Comments or suggestions: Gerard Van der Leun
Son said "Pop, you gonna drive me to drinkin' if you don't quit riding that Hot-Rod Lincoln"

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We had flames comin' from out of the side
Feel the tension, man, what a ride!
I said, "Look out, boys, I've got a license to fly"
And that Caddy pulled over and let us by

Now all of a sudden she started to knockin'
And down in the dips she started to rockin'
I looked in my mirror; a red light was blinkin'
The cops was after my Hot Rod Lincoln....

North Korea's new leader Kim Jong Un (4th from left) salutes as he and his uncle Jang Song-thaek (3rd from left) accompany the hearse carrying the coffin of late North Korean leader Kim Jong Il during his funeral procession in Pyongyang, on December 28, 2011. --North Korea Mourns Kim Jong Il - Alan Taylor - In Focus - The Atlantic



Posted by gerardvanderleun Dec 28, 2011 11:13 AM | Comments (4)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Something Transcendental: Loreena McKennitt sings "The Dark Night of the Soul" (A poem by St. John of the Cross)

When the world is too much with you, it's not a bad idea to spend some time with St. John and the Eternals. Suggested by The Anchoress' compilation today where she shares:

“The Lord measures out perfection neither by the multitude nor the magnitude of our deeds, by by the manner in which we perform them.”
— St. John of the Cross

"Oh noche que juntaste amado con amada, amada en el amado transformada!"

Upon a darkened night
The flame of love was burning in my breast
And by a lantern bright
I fled my house while all in quiet rest

Shrouded by the night
And by the secret stair I quickly fled
The veil concealed my eyes
While all within lay quiet as the dead

Oh night thou was my guide
Oh night more loving than the rising sun
Oh night that joined the lover
To the beloved one
Transforming each of them into the other

Upon that misty night
In secrecy, beyond such mortal sight
Without a guide or light
Than that which burned so deeply in my heart

That fire t'was led me on
And shone more bright than of the midday sun
To where he waited still
It was a place where no one else could come

Oh night thou was my guide
Oh night more loving than the rising sun
Oh night that joined the lover
To the beloved one
Transforming each of them into the other

Within my pounding heart
Which kept itself entirely for him
He fell into his sleep
Beneath the cedars all my love I gave
And by the fortress walls
The wind would brush his hair against his brow
And with its smoothest hand
caressed my every sense it would allow

Oh night thou was my guide
Oh night more loving than the rising sun
Oh night that joined the lover
To the beloved one
Transforming each of them into the other

I lost myself to him
And laid my face upon my lovers breast
And care and grief grew dim
As in the mornings mist became the light
There they dimmed amongst the lilies fair
There they dimmed amongst the lilies fair
There they dimmed amongst the lilies fair


Full poem in the original and in translation after the jump.

Continued...

Posted by Vanderleun Dec 26, 2011 2:34 AM | Comments (5)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Inch. Time. Foot. Gem: Today is My Birthday and for This Day I Am Deeply Grateful

A lord asked Takuan, a Zen Teacher, to suggest how he might pass the time. He felt his days very long attending his office and sitting stiffly to receive the homage of others.

Takuan wrote eight Chinese characters and gave them to the man:

Not twice this day

Inch time foot gem.

This day will not come again.

Each minute is worth a priceless gem.



Posted by gerardvanderleun Dec 26, 2011 1:00 AM | Comments (19)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Something Wonderful: "And it should be, it should be, it SHOULD be like that! Because Horton was faithful! "
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Copyright © Jim Benton


Posted by Vanderleun Dec 20, 2011 2:57 AM | Comments (56)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Havel vs. Hitchens: Blogosphere have you no sense of decency or proportion?

It's rightly called by the clumsy and unattractive term "Blogosphere," a word that does not trip lightly off the tongue. It has, as usual, no sense of proportion and less sense of shame. This has been particularly evident in the last few days with the passing of two men, Vaclav Havel and Christopher Hitchens.

Along with untold hundreds of other's I had my pass at Hitchens soon after his death foretold was announced as a fait accompli. I was saddened by his passing as much as I am saddened by the passing of many whom I do not know except via their work but for whom I come to have more than a passing interest if not a bit of respect. I wrote what I had to say about Hitchens fairly early on the day his death was announced but was unprepared for the tsunami of comment that came along on the heels of my own marginally interesting reflections and continued..... and continued.... and continued... until one would have thought that the revealed author of the New Testament had passed on without finishing the Book of Revelations.

Continued...

Posted by gerardvanderleun Dec 18, 2011 10:05 AM | Comments (10)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Death of an Atheist

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We dance round in a ring and suppose,
But the Secret sits in the middle and knows.

-- Robert Frost

The morning news informs me that as Vanity Fair puts it, "Christopher Hitchens—the incomparable critic, masterful rhetorician, fiery wit, and fearless bon vivant—died today at the age of 62."

