Sunday, September 29, 2013

FC top 10

1. Bayern Munich
2. Barcelona
3. Dortmund
4. Arsenal
5. Juventus
6. Paris St. Germain
7. Atletico Madrid
8. Napoli
9. Cruziero
10. Porto

Friday, September 27, 2013

Something to Understand About Poland

The Poles existence as mostly Catholic Slavs (Along with the Croats anyway, the important thing is that the Poles see themselves as unique) has led them to see themselves less as Eastern Europeans and more as the eastern frontier of the West.  This identity has allowed them (or us, in a kind-of-sor-of not really way) to maintain their national pride, to see themselves as heroic martyrs defending civilization from Asiatic hordes instead of the poor bastards who always lose.  For this reason the Poles maintain far more anger towards Russia than Germany or any other Western state that has tormented them in the past.  There's a healthy dollop of Islamophobia too, since the Ottomans were one bully that the Poles were actually able to consistently win against.

Which brings us to Lech Walesa, whose good work in freeing my Ddistantcousinland from the Soviets remains, but whose intervening taste for xenophobia, homophobia, and theocracy has destroyed any claim to being a  Great Liberator of history in the vein of Lincoln or Havel.  Now the man has apparently grown so enthralled with the idea of his land marking the border of Real White People that he thinks Poland should merge itself into Germany.    

To this I can only reply: Boy, what the fuck is wrong with your motherfucking ass?

Polish Nazis are, of course, an actual thing.  But that's far too Goddamn depressing for me to get into right now.   

Thursday, September 26, 2013

An Aesop of Sorts, Maybe

In my late teens or early twenties maybe, I forget, the late former editor of my hometown paper,  Keith  Blackledge,  wrote an emeritus column describing his trip to Lillehammer Norway for the 1994 Olympics there.  He described how he was shopping for things one Saturday there and was shocked to find that all of the stores closed early on Saturday.  Keith went on to decry how Scandinavian socialism  had destroyed to good entrepreneurial spirit of the Norwegian people.  Mind you that Lillehammer is a town only the same size as my North Platte, about 26,000 people.  I'd guess with some confidence that it's the smallest place to ever host even the smaller Winter Games. And I emphasize now that this is actually what Blackledge actually reported to the people as fact, that small corner shops in a small town closed early on the weekend because socialism.  He had stepped off the plane expecting to see alien leftist decadence all around him,  so he did. 

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

There are Indeed Many Latinos Coming to Nebraska

and they are indeed especially prevalent in the 'Big Bend' region of the Platte between Omaha and Grand Island that so fascinated Stephen King.  Still you'll be glad to know that Latino children, as a rule, still prefer Catholicism over abominable Lovecraftian  blood god worship.  This right here is just fucking weird. 

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Normative gender indoctrination is indeed a big reason why such a thing as school-affiliated dances came to be.  Still the cart of 'allowing' the kids themselves to make whatever they will of their own dances has already done passed.  Deal with it bro.  P.S. , I'd hate to use the scare quotes again, but rightfully there is no such thing as schools 'allowing' students to express their identities. 

Sunday, September 22, 2013

FC top 10

First time I've done this so early in the year.  We'll see how goes.

1. Bayern Munich
2. Barcelona
3. Dortmund
4. Arsenal
5. Napoli
6, Paris St. Germain
7. Atletico Madrid
8.  Manchester City
9.  Juventus
10. Cruzeiro 

Friday, September 20, 2013

Hiroshi Yamuauchi

R.I.P. Mr. Nintendo.



