Blog Archive

Friday, February 12, 2016

On Internal Exile



...and on finally belonging in my own damned country...


This:



I have never, in my lifetime(I'm 46) felt like I belonged.
I understand that a lot of this is due to where and when I came of age, and to my own weirdness...made more acute by that where and when....
I am allergic to Reagan's America, it turns out.
I cannot kiss the boss' ass, nor am I near Sociopathic enough to “make it” in business, as currently configured.
For all my adult life, I've suspected(then become convinced) that the game was rigged...that the water we swim in had been poisoned...but we were not supposed to notice that poisoning.
We were, instead, supposed to blame the Scapegoat Du Jour...and if none was near enough to hand, to blame ourselves...Bootstraps, baby!
God smiles on the Rich, you know...and they are Rich because they are more moral than you, little fish...more worthy...
Money, under this paradigm, is the sole metric of personal worth.
Nothing else matters.

Bernie is the expression of the rejection of this paradigm.

At long last, here's a Presidential Candidate who is saying...”Yes...the water is poisoned, the game is rigged...and you didn't poison or rig it”.


http://quietmike.org/2016/01/26/loud-republicans-quiet-democrats/

http://quietmike.org/2016/02/03/what-democrats-learned-from-the-iowa-caucus/


But here's Hillary....”let us continue to nibble around the edges...filter a tiny fraction of the water we swim in...while the Big Fish(now devolved into an all encompassing Algal Mat) poisons even more of it, by leaps and bounds.”
She says, “we concede...we'll just hafta make do with the rigged game, and the poisoners unbound, and the Hidden Aristocracy who really runs the show....we'll muddle through with all that as a Given...”
Is it any wonder that so many folks my age and younger are more fired up than they've been since the 70's...prior to the Reagan Counterrevolution?


Of course, one old Socialist does not a Revolution make:
http://weeklysift.com/2016/02/08/say-you-want-a-revolution/






...But it's a start...and it's certainly pretty cool to hear the same sort of shit I've been saying all these years on the evening news.

Saturday, January 30, 2016

“Government doesn't work”







Turns out that government works just fine, so long as it's not run by Teabilly Corp-Loving Privatisation Zealots.
This is entirely manmade...specifically, One Man: Snyder.
All those cities and towns in Michigan(and other places) eviscerated by the deportation of manufacturing--which wasn't their idea, after all, but a brilliant creation of the same Masters of the Universe who run the Goptea-Corps(e) Nexus.
Those Masters...those elites....they've been banging drums for decades, yelling that “government is the enemy of the people”...that it simply cannot work as advertised.
In Flint, that lead didn't just magically appear....it's been there for a long time...for as long as there's been manufacturing...
But I can't find any record of widespread lead poisoning on this scale, prior to the Snyder “administration”.
Step one, fire the elected local officials, step2: install an Imperial Viceroy in their stead...unbeholden to the citizens...step 3: privatise everything that government used to do=> which necessarily entails cost cutting measures like those that created this specific instance.
Step 4 hope that nobody notices(like by testing the water), while continuing to rail against the evils of government, and the need to hand all of its functions over to Immortal Fictions.
This is what Republican “Governance” looks like.
This is what the Gop would like to do to the rest of the country.
Remember when Snyder first took office, and began the antidemocratic experiment, it was lauded in the “conservative” press as a Model for Governance.
It was great! A “Success!”.
Why isn't the Democratic Party(tm) railing against corporate rule and privatisation and all the rest?
Here is the perfect answer to the 40 year shout that Government is the Enemy...as with all Right Wing Tropes, it's mere Projection. Ie: Every Damned Thing they say about “Big Government” actually applies to themselves and their Corps(e) and Hedgefunds.

If I lived there, I certainly would not be paying the water bill.
And I'd likely be thinking about “second amendment remedies”, if the waffling and blame-escaping behaviour continues...The population of Flint should be camped out on the lawn at the governor's mansion, building scaffolding.
Burn that fucker down, and chase the bastard into the lake.



h

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Hippy-Dippy Utopians



The DLC/Triangulating/Corporate Wing of the (formerly) Democratic Party are out in force...with Krugman as the latest....telling us that, in so many words, “No,We can't!”.
That a Sanders Presidency would be a failure from the start and that what we really need is “Pragmatism” which translates as “give up before you begin, and bow down to your Feudal Overlords”.
They selectively remember much of the History of Us...forgetting, for instance, that Single payer was removed from the table pre-emptively, so as not to freak out the Right overmuch...and that the Public Option soon met a similar fate. Third Way Democrats are really good at capitulation.
Here's Robert Reich's answer, which I agree with:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/robert-reich/bernies-movement_b_9068990.html?utm_hp_ref=politics

and here's Palermo's answer, which I also agree with:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/joseph-a-palermo/paul-krugman-on-bernie-sa_b_9062786.html?utm_hp_ref=politics

and just for fun and context, here's a piece about what it means to love one's country, which hits rather close, for me:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/micah-conkling/3-things-i-want-my-son-to-know-about-patriotism_b_9053690.html

…......................................

For my whole life, we've watched the Corporate Oligarchy take over the country.
This was a Republican Project, to be sure...but they had ample assistance from the so-called opposition...often under the banner of “Pragmatism”.
“Neoliberalism” has worked it's way into the very Idea of America...and even today, few want to label themselves as “Liberal”...let alone “Socialist”.
I think it's instructive that so few of the folks in the comments sections of the first two linked articles seem to remember the incredible reaction to the Occupy Movement, by a coalition of Big Government, Big Business, and federal, state and local “law enforcement”....and how different that reaction was from the reaction to the numerous uprisings of the Right Wing grass roots...all of this under a so-called “Liberal” President.
Are the Bundy's still in possession of the bird sanctuary?

(Thought experiment: what would happen if I took over some federal shack in the wilderness?)
…..............................
The problem with the Democratic Party is one of Definition...of who we are, and of what the world really looks like.
For my whole life, we've allowed the Oligarchs and their Lunatic Enablers to define Reality, and to define “Liberalism”.
We've allowed them to define what it means to be an American.
The Clintons(and the numerous talkers who have been so busy attempting to preemptively trash Sanders) have played right along with this.
I long ago stopped caring if a Liberal resurgence was possible.
The point is that we'll never actually find out if we never even try.

(see: Palermo's rebuttal of Tomasky's dour assessment...which reads like a eulogy: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/joseph-a-palermo/michael-tomaskys-despairi_b_619780.html)
…........................................................
At this moment, the GOP's three legged coalition is falling apart (http://www.alternet.org/election-2016/18-reasons-why-donald-trump-vulgar-two-bit-caesar-according-americas-conservatives)

Ie, strike while the iron is hot.

Now's the time to present a Vision of America that is not beholden to Oligarchy...that is(or can be) of, by and for the People...instead of of by and for the Corporate Aristocracy.
I don't expect the Media, nor the Democratic Establishment to allow any of this...they are part of the Machine, after all.
...and the Machine doesn't want an America for the People.
That, right there, is why I'm voting for Bernie...even if it's a so-called “wasted vote”.
And we must remember that there is a media bias at work, here...further evidence of the stupidity and dishonesty of the Right Wing Mythos(Liberal Media, my shiny white ass):
http://www.democraticunderground.com/1280100871

http://usuncut.com/politics/nationwide-march-for-bernie-sanders-sweeps-across-35-cities/

Remember, as well, that the pollsters still haven't discovered cell phones,lol...continuing to rely solely on those folks who have land lines.
How does this skew the results, I wonder?
I could go on and on, of course.
The Democratic Party has lost me.
This feels like the last chance to say No to the coming hellworld that we are steadily being led into, and we are expected to hold our nose, yet again, and support the Lesser Evil.
It's likely already too late to turn it around, when even the Language has been perverted in service of Corporate Feudalism, when so many of our countrymen are Stupid and Hysterical, and when someone like Trump can have a real shot at being the “leader of the free world”.
If there was ever a time when a Hail Mary Pass was justified, this is it.

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

On Bill Clinton, Trade and Instrumentality



Billary didn't invent “Globalisation”....

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/kevin-l-kearns/bill-clintons-trade-legac_b_8945180.html

"Globalisation" is a useful euphemism whereby Immortal Fictions escaped the fences we had placed around them, and became Supranational.
This was merely one more step, albeit a large one, in a long line of such steps...Nixon in China...the entire Cold War/Mideast Policy...interrupted, for a while, by FDR's collection of gnawed bones thrown to the hoi polloi to stave off becoming food, himself.
...on and on.
It has little to do with “capitalism” as envisioned by Smith, or even Marx.
It has even less to do with the “capitalism” defended so vigorously by all and sundry....those defenders are analogous to priests of Baal, alone on their hill tops...their deity having been replaced by another, more sophisticated ghost.
We the People are mere instrumentalities in this regime...truly Cogs in a great Machine...
What Clinton did was tear down an already decrepit fence...full of holes and made of rusty barbed wire.
“Free Trade” is Global Government for the 1% and the Paper Entities they hide in...again, to avoid becoming food.
Notice, that at the same time as they have constructed the WTO, et alia, they have ramped up the Borders we must navigate....this is instructive: “illegal Immigration” is a hot topic...can't have the Little People being free to move about the world, chasing the money....such freedom is only for the Aristocracy.
The Post War Boom was enabled by the destruction of the Physical Plant of Europe and Asia; the Clinton Era Boom was fueled by euphemism and a sort of Find the Queen/Pea game of Promises and Belief.
The Hidden Aristocracy moved the bulk of our Physical Plant to Bangladesh, and the like..chasing lower wages, and fewer rules.
Labor Arbitrage, sold to us as the Path to Prosperity.
We were stupid to allow it...even cheer it on....
In the time , since, I note, the Prisons have filled, and we've even privatised them...somewhere to put our Surplus Population, now essentially useless.
Of course, if we were interested in anything but “Efficiency”, we could have kept some of the Means of Production...but, again, it's Instrumentality that rules the day...Profit is all that matters, even when the digital version of printed pieces of rag-paper are objectively worthless.
Nietzsche worried what we would replace God with, after we had killed him.
Perhaps we have replaced him with Economics and our Organisations....

