Monthly Archives: May 2006

And by classified, we mean whatever we don't want printed…

FASCISTS. There is nothing else to call these people.

Attorney Gen.: Reporters Can Be Prosecuted – Yahoo! News

Attorney General Alberto Gonzales said Sunday he believes journalists can be prosecuted for publishing classified information, citing an obligation to national security.

The nation’s top law enforcer also said the government will not hesitate to track telephone calls made by reporters as part of a criminal leak investigation, but officials would not do so routinely and randomly.

“There are some statutes on the book which, if you read the language carefully, would seem to indicate that that is a possibility,” Gonzales said, referring to prosecutions. “We have an obligation to enforce those laws. We have an obligation to ensure that our national security is protected.”

Perspectives on Drawing Life

Danny Gregory wants to get his drawing back in touch with his life again:

By Danny Gregory

I have lost touch with the most important thing to me, my life as I live it. Not my life as it is ornamented and sugar crusted but the plain old eat-some-cereal, smell-the-tubeorse, watch-the-dog-sunbathe life that I actually lead. The life that isn’t destined for some other purpose or audience or analysis but just is. The authentic life that starts each day with an emptying bladder and wraps it up with a stretch of floss.

It’s not just me. It’s easy for anyone to get caught up with the enthusiasm for this drawing stuff to get overly involved in drawing prompts, in posting to a blog, to shopping for art supplies, taking classes, and planning sketchcrawls, and to forget the most important thing, the true purpose of it all. To draw what you live so you will live it more deeply.

Life without drawing is bad.
And drawing without life is bad too.

I am going to go out and have that tattooed on me somewhere prominent. But first, let me do some research into tattooing, pick a type face, plan out a color palette, comparison-shop pain killers…

It is so easy to get caught up in the stuff of life, the busy-ness, the bloggy-ness. I spend a lot of my time reading blogs, sometimes as escape but mostly because I find what others have to say so fascinating. But, I spend a lot of time simply living, too. Not that being and existing is very respected in a country where everyone’s second question after your name is, “And what do you do?”

Next to my computer here is a little penguin who gives me his perspective on life:

“I do nothing in particular, but I do it very well!” — W.S. Gilbert

Life is just too short to get so busy and caught up in important stuff to do that you stop actually living. Sometimes, you just have to breathe. And then you can draw. And paint. And create. But only if those things are adding something to your life in the process. If they aren’t it may be time for a breather.

Friday Fractal – Myst

One of my first attempts at playing with Chaos Pro

The Tao is forever undefined.
Small though it is in the unformed state, it cannot be grasped.
If kings and lords could harness it,
The ten thousand things would naturally obey.
Heaven and earth would come together
And gentle rain fall.
Men would need no more instruction
and all things would take their course.

Once the whole is divided, the parts need names.
There are already enough names.
One must know when to stop.
Knowing when to stop averts trouble.
Tao in the world is like a river flowing home to the sea.

— Tao Te Ching, 32

Vulnerabilities (Repost)


Vulnerability Monster, Melanie Weidner

A warrior takes every person as an adversary.
He sees all their vulnerable points,
And trains to eliminate his own.
A sage has no vulnerable points.

A warrior takes everyone as a potential adversary. He assesses each person that he meets for their strengths and weaknesses, and he places himself strategically. No confrontation is ever a surprise. Protection, competition, honor, and righteousness are his principles.

He is the weapon. Therefore, a warrior trains body and mind to perfection. He knows that the average person has hundred of points where death can enter. For himself, he seeks to eliminate as many of his own vulnerabilities as possible. In combat, he defends one or two points, and the rest of his attention is devoted to strategy and offense. Yet no warrior can eliminate all vulnerable points. Even for a champion, there is always at least one. Only the way of the sage eliminates all weaknesses.

It is said that the sage has no points for death to enter. This makes the sage, who is perfect in Tao, superior to the warrior, who is merely skilled in Tao. The warrior accepts death, but does not go beyond it. The sage goes beyond concepts of protection, competition, honor, and righteousness, and has no fear of death. The sage knows that nothing dies, that life is mere illusion: Life is but one dream flowing into another.

Deng Ming-Dao, 365 Tao

Most of us train in our lives as warriors. We think of life as a competition, and we set out to “win” things for ourselves. But the reality is that life is as much about cooperation as competition, and many of us don’t really know how to cooperate to produce the most common good, or even to get the things we really want from life. If we could just take them from someone else, it would be so much easier, it seems.

Perhaps what the sage understands is that there isn’t really that much of a need to compete, since there is so little that one actually needs in life, and if you have controlled your ego, there is little that you want, either. You learn to be satisfied with life itself, and draw your pleasure and happiness from the deep connection to life as a whole that you maintain. So life becomes more an experience of cooperation with the world around you, with others, rather than one of competition.

Don’t be fooled by the sage, though – they still know how to kick your ass if it’s necessary.

    ______________________

This is a repost from last year around this time of year. I thought I would take a look back at my progress over the last few years, and last year, posting on Deng Ming Dao’s wonderful words, was around the time I finally felt “complete” in myself – without needing another person, a job, or any activity to make me feel “whole”. I became happiest alone, where I could simply be, without anyone else’s expectations imposed on me. These days, I still feel best when I am simply by myself.

