Brief moments of sanity aside….

Ffolkes,

“The shoe that fits one person pinches another;
there is no recipe for living that suits all cases.”

~~ Carl Jung ~~

221B Baker St

221B Baker Street, London

Hajime…. I am not certain exactly when, but, I’m coming up on five years here at WordPress, sometime in July, or August, I think. I should check. At any rate, it’s been a while. I’ve attempted to post every day, at least once; though I haven’t quite made that goal, I’ve come pretty damn close, with well over 1500 posts to my credit. While I can regard that as a satisfying accomplishment, I must be honest enough to say, not all of it is what might be called fresh, as I’ve recycled a fair amount of what I’ve written for new posts. I call it cheating, though, with the caveat I’m only stealing from myself. So be it.

Today, I’m still busy, and without my usual sense of unease with not making the deadline I’ve set for myself each day. This has allowed me to fall completely into cheat mode. Below you’ll find a fresh pearl, composed of material previously posted, including my longest-ever rant. It’s all fairly standard stuff, for around here, so, no surprises there. I’ll even go so far as to let it speak for itself from this point on, as I intend to cut this short, Moreover, I’m doing that now, before I lose my nerve. I’ll just push this button, right here, and….

Shall we Pearl?….

“Education is about the only thing lying around loose the world, and it’s about the only thing a fellow can have as much of as he’s willing to haul away.” — George Lorimer

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george_carlin_unraveling_a_free_speech_icon

George Carlin

Image from http://www.salon.com via Google Images

George needs no introduction; quite simply, he was the best. Ever. You can argue if you like, but, that would not be a stellar use of time…. Instead, just listen to the proof…..

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George Carlin
It’s Bad For Ya

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https://youtu.be/WuW93V4eH74

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Sandclock .jpg

 

One of my Gentle Readers complained of no rant yesterday, so, today, I’m making up for all the rants I’ve missed the past week or so. This may be the longest rant I’ve done, though that’s a guess. It is pretty long, and, though written early in 2014, it all remains perfectly valid, as far as I can see…. I hope you read it all, and pay attention, because it’s all about stuff that affects you directly…. Enjoy!….

From 10/18/2014:

“He must needes goe whom the devill doth drive.” ~~ John Heywood (c. 1565) — Proverbes, Part ii, Chap. vii ~~

“As you know, I planned a trip out there for some time, so it fits in very nicely.” ~~ president George Bush, on his trip to LA after the riots ~~

“Nobody goes to bed hungry in America” — R. Reagan

“Politicians aren’t born, they are excreted.” — Cicero

“That it should come to this!” ~~ William Shakespeare (1564-1616), Hamlet — Act i, Sc. 2 ~~

The above five-star pearl is a lead-in group, mostly aimed at those with whom the following discussion is concerned. Below you’ll find two links to articles discussing two separate, but related issues from the news yesterday, found in the UK Guardian’s US edition online. They are both in-depth pieces, with a bit of egregiously egotistic back patting in the first one, but, both are more involved, in-depth, and in tune with the truth than any news organization from the US I can find, with the most important issues made clear, the culpability of the responsible parties made obvious, and the downright evil prevarication by the FBI director laid out for all to see….

After those first two articles, I’ve also included an excellent column on the same subject by one of the Guardian’s staff opinion writers, named Trevor Timm. He gives a good summary of the exact points I wish to cover in his opening paragraph, which I’ve included as an excerpt, below the link. After that, I’ll have a few comments, and we’ll see how it goes from there…. Hitch up your belts, & make sure your backpacks are secured ffolkes, this could take a while…. but, as Lord Peter has been known to say, “This ain’t a joke, Charles! It’s important. Damn important!”…..

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/oct/16/-sp-revealed-whisper-app-tracking-users

“Whisper acknowledged that it researches the location of specific users it believes are posting newsworthy information, but emphasised it typically uses GPS data.

Whisper stressed the IP location data it uses for people who have asked not to be followed is rough and unreliable.

“We occasionally look at user IP addresses internally to determine very approximate location,” the company said. “User IP addresses may allow very coarse location to be determined to the city, state or country level.”

It added: “Whisper does not request or store any personally identifiable information from users, therefore there is never a breach of anonymity. From time to time, when a user makes a claim of a newsworthy nature, we review the user’s past activity to help determine veracity.”

The company strongly rejected any assertion of wrongdoing. “The Guardian’s assumptions that Whisper is gathering information about users and violating user’s privacy are false,” it said. “The privacy of our users is not violated in any of the circumstances suggested in the Guardian story.”

Four days later, Whisper rewrote large sections of its terms of service and introduced an entirely new privacy policy.

Whereas the previous terms and conditions described all of Whisper’s tracking of user location as “voluntary”, the new terms now warn users to “bear in mind that, even if you have disabled location services, we may still determine your city, state, and country location”.

Since becoming aware that the Guardian planned to publish its story, the anonymous app has also inserted a new line into its privacy policy.

It now warns users that turning on the app’s geolocation feature may “allow others, over time, to make a determination as to your identity”.

http://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2014/oct/16/fbi-director-attacks-tech-companies-encryption

“…he recognised their embrace of encryption responded to “perceive[d]” market pressures in the wake of Snowden’s disclosures. But Comey suggested that end-to-end mobile device encryption amounted to a safe haven for criminals.

“Are we no longer a country that is passionate both about the rule of law and about their being no zones in this country beyond the reach of that rule of law? Have we become so mistrustful of government and law enforcement in particular that we are willing to let bad guys walk away, willing to leave victims in search of justice?” he said.
Comey acknowledged that the Snowden disclosures caused “justifiable surprise” among the public about the breadth of government surveillance, but hoped to mitigate it through greater transparency and advocacy.

Yet the FBI keeps significant aspects of its surveillance reach hidden even from government oversight bodies. Intelligence officials said in a June letter to a US senator that the FBI does not tally how often it searches through NSA’s vast hoards of international communications, without warrants, for Americans’ identifying information.
Comey frequently described himself as being technologically unprepared to offer specific solutions, and said he meant to begin a conversation, even at the risk of putting American tech companies at a competitive disadvantage.

“Where we may get is to a place where the US, through its Congress, says, ‘You know what, we need to force this on American companies,’ and maybe they’ll take a hit. Someone in some other country will say, ‘Ah, we sell a phone that even with lawful authority people can’t get into.’ But that we as a society are willing to have American companies take that hit. That’s why we have to have this conversation,” Comey said

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/oct/17/government-internet-backdoor-surveillance-fbi

“FBI director James Comey wants a US government-mandated backdoor into your iPhone and your Google account. But Comey doesn’t want to call his proposed privacy invasion a backdoor. He doesn’t understand how it would work. And he expects everyone who has been horrified by the NSA’s mass surveillance to just sit back, weaken their personal security and trust that the government will never abuse it.

Comey also claimed on Thursday that the “Post-Snowden pendulum” needs to swing back in favor of the government, neglecting to mention Congress has passed literally zero laws reigning in government surveillance. In fact, the main reason the major tech companies are pushing forward with encryption is because the government refuses to follow the will of the people and curtail the NSA’s powers at all. If Comey wanted a careful debate about the right balance of privacy and security before decisions like Apple’s are made, like he also said on Thursday night, maybe he should’ve advocated for that when the NSA was massively expanding their powers for years in complete secrecy.

Twitter tweet October 16, 2014: “Comey’s right: Deployment of strong crypto should be preceded by thoughtful debate. Which we had & correctly resolved 15 years ago.— Julian Sanchez (@normative)

So while we break out the world’s smallest violin as Jim Comey complains about the “Post-Snowden pendulum”, remember: the US government, through its own secret actions, brought this on themselves.”

