I Guess That Makes It Official, Game On [WARNING: REALITY]

If you are wondering what the crowd is a gathering around when the government thugs use a flashbang, it’s this man.

Two tours Iraq, check.  One tour Oakland...

If you are wondering what kind of low-life scum sucking socialistic parasite he is to be attending such a protest, first up, fuck you, second, here you go.

Oakland’s independent police review body will examine the clashes between riot officers and protesters that left an Iraq war veteran in a critical condition as Occupy protestors prepare to rally at the same spot for a third night of protests.

Police battled protesters following an Occupy Oakland march to demonstrate against the closing of two occupations in the city in the early hours of Tuesday morning. More than 100 people have been arrested in Oakland since police cleared a camp in Frank Ogawa plaza.

Scott Olsen, 24, suffered a fractured skull and brain swelling after he was allegedly hit in the head by a police projectile during the clashes on Tuesday. A spokesperson for Highland hospital in east Oakland confirmed he was critically ill after being admitted on Tuesday night.

[full story]

One thing I generally know is that when people have nothing left, or very little to risk other than their own skin in the game, they tend to push toward extreme solutions.  There is a race on now, and that race is whether or not our society can change fast enough to keep itself relevant to the vast majority of the people in our society.  It’s dang near an article of faith around here.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. That to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed. That whenever any form of government becomes destructive to these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their safety and happiness.

To be clear, I don’t think OWS is, as of yet, a full-on revolutionary movement.  But there is a stark difference in what is going on here and what happened with the Tea Party.

It’s evident now that “Tea Party” is really just code for “Hardcore Republican”.  I call them “Fox News Republicans” and their ultimate act of defiance culminated in the 2010 elections.  This hugely revolutionary act was to elect a bunch of…wait for it…hardcore Republicans to the House, and give control of that chamber back to the folks who had it under Bush. (they failed in the Senate, because Senate districts, known as “states”, are harder to gerrymander and get nutjobs elected on straight party votes than house districts).

So any comparison between the two “movements” is shallow at best, and more likely the result of lazy “left-right” thinking than any real analysis.

There’s a book that one needs to read to understand why I’m being so melodramatic (I’m not) about the situation, and throwing out big words and bloody pictures.   It’s here.  A very quick read, in it you will find a section about this.. (from the ‘pedia).

 To be successful, these mass movements need the adherents to be willing to sacrifice themselves and others for the future goals. To do so, mass movements often glorify the past and devalue the present. Mass movements appeal to frustrated people who are dissatisfied with their current state, but are capable of a strong belief in the future. As well, mass movements appeal to people who want to escape a flawed self by creating an imaginary self and joining a collective whole. Some categories of people who may be attracted to mass movements include poor people, misfits, former soldiers, and people who feel thwarted in their endeavors.

To put it simply, you fucked with the wrong Marine.

I’m not sure if you folks are aware, but our President (the one who won a Nobel Peace Prize) is ending wars left and right.  He’s going to end the one in Afghanistan before the 2012 election, bank on it.  That’s a whole lot less soldiers being needed, a whole bunch of which are going to get shafted by a government now focused on cutting spending (on them).

That’s, as they use to say in that commercial, two great tastes that taste great together, a purpose…and an army.

OWS isn’t going away.  A good portion of the 99% are paying attention, and now there’s blood on the ground.    Our blood, on our ground.

So yea…like I said…game on.

 

Advertisements

Holy Shit, I Still Have a Website.

My lord, I’ve been spending too much time on Facebook.

I’ve neglected my role here, as RPN. My deepest apologies.

To catch you up to the story quickly (this would be Chapter 12 for those reading at home), our hero in the story has taken to walking the Earth in order to save it.

Which sounds all grandiose and shit, but is actually much more mundane and all work-like in this our Real World.

There are so many problems to fix you see, and only so much time in which to do so. What to do first? Where should I focus my talents *now*.

And so I picked one, as so many do in these days, off the List of Craig. A truly wondrous resource, which once again reaffirms the fact that we are wondering into a new Age of human civilization (the Information One).

