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"There may be many reasons for who we are, but there are no excuses."- Limon

Luc Bergeron (aka Zapatou)

has put a gigantic sampling together for his annual supercut “Best of Web”. This year he’s stitched together a whopping 233 viral video clips to create 6 minutes of non-stop action.

What were they all? Go here for the Official list of Best of Web 7

gerardvanderleun : December 18, 14  |  Your Say (0)  | PermaLink: Permalink

Note: This essay was written September 4, 2004 -- In another life. In another place. In another time. But then, given Pakistan today, not really another place or another time after all.



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handwithcrucifixbeslan.jpgThe boy that lies in his father's lap covered with crusts of blood gazing upward at nothing, nothing at all except his own pain.

The soldier with the unlit cigarette carrying the little girl in filthy underwear with a long smear of blood across her nose and down her chin.

The child's small hand with the dry pool of blood in the palm and the small gold crucifix lying in it.

The stretcher being run past the camera carrying what might, under the burns and the blood, be a young girl.... and another, and another, and another, and another, and another....

I began to gather these images yesterday, I think. Or was it the day before? I'm not really sure. The cascade of outrages, the piling of atrocity on top of atrocity, has become so unremitting that it is sometimes difficult to know where one episode of evil ends and another begins.

The waves keep coming and, because they are always to your back, they keep slamming you down into the hardpacked sand. You pick yourself up and spin around to face the next wave, but this sea of evil is cunning and the next wave will always come from behind your back no matter which direction you face. All you can know now is that there will be another one, and it will come at your back in the way the bullets came for the backs of the children in Russia.

Because I am both too old and too distant to either pick up a weapon to defend, or offer help and comfort to the wounded or the dying, I am forced back on silly, futile, small gestures such as gathering images of the atrocities. In this I disgust myself and, like those who did not stand with Henry V, hold my manhood cheap.

I thought that, perhaps, I could gather enough of them and arrange a kind of gallery as a testament, my own small memorial, to the children who were shot in the back or otherwise slaughtered by the diseased "militants" who thought nothing of these lives taken for their vile cause and their vile god. Somehow I would, I imagined, at least bear my own small witness among the millions of others doing the same around the world tonight.

And so I collected the images. I selected ones that showed the fascist smirk that always rises dark above any slaughter of innocents. I selected ones that revealed the courage of those who would try to rescue them. I found and saved some that revealed the chaos and sharp edge of the moment when all that a child may have in front of him is ripped out of him. I saved 10 images, saved 20, saved 40 and then came to the 41st photograph and stopped.

I stopped because in that one image, grainy, indistinct and from the far side of the world in a situation I could not imagine, I saw the one thing I was not expecting to see at all.

No, that's not it. It was not what I saw but what I recognized.

What I recognized was something that I could not see in the picture, but a recognition that came to me through the picture. I knew it immediately and at such a deep level that my first reaction was to look away, to go on to the next picture no matter what it was, to determine to never look at the 41st picture again.

But of course I did. I did because I had no choice. I had no choice because within this one picture I could see two separate episodes of my own life somehow together in one image that depicted an outcome that terrified me to the core of my being.

This is the picture I could not look at. This is the picture I must look at. I will try to explain -- not really to you, but to myself -- why it terrifies me more than all the other pictures.

She kneels among the dead children. She has long black hair pulled back and dresses in a loose black dress as she kneels at the head of her dead boy. She reaches out to touch, or perhaps arrange the hair, of her dead child. Her dark hair is parted in the middle and her arm seems to also be downed with dark hair. Her eyebrows too are dark and her skin olive. If I were to see this woman in another context, in a different and less death dominated photograph, at this focus and at this distance, I would think, for at least a long moment, that I was looking at my first wife.

She had this build, this coloring, the predilection for black clothing, and even an echo of the features of this woman since her ancestors came to America from the Balkans. She too would pull her hair back so. And she had, as I recall, the same ability to make a gesture that was at once strong and yet gentle when reaching out to touch our daughter when she was as young as the small dead boy that this woman caresses.

The life I had with my first wife was all long ago, and now I live far away in time, space and spirit from that woman as well as from that daughter. Now my life's setting is a small town, an ocean to the west, and a woman as different from my first wife as the sun is from the moon. And someone else as well.

In this life there is, to my continuing delight, a child. He's bright and funny and breathtakingly striking ten-year old boy so topped off with life and joy that he can stop your heart. At the present time, my step-son is fond of Nintendo, not at all fond of girls, keen for a swordfight about every ten minutes of his waking life, and both depressed and elated at the advent of the 5th grade at the opening of his school next week. If I could show you a picture of him you'd agree that he's a very promising young man.

