Twelve reasons to spit, rather than swallow….

Ffolkes,

“Look beneath the surface; let not the several quality of a thing nor its worth escape thee.”

~~ Marcus Aurelius Antoninus (121-180 AD) — Meditations, vi, 3 ~~

11-8-2014 002 (2)

    To look at this piece of furniture, you wouldn’t believe it to have any particularly extraordinary qualities, beyond a simple functionality and inoffensive appearance…. By using Marcus Aurelius’ advice, however, we find a peculiar aspect of its existence which may not be explainable by any normal means…. I got the chair at a thrift store, as part of my thus-far-never-ending quest to find a chair that is suitable to sit in for the time I need to be in front of this computer, to compose, to read, and to otherwise multi-task, in short bursts when I can sit for a while without having to squirm, or get stiff… In trying it out in the store, it seemed to be a bit low, but, otherwise might work well for a time….

Well, as it turns out, it IS too low to type comfortably, but, is quite comfortable for watching a video, such as one of my Sherlock Holmes stories, or for reading the news, if no great amount of mouse work is needed…. Unfortunately, the chair also seems to be so comfortable, whenever I’ve sat in it for more than 5 minutes, I start falling asleep, sitting up, which will always give me a stiff neck, from dropping my head forward when I drowse…. This has happened five times now, without fail…. It’s getting to the point I’m beginning to believe the chair has been infused with some kind of magic cannabis cream, or just plain magic, to cause it to turn into a sleep chair, rather than an office chair…

It’s okay, though, I don’t mind having one spot where I know I can get drowsy; the way my sleep pattern goes, I can use all the spots like that I can find…. It’s also given me another intro section, without the need to go off on anyone’s religion, or take a side trip to the land of Odd, (which isn’t far away, in my head…), or even find some actual introductory remarks of a literary nature…. All I had to do is engage in some minor hyperbole, with a dash of stretching the truth of its effect on me, and there we were, two paragraphs down, and running strong….

Of course, right about HERE, we will start to see it fall apart, as my imagination begins to tire, having not yet consumed sufficient coffee, or sugar, to fuel such a complicated, stressful task as this has turned out to be…. I also suspect, if I want to be able to finish this out, without resorting to marginally legal acrobatics, I’m going to have to end it now, before it grows any hair…. The fuzz is already too thick for scissors, and my lopping shears are all dull from using them on my cacti….

It is, no doubt, a good thing the opening to the real world is right over there; we seem to have made good time…. This is what happens when we are lucky enough to start with a decent run at the wall; it doesn’t draw any blood, and we get where we need to go with less fuss, and less chance of litigation, which always pleases my lawyers….. Oops, sorry, got to talking and almost missed the turn…. Hold on ffolkes…. today’s missive could be a bit of a tough roe to hoe…. not to mention the possibility of cloning that is always a risk on Sundays…. (bet you didn’t expect me to remember, did ya?….)

For now, though, it is enough to know, we’re on our way, and nothing the government can do will stop us now….

Shall we Pearl?

“I was contemplating the immortal words of Socrates, who said… I drank what?” —  Shared by Chris Knight (Val Kilmer), Real Genius

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Today’s video is a political cartoon from Mark Fiore, who makes brilliant short animated videos commenting on current world and national events…. I could not figure out how to embed the video, without joining a web streaming site, which I didn’t wish to join…. But, just follow the link below, and you can see this one, which is another outstanding observation regarding the recent midterm elections…. I won’t ask you to enjoy it, but, I will ask you to watch, and reflect on the information it has to impart….

Oh, heck…. Here, here’s a video for your morning laugh….

Adults Taste Baby Food

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“For some reason the little Senators make us laugh.” — Smart Bee

“But a short time elapsed after the death of the great reformer of the Jewish religion, before his principles were departed from by those who professed to be his special servants, and perverted into an engine for enslaving mankind, and aggrandizing t heir oppressors in Church and State.” — Thomas Jefferson, [letter?] To S. Kercheval, 1810


Oops…. It seems there is a bit of snark going on between the delusional leaders of one of the more delusional religious organizations, and the political representative their particular group managed to land in the Senate…. It all makes a pretty good example, for me, of how the separation of church and state has been quietly eroded to the point the religious group feels comfortable in making public their influence over their flock members who inhabit the halls of government, using the blackmail of guilt and threat of excommunication to try to force their desires to the forefront of the political agenda.

Now, the bishop of the church, in this case, is in trouble, for bringing it all into the light of day, more than any other reason…. I doubt very much the other church elders had intended for their influence to be outed in that manner, so, they will publicly chastise him, but, in the end, won’t really do much to him, other than muzzling his mouth by moving him to some position not accessible to the media for comment…. Having the Senate majority leader as a church member is a position those leaders will NOT jeopardize for any minor bishop’s cluelessness…. They’ll sacrifice him faster than Pontius Pilate gave up Jesus…

“I have short-term memory loss, though I like to think of it as Presidential eligibility.” — Paula Poundstone


I think I’ve become more angry at this president than any other since, well, I guess the Junior shrub made me maddest, but, then, Bill Clinton was a Bozoid of major proportion, too…. In fact, I think, in my entire life, there is only one man who was elected to the presidency who managed to garner my respect, without making me angry for having to listen to constant, unrelieved lying, or plain stupidity…. and that President (the ONLY one for whom I will capitalize the title….) was probably the LEAST effective of all the twentieth century office-holders, because he spent his entire time in office being neutralized by a Congress held by the opposing party….

His name was Jimmy Carter, and though I don’t usually admire preachers, he is the only HONEST politician I’ve ever seen at that level… the ONLY one…. and, he is the only president in the last century who didn’t made a career out of dishonesty, cheating, and public theft… and I mean the ONLY one…. Every other president, from the beginning of the last century, to the latest rogues elected in this century, has lied to the American public, almost without pause, from the first time they opened their mouths on national TV….

