Home | About | Donate

Ocasio-Cortez Hits Back at Liz Cheney: 'What Do You Call Building Mass Camps of People Being Detained Without Trial?'

Sounds like an interesting day. Here it was a triumph of organization over age related capacity, my favorite lunch, and only lost one thing I couldn’t find until much later.

Excellent idea.

“. . .triumph of organization over age related capacity. . . .”

I love it! Ain’t it great when it works? I was able to stay on schedule, more through stubborn persistence than by organization. I can do organization well, but once one gets behind it takes a lot of time to re-establish a base line. It seems like for the past 25 years, since I jumped off the deep end trying to figure out why economics looked so bogus for a highly regarded academic discipline (short conclusion: because it IS bogus), like Alice I’ve been running faster and faster just to stay in one place. But that’s just Life In the 21st Century, in which everyone is caught up.

This project ends Sunday, maybe even Saturday, and should be completely finished except for a related item that should take no more than two days which can even be be rainy. After that I’m going on strike for at least two solid weeks. It will probably give my wife the vapors, but tough beans. I was on strike from 1969 until I dropped back in 25 years later, and I can do it again. Maybe I’ll stay out for 25 days for old times sake. Maybe I can even make time to pick up where last year’s organization effort left off.

Indeed, it is great when it works. Stubborn persistence has value too and I would say here is a person that is well organized. I have to work at it. I think most things over time are not what they first appeared to be. Another good thing about ageing, reflection. It is great being able to see things as they are, that is a gift. So far, I’m not very comfortable with the 21st century, it is like everyone is shedding old concepts and everything has to be a crisis. I don’t like crisis programing for various reasons, maybe its the winter buffalo thinking.

Hummm, I’m sure your wife will be fine if you explain it is all part of a task well done. Disclaimer, I should never give marital advise. I’m sure your family will appreciate your efforts. So what did you do through the missing years. Care to s

Beat the rain last night (no rain on paint applied late); have to race it again this morning. But likely rain this afternoon should provide some slack. Thank you for the wise words.

I think you like doing this with the rain, I’m glad you prevailed… Up early, the news is pretty creepy today talk about things not being as they seem, evidently politically we haven’t hit bottom yet.

Your welcome. I learn a lot from you as well.

Hmm, I think I missed most of the news today. What new “not what they seem”? Two famous quotes, one from Longfellow’s Hymn to the Night (I would have sworn it was Wordsworth–so much for my literary cred, not that I have ever claimed any), the other from Sir William Schwenk Gilbert (and Sullivan), from H.M.S. Pinafore.

I’m increasingly hoping I don’t live to see the bottom. Another old saw: “The bigger they are, the harder they fall.” The USian Empire is the most formidable that H. Sapiens has ever seen, and it shows no signs of conceding to reality. I’ve seen this coming, at least dimly, since I graduated from college (1968), as have millions of people, possibly including yourself. I changed my voter registration from “None of the above” to Democrat to vote for Jesse Jackson in his second presidential run, not because I thought he would make a good president (much less a great one) but because he was at least partly outside the duopoly. I even voted for Ross the Squirrel in '92 for the same reason, although I felt I had to vote against Dole and his cronies four years later. (Have I ever voted FOR anyone for president? Yes, I’ve “thrown away my vote” on the Green candidate ever since Kerry’s spectacular cave on the heels of Al Gore’s tepid defense four years earlier.)

The missed opportunity, if there ever was one, probably came between the Kennedy assassination (1963) and the end of the Viet Nam debacle (1975). What any organized group of “concerned citizens” could have achieved in that period we’ll never know, but it doesn’t seem likely that any such movement could have turned the battleship (sic).

I’ve been optimistic about the prospects since global warming became the new enemy in the early 90s, having heard about it from one of my former professors in 1972. He must have just read one of the articles by oil company scientists that most of us only learned about within the last few years. It would have been easy to deal with had we started in the early 90s. Now science is saying that we have probably already passed the crucial tipping points to keep average global temperature below 1.5 degrees C, and what lies beyond that is uncertain but certainly not inviting.

Whew! I didn’t start that screed intending for it to be so grim. I’ve been reading Viktor Frankl’s Man’s Search for Meaning (finally), about life in the camps. Toward the end of the war he became convinced that such tribulation brings out the best in certain people, not because of any hope for relief but because it is the right thing to do, thereby changing the nature of the situation. I think he was right. I think that amid the turmoil we are already beginning to see that happening, and I expect that we will be seeing more of it as time passes. It might just save us in spite of ourselves.

