Worn out spaces make forlorn faces…

5/18/2015
Ffolkes,

“It is a luxury to be understood.”

~~ Ralph Waldo Emerson ~~

Glasgow-Greenock Port 041

Sunrise? Sunset?

Does it matter?


Good morning…. I’m very late arising today; my battles with pain over the last few days caught up to me, & tumbled me down into a black hole of unconsciousness, I suppose. It’s happened before, when I get tired enough, the body rebels, and shuts off…. It feels pretty good, but, sure throws off the routine….

That said, I won’t blather too long here, just enough to let you know that today’s Pearl is going to be rather…. well, I can’t think of what it might be, as I don’t have too many priors at having to put one together this fast…. We’ll see how it goes, I guess… Let’s get right to it, ‘kay?….

Shall we Pearl?

“Know, first, who you are; then adorn yourself accordingly.”

~~ Epictetus ~~


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socrates

    Since whatever rant I come up with probably won’t be fresh, we’ll put a rantable video here…. Here’s one of the short diatribes from John Oliver, one of my favorite modern pundits…. Enjoy!….


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Last Week Tonight with John Oliver

Wealth Gap (HBO)

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Dont keep calm

    Here is an old rant of epic stature; this one was actually prepped to be published elsewhere, but, hasn’t yet been used in that fashion…. Enjoy!….

Created 12/6/2013:

Forlorn moments of epistemological apprehension….

The unconscious mind is a powerful thing, especially when its function spills over into the world of our conscious perceptions… Today’s title enters that twilight zone for certain…. Beyond that, this deponent sayeth naught, lest the quest to understand bring me to the brink of insanity. Let it suffice to know that, as far as the title of today’s Pearl goes, I wrought better than I knew, and leave it at that…. I think all of us will be happier in the long run…

Thus it begins…. the slow, inevitable corruption of morality always begins with a single manipulation, performed “in their best interests”…. In this particular case, we are only speaking of our philosophical intentions, rather than any connected to actual manipulation of events, or reality. But, that really doesn’t matter at all, because the corruption doesn’t know that, or care. The weather change whereof I speak happens in the heart of the manipulator, at the moment the decision is made to alter the truth in order to achieve a certain result. Once that decision is made, it is irrevocable, and further manipulations will follow, as certainly as it follows the air will be clearer after it rains….

In light of the simple fact that I’ve only consumed about four ounces of coffee so far, it might be a bit dangerous to start such a discussion, one with the apparent depth of this one. In fact, the subtle and complex arrangement of thoughts that brought this on seems to be fading from my mind as I sit here and type…. It seemed like a good idea when I started, but, somehow, it’s just a little too deep to dive into first off. I know what it is I was trying to say, but, I’m not sure, at this point, I have the wherewithal to say it with the right degree of clarity…. I’m thinking we’ll shift focus here, and go on to more appropriate material for an intro….

Not that philosophy, or, in this case, epistemology, a branch of philosophy that investigates the origin, nature, methods, and limits of human knowledge, is an inappropriate subject for that. it’s merely a bit too deep for my current state of intellectual comprehension to cope with efficiently, or more importantly, accurate…. I slept like a log last night, after a night of no sleep at all, and I’m a bit fuzzy thus far this morning; in this state, I’ll be lucky to be able to discuss the relevance of the wisdom of Daffy Duck, so, I think we’ll let the study of the meanings of human knowledge wait a bit longer before we try to take it on…. and, in the process, we’ll keep from making judgments about the morality of manipulation of that knowledge….

It’s too bad, really, as it will make a great beginning for an epic rant about the mess in Washington D.C., especially the current budget crisis, brought on by the immoral, not to mention ill-advised, manipulation of events, by a small group of fanatics who found themselves in a unique position, one of having more influence than their actual degree of relevance would normally command…. They took their opportunity in hand, and, being the truly ignorant bastards they are, used it for their own purposes, with complete disregard for the actual dictates of reality, or for the wishes and desires of their own constituents…. As far as I can tell, there isn’t a single point of view one can take in this that doesn’t end up exposing them to as immoral, and, in the final analysis, ignorant and selfish, with marked tendencies toward assholiness….

However, as it sits now, what has happened is that we’ve blathered enough to call THIS an introduction to that rant, even though it didn’t introduce anything other than a state of confusion… but, around here, that can be considered as the status quo for this time of day…. Okay, so this is where I stamp your papers, and say….

Shall we Pearl?…. In fact, let’s do it times three….

“The world is so constructed, that if you wish to enjoy its pleasures, you must also endure its pains. Whether you like it or not, you cannot have one without the other.” — Swami Brahmananda

“Life is not the way it is supposed to be. It is the way it is. The way you cope with it is what makes the difference.” — Virginia Satir

“A good friend, who points out mistakes and imperfections, and rebukes evil, is to be respected as if he reveals a secret of hidden treasure.” — Buddha

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First, a word from the Founding Fathers….

“I place economy among the first and most important virtues, and public debt as the greatest of dangers. To preserve our independence, we must not let our rulers load us with perpetual debt.” — Thomas Jefferson

Now, a bit of insanity, on the identical subject, from a more modern source…..

“By all accounts, though, an end seems near for the impasse that has once again exposed a government so divided that it sometimes borders on dysfunction. Though the House failed to muster sufficient support for a conservatives-only bill in the GOP-majority chamber on Tuesday, enough Republicans there seem likely to join House Democrats to approve a bipartisan version if it can be approved by the Senate and sent to them. “

http://www.sfgate.com/news/politics/article/Senators-closing-in-on-deal-to-reopen-government-4895884.php

I was reading the news last night, online, and the latest reports from the capitol say that a deal will get done prior to today’s deadline…. as it always does…. The difference in the deals that get done and those that don’t get done are relatively insignificant, in terms of real life; they only make a difference to those involved in whatever struggle is current. Nobody really understands any of it anyway… not the politicians who spout all the platitudes and figures, not the experts who supply the detailed analysis of those figures, and certainly not the public, who don’t even WANT to understand the complexities…. which is something the pundits know well, and, in fact, depend on to assist them in their endeavors…

“Morality is a private and costly luxury.” — Smart Bee

Sadly, this statement, though found without attribution, clearly was made by an observer who knows human nature well, one who has obviously observed our history closely, drawing from those observations the only possible conclusion…. Society, as exemplified by its leaders, in both the secular and clerical arenas, loudly and boldly tout the twin concepts of morality and ethics, laying claim to them as if they were a coat left lying about. The noise they make in making these claims is generally quite noisome, to my ears, but, serves to cover their asses when later accused of impropriety; they can point to their strident statements as being proof of sincerity, though, logically, sincerity and morality have no real connection, other than through the power of metaphor.

Pathetically sad as is the statement, it is also patently accurate, never more so than when looking at the budget crisis we are witnessing today. The assholes who inhabit Congress, especially the conservatives in the House of Representatives, ( an oxymoron, if I’ve ever heard one…. ), DO NOT represent the people who elected them, not even close…. They lie to them, they steal from them, they follow their own agendas, but, they DON’T represent them….

How can they? They are not even in the same economic class as most of them, and never have been…. and, please, DON’T try to tell me you don’t think we have economic classes in this society…. Sorry, ffolkes, but American society is NOT classless, and never has bee……. It has ALWAYS been separated into classes, based primarily on economic factors, with those who have more money having more influence and, more importantly, more rights, than those with less money…. The most cursory examination of history, of the world, and of this country, will show this as a fact of little possibility of dispute.

The average US income (which doesn’t give a completely accurate picture, but is useful to make the point….) is somewhere in the tens of thousands of dollars ($10,001 to $99,999, somewhere between the two….). This translates into a basic demographic breakdown of being a very few people making more than they can possibly use, as contrasted by a moderate number of folks comfortably content, though unsure of their stability, and a very large number of people who are struggling to even eat on a daily basis…. This accounts for 99% of the population, and about 1% of the actual money available to that 99%….

On the other side of that coin, we have a few thousand people, the remaining 1%, who have 99% of the money, all making more than a million dollars a year, on average. Of this tiny percentage, we find that ALL of the Senators, about half of the House members, and the President, of course, are all part of that 1% of the population, a part that has never had to worry about where their next meal came from…. I wish that this were not true, but, these are facts, with the supporting evidence available to anyone with a library card, which they can use to find these numbers….

Of course, the fact that they are “more successful” in economic terms is only proof, in their minds, of their inherent right to make the decisions for everyone else in the country, even though they have no real grasp of the needs of those people. The fact of their disconnection from reality cannot penetrate their sense of entitlement, and they fully BELIEVE in their own mandate…. “Somehow, it never hurts to step back occasionally and ask yourself “Am I contributing to the solution of the problem or aiding in making a bigger problem?”…. this is a process, and a question, that never occurs to them….

This is why I call them delusional, and can honestly claim that I believe them to be clinically insane; a person so disconnected to what is real cannot be considered sane…. except, perhaps, in an insane society. Making assumptions about having the right to decide about the wants and needs of others is a sure sign that one has an unreasonable belief in their own importance to the universe, an assumption that can only be termed as a delusion. This kind of behavior is one society cannot afford to allow, because, if nothing else, these types of delusions are dangerous to the rest of us. Allowing these “crazies”, for wont of a more accurate term, to act out their fantasies in the real world tends to lead to trouble for more than just themselves….

“Lord, Lord, how this world is given to lying! I grant you I was down and out of breath; and so was he. But we rose both at an instant, and fought a long hour by Shrewsbury clock.” — William Shakespeare (1564-1616), King Henry IV — Act v, Sc. 4

Aye, I’ll grant you, too, I’m down, and out of breath, from shouting into the wind, at the mountain…. A futile task, at best, I know, but, what else can one do at 5 AM? Mountain moving is my specialty, after all…. The truth of the matter is, after two hours by Shrewsbury clock, I’m tired of shouting at the mountain; it’s hard work, to little effect. I suppose it’s all I can do, and that is why I do it…. It’s cheaper, and, in the long run, less troublesome to my spirit and karma, than going out, buying a gun, and making a list of targets…. Less chance of getting shot back at, too….

There comes a time, however, when even I must admit to the futility of this particular task, and grow a bit discouraged…. I’m just not the kind of person who can give up completely, though, so, I’ll be back to rant on this subject another time…. “THEY” are always out there doing something on which I can comment. For the time being, I’ll leave you with this final lament….

“The world has taken on a thickness of vulgarity that raises a spiritual man’s contempt to the violence of a passion.” — Charles Baudelaire

Oh, and a hearty welcome to all the National Security Agency myrmidons who may, or may not, review this article! I guarantee, this one will waste your time quite well, following that time-honored government agency tradition of paying people for wasting time on unimportant bullshit, in an obviously illegal and immoral fashion, gathering data about stuff that is none of their business in the first place, but, hey, nice to have a job, right?…

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Comedy_Tragedy

Making Room

Our souls, they say, are like shapeless, infinite bags
in which we put all our pain, all our joyous wonder.
Broken hearts and thrilling love, riches to rags,
endless perceptions of serenity, and thunder.

‘Tisn’t simple, this spiritual journey to peace
memory is fickle, easily led astray;
darkness, ever lurking, without surcease
turning innocence to harm, from simple play.

Balance is the key.

Timing is everything.

Good can change bad, bad can change good.

Pain makes room for more joy in our souls.

The only power we need is the power to change ourselves.

~~ gigoid ~~


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buddah-out-to-lunch_s

    I’d call this a standard old-school pearl, with advice on Life at Large….

“It is not good for man to achieve all they wish.” — Heraclitus

“Every man is the architect of his own fortune.” [Faber est suae quisquae fortunae.] — Sallustius

“A wise man once said …”I don’t know.” — Smart Bee

The fool doth think he is wise, but the wise man knows himself to be a fool”.” — William Shakespeare, As You Like It — Act v, Sc. 1

“Once harm has been done, even a fool understands it” — Homer

“Avoid biting when a simple growl will do.” — Things We Can Learn From Dogs

“A man makes no noise over a good deed, but passes on to another as a vine to bear grapes again in season.” — Marcus Aurelius Antoninus — Meditations, v, 6

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It might be hard to believe by looking at it, but, this may have been the quickest Pearl ever produced…. Let’s get it posted, and be done with it, so I can go back to my ongoing battle with my own body…. See y’all tomorrow, ffolkes, if the gods continue to ignore me…

Y’all take care out there,
and May the Metaphorse be with you;
Blessed Be, dearest Carole, Mark,Theresa, & Richy
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, the dubious

PLEASE STOP READING THIS MESSAGE NOW.

“SCRAM!!!!!!!!!!”- Oscar the Grouch

Kowabunga!


À bientôt, mon cherí….


			
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Full portion meals on wheels….

Ffolkes,

DO NOT ADJUST YOUR MIND:

IT IS REALITY THAT IS MALFUNCTIONING

~~ Robert Anton Wilson ~~

Dont keep calm

    It is with some trepidation I sit today to begin; I’m late, I feel like shit warmed over, and I pretty much hate the world. This does not bode well for the remainder of the day, since it is now almost a full hour since I arose, an hour spent trying to piece together the shreds of my contentment, so brutally shattered by the soulless corporate interests which have enslaved 99% of the world’s population. Of that number, 99% of THEM haven’t even the remotest idea they are slaves,  living their lives according to the narrow set of strictures allowed by the overlords, thinking they have some kind of freedom of choice…

The sign you see above, which I stole from my friend Lou at Tales From The Conspiratum (I don’t know where he got it…. so much for attribution, eh?), says it quite appropriately, I think. If anyone wants even the slightest chance at surviving the coming apocalyptic collapse, predicted by too many sober, official agencies to ignore, they will need to throw aside the veil through which they have chosen to view life, and look directly into the evil faces of those who would see us all die, rather than given up the riches and power they have ripped from the rest of humanity. If they do not, they will go down to extinction, sinking into their graves without a whimper of protest, or even awareness of their own lack of courage, without any of the dignity which is congruent with such virtue.

