A schlemiel, or a putz?… Not an easy choice….

Ffolkes,

There are moments, when I sit to begin each day, when my mind wanders, into places that other people know not…. which is something about which they should be very glad…. But, in a real sense, that could easily be said of just about anyone’s mind, not just mine, so, y’all probably have an idea of the kinds of places I mean; I don’t believe for a minute that I’m all THAT different than the rest of mankind, even if a great deal of the available evidence says so….

This difference is one I’ve always tended to cultivate, actually, as the general run of ffolkes in the world are involved in stuff that holds no interest for me; they pay attention to people that I consider to be manipulative and self-serving, and spend a lot of time wasted, to my way of thinking, engaging in activities that don’t either improve their lot, or make them, and those they love, happy, both of which I see as our primary goals in this reality. Other ffolkes, I know, seem to think there are goals more worthwhile, but, to my mind, those two cover all of our REAL responsibilities in Life….

Anything else you hear in place of those activities is most likely something someone else told you, or convinced you to believe, in spite of how silly it sounds, or how much it doesn’t seem to help at all…. I know that all of my life there have been numerous silly asses who have tried to convince me of the rightness of their ideas (about God, about Life, about Government….), each of them more strident and more insistent than the last….

Fortunately, in my mind, I learned at a young age (4-5 years…) how to spot them, determining back then to NOT listen to them, as they were only trying to get me to do what THEY wanted, not what I thought I needed to do…. and somehow, what seemed right to me, with my young, unfettered mind, and no prejudices, was that what THEY were telling me was a bunch of bullshit; it was ALL so unbelievable, I couldn’t buy into it, so I’d just nod my head, and go my way without bothering to pay much attention…. I believe it drove several Sunday School teachers to drink….

I’m not sure what prompted this, except possibly the email I found in my inbox this morning…. Supposedly, it’s from Google, but, the link it wants me to connect to is suspicious, to say the least, (it connect to a private domain, with a dot.me suffix, so, I suspect it’s some hacker, phishing for whatever idiots he can find to click blindly on the link, just the way they are instructed to do in the letter, which threatens to close my account if I don’t click on it…. I didn’t, of course, and will check with Google later….. Somehow, I don’t think they’re sending out official emails at 0317 AM, to get people to verify their accounts….

But, because most people in this country are programmed to obey instructions from official sources, this guy will no doubt end up with a lot of fools who are giving them a clear path to steal their information, all because they never learned to use the crap detector their brain came equipped with when they were born…. They forgot, or got distracted, and never used or registered the software in their head that allows them to see the world with clear eyes, unhindered by the delusions/illusions that much of the world uses as their basis for belief…. I’ll say this, it’s a lot simpler when you can see the shit coming, ffolkes; it allows one the time to duck, thus saving us from getting hit in the face with that crap, or getting it on our clothing….

Okay, so, there you have it…. A complete, unbearably long, complicated, rant-like diatribe, right there at the front of the Pearl, where it can do the most damage, and serve as today’s excuse for an intro…. Six paragraphs should certainly be enough to satisfy any official myrmidons, and the unofficial ones aren’t armed, so I don’t pay them any mind…. For now, this will do, and, since my thumb and wrist are beginning to get rather painful as I type, it would no doubt be best to get on with today’s effort….

Shall we Pearl?…..

REVEILLE, n.  A signal to sleeping soldiers to dream of battlefields no more, but get up and have their blue noses counted.  In the American army it is ingeniously called “rev-e-lee,” and to that pronunciation our countrymen have pledged their lives, their misfortunes, and their sacred dishonor. — Ambrose Bierce, “The Devil’s Dictionary”

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Since my thumb is paining me, I’ll switch this intended rant about Ed Snowden, and the aftereffects of his heroic act of bravery, to a newer model Pearl, where I will provide links, then comment on the contents of the included articles, and the subject of those reports…. Let’s see what I’ve collected for us to poke at today….

http://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2014/may/09/westminster-may-have-to-concede-edward-snowden-had-a-point

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/may/10/the-battle-to-retake-our-privacy-can-be-won-in-the-halls-of-congress-really

https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2013/08/guide-deceptions-word-games-obfuscations-officials-use-mislead-public-about-nsa

https://www.eff.org/nsa-spying/wordgames

http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/politics/2013/07/nsa_lexicon_how_james_clapper_and_other_u_s_officials_mislead_the_american.html