And I can show you a picture of him.

He's up there, just above, my first wife's hand is touching him. Look carefully. You'll see him and her both. Together in one instant, in one impossible image.

If you are a parent, you know as all parents know, the single darkest and most secret fear of all. You know what I mean. Yes, that one. The one we never mention. The fear that it is forbidden to speak of. The one we don't speak of ... ever. The one that we push out of our thoughts before it even finishes forming. It is the fear you see there in that photograph. The photograph that shows you looking down at your murdered child.

That's what I saw in the photograph. I saw a wife and a son -- not mine, I knew, but mine just the same -- frozen forever in an instant that I prayed would never come to me, that would remain just what it was, a photograph of a woman and a child I recognized but did not know.

At some point in the last few days, I put my arms around my wife as we both looked out the kitchen window. From our small window you can see across the green and brindle hills down to the ocean where the slow Pacific swells roll onto Main Beach where a volleyball game is always on the schedule and the seagulls and surfers share the waves.

"Every single day," I said, " I thank God above that we are all here, in this good place, close to each other and still kept safe from things like those going on in Russia."

Next week my stepson will walk up the hill and take the bus to his first day of school. Seats will be assigned. He'll be given books and lists of supplies he must have. Nothing unusual will happen. In the afternoon, he will come home. My wife and I will have dinner with him, he'll do his homework and go to bed. It will be like that day after day. An ordinary life in an ordinary town in an ordinary time.

And the years will flow by and he'll go from strength to strength, from one bright moment to the next. His mother and I will watch him move ever upward into life as he gradually grows away from us and into his own life. This is how it was meant to be and how it will be. He will never be found in a photograph like the one I saw today. There's no place for him in the 41st photograph, the one I couldn't look at but saw just the same.

I am willing to do anything, anything at all, no matter what it may be, to keep him out of that photograph. That's my answer to what I saw. My question is, "Are you?"

Vanderleun : December 17, 14  |  Your Say (29)  | PermaLink: Permalink

Coming soon enough to a city near you. Because.... "it's judgment that defeats us."

132 children shot dead as Taliban gunmen storm military-run school in Peshawar in Pakistan The young boy described how, after they burst in shouting 'Allah-o-Akbar' - which means 'God is greatest' - one of them shouted: 'There are so many children beneath the benches, go and get them'.

He said: 'I saw a pair of big black boots coming towards me, this guy was probably hunting for students hiding beneath the benches.' Khan said he felt searing pain as he was shot in both his legs just below the knee. He decided to play dead, adding: 'I folded my tie and pushed it into my mouth so that I wouldn't scream. 'The man with big boots kept on looking for students and pumping bullets into their bodies. I lay as still as I could and closed my eyes, waiting to get shot again. 'My body was shivering. I saw death so close and I will never forget the black boots approaching me -- I felt as though it was death that was approaching me.'

Kurtz: I've seen horrors... horrors that you've seen.

But you have no right to call me a murderer. You have a right to kill me. You have a right to do that... but you have no right to judge me. It's impossible for words to describe what is necessary to those who do not know what horror means. Horror... Horror has a face... and you must make a friend of horror. Horror and moral terror are your friends. If they are not, then they are enemies to be feared. They are truly enemies! I remember when I was with Special Forces... seems a thousand centuries ago. We went into a camp to inoculate some children. We left the camp after we had inoculated the children for polio, and this old man came running after us and he was crying. He couldn't see. We went back there, and they had come and hacked off every inoculated arm. There they were in a pile. A pile of little arms. And I remember... I... I... I cried, I wept like some grandmother. I wanted to tear my teeth out; I didn't know what I wanted to do! And I want to remember it. I never want to forget it... I never want to forget. And then I realized... like I was shot... like I was shot with a diamond... a diamond bullet right through my forehead. And I thought, my God... the genius of that! The genius! The will to do that! Perfect, genuine, complete, crystalline, pure. And then I realized they were stronger than we, because they could stand that these were not monsters, these were men... trained cadres. These men who fought with their hearts, who had families, who had children, who were filled with love... but they had the strength... the strength... to do that. If I had ten divisions of those men, our troubles here would be over very quickly. You have to have men who are moral... and at the same time who are able to utilize their primordial instincts to kill without feeling... without passion... without judgment... without judgment! Because it's judgment that defeats us. Apocalypse Now (1979) - Quotes - IMDb

gerardvanderleun : December 16, 14  |  Your Say (17)  | PermaLink: Permalink

I'll see whatever diversity twerking pop culture you got and raise you three Celtic women.

gerardvanderleun : December 16, 14  |  Your Say (7)  | PermaLink: Permalink

Grace Notes

gerardvanderleun : December 15, 14  |  Your Say (9)  | PermaLink: Permalink

Okay, this holiday lights thing might just be getting a wee bit out of hand.



