Credit given where due….

Ffolkes,
Yesterday, it rained all day, hard, in the area where I live. A higher degree of pain than usual, with concomitant stiffness, meant I didn’t have it in me to walk the seven and a half blocks to the library in the rain, and I can’t afford the coffee shop this late in the month…. besides, it’s also over three long blocks away, with the same walk back UP the hill afterward, all in the rain. No thanks…. If I had tried either one, I’d be in bed still, come the New Year…. Also, no thanks…. Unhappily, this means my postings are a day behind, proving once again I am mostly human…… I’ve never been able to quite get it all right….

No worries, though… I decided I’m not going to stress about it; I just came back, fired the computer back up, and proceeded to write this little pre-disclaimer to maintain some clarity. I don’t think any of what is below is time-sensitive, particularly, so it will still be relevant…. and, who knows? I might even get the poem I feel percolating to drip down before I get to a posting point tomorrow, which, now, is today….. At any rate, this is a pretty decent Pearl, I think, so….. enjoy…..

Ffolkes,
I know full well why I am not a success. Wait…. Okay, that’s wrong. I know full well why I AM a success…. Wait…. Okay, that’s wrong, too…

Alright, this is the right way to start….

Most folks in the mainstream would NOT call me successful, I suppose, though I know full well I am. The reason for this discrepancy is a different understanding of the definition of the word itself, along with a somewhat different idea of what determines that definition. To the average person in our world, successful means rich in money or property; you aren’t even in the ball park if you don’t own two cars and four TVs to go with your house and boat. This, as mentioned, differs widely from my own idea of what makes a person successful, as mine has nothing whatever to do with gelt…..

I am rich in friends. I am rich in my children. And, I am rich beyond the dreams of avarice in my mind, which is all I ever wanted. When I was very young, before the age of 10, I remember hearing the phrase “If you want a life full of trouble, fill your house with treasure.” I thought about that, decided that it sounded perfectly logical, and made up my mind there and then to never make the seeking of money, or things, an important goal in my life. There are far greater riches to be found in any random Mark Twain story than in any bank, and this I believe, implicitly…..

Oh, sure, it’s nice to not have to struggle financially, and I’m smart enough that I’ve never before had to struggle as I am today with money issues. Once, back in my early twenties, I went without work for a couple of months, and it was tough for a few weeks, but then I found a job, and all was well…. The rest of the time I’ve spent just enough effort to make enough to take care of myself, and my family, once I started it, and never felt any need for more. I can’t say I’ve felt deprived, at all, for not having experienced more in the way of the rich lifestyle, as I have had all I ever wanted…..

So, in that sense, I’ve always been extremely successful, for I have always done exactly as I wished to do, and been successful at attaining all I wanted. And, I can truthfully say, I have never had a moment of worry or anguish over being threatened with, or experiencing, being robbed. It’s easy, when you know there is nothing about which to worry, for there isn’t enough to tempt any robbers. It makes for a quite serene lifestyle, all in all…..

The other side of this coin under discussion is that I simply don’t give a crap about what others think, and never have….. Maybe it’s a gift, I don’t know, but I’ve never felt that what anyone else thought about ME had any bearing on what I was to do, or think. It just never occurred to me to let what anyone else said have that kind of influence over me…… It’s always been relatively easy for me to say “f___ you” to anyone (figuratively, of course….) when they try to tell me what I SHOULD do or think….. Gift or curse, I don’t care, it works for me….

Well, now, I was going somewhere with all this bilge water; where could that have been? Ah, yes…. the fucking feds & staties….. Sorry, when I write their names, the “fuck” is mandatory; that’s the law. Since the California State Department of Social Services has decided to draw out the time during which they can fuck with me about my own money, I am once again consigned to the confines of financial purgatory. They decided, because I mentioned a word they hadn’t heard before, (to wit: diverticulosis), they decided they’d better send me to another doctor about it, thus extending the process another three or four months, minimum. This puts me right back into limbo, where I’ve languished now for close to two years…. By the time these guys finish dicking around with my case, I’ll be eligible for my regular SS, at age 66, four years from now…. Bloody Assholes!….

I could rant about it for a long time, but this intro is already past the standards set for normalcy around here, so I’d best let it go for now….. Suffice it to say, I am once again NOT A HAPPY CAMPER! Wish me luck with my patience, please, I’m going to need it….. For now, I’m going to go for a dive, to try to take my mind to some other point in the universe, where things aren’t quite so dreary and depressing as they are around here just now…. Thank goodness for books and literature, they’ve saved me all my life, and continue to do so now….. Shall we Pearl?…..
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“Anyone who isn’t confused doesn’t really know what’s going on.” — Edward R. Murrow

To Mr. Murrow’s assertion, in today’s world, I would add, “Anyone who isn’t worried, isn’t paying attention.” I saw in the news yesterday that the President has offered up Social Security as a sacrifice to the Republicans in the Congress, to bribe them into signing some other tax bill. I can’t say it surprises me, as I have said all along that I don’t trust the President, any more than I trust any office holder in this country. But, given his most recent statements during the election run-up, I’m concerned that he is already turning what he said at that time into a lie; he promised, then, to protect senior citizens, and Social Security, and Medicare, from the depredations of the conservatives. To start abrogating his duties before he is even sworn in is not a good, or hopeful, sign for the future.

This particular threat is a serious one; the cuts proposed would have a very deleterious effect on my income, and that of every senior under the aegis of SS. One article claimed it could decrease the average senior’s yearly income by more than $3000, and possibly more over the next ten years. This, without any doubt whatsoever, is a reprehensible idea, and the person(s) responsible should be taken out an shot, without ceremony or delay. These politicians seem to think that the money that is in SS is theirs, when in fact, it belongs to me, and those like me, who have been pouring a percentage of our pay into it for our entire lives. It is NOT theirs, nor should it be thought of as even public money. It belongs to the people who put it there, and should be protected from the rapacious assholes who can’t stand the idea of anyone having something they don’t control….

ROBBER, n.  A candid man of affairs.  It is related of Voltaire that one night he and some traveling companion lodged at a wayside inn. The surroundings were suggestive, and after supper they agreed to tell robber stories in turn.  “Once there was a Farmer-General of the Revenues.”  Saying nothing more, he was encouraged to continue.  “That,” he said, “is the story.” — Ambrose Bierce, “The Devil’s Dictionary”

Thomas Jefferson, in certain of his writings to other patriots, mentioned the danger to the Republic from corporations, bankers, and preachers. He was particularly clear-sighted in this respect, and saw that once the legislators had voted themselves the power to control the treasury, both the income and output, the public would be in danger of continuous, and ongoing theft of public funds. He stated this many times, but, did anyone listen? Not enough of the right people, apparently, because everything he feared has come to pass.

“The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary.” — H. L. Mencken

The legislature in today’s modern world is completely under the financial influence and control of the banks and corporations, aided by the preachers’ continuing repression/distraction of the public, to confuse the issue, and help obfuscate their actions, hiding them from public view. Anyone who does not believe this to be true is under that same influence, and should be referred back to our original statement above, i.e., you don’t really know what’s going on…… or, you are not paying attention…..

Now that Barack no longer has to worry about re-election, he can begin to show his truer colors, and screw the rest of us in the process. I told you all a while back; NO POLITICIAN can be fully trusted, either to tell the truth, or to act in the public’s interests, for they all suffer from the same issue of moral failure, and that is that they WANT to be in power.

“Whenever a man has cast a longing eye on them [public offices], a rottenness begins in his conduct.” — Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826), 1799

That desire, to have power over others, is a mental disorder, plain and simple. It is insane, both in my mind, and in scientific terms, to want to control other people like that. Even if the desire is motivated by what could be termed a moral impulse, the urge to help, the actual wielding of the power is corrupting, and soon overcomes any leftover morality, in favor of expedience.

Call the White House, and the Senate. Write them. Email them. Tell them we aren’t going to stand for this flip-flop from the President, and let them know that the true power really still does reside with the people. If we don’t, we may all end up regretting we ever listened to them….. again…..

“A statesman is a politician who places himself at the service of the nation.  A politician is a statesman who places the nation at his service.” — Georges Pompidou

As far as I can see, there are no statesmen alive today, only politicians….
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And, as in uffish thought he stood
The Jabberwock, with eyes of flame
Came wiffling through the tulgey wood
And burbled as it came
– _Jabberwocky_, by Lewis Carroll (Charles Dodgson)

If it isn’t clear to y’all by now, I love nonsense. For me, it provides the balance so necessary to a harmonious existence, as the rest of reality is so often dreary, grim-faced, and sober. (see section one, above, for clear evidence of this assertion….) And, since poetry makes anything in words better, nonsensical poetry is sheer joy for me….. It doesn’t get any better than the above, which will provide adequate balance for whatever I find and choose to go in the latter half of this section…. so, enjoy, both the poetry, and the contrasting styles…..

To Congress, with Love

Politicos don’t care much ’bout seniors and their ilk,
except for their money, I thinks;
Though they talk as if they’d cozen them in silk,
what they actually do, it stinks.

“The banks are failing, we can’t allow that!”,
steal from the aged, that’s their plan.
“Their life’s ending, that’s plainly where they’re at,”
lie shamelessly, because they can.

Maybe just once, if we all act together,
it couldn’t miss.
Right on their shoes, no matter the weather,
take careful aim, and piss.

Why the hell not?
It’s worth a shot!

~~ gigoid

Well, gosh, who knew that was in there?…..
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“Just because you’re not paranoid doesn’t mean they aren’t out to get you!” — Smart Bee

Last week, or maybe earlier, another blogger and I were both ID’d as being a bit paranoid, (self-identified, I might add) because we happen to believe at least some of the conspiracy rumors continually floating around the internet. Each of us took comfort from the above sentiment, knowing it to be 100% true, and have mutual agreement in that belief. He seems to be pretty tech-savvy, posting a lot of different types of media on his blog, so he must have similar knowledge as I of computers, and the functions of which current technology is capable. This knowledge, along with a deep understanding of human nature, is the root cause for our paranoia, and, it’s justification…..

“No excellent soul is exempt from a mixture of madness.” — Aristotle

The little laptop computer upon which I type to create these Pearls of Virtual Wisdom is an amazing machine, and fairly representative of what is available to the public these days. It has, quite simply, more computing power in it than was present in the ENTIRE WORLD when the first laptop was on the design boards, when I got my first clunky 386. What this simple fact(oid) implies is this: the government, and its supporters, the bankers, corporations, and churches, has available for their use, enough computing power to record EVERY piece of communication, of EVERY type, created each day in the ENTIRE WORLD. Along with that capability, to monitor ALL communications, it has the capability of mining that huge amount of data for significant words, phrases, and patterns that will inform them of anyone, anywhere, who is speaking in a way that is potentially against their interests.

Yep…. every single piece of published communication, via phone, internet, TV, radio, or any other form of media by which humans communicate, is vulnerable to being overheard by those in the beloved ruling class…. Allow me to assure you, the reasons for which they want this information have nothing to do with YOUR rights, or YOUR interests, nor are they going to tell you, either that they are doing it, or how often, or where, or anything about it.  In many public places, with cameras and recording devices, it is possible for them to overhear even the words we speak to each other face to face. If they wish, they can even concentrate technology on a single spot, (such as your car, your living room, or kitchen…..), and listen to every word spoken there, even if they are not within miles of the place. There is, by published report, no place left on Earth where technology cannot penetrate, to listen to what is being spoken, given the opportunity, and the time to employ the needed technology.

So, my friend and I are well aware that what we write and publish here online is perfectly available to those who care about such matters, and they WILL be listening to what EVERYONE is saying, even, or, perhaps especially, us. Since I have a tendency to rant against the very people who are listening, I doubt that my name is missing from several lists of theirs. In fact, I’d be surprised if it was missing from those lists…. if it is, they’re not paying attention…..   :-)

As I’ve said before ffolkes, be alert; the world needs all the lerts it can get. You are being watched, and listened to, whether you choose to believe it or not, so it would behoove you to, perhaps, take that into account. Please, don’t fall into that, “oh, you’re just being paranoid,” attitude, or the “well, if I don’t say anything wrong, they can’t get me,” fallacy…. One of the primary characteristics of those with the power-mongering gene is a certain irrationality that is inherent in their make-up…. They have an unfortunate tendency to act on belief and faith, not on fact, so their actions, while fairly predictable, are somewhat irrationally chosen, and don’t necessarily make any sense to those of us who use our minds for other things than reclining upon…. Remember, as Lazarus Long advises, “Always cut the cards.”…..

I have read and understood the above.  X ______________________
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Today’s effort certainly doesn’t lack for original material….. It’s understandable, to me; I’ve got a lot of stuff to say, no viable, compelling  reason not to say it, and plenty of good reasons to do so. (“Stuff” being my most versatile word…. such flexibility of meaning!…..) Having said a lot of it, I’ll leave thee be to pursue thy own ends, for the nonce. You can’t say fairer than that….. Oh, yeah, happy holidays, I guess….

Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..


Sometimes I sits and thinks,
and sometimes
I just sits.

gigoid

Kowabunga!

Unable to pass, naturally, he punts….

