Forlorn, empty of all hope, Barnabas Pettigrew trudged along the dusty highway, cursing every step with every breath, vowing to never again….. what? Blank, echoing vastness is all I see now, as Barnabas trudges along for no good reason, heading off into nowhere, presumably to give my head a good excuse for being up again at this ridiculous hour of the day…..
What is it about 3:00 AM that is so damned attractive, anyway? And why am I asking you? If I can’t figure out why my subconscious mind is out to get me, what chance will you have?…. Ah well, such is life in the blogosphere, where such absurdity may now be considered the norm, of sorts, for a great many otherwise stable personalities…. Honk, honk….
Now that the initial awkwardness is passing, let me ask you a question…. No, let’s change that…. Let me give you some advice…. No, that’s not a good idea; I forgot that my lawyer told me to stop doing that, or somebody was going to remember that I was the one who told them to do that, which might lead to more legal troubles than I already have….
Okay, so we’ll go another route…. if I can find one… I seem to be coming up against some kind of objection to every opening I’ve tried today. If I didn’t know better, I’d think that Murphy was hanging around, having fun, but, I happen to know he went on a short trip…. something about seeing a man about a dog, or something….
Hmm, now what? I’m unwilling to jump into just anything, or start on any subject at all today, at least, not here in the intro section, because, of late, whenever I do that, it turns into a rant; I’m trying to maintain a bit of discipline regarding structure, if at all possible, so almost anything that contains a shred of controversy is out, for the nonce.
(God, I LOVE that word!… “nonce”… and just LOOK at that sentence structure?…. Brilliant!…..I know, I’m strange…. deal with it, ffolkes, it’s too late to back out now; I’ve got your credit cards….)
It’s been so long since I tried to write about anything that WASN’T controversial, I’m finding it hard to even identify a subject worth investigating….. which isn’t all that surprising, given my usual fare here at ECR (for the uninitiated, that’s Exploring Consensual Reality, the actual title of this blog….).
I’m bored with this, which is a word I NEVER use…. Many moons ago, back before I even got into my teens, I made a conscious decision to eliminate boredom from my life, for the simple reason that it has no identifiable purpose, thus, it has no place in the life of anyone who uses their mind for more than merely existing.
To be bored, one must first admit that they are tired of what is going on in their own head, an admission I refuse to make…. In short, one must DECIDE to be bored; it doesn’t just happen because we walked into the wrong room. We have to make that conscious decision to feel the ennui that settles over us when we fall prey to this self-indulgence, so, I refuse to entertain any such thoughts, thus, avoiding the entire issue, with all its concomitant troublesome side-effects upon the emotions, and on the degree of turbulence we experience in our life….
So, there’s your advice for the day, okay? Are y’all happy now, you’ve tricked me into divulging such inanities before I’ve even purged my mind? I’ll bet you are, you silly monkeys….. For that, I’m going to have to punish y’all severely, or, perhaps, just a little? Or not…. You know, I’m thinking, at this point, I’d better just give up on this intro, and get on with today’s dive…. Yes, I think that would be for the best….
Shall we Pearl?…..
“By this story [The Fox and the Raven] it is shown how much ingenuity avails, and how wisdom is always an overmatch for strength.” — Phaedrus (c. 8 A.D.) — Book i, Fable 13, 13
The question immediately arises, “What does one who has neither ingenuity, nor strength, do to avail himself?”
Oh, plus, “What the hell does “avail” mean, in this instance? How much can a word’s meaning change in only 2000 years?”
“Power, like the diamond, dazzles the beholder, and also the wearer; it dignifies meanness; to what is contemptible, it gives authority; to what is low, exaltation.” — Charles Caleb Colton
I found this article tucked away in one of the lower sections of SFGATE, kind of like being on the next-to-last page in a newspaper, before the opinions, in the bottom corner of a page where nobody reads much…. I’m not sure why it’s buried there, because this subject is liable to be one of the more volatile that the court takes up this year, (though it hardly compares to the gay marriage issue, or the corporate personhood issue, both of which tend to bring out the worst in everyone….), because almost EVERYONE has feelings about TV… Almost all of us alive now DID grow up with it, so we have long-standing, firm ideas about how it should operate, and how it should be regulated, if at all….
