Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Trickle-down Economics

My Radical and Politically Incorrect Artist’s View

The theory is associated with Ronald Reagan (Reaganomics) and the Democratically controlled congress during his presidency, which followed his lead and cut the top marginal income tax rate from 70% to 28%. The idea is that given more money the rich will invest in business infrastructure and equities, and that will somehow filter down to the middle class and poor because employment will increase. There is absolutely no proof that any such thing occurs. In fact, evidence is accumulating that demonstrates the opposite, and no economist has ever proposed a "trickle-down" theory of economics. Instead, macroeconomics adheres to a "supply-side" theory. I don't need to point out that instead business infrastructure has been transferred to the third world and unemployment in the USA has exploded with the more recent Bush tax cuts.

I would go so far in my radical political stance to propose that any trickle-down economic proponent is a Twenty-first Century Marie Antoinette. Instead of the infamously incorrect quote, “Let them eat cake,” they might as well be saying “let them eat our table scraps!” Thus, I have created the graphic above.

Thursday, July 26, 2012


Orlan as Understood by Isaac Stolzfuts

In December of 2004 Isaac wrote about Orlan, the famous French feminist artist . He looked at the artist's work from the 1990’s in which she created a number of makeovers posturing as “the reincarnation of St. Orlan” in which she changed her visage to represent various idealized historical sculptures and paintings of women by male artists. She performed these makeovers by having plastic surgery. Isaac wrote a number of entries about Orlan. This is but one of those. I personally find all this absolutely bizarre because "Googling" Orlan turns up a photograph of the "Orlan" spacesuit by NASA, the almost defunct (1% of US budget) USA space administration, the ultimate makeover of Orlan into a space person! Ye gad! :)


She is the courageous French artist, the ultimate reality makeover. Actually, she is the first makeover from which all the others derive. However, Orlan’s purpose has to do with negating all the misplaced values around which the reality makeover TV shows are built. Orlan is her own canvas, and her work is about actual feminine values of self worth, including historical reference to art works that portray the highest of values to which a woman might subscribe. Orlan speaks to us of misplaced moral values that are in truth prejudice disguised as value, false realities, and destructive relationships between self image, the soul, and the actual physical presence that contains the first two, the body. Additionally, Orlan’s work is about communication between the artist’s production concerning the experience of his / her body, and the viewer’s experience of his / her own body. She is creating perhaps the most complex body (pun intended) of work of the (post) Postmodern era.

So, Who is Orlan?

Orlan has purposefully obfuscated her own history, a possible comment about the contemporary cultural belief that truth is discovered through detailed knowledge about the personal lives of individuals. We do know, however that she is 57 years old, and that she was born in St. Etienne, France.

She moved to Paris, France in 1980. Presently, she is Professor of of Fine Arts at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Dijon... ...Influenced by Duchamp, she considers her body a “readymade” and refers to her own work as “Carnal Art.”*

Orlan states that she is feminist, that her “Carnal Art” is against pain, religion - she states specifically, the Christian religion - and convention, but for public debate, atheism, and freedom. Thus, her art is for physical presence, and fortunately, in our time of increasing fundamentalist control of society and state in all cultures, a voice that insists on reason based in physical presence as opposed to faith based oppositions.

Do I worry that her physical posturing makes any threat to my Liberal Christian positions. No, dear journal, I do not, because my faith is open to the physical presence of Christ’s body in the world. He lived, was a man, and I believe was heir to all that that entails. Do Orlan’s notions pose a threat to fundamentalist dogma? Yes, because dogma is based in human misconceptions and positions made hard as stone by people who are unable or refuse to open their minds in order to think through the conundrums that culture, politics, religion, and science place before them.

*image is in the public domain - from Wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Iss009e29620.jpg) viewed 9:30 AM, EDT, Thursday, July 26, 2012.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Cape Henlopen

July 12, 2012

Spending a day on Cape Henlopen is much more relaxing than the typical visit to beach resorts, because the Delaware state park has been kept mostly in its natural state. The cape has a magnificent “dunescape” including the highest dune between Capes Cod and Hatteras. Wild life is abundant, including deer, and many different species of birds. There is a nature center with nature trails for bird watchers, hikers, and bikers as well as a campground with mobile home facilities, and summer camps and dorms for nonprofit use. Also within the borders of the park is Fort Miles, the now closed historic World War II base with its guns barracks and observation towers designed to protect Atlantic Seaboard shipping from German U-boats. However, I will hold Fort Miles for another journal entry.

My partner and I spend many days exploring and visiting the various beaches in the park. I have stated in the past that whenever I am by the ocean I am in church, and Cape Henlopen is one of God’s most magnificent cathedrals.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Newest New York Banksy Artworks

I’ll not go into background here. You can “Google” Banksy and/or go back to my own entry of May 1, 2011 for Banksy’s possible identity.

How does this guy do it? There has got to be an army of folks behind these newer over-sized politicized graffiti. A few years ago his stenciled prints were small enough that I could imagine one person under dark-of-night cover creating them. However, the more recent works are so big as to require a host of painters, and a gaggle of lawyers to lease or rent the wall space – I can’t imagine these over-sized artworks appear illegally without some repercussions. He is so “in your face,” yet nobody knows his actual identity? How is that possible?

Monday, July 9, 2012

A Walk Through the Backyard Garden in June

Video and photos shot in June 2012, and in years past

 Our Backyard explodes with blooms during June. Early on, the last of the Rhododendrons – then the Celandine Poppies open, some seeded in places totally unexpected. Last year in June the poppies bloomed with the Campion in the farthest bed near the woods. This year, they bloomed across the yard with the daylilies. We always put in some Vinca because we like the perky little pink, red, violet, and purple fellows. They also reseed themselves so that we count on the offspring from last years’ plants reappearing later in the summer. Several different varieties of daylilies beginning with the original British imports brought by the colonists reappear at various times, some carrying over into July. All of this accompanied by the sounds of birds, and the little water feature we put in next to the porch steps. Rogers and Hammerstein’s Carrousel Lyrics have it right – “June is busting out all over.”

Of Course, "Carrousel" is a bit more exuberant than the video I've made. Instead, I wanted to convey the peace and contentment I feel when walking through our garden, and I've succeeded.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Fourth of July

Coming soon - Isaac returns.

Yes. It's the 4th of July, and Isaac should be an American hero. After all, he was captured by space aliens and has actually made off with their ship and returned to earth. I have it on the best authority that any day now Isaac will be broadcasting his own one man talk show from outer space to earth. But first, let's review.