It was the delay of my wife’s flight from Stockholm
that found me sitting alone in the airport “Arrivals” area,
ten feet away from the first television set that I had seen
in five years …
Dispensing with Discernment
When I was a boy, I loved to learn.
As a teenager, I took every opportunity
to improve my knowledge by listening to,
observing, and talking with mature adults
who knew interesting things that I did not.
Sadly, it has become very apparent
that my particular method of learning –
shutting my mouth, and opening my eyes
and ears instead –
is one that seems to possess
not a great deal of popularity in the world today.
The advent of the home computer,
with its ready supply of photographs, video;
‘sound-byte’ articles; and personal opinion
from all and sundry on ‘chat’ sites,
has encouraged multitudes raised WITHOUT
the mental discipline instilled by books
and diligent reading,
to regard themselves as The Instant Expert
on whatever topic takes their fancy.
The knowledge, wisdom ( which is the ability
to apply knowledge ), and life-long skill
of experienced people … no longer matters.
In the 21st century, ‘My Opinion’
( that is, whatever appeals to – Me )
has become the only standard of … “truth”.
People will believe any and every
hand-wringing hypochondria, revisionist history,
and newly-manufactured ‘science’ …
if they see and hear it on the television set;
or glimpse a stand-alone photograph
alongside a specially crafted newspaper write-up.
Human machines that cannot think without
“looking it up” on the Internet;
impoverished modern minds that would be rich
in practical wisdom, if they had but the humility
to pick up the crumbs that fell from the table
of those who came before them.
A personal thought to all 21st century,
Instant Internet Experts … teenagers …
college-boys … and beer-swilling ne’er-do-wells:
“Criticism Is Good:
it keeps a Mature man or woman ‘sharp’
– PROVIDED, of course,
that the one doing the criticizing
is QUALIFIED by sober-minded MATURITY,
WISDOM … and Life EXPERIENCE.”
In the 21st century, EVEN actual facts
no longer seem to matter.
Consider history, for instance …
Now … no one EVER actually believed
that the earth was flat.
That is a fallacy that has been taught
to almost every public school child
for the past hundred and twenty years.
The notion is the absurd invention
of American author Washington Irving
in his fictional account of ‘hero’
and his imagined stand against the
oppressive ignorance of popery.
( Then again, an invention not too “absurd”,
apparently – for, after all, multitudes in the “advanced”
21st century believe Irving’s assertion to be a fact. )
The curvature of the earth was (almost) apparent
to men who specifically ascended mountains
in order to get a better view of approaching ships
with altitude, they could always see over and beyond
what had appeared – lower down – to be the horizon.
Is it truly necessary to state the glaringly obvious ?
One sees farther when climbing higher !
Curvature was apparent to those charged with
engineering ancient monuments for, a long plumb-line
held from a great height,
would actually hang with a slight curve.
You may despise the old Bible – yet you cannot argue
against the fact that its Old Testament
was written several thousand years ago …
and even that old book speaks of “the circle of the earth”,
[ Hebrew ‘chuwg’ or, ‘sphere’, Isaiah 40:22. ]
But that book – which is so profoundly infuriating
both to the immature, who curse and profane
out of all proportion to any other Book of Fairy Tales,
at even the mention of it;
and to those who refuse to consider that there could be
any higher god than themselves –
– is PARTICULARLY annoying when it also notes
that the spherical earth … sits in space:
“he … hangeth the earth upon nothing.”
Arrogant, smirking, 21st century mankind
may well try to present the ‘unsophisticated’ people
of the ancient world –
you know – those ‘backward’ civilisations who could
place monstrous cubes of stone so precisely,
that a piece of paper cannot be inserted between them –
but they do it through outright lying,
and out-of-context misrepresentation.
A “flat earth” was certainly no deterrent to maritime trade,
which was a routine occupation long before Columbus.