So in order to continue the trend of outputting so much information at once onto the Interwebs at once, and blasting it off into the ether of other’s minds, I shall continue my story about my current job.

I’m walking the world to save the world (mainly because I like vague self-referential loops, as illustrated in Chapter something or other).

Now I’m doing so literally. With an organization that focused on a problem near and dear to my heart, electronics.

I’ll let the New York Times update you on the solution that many states have adopted.

This month, Edward Reilly, 35, finally let go of the television he had owned since his college days.

Although the Mitsubishi set was technologically outdated, it had sat for years in Mr. Reilly’s home in Portland, Me., because he did not know what else to do with it, given the environmental hazards involved in discarding it.

But the day after the nationwide conversion to digital television signals took effect on June 12, Mr. Reilly decided to take advantage of a new wave of laws in Maine and elsewhere that require television and computer manufacturers to recycle their products free of charge. He dropped off his television at an electronic waste collection site near his home and, he said, immediately gained “peace of mind.”

Over the course of that day, 700 other Portland residents did the same.

I have been working, for the last three months of so, on legislation in Texas, of all places, for similar services.  This being Texas, and not Maine, our effort ultimately failed thanks the diabolical pen of one James Richard “Rick” (a.k.a “Jimmy Dick”) Perry.   And his fabulous hair.

More info on that here.

So I spent three months walking the earth, talking to folks, telling them to write their Representative, and their Senator.  And after the bill passed the House and the Senate, I asked folks to write to Rick Perry, and tell that [redacted] they supported the bill.  And they did.  Hundreds of them. Personally, for me, I picked up and delivered over 200 letters.   I know Perry got many, many thousands more.

And then one man with one pen erased that effort.  Or so it would seem, and so it did seem for the week or so after it happened.

Then one day, around last week, as we began to focus our attention on another aspect of the electronics recycling problem (and it is one, don’t kid yourself.  Each American consumes and shits out about five pounds of it a year, and someone has to eat that shit, if we don’t deal with it ourselves) I got my first real achievement in my walking the earth thing.  Rick Perry’sPen had nothing to do with it, and affected it not in the least.

I didn’t say how much would help, or really much more than how much it meant to me that he do something.   The organization with which I am working has an Ultimate Membership Level.   The way the walking the Earth thing works, in the Real World, has a lot to do with talking to people out on the street.  Or, more directly, in their homes.  Hence, there’s a good bit of walking the street, and a good bit of knocking on doors, and some sweet, sweet (and sometimes bitter) bits of talking to folks.  Good, Texas, Folks.  About the Environment and Electronic Waste (which is oh-so-sexy as cause, I know…).

A challenge, to say the least.   As our group is a political lobbying organization, we ask people who agree with what we are doing to help out with the campaign financially.  We have an Ultimate Membership Level.   So to finally continue the real story, I didn’t say how much to help.

I just left a thought, and a pen.   And he used it to erase Rick Perry’s slight, and I realized one pen can’t stop the world from turning.  Not with with so many people walking on it in the same direction.

The direction I walk is toward one of our many possible futures.  The one I aim for is a sustainable future, where we get to have our electronic toys and don’t have to eat them too.

Walk with me, if you would…

….

Anyway, in case anyone is wondering (Hi Mom!) I’ll be walking the Earth tomorrow.  We should hit 100 degrees or so, which is like, boiling, in metric.

peace,

Wah

Let’s Start This Off With a Video…

…then I’ll tell you a story about my week.

It was the best of weeks, and it was the worst of weeks.

Sunday: My week started with the end of the football season, as noted here. That was a great game and a great night.  I met a friend during the game that asked me to go to The Killers show on Wednesday.  I agreed.  Some folks also poured water on my laptop, which I didn’t agree with so much.  Laptop dies, and a part of me dies with it.

Monday: Wake to find out the Laptop is still dead.  This is bad news, as I do most of my writing and video and editing and book-related stuff on my laptop.  I am sad.

