May 12, 2008

the transformation of waste
is perhaps the oldest pre-occupation of man

Christopher Merlyn, Clockwork, 2007

* Top ten conservative idiots. excerpt:

9. John McCain

"Burma's ruling military junta has come under intense scrutiny in the past week, after Cyclone Nargis ravaged the country and killed tens of thousands of people. First the government refused outside aid, then they went ahead with a dubious referendum, then, after deciding to take some aid shipments after all, they were 'quickly relabeled to say that the goods had been donated courtesy of the junta,' according to Time magazine.

"Even Laura Bush slammed the junta last week at a rare press conference (before moving on to more important matters.) Indeed, Burma's dictatorship is 'widely criticized as one of the world's most oppressive and corrupt regimes,' according to Dan Froomkin of the Washington Post.

"So what does this have to do with John McCain?

"Last week we learned that the McCain campaign has selected Doug Goodyear to manage this year's Republican National Convention. Goodyear is described as a 'veteran operative and Arizonan' by Newsweek, who was picked for his 'management experience and expertise.' Oh yes, and I should probably also mention that Goodyear is 'CEO of DCI Group, a consulting firm that earned $3 million last year lobbying for ExxonMobil, General Motors and other clients.'

"So what? Well it turns out that not only is Doug Goodyear a veteran GOP operative, expert manager, and fatcat oil industry lobbyist...

"Potentially more problematic: the firm was paid $348,000 in 2002 to represent Burma's military junta, which had been strongly condemned by the State Department for its human-rights record and remains in power today. Justice Department lobbying records show DCI pushed to 'begin a dialogue of political reconciliation' with the regime. It also led a PR campaign to burnish the junta's image, drafting releases praising Burma's efforts to curb the drug trade and denouncing 'falsehoods' by the Bush administration that the regime engaged in rape and other abuses."

"Yikes. So does the man who John McCain handpicked to run this year's Republican National Convention have anything to say about his association with the Burmese junta?

"'It was our only foreign representation, it was for a short tenure, and it was six years ago,' Goodyear told NEWSWEEK.

"With an explanation that good, I'm surprised Goodyear felt the need to quit."

* Bizarre/inventive bongs.

* David Berman's footnotes to Strange Victory, Strange Defeat.


from Lookout Mountain, Lookout Sea DC358

-Title and chorus derived from:
"Strange Victory" by Sara Teasdale, Mac Millan (1933)
"Strange Victory" a film by Leo Hurwitz (1948)
"Strange Victory: Hitler’s Conquest of France" by Ernest R. May (2000)
"Strange Defeat:A Statement of Evidence Written in 1940" by Marc Bloch

-"in other words, don’t flinch, don’t foul, and hit the line hard"
taken from Theodore Roosevelt’s Address to the Boy’s Progressive League,
New York City, recorded July 3, 1913:

"In this way I desire to greet the Boy's Progressive League at their meeting in the Hotel Manhattan. I feel that the Progressive Party should appeal peculiarly to the young men--and therefore to the boys--who ought to be the next generation of voters. The principles for which we stand are the principles of fair play and a square deal for every man and every woman in the United States. A square deal politically, a square deal in matters social and industrial. I wish to see you boys join the Progressive Party, and act in that party and as good citizens in the same way I'd expect any one of you to act in a football game. In other words, don't flinch, don't foul, and hit the line hard."

-"virtue gone to seed" is found in Ralph Waldo Emerson’s Essay on Manners (1841):
"Fashion… virtue gone to seed: it is a kind of posthumous honor. It does not often caress the great, but the children of the great: it is a hall of the Past. It usually sets its face against the great of this hour. Great men are not commonly in its halls: they are absent in the field: they are working, not triumphing. Fashion is made up of their children; of those, who, through the value and virtue of somebody, have acquired lustre to their name, marks of distinction, means of cultivation and generosity, and, in their physical organization, a certain health and excellence, which secures to them, if not the highest power to work, yet high power to enjoy. The class of power, the working heroes, the Cortez, the Nelson, the Napoleon, see that this is the festivity and permanent celebration of such as they; that fashion is funded talent; is Mexico, Marengo, and Trafalgar beaten out thin; that the brilliant names of fashion run back to just such busy names as their own, fifty or sixty years ago. They are the sowers, their sons shall be the reapers, and their sons, in the ordinary course of things, must yield the possession of the harvest to new competitors with keener eyes and stronger frames. The city is recruited from the country. In the year 1805, it is said, every legitimate monarch in Europe was imbecile. The city would have died out, rotted, and exploded, long ago, but that it was reinforced from the fields. It is only country which came to town day before yesterday, that is city and court today."

* "Our only idea was to get rid of the dross as soon as possible, but at the same time have as much pleasure and enjoyment as the country would afford." -- Kit Carson


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