“Our enemies are innovative and resourceful, and so are we. They never stop thinking about new ways to harm our country and our people, and neither do we.” - George W. Bush

All The Best


I want to thank everyone who participated in the Elephant Bar over the past twelve years. We had millions of visitors from all around the World and you were part of it. Over the past dozen years, two or three times a night, I would open my laptop and some of you were always there. I will miss that.

My plans are to continue my work with technology and architecture. You know my interests and thoughts.

At times, things would get a little rough in the EB. To those of you that I may have offended over the years, I apologize. From all of you, I learned and grew.

An elephant never forgets.
Be well.

Deuce, 21 June 2018

Saturday, December 03, 2011

No Need For Heaven or Hell, Lakota Faith


  1. Show of Hands:
    All those who (pretend) it would not be a bummer to trade our life for theirs.

    First Prize is a free bus trip to the OWS gathering of your choice.

  2. ...although a medicine man might be preferable to what's coming down the line under Rufus.... er, Hussein "Care"

    Talk about a contradiction in terms.

  3. This comment has been removed by the author.

  4. Why that little punk Holder was never beaten shitless is beyond me.

  5. WiO wrote:

    "And you dont discuss issues seriously...

    You fling rants and arrows, you are not capable of actually having a discussion.

    Just nonsense..."

    hee hee hee haa haa HEE HEE HAA HAA HAA BWAHAHAHAHAHAAA!!!

    The lack of self-awareness is really quite funny!

  6. what is the piece of Sioux literature I should look to for enlightenment in the BCE or CE?)

    Though it is not exactly literature but a recitation taken down and translated by Neihardt's daughter, Black Elk Speaks might move you.

    The two spirit beings come like arrows falling, and he rises above his teepee - to the Other World --then the great vision unrolls, page after page.

    And don't think there isn't a hell for the concupescent, the violent and the hateful.

    The original notes are at the University of Nebraska Library in a special section.

    I didn't have to try to remember my great vision, it remembered itself all these years. Black Elk


  7. The Indians fought over land all the time.

  8. Indians have their fair share of bullshit artists.

  9. You might try God Is Red by Vine Deloria Jr., a Nakota.

    He also wrote about Custer's Last Stand, a favorite topic among the reds, a good seller.


  10. Rufus II said...

    Indians have their fair share of bullshit artists.


    Rufus, you don't mean it.


  11. Atrophysicists, we're in short supply.

    Bullshitters, we're right up there with the Big Boys. :)

  12. Especially those with a lot of Dutch, and Irish on the other side. :)

  13. I think sometimes we pay short shrift to that old cliche, "Necessity is the Mother of Invention."

    The Cherokee inhabited a large land, rich in game, and mild of climate. It didn't require a whole hell of a lot of invention to live a comfortable life.

    And, it was hard for a controlling political/elite/priest class to gain (and keep) control, because when things got oppressive the subjects could just fade into the forest, or row their canoe downstream a few hundred miles.

  14. The Nez Perce (males) basically had it made in the shade here.

    Every season of the year a new run of steelhead or salmon. Nice climate down in the river valleys.

    Women did much of the heavy lifting day to day.


  15. "And, it was hard for a controlling political/elite/priest class to gain (and keep) control, because when things got oppressive the subjects could just fade into the forest, or row their canoe downstream a few hundred miles."


    ...on second thought...

  16. I'd take any shaman in the forest deep before an Obama death panel.


  17. "Women did much of the heavy lifting day to day."

    So there ARE some sililarities.

  18. Plenty of sililarities.

    We just don't fish as much, alas.


  19. My wife would gladly do the heavy lifting if she could have her health/weight back.

    Anybody here have any experience with GERD?

    (gastroesophogealrefluxdisease) or some such.
    Docs really screwed this one up: they took 4 years looking for all kinds of exotic shit, which means this got put off so long she almost has an ulcer in her foodpipe. Now she can hardly eat and is way too skinny.

    Any knowledge of proven cures/lifestyles/meds would be greatly appreciated.

  20. Having worked in the industry, I'll take an Obama Death Panel before a Blue Cross Death Panel any day.

  21. Is that a fancy way of saying "Acid Reflux/"

  22. Never heard of that, Doug.

    I finally cashed in on Blue Cross.

    6 days before I went on Medicare.

    $155,000 for a new hip, titanium. And about $20,000 physical therapy.


  23. The Cherokee were ruthlessly pillaged!

    If Indians believe in no heaven or hell, please explain the universal desecration of the bodies at the Little Big Horn - seems that someone forgot to pass along the message.

    Yes, Deuce, literature does mean something: It means a culture's self-awareness. It need not necessarily mean a culture's superiority, although often the two go hand-in-hand technologically.

  24. Jeeze, that's a lot of Therapy.
    Can we be sure some of it was not sex therapy at the Indian Casino?

  25. PT is 45 bucks an hour here:

    20 k / 45 = 444.444 hours.

    WTF ???

  26. Some feel writing things down ruined the older more spontaneous spiritualities, ruined the memory, and caused a lot of unnecessary arguments about shit.

