I’m Scandinavian with a touch of English. As my Norwegian grandmother said, we don’t show what we’re feeling but we feel it deeply, both the hurts and the kindnesses. I am an introvert, I sit back and observe, blend into the background. I like my own company and have no problem doing things alone.
That’s not to say that I’m anti social, that I don’t like people or like to do things with people. Quite the opposite, I do enjoy doing things with people, I am social. It’s just that I don’t panic at being alone. To me, alone is okay.
I have been accused of having a “code of ethics” that NO one could possibly live up to and of being “unforgiving”. That maybe so. In this age where Ayn Rand is being held up as some one we should emulate, there is no question that my beliefs of social interaction are the exact opposite of this sociopath. Yes, truly, she was a sociopath, just watch the Dan Rather interview if you don’t believe me. I marvel at the cognitive dissonance of my Catholic friends singing her praises. Say WHAT???
I am a non theist, I do not believe in the man made gods that dominate this country. If you have to be told what your morality is, what your ethics are, how can you claim them as your own? If they do not come from with in you, but from outside you, how true are you likely to be to them? If they are not from with in you, it is ever so easy to “interpret” them in such a way as to do what ever you feel like doing including, kill, lie, bear false witness, the whole time saying that you believe in the 10 commandments as presented in the Old Testament. It’s all in the interpretation and for most people, some one else’s interpretation, you just have to find the one that allows you to do what ever the fuck you want to do.
“Well, we went back and re-intrepreted the bible in todays language and what it really says is that we shouldn’t kill those that agree with us. It’s okay to kill those that disagree with us.” ”Why no, you should not bear false witness agains your neighbor, but he’s not my neighbor.” It’s all in the interpretation. Christianity by Ayn Rands rules. Do what you want, only the weak and stupid are constrained by rules or morality.
So, yeah, my morality comes from with in me, it is mine. Either I believe it or I don’t, it’s mine, either I live by it or I don’t. As it turns out, I am not always successful in living by my own morality, but one of the tenets of my morality is that when I screw up, admit it and move on, trying to do better in the future. Yeah, easier said than done!
Forgiveness is a tough one. I do believe in forgiveness. In the truest sense of the word, it means to forget. That’s where I have trouble. The forgetting.
If some one hurts me, my armor goes up, I protect myself as best I can against further hurts. If they come to me and apologize, am I willing to accept that apology, to forgive them? That depends on the apology. I especially love the non-apology apology, you know the one - “well, if I hurt your feelings, I’m sorry.” Usually said with contempt dripping off it.
In other words, they did nothing wrong, get over it. No understanding of if or why you were hurt and not one bit of caring if or why you were hurt. This is Ayn Rands world, “I am right, you are wrong, your feelings don’t matter, now get over it and move on.” It’s true, I am rather unforgiving of that sort of apology.
Some times though, people actually make an attempt to understand how they hurt me and actually care. Their apology comes with out excuses and with out contempt dripping from it. I can accept that kind of apology, but here’s the rub, that doesn’t mean that my guard will suddenly drop, that I forget the hurt. I’m not trying to be unforgiving, I’m trying to protect myself. They have to re-earn my trust and this pisses some people off. I understand, I do. Still, the forgetting, I have trouble with it.
Many years ago my brother did some thing that hurt my grandparents greatly. A few years later my brother was talking with my grandmother and she said “I forgive you, but that doesn’t mean I have forgotten.” Some would suggest that she did not understand the word forgive.
I understand her point. It’s not score keeping. It’s protection from further hurt.
I was reading a post the other day where the person was upset about people of one political persuasion or the other calling the other side evil. Couldn’t tell from their moniker whether they were male or female. They were right, calling some one evil doesn’t exactly entice either side to attempt, even for a second, seeing the other guys point of view.
I don’t actually think every far right christian republican is evil. The problem is, when I see Dick Cheney or Donald Rumsfeld, I see EVIL. These are intelligent, calculating and powerful men that do not have one ounce of empathy for any one else. If killing 5,000 American soldiers and 100’s of thousands of innocent Iraqi and Afghan civilians will give them more money and power, then, why not? They are EVIL incarnate. Truly, I do believe that.
Then there are people like Justice Roberts, Scalia and oh, my god, don’t vomit, Thomas. I mean come on, how can you look at Justice Thomas or his wife and not just want to vomit??? These men aren’t stupid but don’t have the intelligence of the above. They aren’t quite as calculating or powerful either, but evil, maybe with a small e, none the less. They don’t quite see the whole picture, but they know what side their bread is buttered on, so to speak.
