Who Knew Modern Art Was Communist?

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I’ve been reading a book about abstract expressionism, and one part really made me laugh. I am a nerd, so I’m not sure if others will find this as amusing as I did, but I felt I would share anyhow.

The amusing part of the book was about how modern art was shackled to communism back in the early days, and the proof of that was summed up succinctly by a speech from Congressman George Dondero in 1949:

“As I have previously stated, art is considered a weapon of communism, and the Communist doctrinaire names the artist as a soldier of the revolution. It is a weapon in the hands of a soldier in the revolution against our form of government, and against any government or system other than communism….

The art of the isms, the weapon of the Russian Revolution, is the art which has been transplanted to America, and today, having infiltrated and saturated many of our art centers, threatens to overawe, override and overpower the fine art of our tradition and inheritance. So-called modern or contemporary art in our own beloved country contains all the isms of depravity, decadence, and destruction.

What are these isms that are the very foundation of so-called modern art? …. I call the roll of infamy without claim that my list is all-inclusive: dadaism, futurism, constructionism, suprematism, cubism, expressionism, surrealism, and abstractionism. All these isms are of foreign origin, and truly should have no place in American art.”

So apparently, all my favorite artforms are communist weapons lol. Who knew? Just label me a Russian agent I guess.

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Weekend Life Update: Depression, Meditation, Politics

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I am currently experiencing a real downturn mood-wise, but I’m going to try to write a life update post anyhow. I tried to write a blog post yesterday, but was simply to depressed to complete it. Today I’m just going to sum up a few things that went on this last week, so hopefully, I will get something done today.

  • This past Wednesday, my husband and I tried out a new meditation group (new to us anyhow). I haven’t meditated in months at least, and it felt good to “get back in the saddle” so to say. Even though I don’t find that meditation is all that great at relieving my anxiety and depression symptoms overall, it does at least give me some perspective and allow me to step back a bit when I am feeling my worst and realize that it will pass if I just wait it out. That awareness is definitely beneficial to keeping myself on this earth when part of me wants to check out.
  • My blog post about not being a social media doormat really became popular! I guess many others struggle with all the bullies and haters that tend to hang out on popular social media platforms. Glad to see I’m not alone in this experience.
  • Today I am taking my bike and aerobics trampoline to sell them to a used sports equipment store. I have had to face the fact that I am not physically healthy enough to use them anymore and they are just taking up space. Hopefully someone else will get some use out of them. It is a bit depressing though to just give up.
  • I am so disgusted by American politics right now. I am disgusted with Trump. I am disgusted with his blindly loyal followers. I am disgusted by those on the left that display blatant hypocrisy and pretend to be “the opposition”, but are just as sold out to big money and corporation interests. I am disgusted by all the pointless warfare my country perpetuates. I am disgusted by the news media that twists everything and often outright lies.  I am disgusted by the lack of empathy many people have towards anyone who is different from them. I am disgusted by the fearmongering and scapegoating. I am disgusted that in the richest country on earth, Flint, MI still doesn’t have clean water, and much of Puerto Rico still doesn’t have power. I am disgusted that 40 million Americans don’t have health care and that 40% of the country can’t afford basic necessities like food and shelter. I am disgusted that conditions have deteriorated to the point that suicide rates have risen 30% since 1999. I am simply disgusted and feel powerless to help.

I Refuse to Be a Social Media Doormat!

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Yesterday I had to make a choice to unfriend someone on Facebook, a choice that I hate to have to make, but am finding more necessary as time goes on. The person I ended up unfriending was an editor and small publisher I had worked with in the past, so there was a little bit of sadness at the loss of a professional relationship as well as a personal one, but to tell the truth, this person had always come across as rude, selfish, and impatient…so have I really lost all that much?

As I am getting older, I am just getting to the point that I am tired of being the kindly doormat that lets others walk all over me because I have a desperate desire to please everyone. I don’t at all mind people who have different opinions and beliefs than I do, in fact, I hope we can learn from one another, but when someone repeatedly shows a clear cruel streak and lack of empathy or compassion for others who are suffering greatly, it pisses me off. I also find it extremely hypocritical when someone throws a fit every time someone criticizes their viewpoint, but they refuse to even listen to any other point of view but their own, even going out of their way to silence any reasonable objection.

