Best number from the finest pop concert film ever made, Stop Making Sense. [Full film is HERE.]
David Byrne: I've got a tape I want to play.
Trouble in transit, got through the roadblock,
We blended in with the crowd,
We got computers, we're tapping phone lines,
I know that ain't allowed.
We dress like students, we dress like housewives
Or in a suit and a tie.
I changed my hairstyle so many times now
Don't know what I look like!
You make me shiver. I feel so tender.
We make a pretty good team.
Don't get exhausted, I'll do some driving.
You ought to get you some sleep.
Burned all my notebooks, what good are notebooks?
They won't help me survive.
My chest is aching, burns like a furnace.
The burning keeps me alive.
Reading through George Orwell's essay of 1941, The Lion and the Unicorn, I came across the passage quoted below. Updating it was a simple matter of "Search and Replace" commands for a few words, deleting 8 and adding 12. Other than that, it reads like it was written yesterday on any one of 15, 365,763 conservative blogs.Continued...
"Illegitimi non carborundum!"
If you're getting the impression that we've got a lot more little bastards scampering about these days, you're right.Continued...
Continuing with our video weekend here at American Digest: I join with BigFurHat @ iOwnTheWorld.com -- She Got Robbed "How did Miss Arkansas NOT win last night's Miss America Pageant?"
I mean, just suppose, you actually -- somehow -- managed to marry this woman without knowing her "special talent...." Then, on your wedding night, she opens those two cases that were carried to the honeymoon suite with the rest of her baggage.... and it begins....
Wikileaks, something for everyone, a comedy tonight! SUBJECT: LIFESTYLES OF THE KAZAZHSTANI LEADERSHIP
7. (C) In 2007, President Nazarbayev's son-in-law, Timur Kulibayev, celebrated his 41st birthday in grand style. At a small venue in Almaty, he hosted a private concert with some of Russia's biggest pop-stars. The headliner, however, was Elton John, to whom he reportedly paid one million pounds for this one-time appearance. (Note: The British Ambassador relayed a slightly different story, with an unknown but obviously well-heeled friend arranging and paying for Sir Elton's gig. End Comment.) There have been separate reports that Nelly Furtado performed at the August 2007 birthday bash for Kulibayev's wife, Dinara Nazarbayeva. Kulibayev also appears willing to spend his fortune on others. According to Turkish diplomat Isik, when the Kempinski group recently built luxury villas in Bodrum, Turkey, Kulibayev bought up a number of them -- at a cost of 4-5 million dollars each -- and doled them out as gifts to friends and family.
Elton John. He's not just for Rush Limbaugh anymore!
Jerry Stiller of 'Seinfeld' visits the house in Astoria, Queens which was used for exterior shots of the Costanza residence.
How many times have we heard:
and wondered, "Okay, but just what did Inigo Montoya's father look like?"
Many, many times, I'll wager.
Wonder no longer, dear reader. Our crack research time here at American Digest has discovered during a dataspelunking trip into the Dark Web the only known photograph of Inigo Montoya's parents, Ted and Ethel.
And while Salinger lived the movie rights to Catcher in the Rye were among them. Here's an interesting Letter of Note: Holden Caulfield is unactable.Continued...
Created by JWM in Thinking Right: Working in the Green Slime
Go green. Lower quality, higher prices. Get less for your money. Cleaners that don't clean. Paint that doesn't stick to anything. Harsh, retina grating light bulbs full of toxic chemicals. Electric vehicles that ultimately use more energy than they save. Wind powered turbines that destroy acres of land for a minuscule few kilowatts of unreliable power. Equally unreliable solar grids more poisonous than a cyanide farm. And don't forget the endangered species. Outlaw surfing because it might annoy some life form somewhere under water. Forget about trout streams, and surf fishing. Shut down the water for California's agriculture to prevent a negligible risk to a tiny fish while billions of acre feet flow out to sea unused. Don't worry. All your produce is coming from Mexico, Chile, and Peru anyway. Forget about the energy it takes to move it those thousands of miles. In the mean time, tax Co2 emissions until your winter heating bills run higher than your mortgage- in Southern California. And lower emissions standards until the internal combustion engine is outlawed altogether. We'll all get around on high speed railways that don't go anywhere anyone wants to go. There's a great future in bicycles. Made in China.I gotta put that on a poster.
