Thou Art That

Posted in Uncategorized by chamblee54 on January 21, 2010

It started out as a joke comment about a joke.
Thank G-d for secular humanism. You’re welcome. PG got to thinking, and wondered what the punch line was. Is there a difference between G-d and man?
In “Zen and the art of motorcycle repair” the author contends that the division of G-d and man, subject and object, is the dirty work of Aristotle. PG is not philosophically grounded enough to know, but suspects that unity is better than division. Is the earth a unified whole, “thou art that”?

Now, the truth just might be that G-d is separate from man. While unity may sound appealing, it might not be the way things operate. Just because a belief makes you happy does not mean that it is true.

If there is a division between G-d and man, then where does the boundary lie?

Pictures are from the “Special Collections and Archives, Georgia State University Library”. Margaret Mitchell was not eating at the Krystal.


Posted in Uncategorized by chamblee54 on January 20, 2010

Renegade Evolution has a piece about violence today. One of the ideas was that not all violence is physical, that verbal abuse can hurt just as bad.

Violence is as old as mankind. It can be argued that progressing from fighting with fists to fighting with words is a civilizing step. While a world of harmony and cooperation may be a cool thought, in reality it will not happen for a long time.

American society is violent. The land was secured through violence, and the power of government is held by force. The dominant religion of America is Jesus Worship. Verbal abuse is a sacrament of the Jesus Worship church.

The pictures are from “Special Collections and Archives, Georgia State University Library”.

1956 Looks Different Today

Posted in Uncategorized by chamblee54 on January 20, 2010

Did people look different back then?

PG has been cruising the picture collection at the GSU library. Most of the images are black and white, which might be part of the difference. Styles of dressing change, and there is less print media ( with posed pictures) today. Maybe people are still the same, but the pictures have changed.

Many of the ladies in today’s collection were in an organization called WOMPI- Women of Motion Picture Industry. They were working women, not stay at home cookie bakers.

When PG worked at Davisons in 1980, the employee entrance was on Ellis Street, the side shown in picture 08. In 1980, you could see the nail holes in the bricks where the words “Davison Paxon” had been attached.

Torture Can Kill

Posted in Uncategorized by chamblee54 on January 19, 2010

The story
should have aroused the skeptics. Three men held at Guantanamo Bay were said to have committed suicide on the same night. Looking back to June 2006, it seems like it slipped in under the radar. The war in Iraq was going badly, and the blame game was being played.
It turns out that those three men might have been killed by American agents. The use of torture and outlaw facilities was semi common knowledge by 2006. The reactions were split along the predictable lines…those against the war were horrified, and those who supported the war supported the torture. If the truth had been known in 2006, it likely would not have changed anyone’s mind.

It is said that in war, truth is the first casualty. In World War W, this would seem to be the case.

Did Israel Create Hamas?

Posted in Uncategorized by chamblee54 on January 18, 2010

The following is a re-post from a year ago. The subject is a good fit for King Day.
There is a featured blog on the WordPress home today called Pakalert. They posted a feature on January 7 titled “Israel Created Hamas to Split Palestine”. The thesis is that Israel helped to start Hamas as a tool against the PLO and Fatah.
PG does not claim to know everything about Palestine. This bit of revisionism does sound a bit far fetched. But the question does arise, what role did Israel play in the creation of Hamas?

In the six day war, Israel gained control of Gaza. Israel occupied the territory for a while, and has had a great deal of control over it ever since. What did Israel do to prepare the Gazans for self government?

By all accounts, it was not a friendly occupation. Israel established settlements on Gazan territory, taking up twenty percent of the land. This is in one of the most densely populated regions on earth.

Is it surprising that a radical organization like Hamas exists? Would it exist if the Israeli treatment of the Gazans had been better during the occupation? Like many other things, the present state of affairs is a done deal. You cannot go back in time and create a better life for the Gazans…and ultimately, the Israelis.

This Does Not Help

Posted in Uncategorized by chamblee54 on January 16, 2010

There is a video by Martha Wash making the rounds. PG wishes he could enjoy it, but Jesus gets in the way.

The video starts out with Ms. Wash carrying on about no matter how bad things get, she is going to be strong and carry on. It sounds like church music, even though neither the G word nor the J word were spoken. ( At least in the part the PG could stand to listen to).

Jesus worship is a religion of emotion and belief. These powerful emotions have been used like a weapon on PG. Jesus has put a hurtin’ in the life of PG. Listening to church music is not going to make him feel better.

Pictures illustrating this post are from the Special Collections Department of the Pullen Library at Georgia State University.

Stand Up For Hairspray

Posted in Uncategorized by chamblee54 on January 15, 2010

There is a video on youtube showing a bit of Dave Letterman. He is discussing his opponent, Jay Leno. The theme of the monolog is what Mr. Leno “stands for”. In this case, it is all american values like killing natives to steal their land.

Now, the question is not about Mr. Leno’s commitment to anything, other than hair spray. It should be noted that Mr. Letterman is not without sin, and neither is as funny as Ed McMahon thought Johnny Carson was. The issue for PG is, why should a comedian “stand for” anything?

Part of the cult of celebrity worship is the attention paid to the opinions of entertainers. From Jesus worshiping quarterbacks to Jane Fonda, people in the spotlight are assumed to have valuable opinions. Often these people are very good at what they do, but woefully deficient in the rest of human behavior. They should not be regarded as role models.

What Kind Of Accent?

Posted in Uncategorized by chamblee54 on January 15, 2010

PG is listening to bloggingheads and looking a pictures from the GSU library. What a pleasant way to spend an evening.