I’m in just about the shittiest mood I think I’ve ever been in. My recent struggles with those corporate ghosts, who hide behind their money and power, afraid to show their true faces to the world, have put me here, for better or worse. I, for one, refuse to submit to their slavish demands for obedience to the norms they have decreed. I will not be a number, I will not be a slave, or a faceless bovine, shuffling through the fences they have built to keep the cattle penned, allowing them to dictate to me what they believe is in my interests, a complete lie they foster to keep the natives from becoming restless. I am a free man; they can try to control me, but, the only thing they will ever have the power to do, if they can, is to kill me, for I will NOT give in to their evil intent, which contains no possible benefit for anyone but themselves….. NOT going to happen….

Now I’ve convinced everyone I have slipped off the deep end, I think we’ll go on. In my current state, I would suggest no one attempt to touch me, or address me with anything other than cautious respect. The consequences are, shall we say, hard to predict, other than to say it would NOT be a pretty sight, and, when finished, NOBODY, myself included, would be happy about what had taken place. With that cautionary disclaimer fresh in your minds, let us be on our way to the oyster beds….

Shall we Pearl?

“You see things, and you say “WHY?” But I dream things that never were, and I say “WHY NOT?” — George Bernard Shaw, “Back to Methuselah”

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Given the state of my mood, I think it would be good to find something to soothe a fevered brow…. Ah, this will do…. If I can’t calm down in 10 hours, it just ain’t gonna happen….

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Celtic Music 10 hours

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We the People...

    Today’s rant will be a pearl of a different shade…. It will probably wander all over the map, taking pot shots at the AMA, FDA, Big Pharm, Big HMO’s, pundits, dogma dogs, corporate assholes, the 1%, and anyone else whose diseased minds are engaged in preying on the rest of humanity for the sake of their avarice and sociopathy, seeking ever more power and control over everyone else…. Which ever of them comes into my sight will be included for dissection, and hopefully, conviction…. Let’s see what we’ve got going on out in the Big Blue Room, shall we?…..

http://naturalsociety.com/marijuana-backed-studies-fda-approved-pharma-drugs/

“A quick search within the PubMed National Library of Medicine database for ‘marijuana’ turns up a host of studies, highlighting every aspect imaginable regarding the plant in its many forms. Some advocacy websites have even compiled hundreds of studies in an easy-to-read format surrounding marijuana, which has led numerous journalists to ask the obvious question: “why are we spending so much time researching an illegal drug for its numerous benefits while stamping side-effect-riddled drugs with the FDA stamp of approval with far less research?”

“An analysis of 200 FDA-backed pharmaceutical drugs even found that almost 33% of approved drugs were granted the approval over a single piece of clinical study”

gigoid says: Gee, ya think?

https://talesfromthelou.wordpress.com/2013/04/24/who-is-trying-to-patent-marijuana/

gigoid says: Is anyone surprised? I’m not….

http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2015/02/the-nsas-director-of-civil-liberties-disavows-secret-law/385150/?UTM_SOURCE=yahoo

gigoid says: Again, and it bears repeating, OF COURSE he did! Did anyone expect the chief of the biggest collection of spies in the world to tell them anything else? If so, they deserve exactly what they are getting….

Bah, humbug! I’m not in the mood, it seems, to rant, either. My anger and rage at the machine is so great today, I think it would be best to confine any further remarks to any pearls I can find to express the nature of my passion….. If I can do so, you’ll find them below…. If not, all you may find are pieces of my shattered mind, whimpering piteously as they writhe in the pain of futility…. Let’s see if I can save my sanity for at least a few more hours….. Here are nine pearls, which either comment on those who prey on their brothers and sisters, or, advise how to deal with the fact of their existence…. sort of…

“I have formed a very clear conception of patriotism. I have generally found it thrust into the foreground by some fellow who has something to hide in the background. I have seen a great deal of patriotism; and I have generally found it the last refuge of the scoundrel.” — G. K. Chesterton, The Judgment of Dr. Johnson, Act III

“Independent self-reliant people (would be) a counterproductive anachronism in the collective society of the future […] (where) people will be defined by their associations.” — John Dewey (1859-1953), educational philosopher, — proponent of modern public schools. 1896 — “The Tyranny of Government Schooling”, John Gatto, 1992

“Of course the US Constitution isn’t perfect; but it’s a lot better than what  we have now.” — Eric Sheppard

“All warfare is based on deception. Therefore, when capable, feign incapacity; when active, inactivity. When near, make it appear that you are far away; when far away, that you are near. Offer the enemy a bait to lure him, feign disorder and strike him. When he concentrates, prepare against him; where he is strong avoid him. Anger his general and confuse him. Pretend inferiority and encourage his arrogance. Keep him under strain and wear him down. When he is united, divide him. Attack where he is unprepared; sally out when he does not expect you. These are the strategist’s keys to victory. It is not possible to discuss them beforehand.” — Sun Tzu, The Art Of War

“A casual stroll through the lunatic asylum shows that faith does not prove anything.” — Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche (1844-1900)

“When Thales was asked what was difficult, he said, “To know one’s self.” And what was easy, “To advise another.”” — Diogenes Laertius (c. 200 AD)
— Thales, ix

“When a stupid man is doing something he is ashamed of, he always declares that it is his duty.” — George Bernard Shaw (1856-1950), “Caesar and Cleopatra”, Act III

“Every day should be passed as if it were to be our last.” — Publius Syrus (42 BC) — Maxim 633

“Every man is free to rise as far as he is able or willing, but it’s only the degree to which he thinks that determines the degree to which he’ll rise.” — Smart Bee

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Here is an older poem of mine; it isn’t about the weather, despite what the title implies….

November Dreams of Spring

Crass and cold, the beggar finds me swollen, so frail and fat
with painful stepping motions, running, like a Republicrat.
Building with straw and spittle, should artists come aground,
we all pay heavily, a billion for a bloody pound.

Too desperate, too ashamed to play such a part
We ask for belief, and sweet liberty, dressing up so smart.
It falls between the simple cracks, always in a hurry
To find a shrunken ego, ashen, swift, and full of worry.

Never there was a more penitent group, such a sterling way
To fast in luxury, making sure the guilty enter, but do not stay.
Forgotten gods can find their diffident suitors tonight
With dream-fitted convention, and a natural sense of delight.

For all the silken babies cried, to see the broken dreams of power
forgiven moments of certitude serve, filling up the maiden’s bower.
All the patient, loving veterans of ancient foreign time,
give up their first impressions, dying, dying for a rhyme.

~~ gigoid ~~


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Today’s final offering is a collection of pearls….. Well, since my mind is not sure of anything just now, I guess I won’t try to tell you what they all mean, either individually, or, as a group…. The only desirable characteristic I insisted upon was to have them all say SOMETHING useful…. Wish me luck….

“…and I get on my knees and pray we don’t get fooled again.” — Pete Townshend

“For a real long time, scholars debated whether the Earth revolves around the sun, or, if it was actually the center of the universe. I offer the question: Who really cares?” — John Young, AP Earth Science

“Never to have changed – what a pitiable thing of which to boast!” — Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

“The only really decent thing to do behind a person’s back is pat it.” — Smart Bee

“History is a lie commonly agreed upon.” — Nietzsche

“Do not speak of what men deserve.   For we each of us deserve everything, every luxury that was ever piled in the tombs of the dead Kings, and we each of us deserve nothing, not a mouthful of bread in hunger. Have we not eaten while another starved?  Will you punish us for that?  Will you reward us for the virtue of starving while others ate?  No man earns punishment, no man earns reward.  Free your mind of the idea of *deserving*, of *earning*, and you will begin to be able to think.” — Odo, The Prison Letters (Ursula LeGuin, _The Dispossessed_)

“The gods too are fond of a joke.” — Aristotle (384-322 B.C.)

Well… there you go. I don’t think I could have done better if I’d tried…. so be it.

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Having thus discharged what I have chosen as duty, I’ll take my leave now. Today’s effort was just that; an effort. It’s done, though, so, I can get on with the rest of today, with whatever new challenges the universe has for me to deal with, to accept, or deny. Maybe I’ll go back to bed…. Either way, if I can make it that far, I’ll see y’all tomorrow, ffolkes…..

Y’all take care out there,
and May the Metaphorse be with you;
Blessed Be, dearest Carole, Mark,Theresa, & Richy
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, the dubious

PLEASE STOP READING THIS MESSAGE NOW.

“SCRAM!!!!!!!!!!”- Oscar the Grouch

dozer3


À bientôt, mon cherí….


Twistin’ the night away….

Ffolkes,

“Do not meddle in the affairs of wizards, for they are subtle and quick to anger.”

~~ J.R.R. Tolkien ~~

andromeda-meteor-james

    Today’s picture is from Space.com, one of their Astronomy Picture of the Day features, a gorgeous shot of the Milky Way, meteors, and the Andromeda Galaxy (small but clear in the upper right quadrant…), all in one huge photo, taken as a panorama, I believe. All I know is it was so big, it took about eight adjustments to get it small enough to fit onto the screen…. At the larger size, it’s pretty incredible in detail, almost like being outside, looking at it directly…. The photographer was, no doubt, a photographic wizard, along the lines of the quote from Tolkien….

Or, maybe he/she just got lucky, timing it so perfectly by chance…. Unlikely, with a panoramic photo, but, one never knows, nor would one ever speculate, not so early in the morning, before the second sip of coffee has been taken…. On sip only ensures no one will die; the second sip provides a certain degree of coherency, which doesn’t extend to the keyboard, sadly…. Nor does it preclude the hands from screaming at me for typing, which, unfortunately, they seem to want to do today…. Bogus, really, and it sure makes this part difficult…. Break time, ffolkes…

Now that the tenor of today’s post has been set, and, just as quickly destroyed, by the not-totally-unexpected display of bozoid candor, perhaps we can get on with this with no more detours. That would be a nice change, wouldn’t it? Sure it would…. but, as you may have guessed, it ain’t gonna happen here. I believe we may have reached a point that would otherwise be called a nexus, or, just as accurately, a bloody mess; some sort of decision must be made as to where we are going today, if anywhere at all…. Wait!….

That’s the best idea I’ve had yet…. I’m going to end this right here, right now, and get on with it, just as if it were made that way…. Perhaps, if we pretend it’s supposed to work like that, we can slip past the censors, and get this done in some sort of timely fashion…. Or, alternately, some sort of approximation of timely would be acceptable, whatever that may mean in such a situation…. Your guess is as good as mine, in this case… So….

Shall we Pearl?

“The difference between a moral man and a man of honor is that the latter regrets a discreditable act, even when it has worked and he has not been caught.” — Henry L. Mencken

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An old Grateful Dead tune has been running around my mind all morning, ever since I first booted up…. It’s from their song, “Sugar Magnolia”, and goes, “Head’s all empty, and I don’t care….” However, rather than the Dead, let’s go with a live concert by Jerry, and his old friend, David Grisman, his mandolin-playin’ genius buddy, from 12/8/1991….  Enjoy!…. No video on this one, but, great music….

Jerry Garcia & David Grisman – San Francisco 12 8 91

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I’m still saving my hands for other stuff, so, here is an archived rant, of fairly typical size and content….

From 2/25/2013:

“I used to think it was awful that life was so unfair.  Then I thought, wouldn’t it be much worse if life were fair, and all the terrible things that happen to us come because we actually deserve them?  So, now I take great comfort in the general hostility and unfairness of the universe.”– Marcus, Babylon 5

Marcus brings up an interesting point here, when he talks of the general hostility of the universe. I don’t think he quite has a handle on the actual shape of Reality, though, and in his desire to avoid responsibility for his own cupidity, he assigns the universe as villain in his play. Our universe isn’t hostile to us, as he would like to think. Unfair? Yes. Hostile? No…. The universe really doesn’t give a crap about us, one way or another. Things seem unfair, not because they are stacked against us, but rather because they are not stacked in our favor, a slight but distinct difference…..

Reality plays no favorites, beyond a tendency to allow itself to be adjusted by those who have an understanding of how it works, without granting them any dispensation, but rather rewarding their cleverness and wit. Those who believe the universe is out to get them are defenseless against the trials and tribulations that are a natural part of living, because they begin from an attitude of helplessness. Those who at least have the confidence to act in their own behalf are much more able to achieve their goals, than anyone who allows Reality to push them wherever they end up, without any direction made by choice…..

Thus, we can see that courage, as well as knowledge, is necessary to being able to confront Reality on its own terms. Not only is it necessary to pay attention to the way the universe works, and how it interacts among all its parts, but necessary to have the courage to act on what is known, and what the person believes to be right, in a moral sense. Of course, the universe doesn’t care one way or another if we are moral; it rewards those who act out of immorality as well, if they are bold enough to act. We just feel better about ourselves if we act from right thought, and we make it easier for others to do the same. Acting immorally only benefits the one who is doing the acting…..

But, cowardice is also rewarded by the universe; it just isn’t a very palatable reward, to have our every wish denied, and our every act dismissed, as incompetent, illegal, or just plain dumb….. Lack of courage, and lack of knowledge thus become their own rewards, and the person’s misguided views about reality lead them into issue after issue of conflict with the rest of reality. In this way, they continually reinforce their own misapprehensions, and will only more firmly believe that the universe is out to get them, and everyone else…. This, in spite of the fact that they are looking at, and dealing with, the same Reality as everyone else, who don’t all seem to have the same problem…. Instead of giving them a clue that maybe they should do things differently, they merely assume that the other people have cheated them somehow…. because that is what they would do….

