Saturday, 04/30/2016

After The Rain

Don't muddy the waters.


April 30, 11:25 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Close This Book

A Dark Word:

As l walk patiently through life
poems follow close—

blind, dumb, agile, my own shadow;
the mind’s dark overflow, the spill of vein
we thought red once but know now, no.

The poem called death
is unwritten yet. Some day will show
the violent last line,
the shadow rise,
a bird of omen

snatch me for its ghost.
And a hand somewhere, purposeful as God’s
close like two eyes, this book.

Daniel Berrigan.


April 30, 10:33 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

"I’m going to be really good for America."

President George Washington, April 30, 1789:

Among the vicissitudes incident to life, no event could have filled me with greater anxieties than that of which the notification was transmitted by your order, and received on the fourteenth day of the present month. On the one hand, I was summoned by my Country, whose voice I can never hear but with veneration and love, from a retreat which I had chosen with the fondest predilection, and, in my flattering hopes, with an immutable decision, as the asylum of my declining years: a retreat which was rendered every day more necessary as well as more dear to me, by the addition of habit to inclination, and of frequent interruptions in my health to the gradual waste committed on it by time. On the other hand, the magnitude and difficulty of the trust to which the voice of my Country called me, being sufficient to awaken in the wisest and most experienced of her citizens, a distrustful scrutiny into his qualifications, could not but overwhelm with dispondence, one, who, inheriting inferior endowments from nature and unpractised in the duties of civil administration, ought to be peculiarly conscious of his own deficiencies.

President Donald Trump, please take note.


April 30, 9:11 PM in Constitution, Schmonstitution | Permalink | Comments (0)

Friday, 04/29/2016

What good is melody, what good is music?



April 29, 11:45 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Doomed To Repeat

Learning from History:

They said, my saints, my slogan-sayers sang,
Be good, my child, in spite of all alarm.
They stood, my fathers, tall in a row and said,
Be good, be brave, you shall not come to harm.
I heard them in my sleep and muttering dream,
And murmuring cried, How shall I wake to this?
They said, my poets, singers of my song,
We cannot tell, since all we tell you is
But history, we speak but of the dead.
And of the dead they said such history
(Their beards were blazing with the truth of it)
As made of much of me a mystery. 

David Ferry.


April 29, 10:58 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Thursday, 04/28/2016

Cruelty with purpose is not cruelty - it's efficiency.

You bloody bastard! You'll not put your foot on me again!


April 28, 11:55 PM | Permalink | Comments (1)

Going On


This immemorial clock,
Whose dial is the girth
Of sea and hill and rock,
Entireties of earth,
Sounds with the falling sound
Of silver waters dropping,
So rhythmically bound,
Unaltered and unstopping.

And as those waters brim
The clock of earth and fall,
So round the solar rim
Fall the bright planets all,
Within that clock the sun:
Yet larger clocks than these
Await oblivion—
Altair; the Pleiades.


Kenneth Slade Alling.


April 28, 11:36 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Tired of lying in the sunshine staying home to watch the rain

When I was a boy, my stomach told me when to eat; but nowadays our lives are regimented by these infernal time-keepers.

 - Menander commenting on sundials

Timing, as they say, is everything:

Without the pendulum clock, the Industrial Revolution doesn’t happen. Without the quartz clock, the technology in the digital revolution doesn’t happen. It’s time, weirdly enough, that advanced our world. How?

The pendulum clock (conceived by Galileo, made by Christiaan Huygens) was useful for accurate timekeeping because the time it takes for a pendulum to swing is approximately the same regardless of the size of the pendulum. That means, a pendulum swing could serve as an accurate measurement of time. Before this, time was relatively useless because of how inaccurate it was across people, countries, and the world. This put everyone on the same time, so to speak.

The quartz clock (shout out Pierre and Jacques Curie) was even more accurate, since when electricity is sent through quartz it vibrates at a specific frequency so it can be programmed for exact timekeeping purposes. This is all necessary to coordinate the microprocessors in our computers and technology.

I think I've got the rate on the church clock pretty well adjusted.  But this damned cooling and warming, without Harrison's gridiron pendulum, tasks me...


April 28, 11:02 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Quis falsificare ipsos falsarius?

So the Latin is a stab in the dark.  Whatever.

Anyway, given my hobby of debunking certain things, I did find this debunking the debunking article at FiveThirtyEight to be of great interest.  This shit is a lot like conspiracy theories: somebody gets to feel superior over all the garlic eaters and their accepted knowledge.  Now lemme tell ya about chemtrails...


April 28, 9:18 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)


Call Guinness: George is still kicking at a spry 150!

Lovely view, eh?

The first landing on the way to the tower.

It was the first time in about 3 weeks that I felt like I had some real energy.  I know it's 3 weeks because I was laid up last Thursday and couldn't wind the clock, plus the 2 times before that I was wicked sore and exhausted after turning the crank.

