Monthly Archives: November 2011

Confession Time

Confession #1: I’m in almost daily communication with the team of Toyota mechanical engineers who designed the 1991 Toyota 4-Runner and the Japanese Toyota assembly plant worker who tightened the starter-bolts on the one parked across the meadow jacked up and partly dissassembled.

Those men don’t need to have a command of the English language to be laughing and giving one another the high-five while saying:  “Hahaha you Yankee pig!  You’ll never get that starter off!   Hahahaha!  We nailed your young ass good!”

Although that bolt head is the ‘easy’ one, this American can’t get to it with any wrench yet invented for a straight-on shot.  The mechanical engineers made sure of that.  But the guy working in the assembly plant lacked sufficient confidence some can-do American wouldn’t come up with a way to put a wrench on it, so he torqued it down with a cheater-bar, thinks I. 

Trying to get it loose repeatedly already has the grim prospect looming that I’m going to round off that head.  If that happens I might as well take a cutting torch to the whole shebang and use it for a new chicken house.

The engineers did their job and the assembly-line worker did his.  Now where did I leave that right-angle cutter and 300 foot extension cord?

But they had a backup plan.  I’ve been talking about the easy one.  This one I can’t even get into a position to see, but I think that might be it, back where I have to stick the camera in to try to get a view of it.  I can’t think of a single way I’ll ever get a wrench anywhere near it.

Confession #2:  I am the stupidest person you’ll ever encounter writing a blog on the Internet.  The proof is enshrined here:  The Communist Toyota 4-Runner.  “But there it is.  Hot diggedy damn!”  “Easy!  Easy money!”  “Man, people pay good money to get to do a job as easy as this one’s going to be.”

*Old Jules

*Old enough to know better.

Rattus Rattus vs Foreigners – The Universal Soldier

This was written before I realized the rats are just a diversion and Chinese containerized cargo-boxes are the real invaders.

“Trouble!” says you.  “What trouble?”

“The Ruskies went home a decade ago,” You say.  “Berlin wall came down and no one even remembers it.  The Germans are all running around hugging one another worrying about mad cows and leaving everyone else alone.

“We kicked the holy bejesus out of Samdam Hoooosane and his royal guards,” you say, “And might do it again if he doesn’t behave,” you say, “And we’re all safe and sound here in the land of milk and honey…..Ain’t gonna war no more,” you say, “Except the occasional invasion of a minor third rate Middle Eastern or Balkan country,” you say…..”All safe and sound, swords into plowshares, all that.” 

And you really believe that, do you?

Well, if you believe that, you’d better prepare yourself for a shock down to your carefully manicured and polished toenails……’cause the real challenge is still out there, the real challenge is happening right there in your back yard even as we speak, in your attic, in the sewer under your squeaky clean porcelain commode;  in the trees behind your quiet complacent little hidey hole you’ve made for yourself to stick your soft American head into.

You kept your guard up all those years because one of the Marx brothers talked about lulling the West into a false sense of security, and of course he was right.  Of course he was.

Only the time-skid was slower than anticipated and all the Marx brothers died.

Yeah, Groucho and Harpo sleep with the fishes, but it’s still going on.

The fifth column is here, now, at work near you, near your home.

“Rats.” I say.

“Rats?” You say.

Yeah. Rattus Rattus, the good American rat, the roof rat, is the only real American who knows, and he ain’t saying much. 

Old Rattus Rattus suffers silently in his simple Christian American way; fighting quietly for his homeland with American know-how.  Sure, it sounds silly and pointy headed, Rattus Rattus, but that’s his damned name, same as yours is Homo Sexian or some such thing.

Rattus Rattus struggles without complaint for his tiny children, while slowly, the habitat and other lousy habits, recede every year.  You ought to know by the name; Rattus Norvegicus, the Norwegian rat, the dreaded wharf rat:  the foreign rat the communist pinko athiest moslem heathen yellowjapaneseinvader super rat of the future is bullying him back.

While you sleep there in your complacent soft pillowland, it’s going on outside and up in your attic, in the streets, the alleys, the sewerplants, the amber grainfields, the feedlots, the silos, Rattus Rattus battles for you against the silent invaders. Rattus Rattus draws his lines in the sand, digs his little burrows, fortifies, and retreats as the highly mechanized divisions of Norwegian rats advance, house by house, burrow by burrow……Every year the Rattus Rattus line moves inward a few miles, seven miles in along the whole perimeter.

