Out Of The Armchair: County Collecting In Missouri

Last year I visited every county in Tennessee. This year I visited all 114 counties in the less-than-great-but-moderately-decent state of Missouri. With Tennessee I made a point to avoid interstates and really get the feel of each county — this time I didn’t bother with that to the same extent. Nor did I need to, as Missouri’s counties blend together, whereas each Tennessee county is a little unique.

Missouri map 1

In my own judgment, I would say that Missouri could be divided into three distinct regions: the southern mountains, the northern corn fields, and the eastern river lands. Each of these has a major anchor city: Springfield, Kansas City and St Louis.

“But what about Columbia and the eastern Ozarks and –”

I’m not trying to crunch census numbers. I’m talking about geography. And anyway, Columbia doesn’t have a metro area like Springfield does, especially if you include Joplin.

Springfield is “the Queen City of the Ozarks”, Kansas City is very much a corn-and-steers city, and St Louis County is literally defined by three rivers. Columbia is the dead-center of the state, and they have a thug university where you’ll get stabbed, but otherwise it’s the middle of nowhere.

Missouri map 2

There are subtle differences in the architecture in each region, if you’re inclined to pay attention to something like that. I found this very interesting. The eastern river and southern mountains had the architecture that looked the most like “The South”.

The eastern river region could be very hilly, especially in the north. This is where Mark Twain is from, and Tom Sawyer described caves on the side of the river. Twain’s hometown of Hannibal made a big show of how Tom Sawyer-y they were, but you could tell the architecture goes back to the 1940s. Clarksville however looks exactly like how Mark Twain described Tom Sawyer’s village. It had a gorgeous old main street leading to the river, and on the hillside above it were old antebellum houses.

But if you go one county west of the river, and it’s totally flat.

In the southern part of this region, it’s mostly flat farmland. The Ozarks sort of butt against the Mississippi River south of St Louis, but then they cut away further south. Southwestern St Louis County in the lower slopes of the mountains, and the rest of the county is pretty hilly. Jefferson County directly to the south is considered entirely to be in the Ozarks, but I don’t think that’s totally accurate. But as with Appalachia, there can be some debate about where mountain ranges actually begin or end. On I-44 heading into St Louis, you will go downhill for some 20 or 30 miles as you leave the mountains.

missouri map 4

missouri map 3

The Ozark mountains are mostly plateaus, so it often doesn’t feel like you’re in the mountains. Then you’ll come upon these huge vistas and realize they put the highway on the edge of a cliff. It was nighttime when I got to Branson, but it seemed like the entertainment strip was on top of a narrow ridge you could easily fall off of.

It seemed like Springfield was very spread out, that you didn’t have the mass of sprawling suburbs like in most cities.

Another thing that stuck out to me is that the Ozarks are mostly divided into two plateaus. Generations ago, geographers took the effort to make this distinction and map everything out. Today I doubt very few of the locals are aware of this. As I drove through, it seemed that the farther west into the Ozarks, the more flat and less wooded the terrain became and the more ranches I saw. But it’s not like I could draw a map. This knowledge that was so painstakingly synthesized by our ancestors has been lost with the advent of the highway system.

The northern farmlands have the most historic connection to the old Confederacy, particularly along the Missouri River and the broader area around Kansas City. The Civil War in Missouri was absolutely insane. Eventually the federal government just decided to evacuate and burn down four counties for no reason. Learning about it made me realize how Civil War history tends to focus on the Atlantic states.

Suffice it to say that I don’t have any sympathy for bleeding Kansas. Those red-legged bastards got everything they deserved. I hope Donald Trump rounds up all the Somalians and Aztecs and dumps them in Kansas so that they can feel the strength of our diversity.

In western Missouri between the Ozarks and Kansas City there was some really nice “Big Sky Country”. It looks like what I always imagined Wyoming looks like. There were definitely more cattle and horse ranches than corn. I guess this is point in the Heartland states that “the Old West” and cowboys begin, like a prelude to the Southwest. Having driven through Oklahoma earlier this year, I would definitely consider it to be Southwest.

The northern towns weren’t as run-down and forgotten as those in southern Illinois, but they were a strong competitor. There were still some absolute treasures I very much wish I had grown up in, even though this part of the state seemed the most economically depressed.

I made it to Iowa. I drove three miles in, pulled over, and got out with the car still running. I then stood upon Iowa soil, contemplated what it means to be in Iowa, reached down to feel Iowa, and then went back home.

Then another time I just missed my exit and ended up in Iowa by mistake.

I really hate that I grew up in Generic White Suburbs in Mid-Size City, USA and attended Your Community Mega-Church with Standard-Issue Broken Family. I would give anything to have grown up in Chillicothe, Missouri with a nuclear family. I would trade the last eight years of Orthodox Christianity and have remained a dumb evangelical if I could have had that childhood.

