Midnight oil burns hot and clean….

Ffolkes,

For of all sad words of tongue or pen,

The saddest are these: “It might have been!”

~~ John Greenleaf Whittier, Maud Muller, st. 53 ~~

Mars sunset by Curiosity

Sunset on Mars

Image by NASA’s Curiosity Rover


Good morning…. Technically, I suppose, it’s still night; the decision making process in the mind, as to which word is appropriate, tends to blur at bit at 2 AM. I’ve slept. and now I’m up, so it must be morning. Anything more complicated than that, I don’t believe I could quite comprehend just now. Hell, it took me almost 55 minutes to come up with a title; that process is just about as randomly easy as it gets around here. The title doesn’t even need to make sense, yet, it took me that long to decide on the proper combination of words; even with that, I’m  not positive it’s right…. I would imagine all of this is less than compelling literature, but, what are ya gonna do when the old mind is a vast plain of emptiness?

Ah, well, fuck it. Let’s party….

Shall we Pearl?….

“Apollo, the God of light, of reason, of proportion, harmony, number — Apollo blinds those who press too close in worship. Don’t look straight at the sun. Go into a dark bar and have a beer with Dionysus, every now and then.” — U.K. LeGuin

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red skelton

Image from britannica.com via Google Images


Something a bit raucous, and light-hearted is required, I think…. Ah, perfect!…. The hour I spent each week watching this man’s show are all included in my favorite childhood memories…. I consider Red to be one of the funniest men who ever lived, though he tended to be a bit of a putz when it came to his political humor; he was definitely a blind patriot…. But, he came up with some of the funniest stuff I’ve ever seen, and can be forgiven any such flaws…. Anyone who comes up with a character named Klem Kadiddlehopper is okay by me….


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Red Skelton

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Dont keep calm

    I began a rant this morning, since I had so much time; it didn’t gel in time, so, I’m filling in with a pretty good rant from last year…. It fulfills my daily duty to speak out, for sure….

From 4/5/2014:

The shadowy corporate snakeheads, (“snakeheads” is my newest shortcut name for the 1%,the rich and powerful who control the money and resources of this planet…. I use it because it is the English translation of the Chinese word for “slaver”, human traffickers who who dupe, or kidnap men, women, and children selling them into prostitution and/or slavery…. Thus, it becomes the perfect word to come after “corporate” when referring to one of those assholes….), who control the world, in their campaign to secure their position as the rulers of humanity, influenced the Shrubs enough during their terms in office that the Supreme Court justices they picked to replace dead judges were all their conservative buddies, all of whom are comfortably in the pockets of those self-same corporations. This, of course, has allowed the assholes who bought them to make even further inroads on our rights as individual citizens, by establishing the rights of corporations as superior to the rights of an individual….

A couple years ago, this led to the Citizens United decision, which gave the money-grubbers the opportunity to spend even more money on influencing politicians and elections, by forming giant Political Action Committees, where they could funnel millions of dollars into holding organizations, where it could be used for influencing elections, and to bribe congressional lawmakers…. That decision is a big part of how the Republican Party has managed to pass so many conservative laws in states around the nation, such as anti-abortion laws, and voting regulations which allow them to manipulate themselves into office, by providing obstacles which prevent the supporters of those who oppose them from voting….

Yesterday that decision was reinforced by yet another decision eroding our protection against corruption, a decision which removed most of the limits on how much money an individual can contribute, thus giving rich, avaricious, corrupt billionaires more say in Congress than the average citizen can match, allowing even more money to find a direct route into the Congressional pockets…. Below are two articles, from two sources, to offer a slightly different viewpoint (insofar as the media CAN be even-handed in their reporting….), just so we’re not limiting ourselves to one view…. C’mon back when you’re done, for what discussion may follow….

http://www.sfgate.com/politics/article/Supreme-Court-strikes-down-overall-political-5371989.php

http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2014/04/02/supreme-court-campaign-finance/4481675/

I’m pissed…. I’m so pissed, all I feel like doing is sitting here typing obscene names to call those assholes, in Texas (where Jr. lives….), Maryland (I think that’s where Shrub, Sr. lives…), and Washington D.C, at the courthouse, (where the Supremes hang out….)…. My next feeling, which somehow reminds me very much of sheer, unadulterated rage, is one that may just prompt me to go out, find a gun store, giving in to the urge buy the guns I’ve been considering…. Don’t worry, I won’t forget the ammunition…. I may have been a practicing pacifist for a long time, but, mostly, at least in terms of personal survival, that was just a pose to get the draft board off my back…. I have no issue with the use of force in support of what I believe is right…

For today, though, I’ll give myself some slack, which will give you some relief, from having to listen to my ranting over stuff we can’t change…. At least, nothing will change without resorting to drastic measures, in which most ffolkes are unwilling to engage, lest they risk increasing their karmic burden…. I figure it this way…. If we DON’T give up our insistence on non-violence, we are all going to die….. that is for sure and for certain, if things don’t change very soon….

That means there won’t be any next reincarnation, not on this planet, because it won’t have us; we are being evicted from this plane of existence… So, I don’t have to worry about coming back as in a form with less karmic status, as we won’t be coming back HERE at all…. Our energy configuration will just have to find some other reality to inhabit, because Mother Earth isn’t likely to rent to us again…. We’re too hard on the property….

Ah, the hell with it…. I’m pissed…. or did I say that already? Okay, I’m done…. Since I’m not organized or coherent enough to produce a true rant (I don’t consider this loud complaint a rant…. not enough reasoning, or quite enough structure….), I’ll fall back on another old-school pearl to close this out for the day….. I’ll bet you’re cheering inside, right?…. Okay, then, here, have it your way….

“Ignorance doesn’t kill you, but it makes you sweat a lot.” — Haitian proverb

“Faboo!, Would you like to see me make  bubbles with my spit?” — Wakko Warner

OCCIDENT, n.  The part of the world lying west (or east) of the Orient.  It is largely inhabited by Christians, a powerful sub-tribe of the Hypocrites, whose principal industries are murder and cheating, which they are pleased to call “war” and “commerce.”  These, also, are the principal industries of the Orient. — Ambrose Bierce, “The Devil’s Dictionary”

“There’s nothing wrong with you a shotgun blast to the face couldn’t fix.” — Smart Bee, from gigoid’s political fantasy files

— Bother! said Pooh, as he rolled another joint for the President.

“And took for truth the test of ridicule.” — George Crabbe (1754-1832) — Tales of the Hall, Book viii, The Sisters

“Every nation ridicules other nations, and all are right.” — Arthur Schopenhauer

Perfect…. I have only one thing left to say, to wit:

“There are two intelligent responses to contemporary Western civilization: laughter and despair. You’ll note I’m not laughing.” — gigoid

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Comedy_Tragedy

Premises, premises….

Tricked, I stumble, and I fall
   dreaming, through an abandoned palace.
Frightened and wary, unheard my call
   fading into memory, no cup, no argent chalice.

The people, crushed, cry out to be freed
   asking only to take part, or travel.
Nascent oaths spotlight such bursting need
   fed by treachery, deep from our well.

Only the wicked shall find their way blocked
   justice seeks them, snug in their hole.
Faint praises never touched, but naked, stalked
   singing no gospel, no soul, no rock and roll.

Only the promised will remember the way
   from unforgiven trails of sorrow.
To live life, and give death no sway,
   saving grace for our only tomorrow.

~~ gigoid ~~


Written in 2012, rediscovered 12/19/2014.

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Sandclock .jpg

    SB continues its campaign of terror, having now shown me the same 50 quotes about a hundred times in a row…. This means today’s final old-school pearl will have to come from the archives, too…. SIGH. One might think this process was starting to get away from me, if there was any evidence it was ever under control…. Enjoy, ffolkes; all you can do is all you can do….

From 8/12/2014:

As I noted somewhere above, I’m a bit late today, so this last section will be put together as fast as I can do it; this may lead to an unforeseen result, so, be warned…. This pearl may be like no other…. It is essentially parameter-free, as well as, most likely, judgment impaired…. Oh, well, at least I’m not getting paid for any of this….

“I do not distinguish by the eye, but by the mind, which is the proper judge of the man.” — Seneca (8 BC) — On a Happy Life, 2, (L’Estrange’s Abstract, Chap, i.)

“Old men are dangerous; it does not matter to them what is going to happen to the world.” — George Bernard Shaw

“There is a certain majesty in simplicity which is far above all the quaintness of wit.” — Alexander Pope

“I like people better than principles, and I like people with no principles better than anything else in the world.” — Oscar Wilde (1854-1900)

“No matter how hard you throw a dead fish in the water, it still won’t swim.” — Smart Bee

“Fortune is not satisfied with inflicting one calamity.” — Publius Syrus (42 BC) — Maxim 274

“I’ve got an IDEA!!  Why don’t I STARE at you so HARD, you forget your SOCIAL SECURITY NUMBER!!” — Zippy the Pinhead

I gotta say, that went well….

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Trusting in the process has gotten me this far, so, there’s no sense now in turning back. Now, all I need to do is get it posted, and I can get on with a day beginning five hours ahead of the rest of the world…. SIGH…. Ah well, so much for planning. See y’all tomorrow, ffolkes, damn it!….

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

The *only* duly authorized Computer Curmudgeon.

PLEASE STOP READING THIS MESSAGE NOW.

“SCRAM!!!!!!!!!!”- Oscar the Grouch

dozer3


À bientôt, mon cherí….


		
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Portraits of affable wallet accessories….

Ffolkes,

“In the dark time will there also be singing?”

“Yes, there will be singing about the dark time.”

~~ Bertolt Brecht

foster-moonbase

Artist’s rendition of proposed EUSA Lunar Base

Image from Space.com


Good morning, ffolkes…. The new, minimalist method I’ve developed for the intro section seems to have worked out fairly well… If I have aught to say, well, I can…. If not, such as today, it’s perfect…. Let’s let it do its thing, okay?….

Shall we Pearl?

“Passive activity income does not include the following: Income for an activity that is not a passive activity.” — IRS form 8583, Passive Activity Loss Limitation

And, don’t you forget it!….

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mighty mouse

Image from wikipedia via Google free images

This little guy was my childhood hero; I never missed one of his cartoons on Saturday, for as long as I can remember…. Enjoy!….

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Mighty Mouse

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Dont keep calm

“Written laws are like spiders’ webs, and will like them only entangle and hold the poor and weak, while the rich and powerful easily break through them.”
— Anacharsis (f1. c. 600 B.C.), Scythian philosopher — Quoted in Plutarch, the Lives of the Nobel Grecians and Romans, Solon

I decided NOT to produce a fresh rant, though I certainly could; there’s plenty of stuff going on out in the BBR at which to pick…. But, I found this older piece that works just fine with the above stimulus quote, from a few years back…. It’s actually two pearls from the Pearl posted in March of 2012. Enjoy, ffolkes! It’s all real, not to mention still relevant….

