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Wednesday, July 31, 2013

WHITE VIOLENCE




I saw a clip on facebook from the Chris Hayes show, ALL IN. He had a guest from the West Coast, Cord Jefferson a writer at gawker.com, whose theme was taking a look at white culture with a cold eye. He said black culture is taken for a violent culture the tv news affirms. He pointed out a recent riot at Huntington Beach in California where a crowd of unruly white boys broke loose at a surfing competition, tearing up, looting, being stupid white boys, drunk, high and violent. He showed a short video of knocking over some porta-potties and making mayhem. Seeing the guys involved, watching them act like they saw themselves in a Rambo movie, I thought these are the same guys you see in a mosh pit at hard-core punk concerts, college jocks pretending to be Vikings raiding an Irish seaside village. Similar mayhem on a larger scale happened at the end of Woodstock 99. They're the people you see down in front at big concerts. At Rolling Stones concerts now they have white pony tails.



I was glad to hear Cord Jefferson address the issue of white violence. Because most white people don't behave violently (outside the house). We tend to think of the violent people as aberrant, people we don't know, those people. I believe the same can be said of the black people, who I have known to be peaceable people. I don't know the world of the inner city gangbangers, nor do I know what it is like to be peaceable people trying to raise respectable kids in a world that won't accept them. We in the white world tend not to even think about the violent people. We stay away from places where something unpredictable might erupt, In high school we let the hoods stay to themselves, while the jocks are the rock stars, automatic popularity, access to the hottest babes, violent behavior rewarded with a virtual merit badge for coolness. Maybe it is an aspect of warrior culture where the boys are raised to kill and be killed for the flag to encourage boys to rowdiness. In WW2 the boys who volunteered to fly the kamikazes to their death would have the run of the bars and whores before his flight. I believe several "terrorists" from the Middle East have been found to be committing all the sins before their suicide moment, because they automatically go to heaven, so just as well get a little here when it doesn't count against you at heaven's door.



I've often wondered if college boy violence and drunkenness is encouraged. During that time of my life, it was peer pressure by tradition, by custom, for the boys to be at least a little bit wild. Boys quite naturally fight. Or maybe it has become that way because it was encouraged from birth. Parents and everybody else treat little girls very differently from how they treat little boys. From day one, it's Little Man or Princess. Daddies that grew up with a name for fighting tend to want their boys to be good fighters too. The boys at school who are the fighters are a minority, quite a minority. At all the schools I went to, most of the boys just wanted to get along in peace. I don't have any idea what it's like to be in school now. It would be different in different places. I suspect the tough guy persona is the same now as then, just different, again, in different places. The guys I saw in the Huntington Beach incident were the same as guys I knew in high school, ball caps on backwards the only difference. This is American white guy behavior. These are the guys the others look up to and admire, but secretly don't. There is not only training, but testosterone has its role too. Roosters, dogs and tomcats are the closest to home examples. The only thing I can say about the fighting urge among men is, that's what we do. History is ongoing warfare of the blood-letting variety, up close and personal, until the 20th Century. And now the drones.



I believe this man, Cord Jefferson, is onto something. I know he is. It's in front of our faces every day obvious, and suddenly someone has pointed it out as a social phenomenon we need to look at, now that black violence has been a media sensation for so many years. White violence has been deprived of media attention, except for school slayings. But no matter how many of these school killings, no media attention given to it as white on white violence as an issue. It's just accepted that they're white guys, outsiders. They must be proven outsiders, which they are, to distinguish them from the respectable white people. Now that white people are only half the population, white people no longer are an automatic majority. Now that white people are no longer the majority, it's a good time to size up privileged white violence, bring it up for examination with the same zeal as black violence. White boys grow up in a tough world of other white boys. Violence by white boys is privileged. In corporate media world I don't see an examination of privileged white boys going very far. Sponsors don't want too much that doesn't look good about the privileged race. The corporate world is about the privileged race, as are the congress, the senate, the supreme court, the Bank. Mr Whiteman, the philosophe of the republican party, the man so easy for cartoonists to make into a pig, Rush Limbaugh, has lost his airwaves status. Sponsors have withdrawn. White man hatred is no longer acceptable. I'd like to see this a trend to cease the glorification of white violence, mental as well as physical.

 
 
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Tuesday, July 30, 2013

COME ON SECOND COMING



north carolina



I see varieties of crazy news events being uncovered by internet news so fast it's kind of alarming, the quickness. A black man in Florida picking up a pack of cigarettes in his own car that was parked in front of his own house, two cops shot seven rounds, hit his car three times, the house once, his leg once and two more no telling where. Jimi Hendrix echoes in my head, They shot him down to the ground. He survived it with time in the hospital. Evidently they got him pretty good. I thought cops shot to kill, but these being Florida cops, maybe they do like LA gangbangers, bang-bang-bang, hoping maybe one will connect with target. We get crazy news like this from towns all over the country. It gives the impression these events are new and happening more. I think the case is that this sort of goof-ball police behavior has been going on everyplace. The kind of news that makes the local evening news shows, but doesn't have enough blood to make the multi-national corporate news. News that is not making the news is making the internet, bringing forward much that has been overlooked for many years. In this way the internet has become so beneficial for the gum-chewing masses, Murka Inc may find probable cause to put an end to the internet, or, more likely manipulate it the way they manipulate the news to make the victim look like the criminal and the criminal the victim.




