Monday, January 31, 2011

Good Art Outlasts Political Power

I was sitting, mindlessly passing the time, not focusing on anything particularly, when a thought came into my mind that I decided to expand upon and develop further. “Good Art outlasts the powerful people of the time the art was created.”

First example that comes to mind is anything Leonardo da Vinci created verses the religious power brokers that enforced their interpretations of religious laws and almost burned him at the stake for following science facts.
Conclusion: The Mona Lisa is one of the most visited artworks and is revered by many to be one of the best paintings of all time. Oh by the way, the sun does not revolve around the earth and the earth is not flat. So much for the religious inquisitions.

Pablo Picasso’s portrayal of the “Bombing of Guernica” by German bombers during the Spanish Civil War has more of a current message and meaning than Francisco Franco Bahamonde, who sanctioned the bombing act, emerging as the leader of the Nationalists government after winning the civil war with military aid from Italy and Nazi Germany.
Conclusion: The Spanish people are glad Franco is gone and requested the artwork be returned to Spain for permanent display.

The movie, “Citizen Kane,” is still revered with more reverence and admiration than the once powerful man it parodied, William Randolph Hearst.
Conclusion: Conservatively Political Hearst could never get elected to any political office, and the movie is still being played and enjoyed on Classic Movie TV.

These are just a few examples, and I am sure my friend, Microdot, can come up with many, many, many, more. So I would like to know everyone’s thoughts and examples on this subject.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

A Conversation with Richard Dreyfuss

I happened to turn on the radio and started listening to The Diane Rehm Show on NPR. She was interviewing Richard Dreyfus and I was soon engrossed by the program. What impressed me most was Richard Dreyfus’s prolific insight on Civics and the current political environment.

Below is the link to the transcript of that interview.

In speaking of the late President Kennedy, Richard Dreyfus said:
“In speaking of President Kennedy, that he had said things that were ahead of its time. He really was, I think, the last American president to lead the people. Sometimes to places where they didn't want to go and were reluctant and sometimes to a place where they wanted to go. And thankfully, civility is one of them and I had the privilege a few weeks ago -- a few months ago of watching his televised speeches about Civil Rights and it was a real shock to see an American president clearly out ahead of his majority. He was ahead of us and he was saying something that if we don't come to this place, we will have failed ourselves morally and it was a hell of a statement.”

Dreyfuss went onto say, “With such a peace, there will still be quarrels and conflicting interests as there are within families and nations. World peace, like community peace, does not require that each man love his neighbor, it requires only that they live together in mutual tolerance, submitting their disputes to a just and peaceful settlement. And if we cannot find an end to our differences, at least we can make the world safe for diversity. For in the final analysis, our most basic common link is that we all inhabit this small planet, we all breathe the same air, we all cherish our children's future and we are all mortal.”

“But isn't it interesting that even back then, President Kennedy was talking about civility, he was talking about differences of opinion, he was talking about how people get along in families, in communities and look where we are today.”

“Yeah, it's not a pretty picture and what he was doing in 1960, he could've been saying in 1760 or in 1460 or any year before that. Human nature is what it is. We are not Jaguars, we are not built for perfect efficiency, we don't laze away on a nice sunny day while the river runs dry and we don't always hunt only the huntable. We are human and we are diverse and we are silly and stupid and bright and intelligent and what is so extraordinary about the Constitution is that is was able to take into its creation the flaws and virtues of mankind as opposed to ignoring mankind completely.”

This next statement really impressed me:
Richard Dreyfus then went onto say, “When I ask students what was so revolutionary about our Revolutionary War, the answer is usually that we broke away from Great Britain. And I say, no, it was that for the first time ever, we were actualizing the idea that the ruler and the ruled were one thing and that the people were not the audience to the performance of the nobility, that we were all the same value and all contributed. And that was at the time probably the most important message in 13,000 years of politics.”

Later on in the program Diane Rehm played a segment from Mr. Holland’s Opus where Richard Dreyfus’s charter states:
“No, no, do not misunderstand me. I am not talking about my job. I am talking about the education that students once got at Kennedy High versus the education that you people are willing to give these kids today.” Then later goes on to say, “Oh, come on, Michael. You know, the big problem here is that you people are willing to create a generation of children who will not have the ability to think or create or listen.”

Diane Rehm then asked, “And it would seem to me that in real life, Richard Dreyfuss, you believe that what teachers consider to be their best right now is not good enough. And that students are not living up to what they could.”