“First as to speech.  That privilege rests upon the premise that there is no proposition so uniformly acknowledged that it may not be lawfully challenged, questioned, and debated.  It need not rest upon the further premise that there are no propositions that are not open to doubt; it is enough, even if there are, that in the end it is worse to suppress dissent than to run the risk of heresy.  Hence it has been again and again unconditionally proclaimed that there are no limits to the privilege so far as words seek to affect only the hearers’ beliefs and not their conduct.  The trouble is that conduct is almost always based upon some belief, and that to change the hearer’s belief will generally to some extent change his conduct, and may even evoke conduct that the law forbids.” — [cf. Learned Hand, The Spirit of Liberty,– University of Chicago Press, 1952, The Art and Craft of Judging: — The Decisions of Judge Learned Hand, — edited and annotated by Herschel Shanks, The MacMillian Company, 1968.]

The five or six articles above are a series of reports on the NSA spying fiasco, complete with some articles that show us just how the assholes who run the spy agencies, and the politicians who are supporting them in  their paranoia, all tend to use a different set of words than the other English speaking members of this country, having decided to assign new meanings to old words, so they can justify the lies they tell on a regular basis, merely pointing at their actual words, and telling us we didn’t understand what they actually meant by them….

I won’t belabor the point here, as the articles are pretty clear about how they do it, showing EXACTLY what words they have altered to suit their purposes, thus, in THEIR minds, making what they say the truth, not the lie it actually is, to anyone using the language in a normal fashion. They do it on purpose, to try to hide their chicanery, and, in many cases, they may actually BELIEVE their own lies…. which makes them all the more dangerous to the rest of us….

“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

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/may/10/judge-says-arkansas-gay-marriage-ban-is-unconstitutional

This one is here not because it is terribly controversial, (to me, this is no longer a question of anything but time until the laws of this country reflect reality more closely in this respect….), but, rather, because it is yet another example of the STUPIDITY displayed by so many in government….. Once again, because the Constitution is what it is, the illegal discriminatory laws are overturned by yet ANOTHER Federal judge who can read….

Yet, in spite of this, and in the face of EVERY OTHER decision that preceded it, in every case where such discrimination is challenged, the idiot assholes in the Arkansas Attorney General’s office are planning to appeal this, just as all the OTHER fools who keep trying to force their own beliefs on the rest of us keep trying to do, in the eight or nine states where this identical scenario has already been played out….

Talk about banging your head against the wall, to show your objection to having built it in the first place; it’s rather counter-productive to refuse to see what is real…. Sad to say, though, these folks are accustomed to believing many things which have no basis in reality, so I suppose it isn’t really surprising they would keep performing the same unreasoned response to an issue whose conclusion is no longer in doubt…. Stupid is as stupid does, as Forrest’s mama used to say…..

The Bible is true this I know,
For the Bible tells me so.

— Jordan Henderson

(Just for fun…. if you don’t already know it, look up the meaning of the Latin phrase, “ipse dixit”….)

“Give a man a fish and he’ll eat for a day. Give a man religion and he’ll starve to death praying for a fish.” — Smart Bee

http://www.sfgate.com/news/politics/article/A-look-at-all-that-Benghazi-stands-for-5469335.php

I finally figured out this whole Benghazi issue…. After reading some of the historical perspective presented in this article, I can see that most of it, if not all, is just an argument between the two major political parties about who can lie the best, and when they’re allowed to do so…. It’s all a mass of pots calling each other black, the whole thing…. The whole mess apparently began because the elephantine idiots in the Republican Party thought they could make some points with the public by making a stink over the lies told by the other side, the donkeyites in the Democratic Party

(I find it interesting to note the two terms for these parties, one hundred years ago, were reversed in terms of party philosophy…. The Republicans were the party of the people, and the Democrats were the rich fat cats; now it’s the opposite, image-wise… Philosophically, of course, neither one resembles anything close to a democratic organization, not anymore; they’re both oligarchies, plain and simple….)

The Republicans, in their self-imposed image of “disloyal opposition” have created an unholy cacophony of accusations and allegations of conspiracy, most of which came straight from their own imaginary fears of things that MIGHT have been true, if reality were not what it is….

The Democrats, having been caught making a paper trail, of their attempts at spin-doctoring all the information about the incident, are naturally upset at the Republicans, who are the reigning champions of lying to the public without a qualm or quiver of guilt. The Dems are upset because the Repubs are accusing THEM of lying, which is actually, to me, rather hilarious….

