Jingoism – Villanelle

A worthy offering. I am afraid I have gotten rather verbose in the comment section, however, as follows:  (and I believe I have done the reblog in such a way where the post below does not appear twice.  This, by means of a edit/copy/paste after the reblog was already done.)

Very interesting. More serious than your usual work, I see. This reminds me very much of the days–still here, I’m afraid, but also those long past…. The posters of the leader, or dictator everywhere. The loudspeakers barking away at all hours. This kind of writing gives me nightmares, (even when it’s me that does it.) but that means it’s good writing, and it works well.)

Regarding some of the “tweaking” suggestions, I believe I like your solution. Improving scansion (the flow and meter of lines, for those learning these terms)  is one thing but altering ones genuine sound is another. I personally like what you describe as your “Swinglish,” because it sets you apart from other poets. As you know, I am hardly satisfied with any result I achieve myself. I tend to engage in acts of “lucasing” over time, until I am happy with the result. So even after posting, you will often notice, I’m sure, that I tend to change a word or two.

Your subject matter brings to mind that the US has always been much different, I think, than this. Our brand of patriotism, even when rather extreme, has almost exclusively been regarding a love of freedom, and a fear of its disappearance. This is what I’ve felt, myself, and this is what my sweetheart has felt also since coming here permanently.

Our current administration causes us, for some reason, to differ from this in some ways. This, by the way, is not a political observation. One can debate a left or a right-leaning policy, and, whatever our position, and regardless of whether, in the long run, such policies turn out to be ill advised, such things can be weathered, as the country has weathered, I think, far worse things prior to the last handful of administrations here.

Strangely, what concerns me is not at all political. It is the pictures. There are images of our current president everywhere. Large, small, and in-between. Very unusual for this country. Very reminiscent of dictatorships we have seen around the world. Like the man, or not; agree with his ideas or not; this is what concerns me. And it concerns those of my friends who come from other countries. And I should say they do vary greatly in politics.

One friend describes it as a personality cult; and whereas I would perhaps not go that far, still this is most unusual. This did happen once before in the country to some degree, Some of us loved FDR, some didn’t, but most of us, were spooked by the personality phenomenon. The more we thought about it, the more spooked we were; which is why we were able to easily pass a term limit amendment for the President here. Two four-year terms, but not more than 10 years, in the case of a succession. President Ford, for example had two and a half years into his succession, had he won his first presidential election, which he did not, he would not have been able to run again.

Björn Rudbergs writings

I am playing around with different verse format. This time a Villanelle, I choose to write it in tetrameter. It is based on a prompt on twitter called liblit. and it was “a doll, and bonus word is Jingoism – “extreme patriotism”. Personally I find that very dangerous and there is usually a master behind that stand to gain from “patriotism”.
Picture is Carl Fredrik Reuterswärd’s famous sculpture on non-violence. Many copies exist, but this one is from Malmö Sweden. Picture is taken from Wikimedia commons.

a puppet master has control
the marching dolls they just obey
in jingoistic glory stroll

the masses they have lost their soul
and they will never walk astray
a puppet master has control

the patriots are screaming: “troll”
and herd the actors in the play
in jingoistic glory stroll

the leader people can cajole
and also violence display
a puppet master has control

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We help each other with…

…likes. The fact is, sometimes we just click “like.” It does not actually mean we ‘like.’ It does not mean we actually have read. Still, it does mean something. We do this. We perform this action for each other–fellow bloggers. We do this, in part, because we hope that our blogger friends–as well, we hope that we–through the long chain of bloggers connected to other bloggers, will be connected with those who will appreciate their special brand of comment or insight.

Regardless of our art or position or our views on anything in particular, we seem to care for one another in our quest to be heard by those who would appreciate our work, or comments, or views. At least at this low level of notice, none of us seem to be concerned with whether or not we understand or relate to a message. We seem all to be friends regardless. On this day, which is a day of thanks in the United States, it seems appropriate.

Both Statist-Communists and Anarcho-Capitalists Fall in Love

(oft-times with each other :  )

This short post is in response to an off-line question; and this, however cryptic, is the answer to why I will no longer post political asides, regardless of subject, on this blog.  In essence, such subjects are decisive, whereas Love, and Related Topics ™ bring people together, make them closer, cause them to understand one-another.

Increase the Minimum Wage! Wait, why’s my Happy Meal thirty-four bucks? | The Liberal Critique

I find in the Pacific NW (where we indeed do have a higher state minimum) I have not met an entry level employee who actually does receive this wage. I am a very talkative old codger, and I have found that even teenagers at McDonald’s (which I must admit is my favourite food) do not receive even this higher minimum wage. Their starting wage tends to be higher still. The managers there have informed me that it would be difficult to find suitable employees at the state minimum.

Perhaps there is or was some purpose for such a regulation, but if there is, I cannot fathom what it is. Admittedly this is not my area of expertise; however perhaps there are migrant workers that receive this wage? I have generally been under the impression that such workers most often work “off the books” so to speak.

I might suspect that it is best when–as seems to be the case now–the minimum wage is set below what virtually all employers must offer as a starting wage.

via Increase the Minimum Wage! Wait, why’s my Happy Meal thirty-four bucks? | The Liberal Critique.

Furthermore, even at this low minimum wage it would not be so difficult for one to have a good life for a time until something better comes along or one works up to a more favourable position in life.

I know this for a fact because Mrs. Emeron and I choose to live with room-mates.  We have a rather large house and it is full to the brim.  Even if we were much more financially well off, we would choose to have a full house–though admittedly this is not for everyone.  My point here is that with what we are paid for rent (which includes all utilities and many many extras, and which is a competitive rate–on the low side, but still “in the ball park,” as it were–minimum wage is more than enough to have many many “extras” in life…  even if one has no further ambition.  This is true even if one does not apply for state aid (even if one qualifies, which many would choose not to do.)

