This blog is going away

Unfortunately I will have to let this blog go since it’s become too expensive, largely thanks to GoDaddy changing things up and charging more year after year. They’re now asking for $261 for hosting and security fees (not including domain costs). Nah. Not worth it to me anymore. So, I’ve opted to not renew and will be closing the doors on this blogging project near the end of this month.

Might open a free blog elsewhere so as to move my transcribed book excerpts over there and not lose them. Otherwise, it’s all going the way of the dodo bird. Kinda sad about it, but everything’s become about money — and more and more money. If you can be squeezed, you likely will be. I’ve been doing business with GoDaddy in hosting various sites since around 2004 and never used to have any problems with their company, until the last couple of years. Don’t know what’s going on with them, but they’ve now lost my business too. Looking at reviews tonight I see that they’ve pissed off a whole lot of people lately. At this speed they won’t prosper for long.

So, I’ll still be on youtube from time to time (handles: Byenia and WaywardVlogging), as well as on twitter (handle: WaywardByenia). Haven’t been posting much on here this year anyway. Guess this further symbolizes the closing of a chapter in my life, as so much has this year. Have had one blog or another since back before 2006…and maybe I’ll create a new one, just a free one this time.

I honestly cannot wrap my mind around how it can cost well over $200/yr. to simply host this blog. Back in the day it was around $70/yr. And what’s up with requiring customers to pay for antivirus/security costs for hosting on a shared server? Never heard of that before. Plus there was the HTTPS costs that they also sold me on, explaining that my site would otherwise show a warning that most wouldn’t click through, fearing it may be infected.

With this also will go my separate business site, which consists of very simple (and comparably cheaper) HTML-based info pages. It’s been tied in with this hosting package once the price hike occurred, so it’s going down too. I’ll find a cheaper way to recreate it also.

So, that’s the latest news on my end. Can’t recommend that others do business with GoDaddy anymore. Something’s going wrong in their operation and it’s not the host it once was.

Tuesday morning journaling in November

Haven’t had much to say on here in a while. Feeling a cold coming on since yesterday morning, so I probably won’t type much today. Just a short update.

Not sure how to describe my feelings lately. This year has been chaotic and unexpected on various fronts, most especially in watching my former partner fall in love with someone else and become engaged, with the wedding scheduled for this January. That’s been a bit of a trip, though I do wish him well. Just leaves a person a bit unmoored when your people drift away. He’s still around so far as phone conversations are concerned, but he’s moved with her out of state and this month has successfully sold his house. Times change, as they need to. Still feels a bit bizarre though, seeing his life alter so dramatically in such a short amount of time. But he’s happier and he fits in well with her family.

I’ve set adrift this year, trying to figure out where to focus my attention since that chapter has officially been closed. I won’t go in to details about my lifestyle and proclivities here today — just know that so much remains up in the air and that shifts back and forth continue occurring. My business took a bit of a downturn over the summer due to a few clients moving out of state (seems everyone is fleeing this place all of a sudden), so that’s been a bit nerve-racking to contend with, forcing me to be much tighter with money. But money tends to be easy come, easy go, so I don’t worry too terribly much. I always find a way. Plus I’ve taken on a part-time side job, not so much for the additional money since it doesn’t pay well but for the opportunity to work in a completely different environment than I’m used to, learn some new skills, and to take up some of this time I find on my hands. Idle hands are the devil’s play things, so they say, and lord knows I’m prone to give my own inner gremlin too much leeway when bored.

Times aren’t bad, they’re just kinda different. Reconnected with a friend whom I had a bit of a falling out with back in the summer. Glad to be back around him and to be past all of that. We likely can prove valuable to one another if we play our cards right. Negative lifestyle choices always factor in to our ordeal, but maybe this time we’ll figure out a way to make things better. I’m no longer convinced I can contend with everything on my own. People need their tribes, need somewhere to belong and others worth trusting. Leaders worth following. But I also know that no one can save you but you.

Been lying low and unfortunately not felt up to chatting with family members who’ve reached out in recent times. Nothing personal, just don’t know what to say to them. Plans have changed and convictions overturned for the time being. Not wishing to worry them but also not interested in offering up justifications. Hence why I live 900 miles away. Space and privacy can be a luxury.

Sometimes I still think of leaving this place eventually, but I know not where I’d rather be. Winter is coming and it’s already getting bitterly cold here, per its norm. Still resistant to breaking out the thick winter coat just yet, but soon enough it will force my hand. In a way I’m kind of glad I won’t have to work outdoors as much for a change.

My soul hurts a bit lately. Been going to the gym off and on. Haven’t been to the shooting range in probably 3-4 weeks but will eventually. Yes, self-care matters, and I know I feel better when energy is exerted and physical intensity forces me out of my head for a spell. Stomach hurts a good bit this past week, but I ate well on Saturday when out with a friend and also made myself eat dinner last night. I have very mixed feelings about my life choices at present, but I’m trying to have a little faith that things will turn around in due time. As always, much of the problem lies within my own thoughts and framing of life. It’s difficult to feel grounded when the future appears so perplexing. I don’t know how to effectively respond to it other than to try to find a home, so to speak. Figure out where I belong and take up roots there. Because this blowing in the wind bullshit is for the birds. Done it for enough years and feel the toll it’s taken. Individualism is the bee’s knees, but we’re indeed collectivists by nature as well. And I can’t really see a point to any of it when viewed from my own isolated, alienated, individual perspective. That hasn’t changed and apparently will not. Moorings matter. Civic nationalism always used to matter to me too, but it’s no longer enough either, not when we see what’s being done politically here and abroad. We the common people are losing a say in how the future unfolds. Part of me finds it all rather terrifying, but part of me has been living with these thoughts so long that I’ve grown used to them. I just know that the orientation needed has be about something bigger than oneself, has to include others one can work with, or else all these precious principles we claim to care about wind up being meaningless in the end.

I’m not depressed currently. Or at least not to the level I once was. Some would call me “black pilled,” which I initially didn’t like the sound of but am growing to accept the term. I am, however, emotionally tired — worn out and needing to somehow recharge. This has been an ongoing concern that needs to be remedied. Some of us need people around and recognize how strange we can become when left to our own devices for too long. Sometimes it feels very necessary to pull away from others and hole up in my apartment alone and to take care of myself; but so too it feels necessary to come back out to socialize and reconnect and to share one’s den. It’s been interesting observing how noting so many of life’s complexities actually strips one down to paying attention to basic core concerns. It’s as if the bigger life shows itself to be, the smaller we seem therein and the more the root fundamentals come to matter. That’s what it’s been teaching me anyway.

So, life remains crazy and mad, as to be expected. A lot has changed and yet a lot still remains the same. I’m not certain of much right about now and have many mixed feelings. But I am glad to be back around someone whom I’ve missed. I have no idea what the future will hold for me and try very hard not to stress too much about it nowadays. It’s just life — try not to be overwhelmed by it. Keep it simple, stupid — a good mantra to keep in mind. My dreams have nearly all disintegrated over time, so I’m not entirely sure what to aspire toward now, truth be told. In a sense, I’m lost, but not entirely. Or at least I’m not overly panicked about that fact at the moment. Just feels paralyzing sometimes, not knowing where to turn or what to do. Expectations can do more harm than good. Stripping down to essentials appears to be the new name of the game. I’m not sure what it means to win, though I have a clearer idea of what it means to lose. Sometimes we need to tread water and just be where we’re at, letting go of the guilt and anger that keeps poisoning our psyches. Just be human, fallibilities and all. I keep asking myself what I’m afraid of, but I can’t say for certain. Lots of things, yet fewer things over time. Missing out on worthwhile experiences worries me.

My confidence isn’t high at this time. Insecurities are a plague. The hope is that through dedication to simplicity perhaps this will improve eventually. Conscientious living in an effort to combat (or at least learn to better manage) neuroticism. It’s all a big experiment, as always, trying to figure out what feels like the proper way onward.