I had hope when Barry was elected; I didn’t know much about him, and some of what he said promised some hope of reform, in at least some areas…. But, he has been one of the greatest of my disappointments, as he has lied the MOST, of any president in recent memory, which is quite a feat, given the past few presidents…. It was unexpected that Obama would be a worse liar than either of the two Shrubs, but, he has proven time and again he is NOT going to tell the entire truth to the American people, especially about his clandestine activities, spying on his own citizens without compunction, and with impunity, thus far…..

“A politician is a man who stands for what he thinks the voters will fall for.” — Smart Bee

If I were the type to use religious expressions, I’d thank God for Edward Snowden, a man I believe future generations will regard on the same level as Patrick Henry, Thomas Jefferson, and Nathan Hale, as one of our greatest patriots…. It pisses me off no end that Barry the O continues to bad-mouth him, as well as refusing to acknowledge his own culpability, as do the rest of the 455 kidnappers of the American Dream, who inhabit the halls of Congress, the White House, and the Federal courthouses…. I accuse them all of treason, not lightly, and not in fun…. Assholes, every damn one of them, only concerned with increasing their personal power, and lining their pockets with our money…..

I know this is the ranting section, so such vituperation isn’t out of place here…. However, this morning I’m a bit on edge, and typing is getting harder every day, so, I’ll leave my rant at that point, which, some would say is quite enough…. It isn’t every day that I accuse the entire government of the US of treason…. but, as I’ve mentioned before, I’m not one to keep from calling a spade a spade, nor am I one to suffer fools gladly….

But we, who name ourselves its sovereigns, we,
Half dust, half deity, alike unfit
To sink or soar.

~~ Lord Byron (1788-1824) ~~

~~ Manfred, Act i, Sc. 2 ~~


Our government, long ago stolen by corporate and religious influence, to work the will of those who prey on the weak and ignorant, depending on their gullible trust in authority to allow them to lie, cheat, and steal without consequence, has now gotten to a point where they don’t even bother to hide what they’re doing very hard…. They don’t care any more, as they know that nobody has the means, or the wit, to turn against them…. They have fooled 98% of the population into believing them, in whatever they say, and know they won’t be disturbed during their cleaning out of the public’s pockets…..

Bah, humbug! I’m pissed….. and there isn’t much I can do, except this…. So, having done this for today, I’ll leave it here for now…. Stay alert, ffolkes, and call them a liar when they lie… Maybe there is still a chance, if a couple more Ed Snowdens come forth, and tell the people how much they are being fooled, and screwed….. Until then, I’ll keep yelling at them, and about them, as often as I can….

Who could imagine
That they could freak out in Kansas
Who could imagine
That they could freak out in Washington D.C.
Everybody’s clean, it can’t happen here, no, no
And they thought it couldn’t happen here
They were so sure it couldn’t happen here
It can’t happen here

 ~~ Frank Zappa ~~

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On a day such as this, it’s gotta be Bukowski…. He’s the only one real enough to suit my crusty mood….

hello, how are you?

this fear of being what they are:
dead.

at least they are not out on the street, they
are careful to stay indoors, those
pasty mad who sit alone before their tv sets,
their lives full of canned, mutilated laughter.

their ideal neighborhood
of parked cars
of little green lawns
of little homes
the little doors that open and close
as their relatives visit
throughout the holidays
the doors closing
behind the dying who die so slowly
behind the dead who are still alive
in your quiet average neighborhood
of winding streets
of agony
of confusion
of horror
of fear
of ignorance.

a dog standing behind a fence.

a man silent at the window.

~~ Charles Bukowski ~~


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Today’s old-school pearl came together in a rather fractured fashion; nonetheless, it came out well…. Well, it came out, anyway…. I’m not altogether certain the point it is trying to make is one of particular import, other than to each of us on an individual level…. I guess you should just let it flow over you, and if it feels right, let it flow through…. Otherwise, just take it all as good advice for living a life that makes some kind of sense, on a larger scale than the merely personal…. Hmm…. I suppose that may be asking a bit much of an obscure seven-star pearl, but, we’re like that around here….

“Integrity has no need for rules.” — Albert Camus

“When the need arises — and it does — you must be able to shoot your own dog. Don’t farm it out — that doesn’t make it nicer, it makes it worse.” — Lazarus Long, from Robert A. Heinlein’s  “Time Enough For Love”

“In poverty and other misfortunes of life, true friends are a sure refuge. The young they keep out of mischief; to the old they are a comfort and aid in their weakness, and those in the prime of life they incite to noble deeds.” — Aristotle

“As a rule, there is no surer way to the dislike of men than to behave well where they have behaved badly.” — Lew Wallace

“Lampis the shipowner, on being asked how he acquired his great wealth, replied, “My great wealth was acquired with no difficulty, but my small wealth, my first gains, with much labor.” — Epictetus (c. 55-135 A.D.)

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

How lov’d, how honour’d once avails thee not,
To whom related, or by whom begot;
A heap of dust alone remains of thee:
‘T is all thou art, and all the proud shall be!

~~ Alexander Pope (1688-1744) — To the Memory of an Unfortunate Lady, Line 71 ~~


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Once more, I’ve pushed beyond my zone of comfort to get this done…. Oh, don’t worry, I’m not saying it makes me special, or that any admiration is due; I’m just glad it isn’t toxic, or overtly offensive to anyone but a preacher, a politician, a corporate snakehead, a pimp, or a myrmidon…. They, of course, may choke on it, as far as I am concerned…. For now, I’ll just bid thee adieu, until tomorrow….

See ya, ffolkes, and remember what Tommy Toilet always says… “Always wipe thoroughly, kids! Rectal itch is NO PICNIC!”© (R. Crumb, 1966, or so….)

Sorry, couldn’t help myself….

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….


		
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Measuring infinitesimal increments may take a while….