It’s really too bad in some ways, that so large a percentage of humanity is so lacking in courage and wit as to find the view stated above to be congruent with their own view of the way the universe operates; it’s part of what makes it so easy for those in the BRC and the 1% to control them, and to pull the wool over their eyes. These folks are so convinced of their own helplessness in the face of all they don’t understand, they will latch onto almost anything someone tells them, if it soothes their fears, and gives them someone or something other than themselves to blame for their misfortunes…. Sad, but true, and a perfect description of what has transpired in society for several thousand years now, as the BRC keeps the majority of humanity in the proverbial dark about what is true, and what is real….. They’ve had a lot of practice, and they’re very good at it….

But, then, it isn’t hard to control someone who is brainwashed to believe that it is the way reality is, so I can’t say it is due to any particularly large degree of wit or talent that allows them to do so…. It is more that the folks who they control are so stupid, they ask to be controlled, because they can’t, and more importantly, won’t, trust themselves to do it….. Sad, but true….

At his point in this narrative, I am becoming a bit enraged, a not uncommon reaction to a rant about the BRC and the 1%…. Heck, this time, I didn’t even have to mention the papists or preachers who are their shock troops, on the front lines of the brainwashing process, in order to get upset and angry over their machinations…. until now. My rage is growing, as it always tends to do when I start to rant on this subject, and I’m not ready to deal with the consequences of letting it get any bigger right now…. too much other stuff to get to today. But, just let me say this…..

Those in our society who deliberately control others for their own benefit are my enemies. I believe them to be responsible for virtually ALL of the social ills we have, as well as the global and environmental issues that are threatening our very survival as a species. They are, for their own personal benefit, hoarding the resources of the planet, and refusing to share them with the remainder of humanity, all because they can, and they want to. The welfare of others is of no concern to them, so they automatically become my foes, in my battle to try to make a world my children, and grandchild, can have the opportunity to live a full and complete life of their own, without being oppressed and controlled by assholes who don’t give a shit about anyone but themselves….. As my old martial arts instructor used to say…. “Fuck ’em….. hard.”…..

— “Bother!”, said Pooh, as he dropped his bombs.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Today’s poem is another I found in the archives, which hadn’t been brought into the Poetry folder…. bonus! Enjoy!

From 8/21/2012:

Unwrapped Morning

A jewel of deepest green, sparkles by firelight
Held fast by time, and space
Leaves only passive passion, pale and bright
Naught but grief, yet but a trace.

In morning’s bright parlor, burning for hate
Unspent moments fall, seeking pain
Spilling blood forlornly, cowed by fate
Left with nothing, life in vain.

Pallid purpose calls, to that fallow ground
In bold fashions, aflame
Conscience falls aside, value unbound
Death calls, forever lost, the game……

~~ gigoid ~~


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Today’s final pearl was constructed in spite of some rather stiff resistance from SB…. I swear, it’s been a complete butthead of late, making me go through several hundred useless phrases and quotes, just to find a couple of mediocre pearls…. Ah well, at least we squeezed one last batch out for today…. It was looking a bit grim there for a while, but it came out just fine… a real old-school pearl, with a nice little twist to make it palatable for even the neuronically challenged reader…. Just don’t grit your teeth, or your dentist won’t like it….

“For water continually dropping will wear hard rocks hollow.” — Plutarch (46-120 AD) — Of the Training of Children

“The purpose of a fish trap is to catch fish, and when the fish are caught, the trap is forgotten. The purpose of a rabbit snare is to catch rabbits. When the rabbits are caught, the snare is forgotten. The purpose of words is to convey ideas. When the ideas are grasped, the words are forgotten. Where can I find a man who has forgotten words? He is the one I would like to talk to.” — Chuang Tzu

“The young know the rules, the old know the exceptions.” — Smart Bee

“The important thing is not to stop questioning.  Curiosity has its own reason for existing.  One cannot help but be in awe when he contemplates the mysteries of eternity, of life, of the marvelous structure of reality.  It is enough if one tries merely to comprehend a little of this mystery every day. Never lose a holy curiosity.” — Albert Einstein

“A man must consider what a rich realm he abdicates when he becomes a conformist.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882)

“Don’t take life too seriously; you won’t get out of it alive.” — Hubbard’s Law

“Imagine the Creator as a low comedian, and at once the world becomes explicable.” — H. L. Mencken (1880-1956)

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

If all things in the world were equal, this would be considered as not eligible for judgment. I’m not entirely certain just how it got done, but, there it sits, with all the correct categories covered, and each section filled with (relatively) appropriate material…. As we are fond of saying, in the back rooms, where nobody can hear us, “It’s done”…. We say that with a reverent air, closing our eyes in respect, while genuflecting vaguely in the direction of Patagonia….

The appearance at this point of such nonsense is a clear indication it’s time to stop for the day, lest we splash…. See y’all tomorrow, ffolkes, should the Universe still be here….

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, the dubious

PLEASE STOP READING THIS MESSAGE NOW.

Kowabunga!


À bientôt, mon cherí….


					

All quiet on the western omelet….

Ffolkes,

I am never sure how one of these Pearls will turn out, due to several factors, the most telling of which is my refusal to plan them out from one day to the next; I’ve always insisted on using either fresh material, or material I created previously, from the archives here on WP, or my own backup copies here on Arthur’s hard drive (my computer’s name is Arthur, after the Dudley Moore character….Yes, it was whimsical….). Today’s Pearl may be the most different yet, as it will have been constructed under the most trying of conditions possible for me to imagine…

Yep, my coffee machine broke today…. This, of course, could have been a major disaster, which is, I’m sure, exactly what Murphy planned when he sabotaged the heating element…. (He tried to hide the fact of his chicanery… when I came out, and pushed the button to start the coffee maker, the light went on, just as if it were going to work…. but, three minutes later, no hot water, and an obviously dead machine….). However, having slept well, again, thanks to my new regime of night time medications that work like a charm, I didn’t panic at all…. I merely reached down, grabbed a sauce pan, heated water, and poured it through myself, then made a note to go by a store for a new machine later today….

It’s amazing how clear one’s head is when one actually sleeps during the night…. It has been so long since I had any consistent sleep, I’ve forgotten how it feels in the morning, which, to put it most simply, is wonderful…. clear-headed, and without unending waves of pain crashing through my awareness, demanding attention as soon as I am up, to begin the daily fight with gravity to remain upright…. What a bonus! There is pain, yes, but it is manageable, and responds well to the morning routine I’ve evolved…..

It is no doubt a mite confusing for y’all here today…. Y’all are probably as unused to my NOT complaining about my pain, or Murphy, or whatever issue has arisen upon my ascendancy from bed ( I’ll bet y’all are especially weary of hearing about my fears of the blank screen….), as I am unused to NOT having anything about which to whine…. It’s actually quite nice…. even fun…. Who the hell am I kidding? I’m boring myself to tears with all this nicey, nicey crap!….

Fuck it, I’m outta here, before I turn into a Pollyanna, and start writing love poems….

Shall we Pearl?….

“Great acts are made up of small deeds.” — Lao Tzu
_____________________________

I’ve got rants in me today; I could easily turn all this goodwill I’m experiencing today into angst. All I’d need to do is go look through some headlines, & voilá! Instant outrage…. But, my precursor mood isn’t quite right to get me there, at least not yet today (It IS only 0430….)…. So, I’m going with the newest format, combined with some random pearls, chosen to replace any long-winded comments from me, for a new effect…. We’ll see how it works, and possibly include it again in future Pearls…. for now, enjoy the craziness that is our society at large, in action….

First, two statements that are the perfect opening pearls for this set of headlines….

“God is an invention of Man. So the nature of God is only a shallow mystery. The deep mystery is the nature of Man.” — Nanrei Kobori, — late Abbot of the Temple of the Shining Dragon, Kyoto, Japan

“Is being an idiot like being high all the time?” — Janeanne Garofolo

http://www.sfgate.com/crime/article/Ex-parks-ranger-sues-CHP-officer-over-use-of-force-5234039.php

“With tooth and nail.” — Du Bartas (1544-1590) — Divine Weekes and Workes, Second Day

Is there any worse temper displayed, (other than the fabled “woman scorned”, of course….) than that of one whose sense of entitlement has been usurped? If so, I’d like to know what it is, as it may be the absolute champion of all such egregiously stupid, and selfish attitudes that anyone can assume…. Yet, here we have, in this country, literally, MILLIONS of idiot assholes, such as the ones in this story, who harassed the officer who upheld the law at the expense of their peer, the speeding asshole…. Yes, there are millions of other, even stupider assholes manning the wheels of innumerable police cars in our cities, counties, and towns, driving around with their attitudes on full display…. When was the last time you observed an officer of the law making a legal turn signal?…. Yep…. I can’t remember, either….

http://blog.sfgate.com/techchron/2014/02/13/comcast-net-neutrality/

“Accumulate mannequins now; spare parts will be in short supply on D-Day.” — Safety Tips for the Post-Nuclear Existence

This article is here just so I can say I included something about the SCM’s, whom I believe to be the MOST responsible parties when it comes to assigning blame for the condition of our planet…. This story shows just how little the common man has to say in just about anything in society….. Here we have two more faceless corporate entities joining forces, with the end result one of increasing the degree of control each of them has over US…. the Internet is the McGuffin in this picture; it’s what they WANT us to focus on…. Yes, they want to control the Internet, but that is merely because it is a tool that helps US to learn more about what they’re up to…. thus, stealing control of it ensures they maintain the death-grip they have on our slave collars….

Need more evidence? Here:

“Another doctor reports that in a recent issue of the *American Journal of Family Practice* fleas were called “hematophagous arthropod vectors.” — Smart Bee

http://www.sfgate.com/business/article/Study-says-fracking-releases-more-methane-than-5233422.php

“…it doesn’t matter how beautiful your theory is, it doesn’t matter how smart you are — if it doesn’t agree with experiment, it’s wrong.” — Richard P. Feynman

“Fracking releases more methane than previously thought”…… Oh? Really? No kidding? Well, there’s a surprise, eh? Another fucking asinine method for ripping resources from the planet’s crust, using previously untested technology, and it’s causing more damage than we realized? Now, who would have guessed that?

If you haven’t realized yet that these are angry, rhetorical questions, then, you may as well go read somewhere else, because you’re just not getting it, or not paying attention, ffolkes…. The assholes who run the world don’t CARE if they fuck up the planet…. They believe they’re immune to the results of what they do…. dying is for the little people, don’t y’know?….. Bah! This one makes me so angry, I can barely speak, and certainly can’t write very well, so I’ll just call them assholes one more time, and let it go at that…. Fucking assholes….

“Where are we going? And why am I in this damn handbasket?” — Smart Bee, at gigoid’s instigation….

http://www.sfgate.com/news/politics/article/Ron-Paul-starts-Snowden-clemency-petition-5235280.php

“I’m all in favor of the democratic principle that one idiot is as good as one genius, but I draw the line when someone takes the next step and concludes that two idiots are better than one genius.” — Leo Szilard

I’d never in my life have ever thought I’d agree on ANYTHING with this guy, but, well, there you go…. The reasoning behind our opinions here are, very likely, completely at odds, but, we seem to have reached the same conclusion, to wit: Eric Snowden is NOT a traitor, but, rather, a hero, and should  be brought home in honor, not restraints…. In this particular instance, I don’t really CARE that I’m apparently getting into bed with one of the country’s most insane talking heads, a professional politician who turned his vocation into his legacy, making his son a hereditary politician, as well as a professional one. He got this one right, and he’s the first one to come out in public with this, in the face of the administration, so, in this at least, he has my support….

Yuck…. They were right when they said that politics makes for strange bedfellows…. And, now, I feel a little ill….
_____________________________

One of my email services sent this poem to me a few days ago, so I saved it for just an occasion such as this, when my spirit is in need of something along a classical line….. and, please, no relevance to current events, either….. I just want to get away for a moment or two…. This is a good one for that….. Enjoy!

A Crazed Girl

THAT crazed girl improvising her music.
Her poetry, dancing upon the shore,

Her soul in division from itself
Climbing, falling She knew not where,
Hiding amid the cargo of a steamship,
Her knee-cap broken, that girl I declare
A beautiful lofty thing, or a thing
Heroically lost, heroically found.

No matter what disaster occurred
She stood in desperate music wound,
Wound, wound, and she made in her triumph
Where the bales and the baskets lay
No common intelligible sound
But sang, ‘O sea-starved, hungry sea.’

~~ William Butler Yeats ~~

_____________________________

I was going to include an old-school pearl here, but, found this old politirant, from almost exactly a year ago, and thought it would make a good piece to demonstrate some of why it makes me ill to have to agree with Ron Paul, as noted above…. This will explain that delicacy quite well, I should think, and if not, well, you can always read it twice….

From 10/17/13:

First, a word from the Founding Fathers….

“I place economy among the first and most important virtues, and public debt as the greatest of dangers. To preserve our independence, we must not let our rulers load us with perpetual debt.” — Thomas Jefferson

Now, a bit of insanity, on the identical subject, from a more modern source….

