John-Birching the School

Recreating (and advancing) pk’s censored domains: Macroinformation.org & Knatz.com / Teaching / Society / NoHier / DDD / Deschooling / “Rants” /
@K. 2000 10 04

John-Birching Church … School …

Inventing a new use for an old term: John-Birth: for a minority to wage guerrilla warfare against an institution the majority sees no harm in.

My Social Pathologies module on Law and Order argues that kleptocratic law and order is a front, a stalking horse, a cover for theft and fraud: it means that the Jews “order” the Canaanites, the Romans order the Jews, the WASPS order the spicks … The WASPS and Romans don’t have to obey their own laws: they are the law. (It would be hard to think of how many more ways the Constitution could be violated than Nixon did right from the White House.)

My Social Pathologies module on Legitimacy argues that everything in a kleptocracy is legitimate: by magic. All the kleptocratic legislators have to do is write a law that says so.

Religions, with no authority other than Hope, promise that someday (in another life) there will be justice. In this life, justice is whatever happens in the Justice Department. They got a rubber stamp that says so.

A college roommate of mine moved back home on graduation. A visit decades later proved this devout Catholic to have teamed up with the local rural “radical” Catholics (a very different breed from the urban radical Catholics that founding FLEX exposed me to (see Illich). These radical Catholics, when not smearing blood on abortionists, believed that the true Pope had been abducted by the Church and some puppet put in his place. Crazy? Sure. But when was it ever also not true on some level? Christianity has it that the Temple of Jerusalem was run by thugs misrepresenting God: God’s supposedly true representative got worse than mugged by them. I believe that the legitimacy of the United States, if there ever was any, lasted about three minutes: till the Whiskey War. If there was any legitimacy left by the time of “Vietnam,” or of Nixon, there certainly was none after.

What legitimacy — genuine, not kleptocratic — do schools have? My scrapbook of notes on School’s Purpose offers additional reverse-engineering of school’s true purpose (links to my Academic Bestiary (pk School Stories) where I marshal evidence from my personal experience, all too typical, that schools hobble both honesty and intelligence while promoting and licensing fraudulent puppets). I repeat these points throughout my home page and will until I see some evidence that someone gets them. (Or till I croak: then you’re out of luck.) (Except that nature keeps producing occasional honest, intelligent, dedicated, fearless … human beings despite kleptocracy and its governments, churches, school systems …)

The Big Picture:

The Jews said they had the real God.

Then the Christians said they, the Jews, didn’t; they, the Christians, did. (Wasn’t that also a kind of theft?

Did the Christians steal the Jews’ God? Oh well: for all I know the Jews stole him in the first place.)

But how about the subversions of theology as well as scholarship practiced by the Church if not from day one, then certainly from the time of the Nicene Creed? The Church (churches: Roman and Byzantine) called honest inquiry “heresy” the way Eugene McCarthy branded every non-robot a “Communist”. The Church based its authority on St. Jerome’s Latin translation of the Greek Bible. When old MSs for the Septuagint were newly found, the Church made the study of Greek (how else could you read them?) a capital crime! No evidence in this regime, please. Then they threatened Galileo with torture: because he had new evidence as well as new arguments. So what “true Pope” can my old roomy possibly have in mind?

John Birch
I’m not much on politics, but someone once explained to me what a “John Bircher” meant:

the Birchers said that Capitalism was already at war with Communism: the official US just didn’t see it.

Crazy? Sure. But there’s a level of truth there too. (Presuming you imagine that there’s such a thing as “Capitalism” arrangeable on one side and “Communism” on another. In truth, all kleptocracies are capitalist, elements of communism creep into all of them (even if it’s just communism among the barons: federal bailouts for drunken barons like Chrysler; none for the multi-deracinated descendants of slaves).

Since history won’t permit any rational definition of God, we can concede that this word, so ambiguous as to be meaningless, has any number of unchallengeable representative: Jews, Jesus, Christians, Muslims … The claim can’t be tested: so who can deny it? I say that god, a concept I do “define” has no representatives: except …

everything.

.

If you’ll qualify only human representatives you might count Galileo, Fuller, Bateson, Prigogine, Diamond, Illich … and me. (What the majority of that short list has in common is a history of being thrown out of kleptocratic institutions, as well as having their stuff stolen by those same institutions. Fuller’s geodesics were stolen by the US Army. The egregious internet doesn’t even credit Illich or me while it subverts our ideas.) (It’s the demands of rhetoric, not truth, that keeps these lists short.)

OK. Now I want to John-Birch schools: making “John-Birch a transitive verb.

