Comments or suggestions: Gerard Van der Leun


The Constant Murmur from the Mind


“White clouds encircle the mountain waist like a sash,
Stone steps mount high into the void where the narrow path leads far.
Alone, leaning on my rustic staff I gaze idly into the distance.
My longing for the notes of a flute is answered in the murmurings of the gorge.”

-- Shen Zhou, Poet on a Mountain c. 1500. Painting and poem by Shen Zhou


In The Cascades

Above the trail to the summit
Clouds climb the mountains --
Hands through water, fingers of rain,
Smoke in dreams, as steps accumulate,
Placing first one foot, then the other,
Pacing out the rip-rap of the years.

Below the snow ghosts swirl behind
Drifts of leaf-shimmer, billowed veils
Of wind whose whispers echo back
Across the distant silence singing
To the tempo of the breath:
"Once only, once only, only once."

Above the stream in the ravine.
Watched by sentinels of stone, of fir,
Of trees so tall their tops dissolve
Into the breath of the mountains.
Ebony glints of ravens' wings
Banking into green on darker green.

Below it's all been settled long ago.
Only on foot, step by step,
Can you climb up, beyond,
And out of time -- except for the weight
You carry on your back; gossamer
Thread spinning down into the Labyrinth.

At the crest, looking back, looking below,
Herds of mule deer graze beneath pylons
Where a survey crew measures the steel river,
For a grid of concrete and copper cables
Connecting the Matrix coiled on the coast.
Above, the mountains' shoulders shatter the rain.

Posted by gerardvanderleun at Dec 4, 2016 1:55 AM |  Comments (5)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Surf's Up [New Video]

Jed Gradisen, 13, is lucky to escape with his life after a huge DOLPHIN takes a flying leap and lands on top of him as he catches a wave, spearing its nose through his board Gradisen, 13, was surfing near the WA town of Kalbarri. A dolphin launched itself out of the water and landed on his surfboard. The huge mammal speared its nose clean through his board. Gradisen had just enough time to jump clear before impact

== | Daily Mail Online

Posted by gerardvanderleun at Sep 24, 2016 6:47 PM |  Comments (2)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Bocca della Verità: The Mouth of Truth


Long before the modern lie detector and its harmlessly jittering graphs and wires were invented, the superstitious and untruthful faced a much more severe fate between the jaws of the Bocca della Verità, or Mouth of Fate, an ancient carving which is said to bite the hands off of liars.....

While the origin is up for debate the one unifying legend surrounding the stone carving is that if one were to stick their hand inside the disc's mouth and tell a lie, the rocky maw would bite the offending hand off. This belief seems to have originated during the Middle Ages when the disc was supposedly used during trials having the accused put their hand in the slot and if found to be untruthful a hidden axeman would lop off the appendage. While this use seems to be apocryphal, the superstition persists to this day. The Mouth of Truth, which now rests outside the doors of the Santa Maria in Cosmedin church, has been used as a whimsical lie detector in a number of movies and video games, most famously in the 1953 romance, Roman Holiday, in which the carving was a major plot device.
Via Atlas Obscura


Posted by gerardvanderleun at Jan 16, 2015 6:36 PM |  Comments (2)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Improving the Program

"I went on to test the program in every way I could devise. I strained it to expose its weaknesses. I ran it for high-mass stars and low-mass stars, for stars born exceedingly hot and those born relatively cold. I ran it assuming the superfluid currents beneath the crust to be absent--not because I wanted to know the answer, but because I had developed an intuitive feel for the answer in this particular case. Finally I got a run in which the computer showed the pulsar's temperature to be less than absolute zero. I had found an error. I chased down the error and fixed it. Now I had improved the program to the point where it would not run at all."

--George Greenstein, Frozen Star: Of Pulsars, Black Holes and the Fate of Stars

Posted by Vanderleun at Nov 14, 2013 9:46 AM |  Comments (3)  | QuickLink: Permalink
The Most Beautiful Wisteria Tree in the World


"In the Ashikaga Flower Park in Tochigi, Japan sits an incredibly gorgeous wisteria tree that's often referred to as the most beautiful in the whole world.

