“AND SOME, I ASSUME, ARE GOOD PEOPLE.”

Source

You can be racist to the marrow and yet declare that each of your bones is bigotry free.

Racism gets results. Racism garners votes. Racism even improves approval ratings.

Trump’s approval with Republicans rose by 5 points in a poll taken after his racist tweets

Reverse racism is as prevalent as Marxist Fascism. Literally.

Nice People — a short post I published on July 16, 2015, exactly one month into the Trump Era, the original essay of the same name was written by Bertrand Russell in 1931.

I have never seen so many nice people as I am seeing today. Racism finds comfort in White niceness, traditions, heritage, genealogy, histories. Any complicity with this nation’s wanton acts of evil gets glossed over with thick coatings of wash. Is genocide a sad but necessary concomitant of destiny? The price of progress, culture, and civilizations forged by the European? “You can’t make an omelet without breaking eggs” has convinced many an apologist of genocide , including Walter Duranty, Pulitzer Prize winner and fervid Stalin apologist.

History is taught to bow to the founding fathers: to the White men who conquered the Lands to serve the greater cause of manifest (if you are White) destiny. Destiny led to the genocide of Indigenous Peoples by the million, eliminating tribes by the hundreds, and destroying wild animals by the billion.

Remember why we really remember the Alamo — to nationalize Mexican land to the Rio Grande and up the Pacific sand, but to keep the cool-sounding Spanish town names.

The proper study of mankind is (White?)man, according to essayist Alexander Pope (1799), a self-referential congratulatory assumption by an author who just happens to be a White man. White men define Western Civilization to represent millenia of advances, that you have the White man to thank for all discoveries, inventions, science, technology, art, literature — including the plunder and pillage that happened along the way. The history books of the 1950’s credited a single Black, George Washington Carver, with the invention of peanut butter. End of story. Never was Eli Whitney and his cotton gin ever forgotten. History classes are always propaganda mills. Reverse racism is spirit-deadening stuff.

Erasing racism requires nothing short of recompense, retribution, and reparation. How much stolen principal and long-term interest has accrued in the coffers of the descendants of White Europeans who eviscerated the lives of Blacks stolen from the very birthplace of mankind.

My ancestors arrived from Catholic Europe. They left a worse place for a better place, but not in the holds of slave ships. Does that matter? Yes. Enormously. “Send the back” rewards the liar and the echo chamber resounds with the latest racist soundbite. The number of Black voices in the U.S. Catholic presence is miniscule in size, and you’ll never hear any programming that addresses the “inexplicable” absence of Black congregants. EWTN raged at Obama, the worst POTUS conceivable. With a plurality of 5 Catholics on SCOTUS, their affection for Trump is more than palpable.

Black citizens were lynched by the thousand in this country — hate can be very self-righteous. Lynchings were a public spectacle that drew large crowds. Newspapers would announce their commencement for the convenience and edification of their readers. Did you know that the majority of the curious attendees were White? Does it matter that the majority of attendees were White, that there just may have been a few reverse racists in those public gatherings at the town square? Of course, it is impossible to rule that out statistically.

Nice, respectable, hardworking, decent Americans who enjoyed law and order, voted for judges who were tough on crime. The nastiest criminals get away with it while remaining “pillars of society.”

The police could not (or would not) protect the victims from the mob. This is still the case. Racism defends the guilty while destroying their victims and making their victims serve the time.

White-Supremacist identity politics is jealous, sensitive-to-criticism, it is a privileged brand of entitlement. White Supremacy is a never expiring card that has its privileges. In short, it is a wild card, a Trump card — THE race card.
White-Supremacist identity politics wages endless war to fuel the most profitable economy on the planet: Munitions. A bullet expended, or a bomb exploded, or a drone destroyed triggers a purchase order for replacement. “The Defense Department” is an ugly misnomer, another piece of propaganda in the wall.


K-12 is Whitewashed propaganda served up as patriotism, disinfected of any facts that do not fit the White narrative, delivered in soundbites approved by a Texas textbook-approval mill and taught in all 50 states in the same bland white-bread way. No one wants to be lied to, to be confronted with opposing views that question the narrative.

