...But of these sophisms and elenchs of merchandise I skill not...
Milton, Areopagitica

Except he had found the
standing sea-rock that even this last
Temptation breaks on; quieter than death but lovelier; peace
that quiets the desire even of praising it.

Jeffers, Meditation On Saviors



the sanctions are working:

According to the Associated Press, "A Russian-made Iranian passenger plane carrying 168 people crashed shortly after takeoff Wednesday, nose-diving into a field northwest of the capital and shattering into flaming pieces." And politicos all over the world are responsible for this disaster. If your country voted to sanction airplane parts to Iran, you personally killed all these people.
Jane Stillwater 01.Jul.09
via wvns


We are also concerned at the increase in numbers of political prisoners being held in West Papua and the reports of systematic torture in the prisons.
Cronkite's gone
40 years since touchdown

Detained in India, Arrested in Bangladesh
Shahidul Alam

still more on the way:

"...he [Grieve/MacDiarmid] was led to read, among others, Nietzsche and Bergson and found himself as deeply susceptible to the Nietzschean injunction 'Become what thou art' as he was to Bergson's claim that it was the creative urge rather than natural selection that promoted the evolutionary process.
from Seamus Heaney Finders Keepers A Torchlight Procession of One
This is getting nearer to what makes Bowden's assertions and rejections important and true, yet confirms as well Keats' championing of ecological balance. What seems incompatible and separating between them is one more example of the reductive frame excluding the game-winning truth - that being the purpose of the frame to start.
Like the insistence on codifiable rules that can be abstracted and transported across time and geography, so that anything else is marginal and can be trivialized and left behind.
There seems to be, in my light reading of it anyway, an insistence in the Sufi tradition on the particularity of teaching, the immediacy of it, and the importance of it being alive and thoroughly in its moment. That's part of that.
The pigs want rules that can be written across the sky so they can be proprietized, trademarked, copyrighted, and owned, and also worked around. Because that's how they've come to own most everything else, including the Official Rule book, while avoiding anything like observant and ethically precise behavior.
"Thou Shalt Not Kill" except bad people, and as collateral damage etc.
Simple versions of the scam abound, not the least heart-tugging being the cliched response of American indigenous to the idea of ownership and salesmanship regarding land and water. As absurd as selling or buying the sky. And they meant that. Which meant they had no standing in a court adjudicating property rights.
Suffusing Bergson's "creative urge" is the assertive presence, the "I'm here" not so much as the cosmic mumbo-jumboish "I AM" as the open, possibly humorous, definitely humble, "I'm here" meaning "yes", meaning "life and me, we're happening", meaning the shark eating the sea lion can be all abstract and have null content of moral parameter and yet the human presence has its valence, rationality can be used to define any moral question down into the sub-atomic, unless that assertion steps in and halts the process.
Sooner or later this runs up against the need for a Higher Authority on the part of those who can't hold that without quaking. This is not to say, or even hint at the idea that there is no Higher Authority.
Whether or not that Authority has any substance isn't germane, it's the configuration of the dynamic that works.
And it's one big reason why we're in this spot.
Death is what's missing from the discourse, among other scary terms.
...more to come...


more to come on this:

I think the problem is balance, the biological equivalent of the politicians' promise of law and order. Balance is not possible - I feel this in my bones - but all the reserves and various mantras of ecology appeal to this idea of balance, of consumption matching production, the killing matching the births, the inputs matching the outputs. Notions like the park [Bowden's campaign to establish a national monument in the desert, the subject of the book] are seen as magic kingdoms where this balance will be displayed to our edification forever and forever and the lamb will lie down with the lion and there will be no talk of lamb chops with a dab of mint jelly on the side. The whales, they be peaceful, and the fucking dolphins are doing advanced mathematics in their soggy skulls. The redwoods are god with the bark on. the mountain lion reeks of serenity and the wolves strut about as mom and dad of the year. This thing called nature has been reduced to the status of Native Americans, creatures that cannot exist in life but only in the mind where they are housebroken and safe had don't shit in the street or talk out of turn. This, I cannot abide. Balance is inhuman. And false. The only balance that actually exists snores in the virtual reality of our nature documentaries, in the prisons of our schools, in the sexual teachings of the masturbating priests and in the hideous recipes of our nutritionists. Leave nothing but your footprints, after you've parked your rig, swaddled yourself in Lycra and put on boots made by cheerful slaves in some distant bog.
from Charles Bowden and Michael Berman's Inferno


whack/out of whack/whack:

For instance, consider research on the sea otter, which Kricher describes at great length, only rather obviously to conclude that "humans can unwittingly induce major alterations in ecosystem food webs."

