January 22, 2009

Stretch and a yawn.

Like most everyone; I like to use the new year to take stock of my life and assess the the various paths available to me in the days, weeks and months ahead. I'd like to say that is what I have been doing for the past three weeks but the truth is I have just been goofing off and watching a whole lot of tv and movies on my new computer and if anyone knows of any good sites that provide links to free movies and tv, that info will be much appreciated.

I am not amazed at the unbelievable hoopla that surrounded the inauguration of the president. I also find it difficult to say anything negative about the new regime without sounding like a party pooper. All recent world events and the inevitable debate and discussion of them has left me somewhat exhausted and frustrade at my inability to stay detached, logical and articulate about my thoughts and opinions. That is precisely why I spent most of my time watching HEROES and Scrubs, the 4400, Gran Torino, the Clone Wars and a slew of others. Are you still a couch potato if you are lolling around in a swivel chair instead of the family sofa?

I listened very carefully to what President Obama said in his inagural speech. His eloquence and timing is a wonderful break from the tedium and inanity of the past He was quite adept at admonishing the previous administration as well as the people and corporations of America without creating embarassement and showed true leadership with a calm and resolute demeanor. Yet I wonder if he has a plan to return a sense of civic duty to the republic. His massive plan of government intervention, economic, educational and ecological reform does not seem to contain provisions for the simple idea that you cannot continue to, pardon the expression, shit in your own backyard.
If America is expecting the government to make their businesses profitable; neighborhoods secure and drug free; schools safe and surrounded in an aura of education instead a miasma of confusion, if we believe that it will be the govt. that maintains the purity of our air and the protection of our wildlife lands and resources then we are surely setting ourselves up for a very large dissapointment.
Many Americans that I talk to often refer to their 'rights'. The right to bear arms and the right to arm bears. The right to effective, low cost medical care, safe drinking water and a good 10 cent cigar. While many talk of rights few words are spent on responsibility. I am not referring to finger pointing and the assignment of blame for all of your woes and sorrows. It was nice to hear the new president state:

For as much as government can do and must do, it is ultimately the
faith and determination of the American people upon which this nation relies. It
is the kindness to take in a stranger when the levees break, the selflessness of
workers who would rather cut their hours than see a friend lose their job which
sees us through our darkest hours. It is the firefighter's courage to storm a
stairway filled with smoke, but also a parent's willingness to nurture a child,
that finally decides our fate.
Our challenges may be new. The instruments
with which we meet them may be new. But those values upon which our success
depends -- hard work and honesty, courage and fair play, tolerance and
curiosity, loyalty and patriotism -- these things are old. These things are
true. They have been the quiet force of progress throughout our history. What is
demanded then is a return to these truths. What is required of us now is a new
era of responsibility -- a recognition, on the part of every American, that we
have duties to ourselves, our nation and the world; duties that we do not
grudgingly accept but rather seize gladly, firm in the knowledge that there is
nothing so satisfying to the spirit, so defining of our character, than giving
our all to a difficult task.

This is the price and the promise of citizensh

The world is watching and waiting. I sure hope he's not all talk.


citizen of the world said...

Oh come on, admit it - secretly, you're falling for him.

Grant said...

As I age I find myself more concerned about the greater good than my personal rights, as long as individuals are not trampled. Just don't infringe upon my right to J-bunnies and I'm good.

lime said...

it was that very portion of the speech that did it to me. that was when i felt the most inspiration.

and yes, it was refreshing to hear the leader of our country able to express himself articulately.

lime said...

btw...did you get the interview questions i sent?

jGrrl said...

I have been told that its not my concern since I'm a Canadian but I have to disagree and I think you understand why. Everything the US does will affect Canada in immeasurable ways, it always has.

I doubt that he can do even a third of the stuff that everyone expects of him, hell, he'll likely only do half of what he says he'll do even, but as of right now - he's already done more than most US politicians have done in decades.

He has inspired millions to do something they haven't bothered with before - try.

To me, that's one hell of an accomplishment and its damn nice to hear and see.

I'd even steal a quote from another dreamer that the people seemed to adore...

"Ask not what your country can do for you.." I think you know the rest ;-) have a great day <3

Megan said...

I gave up on Heroes a while ago. Should I go back? What's your advice?

NYD said...

Citizen~ I wil admit the man has style , but I am a little too old and salty to be convinced that easily. We shall see if the man's actions meet his convictions.

Grant~ I believe that the greater good and ones personal right to pursue happiness and masturbatory bliss are neither in conflict nor incompatible in a healthy well balanced society. That means we must exterminate the fundies!

Lime~ We are of a mind Lime, my dear. It surprised me that I am not so calloused that I did not respond to words well phrased and a message much needed.

Yes I recieved your interview and I will do my best to make my answers worthy of the questions

JGrrrl~ We are a world intertwined and responsible for each other. It's my hope that others will come to realize this as well.