Richard Dreyfuss reply, “There's a word in English that should be far more familiar to all of us and the word is exemplification. You can't exemplify reason or logic or goals of virtue unless you exemplify them and if you only exemplify, for instance, the public discussion of politics as something that is yelled and screamed and interrupted and patronized, then that becomes public discourse. And because you cannot scream reason, your advertisers will support screamers first. And so you raise two, three generations of people who don't know what reason sounds like, who don't know what a public discussion of a public issue can sound like without the melodrama of talk show radio or being demonized. And when you have a representative democracy, sooner or later, you have to get down to a definition which includes the willingness to share political space with those with whom you disagree, but if you demonize, you're not sharing anything.”

Later again in the program, Richard Dreyfuss said he had written the article because, “I was so hurt and offended by President Bush's casual inclusion of torture in the American Political Lexicon, something that had almost achieved the iconic level of taboo and he brought it back as if it was, you know, higher taxes or lower taxes.”

To later continue on with this thought:
“Teach our kids practical political power, teach it to them as their brains develop and can accept it more and more in its complexity, but teach it to them before they graduate high school so that they have a sense of ownership and pride. And that the next time someone tries to steal America, which is now a commonplace daily activity -- when someone tries to steal America from Americans, those future monarchs of this system will know when they're being flimflammed and what to do.”

“The fundamentals aren't there. When I was a kid, I was in love with America. I was -- my father and his generation had saved us from the most vivid civics lesson in history, Adolph Hitler. And when Hitler -- when we realized that Hitler meant every word he said, we stopped the whole world, went over to Europe and beat him to death because we knew we were not going to do that world.”

“But when it comes to the study of history and the study of the ethics involved with the writing of the Constitution and how incredible a coincidence in history it was that we could gather those men from the enlightenment era and actualize something that no one had ever thought to actualize. For them to do that and for us to learn it in its context is to make people aware of a pride of a country that is deserved and substantive, as opposed to being asked to love your country for no particular reason whatsoever.”

Diane Rehm then asked, “Is that your great concern that young people do not, in this era, grow up with the sense of pride in their country? “

In which Richard Dreyfuss replied, “I think it's one of the consequences. Another probably more important is that we grow up without any sense of connection and responsibility. We grow up without accountability and we grow up oddly enough without reward and punishment. Republican democracy is a two-way street where the people are not only the rulers, they are the people. And not only are they the rulers and the people, they are the neighbors in business, they are the neighbors in nursing, they are the neighbors who you are, in one way or another, accountable for and to, to make your society better. And when you remove that sense of responsibility from, let's say, local business and local business starts to recreate what used to be known as let the buyer beware, I can sell you a piece of junk. And if you don't catch me you can't do anything to me.”

I highly suggest everyone go to the link site and read for yourselves the transcript of this interview program. I personally found it to be very epific, and thought provoking.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Sarah Palin's Weird WTF “Sputnik” Story

On Wednesday night, Sarah Palin attacked the “Sputnik Moment” line from President Obama's second State of the Union address.

Sarah went on to say, “That was another one of those WTF Moments, when he so often repeated this Sputnik moment that he would aspire Americans to celebrate. And he needs to remember that what happened back then with the former communist USSR and their victory in that race to space, yes, they won, but they also incurred so much debt at the time that it resulted in the inevitable collapse of the Soviet Union.”

Sarah Palin in her Tea Party’s counter point rant, wildly misconstrued the president's argument, which was not about emulating the Soviets in the 1950's but instead about the Americans who responded to early Soviet success in space exploration by educating themselves and out-innovating the Soviets. I am seriously doubtful that Sarah could comprehend or more to the fact that did she even listen to the speech?

But let's pretend that wasn't Obama's point. The Soviets didn't have an empire-draining debt problem until some 30 years after Sputnik passed over America. And when they did, it was in large part a result of massive overinvestment in heavy industry, which supported Soviet military pretensions (Much like Bush and Cheney did). None of this is to argue that the Soviet economy is anything we should emulate. But let's at least get the basic facts right when we criticize it.

It's a fair guess that Palin thought she was borrowing her "insight" from the mythology of Ronald Reagan, who massively increased America's spending (Which took the U.S. from being the largest Creditor Nation to the largest Debtor Nation running up the largest record U.S. debt at that time. A fact the many self proclaiming Conservatives conveniently forget.) to spur the sort of competitive expenditure that contributed to the ballooning of Soviet debt in the 1980's. According to many conservatives, this was a crucial factor that catalyzed the Soviet collapse.

