Standing Up To Putin

I don’t have high hopes that Trump will say anything derogatory to scorn his Russian friend at the upcoming summit meeting.  That little old ant thought that he could move that rubber tree plant, while that silly old ram kept butting that dam, but Trump is just a toy balloon and I am hoping that he will burst soon, as he is being complicit in the exploitation of the Russian people by indulging Putin and chances are they’re bound to go pop.  Many people feel that Trump should abandon the talks altogether after the 12 indictments that special counsel Robert S. Mueller has handed down to members of the Russian military intelligence branch on charges of hacking American computers.  Woebegone as Trump is not focused on protecting elections and he will try to avoid a kerfuffle at any cost.  Normally I would cheer for any chance that leaders could get together and sit down to hash out their problems, but I don’t see any reform coming out of these meetings, if Trump is not willing to call out Putin for interfering with the American government.

According to legend, King Solomon had this ring which was given to him by God, and it allowed him control demons, but I don’t think that Trump has a ring like this to control the demon Vladimir Putin.  Ownership of all major Russian enterprises is now tight in the grip of Putin and his cronies, who rather than investing in their nation’s development, stash their money outside the country (some of it in Trump-branded luxury condominiums).  This is a new form of low, as all the wealth of all the Russians apart from the Putin mafia barely equals the amount that Russia’s leaders have spirited out of the country.  The Russian people have a long climb ahead of them as long as Putin is their ruler.  Trump said that does not expect to have a Perry Mason moment when he meets with Putin, but if Trump would only call out Putin for all of the lies that he has spread, the Russians citizens might begin to wake up, look around and notice the pattern that is leading them down a path to destruction.

It seems so simple to me, but it is not because the Russian government has spent years getting control of the media and now reporters are picked by the Kremlin, as Putin has forced all the major TV channels to submit to his will.  This is the real fake news and any story that is thought to be unreasonable would not be published, or it might have to go through some type of trim to take the edge off of it.  It does not take a firefighter to know that Moscow is tired of being manipulated by the Kremlin’s non news items that does nothing to uncover the unethical behavior and social injustice that is taking place in Russia today.  My great aunt told me that when she ran out of toilet paper while living in Russia, that she would wipe her ass with pictures of Putin from the newspapers, because she thought he deserved that.

The Kremlin keeps trying to promote the pop-culture fame that their leader has achieved, and this is done by publishing a shirtless image of Putin strolling along the gravel banks of a Siberian river in army boots and camouflage pants, wearing a cross around his neck.  In March of this year, a group of Russian activists spent the night in jail after they spray painted a giant slogan against President Vladimir Putin on the frozen surface of a major river in the center of his hometown.  During the World Cup this year, Russians on social media were tying themselves up in knots trying to guess why Vladimir Putin was a no show at the event.

Written for Daily Addictions prompt – Abandon, for FOWC with Fandango – Legend, for July Writing Prompts – Chances are, for Sheryl’s A New Daily Post Word Prompt – Scorn, for Ragtag Community – Kerfuffle, for Scotts Daily Prompt – Firefighter, for Mindlovemisery’s Menagerie Sunday Writing Prompt “Reform”, for the Sunday Whirl Wordle 358 prompts – climb simple low tight trim gravel pattern path spread spray knots edge, for Swimmers the New Community Pool prompt – demon, for Teresa’s Haunted Wordsmith Three Things Challenge prompts – great aunt, ant, plant and for Word of the Day Challenge Prompt – Woebegone.

3.2.1 Quote Me!

I was tagged on a post made by Jill yesterday to participate in this writing challenge.

Here are the rules:

Thank the Selector – Thanks for selecting me Jill.
Post 2 quotes for the dedicated Topic of the Day which is: Age – Age, Ageing, Aged.
There is a third rule, but I try to discourage chain mail, so I am ignoring this part.

I have no idea why Jill would associate me with being old or ageing, but I guess that I have been around the block a few times.  Most of the hair on my head has fallen out and the few that are left have turned gray, but I don’t think that I am any worse for the wear.  Yes I do sleep more than when I was young and I am not as active any more, but I don’t consider myself to be an antiquated, worn out, moth-eaten senior citizen.  I will admit to being elderly, over the hill, a bit timeworn and even being an oldie, but I am not an antique, or passé, ancient, creaky or rusty, because my mind is still sharp.  If I were to take a retrospective view at my life, I would say that I am the perfect age.