    Black Elk's experience was written down, transcribed, thank goodness, or I wouldn't know anything about it.


  27. They had me in the rest home, Doug, 24/hrs/day.

    They had me on 12 different pills and vitamins. The only thing that was doing me any good was the naproxium sodium I had my wife smuggle in. When they found it they confiscated it, and I threw a fit at Big Nurse, and left.

    Wife has been taking care of me ever since.


  28. Rufus II said...
    Is that a fancy way of saying "Acid Reflux/"

    Fairly common, I tink.

    The valve/sphincter at the stomach opening don't seal good and the acid eats up the foodpipe.

    Never shoulda took 4 years to find.

  29. How long ago was that, Bob?

    Aren't some people lucky enuff to walk fairly quickly.

    ...maybe that's just knees...

  30. There's not a lot of utility in "readin' and writin'" in a non-agricultural society.

  31. The physical therapist told me PT was the only department that made any money there.

    They had a big meeting and decided I should stay another 10 days. The PT guy thought I could go home any time.

    It's like in the rental business, you want to keep the units filled up.

    They wanted to trap me there for another 10 days just for the extra bucks, the shits.

    And, it's a Lutheran rest home.


  32. Holder feels like his spiritualities are being unfairly brought down by the written word.

  33. Prilosec. Over the counter. About a dollar a day. Or, go to a doctor, and soak the ins company for $145.00/mo for Nexium (basically, same molecule as prilosec.)

    Or, better yet, if you have a co-pay have him prescribe the prilosec generic, "Omeprazole." (That's what I take.)

  34. In retrospect, Q, I do believe the correct word of choice, would have been ...


    mea culpa, again.

    Then again, the Sumerian folk wrote down most all of those Hebrew myths, well before the Hebrews did.

    Generations before the life and times of Abraham.

  35. Couple months. Dang near died of exposure out on the street before someone stopped and called an ambulance.

    Wife takes me out to the Mall to exercise. There are a lot of us cane people out there, in the morning. We are almost a community, now.

    The other day there was a guy sitting on a bench, with one crutch. So I hobble up, tap my right leg and say "New titanium hip."

    He says "Shit, I got two, and a shoulder and one knee. And I'm goin' in for the second shoulder."

    "You'll make a buzz at the airport."

    "They don't do it that way now. But I can tell you this getting old is the shits."

    "I agree with that", says I.

    He will be down to one original knee, soon.


  36. Yeah, wifes on prilosec, ...1 week in, little progress.

    Wish she had started 4 years ago.

  37. I don't see how it's possible to miss acid reflux.

  38. I've got it all figured out at the rest home there.

    The name of the game is run up the bill.

    I had two PT's one for upper body and one for lower body. I must have had 14 other people working around me one way or other. I fell in love with a Filippino named Katherine. I told an older nurse I had fallen in love with Katherine, and she says, every male that comes through here does. She was that good.

    The other big thing was when Vern, the guy on the other side of the curtain in my room, managed to shit in his shoes. I hear Vern say "Ah, shit, I shit in my shoes!"

    The nurses come in "Vern, you shit in your shoes."

    How he did this I don't know cause I couldn't see but my hunch is he was standing up - an unusual thing - and cut loose like a cement truck into a convertible car. It was a big, big event.


  39. Fosmax for osteoporosis started the whole thing.
    Poison drug.

  40. Rufus II said...
    I don't see how it's possible to miss acid reflux.


    ...a bunch of expensive tests looking for something else.
    Big Mistake.

  41. The Prilosec should be up to full strength by now, I think.

    Will the esophagal wall repair itself?

  42. A friend at work said he was quite a bit better after about a month, now is fine, but he didn't damned near have an ulcer.

    How long did the Rufus take to heal?

  43. Will the esophagal wall repair itself?

    That's the question.
    It will if it's not continuing to get screwed.

    When I burned a hole in my stomach with Ibuprofen, they had me not eat for four days, no liquids, even, except IV.

    I think that would be best for her since she's about to starve to death after all this time.

  44. Doug, I'd read about acid reflux, so I went to the Doctor, and asked for a prescription (before Prilosec went OTC) when the symptoms first started bothering me.

    I'd say, just a couple of days in my case.

  45. Apaches believed in an afterlife. If they could make their enemies scream in this life, then that enemy brave would be his servant in the next. So they would stake their prisoners out and pick over their feet with a knife like leftover turkey, which always seemed to work.

  46. Seems like Desert people are always more cruel. Harsh beliefs for a harsh environment, I suppose.

  47. Pretty much everybody believed in an afterlife, back then.

    The heresy began in the modernizing west.


  48. The Mongols take the cake, at that rufus.

    Great cavalrymen.
    Hard folk.

    Coming off those seemingly barren steppes of central Asia.

