Monday, September 24, 2012


So, Jesus was married, and I have to assume that the marriage was consummated. So Jesus, unlike his mother, was no virgin. How, in Christ's name, is el Popo gonna spin this one. Sure, it's a 4th century papyrus, so it was probably written concurrently to the Council of Nicea, and might very well be a bit of heretic propaganda. Still, I can't fathom any reason for the author to lie...I mean any more than the Bible does. If only we could figure out who the lucky lady was; that lucky woman who screamed 'Oh God' for the first time, and really meant it. It seems to me that the catholic priesthood can finally unleash its hankering for a piece of ass that isn't at the north end of an altar boy's legs.

But the real point of this piece is scowling. I've heard it said many times that men age better than women, but that is simply not true. 99.9% of the human population age poorly, and it is easily read on their faces. People scowl, and you may claim that it's the result of that 'quiet desperation' thing, but I would argue that it's because they are flat out miserable; a misery created by the LIFE we choose to accept as normal; a LIFE shaped by outdated beliefs and paradigms (allow me to make it clear...that I am referring to god, work, sex, and marriage).

Little kids smile all the time, which leads me to believe that smiling is the most natural facial expression in our repertoire. My father always said that a smile requires fewer facial muscles than not smiling; that a smile is the more relaxed state; that stern, sullen, angry require our faces to work much harder. Kids smile in response to both internal and external stimuli. Adults, most often, smile only in response to the external; that phony, concocted 'it's so good to see you' thing. Adults look to others for a reason to smile. Kids  do not. Kids wear their smiles, and share them willingly. So, it logically follows that, as parents, trying to prepare our children for LIFE, we teach the smiles right out of them. This, if you accept my argument, makes most of us very bad parents.

That kid who shot up the movie theater in Colorado lost his smile. Yeah, I know, you think that is not a good enough reason, but, if I may gently point out, it is our fault. It isn't LIFE that stole his is us, and because of that, he deserves our forgiveness, our compassion, our apologies. We surrounded him with our collective misery, and our insistence on living lives that lead to misery. Collectively, we expect our children to live under the bell curve umbrella of strength. We expect our kids to be able to withstand the misery, to be strong enough, and we paint those who can't as either mentally ill, or the devil incarnate. We should forgive him. He deserves forgiveness. We do not. We perpetuate a LIFE in which we breed misery, and we all deal with it in our own way. Most scowl. Some shoot up movie theaters. All part of being human; human beyond the constraints we impose, human beyond the scope of our very, limited normal.

I imagine Jesus was smiling when he shot his first load into his wife, because sexing is an inherently joyous act. It takes a lot of work to kill the joy in sexing. Sex is certainly more joyous than buying a new Lexus, going to work, believing in god, or getting married. In each of these instances, there is a search for joy from the external. Joy resides within. It resided within you before you gave up on it.

I am also certain, that given the hard work of being a messiah, and the enormous pressure from his father to succeed, Jesus quickly lost the joy, and settled into the ennui of a good brisket at Rosh Hashanah. Likely the first son of god to utter the words...'not tonight, milk and honey...I have a headache'.

We build our lives on a foundation of straw, and upon that straw, we stack our acquisitions, and as we amass all those things we believe will make us happy, the weight of the whole pile of shit crushes our foundation, until all that is left is debilitating misery. This is what we commonly refer to as life, and that is the legacy we offer our children. Long ago, humanity accepted that puritanical, work ethic definition of life; that happiness comes from working hard, and having what the other guy has. It should be clear to you by now...before you grow old...that there can be no happiness without joy; there is no benefit to work, marriage, or praying without joy; a life without joy does not lead to happiness, it leads to inevitable disappointment, inevitable misery.

