Thursday, January 29, 2009
Monday, January 26, 2009
The trouble is that we have a bad habit, encouraged by pedants and
sophisticates, of considering happiness as something rather
stupid. Only pain is intellectual, only evil interesting. This is the
treason of the artist: a refusal to admit the banality of evil and the
terrible boredom of pain.
I have been in thinking mode again. raging, enormous, impatient and inherently
unsatisfying. I have thought too, about these periods where i think like this.The room is about three paces long and two wide: a mere broom closet
or disused tool room. In the room, a child is sitting. It could be a
boy or a girl. It looks about six, but actually is nearly ten. It is
feeble-minded. Perhaps it was born defective, or perhaps it has become
imbecile through fear, malnutrition, and neglect. It picks its nose
and occasionally fumbles vaguely with its toes or genitals, as it sits
hunched in the corner farthest from the bucket and the two mops. It is
afraid of the mops. It finds them horrible. It shuts its eyes, but it
knows the mops are still standing there; and the door is locked; and
nobody will come. The door is always locked; and nobody ever comes,
except that sometimes--the child has no understanding of time or
interval--sometimes the door rattles terribly and opens, and a person,
or several people, are there. One of them may come in and kick the
child to make it stand up. The others never come close, but peer in at
it with frightened, disgusted eyes. The food bowl and the water jug
are hastily filled, the door is locked; the eyes disappear. The people
at the door never say anything, but the child, who has not always
lived in the tool room, and can remember sunlight and its mother's
voice, sometimes speaks. "I will be good, " it says. "Please let me
out. I will be good!" They never answer. The child used to scream for
help at night, and cry a good deal, but now it only makes a kind of
whining, "eh-haa, eh-haa," and it speaks less and less often. It is so
thin there are no calves to its legs; its belly protrudes; it lives on
a half-bowl of corn meal and grease a day. It is naked. Its buttocks
and thighs are a mass of festered sores, as it sits in its own
They all know it is there, all the people of Omelas. Some of them have
come to see it, others are content merely to know it is there. They
all know that it has to be there. Some of them understand why, and
some do not, but they all understand that their happiness, the beauty
of their city, the tenderness of their friendships, the health of
their children, the wisdom of their scholars, the skill of their
makers, even the abundance of their harvest and the kindly weathers of
their skies, depend wholly on this child's abominable misery.
I sometimes hope that the thought rages lead somewhere, let me develop a
truly more compelling understanding, but I hope I would choose to have them
even if they are no more than the unimaginative ramblings of a mediocre mind.
Monday, January 19, 2009
Burns much brighter today
I can see my path though
Clouds darken my way
Yeah I've got this feeling
It's something I find hard to explain
See I wasn't looking
But girl I'm glad I fell in your way
I don't get to watch the inauguration tomorrow because I will be working. I mean I will follow it on the sites who are made up of people who are as deeply invested in this moment as I am and that will help, but I will not get to watch it as it happens. I won't get to see for myself that the power structure has changed and death doesn't follow.
Maybe 2012 is the end of the world or maybe it is just the beginning of the age of Aquarius and I'll get to see it. These times, this life, the content of the story as it is written, are immense and deeply satisfying. I have seen more than I could have imagined and now feel capable of observing and grasping even more. Maybe for a moment I know that the abstract story with no obvious points of intersect is as fascinating as the story of those who get to execute to long known desires. I look forward to tomorrow with unabashed hope.
Sunday, January 18, 2009
By mid-December 2008, his popularity ratings had plunged to 23% - only one point from an all-time low in every poll taken since 1938. Still, at 30% this month, this means that almost one in three Americans still approve of his job. H L Mencken must be wallowing in horror in his grave.
Coming close to destroying a superpower and the global economy virtually single-handedly is not bad for someone born with a silver spoon in his mouth who never held a steady job until the age of 45 - until "turd blossom" Karl Rove, the little, fat, bald Machiavelli, engineered him as the ultimate, corporate-pleasing, Southern Strategy lethal weapon, and Bush family consigliere James Baker turned a massive electoral fraud, mostly in Florida and Ohio, into a hijacked mandate via the Supreme Court. (American corporate media, by the way, loved it.)
Friday, January 16, 2009
Wednesday, January 14, 2009
Wednesday, January 07, 2009
BART has not released the officer's name, but The Chronicle has learned that the officer is two-year BART police veteran Johannes Mehserle, who turned 27 on Monday and whose first child was born within a day or two of the shooting - an event that may be a contributing factor to why Mehserle has not yet explained the shooting to investigators.
Monday, January 05, 2009
An e-mail written by a senior FBI agent in Iraq in 2004 specifically stated that President George W. Bush had signed an Executive Order approving the use of military dogs, sleep deprivation and other tactics to intimidate Iraqi detainees.
The FBI e-mail--dated May 22, 2004--followed disclosures about abuse of Iraqi detainees at Abu Ghraib prison and sought guidance on whether FBI agents in Iraq were obligated to report the U.S. military’s harsh interrogation of inmates when that treatment violated FBI standards but fit within the guidelines of a presidential Executive Order.
The FBI e-mail was obtained by the American Civil Liberties Union through a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit. The White House had emphatically denied that any such presidential Executive Order existed, calling the unnamed FBI official who wrote the e-mail “mistaken.”
The ACLU has called on Congress to demand that a special prosecutor be appointed to investigate whether the President and other officials broke federal and international laws, “including the War Crimes Act, the federal Anti-Torture Act, and federal assault laws.”
President Bush and his representatives have denied repeatedly that the administration condones “torture,” although senior administration officials have acknowledged subjecting “high-value” terror suspects to aggressive interrogation techniques, including the “waterboarding” — or simulated drowning — of three al-Qaeda detainees.