Tuesday, May 31, 2011

WWH~~ Wake'N'Bake 101: Falsies


Call Me "Dr.Skeptical": I frankly don't think the country's awash in an epidemic of false rape complaints.

Not in a macho-fantasy, patriarchal, hyper-materialistic, militaristic/imperialistic culture like this one wherin so much of the putative "entertainment" treads so closely upon a kind of non-erotic, but still prurient pornography of murderous fantasy about violent conquest. Did you know there is a video game in which you can re-enact the Columbine massacre and try to beat the killers' scores? In such a culture, often enough, rape is regarded as a prerogative of the victor. Yet apparently there is such a "cause," sponsored by "The Innocence Project of Minnesota." Innocent men are being harrassed, their lives ruined, by lying women claiming consensual sex was, instead, forced.

I think EVERY man knows a man or men who have "overpowered" the resistance of women, or "taken advantage" of them. I knew guys, especially in the service, who bragged about it, constantly. It was like they couldn't get laid by a woman who wasn't drunk. "Rape" fantasies are some of the top-rated porn shows.

The chamber-maid who busted "the KAHN!" was empowered to turn this 60-year-old, serial-fucker in because her UNION had a clause in the contract with the hotel that protected her from reprisal if she were assaulted by a guest and reported it. (I said at the time I heard about it, that it told something about the state of the Empire when the head of the IMF was reduced to raping the Third World one woman at a time.)

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This is Angel. She intervened when a bad guy attacked a Florida woman and her kid, and drove the bad guy off. Probably prevented a serious crime. The woman claims she'd never seen the dog before. This dog LOVES people.

But if she's in the room, when the cops kick in your door--which the SCROTUS last week, 8-1 fer chrissake, just made it easier for 'em to do, without a warrant, just on the aroma of weed (in poor housing porjects, anyway), the first thing the fucking cops will do is kill her (google it; it happens all the time).

I co-habitate with a Pit bull, a LARGE (80-lb), tawny-and-white, golden-eyed, pink-nosed, smiling, attentive, loving, friendly-but-protective chap named Budreaux, who is the very epitome of a "goddam good damn dog." I am a relentless breed-advocate, pit-bull-myth buster, and breed-law opponent. Do not slander or calumnize the American Staffordshire, American Pit, or any mastiff-derived dogs. They were actually bred to love (their) people.

It makes sense: you'd want eighty (plus)-pound dogs with coiled-springs in their legs, long teeth, and massive gripping power in their jaws to LIKE their people. You can train a pit (mastiff) breed to attack and/or aggress people. But you don't wanna live with the result of the extent to which you hafta abuse 'em to accomplish that.

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Monday, May 30, 2011

WWH~~ Wake'N'Bake 101: In Memoriam

Well to remember that we are not memorializing sleep-number beds or appliances, and barbeque sets...

Warriors are often the most observant poets:
The Death of the Ball Turret Gunner

From my mother's sleep I fell into the State,
And I hunched in its belly till my wet fur froze.
Six miles from earth, loosed from its dream of life,
I woke to black flak and the nightmare fighters.
When I died they washed me out of the turret with a hose.
~~ Randall Jarell, 1945

The Anxious Dead

O guns, fall silent till the dead men hear
Above their heads the legions pressing on:
(These fought their fight in time of bitter fear,
And died not knowing how the day had gone.)

O flashing muzzles, pause, and let them see
The coming dawn that streaks the sky afar;
Then let your mighty chorus witness be
To them, and Caesar, that we still make war.

Tell them, O guns, that we have heard their call,
That we have sworn, and will not turn aside,
That we will onward till we win or fall,
That we will keep the faith for which they died.

Bid them be patient, and some day, anon,
They shall feel earth enwrapt in silence deep;
Shall greet, in wonderment, the quiet dawn,
And in content may turn them to their sleep.
~~Capt. John McCrea (KIA, 1918)

"The Man He Killed"

"Had he and I but met
By some old ancient inn,
We should have sat us down to wet
Right many a nipperkin!

"But ranged as infantry,
And staring face to face,
I shot at him and he at me,
And killed him in his place.

"I shot him dead because –
Because he was my foe,
Just so – my foe of course he was;
That's clear enough; although

"He thought he'd 'list perhaps,
Off-hand like – just as I –
Was out of work – had sold his traps –
No other reason why.

"Yes; quaint and curious war is!
You shoot a fellow down
You'd treat if met where any bar is,
Or help to half-a-crown."
~~ Thomas Hardy (1909)
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This is a nice palate-cleanser if you've already grown a weary of the cloying, jingoistic, maudlin, mindless 'patriotism' inundating you amid the even greater flood of sleep-number bed and appliance ads "celebrating" this solemn day:

The "Pledge" (I knew you'd want it; for pedagogical purposes):
"I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America. Thank you very very much for letting us little kids live here. It really really was nice of you. You didn't have to do it. And it's really not creepy to have little kids mindlessly recite this anthem every day and pledge their life to a government before they're old enough to really think about what they're saying. This is not a form of brainwashing. This is not a form of brainwashing. This is not a form of brainwashing. This is really the greatest country in the whole world. All the other countries suck. And if this country ever goes to war, as it's often wont to do, I promise to help go and kill all the other countries' kids. God bless Johnson and Johnson. God bless GE. God bless Citigroup. Amen.
Dollars to donut-holes the precocious patriots won't hear about this next story until they're safely out of school. I wonder how many of you have heard of it. It's a true story:
WWH~~ Wake'N'Bake 101: In Memoriam

Saturday, May 28, 2011

WWH~~ Wake'N'Bake 101: CorpoRats

Dr Woody was reminded the other day of Robber-Baron Jay Gould bragging that he could hire half the working class to kill the other half. That doesn't seem so absurd, anymore, when the it appears now that he was predicting the modus operandi of the Kochs, et al, directing the polyester proles of the restless rank-and-file which are the "Tea Party" base to arise and attack the common good.

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There is an understandable tendency to refrain from thinking too critically about propositions with which one feels sympathetic, or which one may fundamentally agree. So this proposal for (yet ANOTHER) Constitutional Amendment, offered by Blue-dog Dim Donald Boren (of the oligarchic Oklahoma Borens) is attractive on the face of it.
(T)he proposed amendment to the Constitution would bar a candidate for the office of U.S. Senator from accepting contributions, funds and in-kind equivalents, from individuals who do not reside in the state the candidate seeks to represent. For candidates seeking the office of Representative, Delegate, or Resident Commissioner in the U.S. House of Representatives, the amendment would prohibit those same contributions from individuals who do not reside in the Congressional district the candidate seeks to
represent.
The proposal has gained some momentum, because it seems to "make sense." And this is where healthy SKEPTICISM, in the form of close textual analysis, crops up. What it says seems specific enough, but what it doesn't say is more instructive, I think.

It doesn't say:

1) Anything about corporations, or
2) Anything about PACs, or
3) About contributions from national Parties, or
4) PACs from other politicians, or
5) Place any limitations on individual gifts, or
6) Their sources.
This is one of those "kabuki" issues. It's passage would prevent NOTHING, and would ("paradoxically!") make buying representation even easier. There is nothing to prevent employees of larger, national/international corporations from receiving gratuities from the "home office" to contribute to candidates/causes favored by the folks back at Corporat, is there?

Given the endless and relentless telos of the CorpoRats to finally and irremediably undermine the basis of the "sovereignty of the People," why is there any reason to believe that such measures conceal more than they purport to reveal?

BE SKEPTICAL, Friendz! Take NOTHING at face value that emanates from the CorpoRats' maw, or their toadies', lickspittles' and boot-licks' like Boren. I guarantee you the Koch brothers own at LEAST a 50% stake in David Boren. You cannot go ANYWHERE in Oklahoma without seeing their spoor...

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Friday, May 27, 2011

WWH ~~ Wake'N'Bake 101: Hard

EXCEPTIONAL: In the last 10 years, the Executive department of the US Gummint has arrogated unto itself an unprecedented number of 'powers' it had hitherto been forbidden the exercise of, either by convention or by fiat. Certain things "we" simply didn't do. "We" were "exceptional," we were "better than that." (That's presidents from BOTH so-called "parties," in case you lost count (so EASY to do, innit? But I digress). Well, nowadays, we do the following:
1.Order assassinations of
a) foreign citizens of any nationality, and
b) US citizens, at home or abroad
2. Initiate wars of aggression/expedience;
3. Operate secret, off-shore, military tribunals outside Constitutional safeguards and civilian supervision;
4. Conduct torture on
a. civilians in combat zones and in 'detention.', and
b. 'enemy' combatants, both in the field and behind the lines (a completely spurious designation, btw)
5. Enforce indefinite detention without due process, and absent conviction;
6. Authorize searches/seizures of private records without warrant;
7. Reject the rule of habeas corpus;
8. Ignore, when inconvenient, the extant domestic, legal restrictions on the exercise of military power, and
9. Expressly repudiate codices of international treaties forbidding prisoner abuse, etc.
That's just off the top of my head. Other presidents have engaged in the odd, opportunistic war: Polk's invasion of Mexico in 1846; the so-called Spanish-American War under McKinley--from April to August, 1898. It is of course probable that the majority of those powers had been exercised under previous Executives, but had been camouflaged or, if discovered, strenuously denied.

