July 16, 2008 archive

Feith in the House!

Wow, so guess who actually honored his subpoena! None other than one of the stupidest people on the planet, Douglas Feith! Unlike Mixmaster Rove, who knows better than to face the beat of justice, Feith’s ego has always been his downfall. Which is funny, because the dude couldn’t find his ass with a flashlight in both hands. Not really much to be proud of, but renown, at least on the other side of the pound, Phillipe Sands was one hand as well!

See Sands talked mad clown shit about Feith in his Vanity Fair article. Torture this, torture that, and got Feith to say all kinds of crazy shit on tape. On tape! Stupid neocons, they learned nothing from Nixon.

Anyhoo, Feith is such dumb sack of rocks he actually boasted to Sands, on tape remember, that he was a key player in the Guantanamo interrogation policy. Recently! The whole world is whisper about how the once proud American democracy has gone whole turkey on torture. Mulling over how to hold American officials liable for war crimes, and where to find the evidence.

And here’s Feith, showing everyone that his porch light is on and no one is home. Make pop corn! The dumb son of bitch showed!

Court Rules: Bush can detain ANYONE indefinetely

President Bush has the legal power to order the indefinite military detentions of civilians captured in the United States, the federal appeals court in Richmond, Va., ruled on Tuesday in a fractured 5-to-4 decision.

Link to New York Times story HERE.

Pony Party: Midnight

Midnight Rider

by Iron Spring Farm

by Iron Spring Farm

Dreaming the Future . . .or . . . My Life in Dreams

I’ve written here before about some of my dreams.  Here in which I was shown the Manhattan skyline in 1997 and  told that This Will Not Last.  And here in which I was given a glimpse of an American response to the Chinese – I hesitate to say threat, but maybe growth – huge growth – will do.

I apologize if this sounds crazy or if this offends.  These dreams may sound prophetic, and I may sound presumptuous to think them so.  Who am I to receive messages?  But some of the dreams I’ve had have spoken to me, down to the core, and have changed not just how I look at my life and my future, but how I live my life.  And how I see the future for all of us.  Me, you, the Chinese, the Mayans, my grandchildren, my dogs.  We’re all connected you know.

So here goes . . .  I’m going to relate only the dreams that have had a major impact on me. I’ll do this chronologically, and then (if I get to it) go back to talk about what I think the dreams mean.

When I was eighteen, I dreamed that the stars moved around in the sky very fast, a clear blue sky, and spelled out the words “NOW, Be in Rome”.  That woke me up and I had no idea what it meant.  At first, in my Southern Baptist turned Calvinist Presbyterian upbringing, I listened to see if my college roommate was still there, breathing in her bed across the room – or if other souls were ascending to heaven.  I had no idea what this dream meant for years, still am not sure.  But several years later, in talking about this dream with a close friend, he reminded me that I was a lawyer, that the seat of our legal system was Rome, and maybe the dream was telling me that that was where I needed to be in that point in my life.

I did not have another “speaking to me” dream again for nearly 30 years.  Then, in 1994, four years after my mother died, (killed horribly in a car accident – my father was driving –  when she was just 72), I had a long involved dream in which I was in a house with lot’s of folks, sort of camping out.  A friend came in saying “Did you see them?”  I go out and see arrows (spaceships?) headed to the earth.  In spite of this impending threat, there was a feeling of, even giddy, anticipation by some of the folks in the house (including my friend the Mad Kossack, sitting on a couch in a bright yellow shirt, with two other musicians).  In going around talking to others in the house I stopped by three people who had a little board with a spinner, (like a Richard Simmons diet wheel?)  saying “We’ve got to get back to the diet three cycles ago.”

