Saturday, January 31, 2015

Football: match to feature Kitty Purry (video)

Editors, Wisdom Quarterly; Key of Awesome; Katy Perry; Brian Tuohy
OMG, did someone deflate Brady's balls or pump up Katy Perry's whip cream canisters?
Unless we add the word ads, we are not allowed to say "Super Bowl" ads. And songstress "Katy (Catty) Perry" is probably off limits, too, so we refer to her feline best friend, which is what we think her name means anyway, Kitty Purry. Is it okay to say "football" or "Big Game"?

Probably not, so we go with what the world calls the gridiron game when no hands are allowed which, of course, is the "right" way to play it. Because there is only one way to do anything right. And as this game teaches us, "might makes right," so whoever has the most might gets to define what the "right" way is. Just ask the military or local police department.
We hope no one is gambling because, as with national elections, The Fix Is In. Big sporting events are rigged, which means billions in profits when done legally. If wagering is done in private, which is illegal, then all the stats sportsmen love so much will hardly help. And the women who love them, rolling their eyes, would rather keep that money for something else, like buying this book.

A Take of Two Questions (Andrew Kirschner/

"I ordered a slab of bloody muscle, tendons, bone, and veins - and there's a hair in it! (BC)

Friday, January 30, 2015

"GREED is good"? (Family Guy cartoon)

Seth Auberon, Pat Macpherson, CC Liu, Wisdom Quarterly; Natural Born Republican Oliver Stone, Hollywood Liberal Michael Douglas;; Stewie and Brian (Family Guy/FOX TV)
WARNING: Extreme, graphic, animated, gratuitous loan-repayment violence! Rated NC-17!
It says so right on the new American dollar, the trusty greenback, "In Greed We Trust"
Gold dust day gecko (wiki)
In Oliver Stone's "Wall Street," the lead Reptilian (Naga), Gordon Gekko, explains:

"The richest one percent of this country owns half our country's wealth, five trillion dollars. One third of that comes from hard work. [The other] two thirds comes from inheritance, interest on interest accumulating to widows and idiot sons and what I do -- stock and real estate speculation. It's b-llsh-t.

Violent US football, greed, gambling, drinking
"You got 90% of the American public out there with little or no net worth. I create nothing. I own. We make the rules, pal. The news, war, peace, famine, upheaval, the price per paper clip -- we pick that rabbit out of the hat while everybody sits out there wondering how the hell we did it. Now you're not naive enough to think we're living in a democracy, are you, buddy?

It's the free market. And you're a part of it. You've got that killer instinct. Stick around, pal, I've still got a lot to teach you...." "If you need a friend, get a dog.

Titan (asura) dragon Sun Tzu, The Art of War
Bud Fox: "Sun-Tzu: If your enemy is superior, evade him. If angry, irritate him. If equally matched, fight. And if not, split and reevaluate."
Carl Fox: "Money's only something you need in case you don't die tomorrow..."
Gordon Gekko: The point is, ladies and gentlemen, that greed, for lack of a better word, is good.
Carl Fox: "Stop going for the easy buck, and start producing something with your life. Create instead of living off the buying and selling of others."
Lou Mannheim: "Man looks in the abyss; there's nothing staring back at him. At that moment, man finds his character. And that is what keeps him out of the abyss." "The main thing about money, Bud, is that it makes you do things you don't want to do.
Stealing on an industrial scale: Wall Street, NY, home of the brutal U.S. brand of capitalism.
Wake up before you're "poor"!
Gordon Gekko: [At the Teldar Paper stockholder's meeting] "Well, I appreciate the opportunity you're giving me, Mr. Cromwell, as the single largest shareholder in Teldar Paper, to speak. Well, ladies and gentlemen, we're not here to indulge in fantasy but in political and economic reality. America, America has become a second-rate power. Its trade deficit and its fiscal deficit are at nightmare proportions. Now, in the days of the free market, when our country was a top industrial power, there was accountability to the stockholder. 

Destroy us, but who cares? As long as I'm rich.
"The Carnegies, the Mellons, the men that built this great industrial empire, made sure of it because it was their money at stake. Today, management has no stake in the company! All together, these men sitting up here own less than three percent of the company. And where does Mr. Cromwell put his million-dollar salary? Not in Teldar stock; he owns less than one percent. You own the company. That's right, you, the stockholder. And you are all being royally screwed over by these, these bureaucrats, with their luncheons, their hunting and fishing trips, their corporate jets and golden parachutes."