The difference, to me, which is revelatory upon consideration, is that apparently there no longer is any need for disingenuity; much the way that other totalitarian/authoritrian States eventually abandon pretense (and the expense) of the velvet glove and disclose the iron fist.

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Dr. Woody hopes you will all welcomes the SEVEN BILLIONTH PERSON to the 21st Century on Earth. The EIGHT BILLIONTH is due in about 10-12 years, TEN BILLIONTH by 2050 or so? It hit SIX BILLION, in Aug, '99, adding a billion in just under 12 years. It's arrant fucking madness.

It was Malthus who, now infamously, noticed that the correlation between population and food availability followed the same path, regardless of the species; that, field mouse or mule deer or human, when there was more food, the population grew. Thus, in Malthusian terms, at least, feeding the hungry only means making MORE of them.

The USA, with 5% world population, consumes about 25% of the world's non-renewable resources. To elevate the standard of living of every person on earth to that enjoyed by all but the utterly destitute USer would require the resources of no fewer than TWO MORE earth-identical planets.* If they were close enough to be of any conceivable use to us, we should be able to see 'em even in daylight, and guess what. I just went out and looked, and...they aren't there. Nope. Not even one. Sorry.

Remember all those folks who used to brag how we were so strong, we'd never succumb to that "race to the bottom" that some folks were warning about, 20-30 years ago? Our conceit was that "they needed us." And for a while they did. But our five percent of the population has grown relatively less prosperous as we were "tricked" into globalism and the race to the bottom--remember "the great sucking sound?" Listen close, you can still hear it. Now, there's more "prosperity"--Walmarts--elsewhere, and the prosperity of Murkins is relatively less important.

The anthem for our time: Wake'N'Bake, babies, this is pretty close to the real deal. Go down dancin'!

(*: Unsourced, may be apocryphal.)

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Thursday, May 26, 2011

WWH~~ Wake'N'Bake 101: Heroes

Dr. Woody grows increasingly uncomfortable with the reverential references to Roosevelt's and Eisenhower's famed, cautionary speeches: The "Simple Freedoms" speech by FDR, in '38 (when he STILL had SIX more years in office), in which he quite accurately predicts the dangers of the power of dominant, private capital:
The first truth is that the liberty of a democracy is not safe if the people tolerate the growth of private power to a point where it becomes stronger than their democratic State itself. That, in its essence, is fascism — ownership of government by an individual, by a group or by any other controlling private power.
The second truth is that the liberty of a democracy is not safe if its business system does not provide employment and produce and distribute goods in such a way as to sustain an acceptable standard of living. Both lessons hit home. Among us today a concentration of private power without equal in history is growing.
For Ike, it was the "military-industrial complex" speech--his "Farewell" address--wherein he named and specified the danger posed by the emergent power of the national security state as a direct threat to the actual, political security of the national enterprise:
"In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist.
"We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes. We should take nothing for granted. Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of the huge industrial and military machinery of defense with our peaceful methods and goals, so that security and liberty may prosper together."
FDR was in the middle of his second term, war was looming but still afar; he had just won the largest electoral margin in HISTORY. And he couldn't/wouldn't/ (crucially) DIDN'T do anything. He was, in fact, at that time, beginning to cave in to the money. Ike carefully only mentioned it on the way out the door; you can sense his golf-bag is in the corner, beckoning him impatiently.

If events of the intervening years have shown anything is is that it is impossible to be too cynical. We're entitled to ask: What were the effect of the announcements?

Both of 'em were in positions from which they COULD have done something to have prevented these dread and fell predictions when the had the power to do so. They were obviously well aware of the dangers long before they spoke of them; but they declined. Did their words CHANGE anything? Did ANYBODY act on the warnings, either when spoken or when repeated? Did our students, armed with these insights, band together to resist the Fascists? (Well, in fact, some of us DID do that, in the '60s and '70s of the last century, and we all recall how well that turned out. But I digress...)

But the thing that one misses from both is the sense of immediacy, of the hortatory, clamorous urgency that one might hope from the announcement of the immanence of such dire and imminent emergencies.

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Tuesday, May 24, 2011

WWH ~~ Wake'N'Bake 101: You're Spatial!

"What Is It?" (Waits a bit...)"Sand": Peter Donnely, the Sand-Dancer
INTELLIGENCE: Given the hour, Dr. Woody hopes that any visitors have the ten minutes you will be SORRY if you don't invest in this video.



"What Is It?" (Waits a bit...)"Sand": Peter Donnely, the Sand-Dancer

Background: Have you ever heard of Howard Gardner, the MIT psychologist who won a certain renown/notoriety about 30 years ago for proposing the "theory of multiple intelligences." I was an early and am still am an ardent convert to the then-the novel insight that "intelligence" was not a "singular" phenomenon; that in fact, there were more than a few "kinds of intelligence." He enumerated seven at first, and has grown the list to nine.

Indeed, Gardner's fundamental insight is that what had hitherto been called 'talents' were in fact the expressions of very different ways of being-in-the-world, in almost Heideggerian sense. From that one may adduce that the actual "meaning" of "Intelligence" is to be derived, not from one or two particular skills practiced in a vacuum such as "school," but from HOW one masters the environment epistemically.

That is, y/our "kind of intelligence" is a shorthand for "how we/you KNOW the world." There are many ways to do it. The original seven were: Spatial, Linguistic, Mathematico/deductive, Physico/kinesthetic, Musical, Inter-personal and Intra-personal. Gardner added "Naturalistic," and is said to be considering "Existential." They're pretty self-explanatory. Follow the link for more elaboration.

All of us possess ALL of these capabilities; only, to some, greater-or-lesser degree of competence within these several 'anthropological' predispositions and competences. For example, though: If you are or have ever known someone who was deeply self-identified as a musician, you are soon made aware that that person knows the world in a way in which, unless you are also a musician, you will NEVER know it. It's the same for athletes. REAL athletes know the world through sensors and sensations others among us can only imagine.

So, to the video: Witness "Spatial" intelligence, writ LARGE.

This is the best explication/exemplification of Gardner's "spatial" intelligence I've ever seen, or that I can imagine. This guy INHABITS "perspective." He totally and thoroughly KNOWS what he is doing, AND what doing it does. "Genius" is the only word for such complete mastery of the medium. It's what makes 'artists' artists, and the extent that they can convey how MUCH they inhabit it is a big factor on any index of their "art."

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Sunday, May 22, 2011

WWH~~ Wake'N'Bake 101: Treats

Ayn Rand's name and ravaged visage keep popping up like turds in the cultural punchbowl that they are. Rand is merely the contemporary configuration of the template for the eternal right-wing/conservative-bourgeois imperative to justify selfishness and rationalize the oppression by the powerful of the powerless. Rand unfailingly delivers to any literary or philosophical enterprise the same delicacy of sentiment and sensibility in her prose which coprophagy bestows on cuisine.

She is epistemically part and parcel with the ancient, cherished, obvious delusional doctrine of the "elect," that wealth directly and perfectly correlates with "virtue." It's perpetual appeal and readership by (actual, or comparative) 15-year-old White boys is thereby guaranteed.

My most persistent memory of the one time I read Atlas Shrugged, at about age 13 or 14, was of a regular boner accompanying ardent descriptions of throbbing, gleaming, pulsing locomotives ploughing ahead, irresistibly, relentlessly, surging into and through steaming, convulsive tunnels....

Whew, I need ANOTHER shower...

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Unsurprisingly to anyone, Dr. Woody agrees: Medicare for ALL would be A WONDERFUL thing, if--big word, that: IF--anybody in or near power actually planned or wanted to actually provide actual health care for USers.

But they don't. They--the Owners, bosses, etc--don't give a runny bucket of snot about you or your health or that of your family. Only the money you represent.

That's right: The Owners and their parasitic toadies and scurrying mininions want average USers to die too poor to pass on any inheritance. The bastards WANT USers to die wholly and totally indebted to the Health Insurance Parasites, doctors and hospitals, so they can plunder the pitiful estates, scoop up any assets, and prevent any possible escape by the heirs from the toils of indenture to the owners and bosses.

It's working like a charm.

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A PARABLE: A Mage in the service of an Emir carelessly let himself be apprehended in flagrante in the ruler's hareem. He was hailed before the Emir forthwith, and immediately pronounced a sentence of death. Then, relenting a bit, as befit a useful servant, the Emir asked his Mage how he would prefer to die.

