Paradigms, pundits, and puffy plebes….

Ffolkes,

“All men are born naked.”

~~ Carlos Eduardo Novaes ~~

ISS

The International Space Station

After performing the morning ritual sacrifice, which involves no loss of life for any creature larger than a microbe, I sat to begin composing today’s Pearl. At that point, I realized the futility of my task, and wept….

Of course, then I awoke, got out of bed, having again dreamed away most of the angst needed to rant, & began the routine which would take me to this juncture with a bright, inquisitive mind, and a healthy body…. That, of course, also failed in its ultimate task, as it was bound to do, having been a complete lie to begin with…. To be honest, it’s been a long time since I worried about a healthy body (another little white lie, but, bear with me… this isn’t easy, you know….), or, for that matter, a healthy mind. I do what I can, with this blog, to maintain at least an outward aspect of sanity, but, in sooth, who gives a shit?….

That having been made crystal clear, at last, I could easily go on to bigger and better things. However, I believe I’ll finish this blog instead…. On that oddly comforting note, I will use my executive authority to get us where we need to be…. Luigi, fire up the engines; we’re going in…. Y’all should probably put on the body armor today; it’s a new area of the oyster beds, and it hasn’t been thoroughly cleaned of all threats yet. Don’t worry, it’s safe especially if compared to any major city streets…. Besides, the only predators allowed walk on two legs, so, they’re easy to spot….

Shall we Pearl?

“All the secrets we may be able to keep from any and every god and human being do not in the least absolve us from the obligation to refrain from whatever actions are greedy, unjust, sensual, or otherwise immoderate.” — Cicero, On Duties

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Ensenada plus 035

    I’ve always enjoyed a capella music; it always impresses me to hear the sounds the human voice can make…. It seems this artist, Peter Hollens, has made himself a nice little career out of producing excellent covers of good music, using his voice as the sole instrument to create ALL the sounds of the various instruments needed to produce the sound he wants, and achieves, very well…. Excellent artistry, to be sure, and well worth a listen… Enjoy!….


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Lord of the Rings ~~ In Dreams

Peter Hollens

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13923408614402

    Today’s rant(ish) section is another blast from the past, since my angst seems to have decided to hide. This one is an odd little pearl, but, pretty good, all in all…. Enjoy!….

From 9/0/2013:

“An Irishman is not drunk as long as he can hang onto a single blade of grass and not fall off the face of the earth.” — Smart Bee

Okay, so this really isn’t a pearl…. but, it IS about the funniest mental image I can imagine; I literally burst out with a guffaw when I first read this, and almost lived up to the text meme, ROFLMAO…. Since I am taking off in just a couple of hours, this has to be a relatively quick creative process, so, for this first section, I’ll go with an old school pearl, a harlequin random variety, which is the quickest to come together, even though it is also generally the most obscure type…. go figure, eh?…. Let’s see what SB has for us today…..

“We should consider every day lost on which we have not danced at least once. And we should call every truth false which was not accompanied by at least one laugh.” — Nietzsche, Friedrich Wilhelm (1844-1900)

“I know not any thing more pleasant, or more instructive, than to compare experience with expectation, or to register from time to time the difference between idea and reality. It is by this kind of observation that we grow daily less liable to be disappointed.” — Samuel Johnson (Boswell: Life of Johnson)

“Regrets and complaints about relations are to be attributed to the same cause, which is not old age, but men’s characters and tempers; for he who is of a calm and happy nature will hardly feel the pressure of age, but for someone with the opposite deposition, youth and old age are equally a burden.” — Plato,_The Republic_, Book 1

“Just as there are laws of Conservation of Matter and Energy, so there are in fact Laws of Conservation of Pain and Joy. Neither can ever be created or destroyed. But one can be converted into the other.” — Spider Robinson

“If people are good only because they fear punishment, and hope for reward, then we are a sorry lot indeed.” — Albert Einstein

“If you want to know all about the sea, you go and ask a sailor, or a marine biologist, or an oceanographer, and they can tell you a lot about the sea. But if you go and ask the sea itself, what does it say? Grumble, grumble, swish swish. It is too busy being itself to know anything about itself.” — Ursula K. LeGuin

“Hello.  Just walk along and try NOT to think about your INTESTINES being almost FORTY YARDS LONG!!” — Zippy the Pinhead

Brilliant…. just brilliant….. I am humbled in the face of greatness…. Okay, I’ll explain this one, because it’s turned itself into an important pearl…. First, look at all of the first six, one after another, then consider them together. Try to imagine living your life according to the precepts implied in the statements….. Then, add in the last one, but, don’t allow it to color any of the others, merely append it as an example of what the first one is gives us, if we only let it….

