Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Marxist Critique of "Metamorphosis" By Franz Kafka


Marxist Critique of "Metamorphosis" By Franz Kafka

In the beginning of the story the character transforms into a bug of some kind. Mr. Kafka leaves the interpretation of what particular kind up to the reader. In doing so, I feel he leaves the door open for any interpretation, especially for the Marxist theory.
  1. The essential question I chose to address for this piece is what values are being subverted by the author. There are many capitalist values in this piece that are being put down by the author. 
  2. Considering the stereotype of traveling salesman. Especially in the time period this piece was written. It's almost as if the writer was trying to say the character had it coming to him. When I read the text, personally the type of bug that I see is a cockroach. Because of the tendancies of the salesmen to lie to sell. But also in saying that he had it coming. I also see the writer was trying to say that he had no control over it. Because he would have been forced to do underhanded things to make money. Because money is the God of our society.  And people will lie, cheat, and steal to get it. 
  3. As the story continues. Gregor (cockroach) becomes increasingly ashamed of his appearance. And shuns the light and attention. This corresponds to the light of truth shining down on the evil, corrupt roots of capitalist society. A society where rich get richer and the poor are becoming increasingly poor. The middle-class has been squeezed almost out of existence. And when the truth comes out about the evil underbelly of society. They will run for cover and try to hide but there will be no place to hide when the people 'wake up' and realize what has been done to them for so long. Just as Gregor did in the story. 
  4. Gregor dies in the end of the story after overhearing his family talking of asking him to leave of his own accord. Gregor decides to go to his room and die. As he was determined to rid his family of his presence. I see his family as the people. They came together and collectively decided that Gregor would "destroy them all" if he were to stay. This is exactly what will happen to our society if we the people do not collectively get together and tell the banks, politicians, and lobbyists that WE are taking our country back from YOU and YOUR interests. And just as Gregor's family wanted him to leave on "his own accord" we will ask this of them. But most likely, they will not go quietly.


Tuesday, May 15, 2012

William Blake "A Poison Tree" A Marxist Critique


In 1794 an English poet named William Blake wrote a collection of poems. One of the poems in the compilation was "A Poison Tree". My essential question that ties to the Marxist Literary Theory is, What Social Class Is The Writer?
  1. William Blake, in addition to being a poet, was also a dissenter who broke away from the Anglican Church. He also spoke openly in his poems his disdain for established religion and the establishment.  
  2. "A Poison Tree" was included in the collection "Songs of Innocence" in 1794. This work is regarded as being one of Blake's "hidden gems". My question is, what social class was he? Was he expressing his frustrations with the bourgeoisie? Or was he one of them, writing of the upper class suppression of the workers?
  3. The Gordon Riots of 1780 is where we can find our answer. William Blake accompanied protesters on a march on the parliament building. According to biographers, he was in the fore-front of the mob. These protests were sparked in response to elimination of penalties against the Roman Catholic Church. The protesters were made up of an unruly proletariat as described by researchers.

  4. With this information I can safely assume that the social class of William Blake was the working class. Blake seemed to be ahead of his time. 

Thursday, May 10, 2012

EH-102 Video assignment.

Lupe Fiasco-"Words I Never Said"



"Words I Never Said" is a 2011 song released by Lupe Fiasco. I chose this video for this assignment because the lyrics speak to my views on society at-large. Banks are corrupt, war is everywhere, and politicians seem completely out of touch with the people. "I think that all the silence is worse than all the violence" explains my view that we know this is happening but we won't collectively stand up and say "no more".

Monday, April 23, 2012

Final Assessment


Since the beginning of this semester I have worked very hard at getting my writing up to par. In the beginning I did not know how to effectively write and get my opinions out there. I feel like I have done a good job of progressing along in this field since the beginning of the semester, especially since the middle of the term. Since then, I feel my posts have been progressively better and more thought out. I also feel that my grammar has steadily improved over the course of the term. My 1st few posts were very rough and not worthy of being included on my portfolio. But I am very proud of how I have progressed through the course of the class.

