~~ Bertrand Russell ~~
What vivid, beautiful morning glories! (Well, I THINK they’re morning glories; if not, can a gardener tell me what they are? I’m clueless about plant ID’s….) I’m happy with this shot, simple as it is, because of the colors that came through in the final result…. gorgeous plant, it was, and the only pictures I managed to get on that walk, were of it, and its flowers…. Out of the four or six shots I took, (shaky hands, couldn’t get one centered…. I was on my way to the magic cream shop, in dire need of their products….), this one, and a study of the whole plant, which was in a yard next to a store, were lovely enough to use for today, and tomorrow’s Pearl…. sufficient reward for the misery I had to endure to get to the store….
And, you are NOT going to believe this one…. Last night, I slept (yes, slept… Me, gigoid, sleeping…. quite a concept, eh?) for ten hours, straight and solid, with only two awakenings, to take the scheduled opiate…. I feel GREAT! (Well, I’m discounting the hips and shoulder, which are in their standard state, but, a bit of the ol’ magical topical cream, and I’m good to go…. You may have already noticed how my mood is at a level of, oh, I’d say, a good three steps from usual…. I really don’t know what to do with it; I haven’t suffered this much ‘good will toward men’ in ages…. Maybe I should go out tonight, & try my luck at meeting somebody new…. Nah, I’ll just enjoy the glow….
Besides, by 10 AM, if the world’s routine hasn’t altered significantly, my arthritis should be kicking in, and I’ll be back to the steeplechase, running as slowly as I can, chasing after the pain, trying to knock it down far enough to stop, if nothing else, the whimpering, which tend to embarrass me, even though nobody can hear me when I cry out…. SIGH…. It’s been a tough week, if you couldn’t tell….
Enough whining, though, I feel too good to be pessimistic about how long it will last… I’ll just take advantage of the moment, and enjoy feeling relatively normal, at least for a while…. Plus, look, it gave me enough to fill in this space, which means we can use one of the emergency release mechanisms we have in place, to get us out of here, and onward into the rest of today’s mess, er, missive… Whattyathink, eh? Shall we use #4? It IS sitting right there, ready…. Okay, we’ll do that….
Shall we Pearl?
” — I’d love to, but… I have to study for a blood test.” — 79 of 101 Easy Ways To Say NO
“Distrust all in whom the impulse to punish is powerful.” — Nietzsche, “Thus Spake Zarathustra”
I’ve been writing a lot recently on this subject; one reason makes itself obvious today, or, more accurately, was demonstrated yesterday, as several stories in the news caught my attention, stories that demonstrate the ubiquitous seriousness of the issue, that of the militarization of the police, with the concomitant result, and motivating factor, of the elimination of the basic rights as covered in the original US Bill of Rights, the first ten amendments to the US Constitution…. If you think, even for a moment, that you have all those rights by law, in today’s world, then, ffolkes, and, folks….. y’all just aren’t paying close enough attention to what is happening, right in front of you….
In support of that obviously arguable contention, I offer the following discussion, with two appropriate expressions as a preface:
“No sheath shall hold what finds its home in flesh.” — Proverb
“The law hath not been dead, though it hath slept.” — William Shakespeare (1564-1616), Measure for Measure — Act ii, Sc. 2
Oh…. I get it now…. We, the citizens, are now allowed to protest, without fear of arrest by overzealous police forces, UNLESS we are “disruptive to traffic”, or refrain from “blocking streets”, as a way to express our grievances, to petition the government for redress of those grievances… Sounds to me like the same line of reasoning used by the large communication companies, such as Verizon, or AT&T, (as well as just about ALL companies these days…. they all saw how well it worked for the big guys, & jumped right on that wagon…), who make it impossible to even SPEAK to an actual live person, to try to address any issues of customer service….
They all say their primary goal is customer satisfaction, or, in the case of the police, the protection of the rights of the public, but, have arranged matters (i.e., passed laws…) that enable them to refuse to speak, or listen to anyone who wishes to obtain any such thing…. Same same attitude, in my book…. They don’t want to talk to us, and they don’t want to listen to any complaints about that, or about anything else…. so, they’ve made it damn near impossible to exercise the right we were allegedly guaranteed by the sacrifices of our ancestors….
“The simple rights, the civil liberties from generations of struggle must not be just fine words for patriotic holidays, words we subvert on weekdays, but living, honored rules of conduct amongst us…I’m glad the American Civil Liberties Union gets indignant, and I hope this will always be so.” — Senator Adlai E. Stevenson
(Obviously, by the evidence of this, and other quotes from the good Senator, and, because I was around to watch the rest of the established incumbent politicians of the era, who were, ostensibly, his peers, deliberately and ruthlessly destroy his credibility, and his reputation, with lies, innuendo, and political skulduggery, thus effectively shutting him up, and preventing him from causing any real harm to them, or their incumbency, it’s clear, to me, and to many others, Adlai was one of the rare exceptions to the established rule….)