Then the phone rang and my mother’s voice was there (in the dream), very strong, saying my name and “You know that I am here don’t you.”  It was the first time my mother had appeared in  my dreams since she had died.  But her voice was unmistakable and shocked me so much I almost woke up.  But the next thing I knew, in my dream, was that I was in my bed back in the room I grew up in, then the covers pulled me very fast under the bed and there I heard my father’s voice, in a very small feeble voice, calling my name, over and over, as if asking for help.  Just a few months later he had a series of heart attacks, and then a massive stroke.  I spent the next year of my life taking care of him, helping him to learn to walk and talk all over again, and then going with him into his death.

I write about that year with my father some in This Will Not Last, which is the next dream (it was really a vision in a meditation) chronologically.  For a year or so after this dream/vision, in my hour long Quaker meditations, I would receive messages (from my spiritual guides) about the future. “Save the Seed.” “Buy a Boat.” were the first two.  I had about 12 or 13 messages in all. I wrote them down in a little yellow notebook that I have somehow misplaced, but am confident that I can find.

Then the Chinese blurb.

Then, about six months ago, I had probably the strangest dream of all.  I dreamed I was in a graveyard at night.  Deep dark night, midnight.  I had the feeling that it was a graveyard in Central America, probably Guatemala (I’ve been to Guatemala.  We’ve got a good friend who leads a tour to Guatemala, which he calls the “Day of the Dead” tour, not the tour I’ve been on though.)

In my dream I, along with other people, am kneeling in front of a small headstone.  We’re all kneeling in front of small headstones.  Off to the left, behind me, in the periphery of my vision, is my son.  In front of me just beyond the headstone and a little to the right is a friend with flowing white hair.  She is telling me “You’re not kneeling down low enough.  You need to go all the way down.  You need to touch your head to the ground.”  This, with me on my knees bowing.  When my head did finally touch the ground, I had the immediate sensation that my head was suddenly wrapped tightly like a turban.  A small Mayan woman had attached herself to my head. And I could not get her loose.  I was upset because, as I said in the dream, I have to take my son for a job interview the next morning.

Next, I was in a bed sleeping, with the Mayan woman still attached to my head.  My son was in the corner of the room.  When I woke up, my son stood up and he was a beautiful young woman, in her early thirties and he/she said on leaving the room, “I can go to the job interview on my own.”

And then the Mayan woman unattached herself from my head and I got up.

So what does all this tell me . . about me . . about the future?

Some is pretty self-explanatory.  (This Will Not Last or the Chinese and the couch potatoes).  The Be in Rome dream I’ve explained and, at least for now, am satisfied with thinking it was a message related to my legal career, as I’ve had the privilege as a lawyer to do a lot of good stuff (class actions establishing rights to certain benefits under federal Medicaid statute, due process rights for welfare recipients, rights to equal protection for domestic violence victims, saving a wetlands).

Throughout my career I’ve felt the tug of the law and at other times the tug away from it.  I talk about this some in This Will Not Last.   I’ve spent the last seven years or so learning and doing environmental protection law.  I  think the message from the Mayan woman is that now I need to get back to the Earth.  And I think this is a message for all of us.  We need to go back to simpler ways of living, a simpler diet (3 cycles ago?), appreciation of the Earth, and not this civilized construct we’ve imposed upon it.  (Live more like the Mayans?).   Understand that we are all of one, a part of nature, not separate from it.  And I suspect there may be something more of the female than the male in this future.


I find it is getting harder and harder to connect with people on blogs and the internet in general.  For poetry it is a good quick way to get feedback on your words, but it still lacks the subtleties of glances, posture, scent…etc.  And I’m finding I need these things more and more right now as those are the things that stay with me…not words.

Part of it is my own inability to explain myself clearly which leads to misunderstandings and regrets.  Another part of it is time, for instance today I cleaned out the barn, had the well drilled and installed a new fence line so by the time I got on here I was pretty much toast.  

But when I find people with holier than thou attitudes comparing Obama to Bush on the front page I have to start wondering…

Why we do it: Protesters get hearing with Conyers

“People say, ‘Why do you keep doing it?  Why do you want to stand outside of some fundraiser with a sign?  What’s the point?'” a Milwaukee activist said at a recent meeting at Peace Action-Wisconsin.

