April 18, 2019 ‘Easter 1916’ -W.B. Yeats

I have met them at close of day
Coming with vivid faces
From counter or desk among grey
Eighteenth-century houses.
I have passed with a nod of the head
Or polite meaningless words,
Or have lingered awhile and said
Polite meaningless words,
And thought before I had done
Of a mocking tale or a gibe
To please a companion
Around the fire at the club,
Being certain that they and I
But lived where motley is worn:
All changed, changed utterly:
A terrible beauty is born.

That woman’s days were spent
In ignorant good-will,
Her nights in argument
Until her voice grew shrill.
What voice more sweet than hers
When, young and beautiful,
She rode to harriers?
This man had kept a school
And rode our wingèd horse;
This other his helper and friend
Was coming into his force;
He might have won fame in the end,
So sensitive his nature seemed,
So daring and sweet his thought.
This other man I had dreamed
A drunken, vainglorious lout.
He had done most bitter wrong
To some who are near my heart,
Yet I number him in the song;
He, too, has resigned his part
In the casual comedy;
He, too, has been changed in his turn,
Transformed utterly:
A terrible beauty is born.

Hearts with one purpose alone
Through summer and winter seem
Enchanted to a stone
To trouble the living stream.
The horse that comes from the road,
The rider, the birds that range
From cloud to tumbling cloud,
Minute by minute they change;
A shadow of cloud on the stream
Changes minute by minute;
A horse-hoof slides on the brim,
And a horse plashes within it;
The long-legged moor-hens dive,
And hens to moor-cocks call;
Minute by minute they live:
The stone’s in the midst of all.

Too long a sacrifice
Can make a stone of the heart.
O when may it suffice?
That is Heaven’s part, our part
To murmur name upon name,
As a mother names her child
When sleep at last has come
On limbs that had run wild.
What is it but nightfall?
No, no, not night but death;
Was it needless death after all?
For England may keep faith
For all that is done and said.
We know their dream; enough
To know they dreamed and are dead;
And what if excess of love
Bewildered them till they died?
I write it out in a verse—
MacDonagh and MacBride
And Connolly and Pearse
Now and in time to be,
Wherever green is worn,
Are changed, changed utterly:
A terrible beauty is born.

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Torches Trump For Shutdown In First House Floor Speech

Rcooley123's Blog

Good to see at least some of the Freshmen Congressional Representatives are taking their new jobs seriously. When will the President and GOP Congressional leadership start doing likewise? There seems to be little or no empathy between them and the Federal Government employees who are either furloughed or working without pay – let alone their dependents and others sorely in need of their services. – rjc

To our absentee government:

Do your jobs. End the shutdown. Negotiate a solution to the immigration laws and policies so desperately in need of reform. Stop treating good, hard-working government workers like hostages and pawns in your never-ending quest to concentrate wealth and political power in the hands of fewer and fewer elites regardless of how that agenda affects the vast majority of Americans and even those living abroad.

Source: Rep. Ocasio-Cortez torches Trump in fiery House speech Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez used her inaugural…

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2018 Recap: Ch-ch-ch-anges

In a world where idiots have megaphones, it’s nice to smart men still can have a blog. If something happens this year and Trump’s gallup flies high, signifying the New (Authoritarian) World Order, I’m sure this site will be deleted for obvious reasons. The unbridled and unapologetic posts of our president are everything our press wishes they could say, but can’t. Partly due to pure intellectual prowess and just sheer talent, and partly bc the censors. Then still, part is just the ability to truly disrespect the office, which I cannot yet do, but will be completely capable of the by the end of this presidency.  It’s been a treasure trove for me, Wesley, and never fails to exhilarate with each new issue.  When I first discover another addition has been posted, it feels just like receiving a paper I know I aced.  Merry Christmas my friend!  To 2019!

You Do Hoodoo?

Click fiend that I am, I’ve decided to once again do a round-up, a sort of greatest hits [insert ironic cough] of the pieces I posted this year, significantly fewer than in years of yore (67 to be exact, as opposed to 141 in 2016 and 142 last year).

