Archive for August, 2010

Mountaintop

August 28, 2010

Mountaintop, a song

Well I walked out,
I walked out to Pisgah mountain.
Well ole Martin Luther King
he’d been up to the mountaintop
and I wanted to see what he had seen.
And ole Moses, oh
he’d been up to the mountaintop,
and I wanted to see what he had seen.
When I reached the top of Pisgah mountain,
what did I see?
I saw a promised land
just waiting for me
and waiting for all of ye.

Well I walked down from the mountain
and into the town.
Well ole Martin Luther King
he’d been to see the big man,
and I wanted to see what he had seen.
and  ole Moses
he’d been to see the pharoah,
and I wanted to see what he had seen;

The promised land is what you make it to be.
Struggle,
struggle to unwind
your unconstant state of mind.
Just take a walk up the mountain, my friend,
and you will see:
what goes on down in that dirty old town
is bound to be.
So you can make up your mind, my friend,
and make it up good.
Are you looking for the promised land?
Or are you dying?
Are you dying
in a wasteland?
’cause I may be asking you now;
I may be asking you,
but some day, Lord yeah,
He’s gonna ask you too
and what you going to say?
What you gon’na say when my Lord comes on that day?

Carey Rowland copyright 1978

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A “Ruling Class”?

August 25, 2010

On the left, and on the right, politicos are grousing about being manipulated by a “ruling class.”
So what else is new. It’s always been that way.

got them sharia-sheddin’ blues again

August 22, 2010

On May 12, 1937, the archbishop of Canterbury placed a crown on the head of a young prince. In that act, the Church of England, a religious authority much stronger and older than any one man, proclaimed George VI the anointed King of Great Britain and its dominions. After the disruptive abdication of former King Edward, the restoration of British royal authority into the hands of a willing sovereign was a welcome relief for the English people. And all was once again well in the realms of the British empire, or so it seemed.

Couple years later, and all hell was breaking loose; the world was falling apart. Britain was fighting for its life to prevent Hitler and his crew of thugs from taking over. The Teutonic madman had usurped governmental authority from the whimpering sovereign of Hohenzollern of Germany,and was running roughshod over civilization, bent on conquering Europe and probably the world if he’d had half a chance.

King George VI of England ultimately had to lean on the common sense and fortitude of his vigorous people, their army, the RAF, and  Winston Churchill’s fierce resolve to prevail against the heathen horde that had sought to subdue them.
After that war to end all wars had subsided, after the Brits had repelled the Nazi war machine away from their obstinate island and had driven their blitzkrieging Nazi asses back into the forlorn fatherland. After that– the English, having received no small measure of assistance from us, the Russians, all our other Allies, even the humbled French– the formerly-fortuitous God-ordained English monarchy commenced to lapsing into a ceremonially opulent impotence.

But the Brits still cherish their Queen.
Even mean Mr. Mustard still loves to go out to Buckingham palace and catch a glimpse of her royalty on the occasional Sunday afternoon. They’re clinging to a vestige of their former magnificence is what it is.

Most folks these days don’t put much stock in that whole theocratic authority trip–divine right of kings and all that. We tossed out those  antiquarian channels of governmental  legitimacy  a century or two back, when We the People, in the interests of  liberté egalité fraternité, supplanted our churchified heritage with the Enlightenment, the Age of Reason, scientific hypothesis, Darwin’s Galopagosic observations, and Einstein’s curved universe of relativity.

Hence has our  hubric secularity  at long last overgrown our outmoded religious foundations. This includes our moral moorings too. Having no basis, except the opinions of mankind, on which to determine what is right or wrong, we have forged a brazen new world in which anything goes–if it feels good do it: off-the-books accounting, infant selection, lady gaga libido, high-frequency-trading on steroids, heavy metal on meth and sado-machismo with online hyper-voyerism to whet the libidinous appetite.

While lapping up all this pleasure, wealth and leisure,  we’ve managed to educate so many people now who’ve gotten the complicated world all figured out; we can view the overthrow of quaint queenly monarchies and past mythologies as progress, societal evolution, and good riddance.

In the midst of such widening post-modernity,  the sun  is definitely  setting on the British empire, if it hasn’t already. And little brother yankee Sam, so bright with energetic potential  in the post-GreatWar suburban expansion, is lapsing into self-absorbed lethargy and self-medicated entitlement depression blues. Consequently, Chinese bureaucrats will soon be calling the shots on how we spend our federal reserve notes, and  the sharp sword of sharia law will eventually slit through our aspinal moral mediocrity, as is now happening among the disoriented, burka-detesting citoyens of  liberated France.

Will our long-sought secularity be any moral match for the long arm of Islamic Law? Will our watered-down, politically correct, hypersensitive “nigger”-eschewing egalitarianism even hold a candle of character to these burka-sizing self-righteous Mohammedans who are determined to compel us infidels to pray five times a day and cover our women so they won’t look like  Marilyn Manson on a bad day or Marilyn Monroe on a good one?

Western culture is on the skids. Where’s some royal dignity when you need it?

That British empire– fading as it is into the dust of history, that obsolete futile monarchy, that despised colonialism which had selfishly sought to sweatshopize the world while claiming to civilize it– that same limey cartographying, meddlesome mandate-making meshugganism– That same British kingdom had, in 1917, cleft ancient Palestine in twain. That same Balfour-declaring  John Bull ridin’ colonializin’ fee fi fo fum empire had allowed a lapsed, stowaway dormant Davidic theocracy– now a left-leaning democracy– to insert itself right smack into the middle of the infidel-whippin’ Mohammedan world. And what a mess it has been since then.

Thanks a lot, England.

Nevertheless, here we are in 2010. Mr. Ahmadinejad is strutting his authoritarian shiite around the world and who knows if the Persians have got evil intentions to nuke Israel or if  Israel’s just paranoid?

