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"At every crossway on the road that leads to the future...each progressive spirit is opposed by...a thousand men appointed to guard the past." -- Maurice Maeterlinck

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"For the age 60 and above, the early Boomers and their parents, facts remain very important and feelings, while important, are thought not very reliable. Emotions are to be controlled and overcome, they are not to be a guide.

"For post-Boomers, especially those born after 1980 or so, feelings are predominant, and the younger of that group the more important feelings are. This is also the cohort that was raised in the thick of the self-esteem movement, being told they are special (you know, just like everyone else). They received praise and rewards just for showing up (participation trophies, anyone?).

"They are very, very heavily into social signaling by where they live and where they vacation and by what their children do. They absolutely dominate their kids, who typically have little choice in what activities they will do and when.

"The younger sets of this group, born after the early 90s, have also learned (having been actually taught) that the cult of victimhood is the most important status of all. They are on high alert for reasons to be offended and when they are, it is for slights, real or imagined, that mystify the 60 cohort.

"Victimhood demands recompense so there is no hope of forgiveness unless the offender crawls on his belly like a cold reptile to beg for it. But forgiveness is never unconditional. The hatchet may be buried, but the handle protrudes skyward so it can be easy to recover.

"It is very much and honor-shame dynamic where all interactions are zero-sum. Where they are on the totem pole if always of concern and they are acutely aware of who is above or below. And woe betide those whom they think are below.

"I think of it as the 'Veruca Salt' generation. They are demand oriented. Their magical thinking is that merely because they want something, it should be granted. They react strongly negatively to being asked for facts and logic to support their contention because in their minds, 'I feel very strongly about this so why are you asking for facts?' "

A Comment by Sensing in "For most people, wanting to know the cold truth about the world is way, way down the list.”

gerardvanderleun : August 25, 16  |  Your Say (4)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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The Holy Remote of Saint Elvis

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The Holy Golden Beretta of Saint Elvis

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The Holy TV of Saint Elvis

Photos by Henry Leutwylers

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"I chose to focus on Lake Erie at a time of year when the Great Lakes often act more like oceans than lakes.

With the warm, sunny, beach days of summer behind us, it is during autumn's darkest, coldest and windiest days that the Great Lakes are transformed into wickedly wild and treacherous bodies of water. Masses of cold, arctic air push southward and collide with the warmer air above the lakes. This creates the perfect conditions for massive wind storms. These conditions are often referred to as "The Gales of November" or "The Witch of November." The waves at this time of year can be an amazing display of Mother Nature's power and a photographer's dream to capture. I can best describe the scene like a giant washing machine. There is no pattern to the waves: they move and explode in unpredictable ways, often colliding into one another and creating spectacular explosions of water. With winds reaching speeds of 70 mph (Category 1 on the hurricane scale), these powerful winds generate waves that reach heights of 20'-30'. These movements of water are large and powerful enough to send ocean freighters to a watery grave at the bottom of the lakes......

- Photographs and text by Dave Sandford | LensCulture

In a rustic old hall in Detroit they prayed
In the Maritime Sailors' Cathedral
The church bell chimed 'til it rang twenty-nine times
For each man on the Edmund Fitzgerald
The legend lives on from the Chippewa on down
Of the big lake they call Gitche Gumee
Superior, they said, never gives up her dead
When the gales of November come early

gerardvanderleun : August 24, 16  |  Your Say (2)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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The more things change, the more they stay insane.

16th-century Dutch engraving depicting a fantastical animal with the heads of various other animals sprouting from its body: an allegory for the difficulty of ruling over a diverse nation. In the background, watching on, can be seen a small mob or leaders, both secular and religious. This work by Antwerp-based artist Pieter van der Borcht the Elder, with its image of a confused and troubled body politic, can perhaps be seen as particularly salient in regards the US presidential elections. | The Public Domain Review

gerardvanderleun : August 24, 16  |  Your Say (1)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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InVerse

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He put his wallet on the table,
And Joe the Joker called his bluff.
Jack filled his house with a pair of queens,
But was busted by Joe's royal flush.

Jack's boots were worn and dusty,
And he'd sometimes get the shakes,
But he'd always raise the ante,
And play for bigger stakes.

You could see him sipping Turkey
And playing dollar Keno
In the first joint over Stateline.
They called him old Jack Reno.

Smiling, laughing Jack who always bought a round.
Jazzing, crazy Jack who was every loser's friend.
He had a nasty girl in Vegas, a sweet wife in Marin,
But his first love was the table where Fortune took a spin.