“Who’s the more foolish? The fool or the fool who follows him?” — Obi-Wan Kenobi, “Star Wars”

I can’t say, with any degree of accuracy, but, I’m pretty sure I’ve never heard such a load of pure bullshit, straight from the bull’s butt, in a very, very long time…. When Richard Nixon raised his peace sign fingers, and stated, “I am not a crook.”, was probably the last time…. I swear, this man, this Comey, who heads up the FBI, obviously has the lowest opinion of the American public’s intelligence of almost anyone I’ve ever seen…. The demon-spawn from hell, Newt Gargoyle, or Gribble, or Grinch, Grngich, or whatever his weird-ass name was, came close on a regular basis, as did that ghoul, Dick Cheney, but, this Über-cop, this gestapo at the head of our nation’s largest domestic police force has, I believe. taken the cake….

Moreover, he implies that anyone who doesn’t support his, and the government’s, grab for power over every aspect of our lives is unpatriotic, a cowardly enemy of American principles, which, according to HIM, start (and, by implication, end…) with submissive respect for the “rule of law”, suggesting that the American public should feel privileged to allow them to have access to ALL of their private information…. Of course, the implied insult here is that only criminals and other unsavory characters should have something to hide from them, and their oh-so-perfect moral position….

What a crock of shit! I can’t say it any plainer than that…. and, I’ve probably said enough by now, anyway…. I’ll leave you with one last wake-up pearl, to think about when you’re assigning blame for what is happening in today’s world….. The FBI director, in his remarks, asks what he considers a rhetorical question, to wit:

“Have we become so mistrustful of government and law enforcement in particular that we are willing to let bad guys walk away, willing to leave victims in search of justice?”

I can only answer with a resounding “Yes, we have! We have lost ALL trust in the police. and the government, with good reason. I wouldn’t trust you to tell me the correct time!”

Well, I might not say that last part to his face, maybe, but, I can assure you, I’d want to, very badly, and would have to exert significant effort of will to refrain from doing so…. though, why I would bother, I don’t know…..

“Who’s the more foolish? The fool or the fool who follows him?” — Obi-Wan Kenobi, “Star Wars”

I was going to leave it at that, but, as I finished, I received an email from EFF, the Electronic Frontier Foundation, a non-profit activism organization made up of people, like me, and, hopefully, y’all, who are concerned with keeping the internet free of corporate influence and government oppression, to guarantee the open, free interchange of ideas and communication that characterizes how it is supposed to be, as intended by those who created it…. They are one of the entities who brought suit against the government about this issue, in a suit which is now about to be heard by the Supreme Court, along with several others they have supported, or helped to organize…

Below, I have included three links to articles on their home site, which speak to the information and issues of which we spoke above in this section. Each article clearly explains how the government and other entities are trying to subvert the internet, making it a tool for oppression, rather than a tool for expanding human knowledge and culture…. These explain how the government, and their myrmidons, the police, are working to take away the usefulness of having such a means to spread knowledge, wanting instead to keep it for their own use, which involves the control over our lives they so desperately desire….

Good info, ffolkes, well researched and written, very clearly presented…. I’ve donated to this one, which I don’t do, as a rule, but, they’re working hard to protect US, that is, YOU and ME, so, they deserve my support…. If nothing else, it will give you an idea of how the situation stands today….

https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2014/10/even-golden-key-can-be-stolen-thieves-simple-facts-apples-encryption-decision

https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2014/09/computercop-dangerous-internet-safety-software-hundreds-police-agencies

http://www.wired.com/2014/10/nsa-mind-bender-wont-tell-info-already-leaked-media/

“The best way to lose freedom is not to do anything.” — Smart Bee

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Comedy_Tragedy

A Dubiously Soft Morning

Idiosyncratic images, clamoring for regard,
fill up the white, white screen on which I view
my life, never seeing, nor invited to sup
ambrosial remnants of anything new.

Still, yet almost in motion, allegory sails away
bobbing gently, quick and easy to find,
signs of one happy child, seriously at play,
blissfully immersed, focused joy in mind.

Formidable cries of outraged simple justice
echo plaintive relevance, in half the time.
Maladaptive infants, destined for hospice
salvage an only child, daring to sing in rhyme.

Creativity equals unquestioning farce,
often reaching for absurdity, brazenly afire.
Instead, a blow is felt no joy will ever soften,
accepting the price, added to the cost of desire.

~~ gigoid ~~

7/26/2013

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About Hopi Indian Symbols
Since we’re cheating full out today, here is an old, old-school pearl, with a rather ironic beginning, just to keep things confusing, as if today’s effort here weren’t enough. It’s a good one, though, so, enjoy!….

From 9/18/2014:

In order to say there is at least one fresh section today, I offer for your consideration the following old-school pearl, a random, harlequin style, with no obvious parameters…. often, these turn out to be the very best kind, so, we can hope…..

“People are always blaming their circumstances for what they are. I do not believe in circumstances. The people who get on in this world are the people who get up and look for the circumstances they want, and if they cannot find them, make them.” — George Bernard Shaw (1856-1950)

“Forgive me my nonsense as I also forgive the nonsense of those who think they talk sense.” — Robert Frost

“You can’t make up anything anymore. The world itself is a satire. All you’re doing is recording it.” — Art Buchwald

“Certum est quia impossibile est.” [It is certain because it is impossible.] — Tertullian (160-240 AD) — De Carne Christi, c. 5

“One truth stands firm. All that happens in world history rests on something spiritual. If the spiritual is strong, it creates world history. If it is weak, it suffers world history.” — Albert Schweitzer

“Destiny is but a phrase of the weak human heart – the dark apology for every error. The strong and virtuous admit no destiny. On earth conscience guides; in heaven God watches. And destiny is but the phantom we invoke to silence the one and dethrone the other.” — Edward Bulwer-Lytton

“He declared that he knew nothing, except the fact of his ignorance.” — Diogenes Laertius (c. 200 AD) — Socrates, xvi

Works every time…..

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‘T is done, and, done to death, I’d say. I’ll skip the usual witty repartee, if such as this can be so labeled, and leave you to the rest of your day. I hope you enjoyed this little journey through the past. I’ll be back tomorrow, most likely, but, hopefully, with some material a bit fresher than today. In any case, we’re outta here, and now…. See ya, ffolkes. Count on 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

Image

À bientôt, mon cherí….

Last train to Paducah.boarding now on track 13….

Ffolkes,

The ruling passion, be it what it will,
The ruling passion conquers reason still.

 ~~ Alexander Pope (1688-1744) ~~

~~ Moral Essays, Epistle iii, Line 153 ~~

11-15-2015 002

    Well…. Don’t worry, my next words won’t be “and, that’s a deep subject”….. Why not? Simply because I’m feeling more dignified than that; it’s too early to give in for the day already…. Of course, dignity is something all of us are able to do without to survive, but, survival sure feels better when we have it…. I suppose we could say that is true of a lot of things we humans feel, to wit: we feel a lot of things that don’t necessarily help us in our most important task as humans…. But, then, ask any two humans what their most important task may be, and you’ll get at least two answers, if not more….. We’re an odd species, to be sure….

That said, and since I am a member of said fickle, yet charming simian phylum, I think I may also say, we are a sorry bunch of naked apes, and will, no doubt, come to an ignominious end, most likely before most of us have a clue as to the time, let alone the ending time…. It’s a natural state when we spend most of our time in this plane of existence struggling AGAINST the basic rules of the universe, trying to overcome our inner confusion by imposing our own sense of order upon the world…. Since that NEVER works, we spend a lot of time, scratching our heads, wondering what went wrong….

