We go now, in search of cognitive dissonance… heavily armed with oodles of insouciance, and eager to wage war with words. Let us then take a foray into the day, spreading the contagious joy of living……
Let us, then, be up and doing,
With a heart for any fate;
Still achieving, still pursuing,
Learn to labor and to wait.
— Henry W. Longfellow (1807-1882) — A Psalm of Life
Alrighty then, let’s have at it……
“With the first link, a chain is forged. The first speech censured, the first thought forbidden, the first freedom denied, chains us all irrevocably.” — Picard, ST:TNG, quoting a fictional judge, The Drumhead
One doesn’t often find profundity in Picard’s words, though he has one of the best voices for delivering such gems. This one seems timely, considering that we Americans just watched quietly as Congress passed another version of the Anti-Bill of Rights (aka, the Homeland Security Act), abridging even more of our Constitutionally guaranteed liberties. I find it reprehensible that the fear of terrorism that followed the attacks on 9/11 was used to justify an attack on the Constitution, and even fanned into flames, by the very people who are supposed to protect the liberties outlined in the Bill of Rights.
We no longer have the right to freely assemble to protest, unless we meet stringent regulations. Our telephone conversations are being monitored, both land-line and cell, for key phrases that would indicate terrorist activity. This law alone has caused a number of illegal arrests, which were made possible by the easing of the restrictions on police when performing searches. They now have the right to invade your home, just because they “suspect” terrorist activity. Racial and cultural profiling is rampant, and long-time citizens of this country are being harassed and vilified, just because they are Muslim, or “appear to be” Muslim.
What I’m saying here isn’t paranoia speaking. The incidents I’ve mentioned are all documented in the news. What disturbs me the most about the whole situation is that the American public isn’t protesting at all, not about what is important. Yes, it is the 99% who are perpetrating all these incidents of oppression, but that is normal; they’ve always done whatever they could get away with in their single-minded pursuit of most of the money in our pockets. The real danger lies in what they are doing to our basic liberties as outlined in the Bill of Rights.
They are accomplishing all this without censure, without oversight, and without conscience. I can only hope that enough people like me can shout it out loudly enough, and often enough, that the sheep out there masquerading as adult humans will become afraid of the correct enemy, to wit: those attempting to erode our rights. These are not necessarily the rich, though they are paying for it; these are the hired gunslingers of the rich, placed in power by virtue of the almighty dollar and their gift of Lies…….
“If a lie is repeated often enough all the dumb jackasses in the world not only get to believe it, they even swear by it.” — B.B. Franklin
“There is in human nature generally more of the fool than of the wise.” — Francis Bacon (1561-1626)
“Any hack can safely rail away at foreign powers beyond the sea; but a good writer is a critic of the society he lives in.” — Edward Abbey
Hmph! Seriousness. Hmph! Sobriety. A Jedi craves them not.
A limerick packs laughs anatomical
Into space that is quite economical.
But the good ones I’ve seen
So seldom are clean,
And the clean ones so seldom are comical.
If humanity has any hope at all, it rests in those parts of our nature that are often only seen in times of crisis. Courage. Loyalty. Compassion. Love. Creativity. Imagination. Introspection. Will. These are our finest qualities, the parts of us that are always in in harmony with the universe, and represent possibly our final hope for redemption.
In today’s complex world of the future, (thanks, Firesign Theater) we are bearing witness to the increasingly obvious symptoms of decay and dissolution exhibited by modern culture. Divisiveness in public affairs. Imminent economic turmoil caused by severe inequity across the board. Global warming and severe climatological changes caused by pollution of the air, land, and sea. Erosion of human rights. Threatening species extinctions occurring continuously. Damage to the bottom of the food chain, which will have effects that ripple and spread all the way to the top of the pyramid, ie., us.
The evidence for all of this is overwhelming, and the theoretical conclusions are approaching certainty; this planet, and the species that exist today, are what we like to call “one sick puppy”, and the prognosis for recovery is guarded and uncertain; death is very nearly certain without treatment of the causes, not the symptoms. At this point, its not a good bet…..
I’ll bet when you started on this little section, you thought it would be funny. Just goes to show how far you can trust words, doesn’t it? Even when the one speaking is on your side, as I am, you can never tell from outward appearances just what may lie hidden under the surface. It could be, as it is here, with the intent of contrasting and illuminating a desired point, a lesson, as it were. Or it could be that all that is going on here is another attempt to fool you into doing something you don’t necessarily agree with; this too, should be a familiar experience, as that is the most commonplace gift we receive from our beloved ruling class. What I’d like you to take from this, is a renewed attitude of personal responsibility for what we say and do; none of us will be free, if we do not free ourselves…….okay, here’s a little humor…..
