America Needs a Prophet

America has lost its way.  Those under forty are dispirited and directionless.  The older people are confused and frightened.   Only the fanatics of the Left are energized.  And their only impulse is to destroy what is normal.

William Butler Yeats in his poem, “The Second Coming” characterized the problem of modernity thus:

“Turning and turning in the widening gyre

The falcon cannot hear the falconer;

Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;

Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,

The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere

The ceremony of innocence is drowned;

The best lack all conviction, while the worst

Are full of passionate intensity …”

I think what he is saying is that we’ve lost our way utterly.  Those running our civilization have disconnected from what is essential to human life.  They’ve cut away the roots that nourished our culture and our people.  And maybe they’ve done it purposefully.  Maybe they think they should get rid of most of us.  Or maybe they want to end humanity altogether including themselves.  I’m not sure which.

It may be that the western world and America in particular will needs a revival.  It has happened several times in America’s history that a religious revival has swept across large areas of the country to restore purpose and energy to the communities here.  It might coincide with a financial crisis or a war.  Usually religious leaders would declare a “crusade” to attack a spiritual problem like alcoholism or gambling.

I don’t know if there are any religious leaders in the mainline churches who aren’t already coopted by the Left.  I guess it could be anyone coming from any background.  Maybe it won’t even be a religious man.  But it will have to be someone who can speak eloquently and to the point.  That man must preach against the Left in all its various forms.

What is needed is someone who can confidently and convincingly attack the Left and all it stands for.  He will need to provide a coherent and comprehensive plan to reestablish Western Civilization as it flourished a hundred years ago.  He will have to be a Moses to lead the people back into the promised land.  He will have to cast down the golden calf and provide the people with the commandments they need to restore order to their lives.  What does that metaphor equate to in our current world?  So many things.  Probably the most fundamental commandment will be return to living in functional families.  And that means abandoning the feminist model of working women who produce one child sometime in their late thirties or early forties.  It means stay at home moms who raise their children themselves.  And men who work to support those families.  And spend the rest of their time at home with their wives and children and in their communities.  That is the central theme of a revival.

Next, the schools need to be reformed.  All the leftist propaganda must be stripped away from kindergarten to graduate school.  All of the intersectional studies programs must be eliminated.  No good ever came from Women’s Studies or Queer Studies or Africana Studies.  Ever.  Schools must return to their original purpose; vocational training.  Whether it’s advanced physics or carpentry teaching a valid skill as a means to making a living is what we pay colleges to teach our children.  If they don’t accomplish that then shut them down.

And last but not least we have to reform our federal government.  And this is the most difficult reform of all.  The managerial state has become our master.  It dictates to us how we must live in excruciating detail; what we must do and what is forbidden.  The prophet we need must have laws to reform the government and cast out the masters who have made us slaves.

That is what we need; someone of gigantic stature to reform our society.  It’s an almost impossible task.  But if no one appears we are surely doomed.  We will sink into serfdom and even our elites will be pushed aside by abler cultures that maintained their understanding of what makes a healthy culture.  Where is our Moses?

Playing With Three-Year-Old’s Is Not Child’s Play

Men of my generation generally have very little practical experience raising children.  Being born in the Silurian Epoch meant that back then wives were stay at home moms who raised their children and only complained if the paychecks stopped appearing on time.  Sure, on weekends and at night we would meet up with the next generation and attempt to play with them to some extent but we always had their moms there to mediate any difficult situations.  And at night the toddlers were already winding down toward sleep and on the weekends, we could bring them outside where our longer legs meant that just by virtue of walking, we could burn off their excess energy.

