In praise of an American Original Performer, Willy DeVille 1950-2009

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Willy_DeVille#In_New_Orleans

This year marks the 30th anniversary of  eclectic entertainer Willy De Ville’s embrace of New Orleans, Louisiana, where he says he found his spiritual home. “I was stunned”, he said in a 1993 interview. “I had the feeling that I was going back home. It was very strange… I live in the French Quarter, two streets away from Bourbon Street; at night, when I go to bed, I hear the boogie that comes from the streets, and in the morning, when I wake up, I hear the blues.

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https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Willy_DeVille#Death_and_legacy

Visionary Willy De Ville who did his “New” based on the “Old”   —

Thom Jurek wrote about De Ville  after his death, “Willy DeVille is America’s loss even if America doesn’t know it yet. The reason is simple: Like the very best rock and roll writers and performers in our history, he’s one of the very few who got it right; he understood what made a three-minute song great, and why it mattered—because it mattered to him. He lived and died with the audience in his shows, and he gave them something to remember when they left the theater, because he meant every single word of every song as he performed it. Europeans like that. In this jingoistic age of American pride, perhaps we can revisit our own true love of rock and roll by discovering Willy DeVille for the first time—or, at the very least, remember him for what he really was: an American original. The mythos and pathos in his songs, his voice, and his performances were born in these streets and cities and then given to the world who appreciated him much more than we did.

Singer Peter Wolf of the J. Geils Band said about him, “He had all the roots of music that I love and had this whole street thing of R&B — just the whole gestalt… He was just a tremendous talent; a true artist in the sense that he never compromised. He had a special vision and remained true to it.”

Writing in the Wall Street Journal about the posthumous release of DeVille’s Come a Little Bit Closer: The Best of Willy DeVille Live (2011), Marc Meyers declared, “There was creative heat and pain in Mr. DeVille’s eerie, edgy look and sound. While his punk-roadhouse fusion sailed over the heads of many at home, his approach inspired many British pop invaders of the 1980s, including Tears for Fears, Human League and Culture Club… He was a punk eclectic with a heart of golden oldies and Joe Cocker‘s pipes. A seedy sophisticate, Mr. DeVille was decades ahead of his time.”

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Like Willy DeVille after him, Rev. Hung Wai Ching 1905-2002 was THE ORIGINAL in Hawai’i  — Hung Wai our greatest modern historymaker (Kamehameha the Great the greatest ancient page-turner)  —

https://curtisnarimatsu.wordpress.com/2013/08/04/rev-hung-wai-ching-1905-2002-our-greatest-modern-destinymaker/

Rev. Ching look-alike as a young man

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Ancient Grecian (Greek) precept peripeteia — reversal of expectation/convention —  denote mysteries lost in the clouds of time!!

Rev. Ching, a Chinese American, Chinese being ancient enemies of the Japanese, is the reason the Japanese in Hawai’i survived the cauldron of WWII & the bombing of Pearl Harbor 12/7/41   —–  in addition to averting mass internment of  our local Japanese population in Hawai’i, Hung Wai is the genesis of the most decorated American military unit for its size in WWII   — the segregated 100th Batt./442nd RCT.

Keopu Kona’s Koji Ariyoshi 1914-1976, no relation to gutless coward George Ariyoshi, was a key acolyte of Hung Wai. 

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Rev. Hung Wai Ching got Merchant St. godfather/baron/scion Frank Atherton 1877-1945 to sponsor left-wing radical Koji Ariyoshi of Keopu, North Kona to grad from U Georgia Journalism School — Yale of the South — where Koji learned under master litérateurs  — peripeteia that premier capitalist yet well-meaning Atherton sponsored left wing radical Koji—   Koji look-alike as a young man   —

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Koji teamed up with West Coast legend Goso Karl Yoneda 1906-1999, who founded the ILWU on the West Coast (just as ‘Opihikao native Jack Kawano founded the ILWU in Hawai’i)  — Nikkei (Japanese ethnicity) all.

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Goso Karl Yoneda look-alike as a young man

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Our greatest Korean-American?  Forget “pollster” (spineless) Chief Justice Ron Moon & patsy Mayor Harry Kim.    It’s none other than our incomparable brilliant heartstopper granite mountain of integrity, Herbert Choy 1916-2004.   Young Oak Kim 1919-2005 also deserves mention.

Image result for images judge herbert choy
 

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Herbert_Choy

Herbert Choy

Herbert Choy
Herbert Choy.jpg

Official portrait
Korean name
Hangul 최영조
Revised Romanization Choe Yeong-jo
McCune–Reischauer Ch’oe Yŏng-cho

Herbert Young Cho Choy (January 6, 1916 – March 10, 2004) was the first Asian American to serve as a United States federal judge and the first person of Korean ancestry to be admitted to the bar in the United States.[1]

Background

Choy was born in 1916 in Makaweli, Hawaii, to Korean immigrants who worked in sugar plantations in Hawaii. Choy received his Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Hawaii in 1938 and his J.D. from Harvard Law School in 1941. He was the first person of Korean ancestry to be admitted to practice law in the United States.

He was a Hawaii Territorial Guard from 1941 to 1942, and he was in the United States Army from 1942 to 1946. From 1946 to 1947, Choy served in the United States Army Judge Advocate General’s Corps. After leaving the service, he worked with the firm of Fong Miho Choy & Robinson from 1947 to 1957, where one of his partners was the future U.S. Senator Hiram Fong.

From 1957 to 1958, Choy served as Attorney General for the Territory of Hawaii. On April 7, 1971, at the urging of Senator Fong, President Richard Nixon appointed Choy to the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, to a seat vacated by Stanley Nelson Barnes. At the time of Choy’s appointment, there were no Asian Americans serving anywhere on the federal bench. Choy was the first individual from Hawaiʻi ever appointed to the court. Choy was confirmed by the United States Senate on April 21, 1971, and received commission on April 23, 1971.

Choy actively served until October 3, 1984, when he took senior status, continuing to serve as a Ninth Circuit judge, but with a partially reduced caseload, until his death in 2004. He was a native of the Hawaiian island of Kauai and had chambers in Honolulu. In 2001, one of Choy’s former law clerks, Richard Clifton, became the second judge from Hawaii to serve on the Ninth Circuit.

Choy authored many significant opinions, upholding the constitutionality of a law allowing child sexual abuse victims to testify via closed-circuit television, allowing a Muslim inmate to sue Phoenix-area jail officials for imposing discriminatory security measures at Muslim services, and upholding California’s “green advertising” law regulating advertisers’ claims about “biodegradable” or “recycled” products.

He died in Honolulu, Hawaii on March 10, 2004 due to complications from pneumonia.[2]

References

  1. Jump up ^ “Isle Judge was Asian Pioneer in the Law Field Nationwide”. archives.starbulletin.com. March 12, 2004. Retrieved July 20, 2015. 
  2. Jump up ^ “Herbert Choy served on 9th Circuit Court”. the.honoluluadvertiser.com. March 12, 2004. Retrieved July 20, 2015. 

External links

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Young Oak Kim look-alike

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https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Young-Oak_Kim

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Our greatest Luso/Portuguese — peripatetic intrepid man of God Rev. Ernest Gomes da Silva 1873-1955  (legendary greatest mob-buster Paul De Silva’s vuvu/grandpa, Paul’s providential divine educator dad Ernest Bowen De Silva’s father)  — look-alike        https://curtisnarimatsu.wordpress.com/2013/08/11/our-greatest-portugueseluso-historymaker-christian-pastor-ernest-gomes-de-silva-1873-1955-fka-da-silva-for-his-ethnic-inclusion-his-congregational-calling-social-class-integration-upw/

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Dennis Farina in 2011.jpg

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our greatest Puerto Rican in Hawai’i —  Carlos Mario Fraticelli, Puerto Rican poet laureate of Hawaii 1863-1945      http://archives.starbulletin.com/98/02/05/features/dakine.html

look-alike

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Jon Seda at 2014 Imagen Awards.jpg

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our greatest Okinawan, Shokan Jesse Shima (bukuro) 1901-2002 look-alike (Hilo’s Jesse confidant to FDR’s chief advisor Harry Hopkins & to President Ike Eisenhower’s chief advisor Jim Hagerty, & Jesse great affiliate of African-Americans Mordecai Johnson/Charles Hamilton Houston — Brown v. Bd. of Education 1954 — greatest ever U.S. Supreme Court case)

