Calamitous noise greeted me today, as what sounded suspiciously like Irish bagpipes assaulted my ears from outside the window, so sharp and harsh, it seemed as if all the banshees of ancient legend were holding congress in the yard….. Plaintive, chilling notes tried to tear out my heart with penetrating cries of anguish, inexorably pulling me to the window to see what was causing the hullabaloo. I shall never forget the sight that met my gaze, now etched in my memory forever….
There, in the narrow space between buildings, stood a…… Okay, here’s the deal….. This started leaking out as I sat down to begin today, and seemed pretty cool at first. As I continued to put down the path to the strange vision in my mind’s eye, it began to fade away. like fog in a strong breeze, leaving me right where you see, lost, and red of face… For the life of me, I can’t think of anything strange enough to keep it going, so, I’m leaving it to y’all to do that…..
Feel free to leave a comment, if you have something that might work, and don’t mind sharing the idea….. Conversely, you can do what I plan to do, which is to put it out of my mind, forever, and get on with the rest of today’s effort….. I have the advantage of knowing that whatever comes next couldn’t possibly be as lame as this…. Well, I suppose I can’t say that, either, but, I can definitely guarantee it will….. well, shoot…. Now that I think about it, I can’t guarantee anything but correct spelling, so, we’ll just leave it all right there, and get on with the rest of today’s business, ‘kay? ‘Kay!….
I promised not to whine any more, and I won’t…. but, I will say this…. This daily posting stuff isn’t as easy as it looks from the outside…. The Big Blue Room has once again laid demands upon a portion of my time today, so I’d best get on with this, or it won’t get done…. I don’t know what might happen if I let it go; I’m having a hard time envisioning a day without being able to experience this relief at the outset. I do know that it would jam up my feelings, a state of emotional constipation, as it were, and would probably send me right into total curmudgeon mode.
While that’s a comfortable skin for me to wear, it does tend to alienate others, which tends to complicate life rather than simplify it….. So, I’ll just put it on for long enough to rant, or find an appropriate old Pearl, thereby assuaging any potential build-up of undue angst or anxiety…. Showing one’s asshole face to the world can be fun, but only if let out on deserving recipients, and I don’t plan on hanging out with any of those today, thankfully….
Okay, enough rambling for one morning…. it’s almost 6:30 and I have yet to create a single pearl. Dithering won’t get it done, so….. Shall we Pearl?…..
“You come from far away, with pictures in your eyes.
Of coffee shoppes and morning streets and the blue and silent sunrise.
But night is the cathedral where we recognize the sign.
We strangers know each other now as part of a whole design.”
– Suzanne Vega, Gypsy
“A little sunlight is the best disinfectant.” — Justice Louis Brandeis
In the past few days, I have been ranting, albeit mildly, and without specific target, beyond some telling shots at a large group of humanity, and the moral flaws displayed thereby…. My intent in producing such rants is very aptly stated above by the good judge, showing again that someone can always say better what we try to say ourselves. But, that doesn’t detract at all from the veracity of what I’ve written, or the need for the light to be shined on those parts of society that most need it…. to wit: the actions of our Beloved Ruling Class, and their owners, the Corporate Masters…. with the complicit support of the Priestly Hierarchies, and, the blindly obedient horde of myrmidons dedicated to following the dictates of the ruling classes, the Police and Paramilitary Wannabes….
Of late, there has been a lot of talk bandied about the internet, regarding the personal data being stolen (no other word for it….) by the government, as authorized by Presidential Executive Order, (a concept I am not sure was ever mentioned in the Constitution…), in its insane, paranoid pursuit of terrorists, and terrorism…. In fact, by writing those words here, I am guaranteeing myself an audience, because they are two of the key words used by Prism, the data mining software in use by the NSA, FBI, and, no doubt many other less well publicized agencies, to mark any communication for further review, with the intent of examination for terrorist tendencies or sympathies…
So, just by mentioning the subject, I know I will have at least one NSA geek, or an FBI agent, who will be reading over whatever I write today…. Actually, the foregoing sentences contain at least eight words that are on the extensive list of such words that will gain their attention, so I guess I’d better make this good….
