Archive for the Port Awesome Category

I Was Wrong All Along

Posted in arguing with lunatics, art, current events, days in the life, god, music, philosophy, poetry, politics, pop culture, Port Awesome, race, religion, Science, teh internets with tags , on April 1, 2011 by furious buddha

I saw a billboard today advertising Glenn Beck’s show on the way home from work and noticed that it was on at that moment. A spark of wicked curiosity pulsed and I tuned away from NPR to the AM band. I’m glad I did. It’s time for me to confess that I had never really listened to Glenn-like most liberals, I had only ever experienced him through snippets on Media Matters and had never experienced him in context. My ears were filled with a mellifluous song of rationality that opened my mind and quite frankly changed my life!

As an unthinking consumer of socialist propaganda I had never really considered that my most cherished beliefs could be based on lies, delusions, and wishful thinking, but Glenn overturned my entire worldview less than ten minutes after I had been filled with a smug satisfaction from an NPR ‘report‘ that the unemployment rate had dropped. I had literally been composing hosannas to Obama in my mind! But that was probably because I had secretly hated America!

It’s true! Until I listened, really listened, to Glenn, I hated America. I hated it hard. I wanted it to fail. I realize now it’s why I voted against Sarah Palin in the last election! I regret this and can only pray I have a chance to rectify that ridiculous decision. I finally see the wisdom in breaking the backs of the working man in order to make the Koch Brothers and their kind even more wealthy; it’s because they’re simply better than the rest of us! I shall never forget the fine April day Glenn Beck made me a Conservative. Also, I’ve decided to convert to snake handling.

Worry less about politics and more about governing.

Posted in arguing with lunatics, current events, politics, pop culture, Port Awesome on December 30, 2010 by furious buddha

I took Miss Mayweather grocery shopping the other day and whilst strolling through the exotic produce aisles of the Super H Mart we were talking about politics. Specifically, our friend Justin had said ‘we need to worry less about politics and more about governing’ to her the other day and we both agreed while we are going to be in for a lot of politics for the next few years. The Era of Rational Discourse is not ready to begin quite yet, but I am a thing with feathers, apparently. Let me show you.

Michelle Bachmann is going to be sitting in Joe McCarthy’s old seat on the House Intelligence Committee. Instead of seeing this as a dangerously irresponsible thing to do I suspect that Boehner is seeking to keep her from spouting insanity on the Sunday talk shows. Members of the Intelligence Committee are entrusted with state secrets and therefore traditionally keep a low profile during their tenure. I could see where the Republican leadership might want to promote her into obscurity. Okay, I have to admit that this is really not exactly a hopeful point of view but it is definitely more optimistic than the one where she is in that seat in order to have an even better perch for shouting insane accusations as well as the power to subpoena.

As I wrote that last sentence the cat yowled, a mirror fell, and thunder pealed.

While I was sweeping up the glass I thought hard about what else there is to say. I think that Obama’s compromise with the Republicans on taxes was actually a good move from a pragmatic point of view even as my liberal sensibilities are outraged. The important thing is to keep the machinery of our economy and society growing and not lock it up over arguments about ideological principles. I still strongly support the Obama Administration and think that these first two years were successful by any reasonable metric.

The Tea Party won the midterm elections while the Republicans and Democrats split Congress. While there is a lot of energy to be found in the Tea Party, it seems to me the struggle between the hardcore crazies sniffing an opportunity and Republicans trying to manipulate the movement isn’t healthy. The problem with a movement that has no leadership is that it very easily becomes a mob.

That’s my two cents for the night; my unlimited love to y’all.

Is it because Buddhism isn’t ‘fair and balanced’?

Posted in current events, god, philosophy, politics, Port Awesome, religion with tags , , , on January 10, 2010 by furious buddha

*I started this post several days ago when life intervened. Sorry if it seems stale. Lily, I know you were following this horribly depressing story. That right there is why we need mental illness awareness programs for public servants (if not everyone at large).

Watching Grandpa Hatey try to explain how Brit Hume isn’t an ignorant loudmouth is pretty hilarious. But he probably is right when he says that ‘there are not a lot of Buddhists watching FOX’. Well, I sure don’t watch it. I do thank the lovely Miss M for the link. If it weren’t for the Port Awesome Bulletin I would be oblivious to current events and the shenanigans of the television people.

Of course, that might not be a bad thing to be.

‘Furious Buddha’ started as a joke a very long time ago. I occasionally would have myself introduced as ‘the Furious Buddha’ before a set and it seemed a natural internet name. Ever since I was a child I have been curious about the varieties of religious experience as much as I have been fascinated by the varieties of scientific, philosophical, and aesthetic experiences; it was natural that I would eventually discover the teachings of the Buddha. While this would prove to be influential in my life it is important to note that my initial understanding was of the most shallow kind. I am not a religious Buddhist but if I had to put labels on my beliefs ‘Zen Christian’ would be descriptive; the better I understand the Buddha the more clearly the truth within the Gospels resonates. To put it another way, Zen is a lens through which I strive to peer; Christ is who I am trying to glimpse.   While there is much to be learned from the study of the Buddha’s teachings and the practice of meditation has many practical benefits, simply co-opting the rituals and symbols of another culture is like hoping that wearing the right shirt will make you intelligent and sexy. No symbol has any inherent meaning or power outside of the minds of the maker and beholder of that symbol. There is no magic to be wrought in gestures or incantations of any kind. This does not mean religion itself is meaningless but the specific trappings of any religion are; it is not the ritual which is important but what the ritual signifies.

