Lets Change the National Anthem.

Is the Star Spangled Banner Racist?

 

No.

 

Irrelevant who wrote it, irrelevant the era it was written in. Case in Point: Amazing Grace, written by a slave trader on a slave ship with slaves on it, the song is revered and sung by denominations of all backgrounds every Sunday and has been translated into Cherokee among other languages. If the message from a song written by the bringer of smallpox can bring a message to Cherokee Christians, we can safely say that zero context of any song has any relevance on the intent and meaning. We are now done with that discussion.

We are allowed to refuse to play music, like how Israeli symphonies do not play Wagner, so let us discuss the unique similarities between super QB Colin Kaepernick and Mr. Donald J Trump. In particular, we shall examine the nuances relating the Star Spangled Banner with a Giant Wall on the Mexican Border. They are two sides of the same coin, or two ‘points’ on Marianne of France.

Both of these opinions, Mr. Kaepernicks notion, that the National Anthem is Racist, and Mr. Trump’s notion, that a giant brick wall between Mexico and the United States rocks, are based on a fact. Kaepernick senses there are unpleasant nuances to the National Anthem, and Trump sees that unchecked border policy is big issue.

So let’s explore what happens when we decide to up and fix the problem. With Trump, the solution is simple, build the wall, put the receipt in a plastic bag and mail it to Mexico. With Kaepernick, what do we do? If we had to I guess we should just replace the Anthem with YMCA by the Village People. When you think about the Village People, who they were and what they represent, and the idea behind the song “YMCA” there’s really nothing you could possibly object to. We’ve got all walks of life, multiple backgrounds, the Indian, the Cowboy, the Biker, the Construction worker, the Village People have it all, and the song Y.M.C.A. is all about community involvement, fitness, supporting each other, and every republican can get behind ” pick yourself off the ground”

The Village People include a Police Officer, because we have law and order. We have a Cowboy and an Indian, acknowledging our past. We have a construction worker, representing progress, and a leather clad biker, personifying the rugged individualism this country prides itself on.

Every Democrat can agree that “No man does it all by himself.”

And think, decades from now, when Michael Phelps wins his 358th Gold Medal, up on the podium,, the audience dancing, doing that arm movement bit, so that even the deaf can appreciate the moment, the last haunting words echoing in the auditorium, “what do you wanna be? ”

 

There, I fixed it.  The Olympics are gonna be awesome now.

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Nobody Drives Slow

For the last two weeks I have been in Midland. For those who did not know: Midland is what happens when the middle class gets oil and gas and stays ramped up for about a decade and then gets a 25% pay cut. Things aren’t bad yet and if oil comes back things will be great. Everyone and I mean EVERYONE drives a pick up truck and I get the feeling that if your second vehicle is something other than a truck it means you are married. The maxim of, if your car gets stuck  in a ditch in Texas just hold on some guys in a pick up truck will come by in about 30 minutes is upgraded to, if some sort of axle breaks in Midland someone with welding equipment in their truck will end up driving by in about a minute and you can kludge it enough to get to a mechanic. The only environmentalist is buried outside of town, he didn’t last very long.

The notable difference for me is the stark difference in small town driving and it’s obvious absence in Midland.

In small towns, you sometimes expect to be able to get away with going a little under 85 miles an hour on smaller streets. This is not the case in Midland. Also there are no sidewalks. The bike route is about as safe as Mad Max’s trip beyond Thunderdrome, and about as without incident as Ryan Lochte in South America. And by the way, they pulled a gun on him. It was a conversation until the gun came out, and now it’s a robbery. A lot of people are upset and say that he shouldn’t have left the country, but believe me, the Napoleonic system makes for a legal disaster. Anyone who has had a friend stuck in Mexican Jail can attest to this. Furthermore, the Brazilians who knocked over the Lochte Krewe were equally justified. If they had said, “sure get out of here, we’ll send you a letter and wait for reparations,” you know what would have happened? Allow me to demonstrate.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thank you.

So back to Midland It’s like a lot of those lumber towns at the turn of the 20th century. Based on current technology, the future looks bright. They even have wind power turbines up. And for someone from a small-ish town like Midland, the kind of bizarre loop de loops of Dallas are probably completely nonsensical. As crazy as those ways and means are to a fellow from Midland, the real unhinged world to an Olympic Swimmer who has spent 8 hours per day in the pool for the last 4 years, or in this case, entire adult life, and is suddenly snapping on the euphoria of winning a stack of  medals, may be really chaotic.