Blacks have access to fewer-and-fewer decent schools, yet are blamed for being undereducated. Always.

Blacks get sent to prison early and often, incarcerated for minor infractions or trumped-up infractions, or for existing while Black. Kalief Browder was not the exception to that rule. Private prisons operate under the principle: one prisoner, one unit of profit.

Black youngsters such as The Central Park Five fear the police for profoundly good reasons. Trump is the poster boy for racists wannabes from coast to coast. A vaunted and respected voice that speaks not a word of decency.

Thanks for reading.

The One Branch(es) of Government

The Confederate Corporations of America announced additional wealth-management relief measures in its evolving mission statement. Most of the changes replace misleading names through the Confederate Truth in Governizing Act.

The misleading term “Partial Government Shutdown” becomes “The Parting-out of Government Share Act.” Funds previously misdirected to wasteful departments and agencies now funnel up into wealth-management relief services.

Public Service Announcement:

The Earth was doing just fine before environmentalists decided to take things in their own hands to bury a car, hug a tree, eat miso soup… If you worry about global warming, act locally to raise money through bake sales, lemonade stands or garage sales. We all have to die from something, so stop worrying.

SNAP miscreants may now be served directly at the supermarket. Participants of the new redemption program will find comfortable picnic tables behind the markets. The marginally-edible product otherwise destroyed becomes available for miscreants, and supermarkets get a boost to their profit margin — a win/win situation for everyone. Two more wins: the picnic tables are near the waste-storage units and may be used by lower-level miscreants after hours. Resource units who previously collected a paycheck at an eliminated agency may now apply for food-distribution facilitator positions.

Changes at the Top

The Decisionator Branch of Government becomes the one and only Branch, heading all governing arms and phalli.

This is the actual opinion of this author, who is decidedly not a fan of Number 45. I shudder to think that it might be taken literally.

The Legitimating Department transcribes tweets tapped by the Decisionator, now recognized as “The Intent to Govern.” Citizenship rights are allocated according to the principle “one dollar, one vote.”

The Originalist Court interprets tweet laws to ensure that they serve the intent of the Whiteous framers of the Constitution and The Natural Law: citizenship by dint of property and wealth.

The First Amendment is repealed so that the Second Amendment can become The First, perhaps the only. The scales of Lady Justice are money wasters. The officer on the beat knows how to color between the lines. Questionable police actions are no longer officially disdained.

News Tidbits

Cheese Corp recognizes a new CEO at Foxconn. Welcome, Scott Walker!

Hollywood Corp has announced its new license-plate slogan: In Gaud We Trust.

Did you know that there are currently Thirteen Corporations in America? Yes, one for each star on the New Confederate Flag.

Thanks for reading.

Barnyard-Animal Values

Humans are not the only Earth residents born with an inalienable right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Homo sapiens are not the only Earthly beings born to thrive, to live long and prosper, to experience joie de vivre. They do not show up at your door intending to be killed and dissected for humane consumption. More likely, they will run as soon as you open the door.

comparative anatomy

Running for your life: is it instinctual?

Vegan humans reject a conventional “wisdom” that deems beasts naturally occurring resources, food options, and fashion statements. NonVegan humans devise clever ways to subdue and conquer, to enslave, to transport “livestock” to butcheries, tanneries, renderers. Dominion (dominance) over animals is an arbitrary human conceit.

How many animals can you name that have intensely complex central nervous systems? Highly developed processes relay sensory and autonomic information to the brain. Gaze into a pig’s eye and know how much you share, how much you communicate, how much information transfers in the blink of each eye. Is it comparable to looking into a child’s eyes? That’s a loaded question. A barnyard animal’s heart was already beating prenatally inside her mother’s womb. Her fate was already decided, but not by her mother.

Does a pregnant cow know that her calves will disappear immediately upon departing the womb? Is she relieved at having her children separated from her teat so that bovine milk might be redirected into ice cream and casein? Is her boy prepared for a vealy good future?

Where are the bovine fathers? Insemination is artificial, so the point is moot. Long ago sets of bovine ancestors lived as nuclear families. Is this irrelevant information?

