Sunday, 9 February 2014

And this really gets my goat....!

      Maureen Dowd is a smart girl, but never does quite arrive at a conclusion supported by critical thought processes.  In her rantish column to-day, she points out how Paddy  Chayefsky would be very distressed if he were alive to-day because of many shortcomings in the Greater Scheme.  To wit:

SundayReview|Op-Ed Columnist

Still Mad as Hell

WASHINGTON — I OFTEN wonder what Paddy would think.
I wish I could have a pastrami on wry with the late writer and satirist at the Carnegie Deli and get an exhilarating blast of truth about “the atomic, subatomic and galactic structure of things today.”
What would Paddy Chayefsky make of Kim Kardashian?
What would he think of Diane Sawyer showing cat videos on the ABC evening news?
What would he say about Brian Williams broadcasting on the Huntley-Brinkley network a video of a pig saving a baby goat while admitting he had no idea if it was phony? (It was.)
What would Paddy rant about the viral, often venomous world of the Internet, Twitter and cable news, where fake rage is all the rage all the time, bleeding over into a Congress that chooses antagonism over accomplishment, no over yes?
What would he think of ominous corporate “synergy” run amok, where “news” seamlessly blends into promotion, where it’s frighteningly easy for corporate commercial interests to dictate editorial content?
What would Paddy say about the Murdochization of the news, where a network slants its perspective because it sells and sells big?
What would he make of former Time Inc. Editor-in-Chief Norman Pearlstine returning in a new position as Time Inc.’s chief content officer, breaking the firewall between editorial and business as he works “with business and edit teams to drive the development of new content experiences and products throughout our portfolio that will fuel future revenue growth,” as C.E.O. Joe Ripp put it?
What would Paddy think of American corporations skipping out on taxes by earning nearly half of their profits in tax-haven countries?
What would he think of the unholy alliance between Internet giants like Google and Facebook and the U.S. national security apparatus?
Chayefsky’s dazzling satire “Network,” with its unforgettable mad prophet of the airwaves, Howard Beale, blossomed from the writer’s curdled feelings about TV. What wouldn’t the network suits do for ratings, he would ask lunch companions like Mel Brooks and Bob Fosse at the Carnegie Deli.
But now America runs on clicks. Chayefsky’s nightmare has been multiplied many times over, with the total media-ization and monetization of everything, the supremacy of ratings and market share, the commercialization of all editorial decisions.
    All of these 'what woulds?' are fairly innocuous and somewhat depressing, but the one that pins El Gringo Viejo to the mat for the count of two-and-a-half is the question asked to the Cosmos, "What would Paddy think of American corporations skipping out on taxes by earning nearly half their profits in tax haven countries?"
    We see the question as a fine representation of a smart woman being stupid, of failing to question immediately to the profundity of the questions and the range of possible answers.  Fools invent many answers based on all kinds of formulas that invoke fairness, balance, retribution, and considerations.
    We simply have to consider, for instance,  that lady welder in fabrication-line 8 with the  Siamese cat who needed an operation.   The lady had to fork over half of her savings for the cat's medical needs.   If the corporation for whom she worked had only paid its fair share of taxes instead of hiding the money in northern East South Lower Angina then the lady welder would have had an easier time of it with the cat's life-saving operation.  Right?
     No, the government would have  spent the money on a Solyndra project to buy votes for the next round of elections.
     Maureen, just think.  What if the Corporation was not required to pay any income taxes?  What business is it of the central government's what the corporation makes or loses in terms of its profits?    Are you afraid that the Board of Directors would do like government workers and have a seminar in Hawai'i and drink billions and billions of dollars worth of 400 year old Scotch and 500 years old French brandy and fly around in private jets playing Snoopy and the Red Baron Dogfight games at 100,000 gallons of fuel per minute, while having manicures and massages from servants being paid less than some dreamed-up minimum wage?
     Do you think that they are not qualified to spend money to the benefit of the corporation, thus to the benefit of the sharefholder and the  employees of the corporation better than can the government?   The government, after all Maureen, collects money it does not earn and spends it in the ever-on-going  task of buying votes (or favour) with other peoples' money.   The money, Maureen, would obviously be best left with management, shareholders, and employees of the corporation, not being taxed by slugs, dregs, crooks, thugs, and demagogues. 
    In the Republic of Texas, once re-established, there will be no income tax.  Not personal, not corporate, not DBA, not partnership,  nothing. No Income Tax.
The Episcopal Progress into the Fog, the Abyss, and the Canyon of Secular Uselessness from which there is no return:
    This morning, at Mass in our little Episcopal Church on the border, an unusually large number of communicants listens to the dull, fairly lifeless, but "relevant" words of the "new book" that has now totally displaced the "old book" and its out-of-date language.   By new book, it is meant the new Book of Common Prayer that replaced the old book that traced its lineage from the 1556 period when the Church of England decided once and for all to adapt the liturgy to...."a tongue understanded by all"....but would keep the Church of England an..." Holy, Catholick, and Apostolick Church" with a book of common prayer of use to both Prince and pauper, high born and common.
    The Elites of the Protestant Episcopal Church of America decided during the late 1960s that several things had to be done to update the Episcopal Church.   Ordination of women to the priesthood....or priestesshood, as the case presents, was one such necessary update.   Then,  acceptance of homosexuality as a higher form of humanity and as and end unto itself was to be tackled.   And certainly, unshackling the hopelessly outdated Church from its 'old timey' prayer book with its ancient, archaic, and embarrassingly out of date English language would have to be a major objective of the secular humanists who were gradually, but ever more quickly, taking control of the Episcopal Church, its properties, assets, and mind-set.  The overall objective, of course, was to establish the Episcopal Church not as a rock against the assaults of the Devil, but as a battering ram to destroy traditional culture and to disconnect the religious language of America from the children and young people.
     The "Old" Book of Common Prayer, along with the King James Bible (unabridged) had the literary style that said the words that needed to be said at certain critical times in the passage of a life.  Influenced greatly by the Latin and the liturgy of the Roman Church and with substantial inclusions of Judaic influences, and with considerable inclusion and deference to the Christian Calendar of the fixed and moveable fasts and feasts, each communicant of the Church of England, of the Episcopal Church, and the entire Anglican Communion knew and trusted  the "Old" Book of Common Prayer would provide eloquent guidance through the murky mists of sadness and mirth of joy.
     Now we have the "new" book of common prayer.   It has no majestic eloquence.  Sometimes its message is skewered.  At times changes were made simply to make changes.  And it reads like those things you have to read when you are putting a new application into your computer, and you have to check that you have read and understand the ''terms and conditions''.
     But we had to up-date in order to keep the young people in and the young marrieds and the newcomers, etc.   Of course, such remonstrance was poppycock.  The changes were made to drive out the geezers, and to kill the concept of..."May the circle, remain unbroken".   But there is one last little bit of the ancient language....not much, mind you....but enough to cause a little candle in a forgotten room to continue to try to cast its light of inspiration and eloquence.   The Lord's Prayer.
     And what brings all this on?   In the prelude to the administration of the Eucharist by the officiate, the priest (or priestess, as the case may be) says "....and as our Saviour Christ  hath taught us, we are bold to say, 'Our Father, who art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name, thy Kingdom come, thy will be done, on Earth as it is in Heaven.  Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our Trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us.  And lead us not into temptation, But deliver us from evil.   For thine is the Kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever and ever. Amen
     The funny and sad part?   A man had his 5 year old daughter and 7'ish son in the pew to our front and right.   As the congregation prayed aloud and confidently, two voices rose to prominence, clearly audible, enunciating clearly, and boldly stating their petition to the Great Yahweh even over the combined voices of scores of adults.  They clearly said what they had to say and they knew what they were saying.  In the ancient English word and construct.   They relished the moment.  The other communicants were amused and proud of them and their completely unabashed rendering of the fundamental Catholic approach to addressing the Cosmic Force.
    And they told us we had to "update" the Book of Common Prayer in order to make it relevant to us, instead of continuing to teach what we had to do to be relevant to the instructions in the "old" Book of Common Prayer.   Out of the mouths of babes.
     And finally, if the Republicans can only understand that the Obama Socialised Medicine Initiative (OSMI) is the dead chicken hung on the dog's neck.    Wherever the dog goes, he will have to smell the stinking dead chicken that is rotting underneath his nose.  The Republicans need to stop and take a deep breath and realise that not only is it wise to defer action due to the fact that there is no reasonable assurance that the president will abide by any legislation even if he signs it....but it is also an argument understood by the reasonable voter.   Attorney General Eric Holder's announcement to-day, for instance, that the central government is going to proceed as though all homosexual marriages are valid in terms of their treatment and consideration by the central government is a direct contradiction to present established law.   The Obamatrons love to bring up 'established law' when they talk about the Bill that had to be passed in order to find out what was in it.   But when they don't want to deal with established law....'stroke of a pen, law of the land'.   Welcome to Venezuela.  Tomorrow, the embargo of all 401K and IRA accounts, because, after all, it's just money sitting around doing nothing.  Could such a thing be in the offing?
Thanks for your time, as usual.
El Gringo Viejo