The largest and oldest in Japan, the tree is the main attraction at the flower park as visitors flock to see it in full bloom. Dating back to approximately 1870, the 143-year-old tree has branches that are supported by beams, which creates a a stunning flower umbrella." -- - My Modern Metropolis
For even more views of Ashikaga Flower Park SEE HERE Photos: Ralph Mirebs

Posted by gerardvanderleun at Apr 14, 2013 10:31 PM |  Comments (2)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Yes, You Can

Yet another quote for my ever expanding file marked, "Pay Attention to Peggy Noonan:"
You can get so well educated in America that your thoughts become detached from common sense. You can get so complicated in your thinking that the obvious isn't real to you anymore. -- OpinionJournal - Peggy Noonan

Posted by Vanderleun at Dec 16, 2004 3:48 PM | QuickLink: Permalink
Why's That?
Have you ever noticed that "Why?" is qualitatively different from all the other interrogatives? ("What?", "When?", "Where?", "Who?", and "How?") Of all of them, only Why calls for interpretation of human opinion. All the others call only for fact. -- Ole Eichhorn @ Critical Section

Posted by Vanderleun at Dec 15, 2004 10:32 PM |  Comments (2)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Most Overbearing Political/Literary Allusion of the Day


"....yes when I put the sign on my lawn like the gender studies professors used or shall I wear a Kedwards Button yes and how he kissed but did not kiss me under the Moorish wall and I thought well as well him as another...."

Posted by Vanderleun at Oct 13, 2004 7:39 AM |  Comments (3)  | QuickLink: Permalink
The Unending Mysteries of the Orient

YOU THERE! Yes, you!

You might think that in your happy little world you can at least control and hold onto your pointing and clicking CURSOR, right?

Well, you are DEAD WRONG!

Posted by Vanderleun at Oct 4, 2004 9:45 PM |  Comments (2)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Okay, Break's Over...

Back in the Jar!


Posted by Vanderleun at Aug 31, 2004 11:43 AM |  Comments (4)  | QuickLink: Permalink
The Democratic Convention, Condensed

"It is the voice of a single hatred in the absence of a single idea."

Belmont Club
Posted by Vanderleun at Jul 29, 2004 8:26 AM |  Comments (2)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Noted While Drinking

ONE COCKTAIL puts you into low orbit around the Planet Me. Two cocktails degrades that orbit. Three... check for chunks in your wings, you've become the Columbia.

Posted by Vanderleun at Jun 30, 2004 4:52 AM |  Comments (7)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Questions Containing Their Own Answers

"Have you already been subjugated by the ideal post-modern marriage of aesthetic ugliness and materialist idolatry?"

-- From Coffeehouse at the End-Of-Days: McMansion Invasion

Posted by Vanderleun at May 28, 2004 6:08 PM | QuickLink: Permalink
Questions Containing Their Own Answers

"Have you already been subjugated by the ideal post-modern marriage of aesthetic ugliness and materialist idolatry?"

-- From Coffeehouse at the End-Of-Days: McMansion Invasion

Posted by Vanderleun at May 28, 2004 6:08 PM | QuickLink: Permalink
"Okay, now everybody remember where we parked."

Posted by Vanderleun at May 25, 2004 11:00 AM | QuickLink: Permalink
National Media Feed In A Nutshell


Abu Ghraib, Abu Ghraib, Abu Ghraib, Abu Ghraib, Abu Ghraib, Abu Ghraib, Body Count, Abu Ghraib, Abu Ghraib, Abu Ghraib, Abu Ghraib, Abu Ghraib, Abu Ghraib, Abu Ghraib, Abu Ghraib, 9-11 Hearings, Abu Ghraib, Abu Ghraib, Abu Ghraib, Abu Ghraib, Abu Ghraib, Abu Ghraib, Body Count, Terrorist Explosion, Abu Ghraib, Abu Ghraib, Abu Ghraib, Abu Ghraib, Abu Ghraib, Abu Ghraib, Abu Ghraib, Abu Ghraib,...
Via: Demosophia: The Daily Depress

Posted by Vanderleun at May 20, 2004 2:44 PM | QuickLink: Permalink
Unclear Destinations


Posted by Vanderleun at May 20, 2004 9:39 AM | QuickLink: Permalink
"A Picture Is Worth 100 Gallons"


Seen at: Derek's Rantings and Musings

Posted by Vanderleun at May 19, 2004 9:14 AM | QuickLink: Permalink
Electron Crimes

PhysicsWeb - SLAC sees parity violation in electrons

Physicists in the US have observed parity violation in collisions between electrons for the first time.