Ffolkes,

I’m tired….. in my head…. I’m tired of writing, tired of sitting, tired of not being able to do enough to keep my mind from chewing on itself. I have a mind that requires rather a lot of stimulation, to feel as if it is being utilized in a way that maximizes its qualities, which are extensive, to be sure, although never as much so as could be wished…. In other words, I’m smart enough to have a strong need to keep busy, but, not so smart as to have all the answers I’d like to have…. Just smart enough to know how much there is still to learn, is the way I like to think of it….

My tiredness is, I think, a result of having written this blog each morning, with only a few minor failures, every single day for almost three years…. In that time, I’ve made some changes to the structure, and tweaked it until I pretty much have it how I like it….. and, according to the WP stat bots, I keep getting new followers…. Just yesterday, two new names showed up as new followers of our blog here at ECR, one of which is an old blogging friend, who just now followed, after almost 3 years of visiting the site, and leaving an occasional ‘Like’….. So, I know that there are at least a few ffolkes who read it every day…. Out of the 375 ffolkes who have hit the button to follow, at least a few MUST come by each day, right?….

In addition, I send the Daily Pearl out via my own email to 47 others who have been receiving them now for over a dozen years…. When I worked for the State, it was sent out each day for about six years to almost 400 employees at NSH, all of whom were addicted to receiving them in their morning email, to start their day….. Conceivably, I could still send them to those people…. but, it annoys their IT folks, as 400 emails sent in a group tends to burn up a lot of bandwidth, causing a spike in their traffic, and the possibility of a network slow-down…. Of course, I figure that’s their own damn fault for not spending enough on infrastructure to handle the traffic, but, hey, they’re friends, so I don’t fuss with them….

All in all, I’ve been writing A LOT for the last couple of years, since retiring…. which, in the ultimate sense, is a good thing…. But, I’m tired of the frustration of constantly feeling as if what I have to say is extremely important for mankind at large to be aware of, but, never having that message heard by anyone who NEEDS to hear it….

If we are to have any real chance at surviving the upcoming events in the environmental arena, all of which are a result of our own foolish asininity, (speaking from the viewpoint of one who knows quite well what NEEDS to be done, but, has no clue as to how to get people to get off their asses to do it….) well, if we ARE to survive, we’ll need to first admit the need to do so…

As you are well aware, if you’ve been here previously, I write a lot of such “gadfly” rants, exhorting the public to wake up, to pay attention to what the corporate assholes, political assholes, and religious assholes have been up to, because what they’ve gone and done is going to kill all of us if we don’t put a stop to it, NOW….

It needed to be done yesterday, and, it certainly won’t help to do it tomorrow; tomorrow, (metaphorically) we’ll be DEAD (literally).

We, as a species, need to get off our collective asses and kick the stupid, selfish, ignorant bullies, who are busily killing us all, straight into the ocean, where their sorry, no-doubt bitter-tasting carcases can at least provide the sea life with some little bit of extra protein…. which would comprise the FIRST useful, unselfish act of their lives….

These rants are generally justified with evidence, or, if nothing else, a link to where such evidence may be found; I try not to make assertions without some sort of proof, as I’m unwilling to base them merely on articles of faith…. a habit of writing and communicating which, I may point out, is more than you’ll ever get from a political pundit, a preacher, or some corporate asshole….

THEY will all expect you to believe whatever comes out of their mouths, without ANY sort of proof, other than their version of the Bible, or, hilariously enough, their “word” as to it’s veracity…. We’ve all heard a pundit on TV, saying “Trust me!”, with the obvious sub-text of, “I’d never lie to you!”…. which, of course, is the first lie….

My rants, however, in spite of the number of followers who evidently stop by only now and then, are not getting into the mainstream consciousness of society, which is where the need for them is strongest…. The message I’m putting out is one that isn’t going to help much unless it is seen or heard by a very large number of people, who would then, hopefully, use the information and stimulus contained therein to form the nucleus of a movement, that eventually would lead to the eradication of the centuries-long oppression of mankind by the slave masters, and our eventual survival on this beautiful planet….

Or, the message will be lost, as are, thus far, ALL the other common sense messages that might be of help to us, buried in the cacophony of noise that is always roaring in the background of TV, radio, and the internet, never to be of any help, or aid us to survive beyond the next hundred years or so that are left to us….. all because of the insane blindness of those who have usurped human culture for their own purposes….

I’d rather there was a greater chance for us to survive, but, there’s not a lot I can do about it…. People are gonna do what they WANT to do…… That seldom means anything intelligent…. and, sadly, that’s just the way it is….

Shall we Pearl?…. We may as well, we’ve got nothing better to do…..

“Every human being on this earth is born with a tragedy,and it isn’t original sin. He’s born with the tragedy that he has to grow up. A lot of people don’t have the courage to do it.” — Helen Hayes
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Obviously, the intro section this morning fulfills any ranting requirements that may be in place, anywhere…. So, that means I can go bananas in this section…. Well, maybe not fruit, but, perhaps, a rutabaga, or other vegetable would do?….. As you can see, my bozo wants to come out to play, and, it’s best all around if I don’t get in the way of that…. So, I’ll give that side of me the reins, and we’ll see what SB can do for us today, in the way of a group of pearls to start us off in the proper direction to get us where we need to go….. where it will, hopefully, come to a halt….

“Quemadmoeum gladius neminem occidit, occidentis telum est.” [A sword is never a killer, it is a tool in the killers hands.] — Lucius Annaeus Seneca “the younger” ca. 4 BC – 65 AD

“A student brings something to discuss, saying, “I don’t know whether this is really good, or whether I should throw it in the wastebasket.” The assumption is that one or the other choice is the right move.  No.  Almost everything we say or think or do  — or write — comes in that spacious human area bounded by something this side of the sublime and something above the unforgivable.” — William Stafford

“Actions lie louder than words.” — Carolyn Wells

“I never understood why God decided to endow the military man with His big brain when bone and marrow are all that he needs to execute his purpose.” — A. Einstein – Ideas and Opinions

“I’m sorry, Dave. I’m afraid I can’t do that.” — HAL 9000

“Do you think there’s a God?” “Well, SOMEbody’s out to get me!” — Calvin & Hobbes

All nature is but art, unknown to thee;
All chance, direction, which thou canst not see;
All discord, harmony not understood;
All partial evil, universal good;
And spite of pride, in erring reason’s spite,
One truth is clear, Whatever is, is right.

