13 Simple Steps to A Newer, Cleaner Planetary Unit!

Ffolkes,

May seventeen foul demons from the deepest hells of Mordor make fun of your face! There, take that! I guess THAT will teach you!…. Back, foul fiends, begone with you!….

Huh? Oh, sorry, forgot it was time for that….. Half a second, let me just….. ugh! Okay…. last one dispatched…..Come on in, I was just putting away these old attitudes, and they didn’t want to go. I have new ones ordered up & delivered every few years, just to make sure the ones I have aren’t getting too inflexible, or unable to adapt to changing conditions…. Nowadays, what with the new, forced adaptations we’re going to be going through, it’s a good idea to rotate out the old ones regularly, lest one be caught with one’s spiritual pants down, so to speak… While the new ones are always cool, the service that delivers them doesn’t haul away the old ones, so, that part is up to me, & I thought I’d get a head-start on that this morning, since I was up at four in the AM….

Today, I’ll be creating a different sort of Pearl….. and I’m not even going to tell you how, or even why….. How, you may ask, am I able to show you such a fine example of showmanship, and still keep the inner workings of the process to yourself? You say I can’t ever seem to shut myself up, so how do I expect to do it now? Simple…. Oatmeal, dried into a crust, burnt, and shoved down my nose…. Then, we prop up my stiff carcass at the keyboard, boot up the computer, and hope for the best…. Seems to work pretty well, so far, every time…

Disgusting, yes? I hope so, that’s what I was shooting for…. I wouldn’t even have minded a case or too of spew, as long as y’all remembered to use the bags provided in the seat back in front of you. Oh, jeez, Harry, did you have to use the one with the hole in it? I told that flunky not to recycle them, but, do they listen? Of course not…. Well, sorry, I guess you can use the old towels in the corner there, and, if you need it, there’s some Windex in the cabinet under the bathroom sink…. go ahead and use that, if you think it will help…. Thanks for trying….

Well, now that the excitement is, hopefully, over with for one morning, (I’m not sure I want to encourage this much hilarity again; we’ve used up a pretty fair supply of paper towels, and we’re only done with four paragraphs or so….), WHERE shall we begin?…. Oh, I just have so many things I want to tell you…. I’ve been so busy, thinking, and…. oh, shit…. I’ve been thinking again, but, as usual, I forgot to fire up the backup server, so there’s no extra copy if I forge…… well, shit, again…. If I forget, is what I was saying, when it struck me forcefully that, hey, I already forgot!…. Damn…

Okay, new plan…. First we wobble, then we Pearl…. and since, by the evidence presented above, we’ve wobbled aplenty, we’ll now be going on to the meat of this sandwich, or, whatever may come next in this plane of Reality, such as we find it…. a bit worn, but still willing to play the game…..

Shall we Pearl?….

“These are the times that try men’s souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country; but he that stands it now, deserves the love and thanks of our men and women. Tyranny, like Hell, is not easily conquered; yet we have this consolation with us, that the harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly: it is dearness only that gives every thing its value.” — Thomas Paine
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Yesterday, part of the ranting portion of the program spoke about lawyers…. Serendipitously, one of the old pearls that I went to read, upon the suggestion of the WP suggestion bots, who put their ideas at the bottom of my posts, had a wonderful rant about lawyers, specifically, from way back in November of 2012…. Here ’tis, to finish off my remarks on those oh-so-despised members of our Asininny class…..

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“He who dies a thousand deaths meets the final hour with the calmness of one who approaches a well remembered door.” — Heywood Brown

I almost passed this by when I first read it, then I thought a moment about it, and it occurred to me that it sounds like a defense of cowardice, which is what we usually associate with the phrase “He who dies a thousand deaths”…. Upon further reflection, though, that phrase, though certainly appropriate for describing the state of uncontrolled fear that brings a human to react with cowardice, could also be used to describe some of my own experience in dealing with violence. To generalize that thought, it could be said that a person who faces situations where death is hovering nearby, always a threat to manifest its presence in reality, is also dying a death each time, because their imagination is always aware of that proximity of possibility….

I made the mistake once of counting how many times I faced off with a person who wanted to rip my head off, and would have done so had I not acted to prevent that from becoming reality. Suffice it to say it was entirely too many times, though somewhat less than a thousand (not by much, but less….), and my imagination was stimulated into conjuring visions of possible outcomes that included my own death, each and every time.

Of course, the key to success in such situations is to be able to put aside, or ignore, those visions, in order to keep them from becoming real, and I learned very well to react very quickly in a way that allowed me to control the outcome, rather than random chance or, worse, having the other party assume that control. Fortunately for all involved, I never lost…. at least, not in the sense of becoming physically injured, or dead. (Nobody else that I controlled was ever hurt or killed,  either, a fact I’m pretty proud of…. and mental injuries are another story, entirely….)

The quote above is one that I find to be a comfort to me as I get closer to the time when death will come to make my acquaintance in this lifetime. As a conscious being, I naturally have to believe that my mind, or soul, if you prefer, will not cease to exist; only a change that we do not understand will happen, one which no one has ever successfully explained with any degree of certainty. There is, of course, no evidence to support the belief that we do not merely stop existing, like the flame of a candle, when we die, that we will somehow “wake up” somewhere else, according to our particular set of preferences in such philosophies.

Nothing tangible can be produced, or has ever been produced, that makes such a belief a conclusion; contrarily, there is also no evidence available that it is not true. We each have a strong feeling that our soul is indestructible, like energy of any type, but no incontrovertible proof is available for either side of the issue.

Thus, we can only hold on to our sense of spiritual connection to the universe, that part of us that knows that, like sunlight, or electricity, or heat, our conscious mind is a manifestation of energy, one that, like all the other kinds of energy we perceive, does not cease to exist, ever. It may change forms, or even types (as light can become electricity, or motion become heat….), but it does not leave the universe at all.

To me, and to certain philosophies, the qualities of water are a good example to use as a way of understanding this principle. Water cannot be destroyed. You can, by altering its temperature, cause it to change form, from ice, to water, to steam…. but it cannot be destroyed at all. Our minds, and thoughts, can be thought of as water, ever flexible, ever changeable, yet never ceasing to exist in any way, and retaining within its being all the qualities that make it, and us, what we are…. another unique part of a beautifully complex and wonderful reality….

To me, that is, indeed, a comforting thought….

“If I am I because you are you, and if you are you because I am I, then I am not I, and you are not you” ~~ Hassidic rabbi
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Again, it seems serendipity is guiding my attention…. In searching this morning for a poem a bit off my usual track, I came across this one, from William Blake…. In light of my recent rants on how America is, well, heading for the toilet, and not to enjoy a soothing episode of relief, but, to get flushed…. Perhaps, my imagery isn’t exactly the most elegant for its intended purpose, but, you get the drift….

Any who, I thought it was interesting to see how someone from another country viewed ours, from the vantage point of the past…. Blake was an interesting man, to say the least…. A poet of little renown in his own time, he is now considered one of the most seminal Romantic poets; in addition, he painted, and one contemporary critic was moved to remark of his work in no small way, when he described Blake as, “far and away the greatest artist Britain has ever produced” (Information from Poemhunter.com).

America, A Prophecy

The shadowy Daughter of Urthona stood before red Orc,
When fourteen suns had faintly journey’d o’er his dark abode:
His food she brought in iron baskets, his drink in cups of iron:
Crown’d with a helmet and dark hair the nameless female stood;
A quiver with its burning stores, a bow like that of night,
When pestilence is shot from heaven: no other arms she need!
Invulnerable though naked, save where clouds roll round her loins
Their awful folds in the dark air: silent she stood as night;
For never from her iron tongue could voice or sound arise,
But dumb till that dread day when Orc assay’d his fierce embrace.
‘Dark Virgin,’ said the hairy youth, ‘thy father stern, abhorr’d,
Rivets my tenfold chains while still on high my spirit soars;
Sometimes an Eagle screaming in the sky, sometimes a Lion
Stalking upon the mountains, and sometimes a Whale, I lash
The raging fathomless abyss; anon a Serpent folding
Around the pillars of Urthona, and round thy dark limbs
On the Canadian wilds I fold; feeble my spirit folds,
For chain’d beneath I rend these caverns: when thou bringest food
I howl my joy, and my red eyes seek to behold thy face–
In vain! these clouds roll to and fro, and hide thee from my sight.’

Silent as despairing love, and strong as jealousy,
The hairy shoulders rend the links; free are the wrists of fire;
Round the terrific loins he seiz’d the panting, struggling womb;
It joy’d: she put aside her clouds and smiled her first-born smile,
As when a black cloud shews its lightnings to the silent deep.

Soon as she saw the terrible boy, then burst the virgin cry:

‘I know thee, I have found thee, and I will not let thee go:
Thou art the image of God who dwells in darkness of Africa,
And thou art fall’n to give me life in regions of dark death.
On my American plains I feel the struggling afflictions
Endur’d by roots that writhe their arms into the nether deep.
I see a Serpent in Canada who courts me to his love,
In Mexico an Eagle, and a Lion in Peru;
I see a Whale in the south-sea, drinking my soul away.
O what limb-rending pains I feel! thy fire and my frost
Mingle in howling pains, in furrows by thy lightnings rent.
This is eternal death, and this the torment long foretold.’

~~ William Blake ~~

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Now you see the nefarious genius of my plan…. I’ve created an entire pearl, using primarily work I accomplished over two years ago…. Pretty slick, eh? Now I have time to prepare myself mentally for the important event I have on my plate for a couple hours from now…. What happens at that time will play a big part in determining the physical AND emotional tenor of a lot of the next few months, (or, alternately, it could have little effect at all, which is okay, as long as one particular issue is resolved to my satisfaction….)…. so, I’m looking forward to the challenge of making things come out the way I intend…. SIGH….. Shaping Reality to suit our needs and purposes can be exhausting…. So, here is my third cheat of the day…. but, I think you’ll agree with me that it couldn’t be any better if it was fresh….

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11/16/11
Ffolkes,

Good morrow to you…. let us begin as we mean to go on….

“Writing is easy. All you do is stare at a blank sheet of paper until drops of blood form on your forehead.” — Gene Fowler

This line is included today merely to give y’all an idea of what I go through every morning to produce this…. whatever it is. It is a pretty good description, actually, because when I’m done, I actually feel battered and bloody….. Actually, bloody well-used-up is what it is. Maybe it’s easier for other writers; I don’t know. But for me, to produce something that my standards will allow me to publish for others to read, is much like having a piece of my soul ripped out, taking a a kidney with it.

The funny thing is, though it hurts a lot, I wouldn’t stop doing it, even if I could. The pain of creation, which. after all. requires destruction first, is a worthy payoff for the sense of accomplishment I get when I see one of my pieces online for all to see. Quite a rush actually….

“Most human beings have an almost infinite capacity for taking things for granted.” — Aldous Huxley

This observation, as far as I can tell, is 100% accurate, and because it is, many of the problems society is facing are easily explained, if not easily resolved. For example, when was the last time you gave a thought to what else besides oxygen is in the air that you take into your lungs on the average of 15-20 times per minute.? When you last got a glass of water from the tap, did you stop to think about what was in the water you use to drink, cook with, and bathe in? As Mr. Huxley pointed out, most folks, yourselves included, seldom think about or appreciate such simple necessities, or what might happen if they were no longer available.

What will we do when the air is so full of carbon dioxide that the amount of oxygen in it is decreased below the point where it will sustain life? Will we all have to wear breathing apparatus in order to brave the outside world? What will happen to all the other animals if there isn’t sufficient air? What will you do when the water you drink is no longer safe to consume? We need water as much as we need air; our chemical make-up is 90% water, and not having enough of it to replace what we lose is a sure path to the grave within a matter of days.

There are other issues connected to this subject; the consistent degradation of our planet’s ecosystem has a great many negative effects, small and unnoticeable at first, but growing larger over time until they are added to the list of processes that will eventually lead to extinction of all of this planet’s life forms.  Part of the problem is that it is a slow, insidious process, this degradation, and the deleterious outcomes are not evident until too late to reverse.

You must remember, the Universe doesn’t care, one way or the other, whether we survive or not; the rules are the rules, and fighting against the natural laws of our space-time continuum is a fool’s bet. Like it or not, we, as a species, are going to need to make some serious changes to the way we do things, if we are to survive at all. And we will need to do it starting yesterday….

“A man’s ethical behavior should be based effectually on sympathy, education, and social ties; no religious basis is necessary.  Man would indeed be in a poor way if he had to be restrained by fear of punishment and hope of reward after death.” — Albert Einstein

I really admire Albert Einstein, and not because he was a great scientist, as well as one of history’s shining examples of men and women who greatly advance human knowledge, purely out of their love of mankind. I also admire that Albert’s wisdom was not restricted to the principles of physics and math; he had a unique way of looking at the world, spiritually, and physically, in a simplistic fashion, and had the ability to share his deep insights into life and the universe, for the benefit of others. He was an eternal optimist, and as the above quote demonstrates, had a firm grip on the concept of living with honor and dignity.

He believed in the inherent goodness of every man, living his life in a way that stands as an example for the rest of us, of how to live well. I cannot wholly agree with what he states above, because I have a much darker view of what human nature is capable of, and less faith in mankind’s willingness to submit to natural law. But what he said does show with clarity where our salvation lies, and in his own inimitable manner, he shares his deeper knowledge with the rest of us in the hope it will inspire others to act honorably….

“To laugh often and love much, to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children; to earn the appreciation of honest critics and endure the betrayal of false friends; to appreciate beauty, to find the best in others, to give of oneself; to leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child, a garden patch, or a redeemed social condition; to have played and laughed with enthusiasm and sing with exultation; to know even one life has breathed easier: this is to have succeeded.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson

From what I gather in my study of 19th century American writers, a lot of the best were what I would call masters of advanced curmudgeonry. Emerson, Walden, Thoreau,  were all libertarians living in compromise with a democracy, and spent much of their time either complaining about society, or hiding from it in their forest retreats. This is not to say that what they wrote was bad or mistaken in premise, necessarily, but if you read their work with this in mind, it becomes apparent that they didn’t much like other folks, or put much trust in their rationality.

But, as the included quote indicates, being a curmudgeon doesn’t necessarily mean they don’t understand humanity, or what it takes to make life complete. This paragraph from Mr. Emerson demonstrates this perfectly. One cannot argue with conviction that all of these attributes listed, and experiences from a long life, are positively rooted, and make perfect sense. Whether or not we actually have all of these characteristics is unimportant; the list remains valid, even if incomplete. And, it provides anyone with a good map and directions that can be useful to us in our pursuit of happiness….