When he first blew into town fresh from gambler's school,
Jack knew all the odds by heart; Jack was no man's fool.
He thought that he owned all the cards. He knew his way around.
But it only took one joker to bring Jack Reno down.

You could stake him to a chip and watch him take a hit
From a brand new deck that never ran his way,
Or try to double down, or fill a California split
To build a little stack to get him through the day.

You could see him sipping Turkey
And playing dollar Keno
In the first joint over Stateline
Where they all knew old Jack Reno.

One night at a table where dealers named the game,
A man in black said, "The stakes are fates."
"I'm in," said Jack. "I'll take five cards."
He drew a Deuce, a pair of Aces, pair of Eights.

"I'll call your bluff," said smiling Jack.
The stranger showed three trays and took the pot.
"I'll be damned, " said cleaned out Jack.
"Your call," the stranger said and shot him on the spot.

They laid Jack out with his lucky charms,
And passed the hat for a box of pine,
And sent Jack to sit in with the worms
Down where no one loses all the time.

Now his ghost looks worn and dusty
As it moans and shakes its chains,
When it's haunting the casinos
And can't get in the games.

You can see it after midnight
Trying to place a bet on Keno,
In the first joint over Stateline ,
Just a chip off old Jack Reno.

gerardvanderleun : August 23, 16  |  Your Say (2)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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The classic 1977 film that put the vastness of the universe into perspective Opening at the scene of a picnic in a Chicago park, then gradually zooming out to encompass a view 100 million light years away before magnifying down again to a single proton, this classic 1977 short documentary by the legendary husband-and-wife design team Charles and Ray Eames uses exponential powers of ten to contextualise the scale of the known universe and chart the limits of human understanding. An ‘adventure in magnitudes’, Powers of Ten has been used to teach millions and millions about the cosmos and the microcosmic, and remains an extraordinary journey nearly 40 years later. - -| Aeon Videos

gerardvanderleun : August 23, 16  |  Your Say (4)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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glumobamaportrait2left.jpgContinuing his epic slither into the every deeper swamps of cluelessness Krauthammer is still afraid to let the obvious sewer of Obama swamp his wishing well in The price of powerlessness

"And in part because [Obama's] convinced that in the long run it doesn’t matter. Fluctuations in great power relations are inherently ephemeral. For a man who sees a moral arc in the universe bending inexorably toward justice, calculations of raw realpolitik are 20th-century thinking — primitive, obsolete, the obsession of small minds.
Obama made all this perfectly clear in speeches at the U.N., in Cairo and here at home in his very first year in office. Two terms later, we see the result. Ukraine dismembered. Eastern Europe on edge. Syria a charnel house. Iran subsuming Iraq. Russia and Iran on the march across the entire northern Middle East.
At the heart of this disorder is a simple asymmetry. It is in worldview. The major revisionist powers — China, Russia and Iran — know what they want: power, territory, tribute. And they’re going after it. Barack Obama takes Ecclesiastes’ view that these are vanities, nothing but vanities.
In the kingdom of heaven, no doubt. Here on earth, however — Aleppo to Donetsk, Estonia to the Spratly Islands — it matters greatly."

Sigh. It's getting pretty late for Krauthammer to have a revelation about the truth of this unconnected, landless, nationless, president without a country. Simply put Obama's wanted to destroy this nation from the time he found out his mother was a slut and his "mentor" "Pop" was more than ready to diddle him as a boy. [Forbidden >]And don't even think about how stereotypical it is that Obama's mother's sperm donor would just skip out on the mom and the kid at the first opportunity. [< Forbidden]

[Note: Somehow this essay from 2011 never really goes out of style. I could run it every week and it would just become more true.]

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Vanderleun : August 22, 16  |  Your Say (112)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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18 Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.

19 If ye be willing and obedient, ye shall eat the good of the land:

20 But if ye refuse and rebel, ye shall be devoured with the sword: for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it.

21 How is the faithful city become an harlot! it was full of judgment; righteousness lodged in it; but now murderers.

22 Thy silver is become dross, thy wine mixed with water:

23 Thy princes are rebellious, and companions of thieves: every one loveth gifts, and followeth after rewards: they judge not the fatherless, neither doth the cause of the widow come unto them.

24 Therefore saith the Lord, the Lord of hosts, the mighty One of Israel, Ah, I will ease me of mine adversaries, and avenge me of mine enemies:

25 And I will turn my hand upon thee, and purely purge away thy dross, and take away all thy tin:

26 And I will restore thy judges as at the first, and thy counsellors as at the beginning: afterward thou shalt be called, The city of righteousness, the faithful city.