The schools are worse than worthless; the world just won’t admit it. I was never a political Bircher. I was never a Communist (except insofar as I once thought I was a Christian: a would-be sharer). I never opposed Communism any more than I opposed Capitalism. Hell, I now and again embodied capitalism. But I’ll now be a John-Bircher for the quality of learning. Say you’re a Christian in the Second Century CE. Your parents send you to the “priest.” He tells you not to lie and so forth. Fine. Now say you’re a “Christian” in 1350, or 1450, or 1550 … You’re sent to the priest. He says don’t lie. …

Wait a minute …

You’re a brand new US citizen in August 1776. Your representative says, don’t steal. OK. What we just stole from the natives and from King George doesn’t count. What we stole from nature we’re not even aware of. Let’s not laugh in his face: not yet. (And what we stole from the “savages” whose Great Law of Peace we plagiarized in our Constitution … savages have no right to civilized ideas.) (You have to be a “Christian” to understand that logic.) But a citizen in 1780? In 1932? In 1968? In 1974?

The scholars who defied the Church’s death sentence and studied Greek anyway formed the universities of the Renaissance. They eked out their living selling exposure to the rare MSs they’d dug up. They were an alternative to the Church’s view of things. The Church had the monopoly on what could be said about scripture; the universities made sure that that monopoly did not extend to non-scripture. But now that modern church, the State, monopolizes what can be said about everything! There is no alternate view. Information is managed. By the brainwashed brainwashers, for the future brainwashed brainwashers.

And it doesn’t matter what the Constitution or the Law says: the law has no meaning other that what behavior is actually tolerated, subsidized: proscribed or punished. One banned book, one interrupted speaker, one impoverished scholar falsifies the whole caboodle.

Ivan Illich proposed an alternative to universal brainwashing. I offered to implement it. Others also soon appeared. Store all public learning resources on computers: give all publics uncensored access to it: as a publicly funded institution. No: not just “citizens”; anybody. No, don’t let members of the public monkey with the main frame; let them ask a techie, let the techie get it for them: just like a library where stack privileges are not universal, but library privileges are: you can get the book; you just may not be allowed to get it for yourself: endangering the entire commons. (This was before PCs, remember.)

I took what Illich said one (strongly implied) step further: data base everything. One free informational institution (politically free: obviously the infrastructure has to cost something) could out-evolve not just schools but newspapers and governments. (Also note: a “real” democratic government would have thought of all this two seconds after cybernetics were first explored. None did. Now no government has any rights in the matter.)

I never heard of Illich until the first Deschooling article arrived at my doorstop, headlined in red, on the front page of the New York Review. Whatever date that issue bears (somewhere around 1970), actual delivery was typically a week or two early. I was however already engaged in many of the same issues.

On the one hand:

1. I may have feared that the schools were evil on my first day of kindergarten. I knew it by the fourth grade. I didn’t regard it as mattering much in public school because no one takes the public schools seriously. It mattered enormously at the university level, particularly at the doctoral level.

I hated school in practice And in principal: compulsory schooling in a “free” society?
and

2. Philosophically, Illich’s diagnosis fit right in with my doctoral thesis.
Abelard said that there are no universals; only particulars Those who said that only universals were really real won the war. (Temporarily: always temporarily.) Scholastic “Realism” triumphed over “Nominalism”.

Authority is based on universals. But the universe is filled with particulars. All we can actually see with our eyes are the particulars. Besides, the authorities cheat. Everyone by Chaucer’s day knew that. (It was still incredibly audacious to say so.)

Chaucer’s Wife of Bath said she’d take experience (evidence) over authority. Shakespeare’s sonnets follow suit and pit reasoning and emoting by universals (resonating with authority) against actual experience with actual particulars: a girl friend with syphilis. The Fair Love sonnets come first (in the only version we know). They are the most moving, genuinely. The Dark Lady comes last. Sure we get high: then we have a hangover. Only after the hangover do we suspect something was wrong with the high. Resurrect the medieval Scholastic controversy and you can reason it out: our ideals are bullshit. The wrong side won. (Temporarily.) We light a candle in church; at home we flick a switch. The switch works because of Abelard, not because of his tormentors. It works because of Occam, not Aquinas. And Shakespeare dramatizes the whole thing. Right below our level of consciousness.

My professors heard me. For years. Repeated when it counted, they just interrupted and insulted me. Insulted the entire intellectual enterprise. Gee, I thought Chaucer’s Wife of Bath’s Tale was about “the wo that is in marriage”. (It’s true the professor had asked me about the tale, not the Prologue. She interrupted me before I could get to it.)

When Luther realized that the Church was getting things wrong, he challenged them. Protestants are John Birchers against the Church. The Church has no authority: the Church cheats. Better to be dead, murdered by the Vatican, than to be a priest. Christians are John Birchers against the Temple of Jerusalem. God gave you a chance: and you blew it. Illich is a Catholic Luther. He’s a priest, but still: he challenged the Church. “If the Catholic Church wished to become Christian,” he said, “It must

Give up its property

&

Deprofessionalize its priesthood.

