I like to think that I’m a tolerant man in many ways, though there are a number of human behaviors that test that tolerance on a regular basis. Take, for example, being lied to…. When someone lies to me, my first reaction is akin to emotional pain, a sense of betrayal that hits me in my most vulnerable area, my sense of trust. Like everyone else, I’ve been lied to in my life; I’ve been fairly lucky in some respects with that, but, the very nature of trust is such that one cannot stop trusting, just because that trust is betrayed…. The result is wariness, and a lessening of the impulse to trust on faith….
“Appearances to the mind are of four kinds. Things either are what they appear to be; or they neither are, nor appear to be; or they are, and do not appear to be; or they are not, and yet appear to be. Rightly to aim in all these cases is the wise man’s task.” — Epictetus (c. 60 AD) — Discourses, Book i, Chap. xxvii
Epictetus seems to have covered all the bases with this statement, showing perfectly the choices we must make in order to trust, once we’ve had a taste of lies…. which, if my case is any indication, started at about the age of 3 or 4 years, when I first had occasion to deal with the world at large, outside family. I can’t recall if I was exposed to any significant lying before that; I must have been, for siblings are competitive, if nothing else, and will not always tell the truth when confronted with their misbehaviors….Those occasions were overseen by parents, and resolved according to their parameters, giving us the lesson of truth amongst ourselves…. But, out in the real world, even at that tender age, I learned very quickly that not everyone had my dad’s commitment to honesty….
I remember going to church one Sunday, and listening to the preacher’s sermon about something or other, and even though I was only about 5, I remember thinking to myself, “That CAN’T be true!”, when he made some statement or another about God, or the Devil, or some such fantasy…. I guess my “crap detector” was on full that day, because I distinctly remember the feeling of confusion, and even youthful anger, at some adult NOT telling the truth, while pretending they were…. It seemed obvious to me that the preacher didn’t totally believe all he was relating, and I thought it wrong to be telling people to believe stuff that he didn’t believe himself….
But, hey, that’s just me, and we all know how far off the beaten track I’ve wandered in my life…. Maybe learning the world is full of lies at age 5 is unusual, but, to my mind, I’m a lucky man, to have, first, been raised by a man, and woman, who believed in the power of honor, and honesty, and taught those qualities to me, and my sibs (though, to be candid, I’m not sure how well a couple of them took it; they always skated the edge on that…. 😉 If any of them read this, they will know of whom I speak….), and second, to have, as a result, a sure-fire standard against which to measure the truthfulness of others, thereby protecting me from the worst effects of lies, and the pain of being lied to by those who would take advantage of my trust…..
SIGH…. I did it again, didn’t I? I jumped right into a rant, barely pausing long enough to suck down some coffee before sounding off…. I keep forgetting this is the intro section, and that the ranting should come later, when I’m more lucid, and not so emotionally charged as when I first get up. Of course, ranting this way DOES put a lot of words on the screen, which gets me through the introductory section in a hurry, but, I’m not sure what it is doing to the flow of it all…. Maybe one of y’all could let me know how it seems?…. I’d appreciate some feedback on that…. or not…. Whatever is clever, ffolkes…
I suppose, though, this means that I have no further excuses for not getting started on today’s outburst, which you can see, has already burst out…. Shall we Pearl?….
“If you keep on doing what you’ve always done, you’ll keep on getting what you’ve always got.” — W.L. Bateman
“The more sand that has escaped from the hourglass of our life, the clearer we should see through it.” — Jean-Paul Sartre
Sorry, both seemed appropriate, and I waffled on making a decision, so, rather than spend too much time over it, you get both…. consider it a bonus….. 😀
In the past few days, I’ve put out a lot of words, ranting and railing against those fools in Washington, who are making such a display of idiocy that one can barely rationalize spending money to go to the circus, when the same show plays for free on all the network channels every day…. It’s kind of fun, actually, and easy, too, as those asinine fools just keep saying and doing the most outrageously stupid stuff, it’s like shooting ducks in a pond to find rantable material….