So much for another day…. Hopefully, you have consumed a fair portion of food for thought, and found it palatable enough. If not, feel free to let me know, and I’ll see if I can come up with something more savory…. in the meantime, y’all take care out there….
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So much for the sanctity of the mind, eh? We’ve put the lie to that one rather well today, haven’t we? If nothing else, I’m pretty sure I felt the foundations of Reality tremble in fear for a few moments, and we can’t hope for any better than that….. See ya…..

Y’all take care out there,
and May the Metaphorse be with you;
Blessed Be, dearest  Carole, Mark, and Theresa…
and everyone else, too…

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,
and sometimes
I just sits.

gigoid

dozer3

How many asparagus spears can we salvage for cloning?….

Ffolkes,

Ah, good morning…. You may want to consider coming back later, or, if that isn’t doable, then, it’s probably best if you DUCK!!!…. Whew! Close one…. So, how’s it going this fine, beautiful morning…. Huh? What was that? Oh, nothing important, not to worry. We’re testing out some drones for the CIA, for use in the upcoming revolution…. Why, you might ask, am I helping the CIA perfect weapons for use on our own citizens? Well, there’s quite a story behind that, so, take a seat, and I’ll tell you….

It’s like this, you see…. I was approached by an agent from Langley, the CIA HQ, with a proposition that I figured might be one to take, for a number of valid reasons… First, you need to realize that my helping them is a sham…. I’m actually undercover for those self-same forces of the revolution, gathering information to be used when it all breaks loose here in the next few years. It’s just a matter of keeping my enemies closer than my friends, so that I know what they’re up to behind all those closed doors and high walls…. metaphorical as those may be. I’m sure that is exactly what they are doing by hiring me, so, turnabout is fair play….

Second, its’ fun! Playing with all these neat toys the government gets to play with, all months before the technology is filtered down to the public, where watered down versions of what the BRC has to use are sold to amuse those in the public venue who like toys, and to make the public believe the state of the technology is less than it actually is…. What? You thought they’d give up the edge by giving us the same level of developed technology as THEY have? Think again, ffolkes, the public only sees the prototypes, not the finished versions… For example, I see how the Army now has functioning laser weapons that can target and destroy planes in flight…. How many of those do you think they’ll be allowing the public to have, eh?….

Okay, fantasy done…. I don’t feel much like carrying that any further; it was already too cumbersome to do much more with…. Those three paragraphs, I can tell, are going to need some serious punching up to get them right…. It’s a good concept, but clumsily started, so I’ll have to figure out how to clean it up for consumption…. I like the concept, but my execution wasn’t spot on…. I think the victim is dead…. I’m going to have to resort to one of the emergency methods for getting out of this intro, because this is starting to feel somewhat sticky, & hard to get off my fingers….

Okay, that sinks it…. Now, my carpal tunnel is chiming in, to let me know it doesn’t want to type right now, at least not as much as other parts of me want to keep at it….. I HATE internal struggles, they’re so…… ARRRGH!!!! Fuck, fuck, fuck…. Sorry, but, sometimes, vulgarity is the only thing that works to ease the pain, or end the frustration…. That’s it, I’m done….. Immediate deployment, method #4, on 3…. One…. two….. three….

Shall we Pearl?….

“What about these commandments then?”
“You again?  All right…  There shall be TWO commandments, and this shall be the first of them: “Keep the noise down.”
“Just that?  `Keep the noise down’?”
“You got it.”
“Hmmm.  And the second of Your commandments, Lord?”
“Do what thou wilst,” (sayeth the Lord), “just go away and don’t bother Me now.  For behold, some of Us are trying to get some sleep around here.”

– Seven Deadly Sins

(I dunno…. it works for me….. If one MUST put up with a deity, one who likes His naps would be a good one…. Just sayin’…..)
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In terms of routine, I’m a dead man walking, and I’m not interested today in any false heroism or pride; I’m going to cheat all I can to get this done in a timely manner, and the hell with my integrity as an author…. Considering some of what I’ve foisted upon an unsuspecting public, I should probably be the most like candidate for the next public hanging, or, perhaps, a bit of time in the pillory, metaphorically speaking….

Regardless of all that, or whatever other silly crap I can come up with, the following is an excellent rant…. a politirant, but, with plenty of vituperation to go around, in case the PHs, SCMs, or the IMs feel like they’re missing out….. As I sat in the morning air after this section, it occurred to me that, though this rant was written almost exactly six months ago, every word in it is still valid, as related to the issues under discussion…. Not a lot of progress in that time, was there?….. Ah, well, life goes on….. Enjoy…..

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From March 7, 2013:

“It is useless for sheep to pass resolutions in favor of vegetarianism while wolves remain of a different opinion.” — William Ralph Inge, D. D.  1860 – 1954

I’ve seen this little statement before, and like it a lot, for its honesty in describing our Beloved Ruling Class in relation to the flock of sheep that comprises most of mankind. And, yes, this is the beginning of another politirant…. This one is prompted by the most recent activities that our leaders, if such word applies, have been shown to be engaged in by the news outlets I watch…. to wit: the legislation under review and up for vote in the House of Reps that is concerned with the economy, to wit: the “sequester”, and the recent comments by the POTUS re: global warming and climate change…. Let’s see what we can note about these issues, shall we?….

I have noticed that the Congress, and the POTUS, are currently at odds, as usual, over the economy, and arguing over how to address an issue over which they have absolutely no control…. I just don’t get it, actually…. There is no evidence whatsoever that anything the government does, or has ever done, about the economy has any effect at all on it…. none.

Zero. Zilch. Nada damn thing…. The economy of the world, or even just this nation, is not subject to any manipulation by us; it’s too big, too amorphous…. It’s like trying to herd cats…. a lot of effort for small results, and you end up with a bunch of pissed off felines…. If you know anything about cats, you will realize that this is never a good thing….

Yet, because the public demands that something be done, the politicians start their idiotic posturing, pontificating, and, otherwise polluting the airwaves with nonsensical suggestions as to what should be done to fix the problems. NONE of those ever work, nor will they ever work; the economy does not move according to any rules that we can control, or even know, and any action we take is just as liable to have a bad effect as a good one…. But, the public wants the government to fix it, so the politicos in the BRC make noises as if they actually could do something helpful, when in fact, anything they do is as liable to hurt, as it is to help…. Sad, but, true as the day is long.

It’s actually kind of fun watching the contortions they go through for issues such as this; since I know for a fact that none of it will have any real effect on the issue, I can enjoy the parade without worrying about whether it will actually do anything useful, or cause any harm…. It is a bit depressing to watch, since I am aware of just how little can be done, but, the show can be entertaining, and it does pass the time….

The most depressing part is knowing that the public is actually buying all of what they are saying, and really do expect something to change for the better…. But, then, I am always amazed at the depth of human stupidity. I don’t know why, as I KNOW how dumb people can be…. I am one, you know…. but, it always is a surprise to see just how deeply that stupidity is ingrained in the human condition….

Of course, this stupidity is part and parcel of why we are experiencing the second issue I mentioned above…. global warming and overpopulation. I will be very interested to see exactly how the POTUS intends to address the issue, as he has promised to do, several times now since his inauguration. Since the issue is well advanced beyond the point that most people think it is, what he does, or proposes to do, will be a telling factor in deciding how seriously the issue is being taken, and whether or not it will have any chance at all of being either enough to help, or soon enough to make a difference…. Both of these are critical factors, as the point of no-return for the ecological balance of this planet is so near, it may have already been passed some months, or years, ago….

I’m not sure how scientifically minded many of y’all are, but, I am…. scientifically minded, that is, and I can tell you without fear of contradiction (from anyone with any reliable scientific knowledge, anyway….) that the atmosphere of this planet is, without doubt, and without evidence to the contrary, on the very edge of becoming unbreathable for humans….

The millions of tons of carbon monoxide, and other toxic substances, that are being pumped into the air EVERY SECOND, and that has been pumped in now for over a hundred years, has reached the point where it will begin a process of leaching oxygen from the air, and the balance of gases we need to survive will change…. Hell, it IS changing, and fairly rapidly…. It will continue to do so, ever more swiftly, until it is no longer of a balance that we can safely breathe; moreover, once begun, the process is irreversible. The process is beyond our capability of stopping…. This is scientific FACT, not speculation, not a guess….. The process has already begun, the only question remaining is, how quickly will it happen?

“In the game of life you get to choose where you keep your brain – heads you win, tails you lose.” — Smart Bee

So, we’ll see where the POTUS keeps his brain, as he speaks in the next few days about this issue…. Whatever he decides to do, I would be willing to bet that it won’t be enough, and it won’t make a damn bit of difference, other than in a few Presidential approval polls, perhaps. After all, even though he is a fairly reform-oriented politician, he is still a politician, and you can lay good money, without fear of losing, on the fact that whatever he does is designed to benefit him and his Presidency, and any benefit for the public is a secondary concern….

He IS a politician, after all, and his primary concern is for his own success; it’s NOT the welfare of the people…. He has merely discovered that being the “People’s Champion” is currently a good political stance to take…. If it ever becomes too itchy a coat to wear, he will take it off in a heartbeat…. Count on it…. You don’t get to that level of the game without being a complete asshole in some respects, and I don’t think anyone who WANTS to be President can be accused of not being ambitious, and, in the process, they brand themselves as sociopathic….

“No people in the world ever did achieve their freedom by goody-goody talk and moral suasion: it being immutable law that all revolutions that will succeed, must begin in blood, whatever the answer afterward. If history teaches anything, it teaches that.” — Mark Twain, A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court (1889)

In this case, we aren’t talking about freedom, unless by that, one means the freedom to stay alive…. and the BRC isn’t going to do anything about it, I don’t believe…. Or, rather, I’ll believe it when I see it, and, so far, no dice in that respect. I’m enough of a cynic to believe, sadly, that it isn’t GOING to happen, either…. because I don’t believe that the POTUS, or the rest of the BRC, gives a damn about the rest of us, as long as they have their own…. This much is obvious from history, but, when did mankind at large ever pay any attention to history?….

If you have some evidence that contradicts that belief, I would dearly love to see it…. Truly, I would, because, quite frankly, my own intelligence, and the evidence I have now, forces me to conclude that we humans are shortly about to come to a bad end…. not with a bang, not with a whimper, but, choking to death in our own planet’s toxic air, victims to our own stupidity, and cupidity….

Daniel: “We’re damned if we do, we’re damned if we don’t; we need other options….” — from Stargate
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Since I’m cheating already, there is no point in making anyone else feel at all guilty by association, so, here is a poem of my own, from September of 2012, which, apparently, was not a bad year for poetry…

Visible life

Forty-two days of pressure and internal rain,
leave marks of salvation, often in pain.
Such sharp reminders of yesterday’s remorse
fight heavily to keep a straight course.
Rash moments, bright, and routinely immense
Give us pleasure, bereft of common sense.

Still the night comes soft and eternally dear
to bring out wishful dreams so vitally clear.
Life’s myrmidons give freely in protest
lifting with skill, soul pieces first to infest,
Loudly brash, with no such voices to remain
Sealed in infamy, branded ugliness all too plain.

Now come brave signs of chapter and verse
Shielded by ignorance, irritable and terse.
Gravid portions of in-between retaliation
leave only pale marks of initial gestation
With hope even pallid warriors grow brave
Leading all humanity, to a warm, stale grave.

Hope never falters, nor leaves any trace
Yet lingers forever in a welcoming space.
Cheerful faces yet shine out of time
for tricking and fumbling sweet melody sublime.
Fill in the spaces with a long, strong retort
life is ever visible, if only as last resort.

~~ gigoid ~~

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A couple of the following quotes were found prior to the collection of the remainder, because I found them at different times, in different places, and intended to use them for a couple of rants…. Since that is off the agenda for today, due to circumstances I have no desire to alter, even if possible, I’m including them as part of what I call an indictment pearl, one that takes as many hard shots at the BRC, et al, as I can fit into a short, five-star volley…. Let’s see if SB will cooperate today….

“Make no laws whatever concerning speech and, speech will be free; so soon as you make a declaration on paper that speech shall be free, you will have a hundred lawyers proving that “freedom does not mean abuse, nor liberty license;” and they will define and define freedom out of existence.” — Voltarine de Cleyre (1866-1912)

“I think our governments will remain virtuous for many centuries; as long as they are chiefly agricultural; and this will be as long as there shall be vacant lands in any part of America. When they get piled upon one another in large cities, as in Europe, they will become corrupt as in Europe.” –  Thomas Jefferson

“I see in the near future a crisis approaching that unnerves me and causes me to tremble for the safety of my country…. Corporations have been enthroned, an era of corruption in high places will follow, and the money-power of the country will endeavor to prolong its reign by working upon the prejudices of the people until the wealth is aggregated in a few hands and the Republic is destroyed.  — Former US President Abraham Lincoln, Nov. 21, 1864 — letter to Col. William F. Elkins — printed in “The Lincoln Encyclopedia”, — ed. Archer H. Shaw, Macmillan, 1950, NY

“He that would make his own liberty secure must guard even his enemy from oppression; for if he violates this duty he establishes a precedent that will reach to himself.” — Thomas Paine

“The belief in a supernatural source of evil is not necessary; men alone are quite capable of every wickedness.” — Joseph Conrad, “Under Western Eyes”

“An experienced, industrious, ambitious, and often quite often picturesque liar.” — Mark Twain

Well, aside from Smart Bee pulling its covers, showing us it doesn’t know how to count, that came out well…. Maybe it needs one more….

“If we were to promise people nothing better than only revolution, they would scratch their heads and say: “Is it not better to have good goulash?” — Nikita Khruschev, quoted 1971

I love it when a plan comes together, even if the formatting has gone wonky….
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For reasons unbeknownst to me, the formatting above decided to fuss with me, changing stuff without warning or purpose…. Since I don’t feel like tracking down the cause just now, it will have to do the way it is, and I’ll fix it on the fly, as it were…. Aha! Found it… Well, not exactly, but, the copy and paste process seems to have eliminated the wonkiness…. Okay, not bad, but, I still feel as if I’m in a panic, or should be…. I kind of feel like this man felt, back in the day…..

“I drank WHAT???????” — Socrates (470?-399 B.C.)

Ah well, we can only do our best…. or, as gigoid has so aptly put it, many times and many ways, in the recent, as well as the far-distant past, “All we can do, is all we can do….”  On that note, I shall bid thee adieu for another day….

Y’all take care out there,
and May the Metaphorse be with you;
Blessed Be, dearest  Carole, Mark, and Theresa…
and everyone else, too…

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,
and sometimes
I just sits.

gigoid

dozer3

Improbably imbued with ponderous value….

Ffolkes,

Vague flutters, as tiny wings not seen, but heard on the very edge of awareness, fall obscurely upon the dark shadows, soullessly inhabiting these empty halls. A terrible, heavy silence grips the night by the throat, quelling any thought of outcry, any hope of warning, as minute by minute, the hour of fate approaches unbidden, unwanted, unknown…. Baleful denizens of darkness cower, shivering in the cold of a terror so great, so powerfully evil, all hope died, screaming, before it was ever born…..

