Sunday, November 30, 2008
If this pig suffers no consequences, does Britain have any testosterone left at all, at all?
Note the welfare payments...
PS. An outline of the millennial jihad of the Religion of Peace into India, or How Do You Think Pakistan Came To Be?
Saturday, November 29, 2008
The New York Daily News online has a set of photos arranged around the theme of shocks to the American psyche. Kennedy's assassination, etc.
The photo of a bombed out Hiroshima carries this caption: "Aug. 6, 1945 is a day that will forever live on in infamy in the history of warfare, as the first ever atomic bomb was deployed over the Japanese city of Hiroshima. 140,000 people were killed and the city leveled."
It was Franklin Roosevelt who described the Japanese surprise attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7th, 1941 as a day that will live in infamy. Now, sixty years later, we have some clueless asshole hack at the News turning his phrase around to use against the United States.
Does this jerk have any notion of what kind of fighting took place in the Pacific? The first bomb was preceded by six months, six months, of intensive firebombing. And it took a second bomb to prod the Japanese into surrender, six days following. Any notion at all of what kind of fighters the Japanese were, even on outlying islands? And then to face them on their homeland?
Guess what the estimate of lost American lives would have been had we had to invade the Japanese homeland? The most common estimate was around half a million. Or try this.
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
The fall of 2006 was the beginning of quite a period in my life, one full of renewed energy. My Thanksgiving post reflected that. And a year ago, I was feeling much the same way.
Not now. If gratitude is a only mood, I am not feeling very grateful these days. In the pillar matters of love and work, transition and uncertainty are the order of the day; promising possibilities have shrunk into sleep-threatening problems. The aging of my parents continues and it is painful to watch. A man sits in the White House whom I do not want to be there, and money is very much on everyone's mind. My 401k started bleeding badly last month and I don't even want to know what it looks like now. Paranoid fantasies of all kinds of disasters and tragedies are easy to come by.
The larger shifts in the world are ones I have no control over. The shifts in love and work are my own doing, however much they feel like the results of forces larger than myself.
That is something to be thankful for, I think. Pride in one's moral standing is a perilous stance. I have long come to admit, even embrace, myself as a morally flawed being. It's more of a relief than anything else. Trying to be good all the time...god, what a bore. I am a relatively decent guy with the usual set of character cracks and failures. But one thing I have tried to avoid is falling into the comfortable trap of blaming other people for what is my own responsibility.
I may in fact be or become a victim of the Panic of 2008 or whatever they will call it. I am pretty sure that I had nothing to do with causing it. But the other rough places in my life have come from choices I made. I do not believe that humans have a vastly unhindered freedom of will. Free we are, but within the limits of our human condition. And it is a condition. So if my choices prove to have been questionable...and you never know til the whole story reaches its end...I take responsibility. And I am glad that I can.
I still have my family and friends, my health is good. And I am smart enough to know that while mood may enhance gratitude, or lessen its impact, it is, like love, something you do, even when you can't feel it much.
So, even at a holiday time very different from the last two years...Thank you.
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
A straight actor playing Harvey Milk's lover talks about his on-screen kiss with Madonna's ex, Sean Penn, and the accolades he got for doing it so well. Old Dave Letterman gets to say that maybe that's a skill that an actor wouldn't want to be known for. Ha ha. And then when the guy offers to show Dave his skills, Dave makes a face, but turns his cheek for a chaste peck. Everyone finds this hilarious. Gosh, Dave is so cool.
Imagine if it were not Dave Letterman, but some media type or other without his Bush Hating credentials. Bill OReilly or Sean Hannity. The howls! The homophobia! The contempt!
Instead, he gets to be condescending --at best--and even Armistead Maupin's husband thinks it's cool: "Daddy Dave Letterman" gets a smooch.
The commissars of the "Human Rights Commission", forced out into the light because of brave and public battles with Ezra Levant and Mark Steyn, tapped an old friend to write a report on themselves. To everyone's surprise, he recommends that the law which supports them be repealed.
None too soon.
Monday, November 24, 2008
Saturday, November 22, 2008
A friend, Tony, (names and details have been altered) sent me a copy of a set of emails with a prospective date. "Chuck" is a classic example of a borderline personality. With this type of guy, once you trip the switch, you go from being a hot and interesting man to being a worthless piece of lying dirty trash...in about a minute. Tony, by the way, is as advertised, a very nice and considerate guy.
There's a lot of this stuff out there. I've had a similar "dialogue" myself a time or two.
Looking for relationship. I’m convinced the best relationships are a combination of friendship, common interests, respect, and animal attraction. I’m a decent guy, mature (50+) guy here; professional, upbeat. Here are some of the things that I value: good listeners; thoughtful, even-keeled guys; well-educated guys appeal to me.