27 Zion shall be redeemed with judgment, and her converts with righteousness.

28 And the destruction of the transgressors and of the sinners shall be together, and they that forsake the Lord shall be consumed.

29 For they shall be ashamed of the oaks which ye have desired, and ye shall be confounded for the gardens that ye have chosen.

30 For ye shall be as an oak whose leaf fadeth, and as a garden that hath no water.

31 And the strong shall be as tow, and the maker of it as a spark, and they shall both burn together, and none shall quench them. Isaiah 1

gerardvanderleun : August 21, 16  |  Your Say (5)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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Fiber Fix, The Manly Man's Tape, asks 'What happens when you flip a car with a roll cage held together by duct tape?'

gerardvanderleun : August 20, 16  |  Your Say (2)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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Louisianan calls out BLM, Black Panther hypocrites: Where are you, if Black Lives Matter?

“I ain’t seen one Black Panther boat or one Black Lives Matter boat,” he said from his flood-ravaged hometown. “All I see are our own people from our own city.”

“With all the drama that was going on with the Alton Sterling killing,” he said, “they came out with guns and ready to go to war.”’

And now?

“All these people flooded out and truly in need of some help, and you can’t find one of them.”

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gerardvanderleun : August 19, 16  |  Your Say (9)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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"1909 10HP Blackstone oil engine was used for pumping water from a river to a market garden.

The engine was sabotaged in the 1920s by someone blowing up the cylinder with explosives. A new cylinder was installed and the engine was returned to service for a number of years when it eventually fell into disuse. A number of river floodings submerged the engine and it was eventually partially buried in silt. It was recovered in the 1990s and in 1997 it was dismantled, cleaned and started again after many years of neglect. The starting procedure requires heating of the hot bulb with a blow lamp in order to vaporise the fuel ( kerosene ) and to preheat the internal combustion chamber to allow fuel ignition."

Engineers' Creed

As a Professional Engineer, I dedicate my professional knowledge and skill to the advancement and betterment of human welfare. I pledge:

  • To give the utmost of performance;
  • To participate in none but honest enterprise;
  • To live and work according to the laws of man and the highest standards of professional conduct;
  • To place service before profit, the honor and standing of the profession before personal advantage, and the public welfare above all other considerations.

In humility and with need for Divine Guidance, I make this pledge.

Adopted by National Society of Professional Engineers, June 1954

HT: Tech Stuff 31 | The Arts Mechanical

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gerardvanderleun : August 19, 16  |  Your Say (6)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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Betty Boop Cartoon Banned For Drug Use 1934.

Laughing Gas, or nitrous oxide, has been used as an intoxicant since about ten seconds after it was first synthesized by Joseph Priestly in 1772. That, however, does not mean that by the 1960s laughing gas was regarded as passé. Au contraire since you have to remember that in those days people were trying to dry, roll, and smoke the inside of bananas. In those days, nitrous was just another established "fun" recreational drug. In those days you could buy a tank just by saying you needed it for underwater welding. Yes, underwater welding.

A friend I knew in those days discovered that taking a hit of nitrous "helped" him with his creative writing. In a way he was right. He did create very clever and interesting short stories when he'd had a few whiffs from the tank. Indeed, in the spirit of the 60s drug counter culture in Berkeley an San Francisco, he became convinced that if any drug was worth doing, it was worth overdoing. (A common American attitude that persists to this day.)

He was 24 years old and impatient for fame.

In pursuit of more and more "creative push" from his tank of nitrous he designed a mask that would fit over his nose and mouth and be held there by some complicated elastics so he could type with both hands while whiffing from the tank.

It worked pretty well and I recall noticing that his writing did indeed get better and more interesting. Right up to the morning when they found him slumped dead over his typewriter with the mask fixed firmly over his nose and mouth, and the tank still hissing away.

He was 24 years old and impatient for fame.

He left behind two binders with his writings in them. The stories were good and full of promise. I still have the binders somewhere. I think.

If not they are mouldering in a sub-sub-basement of a Brooklyn Heights brownstone on Pierrepont Street.

He "lived fast, died young, and left a good-looking corpse." And two forgotten binders of "promising" work.

Too much heavy, heavy fuel....

gerardvanderleun : August 17, 16  |  Your Say (8)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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The Iconic Stevie Nicks in 1976: Big hair, big hips, big pipes, hot lips, and (alas) the brain of a singer. But when she turned it on she could blow up the entire building and leave everyone charred and cheering in the rubble.....

