The Random Comic Strip

The Random Comic Strip

Words to live by...

"How beautiful it is to do nothing, and to rest afterward."

[Spanish Proverb]

Ius luxuriae publice datum est

(The right to looseness has been officially given)

"Everyone carries a part of society on his shoulders," wrote Ludwig von Mises, "no one is relieved of his share of responsibility by others. And no one can find a safe way for himself if society is sweeping towards destruction. Therefore everyone, in his own interest, must thrust himself vigorously into the intellectual battle."

Apparently, the crossword puzzle that disappeared from the blog, came back.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

A Look Around Before the New Year

Here it is, only a couple of days after Christmas, and the world is a much better place. Let's see what's in the news for today...

Pakistan and India are threatening each other tacitly and, occasionally, in diplomatic terms. India is political turmoil over poor intelligence prior to the Mumbai attacks, Pakistan is in political turmoil because its "democracy" is falling apart from rising militancy and a weakening economy.

Russia is trying to re-establish itself as the power it once was when it was the Soviet Union. Unfortunately, the rapid and steep drop in oil prices has seriously undercut that effort. Still, it is there and we are reminded of the days of the Cold War.

Hamas groups have been shooting rockets into Israeli territory close to a week and Israel is now retaliating in force. After warning Hamas for several days now. With 155 dead in Gaza, according to Reuters, Hamas is threatening to unleash "Hell" on Israel. (The image of a mouse holding up a single finger as the elephant brings his foot down comes to mind.)

They claim they are all ready to die for their cause. Israel seems willing to help them along.

Guinea is under a military junta while it sorts itself out after the death of its long time leader. The usual events: leader dies, military coup by some mid-level officer (in this case, a captain), a bit of chaos, surrounding nations choosing up sides, various powers demanding an election where there is obviously no ability to run a clean one, and infighting between the coup members and the old military hierarchy.

Every country's economy is on the skids, it seems. The boom of the last ten or so years has faltered into a bust.

Global warming is now being blamed for record cold and freezing weather.

There are pirates plying their trade in the Indian Ocean.

These are just a small part of the global troubles.

Yet, we continue to hope, continue to see the possibilities. The Pope does. Each year at this time, he calls for peace, he prays for goodness to prevail. Each year, we get more war, more trouble, more evil. But the essence of man is hope and each year we stand with the Pope in saying now is the time for man to change his ways.

When has there been a better time?


Neo said...

Not on to "follow" the pope, I was babtised a catholic but have fallen, not so much from god and Jesus but more the "organized" religion. However I do read the bible (note the absence of capital b) and do find peace and guidance there. I do believe mankind needs to come to terms, accept differences and co-exist as we only have this one planet Earth. Lets be real though, if you read the bible as a history monitor was exists and always will to the end destruction of this planet. Now as time lines go, I can't read in the book of Revelations any mention to establish a set time of this, or if it will really come to fruition. I therefore live with the hope that mankind in its act of self-preservation will avoid this.
I did very much appreciate this post though, thank you

IB said...

We can kill each other and ourselves as quickly, or as slowly as we like. It matters not to mother-earth. She will survive.

Hopefully those who inherit whatever has been left after our time will have the wisdom we lack.


Argentum Vulgaris said...

It's a frightening prospect, just exactly will the children of our children inherit. I note that Neo spells bible the same way as I do... and IB, you are right mother-earth doesn't care a tinker's cuss, she will survive even if we are foolish enough to engineer our demise, which we seem to be somewhat adept at doing.

Douglas, an excellent post, showing not a glimmer of hope. Maybe we should start praying for pestilence, we seem only to be getting the opposite of what we pray for.

The prospects for the New year then are more doom and gloom; we remain habless.


redchair said...

Hi Douglas,
Didn’t Nostradamus predict Armageddon would blast down upon us in 2012? If that’s the case we can worry about it or enjoy the 3 years we have remaining. Obviously the latter is preferable- but not that easy to do.

We hope we can stop it. We hope we can change things. We hope.. And hope.

Blame it on Pandora. She let ‘hope’ out of the pythus remember?

Douglas said...

Neo - Even my enemies have wisdom to teach me from time to time.

IB - Maybe wisdom isn't what is needed, maybe just understanding what we are might do.

AV- Like most parasites, we'd probably have to destroy the host to kill ourselves off completely. And I don't think we can do that. Though our egos think we can.

Vikki - Pandora is an interesting myth. But she didn't let hope out, she kept it from escaping. An interesting paradox. I expect I might want to explore that myth one day.

generic Brand said...

Actually Vicki, Nostradamus was just repeating what the Mayans had already predicted millenia earlier. The Mayan calendar (the basis for the modern 365-day calender we use now) has the end of the world sometime around December 21, 2012

Douglas said...

GB - The Mayans were interesting, as were the Incas, and the Aztecs. And then there's the Anasazi... Seriously, knowing it's all going to end in 2012 makes me glad I started my SS early.

Alan said...

Sure it is all going to end in 2012, as supported by Nostradamus (that would be the FIRST prediction of his that believers have pointed out in advance of the happening), the Mayan calender, and a dozen other pieces of "evidence" according to the senstaionalist documentary I caught on TV.
of course I was tol;d the world was ending on May 5, of what, 2005? The planets would align and tear the Earth apart, even though their gravitational effect is less on the Earth than say, a sandwich.
Oh yeah, darn, it actually was going to end in 2000, or when that failed let's juggle the numbers and say 2001. (luckily the computers kept the correct dates and all!)
Believe what you want (Bible, Greek gods, Mayan calender) but I want you to know- it'll all be alright!

Sal said...

With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams,it is still a beautiful world.