Like if instead of whoring around with another pastor’s wife at a missions conference, had my Baptist pastor father moved to Chillicothe, Missouri, and then my mother homeschooled us (and if she didn’t have an IQ barely above your common negro) and took us to the park on Highway 65 and always cooked dinner with fresh ingredients from the farmer’s market and didn’t buy into the low-fat diet the FDA was pushing. And we could all walk to the local community Baptist church and sing beautiful old hymns instead of soft rock worship pop and we would only use the King James Version. And I would have had the normal emotional-social development everyone else got, and so I wouldn’t have been at odds with all the other children.

It probably would have cost me ten IQ points (I firmly believe that childhood trauma positively affects IQ), and I wouldn’t be an Orthodox Christian today or have a blog or do anything noteworthy with my life beyond selling insurance to farmers, but I would trade everything for that.

Notable small towns in Missouri that I particularly liked:

  • Clarksville
  • Ironton
  • Glasgow
  • Chillicothe
  • Fulton
  • Pacific
  • Camdenton
  • Sainte Genevieve
  • Rolla
  • Lebanon
  • Adrian
  • All of Jefferson County

And probably some more that I can’t remember. It was a lot of night driving, and the interstate is just a lot of franchise restaurants anyway. So I’m not saying that Sikeston isn’t worth noticing — just that I didn’t notice it beyond the sign on the road telling me which gas stations are available.

So this was a lot less rewarding than my Tennessee travels, but I’m not from Missouri, so I don’t really care. I’m a transient migrant here to absorb their resources and move on.

I also found that there were a lot of potentially interesting things I skipped because I was hurrying along to finish before sundown. So I feel like, while I saw a lot of hills and fields, I didn’t really see Missouri. I am probably over-thinking this point.

This realization bothered me so much that I went back to see several cities in the southern river counties that I had glossed over on the interstate. It turns out that Sikeston isn’t worth noticing after all.

Is Missouri part of “The South”? No, not at all. In fact, the bootheel was supposed to be part of Arkansas, but the people complained that they have more in common with the people further north up the river.

I make a point to pay attention to accents. Throughout Missouri people had a bland American accent, even in the southernmost part of the mountains. Then a mile across the Arkansas state line the people have the thickest southern twang. It seemed that in western “Big Sky” Missouri people might have had a variant on the stereotypical redneck/cowboy accent.

Missouri had slaves because they had fertile farmland, not because they had old aristocracy and landed gentry and hard-knucked mountain men. I mean, yes, they had some of that for sure, but it’s not the same. You can’t quantify culture. Delaware also had slaves, and no one except the US Census considers that to be “The South”.

Missourians don’t even have the right to work. Despite being heavily Republican, Missouri is also heavily union. Even in rural Ozark counties, you will see signs in people’s yards saying “Proud Union Home”, as though a lack of agency isn’t a mark of shame. The South is mostly Celtic-descent, and Celts hate authority.

Missourians largely don’t care about college football. For months I looked forward to Mizzou playing Tennessee so that I could be a jerk to my co-workers, but when the time came, almost no one cared.

Furthermore, you can buy liquor at gas stations, which is insane. Whereas the South historically and to this day has a lot of dry counties. I asked someone at a gas station what time they quit selling beer, and he said he didn’t understand the question.

Another major difference between Missouri and the South is that the South doesn’t have race riots.

However, Missouri is definitely the Bible Belt, even more so than the actual Southern states.

People here aren’t bad drivers — they are asshole drivers. They do this thing where if you’re going too slowly, they’ll get on your tail and flash their lights at you, as though that makes me want to do them any favors. They will ride your tail and flash their brights even if it’s pouring rain at night and they could easily pass you.

One time I watched eight people run a red light just because they could. You’ll miss your exit on the interstate because no one will let you over. I hate them all. They deserve their Muslims.

My theory is that it’s the descendants of the Germanic immigrants. Germanic people are bitter and self-absorbed. The mid-Atlantic is the most grumpy region for the same reason.

I had barbeque all over Missouri. I mean, it was maybe half a dozen places, but they were from various regions. There was some of the worst barbeque I’ve ever had, and a few that were extremely decent. My guess would be an 80-20 split between the horrific and the passable. I’m told that Kansas City barbeque is “90% garbage and 10% out of this world”, which is about what I would have guessed.

The gas stations were mostly owned by White people. Back-country North Carolina was full of Hindus and Aztecs, but I didn’t see many of those in rural Missouri. The White flight suburbs of St Louis County are definitely full of Hindus and Moslems, but I see almost no strip mall Mexican restaurants in St Louis County.

Despite all of my Missouri travels, while I’ve been through Kansas City, I never actually went to Kansas City. The internet says that there’s a zoo and some kind of off-brand SeaWorld. There’s some history and music museums that are probably glorified tax scams like most non-profits. I don’t know why museums exist in the age of Wikipedia.

There is also, and this isn’t even me being racist, the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum. That’s what it’s called in a day when the president won’t even use the phrase “Black people” because it sounds too outdated. Are White people allowed to call the museum by its name? Will you get stabbed for saying it? Currently KC has the fifth highest murder rate in the country. Do White people there look over their shoulder and then whisper, “I’d really like to tour the n-word baseball museum”? Because you know that Blacks don’t care about that history anymore than they care about Robert Johnson or Chuck Berry. Black history — and any Black music older than a couple months — is for White people.