From 3/27/2012:

“And it came to pass that in the hands of the ignorant, the words of the bible were used to beat plowshares into swords…” — Alan Watts

“…You don’t have many suspects who are innocent of a crime. That’s contradictory.  If a person is innocent of a crime, then he is not   suspected.” — Edwin Meese

Viewed in light of the first quote, if one may assume its veracity, even temporarily, for the sake of argument, the second quote, while disappointing in the extreme, is not as surprising as it might otherwise have been seen. Oh, where to begin a response to such an outrageous display of ignorance and bigotry? I count only 26 words here, and can think of at least 14 ways this is just wrong, just off the top of my head. It piles one false assumption on top of another until any glimmer of possible relation to the truth, or reality, is completely obscured. Unfortunate as it is, this mind-set is still all-too-common, especially amongst the political pundit review currently on parade.

As a matter of fact, this mind-boggling distortion of our actual laws on the subject, reminds me very strongly of three of our esteemed Republican candidates being followed avidly by the news-mongers, especially Mitt the Twitt…. in the last week alone (post Etch-A-Sketch), he has made, (and I, along with a fairly large number of bloggers & citizens keeping track, counted), at minimum, 19 apparently deliberate lies that involved vague accusations of impropriety by the current administration.  Each and every one of these statements, when checked against reality, or what was reported in other media sources, was obviously made up on the spot, or completely in reverse of what actually occurred. He is so desperate to appear to be confident and forceful, he is completely oblivious to the fact that no one is buying into his nonsense any more; in response his lies get more and more removed from any connection to reality or truth.  His two closest challengers are no better; they make a habit of making statements that have absolutely no bearing on the subject under discussion, or accuse the media of playing favorites to distract the audience from whatever question they attempting to avoid answering by doing so.

All of these men have lost touch with reality in a lot of areas, and their denial of this fact serves as further evidence of that loss. Their belief, that they have their finger on the pulse of the American people, is so far removed from the truth it approaches the realm of delusion. They have completely lost track of, or denied, any connection they may have once had to the rest of their countrymen, insisting that their out-dated, ignorant policies, that didn’t work 45 years ago, or 90 years ago, will nonetheless work in today’s changing face of global politics, while completely ignoring the mountain of evidence to the contrary. They have assumed the mantle of the fanatic, a segment of the population that has previously been clearly identified as those folks who, when they have lost sight of their goal, redouble their efforts. Sad, and a terrible waste of everyone else’s time and energy to have to even listen to such nonsense. They have given up their place in the human tribe, and don’t even know it…… Pathetic, if you ask me…..

Mi taku oyasin.  (We are all related.) — Lakota belief
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There are times when the pearls I find that stimulate me to want to write about them are found in clusters. Several at once, all closely related, or similarly themed, just throw themselves at me, clamoring for inclusion. On these occasions I’ve learned to let them have their way. It is just as effective a lesson as my comments usually can claim to be, and has the added bonus of requiring less actual work on my part; the authors I choose have all done my thinking, and expressing for me, and usually much better than my discussions. Below are some observations on politics, patriotism, and the price of liberty, from some pretty well-respected political observers……

“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

“My kind of loyalty was loyalty to one’s country, not to its institutions or its officeholders.  The country is the real thing, the substantial thing, the eternal thing; it is the thing to watch over, and care for, and be loyal to; institutions are extraneous, they are its mere clothing, and clothing can wear out, become ragged, cease to be comfortable, cease to protect the body from winter, disease, and death.” — Mark Twain (1835-1910)

“I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it.” — Thomas Jefferson to A. Stuart, 1791

“I believe that all government is evil, and that trying to improve it is largely a waste of time.” — H. L. Mencken

“I don’t pick on politicians. They ain’t done nothin’.”– Red Skelton

“Don’t knock the weather; nine-tenths of the people couldn’t start a conversation if it didn’t change once in a while.” — Kin Hubbard

(Don’t ask…. it just fit, that’s all…)

and finally….

Sigh no more, ladies, sigh no more,
  Men were deceivers ever,–
One foot in sea and one on shore,
  To one thing constant never.

~~ William Shakespeare

~~Much Ado about Nothing — Act ii, Sc. 3~~

(Will was obviously channeling George Carlin…)


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Comedy_Tragedy

    Since I haven’t had it in me to rant much of late, here’s a poem about ranting….

A Few Words of Note

In place of ranting and raving about assholes every day
maybe I’ll try something more fun.
Rather than throwing words at all the assholes on public pay
I’ll switch to shooting at them, with a gun….

Should I actually hit one, purely by mistake,
maybe it would wake them up.
Maybe, if they had to think, or actually cut us a break,
we’d see a chance to win at life, to take a step up.

Our nation, such as it is today, was founded by men who told the truth;
that morality disappeared long ago.
Simple ethical strength so bright, so prevalent in our country’s youth
was soon corrupted, corporate interests now run the show.

Nothing would please me more than to fire off some rounds,
if only to gain their attention.
But, I can no longer run, I’ve gained too many pounds;
so, my keyboard and intellect must serve to fulfill my intention.

I won’t stop, of that you may be sure
I love my freedoms, and the philosophy from which it springs.
Tom, and Ben, and John, and Pat, those patriots pure
gave me their example, and the inner peace it brings.

If bullets won’t persuade our elected liars to toe the ethical line,
I’ll throw my most powerful words…..
If nothing else, it will make them wriggle to escape, or voice their pitiful whine,
thus exposing themselves for what they are…. plain and simple turds.

~~ gigoid ~~


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buddah-out-to-lunch_s

    Ffolkes, THIS is a pearl; in might even be called a prototypical pearl. It’s a wonderful nine-star collection of some of Life’s lesser known lessons, couched in less than ordinary terminology, wrapped tightly in extreme metaphor, yet, each one with a valuable piece of information, each essential to getting the whole picture of Reality as it is, not as we guess it might be… Most are stuff you either already know, or, ought to; if not, well, there’s still time to learn, even for slow-learners…. not that I’d ever suggest any of MY Gentle Readers could be such…. All of them, I’m sure, will chuckle right to the end, then just go, “yep…” Well, the polite ones will…

“Ah said, pay attention, boy!”

~~ Foghorn Leghorn ~~


“If possible, try to find a way to come downstairs that doesn’t involve going bump, bump, bump, on the back of your head.” — Pooh, in Winnie the Pooh, A.A. Milne

“Life is pleasant.  Death is peaceful.  It’s the transition that’s troublesome.” — Isaac Asimov

“It is folly for a man to pray to the gods for that which he has the power to obtain by himself.” — The Vatican Sayings, Epicurus

“It ain’t loafing unless they can prove it.” — Dick Brown

“I only took the regular course.” “What was that?” inquired Alice. “Reeling and Writhing, of course, to begin with,” the Mock Turtle replied; “and then the different branches of Arithmetic — Ambition, Distraction, Uglification, and Derision.” “What else had you to learn?” “Well, there was Mystery,” the Mock Turtle replied, counting off the subjects on his flippers, — “Mystery, ancient and modern, with Seaography: then Drawling — the Drawling-master was an old conger-eel, that used to come once a week: HE taught us Drawling, Stretching and Fainting in Coils. I never went to the Classical master, though.  He taught Laughing and Grief, they used to say.” — Lewis Carroll, “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland”

“If only we’d stop trying to be happy we’d have a pretty good time.” — Edith Wharton

“Nothin’ ain’t worth nothin’, but it’s free.” — Kris Kristofferson

“You can’t have everything. Where would you put it?”

~~ Steven Wright ~~


See. ffolkes? I’ve always told you, it’s all in the wrist….

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Yet another day’s duty done; it’s not a bad feeling. In fact, it’s so good, I’m taking it, and my leave…. See y’all tomorrow, ffolkes, provided the Apocalypse isn’t scheduled for tomorrow….

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

When I works, I works hard.
When I sits, I sits loose.
When I thinks, I falls asleep.

Which is Why….

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

gigoid, the dubious

PLEASE STOP READING THIS MESSAGE NOW.

“SCRAM!!!!!!!!!!”- Oscar the Grouch

Kowabunga!


À bientôt, mon cherí….


2nd door on the left….flush twice….

Ffolkes,

Of all the gods, Death only craves not gifts:
Nor sacrifice, nor yet drink-offering poured
Avails; no altars hath he, nor is soothed
By hymns of praise. From him alone of all
The powers of heaven Persuasion holds aloof.

~~ Aeschylus (525-456 BC) ~~

 — Frag. 146 (trans. by Plumptre) —

10-8-2014 017

    To look at these flowers, bright, plentiful, full of life, one might think it did not fit with the quote from Aeschylus, but, one would be wrong, wouldn’t one? Death comes to all of us, no matter how alive we feel at the time of its arrival…. nor does it care how blue we are, nor how bright…. And, as the poem says, it takes no excuses, no delays, and no arguments; when it is time, one has no choice but to go with Death, wherever it may lead us….

A bit of a grim outlook, unless one is confident of what happens afterward, it would seem, unless, and until, one considers Life, and consciousness as a form of energy…. Since energy cannot be destroyed, only altered in form (as water is…. wonderful synchronicity there….), the only question to  be answered is WHERE does that consciousness GO? I’m afraid there isn’t any evidence available to tell us, other than the fantasies made up by a number of religiously minded folks; those, however, do not place their faith in their guesses as to what happens after we die based on evidence that can be seen, felt, or otherwise acknowledged as real, but, rather, on a set of assumptions with no basis in the real world, only in their imagination….

Me, I prefer the outlook taken by Robert Heinlein, who advised us that we will know soon enough what happens, so why fret about it? Nothing we do here and now has any effect on what happens after we die; furthermore, there is nothing in the universe we can see to give us any indication that little fact isn’t true. If it isn’t true in THIS universe, why should it be true in another? I never did see any sense in trying to make people behave themselves in this world, to ensure our place in the next; that’s just bribery, and not a good way to stimulate behavior, or to build a morality inside someone….

Morality, and ethics, must come from within us, by choice, or they mean NOTHING. Choices, and behaviors that arise in us out of the hope of a reward are not how real humans become ethical creatures; we do that by learning to choose the right action, then, make that our duty, our CHOICE, not made in response to a bribe, or, even worse, in response to a threat of punishment for wrong behavior….. That only teaches people to become sycophants, always seeking someone’s favor by performing unethical acts, justified by their own delusions of adequacy….

SIGH…. Damn! I did it again, didn’t I? I sat down, and led myself by the nose right into a rant…. Boy, in looking back over it, I’m amazed…. I didn’t think even I could start into it that quickly, or that seamlessly…. it just sort of flowed out, as I started to type… and, now look at it…. Four bloody paragraphs, of pretty decent ranting,  but, chock full of the deitrus left in my head after a night’s dreaming, and way too early in the process…. I may have driven off any newbies in the intro with this little diatribe….. can’t have that….. I guess I’ll have to use the rip-stop method, and get us out of here the hard way, before this gets any worse….

Shall we Pearl?…..