CHUCK’S CONTACT: Hi. Until I saw your ad I didn't think anyone looked for the qualities that you described. That is what I seek; however, can't find it. Local guys are very proud, materialistic and too sure of themselves. I'm not really looking for a LTR. I'm looking for friendship above all. I’m just a few years younger than you.
Anyway, let me know if there is an interest. I am a non-mainstream type gay guy so I don't do bars. Not looking for quickie sex.
I am aware of those that have little. I volunteer for a local mental health entity. I also am living on very little while I finish school. I am humble; however, not stupid and not a person that is into crazy stuff.
Chuck, just got back from a business trip. You sound like a great guy. Friendship is a prerequisite for any relationship. You know from my profile what I'm looking for. Is a relationship out of the question for you? Non-mainstream is great...I like that.
Tony, sex is NOT what I am after. I am after friendship above all. A relationship would entail someone who is stable, without any STD's or AIDS, blood disorders or the like. How as your recent trip? Wish I could have accompanied you
I admire the fact that you show off your body at your age. That takes a lot of effort. It is terrible that we have to look so fit for the younger guys. I prefer guys over 40 and always have.
Chuck, I like your point of view: sex is not what I am after. I am after a friendship which has the potential to become a long-term relationship, which eventually will include sex. Is that a possibility with you? I have no std's of any kind. No blood disorders. Totally the stable type.
Tony, I responded to you yesterday; however, did not hear back from you. May I remind you that you ad listed: "No drama. Talks out conflicts" If a conflict is already going on, we need to talk about it.
You did not respond to whether you had AIDS or not. You merely responded "I have no std's of any kind". Whereas, AIDS is a std, I was thinking that a "stable" man as you have described yourself would have included that. Realize that you are not dealing with a "dumn" (sic) individual. I may be humble, etc. (per your specifications); however, I am an integrity oriented person and I expect you to be the same.
We are both mature men and we should be communicating and not playing the games of those younger or less understanding of human dynamics.
If I don't hear from you, I assume you were just "jacking around" and had no real interest in formulating a friendship/relationship but were using that pretext to get someone to have sex with you. Your body is very thin and that is a source of concern for me as you may have AIDS. I do not wish to compromise my health with an individual with AIDS.
I'll respond tonight, Chuck. Sorry for the silence. I don't have AIDS. Until later tonight, Tony.
Tony, I did not hear from you. I gathered that with your ad running that you are dating/screwing all kinds of men and getting yourself subjected to AIDs and other diseases. I had a feeling from your appearance that you were just a player and not really committed. I don't have time for your kind of people in my life.
You might want to change your ad since you ask for a lot; however, you are nothing like the ad. If you want someone to be a certain way, realize you have to have some kind of honorable characteristics. Most guys are like you -- wanton. No need to respond, I am done with you!
I just got your email, Chuck. I'm not sure why you couldn't wait for me to respond. I was going to respond tonight as I promised. I really try to keep my word. I'm definitely not a player. I won't be subjected to AIDS since I have no anal intercourse. Ever. Not even once in my life--not as a pitcher or a catcher. I've never had any kind of sexually transmitted disease. Ever. I am the same person now as when I responded to you a few days ago. Nothing has changed. I'm not perfect, but I work hard to be kind.
Sorry we couldn't connect. I tried my best.
You tried your best? You didn't try to write me at a decent hour. I also got no explanation for why you didn't get back earlier. In any case I do not believe you. You are trash just like the other gay people that I write to or have written to me. I wish you guys would get your act together. For your age, especially. I am sure you were dating/screwing someone. I don't believe a word. You didn't even try. You were too busy on your date tonight. You lost out. It is very rare to find men like me. You are full of drama and LIES!! Goodbye and get lost!
Wow, you're a hard man.
I was telling the truth. Every word.
I'm truly sorry things didn't work out.
I am not a hard man. You are a damn LIAR!
You are not sorry about anything.
You planned it that way. You are indeed warped!!!
Victor Davis Hanson, whom I greatly admire, has a long piece on a variety of un-PC things and touches on the femmy change in the American male voice.
The other nine:
1. High school Latin would arrest the decline of American education.His paragraph on speech is way down the page, so I am gonna reprint it here, without permission. Hope he doesn't mind.
2. Hollywood is going the way of Detroit.
3. The old media is old.
4. Wisdom about money will return after this panic.
5. California has become a touchstone example of what not to do.
6. The US male accent has become feminized.
7. Do not go into farming.
8. The shrill Left is worse than the hard right ever was.
9. K-12 education in the US is wrecked.
Unfortunately for me, I am quite aware of voices. How a man or woman sounds when they speak is something that I pay attention to. I wish I didn't. The increasing metastasis of the Rising Terminal Interrogative, where every sentence sounds like a request for permission, makes the intonation of a lot of people --especially a lot of gay men-- grating.
