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"The nearer to the church, the further from God."- John Heywood

The Genius Of The Crowd Poem by Charles Bukowski

there is enough treachery, hatred violence absurdity in the average
human being to supply any given army on any given day

and the best at murder are those who preach against it
and the best at hate are those who preach love
and the best at war finally are those who preach peace

those who preach god, need god
those who preach peace do not have peace
those who preach peace do not have love

beware the preachers
beware the knowers
beware those who are always reading books
beware those who either detest poverty
or are proud of it
beware those quick to praise
for they need praise in return
beware those who are quick to censor
they are afraid of what they do not know
beware those who seek constant crowds for
they are nothing alone
beware the average man the average woman
beware their love, their love is average
seeks average

but there is genius in their hatred
there is enough genius in their hatred to kill you
to kill anybody
not wanting solitude
not understanding solitude
they will attempt to destroy anything
that differs from their own
not being able to create art
they will not understand art
they will consider their failure as creators
only as a failure of the world
not being able to love fully
they will believe your love incomplete
and then they will hate you
and their hatred will be perfect

like a shining diamond
like a knife
like a mountain
like a tiger
like hemlock

their finest art

gerardvanderleun : August 27, 15  |  Your Say (0)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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"A second time? why? man of ill star,
Facing the sunless dead and this joyless region?
Stand from the fosse, leave me my bloody bever
For soothsay."

And I stepped back,
And he stong with the blood, said then: "Odysseus
Shalt return through spiteful Neptune, over dark seas,
Lose all companions."
-- Ezra Pound: Canto I

"So here I am, in the middle way, having had twenty years,
Twenty years largely wasted, the years of l'entre deux guerres
Trying to learn to use words, and every attempt
Is a wholly new start, and a different kind of failure
Because one has only learnt to get the better of words
For the thing one no longer has to say, or the way in which
One is no longer disposed to say it. And so each venture
Is a new beginning, a raid on the inarticulate
With shabby equipment always deteriorating
In the general mess of imprecision of feeling,
Undisciplined squads of emotion. And what there is to conquer
By strength and submission, has already been discovered
Once or twice, or several times, by men whom one cannot hope
To emulate -- but there is no competition --
There is only the fight to recover what has been lost
And found and lost again and again: and now, under conditions
That seem unpropitious. But perhaps neither gain nor loss.
For us, there is only the trying. The rest is not our business."
-- T. S. Eliot: "East Coker"

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Between the windows of the sea
Where lovely mermaids flow
And nobody has to think too much
About Desolation Row

Yes, I received your letter yesterday
(About the time the doorknob broke)
When you asked how I was doing
Was that some kind of joke?
All these people that you mention
Yes, I know them, they’re quite lame
I had to rearrange their faces
And give them all another name
Right now I can’t read too good
Don’t send me no more letters, no
Not unless you mail them
From Desolation Row
-- Desolation Row Bob Dylan

Vanderleun : August 27, 15  |  Your Say (2)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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School slate Used by Australian school students up until the mid 20th century, the slate has a black flat honed surface in a sturdy timber frame. It is light, slim and portable and can be used with chalk for writing alphabetic text, performing calculations or for free illustration. Characters and illustrations can be saved indefinitely but should the slate be required for another image or text the existing work must be erased using a wet or dry cloth. This can be done ad infinitum.

gerardvanderleun : August 26, 15  |  Your Say (7)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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In which Clarence Clemmons proves once and for all there is no rock and roll song that can't be made great with a saxophone.

One, two, three, four!

The highway's jammed with broken heroes on a last chance power drive
Everybody's out on the run tonight
But there's no place left to hide
Together Wendy we can live with the sadness
I'll love you with all the madness in my soul
H-Oh, Someday girl I don't know when
We're gonna get to that place
Where we really wanna go
And we'll walk in the sun
But till then tramps like us
Baby we were born to run

Yes, 1975. What can I say? Turn around, a decade's gone. Sometimes even four.... but then.... again....

Don't run back inside, darling, you know just what I'm here for
So you're scared and you're thinking that maybe we ain't that young anymore

Show a little faith, there's magic in the night
You ain't a beauty but, hey, you're alright

Oh, and that's alright with me....

Click Here to Continue
gerardvanderleun : August 25, 15  |  Your Say (16)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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Note: Received in email from commenter Fat Man

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News got you down? Stock Market crashing? Hillary? The Donald? Fortunately, there is some good news. Sometimes the good guys win. Case in point: this week's story about the three Americans who tackled the Muzzie with the AK on the train in France.

Americans Who Thwarted French Train Attack Were Childhood Friends - WSJ

"The three American men whom French authorities credit with disrupting a potential terror attack on a Paris-bound high-speed train Friday are childhood friends who had all attended California’s Freedom Christian School and often played military games together growing up.
"Airman First Class Spencer Stone, Oregon National Guard member Alek Skarlatos, and college student Anthony Sadler were tourists trekking through Europe on a planned three-week vacation. They will return home as decorated heroes, following a scheduled visit with French President François Hollande at Élysée Palace, after authorities say they bravely took down a man they say was armed with boxcutters and several guns. ...
“We believe God’s providential will worked its way out,” said Mr. Sadler’s father, Anthony Sadler, a Baptist pastor."

But wait, it gets better.

Look at their pictures.

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Three good looking American kids. Two white, one black. Boyhood friends.

What does this have to do with politics? Simple.

