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In the Leigh of the Storm

“Because we all share an identical need for love, it is possible to feel that anybody we meet, in whatever circumstances, is a brother or sister. No matter how new the face or how different the dress or behavior, there is no significant division between us and other people. It is foolish to dwell on basic differences, because our basic natures are the same.” — Dalai Lama So our little Occupy group met with Colorado Springs City Council member Tim Leigh the other night. He came to meet us at our regular haunt, graciously provided by independent local business the Cafe Corto. Tim is an affable dude, and our meeting seemed to go well, at least in the sense that we were able to develop a rapport with him and come away with a sense of friendliness, if not friendship. Tim is a self-described member of the 1%, an appellation that derives from specific statistics involving wealth which has acquired connotations as a result of Occupy that Tim may not be so quick to embrace. Fact is, i really don't know enough about the guy to decide for myself whether or not he deserves application of the darker connotations or not. The group at the meeting is as diverse as any formed in October's Occupy crucible, and as has been characteristic of the movement in general, each in attendance holds individual interpretations of just what Occupy is, and what we mean to accomplish. Good ol' Thomas, in the course of his regular series of uncontrolled and only marginally civil outbursts, vehemently denied we constitute a "movement." Others sought mostly to find little political fulcra with which to pry at Tim's scales, (in case he's a shape-shifting alien, i suppose). None of this was surprising--we are a group dedicated to disruption of the entrenched, monied status quo, working within a rough framework of fairly aggressive expression worldwide, if nothing else. Tim weathered the various clods of dirt whipped up by the wind as one might expect from either a politician, which label he denies, or a very rich real estate wheeler-dealer, which would be ludicrous to attempt to gainsay. I don't have the motivation to dig up lots of facts about Tim Leigh's business dealings, but we know well enough that his name is on an awful lot of buildings around town, and he lives on a tidy and isolated landscaped lot up on the Mesa, where the houses are all overpriced, the better to keep the riff-raff away. His house is almost certainly bigger than yours. No one is apt to be shocked by those minor revelations. In fact, his now predictable assertions to be "in the same boat" as we would be fairly ludicrous to the casual observer, except that i think he's right on the money with that one, though perhaps not as he sees it. Thomas asserts that we are an issue-driven--something not a movement--and he's right about issues, at least in part. Tim is himself in a

Tea Partying with the Freak Brothers

Whew! These Occupy posts are far more difficult to pry from myself than their predecessors; the hands-on mechanics of putting the earlier stuff into practice in the present world, amongst the isolated pools of individuated consciousness we humans represent, each with his or her own vision of the whole, has been at the very least disorienting. I've lately revived an old motto i swiped from the good people at Oat Willie's down in Austin, Texas: Onward Through the Fog! How odd is it that i've recently connected with some folks that hark back to that place in ways that are deeply surreal. Oat Willie's and Fat Freddie will seem to be completely out of place in this bit, in which i mean to address the notion of cooperation amongst disparate factions, but not permanently i hope. By the end of this post, i hope to connect Occupy, The Tea Party, disparate passions, and yes, Hippies. It will be necessary to engage in some relatively surreal thinking. Last night on a new Facebook page, "UNITE: OCCUPY," (cap lock and all), i got into a conversation about this stuff started by a guy that asked whether anyone thought a joint event between Occupiers and Tea Partiers might be possible. Sure, i said, our Colorado Springs group had lots of Tea Partiers among its earliest enthusiasts, and although many have pulled away, there still exists a close association with many that veer sharply toward the Te Party camp, especially among Ron Paul supporters. The common ground Occupy shares with the Tea Party, at least t a grass root level, is substantial. There can be no doubt of the equally substantial differences. I suspect that it would take some pretty serious ideological barnstorming to bring the two camps together, but nothing prevents the groups from at least tentative discussion to find commonalities. Tonight our Occupy group staged a talk by Tea Party stalwart, Constitutionalist Mike Holler. Mike seemed for all appearances to be an earnest and well-versed supporter of Constitutional "fundamentalism," if you will. He peppered his talk with lots of my favorite quotes from my favorite founding fathers. He got a little testy about the revisionist history his kids bring home from college early on--perhaps indicative of one point of separation between Occupiers and Tea Partiers. Some of those are important. Occupy is international, where the Tea Party can display degrees of jingoism. I, personally, respect the earnest efforts of our Enlightenment founders, but recognize that they were flawed, and aver that their document was dated by racist, sexist, and elitist provisions and thinking that they might be excused from by noting their temporal milieu. We don't have the same luxury. Occupy is legitimately grass root, supported by sweat and blood more than funded, where TP is, or at least became very quickly corporately funded "astroturf," disingenuously proffering libertarian ideals as a smoke screen for corporate license to plunder. Occupiers are in my experience far more diverse than Tea Partiers. Socialist and Anarchist Occupiers

The Last Girl Scout

Yesterday marked an invigorating shift for me.   I've been beset by the common malady among Occupiers, wherein the sheer weight of the task at hand and the sly, evasive Jung Fu practiced by the adherents of the Darkness has been a bit stifling. Given the way the City Court in Colorado springs has been summarily dismissing cases arising from the local Occupation, i genuinely feared they would simply drop my camping ticket as a way to sweep the whole business under their now incredibly lumpy rug. After all, when Nic G. was arrested for setting up an occupation at City Hall, his case was summarily dismissed for "lack of evidence." Nic, Michael, and Kristie then drove to the police station to retrieve the three carloads of evidence they had confiscated and were storing there. It seems likely that the real reason the case was dropped was the lack of any legitimate crime. Nic has reported that none of the cops on the scene for his incident had any clue what they were doing. In fact they are recorded by their own equipment responding with befuddlement when asked for what he was being arrested. No shit. "What am I being arrested for; what are the charges?" "We don't know." Apparently even our city's lawyers aren't stupid enough to take that one, though it may well have been simply a harassment strategy. If so, its effectiveness is as yet undetermined. No one has set up any tables or anything at City Hall since, but we've been busy, many of us simply finding ways to avoid freezing to death. The idea is hardly off the table though, one might say. Some weeks back we contacted the National Lawyers' Guild office in Denver and Chuck Nadler from that office sent out a mass email, blah, blah, blah, and i was put in touch with local attorney Patty Perello. Perello had presented difficulty to connect, and in the weeks leading to the rescheduled pre-trial conference yesterday, i developed a sense that she may be of a mind to steer the procedure toward the simplest solution and try to get the charges dropped on technicalities or to persuade me to take one of the cheesy deals the city attorney offered. I was pleasantly disabused of my unwarranted impression when we finally met, 10 minutes past the scheduled moment for the conference to start. We spoke hurriedly for a few minutes about more or less unrelated topics before they called my name and Perello motioned for me to wait while she conferred in the inner sanctum of banal constitutional deconstruction to be found at any courtroom. I held my previous view at this point, that Perello was likely not so different from other overworked and over-avaricious solicitors with whom i'd had previous experience. When she reappeared with not one but two potential lame-ass deals posited by the city, i knew the moment was at hand. "So," i say, bracing for the worst, "just how deep into this pond do you

Hey Mike!