There are a lot of reasons.  Some are personal. Some do it to take a stand, bear witness, confront a politician.

And every now and then something happens to make you think that it might actually be having an impact and making a difference.

When members of the Milwaukee Impeachment Commikttee and others picketed a recent political fundraiser for a Wisconsin Congressman, Steve Kagen, featuring the House Judiciary chair, John Conyers, as a special guest, they didn’t have any expectations.

But Conyers’s committee is the committee that must consider articles of impeachment against George Bush and/or Dick Cheney if anything is to come of them.

So the group stood outside the fundraiser.  And Conyers not only spoke with them for a minute, but invited them to spend an hour with him the next morning at the Pfister Hotel, where he spent the night.

Who Owns Obama?

Original article by Pham Binh via dissidentvoice.org.

Spiraling War Culture and Human Empathy–Part II

In Part I, I wrote about the Parable of the Tribes, which explains the historical spiral of human civilization towards increasingly war-like cultures and ever more lethal war technology.  We discussed how the self-destructive behavior of humans in society can look demonic.  In this part I want to discuss a spiritual technology for defusing belligerent behavior–empathy.

I notice that as the Constitution of the United States is increasingly perverted, mangled, and subverted, people are not saying the Constitution is responsible for lawlessness.  Nor do they clamor for dumping the whole thing.  To the contrary, we call for a re-enshrinement of the Constitution in its place of honor.  Many of us don’t have such clear-sightedness with respect to religion.  Seeing the brilliant insights of early sages mangled, manipulated, and co-opted has caused many to reject the basic ideas of religion along with the humans who perverted them.  Herein we refresh our acquaintance with an idea fundamental to every major religion–the Golden Rule–in the hopes that it provides a way out of our spiral toward extinction.

Profiles in Literature: Satire

I hesitated on posting this because of Temmoku’s sage advice to avoid the discussion about the New Yorker topic.  But given that literature is my gig, I thought this could lead to some interesting discussions nonetheless.  My apologies.

Greetings, literature-loving DDers!  This long defunct series is soon to be revived full time, but the current kerfuffle over the New Yorker cover is practically begging for a discussion about the nature of satire, its history, form, and intents.  

In the past few days, a lot of text has been spilled over what is and isn’t necessary for satire to work.  I want to make one thing clear from the outset: I’m not here to discuss whether the New Yorker cover was offensive or not.  I am here to clear up some misconceptions about what satire is, what it “should” be, and how it works.  I’ll be addressing specific criticisms at the end of diary – but first let’s have a primer on satire itself:

Change You Can Believe In… or Honestly, Would I Lie To You?

In efforts to strengthen his somewhat faltering presidential bid after last weeks shuffle to the center to the right in his reversal of a long held campaign promise with his support for preemptively pardoning retroactively legalizing years of Bush criminal behavior and expanded domestic surveillance at the low, low price of gutting your fourth amendment rights, Barack Obama has made more major position “adjustments” with changes to his campaign website today.

The AP reports about an hour ago: Obama Web site removes ‘surge’ from Iraq problem

Barack Obama’s aides have removed criticism of President Bush’s increase of troops to Iraq from the campaign Web site, part of an effort to update the Democrat’s written war plan to reflect changing conditions.

McCain said Obama is failing to acknowledge success. “Today, we know Sen. Obama was wrong” to oppose the surge, McCain said.

As first reported Tuesday by the New York Daily News, Obama’s campaign removed a reference to the surge as part of “The Problem” section on the part of his Web site devoted to laying out his plan for Iraq.

The change was part of many broader changes that Obama spokeswoman Wendy Morigi said were made to reflect current conditions.

Designed to appeal to the center right likely in hopes of drawing voters away from the McCain camp, which he’ll need to replace progressive support lost over FISA, Obama takes more steps towards offering another “Bush Third Term” coke or pepsi choice between himself and McCain to voters this year.

The AP article continues…

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