Obama is not just wrong about America. He and his hench-creatures are evil. They are trying to tribalize us, so that they can divide us and rule a demoralized and defeated country forever.

This is what we must fight.

The way to win is to not accept tribalization. The way to win is to state that these three young men are what America is really all about.

This needs to be our message: "We are Americans, We are neighbors, We are friends, We are brothers. This is what makes us the exceptional nation. This is what makes us the Last Best Hope of Earth. We will unite and we defeat America's enemies wherever we find them."

#AllLivesMatter. #GodBlessAmerica

"Crown thy good with brotherhood, from sea to shining sea."

The way to win is not to nurture grievances and salve them with unfulfillable promises. The way to win is to call people to be their highest and best selves.

Republican Presidential Candidates: Forget Hillary. Forget the Donald. Forget Obama. The ads, the speeches, write themselves. Appeal to to our highest selves. Draw the contrast with the tactics of tribalism and division. Don't be afraid to be sappy and sentimental.

gerardvanderleun : August 25, 15  |  Your Say (12)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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It all seems so quiet and hushed and strangely calm now that the shooting has stopped and only the rubble remains.

4:35-- The entrance to the Führerbunker and the surrounding ruins. The inspection of the junk-filled ditch where the monster burned in a pool of gasoline.

And then the aftermath.

gerardvanderleun : August 24, 15  |  Your Say (10)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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American Studies

Yesterday I heard of a young mother who came downstairs early in the morning to find her fifth-grade son dressed for school but flat on his back in the middle of the living room staring in despair at the ceiling.

MOM: "What on Earth do you think you're doing?"

BOY: "I can't do it. I just can't go to school any more."

We all know how that small strike ended. Management made an offer ("Go to school or else."), and the union of one caved in with a few plaintive "But mom's.... "

I first thought that there was rough justice in that. After all, the thought of actually going on a ten-minute "I-won't-go-to-school" strike never would have entered my ten-year old mind. If it had I would not have heard the dreaded promise, "Wait until your father gets home." No, I would have heard the thermonuclear announcement, "I'm calling your father at work and telling him to come home right now." That one always alerted me that I had only one half-hour to get my affairs in order.

Today, after mulling the lie-down strike a little more, it seems to me there's more than a little to be said on the side of the fifth-grader's strike. After twenty years of schooling and more than thirty on the day shift, those early grades seem -- looked at through society's grubby glasses -- to be an idyllic time. After all, weren't they?

No real worries. No problems with the opposite or the same sex. No goals other than getting to Christmas break, Easter break or the long and endless summer. No money to make. No money, in fact, to speak of at all. All your expenses covered. No taxes. No sense of mortality. In short, the lost and golden land of childhood. We all think of it, once far removed from it, as some distant Edenic idyll.

But if we try and shift our point of view a bit, and if we try to remember all those things the haze of our twice-told childhood fairy-tales hides from us, we might see it -- just a bit and just for an instant -- from the point of view of the fifth-grade boy flat on his back in the living room staring at the ceiling in utter despair.

Here he lays. He's been going to this job of his for as long as he can remember. Unlike my experience which didn't start until kindergarten, today's boy has probably been working in the education industry since age 3.

They started him out on basic blocks and why he shouldn't nail somebody who took his cookie. Those are hard lessons. How to stack something up so it doesn't collapse in a heap at the first shudder in the earth. How to "share" your very limited and very personal resources. Why you don't just whack anyone who irritates you with the nearest blunt object.

These are basic lessons, and we forget how hard they are. Some of us don't learn them at all. Those people are either in prison, assembling bombs, or CEO of a Fortune 500 company.

Still, that's your entry level position in the educational-industrial complex at age 3. It's all downhill from there.

For years you get up at an ungodly hour and don't even get a chance to read the paper. Plus, no coffee at all. Not. A. Drop.

You are then pushed out of your home and either driven to your "office-complex" by a cranky chauffeur with complete control over you, or you get to ride with a few dozen of your more-or-less peers with different ideas of hygiene and levels of intelligence in a shaking tin box with no seatbelts, driven by some of the least intelligent members of your community. I'd be a nervous wreck by the time I got to the office, I'll tell you.

Once you do get to the office, your time to just goof off is extremely limited. No leisurely stints by the water cooler for you. No coffee cart with tasty pastries coming by after only an hour. Bladder issue? Raise your hand and get a note. Other than that you are never alone.

You get one break out in the dirt, with, I might add, no coffee. A couple of hours later you get a quick hit of really bad food that is the same this Wednesday as it was last Wednesday. After that, it's back to your office where they don't even have a little cube for you, but slam you together with 15 to 30 other slaves to the clock in a room fit only for 10.

In some huge gesture to your youth, they let your out of this joint at 3 in the afternoon. They tell you it's a "school day," but if you've been up since 7 and out at three, that's a full eight hours in my book.

Oh, and no chatting with your friends. Yes, you, pipe down. If not it's off to the CEO's antechamber for a quick and humiliating performance review. Daily if you don't snap out of it. If you really don't snap out of it, we're calling your father AND your mother to come here from work right now.

Perhaps you get to enjoy the mastery of your skills? Don't make me laugh. Master one thing and boom here comes another.

Comprehend fractions? That was so last week. Now do long division. Made a volcano that blew up on cue last week? Big deal. This week you are going to construct an Algonquin winter lodge diorama from scratch --- and it better have plenty of cotton balls for snow.