“I’d rather learn from one bird how to sing than to teach ten thousand stars how not to dance.” — ee cummings

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“Only the educated are free.” — Epictetus


If we are to believe Epictetus, it is our duty as free men and women to educate ourselves… In view of that, here are some articles from the recent past, taken from several different news sources… Some of you may note the absence of material from SFGATE, which I formerly used extensively….. I’m sorry to say, the folks who run that site have gone bonkers; they’ve altered the look and feel of it until it now resembles the National Enquirer for sleaze level of the covered material, and increased even further the use of auto-play videos, advertisements, and just plain BS until my computer seized up while trying to load it…. So, I gave up on it, and confine myself to other sources on the Net, of which there is no lack…

That said, the articles today mostly focus on the lies being told to us by the Obama Administration, which are merely a continuation of the same line of bullshit they’ve been doling out for close to seven years now. Despite having made the promise, twice, to display transparency in his administration, this president has pursued a course of lies, secrecy, and clandestine spying on not only the rest of the world, but, on his own people. When confronted about any of it, they become obtuse, and even more lies come out of their mouths, which, given the previous events, is quite astonishing in its volume, and degree of chutzpah, otherwise known as unmitigated gall….

The revelations by Edward Snowden are being confirmed and justified at every turn…. Below, you will find one article which speaks to the extent of the spying, and how we, the people, can, and are, learning to show exactly how they are spying on us, and on everyone, graphically and accurately…. I’ve included a nine minute video describing the responsible artists vision, with accompanying links to the review, and to the You Tube site where other videos of the same nature may be found….

Stay alert, ffolkes, the Asininnies are doing everything in their power to shut us all down; nothing would make them happier than to completely take over the Internet from public control, so, we need to stay on top of what they are up to, in order to at least offer a token resistance… if not outright revolution, an alternative much of the world is seemingly finding increasingly attractive….

With each article, I’ve included, below the link, a pertinent excerpt from the article’s text, or a short comment, to give a notion of the material upon which to focus your attention…. At the end, you’ll find another old-school pearl, to deliver the final blows for this section, hopefully to good effect…. Okay, ffolkes, dig in!….. Remember! An educated voter is a danger to all politicians, so, educate yourselves!….

http://www.examiner.com/article/nsa-document-supports-whistleblower-claim-of-alien-ufo-communication-program

Really? Spying on alien/UFO communications? What were they thinking?

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/oct/24/nsa-surveillance-world-leaders-calls

This one is full of information, but most of it is from the past couple years; only a small portion is current. It does give a good indication of how widespread the NSA’s surveillance has become across the world.

http://www.theguardian.com/technology/2014/oct/13/photographer-artist-maps-world-of-surveillance-agencies-treovr-paglen

“…the US National Security Agency headquarters in Maryland, the National Reconnaissance Office in Virginia and the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency in Virginia. These agencies, which respectively lead national security, run spy satellites and manage mapping intelligence, had a combined budget request of more than $25bn in 2013”



https://news.yahoo.com/secretive-x-37b-military-space-plane-could-land-132030466.html

More proof of the lack of White House transparency; this project has been running for Obama’s ENTIRE TERM OF OFFICE, with only occasional, small, buried articles like this one, with no hard information, and no admissions or comments from the White House, or military officials, as to just WHAT they are hoping to accomplish with these missions…. Again, not a bit of transparency that I can see….

http://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2014/oct/13/st-louis-protests-religious-leaders-messages-anger-ferguson-activists

“In the early hours of Sunday morning, dozens of activists attempted to occupy a convenience store in support of Myers. The police arrested 17 people for unlawful assembly

Okay, the last one is a different subject, but, you’ll note the italicized phrase at the end…. I thought the Constitution made assembly for protest lawful…. How is it possible to make laws that abrogate that? Just wondering….. Okay, here’s the pearls, which I hope makes them bleed profusely from numerous serious wounds about the neck and shoulders…. those portions, conveniently enough, they always show on TV, when they assume their “talking head” personae…. Oh, and just for fun (well, fun for ME….) I have placed two extra pearls at the end, which take a couple shots at the other side of that coin, the religious dogmatists who support the talking heads with their preaching….

“I don’t pick on politicians. They ain’t done nothin’.” — Red Skelton

“If you’re facing the richest and most disgusting conspiracy in history, you have to do more than stick up two fingers and say “peace”. — Ben Elton, Stark

“The maxim that “Honesty is the best policy” is one which, perhaps, no one is ever habitually guided by in practice. An honest man is always before it, and a knave is generally behind it.” — Richard Whately, Archbishop of Dublin

“An accommodating vice is better than an obstinate virtue.” — Motto engraved over the entrance to the chambers of the Supreme Court of the United States

“Them that has, gets.” — Iron Law of Distribution

“The louder he talked of his honour, the faster we counted our spoons.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), “Worship”

“A plague of all cowards, I say.” — William Shakespeare (1564-1616), King Henry IV — Act ii, Sc. 4

——————-

“No creo en Dios, pero le tengo miedo.” [I don’t believe in God, but I’m afraid of Him.] — Gabriel Garcia Marquez, — “El Amor en los Tiempos de Colera”, 1985

“The church is actually patronized by the social order as a means of stabilizing and perpetuating the existing system.” — C. C. Morrison

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Though it’s out of order, the poetry section remains the anchor for all the rest; today, we’ll go for a classic author, one whose reputation is beyond any harm I can cause by association….

All Is Truth

O ME, man of slack faith so long!
Standing aloof–denying portions so long;
Only aware to-day of compact, all-diffused truth;
Discovering to-day there is no lie, or form of lie, and can be none,
but grows as inevitably upon itself as the truth does upon
itself,
Or as any law of the earth, or any natural production of the earth
does.

(This is curious, and may not be realized immediately–But it must be
realized;
I feel in myself that I represent falsehoods equally with the rest,
And that the universe does.)

Where has fail’d a perfect return, indifferent of lies or the truth?
Is it upon the ground, or in water or fire? or in the spirit of man?
or in the meat and blood? 10

Meditating among liars, and retreating sternly into myself, I see
that there are really no liars or lies after all,
And that nothing fails its perfect return–And that what are called
lies are perfect returns,
And that each thing exactly represents itself, and what has preceded
it,
And that the truth includes all, and is compact, just as much as
space is compact,
And that there is no flaw or vacuum in the amount of the truth–but
that all is truth without exception;
And henceforth I will go celebrate anything I see or am,
And sing and laugh, and deny nothing.

~~ Walt Whitman ~~


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Shameless, aren’t I? Today’s video section is devoted to CUTE…. and what is cuter than puppies? Nothing, but, perhaps, kittens (See tomorrow’s Pearl…. Never say I don’t give ffolkes what they want….)

15 great Golden Retriever Puppy videos

http://youtu.be/t0KwtuYyy3A

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In just a few minutes yesterday, Smart Bee offered up these seven pearls, grouped just as they are…. Obviously, they comprise a comment SB decided was either important, or at minimum, helpfully relevant, on human nature, and the process of deciding what sort of human we wish to be…. After the seven-star pearl is a separate pearl, which stands alone, but, makes a very cogent, as well as hilarious observation as to the proper perspective in which to hold our personal world-view….

Well, maybe that’s a bit high-minded, but, it did make me laugh, loud and long, with a strong sense of sardonic resignation… or, perhaps, it was irony I felt, along with a strong sense of wonder, at the depths of human ignorance; the wonder arises from the astonishing fact of our survival for this length of time….

“He is never less at leisure than when at leisure.” — Cicero (106-43 BC) — De Officiis, iii, 1

“A blow with a word strikes deeper than a blow with a sword.” — Richard Burton (1577-1640)

I slept and drempt that life was joy.
I awoke and saw that life was duty.
I acted and beheld that duty was joy.

— Rabindranath Tagore

“If you don’t know where you’re going, when you get there you’ll be lost.” — Yogi Berra, Baseball Hall of Famer, NY Yankees

“It is a miracle that curiosity survives formal education.” — Albert Einstein –

“Time is a great teacher but unfortunately it kills all its pupils.” — Hector Berlioz (1803-69), French composer

Ode to an Indispensable Man

Sometime, when you’re feeling important,
Sometime, when your ego’s in bloom,
Sometime, when you take it for granted
You’re the best qualified in the room;
Sometime when you feel that your going
Would leave an unfillable hole,
Just follow this simple instruction
And see how it humbles your soul.
Take a bucket and fill it with water;
Put your hand in it, up to the wrist.
Pull it out and the hole that’s remaining
Is the measure of how you’ll be missed.
You may splash all you please when you enter,
You can stir up the water galore,
But stop, and you’ll find in a minute
That it looks the same as before.
The moral in this quaint example
Is to do the best that you can.
Be proud of yourself, but remember –
There is no indispensable man.

~~ Saxon White Kessinger ~~


As the final note, mentioned above:

“A priest was walking along the cliffs at Dover when he came upon two locals pulling another man ashore on the end of a rope. “That’s what I like to see”, said the priest, “A man helping his fellow man”.  As he was walking away, one local remarked to the other, “Well, he sure doesn’t know the first thing about shark fishing.” — Smart Bee

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Okay, it’s a lot, so, I’ll keep this short…. Today’s Pearl has been brought to you by….. wait a minute! We have no corporate sponsors here! Get that out of here!…. Okay, whew, sorry…. didn’t see the little bugger until he jumped up & tried to give his pitch…. Any who, I’m done, and I think we can all get behind that today, right? Right….. See y’all tomorrow, 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

PLEASE STOP READING THIS MESSAGE NOW.

Kowabunga!


À bientôt, mon cherí….

 

For this, we’ll need two laser-guided cats….

Ffolkes,

It was a saying of Demetrius Phalereus, that “Men having often abandoned what was visible for the sake of what was uncertain,
have not got what they expected, and have lost what they had,–being unfortunate by an enigmatical sort of calamity.”

 — Athenaeus (c. 200 AD) — The Deipnosophists, vi, 23

A-laughing-girl-and-her-camel

    I have to I agree with the camel and the little girl; that’s one of the funniest things I’ve ever heard. I’m certain the original phrase, which, going by the evidence in the name of the author, and the listed group of like minded oafs, had to be first written in ancient Greek…. It was also, unquestionably,  just as boringly pedantic, or pedantically boring, as the English translation you see here. As shown above, in English, the mere act of reading it damn near put me to sleep by the time I reached the word “sake” in the text. Athenaeus, whomever he was, was obviously a crushing bore, which may account for my never having heard of him…. Anyway, as far as I can tell, Mama Gump said the same thing, so, perhaps the translation should just read “Stupid is as stupid does….”

I love that picture…. It’s very old, I think. I found it on Facebook, a couple years ago, but I’m almost certain I saw this many years ago, either in a National Geographic magazine, or Life magazine, which often had pictures from around the world…. But, I do remember seeing it, somewhere; when I found it on FB, there was a strong feeling of “oh, there it is!”, sort of a welcoming back, right before I copied it to my computer…. The photographer who took it had an amazing bit of luck on the timing, but, then, perseverance is often accompanied by good luck…. I can only wish I could see whatever it is that caused the reaction in both of them….