All humans are potentially dangerous (story sharing)

Always good to keep that in mind. Seriously.

Had a weird event occur this week, and since I can’t get to sleep I might as well journal about it. This involves a young man I met at my old regular bar about 4 years ago when he as a 21 year old began coming in with his roommate. Just chatted casually there at times, and that was the gist of our relations throughout much of the time we’ve known one another. Then in recent months he began showing up at another local bar due to moving to a house in the neighborhood, so we ran into each other and became a little more familiar. Not much to it really since we don’t see one another often, I having been back and forth on re-quitting drinking throughout most of this year.

Fast forward to a couple months ago when he asked me out to dinner. Well, wait, before that there was a bit of an issue back in the spring when he would call and text my phone late at night, which I had to check him on a couple times, roughly at that, since I try my best to discourage most people from playing on my phone in the late-night hours. Thought I got through to him that that pissed me off, and so I dropped the matter and he eventually came back around to invite me to dinner in the summer. That went fine. We enjoyed chatting, had a decent night together. And then that was that. Basically went out separate ways afterward, for whatever reasons. Saw him out and about a couple more times, maybe.

I recall he texted a few weeks ago at 4am to ask me to lunch the next day, which I declined due to too short of notice. Once again explained to him that he needs to contact me during daytime hours to request that we go on a date, letting him understand that this disregard for my boundaries and sleep schedule is doing nothing to turn me on. Kind of irritating to keep having to spell this out to the guy, but he’s young and I grasp that youths aren’t too quick on the uptake so I was trying to have patience and explain myself clearly.

Then a couple weeks ago he tried texting me around 11pm, inviting me to meet him for drinks, which I declined since I quit drinking again (and intend to stick with my decision this time around — going on nearly 8 weeks as of today). Kept texting me that evening, and I kept telling him NO, not coming out, done with drinking, don’t appreciate being bugged when I’ve already said no. Was out grocery shopping at the time and was on the phone with my best guyfriend, so he heard about how persistent this young guy was proving to be.

Which then brings us to the events of this week. Wednesday night I laid down to go to sleep about 2am. Was watching a video and had just started to drift off when I heard my doorknob being jiggled, then came a knock. I’ve been sleeping in the livingroom (per my usual custom) so there’s not much distance from the front door and where I tend to sleep. I had no idea who it could be — maybe a crazy neighbor, maybe someone wanting to rob the place? No clue. So I jumped up and grabbed something to defend myself. Another knock at the door. It’s about 2:30am at this point. I’m half-dressed and already know from past experience with a crazy neighbor to not answer my door unless I’m damn sure of who’s on the other side. Called out asking who it was, and he said his name, which I couldn’t catch at first. That’s how much I know this guy — took me a minute on hearing his last name to even process who it was. Man, not too cool to show up here this late and completely unannounced, so I was hot under the collar about it right off the bat. But I decided to open the door and he then asked to come in, and I figured it would be best not to wake up everybody else in the corridor and so let him. Immediately took note of the fact that he was somewhat drunk. Smelled like liquor from a foot or two away. Not fucking cool.

So, he came in and I was pretty pissed, understandably so. Told him how not okay this shit is, in NO UNCERTAIN TERMS. Wasn’t in the mood to try to spell everything out to this otherwise typically non-idiotic guy. Not sure what the hell is wrong with him this year, but it’s grating on my nerves big-time by then. Anyway, I said my piece and he started acting like he thought I’d let him stay the night. Hell no! Stopped by unannounced and I had to work in the morning, plus we really don’t have this level of familiarity where he should be expecting anything from me so casually. He took off his coat and started untying his boots while I’m telling him he needs to head out. Started telling me about how he recently inherited some money — great, that has nothing to do with me, nor is an excuse to show up at my place in the middle of the night. Should’ve invited me out on a date like a normal person instead of disrespecting me this way. But it’s useless saying much to a drunk — goes in one ear and out the other. So, fuck it, I decided to get kinda loud and told him he needed to leave, which he finally did. Told him never to do this again while locking the door behind him. And that definitely should’ve been the end of the ordeal.

Though once you’re woken up like that it’s tough to get back to sleep, so I stayed up another half hour or so smoking a cigarette and watching part of another video. Nestled back in and tried to get to sleep when, lo and behold, here comes ANOTHER KNOCK on my door. I stayed silent and refused to answer, but I did look out the peephole and observed him standing in my hallway, using his phone. A few more minutes went by and then—DAMN, more jiggling of my doorknob followed by another knock. Answered that one briefly simply to shout at him to “Go home!” and locked the door again.

Now I’m wondering what on earth is wrong with this guy. Never figured on him being that crazy. Pondering on how maybe my judgment of him might’ve been flawed. Could he be dangerous? An hour had elapsed from the time he initially knocked, meaning he was hanging around my apartment building all that time — until about 3:45am. Laid back down and was once again starting to fall asleep when my phone rang across the room. Didn’t answer. A few minutes later it rang again. Gotta be fucking kidding me, right? Didn’t answer. Rang a third time — I answered to ask if he’s trying to make an enemy out of me, telling him to stop trying to contact me. Laid back down…a few minutes later a text message arrived. I ignored it and went to bed.

Woke in the morning to a message where he was apologizing, telling me how he was “seriously” sorry about the night before. Ignored it for several hours.

Forgot to mention that while he was inside my home he kept saying that he missed me, which was pretty weird considering we don’t hang out hardly ever and don’t know each other that well. That sent off a red flag in my head — never any fun to deal with in the middle of the night when you’re super tired and already sleep deprived after 2 nights of being woken up repeatedly by my cat walking all over me. Ugh. Just no fun at all to deal with. Yet in his drunken brain he seemed to think this should somehow melt me toward him, like he was expressing something of real significance to me, a woman 12 years older than him who’s wanting to be left alone and not harassed while trying to sleep.

Sometimes you have to ponder the audacity of some people. But then again, I’ve been a drunken idiot numerous times in the past myself, so…I do try to be somewhat understanding about that shit, though also firm with people about how I don’t want that bullshit around me any longer. Trying to heal, recover, and move forward in my life. Do my former barpals give a damn about that? No. Honestly they don’t. It’s just the way these types of people often can be. Done it enough years to know this for certain. And there’s no point in trying to reason with a person in such a state. Will only forget whatever you tell them. Even if you explain things to them while they’re sober, next time they get drunk they’ll either forget what was said or at least pretend to. Every. Fucking. Time.

I texted the guy Thursday afternoon to let him know how tired I was after being kept up all night, how I’m not interested in his empty apologies, and basically to never pull a stunt like that ever again. Crystal clear. He responded back: “Understood.” Talked to my best guyfriend about it later on and he didn’t like the sound of all of this and so requested the guy’s name. Just to be on the safe side and all.

You’d think that would be the definitive end to that crap, at least for this week. But no. At 2:41am today (now Saturday morning) my phone began ringing. Was from a number I didn’t recognize. After about 4 rings I finally picked it up. Guess who? Frickin’ amazing…

Shouted at him to never call me again. No more contact! He murmured something about how he just wanted to let me know he got a new number — as if that’s relevant in the middle of the night. I hung up.

And so now I can’t sleep. It’s approaching 5am and I need to be up in 4 hours, but I got to wondering if that son of a gun might try walking over here and knocking again, so I’m up. Shouldn’t have to deal with this, but I’m really not one to call the police unless it’s absolutely necessary. He’s treading on a fine line with me right about now, and only getting away with this much because I do know him and previously assumed he was a relatively sane and decent person. Now I’m not so sure. He received a head injury earlier in the spring (due to his drunken shenanigans), so I’m starting to wonder if possibly that has changed him somehow. Is he not the same young guy I thought he was? Is this just alcohol getting the best of him? Either way, I should be able to sleep in my own home in peace. Dialing and texting my phone was annoying enough, but stopping over unannounced is completely unacceptable. AND THIS IS WHY I RARELY LET PEOPLE KNOW WHERE I LIVE. People call me paranoid, but THIS is why I’m like that. This shit sucks.

