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Trump as Walt Whitman?

Thursday, May 5th, 2016

[ by Charles Cameron — a drive-by DoubleQuote ]
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Donald Trump
, as revealed in The Atlantic, as tweeted by Peter R Neumann:

Trump atlantic

Walt Whitman, as self-sung:

Do I contradict myself?
Very well then I contradict myself,
(I am large, I contain multitudes.)

**

The Question:
would you want a Walt Whitman for President?

Brevity in Paradox

Monday, May 2nd, 2016

[ by Charles Cameron — or as John Cage once said, I have nothing to say and I am saying it and that is poetry ]
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suzuki_enso-2-sm

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JV Cunningham has a poem which runs in its entirety:

Life flows to death as rivers to the sea
And life is fresh and death is salt to me.

Brilliant and brief. Samuel Beckett goes him one better, writing:

My birth was my death. Or put it another way. My birth was the death of me. Words are scarce.

It’s the scarcity that interests me here. Earlier, in Godot, he had written:

They give birth astride of a grave, the light gleams an instant, then it’s night once more.

That’s too wordy. “My birth was the death of me” packs a colloquial punch, while “My birth was my death” is more succinct and correspondingly powerful.

**

Birth > death.

They are opposites, obviously, and almost tautologically so — and yet there is a less-than-obvious “double meaning” to them — when brought into close conjunction they can be said to fold the universe from many back into one.

This business of the conjunction of opposites is one which Carl Jung made the centerpiece of much of his later work, writing for instance:

Whoever identifies with an intellectual standpoint will occasionally find his feeling confronting him like an enemy in the guise of the anima; conversely, an intellectual animus will make violent attacks on the feeling standpoint. Therefore, anyone who wants to achieve the difficult feat of realizing something not only intellectually, but also according to its feeling-value, must for better or worse come to grips with the anima/animus problem in order to open the way for a higher union, a coniunctio oppositorum. This is an indispensable prerequisite for wholeness.

Consider the current US election campaign in this light…

**

Shakespeare’s “insult, exult, and all at once” in As you Like It, and Dylan Thomas’ “Curse, bless, me now with your fierce tears, I pray” in Do not go gentle are 0other instances of brevity in paradox.

Beckett, Jung, Shakespeare, Dylan Thomas — heady company.

Ted Cruz on the horns of the apocalyptic dilemma

Thursday, April 28th, 2016

[ by Charles Cameron — give me that End Times religion ]
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Tablet DQ cruz king or lucifer

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You may recall that this sort of question has arisen before..

Tablet DQ obama christ or antichrist

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Sources:

  • LA Times, Ted Cruz is lucifer in the flesh
  • Drudge Report, Ted is rthe Anointed One

  • Web page, Barack Obama the Antichrist
  • Web page, Is Barack Obama the Messiah?
  • The above links may be of little help, actually: the LA Times link is straightforward, the Drudge Report link I’ve taken from the Gateway Pundit since I couldn’t find the drudsge original — and the two Obama links are from years ago, and one of them no longer works — why the otherone still does is frankly a bit of a mystery!

    Wealth redistribution: from rich to poor, or from goats to sheep?

    Saturday, April 23rd, 2016

    [ by Charles Cameron — surplus and lack vs good and evil ]
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    SPEC DQ Sanders Cruz

    I have to admit, I’m used to wealth redistribution being a concept on the left — socialist, whether in the sense indistinguishable from communist, often found in the US, or in the more moderate sense of the word found more frequently in Europe — as proposed by Bernie Sanders in the upper panel, and was surprised to see Sen. Cruz‘ father using the same concept, albeir in a different sense, lower panel, on the right.

    As my title suggests, the distinction to be drawn here is between the material distinction between rich and poor, and the spiritual distinction between sheep and goats.