An opposite style is epitomized in ubiquitous TV adman Billy Mays, whose high-volume shouting about rags and soap and health insurance makes me want to put chopsticks in my ears.
I know I have blogged on this before and most people don't even notice (not only the blog, of course, but the issue), but this is my blog and I'll, like, post what I want to? Here's VDH.
Something has happened to the generic American male accent. Maybe it is urbanization; perhaps it is now an affectation to sound precise and caring with a patina of intellectual authority; perhaps it is the fashion culture of the metrosexual; maybe it is the influence of the gay community in arts and popular culture. Maybe the ubiquitous new intonation comes from the scarcity of salty old jobs in construction, farming, or fishing. But increasingly to meet a young American male about 25 is to hear a particular nasal stress, a much higher tone than one heard 40 years ago, and, to be frank, to listen to a precious voice often nearly indistinguishable from the female. How indeed could one make Westerns these days, when there simply is not anyone left who sounds like John Wayne, Richard Boone, Robert Duvall, or Gary Cooper much less a Struther Martin, Jack Palance, L.Q. Jones, or Ben Johnson? I watched the movie Twelve O’clock High the other day, and Gregory Peck and Dean Jagger sounded liked they were from another planet. I confess over the last year, I have been interviewed a half-dozen times on the phone, and had no idea at first whether a male or female was asking the questions. All this sounds absurd, but I think upon reflection readers my age (55) will attest they have had the same experience. In the old days, I remember only that I first heard a variant of this accent with the old Paul Lynde character actor in one of the Flubber movies; now young men sound closer to his camp than to a Jack Palance or Alan Ladd.
Friday, November 21, 2008
With an HT to American Thinker, the mutual admiration
of American and French, yes French, soldiers in Afghanistan.
The French soldier on his American brothers-in-arms,
in English translation and the original pour vous autres
qui pouvez le lire en francais.
The American on his French counterparts.
I'm so glad that we have left behind the terrible theocratic past, where total strangers felt free to intervene in your discussions and accuse you of heresy, and were even paid by the Church to do it.
Can you imagine what a chilling effect that would have on freedom of speech, on open-minded inquiry? I'm glad that superstitious and dogmatic intolerance is over with.
Oh, wait. Sorry. I haven't had my coffee yet.
It's not the terrible theocratic past...whenever that was...it's now.
In Canada, home of caring pacifist evolved humans who are SO much better then vulgar greedy racist violent christianoid Americans . And it's not the old Church paying them, but the New Church, the University.
God, I would be so tempted to slug these PC Commisars right in the mouth, and utter some hateful epithet at the same time. Several times, actually.
It can be argued that the progressive masters we are now under got their start in the civil rights movement AND at the Berkeley....hold your breath for the irony...Free Speech Movement.
Enantiodromia. It's a bitch.
And while we're on the subject of Canada, my second country, the Stalinist "Human Rights Commissions" have finally turned in a not-guilty verdict or two, after a 100% conviction rate since inception. And irony of ironies, they have never heard a case against a Jew (until Ezra Levant took them on), a homo, a Muslim. Only Christians and conservatives. And it took a brave Jew like Levant to say it.
So glad stuff like this can't happen in America....
Thursday, November 20, 2008
I came across this phrase, "coercive utopianism", the other day and I don't recall where, so I can't credit the site. But googling it shows that it's been around a long time, at least a couple of decades.
The phrase encapsulates very nicely why I am no longer a liberal, because contemporary Western liberalism, with its deep drive to enforce egalitarianism in every sector of life, is a subset of this.
Certainly Marxism is the most visible and rankly evil form of CU but the seven-pillared liberalism I have come to reject is another and it is in fact more global in its reach and aspirations. Marxism was about economics, the rich classes vs the poor classes. But PC CU has wider goals. And rather than being overtly and violently revolutionary, it is a species of Gramscian gradualism and proceeds not through force of arms drive by obvious anger and submerged envy but through corporate regulation driven by obvious ethics and submerged guilt.
It is rare that anyone who is vulnerable to the siren song of highminded liberal ethics would not eventually be snared in the sevenfold embrace of this discourse, or would at least resist it.
Then the lion shall be a guest of the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid; The calf and the young lion shall browse together, with a little child to guide them. The cow and the bear shall be neighbors, together their young shall rest; the lion shall eat hay like the ox. The baby shall play by the cobra's den, and the child lay his hand on the adder's lair. There shall be no harm or ruin on all my holy mountain; for the earth shall be filled with knowledge of the LORD, as water covers the sea. Isaiah 11
Let's take the Holy Trinity of evil for liberals: racism, sexism and classism. The oppression of nonwhites by whites, the oppression of females by males and the oppression of the poor by the rich. What more obvious examples of evil could there be?