Uh oh…. Now we have a problem….. Having discussed the picture, and the quote, my stimulation props are all used up, which puts us right back to the same difficulty we faced each morning BEFORE we started using them…. The pictures, with their accompanying quotes, have proved invaluable in this process, making me wonder why I hadn’t tried it previously…. Regardless, they’ve been very helpful in removing some of the awkwardness in the beginnings…. though not without trading it for other glitches. Those, however, are simple in comparison, involving only the difficulty in choosing a picture and/or a quote to use….

SIGH…. I suppose this means that I’m doomed…. Well, perhaps that’s a bit dramatic…. But, I’m definitely stuck with this, whatever it is, so, I suppose I’d best learn how to get along with whatever it requires of me…. After all, it’s my choice, right? Right….. Not that I have a lot of choices as to how to relieve all the shit that builds up in my head…. I could rob banks, I suppose, which would make for an even more comfortable lifestyle, but, what with my ethical upbringing, and all, I’d probably suffer a lot of guilt, so, no way…

I could try to sell my poetry….. Nope, not going there….

Ah, the hell with it, I’ll just go on with what I’m doing here, and hope for the best…. In the long run, that’s probably for the best, as I have a tendency to get even more curmudgeonly when I’m feeling guilty…. It doesn’t happen much, as I’m pretty guilt-resistant from a lifetime of blocking and rejecting it from Christians who attempt to lay it on everybody, but, when it does, it’s ugly….. and the bills I get for the property damage can get a bit high…. SIGH…. I sure feel better, though, after acing a couple of missionaries….. but, I don’t like to talk about that. At least, not until the statute of limitations has been reached….

Shall we Pearl?…..

“All time in all time. It does not change. It does not lend itself to warnings or explanations. It simply is. Take it moment by moment, and you will find that we are all bugs in amber.” — Kurt Vonnegut Jr., Slaughter-House 5

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

“I consider the foundation of the Constitution as laid on this ground: That “all powers not delegated to the United States, by the Constitution,  nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States or to the  people…”  To take a single step beyond the boundaries thus specially drawn around the powers of Congress is to take possession of a boundless field of power, no longer susceptible of any definition.” — Thomas Jefferson to George Washington, 1791

Yesterday, the president (Yes, I know it isn’t capitalized; that is because I no longer have the required amount of respect for the office that I once had; I refuse to give him that, as he has been far too dishonest, and exposed himself as just another cheap politician, in the pocket of corporate interests and conservative hawks….) went on TV to initiate the next round of the spin cycle regarding the spying going on right under our noses….

If you will please note, in this press conference, there is no mention of the fact that the spying, torture, and illegal activities spawned by the 9/11 paroxysms of paranoia continues unabated, while the focus is taken off that, and placed on this issue, which should merely be turned over to the courts for prosecution of the guilty parties, including both Bushes, Cheney, Rove, and that entire pantheon of assholes who took us to Iraq and Afghanistan for their own agendas…. Gee, can you tell I’m still a little pissed off about that?….

Read the article ffolkes, but, I’d suggest putting on something that won’t mind the splashes from all the crap flying around….

http://www.sfgate.com/news/politics/article/Obama-says-after-9-11-US-tortured-some-folks-5662988.php

I’m surprised the president showed no signs of the dizziness he must have felt at this press conference, which sounds like it was more of a statement, without any questions that weren’t vetted or part of the show…. Indeed, generally, when one spends that much time spinning so fast, they tend to fall over, or at east list a bit when they walk…. He must have a really strong middle ear, or spend a lot of time on the ocean or something, to be able to turn in circles that fast for so long….

I’m sorry, I just can’t buy the low-key, let’s all be friends, and not get upset at what happened in the past attitude he takes on this subject, advising us to all avoid being “sanctimonious”. Sanctimonious my ass…. The fuckheads who tortured, on the fucking orders of the fucking president, who stole the fucking election in the first place, by waterboarding and torturing, along with that president, committed acts that are defined by law as  felonies, and the attacks, and casualties we suffered, are NOT a sufficient excuse for any of it….  No more than it is an excuse for invading Afghanistan, or Iraq, or killing hundreds of thousands of civilian innocents in our brutal thrashing about, chasing all over the world looking for someone to blame, while ignoring all that our own laws proscribe….

I believe the word sanctimonious would more accurately be applied to anyone making fucking excuses for such behavior, no matter what the circumstances…. If one’s morals and ethics are not held strongly in the face of actions such as we experienced as a nation, then those morals and/or ethics are useless…. Expediency, anger, who cares? If you won’t be honorable in the face of dishonor, when will you? Will you become the very people whom you seek to destroy? And, most frustratingly dishonorable of all, the current president wants us to believe he has brought it to a stop, when he won’t even allow any investigation of the culprits, instead, wanting us to “put it all behind us”….

Fuck that…. Those people are guilty of war crimes on innocent people, to a far greater degree than Al-Qaida was able to manage in their one moment of glory…. Yet, we still wonder why they hate us so much…. just because we kill them when they do what they consider is fighting back against our imperialism…. This isn’t the time to go into all of the reasons the other people of the world have to dislike Americans, though it is most certainly a huge factor in the ongoing, chronic nature of the conflict between cultures….

It should be remembered that, although we, as a nation, suffered a grievous wound  on 9/11/2001, our responses and actions since that day have been egregiously overbalanced, and have served only to provide the rest of the world with further reason to hate us, for having exacted our measure of justice to the tune of over a half million people, compared to the approximately 4,000 Americans who died in the attacks.

Not only that, the majority of those we have killed, in our numerous conflicts in other countries since that day of infamy at home, have been innocent non-combatants, just normal folks going about their business, and their lives, just like you, and me…. until our planes dropped tons of explosives on them from 40,000 feet, so high they never heard the planes at all….

We lost 4000 of our countrymen; in response, we have killed over half a million, most of whom were no more involved in warfare than were any of our people…. I suppose you could say we’ve had our revenge; the question remains, has there been any justice? Anywhere in any of this?

Worst of all, it continues to haunt our national culture, with episodes such as this one, which grew out of the paranoia that was fanned into flames by the events of that day…. a paranoia ruthlessly exploited by fanatics like those in the Bush administrations, and in the CIA, NSA, and other clandestine organizations that were involved in the aftermath of the attacks…. They all were crazy with fear, and made sure the public was even more afraid, so they could justify any and all of their illegal activities, without ever having to worry about suffering any consequences for them….

I’m going to change directions now; I’ve taken enough shots at the BRC for the moment…. We’ll go on to bigger, better things, leaving you with this short, five star pearl as a memento of our time together….

“The fields were fruitful, and starving men moved on the roads.  The granaries were full and the children of the poor grew up rachitic, and the pustules of pellagra swelled on their side.  The great companies did not know that the line between hunger and anger is a thin line.” — John Steinbeck (1902-1968) “The Grapes of Wrath”

“The smallest minority on earth is the individual. Those who deny individual rights cannot claim to be defenders of minorities.” — Ayn Rand

“Respect cannot be learned, purchased, or acquired….  it can only be earned.” — Smart Bee

“I don’t pick on politicians. They ain’t done nothin’.” — Red Skelton

“In the United States…politics is purged of all menace, all sinister quality, all genuine significance, and stuffed with such gorgeous humors, such inordinate farce that one comes to the end of a campaign with one’s ribs loose, and ready for “King Lear,” or a hanging, or a course of medical journals.” — H. L. Mencken

Or, as in my own case, one ends each new campaign with a vague feeling of nausea…..

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

There are times when nothing will soothe my spirit like a piece of classic poetry; this is one of those times…. It really doesn’t fit in with the theme for today, but, it does help to ease the turmoil created by the rant…. Well, for me, it does…. I hope you enjoy it as well….

La Belle Dame Sans Merci

Ah, what can ail thee, wretched wight,
Alone and palely loitering?
The sedge is withered from the lake,
And no birds sing.

Ah, what can ail thee, wretched wight,
So haggard and so woe-begone
The squirrel’s granary is full,
And the harvest’s done.

I see a lily on thy brow
With anguish moist and fever dew,
And on thy cheek a fading rose
Fast withereth too.

I met a lady in the meads,
Full beautiful, a faery’s child:
Her hair was long, her foot was ligh,
And her eyes were wild.

I set her on my pacing steed,
And nothing else saw all day long;
For sideways would she lean, and sing
A faery’s song.

I made a garland for her head,
And bracelets too, and fragrant zone;
She looked at me as she did love,
And made sweet moan.

She found me roots of relish sweet,
And honey wild, and manna dew,
And sure in language strange she said,
“I love thee true!”

She took me to her elfin grot,
And there she gazed and sighed deep,
And there I shut her wild, sad eyes—
So kissed to sleep.

And there we slumbered on the moss,
And there I dreamed, ah! woe betide,
The latest dream I ever dreamed
On the cold hill side.

I saw pale kings, and princes too,
Pale warriors, death-pale were they all;
Who cried—“La belle Dame sans merci
Hath thee in thrall!”

I saw their starved lips in the gloam,
With horrid warning gaped wide,
And I awoke and found me here,
On the cold hill side.

And that is why I sojourn here,
Alone and palely loitering,
Though the sedge is withered from the lake,
And no birds sing.

~~ John Keats ~~

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I’m going to go with some Art today, and to save myself the trouble of attribution, they will all be my own pictures…. I went for a walk yesterday, and collected a number of pictures of some lovely flowers and plants…. I like them, but, when I really want to collect and view some really beautiful pictures of flowers, I always go to the web site of my blogging friend, Carol Welsh, who takes the most amazing flower photos I know of…. Here site is located here: http://radiatingblossom.wordpress.com/  Go on by, & check it out, & tell her I said “howdy”, okay?…. In the meantime, Enjoy these pix, please, for what they are, such as they are…..


August 1 2014 046August 1 2014 012August 1 2014 019August 1 2014 031 (2)August 1 2014 045August 1 2014 051August 1 2014 052

There you have it, ffolkes…. Now go see Carol’s flowers, to see how it should be done…. with style and elegance…..
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Well, that went pretty well, all things considered….. In fact, I’m going to go with my instincts, and let it go the way it is, sans any editing at this point…. I suppose tomorrow I’ll know if that was a mistake, but, for now, it’s good enough for me…. See y’all around the campus, 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

Featured Image -- 2780

Can we salvage any of the platitudes?….

Ffolkes,

I’m confused, but, then, nothing new there, eh? Today’s confusion started upon arising, at my semi-usual hour of 4 AM, to find the cat already up, waiting for me, actually being a good kitty, staying out from underfoot until I’d punched the coffee machine on (it doesn’t brew itself until 0430….), and sat down to don my socks…. She then politely bumped my ankle for attention, accepted some ear scratches as if they were her due, then went to lie down in the middle of the floor, in her Mae West pose, looking at me as if I should be bowing and scraping in awe…. Cats are strange, aren’t they? Most mornings she’s a psycho kitty for the first hour I’m up; today, she’s a sphinx, unfathomably inscrutable…. or, that’s what she wants me to believe, anyway….