Ffolkes,
Damn, damn, damn…. Murphy strikes again, it seems. What with my recent stresses building up to a climax on Thursday at the Disability psyche exam, I believe I may have exhausted myself. Yesterday, I managed to get the Pearl out, and even went out in the rain to post it at the coffee shop. In that process, I found that my newly acquired advanced age has taken away some of my resistance to the weather, and I got really cold before getting home to warm up. Then, last night, I got really tired, and went to bed at 8 PM, only to awaken at 3:30 AM, wide awake, of course, and ready to write…..

As I booted up the ol’ laptop, I poured coffee, and prepared to sit down and get serious. But, upon looking at the screen, Smart Bee was missing. This, I believe, is where Murphy stepped in again. The program icon was there, on the task bar, but wouldn’t come up on the screen. Well, this had occurred previously, and only got fixed after a week of panic and contortions, by reinstalling a newly downloaded version that I had to go get from the website. That version has acted fine, until this morning, when it once again went back into wherever it is software goes when it’s messing with you….

So, here I am, once again, without my trusted source of stimulating material. For today, I have some stuff I had previously collected, but, it looks like I’ll have to do another download of Smart Bee to get it back, which won’t happen until later. SIGH….. Murphy is indeed an asshole, and I don’t care if he hears me…. he couldn’t f….k with me any worse than he already does…. (I know, tempting for him, but, you know what, f….k him, and the white horse he didn’t ride in on…..)

There are, of course, probably other sources for quotes I could use, but I’m stubborn. Stubborn, but not stupid, so I WILL look for another program similar to SB that may work for me, once I get to where Google will work for me. In the meantime, I’m stuck with what I have on hand, and that means so are you…. Hopefully, it won’t cause any great difficulties, and also hopefully, will not result in a lessening of the quality of pearls.

Having thus gotten my morning whine out of the way, I should get on with the rest of the day’s work, such as it is. The first section should be no problem; it’s a diatribe on an old familiar target. After that, well, the results will be a matter of chance…. and if anyone says that will be some kind of improvement, well, that will just be cruel…. accurate, perhaps, but cruel….. Shall we Pearl?…..
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“In my travels I have found that those who keep Heaven in view remain serene and cheerful in the darkest day. If the glories of Heaven were more real to us, if we lived less for material things and more for things eternal and spiritual, we would be less easily disturbed by this present life.” — Billy Graham, from Hope for the Troubled Heart Traveling Through

Ah, yes, more pseudo- faux wisdom from Mr. Delusional himself. Billy (what is it with these evangelical preachers and their names?…. Why would a 60 plus year-old man want to be called “Billy”? Makes me suspect some pederasty, myself, but I’m the suspicious type….) has hit upon a very valuable point here, without even being aware of the point he is making…. which is pretty typical for him. I’ve had to listen to his crap all my life, as my mother went through a period of time in my childhood where she enjoyed watching his TV revivals, and made us watch as well. For me, it worked out okay, as it gave me all the more reason to mistrust whatever the preachers were spouting off about, and there were some pretty hot Christian babes to look at, even if they couldn’t sing for shit; must have been from having no rhythm, as they danced even worse….. Hell, maybe it wasn’t dancing at all, but choreographed speaking in tongues while writhing on the stage….

Sorry, didn’t mean to wander…. any who, Billy’s assertion here, though it calls upon people to use their heads in a new way, unfortunately points the way to go that leads straight to the delusions he wishes to share. He is right that when we concentrate on our spiritual manifestation, we are less susceptible to the vagaries of reality, but, he uses the concept of Heaven as the goal, which, as we all know, is somewhat hard to prove exists. In order to accept Heaven as a reality, one must assume the belief in the other unprovable assertions made by these evangelistic (another word for “manipulative”) busybodies. Besides, what’s wrong with being disturbed by life? I’d rather be disturbed than lied to, which is what they are doing…..

“Some foolish men declare that a Creator made the world.  The doctrine that the world was created is ill-advised, and should be rejected.  If God created the world, where was He before creation?  How could God have made the world without any raw material?  If you say He made this first, and then the world, you are faced with an endless regression … Know that the world is uncreated, as time itself is, without beginning and end.” — The Mahapurana, Jinasena

You see, this makes as much sense to me as any of the stuff that the preachers and deacons tried to tell us as kids, and that Billy tries to force down the unwilling throats of adults. This philosophy at least takes reality into account in its provisions, even if it does make its own unprovable assertions…. But, most of the assertions it makes are much more logical and justifiable by evidence than are any of those made by the Christian sects. These assertions are at least verifiable according to reason, and fit in better with the observable universe. In a choice between logic and fantasy, I’ll go with logic, every time….

Fanatic: Someone who, having lost sight of his goal, redoubles his efforts. — Smart Bee (This is the last one found there, for the time being….SIGH….)

Sadly, the people who accept Billy’s nonsense are often of this ilk. No matter how much one defies their assertions by presenting logical alternatives, the believers just clutch their cherished delusions more tightly to their breast, and raise their voices in anger and angst, in order to drown out any opposing views by the din of their fervor. Actually, I, being the cruel curmudgeon I am, will often challenge these folks just to watch them explode, as it is quite an entertaining way to pass the time. Some might say that it is immoral to pick on them (it IS dishonorable to engage in a battle wits with unarmed persons, I suppose….), but, I can’t help myself. I’ve spent much of my life having to listen to these people, politely, and giving in to the admonitions to not argue with them; I’m done with that, and if I want to tease them, I damn well will….

“When any government, or any church for that matter, undertakes to say to its subjects, “This you may not read, this you must not see, this you are forbidden to know,” the end result is tyranny and oppression no matter how holy the motives.” — Robert A Heinlein, “If this goes on….”

One of the most annoying aspects of the folks like Billy, who proselytize their beliefs, dumping them on others, is the way they will do everything in their power to keep their constituents ignorant of any other views but their own. They cannot abide competition, and attempt to subvert it by brainwashing their acolytes to accept what they say, without ever trying to find out whether or not it has any validity according to any other knowledge possessed by Man. They are the people of whom St. Thomas Aquinas warned, when he said, “Beware the man of one book.” If Billy had his way, the Bible, King James version, would be the only book in the library, unless there were some approved treatises that discussed appropriately the contents of that Bible (thereby making it the same book, in essence).

This is the kind of discussion that could carry on for days, but, I’m tired of it, so we’ll bring it to a close. Billy is, all things considered, a pretty easy target, since he fits into so many of the categories that I like to make fun of…. preacher, fanatic, delusional, believes his own hype, hypocritical, sanctimonious, pompous, and sure of his own (non-existent) omniscience. It’s fun, but grows old as fast as his ideas…. I pick on him because it is obvious that he possesses a modicum of native intelligence; he just refuses to use it, and that, to me, is a crime against nature. He is smart enough to see that what he says is nonsense, but, is too cowardly, or too dishonest, to admit it. For this I hold him accountable, and thus use him as a target frequently…. because he deserves every bit of opposition we can give him…. He targets, and solicits money from, the weak-minded and the ignorant, and that, to me, is unforgivable……

If you wish to know
Why there are disasters
Of Armies and Weapons in the world
Listen to the piteous cries
From the slaughterhouse at midnight

– Old Chinese Saying
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A Question

A voice said, Look me in the stars
And tell me truly, men of earth,
If all the soul-and-body scars
Were not too much to pay for birth.

Robert Frost

Well said!…..
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In lieu of Smart Bee, I went back into the archives to find an old Pearl to use here. Serendipity struck, and I found this one, which is rather appropriate. I wrote this one four years ago, almost to the day…. these were my comments regarding the outcome of the 2008 election, and the remarks, minus one, are all still very apropos…. Just ignore the one about the lame duck, as there isn’t one this time around…. the rest of it remains valid, so, to reiterate….

Ffolkes,
Though it is my gut feeling that we can all breathe a big sigh of relief that the nightmare of the last eight years is almost over, I must caution thee against complacence. It’s now a matter of keeping an eye on both the lame duck guy and the newbie, for a while at least. It’s best not to leave them unattended for long as they tend to get into mischief if not firmly leashed. With this in mind, I offer the following….

“As one gets older, one discovers everything is going to be exactly the same with different hats on.’ — Noel Coward

“A little government and a little luck are necessary in life, but only a fool trusts either of them.” — P.J. O’Rourke

“I have never been hurt by anything I didn’t say.” — Calvin Coolidge (Let’s hope Obama can live up to that!)

And lets not forget the Wisdom of Who….

“Here’s to the new boss,
The same as the old boss….
….
So I get on my knees an pray,
we don’t get fooled again”– Pete Townshend

Y’all take care out there….

Almost eerie, isn’t it? I have to say, this country dodged a BIG bullet this election; if R&R, the consummate liars, had bought the White House, we would have been in for a very disturbing episode of history, with the outbreak of the Second American Revolution not out of the realm of possibility. I know I would have been ready to assume arms in a heartbeat….

But, reason prevailed, giving me some hope for the people of this nation, even those who have the heads firmly inserted into their bums…. I think Zippy is right on the money with this closing thought on the subject, and with that thought, we can bring the subject to a welcome close… for about 3 years, until the next group of power-hungry Republicans step up to try to steal the election….. Pay heed to Zippy’s wisdom!……..

“Disco oil bussing will create a throbbing Naugahyde pipeline running straight to the tropics from the rug producing regions and devalue the dollar!” — Zippy the Pinhead
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Well, it may not be Art, but it is Frank and Earnest….. and, sadly, it’s the best I’ve got today. Since I’m now looking at 0615 AM from the wrong side, I think I might try to go back to bed for a while, and let this all slough off my conscience. Besides, I can look at it later with a fresh eye, and see if it is worth posting, or if my early morning adventures are affecting the Pearls adversely. If that is the case, well, gosh, I just don’t know what I’ll do…. I guess I’ll find out later…..  More to come…..

Well, it’s better than I had anticipated; good enough the let fly….. I’m considering it lucky, and being thankful….. Onward into another day, ffolkes….  Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..


Sometimes I sits and thinks,
and sometimes
I just sits.

gigoid

Dozer

Kowabunga!

Plainly, it’s a case of diet reality….

Ffolkes,
As the moon looked down with massive disdain, several large specimens of domestic droid came rolling down the street. Each the size of a large dog, the droids bristled with cleaning arms and brushes, rolling on a strange assortment of wheels that looked like rubber balls on racks. One by one, they peeled off from the street to move toward houses on each side of the street, most rolling around to the back to enter. The spare shadows from the moon’s pale light gave the scene a soft, romantic air, as if the droids were off to visit their own true loves. But, even in this, a deep winter night in 2088, droids didn’t yet have girlfriends, and the man watching the parade of mechanicals was not interested in fanciful thoughts of droids in love. He only had one thought, and that thought was murder…..

Well, J.D. Robb could probably use it as a start to another novel about Eve Dallas and Roarke, but who knows if Lt. Dallas will still be a cop in 2088?…. She would only be in her late fifties to early sixties, and given the state of medical science, most likely would still be on the job. But, maybe Roarke will have convinced her to retire with him to another planet, where they’ll raise exotic food plants and little Roarkes and Eves…. Just as well, as this intro paragraph is well away from her usual opening chapters, which generally start after the murder is done…. But, it got that stuff out of my head, and that is all that really matters at this point….

Today will be another oddly constructed pearl, as I still haven’t finished the poem, and no other material has surfaced as yet….. Thus, we must begin the day searching for something about which to write. With the election so close, it might be time for a rant on politics, to drive home the need for everyone to make sure to get out there to cast their opinion, wrong-headed though it may be…. Just let me ask each of you heading to the polls to use your noggin to make you choices, not your fears or bigotry, should you be saddled with such.

Use that brain for something other than sitting on, and make the logical choice to vote for the incumbent. No President, good or bad, ever gets much done in just four years, and this one deserves more time to continue with the positive changes that he’s been able to accomplish, in spite of all the partisan opposition he has suffered due to the Republican party’s stated racist platform….. Don’t blame me, just go read what it says, and the racism is obvious…. even their own pundits are getting disgusted with it, as one of them so lucidly stated the other day…

Okay, wrong place to start ranting…. I’ll leave it for later, if that is what comes up in this morning’s dive…. I’ll quit fooling around now, and get on with the program…. Shall we Pearl?…..

Were I so tall to reach the pole,
Or grasp the ocean with my span,
I must be measured by my soul:
The mind ‘s the standard of the man.
– Isaac Watts (1674-1748) — Horae Lyricae, Book ii, False Greatness
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“Suppose that we are wise enough to learn and know and yet not wise enough to control our learning and knowledge, so that we use it to destroy ourselves?  Even if that is so, knowledge remains better than ignorance. It is better to know even if the knowledge endures only for the moment that comes before destruction than to gain eternal life at the price of a dull and swinish lack of comprehension of a universe that swirls unseen before us in all its wonder. That was the choice of Achilles, and it is mine, too.” — Isaac Asimov, The New Hugo Winners

In the intro section above, I started a rant, which mentioned the four years that the current President has had to try to accomplish his reforms. In that short rant, I mentioned the partisan opposition he has suffered at the hands of the Republican party. What Mr. Asimov states above may be considered as a large part of the reason that the Republicans have been so dead set against allowing him to make any progress. Bigotry and racism are a direct outgrowth of ignorance; this is not something disputable, or subject to debate. It is fact…. and bigotry and racism are the real reasons that these people are so set on defeating Obama. They don’t care at all about how he is doing, or whether or not his policies are good for the country or not…. they don’t even attempt to address those issues, other than to create great outcries at every little issue that comes up in the news, when it suits them to make noise about it.