We think the best thing to do is sobriety tests all around and then let them off with a warning.

Posted by Vanderleun at May 15, 2004 2:49 PM | QuickLink: Permalink

ZEFRANK KNOWS the kind of person you're looking for and gives you what you've always Wanted . Just click when you see someone you want.

Posted by Vanderleun at May 3, 2004 9:27 AM | QuickLink: Permalink
What's Just-So-Wrong With This Picture?

It's a Japanese thing. You wouldn't understand.

Posted by Vanderleun at Apr 14, 2004 10:16 PM | QuickLink: Permalink
Koan of the Day

"Q: Why does Donald Duck wear a towel when getting out of the shower when he usually doesn't even wear pants?"

-- Disney Online Guest Services

Posted by Vanderleun at Mar 30, 2004 5:32 PM | QuickLink: Permalink
NASA Hubble Policy Noted in Heavens

Posted by Vanderleun at Mar 13, 2004 12:56 AM | QuickLink: Permalink
A Metaphor for... for...

... for The Meaning of Life?

Posted by Vanderleun at Feb 3, 2004 7:29 PM | QuickLink: Permalink
Someone Yoda Statue Steal

"Mmm. Lost a statue, Master Lucas-Wan has. How embarrassing. How embarrassing. "

PASADENA, Calif. (AP) - Someone lifted a 170-pound bronze statue of Yoda, the "Star Wars" Jedi master.

The theft from a flatbed truck was reported to police last weekend and artist Lawrence Noble, 55, of Crestline has offered a $1,000 reward for its return. The limited-edition bronze is worth up to $20,000.

"It's a real high-end collectible," Noble said.

Police spokeswoman Janet Pope said, "We are treating this as a burglary and we'd appreciate any information the public might have."

"Hard to see, the dark side is. Clear your mind must be, Pope, if you are to discover the real villains behind this plot. "

-- Adios Yoda

Posted by Vanderleun at Jan 29, 2004 6:36 AM | QuickLink: Permalink
The Wastelands

Click for larger image

Posted by Vanderleun at Jan 23, 2004 3:20 PM | QuickLink: Permalink
Mosque Shortage Looms in Iran
The 6.3-Richter earthquake in Bam city in southeastern Iran has flattened five tombs belonging to religious figures and 38 mosques. He added that the tragic quake has only spared one mosque and one Imamzadeh from damage.
-- Via Rantburg
Posted by Vanderleun at Jan 23, 2004 10:02 AM | QuickLink: Permalink
The Stillness

Posted by Vanderleun at Dec 22, 2003 2:30 PM | QuickLink: Permalink
Facts Found in Poems

"In 1951, as Henrietta Lacks was dying of cancer in a Maryland hospital, one astute physician there removed a pea-sized sample of her tumor to see if its cells would grow in a test tube -- something never achieved before -- and these became the very first human cells to thrive and multiply outside of the body. Now called HeLa cells, today there are so many that they outweigh what would have been Henrietta Lacks's living body 400 times, and have been used around the world in studies on polio, leukemia, protein synthesis, the effects of nuclear radiation, genetic control mechanisms, and more."
-- From Albert Goldbarth's "Budget Travel through the Universe" at Poetry Daily

Posted by Vanderleun at Dec 22, 2003 7:18 AM |  Comments (1)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Words Worth

"So far, bad philosophy has killed a lot more people than biotechnology. Perhaps we should regulate it. . . ." -- Glenn Reynolds

Posted by Vanderleun at Dec 18, 2003 10:12 AM | QuickLink: Permalink
Fish. Barrel. Bang!
"The capture of Saddam has not made America safer."....

Give Dean this: He is, in a certain perverse way, eloquent. It's not easy to cram so much idiocy, mendacity and arrogance into nine little words, but he did it.

-- James Taranto

Posted by Vanderleun at Dec 16, 2003 5:53 PM |  Comments (1)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Great Moments in Campaign Appearences

Democratic presidential hopeful Rep. Dick Gephardt, D-Mo.,
casts a shadow on the flag as he is introduced to speak at
a rally Monday, Dec. 1, 2003, at the police station in Cedar
Rapids, Iowa.