So hold onto your hats or toupees or do rags; here we go.

January

Miles Davis at the Vancouver International Jazz Festival, 1986

For whatever reason, in January I wrote mostly about music, an appreciation of a Miles Davis/John Coltrane videoof “So What?” and a profile of two contemporary artists I admire, John Hiattand Lucinda Williams. My favorite, however, is this meditationon the distinction between verse and poetry.

February

I only published three posts in our shortest month, the best two, I think, a short memoir celebrating lethargy  and a paean to Ireland that I composed after…

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After listening to “Detailing America’s role in the world’s worst crisis with Shireen Al-Adeimi” on Why Is This Happening 1., I needed this and my wish was granted — though I did not command it✌🏻https://youtu.be/NLhXal4yO4A I’m sorry, but I don’t want to be an emperor. That’s not my business. I don’t want to rule or conquer anyone. I should like to help everyone – if possible – Jew, Gentile – black man – white. We all want to help one another. Human beings are like that. We want to live by each other’s happiness – not by each other’s misery. We don’t want to hate and despise one another. In this world there is room for everyone. And the good earth is rich and can provide for everyone. The way of life can be free and beautiful, but we have lost the way. Greed has poisoned men’s souls, has barricaded the world with hate, has goose-stepped us into misery and bloodshed. We have developed speed, but we have shut ourselves in. Machinery that gives abundance has left us in want. Our knowledge has made us cynical. Our cleverness, hard and unkind. We think too much and feel too little. More than machinery we need humanity. More than cleverness we need kindness and gentleness. Without these qualities, life will be violent and all will be lost…. The aeroplane and the radio have brought us closer together. The very nature of these inventions cries out for the goodness in men – cries out for universal brotherhood – for the unity of us all. Even now my voice is reaching millions throughout the world – millions of despairing men, women, and little children – victims of a system that makes men torture and imprison innocent people. To those who can hear me, I say – do not despair. The misery that is now upon us is but the passing of greed – the bitterness of men who fear the way of human progress. The hate of men will pass, and dictators die, and the power they took from the people will return to the people. And so long as men die, liberty will never perish. ….. Soldiers! don’t give yourselves to brutes – men who despise you – enslave you – who regiment your lives – tell you what to do – what to think and what to feel! Who drill you – diet you – treat you like cattle, use you as cannon fodder. Don’t give yourselves to these unnatural men – machine men with machine minds and machine hearts! You are not machines! You are not cattle! You are men! You have the love of humanity in your hearts! You don’t hate! Only the unloved hate – the unloved and the unnatural! Soldiers! Don’t fight for slavery! Fight for liberty! In the 17th Chapter of St Luke it is written: “the Kingdom of God is within man” – not one man nor a group of men, but in all men! In you! You, the people have the power – the power to create machines. The power to create happiness! You, the people, have the power to make this life free and beautiful, to make this life a wonderful adventure. Then – in the name of democracy – let us use that power – let us all unite. Let us fight for a new world – a decent world that will give men a chance to work – that will give youth a future and old age a security. By the promise of these things, brutes have risen to power. But they lie! They do not fulfil that promise. They never will! Dictators free themselves but they enslave the people! Now let us fight to fulfil that promise! Let us fight to free the world – to do away with national barriers – to do away with greed, with hate and intolerance. Let us fight for a world of reason, a world where science and progress will lead to all men’s happiness. Soldiers! in the name of democracy, let us all unite! Final speech from The Great Dictator Copyright © Roy Export S.A.S. All rights reserved The Great Dictator was Chaplin’s first film with dialogue. Chaplin plays both a little Jewish barber, living in the ghetto, and Hynkel, the dictator ruler of Tomainia. In his autobiography Chaplin quotes himself as having said: “One doesn’t have to be a Jew to be anti Nazi. All one has to be is a normal decent human being.” Chaplin and Hitler were born within a week of one another. “There was something uncanny in the resemblance between the Little Tramp and Adolf Hitler, representing opposite poles of humanity, ” writes Chaplin biographer David Robinson, reproducing an unsigned article from The Spectator dated 21st April 1939: “Providence was in an ironical mood when, fifty years ago this week, it was ordained that Charles Chaplin and Adolf Hitler should make their entry into the world within four days of each other….Each in his own way has expressed the ideas, sentiments, aspirations of the millions of struggling citizens ground between the upper and the lower millstone of society. (…) Each has mirrored the same reality – the predicament of the “little man” in modern society. Each is a distorting mirror, the one for good, the other for untold evil.” Regrettably Chaplin’s words are as relevant today as they were in 1940. 1.https://www.nbcnews.com/think/why-is-this-happening-chris-hayes-podcast 2. Transcript of Charlie Chaplin’s Final Speech in The Great Dictator https://www.charliechaplin.com The Killswitch1