Why feed the needy when you can feed the greedy? "End corporate welfare and maybe we can get people off welfare." Disaster capitalism means getting rich from public coffers.
Cromwell: "This is an outrage! You're out of line, Gekko!"

If too much is not enough, maybe more?
Gordon Gekko: Teldar Paper, Mr. Cromwell, Teldar Paper has 33 different vice presidents each earning over $200,000.00 a year. Now, I have spent the last two months analyzing what all these guys do, and I still can't figure it out. One thing I do know is that our paper company lost $110,000,000.00 last year, and I'll bet that half of that was spent in all the paperwork going back and forth between all these vice presidents. The new law of evolution in corporate America seems to be survival of the unfittest. Well, in my book you either do it right or you get eliminated. In the last seven deals that I've been involved with, there were 2.5 million stockholders who have made a pretax profit of 12 billion dollars. Thank you. I am not a destroyer of companies. I am a liberator of them! The point is, ladies and gentleman, that greed, for lack of a better word, is good.

In Benjamin I trust. It's all about the Bens!
"Greed is right, greed works. Greed clarifies, cuts through, and captures the essence of the evolutionary spirit. Greed in all of its forms -- greed for life, for money, for love, knowledge -- has marked the upward surge of mankind. And greed, you mark my words, will not only save Teldar Paper but that other malfunctioning corporation called the USA. Thank you very much."
Stop runaway capitalism. End the climate crisis that's killing our planet! #FloodWallStreet
"Fox, where the hell are you? I am losing MILLIONS! You got me into this airline, and you sure as hell better get me out or the only job you'll ever have on the Street is SWEEPING it! You hear me, Fox?"
Bud Fox: "You once told me, don't get emotional about stock. Don't! The bid is 16.5 and going down. As your broker, I advise you to take it."
Gordon Gekko: "Yeah. Well you TAKE IT! [shouting] right in the -ss, you f--king sc-mb-g c-cks-ck-r!"
Bud Fox: "It's two minutes to closing, Gordon. What do you want to do? Decide."
Gordon Gekko: [calming down] "Dump it." [Later, meeting alone together in Central Park] "Hiya, Buddy."
Bud Fox: [Nods as the both walk up to face one another] "Gordon."
Occupy Wall Street, Charlie Brown!
Gordon Gekko: [With a smirk on his face] "Sand bagged me on Bluestar, huh? I guess you think you taught the teacher a lesson that the tail can wag the dog, huh? Well, let me clue you in, pal. The ice is melting right underneath your feet." [Punches Bud and grabs him by the coattails] "Did you think you could've gotten this far this fast with anyone else, huh? That you'd be out there d-cking someone like Darien? No.

"I am the 1%." What are you?
"You'd still be cold-calling widows and dentists trying to sell them 20 shares of some dog sh-t stock. I took you in [hits him again] a NOBODY! [hits him again] I opened the doors for you! Showed you how the system works! The value of information! How to get it! Fulham Oil! Brant Resources! Geodynamics! And this is how you f-cking pay me back, you COCKROACH? [He hits him once again and Bud falls to the ground]. I GAVE you Darien. I GAVE you your manhood. I gave you EVERYTHING!"

Where's my money?
[He calms down then takes out his handkerchief and throws it to Bud to clean off the blood the way Stewie once threw a towel at Brian after beating and torturing him -- in the video above -- over a late loan payment saying, "Here, clean yourself off."]
Gordon Gekko: "You could've been one of the great ones, Buddy. I looked at you and saw myself. Why?"

(Showtime) Formerly Republican Oliver Stone goes good:  "Untold History of the United States," Episode 3, The Bomb

Scarcity? Here's my share. Don't touch it or I'll kill you! What did you get for yourself?

Greed and the 6 Causes of Karma (sutra)

Seth Auberon, Dhr. Seven, Pat Macpherson, CC Liu (eds.), Wisdom Quarterly, Nidana Sutra (AN 3.33) based on Ven. Thanissaro/Geoffrey DeGraff (trans.)
Red, white, and gold Thai Buddha statues (Piyawit Kampput/p_kampput/FIVE S.P./flickr)
What did so many gain from non-greed?
"Meditators, there are three causes (motivations) for actions (karma). What are the three?
  1. Greed (craving, lust) is a cause, a motivation for actions.
  2. Aversion (manifesting as hate or fear) is a cause, a motivation for actions.
  3. Delusion (wrong view, ignorance) is a cause, a motivation for actions.
"Any action performed motivated by greed -- born of greed, caused by greed, originating from greed, wherever one rearises (is reborn), there that karma (action) will ripen. Where that action ripens, there one will experience its fruit, either in this life that has arisen due to karma or further along in future lives.
"Any action performed motivated by aversion... Any action performed by delusion..."
A different dream of green (long-long/flickr)
"Just as when seeds are unbroken, unspoiled, able to sprout, undamaged by wind and heat, capable of growing, well planted, buried in well prepared soil, and the devas of the rain offer streams of rain, those seeds come to growth, increase, and abundance. In the same way, any karma performed with greed as motivation... performed with aversion as motivation... performed with delusion as motivation -- born of delusion, caused by delusion, originating from delusion, wherever one rearises, there that action will ripen.