I am proud of what the NSA contractor did; I agree with his own assessment of his action, as intended to be of benefit to the American people, not as an act of treason, and applaud his courage in the face of knowing he would be subjected to vilification by the ignorant, and prosecution by those in authority. It is very easy these days to label an act such as this as treasonous, given the recent (mostly successful) attempts by government agencies to justify their paranoia. Since 9/11/2001, (See? Another key item for them to target…. I don’t know if I’m brave, or stupid…. or just old enough not to care one way or the other….), it has become the fashion for politicians to wrap themselves up in the flag, and inflame the fears of the common man about terrorism. This includes the naming of anyone who protests the loss of their rights as ‘treasonous’, ostensibly for placing America in danger, by exposing the clandestine gathering of information by government agencies… or, in simpler terms, by shining a light on things that are going on in the dark….
“Well, if crime fighters fight crime and fire fighters fight fire, what do freedom fighters fight? They never mention that part to us, do they?” — George Carlin
No, they don’t ever mention that…. nor do they mention ANY of the stuff being done out of sight of the public eye. I hold it to be a very dangerous policy to allow government agencies to operate in the dark, to make legal a great number of actions which, if performed by any citizen, would cause intense public outrage, and which, in truth, are ethically, morally, and, most importantly, Constitutionally unlawful. Every one of the rights supposedly granted by the Bill of Rights has now been restricted, in favor of illegal searches and seizures, loss of privacy, rampant police intimidation, and a government that believes it can do whatever it wants, as long as it is in pursuit of “national security”….
Sorry, but, I’m not buying any of it…. But, then, I have suspected for many years that the government of this country has been hiding the biggest part of what they do from the public, for a very long time…. Remember Dwight Eisenhower? He was that President who, back in 1954, sent thousands of American troops to Vietnam, to act as “advisers” to the brave soldiers of South Vietnam, who were fighting their own “war of independence” against the ungodly Communists in the North (right next to Red China, don’t y’know?…)…. Of course, when good ol’ Dwight did this, he didn’t bother to inform anyone; he just sent them over, and ignored the whole issue in public….
Since that time, almost sixty years ago, the government of this country has pursued a policy of “what the public doesn’t know won’t hurt me” in almost every area of national and international involvement. Whenever there is too much clamor from that public about such clandestine activities, or too much light begins to shine on one or more of the shenanigans always taking place somewhere, there is, oops, some kind of terrorist attack, or another shooting at a school, or a plane crash, or an earthquake, or anything at all, some manufactured, others just serendipitous calamities that are part of our natural world…. Any of these will do to distract the public eye away from whatever it is that has been exposed….
I have always wondered a bit about the timing of the attacks on the WTC and Pentagon in 2001…. They seemed to happen right when there was a strong push in the news to investigate the election results of both 1996, and 2000, results that had the Junior Shrub in office, rather than the greener candidate, Gore. In both those elections, there were critical glitches in the vote counting process in key states, oddly enough, the two states that provided the key electoral votes to get Bush elected, despite having lost the national popular vote, twice (Florida in 1996, and Ohio in 2000….) Any who, all of that was very close to coming under intense scrutiny, when, all of a sudden, we are attacked, by an unknown terrorist group (strangely enough, a group whose leader was a member of the Saudi Royal family, who are close friends of the Bushes….)
After the attacks, there was a singularly lackadaisical attempt to ascertain the culprits; none of the information gathered on them ever examined where the money to finance the attacks came from, an omission that is contrary to ANY professional investigation…. On TV police dramas, in the news, and, in the minds of any intelligent person, it is always made clear that finding the guilty will include, if not exclusively use, “following the money”…. It is basic criminology to find out who paid for it when a crime of such a large scope is committed. The very lack of effort in that direction makes one wonder, just a bit….
