16, 2013
Crisis+me+ME:  Chomsky, All in the Family, Miller, 20 years, rest
  "They who can give up essential 
   liberty to obtain a little temporary
   safety, deserve neither liberty
   nor safety."
   -- Benjamin Franklin [1]
   "All governments lie and nothing
   they say should be believed.
   -- I.F. Stone.

  1.  Noam Chomsky Continues to Inspire
  2.  All in the Family
  3.  Henry Miller
  4.  Twenty years at home
  5.  The rest
About ME/CFS


This is and is not another crisis item, whence also my title. It is because I found one crisis item, and it isn't because I found no other. So, the rest is filled with me+ME matters, which are in fact on subjects I plan writing on.

1. Noam Chomsky Continues to Inspire

To start with, the one crisis item I found, which again is and isn't one. It is by Jeff Cohen, and I found it on Common Dreams:

It starts as follows:
This month, Noam Chomsky turned 85 – and he’s the subject of a new animated movie focused on his scientific and social philosophies. He has actually seen this movie, unlike other works about him: “I can’t stand watching myself.”

He’s one of the world’s best-known intellectuals and one of the least vain. Or elitist. Put him in a roomful of a thousand social activists (not uncommon surroundings for him) and you’ll see him attempt to meet each of them, one-by-one, until he’s physically removed to rush to the airport or next appointment.

Standing at a podium in his usual brown corduroy sport jacket, he laces his lectures with biting sarcasm toward corporate malefactors, warmongers and their sycophants among intellectual and media elites. But with regular folks, he’s a model of gentleness and compassion that would make Eugene Debs blush with envy.

And indeed, according to Wikipedia on Noam Chomsky he got to be 85 on December 7. In fact, I like Jeff's Cohen tribute, but if you are interested in Chomsky, the Wikipedia article, under the last link, is considerably longer and contains much more information.

As to my being inspired by Chomsky: Yes, I think he is a smart and a brave man, which I think few people are, certainly with his qualities of mind and heart, and who is much more right, or at least in the right direction, than most - nearly all or all - American academics, in quite a number of fields, that comprise at least linguistics, philosophy and politics.

Having said so, I should also add that he hasn't been much on my radar between 1971 and 2009 (and that I am ill since 1.1.1979, which definitely changed a great lot for me).

The reason is in part that I lost interest in his linguistic theories in 1972, mostly through understanding them. I understood his theories from my knowledge of logic, that already then was considerable; I lost interest in them because in Holland it seemed as if everyone in the academic world
in the early seventies was drawing trees all the time to explain the noun phrase structures, and I found that extremely boring and unenlightening, while I also thought that very many people were - somehow - involved in his linguistic theories, and that I could add little or nothing, and thst anyway I was more interested in philosophy and logic than in linguistics.

His non-academic positions - he is, according to Wikipedia, an anarcho-syndicalist and a libertarian socialist - I've always thought sympathetic, but without believing them, mostly because I think mankind is on average not intelligent enough, and perhaps also not moral enough, to practice these ideals on a large scale. (Here I have to add that I come from a communist working class family, and have reflected a lot on leftist ideas and ideals, and it so happens [2] that I dislike most politics and most - strongly - political people, although that dislike is a little less since the NSA has been scanning everyone.)

But in any case: Chomsky definitely is one of the leading intellectuals of the second half of the 20th century, and indeed is so today. And the reasons you may not know about him are mostly that people fear to debate him, because they strongly tend to loose, while his political points of view are not discussed at all by the conformist media: it is not his age or his intelligence that are to blame, but the lack of courage and the lack of intelligence of those who control the media.

2. All in the family  

Now to the non-crisis items, that starts with my very recent seeing of parts of the series "All in the family", that was on TV in the 1970ies, and was then the most popular or one of the most popular TV-series, and that now can be found on Youtube.

In fact, this seeing started last week, mostly because I saw Rob Reiner in a bit of a recent Bill Maher series and asked myself "who is he - don't I know him from something?!".

It turns out that I did know him from the early seventies, when he played Archie Bunker's son in law, who was often referred to as "meathead" ("dead from the neck up") by his father in law.

That is how it started: While having no TV since 1970, I did keep visiting my parents, who had one, and I had seen a few of the "All in the family" series, though not many, and this was also one of the very few things on TV that I did like.

It turns out I still like them, and that there are very many more in the series than I have ever seen or indeed had ever realized were made.

Anyway... I certainly will look at more of them (I am in season 2 out of 9 or 10, although not all programs that were made are available), and I may write about them, if only because most of the problems now are the same as they were then, but much aggrevated by there being many more people, and by forty years of mostly neglected important issues, that still are mostly neglected.

