Books and Movies
Well after looking at the news there’s not much new to report. Bolton and Pompeo are still continuing there war mongering, mostly on Israel’s behalf. There’s still talk that Russia will interfere with the elections. Yep, and my kitty may morph into a tiger. The big money from all the benefactors of electoral contributions/bribes are the real interference factors blamed on Russia. If Muellar hasn’t found anything yet he’s not going to. The sour grapes of the democrats just will continue to rot and they’ll lost another election because they won’t run a real progressive, some one that will shake things up and help the <50% folks that are sinking rapidly. That includes me as I watch my healthcare expenses rise every year. They have increased about 300% over the last 7–8 years.
I finished “Starry Speculative Corpse, The Horror of Philosophy Vol. 2”, by Eugene Thacker last night. This book had philosophical historical underpinnings setting up the modern ‘speculative realism’ movement. Darkness is always lurking under the real that we inhabit. And the current administration proves that point better than any other example I can thing of. Another book I read calls it Weitko. Paul Levy was the book’s author. “Dispelling Weitko” details how the dark side is pervasive in today’s world run mostly by sociopaths with a classical narcissistic leader in the US. Carl Jung calls it the shadow. We all have one. We can decide to acknowledge it and learn to live with it or we succumb to it and let it ruin the world. It should be obvious to anyone paying attention whom is winning these days.
Philosophy helps me to see tings the way they are. The social philosophy of Jean Baudrillard paints a good picture of what we as a nation have become. There are many ways to view things and then form reasoned opinions on the doings of say, the government. The French seem to have many prescient writers and philosophers. Thacker is American. Graham Harmon is another American philosopher of note. His ideas stemming from speculative realism have evolved into a modern philosophy called ‘object, oriented, ontology’. OOO or triple O for short. In it humans are no more or less important than any other object. It’s a flat ontology. Humankind is not the supreme being. 800 year old trees are just as important as people. I say we need to wake up and start taking care of all living things, let nature back into our lives, embrace it and live within the bountiful means provided freely by Earth.
One other great book I’ll mention; “Hyperobjects, Philosophy and Ecology after the End of the World” by Timothy Morton. So far my favorite book! He is an OOO philosopher. He mixes ecology with OOO philosophy and comes up with the term hyperobjects to describe global warming. It is so big in time and temporal space that humans can’t see all the implications that they’re immersed in. We can’t see the 6th Extinction Event we’re immersed in because of existential size, timescale and non-locality. We can only observe when species have become extinct, We see their number dwindling but lose the time scale before it’s already too late.
One example; the Asian lions that were abundant 2–3 thousand years ago. What happened?, you ask. Well the Romans mostly wiped them out for their bloody games pitting poor humans against lions for the entertainment industry of the day. Now due entirely to human slaughter and encroachment Asian lions are gone. There may be a few stragglers but gone for all practical purposes. Same with the Dodo. The sailors didn’t eat them mind you, they were just easy to kill. So no more Dodo. Thousands upon thousand more due to human hubris and stupidity. And accelerating at a pace that we as a species have no reference to. Humanity may or is the next big meteor.
Well now our climate is becoming unstable. The rapid rise of CO2, CH4(methane), all sorts of toxins produced from oil, etc, threatens humanity’s existence. It goes hand in hand with the same short sighted stupidity that wiped out the Asian lions. No one wants to face the fact that humans have been living beyond their means for several thousand years if not longer. The UN report from leading climate scientists, is ignored. I didn’t even read it(the UN report, I knew the urgency already) except for the numbers and they struck me as quite conservative. I’ve known this for a long time. I didn’t think the shit would hit the fan in my lifespan. Now it seems to be a distinct possibility.
The idiotic administration is shredding woefully inadequate regulations in a Roman feast sure to kill Earth and her children. Yeah, I’m a pessimist and a cynic. I’ve seen nothing of late to change my viewpoint. Arthur Schopenhauer, a German philosopher from the first half of the 19th century was a notorious pessimist. His view was even dimmer than mine but he has many valid points. I admire that. I see a collapse of industrial capitalism that will bring civilization down to a sustainable level. Or, I see a total collapse where survival is highly questionable.
Finally some fun in these dreary times. Thank goodness there’s still electricity for the net and TV.
To start off last night I watched “Apostle”, Netflix. It was a Netflix movie. It involved a mysterious cult on a secluded island with a deity sequestered for the islanders food production. Seems the food supply wasn’t able to grow anymore.(Fits right in with today’s calamity in the making. Maybe allegorical?) The leader kidnapped a girl for ransom to but food. Dark, gory, bloody, with nastiness just under the surface of things. 3.0 of five stars. Not really creepy but horror just the same.
Next on the docket was a drama. I needed a small break from all the fried egg, lobe burning horror. “Bomb City”, Amazon. A film based on real events in late 90’s Amarillo, Texas. Social commentary at some of its best. The justice system at its worst. Engaging with several characters fleshed out to where one cares about what transpires ending in an explosion of violence that costs a life in the process. Intolerance, alienation, youths that don’t fit in with the ‘norms’. I can relate. I just avoided assholes as best I could in high school. I remained peaceful. My hair was long not pointed. Same difference really. I was hassled by the cops. I tried to always fly under the radar, so to speak. No one died. Well, except for the ‘Nam that killed millions. 4.5 stars.
Lastly an old B-film, “The Sadist”, Amazon. Yeah, they have an immense library. Again one of the most irritating psychopaths in film. Of historical note though is that this film was inspired by the Starkweather killings and inspired the later,”Badlands” and “Natural Born Killers”. This was the first American film with noted cinematographer Vilmos Zigmond as Director of Photography. Billed as William in the credits. He shot my favorite movie, “Close Encounters of the Third Time” along with many other good films of note. A true master. The film itself was mostly sorry fare. I guess Psycho was already taken by Hitchcock. ‘The Sadist’ was a poor substitute. Watch the original “Psycho”. Bernard Hermann’s score in Psycho has set several orchestral motifs ever since. 2.2 stars.
That’s a Wrap & a Book
Time to grab a snack and choose a new book to start. ‘Sunday Funnies’ tomorrow. I’ve got plenty of books to select from, the time factor being the useful criterion. I’ve got a whole slew of Oxford’s, Very Short Introduction Books, usually 2–4 days to finish. I’ve got a Deleuze and Guattari book that will take several months. Several ones in between that range. We’ll see by Monday. Funnies tomorrow. Take care. Peace, The Ol’ Hippy