Shortforbob

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Everything posted by Shortforbob

  1. Shortforbob

    What I learned in prison this week

    see the American cruelty thread...any other country arrest, print and gaol teenagers for playing with a frisbee?
  2. Shortforbob

    dead cat mystery...advice

    Not my month for cats..fortunatly this ones not mine. it's almost 1am, neighbour rang door bell, really upset..theres a beautiful but dead, strange cat on her patio. (I dunno why it;s always me gets these jobs) Anyway, I go over to have a look and deal with it. It couldnt have been dead long still floppy, just lying stretched out, not curled up, in the middle of her patio. some bloody foam, and sputum at the mouth and a very bloody mouth.. that's as far as I look. didn't look like a peaceful end . I'll go around the neighbours tomorrow and ask if anyone's lost one and break the sad news. They've been doing some old wall repairs a few doors down. I need to keep Boo in, my neighbour needs to keep her yappers in. Reason for post. Does this sound like rat poison? Would a cat eating a dead poisoned rat be affected and are the dogs at risk. do I ask around and find out the source?
  3. Shortforbob

    Guitar Player Anarchy

    Girlchild went and got her Dad's old Eppy fixed on Saturday. She did a little guitar tuition when she was about 13...got bored. Sitting upstairs I hear the riff to Don't Fear The Reaper followed by a pretty dam sweet attempt at the intro to Roadhouse Blues.. It's like hearing a ghost She's only been practicing since Saturday Afternoon..Good instrument helps I think.
  4. Shortforbob