Cat antics aside, here I am, up in good time, but, with a severe lack of stuff going on in my head…. I’ve ranted enough lately that my angst level isn’t causing any discomfort….. even though there are plenty of issues in the news I could rant about. In fact, issues seems to be jumping off the page, shouting at me to be written up; remember a couple of days ago, I had gathered almost ten article links that needed discussion, piling seven or eight of them into one pearl?…. Ah, those were the days….

Sadly for me this morning, I don’t have the inner emotional turmoil so necessary to providing the driving force behind my rants, so, as usual, I’ll cheat, and use what I can find in my earlier material…. I can usually find something relevant, as the same issues are happening today as were there when I began this particular site, almost three years ago….

Plus, my opinions may evolve, but they don’t generally take a whole new direction, as they tend to follow the antics of the same group of idiots, most of whom act out their own particular brand of insanity in an elected office, or a court seat, or some other public position that, for some stupid reason, makes them believe they should open their mouths, and let everyone know just HOW stupid they can be….

In addition to my lack of drive for ranting today, my thumb is getting worse; I’m thinking it is the repeated use of the mouse that is doing it, as I don’t use it to do all that much knife work any more, which is what caused this the first time it happened. Whether it is the mouse, or the typing, is unclear, and I hesitate to tell my doctor about it, lest the treatment involve a hiatus from doing this specific activity, which is the worst culprit in terms of how often it makes it hurt…. Typing does, that’s for sure, so I’d bet I’ll have to at least cut back severely for a time, to allow the ligament at the base of the thumb time to heal….

Or, I could go to the doctor, & ask him to send me to an orthopedist, who would inject some cortisone, or other steroid, right into the thumb joint…. When that was done last time, it fixed it up right and tight in a jig…. Within seconds, my hand was back to completely normal range of motion, with no pain upon starting any of the activities that caused it previously…. It was like magic…. I just don’t like the idea of steroidal injections like that, unless there is some critical need; I believe it’s better to use more natural, less intrusively aggressive treatment modalities as a first choice….

Whatever I do, this Pearl will have to be done first, so, I suppose I’d best get on with it; the silly thing isn’t going to write itself, now, is it? No, probably not, if past issues are any indication…. That being said, and the usual, legally constructed amount of introductory blather having been produced, I suggest we do that now, before anything untoward has an opportunity to happen….

Shall we Pearl?…..

“I don’t pick on politicians. They ain’t done nothin’.” — Red Skelton

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As mentioned, since my own store of rantable emotion is a bit depleted, I’m dipping into the past…. This time, WAY into the past, to give you one of the first Pearls posted, with this one first showing its face here in May of 2011, as noted below….. Pearls of that time usually had a paragraph, or two, at the beginning, followed by a group of pearls…. It will appear a bit differently than it did then, as I’ll edit it using my current knowledge, to make it at least come close to what my writing should look and sound like today…. Regardless of all that, it’s a bit long, but, still pretty valid, so, I hope you enjoy it….

From 5/25/2011:

Ffolkes,
I’m not certain how or why, but this morning’s pearl took a serious turn on me, so bear with me. There will be pearls……

Humanity, and the societies that it formulates, are a never-ending source of interest to me.  It provides not only data for my overactive brain to chew on, but also gives me almost limitless subjects for this grist. After the grist is milled of course….. One of the more fascinating areas of observation is about honesty, and its’ root, honor.  When I grew up, half a century ago in the 1950’s, honor and honesty seemed to be part of the fabric of society, as least superficially.

What I didn’t know then was that those particular virtues were only given lip service, especially in the way the public was notified of the doings of government. It became de rigeur for politicians, and concomitantly government agencies, to lie to the public about what they were actually doing, claiming they were telling the honest truth. Truth to tell, it no doubt started well before that time period, but for me it was a disappointment to later find that the very people society chose (with promises of transparency and honesty) to lead them were bare-faced liars and cheats.

As partial proof of this, I offer the (already vetted) facts about the Vietnam conflict (Congress never declared war, so in my mind there was none). When I went to college in 1968 I found out the truth, which was that our government had been in the country, supplying ‘military advice and support’ since 1954, ten years before anyone in government admitted to it, having gone there to protect the interests of our ally, France, who had just been thrown out as colonial overseers, and the interests of the drug trade, in which both of those countries were heavily invested. Not 1964, when the government finally admitted we were there, because the number of troops sent there, and the money being spent, brought the situation into the public eye.

I have believed for a long time, and still believe, that the assassination of JFK was an act perpetrated by people in our own clandestine spook forces, who recruited and trained Oswald. It was designed to distract the American public from the chicanery in Southeast Asia, while at the same time removing Kennedy, who was proving to be an obstacle to the goals of the real government, and becoming far too popular. So, they gave us a martyr, blamed it on the Red Menace, and with the help of their (paid for) lackey, LBJ, proceeded to pour billions of dollars into the war, to continue to protect investments by our corporate classes in the heroin trade.

Today we find ourselves in ever more dire straits, as governments and politicians continue to lie, cheat, and steal, pretty much without any restrictions. The public, dazed and confused by a constant barrage of financial stress, is told lie after lie, confident-sounding utterances created by Spin-Meisters adept at making prevarication sound like truth. All of the politicians have become nothing more than talking heads, whose most valuable asset is their ability to lie with a straight face. And truth be told, there has to be some kind of character flaw in those people who run for office, for what sane person wishes to assume power over their fellow man?

It has gotten to the point that I spend each day fighting the urge to go buy a gun, and start hunting these assholes down.  But that would be giving in to their perversity; better to take up my pen (or laptop in this case) and start my campaign by offering to the public the Truth (as opposed to the so-called truths offered up daily in the news services), and do so in my own unique fashion, that is to say, with Pearls of Virtual Wisdom. With that in mind, we now go into the better part of this daily spew, with Truths from folks throughout the ages.  Enjoy!…..

“Sex! Lies! Drugs! Money! Power! Corruption! Man, I love Congress!” — Smart Bee

“They say you shouldn’t say nothin’ about the dead unless it’s good. He’s dead. Good.” — Moms Mabley

(I particularly like this one. I made a list of folks to whom this would apply, and in less than a minute came up with more than 10 names. Only two of them were already dead, and the other eight were all still out there, spewing their malice onto an unsuspecting public, shamelessly. Doesn’t say much for my tolerance, but then it has been in short supply for some time now.)

Annual drug deaths: tobacco: 395,000, alcohol: 125,000, ‘legal’ drugs: 38,000, illegal drug overdoses: 5,200, marijuana: 0.  Considering government subsidies of tobacco, just what is our government protecting us from in the drug war?” — William A. Turnbow

“I don’t mind being screwed, but the government thinks I’m a nymph.” — Smart Bee

“It’s said that ‘power corrupts’, but actually it’s  more true  that power attracts the corruptible.  The sane are usually attracted by other things than power.  When  they do  act,  they  think of it as service, which has limits. The tyrant, though, seeks mastery, for which he is  insatiable, implacable.” — David Brin, The Postman

Well, that is certainly enough for one morning. It can be a depressing subject, but we can consider ourselves fortunate that we have our own view of reality, and can modify it to suit ourselves.  Y’all take care out there…….

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

“Men are born ignorant, not stupid; they are made stupid by education.” — Bertrand Russell, History of Western Philosophy.

While I don’t usually use section two for ranting, the following poem, by an American icon, stimulated the following discussion, as any really good poem might do to someone, at any time…. especially one as powerful as this one….

I hadn’t realized that Walt Whitman was an atheist/agnostic….. It isn’t part of what is taught in your average elementary or high school here in this hypocritical, unabashedly Christian nation, which continuously spouts off about the separation of Church and State, yet gives a tax immunity to churches, even those of other denominations, and/or names of gods worshiped…. (Nor was it made common knowledge that the prevailing opinion, both in his own time, and with modern scholars studying his life, that Walt was probably gay, or bisexual, in his gender preferences…. Not that it matters at all, in the ultimate sense, but, merely knowing it provides some interesting perspective on his work, and his life, eh?….)

I call this (single-mindedness re: Christianity vs. Reality) hypocritical because, while this generosity in tax status displayed to other sects covers their claim of non-discrimination, simultaneously, at every turn of events in society, these single-minded “men of one book” work to weave their “Christian values”, and strictly Christian morals into very fabric of society, negating the entire spectrum of beliefs held by its denizens, by influencing the majority of elected officials to write laws that favor the morality based on Christian dogma, none of whom dare risk their own excommunication, or chance at heaven…. Bless their point little heads….

Aha…. Thankfully for my embarrassment level, I checked with Wikipedia re: Whitman’s religious views…. While I stand by what I stated above completely, it’s slightly out of context, as he was NOT an atheist, or an agnostic, per se, though his beliefs were radically different than those of the average American, especially in the eighteenth century. He is described as a deist, similar to my own stand, as one who believed that ALL religions were correct, and true as far as their metaphorical principles were concerned…

The differing views by all those religions, of what God looks like, or what He/She/It may, or may not have said, or where, or when, held no interest for him (as they don’t for me); his understanding of reality, and, thus, his views on divinity and spirituality were much too tall, and wide, and deep, to ever be confined into one little philosophy, or any one set of dogmatic principles, as seen from only one viewpoint….

To my way of thinking, this is a very intelligent way to think; he has nothing but my admiration for his independent individuality, in the face of a society that could not understand his mind, or his spirit…. Well, and for this poem, which prompted the above, with only three or four lines…

A Child’s Amaze

SILENT and amazed, even when a little boy,
I remember I heard the preacher every Sunday put God in his
statements,
As contending against some being or influence.

~~ Walt Whitman ~~


“Poetry is sane because it floats easily in an infinite sea; reason seeks to cross an infinite sea and so make it finite… he poet only desires exaltation and expansion, a world to stretch himself in. The poet only asks to get his head into the heavens. It is the logician who seeks to get the heavens into his head. And it is his head that splits.” — G. K. Chesterton “Orthodoxy”

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

Since most of today’s Pearl seems to have been produced at other times, I believe I’ll put together an old-school, but fresh, pearl for this section…. Let’s see what Smart Bee can find for us, with no hints as to what we should find, or see….

“Wisdom ceases to be wisdom when it becomes too proud to weep, too grave to laugh, and too self-full to seek other than itself.” — Kahlil Gibran

“I do not believe in the collective wisdom of individual ignorance.” — Thomas Carlyle

“Playing the banjo is a lot like throwing a javelin blindfolded… you don’t have to be very good to get people’s attention.” — Smart Bee

“Virtue is the beauty, and vice the deformity, of the soul.’ — Socrates (B.C. 469-399)

“Don’t believe your friends when they ask you to be honest with them. All  they really want is to be maintained in the good opinion they have of  themselves.” — Albert Camus

“They say you can’t do it, but sometimes that isn’t always true.” — Casey Stengel

“Let the greatest part of the news thou hearest be the least part of what thou believest, lest the greater part of what thou believest be the least part of what is true.” — Francis Quarles (1592-1644)

Hmm…. Not too bad, if a bit obscure…. But, all in all, I think it will do; it DOES make a point, though that point isn’t one usually found by any normal means….. But, then, we’ve never worried too much about normal, have we?….