Yeah. JFK had the right idea- especially about bonking.

Megan~ When it comes to my milk tongue I live in a desert. I would watch re-runs of the Waltons if they were available, but yes I think Heroes is a fine way to vegetate for 40 minutes.

The Grunt said...

Here's to hoping that the people do their part, because that's what really effects change.

Beth said...

I like the way you think - not cynical but realistic and hopeful.

(And no, you are not a couch potato - you're a chair spud...)

Kurt said...

Yes, it's refreshing to have a prez who speaks English. But I'll wait to see what he actually does before I cream my jeans.

puerileuwaite said...

I thought Obama's speech is right on. American's DO need to be more responsible for their own behavior and realize we are all connected. Except for me. It's too much effort.

moi said...

Man's got the benefit of my doubt. Let's see what he can do.

In other news: I heartily recommend all three seasons of Deadwood. It's what's been keeping my ass on the sofa.

Glad to see you drifting around the blobs again.

TROLL said...

I hope he IS all talk.

whimsical brainpan said...

So far there seems to be some action behind those words. In Obama's first few days he has already undone much of what Bush managed to do.

Try this link if you haven't already:


Mayden' s Voyage said...

I've not been able to line up my thoughts to express how I feel about the President, but you said what's in my heart.

It seems to me there are pockets of the American population who still subscribe to personal responsibility- but unfortunately there are several generations of people who have a welfare mentality in all aspects of their lives- from education, to housing, to healthcare, to transportation- and even about food. I heard one woman say on TV- when Obama won the nomination, "He's going to make sure there is gas in my car, and a roof over my head, and food in my fridge!" (or something like that)- and I paused and wondered why an able bodied woman expects the leader of our nation to tend to affairs she is capable of handling herself.

Here's a stimulus package/idea that would change the "give me" American mentality- send every Senator, AND 18 yr old man in the US to Soweto SA for part of a year to work in the townships and see what real poverty is- and an utter inability to escape it. Or to rural parts of communist China. Let our women, upon turning 18, spend 10 hours a week working in an Army hospital, a neo-natal unit, a soup kitchen, or go abroad like the men.
I fully intend for my kids to a 3rd world nation on a mission trip- or a peace corp program to give them a taste of the real world. I only regret I didn't have those experiences until I was in my 30's.
But better late than never.

I am sorry I hijacked your blog :)

Anonymous said...

I'm glad to see you've returned and eager to read all that has been building up. first, I've got to tell you of the Surf the web site that will give you most of television and film access. Second, I liked the idea that you've written out exactly what Obama said, since I did not watch the swearing in and not really interested in what he has to say, more of what he's going to do. Action, as my Mom use to say is louder that the words stated. so now America and the world will see if he is the man of his words, or are the words so easily said that they mean nothing.

My best to all


K9 said...

well -good to see you got off the couch and wrote. cause i liked what you wrote. i chose to go the other way, i am on a television ban. i listen to lots of free podcasts i enjoyed the history of rome very much. its very instructive. and timely - thinking about eloquence ... does not always turn out well for the people ...a charismatic leader who talks a great talk.

this lover of the little people's first executive act was to release taxpayer funds to finance abortions in third world countries. i expect the usual beat down for saying this but it amazes me that there is such support to rid this world of the least of us - those very people we say we care about and yet allow genocide without lifting a finger, and now another one which we finance under the guise of a womans right.

and simultaneously plan to release men from gitmo whos rights obama cares so much for who will return to a 7th century life where they can hack off a womans head or throw acid in her face because shes out in the daytime in the wrong attire or looked at somebody or whatever.

my PROBLEM are people who make choices that look and sound good -reflect back to them their magnanimous benevolence all the while having very little to do with the real outcomes.

but i dont want to be a party pooper either. no one wants a rottweiller at the unicorn and rainbow festival.

leelee said...

I echo what Cora has written and am glad you posted that particular excerpt from President Obama's (I Like saying that) speech.

Personal responsibility is the key here. Folks that are calling Obama "Messiah" and the like are truly missing his point.

This is MY (yours, mine and our) country) We should only look to Govt to "assist" us and provide a strong framework for us all to be able to have the abaility to suceed. The work is really up to us.

I'm positive about the idea of "change". A change we must all take part in, not just our government.


PS: welcome back. oh and most of the major networks show full episodes on the computer. also..if you join NETFLIX, there are tons of movies you can watch instantly...not free though.

The Java Junkie said...

I remain hopeful.

NYD said...

To one and all. I couldn't ask for a beter bunch of bloggers to comment on my posts. I love the variety and erudition with wich you respond to my post. I apologise for not responding to you individually, but I was away with the family (whew!) and have only just returned in time to write my next post. I hope you enjoy those thoughts as well.


Anonymous said...

I've got to make a correction to the site I've referred to you. It isn't surf the web, but Surfthechannel.com. please check it out. will be sending more site information as soon as my daughter sends them to me.

good luck