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Showing posts from October 14, 2011

Alabama Shame Continues and Creates Chaos in State

Crisis in Alabama: Immigration Law HB 56 Causes Chaos | American Civil Liberties Union: "Alabama has been in a state of utter chaos following a federal judge’s Sept. 28 ruling upholding some of the worst provisions of H.B. 56, the state’s draconian anti-immigrant law. ACLU staffers on the ground report that masses of families are fleeing the state in fear. The ACLU and ACLU of Alabama, along with a coalition of civil rights groups, are working to protect the rights of all Alabamians by ensuring that the community has accurate information about the law."

There is much more here in this dismal story of vengeful politics and attendant suffering. It is shameful and warrants national condemnation.

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The collapse of government

For Dispirited French Voters, ‘None of the Above’ Seems Best - NYTimes.com: "It could be called the election of “d├ęsamour,” one of those nearly untranslatable words, meaning a falling out of love, a disenchantment mixed with disillusion."

I wonder if we are not front row spectators at the collapse of governments and of corporations as well - of institutions too large to deal with people as people. That would open the door to the pattern language understanding that a community of 10,000 is about the max that will spawn both a vital local economy and the possibility of face to face democracy. I do not think we are at an either or point any more. We are at a triad point where the third thing is what will come out of the current collapse which will be global.
Cap tip Robert

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On knowing what we want

'Occupy' Protests Standing Up to Reaganism - NYTimes.com: "Even the energized protesters in Zuccotti Park know their left-leaning populist movement has found its complaint — “we are the 99 percent” — but not its remedy. They heard as much from Slavoj Zizek, the best-selling Slovenian philosopher, who was this week’s celebrity intellectual speaker: “We know what we do not want. But what do we want?”"

This complex of blogs contains some and will contain more of what we want. Look first at Beyond Pattern Language in the list of blogs to your right. Then the Noxious Oil and Sprawl World blogs. Then maybe Revaluing Values. Look most anywhere else. It all hangs together. We want a world where there is a balance between things and where the goals of community and personal fulfillment are not at odds. We want a world based on non-idolatry, tolerance, democracy and helpfulness.
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It's the digital exam, stupid

Yes I am familiar with the stupid framing of the prostate controversyI had my prostate robotically removed a few years backNow the PSA exam has been placed on the chopping blockThat's stupidThe chopping block should be reserved for every doctor Who cannot answer affirmatively a simple questionDid you perform a thorough, educated digital examSuch an exam is what what saved meI had a false negative PSAWith a digital exam you FEEL the lump that was not there the last timeThen you get your biopsyThen your Gleason ScoreIf it is high enough you choose your treatmentThis is all subtle stuff Well beyond the competence of The New York Times to comprehend apparentlyI have never seen it written that the bestWay to determine if you are at riskFrom prostate cancer Is a PSA testAND a digital examI wonder if some doctors are actually forgoing digital examsBecause they are relying on PSAsIf that is the case That is a scandalThis prostate story has been Macerated by poor framing 
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One Minute Christian

One Minute Christian:
"The One Minute Christian is a short book which explains exactly what is involved in moving from a dying local church structure to a vibrant and intentional local community that embodies both the simplicity and the transforming power of the way of living that Jesus preached and embodied. Begin by creating a symbol -- your own version. Draw a circle. Draw a cross within it, but extending out somewhat. Below this symbol draw the number:01.
The circle is the world, a very small circle in a circle we can't fathom which we call the universe. The cross is the sign of God's utter love for the whole inhabited earth and every creature above, upon and within it."

I wrote this in the late 1980s when I lived in Boston. We were going to implement its ideas when my close friend and co-worker was stricken and eventually died. Instead of doing this, I spent days wandering the corridors of Brigham and Women's with my friend until he could walk no more. The idea…

Ineradicable blinkers from Nietzsche's Zarathustra

"Lo! I show you THE LAST MAN.

"What is love? What is creation? What is longing? What is a star?"--so asketh the last man and blinketh.

The earth hath then become small, and on it there hoppeth the last man who maketh everything small. His species is ineradicable like that of the ground-flea; the last man liveth longest.

"We have discovered happiness"--say the last men, and blink thereby.

They have left the regions where it is hard to live; for they need warmth. One still loveth one's neighbour and rubbeth against him; for one needeth warmth.