    American Cruelty

    This comes out of the prison thread. It's an interesting little essay deserving of reflection In this essay, I want to share with you a tiny theory of what it means to be American. It is up to you to judge, as ever, whether it carries any weight. All that I will say is that when I look around, it explains, a little, what I see. Any theory of being American must explain one salient and striking fact: cruelty. America is the most cruel nation among its peers — even among most poor countries today. It is something like a new Rome. It has little, if any, functioning healthcare, education, transport, media, no safety nets, no stability, security. The middle class is collapsing, and life expectancy is falling.Young people die for a lack of insulin they cannot crowdfund. Elderly middle-class people live and die in their cars. Kids massacre each other in schools — when they’re not self-medicating the pain of it all away. The combination of these pathologies happens nowhere else — not a single place — in the world. Not even Pakistan, Costa Rica, or Rwanda. Hence, the world is aghast daily at the depths of American cruelty — yet somehow, they seem bottomless. (Of course I don’t mean that all Americans are cruel. I just mean that in the same way we say countries have attitude, dispositions, that there’s such a thing as a French or German national attitude or disposition, so, too there is an American one. Nor do I mean America is “the most cruel society in the world”. Can we really ever judge that? But it is uniquely cruel — a kind of special example — in weird, needless, and singular ways.) Let me throw that into relief. Scandinavians are the happiest, longest-lived, and most prosperous people in the world because they do not punish one another constantly — but lift one another up. But Americans do not believe this reality. The underlying sentiment that unites America’s manifold problems is a myth of cruelty. So. Where did the myth of cruelty come from? That is the question before us if we really want to understand America. I’ve wondered since I was a kid, to be honest. I thought, once, it was about capitalism, patriarchy, race, once. But now I think that while those are expressions of it. That something more primary, fundamental, and unique happened. America was a strange, improbable combination of things, singular in history. A Promised Land —but one for the despised. Waves upon waves of them washed up on its shores. First, the Puritans, mocked and loathed in England. Then peasants and farmers and outlaws from across Europe. Then Chinese, Japanese, Latinos, and today, Muslims. These emigrants all tended to share a common trait. They were at the very bottom, the lowest rung, of social and economic heirarchies in their own countries. All of them. That has changed a little recently — but America was founded by and for the despised, loathed, hated. People referred to as trash, nobodies, serfs, exiles, outcasts — who were never given an ounce of respect, dignity, or even belonging, in their societies of origin. Let me make that clearer. We did not see nobles and landed gentry emigrate to America. British Lords and German Counts and Italians Barons. We saw German peasant, Irish villagers, Swedish farmers, the dwellers of Italian slums. People from the very lowest of heirarchies elsewhere, the oppressed and the subjugated, came to this Promised Land. So first the English and French settlers supposed that this New World was theirs (and began a kind of genocide against its natives, of course). But it wasn’t just the natives that they came to hate, for threatening their natural right to this Promised Land. It was the next waves of settlers, too. The English settlers hated the French. The French hated the Germans. They all hated the Irish. The Irish hated the Italians. And so on. That much is historical fact. Do you see the pattern forming yet? This is very abstract, so let me make it concrete. Here came one wave of settlers — English. They dominated their way to the top of a hierarchy, above natives and blacks. Then came a new wave — German. They were punched down too — and began punching down — to bitterly establish themselves in this hierarchy, as high up as they could. Then another wave — Irish. Punched, punching down. All desperately vying for relative dominance among the rest. You see, the crucial fact is that this didn’t happen elsewhere in the world — waves of settlers, all desperately trying to establish themselves above the next, last, most recent, in a hierarchy, all the more so, because they were despised, at the bottom, to begin with. In Europe, Asia, South America, heirarchies were long established — and broken only by revolution. America was the only nation where this constant reconstruction of hierarchy happened to such a degree, over and over again. Hence, the establishment of cruelty as a way of life — how else but to establish one’s self above the next wave of migrants? Each new tribe that came to this Promised Land brought the burden of being despised, subjugated, oppressed, with them. They were finally above someone else in a social hierarchy. They were not at the bottom anymore. But to be above requires somone else to be below. And so there was a constant battle for relative position within a growing hierarchy — hence, dominance, competition, conquest soon became the prized cultural values, norms, and institutional goals. Cruelty as a way of life was born. When we noted that the despised of England hated the newly arrived despised of France hated the newly arrived despised of Germany and so on, not to mentions natives, blacks, and Asians, in an endless vicious circle, we are also saying: America was learning to be cruel, by forever constructing greater heirachies to seize the fruits of a Promised Land. But greater hierarchies require greater cruelty to climb up, too. And the irony is that all this is what the despised came to America to escape. (I’ll add peripheral point. The despised, when coming to a Promised Land, are the least likely, perversely, though we might not immediately think so, to want to share it — because they, at last, have something that they feel is theirs. Today’s servant wants to be tomorrow’s master. Today’s peasant wants to be tomorrow’s landlord. Today’s victim aspires to be tomorrow’s oppressor.) Now. What was really happening here, in more modern terms? People were learning to “punch down”, as we might put it today. Americans were being taught to take out their anger, rage, and fear on those less powerful than them — usually, the most obvious and immediate ones they could find. An Irish mutt bastard moved into the neighbourhood? Get them. No Chinamen allowed. Those Italians? We’ve got to move them out of our city. Intern those Japanese. Punching down began to be institutionalized and normalized. Cruelty was becoming a way of life and a norm. Tribe after tribe of the despised fled to a Promised Land, but each one demanded their position above the last, having never had anything before. People who had been hated and outcast had status and belonging at last — but only by punching down the next wave. So no mechanisms ever really developed to allow the Promised Land to be shared wisely, well, or reasonably. Might became right. Now, American leaders tried to intervene every now and then. FDR’s second bill of rights, JFK’s vision for a fairer society, and so on. But they were not very succesful — because they were fighting a history of cruelty that they did not really understand: one that went to the heart of what it means to be American itself. So they never really said: “Wait. What do we all really have in common, us Americans? We are the despised and mocked of history. Its outcasts and its exiles. This is what unites us! Let us stop punching down, then. Otherwise, what have we really learned? We are only repeating the very history of cruelty that we tried to escape from.” How sad. How funny. Americans came to a Promised Land — but they could not escape themselves. Each new wave, trying to rise above the next, built a world even more cruel than the old one. Punching down, down, down, endlessly. So, today, here we are. Punching down has become a national institution, a norm, and a way of life. School shootings? Can’t ban guns — let the kids have “active shooter drills”. We are punching all the way down to our little five years olds. Life expectancy falling? Can’t have healthcare — let them self-medicate with opioids. We are punching down to the poorest. Education cost a fortune? Too bad, take out debt. We are punching down to our young people. I could give you endless examples. But perhaps you get the point by now. What does it mean to be American? To really “be” — see, feel, think, act American, so much so that you are not self-aware of it, because it is unconscious, reflexive, invisible, this way of “being”? Well, it means what it always has. Punching down, not lifting up. Punching down is hardwired into America by now, thanks to a unique history of settlers — who had never had any — punching the next wave down for relative hierarchical position. An attitude of cruelty was born. And so today cruelty is the point of its institutions, the purpose of its norms, and the linchpin of its perverse idea of virtue, that by punishing people, we can better them. It is all that Americans expect from each other — and give to each other. That is the terrible burden of a Promised Land that history’s despised warred among one another for domination of. The problem is this. A society of people punching one another down must collapse. What else could it do? It cannot rise, can it? If I am punching you down, and I am punching the next person down below me, how can anyone ever lift anyone up? But without lifting one another up, a society cannot grow in quantity or quality of life. This, too, is what happened to Soviet Russia. America has never reckoned with its history of cruelty. Instead, it developed a defensive mythology of being welcoming — even while every new wave of immigrants had to fight, sometimes quite literally little street by street, against the last wave, for a piece of the Promise Land. Like all myths, that one — was a lie that revealed the truth: America was a Promised Land for the huddled masses to roam free — but only if they could fend off the other tribes, by punching them down, endlessly,. A Promised Land is like a Garden of Eden. But who can live in the Garden peacefully but angels? Human beings, flawed, indelicate things, are only meant to be cast out— they are ever in conflict, in tension, hungry and ravenous. And that is never truer than for their most despised — who need to be healed most, or else will ravage their Gardens worst. In this way, a Garden, given to the despised, is a war, waiting to happen. A war against itself. America is at just such a war, and has always been. The name of this war is cruelty. But the end of this war is not victory, but collapse. I don’t say any of this to blame, shame, or judge. But only so that, perhaps, this history of violence can at last be reckoned with. Umair February 2018 https://eand.co/why-is-america-the-worlds-most-uniquely-cruel-society-f67afc5c6b9a
  5. Shortforbob