Tuesday: Run around all day trying to get stuff done without a laptop.  Start messing with the laptop (I have a special power to make computers work again, it’s called “tinkering”) and low and behold, it comes back to life. This makes me very happy.  I find out I am NOT going to the Killer’s show, as my friend has a better friend, or something.

Wednesday:  Check bank account…sad again.  Get call to see if I still want to go to Killer’s show, happy again.  Go to Killers, dance my freakin’ ass off, cheer wildly, have a much better time than the person who asked me to go.  Kinda sad about that.  Still a fun show though. I thought they have the makings of some nice jam/funk band, but usually go back to pop before the jam gets really grooving.   This was probably the best song.

That little dude is a rockstar, no question about it.  And he’s the only one in the band that doesn’t look like he could play in a CCR cover-band and be totally cool with it.

Thursday:  Check bank account…really sad.  Go for a long, intense walk/dance off (I walk like those people in iPod commercials) to figure out WTF to do.  Come to a decision that involves my books, my toys and various stores that buy stuff from people who are in a jam, financially, and haven’t been able to find shit for work since the economy went to hell.  Oh, and people who took a settlement package instead of unemployment insurance, which got extended for people not like me.

Finish walking, toss a coin to decide on quiet night or friends.   Decide to go check on a friend who was nice enough to buy a book.  End up wandering around various bars in Dallas, getting comped, talking about reality with smart people (i.e. my take on it…wrote a book about it), and doing a bit of dancing.  Great day.

Oh, and I also met this guy who is like my long lost brother, but he’s white and I’m black.  Weird, huh?

I also told a couple people why I have such a good time enjoying myself…it has to do with that video I posted first.  I’ve seen too much not to know a good time, and good people, when I see them.  And I know how to dance (both metaphorically and literally).  Plus, I smile a lot because I’m so happy doing fun things with good people.

Friday:  Have a date that was postponed because of some aforementioned internment (got arrested after writing a book and showing it to the wrong people).   Plans change, Stars tickets become available, I put back on the “Wah” jersey and Obama hat (sideways) for some Hockey.  Dallas wins the game 10-2. A totally unbelievable hockey score.  I started screaming for 10 when they made it to seven.  They seemed to like the screaming.  It might be time to start testing for steroids, as the last guy I screamed at in a Dallas sporting event hit me a home run (then got traded to the Yankees).

Saturday:  Sleeping day that turned into a dancing night after a timely text message.  Got to dance my ass off, which I enjoy.  This guys drops some fun stuff. Much better than me, who dropped my debit card at the bar and left it there.  D’oh!   Regardless, a great time was had by all, one would hope….

Sunday: Sleeping day.  Looks at bank account…glad I only spent $20 this week.  Time to get back to work, or something.

Monday: Writing about it all on pirated electrons, and doing some more editing on ye olde Book…which is on sale now…

UPDATE:  I wear this black bracelt (currently with a peace sign) around my right wrist.  I do this to remind myself that no matter how bad it is for me, it’s worst for someone else (RIGHT NOW) and I should keep my whining to a minimum and my attitude pointed in the direction I want to go.

That being said, I’m glad I wasn’t in Australia this week.

A Bit or Twenty About My Political Views

[this is an excerpt from a private conversation with a friend, who wish to remail anonymous, I think]

This is a much more civilzed conversation, but I really do prefer to have these conversations in public, as, you know…I’m a struggling writer. Really struggling.

To summarize…I’m not a Democrat and don’t follow their agenda. I saw Obama admitted a mistake with Dashle, which is why I like Obama. Bush couldn’t think of a mistake he made after four years…which was a sad joke.

I think both Cavuto and Olbermann are loud mouthed windbags who treat politics like college football. Cavuto is damn near retarded and Olbermann is a pompous windbag.

I enjoy watching and responding to, the Sunday morning talkers. NPR is one of the better sources of info. I usually scan Google News, which is run by an AI and then research from there to do my writing.

I don’t think News and Opinion should be mixed, which is why I think Fox, MSNBC, CNN, etc. are a joke. Cronkite could say more with the raise of an eyebrow than most of these modern schlubs can say with a ten minute rant. All of them are first and foremost a BUSINESS and in the media game to make money. They are not after Truth, at all, they go after ratings, which is why they suck.