"Welcome to the houses on Manning Street.
We have 16 houses with Christmas lights coordinated to music. Christmas songs will change and be added through the weeks. We are also playing the music throughout the neighborhood so people can walk or you can tune your car radio to 92.5."
Yucaipa Christmas

gerardvanderleun : December 14, 14  |  Your Say (12)  | PermaLink: Permalink

Seems some people in Berkeley want to have the army in their city ..... Oh really? Is that what they want? Well, they need to be careful what they wish for.

Speaking as someone who has been in Berkeley when the army showed up; someone who's been shot at, chased through the streets, and then gassed from helicopters, everybody out and about in Berkeley might want to just shut up, go home, sit down and chill out.

This is how the army in the cities rolls. And it gets worse.

Well, I seen the fires burnin'
And the local people turnin'
On the merchants and the shops
Who used to sell their brooms and mops
And every other household item
Watched the mob just turn and bite 'em
And they say it served 'em right
Because a few of them are white,
And it's the same across the nation
Black and white discrimination
Yellin' "You can't understand me!"
'N all that other jazz they hand me
In the papers and TV and
All that mass stupidity
That seems to grow more every day
Each time you hear some nitwit say
He wants to go and do you in
Because the color of your skin
Just don't appeal to him
(No matter if it's black or white)
Because he's out for blood tonight

You know we got to sit around at home
And watch this thing begin
But I bet there won't be many live
To see it really end
'Cause the fire in the street
Ain't like the fire in the heart
And in the eyes of all these people
Don't you know that this could start
On any street in any town
In any state if any clown
Decides that now's the time to fight
For some ideal he thinks is right
And if a million more agree
There ain't no Great Society

Blow your harmonica, son!

gerardvanderleun : December 12, 14  |  Your Say (12)  | PermaLink: Permalink

"I'm not a singer. I'm a shouter." -- Grace Slick

gerardvanderleun : December 11, 14  |  Your Say (3)  | PermaLink: Permalink

The Amazing Grace Christmas House was located in Pleasant Grove, Utah and designed and programmed by Richard Holdman. A small little charity box placed in front of the display has raised more than $40,000 for the Utah Make-a-Wish Foundation. The display started in 2006 but traffic became too much of an issue and is no longer running.

You doubt me? Here's the complete show from 2010 in all its 15 glorious minutes of relentless inevitability. You can see why it had traffic backed up on the interstate all the way to Salt Lake City:

Click Here to Continue
gerardvanderleun : December 11, 14  |  Your Say (1)  | PermaLink: Permalink

The best. Just the best! A group of high school students gave the crowd a treat when they imagined how a group of monks under a vow of silence might put on a Christmas program.

gerardvanderleun : December 11, 14  |  Your Say (11)  | PermaLink: Permalink

Grace Notes

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Were we led all that way for
Birth or Death? There was a Birth, certainly,
We had evidence and no doubt.

         -- T. S. Eliot, "The Journey of the Magi"

Theirs was the Age of Myth; a world where night was not dimmed by the web of lights that now obscures the stars. Their nights were lit by flaring torches, dim oil lamps, guttering candles; by the phases of the moon and the broad shimmering river of the Milky Way. As the sun declined and night ascended, life withdrew into shuttered and barred homes. Only the very rich or the very poor were abroad in the dark.

The night sky, now so thin and distant, so seldom really seen, was to them as thick and close as a handful of coal studded with diamonds. They could turn it in their mind's eye even as it turned above them. They reclined on their hill sides, their roofs, or in rooms built for viewing and marking the moon and the stars. They watched it all revolve above them and sang the centuries down. They remembered. They kept records and told tales. They saw beings in the heavens -- gods and animals, giants and insects, all sparking the origins of myth -- and they knew that in some way all was connected to all; as above, so below, "on Earth as it is in Heaven". They studied the patterns of it all and from those repeating patterns fashioned our first science, astrology.

And, like all our other celebrated sciences since, they looked to astrology to give them hints about the future, about what they should do, what they should expect, what they should become. They looked to their science then, as many look to their science now, to remove their doubt.

In time stronger, more intricately argued sciences would rise upon the structures of the proto-sciences of astrology and alchemy; sciences that chained demons with data. These new data-based sciences would push the first sciences into the realm of myth, speculation, superstition and popular fantasy. And, as it is with our advertising, promise, big promise is the soul of our brave new sciences.