A rich white male is just wrong. He has a lot of repenting to do as he breathlessly but humbly and selfrighteously supports a new world of multicultural harmony, feminist liberation and economic justice. Hello George Soros, John Kerry, etc.
The four other pillars of the ideology unfold from the first three. The evils of the rich white male unfold in his nation-state based colonialism, his dogmatic Christianity, his violently militarist armies and police forces, and his greedy earth-reaping consumerism. Transnational cooperation, openminded secularism, visionary pacifism, and post-speciesist green environmentalism are the cures for those evils.
Trouble is, none of these panaceas happen without coercion. Old style crusading liberals tried education and persuasion. New style liberals make rules, using the power of the state, both legislative and judicial (the latter where the former fails to cooperate) and of corporate entities like the university to force us all into a wonderful world of peace and justice.
For our own good, of course. And The One, now that he is going to be President, will show us how.
I wonder: is the strange sympathetic affinity that liberals have for Islam, despite its gross contradiction of liberalism's feminism, pacifism, secularism, etc. is that it too is a totalizing form of regulatory justice?
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
Uncommon Knowledge series with Peter Robinson,
Shelby Steele points out the irony of President-Elect Obama:
it is precisely because of race that he was elected.
Whites voted for him to absolve themselves from the burden
of white guilt and blacks voted for him to release themselves from
the stigma of black inferiority.
BTW, funny how he is always the First Black President
rather than what he really is, the First Mixed Race President.
On a symbolic level, that is just as powerful as his appearance
because the sexual union of black and white represents the
great fear of BOTH sides...something I learned a little bit
about in my nine-year relationship with a man who is black.
It's a shame both his parents aren't alive. It would be quite
something to have them standing next to each other
at his side on Inauguration Day.
My neighborhood is full of signs about Proposition "H8ate."
Chris Crain, with whom I agree on occasion, talks about leaving behind the current LGBT...did I get that alfabet soup right?...leadership and instead trying to achieve something that most Americans say they would be ok with, a federal civil unions law.
David Horowitz, considered Evil Incarnate because he is so firmly hostile to Islamization and the Left's support of it, tacit or overt, offered to start such a project with an unwilling Andrew Sullivan in 1996!
Monday, November 17, 2008
Impressive does not always equal attractive.
There's a guy at my gym, a trainer, who has a really fine physique, muscular and proportionate. Most any man would count himself happy to look like he does. And I look. I do. He's impressive.
But I have no desire to do more than look.
It's not that I find muscularity off-putting. I don't, usually. It's more idiosyncratic than that. He has a manner that I don't like, but even that is not all. Here are two images of muscular men. The first one I find very, very much a draw, the other one could be a new car (and it has nothing to do with his politics).
There's another guy at the gym with whom I have a very friendly, playful and flirty relationship. Totally different style from the first man I have mentioned. Very "alternative". But I find him wonderfully handsome, as well as powerfully built. And he is a very nice fella, bright, masculine, thoughtful and related. I like looking at him, too. And we once even considered having sex with each other, and would have, had external circumstances not intervened.
But even though his visuals and his personality are great, when he occasionally gives me a hug in the locker room, usually only clad in a towel, the tactile event is pretty, well, uneventful. Who knows what that's about?
On the other hand, a guy can be in shape but not coverboy material at all, but with the right chemistry, a certain combo of tactile and aural, for example, he can be teeth-grindingly attractive, even if not, on the surface, as impressive as the others.
The stages of grief and mourning are now part of pop psych culture. There's even a book that gave this post its title.
Elisabeth Kubler-Ross famously discerned five stages in how people deal with loss: denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance. "This can't be happening." "How could you do this to me?" "Maybe if I do this, then..." "I am so sad." "This is reality."
Of course, like most stage theories, it is too neat. It's a map, not the territory. My experience is that the five responses are real. But they are not linear. You don't go from a to b to c to d, leaving the prior stage behind. Grief is not a larva-pupa-butterfly kinda thing.
And if you are deep and sensitive, you can go through
more than one response at the same time,
sadness and anger both, for example.
But you mostly corkscrew around. And it is tiring and unpredictable. And duration is unpredictable. Trouble is, it's pretty mandatory when the loss has been real and significant, even though styles differ. Those who can short-cut through it are rare. And sometimes major unmourned losses come back to haunt us. As well, some people's griefs exceed the natural (which can itself, of course, be brutal) and become pathological.
The heart, the soul, the brain, even the body, have to digest loss.