Monday, January 11, 2016

Angrywhitemanistan




Boehlert has a good point:


(http://www.huffingtonpost.com/eric-boehlert/the-media-and-trumps-rall_b_8955056.html)


FTA:”For anyone who thinks the coverage has been pitch perfect, just imagine, for instance, if Hillary Clinton supporters were roughing up conservatives at her rallies, punching and choking them. Imagine if Bernie Sanders supporters were kicking and taunting attendees at Sanders rallies who were protesting the Democrat's agenda. Imagine if conservatives quietly protesting Clinton and Sanders were being hauled out of events by cops while mobs of Democrats hurled insults at them.
Cardiac arrest barely begins to describe the type of communal meltdown that would occur within the Beltway press if any of those things had taken place under the auspices of the Democratic Party. Let alone if they took place over and over and over again.”

Fuck.
Remember Occupy?
Remember that cop?
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/10/23/pepper-spray-cop-settlement_n_4152147.html

Remember the nationwide coordinated “response”?

(http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2012/dec/29/fbi-coordinated-crackdown-occupy)


Sure seems like the Right can do just about anything they want, these days(while crying “Persecushun!!!!) and get right away with it.

Nom-nom-nom...



Visions of Teabilly revolutionaries, with that vacant but angry visage, gnawing on a human index finger...fat dripping in their three day old shadowbeard:

http://www.nytimes.com/2016/01/10/us/politics/for-republicans-mounting-fears-of-lasting-split.html?smid=tw-share&_r=0

The Grand Coalition...Reagan's Three Legged Stool...is no more.
Didn't I warn them that the Tea Party was a bad idea?

That the rhetoric and vituperate rage that it engendered would eventually turn around to bite them?
Rough Beast....
When even Paul Ryan is a RINO...I can see the future, and it is filled with blood and fire.




the Dems have their own problems a brewing:
http://www.alternet.org/comments/drugs/debbie-wasserman-schultz-keep-arresting-pot-smokers#disqus_thread

Look at the comments....calls for beheading DWS and worse(!)...identical inchoate rage to that found on Tea Fora.
At least here the Ugly is interspersed with intelligent discourse, eyes remarkably free from the usual scales and blinders. But there are no real solutions offered by the Intelligent Libs...there are no solutions...not even Bernie...which is pretty damned clear=eyed for politically engaged Americans.
The bloom is off the rose, and the rose is now crushed into the icy mud.
Dystopia is all we can reasonably hope for...a precipitate decline in standards, a continuing fall in hopes and dreams...where even the Ideal that we work towards is tarnished...is Less....


And, as Synthesis(a la Hegel), a sublime, near Kerouacian exegesis:

http://www.alternet.org/news-amp-politics/white-mans-pathology-deep-inside-popularity-donald-trump-and-bernie-sanders


Aunt Hannah said, in some thousands of words, that Evil is Banal...ordinary.
One could say, boring....
The homogenaeity of the parts of America I have been to in my adulthood speaks to this.
There are many things that we could do, of course...to allay...to put off...even avoid what looks like our fate.
But those things require understanding and trust...two things that are noticeably missing from the body politic.
They also require work and sacrifice...which, while given a whole lot of lip service...are anathema.
The defining feature of Neoliberalism is “MEMEMEME”...the idea that I am an Island Nation in my own right...and fuck everybody else.
Mr Marche's offering points to the end result of this universal selfishness: Politics is over.
We are each alone.

Friday, January 8, 2016

Tarpman

So this happened




a defender of the federal bird sanctuary under his Freedom Tarp.
(made in China, of course)
The thing that gets me about these folks is that they are unwittingly supporting the very forces that have ruined the country...while railing against their fellow victims, and against a bureaucracy that, while well intentioned, is sometimes myopic and stupid in their enforcement activities.
If they “win”, these sage brush yokels, and all that federal land is handed to the states, and/or sold off, it will spell the end of Wilderness...and that beautiful country will become a wasteland.
And they, themselves, will not benefit from it.
It's sad...and absurd...like so many things, today.
Misplacing their ire, and ignorantly staking out such a place for their Thermopylae fantasies...
I hear the ghost of Hobbes, whispering in the wind:”Bellum omnium contra omnes “.

There are many such groups, and near-movements, scattered in the backwaters and podunk enclaves.
There are neoconfederates right here...proudly flying their confederate flags, and unashamedly pontificating about the evil fedgov and it's army of poor black people and “illegals”, ready for the balloon to go up, so they can subjugate all these “real amercuns”, and march them into camps.
This is the result of the confusion and mud-in-the-water of our collective mind, and the anti-intellectual policies and trends that have so dumbed down the people...or at least a substantial portion of them.
Economics plays a large role, as well...it takes more than one job to get by, so folks are scrambling and have no time for Thought...the simple explanation fills the gap, helpfully provided by the Great Wurlitzer...
It is the Year One...there is no History, instead a smattering of myths...there is no ideology, rather a half-baked conglomeration of contradictory aphorisms that pretend to salience.
Does the world, seen through Tarpman's eyes, even resemble the world you see when you look out your window?






No exceptional circumstances whatsoever,



...whether a state of war or a threat of war, internal political instability or any other public emergency, may be invoked as a justification of torture.” --UN Convention Against Torture(to which we are a signatory)

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/rebecca-gordon/america-revisits-the-dark-side_b_8929918.html

https://www.hrw.org/node/283564

Two of the most Obscene Things I've ever read.

Makes one want to burn a flag...or storm a Bastille...
And here all I gotta do to go to jail is sit quietly on my porch smoking a joint in silence...fully clothed.

But there's Wolfie working for the Other Brother(the “smart one”, we're told)...and there's no mention of this issue, save for , as the woman said, promises to be better and more vigorous Torturers than those who came before.
Justice will never be served, I'm afraid...and things will only get worse.
There is a great ugliness loose in the world, and an entire media empire/ political organisation set up conveniently to fan the flames of hatred and fear...and simultaneously ensure that nothing whatever can be done to mitigate the myriad causes of this ugly despair... and at the same time, remove any obstacles to actions and policies that will only accentuate those causes.
It's hard not to be terminally cynical.

Sunday, January 3, 2016

And Iran




http://www.cnn.com/2016/01/02/politics/barack-obama-2016-wish-list/

http://www.presstv.com/Detail/2016/01/03/444332/Iran-tells-banks-to-prepare-for-bans-removal/

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/saudi-executions-nimr-iran_56893488e4b014efe0dab27d

http://irannewsupdate.com/news/nuclear/2505-obama-administration-promoting-iran-economic-growth-and-collaboration.html

…...............................................................

Some of my earliest political memories are of yellow ribbons on pine trees, during the Iranian Hostage Fiasco.
At the time, I remembered an issue of National Geographic from the 60's(I have my dad's and my grandad's stashes) on the Shah, Pahlavi, and the Peacock Throne....and re-read that, as well as a long Wander through the Giant Deluxe Set of Britannica on the history and culture of the region, going back to pre-historic times.
They did not leave out the Post-World War 1 rejiggering of borders, nor Operation Ajax; although they were not near explicit enough to engender much outrage.
Those two events are why there's a beef between Iran and the USA(and UK).
Remarkably, France was a party to the first thing...redrawing the maps...but the are relatively friendly with Iran, today. Britain, too, seems rather less hostile than we do.
The Islamic Revolution was a direct response to Operation Ajax, however, and the government we thereby created.
We're still mad about those people having the audacity to throw off our approved dictator, and withhold their oil....and they're still mad about us being mad.... as well as about that whole Coup d'etat thing.(see:”Savak”)

Obama seems to have changed this, or at least made a beginning to changing it.
Simultaneously, Saudi Arabia may have finally run out of sufficient oil reserves to coddle any longer.
(all the exportation of Wahabi-ism and box cutter wielding lunatics, and the whole Burqa, wimmens can't drive business, has likely helped to sour that relationship,too)
Iran still has oil...and a lot of Natgas...and they're buddies with now-Shia Iraq...who also has a lot of oil(last big pool of light sweet).

This looks like a Big Pivot in the making, to me.

It's also worth thinking about how much the GOP relies on Saudi money...lol.
(And by extension, Corporate America)

One could be extremely cynical, and posit that the current insanity in Syria is part of this Chessboard...and that Damascus would make a fine pipeline route...one that doesn't entail big slow-moving tankers/targets lined up in the Persian Gulf, the Red Sea or Suez.
If one were extremely cynical...


Friday, December 18, 2015

Moribund



Behold:



I'm reminded of Athens, after Syracuse.

We are a foolish people, seemingly intent on destroying ourselves...either by actively working for our own destruction(GOP and Corpodems) or abdicating, and hiding ourselves away(actual Liberals).
Look what the last 40+ years of neoliberal corporate fascism/feudalism have gotten us:

http://www.alternet.org/economy/half-america-or-damn-near-close-living-poverty

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/joseph-e-stiglitz/us-middle-class-society_b_8759752.html?utm_hp_ref=business&ir=Business

http://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2015/05/what-does-middle-class-even-mean/392471/

And yet I cannot even begin to discuss such things without some rube flinging inanities, or...worse...some troll attempting to threaten me into acceding to his surreality.
The idea of an aristocracy having stolen our government in broad daylight is “conspiracy theory”...while that of Fake Moon Landings is not.
Pointing out the obvious...like systemic racism, classism,etc...is grounds for public excoriation; while actually engaging in such behaviour is not.
Fear and loathing...the reptiles have won.

I must disengage from the whole mess.
It is pointless, in this far place, to attempt to reason...to cajole or even try to get folks to question their ill conceived and unexamined assumptions.
I will vote for Bernie in the Primary...and write him in in the General, after Hillary has been crowned.
Aside from that, I retire as a gadfly.
I will shore up our defenses, and prepare for the hellworld that Americans seem determined to create.

Fie!
Have fun in the Cave.