My first quote is from Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche who was a German philosopher, cultural critic, composer, poet, philologist and a Latin and Greek scholar and his work has exerted a profound influence on Western philosophy and modern intellectual history.  My second quote comes from François-Marie Arouet who is better known as Voltaire, and he was a major French writer whose works and activities influenced the course of European civilization.

Friedrich Nietzsche “Profundity of thought belongs to youth, clarity of thought to old age.”

Voltaire “What most persons consider as virtue, after the age of 40 is simply a loss of energy.”

As a bonus I have included an original quote of my own accord, however it has nothing to do with ageing.

“If my appearance resembled that of Rosanne Barr even in the slightest bit, then I wouldn’t go around making fun of the way that anyone else looked.”

Aristotle Student of Plato and Teacher of Alexander the Great

I saw this writing challenge ‘Genius of the Ancient World’ on Ray NotBradbury which is a site that I follow and it looked like fun to me.  The idea is to use three quotes from an ancient philosopher and I chose Aristotle.  Aristotle’s words were rewritten by his students and translated many times, so a lot of the quotes that are attributed to him are often judged by others as being fake.

Quality is not an act, it is a habit.

Habits are learned behaviors, which can become automatic after enough repetition.  You are what you repeatedly do and qualities are acquired by acting in a particular way.  Aristotle wrote ‘Categories’ around 350 BC and in Part 8 he talks about quality.  By ‘quality’ he means that in virtue of which people are said to be such and such.  “Quality is a term that is used in many senses.  One sort of quality let us call ‘habit’ or ‘disposition’.  Habit differs from disposition in being more lasting and more firmly established.  The various kinds of knowledge and of virtue are habits, for knowledge, even when acquired only in a moderate degree, is, it is agreed, abiding in its character and difficult to displace, unless some great mental upheaval takes place, through disease or any such cause.  The virtues, also, such as justice, self-restraint, and so on, are not easily dislodged or dismissed, so as to give place to vice.”

The roots of education are bitter, but the fruits are sweet.

Learning anything can be hard and tedious, and it may also come with an assortment of other difficulties, but once knowledge is gained, then you are on your way to success.  If you put in the hard work that is required, it will pay off in the end.  I believe that anything that you learn is of some value, but I also believe that our education system is broken.  I can’t really say that the Common Core State Standards Initiative is why our system is broken as it is much more complicated than any single issue, but I don’t think it is helping.  Common Core is an educational initiative that was put in place in 2010 that details what K–12 students throughout the United States should know in English language arts and mathematics at the conclusion of each school grade.  Common Core is not working, as measured by its own standards and metrics.  The National Report Card reveals that two-thirds of graduating seniors are not ready for college.  Seventy-five percent failed the math test and sixty-three percent failed the reading test.

It is during our darkest moments that we must focus to see the light.

Life is about making it through the darkness of night and reaching the light of day, as we will all encounter times of happiness and times of sorrow.  Everyone must learn how to get through the tough times by focusing on the light ahead. We will all go through a rough patch from time to time, encounter a tragedy, have relationship problems, etc., but you must be strong, so you are able to pull through the hard times.  Instead of dwelling on bad things, think about good things that could happen in the future.  There is no easy and definite answer for what this life has in store for you, as we are all given unique challenges and we must not engage in a defeatist self-pity syndrome where we find blame in everything, and mope about being stuck in the darkness.  As an alternative, we should cut through the clutter and find a way out of the dark woods, by putting our focus on solutions instead of our problems.

Also Known As Cunnilingus

I always wondered why engaging in oral sex on a female is called eating out, I mean like am I supposed to bring a fork and knife along with me to get the job done properly?  I know that oral sex is done by stimulating your partner’s genitals with your mouth, lips or tongue, where a guy or perhaps another girl will be given access to your most intimate area and then they start kissing their way down your body, till they reach the sweet spot.   I wonder if a person suffering from dyslexia might have a problem that would cause them to juxtapose some of the female body parts.