    **

    For a different distinction, see also Tim Furnish‘s comment in his book Sects, Lies and the Caliphate “that liberals are almost always messianic, while conservatives tend more toward the apocalyptic”:

    It’s certainly the Democrat party, for the most part, that worships the idea of our elected democratic officials as messianic wealth-redistributors, assisted by their hordes of bureaucratic disciples; while the GOP (not unreasonably, perhaps) obsesses about apocalyptic demise—whether politically, theologically, or both.

    Furnish is writing in response to Anne Barbeau Gardiner‘s review of Ross Douthat‘s book, Bad Religion: How We Became a Nation of Heretics here — making use of a distinction which comes from Douthat himself:

    The fourth heresy is American nationalism, which has two sides, messianic and apocalyptic. The messianic side turns democracy into a religion capable of doing the “redemptive work that orthodoxy reserves for Christ and his Church,” while the apocalyptic side envisions our national history as a “downhill slide.” Today these two sides are “bipartisan afflictions.” Each takes its turn in the driver’s seat — the messianic when a favored political party is in power, the apocalyptic when it is out of power — with the result that they go through cycles of “utopian hopes and millennial angst.” Moreover, the two parties are “theological worlds unto themselves,” creating a Manichean landscape of good versus evil where a Christian is pressured to conform his “theology to ideology.”

    **

    Within a purely secular context, transfers of wealth happen all the time, in regular clock time, by means of gift, trade, theft and plunder.

    Within a Christian theological context, however, humans taking it upon themselves to separate the sheep from the goats is surely no different from separating the wheat from the tares — and as such, distinctly not something to be done until “the harvest” — in “the end times”.

    Matthew 13. 24-30:

    Another parable put he forth unto them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man which sowed good seed in his field: But while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went his way. But when the blade was sprung up, and brought forth fruit, then appeared the tares also. So the servants of the householder came and said unto him, Sir, didst not thou sow good seed in thy field? from whence then hath it tares? He said unto them, An enemy hath done this. The servants said unto him, Wilt thou then that we go and gather them up? But he said, Nay; lest while ye gather up the tares, ye root up also the wheat with them. Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them: but gather the wheat into my barn.

    And that’s a very different scenario, in which the timing is by definition unknown.

    Watch out, or the DoubleTweets will get you

    Friday, April 8th, 2016

    [ by Charles Cameron — Hillary Clinton hoist as the contrapuntal mind springs into action ]
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    Hilary Clinton recently tweeted:

    That was March 26th this year.

    I have a certain fondness for the Medici, who sponsored the Platonic Academy under Marsilio Ficino, and more or less gave us the Florentine Renaissance, and for Paul and Mary Conover Mellon, who sponsored the magnificant Bollingen Series of books, starting with Where the Two Came to Their Father: A Navaho War Ceremonial, Joseph Campbell‘s collaboration with Jeff King and Maud Oakes..

    But then I’m also highly appreciative of St Francis, the poverello of Assisi.. go figure.

    Thing is, Bernie Sanders had tweeted pretty much the same thing just a week earlier:

    **

    But hey, wait a minute, Hilary had also tweeted in June of 2015:

    — so now who has the “first mover” advantage? — plus she had graphics!

    — and hold on, even that tweet drew an almost immediate tweet-back in refutation:

    — from the redoubtable Marc Andreessen, no less.

    **

    Nor are those the only ways those tweets of hers can bounce back on the Clinton campaign. Here’s another:

    I suspect, btw, Xavier Perez swiped that from Kevin Tulppo on Facebook a couple of days before..

    **

    I’m not really much of a political animal — feeling powerfully drawn to Justin Erik Halldór Smith‘s remark today

    some questions have complicated histories and there might be no right side to take

    — but in this entire by turns provocative, hilarious, sad, infuriating, and by now deeply fatiguing campaign season thus far, there has only been one image giving me a sense of quiet delight in one of the candidates..

    Bernie Sanders reads Rimbaud

    On the left, Bernie Sanders as a far younger man — I can vaguely recall being a far younger man myself — and on the right, the book he was about to read, or had just been reading..

    Rimbaud, poetry. Ah, youth.


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