Middle of what - the American experiment, western civilization, human progress? How about the middle of geologic earth with billions of years yet to come?…
…is the title of my upcoming Zoom address, July 12th, 2020 for the Unitarian Universalists of Grants Pass, Oregon. I’m brewing it in my mind and heart and gut, something about all the fear and troubles we’re facing and the “lions, and tigers, and bears, oh, my!” (Hint: my eldest son and I did a 5 hour hike where we saw a big black mother bear and her two large black cubs, and we’re not only okay, we’re honored. Same for all the upheaval and fears; we’re okay. My impending talk will address this kindly and creatively, I hope and anticipate.)
But, hurried at the last minute of a busy month (for various reasons I won’t write here) I had to use a photo of my living room to go with this hurried entry. It’s entitled “House Humidifier” for the way I dry my clothes while serving another earth-friendly purpose. It’s the least I can do for Mother Earth while trying to live an ethical life in the modern mayhem. Look close to see what I mean.
Instead of a well-thought-out entry analyzing how what I tend to say for fifty years from the pulpit is all in our face (and not in a nice way) with Covid-19 and Trump and global warming and all (like I’ve tried to say to my congregants as if they were America and would understand and agree, and that would somehow explain or fix it) I’ll post here a copy/paste of the interchanges I’ve gotten involved with in May and June in on-line forums. (Sometimes I use my stage name, Byrd.)
In other shorter words, here’s some of the comments and snark I’ve gotten into these last two months. (Only read on if you like and can put up with such back-n-forth and the haphazard way I try to notate who is saying what on which forum. See especially the exchange with old blues guy Watermelon Slim, below.) Otherwise, try to join the live Zoom meeting July 12th, 10:30 AM (Pacific Time. If needed, email me for the link, for I don’t have it to post here now.) Here’s what I’ve publicly written recently:
Byron says (May and June, 2020) . . .
Byrd on KOS re: Black Panther on KOS
I also admired Black Panther, both for the emotional strength of the story and the incredible animations. Like you with Bury … I as a teen was thrown by All Quiet on the Western Front when I realized the protagonist wasn’t one of “us;” he was German, caught up in that kill-or-be-killed predicament. I tried to read The Historical Atlas of Native Americans but couldn’t for the repetitive moral atrocities. Now I’m reading Oliver Stone and Peter Kusnik’s Untold History of the U.S. It clearly shows how persistently the conservative character of our politics has ruined any hope of world peace and domestic mutuality. As Trump overrules the states, commanding the meat-packers go to work, while protecting the corporations from any liability for their illnesses and deaths, having earlier failed to mobilize the PPE and ventilators, I realize the truth of brother Louis Farrakhan’s accusation of “white devils.” Whatever goodness lives in typical Americans has been trounced by the stubborn sociopaths among us who have deliberately and successfully taken over. Whether “America” goes the way of Donald Trump or Steven Colbert remains to be seen.
Obviously, how we live is more important than merely living. If the world population bulge adopts U.S. habits, we’re ecologically doomed. But if we live simply that others may simply live, we could also live better. Shelter, safety, community, healthy food, long fulfilling lives are goods not needing the waste and exploitation of our current and changing habits. We need realistic visions of mutual betterment for all humans and nature. How we live should be in synergistic investing in cycles of betterment for all, not in exploitation and exhausting of resources and lifetimes to enrich a few beyond what they can enjoy.
Byrd on KOS
To Rita5018 re Trumps “…willing to take that risk.”
As he toured the mask plant, refusing to wear one, the music blared “Live and Let Die.” And so, he does, tested daily while we who need tests can’t get them.
He’s willing to take a risk with other people’s lives, not his.
5/6/2020 – 12:44 PM
I was the victim of a scam that your debit card service flagged and shut down my card. Unclear to me is whether a new card is in the works or if I have to initiate that? Autopay recipients are complaining about the crashed old card. Please advise. Thanks.