The major benefit of this theory, as of many, is that it gives you a sense of normalcy at a time when you are likely to feel pretty crazy. The classic example is that it normalizes rage at a beloved person who has died, relieving the mourner of guilt.
I have a friend whose grieving style is unusual. After a major loss --the death of a beloved person or the death of a love-- there is three days of agony, which my friend describes as feeling like your skin is ripped off, over and over. But on the fourth day, a certain peace descends, and the original pain never returns. Sounds like a good deal to me.
The more usual is longer, less intense at every moment, but harder to shake. You can have moments of unhappy calm and then storms of rage or sadness that make your body itself feel damaged or attacked or sick.
And the best thing of all about grief --I am being ironic here-- is that the longer you live, the more of it you are likely to have. Especially in later life, more people die. And if you suffer, say, an emotional loss, even though you have the resilience of experience, you also know in your bones that you have way less time to make up for it.
Grief. Actually, it's not for dummies.
Sunday, November 16, 2008
(The State constitution, btw, is over 110 pages long. Yes. And has been amended well over 500 times. So it's not at all like amending the US Constitution, a mere 4 pages long and only 27 amendments.)
I said no, that it was a waste of time.
He said, with a friendly laugh, "What kind of a card-carrying fag are you?" I replied, without thinking, "I resigned." "But you can't, ever," he came back. "Watch me," says I.
I really do feel as if I have resigned. My erotic and emotional direction is fundamental and remains utterly unchanged and unrepented of. But my sense of identification with the "community" is fading all the time.
So, here are a few musings of an ex-fag.
Just because most people find it hard to grasp that the gender of marriage partners is accidental to marriage, after many millennia of universal experience, and don't see how the idea of same-sex marriage, barely a few decades old, suddenly constitutes a fundamental civil right, does not mean they are hateful bigots.
Bigot is now as useless a term as racist. Saw a T-shirt yesterday, "Bigotry is unnatural and perverse." Dude, what planet have you been living on? It is a natural as genocide.
Because I have friends who are directly affected by the issue, I have great sympathy for the disappointment felt. But stamping your feet and name-calling voters who won a legal vote...how is that much more than a tantrum. To say nothing of counter-productive. It only solidifies the opinion of people who fear what you are up to.
A local theater director, a Mormon, has had to resign his job because his contribution to the Yes on 8 campaign was exposed and publicized. Most gays say he deserved it and what did he expect, given the high rate of gay involvment in theatre. And if anyone who worked for a business with a conservative demographic was found to have given money to No on 8 and made to resign for it, would the gays say they had only themselves to blame? The hypocrisy is stunning.
One argument I hear is that the Equal Protection clause of the 1868 14th Amendment means that the government cannot restrict marriage to male-female couples. Presumably this would also validate polygamy. And I can see no reason why I could not marry my brother. Or all three of them.
But it also occurs to me that this makes the progressive income tax unconstitutional, since it penalizes the wealthy by a higher percentage of levy. No?
Friday, November 14, 2008
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
I love diverse cultures.
An Egyptian doc in Saudi Arabia got 5 years and 700 lashes for malpractice in treating a Saudi princess. He appealed. Now he has 7 years and 1500 lashes.
There are certain kinds of crimes for which this punishment might meet with my approval, but I suspect that the only crime here is lese-majeste.
Maybe they can show mercy and spread the lashings out over seven years. If they do it monthly, he just gets 17 a month. Not so bad. People at the Folsom Street Fair take a lot more than that.
But, since all cultures are equal*, I keep my Eurocentric white opinions to myself and just sit and appreciate the diversity. Way cool.
HT to Bookworm.
*Obviously I do not believe this, and the title of my post is sarcastic. Where would you rather live, Yemen or Canada?
Islam is a very problematic religion. It is theocratic, that is, from Muhammad's time onward, it makes no distinction between religion and any other sphere of life, including politics. Islam can only function completely in an Islamic state. And in that state, non-Muslims must be (at best) second-class. Sura 9.29 Furthermore, it is expansionist, missionary, global in its goal. In addition, because of the central and dominating power of the Divine Will as expressed in a completely perfect Holy Book, a sinless and perfect Prophet, and the long history of legal codes based on this, it has an extremely difficult time altering its shape.
Just one example. Muhammad owned slaves all his life, even as he praised liberating them as a good deed. He bought and sold them. So how can modern Muslims hold that slavery is wrong if their sinless prophet owned them? What gives them the right to assert a morality higher than Muhammad's?
An interesting and intelligent description of the patterns of Muslim history here.
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
"Good people sleep in peace in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf against those who would harm them."
Sunday, November 09, 2008
Speaking of homies...
My friend Bwana Bobaccio has led safaris to world-class townettes like Beatty, NV and Soledad, CA.