First, read the article, then we’ll talk….
“Did you hear they removed the word gullible from the dictionary?” — Smart Bee
I will be watching closely to see how the Supremes handle this decision; it will go a long way toward identifying just how much corruption the justices have condescended to allow themselves to show to the public…. By that, I mean just what it sounds as if I mean…. It is my contention that the Supreme Court, along with many of the other levels of Federal courts (District, Circuit, etc…..) has been purchased outright by the bankers and shadowy corporate masters of society, to the point where they no longer even try to hide their predilection for making legal decisions that favor business over people, in almost every case that comes before them…
The conservative justices who were appointed to the various courts around the US by the two Shrubs are starting to make their insane power-hungry beliefs a matter of public record, making decision after decision that perpetuates the myth of corporate personhood, solidifying the idea that in this country, profit is guaranteed by law, protected from being altered or diminished by any such mundane factors as public wishes, or the concept of the common good in society….
This is how PAC’s have sprung into existence, those no-longer hidden bastions of corporate greed that throw money at all the elections they wish to influence, unrestrained by any limits on how much they can spend to bribe their chosen politicians…. This egregious display of ugly judicial, and political corruption, now legalized by the courts, illustrates exactly why this nation is now recognized by the rest of the planet as being a failed democracy….
This nation is now officially an oligarchy, bought and paid for by the rich, fat (headed, if naught else…), mostly white, misogynistic bigots, those shadowy slave masters, snakeheads by name, the real rulers of society, who spend their days telling the politicians what they want done….
“A criminal is a person with predatory instincts who has not sufficient capital to form a corporation.” — Howard Scott, Economist
Hell, some of them probably have posted lists, that show their lineup of Congressmen, Senators, and Federal Court judges who are on their payroll…. Maybe, all those pictures you see on the politicians’ walls, or those of CEO’s, with them posing with various public figures, are their way of posting the list of their acquisitions…. Makes sense to me…. Kind of like trophies, but they take up less space in the office….
Any who, now, the decision as to whether or not the big broadcast companies will have to actually live up to the deal they made, back before the Internet came along, is going to be made by the highest court (in THIS country); it will be very interesting indeed to see what direction it takes….
I don’t like to predict what the Supremes will do, because, if that court ever becomes predictable, then our form of government is finished…. Nobody should be able to say ahead of time what the court may decide; if it is predictable, then we have lost the balance on the bench that is required for them to remain objective about the law….
“Capitalism in the United States has undergone profound modification, not just under the New Deal, but through a consensus that continued to grow after the New Deal. Government in the U. S. today is a senior partner in every business in the country.” — Norman Cousins
Unfortunately, I’m thinking that in today’s world, it may just be that the court, the last hold-out against the corporate asininnies who would control us all, from cradle to grave, has been compromised, and will now begin the relatively short process of bringing this nation to its knees, in abject surrender to the forces of corporate avarice that control so much of our world. We’ll wait, of course, to see what takes place…. but, I’m pretty well convinced that we may have seen the last of real liberty in this country, and are now just waiting around to see when the revolution will begin, and how it will all fall out….
“Cheshire-Puss,” she began, “would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?”
“That depends a good deal on where you want to get to,” said the Cat.
“I don’t care much where–” said Alice.
“Then it doesn’t much matter which way you go,” said the Cat.
“–so long as I get SOMEWHERE,” Alice added as an explanation.
“Oh, you’re quite sure to do that,” said the Cat, “if you only walk long enough.”