My theological and philosophical beliefs are what I practice every waking hour of my life, not something I pay lip service to for a few hours on Sunday mornings; while that may sound arrogant I don’t believe I come off as particularly pretentious or obnoxiously obsessed. Most people who know me would think the last thing on my mind was God, and that’s how I like it. I don’t believe my metaphysics should be taught in public schools or enshrined in rituals; nothing would repulse me more. In fact, I rarely discuss my specific metaphysical imaginings because I would be horrified by the thought of anyone taking them literally. We are conscious here in this real world together; our opportunity to express compassion to each other is here and now, not later in some other world. That humans are so inhumane in their disagreements about the nature of imaginary worlds, metaphysical theories and the nature of God is perhaps the greatest irony of the human condition.

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The weather has been really rough here this week, but that’s going on all over. The UK is having a really tough time of it-I heard someone stole two tons of salt from Glasgow. That’s just weird.

The Pathos of Spacebat

Posted in current events, god, Port Awesome, religion, Science with tags , , , , on March 18, 2009 by furious buddha

So, yeah, this thing on Spacebat was cool, no doubt. But it made me think about the uncomfortable fact that bats may be dying out. It seems a fungal infection may be the culprit, but we may never know exactly what happened as it is happening so fast. And thinking of that filled me with a sense of impossible loss and absurd irony; I saw myself wearing a Batman t-shirt laughing at a comic which showed a Neanderthal wearing a t-shirt with ‘Mammothman’ on it, and then zooming out from that to reveal that I was in a comic book that is being chuckled over by a bald guy in a silver jumpsuit with a picture of a robot on it, and then zooming out to reveal the bald guy in the robot’s comic book. Suddenly, Spacebat’s action took on an air of omen, of weird metaphor, of the non-fictional foreshadowing that reality confounds any author to match.

Lostmas *cough* (sniff)

Posted in current events, Port Awesome on March 18, 2009 by furious buddha

Bleah. I’m sick. From this morning’s PA Bulletin:

The crazy is widespread. Not only is Beck being recklessly paranoid, he is cheapening the memory of actual victims of genocide. Nice.

Spider Man for reals.

NA NA NA NA NA NA NA NA NA SPACEBAT!!!!!!

Yeah, that’s justice

There’s no connection between not having a gun and not shooting somebody and having a gun and shooting somebody, and you would be a fool and a communist to make one. -Bill Hicks

2009 A Space Odyssey Essay

Posted in pop culture, Port Awesome, teh internets on February 24, 2009 by furious buddha

Holy crap, this is amazingly weird.
2009: A Space Odyssey Essay.

‘The Riches’ is frakking brilliant. I just discovered it. Naturally, I have also discovered it was cancelled. Still, it’s on hulu. Lara, what’s up? I miss you.

Pinch Me

Posted in current events, days in the life, politics, Port Awesome, teh internets with tags on January 20, 2009 by furious buddha

Last night I walked in on Miss Mayweather weeping honest-to-gosh tears while she watched the celebratory performance of Woody Guthrie’s ‘This Land is Your Land’ in DC. She spoke poetically of catharsis and time, of history completing a rhyme, and I was struck deep; she’d only had one glass of wine. 

The Port Awesome News Service exchange for today was one for the history books, or at least good for a post. Prof, Dahlia, if you want in on that regular exchange, let Miss Mayweather or myself know via email. The traffic can be heavy at times, but her Good Morning! post is the high point of my virtual day. 

President Obama. I just like saying it. President Obama.

Ahhhh.

President Barack Hussein Obama. Of the United States.

Of America.

President Barack Hussein Obama of the United States of America.

<Ahem.>

 “Ladies and Gentleman of Earth and all surrounding planets,
may I present to you,
President Barack Hussein Obama of the United States of America!’

And it’s still real. We have awoken from the dream to find the dream is still here. This is a new kind of morning entirely in America.

I’m bald and stuff. I’m turning forty before I get another calendar. Dr King was assassinated fifteen months before I was born. The city I love burned in race riots the summer before I was born. Throughout my childhood adults whispered in my ear and told me to hate.

I have long taken weird secret ridiculous egomaniac delight with the fact that I was in the womb when a human being first walked on the Moon. The way I see it, on that day homo sapiens took a step that literally could be described as being of evolutionary significance. Still, when I was a kid, white parents insulted and threatened black kids in a way they would never talk to white kids.

While we had walked on the Moon, clearly many had not looked up to see that the object of mystery in the sky was actually a place you could visit or considered all that implied. It’s really the ‘all that implied’ part that matters. So much of what troubles humanity today is the result of the rote ignorance written into our cultural DNA by our ancestors experiences.

Was today as big as human beings walking on the Moon? In some ways, not at all. I have always found it natural to think in perspectives that people only a generation earlier struggled mightily to attain. I think much of this is because I had pictures of the Earth from space in front of me as early as I can remember wheras they had to imagine what it looked like. What I mean is that from one of the ways* I look at humanity the idea that one person or another should be leader of this group or another isn’t that staggering to me. However, from my perspective as an American who understands the past forty to four hundred years of history, today is about as incredible as it gets. In that same kind of good way as men walking on the Moon is.

*(I don’t believe I have a privileged perspective but rather I have some small perspective on my perspective that people who thought the world rested on the back of an enormous turtle wouldn’t have. )