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our greatest older Filipino immigrant  in Hawai’i  — Pablo Manlapit  1891-1969 look-alike  (but flammable Manlapit, 25 yrs. younger than our sage greatest Japanese immigrant Rev. Takie Okumura, ticked off Okumura for hothead Manlapit’s impulsive ferocity)

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Manlapit chutzpah (sass)

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and younger Filipino immigrant Ben Menor 1922-1986 look-alike

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Rev. Takie Okumura look-alike

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poignant Westernized assimilationist Buddhist Rev. Yemyo Imamura look-alike as a young man

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our greatest modern ethnic Hawaiian   —  Bill Richardson — look-alike

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https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_S._Richardson#Controversies

Richardson’s landmark decisions recognized the precedent of the state’s unique cultural and legal history; specifically the public’s interests in the environment, and the rights of the indigenous Hawaiian people. Under Richardson, the court held that the public’s interest in the natural environment may limit or prohibit commercial development of sensitive areas, particularly coastlines and beaches; that the public has right to access Hawaii’s beaches, and that land created by lava flows belonged to the state, not to nearby property owners. Richardson declared, “The western concept of exclusivity is not universally applicable in Hawaii.” When two sugarcane plantations each sought the right to a water source, Richardson cited precedent from the court of the Kingdom of Hawai’i, and declared that the water belonged to neither of them, but to the state. The Richardson court recognized previously ignored claims of the indigenous Hawaiian people.

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Bill Paty look-alike (Paty lubed the money train for ethnic Hawaiian entitlements)

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Randolph Scott-publicity.JPG

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Part-Hawaiian vocalists Irie Love & Anuhea

Irie Love
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verve!!     —

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outrageous abominations for proper society; &  “tribal” sexuality “disrespects” genderS

http://www.complex.com/music/the-greatest-rap-songs-about-sex/rasheeda-got-that-good

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Hawai’i local “gang rap” redemptively resents firearms/blades

because bare-handed “rite of passage” to “testosterone-HOOD aka DA HOOD” atavistically/tribally  comes from our loving Polynesian culture & our geographical separation from the Stateside culture of violence (i.e. American Civil War which resulted in murderous carnage of well over half a million soldiers 620,000  —  taken as a % of today’s population, the total KIA count is 6 million  — inexplicable/cataclysmic!

https://www.civilwar.org/learn/articles/civil-war-casualties

 “Negroes” very much suffered at the hands of “White” warfare

https://global.oup.com/academic/product/sick-from-freedom-9780199758722?cc=us&lang=en&  )

“Urban gangSTA rap” denotes firearms/blades as implements of destruction/domination

https://genius.com/21-savage-and-young-nudy-air-it-out-lyrics

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gangsta_rap

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my message on June 5, 2018 to Scotty Brewster about our Kapoho lava inundation   —

https://www.facebook.com/spencerfamilyofhawaii/

Obadiah Spencer had his ranch/lumber mill/etc. (Spencer anthropology)  in our current East Rift Zone lava devastation area (incl. Kula Kapoho graben — lowland — literal meaning of “Kapoho” —  between perched Kapoho fault system to the south, & Koa’e fault system to the north), Spencer being connected with former owner Charles Kana’ina & wife Kekāuluohi, parents of monarch Lunalilo (exremely popular 1st elected monarch affectionately dubbed “The People’s King”), Kana’ina being descended from ancient ruler ‘Umi, whose exquisite heiau atop Kula Kapoho Puna “Pu’u Kuki’i” withstands this moment’s lava inundation. Aptly, so venerated was the stonework (not even a blade of grass could grow between stones) that one of its stones was emplaced in Kanaina’s ‘Iolani Palace location (cherished by King Kalākaua, Tom/Charles Spencer’s dearest friend/confidant), & another of its stones set at Lyman House (like Tom Spencer, literal racial integrationist Rufus Lyman eventually bought out Obadiah’s interests — site Kula means plains/meadows in Hawaiian — & Lyman’s Spencer ranch transitioned to Wm. H. Reed/stepson W.H. Shipman later pastoral holdings). Obadiah’s original ranch/lumber yards sites & Hawaii’s largest freshwater natural resource, Green Lake, were inundated by lava 3 days ago, being nestled in the bosom (at the east base) of Kapoho Cone protecting the Green Lake area for 400 yrs. till now. BTW, Kuki’i sister cone Pu’u Kukae tops the settler cemetery which was spared being overrun by the 1960 Kapoho lava flow (which extended the shoreline a half mile out to sea, in the process covering my parents’/our vacation home site & the gorgeous ocean tidepools). Lunalilo was descended from legendary seafarer Pa’ao, who introduced the heiau edifice/complex  — & volcano lava deity Madam Pele!!  Spencer anthropology converges concisely with the cultural genesis of Hawaiians right here at Pu’u Kuki’i!!!

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Our family’s oceanfront tidepools were situated 100 ft. oceanside of the homesite farthest toward the ocean in this video at timeclock 4:39   —

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What the 1960 Kapoho lava flow did not cover, the 2018 lava flow does as it creeps forward over uncovered territory  — see the gravel road at the bottom of the screen at timeclock :14 below, the same gravel road you see at timeclock 4:39 (gravel road heading toward the ocean) in the previous video above.   The lava inexorably creeps forward.

 

 

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Tremendous thinker & archetype of forgiveness —  investigative/research sleuth extraordinaire George Will   —

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/theres-no-good-reason-to-stop-felons-from-voting/2018/04/06/88484076-3905-11e8-8fd2-49fe3c675a89_story.html?utm_term=.231ae63824be

There’s no good reason to stop felons from voting

by George F. Will

 

The bumpy path of Desmond Meade’s life meandered to its current interesting point. He is a graduate of Florida International University law school but cannot vote in his home state because his path went through prison: He committed nonviolent felonies concerning drugs and other matters during the 10 years he was essentially homeless. And Florida is one of 11 states that effectively disqualify felons permanently.

Meade is one of 1.6 million disenfranchised Florida felons — more than the total number of people who voted in 22 separate states in 2016. He is one of the more than 20 percent of African American Floridians disenfranchised. The state has a low threshold for felonious acts: Someone who gets into a bar fight, or steals property worth $300 — approximately two pairs of Air Jordans — or even drives without a license for a third time can be disenfranchised for life. There is a cumbersome, protracted process whereby an individual, after waiting five to seven years (it depends on the felony) can begin a trek that can consume 10 years and culminates with politicians and their appointees deciding who can recover their vote.

Meade heads the Florida Rights Restoration Coalition, which gathered more than 1 million signatures to get the state Supreme Court to approve, and local supervisors of elections to verify, the ballot initiative that voters will decide on Nov. 6. Meade’s basic argument on behalf of what he calls “returning citizens” such as him is: “I challenge people to say that they never want to be forgiven for anything they’ve done.” Persons convicted of murder or felony sexual offense would not be eligible for enfranchisement.

Intelligent and informed people of good will can strenuously disagree about the wisdom of policies that have produced mass incarceration. What is, however, indisputable is that this phenomenon creates an enormous problem of facilitating the reentry into society of released prisoners who were not improved by the experience of incarceration and who face discouraging impediments to employment and other facets of social normality. In 14 states and the District , released felons automatically recover their civil rights.

Recidivism among Florida’s released felons has been approximately 30 percent for the five years 2011-2015. Of the 1,952 people whose civil rights were restored, five committed new offenses, an average recidivism rate of 0.4 percent. This sample is skewed by self-selection — overrepresentation of those who had the financial resources and tenacity to navigate the complex restoration process that each year serves a few hundred of the 1.6 million. Still, the recidivism numbers are suggestive.

What compelling government interest is served by felon disenfranchisement? Enhanced public safety? How? Is it to fine-tune the quality of the electorate? This is not a legitimate government objective for elected officials to pursue. A felony conviction is an indelible stain: What intelligent purpose is served by reminding felons — who really do not require reminding — of their past, and by advertising it to their community? The rule of law requires punishments, but it is not served by punishments that never end and that perpetuate a social stigma and a sense of never fully reentering the community.

