Sunday, September 29, 2013

The Andis Kaulins in China Weekly for September 23 to September 29, 2013

Gratitude:  I am thankful for silence whenever I can find it.

Acknowledgement: I am a sinner.

Requests: I would like everyone to talk less and think more.

The AKIC Week in Brief: The week of September 23rd to 29th was spent anticipating my stretch of five days off from the 29th to the 3rd which I have because of the Chinese National Day holiday. The week as well saw the weather get cooler and Tony have to go to school everyday including Saturday and Sunday.

About AKIC: If you want to learn what Andis & AKIC are all about, you can visit here.

If there are things about AKIC you don't know about, like places and people I mention in the entries below, you can go here to find out what they are all about.

AKIC Weekly Features:

I in in China!  十月一号 是 中华人民共和国的天。我觉得十一月不是中国的生日。我喜欢中国。 我不喜欢中华人民共和国。

I am Canadian! July 1st is Canada's National Day. On that day, John A. McDonald stood in front of the parliament in Ottawa and declared the establishment of the Dominion of Canada. Well.... Not exactly.

I am Latvian (sort of)! My full name is Andis Edmunds Kaulins. Notice how all the words in my full name end with “s.” That's the way it is with many Latvian male names. My father's name is Arnis. My brother's name is Ronalds. Female names end with “a.” My mother's name is Aina. My sister's name is Benita. I have a male cousin named Gunars. Some of my female relative names include Lolita, Gundega, Zinta, and Dzridra.

Wuxi Peach Maoists Update: Visit here to find out how Your Peach Maoists did in week three.

Politically I am Conservative/Reactionary! I wish there were more Republicans like Ted Cruz and less like John McCain. It is nice to see some Republicans take a stand instead of bend over to the Lib-Dems for a change

I teach English! I wish the students would more more imagination. I have so many conversations with them where I have to provide all the ideas for discussion. I sometimes feel the best way to talk to them is by offering them multiple choice questions and asking what thought they agree with.
I am not a freak! I am just stuck with a bunch of them.
I like to Read! Here is what I had been working my way through the past week:
Don Colacho's Aphorisms.  There are 2,988 of them in this book that I compiled for myself.  I read ten aphorisms at a time.  I cut and paste the better ones -- they are all profound actually -- and I put them in my weekly blog entry. (See below)
Ulysses by James Joyce.  I am following along with Frank Delaney as he slowly guides podcast listeners through Joyce's hard-to-read novel.  Delaney figures he will have the whole novel covered in about 22 years.  Delaney completed episode #172 this week and is working his way through the chapter that introduces Leopold Bloom. I am getting ahead of Delaney as far as reading the book.  I will be finished my reading of it, I figure, in a year. I read the novel despite its many blasphemies. It is best to be aware of this stuff because the world is full of it, and the world will always find a way of slapping you in the face with it

The Holy Bible King James Version.   This past week, I have finished reading the Second General Epistle of Peter and was working my way through the First Epistle General of John.

Columns by Father Schall. I have been able to take all his archived writings and place them on the Dotdotdot app.

The Catechism of the Catholic Church. Like Father Schall's writings, I have been able to place its contents on the Dotdotdot app.

The Limits of Pure Democracy by WH Mallock. Finished on the 23rd. Oligarchy is man's natural state. Attempts to have it otherwise are illogical. I recall people saying that Socialism and Communism were great ideas that didn't work in practice. After reading Mallock, I see that that was a lot of hokum. Mallock writing in 1916 was already pointing the illogic of Socialist and Communists.

The Search for Modern China by Jonathan Spence. A good book, but certainly not an authoritative book about China. One gets the impression that China is so big that it is hard for an historian to write a clearly focused book about it. And it is also hard to write about Modern China accurately with the Communists in power. People who can come to China are sacrificing some integrity in order to keep their visas.

Mao Zedong: Man, Not God by Quan Yanchi. A Hagiography given to me by a local.

I like to take photos

I like to make videos

I like to cut and paste quotations:
From Don Colacho:
249 Not reject, but prefer. [I prefer not to be in the company of those I reject and of those who reject me. (This makes Andis a lonely boy) I don't think that is what Colacho means in 249. I think he really means that we should take a positive approach to life.]
253 Two hundred years ago it was permissible to trust in the future without being totally stupid.
But today, who can believe in the current prophecies, since we are yesterday’s splendid future?
257 Industrial society is condemned to forced perpetual progress.
258 When they define property as a social function, confiscation is near; when they define work a social function, slavery is on the way. [The word “social” negates any word its modifies. Thus social work is non-work and social justice is really non-justice. So if property and work become thought of as non-functions, there will be moves afoot to get rid of them and replace them with slavery.]
259 True glory is the resonance of a name in the memory of imbeciles. [Most of the people who have heard of Shakespeare and Beethoven don't know what it is that they actually did.]
262 Those who proclaim themselves avant-garde artists usually belong to yesterday’s vanguard.
263 When only boorish solutions confront each other, it is difficult to express an opinion with subtlety. Rudeness is this century’s passport. [Victim-hood in many western societies can be coin because it enables you to have a passport, or license, to be rude.]
264 The arts flourish in societies that view them with indifference, and perish when the devout reverence of fools encourage them.
265 There are two kinds of men: those who believe in original sin and idiots. [On one score, I am not an idiot.]
268 Sociological categories authorize us to move about in society without paying attention to each man’s irreplaceable individuality. Sociology is the ideology of our indifference toward our neighbor. [I have to battle the temptation to talk about the Chinese like I am a sociologist. I hear and overhear many foreigners who have completely given into the urge. It seems they all want to be like journalists who are most superficial and navel-gazing people you are ever likely to meet.]
270 What still protects man in our time is his natural incoherence. That is to say: his spontaneous horror before consequences implicit in principles he admires. [This quotation could be used against both advocates of abortion and advocates of gun rights. But more people are killed by abortion than by guns....]

From the First Epistle General of John:
2:9 He that saith he is in the light, and hateth his brother, is in darkness until even now.
3:13 Marvel not, my brethren, if the world hate you. [And don't believe it when it says its like you.]

From David Warren:
Not statistics, but proportions, have long intrigued me. The proportion one-in-seven corresponds, I would guess from the extent of my inquiries, to the number of Christians who opted for some version of the monastic life in the High Middle Ages, when it was generally available & a visible alternative to the more worldly familial calling. Then, too, there may have been a disproportion of geriatrics, & the dirt poor in need of some wardship, but the monasteries also attracted many of the young & hip. It is a little-known fact, at least to our contemporary world — one might almost call it a scandal to the worldly — that many actually prefer the celibate, eremitical life, & would choose it if they could. [If only the monastic call had been available to me when I was younger...]

I fashion myself to be a 21st Century Pepys

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