5/10/2020 – 11:09 AM
Hello from Umpqua, This is your requested security alert notification. A secure message was received from your financial institution in online banking on 5/10/2020 11:09 AM. As a reminder, you can manage your alert preferences in online banking under the “Settings” menu. If you didn’t make this request, please call us right away at 1-866-486-7782 or send us a secure message within online banking. Please do not reply to this message, as it is an automated notification. Thanks for banking with us!
5/10/2020 – 11:09 AM
Hello! Thank you for contacting Umpqua Bank Customer Service. We are sorry to hear there was fraud associated with your card. A replacement card has not been ordered. Please verify your mailing address with us and the last four digits of the restricted card and we will be happy to order a new card. If you have any further questions and for immediate assistance, please feel free to contact us at the number listed below. Thank you for banking with us and have a wonderful day! Teri- Customer Service 866-486-7782 Monday – Friday 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Saturday – Sunday 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. PT
5/11/2020 – 9:16 AM
I resent Umpqua Bank for your slow, ambiguous, non-service. It took four days for you to reply to my query on whether Umpqua automatically starts a new debit card for me upon knowing the old one was crashed, only to receive an ambiguous instruction to submit my card’s last numbers and other information – to where? to the phone number supplied so I can wait, hearing annoying music and delay announcements, to navigate through a phone tree? reply to your instructions via these messages (which the first message from you alerting me to the crashed card instructed me to NOT respond to in this way)? Now almost a week has gone by, some of my accounts are past due and cancelled, and all I have is a confusing note that still doesn’t start a new card. Do I send the required numbers via this message device or by phone? Please respond quickly; I can’t get a new debit card from my own bank (“The World’s Greatest Bank”, so-called) until someone does.
In response to CT article on impending massive Mammouth Solar Farm in NV, whether such PV array would be harmful to the desert environment.
Given the climate situation, the technical realities, the economic realities, and especially the political realities, I really don’t want to give anyone anywhere a reason to debate, argue, slow-down, delay, or defer “until we know more” the urgent and massive deployment of wind and solar worldwide. Let it kill the fossil business model completely cold, and then we can uninstall certain sites if necessary (far easier and more feasible task than cleaning up the alberta tar sands mess that will be toxic for centuries). Renewable remains a very fragile situation on a knife-edge and doesn’t take much push to sustain the status quo.
Coal was a giant environmental improvement over burning forests, and natgas was an improvement over coal, and solar is an improvement over natgas.
Ultimately, this scale up of solar will lower costs and improve panel efficiency to the point in the hopefully near future where industrial scale solar will be unnecessary.
Or we could go the other way, protect whaling jobs by returning to burning whale oil for our reading lights. The price of whales would go up as the supply goes down. /s
We are successfully replacing unethical, polluting, expensive gas/oil/coal with clean and free (other than building, installing, and maintaining) energy – as in intelligently harvesting the ongoing gift of wind and sunlight.
Would that Trump have this in his heart and mind, as the article implies he might!
Trump is 95% bad.
5 percent good? Where does that show?
We hate and laugh and cry at him. Hate for all the wrong things he tries to do, and laugh at all the failures from a comically inept administration. Finally we cry for the children in cages and the unnecessary pandemic deaths
Trump trying to stop renewable energy is as futile as King Canute commanding the tide not to come in. Renewables are much cheaper than coal, and about to become cheaper than natural gas. Utilities are driven to cut costs like every other business, so they are doing the rational thing no matter what Donnie says.
Unlike King Trump, King Canute knew he was being facetious standing in the rising tide, commanding it not to rise. He wasn’t denying reality; he mocked even his own kingship as being more powerful than Nature.
Same day, same article:
You know, many conservatives who support Trump also support renewable energy. It’s unfortunate that you have to take every opportunity to alienate your readers who favor small, limited government and solar power. One day you might want us on your side.
You’ll receive kickback here because of all else conservatives are doing lately.
Just how conservatives conserve anything other than the right to profit at any cost (to others) and weakening our needed and able government – eludes me.
But your point is valid. Those who favor small, limited government can and do also care for our only home. If Trump and conservatives were to promote such solar advances as described here, we should welcome that.
Same day, same article:
There aren’t enough remaining conservatives left. That’s why the GOP moved on years ago.