Am considering my options currently. Emailed my best guyfriend after receiving that last call, letting him know what info I have on the guy (phone number, approximate address, full name). Just so that info is logged somewhere. I don’t play with people who behave like this. He’s not my boyfriend — we’ve been on exactly 1 date and he’s been to my place exactly 2 times (once a year or more ago, once this year). Knows me from the barscene, fine, but still — this is not acceptable. Why would he jiggle my doorknob like that, and not once but twice?? Even after I told him that scared the shit out of me. He knows I don’t play, and yet here he was, trying to mess with me anyway. Did he want to be cussed out? Because that’s what happened and what keeps happening and is what he can reliably expect from here on out. I won’t be any fun to deal with. The goal has become to create a strong disincentive so that he’ll give up on whatever he thinks he’s trying to pursue here and move along.

Part of me feels kinda bad for the kid. He’s told me previously about how his mom was a major alcoholic and he drinks a great deal himself, which we’ve discussed many times throughout our time knowing one another. I understand he wants someone to relate with, that he’s craving attention and comfort right now. And this is not the way to go about it. I do believe the alcohol is messing him up badly these days, that that’s probably the main culprit, but it’s not going to improve until he figures that out and decides to make a change. Still, it shouldn’t be my problem. The kid hasn’t taken any advice I’ve offered on that so far, and I’m busy working on helping myself these days. Can’t help someone who won’t help himself. Can’t even reason with him. So, there’s really nothing I can do here except walk away and maintain a firm boundary to ensure he keeps a distance from me. Won’t reward this shitty behavior and lack of respect. Am getting too old for such nonsense.

I figured this matter was over on Thursday, but here it is again on Saturday. Here’s hoping he heeds my warning and decides to move along, but I don’t trust people under the influence of drugs (alcohol most especially included). Have too much experience with how badly we can behave on that substance, with plenty of regrets of my own. I hate that lifestyle and wish it would cease and desist entirely in my realm. But maybe the gods are giving me this experience to strengthen my resolve and to clearly remind me how many problems one can create for oneself. He was otherwise a nice young man whom I enjoyed playing cards with and would’ve, under different circumstances, liked to have played board games with and listened to music. But no. Now he’s taken things too far, and that cannot be tolerated. Give someone like that an inch and he’ll take a mile. No respect for boundaries or rules. Seems to think he can win me over by appealing to my sympathy — not alluring.

So much feels like looking in a mirror nowadays. I’ve made so many poor choices in the past that I can usually find a way to relate to others’ drunken shenanigans. Hard to not feel guilty about the times I’ve made others uncomfortable when it was totally uncalled for. But that still doesn’t mean I ought to be tolerant of that behavior in others now. It was wrong then and it’s wrong now, regardless of which one of us is responsible for the bullshit at the time. The best thing any of us could do for ourselves and others is leave these substances alone. Obviously turns some of us into people we don’t want to be. Gives a person reason for regrets that can last years. Not to mention how many of our relationships wound up damaged along the way.

It’s not as if I’m devoid of compassion for the guy, but I can’t fix anything there, nor should I have to put up with it. It’s truly sad to see younger folks going down that same wretched path of self-destruction. Hell, check out the old folks who succumbed to it — pretty gross to behold. Who wants to become that? Who wants that to be their story in the end? And I know the young man likes me and looks up to me (or at least he seemed to), but he’s stepped over a line here and has to get that through his head. He’s ruined relations with me at this point. And now he’s gotten me worried about what he might wind up doing next or if this will become a more regular occurrence. I’m not going to stand by silently while losing nights of sleep as he’s trying to demand my attention. Puts me in a bad position since I don’t want the kid to get in trouble because he won’t control himself, yet I have to think about taking care of myself here. This is my home. You do not bring bullshit to my doorstep. Romantic partners might give one another some grief, but that’s not who he is to me. I don’t think he means harm, but he doesn’t seem to be thinking much at all right now. Just wanting something, nevermind how the other person feels. Alcohol is a hell of a drug — true story. Can allow a person to behave very selfishly and myopically.

Anyway, I need to try lying down again since time is ticking by and tomorrow (or, technically, later tonight) I have a dinner date scheduled with a very sweet older man whose company I enjoy very much and who’s always behaved like a gentleman toward me thus far. Really prefer not to be tired all day again, so I’ll probably have to shoot for a nap in the afternoon if possible. Am not too good at crashing during daylight hours.

Never a dull moment…

More joys of apartment living. Some neighbor down the way nearly caught the building on fire. Was sitting in the livingroom yesterday late afternoon and heard sirens nearby, then kept hearing sirens until finally I decided to go investigate. Thought maybe there was a problem on my street, but no, somebody downstairs fell asleep while cooking, so other neighbors told me. Apparently the guy was passed out drunk and his upstairs neighbor heard his smoke detector going off. She and another woman knocked on his door, no answer. Fire department arrived and knocked again — no answer. So they beat his door in. They said the guy finally woke up after that and began drunkenly fanning the smoke in his apartment with an empty beer carton.

Ugh. Yeah. Always something happening here. But the ordeal brought a lot of us out to see what was going on, during which I introduced myself to a neighbor down the hall who turns out to have lived here the last 3 years. Shows how much I interact with others who live here — my bad.

The guy downstairs responsible for the incident is said to be new here (personally never seen him before), and the word is that our landlord plans to boot him after this fiasco. Probably for the best.

Been waiting for somebody to eventually fuck around and catch this place on fire. Nearly 10 years here and no one has managed it so far (*knock on wood*), though one previous resident did manage to catch her stovetop on fire to where the entire appliance had to be replaced. Other than that, we’ve been pretty lucky. Kind of nerve-wracking living so close to others whom you depend on to at least not destroy all of our shit — that being the downside of apartment dwelling. I pay for rental insurance, but still, it would majorly suck to lose my home and everything I own because of someone else’s carelessness. The other neighbors were pretty pissed about the ordeal, as is understandable.

Alcohol’s a hell of a drug. I keep repeating that because it’s true. Many of us probably know what it’s like to pass out and wake up to smoke because we’re burning food. but that’s really not okay. Too much at stake to let that happen.

So…now entering my 7th week of sobriety (this time around), I’m grateful for the strength to walk away from such a destructive lifestyle. Been down that road too many times already — always leads to the same place. Always involves letting others down in one way, shape or form. Always culminates in disappointment and regret. Sincerely wishing so many of us would leave that drug alone, especially when it leads to foolhardy shit like that described above where people’s lives could’ve been put at risk. It’s no good.

An actually helpful grip tip when starting out shooting (plus additional thoughts)

Came across a video last night on the topic of proper grip when shooting:

Others kept telling me to simply grip tight and stay high up, but what this man explained is what he referred to as the c-clamp hand-grip and how that’s better than letting your fingers curl around in a squeeze since that impacts the trigger finger. Good call. Tried out his advice today and shot better than I have thus far, as someone who hasn’t shot often throughout my life (nor ever been properly trained) until in recent months when I began heading to the local shooting range (typically on my own).

A lady who works at the range has offered me pointers during a few visits, and I’ve tried to apply her advice as well. But this man’s explanation of proper gripping technique proved to be just what I needed. Pressing the grip from the front (in a pulling motion) and the back (in a forward motion)—basically squeezing the front and back portions of the grip of the gun specifically with my right hand and worrying less about the sides (though applying pressure against the grip with my left hand for stabilizing purposes)—makes sense to me now. Before I just squeezed all the way around with my right hand and pressed in as hard as I could with my left, because that’s what folks seemed to be advising me to do. Getting your other fingers out of the movement does help because the trigger finger wants to react when the resent of them curl tight.

