Sunday, January 29, 2012

In the Furnace

A story in the New York Times reports on rifts appearing in the coalition opposing my favorite candidate, Vladimir Putin. Liberals look around at rallies and discover all kinds of people they don’t like, thus ardent nationalists and those who want a Russia for Russians, a designation that apparently excludes some ethnic minorities, among the non-Slavic migrant workers. Earlier stories report on violence—including a beheading—attributed to splinter nationalists.  The thought that came was: “We don’t live long enough to get wise, and by the time we do, we stumble about, and putting on socks is a labor.” A second thought was that until people emerge from the animal state, where tribalism is normal, they’re quite able to see “the other” as something to push away and even to kill—and feel righteous about it! The third thought? Hell and damnation. It keeps happening, over and over again. Nothing’s ever learned. The fourth was, Du calme! This realm, this earth, this life is a reverberatory furnace and not an end in itself. And by the time you realize that, you’re close to metal and about to be poured.

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