"Where that action ripens, there one will experience its fruit, either in this life that has arisen due to (past) karma or further along in future lives. These are three causes that motivate actions.
"Now, there are three [other] causes, three [other] motivations for actions. What are the three?
  • 4. Non-greed is a cause, a motivation of actions.
  • 5. Non-aversion...
  • 6. Non-delusion...
  • Peaces lies within not without.
    [Here these six terms or "roots" -- lobha, dosa, moha, and a-lobha, a-dosa, a-moha -- must be understood as categories. Greed (lobha, whether manifesting as craving, tanha, or lust, raga) is a term with a wide range. It is so wide that it can encompass a positive quality like chanda, will, wish, desire, or enthusiasm for a beneficial goal. But it will be negative if the intention is tainted by greed, aversion, or delusion, something done or aspired to for selfish, harmful, aggrandizing reasons like clinging, grasping, or hoarding. Craving is desperately trying to appease a thirst or hunger that will not and cannot be appeased by what it is being fed, e.g., drugs, saltwater, gasoline, etc. Note that often even getting what one wants does not satisfy greed. We simply want more or want the same experience again and again because underneath what we are really seeking is some kind of fulfillment through it. But it is not possible, so rather than letting go of the greed, we instead crave, crave more, and die craving...only to be reborn where in ignorance of our former existences we continue our "endless wandering on" through samsara in search of sensual delights, eternal life, and/or annihilation, so tedious and painful is the process of never finding satisfaction or fulfillment in conditional things.]
  • See The Roots of Good and Evil by Ven. Nyanaponika
"Any action performed with non-greed as motivation -- born of non-greed, caused by non-greed, originating from non-greed, when greed is gone, that action is abandoned, its uprooted, made barren like a palmyra stump [which when lopped off at the top no longer grows], deprived of the conditions of development, not destined for future arising.

Overwhelming kindness, the Buddha at Sukhothai (Ted Richardson Phuket lawyer/flickr)
"Any action performed with non-aversion...Any action performed with non-delusion... It is just as when seeds are unbroken, able to sprout, unspoiled, undamaged by wind and heat, capable of growing, well planted, buried in well prepared soil, and a person reduces them with fire to fine ashes.

"Having reduced them to fine ashes, one would winnow them away in a good wind or wash them away in a swiftly flowing stream. Those [bad] seeds would thereby be destroyed at the source, made barren like a palmyra stump, deprived of the conditions of development, not destined for future arising.
"In the same way, any action performed with non-greed...performed with non-aversion...performed with non-delusion -- born of non-delusion, caused by non-delusion, originating from non-delusion, when delusion is gone, that karma is abandoned, uprooted, made like a palmyra stump, deprived of the conditions of development, not destined for future arising.
"These, meditators, are three causes for the origination of karma."
A person who does not know, that person's actions -- born of greed, born of aversion, born of delusion, whether many or few -- are experienced right here. For no other ground [field where they could sprout, take root, and bear their results] is found. 
  • According to the Commentary, "right here" means within the stream [or string] of becoming, of rebirths, of lives (attabhava), i.e., the chain of otherwise endless rebirths. "No other ground is found" means that the fruit of the action is not experienced [because there is no longer any field in which the results of those actions, that karma, to be experienced. The end of rebirth means the end of all unsatisfactory, impermanent, impersonal experience.]
So a meditator, knowing, sheds greed, aversion, and delusion. By giving rise to clear knowledge, one sheds all bad destinations.
  • The Commentary notes that this verse refers to the attainment of full enlightenment (arhatship) and that an arhat -- by realizing nirvana -- sheds not only unfulfilling/unsatisfying good destinations, but also all bad, painful, and miserable destinations.
The word "sheds" acts as a "lamp" in this closing verse -- it appears only once, but functions in two phrases, as rendered here in translation. Nirvana is sometimes explained as "blowing out" or quenching or cooling as a lamp/candle no longer fed by fuel. On the use of the lamp as a literary figure of speech in ancient India and Indo-Scythia, see the Introduction to Dhammapada: A Translation.
But I thought all "desire" was bad?
What is the second of the Four Noble Truths?
The real cause of suffering (disappointment) is not desire (craving or tanha), as is often said in Buddhism. Desire is just one of the causes. More fundamental is ignorance (avijja). The reason the Buddha points at craving/desire as the cause of suffering is because all things are "dependently originated." That is to say, everything arises in dependence on causes and conditions. No "thing" is caused by one cause; every "thing" has many causes. What causes suffering? It is caused by 12 things, 12 links in a causal change, only one of which is desire/craving. The Buddha points to it (and elevates it to one of the Four Noble Truths) because it is the weak link, something we can do something about right here and right now. The result will be the undoing of this entire dependently originated "mass of suffering." Ignorance is the first thing named in the 12 causal links. It cannot be directly remedied; it is only uprooted by enlightenment (bodhi). But by looking mindfully and with a concentrated mind/heart, we can directly see the true nature of existence -- that it is radically impermanent, unsatisfactory and incapable of satisfying, and ultimately impersonal. When the mind gets a direct glimpse of these three characteristics, it pulls backs, lets go, sees things as they truly are. And that can serve as the basis of enlightenment, liberation, and freedom. The Truth really does set one free, but we will never look at it (or correctly interpret what we  see) due to the fact that we desire to keep the fantasy/illusion going thinking the Truth would be too painful. The fantasy is painful. The Truth is liberating! 

