“They saw their injured country's woe;
The flaming town, the wasted field;
Then rushed to meet the insulting foe;
They took the spear, - but left the shield.”
I'm watching old movies with Red Skelton an Esther Williams right now –– entertainment I first enjoyed when it was brand new –– 70-odd years ago!Red and Esther are still far more enlightening, and far more helpful in guiding us through the vicissitudes and outrageous indignities of life than all this dour, tedious, enervating intellectual batshit.I feel I owe you a great Debt of Gratitude, FJ for persuading me to become deeply ANtI-INTELLECTUAL in my old age.
Well, as a poet, I hope you're not completely anti-intellectual. Just anti-certain-forms of intellectualism. I remember reading the curious book "Anti-Intellectualism in American Life" and thinking it a rather odd book at the time. But since the failure of global capitalism becomes more and more apparent, it has become evident that a certain "type" of intellectualism is extremely dangerous, and that we should heed the Delphic oracle to "know yourself" so as to be less at the mercy of "others".
Amen to all that, Joe.I have been CALED an "intellectual," myself –– not that it's ever been ocnsidered a particularly flattering term ––, but I suppose it must be true IF by intellectual" they've meant someone who THINKS almost incessantly about the probable MEANING of Existence, WHY things are what they are, HOW we might hope to COPE creatively and effectively with the inevitable challenges Existence presents, and what the TRUE nature of Good and Evil might really be ––, then I suppose I must qualify.. The Powers made fun of George W. Bush –– who trned out to be one of our worst presidents –– a BIG disappointment, as was his fatjer before him ––, however the younger Bush was mocked and scorned for saying early in his first campaign that "CHRST" was the "philosopher" wh influenced him most. The "punditz" acted as though that were not a legitimate answer to a question obviously designed to catch "Dubya" off guard.Well, I beg to differ. It was one of the very few things Bush II ever said publicly that made real sense to me.Too bad, however, that Bush II ddn't really believe it, or he would have acted more wisely!
Despite being an ardent pragmatist I am not a practical man. I have always had to rely on others stronger, more patient, and more skilled than I to perform most of the necessary practical tasks that keep Civilization going. I AM an ARTIST –– and as such am passioonately concerned with the pursuit of a set of ideal aesthetics more than than anything else. I hope that is evident in the music I've performed and compsed , the poetry I've written, the way I'v structured my surroundings, and the way I treat others in "real" life.I've had a mad, uncontrollable desire to worship BEAUTY and to live accordingly. You must understand, of course, that by "BEAUTY" I do not mean mere superficial "prettiness." I find much beauty, for instance, inacts of genine self-sacrifice, and the embrace of great difficulties for the sake of establishing, protecting and defending IDEALS.
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