Saturday, October 06, 2007

i want to take a moment to preach here. a moment in defense of something that has been relegated to obscurity; truth. as in telling the truth. from the interpersonal or private level to the biggest and most public level i am so tired of listening to people lie or dealing with folks that want to be lied to. on the personal level, this is epidemic in my native psycho-astrological-channeler-guru-hooey california, people that would rather hear nice news than the actual news of their life. my wife has shown me the difference between time spent telling someone what they want to hear and time spent telling someone the truth. the difference is so vast that i couldnt even begin to list differences here. the other night, i told her that i consider my ability to hear uncomfortable truths about myself to be an achievement in my life. i am a sensitive person. criticism hurt my feelings so i would react emotionally to it. i decided some years ago that i wanted to get better at hearing criticism. i made a conscious decision to do so because i knew that sometimes the truth fucking hurts and you have to accomodate yourself to it, in order for it to stop hurting long enough, to be able to decide what to do about it.

on a bigger level, and here one cant help but think of our bonnie king george II, i am tired of having to listen to folks who talk about 'values' all the time while also talking about not being able to tell the truth because it emboldens the terrorists or it is unsupportive of the troops. the latter being a particular peeve of mine. i think if someone is in the trenches, dealing with life and death on a daily basis, they are smack dab in the middle of some of the ugliest truth possible. they do not need to be coddled and told fairy tales like children, that is both condescending and cynical. give them the respect they deserve. they can handle the truth. sometimes the truth fucking hurts and you have to accomodate yourself to it, in order for it to stop hurting long enough, to be better able to decide what to do about it.

if brown did a bad job heading fema during the new orleans disaster, he doesnt need an 'attaboy', he doesnt need his buddy george telling him "nice job brownie". he needs a figuritive kick in the ass because he is fucking up and folks are dying. heavy hangs the head that wears the crown. if he cant do his job without hearing, and more importantly being able to learn from, criticism then he doesnt belong in that job. i will say it again for emphasis, sometimes the truth fucking hurts and you have to accomodate yourself to it, in order for it to stop hurting long enough, to be better able to decide what to do about it. period. end of sermon. have a nice day.

31 comments:

George D said...

Hallelujah!!!

Great Post!

I got a question, youve probably been asked this but i dont know.

No wi dont live in america i live in america jr, but the elections still affect me and everyone else on earth too.

Would it be nice to see an Independent be president?

Tanya said...

funny that you bring this up as we were watching "Sophie Scholl" today (have you seen this? don't know that it's interesting to most. it was a German film day.) It's based on the true story of a student involved with the White Rose resistance in Germany. I remarked to my patient guy ,during the trial scene, that there were some scary resemblances to what is happening now. ie being denounced for so called demoralization of troops.
best regards,
Tanya

Anonymous said...

The propoganda runs deep. Just prior to this most recent occupations invasion, the military showed Shakes Henry V to their pilots.

Truly amazing. Hal himself had the most dubious motives with his invasion, went undercover to determine the depths of his ranks resolve/discontent, and masqeraded as a "regular joe" to dupe them into a hysterical frenzy. Many critics and myself included feel this is a clear anti war play.

I can't give the fuckwit credit for breaking down the play, I think he was just hiding behind the notion of superiority that the name Shakespeare evokes...probably modeling after the Olivier version made for the British back in WW2. Backward thinking was addressed here recently and now the issue of lies add up to evil with this criminal. When I really think about it, after the fury, despair sets in. Bad stuff, this lying is.

Be well,

SR

.kelly said...

call me crazy, but the one thing that may help us go to a more diverse america during elections could be eliminating the parties.

think about it. most candidates try and play to their party and to who votes dem or neo-con. if we eliminate parties, people could speak their mind more, and we'd have a more diverse field

matt volpe said...

Eric,
I can really relate to what your saying about the truth hurting and the like. On a personal level, I've learned a plethora of truths about myself from my marriage. Some things good, other things bad. I have learned as I've gotten more mature to tolerate constructive criticism a lot better. I think one could go insane if they didn't embrace criticism to perhaps improve or at least be aware of their own faults. I also feel this way in a creative aspect, as with an artist, if one can bear some good criticism. it'll only make them stronger in their craft. Great post, thanks for the very enlightening read. Best, Matt

C. Brian said...

EA,

Now there's some fire in that post of yours! I dig. :) Great line re: "adapting" to truth (reality).

You mentioned being a sensitive person. Methinks artists, writers, musicians, actors are . . . a cliche observation/stereotype, I know. A double-edged knife. Blessing and a curse.

How do you handle criticism re: your creative output?

My reason for asking: the subjectivity element to assessing a song, novel, film, etc.

john said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
john said...