First seen atThe Diamond Age
You are not alone. You are just one of many millions of your fellow citizens who have asked, "How is THIS possible?"
Well, now it can be revealed....Continued...
We can't say we weren't told. An important essay by Dr, Bob:
"With the loss of the notion that man is a reflection of a divine Creator, and accountable to a higher Being or Law, the individual must compensate for his devaluation (for we are, after all, just cosmic accidents) by becoming ever more outlandish and outrageous in ways self-destructive, offensive to others, and hideous. Michael Jackson becomes our Dorian Gray — as the rotting necropolis of the spirit seeps through the grave clothes we have so carefully wrapped, having whitewashed the entombed soul with plastic surgery, slick production, Photoshop edits and high fashion. Our Ferragamos and facelifts, our tattoos and painted toes, are but weathered signposts on the rutted road to the expansive wasteland of our inner desolation."
Read the rest at Life in the Necropolis | The Doctor Is In
See you all on the flipped spin side.
HT: IronyCurtain @ iOwnTheWorld.com said we'd be a fan in 3:04. IronyCurtain was right.
Ah, the great orator unleashed at last! A man with a common, perhaps all too common, pattern of speech.
Of course, like most of Obama's bon-mots, it has a distinct flavor of ambiguity to it. To say some one is "wee-weed up" does not tell us the exact state of his or her Washington micturation situation. No, it leaves us in the dark with someone who may well be "wee-weed-up." A dangerous position, you will agree. One in which you would not want to feel a spill going up your leg unless you were Chris Matthews.
And so we have questions of the great and "Linconesque" communicator.
An ad? Five minutes? Yes. And worth every second.Continued...
This morning Sippican Cottage points this way:
by Philip Scott Johnson
Observing this long slow morphing of our male icons you can also discern the evolution of the country from Doug Fairbanks to George Clooney. You're going to wait a while for Samuel L. Jackson.
In order: Douglas Fairbanks Sr., Rudolph Valentino, Charlie Chaplin, James Cagney, Spencer Tracy, Fredric March, Errol Flynn, Fred Astaire, Clark Gable, Laurence Olivier, Gary Cooper, Humphrey Bogart, James Stewart, Tyrone Power, Cary Grant, Henry Fonda, Robert Mitchum, John Wayne, Kirk Douglas, Gene Kelly, Burt Lancaster, William Holden, Marlon Brando, James Dean, Rock Hudson, Montgomery Clift, Anthony Quinn, Gregory Peck, Richard Burton, Jack Lemmon, Sean Connery, Sidney Poitier, Charlton Heston, Steve McQueen, Peter O'Toole, Paul Newman, Clint Eastwood, Robert Redford, Dustin Hoffman, Roy Scheider, Warren Beatty, Dennis Hopper, Al Pacino, Jack Nicholson, Robert De Niro, Gene Hackman, Jon Voight, Harrison Ford, Kevin Kline, Kevin Costner, Michael Douglas, Christopher Walken, Mel Gibson, Sean Penn, John Travolta, Antonio Banderas, Tim Robbins, Samuel L. Jackson, Tom Hanks, Denzel Washington, Tom Cruise, Brad Pitt, Russell Crowe, Kevin Spacey, Will Smith, Jamie Foxx, Leonardo DiCaprio, Johnny Depp, Matt Damon, George Clooney
Why not "put a tax on thingy?"
Years back, when Europe was not further into deep space than Europa, there was a severe storm in the English Channel. A British tabloid summed it up with a head line that said, STORM CLOSES CHANNEL. CONTINENT CUT OFF. Now that the UK has decided to join Europe in their continent sized Jonestown ending, this map is closer to the sad reality of Europe. Created by ArtWerk on Flickr who says his inspiration was a BBC report in January headlined Europeans 'afraid of tomorrow.' They should be. Starting today.
[Click to enlarge, or click the link to see the flickr page with notes left by users.]
A lesson that we often fail to learn is the lesson of failure. Here's an inspiring reminder of the value of failure from Honda Motors, a company built on failure and built well.