One o'clock. Your project for this hour is the basic structure of the cell. Okay, two o'clock, everybody stand up and turn to the person next to them and say, "Hola, como se llama..."

Day in day out, week in week out, year in year out ... you trudge off to this room crammed to the brim with bird's nests, flash cards, trilobites, pilgrim hats, Indian headresses, drawings and paintings in which the proportion of the head to the body is never right, but looks for all the world like an exhibit by demented Fauvists with no drawing skills whatsoever and a very garish color sense. Twice a day, everybody in this room is let out. Is it any wonder they run screaming into the sunshine?

You have no veto whatsoever over your co-workers, your working conditions, your hours, or your choice of when to do what tasks. Everyone does the same tasks at the same time for 55 minutes and then it is on to something new.

Did I mention the fact that you can't quit? If you try to quit they send the Gestapo to your home and track you down and haul you back.

There is, however, judgment. Oh, the judgment. Constantly tested. Constantly graded. Constantly up for criticism with your single allowable plea being, "Guilty. But with an explanation." It's like an annual review every week with no raises, ever.

And nothing, nothing you do, is ever quite good enough, is it? Except for that four-eyes up in the front row who always gets it done perfectly. No mistakes ever. You know, the kid who will be pantsed and then smothered with 30 co-workers backpacks out behind the backstop one rainy afternoon.

By the fifth grade, you've been in this dead end job for about seven years. If you're lucky, your pay has gone from a dollar to ten dollars a week. Get straight A's and you might get a bonus of one day at the local "Magic Kingdom." Then it's, "Okay, break's over. Everybody back on their heads."

I don't know about you, but that sounds like one of the worst jobs in the world. In fact, the more I think about it the more I want to lie down with that kid in the middle of the living room and say, "I just can't do it any more either."

It took me about 30 years to get to that point. I guess I'm not as smart as I was in the fifth grade. In fact, I'm sure of it.

Vanderleun : August 24, 15  |  Your Say (38)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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I don't know about you but I could watch fiddle playing like this for days.....

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Shenandoah: One of America's most popular folk songs, is known as a "short haul shanty" and is said to be the true story of a white trader who courted the daughter of an Indian chieftain. The song apparently originated among American or Canadian voyagers on the Missouri River - sometimes called the "Miz-zoo".

SHENANDOAH

The old Miz-zoo has friendly waters
Away! You rolling river
The Indians camp along its border
Away! We're bound away
'Cross the wide Missouri.

A white man loved an Indian lady
Away! You rolling river
The daughter of Chief Shenandoah
Away! We're bound away
'Cross the wide Missouri.

Oh Shenandoah, I long to hear you
Away! You rolling river
Oh Shenandoah, I long to hear you
Away! We're bound away
'Cross the wide Missouri.

Oh Shenandoah, I love your daughter
Away! You rolling river
I bring you tools and fire water
Away! We're bound away
'Cross the wide Missouri.

'Tis seven years since first I knew her
Away! You rolling river
She's in full bloom for a man to woo her
Away! We're bound away
'Cross the wide Missouri.

Oh Shenandoah, with gifts I'm laden
Away! You rolling river
Give me the hand of this young maiden
Away! We're bound away
'Cross the wide Missouri.

Then Shenandoah said - Go! Forsake her!
Away! You rolling river
An Indian brave has come to take her
Away! We're bound away
'Cross the wide Missouri.

Farewell, my love - I'm bound to leave you
Away! You rolling river
Oh Shenandoah, I'll not deceive you
Away! We're bound away
'Cross the wide Missouri.

gvanderleun : August 23, 15  |  Your Say (10)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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Get your money for nothin' get your chicks for free.

And in the fullness of time, in the beginning of the first Boomer mid-life crisis, we woke up, looked around, and it was the Eighties.

The Sixties were sleeping in their vampire coffins waiting to rise again and destroy the world in the early 21st Century.

The Seventies were in the rearview mirror as the long Cocaine-Disco-All-Night-Orgy faded down into AIDS funerals and herpes.

And lo and behold the survivors suddenly had families, and found themselves in jobs that had somehow become careers.

At long last, the Boomers were buckling down and getting serious. After all, we'd bought homes, had children, and were living through 18% interest rates and hyper-inflation. Face it, we needed the money. Yes, we were all just about to grow up. And then....

MTV

Click Here to Continue
gerardvanderleun : August 22, 15  |  Your Say (8)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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Well, the bellhop's tears keep flowin'
And the desk clerk's dressed in black
Well, they've been so long on Lonely Street
Well, they'll never, they'll never get back
And they'll be so, where they'll be so lonely, baby
Well, they're so lonely
They'll be so lonely, they could die

Well now, if your baby leaves you
And you have a sad tale to tell
Just take a walk down Lonely Street
To Heartbreak Hotel....

"It was written by Tommy Durden and Mae Boren Axton.