Internet is the people's power, ideally, but I can't imagine it going very far before it is labeled terrorist. I see Limbaugh and Hannity have lost so many sponsors the radio station is now running them at a serious loss until end of year when evidently their contract runs out. That is heartening, unless the only thing it means is they have tilled their soil, planted their seeds until they're not needed any more. They sure as hell moronified the white men of Murka Inc over the last twenty or more years. I know a couple of twenty-somethings whose daddy (a preacher) made them listen to Rush (some pigs are more equal than others) Limbaugh every morning before they went to school. I feel sorry for his kids, now parrots of the Reagan Revolution. I feel a longing hope democracy is really not dead in Murka Inc, but that's like standing over somebody's grave wishing them back. What's gone is gone. From here on, it's going to be hell to pay. Corporate Bank has absolute control and will not let it go. That's square one, the starting place. It troubles me that the home of the brave, the land of the free, is now just an old-timey song of another Age, like it's as far away as the Roman Empire.

 


It seems like all that went before, all the progression to make America the Great over about four centuries of nation building, killing the continent's population, putting survivors into concentration camps called reservations for over a hundred years, poverty enforced by FBI. We have a great karmic debt to the people whose land we call our home. At the same time I look at the white tsunami that swept the native peoples off their homes, I recall among the Plains Indians the story of White Buffalo Calf Woman, who came to I think it was the Lakota people and introduced the peace pipe, taught them about living in peace amongst themselves. She said if they took to warring with each other, a force would come from outside and wipe them all away. It came true. Now the Indians wait for her return. The Jews continue to wait for Jesus. The Christians still wait for the return of Jesus from the clouds. Maybe the passing of the planet Nibiru could inspire some astrological force that would raise the consciousness of all life on earth to where we humans might say, Lets' really live in peace, and mean it. Could it be that easy?

 



I'm all for the Lord coming again, though I don't know what it means. I have a fair certainty it is not going to be the body of Jesus from 2000 years ago drifting down from a cloud ever so slowly and dramatically like Mary Poppins for the tv cameras with rainbows all around and angels singing Hallelujah, dropping in on Pat Robertson's 700 Club, first stop. Hallelujah Praise the Lord. Ever thought about how cold it is up above the clouds? He would have to descend slowly to thaw gradually. It's my understanding that when this whatever it is that's called the Second Coming occurs, it will be at a time when the situation humanity is in looks like a no way out corner. When we're all freaking out because there's nothing left to do but fill the air with nukes programmed to specific destinations, that's the kind of time it takes. One of the nuttiest aspects of humanity I've seen in my lifetime is the apparent dependence on believing something or somebody is going to come along from outside, from some yet-unknown place and save us from ourselves. If some sort of Divine intervention occurs, I'd like to be living to see it, to see how it manifests. We need some intelligent help. The intelligence of humans has been eaten by television.

      
 
 
 
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Monday, July 29, 2013

SCENE FROM A SOUTHERN NOVEL


landon


Visiting with friends this afternoon, outside at sunset. Three kids, Vada 2, Landon 5, and Cheyanne 6, were playing the game Freeze. Cheyanne and Landon ran across the grass of a half acre yard until Vada hollered, "Freeze." The two running stopped and waited for Vada to say, "Green light," and they'd run again until Vada hollered, "Freeze." This game evolved into kicking a soccer ball trying to kick it past daddy, Justin, to score a point. Then daddy would try to kick the ball past Cheyanne and Landon. The kids were animated in continuous motion, missing the ball, turning and running after it, returning it with a barefooted toe kick to daddy. Daddy told Cheyenne it wouldn't hurt her toes if she kicked the ball with the inside of her foot. Cheyanne said she liked kicking it with her toes. She knew how to kick it. The sky had plenty of light in the gloaming and we noticed a bat flying around, then the lightning bugs came out. The kids ran around trying to catch them. Cheyanne was a good one at catching lightning bugs. She just reached up and plucked one out of the air with both hands, taking care not to hurt it like it was a bird. At one point, Cheyanne talking said, "Y'all," speaking to all of us, and I got a flash that I was reading a Southern novel. Looking at the kids, I saw Southern kids growing up Southern. It's in their blood. It's in their habit patterns.


