Watched Requiem for a Dream, which I've had on DVD for several years now and thought I'd seen before but apparently haven't. Amusement: Jennifer Connelly is on a dock *again* in front of the ocean, just like House of Sand and Fog, just like Dark City. This is more disturbing than HoSaF though, and also touches on meaning-of-life type things. Although we're tempted to dismiss the mother character for her obsession of being on TV (or at least I am - desire for fame and TV both really bother me), her pointing out that she has nothing else..
"What have I got, Harry? Why should I even make the bed or wash the dishes? I do them, but why should I? I'm alone. Seymour's gone, you're gone, I have no one to take care of. Anybody. Everybody. What do I have? I'm lonely, Harry. I'm old."
I identified with her there - her obsession may feel arbitrary and ugly, but it does keep her together. There are times that I'm reminded how arbitrary life is, how the reasons that keep us going can differ so much from person to person.. this is why life versus death is such a funny thing - in the end we all achieve the latter, but do we ever have a very solid reason to want one or the other? Does her character's recognition of that and embrace of an illusion that she can see behind really feel that unrealistic? I don't know how many people IRL ever step back and see the roots of their reason for living - often momentum or some notion of sin of going the other way might be an honest answer. I think this is quite different than looking for one's values - one can value things more than life or beyond life (if one cares for dignity of one's corpse or wants to be remembered fondly, this is a value beyond life). I recall some discussions with philosophers who were toying with a form of solipsism where they indicated that if they knew they were going to die, they may as well end their life in whatever way they pleased, disjoint from moral/ethical concerns they might normally have, because from their perspective (and possibly objectively, if they were to admit a subjective/objective divide) the world would cease to be on their death... nevermind that they were portraying the idea, I think, mainly to toss it around with others, it's an interesting contrary view...
Jayne Leathers (cat) apparently likes my accordion - it scares the hell out of Tortfeasor and Beefalo. Interesting.
It's interesting watching the coverage of Chavez in the media, in particular the approval the legislature gave to his new constitution (in particular particular the clause removing the term limits for his office). My particular thoughts on Chavez are conflicted (I like the idea of the multinationals being forced out and the nationalisation of industries, but I really dislike his decision to court Iran and find his handling of media concerns to be very problematic) - I find the term limits matter to be complex - I wonder if the elections still will be democratic (that is, would he step down if he lost an election, and will the elections be fair and similarly frequent?). I probably wouldn't judge him strongly either way on the matter (although I would rather the government not pretend to be democratic if it is not - I'm not particularly attached to democracy but openness/honesty is relaly important to me), but I wonder what his plans are and how his hyperactive foreign policy that occasionally goes right to the people rather than foreign states will serve him. I believe Chavez to be a bright guy with interesting ideas and an urge to experiment - the long term effects of this will be something to watch. Somewhat related, I find Iran's developing ties with South American countries to be fascinating - despite huge ideological gaps, maybe this is the next evolution of the non-aligned movement?