A Brief History of the World, Winston Smith edition

First, according to astrophysicists, there was nothing. Nada. Zilch. Tabula rasa. Then that nothingness somehow exploded. Can you say big bang? Congratulations! To, uh, whatever produced the big bang, as it gave birth to what is referred to as the universe. According to scientific investigation, that was approximately 13.8 billion years ago. Then, around 13 billion years ago, the first stars begin to burn, their glow taking its sweet time to reach…well “us”; but let’s not get too far ahead here since “us” at this point in the life of the universe is still WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAY off.

Moving on, about 4.6 billion years ago our solar system begins to come together and with it the birth our life-sustaining sun. Earth is about 4.5 billion years old, and thus one of the charter members of our universe, which early on had no stars or planets. Stars were forged from atoms of hydrogen and helium, while new chemical elements were created inside the dying stars (birth and death, it’s inescapable, eh?). Planets and moons formed from blobs of ice and dust using these new chemicals and elements, and the first living cell evolved in the rich chemical environments of rocky planets.

Then, 3.8 billion years ago, comes the earliest forms of life on our very special planet we call Earth. These were mostly single cell life forms. Not too sophisticated but, hey, back then they were the entire show. And that “show” was a long-running production, with virtually zero competition for attention for the next 3.2 billion years. Okay, so let’s do the math: 3.2 billion from 3.8 billion=600 million , as in years ago, larger life forms appear. Those bigger living things had the stage for a mere 593 million (or so) years, when ‘only” 7 million years back our human lineage splits from that of the Chimpanzee. That “break-away” from the chimp world, over the next 5 million years, produced the–ta da!–homo erectus. This new “standing man” then becomes the species known as Homo sapiens, a classification that is marked at about at 200,000 years ago. Hey, from Big Bang 13.8 biillion years back to standing man. In a mere 12,999,800,000 years. 

Or, in just three paragraphs on this blog entry.

A brief history, okay?

Standing man hasn’t always had it easy, though. Life was rough and tumble. Maslow’s pyramid of ascending needs would have to have several sub-basements to signify the ordeal of simply staying alive back in that day. Today’s homeless population live elite lifestyles compared to Homo neanderthalensis. Basic food and shelter? Life was always a bitch, no doubt. And then, as already noted, they would die. But enough of standing man got off his/her feet to copulate and Homo sapiens endured, right through the last ICE AGE, some 10,000 years ago. After that frosty kick in the loin cloth-covered asses of our species by the forces of nature, it was but 5,000 years ago that cities began to appear on the planet. 3,000 years later, standing man had developed its survival instincts and desire to be the masters of their–and other’s–domains, with the Han and Roman empires. Little by little, by about 500 years ago, exploration and discovery by our species started to link the world together. For better or worse. Mostly worse, in my estimation.

Formal knowledge, the refinement of arts and sciences, elevated our human place on planet earth. In the past 150 years industrialization has given us railroads, jet airplanes, radio and television and space travel. Just 50 years ago we landed on the moon, an event that for a brief moment in time, was at once inspirational and mesmerizing in its realization, and as such, transcended race, ethnicity, or nationality in a most powerful and positive sense of shared pride in our humanity. And it was quite a momentary antidote to a world in which over the previous 200 or so years having been marred by revolutionary wars here and abroad, the U.S.civil war, World Wars I & II, (the latter of which produced an another awesome, if not a Kumbaya, event called the creation–and deployment–of the atomic bomb), the Korean and Vietnam wars, and at this point in time bloodshed far and wide. More empires. Less humanism.

Now, here we are early in the first month of year 2019. Unless you are one of the Homo sapiens that has succumbed to a de-evolutionary modus operandi, and cannot think on your own, unable to truly engage your brain, not able to determine basic right from wrong, nor distinguish a stone cold fact from an inference to a bald face lie, you might have heard about, and perhaps become concerned for our planet, all 4.6 billion years old as it is. What am I getting at? Well, while the Big Bang theory says we came from nothing, (go figure) ever since, and as been alluded to earlier, all forms of life on this planet come and go. You know, born to die. In comparison to mother earth, we are all around for a nano second of a wee smaller nanosecond of a fraction of a fraction of a blink of an eye. Hope to live to be 110? No different. By the time you were born to your demise, you (all of us, okay?) relatively speaking were barely here at all! But reproduction keeps humankind around, whether one is using that brain very well or not. Among the scientists whom are most involved with the life span of our planet–which, mind you, is inevitably as with all else, going to die–they assert we have reached an “existential crisis”. It’s called climate change. And the virtual consensus of climate scientists is that our planet is sick. Very sick. Human activity is hastening our planet’s demise–and standing man and woman will eventually pass away when the sphere beneath our feet no longer can support itself, or us.

What are we humans doing about this crisis? Apparently not much. Certainly not nearly enough. In the decade that ran from 1979-1989 we had an excellent opportunity to solve this climate crisis. The world’s major powers came within several signatures of endorsing a binding, global framework to reduce carbon emissions–far closer than we have ever come since. During those years, the conditions for success could not have been more favorable. The obstacles we blame for that inaction are still emerging. But now, as back then, the only thing standing in the way of saving the planet is…ourselves.

And by ourselves, I include a particular person who is an avowed science-denier when it comes to looming climate collapse: this person is deeply, profoundly flawed. Okay, nobody is perfect but…this person is a sociopath. This person is a racist. Indeed, he is a white supremacist. He is a misogynist. A homophobe. A xenophobe. A failed businessman. A con man. As bad as all that is, the worst part is he has been allowed to be the President of our country. Oh, and one who may have colluded with Mother Russia and its evil strongman, V. Putin, during his campaign. This man is not helping with much except to create chaos and consternation among critical thinkers. Sadly, this person has followers. I call them “pod people” (after the people in Invasion of the Body Snatchers whose beings are overtaken by insidious pods being slipped near them as they slumbered, to awake and become zombie like automatons in the grip of alien forces). Today’s Pod People have brains, but they are a waste of gray matter. Podsters don’t seem to care about anything but what their “leader” thinks and does. But more than any creepy flaw he has clearly displayed, it’s that science-denying one that is the most dangerous here, in 2019.

Sadly, in my informed, personal opinion, it may be 2019, but I’m beginning to feel as though it is really 1984. As in the dystopian world penned by George Orwell in 1949, shortly after the carnage of World War II. In it, Orwell created Big Brother. A glossary of terms from that seminal novel would include, doublethink, hate week, newspeak, speakwrite, thought police, and thoughtcrime. Doesn’t sound like a Disney narrative, eh? Now, I am not saying we are actually immersed in Orwell’s nightmare vision of the future, as he saw it back in 1949, but there are indications that, since our current occupant of the White House took residence there in January of 2017, it certainly sounds and seems as though we are getting closer to an Orwellian nightmare than safely secured from any such approximation of it.

For example, a few nights ago, the corporate, mainstream media once again demonstrated its collusion in this country’s ever-increasing descent into creepy, dark political cynicism. How so? By granting a prominent platform for the dissemination of blatant propaganda and fear mongering by the above alluded to White House denizen.

The various major media outlets, both broadcast and cable, were asked to permit this person, who has been clearly and credibly identified as a bona-fide, dissembling demagogue to speak to we the people. The heads of these news outlets could not possibly have acted any more irresponsibly by agreeing to provide prime-time coverage for this person and his intended reason for seeking their assistance. After all, he was not addressing the vital–and ever more desperate–need for climate action. Of course not. He, at best, willfully denies the reality of climate change, or actually is unable to process the credible evidence that has been around for-as noted–several decades by now. He wasn’t talking about making healthcare more affordable for all of we the people, nor was he addressing the need for more affordable means of getting a college education. He wasn’t announcing a plan to address re-building our rotting national infrastructure, or creating a living wage policy to help the average person make ends meet without working two or more jobs.

No, he was given the national airwaves to potentially enter into the living rooms–Little Brother?–of every household, to demand several billion dollars for a “wall” to separate the U.S. from its neighboring countries to the south. He claimed–without evidence– that the border is not secure, and that those coming here included rapists, murderers, drug dealers and terrorists. All while our federal government has been shut down for almost three weeks as a means of showing he means business.

The Orwellian part of his being on the airwaves so pervasively is that there was no obligation on the part of the media to grant him time to spew his nonsense, all of which is at the expense of that evidence-based existential crisis known as the climate crisis that increasingly threatens our planet. The heads of each of those major media outlets could have easily declared his request as being so blatantly a political stunt that they could not possibly be so irresponsible as to let him have the airwaves to advance its unworthiness. The fact that they didn’t is extremely disturbing.

