Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Obama to have beer with police and professor; Birthers looking increasingly crazy

This Thursday at 6 pm President Obama will have a beer (Budweiser)  with Professor Gates (Becks)  and  Officer Crowley of the Cambridge police (upstate imported ).  It will take place at the picnic table in the back yard,  the president said.    This should be interesting...

Another interesting development:  Republicans are increasingly distancing themselves from the "Birther"  movement:  Those who seek to divest Obama of the presidency on charges he is unconstitutionally presiding,  as he in not a natural born citizen.  On msnbc this evening,  the movement was decried by Republicans as seeming "paranoid and crazy".  Moreover,  even if it could be proven that Obama was born in Kenya,  he was voted in by such a majority,  that it would be more likely that the constitution would be amended to accommodate him,  than that he would be impeached.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Obama gets flak from Cambridge Police; but he holds his own

Obama as a student at Harvard in Cambridge,  MA:  He learned his Civil Rights lessons well. 


Should Obama be sorry that he believed the actions of the Cambridge police were directed by racial considerations in the case of Professor Gates ?    I think not.  Whether they were or not,  it was not an unreasonable conclusion to come to.   (I recall when I was a college student and working part time at a Fotomat booth,   a supervisor yelling at me because when he had driven by,  I had been "talking with a black guy". The insinuation was clear:  I had been doing something sleazy.   This black guy was a neighbor, and a PhD candidate at New York University.  We had been discussing literature.  These stereotypes die hard,  and racial profiling is a fact in law enforcement. )

The best part about Barack Obama ,  though,  is he is that he is so shrewdly,  so  wonderfully  passive-aggressive where it matters most.  He knows how to "play"  these things:  A bit of dumb show,  a little,  "Oh,  gee,  I did not mean anything by that. . . Who,  me?  No,  you misunderstood;  oh gee,  maybe we can all have a beer. ".  But he does not apologize.  He does not back down.  His stance is not defensive;  it is robustly offensive.  And his little display of bashful and boyish confusion is seen easily by the discerning for just what it is:  A mask,  behind which his real and considerable  righteousness plays its shrewd and swift role.


Yes,  we all know that African-Americans should not be "grievance collectors",  any more than should women or gays.  But subtle bigotry and chauvinism  -  and I have encountered it myself,  many a time, and the more subtle, the more insidious  -  is widespread:  Its roots are deep, and its weeds  may still rise  to choke the harvest with any slight alteration in political or economic circumstances.  Vigilance is not foolish.  And I do not agree with those that say Gates and Obama "made the wrong call".  I think President Obama,  with his usual sharpness and panache,  knew just what he was doing and saying,  and why.  But then,  he always gets it exactly right,  all the way.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Obama : Making the case for longterm overhaul of Healthcare: from the NY Times

From the New York Times,  this picture of President Obama making the case for his healthcare program to be overhauled, and claiming it is necessary for the long-term economic and social health of our nation. 

Sunday, July 19, 2009

In Memoriam: Phyllis Ehrenfeld

Phyllis Ehrenfeld, died on Tuesday, July 14, at Sloan Kettering Memorial Hospital. She was a much-loved and dear family friend, and a playwright, writer, and speaker in the Metro New York area. She wrote and spoke extensively on a variety of pressing social issues. As AEU's National Service Conference representative to the UN, she wrote monthly on their meetings. She was a newly-elected president of the Bergen County Chapter of the UN Association, and a prominent leader of the Ethical Culture Society. She received the Arnold Gingrich award form the New Jersey Council of the Arts. She will be terribly missed. She is survived by her husband, Sylvain, retired professor; a son David Ehrenfeld of W. VA;  a daughter, Temma Ehrenfeld, prominent writer from NYC, who has written for Newsweek and many major publications;   and a grandson, Benjamin Ehrenfeld of Boston.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Lecture and Reception , British Theorist and Author, Anthony Peake, at the Landmark Roosevelt Hotel, Aug 3 6-9 PM

Events
CALENDAR

Metro New York Prepare for a Peake Performance: Anthony Peake Brings Eternal Recurrence to Midtown East