I tailored his remarks to my “church” but delivered the remarks not to that church but to its parishioners: the public. If the United States (or any kleptocracy) wished to become democratic, it must

Give up its property &

Disestablish schools and deprofessionalize teaching.

The courts today continue to advance a great deal of credibility to experts: meaning people with degrees. I say that having a degree Post Illich, Post FLEX is like being a priest after Luther (or after Jesus, or after Francis …) After Jesus (if the story is true), Jews should have been too embarrassed to be Jews to admit it (unless they’re saying that the story is not true.) After Abelard, after Galileo, after Luther … after Illich, Catholics should be too embarrassed to be Catholic to admit it. (What true Pope?) After the Whiskey War (if not after everything before it), after Sutter … after Vietnam … Americans should etc. And after pk, courts should be too embarrassed (to be courts) … At least too embarrassed to admit degrees as anything but grounds for suspicion of dishonesty if not outright stupidity. (Was my medieval professor really stupid? Or was she just pretending? Either way, my other professors showed solidarity with her Anti-intellectualism. We don’t want no real scholarship in this degree factory.

Walter Reed’s detractors can always gang up on him in his own life time: it was a minority of doctors who were willing to imagine a connection between bugs and disease. Most doctors could conceive of no relations between their filthy hands and sepsis in a wound.

First we had a contract out on Einstein, then we deified him. How many geniuses got shouted down without ever getting brushed off and put in a museum like Van Gogh? With FLEX, the society could have been truly mapped. For the first time. Ever.
The war is old, very old. People are just too dishonest and too stupid to see it.

See also Math.

Keywords deschooling, FLEX, John Birch Society, church, school, network

Deschool Menu

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Mises Reading Notes

/ Reading Notes /

Ludwig von Mises, The ANTI-CAPITALISTIC MENTALITY, 1956

Meritocracy
Never mind, these notes are ghastly: I’ll start again, important stuff, from scratch. First, on Merit.

2016 08 23 PM I’ve been reading von Misis for twenty-off hours now. and I see clearly what’s wrong: he discusses meritocracy versus class society: and he’s right about everything except: his feudal society is and was real; his meritocracy is imagined, not real. There’s never been a true meritocracy: people claim merit counts the way Christians claim to be Christian: without proof. Without God’s Judgment. Ask Tessler how meritorious the meritocracy was. Ask Illich. Ask me!

What nonsense: I just wrote “true” meritocracy. Where do humans get the arrogance to believe that they could determine merit and determine it truly? It’s not a level playing field, no advantaged players would ever permit leveling to be administered. Hypocrisy is what we’re good at; not determining merit. Oh, we can appoint merit: like assigned Tessla’s patents to Marconi; but could we be right? Would God agree without our judgments?
I don’t want God judging either: I want nature to rule. I want evolution to be tolerated: and not cheated on.

2016 08 23 My son became a student of von Mises a decade or more ago, has been encouraging me to read von Mises, gave me the e-books, gave me the kindle. Till yesterday, I hadn’t. Yesterday I did, and some more today, and plan to tomorrow. Important things to say in detail and depth. Just a scrap today:

In money-making the movie star outstrips the philosopher.

The class of those who have the ability to think their own thoughts is through an unbridgeable gulf separated from the class of those who cannot.

First I’m finally reading the von Mises. Second, I’m sharing notes with bk. Next I’ll post here some of those notes. bk & I have never been on the same side of the fence on many of these issues: bk applauds material wealth, applauds standards of living; I don’t. I’m for freedom such that freedom models natural law. If our behavior kills us, I oppose interference with our sinking, or swimming. I oppose interference.
So seems von Mises to, except that I founded FLEX; and he didn’t know about it. His followers ever since have ignored FLEX, show zero understanding of what was offered.

Ah! a jewel, a gem!

under capitalism. Here everybody’s station in life depends on his own doing.

Reminds me of Ivan Illich’s comment on “meritocracy”: if all is based on merit, then there’s no excuse!
If Jesus is crucified in BC Jerusalem it’s the Jews fault and Caesar’s fault: if Jesus is crucified in the US (which he is, every day) it’s Jesus’ fault?!
If Kepler is ignored by the flatearthers, is that Kepler’s fault? or is it the fault of the flatearthers?
Nonsense for humans in a kleptocracy to talk about merit: whether capitalist or not!