But in claiming that the Soviets incurred their consequential debts long before Reagan was president, Palin ends up arguing that the Gipper wasn't nearly that responsible for the USSR spending itself to death. If a reverence for Reagan's anti-Soviet spending inspired her narrative in the first place, then this is incoherent. If she's just making this all up, then she's really also claiming that the “Reagan Brought Down The USSR” narrative is overstated.

Palin appears to be lazily checking a lot of Fox News boxes. She wants to criticize Obama's State of the Union address, so she grabs hold of the Sputnik line. She wants to make a point about debt, so she invents a history in which the USSR had a debt crisis decades before this inference could have made much sense. Even better -- her argument sounds like an implicit vindication of Reagan, but that really just makes it either self-contradictory or hostile to Reagan's legacy.

Even worse, it seems that Palin planned her rhetorical disaster; as she goes on to discuss the "Spudnut Shop," a bakery in Washington State that's succeeding without government support.

Sarah Palin’s latest demonstration of her personal lacking qualities are yet more evidence that her judgment in both what she says and who she has vetted, is pathetic. It's not even cleverly manipulative. It is just sad and speaks volumes of those Tea Party members who follow her!!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

House Majority Leader Eric Cantor: I Believe President Obama Is A U.S. Citizen

Well once again we see the Republican Leadership throw the “Ultra Conservative Wing Nuts” under the bus even after whipping them into a frenzy by their own propaganda machine. Yes once the “NUT JOBS” have served their purpose for every election, the Republican Party Leaders tosses them aside with distain and as much compassion of used toilet paper.

The new Republican House majority leader says he doesn't think questions about President Barack Obama's citizenship should play a role in the discussion of policy matters.

Two years into the Obama administration, so-called “BIRTHERS” continue to argue that Obama isn't a natural-born citizen and that he hasn't proved he's constitutionally qualified to be president. Birth records in Hawaii haven't dissuaded them because they believe anything and can be mislead from the likes of Rush Limbaugh and the other Blow Hard Media Machine Personalities. It should also be noted that many of these Birthers are also Teabaggers.

House Majority Leader Eric Cantor says he believes Obama is a citizen and that most Americans are beyond that question.

Appearing Sunday on NBC's "Meet the Press," Cantor refused to call people who question Obama's citizenship "crazy," saying it's not nice to call anyone crazy. (But any critical, intelligent, free thinking person knows they really are!)

Cantor went onto say, He believes that Obama wants what's best for the country and that there are honest disagreements over how to achieve that.

WOW!!! Imagine that…..President Obama wants what's best for the country!!!

Well Mr. Eric Cantor, thank you for that clarity of thought but more importantly, admitting it in the public forum of NBC’s “Meet the Press.”

WAKE UP are really not a factor in the real world but nothing more than a bad joke to be used at every national election! Dumbass Lemmings....nothing more.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Todd Palin Sex Scandal?

Here we are again with the gift that just keeps on giving.

Yes Mr. Sarah Palin has allegedly cheated on Sarah with Shailey Tripp, a massage therapist who was arrested for prostitution last year!

Sarah Palin's spokespeople have, of course, denied the allegations, but “The Enquirer” now claims that there are “official documents” and “physical evidence” concerning the connection between Todd Palin and Shailey Tripp, an Alaska woman who was arrested on prostitution charges stemming from a Craigslist “massage” service.

According to the tenants in the building of her offices, they saw Todd come and go often and heard noises that sounded like someone was having sex. It was the same tenants who called the police on her.

Well it looks like with the darling of the Tea Party’s rating falling to a record low (or her unfavorable ratings at a record high), which ever way you want to look at it, due to her own self imploding dumb ass actions of recent events; Sarah Palin’s beloved Todd and father of her children, was playing trains with a “massage (prostitute) service” woman. Yes Trains…..he was Casey Jones and Shailey Tripp was blowing his whistle. I am also of the mind that his piston was building a lot of frictional heat in her cylinder…..Making the wheels on the train to round and round.