But here I am forty years later and generation two of Camera Girl’s great science experiment is winding down and I find myself at the mercy of Princess Sack of Potatoes and her edict that she must be amused.  Currently this involves me portraying an Angry Polar Bear (racist stereotyping some might say) by growling feebly and chasing her in a circle between the kitchen, dining room, foyer, hallway and back again.  Now this doesn’t sound particularly strenuous.  And so, I believed for the first five minutes.  But she has stamina.  I can get a one-minute reprieve every five minutes or so.  But she can keep this up for half an hour.  And even at the end of this ordeal I felt I had acquitted myself admirably and survived the experience unscathed.  But after lunch I suddenly found myself lapsing into unconsciousness.  Even the addition of caffeine seemed powerless to restore my flagging energy.

In my defense I have to assure you that I make an effort to remain active.  I will spend thirty minutes a day on the rowing machine and also work out on a lat-machine and do some calisthenics.  And even right after these exertions I feel fine, even invigorated.  I was forced to admit something unthinkable, raising little kids is harder than real work.  I even admitted this to Camera Girl.  I could see the look of scorn in her eyes.  She had probably been waiting most of her life for this moment.

But after a little reflection I’ve gained a new insight on this phenomenon.  God and nature had shaped men and women to fulfill their differing destinies.  Men were made heroically strong and courageous to fight off saber-tooth tigers and repo men while women were given the patience and stamina it requires to cook the saber-tooth tigers and repo men we provide and also to run in circles after three-year-old’s for hours at a time.  This newfound insight calmed me and restored my sense of balance in this topsy turvy world we live in.  I quickly explained this new theory to Camera Girl and how this meant that my fatigue was just the universe’s way of saying that I should save up my titanic strength for the next zombie apocalypse or asteroid strike that was sure to be coming around the bend anytime.  It’s funny, that look still seemed to be in her eye.  Probably my imagination.

So, I have initiated a new game with Princess Sack of Potatoes.  Instead of chasing her in circles I pretend to be sleeping on the floor.  And if she gets too close, I grab her by the shin, pull her down, growl at her and tickle her mercilessly for twenty seconds and then release her to run away.  I find I can keep up this game for any number of cycles without the least effort.  These women are so inefficient.

Ending Off 2021 Right

2020 was a nightmare from beginning to end and 2021 didn’t begin any better.  2021 started off as pure poison.  But the naked fraud and inexcusable subverting of the law has disgusted and radicalized whole segments of the population that up until now were sleep walking through the coup.  And what we’ve seen for the last five months is the chickens finally coming home to roost.  The combination of economic disaster, naked cronyism in the legislature and incompetence in multiple departments of the executive branch has turned the voting public against Dementia Joe and his lackeys.  And 2022 promises to be even worse for these crooks and weirdos.  It promises to be a disaster from beginning to end.  And all of this bad news for the bad guys has given me the opportunity to sendoff 2021 in style.

I just finished off the Christmas holiday exactly as I had hoped it would go.  All of my grandkids were over today and after having a Camera Girl feast that included roast beast and all the fixings, I basked in the bright light of all that youthful energy.  Most of the energy was dissipated shooting nerf projectiles at each other and the surroundings.  But there were some proceedings that I was qualified to join in.  And there was a fun toy that they brought along.  I bought the boys an Oculus virtual reality (VR) headset about two years ago.  I asked them about it recently and they talked about a fun module that they could run on the headset and I asked them to bring it over for me to try.  It’s a simulation of a rollercoaster.  Now it wouldn’t occur to me that wearing a visor over my eyes would in some way simulate the sensation of motion that happens when you ride on a rollercoaster but so help me it does!  The visual stimuli of riding around on a fast-moving car that is constantly changing direction and speed even convinces the pit of your stomach that you’re climbing and plunging on the tracks of a coaster.  I convinced Camera Girl to put it on but she has such extreme motion sickness that she yanked the headset off her face after barely ten seconds.  She told me she would have been violently ill if she had waited any more time at all.  Such a big baby!