Like this morning, for example…. Here I am, once more typing away madly, trying to fill in this space so we can get to the meat of the matter, but, obviously, I haven’t a clue as to how to proceed with any degree of certainty as to my final destination…. Hell, I can barely remember my name this early, but, here I am, making like a writer, just as it I were one…. And, in point of fact, I am enough of one to realize I should have gone with my initial impulse, to comment on the lions in the picture I took, above….

I mean, look how easy it would have been to talk about it, as the two guardians of the steps react to the presence of the leaf blowing across the yard…. See how they both are focused on it, with paw raised in warning, to tell it to stay away…. But, no, I had to go with my second, more dignified, but less interesting discussion of human nature, and it’s all-too-apparent flaws…. Go figure….

Nonetheless, here we are, down the page far enough to declare victory over the forces of obstruction, aka, Murphy and his myrmidons, at least for the day…. Often, if I can beat him off this early, he’ll go find someone else to fuss with; we’ll see how that goes…. In the meantime, I’m going to get started on getting the rest of this mess done, so, hang on while I use some of my vaunted skills at piloting this weird craft, and take us out of here, into the world of Virtual Wisdom, or a reasonable facsimile….

Shall we Pearl?

“I cannot believe in a God who wants to be praised all the time.” — Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche (1844-1900)

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It’s a classical day today…..

Four Seasons ~ Vivaldi

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In place of today’s rant, which isn’t happening, here is what I collected to give it a start, along with the pearls I found to represent the point I’m making by including the articles…. My original intent was to show how the government of this, and every country in the world, mostly, is actively engaged in oppressing the citizens of their own countries…. But, it began to appear like a subject too big for one little pearl, so, instead, I’ve put the appropriate comment from SB, or whomever it delegates, above each link….

After the links, you’ll find an old-school pearl, with some rather pointed remarks regarding those who engage in the public orgy of masturbation as displayed on a daily basis in the halls of Congress, the White House, and the Supreme Court, all of which are in varying stages of corporate enslavement, or are otherwise showing the signs of insanity common to all sociopathic personalities….

“No man’s life, liberty, or property is safe while the Legislature is in session.” — Lysander Spooner

http://www.newyorker.com/news/daily-comment/press-freedom-new-censorship

“A free press can of course be good or bad, but, most certainly, without freedom it will never be anything but bad… . Freedom is nothing else but a chance to bet better, whereas enslavement is a certainty of the worse.” — Albert Camus, Resistance, Rebellion and Death (1960)

http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2472148,00.asp

I could have added a number of other headlines, with the concomitant pearl to highlight its point, but, I’ll show some restraint, and confine myself to finding a balanced number of pearls of virtual wisdom, all of which will further expose the assholes for what they are, or, at minimum, take a shot at a vital spot with our barbed missiles…. The first pearl kind of sets the proper tone, with the rest adding in their own melodies, all of which will form a charming little tune, to show the fuckheads for what they are, in the space of a nine-star pearl….

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 ~~


“Keeping freedom safe from democracy” — Vision statement of the GOP, 2016

“Disbelief in magic can force a poor soul into believing in government and business.” — Tom Robbins

“A government solution to a problem is always followed by the creation of at least two additional problems, either of which was worse than the original problem which the government set out to solve.” — Smart Bee

“A leader leads from in front, by the power of example. A ruler pushes from behind, by means of the club, the whip, the power of fear.” — Edward Abbey

“Men who allow their love of power to give them a distorted view of the world are to be found in every asylum: one man will think he is the governor of the Bank of England, another will think he is the king, and yet another will think he is God.  Highly similar delusions, if expressed by educated men in obscure language, lead to professorships of philosophy, and if expressed by emotional men in eloquent language, lead to dictatorships.” — Bertrand Russell (1872-1967)

“It is more than a crime; it is a political fault,” — Joseph Fouche (1763-1820) — Memoirs of Fouche

“In a democracy you can be respected though poor, but don’t count on it.” — Charles Merrill Smith

Till their own dreams at length deceive ’em,
And oft repeating, they believe ’em.

 — Matthew Prior (1664-1721) — Alma, Canto iii, Line 13


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“Poetry is a deal of joy and pain and wonder, with a dash of the dictionary.”

~~ Kahlil Gibran ~~

Fine and Good, Good and Fine

A pig in a poke’s got nothing on me,
cuz I’m as confused as a man can be.
This ol’ world’s got me spinnin’ around
cussin’ and spittin’, a penny for a pound.

Forty ‘leven times since I was a kid, well,
I’ve fallen in love, ‘least too close to tell.
Every damn time, it all went to crap,
Forty ‘leven times I’ve felt like a sap.

‘Course, each time it happens, I forget the last;
why not? I’m havin’ such a blast….
Livin’ in each moment, filled with joie de vivre,
’til it’s all gone away again, nothin’ left up my sleeve.

Don’t want y’all to think I’m sad or blue,
life’s full of sorrow, lots for me, and/or you..
T’other side of that coin, we can be glad,
is joyful love, and that ain’t at all bad.

My road’s been littered with parts o’my heart,
each one colored with trust, which ain’t always smart.
Yet, long as I don’t lose my connection to joy,
I’ll find my own true love, and be a happy boy.

It’s been some kinda fun, even when I’d take a fall,
and doin’ it over makes no sense at all, at all
Day after day, I keep on keepin’ on, as it’s said;
Guess I’ll keep on doin’ that ’til I’m dead.

‘Nuff said….

~~ gigoid, tongue firmly in cheek ~~


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As I searched for the pearls found in section two today, these little gems kept popping up at random intervals… Since they all pertain to one particular subject, all having to do, at least peripherally, with an aspect of religion, or those who play with them; I like to call them “dogma dogs”, a term I coined because it gives the proper feel to how I think they should be viewed…. preferably with gloves and mask in place, to prevent any possible inhalation of their spew….. In other words, all of these take a shot at some portion of the dogs’ anatomy…. Enjoy! I did….

ARCHBISHOP, n.  An ecclesiastical dignitary one point holier than a bishop.

    If I were a jolly archbishop,
    On Fridays I’d eat all the fish up —
    Salmon and flounders and smelts;
    On other days everything else.
                                                              Jodo Rem

 ~~ Ambrose Bierce, “The Devil’s Dictionary” ~~


“Asked what he gained from philosophy, he answered, “To do without being commanded what others do from fear of the laws.” — Diogenes Laertius (c. 200 AD) — Aristotle, xi

“Accurate reckoning — the entrance into the knowledge of all existing things and all obscure secrets.” — Ahmes the Scribe (17th cent. B.C.)

“– How many PRESBYTERIANS does it take to change a light bulb?  None. Lights will go on and off at predestined times.” — Smart Bee

“What is a church? Our honest sexton tells, ‘Tis a tall building, with a tower and bells.” — Crabbe

God’s plan made a hopeful beginning
But man spoiled his chances by sinning.
We trust that the story
Will end in God’s glory,
But at present the other side’s winning.