If you look at the conservative movement of the past, it does not look at all like the GOP of today. Today Nixon and Goldwater would both be RINOs.
Agreed. The Party of Lincoln?
Same day, same article:
The author apparently fell for Trump propaganda. We got one big business solar plant through. Yay. Where would we be with a real president? Much further along with electrification, and renewable energy production, and of course WITH the 100 important environmental rules he gutted.
Agreed. But this project is a start. Positive reinforcement sways behaviors. Conservatives and Republicans won’t always be as stubbornly stupid as their faction has become lately. How to welcome their help when appropriate?
5-14-20 to KOS forum on thugs with guns confronting state capitols
Byrd on KOS
Frank Schaeffer (who was raised a super-Christian in the family at the core of the initial co-opting of conservative Christians by right-wing Republicans) rebelled and wrote exposes of their foolishness. Here, he rants against Trump urging on the armed protesters storming capitols.
He helps redeem Christianity from utterly dismal, dangerous disaster. We need more brave, responsible Christians to help reclaim our religion and country from fanatical thugs.
More on KOS regarding Michigan extremists:
I admire Governor Whitmer’s clarity and caution. She speaks back to Trump, which he resents.
But she’s in a bind. Those “protesters” are what I call “attacking with defensiveness.” Were there to be a shoot-out, they’d mythologize it for years, claiming they were patriotic heroes defending their freedom. No matter how shallow and stupid such armed rhetoric is, it sways those eager to show how brave and loyal they are in “taking back their country.” Anti-government cynicism devolves into divisive chaos.
All this to defend themselves from temporary social safety measures and vague, unnamed regulations? Trump and his minions (and cowed party) are deliberately attacking our government, society, and environment. They are utterly and entirely anti-American. It’s an in-your-face assault on America, but believed to be bravely patriotic. Meanwhile, it serves Putin, the NRA’s gun-makers, and Trump’s growing worldwide fascist cabal.
How is this “well-regulated,” as the Second Amendment requires?
Same day, to CT on Musk overly riling tweet
I wish the Second Amendment were enforced as intended, especially the “well-regulated” part. Just how is it currently well-regulated?
Steve, I like your bright writing and passionate values. But I suspect you’re defensively caving into overblown cult-worship accusations when you write, “a self-important jerk who believes he can defecate in the middle of a crowded room.” This is insulting hyperbole.
Rather, Musk is a person admired for his accomplishments towards his “massively transformative purpose,” then reviled because he’s liked. Everyone who likes what he gets done isn’t a hero “worshipper.”
In this era of the wild, wild, west popping up in all sorts of tweets and forums, he blabbed off about starting up his Fremont plant in ways that also try to provide safety measures. That isn’t pooping in a room, it is in not comparable to Trump’s madman tweets, and it doesn’t warrant rejecting his cars.
9:02 p.m., Thursday May 14
eveee replying to me, wrote:
Yes, lets remember. Musk is a person. A human. With faults. Not a figure of hero worship and cult of personality.
Were you OK with this disgusting statement attacking millions of American citizens, by a person (Hillary Clinton 2016) seeking election as CEO of the United States federal government, “To just be grossly generalistic, you can put half of Trump supporters into what I call ‘the basket of deplorables.’ Right?”
Were you OK with this disgusting statement attacking millions of American citizens , by a person (Barack Obama 2008) seeking election as CEO of the US federal government, “They get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren’t like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations.”
What you call disgusting I see as descriptive. While outrage has been directed at her and him for saying so, the behaviors they noted have since gotten worse, dangerously so.
Is there no disgust allowed for fanatics pushing guns in our faces along with shouted spit? I’m okay with Hillary and Obama saying so; I’m not okay with what they describe.
I deplore what Trump and his ilk are doing to America. When they wrap that sort of patriotism in our flag, it’s really sedition. Our government, society, and environment are all suffering. Yet we should protect their feelings and not say so?
5-22-20 to CT forum on Solar Powered Konark Sun Temple in Odisha, India
India’s many solar projects are impressive and hopeful. Admirable for a poorer country to be both ethical and economic. Fitting that a sun temple uses sunlight for its needs.