3. Henry Miller 

I have this year written repeatedly about Henry Miller (<- Wikipedia) and have also said that I read a lot of him around 1980, and since then lost all the books I had of him. (I also went through four or five changes of house, and this may be part of the explanation).

It so happens that I picked up "Tropic of Cancer" and "Quiet Days in Clichy", and reread them, and I probably will write about Miller and his books, since I like them, and because he did have something to say, that very few say.

4. Twenty years at home

My last change of home was in 1993, and brought me to where I now have lived 20 years and, apart from 1993, these were indeed twenty years at home: I had the energy to go shopping once a week, and walk twice 300 passes, but I had very little energy for doing other things, and was nearly always at home, and much of the time I was ill, without that ever having been officially recognized, which is still the case.

This living at home for twenty years is considerably less boring than it would have been without computer and without internet, but it is a strange way of living your life, also with very little money, and the only reason it happened to me is that most of the health I had left after the first ten years of my disease, was  destroyed by the city of Amsterdam's gigantic drugscorruption, that denied me four years of sleep from 1988-1992, because the mayor, the aldermen, the city-council members and the Amsterdam bureaucrats all chose to serve the drugsmafia rather than maintain my civil rights, and they still do.

I certainly want to write about this, and the reasons I have written little about this since 2007 are that most Dutchmen don't care much if somebody is destroyed in front of their eyes, if he is not family or a good friend [3], and that I can't speak the truth as I see it without offending the degenerate bastards who were the
mayors, the aldermen, the city-council members and the Amsterdam bureaucrats: I've addressed these people very many times, but I was never even answered, except by two 1-page letters that the matter - illegal drugsdealing, my being gassed and kept out of sleep for four years by the terraces of four cafés within 15 meters of my house - "would not be investigated".

Anyway - I will consider this, and also like to point out that in the last 17 of these 20 years I have built my site, that is presently around 500 MB, mostly of html, mostly written by me, which is a lot more than most people ever write, and also a lot more than any of the Dutch philosophers-with-academic-tenure wrote.

5. The rest

Actually, I have four or five more things I planned to write about today, as subjects I want to write about later, but these will be shifted forward to a later time. This may be tomorrow, if again there are little or no crisis items, or later.


[1] Here it is necessary to insist, with Aristotle, thay the governors do not rule, or at least, should not rule: The laws rule, and the government, if good, is part of its executive power. Here I quote Aristotle from my More on stupidity, the rule of law, and Glenn Greenwald:
It is more proper that law should govern than any of the citizens: upon the same principle, if it is advantageous to place supreme power in some particular persons, they should be appointed to be only guardians, and the servant of laws.
(And I note the whole file I quote from is quite pertinent.)

[2] I believe people come in kinds of characters, and I definitely do not have the character that most people who are much involved in politics do have. This is difficult to explain, and also something I mistook in my late teens, because my father was very much interested in politics, and that I realized only when I was 20, in 1970, since when I paid far less attention to politics than I had before, believing that mankind must be emancipated through science rather than through politics. But as I said: I think this is mostly not voluntary, and indeed many people may not see it as clearly as I see it, because they were not raised in a communist family or did not learn much science. (Also, there are very many more people who are interested in politics rather than in real science.)

[3] This you may very well doubt, because almost everyone pretends differently. I know, and I also know not everyone pretends, but most do, and do so all the time, as can be illustrated from WW II, when in Holland so very few went into the real resistance, even though more than 1% of the Dutch population was  to be gassed, and were clearly maltreated and discriminated. Nearly all of the Dutch did as all of the Dutch Supreme Court members did: they collaborated.

That is the explanation why so many Dutchmen were murdered in WW II: Because nearly all Dutchmen collaborated. And this you can see in times of war, when people really suffer through the negligence and collaboration of others, but it is far less clear cut in times of peace and welfare, when all can pretend as they like, and few are found out.

About ME/CFS (that I prefer to call M.E.: The "/CFS" is added to
facilitate search machine) which is a disease that I have since 1.1. 1979:

1. Anthony Komaroff

Ten discoveries about the biology of CFS(pdf)

3. Hillary Johnson

The Why  (currently not available)

4. Consensus (many M.D.s) Canadian Consensus Government Report on ME (pdf - version 2003)
5. Consensus (many M.D.s) Canadian Consensus Government Report on ME (pdf - version 2011)
6. Eleanor Stein

Clinical Guidelines for Psychiatrists (pdf)

7. William Clifford The Ethics of Belief
8. Malcolm Hooper Magical Medicine (pdf)
Maarten Maartensz
Resources about ME/CFS
(more resources, by many)

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