After last week, it seemed this entry would be a pep talk for disheartened Colorado Springs Occupiers. Instead it seems it will need to be my own mind meandering around in an attempt to make sense of the new dynamic rising from the ashes of the original manifestation we had going here, which has surely been destroyed. It feels something like a kids cabin make of Lincoln Logs or something after he knocks it over to build something else. It's been over a week since the City shut our permit down and confiscated our ramshackle, wind-ragged tents down at Acacia Park. After a few days of curious and somewhat disconcerting quiet, Occupiers in Colorado Springs are reconnected, reinvigorated, and in many cases really pissed off. Yesterday a contingency of us made our way to the old Venetucci Farm south of CSprings to harass Colorado's Gov. Hickenlooper at the groundbreaking ceremony for a solar garden project of the city's publicly owned utilities company. About 20 Occupiers of Colorado Springs mic-checked the governor and briefly disrupted the speechifying before a group that was made largely of Occupy's natural allies, raising the ire of some attendees, but most assuredly reminding Hickenlooper that he won't be allowed to ignore the movement simply by leaving Denver. Some Occupiers present , including i, were ambivalent about our project. Hickenlooper is something of a liberal darling, having supported projects like the SunShare solar garden in the past, and the crowd at the event was populated by many of Colorado Springs's "liberal" elite. The business of interrupting at these proceedings is a little sticky, and may have cost some in support for Occupy among this crowd. On the other hand, some of the issues addressed by Occupy were aptly illustrated within the very brief span of our attendance. Jerry Forte, who wrangles close to $300,000 a year for himself without considering bonuses as CEO of Colorado Springs Utilities, spent a few smooth-talking minutes going on about how cool the city's utility non-profit is, noting the great advance the two or three dozen solar panels undergoing installation at Venetucci Farm toward his goal of deriving 20% of city power from renewable resources by 2020 represents. Gee whiz! At today's use rates, by 2020, the world's inhabitants, especially in the U.S., will be stabbing one another over firewood if we can survive the toxic byproducts of the petroleum industry, or the potentially nuclear wars we are preparing for our next trick in the Middle East. Hmm--wonder what gas prices will look like if the Levant and its environs are sealed under a "sea of glass." Forte also sits on the board at the local branch of the United Way, where Bob Holmes's Homeward Pikes Peak brought in around $650,000 last year, and still can't figure out how to house or manage the low-ball ,(and variable), estimate of around 1,100 homeless residents in Colorado Springs. Hickenlooper, a million dollar winner in the American sweepstakes who loves to project an aw-shucks, up-by-the-bootstrap, populist kind of

City Hall of Mirrors

As cities around the US bully Occupy groups around on park verges and college campuses, we here in Colorado Springs have not remained unscathed. Monday morning saw our friendly neighborhood "Homeless Outreach Team," (HOT), and a much less friendly contingent from the city's code enforcement office dismantle the previously permitted Occupy site at Acacia Park in downtown Colorado Springs. A surprisingly good-sized group materialized after midnight to vocally express displeasure at the actions of the city as rendered by the police and what appeared to be a rather callous batch of contracted laborers hired to accomplish the actual dismantling. No one got beat up or gassed. The permit surrounding which had developed controversy in our little microcosm is gone and we will now be required to redefine, restructure, and proceed without it. Personally, i feel it to be a good riddance even though we here in Colorado Springs seem to be experiencing a bit of disorientation as a result. Dan and M.J. of the HOT team, (a redundancy, i know, but common parlance), were present for the dismantling of the tents that had been a fixture at our protest site. Some 50 or so protesters managed to flood the scene, even at the late hour of the event. Despite the relative peace between authorities and Occupiers here, the police present were fully prepared to inflict harm if we protesters had engaged in any form other than the sometimes obnoxious yelling. The whole scene, not unlike other aspects of our unusual local manifestation of the Movement, produced and continues to produce a sense of extreme ambiguity in my own psyche. I like to think of Dan and M.J. as friends, at least in a provisional sense, but i have no choice but to acknowledge that none of my closest friends would ever even think of putting me in jail or beating me up, even if i piss them off. Tuesday a fairly large group of Occupiers attended a City Council meeting with a previously established agenda, none of which was to address Occupy directly, though it would be difficult to conjure a government meeting with an agenda that pertained to no issue encompassed by Occupy at this juncture. My own experience at the council meeting felt very much like an exercise in futility. A gentleman preceded us Occupiers with a request to restore city funding to his non-profit that helps supply transportation to disabled city residents. As the council and mayor did with our objections next, they seemed to tolerate the man's speech and then perfunctorily ignore it. No indication of interest or intention to act was in evidence. Aimee Cox, serving as some sort of city liaison, distributed a few sheets describing the city's appeal process in a few sentences. The remainder of the council meeting involved investment strategy and plans to extract additional money from residents in the form of utility rate hikes. The minutiae to all this wrangling is just about as pointless to describe as anything i can picture. The

African-American Voice

Occupy! is a movement that has arisen "in solidarity to express a feeling of mass injustice." It's a phenomenon, perhaps more that a movement. The state of the world, and of the human race has grown so imbalanced, so deeply dysfunctional, so painfully self-absorbed by malign tendencies that suddenly we humans passed a threshold beyond which our tolerance could not continue. So we spilled out into the street to demand attention to the aggressive imbalances we're all forced to live with every day, be they economic, racial, nationalistic, religious--the nature of these distinctions is far less important than our weariness of the game we're caught up in involving the necessity to grind down our fellows in order to keep our own heads above water. We Occupiers are as diverse as the face of the entirety of humanity. And we're tired of fighting a losing battle against the self-centered ideology gripping so many of the world's institutions and interaction. We've come together to do something about it , even before we have any clue just what to do. We American Occupiers are coming at this thing within our established framework as a nation committed to law and Constitution, and struggling to absorb the idea that Occupy is not an American phenomenon, even though it stems from ideas we've been accustomed to supporting as Americans for a long time. We're weary of the gap between our ideals, the underlying philosophies of equanimity expressed in our founding documents, and our collective expression in the real world. We've come together, now, to splay all our discontent out in the open, to figure out our commonalities, and to demand both a reckoning and a rectification. We Occupiers are convinced that the time has come, that we Humans stand at a crossroad in our history, and that we must finally learn to live cooperatively, or lose our place in the history of a small planet in a cosmic sea....

