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H2O Man

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Member since: Mon Dec 29, 2003, 08:49 PM
Number of posts: 69,763

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A Televised Trial

Is anyone watching the Michael Barisane trial on the Law & Crime Network?

Michael was a horse trainer of note. He was unhappy with a lady with horses on his farm, and both had been in contact with lawyers. Michael opted to avoid the potential for a civil trial over their disagreements, by shooting Lauren Kanarek twice in the chest.

She survived, and has been on the witness stand for parts of two days. The prosecutor is doing a solid job. The defense attorney is frustrated, because his client really has no way to excuse shooting the woman. Hence, Barisane appears to be trying to convince the jury that he is legally "insane" with his behaviors at the defense table. It should be interesting when the defense puts on its case.

Bright Shiny Things!

Look over here!

No!!!! Look over there!

Or, another option is to not be distracted by bright shiny things. As the Civil Rights Movement's saying recommended, "Keep your eyes on the prize."

Just my opinion.

Beyond Good and Evil

“Madness is something rare in individuals — but in groups, parties, peoples, and ages, it is the rule.”
― Friedrich Nietzsche, Beyond Good and Evil


I am not comfortable in agreeing with Joe Scarborough as a rule. Thus, when he said that he agreed with Mark Meadows' text that the effort to overturn the 2000 presidential election was "good versus evil," but that Meadows was on the wrong team, I was stunned. Was it possible I agreed -- kind of -- with Mourning Joe and Mark Meadows? Or was I actually experiencing the dreaded LSD-25 flashback that teachers warned us about in the 1960s? Was I confronted by Jimi's haunting question, "Is it tomorrow, or just the end of time?"

As if that was not horrible enough, I then heard that Virginia "Ginni" Thomas had urged Meadows to make Sidney Powell "the face" of the effort to steal the election. I was aghast! More, Thomas almost climaxed when Rudy delivered his oil-stained address. Great googla-moogla! Powell and Giuliani! Still, it is Donald Trumps pre-carcass mug that is the actual face of the insurrection. I was not slipping into a Nietzsche-like madness. It was today, at least so far.

The past few days have provided evidence that the attack upon democracy and reality continues. Watching the Senate hearings with Ketanji Brown Jackson made that clear. It's not, of course, as if a old white male nominee by President Biden wouldn't have faced attacks by republicans. But this is worse. My cousin questioned why a core group of republicans was focused on child pornography? I said that Ted Cruz may have conflicted reasons for doing so, but the others were sending a loud dog whistle to those who believe the Q-anon stories about Democrats running a child sex ring. I was pleased to see an old forum friend saying much the same on facebook.

Speaking of the decomposing ex-president, add his "genius" Putin comment to the mix. There's little doubt that Putin, like Trump, is a very stable genius who knows more than his generals. His invasion of Ukraine indicates that, at least in Trump's mind. But make no mistake: many in the Trump cult admire Putin. They just aren't quite stupid enough to say it publicly. Instead, they attack a lady who they know frightens the grass ruts of the Trump cult -- Ketanji Brown Jackson.

Imagine if you will the thought processes of one who respects Sidney Powell and admires Virginia Thomas. This is the type that views Marjorie Taylor Greene and the para-Sarah Palin, Lauren Bobbitt, as representing all they love about America. And this type demands that their Representatives and Senators compete with the Odd Squad in saying and doing things to stir that pot of madness that Nietzsche spoke of. The type that just ain't comfortable with the thought of a highly educated, capable black woman being in a position of power. So facts be damned, those republican Senators did their best to smear her with innuendo to connect her to the sex trade of children that Q-anoners subscribe to. And that is dangerous.

The madness being unleased upon Ukraine had many good people questioning how it could happen in Europe in 2022. I suspect that this includes people who wondered how January 6 could happen in the United States in 2021. We have an advantage over the people from Ukraine who are suffering. We still have elections, the January 6 Committee, and the rule of law -- imperfect as it times seems to be. But we have to recognize the importance of working between now and November to promote Democratic Party victories. We need to support those working at various levels to keep the barbarians in check.