That chimp gene has probably screwed us forever. If only the bonobo had reigned supreme in the human gene pool. And now, we are only left with one real choice. Go fuck, or go fuck yourself. Oh god, YESSSSSSSSS.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Non Sequiturs

A few weeks ago, the LM and I went to a Patriots' exhibition game, where I was promptly introduced to two men who have profoundly changed my outlook on everything...the man with the orange sleeves, and the man in the green hat. Prior to my introduction, I had previously believed that the economic structure of Planet Earth was merely misguided. Now, however, I have come to believe that not only is it flawed by its adherence to outdated paradigms, it is completely fucked. You see, while the two men are irrevocably linked in their vocations by economic necessity, that there vocations exist at all is spectacularly mind-blowing. The man in the green hat is not the man in the orange sleeve's boss, but he does let him know when he must perform his job. Who it is that tells the man in the green hat when to do his remains a mystery, anonymously connected through headphones. So, what do they do you ask? Within the current-flow of ethereal information, some unknown entity tells the man in the green hat that a TV timeout is pending, and presumably gives him a countdown. When blastoff occurs, he informs the man in the orange sleeves that  it is his time to shine, at which point, the man in the orange sleeves crosses his orange clad sleeves across his chest (I did note that,on occasion, in a pique of apparent laziness, or perhaps the ennui of an incredibly exciting career, he would allow one arm to rest peacefully at his side), signifying to all on-field personnel that their professions were temporarily suspended in the interests of public educational advertisements.Following my introduction to these two titans of free enterprise, I did watch a football game (American football, Andy), yet I found myself involuntarily drawn into overly frequent 'Where's Waldo?' moments, perusing the sidelines to locate my new-found heroes. I will be forever grateful to the moguls of the NFL, for considering my amusement in their hiring of these two fine gentlemen.

It strikes me that Radiance is an incredibly odd name for a tampon.

And speaking of paradigms, perception, and political correctness, I have decided (with thanks to the nun) that it is perfectly acceptable to stare at a woman's breasts. Women have them, men like them, and the behavior is no less natural than a gorilla thumping his chest in recognition of a female in estrus, or puking in the commode after excessive consumption of gin (there's a dangling something in this sentence, but I don't care because it makes me laugh). Besides, the womens' movement has gone nowhere, if not backwards in the last 30 years. Just stand in a supermarket and watch the moms teaching their daughters to be 'good little shoppers'. Which leads me to my real point. We, as in collective humanity, have accepted nearly all the external paradigms in our lives. For instance, we accept that there is no stability without a national leader. I have long held the belief that the president of any nation does absolutely nothing, as I watch all those surrounding me, believing that the outcome of an election holds sway over the future. This, in the words of an old friend, is pure piffle. The president's sole function is to make us feel better, or worse. You cannot seriously believe that Barack Obama views the world outside the purview of what has always been. There are countries, and economic interests, national defense concerns, and blatant national aggression, and, of course, the religious right. This is the way it has always been. We teach it to our children. Imagine for a moment, a world with no nationalism or religion. Go ahead, tell me...what would we fight about? The wisest words I have heard in a long time are these (and I paraphrase)...The greatest enemy of religion is belief. Truth be told, the entire history of mankind emanates entirely from the purposeful perpetuation of past belief. We have always chosen to believe what was; never what could be. And that is why we are always fucked. That is why we tell our children that they could grow up to be President of the United States. Why not offer the alternatives. Why not offer them the possibility that the world would still exist without a United States; that they might offer a better alternative to blind jingoism and national interests.We look to the past and it's accomplishments for greatness because it has happened, and carries no part of what we fear most---UNCERTAINTY---which of course is the most prevalent constant of life.

It strikes me that what doesn't kill you, does not necessarily make you stronger.

And Curiosity has landed on Mars, and is doing some amazing things, yet most people want to talk about Mitt Romney, who has not done anything, so is thereby fully prepared to be president. I am certain that there are more useless human beings, but he is the most public of the lot. And why does he always walk around like he has a rabbit (and I don't mean the mammal) stuck up his ass? He has no right to wear jeans. Which brings me to Barack Obama. He is a well-intentioned, good and intelligent man. I like him even though he is fully wrong. There is no middle class to resurrect, and no industry in the USA which is capable of sustaining one. I can only have so many mini-marts.As computers emerge as the smartest entities on this planet, the world is in full reconstruction mode, and the old school just cannot see it. I know where I would like it to go, but that will not happen, as the Occupy movement has demonstrated; as it is firmly planted and growing on the sod of an outdated paradigm...capitalism.

Have I told you lately that I love you?

Perhaps, if we could simply accept and embrace the uncertainty, we could stop walking around with those bitter, sullen faces? Quiet desperation? There is nothing quiet about it. We have simply lost the imagination to hear it.

