The horizon is not so far as we can see, but as far as we can imagine

To all a Merry Christmas

and peace on earth for all.

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30 Comments

  1. You too! May next year be better.

  2. S Brennan

    Merry Christmas to you and your family and best wishes for the upcoming year!

  3. S Brennan

    Worth a read on Christmas

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-12078056

  4. Merry Christmas, Ian.

  5. Lex

    Merry Christmas. The sun is beginning its return, rejoice.

  6. Elliott

    A Happy Chritsmas to you and yours,
    and truly, let there be peace on earth.

  7. Morocco Bama

    Especially to all the Hindus, Muslims, Jews and Buddhists.

    Just joking….Morocco Bama ducks as shoes are rifled his way

  8. Jeff W

    Merry Christmas, Ian, and everyone!

  9. Happy Holidays and enjoy your Christmas-industrial complex, suckers! 🙂

  10. Back atcha, Dude, and ditto to everyone else. For those who aren’t celebrating, have a good weekend.

  11. Formerly T-Bear

    Cindy Sheehan wrote an opinion at Al Jazeera that conveys the meaning of the season:

    http://english.aljazeera.net/indepth/opinion/2010/12/2010122314043803810.html

    paraphrasing “this is not the right way – Stop (going there)”.

    Season’s Good Will and Peace, make the New Year a fraction better any way you can.

  12. auntifashism

    May we all create the sustenance and strength within us to live, thrive and be a blessing to ourselves and others as we move through the coming year.

  13. Morocco Bama

    Whew, thank god that bullshit is over. Such a pretentious holiday (are there any that aren’t?). People say “Merry Christmas” unconsciously and reflexively because it’s what one should say at this time of year. What does that even mean, anyway? Merry Christmas? How about Merry Life? It matters not what “Christmas” is supposed to mean, anyway. What matters is what “Christmas” is…….a celebration of the spoils of Capitalism and Empire. So, I hope everyone enjoyed sharing in the spoils….it was brought to you on the backs, and with the blood, of the developing, and third, world.

  14. jcapan

    Wow, Morocco, you’ve got a belly full of jelly, eh?

  15. Morocco Bama is providing the perfect Scrooge foil, which we always need at Christmas!

    I don’t see how wishing others good will, or peace, or joy, or companionship, or love, at any time of year, is a bad thing. Not all of us buy into the consumer-crap culture. Some of us just love the smell of pine, the twinkling lights, the beauty of a well-crafted ornament, the red of a poinsettia, the bubbles of a good Prosecco, the sonorous voice of Dylan Thomas reading “A Child’s Christmas in Wales.”

    Getting together with cherished friends and giving thanks for our good fortune is always welcome. And if you try to alleviate the suffering of those less fortunate — in whatever ways you can — so much the better.

    Merry Christmas, Merry Life, good wishes to all, and courage for the battles of the coming year.

  16. Celsius 233

    The 21st was the winter solstice; now that’s a notable event signifying death and rebirth.
    May the coming seasons find you well.

  17. Formerly T-Bear

    @ 233ºC

    A book fictionally retelling the construction of Newgrange describes the passage “tomb” as being the oposite, a place of birth, the passage and final chamber the place of birth rather than a place of death. Still another book suggests it and other constructs were observatories for the planet Venus that had an extended period of observation, somewhat akin to the aztec 256(?) year cycle.
    “Uriel’s Machine, The Ancient Origins of Science” by Christopher Knight & Robert Lomas (ISBN 0-09-928182-1) contains thoughtful speculations of early astronomical observations (though maybe not provable, are thought provoking).

  18. Morocco Bama

    giving thanks for our good fortune

    Oh my, our “good fortune.” It was all just a matter of whimsical luck….this “good fortune?” Or was the “good fortune” the result of all our (we in the West) collective hard work? More appropriately, thanks should be given to the misfortune of those who made this farcical celebration possible…..like, say, the chinese factory workers, or the already dead, and all those who will die, in the Congo Gold War that’s been raging for the past decade, or more. Five million, or more, dead already and counting. So, with all the spirit and intent of those famous Bud Light Real Men of Genius commercials (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cjBjHP_NITI&feature=related) here’s to you all you soldiers of misfortune….without you, our fortune couldn’t be the Yang to your misfortunate Yin. By the way, keep up the good work….and, oh yeah, “Merry Christmas, Merry Life, good wishes to all, and courage for the battles of the coming year.”

    This song’s my favorite. I didn’t pen it, but I don’t want to give away the source. Let’s just say, a Dick wrote it.

    Afghani insurgents roasting on an open fire,
    Depleted Uranium nipping on your nose,
    Funerealtide wailings being sung by the bereaved,
    And teenagers dressed up like Rambos.

    Everybody knows a drone and a missile too,
    Help to keep the population slight.
    Tiny tots with their dads freshly slaughtered,
    Will find it hard to sleep tonight.

    They know that Santa’s on his way;
    He’s loaded lots of weapons & black ops on his sleigh.
    And every mother’s child is going to spy,
    To see if their neighbors wave their Stars & Stripes on high.