    dead cat mystery...advice

    You didn't see it...a badly injured cat couldn't get into Kelly's, It would have had to jump 6' gates and walls. unlikely to be where it was if it had been hit by a car but it's possible. We have a lot of common brown rats around here. They live in the creepers and corners of gardens. They never come inside or seem to breed in big numbers. We sometimes see them at night running along a creeper coverd wall. We tend to leave them be...they eat snails Cat shouldn't have been out at night.
  6. Shortforbob

    dead cat mystery...advice

    Well I asked the Laundomat.and the builders.not them. I've let the other neighbours know. The local vet will scan it for it's microchip and call the owners if they can, and take care of the body. Job done.
  7. Shortforbob

    dead cat mystery...advice

    I don't think this would be intentionally aimed at the Cats..This one's no feral cat.. V pretty, well fed and well groomed fluffy coat..It's very unusual to see cats roaming in this area...My first stop will be the Laundromat next door but one, their wall collapsed and they've been having it rebuilt. Then I'll warn the neighbours.
  8. Shortforbob

    dead cat mystery...advice

    Thanks lefty. What to do? I doubt the cat would have eaten the poison direct. our area is pretty dense..poisoned rats..or mice or possums could travel and die within the area of 50 houses or flats. Fuck I hate people that use rat poison in dense urban area's Anyway, I'll deal with it in the morning and keep Boo in until it's sorted.
  9. Shortforbob

    IS coming home illegal?

    When has legality ever mattered if you can get some votes from the kneejerking scofflaws. In this instance our Gov is just as stupid and bullish as yours. Fortunately our high court's not stacked.
  10. Shortforbob

    Drip Drip Drip

    Another Russian mystery just turned up. https://edition.cnn.com/2019/02/21/politics/senate-trump-russia-david-geovanis-intl/index.html Two witnesses who have given evidence to the Senate Intelligence Committee say they were asked about Geovanis' past relationship with the President during interviews last year. The interviews were conducted by staff working for both the Republican and Democratic sides of the committee, according to the sources, who wish to remain anonymous due to the confidential nature of the Senate inquiry. This is the first time that Geovanis' name has been revealed in connection with the various investigations underway into Russian influence on US politics, which include a sweeping new House investigation into Trump's financial interests. The Senate Intelligence Committee's interest into Geovanis indicates its investigation is delving further back into Trump's past in Russia than previously thought. A businessman, three women and Joseph Stalin One of the two witnesses says the committee has a photograph of a younger Geovanis apparently posing in a portrait with three partially clothed women. The portrait, once displayed in a Russian gallery under the title "The Capitalist," depicts the subjects in front of a picture of the former Soviet leader Joseph Stalin. It's not clear whether the portrait is a single photograph or a composite. The witness told CNN that they were shown the photograph during questioning. David Geovanis in a portrait with three unnamed women and a picture of Stalin. CNN has blurred the women's faces to protect their identity. A third witness has alleged in written testimony, seen by CNN, that Geovanis may be valuable in the mystery of whether Russia has material on Trump that could be personally embarrassing to him.
  11. Shortforbob

    Drip Drip Drip

    Surely Muller will write a Summary/conclusion to his report that will avoid naming the innocent parties involved or revealing any details subject to ongoing national security issues. and thus can be released in it's entirety?
  12. Shortforbob

    American Cruelty

    Scandinavian countries have a national disaster every year..its called Winter. There's actually no connection between Cruelty and Generosity... A kind person can be personally quite stingy and a Tyrant very generous...when it suits them.
  13. Shortforbob

    IS coming home illegal?