Oh, MOTHER! (comedy)

Eds., Wisdom Quarterly; Maria Bamford, Marilyn Bamford, Alix Spiegel (Invisibilia,

Impersonating Her Mom, Comedian Grows Closer To Her
Alix SpiegelAll Things Considered
Like mother like daughter (Riot Fest, L.A.)
Think of human relationships as entanglements. How do they bind us; how do they reveal who we really are? In this episode of Invisibilia, NPR's new show about human behavior, we wanted to explore entanglements: the invisible ways we're entangled with each other. So we called a comedian. I'm a fan of Maria Bamford, who has done impressions of her mother throughout her career:
Host Alix Spiegel
"My mom told me before I went to my first girl-boy party in the eighth grade: 'Okay, remember what we talked about -- gonorrhea, syphilis, Herpes 1, 2. Watch the cold sores! Date rape is a lot more common than people think! You look so gorgeous! Oh, Jenny's mom's here to pick you up. Well, have a good time!'"
Sometimes the version of her mom she plays is just funny, because the mom can be so charmingly upbeat about the horrors of the world that it's hilarious. But sometimes it feels like it's about elements in their relationship that have a darker side. Like in this YouTube bit:
"'Sweetie, you taking a shower? Can I just get in there a little bit and just show you something? Oh, I didn't know you were naked. Oh sweetie -- listen -- if you want to get breast implants we will support you. Not financially -- but emotionally.'" More + AUDIO
We are here to overtake your planet through its mass media, our charm offensive.
Stand-up Comedy and Mental Illness: Conversation with Bamford
David Haglund
Slate's Brow Beat blog
Over the last several years Maria Bamford has become one of the most acclaimed and original stand-up comics in the country. Along with Patton Oswalt, Zach Galifianakis, and Brian Posehn, Bamford was part of the Comedians of Comedy tour; she’s also released three solo albums and done two Comedy Central specials. Bamford’s voice (or rather, voices) can be heard regularly on Nickelodeon, Adult Swim, PBS, and elsewhere.
Voices of NPR: couple Edwards-Johnston
But her signature work may be The Maria Bamford Show, a brilliant Web series from 2009 that was screened at the Museum of Art + Design in New York. The premise of the series was that Bamford had had a nervous breakdown on stage and ended up back in Minnesota living with her parents. Bamford played every role in the series: her mother, father, sister, coworkers, and old high school acquaintances. More
The voice of National Public Radio (NPR)
No matter how you take your public radio -- a downloaded TED Radio Hour podcast or a Morning Edition show broadcast on your member station -- there's one voice familiar to all NPR listeners. That's the NPR announcer, who voices credit to the member stations, corporations and institutions that generously support NPR and public radio.

NPR Announcer Sabrina Farhi
Sabrina Farhi (D.R. Wolcheck/C. Mueller)
Come November, listeners will hear a new voice saying things such as "Support for NPR comes from..." and "This [pause] is NPR" (our personal favorite). Sabrina Farhi is joining us in Washington, D.C., as the NPR announcer alongside the iconic Frank Tavares, who has voiced NPR's funding credits for more than three decades. You'll get to know her quickly once her voice comes on the air in November.