Okay, what's Gephardt got that Dean hasn't?

Via: Yahoo! News

Posted by Vanderleun at Dec 6, 2003 8:23 AM | QuickLink: Permalink
Most Horrifying Headline of the Month So Far

U.N. Summit to Focus on Internet

--Washington Post
Posted by Vanderleun at Dec 5, 2003 5:30 PM |  Comments (13)  | QuickLink: Permalink
As opposed, say, to someone just normally repellant...

"All Dean's "he gets it!" cheerleaders are gonna have some crow to digest if somebody really repellant uses all these tools to get elected in the future."

From: Why Dean matters

Posted by Vanderleun at Nov 21, 2003 12:47 PM |  Comments (11)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Great Moments in Explosives Training

Posted by Vanderleun at Nov 19, 2003 5:49 PM |  Comments (20)  | QuickLink: Permalink
Minim of the Moment


He who would achieve great things must first be born.

Posted by Vanderleun at Nov 13, 2003 8:30 AM |  Comments (10)  | QuickLink: Permalink

Posted by Vanderleun at Nov 2, 2003 11:04 PM | QuickLink: Permalink
First Photograph of Lightning

by William Jennings
American (b. England, 1860-1946)
ca. 1885 gelatin silver print
Click to enlarge

From: George Eastman House -- A Matter of Fact

Posted by Vanderleun at Oct 28, 2003 10:01 AM | QuickLink: Permalink
Words to Live By`

Posted by Vanderleun at Oct 24, 2003 3:16 PM | QuickLink: Permalink
And the Problem with RSS Excerpts Is Tha...

A recent RSS item from Memepool quoted in full:

Some (e.g. Ted Nugent) advocate hunting for food. Others cite the necessity of culling the her... [Memepool]

Posted by Vanderleun at Oct 20, 2003 9:35 PM | QuickLink: Permalink
Email of the Day So Far

As received...

From: "S. V."
Date: Mon Oct 13, 2003 8:20:11 AM US/Pacific
To: "G. V."
Subject: FW: Jan, The 2004 Trailer Life Directory is here

This is the kind of header that tells you your life is moving in the right direction.

Posted by Vanderleun at Oct 13, 2003 9:32 AM | QuickLink: Permalink
Words to Live By

"The limitless euphoria of the beginning belongs to the past,"

-- Arnoud de Kemp, on Bubble Bursts for E-Books

Posted by Vanderleun at Oct 11, 2003 10:00 PM | QuickLink: Permalink
The Packaging of Ideas

"I for one believe that if you give people a thorough
understanding of what confronts them and the basic causes
that produce it, they'll create their own program, and when
the people create a program, you get action."
- Malcolm X

From gillen

Posted by Vanderleun at Oct 11, 2003 6:02 PM | QuickLink: Permalink
Minim of the Day

You'll get further with a kind word and a gun
than with a kind word alone.

From Tom Weller's MINIMS

Posted by Vanderleun at Oct 7, 2003 12:11 PM | QuickLink: Permalink
Military Maxims

"Aim towards the Enemy."
— Instructions printed on a US Rocket Launcher

"When the pin is pulled, Mr. Grenade is not our friend.
— U.S. Marine Corps

"Bombing from B-52's is very, very accurate. The bombs are guaranteed to always hit the ground."
— U.S.A.F. Ammo Troop

If the enemy is in range, so are you."
— Infantry Journal

"A slipping gear could let your M203 grenade launcher fire when you least expect it. That would make you quite unpopular in what's left of your unit."
— Army's magazine of preventive maintenance

"It is generally inadvisable to eject directly over the area you just bombed."
— U.S. Air Force Manual

"Try to look unimportant; they may be low on ammo."
— Infantry Journal

"Tracers work both ways."
— U.S. Army Ordnance

"Five-second fuses only last three seconds."
— Infantry Journal

"Bravery is being the only one who knows you're afraid."
— David Hackworth

"If your attack is going too well, you're walking into an ambush."
— Infantry Journal

"No combat-ready unit has ever passed inspection."
— Joe Gay

"Any ship can be a minesweeper... once."
— Anon

"Never tell the Platoon Sergeant you have nothing to do."
— Unknown Marine Recruit

