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Archive for March, 2011

by Emmett Smith

Here are some pictures, mostly from my nonage in St Paul and Minneapolis.  I rode with our mother in both kinds of the “Kid Cann” streetcars shown, mostly downtown to see “Santy Claus,” at Dayton’s, Power’s, Scheuneman’s department stores.  The streetcars were all done for by 1954, and the press marks through the Winter snow of their steel wheels on to the steel rails beneath (the polished tops before their complete vanishment out of my World just even with the tar or red pavers) struck me at three and five as something extraordinarily mysterious.  It was a track, parallel ones actually in the snow, the spoor (!) of the streetcars, something primevally urban and whiteman-like, as opposed to a family friend’s cabin on Lake Minnetonka, with mosquitoes and bogus “Indian” pots from Sears on the deck and that I did not (more…)

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posted by Bodwyn Wook

     [There was an exchange of views among friends on-line, on the question of Michael Huckabee, hick GOP Presidential contender & scandal to the Party Mormons; it was a matter of analysing the fascination among many of the American emotional underclass, with the Old Testament, the Jews and Israel.  The most basic aspect was to try to answer the question of what are these folks like?  Following is the definitive analysis in all succinctitude, by the amerophile E Raymond Farleigh-Smyth, Lord Jutland & Sevastapol — ed]

*****

“They smoke right inside the CAT scan and MRI machine; the males get up at night to pee a dozen, if not fifteen, times.”

[Lord Jutland & Sevastopal]

*****

My dad went into Belsen in May, 1945, a week or ten days after the British Army got in on the ground.

By the time he visited, the prisoners had had a chance to clean up and were clothed in garments boiled clean in kettles, from the SS warehouses that the army bulldozed open, and a proper medically careful re-feeding was underway. 
     At first, the English soldiers took horror and gave the prisoners all the food they could shovel down; a lot were killed on the spot by this as they couldn’t even digest the sudden normal volume of food, let along the thick army rations. 
     Then, the Salvation Army (!) set up proper kitchens and started in with eggs, oat porridge and weak tea.  Many of the prisoners spoke English, quite unlike the RAF types who didn’t have as much as ten words of French between them.  My dad said that an old man, a Czech, dropped dead on the spot in a clean too-big boiled suit, whilst thanking the aircrew and erks.  The Jews and other prisoners had been put through it by the Hun and, in the end, the ‘final solution’ was simply to let them starve behind the wire during the last two months of the war; I have read that even the SS commandant, Kramer, drove cursing around the Hannover countryside, trying to round up even rotten pototoes and swedes for the prisoners.  (This of course may have its origins in Kramer’s own stories, told to pad the record a bit on his own behalf.)
     At any rate, this sort of thing altogether makes entirely understandable the solid determination of Zionists to pull off the continued existence of the state of Israel; but, whether that iron resolve be right is intractably the other question.

The more usual historical ‘solution’ of course should have been to give Germany, and all of the Germans in it that weren’t already knocked in the head by the day-and-night bombing, to the survivors of the Nazis; and, loads of those potatoe-y women of theirs after the Russians were done with them.  If not a ‘final solution to the History problem’, that proceedings should have had at least the merit of being the more inapposite and, hence,  faithful to the General Pattern, however much an eternal dead-end.
     The great and growing human longing, of course, is for an end to the endless horror of our condition which is a physical, a biological and, as such, an insoluble question. 
     Religion in its deepest roots draws on this same longing and puts out its stories which, trumping the sheer deadliness of all ‘facts’, offer images of transcendence not otherwise available to the merely dreary and the drearily ‘realistic’.
     It is this same longing especially among all excluded psychological types all over the World that fuels so much of the revengeful fundamentalisms of religion; here, in the once-United States, in the case of the ‘trailercourt’ caravanserais and the country-western sometimes-foodstampers, this translates into (sometimes-frequently-repeated-to-get-it-just-right!) experiences of being ‘born again’.
     There is also, among the American Scotch-Irish types of all ethnic origins, no end of  ‘Jew envy’ and the actually likable Huckabee takes part to the hilt in this.  In all sincerity, be it added; and, as well,  there can be no doubt that jaded GOP senior Mormons — themselves the devout scions of an authentically quack, homegrown, wholly  American and adventitious, ‘gospel of prosperity’ — find themselves looking down on this stuff.  The trick for them in immutable disdain will be to conceal their cool fiduciary scorn long enough to rope in the Subliterate Vote of 2012.

This Tea Party-prone element in the GOP bobbittean calculus of machiavellian horror and murder without end remains a real problem.