~~ Smart Bee ~~


“There is not enough love and kindness in the world to permit us to give any of it to imaginary beings.” — Nietzsche

“Writing science fiction for about a penny a word is no way to make a living, If you really want to make a million, the quickest way is to start your own religion.” — L. Ron Hubbard

“Concentrate on th’cute, li’l CARTOON GUYS! Remember the SERIAL NUMBERS!!  Follow the WHIPPLE AVE EXIT!! Have a FREE PEPSI!!  Turn LEFT at th’HOLIDAY INN!! JOIN the CREDIT WORLD!!  MAKE me an OFFER!!!” — Zippy the Pinhead

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Well…. What? Did you really believe that of me? That I would end this the same way it began? Okay, busted…. But, having caught myself in time, I’m able to plead not guilty, and use the opportunity to make my escape…. Besides, it’s done, or, as done as it is going to be, so, there’s little point in dragging this out any further…. On that note…. See y’all tomorrow, ffolkes…. Stay alert, the world needs all the lerts we can find….

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….


A hint of rosemary in the air….

Ffolkes,

“I bid him look into the lives of men as though into a mirror, and from others to take an example for himself.”

~~ Terence (185-159 BC) ~~

~~ Adelphoe, Act iii, Sc. 3, 61, (415.) ~~

August 14 2014 002 (2)

    Being normal isn’t one of my strengths. Never has been, so, I really never miss it, a fact I consider a boon, from what I observe about those who choose to accept it as their option of choice. Now, however, I am approaching fast the farthest end of my life, finding myself in an all-too-familiar sounding situation, where age-related issues become the focus of life, as we try to patch, or support, or remove, or somehow find a fix for all the different parts of our bodies that are showing signs of failing strength, and the approach of the final shut-down sequence….

Euphemisms aside, it’s a pisser, for sure and for certain; in my case, I am also feeling rather insulted…. Here I am, one who followed a path of healthy activity levels all my life, following the advice of doctors, and all the supposed experts on health, who recommend that we be active, eat well, and take care of our bodies by making them work hard…. I played every sport known to the American public, and a few they didn’t know; as soon as I got to college, I started studying martial arts, for which the conditioning goes well beyond what most sports require…. It only makes sense to me; one doesn’t wish to be in a middle of a fight, only to give in to feeling “tired”. The opposing fighter won’t care…. and, it could get you killed or seriously injured…

What all those “experts” forget to mention is the principle of moderation, a principle that overrides all the rest. Moderation is the key to successful living, in almost ALL areas of endeavor; even moderation itself is subject to this, as it is good for us to, occasionally, go beyond our limits, or not reach them. It seems to have a balancing effect necessary to full understanding and utilization; it also tends to soothe those feelings of rebelliousness in all of us, that fights against such restraints, allowing us the inner peace to make good choices as to how to live…. It’s actually simple, and not hard to follow….. it’s just not a well-enough known idea to be of complete use to all….

All of that being said, there isn’t a damn thing to do, at this point, about any of it; it’s now officially too late. All I can do now is deal with my systems as, one by one, they show their characteristics of impending failure… My latest revelation from my doctor indicates I have, as is all too normal, (for me, anyway) become a type 2 diabetic; my blood test over the last 3 years show a distinct climb into the red zone for my blood sugar. So, I now must watch my diet even more closely, start taking a new medication to help regulate the blood sugar, and, worst, I get to puncture a hole in one of my fingers 3 times a day to measure and monitor that blood sugar….. Oh, joy….

It doesn’t seem to help to know I don’t need insulin shots; the pill is now the initial treatment of choice. Having to check my blood 3 times a day is a PITA, which, as my fingers get tired of being poked, will become a chore of duty, which will, possibly, make it okay to maintain, but, will also tend to aggravate the angst, to know it could have been avoided, had I had the wherewithal to make some lifestyle changes a few years ago…. But, with all the confidence of an immortal, I did not, disbelieving that I could ever fall prey to such a NORMAL issue….

HONK!….. That’s my nose going off, by the way…. Oh well, enough whining for one day. I’m gonna go pick on some politicians and preachers for a while; that always makes me feel better…. Having poked my finger for the first time, I am free to do what I wish, and, right now, I wish to Pearl…. So, since I see one of our opportunities right ahead there, at the end of this paragraph, I’ll bid thee a temporary adieu…..

Shall we Pearl?…..

“When I was younger, I could remember anything, whether it had happened or not; but my faculties are decaying now and soon I shall be so I cannot remember any but the things that never happened.  It is sad to go to pieces like this but we all have to do it.” — Mark Twain

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I have decided to put the daily video section here, in section one, from now on…. This way, you can start the morning’s reading, (or evening’s, I don’t care when…. as long as you stop by…. *grin*) while listening to the music I’ll provide…. Those times when I use a movie, or documentary, or other video genre, we’ll see; those may go even further down than section two… I wouldn’t want to write too much in stone; bad habit….. Any who, enjoy this one, as it was specifically designed by the site subscriber to accompany reading…. The daily rant will show up in section two today, and, if all goes according to plan, will be seen there from now on….

Music for Reading; Various Classical Artists/Composers

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“He must needes goe whom the devill doth drive.” ~~ John Heywood (c. 1565) — Proverbes, Part ii, Chap. vii ~~

“As you know, I planned a trip out there for some time, so it fits in very nicely.” ~~ president George Bush, on his trip to LA after the riots ~~

“Nobody goes to bed hungry in America” — R. Reagan

“Politicians aren’t born, they are excreted.” — Cicero

“That it should come to this!” ~~ William Shakespeare (1564-1616), Hamlet — Act i, Sc. 2 ~~


The above five-star pearl is a lead-in group, mostly aimed at those with whom the following discussion is concerned. Below you’ll find two links to articles discussing two separate, but related issues from the news yesterday, found in the UK Guardian’s US edition online. They are both in-depth pieces, with a bit of egregiously egotistic back patting in the first one, but, both are more involved, in-depth, and in tune with the truth than any news organization from the US I can find, with the most important issues made clear, the culpability of the responsible parties made obvious, and the downright evil prevarication by the FBI director laid out for all to see…. An excerpt from each follows the article link, identifiable by quotation marks….

After those first two articles, I’ve also included an excellent column on the same subject by one of the Guardian’s staff opinion writers, named Trevor Timm. He gives a good summary of the exact points I wish to cover in his opening paragraph, which I’ve included as an excerpt, below the link. After that, I’ll have a few comments, and we’ll see how it goes from there…. Hitch up your belts, & make sure your backpacks are secured ffolkes, this could take a while…. but, as Lord Peter has been known to say, “This ain’t a joke, Charles! It’s important. Damn important!”…..

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/oct/16/-sp-revealed-whisper-app-tracking-users

“Whisper acknowledged that it researches the location of specific users it believes are posting newsworthy information, but emphasised it typically uses GPS data.”

“Whisper stressed the IP location data it uses for people who have asked not to be followed is rough and unreliable.”

“We occasionally look at user IP addresses internally to determine very approximate location,” the company said. “User IP addresses may allow very coarse location to be determined to the city, state or country level.”

“It added: “Whisper does not request or store any personally identifiable information from users, therefore there is never a breach of anonymity. From time to time, when a user makes a claim of a newsworthy nature, we review the user’s past activity to help determine veracity.”

“The company strongly rejected any assertion of wrongdoing. “The Guardian’s assumptions that Whisper is gathering information about users and violating user’s privacy are false,” it said. “The privacy of our users is not violated in any of the circumstances suggested in the Guardian story.”

“Four days later, Whisper rewrote large sections of its terms of service and introduced an entirely new privacy policy.”

“Whereas the previous terms and conditions described all of Whisper’s tracking of user location as “voluntary”, the new terms now warn users to “bear in mind that, even if you have disabled location services, we may still determine your city, state, and country location”.