When asked, Sarah Palin said that it was just a little “ITTY BITTY” train piston.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Albert Einstein

Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Crosby, Stills, and Nash's "Find The Cost Of Freedom"

I have been somewhat solemn these last few days trying to comprehend the latest evens in Arizona. My mind constantly kept going back to the Crosby, Stills, and Nash song. I found this clip I thought that I wanted to pass on as it does project my feelings at this time.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Sarah Palin Had Gabrielle Giffords In Figurative Crosshairs Over Health Care Vote

I have copied this Sarah Palin Facebook Target Chart from a good blogging friend, “Microdot” who has a great blog

Of course as soon as this Sarah's Teabagger Target Chart could have cost Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords life, Sarah Palin took it off her Facebook site.

I think that it should be made known to Every Responsible Citizen of the United States the kind of inflammatory rhetoric that Bimbo Barbie Palin has been propagating to too many sick minds that can be found within the Tea Party. Remember Sarah’s cute little statement, “Don’t Retreat….Reload!!!"? On Sarah’s cute and perky but truly “Maverickie” little chart, please note:

“Gabrielle Giffords-AZ-8” and the rifle scope crosshairs.

Moments after the shooting, her father, Spencer Giffords, 75, was asked by the New York Post if she had any enemies. “Yeah,” he replied, “the whole tea party.”

The shooting comes on the heels of two unusually contentious years in American politics in which lawmakers were shouted down at town hall meetings and many offices were vandalized including Gabrielle Giffords.

After today's devastating news, Sarah Palin released a statement on her Facebook page.

"My sincere condolences are offered to the family of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords and the other victims of today's tragic shooting in Arizona," she wrote. "On behalf of Todd and my family, we all pray for the victims and their families, and for peace and justice."

Well here is my official released EngineerOfKnowledge’s statement to Sarah Palin and her "SEX GIMP" Todd……ROT IN HELL ASSHOLES!!!

Arizona’s Congressional Rep., Gabrielle Giffords, Was Assonated Today

Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, D-Ariz., and three others were shot and killed in Pima County near Tucson today, Saturday, January 8, 2011; when an assailant opened fire in an area where the lawmaker was meeting with constituents in Tucson, congressional officials said.

These officials said one of the victims died soon after the attack, and others were taken to a nearby hospital.

The officials said the wounded included some of Gifford's aides who were with her at the time.

One official added the attack was carried out with an automatic weapon.
The officials who described the events did so on condition of anonymity, saying they were not permitted to comment publicly.

They said the FBI and local law enforcement were investigating the attack, which took place while Giffords was greeting constituents outside a grocery store.
Giffords, 40, was re-elected to her third term last November. She was a member of the Arizona House and Senate before coming to Washington.

She first won election to Congress amid a wave of Democratic victories in 2006. In November, she edged a tea party favorite.

Could this have been her offence that warranted her death in someone’s sick mind….She is an incumbent Democrat who defeated the Tea Party’s Candidate? I am afraid that as I have predicted many times in my comments, this was a Fanatical, Conservative Nut Job, Teabagger Assignation.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Mother Jones (Mary Harris Jones) 1837 - 1930

American Labor and Community Organizer

I learned in the early part of my career that labor must bear the cross for others' sins, must be the vicarious sufferer for the wrongs that others do.

This statement was true 100 years ago…..and still true today. In retrospect….nothing has really changed has it?

Monday, January 3, 2011

2011 Republican Congress Show Themselves To Be DUMB ASSES

The Freshly Empowered Republicans are vowing to undo much of the work of the last Congress and launch investigations into a raft of Obama administration programs.

But their heavily partisan strategy runs the risk of alienating voters who are more concerned about jobs. (Remember, “It’s The Economy Stupid!?!?”)

At a moment when the Republican Party has the attention of economically beleaguered Americans, they will squander their efforts and time on repealing the Healthcare overhaul, challenges to federal regulations, and A READING OF THE CONSTITUTION ON THE HOUSE FLOOR. (Boy that will really get things going to bring back jobs and get the citizens of this country back to work!! Where are the “Dumb Ass Teabaggers” who voted for this group now?)

For me this new Republican Congress is just all flash and no substance…..and I can hardly believe that the citizens of this country fell for this act yet once again.

The cold hard truth is, the RNC is showing itself to be a debt-ridden, financially broken machine and yet this same group is expecting to spend over $1 BILLION dollars to try to unseat President Obama in 2012.

