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Wate Night Wamblings - Volume 1:

  • Today (well, technically yesterday), I got my oil changed at Jiffy Lube (don't bother sending me messages bitching about either Jiffy Lube or me doing it myself. I can do it myself, ahhright, I'm just short on time so chill). It was a typical Jiffy Lube experience except for one thing. The strangest disclaimer sign that I have ever seen was on the Coca Cola machine in the customer lounge area. It said:

    Jiffy Lube is not responsible for any indiscretions that the Coke machine may cause.
    Thank You - The Management

    Excuse me. What? I did a double take. Indiscretions? Huh? Caused by a Coke machine? What sort of indiscretions do Coke machines cause? Either whomever wrote that sign doens't know the meaning of the word "indiscretion" or somebody acted rather rather indiscretely after purchasing a Coke product from their machine and tried to blame Jiffy Lube for carelessly having a soda machine that causes them to act that way.

  • It was my birthday on June 20th. I'm 29. A year from the big three-oh. It seems like I just graduated high school and started college a short time ago and now here I am married, have a 9-5 job, have a son, live in suburbia, and I'm approaching thirty. When the hell did this happen? Oh yeah and I'm getting gray hair, too.

  • Heard about the big hullaballoo in St. Louis Friday afternoon? You might have, it made national news. A place called Praxair blew sky high and I'm not even kidding. It was in downtown near Lafayette Square. It was a place the stored and sold tanks of various gases in various states including acetylene, oxygen, nitrogen, helium, and propane. BOOM! I work in downtown St. Louis as well but I'm glad I wasn't near there. Tanks of oxygen were flying out of that place like missiles, careening into nearby cars and buildings and creating secondary fires. That was pretty amazing, but you know the most amazing thing? Not a single person was injured. Not even a scratch! On anybody!. All seventy plant employees were accounted for. Somebody practiced their safety evacuation drills! No innocent bystanders had any parts of their bodies turned into pudding by flying oxygen tanks. The only casualties were some poor unsuspecting parked cars. Freakin amazing. More amazing than the five-story fireballs shooting above the St. Louis skyline.

  • Heat may have been a factor that caused the fire that started the explosions (something ignited some propane while they were filling a tank with it). Christ it's been hot around here! We've been nearing 100 degrees every day. And it's still June! July and August are usually much hotter in Missouri. This does not bode well.

I tried to think of more stuff to wamble about, but I think I'm out. I'm really tired and have to get back to bed (I fell asleep with my contacts in and had to get up to take them out, which hurt slightly, by the way, and I decided to do this daylog I had planned on before going back to bed). So anyway, night-night noderpeoples.

Oh yeah, and since it is late at night, I am not responsible for any typos in this node, or any indiscretions it may have caused.

Imperial Blog 26 Harvest 4703

Compare the role of the Emperor as portrayed in the real world currently, in the cinematic comic, and the best Western and Eastern classical traditions.

With their basis in vulgar materialism, the contemporary social forms of this world find it impossible to sustain true leaders as opposed to rulers and demagogues although the distinction is clear. A ruler seeks power over others and invariably represents the interests of the powerful, pandering to the lowest and most backward elements of society. This sort of power is invariably based on the ability to do violence of one sort or another. The antithesis of true leadership, this sort is typified by the ruling elites of the corporate and political class today.
Palpatine: The power of the dark side is boundless while that of the light side is finite.
Anakin: Why is that?
Palpatine: The strength of the light Jedi is limited by his or her own personal skill. Thus, their power is bound by their own personal limits and failings. But the power of a dark Jedi is not dependent on his or her own individual skill. Instead, the greater the dark Jedi's hatred, anger and impatience the greater the dark Jedi's power. The dark side feeds on anger and hate. The more anger and hate you can harness, the more powerful you can become. The best light Jedi is no match for even the most novice of dark Jedi . . .
While the above exchange, rumoured several years before production actually began, never took place in the actual Episode III, it aptly characterises the distinction between the leadership of a Bush, Chirac, or Putin and that of a Ghandi, King, or Mandela.

Even this however does the latter day panderers more credit than they deserve. If anything a figure like Bush the Lesser comes across as a clown Sith, a open and common target of ridicule who nonetheless continues to rule and mislead.

A true leader is both a teacher and co-learner with those lead. She will be fallible and at times unsure but never a panderer or demagogue.
The Zoo Hypothesis/Prime Directive concepts carry this forward to a universal context. They express an implicit faith in ethical progress and cut through speculations, e.g. those based on game theory, about contact from Superior/Supreme beings/beings.

They are natural extrapolations from the experience of the relation of more and less advanced cultures as these have evolved and are evolving in hunan history.

They also hint at the immanent formulation of religious experience based on reason.
Finally, let's be clear about the nature/role of the Da Xue Emperor. The opponent that he has conquered and over whom he has become Imperator is himself. The luxury and wealth that he enjoys is superior understanding and a well-founded existence. Whether or not this is realized as a social form is not up to him.

¹ e.g. Superior Beings: If They Exist, How Would We Know? Steven J. Brams. Springer Verlag, 1983.

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