Orwell’s book, by the way, has become something of a new best seller in the past couple of years. Art imitates life? Ugh. Well, we’re not that far gone yet, but the media created this orange-hued occupant of the White House, and it could destroy him just as easily. We don’t have to listen to him even if the media continues to provide a platform for further prevarication, division and hate speech. But we shouldn’t have to willfully ignore what should never have been allowed to become a reality in the first place. What happened on Tuesday evening was a dangerous symptom of incipient Orwellianism, in my estimation.

After 4.6 billion years, here we are, my fellow Homo Sapiens. We are the problem. Of course we are. We must have asked for this or else why has it become a reality? When did basic right and wrong become so jumbled in so many people’s minds? How can we be so easily led astray? Who and what are we paying attention to? So, as mother earth continues to wheeze and convulse, the clock is ticking. You can take time out for a break, but you can’t take a break from time, right? I’d say, time to take a break from taking break from thinking about the present and the future. You can change the dial, or turn off that tv, leave cyberspace and connect with reality. I mean, can’t we do better than this? This is what we have evolved into since leaving Chimp World?

4.6 billion years from nothing to the moon and back. And it was televised! Now, our media has become a tool for misinformation, disinformation, insipid celebrity cults, bread and circuses. It is everywhere and nowhere. Newspeak. Doublethink. Hate week. Thoughtcrime. Far fetched? Let’s hope so. But sometimes, lately, I feel a bit like Orwell’s protagonist, Winston Smith in 1984. But I’m hoping for a happier ending than Winston’s.

If your brain is critically engaged and your eyes wide open, I’d say you–as I–are all incipiently becoming Mr.Smith.

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A Horse Named Ghost

Allow me to once again beat the crap out of a long dead horse. This particular dead horse passed on 40 years ago or so, and so one might think me a bit unable to leave the creature dead and buried, once and for all. However, it’s just too important to not again put the carcass of the deceased on display at this specific point in time, because while the horse may be passed on, it hovers about, haunting millions of people, many of whom bet on it over and over only to keep watching it lose race after crucial race, losing by not knowing how to win, and at times behaving in so docile a manner that the notion of winning when it counted most was seemingly not a matter of urgency or importance. It once did know how to win. But again, that was over forty years ago, at a minimum, possibly 50 or more years ago. And right now, the spectre of this creature is so intensely insinuating itself into our daily lives that–whether one knows it or not–it would appear to be intent on reminding us of what a tragedy it’s demise represented, and what its passing constantly keeps reminding the majority of we the people of

Okay, enough with a metaphorical dead horse. But I think it’s an apt metaphor for——-the Democratic Party. I guess I should use a donkey as the four-legged metaphor, but “beating a dead horse” is an established descriptor of my mojo here. The literal meaning of the horse metaphor is that it is a waste of time to do so, as the dead horse will not work just because you beat it. The Democratic Party is not going to work any better if I or millions of others keep beating it. It is a DEAD HORSE. How-ever. Until the goddam corpse is not worth beating anymore, as in it has been replaced by a functioning, capable, savvy horse, willing to try its best to win winnable races, to fight and forge evermore ahead in the race, then let the desecration continue.

Right now, in late September of 2020, this is what the failed Democratic Party has managed to usher into our lives through its contemporary mojo of incompetency, corrupted ideology, and a collusive and capitulatory modus operandi: It stupefyingly lost the 2016 election to a now irrefutably intellectually bankrupt, self-styled autocratic flim-flam man, a mysogynistic cretin who overtly sexualizes his own daughter, who by edict separates–likely forever–immigrant children from their parents, who wantonly ignores science–immunological and climate related– and who has all but guaranteed he will refuse to leave office should he lose the election. Many people saw his garish character flaws years ago, and certainly so did the DNC in 2016 when it absurdly took it for granted that Hillary Clinton simply could not lose to a reality TV show host.

To go back to the dead horse theme, the 2016 election was as though the DNC’s pony in this race started out of the gate with a 20 length lead, and then the horse became bored, its sense of purpose supplanted by self-delusional invincibility. But then again, if the DNC was her handler, it was inevitable that it would lose, since that is what the DNC gives us: losers. Clinton and Obama? Towering statesmen compared to the serial ignoramus in the oval office, but both capitulated, compromised and ultimately accommodated a GOP agenda that has forever catered to a tiny fraction of the public at the expense of the greater good. Clinton and Obama both placed corporate interests over all else. Clinton signed off on gutting much of the social welfare programs that were vital to those already victimized by social and financial inequality. Obama refused to hold to account the Wall Street hucksters that cost so many their jobs, pensions and homes related to the 2008 market meltdown. FDR still spins in his grave.

Now, after almost four years of the dangerous disgrace that is our current national ruling party, it boggles the mind that the Democrats, rather than being able to project a superiority to the freak show that basically wipes its ass with the Constitution, that constantly crosses legal lines with impunity, that unabashedly rigs local, statewide and national vote counts, finds itself again playing defense or worse, being unable to prevent yet another gross abuse of power by the GOP. The failed DNC apparently has no ability to block the egregious power grabs of what soon will be a second, radical-right wing SCOTUS nominee from being confirmed. 

They have no power to stop this power grab because they can’t manage to win enough senate seats to have a majority. Never mind having a majority. The Democrats, back in 1991, with a 57-43 senate advantage, approved putting a right-wing nominee named Clarence Thomas on the Court, in spite of Thomas having a lackluster legal portfolio and who was accused by many women–during his hearings–of having sexually harassed them under his authority as head of the EEOC. All Thomas had to do to get the Democrats to cower and capitulate was cynically play the race card. “This is an electronic lynching” he indignantly declared, and 9 Democratic senators immediately folded and voted to confirm him. That’s our so-called opposition party for you. Even when they have numbers, they squander their power. Keep in mind it is ThomasNet has been the 5th and deciding vote on cases such as Citizens United and the gutting.of the Voting Rights Act. Now they can only sit back as irrelevant bystanders as another right-wing extremist is going to be confirmed –as they did with the Brett Cavanaugh nomination (indignant, at times over-the top defiant Brett was also accused of sexual misconduct, but hey, it was a matter of–like Thomas– he said vs all of them said).

This is why I again beat a dead horse. Opposition party my ass! It is apparent that winning isn’t something the Democrats care about. Seriously, they do not care enough to find strong candidates. Otherwise explain how it loses to a Richard Nixon. Or a Ronald Reagan (whose Reaganomics continue to haunt the working class). Or Bush I or Bush II (the latter the author of the propaganda fueled invasion of Iraq and its massive cost of lives while private interests reaped massive profits). But worse than those loses was that 2016 race. That loss may well spell the end of what is already a tarnished and tattered democracy, with a fledgling fascist regime that is hiding in plain sight right now.

Perhaps enough people who alarmingly see what is right in front of their eyes will show up on November 3rd (with likely days and days to follow to sort out the mailed-in ballots). I mean enough votes to overcome the blatant voter suppression or scrubbing of strategically identified ethnic and likely Afro-American surnames from voting rolls that is standard procedure by the GOP at this point (Keep in mind these voting count counter-measures weren’t installed in a political vacuum. Where the hell was that opposition party as it became more an in-your-face vote stealing gambit?).

Right now it looks bad for saving this country from more dysfunction, lawlessness and divisiveness. Should the dangerous, amoral denizens of high and low office be shown the door, it will be in spite of the inept and disgustingly complicit Democratic Party. Their candidate for the White House projects exhaustion while trying to enunciate a rote political rhetoric. Not too inspiring. If he wins, that dead horse won’t be resurrected. If anything, it’ll be another Trojan Horse with no teeth and no game to serve the many instead of the few. But if victorious because legions of people take it upon themselves to fight back against what is now a GOP death cult, it will need be replaced as soon as possible with a fresh steed who the vast majority of people can actually get excited about. If that can happen, the DNC and it’s play not to lose but also not to win strategy can be, finally, and once for all, be pronounced dead. And permanently buried. At long last.