Now he mentions Calipatria, CA.
It would be a great place for the bruthas on the down-low. Especially since 4K of the 7K population is the all-male prison in town.
Blacks and Latinos seem unimpressed and not so willing to return the favor of their homo allies.
A bit of the ironic facts of life about Cal's Prop 8, which banned gay marriage by constitutional amendment.
Proposition 8 would have failed in the Golden State if it were up to white voters, who opposed it by a 51-49 ratio. What carried it over the top was enormous support from black voters, with about 70 percent of them backing it. Hispanics also supported the ban by significant, though smaller, margins...In other words, Obama had some major un-progressive coattails. The tidal wave of black and Hispanic voters who came out to support Obama voted in enormous numbers against what most white liberals consider to be the foremost civil rights issue of the day.
So next time PC gays and lesbians want to hate the Mormon bigots who stole their rights, remind them that it was people of color, Latinos for sure, but especially blacks, that they should hate.
Then listen to the sound of the crickets chirping for a minute before all the excuses start.
Gay marriage has gone down in flames by the electorate in 30 (!) states and in some of them same-sex unions of any kind are now banned.
Does the gay leadership not wonder if they need to change their strategy?
A change in gay leadership would be too much to hope for.
Thursday, November 06, 2008
Americans of African descent do in fact respond to the sun just as all humans do. Amazing! My ex, a black man of rather dark complexion, certainly looks darker after a day out in the sun. And blacks can get sunburned, too. It's human skin, not teflon. Are we not human, do we not tan?
(HT once again to Bobaccio.)
Berlusconi is apparently famous for "controversial" statements, such as, get this, remarking in the wake of 9/11 that Western civilization was superior to Islam.* Can you believe it? And right after 9/11....how insensitive is that?! The nerve.
Item B: Jerry Lewis (who knew he was still alive?) has apparently also been a bad boy. He recently described cricket as "a fag's game". Outraged outrageees demanded that he apologize "to gays, to cricketeers and to comedians". I suggest he be sent to the same re-education facility that Isaiah Washington went to, somewhere in Ecotopia.
Where will it end?
Item 3: *While we're at it, if you can't call one culture better than another...how can we have all the critical moral autopsies of how evil things were in the past? Does cultural politeness only apply to currently existing cultures? I mean, if all cultures are good, then they must have always been good, or at least equal. Or did all cultures just become equal only recently?
Or is the whole idea total bullshit?
I report, you decide. I'm off to spelunk for a few days.
In sum: The court system is a bad way to proceed here. And make an argument that respects your opponents' disagreement rather than calling them names.
Many people in the progressive and gay worlds live in a post-modern neighborhood, where nothing is fixed and everything is what you make of it. You can change your gender, for example, and go from being a boy to a girl if you want...even if you don't get the surgery!* I once worked in a place where the house Latina Lesbian everyone knew was an Italian girl with a boyfriend. But her choice of identity was publicly sacrosanct.
Trouble is, most humans live in another world, where things have natures, as they always have. A boy is not a girl. Real men do not have sex with other men. And marriage is something men and women do.
If you want to change their minds, court orders and name-calling seem pretty thin weapons against the archetypal drift.
*Although, as I have pointed out with some wonderment, you can't change your race.
Part of what confuses this old fella is that it is not uncommon now to hear that race is a fiction, but on the other hand that racisms is the original sin, and yet again that there is no way you can change your race, although you can change your gender, that being mere social construction.
Wednesday, November 05, 2008
In November, in the days to remember the dead
When air smells cold as earth
St. Malachy, who is very old, gets up,
Parts the thin curtains of trees and dawns upon our land.
His coat is filled with drops of rain, and he is bearded
With all the seas of Poseidon.
(Is it a crozier, or a trident in his hand?)
He weeps against the gothic window, and the empty cloister
Mourns like an ocean shell.
Two bells in the steeple
Talk faintly to the old stranger
And the tower considers his waters.
"I have been sent to see my festival," (his cavern speaks!)
"For I am the saint of the day.
Shall I shake the drops from my locks and stand in your transept,
Or, leaving you, rest in the silence of my history?"
So the bells rang and we opened the antiphoners
And the wrens and the larks flew up out of the pages.
Our thoughts became lambs. Our hearts swam like seas.
One monk believed that we should sing to him
Some stone-age hymn
Or something in the giant language.
So we played to him in the plainsong of the giant Gregory:
Oceans of Scripture sang upon bony Eire.
Then the last salvage of flowers
(Fostered under glass after the gardens foundered)
Held up their little lamps on Malachy's altar
To peer into his wooden eyes before the Mass began.
Rain sighed down the sides of the stone church.