The lyrics were based on a report in The Miami Herald about a man who had destroyed all his identity papers and jumped to his death from a hotel window, leaving a suicide note with the single line, "I walk a lonely street". Axton and Durden give different accounts of how the song was written. Durden's account is that he had already written the song and performed it with his band the Swing Billys before he presented it to Axton. Axton's account is that Durden had only penned a few lines of the song, and asked her to help him finish it. She says that the report of the suicide "stunned" her, and she told Durden, "Everybody in the world has someone who cares. Let's put a Heartbreak Hotel at the end of this lonely street." They were interrupted by the arrival of Glen Reeves, a local performer who had previously worked with Axton. The duo asked Reeves to help with the song, but after hearing the title he remarked that it was "the silliest thing I've ever heard", and left them to finish it themselves.
Rumors had been circulating in the press for several weeks that Presley, who had begun his career at Sun Records, was ready to move to RCA Victor to help launch him nationally. Axton played the demo to him in his room at the Andrew Jackson Hotel on November 10, 1955. Upon hearing the demo, Presley exclaimed "Hot dog, Mae, play that again!", and listened to it ten times, memorizing the song.
The Rolling Stones' guitarist Keith Richards wrote in his 2010 autobiography that "Heartbreak Hotel" had had a huge effect on him. Beyond Presley's singing itself, it was the total effect of his sound and his silence that so totally affected Richards: "Since my baby left me"—it was just the sound...That was the first rock and roll I heard. It was a totally different way of delivering a song, a totally different sound, stripped down, no bullshit, no violins and ladies' choruses and schmaltz, totally different. It was bare right to the roots that you had a feeling were there but hadn't yet heard. I've got to take my hat off to Elvis. The silence is your canvas, that's your frame, that's what you work on; don't try and deafen it out. That's what "Heartbreak Hotel" did to me. It was the first time I'd heard something so stark. -- La Wik

gerardvanderleun : August 21, 15  |  Your Say (6)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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"Mary, Mary, quite contrary
How does your garden grow?
With silver bells and cockleshells
And Mexicans working the rows."

Last June I was visiting an old friend in San Rafael, California. He lives the classic Marin county life high on a brindle California hillside. His house is reached by driving the blind curves of one of those thin hill roads. He's got open land and long views next to his house. And a beautiful and extensive garden. A Sunset Magazine garden.

And like most homeowners in Marin, he's got his own personal Mexican as the rich white guy's answer to "How does your garden grow?". Yard work, it's what most of the Mexicans of Marin do. That and construction, and cooking, and cleaning, and any other kind of scut work that brings them cash.

From what I could see, this yard worker gets about $85 a day. Maybe more, maybe less. Maybe for that day only. Maybe for two days a week. Hard to imagine it could be for three. But I have no way of knowing. In Marin it would be the height of political insensitivity to ask, "By the way, how much do you pay your own personal Mexican?"

My pal's personal Mexican doesn't speak much English. Just enough to get by. The home owners treat him with respect and a strange deference, lapsing in a kind of Spanglish in order to talk to him. They ferry their personal Mexican from their house high on the hill to his home -- somewhere in the rambling and beaten down apartment complexes east of the freeway in San Rafael.

It's probably that way for most of the working illegal Mexicans in San Rafael. They are, after all, here to "do the jobs that Americans won't do." or can't do because they are so busy working to pay for all the extras of the current American dream. Including servants.

This personal servant was working on a Friday and did a good job. And then he was taken east of the freeway and dropped off. He'd be back next week. For 85, 170, or maybe, if he was lucky, 250 tax-free bucks. When I ran the web site for the Cosmodemonic Magazine Company back in 2002, I'd clear that drinking a cup of coffee in the morning.

On Saturday I drove from my hotel near the Frank Lloyd Wright Marin Civic Center back up to my friend's home high on the hill. I took the freeway but missed the main exit to San Rafael and had to take the next one. That off-ramp emptied down near the strip of big box stores, right at the edge of Home Depot.

Home Depots are, among other big-box construction hardware stores, the default shape-up spot of pick-up Mexican labor in the US. We all know that. When you need something done you just drive out to the nearest Home Depot, get your materials, and then pick up your emergency Mexicans as you exit. Everybody knows this. Everybody sees this. Everybody does this.

In the now long established day-labor Home Depot areas we even have a permanent place for the ubiquitous taco wagon to set up shop. If local authorities or border control officials really wanted to cut back on illegals, they'd just sweep these areas. But local political institutions and local police -- and all of us too -- seem to have agreed to lay off these zones. We let them be lest America's ready supply of "We do anything for almost any pay" labor be disrupted. It's the shadow realm. It's the black, no-taxes, "If we've got the cash, they've got the backs they'll break for it" economy.

It's how we live now.

When I came off the freeway exit it was about noon on a Saturday. By noon on a Saturday, anybody in Marin who has a project that requires emergency Mexicans has already been to the Home Depot shape-up, chosen the number they need, negotiated what the pay would be, and driven away with them. Those still left have little hope for a job. But they remain because a small hope for half a day's meager pay is better than no hope at all.

The traffic halted at the intersection and I looked ahead and around and in the rear view mirror. Standing there, many of them looking at me and waving their hands to signal their availability, was a small battalion of around 300 out-of-work Mexican males, mostly young. I thought, "Well, they may be here to 'do the jobs Americans won't do,' but there is clearly not enough work."

Then I thought, "What happens to these men if we arrive at a point, in a recession, where there is a lot less work for them in their many millions? What happens when the American dream starts contracting from the edges and the extra cash that allows us to employ them starts to dry up? They won't be counted as 'unemployed' since they were never legally 'employable' in the first place. Where will they go? Back to a Mexico where a recession in the US will breed a depression in that 3rd World country? Unlikely. Their best shot would still be to stay here. But if they did, what would they do? And how many would there really be? And how hungry and desperate would they get?"