Don’t fret if it doesn’t gel for you…. it’s all good, and tomorrow’s another day…..

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Comedy_Tragedy

    There is a new poem circling around in my head; I can feel it percolating. Since I couldn’t persuade it to come out yet, here is one from the archives, to tickle your fancy…. or not…. I like it….

Penance, Made Simple

After all the dross is sent away
a celebration can begin,
time will face up to space, to stay
willing, to shine from within.

Anger and confusion come in to share
brushing reason aside,
eager to welcome all that is fair,
alert to danger, eyes wide.

Re-gift the wicked with their own pain
stand with the just;
fail to partake of the ill-gotten gain,
living in honor, the only must.

Standing fast in the face of wrong
is its own prize and reward.
Holding on to truth makes us strong,
well worth working toward.

Little is left to chance by fate
our lessons are never free of cost.
Seldom does reality make us wait
only when alone, are we lost.

~~ gigoid ~~


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socrates

Socrates


This is rather a unique pearl…. It started out as a typical old-school pearl, with loose parameters, when I had a few free moments yesterday; within one minute, ALL of the following 13 pearls came up, with only a few in between them. When it was clear Smart Bee was done, I arranged them slightly differently than they came up, to fit the obvious conclusion…. All of these are me….

All are quotes I’ve tried to make part of my world-view, in one way, or one meaning, or another, at one time or another, for most of my life… I can’t say I’ve always been successful, except at the bozoid parts, but, I’ve worked hard at most of it…. Enjoy this little slice of gigoidness, ffolkes, if you wish…. Or, just, take ’em as they are, all good pieces of advice on how to get through life with more than the minimum required…. Naturally, 13 has always been my lucky number….

“He declared that he knew nothing, except the fact of his ignorance.”

~~ Diogenes Laertius (c. 200 AD) — Socrates, xvi ~~


“Draco Dormiens Nunquam Titillandus (Never Tickle a Sleeping Dragon)” — Hogwarts School Motto — J. K. Rowling

“Good generally conquers evil. Unless, of course, good is stupid.” — Smart Bee, echoing gigoid’s experience closely

“Hear twice before you speak once.” — The Ancient Genius, aka, anonymous

“I didn’t yield to temptation.  I came to a complete stop.” — Smart Bee, approved by gigoid as perfectly self-descriptive

“Success has ruined many a good man.” — Smart Bee, and many ancient and modern sages

“Success is women you don’t even know walking around your house.” — Saturday Night Live

“Learning is the best of all wealth; it is easy to carry, thieves cannot steal it, the tyrants cannot seize it; neither water nor fire can destroy it; and far from decreasing, it increases by giving.” — Naladiyar (c.5th-6th century)  Tamil ethical literature

“The survival of the fittest is the ageless law of nature, but the fittest are rarely the strong. The fittest are those endowed with the qualifications for adaptation, the ability to accept the inevitable and conform to the unavoidable, to harmonize with existing or changing conditions.” — Dave E. Smalley

“A tautologically redundant plethora of surplusage.” — Smart Bee, s/a

“When washing your face, can you see your true self? When walking, can you feel the rotation of heaven? When speaking are your words without guile?
When you shop are you aware of your needs? When you meet the suffering, do you help? When you meet conflict, do you work toward harmony?” — Deng Ming-Dao

“Life is silly but should be taken seriously.” — Smart Bee, approved by gigoid, again

Don’t ask me where I’m going,
Just listen when I’m gone
And far away you’ll hear me singing
softly to the dawn

~~ Pippin ~~


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I can’t say this Pearl came together perfectly, but, it was close. Given the handicaps under which I’m operating, I’m content with it. Since that is the ONLY requirement necessary, we’re done here…. So be it; gigoid has spoken. 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….