Does a sow wish her piglet a brutish life, an incarcerated existence and an early death?

plants.feel.pain

Anthropomorphism does not explain the enormous emotional and physical characteristics that humans share with barnyard animals. I envisage a book about such animals as a sanctuary that offers a refuge from the colossal carnage that occurs every second of every day.

Veganism is the only conceivable way to counter global warming. Many nonvegans recognize that reality but consider it unrealistic, unfortunately, the reality is as realistic as real can possibly get.

Q. Why did the chicken cross the road?

A. To get hit by the truck that conveyed her family to death camps: meat-processing facilities, if you will.

Please consider reading my earlier posts on vegan alternatives

Thanks for reading.

 

Surprised by Sudden Sounds

Hello, what?

A firsthand account of a hearing challenge, one told in the first person. That’s what. Hello in there, hello.

Simone: I know you’re right, Pee-wee, but…

Pee-wee: But what? Everyone I know has a big “But…? C’mon, Simone, let’s talk about *your* big “But”.

Before opting for a $400 pair of hearing aids, I asked some friends and relatives if they were happy with a pair of ear inserts, ones that had cost twice as much as the shiny new automobile I purchased in 1973 (an AMC Gremlin if you must know). Each wearer had a big but that for one reason or ‘tother, so I just kept on mishearing words — mis-heards that made me the butt of many an “Are you deaf?” joke. My sister-in-law works with the elderly, she recognized the dynamic, remarking that many who mishear are falsely diagnosed as suffering from “dementia”.fork.and.knife

Oliver Sacks, the sorely missed independent thinker,  wrote an opinion piece for the New York Times that captures his personal experience with hearing loss: “Mishearings.” A timely take on the mind’s capacity for assigning meaning to spoken language.

And yet there is often a sort of style or wit — a “dash ”— in these instantaneous inventions; they reflect, to some extent, one’s own interests and experiences, and I rather enjoy them. Only in the realm of mishearing — at least, my mishearings — can a biography of cancer become a biography of Cantor (one of my favorite mathematicians), tarot cards turn into pteropods, a grocery bag into a poetry bag, all-or-noneness into oral numbness, a porch into a Porsche, and a mere mention of Christmas Eve a command to “Kiss my feet!”

 

Hearing loss had removed many unfortunate sounds: the song of birds, the snores of Loki the Cat, the sussurance of the familiar, the soothing and the calming. However, at this very moment I am listening to the sharp, measured and deliberate crunches Loki is making — less than a meter away.

 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
Bird Sounds on DirtNKids 🙂

 

I am able to attend Arabic language classes at the local masjid once again, to actually understand the critical meanings lost to mishearings. It’s wonderful to join in with a measure of confidence that was quite impossible before 🙂

Now here is an unexpected but welcome circumstance: turning the devices off stills the din, the conical insert even acts as an earplug of sorts.

Now I jump into a wild cacophony of sound with a grateful soul. According to the instruction manual, it’s a gradual process that takes a bit of patience. I’ve only worn them for a week now, so my mind is still refreshing the inventory of sounds unheard for many years: floorboards squeak, a wall clock clicks with each passing second (I’ve timed it!) and my feet make a sweeping sound on a carpet.

Thanks for reading.

 

Dem German Endings

You may get PTSD, but learning German is a good way to learn the grammar you forgot — or the grammar you never learned. German is as fulsome as it is fulsome in that respect, something like a built-in sentence diagram.

german.cases.cartoon

There are 16 ways to say “the” in German. Just as there are 16 ways to say “the” in English?

No. Each of the 16 ways in German tell you the gender, number and case of the following noun. So just IN CASE…

Having taught the language for decades I’ve found some tricks for avoiding German’s paradigms from hell, that’s what they are — and no mistake. Something they don’t tell you about until it’s too late to drop the class, I am hoping that this post serves as warning. It may be too late for me, but not for thee.

german-article-adjective-and-pronoun-chart-updated
I found this “visual aid” at the following site. It’s a genuine P-O-S in my humblest opinion — ein Stück Scheisse.

Take a look at the über busy “visual aid” to the right. It’s a genuine P-O-S in my humblest opinion — ein Stück Scheisse, ohne Zweifel.