The Great American Hero

America lives in the heart of every man everywhere who wishes to find a region where he will be free to work out his destiny as he chooses. --Woodrow Wilson Our understanding of history shapes our perception of the present, and informs our actions in the moment. This post, for example, is given additional flesh by the eviction of Occupiers from Zuccotti Park in Lower Manhattan last night by forces directed by 4.0 × 10-8 percenter Michael Bloomberg, one of the richest guys in the USA, and probably in accord with Federal direction. Zuccotti Park is a "Privately Owned Public Space," (POPS), and that odd status has no doubt been notable in current discourse. Across the USA and elsewhere, including here in Colorado Springs, governments at various levels have utilized no-camping ordinances and public park hours to harrass Occupiers, often to such extremes as to soundly demonstrate some of the protesters' most salient points. So what is the history of "property," and how does it pertain to the Occupy Movement? We citizens of the USA are virtually without foundation where historical discussion is concered, unless we educate ourselves beyond the standard drivel so ineptly foisted in our direction by teachers bound by our disastrously faltering public indoctrination system, mislabeled "education." We learn a sanitized verion of our own history, and the European history from which ours so largely derives, focused on patriotic and Euro-centric hero-worship rather than on the genuine and controversial currents that have effected societal changes at various junctures in world history. We often become enraged when these inane presumptions are questioned, as i have personally witnessed when service veterans have come unglued when protesters suggested they ought not to have been engaged in foriegn adventurism for resources, or when Occupiers have come near to blows over rights or priveleges the foundations for which they often demonstrate but scanty comprehension. The story of Christopher Columbus and his noble and brave explorations of a frightening unknown quantity for the lofty purpose of betterment of the human condition, followed immediately by even more noble American colonists' successful efforts to throw off the shackles of monarchical tyranny culminating in the sacrosanct US Constitution is ingrained in our collective psyche like a Freudian complex. The quote from the nearly deified US President Woodrow Wilson at the top of this page is meant to illustrate this phenomenon. Wilson said some things that seemed to spring from a font of humanity, but he was demonstrably a heinous racist and an elitist, encouraging reestablishment of the KKK, turning US finances over to the Federal Reserve, propagating celebrated treaties he subsequently ignored, and intrepidly belittling any expressor of opinion contrary to his own, among other public sins. Columbus filled his own journals with tales of religiously inspired avarice as he gleefully reported his intent, and execution of his plan to conquer the lands and subjugate the peoples he encountered. The US Constitution, while serving to codify some dignified and egalitarian principles, was still seen as some as an

Birth Pains

Apologies to readers not at hand or interested so deeply in Colorado Springs's silly affairs.   Last night , it appears more cops were called in to arrest or press charges against one of our own, Jack Semple, by one of our own, the identity of which latter individual seems muddled to some extent. It's simple enough to determine that Jason W. and Kristie W. are the only individuals that have any sort of legitimacy, however dubious, for cop-calling, but we all know from experience that the cops possess a grasp of nuances like this one below a genuinely operable threshold. Some have been bandying about terms like "tyranny," "hater'" and other such inflammations. I'll note that, though Jack and Jason will serve as specific personifications for this piece, others have made alignments according to the differences described. More than one observer has noted the inanity of all this, both from here in Colorado Springs, and from afar. Holy mackerel. Our unique, permitted status has presented problems left to fate at other Occupy locations. Jack Semple has, no doubt, insisted on performing behaviors of at least somewhat scurrilous foundation. To the best of my knowledge, no "rules," or even "guidelines" have been adopted by the overall group "Occupy Colorado Springs, " which i must insist on noting to be separate by definition if not in spirit from "Occupy Colorado Springs," the permitted entity. Last Thursday, (9 Nov), a rather large and representative group of us agreed to adjust wording in our set of rules to reflect their nature as guidelines. Neither rules nor guidelines have been accepted by any consensus, to my knowledge. Jason has proffered the notion that other groups are more stringent in enforcement actions than ours has been, though no set of guidelines for either enforcement or encouragement have been adopted. Most of the sets of guidelines i have been able to dredge up from other sites online have been heavy on terms like"respect," and "mindfulness." Jason's assertions that "the group" reached a consensus on the permit are unfounded, which i know because i myself with others in agreement objected to the permit on the grounds that the law it was meant to skirt is bad in the first place. There was and remains a group of like opinion in opposition to supporters of the permit--a predictable scenario, in light of the hasty disregard for consensus building at the start. Jack has, in fact, "pushed the envelope" in his approaches both in GAs and in independent action, as have other group members, including at times, me. Jason has also pushed envelopes, and though his responsibility is unclear at certain points, he has it seems signed tickets and pressed charges in the two incidents involving mavericks in "his" tents. No small number of OCS participants have observed the detrimental effect of the behavior of both Jack and Jason. Jack has stubbornly insisted on proceeding without consensus, and given the leaderless, undefined nature of Occupy! worldwide and here, no real authority

Fear and Loathing in Colorado Springs

Those readers following the Occupy! Movement in its many forms around the world and in Colorado Springs will be glad to hear that Tuesday culminated a difficult week for us here with a resolution of many contentious issues, and an overall commitment to unity.   The subject matter behind this particular post is closely associated with the Movement in general, but it's more a humanity thing than an Occupy thing, overall. I hope i can get the associations to make sense, and that readers will restrain themselves from developing the erroneous notion that this is meant to be a pitch for some sort of religion. It's not. I went to the Municipal Court in Colorado Springs to enter a plea of "not guilty" to the charge of camping on public property because of actions executed as a part of Occupy! Actually, i was camping on public property, to put it quite plainly, and the idea behind the plea is that the action does not engender guilt even if it violates a silly and badly unAmerican, (read, "oppressive," if we've become a little unrecognizable in this regard), statute. A couple dozen supporters made it to the courtroom with me, and raised enough ruckus to get Municipal Judge Spottswood W. H. Williams to threaten them all with contempt charges. The whole thing was kind of a lot of fun, really. Made me feel a little like Hoffman or Hayden, in a much smaller sense. There comes a first time for everything, and this was my first visit to a courtroom during which i was able to feel utterly unencumbered by the dark nature of my own action that had led me there. My deepest thanks to all the OCS members and especially Dennis Apuan, who put his political credibility on the line to stand with us, and brought a good deal of patriotic weight to the room as State Rep for the fine soldiers of Fort Carson. The hearing was only that, after all, and after entering the plea, we scheduled a pre-trial conference with the City Attorney, for 22 Nov, at which a government lawyer will make me an offer i'll most assuredly refuse and we'll schedule a jury trial. I'll keep you news hounds posted as things progress. The point to this post, though, is an underlying root to the no-camping ordinance, as well as to most of the woes of the day: The Fear. Most of us don't acknowledge the Fear because, well, it's scary. Instead we get angry, or attempt to maneuver ourselves into a position to control uncontrollable factors like society or competitive economies. We eschew cooperation because we're afraid of our fellows. We make assumptions about others' behavior and how it will effect us. We bewail the corruption of society, and begin looking over our shoulders for the punishment of God, or black-clad mercenaries coming over the horizon to herd us into frigid winter FEMA camps. We worry about hunger, poverty, inglorious death. We develop elaborate political systems and foment revolution in