Then, of course, I woke up, and all was well…. or, as well as things can be, all things considered…. At least we’re not in the evil grip of some kind of Steven King-like novel, like the poor sap in the first paragraph, eh? I’d hate to go there every day, even if only in my head…. Having been blessed once more by 10 solid hours of sleep, I feel GREAT! Well, I feel pretty good, anyway; I don’t think I’ll be climbing any mountains anytime soon, but, I may be able to make it past 2 PM without a nap, if I’m lucky, so, that’s a good thing, right? Right….

In the last week, other than two trips out of the house to take care of some business out in  the BBR, we’ve been stuck in the house ever since getting back from the cruise from hell, me with bronchitis, and my lady with a cold she managed to pick up inadvertently upon arriving home…. For the past five days, we have been alternating sitting, taking meds, and sleeping, pretty much, with some minor writing on my part in the early mornings, while my brain is actually functioning at a relatively normal level…. Part of what has kept us in the house, aside from illness, is the weather here in California, which has been reminiscent of Alaska in the early winter…. seriously…

It has been well below freezing point for five nights running, with temps here last night down to 21 degrees F…. For a town right on the water of a bay, on the Pacific Ocean, at around the 37th parallel, that is COLD!…. Especially here in this part of the state, where ‘mild’ is the word we use most often to describe our weather patterns…. This year, 2013, the area has had approximately five to six inches of rain, with only twenty-one days left in the year,  whereas, the annual average is close to 24 inches…. But, there’s no such thing as global warming, so, hey, not to worry, eh?….

Okay, that’s enough… Some fictional musings, some personal patter, a bit of weather, a mini-mini-environmental rant…. It will suffice for our purposes here….  I think we’re good to go for a dive… If things turn out to make that an erroneous decision, well, hey, we’ve been wrong before, haven’t we? Yes, yes, we have….

Shall we Pearl?…..

That ‘s the wise thrush; he sings each song twice over,
Lest you should think he never could recapture
The first fine careless rapture.

– Robert Browning (1812-1890) — Home-Thoughts from Abroad, ii
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“Whenever, therefore, the profession of arms becomes a distinct order in the state….the end of the social compact is defeated… No free government was ever founded, or ever preserved its liberty without uniting the characters of the citizen and soldier in those destined for the defense of the state…Such are a well regulated militia, composed of the freeholders, citizen and husbandman, who take up arms to preserve their property, as individuals, and their rights as freemen.” — Richard Henry Lee

I mentioned a few days ago that I’d found a good quote for the beginning of a rant, and I was right, wasn’t I?….. Specifically, for a politirant, concerning gun control, and the misguided attempts to alter the Second Amendment to the US Constitution, if not wholly, at least by abridging its intent. This, I believe, is a HUGE mistake, even though it was fully expected by those who first made the law, to wit: Jefferson, Franklin, Mason, Paine, Hamilton, etc…. our founding fathers, in short. All of them believed very strongly that this amendment was the very backbone of what made our freedoms possible, and were leery of ANY changes to this law….

“Liberty cannot be guaranteed by law. Nor by any thing else except the resolution of free citizens to defend their liberties.” — Edward Abbey

Those fears were expressed, verbally and in writing, many times, before and after the Constitution’s approval, and all the available evidence shows how little these men trusted the monied, or titled, elite in society… More than once, in correspondence with each other, they discussed their mistrust, of the bankers, the corporations, the aristocrats, the professional politicians, the professional soldiers, and all who support those categories of society. They knew that, as soon as the laws were passed, these special influences would begin using their money, and their influence, to try to abrogate the intent of the laws, limiting them, altering them until they no longer were capable of protecting our rights….

“Freedom isn’t cheap and it never goes on sale.” — Smart Bee

That assault on the Bill of Rights, especially those of the First and Second Amendments, has been continuous since 1786, as can be seen by the Congressional logs of bills that were brought forth at one time or another throughout our history, bills attempting to limit the power of the amendments; some were successful, some were not….. and the assault is not over; it continues to this day, as the special interest groups all clamor to fill the public’s attention with unreasoning fears, by making a huge hullabaloo over EVERY shooting that occurs in this country….

Well, as long as it suits them, of course…. They don’t make a big deal out of one of their police or paramilitary types blowing away some ‘perp’, (…. kind of a demeaning term, don’t you think?…. As well as prejudicial… A ‘perpetrator’ is one who is considered guilty of an act, by connotation, if not denotation….), who is robbing a store because he needs food, or drugs…. Even the shooting of some little kid playing with a toy gun brings no particular outrage from the governors, or even the media, in response to that lack…. No, those types of shootings get little attention past the first report; the only investigations into THOSE incidents are internal, and never find any blame, or file any charges….

No, it is the incidents where some crazy asshole, most likely some private citizen with a long time internal struggle to be normal, gets hold of a gun, goes to some public area, and proceeds to blow away a bunch of other innocents…. These events, relatively isolated in comparison with other types of shootings, of any kind, are the incidents that are brought into the limelight, so that every detail of the agony of the victims is expressed, fanning the public’s outrage, making them afraid for their own safety…. This makes them much more malleable when the talking heads propose their newest limits to the guns that the people can have…. Don’t worry, they’ll get them all, it will just take them more time…

As I’ve stated before, I’m a warrior, raised by a man of honor, and have studied the Art of War, (both the book by Sun Tzu, and the actual Art itself….), for almost my entire life…. and though I don’t, as a rule, use guns (They’re too loud, too complicated to maintain in the field, & hard to use with stealth…. heavy, too….. Knives, and sticks, of many shapes, are quieter, simple to use, & much easier to conceal…. Ropes are pretty useful, too….), I do know how to use them….

If I should ever need one, why, then, I’ll acquire one, from someone who has more than they need, to use as I so require. Then I’ll put it away again, or give it back to the owner, if that individual happened to loan it to me…. If the gun I end up using was pointed at me, well, they won’t be needing it back, anyway….. So far in life, I’ve been smart enough to avoid the necessity of dealing with that, and have had no need for one, so, I’m content with that, for the time being….

But, no matter what the talking heads may do, or say, or how they may change the laws, our founding fathers already GAVE me the rights I have, and I won’t be giving them up, no matter how many legal sounding words they may send through their lips…. It will all be just noise, as far as I am concerned…. There is no rationalization that is, to my mind, conceivable, that could persuade me to give up those rights, because I’ve already heard them all…. After all, in addition to my book/day from 1961 onward, I HAVE been watching TV since the early 1950′s, (I remember the Republican convention in 1954 that nominated Eisenhower, watching it on a small B&W console TV…. “I LIKE IKE!”….), so, I’ve seen or heard just about every political lie there is to perceive…. They just recycle the same old BS every time, anyway….

I’m tired of ranting about this, because, to me, it’s already a settled issue in my mind…. so, let’s see if I can find some pearls to lighten up the tone, and still deliver a few shots to the midsection of the pundits and preachers out there, who deserve as many shots as we can give them….

“War is a matter of vital importance to the State; the province of life or death; the road to survival or ruin. It is mandatory that it be thoroughly studied.” — Sun Tzu

(Which is why I sincerely urge each and every one of you to PAY ATTENTION!….)

“The devil can quote Shakespeare for his own purpose.” — George Bernard Shaw

(And, too often, does so, right on TV, wearing a dark blue suit with a power red tie and a flag pin….)

“The state is the great fictitious entity by which everyone expects to live at the expense of everyone else.” — Frederic Bastiat

“To use power is to make yourself infinitely vulnerable to greater powers.” — Bene Gesserit

“A promise must never be broken.” — Alexander Hamilton

(Wait! How did THAT get in here?…. Oh, okay, it’s alright, he’s not a pundit, just a founding father…. If a bit of a prude in some ways…. Smart, but a bit anal, y’know?….)

“The Bill of Rights goes too far–it should have stopped at “Congress shall make no law” — Smart Bee

“The man who finds a truth lights a torch.” — Robert G. Ingersoll, _The Truth_

“In the midst of this sublime and terrible storm [at Sidmouth], Dame Partington, who lived upon the beach, was seen at the door of her house with mop and pattens, trundling her mop, squeezing out the sea-water, and vigorously pushing away the Atlantic Ocean. The Atlantic was roused; Mrs. Partington’s spirit was up. But I need not tell you that the contest was unequal; the Atlantic Ocean beat Mrs. Partington.” — Sydney Smith (1769-1845) — Speech at Taunton, 1813
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I like this, not merely because it is beautiful in its execution, but for what it says, as well…. Exquisitely romantic, and powerfully emotional, it is indeed what I consider the BEST kind of poetry…. to wit: it affects the reader, engaging and enlightening at once…. Enjoy!

Sonnet 14 – If thou must love me, let it be for nought

XIV

If thou must love me, let it be for nought
Except for love’s sake only. Do not say
‘I love her for her smile — her look — her way
Of speaking gently, — for a trick of thought
That falls in well with mine, and certes brought
A sense of pleasant ease on such a day’—
For these things in themselves, Beloved, may
Be changed, or change for thee,— and love, so wrought,
May be unwrought so. Neither love me for
Thine own dear pity’s wiping my cheeks dry,—
A creature might forget to weep, who bore
Thy comfort long, and lose thy love thereby!
But love me for love’s sake, that evermore
Thou mayst love on, through love’s eternity.

~~ Elizabeth Barrett Browning ~~

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“One of the most difficult of the philosopher’s tasks is to find out where the shoe pinches.” — Ludwig Wittgenstein

But, other times, the fools make it easy to show just where the pinch is biting…. such as when this fool opens his mouth…. You MUST read this, please… I know it is a hard one to believe, but, it was reported with a straight face by the news outlet, just as if it were real news, so we owe it the respect of doing the same, no matter how egregiously insane it may be…..

http://blog.sfgate.com/nov05election/2013/12/07/santorum-mandelas-fight-for-freedom-like-the-fight-against-obamacare/

Can you believe the sheer, blind selfishness of this man? No matter what his issues, he was asked to comment on the life of someone who died, and regardless of his own position, he could not put aside his own personal foibles long enough to make a statement of compassion for the family, or the loss to the world…. No, he attempted to equate the works of one of the last century’s most well-loved, and universally respected figures, trying to turn the moment to his own political advantage, with possibly the weakest, most illogical, most ill-informed argument I have heard outside a second-grade classroom, when the teacher asked the little boy why he ate his neighbor’s cookie….

“People become educated, as against trained, insofar as they achieve a grasp of certain critical principles, and the passion to choose, organize and shape their own ideas by means of them. Education is not a mere piling up of more and more bits and pieces of information. It is a process of deciding for ourselves what we believe. It implies a self-motivated action upon our own mental nature and a process in which we learn to open our mind, to correct and refine it, to enable it rationally to learn; thus to empower it to analyze and digest its own knowledge, to gain command over its own faculties, to achieve flexibility, fair-mindedness, and critical exactness. More and more students should have assignments that challenge their minds to think for themselves.

This requires, of course, that they are encouraged to question what is presented to them for belief, not only in the various subject areas, but on TV programs and movies, in news broadcasts, in the talk of their peers and others, in political speeches and personal discussions, in everyday decisions and ways of living. And they should do this not to discover that everything is relative and arbitrary or a matter of opinion, but that all beliefs and points of view are subject to rational analysis and assessment. Ideally the process will come to pervade the school climate and be reflected in the deepest structures of school life. By this means, schools can perhaps become, as they should be, leading institutions in society, paradigms of rationality, helping an irrational society to become what itself has said is its own highest goal: a free society of free and autonomous persons.” — Richard Paul

Rick Santorum is a perfect example of the kind of first type of education described in this quote, with a lot of well-memorized factoids running around in his head, which he is able to regurgitate in various formats on demand, all without ever having to apply a single moment’s actual thought, or use them to reason with for any purpose…. When one reasons, one might come up with a conclusion, which is a risk for a pundit….. He is a well-programmed autobot for the Republican right, which, for me, is a continual delight, as he also has an almost Romney-esque ability to keep his foot planted firmly between his teeth for long periods of time, and still talk around it…. This was a perfect example of that skill, along with a display of callous ignorance and lack of compassion that is merely astounding, rather than particularly surprising.

In a way, though, he is also a frightening phenomenon, for there are actually people in this country who take what he says as gospel, who dote on his unpopular opinions, mostly because they tend to fall into misogynistic, racist, bigoted, fundamentalist Christian guidelines,…. a group of characteristics, you will note, that purportedly have NOTHING to do with government, other than as things to fight against inclusion in that process…. Yet, there he is, the darling of the fascistic fundies, just like that hive of bees in my head that, in spite of telling them of all the flowers that are in other locations, remains ensconced in the eaves under the roof of my mind…. and, well, there they are, so what do I do with them?….

“Annoy a Fundamentalist: Tell him the truth!” — Smart Bee

Hmm, that’s good advice…. To get back to Rick’s case, at least there are times like this one, when he provides me with at least a few moments of hilarity, at the breadth and depth of his stupidity, until, saddened by the same sheer ignorance in one in a position to do so much harm, I become depressed again, when I think of how many idiots are out there taking him seriously….. SIGH….. That thought is SO depressing, I’m going to quit this rant, and go find something fun to do, just so I don’t have to think about him any more….. Wish me luck, and I’ll wish it back at ya…. And remember, ffolkes, I may not be right, but I make up for it by being sure…..

“For the love of God, folks, don’t do this at home.” — David Letterman, CBS Late Show, demonstrating the Donut-o-pult, 1995
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I’m not entirely certain just how it happened, but, I think I’ve done it…. Let’s go see…. Well…. I’m still not sure, but, now, at least, I know it did happen, so…. I guess I’m outta here for today…. See ya….

Y’all take care out there,
and May the Metaphorse be with you;
Blessed Be, dearest  Carole, Mark, and Theresa…
and everyone else, too…

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,
and sometimes
I just sits.

gigoid

dozer3

Skeptical images go in the bluest bin…. (Spoiler: 94% fresh material…)

Ffolkes,

I’m often amazed at how much the world can change in one day; never has that been more clearly defined for me than in the past 24 hours, when I took the time to compare that day to the 24 hours that preceded…. The difference, in how I feel, in how I view the world, in the world itself, all are in direct contrast to each other, and serve to send my mind into the realms of thought and introspection…. which is a good thing, mostly, if a bit strange for the average bear…. I’ve never been a particularly average bear, though, so, no worries, eh?….

My condition, both physical and mental, over the last few days was complicated by a certain policy decision I’d made, which, in the light of subsequent events, became, quite obviously, the wrong policy to adopt at this particular time, if ever. Since returning the policy to its former state, all seems to be well, in many respects that were NOT doing well….

