I became insane with long intervals of horrible sanity.
Edgar Allen Poe
The trouble with fighting for human freedom is that one spends most of one's time defending scoundrels. For it is against scoundrels that oppressive laws are first aimed, and oppression must be stopped at the beginning if it is to be stopped at all.
-H. L. Mencken
Many people would sooner die than think; In fact, they do so
What I have been telling you, from alpha to omega, what is the one great thing the sigil taught me—that everything in life is miraculous. For the sigil taught me that it rests within the power of each of us to awaken at will from a dragging nightmare of life made up of unimportant tasks and tedious useless little habits, to see life as it really is, and to rejoice in its exquisite wonderfulness. If the sigil were proved to be the top of a tomato-can, it would not alter that big fact, nor my fixed faith. No Harrowby, the common names we call things by do not matter—except to show how very dull we are,”
-James Branch Cabell
April 23, 2014 - 11:33 p.m.
I have been procrastinating for hours. I better write as I'm exhausted. This is going to be a metablog. The most important thing that happened to me was writing the last entry, Diary of a Mad Diarist. If you missed it go back and read it.
Writing a diary gives me a different perspective of my life. It has to do with something that comes up quite a bit in my conversations, theory of mind. I write knowing that you, My Gentle Readers will read it and that makes me think about what you will think about my life. Are you getting this? It's a bit self-referential. I was feeling horrible when I wrote it. I have been feeling bad most of the time of late. But I know that I will eventually feel better and I didn't want you to think I was sitting there wallowing in self pity. So I ended on an optimistic note. I praised myself. I was feeling bad and gave what I think of as the Allenby speech. In the film Lawrence of Arabia Lawrence returns to Cairo after being captured, beaten, probably raped, and released, without the Turks ever even asking who he was. He is broken He asks General Allenby "why nobody ever told him?"
Wait, that wasn't what I wanted to write about. I wanted to not make this personal. OK change of gears. Paul Krugman and others write quite a bit about the asymmetry of the political left and right. The right has abandoned facts and empiricism for ideological purity. It's all about tribal affinity not reality.
But the left has people that do exactly the same thing. I see it all the time on Facebook. I see it in my friends but even more in my friends of friends. No what the difference is that the extremist gained power on the right but not the left. Yes I know people on Facebook that do it but not the leaders of the party. The ideologue of the left complain that neither party represents them. Dennis Kucinic was the only one they consider one of them. On the right it's congressman and senators. It's the most influential media personalities like Rush Limbaugh. The extremists have real power and those that are more reasonable fear the Tea Party so go further to the right.
So there are kooks and ideologues and people that would rather not think if they don't have to on the left. It's just that nobody puts them in charge.
The reason I couldn't write today is that I spent the day at WfUV. I had to be there at 6 AM. I decided to be extra good and get up 20 minutes earlier so I can make the 4:39 and get to Grand Central well before the 5:40 MetroNorth train I have to make. I usually take the 4:59 train which leaves me running to make the MetroNorth which I usually miss. So what happened. the 4:39 was 21 minutes late and I left later than usual not earlier. So I get to Grand Central, buy my ticket, run to the platform. The Train was there. And it started to pull out as I reached the conductor who had his head out the window and said, "sorry." Ugh.
OK I'll write about volunteering tomorrow. Now I have to get to sleep.
Fearful Asymmetry. - April 23, 2014