February 19, 2016

Tabbing Out on the Week That Was

First, by the power invested in me I hereby declare a state of cocktail emergency:

Okay? Good.

A couple of those and we are ready to meditate on "what is past, or passing, or to come."

180 law clerks line the stairs in front of the U.S. Supreme Court in anticipation of the arrival of Associate Justice Antonin Scalia's casket at the court building on February 19, 2016 in Washington, DC., Justice Scalia will lie in repose in the Great Hall of the high court where visitors will pay their respects. Photos of the Week: 2/13-2/19 - The Atlantic

The Robot Future | The reality is a race (is race the right word?) of super intelligent robots would quickly lose interest in humans.

From the perspective of the robots, humans would be as interesting to them as ants are to us. Maybe a few weirdo robots would make a hobby of studying us, but otherwise, the robots would have bigger fish to fry. Assuming anever accelerating evolution of their intelligence, the robots will depart soon after they become aware. The universe is just too big and interesting to hang around with the talking monkeys.

"Undecided" toppled as Most Trusted Source of News, Commentary’ A Suffolk University/USA Today poll released Wednesday finds “Undecided” slipping to second place with 22 percent, behind the upstart Fox News Channel, taking first place with 27.5 percent.

Whirling Dervishes perform a Sema Ceremony on February 13, 2016, in Konya, Turkey.

The Sema Ceremony is performed by members of the Mevlevi Order or more famously known as Whirling Dervishes, due to the whirling performed during the ceremony. The Mevlevi Order of Dervishes was founded by Jalal ad-Din Muhammad Balkhi-Rumi. Rumi, whose religion was love, was one of the worlds most read poets, and after his death in 1273 the order was continued by his sons and grandsons. Today pilgrims come from across Turkey and overseas to visit Konya and the site of Rumi's tomb, one of Turkey's most visited tourist attractions. Despite the Mevlevi Order being shut down and made illegal in 1925 by the new Turkey Republic, today the Whirling Dervishes are the symbol of Turkey's tourism campaigns. In 2008, the Sema Ceremony was confirmed by UNESCO as amongst the Masterpieces of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity.

Trump for President and National Talk Show Host | In Hollywood we call it a hyphenate: writer-director, actor-producer, etc. Donald Trump should be America's first president-talk show host.

French art professor Abraham Poincheval sits on a ship mast platform in Rennes, western France, on February 16, 2016, where he plans to meditate and write on questions of perspective as part of an art installation. The platform is 12 meters high and the size of a single bed, and he brought food, clothes and a sleeping bag for his one-week stay.

Futurologist Dr Ian Pearson says technology is causing humans to 'evolve' | As humans embrace technological advances and gradually become androids, we could gradually see Homo sapiens being replaced by Homo optimus. This conceptual image shows four stages of human evolution (left to right) showing Australopithecus, Homo habilis, Homo erectus and Homo sapiens

Before us is a good looking teenage girl slumped contentedly on a small chaise longue.

In her left hand she holds a white hand mirror.  The mirror is bathed in light from the window behind her.  She studies her own reflection.  As we have seen in many of Balthus’ paintings her legs are spread wide apart and her short skirt has ridden up exposing her thighs.  Her bodice lies open and has slipped off her right shoulder.  Around her neck we see a pearl necklace.  On her feet is a pair of white slippers.  Behind her there is a wooden table upon which is a white bowl.  In the background there is a roaring fire being tended to by a man who is stripped to the waist. 
Thus, Balthus. Part 4. Setsuko and the latter days @ my daily art display, summing the week up into a ball where I learn, and not for the first time, that:

An aged man is but a paltry thing,
A tattered coat upon a stick, unless
Soul clap its hands and sing, and louder sing
For every tatter in its mortal dress,
Nor is there singing school but studying
Monuments of its own magnificence;
And therefore I have sailed the seas and come
To the holy city of Byzantium.

Posted by gerardvanderleun at February 19, 2016 7:37 PM
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"It is impossible to speak in such a way that you cannot be misunderstood." -- Karl Popper N.B.: Comments are moderated and may not appear immediately. Comments that exceed the obscenity or stupidity limits will be either edited or expunged.

Confusingly enough, Yeats also wrote a poem title Byzantium

Stanza IV of Sailing says:

Once out of nature I shall never take
My bodily form from any natural thing,
But such a form as Grecian goldsmiths make
Of hammered gold and gold enamelling
To keep a drowsy Emperor awake;
Or set upon a golden bough to sing
To lords and ladies of Byzantium
Of what is past, or passing, or to come.

And The third stanza of Byzantium returns to the golden bird:

Miracle, bird or golden handiwork,
More miracle than bird or handiwork,
Planted on the starlit golden bough,
Can like the cocks of Hades crow,
Or, by the moon embittered, scorn aloud
In glory of changeless metal
Common bird or petal
And all complexities of mire or blood.

Posted by: Fat Man at February 19, 2016 9:02 PM

Immolating all those Law Clerks to keep Scalia company in Valhalla gets my vote.

Posted by: Kinch at February 20, 2016 1:03 AM

180 law clerks.... That third guy in line didn't get the word on uniform of the day.

Posted by: BillH at February 20, 2016 6:40 AM

Right on.

Posted by: Casey Klahn at February 20, 2016 10:39 AM

Q: What do you call a lawyer with an IQ of 70?
A: Your honor.

Posted by: Denny at February 20, 2016 11:41 AM

Limit the Supreme's to two clerks and they will get into a good deal less that doesn't concern them.

Posted by: james wilson at February 20, 2016 2:42 PM

Miss cans dis say three ounces, didn't she? Well it doesn't matter, I didn't notice the spillage till the third time through.

Posted by: sTevo at February 20, 2016 5:07 PM

"....part of an art installation."

And no, it's not in the eye of the beholder and never was. Even little kids know what shit is but some how some adults don't.

Posted by: ghostsniper at February 20, 2016 5:27 PM

The clerk, 4th from the front, was there on Scalia's order to demonstrate that things are not always black or white.

Posted by: Howard Nelson at February 20, 2016 6:39 PM

Clerking for Supreme Court Justices appears from out here in the boondocks to be a highly sought-after leg-up in the present-day Cursus Dishonorum. Therefore, at the very least, said clerks should be made to survive (say) three episodes participation in (say) Duck Dynasty before any decision is made as to their suitability to continue on their power-crazed unstoppable careers (sometimes in both senses of the word). Prior service in Marine Recon would gain an exemption.

Posted by: kinch at February 20, 2016 8:10 PM

Stretched out the way she is with that 1/2 nekked messican right there I'm not surprised she's sportin' a pearl necklace.


Posted by: ghostsniper at February 22, 2016 9:45 AM

The dervishes, whirling as a means of meditation, seeking reality, learn what is immutable but not transmittable.
Short cuts cut short achievement here and now, but not, eventually, there and then. Take heart.

Posted by: Howard Nelson at February 26, 2016 3:08 PM