They are the jacks of the political pack.
     They are volatile, doused in ‘Lite’ ‘Beer’ and methamphetamine, they listen to an emotionalist music (sic), and drive and shop and, sometimes, bowl for mental relief; all the while plying and plugging themselves up with intellect-blocking hydrogenated oils and corn syrup.  They smoke right inside the CAT scan and MRI machine; the males get up at night to pee a dozen, if not fifteen, times.  Regardless of these grim hopeless facts, they in fact consider themselves to be still the healthy, the unblemished lambs, and above all Good & Moral Heartwood of America. 
     In their own self-image, they are the only ‘true’ Americans.
     But in fact, the dietary damage by corporate industrial foodstuffs to the mentality as well as body is largely irreversible, and it comes on top of a third generation now of irremediably bad ‘education’.
     It is this table of fatally factual  historical deficits that demonstrates why the Under Republicans (so many of them good former Democrats!) are so subject to fads and kicks, and fantasies of a ‘Second American Revolution’.

Theirs above all is the envy of the over-looked child of God, for His chosen offspring; for now they yearn not ‘only’ for ‘justice’ for Israel, but for themselves indeed to be ‘Jews’; this last denouement indeed would be, in this congested theogony certainly, the apotheosis of divine election.

But Israel, as such, presents a tragic historical gesture, and one that to me at least that does not seem much possible of success in the longterm. 
     Of course it could be so. 
     ‘It could’. That is the common faith of blinkered religionist and liberal social experimenter alike.  We could — kismet — somehow, somewhen, somewhere, become better than we are.
     It is the same goal for visionary religion and politcal party all alike, and everywhere.
     So that as well Islam could, just as well, recover its inward balance and calm as the House of Peace on Earth and, albeit belatedly, welcome homebound Israelis without fear anymore, of dark dhimmitude.  Of course it could. 
     ‘It could’.
     Just as could these re-modelled Latter Day Republican ‘conservatives’ become — it would the first time in the history of this  non-Goldwater and ratbag Dry Country GOP! — the actual protagonists of individual liberty and real, diffuse, homely and deeply rooted entrepreneurial democracy.
     ‘They could’.

*****

Mostly, though, the heartbreaking books of History say ‘they’ didn’t — and, in remembrance of my dad’s stories of how tea-time late-modern antisemitism swept the English middleclasses in the 1930s, politely spoken in cool Dorset gardens under August beech and plane trees after the cricket, I see, now, that the American moral and mental low classes of post-modernity, all in a heartbeat in hot caravanserais under the Texas dog days sun, could in rage and disappointment turn on Jews, throw down their Bibles and take to gassing the wandering Mexicans & any passing Helping Professionals. 
     All in a heartbeat.

Especially if, as usual, Armageddon still does not get here.

*****

[Bodwyn Wook

[all rights revert to holders

[25 February 2011]

 

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by Bodwyn Wook, Literary Agent

The other day I had occasion to note that “[l]ast year there was a proliferation of ‘Libertarian’ websites obviously pitched by guys in their forties with chronic boners for pierced-pussy, aimed at ‘young people,’ complete with stale 1990s slang, and lots of that fuzzy-feelly old shit about ‘Live & Let Live,’ and averring that society (as well as “nonexistent!”) in any way, shape or form is the enemy of The Teenagers of ALL ages.  There was a lot of that Ayn Rand neurotic refusal-of-life stuff, about the ‘artistic’ and misunderstood individual which, naturally, is completely false to the adult reality, above all, of /communal liberty/.  For good or ill, that is the point and purpose of ‘a well-ordered militia,’ so blinkered & ‘ignerant’ rustics CAN kick the bastards out when they come prying around, with their leaky pipelines and shopping mauls, and corporate ‘organic’ wind generators and ‘farmer-owned’ (like Hell!) ethanol plants.”

An admiring reader was kindly to write in:  “This is pure art!”  It was no-end gratifying, not least because the lonely vigil & work of re-establishing an appropriately convoluted & arcane English prosody is a solitary calling; and, not-infrequently one is assailed for it by halfwitted limpidists & the frankly (more…)

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by A Dervish

An Illustrative Episode About Chronology & The Actual Human Situation
 
*****
 
“Ten years” seems to be short (although not enough to escape getting into a panic!); to a dog or cat, supposing they had, or needed adaptively, the capacity to be abstract about this, it would be “longer”.  [Naml Achmad MaHomat]
 
*****
 
The Sufi got in to trouble (“his ass in a sling'” ie) with The Sultan and was about to be decapitated and boiled in oil and drawn and quartered and, then, drowned in a burlap sack in the dye vats.  The Sultan was a man notably vain of his horsemanship and his stable.  He had a marvellous “high school” horse that also could do tricks, answer question with hoof taps and play up generally.
 
“Oh, King Of The Age!” cried The Sufi, throwing himself headlong in the dust on hearing his death sentence.  “Only give me the mercy of a year more of life, for if you do that, then, oh Master Of The Dawn & Despair Of The NeoCon Kaffirs, I will teach your noble steed to sing like an angel!”

“‘inshAllah!” blared The Sultan, “Only, by God, an a year go by with no accordions, I shall deal with you harshly (more…)

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by Bodwyn Wook

*****

“They are not alone.