The Republican party has spent four years blocking all legislation proposed by the White House. This is legislation that would have created millions of jobs, and gone a long way to repairing the damage that eight years of Bush’s unlimited spending and economic disaster caused, but, his opponents have blocked all of it, in spite of the millions of Americans who might have benefited from the bills. Their stated purpose, as outlined four years ago, right after the election in 2008, was to make Obama a one-term president, AT ANY COST, and using any means, including lying. Especially lying…. they’ve reduced that particular act to a science, and are not afraid to use it to their purpose at all. In pursuit of their ignorant, racist agenda, they have absolutely no shame…. It’s quite disgusting, actually, to those of us with more than two functioning brain cells….

“The foolish and the dead alone never change their opinions.” — James Russell Lowell

I have been noticing the people on Facebook who are posting political articles for others to read, and have noted a distinct difference in the two styles each side has shown. The liberals who support the incumbent post videos, mostly, that show the Republican candidates stating one of their asinine, dishonest attacks on the President, or an inspirational message from a supporter of the President. In addition, there have been a lot of videos of Republican candidates around the country who have bee voicing their party’s war on women lately, with these idiotic statements about rape, which, quite simply, is something to which they are not even entitled to an opinion, much less policy making powers. Any who, the liberals post this kind of stuff about half the time, along with another half that is supportive stuff that shows off the progress made by Obama, with a message of unity and hope for the future….

None of the Republican supporters I see have come out with anything at all on the “rape” issues…. no comments at all. It’s like they are in total denial, and think that if they ignore it (hmm… wonder what ignoring leads to?…. could it be…. ignorance?) it won’t be true, or will go away. I also see no ads that show Romney, or Ryan, as doing ANYTHING. Period. They have stopped talking to the public, and refuse to talk to reporters. They don’t want to make any more mistakes, as almost every time they’ve opened their mouths, it has benefited the liberals, because of the depth of stupidity shown every time. There are no admiring ads touting how wonderful a leader Mitt the Twitt would be…. There are no detailed explanations of his proposed policies, because every detailed study of those policies has shown them to be totally inadequate, lacking in any understanding of the issues involved, and in some cases, pure lies…. These were independent studies, by the way, not funded by the liberals.

No, the only things the Republicans are posting are negative attack ads on Obama, for all kinds of little BS, from the recent terrorist attack in Bhengazi, to birther nonsense (yes, it STILL gets thrown out there….), to thinly disguised references to his skin color, which just goes to show their real fear…. These people are scared to death because a BLACK man is President, and they will do literally ANYTHING to get him out of that position…. One of the most highly recognizable pundits from the Republican party recently came out to express his dismay at the outright racism and bigotry of the Republican campaign, and to acknowledge the despicable nature of the ignorance that is being displayed.

Yet, the polls (which I regard as purely fictional, and merely another attempt by the media to assert their own form of mind control….. I am of the firm opinion that publishing a poll before the election should be illegal…. let us go to the polls without any precognition…. which is how it is supposed to work, now, isn’t it?…)…. the polls say that the race is close, and that it may be decided in the electoral college, rather than at the polls themselves. Which is, to me, another opportunity for the Republicans to try to work their manipulation and voter suppression techniques to try to affect the outcome in their favor…. They did it successfully with GW Bush, twice, so it’s not like it hasn’t already been tested as a viable method of winning elections. It’s just that in this case, there is a distinct danger of the entire country falling back into the middle ages, should their cheating ways prevail again….

So, what I am suggesting, to all those out there with any shred of common sense and intelligence,  is that we remove that issue, by going to the polls in such numbers as to make their ignorance and bigotry immaterial. Let us show them that there are more of us than they think there are, and we are not going to allow them to drag us back over a hundred years, eliminating all the progress in social issues that we have struggled so hard to obtain in that time. The fate of millions of seniors, women, people of color, gays, and just about anyone who isn’t a rich white male will be seriously threatened by a Republican win in three days…. so let us remove their chances of winning, by going out to vote for Obama in record numbers everywhere, and make the electoral college  a matter of form. (Then we can start the process to get rid of the college altogether…. should’ve happened fifty years ago… it’s a relic of the past, and should stay there….)

Go vote, ffolkes, and please, get it right!…..
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Days and Nights of Eire

Wondrously comforting, a dream creeps oft into my mind
On the elven hills of Eire lives the vision I will find.
Elegant, gracious, everlastingly draped in beauty
Just payment of simple homage lives as joyous duty.

Fairies and druids walk abroad in ghostly parade
Gracing each hearth with its own welcoming shade.
Castles and heroes still live in tale and song
Proving love for the land in each heart strong.

From cold of winter into glorious young spring
Brown, and gray, to emerald green songs to sing
Soft rains always follow winter’s great tempest
As Eire dons an emerald coat from east to west.

Old and strong, connections call out in dreams
Nothing that was known remains as it seems.
Immersion in ancient runes and battle hymns
Offering sanity in place of grievous whims.

Time and place can tell a much different tale
Judgment should never be a final sale.
Yet something solid and real calls me to go see
Where dreams of loving beauty may actually be….

~~ gigoid

Whew! Finally…. Well, there you go… I hope it was worth the wait…. Actually, it may grow again; it’s okay, but feels not quite done, somehow… ah well, time will tell….
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:GIGO: /gi:’goh/ [acronym] 1. `Garbage In, Garbage Out’ — usually said in response to {luser}s who complain that a program didn’t “do the right thing” when given imperfect input or otherwise mistreated in some way.  Also commonly used to describe failures in human decision making due to faulty, incomplete, or imprecise data.  2. `Garbage In, Gospel Out’: this more recent expansion is a sardonic comment on the tendency human beings have to put excessive trust in `computerized’ data. — from The on-line Hacker Jargon File V423

Many years ago, I adopted the user name gigoid, taking it from the above definition, and adding an “id” for, of course, identification purposes; with that suffix, I am assured of human status, i.e. hominid, humanoid, etc.  I chose this acronym because it is the perfect reminder of the basic integrity that is built into all computers, i.e., they can only do what we tell them to do, and cannot lie. Thus, if our results are wrong, the error lies in our input, not in the computer; this automatically cuts in half the number of places to look for the problem. I like to think that my awareness of this principle characteristic of how computers work is what has allowed me to use computers without suffering many of the common difficulties such as crashes, freezes, and blue screens of death. Only once have I ever encountered one of those on my own computer, and that was the result of a virus my defenses missed… my fault, of course, I hadn’t updated soon enough…

Oh, I’ve encountered that famous blue screen before, when I worked as a computer tech back in the late 90′s, setting up LAN’s and office systems for H&R Block…. a significant percentage of machines were dead soon after coming out of the factory box. But, on my own computers, I am very careful never to break any of the basic rules that govern those kinds of mishaps…. and I owe it all to a wise choice of user name…. Well, it’s fun to think about it that way anyway….

So, who is gigoid? Well, if you’ve hung about this blog site for long, I’ve certainly given y’all enough of my inner workings to look at, in my rants, and in my old school pearls, as well as in my poetry, which is quite revealing, to me….. but, then, if it wasn’t, I most likely couldn’t write it…. Any who, to give the short answer to that question, I’ll post below some pearls that give insight into what I believe to be true, and how I try to live…. Like any weak human, I don’t always succeed at being as moral or ethical as I can be, but, I do try, and I do feel pangs of regret when I don’t, so cut me some slack, eh? Just kidding…. What I am is all what I am, though I’m not Popeye…. and these pearls are what I see in the mirror…..

“They are able because they think they are able.” — Virgil

“Excellence is an art won by training and habituation.  We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but we rather have those because we have acted rightly.  We are what we repeatedly do.  Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit.” — Aristotle

“An epigram often flashes light into regions where reason shines but dimly.” — E. P. Whipple

It is my firm belief that it is a mistake to hold firm beliefs. — Smart Bee

Computers can never replace human stupidity. — Smart Bee

“Do not confuse “duty” with what other people expect of you; they are utterly different. Duty is a debt you owe to yourself to fulfill obligations you have assumed voluntarily. Paying that debt can entail anything from years of patient work to instant willingness to die. Difficult it may be, but the reward is self-respect.
But there is no reward at all for doing what other people expect of you, and to do so is not merely difficult, but impossible. It is easier to deal with a footpad than it is with the leech who wants “just a few minutes of your time, please — this won’t take long.” Time is your total capital, and the minutes of your life are painfully few. If you allow yourself to fall into the vice of agreeing to such requests, they quickly snowball to the point where these parasites will use up 100 percent of your time — and squawk for more!
So learn to say No – and to be rude about it when necessary. Otherwise you will not have time to carry out your duty, or to do your own work, and certainly no time for love and happiness. The termites will nibble away your life and leave none of it for you. (This rule does not mean that you must not do a favor for a friend, or even a stranger. But let the choice be yours. Don’t do it because it is “expected” of you.) ” — Lazarus Long, from Time Enough for Love, by Robert Heinlein

“Do I look like someone who cares about what God thinks?” — Zippy the Pinhead

Well, that’s enough about me…. Hope this helps clear up any confusion, and if not, well, hey, life goes on…. all we can do is all we can do, and no more….
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Odd, indeed…. and long, too. I wasn’t sure the poem was going to make it, and it may not be all the way done, but, it’s out, and will stand as is for now…. I’m not sure about it right now, I’m too close to it to judge impartially…. so, I’ll take a chance, and let it go out as it is. I’m brave, sometimes…. but,then, what can happen, besides somebody hating it? I can handle that okay, so…. any who, enough of my rambling for one day…. I see that I have possibly gone a bit overboard in that respect today. Such is life, or as the French would say, literally, c’est la vie…. Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..


Sometimes I sits and thinks,
and sometimes
I just sits.

gigoid

Dozer

Kowabunga!

Entropy is easy; it’s Chaos that’s tough….

Ffolkes,
I’m still deep in moving mode today, at least theoretically. The help I was told I was getting from my landlord seems to be morphing into no help, so I’ve had to,  so far, do it all myself. I’ve been lucky, and careful, and haven’t hurt my back yet, but much more, and I’m pushing the odds. Hopefully, he will come through today…..

I’m finding myself completely justified in my previously stated dislike for moving. One full day of it, and I’m emotionally, and physically exhausted. I remembered the worst part…. after one has finished getting stuff out of the old house, and taken it over to the new, then the work begins. All that stuff I’ve just moved has to find a new home in the new place, and I have no idea at this point what is going where, beyond knowing whether it’s kitchen stuff, bathroom stuff, or other stuff. Plus, I’ll be moving it into a smaller total space, so it has to be ruthlessly organized, or it’s not going to fit…. Wouldn’t that be fun? Get everything over there and find out some of it has to go, because it won’t fit. Looking forward to that….. not!….

Okay, I done whining now. I’ll just finish up here with a Pearl, and get back to the drudgery to come….. Shall we Pearl?……
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“The most merciful thing in the world, I think, is the inability of the human  mind to correlate all its contents.   We live on a placid island of ignorance  in the midst of black seas of infinity, and it was not meant that we should  voyage far.  The sciences, each straining in its own direction, have hitherto harmed us little;  but some day the piecing together of dissociated knowledge will open up such terrifying vistas of reality, and of our frightful position therein, that we shall either go mad from the revelation or flee from the deadly light into the peace and safety of a new dark age.” — H.P. Lovecraft, The Call of Cthulhu

Sometimes, I think we have already arrived at this point in time….. but, if not, then we are not far away…… with this firmly in mind, please find the following, all of which lead one gently to an idea that may, or may not, make you feel better. Which, of course, is NOT the purpose…. nonetheless, the conclusion framed by these quotes is one you NEED to know……

“It has been said that man is a rational animal. All my life I have  been searching for evidence which could support this.” — Bertrand Russell

“Where ignorance is our master, there is no possibility of real peace.” — Dalai Lama

As a man can drink water from any side of a full tank, so the skilled theologian (politician’s too!) can wrest from any scripture that which will serve his purpose. — Bhagavad Gita

“Discourse on virtue and they pass by in droves. Whistle and dance the shimmy, and you’ve got an audience.” — Diogenes

“Anyone who isn’t confused doesn’t really know what’s going on.” — Edward R. Murrow

“The only real failure in life is the failure to try.” — Smart Bee
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Buddha in Glory

Center of all centers, core of cores,
almond self-enclosed, and growing sweet–
all this universe, to the furthest stars
all beyond them, is your flesh, your fruit.

Now you feel how nothing clings to you;
your vast shell reaches into endless space,
and there the rich, thick fluids rise and flow.
Illuminated in your infinite peace,

a billion stars go spinning through the night,
blazing high above your head.
But in you is the presence that
will be, when all the stars are dead.