Yeah.  There are bulges, enclaves of encirclement.  Enclaves of resistance, but Norvegicus takes no prisoners, spares no one.  And you sleep silently, peacefully while your own good American rats are diminished, you who gutsylike bomb the bejesus out of other commie pinko foreign middleastern terrorist muslim and Balkans, sleep while your own brother-rats in your own back yard die without your help.

And what do you think, you sleeping bastards, will happen when the final conquest is complete?  Do you think you will be left alone, when the last fighters have all fought on your behalf, when the silent armies of Rattus Rattus are all destroyed, all the food for ravens scattered on the battlefields of America?  Don’t bet on it.  The sound of scratching in the ceiling, inside the walls has barely begun.

Time to join the battle, fellow Americans, time to get out the cyanide, the 1080, the pellet guns and the mousetraps, time to stock up on cheese, and warfrin, and time to prepare for the big battle for America in the American way.  Time to begin the manufacture of tiny tanks, (maybe Tonka and some of those can help) and artillery pieces, and scatterguns and nervegas and miniaturized nuclear weapons…..time to join in the real battle for America here at home.

If you aren’t with us, you are against us, behind enemy lines, already under the areas controlled by the foreign devils, and you won’t be spared, unless you form an underground, a fifth column of your own…..

They’ve already got all the other countries, the other continents, and as has happened so often in history, America stands alone against them, a tiny host of good American rats, behind the scenes, fighting against all odds for you, to the end……

And that doesn’t even touch on the imported fire ants killing our domestic fireants, the imported Africanized bees killing our good American queen bees and selfishly taking over the hives, the Russian Thistles (tumbleweeds) cluttering up our prairies, the imported hares (jackrabbits), the English Sparrows (that battle’s already lost), the tamaracs (salt cedars stealing our precious water for their foreign interests),  and the imported fruitflies…….it’s all there, all in black and white, been written down, so it’s true …..a multi-pronged attack against all that’s good in America…..while you sleep…….

And now the foreign weathermen, the Canadians and Mexicans, are predicting our weather, keeping the good stuff for themselves……

Old Jules

 

 

Old Sol’s Moodiness and Being a Character In a Book

In case you’re one of those people who hasn’t been staring at the sun, here’s a brief update before I tell you about an interesting tidbit in my life:  Finding myself a character in a ‘memoir’ [actually a novel] written by my step-brother published as non-fiction.  But important things first:

From http://spaceweather.com/

Here he is November 28:

As you can see, the south pole stuff’s maintaining itself, still doing what it was doing when I last mentioned it.

Here’s today.

Still something going on down there, but the grandstanding is still north of the equator.

Strangeness

SINUOUS SUNSPOTS: A line of sunspots stretching across the sun’s northern hemisphere appears to be an independent sequence of dark cores. A telescope tuned to the red glow of solar hydrogen, however, reveals something different. The sunspots are connected by sinuous filaments of magnetism:

“These sunspots writhe and squirm energetically as they rotate away from us!” says John Nassr, who took the picture on Nov. 28th from his backyard observatory in Baguio, the Philippines.

The connections suggest an interesting possibility. While each sunspot individually poses little threat for strong solar flares, an instability in one could start a chain reaction involving all, leading to a widespread eruption. Readers with solar telescopes are encouraged to monitor developments.

I could write a lot about this but none of it would necessarily be true, so I’m doing my best not to have an opinion while keeping my foot in the door for afterward saying “I told you so,” if I can get by with it.

Okay.  Now for the main thrust of this post.  Before beginning the post I visited the Bobby Jack Nelson Forum on Amazon to see what was being said about him: http://tinyurl.com/7zj2la3

A while back I got an email on an old email address I rarely check anymore from a lady who wanted to discuss my step-brother, Bobby Jack Nelson.  She explained he’d offed himself in a nursing home in San Saba, Texas, and that she’d had a long-term relationship with him. 

But Bob had told her a lot of things she’d begun to think were lies.  She just wanted to bounce some of them off me because she knew he and I had associated considerably during the 1980s and early 1990s when he was writing Keepers – A Memoir. http://tinyurl.com/d82tcsk.