It was an ah-ha moment, however small it might seem to others.  lol  Papa never explained much about guns other than don’t point them at others and then just try to aim in the direction of what you want to shoot and pull the trigger. Nothing else. No discussion of sights or proper holding of the gun or even explanation of what he handed me to shoot. So, that was my early experience with guns — the occasional opportunity to point at bottles in a sand pit and try to plink them off without much preparation of know-how. My one time at the shooting range with my ex-stepdad in my early 20s was no more educational, except for him being more safety conscious (and the location required wearing hearing protection, something Papa never brought up).

Fast forward several years and I had only been out shooting a handful of times as an adult. A guyfriend here or there allowed me to shoot at something on some rare occasions. A couple years ago two family members allowed Grandma and me to come out to shoot on their land after I had purchased my first revolver and wanted to try it out. My second-cousin and great-uncle were kind enough to share their guns as well so that I could try shooting them across the pond to see how they felt. That was a fun day, though I still didn’t know much beyond pointing and pulling the trigger. Managed to shoot all right under the circumstances though. At least hit the cardboard target much of the time.

Last November my former partner and I headed to the shooting range for the first time together ever to try out a second semi-auto handgun I had purchased. For years I had been wanting to learn more about shooting, increasingly out of self-defense concerns, but most of the men in my life never got around to taking me to the range or showing me anything despite many promises to do so. And I finally grew tired of waiting on them to make time. My former partner hadn’t fired a weapon in close to 20 years by then and is only very slowly getting back into the “hobby” again himself and so couldn’t really instruct me on much. Though he was kind enough to purchase some cleaning accessories for my guns as a gift.

So, I’m a perpetual newb at shooting. Decided to try to change that earlier this year and pressured my guyfriends to go to the range with me. One acquaintance did go with me one time, which was my first opportunity to shoot an AR-15. Extremely loud. But he and I parted ways for other reasons and haven’t been in contact since. The former military guy I used to hang around kept talking about wanting to go to the range with me — never happened. An old buddy I’ve known for many years keeps saying he wants to take me out into the country to shoot — as of this summer, still hasn’t happened. I understand he’s busy, but damn. How many years have we known one another now? Nine?  Grrr…

I get it. The whole world is busy with jobs and raising kids or drinking themselves into oblivion, etc. So I decided to take the initiative myself and signed up at a local shooting range and have been going in probably a couple times a month (on ladies’ day when it’s discounted) since probably late spring this year. Took pictures of a few of my targets afterward to send to close friends to demonstrate my progress (or lack thereof). Got frustrated on more than one occasion, wondering what I was doing wrong. Tried my best to listen to the lady who works there’s advice and apply it since she’s really the only teacher I have at this point. And I’ve watched many videos online to pick up what tips I can, though there’s so much conflicting info and hyped up material that doesn’t suit my modest needs.

One channel I’ve found great value in is Hickok45’s:

Basic stuff, sure, but it helps to gain a better understanding of why you’re being told to do whatever you think you’re trying to do.

His channel is chocked full of worthwhile things to know, considering how much babbling there is online about the differences between guns and people’s preferences. Can be difficult to separate the wheat from the chaff and find those gems worth following.

Truth be told, I haven’t found hardly any female shooter channels I’ve been interested in following. So many are involved either in competitive shooting or are mostly just trying to sell gun-related items to other women or appear to be more directed toward attracting male viewers with sex appeal. Maybe that’s just what comes up in my feed — surely there are quality female shooter channels out there that I haven’t discovered yet that provide practical, no-frills and no-bullshit advice and ideas. But until I find them, I’ll continue sticking mostly with Hickok’s channel and a handful of others.

TL;DR: The first grip-related video up above helped improve my accuracy immediately — necessary basics lesson. The next 2 videos shown are of Hickok45’s channel, which is a quality resource for other newbs like me (and more experienced shooters). Highly recommended.

If anyone has any other channels or specific videos or websites on this topic they’d like to recommend, I’m all ears.

Perhaps it can be no other way…

Some people say they can’t understand how so many others can be deceived into supporting communism and denouncing capitalism. Others say they can’t comprehend the logic of those who display signs stating “support the blue.” People also like to talk about how silly it is to follow religions and pray to unverifiable deities.

There’s so much we can’t grasp about one another.

Something I can’t understand about a number of you is how so often you prove willing to accept government’s official narratives about events that couldn’t possibly have played out as described. Case in point: the events on 9/11/01. I’m still stuck back there, unable to accept political discourse since then as being anything more than farce. Yet I apparently belong to a minority in possessing these views. That’s been troubling me for a long time, this representing either a severe departure from reality for myself or for a whole bunch of you.

So I keep turning back to the question, again and again, trying to locate the flaw in my own thinking since people like to say that when you find yourself in opposition to most others, the problem likely lies within yourself. Fine. Challenge accepted. This has been an ongoing struggle in trying to reckon with what my lying eyes and mind are telling me versus what so many of the rest of you are saying.

A video I came across last night, just one more in a long line over the years, on top of so much I’ve read on the subject, along with the contradictory news reports from back around that time in 2001:

Building 7 makes no sense in accordance with the official narrative. Most won’t even touch that portion of the story, leading me to believe that people won’t reckon with its implications precisely because they fear the questions that will unearth. Flight 93 makes little sense either. Nor does the Pentagon attack. Nor do the twin towers falling into their own footprint.

Yet I’ve read where physicists dismiss such inquiries with condescension. And I’ve taken note of the many mainstream publications backing the official narrative. I’ve also listened to military personnel aggressively admonish people who dare to scrutinize the official claims.

And still I remain stuck, unable to go along with the flow of what appears to be the majority in this country. Do my eyes and mind deceive me?

Everything turns into little more than a circus in light of that information. And the inquiry into it forces one back further into history, learning about how America hasn’t been what we’d like to believe for at least a century. Then further back, branching out across world history. Through this exploration I’ve learned a great deal about human nature and how people are willing to believe nearly anything under the right circumstances. How we’re prone to repeat certain cycles. How successive generations wind up having to learn hard truths for themselves, again and again, despite all prior warnings laid out for them by those who came and learned the hard way before.

Such inquiries have led me to the understanding that I am wasting my time and energy in identifying too closely with our human/material realm. Hence why past people sought to turn toward God probably. It’s a never-ending maze that covers the same ground again and again, yet we so often remain blinded to this fact. So much is an illusion, created by us and for us. Power has been the name of the game since antiquity. Lies and deception aren’t new, though what is new is the vast amount of information available to us today, allowing us to challenge what’s presented before us and compare it to historical precedents.

And yet still, many refuse to look. Why?

Because to do so would undermine our current beliefs, hopes, dreams and strategies. How does one orientate oneself within a twisted labyrinth with no way up or out? What does one believe in when the principles we’ve been taught to embrace and uphold are exposed as mere talking-point lures to lead us toward serving ends that defy these very same principles? What is the value of Truth in an impossible see of misinformation/disinformation, wherein acknowledging what is real leads to ostracism, ridicule and even threats of violence? Worse, where such expressed thoughts can get one labeled as “crazy” and, if very unlucky, sent involuntarily away to be evaluated by psychiatry professionals.

That’s where the truth appears to stand today. Exceedingly unpopular, rendering those who insist on speaking it social misfits and pariahs.

Certainly doesn’t help that there’s also this label of “conspiracy theorist” whereby one gets dismissed right away for mentioning anything associated with its major talking points. Also doesn’t help that some who embrace such subject matter are prone to take up other lines of inquiry that are much less provable/more speculative, reducing the credibility of “conspiracy theories” as a whole in the eyes of many onlookers.

I get to thinking sometimes these days that there really is no point in trying to “wake” people up to these ideas any longer. Sometimes I wrestle with the question of whether it’s right to even attempt to do so when they seem so blissful in their ignorance as is. Perhaps shattering their illusions is cruel and would only likely lead them toward deep depressions that they might not escape. Is it the selfish side of oneself that wishes them to see what you see, even if that means paying for it by descending into hell as a result? Is it a case of misery loving company? I suffer in this way and so should you? I don’t know.