“By all accounts, though, an end seems near for the impasse that has once again exposed a government so divided that it sometimes borders on dysfunction. Though the House failed to muster sufficient support for a conservatives-only bill in the GOP-majority chamber on Tuesday, enough Republicans there seem likely to join House Democrats to approve a bipartisan version if it can be approved by the Senate and sent to them. ”

http://www.sfgate.com/news/politics/article/Senators-closing-in-on-deal-to-reopen-government-4895884.php

I was reading the news last night, online, and the latest reports from the capitol say that a deal will get done prior to today’s deadline…. as it always does…. The difference in the deals that get done and those that don’t get done are relatively insignificant, in terms of real life; they only make a difference to those involved in whatever struggle is current. Nobody really understands any of it anyway… not the politicians who spout all the platitudes and figures, not the experts who supply the detailed analysis of those figures, and certainly not the public, who don’t even WANT to understand the complexities…. which is something the pundits know well, and, in fact, depend on to assist them in their endeavors…

“Morality is a private and costly luxury.” — Smart Bee

Sadly, this statement, though found without attribution, was made by an observer who knows human nature well, one who has obviously observed our history closely, drawing from those observations the only possible conclusion…. Society, as exemplified by its leaders, in both the secular and clerical arenas, loudly and boldly tout the twin concepts of morality and ethics, laying claim to them as if they were a coat left lying about. The noise they make in making these claims is generally quite noisome, to my ears, but, serves to cover their asses when later accused of impropriety; they can point to their strident statements as being proof of sincerity, though, logically, sincerity and morality have no real connection.

However, sad as the statement is, it is accurate, and never more so when looking at the budget crisis that we are witnessing today. The assholes who inhabit Congress, especially the conservatives in the House of Representatives, ( an oxymoron, if I’ve ever heard one…. ), DO NOT represent the people who elected them, not even close…. They lie to them, they steal from them, they follow their own agendas, but, they DON’T represent them…

How can they? They are not even in the same economic class as most of them, and never have been…. and, please, DON’T try to tell me you don’t think we have economic classes in this society…. Sorry, ffolkes, but American society is NOT classless, and never has been…. It has ALWAYS been separated into classes, based primarily on economic factors, with those who have more money having more influence and, more importantly, more rights, than those with less money…. The most cursory examination of history, of the world, and of this country, will show this as a fact of little possibility of dispute.

The average US income (which doesn’t give a completely accurate picture, but is useful to make the point….) is somewhere in the tens of thousands of dollars ($10, 001 to $99,999, somewhere between the two….). This translates into a basic demographic breakdown of being a very few people making more than they need to survive, as contrasted by a very large number of people who are struggling to even eat on a daily basis…. This accounts for 99% of the population, and about 1% of the actual money available to that 99%….

On the other side of that coin, we have a few thousand people, the remaining 1%, who have 99% of the money, all making more than a million dollars a year, on average…. Of this small percentage, we find that ALL of the Senators, about half of the House members, and the President, of course, are all part of that 1% of the population, a part that has never had to worry about where their next meal came from…. I wish that this were not true, but, these are facts, with the supporting evidence available to anyone with a library card, so they can go there to look up the numbers….

Of course, the fact that they are “more successful” in economic terms is only proof, in their minds, of their inherent right to make the decisions for everyone else in the country, even though they have no real grasp of the needs of those people. The fact of their disconnection from reality cannot penetrate their sense of entitlement, and they fully BELIEVE in their own mandate…. “Somehow, it never hurts to step back occasionally and ask yourself “Am I contributing to the solution of the problem or aiding in making a bigger problem?”…. this is a process, and a question, that never occurs to them…

This is why I call them delusional, and can honestly claim that I believe them to be clinically insane; a person so disconnected to what is real cannot be considered sane…. except, perhaps, in an insane society. Making assumptions about having the right to decide about the wants and needs of others is a sure sign that one has an unreasonable belief in their own importance to the universe, an assumption that can only be termed as a delusion. This kind of behavior is one society cannot afford to allow, because, if nothing else, these types of delusions are dangerous to the rest of us.  Allowing these “crazies”, for wont of a more accurate term, to act out their fantasies in the real world tends to lead to trouble for more than just themselves…..

“Lord, Lord, how this world is given to lying! I grant you I was down and out of breath; and so was he. But we rose both at an instant, and fought a long hour by Shrewsbury clock.” — William Shakespeare (1564-1616), King Henry IV — Act v, Sc. 4

I’m down, and out of breath, from shouting into the wind, at the mountain… A futile task, at best, I know, but, what else can one do at 5 AM? Mountain moving is my specialty, after all…. The truth of the matter is, after two hours by Shrewsbury clock, I’m tired of shouting at the mountain; it’s hard work, to little effect. I suppose it’s all I can do, and that is why I do it…. It’s cheaper, and, in the long run, less troublesome to my spirit and karma, than going out, buying a gun, and making a list of targets…. Less chance of getting shot back at, too…

There comes a time, however, when even I must admit to the futility of this particular task, and grow a bit discouraged…. I’m just not the kind of person who can give up completely, though, so, I’ll be back to rant on this subject another time…. “They” are always out there doing something on which I can comment. For the time being, I’ll leave you with this final lament…

“The world has taken on a thickness of vulgarity that raises a spiritual man’s contempt to the violence of a passion.” — Charles Baudelaire

Notes from 2014, almost precisely four months after being written: How is one ALMOST precise? Hmm…. well, that’s for another time…. for now, all I can say is…. I resemble that remark!…..
_____________________________

I find myself at loose ends…. It is now 0524, and I’ve been up, working on this Pearl for about an hour and a half, minus some time to deal with coffee production and consumption anomalies…. and, I’m done. I’ve done a new-style mini-headline-rant, included an archived rant, and found a great poem…. all that, and an intro, too!

But, it’s way too early…. If I stop now, there’s no telling what kind of mischief I can get into before the rest of the world in this longitude awakens…. Hell, it’s still pitch dark outside! Even in my reduced condition, I could go down the block, setting off car alarms, and be back inside in five minutes, none the worse for wear…. Then, everyone else would be up, and I could go back to bed, satisfied I had done my part to get the world started today…..

Instead, I’m going to take a break (necessary at this point…. No worries, I’ll leave the car alarms alone….), then come back and put together an old-school pearl, just to take up some time….. I’ll make it a good one, to soothe the hurt from having extra to read today….. Let’s go see what SB has been hiding from us, okay?….

“Indeed, man wishes to be happy even when he so lives as to make happiness impossible.” — St. Augustine

“I have never been so well pleased, as when I could shift power from my own, on the shoulders of others; nor have I ever been able to conceive how any rational being could propose happiness to himself from the exercise of power over others.” — Thomas Jefferson, letter to Monsieur Destutt de Tracy, January 26, 1811, — reprinted in The Writings of Thomas Jefferson, XIII, — ed. A. E. Bergh (1853)

— ‘Shit Happens’ according to…

Politician:  It’s shit, but it’ll get me elected.
If you elect me, there will never again be shit.
Shit is bad for the economy.

“Mistakes are at the very base of human thought, embedded there, feeding the structure like root nodules. If we were not provided with the knack for being wrong, we could never get anything useful done. We think our way along by choosing between right and wrong alternatives, and the wrong choices have to be made as often as the right ones. We get along in life this way.” — Lewis Thomas, The Medusa and the Snail

“As the caterpillar chooses the fairest leaves to lay her eggs on, so the priest lays his curse on the fairest joys.” — William H. Blake (1757-1827)

“They do not understand how that which differs with itself is in agreement: harmony consists of opposing tension, like that of the lyre and the bow.” — Heraclitus

“Impartiality is a pompous name for indifference, which is an elegant name for ignorance.” — G. K. Chesterton, The Speaker, 12/15/00

Well, once again, SB proves its merits…. I didn’t pay much attention as I gathered up these pearls, but, I think it came out pretty coherent, don’t you?…. Well, I guess it is if you have my own particular strange way of seeing patterns of thought in collected ideation…. or, whatever it is I’m doing when I go Pearling…. For that matter, who the fuck cares? It works for me, so, I just try to enjoy it, and don’t fret about how it works…..because I can’t always explain it, even to my own satisfaction….   🙂
_____________________________

Well…. the Pearls seem to be growing again…. I’ve broken 3000 words several times already this year, and this looks like another one that will go over that count, easily…. Not that I’m counting, or anything…. I just keep track of it as a way of judging how much crap is left in here to get rid of…. The more I can get onto the screen in the morning, the less I have to shovel out during the day, into the BBR, where it can cause real problems, if I’m not careful where I put it…. But, that’s the world’s lookout, not mine…. In the meantime, I think I’m done here, so….. 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

Safely insane amid the noise and tedium…..

Ffolkes,
Unbeknownst to the rest of us, the warranty on this state of reality has expired, and I don’t think there will be any renewal, not for us, and not for the dreams we once held. Sad, but true….. A lesser man might become depressed, or fall into the state of mind where a lack of caring, about anything, becomes attractive, rather than the low-level sense of doom that is the lot of those who have any wit to spare. Instead, I think…. I’ll have a beer…..

Or maybe not…. it’s a bit early for a Budweiser, I suppose. I’m not sure exactly what the above paragraph is all about, other than as a possible lead-in to a rant, and it’s WAY too soon in this process to start that….. I haven’t even had enough coffee to be able to blink without concentrating, and I can’t be trusted to tie my shoes yet, much less start ranting about the environment, or whatever…. Hell, as is obvious, I couldn’t get through an entire paragraph without resorting to silliness….. It may be a gift, in some instances, but, just now, it’s more of a PITA…… If you don’t know that particular acronym, well, that is probably just as well…. If you do, then you’ll get my drift….

As might be apparent by now, I’m a little scattered, a little off, today. In such cases, it’s easy to tell how I’m doing, as this intro becomes rather a battleground for sanity, and gets stranger by the second the longer it goes on, and on, and on, and on…… Now, strange isn’t necessarily a BAD thing, not if it’s adequately appreciated, and taken full advantage of….. It’s when folks try to stop it, or make it normal that it gets all crazy and violent. Some folks never pick up on that, and so spend their entire lives fighting against it, rather than being able to embrace it, and allow it to become an asset, rather than a liability…. It’s easy, fun, and much more comfortable than trying to be a conformist…

Since I don’t wish for that to even have a chance to happen, I might do well to get on with business today, rather than trying to squeeze out every last drop of asininity I can from the beginning of this missive. There’s still a ways to go before I can call it a day, so, I’d best be getting to it….. Shall we Pearl?…..
__________________________________

“Oh my GOD — the SUN just fell into YANKEE STADIUM!!” — Zippy the Pinhead

I’ve just spent more than enough time looking for a pearl, and this is the best I’ve seen….. Pathetic, don’t you think? Although I really like Zippy’s little pronouncement for it’s absolutely brilliant level of strange, it doesn’t help in coming up with something, anything, about which I can write. Having already started late today, and now an hour or more into the process, I am, relatively, no further along than when I began, especially if you don’t count the intro section, which is, if not exactly Pulitzer material, at least has the distinction of a small dollop of humor, bordering on verifiable silliness…..

Well, that last sentence certainly wound its way through the grammatical and punctuation minefield, didn’t it? Any who, I was busy complaining about the lack of material…. I’m so dry, in my own head, I’m actually going to resort to a re-post…. Here is an old, and old-school, Pearl, first published, or sent out via email, while I was still working at NSH, which would make it about six to eight years ago….

At that time, the Pearls were all in the format you see below, and were sent out to about 250 hospital employees each morning via the hospital network….It drove the IT dept. crazy when they’d see the network bandwidth patterns go crazy when I sent it out…. Apparently, the Pearls, enjoyed by so many, were a bit of a load for the network at the time of sending….. Oh well….   Any who, enjoy…..

When Reality becomes moot…

Ffolkes,
Spinning, twisting, caught up in the vortex Reality creates, we look about with trepidation, seeking, seeking, and never finding the path to the future that will ease our way. Entropy makes us weep, with deep regret, the choices we never made, the truths we never spoke, the challenges we didn’t meet. In spite of all this, we go on…with courage and good humor. And why? Because we can…..and must.

Did you ever watch Sesame Street? If so, you may remember a repetitive piece called “One of these things is not like the others.” This morning we bring you another version of that, called “Betty Likes It”. If you don’t get it, don’t worry, it’s just about as obscure as I can be, meant to confuse, as the puzzle is an easy one. Comments or criticisms are welcome, though the latter will most likely be cheerfully ignored. You computer ffolkes should like it…..

RTFM – Read The F#*@^| Manual

I admit it, I tried MS-DOS, but I didn’t inhale.

“If builders built buildings the way programmers wrote programs, then the first woodpecker that came along would destroy civilization.’ — Weinberg’s Second Law

For Dessert? I’ll take a piece of cherry 3.14159!

The definition of a successful life must include a commitment to serving others.

So, which is different? If you can’t tell, well, just look for the one that feels the best when you use it…. y’all take care out there…..

This Pearl was first published circa 2006…..
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Where The Sidewalk Ends

There is a place where the sidewalk ends
and before the street begins,
and there the grass grows soft and white,
and there the sun burns crimson bright,
and there the moon-bird rests from his flight
to cool in the peppermint wind.

Let us leave this place where the smoke blows black
and the dark street winds and bends.
Past the pits where the asphalt flowers grow
we shall walk with a walk that is measured and slow
and watch where the chalk-white arrows go
to the place where the sidewalk ends.

Yes we’ll walk with a walk that is measured and slow,
and we’ll go where the chalk-white arrows go,
for the children, they mark, and the children, they know,
the place where the sidewalk ends.

~~ Shel Silverstein
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Truths would you teach, or save a sinking land?
All fear, none aid you, and few understand.

