June 2, 2009 archive

Four at Four

  1. Politico reports Pentagon budget faces shortfall The Obama administration “understated the military’s true personnel costs when the president submitted his war funding request in April… “The Pentagon said Monday it now estimates it faces an additional $2.35 billion shortfall in personnel accounts for the remainder of this fiscal year ending Sept. 30. Nearly three-quarters of the money would go to the Army and Army National Guard, which have blown far past their 2009 manpower targets, thanks to a bad economy and a system of often costly enlistment bonuses.”

Four at Four continues with Obama in Egypt, how we’re losing the war in Afghanistan, and Pakistan frees cleric allegedly linked to Mumbai terrorist attacks.

WeaveMothers: What Shenshi Did

The WeaveMothers wove some new happentracks into the Ifalong, for this is what the Weavemothers were meant to do.  And the Greataway sparkled a bit for a moment.  Part of the Tapestry now connected more closely with momentous events and everyone paused for just an instant to reflect.

In the Locomotive the Engineer released some steam through the trumpet and smiled.

_ # ^ &  _ # ^ &  _ # ^ &  _

There is a tale that the Storyteller has told often.  It is always a favorite, even by those who have heard it many times.  For the Storyteller always embellishes it somewhat differently.  The truth, they say, is never changed, but it comes in various hues.

The tale relates some of what happened before the Triad was formed.  It is, in fact, the fable of the efforts of Shenshi to cause its formation.  These events took place near Dome Azul at a time long after the color of that dome had faded, and the nearby coastal village of Punto del Oeste.

I can only relate the story in the way I heard it and as I remember it.  One could probably consult the Rainbow for an exact version.  But where would be the fun in that?

Building a Post White Christian Male Power Stucture

In a recent essay …Breaking The Taboo: What We Face On Every Front I published this very telling quote:

BILL O’REILLY: But do you understand what the New York Times wants, and the far-left want? They want to break down the white, Christian, male power structure, which you’re a part, and so am I….

The context and attributions can be found here: Preserving the ‘white, Christian, male power structure.’

This essay too is taboo, this essay speaks an awkward, uncomfortable truth. This essay is controversial. This essay speaks plainly of something that is not easily spoken about. This essay will contain more caveats than I have ever written! (except for the last one!)

Los Caveats: Please read before proceeding.

For I place this essay before you today not to condemn a subset of humanity, not to say that they are evil, not to call for their heads, and certainly not to condemn every person reading it who shares any of the characteristics of the subset in question. I share them myself.

If you are reading this and yet do share some of those characteristics…you have probably been fighting your whole life to defeat…..”it.” Yet, it will probably still sting. You may feel a sense of shame, but I say to you now, with all of the honesty I can muster after examining my heart and conscience, I do not write this to shame you.

You may what I am about to write and you are about to read… ‘insensitive.’ You may even find it insulting. You may become angry. The words on this page may make you feel…..a certain way. Which is why they are taboo. But they are, to the best of my ability to perceive it, The Truth. And though I take full responsibility for writing them, I do not take responsibility for how they make you feel. I did not make this Truth. I just have the temerity to set it in print.

As the subset I am writing about often are heard to say….I apologize if what I say offends you in any way.

If you have read and understand these caveats, you may proceed below the fold.

The End Of The Beginning?

Note: I repost this every now and then – it was my first essay here at DD nearly two years ago and was originally posted at Talkleft in 2006. With so many new people here lately I thought it’s time to post it again, this time with some new additions at the end of it…

In the nineteen sixties and seventies the western world was in the throes of a cultural and psychological revolution of awareness that at times threatened to bring down the governments and destroy the societies of some of the most powerful countries on earth, and terrified many who were unable to step outside of the structure and limitations of the worldviews they had constructed for themselves in the course of their lives.

Questioning cultural norms and prejudices and searching for alternatives that better respected and valued human beings and their relationship with the larger society and with the natural world as the basis and reason for societies actions and existence rather than society and the state and the status quo as the determining factors of how people should interact with each other, were the drivers behind this revolution.

The insecurity of many in the face of insistent and deep questioning that in a religious context would have been labeled blasphemy and heresy caused knee-jerk fear reactions that in many arenas turned into violent confrontations, particularly but not only race riots and countless smaller horrors of the racial Civil Rights Movement, and in the struggle for equality under law and social systems of  more than half the population in the Gay and the Women's Liberation Movements, and what was often termed a Sexual Revolution, all of which had been percolating and growing for many years and all of which naturally contributed to making up the more encompassing psychological or awareness heightening Cultural Revolution of the times.

Noted philosopher Alan Watts in the nineteen sixties in “The Book: On the Taboo Against Knowing Who You Are” described our situation, our human condition, this way:

Republicans Won’t Be Back Prior To 2014

There has been a lot of talk about the demise of the Republican Party. The Dog has, himself, been part of this talk. Whenever this topic comes up there are those that point out the various times where the Republican Party or even the Democratic Party were down and looked as though they might be out, then have come back in with surprising swiftness. These arguments are true as far as they go but one of the major failings the Dog always finds with these comparisons is they only look at the results and fail to take into account the circumstances which allowed these changes of fortunes for the Party.