 

Aaron Alexis Didn't Use an AR-15

Some major media outlets had reported that the Navy Yard shooter did use this particular gun.  They were wrong on that, and it seems as if this has some great importance beyond some fact-checkers getting their paychecks docked.   Apparently this mistake delegitimatizes calls for gun control in ways so obvious to Real Americans that they feel no need to make any effort in explaining how.  My best guess is that they take this as yet another sign that the coastal media are a bunch of wimps and therefore have no right to hold either gun culture or the lack of laws regarding it to the slightest hint of scrutiny.  Gun-rights absolutists are within the Real American tribe after all and are endowed with all the privileges that come with that.  It is their prerogative to declare that familiarity with guns is either a basic universal norm in American culture; or a sign of rarefied courage and wisdom exclusive to themselves; or both of these things; depending on what suits their needs for the moment. 

To this I can only say that I'm a western boy myself; bastard son of a farmer and truck stop waitress and step-son of a truck driver.  I fired guns with some regularity in my childhood and I dare say that I do share that special knowledge of what they really and what they are really about.  What they really are is dead machines; no more intrinsically evil than intrinsically good for that I suppose, and what they are really about is nothing.  A firearm carries no magic powers of manly heroism or invulnerability from threat.  And it is superstition beneath contempt to believe that private gun ownership is the only true guarantor against potential tyranny.  There is no such thing as that. The only, best and imperfect insurance against tyranny is a mind that rejects dogma and is unimpressed by both the actual authority of politicians and the imaginary authority of husbands and fathers.  Gun nuts who fancy themselves as defenders of a non-existent true American way wouldn't know either freedom or tyranny if it bit them in the ass. 


Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Addendum

My cousins house in Greeley, Co, did in fact get flooded; they got out with car and clothes on back; I'll have to talk to them to learn if they have anything to go back to.  And the south end of my North Platte is indeed threatened by the coming water.     North Platte still treats it's sewage in old-fashioned lagoons near the forks of the Platte by the way, and the mother Platte is naturally where both Lincoln and Omaha get a big chunk of our drinking water from.  We'll see how that goes. 

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Rain Dreary

The Eastern plains of Nebraska are just now coming out of the mundane leftovers of the rain that murdered the Colorado Front range.  Here it was eighteen hours of light mist, about two and a half days of gray.  It made me oversleep work today and overall I've been in a moody and lethargic sort of mood with a weirdly low appetite.  I know it's fucking perverse to mention how what for us is a non event has affected my precious sensibilities but there it you have it.  I know that Greeley, Co has been hit hard and I have cousins who live outside there, slightly more than a football field away from the South Platte river.  I've internet messaged them about their state and have received no reply.  If something truly awful happened I'm sure I would have heard by now.  There are a couple reservoirs between there and my hometown of North Platte so I can be assured that place at least will probably be unaffected.  Me, me , me, me, me right?  Take care now. 

Friday, September 13, 2013

Tree Poem

In Nebraska City
We have the power to pardon murderers
by turning our apples
into Raw meat.
Fuck corn.  

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Hornets

At 17th and Y here a colony of hornets have made a nest out of an abandoned railroad traffic signal.  They were sedate as I passed by and of course I did nothing to change that.  Still there's a very strong nightmare-surreal effect in watching dozens of the God damned things crawl about in their business.  I cower and freeze without shame when a venomous hymenoptera touches me.  I'm not allergic and I don't think my tolerance for pain is worse than average it's just that, the thought of being poisoned by these mecha-looking Other Things makes me cold.
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Voyager 1 is the first human made thing to leave the solar system.  That's fucking awesome.  It's true that we are well into the 21st century now and while progress in space travel may seem to be coming along slowly you must remember that James Kirk's birthday is still a hundred and twenty years from now. 


