I have been kicking the can on this weblog (plus an audio companion) for awhile. It isn’t that I don’t intend to do this for real real, but I am in the middle of some significant changes and my thinking about this is still evolving. I have always identified as Christian, but never really practiced. Now I really practice – and I realize that my motives here are not what they ought be, spiritually speaking. I need to be more charitable and less tribal. I can’t just do this all from a point of anger and expect results. Living like that is exhausting, and the more successful I am in getting my relationship with Jesus right, the less interest I have in any sort of anger at all. Jesus was not a hippy – but that is the way I chose to see him because it suited me and what I wanted. I wanted a nice little life that was vaguely hippy “live and let live” and no bad vibes and tasteful hedonism and so on. Christ didn’t claim to come as a “great uniter” (quite the contrary!) I simply can’t make myself spend all the time and money required to pursue that nice little hippy lifestyle. Peace without justice isn’t worth pursuing. Justice takes time, but the hippy stuff feels good in the moment. Perhaps those things can be balanced – just not by me, and certainly not by me not that my concept of peace is the Christian variety. I can have peace without the phony affectations, and that is where I am headed. I will still live in the world – but I am not putting my faith there. The inhumanity of some towards others is still entirely repulsive to me, but what has changed is that I would now say I expect no mercy from the people in this society, least from those who seek power over other people. I don’t expect anything more from such people than institutional sadism. I can (and do) rebuke them all day and still not run out of constructive energy for the promotion of mercy & understanding & peace (of the exact variety I have received since giving my life to Christ.) My point is simply that I am working on getting myself spiritually together before pushing too much further. I am gonna park more show-prep for the future in the links below, and will continue to do so regularly. Not much will change for now but my attitude. Might move it to a new name and such – that is all tbd. Something really will come – I need to make sure I am not just a ranting loon pushing polemics for their own sake. I am learning much, and one of the biggest breakthroughs has been in my own understanding of how to live with the pain that will surely come into all of our lives. I have been able to free myself of the (frankly, silly) idea that I should expect a life free from pain – or even spend my entire life energy trying to create one. To bastardize a phrase from Paul Weller – I stopped dreaming of a pain-free life because it is one we’ll never know. This is a big breakthrough for me because as naive as it seems, I spent incredible energy fighting the idea that my pain had to be “managed” rather than simply “relieved”. It isn’t that relief isn’t possible – it is, and should be freely given when it is possible – but we must be active in using all means of relief available. I did not understand how seeking a Christ-like life could be effective to this end, and I now see better. I have made incredible leaps forward as a born-again person. Where there is not relief, there can be grace; and with grace, the forward march can resume. If this is just unwelcome evangelism to you, I can’t apologize, but I can say I am close enough to my old life to acknowledge I understand why. If you don’t really believe in God and Christ, it all sounds like nonsense. None of it really works if you don’t believe (as one who detests Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, the irony of that statement isn’t lost on me – believe me!) Part of the Good News is that it all works if you do believe, but I will try to persuade you of this without just asking you to take my word for it. I don’t expect you too.
The science community hasn’t really done much to distinguish themselves during this pandemic. Giving over to stuff like this only makes it worse.
I actually dont think the DEA expected the other side to just surrender when the DEA declared war on drug users. They certainly didn’t expect to eradicate drugs and drug use – to the contrary, they are dependent on these things to fund their lives. It is more profitable to treat cancer than cure it dontcha know! The DEA hasn’t won so much as a battle against the drugs. The drugs are winning and they have always won, and they will always win. The black market for drugs is a jobs program for the kind of hateful people who want to work at the DEA, and the black market is how the even more hateful people who work in intelligence fund their lives as well. Such people shouldn’t be allowed to live among us let alone thrive on our dime – but here we are! There is no doubt these people will be held to account for unleashing such misery on their own people – but until then, watch how quickly every one of their efforts is immediately and totally parried by even the lowest level street dealer! They are depending on all of us remaining fearful of them. They get their power from you.