“Truth … never comes into the world, but like a Bastard, to the ignominy of him that brought her forth.” — John Milton (1608-1674) (which throws light on the tradition of killing the messenger….)
“Being frustrated is disagreeable, but the real disasters in life begin when you get what you want.” — Irving Kristol
This being the case, it points out another disturbing issue regarding our political choices today. Obviously, it is our preference (what we want) that only those who are the most skillful liars are allowed the opportunity to lie to the public at large, a privilege befitting their exalted position as a member of the beloved ruling class. After all, we vote for them, don’t we? Every time there is an election, both parties sally forth with their distorted truths and distractions, all cleverly designed to deflect attention from what is actually happening, which is a contest to see whose particular set of untruths is given precedence until the next election. Then we get to do it all again, whether anything good or bad has happened, or not happened.
It all seems a bit silly, doesn’t it? Doesn’t it make you feel just the slightest bit of embarrassment at not only bending over, but for willingly supplying the lubricant for the perversions to which these…people… are subjecting us? Sometimes, I get so ashamed, I refuse to even leave the house on election day, for fear I’ll snap, and start haranguing prospective voters as they wander in to cast their programmed responses, telling them they were all going to hell in a handbasket, just as if I were a preacher, or a politician, or someone of that ilk…..
“If any man can convince me and bring home to me that I do not think or act aright, gladly will I change; for I search after truth, by which man never yet was harmed. But he is harmed who abideth on still in his deception and ignorance.” — Marcus Aurelius Antoninus (121-180 AD) — Meditations, vi, 21
It may have come to your attention that this seems to be a recurring theme here at Gigoid’s Folly. And you would be right in that. I’m scared, folks, and I don’t care who knows it (it just makes me more dangerous, not less). I’m scared to death that the degree of ignorance at work today in society is going to push us all into the path of the bulldozer of Extinction. I didn’t have children because I wanted to see them die, wallowing in the filth with which we have fouled our nest, choking on the air that is becoming thicker and more foul with each passing second. (Don’t believe me? follow this link to see just how fast we are killing ourselves…. http://www.poodwaddle.com/clocks/worldclock/ ) It’s getting to the point where I can see the muck in the air; look across a valley sometime, and see how much detail you can see across the way. In most of the world today, you would be lucky to be able to determine colors, but not shapes.
I reiterate. I’m scared. And I am monumentally pissed off, as well! Deliberately ignorant assholes are constantly filling the airwaves with the most egregious bullshite I’ve ever heard, and as an American who has witnessed election politics all my life, that is some pretty fancy doo doo. What right do these ignoramuses have that allows them to spew their fear and loathing all over the rest of us? And how long is the general public going to allow this kind of self-destructive behavior in the people who are supposed to be protecting and nurturing our growth? It’s already gone on far too long, and I sense that change is in the air…..kind of smells like gunpowder in the morning air, doesn’t it?……
How happy is he born or taught,
That serveth not another’s will;
Whose armour is his honest thought,
And simple truth his utmost skill!
— Sir Henry Wotton (1568-1639) — The Character of a Happy Life
Eureka! I have found the epitaph for my headstone, should I ever need one. This is me all over……this is not to say I’m perfect, far from it. But this is my picture of the ideal me, the prototypical me, from which all other possible me’s take their substance. It’s the kind of person I strive to be, even when I’m not. Even though I cannot yet spend all my time comfortably ensconced in the contented glow of this state of mind, I find it to be a most worthwhile goal for me to pursue. I shall go now and do so……
That went well, I think. It would no doubt be best now for me to stop doing this, and go do something else. One nice thing about both retirement, and freelance writing, and that is getting to make your own schedule, without having to worry about anyone or anything other than one’s own whimsy. We all could use a bit more whimsy in Life, wouldn’t you say? Y’all take care out there…..
P.S. I’m once again writing for Examiner.com, as the Oakland Examiner for Social Issues. You can find all my articles for them by following this link. Page hits and clicks on advertisements are how I get paid, so feel free to come back often. I hope you enjoy reading my work there as much as I enjoy creating it…..
Thanks again, and carpe that old diem!…..
Sometimes I sits and thinks,
I just sits.