The self-contained off-grid applications are interesting. More could be done with these, I surmise.
5-26-20 to New York Time re their front page and graphic showing of the 100,000
Ashland, Oregon | Pending Approval
The New York Times helps redeem the tarnished and undermined role of journalism with this stark report. It tells the truth by comparing the total numbers to war tragedies while it shows such numbers as persons.
But Stalin’s supposed comment that one person’s death is a tragedy while millions a mere statistic is renewed in the critics of this page dismissing all these actual people as if natural deaths exaggerated into politicized opportunism.
None of these needless deaths and all the related cost, loss, and grief touches their sympathy or morality, not even the babies and young adults suddenly dying of this bizarre and dangerous new disease.
They’ll ridicule those wearing masks as gullible dupes instead of admitting the mask doesn’t just selfishly help protect the wearer, it helps protect others. This both helps prevent the spread of this invisible, insidious little virus to others, should it have been unknowingly picked up, and it is a cautious and polite reassurance to others even when it has not been picked up. It’s an act of civility.
Instead, backed by the menace of their guns, some will irately shout their spit into others faces as if a patriotic act of freedom, self-righteously flaunting their political position. Such conservatives are incautious and uncivil. While they’ll ridicule this report, I appreciate the Times for reporting the truths of the truth.
6-2-20 to KOS on Senator Wyden’s calling Trump a fascist close to declaring war on Americans
Byrd on KOS
Reply to DaydreamSteve
I’m proud of both my Oregon senators: Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley. In this age of cynicism and apathy towards politicians in (supposedly) our democracy, let’s praise, protect, and promote the good ones. There are other good senators and congressional representatives.
Also, we have easy mail-in voting in Oregon and less annoying deluges of mean and stupid political ads. I feel sorry for those in crucial states enduring the anti-democratic antics of Republican cheats. If Americans don’t vote Trump and his menace party out this year, America is dead.
Same day to other KOS thread on “one of my senators” (Wyden) also praising Gov. Brown:
Byrd on KOS
Yes to all, and even our local state senator and representatives, Jeff Golden and Pam Marsh, and even our local city councilpersons. At our small town (about 22,000) Ashland, Oregon, after the very moving Sunday demonstration of towards a thousand, where besides the speeches and chants, we all took a knee for almost 9 minutes of utter silence. After, I ran into our chief of police. He had respectfully taken part and was touched by it to near tears, as was I. There was no riot requiring heavily armed storm troopers; there was only trans-racial community. Similar huge and peaceful protests played out all over Oregon.
Wake up!! There has been a slow rolling coup d’etat going on for 40 some years now. It’s the same elements of the 2% that fucked it up in 1934. Read our history and foul find that there is an American Fascist Movement consisting then in ’34 of the Mellons, Rockefellers, the robber barons, etc., and the ownerners of the corporations that made up the then Military Industrial Complex (MIC). Same sort now, with a new crop added; Backsters, Wall Street speculators, and for the most part corporate America. The (MIC) took over the Pentagon and Congress years ago. The domestic police, prosecutors, and courts have been sabotaged by the police unions. The courts are politicized corporations along with much of government entities around the country. Yep! We are in final throes of a coup d’etat. Next on the list of attacks by these people are the call for the Insurection Act to establish Marshall Law and the suspension of the Constitution. It will be attributed to Barr, Esper and Gen.
Milley. The Great American Con.
Byrd on KOS
old and in the way
This slow-motion coup d’etat is older than forty years, and it includes sudden unaccountable and unstoppable acts, like JFK got. “In your face, JFK! In your face, America!”
Ike’s Military Industrial Complex originally included another C: Congressional, as current Republicans are blatantly demonstrating. The Party of Social Security has been outmaneuvered by The Party of Anti-social Insecurity. Our government, society and environment are all under sustained, proactive attack.
With vague badges on highly-armored, police-looking soldiers “defending” Trump and blasting their way into the demonstrators — who’s to say who ordered this or who’s in charge? We endure an increasingly militarized government. If this gets swiftly worse, which military, police, or authority would be able to control this mad-man king?