Water Falls

"... So out there in this pristine, shall we say, land where everybody wants to go and see and be for a little while, that's the beauty of a place and sometimes, there's people there who are so unintrusive that you don't even see them. They've acclimated to the place. They live there with it as part of it. And that's the people who have a knowledge."
-- Faithkeeper Oren Lyons, Onondaga Nation; Interview with Bill Moyers; 1991.



When we moved into this house in 1995, some of the few nearby neighbors stopped over to welcome us. I learned that another, who lived across the road, had lived in the house some seventy years earlier. His name was Fred, though my four year old daughter called him "Old Fred," convinced he was the character from the Beatles movie "Yellow Submarine." As Fred was in his early 90s, I don't think he minded.

I rarely saw Fred outside, and when I did, he was usually walking home after spending time at the waterfalls. A c0-worker at the mental health clinic had grown up in the neighborhood, and so I asked her about him. She said she knew his children from school, but could only remember seeing him a couple of times. "He's a hermit, you know," she said. "And he has been for a long time.

Soon, I began taking produce from my garden to Fred's door -- not frequently enough to be a pest, but to use those opportunities to ask him about local history. Eventually, he became comfortable answering my questions. I remember one winter's day, after a significant snow storm, he and I were shoveling out our mailboxes, along with a couple neighbors' which were next to our's. When he took a break -- being in his 90's! -- he explained that as a young man, he learned local history from the old men, born after the Civil War. In turn, he said, they had learned from the old men before them.

Fred remained a hermit for his remaining years, but seemed to enjoy talking to me and granted full access for us to swim at his waterfalls across the road. His only request was that we leave no trash, something we would never have done anyhow. He told me how he used to camp out next to the falls when he was young, because he loved the sound of the flowing water.

This reminds me of conversations that I had over the years with another elder when we sat near creeks and streams. Onondaga Chief Paul Waterman told me about how, as a kid, he liked to sit on a hillside and drink spring water as it gurgled from the ground. That was something my late brother and I did as kids, when we took breaks from clearing stones from the hillside pasture -- after clearing brush.

One night, Paul's daughter told me that he had suffered a stroke, and that I should visit him in the hospital the following day. I was expecting the worst as I made my way to his hospital room, but was happily surprised that he was awake and talking to several nurses. As we talked, I thought I'd do an interview with him for a newspaper I wrote for. I wanted people to learn from another point of view not often even mentioned in the mainstream media. In time, I would do four interviews for publication that I thought were pretty darned good. More, my supervisor at work -- a former English teacher -- said that they represented the best record of a past era that the current society needed to read and understand. I will include a few things Paul said that may relate to these troubling times.

In the first interview, keeping in mind the quote from Oren, I asked how long the Onondaga had lived here? "The first words spoken by my people were the names of the alligator and of the turtle. How old are these animals? And how long have they lived here, on this land? We have ceremonies with dances where these animals are involved. Think about that, and you'll understand how old the Onondaga are, and how long we've lived here."

As the year 2000 approached, a lot of people were concerned that Y2K would cause wide-spread computer failures, resulting in a global crisis. I asked Paul about this? "Listen: if the Creator wants to bring dinosaurs back, they'll be on your front lawn tomorrow. And if he wants to end the world, he will."

At a time when many religious people were praying for divine intervention, I asked Paul what he thought? "Be a good neighbor. If my garden is ready before yours, we should share mine now, and yours later. Too many people don't understand the power of sharing. You have to rememmber that all of the earth is the Creator's garden, and he shares it with us. That's why I say that sharing is divine intervention."

The last question of the final interview was about what message he had for readers? "Live. Don't be afraid to live. We can live through this.

"I did reburials at the Penn Site. Germ warfare killed them. At the Bloody Hill Site, it was small pox. Some of the burials were of parents and their children. They were holding hands. That seems to happen when germ warfare kills families.

