~~ Plutarch ~~
(46-120 AD) — Life of Themistocles
I’d be willing to bang a few folks over the head, if only they would listen…. Sadly, ’tis not to be, and I am consigned to forever give my warnings, important to all as they are, to only a few diehard readers plucky enough to take my curmudgeonly style. It isn’t as if I’m saying much of anything that hasn’t been pointed out before; that is the whole problem, in a nutshell… The knowledge needed to save ourselves has been within the grasp of our hands all along, but, as the stupid, grasping, self-centered creatures most of us are, it mostly gets ignored, in favor of chasing after the latest fantasy held out by the corporate shills, which is guaranteed to make them happy….
It is as another blogger pointed out so accurately yesterday, people tend to put aside those things that aren’t palatable, or that don’t fit into their preconceived notion of how things must be, as not being real…. They believe completely in the foolishness they espouse, and will not usually even examine any evidence to the contrary; to do so they must first admit they were wrong in the first place, which is not going to happen…. ever. So, they continue to travel through their lives with blinders on, never realizing how little in their life they actually control, or that they are slaves, only living according to rules set up for them by others….
For some reason, I still love the idiots…. People are dumb, mostly, and blunder through life without much of a clue; it’s painful to watch, when I know they would have an easier time if only they would use their brain….. even just a little bit would help them make life better…. but, mostly, people ignore me, too, and go about the foolishness they’ve been accepting as truth all their lives, thus cementing further the hold the asininnies have over society, and ensuring we all will go down together, when our bill for services is presented, oh, day after tomorrow, or so….
Ah well, doing this helps a couple ways, if no others…. First, it makes me feel better… I stay saner, and that means fewer people per day are in danger…. always a good thing, right? Second, it does throw out there a lot of evidence, which, if they ever forgot, and looked at, well, it COULD do some good, if it happened to catch them in a weak moment, of which they have plenty…. I could get lucky, and one or more of them could have an epiphany, break the chains of mental bondage, and join the actual fight for survival going on out in the real world….
But, all that, no doubt, is a picture of me, fantasizing how it could, or should be, an occupation always fraught with danger, of believing any of it…. In truth, I’m fairly resigned to spouting off mostly to myself…. I have a couple of ffolkes with whom I can talk about this stuff…. Plus, there is a certain satisfaction, small though it may be, in preaching to the choir, who, at least, appreciate one’s thoughts, and for the most part, agrees…. It would be better, all around, for everyone, if the fools and idiots out there not paying attention to what is happening right in front of them would begin to pay some attention, and take some responsibility….. but, if I were you, I wouldn’t hold my breath….
Enough whining for one day; maybe there is a Gentle Reader out there waiting for today’s music, to which I can say, well, why wait? Today’s is a long concert, so, go turn it on, & listen while you read…. The rest of us can listen, as well, while I take us through some rather esoteric places today…. I also can say this….. LOOK! It’s a plane! It’s a bird! No, it’s just a pearl, waiting for us to pick it up….. It looks like a really good one, too, all about the depths of folly explored by Mankind….
Shall we Pearl?…..
IMPALE, v.t. In popular usage to pierce with any weapon which remains fixed in the wound. This, however, is inaccurate; to impale is, properly, to put to death by thrusting an upright sharp stake into the body, the victim being left in a sitting position. This was a common mode of punishment among many of the nations of antiquity, and is still in high favor in China and other parts of Asia. Down to the beginning of the fifteenth century it was widely employed in “churching” heretics and schismatics. Wolecraft calls it the “stoole of repentynge,” and among the common people it was jocularly known as “riding the one legged horse.” Ludwig Salzmann informs us that in Tibet impalement is considered the most appropriate punishment for crimes against religion; and although in China it is sometimes awarded for secular offences, it is most frequently adjudged in cases of sacrilege. To the person in actual experience of impalement it must be a matter of minor importance by what kind of civil or religious dissent he was made acquainted with its discomforts; but doubtless he would feel a certain satisfaction if able to contemplate himself in the character of a weather-cock on the spire of the True Church. — Ambrose Bierce, “The Devil’s Dictionary”
“One of the merits of democracy is quite obvious: it is perhaps the most charming form of government ever devised by man. The reason is not far to seek. It is based on propositions that are palpably not true — and what is not true, as everyone knows, is always immensely more fascinating and satisfying to the vast majority of men than what is true.” — H. L. Mencken
With this statement, Mr. Mencken has put his finger on the pulse of America, that is for certain. It goes a long way toward explaining why so many people in this country are so willing to believe the outright, egregious lies that are told to them every single day by the officials they elect every year at the polls that characterize our alleged republic…. They do lie, you know, with almost every statement that comes out of their mouths…. They begin with the most important lie they tell, from which all the others spring, and that is the lie they tell when they tell you that they want to be elected so they can work for YOU! Each and every politician learns early in their career, if they are at all to be successful, they MUST portray themselves as a public-spirited, honest, and tireless worker whose only purpose is to make life better for their constituents….