Windsor Johnston, Bob Edwards' wife
Ed Sullivan: "I'm not as serious as I sound"? She doesn't sound serious at all and, apparently, neither is NPR in this case. After the brilliant articles posted on this site about professional voice artists, the management here has decided to go the other direction. It's hard enough to endure the aural assault from local news channels of untrained, immature types, who over-pronounce vowels, swallow compound consonants, and drops the end of every sentence into a tired gravel [called vocal fry]. But I'm sure teenage girls will love her. NPR has given me yet another reason to change the channel.

(Maria Bamford) "Dropout"

Amazing religious diversity of the Middle East

Seth Auberon, Sheldon S., Pat Macpherson, CC Liu, Wisdom Quarterly; Host Mitch Jeserich,, Los Angeles, Jan. 29, 2015 (from L&P,, Berkeley)
Who knew? I had no idea! We're taught Arab Muslims fighting Zionist Jews and that's all.
Heirs to the Kingdom: Journeys Into the Disappearing Religions of the Middle East
Other Religions of the Middle East
Despite its reputation for religious intolerance, the geopolitical Middle East has long sheltered many distinctive and strange Christian-like faiths beyond Islam:
One religion regards the Greek prophets (like Pythagoras) as incarnations of God, another reveres the angel Lucifer in the form of a peacock, and yet another believes that their followers are reincarnated beings who have existed in various forms for thousands of years [just as Buddhism, Hinduism, Jainism, Sikhism still teach and as Christianity used to teach].
These religions represent the last vestiges of the magnificent civilizations in ancient history: Persia, Babylon, Egypt in the time of the Pharaohs [and even going back to the first known civilization in Sumer or Sumeria]. Their followers have learned how to survive foreign attacks and the perils of assimilation [with Islam, Christianity, or Judaism]. But today, with the Middle East in turmoil, they face greater challenges than ever before.

In Heirs to Forgotten Kingdoms, former diplomat Gerard Russell ventures to the distant, nearly impassable regions where these mysterious religions still cling to survival. He lives alongside the
  • Mandaeans and Ezidis (Yazidis) of Iraq
  • Zoroastrians of Iran
  • Copts of Egypt, and others. 
Who knew, Russell Brand?
He learns their histories, participates in their secret rituals, and comes to understand the current threats to their long surviving communities. Historically a tolerant faith, Islam has, since the early 20th century, witnessed the rise of militant, extremist sects (such as the CIA-funded Saudi Arabian aberration known as Wahhabism).
This development, along with the rippling effects of Western invasion, now pose existential threats to these minority faiths. And as more and more of their youth flee to the capitalist West in search of dreams of greater personal freedoms and money making prospects, these religions face the dire possibility of complete extinction after surviving against all odds.

Drawing on his extensive travels and archival research, Russell provides an essential record of the past, present, and perilous future of these remarkable religions. More

U.S. Slavery and Capitalism
Michael Slate, Michael Slate Show, (Pacifica Los Angeles, Jan. 30, 2015)
Cornell Univ. Prof. Edward E. Baptist is the author of The Half Has Never Been Told: Slavery and the Making of American Capitalism.

Few realize that bankers financed the purchase of expensive slaves for the picking of cotton for sale on the world market. This prompted the dehumanizing treatment of African-Americans chattel (property) slaves by racist European Christians living in the relatively new USA still expanding west and wiping out the indigenous Native Americans. LISTEN: (Jan. 30, 2015, 10:00 am,

Kissinger nearly arrested for war crimes (video)

Ashley Wells, CC Liu, Pat Macpherson, Wisdom Quarterly; Medea Benjamin (; Amy Goodman (, Jan. 30, 2015
Medea Benjamin: Why disrupt Obama?
Activists from the pro-peace group CODEPINK attempted to perform a citizen’s arrest on former U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger when he testified before barbaric Senator McCain on "global security challenges" at a Senate Armed Services Committee meeting on Thursday.

USA's secret war on Buddhist Laos
Unindicted war criminal Kissinger served as secretary of state and national security adviser during the U.S. War on Vietnam under Republican presidents Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford. Arizona Republican Sen. John McCain lashed out at the protesters -- threatening them with false arrest and lashing out at them "shut up" and calling them "low-life scum" -- and called on the Capitol Hill Police to remove them. More