The video, titled "Failure: The Secret to Success," provides insight into the thought process of company founder Soichiro Honda, and how he viewed failure as a means to winning. It also shows how much Honda, a successful car company by all accounts, has failed in the past and what it's learned from those missteps. Have you ever seen an orange 1996 Civic? Neither have we, and you'll know why when you watch the video after the jump. - AutoblogHT: The astute Ole Eichhorn
Daphne @ Jaded Haven urged me to spend 20 minutes with this video. I started, but after 5 minutes of his graphic description of gelding lambs with his teeth I had to click off. That was a mistake. This is 20 minutes of brilliance from a man who's been in the trenches with the people that actually make the things and do the work that makes the world revolve.
If you've spent 3 minutes gobstoppered at that tool and fool Corinne Brown in the House (see below) and come to despair, this will restore you to life.
Comics.com has made it's archives free and searchable. This includes over 21,000 Peanuts @ The Peanuts free online library
If we betray the people who love us, what's to stop us from betraying the country that makes us possible?
Have you ever betrayed your promise?
Did you ever break a vow?
Have you traded love for money,
And are you happy now?
Did you kiss him in the garden,
And then abandon him to fate?
Is your final sin forgiven,
Or is it far too late?
WHEN IT COMES TO DISCOVERING new ways to cheapen the human soul, the "professional intellectuals" of our society have cornered the market. So it was in 2006 when, timed carefully to cash in on the Easter holiday, the "serious" editors of National Geographic chose to release their gleanings from a sheaf of rags and call them "The Gospel of Judas."
Having risen through the echo chamber of "higher" education and survived the ruthless but quiet vetting process of their "profession," these editors knew full well that what they were putting out into the world was not a "gospel." They also knew that calling it a "gospel" would ensure greater attention and greater sales. Beyond that, the editors, secular cultists all, also got a quiet little tingle by having, in their minds, "stuck it" to the Christian church once again. As usual, such secularists love to stick it to Christianity. Addicts of auto-erotic spiritual asphyxiation, their onanistic pleasure in these deeds is only enhanced if they can be performed during the most holy days of the Christian calendar. Only then can maximum profit and pleasure be assured.
This dark thrill of denigration has the immediate benefit of pleasingly confirming them in their own Church of Zero, and the secondary benefit of being much, much safer than, say, sticking it to Islam, a faith that enforces its demands for respect with bombs and beheadings, and whose central message to all cowards is "Don't mess with Muhammad." The sad fact of our modern era is that if you denigrate Islam, you often have to bag up body parts and hose down the sidewalk, but when you denigrate Christianity the most you need to clean up after yourself is a warm washcloth.
Your gedankenexperiment for today is to ask yourself, regardless of your religious beliefs, if the editors of National Geographic, being given an ancient manuscript that "proved" the Koran was nothing more than the blatherings of some ergot-besotted Bedouin who had munched one too many hallucinogenic plants while hanging out in a cave near Mecca, would have published the same "proof" as loudly and as broadly? Would they have done so, or would they have issued a Press Release citing concerns for the "provenance" of the manuscript and their employees' safety? Regardless of your religious beliefs, you know the shameful answer.
But beyond these considerations, the publication of the "Gospel" of Judas has another, deeper and more lasting benefit to our neophytes of nihilism. It puts one of the final elements of their anti-morality play at center stage. It seeks to sanctify treason.
It was never a question of "if," but only a question of "when" our contemporary society would discover an avatar who would make treason acceptable. It only codifies the realities of their secular belief system. Treason against others or one's country has long been as common as adultery in this country. Like adultery the rate of treason is on the rise because, like adultery and similar forms of personal betrayal, it no longer has any consequences at all.
It is true that the federal crime of treason is not easily established and is rarely if ever charged. But the formal crime of treason is not what I am discussing here. Rather the more common, garden variety of treason as understood by plain people -- the rabid and unremitting hatred, expressed in word or deed, of the country that gives you the freedom express your hatred. It is the treason of the ingrate, the soul-dead, the politically perverted, and the bitter; it is, as Roger Kimball at The New Criterion discusses, the treason of the intellectuals and "the undoing of thought."
It's a fact of our self-centered contemporary existence that betrayal has become one of the common forces that shape our lives. For when our own desires ride us like a drunken demon lodged on our shoulders, betrayal is the first order of the day when others seek to thwart our desires, or even when others become a mere inconvenience to our wants and whims.