Storms sailed by all day in battle fleets.
At five o'clock, when we tried to see the sun, the speechless visitor
Sighed and arose and shook the humus from his feet
And with his trident stirred our trees
And left down-wood, shaking some drops upon the ground.
Thus copper flames fall, tongues of fire fall
The leaves in hundreds fall upon his passing
While night sends down her dreadnought darkness
Upon this spurious Pentecost.
And the Melchizedek of our year's end
Who came without a parent, leaves without a trace,
And rain comes rattling down upon our forest
Like the doors of a country jail.
St. Malachy by Thomas Merton
Tuesday, November 04, 2008
I forced myself to tune into President One's speech and just caught enough to make me turn it off. The part where he stares into the sky before the adoring crowds and tell us that "what makes America great is that we can change." Thanks so much for thy condescending mercy unto us. Even in his praise, the turning of the knife is not far off.
You can bet I will not be catching his speeches much. Like I said, I think I'll spend more time on sex and religion and let the politics slide.
And meanwhile, maybe the Republicans, having taken a well-deserved whopping, can take their heads out of their asses and turn into a party worth paying attention to some day.
Well, I voted just now, got my sticker, and then Starbucks gave me free coffee for it. (HT to Bobaccio for the latter bit of info.)
The polling place is in the garage underneath the Castro Country Club, an old institution in the neighborhood which provides a cafe and social space for people in recovery. Only about a dozen folks were ahead of me in line and it took all of a half hour. One of the pollworkers is classic northern California boomer: a skinny Jewish woman with long kinky/curly grey hair flying free like a bed spring, big dark framed glasses, too much lipstick and an unconstructed cotton jacket and pants decorated in some generic ethnic fashion. Probably works for a non-profit.
Along with the Presidential choices, there's tons of local people running for school boards, etc. Since I know nothing about them, I left those blank.
And then there are the 34! propositions to vote on, 12 from the State and 22 from the City. I go over them and jot down my choices on a sheet of paper before I leave home. I mostly vote no, leave some blank and give my yes vote to a few.
With all the defects of the voting system, it is still moving to stand in line with your neighbors and give a shot at saying your yay or nay.
It is a republican ritual, at least on the Federal level, since there we vote for our electors by state rather than, as with the local and State propositions, by sheer democratic popularity. The Founding Fathers didn't like democracy very much. They felt it could turn into a mob. We call ourselves democratic, but mostly in the sense that we have a republic founded on democratic processes, but not limited to them.
A lot of folks have lost any sense of the United States as fundamentally a republic of states. So much of our polity is based on the powerful sense of local, that is, state, identity at the time of the Revolution and the framing. Jefferson regularly referred to Virginia as his "country".
That's why we have an electoral college, to give some balance to the union between states with large populations and those with small. I wonder that folks who find the electoral college so hard to understand don't seem to have a problem with the Senate.*
It's a similar principle.
In the House, power goes along with population, but then each state gets an equal footing in the Senate. Does it not strike the anti-college folks how strange it is that both California, with 30+ millions, and Wyoming, with just about 1/2 million, have 53 and 1 representatives in the House, respectively, but in the Senate, both have 2 senators? Doesn't seem fair if popular vote is all you care about.
But to me, it is inclusive! it promotes diversity! and is sensitive to the minority (aka small state) populations! by levelling the playing field! so that the Big Boys don't have total control! Eighteenth century affirmative action! that spreads the power around!!
I'm surprised Obama didn't think of it himself. Or that Al Gore didn't invent it.
Whatever happens today, God preserve the Republic.
*BTW, so state-focussed were the Founding Fathers that the original Constitution provides that the Senators be elected not by the people, but by their home state Legislatures. That was the way it was until after 1912!
Wandering onto a blog for the Spirit of Vatican 2 Catholic Community. Very funny satire of hip Catholicism in Amurrica by a Father Timothy Plarvik. Very amusing fella. For example:
As a flowering faith community, guided by the progressive spirit of the Second Vatican Council, we reach out to the diverse community from which we come. Respecting the dynamic tradition of the past we embrace change, foster and encourage each other to look beyond self and work for social justice and environmental stewardship, in solidarity with the marginalized in our society. Taking feminism as a framework for a equitable society and with conscience as our creed we confidently step out into the dawn of the third millenium.
- Liturgist: Maryann McGronk, BM
- Social Justice Minister: Ché Lovell
- Director of Ecumenical Inreach: Dr. Thomas Al-Fakkir
What's not to love? He really has the bullshit down pat. ROTFLMAO.
Here, by the way, is a serious mission statement for the Dominican Sisters of Amityville. I was taught by these gals of a previous generation, NY 1950's Irish Catholicism. Boy, they would not know what planet their descendants were on. Bolding is mine.