This tells me that reinstating the policy was the correct decision, so, once again, that’s a good thing, even if all this is so obscure that even I am not sure what the hell I’m talking about…. But, that’s okay, it’s not really important for any other purpose than my own inner serenity, which is always a bit wobbly, so, we’ll just keep it that way, and let things settle into their most propitious alignments without further interference from me….

Now, wasn’t THAT fun! I could possibly have made that even more obdurately obscure, but, what’s the point in that? I can barely follow it myself, so even the NSA will have trouble figuring out what I’m talking about, even with ALL my meta-data to work with…. They’re missing the key encryption factor, which is located deep within the confines of my brain, in places of which even I am not fully cognizant; I keep it there on purpose, so I can’t tell them if I ever get caught….

Okay, so I’m no James Bond…. I can pretend, can’t I?….. Besides, I’m no real threat, (yet…), to them, other than by what I may write, and that has, thus far, been fairly mild, in terms of actual, practical revolutionary content…. I have yet to actually BUY a gun, (yet…), and haven’t started meeting up with like-minded radicals from other places around the country, (yet…). Nor have I started a newsletter, or published a paper, or any of the other organizational activities one might suspect if I chose to pursue such a course…. (yet…..)

I’ve thought about all of them, and may, someday relatively soon, go about following up on one or more of those impulses; it’s about damn time for some changes in this sad old world, that’s for sure….

But, not yet…. not quite yet….. I’m not convinced at this point as to how many others out there would consider joining with me in such activity, though I suspect there are many more than the BRC would believe…. Plus, when the time actually comes for me to do something practical, do they actually think that I’m stupid enough to tell them about it first? I guess they are, so, we’ll just let them go on believing that, and get on with what we’re doing…. which, at this point should probably involve some diving for pearls…. otherwise, we many never get out of here, and I know I’m low on snack items…. so…..

Shall we Pearl?…..

“Between the vision and the act lies the shadow.” — T. S. Eliot (1888-1965)
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‘Kay…. I’m submitting to the will of Fate, such as it presents itself, as we all must when it does…. Oh, we all like to come up with high sounding rationalizations why our fate is in our own hands, or, we like to pretend it is subject to adjustment, if we hold to a certain set of beliefs, that protect us from its vagaries, but, when it all comes down to the final analysis, we will ALWAYS do what we do, and the WHY has NO BEARING on what will occur…. 

What will be, will be…. This is something that most people have a hard time coming to accept, myself included….. I’ve discovered, over the years, it is often best to go with the odds, so…. in order to honor the concept of “always cut the cards”, I’d like to talk a bit about the process of getting old…..

“Yep, getting old just plain sux.” — lobotero ( http://lobotero.com/ )

This quote was left as a comment for me on a recent post, wherein I was once again discussing my health, and mentioned that feeling poorly was “getting old”…. My new friend, lobotero, agreed with the sentiment, as he, I know, lives with his own difficult health issues…. But, when he said that, I was struck by the simple fact that, although it is true, as true as the sun coming up each day, it only describes half of the universe in which we live, the living half,  and it’s only because we are suffering that the other half, the dying, is so hard to acknowledge…..

“I’d rather die happy than not die at all….” — Bob Weir

Yeah, I’m hating big parts of this getting old shit, most of which is due to the fact that none of it was in the damn manual…. Of course, there was no manual, but, you know what I mean…. When we’re growing up, do the adults tell us, “don’t worry, you’ll be in pain soon, too, dear….”?… No, of course not… It’s all, “Oh, go play, dear, have fun. Use your mind, and your body, just be safe!”, or some such happy shit, never giving a clue, until later in life, that we all should have begun practicing some years ago at those things that will help us later in life…. SIGH… If I didn’t know better, I’d think it was a conspiracy…..

But, I know better than to attribute to malevolence anything that is more likely the result of asininity, or just plain stupidity….. We’re all not the brightest creatures on the platter, you know…. Why else would we still be stuck hanging around some backwater planet like this? There HAS to be somewhere more civilized to go, if only to find an adequate cup of ambrosia….. Logic says there MUST be…. As I am, sadly, no smarter than the rest of the monkeys stuck here, I suppose that means I have to try again to get along with the inhabitants, at least for long enough to get through another incarnation….

I must be feeling a little bit better, as this is the most coherent bit of cogitation I’ve managed for a week or more, as well as the most light-hearted…. I miss my sense of humor when it’s hiding behind the outrage, or the pain, or whatever it finds to stay out of the limelight…. But, one mustn’t spook the muses, now, so, shhh, we won’t talk of it any more just now…. Where was I?

Oh, yes, I was getting old, and, mostly liking it…. I guess that is the thrust of what I’m trying to say here….. I’ve had a HELL of a good time in my life, having managed to do just about all I wanted to do at one time or another, along with, of course, quite a few things I didn’t want to do so much…. But, all of them have taught me something, so, I figure I’m ahead of the game in that respect…. Plus, I just remembered why I MUST be feeling better, and why it’s so…..

When one is using one’s MIND (caps deliberate, to denote I’m really serious here….), when it is fully engaged in doing the work at which it excels, it actually has healing, and recuperative powers, in respect to the rest of the body…. This idea is a commonly held belief in many spiritual circles, and there is medical evidence to support it, as well, so I’m not just talking through my ass (though that has been known to occur…. but, not now….)… Any who, when one is thinking hard, and concentrating, the body has actually been measured, with results that indicate it does not merely STOP AGING, but, in point of fact, will repair some of the damage time wreaks, making us younger…..

For some time now, perhaps an hour or so, I’ve been thinking about what my friend said, above, and the echoes of the thoughts are still reverberating around in my head, stimulating other ideas, bouncing around. colliding with other ideas like a nuclear reaction in full swing, and, in essence, creating conditions in my body that are helping me to get better….. Until, of course, the actual illness itself steps in, to let me know it’s not quite gone… S’cuse me…. break time…. I hope to be right back….

So much for the wishes of a man in the face of fate, or Fate, or even destiny…. To continue…. in that hour that I’ve spent in thinking about how it sux to get old, I have felt better than I have for over a week, and certainly the best I’ve felt since becoming ill, several weeks ago, when I caught a cold for the first time in decades…. But, a full hour of the mind at work, and much of the damage has been, if not eliminated fully, mitigated to a significant degree; you can’t complain about a deal like that, now, can you?…..

So, yes, getting old sux, big time, a lot of the time…. Fortunately, that’s not the end of the story for us humans….. Myself, I have always enjoyed the process of learning, which just so happens to occur at a regular rate as we grow older (as long as we are paying attention….), and wouldn’t trade a single grey hair for those darker tendrils that adorned my head as a youth….. They still grow, grey as they are, a fact that, to me, indicates how things actually are, if we know how to perceive them….

As I’ve grown older, I’ve learned something new with each passing hour; the things I’ve learned make my life much fuller, filled with the feelings and experiences that I enjoy, such as the anticipation and excitement of traveling, or the profound joy of meeting new people, and I don’t believe I’d care to go back to being young, because the trade-off wouldn’t be a fair bargain, for me, or for the world….

I’ll just take things the way they are, and do the best I can to learn to enjoy even the difficult times, as being another kind of lesson….. This one taught me to find my way back to the proper attitudes for my mental and physical well-being, so, I’m content, for the nonce, even though I’m older than I was when I began…..

“You’ve little to fear, brave knight…unless the dragon stops purring.” — Smart Bee
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At times, all I want is a simple poem, that speaks directly to the truth of life…. Oh, look, here’s one now!…..

A Bottle And Friend

There’s nane that’s blest of human kind,
But the cheerful and the gay, man,
Fal, la, la, &c.

Here’s a bottle and an honest friend!
What wad ye wish for mair, man?
Wha kens, before his life may end,
What his share may be o’ care, man?

Then catch the moments as they fly,
And use them as ye ought, man:
Believe me, happiness is shy,
And comes not aye when sought, man.

~~ Robert Burns ~~

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As I was searching the other day, looking for pearls for an old-school pearl I was putting together, a group of another type kept popping up in SB, obviously trying to get me to include them in a post…. I put them aside for the moment, but now will complete the group, and include them here, so they will stop whimpering at me…. Actually, this is looking like it will be a pretty good one….

“People are divided into two groups – the righteous and the unrighteous – and the righteous do the dividing.” — Lord Cohen

EVANGELIST, n.  A bearer of good tidings, particularly (in a religious sense) such as assure us of our own salvation and the damnation of our neighbors. — Ambrose Bierce, “The Devil’s Dictionary”

“At the beginning there was the Word – at the end just the Cliche.” — Stanislaw J. Lec

“Any system of religion which has anything in it which offends the mind of a child cannot be a true system.” — Thomas Paine

“Great spirits have always found violent opposition from mediocrities. The latter cannot understand it when a man does not thoughtlessly submit to hereditary prejudices but honestly and courageously uses his intelligence.” — Albert Einstein

“All men are born naked.” — Carlos Eduardo Novaes

“If attacked by a lion thrust your arm down his throat. This takes some practice.” — Cyril Connolly

For those who have been reading this blog for a while, you may understand why I recognize this to be one of the finest pearls I’ve ever come up with; for those unfamiliar with how my mind works, (a group that often includes myself….), this will seem like something almost familiar, but, elusive and difficult to pin down….. For what it is worth, a key decryption tool for deciphering the meaning here would be the word, “dogma”; even more useful, the word, “poltroon”…. Of course, if you use the latter, you will need to remember to bring some Windex, or perhaps, a bit of WD-40, to the aftermath party…..
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Today is one of those special days, brimming with the possibility of epiphany, tempered by the patina of age, yet shining with the luster that comes from elegance…. Oh wait, that’s just some oatmeal on my glasses….Whoops! Oh well, I had hopes there, for a moment…. Let’s see if it lives up to any of its promises….

Well, actually, it does…. I like it, and though I’m not particularly hard to please, still, it’s pretty okay…. I know, I’m damning it with faint praise, but, it can’t be helped… If I gush, I seem too egotistical, and, it’s not THAT good…. Whatever it is, I hope y’all enjoy today’s effort, because I enjoyed writing it…. See ya…..

Y’all take care out there,
and May the Metaphorse be with you;
Blessed Be, dearest  Carole, Mark, and Theresa…
and everyone else, too…

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,
and sometimes
I just sits.

gigoid

dozer3

Bring me the brass candlesticks from aisle three….

Ffolkes,

It’s a Sunday…. It’s also another day I can pretty much write off, in terms of getting much done, as this bronchitis is still kicking both my figurative, and my literal ass. I have no energy at all, in spite of the best night’s sleep I’ve had in over a week (got almost 7 whole hours of it, with no coughing, and no needed emergency trips…. whee!….). I’ve decided to not try to push myself into writing a lot, even though I told myself I wouldn’t give in to this being sick stuff, as I have done for much of my life… When I told myself that, I wasn’t considering how old I am, or how damn sick I am, so give me a break, eh? I’m still delirious half of the time, and not too sure when I might be back to relative normalcy….. whatever THAT may mean around here….

Instead, I’m going to include some short pearls that comprised an old Pearl, a new poem I found by Emily (new to me….), and one fresh old school pearl, the type that is easiest on my head, as well as my body, as they don’t take long; plus, bonus material…. actual thinking isn’t required…. Okay, no comments about “oh, we knew THAT!”…. I’m doing my best here, and don’t need the grief….. Any who, I hope this doesn’t drive away too many ffolkes because I’m not being fresh…

I do have stuff I COULD talk about…. Those idiots in Congress are at it again, shuffling about in their ignorance and blind maliciousness, talking about undermining some diplomatic deal the POTUS accomplished with some of the insane assholes from the Middle East, where they pride themselves on how ignorantly they can live…. It’s funny how these Republican assholes (that is, as opposed to those Democratic assholes with whom they share office space…) seem to go into the most fantastic contortions of nasty, ill-tempered, ill-conceived machinations designed (in their tiny minds) to make it hard for Obama, just because it isn’t the way THEY want it done, when, in fact, it is their own image they are tarnishing, by appearing to be small minded and childish….. And they still don’t understand why they lost the election…. I also have a wonderful little quote about gun control that I’ve been saving, and the percolating that I’ve felt going on in there on this one promises to make it a doozy, or, as we like to say around here, some damn good shit….

But, I don’t have the energy for more than what you just got, so, we’re going with the plan outlined above for the day, as it is the best hope I have of coming up with anything worth reading…. at least, that’s my take on it, and, I’m driving…. So….

Shall we Pearl?….

“Well, one must get an idea someplace.” — Stephen Hawking
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I was reading one of the old Pearls that the new WP function recommended, and thought there was some pretty good stuff in it…. I was going to just re-blog it today; instead, I’m just going to include a few of the short pearls it contained…. I hope they tickle your fancy, or at least your plain….

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from 12/28/2011

Ffolkes,

Hoy, yo soy una tabula raza. Y cuando you escribo, es muy dificil.  Pero, tambien soy un brujo, y la realidad es mi amigo. Andalé! Vamanos!……. Pop!

Okay, whew! Thought I’d be stuck in Spanish all day; it’s all because last night I had a dream about my first real trip to Mexico, many years ago, when my partner-in-crime, Dusty, and I, rode the train from Mexicali to Mazatlan, a brutal 30 hour ride. We found out an important piece of information on that trip.

Mexican beer won’t get you drunk, no matter how fast you consume it.  It’s a decent way to stay hydrated, but that’s all. If not kept cool, it starts to taste somewhat like badger piss, though I’m only familiar with that on a hearsay level. Sure won’t give a buzz, though; it’s only about 1% alcohol. We forgot, it’s a Catholic country, and still rooted in the last century, minus one, in a cultural sense. Ah well, ’twas alright; we just spent the entire week with whiskey instead of beer. Jack is Jack, no matter where he travels….  Oh, I was wrong yesterday…. I didn’t lose my mind; it’s here somewhere. It’s just that, due to intense mind fog, all thoughts have been grounded.

Okay, I’m ready…. let’s rock….

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“You could say I’d lost my faith in our politicians.” — Smart Bee

But it was a small loss, considering there wasn’t much there to begin with…. I’d be willing to have a bit more faith in them, if even ONE of them would stop consistently lying to me. Note I said consistently; I’m adult enough to realize that, being what they are, they have to lie. If they could just learn to not lie EVERY time they open their mouths, we could reach some kind of compromise agreement. But they don’t seem to want, or seem not to be able, to do that, so I’ll just have to go on wallowing in my disbelief. That way, I’m not disappointed so often…. My mind ain’t so open that just anything can crawl right in.

“Washing one’s hands of the conflict between the powerful and the powerless means to side with the powerful, not to be neutral.” — Paulo Freire

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‘You can’t go home again if home is a place you’ve never been.”– Ursula K Leguin

Sad it is that too many people in our society, of all ages, know exactly what this means, from cruel experience. Society has always had its poor and homeless, and repeated explorations into the reasons for it have all been inconclusive, for they all get to the same point and lose coherent credibility. When the vagaries and complexities of human nature are brought into the equation, the sheer number of variables makes the equation unsolvable.  In other words, nobody knows for sure why society arranges itself as it does.

