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Some Short Takes from Moi

(If anyone GAF)

  1. Give Ukraine the planes, anti-aircraft equipment, drones, etc for them to create a “no fly zone”. We’re giving them other equipment to wage war and everyone knows that air supremacy is invaluable. (Ask Danaerys Stormborn and Winston Churchill). If we really, truly believe that Ukraine is a sovereign nation, then it has the right to defend its sovereign skies. This is conventional warfare. If putin is going to use a nuke or chemical weapons, he doesn’t need a reason. He’ll just do it. He wants to use the threat of these WMD to paralyze NATO into inaction. So, might as well give Ukraine the means to adequately defend itself. We’ve already guaranteed that if Putin uses some unconventional warfare, we will retaliate in kind. Ok. Get on with it then.
  2. I wouldn’t care which SC justice was protecting his/her spouse from the 1/6 Committee scrutiny, I would have to demand his/her resignation. No, don’t tell me Clarence Thomas won’t or that the right will have a hissy fit or that their scream machine is gearing up for all “Liberals are baby eaters and totally unfair for asking one of our guys to do the right thing or avoid a conflict of interest”. He’s not a popular justice. Mostly, he’s silent and doesn’t write opinions. John Roberts is probably livid right now because the way the federalists remain effective is by not doing the sh}% Thomas did. And the balance of the SC won’t change even if he leaves. So, I’m sorry, he’s got to go. No, No, don’t try that “but whatabout Hunter Biden??” BS. Hunter Biden looks like a Saint compared to the wife of a Supreme Court justice who conspired with a WH chief of staff who tried to overturn an election.
  3. Today is Tolkien Reading Day. March 25 is selected to commemorate the day Sauron fell. Spoiler alert – this is the relevant scene:

Sauron was a servant of the big baddy, Morgoth. You might not know about Morgoth unless you are also a Tolkien addict who read the Silmarillion. Morgoth, first known as Melkor, was the greatest of the Valar who created Arda, the place where Middle Earth is located.

Morgoth wanted to have the same power of creation as Iluvatar or God. But Iluvatar was the only source who could create beings with their own free will. Morgoth could only create creatures who submitted to his will. After Morgoth was captured and his servant Sauron was left in charge, the same restriction applied to anything he created or corrupted. They could only submit to his will, they had no ability to free themselves. When the ring was destroyed and dark tower fell, the orcs and trolls and Nazgûl also fell. The will of Sauron was gone so they were also destroyed or ran mindless and without direction and were ultimately defeated.

Tolkien famously said that he didn’t write allegories. I think he didn’t write the kind of stories that CS Lewis wrote where the characters and stories were clearly Christian in nature and represented Christ and resurrection etc. That was too unsubtle for Tolkien. His world is rich and deep and consistent. In the fall of Morgoth and Sauron, we see his opinion on authoritarian regimes that mindlessly follow a unitary executive whose notions of governance mean that there is no free will. Mordor is a dead, dreary place, reeking with poison, violence and despair. When you are in charge and no one can question your authority, you don’t have to answer to anyone. “The lion does not concern himself with the opinion of the sheep”.

In a dog eat dog world where there is no rule of law, a “magic ring” makes the ruler unaccountable for his actions. He doesn’t have to concern himself with the well-being or prosperity of his followers.

It’s only by forming a fellowship of allies that we have the strength to defeat this master. Our unity is his downfall.

Tolkien wrote his stories during the world wars and saw what authoritarians could do to the world. He knew that we coexist with evil and our greatest triumph comes from resisting temptation, not from eliminating it. His stories remain relevant up until the present day. That’s why they are classics.

“If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world.” — JRR Tolkien

4.) Just in time, the dark tower is falling:

Russia signals scaled-back war aims as Ukrainians advance near Kyiv

Let’s go hunt some orcs.


11 Responses

  1. The sanctions must be starting to bite Putin in the @$$.

    I heard today he had to lay off three Republican Senators. 😈

  2. Weekly off-topic reminder:

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    Both shows can be found at http://arkansasrocks.com/

    If you can’t catch Beaker Street live, MP3 files are available soon afterward at https://beakerstreetsetlists.com/

  3. I haven’t read the Tolkien yet, but I imagine that a connection could be made to something in his writings and what we have with people like Thomas, who believes that he is absolutely impervious to anyone stopping him from violating his oath, and conspiring with his wife and the tyrant’s chief of staff to overturn a democratic election. When Ginny Thomas said that she had “discussed it with her best friend,” do you think she meant some woman she has lunch with? I don’t. That was code for someone, most likely Clarence Thomas.