Rainer Maria Rilke

Rilke is a poet fairly new to me; I first read one of his pieces a couple of years ago. I like most of what I’ve read; it seems very accessible, very personal, and quite insightful in places…. all of which make him a good poet, in my mind….. Enjoy!
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[A small difference of opinion on the U.S. Supreme Court in 'Texas v. Johnson' 491 U.S. 397 (1989)

"If there is a bedrock principle underlying the First Amendment, it is that the Government may not prohibit the expression of an idea simply because society finds the idea itself offensive or disagreeable." -- Justice William J. Brennan, writing for the majority

"Surely one of the purposes of a democratic society is to legislate against conduct that is regarded as evil and profoundly offensive to the majority of people; whether it be murder, embezzlement, pollution or flag burning." -- Chief Justice William Rehnquist, dissenting

Yeah, that's a bit of a difference in those positions, for sure. The second one, by Justice Rehnquist, is somewhat disturbing, in that it attempts to justify the Mrs. Grundys of the world, and gives the sense that the majority does not have to accommodate any minority. It is just another way of trying to legislate morality, a practice that has proven, through thousands of years of history, to be a futile pastime. Laws, and the threat of punishment for breaking them, have NEVER been effective in getting folks to act right, and they never will.

The dichotomy described by these two opinions on the Court reflects pretty well how society is breaking down in the upcoming election. The Democrats are trying to spend another four years cleaning up the mess left by the last Republican president, possibly the worst president we've ever had, in terms of both foreign policy and economics.

The incumbent president, Barack Obama, has spent four years trying to get us out of two wars, and trying to return some of the social aid for the poor and vulnerable, along with having to deal with economic policies from his predecessor that put a stranglehold on the middle class. He's done fairly well, considering the Republican party has thrown up every obstacle they could to keep him from doing anything at all. They have not even come close to fitting the label of "loyal opposition" but have insisted on turning the issues into a social battleground at every turn.

The election in November will, I hope, sustain my image of my country's basic intelligence. I am hoping that all the apathetic middle class voters who generally don't vote, due to their feeling that it doesn't matter who is elected, will pull their heads out of the sand (or their ass, wherever it resides when they are hiding from reality....) and come out and vote the liberal ticket.....

The Republican ticket wants to turn back the clock, and go back to giving all the perks and tax breaks to the rich, while reducing the services that are now available to seniors and the poor. This doesn't even mention the all-out war they've declared on women's rights regarding healthcare, and their right to vote. If they have their way, the only thing they want a woman to be is a brainwashed, barefoot, baby-making machine.

There are other issues. of course, but these are the main ones I see as being decided by the two separate poles of voters, and I would really like to see a good turnout, to let the conservative idiots see just how much of a minority they are. If they somehow manipulate matters so that the Romney/Ryan two headed beast is elected, they will work to consolidate and strengthen their hold over the rest of us, destroying the middle class, until all that is left is the 1% rich, powerful beloved ruling class, and the 99% poor, vulnerable, and disenfranchised in this country.

If that happens, there is no telling what may occur next..... We could easily see a period of assassinations, coups, and civil skirmishes, as the true patriots in this country are liable to take up arms against such deep encroachment on their rights. I know I am tempted to buy myself a rifle, and a scope, and go hunting..... and I wouldn't be hunting squirrels, let me assure you...... Oh, and  forget trying to make me believe that violence never solves anything, because that is just delusional.... ask Alexander the Great, or Ghengis Khan whether violence worked for them....

Stay alert ffolkes, there are strange times ahead..... things are going to get interesting, in every sense of the word.....
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Not a very uplifting Pearl, needless to say. I'm glad I put the poem re: Buddha in the middle.... kind of lessens the sting of the last political pearl. I guess it all reflects my own state, one of, shall we say, less than complete satisfaction with the world at large..... SIGH..... such is life..... Wish me luck getting a Pearl out tomorrow; it may not happen, if all does not go well today...... Y'all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you.....

--
Sometimes I sits and thinks,
and sometimes
I just sits.

gigoid

Dozer

Kowabunga!

Hastening Armageddon for pennies a day….

Ffolkes,
With a clear eye, and a somewhat less than clear conscience, I take up the gauntlet once more, seeking new and innovative ways to befuddle the reading audience. Well, either befuddle, or titillate, take your pick; both are on sale today…..

That’s right, we’re having a sale. I have all this excess verbiage laying around, and I figured, “Hey, maybe somebody can use some of this stuff!”  Then I thought to myself, “Hey, maybe I can fool, er, talk them into paying for it! It’s worth a shot, right?”  So, I’ve taken some time to organize and label a bunch of stuff, and put prices on them.

Please, during your visit today, please take a moment to to look through the catalog on the table over there, and see if there isn’t a metaphor, or a witty response, or a partial poem, or a joke, or maybe even, gasp, an original idea, that you can use in your work…. all priced very reasonably….  Plus, if you buy your needed accessories to crime here, there is no guilt factor, so you can save the money you would have spent on plagiarism insurance. Every word will be shipped via email, so that cost is also zero…. How can you lose?

The bonus factor for me is a couple bucks extra to go into the old refrigerator….. No, I don’t mean I put my money in the fridge; I mean I’ll buy food, and put it in there….. although, come to think of it, I do know a lot of folks who think hiding money in the fridge is one NOBODY will ever think of…. I never bother to tell them it is the first place any experienced cop, guard, technician, or junkie will search in their quest for illegal substances or hidden treasures, mainly because EVERYBODY thinks that nobody else knows this…. another fine example of the quality of most folk’s thinking processes….

That’s probably enough silliness for one morning, or at least for intentional silliness. It starts to annoy even me after a bit…. What say we dive in and start the morning Pearl?….. Keeping in mind, of course, the morning words of wisdom….

PARANOIA: A healthy understanding of the way the universe works. — Smart Bee
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ART, n.  This word has no definition.  Its origin is related as follows by the ingenious Father Gassalasca Jape, S.J.

One day a wag — what would the wretch be at? –
Shifted a letter of the cipher RAT,
And said it was a god’s name!  Straight arose
Fantastic priests and postulates (with shows,
And mysteries, and mummeries, and hymns,
And disputations dire that lamed their limbs)
To serve his temple and maintain the fires,
Expound the law, manipulate the wires.
Amazed, the populace that rites attend,
Believe whate’er they cannot comprehend,
And, only edified to learn that two
Half-hairs joined so and so (as Art can do)
Have sweeter values and a grace more fit
Than Nature’s hairs that never have been split,
Bring cakes and wines for sacrificial feasts,
And sell their garments to support the priests.

– Ambrose Bierce, “The Devil’s Dictionary”

It seems that Mr. Bierce’s talent was not limited to merely prose with a sharp point, but displayed just as precisely, and pointedly, as poetry. Quite excellent poetry too, with couplets all a-rhyme, scansion dancing around the pole made of irony, with streamers of wit….. I’m impressed, more and more, each time I read from the Dictionary….

I guess I wasn’t quite done with being Silly….
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“Ignore the man behind the screen.” — The All Seeing, All Powerful, Wonderful Wizard of Oz

As the time passes and we draw ever nearer to the election this year, this becomes increasingly relevant. It is important to remember that ALL the political candidates are guilty of using the art of prestidigitation in their communications with the public. Of course, Mitt the Twitt and the GOP are showing particularly egregious new heights to which they are willing to take the art; they have paraded a series of lies before the public that are not even hidden lies. They don’t seem to care; they just deny, ignore, and issue their next false accusation or made up statistics….

‘Shit Happens’ according to… Denialism:      What shit? — Smart Bee

The Democrats aren’t completely free of this syndrome, either, and if you believe they are, then you have entered the Twilight Zone, and may have trouble finding your way back to the real world. I admire Obama, much the same way I did Carter; they are both basically decent men trying to do an impossible job, while constantly having to contend with an entire segment of those who are supposed to support him as loyal opposition, who, instead, are attempting to thwart his every reform, simply for the sake of divisiveness. In the fight to get ANYTHING done, the incumbents have had to resort to chicanery of their own. I figure they, at least, feel a bit of guilt about it, whereas I can see no such reaction from Mitt or any of the GOP spokesbozos…. They just deny and ignore any such suggestions of wrong-doing….

Let’s consider Mitt the Twitt for a moment. Here is a man who admits to being rich as Croesus, yet finds it necessary to hide at least half of his real worth, as if it would tarnish his image of someone who can relate to the common man. I think the common man, to Mitt, is someone who only has $50,000 worth of investments, to go along with the house they own, their three cars, and the vacation home in Maine. In contrast to EVERY OTHER candidate’s policy of publishing their taxes, he continues to refuse to release any returns beyond the last one; there are inconsistencies and red flag items of interest to the public in that one, too, but he refuses to discuss any of it…

This is the same man who tied his dog to a kennel on the roof of a car, and went off on vacation, without ever thinking of how terrified the dog might be, barreling along at 80 mph, with the wind blowing straight through the kennel. He laughs about it, and turns questions about it to other subjects, refusing to even comment on it. This is the same man who, when asked about a serious incident of bullying and gay bashing during his last year in high school, shrugged it off as “youthful pranks and high spirits”…..

This is the same man who…. well, never mind. I could go on most of the day, and not get to all the little incidents from just the last few months that indicate the Twitt’s complete disregard for the majority of Americans, and show clearly how entrenched he is in the 1%, and how committed he is to solidifying the stranglehold that the banks and corporations have on the rest of American society. His total focus is on the agenda of the rich, to the detriment of the poor, and I am totally astounded at just how many IDIOTS are out there in this country supporting him, in the mistaken belief that he gives a shit about them….

No politician is acting in the best interests of the people they govern. None of them. But people continue to act as if they do, and it is driving me crazy! Normal, intelligent people are backing this asshole, thinking that he isn’t going to screw them over. It is incomprehensible to me how people can blind themselves to the obvious so completely that they would fall for this shit….  I will say it one more time, and I hope they can understand it….

And then shall many be offended,… — Matthew 24:10

You are being lied to, by every politician who is currently seeking office, and by every one currently in office. If you don’t see that, if you don’t believe that, then you are deliberately fucking yourself in the place it will most hurt, and apparently, enjoying it…. The man, the party, and 99% of everyone you see on TV is LYING TO YOU!!!!! They are doing so every day, every hour, every minute, and you are accepting it like you are a starving sheep and what they are saying is manna from heaven.

WAKE UP!…..  I’m stopping here, my blood pressure is spiking, and I’m starting to type in all caps to show I’m shouting, rather than just as contextual importance. That’s how worked up I get when I think of how deliberately stupid people can be…. I don’t so much mind the stupid part, but the fact that they have to CHOOSE to not see what is right in front of their face just sets me off…. So much indignation, righteous or not, is giving me indigestion….. stay alert, ffolkes, the politicians are coming, and they’re dangerous when unregulated….
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Certain passages in several laws have always defied interpretation and the most inexplicable must be a matter of opinion. A judge of the Court of Session of Scotland has sent the editors of this book his candidate which reads, “In the Nuts (unground), (other than ground nuts) Order, the expression nuts shall have reference to such nuts, other than ground nuts, as would but for this amending Order not qualify as nuts (unground)(other than ground nuts) by reason of their being nuts (unground).” — from the Guinness Book of World Records, 1973

I’m almost speechless. (I know, you’ll believe it when you see it…. I did say ‘almost’…. that’s something…) It’s absolutely beautiful! Perfectly priceless absolute nonsense, dressed only in legal briefs…. It is so impenetrable, I can’t tell if it is the law itself, or the judge’s written opinion on the law, or a passage from Nightmare on Elm Street! Which I’ve never seen, by the way….

How’s that for tangential? Any who, this was included today as a finishing touch to my Twitt-rant above. This goes to show exactly how the political hacks we are burdened with today work their verbal magic, to distract us from looking at things they don’t want us to see. Bureaucratese is what I’ve heard it called, a language, and skill set, that society has had practiced on them since the days of ancient Greece.

When a document such as the one above reaches a certain level of impenetrability, the majority of people alive will either fall asleep halfway through reading it, or totally ignore it after reading the first 11 words or so. It’s a classic piece of distraction, and is probably used in courses for political science majors in college, especially in law schools, as an example of how to carry off the trick.

To me, what this law indicates is that one, or more, of the people involved in writing the law have a monetary interest in being able to obfuscate the definition of “Nuts”, in order for them to achieve some financial reward owing to the indicated distinctions in that definition. In other words, a loophole or three is created, so the “Nut” vendors can make more money, charging more for each kind of Nut than could be accomplished without the legislation.

It’s similar to the law in this country that was pushed through the Federal Courts back in the mid-1800′s, when a corrupt Federal judge awarded “personhood” to corporations, after being paid handsomely by those corporations for his verdict…. Same, same, alla same…. Evil is loose in the world….

– Bother! said Pooh, as he had another plate of Piglet sausage. — Smart Bee (Remember Mitt the Twitt at the NAACP?…..As Jueseppi, the Obabmacrat says, “he was jivin’, shuckin’ and jivin”….. with a mouth full of sausage….)

I suppose all I’m trying to say here is, once again….. Wake up ffolkes…. the beloved ruling class, the priestly hierarchies, and the corporate “persons” in the shape of banks and multinational corporations, are continue to hide from all of us the actual business they are pursuing, which has everything to do with benefiting them, nothing to do with benefiting the public; it’s all about screwing everyone else as much as they will allow…. I don’t know about y’all, but I’m about done with allowing ANY of it….

“I’m not tense, just terribly alert.” — Smart Bee

So, please…. DON’T ignore the man behind the screen…. he’s the one who is killing us all….
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I’ll take it…. I don’t know about y’all, but I feel better for having gotten that out….. sorry if any of it got on your clothing. I don’t think any of it is toxic…. maybe a bit vitriolic, but vitriol won’t actually harm anything, unless it applies to the reader as well as the subject matter…. Was that obscure enough?… So be it. Mr. Crusher, make it so….

Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..


Sometimes I sits and thinks,
and sometimes
I just sits.

gigoid

Dozer

Kowabunga!

Omelets don’t enjoy public exposure….

Ffolkes,
For the last 5 weeks or so, I have been unable to overcome the WordPress technical glitches that are plaguing my system. I have to perform a workaround to sign in. If I try to access another WP site while logged in, I either get put into an infinite loop that refuses to even load the page, or I get logged off, and can’t sign back in on the other site, because I’m logged in on mine. Being a geeky sort, I’ve figured out how to keep publishing, using three separate techniques to get around the glitch, whatever it is.

Unfortunately, this glitch also means I have been totally unable to access any of the sites of all the people I follow, other than once or twice. I can get there, but I have to log out, find the site using Google, then sign back in to comment, so it is very time-consuming, making it impractical for me, as I just can’t sit that long. Just writing my own blog I have to take breaks every 10-15 minutes, and trying to follow and read the 100+ blogs I want to read is just too much.
    As a result, the traffic on my site has also gone down, because it is true what they tell you in those blog tutorials; the success of any blog depends on the blogger visiting other sites, and maintaining that community contact. Since I can’t get to other sites, the only folks that I can see that come to my site are the ones who either hit the Like button, or comment (all of which I answer….); of the 150 people who signed up to follow my blog, only about 20-30 of them seem to be regulars, as my Likes and comments are still less than double digits (i.e., less than 10).

Now, this in itself is not troublesome for me, as I don’t write just to gather followers. I write for self-therapy, and to create discussion. If it eventually leads to a lot of readers, that would be great, but it’s not what I’m trying for. I’d rather have a smaller number of regular readers who comment, or at least read what I have to say because they like the content.

But it does bother me that I cannot read the blogs I follow. I follow them because I like what the people there write, or post, or create (some are VERY creative….) and I miss the dialogue I usually have with them, as I am in inveterate commenter when I read a blog. I enjoy it when folks comment, as it shows me that I’ve written something that stimulated someone else’s mind; I comment because what they wrote stimulated mine, and I want them to know it….. but now I can’t, and it’s driving me bat-shit crazy.

I’ve hesitated to contact WP about the glitch, as the last time I tried to get help, it took weeks, and was very frustrating; it actually made my PTSD worse, so I’m a little reluctant to go through that again. But now, I’m going to HAVE to ask for help, because the glitch is either spreading, or morphing, or something; I’ve had to use two workarounds just to sign in today. It’s too much, and I have to do something. The annoyance factor has grown to exceed my reluctance, so I’ll contact them today to see if I can get it fixed…..

To all those ffolkes who stop by every day, THANK YOU…. I’m glad you enjoy the Pearls, and you can be assured they will continue. Thanks also to those who stop in at least weekly  (I know of at least 5 who do so, as they “Like” or comment on four or five every time they come by, catching up, as it were…), or even just occasionally. I do appreciate it. Thanks especially to those who comment regularly, or even sporadically; I love to dialogue. And to all those who just stop in occasionally, thank you for that, and I hope what I write continues to draw you back, even if only occasionally.

To all the folks I follow…. please be patient. I’ll work with WP to get this fixed, and will spend a couple of days catching up to all of them, as best I may. I’m just hoping the effort to identify and fix the glitch doesn’t turn into another soap opera…. time will tell, as always…..

Now that I have thoroughly bored all of you to tears, I think it’s time to Pearl. Shall we?…..
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“A generation which ignores history has no past and no future.” –  Robert Heinlein, The Notebooks of Lazarus Long

This statement, I believe, is one that almost any historian would agree with, as it has been said at different times in different words for as long as humanity has had a history. It is a deduction that has been proven time after time since the beginning of civilization; there is no argument against it that hasn’t been answered, so it is generally held to have the weight of a natural law…. This is a frightening thought when applied in relation to modern America…..

“In our society, the Republicans set out to prove that the Democrats can not be trusted to run the government. And the Democrats set out to prove that the Republicans can not be trusted to run our government. The real problem here is that both the Democrats and the Republicans have come up with something which is absolutely true and perfectly correct. This means that the people get to pull some sort of horrible trick on themselves and live with their choice for four years.” — Smart Bee

I wish this had come with attribution, so I’d know who to congratulate for a very succinct, accurate statement of the current State of the Union. Combining the common sense of this statement with the proven accuracy of the first quote, we arrive at the conclusion that our society has not only ignored the past, but no longer cares at all about the future.

Every four years, the folks who make up the beloved ruling class start spouting off about all the stuff they think the sitting administration has done wrong, sending out endless distractions and lies that are designed to keep the public’s attention off what they are really up to. In doing so, they are not only distracting people away from history, but teaching them to ignore it.

“And it shall come to pass that idiots shall roam the earth, and morons shall rule the masses.” — Smart Bee

In this current fiasco leading up to November’s election of a new POTUS, or re-election of the old, the level of distraction and outright lying has reached new heights. The GOP, in its efforts to stop the reforms being instituted by the sitting POTUS, have been gathering money at unprecedented rates, all to finance the political ads that will determine the tenor of the campaign.

The Political Action Groups that support the GOP platform, which were formed to get around the campaign contribution reforms, have generated literally hundreds of millions of dollars to pay for advertisements for Mitt the Twitt (designed to convince the public that he actually does give a shit about the common man) and against Barack Obama (designed to picture him as the spawn of Satan).

SATAN, n.  One of the Creator’s lamentable mistakes, repented in sackcloth and axes.  Being instated as an archangel, Satan made himself multifariously objectionable and was finally expelled from Heaven.  Halfway in his descent he paused, bent his head in thought a moment and at last went back.  “There is one favor that I should like to ask,” said he.   “Name it.”   “Man, I understand, is about to be created.  He will need laws.”  “What, wretch! you his appointed adversary, charged from the dawn of eternity with hatred of his soul — you ask for the right to make his laws?”   “Pardon; what I have to ask is that he be permitted to make them himself.” It was so ordered. — Ambrose Bierce, “The Devil’s Dictionary”

It is a constant amazement to me how people, whom I normally consider to be well-grounded, can fall for the nonsense these political hacks are putting out. Especially those who are supporting the Twitt; it is absolutely astounding to me that ANYONE would believe anything that comes out of his mouth, as he flips from one concept to another, claiming to support, or oppose those concepts according to what he believes the crowd wants to hear. There are too many documented instances of this for them to deny it, so they don’t. They just ignore it, and THE MEDIA LETS THEM DO IT!

I’m really sick of it all; it is distasteful to my persona to hear this much lying, and not have it condemned. Mitt lies, Barack lies, Congress lies, and the rest of their compatriots are all lying as well. And the voting public, who ignores history, goes out and votes, not knowing, or seemingly caring, that there are NO candidates who are not lying.  I am a member of that number, though I do know I’m being lied to. But, if I don’t vote, then I’m throwing in the towel without even throwing a punch, and have no right to complain. I may have to choose between the lesser of two evils, but at least I have a choice.

“Constantly choosing the lesser of two evils is still choosing evil.” — Jerry Garcia (1942-1995), Musician, the Grateful Dead

The whole election scenario is pretty discouraging, for anyone with a modicum of common sense. It’s hard to watch society shoot itself in the foot every four years, and harder still to live with the lack of viable choices. Especially when I know that natural law, i.e., Mother Nature, will eventually assert itself, and our species will join the dodo and the T-Rex on the list of species that just didn’t have what it takes to make it in this universe. SIGH….. it’s too bad. Our species shows such promise, but then turns around and nullifies any progress with paroxysms of mass stupidity…. and then pats itself on the back for good measure.

We’re all idiots……

“Lord, grant me the serenity to accept the things that I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to hide the bodies of those people I had to kill because they pissed me off.” — Smart Bee
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“Some say that my teaching is nonsense. Others call it lofty but impractical. But to those who have looked inside themselves, this nonsense makes perfect sense. And to those who put it into practice, this loftiness has roots that go deep. I have just three things to teach: simplicity, patience, compassion. These three are your greatest treasures. Simple in actions and in thoughts, you return to the source of being. Patient with both friends and enemies, you accord with the way things are. Compassionate toward yourself, you reconcile all beings in the world.” — Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching

My morning rant above got a bit out of hand, and I had a hard time keeping it as short as it is. So, in order to provide some contrast, I will not say much here. This doesn’t need much help anyway; it’s about as clear as it can be. Sure, I could expand on it, give examples, provide an allegorical tale or two, but it wouldn’t improve it. So, I’ll leave it be, and just ask you to roll it around in your head for a while. It will give you all there is to give…. which is more than is apparent, as with any deep truth….. If you wish, you can just tell yourself I’m being compassionate, by not exposing you to further railings from this quarter….
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All Watched Over by Machines of Loving Grace

I like to think (and
the sooner the better!)
of a cybernetic meadow
where mammals and computers
live together in mutually
programming harmony
like pure water
touching clear sky.

I like to think
(right now please!)
of a cybernetic forest
filled with pines and electronics
where deer stroll peacefully
past computers
as if they were flowers
with spinning blossoms.

I like to think
(it has to be!)
of a cybernetic ecology
where we are free of our labors
and joined back to nature,
returned to our mammal
brothers and sisters,
and all watched over
by machines of loving grace.

Richard Brautigan, 1967

I may have used this a couple months ago, but it is possibly my favorite poem of all time, period, so I’m putting it in again…. I think you can handle it….. It’s one of my personal images of Heaven, or as we agnostics are fond of calling it, Utopia…. Or, as Oscar said….

“A map of the world that has no Utopia is not worth considering.” — Oscar Wilde
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Okay…. I feel pretty lucky. Not yet 0800, and I’ve got this whipped. It’s a bit windy, but it flies. Or it will, as soon as I get it sent out…. Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you….


Sometimes I sits and thinks,
and sometimes
I just sits.

gigoid

Dozer

Kowabunga!

Delving into unusual matters of import….

Ffolkes,
Composing these Pearls every day has become the central stanchion on which the rest of my day is built. No matter what time I now arise, sometime between 5 AM and 9 AM, the process defines the morning’s activities, with very little else happening until it is done. Only coffee, breaks from sitting, and restroom urges are part of the routine; no other activities are engaged in prior to publication of the morning’s effort. I’ve found this to be the best way to ensure that it happens each and every day, which has my goal for this blog since its inception on August 11 of 2011.

Unfortunately, this also means that I’m spending a lot of time sitting at the computer, and very little time out exercising my mind, or body, in the real world. Of course, as a retiree, my need to relate to the real world is diminished, to be sure; I have the choice as to whether or not I wish to go out and mingle, or stay home and polish my curmudgeon trophies. It’s nice having the choice for a change; for most of my life, the real world pretty much dictated my activities according to the needs of my family, or job, or something else other than my personal choice. I don’t think that is unusual, and that’s a bit sad, isn’t it?….

But, now that I can choose, I’ve chosen to “hermit up” a lot. This has a lot to do with the fact that living on the poverty line doesn’t allow much extra cash for entertainment purposes, and most activities that have to do with other folks involve at least a minimum of disposable income, in order to engage in going out to eat, or have a cocktail, or go to a ball game, etc. Very few things these days are free, and if they are, it takes some money to get to where they are… such as the beach. A lack of funds is a serious handicap to a player, for sure, not that I ever was one, but, hey, a guy can dream, right?

For now, though, until my income has settled at last into what I should have been making for the last two years, I am pursuing a life of “quiet desperation”, and generally doing so alone….. except for the wonderful friends I have found here on the internet, at WordPress. The interactions I am fortunate to have with the other authors here have been uniformly positive. People here show each other support, and compassion, and kindness, in such a free and easy manner that the Dalai Lama would be proud, indeed. It makes up a lot for the lack of face to face engagement that I lack in my life; the ffolkes I’ve met here are people I am proud to have as friends, and have helped me get through some pretty hard times lately, just by being there….

So, I write…. for me, for them, and for my kids, and grandkid (so far just one). I write to express the “stuff” inside me that has been storing up over the last 50 or so years, waiting for me to get done with the things I needed to do to take care of the family, until I could begin the journey toward becoming a writer, my lifelong dream. It’s kind of destiny-like, actually; books, and literature, have been the backbone of my life, and producing them seems like a logical outcome for my nature. So I am polishing my skills as a writer here on WordPress, ever hopeful that some editor will drop in one day, take a look at what I’ve written, and ask me to start writing for a larger audience, for pay…..

Having thus spent five hefty paragraphs discussing the very thing I’m doing, (good writing practice technique, don’t y’know?), I will cease this assault on your sensibilities, and go now in search of pearls with which to populate this page….. care to join me?  Let’s Pearl….
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Practice Acts of Random Kindness and Senseless Beauty. — Hippie Philosophy, circa 1968

“It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has exceeded our humanity. — Albert Einstein (1879-1955)

Taken together, these two statements offer a possible treatment for what ails the world today. Albert’s words, spoken not long after he had helped to create the hydrogen atomic bomb, are clearly true. We, as a species, continue to display the same vicious, insensitive, violent nature that enabled us to struggle our way to the top of the food chain; the difference now is that we have the power to completely destroy an entire planet, should we give vent to that nature in our conflicts with one another….