			

Celebratory moments on parade…..

Ffolkes,
Being a geek never felt better…. yesterday, in frustration, I uninstalled Smart Bee again from my computer, then re-installed it, and gloryoski, Skeeter, it worked! It’s back, and looking grand, I must say….. SIGH…. I feel much better now……

So much better, I slept well, and woke early, just to get a good start on this Pearl…. it’s really good to have material to work with. I’ve grown dependent, I guess, on having sufficient quotes from other smart ffolkes to stimulate my thought processes, and not having them was taking its toll. Now I feel so good, another poem dripped out last night while I was basking in the glow of a successful install. Not great, but pretty good, I think…. and all original, so that has to count for something, right?…. It all rhymes, too, so Mrs. Lowe and Mr. Olsen would be proud…..

Without further ado, let us get on with today’s process….. Shall we Pearl?…..
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“OVER the underpass!  UNDER the overpass!  Around the FUTURE and BEYOND REPAIR!!” — Zippy the Pinhead

In celebration of the return of SB, I offer this brilliant aphorism from Zippy as thanks, and as a tribute to the power of nonsense in Life. If it weren’t for the concept of ridiculousness, I’d be just another bozo on the bus, rather than a sharp, progressive purveyor of reason and honor…. and Pearls of Virtual wisdom might never have been liberated from their shells….

In the Harry Potter books, and movies, I was particularly impressed with Ms. Rowling after reading the part about Boggarts in the second novel, and finding out the spell that banished them, to wit: Ridikulous! shouted in stentorian tones while thinking of what you fear in a comical venue. Such sharp insight! It was a perfect, perfect piece of story-telling, and gave me a whole new perspective on the depth of the whole Hogwarts experience…. “Never tickle a sleeping dragon” indeed!….. With that in mind, and in recognition of the return of plenty to a world in dearth, here is an old school pearl, with a message about how to live well, and happily….

“Don’t try to have the last word. You might get it.” — Lazarus Long

“Ignorance is not bliss — it’s oblivion.” — Phillip Wylie

“Stereotypes are like a supermarket. They are convenient, economical, and useful. They do our thinking for us. We don’t have to waste time trying to make sense of our ignorance. Stereotypes slice through the niceties of language, tide us over the loose ends we don’t understand and wrap up into a comfortable package our narrow – mindedness about everything and everybody except ourselves” — Chuck Stone (Washington Post 6/3/96)

“Most folks are about as happy as they make up their minds to be.” — Abraham Lincoln

“A man who carries a cat by the tail is getting experience that will always be helpful.  He isn’t likely to grow dim or doubtful.  Chances are, he isn’t likely to carry the cat that way again, either.  But if he wants to, I say let him!” — Mark Twain

“Selfishness is not living as one wishes to live.  It is asking other people to live as one wishes to live.” — Oscar Wilde

“As God is my witness – I am that fool!” — Gomez Addams

And, on that note, we shall forge onward with renewed vigor, and a carefree heart!……
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Confidentially Paranoid

Only when the bright sunlight of dreams draws nigh
can the dark glass of reality factor true value..
Destiny’s horses run in fear as time goes dry,
for grappling with fate in such traitorous venue.

In pallid costumes made of graven cast-off tales,
fallen angels and demons show the measure of faith.
No sad transactions should escape these well-marked trails,
no angry relatives cast insults to a sedentary wraith.

Meaning can always hide in literal cold intent,
yet show mere facets of honor to perishable youth.
Sincere contentions leave with sorrowful bent,
while bastardly arguments fill in poorly for the truth.

Gone are moments filled with florid blasts of rhyme
left to moulder on the shoulders of unreasonable hope.
Only courage can save these measures of unspoken time
to gather new issues of powerfully broad and painful scope.

~~ gigoid
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It is time, the Walrus said, to speak of many things…… or at least one…..

