War and Aggression are Natural

  There has never been a time in the History of Humankind, when Aggression and War have not been the Natural state of the World.

 When the first hominids learned to walk upright, greed, attack and defense, were keys to survival. At first, Clans and Tribal units formed, for a simple strength in numbers tactic. Leaders were probably accepted, either because of their physical powers, and their ability to overcome others, or their hunting and gathering skills.

  As agricultural, and communal survival strategies developed, there was, almost from the outset, two types of leaders…powerful militarists able to defend their positions and their communities, the first city-state kingdoms…and the Shamanistic leader, able to watch the stars, predict planting seasons, and rule from behind the thrones.
 There were also two types of followers…those happy to accept any and all rules for their own prosperity gains, and those that followed because they had little other choice.

The following millennia have seen little improvement upon these basic human synergies.

  Many philosophies have arisen in the course of human events, from Ancient Greece, to Medieval Feudalism, through Enlightenment, Democracy, Manifest Destiny, the Fourth Reich, and today, Corporate Globalism.

 Power is an ever present fact. Power is amassed, dispersed, spent, and fought over. The Elitist believes this to be the only reasonable pursuit…the great masses cannot understand by themselves.

 Utopians believe this Power can be used to uplift all of humanity, but most have morphed into little more than behavioral modifists, or cultist leaders.

  Which, all too quickly, brings me to a point?  Religion and Power have ALWAYS driven the human condition.

  From a religious perspective, the “Rapture” may be some peoples way of solving and reconciling the human conundrum…for others it may be Taoism, Sikhism, Paganism, or Hebraic.  But simply put, all religions seek to control, modify, or define people.

  From a political perspective, whether an elite royalist, or secular democrat, or power swallowing cultist, it is the strong that rule, and set the future for all followers.

  Power, in either case, is not wrested easily from those in control. Historically, it has always been through Arms, natural disaster, or benign neglect.
  Democracy was to have alleviated this more banal, and troublesome pattern. And yet, we must struggle each day for its survival.

Fight or perish. Permanence is not natural.

-“A republic, madam, if you can keep it”

You Mean Lisa?

In the Simpsons’ episode “Viva Ned Flanders”, Ned watches Homer cycle through one of his typically frontal-lobe challenged days, which leads to this exchange:

Ned: How do you do it, Homer? How do you silence that little voice that says “think”?
Homer: You mean Lisa?
Ned: No, I mean common sense!

It’s instructive dialog for Democrats these days. There is a growing consensus that those on the Blue end of the spectrum have lost their groove, and the search for it is on: left, right, up, down. Take your pick.

Some thoughts about the Frog

Well, we’ve had a lot of suggestions on naming the Frog. And we need to make some progress here, people.

So, I went through and picked out twenty names that either got a lot of support, or just struck me as damn funny.

We’ll whittle these down to 10, and then we’ll have a poll.

Defend your choices.

Names are below the fold (in no particular order):

The Right to Vote "Shall Not be Denied or Abridged"

The story of a small administrative error in Boston offers a window into how injustices can be obscured, downplayed, even denied.  It plays into the voter intimidation scandal that has surfaced in the 18th Suffolk District in Massachusetts, which just held a remarkable Democratic primary for state representative.

It all started a week or so ago when Boston Herald columnist Howie Carr, sounded the alarm that BU students might help elect openly gay, and pro-marriage equality candidate Tim Schofield in the Democratic primary for an open seat for state representative. Carr wrote: [I]f I were one of the other two major candidates, I’d be plotting a dirty trick for this weekend.”

Drought Crisis in the Northwest: Part 1

Snarky Seattle KOMO TV commentator Ken Schram snipes:

First: To all the people who’ve sent me e-mails ragging on Governor Gregoire for her remarks about the drought.

She was telling people how we’d all have to conserve; take shorter showers; flush toilets less and “…brush only every other tooth.”

For all of you who took the Governor seriously: You have the IQ of an Altoid.

Please, do not have children.

We face a frightening summer of fire and dust and dying animals in the Northwest:

“Barring a miracle,” the Corvallis [OR] Gazette-Times editorializes, “it looks as though the Northwest could be facing a drought the likes of which have not been seen since the days of the Dust Bowl.”

Worse yet, we have a worldwide drought crisis. For example, in Thailand’s province of Loei, elephants “are descending from their mountain homes to raid villages for food, as the north-eastern province becomes firmly gripped by drought.”

And so the story goes on, around and around the globe, which we’ll partly traverse in this diary.