Mostly Harmless? Not So Much

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~ ITEM: Where the Hell Are the Guns?: A Soldier’s View of the Anxious Years, 1939-44

~ ITEM: The Guns of Normandy: A Soldier’s Eye View, France 1944

~ ITEM: The Guns of Victory: A Soldier’s Eve View, Belgium, Holland, and Germany, 1944-45

~ AUTHOR George Blackburn was one of Canada’s finest soldier-journalists. His trilogy about serving in WW2 Canadian artillery reads like a
movie, and grips you in the gut at every point.

In discussing the horrible Canadian trudge to liberate the Netherlands, Blackburn mentions two items which I still think apply to Canadians today.

First, the report from a captured German soldier, who said of the Canadians that they just kept coming, a relentless marching wall of mud & green, no matter what was thrown at them. Get er done. Embrace the suck.

canadian-infantry

Alex Colville’s “Canadian Infantry Near Nijmegen, Holland.” , Via

The other notable was an observation from the Canadian side. When facing British or American troops, the feared and fanatical SS always fought until virtually the last man. However, following the mass-murder of captured Canadian troops by the SS, those German units knew that the Canadians would show no mercy.

Thus, when the toughest, best-equipped, most fanatical uber-soldiers of World War Two knew the Canadians were facing them? They ran away, or surrendered en masse.

Oh, Canada

Or, yesterday, when despite not knowing if there were 2 or 3 or 4 other shooters, and that they themselves might die, Canadian civilians, cops, and military leapt in to do CPR an our fallen soldier, reservist Cpl. Frank Cirillo.

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Or, our Parliament’s Sergeant at Arms Kevin Vickers, who led the charge inside the Capitol buildings, and shot the Islamic terrorist. Given a very little opportunity, many politicians and staffers might well have died yesterday. Not on his watch, nor that of the RCMP, police, and other emergency responders, who  ran towards the gunfire, not away.

Sergeant at Arms Kevin Vickers

Sergeant at Arms Kevin Vickers

Boast? Nah, Just Do.

That’s who we are, though we don’t talk about it.

That’s what we can do, though we may not be happy about it.

Don’t try to scare us, because most of us will stand up and defy you.

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That’s why– even with his many many flaws– today Prime Minister Harper is speaking for the authentic heart of us, against the panderers, fascism-supporting pacifists, would-be Jihadists, muddled thinkers and multicultural cowards who are part of our country.

As you were, and about your business then– it’s only an international war of Jihad against civilization. We’ve fought bastards like this before. Whether we win, or go down fighting, the bastards will not forget what happened when they tried to sucker-punch the wrong calm-looking mild-mannered Canucki beaver. ~

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Get Preparated!

emergency prepare

– TEH BINKS IS not a prepper, nor prepped for any emergency past about a week. Like most of us, I have a couple of weeks worth of food here and there, a few candles (power black-out), a wood-stove (even though the genius NS government is pushing heat pumps instead, which work *so* well without power), a plethora of flashlights, a BBQ (powerless cooking), and a bottled water thingy (2-3 bottles if a big storm is a-coming). Worse comes to worse, there is water in the water heater; some tools & weapons around the house, couple of wind-up radios.. but nothing like, say, a one month extended emergency might require.

Truth is, in two generations we have mostly gone from the self-sufficiency of gardening, small-farming, canning, sewing, knitting, bottling, hunting, home-baking people… into fast-food insta-meal somebody has to look after me, just-in-time, not just in case people (and that includes our food-stores, pharmacies, and hospitals). Just-In-Time is cheaper, less storage costs.

Food: It Comes From The Fridge!

Food: It Comes From.. The Fridge!

Why, Back In MY Day

I remember working as a bag-boy & stock boy at a supermarket in 1979. Built under the story was a huge stock-filled warehouse of products. Now, in most supermarkets, there is no such warehouse. Most have 3 days of food. Similar efficiencies abound in pharmacies & hospitals– all presume that the supply-chain will always function, to bring new drugs of medical supplies, no matter what.

Because when you need insulin or your heart-meds or antibiotics, a week or two shouldn`t be a problem, right? Someone will bring us food & water when our cupboards and supermarkets run out, no doubt.

Some Resources

Remember to take into consideration the sick, elderly, those needing prescriptions, and your pets. Also, how and with what you will defend yourself from intruders & looters, wild animals, or other problems. Remember any special items needed to prepare for any particular local risks: flood, earthquake, tornado, hurricane, volcano, epidemic, etc.