I blame Bush and Cheney for making a series of huge strategic blunders that pushed our country to bankruptcy. That was the goal of AQ, BTW, to bankrupt the country. It worked. Bush is an anti-intellectual fool who picked party over principle again and again and again. He picked image over substance and should be in jail for endorsing and pushing torture.

Morals are still important. 9/11 didn’t change that. We’ve killed tens, if not hundred of thousands of innocent people in response. That, I feel, is very immoral.

I’m against torture because I have friends in the military. I also believe in the Golden Rule, as it has been “discovered” by every major religion on the planet. If one endorses torture for others, they endorse it for their friends. I don’t want anyone tortured and think there are much better ways to get information. Study how we “interrogated” German and Japanese Generals during WWII for some good examples.

I can, and have, sat down with people, been honest with them, and have had them telling me their secrets in under 20 minutes. Torture only makes people tell their torturers what the tortoree thinks their torturers want to hear. It’s not a good avenue to get at the truth. It’s torture, and it’s wrong. No matter who does it. Jack Bauer is a fictional character and a number of lecturers at the U.S. War College had to make a public statement about it, because of bunch of keyboard commandos think we should torture more people.

It won’t work, and you also might want to read up on the Japanese we executed for war crimes after they water-boarded Americans. It’s just not right. We’ll have to agree to disagree on that one.

As Martin Luther King said, “An injustice anywhere is an injustice everywhere.” He got assassinated for that view.

I’m not a big fan of Clinton. He sold his soul to be President. Watch, or read “Primary Colors” to see how that worked.

I’m currently reading McClellen’s book on Bush, and consider it to be one of the more accurate readings on what went on in that White House.

I’ve also read two of Obama’s books, and consider him to be a very intelligent, very well read, and very good leader. I don’t agree with the Limbaughian traitorous stance that seems to be dominating the GOP. I also think “Joe the Plumber” is a tard and have written extensively about him.

I’m curious about your view of Islam, which I have a great deal of respect for, and am also critical of in my book.

BTW, would you like to buy a book? I hate to give my writings aways for free to people, as I believe them to have real value. I am an independent thinker, and wish to stay that way.

Regardless, I hope this finds you well. And I VERY MUCH appreciate the more respectful tone this conversation now has.

Peace,
-Roy

The White Russian, The Dude’s Favorite Drink

The following is a conversation about a girl I met in the final moments of 2008 {the white “Russian”.  She mentioned a passion for Russian literature, and that’s how I remember her.}.  I gave her my card, but I’m not sure if she’ll call.  She is a quiet girl.

I’ll be playing the role of “the Dude.”  A friend of mine will be playing a dead queen,  Queen Elizabeth of England.  [I “talk” to dead people some times, and yes, I can “see” them too.]

To continue…

[Roy lamenting about the girl who won’t call.  The white “Russian”.  The Dude’s favorite drink. We pick up the conversation, already in progress… ]

Continue reading

What to Expect in the Coming Year

I just ran across a nice rant about what needs to change if we want to fix our “economy.”

It’s what I call our “efficiency” but looking at it like a clusterfuck is a good way to go…

This guy gets it.

The minority reality (let’s call it The Long Emergency) says that it is necessary to make radically new arrangements for daily life and rather soon. It says that a campaign to sustain the unsustainable will amount to a tragic squandering of our dwindling resources. It says that the “consumer” era of economics is over, that suburbia will lose its value, that the automobile will be a diminishing presence in daily life, that the major systems we’ve come to rely on will founder, and that the transition between where we are now and where we are going is apt to be tumultuous.

My own view is obviously the one called The Long Emergency.

