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14/11/2014

“The white people in Gone with the Wind aren’t necessarily good people, but their badness as it is understood in the film has nothing to do with the lives of black people. Their dramas float over the suffering of the slaves and then over the suffering of the free black people indifferently.

“This is the underlying reality of the racism in Gone with the Wind: its abstractness. The War is an external force outside of the personal dramas of the players. Slavery, hatred, prejudice — all may well exist but not in any personal way. The crimes of Gone with the Wind all spring from that original sin: the failure to recognize that there’s a problem at all.” — Stephen Marche, The Racism Of Gone With The Wind Is Still With Us

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The Pope’s 10 Tips For A Happier Life

5/11/2014

pope francis caricature

cartoon by Paul Combs

1. “Live and let live.” Everyone should be guided by this principle, he said, which has a similar expression in Rome with the saying, “Move forward and let others do the same.”

2. “Be giving of yourself to others.” People need to be open and generous toward others, he said, because “if you withdraw into yourself, you run the risk of becoming egocentric. And stagnant water becomes putrid.”

3. “Proceed calmly” in life. The pope, who used to teach high school literature, used an image from an Argentine novel by Ricardo Guiraldes, in which the protagonist — gaucho Don Segundo Sombra — looks back on how he lived his life.

4. A healthy sense of leisure. The Pope said “consumerism has brought us anxiety”, and told parents to set aside time to play with their children and turn of the TV when they sit down to eat.

5. Sundays should be holidays. Workers should have Sundays off because “Sunday is for family,” he said.

6. Find innovative ways to create dignified jobs for young people.  “We need to be creative with young people. If they have no opportunities they will get into drugs” and be more vulnerable to suicide, he said.

7. Respect and take care of nature. Environmental degradation “is one of the biggest challenges we have,” he said. “I think a question that we’re not asking ourselves is: ‘Isn’t humanity committing suicide with this indiscriminate and tyrannical use of nature?’”

8. Stop being negative. “Needing to talk badly about others indicates low self-esteem. That means, ‘I feel so low that instead of picking myself up I have to cut others down,’” the Pope said. “Letting go of negative things quickly is healthy.”

9. Don’t proselytise; respect others’ beliefs. “We can inspire others through witness so that one grows together in communicating. But the worst thing of all is religious proselytism, which paralyses: ‘I am talking with you in order to persuade you,’ No. Each person dialogues, starting with his and her own identity. The church grows by attraction, not proselytising,” the Pope said.

10. Work for peace. “We are living in a time of many wars,” he said, and “the call for peace must be shouted. Peace sometimes gives the impression of being quiet, but it is never quiet, peace is always proactive” and dynamic.

– via Catholic News Service

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Ray Sez Go Nutz

4/11/2014

Ray Bradbury on insanity

“Insanity is relative. It depends on who has
who locked in what cage.” Ray Bradbury

found via Michael Dobson

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Thinkage

2/11/2014

“Have you ever noticed that when your friends tell you about conflict with co-workers or lovers, you almost always feel like they were wronged?  What are the odds, really?  Seeing ourselves and our tribe as innocent victims draws sympathy and support and protects self- esteem…when we cultivate the sense that we have been wronged, we can’t see the wrong that we ourselves are doing.  We also give up our power to make things better.  If people keep being mean to us through no fault of our own, we’re helpless as well as victims, at least in our own minds.  You can’t fix what you can’t see.

“In the case of Christianity, the theology of persecution serves to give the faithful hope…But it has also blinded generations of believers to the possibility that sometimes the hardships they face are due not to their faith or outsiders hating Jesus, but to the fact that they hit first.” — Valerie Tarico, Why Right-Wing Christians Think They’re America’s Most Persecuted