Learn up now; watch some basic YouTube videos. You don`t have to be a bunkerized prepper to be prepared.

If you do want to be (at least) power-outage & man-made or natural disaster resistant, here are some links to at least give you some starter-ideas.

http://www.getprepared.gc.ca/cnt/rsrcs/pblctns/yprprdnssgd/index-eng.aspx

http://totalprepare.ca/

http://www.ready.gov/build-a-kit

And no, I don`t get paid for mentioning any of these links. –

– Teh Binks

bare-shelves

Whoa, Nelly!

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~ SO HOW FAST are you going? I’m sitting in front of the computer, you say.

So you’re not in motion, then?

Not that I know of, you reply.

Wrong. Your perceptions don’t reveal all of reality.

Let’s See…

The earth is spinning = 1,000 miles per hour.

The Earth is moving in orbit around the sun = 18.5 miles/sec, or about another 66,600 miles per hour.

The sun itself is also moving.

That’s an added 450,000 mph as the Sun orbits our Milky Way Galaxy. And the Galaxy itself is moving about 1, 300, 000 million miles per hour miles per hour.

So: as you sit where you are, you are moving– in absolute terms– about 1,716,700 miles an hour. Super-super-supersonic.

which is 28,611.7 miles a minute.

or, 476.9 miles a second.

Not So Perceptive?

Did you even notice?

Your perceptions don’t reveal all of reality. Not physically, or spiritually, either. Think about it.

http://www.astrosociety.org/edu/publications/tnl/71/howfast.html

~ Binks

Death-Worship

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- ITEM: 29-year-old with cancer plans to kill herself 2 days after her husband’s birthday

- ITEM: There is nothing brave about suicide, says Matt Walsh

- UPDATE ITEM: Why This Woman With Terminal Cancer Is Begging Brittany Maynard to Reconsider; PLUSBrittany Maynard: The Vultures are circling

- THE BASIC MISTAKE– It’s not just about her.

She is– in effect– saying that anyone who has chronic illness, pain, or any sort of possibly fatal disease is really a loser. This dovetails in nicely with government rationing of health-dollars for old or sick or dying people.

What does she know, exactly? Don’t suffering and dying and losing control and needing others, and being needed and cared for teach something to us and our loved ones, and society?

Death & Taxes

The evidence is already in from nations which have espoused such evil as medical murder: it quickly becomes not your choice. And the calls for death to relieve discomfort or suffering or depression show up. The government, soon enough, may well tell you when you’ve live your tax-funded share of years. Oh goody.

There is good reason why Hippocrates and those who invented Western medicine made it a rule that no doctor should take life and death into their own hands. Such things are of the gods, and very serious and holy, and should not be fiddled with; the power of the healthy and strong over the sick and weak is too easily abused even to be considered.

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Saith Teh Binks

No, Miss Maynard. I have been variously ill for 30 years. I have read and pondered and thought on suffering, evil, death, and God for a similar length of time. And, as with many who have been ill, what you suggest– self-murder– has come to whisper sweet nothings in my ears. There is no easy exit.

I have also tried to love God & neighbour, and redeem the time, for the days are evil, and to remember that as God made me from dust, to dust I shall return.. and yet, by grace, I shall arise even unto a new heaven and a new earth– a new body! where there shall be no more tears, or suffering, or dying, for the former things are passed away. I do not think God will bless you for having played god with yourself.

I am proudly not dead yet. But that is not my business– for

WHETHER we live, we live unto the Lord; or whether we die, we die unto the Lord: whether we live therefore or die, we are the Lord’s. For to this end Christ died, and lived again, that he might be Lord of both the dead and the living.

Romans 14. 8, 9.

Dear Miss Maynard– not that way.. His way. Live until you die, into the everlasting arms.

 Binks

thewayofthecross

Use It Like It’s Meanted, Dangit!

links

~ THE INTERTUBES have been with us since the mid-90s, and now– for many Westerners, it’s hard to imagine life without it.

Still, many otherwise decent and clever people on FaceBook and blogs and websites make the classic mistake of forgetting what the internet, at bottom, really IS.

Links.

phones

That’s it. Linking from one page or portal to other sources of information, news, kitty pictures, or why Peter Jackson and George RR Martin are in a dead heat for exploitative money-making. Whatevs.