Meade, like one-third of the 4.7 million current citizens nationwide who have reentered society from prison but cannot vote, is an African American. More than 1 in 13 African Americans nationally are similarly disenfranchised, as are 1 in 5 of Florida’s African American adults. Because African Americans overwhelmingly vote Democratic, ending the disenfranchisement of felons could become yet another debate swamped by partisanship, particularly in Florida, the largest swing state, where close elections are common: Republican Gov. Rick Scott’s margins of victory in 2010 and 2014 were 1.2 and 1.1 percent, respectively. And remember the 537 Florida votes that made George W. Bush president.

Last week, Scott’s administration challenged a federal judge’s order that the state adopt a rights-restoration procedure that is less arbitrary and dilatory. A Quinnipiac poll shows that 67 percent of Floridians favor and only 27 percent oppose enfranchisement of felons. These numbers might provoke Republicans, who control both houses of the legislature, to try to siphon away support for the restoration referendum by passing a law that somewhat mitigates the severity of the current policy. Such a law would be presented for the signature of the governor, who is trying to unseat three-term Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson.

Again, who is comfortable with elected politicians winnowing the electorate? When the voting results from around the nation are reported on the evening of Nov. 6, some actual winners might include 1.6 million Floridians who were not allowed to cast ballots.

Read more from George F. Will’s archive or follow him on Facebook.

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“Why do you drink a poison brewed from the root of bitterness — in order to foment a curse on your adversary??”  rhetorically asks erudite sage Pastor Wilfredo Agngaray.    

1) Unforgiveness (perpetrator’s ego defensiveness which conscripts/ruins its victim — caused by a spirit of fear of rejection/failure — estrangement/separation-brokenness-resentment; getting dumped)

and

2) Overpride (self-inflated importance caused by smallness of spirit-inferiority/insecurity  — alienation/being dumped — abandonment; absence of self-respect

are self-destructive.  

Hebrews 12:15, Matthew 18:23-35

https://curtisnarimatsu.wordpress.com/2014/03/28/1-peter-48-love-covers-a-multitude-of-sins-center-of-grace-or-in-the-secular-sense-forgive-yourself-for-what-is-not-in-your-power-to-do/

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https://curtisnarimatsu.wordpress.com/2012/07/13/energy-vamps-croix-and-george-brine/

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Unforgiveness/judgmentalism/resentment usually consist of personal feelings of inadequacy/guilt  in relation to another person (e.g. getting dumped).

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Overpride/self-importance usually involves absence of self-confidence  — how you perceive yourself in the eyes & opinions of others  — the surrounding collective social milieu  — in addition to the most crucial matter  — absence of one’s personal intimate solitary self-respect, which also overlaps with unforgiveness at its deepest personal root above.   The collective shame against you which you perceive is all-consuming, which can result in needless extreme self-imposed stress, anxiety,  and depression.   Celebrated painter Vincent van Gogh was not able to separate himself (self-respect)  from his perceived opinions of others about him (issue of self-confidence), so he self- compelled to wander in this tragic and indifferent world and life of ours, ultimately shooting himself in the heart (terminal abandonment), not the head (estrangement).  Perceived terminal abandonment seemingly appears worse than perceived estrangement/separation.

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Peculiarly, van Gogh was not swollen with overpride/egomania, but instead sorrowed/lamented over his perceived unhappy life.  Anthony Bourdain, on the other hand, probably was angry because he was not happy, self-evidently answering his own mother’s inexplicable puzzlement as to why he would commit suicide when he had all the fame & fortune one fantasizes about.  Fashion designer Kate Spade’s hanging 3 days before Bourdain’s hanging (unrelated to each other) apparently was triggered over her estrangement (getting dumped) from her husband, who was going to divorce her.

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Symbols are the language of dreams. A symbol can invoke a feeling or an idea and often has a much more profound and deeper meaning than any one word can convey.

 

http://www.dreammoods.com/dreamdictionary/

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Symbols (other persons/things)  often “mask” the actual person/thing  (of one’s deepest secrets and hidden feelings –

unresolved conflicts discoverable via transference, as an example

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Psychoanalytic_dream_interpretation#Contemporary_psychoanalytic_approach

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transference

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Displacement_(psychology)    )

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inasmuch the real person/thing emblematic of  immense suffering stretches oneself (e.g. the dreamer) into the vortex of vulnerability –

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a psychic well so deep that is not without grave cost    –

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perhaps in the extreme instance  –   to die as one lived –  as a person of self-determination and self-worth.

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http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/11/02/brittany-maynard-death_n_6077482.html?utm_hp_ref=religion

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Yet, in the depths of despair, absurdity, and indifference of life,

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one finds the deepest connectedness, the deepest continuity,

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with the primary humanity which defines you  –

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 the piety of being who you are because someone loved you.

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http://www.huffingtonpost.com/kathleen-anderson/why-cornel-west-loves-jan_b_6140744.html?utm_hp_ref=books

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My life has been a Griffin Dunne character in After Hours    

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Paul Hackett (Dunne) experiences a series of misadventures as he tries to make his way home  (mishaps produce laughter via cynicism, skepticism, & the irony of incurring wrath thru one’s desire of pleasure).

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This film is on the list of “Great Movies,” and it combines comedy, satire, and irony (irreducible truth) with unrelenting pressure and a sense of all-pervading paranoia/destruction.

Hopscotch to oblivion’, Barcelona, Spain

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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dtPI9jIx1kU

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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/After_Hours_(film)

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immensely passionate Anna Zorkina   —

 

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Elvis look-alike

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One should not feel worthless for being forsaken by another –

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The words were a powerful intervention and hapless. Like stepping out in your front yard to shout down a tornado. The pathos of helplessness.

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To live well in our grief, we have to forgive ourselves for what was not in our power to do.

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“The luck of the draw.” — Steven Kalas

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http://www.reviewjournal.com/life/family/best-approach-help-some-addicts-step-away

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http://www.lvrj.com/living/relationship-important-part-of-effective-therapy-127085853.html

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The points are to establish love and emotional support as our idyllic commands, in a tragic and indifferent world.

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Needless suffering is of this world, stuck in this indifferent and tragic life.

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Indeed, true love endures. It’s just that people need to close the gestalt of being in love with the person who no longer loves you and get through their hurt, bitterness, disappointment and anger before what endures can be apprehended as the honored friend it is (self-respect) and not the cruel enemy it appears to be right after we’ve been dumped by the love of our life.

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True love endures. That’s a good thing.

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But true love is different from needless suffering for the rest of your life.

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At the end of the day, we have to grow a self-respect sufficient not to want someone who doesn’t want us.

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http://www.lvrj.com/view/love-can-endure-if-people-work-through-lost-relationships-144330465.html

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Søren Kierkegaard says that life is full of absurdity, and one must make his and her own values in an indifferent world. One can live meaningfully (free of despair and anxiety) in an unconditional commitment to something finite, and devotes that meaningful life to the commitment, despite the vulnerability inherent to doing so. As sage Steven Kalas says, we’re here to love and be loved. That’s it. Dying people revel in who they became in meaningful relationships (soulmates)! Every other dimension of life — job, money, golf game, emptying the kitchen trash — is only important as it serves the end of how and why you are related to another soul.

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“Sometimes the worst pain comes from feeling unloved [negatively manifesting unforgiveness — ego defensiveness caused by a spirit of fear of rejection/failure — estrangement/separation-brokenness-resentment-recently getting dumped]

and

abandoned [thence imagining the opposite — entitlement– overpride (self-inflated importance caused by smallness of spirit-inferiority/insecurity  — alienation/being dumped -past/present tenses)].”

 [The positive outcomes are the opposite of “involuntary” separation/estrangement/brokenness — i.e. wholeness

&     abandonment/alienation  — i.e. freedom

   https://curtisnarimatsu.wordpress.com/2015/08/28/music-a-bridge-from-abandonment-and-brokenness-to-wholeness-and-freedom/    ]

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That happened to me when my marriage of more than three decades ended. When my husband walked out on me, he took my sense of self-worth with him.

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Without him to validate me as a human being,

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I began to think I wasn’t worth anything at all.”

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It is very hard to let go of your past. For years I held on to my old life, refusing to let go. I just couldn’t see any other life worth living. Letting go of your past is a long, hard process, and for me that process isn’t over yet. In some ways, it’s just beginning.

