Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Monday, December 30, 2013

My Soul Bro






Mark Twain --whose mordantly hilarious stories I am now listening to while at the gym-- remarks thusly in the "Prefactory" to his 1872 Roughing It.


Yes, take it all around, there is quite a good deal of information in the
book. I regret this very much; but really it could not be helped:
information appears to stew out of me naturally, like the precious ottar
of roses out of the otter. Sometimes it has seemed to me that I would
give worlds if I could retain my facts; but it cannot be. The more I calk
up the sources, and the tighter I get, the more I leak wisdom.
Therefore, I can only claim indulgence at the hands of the reader, not
justification.



I feel ya, bro. I feel ya.

--

TechnoWoes

Quicken.

Version 2011 worked fairly well, although it refused to download transactions directly from the bank, as it promised.

Version 2014 refused either to download them from the bank OR from my computer, effectively making the software useless, unable to import any new information. A visit to the forums shows that I am not alone in this stunning failure.

So I removed 2014 and reinstalled 2011.

Which now also refuses new imports of files from my computer as well as showing running balances from the first 10 months that are wildly off.

FU Quicken.

Update: Quicken's gone. Installed AceMoney. So far, so good.

---

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Sic Aut Non

Should I read this book?


The author is a follower of Ken Wilber's Integral Model, which is A Grand Theory of Everything. Lover of systems though I be, Wilber has always put me off. Even more of a Five than I am.

Gilles Herrada's major point, that (male) homosexuality lacks a mythic meaning --to say nothing of an evolutionary reason-- is pretty true. And reviews indicate that he was wise enough to describe the problem without offering a quicky myth of his own.

Well, we'll see. Clever book cover, though.

PS Update. After reading through the Kindle sample, I may buy the 400+ page book. The writer asks very good questions indeed and shares some of my very dim views on gay culture and identity. Although clearly extremely intelligent and educated, --a biological researcher by trade--his English style should have been edited to remove the annoying European smell in his prose. As well, having seen a few minutes of him on YouTube, I have to say that I have a distinct dislike for him. His accent --a combo of French and Spanish?-- and way of speaking, especially the EuroIntellectual habit of combining faux-humility with absolutist pretensions, brings back unpleasant memories of graduate school. And he occasionally indulges in the stupidest mental rituals of current PCism, apologizing for being a man and therefore unable to fully include lesbianism in his book. God, I hate that shit.

(Reminds me of a prof I had in grad school. I had found one of his books extremely helpful and enlightening. Took a course from him and came to loathe him as a man, a petty, controlling and narcissistic tyrant. As I later came to see, he was a classical Leftist, shouting the narrative of liberation and equality while his misanthropic shadow dominated his personal life. Sometimes it's wise to keep ideas and character quite separate. Never could read that book again.)

Herrada's thoughts on the Pope and gay marriage are quite unusual for their intelligence and non-hysteria. He even comes close (by a different route) to Jack Donovan's reasons for rejecting it: it is a false archetypal fit. Or as ExC terms it, 'straight drag'. A good sign.

Pluses and minuses considered, since Kindle books are so cheap, I will look through it.

---

Saturday, December 28, 2013

A Canuckistan actor




































Stephen Huszar, one beautiful dude.

Delectatio morosa

Is Maureen Dowd Obsolete? - Taki's Magazine:

A not so gentle reminder about reality to the first woman who ever made me utter the C-word,
that men create and maintain the world.

(And although the writer doesn't say it, all those things he lists are mostly the work of White men.)


HT to Mr Freeze


'via Blog this'

Friday, December 27, 2013

Advice for the Pope

Francis the Talking Pope should take to heart the idea propounded by the authors of Freakonomics:
"If morality represents how people would like the world to work then economics shows how it actually does work."
And then he should shut up more often.

This is clearly a man in love with his own good intentions. He's very clear (and wrong) about "unfettered capitalism" leaving "the poor" with nothing. (Pretty well anything they do have is a product of capitalism, btw.) But he seems to lack any critical facility at all when it comes to the results of his own reckless and romantic embrace of anybody with a toothache, while blaming "the rich and powerful" for their suffering. Cartoon thinking.

Sounds like a stereotypical Argentinian.
Evita Peron in a cassock.

--

The Most Foolish People On The Planet, continued

and continued and continued...

Church Displays Bleeding Trayvon Martin Nativity Scene

'via Blog this'

Thursday, December 26, 2013

My morning misogyny

Watching how the West is letting itself simple be talked into dismantling and erasing itself, I wondered if such an unprecedented form of cultural suicide could have taken place if it had remained an all-male polity.

Certainly its current insanity could never have set in without the leadership and the compliance of far too many White Males. But if only White Males had political power, as was the case until almost the 20th century, if there had been no caving in to the Suffragettes and the 19th amendment had never happened...

could an all-male political order be talked into suicide?