So, if you mention on your blog-post or FaceBook that old Great-Uncle so-an-so served in such and such a unit, in the battle of whozits, it behooves you to, say, link to his unit or service record, a YouTube video about the battle, a picture of a piece of schrapnel from the great-avuncular arse which he passed on to you, a link to a museum where you donated said bit of arse-schrapnel, so all might enjoy it, and so on.

mark-vanderveer-shrapnel

The other day on FaceBook, some people were gushing over some lovely church music.

Thud.

No links to YouTube, and just like people’s names, you can regale me with Opus numbers and Köchel listings, and I just won’t click until I hear it.

LINKS, people!* ~

* Please to note that I have used a significant number of actual links in this posting on my blog about links, to further illustrate my point.

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Bibliophiles, Bewares

Binky's Personal Library, wing A through D.

Binky’s Personal Library, wing A through D.

~ ITEM: Amazon: The Wal-Mart of the Internet

~ ITEM: Why Amazon Went Big Brother

~ SURE, IT’S handier & fast. But Kindle or other formats of e-book have some real and inherent problems.

In the world of books, Amazon and Google are both bossy giga-giants. A little while back, my Kindle for PC (I have about 80 books on it, most of them free or on sale) would not let me read something I was currently half-way through, without that I re-downloaded it again. You know, because bullies like to rub people’s noses in it, and tell people what to do.

Think that’s bad? It gets much worse:

In July 2009, The New York Times reported that amazon.com deleted all customer copies of certain books published in violation of US copyright laws by MobileReference, including the books Nineteen Eighty-Four and Animal Farm from users’ Kindles. This action was taken with neither prior notification nor specific permission of individual users. Customers did receive a refund of the purchase price and, later, an offer of an Amazon gift certificate or a check for $30. 

Removed. Without permission or notification. Just– gone. A brave new world of books: beyond ironic that it was Orwell’s books in this case.

tablet-big-brother

UnKindled

I was underwhelmed. So much for the ‘bold new age’ of freedom which the web and related book-technology were supposed to bring us. Even more, I’m concluding that books as a teaching/ entertaining technology are well suited to how humans need to pay attention to things– without the million-and-one distractions of a computer or hand-held, as if we were all in the midst of a circus, and not trying to attend to our reading.

Now, I understand that the authors and publishers ‘own’ the words, but still, I’ve yet to see any author, publisher, or store do this to a physical book in my home, or at the local liberry. Books are a more permanent, less tamperable record of whatever an author was on about.

Barring literal physical destruction, or the accidents of history, books abide. That’s a blessing.

DisappearingProse

Ether In The Wind

Digital books are inherently less permanent, no matter e-clouds and suchlike, which all presume your e-reader or computer is available & working, has power, that the internets are working, and that some intellectual tyrant hasn’t decided to delete or “good-think” e-books on currently unpopular topics. FaceBook regularly blocks and deletes things which their drones disapprove of, or someone complains about. Why not the same treatment applied to books?

Not feminist enough? Not sufficiently fawning towards a regime? Not pro-homosexual enough? Too old fashioned, or religious, or complicated, or rabble-rousing, or…. you get the idea. Of course, burning books just looks bad.. now, with a few clicks, the ever-changing notions of the moment will be found in all books permitted to exist– yet no longer allowed to say what their authors meant them to say. Never mind the capacity of Amazon to report your reading habits to the authorities. ‘Just trust us’ is the mantra of tyrants.

Kindle? Nah. I’m going back to buying serious books I wish to own in the dead-tree format, where the words won’t blow away, and where I don’t have to ask nicely for some giant company to let me read something I already paid for.

And no, I won’t be buying via Amazon.com.

~ Binks

Confirmed Biblioholic & Book Geek

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Wee Wallace Of Doom

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Wee Wallace Of Doom, Planning To Annex Something, And Mark It With His Pee

~ FOR WHATEVER good reasons God gave us dogs, I rejoice– daily– that God gave me Wee Wallace.

We’d been down to Missouri for a month visiting Binks-Dad, who at that point had 4 (large) dogs– I was doomed. My twin Binklings fell in love with pooches, and they finagled and asked nicely and begged and got parents onside, and only a couple of weeks after we returned to New Scotland, there he was.

