I just got back from my monthly trip to timbuktu, where I made my regularoffering to Landlordus, the god of the land. On the way out there, Italked with a friend who I haven't spoken to for a bit. Good to keepties alive, even if by cell. One thing that struck me is that, unlikeme, this friend says things in the heat of passion that might not alwaysbe meant. Actually, most people do. I'm always careful not to -- I mightmock, or be flippant, but I never twist the truth or misrepresent myself.More people need to learn this. I don't know if this means that a blanket"It's OK" should be applied when they say something offensive or not.That's always a dilemma -- you can't both be nice and legitimize abehavior. In politics, this is known as saying "You can't do only one thing".Look at applied game theory.....
Some time ago, I was accused by another friend of being anti-american,and it was said that I hate america. Bear with me while I chew onthe idea, and perhaps enjoy some unrelated spices on the topic.I don't really care one way or the other if I'm anti-american or not -- Ihave no special loyalty to the united states, or any other nation. I holda lot against it, in history as in now, but I think little more than other'civilized' countries. Do I judge it on a different scale than how I judgeIraq/Saddam? Well, maybe -- What I react against when talking about Saddam,or perhaps Castro, is that people act as if he's completely insane, and hasno reasons for what he's doing. They drastically overstate their case, andmake no effort to learn the truth of things. What I don't typically say,because I (perhaps wrongly) think it's obvious, is that I'd far rather livein a western country than a warlord-ruled one, or in a state resembling thatof Iraq. Now, as to a second question, is it true that I judge the U.S. moreharshly than other nations? Well, maybe I do, and I might think of tworeason why I might -- firstly, all the stuff is closer to me, making it easierto get data, understand it, and making my voice somewhat louder on the topicwhen I'm here. Secondly, I guess I might see it as my duty to fight nationalism,in myself and others, so I make a special effort to shatter any type of warmfuzzies people get about the United States. Again though, that being said,it's certainly easy to do worse than the United States. I see a lot of roomfor improvement, and in many areas, if we look around, we'll see countriessurpassing the U.S. in areas. I'm not going to be lame and say thatoverall the U.S. is better, sorry :) I imagine we could imagine the worldas a classroom, and, for maximal arrogance, me as the teacher (or judge).There are lots of countries in this classroom, and the U.S. has some areaswhere it's good, and some areas where it needs some (or a lot) of improvement.It's not my favorite pupil -- I'm more attached to my ideals than toany individual nations. What I want to do is see the best features of nations,and hope, provided they're compatible, they could be mixed together into asingle system. Bad things should be wiped out. I guess sometimes I mightattempt to compensate for posturing the U.S. does too -- in the metaphor,this student would claim it's better than all the others, and use bribesand stuff to assert dominance. I want to see an end to that. But no, I don'tthink I hate america, I just have a lot of issues with it, just as Ihave issues with some other countries, while I strive to understand thatthere are often situations where simple solutions are not acceptable ordon't work.
To be cryptic, I'm again metaphorically playing a game of cards, carefullyshaking the lines of the web on which I walk, trying to summon the spider,not to where I am, but to where I want it to go. It's a delicate art,and a delightful game. How can you do what I do without letting out a laughas you feel the strings reverbrate. Maybe I'll make a mistake, maybe a bigone, or maybe I'll do what I want and win. Heck, maybe I don't even know whatI want, but like playing the game too much to care. It's all Improv, and soam I.
In the mood for research? There's a woman in the Daler Mehndi video"Jalwa", who's really amazingly beautiful. I'm not entirely sure ofher ethnicity though -- she looks like she might be part-Arab part-Hindi, orperhaps something else. If you're bored, try to find her name and ethnicity.
Mmm... indian-cooked tofu rocks.