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Thinkage

22/10/2014

“If slavery was outside of US history, for instance—if indeed it was a drag and not a rocket booster to American economic growth—then slavery was not implicated in US growth, success, power, and wealth.  Therefore none of the massive quantities of wealth and treasure piled by that economic growth is owed to African Americans.  Ideas about slavery’s history determine the ways in which Americans hope to resolve the long contradiction between the claims of the United States to be a nation of freedom and opportunity, on the one hand, and, on the other, the unfreedom, the unequal treatment, and the opportunity denied that for most of American history have been the reality faced by people of African descent.  Surely, if the worst thing about slavery was that it denied African Americans the liberal rights of the citizen, one must merely offer them the title of citizen—even elect one of them president—to make amends.  Then the issue will be put to rest forever…the other half is the story of how slavery changed and moved and grew over time…From 1783 at the end of the American Revolution to 1861, the number of slaves in the United States increased five times over, and all this expansion produced a powerful nation.  For white enslavers were able to force enslaved African-American migrants to pick cotton faster and more efficiently than free people…The returns from cotton monopoly powered the modernization of the rest of the American economy, and by the time of the Civil War, the United States had become the second nation to undergo large-scale industrialization.  In fact, slavery’s expansion shaped every crucial aspect of the economy and politics of the new nation—not only increasing its power and size, but also, eventually, dividing US politics, differentiating regional identities and interests, and helping to make civil war possible.

“The idea that the commodification and suffering and forced labor of African Americans is what made the United States powerful and rich is not an idea that people necessarily are happy to hear.  Yet it is the truth.” — Edward E. Baptist, We still lie about slavery

 

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Thinkage

16/10/2014

“Men in general, but especially nerdy men, are used to having their whims satisfied as swiftly, entirely, and luridly as possible.  It comes as no surprise, then, that their anger knows no lines.  A woman’s family, friends, career, and sanity are all fair game.  If they’re angry, and she’s a woman, they must be in the right.” — Juliet Kahn, Fear As A Way Of Life: Why Women In Comics Don’t ‘Just Report’ Sexual Harassment

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Thinkage

15/09/2014

“If something burns your soul with purpose and desire, it’s your duty to be reduced to ashes by it.  Any other form of existence will be yet another dull book in the library of life.” — Andrea Balt on Charles Bukowski

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Never Complain About Your Job…

12/09/2014

Professional Poo Diver

…EVER!

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Thinkage

18/08/2014

“This is part and parcel of The Big Lie we Americans tell ourselves. That one about our vaunted exceptionalism. Heh, heh, exceptionalism. Riiiiight. Exceptionalism isn’t even a real word, but then that’s par for the course. Tell me, America, what’s so damned exceptional about fearing the police? About living in fear of authority? What’s exceptional about armed troops in the streets? About armored vehicles and automatic weapons on the corners, in the playgrounds, guarding the schools and the store and the police stations? About blockades and showing your papers? What’s exceptional about being shot down without trial or due process? What exactly is exceptional about dead kids in the street? What’s exceptional about tear gas and rubber bullets – or lead ones for that matter? But then what’s so exceptional about an armed population? About citizens who solve their differences with pistols and assault weapons? What’s exceptional about racism and inequality and disparity and naked hate? What’s exceptional about crime and riot? What’s exceptional about the arrest and detainment of journalists and reporters? What’s exceptional about political division that verges on civil war? These things are all too common around the world…If you want to be exceptional, America, then you have to be the exception.” — Jim Wright, Stonekettle Station

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Thinkage

30/07/2014

“Heterosexuality’s power lies in perception, not physical truth—as long as people think you’re exclusively attracted to the right gender, you’re golden.  But perception is a precarious thing; a ‘zero-tolerance’ policy has taught men that the way people think of them can change permanently with one slip, one little kiss or too-intimate friendship.  And once lost, it can be nearly impossible to reclaim…

“The zero-tolerance policy is legitimately scary, then, not just because it sticks you with a label, but also because it erases a lifetime of straightness…

“Indeed, such erasure is scary even if homosexuality itself isn’t a bad thing.  Even if religion and Esquire didn’t teach men to be scared of each other’s bodies, they would still be afraid of the way a brush with gayness can so suddenly erase the rest of their sexuality.  With so much on the line, it’s no surprise that men take up the job of policing this boundary themselves, lest it be policed by someone else, to their detriment.” — Zach Howe

Zits 20140307Zits by Jerry Scott and Jim Borgman

 

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