Ye Aulde Memoir

Another old piece. These stories are distorted by romanticized memory, at times, and others likely remember them differently. I by no means intend to insult any of the real persons that lived through this stuff with a cavalier treatment of tender recollections, or harsh description of personalities or actions. Each of us always did exactly what seemed to be exactly the right things to do at the time. And there survives much, much love, which has grown and developed like it always does, in ways we never see coming. I'm not putting these old ones up because i'm too lazy to write new. I'll have one of those next--but some of this old stuff fits. Hope you like it. 11 May 2009 One day during the summer of 1980 my brother David was in the hospital at Case Western Reserve University for yet another open-heart surgery. The scene that day was dramatic I suppose, but for our family at the time, it was in many ways just another day. The state of the relationships between us had come to the condition that existed then because each and every incident that had occurred in the history of the Universe had added to that cumulative point. The way it came together then could have been viewed as tragic, I suppose, but we never noticed. I don’t even remember how I got the news that this particular episode was approaching. David’s surgery that year was one of many—so many, in fact, that by now surgeons and academics had written papers on his congenital condition, and even given it a polysyllabic title. His lead surgeon, a Dr. Ankeny as I recall, had once claimed that he had “learned more from David Bass than fourteen years of medical school.” We four siblings had in effect grown up in the hospital, with the constant potential for death in attendance on a daily basis. Many years would pass between that summer and the moment I decided any of this was applicable to self-reflection, and the sweltering summer afternoon was as present and imminently experiential as any other I lived through during that period. Our family seemed done that year. I had been out of the picture for over a year. Dad had left soon after, leaving a sour tinge in the air with those remaining, though I never blamed him. When David queued up for one more death-defying, experimental, split-chest open-heart surgery, Dad came back to Cleveland from Florida to put in an obligatory appearance. Here was a meeting that defied conventional description. Dave, the least guilty of all our immediate family, had been deeply affected by Dad’s exit from the filial stage earlier that year. I hadn’t seen, or even spoken to Dad for well over a year, nor could our interactions prior to then be described as warm and supportive. Outnumbered by angry or indifferent family members, and perhaps less acclimated to hospitals as the rest of us, Dad was way out of his simpler, down-to-earth element. I showed up unannounced,

George Who?

This is a paper from some time ago, well prior to the advent of Occupy events. Henry George wrote from a sensibility one rarely finds expressed so explicitly today. The modern reader should note that Christian underpinnings in no way disrupt either the reasoned logic or the passionate humanity behind George's arguments. Follow the links! Many Occupiers have promoted education, the deeper aspects of which are rarely available in 3 page tracts.... For Eric Stephenson 16 February 2009 George Who? It seems peculiar that in 2009 no one has heard of Henry George, if only for the fact that during his prime a hundred years past his was easily one of the most recognizable names on Earth. Just a journalist really, George’s hardscrabble upbringing, his early experience in the business world, and maybe just a little OCD inspired him to craft an entirely new approach to economic theory. Its publication very quickly garnered him international acclaim, respect, and supportive friendship from many of the greatest figures of his day. Many, encountering his work for the first time today, would no doubt label him a Commie, particularly given that George’s work followed Marx and Engels’ by three decades. This misinterprets George. His thinking split the difference between Adam Smith and the Communist theorists in many ways, sharing common ground with both camps but firmly establishing his own territory. His work deserves a second reading. George was born in Philadelphia, September, 1839, to a family headed by a hardworking but low-budget printer. By providing the Church cut-rate printing services, George’s devout father enabled Henry to garner a relatively high-standard primary education from the Episcopal Academy. He left home after high-school seeking his own way, and after a brief period of adventuring, found himself in San Francisco where he joined the Printer’s Union, following in his father’s footsteps after all. George lived a poor man’s life--same as any tradesman at the height of the Robber Barons’ power--until an editor at the San Francisco Times came across a piece he had written and left lying around. He accepted an offered staff writing position at $50 a week, which seemed a princely amount compared with his father’s $800 a year. He traveled quite a bit for the Times, and in 1868 on assignment in New York City first encountered the squalid conditions surrounding and adjoining vaunted islands of luxury and power that would inform and undergird his writing for the rest of his life. Having gained considerable respect as a newsman and a fair amount of seed-money, George and a partner, William Hinton, established the San Francisco Evening Post in 1871. George unabashedly used the paper as a human rights platform until 1877, when, some say, powerful railroad interests against whom he had

All in

When i first set out to write this blog i had no intention of writing about geopolitics, or anything any bigger than my own little world, or to develop any sort of readership at all, let alone to kick up international interest. Who knew? Since the time i started, Adbuster's Occupy movement has overtaken the whole world and i've become a part of it, along with apparently millions of fellow humans dissatisfied with aspects of the concentric and overlapping political systems that govern and control the minutiae of our daily lives. Occupy has struck a chord that resonates well beyond what seems to have been its original intent as well. Adbuster asserts in its campaign web-page opener that, "we vow to end the monied corruption of our democracy," speaking, one assumes of U.S. democracy, even though Adbusters is a Canadian publication founded by Kalle Lasn, an Estonian. Adbusters itself claims to be a, "global network of culture jammers and creatives," and that their Occupy is, "[i]nspired by the Egyptian Tahrir Square uprising and the Spanish acampadas." One should note that Adbusters is a non-profit organization with aspirations and effect well beyond the confines of the magazine at its core. Many of my dear intrepid friends struggle mightily with the unavoidable nature of the movement in which we all participate. Occupy Colorado Springs, (OCS), has garnered a fair amount of attention both because of its early acquisition of a city permit to camp on the sidewalk, and for its fragmentary infighting. Strong personalities have clashed fairly spectacularly for what scale we're dealing with here, and precisely the same arguments are on display at Occupy web-pages all over the U.S., as well as abroad. Here, many patriotic, nationally oriented players have concentrated on addressing the U.S. Constitution and the influence of corporate interests in Washington, D.C. politics. Others have been caught up in causes of personal concern as the "focus" of the overall movement has grown more and more diffuse. The bickering and difficulty in reaching consensus has been frustrating but, i suggest, not unhealthy or out of place. Adbusters, following ques from the Middle East and Spain, deliberately set off a "leaderless" movement, and has fastidiously avoided taking hold of any sort of control of what has developed since, refusing even media interviews for fear of exercising undue influence. Occupy remains a leaderless movement. Various groups and individuals have issued lists of demands; the one linked there, "is representative of those participating on this [particular 'Occupy Wall Street' Facebook] page." We Occupiers have much common ground, which has served well to bring us all together, and will continue to serve as we gather to discuss and bicker over issues and particulars. There is plenty to differentiate amongst us as well, on individual and other categorical bases, but we have recognized, more or less, an essential humanity that has us willing to stand in freezing temperatures if we live in the northern hemisphere, and subject ourselves to the slow, often painful process of

