement of the existence of the society, and also explains the continuing popularity of Yes. It shows, to the contrary, just how effective and insidious the group is, still actively manouevring in their every activity, public or private, to frustrate the aspiration to self-actualisation of anyone who doesn’t play golf or enjoy Jeremy Clarkson’s Sunday Times columns.

To this day, members — who are honour-bound to deny their participation, of course, though of course they have elaborate self-identification routines, secret handshakes, funny walks and so on by which they identify each other — are deeply embedded in all branches of government, the academy, trade, commerce and industry, so their insidious influence continues to spread like a virus.

The group’s frustrating effect on the progress of social justice has been increasingly apparent, and it has been increasingly vilified by progressive critics who claim that, for all the formal advances in suffrage, equal treatment and legal protection that have been achieved over the last hundred years, much of this is more superficial than it is real, and loyalists to senum pallidorum continue to operate underground.


  1. Even the terrible one in 1988 that had some of the members and wasn’t officially by Yes.