That sad and brief announcement takes no notice of the central issue surrounding Hitchens' death, the question of whether or not the West's best known atheist, being dead, finally "knows" if his atheism is correct.

This issue is exemplified by Allah at Hot Air who actually writes, in an uncharacteristic lapse of lucidity: "I wonder which [Hitchens] anticipated more eagerly -- the end of the pain or finally knowing if he was right about you know what. I suspect he was right. I hope he was wrong."

I always find the attempts of semi-nonbelievers to straddle and still remain sensible to be 'interesting.' They want to have the experience and yet miss the meaning. In brief:

Dear Allah, If Hitchens is "right" about his atheism then he cannot "know" if he is right since he no longer exists in any natural or supranatural form in which knowing is part of the equation. That which was the knowing part of Hitchens is now simply, in the full meaning of the phrase, "null and void." Sincerely
P.S. The end of pain is always anticipated more eagerly. Trust me on this one.

Faith is like the final phase of Hold 'Em: You're either all in or you're busted. You put up or you shut up; the latter position, alas, seems lost on the atheists of our blighted era who are, to say the least, overeager to "share."

Continued...

Posted by gerardvanderleun Dec 16, 2011 8:27 AM | Comments (26)  | QuickLink: Permalink
A VOTERS' GUIDE TO REPUBLICANS by Bill Whittle

EVERYBODY knows that Republicans are EVIL! What kind of Evil? Greedy, Fascist, Racist evil -- the worst kind! Bill Whittle unravels the facts behind this perfect storm of evil in a breezy fashion that provides a hurricane of historical data to lift the white robes of even the most stalwart Democrats.



Posted by gerardvanderleun Dec 15, 2011 6:58 PM | Comments (1)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Sermon in Stone

Suffer us not to mock ourselves with falsehood

Teach us to care and not to care

Teach us to sit still

Even among these rocks....


-- Eliot, Ash Wednesday

Film by Henry Jun Wah Lee, Evosia Studios. Via Large, small, infinite | Lileks.



Posted by Vanderleun Dec 14, 2011 4:58 AM | Comments (4)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Kaa-BOOM!: An errant cannonball's tale. [Bumped and Updated w/ Map]

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MAP FROM THE CREATOR @ Mythbusters’ Cannonball Map - PerceptionBuilder.com via Cannonball Run via Neatorama

My favorite, laff-riot story of the week has to be the Mythbusters' cannonball that went a bit beyond its range. It began with something seemingly simple to accomplish; firing a cannonball at a bunch of water tanks. "No problem," say the Mythbusters' hosts, "Nada problema. We've done this THOUSANDS of time." (Or words to that effect)

In my experience, any time human beings start to mess around with explosives, flammable substances, fireworks, or artillery with the attitude of "No problem we've done this THOUSANDS of times," that's the time you should start digging a deep hole to hide in.

Continued...

Posted by gerardvanderleun Dec 10, 2011 1:05 PM | Comments (12)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Something Wonderful: Dream Rangers -- "One is always nearer by not keeping still."

Yes, we've been for here to there before, but let's take that ride again.

"listen: there's a hell of a good universe next door; let's go" — E.E. Cummings



Posted by Vanderleun Dec 9, 2011 1:19 AM | Comments (5)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Something Wonderful: On Hyndford Street by Van Morrison

"On Hyndford Street where you could feel the silence
At half past eleven on long summer nights
As the wireless played Radio Luxembourg
And the voices whispered across Beechie River
And in the quietness we sank into restful slumber in silence
And carried on dreaming in God."



Posted by Vanderleun Dec 8, 2011 1:39 PM | Comments (3)  | QuickLink: Permalink
North America's Energy Resources

They'll tell you we are running out. They lie.

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From North American Energy Inventory, December 2011



Posted by gerardvanderleun Dec 7, 2011 7:30 PM | Comments (10)  | QuickLink: Permalink
G2E Media GmbH

MONTHLY ARCHIVES


SIDELINES

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By Mail: Gerard Van der Leun | 6616-D Clark Road #176 | Paradise, CA 95969

Your Shower Is Lame, Your Dishwasher Doesn’t Work, and Your Clothes are Dirty

It’s not just about the showerhead.
The water pressure in our homes and apartments has been gradually getting worse for two decades, thanks to EPA mandates on state and local governments. This has meant that even with a good showerhead, the shower is not as good as it might be. It also means that less water is running through our pipes, causing lines to clog and homes to stink just slightly like the sewer. This problem is much more difficult to fix, especially because plumbers are forbidden by law from hacking your water pressure. | Foundation for Economic Education [HT: Never Yet Melted]


In 2016 the Western political system had a stroke.