Denver Daze

Occupy Colorado Springs is and has been a relatively staid affair. Our biggest marches have drawn maybe 200 participants, and the street corner has been generally host to small crowds and mostly friendly or indifferent passers by. Visits from police have been just that--visits, rather than assaults, even when the HOTT Team came to arrest me early in the morning on 18 October, and the intrepid Camping Jack on two more recent occasions. We had to take steps to force them to make my arrest. Many of the core participants at Acacia Park have never been involved in any sort of political processes at all, let alone public protestations. So when several of our number traveled to Denver last Saturday to join a boisterous crowd of around 3,000 souls emotions were high, mixed, and complex. There can be no denying the nervous air among one van load during the trip to Civic Center Park, directly in front of the State Capitol building, on the western side. Shana expressed open fear, bless her heart, and i suspect she wasn't the only of our number of like mind. Fear was generally dispelled by the excitement of the much larger Denver crowd, though, and as we marched around downtown under clear blue unseasonably warm Colorado skies, past the Mint, the Federal Reserve Building, down the 16th St. Mall where city employees took an unscheduled break to let us pass and bewildered shoppers either stared aghast or waved and grinned in support, up 17th St. past all the towering bank centers, and finally mounting the steps at the Capitol Building in defiance of specific instruction from city and police. Throughout the march, spirits were exuberant as cooperative bullhorn operators traded various, sometimes conflicting perspectives while our horde danced and prated along the sidewalks and streets, and we arrived at the Capitol in high, expectant spirits. There had been quite a lot of friendly cops along for the march, but shortly after our arrival at the Capitol the armored legion showed up and began tactical operations to expel the somewhat rowdy crowd from its perch. I was there with my 15 year old son, so we pulled back from the danger zone when the announcement was made waving off the "unarrestable." Adin and i observed the obscure scuffling, complete with clouds of gas, from the Park as we waited for the valiant crew of absurdly comical drag queens "manning" the field kitchen to finish the "pimp-ass risotto" we later had for lunch, flavored by tear gas. The cops cleared the Capitol steps and formed a double-lined phalanx at the eastern face of the Park, at the street edge of the sidewalk directly across from the kitchen and the hastily erected camps. The kitchen crew struggled to put a specifically verboten makeshift canopy over their operation, so the police could be sure and find them. The police blocked Broadway for several blocks and pushed protesters off the street into the Park and stayed in a threatening stance

Interlude 2

Off to Acacia Park for the night, then Denver in the morning. Occupy! is fully international. We'll need to come to terms with that in our own countries, cities, minds, and act accordingly, cooperatively, if we are to truly build a thing of beauty without a ridiculous cataclysm. Continue to embrace Humanity in everyone! Cops and soldiers, bankers and beggars--all of us are just working the Gameboard as seems best to us at the time. Pull back. Breathe. Shine the Light! The Game's over. Learn to Dance!

Occupying an empty house

My friend Maureen gets frustrated with me because i keep slinging all this outlandish stuff at her, and as one might expect, she has a hard time getting it sometimes, and an even harder time imagining that any of it might be true or practical. I keep telling her that money is over, she keeps telling me that people use money for good things. I start hanging around Occupy Wall St. and its attendant movement and she feels alienated because she lives largely from Stock Exchange investments. Maureen is not the only one with this issue; a man appeared at our GA in CSpgs last week deeply troubled by the fact that we "haters" were trying to force his grandma to eat cat food because as he noted, "Wall Street", that is, the package of various stock offerings available there, is owned diffusely by grandmas and retirees, penny-pinchers and wheeler-dealers all over the world. My friend and this guy are both put off by the extremely jarring nature of the realizations at hand that have precipitated huge crowds of traffic-clotting protesters into the streets. (Actually that stranger stayed for the GA and came around, while Maureen has an injury preventing her attendance, so this is kinda for her, as well as everyone else). The issue with the money that's causing problems is closely associated with the Global nature of Occupy! and because of that, its fragmented nature. Both issues are rendered all the more discordant to many by their perceived urgency among occupiers. We want things to change right now, not after the next bullshit election cycle, but rather before we all die when the food chain collapses. Many within the movement at hand will object to what i posit here, but there really is no way around it in my own mind, so i have no choice but to put it out there. The FED, the IMF, World Bank, Bank of England, Royal Dutch, Al Rajhi, etc, etc, and their intertwined financial/military/industrial destruction machine already exist as a very solid Global beast with utterly uncontrollable and ravenous hungers. We humans are equally as Global, and Occupy! is the same. The destructive elements in this conflict as well as the creative are out of the hands of nationalistic players, and our old notions of money and its production will not save us in time. Once again, if it were gonna, it woulda. I've put this educational chart up before, and if you have no motivation to look any further then i hope you'll just go get another beer and stay out of the way. The World as we know it is a disaster, and we made it so. Don't give me that crap about global warming is caused by dinosaur farts. We've dumped more toxic shit into the ecosystem in the last century than can be said to have even existed, anywhere. If Humanity can't effect the world, like one hears on Rush, of some of those other insane programs

Legalismo

This is a direct copy of the email i sent earlier today and then copied and pasted some before it dawned on me it would be much easier and more effective to post it here. Collins is a law professor at the University of Colorado, Boulder. His referenced comment appeared in the Colorado Springs Gazette on 18 Oct, after my arrest but before the paper got the news to rectify a time-frame misconception i tossed around earlier. The version of that story is dated 17 Oct, but the paper version came out the following morning. I remain without legal representation and will accept any offer to confer, but no tapdancers to take the case. I'm not so stupid as to imagine i can learn the Byzantine procedure of Our shameful legal system before the 8th of November well enough to get the point across if i represent myself, but neither will i accept representation from someone who will not take my approach. Professor Collins: I am the guy arrested for camping in Colorado Springs. Although the perfectly certain fact has yet to sink in amongst many of my cohorts here in Colorado Springs, i am well aware that the point you made for the CSpgs Gazette the other day is entirely true. No-camping ordinances are by no means unconstitutional. This fact highlights the argument against the amendment of that original document by many of our founders fearful that the enumeration of some rights would expose others to attack. Current events managed to plop a soapbox and peculiarly focused bullhorn directly in my lap. I intend to plead not guilty on grounds that no-camping laws violate the pre-constitutional right to "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness," and that this case is exemplar of the general and drastic erosion of human rights in the U.S., and across the entire globe. I am not particularly concerned as to the outcome of the case, but extraordinarily pleased at the opportunity to publicly state a few sentiments i believe by observation to be both common and woefully unarticulated. I remain unbacked by any legal practitioner and i'd love your input, discussion, advice, council, suggestions, or connection, in any "and/or" configuration that suits your fancy. Warmest Regards, Steve Bass "Be yourself. Everyone else is already taken." --Oscar Wilde (Reprinted from Hipgnosis)