The post I am most proud of is the “Georgia Guidestones” post. In this post I effectively brought all the information I had on the topic out. Also, I feel I did a good job of formulating my thoughts on the topic to what I think made a very good blog post.  Some of the things I have to continue to work on are developing my thesis. I have trouble sometimes because I get very adamant about a certain topic and ramble on and get on a tangent. When I do this, sometimes my words come out jumbled and disorganized. It also makes my post a bit harder to read because of the confusion this creates. I plan on continuing to work on this as I make the transition out of 101 and into 102. I know that with this transition comes hard work and the writing we will be expected to do in 102 will be much more in depth and all around more difficult than the 101 class. However, with this in mind, I am confident in my abilities to move on and continue to progress in an effective manner. 

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

King Of Meltdowns

"I'm on a drug, it's called Charlie Sheen." 
-Charlie Sheen
This visual assignment we were asked to find a picture of a celebrity of our choice and find a quote by them that goes with the picture. I chose Charlie Sheen because I always thought that he was funny and even when he was going through his meltdown he still made it funny. 

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Sunset

This week I decided to do the visual assignment on sunsets. We were asked to take a picture of a sunset and write an accompanying post. I took this picture over spring break in Panama City Beach, FL. I've always like sunset. There is something about that time of day that seems more peaceful than any other time of day. This time of day is always better at the beach. Where you can have a much better view of the sunset as compared to the view we have at home. I like this picture because I took it right before the sun went down. You can still see the top of the Sun poking up from the Gulf. Chilling on the balcony at sunset at the beach is also very relaxing. The waves crashing and the wind through the palm trees provide a nice soundtrack that fits in well with this part of the day. I do not enjoy the sunset back home as much as I do when I am on the coast. It's a much better view. I find it interesting at sunset how the sky changes all different shades of orange. The skyline at this time of day is always a sight to behold. 

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Juxtaposition














For the juxtaposition assignment we were asked to place an art picture and a movie clip together and find a deep connection with the two. I found the picture of Jesus arm wrestling the devil on Google images and the star wars clip is from YouTube. The connection I found was that in the Bible it says that God and Satan are fighting for the 'keys to the kingdom'. A struggle between light and dark as it were. In the movie saga Star Wars I find a striking resemblance to the biblical story of Good vs. Evil. In the clip above Yoda is fighting Emperor Palpatine. Yoda is called, the master, he is the highest ranking Jedi in the order. The Emperor is called many names, Darth Sideous, The Prince of Darkness, Dark Lord of the Sith. And in the clip they are literally fighting for the 'keys to the kingdom' in the senate chamber. I also found that if you look at the Star Wars saga as a whole, it's kind of like the book of Revelations when you think about it. When you look at it in Episode I Palpatine rose through the ranks posing as a great friend to the republic. He deceived his way to total control. In Revelations it says that the anti-Christ will be the 'Great Deceiver'. Then he orchestrated a Civil War within the Republic, using it to assume 'Emergency Powers'. By episode 3 he had assumed dictoral control. Than he established the tyrannical Galactic Empire but his reign only lasted for a 'short time'. The same is said in Revelations when it says that the devil will be allowed to rule the earth again, but only for a short time. Than in episode 7 Luke Skywalker saves the galaxy from the Empire, and ushers in a new age of peace and harmony in the Republic. The same is said in Revelations that when Jesus returns we will have 1000 years of peace on Earth. I could be reaching but it's just what I see. 










Tuesday, March 20, 2012

DS 106

I have chosen to pull from the visual section of DS106. I've always considered myself to be a visual person so this just fits right in with my learning style. In most of these visual blogs however there is no text it is just pictures. Some are funny. Some are telling. Most of the bloggers get there images from pinterest. Which is a very good source for copyright free images.