The Mormons have a bunch of stuff in KC, but I’ve always thought it was dumb how Protestants will tour the Vatican and marvel at its beauty. So I make a point to not care about what the Mormons did in Missouri.

KC sounds like Memphis Midwest. I’m pretty sure I would just wander semi-drunk around downtown trying to see if the barbeque is worth anything and listening to local musicians pretending to keep alive a dead genre for White tourists. And then months later I would decide to make a second visit to see the museums, but all I would do is spend $30 on a plate of soul food for White tourists at the same restaurant I went to the first time and then walk around downtown heavily buzzed listening to live music by failed rappers who realized they could make a career singing R&B cover versions of CCR songs. Again, just like Memphis.

While on the subject of music, for those of you who know what I’m referring to, bebop was a misguided movement that should have never happened. There were exactly two musicians in it worth anything: Charlie Parker and Thelonius Monk. Everyone else was a hack selling noise to stupid White people who thought it was exotic. Some things never change.

*****

Where should I visit next? The most logical choice is Illinois, but I’ve already been there far more than I ever planned in my life. Illinois is a mass of empty land, and occasionally there will be a little woods or stream or town where you can buy crack and get shot.
I was sort of working on North Carolina before I moved to Missouri. I had half of the Appalachian counties.

I really want to do Arkansas, Louisiana and Kentucky, but each of those would require taking a week off of work and saving up several hundreds of dollars.

I probably won’t do another county collecting excursion. This one left me kind of disappointed. It reminded me of graduating college, that you have all this information you planned to horde, and when it’s finally over I didn’t even attend my graduation or pick up the diploma for several months.

Actually, I think I’m going to quit this blog altogether.

I turn 30 in less than a year. I think I should leave Blair Naso in my 20s and in this decade. I’m out of things to say, and I’ve slowly lost interest in this blog. I rarely write it anymore. Occasionally I’ll have a burst of inspiration and write eight articles in a few days, and then I’ll space them out over several weeks. But really, I don’t think about this anymore. If I ever publish a book, I’ll try to let you guys know.

I might publish another blog post about the above thought on how, looking back almost a decade later, my conversion to Orthodox Christianity was because I couldn’t fit with the evangelicals and because of childhood  trauma  and not because I took a courageous examination of truth at any cost.

There’s a line from Bojack Horseman where the racehorse in the movie says, “People confuse greatness for goodness.” Sometimes people on the internet tell me I’m a good person, that I’m a real Christian. And maybe I’m better than average, but you don’t want to grow up to be like me. I’m bitter and lonely, and I spent the last ten years trying very hard to not be bitter and lonely, and while I’ve gotten slightly less bitter, I’m even more lonely.

Don’t be a Blair Naso. I type this in the dead of the night because I can’t sleep. I have no internet. The room is totally dark aside from this computer. I live in a slum far away from home. The only family member I talk to is my mother, and that’s mostly because I feel bad for her. I write this blog because I’m bored with life, and people think I must be some kind of guiding light to save America and deliver truth in a world that accepts either no truth or a substitute for truth, but really I’m just a directionless millennial bleeding out from emotional wounds. My hobbies are driving around rural highways alone in the dead of the night and texting racist memes to my friends. I’m not a prophet. I’m not courageous. I’m not a culture warrior. I’m a bitter, lonely, racist alcoholic with a small internet following.

I don’t know what you should do with your life. I don’t really know what I should have been differently with my own life, as all of this seems to have been inevitable. But don’t be an Austin.

Creating A Vocabulary: Defining Masculinity And Femininity

There’s a lot of talk about being a “real man”. Not much talk about being a “real woman”, and any attempt at that discussion brings a wall of hatred. But we’re going to do it anyway.

So what is the essence of masculinity and femininity? These, I believe, are character traits. Platonic ideals that one should strive for. And it’s what the other sex is most attracted to, so it’s something you should pursue. Androgyny should be considered a horrible sin. The Bible has no shortage of direct prescriptions for what men and women should be like. For example, Titus 2:

1 But as for you, speak the things which are proper for sound doctrine: 2 that the older men be sober, reverent, temperate, sound in faith, in love, in patience; 3 the older women likewise, that they be reverent in behavior, not slanderers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things— 4 that they admonish the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, 5 to be discreet, chaste, homemakers, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be blasphemed. 6 Likewise, exhort the young men to be sober-minded, 7 in all things showing yourself to be a pattern of good works; in doctrine showing integrity, reverence, incorruptibility, 8 sound speech that cannot be condemned, that one who is an opponent may be ashamed, having nothing evil to say of you. [NKJV]

Notice there is not one standard for all adults. The young men are taught one thing, and the young women are taught something else, which includes discretion and home-making (“home-watching” in the original Greek).