Report from the Right Front

I will be the first to point out, right now here in this forum, that I have a Texas-sized ego. I think I'm a reasonably smart guy, and not unlike any writer, that I have some things to say that are so danged important that I'm gonna say them. I'll also point out that some others in the conversation, possibly including you, gentle reader, have the same handicap. The entire discussion ought to be undertaken with a salt shaker within easy reach 'cause everything anyone has to say ought to be taken with a liberal helping.   This post is an attempt to unravel a bit of a Gordian knot that has tied itself around the politics of "Occupy" movements around the world, and particularly here in Colorado Springs, Colorado, U.S.A. without hacking at it with f-bombs directed at the many possessors of equally large egos as mine, while openly acknowledging strong disagreements between some of us. Believe me, this is a difficult bit of unraveling and though I mean to avoid ad hominem attacks, I'll not promise to eschew strong language. It's also a bit of a news update, straight from the horse's ass, so to speak. Sorry if it runs long or gets complicated; it's a big hairy knot. I am the guy that picked up the first no-camping ordinance violation in the city of Colorado Springs. I did this while participating in protests falling under the ill-defined aegis of a group called "Occupy Colorado Springs," in solidarity with another ill-defined group called "Occupy Wall Street," and other Occupiers all over the world. In case it's unclear: there's no such thing as Occupy Colorado Springs, (OCS). What happened is a few guys, boldly named at the top of the eponymous Facebook page like John Hancock at the bottom of that one famous page, finally got bent enough out of shape to do something about it so they set up a page, and a small camp down at Bijou and Tejon--Acacia Park. They were behind the Wall Street guys and liking what they were about, I came behind them. There is no club membership, no charter, no bylaws, no nothing to define the Colorado Springs group that might in any way be construed to suggest the thing we are doing at Acacia Park is anything other than a gathering of a bunch of fully leaderless sovereign individuals that happen to share a common distaste at the state of human affairs extant in the world today. Anyone who has known me for any length of time, or has read any of the pages preceding this post will know that this is nothing new for me. I was and remain ecstatic at the development of public expression, both here and globally. I am a free actor in the business of protesting in general, and that involving the city's no-camping ordinance in particular. I act as a sovereign, as a member of OCS whatever that means, as a citizen of the U.S.A., as a citizen

To be or to be somewhere else

An attempt to address a few issues presented here in as brief a fashion possible: Re: “Occupy Colorado Springs hits legal wall.” Regardless of the opinions of any observer or participant in any protests currently under way here or across the country, police are likely to follow the direction of their superiors, apart from unauthorized behavior on the part of mavericks or rogues. Jason points out that the Bill of Rights "trumps" city ordinances and statutes, and if that is not true then I am personally inclined to object strenuously and if necessary physically, in the sense that I will camp "illegally" with the occupiers during the course of the current protestations. A point is advanced during the meeting that separates homeless campers from active political occupiers. As a matter of personal opinion, though there are some real differences in context, the camping ordinance is bad law as yet untested in courts. However, having been involved with the free food biz in Colorado Springs for decades I am confident in stating that many homeless campers are in their position by choice, having opted out of a political system found onerous. I see no legitimate difference between this lifestyle of protest and the pointed expressions of protest embraced by Occupy Colorado Springs. Other homeless campers are thus because of uncontrolled habits, some of which fall under the label of "diseased" behavior by authoritative bodies in the U.S. or because of circumstances external to their control. There are only two varieties of property in the entirety of the U.S.--public or private. If the continuously burgeoning population of homeless campers is barred from sleeping on public property, and have no means by which to acquire access to private property, they have no option at all. Others are then required by default to put them up, thus far manifest here in conditions both unsanitary and unsavory as demonstrable by the bed-bug ridden Express Inn or the Aztec Motel, or else the Salvation Army--court ordered church. Otherwise, our only other option is to incarcerate them. I maintain that an unmentioned and "unalienable" right of all human beings is simply to be, wherever that being may take place. Jason points out the tenuous Constitutional position of the camping ordinances in a reasonably clear manner. The position of the police is clear and understandable, though I believe they are mistaken about the issues with city statutes; they will do as directed by others. Some of us affiliated with with the Occupiers, including I, believe arrest followed by courtroom examination of these and other questions may be seen as a good thing, and would result in the elimination of obviously untenable, ill-conceived statutes that are currently being enforced only in the most visible and problematic cases anyway. This describes some of the entanglement of the only somewhat separate matters of Occupiers in Colorado Springs, and campers in Colorado Springs. Without more than this brief mention, it also demonstrates the erosion of liberty in this country that precipitates the protests in the

Cajun squirrels and field peas

One more time, for the Community Kitchen Cookbook. This is something like the coon-asses I planted tree with for a season used to do over a propane cooking ring. They used a couple dozen squirrels and fed us all at once. Man, that was some good times. If you want it coon-ass authentic, serve with plenty of cheap beer. Don't get too drunk and kick the pot over. Squirrel with Black-Eyed Peas Four medium-size squirrels, drawn, skinned, and cleaned 1/2 lb Black-eyed peas 3 md Onions 2 sm Carrots 1/2 pk Frozen sweet peas 1/4 lb Smoked link sausage Flour Bacon fat or lard Garlic Little dab of oregano and marjoram Salt and pepper 1 c Chicken broth For the slow cooker: serves two Put the squirrels into salted water and hold overnight in the refrigerator; the next day, rinse and pat dry. Bring 4-6 cups of water to vigorous boil in a large saucepan, then add the black-eyed peas to it. Boil furiously for 2 minutes, then remove from the heat and cover; hold 15 minutes and drain. Quarter the squirrels, and dredge with flour. Sauté in a skillet in hot bacon fat or lard until golden brown, then drain on a paper towel and place in a crock-pot. Saute the garlic til golden before adding onion. . Chop the onions coarsely, and sauté in bacon fat and pan drippings until translucent, and add to the pot. Cut the carrots into 3/4" lengths, and the sausage into 1/8" disks, then add them along with the frozen peas and the cooked black-eyed peas. Salt and pepper to taste and stir gently; add the chicken broth and cook in the crock-pot for 8 hours on low setting, or until the meat is almost falling off the bones. For a different flavor, you can substitute lentils or navy beans for the black-eyed peas. (Reprinted from Hipgnosis)