We just don’t know enough for certain to be able to say with any high degree of confidence, “THIS is why this is so”. Thus, any and all attempts at finding a solution to the problem have been ineffective at best. We live in a nation with more natural resources than all but a handful of countries around the world, but we still have a small but significant percentage of our population who don’t know whether they will eat today, or whether they will sleep indoors tonight. I can’t say I’m any smarter than anyone else who has looked at this issue; I don’t claim to have any magic bullets. But I can feel compassion, and I can wish….

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“If you have a particular faith or religion, that is good. But you can survive without it if you have love, compassion, and tolerance. The clear truth of a person’s love of God is if that person genuinely shows love to fellow human beings.” — Dalai Lama

Here we have some plain common sense, in the guise of eternal wisdom. I like to think that even the most dogmatic religious devotee, of any religion, would agree with this concept. (I know, that’s a stretch, even for one with my sunny disposition, always filled with optimism…. HACK!  Oops, sorry, almost choked….) It’s difficult to object when it matches so closely the most basic beliefs of almost every sect. Though proponents of each world-view may differ greatly on the shape and nature of what they worship, none would deny that love, compassion, and tolerance are lessons taught by all of them, in their study and contemplation of human nature, and its niche in the scheme of things. In every face with which God is seen by Man, one may see these three attributes written clearly on their visage. If we have any redeeming feature written on the slate of our souls, love for one’s fellow man would be that characteristic….

“[...] For all our conceits about being the center of the universe, we live in a routine planet of a humdrum star stuck away in an obscure corner [...] on an unexceptional galaxy which is one of about 100 billion galaxies. [...] That is the fundamental fact of the universe we inhabit, and it is very good for us to understand that.” — Carl Sagan
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As promised, a bit of Emily’s amazing vision, sans accoutrement…. (also, without formatting, which apparently got lost along the way here….)

A Coffin is a Small Domain

A Coffin is a small Domain,
Yet able to contain
A Citizen of Paradise
In it diminished Plane.

A Grave is a restricted Breadth
Yet ampler than the Sun
And all the Seas He populates
And Lands He looks upon

To Him who on its small Repose
Bestows a single Friend
Circumference without Relief
Or Estimate or End

~~ Emily Dickinson ~~
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Also as promised, below you will find a fresh harlequin pearl, ripped from the very bowels…. no, wait, that’s the wrong image for someone with current issues in that direction…. Let’s try again…. Here are some fine, fresh pearls, and I hope you enjoy them…. (It seemed the best thing, to keep it simple…. nobody can say I don’t have tact, eh?…. Maybe not a lick of sense, but, tact, I got….)

“Historians are like deaf people who go on answering questions that no one has asked them.” — Leo Tolstoy

Curse away!
And let me tell thee, Beausant, a wise proverb
The Arabs have,–”Curses are like young chickens,
And still come home to roost.”

– Edward Bulwer Lytton (1805-1873) — The Lady of Lyons, Act v, Sc. 2

“Remember that when you hear a horse, it might be a zebra.” — African proverb

“No law or ordinance is mightier than understanding.” — Plato, Laws

“Intelligence is the ultimate aphrodisiac” — Smart Bee

“A man’s work is nothing but this slow trek to rediscover, through the detours of art, those two or three great and simple images in whose presence his heart first opened.” — Albert Camus

“There are two kinds of people in the world, those who believe there are two kinds of people in the world and those who don’t.” — Benchley’s Law of Distinction

This MIGHT be the oddest pearl I’ve ever created, but, it’s fairly consistent, and very deep, if you give it a chance…. If it still doesn’t gel for you, just forget it, and go on to the next task in your list…. That always works for me….. Or, just break it down into its individual components; each is perfectly usable as a stand-alone proverb, or, as we call them, oysters….
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I have a feeling this Pearl may not be up to my usual standards, but, I just don’t care much at this point…. I’ll check, but, as far as I’m concerned, it’s done, and I can go back to bed now…. See you tomorrow, I hope….

Y’all take care out there,
and May the Metaphorse be with you;
Blessed Be, dearest  Carole, Mark, and Theresa…
and everyone else, too…

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,
and sometimes
I just sits.

gigoid

dozer3

Burdened by implications of impropriety….

Ffolkes,

Wow…. It’s been a LONG time since my head has been so empty in the morning….. I’m guessing it has something to do with getting an extra hour and a half of sleep, which has me up today rather later than is usual in the recent past….. Of course, my guesses are wrong as often as right, so that’s no guarantee that I’ve figured this out, or that trying to use my brain for any kind of cognitive tasks will have any positive results… In short, I’ve reached that momentous state so aptly described in the Grateful Dead song, Sugar Magnolia…. to wit: “Head’s all empty, and I don’t care….” I DO care, though, at least enough to feel some regret at my lack of alertness just now, if not any great depression, over not being able to write…. I mean, THAT is nothing new, right?….

Besides, the empty-headed state described in the song has more to do with the effect on the brain of a beautiful woman, not over-zealousness in pounding the pillow, so it doesn’t help explain anything… As is normal in these cases, I have absolutely no idea what to do about it, and intend to carry on in the usual way, as I am right now, wandering around in my head, blathering, until something, anything, I type strikes a chord, whether of humor, anger, outrage, or simply reminiscence…. SOMETHING has to pop up eventually, and when it does, I’ll be all over it, like a male dog chasing a female in heat….

Hmm, as is plain to see, I shouldn’t be allowed to make up any descriptive phrases until I have a better handle on things… I’m not sure that image is the one I was shooting for…. But, what is a daily blogger to do, eh? I ask you, is it fair to expect brilliance every day? Well, maybe it is, but, hey, not all of us can do that, okay? Some of us need to be average some days…. otherwise, those flashes of brilliance tend to get overlooked.

If I was brilliant all the time, it wouldn’t seem special when I do make some connection, or expose some nerve, or shout something out that makes people sit up and take notice. There has to be a degree of contrast, sort of like using a frame for a picture, to serve as a way to highlight what I’ve written, a dichotomy that tells the tale to be told….

Most days, I end up like today, trying to achieve perfect piffle, which, to me, is great fun, and funny, and, in some ways, the most honest way to start off these missives… Nothing else conveys the sense of nonsense that we try to achieve here, that sharp, sardonic wit and intelligent discourse to which I aspire in my writing…. Of course, not everyone appreciates piffle like me, but, that is NOT my problem; I can’t fix the whole world at once…. It does mean that I have to also write in such a way that those folks are included in the message’s recipient list, as they typically are in the direst need of such information as I impart in my ranting mode…. So be it….

Well, like it or not, I’ve done it again…. Four plus paragraphs of near-piffle, punctuated within an inch of its life, all with absolutely no meaning, or relevance to what is happening in reality…. What can I say? It’s a gift…. It also meets all the legal requirements for an introductory section, which means I can put down my quill, and start typing again…. That’s sort of what it feels like, even if it isn’t anything close to that…. Piffle takes me back to my youth, and I can’t help it…. nor would I, if I could…. I’m just a sentimental fool about that sort of thing, and there’s no changing that at this late date…. I suppose I’m starting to ramble beyond even the loose limits at play on this site, so, I’ll give it up now….

Shall we Pearl?…..

“It is not best that we should all think alike; it is difference of opinion that makes horseraces.” — Mark Twain, from Pudd’nhead Wilson’s Calendar(1894)
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Over the past two and a bit more years, I’ve written an average of about 2000 words per day, and have posted them all here on this blog…. This is either very egotistical, or very neurotic, and I don’t really give a crap which, because it was my only defense against insanity, at the time when I began. It seems to have worked, at least from this side, so, whether or not it is, or was, necessary is, to me, a moot point…. There is one advantage to having written so much, which I am now able to better utilize, since WP has been referring us to various older posts of the same nature as the one being read; that advantage is having a large archive of material that I know is ready to use, for those times, such as today, when my brain is somewhat less than perfectly groomed, and not willing to come out to play just yet….

Hence, the following discussion, which I found in a Pearl first posted on December 15, 2012…. I hope you enjoy it….

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“Do you have the patience to wait till your mud settles and the water is clear? Can you remain unmoving till the right actions arises by itself?” — Lao Tzu

Ever since being first exposed to the precepts of Taoism, back when I was in college in the late 60′s, it has always appealed to my sense of rightness, and makes the closest approach to what I personally believe about the Universe at large. Not the mystical parts, that cater to the religious order of the time it first was clarified by Lao Tzu, but the essence of the concept of reality, as being both within our perception, and unknown to us as beyond our understanding. We may not possess the necessary sense to be capable of receiving such information, whether about reality or fantasy, and if we assume the omnipotence of a god, then we would not be able to comprehend their existence, lacking the tools to perceive them with our five or six senses….

This knowledge, however, is tempered by the deduction that, as a physical part of the universe, we are connected to it, and to every other part, if only by sharing that existence. The connection, intuitively, is deeper than merely the physical; it extends somehow into the spiritual plane, which, though not tangible, is nonetheless a proven part of our mental reality. (What IS the mind?) It is this very lack of the ability to explain by which we may know the connection exists, as it echoes the nature of reality itself, which cannot be explained in words. Goodness knows why I’m trying, to be sure…. this is getting pretty esoteric, although, so far, it is consistently rational, if not entirely illuminating.

“Since everything in life is but an experience perfect in being what it is, having nothing to do with good or bad, acceptance or rejection, one may well burst out in laughter.” — Long Chen Pa

What better way to acknowledge and celebrate the perfection that we can see, or hear, feel, smell, taste, or imagine?…. It’s certainly preferable to a long, dusty discussion of esoteric concepts, and will encourage enlightenment just as efficiently, if not quite so verbally. In some way, I’m always looking for the perfect quote, the ultimate aphorism, that delivers that cosmic truth we are all seeking in one swell foop, and the above from Long Chen Pa comes very close to it, especially when considered in the light of what one concludes from considering the answers to the first two questions today. As a Westerner who has learned to appreciate what the East brings us, the following resonates very well….

“Somehow, in the midst of their horrid history, the best among the _gaijin_ learned a wonderful lesson.  They learned to distrust themselves, to doubt even what they were taught to believe or what their egos make them yearn to see.  To know that even truth must be scrutinized, it was a great discovery, almost as great as the treasure we of the East have to offer them in return, the gift of harmony.” — David Brin – Dr. Pak’s Preschool

There’s the key, ffolkes, right there in front of you…. Even truth must be scrutinized, or the universe will have its way with you, and you may never find the gift of harmony that is also there for the taking…. There, not so esoteric, after all….and, not too shabby at all, eh what?….

“The ancient Taoist sages were poised and alert….. like ice on the verge of melting.” — Taoist proverb
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In the same Pearl where I found the above short discussion, I found a very powerful poem, surprisingly… I was surprised because it was my own poem, and I had no recollection of writing it, or posting it…. But, there it was, and here it is….

Territorial imperative…

Beauty must define, as augment to existence,
as life must be more than mere subsistence.
Nature demands more.
Truth helps.

~~ gigoid ~~

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WARNING! FRESH RANT BELOW: Read it, or not, as you wish…. but, don’t tell me I didn’t warn you….      :lol:

“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.” — The Constitution of the United States of America Amendment 1, 1791

I had thought, when I found this restatement of the First Amendment, to use it as the opening for a politirant.  It IS the perfect lead-in to such discussions, as each and every one of the issues addressed in this codicil to the Constitution is under attack, and, in essence, is no longer one of our guaranteed rights…. I’m not crying “foul!” without evidence; the sky actually IS falling, to use an obvious literary reference. So, I suppose I  will…. use it to lead in to a politirant, that is…. Let’s take this piece by piece….

Religion in this country IS free to carry on with, as long as the religion is a Christian sect…. Any other group is likely to suffer a lot of obstruction in the pursuit of their religion, both by law, and more significantly, by custom, and the power of peer pressure…. On the State level, as well as locally, laws have been, and are being passed that prevent Muslim women, and men, from wearing certain articles of clothing their faith demands they wear; other religious icons and dogmatic representations have been subjected to legal restriction as well, for many religions…. except Christian…. But, such laws are only the surface of the problem….

There are even Christian churches, or, well, allegedly, or peripherally Christian churches, that are discriminated against by their larger co-conspirators, just because they don’t have the same ideas about what their particular focus of worship is all about…. Just ask anyone from the Mormons… or ask anyone in The Tribe about antisemitism in the twenty-first century, and listen to them list all the various examples one can find, and not just in the news…. Ask just about any Southern Baptist what they think about Catholics, or Jews…. but, be prepared to get spewed upon with some nasty vulgarities…. Then, ask anyone from Texas what they call a Muslim when they aren’t calling them ragheads….

Okay, that’s the first section of the Amendment, on religion…. That’s gone, kaput, no longer in force; from a cultural point of view, it really never was in place, not very strongly…. The Christian sects have always been good at paying lip service to the principles of their dogma and creed, (the ones about tolerance, and compassion for others….). but, they’ve never been terribly good about actually living up to those principles, have they?…. That little episode during the Middle Ages, the one they called The Inquisition, now THAT was a pretty thing, wasn’t it?…. Now, of course, we have the plague of pedophilia, and/or outright bigotry that permeates so many church hierarchies, and not just the Catholics…. Even a simple, even Christ-like soul, such as the current Pope seems to be, won’t have a big effect on that degree of corruption of spirit….

Next is free speech…. Need I even say anything at all about this? How free is our speech, when telling the truth about the illegal activities being perpetrated by the government is looked on as treason? How free is our media, when they won’t print anything that exposes the lies told every day by the government, much less publish the stuff that Eric Snowden had to show? Oh, they enumerate the prevarications in spots; there are fact checking sites, and a lot of folks who claim to call BS on them everywhere…. The lies they tell are so obvious, that much exposure is unavoidable, given the internet, and the scope of modern technology….

But, those sites, articles, and shows that expose the lies don’t get anywhere near the publicity or exposure that the lies get, or the spin on the lies, or anything at all that the pundits and talking heads have to say in defense of their lies…. Hell, much of the time, the response by the government, regarding a particular instance of being caught lying, is handled most effectively by just ignoring it, making no statement at all…. and the media lets them do it! Every time!…. No follow-up outrage, no further mention of the lies told, just silence…. When was the last time we saw a public official actually tried in court for lying to the public?….. Nixon, maybe? Maybe so….

I can think of, at minimum, three instances in the past six years of this administration when huge lies were told, or exposed, and not a single politician or government official has been prosecuted for those lies, up to, and including the President…. This doesn’t even address the lies told by the Republican Party (the “loyal” opposition?….) on a daily basis by that entities representatives…. I’m not going to bother naming them, as all of them were covered extensively in the news, for all the good it did….