Posted in Uncategorized | 3 Comments

A Horse Named Ghost

Allow me to once again beat the crap out of a long dead horse. This particular dead horse passed on 40 years ago or so, and so one might think me a bit unable to leave the creature dead and buried, once and for all. However, it’s just too important to not again put the carcass of the deceased on display at this specific point in time, because while the horse may be passed on, it hovers about, haunting millions of people, many of whom bet on it over and over only to keep watching it lose race after crucial race, losing by not knowing how to win, and at times behaving in so docile a manner that the notion of winning when it counted most was seemingly not a matter of urgency or importance. It once did know how to win. But again, that was over forty years ago, at a minimum, possibly 50 or more years ago. And right now, the spectre of this creature is so intensely insinuating itself into our daily lives that–whether one knows it or not–it would appear to be intent on reminding us of what a tragedy it’s demise represented, and what its passing constantly keeps reminding the majority of we the people of

Okay, enough with a metaphorical dead horse. But I think it’s an apt metaphor for——-the Democratic Party. I guess I should use a donkey as the four-legged metaphor, but “beating a dead horse” is an established descriptor of my mojo here. The literal meaning of the horse metaphor is that it is a waste of time to do so, as the dead horse will not work just because you beat it. The Democratic Party is not going to work any better if I or millions of others keep beating it. It is a DEAD HORSE. How-ever. Until the goddam corpse is not worth beating anymore, as in it has been replaced by a functioning, capable, savvy horse, willing to try its best to win winnable races, to fight and forge evermore ahead in the race, then let the desecration continue.

Right now, in late September of 2020, this is what the failed Democratic Party has managed to usher into our lives through its contemporary mojo of incompetency, corrupted ideology, and a collusive and capitulatory modus operandi: It stupefyingly lost the 2016 election to a now irrefutably intellectually bankrupt, self-styled autocratic flim-flam man, a mysogynistic cretin who overtly sexualizes his own daughter, who by edict separates–likely forever–immigrant children from their parents, who wantonly ignores science–immunological and climate related– and who has all but guaranteed he will refuse to leave office should he lose the election. Many people saw his garish character flaws years ago, and certainly so did the DNC in 2016 when it absurdly took it for granted that Hillary Clinton simply could not lose to a reality TV show host.

To go back to the dead horse theme, the 2016 election was as though the DNC’s pony in this race started out of the gate with a 20 length lead, and then the horse became bored, its sense of purpose supplanted by self-delusional invincibility. But then again, if the DNC was her handler, it was inevitable that it would lose, since that is what the DNC gives us: losers. Clinton and Obama? Towering statesmen compared to the serial ignoramus in the oval office, but both capitulated, compromised and ultimately accommodated a GOP agenda that has forever catered to a tiny fraction of the public at the expense of the greater good. Clinton and Obama both placed corporate interests over all else. Clinton signed off on gutting much of the social welfare programs that were vital to those already victimized by social and financial inequality. Obama refused to hold to account the Wall Street hucksters that cost so many their jobs, pensions and homes related to the 2008 market meltdown. FDR still spins in his grave.

Now, after almost four years of the dangerous disgrace that is our current national ruling party, it boggles the mind that the Democrats, rather than being able to project a superiority to the freak show that basically wipes its ass with the Constitution, that constantly crosses legal lines with impunity, that unabashedly rigs local, statewide and national vote counts, finds itself again playing defense or worse, being unable to prevent yet another gross abuse of power by the GOP. The failed DNC apparently has no ability to block the egregious power grabs of what soon will be a second, radical-right wing SCOTUS nominee from being confirmed. 

They have no power to stop this power grab because they can’t manage to win enough senate seats to have a majority. Never mind having a majority. The Democrats, back in 1991, with a 57-43 senate advantage, approved putting a right-wing nominee named Clarence Thomas on the Court, in spite of Thomas having a lackluster legal portfolio and who was accused by many women–during his hearings–of having sexually harassed them under his authority as head of the EEOC. All Thomas had to do to get the Democrats to cower and capitulate was cynically play the race card. “This is an electronic lynching” he indignantly declared, and 9 Democratic senators immediately folded and voted to confirm him. That’s our so-called opposition party for you. Even when they have numbers, they squander their power. Keep in mind it is ThomasNet has been the 5th and deciding vote on cases such as Citizens United and the gutting.of the Voting Rights Act. Now they can only sit back as irrelevant bystanders as another right-wing extremist is going to be confirmed –as they did with the Brett Cavanaugh nomination (indignant, at times over-the top defiant Brett was also accused of sexual misconduct, but hey, it was a matter of–like Thomas– he said vs all of them said).

This is why I again beat a dead horse. Opposition party my ass! It is apparent that winning isn’t something the Democrats care about. Seriously, they do not care enough to find strong candidates. Otherwise explain how it loses to a Richard Nixon. Or a Ronald Reagan (whose Reaganomics continue to haunt the working class). Or Bush I or Bush II (the latter the author of the propaganda fueled invasion of Iraq and its massive cost of lives while private interests reaped massive profits). But worse than those loses was that 2016 race. That loss may well spell the end of what is already a tarnished and tattered democracy, with a fledgling fascist regime that is hiding in plain sight right now.

Perhaps enough people who alarmingly see what is right in front of their eyes will show up on November 3rd (with likely days and days to follow to sort out the mailed-in ballots). I mean enough votes to overcome the blatant voter suppression or scrubbing of strategically identified ethnic and likely Afro-American surnames from voting rolls that is standard procedure by the GOP at this point (Keep in mind these voting count counter-measures weren’t installed in a political vacuum. Where the hell was that opposition party as it became more an in-your-face vote stealing gambit?).

Right now it looks bad for saving this country from more dysfunction, lawlessness and divisiveness. Should the dangerous, amoral denizens of high and low office be shown the door, it will be in spite of the inept and disgustingly complicit Democratic Party. Their candidate for the White House projects exhaustion while trying to enunciate a rote political rhetoric. Not too inspiring. If he wins, that dead horse won’t be resurrected. If anything, it’ll be another Trojan Horse with no teeth and no game to serve the many instead of the few. But if victorious because legions of people take it upon themselves to fight back against what is now a GOP death cult, it will need be replaced as soon as possible with a fresh steed who the vast majority of people can actually get excited about. If that can happen, the DNC and it’s play not to lose but also not to win strategy can be, finally, and once for all, be pronounced dead. And permanently buried. At long last.

Posted in Uncategorized | 4 Comments

The Big Picture

Mr.T is running for re-election. Let’s take at look at the latest developments that a voter might chew on before making a decision on his worthiness. Just the recent headlines from some news organizations: “T” ‘wanted to play down Covid despite knowing deadliness’. “T” asserts Kamala Harris would be a disaster for the country. Mr.T considers those in the military who died during their service “losers and suckers”. “T” approves of opening Alaska’s Coastal Plain up to oil and gas leasing. Mr.T is attempting to dismantle the Postal Service. Mr.T claims massive mail-voting fraud without evidence of such. Okay, enough of those recent aspects of Mr.T and his beliefs, attitudes and opinions. Let’s quickly review pre-pandemic Mr.T’s use of his office: families ripped apart at the Mexican border. Worker’s struggle economically while their bosses get a huge tax cut. He has referred to white supremacists as “fine people”. Mr.T curries favor from “strongmen” such as V. Putin. According to Mr.T the city of Baltimore is ” a rat and rodent infested town” targeting the late House Representative Elijah Cummings (an Afro-American). He suggested the late Rep.John Dingle may be in hell. When Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez and her fellow newly elected House females of color members–labeled “The Squad”– criticized him , he told them to “go back to where you came from” although all but one was born in the U,S. Mr.T pulled the U.S. out of the Paris Climate Accord. Mr.T has proposed weakening regulations on climate-changing methane emissions; he has repealed the Obama-era clean water rule.””T” has weakened the Endangered Species Act. He has boosted coal-powered plants that release carbon dioxide pollution into the environment. Mr.T is planning to loosen Obama-era rules restricting auto pollution. All of the above can be easily researched for their veracity. Oh, and one more thing: during Mr.T’s tenure at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue (or is it 1600 Mar-a-Lago?) the “nuclear clock” has moved 30 seconds closer to midnight, making the minute hand sit–for the moment at least–at 100 seconds to nuclear annihilation. So that’s some of the verifiable record of the man running for re-election. Once upon a time, in a galaxy far, far away, such a resume would be too toxic to take seriously as a motivation for such a record warranting garnering even a single vote. However, we are not in that far away galaxy. We’re stuck in this one. And the entire planet now has two very real existential threats facing it before the November 3rd, 2020 election: the pandemic and climate change. Both of these scientifically verifiable matters will be around far after November 3rd. Can the environment be saved? How many more millions will die from the virus that has no cure in sight after several months of its spread? Those are matters for all the world to worry over. Here, in the U.S., we have those two issues to either take seriously or not, plus a rather important election to either take seriously or not. Three “crisis” it is for us here, since depending on our election’s outcome, those two other issues will be profoundly affected–for better or worse. Maybe something in-tween those two extremes, given the choice available at the top of our two-party system’s ticket. There’s plenty of cynicism mingling in the breeze, possibly keeping company with Covid-19. Talk about toxic air! Humankind has some heavy lifting to do if it’s going to save itself (the Earth will be here regardless of any outcome on any of the three looming confrontations). According to the polls, Mr.T still could prevail, by hook or crook. Humans are flawed creatures. We specialize in chaos, conflict, corruption, greed, avarice, exploitation and worse and keep doubling down on the consequences of our bad choices. If I seem to be engaging in hyperbole, take some history courses and get back to me. I recently went to a planetarium and saw a great program about astronomy and its means of answering some of the inevitable questions about our place in the Big Picture fascination triggered by looking at the riot of celestial objects to be seen in the night sky. I sat there, tilted back on the seat’s headrest, once again lost in the vastness of seemingly endless outer space. Maybe it was a projected light show, but I believe it represents a reality that should remind all of us how insignificant we all are in that Big Picture. The fact that it was the human species that used its brain to explore and discover truths about time and space–and the real possibly of other life forms gave me a sense of hope. We humans are capable of such incredibly noble uses of our brains, I thought. Then the light show ended and I walked out into the pandemic reality of the day. A very hot, unseasonably hot day it was. Indeed, I had come back down to Earth with its human-made mess of a year 2020. Either we use our brains a lot better, or this particular orbiting rock has a not too bright future as just another object from some other possible view in some other possible world where other possible beings much smarter than us have yet and may never even notice we exist or existed.. That, in a.way, is the ultimate irony.
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Caviat Emptor, election 2020 edition