Today’s Tom Sawyer

It's 4am here and this occurred to me strongly enough just now to have me say it just now. For Vic, Ken and the rest of my Christian friends, as well as Michele, Kathryn, and others who get twitchy when I bring up the Bible.   I had breakfast with my friend Vic a little while ago and we had some of this conversation--I mean this conversation. The one we've been having if you've read any of this stuff around here, or if you've been to see me at my Facebook, or on the sidewalk or whatever. Vic is a Christian, and about as solid a practitioner as I've ever met. He "works" as a prayer director for one of the internationally influential untaxed Christian pseudo-businesses one might easily enough find scattered around town here in Colorado Springs. Years ago I lived in Lindale, Texas and I used to say Lindale was the buckle of the Bible Belt. Now that some of the big organizations down in Lindale have disappeared due to fraud and embezzlement and the like and some of the people I knew down in East Texas have moved to this very town I sometimes say America's waistline has risen with age and the buckle has found a home in Colorado Springs. Anyhow, Vic is an affable guy and a good friend and we had a good time over our platesful of arterial lubrication such as we Americans like to do at breakfast. He said he had read some here on these e-pages--I aaalmost cringed because of a certain propensity of mine. Then I remembered one of the axiomatic rules I've taught my kids since they started picking up English: "There's no such thing as a bad word, only bad timing." It's time for this. Vic said he found some of the thoughts he'd come across here, "interesting," and mused that I had a bone to pick with "organized religion," which is true, but hasn't really come up at hipgnosis just yet, I don't think. I cringed a bit at having utilized terms like "motherfuckah" while discussing a Bible tidbit known as the Beatitudes from a longer passage known as the Sermon on the Mount. It's one of those axiomatic rules for lots of Christians, and for many who've never set foot in a Christian edifice as well. One finds the passage, (from the book of Matthew, chapter 5, in the Bible, if you're interested), hanging on wooden plaques and the like in people's living rooms and over their toilets and chapel entrances all over the world, and I suppose in every tongue still in print. I felt a twinge of embarrassment at the time that I get now and then from writing strongly about such grand subject matter knowing well that I'm no saint myself. So I brushed my way by that one at the time, and we went on with breakfast, and with other portions of the Conversation. That's why this is for Vic at the top of the

Genocide

When I was a young hoodlum, I plagiarized a bit of prose poetry with something like this at its core in order to make myself look cool. As an officially legal adult I've lost interest in how things look and have taken up a pursuit of how things Are. This is my take on the piece that my younger self recognized as valuable. That unknown poet, whose name is long lost to the mists of my long lost mind may well recognize a few of his or her words here. No harm intended, kind sir or ms. All the cells that may have stolen your work wholesale are long dead. I hope you like what my momentarily current self has done with the memory.... When I woke up this morning I pulled back the cover and in so doing scattered skin cells like chaff from wheat onto the floor. I drank a bunch of hot-ass coffee and scalded my tongue--maybe the caffeine killed a few hundred thousand brain cells. Who knows? I rode my bike to a demonstration, undoubtedly reaping a harvest of sorrow amongst the muscle cells in my anguished protesting protester's legs. When I arrived and put the rest of my body to protesting I met a friend and we hugged causing the deaths of multitudes of fleshly villagers in each of our respective bodies. As the day progresses into evening I'll meet others maybe loved ones maybe new acquaintances and we will joyfully kill one another's cells ending their brief unnoticed lives ignominiously. If it should fall out that we fuck--Genocide! How is it that these most tender of acts expressing our humanity are so violent in their collatery? Does it matter? Are those cells not reborn in a new generation a new regeneration? Hark! I am born again yes born again. I am born and born and born requiring the Universe to bear me. It's the points on a line--I am born again at each indivisible moment. Infinite. There are no two points between which there are not infinite dimensionless points. I've been born again more times than there are numbers for as I wrote this. You've committed murder in your own head while you read it. Surely this bit has killed some of your brains off too. The beauty of it all is Infinite. Eternal. Undying. (Reprinted from Hipgnosis)

Willie and Waylon and Some Other Dude: A story about weed, marriage, and Texas tall tales, Part 2

For you, Willie. God bless the Hell out of ya! Alright, so this is all the same thought and I'm just thinkering around with it some for y'all. And it's all bullshit.   I bet some of y'all forgot this was in the offing. I didn't, and it really is all one thought. It's about more than lost weekends or divorce fodder, too. It's about God and country, life, liberty, and the pursuit of revolution in the fast lane. Let's hope no one gets hurt, because it's not me in the fast lane. And you thought I was going to tell you something torrid, din'cha!? Wait--maybe I am! A lot of the guys that started this country--the U.S.A., where I live--were church folk. They tried real hard, ya have to grant, but they were church folk after all, so they had blinders on just like lots of church folk always have, and still do today. Get to lookin' too closely at the periphery of things and it's scary, don't we all know.... They came over here in the first place on the run from some other church folk, that wanted to kill the Hell out of them. So, naturally they immediately set about establishing a domicile, ( in someone else's back yard, mind you), where they could kill the shit out of everyone else, instead. After a while that arrangement started to smell a little funny--on account of the bullshit, see--and a few got together to to try and straighten things out. Besides, the Grand Game wasn't working out quite right and the game pieces kept getting scattered. The Occupiers read St. Thomas's Declaration at Acacia Park the other day, ( I call him St. Thomas just to mess with him--he was just as scrambled as the rest of us, if ya didn't know). It was a beautiful thing. It was beautiful when Kyle read it with his shredded voice. It was beautiful when Jefferson wrote it, and beautiful when they read it in the Boston Common. It's all the more applicable today if you crunch a few names and change a few numbers, and Jefferson would certainly be needing to restrain Patrick Henry from swinging blows by now if those guys lived now, and had let it all slide as far. Jefferson wrote the Declaration, , but he had nothing to do with the Bill o' Rights. He was out of town when they threw that stuff together, which they did 'cause they knew he hated the idea. In fact, he may have ditched town because he knew they were gonna just have to write it and he just couldn't stand it. He figured it best to leave well enough alone, for fear of a thing developing like we've heard, "Everything not forbidden is mandatory." Now would be the moment to mention that this is an axiom in--wait for it... Quantum Physics, stolen from literature fair and square by a fellow named Gell-Mann and named the "Totalitarian Principle". That's right--physicists see the poetry and the