— Alexander Pope (1688-1744) — Essay on Man, Epistle iv, Line 261

Ah, Pope! I regard Alexander Pope as the premier of all the romantic poets…. Deeply insightful, and ornately beautiful, his verse continually amazes me. This poem, Essay on Man, has more couplets and quatrains of great power in it, all of which make excellent excerpts, than in any other work I have ever seen, bar none, save, perhaps, Ode on a Grecian Urn, by Keats. Line after line of great composition, and insight after insight into the nature of Man, Mssr. Pope created one of Mankind’s most precious treasures in this epic work…..

I identify very closely with this couplet, as it is rather a good description of what goes on here. Even though I continue to rant and rail against the people and institutions, and ideas, that I believe are holding us from becoming all we could be as humans, I am often struck with how little response I get from anyone who doesn’t feel the same way….. which is another way of saying that I believe that, most of the time when I rant, I’m preaching to the choir, in a manner of speaking…. It’s more than just a little bit of a frustration, as I believe what I have to say is important to all of us, to, as Alexander so aptly puts it, to “teach, or save a sinking land.” If people continue to ignore what I’m saying, the consequences to be faced are horrendous, not from me, but from Reality…..

“All fear, none aid you, and few understand.”  This, too, seems to be a completely accurate picture of ECR and the rants that are fostered here. Actually, if the BRC was a little more nervous, and paid a bit more attention to me, I think I wouldn’t be so frustrated, as what I’m saying SHOULD make them nervous, since most of it pulls their covers ruthlessly. At least, I hope it does…..sometimes, I have a hard time with ‘ruthless’…. too much of a softie….. SIGH…. I can’t help it if I don’t enjoy hurting people…..

However, any hurt that I cause the BRC is NOTHING, NOTHING when compared to the pain and misery that will be our lot when the massive stupidity our species has displayed for the past 5000 years finally catches up to us…. Yesterday, I posted a quote from Lazarus Long, from The Notebooks Of, that is germane to this discussion…. It said this:

“Stupidity cannot be cured with money, or through education, or by legislation. Stupidity is not a sin, the victim can’t help being stupid. But stupidity is the only universal capital crime; the sentence is death, there is no appeal, and execution is carried out automatically and without pity.” — Lazarus Long

We are writing our own judgment, with our continued denial of the facts about global warming, and the serious effects of overpopulation and pollution on the ecosystem, and are being quite insistent on making it happen as fast as we can. This leaves us little time at all to save those of us who don’t go along with this stupidity, who would sooner survive into the next millennium, rather than die, to the last man, in this one.

I only wish that more people would start to throw off the state of mind that leads to denial, and start kicking some 1% ass, as the issues around all of this aren’t the major problem for us. The main problem is the assholes who are in charge of the world, who don’t have a clue as to just how stupid they are being, and are driving us, blindly, down the road to extinction…. Their intransigence in denying all of the evidence that is there is, in my mind, about as deliberately stupid as one can be, and it’s just a damn shame that, because they are stupid, I have to live with the consequences…. or, more accurately, die from them….

Ah well, c’est la vie! Writing my rants, and shouting the message from the vantage of this blog, are about all I can do…. As I’ve said before, all you can do, is all you can do…..

“Imagine the Creator as a low comedian, and at once the world becomes explicable.” — H. L. Mencken (1880-1956)
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I’ll take it…. and there is nothing about “settling” in that decision. It isn’t bad, considering the struggle I went through to write it…. It’s tough to come up with around 2000 words a day, and make it all fresh and excellent…. Not that I’m complaining; I’m the one who decided on this format…. It’s all good, or,  as John Lennon’s mom used to say, it’s nothing to get hung about…. Not sure what she meant by that…..   🙂   Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..


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

gigoid

dozer3

Bubba won’t know, he’s a Rotary….

Ffolkes,
Struggling for emotional control isn’t a new experience, not for those of us who deal with the joys of PTSD. There are times when it is impossible, and tears begin to flow at the drop of an emotion, strong or not. On those occasions, I may as well just go back to bed, because getting anything constructive done will be more effort than its worth. Other times, it’s better, to the extent that it takes more emotional impetus to break my control; those days I spend staying very busy, so that those strong emotions remain below the surface of my attention, thus allowing me a degree of control over any outbreaks of angst and salty water leakage on my face…..

So, it doesn’t surprise me, particularly, to find myself in that latter state this morning, as I spent much of the day there yesterday, and it seemed to work okay…. I got through the day without any major mishaps; no casualties, or injuries requiring stitches, and, thankfully, no major breakdowns in public. THOSE are a pain in my old butt when they happen, as I’ve always considered myself to be a person who is able to present a calm, equable demeanor to the world, and it’s humiliating to find myself on the sidewalk, waiting for a signal to change, with tears pouring down my face, while I fight back sobs….

That image doesn’t exactly fit in with my own, or, rather, with the one I would hope to present to the world at large. Unfortunately, it does fit in with my state of mind when some kind of emotional storm is produced by some stressful news, or a stressful experience of any kind, and it’s something I need to either cure, or learn to cope with, as it isn’t going to go away on its own. How I will do that remains, at least at this point, a mystery to me…. which doesn’t bode well for the immediate future….. Stop right there…..

Okay, I caught myself, so that’s good…. I was about to fall into a mind trap of my own making, one I’ve encountered previously….. I was allowing my depressive feelings to color my judgment, and using that coloration to fuel the depression itself. If I continue in that vein, I would soon be blubbering, and lost in sadness and angst for the rest of the day, so I’m glad I realized what I was doing….. I do have a tendency to let myself indulge in such maudlin depression sometimes, and fall into the trap of not seeing how I’m keeping myself there…. It takes a while sometimes for me to catch up to myself, and dig my way out, so I’m glad I realized where I was headed, and took that hard turnaround in the last paragraph…..

Okay, so here’s where we ended up….. it’s all crap, but it’s five plus paragraphs of fair prose, if somewhat querulous in subject matter, and presentation, so I’m going to let the intro fly the way it is…. We’ll go on from here, to the daily dive, into the incredibly vast ocean of human thought, and see if I can’t find something a bit less peevish, and a bit more erudite about which to write…. as our old friend and incurable optimist, John Carter, said, on the occasion of his first trip to Mars….. “While I live, there is hope!”…. Shall we Pearl?…..
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“I know not with what weapons World War III will be fought, but World War IV will be fought with sticks and stones.” — Albert Einstein (1879-1955)

Albert, though absolutely correct in his assessment of the danger of atomic war, was somewhat premature in this prediction of the form our doom will take. He, himself, were he alive today, would probably agree that we now face a much graver, if no less permanently fatal, danger, one with even more grave consequences for humanity than an atomic holocaust. There is a possibility, slim though it may be, that we could survive an atomic war, though civilization would be in greatly reduced circumstances. The danger we now face is worse, in that it allows no possibility whatsoever that we will survive it at all….. None….

I’m referring, of course, to the effects of global warming, and the continuing assault on the environment made inevitable by human greed and avarice, and to humanity’s massive denial of the facts that are being shoved in our faces. This denial is so strongly entrenched that it prevents most people from even looking at the evidence that is available, because, mostly, they don’t WANT to see it. It makes them afraid to even think about the subject, so they refuse to do so, in spite of the fact that doing so will eventually cause their demise, as well as that of everyone, and everything, they hold dear….

I spend a lot of time, and words, on trying to convince people that this issue is not one that is going to go away, and will not be solved by ignoring, or by denying, its presence. I try to always point out that none of my predictions are confined to this blog, that there is ample scientific evidence, freely available, online, or in libraries, and news reports, that shows very clearly just how little time we have left to stop our depredations on the environment, and that demonstrates quite plainly how critical it is to find some way to correct the damage we’ve done. Otherwise, there is absolutely no doubt at all that we, as a species, will join the ranks of the Dodo, and the T-Rex, and all the other promising life forms that once existed on Earth, that are now extinct.

If you have, or know of, any evidence to the contrary, I hope you will be kind enough to show me where I can look at it; I would be thrilled to find some hopeful data on the subject. However, I’m fairly confident no one will take me up on that, because, to my extensive knowledge, there is no such evidence, so it would be hard to produce out of thin air…. which is what we all will be breathing in the relatively near future….

Normally, at this point, I’d go into my usual rant about the responsible parties in this mess, to wit: the Beloved Ruling Class, otherwise known as the 1%,  or the Corporate Masters and their Pious Lackeys, the Priestly Hierarchies and Political Hacks…. They hide behind their private estate, or bureaucratic, or sacred, reinforced concrete walls, and watch, as the rest of us labor on their behalf, as the atmosphere continues to become overloaded with millions of tons of particulate matter every second, and the oceans are filled up with toxic unnatural substances that cannot be destroyed, or eaten, or otherwise used to enhance life. Our planet is being turned into a refuse dump, and we are about to lose our jobs as subsidized scavengers…..

Today, however, I’m reserving my anger for the Universe at large, for its cruel, dispassionate treatment of me and my family, so I don’t want to take the time for my usual indictment of those assholes…. Besides, there’s always tomorrow, right? I can say that now, and maybe for a time, but, I won’t be able to always say it…. We have been served our final notice of eviction ffolkes, and, any folks listening in…. The landlord, a lady by the name of Gaia, is tired of our constant degradation of the property, and wishes us to vacate, so they can repaint, and put down new carpets…..

“You know,” he added very gravely, “it’s one of the most serious things that can possibly happen to one in a battle — to get one’s head cut off.”  — Lewis Carroll, “Through the Looking-Glass”
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Random Visions/Coloring Between the Lines of Grief

Everywhere is dark, and shining,
with points in dissonant pain.
Sharp, senses dull past divining,
tears burn, a torrential rain.

Escape! Flee within to cower,
find an unconscious cave.
Call on Morpheus’ power
deny reality’s beckoning wave.

Light breaks, drawing the inner eye,
leading to the slippery slope.
Risk is critical, we may only sigh,
yet welcome, for bringing hope.

Sanity seems far out of reach
Insanity’s a stronger friend.
Decisions made will merely teach
our way toward Death to wend.

Lost, while still on familiar ground,
the future yet undesigned.
Making way on paths unfound,
to Now, as yet undefined.

~~ gigoid
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“Know that which pervades the entire body is indestructible. No one is able to destroy the imperishable soul.” — Bhagavad Gita (c. B.C. 400)

I first read the Bhagavad Gita when I was about 17, and, along with the Tao Teh Ching, it has had a profound effect on my life, and the attitudes I bring to living it. The above verses are what led me to my belief in the mind’s immortality, as a form of energy like any other in this Universe, thus, subject to the Law of Conservation of Energy. This has served to remove the fear from Death for me, as I am now able to view it as a mere change of form, to one whose characteristics I do not know, or remember, from previous changes. (How would you know you were alive, unless you had once been dead?) Once fear is removed, Death becomes just another part of living, and is welcome as such, for the inherent beauty it possesses as the complement to Life…..

“All anger arises out of obstructed desire.” — Bhagavad Gita

This is the second verse from the book that I found to be extremely valuable in learning to live with dignity, with honor, and without fear. This statement, by its very nature, implies that our anger is under our control, placing it into our bag of assets to be used when needed, rather than in our bag of liabilities, or, emotions that keep us from reaching our potential as humans, like fear, anger, greed, etc….. Fear can be seen as the desire to be safe from harm, obstructed, and thus comes under the aegis of our emotions that can be changed, by merely changing our desire…. By learning to deal with fear, anger becomes our ally, rather than our enemy…..

In turn, these two principles, when used conjointly, give us the emotional freedom to make clear decisions about reality’s demands and issues, without our emotional responses coloring the decisions with their negative outlook, and tendency toward denial and obstruction. We become immune, or at least, indifferent, to the emotional storms that plague most people’s minds and hearts, for we know how to adjust our attitudes to suit the conditions under which we find ourselves, instead of falling prey to letting the circumstances dictate our response. True freedom, indeed…

Today, when I found this, I was immediately reminded of all of these ideas; concepts I had lost track of in the distractions of living. As I remembered, the pain and anger I’ve been feeling since hearing the news of my brother’s illness fell away, no longer able to sustain their hold over my emotions. I am once more able to see how this is not an issue to be angry about, but rather one to use as an opportunity to grow, and to perhaps be able to give my brother the love and support he needs, despite what he may want, in his own grief…. He is afraid, and trying to keep from either showing, or sharing that fear with his family, and I won’t allow him to die that way, or to be without his family, when it is so unnecessary…..

So, I am feeling better in that respect, and though I am still filled with sadness, I know now that is just my own self-pity, feeling sorry for myself for having to face HIS death, which reminds me of my own…. Grief is, in truth, misplaced in looking at death, and in reality is more of a solace for the living, than it is a tribute to the dead; our grief is more a feeling of loss in ourselves than it is sorrow for their passing. But, it is not a time for sadness, ultimately, but rather a chance to acknowledge the beauty of a Universe that gives us this opportunity to experience the change in our consciousness….

I’m betting that when we change over, we are in a place where our minds are much more in tune with the very base of reality, and able to direct the formation of the next form it takes…. Hey, that makes as much sense as any of the other suggestions of what happens that I’ve heard, and has the advantage of fitting the facts of observable, recordable reality, pretty precisely….. and if I’m wrong, well, I’ll deal with that when I get there….  🙂

I’ll tell you this quite frankly…. if the Christians are right, or the Muslims, or any of the other organized institutional churches, then I will definitely have a few words for whatever is passing itself off as God, to answer for the actions of His/Her/Its followers…. and I won’t be taking any BS for a response….