vada


It was actually a sublime moment for me with these people who are so close to my heart they're the same as my own. Crystal carried Vada to me and told Vada to "Do bless-your-heart to TJ." Vada put her hand on top of my head and moved her hand down my cheek to my chin saying, "Bless your heart." The fun in it was she says it with such soul it's comic in a two year old. We laughed, Vada giggled and tucked her head under Crystal's chin laughing. These are the people I love with all my heart, playing, laughing, daddy teaching the kids skills with ball playing. Justin is inclined to teach his kids ball game skills on his own. I heard a few months ago on NPR a child psychologist talking about how important play with a ball is in a child's brain development. When I told Justin what I'd heard, it affirmed for him that it was as important as he intuited. Cheyanne is evidently going to be playing soccer soon with a children's group.


cheyanne


One day last week, Cheyanne was running over a gravel driveway, tripped and fell flat down on the gravel. Her left elbow was skinned a little bit, not bleeding. She got up sobbing lightly, went to daddy, and daddy told her she's going to have to get used to falling down if she's going to play soccer. It's time to start learning to suck it up when you fall down. You get up and keep on going. She drifted over to me and leaned into my left side. I put my hand on her shoulder, gave her a gesture of a hug and said, "I know it hurts." I felt like that was all she really needed was for somebody to acknowledge with her that it hurts. I thought of putting kerosene on it, because kerosene draws the pain out. Can't explain it, but it works. No kerosene. I thought of water, but we'd have to go all the way to the house for water. Suddenly, it didn't hurt so bad. She saw the other kids playing with a Frisbee and she ran off to throw Frisbee.


landon
 

Landon can run in flip-flops as fast as he can run in shoes. Justin said he wears flip-flops all the time. That's what he likes. I've seen Southeastern Asians in documentaries wearing their version of the same and running. I watch in awe seeing Asians run in flip-flops. I can't even walk in them. This evening I was watching Landon run full tilt over the grass, them little legs just a-flyin, flip-flips hugging his feet like they were taped on with duct tape. It heartens me to see the good times Justin has with his kids and his wife, Crystal. I feel good in the heart chakra seeing them all together playing as hard as they could go. One time Vada fell flat on her face running full speed on the grass. It stunned her. She started to cry, stopped herself, jumped up laughing and took off running full speed. Being able to run wide-open like Cheyanne and Landon is new to two-year old baby. She laughed all the time she ran and she ran for the sake of running, ran everywhere she went. It was like watching Wendy in Peter Pan learning to fly.

cheyanne
 
landon
 
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Saturday, July 27, 2013

THE WAIST OF THE HOURGLASS

 
van gogh

 
Why do we concern ourselves with deniers of global warming, deniers of evolution, deniers of the scientific method? Way too much attention is given to these people. So a fundamentalist republican in Kansas says evolution is evil, then somebody has to respond to it. I'd like to see no more response to these people. Too many articles are written about them, too much talk time given to them. Somebody wants to say God made a clay doll, blew it up like a balloon and named it Adam, go ahead. I've known people who hadn't even caught up with the round earth cosmology. Cosmologies take a long time to be believed by everybody on earth. And so what if somebody doesn't see it the way I see it. It's 500+ years western civilization has been going by the round earth cosmology. Evolution has been around a century and a half as a cosmology, and just like the round earth "theory," it's the Christian religion that is having a fit again. I weary of making a big deal of people who want creationism. Let them have it. Scientific findings are not a matter of popular acceptance. The earth was always round when it was believed to be flat. Evolution has been the case all the time it was not understood. Evolution and global warming are not dependent on polls, nor are they theories. Gravity is invisible, but it works. Air is invisible, but the air we breathe is our life. Consciousness is invisible, but consciousness is our most intimate self, the part of self that sees our dreams.

van gogh


Unfortunately with global warming, the deniers are the corporate bosses creating global warming. And we can't stop them. They rule absolutely. They make the laws to their benefit paying the legislators who have no interest in we the people except as the elephant to be manipulated at election time. Fundamentalists and republicans have made a very big deal of denying evolution, and they get taken seriously every time, like they have a right to their opinion. Ok, so let them say it. Why respond? When somebody starts talking that nonsense, I'm done. I don't waste my time arguing. I'm just gone. It's the same with Teabaggers. They are cement-heads parroting party-line like good Soviet Communists. They have nothing to say to me on the matter and I have nothing to say to them. At the same time that I want nothing to do with that mind, I have to back up the investigative opposition that stands up to the nonsense of Faux news fiction with fact checkers, pointing out the bullshit as it drops. As strategy, this is necessary. I do see the deniers need controlling. I'm glad we have these people watching them closely to cry foul, stop their momentum with a fiction before it starts. I don't see how somebody can pay such close attention to them to ferret out the deceptions and make them public. These people are a valuable service to the rest of us. When misinformation is repeated enough, it becomes reality to the people who fall for it.