We've long permitted greater and greater levels of betrayal in our society. We've codified them as law, policy and custom as far as the wishes of the individual are concerned. It is no longer sophisticated or fashionable to speak of selfishness as betrayal. That word is so harsh when, after all, we are only speaking of "differing needs," aren't we. When the betrayal of others is glossed over with phrases such as "I needed to be me," or "I needed my space," or "I needed more money,"or "We were just on different paths," then the elevation of this disease of the soul from the betrayal of another into the larger realm of treason against all is only a question of degree.
The problem is that shame, a vestigial thing in many shrunken souls, persists, and shame must be driven out of the soul if the secular is to thrive. Both betrayal and treason are still weighted down by a lingering sense of shame within at the same time they are made safe from the onus of blame without. Both are permitted by our cults of personal freedom and "sensible" selfishness, but both are formed of dark matter and not easily expunged from one's soul no matter how reduced it may have become.
There was, perhaps, only one moment in history when humans "knew not what they did." In all other times we know, at the deepest level, exactly what we do when we betray another, or others, or ourselves, or our country. We know it clearly and so we bury the ugly deed deeply. Still it persists, remains and rots in the tomb of our souls. A wiser culture called this "sin" and sought to have it confessed and forgiven as meaningless in the shadow of the greatest sacrifice. Our therapeutic culture calls it "guilt" and seeks to palliate and expunge it so that we may live a guilt-free life regardless of our acts. More and more of us live in the latter culture and seek a life forever free from sin, from guilt, from the consequences of our betrayals. And yet this final freedom eludes us.
What is needed, in this secular age of self-intoxication, is a Saint who will remit our sins of betrayal; who will by his very existence sanctify treason. And who better fits this role than the man who betrayed the greatest love for the smallest change, Judas?
The worshipers of the Church of the Self need Judas today more than they need Christ, and they need Christ more than they can know. They need Him so much that they are compelled to reject Him utterly lest their shabby Church be seen as it is, a hovel made of mud and wattle, of empty objects, shabby dreams and promises broken. A statue of Judas would blend right into the niche above their television; a household god whose only requirement is an offering of silver, from time to time, or a shopping spree at the mall to secure his love and blessing; our "Saint Judas of Perpetual Extortion."
Betrayal is a common catechism in the Church of the Self. Hymns to Me are the hosannas it hurls at an empty heaven. The politics of such a church require as First Things a rejection of all things not of, by, and for the self. A religion or a country of the people, by the people, and for the people is high on the list of things to be abhorred since it requires an allegiance that is other than to the self. The Church of the Self effectively mandates treason, and we see it now manifested daily in the bright robes of "unstiffled dissent" which shroud an increasingly vicious anti-Americanism that has its roots, not in reasoned criticism, but in unreasoned hate. We hear the hate but what we have not been allowed to see is the treason behind it.
That is now "changed, changed utterly."
Now our traitors to God and Country have found a sheaf of rags that "prove" that the greatest treason was really "all good;" that Judas was really the greatest friend Jesus ever had and was, with a kiss, doing him the greatest favor ever done.
Treason, done with the kiss of "my personal freedom," proves that you do not really hate your country, you love it. You are, in the final analysis, your country's best friend. In these "new" old tales about Jesus we read that Judas betrayed the Son of God because Jesus told him to do it. Really? Or did his betrayal come, not from any request that may or may not have been made, but from humanity's persistant lust to sin freely and without even the thin penalty of remorse? Was this final treason done because this sin had been secretly blessed by God, or for the sheer dark thrill of asserting the self at the expense of life in the light?
"I betrayed my friend, because he gave me the freedom to do so. Feel my love for him."
"I betrayed my country because it gave me the freedom to do so. Feel my love for it."
Black is white. Hate is Love. Slavery is Freedom. Treason is Loyalty. That last phrase fits right in to the secular catechism, doesn't it? All it needs to become holy writ is an avatar, a solid historical personage with the power to turn darkness into light, lies into truth, and betrayal into something that was, in the final analysis, "all good."
Saint Judas, step right up to the Gates, ring that bell, and don your halo -- you the man.
As the 1930s drew to a close with global depressions, wars and rumors of war, there were a few people in charge of the future, the utopian future. And those people saw that maybe, just maybe, coal and oil might play themselves out and other sources of energy might have to be found. And in England it would seem that some creative editors and artists at Modern Wonder magazine looked up into the sky and decided it might be wise to catch the wind. They were publishing a magazine for boys and they didn't have to be right, they just had to be inspiring. It was an era in which publications for kids routinely tried to inspire them.