Well, I’ve now discussed the issue long enough to have used just about every key word in the program that mines data for the National Security Agency, so, we’ll see whether or not any of what I’ve discussed is enough to get their attention…. I think I’ve also managed to mention just about every conspiracy theory out there for anyone to see, ….. If any official response is generated, we’ll know just how badly things have gotten, when a free citizen of this country can potentially become a target for police and security agencies of the government, merely for exercising the right of free speech…. In a way, I suppose you could say this is an experiment, designed to gauge the degree of paranoia that is so obvious in our BRC….
I’m letting it go now, both to get it done, and because it is such a depressing subject…. I think I need some poetry, to soothe my soul…..
Teacher: “Bart, give us an example of a modern-day paradox.”
Bart: “Damned if you do, damned if you don’t.”
– Bart the Genius “The Simpsons”
“What a lumbering poor vehicle prose is for the conveying of a great thought! … Prose wanders around with a lantern & laboriously schedules & verifies the details & particulars of a valley & its frame of crags & peaks, then Poetry comes, & lays bare the whole landscape with a single splendid flash.” — Mark Twain
A spirit passed before me: I beheld
The face of immortality unveiled–
Deep sleep came down on every eye save mine–
And there it stood,–all formless–but divine:
Along my bones the creeping flesh did quake;
And as my damp hair stiffened, thus it spake:
‘Is man more just than God? Is man more pure
Than He who deems even Seraphs insecure?
Creatures of clay–vain dwellers in the dust!
The moth survives you, and are ye more just?
Things of a day! you wither ere the night,
Heedless and blind to Wisdom’s wasted light!’
~~ George Gordon Lord Byron ~~
“I’m late, I’m late, for a very important date….” — The White Rabbit, in “Through the Looking Glass”
Well, I’m not, but I do sympathize, having once, like all of us, been subject to the whims and demands of others….. Now that I am not, I can pretty much do as I like, so, I do…. which means I get to make this an old-school pearl, just because I can…. Not only can you not stop me, I don’t think you would be that unkind, so, I’m going for it…. I’m not sure what form it will take, but I do know the initial find is a damn good one, so the rest should be fine…. Enjoy, and, if you find you cannot, well, just ignore it, or go back and read the poem again…. that’s the best I can do for you, without resorting to drugs….
“When you have only two pennies left in the world, buy a loaf of bread with one, and a lily with the other.” — Chinese Proverb
“The world is not to be put in order, the world is order incarnate. It is for us to put ourselves in unison with this order.” — Henry Miller
“For one human being to love another human being: that is perhaps the most difficult task that has been entrusted to us, the ultimate task, the final test and proof, the work for which all other work is merely preparation.” — Rainer Maria Rilke
“People always get what they want. But there is a price for everything. Failures are either those who do not know what they want or are not prepared to pay the price asked them. The price varies from individual to individual. Some get things at bargain-sale prices, others only at famine prices. But it is no use grumbling. Whatever price you are asked, you must pay.” — W. H. Auden — Smith College Commencement, 1940
“Faith in a holy cause is to a considerable extent a substitute for lost faith in ourselves.” — Eric Hoffer
“I am quite sure that (bar one) I have no race prejudices, and I think I have no color prejudices or caste prejudices nor creed prejudices. Indeed I know it. I can stand any society. all that I care to know is that a man is a human being – that is enough for me; he can’t be any worse.” — Mark Twain — Harper’s Magazine, September, 1899
“We have come to a place now where our search for Truth must no longer be for the rewards; it must no longer be our seeking a creed to follow, but it must be our living a life.” — H. Emilie Cady
Okay, well, that kind of turned on me, but, don’t worry, I’m not seriously injured, and the bleeding will stop soon, I’m sure….. Y’all be careful there near the end, it’s kind of a tricky little jog in the path….. And the point is kind of sharp, too….
There…. A generous portion of plain speaking, some fine poetry, and a bit of obscure mental gymnastics, all for the bargain price of… well, it’s free, so it’s even more of a bargain….. Now, all I have to do is see if it is palatable, too…. Well, it’s edible, if not palatable…. But, I’d suggest having some antacids on hand…. With no further ado, I bid thee adieu…. Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..
When I works, I works hard.
When I sits, I sits loose.
When I thinks, I falls asleep.
Which is Why….
Sometimes I sits and thinks,
I just sits.