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But here is why it’s important that we put in that time and effort — because if we live in the past, we will never discover our destiny. Destiny, promise, potential, purpose — all of these are things that have to do with the future, not the past.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/antoinette-tuff/three-steps-to-turning-pain-purpose_b_4979660.html?utm_hp_ref=gps-for-the-soul&ir=GPS%20for%20the%20Soul

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I stand incredulous before the sheer number of people reporting/experiencing symptoms of depression. I say again, I don’t believe our ancestors experienced the same proportion of depressive symptoms. Possible explanations for this phenomenon: Crisis of meaning, for example. An increasingly vacuous culture, with significant evidence of devolution. Or, perhaps depression/depressive episodes is in part provoked by the emotional self-absorption of moderns – the observable, inexplicable delay of real emotional conversance and maturity in modern people. — Steven Kalas

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“For me, there’s hardly a gnat’s whisker of difference between the psychological idea of healthy individuation and the Christian idea of salvation. Both include the lifetime journey of authentic living.”

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The spirit of fear (1. unforgiveness/self-conscripted insecurity/ego defensiveness; 2. smallness ergo self-inflated importance to mask our insecurity) is selfishness.     https://curtisnarimatsu.wordpress.com/2012/07/13/energy-vamps-croix-and-george-brine/

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When the human ego conscripts the language, the work and the mantle of self-respect, you start to feel really good and right about discarding people from your life.

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And then you can know that you were right, because you don’t have any friends at all.

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Self-respect and self-importance — not the same at all. But they can feel the same.

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Why can’t I be like you or in sync with you?

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Because then there would be no need for a me —  just you. 

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https://curtisnarimatsu.wordpress.com/2012/12/21/i-write-to-live-authentically-having-been-is-the-surest-kind-of-being-per-great-sage-viktor-frankl/

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I write to live authentically — “having been” is the surest kind of being, per great sage Viktor Frankl

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Usually, to be sure, man considers only the stubble field of transitoriness [the “now”]

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and

overlooks

the full granaries of the past [reflective lookback] –

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wherein he had salvaged once and for all his deeds, his joys

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and also his sufferings.

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Nothing can be undone, and nothing can be done away with.

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[for example, I dream of being loved & wanted in the most beautiful way, & even if this dream is not reality, such thought/”unction” comprises my strength & “positive/right” attitude, even in the starkest moment of despair/seemingly hopeless predicament/state of nonexistence-nonbeing closest to death itself, having been forsaken all the way around —

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which is why Jewish Viktor Frankl’s dream amid the Holocaust even when facing down the death chamber/firing squad was “the angels are in perpetual contemplation of an infinite glory.” Ohh, so true!!]

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I should say ”having been” is the surest kind of being.

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http://www.goodreads.com/author/quotes/2782.Viktor_E_Frankl?page=2

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‘Instead of possibilities, I have realities in my past, not only the reality of work done and of love loved –

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but of sufferings bravely suffered. These sufferings are even the things of which I am most proud, although these are things which cannot inspire envy.’ “

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From “Logotherapy in a Nutshell”, an essay” Viktor E. Frankl, Man’s Search for Meaning

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The reality of life is the luck or unluck of the draw [a crapshoot] —

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“fair” & “unfair” are nonexistent in life’s vocabulary —

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life “just is.”

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Thence, how I deal with setbacks is the key to existence, not the external factual triggers [to despair/hopelessness of predicament].

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https://curtisnarimatsu.wordpress.com/2012/11/17/all-those-moments-of-life-will-be-lost-in-time-like-tears-in-the-rain-time-to-for-me-time-to-deal-with-myself-alone/

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http://www.lvrj.com/living/54285947.html

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In this gaping hole of despair & hopelessness of one’s predicament is a crushing emptiness and an aloneness that can make you lose your mind and a sadness that can make your heart question the wisdom and the relevance of continuing to beat — a sadness no person thinks one can bear alone.

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On some days, very much to wish it would stop beating.

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To die of unrequited love. Van Gogh didn’t shoot himself in the head. He shot himself in the heart. He saw reality so deeply and clearly, yet could not ultimately disconnect his heart [“be not of this world” — self-respect despite this indifferent and tragic sentient life] from this reality or the other people in it.

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Van Gogh died because, in the end, he could not differentiate himself [self-respect] from the Collective Unconscious [our indifferent & tragic lack of empathy/compassion in our broken/flawed sentient nature] into which he was compelled to wander.

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https://curtisnarimatsu.wordpress.com/2012/11/24/sharing-grief-puts-a-healing-distance-between-us-and-the-pain-this-is-why-storytelling-matters/

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sharing grief puts a healing distance between us and the pain — this is why storytelling matters

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Share the suffering. The opportunity to tell the story of our suffering to a compassionate and skillful listener is helpful beyond measure. Simply in the telling and retelling, we begin to shift perspective, to put a healing distance between us and the pain.

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https://curtisnarimatsu.wordpress.com/2012/12/14/because-in-the-end-great-journeys-of-integrity-are-walked-alone-sage-steven-kalas/

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http://www.lvrj.com/living/10174701.html

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Great journeys in emotional maturity are walked alone

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When another man’s life forces you to behold your own smallness, all you have to do is retro-narrate pathologized stories about him. Just like that, your world is a safer, happier place.

Your friends who are simply gone? You force me to behold,  something I hate to think about:

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All great journeys in emotional maturity are ultimately walked alone.

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The archetypal picture here is probably Jesus, whose friends agreed to accompany him into the garden of Gethsemane that night to pray. Jesus is scared. Anxious. Asking God if there isn’t some other way. He looks to his friends for support and encouragement.

And they are sound asleep. And Jesus asks a rhetorical question into the silent night air: “Will no one stay awake with me?”

As a matter of fact, no. Tonight Jesus will suffer, and he will suffer alone.

How to maintain some sense of respect and optimism for humanity? I can only tell you what I do.

When I’m feeling low, when I’ve lost track of why I keep putting one foot in front of the other, when I am sick and tired of paying the price for living out values about which no one else appears to have much if any investment, when I can no longer argue with Protestant theologian John Calvin who used the word “depraved” to describe the essential nature of human beings …

… well, that’s when I think of people like you [who suffers alone in ennobled integrated fashion to care for his incapacitated wife].

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http://www.lvrj.com/living/9380491.html

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Mystery surrounds deep connections we make with others [making friends with “Alone”]

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An old friend writes from far away. Oh, not that old. She’s 48. I mean we’ve been friends a long, long time.

There’s this bond between us. A connection. I felt it the first time we spoke, which is funny because the first thing she ever communicated to me was disdain. I was 23, so I reached into my repertoire for managing repartee with beautiful women and selected “boyish cockiness” for my retort.

When you’re 23 and male, boyish cockiness is pretty much the extent of your repertoire.

But that was it for us — bonded. A connection that has survived time together, protracted times apart, even years of no communication whatsoever. The friendship has survived love affairs — not with each other — marriages and becoming parents. We’ve been drunk together. And sober. It occurs to me that I’ve never seen her cry.

She was 20 when I met her. Once, on a whim, she sent me a picture of herself at age 5. I smiled. Somewhere inside myself I knew her then, too. Recognized her. In some alternative past, she and I played together in a sandbox (until she made me cry because she was so bossy). Like the bond between us contains secret passages that defy time and space.

She writes to me: “I get you, Steven Kalas.”

Her words strike me like thunder. Truly awestruck, like the way you fall into a spectacular sunset, or the way you stop breathing when you’re standing in a barn at 2 a.m. watching the birth of a calf. I’m focused in a point of time, staring at my monitor. It’s like she’s right here. Right now. I have a friend who gets me. She sees me. I jumble a few words and she says, “Oh yeah.” She not only understands, but understands why and how things matter to me.

Amen.

Then I have this other friend. Or did. Or thought I did. Could’ve sworn we were friends. Soul mates. Years we were friends. Across passion and victory and folly and failure. Across celebration and loss. This friend knows me. And doesn’t know me at all.

We’re not connected anymore.

And I know as much about why we’re no longer connected as I do why I’m still connected to the other friend. Which is to say I don’t know anything at all. And I’ve been railing against the disconnection, like, if I protest loudly and long enough, my erstwhile friend will snap out of it and be connected to me again.

I’ve decided to stop railing. Sad, yes. Probably sad forever. But pounding on it serves all the purpose of pounding on a grave. Why would I look for the living among the dead?

See, both connections and disconnections deserve the same responses. Awe. Respect for the mystery. Even I, a man who believes his gifts and his calling to be teaching people how to be in relationship — well, I can’t tell you much of anything about why some connections happen and some connections don’t happen and still others disintegrate.