“And now there is merely silence, silence, silence, saying all we did not know.” — William Rose Benet
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Well, I don’t know about y’all, but I feel MUCH better…. Proof positive, better out than in…. Ffolkes, what we have here is a Pearl of Virtual Wisdom, of the finest grade, shiny and new, and all original, outside the few short quotes…. Get it while it’s still steaming! Me, I’m gonna go enjoy the sunshine, while I can….  Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..


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

gigoid

dozer3

Near the end of the Plasticene Era….

Ffolkes,
Look! Up in the sky! It’s a word! It’s a train of thought! It’s…… Bloggerman!  Faster than a speeding thought, able to leap tall metaphors in a single bound, this mild mannered writer for a large internet blogging community, risks humiliation and embarrassment on a daily basis, bringing to the reading public the views and opinions they won’t see on TV…. Join us today, as he once more joins battle with the forces of evil, cleverly disguised as normal priests and politicians, whose wicked agenda makes them seek to harden your water, frighten the baby, poison your cat, and make your whites dingy….. Now, that’s evil….

Obviously, it’s time for coffee…. I’ll be back…. The above paragraph sort of wrote itself, as I sat waiting for the coffee to finish, so I let it have its way, and since it came out in an acceptable form, we’ll let it stay…. It’s probably too late to start over, and it might stimulate a chuckle or two, so, what the hell…. It can’t be any less appropriate than the intro sections from the last few days, which have been rather painful to create, with all sorts of contortions and hoops to jump through, a process this old body/mind conglomerate just doesn’t tolerate so well any more…. And what you are hearing now is the LAST complaint for today falling from my mouth, or out of my head, or onto the screen, choose your own metaphor…..

Nobody likes to listen to complaints, unless they are funnier than whatever else is going on, and that isn’t the case here, is it? I may not be the world’s greatest writer, yet…., but I know funny, and so far, this isn’t it….. Unless, of course, the chaotic ramblings and silliness that seems to characterize this intro section appeals to your funny bones, in which case, welcome…. Can I get you something to drink?…. Some hors d’oeuvre? A plastic bunny? Some Milk Duds?….  We like to pamper our fans here at ECR….

See, that’s what I mean about these intros…. I’ll be going along fine, and my head will take a 112 degree hard turn to the right, or left, and leave me wondering what the hell to write next…. such as in the last paragraph…. Sheesh! As if I can afford snacks!…. I know, I know, they meant well, (whoever ‘they’ were….), but it doesn’t alter the fact that they’re promising stuff I can’t deliver…. which will tend to piss people off, and they’ll never come back…. Ah well, the entire process of creating intros seems to have become somewhat degraded, or at least become rather unwieldy, and probably is in need of some time in the shop for repairs…..

Since stuff of that nature is far outside the parameters of my current budget, I guess I’ll have to keep on keeping on, as they say, and try to make this work for a while longer….. I need new shoes, and socks, and a bunch of other stuff that will have to take priority over even a simple lube job on an intro section…. That is all if and when my SS money ever comes through….. Until then, these introductions, such as they are, will have to do…. In today’s case, it is definitely a matter of “making do”, or maybe I meant, “making do do…..” Shall we Pearl?…..
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PRESIDENCY, n.  The greased pig in the field game of American politics. — Ambrose Bierce, “The Devil’s Dictionary”

You can’t see me, but I have this big smile on my face…. It has been there since I first read this, this morning, and has flashed on each time I see it…. I had forgotten just how funny, and how eerily accurate, as well as wonderfully sarcastic, the Devil’s Dictionary could be….. In any case, this is some funny stuff, and a perfect example of how the Dictionary’s author somehow obtained a direct line to the future of this country, in order to be able to so exactly describe how our modern system has evolved, and demonstrate how it has become, rather than high comedy, an example of low farce….

Of late, you’ve seen me put out a lot of words on the Beloved Ruling Class (BRC), and the priestly hierarchies, those two entities I hold responsible for the miserable conditions that most of our society is forced to endure, and whom I also hold responsible for the danger of species extinction that we face… It is their narcissistic insistence on having it all for themselves that has put our entire species at risk, along with a large number of other species, who will also be affected by the mess we’ve created in the environment.

I keep on shouting, even though it mostly feels as if I’m shouting into the wind, because, in all honesty, I don’t want to die, and I’d like my kids to have a chance to live their entire lives, too, and perhaps even have some hope of a future for their own children…. Currently, there isn’t much hope of that…..

Yes, ffolkes, there isn’t much time left to get this done…. Every second, more and more tons of particulate matter are being poured into the air, and the cumulative effects have actually, finally, reached the critical flash point that ecologists have predicted for years…. Soon, plants that provide oxygen to the air will begin to die, (actually, they are dying as I write this…. as I said, it is late in the game….) and the balance of oxygen and carbon monoxide in the air will start to rapidly change, at a geometrically parabolic rate, (to wit: faster and faster the longer it goes on….) until it is unbreathable for us, and for all the other mammals, sea creatures, and plant life-forms that are dependent on the levels of those substances as they are now…. This process isn’t unknown….. we have been warned about it, now, for going on 50 years, or more, since the effects were first noted….

But, nobody who cared to do anything about it was listening, and still today, there aren’t anywhere near enough of our BRC who are convinced of the risk, so virtually NOTHING has, or is being done, to resolve the issue…. Instead, it is subjected to massive denial on the part of almost every government in the world. They, and most people, have no idea that the bill for our idiocy is about to be presented, and we left our wallet in our other pants….. I think it’s obvious the Universe doesn’t take checks, or give credit…..

I wish I knew the proper sequence of words to use, the words that would inflame the masses, that would inspire the world to rise up, and throw off the yoke of oppression that the 1% has fitted us with, to finally give them their just desserts, and save our own asses in the process…. Alas, I don’t seem to have them in me…. not yet, anyway…. There are probably a few ffolkes out there who agree with me, and would help, if they also knew what to do, or say, to get things started…. But, mostly, I think I’m either shouting into the wind, or preaching to the choir….

In either case, it doesn’t seem to be helping much, other than keeping me from losing my sense of perspective, and actively going out hunting, to try to at least thin the ranks of the ones who are causing the problems…. That would make me feel better, for sure, but, I’m not ready to live the rest of my life on the run, so, I’ll save that option for when things are even worse than they are now….

I’ll also keep shouting, even if it’s into the wind, because I’m also not ready to give in to despair, and loss of hope. Call me stubborn, call me irresponsible (you’d be wrong in that, but, hey, it’s a free country…. mostly….), but don’t call me late for dinner. Also, don’t call me to help you further any of the agenda items that I see on the part of those in power, because I can guarantee that would put me over the edge, and you would be right there, in the explosive field of destruction when I went off…. If you want help to work against anything they’ve started, I’m there….  In the meantime, keep your powder dry, and your field of fire clear…. This final pearl explains why….

“If we don’t survive, we don’t do anything else.” — John Sinclair

And one more, just because there must always be hope, or life isn’t worth living…

“In a just cause the weak o’ercome the strong.” — Sophocles (496-406 BC) — Oedipus Coloneus, 880
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A couple of months ago, the urge to write poems became too strong, and a bunch of them forced their way out of my head, up into the light of day…. Thirty-nine of them, to be precise…. In the intervening time since the last one leaked out, the urge has been quiet, making me afraid that I’ve lost my muse in that arena….. That is almost as frightening as having it take hold, to push me through the terrifying process of creating a poem, and letting it go public…. However, there are indications that there are some more verses percolating down there in my subconscious, so I’m trying to be patient, and wait for whatever it is to surface….

Which is why y’all have lately been treated to some of the best poetry I can find out there on the Net, among the clouds of information so bravely presented…. Here, then, is another classic, from one of my favorite poets, and yours (well, except for Shawna…. To each their own….  🙂   )…. I’ve used this before, as it is a subject on which I am expert, and speaks to me quite plainly…..

Pain has an element of blank;
It cannot recollect
When it began, or if there were
A day when it was not.

It has no future but itself,
Its infinite realms contain
Its past, enlightened to perceive
New periods of pain.

~~ Emily Dickinson
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“You, who claim that you long to rise above the crude concerns of the body, above the drudgery of serving mere physical needs — who is enslaved by physical needs:  the Hindu who labors from sunrise to sunset at the shafts of a handplow for a bowl of rice, or the American who is driving a tractor?  Who is the conqueror of physical reality: the man who sleeps on a bed of nails or the man who sleeps on an inner-spring mattress?Which is the monument to the triumph of the human spirit over matter:  the germ-eaten hovels on the shorelines of the Ganges or the Atlantic skyline of New York?” — John Galt

As far as I know, John Galt is a fictional character, who is often used to illustrate some obscure point of justification for the attitudes of the elite, the 1%. This statement seems to be a pretty good example of that, though it is a bit unclear, but, that, I believe, is a deliberate device on the author’s part to make the reader think the speaker is more mindful than he appears….

Anais Nin, the author of the book, or books, I’m not sure which, with Galt as the protagonist, is also often held up as the apologist extraordinaire for the moneyed classes, for her unapologetic defense of the lack of compassion, and rejection of human equality, that so characterizes the BRC, and the 1% of humanity that controls 99% of the physical and financial resources…

Yes, them again… Sorry, but, their influence over our lives is ubiquitous, touching on every aspect of what we do, and what we don’t do; as a result, their name tends to show up in a great many places where I’m trying to throw some light on certain examples of their activities, which they would just as soon stayed in the dark….. 

So, anyway, where was I? Oh, yeah, Galt and Nin, poster children for the hidden masters of society….. I began with the phrase, “As far as I know”…. That was deliberately vague, but accurate, in that I’ve never been able to read one of Nin’s books all the way through….

Oh, I’ve tried, and have read enough to get a pretty good idea of how the rest of it would go…. I’ve started “Atlas Shrugged” any number of times, with identical results each time, no matter how sternly I spoke with my inner judge to keep quiet until I was done…. It wasn’t the heavy, pretentious, wordy style of writing that made it so hard to finish, or even the presumption of validity, or the transparent misuse of logic, that made me give up on finishing the book(s) of hers I opened……. It was the nausea that built up over the course of the book’s events, directly related to the demonstration of the lack of human compassion, and narcissism, that infuses the main character’s behavior, and that of many of the books’ characters, which is so transparently a part of the author’s own beliefs.

In short, it literally made me sick to read this woman’s thoughts about how reality should be considered, according to her absolutely self-centered philosophy…. It is very nearly a clinical description of sociopathy, with its complete insistence on the validity, and priority, of one’s own rules of behavior over society’s standards…. If the character of John Galt ever came to life, and manifested in my vicinity, I might just give myself a day off from my vow to never kill anyone without first trying to at least talk them out of their asininity…. which is to say, the very idea of meeting someone like him(her) makes my blood boil….

Ah, me…. It can’t be good for my blood pressure to pump itself up so early in the day, so I’ll leave this little diatribe where it is…. I think by now, I’ve made it pretty clear how I feel about the 1%, whom I choose to call the BRC and the priestly hierarchies…. Besides, much more of this, and I take the risk of losing ffolkes out of repetitive boredom…. not a good recommendation for a writer, and certainly not something of which I wish to ever be accused.

Go ahead and read Anais Nin’s books…. If nothing else, they’ll give you a good idea of how the 1% tries, nay, succeeds, in combining the use of logic and lies to keep the public in a state of fear and confusion as to what is real; reading at least some of it will keep you abreast of what they believe, or claim to believe…. A sociopath chooses their beliefs like a shirt, and can change them just as easily, and as swiftly, in order to meet their own needs, and fulfill their own agenda, which has nothing to do with doing anything for you that would be helpful…. It’s all about them, and what they consider “rational”, or “practical”…..

“There is no conflict of interests among men, neither in business nor in trade nor in their most personal desires — if they omit the irrational from their view of the possible and destruction from their view of the practical …  A wish for the irrational is not to be achieved, whether the sacrificial victims are willing or not.  But men will not cease to desire the impossible and will not lose their longing to destroy — so long as self-destruction and self-sacrifice are preached to them as the practical means of achieving the happiness of the recipients.” — John Galt

See? I rest my case…..

“Concentrate on th’cute, li’l CARTOON GUYS! Remember the SERIAL NUMBERS!! Follow the WHIPPLE AVE EXIT!! Have a FREE PEPSI!!  Turn LEFT at th’HOLIDAY INN!!  JOIN the CREDIT WORLD!!  MAKE me an OFFER!!!” — Zippy the Pinhead
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Well, that was certainly an outpouring, wasn’t it? Of what, precisely, there appears to be some confusion, which means my work here is done….. And with some style, too!…. In fact, I’m going to go out on a limb here, and say… Mikey likes it. Or, he will, when he sees it…. Now that I’ve convinced even the most stubborn among y’all of my dedication to sheer insanity, I will leave you be….

If you are having some second thoughts, or even first ones, about the time you spend here, immersed in my particular brand of consensual reality, look at it this way…. You COULD have to live INSIDE my head, instead of just peeking in through these windows…. Be brave, I’ll be back, tomorrow, given a choice….  Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..


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

gigoid

dozer3

Moments of regrettable histrionics…..

Ffolkes,
Morning again brings itself to the forefront of consciousness, as it tends to do about this time every day. Not that I have a problem with that, but I wasn’t quite done sawing logs when the phone rang, and reality came rushing back in…. Hence, I am now up, staring once again at the keyboard, with an empty head…. I should most likely sit and let the coffee work its magic for a bit……

“A beginning is the time for taking the most delicate care that balances are correct.” — from “Manual of Maud’Dib” by the Princess Irulan

I can testify that delicacy is hard when one’s blood sugar is out of balance; my own reaction to being bothered before having consumed sufficient quantities of caffeine and sugar is to bite, or at least bark loudly, at whomever has the audacity to approach before I’m fully charged. Even though I know it isn’t their fault, they pay the price, if only to allow them to learn the correct lesson. Survival of the fittest, right? Right…..