Wednesday, September 11, 2013

12 Years On

I remember how the Dolchsto├člegende. came immediately on the day.  Naturally spontaneously and without any demagogic prompting, at least at first.  I remember several people staring at the burning rubble and saying something along the lines of "America learned a lesson today".  They didn't specify this it was very clear what they were implying; that the mere fact that we had been and could be attacked was in itself proof of some failure of strength courage or action on our own part.  I remember how when people spoke of hitting the terrorists back they were cheered with equal sincerity, in perfect confidence that to speak of retaliation was in itself a sign of exceptional courage, honest certainty that the very concept of self-defense was the personal property of White rural conservative Americans and that nobody else was strong or good enough to truly understand such a thing.  We, (Not me even then, but I was native to the group and counted as 'us) had been proven right you see.  Right wing ideas regarding not just foreign policy but also social issues and more than that had been proven right.  This was the big I-told-you-so-event.  The one thing which proved that a life and culture fixated upon power control and hierarchy was the only possible alternative to hellish chaos. Here was the one proof that the nation was dependent on not just our choice of leaders or ideal of leadership, but could not survive without Our cultural dominance.

Our nation's behavior in the years after 9/11 does not surprise me in the least then.  Even if the Iraq war hadn't of happened some other violation(s) of Vizzini's first law would have.  The spirit of the time and all number of chauvinistic demons released by our anger demanded it. 

Off-topic as this might seem I have just finished reading "Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell by Susanna Clarke and can't help but feel that it is in some ways appropriate for this anniversary.  The main villain of the book is a fairy, I mean the literal magic sort, not the slur, and at several points in the book the Fairy species is described as "mad", "barely sane", etc.  By our standards they are indeed every synonym for batty there is ; but only as a consequence of being privileged.  The fairies are aristocrats; not metaphors for aristocrats but in manner, speech, lifestyle and attitude the real deal.  The actions of the 'gentleman' villain are in many ways simply exaggerated echoes of how the largely upper-class protagonists disregard women, minorities, foreigners the poor etc. themselves.  And I don't think it's a coincidence that Clark set her novel during the Napoleonic wars, near the beginning of the West's fitful, violent transition from hierarchical to democratic social norms. 

Clarke's point here, at least partially, (and yes 'anyone looking for a moral will be banished' etc...') was that both the sense of entitlement to privilege is insane and the actual fact of living in privilege induces insanity.  Anyone who honestly believes their privilege to be naturally deserved instead of arbitrary is bound to fall into 'stabbed in the back logic'; to make a god of their own strength as the only real determinative force in the world, to grossly overestimate what their own power toughness and ability to fight and punish can possibly accomplish; unable to grasp that every other group of people is an 'us' to themselves with their own self-centering interpretation of the world, so that other peoples action do not result chiefly or even mainly out of fear/respect vs. envy/contempt for 'us'.  Privilege makes you hostile, bestial, unable to notice when the rest of the world has outmaneuvered you or simply passed you by.  Privilege convinces you that your tactics of intimidation from fifty years ago will still work today and always will.  Privilege leads you to make that preemptive strike, start that land war in Asia, to sign that letter of succession convinced the weak Yankees could never defeat you and your fellow landowning Supermen.  Privilege leads you to turn on the firehoses, convinced those Outside Agitators stirring the Negroes up will simply cower away forever once they've seen your superior courage.

Even before 9/11 the political Right of this country were very much inclined to think of  themselves as the strong fathers whose leadership the rest of the nation could not live without.  Modern conservatism is, after all, 'politically correct' in its own way, a replacement for old direct appeals to white supremacy as the go-to claim of ownership over the United States, the go-to claim for entitlement to privilege.  They had their chance, after the crisis at the beginning of this century, to prove their pretentions to being our natural leadership class was objectively true.  They failed.  Famously, miserably, and totally.  Too enamored by the illusion of inventing reality that is an unavoidable comes with a life of privilege. And while there are signs that they recognize this failure deep down it is still clear, with every claim that President Obama is weak towards terrorism, (when the fact is that his tactics here have been depressingly similar to Bush's) with every eighth or ninth dozenth vote to repeal health care reform (Refusing to accept that their failure has been so complete that not even 'big government' is taboo anymore) that they are still clinging to that sense of ultimate vindication they felt on September 11th'; gained through the blood of multicultural urbanites they only grudgingly acknowledge as compatriots. 