But I’m learning to open up again, to let other people in a bit more. This blog has been a huge part of that, and I’m far more open here than I am in my day to day life. Around friends, I’m still a bit guarded and cautious, still a bit afraid, I think. But not so much for myself anymore – I think I can handle whatever others might do to me. I think the caution is more what I might do to them. Perhaps that is the part of all this I haven’t really dealt with yet – the capacity I once had to do great harm to others emotionally. I like to think this is gone, but – I read other people very well, and usually know where they are vulnerable. I know how to push buttons, and can do it without effort.

I think that is still my real fear. I need to stop living as a warrior, and truly embrace being a sage.

Maybe it's the sheep factor?

Dunno how else to explain why Wyoming, Idaho and Utah are still clueless…

UPDATE:

Perhaps we ought to build that immigration fence around these three states, and the rest of us can just peacefully live our lives…

Wyoming… Where the men are men, the sheep are nervous, and the women carry .454 Casulls (must be why the men go after the sheep)

Idaho… Apparently the USDA has an Agricultural Research Service’s U.S. Sheep Experiment Station in Dubois, Idaho. Wonder what they do there…

Utah… Is apparently the only state where the U.S. government has used weapons of mass destruction on sheep.

Where Does Brian Bilbray Really Live?

Print Story: Where Does Brian Bilbray Really Live? on Yahoo! News

It is now more than just mudslinging in the race for the 50th Congressional District.

Wednesday, the Democratic Party called for an investigation into allegations of perjury and voter fraud against Republican candidate Brian Bilbray.

Democrats said the proof is in property records from three homes and Bilbray?s declaration of candidacy.

These are serious allegations against a man who has run a campaign saying San Diego is and always will be his home.

The ad states San Diego is the home where Republican congressional candidate Bilbray said he lives.

“I live in Carlsbad, taking care of my mother,” Bilbray said.

He said he has lived in the Carlsbad house since March 2005.

It is the address he used in his declaration of candidacy for the North County congressional seat.

Democrats said Bilbray does not live at that address.

?It was a convenient residence to use for this particular election since it is the 50th Congressional District,” said County Democratic Party Chair Jess Durfee

In fact, there are serious questions about where Bilbray really lives.

Virginia property records show Bilbray claims a home in Alexandria, Va., as his primary residence, for tax purposes.

The same is true for a home in Imperial Beach.

Bilbray and his wife, Karen, also claim the Imperial Beach home as their primary residence.

“He’s misleading us. He’s stating different things, different places, for different purposes,” said Durfee.

“If these records existed since last August, and they had issues with them, then why didn’t they raise them before?” asked Bilbray.

Bilbray stands by his claims of his Carlsbad residence.

Neighbors told 10News they rarely ever see Bilbray at the house, which is his mother’s home.

“He comes here occasionally to see his mother like boys will do, but he doesn’t live here,” said neighbor Frank Knudsen.

“If he does live here, he must leave late at night and come back early in the morning,” said neighbor Bill Rider.

Another man, who lives right next door, said he wondered when people would catch on that Bilbray does not live here.

The Republican candidate said it?s a last-minute smear campaign.

“Frankly the attacks will continue right up until the election.” Bilbray

He stands by his television ads.

There are also allegations Bilbray’s children testified they lived in Virginia for purposes of paying in-state college tuition there.

Democrats are asking the California and Virginia attorneys general to investigate.

If Bilbray lives in Virginia, he may not be eligible to run for the congressional seat here.

Comment Spammers

Comment Spammers belong here in this nice pot of boiling oil. Some damn insurance site is spamming my blog like crazy today. I HATE these morons. It does nothing but annoy people and make them hate your product. Stop it.

Forever Pregnant

Oh, good grief, they ARE planning on creating Gilead!

Fuckers, indeed….

Hey, if my ATM card stops working, I am so outta here….

Forever Pregnant

New federal guidelines ask all females capable of conceiving a baby to treat themselves — and to be treated by the health care system — as pre-pregnant, regardless of whether they plan to get pregnant anytime soon.

Among other things, this means all women between first menstrual period and menopause should take folic acid supplements, refrain from smoking, maintain a healthy weight and keep chronic conditions such as asthma and diabetes under control.

Guidelines Urge Women to Be Prepared for Pregnancy

A new Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report seeks to improve preconception health and health care. The advice is aimed at patients, doctors, public health professionals, researchers, policymakers and government agencies. The steps recommended for patients include:

While most of these recommendations are well known to women who are pregnant or seeking to get pregnant, experts say it’s important that women follow this advice throughout their reproductive lives, because about half of pregnancies are unplanned and so much damage can be done to a fetus between conception and the time the pregnancy is confirmed.

The recommendations aim to “increase public awareness of the importance of preconception health” and emphasize the “importance of managing risk factors prior to pregnancy,” said Samuel Posner, co-author of the guidelines and associate director for science in the division of reproductive health at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), which issued the report.

Be sure to read Mac’s excellent take on this, as well.

Lastly, though, your recommendations accomplish nothing, other than making women feel like incubators with legs. As you mention in your report, the real cause of the infant mortality rate is poverty. If the family is poor, the mother probably won’t have access to healthcare (pre-natal or otherwise). What good is it to recommend that women be classified as Handmaids, er, ‘pre-pregnant’ and treated as such by medical professionals when the poor families directly responsible for the infant mortality rate won’t be treated as pre-pregnant because they do not have access to or cannot afford medical care?