Thus, the first statement, made common during the Peaceful Revolution in the Sixties, can be seen as a possible antidote to that nature, and to the danger it implies for mankind. It has been said, and truthfully, that the next evolutionary change that our species needs to make to survive is a change of the mind, of spiritual strength. Mankind needs to put aside our species’ natural response to conflict, which is generally to meet such tests with violence. Now that our ability to destroy ourselves is complete, we cannot afford to allow that part of our nature dictate our actions; that would be suicidal, for sure.

“The best portion of a good man’s life is his little, nameless, unremembered acts of kindness and love.” — William Wordsworth

Instead, each of us needs to learn to acknowledge in us the connection we have to each other, to celebrate that connection, instead of trying to sever it. The world, and people, respond to kindness, and to beauty; that, too, is part of our nature, and may be our salvation. as well. We all need to help each other to develop responses to stress that act from a basis of compassion, that try to promote beauty in the world.

Change within ourselves is the only real, lasting effect we can have on Reality, and with the help of each other, I believe it is possible to effect the changes to the human spirit that are so obviously necessary if we are to survive…. If we all practice Acts of Random Kindness, and Senseless Beauty, then we may live to see another millennium…. if not, we’ll be fortunate to see the end of this century…..

“And if the word integration means anything, this is what it means: that we, with love, shall force our brothers to see themselves as they are, to cease fleeing from reality and begin to change it.” — James Baldwin, The Fire Next Time
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An American Fascist seeking power would not proclaim that he is a fascist.  Fascism always camouflages its plans and purposes. … Any fascist attempt made to gain power in America would not use the exact Hitler pattern.  It would work under the guise of “super-patriotism” and “super-Americanism”.  Fascist leaders are neither stupid nor naive. They know that they must hand out a line that “sells”.   Huey Long is said to have remarked that if Fascism came to America it would be on a program of “Americanism”. — U. S. Army (1945)

Interesting, no? To discover that the US Army was aware of this is not as surprising, or as disappointing, to me as the fact that no one listened. If one is to go by the description of fascism presented here, then it becomes clear that we have allowed this to happen, right here in the good ol’ USA…. I offer as proof of this assertion the latest batch of crap that has dribbled out of the Republican camp in the last couple of days. Mitt Romney spent some time to outline some of his ideas on foreign policy changes he would seek if he is elected.

I have yet to read the article for details of those policies, as I admit to a certain amount of trepidation, regarding just how crazy they may be. It was enough for me to see the headline of the article…. “Disturbing foreign policy changes outlined…”  If the FIRST take by the media on these ideas prompts the word “Disturbing” in the title, then they MUST be pretty outrageous, and I am sure they will become the subject of an upcoming rant, once I’ve read them through….

For now, I will merely point out that Mitt’s entire program is based on the words used above in the educational treatise from the Army. From the beginning of his campaign, Romney has painted himself as a “PATRIOT”, wrapping himself in the flag, depending on that to deflect any criticisms aimed at his sincerity. He has voiced completely ILLEGAL ideas of things he would change, ideas that fed into the fears of whatever particular fringe group to which he was speaking, not even bothering to hide the fact that what he proposed was not only against the law, but was in direct contradiction to what he had told another group the day before. More than one instance of this was reported in the news; I didn’t make it up. For goodness’ sake, the man has seriously proposed a law to make it illegal for a woman to get pregnant without being married! Pure Muslim Sharia Law, from the mouth of a Christian bigot…

“Can you say “Pervert?” I thought you could.” – Smart Bee

As I’ve noted, I’m not altogether certain that the current administration is overly concerned with what is in my best interests. They, too, are politicians, and sought the jobs they are holding, which, in my mind, classifies them as insane right from the get-go. But, what I’ve observed during this Democratic administration has been much less destructive toward me and the general public than ANY of the policies that Mitt has voiced.

He has made it perfectly clear in his speeches and programs that, if one is not white, Christian, rich, and bigoted, then he isn’t interested in doing anything but oppressing you, and making himself and his cronies more wealthy, and more powerful. THAT is his underlying goal, not any patriotic wish to make things better for the average American. He couldn’t describe an average American if one was standing in front of him, spitting in his face….
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An Extempore

When they were come into Faery’s Court
They rang — no one at home — all gone to sport
And dance and kiss and love as faerys do
For Faries be as human lovers true –
Amid the woods they were so lone and wild
Where even the Robin feels himself exil’d
And where the very books as if affraid
Hurry along to some less magic shade.
‘No one at home’! the fretful princess cry’d
‘And all for nothing such a dre[a]ry ride
And all for nothing my new diamond cross
No one to see my persian feathers toss
No one to see my Ape, my Dwarf, my Fool
Or how I pace my Otaheitan mule.
Ape, Dwarf and Fool why stand you gaping there
Burst the door open, quick — or I declare
I’ll switch you soundly and in pieces tear.’
The Dwarf began to tremble and the Ape
Star’d at the Fool, the Fool was all agape
The Princess grasp’d her switch but just in time
The Dwarf with piteous face began to rhyme.
‘O mighty Princess did you ne’er hear tell
What your poor servants know but too too well
Know you the three great crimes in faery land
The first alas! poor Dwarf I understand
I made a whipstock of a faery’s wand
The next is snoring in their company
The next the last the direst of the three
Is making free when they are not at home.
I was a Prince — a baby prince — my doom
You see, I made a whipstock of a wand
My top has henceforth slept in faery land.
He was a Prince the Fool, a grown up Prince
But he has never been a King’s son since
He fell a snoring at a faery Ball
Your poor Ape was a Prince and he poor thing
But ape — so pray your highness stay awhile
‘Tis sooth indeed we know it to our sorrow –
Persist and you may be an ape tomorrow –
While the Dwarf spake the Princess all for spite
Peal’d the brown hazel twig to lilly white
Clench’d her small teeth, and held her lips apart
Try’d to look unconcerned with beating heart.
They saw her highness had made up her mind
And quaver’d like the reeds before the wind
And they had had it, but O happy chance
The Ape for very fear began to dance
And grin’d as all his uglyness did ache–
She staid her vixen fingers for his sake
He was so very ugly: then she took
Her pocket mirror and began to look
First at herself and [then] at him and then
She smil’d at her own beauteous face again.
Yet for all this — for all her pretty face
She took it in her head to see the place.
Women gain little from experience
Either in Lovers, husbands or expense.
The more their beauty the more fortune too
Beauty before the wide world never knew.
So each fair reasons — tho’ it oft miscarries.
She thought her pretty face would please the fa[e]ries.
‘My darling Ape I wont whip you today
Give me the Picklock sirrah and go play.’
They all three wept but counsel was as vain
As crying cup biddy to drops of rain.
Yet lingeringly did the sad Ape forth draw
The Picklock from the Pocket in his Jaw.
The Princess took it and dismounting straight
Trip’d in blue silver’d slippers to the gate
And touch’d the wards, the Door full courteously
Opened — she enter’d with her servants three.
Again it clos’d and there was nothing seen
But the Mule grasing on the herbage green.
End of Canto xii.

Canto the xiii.
The Mule no sooner saw himself alone
Than he prick’d up his Ears — and said ‘well done!
At least unhappy Prince I may be free –
No more a Princess shall side saddle me
O King of Othaiete — tho’ a Mule
‘Aye every inch a King’ — tho’ ‘Fortune’s fool.’
Well done — for by what Mr. Dwarfy said
I would not give a sixpence for her head.’
Even as he spake he trotted in high glee
To the knotty side of an old Pollard tree
And rub’d his sides against the mossed bark
Till his Girths burst and left him naked stark
Except his Bridle — how get rid of that
Buckled and tied with many a twist and plait.
At last it struck him to pretend to sleep
And then the thievish Monkies down would creep
And filch the unpleasant trammels quite away.
No sooner thought of than adown he lay
Sham’d a good snore — the Monkey-men descended
And whom they thought to injure they befriended.
They hung his Bridle on a topmost bough
And of[f] he went run, trot, or anyhow–

John Keats

This is kind of long, but while reading it through this morning, I was struck by its dream-like quality. The act of reading it seemed to put me in a trance-like state, and the characters in the poem took on the faces in the news. It all made sense, too, at the time. Maybe it’s something in my coffee, or some old hippie mind tricks arising out of my sub-conscious memory…. or maybe I’m just strange.

No matter, the poem, long as it is, is the beauty break my head needed to finish the morning’s effort, so, deal with it….  :-)  And enjoy the trip through Keats’ dream…. It’s kind of fun to put the faces of Romney, Barack, Newt, Rush, and all the others who inhabit the front pages, on the characters in the poem, at some elegant non-partisan ball. ….  “And off I went run, or anyhow….”
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Somewhat late, but not a bad effort, all in all. As is often the case, whether it will do or not is a moot point; it’s done, and it’s now going to be published, before I have any second thoughts about it…. Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you….

Sometimes I sits and thinks,
and sometimes
I just sits.

gigoid

Dozer

Kowabunga!

Layered in pugnacious pyjamas….

Ffolkes,
I’m beginning to think that my habit of writing an average of 1500 words every morning is depleting my store of inspiration; if not, it is at least getting weary, and hiding from me more often. I can’t really blame it, as I’ve asked it to perform miracles almost every day, turning pearls, and what is in my head, into something worth putting down on paper (note: that phrase is rapidly losing all meaning, as computers become more ubiquitous….). That’s a lot of miracles in just about 300 days.

“This writing business. Pencils and whatnot. Overrated, if you ask me.” — Winnie the Pooh

But, having set myself the goal of posting a Pearl every day (set long ago, and too late now to worry about changing…), I feel duty-bound to make the best effort I can to meet that goal. So, I carry on, in spite of the increasing difficulty. I suppose it has to do with how writing is not for the weak-minded, or for those with no staying power to their will. Since I’m now not a chef, or a psych tech, or an executive assistant, writing is what I do, so I’ve left myself with very little choice but to keep on keepin’ on, as Jerry and the boys would have said….

I see my life go drifting like a river
From change to change; I have been many things -
A green drop in the surge, a gleam of light
Upon a sword, a fir tree on a hill,
An old slave grinding at a heavy quern,
A king sitting upon a chair of gold -
And all these things were wonderful and great;
But now I have grown nothing, knowing all.
Ah! Druid, Druid, how great webs of sorrow
Lay hidden in that small slate-coloured thing!
– William Butler Yeats, “Fergus and the Druid”

What does that mean for this process? Well, nothing really…. but it got me two more paragraphs of semi-literate, if relatively meaningless discussion of a personal problem, and a great pearl from Yeats, and that ain’t nothing…. so, we’ll just use that as a very, very loose segue into today’s dive for pearls…. shall we Pearl, then?…..
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“I’m just sitting here watching the wheels go round and round.” — John Lennon

Men are afraid of women… hence all the jokes about them taking over, over slyly ruling us without us knowing it. Men’s fears of just that thing are what cause him to hate women, because they do not understand them, and fear arises out of lack of understanding. Here are a few examples of such lies, the lies that perpetuate the war between the sexes…..

“My notion of a wife at 40 is that a man should be able to change her, like a bank note, for two twenties.” — Warren Beatty

A lady is one who only shows her underwear intentionally. — Smart Bee

– Yo momma……so fat she has to buy two airline tickets. — Smart Bee

“A beautiful woman is paradise for the eyes, hell for the soul, and purgatory for the purse.” — Smart Bee

“Passionate kiss like spider web, lead to undoing of fly.” — Confucius say (No, he didn’t, but liars don’t care….)

Really, really sexist, misogynistic, and paranoid, yes? Yes….

The mere existence of these jokes, and others like them, indicates clearly what men are afraid of in women, and that is their sexuality. We… well, men, not necessarily we men, because not all of us hate them… No I don’t understand them, but that doesn’t make them any less fascinating or wonderfully different. I am aware of my own self, and my own powers, and they have naught to do with what women can do; I feel no need to compare the two, or to assume one is stronger or better. They are just different, and what is different about women is not to be feared, even if not understood. It is just to be learned, and appreciated, that’s all….and the learning is a totally awesome trip, I assure you….

But, back to the sexuality that men fear. Their fear exists because these men have never learned to understand themselves, or their place in the scheme of things; that makes them unable to understand women, and turns their ignorance to fear, and from thence to hatred and abuse against them.

Men cannot stand the thought that a woman might be more important than him, and that is a certain sign of lack of confidence, and of ignorance.  Men who know their place in life, and who are confident of their own ability to cope with that place and its demands, have no need or desire to be more important than anyone; they are complete within themselves….

Too many men in this world don’t come anywhere close to this kind of self-knowledge; most go through life without exercising more than two neurons at once, and those tend to lose function whenever the blood goes elsewhere than the brain (such as during an erection). Most men are so afraid of women that they spend half their life telling jokes like the above, and spreading the nonsensical lies that perpetuate this atrocity.

Yes, atrocity, because it is this fear and loathing, of both themselves and women, that leads to issues such as domestic abuse, sex trafficking, prostitution, and abuse of children. The only women who are actively engaged in these activities are those who have been brainwashed to believe the crap they’ve heard all their lives, and who have given up their own humanity; they are very few in number. Otherwise, it is men who perpetrate these vile actions on women…. all because of their own fear and ignorance…. I say, shame on them, for they are not men, in my world…. They are vicious, irredeemable beasts, and should be put down like the dangerous creatures they are…..

