Saturday, June 14, 2014

when democracy gets out of hand

Minerva, "the Roman goddess of wisdom and sponsor
of arts, trade, and strategy."

 If you haven't had your cup of "depressing" today, Nafeez Ahmed's blog depiction of the "Minerva Research Initiative" in The Guardian should replenish your stock.

Launched in 2008 – the year of the global banking crisis – the DoD 'Minerva Research Initiative' partners with universities "to improve DoD's basic understanding of the social, cultural, behavioral, and political forces that shape regions of the world of strategic importance to the US."
But, incrementally, as with all dictatorships, the focus shifts ever so slightly:
Last year, the DoD's Minerva Initiative funded a project to determine 'Who Does Not Become a Terrorist, and Why?' which, however, conflates peaceful activists with "supporters of political violence" who are different from terrorists only in that they do not embark on "armed militancy" themselves. The project explicitly sets out to study non-violent activists....
For Minerva, the line between non-violent activists and what have come to be called "terrorists" is hopelessly and perhaps deliberately blurred: If too many non-violent wing-nuts get together, hell, we in the catbird seat of power might be out of a job.

Oh well ... I think the blog post is worth reading, but I can understand why anyone might already be depressed enough.


  1. More efficient empire, coming to a neighborhood near you.

  2. Hullo Genkaku and of all names I remember, thanks olcharlie, glad you are here too.

    Do you realise at all, this blog is like a comfortable cot that a cat snugs itself into.

    I have several stray cats that moved into the main exits of my old residence, my distant neighbour feeds them, even grooms them with social ettiquette; it kinda upset me when one day my mother told me that the white cat that my I fell in love with turns out as a male instead of a female. On the contrary "her" best friend i.e. the black cat turns out as a female instead of a male.

    The natural element of depression here at this blog is amazing. It's very, honest. Being depressed because there is depression, naturally. :)

    Worshipping Avalokitesvara allows me the opportunity of having mangoes every other day, my goddess doesn't eat the mango, I end up having to eat it with the notion of planting another mango tree after that till the extent I ran out of planting pots. Sometimes I find the lack of planting pots a funnier problem than addressing yet another initiative-based charity drive, the problem i.e. that of finding a pot with spare soil is so trivial it annoys me yet versus all that democratic talk about freedom of speech, moments ago I was at Wikipedia an NGO website working out some kinks over a fellow young chap, he was raising funds in order to repel a lawsuit that accrued from him slandering the ruler of the country i.e. the richest prime minister in the world i.e. my premier is officially better paid than Mr Obama. *Honestly again as always, I'll rather olcharlie read my draft ebook telling me where I can improve especially in the context of zen practice I typed that entire damn book without thinking because I was practising how else I could avoid disparaging Buddhism ended up writing a first booklet of 10 plus pages.

    Titled it "Saṃsāra"
    As a tribute of my lack of insight despite years of youthful zen endeavour.

  3. Hi Lionel

    I've suffered from dysthemic depression since i was 10 years old. It's not like major depression, though i do occasionally have such huge dips like when my folks passed away. But mostly it's just a lower than the average grade of what "normal" folks feel. I'm told it's a genetic predisposition, and perhaps to the extent that i didn't make a "normal" recovery when i was 10 that's true. But events do influence it, and so i have to think that depression is a reasonable/natural response to the world. Those who are indifferent don't look, but those who are interested enough to look at the world are inclined to feel either anger or depression. And i'm inclined to think that has to do with energy, anger takes energy, depression takes it away, my thinking is that if you're already low energy that's where you will go.

    I'm happy to help with your ebook as i can. I'll read it and help in any way i can. But i'm not terribly confident in my skills, including my skill at not pushing my views into the mix, though i'll try. lol Hope you are well. Yay mangoes.