“I don’t think you’re ready for what I think.” — Fox Mulder

Maybe that’s why I live alone now…. though I try to make an effort to accommodate anyone I live with to a degree, it probably gets old after a while; I know I certainly did. Get old, that is…. I can feel it now, as I sit here, struggling to remain fairly straight upright, as typing is tough when one has to lean on one elbow. Someday, I’d really like to speak to the person responsible for printing and distributing the manual we are issued at birth. You know, our Life Manual, that tells us how to do stuff with our bodies, and gives maintenance directions for upkeep. Most folks lose theirs, before they ever get to an age where they would pay attention, but I can say for sure that there isn’t a word in it that gives any warning about how to deal with the aging process, and all of the challenges that getting old provides…. if it did, folks might even keep track of it better….

“Age does not make us childish, as some say; it finds us true children.” — Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Ah well, pain is life, for some of us, and our days are measured by how much we can keep it from getting to the point of needing to whine about it. Suffering is supposed to teach character, and strength in the face of adversity; somehow, one who suffers is supposed to be noble…. but, I say, piss on it, I’m in pain, so stand back, while I try to drug myself insensible…. I take enough medication to knock most folks right out, and still manage to keep my head in the game, so, I figure I’m doing okay…. If nothing else, it keeps me off the streets….  after a fashion…..

Ah, the hell with it…. let’s go dive in and look around a while, eh? Shall we Pearl?…..
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It is popularly supposed that between those who use the word “God” and those who do not there is some great gulf.  But the gulf lies elsewhere.  It lies between those who dogmatize, either positively or negatively, and those who recognize in great humility that something within them bears witness to realities which may be momentous in our lives, but which lie beyond the grasping net of our categories of thought. — Smart Bee

Yet more proof of Murphy’s presence in Life…. or, in my life, anyway….. Yesterday I wrote about this subject, expounding as I am wont to do, with no little enthusiasm, trying to bring some clarity to a naturally murky subject (it’s hard to pin down anything solidly when the subject under discussion is a matter of conjecture, not physically present to be examined….). Then, later in the day, I come across this one short paragraph, that summarizes my 3-400 words succinctly in three lines, and very clearly, for all its brevity. SIGH….. So much for originality, eh? Though I don’t know who said it, I salute them….

“In answer to the question of why it happened, I offer the modest proposal that our Universe is simply one of those things which happen from time to time.” — Edward P. Tryon

Once more, I have to agree with the author, especially as it gives a sort of pat on the shoulder to the paragraph above, as if sharing an obvious point. Serendipity, I say, and well met….

“When they discover the center of the universe, a lot of people will be disappointed to discover they are not it.” — Bernard Bailey

This one, when viewed in light of the previous two quotes, made me smile, big….. now, why is that? Because when he says a lot, he means, A LOT OF PEOPLE!…..

“And don’t tell me God works in mysterious ways, Yossarian continued There’s nothing mysterious about it, He’s not working at all. He’s playing. Or else He’s forgotten all about us. That’s the kind of God you people talk about, a country bumpkin, a clumsy, bungling, brainless, conceited, uncouth hayseed. Good God, how much reverence can you have for a Supreme Being who finds it necessary to include such phenomena as phlegm and tooth decay in His divine system of Creation? What in the world was running through that warped, evil, scatological mind of His when He robbed old people of the power to control their bowel movements? Why in the world did He ever create pain?” — Joseph Heller, Catch 22

Funny how people under stress always get so close to the truth; it makes the one who hears it more nervous and upset than he who said it…. or it that just me? Of course it is…. Why shouldn’t it be me? What’s the matter with me? Don’t you like me?….. Sorry…. any who, let’s see what else the magic can find….

“Every sensible man, every honest man, must hold the Christian sect in horror. But what shall we substitute in its place? you say. What? A ferocious animal has sucked the blood of my relatives. I tell you to rid yourselves of this beast and you ask me what you shall put in its place?” — Voltaire

Shall I say, I have gone at dusk through narrow streets
And watched the smoke that rises from the pipes
Of lonely men in shirt-sleeves, leaning out of windows?…

I should have been a pair of ragged claws
Scuttling across the floors of silent seas.

— T. S. Eliot, “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock”

I’m not sure why, but this excerpt from T.S. Eliot seems to be the perfect finishing line for the above meandering treatise…. and it is as close to a verifiable point as we’re going to get today, I can tell…. so, best leave it be for now, and go on to something else…. Or, in this case, to something the same….
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Portrait of a Lady

Among the smoke and fog of a December afternoon
You have the scene arrange itself–as it will seem to do–
With “I have saved this afternoon for you”;
And four wax candles in the darkened room,
Four rings of light upon the ceiling overhead,
An atmosphere of Juliet’s tomb
Prepared for all the things to be said, or left unsaid.
We have been, let us say, to hear the latest Pole
Transmit the Preludes, though his hair and fingertips.
“So intimate, this Chopin, that I think his soul
Should be resurrected only among friends
Some two or three, who will not touch the bloom
That is rubbed and questioned in the concert room.”
–And so the conversation slips
Among velleities and carefully caught regrets
Through attenuated tones of violins
Mingled with remote cornets
And begins.
“You do not know how much they mean to me, my friends,
And how, how rare and strange it is, to find
In a life composed so much, so much of odds and ends,
[For indeed I do not love it . . . you knew? you are not blind!
How keen you are!]
To find a friend who has these qualities,
Who has, and gives
Those qualities upon which friendship lives.
How much it means that I say this to you–
Without these friendships–life, what cauchemar!”

Among the windings of the violins
And the ariettes
Of cracked cornets
Inside my brain a dull tom-tom begins
Absurdly hammering a prelude of its own,
Capricious monotone
That is at least one definite “false note.”
–Let us take the air, in a tobacco trance,
Admire the monuments,
Discuss the late events,
Correct our watches by the public clocks.
Then sit for half and hour and drink our bocks.

T. S. Eliot

I don’t care what anyone says…. this is some good stuff….. a worthy goal to shoot for, wouldn’t you agree?…… Not in hope of exceeding, but merely to equal the power of this man’s work is worthy of any effort…..
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A candidate is a person who gets money from the rich and votes from the poor to protect them from each other. — Smart Bee

I guess the political scene is taking a short break, gathering its momentum for the big two-month push to the election… Both parties have officially branded their candidates, and the Party Platforms have been printed up and sent out…. It is significant to me that, of the two major parties, one’s platform talks of reform, and rebuilding, and celebrating diversity, whereas the other talks about defensiveness, and divisiveness, about negatives, and the return to old values that have already proven themselves as destructive. I don’t even have to say which is which, and you will know; that is how clearly divided the two are this time….

I don’t fully trust any of them, but at least the Dems are trying to help out the little man, rather than aggrandizing the rich. Every Republican platform plank serves to secure the strangle-hold the rich have over the poor; it amazes me how many poor folks are following him, just because he promises to bring Whiteness back to government, even though it means stepping all over the weak and vulnerable. As long as the scary Black man isn’t elected, they think they’ll be happy, not realizing that the scary Black man has already improved their lot, and will make it even better if allowed to actually pass some legislation designed to aid the middle class instead of the 1%.

These closet racists are so incensed that they have to listen to, and even admire, a black family in the Presidency, they are willing to cut off their own noses to get a white man back in the White House. They grab onto the most egregious lies, and repeat them endlessly, as if the repetition will make it true. When they are corrected, with irrefutable proof of the lies, they switch to attack mode, and call the fact-checkers communists, or socialists, or bring up the tired old “birther” conspiracy. One Republican actually said, after being corrected about a lie told during the Republican convention, “We aren’t going to let ‘fact checkers’ dictate our candidacy!” Honest, it’s on video….

“The fantasy which serves as a support for the figure of the Stalinist Communist (sub: Republican Party Platform for 2012….) is therefore exactly the same as the fantasy which is at work in the Tom and Jerry cartoons.” — Slavoj Zizek

At this point, I actually am feeling somewhat lucky not to have a TV, since that will prevent me from having to watch all the loaded political ads, from both sides of the election process. I won’t have to experience the repeated disgust at the nasty, underhanded tactics being used by the conservatives, or worry about over-dosing on sugar from the ads from the Dems. I still get to see the public’s reaction to the ads, by reading about them online; if I really WANT to see one (for some unknown, and unfathomable reason….) I can check it out on You Tube, where everything ends up anyway…. it’s the best way I’ve found yet to get through an election without all the emotional drama that plays out over the mainstream TV airways….

The internet is also playing a new part in this election, one that has so far been under-reported, or just ignored… The stories one reads on the Net are a good way to measure the reaction of the public to the various claims by both sides of the contest; in addition, it serves as a dispassionate fact-checking service, as many, many sites now publish the truth or lies that each side is stating, usually within minutes of the first report. This has turned out to be a thorn in the side of the Republicans, as they are relying almost totally on lies and made up statements for their rhetoric. They don’t really have anything they can show as being an improvement in the way things are going; only their wild claims of, ‘feed the rich’ and wait for the money and jobs to trickle down from heaven, like manna….

Very few folks are buying that, as the economic policies they espouse have been refuted repeatedly by independent researchers and experts, and the results of eight years of that sort of policy are painfully obvious. I imagine that by the time the election actually takes place, there will be very few actual voters left who haven’t been driven away by one of their lies and/or fables….. and a landslide election will be the result…. I certainly hope so, as then maybe we can actually make some headway at dealing with the issues that are important to people, instead of focusing on the conservative right’s need to soothe their racism…. instead of having to deal with their unfounded, and cowardly, fears…..

The sage manages affairs without action
And spreads doctrines without words.
All things arise, and he does not turn away from them.
He produces them, but does not take possession of them.
He acts, but does not rely on his own ability.
He accomplishes his task, but does not claim credit for it.
It is precisely because he does not claim credit, that his accomplishment remains with him.
— Lao-Tzu
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All things considered, this hasn’t gone too badly…. a bit of old/new school meandering, some mild ranting, and a good poem. What better way to start one’s day? I’ll take it…. please wrap it to go, and I’ll be on my way….. Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..


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

gigoid

Dozer

Kowabunga!

Zipping in fields of pizazz….

Ffolkes,
Odd dreams, indeed, that persist into the day. Odder still when they ask for coffee. But there he was, a huge, red-skinned demon, complete with horns and a tail, big as life and twice as ugly, sitting in my only chair, and demanding coffee. I’m pretty sure, even without checking, that I’ve never had one of the nasty creatures that inhabit some of my less cheerful dreams sit in my living room, and the new experience wasn’t bringing me the thrill of discovery and wonder that one might expect. In fact, it was just pissing me off….

“What the hell makes you think I’m giving you coffee!” I said, calmly…. well, it would have been calmly, but for the volume set at “scream”…. My visitor merely smiled, looking at me as if I were a tardy student, and shook his head. “Because I asked for it?” he rumbled out of his over-sized mouth. “You’ve never been one to deny basic hospitality.” “I’m making an exception in your case, ” I snapped back, “since you seem to have invited yourself to this party.” “True, true,” he smiled, “but, you’ll feel better with some of it inside you, and we’ll have a better chat.” Fuming, but resigned because he was right, I moved into the small kitchen to pour a couple of cups.

There… that’s out. Better out than in, I always say…. I am starting today’s dive for pearls very late, as my body refused to get up at my usual time. I find myself here at my computer with three and a half extra hours of sleep, which I apparently needed badly.  It’s not really hard to understand why. I just don’t like to admit that it is so exhausting to sit around and fight against pain, but there seems to be little I can do to deny it, as that is all I do, mostly…. Let me tell you, this getting old sucks, big time….

Not only does it suck, but it makes me whine, which I hate in myself. It’s bad enough to have the pain, which no one can see, but to complain about it lacks dignity, and I can use all of that I can muster. So, if y’all don’t mind, I think I’ll just drag this cloak of dignity I found laying here around my shoulders, take a deep breath, and dive into the pool on a search for pearls…. take a breath now, if you’re going with me…One…two… three…. dive!……
___________________________________

Here is a reverse pearl…. instead of a quote, or two, and my discussion of the subject, here are four excellent pearls, all of which I have previously discussed; there is really no need to write more about them, as my opinion is well-documented…. Instead, just read them all, in the order presented, and note how accurate a picture it paints of the current political scene in this country…. they clearly demonstrate, or at least highlight, how our own failure as citizens of a democracy has contributed to the position in which we now find ourselves….

“There is no such thing as security. There never has been.” — Germaine Greer

“Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It may be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated, but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end, for they do so with the approval of their own conscience.”
— C. S. Lewis

“It is not the fact of liberty but the way in which liberty is exercised that ultimately determines whether liberty itself survives…  When liberty is taken away by force it can be restored by force.  When it is relinquished voluntarily by default it can never be recovered.” — Dorothy Thompson, American journalist, author (1894-1961)

“The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary.” — H. L. Mencken

I was watching one of my favorite movies last night, “The American President” and one of the lines reminded me of just how far we have come from the dream our founding fathers had for us…. from the speech at the end of the movie, the President says, “I assure you, Bob Rumson (read: Mitt Romney) has no interest in solving your problems. He is interested in only two things, making you afraid of it, and telling you who to blame for it.” (That may be slightly incomplete or inaccurate as to exact wording, but the meaning and sentiment remain clear) If we elect a fool into office, we have no one to blame but ourselves. And me? I insist on only being afraid of what I choose to be afraid of, and what the political pundits would have me be afraid of is just an illusion…. another of the lies, the creation of which they are very facile and experienced….. stay alert folks….