Then I convinced my little granddaughter to watch the old Disney movie Dumbo.  She was very hesitant because she is marvelously sensitive to cinematic sadness.  When the baby elephant was separated from his mother, I thought Princess Sack of Potatoes was going to burst out crying.  I had to convince her to hang in there because there would be a reunion.  Sure enough, once that occurred, she was enthralled by the song the mother elephant cooed to her child.  Unfortunately, she had to go home before she got to see the happily ever after ending but she’ll be back next week to finish it off.

And the sum total of all the human interactions between kids, parents and grandparents over the course of two days of feasting, playing and talking was the perfect ending to a holiday that is the perfect ending to a year.  With the kids off until after the New Year we’ll get a chance to spend more time together to talk about high school and college decisions and their day-to-day doings.  I recently sent the older boys a bunch of science fiction novels and apparently, they’re were very favorably impressed with the stories so I’ll get their feedback on these.  And we’ll play few games of pool now that they’ve mastered the fundamentals of holding the cue and lining up a shot.  And we’ll spend the next week finishing off the leftovers from the feast.  And they promised they’d help me to figure out if there is an easy and inexpensive way to play Doom 2 on the Oculus VR system.  I’ve always wanted to revisit that video game without the restriction of having to use a joystick or keyboard to look behind my back for the monster that is always sneaking up on me in that game.

So, all this will recharge my batteries to endure the colossal amounts of dishonesty and stupidity that will be on display by all the politicians who will make 2022 a veritable marathon of evil.  After the fact, I see now what I missed during the COVID crisis.  I was isolated from the things that make life worth living.  Spending time with the people in your life that count is several orders of magnitude more important than all the other things you do with your time.  Making sure there are people left who care about the things you care about is the justification for fighting against the Left.  If we prevailed over the Left but those people were lost to us then none of it would personally benefit us.  It would be at best an intellectual exercise and personally meaningless.  So, I intend to enjoy my time off with loved ones and prioritize those activities right now.  Later on, I’ll get back to ranting about the losers who are out there mucking up this beautiful world.

Christmas in the Woke World

Christmas Cooking, Sony A7 III, Sony 90mm f\2.8 macro lens

If you have very religious friends then you know that many people have always felt that the public face of Christmas has always been tainted by the commercial nature of the holiday in our culture.  They are outraged that the secular elements of Christmas overshadow the sacred nature of the holiday.

Maybe from their point of view what is happening in the culture now is no worse than the former commercialism.  Well, now it’s everyone else’s turn to be outraged.  Of course, the present outrage isn’t confined to commercialism.  We’re dealing with the destruction of a whole civilization and its replacement by nihilism.  But maybe the course of action everyone will be forced to adopt is basically the same as that taken by religious people living in a secular society.  The religious communities have to provide analogs for all the secular institutions around them.  They send their children to religious grammar and high schools.  Their churches sponsor children’s sports teams and fraternal organizations and social occasions where families can get together and young people can find friends.  And these organizations can act as networking opportunities for professional advancement and community projects.  Even politics can be centered around church membership.

If you don’t happen to be religious this may pose a problem in today’s woke society.  Outside of churches the Left has exerted massive pressure to warp and control the other organizations existing in the world today.  Public schools are hotbeds of homosexual recruitment and even stranger things like the indoctrination of middle-school kids into the transgender delusion.  The Boy Scouts have been co-opted, the large corporations are saturated with diversity, inclusion and equity programming and the federal government is an occupying army.

So, there’s only one way forward.  You have to do it all yourself.  Anything you want to preserve about Christmas, you are going to have to sponsor personally.  So, let’s say you want to encourage the religious aspects of Christmas.  Then you are going to have to make sure you bring the kids to church and tell them what you believe.  And if there are cultural traditions or family traditions you want to preserve then you better take the time to teach the kids and the grandkids about them and why they are important.  And let’s face it, if you don’t really believe in the importance of these things, you won’t be able to convince anyone else that they are important.

