Teach Your Children

For the children.

Two items caught my eye today.

One, educational entrepreneurship is still rising (charter schools) as a "bold" idea to fix something that isn't broken (test scores-especially now that most schools teach to the tests.) The facts are that low SES students do well in spite of the lack of balance in funding (where the true problem exists.)

Two, a study that states that by the time a person reaches the age of 23 there is a 40+ percentage chance that they will have been cited/arrested by police for something other than a traffic violation.

What is this saying about our superficial care for a critical part of our population? I believe these two trends in our society are interwoven on many levels; economic, social/psychological and intellectual.

ECONOMICS: As we have decided that the business model is the future of our schools we have made money the focus of the school's functions (reading, writing, arithmetic are just policies that help to promote the brand.) In this model the output (test scores) become paramount to actual learning (critical thinking, civic awareness, etc...) and the result is a misunderstanding of the actual rules and customs that exist. Next, our justice system has devolved to another business model; the casino. There is no incentive to correct an injustice in this system. As long as the "house" keeps the money flowing the young (and we the people) will continue to lose.

SOCIAL/PSYCHOLOGICAL: It is apparent that some/most young people have been trained to accept the word of those in authority (some of it deserved.) However, If we are to believe the numbers involved in the study mentioned above then we have more than a serious problem with our justice system and it begins with both the police and the schools. Here are two segments of the population that hold tremendous power. The abuse of this power has made it difficult for our young to understand that they have the same rights and freedoms as every other individual in this country. Fear of authority is not a healthy seed to sow, let alone grow.

INTELLECTUAL: Schools are not businesses. They serve one function; to educate. The major problem with our school system is the inequality of resources available to students. It is not test scores and it is not teachers. It is the mindset of administrators who are business oriented and not education oriented. I don't see this problem being circumvented anytime soon either. We will be told our schools are failing and that it is the fault of the teachers and the only way to fix it will be to allow a for-profit business to assume leadership. I fear that this message has already been thoroughly sold to the "collective."

The young are no more promiscuous now than they were 50 years ago. Why do we put up with the justice systems abuse of our young? What are we teaching them about us? Do we really care about them? Our justice system is broke and the remedy is to allow it to continue to function (dysfunction) because it is TBTF (too big to fail.) Sure, I know, justice is served at some (not all mind you) meta-level by this system, but at a mega-level it is truly fucked up (the Supreme Court e.g.) Just a rudimentary knowledge of the Bill of Rights would help if it weren't for the fact that those don't seem to apply to us (we the people) either.

The lesson: Hypocrisy and fear is what we teach our children.



If at any point in your life you considered voting or siding with a republican, you are a mugwump. No ifs, ands, nors ors or buts. I might add that democrats are just a dimmer, less virulent version, but you may be forgiven for that lapse in judgment. The festering rot you see before you, if you take off the blinders for a second, is the result of our political system and specifically, republicans.

"A mugwump sits with his mug on one side of the fence and his wump on the other."
(loose quotation from the movie 1776 attributed to Ben Franklin)


Custard Pie

Farting in the Wind edition 3

Anyone who says this:

"My staff over-reacted to (activity) and for that I apologize, freedom of speech is among our most treasured freedoms."

Shouldn't be allowed to govern an ant farm. He can't even take full responsibility like a good functionary; what a tool.

Blow me, GOP...


I am the Walrus

Farting in the wind edition 2

Anyone who utters these words out loud:

"My most sincere and personal heartfelt condolences go out to the families and loved ones of any members of (insert group name here) who may have been killed or injured (by the war drone attack.)"

Is as bereft of compassion as the self-deluded nation for which they serve.

The functionaries seem to be farting in the wind a lot these days.



Krugman krugmanned an anti-Krugman this Krugmangiving Day.

Today I saw a headline in some business publication that began with the word Krugman and then I proceeded to read the article and it was about George "Needledick" Will; not a word about Krugman.



Tears of a Clown

Farting in the wind edition

Anyone who utters these words:

"I take full responsibility for the events on (insert date here) and am extremely saddened by what occurred."