The new sciences, you see, are much, much more about "Reality" than the old sciences. They will never be tossed aside as so many playthings of mankind's youth. The authority of our astronomy, our biology, our physics, our chemistry and others is, we fervently believe, as certain as the pole star. Unlike astrology and alchemy, they will never be questioned; they will be built upon.

It is a central tenet of our faith in science that the new will encompass the old in one endless and eternal conservation of sense and sensibility. In this cathedral we worship a database. We can see outward to the edge of what is, and downward into time was to (almost) the moment of Creation. We can see inward into (almost) the mute heart of matter. We have the proven method. We have the hard evidence. We know that nothing is, in time, beyond our knowing. All doubt has been removed. We are the Alpha and Omega. Our science is now as eternal and as deeply grounded in truth as... well, as astrology was in 5 B.C.

Somewhere around 5 B.C. three of the world's leading astronomers/astrologers noticed something unusual in the sky. It could have been a comet. It could have been a supernova. It could have been a rare conjunction of Saturn and Jupiter. Whatever it was, it was strange enough for them to travel towards it. Or so it is said. Or so it is written. Or so it is remembered from the time of myth.

Myth or history? What is the reality of this road trip towards an obscure birth in a wretched town, during a not very pleasant passage in history, over 2,000 years in our past?

We do not know. We cannot know. As it is in so much else that we ignore it is not given to us to know.

We have only shards of pottery and fragments of texts snatched from desert caves or teased out of the soil with tin trowels and brushes. We have only the sifted detritus of history; a global jigsaw puzzle where ninety-nine percent of the pieces have long gone to dust.

Our past is a handful of ashes. It is beyond our gift to ever know the difference between an inspiring folk tale and the eyewitness accounts of something that, even today, would occupy the realm of the miraculous. For today, in the realm of the mysteries, we no longer have any time for the good or the beautiful; we have no time for miracles. We have only time for denigration.

In 2004 Time and Newsweek, endeavored, in their ham-fisted way, to gin up some circulation with articles that purported to "examine" the miracles surrounding the intersection of the divine with a world now buried two millennia deep in the ash of the Earth. We shall probably see the same sort of thing this year. The cheapening of the spirit in this culture,"the expense of reason in a waste of shame," by those whose lamp of the soul burns low, is now as predicable as the winter solstice.

In the manner of these publications, and the habits of the sodden intellects that grind them out for small silver, a lot of time was spent on the "question" of the Virginity of Mary, the mother of Christ. It's a scurrilous bit of work. A "hit piece" on Mary, in the jargon of the magazine trade. For all the preening of these publications, the articles were just two chunks of thinly veiled anti-Christian porn, sops to secular hedonists in search of a cheap thrill by imbibing another hit of their favorite pap. These kinds of magazine articles always strike a chord of sadness in me, because I know at last the true cost of creating them. They are a curious kind of self-damnation in life, and, as a result, a waste of life.

Beneath all the buffed prose and appeals to experts and phoned-in quotes from scholars, the articles rose to little more than the coarse chortling of fraternity boys in the early drunken hours of the morning: "A virgin? Right! Sure. Any wife'd tell her husband that if she suddenly..."

In the offices of Time and Newsweek, there is no room for wonder beyond the fact that, for fewer people every passing year, they are still publishing and still making payroll. So far. Anything else, anything that might have within it the spark of the divine, is fit for nothing except denigration. This belief squats at the cold dead center of their editorial philosophy, a philosophy they share with untold millions of our coarsened fellow citizens. And still they cannot comprehend why year after year, no matter how cheap they price their subscriptions, their circulation continues to decline. In none of their editorial meetings do any of those attending look about them and declare that they have become "an alien people clutching their gods" in a land that finds them more and more dispensable.

We will leave them in their conference rooms high above the Avenue of the Americas, and wish them a "Happy Holiday. Have a good one." It is far more interesting to ponder, instead, those ancient ancestors who had no doubts that what they had seen in the heavens was unusual enough to travel.

In 5 B.C. "travel" was not something undertaken lightly. It involved, across distances that would seem trivial today, risks of life and death at every turn. It required wealth and endurance. Few traveled for pleasure. To travel at all required a motivation far beyond the ordinary. So, at the very least, while we cannot know what was in the sky in those days, we can be certain it was something very unusual.

In his short story, "The Star," Arthur C. Clarke's Jesuit narrator of the far future discovers the remnants of a civilization destroyed by a violent nova so that its light might announce the birth of Christ on Earth. The story has that ironic twist that is popular with authors and pleasing to readers. I remember it as making an impression on me when I was around 12 years old. But the story does not age well because the science of it, like all science, does not age well. The story is just 53 years old.