What about Gingerich, Palin, Bauchman. Dumb, just plain dumb. Well, dumb in that they know nothing about the world or reality but not so dumb in that they know how to manipulate people. Oh, my god, just imagine the damage they could do if they had an ounce of intelligence to go with that people power they have.
Ah, how about McCain. Just one sick angry dude. He is so fucking pissed that America didn’t want him as President that he can’t see straight. He will do any thing to strike back at those dumb fucking Americans that rejected him. Not to worry, that kind of anger eventually eats it’s possessor.
Okay, not making any friends here. I agree, calling them evil does not gain a thing, but, damn it, I think they are EVIL.
Well, then, what about the people here, in my community that listen to Rush and Glen and have Fox Faux news on 24 hours a day. Nah, I don’t see them as evil. They are pawns, not too bright, consistently vote against their own self interest then blame some one else. When I am foolish enough to point out their errors in logic or facts, they look at me with the same contempt that I feel for them.
I used to have a great deal of respect for some of these people. We helped one another, had bbq’s, laughed, had a good time. Then, some time toward the end of Bush’s first term, it’s as if some one spiked the Kool Aid. I don’t know, that’s when they started airing Rush Limbaugh on the local radio. Could just be coincidence, but that’s when every one turned political and angry and weirdly religious.
This weird religion where Jesus hates the poor and the sick and the afflicted because it’s all their fault that they are poor and sick. Well, I’m a non-theist any way, so doesn’t matter to me what their god or God believes, but some how, I don’t remember that particular Jesus from when I was growing up in the church.
You know though, I don’t have a whole lot more respect for Democratic politicians. What exactly do they believe in? I mean, it seems they sell their souls as quickly as any Republican. Obama sure as hell did. Well, I suspect his soul was sold long before he became president. A master at appearing one thing while really quite the opposite. I have no idea why the Republicans are against him, really.
You want evil, or should I say EVIL, what Obama is doing to Bradley Manning is EVIL. PERIOD. Obama may take this country to total destruction a bit slower than the Republicans, but he’s taking us there none the less.
Ah, you see, I even call those on “my side” EVIL. So, no, it doesn’t help to call them evil and/or stupid, but darn, THEY ARE.
I read an article today at Firedoglake about “The War on Thinking” (http://fdl.me/gXk6Ly ) and it all started to fall in place for me. As we watch the destruction of the infrastructure and educational system of the United States, I’ve always thought it rather short sighted. Surely those multinational corporations will pay a price in the long run.
I was born in 1950 and my youth was in a country that valued education above nearly every thing else. The people seemed to understand then, that corporations would always put the welfare of workers and customers second to profit, thus, in the interest of both workers and customers, those corporations needed to be “regulated”. The result as I saw it, was a country that raced to the lead in every category. A highly intelligent populace where corporations made plenty of money and the people shared in the wealth.
Then the Reagan revolution. I am sad to say, I bought it and voted for him. Well, in my defense, you have to admit, the democrats didn’t make a very convincing argument for or against any thing. In fact, I haven’t a clue what they believed in, if they believed in any thing at all.
The 80’s brought the start of a slow, systematic destruction of both our infrastructure and educational system. People like me, busy getting on with life didn’t notice until well into the 90’s.
Since then, I’ve been shaking my head, saying “but you are destroying the golden goose. Surely in the long run you destroy yourself???” Ah, but then today, I realized that the golden goose, the United States, is only 5% of the worlds population, a really small goose.
As the rest of the world races to catch up and surpass us, they tend to not put limits on corporations. So, those multinational corporations are able to rob the economy of the US by not being taxed, put it in their bank account, hire an educated workforce abroad at NO cost to them, putting even more in their coffers and not worry or care in the least that the US population will soon be dumber than dung (some evidence that’s already happened, a la Palin) and poorer than that church mouse we’ve heard about. That 95% out there, beyond our shores, will more than make up for any losses suffered through the destruction of the U.S. What’s a measly 5% when you can have the 95%?
So, maybe I was wrong, maybe it’s not short sighted. Not that I don’t see other problems coming their and our way, but, finally, I understand their twisted logic. It may still turn out to be short sighted, but not for the reasons that I thought.