“Shakespeare was an intellectual ocean, whose waves touched all the shores of thought; within which were all the tides and waves of destiny and will; over which swept all the storms of fate, ambition and revenge; upon which fell the gloom and darkness of despair and death and all the sunlight of content and love, and within which was the inverted sky lit with the eternal stars — an intellectual ocean — toward which all rivers ran, and from which now the isles and continents of thought receive their dew and rain.” — Robert G. Ingersoll (American lawyer and orator)

Now, to look at this, one might think that this Ingersoll person was a smart fella, having obviously read a lot of Shakespeare. I am forced to point out, however, that being able to read does not necessarily mean one can think, or that one is entitled to an opinion. There are clues within this statement that reveal its weaknesses, the foremost of which is that it is a large load of bullshit…… I, too, have read a lot of Shakespeare, though not by choice. At first, I read him because it was assigned in school by some ignorant English teacher who had fallen under the normal delusion taught in most schools about Will, i.e., his stuff was good…. when in reality, most of what he wrote is just a pile of shit piled really high….. Afterward, I read him to find further examples of his failings to show people in proof of my assertion, to wit: he is the most over-rated, and most egregiously pandered to author of all time….

Oh, he was prolific, and wrote a lot of stuff that is fairly good, by any standards…. but, given the massive amount of stuff he wrote, that is merely proof of the law of averages. For the most part, what he wrote is too wordy by half, obscure in meaning that clouds the story, or has no connection to the story at all, and tends to a flowery saccharine flavor by the choice of his words. He did achieve a large popularity in his own time, either due to good press, or the normal bad taste of the public; I don’t really care. In today’s world, his story lines are trite, and tend to stick to common themes that every author treats; in addition, his use of slang went completely overboard, and has turned what may have been decent rap in his day, into such tripe that it just sounds like random noise, similar to the common run of rap today…. it amazes me how many bad musicians there are in the world…. but that is another story….

In order to demonstrate for you the absolute nonsense that flowed from his pen, I’ve included some samples of his work below…. they pretty much speak for themselves….. badly…… so I’ve added my comments in parentheses…..

O, my offence is rank, it smells to heaven;
It hath the primal eldest curse upon ‘t,
A brother’s murder.
— William Shakespeare (1564-1616), Hamlet — Act iii, Sc. 3
(Ooooh, such tension and horror….. NOT…. merely mundane, as far as I can tell…..)

“The venom clamors of a jealous woman poison more deadly than a mad dog’s tooth.” — William Shakespeare
(I’ll bet Will was real popular with the women of his time….. NOT)

Where the bee sucks, there suck I;
In a cowslip’s bell I lie.
— William Shakespeare (1564-1616), The Tempest — Act v, Sc. 1
(Huh? What? Is this part of the play?…..Which part?…. Which play?)

O, that he were here to write me down an ass!
— William Shakespeare (1564-1616), Much Ado about Nothing — Act iv, Sc. 2
(Don’t worry, Will, I’m here…..)

A plague of sighing and grief! It blows a man up like a bladder.
— William Shakespeare (1564-1616), King Henry IV — Act ii, Sc. 4
(I suppose if your society doesn’t yet have rubber, or balloons, a bladder is the best you have…..)

Most forcible Feeble.
— William Shakespeare (1564-1616), King Henry IV — Act iii, Sc. 2
(Oh, aye, what a handy turn of phrase…. NOT… What does this mean?….)

They fool me to the top of my bent.
— William Shakespeare (1564-1616), Hamlet — Act iii, Sc. 2
(Uh, to where? I think more likely, he’s the one trying to fool…. the audience….)

O, never say hereafter
But I am truest speaker. You call’d me brother
When I was but your sister.
— William Shakespeare (1564-1616), Cymbeline — Act v, Sc. 5
(Honestly, this sounds like something I’d write when really, really drunk, and think it was hilarious…..)

Okay, that’s probably enough for one day…. I’ve got well over four pages full of stuff of his like these, so there is a lot to choose from…. Just doing what I can to spread the truth, as I see it…… and this truth needs telling, to get society away from this ridiculous celebrity worship when it comes to him, and to artists like him, who rely on public opinion more than Art to determine the value of their material…. Call me Ishmael, if you must…. just don’t forget to call me…..
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Boy, that was great fun! Lots of material, old friends to pick on, and a new poem, which is always better out than in…. can’t beat that with a stick. I’m going to sign off here, so as not to tempt Fate into retribution so early in the day….. 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!

