Tuesday, December 17, 2002

History Message from Vaclav Havel

In my lifetime, my country experienced two situations whose consequences turned out to be far-reaching, deep and long-lasting. The first of them was the Munich capitulation when two principal European democracies, supposedly in the interest of peace, yielded to Hitler's pressure and allowed him to dismember the then Czechoslovakia.

They did not save any peace at all. On the contrary: Hitler took their conduct in Munich as the final indication that he was free to unleash a bloody European war, and eventually a world war. I believe that the greater part of my fellow citizens join me in perceiving the Munich experience as evidence in favor of the belief that evil should be resisted as soon as it is born.

We have also had another experience - the occupation by the Warsaw Pact States in 1968. At that time the entire nation reiterated the word 'sovereignty', cursing the official Soviet interpretation that the intervention was an act of 'brotherly help' offered in the name of a value that ranked higher than national sovereignty - in the name of socialism that was allegedly endangered in our country, which allegedly meant a danger to the prospects for a better life for the human race.

Almost everyone in our country knew that the sole objective was to preserve Soviet domination and economic exploitation, but millions of people in the Soviet Union probably believed that the sovereignty of our State was being suppressed in the name of a higher human value.
· Havel’s Wisdom [SMH Webdiary]
· Most Inspiring Person of 2002 [Belief]

Where have all the flowers gone?

We need to remember in Australia where we started and what was thought of authority in 1788. We need to remember what authority did to the Aborigines. We need to remember refugees and all the other people who came to Australia to escape authority. We are right to be sceptical of authority. This is core for us and we know where we have authority. Don't mess with us, the Aussie people. We are ALL refugees from authority in one form or another.
· Gulag Archipelago, Volume VI. The Creeping Erosion - A Sequel? [SMH Webdiary]

Society The age of manipulation

All around us are signs of our rejection of authority.
The therapeutic mentality that urges total revelation and fulfilling our needs and desires reduces others to mere obstacles in path to happiness. Get rid of them.
· Authority [Spiked]

On being happy
The happiest people surround themselves with family and friends, don't care about keeping up with the Joneses next door, lose themselves in daily activities and, most important, forgive easily.
Materialism is toxic for happiness.
· What makes people happy? [USA Today]

Story Well Told From Morning Glory to Gory Reality: Sex For Dummies

I developed a rash and a severe case of medical students’ disease – when a medical student becomes convinced they have whatever illness they’re currently studying. It just appeared out of nowhere and itched so much I could barely sleep. I applied my recently obtained knowledge in an effort to diagnose myself.
· Henrik Ibsen’s Ghosts [The Morning News]