So clearly the Bible has different roles for men and women.

As for creating definitions, masculinity is about power and femininity is about beauty, in the broadest sense of those terms. These are not merely external traits but internal as well.

A “real man” is a man who is able to control things, whatever that may be like. All women adore a fascist, as Sylvia Plath said.

Women don’t have beliefs — only contexts. It is the men that St Paul says to have integrity and incorruptibility, not the women. The best advice about women I can give to young men is that they do not care at all how much you agree or disagree with them or what you believe — only that you believe something. They will adapt accordingly. It’s not women’s job to philosophize, and they will resent you for forcing them to.

A “real man” is someone that people trust to take control of the situation. He is someone who can go to a mess and say “I’ll take care of this” and the women and children will walk away as though it is already solved.

Any marriage where the man is less than 51% in control will fail. “Equal marriages” don’t exist — they are always where the woman dominates the man and the man lets her because he’s afraid of losing access to sex, which only makes her resent him more. Someone will wear the pants, and if the woman isn’t allowed to be the woman, she will resent her husband for making her be the man.

A “real woman” is beautiful. This includes that kind of grandmotherly charm that comforts and heals. The feminine is tied to the home, because it is at the home where the heart is. Thus St Paul says that women are to be chaste, obedient and domestic. It’s not that these are bad traits for men to be, but they are especially important for women.

Men are the head, and women are the heart. Men are the gas, and women are the brakes. Men are the creators, and women are the nurturers. This balance is absolutely necessary for society to function. These boundaries are not an accident of society.

Another good example is 1 Peter 3

3 Do not let your adornment be merely outward—arranging the hair, wearing gold, or putting on fine apparel— 4 rather let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the incorruptible beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is very precious in the sight of God. […] 7 Husbands, likewise, dwell with them with understanding, giving honor to the wife, as to the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life, that your prayers may not be hindered. [NKJV]

If men and women were equal, then women wouldn’t be weaker. Clearly women are weaker because they are not supposed to seek power. They are supposed to nest and trust the men to wield the axe.

Notice also St Peter’s connection of beauty to the inner disposition. This isn’t the liberal “real beauty is on the inside” platitude — this is saying that women should aspire to be gentle and patient. Liberals are anything but gentle, quiet or patient.

The “hidden person” and “quiet spirit” are especially important for women when you consider how destructive their gossip is when unrestricted. Now we have men being thrown in jail on false rape accusations or denied access to their children through divorce courts, which is nothing more than society having no restraints on women talking. It’s not that women should never talk — just that they should be extra careful when they do so.

Bible-Quote-3-768x512

Yes, men should have discretion as well, but it is extra important for women because of their nature. Or at least, it’s a different kind of discretion. In the same way, all the virtues St Paul says for men also apply to women, but they are extra important for men due to our own weaknesses.

None of this is perfectly definable. I’m not writing a legal treatise. Just general patterns. This isn’t plug-and-exchange philosophy.

Once again, masculinity is about power and femininity is about beauty in the very broadest and most whole sense of power and beauty.

Any Christianity that does not teach these basic principals will fail. There will be no reversal of the divorce rate until Christians return to a Titus 2 model of men and women. Without a biblical model of the family, any talk about “family values” from the religious right will fall on deaf ears, and the gays will have free reign to molest our children.

I will not compromise on this point. This is the hill I will die on.

Read More: Sexual Complementarianism As Platonic Ideals

Article Link: Occult Symbolism In Led Zeppelin

This is a great thing to read before bed.

https://mysterioustimes.wordpress.com/2013/12/03/the-occult-symbolism-of-led-zeppelin/

While Miley Cyrus will drag your daughter to hell, Jimmy Page will drag your son.

No, I’m kidding, though it just occurred to me that millions of teenagers including possibly myself wear these symbols on their clothes and hang them up in their room and never consider if there’s any deeper meaning than just a weird picture of an old man. If the band’s music was perfectly planned down to each cymbal hit, then it would make sense that all of their imagery was too.

The myth of Icarus, I would assume, lends itself to the occult easily, as it is about the pursuit of knowledge just falling short of completion. Occultists — to my understanding, but I’ve made a point to not study this in depth — also commonly hold up the myth of Prometheus. Fundamentally the occult is not about casting spells but about attaining hidden knowledge and causing man to rise to the same height as God while at the same time understanding you will always fall short of this goal. Obviously this is the same thing Satan sought.

I have a friend who did a bunch of drugs and read a bunch of neo-gnostic philosophy, and he said that Led Zeppelin’s music has all these layers that most people wouldn’t notice. “In my time of dying” is about Satan being cast out of heaven and made him feel as though he too were just outside the gates — funny, I used to think this was sort of a gospel song about hope.

This was the ultimate purpose of ancient paganism, both that man is a mere animal that lives for sex and violence but also the subversion and perversion of that same nature. This is why pagan symbols and myths often had human-animal hybrids and male-female creatures. You see this desire to subvert nature while being “one” with it most clearly in the 1977 movie The Wickerman (which is extremely R-rated).