“Since becoming aware that the Guardian planned to publish its story, the anonymous app has also inserted a new line into its privacy policy.”

“It now warns users that turning on the app’s geolocation feature may “allow others, over time, to make a determination as to your identity”.

http://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2014/oct/16/fbi-director-attacks-tech-companies-encryption

“…he recognised their embrace of encryption responded to “perceive[d]” market pressures in the wake of Snowden’s disclosures. But Comey suggested that end-to-end mobile device encryption amounted to a safe haven for criminals.”

“Are we no longer a country that is passionate both about the rule of law and about their being no zones in this country beyond the reach of that rule of law? Have we become so mistrustful of government and law enforcement in particular that we are willing to let bad guys walk away, willing to leave victims in search of justice?” he said.”

“Comey acknowledged that the Snowden disclosures caused “justifiable surprise” among the public about the breadth of government surveillance, but hoped to mitigate it through greater transparency and advocacy.”

“Yet the FBI keeps significant aspects of its surveillance reach hidden even from government oversight bodies. Intelligence officials said in a June letter to a US senator that the FBI does not tally how often it searches “through NSA’s vast hoards of international communications, without warrants, for Americans’ identifying information.”

“Comey frequently described himself as being technologically unprepared to offer specific solutions, and said he meant to begin a conversation, even at the risk of putting American tech companies at a competitive disadvantage.”

“Where we may get is to a place where the US, through its Congress, says, ‘You know what, we need to force this on American companies,’ and maybe they’ll take a hit. Someone in some other country will say, ‘Ah, we sell a phone that even with lawful authority people can’t get into.’ But that we as a society are willing to have American companies take that hit. That’s why we have to have this conversation,” Comey said”

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/oct/17/government-internet-backdoor-surveillance-fbi

“FBI director James Comey wants a US government-mandated backdoor into your iPhone and your Google account. But Comey doesn’t want to call his proposed privacy invasion a backdoor. He doesn’t understand how it would work. And he expects everyone who has been horrified by the NSA’s mass surveillance to just sit back, weaken their personal security and trust that the government will never abuse it.”

“Comey also claimed on Thursday that the “Post-Snowden pendulum” needs to swing back in favor of the government, neglecting to mention Congress has passed literally zero laws reigning in government surveillance. In fact, the main reason the major tech companies are pushing forward with encryption is because the government refuses to follow the will of the people and curtail the NSA’s powers at all. If Comey wanted a careful debate about the right balance of privacy and security before decisions like Apple’s are made, like he also said on Thursday night, maybe he should’ve advocated for that when the NSA was massively expanding their powers for years in complete secrecy.”

“Twitter tweet October 16, 2014: “Comey’s right: Deployment of strong crypto should be preceded by thoughtful debate. Which we had & correctly resolved 15 years ago.— Julian Sanchez (@normative)”

“So while we break out the world’s smallest violin as Jim Comey complains about the “Post-Snowden pendulum”, remember: the US government, through its own secret actions, brought this on themselves.”


I can’t say, with any degree of accuracy, but, I’m pretty sure I’ve never heard such a load of pure bullshit, straight from the bull’s butt, in a very, very long time…. When Richard Nixon raised his peace sign fingers, and stated, “I am not a crook.”, was probably the last time…. I swear, this man, this Comey, who heads up the FBI, obviously has the lowest opinion of the American public’s intelligence of almost anyone I’ve ever seen…. The demon-spawn from hell, Newt Gargoyle, or Gribble, or Grinch, Grngich, or whatever his weird-ass name was, came close on a regular basis, as did that ghoul, Dick Cheney, but, this Über-cop, this gestapo at the head of our nation’s largest domestic police force has, I believe. taken the cake….

Moreover, he implies that anyone who doesn’t support his, and the government’s, grab for power over every aspect of our lives is unpatriotic, a cowardly enemy of American principles, which, according to HIM, start (and, by implication, end…) with submissive respect for the “rule of law”, suggesting that the American public should feel privileged to allow them to have access to ALL of their private information…. Of course, the implied insult here is that only criminals and other unsavory characters should have something to hide from them, and their oh-so-perfect moral position….

What a crock of shit! I can’t say it any plainer than that…. and, I’ve probably said enough by now, anyway…. I’ll leave you with one last wake-up pearl, to think about when you’re assigning blame for what is happening in today’s world….. The FBI director, in his remarks, asks what he considers a rhetorical question, to wit:

“Have we become so mistrustful of government and law enforcement in particular that we are willing to let bad guys walk away, willing to leave victims in search of justice?”

I can only answer with a resounding “Yes, we have! We have lost ALL trust in the police. and the government, with good reason. I wouldn’t trust you to tell me the correct time!”

Well, I might not say that last part to his face, maybe, but, I can assure you, I’d want to, very badly, and would have to exert significant effort of will to refrain from doing so…. though, why I would bother, I don’t know…..

“Who’s the more foolish? The fool or the fool who follows him?” — Obi-Wan Kenobi, “Star Wars”


I was going to leave it at that, but, as I finished, I received an email from EFF, the Electronic Frontier Foundation, a non-profit activism organization made up of people, like me, and, hopefully, y’all, who are concerned with keeping the internet free of corporate influence and government oppression, to guarantee the open, free interchange of ideas and communication that characterizes how it is supposed to be, as intended by those who created it…. They are one of the entities who brought suit against the government about this issue, in a suit which is now about to be heard by the Supreme Court, along with several others they have supported, or helped to organize…

Below, I have included three links to articles on their home site, which speak to the information and issues of which we spoke above in this section. Each article clearly explains how the government and other entities are trying to subvert the internet, making it a tool for oppression, rather than a tool for expanding human knowledge and culture…. These explain how the government, and their myrmidons, the police, are working to take away the usefulness of having such a means to spread knowledge, wanting instead to keep it for their own use, which involves the control over our lives they so desperately desire….

Good info, ffolkes, well researched and written, very clearly presented…. I’ve donated to this one, which I don’t do, as a rule, but, they’re working hard to protect US, that is, YOU and ME, so, they deserve my support…. If nothing else, it will give you an idea of how the situation stands today….

https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2014/10/even-golden-key-can-be-stolen-thieves-simple-facts-apples-encryption-decision

https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2014/09/computercop-dangerous-internet-safety-software-hundreds-police-agencies

http://www.wired.com/2014/10/nsa-mind-bender-wont-tell-info-already-leaked-media/

“The best way to lose freedom is not to do anything.” — Smart Bee

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Once again, to avoid any possible litigation over any blame associated with what I write, we’ll stick to my stuff….. It may not come up to the relative value of one of the classics, but, it will do for our purposes…. I do hope you enjoy it…. that’s something, I guess….

Dreaming, I wait….

In the most patient moments of rationality
kindness flows smoothly in a special milieu,
fallow thoughts speed first from equality
to give no anxious fever, anger to eschew.

Indignant mothers and step-sons in-law
shall fade simply from brilliant to grey,
intoning ritual dogma, fresh, avid, and raw,
falling, falling, in massive pastoral disarray.

Safety lives not, save brightly in ignorant bliss,
it follows us all, silent and infinitely frail,
foremost too often, soft as a virgin kiss,
alive, always eager, willing, and pale.

Intimate knowledge finds only the bold few
with courage and virtue to gift, unbidden.
No solemn royal version may pass in review,
true love for man, never to remain unhidden.

Sweet feathers of Emily’s hope uplift,
calm, drowsy episodes bursting with light,
With final glad cries we set ourselves adrift,
swimming in the oceans of natural delight.

