“Freedom is not empowerment. Empowerment is what the Serbs have in Bosnia. Anybody can grab a gun and be empowered. It’s not entitlement. An entitlement is what people on welfare get, and how free are they? It’s not an endlessly expanding list of rights – the “right” to education, the “right” to health care, the “right” to food and housing. That’s not freedom, that’s dependency. Those aren’t rights, those are rations of slavery – hay and a barn for human cattle. There’s only one basic human right, the right to do as you damn well please. And with it comes the only basic human duty, the duty to take the consequences.”–P. J. O’Rourke
“From time to time, it’s good to remember there’s a multibillion dollar industry based on keeping you in a perpetual state of stupidity, rage, resentment and paranoia.”–David Burge
“I’m from the Northeast. But my hero’s journey played out in the South. My family is middle-class, but my journey was strictly blue-collar. Why? Something impelled me to that part of the country and that stratum of society.
“I drove tractor-trailers, I worked on oil rigs, I picked fruit as a migrant laborer; I lived in hellholes without electricity and running water; my friends were mechanics and roustabouts and body-and-fender men. Why? Had I been in control of my journey, I could have selected any one of hundreds of other places and people and odysseys. Something made me choose this one. What? I had no idea. I didn’t even know that choice was involved. Something simply compelled me.
“The hero’s journey is a metaphor for our artist’s life-to-be. It’s a foreshadowing, an adumbration of the Artist’s Journey to come. The passages are parallels. One prefigures the other.
“Before my hero’s journey, I couldn’t write. After, I could. I write like a truck driver. The virtues that sustain me are blue-collar virtues, Southern virtues, workingman’s virtues. Everything I learned on my passage that I thought was useless has proved to be fundamental, indispensable.”–Steven Pressfield
Change “Northeast” to “mid-Atlantic” and “played out in the South” to “played out in British Columbia” and it’s pretty close…
The paradox of our time in history is that we have taller buildings but shorter tempers, wider Freeways, but narrower viewpoints. We spend more, but have less, we buy more, but enjoy less. We have bigger houses and smaller families, more conveniences, but less time. We have more degrees but less sense, more knowledge, but less judgment, more experts, yet more problems, more medicine, but less wellness.
We drink too much, smoke too much, spend too recklessly, laugh too little, drive too fast, get too angry, stay up too late, get up too tired, read too little, watch TV too much, and pray too seldom. Continue reading
Twenty-six years ago, 1993, in Ainsworth, B.C. I last indulged myself in something pharmico-chemical, to whit, tetrahydrocannabinol. After verifying that the alterations to awareness that it caused hadn’t changed in the past five years, I said to myself, “Yep, that’s what it felt like. So what!?” and haven’t found the need to repeat the performance. Edie J.’s blessing from February 9, 1989, “I wish you a long, slow recovery”, has been in effect ever since. Almost 32 years without a drink, fully 26 without any mind-altering stuff, and really “getting well” continues to be a slow process.
“The Dutch language knows the priceless verb ‘doodzwijgen’, literally ‘kill something by keeping silent about it’. This has been a favorite tactic of European Brahmandarins for a long time—the near-media silence on the continuing Yellow Jackets protests is only the most recent example.”—Nitay Arbel
- I watch zero cable news.
- I don’t read Twitter.
- I use Facebook only to keep up with people who I care about personally. I tell myself to never, never comment on or share political posts on Facebook.
AA’s “24 Hours a Day” Meditation for November 28th:
Gratitude to God is the theme of Thanksgiving Day. The pilgrims gathered to give thanks for their harvest which was pitifully small. When we look around at all the things we have today, how can we help being grateful to God? Our families, our homes, our friends, our A.A. fellowship: all these things are free gifts of God to us. “But for the grace of God,” we would not have them.
This is the new Consultingsmiths blog. Just got it set up, haven’t made it pretty or clever-that’s for another day. For now, just wanted to get it off of the old host and onto the new host.
The old stuff is somewhere else and won’t be backfilled here. You won’t miss it.