Just by buying Led Zeppelin’s CDs, you bring occult imagery into your house. BUT it is all for naught. Just like Icarus, Jimmy Page’s attempt to indoctrinate America into the occult failed just short of its completion, for occult symbols only have the meaning you ascribe to them. A Ouija board is just cardboard and paint. Tarot decks are just a playing cards.

The occult rituals only work — that is, to summon a demon, whether intentionally or not — because you believe the ritual works. It’s a trick of the demons to cause you to invite them in. These symbols have no power if you view them as just a weird picture of an old man.

Also, the occult is gay, and I can only laugh at people in it. It’s for bisexual teenager girls who hate their fathers and obese middle aged men.

Creating A Vocabulary: “Fun” Doesn’t Exist

I’ve written about this before, but it’s been a while and it wasn’t a very good post. This is an extremely difficult concept to explain.

Fun is a very new concept. People have always done things we would think of as “fun” — there have always been songs and stories and laughter. But it was never in the sense we view these things now. The word “fun” doesn’t exist in other languages, and its modern usage in English is only maybe two centuries old. You don’t see Shakespeare writing about “fun”.

You yourself probably could not give a real definition of it. What is fun? You can give examples of fun. You could probably say “doing something which you enjoy and makes you happy”, but that would include things like going to church or moving out of your parents’ house. Surely fun is more than just being happy.

It’s not that “fun” activities are wrong in themselves or that laughter is sin — it’s the underlying intention in pursuing these activities. To go to Six Flags with my friends and just laugh all day seems really perverse to me, or at least childish. I tell jokes and laugh, but I don’t make this a primary focus of my life. People “enjoy” reading this blog, but they certainly wouldn’t say it’s entertaining in the way a TED talk is.

A lot of pastors try to be as funny as possible, and people consider this a positive trait. Catholics threw away the old mass for something more interesting. Christians think church is about entertainment, because everything has become about entertainment.

 

Spot the difference?

*****

Two days after writing this blog post, I came across a great explanation of this concept in the the book Spread the Word by Fr Michael Keiser, in which he explains that joy is essential to evangelism.

It is important to understand what joy is not. Joy is not fun. Fun is not a biblical word. Fun is often a self-centered attempt at entertainment and distraction. Christian life and worship are not meant to be fun-filled excursions to Happy Clappy Land in which we whip up the emotions to an abnormal high. That leads to let-down and burnout.

I don’t think in the category of “fun”. I barely think in the category of “entertaining”. These words are irrelevant. So what if something is fun? How does that at all affect its value?

We live in a society where we associate fun with goodness. We cannot understand how doing something to feel good could be a bad thing. We live life like it’s a math equation of good feelings. If your life had lots of good feelings, then you had a good life. If your life had a lot of difficulty, then it was all a waste. And nothing makes us more angry than someone who ruined our good feelings, even if through no fault of that person.

*****

I did a search, and only six times did Shakespeare use the word “fun”. In only maybe one of those does it have its modern sense. This is from a playwright who frequently wrote about people playing pranks on each other.

From Romeo and Juliet:

Nay, an there were two such, we should have none
shortly, for one would kill the other. Thou! why,
thou wilt quarrel with a man that hath a hair more,
or a hair less, in his beard, than thou hast: thou
wilt quarrel with a man for cracking nuts, having no
other reason but because thou hast hazel eyes: what
eye but such an eye would spy out such a quarrel?
Thy head is as fun of quarrels as an egg is full of
meat, and yet thy head hath been beaten as addle as
an egg for quarrelling: thou hast quarrelled with a
man for coughing in the street, because he hath
wakened thy dog that hath lain asleep in the sun:
didst thou not fall out with a tailor for wearing
his new doublet before Easter? with another, for
tying his new shoes with old riband? and yet thou
wilt tutor me from quarrelling!

I’m not sure what that means. It seems to mean “full”.

Othello:

Cassio. Welcome, Iago; we must to the watch.
Iago. Not this hour, lieutenant; ’tis not yet ten o’ the
clock. Our general cast us thus early for the love
of his Desdemona; who let us not therefore blame:
he hath not yet made wanton the night with her; and 1150
she is sport for Jove.
Cassio. She’s a most exquisite lady.
Iago. And, I’ll warrant her, fun of game.

Here it seems to mean “fond”.

Tempest:

Admired Miranda!
Indeed the top of admiration! worth
What’s dearest to the world! Full many a lady
I have eyed with best regard and many a time
The harmony of their tongues hath into bondage
Brought my too diligent ear: for several virtues
Have I liked several women; never any
With so fun soul, but some defect in her
Did quarrel with the noblest grace she owed
And put it to the foil: but you, O you,
So perfect and so peerless, are created
Of every creature’s best!

I guess this could mean “fun” in our modern sense, but it still looks like “full”.