Silly me, I’m always talking about Jesus: turns the rational deist-atheists off. Try this: Lillian Hellman was blackballed by the Macarthyites: she had had Broadway successes, then she didn’t have Broadway anything. This is her fault? She chose her politics, therefore she chose the results of her politics?
My committe interrupted me, still doesn’t know what my Shakespeare thesis is, for ten years they hadn’t get it, and now for another forty-six years they still don’t get it: that’s my fault, is it?
My story was selected, then sabotages: that’s my fault? It is as much as it’s Hellman’s fault. Or Jesus’ fault: he should have realized that if he stuck up for God, for good behavior, for an honest temple, it was going to cost him.

Here, add these examples: Sutter invited all to help him find a land route west. He found it himself, no help from us. Sutter invited all to help him develop the Sacramento Valley. We didn’t, he developed it himself. He built his mill, trained his army, everything was going great, his was a sovereign state, he had treaties with Mexico, the US, and with Russia … and gold was found in his creek. Goodbye new Helvetia. That’s his fault? Was the earthquake Darwin was surprised by his fault?
Crazy Horse won the battle, so DC sent more worriors: that was Crazy Horse’s fault? Fruits of capitalism?

Oh, and Tessler!
Tessler inivented wireless technology: after he had developed AC. Thomas Edison refused to pay his bonuses. The US Patent Office gave his patents to Marconi! This is Tessler’s fault? Sure: if he had been shorter, had different hair coloring. He should have sold TuttiFrutti, not invented the future: a future he was allowed little part of.

Hear “merit” only as an irony, a condition men are incapable of judging. Men judge merit, but judge without humility, without wisdom, bereft of truth.

Some of this is so very good:

throw a veil of comradeship and colleagueship over the reality of competition.

Juvenile Jealosy
I’m feeling humiliated remembering an incident from the first assignment I ever gave in the first class I ever taught. Freshman English, 1967. I knew I would teach a number of forms of writing, all Standard Written English, in the semester. Two forms I did not plan to schedule: two forms so familiar we take them for granted: the standard personal letter and the standard business letter. I decided on a plan to mention them without wasting much time on them. My assignment for the class was to write me a personal letter, following the personal letter form of return address, date, greeting: body: closing, signature. Tell me who you are, what your interest are, help me get to know you: follow the form. And, in a PS, note what addition would have made your letter a business letter.

The letters were submitted, I read them. Jeez, what a lot to absorb. I was feeling proud of myself and fond of my interesting students when I got one I did not like: it turned my stomach, made more hostile. I cursed myself for my glibness in exposing this pour soul to my contempt. This writer, female, barely eighteen, told a story against an enemy, attributed malice to the enemy, then dismissed the enemy, saying: “She’s just jealous.”
An immature bit of casuistry if there ever was one: or so I thought.
I had to grade these papers, I didn’t believe in grades but I had to retreat at the first skirmish: I gave her a C minus: and felt like an idio: for the rest of my life! That was 1967, now it’s 2016. forty-nine years of guilt.

And now I see von Mises explaining the psychology of those who hate capitalism: glib, wading-pool deep: They’re just jealous.

2016 08 25 I want to tie this in with my current reading of Joseph Campbell on Buddhism: another case where the thinking starts with its conclusions, everything sort of recognizable but nothing proved: you start with rebirth, and dogmatically assert that nothing else is possible. As Sylvan Saudan said, “Nothing is impossible: until you try it.” Reason must allow for every possible experiment.

2016 08 25 von Mises’ comparison of European “society” and American “society” is invaluable: great; chapter 6. THE ANTI-CAPITALISTIC BIAS OF AMERICAN INTELLECTUALS; but, I can’t read any more of it, I abandon the book. He doesn’t know about my FLEX, my offering of a cybernetic free market. I’m up to here with such ignorance. Willful ignorance.

Reading Notes A — L By Author M — Z
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Resurrection Progress

/ K. /

When federal judge Martinez, Fort Pierce FL, censored a few folders from one of my half-dozen or more domains in February 2007, APlus.net, my host, destroyed all of my data for all of my domoains: PKImaging.com, Knatz.com, Macroinformation.org …

When the fed spit me out of jail that October I got back to my house stripped by the FBI of all my computers, all my digital data. Much of my paper work was there but how much there wasn’t I will never know, I know no way to tell: except to seek a particular document and either find it or not. Very uncertain: except for one thing: freedom of speech is an utter fiction, citizens rights are an utter fiction: the kleptocrats can do whatever they can get away with, and so far, they get away with practically anything: torture, murder … censorship … ecocide …

Anyway, I had had approximately 4,000 files on line: text, graphics: some a paragraph or two, some book length: some actually books: I published Ivan Illich books after the culture purged copies from public places, from university libraries … Well, I had a half dozen blogs in 2006-’07, hundreds of posts, and they still seem to remain untouched by the fed. So: I founded pKnatz.wordpress.com blog and republished censored files and by-kill files. If the fed juggernaut in murdering me, swerves into a crowd of people all of whom get chopped up, my death isn’t the only murder to prosecute. The fed is responsible for what it deliberately violated the Constitution to censor, my NYU files, and also is responsible for destroying everyting that APlus.net, shoved, destroyed. Think of this: You’ve got your finger on the trigger of a weapon, the fed shoves me and shoves me into you: you can’t help but pull the trigger … All those murders are on the fed: in heaven, if not on earth.