He and his brother lived in a glass booth at the puppy-store for over 4 months. His brother (white-furred) was too caffeinated, and would not stop jumping… but the black-furred puppy at the back of the cage was looking at the world, checking things out. Bingo. His temperament seemed to suit ours.

Wallace knew literally nothing of life save the little world of the pet-store. Grass, sky, walking on a leash, other critters, different kinds of food, sleeping without his brother, where to poop? All new.

We named him Wee Wallace, after Sir William Wallace, the Scottish hero of the Wars Of Independence. You know, cuz miniature poodles are tough like dat. I learned that not only are they low-allergenic, but they can be super-smart, and funny. Poodles are water-dogs, meant for scaring up and catching water fowl.

A Simple Life

His life is small, he has a couple of jobs (door-microwave-phone alert-mummy’s home), he is made happy with a daily walk followed by two mini-milkbones, and an occasional variety in the taste of his dog-food. If, whilst on his walk, he can dance for a couple of people, or sniff butts with some other neighbourhood dogs, all the while leaving or answering p-mails on trees, bushes, shrubs, and dog-likely sniffing spots, his joy is deep and honest. As someone said, dogs thank God simply by wholeheartedly enjoying the good things of this life. It’s true in his case.

Get Up And Walkies

Wee Wallace saved my life. Not bad for a little guy not 10 pounds soaking wet.

Chronic illness can keep you low and hidden and lying about, waiting for the next misery. With the daily doggy-needs for micturation and defecation, I was forced to be up and about. Daily walks ensued. Said walks got longer and more healthsome. I began to regain my slim and girlish figure. Some of the chronic pains faded a little to the background.

That’ll Do, Dog

The She-Binks is diligent in varying his small-dog Nutrience dry food month-by-month. Today, he was looking at me attentively, and so I looked at his dish and water-bowl. Leftovers of the old mix.

“Wally wants kibble?”

Blink (he blinks for yes, stares for no/ don’t understand).

“OK, new kibble! Oh boy!” Dog dances on his hind feet, in expectation.

New kibble ensues on the plate. Dog eagerly eats each piece on at a time, by taking them carefully off the plate, and eating it a foot away on the carpet.

A few moments later: “Wallace! is it good? Is it yummy?”

Wallace blinks, licks chops, and smiles, eyes aglow. Binky’s heart melts into marshmallow puddle.

Dog resumes his careful kibble-eating, one by one by one.

Sometimes, it’s the simple joy of knowing you’ve made another critter happy that warms the heart-cockles.

Good dog. ~

* Slightly edited, because influenza. And for those who are wondering why I’m not on about Obama Ebola Nekkid Actresses Reddit Twitter, it’s because the ordinary life of free people in free lands, enjoyed, is part of what we must fight, and live for. 

Wee Binks

calvin-hobbes-school

~ AND THEN it happened.

Grade 1. I had no idea WTF it was all about.

We sit in rows, while Mrs. Arm Wattle talked at us about things of little or no interest.

Wee Binks: “OK, I did that for 10 minutes, now can we go outside? Can I go home now? What is this all about? You want me to do what? I’m lonely, and scared, confused and bored, and none of this makes much sense. What? Back to the corner again?”

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It was in Grade 1 that I learned many things, not all of them intended.

~ That being repeatedly sent to stand in the corner made as much sense as whatever this whole ‘classroom’ thing was about.

~ That organized public education and my younger self did not get along at all.

~ That the horrors and bullying of the schoolyard were even worse.

~ That it was a long walk to the Principal’s Office.

~ That numbers were a language I could not easily grasp (it turns out Wee Binks actually had math dyslexia– Discalculia– but it had not been invented yet.. along with mild dyslexia).

~ That a close approximation of the desolation of hell is an empty Valentine’s day bag with no cards in it (Grade 2).

~ That no matter how badly you wanted to, you could not go home until another grinding day was done. Each day was like a month. Thus, Grade One took about 22 years, Binks-time.

~ By age six, I wished I were dead.