— Alexander Pope (1688-1744) — Essay on Man, Epistle i, Line 289

Well, it’s a tough one, I’ll admit, but, those are always the best kind, you see, because, hey, challenge?….. Believe it or not, it IS a good one…. just a trifle abstruse…. In fact, upon reflection, it’s a lot like that word, abstruse….
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In truth, I suppose, the translator of this poem is the one who deserves a lot of the credit for the power, and the clarity, of the images and language that make this so compelling a poem…. Whomever is responsible, it is one of my all time favorite poems, and I include it today, again, with great pleasure….

Shui Tiao Ko Tou

Will a moon so bright ever arise again?
Drink a cupful of wine and ask of the sky.
I don’t know where the palace gate of heaven is,
Or even the year in which tonight slips by.
I want to return riding the whirl-wind! But I
Feel afraid that this heaven of jasper and jade
Lets in the cold, its palaces rear so high.
I shall get up and dance with my own shadow.
From life endured among men how far a cry!

Round the red pavilion
Slanting through the lattices
Onto every wakeful eye,
Moon, why should you bear a grudge, O why
Insist in time of separation so th fill the sky?
Men know joy and sorrow, parting and reunion;
The moon lacks luster, brightly shines; is all, is less.
Perfection was never easily come by.
Though miles apart, could men but live for ever
Dreaming they shared this moonlight endlessly!

~~ Su Tung-p’o ~~

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This was already an old rant last time I posted it, in June of 2013…. and, since I spent all of my fresh angst in the intro section today, this will have to suffice, to fulfill any other legal standards that may apply…. I think it will do, just fine, as it remains as valid today as the day I first wrote it….

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“Necessity is the plea of every infringement of human freedom.  It is the argument of tyrants; it is the creed of slaves.” — William Pitt (1759-1806) speech on the India Bill, Nov. 18, 1783

I had not intended to start with a political rant, but this just came up, so here we go…. This is as true today as it was in 1783, perhaps even more so. Since 9/11/01, when those fanatic idiots carried out their insane delusions of grandeur on the world stage, the “necessity” for Homeland Security has been the watchword of the political pundits who unfortunately are in charge of the legislative and executive branches of our government. Bill after bill after bill keeps coming down the pike and bulling their way through into becoming law, or even worse, is created by executive order, without the benefit of review by Congress, useless as that may be.

The entire incident that happened that day was blown completely out of proportion by the media. Yes, it was a tragedy, in which something over 3000 American lives were lost, in three separate incidents. The videos of those planes hitting the buildings in New York must have been replayed a thousand times before noon, all over the country, until every American, and for that matter, anyone in the world, who had access to a TV was informed of what had occurred….

The American media, and the political machinery that manipulates it so effectively, then proceeded to flood every channel with the after-effects, making sure that the sorrow and fear of every person they could find willing to speak of it on camera was put on the evening news, thus, ensuring that no rational, dispassionate examination of the events would take place. Before the first day had passed, the national reaction had been whipped to a frenzy, stirring the fears of every paranoid in society, and making it seem as if the entire nation was filled with anger and vengeful righteousness. Though I didn’t join in the paranoia, I could feel it happening all around me, as normally intelligent people became so angry they lost all sense of proportion, or for that matter, all sense of truth.

In the ensuing months and years, whenever the politicians have wanted to distract the nation from what they were actually doing, all they needed to do was mention the words “terrorism”, or “national security”, to immediately pull the attention off of them, pointing it firmly at the pitiful  group of fanatical Muslims they blamed for the attacks (completely ignoring all the valid reasons those same politicians had provided those fanatics  in the first place, reasons specifically designed to stimulate an attack….). Thus, the Hunt for Osama bin Laden was on! (“We’ll get him, by God”… We did, of course…)

In this country, as a result of those attacks, approximately 5000 American lives were lost (that figure is larger, by quite a lot, than the actual number, purposely…. it is near enough to correct to make the point…). At this time, in the quest to find Osama bin Laden in Afghanistan, over 50,000 Afghan civilians have been killed. In Iraq, which we somehow decided to invade, even though they had nothing to do with 9/11, well over 250,000 civilians have died to soothe our national pride.

(Note from 2014; the number of casualties in both arenas has, naturally, grown on all sides, with the greatest number of deaths, by far, having been suffered by the Afghan and Iraqi civilian populations, just as the number of our American casualties remains, by many thousands of deaths, the smallest of any of the participants…. This amounts to, literally, millions of Afghan and Iraqi deaths, and fewer than 10,000 Americans…. go look at them yourself if you don’t accept my figures….)

In that same period, WE lost another 1000 or so soldiers in fighting and bombings. And, as a side effect, the US Bill of Rights has been effectively eliminated, by Executive Order, disguised as Homeland Security (June, 2013 — Now authorized by what is so laughingly called the National Defense Authorization Act of 2012…. signed by President Obama on New Year’s Eve of 2011, while everyone was partying, not paying any attention to their so-called “rights”…..)

“Hatred is the coward’s revenge for being intimidated” — George Bernard Shaw

So, what is my point here? My point is this…. those pathetic fanatics killed more, of people THEY considered to be the enemy, than they had ever been able to kill, one time….. ONCE….. Since that one time, our country has killed more than 300,000 civilians in retaliation (amendment from 2014: make that >1 million…).

You can call it what you like, I call it nothing more than schoolyard revenge by bullies. The events of that day provided every politician in this country the opportunity to wrap themselves in the flag, not to proclaim their patriotism, but to manipulate the unreasonable fear they created in the public to keep them from realizing the truth of the matter.