OK, now it’s 2016 08 21. I still don’t have all 4,000 filess reposted and augmented. (Neither did I have much help in resurrecting the couple of thousand I have got back up.) But I do have those I have: well over two thousand and several hundred. And the blog hundreds, many of them, are still at those blogs. Those that aren’t, that were deleted, I deled after I’d migrated them to pKnatz, alias Knatz.com.

So: I’m still doing it, still resurrecting: and augmenting, editing, expanding, not to mention adding. I’m deaf, I’m half blind, going blinder by the day. Still I slug away at it.

Does it do any good? None that I can tell. But I know this. If three hundred million Americans claim to practice free speech while they actually coil and quiver, while at least one individual, say pk, the deschooler, actually practices free speech: not just free, independent, intelligent, original (however much rant and vitriol has also come to be mixed in, it’s better than if three hundred million Americans claim to practice free speech while they actually coil and quiver and no independent intelligent individuals speak up and out.

It’s important to distinguish ideal from actual. Using theological metaphors, falsehoods are fertilized here; the truth is fertilized in heaven. If we see no truth here, except dripping from dungeon walls, don’t think there’s no truth nowhere.

About K.

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Received Wisdom of Buddha

/ Cosmology … Theology … Ethics /

I’m going to do something silly, something vain: I’m going to argue, to quarrel, rationally (ha ha), with a few familiar tenets of Buddhism. I know better, you know better, come with me and let’s do it anyway. Bear with me, there really is a point coming.

We’ll put religion in its place, then religion will put reason in its place, which is no where too near the average human.
it’s a mess soon after my start, fixing it will take time, and inspiration. Comments from the Peanut Gallery are welcome, hope they come, hope they help. I’m getting old, too bad no one understood what I said when it wasn’t beyond me.

Buddha sat under the tree. He was a Hindu of course, believe in Samsara, the cycle of birth, death, rebirth. He saw it as a run around. His goal is to get off the merry-go-round, graduate from the circle: achieve perfection, a perfect life, then advance to nothingness. Bingo, jackpot: no more rebirths, no more perfection.

Buddhism, like Hinduism, starts with its conclusions.

If you know the results of your experiment before you perform your experiment there’s no point in performing the experiment: nothing can be learned. We learn not by probing but by sitting under a tree. Examining your belly button, with your eyes closed, is wisdom.

Why am I picking on Buddha? It’s no worse than any other religion that starts at its finish line. My poor story Release, not one person ever got it that I know of: including Ivan Illich for whom I wrote it! I’ll start this again, better.

Quoting from Joseph Campbell, Myths To Live By:

For seven days, at ease beneath a fifth tree, the Buddha, considering, thought: “This cannot be taught.”

Campbell himself adds: “For indeed, illumination cannot be communicated.”

We go, “Ooo, true, true”. The Solomon poet writes “All is vanity”. “Ooo, true, true”, we go to that too.

Campbell points out repeatedly, these insights are mythic; not scientific, not forensic. Remember that and the trouble we get into, while far from zero, is less.

I was just watching a doc on a plant in Vietname that attracts dung beetles with a stench of seeming decay. The beetle tries to climb out, the slippery slope defeats him. The plant dusts the dung beetles with pollen. Once the beetles are saturated with the geneic code of the plant, the plant reactualizes its sides, the beetle climbs out, goes off, pollinates other stink-of-death plants. Other plants use similar structures to eat the insects; this plant just delays them in their travels till this plant’s messages are post-marked. Note: the beetle doesn’t have to know it’s carrying pollen to be carrying pollen.

It’s gonna take a couple of drafts to say what I mean. One can get into trouble arguing with religious metaphors. Notice: if I argue with Jesus, I may see Jesus talking to me, but will my girl or my son or my neighbor see Jesus present in the conversation? Trouble everywhere, that’s our doom. I’m donna do it anyway.

Buddha’s imputed wisdom is not objectively established however much we may assent to it.