van gogh


Looking back on this time from the future will be about consumerism and greed, decadence to make Roman decadence look respectable. When I look at our place in the continuum of time I see the whole of humanity passing through the waist in the hourglass from the civilization that went before, horses, wagons, candlelight, to machines, technology, electricity. It is a time of old belief systems that have been nurtured so long they became traditions, breaking them down, taking everything down to the zero point between plus and minus, cleaning the slate. I'm wondering if the demise of the economy as we know it could be its conclusion in self-consumption, clearing itself out of the way to make an opening for whatever economic system it will evolve into. This time of population explosion will last as long as oil lasts. The culture oil created will change into what's next as radically as we changed into oil culture. My feeling is the cultures that follow oil abundance will be what is left after a major die-off. Then the new ways will emerge that possibly will characterize the nature of human civilization as it will be from there on, until the next big change. I don't mean any of this like prophecy. It's just the flow I see from my own place in this world.

van gogh



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Friday, July 26, 2013

EVERY DAY ACQUIESCENCE



banksy




In my own little world the everyday life part of it doesn't seem so crazy. The people I know live their lives like usual. Sparta has less and less business. It feels like Sparta is a waste land. What businesses are open, they're barely getting by and staying open because they can't afford to close. This started in the year 2000, immediately after the Shakespearean usurping of power by the republicans after losing the election. The business activity in Sparta started slowing down right away. Through the 90s Sparta was staying afloat, not thriving, but it was looking like Sparta was a living entity. At the same time, Hong Kong transitioned from British colonial rule to mainland Chinese. It was no big thing looking from the outside. The Hong Kong population acquiesced immediately, overnight, to the new way things would be. From outside, one change I've seen is the Hong Kong men with guns movies had guns shooting from start to finish, bodies dropping one after the other. Since 2000 I see less gun shooting in the men with guns movies. They have gone into mind games between cops and gangsters. They didn't cut out the shooting, but it seems like the newer Hong Kong movies have become more mental than physical. Mainland Chinese films don't have guns, none that I've ever seen, except in wars.



At the time, I found it striking how Hong Kong's character had to change from one belief system to another overnight, and Sparta's character changed overnight too. It was like business was shut down throughout the republican administration usurped by judicial fiat. Everybody knew the election was stolen. It's just that everybody also knew our only recourse was to acquiesce. They destroyed our economy, our legal system, our political system, our way of life, all of it without resistance. All of it done in the face of acquiescence. The republicans by now have the economy so destroyed there probably won't be any coming back. I'm not talking about the stock market economy. It only applies to the takers, aka the rich, like casinos in Europe. The rest of us out here in the world are having our resources stripped from us by the super rich, our labor hardly compensated for at all. The Reagan Revolution has kept income for the working people steady for over 30 years while inflation goes up, up, up, and our resources are funneled into offshore tax free banks. We pay the taxes from our labor to keep a military going that is way out of proportion to sensible, and amounts to a circle of wagons around gated communities. It's for the benefit of the people that don't pay taxes.

antoni tapies


All of us know this is going on, regardless of whether we like it or not politically, and we acquiesce. I hear somebody saying, "What else can we do?" That's exactly what we're supposed to do, acquiesce. It's evidently the natural thing for us to do. I see people up in years who have spent their lives asserting their belief system onto government, like socialists for example, one of many examples, people who spent their lives frustrated and angry that American government is about money only, that it doesn't change. Angry all the time. It's either commit to actively making specific changes in government policy or acquiesce. It's how we keep the peace, we give in. A neighbor's dog has been killing the possums that live under my house, that keep the house free of rodents, snakes, country critters looking for sheltered places to nest. I don't like having my possums killed, but I don't want to kill the dog, and I don't want to make a fuss about it. So I say, to hell with it, and acquiesce. I honestly would like to kill the dog, because it also killed my favorite cat. But I can't allow myself to do it. I've thought of hiring it done, but tell myself it is not somebody else wanting the dog dead, it's me. Therefore, it's mine to be the one to kill the dog, not somebody else. But I can't do it. I once killed a dog over killing my chickens, and told myself I'll never do it again. Though, if the dog were to kill Caterpillar I would kill the dog within a week.



I was hearing somebody talking on NPR today driving to town about new initiatives cities are looking at for pulling the different parts of the urban community together to search for innovative ways to get the economic bloodstream flowing again after lockstep shutting it down by the collective republican party, people who want to shut down We The People because there's too many niggers that might benefit. The republican party is the present day manifestation of the Ku Klux Klan. Like the Mob in the big cities invested in legitimate corporations and disappeared as the Mob. The Klan disappeared as the horseback riding Kaspar the sinister ghost and became legally legitimate with their own political party. It may be the best for the USA to have a black president now, in this phase of the Reagan Revolution. The republicans are going apeshit like hornets after squirting hornet spray into the nest hole, buzzing up a storm. They all have an African American, the real deal, OVER them, excepting the puppeteers pulling his strings and their strings too. Washington DC is on hold with the republican shut down of American life, all but military, shutting down the economy on us, cutting off our blood flow. The state governments are under siege by republican chicanery like national government. The cities are evidently looking at ways to make it without state or national government. The republicans have become such a serious problem in their ongoing efforts to create police state, which they've done systematically unto completion, nullifying the Constitution before our eyes and laughing as we predictably acquiesced. It is the waves of our acquiescence they ride.