The American political system is operating in the curious condition of being an impaired state.
It's not really thinking -- about China, Russia, Syria, Kurdistan. It's not really thinking about anything except half remembered slogans from 1968. Like a person afflicted by a stroke, it can't take a consistent view of external reality because it's regressing into atavisms by a loss of brain function. Impaired


Fake News. At the same time of the political putsch, the mainstream media outlets,

in particular the Washington Post, the New York Times, CNN, MSNBC, and the major networks, via broadcasts and social media, began an orchestrated campaign of defamation and delegitimization.
The crazier and more diverse the media mythologies, the better. Melania Trump was a former call girl and illegal alien. Ivanka Trump was peddling her business wares from the West Wing. Jared Kushner was a profiteering collusionist. Steve Bannon was a racist, Sebastian Gorka an unrepentant Nazi. Baron Trump was a spoiled, autistic child. The late elder Trump had run a racist campaign for mayor. And on and on. Resistance & Regime Change: Any Means Necessary – Lies, Leaks, Violence | National Review


Crime simply does not pay as well as politics or banking.

That may be the way to look at something like the Clinton Foundation and, coming soon, the Obama Foundation.
These are not explicitly criminal organizations, but they certainly play outside the spirit of the laws. Obama is out of office and prohibited from running again, but he still controls the Democratic party. The Clintons would be in charge, if not for the fact that the voters took their under boss out in the Tuesday Night Massacre, otherwise known as the presidential election. Even so, the Clinton Family is still a player. Late Phase Capitalism | The Z Blog


Bodymore, Murderville”

Most whites have become habituated to the reality of life in this part of the world.
Everyone, white and black, knows the reality on the street. The blacks with anything on the ball do exactly like the whites and that’s put distance between themselves and the black ghetto. That does not stop the Progressive maniacs from ranting about racism, but they do it from high up in the towers of their whites-only neighborhoods. As a result, no one hears them and so they can be ignored. The Killing Season | The Z Blog


New Blog Arriving Soon

Some have asked, "Gee whiz, Unca Gerard, where is that thar new blog you keeps a promisin'?"

I am hoping for sometime tonight. Hoping. We've been having some issues getting this winged dinosaur landed.


Drink Tea

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Drink tea, together with your friends; pay attention to the tea, and to your friends, and pay attention to your friends paying attention to the tea. Therein lies the meaning of life. The Essence of Peopling

We would love to cut a deal with the noble indigenous peoples across the Earth—

you can have your Navajo panties and aboriginal dot paintings and every last freaking burrito on the planet so long as you give us back our computers and cell phones and cars and indoor plumbing and electricity and air conditioners. Deal?

If people go their separate ways such a divorce would be an astonishing defeat for the Left.

As late as 2016 it was possible to imagine an America led to a "progressive" future by Hillary Clinton;
an EU guiding all of Europe to a similar destiny and the G20 taking the whole world to the same destination. Indeed everyone told they were fated to follow an Arc of History. Yet after Brexit, Trump and G-Zero it is no longer possible to visualize this outcome. A blue-red division would confirm the failure to create a "progressive" world. No conceivable rollback will ever put Humpty Dumpty together again. Opportunity


Trump, Julius Caesar, and killing tyrants

The Roman lower classes, with whom Caesar was popular, became enraged that a small group of aristocrats had sacrificed Caesar. -- neoneocon

Execute Trump? Nah, You First.

Draining the swamp means not only ejecting Trump from the presidency,
but also bringing himself and everyone assisting in his agenda up on charges of treason. They must be convicted (there is little room to doubt their guilt). And then — upon receiving guilty verdicts — they must all be executed under the law. Impeachment Is No Longer Enough; Donald Trump Must Face Justice | HuffPost [Retreived from GoogleCache after it was expunged from the Huffington Post]


A bee in her bonnet

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Thousands of bees took over a car in the UK and beekeepers are struggling to make them leave -
At first it wasn't clear why the bees chose the blue Nissan car and he and a colleague were trying to determine whether this was just a temporary stop or a new nesting site. But as the bees moved to the inside of the bonnet, filling every nook and cranny, things got more serious. "They're building a lot of wax in there now, and of course once they start doing that, they're reluctant to leave it, because it's the start of building a house. They put a lot of effort into producing the wax," Coulson told Hull Daily Mail. "I've got a feeling this might be their chosen permanent home."


[Bumped] "They send one of ours to the hospital, we send two of theirs to the morgue."

Baseball Shooter a Big Wake-Up Call for the Left | Roger L. SimonRobespierre is alive and well in 2017 USA.

This pathetic character in Alexandria is, now was, the left's ungoverned id. By any means necessary -- that's for sure. They will undoubtedly try to shove him under the rug as quickly as possible, just one more aberrant individual to be forgotten, just one obscure Bernie volunteer gone bad. Sanders did his best to separate himself within minutes of the revelation. Yes, it's undoubtedly true that this was just one rotten apple, but it's also true that only five years ago Bernie was recommending Venezuela -- now ground zero for starvation, kidnapping and murder -- as a path for us to emulate.