Saturday, December 5, 2015

Misanthrope

A frelling week of cold rain, and now the sun's out.
But it's still cold...and I cannot get warm, it seems.
Especially my feet.
There's a thick layer of dew on everything.
Cold wet feet discourages work...especially the scaffold-kind...
I despise heights.
After a couple of weeks of too much family(brother's bunch came up, and before that it was my fucking former uncle's tornado of greed and stupidity(probate))
and Terror, out there in the world...another clinic shot up...Paris exploding...and a refugee crisis...this time from Syria...and a Pakistani-American couple, shooting up a place in Cali....
….and the knee jerk, ugly reaction to all of this....the Sniper for Freedom Charity Event next week, and the total lack of awareness of the brutal irony....
….and I think of all of the folks I know in meatspace, and despair.
I get reports from wife and kids about the various insanity that is routinely uttered, in public, by Good Christians and Ordinary Folks...Hang them all...Kill them All...Drop the Bomb...
Round them up...Kick them Out...
Take it Back...Fuck the Poor, the Brown and the Different....
God will know what to do...
Now, the news is filled with dire warnings of climate disaster...while a Super El Nino is busy causing the cold wet I so lament....
….and the comments below these terrifying dispatches: outright denial of established science...it's easier to believe in a giant nefarious conspiracy, somehow...
More ugliness....
You libtards are forcing it down our throats...
and sticking it in our ass...
We must go into the closet, with the Lord(just like it says, it turns out...)
Woe is us...gnash gnash...rend, rend....
A lack of ashes, because they have long ago forgotten the use of fire...
All of this....this, and the usual “Holiday” ennui and apathy, and patient, painful endurance...and I find that I hate Humanity.

All of our Systems select for Psychopathy...
One cannot take the High Road, because one's opponents are constantly dragging everything into the mud...
Probate...we say, “let it be fair and just and simple”
But No....
we must quibble over the least bit...what we are entitled to, by law(like an accounting of the estate) is withheld...so it's fight, tooth and nail...spend all manner of jack on lawyers, who further confuse the matter, until what should have taken a day, takes a year, or more.
This same thing obtains all through Human Life...at least where there's more than one Human...
The Good...the Sane...are well hidden, and largely unknown...
But the Screamers, and Grubbers, and Meddlers...psychopaths, all...are forever underfoot...under bed...in one's pockets...and in one's ears...
That it's Rational to take refuge in misanthropic solitude doesn't negate the weight of such feelings.
I snarl at passing cars...yell at airplanes...and cuss under my breath the cops and war mongers, racists and stupid people that I have known...

This is the Age of the Arrogantly Stupid.
Folks shout their Ignorance to the world...demand to be praised for their Mendacity and Greed....loved for their World Ending Hatred...and obeyed, for their Ignorant Certainty and Willful Blindness.
Bronze Age camp fire tales and Medieval fairy stories...borne out of confusion and pre-scientific unreason, are paraded as Rules to Live By...Reason is rejected out of hand, inasmuch as it contradicts the Mythos, never examined...
To examine it would be a Sin.

So I retreat, at long last...and resolve to hide my phone...and I kindle a fire, and wait for the 3 rooms of the central Library to heat up so I can remove my long johns...
I kindle another fire under the Hot Tub/Think Tank....for later...when it reaches a balmy 60 degrees.
Bach...violin concertos....
Dope...a cheap Chianti...and Hefeweissen and Shiner for later, if needed.
Commune with the neighbor's cows, visiting our back pasture...
I can see them from my window by my desk.
I realised the other day, that in four short years, I will be a half a century old.
Of course, I usually feel much older than that.


I worry
a lot.
When my eldest goes to a Junior High dance, I worry.
When my youngest goes on a field trip, I worry.
This is the world we're bequeathing them...full of violent and well armed crazy people, whom we cannot point out, because other violent, well armed crazy people might be offended.
Similarly, nothing can be done about disastrous climate change, or economic dysfunction, or the widespread systemic racism...because we're not allowed to speak of such things objectively.
The folks who most benefit from all of this destruction and disarray are exempt from being called to account.
Millions of our neighbors are delusional apologists for avarice and doom, who cannot brook any rational discussion.
I worry that when my boys are ready for college, that I will not be able to afford it...or, worse, that it will no longer be worth the expense.
Why go into massive debt, only to flip burgers?
Why learn a trade, or gain a work ethic, or get an education, when none of these things are valued...as evidenced by the employment situation?
Everything is broken...and we cannot even begin repairs, since we cannot even agree with half the population that there is an actual problem...let alone how to attempt to fix it.


A fork in the road:

The Dirty Fucking Hippies
Were Right

A fork in the road:

either “Generational War”,
(http://www.the-american-interest.com/2015/11/19/its-still-world-war-iv/)
….or a Road Less Traveled,
(http://www.huffingtonpost.com/jeff-faux/isis-war-the-case-for-cut_b_8719368.html)

On 911, I was at work at my cafe, with my 3 employees, preparing for the lunch rush(which turned out to be my last big day)
My wife called and said “turn on the radio”.
So we listened to WOAI out of San Antonio, while we cooked and cleaned.
I remember, during the confusion and hysteria, ruminating aloud that perhaps we should ask ourselves why those folks hated us enough to do such things(it was already being blamed on Bin Laden, and Al Quaeda).
That Friday Night(my last busy night, it turned out), I was mobbed by a few folks in the kitchen, asking me what I thought about all of this...by this time, there was an uncharacteristic unity afoot in the USA, that we were in an existential war against Islamic Terrorists...and the Rhetoric was identical to that of the Cold War.(see: George Kennan, and the Truman Doctrine:(https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Truman_Doctrine)
I held forth...my impromptu audience in rapt attention as I slung steaks and soft-shelled crabs...and with a great intuitive leap, diagnosed the fundamental issue(which I still believe is true): that we had brought this upon ourselves...by meddling and screwing with other people's countries...by being an Imperial Force for greed and power, astride the world...all in order to maintain control of backward places where the oil lived...and that the Terrorists were being rather open and honest about their motivations...and that they had a point...and that we would do well to listen to them, and attempt to determine if their grievances were legitimate.
None of my listeners had ever heard of the numerous assholeries by the CIA...like Operation Ajax, that subverted the Democratic Will of the Iranian People in service of greedy oil barons...neither did they remember that our own government had all but created Al Quaeda in Afghanistan as a proxy to fight the Soviets.
I believe that my narrative that week was the biggest contributor to the failure of my cafe, over the next 2 months. Hunting Season didn't happen that year...and Foreign Food was seen as unamerican(Freedom Fries!)...and there was much uncertainty and fear and hysteria evident in the population...and I could see from the front window that the Greasy Spoon(and e coli palace) was doing very well, continuing to serve as the de facto Town Hall, and dishing up “comfort food”, rather than my Gourmet fare...but my Diagnosis is likely what killed my cafe.

Turns out I was right.
The actions of Our Government, and Our Military Industrial Intelligence Complex, going back 70 years, had created this mess...and continues to do so.

Now, after all these years of anti-Islamic hysteria, fueled by our own reactionary ignorance of the world, and fomented by a great wurlitzer of fear and loathing that passes for “conservative” media, as well as the socio-economic wasteland that we live in and studiously ignore, a couple of American Muslims shoot up a place...
Their motives are unimportant...aside from the ridiculous bromide,”they hate us for our freedom”--and the Drums of War....a “war that will not end in our lifetimes”...beat ominously, once more.
It doesn't matter that our increasing involvement in Iraq, Syria, Libya, Somalia, Pakistan, Afghanistan, et alia is exactly what Daesh wants, and needs...that we, and our ill conceived war-making and drone strikes and the Islamophobia that drives it all, are their best recruiting tools...
It doesn't matter that by failing to address the Root Problems that drive those folks to want a Caliphate, we ensure their continued commitment and fervor...

I was right...that day in September,13 years ago...and I am right, right now.
The only way to end this conflict is to not play that game.
To admit our own guilt in fucking up that whole part of the world, and to resolve to mind our own fucking business.
To withdraw from the Arab World, and find our energy elsewhere, even if the oil and gas companies will suffer for it.
For Oil is at the very root of all of this...and always has been.
Our unending support for the vicious Saudi Regime, and their ongoing export of Salafist Wahabism...our unending support for a murderous Israeli Regime and their ongoing export of hatred and lawlessness...our unending meddling in the affairs of other people's lands, where we do not belong, and where we do not have a right to meddle...all because these places are where Our Hydrocarbons are...
Enough.

I will be called a Traitor...a Terrorist Lover who hates America...a Hippy Dippy Muddle Minded Libtard...If I'm listened to, at all.
And we will go to war, anyway.
Because nobody listens to Hippies...and nobody listens to Rational Arguments...nobody pays any mind to the Smart People who counsel that we Think and Reason and look Objectively at the actual History.
So once again, I am left with the question: does Humanity Deserve to Survive itself?
Does America?
I am inclined to answer in the negative.
We are too stupid to survive.






(http://stochasticterrorism.blogspot.ca/)

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Fear and Loathing part 3



“if you abandon Genesis’ literal history of marriage and say marriage can be two men or two women or whatever you want, well why not abandon clothing?” - See more at: http://www.rightwingwatch.org/content/ken-ham-worries-if-we-allow-gay-marriage-people-will-just-stop-wearing-clothes#sthash.Jx9PeWKH.dpuf

and there's much more:

http://www.rightwingwatch.org/content/paranoia-rama-obamas-antichrist-plot-gay-marriage-ruins-clothing-cruzs-lgbt-smear-campaign

Any port in a storm, I guess....




I wouldn't care, in a perfect world, that Ken Hamm is afraid of everydamnedthing...including Social Nudity.
I am compelled to care, however, because so many of my countrymen DO believe in what he rambles on about...him and a veritable army of other mouth breathers.
How many folks tune in to Hamm, Limbaugh or the hateful crazy person Michael Savage?
Fox News(sic) is merely a Gateway Drug to the Real Lunacy.
From Lifetime Movies to the Narrative they receive in Church, the world looks increasingly Dark and Scary to a great many of our neighbors. Add in the Right Wing Web, and it becomes Terrifying, indeed.
That Fear is what scares me, as I've now said 3 times just this morning.
I sit here Naked on Sunday Morning, after smoking a joint, and rolling in the hay with the Wife(non-procreatively), catching up on this week's Crazy, and realise that I embody everything that those folks Fear and Hate:
Sex-Positive(and Trysexual!),Naked, Liberal, Intelligent, “Libertarian Socialist”,Globalist(in the Diogenes Way), Secular with Pagan Leanings(Happy Pagan New Year!!)...I Think for Myself, rather than merely accept the “Truth” that's handed me by those who have arrogated the “Truth” to themselves...often under the aegis of their version of the Skydaddy.
I AM the Liberal Conspiracy, it turns out...
But I am all but completely alone...at least way out here...which makes it difficult to implement all the Cultural Marxism and stuff(sic).lol.
In other words, they are afraid of Nothing At All.
The Great Enemy that they are so angry at and afraid of doesn't exist.
...which doesn't seem to matter, when all's said and done.
Beware of these folks...for, lacking an actual Dark Force to unleash themselves upon, I fear that we will find that We will do nicely in it's stead.

