Sunday, December 30, 2007

time management

Some weeks back I lied when I titled a post 'I used to be disgusted'. In actuality, I still am disgusted but if I weren't a little bit hopeful I wouldn't post at all. The problem I have with writing a reasonably entertaining and informative politically derived blog is one of time and leisure. I have little of either since I do have a full-time and frequently irritating job in which I'm responsible for obtaining insurance authorizations for people needing surgery. No more need be said about that at present. My paintings take ages to plan and uninterrupted time to actualize even though (if they work) they look as if they were dashed off with the speed and grace of a skilled calligrapher.. or so I'd like to think. I enjoy reading, so besides novels, philosophy, science etc., I also read 20-40 pages of editorial stuff daily. I know it hasn't shown in my posts but doing any kind of well thought out overview requires even more time as well as some ability to be clear and concise.. funny helps too. But at the moment Fairlane at Jonestown appears to be unavailable, Gary of Withinsight is sunning himself in Mexico and I think Scarlet at Invisiblewoman may have overindulged in ale last night - so maybe this is my opportunity to rant a bit..

The photograph above is of our old favorite monster cum dictator, Adolph (why didn't they love my art?) Hitler and his very talented and adoring chronicler, Leni Riefenstahl. In 1934 she made a film called 'Triumph of the Will' which was a loving testimonial to the delights of Nazism and the powers of mass persuasion. It came to be extolled as one of the most extraordinary examples of political propaganda ever produced and one I believe everybody should attempt to see. It's available on dvd and would make a very lively evenings worth of entertainment and a good focus for anyone wanting to compare what happened then with what's going on now. Fascism didn't die at the end of WWII.

Check this out for instance:

It's a still from the film showing the crowds assembled at the Nuremberg Nazi Party Congress in 1934. Now check this out and see if you notice any similarity:

Why it's none other than little George's Inauguration in 2004! Isn't that amazing? From what I've read no previous inauguration was set up in just this way. Naturally, we were told it was specifically to keep terrorists at bay but it was one of the scariest things I've seen in my life.

Anyway, I wanted to point out that all of this happened in Germany after the great Reichstag fire of 1933 when the Parliament was burned and an unemployed Dutch worker was blamed. He was said to be a Communist although that was never proved. Soon after Hitler made short work of either getting rid of or co-opting his opposition. Should I post a picture of the Reichstag next to one of the World Trade Center or would that be too obvious?

Of course, I have no more idea of what really happened on 911 than anybody else does but I do believe it was nothing like what we were told by the 911 Commission. 911 Truth has a lot more plausible suggestions.

This may seem to have little relevance to what's going on now and an upcoming presidential election year but a lot of people lost faith in our government when the tragedy was used as an excuse to grab an unprecedented amount of power both abroad and domestically. To a large extent the MSM has become more like Pravda than an honest and open forum for disseminating real information. This morning, along with my morning coffee, I got the news that William Kristol (famous conservative pundit of The Weekly Standard and Fox News as well as chief apologist for attacking Iraq etc. etc.) has been named to the editorial staff of the NY Times where he can help sustain the reporting balance of Thos. Freedman et al. If they wanted some balance, why didn't they invite Noam Chomsky or David Ray Griffin or just about anyone we could name that they will never consider.

Yeah, I'm disgusted.. but I'll continue to be hopeful too.
Now to find a cup of tea...


Shimmy said...

William Kristol's gig at the NYTimes: the reality of history has been replaced by the publicity of history.

Zee said...

Interesting post. I can follow your train of thought. I barely need help to be synchronized.
Leni Riefensthal was an interesting character indeed. I don't know if you saw her photos when she was traveling in Africa in her late 70's, fucking brilliant (excuse my language)!! She only carried a Leica 35mm camera, but her photographs of native people turned out to be exquisite. What a talented woman lost in a wrong cause. In her later life she distanced herself from her Nazi past, with some, but not entirely convincing success. Bottom line, she had "the eye" for whatever she captured.
As for the NYTimes and all the other stuff you mention, it actuall becomes depressing. Journalism is probably at it's high time low these days ... even Wall Street Journal sold out.
Well, you keep on blogging, whenever you find time. That's a good thing!

Ben said...

The beauty of sports reporting is that there is no place for a William Kristol in it. Predict that this season the LA Clppers will be the NBA champs for five years running and no one will take you seriously.

There's some disagreement over whether Hitler was ever really a serious artist. By some accounts he just liked the idea of sleeping til noon and having naked women pose in his flat. In any case, it turns out that pliant crowds were his medium.

This was a thoughtful and well-developed post. I like it.

susan said...

Shimmy, what a smart cat!

Zee, I have seen Leni's other photos and you're right, she did have a fabulous eye - which was what made Triumph such a scary visual feast.

susan said...

Ben, We must have been doing concurrent comments. Yeah, come to think of it I never have seen a reproduction of one of his paintings :-)

Anonymous said...

Thoughtful post with lots of history embedded in it...Here's wishing u and ur dear ones also a wonderful year ahead...May the beauty of this festive season,fill your life with the laughter of loved ones, the warmth of good cheer and all the joy to light up your heart. And hope the dawn of the New Year marks the beginning of a prosperous future!

Granny said...

You're right. We are fans of the same people.

I co-write another blog called Is America Burning with another great-granny and a granny. I haven't been there much lately but I'll get back to it.

Granny said...

P. S. I stopped reading the NYT when they began charging for the only columnists I read. I just started back now that they took down the wall.

I may have to stop again. What could they have been thinking!!

susan said...

Kalyan, All best wishes of the New Year to you too. I look forward to seeing more of your wonderful photo essays in 2008.

Granny, Thanks so much for your visit. I'll keep an eye out for 'is america burning' - the answer there I think is 'how hot?'
Paul Krugman is still at NYT and has been the only columnist writing accurately these past 7 years.

Seraphine said...

Wow- thoughtful and scary post. The compared Hitler/Bush photographs are mind boggling.