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Showing posts from February, 2017

Pointless Ruminations on the Absurd

The world around us is in no way required to conform to our expectations, beliefs, or desires. Rather, it is all but guaranteed to disappoint us, at least once or twice a lifetime. The loftier (or more deeply felt) our ideals, the more this may be true.

When we accept this incongruity and are keenly aware of it, but cannot change our thinking, absurdity steps in. The world no longer quite makes sense. It is untethered from rational or moral concerns, adrift in a bizarre joke told by no one.
Desire for normative order is often irrational and misplaced. Placing ethical constraints on amoral matters makes no sense. Yet these appear (sometimes, seemingly) inescapable conclusions. Hence the sensation of absurdity.

We can apply these incongruous demands to anything and anyone. But this is not a universal philosophy. It is a philosophy of the self, a diagnosis.

It's a hard life, you know.

America's foreign policy currently resembles the stumbling incoherence of a drunk well in his cups. A well oiled machine, indeed.Domestically, little has been accomplished since January 20th, beyond putting the courts to work. Republicans in Congress have partnered with the Trump Organization to make it far easier for coal companies to pollute and fill streams, and for schizophrenics to buy guns. Some things to crow about.The Donald keeps saying he inherited a mess, without explanation. I'm beginning to think what he means is, before he became POTUS, there was this inexperienced, dangerous guy set to take the position, and Obama didn't stop it from happening. It must be rough.At home and abroad, I think we can discern the beginnings of a Trump Doctrine in its fairly explicit, thorough-going rejection of the Obama Doctrine, "Don't do stupid shit." 'Do do stupid shit,' about sums it up, so far, don't you think?

Happy Valentine's Day

Mindful concentration and earnest effort make health, safety, and creativity more likely, but there are no guarantees. Every plateau has a cliff. Each incline can become a decline. These paths require attention. When we traverse uncertain ground in the darkness, if the wind sweeps past, we may keep our feet or we may lose our footing and tumble down.
When I requested February 14th off from work, I didn't expect to spend the day alone, you know. Now, it's just another day on which I should be doing chores. There is so much to do around my small apartment. It's almost amazing. But of course I realize, keeping our spaces clean requires persistent effort, as well.
Still, there are cliffs all around. Some of them seem treacherous, others quite comfortable.

Tactics

I have five suggestions for liberals, progressives, and others on the left:1) When talking about a Republican in Congress, specifically mention and tie that person to 'Republicans in Congress'. National approval ratings for the Republican party are nagative. The numbers for Congress are dire. Republicans in Congress are in charge of it, across the board. They own it, for now. They should be tied to it, and given the recognition they deserve.Most people do not know who Representative Jason Chaffetz is. A lot of people don't know who Mitch McConnell and Paul Ryan are. But they know 'Republicans in Congress'. Locally, folks are more likely to know (and support) their representatives or senators, but they don't really see those politicians as part of the general problem. Hence, 'Republicans in Congress'.2) Similarly, when talking about something a member of the Trump administration has done, make sure to tie it to the Trump administration, right off the bat…

Kellyanne Conway offers self defeating lies

When even Cosmopolitan is forced to call you out as a duplicitous propagandist, maybe it's time for journalists to stop taking your calls. There is no reason to assume Ms. Conway, of the "alternative facts", is at all concerned with truth. Her job appears to be to spread propaganda.I think the Cosmo article makes it clear she didn't believe 'the Bowling Green Massacre' was real at all, but was cynically dissembling. She was intentionally attempting to mislead us to justify her boss' unjusifiable travel ban aimed at Muslims. This is a textbook case of lying.More importantly, the US has already reacted to and fully addressed the shortcomings that allowed two Iraqis with terrorist ties into the US and Bowling Green, Kentucky. They would have been screened out in the current process.These men committed no 'massacre' anywhere, but had planted bombs in Iraq years before and intended to send assisstance to Al Queda in Iraq. They were not masterminds. The…