And is not summarily punished for their wrongdoing, has taken you and the victims of their actions for the mindless rubes they think you are. Can your minds not fathom the evil cynicism in their feigned sincerity? Full responsibility will never be taken by a functionary. Token heads will roll and then we will move on to the next atrocity and the next quasi-apology and the next muddleheaded faux inquisition.

I am extremely saddened.


I have more in common with doom saying right-wing nut jobs than with the placid middle of the road MUGWUMPS who wouldn't know the difference (or care) between an electric bill and the Bill of Rights. Sad, but true. Strip away the wingnut hate, ignorance and bigotry and their message is one of doom. Depression sets in when my thoughts turn thus. I foresee no reasonable escape for my conundrum, nor do I desire one at this point. I only hope that what arises from the ashes of this mockery of life will be its antithesis. (I'd pray if I believed in a sky god of some kind, but I don't so I won't.)

American culture is devoid of true compassion (we know the words to the song but not the meaning.) It is a culture based upon violence and atrocity. Hell, we have made cruelty a national meme. Our art is split between a glorification of violence and a disneyfied world where everyone is a star. "Bread and circuses" have been replaced by "blood and syrup." Our beliefs are dictated by god and its god, money. Our customs and laws routinely punish the weak and charity is a sign of weakness. This is not culture, but misogyny. It is a breeding ground for "doom and gloom" with "shock and awe" as its marketing strategy.

Mean Mistreater

I harbor under no delusions of self-perceived moral superiority. I observe, absorb, analyze, synthesize and evaluate. My conclusions are based upon an understanding of what I perceive as wrongdoing (I may be wrong, but I don't think so.) However, this perception is limited, in this analysis, by what I consider to be violence. Violence is a willful harmful action inflicted upon others. The reasons for the actions are moot. There is no moral balance sheet that can redeem a "bad" action by a consequent "good" action. However, contrition may rectify or recompense the person(s) effected by the malevolence if a return to the conditions that preceded the violence can be obtained. This would not mitigate the original deed itself, but could be construed as a "good" action.

Moral hair-splitting is reserved for non-violent acts. If but a single life is lost or livelihood destroyed then the deed can never be allayed. This is not rocket science. Neither is it law. This is about conscience and morality. When, and if, we can rise above our "random acts of violence" mindset and petty selfishness we may achieve a moral backbone that praises good over a malignant hatred of ourselves.


Bad Moon Rising

Malice: An After Thought

Minerva's owl has departed,
Was it only a ghost?
A spirit that has left,
No solace.
I am and I am bereft,
No substance or clue.
As a shell.
Crying rivers like promises,
No secrets to tell.

Here stands the grand old primate,
Regaled in glory!
Flesh stripped to the bone,
In sleepless caverns alone.
With callous nerve askew,
And powerfully weak.
Playing pawns with the game,
Beautifully bleak.

Whimsical portraits hung in effigy,
To art that is frozen.
An imagination of reality,
Proles sworn to fealty.
On this day,
We knew we'd rue.
Our mourning this morning,
Of comatose gloom.
As gladfully happy insects,
we praise the war drones of doom.

Wisdom (Fly Away)
Beauty (Fades to Black)
Goodness (An Anchor)

Truth be damned.


Where Have All the Flowers Gone?

93 years ago today the Guns of August were silenced. The Great War took a respite and the victors took their pound of flesh. In this, the greatest country ever, we took solace in the fact that we only lost a couple hundred thousand lives as opposed to the millions murdered in Europe. The decadent "Age of Monarchy" was rightfully put in the dustbin of history and the emerging "Age of Capital" assumed its mantle.

We honor the functionaries today. They deserve our notice. For the soldiers of the world have sacrificed and been sacrificed in the name of illusive glory and unrequited honor. Sacrifices which sent many to their last moments. Fodder of cannons and goats of scaping; a sadness wells in my heart.

Remember at your own peril.


Me and My Arrow

It should be noted that 99% takes in a lot of rich people. Is this class warfare or am I missing the point? Also, we of the lower class are divided by so many differing ideals and beliefs that it appears to be insurmountable. Sex and religion alone account for the vast majority of divisions, let alone economic and political philosophy. We also have the functionaries whose sole purpose is to "protect and serve" the masters of the universe by pretending to uphold principles like law, justice, peace, ad nauseum.