I was heartened to hear that some cities are starting to pull together as big communities looking for possibilities for becoming self-sustaining, looking to the good for all concerned. Breaking free from greed thinking. This being a direct consequence of the republican shut down of government for all but military and police, it could be a good thing. It looks like the republican party is on the highway to self-destruction. The arrogance toward the people by the North Carolina legislature right now is classic. This is republicanism at it's most cut loose. It's a Fuck All Y'All attitude to the American people, way beyond a thumb to nose gesture; it's spoken by action, not words. We hear it and see it on the news and acquiesce daily. It's so what we do automatically we don't even notice. It's our way of playing possum. Just flop over and sleep for awhile. When they shredded the Constitution, I scratched my head and acquiesced. What can I do? I can write this that you're reading now, but it doesn't do anything other than give me a chance to explore my own thinking on the matter, which is why I write these daily notations. A few who see it the same way will read it. A few will read it and hate it. I think republicans know better by now than to dip into this well. It doesn't have sugar in it. I like this spontaneous description of self, no sugar in it, the way I like tea and coffee. I'd guess everybody who knows me would agree with that. It would be a fun subject to explore on the psycho-therapist's couch.

 
 
 
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Wednesday, July 24, 2013

A POEM BY TJ WORTHINGTON

 
 
             PARROT SEES THE UNIVERSE


             Finger toes grip the cage's wire,

             a pink small fist closes

             on the next rung to keep

             the body's weight in place.

             The other foot loosens;
 \
                   letting go, stretches to take

             the next wire, careful, feels

             the move to make it right,

             selects the correct moment.

             Wings straight back, pulling

             with the stronger bill,

             green feathered head

             pushes through the roof bars,

             black intelligent eyes

             feel a shock in their roots.



                       ---TJ Worthington


 
 
 
 
 
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Tuesday, July 23, 2013

MR FANTASY

morris graves


It has been rest time over the last 3 weeks. There were three weeks that I went all the time, this place, that place, appointments. Then I shut down. Stayed in bed mostly until I woke up on the 4th morning feeling like doing something. I learned that I can't go like in the past. That's ok. I remind myself daily that my initial purpose moving to the mountains was to live with solitude on a dirt road. The solitude part took several years to get to. I'm wondering if I'm even ready yet. Evidently I'm not. I fell under a temporary spell of wanting to accomplish much before I die. That's silly thinking and it took me to exhaustion. And I know better. I feel a longing now for solitude. I find I need presence of others too. I take care of the social at the coffee shop and with friends I feel close to as family, and Woodlawn on Friday nights. This past weekend was Sparta fiddlers convention, Woodlawn, and Blue Ridge Music Center. I wanted to go to all of them. Went to none. In every case, I made the decision to stay at home. Did not want to go anyplace. I want to go less and less.

morris graves


At this time, being alone is refreshing. The phone almost never rings. I think "the universe" has been telling me to pull back, pull more within, rely more on intuition, pay less attention to what is going on out in the world of money. It would be easy but for the republicans who are such humorists now, Boner saying the republican congress needs to be judged by laws it has repealed. None. He is the cancer within. I am finding that the more time I spend resting and staying at home, the more creative I catch myself becoming. On the run with distractions inhibits creative thinking. Tomorrow is a matter of go all day long. Will have a nap upon arriving home. And now some of the latest astronomical discoveries involve a notion the universe may be a brain. Why not? I saw where a mote of dust is half way between the size of an atom and the earth. It struck me that the size of an atom is the very definition of tiny. It can't even be said to have a size. It must take beyond a trillion atoms to make a fingernail, or maybe just the dirt beneath the fingernail. Maybe it's a brazillion. I get out in the world of others and it's you needta, you gotta, you oughta, you should. Two-thirds of a century of television and conversation has become commercials. Sometimes I feel like I'm on tv.

morris graves


A recent decision that emerged from the subconscious, muscled conscious mind out of the way, and took over, against the will of conscious mind, made a big change. But it was so overwhelming I felt compelled to go with it. Sometimes I feel sorrow over it. Most of the time I feel it was the right decision. I felt cornered as a fantasy in somebody else's mind. Locked in the attic. I didn't know how to cut off the fantasy with words. I've pleaded for years stay out of my face and talk English, I don't understand bar slang. It means totally nothing. I say stay out of my face, and next thing he's in my face. "I'm not in yer face!" and an argument follows. Arguments, arguments. This is what I'm glad to see gone, the demands that I do what I'm not going to do, like vote for Ron Paul, the most nothing of all the politicians. Watch television, it's good. Getting old. Can't live with denial. Enough of denial. If I can't stand being bullshitted to and saying stop it doesn't change anything, what's left to do? Which comes first? Honoring myself in the  phase of life I'm in right now, living where I live, how I live by my own intent, not an accident of can't keep a job? My life is not in somebody else's head three thousand miles away, a projection of somebody else's self onto a fantasy with my name. Regarded otherwise in a coma, animated by somebody else's psychological needs that have nothing to do with me. That, or no more instructions on what I have to do to be more like the fantasy with my name.