Okay, free speech, and freedom of the press, those are pretty much gone, too…. Let’s see, now, what’s next?…. The freedom to peacefully assemble, and petition for redress of grievances…. Have you tried to get a permit to have a protest lately? I understand there are now a bunch of requirements that are necessary to be allowed to assemble anywhere in a public venue, all laws passed on a local level, as a rule, and enforced by police departments with a huge sense of entitlement, legal backing, and guns they aren’t afraid to use on the public….

Those requirements that must now be met before assembling any group for protest in public, requirements which are, if one actually reads this Amendment, completely illegal according to the Constitution, have to do with protecting property, mostly, from the vagaries of mob actions….. The laws were put in place through the efforts (i.e. they spent a lot of money to make sure their politicians voted the “correct” way….) of corporate entities…. The landed gentry, or more accurately,  private interests, to protect THEIR profit margins, and THEIR rights, as opposed to the rights of the people… Can’t have those ignorant voters taking money out of their pockets in their dissatisfaction, now, can we?….

Oh, and by the way…. When was the last time we heard about a policeman getting arrested , ( Or women, though police women don’t seem to ever go as completely overboard in their zealousness as their male counterparts, at least not without first becoming more male than female in their attitudes about violence, and the use of it to control the public….), for being violent during a protest? Or actually being prosecuted, and convicted for those kinds of acts? Very, very seldom, as you are well aware, I’m sure…. That particular issue is generally taken in hand by many governments by passing laws making the police immune to prosecution for ANYTHING they do while on duty…. pretty slick, eh? Become a policeman, get a get-out-of-jail-free card to stick in your wallet….

Not bad work, if you’ve got the stomach for it, along with a very, very skewed and distorted sense of honor, and justice…. To my mind, in the current state of our society, it takes a pretty sick mind to want to take on the duties of a police officer…. Sadly, there just aren’t enough honest, honorable men to fill the empty spaces, and the need for them….

As a result, I’d estimate that at least half of the men, and, almost as many of the women, who try to become police officers are clinically insane, and should never be allowed to have that sort of power over others, for they WILL eventually, even consistently, use that power for their own ends, or use it in ways that are destructive to the public good…. It’s their nature to do so, and they WILL do so, if given the chance… As evidence, I will once more point to the news, and the many instances reported of dishonorable, destructive behavior by police officers….

It must be remembered, THOSE reports only tell of the ones who are caught, or prosecuted, or screw up so badly even their own mates turn on them…. How many instances of police bullying, or intimidation of citizens in the pursuit of their ends, actually show up in those reports?…. More significantly, how often do you see a news report, many months after an incident, that was investigated for wrong-doing, or illegalities on the part of the officers, that exonerates the officers of all wrong? Of course, the fact that these investigations are carried out by OTHER POLICE OFFICERS seems to forever lose its place among the reactions from the press….

SIGH, now, I’m a little bummed out…. Here it is, not quite 7 AM, I’ve got a dental appointment to live through at 10, and I’ve already put the hammer to the First Amendment…. Say BYE BYE, ffolkes, to that hallowed document, the Bill of Rights, otherwise known as the first ten amendments to the US Constitution, because the efforts of the past 235 years by the corporate masters to do away with that hallowed document, as predicted by Thomas Jefferson, Alexander Hamilton, Thomas Paine, George Mason, and a number of other of our Founding Fathers, have almost reached their desired results….

Most, if not all, of the rights we were guaranteed in the Bill of Rights have now been abridged, in one way or another, and we can not depend on ANYONE in our government to give them back…. Not when we’ve already given them the keys to the treasury, by allowing them the right to vote their own salaries, their own health care system, their own retirement, all without ever realizing we were doing so….. The American people have cooperated fully in their own enslavement, ffolkes, and though the collars we wear are not yet such as to kill us outright with their fit, nonetheless have taught us to do without a lot of the freedoms our forefathers gave us, with our full, if sadly ignorant, consent….

Sorry to be the one to bring this out, but, hey, somebody has to, right? Right….. I may not be a small child, but, as far as I can see, the Emperor is NOT wearing any clothes, ffolkes…..  Now, let’s see how many ffolkes, and/or folks, out there will either admit to it, or reject my assertions…. nicely, of course…. I suppose this is a good place to bring this rant to a dignified close, though, given my history, that’s pretty much out of the question… the dignity, I mean…  I think I’m going to have to resort to a pearl to make my escape…. so, let’s see if Smart Bee can come up with just the right one…..

“What now if the sky were to fall?” — Terence (185-159 BC) — Heautontimoroumenos, Act iv, Sc. 3, 41, (719.)

“If you don’t make the rules, you don’t have to keep them. If you do make the rules, you won’t anyway.” — Smart Bee

How admirable, he who thinks not,
Life is fleeting,
When he sees the lightning!

– Basho

Well, it took three, and that’s okay, too…. because they’re perfect….
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Without even going back over this, I can feel it is something of an epic Pearl…. I can only hope it can carry the weight of its own dimensions…. Let’s go see….  Yep, completely epic… I apologize if I have set the bar too high, and y’all don’t have the time to read it all, or to comment… It’s a lot… But, if you should have a thought, or even two, about any of it, feel free to chime in…. Meantime, it’s started raining here, so I’m going out in it to soak up some moisture, first-hand…. See ya….

Y’all take care out there,
and May the Metaphorse be with you;
Blessed Be, dearest  Carole, Mark, and Theresa…
and everyone else, too…

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,
and sometimes
I just sits.

gigoid

dozer3

For your safety, we use ONLY the BEST metaphors….

Ffolkes,

Never having been one to deny myself new experiences, here I am, up and writing, wide awake, at 0335 in the AM…. Over the last few days, I’ve been plagued by a physical side-effect of quitting smoking, one that nobody bothers to mention to those of us considering the move; they just wait for it to hit us, AFTER we’ve already learned to do without the surcease to the spirit that smoking supplies…. I’m speaking of the incessant coughing that I’m experiencing, whether I smoke anything or not…. I’ve given up the cigarettes, though not without some trepidation for losing an old friend; the trade-off of twenty extra years of life is well worth it….

I’m not sure that giving up the pipe, in which I have been accustomed to use to consume my marijuana, which I use for relief of pain, low-level, constant anxiety, and sleep enhancement, is going to work, though…. It seems that NOT SMOKING is causing my lungs to attempt to clear themselves completely of whatever is in there annoying them, which entails an almost constant wheezing, accompanied by a following series of spasming coughs, to try to clear the phlegm causing the wheeze, from the air passage…

This can take up to ten or twelve hacking coughs, each one more violent than the last, to get the obstructing culprits cleared out adequately; until they are, I am gasping, coughing, and generally threatening to explode, unable to get a full breath, all the while experiencing the accompanying mild degree of panic that goes with that state….

“No one sings hymns to breath; but, Oh!, to be without it is death!”…. Rama, God of Death incarnate, from Roger Zelazny’s “Lord of Light”

So, here I am, coughing up a lung every few minutes, in a semi-constant state of oxygen deprivation, with no pot to soothe my spirit, or alter my consciousness far enough to keep me from wanting to kill someone every other moment of the day…. I’m amazed I’m not in jail yet, for having wasted a number of people on the street….. Of course, that may be because I’ve been coughing too much to get out on the streets, but, you know what I mean….

It has to be annoying to my lady; it can’t be easy hearing me cough up what sounds like a hairball every few minutes… but, so far, she has only once accused me of sounding like a sick cat, puking in somebody’s shoes for effect…. She’s more patient than she seems…. But, it is no less annoying for me, to have to stop whatever I’m doing, including this process, every couple of minutes, to take the time to catch my breathe, after completely losing it during one of the attacks…. It also makes it hard to consider going into public, as I get a lot of odd looks when I’m trying to clear my chest and throat of the obstructions provided by my own body’s healing process…. or, that’s what I’m assuming, anyway…

If it IS NOT healing, but is rather a sign that it will NOT heal at all, well, then, I’m really up that proverbial creek, named after our digestive products, without a directional steering device for boating vehicles, otherwise known as a paddle…. Oh well, I guess I can only wait to see if, or, more positively, when it passes, to see how my breathing has either improved, or gotten worse for the period of severe coughing…. I hate it when I have to wait like this, but, there is no hurrying the body in its processes…. They happen at nature’s speed, which has no connection to, nor is affected by how we feel about it, or how badly we want it to change….

Well, now that I’ve self-ranted against my own foolishness, for having first gotten hooked on cigarettes when I was 16, and for thinking that giving them up would be easier than it is, I suppose I should go on to something a bit more interesting for y’all…. Sorry ’bout all this complaining, ffolkes, I’m getting old, I guess, and physical issues are assuming a bigger part of my attention these days, since there are SO MANY of them…. most of which were NOT IN THE DAMN MANUAL!!! But, I promised myself I wouldn’t be one of those old people who are always full of complaints, so, let’s just take the above six paragraphs of whining, and be on our way into the day’s dive for some delectable pearls….

Shall we Pearl?…..

“The shortest and surest way to live with honor in the world is to be in reality what we would appear to be; all human virtues increase and strengthen themselves by the practice and experience of them.” — Socrates (BC 469-399)
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“I believe that all government is evil, and that trying to improve it is  largely a waste of time.” — H. L. Mencken

Eric Snowden will someday be recognized as the honorable Über-geek he really is; more importantly, I am hoping that he’ll rightfully be admired as an American hero. It is already clear that he was just as brave as any soldier on the front lines of a war, for having had the courage and integrity to defy his corporate-controlled, amoral spy-masters, to reveal to the world the illegal and seemingly limitless spying tactics used by the NSA at the behest of our governmental corporate lackeys, knowing full well that by doing so, he was setting himself up to be persecuted by them. This situation is a perfect example of how the government will say one thing in public, and do another in private…. More specifically, it shows how little the government believes in its own need to follow the laws they make…. They seem to feel as if the making of the laws allows them to assume they are exempt from them….

“I have known a vast quantity of nonsense talked about bad men not looking you in the face.  Don’t trust that conventional idea. Dishonesty will stare honesty out of countenance, any day in the week, if there is anything to be got by it.” — Charles Dickens

We have “whistleblower laws” in place in our country, laws which are SUPPOSED to protect people like Mr. Snowden from being prosecuted when they bring illegal activities into the light of day; theoretically, these laws keep them safe from the people they are accusing, who would otherwise try to harm them to stop the bleeding…. However, our dearly beloved ruling class chooses to ignore all that, and are trying to bring charges of espionage and treason against him, as though he were some kind of spy himself, working for another country….

Eric Snowden was not a spy, unless it was for US, the people; after all, the NSA did hire him in the first place didn’t they? He must have had some technical credibility, and must have been relatively clean of misdeeds, as an über-geek, in order to have been asked to work for them at all, right? I would assume so…. Of course, that makes the arguably incorrect assumption that the NSA has some clue as to what they are doing, as well as at least a small degree of expertise in their chosen field… I could be wrong about that, though…..  :lol:

I think he’s done about as well as he could to keep from helping our enemies; what he HAS done, to our own leaders, is embarrass them highly; THAT is what they will not forgive…. To a politician “face” is very important, as are all illusions of appearance; why else would they all wear those stupid ties, all of a “power” color, and that silly-ass flag pin…. They feel they cannot afford to be seen as weak, or indecisive, so they will make ANY decision, no matter how wrong it may be, just to keep from appearing as if they don’t know what to do. They’re incapable of making a decision at all if it would make it seem as if they were admitting to being wrong in any way…. To give Mr. Snowden the credit for what has done, they would have to first admit they have DONE wrong, and they are not willing to do that, more’s the pity….

http://news.yahoo.com/snowden-says-calls-reform-prove-intel-leaks-were-114707696.html

I happen to agree with Mr. Snowden’s assessment of the overall effect of his information leaks; I think he has made the world a safer place for all of us, if only because he made it perfectly clear that we are being lied to, right and left, by our own leaders. This is invaluable information, that the public NEEDS to know, if we are to be able to protect ourselves…. It is a bit disheartening, to be sure, to have to protect ourselves from our own leaders, but, hey, it’s better to know than not to know, for sure…. Now that we know, we can act accordingly to bring more pressure on the government to straighten up and fly right; if nothing else, more people have learned that it is important to keep a close eye on those who would call themselves our leaders, to keep them from screwing us around any more than they already are….

“I believe and I say it is true Democratic feeling, that all the measures of the Government are directed to the purpose of making the rich richer and the poor poorer.” — William Henry Harrison

I believe that not only is Eric Snowden NOT a traitor; I consider him to be a Patriot of this country, deserving of the Medal of Honor, or the Freedom Medal, the highest civilian award possible, for bravery and courage in the face of severe persecution by his own government, and for bringing to light the illegal and immoral acts of our government lackeys. It took great courage, and great commitment to the truth, for him to make the decisions he made, and I, for at least one, thank him with all my heart….

“He who endeavors to serve, to benefit, and improve the world, is like a swimmer, who struggles against a rapid current, in a river lashed into angry waves by the winds.  Often they roar over his head, often they beat him back and baffle him.  Most men yield to the stress of the current…  Only here and there the stout, strong heart and vigorous arms struggle on toward ultimate success.” — Albert Pike (1809-1891)

(Albert Pike…. another interesting fellow…. If you have a few moments, Google his name, and read the wikipedia article about him… It’s a pretty interesting life he led, and I wonder why he is less of a well-known figure than he is… He was responsible for a lot of good work back in the 19th century, and deserves some of our thanks for all he did to preserve the freedoms we DO have today…. Check him out…)
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Political ranting over the news is an exhilarating, if a bit raucous, occupation for so early in the morning, and tends to leave me a bit unsettled, if only in my level of anxiety (No worries, said anxiety is ALWAYS with me, to a slight degree, so it’ not a big issue, or one I’m unfamiliar with….Life goes on, with or without it….)… When I feel this way, I always seem to turn to a poem to bring me back to the center. The poems this lady wrote always fill the bill, for me, to bring me some kind of soothing peace, even when the poem has no apparent connection to anything else I’ve been writing about…. It works for me, and, hopefully, will work for y’all as well…. Enjoy!…

A bird came down the walk:
He did not know I saw;
He bit an angle-worm in halves
And ate the fellow, raw.

And then he drank a dew
From a convenient grass,
And then hopped sidewise to the wall
To let a beetle pass.

He glanced with rapid eyes
That hurried all abroad,–
They looked like frightened beads, I thought;
He stirred his velvet head

Like one in danger; cautious,
I offered him a crumb,
And he unrolled his feathers
And rowed him softer home

Than oars divide the ocean,
Too silver for a seam,
Or butterflies, off banks of noon,
Leap, splashless, as they swim.