I mean, talk about chutzpah! The Republican Party, calling someone ELSE a liar! It HAS to be one of the most egregiously arrogant, ignorant stances I’ve ever seen, having personally watched over 50 years of this circus called American politics. In the last national election, in 2012, I believe the average speech by their candidate, Romney, never passed 50% on the fact-checking done by several organizations…

This translates to mean the candidate they chose to represent them to the world at large was lying through his teeth, at least half of every time he opened his mouth to speak…. This is a statistic you may check yourself, but, I’m pretty sure of its accuracy, as I read the reports at the time; they all had him telling an untruth with every other statement he made…. I should add, most of the rest of what I heard was either wrong-headed, selfish, or completely lacking in compassion for anyone other than his own narrow group of supporters…..

Yet, these same liars are upset because the Dems lied to the public about this attack on an embassy, an attack that came as much of a surprise to them as it did to the entire rest of the world…. The attack wasn’t one of those big, planned events…. It was a clusterfuck of incompetence, all around, diplomatically, militarily, and intelligence-wise, on BOTH sides of the issue, and the war; nobody knew it would happen until it did…. Then, of course, the media and the pols get hold of it, and it becomes an issue for them to exploit in the public eye, for their own aggrandizement….

And people wonder why I don’t like ANY of them…..

Well, that’s certainly enough for one day…. even I can only take so much of the news before getting nauseous, so, rather than use up more of my anti-nausea meds, ( medications which double, fortunately, as pain relievers…. Cannabis is wonderfully flexible, sort of a multi-tasker when it comes to what it can do for us….) I’ll leave you with these final pearls, to send us on our way to the next section….

“The simple realization that there are other points of view is the beginning of wisdom. Understanding what they are is a great step. The final test is understanding why they are held.” — Charles M. Campbell

“In a state-run society the government promises you security. But it’s a false promise, predicated on the idea that the opposite of security in risk. Nothing could be further from the truth. The opposite of security is insecurity, and the only way to overcome insecurity is to take risks. The gentle government that promises to hold your hand as you cross the street refuses to let go on the other side.” — Theodore Forstmann

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I’m going with whatever serendipitously throws itself under the wheels of this bus we’re on…. Here is a thought, and a poem, from two classical Chinese poets, to whose translators I offer my complete admiration, and thanks, for such excellent work….

“If you work on your mind with your mind, how can you avoid an immense confusion?” — Seng-Ts’an

Alone, Looking for Blossoms Along the River
The sorrow of riverside blossoms inexplicable,
And nowhere to complain — I’ve gone half crazy.
I look up our southern neighbor. But my friend in wine
Gone ten days drinking. I find only an empty bed.

A thick frenzy of blossoms shrouding the riverside,
I stroll, listing dangerously, in full fear of spring.
Poems, wine — even this profusely driven, I endure.
Arrangements for this old, white-haired man can wait.

A deep river, two or three houses in bamboo quiet,
And such goings on: red blossoms glaring with white!
Among spring’s vociferous glories, I too have my place:
With a lovely wine, bidding life’s affairs bon voyage.

Looking east to Shao, its smoke filled with blossoms,
I admire that stately Po-hua wineshop even more.
To empty golden wine cups, calling such beautiful
Dancing girls to embroidered mats — who could bear it?

East of the river, before Abbot Huang’s grave,
Spring is a frail splendor among gentle breezes.
In this crush of peach blossoms opening ownerless,
Shall I treasure light reds, or treasure them dark?

At Madame Huang’s house, blossoms fill the paths:
Thousands, tens of thousands haul the branches down.
And butterflies linger playfully — an unbroken
Dance floating to songs orioles sing at their ease.

I don’t so love blossoms I want to die. I’m afraid,
Once they are gone, of old age still more impetuous.
And they scatter gladly, by the branchful. Let’s talk
Things over, little buds —open delicately, sparingly.

~~ Tu Fu ~~


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This is going better than I’d hoped, so rather than push my luck, we’re going old school now; I’ll take my chances with the critics…. Enjoy, ffolkes, serendipity has been good to me so far today, so, I have high hopes for this pearl….