That truth is this: we are in no real danger from Al Qaeda,  or from any other splinter faction terrorist group, nor have we ever been in any real danger.  We never really WERE in MUCH danger….

Oh, sure, they may be able to pull off stunts such as this one occasionally, but for the most part, the world has gotten pretty good at either catching them in hiding, or stopping their plots before they actually carry them out. Governments have a LOT more resources than terrorists, no matter how rich they may be personally. Most times, their piteous efforts kill a handful of people, and destroy a building or two, and that is the extent of it….

No, the pathetic, desperate people who become terrorists, in direct concatenation of intent, action, and responsibility, are actually created by those same political pundits, who, after bombing their villages, killing their families, and destroying their homes, are now reviling them as monsters, using all their bloated resources in hunting them down.

The terrorists I see in the news are not a real threat to anyone; they don’t have the wherewithal to perform more than one act of violence at a time; they cannot wage a war, they can only try to act as guerrilla forces, at best. Mostly, they are just sad schemers, planning glorious (in THEIR twisted minds….) deaths, that ultimately have no meaning, other than to provide the Western politicos another unreasonable fear to use against the American public, in order to continue the raping and pillaging among their own people.

The entire issue is one that is repugnant to me; I have watched in horror, not as terrorists have been hunted, but as the rights of the American people have been taken away in the name of “security”. Security from what? We don’t need more security from terrorists; the techniques for dealing with it are well-established, and effective, as they employ the very same methods used by the fanatics to achieve their ends, and many more not available to them, because of the depth of their resources, and their lack of morality. (Note from 2014: See, Eric Snowden, NSA, “US Cyber-Security Forces”, etc….) No, we need more security from our own pundits, who have utilized these tragic events for their own benefit, to the everlasting regret of every true patriot….. Bloody fucking assholes, every one of them…..

“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 Judgement of Dr. Johnson, Act III

So be it…. gigoid has spoken….

3/8/2014: This rant has been updated and edited to conform with the most current version of Reality, including, but not limited to parenthetical comments, and actual textual edits to improve the flow of thoughts… I also have to say, with this one, I hit the nail right on the fucking head, so, I can say, without any doubt whatsoever…

So be it…. gigoid has spoken, again….
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I’d suppose it’s a function of having done this repeatedly for a relatively long time, but, gosh, Wilbur, I think I’m getting the hang of this…. Even if not, it feels as if I am, so, I’ll take comfort in axiom #1, to wit: “I think I am. That’s close enough.”….. See ya tomorrow, ffolkes, if YOU’RE lucky….

Just kidding…..          🙂

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

dozer3

Bagels never travel in first class….

Ffolkes,
My mind’s eye is clouded and grey this morning. No visions of beauty, or even of horror. No trite phrases, no witty repartee, and worst of all, no nonsense floating around in my head, clamoring for release. It’s all a void, empty space that I may have to try to rent out. I have fallen into writer’s limbo, that terrifying landscape where ideas run off the moment they arrive, and creativity is limited to sock colors. Where material is not merely hard to find, but actively resistant in spite of all efforts on my part to find something, anything to write about……

A hundred sinister eyes peered out from the darkness surrounding the traveler, closely following his progress on the road leading to the castle of the local lord. The traveler took no notice, his hooded face hidden as he stared downward at the back of his horse, seemingly asleep. In the darkness ahead, the vague outline of a building took shape, growing clearer as he approached, until a gatehouse revealed itself, tall and grim, seeming to lean over the roadway leading to the bridge over the river, which was now audible, as a low rumbling just at the edge of consciousness. In the swirling mist crawling out of the river, the traveler sensed a presence……

See, even my fantasies are failing me…. in re-reading this, it is apparent that this might make an entry for the Bulwer-Lytton Contest next year… that is the contest to find the worst opening paragraph that can be written each year, with a monetary prize for the top three entries, along with notice from publishers who follow such contests, looking for new talent. It’s certainly bad enough, and that second sentence in the second paragraph definitely stretches the boundaries of good writing; it is a run on-sentence of major proportions…..

Ah, well, fuck it…. let’s go Pearl, instead……
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“I must decline your invitation owing to a subsequent engagement.” — Oscar Wilde

Ah, Oscar! Such a wonderful way with insults he had! This is so subtle that I believe 99% of the English speaking world would accept this from him and never realize they had been insulted…. I’ll have to remember this one the next time I get invited to attend Sunday services somewhere….

Shoot, I know for sure I could say this to my own brother, and he wouldn’t realize it….until he was sitting in church, and took a moment to reflect upon it…. but then he’d decide he must have mis-heard what I said, and would forget it…. He’s not the brightest bulb in the box, my brother….but he is very good hearted, one of the few Christians I can tolerate for more than a few minutes…. And if you ever repeat what I said about him, I’ll deny it, right up to the point where you show it to him online…. then, I’d just grin and tell him he’s heard worse…. which he has….

I’ve always enjoyed insults, as a study, not as a habit. I do use them on occasion, when deserved, but generally I try to be play nicely with others. A well-delivered subtle insult, the kind I like best, is like this one from Oscar; couched in words that outwardly appear to be quite amicable and friendly, yet devastatingly sharp upon reflection. The very best will not even be recognized as an insult at all, but I like them when they wait an hour or two, and then come back and poke the recipient right in the mind’s eye….. after I am safely in another part of town……

I used to collect insults, and once had a list of the 100 most effective put-downs, as collected by the publishers of Mad magazine…. Some of them were pretty corny, even for me….such as “You should be on the stage…. There’s one leaving in an hour….”  That’s just sad, when you think of it…. but, it does get the point across. Then there is this type…. “So, did they ever catch the guy?”  “What guy?”  “The one who ran over your face….”  Pretty silly, yes?  Yes….