In reply, the Mage--sensing an opening--beseeched: Lord, give me a year to live, and I shall teach your charger to talk! Should I fail, I will still be at your disposal, to do with a you please. But should I succeed, your Eminence will outshine all under the eye of Allah.

The Emir, a proud and boastful man, beguiled with his own beauty and importance, paused, and pondered...and then agreed. Satraps led the Mage away. At length, one of the Mage's assistants could contain himself no longer.

Sire, you cannot teach a horse to talk!

That, replied he, is as may be...but I have a year, and much may transpire. I may perish, despite. Or the horse may die. Or the Emir might die.

...Or the horse may talk.

Friday, May 20, 2011

WWH~~ Wake'N'Bake 101: The Rapture...

FLASH!: In case you missed it, "The Rapture" occurred last month, Apr 9, at 11 am, MDT. The reason nobody noticed is cuz nobody made the cut.

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Not-Douay/Rheims: The cover story on the latest # of Harper's magazine--out in print now, but not on-line for another month or so--is titled "King James, Revisited." Collected essays from a panel of poets, and assorted other literati, which repeat the accepted nostrums about the King James' version of the Christian "Bible," which turns 400 years old this year. I have only just begun it; I shall undoubtedly finish it sometime in the next month. But, frankly, except as an historical curiosity, I'm not much of an admirer of the Bible in any of its versions, other than the illustrated manuscripts of the late medieval/early renaissance.

For me, the so-called "Bible" is a compilation of myths and mores--a sort of Talmudic "Readers' Digest" or "Grimm's Fairy Tales"-- belonging to some related tribes of nomadic, long-gone, bronze-age herders (sheep, goats, camels) who nourished with it their cultural delusions of Imperial grandeur. It's usefulness as anything but an archeological artifact is extremely doubtful.

And, in addition, this melange of myth, custom and savagery has been appropriated, most strangely, by people who are almost the literal antitheses in world view, attitude, and morality, of the people about and for whom the original stories are told. Daniel Quinn, in his book "Ishmael" (Chapter 6? iirc) does a wondrous deconstruction of the provenance of the "biblical" narrative.

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Larry Faircloth, one of two Republican contenders for WVa gubernatorial nomination, has apologized to the West Virginia NAACP and anyone else he offended when he referred to President Barack Obama as “Sambo” and U.S. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi as a “bimbo.”

The racist, misogynous cretin, and former Berkeley County (W.Va) Delegate insisted Thursday he was only "joking."

If you were in Dr. Woody's political discourse class, he'd point to this as a "paradigm case" of the famous/notorious, and astonishingly common-place "Non-Apology Apology," popularized by inflagrante delectants on both sides of the aisle throughout the Clinton years.

In this case, when the GOPhuk-stick Faircloth apologizes to "anyone I may have offended," this does NOT include an apology for actually MAKING the wilfully stupid, hateful, derogatory, racist/sexist remarks he made and was recorded making. He couldn't deny it, but he wasn't really sorry he said it. He's sorry "if" you were offended, if you were.

This way the shitwhistle is NOT apologizing to those of his constituency who were NOT offended by the remark, because they were the intended audience for the slur in the first place and "got the joke." We KNOW this without any doubt because the fuckwad Faircloth said it was only meant as a "joke." To whom, one might ask, would it have been a "joke?" Clearly not those slurred by the reference to "Sambo."

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WWH~~ Wake'N'Bake 101: Dream-State

eDr. Woody doesn't wanna appear TOO melodramatic at so early an hour, but:

Courts in TWO jurisdictions, one 'local' (Indiana) and the other the Opus Dei SCROTUS, this week resumed the concerted, right-wing attacks by GOP judiciaries on the beleaguered and battered 4th Amendment, when they expanded the powers of police to enter a dwelling without a warrant. The liberties they strip from you now, in little ways and small increments, will ONLY be bought back with buckets of blood.

Do NOT be deceived.

Nothing EVER goes "back like it was." What they take from you, they intend to keep.

Tjis all started, as most of the corrosive poisons to now afflict the State did, with Ronald Reagan and the cabal of crooks, gunsels, and mountebanks who 'escorted' him into the WhiteHouse, administered his meds, and went to work for the Owners. Reagan is the futhermocker at whose now, blessedly decaying feet can be laid ALL the flaws and failing we now experience as a modern nation. He gave 'em eight years of unparalleled cover.

In the Reagan regime we find the initiation of ALL the ills that beset us now, not least of which is the carnage in Central Asia. That, and just about everything else, began with "his" (in quotes, because, as the nation's first sock-President, the name is his but the agents committed the crimes) treasonous treachery to get elected in the first place.

Most people have forgotten the never-refuted and never-convincingly-repudiated story of how GHWBush and Wm. Casey, of the CIA, went to Paris in September of 1980 to meet and negotiate with the Iranian Mullahs NOT to release the hostages until AFTER the election. In exchange, they promised (allegedly) to provide Iran weapons it needed to fight the bloody war against Saddam Hussein's Iraq, ALSO a US client-state by then. Such negotiation is EXPRESSLY forbidden by the Constitution. No one but the President may conduct binding negotiations for the USofA--even though the previously skeeviest fucker to occupy the office in the 20th century--Nixon had done the same thing, through Kissinger with the NViets in '68, to steal the war from Humphrey as an issue. Anyway, the subsequent network and mares' nest of corruption, complicity, and crime effectively sealed the fate of the USofA, forever afterwards.

Livin' the dream, innit?

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LTD, Part II: The buzz again is for a constitutional amendment to repeal corporate personhood, and reverse the Citizens United v. FEC decision of 2010.

"Really?" you say? "Who thinks that's the solution?"

The nation's lovable Jewish Uncle, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, for one. On TYT this week Cenk and the gang discussed it. And I gotta tell ya: Bernie's a sweetheart, but he's just blowing smoke. There is exactly as much chance that a Constitutional Amendment undoing Citizens United will pass and enacted as there is that platinum-plated pigs will circle the WhiteHouse shitting precious gems and pissing gasoline.

Ceteris paribus (the great lie of science): History militates against success for the project, even IF all else WERE equal, which it isn't. Since the first 10 Amendments were added --under protest-- in 1789, there have been only 16 more amendments, in 220 years, more or less. Except under extreme duress ("Reconstruction," for instance, or the VietNam war, which prompted the Amendment lowering the voting age), it is a long, and ultimately USUALLY futile endeavor.

Civics lesson: to "Amend the Constitution" requires several long, difficult steps. The last one enacted (26th) had been introduced in the 18TH CENTURY! For almost 40 years, the simple, utterly inoffensive ERA has languished for the lack of the final (2 or 3) State ratifications (three quarters of the States must individually ratify--that's 38/50). There are more than a DOZEN more candidates to be #27 awaiting the inertial swing that could propel them into limbo, too.

Plus, an Amendment has to go through Congress, as well as the States. Think what that means: There, as we all know, the CorpoRats--who ferociously oppose ANY restrictions on their ability to buy elections--would CERTAINLY obstruct passage by calling in markers from the all drones and trools they've installed there for this EXACT purpose over the past 30 years to do the thing they're paid to do, and KILL it. DOA.

Nagahapun...sorree.

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Thursday, May 19, 2011

WWH~~ Wake'N'Bake 101: Breakfast

Here's something to think about whilst conversing with "Snap, Crack, and Pop." In fact, it might curdle yer Cheerios; toss yer pop-tart (no, not her), hard-boil yer eggs, too:

Somewhere in the imaginary firmament of the economy, the average annual income for top money manipulators, hedge-fund operators, and high, financial criminals is around $270Million/yr, That means: every minute every one of them is merely ALIVE, every one of them collects almost $9 every fucking SECOND they're merely alive! Just for breathing, farting, fucking, driving, whathefuckever. No. Really. Here's the arithmetic: $270 MILLION per yr = $750 THOUSAND per day = $32,150 per hour = $520 per min = $8.70/ SECOND.

You cannot tell me, cannot show me, cannot prove to me that anybody is "worth" that kind of recompense for their time. The daily income of one of these titans of finance equals the MONTHLY income of many retirees and/or disabled people. You earn less for one hour swamping filthy cattle trucks in some fly-specked, shit-drenched truck stop in Oklahoma City, at noon, in August, at minimum wage--which is what it pays--than one of these skeevy fux in $15000 suits and $5000 shoes makes in one SECOND of "Elite work."

How's them cheerios tasting now, querida?

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The assembled foto-montage presents selected "stills" designed to capture one particularly alluring feature of the programs they advertize; to convey, in a single image, as much as possible about the television shows from which they are taken, to beguile future viewersand to pique future viewer interest.

With that in mind, I call your attention to the image in the upper right corner: "Free Agents."

Let's "unpack" it, as we semiologists say; lets describe what is present before our eyes.

