If We Believed In Omens…
Before all else Consider this poem from Hitomaro:
A strange old man
Looking out of my deep mirror
We’re All in This Together . . . Of course, “we” aren’t. There is the essential class – which issues and enforces the “mandates” – which it is important to constantly repeat are not laws but literally the arbitrary decrees of politicians grown fat, like blood-gorged ticks, with limitless power somehow acquired in the name of gesund – even though we’re healthy, thanks – and there is the rest of us, deemed non-essential.
We are supposed to just make do; figure out a way to keep a roof over our heads and food in the ‘fridge – without a paycheck. Or a third of one. To pay 100 percent of our mortgages/rent and power bills and so on.
Shutter our businesses; send our employees home to do nothing — while their bills pile up.
The essentials lecture, finger-point – and enforce. But never miss a paycheck. Which we are forced to pay for.
Their bills do not go unpaid. There is no sacrifice by those demanding it – the usual practice of the coercive sector as distinct from the private sector. The latter can only ask for your business; the former can force you to close it – and then make you pay them for doing it.
When there is no work except corporate work, the corporations own you. And then the coercive sector controls you . . . via the corporations. Neat, sweet and not petite.
It is all very essential – and has nothing to do with “stopping the spread.” If it did, then everything would be closed, everyone “locked down.”
If, in fact, we are “all in this together.”
Raconteur Report: The 2021 Quincy Adams Wagstaff Lecture The LEO enthusiasm for “just following orders” for a notable number will be no less than it was for any reichspolizei in the fatherland from 1933-1945, but their early enthusiasm may diminish somewhat markedly when their chances of returning home safe and warm each night starts to become merely a fond wish, and they are felled with all the impersonality of random fiat.
As the guys on the little end of the government’s pointed stick, they’re going to feel the brunt of both giving and receiving firsthand. After the first few get facefuls of backlash from community policing from those less than cheerfully obedient to the distant diktats of our would-be overlords, and with no similar downward pressure from the top limiting their life expectancy, enforcement will quickly devolve to a series of Monday-morning “Gotcha!” moves against the unlucky and the unwary, after the shooting stops, while beat cops turn into 2M Sgt. Schulzes 24/7/365.
Alien Dumplings – A Downright Scary-Looking Dish Introduced in 2017, as a promotional collaboration between the Saga prefectural government and Tokyo-based restaurant 蔓餃苑 (Dumpling Kingdom), Ariake dumplings got a lot of attention online at the time, due to their unusual appearance. They consist of traditional dumplings with the xenomorph-like fried or boiled heads of warusobo fish sticking out of them. They are quite a feast for the eyes…
100 Tips for a Better Life – LessWrong 91. Human mood and well-being are heavily influenced by simple things: Exercise, good sleep, light, being in nature. It’s cheap to experiment with these.
92. You have vanishingly little political influence and every thought you spend on politics will probably come to nothing. Consider building things instead, or at least going for a walk.
93. Sturgeon’s law states that 90% of everything is crap. If you dislike poetry, or fine art, or anything, it’s possible you’ve only ever seen the crap. Go looking!
“Is it that God has at last removed his blessing from the U.S.A. and what we feel now is just the clank of the old historical machinery, the sudden jerking ahead of the roller-coaster cars as the chain catches hold and carries us back into history with its ordinary catastrophes, carries us out and up toward the brink from that felicitous and privileged siding where even unbelievers admitted that if it was not God who blessed the U.S.A., then at least some great good luck had befallen us, and that now the blessing or the luck is over, the machinery clanks, the chain catches hold, and the cars jerk forward?” ― Walker Percy, Love in the Ruins
Because the source of the crazes, the spiritual driver that underlies the material aspects, is the same evil spirit of destruction that fuels abortion, professional careers, and every other form of female self-negation intended to prevent young women from becoming mothers. Because mothers are the key civilization; an attack on motherhood is an attack on society’s ability to sustain itself.
The Pandemic Narrative Mutates Though this mutation could prove deadly, nobody knows for sure. As the reluctance of American health care workers shows, there are as many dead predictions this year as hospital patients. The longer the pandemic lasts, the higher the cumulative fatality rate among expert reputations. Perhaps that “liminal moment” explains a Guardian headline: “Covid poses ‘greatest threat to mental health since second world war.” In the long run, the crisis may be more about what we did to ourselves than what the actual virus did to us.
”Everybody wants to be Cary Grant. I want to be Cary Grant” — Cary Grant ”I have spent the greater part of my life fluctuating between Archie Leach and Cary Grant; unsure of either, suspecting each. Only recently have I begun to unify them into one person: the man and the boy in me, the mother and the father and all people in me, the hate and love, and all the degrees of each in me, and the power of God in me.”
A bricklayer built a “tunnel of love” to see his lover, but was caught by her husband – The spouse noticed the hole under their house, after searching for the man inside their home.
Stargazy Pie – An English Pastry Dish With Fish Heads Sticking Out of It But none of these pastry treats hold a candle to the famous Stargazy Pie, when it comes to wow factor. No matter how elaborate your pie design is, you just can’t beat half a dozen cooked sardine heads (and sometimes tails) sticking out from the hearty dough crust, looking towards the sky. It looks almost as “delicious” as Japan’s alien dumplings, doesn’t it?