Of course, nothing could be further from the truth…. NONE of them are at all concerned with any of that nonsense; they are there to carry out their own agenda, which has very little to do with what is good for the general run of mankind…. No, they are there to serve the interests of the men and women who pay them, those lobbyists and special interest representatives who run the businesses of the corporate masters. The people on the street cannot provide them with the perks, or the cash, that the clandestine rulers are able to come up with, other than peripherally, by electing them in the first place…. Once elected, their true colors come out into the light of day, and it can be easily seen how their actions are never congruent with what they have promised to the people who elected them….
It’s all about power and money to these folks, not service. In my entire life of observing politics around the world, I have yet to see a single elected official who could be shown to be honest, not at the national level. The one who came the closest was Jimmy Carter, and his presidency was marked by how little got done, because he was so honest that the true politicians in Congress blocked every reform he tried to institute during his time in office. His actions during that time showed him to be the exception to the usual rule for politicians, which is why, I believe, he was so ineffective as a legislator….
“Invest in America — Buy Japan!”– Smart Bee
Other than Carter, I have seen concrete proof that EVERY President of this country has lied to the American people, not just once or twice, but continuously, about nearly everything. Time and time again, public outcries are heard or seen in the news about some new revelation regarding something some politician lied about, just like it is breaking news or something, when it is actually the normal state of affairs….
I don’t know why it is, but if a man on a TV set, wearing a suit and tie, makes a statement to the public, the general public will believe it, sometimes fanatically, without ever examining it for whether or not it is true…. Then, when it turns out they were lied to, they get all upset and vocalize their displeasure, never once admitting it was their own cupidity that allowed the lie to occur in the first place…. It makes me wonder what happened to people in this country, to make them go soft in the head….
“Doctors are the same as lawyers; the only difference is that lawyers merely rob you, whereas doctors rob you and kill you too.” — Anton Chekhov
Did you ever notice how many politicians were lawyers, first? Most of them, as it turns out, for the simple reason that learning to be a lawyer gives a politician two advantageous types of training…. One advantage is that law school teaches the student how to lie in every imaginable way, in order to ascertain which kinds of lies are legal…. The other advantage is their primary motivation….
If asked, a very large percentage of lawyers will tell you their reason for becoming a barrister in the first place is that it is a good way to get rich, (without mentioning, of course, that this is true only as long as one doesn’t give a shit about other people, and what that might do to them). In other words, they make their money by taking advantage of people’s misery, holding them as hostages against their own destiny, in order to gain resources, i.e. money, and its sidekick, power….
Then the lawyers realize that their training is perfect for politics…. The ability to lie with facility comes in very handy to anyone who wants to be in the public eye, as that is how one gets elected in the first place…. Tell people what they want to hear, and they will vote for you, every time, coming back to the same trough to eat, even though they get screwed, time after time…. Having the facility to ignore what happens to others, due to their own actions, is the other skill so important to the political set, and the training one receives as a lawyer fits right into that category….
“Watching the democratic party in a presidential contest is like watching a washing machine with a defective bearing: It starts up smoothly enough, but soon, it begins to wobble and shake, jumping violently from place to place, until it tears itself to pieces, spewing dirty laundry all over the room.” – Smart Bee
Some people will say that there ARE some good lawyers out there, and I won’t argue that…. but, they’re still lawyers, not politicians, aren’t they? They’re doing what they can to help ffolkes find their way through the morass of our legal system to get what they need, even occasionally finding some justice…. But, they aren’t going further, and going into public service, are they? They’re still in place, where they can help, but, they are so few and far between, they are hard to find, and so are very busy, seldom having the time or resources to work against their less honest colleagues. Plus, they really are very few in number, as altruists seldom become lawyers in the first place….
I can see that this has evolved into a full scale rant, and we’ve just begun the day, so I’ll call a halt here. I often feel as if I’m preaching to the choir, anyway, when I go through this stuff again…. It’s all familiar material around here, so it isn’t as if I’m presenting new ideas for your examination…. No, this is all old stuff, and, sadly, doesn’t seem to ever create the outrage that I feel in very many other ffolkes…. which is too bad…. I forget who said that “if you keep on doing things the same ways as you always have, things will always be the way they’ve always been….”, but, they were absolutely correct…. We are on a path to our own destruction, clearly, but, nobody seems to care.