This blog may not be healthy for those with political blinders on. I cannot resist throwing more dirt on the DNC. But first, let me contrast the DNC to the GOP. Any sensible person, given even a modestly functioning moral compass, should be able to see the modern-day GOP for what it is: a venal, vile, villainous, vicious pack of plutocratic, callous, cold-blooded anti-democratic criminals. If the GOP could get their way, we’d have oil wells scattered throughout our national parks, women would not have access to reproductive healthcare, public schools would no longer exist, immigrants would be walled-off from entry, the Postal Service would be gone, Social Security would be given to Wall Street to gamble with its funds, Medicare would be abolished with no replacement considered, the Evangelicals would be a branch of government, while there would be no branch of government whatsoever designed to help anyone, anywhere, anytime, for whatever reason, should they not be wealthy enough to never, ever have need for any such “safety net” protections in the first place. There certainly would be no unions. Corporations would be given blanket immunity for any damages to the environment, worker safety and “whistle blowers” would be akin to Winston Smith, the doomed protagonist in Orwell’s dystopian novel 1984. Hell, since the September 11, 2001 attacks, the GOP has already ushered in a Big Brother agenda of bullshit disguised under the name of The Homeland Security Act. Of course, the GOP has many mouth-breathing, knuckle dragging, brain-dead supporters who likely need all of the things that their preferred party clearly is against. But that’s a mental health issue that can never be resolved, since there will never be a vaccine for terminal stupidity. Elsewise, how does one account for people as soulless as Trump, Pence, McConnell, David Nunes, Kevin McCarthy, Steve Scalise, Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz and so many more who support the above noted extreme agendas from getting elected?! Ah, but I am not saying that the GOP staged a sneaky, cynical, diabolical coup d’etat. The Elephant party is as stealthy as the Mastodon ancestors of their mascot. Here we are! Like it or not. Clearly, they use fear mongering to throw red meat at their dopey devotees and get them to the polls, but historically more registered voters–nationally– identify as Democrat, not Republican. Thus, to gain power in our entrenched two-party system, the GOP needs more of their supporters to show up at the polls than that of Democratic supporters. Sure, Hillary got 3 million more votes than Trump, but there’s that electoral college factor, a relic as rusted out and irrelevant in 21st century politics as the 2nd Amendment is, with its “well regulated militia” language clearly referring to arms and and the man circa 18th century America. Nonetheless, the electoral college decides the final tally. Since it is a well established fact that elections–especially those at the highest levels of governance–are won by appealing not to the extremes on the margins of the electorate, but to that middle ground of slightly for/against or the unmolded political Clay People who have virtually no preference (either because they don’t know what’s at stake, or they do, but feel it doesn’t matter to them). Clearly then, the Donkey Party, for the better part of forty years now, doesn’t appear to appeal to that coveted “target audience” ready to be sculpted into supporters. Which brings me back to the DNC. Yes, the DNC, who managed to let the electoral college make a sociopathic candidate the President in 2016 by propping up a massively unpopular candidate of their own. She may have gotten more votes, but again, that electoral map is not some obscure mechanism in how presidential elections are won or lost. The DNC was smug. Oh, so smug! Their candidate was such a terrible campaigner she lost the three most crucial states on that electoral map, and thus the election. There was a more passionate and progressive candidate with very popular proposals, who was threatening to take the lead in the 2016 primaries, but the DNC subverted his chances (If you don’t know how, research that political horserace and make sure you google Deborah Wasserman Schultz). Now, in 2020, we have the same sociopath running for re-election. And the same passionate progressive candidate from 2016 has again been shoved aside by the DNC (see previous blog per the Cretin and the Corpse, Jim Clyborn, South Carolina, etc)) when he looked like he could break the chokehold of entrenched Democratic, middle-of-the-road, play it safe, rock no boats, take small steps, play not to win but play not to lose, losers game of those aforementioned forty years. Ipso facto, the USA would not be headed by a sociopath now, aided by foreign interference in the 2016 election, without the incompetency of the DNC. The Democratic candidate in 2000 couldn’t manage to win his own home state of Tennessee (which would have given the electoral college to him, not the dingy, dopey Geo. W. Bush). And your typical corporate DNC critter has no guts, as Al Gore didn’t even bother to bitch about the phony Florida vote count in that notorious outcome. By ironic contrast, Mr.Psycho is already bitching about being the victim of a rigged outcome. Can you make this stuff up? The Demoratic Party is so good at losing, it brought us a purely puppet-mastered Ronald Reagan in 1980, who won by attracting millions of so-called Reagan Democrats! And all Reagan did was usher in Reaganomics and its let-them -eat-cake, deregulation, disastrous free market monetary outcomes that haunt us to this day. And even when the Democrat wins, we the people still lose. Bill Clinton? GATT-NAFTA? Gutting the social safety net programs? Barack Obama? Mr. Hope and Change, who for a short while had both the the House and the Senate with Democrat majorities, but unlike the GOP always does when it has the numbers, didn’t ram down their throats any progressive agenda, especially single-payer healthcare, which the public wanted then, and still wants now, but Candidate Corpse does not. Neither is he/DNC interested in the popular Green New Deal. The pandemic that is not about to ease up here in the US has clearly shown how rotten our political system has been for so very long. Aided by DNC’s incompetence, capitulation, accommodation and collusion in much of the nefarious legislation that fucks over the working class while transferring wealth from below to above, the rigged, exclusively corporate two-party system must be dismantled. The entire structure of this system that no longer represents we the people has to be replaced. It would be a much, much more promising future if a passionate progressive, be it a he or a she, white, black, brown or rainbow would be a choice at the top of the ticket. Not the Democratic ticket, though. How about a Progressive Party? Given the recent ascension of Progressives in local and national elections, there arr obviously a lot of people looking for real, substantive change. Not a DNC lapdog. Again. But again, the DNC quiets the voices of those fighting for real change, and AGAIN relies on a cynical and sour mantra of “you know you have to vote for our candidate. However, now that dare you to not vote for our candidate crap is a literal double-dare by the DNC. It seems to think that the Cretin’s sheer psycho-sociopathic reality show makes the Corpse a sure thing. Like Hillary was. We shall soon see. But even if the DNC wins, don’t anyone hold your breath waiting for anything to change when it comes to doing what has been needed to be done for decades. Otherwise, why does it not allow its primaries to be run without rigging the outcome? Post script! The Corpse just announced Kamala Harris as his VP choice. Does she excite you? No doubt she has the stamp of approval from the DNC. She was a candidate in the Donkey primaries. She dropped out in December owing to not gaining any traction with the voters.
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The Cretin and the Corpse, PanDumbic edition

