CLASH MMA 17

Clash

OK, pretty unique evening Saturday night (April 9, 2016). Mason & Bacon decided to go to the Clash MMA 17 at the Ellen Eccles Ice arena in North Logan, UT. I’ve never attended such a thing in the past and thus had no idea what to expect. Twas an evening of surprises! The first was the size of the crowd. We arrived 20 minutes before start time and the parking lot was practically full. The next surprise was security (over the top in my ever unhumble opinion). They were patting people down and searching their packs. I wasn’t allowed in because of my Swiss Army tool (???). Back to the car to dispose of my weapon…

We return, are allowed in, but when we enter the stands, it turns out there is no handicapped accommodation whatsoever (I was minus a leg, a sense of balance, and was in my wheelchair). We end up seated at floor level, in the aisle through which people enter and exit the stands. I shall have to guard my precious Macbook Air with my life!

During the first segment of the event our view is mostly blocked but we are able to see some of what is going on. Security people materialize before me. No, it’s not me they’re after, thank goodness. Evidently they’re tracking a young lady who might have, of all the damnable things, alcohol… but maybe not.

Ok, security gone, first round is over and now a couple of nice looking young ladies are positioning themselves in my line of vision. If they’d take their shirts off and turn around, that’d be cool, but I rather suspect that’ll not happen. Ah, the fight’s on again. One big guy apparently banged the other’s head against one of the support beams of the cage. He’s back on his feet now. Holy smoke, I’m actually seeing some action! I must admit this is cooler when you can see it. Ah, new lady moves in to block my view. At least she has a nice ass. Round 3 coming up. One feller has a boring strategy. Grab the other guy, push him over backwards and then sit on him. Oh, fight’s over. hmm… Next time I’m gonna study up so I know what the hell the rules are ’n such…

OK next fight between deeieiidkals KKSOoeeeaaaaaa! and whoever. Pretty poor acoustics. This looks more interesting. Much better. They ended up on the floor, but there were some pretty impressive moves… Whoa! knockout! excellent fight! Groovy. That was more like it..

Next fight… eventually… reminds me of Mexican slasher derbies. A lot of time is wasted between matches. One of the sponsors is BLO BLO BLEEP!! A guy in the ring is talking about t-shirts… global blu blah t-shirt. bleed blah blah blah, t-shirt!

Girl fight coming up! Well hoopie guadaloopie this ought to be interesting.

Well… It WOULD be interesting, I suppose, if I could see it. Shit, it must be awesome, the crowd’s going completely abstract batshit crazy. Standing up, on their chairs. So it’s become a matter of looking at people’s backsides, listening to incomprehensible audio, and people screaming… I don’t see a damn thing. I’ve no idea what happened but GlaAABMLEEE BLAABLAAAHALLLAAA won. She’s talking, “bleebleem a boodllldi BLES BLAH BLAN and gooblesloboo” ‘er something like that.

Next we move on to title bouts. The crowd relaxes and sits down, thus I finally get to see some action! A title fight next. The girls are done fighting so everyone’s sitting down.

Holy shit, fight’s already over. I saw it and still don’t know what happened.

Next, a welter weight title fight: Nino Genoa 3/0 / Michael Garcia 5/1: Plainly these two are on a different level than what we’ve seen so far. They are both in very good physical condition (even though they’re not ladies), and appear to be significantly more skilled than what we’ve seen so far. Round 4 coming up. Fight’s over. I’m not sure what happened. Looked like Garcia kicked Genoa in the leg… Maybe that’s against the rules… I don’t know. Anyway, it’s over and Garcia is declared the winner.

Next is a professional bout between Miles Welp??? vs Devin Knight???

Fight’s over, one of ‘em whooped the shit out of the other of ‘em. Miles Welp??? got the other feller in a choke hold and he tapped out.

OK… All in all, this has been a well spent evening. I’ve learned a few important things: First, purchase VIP seating; 2- Don’t bring your Swiss army tool (nor whiskey flasks); 3- arrive early so I can score a seat as close to ringside as possible; 4- bring a better camera. In the mean time, study the sport so that I know what the hell is going on.