“All history shows that every man who has authority is led to abuse it; he does not stop until he comes up against limitations…Things must be so arranged that one authority checks another.” — Montesquieu

“Imagine me going around with a pot belly.  It would mean political ruin.” — Adolf Hitler

“He who cannot draw on three thousand years is living from hand to mouth.” — Goethe

“What a fool cannot learn he laughs at, thinking that by his laughter he shows superiority instead of latent idiocy.” — M. Corelli

“Anyone entrusted with power will abuse it if not also animated with the love of truth and virtue, no matter whether he be a prince, or one of the people.” — Jean de la Fontaine

“Beware lest you lose the substance by grasping at the shadow.” — Aesop

“Fear has its use but cowardice has none.” — Mahatma Gandhi

Hmm….. Sometimes, pearls can be dense, unfathomable, inscrutable…. This one certainly is all of those, even though the actual quotes are not…. I mean, hey, maybe the one by Adolf requires some thought, but, the rest should be pretty clear…. Together, though, it’s a bit of a poser, so, just flow with it; it will come, if and when it does, and not before…. Some pearls are like that….Yeah, they are….

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No matter what anybody says, I’m NOT doing it over!…. Nope, no way! This is actually a good one, so, as John Lennon said, so aptly, “Let it be”….. See ya, ffolkes…..

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

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Wing nuts fried in color-fast bleach…

Ffolkes,
I surrender….. My email wins, or rather the WP email ‘bots win. I got busy yesterday running errands for real life, and couldn’t get to all the email that came in. So, I figured I’d get up early and knock it down this morning, from the 150 that I left in there last night when I crashed. This morning there are 268 in my Inbox….. and by the time I finish this Pearl, that will no doubt grow to an even 300…..

I can’t keep up. There are at least two bloggers that are publishing about 30 times a day each, one with pictures I have no interest in seeing (in addition, he will often post the same article or pictures four or five times in a row, within minutes of each other), and one with re-blogs of just about every blog they visit. Then at least one a day from the over 140 blogs I follow….. I’m dead…. I’ll never get caught up, unless I get ruthless and just delete all the ones I have now, without reading any, to get caught up.

SIGH…. a dilemma, and the only other way to cut back the emails is to Unfollow a bunch of folks. I don’t want to have to do that, for several reasons, one of which is that I’m a softy, and don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings if I can help it…..

I’m sure others have this problem, too; how do you deal with it? Is there a way to turn off the email notifications without unfollowing a blog? I’d ask WP but it seems to take forever to get a response, if they answer at all, so I’m asking y’all first; if you have any suggestions, please feel free to leave them in the comments, and thanks in advance for anything you can tell me….

Housekeeping out of the way, we can now get down to the whole point of this getting up early….. a Pearl….. shall we, then, go Pearling? Let’s do…..
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And the night shall be filled with music,
And the cares that infest the day
Shall fold their tents like the Arabs,
And as silently steal away.
— Henry W. Longfellow (1807-1882) — The Day is done

Apparently, what has stolen away is my Muse…. pearls seem to be hiding from me, inspiration is AWOL, and she’s nowhere to be found. I am almost tempted to fall back into the Assassin’s story from yesterday, just to get things moving. I hate to set a precedent like that, though, they can become habits too quickly. Now if only Longfellow’s poem would come true, and my cares were all to fade away, maybe they would find the Muse and send her home…. it may be the only hope I have….

“You know that feeling when you’re leaning back on a stool and it starts to tip over? Well, that’s how I feel all the time.” — Steven Wright

Well, maybe not all the time, but right now for sure…. the search for a suitable pearl goes on…..

Baby! Baby! oo-ah oo-ah! Baby! Baby! oo-ah oo-ah! — Not Smart Bee, I hope….

Okay, that’s it… all this time and effort, and THIS is what I can find…. more than just pathetic, it is beginning to look like conspiracy….. and the only thing to do in that case is to go back to bed…. I’ll see you in a while….. Sometimes, one has to retreat in order to have any chance to win….. Patience, I’ll be back (Ouch, sorry…. didn’t mean to inflict any Arnie on y’all….)   Hang in there…..
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I met a traveler from an antique land
Who said: Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert.  Near them, on the sand,
Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown,
And wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold command,
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read.
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed;
And on the pedestal these words appear:
“My name is Ozymandias, king of kings:
Look on my works, ye mighty, and despair!”
Nothing beside remains.    Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare,
The lone and level sands stretch far away.
— Percy Bysshe Shelley (1792-1822), “Ozymandias” (1819)

Apparently, going back to bed for a couple of hours helped…. can’t yet say if my Muse has shown up, but within moments of resuming my search, the above showed up. Even without the lesson this poem teaches (of humility before the sands of Time) its sheer beauty is enough to have it grace this page. I am encouraged, and we shall now resume the search for more pearls with a lighter heart…..
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“Say what you will about the sweet miracle of unquestioning faith, I consider a capacity for it terrifying and absolutely vile!” — Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.