"Don't draw fire; it irritates the people around you."
— Your Buddies

"If you see a bomb technician running, try to keep up with him."
— U.S.A.F. Ammo

Posted by Vanderleun at Oct 6, 2003 9:10 AM | QuickLink: Permalink
Dubious Headline of the Day

Scientific American: Hubble Glimpses New Moons around Uranus


Posted by Van der Leun at Oct 2, 2003 12:01 PM | QuickLink: Permalink
World Cuisine Made Simple

"Tomatoes and oregano make it Italian; wine and tarragon make it French. Sour cream makes it Russian; lemon and cinnamon make it Greek. Soy sauce makes it Chinese; garlic makes it good."

--Alice May Brock

Posted by Van der Leun at Sep 19, 2003 12:46 PM | QuickLink: Permalink
Here's Looking At You Kid

Mona to the left of me, Mona to the right of me,
Mona staring straight at me. Oh my.

From the "Almost Infinite Clip File with No Originating Links," a new way of looking at the Mona Lisa -- or say, rather, a new way that she looks at you.

Click on image for full effect.

Posted by Van der Leun at Sep 14, 2003 4:53 PM | QuickLink: Permalink
Minim for Monday


Today is the first day of the rest of your week.

From Tom Weller's MINIMS

Posted by Vanderleun at Sep 1, 2003 10:03 AM | QuickLink: Permalink
Minim of the Day

A man with a cabbage for a head
will never want for nourishment.

-- Minims by Tom Weller

Posted by Van der Leun at Aug 29, 2003 10:29 AM | QuickLink: Permalink
You know you are in California if...

You make over $250,000 a year and still can't afford a house.

You work 10 miles away, and it takes you an hour to drive there.

Your child's third grade teacher has purple hair, a nose ring, and is named Breeze.

It's sprinkling outside, so you leave for work an hour early to avoid all the weather-related accidents.

You can't remember ... is pot legal?

You've been to a baby shower for an infant who has two mothers and a sperm donor.

You have a very strong opinion about where your coffee beans are grown, and can taste the difference between Sumatran and Ethiopian.

You know which restaurant serves the freshest arugula.

You can't remember ... is pot legal?

A really great parking space can move you to tears.

The guy in line at Starbucks, wearing the baseball cap, sunglasses, and looks like George Clooney, IS George Clooney.

Your car insurance costs as much as your house payment.

Your hairdresser is straight, your plumber is gay, and your Mary Kay rep is in drag.

It's sprinkling out, and there's a report on every news channel about "THE STORM!"

Hey ... is pot legal?

Over 85% of the cities, towns, and streets start with San, Los, El, La, Santa, De La, or De Los.

Two overcast days in a row drive you mad.

A family of four owns six vehicles, 5 cell phones, 4 tv sets and 5 computers.

Everyone who lives here knows that hurricanes, tornadoes, floods and snowstorms are way worse than earthquakes, which are, after all, over almost as soon as you realize what's happening.

Even if the store is across the street, you drive there.

Yeah, you're sure...? pot is legal.

And finally, a question:

Q. How many Californians does it take to screw in a light bulb?
A. None. Californians cannot afford to turn on the lights.

Source: The Braden Files

Posted by Vanderleun at Aug 21, 2003 1:19 PM | QuickLink: Permalink
Bloomberg in a Nutshell

The Man Who Thinks He's the Mayor

Bloomberg of New York by LILEKS (James) in less than 15 words:

Bloomberg: "...that hapless nanny Mayor. He's about as inspirational and reassuring as a stale blintz. "

Posted by Vanderleun at Aug 15, 2003 7:40 AM | QuickLink: Permalink
Rumour Speaks

Induction. Henry the Fourth, Part II.

EnterRUMOUR, painted full of tongues
"The posts come tiring on,
And not a man of them brings other news
Than they have learn'd of me: from Rumour's tongues
They bring smooth comforts false, worse than true wrongs."

Posted by Vanderleun at Aug 12, 2003 7:05 PM | QuickLink: Permalink
Gigli: The Final Insult
US theatre owners are contractually obligated to play Gigli for what may be the longest two weeks of their exhibiting lives.