I know this is going to sound horrible but...I have a tough time feeling any sympathy for someone who doesn't have the good sense to make sure there home is at or above water level. I know you all are going to rip me for this but the truth is, New Orleans was and for that matter still is below sea level so in theory they are already underwater. Didi anybody think about that truth?

Frank said...

.kelly,

While I do think it's interesting to ponder a partyless political landscape, I just can't get my head around how that might go. Seems like an invitation to have an inordinate amount of candidates, all with a particular setg of beliefs. This sounds perfect in theory, but it'll shake out to the current choice of two or three soon enough.

Not sure if this will make sense, but let's say we have 10 candidates, each of varying degrees of liberal/conservative positions and so on. Obviously one or two or three will have more support than some of the others. These two or three will likely try to play to some of their nearer competitors supporters by tweaking the message and picking up votes. Like a snowball rolling down a hill. And this snowballing will continue until we've got two candidates, which is pretty much where we are now.

The system is far from perfect. Hell, any system that could result in the current administration has to be flawed in a horrible way. I think something fundamental would have to change on the side of the governed before the government could change in any significant, positive way.

Last time out, I couldn't see the Red side as anything other than bloodthirsty and greedy and I couldn't understand how people could support that. Humans.

I don't think it's Bush's fault, though, that Rove knows how to give people what they want.

As sad as that is.

Anonymous said...

Very poignant dialogue. Not certain this day and age if "truth" exists, or if it ever really did. There's a certain level of demystification transpiring in this nation that truly saddens the heart; we my friend are seeing "Rome burn" so methodically, so deeply, that we must pray that we ourselves do not get scorched.
I think that the fundamental problem is not really truth, but, simply owning up to one's own actions and mistakes, and likewise a personal self-evaluated value system other than the new state religion of Consumerism.

What was it Jr. told the people after 9/11, "keep shopping!"

Think it was 'ole Bull Lee who stated he could never be a politician because he was incapable of telling a lie. So, unfortunately, it kind of goes with the territory. America is so corrupt. Only difference between the Kenndey's and Capone's is that the Kennedy's filed taxes. Think about it.
Problem is with criticism or any type of correspondence for that matter is that you never truly know another's motives or experiences, therefore, all criticism is for lack of a better term, skewed. Most criticism is based on, like everything in this nation, vested interest.

eric, did you get any info from the History Channel?

Vol.

JM said...

Right on.

That's the system, though. It has been, since Athens. It's dictatorship, dude. Dictatorship elected by around 48% of the Americans. Fucking sick.

Govinda Jaya Jaya
JM

David said...

Wise fools know that they can only live their own lives and that at the end of the day no one can make people choose something they don't buy into. Morons change, yes, but usually not as a result of being commanded to change by the enlightened.

From my observation, people can only TRULY change under some combination of the following two conditions: 1)after taking a few painful lumps of their own making, or 2)after getting a little undeserved love.

Somehow, this fool has learned that barking orders to knuckleheads takes time that could be spent rowing down the stream, gently and merrily.

Your music definitely changed - and probably saved - my life when I was going through a rough time (of my own making) in the early '90s. Passion breeds passion breeds passion... The real world-changers might not be the rebels, but the lovers.

Ocean size and big respect, amigo.

rob said...

i was reading this post yday and got about halfway through... drifted off into thought.. i dont remember reading the rest...which happens often with eric's insightful posts. so i'm back today reading the rest.

on the more personal level, perhaps the reason we hide truths about ourselves is the ego simply doesn't like to hear it!

or maybe its our fears of others seeing those truths and as a result, we feel at a disadvantage? mistrust. and as with the public arena, hiding or bending the truth is thus to one's political advantage.

probably all too obvious but
what i think is interesting is what we can take from a creative situation (designing a book cover, writing a song etc) and inspire our personal interactions because, at its best, the creative process demands the elimination of political motivations, ego and any other hurdles.

is this because there is a greater good here? - the art being produced in this case. does that imply the reason we dont like to face uncomfortable truths about ourselves an issue of self belief?

just trying to find out why here... but i think i've totally just gone off on a tangent. again!

erm... eric like totally rules and stuff :)

Modern Party said...

Listen to or read Eisenhower's farewell speech, it speaks volumes!

It's right up the alley of what EA is talking about, and wrote music about for the last 20 years. And keep it coming EA, we love ya out here on the east coast!

Anonymous said...

David Wrote, "The real world-changers might not be the rebels, but the lovers."

I always thought that the rebels and the lovers were one in the same. Marley, Hendrix, Dylan, Einstein, MLK, Rod Serling, Vonnegut, Steinbeck; all took their lumps for being rebels though have left us with an enourmous inrease in our Gross Inernational Joy. They were lovers and world changers.

If you are a lover you are a world changer.
David I also like what you wrote about passion breeds passion. We are a contagious species for sure.