Here is a subject upon which I’ll bet I can rant without any warm-up, mostly because I happen to agree with the sentiment completely. I find this quality in a human being to be incomprehensible, as well as scary, and often wonder how such folks live to the age they have achieved, considering their lack of survival skills. Mother Nature is usually not kind to those who would ignore her rules and regulations, (and she doesn’t care why….) choosing instead to live with their heads cocooned in cotton; for most of history such folks as can do this were summarily executed by the Universe at large, a sentence generally carried out in short order when proof of their stupidity arose. “Oh, look! It’s one of those pretty sabertooth kittens…. how cute! Here, kitty, kitty…..”  Or some similar event; you get the picture, I’m sure….

“What a fool cannot learn he laughs at, thinking that by his laughter he shows superiority instead of latent idiocy.” — M. Corelli

However, as civilization has progressed, the penalties for such actions have been downgraded, due to the advances in medicine, and cultural mores that dictate how the weaker and more vulnerable in society are helped to survive (more of that faith-based denial of natural law….). Now, instead of being summarily removed from the gene pool, these walking statues, with heads of marble, are not only kept alive, they are kept alive long enough to breed, thus increasing their numbers, and providing more candidates for the churches and institutions that rely on their numbers for new recruits, recruits who will never question what they are told…..

It is a vicious, self-sustaining cycle, which will last right up to the point of species extinction that we are rapidly approaching….. It won’t bother them much when the world ends because they will deny it right to the end, but it is going to be a scary ride for those of us who have their eyes wide open…. for sure……

“Der christliche Entschluss, die Welt h\”asslich und schlecht zu finden, hat die Walt h\”asslich und schlecht gemacht.”
(The Christian determination to find the word hideous and bad, has made the world hideous and bad.)
— Friedrich Nietzsche
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“Well, here I am in AMERICA..  I LIKE it.  I HATE it. I LIKE it.  I HATE it.  I LIKE it.  I HATE it.  I LIKE it. I HATE it.  I LIKE..  EMOTIONS are SWEEPING over me!!” — Zippy the Pinhead

I’m very close to pulling out what little hair is left on my head…. This is the best I’ve found in the last 30 minutes, and to say the least, I’m very disappointed. Though it is strange enough to tickle my whimsy, it isn’t strong enough to carry me into either a rant or a subtle discussion of hidden meaning; there isn’t any!  I’m going to have to resort to drastic measures, I guess…. I’ve never encountered such a dearth of material. Every oyster I see is pearl-free and now it looks as if the beds themselves are shifting and moving, trying to hide from me. Well, one more try…..
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The mossy marbles rest
On the lips that he has prest
In their bloom;
And the names he loved to hear
Have been carved for many a year
On the tomb.
— Oliver Wendell Holmes (1809-1894) — The Last Leaf

One may always trust poetry to save the day. Or, if not save it, at least support it long enough to get done with the day’s work. These two short tastes of beauty and grace will serve to end this fiasco for today, and carry it into tomorrow, when I trust I shall find reality to have resumed a more amenable shape, bursting with pearls, and more grist for my mill…. I only hope these do not serve as an elegy…..

So perish all, whose breast ne’er learn’d to glow
For others’ good, or melt at others’ woe.
— Alexander Pope (1688-1744) — To the Memory of an Unfortunate Lady, Line 45
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I believe today’s offering has reached a new pinnacle of weird…. I felt the whole time as if I were swimming through cotton candy or spider webs, pulling at me, sticking to my legs and arms, and keeping me from getting anywhere. I will need to think about this today, it has been a severe struggle; I’m already exhausted, it isn’t 9 AM yet, and I have a lot more to do today. (Without even thinking about the 300 emails awaiting my reluctant attention…..

Well, so be it…. pissing and moaning about it isn’t going to get anything done, so I’ll leave it at that…… Here is hoping that your day goes better than mine has begun. I plan to go hence and try to persuade things to move along more in my chosen direction, so, we’ll see…. As long as I can avoid any further attention from Murphy, I should be okay…… 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!