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Thursday, January 10, 2013

THE NEWS IS THE BLUES

     winter trees by tj worthington



A few minutes ago I saw a headline that said, Cockroaches and traffic jams are more popular than Congress. It told me there had been some kind of survey. I felt like it was obvious, decided not to look at the article. Then I thought about the survey part and decided to take a look. It might have something interesting in it besides the obvious. It showed a clever graph in relation to percentages of what a test sample of people thought of varieties of subjects besides Congress. It came up 48% of the people tested preferred lice to Congress. And 38% like meth labs less than Congress. Corny bunch of statistics, but clever. It does make a picture. It's like the republican party playing all or nothing stakes with a pair of twos. I have to say that after watching the systematic dismantling of American Democracy by republicans over the last 32+ years, they do not represent their constituents.  If republicans are the party of the rich, they don't give a very good show for the people they represent. As the republican politicians represent the rich, they make the rich look dumber than I'd thought. Money and intelligence don't necessarily go together. They make it certain we understand clearly they do not represent us, the people that work for a living. Nor do they represent the middle class, the management class.

I've not looked into it with fact-checker, but came across a statistic a few weeks ago saying Turtle McConnell's fortune six years ago amounted to three million. This year it's 24 million. Evidently according to tax records. I don't think the Senate pays that well. Except under the table. Good boy. Just say No. Of course, it's above-board, within the law. I trust the democrat party is preparing to defeat McConnell next election cycle. Boner too. They'll be replaced by just as bad or worse. So it really doesn't matter. It's not like they have the cream of the crop to pick from. It's more like they pick from the dregs. For one thing, to be a republican, you are expected to reject the scientific method, take your cues from Rush Limbaugh, demonstrate disdain for education, and call absence of intelligence patriotism. It goes past my understanding that the republican half of the Congress has been to college, some to law school. They do not represent American advanced education well. Did all of them pay somebody to go to school for them? Looking at the Congressional republicans as representative of the American people (I don't mean actively representing in Congress, but representing like a mirror image), we are a stupid bunch of self-centered goose-stepping ass-kissers that only lie when we speak. N'est pas?

I used to believe that when things got so bad, it would be a natural next thing for a turn about of fortune. Our government doesn't operate that way. It's done by propaganda. The republican party is not in danger of going away. Only in danger of not being able to get 51% until they come up with new strategies not based in the same lies. Artful propaganda will take care of it. When a certain kind of propaganda ceases to work, a new one steps into its place. It's a world created by the mind that is totally of the mind, changes as fast as flashing lights in Las Vegas, and the rules are rules of the mind with little to no relation to the world of gravity as we know it. They'll find a new line of nonsense to spin into the illusion of substance and get back the people they alienated. If they went away, just faded out, the democrat party would split the way churches split and we'd have the republicans again. There's no going away. In a way, I don't care. In another way, I do care. When I see that I do care, then I look at the situation as it is. I have no power and never wanted power. I have no money and never wanted money. In America power and money are the same. Which is to say, I am not a player. Therefore, it is not very mindful to complain that I have no power behind my voice where DC is concerned. All I'm doing is tapping into that mind game with my mind and riding it like a merry-go-round. John Lennon's voice comes to mind, I'm just sitting here watching the wheels go round and round. I really love to watch them roll.

Wouldn't I do better to focus on the sculpture and the life of Constantin Brancusi? I'd do better to look through a world atlas with satellite images. If I really thought about the value of what I let my mind follow, I'd be ignoring the news and looking at a book of Larry Rivers images. I'd be reading essays and looking at pictures in the extraordinarily beautiful book, The ART of ZEN. I'd be reading essays by Ajit Mookerjee and looking at pictures in YOGA ART. I'd read again An ART Of OUR OWN, by Roger Lipsey, a view of the spiritual in 20th century art. Maybe instead of reading it straight through, I'll read it an artist at a time. Skip around like in a Cortazar novel. Julio Cortazar. It wouldn't hurt to reread him. He tells a good story. I could look at pictures by Kurt Schwitters and read about his life. Quite a character. I could read some more in a couple of books I have of David Hockney, one by him. I could finish Duchamp's biography. I could look at the Motherwell book or the Malevich book, pictures of minimalist art, Greek art, Andy Warhol, Franz Kline, Jasper Johns, Duchamp, Max Ernst, Gorky, Whistler. All this within reach of where I sit and I listen to the news like there is something to it. Considering that I have an unknown but limited time of future left in this body, why am I listening to the news? Why do I care about being represented by Virginia Foxx in Raleigh? She does not represent me in any way. I daresay she's never listened to Jane's Addiction.

The news really does bring me down. I hear about Israel blowing the hell out of Gaza and rockets. Syrian army targeting children, American republicans dismantling democracy viciously with hatred for the working poor, American aggression, sex crimes, kids killed at school. Surely, to balance the negative vibes of the events that get on the news, there is the same amount, at least, of events that are to our benefit. Media is not a place to go to find such. Internet maybe. Funny how we have to look for the good news. When we find it, it's boring. Who cares about a third grade girl in 4-H raising a show bull? I visit friends Justin and Crystal watching football on tv. After the games, I've come to like shows of the guys in Louisiana swamps catching alligators, and one called Moonshiners. Hillbillies on the one hand and Cajuns on the other. The Louisiana accent has subtitles on the screen. I like seeing regular people, the kind of people I know and live among, have come to value and appreciate, the people that don't pay attention to anything outside the immediate world of their neighbors, the people they work with and are kin to, the kind of people you find all the way up and down the Appalachian chain. I understand the Cajun culture of Louisiana is a world of its own, too. We have pockets of traditional and non-traditional music all over the country in rural areas and cities. What we have access by media to is music as product. The good news is that wherever you live, there are people playing traditional music of your region someplace. You may have to drive a ways, but probably not more than fifty miles. I drive forty miles to Woodlawn almost once a week for music that is worth every minute on the road.


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