 To be honest the whole thing qualified as strange enough to keep life worth living.  Bob and I saw quite a bit of one another during those years, and I knew he was writing a novel about, among other things, his childhood in Portales, New Mexico.  I considered him a friend.

 But one day in the late-1990s [as soon as the novel had been accepted by a publishing house, I later discovered] while I was living in Socorro, New Mexico, I got a call from Bob.  He didn’t mention the novel, but he said he was going off to South America and wouldn’t be returning to the US, so I wouldn’t be hearing any more from him.

I got reports from various mutual acquaintances they’d seen him in Texas here and there, so I figured he just wanted to break off our association, which was puzzling, but okay by me.  Then I got a call from a Dallas reporter asking what I thought of the book, which I hadn’t been aware was published.

 Naturally, I bought and read a copy.  Suddenly it was clear to me why the reporter had called me, but also why Bob had suddenly taken a powder.  My first reaction to reading it would have been to trip up to that mountain town he was staying in while writing it and beat hell out of him.

I was honestly dumbfounded the man could bring himself to publish such a pack of lies as non-fiction.  But a person would have had to have been there, or remembered what he’d said back earlier had happened, to recognize there was barely a grain of truth in any of it.

Gradually I cooled down and just forgot about Bob until the lady contacted me to tell me he was dead, and how he’d died.

We exchanged a lot of emails over several months, and it was a journey of mutual discovery.  But the discoveries came in the form of Bob being an even worse liar than I’d have thought possible knowing already he was an accomplished liar.  And for her, not knowing he was a liar at all, I suppose it provided her some closure to find the man she loved, somewhat idolized, was in awe of, was not the person she’d believed him to be.

 Oddly enough, I think Bob tried to warn me a number of times about himself.  Several times he told me over the years that he was a liar, but I didn’t grasp the extent of what he was saying.  Other times he told me he wasn’t what I thought he was, and I shrugged that off, too.

But what came as a shock to me, first with the book, and later with what the lady told me, was that Bob absolutely despised me.  That, I’d have never guessed during the years I wasted pieces of my life associating with him in what seemed a mutually warm, friendly relationship.

Live and learn.

Old Jules

 

Songs of 20th Century Wars on Victimless Crimes

In the old days it was about taxes and heaping the payoff of the national debt on farmers who made whiskey out of their corn.  In 1790, it was considered an abomination and the farmers rebelled.  Abraham Washington or George Lincoln, I think it was, sent troops and eventually the Whiskey Rebellion became a footnote in history.

 

The song was ended but the melody lingered on.

Miss Marcy doesn’t quite fit the theme, but it involves whiskey stills, illicit sex, murder, dancing, adultery and other dirty stuff, and it’s a good song.  I’d be remiss leaving it out.

 

The Night Chicago Died isn’t precisely historically accurate, but it’s the only song comes to mind encapsulating what Prohibition led to:  Gangsters, cops and bystanders being gunned down, speakeasy whiskey nights, corruption, and a lot of richer cops, politicans and gangsters with nobody else better or worse for it except prison guards, more lawyers, judges and cops.  Sound familiar?

Even into the 1960s illegal whiskey still brought a smile and tacit approval from a population unaffected by the tiny wars still going on between back-woods whiskey-makers and ‘reveneurs’.  Not to be mistaken for Jack Daniels or Johnny Walker.  Nobody was getting killed over in the Jack Daniels plant.

 

Roger Miller’s classic’s just another example the general public attitude as opposed to the governmental enforcement apparatus tactics.

 

The US Government isn’t a fast learner.  They were already controlling and taxing whiskey.  They’d have saved more treasure than anyone can imagine it they’d taken that approach to dealing with cocaine.  The substance abuse happened, the machinery of justice cranked up to deal with it, the prisons filled, and the taxpayers paid, paid, paid without taking it off the streets.  Nor even out of the prisons.

Much the same song, different stanza for the poppy derivative family.

 

But whiskey and illicit drugs weren’t enough.  The only obvious place the government was successful collecting taxes across the board was on tobacco.

 

But even a lot of whiskey drinkers and cocaine snorters didn’t like smokers.  Gradually smokers were eased over there with prostitutes when it came to hammering them out of existence.