So...Contraceptives cause Abortion.

Back into the Cave!!!



http://www.rightwingwatch.org/content/religious-right-activists-argue-recriminalization-birth-control-birth-control-movie



What it must be like in their terrifying little world!!!
The only way that I see to counter this insane nonsense is to assert, loudly and proudly, that Sex is Fun...and that how and why We do sex is none of their fucking business.
I am not, nor have I ever been a Christian...of any denomination.
Why am I to be subject to their self imposed rules and regulations, guilt trips and hang-ups, regarding sex?
What gives them the Right to have veto power over the wants and needs of the rest of us?
And how, pray tell, does it make sense to so many people that “Contraceptives cause abortions”?
These folks are mortally afraid of Modernity.
That is their Right...and I will defend that Right.
But I am not afraid.
Many, many others are also not afraid.
I like sex...it's one of my very favorite things...and I refuse to feel guilty, or to change my sexual behaviour, because of a few moralizing scolds forever stuck in a Bronze Age belief system.
Let them go into the Cave...I sincerely hope that they will be happy there.
But I will not be joining them.

The only aspect of sexual behaviour that is anyone else's business is Consent.
If the parties engaged in sexual behaviour are consenting, and above the(somewhat arbitrary) Age of Consent...meaning that they are Legally Able to Consent...then it's none of our business.
Curiously, the same Cavers who want to outlaw Contraception are often the same folks who advocate so-called “Biblical Marriage”...wherein the Wife and Kids are the Property of the Husband, who is God's Regent in the Family.
This, of course, is often the very Opposite of Consent(see: Duggars, et al.)
In a similarly perverse fashion, they are often the same folks who decry “Big Government on our backs”...but who seem to have no problem with Big Government meddling in everyone's sex life...dictating what part goes where, and when and for what purpose.
In yet another example of the counterintuitive Surreality, these same folks cry and wail that their Religious Freedom is being trampled upon by the 'nasty gays'...by virtue of the latter's desire for Equal Treatment under the Law.
Where I live, it doesn't look like Christians of any stripe are suffering Persecution.
On the contrary, they are most often the ones Doing the Persecution...of Gays of Liberals, of Muslims of People of Color, of Pagans and Atheists and Agnostics and anyone who doesn't fit into their preferred narrow worldview.
Why do We allow this tiny minority of Life Hating Busybodies (who long for the Fiery End of the World, no less) to have a Universal Right to Veto things they don't like?
I encourage the rest of Us to stand up to these people.
They do NOT have that Right, unless We give it to them.

The Mangled Corpse of the Enlightenment Project



This, from David Barton:
"Why is it that conservatives are convinced that they are in the minority?" Barton asked. "In reality, we're not, but we think we are ... According to statistics, when you look at the groups of liberals, and moderates and conservatives, conservatives are by far the most silent of those three groups. They're least likely to speak up, and why is that? It's because conservatives don't want to speak until they feel like they've mastered the facts about whatever the subject is that is under discussion. Now, liberals or moderates, they're happy to give you their opinion and tell you what they think, regardless of whether they know the facts. But conservatives don't like doing that, they want to know the facts before they answer what are often wild and baseless claims made by liberals and moderates." -

From:

http://www.rightwingwatch.org/content/barton-conservatives-dont-want-speak-until-they-feel-theyve-mastered-facts#sthash.MtK3OXYm.dpuf


According to my largely anecdotal surveillance(the best I can do, given limited resources), the Hard Core of the Surrealist Movement in American Politics accounts for around 20% of the general population....they are far and away from “Silent”.
There is a further 30-50% who are either unsure, or apathetic, but are at the same time prone to being swayed by specious arguments, especially when their numerous, largely unconscious, Fear Buttons are pushed.
While there are indicators that the Surrealists are growing bored/disenchanted with politics(which I will address later(“the Benedict Option”)), their Organisations are standing athwart the machinery of government and economic power, and are unlikely to abdicate any time soon, without a large and vocal Liberal Populist Uprising.
The problem, of course, is that if there were such an Uprising, it would be spun by the likes of Barton and Rush and Hannity,et alia, as Proof that all the nonsense they've been spewing is accurate....that there really is a nefarious cabal of Gay Marxist Islamofascist Super-villians bent on the destruction of America and the Murder of all “Real Americans”.
This Spin would be accepted without question by the 20% or so of the True Believers(who are also very well armed), and prove convincing to a large portion of that 30-50% who are unsure/apathetic and Scared.
What I fear is that some or a lot of these folks will be scared enough by the Spin to “Take Action”....meaning that terrible Hobbsean Civil War of All against All that I've been warning about for 15 years.
Ted Cruz is one of “my” US Senators(the other never makes the news, he's safely in the background).
Watch any of his speeches.
There is a formula that is readily apparent.
Words like “Failed” and “Lawless” are repeated ad nauseum when the topic is Obama, Democrats or any of the more Liberal/Progressive things they say or do.
He never says anything about Obama without the qualifier.
This Formula is everywhere one looks on the Right.
Dig into their Fora and into the Comments sections of their parts of the Web, and it's there...being asserted without question.
We on the Left often lament that the Right has no solutions to the problems that are quite self-evident, to us.
We forget that if they acknowledge the existence of these problems at all, the fault for them is always either Government or some Other who is actively eating out the substance of the Nation...be it Blacks, Gays, Socialists, the Poor...on and on.
Everyone gets a turn at being to Blame, except for the folks who have been in de facto control of our Government and Economic System for 40+ years.

….“but/....but...but...Clinton was a Liberal...and Obama was a Liberal...ergo, Liberals have been running Government since FDR!!!”, they will say....but if one looks at the rise of the Third Way “New Democrats”, and their wholesale takeover of the erstwhile “Liberal Party”, taking it far to the Right, this is hardly the case at all.
The Third Way folks are the Corporate/Wall Street owned cancerous growth on the Liberal Majority in America.
They have helped to confuse the issues and the paradigm, itself.
We no longer know who we are, or what words mean.
(Ontological Crisis)
Turn on Fox News(sic), or listen to AM Radio....wild assertions are rampant.
Assertions, maybe most importantly, about what a Liberal Is...and what Liberals Believe and what they Want.
I am always shocked to learn that I want to turn everyone gay, and destroy the Family Unit, and make everybody march in lockstep to the concentration camps.
This is what is being routinely asserted...without challenge...in Right Wing World.
When we talk about a Bubble Universe, where Teabillies live...it is NOT Hyperbole.
They really have managed to overlay Objective Reality with a Scary Terrorworld of Total Fiction.
When I see things like the above quote from David Barton, it feels Hopeless.
Nothing can penetrate that Bubble. There is no way for us to reach our Frothing Brethren...they are too far down the rabbit hole.
Even Reason, itself, has been perverted to the Cause.
And when, at long last, Americans who are yet outside of that Bubble Universe have had enough, and endeavor to “Take Our Country Back”(!!!), it will be seen by the Lumpenbillies as an Attack...and Attack that they have been warned about for 40 years.
I hope that Bernie Sanders will truly move the Democratic Party back towards the Left...that we can overcome the Third Way Neoliberal Nonsense and present an actual viable Threat to the Plutocrats.
But I fear what the Deluded Hordes...the Bewildered Herd...will do when/if that happens.



…................................................

Here's a couple of random quotes from Barry Goldwater,”Mr Conservative”, that I find quite enlightening.
Remember that Hillary was a Goldwater Girl.




“Today’s so-called ‘conservatives’ don’t even know what the word means. They think I’ve turned liberal because I believe a woman has a right to an abortion. That’s a decision that’s up to the pregnant woman, not up to the pope or some do-gooders or the Religious Right. It’s not a conservative issue at all.”
~Barry Goldwater
"On religious issues there can be little or no compromise. There is no position on which people are so immovable as their religious beliefs. There is no more powerful ally one can claim in a debate than Jesus Christ, or God, or Allah, or whatever one calls this supreme being. But like any powerful weapon, the use of God's name on one's behalf should be used sparingly. The religious factions that are growing throughout our land are not using their religious clout with wisdom. They are trying to force government leaders into following their position 100 percent. If you disagree with these religious groups on a particular moral issue, they complain, they threaten you with a loss of money or votes or both. I'm frankly sick and tired of the political preachers across this country telling me as a citizen that if I want to be a moral person, I must believe in A, B, C, and D. Just who do they think they are? And from where do they presume to claim the right to dictate their moral beliefs to me? And I am even more angry as a legislator who must endure the threats of every religious group who thinks it has some God-granted right to control my vote on every roll call in the Senate. I am warning them today: I will fight them every step of the way if they try to dictate their moral convictions to all Americans in the name of conservatism."
~Barry Goldwater

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Toddlers




Boo Hoo.
“I don't wanna be “forced” to keep Arsenic out of the chicken I sell.”
Boo Hoo
“I don' Wanna share the planet with people who aren't just like me”
boo hoo
“I don't wanna pay the people that work for me”
boo hoo
“i don't wanna help pay for the highway, or the fire department or the hospital, if it might help someone whom I don't like”
boo hoo
“I wanna keep using words like “nigger” and “spic” and “cunt” and “faggot”, because I am more Important than any one's feelings”
boo hoo
“it is my Right to be a bully and a fool”
boo hoo
“it is my Right to poison the Earth”
Boo Hoo
“I don' wanna accept that there are more ways of viewing the World than just mine. Mine is Right, after all.”
Boo Fucking Hoo.
“I don't wanna join the 21st Century, I'm more comfortable in the 11th”
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Here is a 1997 Debate between George McGovern and Bill Buckley( )



In light of the ascendancy of the Right since McGovern ran for President, 1972, I think it's instructive how Buckley relies on veiled insults and innuendo to “win”...while McGovern relies on the strength of Ideals.
This makes me think about how the Right “won”, in the last 40 years.
It relied on Ridicule, and Erasure.
I didn't even hear of McGovern until circa 2004.
He didn't exist.
“Liberalism” was universally regarded as a synonym for “weak” and “stupid” and “dangerous”.
Bluster and Bullying and the studious ignoring of Objective Reality...the widespread use of Euphemism and a Hyper-Selective remembrance of History.
Buckley never rebuts McGovern's assertion(backed up readily with facts) that Reagan tripled the debt and grew the deficit and set about systematically destroying the Public Sector and the Labor Movement and embroiling us in numerous brushfire wars and invasions and skulduggery(some of which we are still feeling the direct effects of(Afghanistan, Central and South America, etc).
Never is it mentioned that it was Nixon who opened up China to American Corporations, and took care of our debt by leaving Breton Woods, and essentially reneging on it(the “party of responsibility”), and that it was Reagan who jiggered the tax code and business law to encourage the outsourcing and one sided globalisation...all the while lying incessantly about what they were doing and why.