Originally posted at Squarestate.net

Things are falling apart

The nauseating sensation of being in a surreal, waking dream is becoming the daily reality of the Obama Administration. Unlike the crude affront to sanity that was the Bush nightmare, the dominant feeling of the Obama era is the insidious feeling that things are not right, but that everyone is pretending that they are.

Consider the GM bankruptcy. This historic event has been ignored by the stock market, which actually staged a rally. The arithmetic of massive auto industry job losses and wiped out government investments is obvious, but nobody wants to run the numbers. Instead, all we hear from the press is numbing, repetitive assurances that everything is going to be fine. Obama sends in a handful of inexperienced functionaries to apply crude measures to hold the remnants of GM together for another year or two, and we are supposed to believe that we are going to get an automotive technology renaissance.

This is government by bull$hit, not a new era of competence. When FDR took things in hand, he gave the people straight talk and new structures staffed by competent people. Obama is blowing smoke and dodging accountability. We have seen this pattern in the financial “rescue,” as Geither and Summers ducked, weaved, and dodged around every issue. Now we are seeing it in industrial policy.

If the Bush administration did not give us an adequate lesson in the pernicious consequences of wishful thinking and ideological fantasies, we will certainly learn this lesson under Obama. Liberal fantasies are no less pernicious than those of conservatives. Reality will not be denied for much longer.

Obama Changed Mind on Photos After Maliki Said Baghdad Will Burn

McClathchy Newspapers is reporting that the real reason that President Obama changed his mind on releasing the torture photos is that Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al Maliki told him that Iraq would erupt in violence and demand the US get out:

WASHINGTON – President Barack Obama reversed his decision to release detainee abuse photos from Iraq and Afghanistan after Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al Maliki warned that Iraq would erupt into violence and that Iraqis would demand that U.S. troops withdraw from Iraq a year earlier than planned, two U.S. military officers, a senior defense official and a State Department official have told McClatchy.

Why’d Obama switch on detainee photos? Maliki went ballistic

The official said Maliki warned that releasing the photos would lead to more violence that could delay the scheduled U.S. withdrawal from cities by June 30 and that Iraqis wouldn’t make a distinction between old and new photos. The public outrage and increase in violence could lead Iraqis to demand a referendum on the security agreement and refuse to permit U.S. forces to stay until the end of 2011.

Maliki said, “Baghdad will burn” if the photos are released, said a second U.S. military official.

Why’d Obama switch on detainee photos? Maliki went ballistic

More at the link, including a desription of some of the pictures.

So we hide the truth.

In my view, it’s long past time to withdraw from Iraq.  In addition, there should be justice for the crimes Americans committed, including justice at the highest levels for ordering torture.  To be a nation committed to the rule of law means applying laws against torture to even high officials who break the law.  When we fail to apply the law against a high official because of his or her rank, we no longer can say we follow the rule of law.

That means investigate Bush and Cheney for All of their violations of law.

Simulposted on Daily Kos: http://www.dailykos.com/story/…

If you build it….

The real field in Dyersville is actually borne of division, two feuding families each owning half the ballfield property… that is really not what I expected when searching for this image, but why I am I not surprised it fits this introduction anyway?

Heaven may have many mansions, but America has many bars… some of which I’d enter willingly, others I’d tolerate yet never be truly comfortable in, and some that feel like home. Its ok that like minded gravitate toward each other, and I for one, think that new ways of thinking are offered all the time between kindreds. I don’t buy into the preaching to the choir thing much. I think friends should inspire eachother, and that unseen ripples change the universe. The point is being flexible enough to roll with the waves and be able to be altered in a million tiny ways.

Right now many of us have political burn out. Some, quite rightly, are feeling the “I told you so’s” while witnessing so many others express disillusionment with this new administrations lack of progress. Many are feeling like change can never happen, even if a moral man went up against the corporate power. Some are feeling outright betrayed, while others still think we haven’t “given the man a chance.” I venture that almost all are kind of collectively holding our breath wondering how we will personally survive the coming economic collapses.

So what now? Apathy for any reason is never productive.

Is an organized and disciplined left possible, desirable or an oxymoron?

The very position of the left, that government and society should not be rigid, dogmatic, or….forced…on any level, individual or group, large or small….argues in and of itself against an organized and disciplined left.

Just as an individual who does the everything perfectly…. is in fact imperfect becuase the act and predictability inherent in doing everything exactly perfectly eliminates the opportunity for growth or spontaneity…or even error! ….is in itself inherently IMPERFECT….

because that means that you are no longer human.

By becoming the perfect human, you eliminate your humanity.

