Monday, May 26, 2008

An Intelligent US President

Former US president Jimmy Carter shares his views on Israel's position on Palestine and nuclear weapons. I have to say that I think he seems like quite an alright bloke. As far as I can remember (and I can unfortunately mainly only remember the current President Bush) the US presidents have usually been of the species idiot. I can't really say I like Bill Clinton either, even though I can hardly remember any of his policies. Following his wife's campaign to become a presidential candidate I have, however, concluded that he belongs to the same species as Bush.
Were people wiser in the old days? I doubt it. The US history has suffered quite a few incompetent presidents, I mean, even the famous Lincoln himself had his weird policies.
Having spent 8,5 hours in the library today revising Khrushchev, Stalin, Lenin, Trotsky and Bukharin it makes my day a little brighter to see a political leader who isn't totally stupid. To be fair, I don't even know if I would count Carter as stupid at all since I don't know what he did during his term of office.
Anyway, thank you Jimmy Carter for making my day a bit brighter and making me not lose all hope in political leaders. Really, thank you!

Monday, May 19, 2008

The Violence in South Africa

This day started out as a really good day. My mom helped me get rid of my stress last night and I woke up and felt good, really good in fact. Then I started to read the newspapers.
BBC reports that people fleeing from Zimbabwe into the country are being attacked. So far, BBC states, at least 13 people have been killed. Dagens Nyheter (in Swedish) reports that 22 people have been killed. Why!? Why do people have to do this to each other? Why can't we just help? After all, it does not come down to nationality, race, religion or anything else. We are all humans. You, me, the sweaty guy next to you in the queue, the dodgy-looking guy on the subway, even the little baby screaming so loud when you're hungover. They are all human, so why can we just not try to coexist in peace? I mean, for all that you know, that guy could be your relative.
Now I need more coffee to start this day.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

La Belle Dame Sans Merci

While I'm doing poetry I'm going to take this opportunity to write down my favourite poem. It is absolutely beautiful. I love the supernatural element in it, and I think it says a lot about love. It's a story about a knight who meets an elf (La Belle Dame Sans Merci, which means "the beautiful lady without mercy"). I'm not sure if I have written it here before or not, but here it is anyway:

La Belle Dame Sans Merci (John Keats, 1884)

O WHAT can ail thee, knight-at-arms,
Alone and palely loitering?
The sedge has wither’d from the lake,
And no birds sing.

O what can ail thee, knight-at-arms!

So haggard and so woe-begone?
The squirrel’s granary is full,
And the harvest’s done.

I see a lily on thy brow
With anguish moist and fever dew,
And on thy cheeks a fading rose
Fast withereth too.

I met a lady in the meads,
Full beautiful—a faery’s child,
Her hair was long, her foot was light,
And her eyes were wild.

I made a garland for her head,
And bracelets too, and fragrant zone;
She look’d at me as she did love,
And made sweet moan.

I set her on my pacing steed,
And nothing else saw all day long,
For sidelong would she bend, and sing
A faery’s song.

She found me roots of relish sweet,

And honey wild, and manna dew,
And sure in language strange she said—
“I love thee true.”

She took me to her elfin grot,
And there she wept, and sigh’d fill sore,
And there I shut her wild wild eyes
With kisses four.

And there she lulled me asleep,
And there I dream’d—Ah! woe betide!
The latest dream I ever dream’d
On the cold hill’s side.

I saw pale kings and princes too,
Pale warriors, death-pale were they all;
They cried—“La Belle Dame sans Merci
Hath thee in thrall!”

I saw their starved lips in the gloam,
With horrid warning gaped wide,
And I awoke and found me here,
On the cold hill’s side.

And this is why I sojourn here,

Alone and palely loitering,
Though the sedge is wither’d from the lake,
And no birds sing.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Speaking of Human Rights

This made me really happy. Let's hope the Church and the rest of the states catch on and realises that same-sex marriage isn't a sin. It is love in as pure a form as between a man and a woman. Something has to be really wrong when people are trying to stop love in today's world.

Blogging for Human Rights

Amnesty International is asking everyone to blog for human rights today to draw attention to the problems in the world when it comes to this issue.
For me, human rights, like equality, is something that people just should have. All the human beings, no exceptions. It is not a discussion matter, it is something that is evident.
Unfortunately there are idiots around the world that do not agree with me. To take a recent example: the government in Myanmar who refuse to let help into the country after the devastating cyclone that ruined a country where a lot of people already live under the poverty level. What really baffles me is why do they not accept help when people and organizations are more than willing to give it to them? There is no way the military regime can handle this alone. With that many people already living in poverty before the cyclone, it is quite obvious the country does not have resources to handle a disaster of this size.
What is really saddening as well is that in these kinds of regimes, Human Rights Watch has had to warn people not to leave their aid unattended, since the regime may steal the supplies, BBC writes. That is just plain horrible. They fear that over 2 million people in Burma can be starving and the regime wants to steal food aid. Once again, why?
Human rights is something that we all should actively promote. Join an organization, donate some money to causes supporting human rights, or just keep the discussion alive. As long as the word is spreading, more people can be mobilized, and those people who need our help have a bigger chance of being helped.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

It's a hit

I know I don't usually do lyrics, but these lyrics are just too good to be ignored. It's Rilo Kiley - It's a Hit. Even if the song wasn't fabulous, the lyrics would still make it an awesome song.

Any chimp can play human for a day.
Use his opposable thumbs to iron his uniform
and run for office on election day
fancy himself a real decision maker
and deploy more troops than salt in a shaker.

But it's a jungle when war is made,
and you'll panic and throw your own shit at the enemy.
The camera pulls back to reveal your true identity.
Look, it's a sheep in wolf's clothing.
A smoking gun holding ape.

Any asshole can open up a museum.
Put all of the things he loves on display
so everyone could see them.
The house, a car, a thoughtful wife
ordinary moments in his ordinary life.

But if she breaks a smile, she'll give you away
'cause no one wants to pay to see your happiness.
No one wants to pay to see your day to day
and I'm not buying it either
but I'll try selling it anyway.

Any idiot can play Greek for a day
and join a sorority or write a tragedy
and articulating all that pain
and maybe you'll get paid.

But it's a sin when success complains,
and your writers block-it don't mean shit.
Just throw it against the wall and see what sticks.
Gotta write a hit
I think this is it.
It's a hit.

And if it's not,
then it's a holiday for a hanging
yeah it's a holiday for a hanging
yeah it's a holiday for a hanging
yeah shoo-bop-shoo-bop my baby

Any fool can play executioner for a day,
and say with fingers pointed in both directions
'he went thataway',
It's only a switch or syringe,
awh, exempt from eternal sins.
But you still wear a cross,
and you think you're gonna get in.

Ah, but the pardons never come from up-stairs.
They're always a moment too late,
but it's entertainment
keep the crowd on their toes,
it's justice, we're safe.
It's not a hit, it's a holiday
shoo-bop-shoo-bop my baby

It's a holiday for a hanging, yeah
It's a holiday for a hanging, yeah
It's a holiday for a hanging, yeah
It's a holiday for a hanging, yeah

I'm a holiday for a hanging,
I'm a holiday for a hanging,
I'm a holiday yeah
I'm a holiday for a hanging,

It's a holiday for a hanging, yeah

Ps. If you already didn't, read the lyrics through and have the current president of USA in mind...