But I have a few people close to me who claim to be happy and beg of me not to mention these sort of things, preferring their tranquility to remain intact. One I speak with on these topics occasionally, but he’s immune to my concerns on the topic. Just goes right along with his day as if nothing had been said at all. Never stops to question. Never seems to care. As much as I love him, I have never been able to understand him on this level. I’ve been forced to accept that it’s truly a difference in our personalities. But what he calls optimism, I call distracted escapism. Sure, he’s a good person. Probably a lot better and more helpful than I am. Yet in this instance he blatantly and outright prefers to not know. He prefers his peace of mind. He prefers the comfortable lie.

I told him today that while I can sympathize with people like himself, I won’t pretend to respect that decision. He said nothing in response.

And that’s how it goes. The silence of friends can be deafening at times. Many times I’ve wondered if I’m just losing my mind here. If there’s something wrong with how I interpret information. If I’m truly and utterly deluded in this respect. And if so, what can be done about it? But then I return to the materials and keep digging for answers, and it keeps telling me that I’m not wrong on this. Might not know what did happen on 9/11, but I know damn well what didn’t happen. What couldn’t possibly have happened. Regardless of what so-called “experts” have come out saying otherwise. They’re doing a disservice to their own fields of study by confusing people about the sciences in an effort to prop up political preferences. Deep down I believe they know that. I hope they do, anyway.

I’ve been wrong on plenty of things in this life. Don’t normally assume myself to be right about much. Mostly I am a wanderer and ponderer, asking questions and listening to various viewpoints while studying life. But there are a couple areas where I have to take a stand and state the obvious. Call me loony for plenty else, fine, but a building on fire for a few hours doesn’t fall like that. To “pull” a building means to intentionally demolish it.

Demolition.

A fire doesn’t cause a steel structure to fall like that (or to fall at all). Recall that that building wasn’t even hit by a plane.

How are we, in good conscience, to continue pretending this didn’t happen and that our government didn’t lie about it? How is it all right to lead people to believe there’s something wrong with themselves mentally if they won’t believe and accept the official narrative?

No, we’re certainly not all on the same team. That’s been made clear many times over. Many will sell the rest upstream if it means their precious illusions can be maintained for just a little while longer. Many care more about redecorating their homes and pleasing their corporate bosses than they do about the state of this nation. So why do I care about the state of this nation? I don’t have kids. The future isn’t mine. Why do I care about law and order if so many of the rest of you obviously do not, despite all your lip service to the contrary?

Not sure how to answer that, though I’ve felt my allegiance to our so-called social contract waning for quite a while now. What do I owe any of you? If ignorance is bliss, then have at it. You receive the government you deserve.

Sounds cold-hearted, doesn’t it? Does to me too. I don’t wish to feel this alienated, but I don’t know how to swallow lies and smile while doing so. I’d rather be alone if that’s the trade-off. So greater solitude is something I’m trying to make peace with currently. Can’t stand to watch another person walk away from these realizations and head back to the bar where he can drown it all out, year after year. Hard to listen to those close to me say they’d rather stay happy, nevermind these ongoing, unjustified wars in the Middle East that our tax dollars fund. How she’s too anxious about her own problems and past, too busy raising kids right now to worry over such seemingly irrelevant matters…

I’m not trying to judge my people harshly. But I do judge all of us. Someday when our economy topples and foreign nations intrude on our domestic affairs, do you think they will look upon us with kindness and charity for our human rights record? Do you imagine they will sympathize with our extravagantly hedonistic ways that led us astray? Will our God hear our prayers once we’re forced down our knees?

I don’t know. I just know this isn’t right, and I wish we’d care more about the exploration for truth rather than simply securing our comfort. And that’s a pipe dream. Humans simply are this way and always have been. Some of us have a fetish for staring into abysses, but that doesn’t necessarily make us better people either. I’m not sure what the game plan ought to be anymore or how to orientate oneself in this situation. Our government lies to us more often than not, and there’s little reason to have much faith in my fellow Americans to do a damn thing about it. I try to forgive us for being this way — perhaps we cannot help. Perhaps people have always been prone this way because it’s simply something within our nature hell-bent on being this way. So maybe it really can’t be helped. Maybe those who say there’s nowhere to turn but to God are correct. Whatever that even means in a world where religions have proven very deceptive as well.

Perhaps radical individualism is our fate. Maybe it can be no other way. Even as so many others opt to collectivize so as to skew power in their favor…

This is what an existential crisis looks like.

Anti-fascist?

Taking a look into George Soros:

A very powerful many indeed.

Consider this: if this is the face of anti-fascism, can you perhaps better understand his supposedly fascistic opposition? By that I really mean nationalists whose aim it was to protect their nations from influence by globalists of his sort. People pledging allegiance to their own cultures and histories rather than embracing a globalizing agenda wherein they lose local power and control.

Is it so hard to imagine why people might object to the activities of someone like George Soros? The meddling by his international Open Society Foundations into matters of great consequences to the peoples of these nations? Question: Does Haiti appear better off today after years and years of intervention by Soros and the Clinton Foundation?

Russia and Hungary (the latter being Soros’ own home-country) have in recent times ousted Soros’ foreign-funded NGOs and, as a result, been labeled as backward, “repressive,” “xenophobic parties” and “authoritarian” governments that pose a threat to human rights. Soros has even decided to sue Hungary for their refusal to tolerate his extremely powerful influence there. Does he sound like he’s really in pursuit of upholding human rights when he refuses to allow a nation of people to decide national policies for themselves? In that instance having to do with rejecting the EU’s immigration quota.

I am not a fan of George Soros. Though that doesn’t automatically make me a fan of his opponents either. Partisan politics has never been my bag. But I find it interesting how his organizations have influenced media outlets and encouraged negative reporting against the Koch brothers for donating millions of dollars to colleges while his own Open Society Foundations have donated nearly as many millions (if not more) to institutions of learning (mostly abroad) — though it deserves to be stated that Soros’ main priority has been direct political funding and lobbying efforts, particularly to groups dubbed 527 organizations (less traceable; made publicly known through leaked documents). That’s a supreme bias, which I don’t doubt Soros would dismiss as boiling down to amoral competition among rival camps. Still, it’s interesting to note how dirty he plays in aiming to undermine those he opposes via smear campaigns, casting doubt upon their motives while protecting his own from as much scrutiny.

I say all of this as someone who’s been highly skeptical of the Koch brothers in the past but who now realizes I may have been swayed for the wrong reasons. Perhaps I should take another look into who they are and what they support instead of taking the word of media outlets paid to speak against their efforts.

Though, admittedly, I’m not too cool with this trend of billionaires dumping money into universities in an effort to impact curriculum in their own ideological favor, regardless of which side of the aisle they happen to belong to. Nor was I a supporter of the Citizens United decision for campaign financing. But I suppose these are the times we now live in…

Fascists?

This week a new figure has come across my radar whom I knew little about: Oswald Mosley.

To get a feel for his preaching style back in the day, here’s a portion of a documentary titled “Europeans”:

Relevant portion beginning 1:13:25 in.

I have yet to watch the full documentary, only that end portion. One could dismiss it as propaganda, sure, but that doesn’t drain it of its intensity and prescience. People are attracted to this sort of information precisely because European nations have once again come under siege, this time as a result of their own leaders, adherents to the EU policies, who insist in flooding the land with immigrants from outside cultures, many of whom express no desire to assimilate within these Western cultures. That’s a problem for those who appreciate and wish to protect their heritage, as most humans are wont to do.

That they employed fascism as a means of protecting these cultures historically continues to perplex and upset our modern sensibilities. Which is understandable considering how much propaganda we have been fed in recent decades that denounce such movements as anti-Semitic and barbaric. It’s difficult to argue against what we’ve been taught about the Holocaust as it being anything other than a destructive and dark force. However, I find it helpful to attempt to suspend judgment for a spell and to try to imagine the perspective of Europeans at that point in history. Were they truly little more than blood-thirsty tyrants seeking a scapegoat to blame? That appears to be an uncharitable interpretation of events leading up to one of the worst wars the world had ever known. Why would people be so willing to die for that cause? What were they feeling so threatened by that they’d be willing to lay down their lives to oppose it?