First, where are we? To me, it looks like we're in a storeroom/stockroom of a business of some sort. There are filing cabinets and stacks of shelves. Functional. Nothing exceptional. About what you'd expwct if you'd ever been in or near one, and a lot of people have.

Now, look who's there? We notice a drably, conventionally dressed man idly leaning against a file cabinet who is looking absently away, his middle section partially obscured by an extended file-drawer.

Then, kneeling--almost splayed--at his feet, there is beautiful woman in a very short, bright dress, on her hands and knees, her legs spread as far as her skirt will allow, her ass elevated--for easy access and entry, we wonder. From this 'attitude', there is no other plausible implication other than that she is a sexual supplicant in front of and leaning towards her master who casually brandishes a penis the size and shape of a file-drawer. BIG dude. Size DOES matter. In the porno flics of which this is dutifully reminiscent, what comes next is fellatio.

So, what do you think is the central message that image attempts to convey to potential viewers?

I'm guessing this show is trying to rip off "The Office." I will admit I didn't watch "The Office" enough to know if there was this kind of strange, power-warped, s&m/dom fantasy-sex vibe of "business" going on there. But it seems to me that the teaser--and probably the show itself--is an effort to eroticize the cube-rat's often unbearable indenture, to suggest alternative benefits accruing with wage-slavery; but to commodify it, too, and narratize it, and make "work" --the scene of necessary drudgery, humiliation and disappointment appear (potentially) the scene of a hot, sexy fantasy...

...OR: It could ALSO be (they're not mutually exclusive; with imagery, nothing is)--and staying well and within the same understanding of the iconic references--a fierce, feminist critique of the roles imposed on women by the (still, overwhelmingly) patriarchal structures of most USer4 businesses. I somehow do NOT expect this to actually be the theme of the show, but it does open the stockroom for that kind of critique.

Monday, May 16, 2011

WWH~~ Wake’N'Bake 101: Accompaniment

GIGANTIC! Props to Carlos Santana who told a crowd in Georgia, Sunday night, where received an honor at the MLB Civil Rights Game: "I represent the human race,” the Mexican-born musical legend and culttural ambassador said. “The people of Arizona, the people of Atlanta, Georgia, you should be ashamed of yourselves.”

This drew boos from portions of Turner Field, apparently from folks who objected to Carlos' turning the celebration of Civil Rights at the ballpark into an occasion to discuss civil rights.

He was responding to a recently passed and signed law in Georgia, along with the virtually exact one enacted this year in Arizona "cracks down on illegal immigration by increasing enforcement powers and requiring many employers to check the immigration status of new hires." But Santana differed with the boilerplate:
(Santana) said the law is based on racism and economic anxiety.

“This is about fear, that people are going to steal my job,” Santana said of the law. “No we ain’t. You don’t clean toilets and clean sheets, stop shucking and jiving.”

Santana referenced his 1960s rock-n-roll background and said he is an artist unafraid to speak out.

"It’s an anti-American law. It’s a cruel law, actually," Santana said. "If you all remember what it was like here with Martin Luther King and the dogs and the hoses, it’s the same thing, only it’s high tech. So let’s change it.”
Viva, Carlos! Oye!@ Como VA!?!?!

Never go back to Georgia, Baby!


Set the people free!~

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What happens when the cops go from "Serve & Protect," to "Search & Destroy?"

The rights of the common citizen are swallowed up by the disciplinary technology of the State. Law hustles to keep up.

I thought the Indiana case would go on to SCROTUS, but the Kentucky case takes care of most of the relevant details. Cops can now enter ANY dwelling, occupancy, or establishment WITHOUT a warrant. No "ifs," "ands" or "buts" about it.

In the case upheld by the Supremes, cops pursuing a suspected meth dealer followed him into a building, but lost him. They then smelled marijuana smoke from an (only the WRONG) apartment, and busted down the door, apprehending some folks with weed paraphernalia, and such. But they did all this without a warrant.
It began when police in Lexington, Ky., were following a suspect who allegedly had sold crack cocaine to an informer and then walked into an apartment building. They did not see which apartment he entered, but when they smelled marijuana smoke come from one of the apartments, they wrongly assumed he had gone into that one. They pounded on the door and called "Police. Police. Police," and heard the sounds of people moving.

At this, the officers announced they were coming in, and they broke down the door. They found Hollis King smoking marijuana, and put him under arrest. They also found powder cocaine. King was convicted of drug trafficking and sentenced to 11 years in prison.
I remarked elsewhere yesterday that the Indiana Supreme Court decision was the kind of thing the US Opus Deists would welcome. But apparently they already had one on hand for the job...

I'm mute-struck by the 8-1 vote on the SCROTUS decision. Ginsberg was the ONLY dissent. BOTH Santa Sonia, of the Sentiments, and The KAGAN! voted with the State to permit cops to break into your home on the mere suspicion that you might be acting suspiciously? What the fuck? Yet another, if not the last, then among the last nails into the coffin of the 4th Amendment, with virtually the whole bill of Rights (except the 2nd Amendment) under well-financed, cynical attack, by agents of the oligarchs.

In case it somehow escaped you, these past 10 years: Osama wins!

WWH~~ Wake'N'Bake 101: Word Problems

Word Problem: (Who says you'll never use algebra?)

I was chatting via Zuckerberg's Folly with a chap in Ireland the other day and he remarked on the price of gasoline, which is quite high Home Aisles, approaching $9/gal. When I remarked on the recent increases here, he rather acidly compared the (much lower) rates we Yanks pay to the prices he pays there.

Scale: (Fyeieio) Which it is a matter of. The USer economy depends to a frightening extent upon the internal mobility of the people and goods. But this is a freaking BIG place. It is further from Albuquerque to Philadelphia than it is from Calais, France, to Moscow, Russia. It is further from Albuquerque to Denver or Phoenix, our nearest metropoli, than it is from Hamburg to Munich German--from one end of Germany to the other, i.e. It's further from Albuquerque to Houston than from from Land's End to John O'Groats, including the watery parts.

Algebra: Where I buy most of my fuel, today 86 Octane "regular" was $3.69; diesel was $4.04. Friday, "petrol" in Eire was One Euro, 50c/liter--diesel was E 1.46. There's 3.785 liters/gallon. The dollar traded Friday for about .71 Euros, so dollars/gallon in Ireland = (Roughly: 1.5 (bucks/Euro) times 1.5 (Euros/liter) x 3.785) = $8.52/gal. Right pricey. In my very economical car (Escort ZX-2: 40 mpg on the road), at Brit/Irish prices, it would cost me over $150 in fuel alone to travel to the nearest metropolis (Denver or Phoenix) and return.

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Just Us: Both Michael Moore, and Glenn Greenwald weighed in on the relevance of Nuremberg and Tokyo trials of WW II war criminals, relative to the "killing of bin Laden." Moore reveals himself as a naif with this piece. Greenwald investigates it as an example of "American exceptionalism."

Osama was kept "alive" (okay, we'll never "know") by the Busheviks because he was useful as a bogeyman. Anytime Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Rice, or any of the rest of that criminal enterprise needed to promote a new 'initiative' for their voluntary 'waqr' in Iraq, they'd trundle out Usama, either vicariously through 'terror alert' notices, or more directly, through the latest video. Remember the bin Laden vid that was released on the eve of their election theft in 2004?

ThePrez needed a "victoray" to pave the way for (cosmetically) removing some troops from Afghanistan this summer, as he "promised" the ('professional") left he would. He HAD to deliver, or risk their permanent disaffection, which St. Barry cannot afford. He's gotta be SEEN, at least, as wanting to end the wars, whatever the truth is. He was NEVER gonna get the 'victoray' in the field. That left bin Laden. B'bye, bin Laden (narratively, if not physically).

VICTORAY! End of story...

I agree w/Mike & Glenn that the treatment of bin Laden violates the 'principles' followed at Nuremberg and Tokyo.

But to me, all that that actually illustrates is how "thin" those principles were to begin with, and how cosmetic. They were merely stage dressing for the executions that the winners were gonna have, as the perquisites of their victory, no matter what.

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Energy Sources: Zuckerberg's Folly (aka "FaceBook") erupted with dismay and much gnashing of teeth (yestiddy/Sattiddy) at Prezz-O's announcement that his regime is going forward with plans to drill more in the deep ocean and in delicate ecosystems like the Arctic, no matter that this is 100% GUARANTEED to fuck-up SOMETIME and inflict ANOTHER environmental catastrophe upon us, the planet, and the whole of life on earth. But that's okay, if it saves corpoRat profits, one guesses.

Actually, imagining Prezz-O would decide any OTHER course would be/is delusional. DStop drilling? Are you ouddayer fuuking MIND?!?! FUGGEDDABODIT!!!

NOBODY is EVER gonna stop DRILLING (and spilling) as long as there is a ONE, SINGLE unamortized dollar of value in ALL the buildings, rigs, refineries, leases, ships, trucks and any other gear bought for the exploitation of petroleum.

