Art & Humour

A cast from the past: An ancient business plan

This ancient document, on a papyrus scroll dated 37CE, was recently unearthed in the library of the famous International Archive of Reality and is published here as it may be of interest.

Jerusalem Chamber of Commerce Business Plan

Executive Summary

Our Mission

The Jerusalem Chamber of Commerce is determined to become the world’s leading producer and provider of spiritual promulgation and tourism entertainment using our portfolio of brands to differentiate superior content, transcendent services and consumer products moving forwards. Our teams will ensure the actualised maximisation of the visionary opportunities presented optimally by “The Messiah Project”.

The Company and Management

The Jerusalem Chamber of Commerce (JCC) is headquartered in the city of Jerusalem, Judea, and is incorporated through registration with the Roman Outreach Office of Imperial Affairs. JCC’s Board of Deputies is renowned throughout Judea for exemplary disintermediation and the mandatory horizontals exigent upon the delayering of meaningful spiritually-based financial pre-substantiation. We have also reputedly been mentioned as far afield as Rome itself for the imaginative creation and innovative marketing of products associated with “The Wannabe Macabees” and “The Multiple Beheadings of John The Baptist”.

The Chairperson of JCC is Someone Whose Name Must Never Be Mentioned due to legal advice.

Our Chief Operating Officer is Doctor Benjamin Disraeli whose like shall never be seen again.

Our Chief Financial Officer is Bill Abramsons, CA OA, whose reputation is unparalleled.

Our Team Leader of Sales Information and Public Promotion is Elijah Abbas who first suggested that, for the purposes of The Messiah project, we change the name of the central character Barry (”Bazza”) Levi-Strauss to “Jesus Christ”.

Our Products and Services

The Jerusalem Chamber of Commerce works with, and coordinates, a wide range of member manufacturing associates who supply products to The Roman Imperial Friendship Forces and Judean Enforcement Officers with such products including but not limited to:

  • Flails, for the beating of bodies;
  • Nails, marketed under the name “Handy”, of lengths ranging from one handbreadth (tefach) to two palms (zeret);
  • Wooden cross-beams and uprights with a manual of instructions;
  • Shrouds, for both evening wear and the wrapping of corpses;
  • Stones for unrolling of tombs;
  • Memorabilia, general and specific.

The Jerusalem Chamber of Commerce also works with, and coordinates, a large number of member service organisations who provide services including but not limited to:

  • Contractual facilitation of Roman Special Forces personnel in debt recovery and the eradication of competitors;
  • Risk assessment and protection-insurance provided by the aforesaid Roman Special Forces personnel;
  • Publicity strategies and public relations campaigns exemplifying superior niche narrow and broad spectrum consumer education;
  • Accommodation;
  • Catering for Last Suppers;
  • Event management in venues such as Gethsemane and Calvary;
  • Publications, religious.

The Market

“Cause marketing leverages and enhances brand reputation. Cause marketing is a cooperative effort between organizations to mutually promote and benefit from social and other causes. Cause marketing relationships are ‘feel goods’ and assure your customers you share their desire to make the world a better place. Customers interpret co-branding as a value endorsement from a brand they already trust, creating a potentially lucrative halo effect.” (Ten Most Effective Marketing Strategies Vicki Woschnick, Scroll 1273, Library, International Archive of Reality, 32 BC.)

A “lucrative halo effect” is exactly what was sought by The Jerusalem Chamber of Commerce in The Messiah Project. Our primary number one (1) target market was tourists. However, tourism had been in decline in Jerusalem for a number of years. The Second Temple of Solomon appealed to some ‘feel-good’ sight-seers and we still thank the dearly departed King Herod for his building of this attraction. But we must also in good faith note that the Massacre of The Innocents carried out at his behest, did deter potential visitors, especially those with newborn babies.

Hotel accommodation in Jerusalem was also a cause for concern. Demand was not high and several of our former five-star inns had fallen into relative decrepitude since the failure of our Stay Several Nights Campaign offering cut-rates for Jerusalem, Sodom and Gomorrah. On the other hand, establishments such as “Moshe’s Red-Hot Mommas” and “Circumscribed Pleasure” continued to be well-booked, albeit research showed the guests were mostly residents of Jerusalem. Perhaps the one bright star was the success of the low-budget back-packer ‘hostels’ in various stables whereby thieves and those at the bottom end of the economic demographic could cheaply rent straw (only slightly used) in a warm and welcoming atmosphere designed to deceive and disarm foolish foreigners bearing gold, frankincense and myrrh.

However, the hostels provided nowhere near the transactional volume envisaged by the members of the Jerusalem Chamber of Commerce and our associate organisations. Aware of this, JCC organised a week-end retreat on Temple Mount in which we identified the key drivers of profit in both previous and potential markets, thus helping us to prioritize our wall-charted and blue-sky calibrated initiatives with the implementation of PERT in the formulation of a Value Tree, Maturity Model, Fishbone Diagram, Experience Curve, Product Life Cycle, Value Chain Analysis, Porter’s Five Forces, PESTLE and SWOT.