Eric Bryant (Director,  Gnosis Arts Multimedia)  and I are thrilled and honored to be getting responses from New York Philosophy group,  Center for Inquiry,  Carl Jung & Transpersonal Center of New York,  and many others.  It is truly an honor to be able to host an innovative European thinker who brings Nietzsche, Heidegger, Kierkegaard,  Schopenhauer,  Jaspers to new life and heights in the 21st century:  En avant,  Mr. Peake.  To all who have responded with interest,  you have our thanks.  To Register:  http://peakelecturenyc.eventbrite.com/

Thursday, July 9, 2009

The Intersection of Two Trends: Provincetown, A Prophesy



. . . solemn heave the Atlantic waves between the gloomy nations;  swelling belching from its depths,  red clouds & raging fires.  Albion is sick, America feints!~ William Blake 1793  America:  A Prophesy
 How little has been understood of Blake's words:  As a visionary and mystic,  his sight was not only far reaching,  into the future,  but it probed deep down,  to the depths of man..."The American Revolution:  Epistemological as well as political"  :  These are the words of a Harvard professor,  who maintains a certain anonymity,  and truer words were never spoken.  It has been said that "the personal is the political"  but "the political is the epistemic"  is more true,  in that it is more profound and has wider scope.  


 Universal revolt:  The Orc of Blake's imagination,  and   in this first year of Barack Obama,  is it not growing clearer   that the Middle East  now fulfills part of that visionary spirit of which Blake prosphesied and of which America may indeed  oneday perish?   Prophetic vision is frightening,  precisely because it sees too much,  sees too well,  and Provincetown has been the womb for seers:    artists,  poets, mystics.   It is almost the attic of America,  in which the madwoman paces.   How much Provincetown continues to serve as a bellwether for national transitions can be seen by the recent upheavals there.  O Urizen, I weep for thy stern ambition,  but do weep in vain.  "Your Reason":  The political hegemony and one-sided epistemic privilege and power.  Is Provincetown not the place for Blake's Orc?  To be taken over by Urizen :  Blake's powers of prophesy surely cannot be dismissed as madness.    Is Provincetown really in trouble?  Has the danger been only temporarily shelved,  to emerge more formidable for its seemingly permanent departure?    The problem with seers:  We see more than we should .  Meaning leaps out at us,  as Freud's Interpretation of Dreams flew from his pen as he feverishly stabbed the pages with the searing inner illuminations,  that rushed one upon the other....Symbolism is understood in all its ramifications,  and nuances.  NARTH and the Middle East are seen as cipher and symbol,  revealing a shift and a sea-level change,  to come,  in the future.  As Nietzsche said,  the seer is  one who has arrived 15 mintues early on the historical scene. . .  
Urizen,  Tharmas,  Orc,  Los:  The quaternity of the Whole Man,  as even Jung knew keenly.  But always splitting,  always a bifurcation must occur, and a re-constellation.  But the transition is the danger.  And Nietzsche also said of the seer:  As animals of the forest become restless and nervous hours before the arrival of an approaching storm,  even so does the man with historical pre-vision grow nervous as  he sees the political clouds gather ,  unseen by others,  on the horizen.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Provincetown Losing Its Footing in a Time of Transisiton : A Sign of the Changing Times

Have come upon this link below,  and I had actually anticipated just this sort of thing,  way back in the first years of this decade.  Why?  I had  read Howe and Strauss The Fourth Turning :  An American Prophesy  and Peter Manso's PTown:  Art,  Sex, and Money on the Outer Cape.  Each book contained prophetic warnings,  which began being sounded as early as 1997,  as well as in 2003. Also read Faiman-Silva's article about a new "culture of resistance"  toward Ptown tolerance of LGBT and the general culture of new diversion from traditional values.   As I said,  this link is disturbing but not surprising:  
http://mysite.verizon.net/freebarryscott/provincetown.html
Also an important synopsis of the origin of this current state of affairs,  and the ensuing conflict:  http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_hb3491/is_3_9/ai_n28913728/pg_3/
*Also,  this expanded piece authored by me:  http://www.zimbio.com/Elvis+Mitchell/articles/G1lD9Y79WzN/Provincetown+Transition+May+Microcosm+End

Under New Influence