And they weren't small minded about it as these pictures will attest. They thought big... very BIG. And believed in the far future. Which was a good thing because, in September of 1938, much as it is now at the beginning of 2008, the immediate future was looking grim. Indeed, when this issue was published in September of 1938, War in Europe was only one year away.
Legos would have to wait until after the war, but most boys had Erector or Meccano Sets, so that became means by which these behemoths of the breeze would be built.
Here's the less than modest wind-farm plan of 1938:Continued...
At last! At long, long last! Okay, that's it. Western Civilization is a wrap. Over to you, Allah.
The terse and graceful Sippican Cottage on newspapers "I'm Not Interested. Period."
The New York Times et al., like to tell people that the internet is killing their business. Please. I can't be the only one that noticed that the front page is the editorial section now, and the editorial page has the quality and usefulness of unhinged rants. I'm not really in the market for either. And I'm too young to read the obituaries.
You will read the whole thing.
What are you still here?
Every so often the news, which is built around a lot of numbers, delivers a number that makes your happy world come to a screeching halt. A day ago that number was: One in 30 aborted foetuses lives.Continued...
In comments to another posting, AskMom asks
What pajamas are most suitable for our most or least favorite bloggers and other personalities? We stipulate of course that less than full cover-up is not in the spirit, and try to express through design, fabric and color the essence of the pajama wearer.I shall not divulge here the actual nature of my pajamas except to note that I own five pairs and for some odd reason I cannot find the bottoms to any of them at present. I think I'd best check out the dryer in the basement.
I can start by admitting that one of my own favorite pairs is a flannel sock monkey print in Williamsburg Blue. I see Ace in black silk with crossed swords embroidered all over. DailyKos of course wears Hello Kitty in noxious lime green to help him be in touch with his lickspittle gay-friendly little girl vulnerabilities. Neo, maybe some patriotic red white and blue plaid flannel, so impossible for a good liberal Jewish Girl and so right for her now.
I'm not brave enough to put forth any ideas about Gerard here on his own turf. Except to note that Winston Churchill wore a fabulous imperial burgundy wool robe of classic design and stately proportions, with hand turned corded edges and silk lining, and that if writing were pajamas......
IT'S THE FASHION SENSATION that's sweeping the nation....Continued...
"It's a hundred and six miles to the Oscars, we've got a full tank of gas, half a pack of cigarettes, it's dark, and we're wearing sunglasses." -- The Blues Brothers...
WHEN I MOVED TO SEATTLE I declined the opportunity to get cable TV. As a result I shall miss seeing our annual "Superbowl for Girls" (AKA: The Oscars) this evening. Still, in this besotted society just opting out of the Oscars doesn't mean you can opt out of being bludgeoned by them. The tsunami of BS surrounding this fornication festival of preening plutocrats grows higher and sweeps across our land with more devastation every year. Think of it as a Katrina of Cornpone.
Having proven itself to be politically impotent in the last two national elections, Hollywood still likes to strut its stuff when it comes to the realm where it is still pre-eminent -- pretending. And like all other industries that deal in the lower pleasures, they are very good at pushing their product. Although theyContinued...
ANTIPIXEL IS ONE OF MY FAVORITE PERSONAL PAGES. Coming from Japan, it seldom fails to provide a break of beauty in a sea of sites dedicated to the ugliness of the world.
Today's item "Cosplay girls in Harajuku" is a case in point as is the author's collection of photos from this Japanese sub-culture on Flickr: Harajuku Girls
ONE OF MY COCK-EYED OPTIMIST REALTOR FRIENDS, sends me the following listing: Corona Del Mar/ Newport Beach "Fixer-Upper" .
"The Portabello Estate, an art form complementing its natural environment. 8 bedrooms, 10 baths and 5 half baths. Beyond five star resort luxury, private, triple oceanfront lot in Corona del Mar and amenities beyond your wildest dreams. Locations of this uniqueness not available anywhere.�""
Price? A humble $75,000,000. Step right up and be the last in before the big quake and the nuking of San Diego. I'll be right behind you.
Lilkes, James, has a dream. No, not a Martin Luther King kind of dream.... Well, not exactly, but one that could lead to a Martin Luther King kind of dream.