~~ Emily Dickinson ~~

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It is most likely for the best that the only thing left for me to do today is to go old-school…. It is currently only ten minutes after 5 AM, an early hour for me to be this close to being done with this missive…. I’ll take a short break, to let Smart Bee, and myself, catch our breath, both figuratively, and literally speaking…. In the infamous words of the Governator… “I’ll be back….”

As threatened, here I am, and breathing easily, for a change…. This will be a lifestyle pearl, chock full of the wisdom of the ages, to give us all a clue as to where the next steps on the path to enlightenment might be placed to best advantage… Enjoy!….

“The hardest part about gaining any new idea is sweeping out the false idea occupying that niche. As long as that niche is occupied, evidence and proof and logical demonstration get nowhere. But once the niche is emptied of the wrong idea that has been filling it – once you can honestly say, “I don’t know,” then it becomes possible to get at the truth.” — Robert A. Heinlein

“Just as treasures are uncovered from the earth, so virtue appears from good deeds, and wisdom appears from a pure and peaceful mind. To walk safely through the maze of human life, one needs the light of wisdom and the guidance of virtue.” — Buddha (B.C. 568-488)

“Character is much easier kept than recovered.” — Thomas Paine

“It is not without good reason said, that he who has not a good memory should never take upon him the trade of lying.” — Michael de Montaigne (1533-1592) — Essays, Book i, Chap. ix, Of Liars89

“A man hears what he wants to hear and disregards the rest.” — Paul Simon

“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

“After enlightenment, do the laundry.” — Zen proverb

Ooh, ooh, that reminds me… I’m out of clean socks….     :-)
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Okay, so they can’t all be perfect….. though that last group of pearls comes pretty close…. Let’s see how much damage I’ve done today…. Okay, that’s surprisingly good, given the handicap I gave myself today by starting so early…. I’ve once again greeted the dawn, and it’s time now to cease my endless chatter, in favor of the pending activities I have scheduled today out in the Big Blue Room…. Rental cars, dentists, stores, doctors, all are in my radar for the next couple days… Wow, it’s almost as if I had a real life!… See ya….

Y’all take care out there,
and May the Metaphorse be with you;
Blessed Be, dearest  Carole, Mark, and Theresa…
and everyone else, too…

When I works, I works hard.
When I sits, I sits loose.
When I thinks, I falls asleep.s

Which is Why….


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

gigoid

dozer3

Paltry measures yield no benefits, milord….

Ffolkes,

As far as I can see, the only effect the shutdown of the government seems to have produced, is a reduction in the overall amount of noise we must endure, noises normally supplied by the busy lips and tongues of politicians…. Oh, they’re all running around, having meetings, giving interviews to whomever will listen, whereupon new articles appear, to explore the latest load of bilge that has come down the pike, shouting how this one dissed the other one, or what that one said about this, that, or, even the other…. It all gets a bit loud, for my taste, so, I’m glad the shutdown has caused a bit less of it to assault my/our tender ears….

I went to look for something to rant about this morning, but all the news writers are apparently avoiding the budget mess, in favor of other stuff clamoring for attention, such as the BART strike being threatened for this week, or Jerry Brown’s baldness, or the baseball playoffs… All of which is  important stuff, I’m sure, but, not very rantable for those of us who require a bit more actual drama, rather than mere vicarious curiosity, while having no actual need to engage in celebrity worship.

I guess it goes to show that we really DON’T need the government; all of those things that we get from it are actually not essential to our existence on an everyday basis, and NOT having it around, constantly creating issues and problems, seems, to me, to be rather peaceful…. I find it rather heartening, as well as comforting, to have heard not a single stupid remark by a politician yet today, even though I’ve already gone over the headlines once, to see if there was anything worthwhile to pick at…. I suppose you could call that serendipity, as it is certainly a boon, and certainly unexpected…

Actually, the fact that there is NOT any real news to pick at is NOT a good thing…. I know, as does everyone else, that the nation is rushing headlong into another financial crisis, spurred on by a small group of self-styled martyrs, who don’t give a shit about anyone but themselves, and, who have no clue that they have signaled their own demise as a political force in the future, by their intransigent insistence on pursuing this farce…. The American public is well aware of who is responsible for this mess, and they WILL make their anger clear in a month, when a number of elections will bring home to the Republicans just how stupid this has been, and just how far their alienation of voters has progressed…. They’ll be lucky to still have a functioning organization by the next national election….

The lack of news articles right now, though, points out to me an even more disappointing aspect of the matter, which has been, and continues to be, the absolutely piss-poor job done by the print media in covering all of this…. They have avoided taking shots at the people responsible, and have studiously ignored much of the public’s reaction to what is taking place. They also haven’t looked very hard at any of the stuff the whole budget mess is designed to cover up, like what is happening in Afghanistan, or Iraq, or Iran, or Guantanamo Bay, or any of the other areas of the world where our political presence has led us into immoral, illegal acts of war, against people who are NOT the responsible parties for the events, far in the past now, for which we are allegedly seeking vengeance. But, hey, what’re a few deaths in the third world, if it means the politicos get the breathing room to plan their next great theft from the public?….

Okay, I guess I’ve ranted enough for one day…. I’m pretty disgusted with the entire BRC right now, and though that is nothing new, the degree of outrage I’m experiencing this go-around is much greater than usual…. Obama, Boehner, Mitchell, Pelosi, Biden, McCain, Bachman, all of them are assholes, and there isn’t a damn thing to do about it, other than be glad that, for the moment at least, they’re not making as much noise in their posturing, meaning there is less for us to have to endure…. They haven’t ceased their lies, or their delusional beliefs, or trying to fulfill any of their private agendas, which have NOTHING to do with what is good for the public….. They’re just not making as much noise at it, as they are supposed to be SHUT DOWN….. which we are supposed to believe is a big deal….

Me? I’d rather go do something worthwhile…. Shall we Pearl?…..

“It is no disgrace not to be able to do everything; but to undertake, or pretend to do, what you are not made for, is not only shameful, but extremely troublesome.” — Plutarch
_____________________________

Having ranted above, before I was really ready, I’ll avoid the same mistake here, and go directly to an old-school format, saving us all time, and energy that can best be used later, for something actually productive in the real world….. Well, a man can dream, can’t he?….

“Adversity is the state in which man mostly easily becomes acquainted with himself, being especially free of admirers then.” — Samuel Johnson

“It is a good thing to be rich and strong, but it is a better thing to be loved.” — Euripides

“The contest for ages has been to rescue liberty from the grasp of executive power.” — Daniel Webster

“If 150,000 people do something really stupid………it’s still stupid.” — Smart Bee: gigoid agrees….

“Reason obeys itself; and ignorance does whatever is dictated to it.” — Thomas Paine

“Death is not the greatest loss in life. The greatest loss is what dies inside us while we live.” — Norman Cousins

“All your life, you were only waiting for this moment to be free.” — Lennon & McCartney
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I picked this poem out yesterday, when it happened to jump up in front of me, while searching for pearls for the Pearl posted then…. It just seemed appropriate, given the current issues being played out in the public arena, and Shel Silverstein’s poems are always welcome here…. Enjoy!….

Hug O’ War

I will not play at tug o’ war.
I’d rather play at hug o’ war,
Where everyone hugs
Instead of tugs,
Where everyone giggles
And rolls on the rug,
Where everyone kisses,
And everyone grins,
And everyone cuddles,
And everyone wins.

~~ Shel Silverstein ~~

_____________________________

I could rant. There is enough going on right now in the public venue to provide more than enough angst for me to get started again, though, this time, I think I’d switch over to picking on the priestly hierarchies rather than the talking heads; I’ve been neglecting them of late, and they must be getting lonely for some of my charming accusations and deliberate taunting. I know I would…. be getting lonely, that is….

Any who, I’m choosing, instead, to be a nice guy today, and NOT rant any more…. Though it doesn’t necessarily make any difference in the long run, I’m feeling a bit mellow this morning, so I’ll let you, and the preachers, off the hook for today… We’ll go with a random, harlequin pearl, with little or no direction for SB on how to pick the entries…. It usually comes out well when we go that route, so…. enjoy!….

“Logic: an instrument used for bolstering a prejudice.” — Elbert Hubbard

“If we attend continually and promptly to the little that we can do, we shall ere long be surprised to find how little remains that we cannot do.” — Samuel Butler

“If truth is beauty, how come no one has their hair done in the library?” — Lily Tomlin

“The sages put great stock in saying that every ending is truly a beginning, or every beginning an ending, or insisting that there are no endings or beginnings, or remarking that there is nothing new, and we are doomed to endlessly repeat ourselves. Or have I said all this before?” — The Teachings of Ebenezum, Vol. LXXXVII

“A man who dares waste one hour of time has not discovered the value of life.” — Charles Dickens

I slept, and dreamed that life was Beauty;
I woke, and found that life was Duty.
Was thy dream then a shadowy lie?
Toil on, poor heart, unceasingly;
And thou shalt find thy dream to be
A truth and noonday light to thee.

– Ellen Sturgis Hooper (1816-1841) — Life a Duty

“And so it was, later,
as the miller told his tale,
that her face, at first just ghostly,
turned a whiter shade of pale.”

– Procol Harum
_____________________________

One of the best parts about creating these Pearls for me is that each one is a surprise…. I have no plan, or direction when I sit down to write, only to write as long as I can before taking a break to ease the pain… The resulting lack of consistency, while not hobbling my imagination or ability to find words, does make each day’s output as new to me as it is to y’all (a hopeful, friendly word, y’all….). I kind of like it, as it is always fresh, in that sense, if in no other…. Let’s see how this one came out…

I find myself to be unable to make a coherent decision about the quality of this Pearl; it’s much more complex than I imagined it to be, especially given the fact that I wrote it…. Since I’m unsure, I’ll do what comes naturally, which is to post it, and hope for the best….. I don’t think it will cause any significant damage, to my reputation, or anyone else’s, (more’s the pity….), so I can ask the lawyer for my retainer back in a few days, if no further lawsuits are threatened…. If nothing else, we’ve struck a blow or two against the oppressors in the name of revolution, which, after all, merely means “change”…. and, if you hadn’t noticed, change is how the Universe works…. For better, or for worse, change will happen…. see ya….

Y’all take care out there,
and May the Metaphorse be with you;
Blessed Be, dearest  Carole, Mark, and Theresa…
and everyone else, too…

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,
and sometimes
I just sits.

gigoid

dozer3

Initial ethical alignments are in progress….

    Ffolkes,

I made a small tactical error this morning…. Before I started to write this, I read an email, and took a few moments to consider what it had to say….. It was yet another unwelcome begging letter from Organizing for Action, the grassroots fund raising organization formed after Obama’s second election victory… This organization sends me at least two emails every day, each with another call to action, based on whatever political dust-up is currently on tap, followed by a request for money. The calls to action lately relate mostly to the news of what is happening in Congress regarding the current budget mess….. Each email tells me how critical it is that I send them money, or the big, bad Republicans, who have already raised more money than we have (“we” being the good guys, the White House myrmidons as opposed to the Republican myrmidons….), will shut down the government…

I’m torn at the prospect of seeing the massive bureaucracy we call our government grind to a halt; if nothing else the NOISE that is generated is offensive, consisting as it does of the cries of innocent victims, the cacophony of outraged citizens, the outlandish accusations and blame-throwing by both political parties, and the wails of frustration from ffolkes like you and me, who cannot comprehend the depths of ignorance that are being displayed on a daily basis in Washington D.C….. However, on the other hand, as Will Rogers said, the people never suffer so much as when Congress is in session, so, having the whole ball of wax inactive could conceivably do some extensive good, just by not doing anything….

My mistake, as you can see, was allowing the email’s content to get under my skin…. Here we are, government shut down, everything in society at sixes and sevens, and the best they can come up with is, send us $5, so we can fight back?…. What a crock! How stupid do they think people are? Obviously, pretty stupid, as they just continue with their begging, no matter what is going on, or how much they’ve collected…. I guess, for every million emails they send out, they probably have a couple thousand assholes who would send money to Mars, if the politicians asked them to, so they just keep sending them out, relying on the power of statistical percentages to keep the money flowing into their coffers…..

This whole situation is one that brings me to a point where my only reaction is “So? They’re screwing us again? So, what else is new?” I am not only outraged, frustrated, and sad at the ignorance and sheer idiocy currently on display in Washington, I am becoming bored with it…. The same old bullshit, not even dressed in new clothes, keeps falling at our feet, disgorged on a daily basis by people who seem to be congenital liars, thieves, and just plain assholes, ‘scuse my French, which I’m allowed to say because their actions indicate nothing else…. As I said…. BOORRRING…..

We are hearing the same old story, told at the same old stand, by the same old shameless people, insulting us with the same old lies…. I’d be angry, but, it’s more depressing than it is enraging, because of the simple fact that most people in this country not only don’t know they’re being lied to, but, when it is pointed out to them, they try to rationalize, rather than reject…. Rather than admit they have been in error, they’d rather try to justify being wrong, and refuse to change….

It’s saddening, and maddening, to see the LACK of intelligence and independence of spirit that once characterized this country and its people… The American public has turned into a massive crowd of willing slaves to their corporate masters, proud of their ignorance, filled with a false sense of both their own worth, and their entitlement to rights and privileges not earned.

Hmm… I see that I’ve again usurped the intro section to vent… If I have any hope of completing this Pearl by the usual time, I’d better get on with it…. Just consider this your starting point, and I’ll dive in here to begin the search for some outsourced wisdom for us to consider this morning….

Shall we Pearl?…..

“If you are beginning to doubt what I am saying, you are probably hallucinating.” — The Firesign Theater, _Everything you know is Wrong_
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“It does no harm just once in a while to acknowledge that the whole country isn’t in flames, that there are people in the country besides politicians, entertainers, and criminals.” — Charles Kuralt

Mr. Kuralt, while correct in his statement, mostly, forgets to include one stupidly large, important group connected to the groups he mentions above, to wit: the huge number of IDIOTS among the unwashed masses who support the politicians, admire the celebrities, and regard the criminals as just another form of entertainment, unless it touches on them directly. It is a disturbing thought to realize the number of people who believe that politicians are honest, who think celebrities are role models, and who regard TV as the closest approach to reality they intend to tolerate…..

In part, he IS right, though…. There ARE people who don’t hurt others as their basic modus operandi…. There are people who don’t vote for thieving assholes (Though that’s a tough one to avoid, given that practically everyone who runs for office falls into that category…. I guess I mean that a lot of people vote for someone on the ballot, without fully realizing they are being lied to…. Mostly, I think they have suspicions, but vote anyway, because they can’t imagine any alternatives….)

Society does not consist solely of those who monopolize the news every day; it is simply the case that those people don’t fit into one of those categories that make compelling news stories, so they aren’t ever written up like those who lie, cheat, and steal, whether that criminality is expressed in Washington D.C. in an office building, in a sound studio, or on the mean streets… Actors end up in this group because they show the unwashed masses what the politicians and criminals are up to in stories and films….