(Today, just the beginning of the details to have the project looking finished even if not actually quite so by Monday. If we can keep it up by breaking the job into smaller pieces–say a week–with rest in between, We’ll have this 80 year old house and shop looking good and working well before we have to worry about tropicall summers in the temperate zone.

Politics, politicians, and political parties. The ethical-personal characteristics of politicians as well as other positions of authority and how debased that is collectively. Human trafficking and all that entails and generalized predatory behavior. It is not the first time I considered this, but the pervasive aspects just keep coming. Interesting you should use a timeline, when did it go wrong or has it always been that way or has technology intervened. Would we do the same thing with full disclosure?

The first presidential candidate I was eligible to vote for was Robert Kennedy, I think that and the assassination of his bother raised some serious questions about our political process. I think most Americans see that as a dividing line, no less true for me. I think Hillary, who is not really a politician but more of a person that can get things done, just displayed to much truth not by what she said but by what she did. I didn’t vote for her, not that it mattered, my candidate was preordained. I know what you mean, this can get pretty dark. (maybe not entirely for the same reasons)

Ok, I have never conformed to usual standards, I did go to more than one college, and a seminary. I worked under the advanced degrees of my employers. I worked very hard. I qualified at a masters level position after about 12 years. I wonder about this myself. There are some penalties for doing things this way. I went to UCSF to have those great academic minds help me sort this out, that is another story. I did graduate from two of them, one of them was not traditional.

This is a deep understanding of human nature and I agree how powerful doing the right thing can be. At times it takes great courage. I like Kurt Vonnegut, with a similar message but in a different context. So much happened in such a short period of time that it has taken years to assimilate in an even larger context. In geologic time, this is just a episode.

I can see you are determined in your methods. Cheers!

Quite remarkable, as usual. With a little luck, by Monday I should be able to respond directly. I got an extra hour’s sleep last night, so not quite as dragged out tonight, but “extra” requirements (contractors call them “change orders” and charge through the nose for them!), so still just treading water. But the list for tomorrow and Sunday is fairly light, and after that I am taking a vacation and making some changes that can’t be done under pressure.

Oh I can relate, an extra hour sleep is great. You comments are always generous. Ok, more tomorrow then. Beware of those contractors.

Murphy prevailed yet again, but I should be able to complete all of the critical tasks tomorrow and proceed with the two-week vacation. This extended piece of “custom work” has actually gone much more smoothly than it might have. Experience and planning help, but the only known cures for growing old and hence slow and lacking in stamina are unattractive. I do recall how long it took Charlie Biddle to do relatively small tasks on his little sailboat when he was just a few year older than I am now.

I’m sure it is a task well worth the effort, maintain the integrity of your home and also the planned vacation. Aging may seem like a hindrance but there are points of reconciliation. Western culture does not validate age with some of the finer points of life. I stopped trying to move trees, but I discovered wheels. In my friends house every moveable thing has wheels. She is a fine artist, and I think a surrealist but she would disagree. I hope you have something really nice planned.

First day of vacation, and even my wife who is always disappointed agreed I had earned it. (That’s an unfair hit-and-run. Short story, her mother was always disappointed with her, now the tip of a very large iceberg which we need not visit.) I even included a little lagniappe at the expense of a couple of small trim items which I will complete later this week for closure.

Slept “late,” moved slow, baked bread, took out the compost, had a tomato sandwich with a giant, juicy German Johnson, and it’s still early afternoon. I never really appreciated fresh tomatoes until I had a steady supply of really fresh ones. As you may know, tomato sandwiches are a thing in the South, traditionally consisting only of thickly sliced tomatoes on white bread and lots of Duke’s mayonnaise. I quit eating white bread decades ago and have never liked mayonnaise, so I make a “CLT” with spicy mustard on 100% whole wheat, a slice of cheese, and lettuce with a small dab of creamy dressing.

I’ll spend the rest of the day gathering my wits, and making prioritized lists, beginning with putting away all the stuff in the house AND the shop that has piled up in four exhausting weeks. High on the list will be changing the way I go about these projects to avoid this kind of exhaustion. This is Phase 2 of getting the outside of the shop building sound and spiffy, with 4 more phases to go, not including replacing the flat roof that sags in the middle with a new structure with some pitch. We’re looking for a contractor to do that one. But this was by far the biggest and required the most problem-solving. None of the others should be more than a week’s work, to be spread out over two weeks with a week off if more time is needed.

Aging in Western culture: I have flagged an article, maybe two, on just that topic. You’ve probably heard that when someone asked Gandhi what he though about Western civilization, he said he thought it would be a good idea.

Wheels are a great invention, proven in practice for a long time. Again, we’ve come through several centuries of collecting exponentially more stuff–BIG stuff–assuming it would never have to be moved.