Buckley's references to “Illegitimacy” as a major problem goes without comment....perhaps George didn't want to dignify it.
It is a red herring, as it is only a Big Fucking Deal if one is ensconced firmly in Patriarchy, while never investigating the actual Causes of the purportedly rampant “Illegitimacy”(like bad men, and the moribund level of wages, vs. inflation).

It's worth a watch, if you have time.
Compare Buckley's performance with what's coming on TV out of Boulder tonight.

…...................................


Rhymes with “rock”....



(at least that's how I've been pronouncing it...)

Charles Koch is disappointed.

(http://www.alternet.org/tea-party-and-right/charles-kochs-frankenstein-problem-he-created-tea-party-monster-and-now-hes)

(I couldn't read the original article, on the WSJ, because I've already used up my free ones(who keeps track, and how?!))

Seems Mr Kock doesn't like all the shouting and crazy-talk, the witch hunts and
shameless hatred,the frothing ignorance and epidemic foot in mouth disease... that he and his friends helped to create.
As I've said so many times, going back years, they fed the Rough Beast meth, beat it with a hammer, and set it loose upon the world in order to shore up the relevance of “conservative values”, after so many folks have finally noticed that the 40 year experiment in Piss on My Head is, and has been, a fucking disaster, along with the attendant “Culture Wars” and the general effort to prove that “Government is Dysfunctional”(by making damned sure that it is).
Now that Beast is running(sic) the government that they despise...running it right into the ground....but because folks like the Kock Brothers(and Coors and Mellon Scaif and a hundred others, going back 80+ years) have so lavishly funded this “movement” and have been so organised and sneaky...destroying Democracy in a very real sense...there's nothing to be done.
The Beast will have to tire itself out...or, more likely, engender such a reaction from everyone else that all the Gerrymandering, Voter Suppression and related Shenanigans in the world wont be enough to keep the Goptea going.
They have no Ideas, it turns out...at least none that will be Insane enough to pass muster with the Beast.
Soon, I expect Rush or Beck or that Savage “person” to call Charles out for being a “Rino”...or even a “DemocRat! Plant”.
Such is life for billionaires who venture into 21st Century Righty Politics.
Eventually, they get eaten.



Friday, October 23, 2015

Patricia



It began in earnest about an hour ago(9pm, CDT), in my Left Big Toe.
As if it were in a vise.
It quickly spread through the Gravel Ankle and up the leg, and by now it was in both legs...all the way to the Titanium Hip, then the bone one.
Now it is in every joint.
I had already experienced a lesser Weather Pain Event, not two days ago...before I knew there was a Hurricane approaching. We had the usual Fall Low Pressure System, and I lay around for half a day and felt much better.
Achy and Irritable, but ok.
That's how today has been, until the switch was flipped and Patricia moved into range of my Skeletal Barometer.
Now, I am Toast.
It hurts like hell, and I know from experience that it will only get worse.
The damned thing is heading straight for me, barring the High over Colorado dipping unexpectedly to the South.
The TV Weather Guy out of Austin has been breathlessly telling us about maybe a foot of rain over the next two days, as our Indigenous Low meets up with Patricia's extraordinary Low(946 MB as of 20 minutes ago).
I felt this one at around 800 miles away.
Wilma, I felt at right at 1000, as it crossed Cuba...and Katrina, at 1100, as it passed over Florida.
Unlike those storms, I was paying attention to Patricia's approach...I was expecting this, in other words, rather than attempting to control for such expectations.
I still have no idea what the mechanism is that's at work with this phenomena(Weather Pain).
I hypothesize that it is either perturbations in the Gravity Field, or some other Scalar Field of which we are currently unaware.
As always, Research Grants are welcome.




Thursday, October 22, 2015

On Hill on the Hill

(or, Gowdy-Doody gets trapped in a broom closet)

(I ain't gonna vote for her in the Primary, but this pic is priceless)


Mr. Gowdy
I understand that you're taking one for the team...likely in the hopes that Hillary will get mad and say something that can be useful in a 30 second spot...
However...To all of us non-Goptea Nutbags out here in the Nation, you are looking increasingly like a fool.
If you stop now, you might be able to retire with a little dignity(if that matters to you)...and go be a librarian or lawyer or something.
folks won't even remember, after a while.
The cat is effectively out of the bag that this is an entirely political exercise...at least for (again) all of us Non-Nutbags.
The ones who believe that there's fire where there's only copious hot air are already gonna vote for the craziest goptea possible...the rest of us will not be convinced, if we haven't been already.
There's no "there" there.
So what's the point?
Please stop...this mendacious windbaggery should be beneath Members of the US Congress.

Monday, October 12, 2015

Vile, Vapid Vacuity

Sinclair the Prophet


I've been avoiding News for several weeks...which means that I have limited my news consumption(unpack that terminology!) to a once a week perusal of Huffpo and Alternet and Right Wing Watch, with a weekly binge-watch of Rachel and Chris Hayes.
I have heard things floating in from the living room in the morning rush to get ready for school, as well...as I attempted mightily to not hear them(by blasting such disparate gems as Scheherazade(sp-2-(Rimmsky-Korsakov(sp-3))) and various Strauss Waltzes).
It is to no avail....the Republican Party is in total chaos, which should surprise no one, at all.
“Circus” doesn't even begin to cover it.
Watching a week's worth of Maddow this morning, I keep thinking of Sinclair Lewis.
From “It Can't Happen Here” to “Elmer Gantry” to “Mainstreet” to “Arrowsmith” to “Babbit”....he was fucking prophetic.
He managed to zero in on the vapid materialism and jingoistic non-sense that has come to define us, as a nation, and he did it almost a hundred years ago.
I admit that I do not care for his style...I find him hard to read, and am constantly reminded of Middlemarch...which I also didn't enjoy reading...but his portrait of the Ugly American is spot on, from where I sit.

The Vulgariat...the Hillbilly Borg...the Lumpenbillies...
Morons, ascendant!
“Know-Nothing-ism” as a thing to aspire to while apparently hating everyone, including themselves.

The Democratic Party has it's large problems, of course...Hillarious as the face of Corporate Shillery...portraying a “Liberal” as a Brand, devoid of meaning.
But the Dem's existential crisis is nothing compared to the GOP.
They embody the Stupid and the Liar, all mixed up together.
To be an effective Liar, one must have some intelligence...and an ability to remember one's lies.
This is impossible if one is also Stupid.

….unless the folks you are lying to are even stupider:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UhMepzqJvIw
( please cut and paste, it's worth it)

During the Bush Darkness, I thought it couldn't get more surreal....that the dangerous ideologues who emerged during that era were the nadir of American socio-political discourse.
The near-Fascism evident in those folks...and their local analogs...was frightening.
Then came Tea...
and I watched as the GOP fractured, and the “Conservative Movement” devolved into a gaggle of shouting illiterate assholes, so very proud of their ignorance and so certain in their incoherence.
As I've lamented so often...here was the Anti-Enlightenment personified.
“Get Back into the Cave!!!” is their rallying cry.

The “Freedom Caucus” that currently has it's claws around the throat of the GOP is a minority...not only in the Electorate as a whole, but in the GOP, itself.
The True Believers would fit into a couple of drunk tanks, and yet they have managed to break the US Government...paralyzing Congress to such an extent that nothing can get done.
If Boner of Orange decides to quit on schedule, the impossible scenario of there being No Speaker of the House becomes a reality....which means that nothing at all can get done, because the House will not be able to legally convene.
Will anyone notice, after 6 years of so little getting done, anyway?LOL.
Whom will the shouters and mouthbreathers blame?
Will it be Obama's fault?
Petty and Stupid, the Tea People I know are oblivious to what's actually happening...to them, Obama is an Evil Dictator and the country is in Ruins, over-run by Muslim Mexicans and Communist Libtards bent on making them have Gay Marriages while outlawing “christianity”, and taking all their guns.

“ They were like the Sunday-afternoon mob starting at monkeys in the Zoo, poking fingers and making faces and giggling at the resentment of the more dignified race... They were staggered to learn that a real tangible person, living in Minnesota, and married to their own flesh-and-blood relation, could apparently believe that divorce may not always be immoral; that illegitimate children do not bear any special and guaranteed form of curse; that there are ethical authorities outside of the Hebrew Bible; that men have drunk wine yet not died in the gutter; that the capitalistic system of distribution and the Baptist wedding-ceremony were not known in the Garden of Eden;... that there are Ministers of the Gospel who accept evolution; that some persons of intelligence and business ability do not always vote the Republican ticket straight;... that a violin is not inherently more immoral than a chapel organ... 'Where does she get all them the'ries?' marveled Uncle Whittier Smail.”- from “Mainstreet”

The GOP, and by virtue of their 40 year hegemony on “Thought”, the rest of us, are wallowing in confusion...and this is not unexpected.
The entire Counter-Revolution was based on contradictory lies, incoherent obfuscation and rank hypocrisy. The Coalition of “Establishment GOP”, Big Bidness and the Lumpenbillies was never about Truth and the American Way...it was about getting and keeping Power.
The latter of the three legs of that shaky stool were either blind to this reality, or purposefully pushed it below their awareness.
The Reagan Mythos was, rather, about Believing Real Hard in things that do not make sense when scrutinized and help up against one another.