The most terrible thing my therapist ever said to me was also the most important: “Steven, we’re alone. No one has anyone.”

Yikes-oi. (Sorry. This sort of thing happens when a GoyBoy tries to express himself forcefully in Yiddish.)

I hated what she said. Railed against it. Argued with it. She had thrown existential sand into the gas tank of my fine-tuned DeLorean of delusion. And my pricey car would go not one mile farther.

My therapist was right. And, as with every other time when she is right, it’s time for me to grow up. We’re alone. No one has anyone.

Strangely, this new truth, while initially a scalpel slashed across my chest without anesthetic, did not burden and depress me for long. Surrender to separateness and aloneness quickly began to create a new space in me. A space for … for …

… relief. A kind of peace. And, most precious, gratitude and humility. Relationship is a grace. A kind of miracle. Human communion emerges as a gift. An unmerited joy. Yes, there are ways of living more conducive to forging and maintaining lasting relationships than other ways of living. I’m not saying there’s nothing we can do. Just that, in the end, I no longer think I have earned or deserved the people who stand in the inner circle of my life.

I just give thanks.

We’re alone. No one has anyone.

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Human beings cannot be possessed. They cannot be apprehended. They can only be respected and enjoyed. Or respected and bid farewell. Relationship is mystery.

Who really sees you? Who gets you? If you need more than one hand to count those people, you are rich beyond your dreams.

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Individualism as ego overpride is not the solitary reflection of an authentic life –

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http://www.lvrj.com/view/steven-kalas-we-are-individuals-in-consequential-relationships-162688016.html

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http://www.lvrj.com/living/culture-s-approach-to-suffering-only-prolongs-pain-129608658.html

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And, for those kinds of sufferings/losses that can never be entirely healed, to bear it. To find meaning in it. To turn that suffering into some transformative work in the world.

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And the truth is this: The human journey includes suffering. No one comes to ask for help who isn’t suffering.

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But, here’s another truth: In any given time in your life, the number of people who actually, really, honestly want and

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are willing to grant you an engaged and healing audience for your suffering/loss is …

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small!! Or nonexistent!!

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Even people who sincerely love and adore you might find themselves ambivalent about really engaging and listening to the part of you that suffers. See, the people around us have egos, too. Their egos mobilize to protect them just like your ego does. “Cheer up … get over it … God has a plan … everybody is doing the best he or she can … don’t cry” — the felt motive for these messages is to help you.

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But each of these messages also contains the anxiety of the messenger:

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Please stop bothering and disturbing me by suffering.

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And that’s what most modern people do. They try to stop suffering. They “get over it.” They build layer upon layer of pretense and persona over their wounds, because it’s, well, the sociable thing to do. Most of us, then, suffer unconsciously. Because that’s the way we’ve been taught to suffer.

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http://www.lvrj.com/living/9146411.html

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Lots of people don’t want to be present to sadness — their own or anyone else’s.

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Other people would like to be present to their bereaved friends and family, but don’t know how.

We live in a culture where grief is treated as a disease to be “cured,” or a weakness cursed of shame or self-loathing.

Contrarily, grief is the holiest of human journeys.

One of my favorite Friedrich Nietzsche quotes is, “Everything holy requires a veil.” Now, modern Americans might think he means that we should keep things covered up because those things are shameful. Nope. He means that some things are so beautiful, so huge, so powerful, so naked, so intimate, that to gaze casually upon them would be injurious to their meaning and value. Injurious ultimately to us.

Grief is such a thing.

I concur with your observation that people around us are largely inept at befriending us in grief. Yet I also encourage people like you to remember to veil (protect and value) their grief. Keep the circle of confidants small. Pick two and no more than five people who will hear the depths of your pain.

There are two ways to read your question at the end. Literally you ask how you might numb the heartache. But I’m guessing you aren’t being literal. In fact, it’s not a question at all, is it? It reads more like an indignation. Like, how dare anyone ask you to numb the heartache! How dare the medical community suggest drugging your bereavement!

See, you know how precious your sadness is. A breathless, crushing burden, yes. But precious.

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https://curtisnarimatsu.wordpress.com/2012/08/17/alienation-i-dont-belong-and-estrangement-getting-dumped-because-i-dont-belong/

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alienation [I don’t belong] and estrangement [getting dumped because I don’t belong]

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Alienation & estrangement – the results of Loss [e.g. getting dumped] by your beloved [lifemate/soulmate]

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http://www.lvrj.com/blogs/kalas/_Retirement_leaves_time_for_pondering_self_relationships.html

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Question: What do all people seeking release from personal despair have in common?

Answer: They are suffering some combination of alienation and estrangement.

Alienation means a crisis of belonging. We are alien. We don’t belong.

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Estrangement means the painful disruption of the bonds of relationship. Interpersonal injuries and injustices. To become estranged is to become a stranger to the one we love and by whom we are loved.

I’m saying your use of the word “misfit” sounds like a crisis of alienation and estrangement.

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http://www.reviewjournal.com/columns-blogs/steven-kalas/western-religion-breeding-ground-neurosis

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When it comes to the question of the usefulness of guilt in shaping and inspiring a thriving human identity, I would say Western religion is, at once, beautiful, nutty and (potentially) pathological. Healthy religion knows these dangers. And psychologically healthy pilgrims embrace what is beautiful while keeping a keen watch on what is nutty or pathological.

Guilt is beautiful, holy, vital and important when it is healthy guilt. And healthy guilt is nothing more or less than the name of the grief we feel when we abandon our own values. The grief of estrangement and alienation. Healthy guilt, however miserable it feels, contains within itself a holy longing for reconciliation. (One prayer during the rosary, for example, is asking God to “give me a contrite heart.” Meaning, “Please give me the courage to let my heart break over the ways I have hurt others, etc.”) Catholicism — its rites, rituals and symbols — bears much beauty into the world to facilitate the blessings of healthy guilt, healthy shame.

The nutty or potentially pathological side of guilt happens when people, families or institutions (especially the church) peddle guilt to us with darker, perhaps unconscious motives. If you, for example, are threatened by another’s genius, gifts and “light” (envy!), then one way to dodge the threat is to instill in that person a grave, crippling self-doubt. An anxious, paralyzing self-consciousness forcing a default posture of apology to the world for daring to be him/herself.

Or, people/institutions instill guilt because they are projecting sadism. That is, they are reveling in the humiliation of sinners. Yes, some of our accusers are having a grand time!

Control, humiliation, hierarchy, authority, power — when discussions of guilt bear these darker motives, run away quick!

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Irony about Darwin is that though Darwin ended once and for all the “scientific” notion of racial white superiority over blacks/global slavery    http://experimentaltheology.blogspot.com/2014/07/saint-darwin.html    — nonetheless imperialist Whites/social darwinists/eugenicists incorrectly cited Darwin’s “survival of the fittest” to advance White “master race” tyranny.   This is why supposed antagonist Bryan railed vs. Scopes/Darrow in the “trial of the century” in that “evolution” ergo Darwinism propounded by Darrow trumped of/gloated racial White superiority over folks of color, something Scopes was naive about.   http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scopes_Trial

 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/On_the_Origin_of_Species#Publication_outside_Great_Britain

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lamarckism

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Erudite sage George Will’s oeuvre (sum-point) of federalism over fractured local power

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/shopping-has-changed-south-dakota-wants-in-on-the-action/2018/04/13/91ee0294-3e75-11e8-8d53-eba0ed2371cc_story.html?noredirect=on&utm_term=.a635071132f3

Shopping has changed. South Dakota wants in on the action.

A consumer checks out Cyber Monday sales

South Dakota has become what South Carolina once was — stubborn, pugnacious and wrong. In 1860, South Carolina became the first state to vote to secede. In 2016, South Dakota’s legislature picked a fight in the hope that the U.S. Supreme Court would reverse a prior decision, thereby handing the state a policy victory it failed to win in Congress.

South Dakota has enacted a law contradicting a 26-year-old court decision concerning interstate commerce, and a law Congress passed and extended 10 times. It wants to tax purchases that are made online from vendors that have no physical presence in the state. South Dakota wants to increase its revenue and mollify its Main Street merchants. On Tuesday, the court will hear oral arguments for and against South Dakota’s response to the greatest disruption of retailing since the Sears, Roebuck catalogue, more about which anon.

