Archive for July, 2011

When they come. Again.

Sunday, July 17th, 2011

Remember the post World War II movies which demonized the Nazi bad guys, and glorified (rightly so) the heroic actions of the few who stood up to the Nazi’s, running underground resistance groups and providing escape routes to those who were ‘wanted’ for ‘relocation’? I remember them. I watched from the comfort of my unchallenged 1960’s adolescence, and imagined myself—against all odds—doing the right thing in the midst of grave threats and terror from evil authoritarians all around me. It was clear to me then what would have been the right thing to do during the late 1930’s in Nazi Germany, and I hoped that I would have had the courage to do the right thing had I actually been there. I actually lamented the dullness of my life when I was eight, and how, from that vantage point, I could see no such heroic challenge visible anywhere in my future.

What a failure of imagination!

We are there, now. Except that the current economic meltdown is not being caused by a draconian Versailles Treaty, which is what bankrupted Germany and impoverished her people after WWI and set the stage for the birth and subsequent domination of Hitler’s Third Reich. The significant difference is that ours is an ad hoc economic meltdown, conceived, implemented, and executed solely for the purpose of forcing otherwise unwilling free men and women to subvert their common sense and goodwill to the demonic state in exchange for a pittance of relief from the state’s threats of overwhelming harassment, illegal imprisonment, certain impoverishment, and inevitable death only after unfathomable suffering. Free speech will soon be illegal, and is largely so now. Due process is already severely marginalized in the zeal for imposing extra-judicial consequences for activities which heretofore have never been illegal, like owning a gun, having a baby, or refusing a vaccination.

When they come and do what we know is wrong, we will look the other way again and again until there is nowhere else to look. And then, when we have no choice but to face the truth, it will be too late.

Seek out the wrongdoing now! Confront it before it confronts you. And never look the other way. Never. Do something oppositional—no matter how small—every time you see an injustice, especially when those injustices are perpetrated under color of authority. And after one encounter, the second confrontation is just as difficult, but much more effective. Every moment of standing against what is wrong empowers you, advances freedom, and uplifts the human condition to the benefit of us all, not to mention the power of your example inspiring others to do the same. Eventually, standing up for what is right becomes a thousand times more effective than the first time, and the sooner we get that first confrontation done, the earlier we achieve total effectiveness in resisting the abuse, oppression and tyranny that these injustices are designed to impose.

Morality is the final law, and in times like these our consciences can be our only guide. And these truths are self evident, that we are endowed with certain unalienable rights, that among these rights are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

We are the new Greatest Generation, like our fathers and grandfathers in World War II, and the times we live in today presents us with the same great privilege they had—to save the World. Again.

No typing.

Saturday, July 16th, 2011

I have eleven typewriters.  

That’s not a brag; that fact is not in the least bit significant compared to some of the champions of typing-machine collectors.   And the eleven are not a particularly impressive selection of machines.   They are unremarkable for the most part, and are a representative slice of those machines which are currently most plentiful and reasonably available.   No achievement there.  

Having eleven machines scattered around my tiny apartment, several with neglected typing stopped in progress, does make me seem—at least to me—crazy.   I am not a writer (even though they are sometimes also crazy).   Despite my fond hopes that I am an undiscovered author, all evidence indicates a fanciful fiction of myself as a writer.   Commonly called a delusion.   Delusions are clinically pathological, but this is not a clinical delusion.   This delusion is benign, which may be its worst feature.   Its lack of any damaging effect enables me to perpetuate it, forever.   A never-ending diversion.   Perfect when you have forgotten long ago what you are avoiding.

This fiction of being a writer is supported in many ways:

  • This haltingly updated blog, and its many incarnations since the 90’s;
  • two periodical articles I wrote and published, also in the 90’s;
  • lots of struggling, imprecise prose hewn out of raw ego by wickedly imposed suffering in front of a typewriter and mercilessly whacked onto paper;
  • and of course my mind, racing about desperately trying to escape something, like a tiny mouse trapped, together with a Maine Coon cat, in a cage.

But mine is a particularly incompetent Maine Coon cat.   She never seems able to catch the mouse, and never puts this shrieking, panicky mind out of its misery.  

So instead, I am touching my computer’s feint and inarticulate keys and not pounding the vigorous and decisive keys on any of the writing machines gathered ’round me.   And much to the same effect—diversion from the mortal fear trapped within me.   Only, at the computer keyboard, there is no satisfying ‘thwack’ with each character.  

I ask myself, isn’t this merely a petulant external display of some perceived suffering within?   And, if that is so, what distinguishes it from authentic art?   What is the difference between my masterfully executed delusion of writing, and any other more laudable creativity?   Has not the smelly, homeless person, begging on the street, achieved a virtuosity in the expression of suffering (or even just in the expression of self-pity, depending on your interpretation)?   Has he not conjured from the very substance of his life an expression of the same mortal terror held within?

That sort of failure to obtain some external media—like clay, or marble, or oil on canvas—and transform it in the act of expression is, I guess, just laziness in art.   But then I would never disagree that I am just a lazy would-be writer, content to let some innate flair for writing languish unattenuated and undeveloped, that lack of artistic achievement an artistic expression in itself.  

Zephyr on the train.

Friday, July 15th, 2011

Just the raw typecast from the train. Will add some notes later. But now, late for work…

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When I got on the train, I couldn’t keep my eyes open. It’s not that I slept–I couldn’t sleep. It’s just that I couldn’t move, or think, or type. Such is the effect of a McDonald’s lunch.

Little Zephyr

Friday, July 15th, 2011

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