Hundreds of Birds Mysteriously Drop Dead During New Year’s Eve Celebration “It could be that they died from fear,” Diglio said. “They can fly up together and knock against each other, or hit windows or electric power lines. Let’s not forget they can also die of heart attacks.” Photos of this tragic incident have been making news headlines for the past six days, and despite the fireworks being the main “suspect”, we still don’t know for sure what killed these birds. It’s not the first such mystery, either. A couple of years ago, almost 5,000 of birds were found dead on the shores of a lake in India.
Schematic for ‘5G Chip’ Allegedly Implanted in Covid-19 Vaccines Is Actually for Guitar Pedal Take this ‘5G chip in Covid-19 vaccines’ phobia that has taken on a life of its own online, despite any sort of scientific evidence backing it up. Well, at least no real evidence, because there is plenty of fake proof going around, including a rather complex schematic of a so-called 5G chip allegedly implanted in Covid-19 vaccines. Only that schematic is actually of a badass guitar pedal…The thing is, no ideology can withstand an honest confrontation with reality. No idea can account for all of reality. There is always some scrap of reality that flutters away beyond the limits of the idea. And when that happens, we have to choose: either we are willing to expand our perspective and look for a way to adjust our idea to allow for what is, or we hunt down and destroy everything that threatens our ideology.
Failure to understand someone else’s perspective is exactly that: a failure. It’s a failure of the imagination, both on a moral level and an emotional level. It is the failure to conceive of the world as larger than our own experience.
What the Saga of Jack Ma Says About China Under Xi Jinping Then, late last week, Ma was replaced by another Alibaba executive for the televised final episode of a business talent contest he had been helming, with his picture scrubbed from the gallery of judges. Ma has now not been seen in public for at least two months. An Alibaba spokeswoman declined to comment on his whereabouts when contacted by TIME.
China’s ‘Capitalist’ Experiment Winds Down: West Must Prepare for Fallout In a hybrid autocratic-capitalist model, capitalism is the means to generate wealth, but power is the end goal. Successful capitalists naturally begin to demand that their personal and property rights be protected from authoritarian fiat. Capital in the hands of entrepreneurs is a political resource; it poses a threat to the implementation of centralized plans.
Realizing this, the CCP has begun to assert control over the private sector by “installing . . . Party officials inside private firms” and having state-backed firms invest in private enterprises. In the absence of civil rights or an independent judiciary, “private” companies have no real independence from the government in China. Dissent and demands for civil rights are a threat to the regime and will be crushed.
Meanwhile back in the United States…
Living with the Great Plague of 1665 – The City appointed and remunerated physicians and surgeons, as required by the Orders. The Crown and City shared fears of the poor and their potential for disorder, and came down hard on possible occasions of it. The Plague Orders banned âPlayes, Bear-baitings, Games, Singing of Ballads, Buckler-play, or such like causes of Assemblies of peopleâ; the Mayor and Aldermen in addition closed grammar and other schools, especially dancing and fencing schools. The Plague Orders prohibited dinners at taverns, alehouses, âand other places of common entertainmentâ; the Mayor and Aldermen instructed innholders not to feed strangers within doors but permitted them to sell food and drink at the door.
Catastrophe Is All Around Us What, then, is the path to the future? We can stay on the present catastrophic course or we can reverse it. The sooner governments wise up and stop hurting everyone like this the sooner the healing can begin. It will take years, decades, but a version of the rule of medicine from the ancient days pertains: first stop doing harm.
Sheer cowardice explains most of the dearth of dissent. It’s easy to forget how cravenly careerist people become when they are afraid. Most people would rather lie or be silent than risk facing disapproval of friends and colleagues. Cancel culture makes this worse. Doctors who dare talk about natural immunities or the talisman of masks and distancing find themselves investigated by medical boards. Academics who speak out are accused of encouraging superspreaders, blasted by colleagues including students. It’s way beyond witch hunts at this point. As a result, you can easily get the impression that everyone agrees with the desperate need to dismantle civilization as we know it.
And even after a full year, the public remains mostly deeply ignorant of the age/health gradient of Covid-19 fatalities, even though we’ve known this since February of last year! According to the CDC — even conceding the accuracy of testing and exigencies of fatality classification –it’s 99.997% for 0-19 years, 99.98% for 20-49 years, 99.5% for 50-69 years, and 94.6% for 70 years. It’s nursing homes that have been a main vector for disease outcomes. The threat to school-age kids approaches zero. The more information we get the more normalized the SARS-CoV-2 pathogen seems, a respiratory and flu-like illness we have seen become pandemic before it became endemic just like another dozen times in the last hundred years. We didn’t shut down society, and, for that reason, we managed them just fine.
Living with the Great Plague of 1665 – The City appointed and remunerated physicians and surgeons, as required by the Orders. The Crown and City shared fears of the poor and their potential for disorder, and came down hard on possible occasions of it. The Plague Orders banned Playes, Bear-baitings, Games, Singing of Ballads, Buckler-play, or such like causes of Assemblies of people; the Mayor and Aldermen in addition closed grammar and other schools, especially dancing and fencing schools. The Plague Orders prohibited dinners at taverns, alehouses, and other places of common entertainment; the Mayor and Aldermen instructed innholders not to feed strangers within doors but permitted them to sell food and drink at the door.