And silly is a word that could probably be accurately applied to this pearl. So accurate, it struck home, and I’m now no longer in the mood for insults…. we’ll just have to go on to something else a bit more engaging….. Shall we?….
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“You govern a kingdom by normal rules;
You fight a war by exceptional moves;
But you win the world by letting alone,
How do I know that this is so?
By what is within me!
The more taboo and inhibitions there are in the world,
The poorer the people become.
The sharper the weapons the people posses,
The greater confusion reigns in the realm.
The more clever and crafty the men,
The oftener strange things happen.
The more articulate the laws and ordinances,
The more robbers and thieves arise.”
— Tao Teh Ching #57, Lao Tzu

This is obvious. But don’t look at it too carefully, or it becomes unobvious, until you look at it for a long time, when it becomes obvious again. –Smart Bee

The above two pearls were sent to me by Murphy, so I have to write about them. How do I know he sent them? Well, when I was cruising my dB of quotes, the excerpt from the Tao Teh Ching was the very first quote that came into view after opening the program. I debated a discussion, as it is one of the most important of the lessons in that book.

But, I decided to go on, and find something a bit more amenable…. So I hit the key to bring up the next quote, and the second quote, the message from Smart Bee, came into view….. obviously, at least to me, the two were from Murphy, hence their presence here for me to comment….. although I don’t know why I should, since Murphy is such an ass. But, knowing him, if I don’t, I’ll pay for it, so…. here we go…

Each of the assertions in the above quote from Lao Tzu’s book is a subtle lesson, designed to teach the reader about the nature of the Tao.  As it says in the very first chapter of the Tao Teh Ching, the Tao that can be named is not the true Tao. To the Occidental mind, this seems to be a contradiction, and achieving an understanding requires a loosening of the rigid patterns of thought that are typical of the western mind. One must learn to hold two seemingly contradictory ideas in their mind simultaneously, to allow the meaning of each to mingle, and blend with the other, until the true nature of Tao is revealed, even though it cannot be touched, or seen, or heard.

This subtle process is difficult for westerners to use, as we tend to think in a straight line, from a to b; to understand the Tao, one must first understand that, to the eastern mind, a IS b. Instead of viewing the world as subject to cause and effect, the eastern way of looking at the world views cause and effect as the same concept, but looked at from a different vantage. As I said, subtle, but not completely inscrutable….

And now I know why Murphy sent them to me…. If one considers the second quote, and uses the lines from the Tao Teh Ching as the subject of discussion, then it is obvious. But don’t look at it too carefully, or it becomes unobvious, until you look at it for a long time, when it becomes obvious again…..

🙂   Murphy was obviously telling us that, in order to understand the eastern way of thought, use the second quote as the process for examination of the idea, and one can find their way through to an understanding that they formerly could not see….See, now what was so hard about that?…..
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“Eternal Vigilance Is The Price of Liberty” used to mean we watched the government – not the other way around.” — Bill Stewart

I don’t know who this Bill Stewart is, but he sure nailed this one…. but then, the American public lost its will to vigilance some years back, and we are now reaping the results of that lack of attention to what is important. The PTB, (Powers That Be) comprised of the beloved ruling class and their myrmidons, the priestly hierarchies, have been brainwashing the American public now for oh, I’d say about a hundred and fifty years or so. Since the confusion generated by the Civil War in the mid-1850’s, the PTB have relentlessly waged war on each of the freedoms that are guaranteed to us by the Bill of Rights and the Constitution.

First, a corrupt Federal judge made a landmark decision regarding businesses, and the rights thereof, giving “corporate personhood” to any corporation, but most specifically to those who paid him for that decision. This, in its essence, makes profit a right for these corporations, and just about any kind of process they may use to make that profit is made legal by this law. In other words, the law guarantees them a profit, no matter how much they may lie about their products, or to what lengths they may go to obtain a profit….

Since the beginning of the 20th century, this country has been involved in at least four major conflicts, and they all took place in the first half of the century. WWI, WWII, Korea, and Vietnam shoved the nation into war time culture, exactly as Field Marshall Goering, of the the Third Reich, explained when he was tried at Nuremberg for his war crimes. The PTB convinced the  public that our nation was under attack by the forces of Evil…. Evil that was given a different face for each war. And, at the end, each war found the rights of the average citizen curtailed just a little bit more….

In the latter half of the century, the country was not forced into battle until our oil supplies became problematic. The PTB were having a harder time coming up with a face to put on the ones who are reportedly attacking us, until Saddam came along. Since the first intervention in Vietnam in the 50’s and 60’s, to the intervention in Middle Eastern conflicts in the 1990’s, to now in 2012, all of our wars have been illegal, in my mind, according to our Constitution.

Ostensibly, Congress is the only entity who is authorized to declare war. But, time after time, beginning in Vietnam, the President of this country has used his Executive powers as the Commander in Chief to engage in wars in Kuwait, Irag, Afghanistan, and probably a few places that haven’t been published.

Each time we are dragged into another conflict, using the same old tired story of being under attack, the PTB manage to place more restrictions on the unsuspecting public, until many of the rights we were given in the Bill of Rights have now been eliminated.

We can no longer gather to protest the government’s actions; if we do, we are “disturbing the public peace” or we are “serving the interests of our enemies”, thereby turning ordinary American citizens into criminals for actions that used to be protected by the Constitution. It is no longer considered legal to criticize the PTB; it’s unAmerican and a threat to National Security….

Our vigilance has been spotty at best, and the PTB are very well versed in the scientific methods of controlling large numbers of people; they have been practicing their skills for thousands of years. They know exactly how to phrase their words to inflame the public, to make them afraid, and thus set themselves up as the saviors of society. And they know exactly who to target with their rhetoric…..

Their primary targets are the same people who look at Mitt Romney as a man of character, and cheer him on as he makes his bid to get into the highest seat of power in the land, never realizing that they will be counted as his very first victims…. This man has NO interest in making things better of the average American. His words and actions have clearly shown that he is one of the elite, the super rich, who are not subject to the laws the rest of us must follow, and if elected, he will waste no time in making life a living hell for anybody making less than $250,000 a year….

