|This is my collection of random thoughts that may be here solely for the amusement of Erin
Skip to the end. If you do not like this you always leave.
A man's feet should be planted in his country, but his eyes should survey the world.Today's walking music is Elvis Costello Spike, after all "you're nobody till everybody in this town thinks you're a bastard".
-- George Santayana
There are times in politics when you must be on the right side and lose.Sometimes it's the little things.
--John Kenneth Galbraith
The trouble with Lott’s assertion that he liked the Dixiecrats’ other, nonracist ideas was that they didn't have any. So dedicated were they to the cause of preserving Jim Crow that the States’ Righters never bothered to write an actual party platform. Instead they issued a "declaration of principles" that asserted above all, “We stand for the segregation of the races and the racial integrity of each race.Oddly enough, as much as Trent Lott comes off looking like an idiot in this article, the facts about Strom Thurmond are pretty interesting, and he doesn't come off as a complete bigot--despite the Dixiecrats.
But there is another problem with Senator Lott’s protest, something that the national media managed to miss completely. Way back in 1948 Strom Thurmond was a liberal.
What Trent Meant And the real secret in Strom Thurmond’s Past by Kevin Baker
There never was a good war or a bad peaceWhat I've been reading recently....
-- Benjamin Franklin
I sometimes think about this story when I hear people complaining about their elderly parents or grandparents, and wonder what they will be like when they reach that age. If they will remember.
The Old Man and His GrandsonThere was once a very old man, whose eyes had become dim, his ears dull of hearing, his knees trembled, and when he sat at the table he could hardly hold the spoon, and spilled the broth upon the tablecloth or let it run out of his mouth. His son and his son's wife were disgusted at this, so the old grandfather at last had to sit in the corner behind the stove, and they gave him his food in an earthenware bowl, and not enough of it. And he used to look towards the table with his eyes full of tears. Once, too, his trembling hands could not hold the bowl, and it fell to the ground and broke. The young wife scolded him, but he said nothing and only sighed. Then they bought him a wooden bowl for a few halfpence, out of which he had to eat.
They were once sitting thus when the little grandson of four began to gather together some bits of wood upon the ground. "What are you doing?" asked the father. "I am making a little trough," answered the child, "for Father and Mother to eat out of when I am big."
The man and his wife looked at each other for a while, and presently began to cry. Then they took the grandfather to the table, and henceforth always let him eat with them, and likewise said nothing if he did spill a little of anything.
Those Stubborn Souls, the BielleseA farmer was on his way down to Biella one day. The weather was so stormy that it was next to impossible to get over the roads. But the farmer had important business and pushed onward in the face of the driving rain.
He met an old man, who said to him, "A good day to you! Where are you going, my good man, in such haste?"
"To Biella," answered the farmer without slowing down.
"You might at least say. 'God willing.'"
The farmer stopped, looked the old man in the eye and snapped, "God willing, I'm on my way to Biella. But even if God isn't willing, I still have to go there all the same."
Now the old man happened to be the Lord. "In that case you'll go to Biella in seven years."
Suddenly the farmer changed into a frog and jumped into the swamp.
Seven years went by. The farmer came out of the swamp, turned back into a man, clapped his hat on his head, and continued on his way to market.
After a short distance he met the old man again. "And where are you going, my good man?"
"You might say, 'God willing.'"
"If God wills it, fine. If not I know the consequence and can now go into the swamp unassisted."
Nor for the life of him would he say one word more.
Support the Warrior Not the War: Give Them Their Benefits!Ah yes, rally around the troops--until they come home and need care.
"The House of Representatives have recently voted on the 2004 budget which will cut funding for veteran's health care and benefit programs by nearly $25 billion over the next ten years. It narrowly passed by a vote of 215 to 212, and came just a day after Congress passed a resolution to "Support Our Troops." How exactly does this vote support our troops? Does leaving our current and future veterans veterans without access to health care and compensation qualify as supporting them?...
...The Bush Administration recently ordered V.A. medical centers to stop publicizing available benefits to veterans seeking assistance. This follows discontinued enrollments of some eligible veterans for healthcare benefits as of January, 2003."