If he orders war on Iran or on us, who’s to stop him?
RICK STEVE’S EUROPE: “Rewatching The Story of Fascism in Europe”
In 2018 I produced a special called The Story of Fascism in Europe, driven by the parallels I saw between our current political reality & the climate in 1930s Europe that gave rise to Hitler & Mussolini. – Rick Steves
You and 1 Recommend
Byrd on KOS
I’m proud of Rick Steve for daring to depart from his friendly and informative travel series to show this timely warning.
This is becoming intolerable. Every citizen who cares about the condition and future of our country should ensure personal voter registration this year and ensure a vote is cast this November to throw the bums out of office (yes, that means replacing these Republican bastards with Democrats). DO IT OR RUE IT!
You and 1 Recommend
Byrd on KOS
If ever there was a time to extensively urge former non-voters to register and vote, this is it.
I agree with my senator here. Nameless armed men in uniforms following orders from sociopathic leaders is the antithesis and undoing of America.
Senator Jeff Merkley
· Jun 3
This picture really troubles me. Armed forces in the nation’s capital, appearing to have been stripped of all badges and name tags—making them totally unaccountable to the people—is something I’d expect to see from a dictatorship, not a democracy. twitter.com/dfriedman33/st…
Completely unmarked officers in riot gear holding protesters blocks away from the White House. No badges. No insignias. No name tags. Nothing. Refused to tell us who they’re with. #DCprotest #DCprotests
Using facial recognition and other investigative means, these nameless, unaccountable soldiers should be identified, and whatever agency that hired and posted them should be exposed. If innocent, okay. But if it goes back to Trump or Prince or Bannon or Putin? We should know
6-9-20 to The Gut Solution
I appreciate your offerings here. Rather than listen to long videos with no way to fast forward to relevant information, I’d prefer to read the pertinent information. I get impatient. I hope the earlier-offered book does this. (I don’t see it offered on this page.) The videos are pleasant, but slowly pertinent. I’m also leery of signing up for updates and pushing things on my social media. As commercially-connected web pages go, I find those of Ocean Robbins better, but, please no time-occupiers to often have to deal with.
6-9-20 to KOS on Kushner Under Bus?
Yes. The reason this headline is bullshit is that Trump has no other options. Kushner has fallen into myriad leadship roles because he’s the only person that Trump won’t fire and the only one who will stick around while Trump fucks everything up.
Who else could Trump get to head up his campaign? No one is going to take the job. So it stays with Kushner by default.
Steve Bannon, Sean Hannity, Stephen Miller, Steve King…..
Lucifer, Satan, Beelzebub, Epstein.
Byrd on KOS
Byrd on KOS
Macchiavelli would jump ship from Trump. He counseled his prince that any ruler (and by that, in his time, he meant political entity) who does not expand his sway must eventually suffer entropy and inevitably be overrun.
Macchiavelli, being a sharp observer, would clearly see that Trump is out of control, and largely responsible for the multiple crises his nation faces domestically and internationally.
After having democracy explained to him (“Niccolo, there is no prince, king, queen, emperor, or anything like that ruling in the Western World”-— which of course would also have to be explained to him, inasmuch as Columbus had not yet sailed till Macchiavelli was 25), Old Nick would throw up his hands in frustration and become a counselor to Chairman Xi.
Byrd on KOS
But Machiavelli’s advice to lie and kill in service to the Prince’s vision of the State would fit the Rove/Trump/Bannon/Murdoch methods.
Plus, Trump has expanded his power despite ample complaints. He even has a new armored but anonymous Police Force and a new uniformed Space Force.
He holds up a Bible, as if honoring The Prince of Peace, but in fact lives by Machiavelli’s cunning immoral advice to The Prince.