Only the moments where we dissappear like mist into our environment and cease to be raindrops can true experience begin. It’s like dancing, are  you the goofball on the side of the dancefloor watching and critiquing or the daring sociopath on the wood throwin down the hottest moves this century? You gonna be the selfie or just take one? Midland

 

 

Nuclear Horned Dogs

What do premarital sex and killing dogs have in common? Narwhals, and here’s why. In the May 2009 Smithsonian Magazine , Abigail Tucker covers an intrepid team of scientists including Kristin Laidre catching Narwhal in the small Southwestern(Greenland) town of Nuuk.

The Narwhal is an elusive beast, spending six months of the year under the ice pack, catching air through cracks and venturing southward stopping at the Fjords only briefly. Similarly, the entity who killed Matt Steadman’s dog mysteriously appeared amidst the fjord of Hillary Clinton signs to kill his dog and move on. Like the purpose of the Narwhal’s horn, sometimes coated with green algae and at its base alive with sea algae, joked by Herman Melville to be ‘for opening letters’, everything about the killer of the dogs is unknown. Much as the Apothecary Society of London mistakenly included the Unicorn on their crest too late to realize the horns they used were from Narwhals,  the knee jerk reaction to blame any one cause or motive for the pooch’s death in this case may be equally misplaced.  Leading us to the real question: what is a Narwhals’ horn and how does it relate to the evangelical view on sex before marriage?

Joshua Harris clearly states that the danger in his book comes not from the content, or the words, but in the rigid boot camp clarity with which readers indoctrinated their kids. Keep in mind that Jesus himself started running around at around 30ish, so to wake up and tell your church friends, “hey, this 21 year old kid totally has all the answers”is a recipe for disaster. Unlike Abby the dog, who ingested neurotoxin, we humans have a bit of leeway in humans we trust and who we buy our powdered Narwhal Horn from. Even Martin Luther was given Narwhal (unicorn) horn as a medicine before his death, to let you know how it worked.  Liz Len, if that is her real name mentions unraveling the strands of the Gordian Knot. Well, if you want to reference the Gordian Knot you are going to have to cross reference cutting the Gordian Knot, which Alexander the Great did, using a sword, which was probably titled “Occam’s Razor.”

See, Narwhal meat is high in Vitamin C, and sailors who refused to eat the somewhat hazelnut flavored meat, which is caught when in pursuit of gonatus squid of the order Teuthida, caught scurvy and died like Martin Luther. Gonatus squid are pelagic and can be found as deep as 4,500 m under water, which, considering Narwhal researcher Mads Peter Heide-Jorgensen’s Narwhal transmitters broke at depths of  500 all the way up to 1,800m depth, where data seems to indicate Narwhals’ swim upside down, could be a sign that Narwhals plunge to untold depths, similar to the swimming depths of madness a human capable of killing someone else’s pet dog could plunge too. There’s just no idea what is going on in that brain.

During hunting season, the Inuit people trek across the ice to open cracks where the whales come up for air. To this day,no human has ever seen a Narwhal eat in the wild underwater. Similar to God’s divine plan for the universe, Narwhal dining habits remain a mystery. When we look at Joshua Harris’ book from 1997, we see only the Narwhals Horn, bobbing in the water as it comes up for air, and to infer great volumes from the paltry data of the page would be foolish. There is a gender bias, male Narwhals fetch $5,500 for qernertaq tuugaalik, $6,400 for angisok tuugaaq. Females, those without the tusk, qernertaq, fetch only $4,500. And that is the fee paid by the scientists who don’t even harvest the horn or meat, they catch and release. Think about it, the Narwhal Horn alone adds $1000 in value. Humans flock to confidence, and whoever can pin a solid reasonable tail on the donkey and declare out loud, “there, I fixed it” is bound to be lost sometimes. To complain about boundaries, such as “don’t touch the stove while it is on” smacks of a general fed upness hat no societal change can solve. Like Narwhal placebo, there’s no for sure cure to keeping yourself from getting pregnant, your car keyed, your dog killed. But like euthanizing your pup, which is sad, and whatever it is married couples do these days, which is awesome, there’s a lot of data that fails at depths of 1,800 meters where we can only suspect there are Narwhal swimming upside down because until we rent the Trieste  or James Camerons vertical torpedo there’s no way we could imagine cruising any deeper than 700m, the supposed maximum depth of an American Seawolf Attack sub. The Narwhals horn should always be suspect, in that it indicates our desire to mysteriously profit, or manipulatively infer the unknown. Anyway, I think I’ve made my point clear enough. Feel free to leave a comment and thanks for reading.