If blood will flow when flesh and steel are one
Drying in the colour of the evening sun
Tomorrow's rain will wash the stains away
But something in our minds will always stay
Perhaps this final act was meant
To clinch a lifetime's argument
That nothing comes from violence and nothing ever could
For all those born beneath an angry star
Lest we forget how fragile we are
On and on the rain will fall
Like tears from a star, like tears from a star
On and on the rain will say
How fragile we are, how fragile we are
"Fragile" by Sting
Main Entry: 1en·dem·ic
Pronunciation: en-'de-mik, in-
Etymology: French endémique, from endémie endemic disease, from Greek endEmia action of dwelling, from endEmos endemic, from en in + dEmos people, populace -- more at DEMAGOGUE
1 a : belonging or native to a particular people or country b : characteristic of or prevalent in a particular field, area, or environment [problems endemic to translation] [the self-indulgence endemic in the film industry]
2 : restricted or peculiar to a locality or region [endemic diseases] [an endemic species]
synonym see NATIVE
Political power grows out of the barrel of a gun
Main Entry: ubiq·ui·tousI got an 97 on my Stats exam! Yeah! Of course this doesn't sound that impressive unless you know that I am absolutely terrible with simple math, and one of my errors last time was multiplying 6 and 4 and getting 36. No, I don't know how I do it, it just happens. So anyway, I'm pleased with myself, and it's nice to have good news in the middle of the day.
: existing or being everywhere at the same time : constantly encountered : WIDESPREAD
- ubiq·ui·tous·ly adverb
- ubiq·ui·tous·ness noun
How different the new order would be if we could consult the veteran and instead of the politicianIvy sent me this, I'm quoting only a portion and the providing a link to the rest. But I thought it was well worth sharing.
The 70th anniversary wasn't noticed in the United States, and was barely reported in the corporate media. But the Germans remembered well that fateful day seventy years ago - February 27, 1933. They commemorated the anniversary by joining in demonstrations for peace that mobilized citizens all across the world.To read the entire essay, please visit When Democracy Failed: The Warnings of History by Thom Hartmann at Common Dreams
It started when the government, in the midst of a worldwide economic crisis, received reports of an imminent terrorist attack. A foreign ideologue had launched feeble attacks on a few famous buildings, but the media largely ignored his relatively small efforts. The intelligence services knew, however, that the odds were he would eventually succeed. (Historians are still arguing whether or not rogue elements in the intelligence service helped the terrorist; the most recent research implies they did not.)
But the warnings of investigators were ignored at the highest levels, in part because the government was distracted; the man who claimed to be the nation's leader had not been elected by a majority vote and the majority of citizens claimed he had no right to the powers he coveted. He was a simpleton, some said, a cartoon character of a man who saw things in black-and-white terms and didn't have the intellect to understand the subtleties of running a nation in a complex and internationalist world. His coarse use of language - reflecting his political roots in a southernmost state - and his simplistic and often-inflammatory nationalistic rhetoric offended the aristocrats, foreign leaders, and the well-educated elite in the government and media. And, as a young man, he'd joined a secret society with an occult-sounding name and bizarre initiation rituals that involved skulls and human bones.
Nonetheless, he knew the terrorist was going to strike (although he didn't know where or when), and he had already considered his response. When an aide brought him word that the nation's most prestigious building was ablaze, he verified it was the terrorist who had struck and then rushed to the scene and called a press conference.
"You are now witnessing the beginning of a great epoch in history," he proclaimed, standing in front of the burned-out building, surrounded by national media. "This fire," he said, his voice trembling with emotion, "is the beginning." He used the occasion - "a sign from God," he called it - to declare an all-out war on terrorism and its ideological sponsors, a people, he said, who traced their origins to the Middle East and found motivation for their evil deeds in their religion.
Similarly, Republicans have overtly used third-party participation on the left to their advantage. In a July 12, 2002 story in the Washington Post titled "GOP Figure Behind Greens Offer, N.M. Official Says," Post writer Thomas B. Edsall noted that: "The chairman of the Republican Party of New Mexico said yesterday he was approached by a GOP figure who asked him to offer the state Green Party at least $100,000 to run candidates in two contested congressional districts in an effort to divide the Democratic vote."How To Take Back America by Thom Hartmann at Common Dreams
The Republicans well understand - and carefully use - the fact that in the American electoral system a third-party candidate will always harm the major-party candidate with whom s/he is most closely aligned.
Main Entry: orthographic projectionMore on orthographic drawings.