The US System is broken beyond repair. Corruption is the "New Normalcy." Be good americans and if you promise not to say anything about it we'll leave you alone; for now. My life is too short to worry about such trivialities; my children and grandchildren can handle it. It's not my problem; fuck you I got mine. What would you have me do; I am only one person.

What is the point?


Comfortably Numb


Sitting and waiting,
Master red-baiting,
Hoping my ship will come in.

Who has the courage,
To show some compassion,
Who will cast the first pointy stone.

Mind flayers preach,
From smouldering boxes,
And the pitiful weep just the same.

We are...

Shouting into empty canyons.
Still air disturbed by fury,
And wrath.

Nary a thought,
And meaningless.



War Pigs

Honor Unrequited

FTA. This acronym was very popular in the late modern US army (as opposed to the new modern army in place now.) I believe it was a response to the Defense (War) Department's ad campaign at the time. This was before "Be all you can be" and "An army of one." Fun, Travel and Adventure was the pitch of the new all-volunteer, post-Vietnam military. Wonderfulness abounded as the broken wreck of the US military regrouped from its bitter loss during its most recent "war of occupation." Honor must be restored.

Fuck The Army. The mumbled plea of a few disquieted soldiers. You know who you were. The sham of "duty and honor" as buzzwords for mindless obedience gripped your awareness soon after swearing your oath to defend the Constitution. Dissent in an army cannot be tolerated. There is no honor when respect is lost. That is, unless your world-view is dependent upon honor for honor's sake (a self-perpetuating, self-justifying circle-jerk played by little boys in funny costumes.)

A symptom of decay within this "honor society" is its single-minded support of a corrupt system and corrupt leaders. It can't do anything else. The "honorable" must serve. To diverge from this path would be dishonorable and ritual seppuku must ensue. The emperor wears no clothes and the emperor's honorable servants will defend to the death (preferably someone other then them) their perception of a fully robed emperor. The nail that stands out must be hammered.

A servant is still a servant no matter how decorative the costume. Some servants actually believe they are masters because their plumage is more elaborate and their title more noble. Honor, like faith, just IS and is therefore immune to criticism. Self analysis would shake the very foundations of belief. Self-absorption and elitism are signs of decay within ANY ideology. The betrayal of the "honorable" by their "masters" is not an option. Their relationship is intertwined by bonds of loyalty and preordination. "My tribe, right or wrong" and "Death to the other tribe" are the mantras created by this "crazy glue."

Thus, the servants (functionaries) of order (the masters) are truly powerless in spite of the quasi-power they wield. Their ambition tightens the bonds and renders their escape untenable and undesirable. The functionary must obey and insure compliance to order and discipline without remorse or regret. Honor forgives one for the most heinous of crimes done to preserve the master's will. Most systems and organizations (especially the military) cannot function capably without honor. Misplaced and misguided loyalty corrupts honor. HONOR becomes honor and its worth is diminished. It becomes nothing less than honor among thieves and killers. Where is the honor in that?


We Like Our Titles, Don't We?

Wherever I have found a place to hang my hat I have always been amused by the other cowpokes affinity for tags to their names. Foreman, stable-boy, cookie, boss (usually called by some military title he paid for long ago), etc... At any rate, for a titled person, a title is the sum total of what and who they are. The modern world beckons to the titled. As a general observation, any substance obtained from your magnificence is diminished in proportion to your magnanimity. Authoritative societies love their titles.

Just a thought.


Truth Novus

It is the policy of death and atrocity,

As an empire fails.

Nolo Contender,

As we swoon never-ender,

On a suicide Bender.

"The Americans have promised us a better life,"

"But we get only death."

Gunshot wounds to the head,

Nothing remains,

But a brute stare of nothingness into nothingness.

"The Americans give us advisers,"

"And blame and death..."

It is the policy of death and atrocity,

As an empire fails.

Nolo Contender,

As we swoon never-ender,

On a suicide Bender.