 

I’ve included a lot of different versions of this next song because we’ve needed a lot of jails for the people who get crosswise with moral superiority, barrels full of money, cops, politicians, judges and people who just like to know people they don’t agree with are in jail.

I’ve had to leave prostitutes and prisons for women full of them out of this because nobody cares enough about them to write a song.

 

 

 

Old Jules

Bullying – Bringing it all Back Home

If the power to intimidate is derived from a 'legitimate' source the term 'bully' is not applicable.

When I promised a summation of conclusions about bullying behavior based on ponderings and experiences described in those recent other posts, I didn’t grasp what I was setting myself up for.  Every direction I took in my thinking led to unsettling places I couldn’t trust without backing up and thinking it through from other directions.

If you’re new to this blog and haven’t read the earlier posts it’s possible you’ll find it easier to follow if you read them first.

More Future Me: Bass-ackwards Letter to the Past
A Bullying Commie Americauna
The Bullying Homestead Part 2
Half-Century of Male Evolution – Bullying Part 3
Stolen Horses and Baby Rattlers – The Anatomy of a Bully – Part 4

Okay, all that prefacing and cowardly side-step-waffling out-of-the-way, here’s what eventually I found myself inescapably glued to as a conclusion:

Bullying is so much a part of life on this planet we don’t even notice it.  It’s the glue holding every community together, every species, cross-species, inter-species.  It’s the determinant governing community behavior of every description.  We just don’t recognize it as bullying unless it falls into a class of activities we happen to disapprove in our matrix of human-cum-societal judgements.

That’s if ‘bullying’ is defined as a behavior, as opposed to being anchored to a larger concept:  the source from which the power being exerted is derived.  Building a concept bounded by ‘legitimacy’ and protocols does allow what we usually label bullying to be cut out of the herd and isolated in a pen of repudiation.  But by doing so we’d be forced to accept an equally unpalatable conclusion:

If the ‘bullying’ behavior subtracted from the bullying definition is legitimate because it derives power from approved sources of authority is an important piece of what holds things together, we’re stuck with it.  Lock, stock and banana-peel.  As an example, that 5th grade teacher of mine who liked to beat-hell out of me and other kids who weren’t in a ‘protected’ mode, wasn’t bullying us at all.  Reason being that his power derived from his position as a designated tool of the power of legitimate authority.

Similarly, all that Jew-baiting that went on in the 3rd Reich and elsewhere in the world.  The pervasive use of police forces to beat hell out of union strikers in the late 1800s and early 20th Century.  The iron fist used constantly after the Indian wars in the western US to keep tribal members on the REZ and out of the hair of the ‘legitimate’ citizenry far into the 20th Century.  The removal of the tribes east of the Mississippi, to designated places west of the Mississippi, even though doing so was a clear violation of previous treaties and agreements.  National Guardsmen shooting students at Kent State.  Policemen spraying little old ladies with mace.

Almost overnight, previously accepted non-bullying behavior/attitudes can become disgusting examples of bullying.

 

Sometimes focusing precisely on where the power resides becomes ambiguous.

 

 

Other times it’s not ambiguous in fact, but owns the tacit approval of de facto power.

 

Sometimes it’s bullying when it happens to the the group in question, but non-bullying when they’re doing it.

 

Sometimes it’s just a matter of being the wrong place at the right time.

 

And when the ‘legitimate’ source of power tacitly approves it, it’s not bullying.

 

So when a cop tasers a ten-year-old kid it’s actually business as usual.   It might eventually become ‘brutality’ or might be deemed excessive force, but it will never become ‘bullying’.

But it gets more complicated than that.  There’s a more subtle side of non-bullying we all see so frequently we take it for granted.   For instance, the entire pantheon of political rhetoric today is choreographed to  promote an atmosphere of something akin to bullying, character assassination, and denigration of the opposition.  But because it’s satisfying to the targeted body of listener/participants, it’s ‘legitimate’.

 

Bullies constantly strive to give the moral high ground to their attitudes and behavior.  Frequently, they succeed, and when they do those attitudes and behaviors cease to be bullying.  Probably the best example can be found in the most non-bullied segment of society filling the jails and prisons in the U.S.  Prostitutes.