It’s National Hand Grenade Day…..

Ffolkes,
As the clock struck noon, the moon rose majestically in the west. Farther on, the homeless hunters preyed upon a dilapidated group of sun worshiping bank clerks, while the maitre d’hotel shouted for more wine. Belatedly, a large, crimson cake was delivered to the kitchen door, unbeknownst to any of the appropriate managerial cadre. A heffalump charged the main desk, only to retreat at the first sign of snow from the chandeliers; no animals were harmed, or even challenged in the making of the video version. As quietly as possible, one of the late arrivals poured his quota of abuse, and ketchup, into the designated slot in the south wall. The band played on…..

Whew! Writing absolute nonsense is harder than it looks from the other side. No way in hell am I going to take THAT one any further! It about twisted me up into knots as it is; trying to create more of it would put me in bed for days. But, every once in a while, I just have to get that stuff out of my head, before it takes over and makes me write poetry, or something equally frightening. Of late, the poems I’ve written haven’t been too bad, but if this kind of stuff got added into the mix, there’s no telling what might happen. The universe itself could come to a crashing halt, or split in two, or something, and I have no desire to cause a rift in space/time…

My head feels lighter though, and that is a good thing. It always feels better out than in, and there is less extraneous angst to deal with; always a bonus, in my mind. Since we seem to have some good omens for it (though I’m not superstitious at all, of course….) we should probably head right into the regularly scheduled program….. Shall we Pearl?…..
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“No law can be sacred to me but that of my nature.  Good and bad are but names very readily transferable to that or this; the only right is what is after my own constitution; the only wrong what is against it.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882)

I was about 15 or 16 years old when we first read this in English class, and I remember distinctly when it hit home. I was at home, studying the Essay on Self Reliance as homework. I remember how difficult it was to plow through Emerson’s style of writing, which is thick and convoluted; one must read slowly, and think about what has just been read, to fully ascertain the point he is making at the time. When I came across this line, and thought about it, I experienced an epiphany of understanding, and a lot of what he said in the essay became clear. Most simply put, he admonishes all to “Trust Yourself”…….

“I never submitted the whole system of my opinions to the creed of any party of men whatever, in religion, in philosophy, in politics or in anything else, where I was capable of thinking for myself.  Such an addiction is the last degradation of a free and moral agent. If I could not go to Heaven but with a party, I would not go there at all.” — Thomas Jefferson, Letter To Francis Hopkinson, Paris Mar. 13, 1789

Tom Jefferson lived prior to Emerson, but had a similar approach to life, and to thinking. Individualism could be said to be Jefferson’s God; to him, each man was responsible for making himself into what he wished to be, and the self-reliance so ably encouraged by Emerson came to him naturally. Though a Christian by choice, he constantly challenged the church authorities in his writing, accusing the priestly hierarchies of the same crimes I am chastising them for today, to wit: twisting the word of Jesus Christ, manipulation of the teachings, and power-seeking behaviors more suited to barbarian chieftains than priests. Tom saw clearly the need for the continued separation of church and state, as he firmly believed that combining the two would inevitably lead to the loss of liberty he feared, and for which he fought so hard.

As we can see today, he was right. He feared both the church leaders, and the bankers and corporations. He wrote on numerous occasions of his lack of trust in those entities, as he clearly saw that they were inimical to individual freedom, and would eventually try to subvert the liberties we enjoy, by slow encroachment. Guess what, ffolkes….. he was dead right. Between the “corporate personhood” enjoyed by the elite fat cats, and the brainwashing carried out on a daily basis by the churches, the public has been manipulated into willingly giving up many of their rights for the sake of feeling safe. And why do they fear for their safety? Why, because the politicians, supported by the preachers, have convinced them that the rest of the world is out to get them, and wants to take away what they have; for God’s sake, they’re heathens!…..