The first blog I came across in the visual section is called "Demotivate Yourself" The Man The Myth The Paul. He has done several blogs in which he analyzes pictures, creates his own, or edits pictures to make a point. His blogs are very interesting and worth a look. Some are even good for a quick laugh. I'm not really sure what to make of the DS 106 course. I don't know enough about it yet to say definitively whether or not I would want to take this course. If you judge the book by the cover though it looks very interesting and worth looking into. Here you can see his demotivational poster he created. Funny stuff.

Another blog that I found humerus was "fat cats make art better" GrotoGrotto. He takes several classical art pictures and adds fat cats to them. One example is The Scream by Edvard Munch. He takes this classic piece of art and sits a fat cat on top of the screamer. I'm a sucker for funny photos of cats so anytime someone adds fat cats to classical art it gets my attention. I found this picture particularly hilarious. Simply because this painting was intended to be serious but just by adding a cat to the equation it completely changed the painting. Here you can see this picture. Try not to laugh.


As I said in the 2nd paragraph of this post I don't know enough about this course yet to make a decision on whether or not I would want to take this. It looks very interesting. I did use to make demotivationals for my high school computer class. I haven't done this since however. One of the reasons I chose visuals is because I am a firm believer that a picture can tell a thousand words. I feel like a picture can tell you more about that moment than if someone was trying to explain what they saw. I'd much rather see a picture than to hear a story. 

*Blog below was done before this one. I forgot that this weeks blog was to be on DS 106. I will leave the other up and welcome comments for it even though it is not a class thing.*

Georgia Guidestones and It's Mystery

Sunday me and two friends from home took a road trip. We got in my car and hit the interstate with only one destination in mind. Elberton, GA and the Georgia Guidestones. We learned of this location through 2012 research and Brad Meltzer's Decoded on the History Channel. This modern stone megalithic structure was built  in 1980 on a remote, country-side hill in Georgia. It is sometimes referred to as America's Stonehenge. In this post I will do my best to inform readers on the history of this monument and the theories of what they might mean.
In 1979 a man came from parts unknown to the small, country town of Elberton, GA. Elberton is know by the locals as the "Granite Capitol of The World." This man came to the Elberton Granite Co. and said he wanted to build a monument based on the theme of conservation. The name he gave was R.C. Christian. It did not take long however for the towns people to realize however that this was not his real name but a pseudonym. When asked about this he refused to give his real name. And since the monuments cost half a million dollars to build and he payed up front in cash the granite co. was more than happy to take his money with no question. He did however shed a small amount of light on who financed this project. He stated that he represented a small group of Americans who sought the "Age of Reason". He also said that his order was "In the know" and they felt that the endtimes were upon us and he wanted the survivors to have set guidelines to go by and rebuild civilization. These stones have what many have coined as a "New 10 Commandments". The stones that they are carved into are 16 feet tall and way 24,000 pounds EACH. These commandments are written the worlds 8 most commonly used languages, English, Spanish, Russian, Swahili, Hindi, Arabic, Hebrew, and Chinese. There are also inscriptions on the capstone of Egyptian Hieroglyphs, Babylonian Cuneiform, Ancient Greek, and Sanskrit. Those four languages are dead languages and there are no translations to what these inscriptions say. But this monument is not just this. The 4 pillars point to true north, south, east, and west. There is also a horozontial slot in the middle stone that the Sun shines through perfectly at sunrise and sunset everyday of the year. There is a slit in the capstone that the Sun shines through perfectly at high noon everyday of the year. And there is also an upward looking hole in the middle stone that you may see the North Star at any point during the night. So this monument is not just guidestones; it is also a compass, a clock, and a telescope. The new commandments read:
1.) Maintain Humanity under 500,000,000 in perpetual balance with nature.
2.) Guide reproduction wisely, improving fitness and diversity
3.) Unite humanity with a living new language.
4.) Rule passion, faith, tradition, and all things with tempered reason.
5.) Protect people and nations with fair laws and just courts.
6.) Let all nations rule internally with resolving external disputes in an international court.
7.) Avoid petty laws and useless officials.
8.) Balance personal rights with social duties.
9.) Prize truth, beauty, love, seek harmony with the infinite.
10.) Be not a cancer on the Earth, leave room for nature, leave room for nature(the stone repeats itself)
When the monument was completed in 1980 "Mr. Christian" disappeared, and has not been seen in Elberton since.