“In the dark colony of night, when I consider man’s magnificent capacity for malice, madness, folly, envy, rage, and destructiveness, and I wonder whether we shall not end up as breakfast for newts and polyps, I seem to hear the muffled cries of all the words in all the books with covers closed.” — Leo Rosten
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“The power of a bold idea uttered publicly in defiance of dominant opinion cannot be easily measured. Those people who speak out in such a way as to shake up not only the self-assurance of their enemies, but the complacency of their friends, are precious catalysts for change.” — Howard Zinn

I would like to take a moment here to acknowledge a very honorable, and brave, act by the President of this country, Barack Obama. Yesterday, in a press conference, the President put the power of his office behind the defense of human rights, by stating that his administration was fully convinced that legislation that denied marriage to gay couples, or to anyone else, was directly in opposition to the Constitution by which we live. He made this a national announcement, and set the stage for what is sure to be a fire-storm of protest from the political and religious factions that have made this issue their rallying cry.

The idea that marriage between people who are not male and female is acceptable is one whose time has obviously arrived. Current polls nationwide have borne out the fact that a large majority of the population agrees with that assessment. But it doesn’t detract from the bravery required to mount that horse at this time, for it had to be known that it would be a decision that would create a lot of noise from those who feel differently.

So, I am, for once, proud of what a President has done; it is something I cannot recall ever happening in the past, at all. Most of the time I am forced to shake my head and hide my face in shame, agreeing fully with the Dixie Chicks when they apologized for Bush to the rest of the world.

Let us all take this time to appreciate how this President has taken the reins of leadership firmly in hand, to direct our country toward a future where human rights are more important than living in fear and ignorance…. Yay, Barry!…. Good Job!

“A commitment to diversity is not a commitment to blacks or gays or any other group. A commitment to diversity is a commitment to respect and value each individual employee (person) for who they are, a commitment to help them become the best they can be by honoring their nature.” — Callan Williams
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OPERA
For centuries now, Opera has been the foremost method of humiliation available to the security forces. It began in the late 1600s, when peasant rebels were made to dress up as ridiculously fat people and get up on wooden planks in front of hundreds of their peers and shout the same things over and over and over, to a musical accompaniment. By the time the French Revolution came rolling along, it was the aristocrats who were forced to the stage to sing, gesticulate wildly and loudly perform plays devised to spread Revolutionary propaganda.  Nowadays, Opera has been driven underground, but is still carried out by the perverse, the deviant, and those with very big tits (both men and women), their audiences made up almost exclusively of establishment figures. — Daniel Bowen’s TOXIC CUSTARPEDIA

That’s what I’m talking about! Opera, to me, seems like a perfect example of how a lot of folks get all worked up over something that everyone else says is cool, but really has nothing to justify that opinion. Sure, there is some good music that came out of opera, and a few cool songs (far fewer than any opera buff would have us believe…), but for the most part it is just a bunch of hype that normally smart folks seem to fall for on a regular basis, just because a consensus says they should. It seems to me that anything that anyone does because they ‘should’ gets exactly what they deserve, i.e., twaddle… and a good portion of it.

So, don’t fall for this nonsense folks. Remember, friends don’t let friends go to an opera… unless they’re mad at them….
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Underneath this sable hearse
Lies the subject of all verse,–
Sidney’s sister, Pembroke’s mother.
Death, ere thou hast slain another,
Learn’d and fair and good as she,
Time shall throw a dart at thee.
– Ben Jonson (1573-1637) — Epitaph on the Countess of Pembroke

And as she looked around, she saw how Death the consoler,
Laying his hand upon many a heart, had healed it forever.
– Henry W. Longfellow (1807-1882) — Evangeline, Part ii

“For good men but see death, the wicked taste it.” — Johnson

“Be happy while you’re living, for you’re a long time dead.” — Scottish Proverb

Mankind has always had a fascination with Death, which, I suppose, is natural, considering it is one of the few things in this universe that all of us will experience at the same time in our lives. It is the Great Equalizer, in its finest sense; no one escapes. There are probably more books and treatises on Death, or involving some manifestation of Death, than of any other subject, save perhaps Love, another subject that deeply affects us all.

My writing about it probably enters the realm of superfluousness, but I found these great pearls, so I couldn’t resist…. Besides which, as I move ever closer to my own time to have a face to face with the Reaper, I find myself turning my thoughts to the subject, somewhat morbidly I’m sure….

How each of us faces that particular moment is about as personal as things can be, for we are all ourselves, little as we may understand that phrase, and the things we have learned in our lives are what will determine whether we are able to greet Death with dignity, or pitch a fit of major proportions….

I’m not going to go any further into this at this time, as I’m not so close to my time as all that. But, I will say that I hope that I can approach my own demise with some aplomb; I really hate to make a scene. It’s so embarrassing to wash one’s dirty linen in public, and I hope I have more panache than that…. I guess we’ll see, won’t we…. like we had a choice in the matter….  :-)
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“Most people want security in this world, not liberty.” — H.L. Mencken

Mr. Mencken has put his finger firmly on what I see as wrong in our culture today, to wit: the average person in this country has assumed the “slave” mentality, and has adopted security as their preferred state over that of being free. Far too many of my countrymen, and women, have given up the right to think for themselves, opting instead to let the beloved ruling class decide for them what they may think, and what they may do.

They have given up this right for the illusion of security; I say illusion for the word ‘security’ has no meaning in Reality. One can never be completely secure; it just isn’t possible in a world where there are so many people devoted to taking advantage of one another.

Most folks who allow this degradation of their own liberty don’t realize that they have chosen an illusion. They believe that the people who have promised them security can not only give it to them, but are doing so because they care about what happens to their constituents. This, of course, couldn’t be further from the truth, for not only are they NOT doing it for their constituents, they are deliberately lying to them to get them to believe it.

The actual danger of being taken advantage of does not come from outside our country, but from those very folks who tell us we need to be secure, rather than free.  The very people who they think are helping them are the ones who are ripping them off with both hands….

“Any body of men who believe in hell will persecute whenever they have the power.” — Joseph M. McCabe (1867-1957)

It’s enough to make a man want to drink… a lot…. At least when I’m stone cold drunk I don’t feel so bad about it. Of course, in that state I don’t feel bad about anything, so it’s obviously not a solution, but it does offer some temporary relief from having to watch it happen. Ah well, so much for the American Dream, eh?…..
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Well, I must say, this has been one of the most interesting, and chaotic Pearls that I’ve ever composed. It seemed to go all over the map as I was writing, taking me from subject to subject willy-nilly, and having a grand time about it. On looking back over it all, it seems to have held together fairly well, so I’m going to go with it once again without trying to make any sense out of why…. Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you….

 


Sometimes I sits and thinks,
and sometimes
I just sits.
gigoid

Kowabunga!

Fast Pan Soft Toe Shoe Affairs….

Ffolkes,
Legal requirements are such that I must inform you that today’s Pearl may exceed the normal limits on acceptable behavior for blogs whose content consists primarily of personal observations and opinions. I got eight hours sleep last night, if the clock isn’t lying to me, and I don’t know just what effect that will have on what goes in here. So, I figure I’d best give y’all a head’s up….

HEY! LOOK OUT!  Reading this may be hazardous. Not to you health, per se, but to your state of mind, which, it is acknowledged, MAY affect one’s health. But, there is really no worries, mates….. if you take a few basic precautions, you’ll be just fine.

First, try to suspend your beliefs for a bit…. I know, it’s hard, and they complain so much. But, if they aren’t lending their usual degree of panicky, tearful insecurity nonsense to the mix, you will be able to enjoy the show more.

Second, I’m afraid you’ll need to leave your prejudices outside the theater; you can leave them in your car, if you wish, Security officers are on patrol (somewhere…. not near your car, but somewhere…). In the rarefied atmosphere that today’s missive is likely to produce, they would constitute a severe moral hazard, and I cannot allow other patrons to be at risk for anyone’s misguided preconceptions of that nature. So, just leave them in the trunk of your car, please, for everyone’s safety, including your own.

Last, and most importantly, remember that this is all a process of finding and creating Pearls of VIRTUAL Wisdom…  Virtual. Not solid, not tangible. Not necessarily real, though at times they appear identical to actual wisdom. Maintaining a certain degree of disbelief will come in handy for you in absorbing and processing the material with which you will be presented during the festivities this morning. In short, have a little Doubt handy in case you are having trouble with what you are reading….. a little doubt is a powerful tool for sanity, believe me….. now, shall we Pearl?…. Let’s do that…..
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“We, the people, are not free.  Our democracy is but a name.  We vote? What does that mean?  We choose between Tweedledum and Tweedledee.” — Helen Keller

Odd, don’t you think, that the most insightful views of society are often presented by those who have no sight at all? Helen Keller was, obviously, an intelligent woman; no matter how patient the teacher, a stupid person could not have become the woman Ms. Keller became, without at least a modicum of basic ability to think. To think well, one must learn to observe well, and she has definitely got that down, for in no other way could this statement have been made. And that, to me, is the point. She is(was) a smart woman, and if this observation can be considered to be true, (differences of opinion on that point may be presented, and welcome, but for another discussion…. for now, lets discuss this….) why isn’t anyone else saying or doing anything to address the issue?

Well, I’ll tell ya, pardner, it’s like this…. Tweedledum and Tweedledee already fixed the election, and nobody noticed. Yup. It’s true. I would say that the voting process in this country has been a sham for oh, about 49 years, give or take a month or two. It got shot to hell, right about the same moment the rifle bullet struck the back of Jack Kennedy’s neck on that fateful day in 1963 when he was assassinated, and the last hope of the American people died with him……

When LBJ took office, it was the end of democracy as we know it. From that time to now, there has been NO candidate for the Presidency of this country who would have been, or ever again will be,  allowed to run, if the true rulers of the nation did not, or do not approve.

Our true rulers have been underground, in the background, for a long time; they don’t like the public’s eye turned upon them, for they know that if the light falls on them, it won’t take long for all their evil to start to show. These men (there are no women in the group, other than those who become even more male than their counterparts, in their vicious disregard for the rest of humanity) have been in effective control of the political process for even longer; it just became more obvious at the time of Kennedy’s demise, and has been harder to cover up ever since.

I find it disturbing to see Mitt Romney out there, seemingly with their approval, as he is far too close to what one of their inner circle looks like, and they aren’t shutting him up. This implies they no longer care if anyone sees their manipulations, and that they believe they don’t need to hide as much as before, because there is NOTHING anyone can do to change the outcome that they have already decided on. Or, it could be a sort of sleight of hand…. present Romney for people to watch, then get Obama safely elected, and settle right back into the process of eliminating the Bill of Rights, a project they’ve been working on for some time now.

I feel I must point out to all the folks out there who believe our current President to be a new hope, that this is the same man who signed the National Defense Authorization Act into effect on New Year’s Eve, while the American public was busy drinking and celebrating the new year, completely unaware that their oh-so-liberal president had just handed the Bill of Rights over to the National Security Agency, and its myrmidons, to do with as it pleased….. If you doubt me on this, check the news from that day…. it’s a fact, it happened, and it is now too late…. officially.

The first and middle rounds are done folks. It is now the final rounds, and we are now officially at war, at least at the ballot box,  with our own government, by their own decree. I don’t know about y’all, but I’m stocking up on ammunition, food, water, and body armor…… because the day of the final showdown is not far away. One of these days, and it is not far off, the gloves are going to come off all the way, and you will see the government of this country firing weapons at its own citizens, in the name of “public security”….

I’d think about this, if I were y’all, and think seriously. Try not to believe whatever they tell you, just because a guy on TV said it; examine everything with a critical eye, and speak up. But, be ready to duck, because I have a feeling they are no longer going to even give a warning shot, or yell, before they fire at us….. If you look at them, you will see that the ‘executive orders’ in the NDAA say they are not required to do so….

Don’t be distracted, folks, by all the yammering going on about taxes, or healthcare, or racism, or any of the other bullshite that is currently touted as “what the American people care about”, and being spewed out of every media orifice in the land.  I care about my rights. I care about being able to live my life as I choose. I care about human dignity, and freedom, and compassion for others. But this election isn’t about any of those things, it’s not what is in the papers, and it’s not what is in the people’s hearts. It is about control over society, and money. That’s it.

It has been about that for a long time now. Unless the American public comes to its senses, it isn’t going to change, either, until Mama Nature steps in, and sends us all back to the drawing board as another failed biological experiment. That is Reality folks, and is not subject to our manipulation. We can control what we see of Reality, but we can’t change its nature, and it will end us as surely as the sun comes up every morning, if we don’t make some drastic changes. And, unfortunately, none of those changes will be allowed by the beloved ruling class, so….. end game…… Deal with it….

Once you’ve tried to change the world you find it’s a whole bunch easier to change your mind. — Smart Bee
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Morality is learned, not legislated. — Smart Bee

This will be a very short section. The above is something I believe to have the force of natural law behind it; as such it is not susceptible to our ability or desire to change it. It’s just the way it is. And I wish, for all of our sakes, that all the idiots in government, liberals, conservatives, libertarians, independents, and the churches in this country, of ALL denominations, would get this into their heads, and learn to accept the fact that there is NOTHING THEY CAN DO TO CHANGE THIS….. no matter how strongly they wish it weren’t so, it is so.