This was just one intersection at one exit from the freeway in San Rafael, California 500 miles north of the Mexican border. And there were about 300 temporarily unemployed illegal residents of San Rafael simply standing about. That would be okay for a day, a week, maybe a month. As long as it was only 300 Mexican males. But if a slump in black-market cash employment became longer, spread and deepened throughout the country, and the numbers of our shadow armies of the blight grew, then.... Well, what then?

The cold fact is that we don't know what "what then" would look like. The issue has not surfaced in the present campaign because it cannot surface. The reality of off-setting our indolence with kindness and cash is too frightening to think about when the extra cash runs dry; when Americans will again do any job just to have a job and woe betide any non-American who seeks to take that job away.

Perhaps we'll discover that we'll have to pay a very large bill for our indolence. And that the bill will not be paid with cash. It will be paid, not for the first time, with the last thing we want to see - the Army in our cities. I don't think we are prepared for that. I don't think we want to find out. I pray we never have to.

But it's how we live now.

[First published October 2008. Look how far we've come.]

Vanderleun : August 20, 15  |  Your Say (47)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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gerardvanderleun : August 18, 15  |  Your Say (9)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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gerardvanderleun : August 17, 15  |  Your Say (6)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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for your dining and dancing pleasure..... Doug Ross @ Journal: The Top 300 Conservative Websites, August 2015

gerardvanderleun : August 15, 15  |  Your Say (15)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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Coming back from the Farmers' Market in Paradise yesterday, I noticed the opening of this brand new business on Clark Road.

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Americans: Some see problems. Others see opportunities.

gerardvanderleun : August 15, 15  |  Your Say (3)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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Remember "ObamaPhone"? Of course you do.

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Remember "Cash for Clunkers"? Of course you do.

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Remember "Cash for Clunkers" meets "ObamaCare"? Of course you do.

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Well, now it's "Cash for Clunkers" meets Dumpsters...

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For a brand new lifestyle; for a brand new way of living! Housing for all. View optional.

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Here's how the magic happens via this Oakland "artiste:"

Click Here to Continue
gerardvanderleun : August 14, 15  |  Your Say (8)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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Stonewall Jackson and J.E.B. Stuart, 1861:

"Colonel Stuart, if I had my way we would show no quarter to the enemy. No more than the redskins showed your troopers. The black flag, sir.

"If the North triumphs, it is not alone the destruction of our property. It is the prelude to anarchy, infidelity ... ... the loss of free and responsible government. It is the triumph of commerce. The banks, factories.

"We should meet the invader on the verge of just defense... ...and raise the black flag. No quarter to the violators of our homes and firesides. Our political leadership is too timid to face the reality of this coming war. They should look to the Bible. It is full of such wars. Only the black flag will bring the North to its senses and rapidly end the war."

gerardvanderleun : August 12, 15  |  Your Say (19)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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Have you ever seen a halo around the Moon?

Such 22 degree rings around the Moon -- caused by ice crystals falling in the Earth's atmosphere -- are somewhat rare. OK, but have you ever seen a blue moon? Given the modern definition of blue moon -- the second full moon occurring in a calendar month -- these are also rare. What is featured above might therefore be considered doubly rare -- a halo surrounding a blue moon. The featured image was taken late last month near Zhongshan Station in Antarctica. Visible in the foreground are a power generating house and a snowmobile. What might seem to be stars in the background are actually illuminated snowflakes near the camera. --APOD: 2015 August 11 -

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gerardvanderleun : August 10, 15  |  Your Say (8)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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Chichen Itza

"What scaled and feathered fetish shakes awake our loamy sleep
in these sealed vaults where dust and sand enrobe our golden masks
that hover over dreaming faces drowned in tinted musk?
Here where the spider curls and chitters in the crystal locket.
Here as time's mouth leeches blood and brain and bids
the leather skin to tighten in on the empty, staring socket,
and bind the breath that fading far once laughed within the dusk?"

Here is your thin tin trowel,
And here your sable brush,
For prying loose these mitered stones,
And sweeping off the dust
That sifts between these shaded souls
Like paling ebony snow,
As you squat above the site
Where you worshiped once below.
Come thrust your torch
Through these shattered walls,
And map the stains on stone,
And explicate these distant deaths
From strewn patterns of bone.

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The distance that such deaths define
Is measured by that ageless path
That winds up from the sea's last limb
Meandering to the blood's demands,
And, rolling over shells' sharp rims,
Finally finds its well-trod way
To midnight's flaming brands
Where vacant, lusting faces grin
Within masks of whitened clay.

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This path slopes through the stunted woods
Where the mantis ruts and broods,
Then spirals down to the sacred caves
Where men in twitching files repeat
The witless chants of wind and waves.

"Thick curds of rancid smoke performed our genuflections.
Our flayed limbs writhed, then steamed in screams of light.
Our lidless eyes became one daring crow's confections.
Our shriveled nerves shrank back from the chittering coal's delight.
Our marrow melted fast as flames licked up our blackened bones.
Our gaping mouths spewed rancid smoke as if they would relate
the secret magic flint and steel on tethered flesh create."

Here is your iron pick,
And here your crested spoon.
Not silver, true, but still
The emblem of your art,
Which is, to wit,
To lay these bodies bare;
Explain their ritual agonies,
Deduce their sorry fate,
Describe their diet, sex,
The colors of their hair,
And tell how long
Their ashen lair
Has lain beneath
Our present pleasant State.