Luckily for me, I love old fashioned Christmas.  I love getting together with the family and eating a great big meal and passing the time together playing games and telling stories about the old days to the kids and talking about the minor news and events in the family and the community.  I love to put on some old movie like “A Christmas Carol” or “A Christmas Story” and introduce it to another generation.  I love to spend time with my kids and grandkids and hear about their lives and maybe provide a sympathetic ear to someone who needs to talk or make the encouraging noises that everyone likes to hear and sometimes really needs.  And if the talk turns to things going on in the larger world state your opinion honestly and fearlessly.  Don’t mince words about the Democrats and especially not about the truly insane fringes of the Left.

And Christmas is just one chapter of what needs to be done.  Every aspect of normal life and Western Civilization needs the same treatment.  Be vocal and comfortable about cheerleading for the good things in the old culture that need to be defended and nurtured.  Encourage the kids to think about important parts of their lives that they will have to attend to.  Finding a job, finding a spouse, raising a family.  These are things that don’t go without saying.  Say them.  Provide practical help for things like career counseling, finding activities, even providing them with help like a lift to a job or an activity.  After all most parents are stretched pretty thin.  If a granddad has the time, he should make himself useful.

So that’s enough talk.  We’re headed out Christmas Eve in the afternoon to one of my daughters.  That’s going to be fun.  And then Christmas dinner is at my house and that will be grand.  All the grandkids will be there and I will be in my glory.

Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night.

Guest Contributor – Chemist – Reclaiming Christmas

Mrs. Chemist and I are still working but plan to take the week between Christmas and New Year’s off.

One of the things I loved the most about Christmas vacation as a child was the lack of responsibility – the absolute immunity from having to do anything. It was glorious!

Then, as I got older, responsibilities started to inject into my Christmas vacation. First it was term papers and other assignments over “Winter Break”. Later, my brief career in retail required I work harder that week than any other week of the year. (Retailers call the week between Christmas and New Years the “Thirteenth month” because they do as much business that week as a typical month through the year. After that it was graduate school when the lab and the instruments were barely used and I could get more work done. Then, early in my professional career, I worked through holidays and weekends to prove myself.

I’m done with that.

Mrs. Chemist and I will spend at least one day doing absolutely nothing: No chores, no shopping, no work, no news – nothing a responsible adult “Needs” to do. We plan to sleep late, enjoy each other, watch movies, eat bad food and just enjoy.

We are really looking forward to it.

Ah, Distinctly I Remember It Was in the Bleak December

Today was a sort of busy day.  Family matters and also, I got a couple of thousand words done for my book.  So, the day was over quickly.  I read through the news and didn’t see anything compelling to rant about.  I watched “The Holly and the Ivy” tonight and that got me back in the spirit of the season but it was late and with the sun gone so early this close to the Winter Solstice I find my energy fails earlier.  So here I am pondering weak and weary upon a midnight dreary.  It seems very quiet tonight.  Possibly that’s just my own stillness but I still want to puzzle out something about the day.

I think what I’m sensing is the contrast between the sacred and the profane.  But maybe it would be better saying good and evil.  I’m thinking about all the positive, life-affirming things tied up with Christmas.  Family, benevolence toward your fellow man, celebration, community and a sense of the holiness of the season.  And then I think about Joe Biden, Chuck Schumer, Nancy Pelosi, “The Squad,” the awful people in the media, George Soros, all the monsters in the FBI and the Justice Department, the psychopaths in Antifa and BLM.  The idea that these people can exist in the same society that honors Christmas seems inconceivable.

And the answer is that it is inconceivable.  We do not exist in the same society.  Sometimes when it’s convenient, they pretend we are one people but that is patently false.  They believe in none of the things we do.  Every action they perform is to destroy that world that we inherited and love.  Christmas is at the epicenter of all they despise and envy.  Parents and children enjoying time off from work to visit grandparents, aunts, uncles and especially cousins are an indictment of their failures as normal human beings.  Producing and supporting a family is a heresy for them, a sin against Gaia.