In 1992, in the Internet’s infancy, the court held that retailers are required to collect a state’s sales taxes only when the retailers have a “substantial nexus” — basically, a physical, brick-and-mortar presence — in the state where the item sold is purchased. Such a nexus would mean that the retailer benefits from, and should pay for, local government services. Absent such a nexus, however, states’ taxation of sales would violate the Constitution, which vests in Congress alone the power to impose such burdens on interstate commerce. Furthermore, Richard A. Epstein of the University of Chicago and New York University Law School, says the 14th Amendment’s due process clause (“No state shall . . . deprive any person of life, liberty or property, without due process of law”) is a guarantee of fundamental fairness “powerful enough to shield any party from taxation by a jurisdiction with which it does not interact.”

Internet commerce has burgeoned partly because many online retailers, by not collecting sales taxes, enjoy price advantages. This, however, is less valuable to them than their other advantages of convenience (no need to drive somewhere to shop) and choices (almost everything saleable is sold online). Such commerce could not have flourished if vendors bore the burden of deciphering and complying with the tax policies of 12,000 state and local taxing jurisdictions, with different goods exempted from taxation. So, in 1998 Congress enacted the Internet Tax Freedom Act. (It was made permanent in 2016.) This expresses Congress’s policy choice to prohibit state and local governments from imposing unique tax rules for Internet transactions.

The act, an exercise of Congress’s enumerated power to regulate interstate commerce, is intended to shield small Internet sellers from discriminatory taxes and compliance burdens. (Amazon pays sales taxes in all 45 states that have them. Amazon chief executive Jeffrey P. Bezos owns The Post.) In 1998, the ITFA passed the House by unanimous consent and the Senate 96 to 2. For revenue reasons, only four governors endorsed it. Now South Dakota is seeking the court’s permission for its extraterritorial grasping. It wants the court to overrule this congressional policy calculation: The social benefits of dynamic Internet commerce, with small companies enabled to compete with large ones, exceed the costs to traditional retailers, such as Sears, which once upon a time was a problem for then-traditional retailers.

Late in the 19th century, the Sears, Roebuck catalogue was a retailing response to what government had directly (the Homestead Act) and indirectly (government-subsidized railroads) created — vast, thinly populated swaths of rural America where farm families had few if any shopping opportunities. By 1898, the catalogue had 583 pages. In 1907, when the nation’s population was 87 million, Sears mailed out 3 million catalogues. In 1927, the nation of 119 million received 75 million Sears catalogues and other mailings, helped by another government program — rural free delivery. Some traditional downtown retailers were annoyed, not for the last time: Walmart and other “big box” stores were coming to the edge of town.

South Dakota’s impertinent law reflects this fact: Governments often are reflexively reactionary when new technologies discomfort established interests with which the political class has comfortable relations of mutual support. The state’s sales-tax revenue has grown faster than the state’s economy even as Internet retailing has grown. Its brick-and-mortar retailing survived Sears, Roebuck, and then survived Walmart (often better than Sears, Roebuck has). Indeed, many brick-and-mortar retailers are now bricks-and-clicks enterprises, offering online shopping.

Traditional retailing will, like Walmart (which is now being challenged by Amazon), prosper or not depending on market forces, meaning Americans’ preferences. State governments should not try to prevent this wholesome churning from going where it will.

Read more from George F. Will’s archive or follow him on Facebook.

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above case decided in favor of States over Federalism   —

http://www.scotusblog.com/2018/06/opinion-analysis-court-expands-states-ability-to-require-internet-retailers-to-collect-sales-tax/

(Majority opinion) Kennedy discussed at some length the changes to the national economy and retailing brought about by the internet.

“The Internet’s prevalence and power have changed the dynamics of the national economy,” he said, noting that mail-order sales in the United States in 1992 totaled some $180 billion, while e-commerce sales last year were estimated to be $453.5 billion. This expansion has increased the revenue shortfall faced by the states, he continued, citing estimates that range from $8 billion to $33 billion.

The retailers’ arguments based on reliance interests in the Quill rule were unpersuasive because the physical-presence rule has not been as clear and easy to apply as suggested, Kennedy said. Nationwide sales-tax collection may impose a burden on smaller sellers, he said, but “eventually, software that is available at a reasonable cost may make it easier for small businesses to cope with these problems.”

“And in all events, Congress may legislate to ad­dress these problems if it deems it necessary and fit to do so,” Kennedy said.

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(Dissent)

“If stare decisis applied with special force in Quill, it should be an even greater impediment to overruling precedent now, particularly since this Court in Quill tossed the ball into Congress’s court, for acceptance or not as that branch elects,” the chief justice said.

Roberts noted that Congress has been considering whether to alter the physical-presence rule, and “nothing in today’s decision precludes Congress from continuing to seek a legislative solution. But by suddenly changing the ground rules, the Court may have waylaid Congress’s consideration of the issue.”

The majority “proceeds with an inexplicable sense of urgency,” the chief justice said, and it “breezily disregards the costs that its decision will impose on retailers.”

There are complex distinctions made in more than 10,000 taxing jurisdictions, he said.

“New Jersey knitters pay sales tax on yarn purchased for art projects, but not on yarn earmarked for sweaters,” Roberts said, while Texas imposes a sales tax on plain deodorant but not on deodorant with antiperspirant, and Illinois treats Twix and Snickers bars differently for sales-tax purposes.

“The Court is of course correct that the nation’s economy has changed dramatically since the time that Bellas Hess and Quill roamed the earth,” Roberts said. “I fear the Court today is compounding its past error by trying to fix it in a totally different era. … I would let Congress decide whether to depart from the physical-presence rule that has governed this area for half a century.”

 

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Big Government issue:   

Factions whose affluence makes them desirable taxpayers and whose political influence makes them politically potent will join governments in seizing the property of low-income citizens who are not as lucrative for local governments.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/hollywoods-newest-action-star-the-constitutions-taking-clause/2018/04/18/1d7ae45c-4264-11e8-ad8f-27a8c409298b_story.html?noredirect=on&utm_term=.8cbba298ca26


The home of Susette Kelo in the Fort Trumbull section of New London, Conn., in 2005. (Jack Sauer/AP)
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Coming soon to a cinema near you — you can make this happen; read on — is a bite-your-nails true-story thriller featuring heroes, villains and a history-making struggle over . . . the Constitution’s takings clause. Next Feb. 24, “Little Pink House” will win the Oscar for best picture if Hollywood’s political preening contains even a scintilla of sincerity about speaking truth to power.

In 1998, New London, Conn., was experiencing hard times. Its government decided, as governments always do, that it wanted more revenue. A private entity, the New London Development Corp. (NLDC), wanted to entice the Pfizer pharmaceutical corporation, which was about to introduce a popular blue pill, to locate a research facility on land adjacent to a blue-collar residential neighborhood. The city empowered the NLDC to wield the awesome, potentially life-shattering power of eminent domain if, as happened, it failed to persuade all the homeowners to sell for an upscale private development to “complement” Pfizer’s facility. Some, led by Susette Kelo (played by Catherine Keener, two-time Oscar nominee), refused.

Kelo’s tormentor is an oily NLDC operative (played by Emmy nominee Jeanne Tripplehorn) who is fluent in the pitter-patter of crony capitalism: The NLDC will make New London “vital and hip” using a public-private “collaboration” wherein uprooted homeowners will be “part of our team” because “social justice and economic development go hand in hand” as the NLDC integrates “the infrastructure of large corporations to the brass-tacks needs of our city’s most . . .”

Kelo’s plight got the attention of the Institute for Justice (IJ), a.k.a the fourth branch of government, nonprofit libertarian litigators who prod the third branch (the judiciary) to police the excesses of the other two. IJ lost, but won.

Kelo lost 4 to 3 in Connecticut’s Supreme Court and 5 to 4 in the U.S. Supreme Court, which accepted New London’s sophistical argument that virtually erased the Constitution’s circumscription of government’s eminent- domain power. This used to be limited by the notably explicit Fifth Amendment, which says “nor shall private property be taken for public use , without just compensation” (emphasis added). The Constitution’s framers intended the adjective “public” to do what the rest of the Bill of Rights does: limit government’s power. Government could take private property only for the purpose of creating things — roads, bridges, tunnels, public buildings — directly owned by government or primarily used by the general public. In 1954, however, to facilitate slum clearance in the District, the concept of “public use” was stretched to encompass eradicating “blight,” an expansion exploited nationwide by corporations in cahoots with city governments that found blight in cracked sidewalks or loose awning supports.