In 1957, when I was twelve years old, we all lived in a far smaller universe with far fewer stars for God to destroy by way of cosmic birth announcements. Now that the inventory of His stars has increased a billion fold, I think it is safe to say He could have found one to suit His purpose that didn't involve destroying a blameless alien race. He could simply pick one deeper in the field and, well, ramp up the volume. That sort of thing is just an afterthought once You've got omnipotence. It might even do double duty if You could use a star in an area that might need a few more heavy elements across the next brief one or two billion years of Your plan.

Sages and mystics, Eliot and Clarke, and a host of others have all had their turns with the story of The Star. In the end it remains what it was when it began, a story. The story of a road trip by three astrologers, kings, wise men. A journey by men who saw something special in the heavens and determined to follow it wherever it led, no matter what the cost.

To see something special. To see something beyond yourself and your imaginings. To follow it wherever it leads. To always remain prepared for miracle. That is the inner music of the story of The Star. Like all stories that survive, it is the music of the heart and not of the head, and like the heart, it will endure.

"Were we led all that way for
Birth or Death? There was a Birth, certainly,
We had evidence and no doubt."

To have "evidence and no doubt." That is what those that put themselves forward as our "wise men" seem to propose to us day after day from their sterile rooms high above the avenues. They have the "data" from which we should derive, they insist, doubt about all that for which they have no evidence, no data.

First and foremost in their blinded vision is their iron requirement that we should doubt the original myths that have made us and sustained us as individuals and as a people across the centuries. In their pointless world, they would have us cast off the old myths and embrace their "new and improved myths -- complete with evidence;" myths made of purposeless matter "hovering in the dark."

And seeing what these "wise men" have become, we turn. We turn away.

Instead, every year a bit more it seems, a tide has shifted in the hearts of men and we turn like a lodestone to the deeper myths of the human heart; that place where The Star will always shine -- always within and yet always beyond us. In the end, the Mystery is the Gift.

Vanderleun : December 11, 14  |  Your Say (57)  | PermaLink: Permalink

gerardvanderleun : December 10, 14  |  Your Say (1)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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In only 30 years capitalism made everything in this picture fit into your pocket.

It’s a turnaround jump shot
It’s everybody jumpstart
It’s every generation throws a hero up the pop charts
Medicine is magical and magical is art
Thinking of the Boy in the Bubble
And the baby with the baboon heart.....

gerardvanderleun : December 9, 14  |  Your Say (6)  | PermaLink: Permalink

5-Minute Arguments

Discovered in the House of Eratosthenes "This clip didn’t make it on to SNL this weekend…it was, as they say, 'cut for time'."

gerardvanderleun : December 9, 14  |  Your Say (7)  | PermaLink: Permalink

Mindboggling Haut Mexican Cultural Artifact. From the same culture that brought the world the bouncy car. On the other hand it is refreshingly direct and without a smidgen of political correctness. HT:Stever Sailer

gerardvanderleun : December 8, 14  |  Your Say (13)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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With Jann Wenner's special report on Gay Rape Fantasies. -- Twitter

Street Artist Sabo Blasts Lena Dunham, Bill Clinton in Fake Rolling Stone Covers - The Hollywood Reporter

A former U.S. Marine, Sabo has recently been scrutinized by the Secret Servicefor a series of tweets that appeared to threaten President Barack Obama. (His video of his encounter with two Secret Service agents at his apartment has received more than 200,000 views on YouTube.)
In addition to posting banners on utility boxes on the Westside, Saboplaced smaller versions of the spoofed Rolling Stone covers among magazines at various Los Angeles newsstands.

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gerardvanderleun : December 8, 14  |  Your Say (21)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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We'd finished filming John and Yoko for the video a day or so before he was shot to death. It was their last video, but of course we didn't know it at the time. There was film of them holding hands and walking in Central Park in the place that would later become "Strawberry Fields." We'd filmed them rolling naked in bed together in a Soho Art Gallery where she looked healthy and ample and he looked small and slight, with skin that was almost transluscent. I remember being slightly surprised by the fact that Lennon's need for Ono was so constant and palpable. He was seldom more than two feet away from her side and had the disconcerting habit of calling her "Mommy" whenever they spoke.

My role was as "executive producer" which really meant that I was to stand around with a roll of hundred dollar bills and pay-off the teamsters and solve other problems with copious applications of money. It was an odd job in more ways than one, but I was grateful to have it at the time.

