Recall: Building and removing tension as essential art for storytelling, a shift - building and removing dignity as a regularity in life. Diversion: What kind of a shift in perspective is needed to re-seat a personality to be similarly amused by that as tension?
Some years back, I used to frequently talk with people much older than I am (nowadays, I largely don't talk to anyone). One of the most interesting concepts that seems to have disappeared over that generation gap is one that's a bit uncomfortable - the notion of the "Husband's Right". I've met a number of older people who had the perspective that a fundamental aspect of marriage is that the man provides the sustainence for the family as a duty, and among other things he has the right to have sex with his wife (in this case this right is primarily the other side of an obligation on her). At least among social circles I frequent, this concept is either moderately different or entirely absent (just as I know several people who are uninterested in traditional marriage). Personally, I think sex is an important part of my notion of being a life partner, at least during ages when sexual interest/capacity is still present. If it were absent for long periods of time in other periods, then the relationship either will become ill or is ill due to other reasons. That said, just like other faults in a relationship, I don't think it should be considered either an obligation on one party at any time (medium-scale) the other chooses or a duty - just like if love becomes absent or some other failing, lack of mutuality is a tragedy without obligation (or necessarily fault, in most cases). Occasionally I have conversations with people who hold that "Husband's Right" position though - I suspect they know that it's a concept that has fallen from being in vogue (probably due to some of the successes of the Women's Liberation movement) in today's society so they don't tend to mention it as much - it feels odd to me to be in those conversations, although I imagine my perspectives are similarly odd to them.
Amusing thought - BushJr's presidency is part of an elaborate plot to rehabilitate Richard Nixon and Henry Kissinger. I don't actually believe that, but .. it would be possible to make a lightly convincing argument. Before BushJr, as far as I know we didn't have anything like extraordinary rendition, public officials refusing to comment on what constitutes torture or what they're doing in prison camps overseas, wiretapping without warrants, heated battles between branches of government (some with telecoms in the middle), foreign policy disasters that cut America off from allies (compare to Nixon's actions on China), war under false pretenses and gagging of nonpartisian research and bureaucratic-led groups. The thing that took down Nixon/Kissinger (despite many things that probably should've) was threatening the American political process itself by authorising wiretaps of political offices of the Democratic party. As far as I know, this is one of the few areas BushJr's administration has not stepped into. Is it uniquely harmful? Perhaps our system would fall apart at the hinges if that were to fall, so it's structurally necessary to prevent at all costs damage of that kind. It's still interesting to compare the two in terms of actual harm.
Does the Kitty Genovese rape/murder say more about who was there or on conditions universal in the human state? Can people learn not to be "one of the crowd" in such cases? Riot-breakers? Two models of crowds: "We're gonna do something" versus "we want to talk and raise awareness" - having the wrong one for the circumstances is a problem. The first is a mob shouting slogans to maintain that state-of-mind, the second is a group of protesters who hopefully can spread their point of view from the initial slogan to things more designed to "draw-them-in" to actual discussion. I believe the first is overapplied, and generally like to break up, whenever possible, such groups and force them into reflection and thinking. Were the Kitty bystanders in a silent version of the same mob? Could we teach people ways that would make them incapable of giving themselves over to a mob?
There is a chance I may be in Columbus this coming weekend, depending on how conflicting events work out. This would be partly to go to a party, and partly to go to Outland on the weekend most near Halloween (which also conflict with each other, yay!). There are also things to do here... I need to decide on this soon.
Right now: Beehive. They've been playing some amusing music like Robin Scott's "Pop Muzik". People are hanging up crazy new paintings. Daydream: Goth-Industrial dancing to die Prinzen's "Hose Runter" and then "Eine Insel mit zwei Bergen" - the latter would be very silly, the first could work.