commentary, philosophy, and outright rants

Archive for the ‘art’ Category

Quote updates 12/9

Bill Schneider:
“An Obama job approval rating of 79 percent — that’s the sort of rating you see when the public rallies around a leader after a national disaster. To many Americans, the Bush administration was a national disaster.”
http://http://www.cnn.com/2008/POLITICS/12/09/Obama.poll/index.html

Honorable William O. Douglas, U.S.S.C. (1898-1980):
“We must realize that today’s Establishment is the new George III. Whether it will continue to adhere to his tactics, we do not know. If it does, the redress, honored in tradition, is also revolution.”
http://www.oyez.org/justices/william_o_douglas/

Sandra Lee Dennis:
“We begin to resacralize sexuality by acknowledging its shadow side of destruction and death, the dark Eros whose importance we may yet grasp.”
http://www.infibeam.com/Books/info/Sandra-Lee-Dennis/Embrace-of-the-Daimon-The-Ecstatic-Promise/0892540567.html

Senator John McCain (R-AZ):
“Senator Obama and I have had and argued our differences, and he has prevailed. No doubt, many of those differences remain. These are difficult times for our country, and I pledge to him tonight that I will do all in my power to help him lead us through the many challenges we face. I urge all Americans who supported me to join not only in congratulating him, but offering our next president our good will and honest effort to find the necessary compromises to bridge our differences.”
http://mccain.senate.gov/public/

William Jefferson Clinton:
“We just had the biggest redistribution of income upwards in the last eight years since the 1920s, and we know how the 1920s ended.”
http://www.clintonlibrary.gov/

For the Fallen

Sometimes a poet, writing of one matter – in Laurence Binyon’s case, the English Expeditionary Force in the First World War – will write words so timeless that those parts not specifically tied to place or time re-echo through the ages whenever a like event occurs.

The second, fourth, sixth, and seventh verses of For the Fallen by Laurence Binyon, for this eve of 9/11:

Solemn the drums thrill; Death august and royal
Sings sorrow up into immortal spheres,
There is music in the midst of desolation
And a glory that shines upon our tears.

[…]

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor the years contemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them.

[…]

But where our desires are and our hopes profound,
Felt as a well-spring that is hidden from sight,
To the innermost heart of their own land they are known
As the stars are known to the Night;

As the stars that shall be bright when we are dust,
Moving in marches upon the heavenly plain;
As the stars that are starry in the time of our darkness,
To the end, to the end, they remain.

Waning Moon

From full she darkens, failing, fading
Remembers climb and zenith, her creation
Twained moons they brighten, building, waxing
Reflected trine light, still needs but one

Still yet she dims, should she not shun
A final journey of making new
If ‘twould be ‘complished, must now she run
And claim Creatrix days, hers now so few

The matrix closes dry as the dew
To leave the Twain to grow alone
“No!” she cries, “Not only two
“‘gain I will birth the flesh, the bone!”

Fervored glories not unbecoming she who as a Goddess
Passion’d pains forthgiving: another yet to bless.

The entirety of “The Defense of Fort M’Henry”

Poem, The Defense of Fort M'Henry, by Francis Scott Key

Netflix can’t maintain queues; can they be trusted with credit cards?

I received the following notice in my email today, from Netflix, a web-only movie rental company:

Important News Regarding Netflix Profiles

We wanted to let you know we will be eliminating Profiles, the feature that allowed you to set up separate DVD Queues under one account, effective September 1, 2008.

Each additional Profile Queue will be unavailable after September 1, 2008. Before then, we recommend you consolidate any of your Profile Queues to your main account Queue or print them out.

While it may be disappointing to see Profiles go away, this change will help us continue to improve the Netflix website for all our customers.

If you have any questions, please go to http://www.netflix.com/Help?p_faqid=3962 or call us anytime at 1 (888) 638-3549. We apologize for any inconvenience.

– The Netflix Team

This is my response:

(Also published as an open letter on my blog.)

Dear Netflix,

I wanted to let you know that if you go through with eliminating Profiles, the feature that allows me to set up separate DVD queues under one account, I will likely cancel my membership with you.

It is disappointing to see Profiles go away, and I don’t see how this will improve your website – or your business. I do know that if you can’t manage to hire web programmers to maintain a feature that’s worked successfully for so long, I really don’t see how I can trust your remaining web programmers to keep credit card and other information confidential.

If you have any real explanation other than shoddy programmers or being unable to pay enough to programmers to run a web-only business, please feel free to contact me.

Quote Updates 5/18

Horatio, Lord Nelson:
“I am acting not only without the orders of my commander-in-chief, but, in some measure, contrary to him…I am doing what is right and proper for the service of our king and country. Political courage, in an officer abroad, is as highly necessary as military courage.”
http://infomotions.com/etexts/gutenberg/dirs/9/4/947/947.htm

Gregory Norbert:
“When the time of our particular sunset comes our thing, our accomplishment won’t really matter a great deal. But the clarity and care with which we have loved others will speak with vitality of the great gift of life we have been for each other.”

Stan Rogers:
“…For we couldn’t leave her there, you see, to crumble into scale./She’d saved our lives so many times, living through the gale/And the laughing, drunken rats who left her to a sorry grave/They won’t be laughing in another day…/

“And you, to whom adversity has dealt the final blow/With smiling bastards lying to you everywhere you go/Turn to, and put out all your strength of arm and heart and brain/And like the Mary Ellen Carter, rise again

“Rise again, rise again – though your heart it be broken/And life about to end/No matter what you’ve lost, be it a home, a love, a friend./ Like the Mary Ellen Carter, rise again….”

http://www.stanrogers.net/

Kunal Ghosh:
“That communism is a crypto-religion in line with Judaism and Christianity (both are Abrahamic faiths of West Asian origin) has been alluded to by many great thinkers…Abrahamic religions, whenever they conquer a territory, convert the inhabitants and try to suppress their ancestral culture. Ancestral history becomes a prohibited subject. In Afghanistan and Pakistan pre-Islamic Hindu-Buddhist history is not permitted in schools. China is doing the same in Tibet.”
http://www.mainstreamweekly.net/auteur39.html

debauchette:
“I, and other women like me, object to the assertion that sex work is inherently degrading and that no woman pursues this work or experience by choice. Women do make these choices, and I’m among them. And I have no regrets. My perspective on Sawyer was just that – I was a woman who made a choice.

“This isn’t to say that degrading and dehumanizing sex work doesn’t exist, because it most certainly does. But it does a disservice to everyone when we fail to recognize the differences, the differences in power, autonomy, and freedom.”

http://debauchette.wordpress.com/

Daring to be painfully dorky

From GiggleSugar:

Comedic Gymnastics? Hells Yeah!

Paul Hunt, a renown gymnast and women’s coach, never took himself or his sport too seriously. He blended comedy with skill and his ever-present alter ego, Señora Pauletta, became a fan fave. Here she is, pretty in pink and pigtailed to boot, tackling the uneven bars. Her form is a little off, but she’s flipping funny for the win. Wait for the landing — it’s comedy gold!