Monuments and Moby Dick

There are a slew of metaphors in these border wall prototypes and the proposal to designate them a singular national monument, which one could argue they already are. And I don’t know quite what is the best of the ‘elegance from idiocy’ interpretations… or how many… oh, it’s America, we can choose all of them:

Which fittingly brings us back to Trump. As with much minimalism, these prototypes are hard-edged geometry and impervious materials brought into the American landscape of the West and arranged to impose order, inspire awe, and try to manage and align mystic political forces — and to make something that while instantly obsolete, like some useless Stalin Gulag project, meant to last forever. Trump has made something that evokes a real monument — one that may correctly be said to stand for everything he believes in. And I think mustn’t be forgotten. The structures represent a menacing presence that imparts brutal cruelty, fear, contempt, and coldhearted malice — something nihilistic and destructive that doesn’t believe in the substance of the American creed but only in the appearance of being cocksure, in theatricality, and manipulative statecraft.

It’s horribly unjust – to them – how each U.S. preznit seems to symbolize the country during his(!) time in office, and though at times it is beautiful, usually the truth only hurts. But this time it’s just stupid, ignorant, fearful, racist and depraved.

Great D.H. Lawrence quote at the end of the article. Nice going.

The Big Picture

That’s the name for a ‘news stories in photographs’ feature on the Boston Globe site and it’s really excellent.

Words can be hurtful and leave permanent scars, but images are even more powerful. They can help explain conditions and situations by harkening back to the essential and human in us. Maybe images can even be helpful to people like the chairman of the House Agriculture committee, who holds great sway over measures that will combat climate change, even though he does not understand what it is.

… has been blocking the passage of comprehensive climate legislation, dismissed a White House report on the damaging effect of global warming on U.S. agriculture. Dr. Jane Lubchenco, the chief of the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Association and one of the top scientists in the Obama administration, called the climate impacts report released yesterday a “clarion call for action” for a problem that “is happening now, and in our own backyards.” However, the Wall Street Journal reports that Peterson, “when asked by reporters Tuesday about the report’s findings, said they run counter to what many in his region are experiencing“:

We’ve just had the biggest floods and coldest winters we’ve ever had. They’re saying to us [that climate change is] going to be a big problem because it’s going to be warmer than it usually is; my farmers are going to say that’s a good thing since they’ll be able to grow more corn.

If you’re in a position of influence and don’t know what you’re talking about, on what basis do you continue talking?

  1. the soothing sounds of one’s own voice
  2. The shill/hack continuum
  3. ?

Maybe someone can draw me a picture.