So, it is at this time of the rolling year that the stark contrast between my personal world and the official goings on of post-America clash most severely.  Joe Biden is a monster who has lived such a horrible and phony life that he has produced Hunter Biden as his replacement in this world.  And Biden is emblematic of what we see all around us.  Something as moronically named as TikTok had a campaign on it to call in threats to middle schools all over America.  School Boards all over America are threatening concerned parents with arrest if they dare complain about malpractice in the schools over propaganda they are teaching the children.  This is a broken world and it’s not accidental.  It’s a concerted effort to destroy anything that is healthy and good.

So that’s the thing I sense.  It’s the disconnect.  Christmas was always a special time of the year but now it’s an anomaly.  It’s this island of joy and happiness in an ocean of dysfunction and malice.  But because of this very difference and rarity it must be enjoyed and cherished almost desperately.  You have to drain the experience down to the very last drop.  Maybe because it has to last a very long time every minute needs to be put to good use.  And as much as possible exclude the outside world and all its horror from your sight and mind.

So, when you make your plans for the holiday do your utmost to leave the newscasts and the social media far from your eyes.  Concentrate on family, food and fun and recharge those batteries as best you can.  It comes but once a year.

Praying Mantises, Children’s Books and Pa – Part 7 – The Next Generation

Well as Milo intimated a month ago, our rescued Mantis has laid an egg case.

Currently the proud mother is still alive although I suspect that after laying her eggs her life span may be limited.  I’ll put the egg case in a cold area for the winter and then put it outside in spring.  Princess Sack of Potatoes will probably equate this phenomenon to the story of Charlotte’s Web that we recently watched.  Well, I’ll have to say the project has really paid dividends.

Here’s mom.

He Restoreth My Soul

Psalm 23 (King James Version)

23 The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.

2 He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.

3 He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.

4 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.

5 Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.

6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.

“He restoreth my soul.”  The perfect words.  Getting together with the family, especially the grandkids did just that.  Fooling around at the pool table with my younger grandsons and watching old movies and eating absurd amounts of fattening foods and joking and laughing was “A Medicine for Melancholy.”  Camera Girl clocked multiple days of preparation and cooked up a storm.  She fell asleep exhausted last night but woke up today smiling and looking forward to the Friday sequel when even more family will be over.

I sat down and talked about current business problems with one of my sons-in-law.  He runs a medium-sized manufacturing plant and they just can’t find good help at any reasonable price.  But just telling his situation to someone who knows what he’s talking about is therapeutic and I was glad he confided in me.  Maybe I’ll figure out something that could help.  But just talking is good.  We all get wrapped up in our own problems.  We lose track of how others, even close family, are getting along or aren’t getting along.  Knowing that someone else would benefit from some small help is valuable.  We break out of our silos as they say in management speak.

How about that!  The world isn’t quite ready to collapse yet.  We’ll get to breathe and eat and laugh and cry.  There are all kinds of useful things we can do right around us even as Dementia Joe and the rest of the looters figure out new ways to degrade this once great nation.

Talk to your friends and family.  Spend time with them.  Figure out how you can help them.  Make their lives better and it’ll make your life better too.  The world doesn’t really consist just of trans-gender lunatics and critical race theory propagandists.  It consists of your family and friends and the life they have to lead.  Sure, those other things impact them and you can help to offset some of that harm with information you can provide.  But the focus is on the positive things that you do and say.  Do them.  Say them.  Because it’s the neglect of doing the things that need to be done that leaves room for the madness to creep in.

I must sound like someone hopped up on amphetamines but it’s just amazing.  The COVID isolation must have beat my soul down pretty bad.  Because the lift I got from a regular Thanksgiving get together is phenomenal.    Hopefully by Monday I’ll be able to muster up some gloom and doom.  But right now, I’m looking forward to round two.  Enjoy your long holiday weekend.

 

Here’s a repeat of Camera Girl’s Thanksgiving Turkey.  But it deserves another photo.