Attributed to Buddha is the conclusion that all life produces sorrow, pain, frustration. Further, all effer at amelioration is vain. … Like Solomon’s this conclusion is not verifiable, not falsifiable. In fact, examined logically, it’s nonsense. It’s as “true” as saying “This sentence is a lie”: it can’t be true!

more in a min

Cosmology, Theology

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Pack Behavior

/ Evolution /

Streaming movies I’m lately coming to like Martin Clunes more and more. He’s a British presenter for nature shows. Family type stuff, he’s no David Attenborough, no Jacques Cousteau, but his films are companionable: and he favors animals that we favor: horses, dogs. Good, there’s a warm place for him in the TV world. In a show on dogs he visits a guy who lives with a wolf pack as one of the wolves. The pack is a social hierarchy, he’s fit himself into it. He’s not the alpha male, he not one of the famlaes, he’s not the beta male; he’s the enforcer. At feeding time nerves are raw, the big males are ready to fight at the drop of a hat, but before the hat can actually drop our pack-man dives head first into the melee, defusing things, for a moment, then he has to dive again.

I’m reminded of an incident in the 1960s with my German Shepherd dog, Angus. I was walking Angus in Riverside Park, Oh, my god, here comes that incredible blond with the huge shepherd. She’s got an ass like a Maillol sculpture. Her dog is huge; Angus is slight as German Shepherds go. Her big male is going to start fights and win them quickly; Angus will cower, whimper, run away. I walk Angus off the leash, this girl has her monster on the leash. I trust Angus to have the sense to steer clear of her Golith, but I want to get a gander at this girl’s rump, the more so as the slope where I’m walking is steep, her gluteus will be flexing to the max.

No, I shaved it too close, Angus has wandered into danger, her dog attacks. Instandly Angus is on his back, offering his belly, his throat in surrunder, the girl is yanking at her champion’s leash, and I, if I’d have any brains at all, should have stayed clear of it, trusted Angus to survive it somehow, or not, but it’s his feebleness that’s being exposed, not mine. But no, without thinking, idiot pk dives into the mix tyring to cover Angus’s throat, exactly where this dog is chomping it. Too late I realize the danger I’m in. But it’s over!

Her dog has found a human hand under this teeth. His jaws, furious to tear Angus, chomped me, and some kind of brakes came on. The bite wouldn’t have bothered a butterfly. Or so I thought: her dog has bitten my wrist watch with its Spidel band in half! Cheap watch, bitten in half!

The girl is “I’m so sorry”ing. I grumble and grunt, surrepticiosly still looking.

So: what did her dog imagine my position was in her dog’s imagined pack? Clearly I was magical. And clearly I knew it! Instinctively! or I wouldn’t have been anywhere near those jaws no matter how weak and cowardly my darling dog was.

By the way, let me here tell a different story from a decade after this one: I was walking Angus on Riverside Drive, not in Riverside Park, up from Riverside Park, after midnight. I n oticed two guys lounging together. One black, one Iriental. I saw them lean together, whisper, separate. I walked past them. Angus as always was off the leash, out of sight, way south. I was say around 100th St, Angus could have been as far south as 95th St. I had always thouyght that if a mugger came along I would have to protect Angus, not the other way around. And we’d lived happily together for say a couple of decades by then. Angus was still slight but now he was also all but blind, having been maced by a cop in Maine, 1968. Sill us, we could have rinsed his poor eyes if we’d known. Hilary didn’t know, I wasn’t there, and didn’t think of it when I was.

so: here we are. I’m walking along, a short braided leash, shredded from perpetual tugs of war with Angus dangles from my hand: but did it look like a weapon? No, something from S&M maybe. Anyway, I see the guys, the guys see me. I know this and that trick to try to avoid them, but this night for some reason, I don’t employ them. I walk deliberately right into these guys’ trap: if indeed they are muggers. They seemed to be.

My friend Larry from 1957 or 58, the Jew from Texas who liked to kill muggers with a switchblade, told me that if a guy who might be a muggers asks for a match, if you have a match, if you want to give him the match, throw the pack at him, say, Keep them. Do not let him get close to you to return the matches. Do not let him grab you.

I do. I let the guy tak the matches from my hand. When he takes hold of the matches, I smile at him and don’t let go, resisting his taking them. Oh, is that what I’m doing: acting crazy, scaring him. We’re both holding the matches, this is the Chinese guy, the black guy is lurking in shadows a couple of hundred feet away. Suddenly, terrifyingly between us, there’s a tornado of snarls, a whirlwind of canine aggression. Angus has this Chinese guy by the pants leg. The guy lets go of the matches. Angus backs the guy against a tree. Angus is slavering, his teeth, his lips, all foamed over. Off to my SE I see the black guy backing away, exiting the sceen.

“Hey, Mister,” pleads the Chinese guy, “call your dog off.”
I’ve never stopped smiling at him.

“Are you kidding?”

I walk on. Angus holds the guy against the tree. When I get a good number of feet away I whistle: “OK, Angus.” angus stops frothing, stops chomping. Angus lifts his leg agaist the guy, pees, and then potters away, totally ignoring his victim of the previous minute.