“Liberty don’t work as good in practice as it does in speeches.” — Will Rogers
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Unto every one that hath shall be given, and he shall have abundance; but from him that hath not shall be taken away even that which he hath. — New Testament — Matthew xxv, 29

This will be one of the shortest pearls ever, even including this superfluous opening. All I have to say here is what came to mind when I read it just now during my dive, which was, “Well, the bankers sure took this one to heart, didn’t they?”  That’s all… just think about it… which is more than any Christian would do….

Heaven Holds a Place for Those who Prey — Smart Bee
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“Whenever I’m faced with a difficult situation, I like to ask myself what my idol, Edward R. Murrow, would think; and I think Ed would call this censorship.  But I also ask myself what my other hero, General George Patton, would think; and I think George would believe this country needs to be cleaned up. Why, if George were alive today, he’d take two armored tank divisions into Hollywood and knock those liberal pinheads into the ocean!  So, as you can see, I’m a very confused man.  And when I’m confused, there’s only one thing that makes me feel better: I watch TV.” — Les Nesman, “WKRP in Cincinatti”

I find this to be, while amusing, a very, very scary, and uncannily accurate, description of how most of this country approaches life. When things become too confusing, they go watch TV, so they can find out what they are supposed to be thinking. I personally know a great number of folks who center their entire day around what is on TV; hell, before I got them out of that habit, my own kids were almost suckered into that sort of approach. Fortunately, my daughter inherited my love of reading and books, and my son turned his attention to the real world, immersing himself in kung fu for most of this free time.

But, in general, what is on TV is what most of America will parrot when asked what they believe. Very few of us seem to have perpetuated the habit of thinking about what we’ve been told; sometimes it seems as the bloggers I follow are the only ones who are doing so. I certainly see very little evidence out in real life that tells me that anyone is paying attention to this issue.

Mostly, the folks who question authority try to remain true to the system, pursuing their goals within the constraints of that system. But, it doesn’t work, as the vast majority of folks in this country come home from their slave jobs to flick on the TV and let the nonsense fill their heads up with stuff that keeps them quiet and content, like “The Simpsons” or some such….. SIGH……
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    Not much needs saying here… this fine fellow is here merely to express my opinion of politicians, popes, kings, queens, ayatollahs, bankers, CEO’s, and every other type of human who seeks to assume power over others…. so there!…. and to illustrate the old saw about a picture being worth a thousand words… in my case it is often 1500 words, so this image saved you all from that this morning…. nice of him, eh?
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However many holy words you read,
However many you speak,
What good will they do you
If you do not act on upon them?
— Buddha

My religious upbringing was pretty casual, since my parents weren’t particularly devout, at least outwardly. Most of my life we attended Presbyterian churches, but were never heavily involved. The whole story behind Christianity always seemed pretty improbable to me, even at the tender age of four or five when it was first introduced in Sunday School, where the kids in Presbyterian churches were sent during services to keep from either distracting the minister during his sermon, or to distract their parents from their nap during said sermon. (You can’t fool a four-year old about motivation….)

As I grew older, the things about church that first bothered me continued to grow in number, fueled most heavily by the actions of the church-goers. It always seemed to me that what was said in church on Sunday, and what actually happened out in the real world had nothing to do with each other. Nobody I could see was acting in a Christian manner anywhere but in church, and even then, it seemed pretty self-serving, as if the folks who were discussing morality were showing off for the preacher, more than they were invested in the morals themselves. (You can’t fool a teenager about hypocrisy….)

As my reading list expanded, I found that my suspicions and objections to Christian churches intensified, as I became more aware of what actually went on out in the real world, and was exposed to more religions and philosophies. It seemed, at least on the surface, that the proponents of the other big religions in the world were no less hypocritical in their actions than were the Christian, and further evidence of the accuracy of that observation has been in the news daily for a long time.

Nobody in the entire world, as far as I can see, really buys into any of the religions, unless they are so poor that they grasp onto the charitable aspects of their respective creeds in order to survive. I can find no religion, anywhere in the world, that has significantly advanced the cause of morality in humans; it generally has a negative effect instead, providing their constituents with reasons to practice immorality, as long as it is directed against those in other sects.

So, I continue to wage my own personal battle against the ignorance of reality that all churches demand of their followers, and promote rationality and reason as an approach to life, rather than encouraging people to submit to what, to me, is just another lie disguised as something supposedly “good for me”…. and I find the following statement to be extremely accurate, not only in the context of when it was written, but today as well…..

“The Christian ideal has not been tried and found wanting.  It has been found difficult, and left untried.” — Gilbert K. Chesterton (1874-1936), “What’s Wrong with the World
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It is unusual for me to find myself with nothing to say; I’ve never been unable or unwilling to form an opinion on almost anything, and being who I am, I’m not shy about sharing those opinions. But, I feel now, at the end of this morning’s effort, to be without anything useful to add. So, being the reasonable, rational person I am, I will stop now…. Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..


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

gigoid

Kowabunga!

Frankly blank, she pondered swiftly….

Ffolkes,
With reluctance, I approach my keyboard, shaking and nervous. There is something hidden in there, I know it. I can feel it, desperately poised to leap out and grab my fingers, making them form words from I know not where. If I give in, where will we go? How will I know if what is written will fly, or even walk? Will there be poetry? There is no way to tell, and the time is come to decide, for good or ill. I am afraid…. I am very afraid…..

Okay, now that is out of my head, we can get on with this morning’s normal business, or as close to normal as we ever get around here….. Sorry about the first paragraph; that stuff comes out and jumps onto the screen before I can get my head together. I think it is probably some part of me that wants badly to be paid for writing, as opposed to most of me, who just wants it outside the boundaries of my head, and I don’t care whether it’s rewarded in that respect at all. All I want is a bunch of “Likes” from my friends, and I’m good to go…. Considering how much I write, nobody’s going to want to pay me by the word, that’s for sure; they’d go broke in no time….

It’s all moot, though, so we’ll just get on with the daily Pearl…. always best to let the stuff that first comes out fly freely away, and get itself out of the way. It’s best not to mix that stuff with real pearls…. shall we dive?…..
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“We could never learn to be brave and patient, if there were only joy in the world.” — Helen Keller

Coming from anyone else, this would have less meaning; from Ms. Keller it assumes the aspect of eternal truth. If there is anyone in the world who suffered more to achieve self-hood, I have never heard of them, in all of my long years of reading and learning.

Having experience in working with the deaf, though never when combined with blindness, I can say without fear of contradiction that it takes a strong will and perseverance of unusual depth to be successful. Those who face the world with only three of the usual five senses of perception face a much more difficult path than those of us who can see and hear, and those who succeed, as did Ms. Keller, have indeed learned to be both brave and patient, in the finest sense of those words…..

Nothing more needs to be said about this, really. It is a powerful truth, given to us by someone who paid the full, complete price to learn that truth, and as such, it behooves us to listen, and to pay attention….
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“His ignorance covers the world like a blanket, and there’s scarcely a hole in it anywhere.” — Mark Twain

This year’s presidential election promises to be, if nothing else, an interesting spectacle. I am completely amazed at how the Republican nomination process has shaken down; the winnowing process was filled with ignorance, misguided appeals to fringe conservative groups, in-fighting, and all the usual nonsense that all the pundits go through during these events. In the end, they came up with….. Mitt Romney?

Yep…. perhaps the most dishonest politician ever to partake of the banquet of money the public payroll provides ( he has used his elected positions unmercifully to increase his own private wealth, taking advantage of insider knowledge and the “good-old-boy” circuit to the maximum) to come down the pike in many years. Well, not so many years, I suppose…. we did have an ex-CIA chief in the POTUS office not too long ago, and we all know how honest those folks are….

But, Romney? I’m sorry, it’s almost as if they have given up, and have acknowledged that there is NO ONE in the mainstream of the Republican pantheon of potential candidates who has any real connection to the American people. Romney is firmly entrenched in the 1%, and no matter how often he says otherwise, nobody is buying his assertion that he is not.

Not only have the rest of the party’s pundits given in, they seem to be letting him continue his policy of shooting himself in the foot every other day, by uttering some new lie. His repeated attempts to perform damage control are necessary, as he doesn’t seem to be able to speak without making something up. I know of two websites whose sole purpose consists of identifying each one of them, as they fact-check what he says every day, and every day find new instances of deliberate untruths…. It’s amazing, and would be amusing, if it wasn’t so scary….

It’s scary because, in spite of all his lying, in spite of his flip-flopping on policies according to whatever audience he is addressing, and in spite of his obvious lack of qualifications to BE president, his political machine keeps right on trundling down the public path to the Republican Convention, where his status as the latest incarnation of “The Great White Hope” will be formalized. The Democratic Party is, no doubt, celebrating almost every night, as he is doing their work for them…. They don’t have to say a word, just smile and point to Romney’s latest gaffes, of which there are legion…. Easy money, as far as I can see….

Now, as long as he doesn’t manage to fool enough of the voting public to make it close, we’ll be fine, and come December, all of this will be a memory of just another bad dream…. and if not, well, we can always call Al….

“He probably just wants to take over my CELLS and then EXPLODE  inside me like a BARREL of runny CHOPPED LIVER!  Or maybe he’d like to PSYCHOLOGICALLY TERRORIZE ME until I have no objection to a RIGHT-WING MILITARY TAKEOVER of my apartment!!  I guess I should call AL PACINO!” — Zippy the Pinhead
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“Just remember–when you think all is lost, the future remains.” — Robert Goddard

This is one of those pearls whose depth of meaning and relevance are not apparent at first glimpse. But, in examining it further, I have come to believe that this is something I hope that I gave to my own children, as it is an idea that can save one’s sanity, and one’s hope, in the face of whatever challenges life may present to us. Nothing that happens, no matter how all-encompassing it may be, can ever take away this simple fact; the future remains.

It is often the case that we spend a lot of useless time lamenting those events in our lives that set us back on our road to our goals, or in trying to fix whatever has gone wrong. When we are in that state, we are not looking at the entire picture that is there to be seen; we are focused on just what we are doing. It becomes easy to forget that by acknowledging the future, and its possibility for change, we limit our effectiveness at what we are trying to do, thus increasing our own difficulty.

By accepting the presence and power of change, we can use it as an aid to our progress, rather than as an obstacle to be overcome. Simple, like most deep truth, and effective…. the greatest gifts come in the smallest packages, it is said, and in this case, it is perfectly true…..
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“I have tried lately to read Shakespeare, and found it so intolerably dull that it nauseated me.” — Charles Darwin (1809-1882)

It seems I’m not as alone as I had thought in my lack of enthusiasm for Shakespeare. It’s heartening to know that someone with such a logical mind sees, as do I, Shakespeare’s deliberate obscurity as a vice rather, than the virtue it is made out to be in so many quarters.  I freely admit that some of what he wrote is wonderful, in spots, but 80% is crap, plain and simple, and I can only hope that he wrote it on deadline, and didn’t get paid much for it…. That would explain a lot…..

“The fact that an opinion has been widely held is no evidence whatever that it is not utterly absurd; indeed in view of the silliness of the majority of mankind, a widespread belief is more likely to be foolish than sensible.” — Bertrand Russell, Marriage and Morals

I offer in proof of my assertion the following excerpts from various works of his; if you can explain to me either their relevance, meaning, or artistic merit, please do so… I am listening…

“I will show myself highly fed and lowly taught.” — William Shakespeare (1564-1616), All ‘s Well that Ends Well — Act ii, Sc. 2

“One draught above heat makes him a fool; the second mads him; and a third drowns him.” — William Shakespeare (1564-1616), Twelfth Night — Act i, Sc. 5

“All his successors gone before him have done ‘t; and all his ancestors that come after him may.” — William Shakespeare (1564-1616), The Merry Wives of Windsor  — Act i, Sc. 1

“A mad fellow met me on the way and told me I had unloaded all the gibbets and pressed the dead bodies. No eye hath seen such scarecrows. I ‘ll not march through Coventry with them, that ‘s flat: nay, and the villains march wide betwixt the legs, as if they had gyves on; for indeed I had the most of them out of prison. There ‘s but a shirt and a half in all my company; and the half-shirt is two napkins tacked together and thrown over the shoulders like an herald’s coat without sleeves.” — William Shakespeare (1564-1616), King Henry IV — Act iv, Sc. 2

“Wherever the bright sun of heaven shall shine,
His honour and the greatness of his name
Shall be, and make new nations.
— William Shakespeare (1564-1616), King Henry VIII — Act v, Sc. 5

That’s probably enough… pile too many of these in the same place and the odor is incredible!  Besides, more proof can be found almost anywhere…. there’s a lot of this kind of crap floating around the pool…. My invitation stands, by the way; if you can show me how this stuff is any good, please do so! Otherwise, thanks for listening to my gripes….  🙂
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Hope is the thing with feathers
That perches in the soul
And sings the tune without the words
And never stops at all.

And sweetest in the gale is heard;
And sore must be the storm
That could abash the little bird
That kept so many warm.

I’ve heard it in the chillest land
And on the strangest sea,
Yet never in extremity
It asked a crumb of me.

— Emily Dickinson

I needed this…. While searching for something else, I came across this…. I’ve used it before, months ago, but it never pales. I don’t really have any comments, except…. thank you, Emily…..
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What an odd Pearl! I am sure of only one thing after this…. I’m done with it. Beyond that, I will make no prognostication. Probably a good thing, all in all….

Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you…..


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

gigoid

Kowabunga!