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American Studies

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'Historic' Louisiana Flooding Affects 40,000 Homes, Governor Says

About 40,000 homes in southeastern Louisiana have been affected by days of devastating flooding, which Gov. John Bel Edwards today described as "unprecedented" and "historic." At least eight people have died, he said, adding that authorities remain in emergency search mode in many parishes. Edwards said that over 20,000 people have been rescued and about 8,000 were in shelters Monday night....

Yes, it's bad but hardly "historic." It's been worse. Much, much worse.....

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gerardvanderleun : August 16, 16  |  Your Say (8)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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This is a rearranged version (mostly to fit the viewable area, plus the title) of a series of photos by a female Yemeni photographer Boushra Almutawakel, who received her education in the United States.

"Having studied in America, Ms Almutawakel has returned to live and work in Sanaa in Yemen. Controversial among Yemenis, her photographs seem designed mainly for a Western audience. See an interview with her here.

Contrast it with the pink Vagina Burkas of the leftist "women's rights" radicals of Code Pink, who, when they are not dressed as vaginas to pursue collectivist identity politics, are often cuddling up to Muslim theocratic dictators.

Code Pink's strategy is the opposite of the Yemeni photographer's: controversial among Americans, their stunts are calculated to reach anti-American foreign audiences.

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Intentionally or not, the message sent by their costumes reduces the woman's existence to a single physiological function, stripping her of an individual mind, spirit, and character - a view not very different from the fundamentalist Islamic idea of a woman as merely a veiled reproductive organ. This is hardly coincidental: two militant collectivist philosophies are bound to converge at one point or more.

MUCH MORE AT Women's Progress Backwards: The Tale of Two Burkas

gerardvanderleun : August 14, 16  |  Your Say (4)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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Pure Products of America

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"Made with sweet cream BUTTERmilk"

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This, of course, was only the beginning of the tsunami of NotButterBullshit.

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And finally the saddest of them all....

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gerardvanderleun : August 13, 16  |  Your Say (14)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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Well I'm about to get UPSET
From watchin' my TV
Been checkin' out the news
Until my eyeballs fail to see
I mean they say that every day
Is just another rotten mess
And when it's gonna change, my friends
Is anybody's guess

So I'm watchin' and I'm waitin'
Hopin' for the best
Even think I'll go to prayin'
Every time I hear 'em sayin'
That there's no way to delay
That trouble comin' every day
No way to delay
That trouble comin' every day

- - - The Mothers Of Invention - Trouble Every Day

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Standing instructions to Hillary Handlers

gerardvanderleun : August 11, 16  |  Your Say (6)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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I'm sentimental, if you know what I mean. I love the country but I can't stand the scene. And I'm neither left or right. I'm just staying home tonight, getting lost in that hopeless little screen. But I'm stubborn as those garbage bags that Time cannot decay, I'm junk but I'm still holding up ....

It's coming through a hole in the air,
from those nights in Tiananmen Square.
It's coming from the feel
that this ain't exactly real,
or it's real, but it ain't exactly there.
From the wars against disorder,
from the sirens night and day,
from the fires of the homeless,
from the ashes of the gay:
Democracy is coming to the U.S.A.
It's coming through a crack in the wall;
on a visionary flood of alcohol;
from the staggering account
of the Sermon on the Mount
which I don't pretend to understand at all.
It's coming from the silence
on the dock of the bay,
from the brave, the bold, the battered
heart of Chevrolet:
Democracy is coming to the U.S.A.

It's coming from the sorrow in the street,
the holy places where the races meet;
from the homicidal bitchin'
that goes down in every kitchen
to determine who will serve and who will eat.
From the wells of disappointment
where the women kneel to pray
for the grace of God in the desert here
and the desert far away:
Democracy is coming to the U.S.A.
this little wild bouquet:
Democracy is coming to the U.S.A.

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gerardvanderleun : August 10, 16  |  Your Say (9)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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If you were raised on this ancient afternoon series of televised myths and tales [1947 to 1960].... and you grew too old for this last look, all you have to know is.... Clarabelle speaks his first and only line in the history of the program.

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gerardvanderleun : August 9, 16  |  Your Say (13)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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The 4 COAs of the Apocalypse [COA,military: Course Of Action. Image by Butch**]

[Note: Given current world conditions it seemed a good idea to repost this meditation from December of 2006. Some details have changed. Some players have changed. New players have emerged. And always changing for the worse, of course.]

"What is the most terrible and terrorizing thought of the 21st century?"