“You could drop a leaflet or a Hubbard squash on the head of a person in any land, and you would almost certainly hit a brain that was whirling in small, conventional circles.” — E. B. White

Hence, due to what sells the best, those three groups end up on the news, in theaters, and on our TV’s, phones, and computers, all day and night, with all the bells and whistles they can figure out how to hang on them…. Since that is all there is to see, it is easy to start to believe that these are all there is, and the world is nothing more than one big illusionary collection of people and events that has no direction, other than straight to Hell in a Hummer….

Yes, there ARE other people in this country other than those three groups…. but, they aren’t making the news, are they? They’re watching it, and, sadly, mostly keeping their mouths shut…. which is pretty much why Hell is only a few miles away now…..

“Democracy is based on the assumption that a million men are wiser than one  man. How’s that again?  I missed something.” — Robert A. Heinlein

This will be a short rant, since I count it as merely a continuation of the first section; it’s a slight change of subject, but, not much, if one looks closely…. Besides the entertainment value of ranting, for me, it’s also my indictment of the very people who are dominating today’s headlines, so, I’m good with however it comes out, to be honest…. I’m disgusted, and disappointed, and a large number of other adjectives that indicate similar feelings, directed at the ‘assholes on parade’ we’re forced to watch… So disgusted, I am going to stop here, because it’s just making me crazy, and want to break things….

“In a cruel and evil world, being cynical can allow you to get some entertainment out of it.” — Daniel Waters, screenwriter of HEATHERS
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For me, poetry has as much, or more, power to take my mind away as does the best prose, or the best films, and runs a parallel course with the words of someone I love, in how strongly I can be affected in my emotions….. In that light, my favorite poets are favored, not because of how popular or famous they are, but because of how I feel when I read them… From this poet, I always find both the power of elegance and beauty, and hope for the spirit we entail as humans….

As Once the Winged Energy of Delight

As once the winged energy of delight
carried you over childhood’s dark abysses,
now beyond your own life build the great
arch of unimagined bridges.

Wonders happen if we can succeed
in passing through the harshest danger;
but only in a bright and purely granted
achievement can we realize the wonder.

To work with Things in the indescribable
relationship is not too hard for us;
the pattern grows more intricate and subtle,
and being swept along is not enough.

Take your practiced powers and stretch them out
until they span the chasm between two
contradictions…For the god
wants to know himself in you.

~~ Rainer Maria Rilke ~~

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What you will find below is a Classic pearl… It chose itself, which is the primary characteristic that sets this type apart; when I furnish the parameters for inclusion, the outcome is of a different nature. For some reason, probably having to do with magic, or something, this kind always comes out stronger, and stranger, and more beautiful in execution of the humorous parts, if not always more elegantly attractive due to the identifiable sources involved….

If any of that is comprehensible to you, I think you could consider yourself to be a regular…. It’s clear that you have a “different” sort of mind, for which logic and compassion dictate that one suggest, it possibly would be smart to make an appointment with your psychiatrist, should you have one…. If you don’t, I’m bound to remind y’all, the law requires you to engage one, if you spend more than the recommended amount of time pearling; you can get around that requirement by keeping your certificate of sanity at hand, as provided to you at birth, and again at your graduation from high school….. That IS what they gave us, right?…. I lost the one I got at birth, but, I just thought they gave me a new on at the commencement exercises in 1968…. Oh, well, no es importante, si?…

Just so it’s all clear… If it doesn’t say who said it, I found it in Smart Bee without any attribution….. and Google didn’t know either…. or possibly, it didn’t care…..

“It’s so clean. It’s certainly uncontaminated by cheese.”

“My main reason for adopting literature as a profession was that, as the author is never seen by his clients, he need not dress respectably.” — George Bernard Shaw (1856-1950)

“Some professors asked a monk to lecture to them on  spiritual matters. The monk ascended a podium, struck it once  with his stick, and descended. The academics were dumbfounded.  The monk asked them, “Do you understand what I have told you?”  One professor said, “I do not understand.” The monk said, “I have concluded my lecture.”

“A thing moderately good is not so good as it ought to be. Moderation in temper is always a virtue; but moderation in principle is always a vice.” — Thomas Paine [Author of the Declaration of Independence and even more, but no politician.]

“Not a shred of evidence exists in favor of the idea that life is serious.” — Brendan Gill

“I hope I never get so old I get religious.” — Ingmar Bergman

NLTDB  :-)  :-)  :-):   Nothin’ Left To Do But Smile, Smile, Smile.
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“Okay,” he said, self-consciously, “not bad.” Small cough…. “Not bad at all….” Larger cough…. “I wonder if anyone will read it?”, was his next plaintive question, so I kicked him out of my head…. But, after I caught my breath from coughing, I realized that, yes, it wasn’t bad at all, so, I can quit now, which is probably for the best, for all of us…. See ya tomorrow, ffolkes…

Y’all take care out there,
and May the Metaphorse be with you;
Blessed Be, dearest  Carole, Mark, and Theresa…
and everyone else, too…

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,
and sometimes
I just sits.

gigoid

dozer3

Forlorn remnants of an exemplary poltroon….

Ffolkes,

Now that the crisis has passed in the Middle East, if only for the moment, the news seems to be singularly free of rantable material. Oh, there’s been another shooting, this time in a place where it raises even more questions than it does outrage…. The victims weren’t children, they were Naval workers, both those in the service, or civilians working for the Navy, and the shooter was a disgruntled Navy Reservist (though, in reality, even without firm information, I think we can safely say he was a bit beyond mere disgruntlement….) (Is that a word? Disgruntlement? I guess it is, Spell Checker didn’t even blink….), so it’s a little harder to feel the same degree of chagrin when it isn’t some crazy adolescent shooting back at the bullies….

Not that the victims deserved to be shot; that isn’t my point. It’s just harder to create controversy when the participants were all consenting adults, already engaged in activities that are, in at least one way, bound to bring some danger to one’s existence. I don’t know why this idiot nutted up, or what he was trying to accomplish, but a place where their entire purpose for existing is to create articles of war, is one that might conceivably be used as a logical target for anyone wanting to express their outrage, or in this case, probably anger, based on delusions.

It’s rather like someone who wears a gun on their hip, such as the police…. eventually, someone is going to shoot AT them, just because they are carrying…. Anyone who doesn’t acknowledge that truth is begging to get their head blown off for no good reason (I guess it has to be said…. IS there a good reason?…. The jury is still out on that one, ffolkes….). I don’t carry guns, as I believe in using weapons that aren’t so obvious, or so limited in usefulness, but, I was raised around them, and taught how to treat them with the respectful alertness that any dangerous part of life should be given. To ignore the realities of using weapons, of any kind, guns, knives, brains, explosives, whatever, is to invite one’s own demise by those self-same articles, and that is the simple truth.

But, Americans, for some reason, seem to think that passing a law will remove this truth from reality. Every time there is a new shooting, especially when children are involved as victims, or even as perpetrators, there is a huge outcry, and those who want to be protected from reality put out plaintive demands for more restrictive laws to control guns. This, in turn, prompts the survivalists and right-wing paranoids to believe the “guvviment” is going to “take away my guns”, so they too create a huge outcry, of resentment that anyone would challenge their entitlement, and their abject fear of facing life unarmed….

In truth, ANY kind of attempted change in morality in society as a whole is bound to fail in its purpose, because, like it or not, society’s morals are not subject to adjustment by the passage of laws. Trying to make society more moral by creating new laws, to control guns, or to reach ANY moral objective, is doomed to failure from the start.

Strange, isn’t it, how lately I seem to be confining my ranting to the intro section? It’s as if whatever I have to say is pushing its way out before I even get any coffee down… This does provide some rather intense emotional pressure to the ranting, I admit, giving it a good, sharp edge,  but, I’m not sure the subjects I choose while still groggy are always going to be the best choice.

Oh well, it’s unproductive to worry about stuff like that before it happens, so, I’ll just take this as a good thing, and roll with it…. Besides, it’s a pretty good rant, even if I don’t offer any solutions…. I’m also not offering any judgments, other than those prompted by observation of facts, so, it all balances out…. If nothing else, it got us this far, right? Right….

Shall we Pearl?…..

“A society without religion is like a crazed psychopath without a loaded .45″ — Smart Bee

:lol:   I can be a funny guy, sometimes, mostly because I laugh hardest whenever I look in a mirror…..
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Another advantage to ranting immediately, I find, is that it frees me up to use the old-school technique for at least one of the three sections that make up a Daily Pearl, which always makes me happy… (I’m really a pretty simple guy, all in all; simple things make me happy….)  It also, for some unknown, arguably self-serving, reason gives me leave to use the harlequin method, sans parameters to give SB for the search…. The real reason for that is, it seems to work best for SB’s efficiency level; I go through fewer hordes of quotes to find the right group when I give SB its head, so… Off we go…. I’d suggest you either strap in, or hang on….

“Even death is not to be feared by one who has lived wisely.” — Buddha

“Admit Nothing. Blame Everyone. Be Bitter.” — Matt Hopkins

“All national institutions of churches, whether Jewish, Christian, or Turkish, appear to me no other than human inventions, set up to terrify and enslave mankind, and monopolize power and profit.” — Thomas Paine

“The mind ought sometimes to be amused, that it may the better return to thought, and to itself.” — Phaedrus

“For he who lives more lives than one more deaths than one must die.” — Oscar Wilde

“A celibate clergy is an especially good idea, because it tends to suppress any hereditary propensity toward fanaticism.” — Carl Sagan, Contact

“We should be careful to get out of an experience only the wisdom that is in it – and stop there; lest we be like the cat that sits down on a hot stove-lid. She will never sit down on a hot stove-lid again, and that is well; but also she will never sit down on a cold one anymore.” — Mark Twain
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Today’s poetry selection is also at the suggestion of Smart Bee; while searching out the group of pearls in section one, an excerpt from this poem came up, and I was reminded of how long it had been since I read the whole piece. It is a long poem, forty-two stanzas, all the same length as these two, the beginning two of the epic….. Rather than include all of it here, and making y’all scroll down to see the rest of the Pearl, I’ve included a link to the site where I found this copy of the poem, on PoemHunter.com, a very good site for finding good poetry, from all ages…. If you have some time, take some of it to read this entire poem; it is a marvel….

The Eve Of St. Agnes

ST Agnes’ Eve—Ah, bitter chill it was!
The owl, for all his feathers, was a-cold;
The hare limp’d trembling through the frozen grass,
And silent was the flock in woolly fold:
Numb were the Beadsman’s fingers, while he told
His rosary, and while his frosted breath,
Like pious incense from a censer old,
Seem’d taking flight for heaven, without a death,
Past the sweet Virgin’s picture, while his prayer he saith.

His prayer he saith, this patient, holy man;
Then takes his lamp, and riseth from his knees,
And back returneth, meagre, barefoot, wan,
Along the chapel aisle by slow degrees:
The sculptur’d dead, on each side, seem to freeze,
Emprison’d in black, purgatorial rails:
Knights, ladies, praying in dumb orat’ries,
He passeth by; and his weak spirit fails
To think how they may ache in icy hoods and mails.

continued…..

~~ John Keats ~~


http://www.poemhunter.com/poem/the-eve-of-st-agnes/
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I’ve looked, and I’ve patiently waited, to see if another rant surfaced in my consciousness, or, more likely, the same rant, back around for another dance, but, nothing is pushing its way into the light, so, I’ll take this opportunity to go build another old-school pearl, this time with some loose parameters for SB, just to mix it up….

I realized just now I’ve been pretty easy of late on churches, and the whole delusional system perpetrated on humanity by the professional shamans who call themselves priests, or preachers, or ministers, or some such pseudonym for what they actually are (which can be most accurately termed “tricksters”, or, “con-men”, or, most simply, “gay deceivers”…) I mean, think about it, logically, and dispassionately, for just a moment; the shadowy lack of substance of what these tricksters propose as reality blows away in the breeze of reason, whereupon it becomes clear…. these are people whose only goal in life is to tell you a story that will convince you to give them your money, by your own choice…. I can’t use the term “by free will” when people who fall for this aren’t using that particular faculty, at least not in the sense of being free of influence…

Any who, let’s see what Smart Bee has to say on the subject of religion, and churches, and the whole supernatural, metaphysical ball o’wax…..

“Doth not the sun harden the clay? Doth it not also soften the wax? As it is one sun that worketh both, even so it is one Soul that willeth contrarieties.” — Akhenaton? (c. B.C. 1375)

“Anybody who wants religion is welcome to it, as far as I’m concerned — I support your right to enjoy it.  However, I would appreciate it if you exhibited more respect for the rights of those people who do not wish to share your dogma, rapture or necrodestination.” — Frank Zappa, “The Real Frank Zappa Book

“It is always dangerous to offend the dignity of the ignorant.” — Rene Caillie, 1827

REDEMPTION, n.  Deliverance of sinners from the penalty of their sin, through their murder of the deity against whom they sinned.  The doctrine of Redemption is the fundamental mystery of our holy religion, and whoso believeth in it shall not perish, but have everlasting life in which to try to understand it.

We must awake Man’s spirit from his sin,
And take some special measure for redeeming it;
Though hard indeed the task to get it in
Among the angels any way but teaming it,
Or purify it otherwise than steaming it.
I’m awkward at Redemption–a beginner:
My method is to crucify the sinner.

Golgo Brone

~~ Ambrose Bierce, The Devil’s Dictionary

“History records no more gallant struggle than that of humanity against the truth.” — Smart Bee

“knowlege is a polite word for dead but unburied imagination….think twice before thinking.” — e.e. cummings

RELIGION, n.  A daughter of Hope and Fear, explaining to Ignorance the nature of the Unknowable.

“What is your religion my son?” inquired the Archbishop of Rheims.
“Pardon, monseigneur,” replied Rochebriant; “I am ashamed of it.”
“Then why do you not become an atheist?”
“Impossible!  I should be ashamed of atheism.”
“In that case, monsieur, you should join the Protestants.”

~~ Ambrose Bierce, The Devil’s Dictionary

:lol:
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If I don’t stop too long to think about it, this was fun…. It’s done, in any case, so, after a cursory check of the entire piece for obvious typos or errors of structure (can’t do anything now about the content, ffolkes, just deal with it….), I’ll try to get it posted, before I lose my nerve….. Fat chance of that, but, hey, it sounds good….

Well, I’ve seen better, and I’ve seen worse, so, it will do…. For what they are worth, you have my good wishes for a wonderful day….

Y’all take care out there,
and May the Metaphorse be with you;
Blessed Be, dearest  Carole, Mark, and Theresa…
and everyone else, too…

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,
and sometimes
I just sits.

gigoid

dozer3