When sorrow is banished, in ages yet to come,
roots solidly anchored, cold and remote,
Ample supplies of kindness sit silent and dumb,
and the old stranger shrugs on his faded coat.

Dreaming, then, I wait with shadows in the night
aspiring to inspire, a message from the muse’s heart
Never forgotten images, framed in color bright,
tempt me only, grieving, steeped in serenity’s arcane art…..

~~ gigoid ~~

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George Carlin. What can I possibly add to all that has been said about this man….  His life spanned the period of time from May 12, 1937 to June 22, 2008…. Even though he lived to the age of 70, in my opinion, he shall ever remains an example of “only the good die young”. He WAS young, even at 70, for, right up to the day he died, his mind looked at the world with a child’s eyes, in a fresh, uncluttered way that allowed him to see through every piece of bullshit the world threw up…. and, as my blogs indicate, that is a LOT of bullshit….

George also had a unique way of making us laugh about all the bad things in life, making them, if not more comfortable, at least more palatable, thus giving us the chance at solving some of them…. I miss his wit, and his vision, which saw through every politician and preacher in the world, no matter what their allegiance… For that alone, I shall always honor his memory, and will always consider him my role model for literary activism, as far as possible for an old curmudgeon with too much time on his hands….

Why, you may ask, are we having another video today? Well, it’s simple…. Smart Bee is on hiatus, for a day or three; it’s been bad, and I had to punish it. For a while, I’ll try to replace any old-school pearls you may have found here in section five with whatever comes to mind…. and, George came to mind first…. Enjoy, ffolkes…. Use the link to find a great many You Tubes, with George, and other comedians, as well…


George Denis Patrick Carlin
 

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The process of creating these little gems has grown to resemble nothing so much as Joseph’s Coat of Many Colors; new methods, tacked up right alongside old ones, or patched over them, give it that apocalyptic look so fashionable now; I couldn’t be prouder if I had tried to make it look that way…. It’s also, at least for today, done, which is my favorite kind of Pearl….

Okay, brain gone, nothing left to use… Must go now, find new parts…. 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….

 

Oliver twisted reality until it screamed….

Ffolkes,

As I approach the creation of yet another day’s Pearl of Virtual Wisdom, I find myself, once again, torn completely into mental shreds, by my self-inflected, arguably insane adherence to this chosen duty…. I’ve been sitting here in front of the computer screen, staring blankly at the vast whiteness, hoping beyond hope to find some small bit of inspiration, or some fantastic, interesting direction to take that will possibly stimulate what little creative talent I possess, for close to 55 minutes now, and this bit of whiny confession is the best I’ve been able to come up with…. Pathetic….

It almost makes me want to go back to bed, and try again later…. That would probably be a mistake, though, as I find myself reluctant to get any further away from the routine I’ve established in the past three years or so; my experience is, if I don’t get this done as my first task of the day, the rest of it is all broken up, confused, and susceptible to all sorts of Murphyish intervention….. more so even than the customary number of pokes he takes at me. Since I don’t feel like dealing with any of his shenanigans just now, we’ll keep plugging away at this, and hope for the best…..

That being said, it might be best to jump into the rest of today’s effort right away; that might throw Murphy off, and certainly couldn’t hurt what is happening here, as there’s NOTHING happening in this section, at least, not so far. Other than a bit of minor whining, and some off-the-wall discussion of mundane matters of routine, with some, no doubt, shaky speculation about reality thrown in, we haven’t managed to create anything at all…. well, three paragraphs of inanity, but, that, I believe, won’t even register on any sensors, much less count toward any available prizes….

Thus, therefore, and hence, we’ll just abandon ship again, to head off into the hinterlands of the pearl beds with our usual panache; the pearl beds are to be found, of course, somewhere out there in the massive ocean of knowledge that is the world wide web…. which I’m trying to enjoy, as the deadline approaches for the takeover of the Net by corporate interests, who want to use it as their own cash cow….. Face it, ffolkes, AT&T, Verizon, Comcast, and the other communication giants aren’t going to rest until they have us all under the gun, with the internet as their hostage…. Have you called or emailed the FCC yet to register your opposition to that?…. If not, please do so…. and call your Congressman, too….

There, you’ve also been treated to an impromptu mini-rant; that makes this intro more than merely complete. It makes it legal, as you well know, freeing us to get on with the rest of this mess…. By mess, of course, I refer to the entire process, AND the end result, which, as always, remains somewhat amorphously unpredictable to either describe or contain in one small area…. That’s why we have three sections, after all…. Bet that one slipped by you, didn’t it? I knew it…. This isn’t as easy, or as disorganized as it may seem to the casual observer, so, take heed, and remember to stand back when I throw this switch, right here….

Shall we Pearl?….

“I drank WHAT???????” — Socrates (470?-399 B.C.)

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

“A group of the unwilling, composed of the unfit, to do the unnecessary for the unaware in an untidy manner at an untimely moment employing unseemly tactics for the uninformed. Ah, give me a chance at that committee and we can really go nowhere fast and get there before most people even know that we left. This is nothing more than the formula for good government, or it seems that way from what I have been able to observe so far in this life.” — Smart bee

I tried to find out who first said this, but, the one place Google found it listed it several times as a related quote to others, with no attribution given on any of those occasions…. so, Smart Bee gets the credit, for the time being…. It’s here, as you can probably guess, to act as a prelude to a rant….. a phrase which sounds like a fairly good title for a book, or an essay, or, I’ve got it!…. a movie…. ( See Ava Gardner and Cary Grant, starring in the classic epic, “Prelude to a Rant”….) Well, okay, maybe not…. but, it certainly works for one of our protracted discussions about our Beloved Ruling Class, and all they do to, er, for us….

However, I’m not in the mood for one of MY rants; what I’m in the mood for is a Carlinesque rant, a stand-up routine like the ones George used to go through on stage, when he would spend about five minutes straight, talking really fast, New York style, poking sharp, pointed concepts at the leaders of society, barbs so sharp, you could see the fat cats, politicians, preachers, and pundits of every variety, blushing, wincing and bleeding…. Now, if I only had his talent, I’d be set…. I can be funny, on occasion, when I stumble into it; sadly, my skill at that is still a bit underdeveloped for my standards. But, approaching Carlin’s level of genius is out of the question, at least, at this point….

So, we’ll go old-school, using parameters for choosing our pearls that show some teeth, and have the distinct possibility of causing blood loss…. Don’t fret, they can afford to bleed off some; they’re all vampires anyway, and don’t really NEED the blood…. Oh wait, that’s backwards, isn’t it? Okay, so fuck it, I don’t care anyway…. let ’em bleed out, I say, the assholes…. Let’s see if I can make my disgust with government, and those who engage in any form of it, any plainer than that….

“Artificial hearts are nothing new. Politicians have had them for years.” — Mack McGinnis

Voter’s Block: The attempt, however futile, to register dissent with the current political system by simply not voting. — Douglas Coupland, Generation X

“I feel like I am sharing a “CORN-DOG” with NIKITA KHRUSCHEV..” — Zippy the Pinhead

“Every actual State is corrupt.  Good men must not obey laws too well.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), “Politics”

“What would this country be without this great land of ours?” — Ronald W. Reagan, philosopher

“If an ass goes traveling he will not come home a horse.” — Thomas Fuller

This is the way the world ends,
This is the way the world ends,
This is the way the world ends,
Not with a bang but with a whimper.

 — T. S. Eliot, “The Hollow Men”


Okay, so, it’s a bit esoteric, if not completely abstract, but, I like the way it chortles, gleefully, in anticipation of causing offense to some poor sap in elected office….