Much of the nonsense that is foisted upon the unsuspecting public would be less believable if more people believed as Emerson does, and made up their minds on their own. Instead, most folks give in to their laziness, and, unwilling to think for themselves, allow the preachers and pundits to fill their heads with lies and manipulations. This lack of personal responsibility is what is killing this country; only those who are unwary can be fooled. One who takes responsibility for themselves cannot be fooled in that manner, for they are aware of the machinations that others will attempt, and react accordingly….. One can only hope that Emerson’s essay on Self Reliance becomes a best seller again, and people awaken from their self-induced state of somnolence…..
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Lamenting Empathy, No Grace

Strange, strong, passions burn from within
Selling nothing short, nor out
Consumed, loudly, failing to mark the spin
Sad, resigned, in singular redoubt.

Fallow grounds for twisted seed
Become fated, grow, and die.
Experience never fills critical need
Save perhaps once, in ages gone by.

Shouting in severe, dulcet tone
Brittle, flaking, destiny floats away
Making noise, rattling the bone
Simple ageless fears held at bay.

We mask our illusions in faux belief
Tied to reality by matter of rote,
Send them postcards, without relief
Consecrated time, forever remote.

~~ gigoid
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The following has been edited for the ironically impaired……

“The craving for power which characterizes the governing class in every nation is hostile to any limitation of the national sovereignty.” — Albert Einstein (1879-1955)

I’ve been watching….. and I’ve come to the conclusion that the Republican bozos (Romney and Ryan) have neglected to consider one crucial factor in their tactical planning for the pre-election posturing done by both parties. That crucial aspect is commonly known as the Complete Asshole Factor….. This important principle is one that every successful candidate has learned to obey, while every loser in an election could be said to have neglected it, to their everlasting regret….

They’re assholes; they can’t help it. Complete assholes. They chose, years and years ago, to spend their lives pursuing their own selfish desires, to the exclusion of the rights and/or desires of anyone else, and the slimy stench that is produced by constantly spouting off the primary substance that issues from the area in question permeates everything they try to say or do. Often, since they HAVE learned to at least try to disguise it, they appear to be normal, reasonable men, but the smell always manages to come through, giving people the first clue as to the content of their speeches… If it looks like crap, smells like crap, and sounds like crap, it’s probably crap…..

“As scarce as truth is, the supply has always been in excess of the demand.” — Josh Billings

One might think, given the above, that the prospective political wannabees now touring the nation by bus, so the yokels can get a closer glimpse of them, would use at least a small portion of truth in their campaigns. But, from what I’ve seen so far, they have no intention of ever coming within shouting distance of the truth.

Unless, of course, one counts their statements about healthcare, women’s rights, human rights for LGBT citizens, immigrant rights, and Social Security; all of those are things they’ve promised to eliminate, and I think we can truthfully say they aren’t lying about those intentions. Of course, when asked about any of it in public, they hem and haw, and try to shuffle the question off with a distracting counter-attack of the questioner. so they don’t have to actually give an answer, knowing it would be a lie……

Draco Dormiens Nunquam Titillandus (Never Tickle a Sleeping Dragon)  — Hogwarts School Motto

I have a feeling that Romney and Ryan have not remembered to take this into account. By their constant lying in public venues, they are actively tickling the dragon of outrage that sleeps in every patriot’s heart. Although this election is seeing a decrease in the number of young folks involved, I believe the actions of these two rogue pundits are becoming intrusive and obnoxious enough to awaken the largest dragon we have; the middle class, of all ages. Their constant stretching and bending of the truth, when they bother to address it at all, is becoming a rock in the shoe of the American people.

They have made statements that are guaranteed to lose the vote of seniors, women, gays and alternative lifestyle citizens, Jews, Muslims, Hispanics, animal rights activists, the poor and homeless; all of them have received notice that they will have no rights at all under the administration they are promising…. and I don’t think those folks are going to sit still for it….

Come November, I think the dragon will awaken, and will turn its dangerous attention to the Republican party’s blatant attempt to send our society back to the middle ages…. Romney and Ryan will learn the last part of the old statement about why one shouldn’t trouble dragons…. because to them, you are crunchy, and good with ketchup…..
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I have tried to live up to Ralph Waldo’s admonition today; all of the material created today is original, outside the attributed quotations. So be it…..  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!