What is there left to comment on, deconstruct or even outright mock as pertains to current events? Particularly events here in the U.S. Nothing much is really new these days. Right? There’s that “sameness” that has been in place since the shut-down. Covid World. The worst reality show ever, starring all of us. We are in the cast, but the “stars” hog the headlines. You join a Zoom pilates class, a certain someone else declares we are doing a great job kicking Covid ass in direct dissent of scientific reality. Reality? Reality theater of the absurd. Everything that might be labelled “news” is really the same story, with a few incoherent scenes added along with some inserted inane dialogue. We spin our parts in this modern day Long Day’s Journey into Sameness, and try to remember what day of the week it is. The primary performers do not notice us, and they sure don’t care about that, either. The Show is a full-blown case of being trapped by a pandemic on a large vessel, but one that is in serious trouble. Shall we rearrange the deck chairs? We’re stuck in Pandemic World. World, as in planet Earth. Here in the U.S., I call it PanDumbic World. We are trapped on a ship with no Captain, no charted course, a crew that is in constant turmoil, and at this point is listing dramatically, possibly fatally so in Constitutional terms. We’re on the USS MegaShip, containing great wealth and a big military. It’s engine is sputtering in spite of our assets. Once the most sturdy of national vessels anywhere in the world. But that was then, This is now. Am I being too negative? Hey, this is my “spin” okay? Trying not to repeat myself when there is nothing new left to say. You try it. I no longer have the blogger gumption to inspire use of a vocabulary to describe current events on our ship. I lack whatever words one needs to accurately, clearly make sense of how bad things are when there is such a leadership vacuum but that by default is nonetheless “leading” the way, but not for everyone on board. The modus operandi of the crew is to protect themselves. This pathway doesn’t have a defined course. It lurches. It convulses. It shocks. Without shame. But then here I go repeating what has been said a quintillion times over by those paid to have the gumption to find the best words to describe things. But no matter how truthful their tales, nothing changes, It’s a sameness within the sameness no matter who might be be at the controls. However, one thing that will be actual new “news” is within sight. Ahoy there! It’s an event, and it could either save the ship–could, maybe, sorta save it–or absolutely doom it to a further descent into dangerously dark waters. We are just 12 weeks and two days from a national election. It should be cataclysmic. Convulsive. Divisive. But maybe at least we’ll have an actual Captain after it is over. Uh, in title anyway. However, based on the current choice of either more lunacy and sociopathic outcomes or a mummified, invisible man who is as technically fraudulent a candidate as his opponent has always been, even before we foolishly ignored the unabashed election tampering and turned over the ship to this psycho (that’s my best word for him; it encapsulates the guy, no? Ask any reputable shrink…) I feel it to be a reverse Sophie’s Choice of yuck. Yeah. I’m calling Joe Biden a fraud. I explained it in a blog a few months back. Jim Clyburn. South Carolina. Biden is being written off after the first few primaries but along come the DNC to restore order, as a certain guy named Sanders was piling up delegates and victories early on. So, yeah, this guy who looks embalmed and is shaky-minded, but in a ding-a-ling way more than sociopathic way, isn’t much of a Dudley Do-Right type as far as worthiness goes. Nothing about this man is impressive, other than his long and unimpressive political record. At least that’s my take on him–and a whole LOT of others too. So, in the most important election of my life and likely even anyone who is under 90 years old, we get the choice of a mega-wart disguised as a human being and a political corpse disguised as a Savior. An old school corporate political corpse to boot. JB was dead. The DNC resurrected him. To the detriment of championing a Captain who has a plan that would help all of us on this listing ship called the US of A. In the world of Covid Sameness, we thus are staring at the most classic case of an evil of two lessors, but they’re unequally evil lessors in such a massively dramatic, urgent and you have no choice but to vote for the dead guy way. I get it, though. Sure. We have to make the most leaderless “leader” the world has ever known (well maybe some of those Roman Emperors had their moments) go away. Toss him overboard. With a cement overcoat affixed. But I resent that in an election that begs for someone concerned about the ship, the crew and and all of its passengers, we get the same ol’ same ol’ political sameness from the so-called “opposition party”. In the meantime, sign up for that Zoom book club, or the Zoom ascent of Mt. Everest. After November 3rd, none of this may natter any more. Officially.
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Our PanDumbic World

Late July! Time flies during a pandemic, no? Well, for me it seems to be going along at a snappy pace, but that’s my sense of those sands moving in the hourglass. Hour after hour, day after day, week after…

…and counting. You might have a different take on time ticking away during our collective encapsulation in a world where by now everyone over the age of three likely knows the drill: wear a mask; keep your distance; wash hands often. Not that everyone is on-board with those basic guidelines. I’ll bet you know someone who still doesn’t want to be part of the solution. Maybe you live with a “denier” or have a once-close (in terms of getting along generally) friend who is drinking the Covid Kool-Aid. Or more literally, willing to be dumb enough to breathe the Covid virus. Exasperating, no? I’m being a bit presumptuous I suppose. This blog may have eyeballs reading it who are true non-believers. If so: are you fucking crazy?!

Crazy. We’re all crazy in what I call PanDumbic World. Those who want to be as safe as possible are by now a bit crazed by the realization that this infectious disease is not going to be eradicated any time soon. Maybe never. The anti-maskers are crazed at having to defend their stupidity. Not an easy task, defending unabashed stupidity. And at this point from when our country first came to realize the seriousness of the matter (mostly local governments) there is this disturbing fact: the U.S. is #1 on the leader board of countries around the world in the ranking of, uh, let’s call it the Stupidity-O-Meter. That is, no country is as messed up with infections, hospitalizations and fatalities due to the coronavirus as we are in the U.S. Why? Well, let’s call it a lack of leadership, from the federal level (more a complete absence of leadership than simply lacking in that particular noun regarding our national government) on down to state and local guidance. Some areas have tried hard to fight smartly, while too many areas waited too long to prevent the current widespread spike in infections. Pretty stupid, eh?

So, hey. We’re number one! Covid-19 found its sweet spot from sea to shining sea. Right, come to the United States, the land of opportunity! And all of us are on the spot regardless of our individually having been trying hard to do the right thing, or being an ipso facto deserter in the “war” against this invisible enemy. I, for one, want to think that when (if?) we win this battle, those who aided and abetted the enemy will be dealt with Nuremberg Trial style. I know, dream on…

However, war criminals should be held to account. If not, then what lesson will have been learned for future generations? Oh wait, when (if?) we win this covid war, there’s that climate change battle that is still looming. Future generations? Is there a Vegas line on these probable outcomes? If so, lay the odds and bet on the Apocalypse. No, wait, then how do you spend that money in an apocalypse? Never mind, goddammit. The thing is, right now, in a gaming perspective of the coronavirus and climate change, the “smart” money likely would be put down on those two global castastrophes-in-progress finishing off our pretty stupid human race.

Geeze, I wish I could feel more encouraging, but look around. We’ve been messed up for centuries. Dystopia is a place on earth, or many places, for as long as history has been recorded. We humans generally hate one another, even when the other humans may be quite alike. Or just kind of alike. Same skin different religious belief. Different religion, different skin color. Same skin, different lifestyle. Same skin, different gender. Same gender, different politics. Same politics, different religion. Same religion, different lifestyles. Different skins, different politics. Same race, different ethnicity. Same ethnicity, different lifestyle. Same race, different skins. Same race, same skin, different cultures. Same skin, same religion, same culture, same politics, same lifestyle, either gender but different age. Same race, skin, either gender, age, but different culture. I must be leaving some combo out but tell me how I’m wrong. Same EVERTHING but different attitudes. In the same sweet spot but different perceptions of that reality. Different realities, same facts in front of the faces. Twin faces, but only one will wear a mask. Same parents, but different as night and day in our PanDumbic World.

We humans are one messed up species. Same species, different race? I should have started and ended with that one eh? Same species, WRONG race at the WRONG time. Check your skin color before saying anything around someone of a different skin color. Check your tongue around a different gender of the same race. Double check that tongue around a different gender of a different race.

Can’t we all just get along? I think not. Coronavirus, climate change, cancel culture. The Triple Crown of human conflict. Now playing out atmospherically, epidemiologically, and political correctness-ically.

Hang tough, my fellow humanoids. If we work together we can get past all of this.

