My thoughts today

David and I both passed our annual physical. “Except for your joints, you are both in good shape, for your ages,” he declared.  I never know exactly what for your ages means, but we’ve heard it a lot lately.

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I finally finished the very long and complex, but very readable book, Lost Enlightenment: Central Asia’s Golden Age from the Arab Conquest to Tamerlane, by Frederick Starr. I highly recommend it, if you are curious about this area of the world and enjoy reading history.

Basically, it comes down to this…when people eschew rational thinking (i.e., mathematics and science) in favor of an orthodoxy or ideology, society falls apart.

As much as we might desire it, we don’t live in a black and white world and anyone believes a superman is going to “fix” everything is deluded at best.

“Propaganda must always address itself to the broad masses of the people. (…) All propaganda must be presented in a popular form and must fix its intellectual level so as not to be above the heads of the least intellectual of those to whom it is directed. (…) The art of propaganda consists precisely in being able to awaken the imagination of the public through an appeal to their feelings, in finding the appropriate psychological form that will arrest the attention and appeal to the hearts of the national masses. (…) The broad masses of the people are made [of] persons who are constantly wavering between one idea and another. (…) The great majority of a nation are ruled by sentiment rather than by sober reasoning. This sentiment, however, is not complex, but simple and consistent. It is not highly differentiated, but has only the negative and positive notions of love and hatred, right and wrong, truth and falsehood.”

As to the methods to be employed:

“Propaganda must not investigate the truth objectively and, in so far as it is favourable to the other side, present it according to the theoretical rules of justice; yet it must present only that aspect of the truth which is favourable to its own side. (…) The receptive powers of the masses are very restricted, and their understanding is feeble. On the other hand, they quickly forget. Such being the case, all effective propaganda must be confined to a few bare essentials and those must be expressed as far as possible in stereotyped formulas. These slogans should be persistently repeated until the very last individual has come to grasp the idea that has been put forward. (…) Every change that is made in the subject of a propagandist message must always emphasize the same conclusion. The leading slogan must of course be illustrated in many ways and from several angles, but in the end one must always return to the assertion of the same formula.”

~Mein Kampf~

 

 

14 thoughts on “My thoughts today

  1. What does any age “look like” — we all age differently for the whole variety of reasons including genetics, our lifestyle, environment, etc. A few years ago I volunteered my age to a a Director Of Nursing in a retirement community with whom I’d had a chummy friendly relationship for several years. She was startled to learn my age, noting she had thought we were about the same age (I was about 15 yrs older). Ever after she was cordial but very distant. I chose not to query her, but based on other behaviors I became aware of over time, it appeared she was beginning to have an aging crisis, as some do, and possibly became alarmed she could be identifying with such an older person.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I have always identified with older people. I loved the generation that came before me. Because I was an older child I often had the care of younger children. This responsibility at a young age and through my adult years left me a bit bossy. However, I am always the one to act first in a crises when others have lost it.

      David is 87 in September, but as he was a younger child, it is often the case that I, 12.5 years younger, am giving him direction. In fact, when I fly to CA next fall, my neighbor Kathy is going to “check” on him, as he is in denial about his diabetes!

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  2. Congrats of the physicals. You’ve heard the saying “left-handed compliment.” That’s what “for your age” is.

    As for propaganda, it’s not possible that “man-made global warming” falls into that category is it? Naaahh.

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    • Global warming is real. How much humans account for is another issue, and one I don’t have an answer for. However, I still want renewable or green energy as much as we can make. We don’t need to drill on public lands. And water is finite. So, conservation is important.

      Animals, i.e., wetlands need water too. Trump stuck his big nose in a compromise worked out in CA where there are water shortages whether he thinks so or not.

      My son is in charge of water for five SW naval bases. He says it’s important for the Navy to meet its water requirements for its bases. Ships float, you know. I learned a lot more about water over my lifetime than stupid Donald Trump.

      BTW. Did you know that Jack Keane was one of Hillary’s military advisors?

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  3. I recently told a friend how old I was and she was visibly shocked (she is several years older than me) I didn’t know what else to say. An awkward silence and then the conversation went elsewhere. Her going elsewhere. I am still scratching my head about it but as yet no one has said ‘at your age’.

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  4. I’ve been hearing that also in the past few years. “At your age….” A lot of time it was accompanied by a sympathetic smile. Nowadays, it’s just assumed I will accept it as my due. I remember my mother-in-law saying her mind still thought she was 16, but her body kept telling her a different story.

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    • Given Davidhas Diabetes and Osteopenia, he looks pretty good for 87. I have the Anemia I’ve had all my life. Doctor was probably referring to our being able to avoid more disturbing ailments. Of course, this is largely owing to genes.

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  5. It looks like there are people expecting a superman to fix things in various parts of the world today. Scary! We haven’t learned too much since the days of Mein Kampf. I fear for our planet and our grandchildren!

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  6. I’ve come to dread that comment …”you look etc, … FOR YOUR AGE!” So often I hear it from people who have no idea how old I am and that is even more confusing and somehow they seem to think they are giving you a compliment ! Thanks and no thanks.

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