I’m not looking at any one big thing, more just doing small things that need doing and others that I just want to do, and doing them at a leisurely pace.

First day of vacation. I remember that feeling, now its a more blended existence. Sounds like you are off to a good start. It is sometimes a fine line between mothers and children or adult children. I took care of my mother at the end of her life and that role reversal was an adjustment. There was a lot of your fired followed by you can’t fire me I quit. Understandable given the circumstances.

I don’t know that much about Southern cooking but that sounds delicious. Especially the fresh tomatoes, well all of it really. I worked with a man that could make the best sourdough, it is a little different in the process but well worth the trouble.

Gathering a few wits here too. This has been a day of disruption. Caring for a severally injured cat that needs regular attention. I’m fairly good at this but in this case I’m not optimistic. It is a lovely black cat and is comfortable.

Aging in Western culture for this and future generations is and will be quite different from previous generations. (sigh) The thing is that it happens to all people one day at a time but there are so many ways to interpret that time. I like Gandhi’s approach to our civilization, lucky that we don’t have centuries of tradition to account for. We can always say we were new at it and made a few mistakes. One of the biggest mistakes is considering our history as starting with discovery. Isn’t it possible to step outside the restraints of Western Civilization? I’m not exactly sure what your work was before you retired but you are a gifted writer.

Yes, I agree wheels are great, trees on wheels another story. I can’t believe I told you about that.

I’m searching my karmic index knowing full well I can change it. Leisurely pace, well done!

I’ve been called a lot of things, but never a “gifted writer” even in this age of Newspeak! Just before I read that line I was marveling at how much living and how much “deep thought” you pack into just a few words. It reminds me of Saroyan, not necessarily in writing style but in what is conveyed. Or maybe my memory is just really shot. It has been at least 50 years since I read The Human Comedy, but it made a strong impression. I still have my paperback copy plus an anthology of his other writing, both high on the list for WHEN I make time to read, and that’s one of the changes I aim to set in motion in these next few days.

May the cat come through under your care. I’ve loved the little devils since I was three years old. Last summer when my sister in law was in the process of moving it fell to me to care for her two feral cats, which required quite a bit of cat-proofing in my living space to minimize damage and chaos. Baby Brother was a pushover, Big Sister not so much, but we had a pretty good time for a month and a half–zero damage and only a little chaos.

Oops, PS: I will be taking it easy this evening and will respond to some of your recent wisdom.

Turns out I’m still a little overextended. I wasn’t surprised yesterday (Monday) when I “hit the wall” (some athletes call it the “bonk”) about 2:00, and figured I’d be almost back to normal today. Instead I hit the wall about 10:00 and forgot I had a short evening meeting, and I need to be up at 7:00 in the morning. But if I take a half hour to do what I said earlier I will still get 8-9 hours of sleep–a great luxury!

So starting directly above and working up: I’m not familiar with the term “karmic index,” having never gone very deeply into karmic theory. But I think you’re saying that you have the power to assess what you are doing with your time and through reflection change it for the better by slowing down to allow time for mindfulness to take place. That may be way off base, and if so we’ll start over. But if it’s at all close I understand it and will have learned a new way of expressing an important concept.

Trees on wheels: Y-e-e-e-ess, I can see that in certain contexts, e.g. the stereotypical potted palm. But beyond that, I would be very concerned!

On writing: Big topic. I have trained myself over the past 20 years especially to write and also speak precisely. That is a responsibility of any teacher, although metaphor and other indirect modes are often highly appropriate in the humanities. But for technical knowledge, even in a pseudo-science such as economics, imprecise writing and speech lead to fuzzy concepts, and so to misunderstanding, which can have serious consequences. Remember the Mars probe that crashed 20-25 years ago because one group of rocket scientists was using metric system (standard in the sciences for decades) and the other, for some unexplained reason, was using miles and pounds.

But there is more to it than that, and I have little formal training in those areas. However, just a few moments ago I came upon this article that sheds some light on how we use words and why, an instance of synchronicity (C. G. Jung), but also of Grace. Amazing. Don’t overthink this; in fact, don’t think about it at all. As I said earlier, thou ****** (no strikethrough in this font!) YOU convey in few words much deep information that might require pages of “precise” text.

Whew.

Western Civ, etc.: Oh–I taught economics for 8 1/2 years, and before that I taught grade school math to adults for 5 years. One part of that was very rewarding, a class for elementary ed majors combining content and methods. Alas, among the math teachers at four community colleges feeding into the special program at the university to bring the professors to the students (so they could hold down part-time jobs while raising their families), I was told that I was the only one who understood what the people in the College of Education wanted. They went back to the older methods that had long since been proved to prevent people from learning math.

