The muses are ancient. The inspirations for our stories were said to be born from them. Muses of song and dance, or poetry and prose, of comedy and tragedy, of the inward and the outward. In one version they are Calliope, Euterpe and Terpsichore, Erato and Clio, Thalia and Melpomene, Polyhymnia and Urania.
It has also been traditional to name a tenth muse. Plato declared Sappho to be the tenth muse, the muse of women poets. Others have been suggested throughout the centuries. I don’t have a name for one, but I do think there should be a muse for the graphical arts. And maybe there should be many more.
Please join us inside to celebrate our various muses…
Ok. OPOL inspired me to give it a try so I gathered some of my personal photos from years of covering peace protests along with some music I recorded on a bus trip to a DC protest and made a video of it. I had planned to make my debut on the Garden Blog on big orange with something about plants, but it’s happening here first.
I think some of the images rotate too quickly, and, for mine, there is no motion. If I had to do it over again, I would add a zoom to the woman in the orange jump suit [DONE] because her sign is hard to read on Youtube — the resolution is poor.
Warning: There is some nudity and profanity in my video.
I’m not just talking about the normal routine recording of your every gesture and utterance outside carefully constructed and deliberate walls of polite procedure rooted in a more gentile and tolerant time, one where gentlemen didn’t read each other’s mail except when they could.
I mean here out on the cold windy street corner of blogdom, doing your soon to be extinct polar bear club defiance of diminishing icecaps, lime stuffed Corona in hand.
One hardly knows where honesty ends and self interest begins unless they are one and the same because of the bigger picture.
Grab your gaze out of the gutter and look up to the stardust from whence you came and believe in yourself again.
You can change things. You know it’s true. Stop smoking. Get fit. Care more for those around you and let them know it.
Blog more. Sing louder. We are not proud, or tired. And we’ll show you the next time it comes around on the guitar.
Of course the four part harmony and circles and arrows on the back of each one explaining how they are to be used in evidence against me is up to you.
Me? I’m just happy to be sitting here on the Group W bench disturbing the peace with the father rapers and mother stabbers.
The kids in my classroom don’t remember the Cold War, most of them having been born after the fall of the Berlin Wall. The only enemy they’ve ever known are a few tens of thousands of religious fanatics; they don’t remember the days when entire nation-states aimed nuclear missiles at one another in pursuit of foreign policy goals that extended past the 24-hour news cycle. This makes it hard to explain that the threat posed by the Soviet bloc was the type that could cause a country to do some pretty extreme things to “protect” itself – not that it rose to the sort of “terrorists made me do it” waterboarding that we see today, but back in the heady days of the Iron Curtain, for example, the thought of surgically implanting a live cat with eavesdropping equipment wasn’t considered outside the realm of ethical behavior.
Join me, if you will, in the Cave of the Moonbat, where tonight we’ll take a short romp through the CIA’s litter box of secrets. Among the “presents” we’ll unearth: a Frankensteinish feline, paranoia-induced stupidity not equaled until recent times, and $20 million turd of an idea.
Early on, I chastised Maryscott for speaking to “who was electable” and her premature outright dismissal of all but the top three candidates. I thought it fair to see where the coming months would lead. Time has proven her right.
Whether or not the Murdoch-Media-Monolithic-Magnate has been successful in the preordaining our candidates by sheer barrage and unfair coverage; the time for Primaries is at hand.
I want to talk about the Objective of a Primary, and why I think Docudharmans should join me in supporting John Edwards.
Yesterday I wrote about the need for systematic change in this country and why Barack Obama had the best plan and record to accomplish that of any of the candidates running. In that diary I talked about his support for public financing of elections and the bills he had introduced to make that a reality with progressive champion Russ Feingold. Since I wrote that I have found out he introduced a bill to publicly finance elections in the Illinois State Senate too. Hard to still make the claim that he is only doing this to win votes.
There is a old saying in the media reform movement “if media is not your number one issue, it has to be your second issue.” In this post I am going to focus on my second issue, media reform.
2007 started with such promise – there would be “big changes” – or so we were told. And on some levels (mainly personal), it has delivered – I still have my job (and it is better than at the beginning of the year), YKos was great, I have a baby on the way….but in the world of politics and around the world, things don’t look as rosy as we may have thought back when a new Congress took session. Some of this is the fault of Democratic leadership, a lot of this is the fault of Bush and the republican party, or the corporate media, or the fault of nobody. But, a lot did go on this past year, and all I can say is that I hope 2008 holds out more in terms of delivery and less in terms of broken promises, frustration, disappointment, bewilderment and lowered expectations.
The 3,000th US military death in Iraq was just before the new year. There were promises of a “new Congress in town” and a change of direction in Iraq. Another close to $200 billion was approved during the year for “continuing operations” with absolutely no real change in direction. The “surge” has been an absolute failure – a reduction in deaths due to sectarian cleansing and voluntary temporary stop in violence by al Sadr’s militia with no political benchmarks met is no success in any way.
A new record was set in the Senate by republicans on filibustering. Except that it suddenly wasn’t called a “filibuster” anymore. It was now the conventional wisdom that you “need 60 votes for anything” and votes can fail with 58 votes in favor. Amid the record obstruction, there were cries for bipartisanship and to let bygones be bygones. Of course, that meant letting a new Attorney General through even though he wouldn’t comment on torture being torture.
Too many New Year’s Eves will come and go before humanity drinks from that Cup of Kindness Robert Burns spoke of in his classic poem, “Auld Lang Syne”. Tragically, that moment may never come to pass, but if it does someday, it will be because people in this troubled world finally listened to poets, writers, singers and songwriters, and heeded the words of truth and wisdom they’ve been offering ever since the first warrior of the first king died for nothing on the first battlefield.
In Artists of Resistance, Howard Zinn emphasizes the social and political importance of modern poets and painters, singers, songwriters, novelists and playwrights, for they can speak to the world with an artistic eloquence that transcends standard political discourse. Their ability to communicate universal truths on a deeply personal level through compelling poetry, prose and music is not only inspiring, it insulates them against reactionary assault as they defend the oppressed and condemn their oppressors.
As our world descends into chaos, artists are struggling to reclaim the influence they once had on society, but their voices can rarely be heard above the din of distracting noise blaring day and night from several billion tv’s, radios, CD players, iPods, computer games, cell phones, and other electronic wonders purchased with such compulsion and “paid for” with plastic. Artists will always strive to be the conscience of the human race, but hundreds of millions of human beings corporate propaganda targets have been psychologically conditioned with such pervasive intensity by Madison Avenue marketers that reactionary economic and political elites from Washington to Beijing no longer have to oppress them, they’re oppressing themselves.
Eddie Vedder has some thoughts to share with us regarding this dehumanizing self-oppression that’s been spreading like a viral infection through the bloodstream of humanity . . .
Washington – To understand the importance Dennis Kucinich places on spirituality, scan his generally spare Capitol Hill office: a white cloth from the Dalai Lama, a bust of Gandhi, and a picture representing “conscious light” – a gift from Brahma Kumaris nuns.
There’s a Tibetan dragon washbowl and, on his desk, two heavy crucifixes once worn by Catholic nuns who taught him and who, he says, “saved my life.”