Apparently, as the above intro section indicates, I’m on full out rant mode these days, finding it very easy to take my shots at the public figures who so deserve all I can throw at them…. However, I’m going to be a nice guy today, and forgo another rant in this section, thereby relieving you of the need to gird your grid for another one. Instead, I’m going to refer you to another fine article penned by one of my favorite columnists, Mark Morford, who writes for the SF Chronicle website, SFGATE, as well as in the paper itself; he’s published a couple of books, and has put up a couple of websites that display his interests, which are, to be sure, esoteric, and a bit kinky, like his writing…
This article is one of the best I’ve ever seen, from him, or from anyone else…. and, if you know how much I read, you’ll know that is saying a LOT…. I mean it, though, because this one is special…. In it, you will find the Secret of Life…. Oh, I know, you’ve heard that claim before, and it never turns out to be quite what you expected, or hoped for…. This, however, is the real deal…. The article speaks about, and clearly states, a principle of living that anyone can adopt, and by doing so, can achieve the serenity and inner peace that are so deservedly touted by the sages of the ages…. S’truth, for sure, ffolkes… Read it, and you’ll see what I’m talking about…. I won’t prejudice your minds any further, or try to convince you, but, it’s all true, so, READ IT….
See? What did I tell you?….
I’m feeling more than a little lazy today, so lazy I don’t even want to spend the energy to Google… which means we’ll be going with one of my own poems today…. I can feel a new one percolating; it’s been simmering now for several days, but, apparently, isn’t ready to come out to play yet… This one, though not the most elegant of my work, is one of my true favorites, just because it’s so real, and so true…. I hope you enjoy it….
Ah Ain’t Sho, but Mebbe So….
Fried eggs got nuthin’ on me
Ah’m not even sure of mah name,
or how Ah come to be;
Ah got no idea from where Ah came.
Ah does like a mystery tho’,
puzzlin’ things out so’s Ah knows,
good from bad fo sho,
Ah sho don’t want no rock pillows.
If’n Ah cain’t figure out what’s best,
Ah just falls back on mah Daddy’s words,
seems he knowed just whut’d stand the test,
‘n how to gentle the scaredest birds.
‘Course, he’d lived a good long time,
‘n saw lots of stuff go on by;
Went to a war, n’ lost a piece or two,
never once used it fer an alibi.
He tol’ me once Ah’d best learn to learn,
school’s only cool if ya ain’t already a fool.
Yer own good measure you can earn,
by startin’ yer learnin’ with the Golden Rule.
Always seemed to me as Ah growed up,
he mostly only spoke if it wuz true,
‘n by doin’ that clued me to what’s up,
kept me from stuff that’d a made me blue.
Without ever sayin’ the word itself,
Ah learned ’bout honor, ‘n helpin’ others
not some fake stuff from some shelf,
but, knowin’ whut’s right, ‘n that we’re all brothers.
Ah’ve been around long enough now, Ah think
to get around the block at least two times.
I s’pose long as my head don’t shrink
Ah’ll keep on doin’ right, ‘n makin’ these rhymes…..
~~ gigoid ~~
Since I’m the one who put it here, I suppose this was in the back of my mind when I wrote today’s introduction, about lies… This article, to which I’ve supplied the link below, discusses the shutdown of a secure email client by the NSA, in response to their persecution. The article is a very complete, and erudite, examination of a complex issue the government is doing their best to cover up, or at least keep from the public awareness as much as possible.
The information contained herein is completely scary, in its implications of just how far the spying on the public has become a part of the governments usual order of business…. It is also frightening in that it shows clearly the extent to which the BRC will go to protect its soft underbelly of clandestine operations, none of which we are supposed to see, or hear of…
The extent to which the government is pursuing the whistle blowers who are revealing their hidden agendas, and the campaign against both the people who are supporting and aiding those whistle blowers, and against the public, who wants to know about all this, has reached what I consider to be not just immoral, but illegal, and ultimately, treasonous behavior against the citizens of this country….
