Saturday, March 28, 2009

Thoughts of Karma

I have always been fascinated by the idea of karma, especially when called down on the heads of one's enemies. Case in point:

One malicious miscreant I know, Brent, has called the wrath of karma down on many people's heads, people who have crossed and thwarted his plans and fallen out of grace with him. Time after time he has sworn that he was in the right and karma would get those who flamenco-ed on his toes and he waited for news like a hungry shark waiting for minnow school to let out.

He was moderately successful in his field and chalked up a few points because he was diligent in promoting himself and his agenda. He married a really nice girl who had no idea of his checkered past, except what he told her, and she felt sorry for his trials and tribulations. And then she got a taste of his obsession with an ex-best friend, Max, who he believed had sold him down the river.

Max was unaware of the ongoing drama created or that Brent (also know to friends and foes alike as Bent) stalked him online and in real life. Max just went about his life as if nothing had changed, and for Max nothing had. He had his work, small close circle of friends and family and his hobbies. he and Brent traveled in the same circles but didn't meet: Brent because he got more mileage out of playing the wronged party and Max because he paid attention to his life and didn't get involved in dramatic scenes; he had enough on his plate without borrowing trouble.

Although Max had some difficulties, the way we all have problems from time to time, Brent's initial success began to fade, sputter and look like it was going to die. When his kids complained that he spent too much time cursing Max and that they remembered him as a great guy who treated them like equals and listened to them without talking down to them, Brent blew up. His kids couldn't wait to get out of the house and go away to college, which all three of his kids did without delay. When Brent's wife Penelope told him he was obsessed and that she didn't see anything wrong with Max, Brent accused Penny of having an affair with him.

Each of Max's successes fueled Brent's obsession and his anger and things began to deteriorate. His marriage was in trouble. His work was suffering. He was coasting on his laurels and taking on too much new work that either didn't pay well or faded out of existence because he stretched himself too thin. Brent blamed Max for everything and Max was oblivious.

When things began to near rock bottom, Brent took a look at the past five years and made a startling discovery. Karma wasn't eating Max's lunch, but was having a field day with his blessed and happy life. Could it be that karma was crashing his party because of what he had done to Max?

It is a hard pill to swallow when a person realizes that maybe he was wrong and that all the stories he told were prejudiced in his favor, that he didn't want to admit that the truth was considerably different and that he had been at fault. Karma is touchy and plays no favorites. Even though we all tend to slant things to make ourselves look good or like the victim, the truth is often more than a hair off true. Calling karmic retribution down on our enemies opens us up to being struck by karma's sizzling lightning bolts and having the world crumble beneath our feet. Sometimes it takes a while because karma is usually busy taking someone else down, but karma usually gets around to the real culprit, turning their happy world into a quagmire quickly sinking beneath us and sucking us down.

Want to know the truth of a situation? Watch people's lives. Discount the usual irritations and scattered problems and look for cracks in the idol's feet that no amount of patching repairs. Sometimes the disintegration is slow, but often it is shockingly rapid once it starts.

Brent should have taken a few steps back, cooled off and looked at his friendship with Max with the cold, clear gaze of truth, setting aside his hurt feelings and his tendency to exaggerate the facts. Considering how many people Brent has raped, pillaged and bad mouthed over the years and how many people he has hurt, his realization that karma hitting him wasn't a fluke or a mistake and that he had earned his punishment came too late.

Brent has some good qualities, but they are over shadowed by his insecurities and his need to control everything and everyone around him. He can be marvelously kind and often charming, but they are icing on a manure cake.

Max is slowly gaining respect and success in his field and he has earned it the hard way. He is still an opinionated cuss and has his moments of doubt and laziness, but he is a good and honorable man and that is far more important than being liked by the whole world, as Obamessiah is now finding out to his detriment. Max doesn't talk much, but he walks the talk every step of the way. His opinions and views are often unpopular, but he doesn't care. He has integrity and that counts for a lot.

Karma has a long memory and chases liars, cheats, thieves and politicians down when it gives chase, and karma won't bargain. Pay in this life or for the next 20 lives, but karma will have what is owed -- with interest if it is a long chase. Count on it.

So, if you're wondering whether all the trouble cropping up in your life is the luck of the draw or karmic balance swinging around and you have what you need to take care of your problems without making worse problems, then it's just the statistical probability that shit happens. If not, then check your rear view mirror. Karma is often closer than it appears.

That is all. Disperse.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Freedom of speech: A two-edged sword

My journalist friend in Israel sent me a petition and a link to a cartoon that demonizes Israel. This cartoon.

As I reminded him, and will continue to remind Arab, Jew and Democrat who can't understand the nature of the First Amendment to the Constitution they promised to honor, serve and protect, free speech means the people who hate you have as much right to voice their opinions as you have to voice yours.