Vanderleun : August 10, 15  |  Your Say (8)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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By Mail: Gerard Van der Leun | c/o Lake Union Mail | 117 East Louisa, #380 | Seattle, WA 98102

AD On Hiatus

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I have Fed Monetary Policy matters to attend to so posting will be curtailed for a day or so. Thanks.

[PS: Wise readers seeing that I may have some small, minescule effect on national monetary policy will probably want to sell every position they hold to the bare walls.]



The day Al Gore was born there were 7000 polar bears on Earth.

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Today, only 26,000 remain. - - Rufus Kings

“Everybody in the wood business says the longleaf pine tree was the best wood the Lord ever made,”

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said Pat Fontenot, the owner of Olde Wood Accents in Washington, La., an antique pine dealer. “If it wouldn’t have been for the longleaf pine tree, we wouldn’t have been able to do the Industrial Revolution.”
The largest mass of longleaf pine in the city probably sits under the two towers of the Brooklyn Bridge. Completed in 1883, the bridge was built using caissons, essentially enormous airtight timber chambers that engineers sank into the riverbed, allowing workers inside to dig deeper into the earth below and workers above water to construct stone towers on top. Salvaging a Long-Lasting Wood, and New York City’s Past


He may be a dictator, butt he’s OUR dictator.

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ask yourself, would anyone else – Cruz, Rubio, Walker…Bush – be willing to violate the Constitution in order to save the Constitution? I think not.
And we sense that America needs someone who will. In order to “level the playing field” again and give our kids and grandkids a shot at enjoying an American life. And currently that someone exists only in the persona of The Donald: no matter how much you may like some of the others, he’s currently the only guy on the podium who actually knows how to seize the power at his disposal and use it to do what he thinks needs to be done to make America great again: deport illegal aliens? Boom. End anchor babies? Boom. Get rid of Obamacare and start over? Boom. Nullify the agreement with Iran? Boom, and I do mean Boom! Michelle Obama's Mirror: Trump: Willing To Kill The Constitution In Order To Save It? I’m OK With That.


Thousands of Apps Secretly Run Ads That Users Can't See

Forensiq identified over 5,000 apps that display unseen ads on both Apple and Android devices.
Advertisers are paying about $850 million for these ads each year, according to the report, and the apps with the highest rate of ad fraud can burn through 2 gigabytes of data per day on a single device. The sheer amount of activity generated by apps with fake ads was what initially exposed the scam. Forensiq noticed that some apps were calling up ads at such a high frequency that the intended audience couldn’t possibly be actual humans. The apps, says Forensiq, were hitting these numbers by showing as many as five ads in the background for every ad visible to users. Some apps continued to scroll through ads even after the app had been closed. - Bloomberg Business


Charlie Daniels to Congress (in essence) 'Fuck you spineless maggots. Strong letter follows.'

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An Open Letter to Congress by Charlie Daniels"The courageous politicians that once championed this nation have been replaced, for the most part, by a breed of milksop,
politically correct, scared of their own shadow, pushover, pathetic excuses for public servants who are supposed to be representing a constituency of citizens who have to live with the circumstances of their timid folly. You don't even have the courage to face down an out of control president, even when he makes a deal with the devil. Don't you bunch of timid capons even care what kind of world you're leaving to your children and grandchildren, not to even mention the rest of us? Are you really party partisans before you're parents and grandparents or even human beings?


We need to pay more attention to the neglect of children.

They are not being neglected nearly enough, and the consequence is that they grow up neurotic, and asthmatic.
A model mother of my recent acquaintance boasts of the success of her own neo-mediaeval parenting style. For example, she would not help her children with homework, and left them to the consequences if it was not done. She would not drive them to more than one extra-curricular activity. “I was not their best friend or their chauffeur or their social secretary.” She did teach them to read and write, since the schools don’t do that any more; and was able to inculcate clear thinking in this way. How to raise children : Essays in Idleness


Al Gore doesn't care about global warming. He just wants it to be 1976 again, forever.

When people complain that X sucks now, but it used to be great, you're usually listening to nursing home conversation.
All that people know is what was popular when they were young. They dream of their salad days and the soundtrack to what they were doing at the time, which is intensely trivial to everyone but them. Al Gore doesn't care about global warming. He just wants it to be 1976 again, forever. Lots of people are like him. They simply choose different topics to be fuddy-duddies about. Sippican Cottage: The Cover Charge to Greatness


I was walking through the mall and I saw that there was a “Islamic Book Store.”

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I was wondering what exactly was in an Islamic bookstore so I went in. As I was wandering around taking a look, the clerk stopped me and asked if he could help me.

I imagine I didn’t look like his normal clientèle, so I asked, “Do you have a copy of Donald Trump’s book on his U.S. Immigration Policy regarding Muslims and illegal Mexicans?”

The clerk said, “F*** off, get out and stay out!”

I said, “Yes, that’s the one! Do you have it in paperback?” Curmudgeonly & Skeptical

The market demand for gay celebrities is much smaller than the available supply.

