Found Words/Written Words – Rally to Restore Sanity

October 31, 2010

Let me preface this post by stating (reminding? I may have said this previously) that I am still forming my own political opinions.  Currently I would say that on most issues I “lean left”, but save for a few issues, I don’t firmly hold a stance on anything yet.  I can be convinced through discussion on some things, and convinced I’m correct where I stand through discussion as well.

I had an interesting discussion with a friend yesterday on Jon Stewart, after much thought, he was right and I was wrong on the point I was arguing, what I realized later though is that I was arguing the wrong issue.  It was spurred by Jon Stewart’s “Rally to Restore Sanity”.  Fresh after watching his closing speech, I had completely forgotten that Stewart is pretty consistent in his left wing views on politics.  Which is why I found his ‘rally’ so compelling. The event wasn’t political in the sense of getting people to change their opinion, it was literally a rally to remind people that it’s okay to be a “moderate” in the sense that most of us have some views that would place us to the right, and other views to the left.

There are several quotes from it that I found poignant, the following are the ones that hit home with me personally.

In reference to the “rally” itself:  “The impact is a broader cultural one, impacting ideas of what it means to be political,” he says. “It doesn’t have to mean you have to be liberal or conservative. It means you can be engaged in what is happening around you.” – Ethan Thompson; Associate Professor of Media and Culture Studies at Texas A & M University-Corpus Christi

“It was calming to see so many people who were at the rally because they want to see less anger, vitriol and nastiness in politics.  People can disagree without being nasty” – retired diplomat Michael Ceurvorst

A few lines from what I thought was one of the most compelling speeches in the few years I’ve gained an interest in politics, given by Jon Stewart himself during his closing remarks:

“I can’t control what people think this was.  I can only tell you my intentions.   This was not a rally to ridicule people of faith or people of activism or to look down our noses at the heartland or passionate argument or to suggest that times are not difficult and that we have nothing to fear.  They are and we do.  But we live now in hard times, not end times.  And we can have animus and not be enemies.”

“The country’s 24 hour political pundit perpetual panic conflictinator did not cause our problems but its existence makes solving them that much harder.”

“If we amplify everything we hear nothing.  There are terrorists and racists and Stalinists and theocrats but those are titles that must be earned.  You must have the resume.  Not being able to distinguish between real racists and Tea Partiers or real bigots and Juan Williams and Rick Sanchez is an insult, not only to those people but to the racists themselves who have put in the exhausting effort it takes to hateRead the rest of this entry »


Found Words – Douglas Rae

October 19, 2010

Returning to New Haven that Sunday night, I retreated to my life as an academic. I was department chair, and a little bored with the preoccupations of my academic discipline. I was slightly unnerved by the sense that I under- stood political science as displayed on the bookshelves surrounding me at Yale far better than I understood the very specific and local questions of poli- tics raised by the weekend retreat.

= Making Life Work in Crowded Places

Found Music – FM Static

October 18, 2010

Every day I get a little closer to,
The things that I wanna, say with my life,
In no particular order
I’d like to make some sort of mark,
So that the world knows I was here…

And I’ve been thinkin’ about,
How I could scream it out loud,
Or paint a picture somehow,
A thousand miles long
And I’ve been tryin’ ’till now,
These walls are freakin’ me out,
Just need to let it all out,
And reach out,
Because sometimes, you can forget who you are

– Sometimes You Can Forget Who You Are

Written Words – Oxford Morning

October 17, 2010

Crisp air and a cold morning in England

so old she makes you think the earth long ago stopped spinning on its axis

as if the old adage was a mistake

and Atlas left Oxford to stagnate on his tea break


Found Words – Jasper Fforde

October 14, 2010

“I didn’t set out to discover a truth …. But the truth inevitably found me, as important truths often do, like a lost thought in need of a mind.”

-Shades of Grey

Found Words – Aaron Sorkin

October 12, 2010

“The rule is do what feels right and then trust yourself.”

Written Words – Change the World

October 12, 2010

All the kid talks about is changing the world.

About is making his mark.

But talk and thoughts go about as far 2 dollars in gas money when it comes to tackling something as big as changing the world.

How to go about changing it, or what actually needs to be changed, these are foreign concepts.

So wrapped up in the notion of doing the right thing, of being noble, and making a differrence, the simple logistics of making change have come about.

But for now the kid can go to bed every night knowing everyone that listened to him thinks he’s a great guy with noble goals.

He can get away with that for a while before people realize you’re just a fraud, with really good public speaking ability.