Since the change it proposes is so severe, it naturally generates exactly the kind of cognitive dissonance that paradoxically reinforces the Status Quo view, especially the deep wishes associated with saving all the familiar, comfortable trappings of life as we have known it. The dialectic between the two realities can’t be sorted out between the stupid and the bright, or even the altruistic and the selfish. The various tech industries are full of MIT-certified, high-achiever Status Quo techno-triumphalists who are convinced that electric cars or diesel-flavored algae excreta will save suburbia, the three thousand mile Caesar salad, and the theme park vacation. The environmental movement, especially at the elite levels found in places like Aspen, is full of Harvard graduates who believe that all the drive-in espresso stations in America can be run on a combination of solar and wind power. I quarrel with these people incessantly. It seems especially tragic to me that some of the brightest people I meet are bent on mounting the tragic campaign to sustain the unsustainable in one way or another. But I have long maintained that life is essentially tragic in the sense that history won’t care if we succeed or fail at carrying on the project of civilization.

[see this post for the “majority” view, which needs to change soon.]

And the guy is write, “history” doesn’t care about us.  If we leave this planet, we’ll be nothing but a footnote for someone else to read.

I do, however, disagree with his “Dow 4000” prediction.  Although I could be wrong about that.

I’m Still Trying to Come Up With a Title for My Book

I just thought of another good one, “Philosophy is an Action.”

If anyone has any suggestions, please let me know.  I’ve already written down some predictions of what people will think of it, and I want to check my work.

Joel, you first.  🙂

The 1st Book Is Going to Be 50,000 Words Long

I like the number 50.

A comment on Facebook is 1000 characters long, so I’ve been training my ability to be efficient.

So, 50 comments is about a book, right? [UPDATE:  C’mon, I need somebody to check my math.  My book isn’t going to be 50,000 characters long (it went past that in the first week) but 50,000 word words and 50,000 picture words.  Sorry for the confusion.]

50 is one of my favorite numbers.

On the number scale I try and introduce in Chapter 2 of the book, it is “1” on the scale of 1-100 (relatively, when 1=0 and 100=infinity) .

I really like that number.

And I think I’m going to limit it to 100 footnotes.

football

This is all for Version 1 (V1). I figure I’ll have to expand it later but that’s the limit, 50,000 words in month.

{note: this is to give me a “stopping point”. I’m going to write about 56 or 60 and then edit it down by Stephen King’s Recommended 10%. Since I actually want to sell this one, I followed his story telling advice. I think he’s pretty good at it.}

Oh, and pictures don’t count as words.  Well, they count as 1000 words, so maybe, if I can find the right publisher for a 100,000 word “memoir(e)” book, I’ll include the pics.  If I do self-publishing lulu route, including the pictures would make the book rather expensive (like in the $100 range).

Hmmmm, that give me an idea….

The First Two Chapters Are Up

As mentioned a little while back, I am putting the blog on hold and writing a book.

O.k. I didn’t do such a good job of that (as the latest posts can testify) but that hasn’t stopped the book from coming along nicely.

They can read be read here.

I’d love to get some feedback on what I’ve done so far.  There is contact information in that post as well, if anyone wants more information.

The most of the book I am going to post online for free is the first three chapters (and very few graphs, and no appendices, which is where the pudding is, so to speak).  I am currently going between editing and writing (editing takes a lot longer).

I’ve always been a fan of the shareware model for software distribution and something of a fan of the street performer protocol as a way to make money and give stuff away at the same time.  That’s the only reason for the tease and, quite frankly, it’s high time I tried to sell a bit of my writing rather than just giving it away for free, as I have done for a good long while now.

Thanks, and I hope you enjoy it!

Steve Jobs is Dying

This is a really sad day.  Not that Steve is dead yet, but having some personal history and knowledge of pancreatic cancer, it’s not a good sign that he isn’t speaking at Macworld.

One of the first computers I ever used was one he (and his nerd buddy, Steve Wozniak) designed and sold.  It was a good machine and if not for Mr. Jobs and Mr. Wozniak, I wouldn’t be the person I am today.

Look, I don’t want to be debbie downer, but all the legions of Mac faithful need to be prepared.  The day is coming soon when one of the more powerful reality field distorters is going to leave us forever.  Please, be prepared.

And pay homage if you can, before he wanders off into that good night.