Despite her celebrity status, Ellen Page ultimately cannot escape the inevitable consequences of inequality, not even in gay-friendly Hollywood.
Her high-profile “coming out” in 2014 has damaged her career prospects as an actress because, despite what anyone may imagine, the market demand for gay celebrities is much smaller than the available supply. Denounce the movie-going public as a bunch of bigoted haters, if you like, but the heterosexual majority (97.7% of Americans, according to federal research) expect their entertainment to be entertaining, and tiresome propaganda about The People’s Glorious Democratic Struggle for Gender Equality is not entertaining. Radical Feminism and the ‘Equality’ Trap : The Other McCain


For complete confidence that your secrets remain secure, be sure to use the Hillary Super Sweeper regularly:

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Michelle Obama's Mirror: “Clean Up on Email 3!”

Sigh.

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For a school that was routinely on the front pages earlier this year for fights, arrests, bomb threats, assaults, and an email from the principal to the entire staff accusing a teacher of causing possible race relation problems, this is probably not the way North wanted to start the new school year. -- GoLocalWorcester

“[Hitler] has grasped the falsity of the hedonistic attitude to life.

Nearly all western thought since the last war, certainly all “progressive” thought, has assumed tacitly that human beings desire nothing beyond ease, security, and avoidance of pain.
In such a view of life there is no room, for instance, for patriotism and the military virtues. Hitler, because in his own joyless mind he feels it with exceptional strength, knows that human beings don’t only want comfort, safety, short working-hours, hygiene, birth-control and, in general, common sense; they also, at least intermittently, want struggle and self-sacrifice, not to mention drums, flag and loyalty-parades … Whereas Socialism, and even capitalism in a grudging way, have said to people “I offer you a good time,” Hitler has said to them “I offer you struggle, danger and death,” and as a result a whole nation flings itself at his feet” George Orwell HappyAcres


Generally speaking, you don’t bring a nothing to a gunfight and expect to win.

It can happen, but you don’t make “use your bare hands to take down a guy with an AK-47” your Plan A.

I know this because I have training, experience, and a brain. The blithering idiots at Addicting Info, however, looked at this fluke, consulted fellow blithering idiots who know nothing about lethal force, and published an article titled Proving The Best Defense Is A Good Guy WITHOUT A Gun, Unarmed U.S. Soldiers Foil French Gunman (VIDEO)

I’m pretty sure Addicting Info’s writers are literally the dumbest people on earth. I don’t know much about AI’s writers or editors. I haven’t seen their IQ test results. I’m sure they’re all educated, and probably know many things about important topics like white privilege or microaggressions. But anyone who believes you’re better off unarmed when someone tries to shoot you with an AK has to be dumber than Forrest Gump. You have to be pretty far down the intelligence scale to write drivel like this:
“The least surprising thing about Friday’s events in France is the fact that the shooter was stopped by unarmed good samaritans. The idea that the best weapon against a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun is pure NRA propaganda… It’s tough to imagine how things might have turned out differently if the two good samaritans were armed on that French train. Multiple guns would have just added to the chaos and potentially to the injury or body count.”
What the French Train Attack Doesn’t Prove | chris hernandez



Urban Life Now: More fundamentally, Christ is not welcome there.

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For there is no community. The public spaces are sterile, the surfaces all designer-paved, and elaborate by-laws prevent anything human from growing in the cracks.
Restaurants outnumber groceries; each is a fake, in menu and decor; the groceries flog ready-made microwave meals. The people themselves are permanently “in transit,” many throughout their lives, on a journey that is the opposite of a pilgrimage. They have allowed themselves to become almost pure economic factors, with a job and a place to sleep, plus free time for demeaning entertainments. It is an environment in which there are more dogs than children — especially those small, yappy, and spoilt, on which the females ladle their maternal instincts. (On one recent walk I counted specialized retail outlets: eight for pets, and two for children.) The roundest wheel : Essays in Idleness


Now review Trump’s empty sentence: "We need to take America back."

From whom? Notice the intentional lack of detail? In this case, the lack of detail is the powerful part of the sentence.

Who did this awful thing??? Is it the top one-percenters who stole all the country’s money? Is it the liberals? Is it the politically-correct people? Is it the immigrants who are taking jobs? Is it the wrong-headed people in general? Is it the minorities? The women? Is it just our reputation in the world that we lost? Was it our former greatness we lost?

See how the open-ended suggestion works? Every voter is free to fill in the topic of their own greatest fear. Trump VS Bush: Persuasion Wars | Scott Adams Blog



[Bumped]

atrumpnotperfect

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My Grandfather’s Imposter

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My grandfather, Donald Dea McGirk died in May 2012. At his funeral, my dad, Tim McGirk, who is a journalism lecturer at Berkeley and a former correspondent, told me something very peculiar:
“Did I ever tell you your grandfather had an impostor? One of his friends—a guy named Les Manning—assumed his identity and used his stories to get into the Explorer’s Club.” - Roads & Kingdoms


If we were to erect a monument to the spirit of our age, it wouldn’t be something sublime like the Eiffel Tower,

St. Peter’s Basilica or the Empire State Building. No grandiose frescos would decorate it. No wondrous ostentations in gold leaf and lapis lazuli would adorn it. No clean-limbed marble statuary would guard it.
No, it’d be a squat, ugly thing, like a paleolithic fertility fetish or a Morlock or typical WorldCon polyamory enthusiast. It would be sexless, androgynous and gendernonconforming all at the same time, and rendered in drab wattle and daub. Its most striking feature would be a great big mealy mouth, from which would drip liquid bromides and taurine fecal matter. Hordes of hooting crypto-humanoids in their mobility scooters would gather under this toxic shower to pray for equality and more all-you-can-eat buffets. -- John C. Wright's Journal


By championing the little brown guys, they think they are washing off the stink of racism.