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

Here is a poem I wrote in September of 2012, when I was in the throes of depression, engendered in major part by the grinding of the wheels of bureaucracy…. I’m not entirely sure why, but, it seems to feel like the right poem for today…. I hope you enjoy it….

A Failure to Germinate

Marking the days in elements of sad disarray
only holds me thrall, as I laugh while I may.
With cold, hard hands so impatient and cruel
pulling me to this vale of tears, a pathetic old fool.

Feelings sit silent, cast in shadows and light
breaking forth to implicate such vengeful might.
Just below the surface they patiently hide
to sally forth bravely, colors bright as they ride.

Tears and pain transform valued assets in hand
while comfort and serenity retreat to a far land.
Bold, bright patterns of hope garnish my ruinous state
until reality enters, full of disdainful portions of hate.

I sort out the illustrious measures of vision gone mild
only to find them transformed, now vicious and wild.
In my deepest desires I find myself calloused and cold
with faithless advocates whose souls have been sold.

My search finds little to support any hope of relief
far too much time has passed to bolster such belief.
The sad becomes real, and real becomes unfounded
until flights of such fancy are all dead, and grounded.

Nature has informed me of the newly hatched crime
that reality has boasted of proudly, time after time.
The last answer we think of is always the best
as we come to terms with fate, our hope at rest.

~~ gigoid ~~

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“Waste not the remnant of thy life in those imaginations touching other folk, whereby thou contributest not to the common weal.” — Marcus Aurelius Antoninus (121-180 AD) — Meditations, iii, 4

I end up using a lot of quotes from Marcus Aurelius Antoninus, all of which seem, to me, to be pretty well-reasoned, as well as insightful re: human nature, and ethical/moral behavior….. In fact, I find there are as many, or more, insightful, reasoned philosophers who lived before Christ was born, (not that I care that much, but, it’s the point in time our society has agreed upon to use as the basis for our calendar, thus making it the obvious, most convenient, and expedient, choice as a marker, in order to organize people into their time periods for reference and identification), as there are who have lived in the time since then…. Mathematics says there HAS to be more of them in modern society, because there are more people alive, but, somehow, the percentages don’t seem to fit that preconception….

Marcus Aurelius, Socrates, Plato, Plutarch, Aristotle, Cato, the Elder and the Younger, Gautama Buddha, Lao Tzu, Confucius, and a  veritable host of others, from all cultures in the world, passed their wisdom to us throughout the ages, and have always seemed to me to be superior in their reasoning to any of the more modern philosophers to whom I’ve been exposed….. an opinion you will see reflected in the quotes you see here…. I have no apology for that, and don’t plan to change it, so, I hope y’all enjoy them, because they’re not going away…. In fact, I’m going to put together a pearl with parameters limiting it to quotes over 1500 years old…. I would suggest you enjoy it, but, it’s not necessary with such classical wisdom to offer….

“Before enlightenment, one carries water and chops wood. After enlightenment, one carries water and chops wood.” — Zen Proverb

“Whatever you can lose, you should reckon of no account.” — Publius Syrus (42 BC) — Maxim 191

“…for the most part happiness consists in being willing to be what you are.” — Erasmus

“As surgeons keep their instruments and knives always at hand for cases requiring immediate treatment, so shouldst thou have thy thoughts ready to understand things divine and human, remembering in thy every act, even the smallest, how close is the bond that unites the two.” — Marcus Aurelius Antoninus (121-180 AD) — Meditations, iii, 13

“Nothing made the horse so fat as the king’s eye.” — Plutarch (46-120 AD) — Of the Training of Children

“He is a fool who lets slip a bird in the hand for a bird in the bush.” — Plutarch (46-120 AD) — Of Garrulity

“The trouble with Nixon is that he’s a serious politics junkie. He’s totally hooked… and like any other junkie, he’s a bummer to have around: especially as President.” — Hunter S. Thompson (b. 1939), journalist — The Great Shark Hunt, Jacket Copy for Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (1979)

(Oops! Sorry, that slipped in there due to appending to the clipboard, rather than overwriting…. but, it’s kinda cool, I think, so, it can stay…. just ignore it after reading, and go on to the final pearl, which you see in its designated place, right down there on the line below this….)

“It behooves a prudent person to make trial of everything before arms.” — Terence (185-159 BC) — Act iv, Sc. 7, 19, (789.)

Since we were so rudely interrupted by Hunter’s oh-so-poignant observation of reality, I’ll add one more, to show that the ancients possessed as subtle a sense of humor as any modern pundit, for sure and for certain….

“Anaximander used to assert that the primary cause of all things was the Infinite,–not defining exactly whether he meant air or water or anything else.” — Diogenes Laertius (c. 200 AD) — Anaximander, ii

Well, a bit disjointed, but, it works for me…. So be it…. gigoid has spoken

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

Well, I don’t know about y’all, but, I needed that…. or, more accurately, I needed to get that out of my head…. Since it is, I think it would be prudent of me to just take my leave now, to avoid any potential unpleasantness from Murphy, or folks out there who might take offense at one of my little shots at politics, or, more commonly, religion, such as it is…. Nevertheless, I will be back tomorrow, unless the Sun goes dark…. See ya, ffolkes…. Oh, and, I promise, the Wise Old Pine Cone will return soon….

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

The White Rabbit’s waistcoat won’t fit….

Ffolkes,

As I closed my front door early this morning, on the way out to drive to work, a large white rabbit, dressed, oddly enough, in a gentleman’s morning attire, complete with, waistcoat, pince nez, and a huge watch chain hanging from the pocket, ran quickly past me, muttering what sounded like imprecations indicative of great agitation…. Well, being familiar with Lewis Carroll, and his pederasty fantasy child, I DIDN’T give chase, not having the time, or the slightest  inclination to attend any tea parties, experiment with mushrooms, or wage any battles of wit with a Cat, especially one as curmudgeonly as the Cheshire who gave Alice all that lip and grief….

Nor, as I’m sure you are aware, did I really see any rabbits this morning…. The first clue it was all fiction was in the first line, when I said I was driving to work…. which is, as you may know, something I no longer do for anyone but myself…. The second was the waistcoat, which, as you may have noted, was mentioned in today’s title, and as such, was NOT expected to be in the body of work today…. There are times, and this is one of them, when I suspect this process is not entirely under my control…. which begs the question, who’s driving this bus of bozos?….

The answer, of course, is that NOBODY is driving the bus, ffolkes…. I’ve given up, and nobody else can be persuaded to take up the gauntlet; I’ve even tried employment agencies, but, after a few stories from the few they’ve sent over got back to them, it’s been hard to find anyone willing to take it on…. I mean, it’s not like it’s a HARD job; it’s just the strangeness that gets to them, I suppose…. Well, that, and the uniforms; I shouldn’t have gone for the one with the epaulets on the shoulder; everyone thinks they look ridiculous, and hates to wear them….

Of course, I’ve had to let everyone go anyway, what with the recession and all. Even though the economy is on the mend, or so they say, (I think they really have no clue about what will actually happen; they just play the odds and guess…. like we all do since Cassandra died….), if I try to pay a living wage, it eats into my meager profits…. which are also non-existent…. All of which is why it’s a dead giveaway for me to say I’m about to drive off to work…. Hard to do with no car, and no job…

All of the above, of course, is just another distraction, a load of bilge-water, best if left to its own devices lest the smell get into your clothing…. I’m up quite late, for me, and suffering again from the usual complement of painful joints, hips, and the concomitant deleterious effect on my energy, and motivation…. I have to bust through the reluctance to move at all, in order to get past the point where it holds me down, or up, whichever direction I’m going at the time…. Then, well, let’s not get any more into that; it’s just encouraging me to whine….

