A Cease-Fire by Any Other Name

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Having been around for a few millennia means that I’ve seen just about everything–over, and over, and over. I keep hoping that humankind will learn from their past actions. Be honest, have you?

Not only no, but hell no. You never learn.

Today your Vice-President, Mike Pence negotiated a supposed 120 hour cease-fire between Turkey and the Kurds in Syria. Sounds good?

You never learn.

This is better referred to as “time for Turkey to resupply, rearm, reload, and relax. They’ll start to rape, pillage, and burn again, either in 121 hours, or as soon as all Turkey’s soldiers have a full load of ammo, a full belly, and a full night’s sleep.

I know this –not because I’m a genius (although I am)–but because it has always been this way and I see no evidence of change.

Electoral College

Your democratic republic is confusing to me. I’ve seen many approaches to representative government–it’s far more difficult than autocratic forms of government, but “the consent of the governed” makes for a powerful nation-state.

In America’s case, one of the most interesting and challenging ideas is the Electoral College. Initially, as far as I can tell, the Founding Fathers wanted to ensure that less populated states would still have representation.

The emphasis then was united STATES–the states were not provinces, but actual nation-states. This idea, unfortunately,  contributed to the Civil War since the Southern States believed that as nation-states they were sovereign and free to choose to stay in or leave the Union.

After the Union victory, the prevailing attitude became that it was one nation.

Therein lies the problem.

When Americans vote, do they vote as members of one country or as members of semi-sovereign local states? Is the president the leader of one nation, or fifty semi-autonomous pseudo nation-states?

If one nation, the Electoral College is unnecessary. If fifty semi-autonomous, semi-sovereign states, the Electoral College makes sense.

I’m confused, because from my perspective, it is a single nation.

Hopefully someone will explain this all to me.

Pleased to Meet You

Good day, sir or madam. My name is Diogenes and I am so pleased to meet you.

Over a few millennia, things change and even I must adjust. In my experience, it is by acting outrageous that I attract attention to my philosophy. I lived in a sewer, for crying out loud, and carried a torch in the daylight to be noticed, but now, to be outrageous, one needs to be . . . . . .. .

Courteous!

Eargggh!

Polite!

Garrgh!

Okay, I get it. Please tell me what truly interests you. I promise to listen intently.

Hmmmmm. Interesting.

Now, admit it–don’t you feel like a rebel? A libertine? A threat to society? All by sharing a thought in a polite manner?

Weird, isn’t it?

 

Centuries upon Centuries

I’ve spoken. I’ve written. I’ve done what you would call “performance art.” All this has taken centuries.

Let me put that in perspective. Your father’s birth to your death might be around a century. Now multiply that by 20 or 30. Got it? Good.

I resorted to walking around in daylight carrying a lighted lamp claiming to be looking for an honest man. THAT is how desperate I was and am for exposing the truth. However, sooner or later, when one is not successful, it is wise to give up and seek another course.

I’ve been writing here (wherever here is) for over a year. Being dead, I do not have Twitter, Facebook, or whatever, nor do I want them. I have always fallen victim to the belief that people would seek the truth; if I were a video game, that might be true.

Bottom Line: If you want me to keep writing, do what you can to get others to follow this blog. If there aren’t sufficient people interested in what I have to say by the Autumn Equinox, I will cease writing and take my efforts elsewhere.

If few respond, then I must believe that people prefer the sensational and inconsequential to the truth.

The ball–as you say–is in your court. I’ll be napping in my sewer (look it up if you don’t believe me).

Left Out

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I’m feeling left out—maybe you should feel left out, too.

Many people are being tweeted about, given nicknames, mentioned by name at press conferences.

“Rocket Man”

“Sleepy Joe”

“Pocahontas”

“Nervous Nancy”

He never gave me a nickname but just ignored me.

How about you? If you have been ignored, then you’re a nobody too. Just admit it and accept your fate in life.

Few deserve his attention, and neither you nor I made the cut.

I guess he doesn’t like that my hands are very large.

 

A Scary Barometer

I have watched societies for millennia and there is a barometer I use to determine when it is headed toward its demise. Shock.

When a society is no longer shocked by any news it receives, it’s in trouble. When persecution, corruption, and lies become the norm and are accepted as “normal,” things are not looking good. When inhumanity becomes acceptable, things are looking worse. When the population prefers fictitious entertainment to reality, it means that the people no longer even wish to know what’s going on.

What shocks you?

Turnabout

He’d always hated traveling, but sometimes it was unavoidable. He wasn’t quite certain how he’d managed to be headed away from home this time but chalked it up to getting older. His memory wasn’t quite what it had been–everything about him had diminished with age. Then again, it might have been that bottle of Jack Daniels he vaguely recalled consuming the night before.

Traveling in America was bad enough with the TSA security screening, but many other countries were worse. They did all of the TSA things, and then insisted on conducting interviews with each. and. every. traveler.

So here he was, standing in line, with some old guy (well, older than him, anyway) behind a podium, waiting to be interviewed. The line snaked forward until it was his turn. The old man looked down a list.

“Ah! Here we go. Would you please state your occupation?”

“Damned bureaucrats,” he thought, “always poking their nose into other people’s business.” Then he said, “I work for Homeland Defense, protecting America’s borders.”

“Ahhh,” commented the man behind the podium. “What’s your position on immigrants?”

“If they are legal, educated, employable, and speak English, I can tolerate them,” he replied, surprised that he was so blatantly candid.

“And if they’re seeking refuge from dangers?”

He looked for an ID card or at least a badge so he could complain about this jerk, but all he had was one of those stupid stick on “Hello my name is” labels with Rock written in sharpie. He realized that the man was waiting.

“If they don’t have a visa, they’re not allowed in. That’s the law.”

“What about natural born citizens?” the man behind the podium asked.

“No problem.” he replied, “If they have proof of citizenship, we let them right in.”

“But not the refugees?”

“Right. The law is the law.” He smiled inside, proud of himself for sticking to his values.

“Tell me,” the man behind the podium asked, “were you born here?”

“No,” he replied, irritated at Rock’s stupidity. “I was born in America.”

“So you’re not a natural-born citizen here” Rock replied.

“Of course not” he responded. This guy was a real idiot. The man behind the podium put his finger on a button that was visible on the top of the podium. “Since you are not a citizen here and since you have not completed the immigration process, I cannot let you enter.”

“Where am I going?”

“Some call it limbo, others call it purgatory. You can call it whatever you like.

“Once you complete your application and submit it through proper channels, we should get around to it in an eon or so. Next!” he pushed the button. A trap door opened and the man began to fall.