Additionally, we commissioned Team Leader Elijah Abbas to carry out essential market research via personal questionnaires and focus groups eye-balling needs and desires. What follows is a random selection of the results:

“I feel good about travel but my therapist says that to feel really good I need a Messiah, too. Problem is, I’ve seen a dozen Sons of God on my travels yet none of them put on a good show. Though I’d be willing to give it a shot one more time, I ‘spose. Yes, I do feel the need to go and fling myself to the ground and worship something – anything, really – as long as there’s a good show.”  Essene, from Central Qumran.

“I would feel good about make an annual pilgrimage to Jerusalem if I thought an event there would benefit my religious development and tax benefit plan. You might also consider something to do with purity, sin and redemption as, being an academic, I always find such concepts puzzling.”  Sadducee, from Bethlehem Heights.

“Violence is me thing. If ya could get something to happen that’d be both sorta soft-dick, you know, “spiritual” but with lotsa blood and torment, suffering, like, yair, I’d come to that. If not this year, then maybe every year after, so I could see where something important ‘sposed to have happened.” Pharisee, from Hoon Hebron.

“Whatever you do, you pathetic little person, think big. Go international, think big. Now go away, you disgust me.” A Roman, from Rome.

The Jerusalem Chamber of Commerce deduced from these, and similar, remarks that potential tourists would attend something like a Gathering of The Date or an International Writhing Festival as Writhing was apparently considered by some apologists to be “cultural” and therefore “spiritual”.  However the ever-persistent Team Leader Simon Abbas reminded the Chamber that the correct term was “Writers” rather than “Writhing” and that a “Writers Festival” would inevitably include some bitch-slapping amongst the creative types but this was not commensurate to the required level of pain and torture as reflected by the focus groups. What we needed, he said, was agony. An alleged immaculate birth and some apparent transcendence were also important. Therefore, he suggested, we might turn our attention to the would-be Messiahs always meandering around Judea and, in particular, we should look at a rather gullible young man already on his way to Jerusalem for Passover.

Chief Operating Officer Doctor Benjamin Disraeli and Elijah revealed they had approached one of this man’s group of hangers-on and had negotiated a deal. They had similarly made arrangements with the governing Sanhedrin and Chief Priest Caiaphas.  Furthermore, they had story-boarded a trudge through town by Barry “Bazza” Levi Strauss aka Jesus Christ on the way to Calvary with twelve stops along the way. This journey utilised many of the products of the JCCC and its associates (flails, crown of thorns, cross-beams and uprights, nails, shrouds – stones to be removed from tombs, etc.) in a wonderful example of product placement.

We were also fortunate that the young man was especially passive-aggressive, saying things like “It’s all right, I’ll carry the cross.” and “Don’t worry about me, I do this for your sake” and “I forgive you, I forgive you.” Remarks that inflamed the wonderfully large crowd in attendance.  All in all, the event was professionally managed and concluded to the great satisfaction of all concerned with one or two exceptions. The Jerusalem Chamber of Commerce, as well as utilising many of the products of our members, was able to call upon the service and hospitality industries for their input as well.

Accommodation levels rose almost immediately after our public relations campaign celebrating the event and have since steadily further increased to an almost unforeseen level (see Financial Statement below) allowing us to project extraordinary future figures for tourism in a multi-transactional experience.

The Last Supper provided by Loaves and Fishes Café has become a staple item in the meals requested by many of these tourists and given rise to an extremely profitable franchise operation (see Financial Statement below) extending as far as Rome itself.

The event management in Gethsemane and Calvary provided by Stake On The Hill Productions was of such quality that tourists daily request a live re-enactment and the sale of memorabilia such as crosses and shrouds has exponentially advanced the maximisation of equity (see Financial Statement below).

The accompanying book commissioned by the Jerusalem Chamber of Commerce has been at the top of The Jerusalem Times Best Seller List for more years now (see Financial Statement below) and has continued to remain at the top despite monthly price rises and the ten per cent surcharge for the copyright payment to the main author (Matthew). It is a fine example of how production levels can reach a point consanguineous to the input costs of additional units of output exceeding the revenue from the direct multiple costs of marketing.

Financial Statement

Wow!

Signed, Chief Financial Officer Bill Abramsons, CA OA

Further documents to be released by the famous International Archive of Reality include the extremely brief results of a forensic investigation of the taxes paid by “religious” organisations, an examination of Mohammed’s income from his wife, plus an insider’s account of the stock-market capitalisation of Yahweh.

 

This article was originally published in the June 2021 edition (vol. 121) of Australian Rationalist.

Photo: Anton Mislawsky on Unsplash

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