I was a Burqa Quality Control inspector. I am not kidding. I had to go around in Cairo, knocking on doors, making sure everything was covered up. At one point I found myself in a grim small flat full of cooking odors, looking at the peeling paint, hearing the sounds of the streets -- cars, horns, crowds, beeps, barking dogs -- and feeling immense sadness for the person who had to live in this room, swathed in sheets. The most haunting part of the dream came at the end: all the apartment doors opened to a balcony, and when I’d left the floor, the balcony retracted so no one inside could leave.
A few year back the best answer I could come up with to "Why do they hate us?" was: "They hate us because we've got the groove, and because its is such a drag being them."
Still works for me.
THERE'S REALLY NO ESCAPE from the abiding stupidity of what currently passes for "Western Culture." We have, it would seem, crossed some ghastly Rubicon of sensibility in which many among us have no frame of reference by which to measure evil. Instead these stunted souls seem determined to wallow in the banal and the trivial, asserting that only these tiny concerns have any meaning. It is the zero-sum "philosophy" of moral relativism branded into actual lives. And the afflicted seem to enjoy running the red-hot iron of nullity into their brains over and over. An addiction to absolute zero that no drug other than Nihilism can sate.
Today's exhibit #1 of our decline in which our fellow Westerners seem to rejoice is the utterly fabricated hue and cry over some snapshots of a monster in his underwear.
FOUR DAYS AGO, I noticed a small news item that told me the virus had found another host. It is a clever virus, wise enough to mutate but still remain the same. It thrives in oppressive states and lately has found the means to thrive in an oppressive state that appears to be not oppressive but democratic. As I said, it is a clever virus.
"Struggling to remain at the cutting edge of anti-semitism, Canada is issuing, or, rather, re-issuing, politically correct passports for its Israel born Jewish citizens: Canadian Jews born in Jerusalem are having their passports recalled in order to erase the word "Israel" from beside the name of the Jewish State's capital."Not really the sort of thing you'd expect from one of the West's liberal democracy, is it. But the virus is very clever because the virus is very old.
Anti-Semitism is our most ancient spiritual virus. It is the oldest known virus that attacks, replicates within, and then destroys the human soul. The existence of Israel masks the existence of the virus in many infected souls, institutions, and, yes, liberal democracies by renaming itself as Anti-Zionism. This is especially clever since the renaming has survived the political movment it refers to. Through the renaming of this ancient disease as a political problem, many people now become infected through their friends, families, at their schools, from their community, church, or nation, or from exchanging infected fantasies with infected ideologues. (This is especially evident in the increasing support given to the virus by the Left here and abroad.) By changing the name of the disease it has become possible for many to deny that they have contracted the virus. This facilitates the current outbreak. Yes, it is a clever virus and this eerie shape-shifting is one of its oldest methods of perpetuating itself. A contemporary Christian might say it is one of the oldest "Faces of the Enemy." It is what it is.
The origin of the virus is unknown, but many suspect the area to be Bablyon and Sumur with an early leap across borders into Egypt. It was later transmitted through not-so-casual contact to much of the world by traders out of Northern Africa and the Roman Empire.
During the period following the fall of Rome, the virus found traction in early Christianity as a common carrier. In this host it thrived, and was able to survive and spread for many centuries. Of late, many parts of Christianity, now that it has become fragmented, have rejected the virus and those who host it, but strains of the virus can still be found at the center of many subsets of the Christian faith today.
Islam, of course, is the not-that-new major religion to not only host the virus, but to celebrate being infected with it, and to actively take measures to make sure that, within the body of Islam, the virus can thrive and expand and continue its contamination of souls almost unchecked. What to do about this new and virulent strain of the virus is something that is now consuming a great deal of the attention and treasure of Western Civilization.
In our recent past, treatment of the virus, once it had taken over whole nations, was first sought through the application of "the talking cure." This only fed it and let it grow stronger and more virulent. Ultimately, measures were taken similar to those that once dealt with the Black Plague. The cure required a large sacrifice in human life across the face of the Earth and dealt in the application of large amounts of steel and fire on the sites of the infection.
Our more enlightened age is still experimenting with a regimen that mixes "the talking cure" with a small application of highly targeted micro-surgery on some of the infected parts of Islam. It is hoped that this less Draconian cure will work; that it will not be necessary to use radiation treatments. To date, the prognosis seems positive if guarded. A virus-induced flare-up of any significant size within the United States would be a setback and the radiation option would be seriously and immediately considered. Would there be such a flare up? Recent history is not comforting.