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

I’m only sure of one thing at this point…. and that one thing escapes me still….. Be that as it may, all I have to do now is figure out what to say to either make up for what I’ve just put y’all through, or pretend that it’s good for you…. I think…. yes. We’ll go with the second one, because, even if it ISN’T good for you, it WANTS to be…. Intent is 87% of meaning, you know, and though it isn’t quite a much of a sure thing as being 99% sure, it’s not bad…. and, it’s done, so, there’s nothing more that can be done for it now…. Since that’s the case, I’ll see y’all tomorrow….

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

Tarzan is refusing to wear the tuxedo, Jane….

Ffolkes,

Bugger it…. I’m giving up, sort of…. I’m awake, again, with beau coups energy, safely silly yet potently real subject all picked out, and ample supplies of outrage at hand, all ready to rant…. whereupon I find myself, instead, staring at a blank page, trembling in fear, and wondering how in hell I’m going to pull this one out of the fire. I had a nice, controversial subject all ready to rant on, but, somehow, it broke down about four paragraphs in, and I can’t seem to find my way back to stable enough ground from which to fire my weapons; sarcasm must be accurately aimed, or it is useless…. So, I figure I’ll go start the intro, and what happens? Frozen brain! Stare as I might, nothing pops, and the moment of potentiality stretches into infinity, with me sweating, grunting, pulling my hair, and generally turning into a puddle of angst under my chair….

I had thought I’d outgrown this; it’s been months since I’ve been hampered by this kind of freeze-up, and, needless to say, I’m not happy about it….. I’m so damn frustrated, I’m not sure yet whether to apply an emergency method to get past this, or just have faith, and hope it will straighten itself out (a method of problem solving familiar to any Windows user…) …. Not being terribly adept at that part (having faith without evidence, and hoping for a magic bullet…), I suppose I’ll have to resort to an emergency procedure…. I hate that, as they tend to cause as much damage as they fix, but, if nothing else happens in the next few moments, we’ll find ourselves with no choice in the matter…. There ARE legal standards for safety that must be observed, you know….

Those safety standards are challenged by the procedures that may be employed, however, (that’s why they call them “emergency” procedures….), so, maybe we’ll just wait a few moments here, and see what happens…. I’m going to look away for a couple of seconds, and see what it’s like when I get back, okay?…. Okay….. Hang tight…. ‘Kay, I’m back…. let’s see where we are now….

“Cucumber should be well sliced, and dressed with pepper and vinegar, and then thrown out, as good for nothing.” — Samuel Johnson

You know, sometimes, I’m just not sure how to take Smart Bee…. Times such as this, it seems as if it is laughing at us, at the very least….. Then, I remember, it’s just a software program….. Theoretically, and experientially, it is not sentient; therefore, it cannot laugh at us…. But, dammit, they’re not here, listening, and feeling the sense of shame that having a damn database make fun of them produces, are they?…. No, they’re not, so they should just shut the hell UP!….

Uh oh, I may have tripped over into emergency procedure #2 accidentally….. That’s the one where I just let my frustration take over, turning me into a cursing, offensive caricature of those folks I am currently trashing, hurling insults and deprecations with both hands, and generally making an ass of myself, in order to offer some contrast to the normally serene atmosphere that is generally in place here at ECR…. It’s all in good fun, though, and it should be remembered that none of what may be said here is acceptable in court, as it is all fictional, technically…. Even when we speak of reality, it should be noted that by doing so, we remove ourselves at least two degrees from that reality, and thus have no real claim on its structure, or direction….

Nor, apparently, do we have any further claim to anything beyond the merely insane…. I’m babbling, aren’t I? It’s a shame, I know, but, it’s my gift, and it must be acknowledged, or problems can develop in the space-time continuum that aren’t amenable to the usual types of repair…. In other words, it’s best if we all just back away slowly now, and let this proceed as it will… Any further attempts at directing today’s process will certainly meet with not just resistance, but outright rebellion, so, ffolkes, do us all a favor, and don’t touch anything until the vehicle comes to a complete stop, and I have turned off the seat belt signs…. Thanks….

“My life is a patio of fun!” — Zippy the Pinhead
_____________________________

“Human beings are perhaps never more frightening than when they are convinced beyond doubt that they are right.” — Laurens Van der Post, The Lost World of the Kalahari (1958)

Can you think of a better description for the idiots in Congress who, thanks to their asinine insistence on having their own way, have stubbornly carried their conviction of rightness right up to the edge of Stupid, pushed it over, then jumped after it?…. I can’t…. These assholes are becoming more than just a little annoying with their undeserved sense of entitlement, and their completely misplaced elitism. In one way, I’m a bit encouraged, because this all seems like a swan song to me…. these fools have so alienated the majority of people in this country, they have sealed their fate, and I think we can consider this little glitch in things to be their last hurrah as a political force….

So far as I can tell from the news I read, the only people who continue to support these fools is themselves…. Nobody else in society is behind them, all the rest of us having become increasingly tired of the rhetoric and fanfare that accompanies all the issues these fools take up as part of their platform…. They have built their entire program on fear, and lies, producing the only result possible, to wit: more fear, and more lies…. We now see the natural result, as more and more mainstream voters recoil in disgust at the intransigence and intolerance these people have displayed. They just don’t seem to have a clue as to how out of touch with reality they are, and it is becoming increasingly obvious to the rest of society just how much their attitudes are causing trouble for all of us….

So, in that way, I am hopeful, that this entire shutdown of the government will be the straw that breaks the back of the Republican Party, and it can go the way of the Whigs, the Tories, and the dodo bird…. into extinction, where it belongs….  Hopefully, it will do so without dragging the rest of us along with them…. Oh, they’ll try; misery loves company…. But, I think, this time, they’re on their own, and they can sink into oblivion all by themselves, thank you very much….

As I just proved above, in the intro section, today’s effort is liable, at any moment, to turn on us, and become somewhat dangerous to handle without the proper equipment…. For example, this rant is now going to completely reverse direction, 180 degrees, and head off into the realm of intellectual stimulation, rather than the emotional stimulation that is the usual target for such pieces….. I’m too strange today to be logical, or organized, so, we’re going to switch horses in mid-stream, and take our shots with an old-school weapon, i.e., strangely apt sarcasm, instead of the relatively new-fangled bludgeon which comprises a proper rant…. So be it….

“I don’t pick on politicians. They ain’t done nothin’.” — Red Skelton

“The reported resort to astrology in the White House has occasioned much merriment.  It is not funny.  Astrological gibberish, which means astrology generally, has no place in a newspaper, let alone government. Unlike comics, which are part of a newspaper’s harmless pleasure and make no truth claims, astrology is a fraud.  The idea that it gets a hearing in government is dismaying.” — George F. Will, Washing Post Writers Group

“The fundamental cause of trouble in the world today is that the stupid are cocksure while the intelligent are full of doubt.” — Bertrand Russell

“Why won’t sharks eat lawyers?   Professional courtesy.” — Smart Bee

“You have all the characteristics of a popular politician: a horrible voice, bad breeding, and a vulgar manner.” — Aristophanes   c. 450-385 BC, Knights [424 BC] l. 217

“The wise man can pick up a grain of sand and envision a whole universe.  But the stupid man will just lie down on some seaweed and roll around until he’s  completely draped in it. Then he’ll stand up and go, “Hey, I’m Vine Man.” — Deep Thoughts, by Jack Handey

(Remind y’all of anyone? Someone in a blue suit, ruthlessly knotted red tie, with a cross for a tie-pin, a flag pin on the lapel, and a dumb expression?…. Oh come on, ffolkes… This little description could apply to ANY of the Tea Party Retardicans in the House of Representatives, and y’all know it…. Hell, I’ve heard Paul Ryan claim common ancestry with Vine Man, in more than one of his speeches…. )

“The art of leadership. . . consists in consolidating the attention of the people against a single adversary and taking care that nothing will split up that attention. . . .” — Adolf Hitler, “Mein Kampf”

(Keeping the attention of the public on the manufactured enemy is essential, because then they will not be looking at the true enemy, the leaders….)

“Any statistic that can be found which is interesting can be credited to the fact that this particular statistic is a mistake. If it is not a mistake, it is a misprint, and if it is not a misprint, it is unlawful release of classified information.” — Policy & Procedure Manual, National Security Administration, US Department of Shady Ethical Rationalizations

Just in case you hadn’t heard…. Monday, when the US government shut down, the NSA proudly, and perkily, announced that this week is National Cyber Security Awareness Week! (It’s true! I didn’t make it up….) Thought you might want to know….
_____________________________

After such a beginning, and such a weird first section, I need something that can only be described as wonderful…. This works…. Powerful, there’s another word that works…

How Many Moments Must(Amazing Each]

how many moments must(amazing each
how many centuries)these more than eyes
restroll and stroll some never deepening beach

locked in feverish time’s tide at poise,

love alone understands: only for whom
i’ll keep my tryst until that tide shall turn;
and from all selfsubtracting hugely doom
treasures of reeking innocence are born.

Then, with incredible the anywhere
eclipsing of a spirit’s ignorance
by every wisdom knowledge fears to dare,

how the(myself’s own self who’s)child will dance!

and when he’s plucked such mysteries as men
do not conceive– let ocean grow again.

~~ E.E. Cummings ~~

_____________________________

It’s been a strange morning, but, then, I have to go to the dentist later, and that always weirds me out, trying NOT to think about it…. In fact, I’m so weirded out about it today, I’m going to go with a completely random pearl, picked entirely at the whim of Smart Bee, just because I have no further mental energy, of a focused nature, to spare for it…. Hope it works out okay…. remember to hold your breath until the oxygenating drugs start to work…. Last time, we had to stop the bus, and proceed directly to the emergency exits….

“If you get to thinkin’ you’re a person of some influence, try orderin’ somebody else’s dog around.” — Bix Bender

“There exists in the human heart a depraved taste for equality, which impels the weak to attempt to lower the powerful to their own level, and reduces men to prefer equality in slavery to inequality with freedom.”  — Tocqueville, Alexis de (1805-1859)

“It is loneliness that makes the loudest noise. This is true of men as of dogs.” — Eric Hoffer

“Life may not be the party we hoped for, but while we’re here we should dance.” — Smart Bee

“Man is most nearly himself when he achieves the seriousness of a child at play.” — Heraclitus

“I’m a solipsist and, I have to say, I’m surprised there aren’t more of us.” — from a letter to Bertrand Russell

“The old proverb was now made good, “the mountain had brought forth a mouse.” — Plutarch (46-120 AD) — Life of Agesilaus II
_____________________________

On at least two occasions this morning, the effort to complete this process has nearly resulted in the use of emergency procedures, and that trend, I see, continued right up to the very last entry in section three, just above…. But, the necessity for such drastic action was mitigated at the very last second, by a final find in Smart Bee that put the entire piece into perspective…. That quote was placed where it belongs, in section one, and the whole shebang fell into balance… but, you’re no doubt severely disinterested in my occasionally elusive, but ever so-sincere gestalt. Suffice to say, it’s done…. On that note, I’ll bid thee adieu….