Many have speculated on what these stones mean for us and why they were placed where they were. Some fear the monument, stating that it calls for mass genocide and calling for a new world order. To me, this argument holds no water. While the 1st calls for maintaining humanity under 500,000,000 it makes no call for violent genocide or a New World Order. We already are allowing nations to rule internally while externally solving disputes in a world court(the U.N.). While the other commandments call for love and harmony. I take Mr. Christians word for it when he says that after some cataclysmic event, apocalypse if you will, these guidestones will be a guide to an "Age of Reason". And our planet is vastly overpopulated at 6.7 billion. With this gross over population it makes sense that Mother Earth is going to cleanse her self one day. We already see can see this in history in Noah's flood. Christianity is not the only culture with a flood story, all other ancient cultures all around the world from the Ancient Maya to Islam have a story of a great deluge. And there is archaeological evidence to support the claim. In recent years they have found multiple man-made stone structures 50 to 100 feet below the ocean. Climate change has happened before as well, we see it in the Ice Age. When it comes climate change I am in the middle. It is happening and we have scientific data to prove this, but we as humans are not the major cause of this because, as we look through history we learn, that this has happened before and there is no reason that it wouldn't again. The human race has been a huge "cancer on the Earth" since the coming of the industrial revolution. We have chopped down rain forests, polluted the oceans and rivers, and spewed tons of toxic chemicals into the atmosphere. All in the name of "progress". We have left barely any room for nature.
For us to understand what has happened in our past to better understand what may happen in the future we must not go in with any pre-conceived notions. An open-mind and a willingness to question the norm is essential. We must also understand that as humans, yes we are the top species on the planet, but there are things that happen that we have no control over. We are not as powerful and amazing as we think we are. Nature will always win out. This is why I believe that the guidestones were placed. Whatever "Know" this group was "In" they had this built so when (not if) the world as we know it ends; we will have guidelines to go by. And "The Age of Reason" will begin.


Friday, March 16, 2012

The Road We've Traveled

*I don't know if I'm actually supposed to be posting this on this blog but it moved me so I thought I would share it. *
A powerful in-depth look at the decisions our President has made over his first 4 years. Interviews with the President, cabinet members, and former President Bill Clinton. A must watch for anyone planning to vote come November. Narrated by Tom Hanks. 

Thursday, March 15, 2012

The Madness Has Begun

It's March and the time has once again come for the most exciting time in College Basketball; March Madness. The tournament began Tuesday with the 'last four in' games and today marked the beginning of bracket play. Kentucky is the overall #1 seed and the overwhelming favorite to take the title. But there are 63 other teams that have plenty to say about that.

With all the talking heads and bracketology going on it can be hard to make sense of it all. Especially if you're like me and want to stay on top of everything from start to finish. Everyone on ESPN, CBS, and Fox Sports likes to think they have all the answers; and they'll tell you they do. For example, today Gonzaga and West Virginia played. Gonzaga was the higher seed but all the "experts" predicted a West Virginia win. With 10 minutes left to go the Zags are throttling WVU 59-34. Guess they might be a little pissed off. My point is; all those pundits who act like they know everything about college basketball, or any sport for that matter, actually don't know anymore than the regular, everyday fan. ESPN is becoming more and more like TMZ everyday and it's embarrassing. I never thought that sensationalism in media would reach the sports world. Unfortunately I've been proven wrong. For example, when the Penn State scandal broke that's all that they talked about. Not minimizing what happened but if people wanted to know the kind of details that ESPN was giving out they could have watched CNN or any of the actual news networks. And all they wanted to do was demonize Joe Paterno. The way they were talking someone ignorant of the situation would have thought Coach Paterno had done what Jerry Sandusky allegedly did(innocent till proven guilty). I watch ESPN because I want to hear about SPORTS news and highlights, not to hear about what happened at Jerry Sandusky's court date. Like I said if I wanted to know that I would have watched CNN. As soon as Joe Paterno died ESPN did a complete 180, they started talking about how great of a person he was and how he was a molder of men. It was despicable. They have no honor in their journalism anymore. Joe Paterno died of old age and lung cancer. But I believe that more than anything, he died of a broken heart. And ESPN is just as much to blame for that as the Penn State board of trustees and Jerry Sandusky.