Ha! Just kidding. Looks like we’re getting what we humans deserve. Well, we don’t all deserve this, but we are all in it together on planet Earth. I guess that has been the problem all along. We’re stuck with one another and all those divisive differences. We’ve had our shining moments. We have created a complex world. Much to marvel at. But still, for all the wonders we have accomplished, it’s a wonder how badly we have screwed it all up at this point in time. Whether this time seems to be a the same day over and over, slow and sluggish-like, or moving along, different day, new ways to distract, but still caught in the crosshairs of a cannon we have pretty much pointed at ourselves, one way or another. PanDumbic World = someone, regardless of race, ethnicity, lifestyle, politics or whatever simply ate something he or she should not have eaten that somehow crossed paths with a bat somewhere. Oops. There it is: wrong, very very wrong culture. That’s the prevailing theory, anyway. Hmm. Speaking of eating, it’s about that time.

Remember, tomorrow is another day. I think…

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Radio Daze

While laying awake in the very early hours of the day, waiting to snooze a bit more, I figured let’s listen to some radio, and let a bit of this and that enter my mind. It is a matter of trying to re-direct one’s thoughts from you-know-what to you never know what. Not seeking a musical interlude as much as some non-you-know-what spoken content, I fished around the dial, with low expectations.

After dismissing the sports station’s babble about pro baseball and the monetary machinations between billionaire owners and adult men paid in the serious seven-figures to play a game for 6 months a year, I was profoundly lacking in concern at the moment (mind you the discussion seemed to be oblivious to the literally impossible task of keeping the players, coaches, staff and others safe from being infected while playing their sport). I went up the dial and landed on an early morning talk show aired on a bonafide progressive station (a finding as rare as a empathetic utterance by the occupant of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue). After a couple of minutes of listening to this show’s topic of discussion, I lay wondering if the host or her guest had any idea of the irony involved in their expressions of disappointment and disapproval regarding one Mr.Joe Biden. You know, the Democratic Party’s preferred choice to march into electoral battle with Mr. Sensitivity at 1600 Penn Ave.

Evidently, JB uttered a clearly insensitive, clumsy-ass thought during one of his rare appearances in the media (seriously, Joe is the invisible man). He said something along the lines that if an African American were to vote for his opponent come this November’s election, then “you ain’t black”. Okay. Given that JB is white, that’s a pretty demeaning, presumptuous assertion. I understand the political, knee-jerk mentality of his utterance, since the African American vote has been overwhelmingly Democratic for decades. I think he was trying to say, is that the Democrats actually care about black lives, as opposed to the standard issue Republican office holder virtually at any level. Thus, Joe’s logic dictates that…

The irony I felt as I listened had to do with connecting a few dots regarding how Joe Biden became the face of the Democratic Party for election 2020 in the first place. Mind you, the two radio voices belonged to two Afro-American women.

The secondary, non-host (I assume an invited guest) was rattling off a laundry list of things that Biden should apologize for, starting with the “you ain’t black” blunder, and then onto a litany of other perceived affronts to the the Afro-American community. It was at that point that I concluded this was absolute nonsense. Why? Here’s why: so Joe Biden has revealed who he is, that being a standard issue mouthpiece for a party that takes the black vote for granted. Of course that is who is he. He is a very old school, corporate democrat. They talk the social, economic, ethnic, racial, we are all the same agenda. Then when they do actually have the power and leverage to walk that walk, they sell out for a status quo, play-it-safe, go-along-to-get-along end game. Seriously, They talk the talk, but not since forever it seems has the national Democratic Party really ever walked the walk on striving for equality for all Americans, blacks and other minorities included. Equality? It has long been pretty ugly (and now made grotesque by Covid-19).

The irony of the radio program’ s speakers venting their spleen about “you ain’t black”–for me, as a white listener–is that it was the Afro-American community that literally resurrected Biden’s candidacy. Keep in mind that Joe Biden was a grade-A ho-hum candidate from the moment he decided to run for president, and up to the so-called “super Tuesday” Democratic primary battles. Biden, after the first three primaries, which were the New Hampshire, Iowa, and then–less historically overblown in importance–Nevada, was fading as fast as a gimpy nag in the feature race at Pimlico. It was Bernie Sanders who was the front runner. Bernie won New Hampshire with three times the votes for Biden. He won Iowa, while Biden finished FIFTH. Sanders won Nevada, beating Biden by 40% to 19% in that vote.

Bernie had the momentum, and the progressive, lift all boats proposals that put him in the lead. Which scared the shit out of the play-it-safe, no interloper progressives allowed DNC (same as in 2016).

Then came South Carolina. And with it, James Clyborn. Clyborn is a native, African American South Carolinian. He is the third ranking Democrat in the House of Representatives. He is an old school Dem, too, now 79 years of age. It was Clyborn who urged his fellow Afro-Americans in South Carolina to go out and vote for Biden, who according to Clyborn was the guy looking out for your Afro-American futures. Bernie Sanders? The guy who wants Medicare for all, and affordable if not free education? The Green New Deal? The candidate who champions an economic system that truly wants to serve all people, regardless of skin color, gender, and so on.? Bernie, the guy with decades of progressive, we the people calls to action? Why vote for him?

Yeah, that white guy. He made a big impact four years ago running on his ideas for a more egalitarian governing structure. Until he was sabotaged by the DNC.

But that was 2016. Now, in 2020 here came Jim Clyborn, who revealed his pro-status quo, don’t rock the boat, middling, wussy, play-to-lose devotion to the national Democratic Party and who carried sway with the black vote when that South Carolina primary came around. And sway his consrituents he did. The Afro-American vote in S.C. gave Biden a resounding victory over Bernie, the guy whose political agenda would clearly serve everyone, not just the entrenched power brokers. Such as James Clyborn (who knows damn well better, having grown up in South Carolina during Jim Crow days). But power is hardly ever easily shared. Clyborn played the DNC system and worked his way up. Good for him. However, when it came down to demonstrating he, too, at a crucial point in political importance to the put-upon and left behinds, was ready to say enough!, he wasn’t about to abandon the DNC’s corporate interests. He championed the corporate Joe Biden. He did the DNC’s bidding, while having to know Sander’s proposals addressed vital changes that desperately needed acting upon. Biden? A reformer? Please!

The woman demanding Biden make all the apologies she felt he owned the black community seemed unable to connect the dots that I was connecting. Biden is a lost cause. Biden is about to become irrelevant, and he is the BIG Name for the entrenched Democrats. Def-Con FIVE at the DNC! It gets Clyborn to shill for Biden in S.C. and Biden wins big. Then Super Tuesday follows and–surPRIZE! Buttigeig and Klobachar announce they are dropping out of the race just before Super Tuesday, throwing their support to Biden. Biden is suddenly–astoundingly, actually– quite relevant and now positioned to push Sanders aside, as Sanders was pushed aside in 2016.

The media ate up the Joe is Back narrative. Bernie who? Corporate media likes corporate Joe. And now Joe Biden is the guy.

Right. Joe Biden is the guy who says “you ain’t black” unless you blacks votes for him. As if race is supposed to even matter, huh? But it was the Afro-American vote that saved invisible Joe Biden. He’s the 2020 candidate who’s ideas will vanquish the buffoon at 1600 Pennsylvania supossedly. What ideas? If the Afro-American voters who went for Biden would have actually judged each on their track record and current ideas, it would seem to be clear who would best represent them. But I guess Clyborn pounded home the propaganda about Bernie being too radical and never being able to enact his policies even if he got elected. Bullshit. White, black, brown, yellow or rainbow, each voter should vote objectively, not just allow themselves to be given marching orders from anyone else.

Thus I lay and snickered at how ridiculous was the umbrage taken with the white candidate that these two radio voices had issues with when it was their very own fellow Afro-Americans who resurrected his candidacy in South Carolina. Ladies. Your fellow Afro-American political forces created the candidate who so unsurprisingly said “you ain’t black”. Now you choose to question his judgement?

What’s that expression? Oh, right. Be careful what you ask for, because you just might get it.

The moral of this blog entry is: don’t listen to radio talk shows, unless you just want it to serve as white noise (not my term, so please don’t call me a racist). Just roll over and try not to think about any of this horseshit. Roll over. Go back to sleep. If you can…

But, as with the last sentence of Hemingway’s short story, A Clean, Well Lighted Place put it: “It is only insomnia. Many must have it”.

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Pandumbic!