It was as smooth, and as comic, as if we’d rehearsed it. But we hadn’t. That’s the only such situation we ever encountered.
Or, I’m wrong, and Angus silently took care of them.

Angus was so smart. I think he understood French and German too.

2016 08 23 More coming, I so loved Clunes’ chapter on African wild dogs: pack behavior of a kind and degree we are unacquainted with!

Evolution

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Cuckoo Internet

Recreating (and advancing) pk’s censored domains: Macroinformation.org & Knatz.com / Teaching / Society / NoHier / DDD / Modules / “Rants” /

The internet I offered starting in 1970 could have saved us. It, had it been properly born, was the good internet: an ideal of data storage and communications. The internet we bought instead, is egregious: a substituted nestling, an example of nest parasitism from a kleptocracy crazier than any real cuckoo.

I already have a few illustrations scattered around here. I’ll repeat those and add others so that one comprehensive argument is in one place. For this moment though I’m going to say only one thing:
Every important bit of public domain text should have been hyper-published before a single graphic was added.
In the same vein, everyone should have had data reliably at sixty-four baud before anyone had data and one-twenty-eight. Everyone’s first request should have been satisfied before anyone could make a second.

Every graphic acknowledged to be significant should have been hyper-mounted before a single image of my-dog, or my-parrot, my-girl, or my-navel went on-line. We had the amazing chance to repeat Caxton’s privilege in deciding what got published first. I think Caxton made great choices. What did we do? The first ten things up should have been somebody’s idea of the ten greatest books, or at least chapters or pages. Then the hundred greatest. Then the thousand greatest. … Videos of the ten best movies ever made (according to anyone who’s ever made such a list) should have been published and released before any teen slash movie (not so nominated) got taped.

Please understand: I do not believe in coercion. I am not saying anyone should be forced to do these things or prevented by force from violating this or that principle. I’m saying this is the behavior I recommend. (And if I can’t have it, I pray for a God who’d get me the hell out of here.)

The Bible, Shakespeare, DW Griffith … classics should get coded first. A good concordance to the Bible should precede the public’s privilege in knowing the inventory of the local WalMart. If the Bible is important, then a good concordance to the Koran should also precede any current news from Reuters. If on the other hand, news is more important than myth, then all news should be told before any myth can be recounted. The poorest kid in Bangladesh should have right of way over the richest man in Palm Springs to get at those classics.

People who send junk mail disguised as personal mail should develop boils, fall on the ground, and have their bowels gush out. I admit that the distinction is not always easy. Steven King may regard some fan’s frantic attempts to gain his attention as a kind of junk mail. Still, that’s different from the obvious spam we’re all too familiar with.

And two: I gave the public a chance to pay for it voluntarily. Let the society be its own philanthropist. No taxes were involved. A truly voluntary bond, as it were.

Three: not to be underestimated: With FIX, few members of the public would have had to learn programming or computer operation. The FIX / FLEX staff would have had to have some competence at data storage and retrieval; but not the users of the service. You donations were to have paid for the software development, the time sharing on the main frame … We would have had good spreadsheet software, good relational data bases … years before Bill Gates first thought of Basic. By 1971 I had several proved programming geniuses — people who wrote FORTRAN — ready and willing to write great stuff: had I been able to pay them a pittance. They would have loved to work for FIX for a tenth what IBM had paid them (and they felt cheated blind by IBM!)

Note: it was a principle at FLEX that no one would earn more than a lower middle class salary. I projected $15,000 a year for myself and my family: no more. In 1970 that salary was extremely modest for one kept out of the marketplace till his thirties. And no FLEX employee would ever earn more than me. We should all agree to be … just well off; not rich. There’s something obscene about riches. What Christian could possibly admit to it? Every Christian should have transparent closets to prove that he’s not hoarding a second coat he should have given away.

2002 01 05 Last night I’m at my.yahoo.com. I link to this story and that: basketball this and golf that. I finally follow a long ignored link to How Golf Clubs work at a site called How Stuff Works. The articles were long on the labeling of parts and very short on engineering and physics. Meantime, there was an ad with a girl in a bathing suit to the right of every page of the articles.
The public missed its chance to keep TV from advertising. It was never offered a chance. The government sold or gave away the public’s rights without the public ever having learned that it had any rights (therefore, it didn’t). But the internet became ad-ridden in the face of the public having been offered FIX! If I and my associates had been able to develop FIX / FLEX as designed, everyone would have gotten an ad; none of the ads would have blinking lights or be able to elbow any other ad aside. Browsers would seek the ads, not have them shoved in their face.
The first newspapers in the 18th-Century had no ads. Now every literate moron reads his “news” surrounded by refrigerators and cigarettes: thinking nothing of it. What would you think if you and your wife got into bed for a little hug, a little sleep, and some whore popped up between you to tell you how much better it would be down at the tavern?
Reminds me of a joke.