There’s more to the story than we’re typically taught, as is usually the case. The victors write the history books and the opposition are commonly derided as lunatics deserving to be discarded in the waste bins of history. And yet, we’re made aware that the problem has not since been rectified and that people continue to seethe with resentment for how their resistance has been treated and ridiculed and distorted in the decades since. Might be a good time to stop and listen to those we’re so eager to dismiss as “fascists” so as to understand that they too were human beings, not mere monsters bent on the pursuit of power for no purpose — that they too were invested in protecting their cultures and societies against persons and opposing ideologies seeking to overtake them.

What would we do when confronted with forces that threaten to unravel all that we are and have ever been? All of history laid low and diminished, reconstructed in the textbooks with the goal to demonize those who came before in an effort to usher in a new vision for humanity. Nevermind if that new vision is antithetical to what most people actually want and believe in. If it’s packaged nicely enough and sold to us as progressive and bound to improve our lots in life, we buy into it. Foolishly so.

What am I referring to here? What many refer to openly nowadays as the New World Order. It’s not a new concept, though it’s no longer shrouded in secrecy. It’s the goal set by powerful financiers and the like who believe their vision for humanity should be brought to fruition by any means necessary. This goal has been made abundantly clear by now, and it was in the earlier stages of development around the time of the World Wars. People then saw it as a menace just as people now are reawakening to it. And it has been winning.

This is not merely about Europeans of old and their resistance. This issue now extends to include us all, peoples of far-flung nations. Some say it began with the formation of the Federal Reserve system (ushered in finally in 1913 in the U.S. after many prior attempts to do so), though it appears to date back much further than that, though that definitely was a key moment in time worth wrapping one’s mind around. Who all is behind this global initiative and why? That remains a debated topic that there are no clear and easy answers to. Just know that life is incredibly strange and that much of what we’ve been taught is not wholly accurately. In fact, much of it is deliberately skewed so that we might misunderstand the events of the early 20th century and not seek to reanimate them in the present day.

Before we go any further, let’s look at an interview Oswald Mosley did in 1975:

Observe the interviews’ interest in trying his best to paint Mosley as an anti-semite through and through. Despite Mosley explaining that the issue he took was with some Jews, not all, and with Zionism in particular. That’s a tactic still proving popular today, where we’re accused of anti-semitism if we level any criticism at all toward Israel or toward famous and powerful bankers and financiers who happen to be Jewish (like George Soros or the Rothschild dynasty). Even if we critique Israel’s decision to not open its national borders to immigrants while encouraging other nations to do so we’re commonly caricatured as if we’re knuckle-dragging idiots who secretly detest all Jews and who wish to see Israel wiped off the face of the planet. That slippery slope form of argument is all the rage still today and it seeks to place Jewish people uniquely in a category above reproach. This is identity politics, yes, and it achieves its aims through shaming people into staying silent by threatening to label us with the dreaded anti-Semitic epithet.

Why do we fear such epithets? Well, for one, it’s usually unwarranted and inaccurate. But, thinking beyond the box, does it not signal to wider society that we’re despicable persons? That we’re backwards and deserving of having abuse heaped upon us? For a relatively small minority on the planet, Jewish folks (or at least the popular ideology claiming to protect them in recent decades) have garnered immense power when this has become the case in all Western nations. Seriously think about that. We like to imagine we’re simply being protective of this group of people out of respect for historical atrocities that befell them, but is that really all there is to the story? A scratch of the surface demonstrates there’s more to it than that, but we’re strongly discouraged from speaking about it with one another publicly. To do so is to invite being labeled as a “fascist” or a “white supremacist,” with all the negative connotations associated with that. You’re automatically deemed illiberal, primitive and monstrously evil. Why must that be the case?

I personally believe in questioning everything. If someone says a topic is off-limits, I will investigate it out of stubborn rebellion. Because I strongly believe information channels deserve to remain open and that no vein of inquiry should be disallowed in our discussions and research. Because I prize protecting free speech and free thought over fitting in and following the herd. It helps to start off as an unpopular type, freeing you up to remain unpopular since you don’t know what you’re missing. Accusations and labels are par for the course. But that’s not to say such accusations don’t have teeth. Indeed they can. If you’re aiming to work your way up a corporate ladder, you’ll likely choose to keep such thoughts to yourself and to instead parrot what you’ve been instructed to believe is true. Luckily, the corporate world never held much appeal to me and I’m content with remaining relatively poor. There’s freedom in not being bound too tightly into the wider game, allowing more flexibility with fewer concern for consequences. And why should there be consequences to merely speaking words and sharing ideas? To investigating what really happened and why? Because powers-that-be actively discourage that and will try to make an example out of those who step out of line.

Imagine how much power that must entail to exert so much control over people, worldwide. This consideration unto itself demonstrates how entrenched it all is and how far back it spreads. The new normal. For an American to call upon our representatives to curb the amount of money handed over to Israel would spell out political suicide. Even to request greater oversight and accounting there will garner nasty insults and labels from elites and your brainwashed fellow Americans who don’t even know why they support what they do. It’s clear enough that we’ve been thoroughly programmed via our media and politicians to not only accept this way of life but to believe it to be right, beyond question. Beyond scrutiny. Does that not strike any of the rest of you as a bit queer?

We live in strange times that are growing stranger. To stand up against the EU is to be bashed and treated as an ignorant redneck best kept out of serious political conversations. Backwards — they love that word. Why? Because they see their way as the only right way forward. Is it? Well, if the Georgia Guidestones are any indicator I’d say that we’re all being played. In the end very few of us will matter. We’re mostly of value now in that we prove quite effective at keeping one another down.

Is all of this “conspiracy theory” mumbo-jumbo? Some like to paint it as such. And sure, there are plenty of people who will extend these ideas much further and incorporate all sorts of extraneous theories that can’t be proven or that seem so incredibly outlandish as to be little more than distractions. But because some lunatics exist says nothing about whether any and all conspiracies are fiction. Humans conspire. It’s what we do. We collude so as to protect what power we have and/or to acquire more of it. There are powerful persons in the world who operate behind the scenes in pushing agendas that many of us oppose. George Soros and his Open Society Foundation are a clear demonstration of that. It’s not even a secret any longer. And he was there back in the days of WWII, getting his start in first aiding the Nazis…but now look at what he’s up to. Is what he’s pushing today fascism? No. But it is a form of socialism of sorts. I’d argue it’s not truly going to improve the lives of most people and that really he’s sowing seeds of discord among us.

So what do we mean when we refer to fascism? National socialism? Is what we see unfolding in European nations and the U.S. truly nationalistic? No. Not anymore. Mussolini’s famous reference to fascism being little more than a fusion of government and corporations apparently had to do with nationalizing companies and guilds, bringing them under the power and influence of the ruling body of the time. Yet today in America we see major (global) corporations infiltrating and dominating our political system. In other words, the opposite scenario. Are we truly a capitalist nation? No, not since corporatism came on the scene and began dismantling capitalism (the origins of which stem back centuries). Are we a socialist nation? In some respects, arguably we are. Though the push to usher in more immigration and to ignore our borders is distinctly non-nationalistic in nature. Are we ruled by major corporate interests? To an extent, yes. And yet they have no loyalty to America and will abandon us when it proves most profitable to do so.

Is Israel nationalistic? Very much so. Is Israel socialistic?

Is this truly a battle between capitalism and communism playing out on the world stage? Not so much anymore. Dr. Erich Fromm wrote in one of his books about how capitalism and communism exist on the same continuum, whereas communism is what capitalist nations eventually have to look forward to. Not sure if he’s right about that, but it’s an interesting proposition.