In fact, the research illustrates much more than that. Between 1990 and 1997, in the western Aleutian Islands, the otter population plummeted by 90 percent because orcas began feeding on them. Previously orcas subsisted on fish-eating harbor seals and sea lions, but human over-fishing in the region led to a drop in seal and sea lion populations, forcing orcas to broaden their diet. Since the otters preyed on sea urchins, fewer otters meant more urchins, a rapidly expanding population that decimated the undersea kelp forests on which they fed. The loss of kelp in turn further disturbed the fish in the area, which relied on kelp for shelter, exacerbating the seal and sea lion famine, impelling orcas to eat more otters. The effect was so dramatic because otters were a "keystone" species in the region, meaning that the stability of the food web depended disproportionately on their well-being. Which is to say that a steady otter population helped to maintain the balance of nature.
Jonathon Keats/Salon 10.Jul.09
via 3QD
All well and good for the dispassionate and removed-to-a-safe-and-abstract-intellectual-distance, but that balance gets achieved, can only get achieved, through the same ways and means the balance gets unachieved - eating and reproducing and dying and it's pretty clear that what we're experiencing is the flowering of some creature that can only survive let alone thrive if things are and remain out of balance.
We in that usage being the them and the us and everybody in between. The specific survivability quotients etc are all academic and theoretical, but the teeth and claws belong to something that's fighting for its life as much as anybody else out there is, out here, as much as we are individually and collectively fighting for our lives, and it can't make it, can't do that survivability number, in a balanced world. Can't, not won't - is by its essential nature unable to survive in the world as the world is when it is most healthy. Disease proliferates as the system weakens, like that. And we're discussing the moral activities of what amounts to a disease.
Like the economy, it has to grow to maintain itself, and keep growing even as it reaches the limits of collateral destruction possible, even as the backwash of its wrongness and unsuitability floods the basements of its mud-and-cardboard mansions etc.
Like with so many of the mostly suddenly recently concerned public voices on this matter - not Keats', which seems cogent and reasonable - there's a sense that they're saying without really committing to it that whatever drove us over the precipice should continue as still-in-charge and appropriately so, should continue to drive even so, so get out of the way you confused hippies - we may not be able to save the polar bears or the Inuits but by God we'll save ourselves and our grandchildren.
So really what gets obvious is they have to go, they have to be sidetracked, blunted and dispensed with, stopped, or else the whole thing goes down with them.
There isn't anything more nice and gentle that will work with what's really happening.
What the hope is, I think, for them, or it, or whatever pronoun most fits, is that they can take the web of life out to its thinnest stretch, just grind everything down and eliminate all the accusing lives, turn them into commodities of grief - dispense with the higher mammals just as Ma Nature and her legal team have demanded they themselves be dispensed with - and then gather the fuel and tech necessary to jet-rocket themselves off-planet and go on to find some new world where they can do all this all over again.
They'll be doing this naturally with slaves and robots and all the fun and games of what until just a few cultural moments ago seemed like nothing more than loopy speculative fiction cliche but now looks like the grotesquely accurate description of an awful wreckage, which it is.
It is wonderfully helpful to believe in a greater metaphysical context to human living when confronted with this shit, helpful for the caught soul that can recognize its own complicity and the malevolence of what it's been co-operating with, helpful for it in the short term, which as with all short terms has a definite periodicity, a measurable span, a length past which it is no longer the short term in which that comfort is available, but becomes the now-ended fantasy you bought with your credulity and intentional softness.
Lots of eugenic platforms there but none on offer, sorry. No solution, no formula.
Like beauty - which I'm now convinced is the indisoluble and inevitable culmination of moral rightness - it's about recognizing it, opening to it, experiencing it within and without the self, holding to the will that would sacrifice for something higher, which is what we have to bring to the day as it comes in, but not exposing that to the detailed search of the enemy's drones, who will make of any logic and formula and solution that gets set out in those abstract neutral tones a new set of parameters for its own debased survival.
Which is the point. It's not an accident this trainwreck, it's the dinner preparation of a clot of ghouls. Seeing it as an accident is complicity, a seeking after comfort. A short-term response. They're in it for the long haul and so should we be.


Spit like rain:

I found myself herded against a brick wall as they kept on spitting - on my face, my hair, my clothes, my arms.
Anne Barker/ABC 07.Jul.09

el "fin del Estado de Derecho"

ante las autoridades judiciales:
Si lo hubiéramos dejado acá, ahorita estuviéramos enterrando un montón de gente, justificó el coronel.
La explicación de los militares, al menos del principal asesor jurídico del Ejército de Honduras, coronel Herberth Bayardo Inestroza, según los periodistas Carlos Dada y José Luis Sanz, del diario digital El Faro, es que “…después de que el presidente Zelaya, a la cabeza de una turba asaltó la Fuerza Aérea para llevarse un material que había confiscado el Ministerio Público, el comandante de la Fuerza Aérea tenía dos opciones: disparar a la muchedumbre o abrir los portones.

Uno como soldado mide qué pesa más, y eso en derecho se llama Estado de Necesidad. Aunque no nos gustó que se invadiera la Fuerza Aérea, el comandante tomó la decisión acertada. (…) Un día después, “la decisión de sacarlo a Costa Rica la tomamos nosotros como Fuerza Armada, la Junta de Comandantes. Medimos las consecuencias de lo que iba a suceder si nosotros lo dejábamos en el país. Medimos los riesgos y lo que podía suceder”, explica Inestroza.
El principal asesor jurídico del Ejército hondureño, el coronel Bayardo Inestroza, reconoció que los militares cometieron un delito al deponer al presidente Manuel Zelaya pero señaló que la cúpula militar tomó esa decisión "para evitar un derramamiento de sangre".
"En el momento en el que nosotros lo sacamos del país (a Zelaya) en la forma en que se sacó hay un delito. Lo que pasa es que ese delito, en el momento en que se conozcan las circunstancias en que se dio, va a haber una justificación y un eximente que nos va a proteger", afirmó en entrevista al diario hondureño La Prensa.

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