    So far, nothing has happened to any of these people, not Gaetz Gohmert, Greene, or Trump or Manafort or Stone. Well the latter two got jail time, but were pardoned by the tyrant. So Thomas, who was wedged into his position by specific people, played the race card at his hearing, and who has never had any interest in law as such, just the power and the prestige, figures he is a made man, in mob parlance. Republicans packed the court, and then scream that the Democrats must be stopped from packing the court. If McConnell were Majority Leader, I doubt that Jackson would have gotten a hearing. They’re shooting for 9-0 forever, maybe one token liberal to mock. I think that the Democrats should demand that Thomas be taken off the court. Of course they can’t accomplish it, but how about our side being the one which has a few emotional issues to rally the voters? The Supreme Court is intended by Republicans to be a permanent rubber stamp for their radical right state legislatures. Unless this is pointed out every day, the average voter will not see it. That the Court might be much more unpopular in polls, is of no concern to the Republicans, and Roberts will go along, or they’ll push him out like Anthony Kennedy, and stick a younger person in.

    • This time, let’s try to not roll over.

    • Re: Tolkien.
      If you’ve avoided reading him because you thought it is all dungeons and dragons, you don’t know what you’ve missed. The thing about Tolkien is that his books have so many layers. As you get older, you get to peel back layers and each one is different from the one on top. So it starts with an adventure, then you find little nuggets of Anglo Saxon, Scandinavian and medieval literature, then you get to the philosophical stuff with a dash of autobiography thrown in for versimilitude, then you get to the theology/cosmology elemental stuff. Scattered through that is his love of trees and dislike of too much modernity. He’s way ahead of everyone on the environment. Plus, his essay On Fairy Stories has a solid undercurrent of jungian psychology. You pick up something new with every rereading that you never noticed before but seems to come along at the right time and maturity level.I think that’s why those of us who discovered Tolkien when we were young read his works over and over again. And every new book from his vast collection of half finished tales and buried legends makes us drool when it comes out. Can’t get enough.

      • An appealing case, so I will certainly start one of Tolkien’s books in the next month or so, and look for what is beneath the fantasy aspects. Oh, I promised to read “A Distant Mirror,” too, so I will order it this weekend, and read that first. I don’t forget things, it just sometimes takes me a while to get to them.

        • I’m flattered you would actually read any of my recommendations William but choose the books you like.
          There won’t be a quiz later. 😉

  4. I am with you RD. LOTR is a wonderful adventure and one of its many deeper meanings is its meditation on the temptation of absolute power.

    Back in February when Putin was seemingly on the fence as to whether to invade Ukraine, I kept thinking about the scene in “The Two Towers” when Smeagol (the “good” side of Gollum) debated his evil “Gollum” side about whether to try to take the Ring from Frodo.

    First Gollum’s hand would reach for the Ring and say, “We wants it!” Then there would be an objection, like, “There is two of them, they will kill us!” Then his hand would draw back, and reach yet again after his evil side disposed of the previous objection. Finally Gollum was all but decided to grab it then and there until he thought of how he might get the aid of the monster Shelob (China?!) — “Maybe She can help..”

    Putin ended his internal debate, if any, saying, “We wants it! We wants it!”

    As to the value of the Ukraine: historians like Timothy Snyder make what feels to me a convincing argument that Ukraine was Hitler’s true objective in WWII, he wanted the rich farmland there and the oilfields of the Caucasus. And that despite the bitter fighting in France, the European war was really about Hitler’s well documented desire to steal more “living space” for Germany in the East.

    Similarly, Putin now makes a nonsensical argument that Russia is not “complete” without Ukraine. While we can stretch a metaphor too far — Ukraine is not the Ring, control of Ukraine does not equal control of the world — it’s beyond tragic that Ukraine’s status as a resource rich borderland has resulted in so bloody and dark a history that repeats itself once more.

  5. 😈🤣

    The afterlife must be full of German military men wondering how they ever lost that war to that country.

    • To say nothing of a Corsican corporal.

      I believe General Winter had something to do with it.

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