Sometimes I think that maybe all the therapy is helping me, because at one time I would have stressed greatly over unfriending someone because I would feel bad about it. But this time, I honestly only feel relief that I won’t have to be a witness to the negativity and mean-spirited vitriol anymore.

Gun Arguments & Mental Illness

I try to not be overly political on my blog, because I don’t want to chase off readers who may have different views, but this whole gun regulations argument that is raging is really wearing me down. I’m not going to go into exact specifics of what I personally believe, although I will say that I both support the American right to protect yourself and your family, while also believing that some regulations and societal protections are not at odds with the spirit of the 2nd Amendment as written.

What I really want to talk about today though is how horrible some of the gun arguments being thrown around right now really are. So many of them totally lack any sense of logic or consistency. So many people are digging their heels in and refusing to give an inch or even consider an alternate point of view for even a second. On one side you have those who may honestly over-vilify all guns, but on the other side you have those who practically worship at the altar of firearms.

On the more personal side, as the wife of a teacher, the whole “arm teachers” idea is one that horrifies me. There is so very much that could go horribly, tragically wrong with that game plan. I also feel like those who suffer from any form of mental illness (like myself) are all collectively being thrown under the bus as violent, evil creatures by some of the media. There is a huge difference in my opinion between immaturity combined with selfish or narcissistic rage and true mental illness. Plus, many of these shooters just seem to buy into violent ideologies, which isn’t in itself a mental illness.

Arguing on the Internet, Should I Disengage?

I really should know better by now. I really should learn to just disengage with ignorant or narrow-minded people who refuse to even consider any viewpoint but their own. I should learn that it takes away from my happiness and peaceful life by wandering into pointless debates with people who I know I’m never going to get to even consider an idea that has any nuance or depth to it.

My therapist today encouraged me to disengage from these people, to stop letting them level personal attacks at me over simple differences of opinion. If I want to stop being bullied or pushed around, I have to stop allowing it. Of course, none of this applies to you guys (my blog followers), but more has to do with people on other social media who I happen to be acquaintances with in my real life. Even if they are distant familial relations, I have no obligation to let them project their crazy, illogical, rigid way of thinking onto me.

If you are going to tell me that I am evil, immoral, or dishonest just because I don’t believe what you believe, I really don’t need you in my life.

Illusions

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If I could have one wish, I would wish more than anything that we as humanity could let go of our illusions –

religious illusions
political illusions
personal illusions

so that we could take a cold, hard look at reality as it actually is, and work together to solve our real problems at the core. Of course, I would have to start with myself, being willing to let go of any illusions I still hold, illusions I am blind to. In fact, I have found that it is almost impossible for any of us to recognize our own illusions until we have come to a place where we are willing to let them go.

*Art by Maranda Russell

I Love a Good Conspiracy

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Admission time…I LOVE a good conspiracy. JFK. Roswell. 9/11. The Illuminati. Skull and Bones. I love it all. Sometimes I think conspiracy theorists can go too far (Sandy Hook being a hoax comes to mind), but overall, I’m willing to view evidence either way and see why people come up with the conspiracy theories they cling to. Sometimes the evidence makes me highly suspect foul play, even if I can’t prove it. And that’s the thing, I will tell others I suspect a potential false flag, but I won’t make a proclamation that I know the truth for sure. Of course I could be wrong. There are some things I do not believe were false flags that I could be wrong about too of course.

So with the Las Vegas shooting, I have been taking in media from a mainstream perspective as well as watching some videos and supposed “evidence” that the shooting may have actually been a state sponsored false flag (false flag does NOT mean it didn’t happen, just that the government planned it). I have not been convinced either way. The footage of gunfire possibly coming from the 4th floor is rather fascinating, but not conclusive proof. Of course motive is a question whether you believe the media narrative or the false flag narrative. False flags normally are done to demonize a group of people, give an excuse to start a war, or distract from something else the government doesn’t want you to notice is going on. With Trump in office, God only knows what they might try to distract us from!