Flare-ups of the virus have been common across civilization throughout the last 2 millennia, but an overwhelming series of eruptions in centered in Germany but infecting most contiguous nations and then seething in the lands controlled by the USSR, required a global intervention before the conflagration was deemed to be put out. For a time, like smallpox, the virus was declared, if not extinct, certainly on the wane.
This, of course was an illusion, since like root fires, the virus only smoldered underground in the human and social hosts for a few decades before flaring up once again in the petrified social forests of the Middle East. It short order the flare-ups were repeated, more politely, in the centers of a now Unified Europe. Given the new, improved vectors of communication and air travel, the virus leaped oceans quite nimbly and began its work anew across the face of the planet. As always, the infection started quietly -- a nod, a wink, a small editorial of the most reasoned sort that no reasonable person could possibly object to -- but it came to the same thing in the end. It became, again, acceptable. The virus needs assent to enter the host. Any assent, no matter how small, will do.
With the advent of the "Palestinian cause" becoming chic in Western, European, and Liberal circles -- fed at first by Socialist Progressive romanticism in the late 1960s and early 1970s -- being infected by virus has once more become acceptable to exhibit socially in certain ways. Indeed, in many circles and societies, having the virus has lately become a highly prized fashion accessory to popular academic, media, and state ideologies. More clever still is one of the most ancient disguises of the virus made new again. This disguise is the one where the virus tells you it does not exist and has never existed. Cyclon-B was for delousing and those ovens were only for baking bread.
The virus, because it is an ancient and clever virus, can lie dormant for years, and like HIV, can mutate around a lot of therapies designed to destroy it.
As noted above, in the recent past, it has been shown that large doses of steel and fire can eradicate the virus in some populations, but only for a time. A cure is promised, but seems to be always delayed. The only measures that work are, at best, prophylactic. Another strategy is strict monitoring to prevent the spread of the virus. This seemed to be holding the virus at bay for decades. Lately, however, this method has broken down. The virus, like terrorism, has recently been able to piggy-back on the world-circling data-stream, and infect individuals and groups previously deemed immune.
But there is, as history demonstrates, no immunity to be had from the virus. The only strategy that seems to work is abstinence. This is accomplished by a rigorous rejection of all attempts by the virus to establish itself within an individual host. Constant monitoring and the suppression through education or other means of outbreaks in groups or ideologies or nations is also required. There can be no assent. There can be no reasonable reason. There can be no forgetting.
Since the virus has been present in human hosts for well over 4,000 years, hopes for eradication in our lifetime are slim. Hopes for eradication in the future are better in civilized countries if, and only if, members of the generations now living and infected with the virus become dedicated to not transmitting to future generations. The virus is found nowhere else in nature except within the human host. If it is denied transmission to the young, the virus, clever though it may be, can be eliminated from the world in three generations. But only if.
A pseudo-philosophical commitment to evade partisanship turns at this level into a partisanship of its own. And not the least of the paradoxes we find in examining journalism is that this most Western of all practices should embrace so anti-Western a stance. The logical problem journalists face parallels that of liberals who embrace all lawful forms of freedom, only to be told that this apparent openness is itself a form of concealed partisanship. Liberalism and journalism, we might say, are virtually Siamese twins among the commitments of our civilization, and their fates are bound up together.
I've long held a poor opinion of Geraldo Rivera, but this brief video redeems him in my eyes.
See if you don't agree. Watch Geraldo Rivera reports on a civilian casualty.
This is the result of the insurgent action.
A young woman, a civilian, ...just torn to pieces by an insurgent shell.
What's the point of this insurgency?
What are they fighting for?
To kill an innocent woman who wants to go vote?
What's the point of this?
What are these "heroes" after?
This makes any civilized person absolutely sick.
This... God rest her soul... this is deplorable.
Courtesy of: johnny dollar's place
[HT: Trey Jackson / Olbermann Watch ]
"This game was invented because it seems like when you know someone well enough, 75-80% of any Rock-Paper-Scissors games you play with that person end up in a tie. " -- Whipped up by Sam Kass
Luke Jones' Periodic Table of the Elements.
Of the Blogsphere, that is.
And the second most brilliant set is Here.
Put them together and it is all ye know of the Web and all ye need to know.