According to this one, the officer involved was acting “within policy”…. So, by that standard, it’s okay, policy-wise, to profile, to NOT call for backup, to use intimidation as a method of controlling a situation, and to assume that the officer saying, “Sorry” for being a total asshole, is sufficient reason to ‘overlook’ his behavior from the police’s obviously expert, objective viewpoint….. Right…..
“If our behavior is strict, we do not need fun!” — Zippy the Pinhead
Doesn’t this bother anyone else, but me? Why is it okay for the police to act like this, without any consequences at all for the officer involved, and the department that encourages this sort of asininity? Can ANYONE explain this to me, any way at all? I’m pretty smart, and will be able to understand just about anything that makes any sense, from any objective standpoint, based on a full understanding of the intent of the founders of the Constitution when they created that document, and a pretty extensive knowledge of human nature, so, any sort of evidence will do….
“Pluck out the heart of my mystery.” — William Shakespeare (1564-1616), Hamlet — Act iii, Sc. 2
I’m willing to bet, some serious money, that there is no one who will, or can, respond to those questions, at least, not in any way that will lessen the responsibility for immoral, unethical, and illegal actions of the policeman, and the department that echoes the WRONG attitudes of almost every other force in this country, and all over the world…. I say this because I’ve looked for any such evidence, already, many times, and have yet to find anything to alter the way I look at it, not by the analysis of the available FACTUAL evidence….
Ever since the middle of the nineteenth century, the government of this country, (and, by that, I am including all three branches, which are supposed to balance each other’s powers, thereby protecting us, the People….) has been under the influence and control of corporate interests, which translates as the monied elite, who have, and will protect viciously, all the “legal” rights they now possess, rights to the control of almost ALL the resources available to society…. With this influence, hard-won by the bribing of a major Federal Court judge in the mid-1800’s, some legal rulings were made, rulings that defined corporations as “persons”, with the legal rights of a person, and, more, providing a legal precedent for future flunkies, er, judges to fall back on….
PRECEDENT, n. In Law, a previous decision, rule or practice which, in the absence of a definite statute, has whatever force and authority a Judge may choose to give it, thereby greatly simplifying his task of doing as he pleases. As there are precedents for everything, he has only to ignore those that make against his interest and accentuate those in the line of his desire. Invention of the precedent elevates the trial-at-law from the low estate of a fortuitous ordeal to the noble attitude of a dirigible arbitrament.” — Ambrose Bierce, “The Devil’s Dictionary”
This opened the door to other rulings, all of which, over the years, based on the original decision, and, all of which, essentially, give more and more of the rights we flesh and blood citizens have to those “corporate persons”, such that, now, corporations not only have MORE rights than any single citizen, composed of mere flesh and blood, but, have extended their control, using the same basic method of bribery, to the other two branches….. They did so in Congress, by convincing that august body to vote itself the right to make laws that were separate from those that were Constitutional, thereby making them not subject to the same restrictions that now define that document…. In other words, they voted themselves the keys to the treasury….
(Some time, if you get a chance, check out the health plan that the members of Congress, and other Federal government elected officials, are set up with when they get elected, along with their retirement plans…. You will be shocked at what they have given themselves over the years, all without even notifying any of the public what was going on…. Most of the American public is not even AWARE that a member of Congress, when they leave that august body, get to keep their health plan (much better than any available to the public, more extensive coverage, and free of any out of pocket cost to them….), AND their congressional salary, now in the HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS range….. FOR THE REST OF THEIR LIVES….. even if only elected to one term…. Pretty good deal they’ve handed themselves, eh, what?….. If you are ANYTHING like me, it will convince you to go buy a gun, and to use it…..)
The Executive Branch, while attempting to maintain the appearance of independence and proper assumption of its Constitutional duty, fell in with those same shadowy corporate snakeheads on Wall Street, and came up with the simple concept of “Executive privilege”, giving themselves the power to make laws, bypassing Congress, and, thus, the people, altogether…. Cute, eh? And, clever, too, for making it all seem as if the White House, Congress, and the Courts, were, and are, all doing their jobs, providing balance to the powers of government…. when, in fact, the people of this country have NO ONE representing their interests, in any level, in any branch of our government….
There are 455 very rich, white men, (with a very few exceptions to that particular description….) who determine the course of life in this country…. add it up yourself. Their average income is over a million dollars…. the average, mind you… Many of them are multi-millionaires, many times over…. What do they know of the lives of the common man? How can anyone believe they would have the same set of interests to pursue, or that the agendas they hold are, in ANY way, concerned with making things better for anyone but themselves….