From the same play:

I told you, sir, they were red-hot with drinking;
So fun of valour that they smote the air
For breathing in their faces; beat the ground
For kissing of their feet; yet always bending
Towards their project. Then I beat my tabour;
At which, like unback’d colts, they prick’d
their ears,

This seems to mean “full”, and it seems to have the connotation that they have been driven insane with the alcohol and valor.

Twelfth Night:

Viola. No, good swabber; I am to hull here a little 495
longer. Some mollification for your giant, sweet
lady. Tell me your mind: I am a messenger.
Olivia. Sure, you have some hideous matter to deliver, when
the courtesy of it is so fearful. Speak your office.
Viola. It alone concerns your ear. I bring no overture of 500
war, no taxation of homage: I hold the olive in my
hand; my words are as fun of peace as matter.

Again it seems to mean “full”.

From the same play:

Go, write it in a martial hand; be curst and brief;
it is no matter how witty, so it be eloquent and fun
of invention: taunt him with the licence of ink:
if thou thou’st him some thrice, it shall not be
amiss; and as many lies as will lie in thy sheet of
paper, although the sheet were big enough for the
bed of Ware in England, set ’em down: go, about it.
Let there be gall enough in thy ink, though thou
write with a goose-pen, no matter: about it.

Once again the word seems to mean “full”, but if you squint a certain way it could have the modern meaning.

*****

The idea of going to Six Flags and spending all day laughing — that’s kind of psychotic. There’s something deeply wrong with this idea that the right way to spend your day is to have unbridled, blinding happiness that makes you forget everything else, and that being able to afford this drunken happiness is the primary purpose in earning money.

If you could go back in time to your ancestors and say that they are building this amazing country so that you can sit at home and watch theater shows all day, and if they actually believed you, then they would think you were wasting this great gift they are sacrificing for. If you told them that most people plan their day around watching four hours of theater and that a third of the time involves advertisements, they wouldn’t have bothered to settle the frontier.

Fr Seraphim Rose said in a speech just a few weeks before his death:

The message of this universal temptation that attacks men today—quite openly in its secular forms, but usually more hidden in its religious forms—is:Live for the present, enjoy yourself, relax, be comfortable. Behind this message is another, more sinister undertone which is openly expressed only in the officially atheist countries which are one step ahead of the free world in this respect. In fact, we should realize that what is happening in the world today is very similar whether it occurs behind the Iron Curtain or in the free world. There are different varieties of it, but there is a very similar attack to get our soul. In the communist countries which have an official doctrine of atheism, they tell quite openly that you are to: Forget about God and any other life but the present; remove from your life the fear of God and reverence for holy things; regard those who still believe in God in the “old-fashioned’ way as enemies who must be exterminated. One might take, as a symbol of our carefree, fun-loving, self-worshipping times, our American “Disneyland”; if so, we should not neglect to see behind it the more sinister symbol that shows where the “me generation” is really heading: the Soviet Gulag, the chain of concentration camps that already governs the life of nearly half the world’s population.

This idea that you can go to Disneyland, “The Happiest Place on Earth”, and just have unrestricted happiness through the sheer manufactured wonder of everything, that the secret to having a fulfilled life is the tea cup ride — it’s sick,  in every sense of the term. This isn’t right. This isn’t sustainable. You can’t build a civilization on this.

Again, this concept is extremely difficult to explain. You either see it or you don’t.

And this idea of fun saturates everything. Why do people have sex with people they have no intention of procreating with? “Because it’s fun.” I ask how fun is relevant, and they say that fun is fun and it’s good to pursue fun.

I tell people that I hate how I wasted my childhood playing Pokemon, and they say, “Oh but you had so much fun!” But frankly, I don’t know what else I would have done. My parents told us to play outside, but there wasn’t anything to do out there. We didn’t learn any life skills. We didn’t go camping. We just had fun, and we were all miserable.

It seems that we think the primary purpose of childhood is to have fun. There’s no sense that childhood is about preparing for adulthood, because we have no model for adulthood. Children go to school and learn to read and do math, but they don’t learn how to fix a car or prepare a pot roast.

All of this is insanity. I cannot believe that I have woken up in this society and found this to be the reality we live in. Out of all the times I could have lived, it had to be in the 21st century where people’s highest values is fun. That’s the real reason Whites are not reproducing. It’s cruel that I have to live and function and hold a job in a world where the highest value is blind laughter.

I listen to people talk about how they are planning their trip to a generic European tourist trap and have been to various other European tourist traps to look at European things, and I just feel sad for them that they have nothing else in life to live for. Their whole life is built upon waiting for their week’s travel to Ireland, and they would never sacrifice that week for anything. They don’t spend their money on their children — they spend it on plane tickets. If a pastor preached a sermon that all your excess money should go to the poor or to the missionaries, these people would leave the church.

*****

When most people are diagnosed with a fatal disease, they break down. There was so much fun that they wanted to have, and now they won’t get to have that fun. They always wanted to see Rio, but they spent too much time at the office.

I would not care at all if I had cancer. Actually I would probably be kind of happy. I am certain I would not cry about how I never got to see or do something I always wanted to see or do. I cannot imagine having the vapidity of soul that upon learning that I’m going to die I would say, “Oh but I never went to Rio!”