JAMES LILEKS, EAT YOUR SHORTS! They say you can get anything on Ebay, but if that's true I would have preferred one with a dust jacket. "Oh, well, you can't have everything. Where would you keep it?"
The Curmudgeon and his "Snapper"
WHAT MAKES AMERICA GREAT? Aside from the big things which we argue about endlessly, it strikes me the country's greatness is more often seen in the aggregate of little things. We each have our list, but for Francis W. Porretto today it seems to be cup holders on lawn tractors. He's got a point.
Your Curmudgeon recently found himself "in the chips" sufficiently to indulge in a new lawn tractor. His old Snapper tractor isn't that old -- nine years -- but it's been losing power, which has made cutting his acre of grass more irritating than it ought to be, especially in the spring fast-growth season. Also, it vibrates enough that an hour on it leaves unpleasant after-effects on your Curmudgeon's balance, hearing, vision and grip. So a few weeks ago, he sallied forth and purchased a new unit: a 22 horsepower Cub Cadet 1022, with a 46 inch mower deck.If you think this is silly and frivolous, you have never had a large lawn on your To Do list.
Cub has been spoken of as the Cadillac of consumer grade lawn tractors. After a couple of weeks of using this one, it's easy to see why. The frame absorbs nearly all the vibration produced by the engine, transmission and mower blades. The overall design is elegant; everything is easily accessible, both for use and for maintenance. The 22 horsepower Briggs & Stratton engine is equal to any need a noncommercial user might face. The wide deck has reduced the cutting time here at the Fortress of Crankitude from an hour and a half to about forty-five minutes. Last but not least, the lawn looks better, which might just be about the sharpness of new blades, though your Curmudgeon thinks not.
But let us not pass over the feature that has the C. S. O. hypnotized: the cup holder.
Cars have had cup holders for half of forever, but lawn tractors? Nevertheless. Cub left a large circular dimple in a convenient place, so that the homeowner can bring his Mai Tai or Pina Colada with him on his journey across his lawn. Not that your Curmudgeon would ever do such a thing. Never drink and mow: you might hit a rock and spill your drink!
AN EXCERPT FROM 1995's EVANGELIUM VITAE (The Gospel of Life) ADDRESSED BY THE SUPREME PONTIFF POPE JOHN PAUL II TO ALL THE BISHOPS, PRIESTS, AND DEACONS, MEN AND WOMEN, RELIGIOUS LAY FAITHFUL, AND ALL PEOPLE OF GOOD WILL ON THE VALUE AND INVIOLABILITY OF HUMAN LIFE
"[A] new cultural climate is developing and taking hold, which gives crimes against life a new and—if possible—even more sinister character, giving rise to further grave concern: broad sectors of public opinion justify certain crimes against life in the name of the rights of individual freedom, and on this basis they claim not only exemption from punishment but even authorization by the State, so that these things can be done with total freedom and indeed with the free assistance of health-care systems.
"All this is causing a profound change in the way in which life and relationships between people are considered. The fact that legislation in many countries, perhaps even departing from basic principles of their Constitutions, has determined not to punish these practices against life, and even to make them altogether legal, is both a disturbing symptom and a significant cause of grave moral decline.
"Choices once unanimously considered criminal and rejected by the common moral sense are gradually becoming socially acceptable.
"Even certain sectors of the medical profession, which by its calling is directed to the defence and care of human life, are increasingly willing to carry out these acts against the person.
"In this way the very nature of the medical profession is distorted and contradicted, and the dignity of those who practise it is degraded.
"In such a cultural and legislative situation, the serious demographic, social and family problems which weigh upon many of the world's peoples and which require responsible and effective attention from national and international bodies, are left open to false and deceptive solutions, opposed to the truth and the good of persons and nations.
"The end result of this is tragic: not only is the fact of the destruction of so many human lives still to be born or in their final stage extremely grave and disturbing, but no less grave and disturbing is the fact that conscience itself, darkened as it were by such widespread conditioning, is finding it increasingly difficult to distinguish between good and evil in what concerns the basic value of human life.
From March 7, 2005: The Passion of the Pope @ AMERICAN DIGEST
BANANAS NATURALLY DIVIDE INTO 3 PERFECT WEDGES!
Yes, another one of my simple pleasures (See below) can be found via this educational video at The Sneeze.
Watch it and learn something new about bananas.