Alrighty then… Apparently, I’m a fan!

Weapon of A.S.S. Destruction

A.S.S. Destruction

I must preface this  with my intent, which is to promote what may be the most remarkable piece of literature regarding the relativity between politics and humanitarian values that I have ever read, “Weapon of A.S.S. Destruction,” by Alfonzo Rachel. A full painting will require some lead-in. So bear with me. I really will get to the point which goes far beyond religion, eventually.

One ever present aspect of human nature is the curiosity about our own eternal (or not) nature. Is there a God? Of course! (not)! Naturally I share this universal curiosity and have taken approaches ranging from absolute atheism all the way through the gamut to  the committed following of organized religion (Mormon). None of this seemed satisfactory, comforting, nor truly fulfilling. Thus none stuck.

Agnosticism is certainly the easiest route, being quite similar to the political belief referred to as, “independent.” It requires very little in the form of commitment and is the “faith” I have adhered to throughout most of my life.

Atheism can be logically compared to political anarchy, which is one of it’s lures. People are at least tempted to believe they are individually capable and responsible and that they don’t need to depend upon “fairy tales,” “magicians,” nor Gods. Most of us deny it, but there is an element of narcissism that naturally resides within us which makes this type of independence look appealing. This is one of the reasons I took a stab at atheism. I lost interest as my realization grew that atheism leaves us with true, non-self centered reason for nothing. I do like to think of myself as reasoned, yet I also confess to a propensity towards the dark side. It is largely because of my lingering fear of eternal damnation that certain individuals remain alive today whom I believed the world would be better off without.

The study of Christianity, particularly the pursuit made outside the reigns of any particular religious organization (Catholic, Protestant, Mormon etc.), the aspect of Christianity which claims to be the actual teaching of Jesus Christ (the red letters, as it were), ignoring the human manipulations of his doctrines, leads the student to some of the most sound and loving humanitarianism imaginable. Although I am far removed from the typical view society has as to what a Christian typically is, I am never the less sold on the fact that it presents us with a philosophy that guarantees such a broad range of freedom/responsibility empowering beliefs that no political philosophy can compare. Even if there actually were no Jesus Christ (that there was is historically provable), or if the man were nothing but a magnificently talented philosopher (which may be the case), the result of following his teachings leads to true freedom, the truest respect of humanity, AND an appreciation for our own existence, that no secular philosophy can approach.

It is easy to argue against torturing and burning witches, cutting the tongues out of “blasphemers,” the idea of multiple wives, or religious socialism. However none of these perversions can be traced directly to the words of Jesus. These were manipulations for personal gain made by humans holding up their own interpretations or even their own generation of words they attributed to Jesus. The ultimate core of true Christianity boils down to “My command is this: Love one another the way I have loved you.” The simple fact of the matter is if humanity actually followed this teaching alone, every one of the legal and political problems we face would fade back into the Hell holes from whence they came.

The flip side of this coin is the fact that humanity is distantly removed from the nature of Christ. Thus it is quite unlikely that we can be successful in imitating his behavior. Our best hope is to recognize it and hold it up as motivation for our higher intentions. This, beautifully, is the point of Christianity. It is a set of logical, reasonable, and purely humanitarian ground rules to strive for. Failure is certain but the attempt will naturally build good principle and strengthen morality in the heart and soul of the person who sincerely makes the attempt. Thus the failure becomes a success.

One of the greatest disappointments with atheism for me was the atheist arguments for morality. There is no doubt that atheists are perfectly capable of completely moral behavior, and atheists who do live morally, (there are many) can logically be seen as actually having a more personal form of morality than those who pursue moral behavior in order to earn a mansion in heaven, 70 virgins, 30 wives in heaven, eternal existence, or whatever payoff is being played/prayed for. However the ultimate question still remains. Why be honest? Why be fair? Why help the weak? The unfortunate answer which the atheist will employ volumes of words to present, boils down nicely and cleanly to one, “because.”