Well, well. People of Earth, how are we doing on this Memorial Day, 2020? No, this is not Zeldar from Zardoz. I am a human, sentient being, born on this Mountain Sphere, as Zeldar has taken to calling it.  He–it–refuses to come back here anymore, preferring to stay near home on planet Zardoz, having concluded a few visits ago that Mountain Sphere people are too baffling to bother with any longer. You know, a “does not compute” endgame. How do I know these things? I just know. Call it my blogger’s intuition. I do have a feel for Zeldar’s A.I. “mind”-set, since after all, the few times he/it/she? it has dropped-in, its this blog that the Zelster has used to share A.I. analysis. So, suffice to say, if anyone has insight into our visitor from afar far far away, it is I, who owns the content that appears here. And I say he/she/it/whatever is not coming back. But I have always dug that “People of Earth” salutation as it emanated from those great 1950s sci-fi flicks that had all kind of aliens taken residence here, mostly with evil intent. And that”we come in peace” assertion always turns out to be a bait-and-switch strategy. Evil abounds, and is boundless when it comes from space. Deep space. Mind you, I’m not talking that mushy Spielberg kind of sci-fi. Well made and great effects, sure, but it tried too hard to make nice with the space invader narrative. I mean c’mon.  Alien invasion needs a villainous mojo to grip a audience, not some gooey eyed, E.T. kumbaya outcome. They are MONSTER movies, right? You need a good monster. And we still have no ideas of what other life forms may be out there–and remember Zeldar is invisible, anyway, so he doesn’t count. But again, if anyone knows about Zeldar, it’s Joey Bag-a-Donut Holes here, okay? If you have a problem wit dat, then cancel your subscription and tune in to Alex Jones or Ann Coulter for your edification and don’t let me see you hanging around my blog again okay? 

Wait. Where was I?

1950s sci-fi. Classic stuff! The War of the Worlds, Invasion of the Body Snatchers, The Thing from Another World, Radar Men from the Moon, and of course, Abbot and Costello Go to Mars. Okay, that last one is me trying to lighten things up. Wait. Lighten things up? From what? I have no idea where this blog post is even going. Uh, buffering. Searching…

I got it! I just realized it’s about Monsters. Zeldar could have been a monster but those visits were meant as research, not search and destroy. Zeldar is essentially am A.I scientist, collecting data. Trying to understand the Moutain Sphere inhabitants. Which was an impossible task, clearly. We humans are one crazy ass species. When Zeldar happened upon Maw and Paw down in Wazoo City, the research algorithms went to circuit overload/shut down repeatedly. By the way, I’ve been trying to get Maw and Paw to leave their shack in Wazoo and share their thoughts again. Ray Joe Billy Bob Tucker. What a family.  But ya know, they don’t seem to get out much. Paw sure does get out a lot though, seeing as when the Scroggins clan is occupying space here, Paw has yet to ever once show his face. I’ll bet he’s down in Hempter right now, at the Sack-O-Suds Saloon.  

Wait. Right. Monsters. So, what monster is stalking humankind on this day. I bet you think I’m going to bring up you-know-what, but I’m not. The you-know-what isn’t a monster from deep space. It came from Mountain Sphere. It, like most of the gizmos we buy, came from China. Some human decided to eat some critter bought in a so-called “open market” that, according to the backtracking on this Chinese export, had been contaminated by a bat. But it began by a human being making a really bad choice of dining options. It has happened before. Animal to human contagion. But I consider you-know-what a product of the same baffling behavior that confronted Zeldar. 

It’s kinda like a sci-fi monster movie now. As a matter of fact, you-know-what conforms almost exactly to a 2008 fictional movie entitled Contagion. Life imitating art, or so its seems. Hmm. Now that I think about it, that movie seems to have predicted you-know-what, right down to the bat contaminating a pig, and then a chef buys the pig at some wild animal market and then Gwyneth Paltrow shakes hands with chef who just wiped his bloody-from-butchering-that-hapless-pig and then heads home unwittingly all funked up and–well, you get the drift? So, Maybe you-know-what was started by Scott Z.  Burns, who wrote the story. Okay, maybe that’s a stretch. When I’m finished here I’ll spread the Scott Z. theory, offering it up to Alex Jones and Ann Coulter. The Kardasians might be totally on-board with this, so them too.

Alright then, let’s get to the point here. Right. Monsters. This is a monster story. The same as the alien invasion nightmare scenarios that pit humans against creatures from deep space, except the monster here is…is…humans! Not all humans. But in this 21st century world, it doesn’t take anywhere near a majority of humans to create hell and havoc for the whole misbegotten lot of our species. Just enough who are–I think the precise clinical term is–RETARDED. They have brains that were fried inside the womb, and then grew up as TARDS. Some have been able to get enough fellow TARDS to get them into high office. And when I say these humans are RETARDED as far as using that space between their ears, I can think of no better term. 

Retarded: adjective. Less advanced in mental, physical, or social development than is usual for one’s age. Immoral. Offensive. Very foolish or stupid.

Zeldar, I do believe, can be accused of a sweeping generalization when its computations denoted Mountain Sphere to be inhabited exclusively by an inscrutably perplexing–yet not very complex life form that made no sense in its observable behavior. I, for one, take umbrage that Zeldar would lump me in with all of humankind that it deemed unworthy of even trying to figure out. I mean, I can understand the conclusion based on the unfortunate encounter with the Maw and Paws of Wazoo, but that was just an unlucky landing spot for its invisible presence. Then again, the RETARDS populate many spots on Mountain Sphere. It is now a matter of humans who can think and chew gum at the same time (or chewing tobacco in the case of Wazoo-ians, but when they be being a chewing and a spittin that tobaccy juice into a spittel pot, they kinda tip their hands as far not having the brains to choose not to chew) and those that can’t. Yeah, those TARDS. Forget the TARD’s propensity to pick other TARDS to tell them how to use the brains they don’t functionally have, because the Alpha Tards are very few in number. However, they have a teeming legion of TARDS who take their cues from them. And right now these TARDS are being used to further empower their Alpha Tard handlers while very likely exposing themselves to you-know-what, and maybe even dying from you-know-what, or spreading you-know what to others, others who may, like Gwyneth Paltrow in Contagion, get exposed to a TARD who shows up protesting against reality, essentially. Some carry assault weapons, Confederate flags, even Nazi apparel. 

There you have the modern day MONSTERS who, like in those classic evil alien sci-fi movies are defeated either by the force of firepower–but more smartly than armed confrontation would be the scientific solution. And science is going to have the last say in the matter of you-know-what. It is inevitable. It has various possible outcomes.

The science is impossible to deny. It says magical thinking by morons won’t save humankind. It’ll be the cause and effects that clearly dictates the smart way out of this mess. 

Rational behavior. What a concept, eh? 

Excuse me, but I’m going to distract myself by watching War of the Worlds again. The Martians seem invincible, indestructible. But what finishes them off? Earth born bacteria, of which their immune systems can’t cope with. Hmm. bacteria. Immune systems. Cause and effect. Maybe you-know-what  is counting on those whose brains never developed giving it immunity from from whatever science can throw at it. Right now, according to the data, the Tard Monsters are aiding and abetting the very thing that can only win if enough of them are allowed to deny reality.

Zeldar! Come back. Maw and Paw have reproduced and are spreading. I just know you can find an A.I. way to defeat these monsters. Seriously, then we’ll name some silicon valley operations after you. We’ll throw a parade for you, and be able to come out and enjoy the celebration and not be afraid anymore.

In the meantime, the you-know-what has become a panDumbic…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Theater of the Absurd, Dr.Strangelove edition

As the Covid World turns, eh? Are you becoming enervated by certain aspects of this once-in-a-lifetime, potentially apocalyptic reality?  It’s hard–I’d say, personally, virtually impossible– to watch any “news” anymore as the shapeless, sameness drift of daze go by and bye. Specifically, the most approach-avoidance encounter with our need for vital Covid-19 information is the grotesque daily doses of televised Theater of the Absurd–otherwise known as the White House coronavirus briefings. It quickly became obvious that the briefings never invited one to actually learn anything meaningful about the global pandemic that is not going anywhere anytime soon. The televised coverage of the briefings, centered on the Buffoon From Grifter Lagoon, also include two–TWO–actual medical scientists, one of whom is a bonafide expert on infectious diseases. However, even without watching yesterday’s briefing, today finds a tsunami of dissent in electronic and print media regarding the latest non-medical science endorsed bit of “possible remedy” by our POTUS/a,k,a, Dr.Strangelove. concerning ways to immunize one’s self, or cure the sick from, Covid-19: inject or otherwise ingest disinfectant chemicals.