Stick around and I'll tell you.]

1. The Most Dangerous Game

LURKING BENEATH OUR INTERNAL ARGUMENT concerning the relentless demographic expansion of Islam into the West without assimilation, is the persistent background question, "Oh, my, whatever shall WE do with THEM?"

WE are, you see, like muddlers and fiddlers since Nero, worried about THEM. Our doltish conservative muddlers and fiddlers worry about what "THEY will do to US" if we aren't very, very careful and selective about which of THEM we capture or kill while WE seek to give THEM the "gifts" of freedom and democracy. Our brave new fiddlers on the Left fiddle about worrying if THEY have enough to eat, enough to wear, enough respect, enough, in short, of the love THEY deserve for not killing US today.

Both bumbling groups may differ in the focus of their fretting, but fret they do. For the problem, as they have defined it, has to do with what is commonly stated as 'a statistically small group of Muslims around the world' who need to be dealt with in some manner so that greater Islam can get on with the historic task of being "a religion of peace and understanding." The majority of both camps of muddlers and fiddlers agree on this one thing: It isn't Islam that's the problem, just a few heretics that have gotten out of hand in their zeal to obey the will of God, and, hey, who hasn't done that from time to time?

One solution, commonly referenced as "the Left/Liberal" position is essentially "leave them alone and they'll come home. They know its for their own good." The other solution, "the Right/Conservative" position, is to force assimilation, modernization, reformation and democratic mechanisms upon Islam "for its own good."

The two positions agree that "something must be done." They differ only in their specifications for "a New!, Improved! Islam" that can play well with other religions and nations in the post-modern world where "business as usual" is worshipped more than any other state of affairs. Both positions, whether they focus on "giving" the benefits of the modern world to the West's Islamic populations spread out in its cities and nations, or "bringing" the same benefits to the center of Islamic mass in the Middle East, share the belief that Islam can be "fixed."

Once you understand that the question posed by both enclaves of political "thinkers" boils down to "How can WE best fix THEM?" the subtext of the whole Big Argument starts to echo Richard II:
Let's talk of graves, of worms, and epitaphs;
Make dust our paper and with rainy eyes
Write sorrow on the bosom of the earth,
Let's choose executors and talk of wills....

In short, both sides think that in some way "Islam is broken." Is it?

Finding myself in neither political camp, it strikes me that Islam -- especially if you look at the fertility rates of Muslims, mosque construction and attendance, and the retention and conversion of the faithful around the globe -- is doing just fine. It strikes me that a religion that doesn't view itself as broken is unlikely to take kindly to the notion that it needs fixing. Still, that's the proposition advanced by both camps in our broken and shattered society. But it is a proposition that is advanced only sotto voce, in whispers, because to ask, right out loud, if Islam wants to be "fixed" or indeed can be "fixed," is to know the answer in the act of asking.

The answer is a resounding "No." And that brings the persistent background question, "Oh, my, whatever shall WE do with THEM?" into sharp relief in the foreground of Western minds. If history is any guide that is the single most dangerous question one group of humans can ask about another. It is a question no sane member of the West nor sane member of Islam would ever want thrust into the foreground, for it begins the process of transforming a group with whom a society lives in peace into the "Others" with whom a society cannot live in peace.

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Vanderleun : August 7, 16  |  Your Say (57)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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MONDO BIZARRO


Donations Gratefully Accepted

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

Are Rotisserie Chickens a Bargain?

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Rotisserie chickens generally come packaged in containers of eight to 12 chickens,
almost always pre-injected, fairly uniform in size, and frequently pre-seasoned, ready to pop into the ovens. Other times, Owens Hanning says, the producers include packages of dry-rub in different seasonings—lemon-pepper is a biggie, along with herb-garlic—for store staff to apply to the chicken skin. It’s a rare store for employees to do the chicken prep from scratch, using their own herbs and seasonings—a fact confirmed by workers behind the counters, who, for the most part, didn’t know what was in or on the chickens. == Priceonomics


In the United States of today, clouds gather as the royalty toast each other with expensive wines.

In numbers that a half century ago would have seemed impossible, the American young live with their parents, being unable to find jobs to support themselves.
Waitressing in a good bar pays better in tips than a woman with a college degree can otherwise earn, assuming that she can earn anything at all. Employers having learned to hire them as individual contractors, they move into their thirties with no hope of a pension for their old age. Desperation and hatred are close cousins. Paris, 1787: It Reaches Manhattan, Doubtless Due to Continental Drift | Fred On Everything


The world has become claustrophobic, stifling; limited by our paranoia and our enemies’ great evil.

