It’s getting hard to recall when Americans weren’t hysterical. When once we admired the tall, quiet, western hero — soft-spoken and brave, but slow to anger, devoted to justice. Not brash, boastful, or reckless.

It’s getting hard to recall when Americans were the good guys (at least in the movies) and not just heavily armed wannabes. The movie good guys finished a lot of fights, but started few. You had to push them, hard, before they fought back, but then only with good reason and right clearly on their side. No question.

It’s getting hard to recall a time when the only thing we had to fear was fear itself. A time when a confident America refused to be terrorized. Now (as Digby noted yesterday), conservative pundits stare out of TV screens as if reading from a badly written, made-for-TV script and sternly warn an America already armed to the teeth, “You need to be afraid.” It’s just what ISIS wants (along with Glock, Smith & Wesson, Ruger, Heckler & Koch, and Colt Industries). And like the Eloi entranced, Americans again trudge numbly down to the gun store.

It’s getting hard to recall when Americans weren’t so jumpy that they’d go to guns with any stranger over a perceived threat, over any noise in the night (maybe a daughter), and with any actor, state or stateless, who looks at us sideways on the street, because Omigod! American leaders — trained police too — weren’t that easily rattled. Politicians didn’t stare wildly out of TV screens and rave about the gates of hell being unleashed and terrorists coming to kill us in our beds. Those were the poseurs, the weak-kneed, movie bureaucrats we cheered to see finally humiliated and deposed in Act 3 when the real hero stepped in. The one with a quiet strength who could keep his/her cool and act, not react.

The jumpiness smacks of an empire in decline, bereft of self-confidence, desperate to prove to itself through bombing something that it’s still got it. It says more about us than about our adversaries.

And it’s getting hard to recall a time America wasn’t at war with Whomeva.

Apologies to Tom Sullivan from digby’s blog, for posting this entire thing.


The decline of empire is messy at best. 

(via kenyatta)

Thinking it may be time to cash out soon. Who want to start a new country? I have some ideas for a flag.

(via kenyatta)

Sometimes your friend writes a song and you make a music video for it eight years later when the band no longer exists. Sounds about right.


Watched half of the Burning Man documentary on Netflix and then hit STOP. It seems like a good idea gone bad.

Maybe we should start something different where a few people get together in the woods around a campfire and have fun. Maybe around 10 people. I will call you to schedule.

I have come back to Tumblr just because Kristen Stewart said something important.


"By the way nobody knows. Nobody knows what the f—k is going on. You’re going to die. You’re going to lay next to the people that you know the most in life, the people that you’re going to grow old with. But you’re going to lay next to them in the middle of the night deeply curious about them and who they are, because nobody f—king knows anything."

- Kristen Stewart, of all people, has figured it out.

Patterns of intelligence.

Patterns of intelligence.


The Long Haul // Cardinal’s Building

It’s been a little while since we’ve had the chance to catch up with the folks at Cardinal Spirits as they continue their work towards completing their brand new distillery. In part 3 of ‘The Long Haul’, the construction is coming along nicely, ever-nearing completion, with a video tour of the new facility.

"We had delays, and we’re over budget." said every building owner, ever. I’ve learned that delays and budget overruns are pretty much the rule rather than the exception for construction projects. Luckily, we planned for them, and are still pretty much on schedule for starting initial production in October.

We’ve learned a lot during the process of designing and building our distillery - it seems like we learn about a new concept every day, only to quickly move on to the next. It reminds me a little of the Matrix, where they can just learn to fly a helicopter by downloading the knowledge, and can fly away in a matter of seconds. 

Going into this thing, we didn’t know anything about the glamorous and sensual world of municipal waste water treatment. So we read books, worked with environmental engineers, hired water analysis firms, and met with lots of city officials. Eventually we came up with a good strategy for treating our stillage. So, now we know how to do that. Will we ever use that knowledge again? Maybe, if we build another production facility someday. But as soon as that hurdle was crossed, we had to learn about HVAC system design, then we had to learn about state and municipal health codes for beverage service… it’s never-ending. And it’s a hell of a lot of fun if you love solving problems.

Everyday we are making steady progress on the building. It’s exciting to see our new home coming together. There are a lot of pieces in motion and it’s a slow process, but we are at the stage where you can start to see how everything will look when it comes together. Soon we’ll have doors and windows instead of holes in our walls, and soon after we’ll have a working distillery that we can be proud of.