They do openly and honestly what millions of women do every night with less honesty, more covertly, in singles bars and honkytonks.  They do it on streets surrounded by ‘legal’, ‘legitimate’ porn houses run by ‘legitimate’ businessmen and patronized by ‘legitimate’ consumers paying to observe the act of fornication.

But prostitutes enjoy the unique, traditional status of being bullied by pimps and johns, brutalized and extorted for sex by cops, exploited by lawyers, and of being the ‘product’ passing through the criminal justice system into the prisons-for-women industry.

They’ve never achieved the sanctity of the moral high-ground to get wives, girl-friends, and ‘respectable’ women objects of scorn and outlawed.  They’ve never found a reservoir of support to allow them to see those other classes of women outlawed and thrown into jails.

But they probably would if they could.

Inside they’re almost certainly bullies, too, like cops and schoolteachers, and like you and me.

Old Jules


 [youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?

Sunday Morning November 27, 2011 Musings

Old Sol’s finally recovering some dignity, getting some of the southern hemisphere melodrama behind him.  He’s spun around about 90 degrees and you can still see some of it lower right near the horizon.  But all-in-all he appears to be getting back to the business at hand. 

Nobody’s sure what the business at hand is, there’s a nice little solar breeze flowing out of that coronal-hole complex mid-south, leading us the way a hunter leads a goose he’s trying to shoot down.  It ought to reach us around the 29th of November.  Interesting stuff happening down at the south pole.  Remember where you heard it first.

I went up to turn out Kay’s chickens just before daybreak and kicked up a herd of about 20 wild turkeys, which we haven’t seen on this property in a goodly while.  But the country’s filled with hunters now, and there was some shooting not-too-far from the property lines yesterday.  They’re skittish critters and might have decided this side of the fences is safer, everything else being equal.

I swung into Kerrville yesterday to finally pick up that primer-bulb for the chainsaw and get chain and bar oil.  In the AutoZone store I noticed a couple of things I think might actually be worth buying as new tools after studying them a while.  One is a ratchet with 1/4 inch drive on one side and 3/8 inch drive on the other.  It has a comparatively short handle and a break just where the ratchet handle ends with a swivel on it to allow the handle to be bent allowing access to communistly personal space invaded places.

The other was a set of two box-end wrenches with ratcheting heads covering 8mm, 10mm, 12mm, 13mm, 14mm, 17mm, 18mm and 19mm.  If someone had told me yesterday morning I’d buy some new tools if I went to town they’d have lost intellectual standing in my eyes.

But looking at these I’m figuring I’m a pretty smart puppy.

Afterthought:  Jeanne found a discarded copy of Chancellorsville, by Edward J. Stackpole and sent it to me for my birthday.  I’m up to my elbows in it, finding it particularly interesting because the Stackpole generation of Civil War historians have such different perspectives about so many facets of what went on in that war.  He goes into loving detail about Hooker’s history, his behaviors throughout his career, his relationships with Lincoln and his various commanders and particularly with Burnside.  I’d never read that scandalous self-aggrandizing report he sent in about Antietam before now.  I’d also never encountered Grant’s “I consider Hooker a dangerous man,” appraisal of him. 

If I’d been driving my own truck I’d have had Chancellorsville propped up on the steering-wheel reading it on the drive to and from Kerrville, is how seductive I’m finding the tome.

Old Jules

A Few Decent Songs About Horses and Mules

My grandad used to sing these first two to me.  I think I probably knew both of them by heart before I began grammar school in 1949:

 

By the time Marty Robbins recorded this and started it playing on the radio I knew it well enough to make everyone in hearing distance wish it hadn’t played by singing along with it.

 

This Woody Guthrie version is probably my favorite.

 

When Jimmy Driftwood recorded this it had everyone in the country singing along when it played on the radio or jukebox.

 

Strange, strange song. I count it as one of the best CW songs of the 20th Century.

 

There was an old lady named Mrs. McCormick who had dementia living down the road from us.  If she was outdoors when I walked past she’d usually pay me a nickle to sing this to her.  That, and the fact she thought her husband left on the stagecoach last week and ought to be back soon provides a measure of how far gone she was.  Mrs. McCormick was the only person I ever encountered in almost 70 years wanted to hear me sing more than once.

Old Jules