Today, I walked to the church, made sure to pace myself on the winding, and felt darn fine on the walk home.  What a gorgeous day to mosey around the Village District...


April 28, 7:29 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)


Lola is The Groomer these days, but Dear Departed Vinnie was originally in charge.


April 28, 1:23 PM in Family Life | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, 04/27/2016

Is It Summer Yet?

You know, we had winter again yesterday.


April 27, 11:24 PM | Permalink | Comments (1)

Decision 2016

On Imperialism:

Proxies—pertinent, prominent, proximate—
impose war, sustain it.
The Empire ever absent and seemingly elsewhere—
evasive, persuasive, pervasive. Things are
this complicated.

Raza Ali Hasan.


April 27, 10:46 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Who's Afraid Of Legal Weed In Vermont?

Good on the Senate:

With time running out in the legislative session, supporters of marijuana legalization launched a sneak attack Wednesday from the Vermont Senate in hopes of forcing a reluctant House to weigh in on the matter.

By a 16 to 12 vote, the Senate moved to send its languishing legalization bill back over to the House, where it has stalled in committee for weeks.

“I thought there ought to be at least an opportunity for House members to express their support or opposition,” said Sen. Dick Sears (D-Bennington), who chairs the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Sears moved to attach the contents of a previously passed Senate bill to an unrelated House bill, H.858, which makes miscellaneous changes to the criminal code.

“I’m not surprised,” Speaker Shap Smith (D-Morristown) said of the move, adding that it would not necessarily force the full House to vote on legalization.

Smith described the number of House members who would support legalization as “not many” and said that if it came to the House floor attached to another bill, "It will lose and lose badly.”

Those not part of "not many" in the House can bite me.  Cowards.


April 27, 9:31 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Oh Look, The Intersection!

At Foothills yesterday.

I spent much of last week in bed.  Sadie was under the weather and out of school the last couple days, but we still went to our favorite bakery to get cookies as we do every Tuesday and Friday.  From the peeps there, we learned that everybody's been getting hit pretty well by a bad cocktail of bugs floating around, which makes me feel a little better about having at least one Pritsky-Garstka (if not two) down every day since Easter.


April 27, 7:15 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Tuesday, 04/26/2016

You used to say that it was so easy

But you're tryin', you're tryin' now...


April 26, 11:55 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

The Thundermakers descend

A Poem Beginning with a Line by Pindar:

Hoover, Roosevelt, Truman, Eisenhower—
where among these did the power reside
that moves the heart? What flower of the nation   
bride-sweet broke to the whole rapture?   
Hoover, Coolidge, Harding, Wilson
hear the factories of human misery turning out commodities.   
For whom are the holy matins of the heart ringing?
Noble men in the quiet of morning hear   
Indians singing the continent’s violent requiem.   
Harding, Wilson, Taft, Roosevelt,   
idiots fumbling at the bride’s door,
hear the cries of men in meaningless debt and war.
Where among these did the spirit reside   
that restores the land to productive order?   
McKinley, Cleveland, Harrison, Arthur,
Garfield, Hayes, Grant, Johnson,
dwell in the roots of the heart’s rancor.
How sad “amid lanes and through old woods”   
   echoes Whitman’s love for Lincoln!

Robert Duncan.


April 26, 11:00 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Brokered Conventions And Bundy Trials

This scene keeps popping into my head of late.


April 26, 10:13 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Coalition Building In A Two-Party System

And I see people are aghast:

"We’re not a movement where I can snap my fingers and say to you or to anybody else what you should do, that you should all listen to me. You shouldn’t. You make these decisions yourself," Sanders replied.

He then said that Clinton will have to court his supporters herself.

"And if Secretary Clinton wins, it is incumbent upon her to tell millions of people who right now do not believe in establishment politics or establishment economics, who have serious misgivings about a candidate who has received millions of dollars from Wall Street and other special interests," he said. "She has got to go out to you."

I'll leave aside the PUMA Phenomenon in '08 and just note that, if we're stuck with a 2-party system, then an internal coalition is necessary for one to be successful politically.  That means, in part, that the significant number of voters who went with the old socialist Jew ought to be acknowledged in more than a glib You Don't Want Trump To Win fashion, n'est pas?  Why shouldn't Hillary expect to reach out, making her positive case, addressing their concerns expressed throughout the silly season?

Now would be a good time to remember that the victor, if she wants to rely on certain folks, might want to keep campaigning to ensure Democrats and Independents who supported her fellow primary candidate help her win the big one.


April 26, 9:08 PM | Permalink | Comments (5)

Here's Another Woman We Could Put On Some Money

Ride, Sybil, ride:

Sybil Ludington was born on April 5, 1761 in Patterson, New York, the daughter of Abigail and Colonel Henry Ludington. He had fought in the French and Indian War and was an influential community leader. He volunteered to head the local militia during the American Revolution. In 1777, Sybil was sixteen years old and the oldest of twelve children. Being the oldest, Sybil was often in charge of caring for her eleven younger siblings.