Turning ill and being distrustful, they consider sinful: they walk warily. He is a fool who still stumbleth over stones or men!

A little poison now and then: that maketh pleasant dreams. And much poison at last for a pleasant death."

'via Blog this'


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When will people get it through their head

Bad Planning and Sprawl Are a Lethal Formula Worldwide | Sprawl World:

When will people get it through their head
That planning as we know it leaves us dead Architects and planners need to think Instead of bowing to the folk who blink
Well if you want more click through to the NYT evidence at the link above. We have built a world ripe for ascending weather emergencies and when they take place what do we do? Rebuild. How dumb can we be? We need to get rid of ascending car and road presence and begin building human scale cyber-enabled communities that are car free and that recognize the common need for urban amenities within walking distance everywhere. If you think the blinking reference in my quatrain is random, think again and go back to Zarathustra and reread Nietzsche's prophetic description of a comfort-addicted world. Chilling. Apposite. Relevant.

Bad Planning and Sprawl Are a Lethal Formula Worldwide

The world is badly planned accident prone Submerged in floods wind-battered criminal Reality demands thought toward design Toward truth and beauty and what's ethical

Stephen's Remarkable Kindle Store 




Why a new Tao

The Tao embraces progress on its terms | New Tao Posts:

The reason is simple. Progress is an inevitable component of reality. A Tao written ages ago will deal with the needs of that age. Much that is written in this vein will not be relevant because it is obviated by progress. We no longer wish to coach rulers on achieving mastery over servants and slaves. We no longer counsel war and extol the feats of battle. Yet there is this evolutionary Reality with a capital R. The project of the planet. Of the cosmos. Of what we know and what we cannot or do not know. The New Tao is not offered as authority but an invitation, All can become New Tao authors. The fruits of the spirit are universal. There is nothing in anyone's mind that is not in everyone's mind.

Peak Oil Doesn't Bother Me

The Peak Oil Initiation « Bill Totten's Weblog:

What bothers me is that people do not see how economic recovery depends on understanding why our economy is collapsing. The Occupy folk will probably understand it sooner than most. Long before we understand that we can no longer have cars and highways as we do now, a counter movement to create car free communities will commence. All through the list of needs, the movement will travel at speed. Toynbee understood challenge and response. Everyone knows that oil will peak. Few see why this is the key to future prosperity and global democratic revolution. But some do and they are the creative minority that will create the next new world.
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How Jesus and John Are Portrayed in Markman: A Film About Jesus

Markman: A Film About Jesus: " DAVID: John Watters was my friend.

KELLY: Tell me about him.

DAVID: John was my best friend. We grew up together here. We believed the same things.

KELLY: Rebels with a cause?

David's eyes shift away from Kelly toward his memories.

DAVID: John got me to go to college. We worked our way through Oregon State. Then he talked me into theological school. (beat) John saved my life. The American Chemical Company had this secret plant stuck out in the Mohave Desert. One night we snuck in and I climbed the smoke stack. I was gonna try to block it. I didn't reckon on the guards though. I got shot. Can you believe it?

They make eye contact now -- and the level is deepening.

DAVID: (Cont.) I was bleeding bad, and I couldn't move. John faced down the guards and climbed the stack. I don't know how in God's name he did it, but he carried me down. He hauled me into Bakersfield. They said I had ten minutes to live. After that…

Birth of a salesman (OccupyVideo)

I am merely the hero of this imagined memoir-fiction

Manhattan Bully Wars (1947):
"The boy's mind moved to his recent Valentine's Day crisis. Among Adam Panflick's many activities, the most important involved girls. He preferred girls to boys. They were prettier. They talked better. They did not hit him. They laughed at his humor. He was at ease in their presence. His very best friend was Buzzy and Buzzy was a girl.

He thought: "How stupid I was to take two boxes of chocolates to Harris's!" This thought was accompanied by a sphincter contraction and a visible grimace.