The election is supposed to be over – but it isn’t. I am numb to the stupidity at this point. Very few of our institutions are showing themselves to be of any moral significance, and so we are just sort of left to wander while the pillage goes on. I myself have less to complain about than most, so I won’t. I think Trump is really only marginally worse than any politician, but I can respect that he and his supporters went out of their way to target people who have been targeted for hundreds of years of abuse here – and for that, he belongs on the scrap heap of history with the rest of them. If this election provides any relief to those who have been on the receiving end of the nastiness, then that is a good thing. It shouldn’t have gone that far to begin with – but this is the planet we live on. Biden doesn’t help me at all. He loosed the beast of the DEA on his own people with relish, and so I expect more of same. Before getting to excited by him, it would do well for pain patients to look at his record packing prisons and co-signing for drug warriors. He is without mercy or pity, and only worships power. If he hurts fewer people in the process, then I support him to that extent, but beyond that, I have no use for him either. In any event – no shortage of material, and I expect no shortage any time soon. Luckily, I have no shortage of will power to stay at it – at least not yet. All in due time! For now, more of same:
This country will take from you your legal pain medication and give you more legal ways to get assisted suicide. This nation will create your despair and then sell you more escapism. They will make money at both ends – and you will lose. And if they don’t get your money above the table, the remaining choices they have left for you will assist you to your end the other way.
I have experienced all 4 seasons in a single week for two weeks in a row. We have had snow each week (winter). There were days around 80 both weeks (summer). The roses outside bloomed because of the weird warm weather (spring), and the leaves are unmistakably fall. This is life in Iowa.
Davenport is right about my speed at this point. Half Illinois, Half Iowa – which is pretty much me. I am not sure how long I will be here, but so far so good.
Busy times. I voted, so my election is over – but the ads go on forever. The news does too. A quick run through below. Lots else to get caught up on with you all…all in due time. For now – on with the sadism!
I am surprised to Dr. Birx gittin’ dinged like she has been. I thought she was one of the good ones when it started. Haven’t seen her in public as much, and who knows what is happening there, but we really need an honest dialogue about what numbers we intend to use and how we intend to use them.
The people who made the decisions which we now revile will not suffer much personal consequence for what they did because our version of capitalism socializes liabilities and privatizes profits. We have a broken system.
Isolation is good for none of us. The kids of 2020 have some things easier for sure, but in many ways, they are carrying burdens no one should envy. We need to do better.
I haven’t seen the race angle covered in the opiate crisis in a way which reflects how significant it really is. This is a good start if you want to get your understanding leveled-up, which I hope you do.
This is a sign of how nasty a society we have become. We take people out of society – often for good reason – and make them dependent upon us totally. Then we abandon them to things we could never sentence them to. It’s wrong. It creates a karma bill that is gonna hurt for us to make right. Stupid. Un-necessary.
We will lose our status as a world class economy if we are not competitive with flights. Deep down we all know this. We also have all had bad flight experiences. We need to get real. We can’t allow our cities to die. We can’t allow our airlines to die. We can’t allow our people to dangle above the abyss while politicians jockey. Let’s try to get something consumer friendly if we can, but let’s not let the airlines die. They fuel an an incredible amount of this economy. We can make flying more sane, human, and planet friendly, but the idea of just letting Darwin run wild is not cool.
I am a post-modernist to the degree Richard Rorty was. That brought me to Cornel West before he was as public an intellectual as he is now. He really lays it out here and it should be heard. He needs a higher profile – no matter his politics.
NPR is one of the biggest cheerleaders for opiate prohibition, and they go out of their way to conflate illegal drug use and legal, medical use. That is the underpinning of most of their narrative! The way the news is starting to play out, it is going to be harder to pull that off. Deaths go up as access to prescriptions go down. More and more. There simply is no way to explain the opioid deaths anymore with the old tropes about wisdom tooth extractions leading to junkie death. The deaths keep going up as legal access goes down. Even when they die from a prescription, they really aren’t dying from prescriptions written for them. Illegal opiate use kills – and kills more and more by the day. Legal and medically supervised opiate use is not materially different than it ever has been, nor different than what goes on elsewhere in the world where there isn’t a “crisis” like ours. This story is about keeping the stigma going, not saving anyone’s life. NPR is incapable of shame.
You don’t have to believe drug users are great people – you just have to believe they are people. Don’t assign motives to them which are of a kind you think normal people wouldn’t have. Much like nicotine, getting kids hooked when they are young is how the black market for drugs works. Holding kids responsible for decisions they make as addicts is really just sadism.
More FUD. More implying that pain patients are dying from their own scripts. Just lazy and stigmatizing – the hallmark of for-profit media and media from Listeners Like You.