I travel without a phone, without internet, without whatever the hell ‘Pokemon Go’ is – zombies wandering aimlessly through the dunes,
almost stepping on a roadrunner as they look for – well I have no idea really, and I have no energy to try and find out. I drive without that little voice that has replaced our conscience, ‘turn left at the next crossing, continue on interstate eight for one-hundred-miles’. Fear. Fear at being lost, fear at missing something. More probably fear of finding something. Fear of being alone with our thoughts and our families. - - | Joel D. Hirst's Blog


Aldous Huxley Discusses 1984 vs Brave New World with George Orwell

"The philosophy of the ruling minority in Nineteen Eighty-Four is a sadism which has been carried to its logical conclusion by going beyond sex and denying it.
Whether in actual fact the policy of the boot-on-the-face can go on indefinitely seems doubtful. My own belief is that the ruling oligarchy will find less arduous and wasteful ways of governing and of satisfying its lust for power, and these ways will resemble those which I described in Brave New World. I have had occasion recently to look into the history of animal magnetism and hypnotism, and have been greatly struck by the way in which, for a hundred and fifty years, the world has refused to take serious cognizance of the discoveries of Mesmer, Braid, Esdaile, and the rest."Letters of Note: 1984 v. Brave New World


To see what is in front of one's nose needs a constant struggle.

One thing that helps toward it is to keep a diary, or, at any rate, to keep some kind of record of one's opinions about important events.
Otherwise, when some particularly absurd belief is exploded by events, one may simply forget that one ever held it. Political predictions are usually wrong. But even when one makes a correct one, to discover why one was right can be very illuminating. In general, one is only right when either wish or fear coincides with reality. If one recognizes this, one cannot, of course, get rid of one's subjective feelings, but one can to some extent insulate them from one's thinking and make predictions cold-bloodedly, by the book of arithmetic. In private life most people are fairly realistic. When one is making out one's weekly budget, two and two invariably make four. Politics, on the other hand, is a sort of sub-atomic or non-Euclidean word where it is quite easy for the part to be greater than the whole or for two objects to be in the same place simultaneously. Hence the contradictions and absurdities I have chronicled above, all finally traceable to a secret belief that one's political opinions, unlike the weekly budget, will not have to be tested against solid reality. George Orwell: In Front of Your Nose


I knew the answer in 1964 but I forgot it by 1965

How does LSD induce short-term psychosis but long-term optimism? |
Shortly after taking the drug, participants who received LSD reported an increase in psychosis-like symptoms, including visual hallucinations, spiritual experiences and paranoia. It was an outcome the researchers had expected. But interestingly, those given LSD were more likely to feel positive, and even ‘blissful’ emotions, as opposed to the negative and ‘anxious’ feelings sometimes associated with psychedelic drugs. What was even more striking was that two weeks after taking LSD, these individuals reported increased optimism and openness, making them more creative and curious, as compared to those who received the placebo.


Security experts are always on our televisions telling us about the need for government surveillance of the public.

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After all, it is a dangerous world out there and if we’re going to invite the world into your towns, we have to have cameras on every corner. If that bit of thinking is not crazy enough, none of them ever talk about what happens when someone we don’t like gets that massive data trove collected by the surveillance state. They just pretend that can’t happen, even though it always happens.Ruling Class Madness | The Z Blog

The Benedict Option In the Louisiana Flood

I have NEVER been more proud than to be from Louisiana as I am in these awful days.
Look, the national media all found there way down here when Alton Sterling was shot and killed. But now, when thousands of black lives are shattered by catastrophic losses, where are they? If they came, and if they had eyes to see, they would know that what Augustine Amechi says is for real. We are seeing black folks and white folks rescuing each other, and caring for each other in the shelters, and even in each others’ homes. This kind of thing is happening everywhere, all around us. We are even seeing a conservative Southern Baptist man opening his apartment to a transgender man and his boyfriend, because they are strangers who needed a place to go, but also because they are not strangers at all, but neighbors, Louisianians, fellow human beings. | The American Conservative


How a Mathematician Turned an Obscure Number Into a Scary Story

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Pickover named the number after Belphegor, one of the seven princes of Hell, who is known primarily for tempting mortals with the gift of discovery and invention.
Why Pickover chose Belphegor exactly is unclear. On Pickover’s own site, he warns people not to stare at the number too long, and to look away and take a deep breath, after a few seconds. He also links the number to a symbol from the mysterious Voynich Manuscript, a work that may itself be some sort of massive troll. | Atlas Obscura


Trump is running the first high-tech, grassroots presidential campaign in history.