Nice post Eric.

Until I see footage of a plane hitting the pentagon, I consider us to be living under an undefined coup of sorts. Not to mention the stonewalling going on over the internal emails of the executive branch. 5 million missing emails? Give me a break. Is this freedom?

Anonymous said...

forgot to sign off on the above comment. Oops,

Respect and Kindness,
Mike

-ea. said...

george d and .kelly- i would really like to see real variety of choice in our politics. trouble is that whenever a candidate does represent something different, something other than republican or dem, then whatever party that person most resembles gets its vote split and the opposing party wins. therefore neither party wants to let this happen. i think it could happen. if someone came along with enough personal charisma, political chops, and piles of money he/she might be able to do it. i think once its done, assuming the presidency then goes well, the spell might be broken and the possibility of diversity might continue. i think there is hope. the possibility of our first viable female and black presidential candidates is a symptom of that hope. americans seem to be getting sick enough of the political status quo to actually open our minds a bit.

-ea. said...

c. brian- when considering someones criticism of my work, i do consider the source firstly. i ask myself, "does this person have creative critical insights, that i respect, into other peoples work"; for example. i also consider how the feedback affects me. if it bothers me, and more importantly, continues to bother me, then it usually means that the criticism speaks to a weakness in my work that i am aware of, but that im not dealing with. if it is something i have confidence in, then i will generally dismiss it as a difference of opinion.

-ea. said...

john- i often have a similar thought as i sit in the ocean waiting for waves. i am always struck by the fact that we put million dollar homes at the very edge of an ocean as vast as the pacific and rely on that enormous body of water not to vary more than a few feet.

that being said, you arent the first to say this about new orleans. i dont think the story is ever that simple. i am always suspicious of anything i come up with that is a simple answer to a complex set of circumstances. can we really ask entire communities of dirt poor people, for example, to be sure to move to high enough ground? who would buy their underwater homes? should the entire country of holland move because they are all basically underwater too? where would they move to?

-ea. said...

vol- "religion of consumerism" made me think of an interesting insight i heard robert reich make on npr yesterday. he said that americans, given our freedoms, had become very good consumers of free market capitalism but we havent developed equally as democratic citizens. we want cheap products. period. no matter the cost to foreign child labor, the environment etc. we are missing the middle ground.

i actually havent chased after the history channel thing. i dont know if it is a hill im willing to die on. thanks for the help though.

-ea. said...

modern party- are you talking about the 'military industrial complex' speech? he predicted our current blackwater/dyncorp problems. amazing that it came from him. not exactly a dove. wasnt that the first time the phrase 'military industrial complex' was used?

Anonymous said...

Eric, your welcome. well, if the "program" comes on I'll send you a note so that you can see it, or well hear it for yourself.
I failed to listen to Reich; had a black german shepherd named Reich. Interestingly enough I caught myself in an ocd moment, going through my house yeaterday and realized basically my home is china built, furnished, decorated, etc.. I got China in my head, and China in my bed, man.
The entire purpose of a corporation run government, a governemnt ran on capitalism, I have been told is ultimately to insure that the people of that state have jobs and ultimately do not have to lean on the governemnt for support and to supply means. Yet, due to industry, or lack thereof, in the U.S. it is now counter productive to our culture to be a consumer based society. Try to find a piece of clothing not foreign made, it's almost impossible. The only real viable product that is now american is entertainment, and even that has dwindled considerbaly.

I do have to disagree with Reich however, having lived in Capetown, he has no real idea what a "free market" is. Have a good one.

Vol

Oh, yeah, possibly moving out west, any reccomnedations? Haven't yet decided on CA or NM.

Anonymous said...

What about those that live in/around Naples?

New Orleans actually made a lot of sense during colonialzation. It's an excellent port site with the gulf and straight into the mouth of the Mississippi (jesus, is that spelled correctly?) right in the heart of the country. Mississippi goes all the way up into Canada. Made perfect sense, just like the real reason why Jerusalem was and has been such an important place. Religion is just the cover, truth is, it was the largest trading post connecting east and west (why do you guys think the Catholic Church wanted it so bad?). If you didn't control trade through Jerusalem you had to take one of the northern routes (took much longer) around up to the mediterranean. In Medieval times, the "people" that controlled that area, controlled trade, hence, obtained wealth, hence power.

same was true with New Orleans, tons of jobs, tons of opportunity.

Hell, little known fact that Samuel clemens aka Mark Twain was into drug running along the Mississippi. Cocaine distribution, no less. Apparently, it was not as lucrative as he thought and hence had a good backdrop for his novels.

every place has it's positives and negatives (i.e. fault lines, hurricanes, tornadoes, floods, etc.) you really can't hide from nature. No matter how much "man" and his "religion" attempts to convince us.