To seize Kelo’s pink house, New London did not assert blight. Instead, it argued that “public use” is synonymous with “public benefit,” and that the public would benefit more from Pfizer paying more taxes than would Kelo and her neighbors. During oral arguments, Justice Antonin Scalia distilled New London’s argument: “You can take from A to give to B if B pays more taxes.” In a dissent joined by Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist and Justices Clarence Thomas and Scalia, Justice Sandra Day O’Connor warned that the decision’s consequences “will not be random”: Factions whose affluence makes them desirable taxpayers and whose political influence makes them politically potent will join governments in seizing the property of low-income citizens who are not as lucrative for local governments.

By getting the U.S. Supreme Court’s attention, and eliciting strong dissents that highlight the horribleness of the majority’s decision, Kelo and IJ ignited national revulsion that has produced new state limitations on eminent domain, limitations that reestablish the framers’ intentions.

The movie, representing the vanishingly small category of “Movies for Grown-ups,” has just debuted in New London, where government economic planning ended predictably badly: Pfizer came, exhausted its subsidies and then departed, leaving a vacant lot where the pink house once stood. View the trailer and consult watch.LittlePinkHouseMovie.com to learn about showings elsewhere. Organizations or groups of about 75 people can go to TUGG.com to book a theater and receive help promoting the showing. People who send their email addresses to LittlePinkArmy.com will be contacted and helped through this process. This bypasses Hollywood’s normal distribution procedures, but the movie industry might benefit from it.

Does Hollywood want to reverse the four-year ratings decline (43.7 million viewers in 2014; 26.5 million this year) of the Academy Awards telecast? Imagine the viewership for a contest of David (“Little Pink House”) against a gaggle of Goliaths (big-budget best-picture nominees boosted by major studios’ promotional budgets).

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https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/gorsuch-strikes-a-blow-for-constitutional-equilibrium/2018/04/20/78139ef6-43f2-11e8-bba2-0976a82b05a2_story.html?noredirect=on&utm_term=.ef6141c91fb2

Vague laws “invite the exercise of arbitrary power” by “leaving the people in the dark about what the law demands and allowing prosecutors and courts to make it up.” The lack of “precise and sufficient certainty” (criteria stipulated by the English jurist William Blackstone, whose writings influenced the Constitution’s framers) invites “more unpredictability and arbitrariness” than is constitutional. Furthermore, the crux of America’s constitutional architecture, the separation of powers, is implicated.

Last week, one week after the first anniversary of Justice Neil M. Gorsuch’s ascension to the Supreme Court, he delivered an opinion that was excellent as it pertained to the case at issue, and momentous in its implications pertaining to the institutional tangle known as the administrative state. If he can persuade his fellow court conservatives to see why they were mistaken in disagreeing with him, and if he can persuade his liberal colleagues to follow the logic of their decision with which he concurred, the judiciary will begin restoring constitutional equilibrium. It will limit Congress’s imprecise legislating that requires excessive unguided improvising by all those involved in seeing that the laws are “faithfully” executed.

In 1992, when James Dimaya, a Philippine citizen, was 13, he became a lawful permanent resident of the United States, where, unfortunately, his behavior has been less than lawful: In 2007 and 2009, he was convicted of residential burglary. The Department of Homeland Security says he should be deported because he committed a “crime of violence,” hence covered by a portion of immigration law that, after listing specific crimes (rape, murder, etc.), adds a catchall category of crimes involving “a substantial risk that physical force against the person or property of another may be used in the course of committing the offense.” How are judges supposed to apply this?

Writing for the majority in a 5-to-4 decision — and joined by Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Stephen G. Breyer and Sonia Sotomayor (with Gorsuch concurring in the judgment and much of the opinion) — Justice Elena Kagan wrote that the law’s category, a “crime of violence,” is so indeterminate (“fuzzy,” she said) that deporting Dimaya under it would violate the Constitution’s “due process of law” guarantee. Vague laws beget two evils that are related: They do not give citizens reasonably clear notice of what behavior is proscribed or prescribed. And they give — actually, require of — judges and law-enforcement officials excessive discretion in improvising a fuzzy law’s meaning. In agreeing with this (and disagreeing with Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. and Justices Anthony M. Kennedy, Clarence Thomas and Samuel A. Alito Jr.), Gorsuch wrote:

Vague laws “invite the exercise of arbitrary power” by “leaving the people in the dark about what the law demands and allowing prosecutors and courts to make it up.” The lack of “precise and sufficient certainty” (criteria stipulated by the English jurist William Blackstone, whose writings influenced the Constitution’s framers) invites “more unpredictability and arbitrariness” than is constitutional. Furthermore, the crux of America’s constitutional architecture, the separation of powers, is implicated. All legislative power is vested in Congress. The judicial power, Gorsuch wrote, “does not license judges to craft new laws” but only to discern and follow an existing law’s prescribed course. With the fuzzy “crime of violence” category, Congress abdicated its “responsibilities for setting the standards of the criminal law.” So, allowing vague laws would allow Congress “to hand off the job of lawmaking.” Hence such laws not only illegitimately transfer power to police and prosecutors, but also would “leave it all to a judicial hunch.”

The principle Gorsuch enunciates here regarding one provision of immigration law is a scythe sharp enough to slice through many practices of the administrative state, which translates often vague congressional sentiments into binding rules — a practice indistinguishable from legislating. Gorsuch’s principle is also pertinent to something pernicious concerning which he has hitherto expressed wholesome skepticism: “Chevron deference.”

This is the policy (named for the 1984 case in which the Supreme Court propounded it) whereby courts are required to defer to administrative agencies’ interpretations of “ambiguous” laws when the interpretations are “reasonable.” Gorsuch has criticized this emancipation of the administrative state from judicial supervision as “a judge-made doctrine for the abdication of judicial duty.” It also is an incentive for slovenly lawmaking by a Congress either too lazy or risk-averse to be precise in making policy choices, and so lacking in institutional pride that it complacently sloughs off its Article I powers onto Article II entities. Gorsuch wants Article III courts to circumscribe this disreputable behavior.

Gorsuch represents the growing ascendancy of one kind of conservative jurisprudence, “judicial engagement,” over another kind, “judicial deference.” Many conservatives have embraced populism where it least belongs, in judicial reasoning. They have advocated broad judicial deference to decisions because they emanate from majoritarian institutions and processes. Progressives favor such deference because it liberates executive power from congressional direction or judicial supervision. Gorsuch, a thinking person’s conservative, declines to be complicit in this, which raises this question: When has a progressive justice provided the fifth vote joining four conservative colleagues?

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https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/america-is-about-to-get-more-law-abiding/2018/05/16/0ce93166-5871-11e8-b656-a5f8c2a9295d_story.html?utm_term=.32be465fd66f

“Prohibition” has been lifted off sports betting

Repeal of Prohibition in 1933 instantly reduced crime by reducing the number of criminalized activities, including some that millions of Americans considered victimless activities and none of the government’s business. Now, America is going to become more law-abiding, the Supreme Court having said that the federal government cannot prohibit states from legalizing what Americans have been doing anyway with at least 150 billion of their dollars annually. This figure (almost five times the combined revenues of MLB, the NFL, the NBA and the NHL; 14 times the movie industry’s domestic ticket sales) is a guess and might be much less than the actual sum that Americans wager on sports.

In 1992, when sports betting was illegal in most states, Congress, prompted by New Jersey Democratic Sen. Bill Bradley (Princeton all-American basketball player, Olympian, New York Knick), passed the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act (PASPA). This did not do what Congress has the power to do: Because of the court’s permissive construing of Congress’s power to regulate all sorts of more or less economic activities for all sorts of reasons, Congress could criminalize sports gambling. Instead, however, it gave New Jersey, alone among the 46 states that did not have such betting, one year to adopt it, after which New Jersey would be forbidden to do so.

Illegal sports betting was estimated to involve only $25 billion annually when PASPA was passed. Its subsequent burgeoning is redundant evidence that restraining a popular appetite with a statute is akin to lassoing a locomotive with a cobweb, which should chasten busybody governments. While one should formally frown upon the lawlessness of wagering Americans, their anarchic tendencies are, on balance, wholesome.