Similarly, there will NEVER be any effort to universalize "Renewable" energy as long as the Owners do NOT have a way to charge the Users for otherwise free energy.

The biggest technological impediment is NOT the lack of a more efficient energy collector, it's the absence of a reliable METER, so the fuckers can BILL you for the energy they DON'T own.

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Sunday, May 15, 2011

WWH~~ Wake'N'Bake 101: Drama

Kabuki on the Potomac?



As you watch the video, below, it will be helpful if you think of the 'lady' puppet in the red kimono as "Sarah Palin" or "Michelle Bachmann"--or "Hillary Clinton," or "Madeleine Albright," or that gap-toothed horror, "Condaleeza Rice." The metaphor his informed my interpretation of the passing political parade to me with irrebuttable certainty and luminous clarity since about 1984, when I went back to school and started thinking "critically" again as a regular matter in a grad program in Journalism, at LSU, after almost a decade of being a carpenter and a surf bum.

Reagan was the first REALLY OBVIOUS "puppet" president; even the nominally "weak" presidents were actually pretty well qualified. Their "weak" reputations reflect the less dramatic character of events over which the yprsided. Ironically (oops, there I go again, forgetting irony's no longer possible, with BOTH ThePrez AND Kissinger owning a Nobel Peace Prize) George Bush was the guy with his fingers around ol' Ronnie's prostate, making the gestures by remote control, in much the same role Dick Cheney later played with the Chimperor Bush, after 2000.

As you watch, see if you don't see the metaphorical similarities. (The narration is in Japanese, I think, and I understood only a few scattered words, but mostly, for the purposes of illustration, you don't need to understand the explanation to get the amazing subtlety and skill of the manipulators. Which is the point, after all, nest paw?

(Thanks to my virtual pal Kthy McC. in El Paso for sending me the vid.)


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A link on Zuckerberg's Folly this (Friday) pm led to a story about how recent elections in India have brought more women into key, powerful posts in Gummint, including Congress Party president, Sonia Gandhi, and new governors in several States.

This prompted a small flurry of discussion, mainly men commenting, about whether, and how to bring MORE "womens' influence" to bear on the frightening difficulties "progress" has gotten us into, and to which I was stimulated to comment:
At this point, such a strategy would resemble nothing so much as the retreat of the former colonial powers from the disasters they'd imposed on indigenous folks on whom they'd imposed 'civilization,' leaving them to struggle with the wreckage and remains within (and with only the tools of) the failed system.

Hillary Clinton, especially Mad Maddy Albright (she of the "It's worth it that 500,000 Iraqi kids die, if we bring down Saddam!": fame) seem not to me much different from Jeff Sessions (e.g.) in dresses...
For a much fuller, much richer articulation of that sentiment, through the eyes of the colonized, there exists a slender volume (I doubt it's a hundred pages) called "A Small Place," by Jamaica Kincaid (1988), which I taught in virtually ALL my classes.

Kincaid presents a different and understandably jaundiced interpretation of the post-colonial practices we've normalized into near-invisibility through the institution of "tourism" (with its ineradicable tinges of colonialism). Drawing upon her intimate understandings of the insider/outsider tropes of three civilizations--Antiguan/Caribbean, British, and US--she expertly peels back the layers of self-delusion that insulate the traveler in the former colonies from the conditions that permit their leisure and ease, while unpacking the contradictions which such activities imply for "natives."

Yeah, it'll be on the test...

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Friday, May 13, 2011

WWH~~ Wake'N'Bake 101: Sober

>Rhetorical question of the day, #1: Can one have a sobering thought if one is sober, already, when having it?

I ask it because late Wednesday, mulling with the fates and muses, it occurred to me that what has become paralyzingly, terrifyingly apparent over these last 2-and-a-half years is that Prezz-O is probably--is almost CERTAINLY--as far to the "left" as the Owners are or will ever be willing to let ANY "president" govern.

Prezz-O IZ IT, the ultimate, the maximum, the cream, the Dream, the LIMIT, for "liberalism" at the top in this country now, and from now on. It's not gonna get any better than it is today.

No, really! There will NEVER be a president again in my lifetime surely (20 years, MAX) or likely yours either, who governs from principles any further to the Left than the inept, bare-bones, amoral 'pragmatism' of St. Barry, the Pale, right now, this moment. And that's a sobering thought.

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Rhetorical Question of the Day, #2: Why do the CorpoRat/SoCalledUnbiasedMedia (the "Corp/SCUM") focus so much attention on the GOPhux clown-pak, Palin, Gingrich, Huckabee, Paul, along with Trump--who's not declared and isn't going to--when they are, in the honest, cold light of reason and practice, no less "unelectable" than Dennis Kucenich orRalph Nader, whom the SCUM utterly, studiously, ignore?

WWH~~ Wake'N'Bake 101: Circus Act


Via the National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare, which is the slickest of the 'grass-roots' (vs. astro-turf) outfits on this beat, via The Early Show: a reminder to submit your Social Security questions for the CBS News Town Hall with President Obama (it's already too late, and probably already was by Wednesday AM, when I saw the notice). From the amount and the flow-rate of the corpoRat/State propaganda, this is setting up to be quite a D&P show. It's on the Early Show at 8 AM, EDT. Close enough to right now not to make any difference.
The quality of such questions is never particularly "pointed," although they can sound quite arcane. In previous shindigs, questions about legalizing pot predominated. But those were more or less unregulated. With CBS involved, there likely will be more "rigor" with today's calls.
Here is one of the questions NCPSSM has submitted (in advance: "Seniors already haven’t had a COLA for two years and now some in Congress want to cut Social Security again with a chained CPI. Would you support that kind of benefit cut for seniors?" Prez-O probably would answer "No." But, like most everything ELSE he's said, it would be a conditional denial, cuz he would/will certainly cave, as he has every time hitherto, to next GOPhux pressure attack, on the next debt-ceiling limit hike, or next year's budget, which looms like Ayers' Rock on the desert outback.
A questions I reckon you WON'T hear: "Will you sign legislation that makes SocSec "means-tested," which would violate the very IDEA of the program in the first place? (I doubt he'd actually answer that forthrightly even if he were to be asked.
Will you sign legislation that raises the age of retirement? "Mumble-mumble, waffle-waffle, hem-hrm, yadda yadda!"
What about this old, old chestnut: "Will you support raising the fucking Soc. Sec. earnings CAP, after which earners no longer pay Soc.Sec.? By that one expedient, raising it to, say, to $275K/yr (from ALL sources), you'd solve the whole problem of Social Security fluidity for fucking EVER.
But Prez-O is actually pretty much ambivalent about such stuff, I think. It doesn't affect him. He'll never bothered with such mundane matters, cuz he's now a "made man," with a life-time, irrevocable (unlike some) pension and complete, free care for him and Michelle. Besides, it's his JOB to alienate the citizenry, to drive people away from any 'faith' in Gummint, anyway. That's the whole purpose of the last 30 years of clusterfux in Washington and elsewhere: To alienate the people from THEIR OWN interests in self-sovereignty. The plan is to make folks so sick of Gummint that they'll HAPPILY pay MONEY for the CorpoRats to take over and stop telling everybody about how bad it is. I expect the job to be "done and dusted," as our friends in the "Home Aisles" say, about in time to install Jeb Bush, age 63, in 2016.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

WWH ~~ Wake'N'Bake 101: Details

WWH ~~ Wake'N'Bake 101: Details
The STOOPIT!: We, here in the USofA have a front-row seat to the spectacle of MORE of the STOOPITEST people than ever before, anywhere, ever, given a forum from which to spout REALLY STOOPIT SHIT, spouting really STOOPIT shit, seemingly without stop, at the top of their lungs, everywhere. The etymology of the word suggests just the opposite of the evident spirit of those possessed by it. "Stupid" historically meant "silent." We should BE so lucky.

BUt I wondered: What have the best minds in literary and political history had to say about "teh STOOPIT." It's CLEARLY played a SIGNIFICANT role in many momentous occasions.