When you’re dying, you’re supposed to reflect on how you lived your life and repent for anything you may have over-looked. Dying is supposed to be sobering and humbling. You are supposed to accept your powerlessness in the world. You are supposed to realize that all the things you thought were important will very soon not matter. To look heaven and hell in the face and decide that what really matters is the earth misses the point of the great gift of dying.

The joy of heaven will not be roller coaster joy. All true Christian joy is intimately mixed with sadness, particularly the relief from it. There will be joy in heaven, but there will not be laughter. Most people cannot understand how joy can exist without laughter, and therefore most people will not go to heaven.

Helping At A Food Pantry

Last week I spent one morning helping at a charity food pantry (i.e., non-profit welfare line) in the ghetto of what once was a really nice part of what was once one of the more cultured and wealthy cities in the country. It was in the basement of a dying church that was a cornerstone of the community when it was built in the 20s, but today the descendants of the founders have all moved into the western suburbs.

We all know that I love all the little nigra chil’ren of the world. I had thought about flying to Nigeria to help people with a different skin color than me, but then I realized that was stupid.

Nine o’ clock. The doors open, and you would think it was nigger Christmas. They poured in ready for their presents. Nothing like the handout line to bring the smiling faces. I felt like 10% less guilty for being one of the winners of history.

I think I saw maybe three non-Blacks total. Some people were genuinely crippled, and I also understand that after ten years on crack you can’t just hold a job and have a normal life. But I’ve always been very ambivalent about these organizations ever since reading Robert Lupton’s Toxic Charity. We criticize the welfare system because the government does it, and then we go and create our own welfare system. How does this not turn people into beggars? This does the polar opposite of creating an autonomous, self-sufficient Black community.

Nor are they homeless people. They are people with (broken) families that can’t afford 69-cent cans of beans.

But anyway, some I’m sure had real needs, and several were physically disabled, so whatever. As long as the crack addicts and transvestites of St Louis give us a fake smile, it’s all worth it.

Now some people will say, “Oh those people should just take care of themselves. There’s no shortage of thrift stores and Dollar Generals.” But let’s be realistic. Is there any evidence anywhere in the world that more than 10 or 20 percent of Africans are able to function in a modern Western society? McDonald’s doesn’t want to hire a functional retard who is missing half his motor skills. These people are poor and dumb and should have stayed on the plantation where they got three meals a day, but we screwed that up, so now we have to give them expired cans of green beans.

White people are so racist, we feed our slaves even when they don’t work for us anymore.

And yes, it is totally possible to both have compassion on someone and realize that they aren’t remotely your equal in any possible way except in the eyes of God. You can do both.

Naturally the single mothers let their kids run around unsupervised. One little girl spilled her drink at least twice, which I knew would happen but had no way to prevent it because the mother had wandered off. And then I couldn’t clean it up — we didn’t have any paper towels out, because the manager said that the people will just steal them.

I thought about how in a few years that little girl, no matter how adorable and innocent she may look now, will almost certainly have a bunch of stupid piercings and get pregnant by someone she knows doesn’t care about her in the hope that the baby might. Like by the age of thirteen. There’s also a decent chance she has an uncle who will rape her by eleven, because Black girls go through puberty at eight these days and Africans don’t care about White people concepts like consent or morality.

Another man licked his hands “clean” before touching the tongs for the free cookies. It’s a jungle out there.

Driving home on the interstate, I passed a beautiful old Catholic church that looked like Notre Dame. It was surrounded by crumbling brick houses and a BP gas station where you can buy crack and get shot.

Why Is The Bible Soft On Slavery?

I just saw The Prince of Egypt for the first time since it came out. It seems to be one of those movies that kids didn’t really understand until twenty years later (c.f., The Iron Giant and Treasure Planet). Visually and musically stunning, I understand why the adults loved it. As an eight-year-old, I was really bothered that there were puddles on the “dry ground” of the Red Sea.

The movie is a little heavy on the social justice abolitionism angle. This makes sense, since it was made by former Disney employees. I get that this is a really pedantic thing to complain about.

So, anyway, why is the Bible soft on slavery? Despite the whole Exodus thing, the Mosaic Law makes allowances for slavery. Most infamously, in the New Testament St Paul tells a runaway slave to return to his master. Not until maybe the 1700s did Christians really concern themselves with slavery.

Of course I want to say that you can’t judge the Bible by modern ethics, but the ethics of slavery are so ingrained into our culture that this question is hard to avoid asking. The simple answer would be just to say, “Slavery is totally fine, and slaves should never run away from their masters.” But that doesn’t account for the actual slave trade, where they went to Africa and ripped people out of their homelands. It also doesn’t address the ethics of dividing up families by selling a slave to another plantation in another state.

Some people say that American slavery was unique and that normally slaves have more autonomy. I don’t know. This is probably true.

[Interesting link.]