Cunt is a perfectly good word. So is Love. Although it might be time for us to learn the difference.

Bon Nuit


Friday, June 22, 2012

What's the difference?

This, dear reader, is merely another segment in my current 'let's get rid of government' series. For those of you who may not be interested, feel free to skip it, and continue floating along on your ship of accepted paradigms.

What is the difference between our government in the good old USA, and the government of any communist country? NONE!!!

Let us look a little more closely, shall we?

The vast majority of food (you know...the stuff we eat) is produced on huge farms, subsidized by the federal government, and administered by the fourth arm of the federal government, Monsanto. While you may believe that there are no food shortages, you need to look more closely. There is clearly a shortage of beef, as the average price of flank steak (once considered the pauper's cut) is approaching $12 per pound. As I have seen no decline in national barbecues, I must surmise that demand has remained stable, but supply has decreased. Similar examples might be cited for pork, chicken and broccoli, not to mention fiddlehead ferns. Food lines are avoided by the use of government stipends to the needy, thereby blurring the obvious conclusion: That food production here is no different than food production in Russia or Cuba.

Both the governments of the USA and Russia spent trillions and trillions of dollars fighting losing battles in Afghanistan. NO difference noted.

In the area of state-run mass production, there are similar conclusions to be drawn. While in the former Soviet Union all industry fell under the rule of national government, at this point in time, the US government has only subsidized the automotive, drug and banking industries. The difference? In the US, the feds don't fund their own mafia (at least not overtly).

OK, so as you can see, we are essentially a communist country. You might wish to contend that this is the land of the free. Try seceding from the union, and see how free you are. Try not paying your taxes. No, dear reader, there is nothing free in America.

Between the presidential election of 2008, and the midterm elections of 2010, campaign spending at the federal level reached approximately $9 billion, or $30,000 per American. As this is nearly double my current annual income, I am forming a PAC to fund my campaign for survival.

I could go about medical care, or unionization, or any other segment of societal structure, but the results would be the same. We are simply speeding by the writing on the wall, blind to the allegory in the cave that is out national persona. Time to find a better way.

Thursday, May 24, 2012 man's opinion

The other morning I was interrupted by Russell while I was blissfully void of any intention to fire my synapses, my stare as vacant as my head. He offered, "A penny for your thoughts", and reality concussed my floating brain. I would be the first to admit that my thoughts, even when cogent, are not worth anything approaching a penny, but nonetheless you, dear reader, are about to receive a healthy sampling.

The penny is worthless, so we might as well stop making them, especially given the current cost of copper (even when used to clad a cheaper aluminum slug). Eliminating the penny would provide two significant benefits. It would eventually eliminate a plethora of irrelevant adages, and secondly, it would make all of the incarnations of Ellen DeGeneres happy (It's 15 dollars, right?).

A penny saved may be a penny earned, but it is still just a penny. And in this world of economic inequity, you would be hard pressed to earn a penny in Darfur. The refugees in the southern Sudan may possess the wherewithal to be penny wise, but the likelihood that they become pound foolish is remote, at best. This example is perhaps extreme, but certainly not isolated. In fact, you can pick from roughly 75% of the world's countries and find similar scenarios. There is extreme poverty everywhere from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe.

The World Bank recently re-defined 'extreme poverty' as a situation where one tries to survive on less than 150 pennies a day. While I am certain that those few who run the World Bank have salaries that exceed the $1.50/day figure, I am also quite confident that the tuition for their educations...educations which allowed them to attain their lofty positions...also exceeded the figure they set. No 'extremely poor' students were they. If the average American tried to live on $1.50 a day, and still attempted to maintain their 'starbucks' habit, the personal deficit of the average american would soon approach our national deficit. Yet we insist that studying and quantifying poverty...studies performed by and for people who wouldn't recognize it if it was crammed up their a valid vocation for the highly educated. Perhaps, if they used their positions to actually do something about it (as they claim the numbers are down). But, I digress. For the real point of this post is to suggest we pay all our politicians at the 'extreme poverty' rate. I will now become extremely unpopular.