 

The End of the Whirled.

About this time in 64 AD, the Roman Emperor Nero either set the fire himself or, was the hero who helped the refugees escape from it. Classic politics, folks.

The visual of Emperor dancing on a hill playing the violin lit from below by the flickering inferno, dancing with ash on his toga, feet trampling the night time grass makes for great TV. Which brings us to the next great enemy of Democracy: Title IX and Olympic Volleyball.

On August 11, 2016, Kayla Harrison beat a Slovenian to advance to the finals in Judo. If you’ve never seen the sport, think of two lion cubs fighting. Now, the NBC people decide to show inconsequential semi quarter final prelim men’s Sport Nobody Cares About Beach Volleyball instead of a Woman who could Unlike Rhonda Rousey easily have a chance of winning in a fight with a guy around 180lbs. Seriously three hours of Dollhauser serving on sand and then “oh by the way here’s the last six seconds of the Gold Medal Match for Kayla.” They showed the full semifinal match earlier, but none of the final?

It goes to show why forced coverage is a a terrible idea. In order to not seem sexist, the NBC producers are trying to show equal coverage of Men’s Volleyball so it’s not suspicious when they place four hours of women in bikinis during primetime. But then you get the stupid paradox that, in the name of feminism and equality, it would actually be better to show Kayla Harrison in her Gold Medal match, but you can’t because you’re pretending to care about beach volleyball. Let’s just admit: Beach Volleyball is an eye candy event and that the women got together and in secret sorta agreed that in order to get more coverage, it would help if all the beach volleyball athletes, um, uh, got less coverage.

To that end my female friends say they would care about Men’s beach Volleyball more if the men didn’t wear shirts.

So in order to not seem sexist, we miss out on Kayla Harrison winning a really high stakes Gold Medal Match, and instead of a sport of empowerment we get dudes in the sand. Not even a medal match.

So if we could admit that everyone is just a little bit sexist, we could cut away from this Volleyball and show the actually impressive sports match up without *breaking* the sort of unspoken Excessiquality Culture we live in.

That’s not to say equality is anything other than important. Somewhere between allowing women to vote and refusing to show a woman win the Gold Medal in Judo because you also showed a lot of womens’ Beach Volleyball, there is a balance. I mean there have to be some rules, we aren’t Anarchists, after all. That’s why sports. Even contact sports have rules. There are boundaries in Beach Volleyball, and there are touch pads in swimming and you have to fight unarmed in Judo(no shivs allowed) and pay attention to right-of-way in some Fencing weapons, but we have to allow that sometimes things are against the rules for stupid reasons.

 

 

Mic Drop Moment:

We have to be careful in the world today, saying the wrong thing can get you killed:

Here’s a good example. After brilliant poetry and eloquence for a few paragraphs you get this:

“You stubborn Jewish leaders! You refuse to give your hearts to God or even listen to him. You are always against what the Holy Spirit wants you to do. That’s how your ancestors were, and you are just like them! 52 They persecuted every prophet who ever lived. They even killed those who long ago said that the Righteous One would come. And now you have turned against that Righteous One and killed him. 53 You are the people who received God’s law, which he gave you through his angels. But you don’t obey it!” (Book of Acts, 7)

Thus goes Stephen to his death. There comes a point where sugar coating and being polite falls flat and we say what we are genuinely really  thinking.. But are we really “saying what we really feel” or are we saying what we are feeling at the time in a heightened emotional state as a portrait of the specific moment in time that will naturally overlook nuance for the sake of directness and simplicity.

In this example, I think Stephen has given a really comprehensive defense, looked at the stone faces of the men judging him, realized that there’s nothing he can say to walk out of there alive, and figured, “look if I’m going to get killed no matter what I might as well say something that warrant the death penalty”

The opposite of this is 2016 Rio Athlete Lilly King, who pretty clearly taunted her rival who is under some severe doping allegations, and then, upon beating her in the finals, clarified her position and taking it one step further?

King did win, defeating the Russians in a Cold War throwback, but other people make a proleptic victory lap and don’t come up to snuff. I’m pretty sure every political candidate for Executive Office has, whether they win or not, at some point said, “I will be the nominee” however delusional it sounds at the time or in the future looking back which is an unfair criticism as there is evidence that lying to yourself can be good.

This raises the question, whenever you watch and criticize a politician for lying, aren’t you being unfair since in the study I mentioned athletes who are successful lie to themselves all the time? Maybe this self deception is completely required to succeed. Thus so, with any time you see a suspect in court mouthing off to a judge.

