I have it memorized

May 28, 2012

Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.

Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battle-field of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.

But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate — we can not consecrate — we can not hallow — this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract.

The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced.

It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us — that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion — that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain — that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom — and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.

Abraham Lincoln – Gettysburg Address


The Crunch, by Charles Bukowski

February 6, 2012

too much too little

too fat
too thin
or nobody.

laughter or
tears

haters
lovers

strangers with faces like
the backs of
thumb tacks

armies running through
streets of blood
waving winebottles
bayoneting and fucking
virgins.

an old guy in a cheap room
with a photograph of M. Monroe.

there is a loneliness in this world so great
that you can see it in the slow movement of
the hands of a clock

people so tired
mutilated
either by love or no love.

people just are not good to each other
one on one.

the rich are not good to the rich
the poor are not good to the poor.

we are afraid.

our educational system tells us
that we can all be
big-ass winners

it hasn’t told us
about the gutters
or the suicides.

or the terror of one person
aching in one place
alone

untouched
unspoken to

watering a plant.

people are not good to each other.
people are not good to each other.
people are not good to each other.

I suppose they never will be.
I don’t ask them to be.

but sometimes I think about
it.

the beads will swing
the clouds will cloud
and the killer will behead the child
like taking a bite out of an ice cream cone.

too much
too little

too fat
too thin
or nobody

more haters than lovers.

people are not good to each other.
perhaps if they were
our deaths would not be so sad.

meanwhile I look at young girls
stems
flowers of chance.

there must be a way.

surely there must be a way that we have not yet
though of.

who put this brain inside of me?

it cries
it demands
it says that there is a chance.

it will not say
“no.”

[Originally published in “Love is a Dog From Hell”]


“The predicament of women is a little trickier to see, but if sharply accelerated rates of suicide, heart disease, emotional illness, sterility, and other pathological conditions are an indicator, the admission of women en masse to the unisex workplace is not an unmixed blessing.” -John Taylor Gatto


‘We’ll have a dictatorship soon in the US’

October 1, 2009

The grand old man of letters Gore Vidal claims America is ‘rotting away’ — and don’t expect Barack Obama to save it [ London Times ]

Last year he famously switched allegiance from Hillary Clinton to Barack Obama during the Democratic nomination process for president. Now, he reveals, he regrets his change of heart. How’s Obama doing? “Dreadfully. I was hopeful. He was the most intelligent person we’ve had in that position for a long time. But he’s inexperienced. He has a total inability to understand military matters. He’s acting as if Afghanistan is the magic talisman: solve that and you solve terrorism.”

#Regrets, I’ve had a few#


Brilliant

July 29, 2009

Charlie Smith at Of Two Minds weighs in on the health sick-care reform boondoggle.

There is a solution so simple and so radical that it is “impossible” (and of course you’re reading it here): shut down insurance and all government entitlements, and return to the “golden era” of the 1950s when everyone paid cash for health-care.

Be sure and check out the very interesting graphic of costs associated with giving birth at Santa Monica hospital ca. 1952.

Would returning to the days of old be regressive? Would quality of care plummet? Would the cost put the health of people living from paycheck to paycheck at risk?

The answer to each question has to be an emphatic No.

Has care gotten better since 1952? Only marginally. People are still getting sick and dying.

Quality of care will actually improve. After all, nearly all the money paid for treatment goes to insurance companies… which goes to cover inflated values of costs, and handsomely reward executives with exorbitant compensation.  After all the execs didn’t get into health-care to help people, rather it is to help themselves. Put the money where it counts, in actual care for the patient.

The free market will actually drive the cost of health-care down so that everyone would be able to actually afford it. Even people like me who are uninsured (my choice). They would also be forced to answer that wake-up call that they are responsible for their own health and not the fatherhomeland, and better quit smoking/overeating/drinking/drug usage/texting while driving.

Debate as it is purposely being framed isn’t about health care it is about health insurance
The entire health-care debate underway is completely slanted in maintaining the status quo. It isn’t about how to best maintain and support good health of our fellow man and child; it is centered on how best to compensate the middle man, i.e. the insurers and big pharma, and inflate the cost of care to guarantee big bonuses, while still having the ultimate say on quality of care you should recieve- and the healthinsco still reserves the right to refuse you any time it is deemed too costly.

It makes perfect sense to let the free market set the level of each individuals cost of care, not bureaucrats, not parties where profit motive is their primary (only) interest.