Okay, so, when the Bible (and particularly the New Testament) talks about obeying civil authority, I think what it’s saying is to not cause social chaos unnecessarily. Obey the emperor, pay your taxes, whatever. Don’t get bogged down in social justice. St Paul didn’t start a slave revolt, because that would cause the government to bring down the hammer even harder.

And another thing. You free the slaves and tell them good luck, and you get modern Baltimore. Aristotle said that slaves are naturally slaves and that it’s a disservice to free them. As I’ve written before, even with all the freedom and education and pandering, Blacks still have no sense of social responsibility, because they still have a slave mentality. The slave doesn’t ask about the viability of the welfare state — he just takes what he’s offered and lets someone else do those calculations, much how the grunt employee asks the business owner for a raise and doesn’t care about labor costs.

When the Hebrews were freed from slavery in Egypt, they had a country to go to. There was a plan to give them a new civilization to live in. There was an existing social infrastructure, with leaders of the community and a nascent theocracy. This is totally different than smuggling negroes to Canada just so that they can get a job mopping floors.

God delivered the Hebrews from slavery not because of social justice or self-determination but because of the covenant he made with Abraham. This was immediately followed by the Mosaic Law, which was a strict set of rules to govern every small aspect of life. So clearly this isn’t the “watch tv and be a poet” careerism we think of as freedom. The freedom from Egypt was the freedom to enter into a deeper submission to God.

What is never addressed is how far is the moral license of a slave escaping. If it’s okay for a slave to run away, is it also okay for him to kill his master? Is it okay for the slave to steal food? These questions are never asked.

I think the position of the Bible is that slavery is a not-ideal thing, and there are allowances in the Mosaic Law to ease the burden. But the Bible, and especially the Mosaic Law, understands the brutality of human nature. Instead of totally wiping out man’s selfishness, the Law tries to mollify it. So if you conquer another city and want to take a sex prize, there are rules for how you must treat her.

This sounds horrendous to us today, but we live in a society that can allow for a much more advanced morality. And anyway, I don’t pretend to fathom all the depths of the Bible. My natural tendency is to instantly provide an answer for any challenge, but after making enough dumb answers to “Why does the Bible allow rape?”, I’ve learned to just be comfortable saying, “I don’t know. I’ll have to do some research.”

The Bible tolerates slavery but does not encourage it, as it does with polygamy and alcohol.

Furthermore, what is the normal reason people give that slavery is wrong? “Slaves can’t do what they want! People have a right to their own self-determination.”

This idea of self-determination is a new thing. In most of human society, your father is a farmer, so you become a farmer. Whether or not you would rather be a poet is irrelevant. At best your family might be able to apprentice you out for some kind of skilled trade. Maybe you can join a band of thieves.

Our obsession with “following your dreams” is the product of a resource-excessive society. So is mass literacy and democracy. These things don’t exist in most human society for a reason. To super-impose that on a civilization like ancient Rome and then condemn slavery is anachronistic.

So what do I think about slavery, based on what I see in the Bible? I think it’s something society should try to not have, but I also don’t think it’s a sin. I think slave masters are obligated to treat their slaves a certain way, and I think slaves are obligated to follow the law. I am really tired of Christians loudly virtue-signalling how much they oppose slavery, as though it matters.

Nor was slavery the worst labor conditions America has ever thought up. I would strongly argue that that position belongs to coal mining scrip towns. There are things worse than slavery, or at least things just as bad. Blacks in Alabama had to pick cotton. Whites in New York had to live in squalid apartments.

Even today, most people don’t live like Sex and the City. They live paycheck to paycheck working a job they hate. Everything is terrible. Causing a slave revolt in ancient Greece isn’t going to make anything better. Just look at Haiti.

The History Of MADD And Non-Profits In General [Link]

Granted, this isn’t exactly an unbiased website.

https://drunkard.com/08_02_fighting_madd/

This country was founded on avoiding alcohol taxes. Then President Washington — the first Lincoln — waged a war against his own Scots-Irish veterans because they couldn’t afford his stupid tax.

I refuse to respect any DUI law. I may occasionally not drink-and-drive in suburban St Louis County because you know the Democrat government will set up sobriety check points instead of profiling the feral people-of-color.

According to the painstaking research of Stephen Beck of Drinkers Against Mad Mothers, only 500 innocent Americans are killed each year by drunk drivers. As many Americans are killed in railway accidents each year. […] “The billion-plus number of arrestable, impaired driving incidents per year (if they were sugar cubes) would form a line longer than 9,000 miles. The number of fatalities caused by drunken drivers, if also represented by sugar cubes, could be held in your hands.”

Niggers with guns kill far more people than drunk drivers looking for fast food at an hour when everyone is already off the roads.

I was taught in government schools that Christians were opposed to women’s suffrage. As an adult I learned that many Christian left-wing loons like fundamentalist Democrat William Jennings Bryan supported women’s suffrage precisely because it would lead to the prohibition of alcohol — which it did.

Indeed, girls just want to have fun as long as men can’t have any.