morris graves


I chose no more instructions. It is a hard decision when somebody connects himself or herself to you like with octopus suction cups, and it's a one-way relationship. The fantasy of who I am / what I am is about 1% me and 99% the dreamer. The 1% that is me is my name. The adoration is not of me, but of a fantasy with my name. I wouldn't even like this fantasy with my name were we to meet. It's ok. It's pretty much how we know other people, fantasies in our minds. We take tiny slices of observation and generalize from there. I can't help but feel like it was time to break out of that fantasy the only way I knew to stop it so it will never start up again. He provoked an eruption from my dark side that I let happen, because it felt necessary. The need broke through the resistance of denial. It came from a lot of years of the same pushy ego, shutting me down within, putting me on hold while I listen to what somebody's ego thinks impresses me. Somebody who knows me better than I know myself, though yet to show evidence of it. As time has gone by, I feel better about the decision, primarily because I don't believe I was doing anything from my side but enabling a fantasy by allowing it. It came to the place I felt cornered by the fantasy, and I come out of corners. When I was younger I didn't know how, but have learned how since then. It's easy. You just do it. Whatever it takes is what you do. Was it ego? Was it not ego? Of course it was ego. Everything is ego. Ego is not even an issue.  

morris graves
 
 
 
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Monday, July 22, 2013

AFTER VIETNAM

robert rauschenberg
 

Vietnam has been an enigma in my lifetime. The communist hysteria, the domino theory, all of it propaganda attempting to make popular a war with the intent of keeping the American economy going, an economy created by the boom of WW2. The Cold War kept economy going pretty good with "defense" contracts, making jets that cost multiple millions unto billions. Vietnam came along to keep economy going. It started with a presidential lie on television to the American people, LBJ, one of the great liars of history. He showed me nothing at all where integrity as a man was concerned. His integrity was to the rich only. His only legacy for me is liar, like Reagan and W Bush. Can't leave out Nixon. I don't understand the present urgency of the right wing being in control. I do not know of a time in my lifetime the right wing was not in control. I found the English even further to the right than USA. I found them in 1972 going through the political agony of adopting a health care system that would benefit working people, everybody, even the poor. No way. That's socialism. How will people have incentive to go to medical school to work in socialism? It was the same as here now, only English style instead of American style. They like their healthcare system now and wouldn't have it back the old way.


robert rauschenberg
 


The propaganda in the time of Vietnam had been anti-communist for at least a decade to the point that even today, half a century later, communism is a loaded word. It could make a fun short documentary film to interview different kinds of people asking them questions about communism and hearing all the different explanations of why communism is evil. Evil is where many of the answers would start. We have not had communism yet. It comes after capitalism. Soviet Union's communism I interpreted militarist socialism. And we do militarist capitalism, fascism. This is what I mean by the right wing control in America is not new. I recall fundamentalist preacher harping about communism, atheism, evil, lake of fire forever and ever, eternal agony for being born into one economic system instead of another. It never made a lick of sense to me. In my childhood I wondered in bed at night how it could be that a kid my age born someplace behind the iron curtain was doomed to hell just by where he was born. I thought of the people in the very remotest parts of the world that never saw a Bible or heard of Jesus. It failed to make sense to me that God, omniscient, the knower of our hearts, made such a crazy rule that anybody dies never having opportunity to get saved automatically goes to hell, mandatory sentencing.

robert rauschenberg

Vietnam brought out love-it-or-leave-it. A lot of people left it. It was also the time of Are you a boy or are you a girl? With yer long blond hair you look like a girl. American establishment is not kind to outsiders. It was the time of white college students discovering marijuana realizing they wanted to live their lives, not go kill gooks and get killed too. The San Francisco sound took pop music to a new level. We had a whole generation of the college age white kids divided over Vietnam. The majority was for it. We saw photographs of demonstrations on big campuses. It looked like a lot of people, but the percentage was low. Most of the people in college in that time did not want to endanger the possibility of a career because their picture might appear in the paper with a demonstration against the war. Too, if a corporation were in somebody's sights, that person is careful not to commit to any cause or controversial point of view. Stay away from the controversial. We knew that in the corporate world, the world we were expected to look to for good-paying jobs, disobedience was not held a virtue. Gotta be squeaky clean to be a corporate somebody. I realized young that I would never succeed in this world.