    And so I’m offering this simple phrase,
    To kids from one to ninety-two,
    Although its been said many times, many ways,
    A very Merry Christmas to you

  19. Lex

    I’m in…

    Gone away is Osama,
    Here to stay is the ummah.
    We’ll ban singin songs,
    But you can smoke a bong.
    Walkin in jihadi wonderland.

    In the meadow we can build a snowman,
    And pretend that he is Parson Brown.
    Once all of the AK’s they are loaded,
    We’ll hop about, shout and mow him down.
    Later on, we’ll conspire.
    In a cave, by the fire,
    To bring down in flames,
    Your precious house of trade,
    Walkin in jihadi wonderland.

    (From my eventual Christmas album which includes other chart topping hits like “White Bitches”.)

  20. Morocco Bama

    Lex, that surely is a knee slapper. I bet all the CIA grunts working double duty are playing that one as they prepare the payroll for the Taliban Insurgency….Christmas bonuses included. It’s good strategy to burn both ends of the proverbial Christmas Candle.

  21. Morocco Bama,

    Oh my, our “good fortune.” It was all just a matter of whimsical luck….this “good fortune?” Or was the “good fortune” the result of all our (we in the West) collective hard work?

    As I’ve acknowledged more times than I can count, I know that my good fortune is the result of dumb luck, not hard work — the accident of my birth, where, when, and how I was born, where, when, and how I grew up, where, when, and how I was given opportunities that most people in the world never experience. And yes, many of those people don’t experience said opportunities because of the criminal actions of my government. If your object is to teach me a lesson, you’re preaching to the choir. If it’s to chastise me for giving thanks, you’re barking up the wrong tree. Sorry for the mixed metaphors.

  22. Morocco Bama

    The presents just keep coming. You can’t write better satire than this. Everyone who will be waiting in line for Assange’s book raise their typing fingers.

    http://blogs.wsj.com/wsjam/2010/12/27/julian-assange-gets-book-deal-will-you-buy-his-memoir/tab/comments/

    So many books….so little time.

  23. S Brennan

    Sad day,

    I had to delete Confluence from my daily read, to much daily bile.

  24. anon2525

    A belated christmas present came today:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XInz4i6AV8M

    It’s Glenn Greenwald disrupting the media narrative about Assange as he takes on both the CNN interviewer and the former employee of bush&cheney. May it bring you much joy!

  25. But do they take Discover?

  26. Nice link, anon2525.

  27. Celsius 233

    Formerly T-Bear PERMALINK
    December 27, 2010
    @ 233ºC
    A book fictionally retelling the construction of Newgrange describes the passage “tomb” as being the oposite, a place of birth, the passage and final chamber the place of birth rather than a place of death.
    ===================================
    I think that’s pretty much in agreement with my understanding of the Winter Solstice. There must be a death of some kind for there to be a re-birth. Not being a Christian, but knowing some history; Christmas, as now practiced, looks pretty silly, IMO. Cheers.

  28. Lex

    Death and rebirth is perhaps the oldest of all religious motifs. I’ve never seen documentation of shamanic initiation that doesn’t involve death and rebirth. Osiris did it, Dionysus did it (even going so far as to be hung on a tree/cross long before Jesus), Krishna (blue, baby Krishna) did it a good 3,000 years before Jesus did it.

    The line between it being literal fact and spiritual is blurry, but there’s no doubt that Christianity takes the literal side to the point of silliness.

    I also think that we don’t give our ancient ancestors nearly enough credit. We have, i think, a tendency to mistake their metaphors for what they considered truth. But just looking at their astronomical ability says that they weren’t the deluded savages we like to think they were (which, imo, we do in order to make ourselves feel better). Not only do we have a handful of their engineering projects that we’d be hard pressed to recreate, we can see clearly that those projects were aligned with astronomical events with incredible accuracy. They were impressive people.

    We also have a very incomplete picture of what they were up to. Our evidence says that civilization started roughly 6,000 years ago. What we call their myths suggest a genesis much further back. What we do know is that at c. 10,000 B.C. the physical environment on Earth changed rapidly. Paleoclimate models suggest a rapid meltdown as the ice age waned and sea level rises that make our global warming predictions look like child’s play. We also know that humans tend to settle near water. So how much evidence would we have of human civilization if it were near the sea shore in 10,000 B.C.? Oddly, the fairly new field of undersea archeology is turning up some pretty impressive structures.

    As Rummy pointed out, absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.

  29. S Brennan

    Good Link anon2525!

  30. Morocco Bama

    Very good points, Lex. Let’s also not forget the Hunter-Gatherers, for lack of a better term. The majority of human existence on earth is pre-civilization and the theorists appear to have dismissed this substantial existence as “primitive” and “uncivilized,” whereas “Modern Man” is “advanced” and “civilized.” Apparently, the evidence for the lowly status of “pre-civilized” humans is the lack of evidence, so in order to place “Modern Man” on a lofty pedestal, “pre-civilized” humans must be conjectured as dim-witted brutes. How could it be any different, afterall?

    The irony is that “Modern Man” will leave plenty of evidence of its advanced civilization, but no one, or no thing, will be left to discover the toxic wasteland left in its wake.

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