“Reader, suppose you were an idiot. And suppose you were a member of Congress. But I repeat myself.” — Mark Twain
As I said, there are a very few exceptions, who, basically, are powerless to change any part of the big picture…. too much money, power, and inertia working against them… Plus, every one of those at that level, who accidentally make it to the national stage, and are those who would work for the people, sincerely and honestly, are always isolated by the rest, to make them completely ineffective…. witness the only moral president of the last century, Jimmy Carter…. from the current crop of Congressmen with any honor at all, I’d say Al Franken comes closest, and he is under massive political assault, by the Republican Party, the Tea Party, AND the Koch Brother’s Super PAC, Citizens United….)
Ah yes, Citizens United…. that famous Supreme Court decision, which makes my contention, about the bought-and-paid for servile indenturing of the Supreme Court, not so very hard to believe, giving, as it did, the very clear message the Court’s belief in the sacred status of corporate personhood, and the inviolability of corporations to do whatever they must to protect and preserve their bottom line, which is the profit they make on all the predatory hoarding of resources, and the control that gives them over society and culture at large…. Anything at all that interferes with smooth flow of money into their coffers is not to be allowed….
There is a bill now in the Senate, awaiting a vote, that, if passed, will do away with the decision by the Court re: corporate donations to political campaigns; it is a Constitutional Amendment, which was the ONLY way to stop the decision from becoming the law of the land. It will prevent the corporations from having completely unlimited power to influence elections, by removing the restrictions they, as corporate persons, to political campaigns, effectively halting the formation and continued existence of Super-PAC’s, such as Citizens United….
You know, the one owned by the Koch brothers, ultra-conservative billionaires, with a sense of entitlement you have to see to believe…. incredible assholes, both of them…. Sorry, just can’t stand people like that, who have no compassion or “fellow-feeling”; in my estimation, they do not deserve to be called human, and, to be honest, I consider them to be a total waste of sperm….
This government, as it now exists, has NOTHING to do with the Constitution that allegedly forms the basis for its existence…. Almost every statement in the Constitution, especially in the amendments that make up the Bill of Rights, is no longer in force, essentially, and we can no longer count those rights as anything but a memory….
The experiment in government started by our founding fathers, who wanted a government that would protect and support the people, not oppress them, as every other government in history has done to its citizenry; once in power, every human being alive seems to fall prey to the urge to put aside all of their compassion, all of their integrity, and all their altruism, whereupon, they begin to make changes, that will ultimately server their ends, which are ONLY concerned with meeting their own needs, not those of the people…. It has happened EVERY TIME….
I challenge ANYONE to find an example, anywhere in the past 5000 years, of a government that demonstrated any appreciable degree of care for the people, ahead of what was important to the ruling class…. Just one will do, because even that will provide hope that it can be done…. but, I’m a pretty well-read guy, and I can’t think, or remember, any government in history who were considered to be any such thing as “compassionate” or that actually made life better for its citizenry….
As one of the Shrubs said one time, “Bring it on….”
I think that’s all…. I cant, at this point, think of anything more to add to this discussion, so, why don’t we give it up now, and move on….
“Sorry, my mind was on edible underwear today.” — Smart Bee, providing gigoid with an excuse for the above….
Whoops! How’d that get in here? Oh, I remember…. After the somber sobriety of the above politirant, I went to look for an appropriate pearl to close with, whereupon I found this, & couldn’t resist…. Okay, here is a proper thought with which to end this piece….
“May you have eyes like a hawk and a spouse with warts.” — Smart Bee, being a smart ass….
Sorry, I’m not taking the rap for that one; it’s on SB…. It just showed up when I pasted the right pearl, I THOUGHT…. THIS is the proper ending I was looking for, when I was so rudely interrupted, by a bloody database!……
“A conqueror is always a lover of peace.” — Karl von Clausewitz (1780-1831)
~~ from “On war”; copied by Lenin in his notebook, with notation, “Ah, Ah, witty”. ~~
Whew! Good thing the first half of that rant was already done, or I’d have been there forever this morning…. After that, I need something to cheer me up a little bit…. no, make that a LOT…. I know…. In this mood, some pure, cold, clean, powerful brilliance is just the ticket…. Since none of mine quite fit that bill, this one will do just fine….
In the marketplace they are piling the dry sticks.
A thicket of shadows is a poor coat. I inhabit
The wax image of myself, a doll’s body.
Sickness begins here: I am the dartboard for witches.
Only the devil can eat the devil out.
In the month of red leaves I climb to a bed of fire.
It is easy to blame the dark: the mouth of a door,
The cellar’s belly. They’ve blown my sparkler out.
A black-sharded lady keeps me in parrot cage.
What large eyes the dead have!
I am intimate with a hairy spirit.