Quite a lot, actually:
"We are all born ignorant, but one must work hard to remain stupid." -- Ben Franklin
“Stupidity is the deliberate cultivation of ignorance”-William Gaddis
It's too bad that stupidity isn't painful.”-Anton LaVey
“Can anything be stupider than that a man has the right to kill me because he lives on the other side of a river and his ruler has a quarrel with mine, though I have not quarrelled with him?”-Blaise Pascal
Just think of how stupid the average person is, and then realize half of them are even stupider!”-George Carlin
“The wise understand by themselves; fools follow the reports of others”-Tibeten Proverb
Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the the universe.” -- Albert Einstein
“The only way to comprehend what mathematicians mean by Infinity is to contemplate the extent of human stupidity.” -- Voltaire
We're in a giant car heading towards a brick wall and everyones arguing over where they're going to sit.” -- David Suzuki
"(The Wise) talk because they have something to say; fools, because they have to say something." -- Plato
"In a closed society where everybody's guilty, the only crime is getting caught. In a world of thieves, the only final sin is stupidity." -- Hunter S. Thompson
"Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity." -- M. L. King
"When a stupid man is doing something he is ashamed of, he always declares that it is his duty." -- -George Bernard Shaw
"The whole dream of democracy is to raise the proletarian to the level of stupidity attained by the bourgeois." -- Flaubert
"It is dangerous to be sincere unless you are also stupid." -- George Bernard Shaw
"Talk sense to a fool and he calls you foolish." -- Euripides
"Stupidity, outrage, vanity, cruelty, iniquity, bad faith, falsehood - we fail to see the whole array when it is facing in the same direction as we." Jean Rostand.
"Most people would die sooner than think; in fact, they do." -- Bertrand Russell
"Conservatives are not necessarily stupid, but most stupid people are conservatives." -- John Stuart Mill.
"Stupidity often saves a man from going mad." -- Oliver W. Holmes
Stupidity seems inexhaustible across time.

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Bombs Away!: Fyeieio, here's a fairly complete list of the sovereign countries on which the USofA has unleashed it's military might, from the safety and security of 30,000 feet or so:
China 1945-46, 1950-53
Korea 1950-53
Guatemala 1954
Indonesia 1958
Cuba 1959-60
Guatemala 1960, 1964, 1969-70
Belgian Congo 1964
Dominican Republic 1965-66
Peru 1965
Laos 1964-73
Vietnam 1961-73
Cambodia 1969-70
Lebanon 1982-84
Grenada 1983-84
Libya 1986, 1989, 2011
El Salvador 1981-92
Nicaragua 1981-90
Iran 1987-88
Panama 1989-90
Iraq 1991-2011
Kuwait 1991
Somalia 1992-94, 2011
Bosnia 1995
Sudan 1998, 2011
Afghanistan 1998-2011
Yugoslavia/Serbia/Kosovo 1994-1999
Yemen 2011
(N.B.: "Fyeieio" = "For your entertainment, information, education, illumination & outrage.")

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Tuesday, May 10, 2011

WWH~~ Wake'N'Bake 101: Resistance

Early Signs

Of Nuns, Guns, and Freedom Runs:
Along with the wanton, impudent betrayal of my 'great potential,' I was always regarded by the Sisters of the Immaculate Heart of Mary as a 'deportment' problem in grammar school. To shreve me of my sins, and to motivate me to work harder in school, the nuns of St. Mark's school kept me after school religiously--that is, virtually every day--during the course of my Sixth-Grade year. By my birthday, near the end of April, I was already in possession of the Diocessan Detention Award, having been made to "stay after school," for affronts to good school order--real and imagined--every day since the beginning of the second semester, in January.

So it was that, on my birthday that year (1957, iirc), Sister Mary Hand-Grenade was dragging me by the ear (I kid NOT) across the school parking lot from the school to the convent where a special room was set up with portable greenboards, on which it was my perpetual penance to inscribe countless repetitions of the times tables (to 25), squares (to 50), and for variation, endless, meaningless repetitions of the 10 Commandments. Twice an hour, or so, a Sister would check on me, and measure my progress. Usually, they released me about 4:30 pm.

(Higher maths were never my strong suit. I became accustomed to flunking shit like "Algebra II," "Calculus," and "Solid Geometry." I got by on GPA, cuz I aced Soc.Studies and Humanities. Solid "C" student. Who, btw --and everytime I say it, I visualize the earth in various Catholic cemeteries across the country churning uncomfortably, as a generation of long-deceased nuns and brothers spin in their graves at the mere possibility--eventually accomplished both a Master's and Ph.D., and TAUGHT! But I digress...)

I had been making that wretched trip, on and off, since September, but on this bright Spring day, MY BIRTHDAY, I rebelled: With a quick jerk of my head, I shook my ear free the hag's gnarled grip and pinching claw, and made a break for it!

It took Sister a second to recover her wits; the nuns never contemplated resistance. By the time reality had sunk in, I had a pretty goood start. I was quite quick of foot in my youth, and with the start I had, both she and I knew she was NEVER gonna catch me. (That she need only telephone my parents would have occurred to her, as it had to me; but my father was at work in the City, and my mother was, I was quite certain, away from the house playing bridge, sipping sherry, and planning good, philanthropic deeds with her sorority sisters. I was free, at least til dinner.)

It was exhilarating!I was almost skylarking. I heard her harpy's caw: "Boy! BOY! YOU COME BACK HERE, BOY!!!" I looked back and saw her coming at her best pace, striding and stamping across the parking lot, her black habit flapping, the crucifix on the rosary around her waste glinting in the sun like the hilt of a weapon. I felt like dancing a jig out of utter, insolent, impudent disrespect.

But then her voice changed. She was hollering out to the 'big' kids--the Eighth Graders--playing basketball in back of the school. Shouting commands at them like a drill sergeant, she sicced them on me with orders to return me to her, and not to return without me. They sprang to their assignment with what was, in my eyes, unseemly alacrity. Still, I also had a couple of jumps on them, and so I kicked it into lower gear and jetted homeward.

I wasn't going back.

It was a race in which I was pretty confident I had the advantage, since 1) I was quick and fast and knew where I was going, and 2) they pretty much had to follow me and overtake me when and if they could. I guessed they probably didn't know where I lived. Why would they. I was jsut a 6thie. So I led 'em astray a little, down an alley and over a fence and through a couple of yards: Cushioning my lead. I was about 50-60 yards ahead of 'em when I got to my block. They were just cutting the corner, across ol' Mr. Schneider's lot, grimly determined to return me to school, when I hit the front porch and bolted into the house.

Nobody home. Good!

Being a 'latch-key kid', I knew all the secrets of the place, and in particular I knew where my Dad kept a loaded .45 cal revolver. Of course, I knew I was already in BIG trouble, but I was utterly and irremediably determined that I was not going to go back to that school that day--it was my fucking BIRTHDAY!

I dashed through the house, up to my parents' bedroom, and yanked open the bureau drawer where, among his socks, I knew my Dad kept the gun. Seizing it, I ran down stairs and got to the door, pistol in hand--but hand out of sight, below the glass--as the Eighth Graders stormed noisily up the steps and onto the porch. Thumping, loud, rude, and noisy, they clamored and demanded I come out.

"Sister wants you back at school!" the biggest of them declared, menacingly. "If you don't come out, we'll come in after you!" When I refused, they started to reach for the door...

Which was when I raised that pistol and cocked that big ol' trigger.

Instantly, everything stopped, arrested in time.

It was a big gun.
It was in plain sight.
I had it in my hand and I was pointing it skyward...
And there was a movement and ...
I flinched, or something,
And the gun kinda ...

WENT OFF!!!

GAWDAM!
The roar of that old hogleg in the tiny vestibule of the house was tremendous, an ear-splitting, stupendous, enormous, incredible, thunderous, deafening BOOOOM. This was an OLD gun, and it was not a smokeless powder round. Acrid smoke filled the space. The heavy bullet had splintered the door jamb overhead...and when I looked again out the door, the Eighth Grade had vanished, scattered like a covey of quail. I took the gun back where I had found it, then went outside with my basketball and shot hoops til the first parent returned.

When the Mother Superior of the parish convent called that night to apprise my parents of the dreadful details surrounding the incident, everyone (I gather) was 1) shocked and 2) outraged, both at 1) my departure from detention, but moreso at 2) the means of my defense of that decision. There was (I gather) talk of 1) police, and of 2) sending me to the juvenile delinquency home to "teach him a lesson he'll never forget."

I received a serious 'whuppin' for that stunt. And I went back to school a few days later. But I never spent another day's detention in that school that year, or ever. And the Eighth Grade avoided me as though I were contagious. I don't know how MUCH it was related, but we moved into a new parish before school started the following year.

Oh, and Pop made me clean the pistol; showed me how...

Monday, May 9, 2011

WWH ~~ Wake'N'Bake 101: (Animals, formerly "Triumphs")

DOGS: You don't bad-mouth Pit Bull dogs around Dr. Woody. I have had one as a canine companion for 6 years. Budreaux (behaving sillily, in the foto at the top) is the Best Damn Dog I ever had.

Besides the fact that there is NO SUCH THING as a "bad dog" or a "dangerous breed" (dogs are totally the products of their environments, so if they're "bad," look to the people!) you don't bad-mouth 'em, you don't ban 'em, you don't fight 'em, you don't abuse 'em and you don't encourage crap about 'em where I am likely to be found.

The Pit Bull/Am Staff, whatever you want to call 'em, is THE "All-American dog." Remember Petey, of the Li'l Rascals, Buster Browne's dog Tighe, probably Sandy, Little Orphan Annie's dog, were all pit bulls or pit-mixed dogs. More than 40% of all mixed-breed dogs in the US are Pit-mixes somewhere along the line. They were revered as combat dogs, companion dogs and were the "nanny" dog to countless generations of folks, prior to the mid-1980s.