robert rauschenberg

I will not give up my humanity, no matter how self-defeating it may be, to make big money and have big things. I hear Peggy Lee, If that's all there is, my friend, let's keep on dancing. I won't give up my inalienable basic human rights for a job, position or status. I learned early on that the higher I go on the money ladder the farther away I go from my humanity. No, it doesn't have to be that way. It is not ultimately true that war is a force that gives us meaning, either. But in this world, war is a force that gives us meaning. In the time of Vietnam, to commit to being against the war was the same as being against America to everybody who was not a protester. The protesters knew they were acting out of patriotism. They were saying don't send us to a disastrous war that is about big money for some big corporations at our expense, to end up homeless begging on intersections of American cities to get through the days in our later years, Vietnam vet statistics. I had the personal good fortune to slip under the wire, did the limbo, got out of Navy just in time. The ship's next destination was Vietnam. What a joy in my heart it was to leave that Navy base the last time. Then I watched Vietnam happen on the news and watched a great big split happen in America, a major gap between the older people and the younger people. It seemed that the leftover belief systems since WW2 were laid to rest with Vietnam. It kind of summed up what went before, tied up the loose ends and got on with what was next, destabilizing Latin America

robert rauschenberg
 
 
 
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Sunday, July 21, 2013

0DD TIMES


alex katz


This afternoon it came to me that maybe what makes politics seem so odd now is that it always has been odd, it's just that now politics is front and center daily serial entertainment. Before internet what happened in the background was unknown. Now, the background is the foreground. We see now that what we suspected before, turned out to be so. Only now, whatever we see is too late. It's history. It's engaged. We're living it. It is said that the transition from this form of economy to the next one will only be by revolution if it does not happen by legislation. In this time, the republicans are only allowing laws having to do with the private parts of women. Maybe somebody needs to show these people some porn sites on the internet. I hear Jimi Hendrix in my head saying, "They can't get no relief." If they didn't alienate their wives with unconscious assholeness, their wives might not have so many headaches.


donald roller wilson


I wonder what the Texas legislators did when they were in high school crossing the border with their buddies to find some Mexican whores. I'd guess they laid on the bed beside their fallen women, stiff as a post, and not their wieners, unable to move, paralyzed by the preacher's voice in their heads condemning them to hell for committing fornication. Naughty boys! Bad! I doubt the Mexican whores hate it too much when they get one of those guys who pays and just lays there feeling guilty. These men are post-Sixties people. They grew up in a time of sexual liberation. They didn't have to cross the border. I thought that old hung-up thing about sex went away after the Sixties. Maybe it only happened for people who went through the Sixties. Of course, in that time perhaps a majority of the people did not get their sexuality liberated while the freeing up was going on. Our politicians, like Al Gore, live their lives squeaky clean as they can without exploding. When they explode, it's often a scandal. They end up Ken dolls, no personality, a toy you can project a personality onto, your own, and he becomes your friend. And their wives at big political gatherings seen on tv look like Barbies with tv anchorlady hairdos. I'd guess their hair is so fixed in place it would not move riding on the back of a rice rocket. They offer themselves as puppets to the rich at country clubs, vowing to do as they're told.


max ernst


Can you beat that for a two-dimensional portrait of people I know nothing about? You'd think I was writing a bad novel about a Central American country by somebody living in Detroit who'd never been south of the border. I'm going by public appearances as seen on tv. In other words, illusion within illusion interpreted in illusion, like one of those heat mirages we see on the highway in summer, waves of heat rising from the pavement in the near distance. Sometimes when I confess to liking action movies, some in particular like, Syriana, that concern the CIA, I get lectured that the movie doesn't show the Company anything like what it really is. How could it be otherwise? Written by a script writer who lives in Los Angeles and makes his living writing screenplays for Hollywood. His knowledge comes from reading, movies and tv. It's fiction. Duh. A fictional story told by a director with a film crew, producers wanting the ultimate payback, making it to hold the interest of people with equivalent of fourth grade knowledge, explosions and gunfire like songs in a musical. I never imagined the CIA played to box-office. Jean Claude van Damme was a ballet dancer before he started being a kick-boxing martial arts actor. Martial arts fights in movies are choreographed. They are dances. Like when I watch a Daffy Duck cartoon, it's not because I believe ducks speak English.


alex katz


Something else about the seeming craziness of this time is that we have a corporate government now run by hierarchy, not democracy, and we're being manipulated by propaganda and bullshit round the clock. When we get bullshit presented daily as news, it goes back to the post-Kennedy assassination disinformation campaign that has reached the place half the people in the country have a belief system based in the false. The other half is right behind them. Then there is the rise of the youth. Occupy has been suppressed so they'll never do massive demonstrations in USA again. They'll come up with something else. The suppression of Occupy so quietly, so behind the scenes, gives me evidence of too sophisticated a police state. I can't help but think it seems like a crazy time because it is a crazy time. The time of the Patriot Act. It's crazier than a junebug inside a lampshade. Every day I thank God in one way or another for making me somebody from the very beginning unable to take the path of position and money. I got my education for my personal benefit, ultimately my spiritual benefit, not corporate job training. The people living the fantasy driven by ambition to get ahead learn to thrive in an unreal world, the world we have to learn to go through in order to get ahead. For somebody who doesn't accept that God is, I'll say it's consciousness I'm extending my gratitude to, for the opportunity to live surrounded by trees. The trees are sane.