The gangs of thieves are salivating,

As the house gives up its treasure.

Empty the vaults,

Pawn the silver,

Throw a few crumbs onto the street.

This path, untoward and maldirected, leads to a festering pit of tyranny,

Take my freedom but leave me be and I will be a "Good American."

The gang of thieves depends on it...

It is the policy of death and atrocity,

As an empire fails.

Nolo Contender,

As we swoon never-ender,

On a suicide Bender.

Hot winds are blowing...

Irrigated by oil,

The sowing of guns proceeds aplenty.

And the heathen shall be driven from the land,

By a "just and merciful" hand.

Too many gods,

Not enough gods.

The righteous have spoken,

We are damned...

It is the policy of death and atrocity,

As an empire fails.

Nolo Contender,

As we swoon never-ender,

On a suicide Bender.

The words are spoken and written,

In a Babelesque cacophony of chaos.

Nothing is everything or something, maybe.

Images of heads spouting blather and lies,

Masks of death and Masques of Death.

A mimicry of life and love long since past,

Reality and truth have parted ways...

It is the policy of death and atrocity,

As an empire fails.

Nolo Contender,

As we swoon never-ender,

On a suicide Bender.

Black ops and copters, white hats and skin,

"You're with us or against us,"

And the middle ends.

We'll throw a few more virgins on the campfire,

Blood, sex and too many wrecks.

Never to forgive what we never remember...

It is the policy of death and atrocity,

As an empire fails.

Nolo Contender,

As we swoon never-ender,

On a suicide Bender.



Global Intellectual Failure

"Reasoned debate presupposes mutual knowledge of sincerity." I read this quote and it is applicable from the loftiest aerie of our "masters of the universe" and their psychophantic body of experts to the lowliest molecule of gelatinous matter known as the ignorant unthinking masses. The result is GIF. If a truth is spoken amongst the forest of lies and a world hears it will it be noticed? I doubt if the purveyors of GIF are even aware of the disease. It is quite a paradox.

It saddens me to say that GIF is terminal as there is truly no activity or system that I can see that will thwart its continued toxicity. I used to believe the "crazy times" would not happen in my lifetime, but I am not so sure anymore. With technology (and science) and the globalization of our villages we have achieved an acceleration of "the stupid" on an epic scale and course.

It is only a matter of time...

`The time has come,' the Walrus said, `To talk of many things: Of shoes -- and ships -- and sealing-wax -- Of cabbages -- and kings -- And why the sea is boiling hot -- And whether pigs have wings.' 



The Fish Cheer

One of the major hurdles to our progression from caveman to spaceman has always been the propagandist. They willingly toot their own horns and outshout their opposition with deceptions, deflections and distractions. This creates an illusion where it is nearly impossible to understand what is truly happening. This is why it is important that Rupert the kingmaker be brought low and his media empire dissolved. These are not nice people and it would do the world a kindness to be rid of them and their ideological power brokers (The criminal syndicate formerly known as the Republican party.)

Patience has been both a blessing and a curse for me (mostly a curse) during my entire cognizant life. One cretin at a time. If this plays out in this country like it appears to be playing out in the UK then we are one step closer to a world of justice instead of greed. Again, one cretin at a time. Maybe we will see the reinstatement of The Fairness Doctrine, but that would be getting our hopes up to much now wouldn't it?


Double Envelopment

I can't imagine the democratic party being as obtuse as it has shown itself to be in the face of such obvious inhumanity (criminals formerly known as republicans.) There are many explanations for their (democrats) actions, but two stand out. The first explanation involves their complicity, or duplicity in the destruction of our economy in the name of austerity. The problem was created by the GOP and by following their dictates we will be diminished further. The cynic in me yearns to be wrong, but 40 years of waiting for something to happen is a long time.

I tire of my pessimism. We have reached a point in time where even the most jaded and secluded of minds can see that something is wrong. The good news is the thugs known as republicans haven't a clue that their selfish philosophy is repugnant and by seeming to compromise with them we are in fact hastening their end; I HOPE.

It is time for this monster to die at a metaphorical Battle of Cannae.