By becoming disciplined and overly organized, the Left becomes the Right.

In order for the Left to exist, it must embrace Chaos. While the Right MUST reject the chaos inherent in being “perfectly human”…….which is an oxymoron. Because the perfect human…..is by definition, Imperfect.

Docudharma Times Tuesday June 2

Perhaps The Right

Should Take A Hard

Look At Its Self

When It Comes To

Promoting Hate, Fear And Violence  

Tuesday’s Headlines:

A match made in the old ways

The great Tiananmen taboo

The Big Question: Do Pakistan’s gains in the Swat valley mean it is overcoming the Taliban?

Spreading scandal at Europe’s expense

Why truth is a casualty of war in the battle of ‘Obama Beach’

President Ahmadinejad to face election rivals in live TV debates

Israeli proposal: Make Jordan the official Palestinian homeland

Somalia crisis ‘Africa’s worst’

El Salvador installs its first leftist president, TV host Mauricio Funes

Confidence in U.S. Economy Builds Even as Recovery Still Seems Distant

By Neil Irwin

Washington Post Staff Writer

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Economists, senior government officials and ordinary consumers are all showing greater confidence in the outlook for the economy.

But three months after signs of hope emerged, the evidence of improvement still exists only in the form of glimmers. A slew of recent economic data and other news, including yesterday’s bankruptcy filing by General Motors, make clear that the nation is still muddling through a deep recession.

“A few months ago, the U.S. was in the throes of the most severe recession since the 1930s,” said Paul Ashworth, a senior economist at Capital Economics. “We’ve had some improvement, but . . . we’re still nowhere near a meaningful recovery or even a slight recovery.”

Kim Jong Il formally names youngest son as successor

From Times Online

June 2, 2009

Richard Lloyd Parry, Yeonpyeong Island

Kim Jong Un, the 25-year old youngest son of the North Korean dictator, Kim Jong Il, has been formally declared as his successor, the South Korean media reported yesterday, in the latest sign of dramatic change in the isolated totalitarian state.

North Korea’s Worker’s Party, the country’s token parliament and cabinet were notified of the succession soon after the country’s second nuclear test, according to sources quoted by the Yonhap news agency and two Seoul newspapers. There were conflicting reports over whether foreign embassies had also been notified.

The news seems to confirm what has become increasingly clear for the past few months – that, after a serious illness last summer, 67-year old Kim Jong Il is preparing for his family’s continued rule of North Korea’s 25 million people, after he is gone.


Now a G.M. Owner, U.A.W. Faces Delicate Balancing Act


Published: June 1, 2009

For decades, the United Automobile Workers had a simple strategy for getting what it wanted from the carmakers – it would go on strike. The tactic proved so successful that the mere threat of a walkout often won better wages, benefits and job security.

Now, with General Motors and Chrysler in bankruptcy and the union a major shareholder in both through its retiree health fund, life has become a lot more complicated for the U.A.W.

The union, which was born of labor strife, has pledged not to go on strike against the two companies before 2015, as part of the rescue plan hammered out by the Obama administration. Whether this brokered peace helps end the antagonistic relationship between union and management could determine the future not only of G.M. and Chrysler, but also of the U.A.W. itself.

Muse in the Morning

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Muse in the Morning

One should not strike a brahmin,

nor should the brahmin

let loose with his anger.

Shame on the brahmin’s killer.

More shame on the brahmin

whose anger is let loose.

–The Dhammapada, 389

Phenomena XII: interacting

True Colors?

Reality Bumping

Unlike glass baubles

the edges

of our worlds


For a brief moment

we share

realities blending


exchanging electrons

of information

changing each of us

Then we pass

our realities untangle

but we each

carry onward

a piece of the other

–Robyn Elaine Serven

–May 2, 2008

Clear rules, equally enforced.

I’m going to provide another space for this, but mostly in the hope that people who feel the need to vent do it here and not bother those who are looking for a different experience.

It is ok to talk about dKos here, we don’t allow kos bashing.

dKos talks about dKos all the time.  It’s an enormously self referential place.  If it’s ok to talk about it there it’s ok to talk about it here (with the exception of I/P).

That said, most people come here because we offer original and offbeat content in a respectful and laid back atmosphere.  Harshing the mellow doesn’t help you.

Even more than dKos we seek to make it difficult for you to harm each other while still allowing you to express negative opinions.

Because we’re Dirty Fucking Hippies.

If someone gives you a Wrong! it’s not only allowed but likely a mistake.  Ignore it.  If you are easily offended you need a gentler hobby than blogging anyway.

Most of the problems that lead people to think they’re being singled out here are software glitches that when identified we are seeking to work out with pacified who has a much closer relationship with On The Bus than with me.

I personally am not much concerned about what you post in your individual essays unless I’m considering you for promotion and even less so with comments, but if you are looking to enlighten and persuade being confrontational is unlikely to achieve your goals.

But we don’t enforce politeness either.

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