Walmart getting rid of their excess inventory of Confederate swag? Good coverage, and photos, from Al Jazeera. The best way to access Al Jazeera is to follow them on Twitter.
Wannabe Führer Matthew Heimbach is sidestepping away from overt racism into anti-Semitism, which would be better called Jew-hating, because that is what it is. Anti-Semitism is a euphemism dreamed up by a German in the 19th Century, Wilhelm Marr. When fascism falters, Jew-hating is always the fallback position.
Heimbach says he is a separatist. And looking at these folks at prayer, aren't these your people? No?
To understand is not always to forgive. I'm an American. I understand these rubes perfectly well. I even shop at WalMart and am a lousy dresser and a white person. Actually, being a crappy dresser is a piece of white privilege.If you are white, you can dress any way you please, and probably no one will think you are poor or a criminal. But if you are black, you had better be careful how you dress. Obama knows that!
But these Christian cheeseheads' minds are full all kinds of crazy crap that's as bad as their outfits. Their belief system seems coherent at first, but on closer examination, it disintegrates into madness. The Christian soldier concept, for instance, is completely nuts. So they lost the Crusades. Well, get over it guys. That was a long time ago, even longer ago than that Civil War you are still fighting.
I believe the more bad publicity they get, the better. Liberals should, nay must, harp on their aesthetic failures and sneer at their ignorant peasant ways. . We should go right ahead and pick on them, because they want to destroy us. We are peace-loving folks, but we won't stand for their ugly garbage, the outward manifestation of their ugly minds. Give to the Southern Poverty Law Center. I have for years, and their constant pressure on right wing organizations has been instrumental in breaking up many of these fascist groups. Just as important is their education of the public on right wing fanaticism.
We have to stop being nice, conciliatory, etc. It took Obama a lot of years and experience, but he seems to have come to this conclusion, too. If he manages to close Guantanamo I'm in his camp. And we must get out of the Middle East and shut down the arms trade. And no more drone killings.
It is a pity that Obama has had to spend his presidency trying to mend the damage of the Bush years, against enormous opposition, and I wish he could have another term. Reining in the military would be high on my list of things that need to be done. But it seems that the peace movement is finished. Still, there must be hope.
My favorite academic madman, though a madman of the left, Klaus Theweleit, has some things to say about Anders Breivek and his relationship to the Knights Templar and similar quasi-Catholic bullshit. Of course the notion of a subrosa masters of the universe cabal is complete nonsense, but boys love their secret clubs and the notion of being special bearers of the TRUTH. Apparently Breivek saw himself as a Christian soldier who was going to cause Christians everywhere to rise up and slay the infidel. Just go out and google this stuff and be witness to their madness. Adolescent boys are sitting at home online right now, sucking up this garbage.
We've been watching a 1985 mini-series, The Last Place on Earth (I was thinking, "The last place on earth I'd like to go, but I am a woman, therefore sensible, mostly."), which friends David and Laura gave us the DVDs of. It is also available on You Tube. All I have to say is, "On, you huskies."Actually, I have lot more to say.
This is a very good, if somewhat deflating, adventure story, since you know how things came out. It is about the Scott vs. Amundsen race to the South Pole. This "last" adventure took place just before WW I, the war that decimated the young male population of Great Britain and was the beginning of the end for their story of global conquest. This is a strong metaphor for the last days of an empire on its way out. It ended after WW II with the loss of India.
Amundsen, leader of the successful Norwegian expedition, lived with Inuit tribes in the Arctic north and learned their survival technology. The key was to travel light and move fast, using sledges, skis and dog teams. Hard to take was the sacrifice of the dogs for their meat, after they had done the major part of the hauling, but this was necessary to fend off scurvy and an integral part of their game plan.
Scott and his people, as portrayed in this drama, are more complex in their thinking, not as pragmatic, and they get in way over their heads as the forces of nature bear down on them. Their technology fails them. The Norwegians do what must be done to survive and win. They are also not above the morally dubious trick of claiming they were headed north and then heading south to beat their rivals to the South Pole, whereas the English see themselves as staunchly moral and defenders of manliness and the British Empire. The Norwegians are manly and patriotic without over-thinking the matter. It's just who they are.
This tale as it is constructed here is an oblique critique of Thatcherism. There was the Falklands War against Argentina in 1982, the defense of a small island thousands of miles away from England. It was all pretty squalid. Without going into the right and wrong of it, a lot of people lost their lives for basically nothing, which was also true of the Scott party. Thatcherism was a disaster for Great Britain, much as Reagan and the Bush dynasty have been for the U.S.
On the home front, Terry and I are in total disagreement about the 30 meter telescope, which he favors and which I think is a grandiose enterprise. We don't argue about it. You can't argue with dogma. And I'm listening to Pope Francis these days, who reminds us that really all we have is this planet, and we had better take better care of our only home. What a curious time we live in. A nonbeliever, daughter of a "fallen away" Catholic, defender of women's reproductive rights, I find myself following the Pope! The Dalai Lama never moved me, because I think he just wanted to let people feel good about themselves, and that's too easy. Freeing Tibet is a fine idea, I suppose, if it could actually happen, and an easy stance. Understanding a situation like that in depth is beyond me. And he was financed by the CIA, I see. I just learned that from Wikipedia, my go-to source of enlightenment.