Vol, again, in wilmington-a dozen hurricanes (but i dont live on the beach).

Anonymous said...

Vol, I'm interested in the drug running of MT. Cocaine wasn't illegal at the time, in fact prohibition movements revolved around alcohol during the the mid to late 19th century. All I know about cocaine was that it was a staple in elixers of the time, such as Martinis' wine, which it was widely reported that Twain purchased voluminously for Grant so that he could finish his memoirs while holding on to life by dental floss. He also made a fortune as a lecturer...amoung his good work there was a stint as the head of the Anti Imperialist Leauge. What biographers sould I look for?

Great parallels on the similariries of New Orleans and utility of the middle eastern rivers in antiquity. I recently have done some reading on the first civilizations of the middle east and just west into Greece. I like this perspective.

Be well,

SR

Anonymous said...

SR, actually I think it was both morphine and cocaine. Fairly common "drugs" at the time, and you are correct, it was not illegal and therefore, not necessarily "drug running" (a play of words on my part) but, he initially was interested in distributing these "substances" along the Mississippi as they were prevalent in America at the time. a lot of businessmen performed this task, and I imagine if I lived there at that time I would have been interested as well. Most still fail to realize that Coca-cola contained cocaine, just another example of its prevalence.
Unfortunately, my memory fails where exactly I discovered this nugget of info concerning Twain, but, it is out there (I'll try to find it). Are you doing any particular research on him or is it just personal curiosity?
Yes, the "cradle of civilization" is very interesting. Humankind has always established itself around water, and the mesopatamia area was ideal. Twain, claimed that whiskey was for drinking but water was worth fighting for, or something to that effect.
Like Eric, I share similar interests in history particularly Egyptian, Babylonian, Greek and Roman. Currently, I'm trying to gain a better grasp of celtic mythology/history for personal reasons. -vol

Anonymous said...

Thanks Vol, for real. Yes, I named my son Samuel with MT in mind (amoung other fine Samuels, including, of course, my son). I think MT did for storytelling in the US what Whitman did for poetry...that is, create the genres (that every bit maintained the standard of the Western European standard)repsectively for American Literature. And I am thankful that they did with their keen insights, brutal honesty, and groundbreaking styles.

I did some cursory research and came up with cocaine in some academic papers titles, but got no further. I was just surprised that this tidbit went under my radar for so long. Always more to learn.

Very cool on the history. I have recently found myself immersed in academia a great deal and that path has had some history and geology work involved with it. Both have been facinating...again.

Be well,

SR

Anonymous said...

if you'd check out new orleans, you'd see why it's worth saving. mississippi gulf coast too.

Anonymous said...

oh and yes, i was effected by katrina, as was everybody i know and love. we lost our homes or our shirt in the results of the aftermath (insurance MIScommunication) but the area has it's die-hard fans and there is so much history and wonderful people there that it will be rebuilt. thing is nobody wants to be in charge of saying, limit the cost on rent during the rebuild. give alternatives to building 'stick houses' with use of more stable materials. get insurances classes started in high school so that kids can become more aware of the business that is living. schools and community centers can be a safe haven and a feel good place for children to sort thru the bullshit. instead many are still in trailers still trying to stay out of harms way while their parent's figure out all the red tape BS they need to even get a building permit.

so i moved to mexico. fuck it.
-mello

Anonymous said...

SR-

Interesting. for whatever reason I have a new found interest in Archeology. I dunno, seems like a real synthesis of so many disciplines. Perhaps one day. Sure would like to discover something...something sacred, even if it takes a lifetime.

Even though I do appreciate his genius, I'm not an avid reader of Twain. Perhaps I should revisit him. I do believe that he truly possessed an interesting perspective and was one of those exceptionally rare types who have the ability to both recognize minute specifics as well as the larger picture. Western society really kind of neglects the latter concerning education, unfortunately.
Watched "Leno" tonight, first time in forever. PJ was on, what a powerful performance.

Vol

Anonymous said...

I really appreciate the likes of Twain and Swift. Both were truly gifted in their styles (it's a shame Swift's work has been reduced to what amounts to smart cartoons...SO much there). For better or worse, the humor is cutting...written to harm the evils that exist. I often think Bill Hicks would have enjoyed their company.

The digs attempting to reveal Homer's Troy have combined literature and science in a facinating way. So much to learn, so little time.

Be well,

SR

JM said...

Hello!

Now it seems like the big cowboy enjoys talking about WW3. Such an attention whore, with so much power and so little brains.

I'm not used to believe in predictions and that type of thing, but everything in showing that the Incas and Mayas where right on. In 2012 we'll some type of "end", a big one. Not that we're going to die... but some damn huge change is coming.

Precisely because of that, take care :)

JM