On the night of April 26, 1777, Colonel Ludington received word that the British were attacking Danbury, Connecticut, which was 25 miles from Ludington's home in New York State. Sybil Ludington went out to gather her father's troops and warn the countryside of the British troops’ incoming attack. She took a forty-mile route by horse, and riding through the pouring rain, shouted that the British were burning Danbury, and called for the militia to assemble at the home of Colonel Ludington. By the time Sybil had returned home from her ride, around four hundred men were assembled, ready to stop the British army.

Sybil Ludington was recognized for her heroic ride by the man who would become the first American President, General George Washington. She continued to help throughout the rest of the Revolutionary War as a messenger.

Bonus: she's white, so I'm sure no rightwingers would complain about having her replace...dunno, Jefferson?  Grant?


April 26, 8:42 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Thirty Years The Glow Seems Like Yesterday

Chernobyl still is dangerous.  I remember it, and the survivors I met, very well.  Claims about safe nuclear as part of our green future are laughable.


April 26, 6:36 PM in Biofuels, Bitches! | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, 04/25/2016

The problems of the world are not in my department.

Yvonne, I love you...


April 25, 11:36 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Jeremiah 5:21

A Blind Woman:

She had turned her face up into
a rain of light, and came on smiling.
The light trickled down her forehead
and into her eyes. It ran down
into the neck of her sweatshirt
and wet the white tops of her breasts.
Her brown shoes splashed on
into the light. The moment was like
a circus wagon rolling before her
through puddles of light, a cage on wheels,
and she walked fast behind it,
exuberant, curious, pushing her cane
through the bars, poking and prodding,
while the world cowered back in a corner.

Ted Kooser.


April 25, 10:52 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Next, We'll Question The Legitimacy Of This Very Court

They keep on entertaining:

"Once statehood occurred for Oregon, Congress lost the right to own the land inside the state," the defense argued in the brief.

Bundy's defense is expected to argue in court that Malheur was not federal land because it had been doled out to homesteaders and was "relinquished." It is also expected to "provide evidence about foundational documents from the Federal Convention of 1787."

This is not the first time that there has been a battle over whether Malheur is federal land in court. The Supreme Court has actually ruled twice on the matter. They ruled once in 1902 and once again in 1935.

They certainly do have an interesting view of the Enclave Clause, and the Constitution as a whole...


April 25, 9:28 PM in Constitution, Schmonstitution | Permalink | Comments (2)

Jackson Made The Trail Of Tears Run On Time

Dear Dixiecrat/Former Senator/Loser Presidential Candidate Jim Webb: we can and should celebrate heroic Tubman while simultaneously denigrating genocidal Jackson, you fucking douchecanoe.


April 25, 8:02 PM in And Fuck... | Permalink | Comments (0)

Don't Forget Non-Federal Offices

I supported Doug when we both lost in '10, and was so glad he won in '12:

In the week and a half since federal and state authorities accused a pair of Northeast Kingdom developers of massive fraud, some of the state's most powerful politicians have sought to walk back their support for the projects

But there's one top pol who has little walking-back to do.

Doug Hoffer, the Democratic and Progressive state auditor, has long been critical of the federal EB-5 investor visa program, which the developers used to attract more than $350 million in foreign financing. Under EB-5, those who invest $500,000 in certain economic develop projects are eligible for a green card; if they can later show the investment generated 10 jobs, they and their families can become permanent residents of the U.S. 

In a March 2012 interview with Seven Days, most of which was never published, Hoffer questioned the program's moral underpinnings, its economic utility and its oversight structure. At the time, he called EB-5 "offensive on some levels" because it allows those with means to bypass the nation's restrictive immigration procedures. 

“It’s a policy that rewards wealth with citizenship,” he said. “They don’t need to wait in line like everybody else.”

He's been doing great work keeping an eye on how our state works, and shows that you can't just focus on the race for president if you want good governance.


April 25, 7:11 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Sunday, 04/24/2016

'Twas England bade our Wild Geese go...

...that small nations might be free.


April 24, 11:12 PM | Permalink | Comments (2)

The stone's in the midst of all.

Easter, 1916:

Too long a sacrifice
Can make a stone of the heart.   
O when may it suffice?
That is Heaven's part, our part   
To murmur name upon name,   
As a mother names her child   
When sleep at last has come   
On limbs that had run wild.   
What is it but nightfall?
No, no, not night but death;   
Was it needless death after all?
For England may keep faith   
For all that is done and said.   
We know their dream; enough
To know they dreamed and are dead;   
And what if excess of love   
Bewildered them till they died?   
I write it out in a verse—
MacDonagh and MacBride   
And Connolly and Pearse
Now and in time to be,
Wherever green is worn,
Are changed, changed utterly:   
A terrible beauty is born.

William Butler Yeats.


April 24, 9:27 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Saturday, 04/23/2016




April 23, 11:45 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)