(Unless you interpret the acquiescence of the once all-male political order in female suffrage to be, by itself, that suicide...)

Or does it require the destabilizing and sentimentalizing presence of politically empowered females for this to happen?

---

Post-Christendom

Faculty at Jesuit university vote for continued abortion coverage

Wymyn rule.

'via Blog this'

Mr Steyn Opeynz

Continuing about the Duck Dynasty thing, he references his (and Ezra Stein's) battles against the Canuckistan "Human Rights" commissars and remarks on the importance of pushing back against the hectoring:
The alternative is to let the control-freaks shrivel the bounds of public discourse remorselessly so that soon enough you lack even the words to mount an opposing argument.
This is the end result of the MarxistPC push, that you will have so effectively and reflexively self-censored your own mind that "you lack even the words to mount an opposing argument."

Bingo.


And let me repeat (as I am wont to do), that this same reflexive self-censorship has been so deeply internalized on other matters --like race and gender, for starters-- that the angry Right does not even know it is fighting a rear-guard skrimish in a war where it has already surrendered, and happily.

--






Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Typical

As ExCathedra has often noted.

Instapundit: " Interesting that the two parts of American society that are most loudly critical of inequality and exploitativeness in American society — Hollywood and academia — are the two parts of American society where savage inequality and exploitativeness are most pronounced."

'via Blog this'

PS, I would add that the mainstream media --capitalist enterprises all-- are not known for their caring and inclusive cultures. I believe that cutthroat is a more apt modifier.

Christmas 2013


Monday, December 23, 2013

OBTW

In all the years since my turn from liberalism to The Right, not once, not once, has a liberal ever asked me why, what made me change my mind.

A few of them have told me why --purported family pressure, increasing age, suggestions of mental illness, my WhiteMaleness--- but not a one of these open-minded and intellectually sophisticated creatures has ever shown the slightest curiosity about my reasons.

---

Politics, sex, and maybe religion

While doing other chores, enjoying Tremors 3.

Primary reason? Shawn Christian. A guilty pleasure. (That's the sex part.)




[Now if Shawn had played opposite Fred Ward in the original Tremors, instead of stupid Kevin Bacon...that would have been, well, slash-fiction indecent.]


Like Mars Attacks, this little B-movie subverts its own foreground by making the crazed paranoid right-wing survivalist, well, right. Add the fact that he's played by the same guy who was the uber-lib Boomer parent on Family Ties...And that the Feds who seek to intervene are wrong (and die). Very enjoyable. (That's the politics part.)

As for the religion part, well, it's the environmentalist background which the film makes fun of. Federal regs would evict all the people from their homes if it meant protecting a hostile prehistoric man-eating carnivore.

And then, there's Shawn Christian.

(Hey, I said I was infallible, not deep...)
---


Mr Whittle is irked

The Victim Minorities Rule, continued

The latest kerfuffle over the Duck Dynasty's theological attitude toward homosexuality is just one more instance of how The Law gets played out. Mark Steyn, as usual, puts it well.

The Right is yelling that this a war on Christianity. True enough. But it is part of a larger scheme that they have bought into almost as much as their Progressive opponents. They want the Duck Dynasty patriarch to have the freedom to claim a Biblical objection to same-sex sex. But they would be joining the cultural elites on the jury for an opinions he might have about Blacks, or women, or any of the other Sacred Victim groups that we must never ever make feel bad.

Once your group achieves Sacred Victim status in the eyes of the Progressive taste-makers, you are henceforth immune to criticism, of any kind. Any refusal to embrace and celebrate you is taken as one step away from a pogrom. The age of sticks and stones is long past.

You are no longer allowed to have a negative attitude toward homosexuality or gay marriage (even if you distinguish between behavior and people).

But it's been a long long time since the same Law has been in place in regard to the other Sacred Victim Groups: Jews, Blacks and all Peeps of Color, Wymyn, the Differently Abled, Special Needs Kids, Mohammedans, Illegal Aliens...I mean, Undocumented Future Americans, etc.

And the "LGBTQ Community" has achieved that status. No matter how powerful they become, they can always play the victim card. 

What do all these isms and phobias mean except that any un-approved attitudes, beliefs or actions in their regard are pathologized and criminalized (either socially or actually in law)? No matter how good an argument you can make for them or how factual they are.

"Tolerance" really means the imposition of an intolerantly absolute set of doctrinal ideas from which no deviation is tolerated. Mr. Orwell, welcome home.

You must accept and celebrate all the Sacred Victim Groups --and a good dollop of regret and apology is always a nice touch. 

Otherwise, just Shut Up.

---


Sunday, December 22, 2013

Immaculate Misconceptions*

Christmas, Americans and the Virgin Birth:

"A 2008 Barna Poll found that 75 percent of Americans believe the Virgin Birth, including 15 percent of atheists."