"But we are here today. It's our turn to live now. And if you're reading this, it's your turn as well. Make the most of it. Enjoy your family."





Since a number

Man and Superman

"The art of government is the organization of idolatry." -- George Bernard Shaw; Man and Superman.


Four people stopped at my house yesterday, and two so far today. The number one topic is the Russian military invasion of Ukraine, and the destruction and suffering it has caused. Some think it is time for the US, NATO, and/or the United Nations to step up and protect the people of Ukraine, while others are convinced that would lead to another "world war." Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, of course, and mine includes some of the social dynamics that I've commented on here on this forum for years. Let's take a look.

Sociologists recognize three basic types of leadership: traditional, bureaucratic, and charismatic. Since traditional leadership was found primarily in pre-industrial societies, we can focus on the other two as we compare Putin and Zelenskyy. Putin is, by definition, a bureaucrat. He is a specific type, who believes in exercising autocratic power. Reports indicate that he has been isolated -- likely to avoid Covid -- and that seems to have amplified his Cluster B personality traits. In some troubling ways, Putin has begun to resemble a severely disease villain from a James Bond film in real life.

People recognize that Putin is a bully, prone to making threats, yet his statements about nuclear weapons have to be taken for something that has, at least on some level, crossed his mind. Still, it is important to understand that bureaucrats -- even the blustering bullies -- tend to follow the processes of the bureaucracy they head. Thus, if Putin continues to be frustrated, he will place blame on those just below him. Like Trump, he will then select benvh players to replace them. And that contains some real dangers.

If he becomes more paranoid, especially if he thinks the US and NATO are actively assisting Ukraine, creating problems for the Russian military, he would be more likely to attempt other forms of wardare than immediately using nuclear weapons. That includes a number of options, from attacking the grids of the US and NATO countries, to perhaps resorting to biological wardare in Ukraine. There is no way to predict if the Russian military and intelligence would go along with this. It becomes more likely they would remove him if he demanded nuclear attacks.

One can only speculate at this point, but I think that Putin's time as the idol Shaw describes is running out. The planning of the invasion of Ukraine, while extremely brutal, has not gone as expected. Things have gone a wee-bit differently than in the past conflicts that Putin has been involved in around the borders of Russia. The sanctions that the Biden administration has led the global community to place on Russia are far more intense than Putin expected. Putin did not expect 20,000-plus miltary and medical volunteers from distant lands -- including Canada and the US -- to travel to Ukraine to fight the Russian army. He did not anticipate the condemnation of the global community. Instead, he thought the invasion would solidify the reputation he seeks, as a feared superman. But he is now exposed as a vile little man.

Contrast that to the law school graduate turned comedian who became the president of Ukraine. Is there any wonder why Putin wants Zelenskyy killed? For Zelenskyy, who has an above average grasp of bureaucratic systems, was elected with 73% of the votes. He stood his ground when Trump attempted to strong-arm him. And he has transformed into the most charismatic leader in the world as he leads the fight against Russia. Unlike Putin, he has not sought the safety of isolation far from the conflict. Rather, he has become the voice of the Ukrainian people, expressing their thoughts, fears, and desires. Again, the complete opposite of Putin.

Throughout history, charismatic leaders have been compared to shooting stars that create a bright but brief display of light. Many have been killed by enemies, others by former close aides, while very few have reached old age. However, it seems possible, perhaps even likely, that Zelenskyy will survive longer than Putin. And that, my Friends, is Putin's biggest fear -- that if the Russian people were able to access accurate information, that they, too, will demand democracy.

Peace,
H2O Man

My friend came to me .....

Apologies if this type of information has been posted already. A friend contacted me about supporting the people of Ukraine. It is great that the US and European countries are providing support for the military of Ukraine. I think that there are a lot of people like myself who want to do something. My friend said the group in the below link is a good resource for doing so.

Thank you for your consideration.


https://ucca.org/


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