No matter how many laws they make and/or pass to try to legislate what they believe to be moral into law, each and every one of them will fail. History has proved this beyond any shadow of possible doubt,  literally thousands and thousands of times, and it is no longer a subject for serious debate. It hasn’t been for three thousand years, though people seem to act differently, and continue to complain, and try to “make it so”…..

So, please, those of you who wish that the rest of society would just be like you, forget it. Not going to happen, and you can’t pass a law to make it so…. Get over it…….please. All the noise and crap you subject the rest of us to is getting tiresome….

Horatio: O day and night, but this is wondrous strange!
Hamlet: And therefore as a stranger give it welcome.
There are more things in heaven and Earth, Horatio,
Than are dreamt of in your philosophy.
– W. Shakespeare, Hamlet, Act I, Scene V

(I know, it’s from Willie, but when it fits, I use it, no matter whose it is…..)
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“A nuclear war cannot be won and must never be fought.” — Ronald Reagan

I’m a fair person; it says so right here on the label, and I think an examination of my record in that arena would indicate the truth of that statement. So, when I find myself to be in the wrong about something, I am willing to admit it, if for no other reason, so we can just get on with things. So, mostly, when I’m wrong, I say I’m wrong. After finding and reading the above, though it galls me no end, I have to admit to being wrong about Ronald Reagan. Yes, I know, a shocking thought isn’t it?

Well, calm yourselves, it isn’t what you may think. In toto, I still think that Ronnie was perhaps the absolute worst President this country has seen in its 200+ year history. We are still, as a society, trying to crawl out of the hole his Reaganomics dug for us, and his war-mongering, rich fat cat, elitist sycophants and admirers are still entrenched throughout the legislative system and the Supreme Court, causing no end of problems with their conservative lack of compassion for the common man. No, no, I’m no fool, and the evidence of his sheer evil intent remains just as valid as it ever was.

But, the above statement, if he actually said it, and actually believed it, must be acknowledged as being not just true, but as eminently sensible. In that case, it deserves mention, if only for the fact that, for once in his life, he made a statement that indicates there might be a tiny little part of him that thinks about other people and what might be good for them.

More likely, however, given his prior track record, he believes that because of the danger to HIMSELF, the risk is too great; he doesn’t like for things to not yield to his control. I would have a hard time accepting that, all of a sudden, out of nowhere, he grew a conscience…. Not bloody likely…… I don’t like to resort to calling names, when English suits itself so well to cursing and vilifying without depending on their no-doubt cathartic use, but I’m afraid Ronnie was an elitist asshole, plain and simple.

Have you taunted a Conservative today?– Smart Bee

(Smarter than usual, too… Cute….. Conservatives, just like Liberals, turn all sorts of neat colors when you question their basic beliefs, or show disrespect for their heroes, especially Saint Ronnie the Raygun…. or, Bishop Barry, the New Hope….NOT!)

(Sorry, but, I think, therefore I am… dangerous, that is… it’s a gift…..)
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“In walking, just walk. In sitting, just sit. Above all, don’t wobble.” — Yun-Men

This is good advice. Think about it a while. It will grow on you….. and grow…. and grow…. and grow….. then you can stop. And wobble no more…
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“The hottest places in hell are reserved for those who in times of great moral crises maintain their neutrality.” — Dante Alighieri (1265-1321)

Though I’m not entirely convinced of physical reality of the entire Heaven/Hell scenario, I do like to believe that some sort of Universal justice is carried out, and after death is certainly a good time for it. When I let myself imagine such fine examples of that justice promised by almost every religion in the afterlife, my tendency is to agree fully with the above. But, I would also like to add that I like to believe that there are quite a few little doors on the lowest levels of Hell (if it’s as bad as it should be, it should be capitalized), and each leads to a room for a number of folks who absolutely deserve to be there for all eternity…..

There would be, in my version of Hell, a room for those who deliberately abuse women, children, animals of any kind, or any form of life at all; it is a genetic defect and the species would be better off without them altogether. This room is a good response by Reality, if we MUST suffer their existence.

Another room would be reserved for those who seek power over other people, for any reason. Those in that category who use that power to harm, abuse, and kill others in the search for that power will be given priority admission.

A fourth room would welcome those who engaged in human trafficking of any type. All of them. Every single fucking one of them. And the tortures and pain waiting for them in that room would be the cruelest, most agonizing that the Master Torturer’s demons could think up for them.

Right next door to this room would be those who dealt drugs for profit and power, dealing directly with, as both cause and effect, the despair and weakness of human poverty, and the vulnerability caused by that, by illness, or by developmental challenges. In short, those who made money trading in human misery.

I think that’s all the doors I would need; but, humans are inventive, and I like to think that there are still doors available, for any other crimes that humans can think up to perpetrate on one another that I may have inadvertently passed over…. I’m sure, as a professional, Beelzebub has learned to plan for the future, and for unseen contingencies…..

Well, even if it’s all a fantasy, which I have to admit is quite likely (even my most optimistic side will only admit to a 50/50 chance of this resembling reality, much as I’d like it to happen this way…..), it’s fun to think about, for our own sanity…..
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As I suspected when I awoke this morning, after eight unexpected but thoroughly welcome and appreciated hours of sleep, today’s content got rather…. expansive is a good word, I guess. I thought it might; getting that much rest tends to give me a boost of energy, which will naturally end up in what I write, as it is the first real call for it during the day. I don’t, however, always know just what may be produced by all that energy; if it taps into my outrage, it can tie me to the keyboard for a long time, ranting. Or, it can turn to fantasy, and get a bit strange even for me. No way to tell ahead of time, what with the way I carry out this process…..

All seems to have gone well today, though, so, no worries…. the Helen Keller rant gave me a thousand words that I’ll probably trim to post as an article on Triond or somewhere, so that’s a good thing. And it all looks solid to me, cognitively speaking. So, I’m going to let if fly on its own, and let the consequences begin; I seem to have been indiscriminate in my choice of targets, and didn’t leave out very many……. Y’all take care out there……


Sometimes I sits and thinks,
and sometimes
I just sits.

gigoid

Kowabunga!

Today is the Thirteenth of Never…..

Ffolkes,
So, here I sit, thoughts tumbling around in normal morning disarray, when all of a sudden, it hits me. My left hand, that is, slapping itself smartly to the forehead in dismay, as it occurs to me that not a single one of the hundreds of loose thoughts running around in there is suitable for publication. Most are thoughts I wouldn’t submit to Hustler magazine, and they’re pretty slack; I wouldn’t dream of putting any of them out for your consumption. There could be a bad run on the ER soon afterward, as most of them are toxic. Oh, wait, here’s one that doesn’t look too bad…..kinda dinged up, & could use a coat of paint, but it should fly…..okay, we’ll use it. Cut. Print…..
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“There are few things, apparently, more helpful to a writer than having once been a weird little kid.” — Katherine Paterson

If this is true, I should be a lock for a Pulitzer Prize! I won’t say I was the weirdest kid in my neighborhood. I can’t, because there weren’t any kids in the neighborhood. All the other families with kids moved away after a few days of their kids coming home after playing at my house, and telling their parents that, like me, they were going to start their own cockroach farms, so they could sell them to the other kids, too. My folks never did figure out why everyone was always moving in and out again; they figured it was the taste of the tap water. But then, they were fairly clueless themselves; they both were astrophysicists, and spent a lot of nights at the local university where they taught, watching the stars or talking to computers. They thought it was good that I had interests outside of physics, and encouraged me to expand my circle of interests to whatever intrigued me. A very progressive pair of parental units they were, though a little stuffy otherwise. I mean, who still listens to old Lawrence Welk music? Or Burl Ives? I swear, by the time I was six, I had a very complete, detailed daydream of how I would take my Uzi down to the Ugly Bug Ball and have some fun….. that’s not weird, is it?…….
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“The cry has been that when war is declared, all opposition should therefore be hushed.  A sentiment more unworthy of a free country could hardly be propagated.  If the doctrine be admitted, rulers have only to  declare war and they are screened at once from scrutiny …  In war, then, as in peace, assert the freedom of speech and of the press. Cling to this as the bulwark of all our rights and privileges.” — William Ellery Channing

“It’s easy to tell when a politician is lying. Watch his lips.  If they move, he’s lying.” — Charles Lyall (Think about it; the mere existence of this joke is evidence of the accuracy of its premise…..)

Too late. We weren’t watching closely enough, and ‘they’ finally revealed their true colors. I really had such hopes when Obama was elected in 08; that is probably why he was elected, because everyone else also had the hope that changes would be made, changes that would turn this country back onto the path of reason. But, for three years and more, Barack has, one-by-one, broken every campaign promise he made, culminating a few days ago with the most egregious bid for power ever seen in this country.

By signing the National Defense Authorization Act, Barack Obama has sealed the fate of the Bill of Rights; they have been condemned to death, with no appeal to be allowed. With the collusion of Congress, and the willing abrogation of duty by the Supreme Court, the American people have just witnessed the end of democracy in this country. Free speech, freedom of religion, freedom to assemble, and the freedom from unjust laws (i.e., right to counsel & jury of peers, writ of habeas corpus, right to be confronted with accusers, all gone…..), freedom from unreasonable search & seizure. All of these “rights” are now gone, poof! And nobody is saying a word about it in the press…..my plans for the future have changed, and I will be seeking somewhere else in this world to live out my remaining years. I’m not going to stay here, when I know for certain that I will end up fighting with my own brothers and sisters over the loss of our rights. As soon as I can get it figured out, I’m outta here; it’s no longer a free country…..literally.

“I have been thinking that I would make a proposition to my Republican friends…that if they will stop telling lies about the Democrats, we will stop telling the truth about them.” — Adlai Stevenson (Neither the Repubs nor the Demos are at all interested in the public’s well-being, and as such have become a problem that isn’t even looking for a solution…..)

No greater grief than to remember days
Of joy when misery is at hand.
– Dante (1265-1321) — Hell, Canto v, Line 121
(sorry, after writing the comments, I kept finding perfect Pearls to go with it…..)

Do not read this fortune under penalty of law. Violators will be prosecuted. — Penal Code sec. 2.3.2 (II.a.) (NDAA, v 3.0, 1/1/2012)
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Go placidly amid the noise and haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence. As far as possible, without surrender, be on good terms with all persons. Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to others, even to the dull and ignorant; they too have their story. Avoid loud and aggressive persons, they are vexations to the spirit. If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain and bitter, for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself. Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans. Keep interested in your own career, however humble; it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time. Exercise caution in your business affairs, for the world is full of trickery. But let this not blind you to what virtue there is; many persons strive for high ideals, and everywhere life is full of heroism. Be yourself.  Especially do not feign affection. Neither be cynical about love; for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment it is as perennial as the grass. Take kindly the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth. Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune. But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings. Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness. Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here. And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should. Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be.  And whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life, keep peace with your soul. With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be careful. Strive to be happy. — Max Ehrman (1872-1945) – “Desiderata” (1927)

Ah, Desiderata! How well I remember reading this for the first time. At that time, I was a newly minted Hippie, attending the university in Berkeley, and engaging full time in the expansion of my belief systems. This piece became one of the signature signs of the movement, sort of a manual for free love and all it implies. Every line here was designed to be uplifting and positive in its outlook toward life in all its glory. I admit, its really sappy in places, and somewhat naive. But it remains a pretty good outline for a life well-lived; its not as easy as one might think to be this positive all the time. But according to the precepts of the piece, that’s okay too. It’s all okay, because the universe is unfolding as it should……whether we think so or not.
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“How often we recall, with regret, that Napoleon once shot at a magazine editor and missed him and killed a publisher. But we remember with charity, that his intentions were good.” — Mark Twain

This is the goal. This is my whole purpose in writing. To be this subtle in delivering a blow from a sledgehammer; to insult so thoroughly in one line; to indicate passion, love, hate, literature, sports, and morality with such a smoothly fitted collection of words, this is my Nirvana, my Quest, the object of my jealous envy……. No really, it just doesn’t get any better than this. It’s the kind of humor that most appeals to me, for it pokes fun not only at the victims of the humor, but at the author too.

I can just see Mr. Clemens, telling this with a twinkle in his eye below a raised brow, a small little Mona Lisa smile, and a mustache trembling with the effort not to burst into guffaws. Perfect. A few days ago, I was flabbergasted, and extremely flattered, when a reader said that one of my lines sounded like something Twain might have written. I almost burst with happiness, and floated around for quite a while on that little bubble of joy. Now all I have to do is figure out how to sound like that all the time. Well, not JUST like Mark Twain, more like me with his skill. I’ll keep working on it…….
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Curse on all laws but those which love has made!
Love, free as air at sight of human ties,
Spreads his light wings, and in a moment flies.
– Alexander Pope (1688-1744)  — Eloisa to Abelard, Line 74

As with any good piece of poetry, nothing needs to be added here. Just enjoy…..
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Well! I should get up early more often, I guess. No shortage of material today; it just kept flowing on. Hope you enjoy taking it in as much as I did getting it out. Y’all take care out there…..


Sometimes I sits and thinks,
and sometimes
I just sits.

gigoid

Dozer

Kowabunga!