“They are only the latest in that infinite parade of would-be Big Men in the World who have been stepping along now for the thousands of years, men now mostly and utterly forgotten in spite of it all, their crimes of brief “success” all lost in the universal forgetting with them.

“And, so, as they step along lively and pink and fit as little pigs, or roll in their wheelchairs brandishing with curses at their ‘illegal’ lowpaid attendants their air bottles, as they pile over the brink and in to the Pit of Hell…one and all…they are NOT alone.”  (Bodwyn Wook)

*****

Libya shows it’s an objective judgement:  Dick Cheney & Karl “Binky” Rove are a pair of historical failures, not to mention a couple of particularly unattractive and sly, but bungling and impatient, “children of this world.” 

Why so?

Because in terms of their own “I’m A Real Historically Important Guy!” game they have failed — 101 per cent.

And, now — we must remember the matter above all of timing in all successful policy — in the matter of any American victorious beau geste at all in Libya, we are fresh out of gas, completely exhausted beforetime and — now that the Huntingtonion hour is — wholly not-ready to liberate a people who plainly have taken the first steps on their own behalf.  So much for the fantasy of  “culture clash” as a basis for propagating anything in policy, except…some more of the horror of History. 

How so?

Well, let’s just forget about morality.  The morality of intervening in Libya even on behalf of the rebels, who in this case might actually be ready to welcome non-Mahometan forces, is just moot.  A libertarian principle of course is that if it’s wrong for an individual man or woman to do in the first place, then it’s wrong for a state — any state — to do in any place, or case; however, now that LPUSA has so obviously and painfully been bought by off the Grubby Old Party, that one is just plain not on.  And, as to any other excitingly adventurous and “real important” non-moral stab in to the night and fog of the Future, on the point of any decisive action at all in Libya we now are flat on our post-NeoCon ass.

So, what’s left?

Well, there is this NeoCon “Game of Machiavelli,” a game which arguably has its own morality, or rules anyway.  Both Cheney with his complex organ psychological inferiority, and “Binky,” who so wretchedly looks exactly like a Secret Catholic Priest type, rolled in the shit of career ambition in front of the Straussian piss altar to Machiavelli mis-studies all their lives long:

http://www.press.uchicago.edu/ucp/books/book/chicago/T/bo5960662.html

And, now, their whole-souled and, above all immensely vain and stupid, devotion above all to the “Noble Lie” and historical derring-do has failed.  Machiavelli, of course, as a protagonist of political realism at heart teaches that Thou Shalt Not Fail.  Or, anyway, that is what Cheney and “Binky” and the NeoCons gypsters all got out it — and, any way, they as a class and claque are all now flat on their ass.  In their treehouse boys’ “Bad Club” venture in to the darkness they have furthermore dragged us with them.

Again, how so?

Well, the desperate hunger of the historical “I” and “me” to get in to the books at all costs drove (more…)

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1848

by Bodwyn Wook

*****

‘[1848] was the beginning of the end of High Modernity in the North Atlantic.  Even revolution every fifteen years could not provide social room and opportunity any longer for the swelling demographic of middleclass expectancies….’  (Bodwyn Wook)

*****

[Mr Wook composed this true gem of historical meditation this morning, and after receipt of the following note from an American colleague:

[“I suppose you too have been ruminating about the 1848 Revolution.

[“It began in Naples, nobody noticed…then in Switzerland with no (outside) reaction.  But in March 1848 it reopened in Paris.  An instant hit!  Everyone wanted to join in.  It got so widespread that the Bavarian Royal Mistress, Lola Montez had to flee to Sacramento.  Where will it strike next?   My ol’ retired Foreign Service  buddy thinks only Arab places.  But I could imagine Belarus or Ukraine, Moldova , Wisconsin, or South America.”

[Of course the close reader of the following will note that not much is made, by Professor Wook at least, of that man on horseback, Louis Napoleon — after all, who ever could?  Emmett Smith — ed ]

*****

Perhaps lots more relevant to our immediate past, of course, is that the Supermarine Spitfire protoype K 5054 was first flown yesterday, in 1936, and that Hitler sent The Wienerwursts & Gestapofied (Cute No Longer!) Wiener Dogs back into the Rhineland to-morrow, again in 1936; the aircraft would play its decided part in the German loss of The Last European War, 1939-41 (John Lukacs, qv) which arguably began with this first Nazi specifically military display, on the eve of the civil proxy-war in Spain.
 

However, since as both The Baron and, I think, the Mad Poet Navarth will concur, ‘…everything since Waterloo is current events’, let us peek in at 1848.

*****

The chief difference is that the protogogues then were labour in growing conflict with an ascendant middle class at the close of High Modernity.  They had two revolutions under their belts, both of which they had (more…)

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posted by ‘Abd al-‘Abru

[Bodwyn Wook

[all rights revert to holders

2 March 2011]

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