    If you're a citizen, I don't believe it's legal to deny entry. 1) how does a person get a trial? 2) rendering your cits stateless, contravenes international law We're having the same arguement here. The Law Council of Australia says it's not legal Most of these points would apply elsewhere The prime minister, Scott Morrison, has been forced to defend the legality of changes announced on Thursday with the home affairs minister, Peter Dutton, after the Law Council of Australia said the government had “not made the case” for lowering the bar for stripping terrorists of Australian citizenship. Under the changes the minister can strip a convicted terrorist of Australian citizenship regardless of the severity of the conviction and need only be “reasonably satisfied” that the person would have another citizenship. The president of the Law Council, Morry Bailes, said the measures “challenge key legal principles on which our democracy was founded, and therefore demand very careful consideration”. “The proposed automatic loss of citizenship and subsequent administrative action do not provide sufficient safeguards to accord with the rule of law, the presumption of innocence, the right to a fair trial and the right of appeal,” he said. The power to strip convicted terrorists of Australian citizenship was created under laws that passed parliament with bipartisan support in 2015. An individual can lose citizenship only if they are convicted of a terrorism-related offence with a sentence of six years imprisonment or longer, and have citizenship of another country. Bailes said temporary exclusion orders “may have the effect of rendering an Australian stateless for the duration of the order”. “This order may be inconsistent with Australia’s international obligations under statelessness conventions,” he said. The former independent national security legislation monitor Bret Walker SC told Radio National that some of the changes were “perfectly justifiable” – particularly removing the six-year threshold for terrorism offences. But he warned changing the test to the “reasonable satisfaction” of the minister transferred the power for a “very drastic decision from the court to the executive”. “I would prefer it always be with the court.” Walker said that change would significantly add to the class of people who could be stripped of citizenship but warned it did so by “[admitting] the possibility of error” in circumstances where the minister believed the person had another citizenship, but they did not. Walker said although only “ghastly people” might be rendered stateless, it was a punishment that should not be inflicted on anyone and warned: “Other countries will simply not admit them.” There was “no urgency to introduce laws of this or any other kind – except perhaps in the case of the wicked problem of encrypted messages”, he said. The Coalition’s bill to give law enforcement agencies the power to crack encrypted messages is now before the parliamentary joint committee on intelligence and security. Dutton has urged the committee to return the bill so it can be passed in the last sitting fortnight of parliament. On Friday Morrison told Channel Nine’s Today program that “of course” the government could legally strip people of Australian citizenship. He said if the minister had the “reasonable belief” a convicted terrorist was a citizen of another country – for example if they “were born overseas or inherited it by descent” – he or she could strip the person of their Australian citizenship. Asked what would happen if the country of which a convicted terrorist had citizenship did not accept their return, Morrison said: “If they have got citizenship of that country we will just deport them there.” He did not address what would happen if the minister were incorrect in believing the person had dual citizenship. Morrison brushed off the Law Council’s concerns, claiming “those who oppose [national security] laws always say this”.
  14. Shortforbob

    I still call Australia home

    aphobic..:D This forum needs lightning up a bit.
  15. Shortforbob

    Drip Drip Drip

    Rumours swirling that Muellers close to winding up. So many loose ends. Those sealed indictments for example. https://abcnews.go.com/Politics/dozens-sealed-criminal-indictments-dc-docket-mueller/story?id=59249030 I can't remember ..has Mueller even interviewed Don Jr or Ivanka ..(he spent Hours with Kushner) I'm wondering what Muellers insurance policy is, to ensure this report actually sees the light in an untampered with form once the AG gets it. Friday Tomorrow
  16. Shortforbob

    I still call Australia home

    Well I noticed before I read Bents link..it's kind of bleeding obvious. She doesnt often wear white, but those earrings must be special. https://www.google.com/search?q=julie+bishop&rlz=1C1CHBD_en-gbAU714AU714&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwiRy8bwpMzgAhWZT30KHYb9BUoQ_AUIDygC&biw=1366&bih=625
  17. Shortforbob