So forgive me if I recall “the First Day Of School” as a not-happy thing. ~

Binks

calvin6

Broken Clown

Robin-Williams.-006

~ ITEM: Love the comedian: hate the act that took him from us, by Hilary White

~ ITEM: Shaidle: Everything people are saying about Robin Williams is right— and wrong— at the same time

~ ITEM: Matt Walsh: “Robin Williams didn’t die from a disease, he died from his choice”

~ ITEM: Just Before He Died Robin Williams Sent a Terminal Cancer Patient This Heartfelt Video

~ ITEM: The Truth About Robin Williams, by Stefan Molyneux

~ ITEM: Please Let Robin Williams’ Depression Be His Real Legacy

~ ITEM: What Dreams May Come

What Dreams May Come Official Trailer

~ PONTIFICATING on Robin Williams’ suicide is presumptuous, predictable, and reveals more about us than about him. The fact that the manic comedian had developed Parkinson’s (which boosts emotions) may explain why his already painful life became too much.. brilliant and driven, lonely and painful, as Stefan Molyneaux explains, from his childhood on up.

Some people live life like a raw nerve; they feel ten times more, suffer ten times more, rejoice ten times more, and find life wearing and wearying. Robin Williams lived his life in the public eye, and we saw his inside-out life and it entertained us.

Robin-Williams-robin-williams-3674072-381-445

We Need The Eggs

Who wants to cure the jester? Or as the old joke has it, the husband asks the doctor about his wife, who thinks she’s a chicken. “so you want to cure here?’ asks the doctor. “No!” says the husband, “we need the eggs.” Make us laugh, comedy-monkey!

Of all the movies which reveal the skills, and inner life of Robin Williams, it’s 1998’s What Dreams May Come which shows the most. It starts out as an afterlifey happy shiney magical land– but as William’s character searches for his wife (who committed suicide) she’s nowhere to be found. All of a sudden the shiney happy vanishes, and we end up on a Dantean quest through horrors and hell to save the wife from her self-murder.

whatdreams

For me, it’s a classic case of a screenwriter whose talent exceeds the bounds of the story; or, of a spiritual universe which is much larger and deeper and brighter and darker than it first appears.

Word is that Robin Williams was nominally an Episcopalian (Anglican), and I have no idea what he made of that, or of his relationship with God. The sad thing for those in such spiritual need that squishy liberal Protestantism has nothing strong enough to comfort or save or hang onto. The empty & smug elitism of much of mainline denominationalism leaves you spiritually like someone on the Titanic after the boats have gone.

In The End

Genie,Free

Wrong. Terribly, terribly wrong.

I cannot say, with Disney or whomever “Genie, you’re free.” Suicide, like homicide, is about murder. It’s horrid and messy and cruel and leaves the victims angry with and grieving the same person. It’s a permanent solution to a temporary problem. 

Robin Williams now stands before God, his judge and Savior, as each of us shall, come death’s door. I do not know Mr. William’s spiritual state, nor if– with the last milliseconds of his life– he repented and wished to undo his doom. Let us, instead, look to our own souls, visit and help sick & depressed people (they are all around us, and I am one of them). ~

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What Rough Beasts

~ ITEM: THOUGHTS AFTER LAMBETH by Eliot, T.S.

~ ITEM: T. S. Eliot’s Christian Society: Still Relevant Today?

~ THE WISE SEE what is coming, what rough beast is slouching towards Bethlehem– they feel it in their bones; they read the signs of the times; Israel had her prophets– modernity has had a few great-hearted poets and writers, readers of the soul & the world, truth-tellers in the ever-dishonest times.

We are in the middle of a three-way collision: rational life-giving Christianity, irrational suicidal non-Christian Islam, and irrational suicidal non-Christian Secularism. To both irrationals, Christ is the great enemy. His claims are blasphemy. His followers are pure evil. The free civilization and free societies built in his name must be enslaved, one way, or the other.

T.S. Eliot, prophetical poet & essayist.

T.S. Eliot, prophetical poet & essayist.

“The World is trying the experiment of attempting to form a civilized but non-Christian mentality. The experiment will fail; but we must be very patient in awaiting its collapse; meanwhile redeeming the time: so that the Faith may be preserved alive through the dark ages before us; to renew and rebuild civilization, and save the World from suicide.”

―From T. S. Eliot’s essay “Thoughts after Lambeth.” [1931]

And from another gift from God to our insane times, comes this wisdom and warning about discerning good from evil:

“If only it were all so simple! If only there were evil people somewhere insidiously committing evil deeds, and it were necessary only to separate them from the rest of us and destroy them. But the line dividing good and evil cuts through the heart of every human being. And who is willing to destroy a piece of his own heart?”

― Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, The Gulag Archipelago 1918-1956

It would be lovely & convenient to exempt ourselves from this cataclysmic collision, but there is no neutrality in reality.  ~

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