There is no such thing as a great country. America is not a great country; it is not even a great economic entity. There is no honor in defending a country; there is even less honor in defending an economic entity. By no means do I wish to confine these statements to the good old USA. There is no honor in defending Afghanistan, or Ireland, or Mali...OR ANY OTHER FUCKING COUNTRY. Countries, and their governments, exist for the sole purpose of legitimizing  greed. They do not exist to better the lives of their constituents. They exist to better the lives of the few who run, or control it. This is true for 'democracies' like the US or Great Britain. It is also true for the socialists, the communists, monarchies, and, lest I overstate the obvious, dictatorships. Countries and governments exist for the sole purpose of funneling wealth to the few. Just ask the ex-con who led Liberia for the details. That should suffice to prove my point.

Perhaps a brief glimpse at history, colored with the patina of my convoluted, linear thinking, is in order. We started with alpha chimps, who cheated, murdered, connived and fought their way to kingship. This can be verified upon closer examination of Hammurabi, Xerxes, Saul, pick an English one, Catherine the Great, pick a French one, pick an African one, pick and Oriental one, etc., etc., etc.. To solidify their dominion, they subsequently formed an alliance with God. This, of course, led a few beta chimps, possessed of more devious motivations, to cheat, murder, connive and fight their way to the papacy, replete with paths to plunder wealth and young boys asses. Now I think we must have gotten smarter over the millennia, and it is true that we have worked our way past that whole serf/king-who-owns-everything thing. But, you would be wrong. We continue to look to leaders (yeah, and God) to fix things, so we forgive the occasional blowjob in the Oval office, the all too frequent misguided war, the genocide of some ethnic minority, and certainly some gladhanding with big corporations and stock market manipulators. And yet, we still choose to believe in what our leaders have always told us, i.e. that America is the greatest country on earth; that working hard will get you what you want...and you will be happy. It is, as if, we have completely forgotten to think. Sure, the Bible may tell us not to fuck our neighbor's wife, but it must be ok for the televangelists because they speak directly to the big guy. That anyone...ANYONE...still belongs to the Catholic church, mystifies me. That anyone believes there is wisdom or integrity in the Democratic or Republican parties simple boggles my mind. It does, however, lead me to the understanding that evolution has come to a standstill, and unless we re-spark the engine, we are doomed to an eternity as blind followers. We may not all be alphas, but please tell we are not all mind-numb idiots. Perhaps we could all get together and begin a new movement. We could call it 'Occupy Your Own Mind'.

It is my belief that we will not move up on the evolutionary ladder until we learn to be kind; learn to offer kindness instinctively, without weighing the benefit. Perhaps, if we can reach the next plateau, we might come to understand that what we have come to accept as 'normal' life...DOES NOT MAKE US HAPPY...DOES NOT MAKE US BETTER. 

It is time for us to evolve...and to understand the need to deconstruct the horrible mess we have wrought, or, at the very least, accepted. Meanwhile, I will take comfort in one holdover from the old ways. You can't buy a gun for 150 pennies. 

Friday, February 17, 2012

Saint Valentine's Day

It absolutely sucks to be a Kurd. After surviving years of Saddam Hussein bombing their hopeful homeland with poison gas, and then finally being rid of him thanks to the unjustified intrusion of Allied Forces (it's not like we stuck our uninvited noses into the region to save the Kurds), now they have to suffer through bombs flying their way from Turkey. It is painfully clear that not only are they surrounded by people who both don't like them, and who are unwilling to concede them their own private Idaho.

I was reading about their most recent plight in the Boston Globe, and was struck by an adjacent advertisement for ice cream dishes. It was an ad from one of those hoity-toity jewelry companies that no one in existence can afford to shop at, save perhaps those one-percenters. In any event, the bargain basement price of $59.95 was touted, for a set of four. This, of course, is more than the yearly income of your average Kurd. This also explains why most people of the Middle East grow beards.

I, of course, also have a beard (well, a goatee actually), but my beard was grown for reasons of vanity, not as a symbol of my solidarity with the Kurdish people. It seems clear to me that their reasons for beard-growing, while perhaps rooted in some religious dogma, are purely economic. It should be obvious to all of you, that Gillette and Schick are also waging their own little wars against the Kurds. How else might you explain that a package of replacement cartridges for the average razor costs almost $30.00? Sort of an around-the-back version of the economic sanction. Fie! Fie! Fie!

