March 1 note: I’m backfilling — legitimately. I wrote this yesterday in response to a fine post on Crooks and Liars by David Niewert, entitled: “Glenn Beck’s eliminationist attacks on progressives: How long before someone acts on this violent rhetoric?” A taste:
What motivates this kind of talk and behavior is called eliminationism: a politics and a culture that shuns dialogue and the democratic exchange of ideas in favor of the pursuit of outright elimination of the opposing side, either through suppression, exile, and ejection, or extermination.
Which you should read, and to which I replied (although it was undoubtedly wasted time on my part, to judge by the comments that followed):
Glenn Beck: Buck Feck.
The sad part of all this is that without that vast, imbecilic gaggle of drooling dittoheads, Beck would have nothing more than a soapbox in a public park somewhere, where he could rant in a drool-splattered trenchcoat with a crumpled brown paper bag wrapped around a bottle of Thunderbird. Continue reading
[NOTE: More on the Chile tsunami when some clarity appears.]
I am to be congratulated. I am a winner.
No Nigerian prince; no Congolese Oil Minister, no long-lost relative in Borneo kicking the bucket and leaving me as his sole heir. No dying gazillionaire on another continent with a terminal case of the guilts and a sincere desire to disperse his ill-got gains to avoid the screaming meemees of a burning Hereafter.
Yes, I am the winner of the (Gasp!)… Continue reading
‘Lynchings are illegal, no matter
how bad a guy the lynchee is.’
NOTE: This proved EERILY prophetic, written a week before its publication on August 8, 2003, or 1,247 days before Saddam Hussein’s ACTUAL hanging by men in ski masks on December 30, 2006.*
[* Julian Day 731,793 minus Julian Day 733,040 equals 1,247 Days. Or, 3.416438 years. ]
video here Continue reading
Working on a big — nay, a HUGE — story.
Meantime, here’s a blast from the past. But first, a contemporary headline, from a most un-pacific Andrew Sullivan at the Atlantic:
14 Feb 2010 10:40 pm
That seems to me to be the big news out of Jonathan Karl’s interview with the former vice-president today. There is not a court in the United States or in the world that does not consider waterboarding torture. The Red Cross certainly does, and it’s the governing body in international law. It is certainly torture according to the UN Convention on Torture and the Geneva Conventions….
So, let’s take a skip down the primrose path to damnation, shall we? Continue reading
Sen. Evan Bayh (D, Ind.), son of the late Sen. Birch Bayh (D, Ind.) has written an op-ed in the New York Times today, giving his reasons for leaving the U.S. Senate at the end of his term next January. Appropriately enough, it’s entitled, “Why I’m Leaving the Senate.”
And, I have to give props to his ghostwriter: it’s well-written, interesting and reasonable. In fact, I utterly agree with it. Insanely partisan politics have stratified our government into Capulets and Montagues, and woe betide the poor schmuck who crosses party lines. Consider the fate of poor Mercutio, who tried to remain friends with both sides and got shish-kabob’d for his troubles. Continue reading
We will return to our thrilling tale of astroturf, skullduggery and multiple personalities in a moment. If you would kindly allow the author a short respite to SCREAM LIKE A GODDAM BANSHEE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
There. That’s better.
What brought THIS on?
[Note: these are some of the biggest astroturf sponsors of the Tea Party movement. See bottom for links.]
Americans for Limited Government of Fairfax, Virginia may well have finally crossed the line into blatant lawbreaking. Blatant, that is, unless lawyers can well, LAWYER it. It seems a plain violation of US Tax Code, engaging in a brazen and successful attempt to “take out” a Republican not deemed “Republican” enough in the Illinois primary for IL Congressional District 10.
Sure, for years they’ve sneered at regulations and regulators, but not only did they seemingly blatantly break federal tax law regarding “Civic Associations” (like a volunteer fire department, which is what a 501(c)4 is classified as in tax law), but they’ve actually DOCUMENTED the activities in a seemingly perfect chain of evidence!
We took out Beth Coulson! Copyright Americans for Limited Government!
Is this the culmination of a long train of abuses by the “term limits” crowd that refuses to term limit itself out of acting as a private legislature? Continue reading
In part i. we talked about HOW humans construct the simulation of the “real world” that we carry around in our heads. In part ii. we talked about how LANGUAGE creates “reality” within that selfsame head by virtue of our fundamental social nature. In part iii. we will talk about how language is used to create FALSE facts. Otherwise known as “lies.”
The lunatic is on the grass
Which brings us to the comfluence of parts one and two: we perceive and knit together a subjective reality that we call the “world.” Using language, we process that world to others to form our “objective” reality, but that mapping of language creates its OWN worlds. Continue reading
‘Reality 101, the conclusion’ will appear presently. Mean Time, this is what happens when you’re a creepy guy all alone for Valentine’s Day, I guess …
Regular readers will recall that Arthur the Viking recently attempted to “refute” this blog and defend the “superior” greed of the Randroid population. Evidently his widdle “manly man” feelings were all hurted by my rebuttal post. (“Something for the Eloi” 30 Dec o9)
It made Arthur the Manly Viking cry. Boo hoo.
(And seemed to roil his entire extremely misogynistic boys’ klub. Note their sigs.)
So, like all manly men, Arthur the Viking’s fans decided to lay a “trap” for yours truly. Here’s the post (sigs are in italics): Continue reading
In part i. — which you ought go back and read — the nature of our “world” was laid out: how we weave the five senses into that complex and richly textured simulation of “real” reality, and how we define what is “real.”*
[* Real in the sense of “truth that I can act on, that can form the basis of my decisions.]
But that’s only part of it. This is the OTHER part:
Humans are inherently social animals. We communicate, we cooperate, and we serve, in our civilizations, a “higher” purpose that no member of that civilization might be aware of. (We call it the force of “history,” and our history is, paradoxically, a history of individuals who advanced that collective flow.)
Indeed, many inventions, advances and revolutionary ideas have no particular individual value to the individual who “realized” the notion. They MUST exist in context of society, as an automobile must exist within a society with a road system and a widespread fuel distribution network. We even call them “stations.”
This is our paradox. We may have evolved from — and share — the instinctual drives OF the anthropoids slash mammals, but our closest analog in nature are the hive insects, the bees, the termites, the ants. If you look at the center of our great cities, they appear, if you squint your eyes, as termite mounds. Continue reading
If we’re going to engage in a real politics about real issues concerning real people, we need to have a basic grasp of what reality actually is.
I know that sounds vaguely ridiculous. But, as in martial arts, falling down is the first thing you learn, and the first thing you learn about falling down is that you don’t know how to fall down properly.
So: reality. What is that? Continue reading