From:Sony gives Gigli the flick

Posted by Vanderleun at Aug 5, 2003 7:39 PM | QuickLink: Permalink
Beach Sign for Illiterates

Photo by Sheryl Van der Leun

Posted by Vanderleun at Aug 4, 2003 6:29 AM | QuickLink: Permalink

Imagine ghosts, gods and devils.
Imagine hells and heavens, cities floating in the sky and cities sunken in the sea
Unicorns and centaurs. Witches, warlocks, jinns and banshees.
Angels and harpies. Charms and incantations. Elementals, farmiliars, demons.

Easy to imagine all of those things: mankind has been imagining them for thousands of years.

Imagine spaceships and the future.
Easy to imagine; the future is really coming and there'll be spaceships in it.

Is there then anything that's really hard to imagine?
Of course there is.

Imagine a piece of matter and yourself inside it, yourself, aware, thinking and therefore knowing you exist, able to move that piece of matter that you're in," to make it sleep or wake, make love or walk uphill.

Imagine a universe-infinite or not, as you wish to picture it- with a billion, billion, billion suns in it.

Imagine a blob of mud whirling madly around one of those suns.

Imagine yourself standing on that blob of mud, whirling with it, whirling through time and space to an unknown destination.


Written by Fredric Brown, 1955

Posted by Vanderleun at Jul 8, 2003 9:34 PM | QuickLink: Permalink
Man: The Final Assembly


"What a piece of work is a man! How noble in reason! how infinite in faculty! in form, in moving, how express and admirable! in action how like an angel! in apprehension how like a god! the beauty of the world! the paragon of animals!" - William Shakespeare

Homo sapiens Other names: man[common name]
Primeval Soup - >cellular organisms - >Eukaryota - >Fungi/Metazoa group - >Metazoa - >Eumetazoa - >Bilateria - >Coelomata - >Deuterostomia - >Chordata - >Craniata - >Vertebrata - >Gnathostomata - >Teleostomi - >Euteleostomi - >Sarcopterygii - >Tetrapoda - >Amniota - >Mammalia - >Theria - >Eutheria - >Primates - >Catarrhini - >Hominidae - >Homo/Pan/Gorilla group - >Homo - > (?)

Illustration by Tom Weller.

Posted by Vanderleun at Jul 6, 2003 8:08 PM | QuickLink: Permalink
"Throw your computers into the eyes of children..."

The American Zen Master
by Dick Allen
from Poetry Daily

Zen also is to be found, he tried to instruct us,
in a car dealer's showroom, and in shoelaces. . . . Also, in America,
you don't sit at the feet of the Zen Master
but you have coffee with him, preferably at Starbucks,
next to one of those outsized suburban malls where everyone looks half dressed,
half dazed and half dead. "The secret of Zen," the Master said,
may come halfway through a Yankee Candle store
when you realize you can smell nothing,
or from reading Hallmark Cards backwards,
or choosing nothing from an overstuffed refrigerator. But it isn't a secret."

As for our questions,
instead of smiting us around the shoulders with a bamboo cane,
he'd hand us little writing-intensive packets of Equal and Sweet 'N Low,
then lean back, smiling like a sushi plate. Sometimes, he'd babble:
"Tums, drive-up windows, ATM machines.
Checkout-line scanners, 1000 Megahertz,
the industrial landscapes so remarkable."
we'd catch him staring at the intricate face
of a digital wristwatch, or contemplating
a simple button-down shirt on a white shelf in a Wal-Mart.
All things. "Throw your computers into the eyes of children,"
he loved to tell us. "Work for the Federal administration,
if that's what you must.
Wear last year's fashions, re-endure the 8os.
Take the last train to Clarksville.
If you meet the Buddha on the road, kill her."
We'd come to Zen

Posted by Vanderleun at Jun 30, 2003 6:59 AM | QuickLink: Permalink
Wild Honey and Gold

Wild Honey and Gold

Today's Quotation from Today in Literature's Email Newsletter

Wild honey smells of freedom
The dust-of sunlight
The mouth of a young girl, like a violet
But gold-smells of nothing....

- - Anna Akhmatova ("Wild Honey Smells of Freedom"), born this June 23,1889

Posted by Vanderleun at Jun 24, 2003 9:10 AM | QuickLink: Permalink
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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


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


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


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.

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...."


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?


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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