Mark Twain learned German (Fraktur even!) and lived to warn his readers: The Awful German Language. Fraktur inventors even thought of making the letter ‘f’ nearly indistinguishable from the letter ‘s’. So that you have to recognize the damned words containing ‘f’ and ‘s’ before you can understand what you are reading? Yes.

Consider the first line that the crow below is about to peck. “This is the Leipzig Fraktur font”:

fraktur-font-copy

I didn’t begin learning German until becoming an adult, when I needed it to study in West Germany in 1971. Sheer good fortune found me rooming with the only German student in the building who did not speak English…

Okay, enough of that, enough of that. What’s this lesson plan you wish to share?

Before the Vikings invaded Britain, English was still inflected the Saxon (Sachsen) way. The German “chs” became the simplified “x”. They had a land to plunder, so they took the gordian option — replace all the sixteen shades of inflection for the so-called “strong endings”” from der, die, das, den, dem and des to “the” and replace all the twelve shades of inflection for the so-called weak endings” to “the” as well. Knot cut.

der.die.das.the

German inflections do not flourish in non-German soil well. Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Netherlands — all of them pretty much did away with the meaning-by-inflection technique and applied the Viking way. Similarly, the Romance languages discarded the five declensions of Latin.

The only country that retained German (Nordic Branch) was Iceland. It has maintained all four cases and three genders for a millenium. Icelandic speakers can, with a bit of effort, read the Eddas. By the way, the Icelandic word for Iceland is Island — Iceland is land, is it not?

edda

Now then, how do those inflections work in German language? I’m calling the following lesson plan The Case of the “The” by Erle Stanley Gaertner:

  1. Über den Fluss und durch den Wald,
  2. Zu Großvaters Haus gehen wir;
  3. Die Pferde kennen den Weg, den Schlitten zu tragen
  4. trotz des dreckigen und tiefen Schnees.
  5. gegen den Regen und durch den Wald,
  6. zur Grossmutter und zum Grossvater gehen wir!
  1. Over [object of a preposition of relative position, accusative, masculine] river and through [preposition exclusively accusative, masculine, plural] wood,
  2. To Grandfather’s house we go;
  3. [subject, nominative, neuter, plural] horses know the way [direct object, accusative, masculine, plural] to carry [direct object, accusative, masculine, singular] sleigh
  4. Despite [object of a preposition governed by genitive, masculine, singular]white and drifted snow.
  5. Against [object of a preposition of relative position, accusative, masculine, singular] rain and through[object of a preposition governed by accusative, masculine, singular] wood,
  6. to [preposition and object of a preposition governed by dative, feminine, singular] grandmother and to [preposition and object of a preposition governed by dative, masculine, singular] grandfather we go!

Thanks for reading.

Palestine/Israel/Palestine

The events of May 1948 in Palestine have sparked trillions of conversations that have droned on in parallel for seventy years now. You may find a few thousand meaningful uncommon conversations post Nakba (the Catastrophe). They are exceedingly rare. Most “conversations” parrot propaganda mills (hasbara in Hebrew).  Below are concerns of an individual Israeli citizen. I have not redacted a single word.

Bill hi, I would suggest you come and visit Palestine – you know Palestine was Israel before 1948. If you come I would be only too happy to offer you coffee and you can tell me what you think about Israel and answer any of your questions if I can.

Even though I live here and spent hundreds of hours at lectures my memory unfortunately is not what it used to be as I am now 76. I live in Netanya and would be only too pleased to help you find answers from history lecturers to any questions you may have. My opinion on Israel seems a bit different to yours but I am sure we could have interesting chats.

I must tell you I am fascinated with BDS and how so many people really do have a problem with facts here and there but I always believe you have to visit a country and speak with the locals so as to make up your own mind.

I keep hearing from members that there is a Genocide in Israel and the disputed territories yet their own statistics show this to not be true.

How many members know that an Israeli president was sentenced to jail by an Arab judge. That Arabs account for 20% of the population and that is their representation at Universities and hospitals where they are professors and famous surgeons.