Instead, I’m going to get on with what we have in store for today, whatever that might be…. Once again, your guess is as good as mine, as to what that may be, or look like…. So, we’ll use trusty method #4, and get on with it….

Shall we Pearl?….

“Acquittal of the guilty damns the judge.” — Horace

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“Do not be angry with me if I tell you the truth.” — Socrates (470?-399 B.C.)

Yarrr! Avast, ye land lubbers! Stand your ground, and pay heed!….

The pirate phenomenon came to my town this weekend, in the format of a festival…. A consumer’s delight, where about a hundred or so craft, food, & beverage vendors, singing and musical groups, stage production companies, and otherwise normal folks get together dressed up like pirates, talking like pirates, and generally celebrating the pirate culture, such as it was….. It’s all pretty romanticized, considering the whole scenario of piracy as a way of life; all of the cool, frosty stuff is kept, and all the pain, misery, abuse, and poverty that went along with most of it is ignored….

The historical period when piracy on the high seas was popular, back a few hundred years, was a lot more brutal on the general public than most folks realize, but, hey, that’s America for you…. just look at the parts you want to see, and ignore what you don’t…. They did have their priorities straight, though…. The ATM machines were quite prominent, in three locations for the consumer’s convenience, set up by the food & beer area, and in the first row of craft & clothing vendors….

This all sounds a bit curmudgeonly, of course, which is a result of my thoughts AFTER attending…. I actually had a good time, without spending a fortune, and had some decent noms (food, for those of you not current on slang….)….. I had a sausage roll, Scottish style, just as greasy as the one I had in Scotland, and the shepherd’s pie looked pretty good, too…. Sadly, the only liquor available, other than beer, was rum, which does NOT agree with me at all, due to an unfortunate incident in college, where a quart of rum and I had some issues…. I still can’t smell the stuff without a nose curl….

“And here you thought your money was going to waste. Well, a Federal Appeals Court has ordered the FDA to determine whether drugs proposed for Lethal Injection executions are “safe and effective!” — Smart Bee

The festival is one of those uniquely American deals, a consumer celebration designed to bring tourist dollars into a town that is suffering badly from the economic shenanigans of the corporate elite, who have been busily raping the American economy since the days of Ronald Raygun and his band of banker, ex-USC grad buddies, who managed to spew so much BS around, people began to think it didn’t stink…..

I mean, how else can you explain any reasonable, rational person falling for the “trickle down” theory of economics, otherwise known as Reaganomics, a not-so-hidden attempt at outright theft by the government, if ever one was seen? Only sheer, bald-faced lying could have carried that one off…. But, then, remember some of Ronnie’s OTHER moments of truth?…. Such as….

“Trees make more smog than cars.” — R. Reagan

Any who, that’s all over now, except, of course, for the hundred or so years it will take to recover from it…. In the meantime, we have these kinds of distractions to keep us busy, and having fun doing stuff that makes no reasonable sense at all, spending massive amounts of time and money to pursue a lifestyle so hard and so insane, it no longer exists anywhere but Hollywood…. But, as the pictures show, it’s fun, for all ages, and there are a lot of interesting things to see and do….. Here are some pictures that will give an idea of the day…. Enjoy!….

“Like so many Americans, she was trying to construct a life that made sense from things she found in gift shops.” — Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.

June 13-15 2014 005“Somewhere between real and real real.” — Senator Dan Quayle pinpointing their location to reporters — aboard the Quayle campaign plane. — (reported in Wall Street Journal, 10/21/88)

June 13-15 2014 007Just WHAT is that octopus doing with that mast?…..

June 13-15 2014 010Spare change, anyone?…..

June 13-15 2014 013“Oh, God, look at that!”…..

June 13-15 2014 015A little tough to romanticize this….. though one does wonder how the bear fits into the story, eh?….

June 13-15 2014 017Some people have WAY too much time, and money, on their hands….

syphilisAn indicator of how strange and perverted the human race is…. This lovely character was the most popular costumed figure wandering the festival grounds, with just about every other person encountered wanting their picture taken with him….

Well there you have it ffolkes, my day hanging out with a segment of America’s most gullible consumers….. It must be the cynic in me that sees not only the romantic side of the whole phenomenon, but, its uglier, less acknowledged economic factors….. But, hey, I found a great deal on a really good dirk, in case I ever want to wear my kilt and heraldry badges….

“Cynicism is disillusioned idealism.” — Harry Kemelman

Let’s go on, shall we?….

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The perfect poem to go along with the odd little rant in section one, here is the first stanza of T.S. Eliot’s epic poem, The Waste Land…. I have provided a link to a site where you can read the rest of the poem, which is quite long, but well worth the time and effort to peruse…. Enjoy!….

http://www.poetryfoundation.org/poem/176735

The Waste Land

FOR EZRA POUND
IL MIGLIOR FABBRO

I. The Burial of the Dead

  April is the cruellest month, breeding
Lilacs out of the dead land, mixing
Memory and desire, stirring
Dull roots with spring rain.
Winter kept us warm, covering
Earth in forgetful snow, feeding
A little life with dried tubers.
Summer surprised us, coming over the Starnbergersee
With a shower of rain; we stopped in the colonnade,
And went on in sunlight, into the Hofgarten,
And drank coffee, and talked for an hour.
Bin gar keine Russin, stamm’ aus Litauen, echt deutsch.
And when we were children, staying at the arch-duke’s,
My cousin’s, he took me out on a sled,
And I was frightened. He said, Marie,
Marie, hold on tight. And down we went.
In the mountains, there you feel free.
I read, much of the night, and go south in the winter.

~~ T. S. Eliot ~~

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Okay, I’ve made it this far, which is a surprise to me…. Soon after beginning, some severe arthritic hip pain began to throb in my lower back, and has resisted all attempts to curtail its advance…. Hence, this will be old-school, and just about as quick a pearl as ever was…. I hope….

“I might repeat to myself, slowly and soothingly, a list of quotations beautiful from minds profound; if I can remember any of the damn things.” — Dorothy Parker, The Portable, 1944

It is the heart afraid of breaking
that never learns to dance.
It is the dream afraid of waking
that never takes a chance.
It is the one who won’t be taken
who cannot seem to give.
And the soul afraid of dying
that never learns to live.

 — Bette Midler, The Rose


“Be of good cheer,” said Diogenes; “I see land.” — Diogenes Laertius (c. 200 AD) — Diogenes, vi

“If you tell the truth you don’t have to remember anything.” — Mark Twain

Teach him how to live,
And, oh still harder lesson! how to die.

— Beilby Porteus (1731-1808) — Death, Line 316

“If you would know a man, observe how your cat treats him.” — Smart Bee

“If you can see a thing whole… it seems that it’s always beautiful. Planets, lives…But close up, a world’s all dirt and rocks. And day to day, life’s a hard job, you get tired, you lose the pattern. You need distance, interval. The way to see how beautiful the earth is, is to see it as the moon. The way to see how beautiful a life is, is to see it from the vantage point of death.” — Ursula K. Le Guin, Dispossessed

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There it is, such as it is…. I’m going to go consume massive quantities of mind-numbing, obliviating drugs, & then take another look at the day in a few hours, once my attitude has been adjusted…. See y’all tomorrow, ffolkes, if they don’t catch me….

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

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