alex katz
 
 
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Saturday, July 20, 2013

AFTER HEARING A CHRIS HEDGES INTERVIEW


yves tanguy


Every day for the last weeks I see various respected establishment names, like Jimmy Carter, the latest one, saying out in the open our democracy is gone; the corporate takeover of our government has deleted democracy. People like Gore Vidal, Chris Hedges and Noam Chomsky have been saying it for some time. By the time establishment people are saying it, it's a done deal and has been for a while. I saw an eighteen minute interview with Chris Hedges where he spread out today's political / economic world, explaining the corporate takeover citing evidence of what is happening as he went. The man has a mind to be reckoned with. I like reading his essays. His writing has clarity and is trimmed down to only the necessary words, stylistic frills absent. It's the same with his thinking and speaking. Maybe it could be said he is frugal in his use of language.

yves tanguy


Listening to Hedges talk is music. I follow where he goes rationally. He has no hysteria about him. His straight-faced delivery says he has seen the horror. He can neither recoil nor laugh. When it's funny, it is, but it's not. His recent book, the Death of the Liberal Class, is not what you might think he means by liberal. What we call liberal now is adherence to codes of social behavior that distinguish oneself separate from the working class. The sense of what I picked up that he was saying, America used to have a left wing. It's gone. What we now call the left, liberal, is the left extreme of the right wing, the part of the right closest to the center. The possibility of hope he sees is for more massive demonstrations, not that they do any good for their stated purposes, but they keep government apprehensive of the people. He said the ideal is, like in France, that government be afraid of the people. The Occupy movement has evidently been shut down by police state that is using the mass arrests for practice, for training, foreseeing a surge of massive resistance in the near future.

yves tanguy


At the rate our basic rights are eroding, Obama using the Patriot Act for a guide, tells me nobody in our government is working consciously to the benefit of we the people, unless it might be Elizabeth Warren, unless she turns out to be just a performance. She's somebody who could end up dead in a private plane crash with no indication in the black box of what went wrong. If a run for the presidency is in her future, she will change as Obama has changed. She will be an ongoing target of the republicans, too much of her attention needing to be focused on strategies to nullify republican fake assaults. The republican half of our population is a venal bunch of people come out of the background into the foreground making noise, threats, misspellings on signs. I see in our national and state governments a venality that really does represent the wide stripe that runs through the American people of interest in money only, the attitude of I-want-mine. The corporate CEOs see us not even pawns. I, like Bob Dylan, don't want to be a pawn in their game. I want no part of it.

yves tanguy


Driving by a city on interstate, or driving through a city, I gawk at skyscraper architecture, something like walking through a long room full of Mark Rothko canvases or Richard Serra steel works, Carl Andre's blocks of wood, bricks arranged on the floor. I see an adventurous skyscraper a beautiful thing, like a piece of public art, like a bronze sculpture of Gandhi walking in a public park. I've seen some Giacometti stickman sculptures in skyscraper context, and some Noguchi. They go well together. 20th century sculpture with 20th century architecture. The Reagan Revolution has put to rest what used to be called progress in America, the progress that built the beautiful towers in the cities. The Bank has taken our money to offshore banks that don't pay taxes. The Bank is bleeding us out. Hence the popularity of vampires in pop culture again, drained of our life blood, and zombies, the living dead. It's like we're alive, but cannot afford to do anything but stay home and watch tv. The center is not holding, unless the center is tv. Chris Hedges defined our situation a tinderbox on the verge of self-combusting. Anything could set it off. I'll watch it on live internet.

yves tanguy
 
 
 
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Friday, July 19, 2013

A POEM BY JAPANESE POET SAGA NOBUYUKI

Hiroshima memorial



          THE MYTH OF HIROSHIMA


What are they looking for,

running to the summit of lost time?

Hundreds of people vaporized instantly

are walking in mid-air.


     "We don't die."

     "We skipped over death in a flash and became spirits."

     "Give us a real, human death."


One man's shadow among hundreds is branded on stone steps.


     "Why am I imprisoned in stone?"

     "Where did my flesh go, separated from its shadow?"

     "What must I wait for?"


The 20th century myth is stamped with fire.

Who will free this shadow from the stone?



                              ---- Saga Nobuyuki  (1902-?)
                                     tr by kijima hajime



Hiroshima memorial
 
 
 
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