In my wife’s Scottish home town of Roslin, in Midlothian,
portions of the mid-15th century Rosslyn Chapel
( ten minutes’ walk away from where her parents still live ),
are decorated with stone carvings of … corn … a crop
peculiar to North America … yet which is situated
in plain view: carved a good fifty years
before Columbus “discovered” America.
No … there was no 15th century sailor
– nor even the 11th century Vikings
who regularly made the transatlantic voyage to Iceland,
Greenland, and North America – who Ever imagined
that they were going to sail off the end of a flat world.
And yet this notion is believed as a ‘fact of history”
And few there are who will believe otherwise.
The Cuckoo is a bird that never builds its own nest.
It gains its success by brutality and occupation.
It is a thug, a thief, and a bully of the worst kind.
It enters the nests of other birds, destroys what belongs
to them; steals the labour and workmanship of others,
and claims the results for itself.
It Invades … Occupies … and Steals what others own;
what others have created … and passes it off as its own.
The degradation of the English language
has always been something that I have always found
to be particularly appalling.
And it can certainly serve as an able illustration that,
whatever appeals to laziness … sells.
Noah Webster wakes up one morning;
decides he hates the British; and declares
that he is going to invent … an American language.
Of course, Webster doesn’t invent anything,
He plagiarises English –
dispenses with objective rules of grammar;
alters spelling according to his own
evidently Italianate taste;
and passes the resulting abomination off as
… “American English”.
With regard to SPELLING and the English language:
England was conquered, in 1066, by the Normans.
NOT the Italians.
English spelling is after the French – Not the Italian.
“Colour” … not ‘color’.
The premise of Webster’s perversion is: Laziness
save yourself the ‘trouble’ of learning grammar …
nothing to learn; nothing to remember … just ‘spell’ it
as it sounds.
Now, even those who embrace Webster’s innovation can,
I am certain, distinguish between painting vertical lines (stripes)
on a wall – “striping” … (single consonant, ‘long’ vowel: “str – I – ping”) …
and the task of removing wallpaper – “stripping”,
(double consonant, short vowel … “str – ih – pping”.)
Yet, interestingly, they see nothing questionable in “traveling” –
(single consonant, ‘long’ vowel … “trav – EE – ling”), which,
in the English Language, is rendered “travelling”,
(double consonant, short ‘e’ … “trav – eh- lling”.)
And even in America, “Map” becomes “Mapping”.
And all in the pursuit of laziness.
Moving from the beginning of the 19th century,
to the end of the twentieth century allows one to see
the results of throwing away objective standards
of right and wrong – and doing things … “by feel”.
I say “by feel” because, of course,
for the last twenty years or more, people
no longer … think.
“Well, I just feel like it should be that …”
“And with all this “feeling” going on, it has – apparently –
also become essential ( in modern communication )
to interject the word “like” after every sixth word;
and begin the answer to any question,
by saying “So …”
“Have you lived here long?”
“So, I have lived here since 2009.”
“And, what have we here?”
“So, this is the main entrance to the building …”
And, of course, modern intelligence
would not be so readily an oxymoron
were it not for the necessity of including that filthy f-obscenity
at every possible opportunity – most notably,
after the word “the”.
Modern communication. Let me hear you speak,
and I’ll tell you what you are.
As was the case of two modern misses in the queue
in front of my wife and me, at a certain local Coffee House …
“So, like, I said to him, like, ‘You’ve got to be kidding’,
cause, like, I’m not going anywhere with him!
Like, I mean, come on, really!
Like, what am I, like, Oh my G**, what a f***ing loser! …”
Mother must be very proud.
I certainly understood the look
that the obnoxious little Madam gave me
when I indicated my wife behind her,
and a little girl in front of her,
and asked her to control her language.
Not the SLIGHTEST concept of common decency in public,
much less ‘effing’ and blinding in front of other people –
including the little girl standing with their mother,
right in front of them.
What a public testament to her … “parents”.
… Society ?
Truly, there is more refinement in an animal.
[ Continued in Part 2 ]