Now, down to the nitty gritty:

According to Plato, Socrates referred to democracy as the “politic of mediocrity.” Rachel’s book is a brilliantly written, shoot from the hip look at historically verifiable facts about the development of democracy in our American republic. He Illuminates beautifully all of its brilliant absurdity, and backs up Socrates’ observation made almost 2500 years ago with indubitable evidence. He ties it all together beautifully with the relativity between proper principle, morality, freedom, responsibility and Christianity. All of which are rapidly being lost in America.

Rachel begins with the “so called party switch,” where he illuminates the true roots of racism in America, revealing startling, verifiable truths about slavery, the Jim Crow laws, the Dred Scott decision, the KKK, the truest opposition to Martin Luther King, AND the truest roots of the growth of civil liberties in America.

From here Rachel moves on to one of the most coherent descriptions of the difference between liberalism and conservatism, which alone makes the book a masterpiece. He states quite plainly and simply, something I’ve been trying to relate in my writing for well over a decade.

He moves into the association between religious thinking and effective politic. “Facts have little effect on the opposition because everyone has an interest in confirming what they already believe,” the very foundation of my own philosophical interpretation of one of the core aspects of human nature, egoteneoism. He illuminates the difference between conserving the freedom to do for yourself, and the political hunger for voters’ dependency. The difference between voting for what’s popular and voting for what’s “right.” It is this portion of his book which will cause the most consternation for the liberal thinker, but careful consideration of its premise reveals a beautiful philosophical basis.

Next he attacks another liberal bogeyman, capitalism. By clearly describing what it is and the power that it implies, “capitalism is freedom of money.” The innate differences between capitalism, socialism, and fascism. He examines modern absurdities such as “minimum wage,” “unionization” (the stepping stone to communism), pulling into focus the “render unto Ceasar” statement, so often used to Biblically support taxation.

State run healthcare, abortion, Constitutional protection, homosexuality (including a very illustrative historical look at the real physical dangers which inspired the the anti-gay mentality which still exists. (Rachel presents a very logical case in justification for including homosexuals in the military) Immigration, back to racism “Democrats still have you on the plantation. They farm blacks for votes like ballot cattle.” Which brings to my mind a quote of L.B.J., “I’ll have those niggers voting democrat for the next 200 years.” Environmentalism, “Our government currently makes laws respecting the religious establishment of environmentalism” (back again to egoteneoism).

Rachel takes a look at libertarianism, which was somewhat uncomfortable to me since I have often referred to myself as libertarian. “A Libertarian is typically just a liberal that doesn’t have a love/hate relationship with capitalism and the free market.” He presents a case which is now a new bug under my saddle.

One of the most important points Rachel makes is in reference to the American media, who I see as the biggest enemy the American tradition of freedom/responsibility has ever faced. “People vote democratic, not because of principle, but because of feelings swayed by the media.” There is a rising surge of resistance to the media lies, based on the growing recognition that it is going on. Tis one of the most important aspects of Donald Trump’s popularity, his refusal to kowtow to the whims of the liberal American media.

Bottom line… buy this book, read it, buy copies for your friends, give it out as Valentines, donate copies to charity, slide copies under your liberal professor’s doors, read it to your children at bedtime. Thank you Alfonzo Rachel (http://www.pjtv.com/?cmd=mpg&mpid=84 ) for a true breath of fresh air and a rekindling of hope!

Trump?

President Trump

 

Yes, I think so.

Trump’s shot at the Republican presidential nomination was intriguing, right out of the gate. The initial reaction to it was skepticism. “What’s this rich son of a bitch up to?” A valid question indeed! What IS this rich son of a bitch up to? What is in this thing for him? A truly objective analysis of new philosophies or ideas is made quite difficult by one of the basic self-defense aspect of human nature, which is a drive to maintain ones currently chosen beliefs. Much of the job of selling, be it ideas or dishwashers is, as Tump plainly recognizes, playing to people fantasies. Your reality is in your head, not mine. And it is real.

For me at first, Trump’s strongest appeal was his disdain for the main stream propagandia. Which spouts propaganda which causes typical Republican politicians to tremble in their boots. Rather than bowing and scraping and apologizing when faced with media propagandizing. Trump actually makes fun of them. Gives them the bird as it were, AND he profits in popularity and media coverage as well. For me this turned intrigue into a very positive fascination. Donald Trump rules the media. But still the wonder remains, who is he and what is he really after?