— Lewis Carroll, “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland”
The ball is now in the Supreme’s court…. let’s see which way they go from here, shall we?….. I suppose, if we wait, or walk long enough, we’ll end up somewhere….
After ranting in such a sober fashion, a classic poem sounds like just the right next step for today…. Here is one that most of us have read, or seen, at one time or another in our lives, if only in sophomore English class…. I liked it then, and still do…. Enjoy!….
Death be not proud, though some have called thee
Mighty and dreadfull, for, thou art not soe,
For, those, whom thou think’st, thou dost overthrow,
Die not, poore death, nor yet canst thou kill mee.
From rest and sleepe, which but thy pictures bee,
Much pleasure, then from thee, much more must flow,
And soonest our best men with thee doe goe,
Rest of their bones, and soules deliverie.
Thou art slave to Fate, Chance, kings, and desperate men,
And dost with poyson, warre, and sicknesse dwell,
And poppie, or charmes can make us sleepe as well,
And better then thy stroake; why swell’st thou then?
One short sleepe past, wee wake eternally,
And death shall be no more; death, thou shalt die.
~~ John Donne ~~
Before I started today, I had already planted an old rant, of sorts, in this section, from last February, a discussion of ethics and morality that came out fairly well…. but, after the rant above, I thought it might be too much sobriety for one day, and nobody needs to be THAT dedicated…. Quality of life isn’t about having justice, though it is good to have that, but, rather, it’s about having experiences that improve our spirit, making us want to become better people, while learning to enjoy the process of doing so….
In light of that concept, we’ll go for an old-school pearl, with loose parameters to keep it from becoming too constricting, or judgmental…. We’ll shoot for ideas from other cultures that can meld with our own ideas, to help us become more complete human beings… which might be a lot to ask from a group of aphorisms, but, hey, we’re nothing, if not ambitious, around here, right?…. Right….
“You white people are so strange. We think it is very primitive for a child to have only two parents.” — Australian Aboriginal Elder
Happily may I walk.
May it be beautiful before me.
May it be beautiful behind me.
May it be beautiful below me.
May it be beautiful above me.
May it be beautiful all around me.
In beauty it is finished.
— Navajo (Anasazi) Night Chant
“Alas, reason is not effective against faith, or against searches for miracles by the desperate.” — Dr. Michael B. Shimkin
“There is no road or ready way to virtue.” — Sir Thomas Browne (1605-1682) — Religio Medici, Part i, Sect. lv
Remembrance and reflection how allied!
What thin partitions sense from thought divide!
— Alexander Pope (1688-1744) — Essay on Man, Epistle i, Line 225
“Who, being loved, is poor?’ — Oscar Wilde
Folly, thou conquerest, and I must yield!
Against stupidity the very gods
Themselves contend in vain. Exalted reason,
Resplendent daughter of the head divine,
Wise foundress of the system of the world,
Guide of the stars, who are thou then, if thou,
Bound to the tail of folly’s uncurb’d steed,
Must, vainly shrieking, with the drunken crowd,
Eyes open, plunge down headlong in the abyss.
— Johann Christian Friedrich von Schiller, The Maid of Orleans
Astounded, I stare into the mirror, wondering how I could ever have doubted serendipity…..
“My face is new, my license is expired, and I’m under a doctor’s care!!!!” — Zippy the Pinhead
Sometimes, the words Zippy gives us (Thank you, Bill Griffith!…) seem to connect to reality in my mind in a most satisfying, accurate fashion; this quote hits the nail squarely on the head for this morning, giving a quite exact description of my state of being after composing all of the above…. Save for the poem by Donne, and the authorship of the quotes, it’s all fresh, and well-purged, if I do say so myself….
Well, I feel better, anyway, so, I’m hoping that carries over into your life and times today, as well…. If not, well, I’m content; if you got even one chuckle, or even a querulous smile, from reading what I’ve written today, that will do nicely…. See y’all tomorrow, ffolkes….
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,
I just sits.
gigoid the dubious