Y’all take care out there,
and May the Metaphorse be with you;
Blessed Be, dearest  Carole, Mark, and Theresa…
and everyone else, too…

When I works, I works hard.
When I sits, I sits loose.
When I thinks, I falls asleep.

Which is Why….


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

gigoid

dozer3

Now renting parodies of human existence….

Ffolkes,

Oh. My. Gosh…. (Hmm… just doesn’t have the same punch as the blasphemous version, does it?…. Oh, well, I like to be polite, and blasphemy so early in the morning is rude, even for me….) Any who, color me both surprised and dismayed…. Yesterday, or rather, night before last, I slept so hard, I hurt  myself! All day yesterday, my left shoulder was killing me, no matter how much I tried to get ahead of the pain with an extra dose of meds. You can only go so far in that direction before being compelled to turn back, due to side effects, or overdosing concerns. No, I realized, around noon, the pain was because I slept so long on my left side, the shoulder was suffering from being held in one position for too long, and not being at all adult about suffering the pain in silence…..

In spite of the agonizing and contortions this caused during the day yesterday, you can see that it was such an unnerving episode that it’s still bothering me today…. It’s either that, or I’m being a weenie, and I don’t want to hear anything at all from the peanut gallery about that statement….. It was unnerving due to the ironic nature of the pain; if I hadn’t slept so well, I wouldn’t have been in pain…. I could easily attribute that kind of thing to Murphy, but, it’s a bit subtle for him; his sense of humor runs more to pie-in-the-face, or keystone kops, than it does to irony or subtlety…..

Hmm, I hate to say it, but, that only leaves the weenie option, which is just wrong, and doesn’t deserve the screen-time I’m giving the whole issue…. But, then, isn’t that what the intro section is for? Long-winded, barely sane, ironic, or sardonic, statements about issues that have no meaning outside my bathroom walls, for the most part, meandering for what often seems like forever through strange landscapes and even weirder concepts, all to get to some obscure, semi-intellectual question about matters that are unresolvable in light of modern technology, or modern culture, combined with some rather odd habits and beliefs about human nature….. But, think of this…. where would you be if you weren’t here?

Aha! See, you can’t answer that, not without stopping to read, and think about it…. And, the answer you’d find wouldn’t make you anywhere nearly as happy and amused as you are here, so, see? It’s not a waste of time, for you, or for me….. This concludes our exercise in the dangers of using logic before 6 PM….. I hope you have enjoyed learning about the most pressing problem faced by our society today; please feel free to take the handouts with you when you leave, and don’t forget to stop in the gift shop…. the starving children will thank you for all you purchases, 25% of which will go to their care and feeding….

How did we get there? And who was that guy? Just what is going on here? Sheesh, step away to get a cup of coffee, and two whole paragraphs appear on the screen! Ignore the last two, ffolkes, that was Murphy, doing his thing….. Though I do implore y’all to forget these excessively weird paragraphs even exist, I AM going to take them as part of the legal requirements for this section, and bring this to a close…. Alright, I can hear those of you not snickering breathing huge sighs of relief out there, so, I’ll take the hint, and get on with the business for today….

Shall we Pearl?…..
_____________________________

“HEY CONGRESS! What ever happened to the Constitution?” — Smart Bee

You would, as would anyone in this position, assume this to be the beginning of another rant against politics, and those wonderful examples of broken morality, our beloved ruling class. But, nope, it’s not…. Oh, it could be, if I wished it. In fact, that is what I started to do, when I first put it up there for your perusal….. But, to be honest, I’m just not in the mood for ranting today. Not that I don’t feel the outrage at their daily shenanigans…. My opinion of Obama took another nosedive day before yesterday, when he canceled his trip to speak with the leader of what’s left of the USSR, Alex Putin, because the Russians refused to extradite Eric Snowden, the former tech worker turned whistleblower….

I think that what Mr. Snowden did deserves the thanks and support of all the American people, for bringing to light still more of the clandestine activities being perpetrated by those in power. The reaction of the Obama administration has gone a long way toward destroying his image of a President who is concerned for the common man, as he continues to completely ignore the illegality of the entire issue (of the prisons, of the torture, of the internal spying, of the court with no oversight…) and refuses to even address his own part in all of it….. It’s infuriating to see a man of such patriotism and bravery (Snowden) being persecuted by his own government, though it shouldn’t come as a surprise….

Hmm….. It seems that if I allowed myself to do so, I could  put out a pretty vitriolic rant; I guess my mood is more flexible than I had assumed for so early…. But, I still don’t feel like going all the way off, because, well, getting all emotionally worked up is not a good way to start the day, at least, not today…. Any who, to avoid any further complications due to angst or emotional outbursts, I’ll let Smart Bee put together a pearl, using the political scene of today’s society as a starting point for search parameters….. Or, as they are fond of saying downtown…. whatever, dude….

“Do thou restrain the haughty spirit in thy breast, for better far is gentle courtesy.” — Homer

“I’m just here for moral support. Ignore the gun.” — Smart Bee, channeling a Senator

“I see it as a compensation. I feel like I’m doing a good job. If no one is recognizing my good job, I recognize it.” — Orlando Arias, Los Angeles county health inspector, — after being filmed accepting a $200 bribe, — as reported by AP, November 10, 1998

“Let a fool hold his tongue and he will pass for a sage.” — Publius Syrus (42 BC) — Maxim 914

“The Three Stooges, the sinking ship, and the lone lifeboat: Ronald Reagan: “Maybe we should save the women and children.”
Richard Nixon: “F**k the women and children!”
Bob Packwood: “Gee, do you really think we have time?”

— the Stilt Man

I think “immoral” is probably the wrong word to use…I prefer the word “unethical.” — Ivan Boesky, inside stock trader

“All military type firearms are to be handed in immediately… The SS, SA and Stahlhelm give every respectable German man the opportunity of campaigning with them.   Therefore anyone who does not belong to one of the above named organizations and who unjustifiably nevertheless keeps his weapon… must be regarded as an enemy of the national government.” — SA Oberfuhrer of Bad Tolz, March, 1933

I’m going to stop there, because it’s beginning to get a bit obscure, and I don’t want to anyone to lose the message…. which, simply put, is this…. Despite all they will tell you, the elected officials in this country, from the top, all the way to the bottom, are NOT doing their jobs with YOUR best interests in mind, nor are they overly concerned with following the precepts of governing as set down in the Constitution by our forefathers. They are doing the best they can do to fill their own pockets, and the pockets of their friends, and anything other than that they tell you is a bare-faced lie…. Sorry to be the one to tell you, but, somebody has to….

Of course, the last guy who did so is now hiding out, being protected by the Russian (!!!???) government, not out of humanitarian impulses, but for political gamesmanship…. These days, it’s not a good idea to be publishing the secrets of the politicians… They get so annoyed, and swarm around, looking just like a hive of beetles under a rock, exposed to the light of day…..

Unfortunately, they’re more dangerous than beetles, because they have guns, and, sadly, the force of the laws they’ve written to protect their rights to plunder, and to allow them to lie to us….. Watch your step, ffolkes, or you may be their next target for exploitation (not that you aren’t already being screwed over…. but, it could become specific and personal, rather than just as a part of the general fucking of society that is taking place…..)

I’ll leave you with two final thoughts on the subject, just because I can….

“I don’t pick on politicians. They ain’t done nothin’.” — Red Skelton

“Truly, you are a person who speaks the truth, lives the truth, abides by  the truth. And truth is, of course, stranger than fiction, and you certainly are too.” — Smart Bee
_____________________________

Strangely enough, I’m still in the mood for Emily, so, you’ll have to put up with her insane genius for another day….

I cannot live with you,
It would be life,
And life is over there
Behind the shelf

The sexton keeps the key to,
Putting up
Our life, his porcelain,
Like a cup

Discarded of the housewife,
Quaint or broken;
A newer Sevres pleases,
Old ones crack.

I could not die with you,
For one must wait
To shut the other’s gaze down,–
You could not.

And I, could I stand by
And see you freeze,
Without my right of frost,
Death’s privilege?

Nor could I rise with you,
Because your face
Would put out Jesus’.
That new grace

Glow plain and foreign
On my homesick eye,
Except that you, than he
Shone closer by.

They’d judge us–how?
For you served Heaven, you know
Or sought to;
I could not,

Because you saturated sight,
And I had no more eyes
For sordid excellence
As Paradise.

And were you lost, I would be,
Though my name
Rang loudest
On the heavenly fame.

And were you saved,
And I condemned to be
Where you were not,
That self were hell to me.

So we must keep apart,
You there, I here,
With just the door ajar
That oceans are,
And prayer,
And that pale sustenance,
Despair!
 
~~ Emily Dickinson ~~

_____________________________

This section’s pearl is a tribute to perseverance; I’m tired, and just want to be done for the day, but, I must live up to my own standards, because nobody else will… any who, no worries, we’ll just do a random harlequin old-school style pearl, and all will be well…. provided SB doesn’t give me a hard time…..

“For the wise men of old, the cardinal problem had been how to conform the soul to reality. And the solution has been knowledge, self-discipline, and virtue. But for the contemporary mindset the problem is how to subdue reality to the wishes of man.” — C.S. Lewis  “The Abolition of Man”

“He is the MELBA-BEING…  the ANGEL CAKE… XEROX him…  XEROX him –” — Zippy the Pinhead

“A State which is incompetent to satisfy different races condemns itself; a State which does not include them is destitute of the chief basis of self- government.  The theory of nationality, therefore, is a retrograde step in history.” — Lord Acton (1834-1902)

“If you don’t run your own life, somebody else will.” — John Atkinson

“Never create by law what can be accomplished by morality.” — Charles-Louis Secondat Baron de Montesquieu

“It is so basic. A human being is an innocent part of nature. Our civilization has distorted this universal quality that allows us to feel at home in our skin. Other animals have coats that they accept, but the human race has yet to come to terms with being nude.” — Ruth Bernhard

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

See? All in the wrist….
_____________________________

Producing these Pearls has, of late, been an epic undertaking…. but, since there isn’t anything else that is pulling at me to get done, I can only be grateful for having something that keeps me out of trouble, for the most part….. I’m not going to comment on what that may be costing me in terms of self-respect, but, whatever it is, my ego can take it…. and, no, I have no idea what any of that means, particularly…. Let’s see what kind of damage I’ve done so far…..

Okay, then…. That there is some serious business…. I didn’t realize I had come down so copiously on the BRC today, but, that’s okay by me, they deserve all the crap we can throw at them, just to keep things balanced…. Plus, it’s done, so, hey, I’m outta here…..  Y’all take care out there, and May the Metaphorse be with you….

When I works, I works hard.
When I sits, I sits loose.
When I thinks, I falls asleep.

Which is Why….


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

gigoid

dozer3

Authentic wax slippers show fading glory…..