He obviously knows how to harvest benefits from his enemy. Donald Trump is getting more coverage from the propagandistic main-stream media than even their glorious angel, Hillary Clinton. Far more coverage than any of the Republicans he’s competing with. This not only benefits Trump, it exemplifies the wisdom of the man. However it comes at a price. The media does not want Donald Trump to win. The GOP (republicrats) are scared to dribbling shudders by Donald Trump, so getting his message out there in an effective way requires a certain amount of posturing, which he accomplishes brilliantly. Boisterous, cutting, offensive self importance opens the gate and Donald Trump triumphantly marches into America’s television, car radio, iPhone, newspaper, magazines (even the most radically propagandistic, i.e. NYT) for FREE! He plays the media fiddle so magnificently that their attempt to sell the scare reveals instead not only his core message, but a level of strategy which may be Trump’s greatest asset.

So… who is he really? What actually is at the core of his motivation? What is this rich son of a bitch actually up to? You’re not going to get at the heart of it via the media. Their ultimate motivation is to see him lose, so there will be no detailed and accurate analysis of what is going on. Getting at the truth is up to you. Unfortunately the disease of laziness and knee jerkism has reached a point which places most Americans at the mercy of whim. Trump realizes this and plays to it, “I play to people’s fantasies. . .­­ It’s an innocent form of exaggeration, and a very effective form of promotion…Perception is reality,” but the truth is out there to be seen by anyone who has the drive to actually investigate. There is undeniable evidence is in Trump’s own background. If one steps back from the mainstream circus side show into history and the actual words of the man, who unlike our current pRESIDENT, actually is transparent. You can see his school records, his professional achievements, ANY aspect of his history is open for all to see.

At age 13 Trump began attending the New York Military Academy, where he played varsity football, soccer, and was captain of the varsity baseball team. “Honesty and straightforwardness was the rule of law” at the academy. It got ingrained in us that you don’t lie, cheat or steal, or tolerate those who do . . . You just say the way it is,” Ted Levine, roommate. “He was cut from a different cloth, and it was quite obvious. He was more aloof. More focused than we were . . . We were wondering what we wanted to do when we grow up. He was already there.” ~Ted Pollard.

What you don’t find in Trump’s history is drugs, drinking, crime, nor even indecision. Trump was and is, driven. A man of vast accomplishment who attacks challenges and does so successfully. He turns obstacles into stepping stones and wins.

What’s in his head? He’s written 15 books, most of them before showing any sign of political ambition, and the man can truly be seen in their pages. One of the most important of these books, relative to Trump’s political goals is, “Crippled America.” To anyone interested in gaining a true perspective on Trump’s motivations, here they are. READ! Pay attention, turn off your presuppositions and listen for truth. It comes through quite plainly if you take down the shields.

Bom Jesus da Mata My Ass

Written in reaction and as commentary towards “Death Without Weeping / Has poverty ravaged mother love in the shantytowns of Brazil?” by Nancy Scheper-Hughes, for a cultural anthropology class I’m taking…

I have a difficult time with this.  We live in a world where this type of thing need not be.  The wealth of the world is astounding and people still suffer indescribably from what we call poverty.  Coming, as I do, from a background of Christian “virtue”, it’s been stunning to realize that so much horror occurs in the name of “Jesus”. In this situation we hear of a midwife speaking, “just to dust the infant with baby powder and wait for it to die”, this sort of thinking justified as “cooperating with God’s plan.” It’s certainly hard to comprehend how anyone could see such a thing as being part of the “plan” of an all powerful deity. My own ethnocentrism temps me to explain it as the ignorance of a substandard civilization, but I see the same logic used right here in our own glorious, civilized, academic territory of wisdom where many see everything as directed by some unseen, inexplicable deity and all the misfortunes as being part of “his will” and the fault of our “unworthiness” of some sort. We see beliefs and behavior in another culture which are very similar to our own, and see it as horror, which many of us also see as “his will”.  The solution to such problems as this is indescribably simple, unfortunately the first requirement is logical concern against which, Gods, politics, power and money are vigilantly on guard. Bom Jesus de mata doesn’t mean “beneath the quiet” in my book..  But then, I’m just cooperating with God’s plan… ‘er somethin’.