Monday, September 9, 2013

Self Appointed Patriotism Police Keep Busy Until the Next War

I've been somewhat following Steven Salaita's neo/retro/timeless thoughts against patriotism and the way it is presented as essentially linked with militarism in this country.   I agree that this is a despicable thing, and the way that some responded to his article even more so.  The labeling of Salaita as a 'faggot' is however predictable still very disgusting, and needless to say those who view patriotism as essentially male and equate national identity with manliness/ability to dominate are far more in love with flags and crying eagles than they are with the soft-fleshed human beings who actually compose the USA.  As for the racism highlighted in his article, well, Salaita is a half Arab half Latin atheist people, so even if you Real American types do get your Muslim genocide I'm afraid that this guy would still be around to annoy you. 

Still Saliata seems to share the right wing assumption that patriotism is invariably tied to military dominance/imperialism even while disagrees with the notion and so rejects the very idea of patriotism out of hand.  I can't get behind that myself. 

"We can spend energy formulating a more inclusive and thoughtful patriotism, but ultimately it wouldn’t be energy well spent. Patriotism can only benefit all citizens if the state and its institutions are inclusive of the entire populace. Until that happens, and it has never happened in any epoch of American history, patriotism will have a stronger relationship with ethnonationalism than with movements for equality"

Not so fast friend.  No nation has ever achieved the ideal of being inclusive of its whole population.  Not to be flip or tu quoque about it, and I honestly hope I have no such unconscious motives, but every society has always condemned certain people to be gypsies tramps and thieves out of some irrational prejudice or another.  One could argue that the United States has been especially bad in this matter vis-vis other wealthy countries or not.  No tu quoque like I said.  But in spite of limits and inequities of the nation-state the fact remains that people are still going to seek out ways to express love of home and a mass identity beyond the self.  Patriotism will exist, there's no helping that, and I'm not sure why Salaita assumes out of hand that patriotism is essentially chauvinistic; that the far-right "ethnonationalists" are precisely the true enforcers of real patriotism they fancy themselves to be.  They aren't.  We are all agreed on fuck those guys, and patriotism has no eternal essence beyond what we make of it.  It is only ever whatever we choose to make of it, and I have a hard time seeing how we can maintain the energy towards an all-inclusive ideal nation without the emotional power of an all-inclusive compatriotism  And yes a proud American identity can most certainly exist without being either overtly or implicitly linked to the conquering power of White Men.  It already does and always has.  Motherfuck John Wayne and all that but I still share a flag with Bessie Smith. 


Friday, September 6, 2013

About Town Today

I saw a woman I've had a sexual experience with wearing a pair of panties for a hat.  This wasn't a dream and I don't mean it as a metaphor, not a contrived one anyway.  This actually happened.  I didn't approach her to talk and probably wouldn't have even without that.  She's married see.  I didn't know that until several days after, that happened.  Husband was in jail apparently, and how she passed the time beyond with me than or now I have no idea.  She does like bourbon. 

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

RIP Tommy Gunn

Dead Monday at an Omaha hospital from a conspiracy that most definitely wasn't AIDS.  Some will never forgive Tommy for rejecting Rocky's fatherly wisdom in favor of the slick talking black man.  But he still smart enough to almost double a boxer's average lifespan. 




Monday, September 2, 2013

In the Late Summer Dawn There is Great Precision

Just something I thought to myself when I woke up briefly to see it this morning.  It was a halfly dreamt thought, obviously, and yet my waking self is at a loss to thing of any meaning for it save the literal one.  In the late summer dawn there is great precision.  I have a teenage memory of Lenny Kravitz having his pubic hair dreadlocked within the cover art for 'Circus' but I can't say now if this memory is accurate or not. 

It is somewhat surprising that such a thing a Labor Day ever made it past the gatekeepers of capitalist purity here in the US.  But I'm glad that it did and I'm happy that it's a separate thing from May Day here.  The old school rite of having young virgins flag up a penis is much more enjoyable than all the Very Serious political agitation one sees elsewhere.