The US government, by all that is implied in this article, has declared war on the unwashed masses of the American public sector, using the same techniques of spying and clandestine operations that are being perpetrated in wartime, against our country’s sworn enemies. The quest for complete access to the communications of terrorists has led the agencies involved to treat their own people as the enemy, and gather all the information possible to monitor the public’s private communications, ostensibly to catch terrorists, but, in reality, to look for reasons to prosecute, and persecute, normal, honest citizens, who just “happen” to disagree with that government, and have the temerity to say so in public…
I could go on for days on this, as there are now far too many examples of their chicanery for them to hide; many of those acts are detailed herein…. What disturbs me more than most of it is the way the government is using the Patriot Act to ignore the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, in their blundering about in search of the bad guys, which, of course, only they can see, and which, according to them, only they can find, and only if they are allowed do whatever they want….
Pretty scary stuff, eh? Did you know that the government not only has access to your private email, but can, if they so desire, prosecute you for what you write in it, all without ever letting anyone else know about it? Yep…. It hasn’t quite come to it yet, but, if they ever get their greedy, grasping hands on Ed Snowden, you will see just how little they care about what the public thinks, as they will use all the power of the law at their disposal to bury him, and, if possible, will never even tell the public they’ve done so… If the CIA, or the NSA, or any other of our acronymical clandestine agencies, should ever find him, they will spirit him away from the public eye, and he will never be seen again…. Mark my words, this is not a guess, ffolkes, this is what they’ll do, if they can….
“The price of liberty is, always has been, and always will be blood: the person who is not willing to die for his liberty has already lost it to the first scoundrel who is willing to risk dying to violate that person’s liberty. Are you free?” — Andrew Ford
Eric Snowden is free, for the moment…. how long he stays free is up to us, I think….
The government, which is essentially under the control of corporate masters whose names you’ll never know, are getting bolder all the time in their continuing efforts to reduce the number and extent of our basic rights; we already have lost at least half of the Bill of Rights, and they’re working on eliminating the rest as fast as can be…. The whole time, they smile, and smile, and tell us they’re doing it all for our benefit…. What a load of crap!….
In the intro section, I mentioned my “crap detector”, which all humans have installed; many just never learn to use it, or are too lazy to listen to it. Mine tells me that we are being lied to more each day, as more of what is being done under cover is brought to light; it also tells me to be careful, because, if they can, these assholes are going to kill themselves with their deliberate ignorance, and their delusional belief that they are immune to the laws of nature. Not only are they doing so, but, they’re trying to drag the rest of us down into oblivion with them…
I, for one, don’t plan on making it easy for them….. To round this off, here is a five star pearl to drive these points home…. or, at least, toss them up into the face of the nearest NSA analyst…. bless their little black hearts….
“Our contemporary Tories (sub: politicians, or talking heads… gigoid…) prefer the term “ordered liberty” to “freedom”. The word “freedom” scares them; it has too much of a paleolithic ring to it.” — Edward Abbey
“Hatred is the coward’s revenge for being intimidated” — George Bernard Shaw
“Your own safety is at stake when your neighbor’s house is in flames.” — Horace
“A criminal is a person with predatory instincts who has not sufficient capital to form a corporation.” — Howard Scott, Economist
“But it’s a sad reminder when your organ grinder has to come to you for the rent, and all you’ve got to give him is the use of your sideshow tent.” — Mark Knopfler
Well, here we have another rambling, loosely coherent entry into the archives of nearly wasted words that makes up the Pearls of Virtual Wisdom library… let’s see how it came out, from an objective standpoint, should one be available….
I have to admit, I never seem to run out of stuff to say, do I? Oh well, as long as it doesn’t hurt anyone (who doesn’t deserve it…), and as long as I stick to the truth of any matter I discuss, I’ll keep on saying it, because I can, and because I think it needs to be said…. Y’all will just have to take your chances along with the rest of us as to how that goes over…. Whatever that end result may be, or may not be, this one is done, and for that, we can all be thankful, yes?…. See ya….
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,
I just sits.