“A village in a country which is taking pains to become altogether standardized and pure, which aspires to succeed Victorian England as the chief mediocrity of the world, is no longer merely provincial, no longer downy and restful in its leaf-shadowed ignorance. It is a force seeking to conquer the earth... Sure of itself, it bullies other civilizations, as a traveling salesman in a brown derby conquers the wisdom of China and tacks advertisements of cigarettes over arches for centuries dedicate to the sayings of Confucius. Such a society functions admirably in the production of cheap automobiles, dollar watches, and safety razors. But it is not satisfied until the entire world also admits that the end and joyous purpose of living is to ride in flivvers, to make advertising-pictures of dollar watches, and in the twilight to sit talking not of love and courage but of the convenience of safety razors.”-Ibid.

After all these years of Liberals being driven into obscurity(some of it deserved), and leaving the Coalition of the Worst America has to Offer in complete control of the Government and worse, the Mind of America, here we are , today...the top 3-4 GOP Presidential Hopefuls are blatantly Ignorant, Pandering and even closer to being outright Fascists that even I would have predicted.
The front runner, in spite of all his foot in mouth disease, is the perfect example, as I've said, of Lewis' Buzz Windrip:

“He was an actor of genius. There was no more overwhelming actor on the stage, in the motion pictures, nor even in the pulpit. He would whirl arms, bang tables, glare from mad eyes, vomit Biblical wrath from a gaping mouth; but he would also coo like a nursing mother, beseech like an aching lover, and in between tricks would coldly and almost contemptuously jab his crowds with figures and facts — figures and facts that were inescapable even when, as often happened, they were entirely incorrect.”-from “It Can't Happen Here”

As I've said recently, Trump could win the thing.
According to my surveillance, if Sanders gets the Dem Nomination, what used to be called Reagan Democrats will join their frothing brethren in championing Trump....which would likely spell the end of the USA as we know it.

“The Senator was vulgar, almost illiterate, a public liar easily detected, and in his "ideas" almost idiotic, while his celebrated piety was that of a traveling salesman for church furniture, and his yet more celebrated humor the sly cynicism of a country store.
Certainly there was nothing exhilarating in the actual words of his speeches, nor anything convincing in his philosophy. His political platforms were only wings of a windmill.”
― Sinclair Lewis, It Can't Happen Here

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

On the Permission to Read.



My youngest son came home the other day and said he needed me to write a note giving him permission to read the Hobbit.
I was taken aback, as I don't remember ever—ever!---needing permission from anyone to read any book I wanted.
His teacher told me the next day that it is due to certain parents who object to things like Harry Potter,etc. ---due to their fear of witchcraft.
….as if reading a book about a boy-wizard will undo the religious indoctrination that their particular children undoubtedly receive.
I suppose that books about Climate Change...or Dinosaurs...would also potentially find themselves on the list of books requiring Permission—wouldn't want to place Creationism, let alone Exxon's version of Science, on shaky ground.
In the last ten years or so, the education policy of the State of Texas has taken a turn towards the dangerously ignorant...sanitizing the curriculum of anything disturbing or less than “We're Awesome!!”...replacing Jefferson with McCarthy...and Biology with Myth...Our History(Warts and all) with a Rah-Rah Jingoism better suited for tin pot autocracies and the truly backwards.
There is an opportunity, for next year, to counter this slide into idiocy:The American Library Association puts on a full court press at the end of September with Banned Books Week(link below).

A cursory look at the ALA's material on Banned Books...including the History of such perversity(Inquisition, Savonarola, the Nazi's, Fahrenheit 451)...is instructive.
That a vocal minority of Holier-Than-Thou shouters, with overlarge toes, can effectively dictate what is available freely in the Public School's Library is frightening in this light:
So much for the Enlightenment concept of Free Inquiry, and Kant's rallying cry of Sapere Aude!(“Let us dare to Know!”).
A Free Country would find this kow-towing to the minority of the backwards anathema.
Perhaps having a policy of “Opt Out”, rather than “Opt In” would be an acceptable first step...
I understand that the current climate of fear and hatred is hard to counter, and that those who are driving this climate are very vocal and quick to shout at anyone who resists their hegemony, but I firmly believe that it is our duty as educators to challenge such myopic anti-intellectualism....such simplistic, sound-bite demagoguery.
We should endeavor to light fires in these kids' Minds, in order to create curious and thoughtful adults, rather than homogenous and well behaved drones who persist in their parents' Flat Eartherism.
The last time I was in the Elementary/Jr High Library, I noticed a sort of shrine, with a book by Sarah Palin in the center.
I wonder if permission is required for that book to be read....


Principiis Obsta; Caveat Ruinam.



http://americanlibrariesmagazine.org/blogs/the-scoop/banned-books-week-roundup-2015/

http://www.ncte.org/positions/statements/righttoreadguideline

http://www.dallasnews.com/news/community-news/park-cities/headlines/20141114-highland-park-isd-says-six-books-will-require-parental-permission.ece

Friday, September 25, 2015

Epiphany in Real Time.




So the Pope invades Washington DC...says a bunch of stuff that sounds a whole lot like Jesus...and Boner of Orange sees the light, through copious tears, and Frikking Resigns the next day!!!
lol.
...and in the closed door meeting wherein he surprised his Fellow Travelers with this news, he recited the Prayer of St Francis, of all things.
(in full, below, because St. Francis is prolly my favorite Christian )

So now we'll be treated to an appointment to Boehner's seat by Governor John Kasich, who sometimes pretends to have a soul...and then to what will likely be a raucous and contentious circle jerk, with machete juggling, to pick the new Speaker.
The Nattering Nabobs are swooning over that McCarthy Guy...the one that Kevin Spacey followed around to learn how to Be Frank Underwood....but I just don't see the Nutters going for that.
He's not near crazy enough.
Perhaps McCarthy could disembowel a Hippie on the steps of the Capital...
That might just do the trick....
I expect further disintegration of the GOP, and less mannerly and polite discourse(!?!?).
I allege that they have yet to truly plumb the depths of decorum and taste.
There are lower lows, yet to be achieved.
Enjoy.

….......................................

Prayer of St. Francis of Assisi


Lord, make me an instrument of Your peace.
Where there is hatred let me sow love,
Where there is injury let me sow pardon,
Where there is doubt let me sow faith,
Where there is despair let me give hope,
Where there is darkness let me give light,
Where there is sadness let me give joy.
 
O Divine Master, grant that
I may not try to be comforted but to comfort,
Not try to be understood but to understand,
Not try to be loved but to love.
Because it is in giving that we receive,
It is in forgiving that we are forgiven,
And it is in dying that we are born to eternal life



Friday, September 18, 2015

Jumping the Shark as Political Philosophy




So....

Fake Videos are Real.
Obama is a Kenyan Socialist/Commie/Muslim/Fascist.
Vaccines Cause Disease.
Supply Side Economics was a Resounding Success.
So was the Drug War...which needs to be immediately reinstated.
99.8% of Climate Scientists are not only Wrong...they are also part of a Vast Liberal Conspiracy to eat up all the apple pie and suck out our Precious Bodily Fluids.
Marihuana(sic) is Just Like Heroin.
Black People are Lazy.
Latinos are Disease Ridden Interlopers.
Women belong in the Kitchen.
Your Sex Life is inherently the Business of the GOP.
Gays have a nefarious Agenda to subvert America and turn us all Gay and Hitlery.
Poor People are merely getting their Just Desserts.
Jesus never said anything about helping the Poor...so Fuck Them.
That same Jesus was a Corporatist War Mongering Hate Machine who loved the Rich and Powerful, and always...always...sided with the Status Quo.
Corporations are People...the are People in their own right...and also consist of People; while Unions are not People....nor do they consist of People.
Health and Safety(and Roads) are a Privilege, not a Right.
Cops are Moral Arbiters and can do no wrong...if they shoot someone, the Shoot-ee must have deserved it.
Protest and Free Speech are Rights that belong only to Corporations and White, Right Wing Christians are the only ones who rightly possess Freedom of Religion..
When in Doubt, Brandish Your Gun.

Did I miss anything?

Friday, September 11, 2015

on the proliferation of external penile implants


(just something that's been rattling around in my brain for some time)

I've never cared for guns.
Loud and dangerous, and often to be found in the hands of the stupid and the hateful, in my experience.
But I've been strangled for voicing unpopular opinions...and had an insane neighbor who stalked us for 7 years, doing all manner of strange and disturbing things...so I learned to shoot, and clean, and maintain firearms...I learned the relevant law.
...and the cat is , literally, out of the bag.
Guns are everywhere, in Texas.
it seems the "debate" has been lost.
So I am, and have been, a Hippie with Guns.
However, I detect the possibility of an unexpected outcome in all of this barrel stroking.


{{“”Texas Weapons Laws
The General Firearms Laws of The State of Texas:

In Texas, it is generally illegal to carry a handgun outside of a person’s own premises. However, a person may carry, either open or concealed, in a non-threatening or alarming manner, a shotgun or rifle.

However even with a handgun, in Texas, there are several places where a person may possess a handgun legally without the benefit of a Texas Concealed Handgun License (CHL). These places include:
A person’s residence or other real property under their control.
A person’s private motor vehicle or watercraft if the handgun is concealed, and the person is legal to possess a firearm, is not a member of a street gang, and is not engaged in the commission of a crime greater than a Class C misdemeanor traffic or boating violation.
A person engaged in lawful fishing, hunting, or other sporting activity on the immediate premises where the activity is conducted, or is en route between the premises and the persons’ residence or motor vehicle, if the firearm is a type commonly used in the activity.
While storing a loaded firearm, it must be in a place which cannot be accessed by a child under the age of 17, or secured with a trigger lock if there is reason to know that a child under 17 may gain access to the firearm.
The Concealed Handgun Laws of The State of Texas:

Texas allows concealed handguns to be legally carried with a CHL issued by Texas or by a state which Texas recognizes. If a license holder is in possession of a concealed handgun, they must produce their concealed weapons license along with another valid identification upon the demand of a police officer.

Private property owners are allowed to prohibit the carrying of concealed handguns on their property if they provide proper legal notice of trespassing by a CHL holder with a concealed handgun given in compliance with Texas Penal Code §30.06. Notice may be given verbally or in writing with a statutory warning or by signage with the statutory warning in English and Spanish, in one inch high block letters posted in a conspicuous place.