Byrd on KOS
I enjoyed reading The Prince. And your first point is hard to argue with. But I think he’d see that Trump was headed for the dustheap, especially when it was explained that according to the Rules of Ruling currently applicable (remember, we’ve already explained to Nick that there is a New World on the other side of the ocean, and things have changed greatly since Macchiavelli died in 1527 and came back to life to hear this explanation), Trump can only be potentate for 4 more years, and that it is impossible to have an emperor, king, or dictator (he won’t even know the word till it’s explained) in this new country named after his countryman Amerigo Vespucci.
Naahh, he’d jump ship and go somewhere else, seeing that absolute rule over all these citizens was impossible even if you kill a whole bunch of them. The Chinese are much easier prey.
Byrd on KOS
“Trump can only be potentate for 4 more years” — Please, no, aughh! Four more years would be the death of the country named for Amerigo.
Would the “Greatest Generation” who helped defeat Hitler let a mini version rule? Wouldn’t that be spitting in their face with what they once fought?
As to China, I have some criticisms, but I admire their advancing alternative energy gathering means (their solar panels are helping reduce fossil fuel waste worldwide) and their rapid adoption of electrified cars, trucks and other transport. They’re inscrutable but not utterly evil.
Byrd on KOS
We were talking about Old Nick, and having some fun. I told some people here in a post (I do my published writing at opednews dotcom) that if you want a revolution, the two most important things that you must keep are hope, and your sense of humor.
I do kinda agree with you about China. They have 4 times our population, and if our politics is confused, imagine what the real situation in China is. You might almost say that in a geographical space of a certain size holding that many people, the great majority still living 3-4 to a room (I have no idea what passes for drinking water in Beijing, Wuhan, or any of the other Chinese megalopoli), individual freedom such as our Founding Fathers conceived it, and such as people from right to left (mostly right) still babble about, just disappears.
I don’t think they are necessarily evil. But I can’t trust what they say, because I can’t read Chinese. All that we Americans really can do is watch what they do. I don’t feel any enmity to China, it’s just like the US, a political complex of facts over which I have no control or evidence.
But you alluded to the Greatest Generation. My father was one of those. In 1938, a Harvard student at 17, he was invited, along with a number of other selected Ivy League students, to visit Nazi Germany by Hitler’s personal secretary, Putzi Hanfstaengl, a Harvard man in the earlly part of the century.
Dad knew very quickly that he would have to fight the Nazis. In June 1941, before America would enter the war, he crossed into Canada, got on a ship for England, and was commissioned in the Royal Navy. He did convoy escort in the North Atlantic for more than two years, and eventually returned to America, joined OUR Navy, and fought at the Anzio Beachhead.
He was a gentle, courtly man,a very famous criminal defense attorney (he defended in the first case of a doctor accused of homicide by abortion after Roe v Wade) but he died as he lived, an unsparing foe of Nazism.
And so am I. It’s generational. I won’t fucking put up with them. My MA Thesis was the first published academic work (2000) on the case of the Oklahoma City Bombing, and I was, of course, correct that it was neoNazis in a place on the Oklahoma/Arkansas border called Elohim City, who coordinated with Timothy McVeigh in the couple of months before the bomb went off.
The FBI and BATF had finalized plans for a frontal assault on the heavily armed White Supremacist/Christian-Identist compound, but in the most abject act of cowardice I ever heard about from a law enforcement agency, they aborted the March 1995 assault on the grounds that they might end up taking heavy casualties.
Well, duuhhh!! That’s what you joined the FBI for, right, to be ready to take the most effective action in defense of your country, right!?
Figures in Elohim City— Robert Millar, Dennis Mahon (now serving 40 years in Cali for a letterbomb attack on a black public official)— had been planning for such an attack since the Nazi-descendant group Der Bruder Schweigen (The Silent Brotherhood) was smashed and several members were executed for their crimes.
In 1972, I was a member of the Vietnam Veterans Against the War (VVAW), and we brothers had traveled in 3 convoys— west coast, east coast, middle— to Miami for the Republican National Convention. 8 of our brothers had been arrested during the Democratic Convention and charged with conspiracy to disrupt the Republican Convention.