I have long believed that "breed-specific legislation," such that bans certain breeds (pit bulls and Rottweilers, these days), and/or permits their confiscation and destruction, are actually surrogates devised by nervous White folks in suburbs who are anxious to exclude "undesirable (brown) folks" so, being forbidden zoning and other tricks by affirmative action and other social remedies, they have hit upon the expedient of legally banning the DOGS associated with the dangerous, "urban" brigands. This sorta crap justs frosts my ass.

So when I heard, on "the Book," (Zuckerberg's Folly) that a school teacher at Osborne Park High School, in Manassas, VA, had assigned a student paper on the topic "People Should NOT Own Pit Bulls,” it set me off a little and I composed the following mild message to the school, the Asst. Principal, and all the rest of the people whose eddresses I have from the story:
To Whom It May Concern Among the Faculty and Administration:
Sir/Madame:
As an educator, I understand your dilemma, and I have to hand it to you folks for creativity. Ingenious!
You couldn’t get away with assigning a paper about why students wouldn’t want a dad-gum, uppity, mebbe dangerous “NEE-grow” to move into your neighborhood, I guess, so you assign a paper demanding students supply reasons why it’s okay to exclude the dogs that are associated with the undesirable people.
Brilliant! You could give lessons…Oh, wait, you do!
Signed:
Dr. Woody
If crap like this frosts your cupcakes the way it does mine, feel free to follow the links and drop the good burghers of Manassas a line.

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CHICKENS: Amid the jingoistic clamor and seemingly irresistible triumphalism of the "Victory" by Barack Obama and Team Six," over Usama bin Laden, and Team Jihad-with-kids-around, there is one important detail to remember, which might be overlooked in the blood-heat of revenge:

The immutable globalist-corpoRatist-monopolist 'foreign policies' of the USofA are recognized around the world as impediments to 'progress' against the indisputable, evident and growing dangers of climate change. "We"--well, what "we" elect, anyway, and the policies "we"/they (don't) enact represent REAL dangers to the health, even, ultimately the survival, of just about everybody ELSE on the planet. That's one dilemma about claiming the moral high ground of "democracy": You then necessarily ARE responsible for the actions of those you entrust with your power (such as it is).

This was no LESS obvious to critical observers in 2000 than it is now; it is only MORE obvious now to the LESS critically inclined. So, it is possible, plausible, even, to observe the attacks on in NYC, & DC on 9/11/01 as interpret them as a reminder from one node of the rest of the world to US of what it feels like when inexplicable, uninvited, chaotic, bloody death rains from the sky?

I mean: "We've" done it all over the world, you know, since... really since we could, what, probably since 1895? The First American Imperial War against Spain? More or less. "We" flew bi-wing fighter planes against "insurgents" all over Central America. Take a look, sometime at the list of US "military" exercises and adventures carried out between 1895 and 1940 in the WESTERN hemisphere. They're collectively known as the "Banana Wars."

A hundred and sixteen years later, a couple of highly explosive chickens come home to roost, and the country goes fucking ape-shit ballistic?

What drives the Owners crazy is that "9/11" vividly showed the rest of the world that they (and, of course, "we") were NOT impregnable. That's bad form for an Empire, especially one just beginning to decline...Future historians may, in fact, decide that 9/11 actually marked the appearance of the first fatal symptom of Imperial collapse.

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CAUTION? Dr. Woody must be gettin' old, cuz he wonders what all y'all who wanna "abolish" gummint think is gonna happen when you do.

How ya gonna flush the toilet? Water's a public utility--gummint; etc. And that's the easy part!

We are 350 MILLION fiercesomely well-armed, intellectually stunted, emotionally retarded, socially incompetent, spiritually delusional, murderously xenophobic, terrifyingly insular, paranoid, apocalyptic sadists. Without gummint, who'd bury ALL the bodies?

And around us in the world, there are nearly enough to 6.5 billion others of us, equally ferocious, much less well-armed, but hungrier and therefore more likely to figure THEY, and not you, have nothing to lose.

Are you UP for that? Really?

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ZOMBIES! Another right-wing economic Klan has emerged to join the Kochs in the limelight of revealed public manioyuklation for private advantage. The name's De Vos, and they, like Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, and a fair number of incredibly wealthy ignorami, want to direct national educational policy away from the public school and locate education decisively in the private (and also the paradoxically religious) sector. So-called "charter schools" are and always have been an instrument, a lever, by which private interests wedged public money out of public schools and into private pockets.

Of course, if you view schools as instruments of indoctrination, it terribly important that you control what's being indoctrinated, too.

The REALLY wealthy people do NOTHING that does not increase either their power or their stash/horde. So do NOT be misled by rich folks' "philanthropies." Mostly it amounts to the endless endeavors by the richest folks to keep control of their wealth from beyond the grave.

Friday, May 6, 2011

WWH ~~ Wake'N'Bake 101: Pragmatic

PWNED: In 2007, St Barry began his campaign by saying he was a "pragmatist."

In "killing Osama," ThePrez has demonstrated that quality again, in spades. What he has accomplished is pragmatic to the 'nth' degree. Because what he has done--just prior to the tenth anniversary; a totemic date of 9/11--is he has effectively bought--well, to be completely honest, he WON--the political bragging rights to "America's Greatest Tragedy"

He now "owns" the franchise. He CAN use killing Osama in his campaign; he CAN show the tower images and the Pentagon pictures; he CAN proclaim "Mission: Accomplished." And nobody --by which I mean the GOPhux--can say shit about it. That the killing goes on in the AF-Pak and Iraq is just a niggling detail, about which the Right has ZERO standing to complain, given their recorded sympathies (though, when has that proven any kind of bar?). Anyway, if he or his people so decide to do so, they're 'allowed.' They "won" the pot; they get the chips.

The totemic Tenth anniversary of 9/11 is a'comin, and 'killing Osama" will play like a champ in the heartlands. Then a year later, a re-election! Makes sense to me. No point in letting the GOPhux have it all their own for ANOTHER election cycle. Hell, the bloody-minded xenophobes and islamophobe wackloons are so stoked up, if the election were held this week, he'd carry Oklahoma, I bet...

Erm....well, mebbe not Oklahoma...(I STILL think there could be a plan in the works to change "Labor Day" to "First Response Day" or some such pseudo-patriotic codswallop; it may have been brought closer, since Obama "killed" Osama. Especially since the full-scale war by the CorpoRatistas against the rest of us had recently so greatly increased in vitriol.)

In some circles, your gentle Professor is thought to have a particularly darkly ugly and suspicious mind. Probably because things like this occur to me.

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RHETORIC: Thom Hartmann, about whom I frequently fuss, was rhapsodic about the Presidential rhetoric again this (Thursday) morning, approving the sentiment:
"That's not who we are" says President Obama, explaing why the White House will not release Osama bin Laden pictures.
Me: Saith I, "Codswalliop

"Who we are? WTF: Take a look around you!@

"We" are a nation of thoughtless, murderous imperialists who drop high explosive munitions from unmanned drone aircraft on helpless, unarmed civilian--including women and children--in the boondocks of Central Asia for no GREATER purpose than to keep our economy afloat.

"We" are a nation of mindless, even conspicuously wasteful resource-gluttons: 5% of the world's people consuming 25% of the world's resources. "We" are to the world what OUR .01% are to you and me.

"We" are a nation of narcotized, infantilized, propagandized, sanitized, amusementized, mediatized, consumerized, android/ipodized, automatized, atomized fucking niche-markets. We're not A "people" anymore. We are the (temporary) culmination of that ancient, authoritarian requirement for a voluntarily enslaved population of attendants. And that was/is the whole point.

What really annoys me about Hartmann and his like is this:

What Hartmann, et al, seem blissfully ignorant of--or, if they are not ignorant of it, they studiously avoid acknowledging it--is that it took the Birchers and their ideological/political progeny almost 50 years from the "first shot" in the plutocratic coup d'etat against popular sovereignty--first shots: Nov. 22, 1963--and countless BILLIONS of dollars, millions of hours of organization and leg-work, and the beneficences of no fewer than 30, mostly anonymous billionaire donors, to so COMPLETELY, Utterly, and IRREVERSIBLY take over the Country.

Even if "we" had the resources, the man-power, and the donors (1 puny billionairre, George Soros, aint gonna get it) we don't have the TIME.

The criminal futhermockers are now totally embedded. Nothing short of mortar fire is gonna dislodge 'em...No, really.

And they did all this in just under 75 years--just under a Century, if you date it from Bernays' first successful 'campaign.' It really is remarkable.

Be VERY PROUD! I know I am...


(Edited: 5/13/11 @ 1137 hrs, mdt.)
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The word "medicine" is rooted in the same etymology as the word "mede" which, I presume you know, is fermented honey, the drinking of which has been known since pre-civilization to ease one's ills.