Those same Republican Party leaders, who are currently passing themselves off as being the clear choice for the country to be physically responsible with our U.S. National Budget Deficit, has led their own Republican Political Party finances after the 2010 mid-term National Elections, $20 MILLION in debt to date and expect to lead my Republican Party into a $1 BILLION dollar Presidential political campaign into 2012?

Well my question to those physical financially responsible Republican Party Leaders…..who is supposed to pay this $20 MILLION dollar bill? Who is supposed to pay the $1 BILLION dollar 2012 bill?

Could these Republican Leaders be just another Group of Blowhards who are not about to practice what they preach? I think that the latter is more to the factual truth.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

1911 Titanic’s Hull Was Launched

In 1911, a hundred years ago this year, the “Great Unsinkable” Titanic’s hull was launched on 31 May 1911. On 15 April 1912, the Titanic sunk in the North Atlantic on its maiden and only voyage.

Now I think that there is a teaching lesson to be learned using this as an example.

1. Those of the higher economic stratification, the world's wealthiest basking in the elegance of first class accommodations, got life vest, were allowed to enter the life boats, and were of the few passengers that survived. Most of the life boats were not even full as they left the Titanic leaving many to die that could have been saved.

2. Those remaining fifteen hundred people still aboard of the working class economic stratification, did get issued a life jacket but life expectancy would be short when exposed to water four degrees below freezing, were not allowed to enter the life boats, only to perish in the cold, dark, deadly, seas.

This year, 2011, the Economic Condition of the United States is becoming a reality. Many thought that the Capitalist Economic “Titanic” Strength of the United States was unsinkable too. The fact is today that out of every $1.00 spent by the Federal Government, $0.42 is borrowed from China. Now you factor in what is borrowed from Japan, Dubai and Saudi Arabia, this figure just gets worse. The economic policies especially of the last 10 years have been an all out attack on the Upper and Middle Class of this nation.

Many are now recognizing the ruse that has been presented to the masses and misled many to think that if you give more to the higher economic stratifications that this will cause a “Trickle Down” condition to their working class stratification. ("Please Sir, may I have some more" undeserving weak mind set) Well we as a nation have given these policies an opportunity to work for the last 10 years and the results have been; loss of employment, lower personal savings, less purchasing power, owning the crushing national debt, and postponed long term retirement potential. (working until they die)

The Conservative Republican President George W. Bush along with the large majority Conservative Republican House and Senate inherited a record operating budget surplus and turned it into a record budget deficit!!! But Conservative Radio and Fox TV has somehow laid the blame on "Tax and Spend Democrats!"

Word lesson for today is Nihilist: "A doctrine that denies any objective ground of truth and especially of moral truths."

Unfortunately there is still a slight voting majority that believes this is fact. Maybe the 2012 election will become more enlightening to this group.

Let us review.

1. After financially abusing the economic deregulated conditions, those of the higher economic stratification got large financial industry bailout, awarding themselves large annual bonuses from this bailout money, special “Life Boat” tax deferments codes that reduces their tax burden share obligations, being awarded “No Bid War Industry” contracts, making their economic stratification survival much more assured.

2. Those of the Upper and Middle working class economic stratification, losing their employment, seeing their personal savings dwindle, retirement plans decline knowing that they are going to have to work longer in old age life with the realization that they may not be physically able to, the purchasing power of their wages exponentially get less through the printing currency to appear to pay off these national debt loans, being blamed for abusing unemployment insurance payments (that they have paid into their whole working life) because they were just lazy, expected to be thrown out of their homes and have their families starve, and excepted to not complain about this fact only to perish in the cold, dark, deadly, Economic Seas.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Happy New Year!!!

I was thinking and reflecting last night….it is hard to believe that the FIRST DECADE of the SECOND MILLENNIUM has just past.

In the early 1970’s when I was in my early 20s, I remember thinking that I had a good chance to live long enough to see the year 1984. This being the title of one of my favorite books and a title of a David Bowie song from his 1974 album Diamond Dogs at this time, made a personal impact with this thought. This epiphany stayed with me until that date passed and life went on to the next milestone…..the end of the 20th century and introduction of the Millennium.

This just seems like yesterday but now the first decade of this new millennium has just past last night. (Now that I extend this thought, it really passed last year in 2009 didn't it because it started with the year 2000) Oh well I did not think about it until last night. Screw it....

So I will now close this posting with, “What I do know for sure, the years to come will truly be a BRAVE NEW WORLD!” Another good book by the way!!! :-)