The fact that such people may be state subsidised even though it is not truly necessary is more of an indictment of socialism than anything else.  Just as, for example, is the case of the “seatbelt/helmet law” issue.  The assertion “It is my life,” is perfectly true even when society claims ones life for its own, and therefore makes the argument that such compulsion is “for your own good, and/or that of society.”  I realise I have changed the subject here in midstream, but even so, it is the same type of issue.  By all means, wear the thing.  Drive as safely as if you were not wearing it, as well.  However such compulsion by the state is “soul-sucking,” and I believe even its advocates know this, even when they feel it is a necessary evil.

But evil it is:  Pure evil for ones life–ones soul, if you will permit the indiscretion–to be claimed by others for good or ill.  I believe the deep seated knowledge of this is the cause of the great malaise that has long settled over this and many other lands.   Such a claim even robs generous people of the act of charity such as they might wish to impart.  And I see hard-working and/or extremely brilliant people dropping out of their chosen fields frequently and choosing to work menial jobs instead.

I may choose that life myself any day now.  I keep thinking I would be more happy if I kept my expertise  for those I choose, for myself, and/or for those I love.  To be truthful, it does feel like the more honest course to me.  I believe those of us who feel this way might be more happy sharing or trading our expertise among ourselves…

Oh…   but I do go on, do I not?

First they ignore you, then they mock you, then they fight you, then you win.

M.K. Gandhi while serving in the Ambulance Cor...

M.K. Gandhi while serving in the Ambulance Corps during the Boer War (1899) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Gandhi is purported to have said something of the sort.

Since the term “liberal” was co-opted by marxists in the early 20th century, and the term “libertarian” has more or less taken on the meaning that it used to have, I have noticed a few things:

First, that libertarianism, for many decades, has been ignored–barely a blip on the national radar, so to speak.

Second, that something has changed regarding these erstwhile liberals now called libertarians.  They have moved well away from obscurity, and in the last five years, seem to have moved rapidly through the mockery stage.  Naturally this type of mockery indicates fear–but this is another issue altogether.

Now, however, libertarians, individualists, (classical) liberals–call them what you may–are being actively fought.  This is quite a change, considering that a mere 10 years ago such people seemed to have been settled into the obscurity phase of the Gandhi quote (paraphrase, or misquote.)  I can only feel encouraged by this as I feel individual liberty is of paramount importance: and not just to me, but to everyone–even the enemies of such liberty.

If one scans the posts in the WP reader tagged “libertarian,” one might find about three hit pieces for every one genuine libertarian blog post.  This, at least, is what I found in my admittedly short, non-scientific sample.  In any case, such is not a group of posts that can be “followed” blindly, by any means.

The enemies of individual liberty taking part in these attempts at disinformation, denigration, obfuscation, or misdirection should perhaps take heed that stage 4 of the Gandhi attributed quote (paraphrase, &c) is just around the corner.

And having clicked on the above article, I was quite amazed at the synchronicity of another article which begins with the very same Gandhi  reference–perhaps properly quoted and sourced.  The above article is of course based on more concrete examples of this, rather than the result of my own proclivity for pattern recognition.  I did not include more related articles because I did not think my whimsical little article warranted vetting them all–especially since only one in three is a genuine….

Well… you get the idea, I think.

Idiots with Loud Voices | Inner Organs

An answer here to an unasked question in the very thoughtful post which links below:

I enjoyed this post quite a bit, young sir.  I enjoy a well-reasoned essay, even if on an emotionally charged subject.  Yours is a very well reasoned point of view.  “But wait!” as Ron Popeil says, “There’s more.”

In these matters, our problem, in a very general sense–and by “our” I mean virtually all of us excepting those few who have received a proper education–and I do not number among them, although I wish I did.  Virtually all of us do not know how to research a topic properly; and by research I mean “study,” because, as a scientist, I consider research to consist of experiments and theories one investigates and tests oneself, first-hand.  Still, not splitting that particular hair, whether one calls it research or study, one must know where to look.  When one hears that Microsoft, or Apple, or Monsanto, or Greenpeace are the Devil incarnate, one must, in general (if one knows how) make a valiant attempt to see if this theory can be DISproven, not proven.  Scientists disprove theories, and when they cannot do so using any and all proper methodologies, then they begin to think that perhaps the theory–at least for lack of a better one–might be correct.  Because of my background, I often do both that “research” which I deem “study” and that which I perform and devise first-hand.

The fact that almost all of us do not know how to do this, is not our fault (until we well and truly become aware of how and why this is the case and choose not to self-correct this mal-education, only then do any of us share some blame.) 150 years, or thereabouts, of marxist and proto-marxist education theory is responsible for this as well as many other deficits in all aspects of our ability to think.

If one investigates these “hotbutton” issues using the proper portals and even using both research and study, if possible, one often finds–and I must even go so far as to here state that one usually finds–that the lemmings are running toward or away from the cliff for no reason at all; or more accurately, that quite often one finds (as in the actual case of the lemmings themselves) that some version of Uncle Walt was up there on top of the cliff with a bin full of lemmings and a snow shovel.

So the first thing we have to do, is have a look on top of the cliff and see if he’s still up there with an empty bin, leaning on his shovel, having a smoke break, so to speak.  And barring that, we see if we find lots of tiny scrabbling footprints, as one might expect to find, or a few large bootprints, some tire-tracks, and a half-dozen cigarette butts.

via Idiots with Loud Voices | Inner Organs.