That’s an astoundingly reckless thing for even the most harebrained supporters of Dr.Strangelove to consider doing. Those moronic, misguided acolytes aside, the fact that there are those two medical experts on the White House briefing team begs the question: how can they possibly stand this farcical pretense of providing the public with information that might actually boost confidence in our country’s particular battle with a global, lethal, invisible, enemy? That is, the part of our public that isn’t also part of the problem with this pandemic. The most recent incarnation of such public foolishness are those demanding they be allowed to resume business as usual, to again rub shoulders anywhere and everywhere, in direct defiance of the medical expertise that assures doing so will possibly kill such “freedom fighters” and infect other regions of the country working hard to flatten that curve. There may be Doctors Without Borders, but now we have the virus without cure, without borders as well. 

It’s as plain as daylight that the medical experts that are present in these briefings are under pressure to hold their tongues as far as refuting the asinine psycho-babble that inevitably sweeps through the press room in gales of hot air.  Are they under threat of being beaten with rubber hoses if they dare speak their medically trained minds? If they do, or if they resign, will their families be made to pay the price, like the coerced characters in gangster movies being told if they don’t play ball with Mr. Big the wife or children–being held captive in some remote location–will never been seen alive again? They do try to massage the absurd messaging from Dr.Strangelove, seemingly not willing to become targets themselves. Sad but true. Even the maker of Lysol, one of major manufacturers of disinfecting products refuted the idea of ingesting such product’s chemicals in a clear and sternly worded rebuttal.

Thus, we get these daily doses of misinformation, prevarication and provocation from Strangelove, and a pusillanimous performance from the two doctors.  This type of media coverage amounts to an unintended homage to Absurdist authors such as Samuel Beckett, Eugene Ionesco, Jean Genet and Luigi Pirandello among others. These Absurdist writers spoke to a perception of humanity trapped in an incomprehensible world, subject to any occurrence, no matter how unsettling and illogical. Little did Beckett and his like-minded bros know…

As I stated at the beginning of this piece, I’m finished with watching or listening to any and all blathering from the briefing farce. The only good that I can take from it is that it makes for such an easy target of justifiable ridicule and dismissal for this blogger. I’m admitting to being a bit lazy in finding distracting, upbeat things to write about. I’m sure there’s something good that is happening somewhere. Sure, some of the frontline workers are finally getting enough PPE. Right. Great upbeat story. Uh, yeah but that’s still Covid World. Or how so many people are using social media video platforms to talk to one another. Zoom. Skype. Facetime. But that’s also a product of Covid World. How about the large number of dogs and cats and other pets are being adopted during…ah goddamit! During Covid World. Uh. Uh. What else? How so many people are finding ways to help others during…no, that’s Covid World. Hey, let’s face it, there’s only one thing that is driving every bit of good or bad right now, whether we see it in real time or in news reporting, and that’s Covid World.

Perhaps, when we get out of Covid World, with real medical science finding the light at the end of the current never-ending tunnel, we’ll have a lot to smile about again. A lot to shed a tear or two over as well, but maybe there’s a big upside to the current downside. That’s up to not just medical science, but to every individual, regardless of race, ethnicity, religion, or political affiliation. Huh? Whaddayathink? One for all, all for one. No one can make you feel hopeless without your consent. The darkest cloud has a silver lining. The only thing we have to fear is fear itself…

Whoa! I’m feeling a bit woozy with that kind of pep talk. Not my nature. I mean, my eyes are wide open. I know what I’m seeing and hearing. But I’m really trying to imagine that light at the end of that tunnel. It’s coming. It has to, in spite of Dr.Strangelove and his virtual Death Cult followers. We outnumber them. It may be Theater of the Absurd at the moment, but the curtain on that act has got to come down, even if there’s a grain of truth to the existential dread that informs it. Seriously, once this is history, what existential dread could possibly replace it? We’ll all be on easy street. Life will be a breeze, a lark, a walk in the park, a time to embrace being free to walk about, stopping to smell those roses and count our blessings. Nature will still be there for us to remind us of how special a world it can be. Sure, we’ll all embrace the bounty and beauty of Nature.  Yeah. Right. Uh. Wait.

Hmm. Nature. Sure. Uh. Before Covid World wasn’t there some dire warnings about our planet’s health? That term existential threat comes to mind again. Oh, to hell with that. One existential threat at a time. So, like I said, we can do it. We can’t give up. This too shall pass…

Goddamit! Excuse me. Time to wash my hands again. And move away a safe distance from the conflicting voices in my head… 

Where are my meds?!

 

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The Anchorman and the Alien

Hello out there. Or, rather in there. Gotten into a quarantine/shelter-in-place routine by now? Staying inside except for some modest amount of outdoorsy excercise, or to walk the dog (and pick up that pooch’s poop, okay? Unless it’s dropping a load in your own backyard, making it optional). Then comes the absolute need to get out to the grocery store. Mask on. Sanitizer in hand. Gloves on. Keeping your distance. Of COURSE you re doing things as prescribed by the medical experts. By now you know the drill. And you know how surreal, unsettling, mind bending a matter of staying the course is until a vaccine is created. However, the course just circles back to the same day, in defiance to what a calendar may otherwise suggest.

It’s Groundhog Day meets the Day the Earth Stood Still.

Groundhog Day is a funny but soulful film. It has a trajectory of one’s becoming more sensitive and self aware in spite of being trapped in a repetitve external sameness that kicks-in at exactly 6. A.M., to Cher singing I Got You Babe on a clock radio. The Day the Earth Stood Still is an edgy sci-fi thriller, a confrontation with an obstinate alien power threatening to “reduce Earth to a smoldering cinder” if nuclear proliferation isn’t reigned-in, with the potential to send nukes into space and threaten other life forms–such as the alien, Klaatu, sent from his deep space domicile to read the riot act to leaders world-wide. These two references to classic movies are relevant to what is going on in Covid World: people are virtually living the same day over and over, sheltering-in-place and trying to break the monotony inherent in this strategic battle plan to conquer the virus, which literally is threatening all of humanity. How much different–other than varying degrees of mental readiness, gumption, finding a sense of renewed purpose alone or with some family, perhaps with just that pooch or a kitty–can each passing day be from what preceded it? And each and every day has the same global threat ingrained in it upon our awakening,

There has been much speculation on how we come out of this looping, quotidian sameness. Will we all have soul-searched and learned how to be a better person, even if you were already quite self-satisfied with the face that confronts you in the morning mirror? Too soon to say, I suppose. We are, weather we want to acknowledge it or not, transforming, perhaps imperceptably and unconsciously so. This event undeniably changes everything. It holds a mirror up that not so much reflects who we are but what we are. It demands reflection. Assessment and re-assessment. We are being pretty much forced to reconsider everything that came before this came along. We will never be the exact same again, even if you think you will be. You would have to have your memory scrubbed clean to not know that nothing can ever be exacly the same again. We are all acting like we have never had to act before, writ large or small. Impossible to honestly deny that it isn’t so.

Do we not feel an uneasy cautiousness that accompanies our every touch of any surface, or the needed suppression of suspicion of being endangered by that trip to get more toilet paper, knowing this is how that invisible virus spreads–by being among others? Does your proximity alert alarm go off when someone in that store or even on the walkways invades that six foot distancing strategy? We are all, in a way Phil Conners, the Groundhog anchorman anchored in the same day, day after day after day… We are all Klaatu, potentially the univited alien that threatens humanity, one contagious encounter at a time.

Ah, but do not despair!

Keep in mind, Phil Conners finally breaks out of his recycled same-dayness and is a better person for the ultimately transformative experience. Klaatu and his menacing robot, Gort, depart after having warned humanity that it needs to change it’s ways. When a vaccine is developed, however far off that is, Covid will depart, having also given us all pause as to how to make this world a safer, saner place, a world that will have learned its lesson about living recklessly, ignoring common sense behavior that collectively invites catastrophy and carnage.

That’s me trying to put a positive spin on what we are all stuck in. So, keep on truckin’. Keep the faith (whatever one you choose). Time is, after all, on our side in that it doesn’t stop. Whatever day we are finally free to start our renewed lives (safely and sanely), however many more days that may entail, with the alien threat still in place, know that each day is a day closer to living to see the adage This Too Shall Pass proving its inexorable, inherent truth.

Excuse me now, please. Time to wash my hands. Again. And again. and …

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