If by “discovery” you mean like Columbus, yes a thousand times. Can we get outside the culture into which we were born? Yes, at least to a considerable degree, but that thought never even occurs to most people. Perhaps more will recognize it as things move faster still. One event that helped to open my eyes was the chance discovery of Max Mueller’s Sacred Books of the East in the Tulsa Public Library in my senior year in high school. I have had such remarkable good luck throughout my life that it’s hard to see it merely as luck. Grace is probably a better term.

The article on aging in Western culture (“HISTORY: ‘neutralize elderly voters’”) was an email from an advocacy organization called Social Security Works. If I can find it on their web site I will send you a link.

The two sentences after that are worth a paragraph each, but not tonight. Surely you are seeing how gifts for writing can at the very least take very different forms, with all or most of them being valid in their own contexts!

I’m sorry this is so late, didn’t sleep much last night and tired today. I too, very much appreciate the value of sleep and for me a bit cranky when I miss to much. I took a nap. I had some home grown tomatoes outside my door today given to me by a neighbor and I thought of synchronicity. I have a vague understanding of Jung’s work. There was a copy of Man and his symbols around the house when I was growing up. I think he did some work on the I Ching as well. My memory is definitely not as reliable as it once was.

More about writing styles later, I think you have a gift. Most of my writing skills developed writing as part of an interdisciplinary team. And, doing task analysis for training objectives. It starts with a hundred thoughts and becomes better defined. I worked with people that had very limited language, most had no spoken (expressive) language. I bet your thinking that must have been a trip, it was.

I agree, animals are essential to our well being. Cat are so intuitive, they must have known you have a good heart and rare kindness. And, a tolerance for chaos.

I read the article from the link you posted (which is just excellent) it mentions this exchange very well. Karmic index is my own term adapted from my understanding to convey something I do. Referenced as esoteric. Karma can be a very broad term from, cause and effect, to karmic index meaning compilation (the book of life, Akashic record, there is a Buddhist equivalent) A personal record. I think your understanding is pretty close. Meditation is one of the ways to understand this.

I do understand what you are saying about the value of writing with clear intent and precision. I think we have some common ground. Sacred Books of the East is substantial reading for a young person. I know a lot of people don’t believe in luck but it serves as contrast when all else fails. It is great when you can recognize that grace is present in your life.

Yes, please do send the link. I will check as well.

I’m going to re-read the article you posted too. Thanks very much

And yes, Discovery in the context of Columbus

Just to clarify something, I didn’t mean the interdisciplinary team was without speech. I meant the relationship of that team to identified needs of another group.

“I’m sorry this is so late”

Couldn’t prove it by me! Sorry to hear you’re having sleep disturbances too. Surely the tomatoes compensated in part.

I am by no means an expert on Jung, but what I have read has been almost all positive. He was apparently the second person in the new field of human psychology/psychiatry to break with Freud, the first being Alfred Adler. He is best known for his emphasis on symbols in connection with archetypes, the “collective unconscious” (which has not aged well), and synchronicity, events that seem simultaneously to be coincidental yet carrying deep meaning. His work broadened the field tremendously and paved the way for the “humanistic” psychologists such as Carl Rogers, Abraham Maslow, Rollo May, and Erich Fromm, which was to some extent a backlash against Skinner’s deterministic behavioral approach.

Your story about working in an interdisciplinary team, apparently for the purpose of training persons who were essentially non-verbal, certainly helps to explain why you write the way you do, which is very well, along with being compact and more intuitive than didactic. More later on why that interests me.

I had forgotten Edgar Cayce and the Akashic Record. I was not aware of the connection with Buddhism, but it is also closely related to the mystic branches found in every religious tradition. That approach works better for me than positing one or more individual unseen entities that explain everything and often pull the strings that make up what the Greeks called Fate. I barely dipped into Mueller’s Sacred Books (a huge series!), but it gave me a basis for recognizing and understanding things I came across later, helping me to see how they fit together.

Mid-day I decided to turn on the air conditioner and spend the rest of the day writing and thinking. Instead I spent it sorting stacks of periodicals, clearing off my desk, and putting away laundry that got overlooked the last two weekends. It all needs to be done, and the order doesn’t matter much. Tomorrow, next layers of the same, plus cleaning paint brushes and rollers while it may still be possible.

Forgot to mention: I woke up this morning thinking of some of these things, and with the phrase, “The world made new again” in my head. It’s not in my Bartlett’s (1980 edition), and the search engines brought up only three references, one about Eleanor Roosevelt and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and the most common, a book from National Geographic on why the “Age of Exploration” happened. More synchronicity.