Further, even with a CHL, these weapons may not be carried concealed under the following circumstances pursuant to Texas Penal Code §46.03 & §46.035:
A concealed handgun cannot be carried while the person is intoxicated.
At an amusement park if a proper TPC §30.06 warning is given.
In a place of religious worship if a proper TPC §30.06 warning is given.
In a hospital or nursing home if a proper TPC §30.06 warning is given.
At any correctional facility or within 1000 feet of a correctional facility designated as a place of execution on a day of execution if proper notice is posted.
In any court or offices used by a court unless pursuant to written regulations or written authorization from the court.
At any polling place on Election Day.
At any meeting of any governmental body if proper notice is posted pursuant to Texas Penal Code §30.06.
At any high school, collegiate, professional sporting event or interscholastic event, unless the license holder is a participant in the event and a handgun is used in the event.
At any racetrack.
Inside any building or passenger transportation vehicle of a public or private school or educational institution.
In the premises of an establishment licensed to dispense alcoholic beverages for consumption on the premises, which derives 51% or more of its income from the sale of alcoholic beverages and has a conspicuous warning prohibiting firearms, if posted.
Inside the secured area of any airport, however a person may carry any legal firearm into the terminal that is encased for shipment purposes and checked as baggage to be lawfully transported on an aircraft pursuant to airline and TSA regulations.
The State of Texas Justification For the Use of Force & Deadly Force:

In Texas, there are several situations where a person is justified in using force or deadly force.

A person may use force against another to the degree the person believes that it is reasonably necessary to protect themselves or a third person from another’s unlawful use of force.

Deadly force is defined as the degree of force likely to cause death or serious bodily injury, which includes actually firing a gun. However, the threat of using deadly force by displaying a weapon, if it is intended to cause apprehension that an actor will use deadly force if necessary, is defined by law as the use of force not deadly force.

In Texas it is presumed that deadly force was reasonably necessary if it is used against an individual who was unlawfully or forcibly entering or entered into an occupied home, business, or vehicle or is attempting to forcibly remove another against his or her will from an occupied home, business, or vehicle. Deadly force is also presumed to be justified to prevent the commission or attempted commission of murder, aggravated kidnapping, sexual assault, aggravated sexual assault, robbery and aggravated robbery.

In Texas if a person is present in any place where they have a right to be, they have no duty to retreat and have the right to use force, including deadly force, if they reasonably believe that it is necessary to prevent death or serious bodily injury to themselves or to prevent the commission of murder, aggravated kidnapping, sexual assault, aggravated sexual assault, robbery or aggravated robbery.""}}

(from:https://www.texaslawshield.com/portal/texas-gun-law/)

(a good enough exposition on current Texas law...just easier to read than the law, itself. accurate, as near as I can tell)

The recent rash of police shootings...rather the recent explosion of police violence that we are suddenly aware of, due to the ubiquity of cameras...points out a perhaps unforeseen flaw in all of this.
To be perfectly and preemptively clear: I'm nowhere near stupid enough, let alone Violent enough, to attempt to "defend myself" from the cops, at some traffic stop or whatever....no knock raids would probably be a different story(see relevant law, above)
But I have detected the presence of a lot of stupid and/or violent people out there, in the world.
I would think that the Cop Lobby would be on the front line of the gun control argument.
These two phenomena...out of control police, vs. the de facto policy of guns for everyone! and Shoot First...are bound to intersect, at some point.

I can think of two interrelated remedies for this potential bloodletting.
1. cop policy...this us.v.them thing that cops seem to have, apparently derived from what goes on in the academy...the pseudo-philosophy of "broken Windows"...the profiling schema that is used, whether it's written or not...all of that must be revisited. It appears to me, too, that there's a lot of former military folks, many with possibly untreated PTSD, in cop shops across the nation. the line between soldier and cop should be wide and bright, as a cursory review of history would indicate.
The idiotic, and ineffective(by their own criteria!) Drug War must be ended. Now.
That 40+ year experiment has run long enough. Results are in. Time to pay attention to them.
And speaking of Drugs: it has recently been reported that a great number of Cops are abusing Steroids, which may play in to the obvious Paranoia and Rage that is often on display when one encounters a Cop, and fails to bow and scrape abjectly enough.

2. I can see no good reason not to have reasonable limits placed on firearms purchases.
I expect immediate cries of "Second Amendment!" to ensue...but consider: there are reasonable limits on the rest of the bill of rights.
Prohibitions on yelling 'fire' in a crowded theater...far too many "exceptions" to the fourth amendment...none of them are absolute.
Why should the second, alone among the amendments, be so?
To follow the "logic" of the NRA and Open Carry people out to it's logical end, I should assert my 'right' to tactical nukes and ak-ak guns.
it's ridiculous.
a shoring up of the mental health apparatus would do wonders, as well.
I fully realise, that all of these little points will be seen by some as akin to criticising Israel.
Flame on.


http://www.alan.com/2014/10/11/mayor-a-gang-of-armed-white-men-will-be-standing-along-parade-route-do-not-be-alarmed/

Debbie Wasserman Schultz



Debbie,

I was under the impression that we were the “Democratic” Party.
As such, I had assumed that we would at least try to embody,somewhat, the whole universe of Ideals that that word--”Democracy”-- entails and implies.
This would mean having more debates...in order to flesh out the complex and so far murky issues that confront us.
It would also mean having a wider conversation on these issues...out here in the world.
Finally, it would entail allowing the Voters to decide who will be the Nominee...in a Democratic Fashion.

We should not be anointing anyone.

That's what the other side does.
We were supposed to be different.
But we're not nearly different enough...I am continually frustrated and angry that “my” Party still has no Spine...no Stones.
I am ashamed that the Leaders are as terrified little children before the ongoing attacks and eliminationism of the Others.
I am livid that the Movers and Shakers of “my” Party continue to attempt to Out Republican the Republicans on things like Surveillance and Economics and the Drug War and a million other things...seemingly too afraid to challenge the Right Wing Counter-Revolution.
After all, the Thugs might call you “soft”...or even “Liberal”(shudder)...
Now Mellon-Scaif has been dug up and reanimated, set to staggering around, mouthing insults...and no one is allowed to mention that the last Clinton Administration virtually Enabled the mess that followed.
We can't even speak intelligently about the Bush Darkness...especially on this day...lest we be labeled “crazy” by the most demonstrably Crazy sociopolitical movement in Modern Times.
I want a Party that is courageous in it's diagnosis of the dysfunction—one that will tell it like we all know that it is—that is unafraid of Giant Immortal Fictions, long escaped the New Deal Fence and become Supranational... and of loudmouthed ignoramuses , parroting the Corps(e)world Mythology.
In other words, I want a Bernie Sanders Version of the Democratic Party...and look!
There he is...ignored by “my” Party and the Corporate Media Conglomerates that “My” Party helped to install.
“Democratic” means “of,characterized by,or advocating democracy”.
You, and the rest of the Big Wigs, should put that on a poster and hang it on your wall, or tattoo it on your foreheads.
Sanders is what we've been waiting for for most of my life.
Y'all should get with it, and remember who you work for.
(and no...I don't have any money to send...not even $5... so save what money you have, and stop wasting it on appeals for blood from a turnip)

Usque ad Finem,
Amfortas the Hippie,

Anti-Facist,Anti-Feudalist,Anti-Authoritarian,
Pro-Enlightenment.
(http://www.dsausa.org/toward_freedom)

Wallow





It's “Patriot Day”, and the firetrucks are lined up around the square, and the networks are eschewing whatever is actually happening in the world in order to replay several hours of (then) live footage from the morning of September 11th, 2001.
My kids, neither of whom were yet born at the time, will be herded into the auditorium for patriotic songs and a recital of the anodyne pablum that passes for Civic Religion, these days. This will be accepted without question—it is quite normal, now.
The Mundanes will all have a tear in their eye, and a wistful version of the thousand yard stare, as flags are raised and lowered to half-staff and aging Veterans will stand there solemnly, in full regalia.
We will all be reminded who the Enemy is...and why we should hate them... and at no time will brains be engaged, aside from the Lizard-ish portions.
Those of us with perfectly legitimate questions about that day and all that led up to it and all that has come after will be relegated to the Rubber Room, if not shouted down in hyperpatriotic spittle and froth.

Are Mexicans still mistaken for Osama?
Are Hindus still beaten in alleyways in retribution?
Will Ed Snowden finally be welcomed home, his public service acknowledged at long last?
The only parade I want to see today is the one where Lil George and Darth Cheney and the rest of the warmongering gang of liars and Empire Builders are frog marched into a Federal Courtroom.
But that, in yet another surreal display of irony, is known as “living in the past”...and anyway, it was all Obama's fault.(a common belief in Lumpenbilly circles, it turns out)
Charley Wilson and St Ron the Befuddled will get nary a mention...nor will the NSA,CIA,FBI , save as heroes—not as unindicted, and probably unintentional, (being charitable) co-conspirators and incompetents.
The Ignored Memo(“terrorists to use planes in attack on East Coast”) will not be remembered, either...and Rumsfeld's 9-10 admission that the Pentagon had “misplaced” Two Trillion Dollars will remain apocryphal and un-noticed.

Instead of Discourse and Discussion, today will be an exercise in Operant Conditioning, reinforcing the necessary Fear and Confusion and Xenophobia.
It will be an almost perfect expression of everything that Orwell and many others warned us about--but that, too, will be overlooked by the Official Mouthpieces.
“Never Forget”, they will all say...and I add, “except for all the questions and suspicions and even the actual proven crimes and skullduggery...”
Those things can safely be forgotten...in fact, it is our Patriotic Duty to forget them.
R.I.P, Mike Ruppert.
You were right, all along.


