Saturday, January 3, 2015

Reprint Heaven: The Why Of Dog

Random Barking As True As It Was In The Olden Days

(From January 6, 2011)

Most people I know who cruise the Intertubes have a handful of sites which they visit regularly. They also use it for topic-specific searches (Which actor played the cop Bruce Willis punched at the end of that movie on a river which I can't remember the name of?), and just for random cruising.

Pretty pictures, writing that makes us laugh, cry, or not; funny videos. As a species, we demand our Entertainment -- and where there's entertainment, there's advertising and data mining and money to be made. Facebook knows. So does Little Lloyd Blankfein (CEO of Goldman Sachs VampSquid).

For the sites I visit regularly, I'm amazed at the amount of personal opinion about -- well, stuff that gets tossed out there, embedded like raisins or ratshit amongst more 'serious' essays about Our Life In These Times, or posts based on their professional work as financial analysts, historians, or monster truck devotees.

Opinions about the best martini, whether Jimmy Page or Rory Gallagher is the better classic rock guitarist; reports about their vacations; or why, uh, "intimate" relationships in marriage can actually be Teh Hot. It's like reading someone's diary, with misspellings, misinformation and syntax errors intact -- but, I suspect you already know this about the Intertubes.

It's the functional equivalent of a playground (or a neighborhood bar), with all the arbitrary supervision, rules you learn as you go, and ultimately organized for someone else's financial benefit. But you hang out there because it's flashy, and fun, and sometimes you're lonely and have no where else to go. Unlike the neighborhood bar, it can also be a place where everyone doesn't know your name (this blog a case in point).

Some sites are nearly all random junk tossed out of the unsorted, sock-drawer minds of people who should spend less time online (Some people shouldn't be allowed Intertube access, at all -- like refusing to sell certain people Spandex™ clothing. Ever). Occasionally, they find an acorn and publish something enlightening, but it's like hunting for a bomber in the chaff: Your radar has better things to do.

We who blog can't resist posting that personal and meaningless, opinionated Stuff, though -- because we're paradoxical creatures, who crave order and regularity and at the same time seek the "new", the random and surprising. And everybody who blogs does it.

I'm doing it right now. Woof Woof Woof Woof. Bark Bark. Bark.


  1. speaking of personal opinion, here's something i wrote in 2011:


    Recently I wrote, at another blog, "Obama has always been in the pocket of the banksters and the war party". I was immediately and angrily denounced as a "firebagger." But another commenter, an idealistic and hopeful fan of our president, wrote to ask me, "Is it an illusion that Obama is an honest man? That's a huge part of his value, to me. I believe he is. I've never heard anything substantial to the contrary. Do you think he is bought? Any specifics?"

    My reply:

    "Do you think he is bought?" Maybe you've read Catch-22, by Joseph Heller. Ostensibly a World War II novel of the black comedy genre, it is more accurate history than they teach schoolchildren (according to what I've heard - I wasn't there - before my time). Yossarian tells the shrink, "Doc, they're trying to kill me." The shrink says, "No, no, my friend. They aren't trying to kill you. They're trying to kill EVERYBODY." Somehow, Yossarian is not reassured.

    Similarly, I doubt you will be encouraged to learn that I don't think Obama in particular is bought - I think they're ALL bought.

    But you ask for specifics. First of all, "you can observe a lot just by watching." In other words, behavior counts more than promises, expressed intentions, sympathies, common values, etc. etc. etc. So let's look at the behavior.

    How is he doing on the civil liberties front, and the openness/transparency of government front? Read Glenn Greenwald at Salon.

    How is he doing on the killing of foreigners front? Read

    How is he doing on prosecuting all the con men at the finest banks and investment firms, who enriched themselves during the great fraudulent mortgage boom? Read Yves Smith at

    How is handling our current economic situation? Here I can recommend going to very establishment figures - Paul Krugman, Robert Reich - as well as less mainstream figures such as Paul Craig Roberts and Michael Hudson.

    How can such a handsome, friendly, well-educated, articulate man be a war criminal and a central cog in the machinery of the military industrial congressional financial corporate media complex, a conspiracy to use, abuse, and confuse the people, to "milk, shear, and slaughter the sheeple", metaphorically speaking? [Except that the metaphorical sheeple are, in fact, literally slaughtered.]

    'Tis a puzzlement.

    1. I still wonder about that depressed Siberian ferret which Herr Desfibradddor reported at this time, and hope that he received intervention from a Mental Health Professional™. That, or a fifth of Mackinlay's whiskey, which we were able to get back, unopened, from the Pole we had initially taken it to.

      Period of Mandatory Happy© to follow. Swell with pride for your Native Land.

  2. I regret I never encountered any further information about the animals missing from the circus in the East Siberian city of Chita. The poignancy of that report is not dulled by time, and although one would like to regard oneself as a cherished companion, as the red-breasted parakeet was, honest self-examination reveals that one also has similarities with the less well-regarded ferret, "a terrible glutton and idle to the core." As the Bard had Hamlet exclaim, " Use every man after his desert, and who should ’scape whipping? "

    Further research prompted by this reminiscence reveals that the replica Mackinlay's whiskey, never inexpensive, is now sold out. One also finds this interesting fact about ferrets:

    Trained ferrets have been successfully used for many years to assist in leading wires and cables in confined spaces in buildings and aircraft manufacture. A length of light line is attached to a harness around the ferret's chest, and the animal is coaxed to run through the confined space, pulling the lead string with it. The string is then used to pull the cables.

    1. With effort, it is possible to reform. After a period of honest self-examination, a regimen of cleansing labor -- such as cable pulling through confined spaces -- may assist in changing selfish and antisocial attitudes.

      In the spirit of Right Correction, we dream of that day when the Ferret can rejoin society as a cheerful and productive member of the Collective.

      All Praise To The Leader!


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