I usually start off by kissing my partner on her lips, the ones that are part of her mouth, before I  place my tongue and lips on her genitals (vagina, clit, pussy) and begin my licking or nibbling process.  I usually do not go around licking my food unless it is ice cream, or nibbling my food unless I am eating grapes, but I imaging the term eating out comes from these acts of licking and nibbling.  I never know how many licks it will take to finish my ice cream, as finishing is not what is important, at least for me.  I can see how finishing would be important for the girl though.  To me success is a journey, not a destination, and the journey is much more important than the destination.  Although food and sex sound like a good combination, when put them together they are not as sexy as you might think that they would be.  There are a plethora of issues that come up when you mix food during sex, like infections and irritations.

I watched this movie the other night that featured Nyotaimori which is the Japanese practice of serving sashimi or sushi from the naked body of a woman.  Even though the kitchen and the sushi are disinfected beforehand and the woman’s privates are covered with exotic flowers or banana leaves, this practice seems highly unsanitary to me.  I don’t like sushi, but this may be where the term eating out was derived from.  I always make it a point to avoid having sex when food is mixed in as the last thing that I want is to wake up the next morning with itchy and smelly private parts, or sticky bedding, among many other things, although I was a bit tempted the time when my girlfriend said that she could drive me wild with pop rocks.

Look Who is Back

  

Janet said, “Come quick, the squirrel is back looking for more peanuts.”  Jeremy said, “Honey we just got that letter from our homeowners association which prevents us from providing any critters with food either purposefully or accidentally.”  Janet said, “Screw them, that squirrel is so cute and I would just love to nestle up with him and I am sure that giving him a few peanuts will not harm anyone.  No matter how heavily populated our neighborhood is, some wild animals are going to live in the surrounding woods and we must learn how to share the space with them peacefully.”

Jeremy said, “Baby I am happy that you are exerting your maternal instincts, but the most effective way to coexist is to have appropriate rules in place and let the wild animals be wild.  If we start to feed one of the squirrels, then he will probably tell all of his buddies where they can get a free meal and then numerous squirrels will start to amass in our back yard and they may even create a ceremony around it.  They may seem cute, but squirrels are wild animals, so you can never predict their behavior as it could become deleterious.  This particular little guy with that white bushy tail has been absent for a few days and he is looking woebegone, but perhaps he is just parched as it has not rained in a while.  Fill up a bowl of water and I will take that out to him.  Get hopping bunny, before the poor creature dies of thirst.”

Janet said, “While you may think that your acerbic tone is funny, it is not helpful and I don’t appreciate your humor.  I wish I had a magic button that I could press anytime I wanted you to be muted.  Take some peanuts with you when you go out with the water.”

Written for Rachel Poli I Read I Write I Create Time To Write: Picture Prompt 17 and Randomness Inked Scribbling the Unspoken Let it Bleed Weekly Prompt Challenge 20 with the prompt magic and Mindlovemisery’s Menagerie Wordle #198 #Wordle #MLMM #amwriting and the Daily Post where the prompt is ceremony.

Out Of Step Or Archaic

Time is said to change everything and I have seen many changes to the Catholic Church take place in my lifetime.  The Church still has issues with abortion, divorce and gay marriage, but it should not be labeled an antiquated institution.  Pope Francis is pro-life, and there is a good chance that will never change, but he has softened his stance on divorced Catholics.  Pope Francis praised an Argentinean document stating that in some ‘irregular family situations’, people could still receive communion.  Francis thinks that through the “help of sacraments”, this could provide a broader effort to support and integrate divorced and remarried Catholics into the life of the church, and this offers direct evidence that Francis supports a significant change in the way individual priests deal with divorced Catholics.