Hence, medicine is defined as that which soothes the afflicted. Weed does that better than ANY other substance known to man. Ergo, cannabis = medicine.

(Humans consume the exudates of a very limited number of species, honey and milk being the two most prominent in our culture. Interestingly (or not), honey makes good wine; milk doesn't.)

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Thursday, May 5, 2011

WWH~~ Wake'N'Bake 101: TRACKS

GERONIMO! The US military/intelligence/assassination-complex, in the inimitable way of their tribe, had to assign a "code-name" by which to keep track and talk obscurely about Osama bin Laden. They chose "Geronimo-2." Some Native Americans are outraged, especially some members of his family in southern New Mexico. They take offense. But it seems misplaced. Geronimo was NOT a "loyal," American, ever, to my knowledge. He was ALWAYS an "enemy," always a threat.

So, in its way, it strikes Dr. Woody as a back-handed compliment. Remember, the original Geronimo, the mystic and medicine man, was the most feared enemy/opponent the white invaders faced in that place and time. ALL the Europeans were flat fucking terrified of him, both in northern Mexico and in the border areas of the USer southwest (not unlike bin Laden). They hunted him with THOUSANDS of troops, horses, artillery, scouts, white hunters, everything (not unlike bin Laden). Eventually, they wore him down.

Geronimo they didn't kill on the spot. They humiliated him first and sent him far away (to Florida), and then let captivity take its toll. He had a Cadillac. He was buried in Fort Sill, OK, I recall--that's where one of the Bush's stole his skull--but his remains may have been moved.

He wasn't from around there, anyway.

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KISMET: What led to Osama's death? In a word: Politics!

St. Barry's fucktard/wackloon/teabaggin' critics are claiming that the killing of Usama bin Laden was, primarily, a "political" move.

Duh! Of course, it was. It was political all the WAY!

"ThePrez" knows that he ABSOLUTELY, VITALLY needed to silence 'left' critics (who were mostly upset by the wars and Gitmo), and start to draw the anti-war (the "professional") "Left" back into the fold for the forthcoming re-election campaign. The only (easy) way to accomplish that is to make it look like St. Barry is keeping promises he made to them TWO years ago to start troops reductions from AF-PAK this summer, 2011. That process has to start soon.

But if he did that, without some definitive change in the situation on the ground, the chicken-shit chickenhawks of the wacktard/teabagger "Right" would have castigated him for 'cutting-and-running' (wasn't that the term of art of yore, which the Busheviks threw at Kerry, in '04?).

So, he had to 'pre-emptively' silence wacktard/fuckloon critics who'd claim he was "leaving the job unfinished," or "chickening out," or "losing Afghanistan." He couldn't get a battlefield victory, so what was left? Killing Bin Laden. Simple!

It's called "real politik." It's how "states-qua-states" act. Some will still whine that it was a "Political" decision, a political act designed to curry favor from a constituency. My reply: Well, yeah...

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TARGETS: Dr. Woody imagines that at this rather late date, already three or four days later, we have all heard about Team SIX, the super-spiffy, hyper-secret, ultra-deadly force of killers the USofA threw against that house in Abbottabad to finally--apparently--kill the infamous, notorious, evasive, evil, dangerous Usama bin Laden (for whom, or in whose memory, on Tuesday, the NYTimes, no less, for once refused to use the honorific "Mr.."--the ultimate posthumous indignity! Imagine!)

The thing for which I commend your attention to these murderous notables is that, under the regime recently authorized by Congress for pursuing deadly foes of the State, St. Barry--or any subsequent occupant of that Office--would be permitted to sicc'em, secretly on YOU (or more likely, me) should we provoke the Presidential temper sufficiently and/or be perceived as a sufficient threat to the interests of the State.

No oversight, no warrant, nothing so much as a fucking "by your leave!"

Just: "Blam." Finis.

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DEBT: I often, anymore, find the professional punditry to be, shall we say, disingenuous?

EJ Dionne's Truthdig (and elsewhere) column the other day is a prime example: He makes it sound as if the debate is WHETHER we raise the ceiling, when there is nowhere on any part of planet Earth ANY doubt that the debt ceiling will be raised.

The real question is --should be, even from so besotted a tool as EJ Dionne: "How many concessions can the GOPhux chisel out of our living hides, through compromises and sacrifices "thePrez" will be "forced" for the very SAKE OF THE FUCKING NATION ITSELF to make, to "save" the national credit for another year.

A fool can see where this leads, when in just three months, "negotiations" over the NEXT budget are supposed to begin: More concessions, more compromises, more "sacrifices." And there's an election coming up.

So let this be a lesson to ya!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

WWH~~ Wake'N'Bake 101: The Cure

May, if you haven't heard is National Masturbation Month. No, really, said Tom dryly. It is my firm conviction that, if it were possible to train ALL male children to auto-fellate, from birth, there would be world peace in a generation, as men would no longer have any reason to leave the house.

In reply to an un-linked 'quote' in a post by a 'friend' today about male circumcision (and which evidently was part of another, on-going conversation to which I did not link:
‎"00.03% of adult men willfully choose to be circumcised; no WONDER we do it to babies! Because we know they would NEVER choose that for themselves." Thank you for pointing this out, Bryan Rice. This is an income stream that would virtually dry up if neonatal genital alterations were NOT performed. 3 in 1000 men is not enough to financially support the circumcision doctors.
The number of uncircumcised (white) men in my demographic is miniscule. Cutting is so common that seeing an "undocked" penis, for guys my age, is likely to evoke the recollection of the first one you EVER noticed (swimming pool dressing-room at the Lakewood, Oh, YMCA, in mebbe 1956, iirc).

The history of the conquest of American manhood by surgical disfigurement is of course but one chapter in a long and painful struggle. The first records of the practice are from the Pharaonic era, 4500 years ago in Egypt, with a frieze depicting the (forcible) circumcision of a (physically restrained) young Ruler. I DON'T think this chould be taken to mean the practice was wide-spread; instead it argues, to me, that it was an identifying/distinguishing mark of the royal caste.

Christian cults make an incredibly big deal about masturbation, or as they sometimes call it, "the Sin of Onan" (no, not the tractor/generator company; they merged with ... wait for it ... No, really: Cummins Diesel; you CANNOT make this shit up!). Circumcision has for a long time been regarded as a cure for it, on the theory that it desensitizes the glans.

As early a 1842, a French surgeon named Claude-Fran├žois Lallemand completed Les Pertes seminales involontaires (Involuntary seminal losses), promoting a theory of "spermatorrhoea" - the view that almost any discharge from the penis caused disease. Lallemand, one of those piously sadistic reformers one finds so frequently among the 'righteous,' promoted acupuncture (with large needles pushed into the prostate), catheters, cauterisation and circumcision as "cures" - all done as painfully as possible. His views are apparently still very influential in some circles.

Circumcision became wide-spread among Gentiles in the USofA in the mid-late 19th Century when religious fucknozzles insisted on it, because they said it would impede young men's interest in masturbation. (Speaking only for myself: it didn't work...) The whole idea of male circumcision in America is another of the indubitable, but unheralded impositions of religious orthodoxy on the (often willfully) ignorant; it's the result of religious quackery which sought to make a man's first experience with his genitalia as painful as possible.

In 1870, a Dr. Lewis A. Sayre announced to the AMA that circumcision cures paralysis, epilepsy and masturbation, setting off the medical craze for "therapeutic" circumcision. His "circumcision" is, however, conservative, preserving as much tissue as possible. "Mutilation" was to be avoided. Then in 1877, John Harvey Kellogg MD (1852-1943) published the first edition of "Plain facts for old and young: embracing the natural history and hygiene of organic life", in which child (but not infant) circumcision is promoted to "cure" masturbation. This "cure" was given extra emphasis when, in 1881, Charles Guiteau shoots and kills President James A. Garfield, and phimosis and smegma buildup under his foreskin were blamed for his homicidal mental state.

But phimosis and excessive smegma build-up were only tow of the things that were associated with the curative powers of male circumcision. Others included:
"To prevent or cure alcoholism, arthritic hips, asthma, balanitis, blindness, boils, cervical cancer, chicken pox, epididymitis, epilepsy, gallstones, gout, headaches, hernia, HIV, hydrocephaly, hydrocoele, hypertension, insanity, kidney disease, kleptomaina, leprosy, moral depravity, paraphimosis, penile cancer, plague, phimosis, posthitis, prostate cancer, rectal prolapse, rheumatism, schistosoma, spinal curvature, stomach infection, tuberculosis, urinary tract infections and/or yeast infections."
Funny, innit that it turns out, after all this time, regular/frequent masturbation is a mild prophyllactic against prostate cancer: An ejaculation a day keeps the cancer at bay!

SO wack-'em if ya gott'em...