According to CatholicOnline, Saint Valentine may have been martyred for marrying Christian couples during the persecution under Claudius II. Claudius II, of course, is not the Roman emperor who invented fisting. He was just some guy who didn't like christians. And when Valentine tried to convert him, he was rewarded for his efforts by being clubbed, stoned, and subsequently beheaded. This should explain why he is not only the patron saint of affianced and happily married couples, but also the patron saint of fainting, epilepsy and plague. So, it is entirely apropos that we celebrate his feast day on the anniversary of the very day on which he head was separated from his shoulders. This, unfortunately, is just another example of our historically misguided understanding of LOVE; for not only does it exemplify the futility of marriage, it also illustrates just how little your brain has to do with it.

In those moments when we venture out into the world in a truly open-hearted state, it should be obvious to even the moderately self aware, that we stroll through life's foibles and trials allowing love to embrace us, entirely in the absence of intellectual definition. In these moments, we do not choose who we love, only how well we love; how well we allow love to embrace us; how well we understand the reward of living.

I'm not going to pontificate on the subject any more. Life is is calling...and I have to go shave.

Friday, January 6, 2012

And thanks for all the fish...

Just to follow up on my last...jumbled...nearly incoherent...but nonetheless valid and bluefin tuna sold in Japan yesterday for $763,000!!!...or, in easier to understand terms...$1241 per pound. Far be it from me to make some specious argument regarding the inequitable distribution of wealth in the world, but in watching a video, I noted several street sweepers in Tokyo sitting down for a 12-pack of the bluefin a mere $24 per piece. This, of course, is the direct result of the scarcity of bluefin tuna in the natural world where they live...SOOOOO...let's take it a step farther...

The bluefin tuna can swim at approximately 943MPH (1508.8kph). This does not make an adult bluefin the easiest thing in the ocean to catch. To further prove my point, a newborn bluefin weighs a measly 3 ounces, and gains, at best, a couple pounds a by my calculations, yesterday's victim eluded capture for approximately 307 years. So, it would stand to logic, that there must be millions of tuna in the sea; we simply are not smart enough to catch them on a regular basis. In essence, we are overvaluing our own failure. If, per chance, the inverse is true, and we are indeed smarter than the bluefin tuna, then we are overvaluing the prescribed and proper supply of all things natural. (Do you think a tiger shark rues the shortage of tuna in the sea? It most certainly does not...and would definitely not pay extra!) (Do not check the math, or the numbers. I made them all up).

While the prior illustration should make it clear to all right thinking humans that no fish is worth all that money, it should also bring to light the dearth of all things intelligent in the Republican party. I know a fair number of republicans, and I would consider most of them fairly intelligent, so I cannot fathom how the current slate of presidential candidates in any way represents the 'best out there'. I challenge any Republican to defend any of the current choices as anything more than talking heads (though that is not entirely their fault, as the national media continues to behave as if they actually utter things of substance). If the Republican party has nothing better to offer, then the smart thing to do would let Obama run unopposed (can you imagine how grand it would be if he lost the election unopposed?) The bottom line is this: I wouldn't leave a child of mine in the same room with any of the Republican candidates, let alone imagine them as president.

But moving on. For the first time in nearly 50 years, homicide has fallen off the list of the top 15 causes of death in the US. This is surely a positive sign that we are evolving as a species. On a similar note, a young Haitian refugee, rescued under the auspices of a US charity after the island's earthquake, killed herself in Boston yesterday. One could argue that bringing an unprepared young woman to the 'safer' environment of the US, where her weekly rent undoubtedly exceeded her yearly income in Haiti, while kind, is also counter-intuitive to reasonable. You can't ask an uneducated victim to find happiness, amidst loneliness, in the dog-eat-dog world of venture capitalism. We care enough to save her, but don't care enough to help with her salvation.

It is high time to evaluate the capitalist model we accept as status quo in the US. As the lone Republican columnist of the Boston Globe pointed out today, the candidates being considered for president from the Republican ranks are not really pro-capitalism, as much as they are pro-business. This contention, at least, makes it understandable why they can condemn Romney for his time at Bain Capital, instead of condemning him for being a two-faced greedy businessman who projects himself as a fictitious do-gooder. Take it from me. He is an asshole.