In 2013, Pope Francis said, “If someone is gay and searches for the Lord and has good will, who am I to judge?”  There is also that incident where a survivor of clerical sexual abuse was told by Pope Francis that God had made him gay and loved him, and this is arguably the most strikingly accepting comments about homosexuality that have been uttered by the leader of the Roman Catholic church.  Pope Francis says transsexuals and gay people should be embraced by the Catholic Church after he met a woman from Spain who later had a sex change to become a man and subsequently married a woman.  He invited the couple to the Vatican, where they told him how upset they had been when a local priest had told them they would “go to hell”.  Francis responded, “Life is life, and things should be taken as they come.  Sin is sin, but tendencies or hormonal imbalances … can cause many problems and we have to be careful.  But each case must be welcomed, accompanied, studied, discerned and integrated.  When a person (who is gay) arrives before Jesus, Jesus certainly will not say, ‘Go away because you are homosexual’.”  Francis then joked saying that they should not go around repeating that the Pope wants to bless transsexuals, as he did not want to have to read that on the front pages of all the newspapers.

When I was young, most of the mass was in Latin, which made it very difficult to follow.  All women were required to cover their hair with a scarf or a hat of some kind.  No one ate meat on Fridays during Lent and now all of this has changed.  Back in the day, communion was only given by the priest and now there are helpers, maybe they are called deacons who help out with this.  I was never given wine at communion, ‘the blood of Christ’ as this was only for the priest and now it is common place to receive both the bread and wine.  Also the role of women being allowed on the altar has changed since I was young.  The church is slow at making changes, but I would not say that it is archaic.

 

Ancient Laws

Around 1780 BC, King Hammurabi (1810-1750 BC) the sixth king of Babylon who reigned from 1792 to 1750 and the first king of the Babylonian Empire, extended Babylon’s control over Mesopotamia by winning a series of wars against neighboring kingdoms.  Hammurabi is known for the set of laws called Hammurabi’s Code, one of the first written codes of law and most complete surviving guide in recorded history.  The Hammurabi code of laws, a collection of 282 rules, established standards for commercial interactions and set fines and punishments to meet the requirements of justice.  Hammurabi’s Code was written in the Akkadian language and carved onto a massive, finger-shaped black stone stele (pillar) which was a single, four-ton slab of diorite, a durable but incredibly difficult stone for carving.  The stele was placed outside the temple of Marduk, the national god of Babylonia.

Many of these laws were indirectly related to water such as, “If a [woman wine-seller] does not accept grain according to gross weight in payment of drink, but takes money, and the price of the drink is less than that of the grain, she shall be convicted and thrown into the water.  If a man’s wife be surprised [having intercourse] with another man, both shall be tied and thrown into the water, but the husband may pardon his wife and the king his slaves.  If the ‘finger is pointed’ at a man’s wife about another man, but she is not caught sleeping with the other man, she shall jump into the river for [the sake of her] husband.  If she is not innocent, but leaves her husband, and ruins her house, neglecting her husband, this woman shall be cast into the water.”

This practice was known as trial by ordeal which has been commonplace in many cultures.  It was believed that the Euphrates River would act as judge of people accused of various crimes.  If, when thrown into the river, the accused floated, she was considered innocent, however if she sank, the river had found her guilty.  If anyone brings an accusation against a man, and the accused goes to the river and leaps into the river, if he sinks in the river his accuser shall take possession of his house.  But if the river proves that the accused is not guilty, and he escapes unhurt, then he who had brought the accusation shall be put to death, while he who leaped into the river shall take possession of the house that had belonged to his accuser.

Hammurabi’s Code provides some of the earliest examples of the doctrine of “lex talionis”, or the laws of retribution, sometimes better known as “an eye for an eye”, which decided that punishment for someone committing an injury should be dealt with in the same manner as that injury.  Some things in the Code of Hammurabi were very cruel and deceiving, while other things were fair and righteous.  If a man was in debt and was unable to pay his creditors, he was to sell his wife, son, or daughter, or bind them over to service.  Many harsh punishments, sometimes demanded the removal of the guilty party’s tongue, hands, breasts, eye or ear for doing certain crimes, but this code is also gave us one of the earliest examples of an accused person being considered innocent until they were proven guilty.  The code contains about 300 laws that discuss a wide range of subjects, including homicide, assault, divorce, debt, adoption, tradesman’s fees, agricultural practices, and even disputes regarding the brewing of beer.  Hammurabi is remembered as a pioneering lawgiver who worked in the words of his monument “to prevent the strong from oppressing the weak and to see that justice is done to widows and orphans.”