I have no answers here. Only countless questions. I won’t guess at what the future holds since unforeseen variables can flip the script. But I do see us being forced to kowtow to narratives that aren’t serving us at present, and it seems a shame that we allow ourselves to be limited in these ways. It’s neither a position belonging on the political Left or Right to acknowledge these facts either. I just know that human life is messy and we should be cautious about accepting the claim that an entire people were monsters with no justification whatsoever for their actions, especially when they’ve otherwise generally proven to be high-minded, creative and well-educated. Such claims do not compute. There’s more to the story than we’re hearing. Question all narratives.

“The Land of my Ancestors” (my thoughts)

Isn’t this how it truly is? Inescapable truth collides with modern lofty idealism.

“Civilized” aspects of our being are always a veneer, something that is cultivated to allow us humans to build and prosper within civilizations. But it doesn’t run deep, nowhere as deep as the primitive portions of our being that call out for respect for shared blood, soil and sweat.

People like to dismiss such talk as “tribalistic,” as if it’s somehow avoidable. As if it’s a relic of bygone years that no longer matter, that no longer have a place at our civilized table. To those people, all I can say is that you do not understand human nature. Not deeply. And you will be in for a great disillusionment before all is said and done.

This is a topic that I ponder on often and am conflicted about. Not because I can’t understand but rather because I can. It is a bit terrifying to comprehend that so much of what we take for granted today may not withstand the turbulence on the horizon. Much of what we’ve come up dreaming about are just that — dreams, and little else. Wishful thinking. Naive and unrealistic.

The maternal side of my family (that being the genealogy I am familiar with) has roots in the South stemming back 250 years. Who knows when we first arrived on this continent from Western Europe? One record I looked at over a decade ago of a man sharing my Papa’s surname was brought over and directly placed in indentured servitude where he died. Unsure if he was part of my direct bloodline since so much has proven untraceable. Churches have burnt down, records have been destroyed. But he was the first with our name recorded on this continent, and he died as little more than a slave. My family records dating as far back as I’ve been able to locate have shown we were not slave owners either. Were too poor to be so. Arrived in Mississippi poor in the mid-1700s and managed to stay that way. And yet people blame us anyway, calling out our skintone as if that alone can tell you much of relevance about a people.

I’ve grown up in a society that speaks down about the U.S. South, denigrating us as a bunch of racists historically and presently. We’re taught this in our school curriculum, especially up north where the narrative largely goes unchallenged. We were taught to see ourselves as “rednecks,” “hillbillies,” “crackers,” and basically the scum of this country. The war fought for secession has forever been rubbed in people’s faces and used to vilify folks with the false claim that all was fought over slavery, that we were never about anything other than supporting and defending the plantation owners and their economic interests. It doesn’t make sense, but people repeat it, generation after generation, without questioning its validity. They continue to denounce us as racists despite the South remaining the home of the highest population of black people in this nation. You would think if Southerners were so racist that their descendants would’ve moved away over the last 150 years to escape the racial tensions — would’ve relocated to the Midwest where far fewer black people reside outside of the major cities. And yet they don’t. Blame it on stubborn pride if you must.

I personally know better. I’ve learned over the years how many people talk out of both sides of their mouths. How they pretend to care about people whom they would never agree to live near. How their politics parade as if concerned about those deemed to have the most unfortunate circumstances, when in reality they don’t give a damn. It’s just posturing. A way to make themselves feel good and look good to others. A reason to pat themselves on the back for being so “progressive.” Yet they don’t really want to know about the cultures and the history and what continues to bind people’s hands.

And now, these same types of people wish to push for and celebrate evermore “diversity” and “multiculturalism.” While they reside safely in their suburban cul-de-sacs and gated communities. While they secretly look down on us who they see as dirty, backwards, uncivilized. You know they are looking down on black people too. They just like to pretend the opposite is true. They look down on Hispanics also, feigning concern for them while reaping the benefits their “cheap labor” produces.

That’s what so much of this is really all about: economics. That was true in the days leading up to the Civil War and remains true ever since. Agrarianism versus the rise of Industrialization. The need to drive people out of small community-sustaining and self-sufficient or otherwise subsistence modes of productivity so that they would flee toward big cities and become cogs in some corporate system. This is what I mean when I keep repeating that slavery never ended, it just changed shapes. What was once called slavery is now rebranded as cheap labor. What’s the real difference? Now the workers are more expendable, more easily replaceable, and their employers are no longer responsible for housing and feeding them. Do you see that? Externalization happened. What was once the slave owners’ responsibility is no longer of concern to the modern employer.

People like to say that capitalism ought to be unregulated by the government, but if not for consumer protections fought for and enshrined in law working conditions would’ve remained terrible. When early capitalists could get away with working people to the bone, they did. No more concern about whether a person lived or died on the job because another person was waiting to take their place. Forever another person in waiting. The necessity to chase the all-mighty dollar fuels everything in modern times.

Hence why borders are being threatened once again. The desire for cheaper labor persists. Hence why American companies packed up and moved to Mexico and China since the 1980s where they can produce cheaper products with less government oversight and then turn around and sell those products back to us for a higher profit. Walmart destroyed many small towns in favor of this scheme, including my own hometown. And yet we’re not supposed to talk about that, lest we be labeled as socialists or communists.

The labels keep us from honestly reckoning with what’s happening around us and up over time.

But back to our blood bonds to our ancestors…  There is something within plenty of us that howls back toward history. Can’t escape its cry, its call for an awakening to where we’ve come from and where we stand now. We’re being taught to divvy up and see one another as problems and oppressors, when in reality we’ve all been played. Furthermore, why should we be made ashamed of our histories and our tribal instincts? Because we were not all on the same team didn’t mean that we were automatically enemies originally. But now we’re becoming so. Now we’re instructed to see one another as mere demographics, labels — a new form of tribalism, this time divided according to politics and class. But many of us remain in the same place we’ve always been, unmoved by these shifting tides. Still not far from the bottom, holding no significant claims to power, watching as we’re being whipped into competitive frenzies and encouraged to attack others in not much better positions than ourselves.

Plenty of us long for a simpler life. For simpler relations instead of being cast adrift in a sea of strangers and opportunists. People possess a need to create communities and to draw boundaries and to protect and conserve, yet all of that is being actively undermined. Though it’s not as if human nature changes overnight. Because we’re being forced into new circumstances doesn’t erase our primal needs. Because society and its expectations have changed over time says nothing about who and what we are and have always been and still remain. A culture or economy may “evolve,” but human evolution is much slower. It doesn’t become what we wish it would be. And I doubt all the social and genetic engineering we devise will be able to surmount that Truth.

Time for work.

Maybe, maybe not

Feels good to vent on here lately. Gotta think out loud some way to work the thoughts out and examine them.

Never expecting others to agree with me. Hell, I don’t always agree with me.  lol

I don’t know what the future holds. The optimistic side (if I can call it that) within is keen on keeping an open mind about unforeseen variables. Nada es impossible. Though, it’s not clear how we figure that shit’s going to change for the better while we’re not paying close attention. Not on the day-to-day political back-and-forth shenanigans necessarily — just in trying to gain a better understanding of where we as a nation have come from; what history in general (assuming one can locate a morsel of genuine history) has to teach us humans; what our psychologies involve; what social trends over the last century or two have pushed society to where it stands currently, etc., etc.

Instead so often we choose to entertain ourselves to death. I know I’m guilty of this. Which is kind of understandable for those of us who don’t kids and thereby don’t feel as invested in the future of this country (gene pool ends here). Hard to imagine not wanting to learn about this life. It’s frickin’ fascinating. Even while acknowledging America cruising toward becoming an Orwellian/Huxleyan totalitarian state (as we’ve seen on the horizon for years).

Hell, my Papa assured me as a teen that a civil war will occur during my lifetime. Was he right? Who knows? Guess we’ll find out.