I’ve been watching the government now for about 60 years, and every word of what I’ve written above is based upon what I’ve seen and heard from them in that time. None of it is made up. The PTB in this country, and in every country in the world, live only for their own aggrandizement, and have no interest in making life better for the average man or woman. They are only interested in maintaining the power that they have, and seek only to solidify their stranglehold on the remainder of society.

If you think otherwise, I challenge you to offer some kind of evidence for that. All the evidence that I have gathered, and witnessed, tells me that I am not wrong to mistrust the politicians and priests, because everything they do is designed to keep me , and you, and the rest of society in the role of victim. They’re good at it, they’ve practiced a lot….

Obviously, this is a subject I can rant about for days, which only makes sense, as I have a lot of years of experience at watching the ruling class in action. But, the rest of the day calls me, and my butt is getting tired of this chair….. so, I’ll leave this here, and merely say this…The situation in the world today is a result of NOT being vigilant, of not paying attention to the PTB, and assuming that they are looking out for our interests.

Well, we were wrong, and now we are paying the price, in the loss of those freedoms that made this country the world’s example of how the common man can be free. Now we are merely another example of how the wicked and corrupted in society can completely dominate the law-abiding masses, who allow themselves to be turned into sheep….. SIGH, and we showed such promise!…..

“When you stay on the tracks, ignoring the facts, you can’t blame the wreck on the train”. — from the song, “You Can’t Blame . . ”
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Well, I certainly had a bit to get off my chest, didn’t I? Hopefully, I didn’t put anybody to sleep; I do tend to get carried away when I’m in the flow. But, we can all heave a big sigh of relief, and get on with 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!

Consequently, she didn’t moult that year….

Ffolkes,
Pixies were pulling at my hair, but my head was pounding like a hammer on an anvil, and I didn’t want to sit up. I opened my eyes, to be greeted by the sight of the ugliest little person I’d ever seen. He (that’s right, he….apparently, there are male pixies, too) wasn’t real happy, if his expression was any indication. Hovering about two feet away, ragged old-grey wings flapping, with a mop of fly-away hair and an ill fitting tunic, chewing on the stub of a nasty smelling cigar, he looked like a miniature punk leprechaun with a bad attitude, and sounded like a manic frog…..

“You great lout! Get your bloody arse off my front door, you bleeding idjit!” I looked around, and saw that I had ended my previous night’s drunken stroll through the Irish countryside at the foot of a great old oak, inadvertently blocking the entrance to the angry imp’s house in the base of the tree. My befuddled brain finally kicked in, and I realized I was in a very unstable position, and had best be careful…. Pixies are not known for the sweetness of their disposition, and can be vengeful when crossed. I tried out a tentative smile, and clearing my throat, rumbled out, “Top o’the morning to you, kind sir!”  The pixie folded his arms, tapped his foot, and just glared at me….. I got the feeling he wasn’t in a particularly friendly mood…. a feeling that was justified, as he proceeded to turn me into a donkey…..

Enough of that…. he deserves whatever happens to him, the bozo, for getting so drunk he didn’t watch what he was up to.  Never a good policy in pixie country…… but it got me through the initial stages of today’s Pearl, so that is a good thing. Theoretically, anyway….. Now that the nonsense has had its moment, we can get on with our scheduled dive….. shall we Pearl?…..
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There is always a second right answer.  Look beyond the obvious. — Smart Bee

I am glad that I found this quote this morning. I was looking for something to go with a discussion around the events that took place in Colorado yesterday, wherein a young man shot and killed 12 people, and injured many others, before being subdued and arrested. I have not engaged in reading any of the stories about it, as they all follow the same pattern, and repeat the same cliches trying to describe the horror of the scenario, and to describe the terror felt by the victims. The news coverage of events of this nature vary little from one to the next; the only difference lies in the number of victims, and the place it occurred.

I don’t watch the stories, but the headlines always give enough information to satisfy my level of curiosity. The part of these events that interests me is always the amount of outrage and dismay that is expressed by those who are not even involved. People from all over the world will write articles condemning guns, or lamenting the victims, or expressing sorrow, or otherwise giving their reaction to the story. One of the reactions that is common after an event such as this is from the people who would like to see ALL guns taken off the streets, and make it illegal for citizens to even own a gun.

This to me is the reaction of a scared child. Yes, terrible things happen, and sometimes those terrible things are perpetrated by some idiot who has managed to get his hands on guns. But, it is folly to blame the guns themselves for the deaths of those people. The person is responsible, not the guns. But, to these frightened children, the very idea of guns is too scary to deal with, and they would like to see reality changed to suit their fears. It’s kind of like saying that “oh my, cars cause over a million deaths a year. Let’s get them off the streets!” It is an over-reaction, common to those who typically refuse to stand up for their own rights, preferring to allow the government to tell them what to think.

I agree that it is tragic that events like this should happen, and I feel bad for the victims. I also feel bad for the idiot, because only a soul that is in extreme distress could ever consider such actions. If it were to happen in front of me, I would not hesitate take him down, and put him down, like a sick dog, but I would do so in sorrow, knowing that he is a broken man. This event will mark a moment in time that none of the victims will ever forget, and it will change their lives in some way, for certain. But, to let these events cause us to make poor decisions about guns is an error in thinking, and can lead to the loss of more rights than we have already lost to the fear-mongers.

Living involves risk. This is a truism, and is not subject to debate. One may prepare for that risk by making themselves strong and educated regarding the extent of the risks, and dealing with those risks in an adult fashion. Or, one can retreat to their childhood, and give over the handling of risk to the authority figures in our lives, and feel snug and safe in their little delusional bubble. 

What these people fail to understand is this: prohibiting guns, or making them illegal, is NOT going to make guns go away. It will just drive them underground, and make it harder to keep track of them. The risk will be even greater, because NOW there is nothing to stop criminals from victimizing others, other than the police, and we can see already how little effectiveness the police have in stopping events like this.