Regardless of whether things like this are crazy people gone rogue or some kind of sinister plot cooked up in Washington, I do support banning high capacity assault weapons. In my opinion, normal people just don’t need access to those weapons. Of course, that doesn’t mean I trust the government either, but heavily armed governments vs heavily armed rebels just ends up with dead people everywhere. I like to believe there is another way to make change, which definitely needs to be made. I’ve studied how the US government supports terrorism around the world and it convinces me they are undoubtedly capable of inflicting such things on their own people should it suit them.

So yes, I do enjoy a good conspiracy and might post about them, but that doesn’t mean I am putting aside all skepticism. I’m just skeptical about both sides.

Why I, In Good Conscience, Cannot Vote for Hillary

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I have been struggling for a while about what I should do on voting day. Part of me said that I needed to vote for Clinton because I live in an important swing state (Ohio) and there is a reasonable possibility that the unknown loose cannon that is Trump might be even worse than Clinton. Not to mention the fact, that since getting the nomination, Trump has been surrounding himself with establishment right wing Republicans, which definitely don’t represent my own point of view. Also, I couldn’t help but think of those all-important Supreme Court vacancies that the next president will undoubtedly fill. Surely Clinton would pick people at least a little better than Trump, since I am personally against theocracy in any form and don’t think religious beliefs should be used to form law.

However, I do have some major issues with Clinton. #1 – Her ties to the establishment, big banks, and corporations. #2 – She has made some horrible decisions (voting for the Iraq War, NAFTA, initial support of the TPP, her email stupidity, etc.) #3 – She is often described by those who know her personally, or have worked for her (such as secret service agents) as narcissistic, angry, cold, vengeful, and calculating…aspects it is definitely easy to see in her. However, I could look past these aspects, as they still didn’t make her necessarily worse than Trump. What I can’t look past, is her hunger for war and destruction.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not a complete pacifist. I definitely believe in protecting ourselves and others whenever possible, but not in being a bully or trying to force our rule on the entire world. I support our individual troops, but I do not support our current Military-industrial Complex. Hillary’s obvious intentions to continue or even escalate our current conflicts, engage in war with Iran, and now her threats to further combat with Russia, make me feel that I can no longer vote for her and just hope for the lesser of two evils. If we enter into a war with Russia and/or China, there is a good chance things could end up literally going nuclear and I can not willingly play a part in putting people into place that I feel might intend to lead us that way. I am no fan of Putin, but I do wonder why he has been so adamant that if Hillary becomes president, there will be no turning back and there WILL be all out war between the US and Russia. What does he know that we don’t?

For this reason, I will likely vote third party (or maybe just write in “Turd Sandwich”), even if it is “throwing my vote away” as some accuse. I would rather vote my conscience than vote for the same status quo or even worse that is leading us towards what may look like the destruction of our entire planet if we aren’t careful. If I seem a bit crazy or conspiracy-minded for being worried, please take the time to check out some alternative media, since the stuff we are being spoon fed by the mainstream media is little more than propaganda for the establishment and their cronies.

My New Second YouTube Channel, “Nerdy Agnostic”!

Hello! This is just a short post to alert all my followers that I have started a second YouTube vlog channel entitled “Nerdy Agnostic“. The main reason I started a second channel was because my primary channel, “Maranda’s Toys & Books“, has a significant underage following and I wanted a separate channel where I could discuss more mature subject matter without worrying about kids being exposed to inappropriate material.

My new channel will be about a variety of subjects, but will likely focus largely on religion and secularism (hence the title “Nerdy Agnostic“), philosophy, social issues, politics, my own personal struggles (depression, Asperger’s, chronic illness, etc.), and anything else that I want to share with a more mature audience. If any of this appeals to you, please check out the channel and subscribe!

Here is the introductory video for my new channel: