John, given some of your past postings on politics I thought you might be interested in this:
I was looking up the origin of the concept of “slicing the salami” as a method of bringing about drastic and fundamental changes one little step at a time and I ran across this note in Wikipedia about a television satire that was aired LONG before the current Ukraine situation:
“The term “salami tactics” was used in the British political satire, Yes Prime Minister in Series 1, Episode 1, “The Grand Design”. In this episode, the prime minister’s chief scientific advisor opines that the Soviets won’t suddenly invade western Europe, but will annex areas slice by slice and thus Prime Minister Jim Hacker realizes he will never get to push the nuclear button to stop the Soviets.”
It was also popularized by Hitler and possibly Mussolini in terms of annexing territories and removing political freedoms.
The popular “story” used to illustrate the concept concerns a worker at a butcher’s shop who would get fired if he threw an entire salami over his shoulder and walked out with it at the end of a workday. However, if during the course of his workdays he just popped an extra slice in his mouth each time he was cutting a salami for a customer he’d get the whole thing scot-free!
And finally, it’s used by today’s antismoking movement, as stated in no-smoke.org’s 2009 guidebook for activists, “Fundamentals of SmokeFree Workplace Laws” ( http://www.no-smoke.org/pdf/CIA_Fundamentals.pdf ) in which activists are told that to reach the final goal of a total societal ban,
“you might need to take incremental steps (starting with smokefree non-hospitality workplaces and restaurants, then bars and gaming facilities). But along the way, never accept a compromise that will prevent you from reaching that ultimate goal. Preemption, ventilation, smoking areas and accommodation compromises, for example, create roadblocks to achieving 100% smokefree laws in the future.”
Michael J. McFadden
Peace Studies, 1973
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[JR: This was also an old mainframe legend that was called “salami slicing” where financial systems programmers would “save” the fractions of cents from rounding errors into “special accounts” that paid off to them. I remember being on teams in the 60’s and 70’s reviewing code for such exploits. Laff. Thanks for the laugh! Sadly, all to true.]
McFadden, Michael J. [MC1973]
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