People like Mike Cernovich are right in some ways too (much as I used to not like the guy, I’ve found his twitter feed worth reading in the last couple of months). Some finessing could be done on the part of Republicans. As with the supreme court nomination — he’s probably right that the Christian woman would’ve been a better (and more qualified) selection for the position. Plus, it would’ve been the politically strategic move if we’re back up and look at how much easier she would’ve been to try to defend in the court of public opinion right about now. Yeah, I get how that can seem like kowtowing to Democrats, but you’re not talking about selecting a Democratic candidate, just one who wouldn’t be treated like a lightning rod for Leftist projections (i.e., a white, pro-life man who attended Yale). Is that fair? Well, that depends. Am I suggesting white men deserve to be overlooked? No, not necessarily, but we are a multiracial society and there undeniably is a lot of resentment at this point in history toward how much power white men have wielded in high positions of this country up until now. That’s just a fact. Women (generally speaking) are pissed off at men (especially white men). Black folks have their grievances. Hispanics have theirs too. As do Native Americans. Legitimate concerns even.

Power’s about to be transferred one way or another. Accusations of racism and sexism are all the rage right now, as we all know. And there are so many balls moving at all times — so much to keep up with, so many battles to fight. I wasn’t keeping up with supreme court picks and wouldn’t even be aware of all this drama if not for becoming a Twitter addict since the summer, so I’m not familiar with the lady in question or how she stacks up against Kavanaugh. No clue. Just sayin’. If she was equally qualified then Trump could’ve saved the public a headache by going with her instead. Instead we’re caught up in a neverending she said/he said contest dating back to 35 years ago, resulting in people who only skim headlines assuming Kavanaugh to be a schmuck. That’s not right and that’s not fair if he’s innocent. He probably didn’t need this headache either.

But when it was Clarence Thomas it was possible to garner a bunch of public support because he was a black conservative man. Identity politics at play, sure, but how is it to be avoided, especially now compared to back then? From what little I know of him he sounds like a good judge, so he deserved to be defended (assuming he was innocent of the allegations made).

That’s the other thing: we’re talking about sexual assault and harassment here. These are most difficult cases to prove typically. So much occurs behind closed doors that others are not and cannot be privy to directly. Even if you talk to someone afterward, it’s still one’s word. Unless the act is caught on camera, what proof really exists (except where great physical violence was done)? These are tricky matters that get me thinking about Orwell’s book Nineteen-Eighty-Four where he describes the sexes divided, behaving hostilely toward one another. What sex they engage in imitates rape because all romantic bonds have long-since been broken. Hence why it was such a big deal that Winston and Julia decided to steal time away together in private and learned to love one another. That was forbidden. They were tortured on account of it. This is what I’m pointing at when harping on about how sex segregation (pushed by “MGTOWs,” Muslims and some feminists alike) being such a bad idea. And yet…

Do you see what I see?

An intentionally antagonistic situation is brewing that is being actively stoked and encouraged by mainstream media and university departments. Race and sex are at the forefront. People are buying into some of it because they’re indoctrinated, but also part of it because some of the rhetoric is true. Or at least it’s not completely wrong. Leaving aside what can’t be done about the past. We’re confronting a bunch of ideologues (with more on the way) who are utterly obsessed with ushering in a more “equal” arrangement. Granted, I understand that much of what we see is coming across as outright discriminatory against white men — true. But here we stand today. People are at least tired of seeing the same old, same old, whether they’re going to wind up with it in terms of politics as usual or not.

Mike Cernovich brought up a good point about how some of these folks view Trump literally as Hitler. Yes, that’s bizarre, especially considering Obama was just as bad, as were the Clintons, as were the Bushes, etc. He’s a continuation on an old theme, though it looks a bit different since he’s from the business world and is best known through tabloids and television shows. But that’s what they’ve convinced themselves of, so they’re going to fight dirty ever chance they get in response. That’s what you do if you honestly think you’re fighting fascism. Are they deluded? I think so, but my reasoning can’t penetrate most of them. Tried plenty in the past and failed.

(As an aside, I’m coming to take Jonathan Haidt’s words in his book The Righteous Mind: Why Good People Are Divided by Politics and Religion more seriously with each passing day. Our values stack up differently. Leftists place more emphasis on the “care/harm” value whereas conservatives embrace a wider and more equally distributed set of values. Plus, we’re driven by our emotions first, reasoning/rationality second.)

It does help to try to understand where one another is coming from, at least generally speaking and so far as we’re able. Are Leftists taking much time to try to comprehend conservatives? No, I’d say more honest investigation actually runs in the other direction. But still. Know Thyself. Then know your enemies.

Not sure if we’re taking this one to the streets, considering how the most vocal activists on the Left tend to live on the West and East coasts, leaving the Midwest and South with the densest populations of conservatives. We’re living apart for the most part, at least in terms of our most radical fringes, though also in regards to our neighborhoods/communities too — so that much of our discourse can’t help but take place online (aside from the years we encounter each other on college campuses or in schools). Hence why censorship online is such incredible BULLSHIT and deserves our attention and push-back. THAT’s a concern we need to focus on, not whether a guy pulled his dick out back in college (who didn’t? Ugh! It’s like fighting air!).

And yet we get swept up like it’s the Macarena every. single. time. We fall for drama so easily. Hard not to get caught up in it. They certainly have our number and know how to distract us well.

Gotta train ourselves to keep our eyes on more important matters. Bitching at one another gets us where? So many act like they’re scared of the System, yet they want to try to use this System to usher in what changes they want to see. So we all fight and squabble and vote and conduct our “2-minutes of hate” ritual on the regular, and what happens? That System we’re all worried about continues growing, continues doing whatever it ultimately wants regardless of what pressure we the people put on it in our fragmented state. Not winning. Just being manipulated and lied to and tossed a carrot every once in a while to occupy us for a spell.

We’re easily played. Truth be told.

What can be done about this? Well, we can try to boil down what matters most and focus there primarily. Freedom of speech, of a free press, and to assemble as we choose are numero uno priorities to me. Because without that, we got nothing. That goes for ALL of us. Across the board. If we can’t even defend that then we might as well hang it up. We’re done as a country and should get ready for a new totalitarian reality since it’s right around the bend. Are things going to get worse before they get better? Oh yes. Hence why it’s so shocking to me how many folks out there don’t seem super worried about any of this and are contentedly going about their lives and watching their ballgames as if nothing is happening. Blows my mind.

That’s just it. Maybe that’s where we are and we’re just struggling to come to terms with it. For nearly two decades we constantly hear people talk about needing to wake others up, and this is as far as we’ve gotten in 2018. I try really hard not to get too down about it, to accept that humans have a penchant for needing to learn every goddamn thing the hard way. C’est la vie. Somehow have to forgive ourselves for this enduring folly. But perhaps this is precisely why empires always fall and always will: the people turn soft and grow more concerned with raiding the public coffer than actually upholding fundamental principles. So, down Rome topples. Maybe it can’t be any other way. Bread and circuses stole the show. Comfort and ease lulled us into such a deep sleep that some would prefer to live in a virtual reality if it meant keeping that dream going. Scientism and transhumanism have taken hold in our collective imaginations, leading people to relax into the dream that technology will eventually set it all right.

Are we a bunch of cowards? Probably. What are we about? Relatively petty shit most often. Are more going to wake up? Likely not until it’s too late. Humans like to dwell in the stream of least resistance. Some will ride that their whole lives if you let them. (Hence why universal basic income doesn’t sound like such a good idea.)

So then what? That’s the million dollar question. Might be in people’s best interest to learn more about ourselves, one another, history (from many angles), and to learn to discern what values ultimately matter most. Freedom of speech is the scaffolding for all the rest. A free people don’t exist without it. For a bunch of misfits who take issue with authority figures, it’d be in our best interest to figure out how best to rule our own selves. As individuals but also in relation with others. We’ve received the government we deserve based on how we’ve chosen to live and what we’ve been willing to tolerate (both historically and present-day). We lost our ways and now are being dragged. Leftists might appear to be winning, or at least waging a hell of a fight, but in the end we’ll all lose. There’s no winning where we as a society are headed.