Also in 1992, the Supreme Court began enunciating the “anti-commandeering” doctrine: The federal government may not pursue its objectives by requiring states to use, or refrain from using, their resources for those objectives. The Constitution’s 10th Amendment (“The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people”) means, the court has held, that “while Congress has substantial powers to govern the Nation directly, including in areas of intimate concern to the States, the Constitution has never been understood to confer upon Congress the ability to require the states to govern according to Congress’ instructions.”

In a 2011 referendum, New Jersey voters strongly approved sports betting; two months later, the legislature approved such betting in casino sports books and at horse tracks. After courts twice held that New Jersey was violating PASPA, the state appealed to the Supreme Court, saying: “Never before has federal law been enforced to command a state to give effect to a state law that the state has chosen to repeal.”

On Monday the court ruled, 6 to 3, in favor of New Jersey and three principles of good government that are threatened by federal commandeering. Writing for the majority, and joined by Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. and Justices Anthony M. Kennedy, Clarence Thomas, Elena Kagan and Neil M. Gorsuch, Samuel A. Alito Jr. said: The anti-commandeering rule protects individual liberty by maintaining a “healthy balance of power” between the states and the federal government. The rule “promotes political accountability” because “voters who like or dislike the effects” of a regulation “know who to credit or blame.” And the rule “prevents Congress from shifting the costs of regulation to the states.”

This season, a National Hockey League team began playing in Las Vegas, where the NFL’s Oakland Raiders will relocate in 2020. Because of what the court did Monday, soon a majority of states, with a majority of the nation’s population, probably will be regulating and taxing legalized sports gambling. The unembarrassable National Collegiate Athletic Association has said without blushing that sports betting threatens “student-athlete well-being and the integrity of athletic competition.” Actually, an infusion of run-of-the-mill back-alley bookies in soiled raincoats might elevate college basketball’s moral tone.

Just after PASPA was enacted, 56 percent of Americans opposed legalized betting on professional sports events. A quarter of a century later, 55 percent approve. The nation’s most insistent promoters of gambling are state governments that run lotteries. Law lags morals, but not forever.

The professional sports leagues were on the losing side Monday, but they will find ways to profit from betting on their products. Mark Cuban, owner of the NBA’s Dallas Mavericks and a maverick himself, thinks intensified fan interest will double franchise values across baseball, football, basketball and hockey. Want to bet against him? Go ahead.

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George Will says the U.S. Supreme Court overreached its bounds in Roe v. Wade         https://abcnews.go.com/ThisWeek/story?id=132567&page=1

[Roe v. Wade 1973  is] the most imprudent act of judicial power since the Dred Scott decision.

In Dred Scott, the Supreme Court tried to settle the slavery controversy. Instead it hastened civil war.

With the Roe v. Wade decision, the court tried to end the debate about abortion.

Instead, it inflamed the issue and embittered our politics — because the court, by judicial fiat, abruptly ended what had been a democratic process of accommodation and compromise on abortion policy.

States Were Dealing With It

Before the court suddenly discovered in the constitution a virtually unlimited right to abortion, many state legislatures were doing what legislatures are supposed to do in a democracy: They were debating and revising laws to reflect changing community thinking.

In the five years before 1973, 16 states, with 41 percent of the nation’s population — including then-Governor Reagan’s California — liberalized their abortion laws.

But reversal would not make abortion illegal. It would just restore abortion as a matter for states to regulate. And probably no state would outlaw first trimester abortions, which are almost 90 percent of all abortions.

Changing Culture

Whether you like it or not, the culture has changed a lot since 1973. Today, abortion ends more than one in five pregnancies. Abortion is one of the most common surgical procedures.

The widely exercised right to abortion is not about to be extinguished. But neither is the debate about abortion, which continues to trouble thoughtful people.

Unfortunately, [in Roe v. Wade]  the Supreme Court said to the American people: Shut up. Pipe down. Your debate about abortion is pointless, because we will decide policy.

Thus, did the Supreme Court diminish American democracy.

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Nonetheless, cogent Will has a detractor here       http://www.libertylawsite.org/2016/08/09/george-wills-constitution/

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Liberals should not swagger (loose lips sink ships ergo animus-prejudice)

 

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/there-will-be-more-wedding-cake-cases/2018/06/06/8bd4a50c-68e6-11e8-9e38-24e693b38637_story.html?utm_term=.e36705f8ad00

There will be more wedding cake cases

“Loose lips sink ships” was a World War II slogan warning Americans against inadvertently disclosing important secrets, such as troop ships’ sailing schedules. On Monday, the Supreme Court showed that loose lips can sink cases.

In Colorado in 2012, a Christian baker declined the request of a same-sex couple to decorate a cake for a reception celebrating their marriage in Massachusetts. The baker said that compelling him to put his expressive activity of cake artistry in the service of an act his faith condemns — and that was not legal in Colorado — would violate his First Amendment right to free speech, which includes the freedom not to speak, and to the free exercise of religion (which also is his basis for refusing to make Halloween cakes).

Rather than find, as would not have been burdensome, bakers with no objections to their request, the couple abandoned what once was the live-and-let-live spirit of the gay rights movement. In the truculent spirit of this era, they sicced the Colorado Civil Rights Commission on the baker. It said he violated the state’s law against sexual-orientation discrimination.

On Monday, the court held 7 to 2 for the baker, but only for him . Writing for the court, Justice Anthony M. Kennedy (with Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. and Justices Clarence Thomas, Stephen G. Breyer, Samuel A. Alito Jr., Elena Kagan and Neil M. Gorsuch joining in the judgment) concluded that the Civil Rights Commission manifested animus regarding the baker’s religious beliefs. For example, a notably obtuse member said that “despicable” rhetoric about freedom of religion had been used to justify slavery and the Holocaust.

The nation remains resolutely committed to the public accommodations section of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, which Colorado law anticipated in an 1885 law: If you open your doors for business, you must serve all who enter. Furthermore, it is maddeningly problematic to begin carving out exemptions from obedience to laws of general applicability that are neutral regarding religion. Wedding planners, photographers, flower arrangers, even chauffeurs who have religious objections to same-sex weddings can claim, with varying degrees of plausibility, that their activities are “expressive” and therefore their varying degrees of “participation” in religious events implicate the two First Amendment provisions the baker invoked.

In this case, the court prudently avoided trying to promulgate a limiting principle that would distinguish essentially expressive conduct from that with merely negligible or incidental expressive elements. But because the principle remains unformulated, other cases will come to the court lacking the sort of convenient escape hatch that the court found in the commission’s loose lips. Looking down the road, Kennedy on Monday warned that “there are no doubt innumerable goods and services that no one could argue implicate the First Amendment.”

First Amendment protections of freedom of speech are now more comprehensively attacked than ever before. The Alien and Sedition Acts of 1790s (which were allowed to expire), the abuses of the post-World War I “Red Scare” and the McCarthyism of the early 1950s arose from temporary public fevers, and ended when the fevers broke. Today’s attacks, emanating from authoritarian intellectuals, will not be as transitory as a mere political mood because they are theoretical: They argue that free speech is a chimera — speech often is a mere manifestation of an individual’s retrograde socialization, a.k.a. “false consciousness,” hence it is not morally serious and does not merit protection. Or they argue that free speech is only contingently important — it should be “balanced” against superior claims, such as community harmony or listeners’ serenity.

Because attacks on freedom of speech are today ubiquitous and aggressive, its defenders understandably, but sometimes more reflexively than reflectively, support any claim that this freedom is importantly implicated, however tangentially, in this or that dispute. A danger in the cake case was that victory for the baker would make First Amendment law incoherent, even absurd: Expressive activities merit some constitutional protection, but not everything expressive is as important as speech, which America’s foundational political document protects because speech communicates ideas for public persuasion.

Friends of the First Amendment should not be impatient for the court to embark on drawing ever-finer distinctions about which commercial transactions, by which kinds of believers, involving which kinds of ceremonies, implicate the Constitution’s free speech and free exercise guarantees. Taking religious advice, the court on Monday acted on the principle that “sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof,” which means: Cope with today’s ample troubles and cope with tomorrow’s when they arrive, as surely they will.

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Actor George Raft actually a splendid dancer  

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Out-of-this-world raspy textured vocal mastery

 

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Clapton’s southern blues derivation via Freddie King’s modernist electric sound  —

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Freddie_King#Playing_style_and_technique

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