1 : projection of a single view of an object (as a view of the front) onto a drawing surface in which the lines of projection are perpendicular to the drawing surface
2 : the representation of related views of an object as if they were all in the same plane and projected by orthographic projection
In addition to the provisions which shall be implemented in peace time, the present Convention shall apply to all cases of declared war or of any other armed conflict which may arise between two or more of the High Contracting Parties, even if the state of war is not recognized by one of them. (Article 2)I heard something interesting, in passing, yesterday or the day before, regarding the U.S. Press photographing Iraqi POWs and the gentleman (no, I don't know who) made the point that by doing so, in some instance they could be placing the families of those prisoners in danger, for the military/government/dictator might kill their families in retribution. This may not be too far out in left field for our current situation, for I remember reading something about Iraqi orders to shoot all surrendering Iraqi soldiers in the back.
In the case of armed conflict not of an international character occurring in the territory of one of the High Contracting Parties, each party to the conflict shall be bound to apply, as a minimum, the following provisions:
1. Persons taking no active part in the hostilities, including members of armed forces who have laid down their arms and those placed hors de combat by sickness, wounds, detention, or any other cause, shall in all circumstances be treated humanely, without any adverse distinction founded on race, colour, religion or faith, sex, birth or wealth, or any other similar criteria.
To this end the following acts are and shall remain prohibited at any time and in any place whatsoever with respect to the above-mentioned persons:(a) Violence to life and person, in particular murder of all kinds, mutilation, cruel treatment and torture;
(b) Taking of hostages;
(c) Outrages upon personal dignity, in particular, humiliating and degrading treatment;
(d) The passing of sentences and the carrying out of executions without previous judgment pronounced by a regularly constituted court affording all the judicial guarantees which are recognized as indispensable by civilized peoples. (Article 3)
It is well that war is so terrible; else we could grow too fond of it.This is very amusing--one can almost imagine that he would sound like that. Found on Letters from Gotham.
--Robert E. Lee
A vote is like a rifle: its usefulness depends upon the character of the userSomething Mark said today bothered me, but I couldn't really forment a response at the time. (Things were a little hectic. That's my excuse anyway.) It doesn't matter that we have an all volunteer army. I do not believe that our soldiers join the army for reasons of brutality or violence, though some very small minority may. And it certainly isn't for the pay...
- Theodore Roosevelt "Autobiography"
In today's military a young enlisted person serving out his or her first contract can expect to make one thousand, seventy-five dollars and eighty cents a month.I believe that those who volunteer for military service do so for the same reason that people become teachers or firemen (don't forget that the ranks of WV's fire departments and emergency personnel and police forces, have been seriously thinned, for so many are reservists who have now been called to active duty) and that is to serve their country and to help others. So to say that they volunteered for military service belittles why so many are there.
Over a forty-hour workweek,this averages to six dollars and seventy cents an hour. But most of our military personnel don't work forty-hour weeks. We all remember the famous Army slogan-"We do more before 900 a.m. than most people do all day."
---Representative Helen Chenoweth May 20, 1999
The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands
in moments of comfort, but where he stands at times
of challenge and controversy.
-- Martin Luther King, Jr.
While you're saving face you're losing your ass.The New York Times, in one of it's slide shows, has a picture of "Kenneth Watersbey, 10, with a picture of his father, Staff Sgt. Kendall Damon Watersbey, 29, of Baltimore. Sergeant Watersbey was one of three Americans and eight British soldiers killed when their helicopter went down in Kuwait." How many more children will there be by the end of this, here and in Iraq, mourning their parents? Will this number be fewer than the number that would exist if we left had chosen not to declare war on Iraq?
--President Lyndon Johnson (1908-1973)
What luck for the rulers that men do not think.It's Friday of spring break, there's no one around (I should have taken the whole week off. I just wasn't thinking), so I'm listening to the radio, but wondering if that is really what I want to be doing. Last night I turned off the news and played CDs, because I just didn't want to listen to any more news about death and destruction, but part of me is paranoid that I'm missing something important, though thinking logically, if something major were to happen, I am quite sure that someone would call and tell me, so it's just that paranoia thing again. Of course even the news of the war in Iraq is better than listening to nothing, which is my other alternative.
-- Adolf Hitler
I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just.
The president looks in the mirror and speaksBombs Away The Police (1980)
His shirts are clean but his country reeks
But we're okay
Odd picture day
|I bought this postcard a couple years ago, and it just makes me laugh whenever I look at it. The photographer's website is B&B Studios.|