Pitchfork Tillman. “Rest in Beast Mode” When We All Vote (@WhenWeAllVote) Tweeted: Your vote is your voice. #WhenWeAllVote, we all do better. Register and volunteer at https://t.co/TgXnKAE7g8. https://t.co/sYAxRGFNjd https://twitter.com/WhenWeAllVote/status/1019952118839427074?s=17

Idky I took this photo of Tillman, but he is a frightening looking man…  especially since appears so large in the statue.  It only fits that he is the figure we welcome others with as they walk into the Statehouse. via Birthday Murmurs

The Socratic method, or Socratic debate, is a form of cooperative argumentative dialogue between individuals, based on asking and answering questions to stimulate critical thinking and to draw out ideas and underlying presumptions. It is a dialectical method, involving a discussion in which the defense of one point of view is questioned; one participant may lead another to contradict themselves in some way, thus weakening the defender’s point. This method is named after the Classical Greek philosopher Socrates and is introduced by him in Plato’s Theaetetus as midwifery (maieutics) because it is employed to bring out definitions implicit in the interlocutors’ beliefs, or to help them further their understanding.

“And during the last decades of the 20th century, the progressive, democratic vision that Nelson Mandela represented in many ways set the terms of international political debate. It doesn’t mean that vision was always victorious, but it set the terms, the parameters; it guided how we thought about the meaning of progress, and it continued to propel the world forward. Yes, there were still tragedies — bloody civil wars from the Balkans to the Congo. Despite the fact that ethnic and sectarian strife still flared up with heartbreaking regularity, despite all that as a consequence of the continuation of nuclear detente, and a peaceful and prosperous Japan, and a unified Europe anchored in NATO, and the entry of China into the world’s system of trade — all that greatly reduced the prospect of war between the world’s great powers. And from Europe to Africa, Latin America, Southeast Asia, dictatorships began to give way to democracies. The march was on. A respect for human rights and the rule of law, enumerated in a declaration by the United Nations, became the guiding norm for the majority of nations, even in places where the reality fell far short of the ideal. Even when those human rights were violated, those who violated human rights were on the defensive. And with these geopolitical changes came sweeping economic changes. The introduction of market-based principles, in which previously closed economies along with the forces of global integration powered by new technologies, suddenly unleashed entrepreneurial talents to those that once had been relegated to the periphery of the world economy, who hadn’t counted. Suddenly, they counted. They had some power; they had the possibilities of doing business. And then came scientific breakthroughs and new infrastructure and the reduction of armed conflicts. And suddenly a billion people were lifted out of poverty, and once-starving nations were able to feed themselves, and infant mortality rates plummeted. And meanwhile, the spread of the Internet made it possible for people to connect across oceans, and cultures and continents instantly were brought together, and potentially, all the world’s knowledge could be in the hands of a small child in even the most remote village. That’s what happened just over the course of a few decades. And all that progress is real. It has been broad, and it has been deep, and it all happened in what — by the standards of human history — was nothing more than a blink of an eye. And now an entire generation has grown up in a world that by most measures has gotten steadily freer and healthier and wealthier and less violent and more tolerant during the course of their lifetimes.” -_- who else could grace the stage in the middle of July in 2018.