It’s why the reality of Hispanic voting patterns
have never left a mark on the thinking of modern conservatives. It’s also why they keep yapping about how they must win over these “natural conservatives,” even though all the data says otherwise. They are sure they are on the side of angels. They have the right answer to the Great Question. Facts will come around soon enough. - - The Specter of Immigration | The Z Blog


The man who posted himself to Australia

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In the mid-1960s, Australian athlete Reg Spiers found himself stranded in London with no money to buy a plane ticket home.
Desperate to get back to Australia in time for his daughter's birthday, he decided to post himself in a wooden crate. "I just got in the thing and went. What was there to be frightened of? I'm not frightened of the dark so I just sat there. "It's like when I travel now if I go overseas. There's the seat. Sit in it, and go." - BBC News


"I just looked over at Spencer and said, 'Let's go!'"

The expensive global security establishment failed to stop 9/11, and — despite having the French-train gunman flagged as a possible jihadist— did nothing to stop this weekend's attack. And that’s a lesson.
Bureaucracies have their place, but they don’t deal well with diffuse threats such as terrorism. By the time “first responders” get there, it’s usually too late. But there’s one group of “responders” who don’t have to go anywhere, and that’s the group already on the scene. In conventional analysis, and in the terrorists’ hopes, those people are called “victims.” But as the three Americans on that French train demonstrated, victimhood isn’t the only response. - - Glenn Reynolds: See something? DO something!


Reasons why early Israeli nuclear pre-emption is not only justified but almost mandatory.

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Iran's underground nuclear targets are likely harder than American and Israeli hard-target munition (HTM) developers have assumed. Why?
Because Iranian engineers have perfected the world's toughest concrete, developing mixtures using geopolymers, quartz powders (called fume) and metal and ceramic fibers. The result is hardness levels reportedly up to 50,000-60,000 psi in experimental samples. This means that even shallow “cut and cover” hard targets like the Natanz centrifuge enrichment plant, an armored complex in an excavated pit that is then covered, can resist destruction by the US's most lethal hard-target bomb: the 30,000-lb “Massive Ordnance Penetrator.” Only the B-2 and the B-52 can carry the MOP. Yet while the MOP can penetrate ~200 ft into 5000-psi targets, it only reaches 25 feet into 10,000-psi concrete – and Iranian cement for new or up-armored underground bunkers has likely progressed well beyond that. Articles: Thinking About the Unthinkable: An Israel-Iran Nuclear War


You will never elect anyone to take the government apart.

Once you know how to work it well enough to get in charge of it, you don't want to wreck it. You want to lord over it and add to it. No one wants the bulldozed empty lot where a Post Office once stood to be named after them. Humans don't work that way. Sippican Cottage: The Cover Charge to Greatness

And, yes, those last two items were very meta.....

.... and, yes, this item only compounds that.

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It seems there are few options for responding to Trump:

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Debate, uh uh; Discredit, nope; Bribe, ... huh? Blackmail, ditto; He should stay away from Dealey Plaza. Drudge splashes: "This just in, stadium hosting Trump and ten thousand followers reduced to rubble with eerie flame and smoke cloud. Witnesses from half a mile away report hearing "something like a loud bang, er, louder than a car backfire, ya know?" Local airport reported activity on radar screens just prior to explosion; NSA have confiscated the recordings and quarantined the air traffic controllers.
Any opposition to the investigation will be handled as complicity. Late night arrests, assets seizures, news breaks with names and addresses. Do all this so that for miles around people see it all, understand it, tremble, and tell themselves that we are killing the bloodthirsty "traitors" and that we will continue to do so ...Once done is done. the investigation by Government agencies, right? will drag on longer than the glove that didn't fit or Hilary's emails. -- Chasmatic in These Just In


These Just In

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The Long Lasting Style of Buster Keaton? Yes, Buster Keaton

Department of Bad Ideas: Mass grave of possible bubonic plague victims excavated in London

Early Planned Parenthood site: Ring of Babies: The disturbing scene found in 1,000-year-old tomb in Peru

Those people at the Trump rally are not buying what the GOP is selling,

Just this simple: If You Still Support Planned Parenthood, You Are Simply Not A Decent Person

Never forget: THE DONALD IS BATMAN

The Dead Ovary Feminist has done more to ruin women’s lives than any Republican has.

Trump keeps delivering a master class in influence.
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Islamic Jihadi opens fire with AK-47. Terrorism not ruled out.

It happened again: on a train filled with cheese eating surrender monkeys hurtling through the Belgian countryside towards Paris, the Americans came to the rescue: Crew on Paris-bound train barricaded themselves in their staffroom and locked the door as Kalashnikov-wielding terrorist went on the rampage – leaving PASSENGERS to take him down.
And, as usual, the passengers were 3 Americans and a Brit. When an Islamic terrorist (Can I say that? The French called for caution before jumping to conclusions.) opened fire with an AK-47 (wait, you’re not allowed to have an assault rifle in France!) he was rushed and taken down by Americans Spencer Stone (U.S. Air Force) and Alek Skarlatos (Oregon National Guard) and subdued with the help of California student Anthony Sadler, and British national Chris Norman. Michelle Obama's Mirror:


These Two

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