We'd sent the last of the film to the lab, and the director, Ethan Russell, had gone back to Los Angeles to begin editing. The crew had dispersed and I'd taken to my bed racked with pain. The job, this time, had been so tough and high stress that my neck had gone out. I could barely turn my head without feeling as if a sledge was hammering a hot-needle into the cervical vertebrae. I was lying carefully propped on the bed eating Bufferin as if they were Tic-Tacs and trying not to move. My neck was held in one of those tight foam collars. Not moving was the best thing to do at the time and I was doing it with all my might.

It was a small one-bedroom apartment on the East Side of Manhattan. My first wife and I were there after three years of living in London, Paris, the Algarve and other European locations. She was eight months pregnant with our daughter and looked as if she was trying to smuggle a basketball across state lines for immoral purposes. Her mood, never really cheerful, was not improved by her situation.

The apartment was on loan from her uncle's girlfriend. I was down to my last few thousand dollars and was looking for a job. The film gig had been a gift from my old friend Ethan, and I'd been glad to get it. But it was over and, with a baby banging on the door of the world, things were not looking up. At the time, the only thing looking up was me since my neck required me to lie flat and gaze at the ceiling. It had been a rough two weeks but I thought things would certainly improve.

And of course, that's when things got worse. It got worse in the way most things do, the phone rang and my wife called out, "It's for you."

Some New York wag once said, "Age fourteen is the last time in your life when you're glad the phone is for you."

I groped blindly to the side of the bed and picked up the extension. It was Ethan calling from an editing room in Los Angeles. "John's been shot. He's dead."

Click Here to Continue
Vanderleun : December 8, 14  |  Your Say (70)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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I regret that the new entries have fallen off, but I am dealing with some problems involving my left eye that make it difficult to type. These should be cleared up soon.

gerardvanderleun : December 6, 14  |  Your Say (9)  | PermaLink: Permalink

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

Close But No Cigar

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Probably Means Nothing

Russian Food Suppliers Have Begun Halting Shipments | Zero Hedge Russia's Vedomosti reports, citing vegetable producer Belaya Dacha, juice maker Sady Pridoniya and others, Russian suppliers are suspending food shipments to stores because of unpredictable FX movements. And it is about to get worse: very soon Russians may have to live without imported alcohol because at least on supplier of offshore booze.



A Billionaire Dinosaur Forced Me Gay

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The year is 2014 and dinosaurs have gained control of the world economy
due to exceptionally accurate stock predictions. After graduating from NYU with a business degree, John is hired to be the assistant for one of the largest trading firms on Wall Street. His boss, the CEO of the company is highly regarded as the best businessman of the century. Only difference is that he is a dinosaur!
- by Hunter Fox.

The Jew today is called on to forget.

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To light the menorah on Chanukah is to pass on a signal fire that has been kept lit for thousands of years.
From the first holiday of Passover, after which the freed slaves kindled the first Menorah, to the final holiday of Chanukah, that light burns on. The historical cycle of Jewish holidays begins with Moshe confronting Pharaoh and demanding the freedom of the Jewish people. It ends with the Maccabees standing up to the tyranny of Antiochus and fighting for the right of the Jewish people to live under their own rule on their own land. The lights of the menorah embody the spirit of the Jewish people. A spirit that has outlived the atrocities of every tyrant. In the heart of the flame that has burned for a thousand years lives the soul of a people.
Sultan Knish: A Dangerous Holiday

GENERAL DYNAMICS (Astronautics) SPACE CARDS

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- an album on Flickr
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Conservative Republicans Take It In the Shorts. "But.... but.... we won!"

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Van_der_Leun | Twitter
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The New Churchill

The house itself is like a woman grown old, missing a few teeth, gone thick and manly.

But you can tell the ruin used to be something. The old frame shows something of the heretofores. I heard tell a captain of local industry built it to prove to everybody that he had finally made it big in this old world. He said prove it to everybody, but really meant to himself, I'll bet. The bank took it from him the minute a dark cloud appeared on the horizon, and showed him that the world has no opinion.
Sippican Cottage



Depravity will keep going as far as it will go.