This shit is going to happen, whether guns are legal or not. I am personally unwilling to trust the government of this country, or of any other, to protect me and my interests. If they have guns, I want mine, because otherwise there will be no reason at all for them to keep from taking from me whatever they want. Police in this country are NOT to be trusted; most of the time they have a poor opinion of the public, and a sense of entitlement that puts them above the law. The same goes for politicians; I’m not going to trust them any further than I am the police. Probably even less, as they have shown time after time that they are not to be trusted. If they can’t be trusted with my money, I’m certainly not going to trust them with my guns….

Attitudes adjusted, while you wait. — L.A. Police Car Bumper Sticker

I’m not overly concerned whether or not anyone agrees with me on this; everyone is entitled to their own opinions. Some will say that I am calloused and indifferent to the pain those people felt. Well, they are free to say whatever they like…. The simple truth is that I feel very sorry for all the victims, and their families, knowing full well that they are now looking at years of therapy and healing before they will ever be comfortable again. But it is also the simple truth that I am not going to get all worked up over something that happens all the time, and will continue to happen as long as the world remains so overpopulated that we are like rats in a cage, fighting and biting each other over the limited resources.

“Paradoxically though it may seem, it is none the less true that life imitates art far more than art imitates life.” — Oscar Wilde

If one wants to get outraged over needless deaths, then let’s begin a dialog about the soldiers in Afghanistan and Iraq who continue to die for no good reason. We were told that the wars in those two countries were started to “get Osama bin Laden” and put an end to  terrorism. Ten years and trillions of dollars later, bin Laden is dead, and terrorism is NOT ended. Probably, more than 12 soldiers are killed every day in both countries, but there is no outrage that I see….

So, let us not engage in the orgy of feelings, and outpouring of outrage, over an event that, while not normal or desirable, should nonetheless not be a surprise. And, let us not thrash about in fear, and center our anger on the wrong target. Guns are not the problem; people who are broken are the problem, whether they are shooting people in a theater in the mountains, or passing laws in a building in Washington D.C.  The answer is not to get rid of guns; that is never going to happen. The answer is to fix the broken people…. and you can take that to the bank….

“Americans like to talk about (or be told about) Democracy but, when put to the test, usually find it to be an ‘inconvenience.’   We have opted instead for an authoritarian system *disguised* as a Democracy.  We pay through the nose for an enormous joke-of-a-government, let it push us around, and then wonder how all those assholes got in there.” —   Frank Zappa
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A Drunken Man’s Praise Of Sobriety

Come swish around, my pretty punk,
And keep me dancing still
That I may stay a sober man
Although I drink my fill.

Sobriety is a jewel
That I do much adore;
And therefore keep me dancing
Though drunkards lie and snore.
O mind your feet, O mind your feet,
Keep dancing like a wave,
And under every dancer
A dead man in his grave.
No ups and downs, my pretty,
A mermaid, not a punk;
A drunkard is a dead man,
And all dead men are drunk.

William Butler Yeats

The sober nature of what I’ve written so far today demands a bit of relief…. who better for that than Yeats?….. Enjoy!
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“All through human history, tyrannies have tried to enforce obedience by prohibiting disrespect for the symbols of their power. The swastika is only one example of many in recent history.” — American Bar Association task force on flag burning

Where did we get lost? When did my country lose the not just the feeling, but the meaning of freedom? The above statement is an indication of how far we have come from the basic ideas that the founding fathers originally fought for in the late 1700’s. The very fact that we must even consider the issue shows how many people have come to believe differently. In today’s society, it is becoming politically incorrect to speak of these subjects, to question the motivations of those who seek to gain office, or to question those in office. If one speaks out to question anyone in a position of authority, one is labeled as “un-American” or “Communist”, or “Socialist”. Or, even worse, “un-Christian”….

The separation of church and state was one of the bottom line reasons for the American Revolutionary War. I’m not an idiot, so I realize that money motivates as much, or more, than does idealism, and the OTHER bottom line reason was just that, the bottom line. Taxes, of course…. Our founding fathers, as tired of losing money as they were of being told to worship only one way, decided that it was enough reason to set up a system of government that kept them separate. They realized that the churches and the banks were the greatest threats to a free society, so they made an effort to keep them from influencing government…..

“In every country and every age, the priest has been hostile to Liberty.” — Thomas Jefferson

But, 200 years of chipping away at laws and social mores, and we now see that many of those freedoms are threatened, by the forces of Evil, otherwise known as ‘corporate bidness’ and ‘da priesthood’….. Now, set up in opposition to the current President, who has shown his commitment to change, we have a candidate who combines the worst (or best, depending on your view….) of those two groups, Mitt the Twitt, the richest, sneakiest Mormon mouthpiece you will ever see. This man has already, before even becoming the official candidate of his party, shown himself to be in favor of big business, racism and bigotry, and completely against any sort of reforms that would benefit the average joe…. yet there are millions of “average joes” who blindly follow what he says with open mouth, closed mind, and bated breath, just because he isn’t black….

The election of 2012 may go down in history as a pivotal moment in the history of this nation. This election will clearly indicate the state of mind of this country, as the two ostensible candidates represent extreme poles of opposite beliefs, only one of which remains true to the principles upon which this country was founded. We now will see what direction we will take in the next years…. either onward to a brighter future, or downward toward extinction…. Each of us will need to make a decision about which one we are willing to fight for…. because a fight will surely be coming…. and the sides will be hard to tell apart, as both will call themselves Americans…. Only one side will be right….

“After a time, you may find that ‘having’ is not so pleasing a thing, after all, as ‘wanting.’  It is not logical, but it is often true.” — Spock, “Amok Time,” stardate 3372.7.
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As a chef, I know that sometimes the best stuff comes when you just throw stuff in as you go, never knowing what you’ll end up with, but knowing it will be delicious. Today’s Pearl may, or may not, reach that level, to be worthy of the definition of “good stuff”. Time will tell, as somebody said recently….    🙂     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!