The b heads chat is about Harry Reid, and the way black people talk. The word Negro is used quite a bit, and is considered acceptable. While what Mr. Reid said was perhaps phrased clumsily, the essence of what he said…that BHO was a black man who didn’t scare was acceptable to white people… was considered to be true.

The chat then turned to Trent Lott. And PG heard something that made him stop the podcast and write down what he heard.
“The difference between Harry Reid and Trent Lott is that Reid used the wrong words, but the Lott had the wrong idea”.
The rest of the chat went on about telling the difference between what people say, and the words they use to describe the thought. Someone suggested a year’s moratorium on controversy about insensitive things that people say. It was said that life would go on as before.

Bad Drivers Part 75

Posted in Uncategorized by chamblee54 on January 13, 2010

A blogger spoke out again about drivers who don’t pay attention to the road. Texting, eating, and cell phone talking are all culprits. The solution presented here is shame…take pictures of the offending drivers, and post them on a blog.
PG commented:
“Will you help in the legal defense if one of these “shamed” drivers decides to sue?”
This got two responses: Peter G opined
“Sue on what grounds? Having their picture taken in public? I’m not a lawyer, but I don’t believe privacy rights and free speech restrictions are applicable when it comes to exposing people’s driving habits on public roadways.”
A counter view came from Douglas :
“You cannot publish anyone’s picture without permission. When I was an avid photography hobbyist, I often took pictures of people on the street. I was taught to always get permission. A person has a right to control over his image. I think you will find, if you consult a lawyer, that you could easily run into a problem posting images as suggested.”
Even if the case was thrown out in court, or you won in a trial, the expenses of hiring an attorney are considerable. There is also the very good chance that the “shamed” party would “not get it”. While you are concerned about the impaired driving skills, the person would… with a bit of justification…worry about the reputation damage.

PG has always wondered why the church is so quiet about safe driving. Why is courtesy on the road not seen as a moral issue? The preachers scream loud and long about sexual practices, and don’t sound a peep over the way a person drives.

Update There has been another round in the discussion.
Peter G
“Your “reasonable expectation of privacy” ceases the moment you set foot into a public area, where you have neither right nor control over images taken of you. Getting angry and threatening a law suit is different from actually having a case.
Just open a newspaper, a magazine, or watch the news, and you’ll see plenty of passers-by who never gave permission to be photographed and their pictures published in print or aired on television. If that were illegal, virtually all media outlets would be getting their pants sued off day after day.”

“As you said, you are not a lawyer.”
Peter G “
“The speed of light in a vacuum is 186,000 miles per second, and I’m not a theoretical physicist. What’s your point?””

Ooops He Was Innocent

Posted in Uncategorized by chamblee54 on January 12, 2010

Listverse has a feature today about 10 men who were executed, but later believed to be innocent.

To the surprise of nobody, 5 of the 10 men are from Texas. Wasting the convicted is a popular pastime in the lone star state.
Whether this translates into the lowest crime rate in the free world is another matter.

Texas was the home of Todd Willingham, who was the subject of an article in the New Yorker. There is an investigation into his case underway in Texas now.

Jailhouse snitches testified in several of the cases. In one,
“Two of the six jailhouse witnesses who testified at trial later recanted, saying they were given cigarettes, television and alcohol privileges, and conjugal visits for their testimonies.”
Five of the ten were white, three were hispanic, and two were black.

One of the men was from Georgia. On November 15, 1996, Ellis Felker was executed for a Houston County murder. Four years later, DNA tests were performed, and found inconclusive.

The long series of appeals and court appearances does not always assure that justice will be done. The courts seem to get in a mood to get the hearings out of the way so the convicted can be executed.

Pictures of the executed men are from listverse. The picture of the electric chair (Reidsville) is from the GSU library.

Latawnya Drinks And Smokes Drugs

Posted in Book Reports by chamblee54 on January 11, 2010

One of the reasons for the drug problem is drug education. Many of these programs, while well intentioned, make the problem worse.

Courtesy of Awfullibrarybooks, we can see today “LATAWNYA, the Naughty Horse, Learns to say “No” to Drugs“. This uplifting story is about the afternoon when Latawnya goes out to play with her sisters Daisy and LaToya. Suddenly they meet four strange horses, Connie, Chrystal, Jackie, and Angie. They like to drink and smoke drugs. Soon, Latawnya is led astray.

The author of this tale was born in Mississippi, and lives in California. She says “Thank you, G-d”.

In 1986, there was an oversupply of cocaine coming into America, and new ways of using the product were needed. Someone had the idea of making crack. The media did its part, by running scare stories about the new drug sensation. “One puff makes your head feel like it is exploding”. The stories had the combined effect of scaring parents, and making crack cocaine irresistible to certain people. Crack became a part of the life.

The first time PG heard about oxycontin was a drug education flyer at work. It promised an overwhelming rush to the user who injected the substance. PG imagined the reaction of some of the druggies he had known to this promise…where can I get some?

PG is in the detoxed, old fogey stage of his life. Millions of others are not. When they read stories about horses who drink and smoke drugs, they learn to believe the opposite of what the drug educators tell them. Many will not live to be detoxed old fogeys.

Lieberman And Thune Do The Hand Jive

Posted in Uncategorized by chamblee54 on January 11, 2010

Joe Lieberman (?-CT) made some noise in Israel recently. Speaking at a press conference in Jerusalem, Mr. Lieberman told Israel not to worry, that congress will make sure Israel gets all the money she wants. No matter how Israel treats the Palestinians, American financial aid is assured.
Mr. Lieberman is on a mid east tour with three other senators. The other three are John McCain (R-AZ), John Barrasso (R-WY), and John Thune (R-SD). Mr. Thune stood behind Mr. Lieberman during his remarks, and made gestures with his thumbs.