Terrorism, like all perversions, needs stronger and stronger stimuli to achieve the same result. The door to hell is self-sealing. The damned vie with each other to burrow deeper into it. Upstairs, Downstairs | Belmont Club



The blue ribbon in the “Self-Hating White Man” category has to be placed on the coffin of David Ruenzel

That’s because he made a living writing about “white privilege” for the inexplicably respectable Southern Poverty Law Center—and he was killed by two black dudes. ...While hiking, no less. Hit Me Harder, I’ve Been Bad! - Taki's Magazine



Life On Mars

Our lives must be in some strange way — beyond any passing subjective enthusiasm — worth living. For, Someone went to a lot of trouble to put us here. Whether He also planted microbes on Mars for us to find, in our season, is an open question. I can’t see why He would, but then, I am not privy to all of His intentions; only the ones He has told us about. - - Star dust : Essays in Idleness



Now Even Dieting Causes Global Warming

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When you lose weight, where does the fat go? The most common misconception among doctors,
dieticians and personal trainers is that the missing mass has been converted into energy or heat. "There is surprising ignorance and confusion about the metabolic process of weight loss," says Professor Andrew Brown, head of the UNSW School of Biotechnology and Biomolecular Sciences. "The correct answer is that most of the mass is breathed out as carbon dioxide. It goes into thin air," says the study's lead author, Ruben Meerman, a physicist and Australian TV science presenter.


Anyone here ever been to Pakistan?

I have. Shithole doesn't even scratch the surface.

That place is beyond shithole, far in excess of any shithole the Western, Christian mind can conceive. Hell, it's not even a real country! It's just a name, stuck onto a cesspool full of human filth and the hapless creatures being pulled by that filth down to the bottom. Pakistan is a made-up country, you know; history knows no "Pakistan", and there is, was, and never will be any such thing as a "native Pakistani". There are only tribes, and money, and drugs, and misery, stuck together by Islam into a fetid mass that can never and will never endure. Call it Yugoslavia East.
One time in Karachi, a lady walked up to me with a baby in her arms, crying and begging me for money for the baby. At first I thought the "baby" was some sort of doll, but as she got closer I looked closer and that's when I realized she was carrying no doll but an actual, mummified dead human baby, its face painted with cosmetics.
I ran and am still running today.
I am a Catholic, and I believe in Jesus, but I have to tell you in all honesty that if by some miracle every Muslim on the planet dropped suddenly dead I wouldn't feel a thing, and that's wrong, but it's honestly how I feel. I wish I didn't, but I do. I'd like for one day to go by, just one day, without having to think about those lunatics and wonder what nightmare they're cooking up next.
"But you can't tar all Muslims with the same brush! What about nice Mr. Dirkadirka down at the Schwarma Hut?" Well, what about him? He's nice now, but what about tomorrow? Do you think he'd be nice if his kind were numerous enough to call the shots, or if someone in your town were to do something for which the Prophet demands death? That same nice, friendly guy at the schwarma stand today might slit your kid's throat tomorrow. We certainly didn't mind tarring the Japanese in America with the same brush -- and for far, far less than American Muslims have done.
"Nice" Muslims? Sure, there are nice Muslims. There were plenty of nice people in the Cheka, the NKVD, the SS and the Ustase, too. No, counting on the niceness of Muslims is like tiptoeing past the devil.
God help us. How can we fight an enemy that God won't allow us to hate?
Shibes Meadow Comment on Pakistini Taliban attack school, kill 140



The Left loved the Communists killing countless millions of innocent people

both because they love the idea of corpses piled up so high that they blacken the sun,

and because the Communists were foes of Christianity and civilization. But the Reds were civilized themselves enough to want things like running water and food and life, and so were unwilling to ignite a nuke and bring about the final and utter semisexual craving of the Left, which is obliteration. The Jihad are far more attractive, because they are vile, violent, and dishonorable on every level.
What Wages Pay the Unpaid Apologists for Utter Evil? | John C. Wright's Journal



The Task

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All Europe contributed to the making of Kurtz; and by and by I learned that, most appropriately, the International Society for the Suppression of Savage Customs had entrusted him with the making of a report, for its future guidance.
And he had written it, too. I’ve seen it. I’ve read it. It was eloquent, vibrating with eloquence, but too high–strung, I think. Seventeen pages of close writing he had found time for! But this must have been before his—let us say—nerves, went wrong, and caused him to preside at certain midnight dances ending with unspeakable rites, which—as far as I reluctantly gathered from what I heard at various times—were offered up to him—do you understand?—to Mr. Kurtz himself. But it was a beautiful piece of writing. The opening paragraph, however, in the light of later information, strikes me now as ominous. He began with the argument that we whites, from the point of development we had arrived at, ‘must necessarily appear to them [savages] in the nature of supernatural beings—we approach them with the might of a deity,’ and so on, and so on. ‘By the simple exercise of our will we can exert a power for good practically unbounded,’ etc., etc. From that point he soared and took me with him. The peroration was magnificent, though difficult to remember, you know. It gave me the notion of an exotic Immensity ruled by an august Benevolence. It made me tingle with enthusiasm. This was the unbounded power of eloquence—of words—of burning noble words. There were no practical hints to interrupt the magic current of phrases, unless a kind of note at the foot of the last page, scrawled evidently much later, in an unsteady hand, may be regarded as the exposition of a method. It was very simple, and at the end of that moving appeal to every altruistic sentiment it blazed at you, luminous and terrifying, like a flash of lightning in a serene sky: ‘Exterminate all the brutes!’
-- Conrad, Heart of Darkness HT: Fatman

Everyone knows something basic about government: if it gets too powerful, too big, and too all-encompassing, it becomes tyrannical and destructive.