Please don’t mix up Israel and politicians – I would swap Bibi for Trump in a heartbeat. I think we should keep our correspondence private as I really do not want to cause anyone any grief.
Looking forward to your reply
Mike Altman, Netanya Israel

Hello Michael, Thank you so much for the very kind comments, they are gratefully received. In the two years I’ve been writing this blog, yours is the very first remark from an Israeli perspective — a succinct and thoughtful set of arguments as well. I certainly respect your wishes to maintain an off-blog conversation; however, I would also like to share your views with my audience. Please know that I am quite willing to make your comment visible — again, I understand your concern.
Here is one proposal: I am eager to write a post that addresses your points and to respond on each concern you express. An open conversation between viewpoints is sorely lacking, but desperately needed.

Droning on in parallel from differently selected events, statistics and perspectives proceeds without hope of resolution, and indefinitely.

I have been following the “conflict” for many decades now. I was born eight months before the events of 1948, so it is possible for me to relate each event. For example, I was a student in Germany during the Munich Olympics of 1972. So I was 25 years old and so was Israel/Palestine Palestine/Israel.

Perhaps a point-by-point response that does not reveal your name or location might be a worthy compromise between private and open dialog.
It is a pleasure to make your acquaintance, Michael. I look forward to learning from you 🙂

I try and reply to posts immediately but your reply was different to what I somehow expected. I do not at all mind our conversation being viewed online I incorrectly assumed it would be you that would rather have an offline chat.

Since I am blessed/cursed with a very over active imagination I manage to see things from multiple angles and standpoints. When I think of BDS my mind is flooded with so many questions of why does one well funded organization with ardent followers choose a basically one sided view of just one of the many obviously urgent problems on our planet. Reading articles I do understand that people are writing from their viewpoint but like I am colour blind I expect people to try and see what is there but maybe not visible to them. The thing about being colour blind is that the mind can force oneself to see the missing things if you think they should or could be there.

I have a childhood friend that adamantly believes that we should not intervene – like invading Iraq – we are obliged to do nothing and wait for evolution to choose a path for everyone. Maybe Obama also believed in doing nothing and the result was half a million people killed more wounded and displaced causing hardship and misery for millions more. Never mind the other millions migrating to Europe from Africa to find a better and safer life for them and their children.

The reason I mention this is because with all this abject misery surrounding us I would think that such a well-funded and run organization would not be focusing on just one problem amongst all others. I have always been able to analyse what I see and read and imagine the many directions things could take and how effective they could be. In my humble opinion I cannot see why BDS could succeed as it has already “solved” this complex problem without understanding too much about it.

My father would not have won many “father” awards but he was smart and instilled in me to never judge anyone until I have walked in their shoes. As an example, the last time I visited the Western wall myself and everyone else including tourists passed through metal detectors – like we do at airports today – thank goodness. After arms were taken onto the Temple Mount and used to kill two policeman.

The head of the police promised their families who happened to be Druse that they would take steps so it would not happen again. Maybe even to foreign visitors on this holy site. The police themselves decided to install metal detectors at the entrances and this is what caused the current serious problem. People prayed in the streets instead as they would not pass through the machines and dispersed after prayers with very little problems but in some parts of town young people rioted and people were injured and killed.
Please forgive the over long post but there is so much to say.
May you all have a very good week, Mike

Hello Michael, Thank you for your kind comments on my About page. Dialogues on this topic are as desperately needed as they are rare, and misinformation is the coin of the realm. I think it’s a good sign that both of us responded with consideration for the privacy of each. Would you mind if I wrote a new posting that contains your comments without redaction on my part? In other words, a genuine open and civil dialogue.

Shalom,
 
Bill

I have no problem whatsoever – in fact would welcome it.

A very strange time of year here as more than 4 million Israelis leave to spend a greener cooler holiday all over the world. Amazing when there are only 5,600,000 Danes in Denmark.

 Have a good week Bill

Mike

 

You are a kind soul, Michael. Our exchange already contains enough grist for the mill to inspire quite a few conversations. Actually, that observation on climate, travel and Denmark is sufficient for an entire post. 🙂

A superb week to you, Michael.

🙂 an interesting thought – if we can get the mill to spin faster it could take off – imagine that, flying windmills. Something to think about while trying to sleep.

Thanks for reading.