Now the questions morphs into, “did the subject actually deceive themselves into thinking this is a good idea?”  It calls to mind Shaft, the 1971 Blaxploitation film clip sampled in White Zombie’s timeless classic “Astro Creep 2000” wherein Richard Roundtree’s character is asked to “Watch your mouth man” and he reminds the Police Chief that he will “”Say any damn thing {the detective] want.”

Now the villain in this situation would be us. If everyone, especially successful people lie to themselves all the tie, then those who claim to be in search of other honest people, such as Diogenes with his lamp in broad daylight Athens, is merely, as the tail of the Emperor’s New Clothes dictates, a lesson in the more unfomfortable notion that maybe, everyone lies to themselves all the time all day every day, and that successful people are just better at it.

And now we end on the last words of Pilate to Jesus, “What is Truth” (John 19:38)

There it is. Standing right in front of you.

 

Edumucated

At this time of year the school education season is about to get back in full swing.

 

For students that means there are a precious few days left before school starts, fun ends and learning, in a complete coincidence, begins.

But what is education? Cooping kids up in a room with no access to any sort of exercise or supporting extracurricular scaffold beyond, “sit in a desk and don’t do anything” on threat of a colssal failure at life or some other abstract concept humans under the age of 13 are literally unable to grasp according to Piaget’s cognitive development model?

Or it’s about grades, which would be an Operant Conditioning reward according to B.F. Skinner

Not enough physical exertion, exercise, not enough development of cardiovascular health or life modelling. Firmly focused on the relationship between exercise and student test scores students should be spending at least three hours per day in vigorous physical exertion, and it should take precedent over time spent in front of a blackboard. After all, why not teach students to appreciate their own physical body. After all, they are stuck in it.

We all have multiple lifetimes on earth. The aforementioned Gunther von Hagens mentions that he has spent segments of his life doing such different.  30 years as a doctor, 10 years in a political prison camp, childhood on an operating table with the doctor proclaiming his likely death at the cracked skull from a steel door, survival of which inculcated a lifelong love of the power of scientific medicinal treatment, purloining from the jaws of death his German soul, nay the Visigoth scientific mind entrapped within his zygomatic arches defended the stronghold from ferrous siege.

 

The end.

 

HoboTime

A long time ago I was sitting in a coffee shop like this one, getting cracked out on caffeine and writing for journalism for some random website about news worldwide. I’d sit around until I heard someone in a funny accent and I’d then walk over and ask them about what country they were from and what the news was in their homeland. This was in LA so a lot of these people had scarves and lived in Brazil or were visiting from Norway or Swaziland which has the coolest flag ever.

During this time one guy turned out to be a businessman who hired me for some reason and while working for him up in Santa Barbara I had a disagreement with the college student I was subleasing from and rather than go all Matlock I moved out and having nowhere to go I lived in a homeless shelter and went to work during the day. This was trippy since being at work was the only time I was around sane normal people, coloring my opinion on having a job. I also found the Democrat nightmare and Republican “see i told you so” spot of not being able to afford housing on my budget(33% of my paycheck and no more) and the only government programs available required me to be unemployed. Why would I quit my job, the only stability I have, in order to get help. It’s pretty stupid that I have to get off any form of employment to get help, especially when I’ve run into people on unemployment who make more than I do. I’m not too much of a Frankford School or Saul Alinski conspiracy theorist but seriously why go through that trouble to remove any safety net a person has before any level of government intervention is applicable?

Nowadays I’m better off. I wrote a newspaper story about living on the street that covers that period in detail and now my only harkening back happens when I see bums on the street. Obviously treating them with the dignity any human deserves is my Christian duty, but at the same time I can’t just shell out all my money to help them out. They know what to do and what they can do to help themselves. Usually I’ll talk with them and discuss a bit on their options of places they can go for help and groups they can talk to. Most of them have enough excuses backed up but once I talk with them about life on the street they realize that I’m not just another sucker and either give up or get real and have some substantive dialogue.

Obviously you can give them money, and I think that’s a great idea, but i wonder about how much help it does versus a more realistic fix. A buddy of mine liked my terming this the ’emotional ponzi scheme’ where you give to the man on the street and get a payback that may be a lot in the form of ‘thanks’ or ‘hey man god bless’ but it doesn’t really have any sort of momentum for a serious improvement in condition compared to if that same handful of dimes had gone to Dallas Life Foundation or even the Bridge.

That’s all for now.