Law enforcement is carrying out the will of an ever-increasing monster

with billions of tentacles reaching out further and further. If they go too far, often if not most of the time, its because they're being pressured and directed to by their bosses. For every "free speech zone" there's a cop arresting people for expressing their freedom of speech in the "wrong place." For every city ordinance against smoking, there's a cop writing someone up for smoking in the wrong place. For every regulation against trans fats, there's a law enforcement official reporting on a restaurant serving the wrong food.
Word Around the Net: GOOD COP/BAD COP



“Backlash” is the Sasquatch of liberal journalism.

The sad fact of the matter is the whites never return fire.

Year after year the incidents of Muslim terrorism pile up and nothing is ever done about it. Maybe if Romper Stomper were true, there would be fewer Muslim’s to cause trouble in the civilized nations. Of course, that’s true everything else. Blacks riot and everyone worries about the white backlash that never comes. Whenever a group of lunatics gets out of hand, the first thing we see in the news is fear of a backlash from the normals, but it never comes.
-- Z Blog



He said Mr Monis was “without a single blur” on his character and had been “preaching peace”.

“Without a single blur”. Sadly, questions about Mr. Monis’ character are likely to remain unresolved now that he’s dead.

But uppermost in the minds of many, especially those who have been in a jam, is the question of ‘how did you make bail for a rap sheet like that?’ How did Monis pay for all his lawyers? Were the lawyers public defenders? If so they must have been pretty good.
Belmont Club » Making Bail



1,000 Hues

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It has been called “part objet d’art, part meditative practice,” Clemens Habicht’s puzzle consists of 1000 pieces, all with an individual hue from the CMYK color gamut. -- Visual News

RickRuns: Rick Perry's Statement On Australian Hostage Situation

"As a nation, we must be prepared to terminate ISIS with superior military power. We must work with our allies to build a grand coalition of civilized nations who will stand united against this evil and care for refugees of the conflict. We must be committed to the principles of freedom against evil ideologies around the world. By focusing on those three components, ISIS will one day be left on ‘the ash heap of history." | Truth Revolt



66 years ago....

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This is the story of a beaver named Geronimo and a simpler time of ingenuity, when the rodents parachuted into Idaho’s backcountry. - - KBOI 2

The Real "Doc" Holliday

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The violence only took thirty seconds,
left three men dead, and several men injured. While no one knows for sure who fired first, it was Doc’s bullet that first rendered a fatal shot. It is even written in some accounts that Clanton was not armed. But finding the truth about what happened in that gunfight is about as difficult as finding Bigfoot. In the end, Holliday, along with Earp, was put on trial for murder. He was exonerated, but several attempts were made on his life over the next few years. He eventually made his way to Colorado where he increasingly became dependent on alcohol and opium as his health deteriorated.
TIFO

The Conned Can't Admit They've Been Conned [Bumped]

Social justice fanatics may be fanatical

because they are justifying to themselves the amount of money and time that they spent on getting a Marxist degree that sets them at odds with their surrounding society. They feel that, unless they join the class struggle, their expenditure has been wasted. This behavior tends to present itself frequently in victims of scams: the more that they have spent on getting into the scam, the more fervently that they want to believe in it.
Social Justice Warrioring As Justification for Student Loan Expenses | Henry Dampier



Does Truth Matter to the Feminist Left?

Many of those who describe themselves as “journalists” these days are more interested in moral positioning

and the advancement of their agendas than in the attainment of objective truth. Where most of us are primarily concerned with whether a given claim is correct, others seem more attentive to how we react to that claim in the first place. Did you ask questions about Jackie’s story as it was reported? If so, you must hate women, work for the patriarchy, or hope to prove that nobody is ever raped. Did you believe Jackie uncritically and with a full-throated roar? Excellent, then you must be a good person who wants to help women, move the country forward, and do something concrete about the issue of sexual assault. It’s really that simple, my dear.
| National Review



“Conservative Votes, Liberal Victories.”

Why, even when conservatives win elections, does the nation continue to move inexorably leftward? As a friend from that era wrote me recently, other than our victory in the Cold War, what do we conservatives have to show for all of our political victories? -- Jonathan Gruber: Honest Liberal



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