Who knew?

God help us.

Thank you, K’Naan

August 17, 2010

Anatomy of a great song, from BBC interview,

and the “for Haiti” version:

‘Isma’il, chill out! Yitzak, go sit in the corner.

August 15, 2010

About 3000 years ago, a Hebrew named Joshua lead his people across the Jordan River, to its west bank, and defeated the native peoples there. It was a tenuous victory that lead to a shaky occupation which is still being uneasily enforced to this day.

1700 or so years later, another leader, Mohammed, was born in nearby Arabia; he initiated Islam, and propelled his followers to a wide swath of military victories in that same region of the world, what we now call the Middle East.

Roughly in the middle of history between these two military victors a man named Jesus was born in the west bank town of Nazareth. He walked around the countryside teaching parabolic truth, preaching life after death with repentance from sins, and telling the locals that they should love and pray for their enemies. He also founded a religion.

Each of these three peoples of the Book has, over time, generated some pretty decent devotees. But each group has also produced a fringe of zealous followers  who thought they were doing God a favor by killing members of the other tribe(s).

In spite of it all, over a few millenia of time,  the human race strove mightily to evolve and improve itself. Two or three hundred years ago, a select group of enlightened Europeans threw off the bloody religion thing altogether and decided to strive for some rationality and order in society instead of the incessant blahblahblah of religion and the constant yadayadayada of dogmatic bickering.

Intelligent people of these modern centuries steadily supplanted the ole time religions with enlightened social and political maneuvering, accompanied by military prowess that turned out to be quite impressive, not to mention pretty damned explosive in its impact upon all mankind.

Consequently, people in our postmodern world have finally come to the realization that religion is obsolete, and even unnecessary.
In recent centuries, folks have had the existential power of dynamic ideologies to infuse meaning and purpose into their lives. Some of these posto-religio movements became, in their heyday, seriously potent in their persuasive encounters with proponents of the opposite purpose. The big clash, of course, has been the whacking of Capitalism’s exploitative hammer against the sharpened sickle of Communism, which produced some freakin’ incendiary sparks on the anvil of tedious time.

But hey, as the tri-pronged dialectic and dwindling resources steadily deter all hot military/industrial wheels from their slow slogging toward destructive fates, even these two C-bound titans of ideology eventually cooled to a smoldering slag of pragmatic society-building, and were cast upon the long and winding road of proletarian planetary progress.
Thus does the dust of  yesterday’s enlightened ideologies settle along the earth-frackin’ faultlines of a brave new, monetizing world. Its a reality check for concerned citizens everywhere, prozac time for zealots.
I mean
Marx is dead. Lenin has bit the dust. Stalin was snuffed out. Hitler fucked himself and his entire nation, along with the whole world. J.D. Rockefeller ran out of dimes; Rhodes toppled from life. Roosevelt went on to that great new deal in the sky.
Nixon and Breshnev fell to a ghastly glasnost in the cold ground. Mao’s in a maosoleum, and one morning in American Reagan didn’t wake up.

Freemarket and statist economic fixes merge under Mr Obama, as they had begun to do under Messers Deng and Gorbachev twenty years ago.
The dust settles. The canon fodder of  cold war dims to a dingy roar of superpower-enabled warlords and puppetary politicoes in distant developing nations.We lift the curtain of rigidly organized contention, open our eyes to a brave new world of perestroika, detente, diplomacy and open doors  and we see in the secularizing wake of the progressive post-20th century world…

It’s the religion, smartypants! Islam vs. Everybody else?

New fire, old ice

August 14, 2010

If Robert Frost were alive today,
he might revise his Fire and Ice;
Just what he’d write I cannot say,
though he may roll over once or twice.

Some say our economy will perish in deflation,
while others will say inflation.
From what I’ve tasted of consumption,
I hold with inflation, as the more likely presumption.
But if I had to stare stagflation down
I think I know enough of unpaid bills
to say deflation does confound
and kills,
and  makes us still recession bound.

Judeo-Christian objectives

August 8, 2010

So here’s the deal.
In the old covenant, Joshua bar Nun lead, by military means, a desperate people into conquest over a bad land.
In the new covenant, Yeshua bar Yahoveh leads, by the holy spirit, a depraved people into conquest over their own bad self.

You gotta know when to hold ’em…

August 2, 2010

Its quite a thrilling game we’ve got going out there; the stakes are higher than ever.
Gary Dorsch wrote this on Seeking Alpha, about the ace up Mr. Bernanke’s sleeve:

“Bernanke acknowledged that the US-economy faces an ‘unusually uncertain time,’ but if necessary, he hinted the central bank would resort to ‘Quantitative Easing,’ (QE), or printing vast quantities of US-dollars, in order to prevent a deflationary spiral.”

What the Fed Chairman should have said is:
Since deflation is now a real threat to the US economy, we now have justification for printing more money, which is what we were going to do anyway.

Or, as the cowboys of the Old West used to say: Ride ’em till they drop.
Or, as the ole dairy farmer used to say: Milk her for all she’s worth.
Or, as the ole truck farmer used to say: There’s only one way to get blood out of a turnip–keep a-squeezin’.

Or, as the young entrepreneur used to say: If life gives you lemons, make lemonaade.
Or, as the Fed now says: If life gives you deflation, make inflation.
Or, as the Chinese bond-buying bureaucrats must surely be a-sayin’: Those Americans, Bernanke and Geithner, are the smoothest poker-playing buckeroos that ever caught a QE ride this side of the Potomac trail.
The poker-faced twins from  the Fed-town sure know how to, as Gary says,  keep their “gunpowder dry.”
It just may work; its how the West was won, and maybe the East too…

CR: Glass half-Full