VVAW was supposed to be the “radical group” the Democrats were conspiring with, thereby justifying the Watergate Breakin. The government case was completely whole cloth, made up by a troubled vet who decided to become an FBI informant (we were acquitted in 20 minutes of jury deliberation, lol).
But to the point: the convoys converged and reached our deestination, Flamingo Park, where the antiwar movement was staging its activities. Literally within minutes of my getting out of my van, non-vet people came and told us that Nazis had taken over the stage in the antiwar movement’s area.
When we got there from our parking lot, we found about 25-30 neoNazis (they were from the National Socialist White Peoples’ Party, the American Nazi Party renamed after the death of George Lincoln Rockwell) on a 24-foot flatbed, making angry noises.
There were perhaps 900 VVAWs there. We figured the best thing to do was completely separate the crowd from the Nazis, so we made two cordons: one all the way around the trailer keeping the crowd a distance of 50 feet or so away, and another cordon at the edge of the trailer, who would do the removal of the Nazis when, as we sighed and agreed would happen, we had to take them out of Flamingo Park.
I was part of the inside cordon. When a Nazi swung a chair at a brother, that was it, and we removed the Nazis within about 15 minutes. In the melee, one Nazi kicked me in the shin with his jackboot. Most of the Nazis went pinioned out the front gate. This one I threw over the back fence.
I bear the scar proudly today, for me, for my father (who was the only civilian attorney ever to go to Vietnam to defend in a capital case), for my brothers, and for all defenders against fascism wherever that virus raises its head.
I hope that I have not bored you, Mr. Byrd. I have lived a historically conscious life since I came back from Vietnam in 1970. My life has had meaning. I hope to say that my death will too.
Jean-Paul Sartre, a fighter in the French Underground (maquis) against the Nazis, said, after the war: “The only rational response to imminent defeat is resistance.” I take that very seriously at 71.
”Ring the alarum bell! Blow wind, come wrack!
At least we’ll die with harness on our back!”
__Macbeth, and he was a villain
I was in the VVAW during that time, Slim. Although the FBI plant was quickly exposed as a provacateur (who didn’t even suceed in provoking) once the case went to court, the damage was significant, as we no longer trusted each other. Progressive movements today would do well to study the ways that the left of the 60s and 70s was suppressed as it were surreptitously.
Thanks for shouting out, saevans! The pitiful provocateur’s name was William Lemmer, who was a grunt with the Americal Division.
The end of the war, and the opportunism of the Communist-sect orgs were also main factors in the eventual moving away from our first and essential mission.
Many of us are gone, ofcourse; at 71 I’m one of the younger members. I am still an elected co-coordinator of the VVAW, but not the antidemocratic Chicago chapter that has become known as VVAW Incorporated. We have one project we still support, down in Tijuana, helping deported Vietnam veterans re-achieve living status as Americans.
Byrd on KOS
You can be rightly proud of your father’s and your involvement. Slim He’s a sort of Atticus, which types we should support and protect.
The only internal threat to our beloved America comes from the right wing. All this hype about left-wingers … what left wingers?
If the left were to armor up as much as the right has done already, we’d quickly have gun-control.
I’m not for that. I’m for what you and your father have done — and those women, men and children are doing now in the streets.
Fucking brilliant Slim. So …. have you written the book yet and if not WHY NOT. We want to read it . In fact if I weren’t both skint and sick as a DOG I’d ask if I could come film you talking about all this! And lastly thank you fr putting a smile on this cynical old mug .
Thank you for your inspiring story (and for your effective life).
Have you published a diary telling that story? Including the contextual asides?
Byrd on KOS
I agree with Martina, Slim. Your lineage, experiences, passionate principles, and writing ability all call for a report.
I also like your funky blues.
Byrd on KOS
Byrd on KOS
Doc Gonzo also sees it.
Emerson wrote, “Always a seer is a sayer.”
Byrd on KOS
The Chinese are inscrutable???
Byrd, I know your’e just trying to be clever, but racist tropes aren’t the way to go.
But China’s a whole different topic.
Byrd on KOS
Point taken, saevans. I agree with you.
In the second graduating class at Oakland University in Rochester, Michigan, I had to take a survey course in India or China. I ended up in China and learned only a bit of their long and tumultuous history.