Ffolkes,
Far removed from sanity, I sit, alone and fierce, holding my thoughts close, as if they will keep me warm. Over in the corner, the giggling demons from my personal hell are gathered, eagerly awaiting a sign, a sign that my last hold on reality has been sundered by the sharp edges of my failure, and they can finally fulfill their purpose, to drag me, willing or no, to my fated meeting with the Prince of Lies…..

I can feel their impatience to be on their way, with me in tow; it breaks over me like waves of disapproval from a room full of aunts and uncles from back east, cross-generational dinosaurs, smelling of sweat and ignorance. Little do they know that they are once again doomed to failure this day; I will not be making the meeting with Satan, nor any of his underlings. Not today…. today is the day that all my planning, all of my patience, will see its reward. By morning, the world order will have changed, and as long as I don’t pull the switch prematurely, life will improve immeasurably for the poor and downtrodden. And for the rich and indulgent, well, perhaps what they experience may not be improvement, but it will be justice. Death plays no favorites, after all…..

“The time has come,” he said, “to speak of many things… of ceiling wax, and…..”  and bushy packs, and harps of golden strings…. well, no, that’s not what he said, but it filled in a little more space, didn’t it?  Rhymed, too…  🙂    Sorry, you’ll have to bear with me…. woke up early, thanks to more muscle cramps (always a delightful way to wake up from sleep, eh? “Here, have some excruciating pain for a few minutes…. better now? Okay, go on back to sleep; never mind the lingering ache in your calf, or the pounding heart, or the fact you are now wide awake. Just go on back to sleep….”), and that process always makes my output a bit strange, even for my loose standards of that particular quality. Don’t fret, it will pass shortly…… while we’re waiting, care to go Pearling?…..

“Men govern nothing with more difficulty than their tongues, and can moderate their desires more than their words.” — Spinoza
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“Ninety percent of science fiction is crap. But then, ninety percent of anything is crap.” — Theodore Sturgeon

For those unfamiliar with Theodore Sturgeon, he is a science fiction writer, of impeccable reputation, especially among his peers, a successful and prolific author of many books and short stories of wondrous scope, unlimited imagination, and glowing intelligence. He writes stories of great beauty, with a clean, spare, yet elegant style, and demonstrates a deep understanding of, and love for, the human experience; none of his work comes close to being considered as “crap”, for sure. And the truth of his assertion almost requires no evidence, for ample examples of its relevance exist naturally, in plain view. I don’t have much more I can really add to the concept; it is pretty self-explanatory, and can obviously serve anyone as a good rule of thumb to keep in pocket, for application on a regular basis throughout the average day….. it helps one avoid all sorts of crap that could otherwise get tracked all over your otherwise well-groomed path through life…..
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“And it came to pass that in the hands of the ignorant, the words of the bible were used to beat plowshares into swords…” — Alan Watts

“…You don’t have many suspects who are innocent of a crime. That’s contradictory.  If a person is innocent of a crime, then he is not suspected.” — Edwin Meese

Viewed in light of the first quote, if one may assume its veracity, even temporarily, for the sake of argument, the second quote, while disappointing in the extreme, is not as surprising as it might otherwise have been seen. Oh, where to begin a response to such an outrageous display of ignorance and bigotry? I count only 26 words here, and can think of at least 14 ways this is just wrong, just off the top of my head (okay, hyperbole aside, it’s all wrong…). It piles one false assumption on top of another until any glimmer of possible relation to the truth, or reality, is completely obscured. Unfortunate as it is, this mind-set is still all-too-common, especially amongst the political pundit review currently on parade.

As a matter of fact, this mind-boggling distortion of our actual laws on the subject reminds me very strongly of three of our esteemed Republican candidates being followed avidly by the news-mongers, especially Mitt the Twitt…. in the last week alone (post Etch-A-Sketch-gate), he has made, (and I, along with a fairly large number of bloggers & citizens keeping track, counted them), at minimum, 19 apparently deliberate lies that involved vague accusations of impropriety by the current administration, or the evil intent of events already proven beneficial to the general public.  Each and every one of these statements, when checked against reality, statistics publicly available, or what was reported in other media sources, was obviously made up on the spot, or completely in reverse of what actually occurred. This man is so desperate to appear confident and forceful, he is completely oblivious to the fact that no one is buying into his nonsense any more; in response his lies get more and more removed from any connection to reality or truth.  His two closest challengers are no better; they make a habit of making statements that have absolutely no bearing on the subject under discussion, or accuse the media of playing favorites to distract the audience from whatever question they are attempting to avoid answering by doing so.

All of these men have lost touch with reality in a lot of areas, and their denial of this fact serves as further evidence of that loss. Their belief, that they have their finger on the pulse of the American people, is so far removed from the truth, it approaches the realm of delusion. They have completely lost track of, or denied, any connection they may have once had to the rest of their countrymen, insisting that their out-dated, ignorant policies, that didn’t work 45 years ago, or 90 years ago, will nonetheless work in today’s rapidly-changing arena of global politics, while completely ignoring the mountain of evidence to the contrary. They have assumed the mantle of the fanatic, the zealot, a segment of the population that has previously been clearly identified as those folks who, when they have lost sight of their goal, redouble their efforts. Sad, and a terrible waste of everyone else’s time and energy to have to even listen to such nonsense. They have given up their place in the human tribe, and don’t even know it…… Pathetic, if you ask me…..

Mi taku oyasin.  (We are all related.) — Lakota belief
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There are times when the pearls I find that stimulate me to want to write about them are found in clusters. Several at once, all closely related, or similarly themed, just throw themselves at me, clamoring for inclusion. On these occasions I’ve learned to let them have their way. It is just as effective a lesson as my comments usually can claim to be, and has the added bonus of requiring less actual work on my part; the authors I choose have all done my thinking, and expressing for me, and usually much better than my discussions. Below are some observations on politics, patriotism, and the price of liberty, from some pretty well-respected political observers……

“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 is 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

“My kind of loyalty was loyalty to one’s country, not to its institutions or its officeholders.  The country is the real thing, the substantial thing, the eternal thing; it is the thing to watch over, and care for, and be loyal to; institutions are extraneous, they are its mere clothing, and clothing can wear out, become ragged, cease to be comfortable, cease to protect the body from winter, disease, and death.” — Mark Twain (1835-1910)

“I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it.” — Thomas Jefferson to A. Stuart, 1791

“I believe that all government is evil, and that trying to improve it is largely a waste of time.” — H. L. Mencken

“I don’t pick on politicians. They ain’t done nothin’.”– Red Skelton

“Don’t knock the weather; nine-tenths of the people couldn’t start a conversation if it didn’t change once in a while.” — Kin Hubbard
(Don’t ask…. it just fit, that’s all…)

and finally….

Sigh no more, ladies, sigh no more,
Men were deceivers ever,–
One foot in sea and one on shore,
To one thing constant never.
— William Shakespeare (1564-1616), Much Ado about Nothing — Act ii, Sc. 3 (Will Shakespeare channeling George Carlin…)
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“Few things are more dangerous than a hobbit with low blood sugar.’ — unknown Tolkein fan….

Hmm… an interesting claim. I would be tempted to add some of the most dangerous creatures I’ve encountered over the course of my life…. and being a hedonist at heart, I seldom fail to give in to temptation, so….

I would say this list could be easily be expanded to include most of the two year old human children I’ve known, those with either low blood sugar, or its reverse. Both conditions create behavioral anomalies in small children that can have disastrous effects on everything, and everyone, within hearing distance…… Another category to include might be the well-trained and viciously enthusiastic female consumers found in malls world-wide these days, especially when one finds one’s self unexpectedly caught in the DMZ between one or more of them and a well-advertised sale at Macy’s… very risky….. (BTW, this is not a condemnation of women, nor am I implying the phenomenon is exclusive to the distaff side of society. Ever get stuck on the way to the restroom at the ballpark when they announce the last chance to buy a beer? I’ve sustained moderate injuries twice in just that scenario… scary…)

I would also add certain categories of cats to this list…. Cats who have been offended, or, especially egregious in a cat’s eyes, laughed at by a human, have been known to engage in long-term, vindictive acts of revenge that would chill the heart of the most hardened terrorist. If you’ve ever pissed one off, you would know I am speaking nothing but sterling truth; few things in this universe send us so clear a message as a cat who just pooped in your slippers, moments before the time it KNEW you would wake up and slip your feet into them without looking.  Euuewww!  I’ve also known them to politely go jump on an electric stove and pee on the burners, unseen and unnoticed, just long enough before you start to cook dinner to let it dry, thus increasing the stench, and making sure you regret not letting the ‘puir beastie’ outside when it wanted to go….

And that mangled rat carcass it left in the bathroom doorway, you know, the one you thought was a present from your adorable little friend? Little did you know, that it KNEW your tendency toward severe nausea when confronted unexpectedly with blood, and left it there on purpose; most likely it was hidden nearby, digital camera at paw, to watch and chuckle over your reaction when you discovered the damn thing on the way to worship at the throne of Ralph.  Any cat person can tell you, laughing at cats is a poor choice, fraught with nasty surprises and moments of sheer terror, all with an amused cat in the background, taking photos to post online…..

“The universe is full of surprises — most of them nasty.” — Solomon Short
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“Fishing gives you a sense of where you fit in the scene of things. Your place in the universe. I mean, here I am, one small guy with a fishing pole on this vast beach and out there in the blue expanse of ocean are these hundreds of millions of fish… laughing at me.”– More from the fertile mind of Anonymous…. (I think my research team of quote compilers has run into a lazy patch….I’ve seen a lot of work by Anonymous of late, enough to rouse some suspicion as to their level of job satisfaction….)

Though Anonymous, I like this; it’s deeper than it seems. In its quietly amusing way, it lays out a good example of how a Master approaches Life, to wit: “Everything is relative, so learn to appreciate the connections, without sweating the small stuff.”

Now, you may wonder, as I have, how I can pull all that deep wisdom out of the little story above. All I can tell you is, your guess is as good as mine, because I haven’t the faintest clue. I try not to filter, or prematurely edit my responses to things I read, as I’ve found there is often more to it than the first cursory glance will reveal. But, somehow, there is some part of me that sees that deeper meaning, and makes me stop and begin examining the statement more closely. This part of me has, so far, achieved an amazingly high percentage of being right.

All I can I say is, it’s a gift…. and I don’t refuse gifts from the universe; as a rule I find them to be exceedingly valuable, and it would dishonor the giver to reject the boon.  Besides, it saves me a LOT of time, which I can then put into my ever-so-entertaining strange visions of truth and beauty…… Well, it works for me…..
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I must be done…. there’s no mistaking that state of confused bemusement that settles over me when my subconscious has given final approval to the original draft. It’s not an uncomfortable feeling, yet it has its overtones of both relief and melancholy, which adds a touch of poignancy, and blocks any leanings toward regret (which is relatively unnatural for me anyway; I gave it up many years ago…. lousy company…).

I’m hoping what I’ve written brings some small entertainment into your sphere this morning (morning here anyway….), and maybe even gives you a chuckle, or an encouraging lesson you can use today.  Y’all take care out there, and in the wonderful words of the Anasazi, “May you walk in Beauty, always….”


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

gigoid

Kowabunga!