Not only would this idea of a cash-based system be the tonic necessary to eliminate fraud and waste, but the quality of care would actually rise.

But of course, rational ideas such as this are immediately shut out of the “debate” because so many special interests have their hands in the pie. They prefer to install a system that helps them to rip-off Americans, where the state and crony accomplices want to keep you alive as long as possible to squeeze the last dollar out of your cold dead hands.

[Of Two Minds]

***UPDATE***

Ilargi comments:

The difference between US and Western European health care lies exclusively in the political power acquired by corporate industries, in this case -mainly- a combination of drug manufacturers (closely linked to the chemical industry) and insurance companies (which are in turn closely linked to Wall Street banks). The US needs to fabricate its own system because it needs to satisfy the perverted influence industry has on not just health care itself, but also on the political process.

[theautomaticearth]

***UPDATE***4:11 PM 8/5/2009

Healthcare “Reform”: Cui Bono–To Whose Benefit?

[Of Two Minds]


“It will be many years before the masses discover just how completely they have been fleeced by the power elite.” -Richard Smith


Notable Quotables for $20 Alex

March 8, 2009

“Posterity is just around the corner” [Wikipedia]

“He is a nice man, but he is out of his depth.” [Spectator]

“What I don’t think people should do is suddenly stuff money in their mattresses and pull back completely from spending” [Faux Hotlanta]

“The graveyards are full of indispensable men.”  [Wikipedia]

“In today’s regulatory environment, it’s virtually impossible to violate rules…it’s impossible for a violation to go undetected, and certainly not for a considerable period of time.”  [Wikipedia]

“You cannot help the poor by destroying the rich. You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong. You cannot bring about prosperity by discouraging thrift. You cannot lift the wage earner up by pulling the wage payer down. You cannot further the brotherhood of man by inciting class hatred. You cannot build character and courage by taking away people’s initiative and independence. You cannot help people permanently by doing for them what they could and should do for themselves.” [Wikipedia]

“Self-regulation is to regulation as self-importance is to importance”  [FT]

“Rome is on fire. The government is pumping gasoline through the fire hoses, and the only ones benefiting are the recipients of the trillions and trillions of dollars of your money. Fairly soon, I think it will be safe to say that the formerly prosperous middle class will become the working poor, in a land filled with half-vacant strip malls selling shoddily-made crap to a populace so numb and dazed it doesn’t know the difference and can’t remember anything better. Just as 50 years ago seems like a fairy-tale time, when a gas station attendant could support a wife, kids, a car or two, and a home on his salary, a few years ago will sound surreal to our children; imagine a time when two working parents could afford a home and a car! Imagine when there was enough work for both of them to even work steadily! Imagine owning a car! Or a home! That’s crazy talk, and we can’t change things, so why dwell on it…”  [Sanity Check]

“In characteristic Trump fashion, Trump Ocean Resort Baja will be the best of the best, and consequently always in demand” [Breitbart]


First they came for the homeowners and I didn’t complain.
Then they came for the credit card holders and I didn’t complain.
When they came for me, there was nobody left to complain.


Ecology of starvation

December 22, 2008

Now we come to the ecology of starvation. In any ecosystem, any fast-reproducing creature can, once freed of predators and disease, eat its way through the entire available food supply. It then starves to death in great numbers, reducing the load on the ecological system to the point the “carrying capacity” of the environment rises from near-zero to a restored balance.

Every creature will exceed its environment’s carrying capacity if given the opportunity, and we as a nation have long exceeded our financial resources. Rather than re-scale our promised benefits and government to our true surplus, we have borrowed money from our children and grandchildrens’ future surpluses to fund our own risk-abatement/benefits. Now like rats proliferating on an island, our promises to ourselves far exceed the carrying capacity of our real economy; we must now tighten our belts for a generation or two, or starve as we consume the last morsels of future productivity.

In a financial sense, we are eating the seeds needed for the next generation and stripping the fiscal ecology of assets, reducing its future carrying capacity.

[of two minds]


” Only a nation convinced of its invulnerability could be so deluded as to spend its waning days of wealth arguing about how the borrowed trillions should be divided, as if they were the spoils of conquest rather than the outright theft of our children’s future.” -Charles Hugh Smith


Hell, I coulda told them that

February 27, 2008

if only they had asked:

Prozac, used by 40m people, does not work say scientists

Analysis of unseen trials and other data concludes it is no better than placebo