I regret the flippant anti-China attitude of many of my American compatriots. I’d rather grant respect, then learn. Their hard-line on Hong Kong and their Muslim population concerns me, but our hard line on blacks and liberals concerns me more.
Byrd on KOS
Okay then! China’s a huge topic, both contempory and historical. Much good & much bad. Much fascinating and instructive. But this isn’t the forum for that.
Cheers, Byrd, and best,
Byrd on KOS
I think Machievelli was much smarter than any of these nitwits. He would have scorned Trump and had the brains to stay away. That does not mean he was one of the good guys. But putting his name out there was a good reminder that history has something to teach us. Thanks.
6-11-20 to Patreon
|Byron Bradley Byrd Carrier Jun 11, 2020, 11:47:33 AM PDT I don’t mind taxes that are fair. Oregon doesn’t have a sales tax (and isn’t taxed at Patron) but I wouldn’t mind if a small tax were added to help fund my state. Is this possible? Thanks. Billy (Patreon) Jun 11, 2020, 3:04:32 PM PDT Hey there,|
Thanks for your email, Byron. I’m happy to help with this.
If your state doesn’t charge sales tax, we cannot add an additional tax – as we would have to answer legally for all the taxes we collect.
I hope this helps. Thanks again for your email. Let me know if there’s anything else. All the best, Billy Brad to Patreon Thanks, Billy.
Wouldn’t it be great to melt down an old bronze statue and recast it as Canasatego, Thomas Paine, Harriet Tubman or Bernie Sanders, etc.?
And he was motionless, then shot 22 times. Absolutely appalling. That was murder.
Byrd on KOS
If he wasn’t dead after the 21st shot, were the police still afraid for their lives and therefore justified in shooting him, bravely and heroically, the 22nd time?
I yearn for Andy of Newberry and Barney Miller as indicative of our police.
Or will Americans elicit and allow multiple Robocops?
6-16-20 to Starfireteja article on whether eating carrots is as bad as meat
Some want to avoid feeling what their food choices imply and finance in terms of pain and suffering. They say perhaps the carrot suffers being pulled. Perhaps a little, but it’s exaggerating their concern to dismiss their involvement in actual suffering.
Who can deny the screaming monkey wants to live and winces in pain? Would such avoiders kill and eat their own pets, or eat their own arm and still not admit sentience or pain?
How animals are treated in life and how they’re killed matters. They’re sentient creatures. If they lived freely and well and died naturally and then we were to eat them, that’d be a more ahimsic (non-injurious) act. It could even be seen as honorific, just as some monks use the bones of their revered dearly departed for horns and bowls.
Perhaps carrots are ready to be eaten, transformed from structure to consciousness. Or maybe they don’t know sentience in a fearful, grasping-to-life way. I don’t see evidence of their dreading it.
How about fruit and nuts and seeds that come from the end of the season? We enter into the sex life of the plant, aiding it in spreading it around, just as they wanted.
Though I don’t always eschew meat, I mostly use vegetables, greens, and fruits, plus beans, seeds, mushrooms, etc.
One argument for eating meat and fish is that they will die anyway. When I eat sardines, I know they have lots of cousins to carry on their line. (If they were to decline from overfishing or pollution or other, that’d be another issue.) But just as cells in our bodies flourish, maintain, and die as a part of the overall process. I can see arguments for eating meat and fish, given a good life and a painless death.
6-30-20 to KOS on Trump’s tweet on Ignorance and his being ignorant:
Ignorance is never a shame. We all don’t know various things. Unadmitted ignorance is, though. And deliberately stubborn ignorance is even worse.
While our alleged president stays ignorant on the things mentioned here, his Republican party also stays deliberately and stubbornly ignorant on such huge common human problems like global heating, toxic pollution, police violence, and that people don’t like being exploited, dominated, or invaded.
Same day to KOS re Trump aging badly:
I dont know about you, but most of have been addressing them from days before he took office.
Byrd on KOS
Yes. At least give them the chance to live up to their patriotism.