The priest says mass: very much as usual. Midway, he notices some funny little foreign guy in the congregation with curly sideburns and a yarmulke. Later, counting the take, he’s astonished to find a $1,000 bill dumped on the pile from the collection plates.
Next week the priest is saying mass. He notices the same funny foreigner. Sure enough, he later finds another $1,000 bill in the collection.
The third week he’s prepared. The church staff will be on alert. Catch a gander of the funny foreigner. Watch closely during the collection. Does he contribute? What does he put in? Is it the grand?
During mass the priest notices the now familiar stranger. He catches the hi-sign from the staff: Yep, the guy laid a grand in the plate. After the service the priest makes like a minister and heads for the exit, catch the congregation on the way out. He accosts and welcomes the stranger.
Hello, welcome to our church, to our celebration of our immortality through the sacrifice of Jesus Christ, our Lord. Etc., etc. The priest bends over backwards to say that the guy is welcome, that if he’d like instruction in the faith, it’s available, that getting baptized … blah blah … and makes sure to emphasize the main point: You’re welcome without any money, but we sure appreciate generosity.
The guy says Sure, it’s just a little something. Think nothing of it.
With the priest now relaxed, semi-comfortable with the guy, the priest asks what he can do for him, what he likes about the Roman Catholic service, etc.
I like all of it, the guy answers, One thing in particular: you know that part where you say,
And give us this day our daily bread?

Yes, yes, yes, the priest is so eager:
Well, that grand could be guaranteed weekly, could be more, could be more than double … if you could just add Levy’s.

(There are “Jewish” jokes told by Jews and other “Jewish” jokes told against Jews by non-Jews. (And then there are anti-Jewish jokes told by Jews to non-Jews, jockeying for favor.) It’s long seemed clear to me that the best of the Jewish jokes told by Jews to Jews come from the Jews: and I’m lucky enough to have heard a bunch. Who can be sure with anonymous stuff, but I believe that the Jews author the best satires about being commercially “practical” … I’m fairly sure it was David Levy who told me the above joke back in 1956 or 1957. Anyway, notice: the Jews are the least of what’s satirized in it.

Deschool Menu

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Miss Memory

/ Stories … Old /

We all have memories. Old people are famous for dwelling in them. All people are notorious for nudging memories in directions that somehow salve the ego. Recently I shared a baseball memory with my beloved Jan, herself a trove of baseball iconery ; today I see that the memory is impossible. First let me tell the memory, then probe it for possibilty:

Once upon a time my fellow midnight dog walkers agreed to car pool for a Mets game: Shea Stadium. We chose a night with a bonus game: a Mets versus Dogers wives‘ game! Good. There we are, taking our seats. The wives are all attractive, all in somekind of shape, some are amazing, the most amazing of all being Mrs. Darryl Strawberry. The girls play like girls, but a bit better; Mrs. Strawberry in contrast, long as a stick, steps up to the plate, waggles, clocks a long one, deep into the outfield: and she gallops unimpeded around the bases.

That’s all. That’s the story. Darryl Strawberry was lanky, stunning: so was his missus. Jan herself tells stories about her late husband’s father’s friendship with Babe Ruth: they’d golf, fish … And her daughter is a big Cardinals fan. Baseball, and tennis, and lots of sports come easily to Jan’s lips and ears.

So what’s wrong? This morning, like many another morning, I’m browsing around in wikipedia, and I see that Darryl Strawberry didn’t appear at Shea Stadium until the 1980s. So? My trip to Shea with the dog walkers had to have been in the 1970s, probably around 1976. I’ve been to Shea Stadium more than twice, but never since the 1970s. So what am I remembering?

Yesterday I was having an email-series of a conversation with my son bk about punk music. He wanted to remember a story from his early teen years where he recommended that I discover some punk band or another. I apparently showed no interest, showed resistance. bk chided me for being closed. I answered that we all have to be closed for some things. There are more great things in the world than we can possibly keep up with: don’t try: relish what you can; you can’t afford the rest.
bk characterized this a “rational ignorance”. Yes. Good.

But bk wrote last evening that the band he wanted to tout didn’t exist in his early teen years: so what was he remembering? He’s not old, he’s just getting toward old.

Sickening Follow Up
2016 08 23 Today’s sports news says that Darryl Strawberry is trying to help Doc Gooden kick a cocaine habit. It says that Strawberry himself had had the same problem. Ugh. But it’s good to remember both of those great players.

Stories by Theme by Age
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