Greatest antitheft device when the thieves are millenials:

Man leads Jeffco deputies on low-speed chase in stolen flatbed truck after unable to get out of 1st gear The driver - later identified as 29-year-old Randy Dewayne Vert - refused to stop and continued driving south on Center Point Parkway, Christian said. Vert was apparently unfamiliar with the complexities of a modern manual transmission.

The natural impulse of a political system in institutional crisis is to dig in.

Too many institutions in the West remain decades after their birth, frozen in the moment of their creation.
NASA, the Southern Poverty Law Center, the university system and the United Nations rule us from the past. Public life has become a museum of memes from which nothing can escape without a mummy hand dragging the fugitive back into the darkened interior. It is perhaps no coincidence the two most popular leaders of the Western left, Jeremy Corbyn and Bernie Sanders, might credibly impersonate Boris Karloff. They are here to lead us back to 1968. Stuck


The Japanese. Nuked Too Much... or Trying to Get Their Mouths Around Fujiyama Volcano Plate

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We put Japan's most phallic-looking roast beef meal into our mouth at VolcanoKitchen | SoraNews24
Since we’d already become somewhat desensitized to the initially unsettling sensation of peeling strips of meat off the top of the shaft, we mercilessly crushed the egg, sending viscous, gooey liquid running down to the base of the meat rod.
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The power of the press is a figment of the imagination -- humbug --

Oscar Diggs behind the curtain projecting the image of Oz the Great and Powerful!
The Internet did not kill the power of the newspapers. It was suicide. And not just because most of them had Marxist editorials, editors, and reporters. Newspapers lost their sense of community -- and their credibility -- when the heirs to hometown publishers didn't want the paper, sold it to a chain for $1,000 per subscriber to a chain -- Gannett, Knight-Ridder, Thomson -- and moved on. Don Surber: Craigslist killed newspapers


When terrorists enter your children’s school and begin to execute them...

will the gun ban (you favored) in school that prevented abiding staff and teachers from saving your child, come to mind as a good idea?
If the answer to any or all of these and many more reasonable questions, is 'yes,' then you may be a delusional liberal, and likely a coward, and almost as big a threat to our nation as the terrorists who are at war with us." - Morgan K. Freeberg


"Happy birthday, Mr. President...."

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First truth which has been grounded into dust, must spring forth from the earth again.

At the present time . . .he who practices loving-kindness is esteemed and sought after, while he who champions the truth in word and in deed is persecuted and shunned. 
For men desire to base their affairs on everything except the one incorruptible truth which has been set down before us by God , and therefore these affairs have no permanent value . . . only when love and truth meet together, only when men come to understand that the highest act of loving-kindness is to bring men to know and practice the truth, only then will the marriage of love and truth produce that condition on earth in which everyone and everything will occupy the place which has been assigned to it by the will of God. Truth and Peace - Men Of The West


What happened to Nuclear Winter?

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As the media glare faded, its robust scenario appeared less persuasive;
John Maddox, editor of Nature, repeatedly criticized its claims; within a year, Stephen Schneider, one of the leading figures in the climate model, began to speak of "nuclear autumn." It just didn't have the same ring. A final media embarrassment came in 1991, when Carl Sagan predicted on Nightline that Kuwaiti oil fires would produce a nuclear winter effect, causing a "year without a summer," and endangering crops around the world. Sagan stressed this outcome was so likely that "it should affect the war plans." None of it happened. Raconteur Report: Aliens Cause Global Warming by Michael Crichton


If it's consensus, it isn't science. If it's science, it isn't consensus.

I regard consensus science as an extremely pernicious development that ought to be stopped cold in its tracks.
Historically, the claim of consensus has been the first refuge of scoundrels; it is a way to avoid debate by claiming that the matter is already settled. Consensus is the business of politics. Science, on the contrary, requires only one investigator who happens to be right, which means that he or she has results that are verifiable by reference to the real world. The greatest scientists in history are great precisely because they broke with the consensus. - - Woodpile Report


Joe Biden’s niece dodges jail after $100K credit card scam

She walks on a major felony? Of course she did. And who believes she'll keep her end of the deal? In her defense, we're assured she's "a very complicated girl who has a lot of feelings and a lot of issues." Oh ... okay. That explains everything. Hugs from all the little people. Woodpile Report

Why is English so weirdly different from other languages?

There is exactly one language on Earth whose present tense requires a special ending only in the third‑person singular.
I’m writing in it. I talk, you talk, he/she talk-s – why just that? The present‑tense verbs of a normal language have either no endings or a bunch of different ones (Spanish: hablo, hablas, habla). And try naming another language where you have to slip do into sentences to negate or question something. Do you find that difficult? | Aeon Essays



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