The other election campaign is the Trump barnstorming tour where he does these stadium shows for thousands.

They are not running ads to promote these things. Instead, they are relying on word of mouth via social media. They also get local media coverage. Trump is deliberately banning the big foot media from his events and he is not paying for a plane to ferry around the press like we have seen in prior campaigns. Trump is running the first high-tech, grassroots presidential campaign in history. Estates of the Realm



Fractured Lands: How the Arab World Came Apart

For all their revolutionary rhetoric, the dictators of Libya, Iraq and Syria remained ever mindful that their nations were essentially artificial constructs.
What this meant was that many of their subjects’ primary loyalty lay not to the state but to their tribe or, more broadly, to their ethnic group or religious sect. To keep them loyal required both the carrot and the stick. In all three nations, the leaders entered into elaborate and labyrinthine alliances with various tribes and clans. Stay on the dictator’s good side, and your tribe might be given control of a ministry or a lucrative business concession; fall on his bad side, and you’re all out in the cold. The strongmen also carefully forged ties across ethnic and religious divides. In Iraq, even though most all senior Baathist officials were, like Saddam Hussein, of the Sunni minority, he endeavored to sprinkle just enough Shiites and Kurds through his administration to lend it an ecumenical sheen. In Hafez al-Assad’s Sunni-majority Syria, rule by his Alawite minority was augmented by a de facto alliance with the nation’s Christian community, giving another significant minority a stake in the status quo. - - The New York Times


Hillary Clinton Magazine Special

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(1) - Botach

This life is too much trouble, far too strange, to arrive at the end of it

and then to be asked what you make of it and have to answer ‘scientific humanism.’

That won’t do. A poor show. Life is a mystery, love is a delight. Therefore I take it as axiomatic that one should settle for nothing less than the infinite mystery and the infinite delight, i.e. God. In fact I demand it. I refuse to settle for anything less. I don’t see why anyone should settle for less than Jacob, who actually grabbed a hold of God and would not let go until God identified himself and blessed him. — Walker Percy



The Latest "Pearl of Great Price"

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FOUND: The World's Largest Pearl The giant, irregularly shaped pearl is said to have been discovered in 2006 near the island of Palawan, when the fisherman’s anchor caught on a large shell during a storm.
Working to free his boat, the fisherman dove into the water to pull up the anchor by hand, bringing the shell with him. Inside was the record-breaking pearl. Apparently unaware of the pearl’s true value, the fisherman simply brought it home and put it under his bed as a good luck talisman. There it sat for a full decade. It was only after a fire forced him to move out of the house that he decided to hand the super-sized pearl over to local officials. The pearl measures a foot wide and over two feet long, and has been estimated to be worth somewhere near $100 million dollars.


"There was a steady stream of wee coming from the cheeky little bee."


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Bee Having A Wee Photo Taken By Grimsby Photographer Mark Parrott



It's Probably Nothing:

Following "Deadliest Month" In A Year, Ukraine President Warns Of "Full-Scale Russian Invasion" | Zero Hedge

There's Another Pile of Wood at the Woodpile

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1936. Ritz Crackers magazine ad | Ritz Crackers was introduced only two years earlier in Philadelphia and Baltimore.
The name meant to suggest an affordable luxury by invoking Manhattan's famous Ritz-Carlton Hotel, at only 19 cents per box. A runaway success in its test market, Ritz was distributed nationally in 1935, then internationally. By 1937 Ritz was the best-selling cracker in the world. Ritz is a "butter cracker" rather than a soda cracker, i.e., it's made with more shortening and no yeast. The holes are an ancient technique, called "docking", to keep the cracker flat while baking so it will be equally crisp edge to edge. Woodpile Report


Self-driving cars aren't a problem to be solved, because there's no problem there.

Why do Millennials want to sit in a booster seat clutching a ziploc bag of Cheerios and a Gameboy until they're ready for a nursing home? Drive your own damn car. It's not that hard if you're not texting. - Maggie's Farm

"On the sea or on the land / She's got the situation well in hand."



It's probably just a local misunderstanding:

FBI Investigating Possible ISIS-Inspired Knife Attack in Virginia - ABC News During the Saturday stabbing, Farooqui allegedly injured a man and woman at an apartment complex in Roanoke, yelling "Allah Akbar" as he attacked them with a knife, sources told ABC News. Authorities believe he may have been trying to behead the male victim, who was likely picked at random, ABC News was told.