NOTE: Apple will keep this as quiet as possible for as long as possible (again) as their stock price and value as a company will plummet with his passing.

UPDATE: Apple has officially canceled Christmas…

CUPERTINO, California—December 16, 2008—Apple® today announced that this is the last year for Christmas. Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Product Marketing, spoke at a joint press conference held with Santa Claus at the North Pole this morning. He announced: “Apple has been honored to work with the North Pole the last several years to make Christmas possible, however, we have decided together that this is the last year for Christmas.”

Apple is reaching more people in more ways than ever before, so like many companies, Christmas has become a very minor part of how Apple reaches its customers. The increasing popularity of Apple’s Retail Stores, which more than 3.5 million people visit every week, and the Apple.com website enable Apple to directly reach more than a hundred million customers around the world in innovative new ways, throughout the year.

[full press release]

BTW, the only one I’ve seen so far to say this isn’t about a particular organ going bad in Jobs’ abdomen is…wait for it…quoting Apple PR flacks.  The real ones, not the parody above.

Industry analyst types have thrown out a few explanations, many focused on Steve Jobs’ yielding the keynote stage on such short notice. For instance, EWeek’s Joe Wilcox suggested that Jobs’ health was the real reason–an issue also raised by Time’s Josh Quittner but rejected by CNBC’s Jim Goldman.

[WaPo Story]

—-

Goldman’s “reasoning:”

Also not a surprise: swirling rumors that Jobs was pulling out of the conference, the last Macworld, because of health concerns.

I can tell you that sources inside the company tell me that Jobs’ decision was more about politics than his pancreas. Sources tell me that if Jobs for some reason was unable to perform any of his responsibilities as CEO because of health reasons, which would include the Macworld keynote, I should “rest assured that the board would let me know.”

[full (of stupid) article]

You want to name those sources, or just link to them?  “Sources” in the PR department trying to keep the stock price happy do not good sources make.  Riiight, it sounds plausible that a guy who really, really gets off talking to his faithful decided that it just wasn’t fun anymore.  CNBC, the channel that oh-so-accurately predicted that we could borrow and spend forever and it would be o.k.  This is a channel that gave both Larry Kudlow (of “Big Poverty is to blame” Fame) and Jim Cramer (of “Watch TV, Get Rich” Fame) jobs.

Best Grumpy Old Man Post of the Day

Quite a bit surprised by this one. It’s tough to find the right line in a rant like this, but GOM does a very good job.

I can’t vouch for his other work, but this one is very well done.   Personally I think Obama is being practical in how to draw down U.S. forces in Iraq.  I’m fairly certain he understands that the “surge stragety” for Iraq won’t pay dividends in Afghanistan, and will be settling on another strategy to try and turn the tide in that country.

Oh, and here’s the shoe incident he mentioned…

I wonder if we could all head to the White House and throw our shoes at it. I wonder if Bush would get it then.

That’s probably the first thing I’m going to do once they dedicate his library in my home town (he just bought a house down the street from me).

For some reason that might do the trick, and I think he would finally get it….so….who’s up for a quick trip to D.C.?

I’m fairly certain Cheney wouldn’t get it.  He would either ignore it or order everyone shot…in the face.

A bit of cultural explanation, via the BBC.

Around the Arab world, if you want to escalate a situation, by saying for example “I’m going to thump you”, add the words “with a shoe” and you’re adding serious insult to the threat of possible injury.

It’s that cultural significance that has added real sting to the assault by an Iraqi journalist against US President George W Bush at a Baghdad news conference.

In Arab culture it’s considered rude even to display the sole of one’s shoe to a fellow human being.

Certainly, crossing one’s legs ankle-on-knee style should never be done in a public place for fear of offending the person next to you.

The sensitivity is related to the fact shoes are considered ritually unclean in the Muslim faith.

In addition to ritual ablutions before prayer, Muslims must take off their shoes to pray, and wearing shoes inside a mosque is forbidden.

There’s a lot of dust in the Middle East, you see, and it gets everywhere…and a lot of camels and other livestock…it’s a cultural tradition with a good bit of common sense behind it, when you think about it.