Adam attended two dancing schools, Miss Bloss's at the Plaza and Miss Harris's pleasant East Side establishment. "I meant well,” he reassured himself. "Here were two supremely beautiful girls, one a radio star. Ah! " "

This excerpt is from my just-posted novella "Manhattan Bully Wars" (1947). As a nomad of the universe I have no need to make millions so I do not seek to do anything but find a few avid …

How much dough the oligarchs rake in

The 25 highest-paid CEOs in America - Business - Forbes.com - msnbc.com: "While the stagnant economy continues to hurt those at the bottom of the American workforce, there’s plenty of money for the .0001 percent at the top. (The compensation totals, compiled by Forbes’ stats guru Scott DeCarlo, include salary, bonuses, perks and the value of exercised stock options through Sept. 6. Sources are CompuStat ExecuComp and SEC filings)."

'via Blog this'

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A whole blog about true values

Welcome to Revaluing Values | Revaluing Values: "I have spent most of my life pondering values, never once lapsing into the most common uses of that term. The most common use is monetary. Good and bad values used to assess the value put upon goods and services. There is a second use of values that denigrates the word in a different way. Take American values or family values. Code phrases for putting country first or promoting one ideal of the family. This use of values compromises the universality that attaches to values to which all can and should subscribe."

Yes a whole blog with nothing but values-related pointers and posts. The pointers mainly go to longer pieces posted over time here and there. This is a niche blog. After 20 years I finally get it.

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Fractured Herodotus with an Ellroy Slant

And and finally Cyrus is bestirred. Our binary is complete. | Herodotus meets Ellroy:
"Two frigging years wasted. Croesus in mourning. Son gone. Croesus mainly mad. His anger builds. Persians are massing to the east. He can feel the pressure

Croesus has a purpose. He can feel it rising. Eviscerate the Persians. Humiliate them. Boss them. Get criminals to inform on them. Get ready to rumble. Hurry up.

But first the Oracles - yes, they are multiplying. He goes as far as to shrine of Ammon in Libya. But oracles are not always ecumenical. Once again the Pythian prophetess gains the inside track by guessing Croesus' gastronomic proclivities. How did she know he liked tortoise? But she does. And that is only the beginning."
I have been reading James Ellroy. He writes short sentences. He packs lots in. It is a different way of writing. I figured I would try it with the stories woven by Herodotus. When I get the urge I add another "chapter". I am still fascinated by all…

The Worst A Man Can Get

Fuck Everything, We're Doing Five Blades | The Onion - America's Finest News Source: "Would someone tell me how this happened? We were the fucking vanguard of shaving in this country. The Gillette Mach3 was the razor to own. Then the other guy came out with a three-blade razor. Were we scared? Hell, no. Because we hit back with a little thing called the Mach3Turbo. That's three blades and an aloe strip. For moisture. But you know what happened next? Shut up, I'm telling you what happened—the bastards went to four blades. Now we're standing around with our cocks in our hands, selling three blades and a strip. Moisture or no, suddenly we're the chumps. Well, fuck it. We're going to five blades. "

Funny? I'll show you funny. Paying as much as a motel used to cost for four blades in a thick plastic bed with a fifth spot empty so the oligarchy can squeeze a few mills out of the millions. In a package that is designed to be unopenable without a sharp…

Good introduction to "A Pattern Language" Video

Good introduction to "A Pattern Language" | Beyond Pattern Language:

I call it the video with half a head. But the guy knows whereof he speaks and shows you the book I can see in is place a few feet away from me. And indicates it is worth at least four years of higher education - with no student loans to worry about. I call my blog Beyond Pattern Language because designers simply forget this book and proceed on the techno-corporate model. The oligarchical model where a few control the many. Beyond Pattern Language integrates techno with pattern lingo and rocks on to car-free cyber communities. No one appears to listen but that's deceptive. Some of us are moving gently toward that 100th monkey, just as masses are moving with some good restraint to nudge the oligarchy into something like honesty and community concern.

Global Online Privacy

It all starts at the Boston Public Library

Adam Panflick: The Boston Car Wars (1980s):
"Adam Panflick stood up at a table in the Boston Public Library, pulled $300 in crumpled bills from a pocket of his baggy pants and let the money fall over the fifty or so volumes he'd been perusing through the afternoon.
"Anybody want some?" he honked.
A few regulars looked his way and hurriedly returned to their books. A senile guard coughed.
"Good!" Adam honked again, scooping up the bills. "I have a use for these anyway." He noticed a portion of his ample paunch protruding from a buttonless aperture in his denim shirt and gave it a paternal pat."

The first sentences of the novella that describes the mentality of a man who has turned against the automobile and all its ancillary evils. It is available for the reading in a single post.

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