As popular as the NCAA Tournament is the selection process is shrouded in mystery. It's almost the equivalent  of 33rd degree(highest rank you can get in the order) Free Masons meeting in secret deep within the confines of their headquarters. The selection committee gets together every year on selection Sunday and sets the brackets. No one knows whose on the committee or the mindset they have when setting up the brackets. The only thing we have to go on is the RPI ratings. RPI is a mathematical way the NCAA has came up with to rank basketball teams. This is the formula: RPI = (WP * 0.25) + (OWP * 0.50) + (OOWP * 0.25). WP means winning percentage. OWP is opponents winning percentage. OOWP is opponent's opponents winning percentage. See how confusing that can be? And every year the selection committee always snubs a number of mid-major team(small school ex. Jacksonville State) for power conference teams with a lower RPI rating than the mid-major school. It is becoming increasingly more like the BCS in college football where the little guys aren't on the same level in the committees eyes as the bigger schools. This year Marshall, Drexel, and Middle Tennessee State were denied a spot in the tournament in favor of Texas, Purdue, and West Virginia.The three mid-majors had higher RPI ratings than the 3 power conference teams. But still had to settle for a spot in the NIT or the '2nd best' tournament. In spite of the fact that in recent years mid-majors have had considerable success in the tournament. Last year 2 mid major schools made it to the final four( Virginia Commonwealth and Butler) and 1 of them made it to the national championship(Butler). There's a very good chance this year that another mid-major will advance to the final four. Murray State has the best chance; they have the best record in the 64 team field coming in at 30-1. In spite of that they only got a 6 seed. And there road to the final four is going to be very difficult, much harder than the golden child Kentucky's. The committee seems Hell bent to keep the mid-majors out of the final four. 


There are always going to be little guys and big guys in sports. I understand that. But when the little guys show time and time again they are just as good and sometimes better than the big boys and they are still being excluded; seems very strange to me. 

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Where Do We Come From?


The information I'm about to share with you may be controversial to some. If the Ancient Astronaut theories are true than this would change everything. I warn you that some of this information is, quite frankly, disturbing. But to fully be able to understand where we came from and what our purpose is here on Earth, we must be willing to look at all possibilities of creation and who or what started it all.

I have recently come across a very old book. Older than the Bible we know today. It is called the Kolbrin. This book has been carefully guarded by Celtic priests for centuries and is only now being released for the general public (Kolbrin Website). Its account for the creation of man is quite intriguing. It says that we are not created by God but by a race we understood at the time as Gods because the ancients had no concept of the technology that they possessed. It reads that the Gods came down from the heavens on "dragons" that spit fire and smoke. Now where they dragons in the biological sense? Or were the ancients trying to explain away what they saw because they had no concept of what a rocket was? I think the latter. I encourage anyone curious to read the Kolbrin's account of creation. It is very mind opening.

The Book of Enoch was found with the Dead Sea Scrolls. These scrolls were also written before the Bible. Enoch's parables tell of an ancient race of fallen "angels" called The Watchers. These watchers came to Earth (according to the book) to mate with the daughters of men. These watchers also schooled men on Astronomy, how to make better swords, and advanced combat training. Now would the God that we know from the Bible send his angels to Earth to mate with the daughters of men and teach man to kill with precision? My gut says no. Also the word angel has been misinterpreted through history. The word angel comes from the Greek word "Angelos" which means messenger. Not something divine. (Read The Book of Enoch Here.