In effect, the Roman army had defeated itself.
It had solely relied on the superiority of its legionaries, having lined them up and told them to advance. No use had been made of the superior numbers, other than to simply add more ranks onto the back of the advancing columns. As the Carthaginian units manoeuvered, nothing was done to counter their actions. One simply did what one had always done - advance.
And the superiority of their legions perhaps made them rely too heavily on their soldiers alone.
In short, Roman tactics were non-existent at Cannae. The Roman force acted with brute force, charging at its dangerously clever opponent like a bull.



Well, it seems like we are about to get a NEW, NEW DEAL. It isn't very encouraging that the dealers in this game have no conception of humanity, but they do know how to play the game (i.e. rig it.) So, in keeping with the spirit of the metaphor (I never liked poker anyway) I propose that we abandon the DEAL altogether and move on to a NEW GAME.

The game should be all inclusive and not just for "rich white guys." We take all the bailout money the banks and other institutions have "borrowed" from the people of this country and distribute it to those who aren't "rich white guys."

I know you are saying to yourself, "Hey, that isn't very all-inclusive, dude?"

From an old world-view paradigm it appears that way, but this is the new world-view paradigm and I call it TRICKLE UP economics. Those at the top tier of our economic ladder haven't lost anything with the change of the game and they get to benefit from all that cash the poor, huddled masses will spend in their glee to...

here it comes...



Hey Joe

I hadn't corresponded with him in many years, but I still read his commentary and always meant to see about heading his way. Alas, as with everything else in this procrastinator's life I missed the chance. I feel a sadness in my heart for the closing of this library. I will miss you, Joe Bageant. (1946-2011)


The Last Supper

Another fish head in the dust bin
Another loser in the cue for the soup kitchen
Another reason for a visit
We think you better come down
Another nigger on the wood pile
Another honky on the dole
Another trip from off the 15th floor

The greatest story ever told
Was so wrong
So wrong

Cause you promised milk and honey
And an everlasting life
But we listened with our ears closed
And a blindness in our eyes

But we heard them as they nailed you
And we saw you crucified

The second coming of the holy ghost
We need a pocket full of miracles
2,000 years and he ain't shown yet
We kept his seat warm and the table set

The second sitting for the Last Supper

Another guru in the money
Another mantra in the mail
An easy way from rags to riches
God's little acre's up for sale
The time is right for resurrection
We think you better come down
The church don't ring with Hallelujahs!

10cc The Original Soundtrack


The Story in Your Eyes

Feed on this oh wonderful big boy pants wearers...


Spinning Wheels

Damned if we do and damned if we don't... I believe I will side with the lesser of two evils because that is the way of the world in an adversarial system. We will never perceive exceptions when our view is limited by dichotomies that are created by monsters. Hope is forlorn.
Middle ground is safe. Down blankets and comforters are warm. Security is food on the table and a roof over one's head. Murder is not acceptable Mr. Pizza Man. We know but we do nothing. Our energies are spent elsewhere. We die for you and we cry because of you; have you no compassion beyond your feebleness or your profit margin?


Angry White Man

There was a time when I cared. It was so long ago I can barely remember. I have tread through this onslaught of what we call life for so long now I can only recall being hopeful. Sad, yes; morbid, no. Similarly, I am not truly angry in the sense that I thrive upon its negative energy, but that I am angry in a disappointed sense. I expected more from my life and as a consequence of that I had expected more from the people I knew. I truly don't know if I have anything left to give except my anger. I hope my anger doesn't frighten you.

I do not fear the future because it terrifies me to an end I have no conception of, nor want to believe. We are not the people we think we are. Our world spins and we laugh and love, cry and smile, eat and play and work. For what? A hope and a prayer we will be left alone? The corruption of our being is nearly complete and all we can do is HOPE we will be left alone. Truly, this is not life. This is not about hate or fear or greed. It is about you and me.

I can no longer rely upon truth to win out over the volume of cacophonous hate spewed upon and around my space. The Nazis were but a focus group for the insanity to come. There are no contingencies of hope for this kind of malevolent planning, nor are there heroes for the darkness they will wrought. I am angry because I saw it and did nothing.