Smoke wheels from the beak of this empty jar.
If I am a little one, I can do no harm.
If I don’t move about, I’ll knock nothing over. So I said,
Sitting under a potlid, tiny and inert as a rice grain.
They are turning the burners up, ring after ring.
We are full of starch, my small white fellows. We grow.
It hurts at first. The red tongues will teach the truth.
Mother of beetles, only unclench your hand:
I’ll fly through the candle’s mouth like a singeless moth.
Give me back my shape. I am ready to construe the days
I coupled with dust in the shadow of a stone.
My ankles brighten. Brightness ascends my thighs.
I am lost, I am lost, in the robes of all this light.
~~ Sylvia Plath ~~
“Poetry is the eloquence of truth.” — Joseph Campbell
Boy…. reading Sylvia is certainly a roller-coaster of an experience, isn’t it? I feel lots better now; all the lingering dregs of angst and resentment at the shenanigans of the BRC, and the rest of the asininnies, have departed, forthwith, leaving me relatively normal, in re: all-around feelings of contentment with life…. Since I’m 63 years old, I know that won’t last forever, or even very long, so, I’m intent on enjoying every minute of it….
Do be, do be, doo….
Okay, that’s enough normal for me…. I’m going to do what I do, which is put together a fresh, random harlequin style pearl, with parameters set at the extreme end of SILLY, right smack up against the backside of INSANITY…. Should be fun!…. Let’s go annoy Smart Bee for a while, okay? Okay! Let’s go!….
“It is a mistake to think of all demons as being exactly alike. Some are short while others are tall; some are yellow, others are blue; some are nasty and others are extremely nasty. Some of the nastiest are quite fast as well. Should you encounter one of these, it is a mistake to think at all. Much more appropriate are such responses as running, screaming, and the very rapid formation of a last will and testament.” — The Teachings of Ebenezum, Vol. IX
“Reality does not exist – yet.” — Smart Bee
“If I kiss you, that is a psychological interaction. On the other hand, if I hit you over the head with a brick, that is also a psychological interaction. The difference is that one is friendly and the other is not so friendly. The crucial point is if you can tell which is which.” — Dolph Sharp, I’m O.K., You’re Not So Hot
“Being normal is driving me crazy.” — Smart Bee (who obviously was listening all those times gigoid was talking to himself…. he thought….)
“The mind is everything,” wrote Proust. No doubt true, when you’re dead from the neck down.” — Edward Abbey
“Fear always springs from ignorance.” — Smart Bee, and, the Bhagavad Gita, paraphrased
“For I never have seen, and never shall see, that the cessation of the evidence of existence is necessarily evidence of the cessation of existence.” — De Morgan (1839-1917)
— Bother! said Pooh,as he rolled over into the wet spot.
(Oops, sorry, that was supposed to go somewhere else…. oh, well, we’re on fun mode, so, I’ll let it stay….)
“The only very marked difference between the average civilized man and the average savage is that the one is gilded and the other is painted.” — Mark Twain
“Before you criticize people, you should walk a mile in their shoes. That way, when you criticize them, you’ve got a mile-long head start. And you have their shoes.” — The Lion
“I’d rather learn from one bird how to sing than to teach ten thousand stars how not to dance.” — ee cummings
“As if you could kill time without injuring eternity.” — Henry David Thoreau
‘Tis a long time ago, and I have no more yet;
Nor ever ever shall, until that I die,
For the longer I live the more fool am I.
— “Wit and Mirth, an Antidote against Melancholy” (1684)
Okay…. I know, I went a bit overboard, again; chalk it up to having so much energy, after my marathon sleep last night…. Bonus: You have, and I have, without realizing it, witnessed the creation of the very first 13-star pearl…. I have no clue as to how it happened, other than forgetting where I was while collecting…. The clipboard appends each quote, but, doesn’t allow me to look at it, to count, before pasting… It doesn’t matter, at all, really, because, in this case, it worked, just fine, which is a word we could easily use to describe this pearl… Without getting overly wordy, or overly long, these 13 ideas present us with some fine entertainment, and a few pokes in the conscience, as well as a good portion of silliness… I like it….
So much for serendipity and planning…. In spite of the sleep, and, in spite of the plan my unseasonably clear mind came up with this morning, I’m running a little late…. this, even though over half the rant was already done… But, when I sat to go over it, it just got me going again…. Then, the long pearl in section three got going…. Happily, it’s done, and I’m not going to fuss with it…. I will see y’all tomorrow, with who knows what new and exciting ideas, given an entire day of relative clear-mindedness? Not me, certainly, though I’ve got as much chance as anyone of guessing…. But, where would be the fun in that?…. Bye, for now….
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,
I just sits.
gigoid, the dubious
PLEASE STOP READING THIS MESSAGE NOW.