Makes ya wonder about the value of polling.

To say nothing of anything like human consistency.

'via Blog this'

*BTW, the Virgin Birth of Christ and the Immaculate Conception of Mary are two quite distinct items: the immaculate conception refers to the conception by Mary's parents, Joachim and Anna, of their daughter. She was conceived in the normal way, but bore no Original Sin. Her later conception and birth-giving of Jesus was virginal; no male involved.  (Why let all that theological education go to waste?)

The particularity of time

Even though the coming of winter in a place like San Francisco is more like a brisk fall, with flowers, the chilling of the air and the increasing darkness is fundamental to my sense of Christmas.

Sentimental I can occasionally be and Christmas brings it out. Thick with memory. This is the image I use as my screensaver these days:



It's an emotional memory rather than a physical recollection. The contrasts are essential: warmth and light in a world that's dark and cold. And the silence that comes with snow, but for the crunch under your feet. Firewood burning. And the steely glow of stars in a winter sky. Music, cooking smells, a sense of safety. The stopping of the world so that eternity and time can intersect.
---



Saturday, December 21, 2013

Nostalgia in the strangest places

Half watching the very gory and really kinda funny and somewhat disturbing Joss Whedon horror satire The Cabin In The Woods, I heard a piece of music on the soundtrack that I had not thought of in many a year, REO Speedwagon's Roll With The Changes.

It was one of several tunes that, back in the 70's and 80's, used to turn old Ex Cathedra into a dancin' fool. Almost impossible for me to sit still and not boogey (as we used to say.)

Happy driving energy.

REO Speedwagon: Roll With The Changes.

Chicago: Feelin' Stronger Every Day

Jay Geils Band: Freeze Frame

The Pointer Sisters: Neutron Dance and I'm So Excited


Even hearing them now, makes me smile and move.

===

Winter Solstice 2013


Monday, December 16, 2013

Gap

Not much posting of late. Been doing other things.

But Fear Not.  I'd like to assure my readers that I remain as declinist as ever, not one whit more optimistic about the end result of the US and Western civilizational implosion.

Republicans are still, as always, feckless pussies.

Obama is still an alien virus whose double election reveals the rot in the American electorate.

Universal suffrage is an insane idea. Derived from the frankly incredible notion of universal equality.

Francis The Talking Pope still blathers on. And on and on. Un chiacchierone.

Whites are still The Most Foolish People On the Planet.


Just wanted to re-assure you.

---




Mandela's wake

The Truth About South Africa: White Extermination In South Africa:

'via Blog this'

Sunday, December 15, 2013

What am I missing?



I mean, if Time thinks he's so cool...
why do I think he's a muddled, irresponsible
grandstanding loudmouth?


---

Storyteller vs Writer

To make my cardio on the gym treadmill less tedious, I am listening to the whole Harry Potter series. I am very familiar with and fond of the movies, so I thought I'd see how the two genres differ.

Two notes.

JK Rowling is a much better storyteller than she is a writer. She finds it hard to describe a feeling, emotional or physical, without some over-the-top simile. People are never just angry. They are overcome with a rage like red hot lava gushing up from the pit of their bellies. It gets almost funny after a while.

All the characters are less likeable in print than they are on screen. The three cute kids in the movie do not match the unappealing trio in the book. Harry is a far more flawed hero: full of doubt, extremely short of temper and likely to distrust and resent people who are trying to do him good.
His relationship to Dumbledore in the book is stormy and testy. Ron is bipolar. And Hermione Granger is an insufferable prig for about 90% of the time. Ginny Weasley, however, is a far more interesting and engaging character than her mannikin on the screen, with Harry's attraction to her much more developed.

Well, back to the treadmill.

---




Saturday, December 14, 2013

Diabolical Liberalism

The great thing is to direct the malice to his immediate neighbours whom he meets every day and to thrust his benevolence out to the remote circumference, to people he does not know. 
The malice thus becomes wholly real and the benevolence largely imaginary. 

 A line from The Screwtape Letters, CS Lewis' fictional account of the experienced demon Screwtape writing advisory epistles to the apprentice devil Wormwood on how to bring a soul to damnation.

Leapfrog morality, telescopic philanthropy.

---


Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Cravings

I've been cutting back on the carbs for the last while and one funny outcome is that I start to have cravings for things I normally don't eat, or at least don't dream about:

Cheescake and brandy.
Oatmeal with raisins.
Vanilla ice cream with chocolate sauce.

--


Saturday, December 07, 2013

Another gay movie

Saltwater.

I watched it because of Ian Roberts. I confess.



Former Australian rugby player. A giant. And that combo of testosterone and crooked smile and sweet good humor. Not a great actor, but charm oozing out through the screen. At least IMHO.

The plot's about two guys with bad timing. And they are both completely unfabulous. A plus.