Thursday, September 10, 2015

On the Definition of Insanity



Oh, look:

(http://www.bostonglobe.com/opinion/editorials/2015/09/08/bring-back-war-drugs/h2wWV7ojkje4P5dwIbmgPK/story.html)

Bill Fucking Bennett, Mr Virtue, wants to bring back the War on Drugs.
...because “it worked”.
He and John Walters, both water-carriers for the Bush Crimen Familia, were apparently released from the pods they've been kept in, reanimated, and set to walking around, parroting the same tired old nonsense.
“Just say No”, and “Fill up the Prisons”...which themselves are open Bazaars of Dope Pushing...were failures then—and they would be failures, now.
Those policies played a large role in destabilising South and Central America, leading directly to last year's refugee crisis, and the ongoing flight from the war zones that were created there, as well as the “Low Intensity Conflict” in Mexico, which looks a lot like a weird sort of Revolution(by the Cartels), from where I sit.
Here at home, these policies have torn apart families, ruined far more lives than drugs ever did, gutted the First, Fourth,Fifth, Sixth and Eighth Amendments to the Constitution, and led inexorably to the distrust, if not hatred, between cops and poor folks and people of color that has been on such display of late.
Yeah...lets double down.
Fuckers.
Where are the men in white coats when we need them.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Appiah, et alia.



This, from one Kwame Anthony Appiah:

“If cultural difference isn't the heart of the problem, then teaching people to respect other cultures won't be the solution. What will be? Creating an overlay of a common culture - a civic culture - where everyone recognizes that people are entitled to respect whatever their gender or sexuality, their race or religion, and wherever they came from.”

(http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/time-to-lead/the-multicultural-mirage/article1214471/)

I only discovered this dude last week, while engaged in a Wikiwander in “Cosmopolitanism”....the idea of being a Citizen of Earth.
Mr. Appiah is remarkable.
I come to Philosophy from well outside the Academy...through Books.
I started, as I've said, with Nietzsche...and just sort of haphazardly made my way through a rather large part of the canon of Philosophy, based primarily in the West. A bunch of Dead Guys.
There was no Internet in those days, so I was limited to this haphazardness...bumping into Kant, or Plato, or Spinoza.
I've managed to cover a lot of bases by this method, but it has left me all alone and disconnected from Contemporary Philosophy.
I had never heard of John Rawls, for instance, until my rather late discovery of the Web.
There are many more Philosophers alive today than I suspected...and many more in the 20th Century than I knew of for most of my life.
What all of this led to is my necessarily forming my own opinions and stance...and then, often, finding that I had arrived independently at the sort of same place as my hitherto unknown contemporaries...like Mr Appiah.
I never really liked the American Philosophers that I did know of...the Analytical and such...too reductionist and materialist and often far too specific and narrow for my tastes.
The closest I came to them is Russel.
This also engendered a somewhat scattered Philosophy of my own...I find it hard to be “of a school”.
I take what I like...what doesn't strike me as evil or silly or pedantic...from wherever I find it.
I've lately come to realise that I should probably attempt to put all of that together, somehow, into a semblance of a coherent whole.
On reflection, “My” Philosophy seems pretty coherent, to me...but that may be due to being quite alone with it for my whole life.
I've encountered very few other Feral Philosophers in my time, and only 3 of the Academic Variety; I really am a Vox clamatis in Deserto.
As with just about every other Human Relationship I've had, even with these rare specimens I never knew how much to include in a given argument or ramble or tirade or sermon...I had no clue what they had read, or even what was the common list of “what philosophers read”...or even if there was such a list.
Smart chick goes off on Foucault, before I had ever heard of him...and I go off on Uncle Friedrich or Kant, who she's never read(even summarily dismissed).
Smart dude goes off on Plato...but has never read poetry or fiction or anything about geology or archaeology or Mythology—they both had been Silo-ed into “this philosophical school”,or that, and led to ignore the rest of Humanity's Endowment.
I, on the other hand, have always been very Broad in my interests. I found it impossible to narrow my field of inquiry.(and, therefore, pick a Major,lol)
The Others I have encountered seemed narrow, to me, in this way.
It is a good thing, I reckon, that I only now come across folks like Judith Shklar, or Richard Rorty...let alone radicals like Hakim Bey.
Reckon I have a certain Grounding, due to my independent development.
This long experience of being alone among the Mundane means that I have little experience engaging with other Philosophers...of whatever Leaning.
The Web, and especially the various Fora and even Facebook, has at least allowed me to argue my point—but even there, I find that my interlocutors either agree with me on most everything, or are so silly and/or loathsome,that they are hardly worth the time, save as erstwhile practice dummies.(“Headpiece filed with straw, alas...”)
Every single representative of the latter group has been an unknowing victim of Certainty, and the vast majority have been of the Right, whether they knew it, or not.
The former group are those whom I count as “Friends”, although I will likely never meet them, in the flesh.(Some, I have “known” for almost 20 years).
“How nice,” I say to myself,” to find someone in Meatspace who is as well read and thoughtful as I think I am”,(having had no one to hold myself up to, as in a mirror).
I often wonder if I would even recognise such a creature...let alone Like them.
I simply have no experience save that of being the Smartest Guy in the Room, habitually misunderstood, and often regarded as insane.
This state of affairs has been difficult to articulate, as it is(as far as I know) unusual...it goes beyond simple loneliness, or lack of beer drinking or fishing buddies.
Indeed, it contributes...more than anything else...to that feeling of being an Anomaly, an Alien, that I have so often referred to.
Hence, my biggest regret is my choice of University.
Sam seemed like another world entirely, when stacked next to the little backwards places I came from.
How was I to know?
I had heard implied from all and sundry that “college was college”, that it didn't matter that much.
In retrospect, I should have pushed for Brown or Cornell or somewhere.
However, I have considered that in such rarefied places, I maybe would not have thrived...and certainly would not have developed so eclectically as I have, out here in the world.
Would I be as Broad?
As Deep?
Or would I have been channeled into one of the narrow intellectual ruts that I so lament?
Would I have grown as disillusioned and bored as I did in Huntsville?
All of this is mere conjecture, of course.
I followed my path as I saw it, and I still maintain a certain Amor Fati regardless.
I'm quite happy with how I've turned out, all things considered...but it might be cool to have an analog intellect to bounce off of, once in a while.


Scattered Thoughts and interesting rocks.


(and the things to be found underneath)
….................................................
I've been busy, of late.
Construction of the Funky Shack and Houston in a whirlwind, and pain and Back to School...
Here are some things that have jumped up and bit me:
….......................................
Bernie

It's just the first minute or so of this:



….but I think it's indicative of where many of the American People are at, these days.
While the Right Wing's Circus rolls on, predictably, it's on the purported Left of the Aisle where the real action is.
Hillary....the One...the Shoe-In...is flailing around....and a Socialist is drawing insanely huge crowds and pulling in insanely huge small donations.
It's instructive, too, that the Corporate Media...even the tiny little niche that is actually Liberal-ish....is almost totally ignoring this groundswell of support for US, rather than ME.
We constantly hear from the DLC Sock Puppets that a vote for Bernie is a wasted vote.
That he cannot win...and that may be so.
But it ain't for lack of support.
He could fail to win due to the Machine, of which Hillary is a part.
The Electoral College is an unknown quantity....most Americans don't understand it....it is in the hands of the respective Parties.
Then there's all the other, sneakier, apparatus...the voting machines, and even the staffing of the myriad precincts.
I've told the Democratic Party Operatives that I've come in contact with that we should allow Democracy to work...in the Primary...and if not, we should change the name of the party to something other than “Democratic”.
But they would rather continue to disparage Liberalism and keep peddling their Third Way Neoliberalist-Lite.
The Left is fractious, by definition.
This is unfortunate, because there are very real threats out there...and I ain't talking about Mullahs in Caves.
Looky what I found in one of my wanderings:

(http://www.neopopulism.org/index.php?option=com_myblog&show=Rationalism-is-Dead-Speech-2-11-10.html&Itemid=39)

Still a tiny minority:2 guys that I can identify...but one of them writes for World Net Daily.
They are against Rationalism(!?!) and the Enlightenment, as a whole.
They make an impassioned argument, rife with the usual Righty tactics of Gish Gallop, and Red Herring, and all the rest...but ultimately ending up—Purposefully!!!-- at Neofeudalism, and near Divine Right.

This, in addition to the other bunch I found(can't find the link(film at 11)), who advocate for Corporate Citizenship....not the usual meaning of that term, but a paradigm wherein employees actually become Citizens of Exxon, or Walmart, or whatever.
Scary Monsters move unobserved beneath the floorboards of the American Right.
…...................................
Even Bernie isn't strange enough for me.

While I am all for the things on offer from our most Liberal Candidate for Prez in my lifetime:

(http://billmoyers.com/2015/07/03/social-democracy-is-100-american/)

I've taken a left turn, and drove right off the cliff.
Now I'm floating down the river:

(http://godsandradicals.org/2015/06/23/ragnarok-the-magic-of-capitalism-the-transformation-of-consciousness/)

Fascinating stuff.
They even have a Primer:
(http://godsandradicals.org/a-pagan-anti-capitalist-primer/)

and look! There's more!
This, from the Guardian:

(http://www.theguardian.com/books/2015/jul/17/postcapitalism-end-of-capitalism-begun)

Hint: It's not what ya think,lol.

All these folks emerging from cracks in the pavement, dreaming up ways to move beyond the suicide pact of Neoliberal Pseudo-Capitalism.
Like a great big field of wildflowers(careful! Some of them are poisonous), there's revolutions afoot...several millions of them, by my count.

Meanwhile, the War on Nature continues apace, and our collective efforts to so poison the world that it becomes uninhabitable reach new levels of effectiveness seemingly every day.
Underground Building Technics will likely be a growth industry, once we figure out where the beach is going to be.

Doom, she said.

But remember, that we have no idea what around 80% of the Universe even is(Dark Matter and Dark Energy) and that we each carry around with us a “Dark Biome” of unidentified DNA and RNA(up to 50% of the things living in your gut is all but alien to science).
We're nowhere near as smart and well informed as we tend to think we are.
Dig this neat animation, up and down, of what we “know” about the Universe we inhabit:

(http://htwins.net/scale2/)

..........................................

That's it.
That's what I've managed to collect in the past month or so.
Scattered, I say.
When I haven't been occupied with labor and travel and more mundane things, I've been in a number of books:
Michel Montaigne,Lucretius,W.B. Yeats, nice little intro/overview of Political Philosophy,"Minerva's Owl", by one Jeffrey Abramson...and my usual forays galore into the web wilderness, looking at things...
Now, the first couple of "cold" fronts have arrived, and I am feeling it.
El Nino means many more to come for us.

Carry the Fire.