I’m just an insignificant man in a huge country – a country full of people with names written in bold caps across the glossy covers of magazines,

whose insults echo through cyberspace like Kipling’s Zamzama. Nevertheless I am also sure that I’m not alone – that beside me there are a chorus of others who want to remember first that in November it is Thanksgiving, and only second that there is also an election. Who want first to figure out their son’s schooling, and leave the torture of our enemies for another time. Who want to pay off their mortgage before they fret about how to pay for free, well free everything really. Who want to marry, to love their wives and make babies and build for the future; hard work of honor and dignity and sacrifice which has made America strong. - - What’s Right With America | Joel D. Hirst


Gravitational waves will bring the extreme universe into view

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The first direct detection of gravitational waves on 14 September 2015 proved that massive objects can ripple the structure of space, verifying a key prediction of Albert Einstein’s general theory of relativity.
The second detection, made on 26 December 2015 and announced this June, firmly established gravitational waves as a new window to the Universe. But even more exciting are the detections yet to come: the thousands of signals that should soon be observed by the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO) and Virgo experiments. They will transform our understanding of black holes, neutron stars, supernova explosions, and perhaps even the origin and fate of the cosmos itself. - - | Aeon Ideas


"Readers of this blog take steps to make sure their employers are unaware that they read sites like this one, for fear the morality police will come calling."

The American college campus is under the control of ideological fanatics, who believe in their causes so deeply they are willing to ruin friends and family on behalf of their cause.
Thought crimes have become so common, we take them for granted. Readers ofthis blog take steps to make sure their employers are unaware that they read sites like this one, for fear the morality police will come calling.Supporting a candidate like Trump has become a private act of rebellion. The only thing missing from this toxic stew is an excessive believe in the supernatural, butthe hunt for hate thinkers is really just a modern form of witch hunting. Something Has Gone Wrong


"For most people, wanting to know the cold truth about the world is way, way down the list.”

"The ordinary modes of human thinking are magical, religious, social, and personal.
We want our wishes to come true; we want the universe to care about us; we want the approval of those around us; we want to get even with that s.o.b. who insulted us at the last tribal council. For most people, wanting to know the cold truth about the world is way, way down the list.” – - Known Hate Thinker John Derbyshire


What Is American Cheese, Anyway?

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Not every burger or grilled cheese I eat is made with American cheese, and there are times when I'm happy with a slab of sharp cheddar,
a slice of Comté, or a crumble of Roquefort on top. But if I had to pick one cheese to stock in my burger joint, you're damn right it's gonna be American. No other cheese in the world can touch its meltability or goo factor, and that's really what it's there for: texture. If I've taken the time to select and grind some great beef, I want that beef flavor to shine, not get covered up by a powerful cheese that would fare better on a cheese plate. | Serious Eats


It's Probably Nothing:

US sends jets to protect forces from Syrian regime strikes
WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. has twice scrambled fighter aircraft to protect American special operations forces and allies after Syrian government warplane attacks near the northeastern Syrian city of Hassakeh, officials said Friday. Navy Capt. Jeff Davis said the U.S. has increased combat air patrols in that area and has warned Syria that America will defend coalition troops. He also said he believes this is the first time the U.S. has scrambled aircraft in response to an incident like this involving Syrian government bombings.


In Orwell's view the mutability of the past was the foundation of tyranny.

"Who controls the past controls the future; who controls the present controls the past." To ensure this the Ministry of Truth was honeycombed with Memory Holes into which any inconvenient fact could be dropped and be disappeared.

But just to illustrate how things have changed for the State we now know that Orwell was wrong. The mathematically dominant method for recording transactions, whether they involve the transfer of financial assets, intellectual property, health records or any type of information is probably going to be the blockchain. It has three important properties. First the entire record can be reproduced by anyone from a Genesis cryptographic starting point such that all records will have the same signature if and only if they are the same. Second, no part of the record can be altered without regenerating the entire block chain from the the branch. Third, it is impossible to rewrite the block chain without incurring enormous real costs in electricity and computing power, as guaranteed by the laws of thermodynamics. The End of the Memory Hole | PJ Media



It's Probably Nothing:

Germany to tell people to stockpile food and water in case of attacks

I would no sooner send my son to a public school than let him walk around uninnoculated from disease.

It is tyranny disguised as liberation, mobocracy as democracy, discrimination as equality, stupidity as wisdom, and cruelty as compassion. -- One Cʘsmos: Liberalism and the Propagation of Mind Parasites

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