As members of the Dominican Congregation of the Holy Cross, we are active contemplatives, vowed and bonded members sharing a variety of gifts and cultures.
As prophetic witnesses in collaboration with others, we will call ourselves, the Church and society to credibility. We will be responsible members of the universe. We will promote the dignity of marginalized persons. We will reject violence in ourselves and in society in order that all Generations will grow and cherish life.
With the world as our frontier, we are open to the Spirit.
Did Father Tim really ghostwrite this?
Now I am not a very orthodox believer, but I don't have much faith in groups or people who try to be something they are not. It always winds up feeling fake or pathetic, no matter how much sincerity is involved. And I don't doubt these folks' sincerity. But, as I have always said, sincerity is a Protestant virtue, of minor use to Catholics.
That's why, despite my disagreements with the papacy, I sorta feel like the Pope should be, well, Catholic.
Just seems to fit better.
Monday, November 03, 2008
And apparently an unsavory character or two has been known to slip into the choirstalls. One monastery is taking no chances. Check out the items I've blocked. It's both kinda pathetic and kinda funny.
*Just in case you can't read the image:
Police background check
Credit report check
Sexual misconduct check
2 psychiatric evaluations
Jesus himself couldn't get into that abbey!
Saturday, November 01, 2008
If Barry Hussein O wins the presidency next week, now that it looks like he actually is an American citizen after all, there will be a temporary celebration on grounds of his half-blackness. Acerbic rightwinger Roger Kimball --who looks exactly what liberals expect conservatives to look like, btw--points out The One's pre-inauguration appeal:
Above all, he was (at least in part) black. What better receptacle for the hopes and dreams of liberal, guilt-infatuated America? What prodigies of expiation might be accomplished were this young, charismatic, half-black apostle of egalitarian change elected President of the United States?
"What prodigies of expiation." I like that. Heh. Yeah, the Nanny in Chief will call us out of our selfishness and meanness and spread the wealth around, overcoming the limitations the benighted Founding Fathers put in their old and unliving Constitution, while also settling the oceans and making the Europeans and the Muslims love us again.
Mr Kimball points out that, if elected, Hype and Change will soon have to deal with reality and folks may not be so happy. You can bet on that.
But on the expiation thing, which is the real issue in this election. If The One wins, will it really mean that America has atoned for its racial sins?
Of course not! Silly wabbit!
Just think of all the people who did NOT vote for The One. Clearly there is a vast pool of unrepentant racism there, something that liberals and blacks can point to in order to continue the passion play narrative.
And when The One is criticized or blocked in office, will that not prove the enduring evil of Amerikkkan racism? Of course it will. Obama will become the First Victim, ever to be protected from the Eternal Racism of America. Thank you, Rev. Wright.
We've had "The First Black This and That" processing ad infinitum since Jackie Robinson over a half-century ago: mayors, governors, supreme court judges, generals, CEOs, Oscar winners, etc. etc. As the procession grows, however, the narrative becomes, counterintuitively, even more compelling and necessary, the more the evidence mounts that it is wrong. Facts do nothing to kill off the narrative of Black Victimization. Nothing will.
Well, why should it? What would blacks gain by giving it up? And how would liberals prove they were liberal without it?
Much of the black community in America is a mess, despite the unprecedently massive legal and societal changes in America about race in one generation. Seventy percent of black babies are now born out of wedlock, to be raised by single mothers. And the correlation between that scenario and a messed up life is very strong. Forty four percent of prisoners are black, and yet the black population is about twelve percent. Blacks do poorly in school, with high dropout and low graduation rates, even with affirmative action. Forty five percent of murder victims are black. And they are killed by other blacks more than ninety percent of the time. And too many of the lionized young black men who achieve breathtakingly fast and powerful fame, money and visibility through sports and thug music turn out badly. Etc.
If blacks gave up the Racist Victimization narrative --which even the Obamas, with their status and education and wealth and power, cling to-- what would explain the mess?
If it's not the fault of Whitey and his increasingly hard to find and therefore even more insidiously hidden, disguised and deepseated racism, what would explain it?
The answer is too terrifying to contemplate. What if most of the problems that infect the black community are the doing of...the members of the black community?
One of the hardest things to do in therapy is to get the patient to take actual responsibility for their own role in creating the situation that they complain about. No fun, believe me. I've been there. But it is very maturing and eventually liberating. Cause if you realize you can create a bad situation, you can also create a better one. It's called growing up.
But it's easier to be a victim and have someone else to blame. And Obama, if elected, will not put an end to it. On the contrary, since he believes it, along with his nasty wretched wife, it will continue to annoy the hell out of grown up people who have long since ceased to have any sympathy with it.