    I still call Australia home

    It never rains but it pours Hockey under the pump. https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-02-21/ambassador-joe-hockey-helloworld-andrew-burnes-emails/10834026
  18. Shortforbob

    I still call Australia home

    I wouldn't bet on that. I'm surprised the media hasn't picked up on her choice of attire.
  19. Shortforbob

    I still call Australia home

    Shame, she was about the best they had and a good MP by any measure. She really should have been PM before both Abbot and Turnbull and definitely over Morrison. I'll tip my hat to her even though she's a Lib. So where does that leave the Government now? (I note she's wearing white on her last day in Parliament )
  20. Shortforbob

    What I learned in prison this week

    M, this is the opposite of my plan to deal with solitary confinement. I'm talking today, not pie in the sky. That you'd cite Norway tells me you're not serious about the instant situation. And ma'am I totally get you won't be backing off so let's agree to disagree. Edit: can't fix quote attribution error. Instant solution? You see that's the problem. There are NO instant solutions to established problems. If you execute prisoners there's always another crop coming up. If you face the causes and plan for a better future, that's how you fix the problem.
  21. Shortforbob

    The times they are a changin'

    Oh the irony. There's an iconic photo..and statue in Times Square... It;s sort of sad when realty destroys a legend. https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-02-20/statue-of-ww2-kiss-vandalised-with-me-too-day-after-sailor-died/10830394 "The guy just came over and kissed or grabbed," Ms Friedman told the Library of Congress. "It was just somebody really celebrating, but it wasn't a romantic event." When he was honoured at the Rhode Island State House in 2015, Mr Mendonsa spoke about the kiss. He said Ms Friedman reminded him of nurses who he saw care for wounded sailors on a hospital ship. "I saw what those nurses did that day and now back in Times Square the war ends, a few drinks, so I grabbed the nurse," he said.
  22. Shortforbob

    What I learned in prison this week

    you seem intent on maintaining the status Quo as far as treatment and conditions go. Consider this and ask yourself why you want to kill the irredeemable. Only 94 people in Norway, Breivik being one, are sentenced to "preventative detention" in an extra-high-security prison. This means they can be kept beyond the longest sentence permitted by law - 21 years - if they continue to be considered a risk to society. Norway's prison system does have its critics at home, some of whom think it is too soft. Yet it is hard to argue that it does not work. When criminals in Norway leave prison, they tend to stay out. Norway's recidivism rate of 20% is one of the lowest in the world. By contrast in the UK it's about 45%, while in the US more than 76% of prisoners are re-arrested within five years. Defenders of the Norwegian system are also keen to point out how much money is being saved on successful rehabilitation and reintegration. "Authorities in the US and the UK might want to ask themselves whether all the billions of dollars and pounds they have been spending on locking people up behind tall fences and barbed wire has had any effect at all over the past 150 years," says Tom Eberhardt at the Bastoey prison.
  23. Shortforbob

    What I learned in prison this week

    If they are on death row, They are already condemmed. so what are you talking about? expediting the process for their own "good"? Ah..I see..they have no choice..someone else decides they are better off dead..so stop calling it euthanasia. It's judicial murder. I think the problem you should be addressing is the appaling conditions and administration and prisoner on prisoner violence within your system. Other countries hold irredeemably violent criminals within their prison systems..Oddly, they don't seem to have quite the same problems.. Sure..prisoners sometimes get attacked but somehow even people like anders brievik manage to survive. This is an article about Prison in Norway. https://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-35813470 Now, you want to put forward an argument about how all prisons shouldn't be like this? The Norway philosophy is that prison should be about limiting freedom..nothing else. I'm not stating my position ATM..but I'd like to hear yours
  24. Whether you have a big or small retirement income, sometimes I wonder why most people retire in their home country. It's fine if you have sun, good food and a relaxed environment where you are, but if you live where it's cold in winter and the lifestyle is expensive, there's impatient and sressed out people everywhere , why do we stay put? Think of somewhere you can live cheaply, swim every day, eat fresh food and are safe from all/most our 21st century petty irritations and stress. Would you do it?
  25. Shortforbob

    What I learned in prison this week

    Hey Monkey brain, did you read the article he who used to be blue crab posted? My discussion with BC is not about the conditions or the prisoners, It's about his position that these people should be murdered to save them from their misery...and who heads the death panel.