That means that when the New Yorker prints a cover that makes fun of Obamessiah or when Danish political cartoonists make fun of the Arabs, and even when the New York Times publishes a political cartoon that portrays Israel as a headless Nazi stormtrooper pushing a Star of David with a shark's head pursuing a woman in chador and her child designated as Gaza off a cliff it is covered by free speech.

The author of the petition is outraged that the New York Times would publish such anti-Semitic filth and calls on everyone to petition the newspaper to apologize and retract the political statement under penalty of losing subscribers and advertisers. Sorry, folks, the Times like most newspapers have enough trouble where subscribers and advertisers are concerned. No petition necessary.

As I explained to my journalist friend, you cannot howl in outrage over a political cartoon that makes you look bad and then howl in outrage when the Arabs are offended by political cartoons that make them look like mad-eyed religious zealots without intelligence or a sense of humor whose only thought in life is to convert or destroy anyone who opposes them. The sword cuts both ways.

The essence of the First Amendment is that you have the freedom to mock and demonize anyone you wish and then stand by and take it like a man when your enemies mock and demonize you. It's the same freedom that saw a Jewish lawyer defend the Ku Klux Klan in front of the Supreme Court to protect their rights even though the Klan would rather burn a Jew than allow him to live.

Freedom of speech is not a light switch you can turn off and on and it is not bludgeon that you can use to punish your enemies indiscriminately. Freedom of speech only works when you can take as good as you give. It means you defend your enemies even when what they say is hateful and degrading and foul.

This is a lesson the Democrats and President Obamessiah and his group fail to understand. You cannot make fun of President Bush without at some point knowing and accepting that people will make fun of you, your policies, your lifestyle and you. You cannot criticize anyone without accepting that people will criticize you. If you shut down any dissenting voice, you shut down your rights as well. You cannot have it both ways. It's time you read the Constitution you promised to honor, respect and defend or step down and let someone who understand the nature of the Constitution and the Amendments that guarantee our freedoms and rights take your place.

Freedom of speech, and indeed all of our guaranteed freedoms, is a two-edge sword that cuts both ways. Defend it or you will find that the sword will cut you equally as deeply as you cut your opponents and enemies.

That is all. Disperse.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

The only change you can believe in

They called it Bush's folly and they castigated and blamed and ridiculed him for it, but the proof is in the facts.

With Obamessiah pushing us further and further into debt and blaming it on Bush, it's too bad the numbers don't bear out his story. I'll bet Bush is beginning to look pretty good right about now, especially with a president who is still out there campaigning, probably for the next election in four years, or starting his speaking tour early instead of getting down to work in the Oval Office.

When invited to be the commencement speaker for Notre Dame University, I'll bet the dean and board expected everyone to applaud and stand in line for tickets to hear Obamessiah give another one of his hope and change speeches, but that's not going to happen. Some Catholics are outraged. But the great teleprompter speaker is already busy lining up his next Iranian grovel-fest at the second Alliance of Civilizations forum so he can beg Iran to unclench its fist, especially since so far his groveling and begging have worked so well. Where's a strong president when you need one? Well, if it's Obamessiah, he's probably scheduling another visit to Oprah or Conan O'Brien since he's already done Letterman and Leno.

What we need is change we can believe in and so far the only thing I can believe in is what changes I've already seen, like the devaluation of the dollar, bait and switch on the bailouts, Obamessiah and the politicos on Capitol Hill accepting campaign funds from troubled AIG that they refuse to give back while demanding that AIG void previous contracts with their employees and give back bonuses they are contractually obligated to pay, erasing trillions of dollars of toxic assets while printing more and more paper money that will end up in Europe, China and third world countries' vaults while China, our biggest lender, demands the world find any other currency that isn't the U. S. dollar to use as the standard. None of those things happened on Bush's watch, but you can be sure the great apologist and blame claimer, Obamessiah, will quip about it on one of his many public appearances while shucking and jiving and whining that it's not his fault, he inherited this mess.

Yes, Obamessiah inherited the pork fest (Stimulus bill) that he crammed down the taxpayers' throats and called it good and then crammed another pork fest (Omnibus bill) down the taxpayers' throats while he was busy jacking up the national debt to over $3 trillion, and he's sliding for over $8 trillion in national debt. Yes, that's Bush's fault. That's the transparent government Obamessiah promised, except so far the only transparency has been handing over Bush's memos in the wake of 9/11 while stonewalling the press and the American people and hiding behind Pelosi's Machiavellian machinations as the Democratic liberals get out their dusty wish lists and shoehorn them into every bill they're writing and racing through Congress on Mercury's winged feet.

I'll bet you wish Bush was still in the White House now -- or you soon will as Obamessiah and his political shills keep pumping up the national debt.

That is all. Disperse.