Another other thing I liked about it: when the two principals, Mr Roberts and one Ronnie Kerr (who also wrote it), finally fall into bed, it's very recognizable real stuff. Amid all the friendly mayhem there's a lot of smiling.

For that alone, worth a watch.

---

Structural engineering


Mangina 101

Boehner: GOP Men Need Sensitivity Training on Women's Issues:

'via Blog this'

The Whites of Dover Beach

The slavish celebrations of Nelson Mandela remind me of how many heroes now adored by the West are its enemies. Other saints like MLK and Ghandi.

And of how uncelebrated are those who brought down the Communists. A major event in world history which is treated as if it never happened.

But now I only hear
Its melancholy, long, withdrawing roar,
Retreating, to the breath
Of the night-wind, down the vast edges drear
And naked shingles of the world.

...

Update. South African expatriate Collin Liddel, a very Right guy, has some telling words about the power that the Mandelas and the Obamas of this world have: their capacity to attract the projections of the Whites, who, in the end, put them where they are.

A great line:
here at least Mandela was in the right, for in a war between races there are no civilians, there are no individuals, there are no numbers to be put into the Grand Golden Humanitarian Scales (presumably kept in a cabinet in the Hague and periodically polished by the tears of liberals, Christians, and internationalists).

==

Wednesday, December 04, 2013

A pleasant change

A British TV series trying to recreate life for tenant farmers on monastery lands during the early Tudor period, prior to Henry VIII, who despoiled the monasteries to enrich the Crown and then parceled off the land to the aristocracy.

What's pleasant about it is that it is not cynical and flip about early 16th century life, including religion.

It's common for Brit (and other Western) programs on foreign cultures to be obsequiously accomodating and worshipful, while stories about the Western past, especially the Christian Middle Ages, take the contemptuous tone of a smart-assed high schooler.

This is a pleasant change.

I am fascinated by programs that make clear the myriad ways in which our ancestors had to live without so many things we take for granted.

(But, of course, in re-creating the Pentecost market day in a rural area, we have a Black woman as part of the scene...Yeah, England in 1500 was choc a bloc with African farmers..)

--

TR again

Teddy Roosevelt, an extraordinary man and a somewhat ambiguous President --as pretty well all of them have been-- made a statement about being American. He condemned hyphenated Americans and said that without the common bonds of culture and citizenship, the country would become merely "a polyglot boarding-house."

A prophet in spite of himself.

"Multicultural" America: A polyglot boarding-house.

--

Francis the Talking Pope

continued.

One of the many gems in his recent "apostolic exhortation" Evangelii Gaudium

Faced with disconcerting episodes of violent fundamentalism, our respect for true followers of Islam should lead us to avoid hateful generalisations, for authentic Islam and the proper reading of the Koran are opposed to every form of violence.
Moron. He's about as qualified to talk on Islam as he is on economics.

---


Tuesday, December 03, 2013

B-actors

seem to be favorites of mine. Here's a fine example.


Chris Bruno

--

Blasphemer!

Bob Dylan charged with 'public insult and inciting hate' in France over Croatia remarks - CSMonitor.com:

Multiculturalism is the foundational myth of the modern secular state's religion. Consequently, it treats any honest or non-submissive race-related speech by Whites as forms of blasphemy.

What we once called The Free World is far less so than it was during the Cold War.



'via Blog this'

Bi-coastal

I'm returning to the West Coast this afternoon after 9 days on the East, for family Thanksgiving. A very nice time. They're a good bunch, my family, and very good to me. I am very lucky.

I have not always felt so comfortable among my kin. But one think I have learned, and try to help some of my family-conflicted patients see, is that the way things are is not the way things need always be. Families resist change, but they (including me, of course) can change over time. And sometimes for the better.

I remember remarking to my mom some years ago that we seemed to be getting along more easily, not making each other irritable and unhappy the way we used to. She replied very matter of factly, Well, we're both too old for that stuff. Takes too much energy. Nature sometimes accomplishes what grace cannot.

Most of the time I was out on the North Fork, rural-ish and pleasant and highly Caucasian.  I am aware not only of the cold but of the leafless trees, something you rarely see in SF.




Sunset comes only 20 minutes earlier than on the West Coast, but with the flat landscape and the trees, it seems darker and greyer. Went bowling with a sister and bro in law; new lanes look like a Las Vegas casino. Very enjoyable.

My time in NYC, well, it just continues to feel like a place I don't belong and would never want to live again.



I suppose that's natural in some ways. We've both changed in the decades I have lived elsewhere.

NYC is not really about the "diversity" it trumpets and worships. It's about co-existence, a horse of a very different color. People of all kinds mix on the streets and in other public spaces, but at the end of the day they go home to places where people like them live together, by race and class. That's how humans are. And as the LGBTQ types like to say, Deal with it.






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