Saturday, October 13, 2007

the irony and the literary

I had to laugh at the extreme irony when I read this CNN article, "Rice says Kremlin's consolidated power endangers democracy". I have to wonder if the journalist and CNN realize the irony because everything Secretary of State Rice is warning that the Kremlin is doing President Bush is doing in our country as well. I can't help but think that she's either in denial and her subconscious is reflecting exactly what is going on with the US through her criticism of the Kremlin (as people in denial of their own behavior often abhor that same behavior in others), or she is sending out a 'message' in the only way she can, within her current regime. She said "In any country, if you don't have countervailing institutions, the power of any one president is problematic for democratic development," and "I think there is too much concentration of power in the Kremlin....There are clearly questions about the independence of the electronic media and there are, I think, questions about the strength of the Duma," (the Russian parliament). Hello people!!!! That is exactly what's happening in the US, too.

What I'm reading now (or listening to on CD) ... God's Politics by Jim Wallis, a book by a progressive Christian minister concerned (as I am) about the mixing of the conservative fundamentalist Republican politics with Christianity, since of course Jesus' agenda was pretty much completely opposite in many aspects of their current agenda. ie care for the poor, treat all people with humility and respect, love your neighbor as yourself, oppose violence. Instead we have war, privilege to the rich at the expense of the poor, and a very selective addressing of human social ills. Check out his blog, linked above, as well as a video of him on the Daily Show with Jon Stewart. I also just started Leaving the Saints: How I Lost the Mormons and Found My Faith by Martha Beck who is a columnist for O the Oprah magazine.

Books I want to read, having already read many of those on my list from my blog post of 7/21, are below. Any comments on these books? Other suggestions for must-read books? Anything related to Nepal that I'd like since I leave for there in 2 weeks? I'm finding that I'm really craving this literary stimulus these days. I used to love to read as a kid, I devoured books. Since college I pretty much lost time for any pleasure reading until I joined a book club a few years ago, but that circle of friends has fallen away so I didn't read again until recently anything except nonfiction books relevant to my writing topics (and some of my reading list, such as God's Politics and Leaving the Saints, are related to my book - though also enjoyable - I'm really enjoying Leaving the Saints).
  • Water for Elephants: a Novel by Sara Gruen
  • The Black Swan: The Impact of the Highly Improbable by Nassim Taleb
  • The Liars Club: A Memoir by Mary Karr
  • The Red Tent: A Novel by Anita Shreve
  • Love in the Time of Cholera (Oprah's Book Selection for this month!) by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
  • Save Me From Myself: How I Found God, Quit Korn, Kicked Drugs, and Lived to Tell My Story by Brian "Head" Welch
  • Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil by John Berendt
  • Don't Think of An Elephant by George Lakoff
  • The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck
  • Henry and June by Anais Nin
  • The Inheritance of Loss: A Novel by Kiran Desai

All for now! I had an awesome fun day and evening with Daline yesterday. I went to get my immunizations for Nepal and my India Visa and since I was already downtown, spent the rest of the day with Daline. Went to REI shopping for cold weather clothes and such (got sooo many cute clothes! and warm!), and had so much fun esp trying on funny hats. We ate lunch at the Hobbit Cafe, then dinner at Whole Foods then went back to her sisters pad to chat and hang out. She played me Brown-Eyed Girl on her guitar which she'd learned at lessons. I LOVE that song! Love and laughter to all!!

Some funky robots in a window in Berkeley on Telegraph Avenue.

Me and my niece Kira!

My adorable niece playing with yuk soup!

Me, my "sister-in-law" and friend Zofia and Peggy Vincent, author of Baby Catcher in CA last weekend!


Miranda said...

OK, this is spooky but just shows great minds think alike, ha ha. I was saying this morning to my husband, why isn't anyone publishing anything about the fact that so many things we said we feared about the Soviet Union during the Cold War, supposedly "fought" to prevent our people from being spied on and controlled under totalitarianism, are happening here and now under Bush? Then I read your blog and said, thank goodness I am not the only one who noticed!

TXsharon said...

Beautiful pictures!

The irony these days never ends.