You can alter your perceptions

Just watch this.

Who are you?

Writing to a blog is very different from writing to a particular audience, because I really do not know who will be reading what I say. I could try to always target my message to the same people, and I do so when I participate on a bulletin board or another blog which is specific to some topic. But when I write here, it could be about anything, although the primary subject is cannabis.

So every message is to some people and not to others, though I hope as many understand what I am saying as might want to. When I try to imagine my audience, I think of at least three separate groups of people.

  • Progressives and liberals in the left blogosphere.
  • Cannabis users: medical, spiritual or personal.
  • Libertarians and conservatives.

The last message was more or less addressed to the junction of the cannabis users and neolibertarians/neoconservatives. If you aren’t a member of both of those groups, you might not get what I was saying and it might seem like nonsense. Especially if you aren’t a cannabis user. But maybe you will understand anyhow, there’s no way for me to know.

We all have our own dialects, our ways of expressing ourselves, which are unique to our social group. We have shorthand names for things that we understand. We call our friends things that they would not want to be called by a complete stranger. I don’t want you to call me a pothead unless you use cannabis. And that’s just respect. But if you do, I won’t be offended, I’ll just think you’re confused. It would be like using an ethnic term with someone whose ethnicity you don’t share.

Anyhow, if you ever want to know what I’m trying to say, if you think it makes no sense at all, you can ask me and if you’re nice about it I’ll probably answer you. I’m not hostile to anyone if you’re not hurting anyone. If I seem a little harsh sometimes, then let me know and I’ll consider if I might not be saying things that could be expressed more gently.

Don’t ask me to try to understand torture or mass murder, or to favor your position if you believe in those things. That is as gently as I can put that and you should rethink your approach if you want anyone to respect you.

As always, if this message is addressed to you, hopefully it will make sense to you.

How pot makes you feel stupid

I used to be really smart, and I knew I was the smartest kid in the whole world. It wasn’t true, but I believed it. And I believed a lot of things that I don’t anymore.

Pot made me honest. It made me more humble. And what that felt like, at first, being in a state of mind that I was so damn smart, to realize I wasn’t. I’m good at some things, I think I write pretty well, when I put my mind to it. I think I communicate well this way, and if I’m a little socially awkward, well it will get better with time.

It felt like I was stupid. Like I had no idea what I was talking about half the time. I had read something or been told something and I just repeated it because it was what I wanted to believe. You can’t penetrate this shell, with logic. You have to convince the person to break out on his or her own.

Pot does this. It makes us wake up inside, so we can perceive ourselves as we truly are. That can be an overjoyful experience for some people, who think themselves small and of no importance. But it can be a crushing blow to a person that thought himself so superior.

Conservatives go stark paranoid on cannabis. They really do. And a lot of the neolibertarian and neoconservative insanity is paranoia on a grand scale. Those pot smoking libertarians have talked themselves into a fantasy world of total freedom for themselves no matter how many others have to suffer or be enslaved.

So part of the peace we need to settle is between ourselves, and it’s not going to be easy, but you can’t kill us off. There are too many cannabis users, there are more than you can count, and we are going to survive. You cannot make a law which is going to target only one of us, and you cannot protect yourselves from your own allies when they decide you are standing in the way of their freedom.

See, that’s the rhetoric. That’s how George Bush talks and what he means. Freedom. Not for you. For him.

And so if cannabis is not set free, if we are not to be spared than neither will be you. Save yourselves by saving us, and we will talk and settle things between ourselves.

Elvis lives again!

Kate Bush – King of the Mountain

News collected

Thanks to thehim for linking several times to Cannablog in his Daily Kos diary: Drug War Roundup. I’d say 90% of the drug war is really cannabis prohibition, and I don’t write much about the other 10% because it shouldn’t be necessary to talk about the difficult issues regarding physically addictive and potentially fatal drugs to realize that cannabis is one of the most beneficial and least harmful herbs that God or nature has blessed the earth with. This is not an endorsement of the drug war against anything, but a matter of priority. The truth is we need to have more public and private honesty in talking about all of these things. Let’s try a peaceful solution, for a change.

Schwartzenegger vetoes health care

Isn’t it interesting how Republicans say that spending money to help people is “a serious and expensive mistake,” but spending money to torture and kill people is called national security. How secure do you feel when you can’t even get medicine? Or do you think you can’t lose your insurance? Try what happens if you get sick and lose your ability to work. Millions of families are without insurance, and if they make enough money to stay out of welfare, nobody will even issue them a policy to cover pre-existing conditions.

I’m serious about there being two completely diametric opposing conceptions of the purpose of government, and I really think there’s going to have to be a separation before there will be a resolution. Let people subscribe to the government they like, and if you don’t want to have anyone care about you when you’re sick or hungry, then choose the kind of government that will let you rot.

Hat-tip to Ellroon.

Say hello

Posted in Welcome. 1 Comment »

Oh, that other war

Glenn Greenwald writes about a new report in the New York Times:

So, a recap of the Iraq war: there were never any WMDs. The proliferation of government death squads and militias in Iraq means that, compared to the Saddam era, human rights have worsened and torture has increased to record levels. Iranian influence has massively increased, as a result of a Shiite fundamentalist government loyal to Tehran replacing the former anti-Iranian regime. We’ve squandered hundreds of billions of dollars and thousands of lives. And we have — according to the consensus of our own intelligence community — directly worsened the terrorist problem with our invasion, and continue to worsen it with our ongoing occupation.

It’s all bad. Every life lost, every person wounded, every destroyed dream, every sacrifice, every dollar wasted, every resource committed to Iraq that could not therefore help New Orleans, every thing that this war has cost us in our humanity…it made things worse. Not just in the sense of being an unequal trade, as if the cost were too high for the benefit obtained. The benefit itself, doesn’t exist. Your government is manufacturing terrorists with your money and your lives.

That’s not just my opinion. That’s what the government’s own National Intelligence Estimate said. That’s the consensus of the CIA, the NSA, the Defense Department, everyone in the intelligence-gathering arms of the United States.

Put that in your pipe, and smoke it.

Update: Maha has more.

My present mood, as music

Ozric Tentacles – Chewier (Live)

but I’ve always liked this one…

Ozric Tentacles – Vita Voom

Am I the only one who sees a lion on the left?

Cydonia
(Click image to enlarge)

Hello, Aslan? Is that you?

And that circled part is what has been called the Face on Mars.

More information from the BBC.

Hat-tip to Libby.

Don’t wanna die in a nuclear war

Don’t wanna talk about anything else.
We don’t wanna know.
We’re just dedicated
to our favorite shows:
Saturday Night Live,
Monday Night Football,
Dallas, Jeffersons,
Gilligan’s Island,
Flintstones.

– Emilio Estevez as Otto Maddox in Repo Man

As Tristero says, if you think that George Bush is just bluffing about using nuclear weapons against Iran, he’s got a mission to complete, and that mission involves a world conflagration. Don’t support Republican candidates, not for anything, not for dog catcher. I don’t care if you’re a life-long member of the party and you think the Democrats are a bunch of socialist retreads, and you have never voted any other way. If you vote for a Republican, you are giving power and authority to the man who is going to end civilization if he possibly can. Don’t let him do that.

And if this is overstated, tell me about it after Bush is out of office, even if he has to be impeached and arrested for war crimes first.

A kindly hat-tip to Paul the Spud, too, and you should read his post too.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.