Wednesday 9/28/11

Christianity

I’ve had a lifelong struggle with religion. Believer? Don’t believer? Yes today, no tomorrow, I don’t know on Wednesday. A religion I’d grown up surrounded by yet doubting soundly, eventually got its hooks in me. I think the fact that I’d grown up such a rebel, surrounded by family that didn’t believe this particular faith, ended up arming me with the fortitude I needed to shake the hook. I now see that faith as absolutely ridiculous, yet I know very intelligent people who believe it, absolutely.

Seems if we grant power to a God, ANYTHING is possible, yes? Even the illogical, yes? Even the impossible? ABSOLUTELY! You see, we have Satan here making the truth look bad, so the truth I recognize is under constant attack by a magical, demonic, entity of immense power, so naturally it’s hard for you to see the truth. Apparently God likes the controversy since he doesn’t step in to correct it. This is why we call it a “test”.

But why does the being of ultimate power, wisdom and understanding, who knows everything, sees the future, knows the end before the beginning, and has no limitations outside of following the laws he, himself created, need to test anything?

Well, he’s doing it for us. Can a God not simply “inject” us with the wisdom needed? Apparently not. Instead he/she/it creates us, places here, gives us an obscure, endlessly debatable, non-provable, illogical, difficult set of guidelines, which he places in the hands of human “messengers/profits/philosophers” to pass on to the rabble and himself, makes no appearance (except to Moses & Joseph Smith). And why? Well, that depends on which messenger/profit/philosopher/scientist/witchdoctor/hoodoo-guru you decide is correct and choose to believe.

Interestingly, I was visited yesterday by a good friend, Jesse, who is a “Christian”.  He doesn’t use the label “born-again” but I figure that’s where he stands. We’ve had many “religion” discussions in the past, some of which have been almost frightening, in terms of his attachment to reality. He uses a lot of words to say little…  hmm..  does this make me a hypocrite? Still I hold him in high regard. Yesterday he pointed out what he sees as a mistake made by many, the belief that there is a price for redemption.

This places me at the doorstep of a big mystery… Redemption from what? Did God create fallen beings? Was there some sort of pre-existence during which we fell? Is our own simple existence somehow faulty? Were we some sort of mistake? Whatever the answer is, it has to be God’s fault, which would make “redemption” God’s duty (by any typical ethical standard).

Jesse didn’t make this particular argument but the end result, the fact that there is no price for redemption, makes perfect sense in light of this logic. “Bacon, don’t look at it as making a trade. Redemption is done. What you’ve done in the past, and what you’ll do in the future is irrelevant.”

Not having a particularly firm belief in Christ’s actual existence, particularly the deity aspect, I’ve yet been magnificently impressed by his story.  The last days in particular. The suffering he endured at the hands of the very people he was suffering for. Even the aspect that I can comprehend weighed against his ability to end it at any time. Mercy amplified!

Although a great deal of the most horrible atrocities in history have been performed in his name, the example he set in the story is peerless mercy, nobility unequaled. Even if Christ is fantasy or fiction, following his example could only be a good. Christ performed miracles of mercy and didn’t require payment. There are no examples of “I’ll cure you if you pay your tithing, if you go to church, if you go on sinlessly…” Nope, what he said was, “freely ye received, freely give.” He did, however say, “your faith has healed you”. So the closest thing I see to a price is belief or faith and I don’t know if even that is attached to redemption. If we are indeed the products of a deity, belief seems a small price to pay for redemption.

Unfortunately, due to a lifetime of being surrounded by multitudinous misrepresentations, a great many conducted by the “religious”, my belief vault is empty. Nevertheless, I deeply respect the principles Christ represents and so I’ll go forward and believe as best I can, follow as nearly as possible the example of humanity set by Christ.

Come on now!  I see that sneer…

 ~Bacon