Revolution at 2112 RPM

For Tom, the guys at Occupy Colorado Springs, and everyone else: So, if I sit here and carry on about how we can get out of this grief under which so many of us find ourselves buried by living cooperatively, and no one plays along, it's like division by zero, an operation that produces no definable solution and the thought of which is so troublesome it caused philosopher George Berkeley to suspect all mathematicians could be devil-worshipers on the side. Seriously. A new friend I met at Acacia Park yesterday asked where the little hullabaloo about banks and bailouts and revolution and such was happening in Colorado Springs was asking the general milieu of rabble rousers where their revolution could be expected to go. (Hi, Tom). Some of the guys there, as one might expect, were so fed up with the obviously unsupportable state of current affairs that they were almost gleefully anticipating violence and war--civil war--right here in the U.S.A.. (Hi, Pat). I certainly can't blame anyone for thinking that way, given that I hoped fervently for exactly the same outcome from around the 3rd grade til only recently, really. I've already mentioned my opinion of the futility of standard issue revolutions. We've tried that. It doesn't work. We've tried Monarchies, ordinary dictatorships, "working-class dictatorships", Capitalism, Communism, Socialism, Ism after Ism--none of what we've tried to do has worked, neither for the oppressed nor the oppressors. We've been dividing by zero all the while. You should look that operation in the eye some, so you know what I'm saying. It's the same as proving a negative, or trying to work out the math of the Singularity, and if you find it difficult, one glance at a graph will turn the lights on a little for you. When I was a schoolboy, I always thought it was supremely bogus to respond to any questions about division by zero, (or other imponderables, for that matter), by asserting the answers to be "undefined" just because a conventional answer might be unsatisfactory. I was a weird kid, OK? Look at the link or find something more techie, (a little help, Kathryn?), and then extrapolate the idea to the business of social revolutions and you'll find my point, or at least one "quantum" facet of it. You could have a look at a representation of the Ouroborus and get the same notion to materialize in your head, maybe. The shit we've been doing has not worked, is not working, and will not work. The answers we're after will not derive from the operation we've been attempting to apply, no matter what. We compete. That's just what we do. We compete against one another, against Nature, and maybe against God, though it's not by any means compulsory for you to think of it in any sort of Divine sense, or wrestle with religious aversions for the thing to work out the same, here. That's just me. The competition we've been so avid to pursue all these generations hasn't worked

Pseu Pseu Pseudo-Do-Dah-Day

For Rob. Thanks buddy! Say hi to yer Mom.   We've been toying with some pretty weird bits of thinking here, and it's already getting hard to follow. Lemme try and tie a few things together. Also, if you're still with me, now's a good time to point out that this humble site is best read in conjunction with the discussions on my Facebook, (Steve Bass), and for this bit, especially within the PPCC Philosophy Club page linked from my Wall or wherever it is. Remember my mention of Pseudo-statements back at Willie's story? Elsewhere, in Stage Magick and around about, notably at the PPCC Philosopy Club linked off my Facebook, I put up the business of our inability to prove a negative. The assertion that "This statement does not belong in the set of all true statements," is a nice example. The statement is internally self-defeating, negated by paradox; it's internally inconsistent, self-contradictory, neither true, nor false-- a pseudo-statement. The "set of all true statements" statement is a tidy example in that attempting an answer produces a nonsense response awfully reminiscent, at least to me, of the sort of thing that happens to those hapless physicists when they try to crunch their numbers beyond the event horizon and into the heart of the Singularity. Lots of PHDs get real pissy if you try and take their numbers and drag them into the "real" world here. Like most of us, abstractions are fine for them. Hanging flesh on the ephemeral turns it into a monster for some. I, on the other hand, have no such qualm. If matter isn't made of matter, as some rather esoteric physics appears to indicate, that most assuredly effects us, sez me. The problem of proving a negative is stickier than the "True Statements" statement, because we can somehow tell the essence of the genuinely self-defeating pseudo-statement is True. Something about the very idea is akin to the business of the Singularity--we can't seem to get there, or even define the nature of that There, but we know there has to be Something, OK? And thinking about it produces notions that resonate in our world. We've also talked some about politics, and here's the clincher. Our whole system, our World, maybe even our very Selves combine to make a big ol' Pseudo-statement, overburdened by internal paradox and contradiction, and decorated with infinite concentric, overlapping circles and waves of Pseudo-reality. The "Doctrine of the Many," claimed by Zoroastrians, Jains, some Gostics, among others, avers that we humans are compound beings. Some scientists at the fringe have claimed this as well, but let me keep this as political as I can for a moment. The concept surfaces in Western thinking when we speak of "talking to ourselves," which we all know can be quite an argument at times, and in notions like multiple personality. Most U.S. citizens will agree that we are a "Christian" nation in spite of that pesky 1st Amendment. We'll acknowledge "diversity" in religious matters,

Yer in the Army Now….

So much has been happening lately I'm afraid this will be a big confused mess, but what th' hey, right?   The world is in a Meltdown. Hell that's the reason I have time for this crap, ya know? This is NOT a surprise. We've all known it's been coming for a looong time now, though it's hard to nail down that specific moment when we knew. Maybe we always did. I'll get to how I think we've known, and how we didn't know we've know a different time. For now, a somewhat more imminent thought. Here's one place to find a buncha bone-chilling stats http://www.theglobaleducationproject.org/earth/index.php . The numbers are everywhere. This is only one source, and far more officious, (don't mess with me, I used that word on purpose), sources are available. YOU look 'em up. Anyone wanting to look fuckin' stupid can tapdance around them til--well, til the Apocalypse--and they're not gonna change, cause tapdancin' won't change it. If it was gonna, it woulda! I already put it more or less in a nutshell: WE'RE FUCK-ED!! But we're not. We're still breathing, still eating, drinking, fucking, pumping out babies, and so on. I have two accidental children whom I love without bounds. I genuinely thought it would be rude, at best, to sire a new Person and foist all this bullshit upon him16 years ago when the pertinent romantic interlude took place. Maybe it is, in way, but in plenty of other ways life is as always a thing of such great, broad, deep beauty that I think all potential for its fulfillment ought to be pursued. (Don't imagine I've converted to Catholicism or something--that though was rather more metaphysically driven, and you should put on a raincoat if it looks like rain. Or waders if it looks like--you know ;)) Look around, though. We're ALIVE!! More than we know. And life shows us in every discrete packet of light entering our retinas that it will rise, no matter what. We can't kill the Earth. I rather think she'd prefer us to work this out, but she'll be fine. We can certainly destroy our ability to live here as Humans, though. In Consider the Lilies, I started to explain what I'm up to here. Every time I approach that question, the answers that come to me sound more and more absurdly grandiose. Save the world? I mean, reeealy! when I was a young child, like in the 3rd grade or something, (no shit--ask Mom), I was politicized and set in a frame of mind opposed to fascism, oppression, and unkindness, for lack of a better term. Everyone knows this is the course of idealism, though, right? I got out in the "real" world and it struck me that one must make some pragmatic concessions to get by. Right? We all learn this, don't we? Usually when it "strikes" us it's like a brick in the head. It's usually thrown at us by some cog in the Fascist machine. If you've read the

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