There have been accounts of UFO sightings all throughout history. This is not a modern phenomena. There is an account from Nuremberg, Germany in 1561 of a great battle taking place in the sky above. Everyone in the town saw this. (Source) The ancient Maya and Egyptians, that coexisted on two different sides of the planet at the same time. Had remarkably close ideology, architectural prowess, and an advanced understanding of astronomy. Both have legends of Gods coming down from the Heaven on "Chariots of Fire" and these Gods schooled them on how to build  megalithic structures such as the pyramids. Why would two cultures on opposite ends of the World have almost parallel stories? When modern science tells us that these two cultures shouldn't have had any contact with each other. Is it coincidence or is it something more? 

The Mayan Calender says that world as we know it will end on December 21, 2012. I'm not going to start spewing doomsday theories; because I think that what the Mayans were trying to tell us was that something significant is going to happen on that day. Not necessarily the end of civilization. The book of the Jaguar Priests of the Ancient Maya states that on that date the Human Race will be transcended into the next phase of evolution. They call it the "Great Awakening". I'm not saying that I believe this but, The Mayan Calendar has correctly predicted correctly every eclipse and solar phenomena since its creation 3,000 years ago. How did ancient people come to possess this knowledge? Who helped them? It's a question that I think must be explored to be able to understand the history of our race. I think we have lost some knowledge of our history because no matter where you look; whether it is in the Kolbrin , the Sumerian Tablets, Holy Bible, Koran, Native American folklore, Aztec legends, ancient Egyptians, the Greeks, Hindu Sanskrit’s, Ancient China, or the Norse people. All stories of creation are almost parallel to each other. They all state that some being came down from the Heaven’s and created us in their image. Are we all expected to believe that all ancient cultures have the same creation story by coincidence?

I think that all humans have an innate desire to know where it is we come from and what our purpose is. It is what drove me to research this and write this blog. I'm not saying that I believe this and we all need to throw away everything we've been taught to believe. All I'm saying is that we have to be open to all possibilities of origin to really understand where we come from and where we're going. 

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

There Was A Time...

When Americans built things. We manufactured products that were the envy of the World. They were for the most part produced within our borders. Than in the 1980s Reagan took office and deregulated business which started an avalanche of sorts. American companies started to close down factories and move there manufacturing centers to 3rd world countries. And since then the income of the wealthiest 1% in this country has gone up 271% compared to the middle class worker income which has only rose 25%.(Income chart here) Adjust that for inflation and that is almost stagnant. We can't get back to where we were in this country if only 1% of the population is making money and the other 99% is just trying to stay afloat. What we need are stricter regulations on American Business, I would even go as far as to outlaw American companies from out sourcing there jobs. We need this because this country has developed a consumerist mentality. We do not produce near as much as we consume. This is no doubt having a huge effect on the deficit and until we correct this problem we cannot hope to pay off our debt. The only thing stopping this from happening is the corporations themselves. It works for them to pay  11 year old Vietnamese girls 25 cents an hour  in a sweatshop and work them 16 hour days. How else could there incomes have risen 271% since 1980. But what it's going to take to get us going again is shared sacrifice. That's what we had before 1980, we were all in this together. That's changed now.

If the plight of women working for nominal pay in sweatshops doesn't concern you, and there are those out there that don't care about it as long as they get there shoes. Here's another way of looking at it. During WWII we had a manufacturing base in this country. We had plenty of factories we could convert for the benefit of the war effort. Who is our biggest military threat today? China. Who do we owe the most money to? China. Who has the manufacturing base now? China. We've outsourced our liberty people. If China were to cash in the debt we owe they would bankrupt us and it still wouldn't pay everything we owe. If they declared war(and relations between us 2 have never been that warm since the Cold War) they would cut off trade. With them being the country we get the majority of our goods from, this could be disastrous. And we don't have the manufacturing base that we had in the 40s so where are we going to produce arms for the war effort? This concerns me and it should you also. This is another reason we have got to get our act together. If we don't the America we know today might not be here in 50 years.