But more importantly, the article goes on to discuss a major component of the capitalist idea, 'creative destruction'. This is the accepted tenet of our economic religion that states it is good for companies like Staples, or CVS, create new, more efficient outlets, while instituting the genocide of small, local stationary stores and pharmacies. It may be a wonderful life, but Mr. Gower be damned. All in the name of innovation and progress, and fatter wallets for the few.

The robber barons of the late 19th and 20th centuries certainly screwed vast numbers of Americans in pursuit of their own greed, but they also gave back, perhaps not purely altruistically, but certainly beneficially to the greater populace. There wouldn't be many free libraries, or art museums, if they hadn't, as these 'companies' can hardly be deemed profit centers. It is time to re-evaluate the capitalist model we accept blindly.

President Obama proposed combining several government agencies yesterday, in an effort to reduce the size of government. He did, however, stop short of eliminating the government all together, a policy which I have advocated on several occasions; which I guess is ok, since somebody has to keep an eye on us.

It is time for a leap of faith, a paradigm shift, regarding the economic model of this formerly great country. I will offer my ideas in the next sentence or two, but let me begin by saying that no government or corporation will in any way aid in its acceptance.

I actually have no problem with the usual supply-and-demand system per se, but it seems to me that it does not really allow for the satisfaction of those with demand that cannot afford the supply. And I believe the reasons for this are two-fold. The first problem is the general structure we have accepted as the norm; the existence of countries. Humanity initially organized into a system best described as tribal. We have obviously shifted away from this paradigm, primarily due to the specious perception that we need what we make. We have lost sight of what it means to survive comfortably. While we may be electronically entangled in a web of tenuous connection, that web does not really provide us with the connections we need. Instead, we have fallen prey to the advertised beliefs that what is offered is what will connect us all in some sort of communal consumerism. We form no meaningful connection through the iPhone, yet we let ourselves believe we do. This is further illustrated by the size of our homes. While we all need space, it is fundamentally contradictory to human need to have our children live a half mile away in the same house, disconnected by earbuds and distance. We break up the tribe even within the confines of our own homes. The second problem, of course, is our fear that we will not be able to attain something; this might be anything from a plasma TV to good health. This is the flip side of the loss of tribalism. We seek to belong to a tribe which is too large to be manageable. This is exemplified by our almost manic need to wear baseball caps, and anything with the North Face logo on it. Essentially, we have outsized ourselves, and don't know how to fix it. This is further aggravated by a system, in which we are governed by a nanopercentage of the nation's population, who are largely out of touch with reality, unless 'reality' is the further garnering of individual wealth from a privileged position. Government, if it is allowed to exist at all, has to become local, confined to overseeing a 'tribe' whose members share a common interest.

Capitalism can no longer exist as an entirely free market system, because it does not allow for the needs of the many. Given that what we have come to recognize as the primary suppliers of work in our society (read: heavy industry, manufacturing), and given that those workplaces continue to dwindle, we need to understand that there are simply not enough jobs for everyone, unless you live on the Indian subcontinent and know how to answer a phone. It is high time for the institution of benevolent capitalism, where those who can earn give the excess away to those that can't. Sure you say, we do that now, filtering millions of dollars to single mothers who don't work because they're too busy the mistaken belief that a man can fix things. But this is where we fail, because of our almost rabid need to judge these people. Hello, there are people in this world who are too stupid to work, let alone conceive of the notion of garnering wealth. If we could only see our believing that the common good, and the common wealth are indeed the right and kind alternatives, then perhaps we could create a world where kindness wins over conquest, where diplomacy wins over bullets and bombs, where everyone has the basics to survive. If we took the trillion dollars we spend on soldiering everyday, and spread the wealth to those who have naught, then perhaps envy and jealousy would not manifest as theft and murder. Ah, just the musings of a lunatic, I fear.

We insist that we live in the greatest country on earth. Wouldn't it feel better if we were able to say that we live in the greatest world on earth? If we can resolve to commit to the needed paradigm shift, and generously and non-judgmentally share our bounty, then perhaps we could create such a place. Unfortunately, the alternative is the only thing we already have.