Nobody, that is, who seems able to DO anything about it, and they are the ones who will need to make the changes…. The people in authority over the rest of us are wearing blinders in this respect…. The idea that what they are doing is wrong, and will eventually kill us all, doesn’t fit into their world-view, so they won’t believe it, and will continue to refuse to make any of the changes needed to re-direct our steps onto a path less dangerous.
It is up to the rest of us to get it done, and that may entail overthrowing the current crop of rulers, either by the vote, or by the less agreeable option of using the necessary force, while making sure the new crop will act in OUR best interests, rather than their own…. If it does happen, it will be the first time in history, which is fine with me…. just as long as it is not the LAST time in history….
“… democracy is not something you believe in, or a place you hang your hat, but it’s something you do. You participate. If you stop doing it, democracy crumbles and falls apart.” — Abby Hoffman
Welcome to the second day of music on ECR…. Today’s video is an EXCELLENT recording of Cream, Live at the Royal Albert Hall, their first concert in 36 years, since the band broke up in 1968…. This video, over an hour long, comprises the first half of the concert…. the second half will be aired on tomorrow’s blog, right here at Exploring Consensual Reality….
I know, it’s a lot to ask of y’all… to have to listen to three of the best rock musicians to ever play, both individually, as solo instrumentalists, but, also, as a group acknowledged one of the best ever, able to blend their talents seamlessly…. In this video, they play for well over an hour of live, brilliant, improvisational music from our past…. but, somebody has to do it, so, you’ll just have to do the best you can with it, okay?….
It’s one of those days I should probably use my own poetry, so nobody else suffers by association…. Since, of late, I’ve been beset by misery for much of each day, here is one I wrote back in 2012, about that very subject…. It usually helps, if I can focus on the last lines….
As old as you feel, we are told, is old as you are,
custom assures such vision will carry us far.
Reality begs to differ, may it be so bold
it is really quite painful, and very, very cold.
The power and strength felt in our halcyon youth
desert us with age, yet another unwelcome truth.
Irony rules our time here on this bountiful earth
as we reflect the changes over time since our birth.
As physical powers fade from this fragile shell,
we learn our mind can serve us quite as well.
The strength that once filled our bones and hearts
is now applied by our will, to more arcane arts.
Life’s greatest gift is our freedom of choice
no matter how often we forget, we still get a voice.
Energy, or apathy, by our will we may choose,
failing to do so, our only way to lose.
Each of us lives in the grip of time and space,
always seeking our balance, our own chosen place.
One must accept reality, for it is true at the core,
all we can do, is all we can do, and nothing more.
~~ gigoid ~~
Here is a fresh, random pearl, plucked from the current bed of oysters in SB’s newest version…. Enjoy!…..
“But my dear man, reality is only a Rorschach ink-blot, you know.” — Alan Watts
“One of the most important parts of being smart is the ability to let go of what you thought you knew so you can understand the way things are in a new way.”
— Esther Dyson
“Morals today are corrupted by our worship of riches.” — Marcus Tullius Cicero (106-43 B.C.)
“It’s wisdom to recognize necessity, when all other courses have been weighed, though as folly it may appear to those who cling to false hope.” — Elrond
“By a tranquil mind I mean nothing else than a mind well ordered.” — Marcus Aurelius Antoninus (121-180 AD) — Meditations, iv, 3
“How is one to live a moral and compassionate existence when one is fully aware of the blood, the horror inherent in life, when one finds darkness not only in one’s culture but within oneself? If there is a stage at which an individual life becomes truly adult, it must be when one grasps the irony in its unfolding and accepts responsibility for a life lived in the midst of such paradox. One must live in the middle of contradiction, because if all contradiction were eliminated at once life would collapse.There are simply no answers to some of the great pressing questions. You continue to live them out, making your life a worthy expression of leaning into the light.” — Barry Lopez, Arctic Dreams
“The Osmonds! You are all Osmonds!! Throwing up on a freeway at dawn!!!” — Zippy the Pinhead
Why Zippy seems to be our finishing pearl so often is a mystery to me, but, it probably shouldn’t be…. he is, after all, the work of one of the twentieth century’s finest social critics…. go figure…..
Some mornings this process goes more smoothly than others… such is the case today. It’s long, but, it’s done, and I can get on with fighting my daily battle with my bones, and, now, my inner ear…. I’ll be back tomorrow, ffolkes…. this is the only thing keeping me going just now…..
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
“The *only* duly authorized Computer Curmudgeon.”