  49. What did Genghis tell them? "You must have sinned greatly for God to have sent me?"


  50. I don't remember reading where the Cherokee got too tied up with the whole "afterlife" thing.

    Most of their stories seemed to involved "getting along with rattlesnakes." :)

  51. Leveled entire cities in what is now eastern Turkey and northern Iran.
    Salted the earth, poisoned the wells.

    Killed most everyone in the area, if the mayor or governor would not quickly submit.

    Over ran and came to control Persia, Iraq and Palestine. Most all of China, Korea, North, Central and South.

    But could not float an adequate navy. They were incapable of disembarking an army onto the beaches of Japan. Lost the army, at sea, in the attempt.

    A historical lesson that is more than relevant, today.

  52. This is what wiki tells the whirled of how those that conquered, militarily handled the religions of the whirled.

    Mongols were highly tolerant of most religions, and typically sponsored several at the same time. At the time of Genghis Khan in the 13th century, virtually every religion had found converts, from Buddhism to Christianity and Manichaeanism to Islam.
    To avoid strife, Genghis Khan set up an institution that ensured complete religious freedom, though he himself was a shamanist.

    Under his administration, all religious leaders were exempt from taxation, and from public service.

    Mongol emperors were known for organizing competitions of religious debates among clerics, and these would draw large audiences.

  53. I was checkin' that map, the Mongols didn't bother going south along the beaches of the Mediterranean.

    Not being sailors of surfers, kinda figures they didn't value the beach.

    Not being motivated by zealots of any of the Abrahamic religions, Jerusalem didn't matter to them.

    They went north, into Europe.
    Onward to Mother Russia!

  54. Rufus II said...

    "Doug, I'd read about acid reflux, so I went to the Doctor, and asked for a prescription (before Prilosec went OTC) when the symptoms first started bothering me.

    I'd say, just a couple of days in my case.


    So Rufus figured out in 20 minutes what it took 3 Docs four years.
    Bad medicine indeed.
    Don't know why the Fuck neither she nor I did.
    I was off thinking she got a bug from a bum icemaker.
    Stupid me.

    Thanks for the info, Rufus...
    ...and the humiliation.
    I deserved it.

  55. Those Mongols, they were merchants, demanding "Free & Fair" Trade.

    Across most of the then civilized whirled.

    Which they just "happened" to rule.

  56. That's where the resources were.

    Not being, yet, in the age of photovoltaics, unlimited silicon didn't hold much allure.

  57. DR said...
    Not being sailors of surfers, kinda figures they didn't value the beach.

    ...ever heard of "kamikaze"...It depended on which beach at what time.

    By the way, as a man in touch with the arcane, why did kamikaze pilots wear helmets, DR?

  58. To keep their ears from freezing off?

  59. And they had a "small" population base to do all this with.

    The Mongols controlled ...
    16% of the Earth's total land area, and held sway over a population of 100 million. ...

    While the whirled's population in 1259, estimated at 400 million.

    A good history of the Mongols

    At the city of Merv, accounts described an execution of 700,000.

    At Samarkand, women were raped and sold into slavery. Devastation was so great that the Kwarazmian Empire itself was nearly wiped away from history.

    The conquest of the Kwarazm also created another remarkable event. After his defeat, the Kwarazm Shah fled west and Subedei followed in pursue with a force of 20,000 men. The Kwarazm Shah died, however, but Subedei went further. He brought his army north and defeated a heavily outnumbering Russian and Cuman army at the Khalka River. He went further and attack the Volga Bulgars ...

  60. :)

    Rufus, the answer man -

    Why did kamikaze pilots wear helmets?
    September 9, 1994

    Dear Cecil:

    I read this as a tagline on the Internet, but it's still a good question: why did kamikaze pilots wear helmets?

    — Matt McCullar, Arlington, Texas

    Dear Matt:

    To keep their ears warm, goofball. As anyone acquainted with aviation or basic physics knows, the pilot's helmet has never been intended to provide protection against a crash. If the plane encounters the landscape too abruptly you're sausage no matter what you're wearing. The leather or cloth head covering worn by WW2 aviators was a holdover from open cockpit days, when you needed protection against the wind and rain.


  61. Yes, allen, the divine wind blew.

    The ships of the Imperial Mongol Navy had been conscripted from the rivers of China.

    Those that were built for the task, built on the river boat model.

    These had no deep keels. But were flat bottomed or very shallow draft.

    The Mongols, nor their Chinese subjects, had much experience in the blue water. The set sail to Japan in with brown water fleet, and paid the price when the winds blew and the seas came up.

    As I say, it is instructive, as to the Chinese, today. They having an adequate brown water navy, without much blue water capability.

    Now, that is changing, but slowly.

  62. Anything floating around on top of the water is a sitting duck in todays world. They'd be better off building submarines.


  63. If the Mongols had a blue water navy, they'd have been able to weather the storm.

    But they did not.

    They were cavalrymen that had conquered at will. They did not realize their limitations.

    Another lesson that carries forward, regarding military prowess and superiority without referencing the real whirled limitations of geography.
    The logistic route to Kabul, through Pakistan, comes to mind.

  64. .

    When it comes to conventional warfare, there are always options to counter superior force, not that they always work.

    Back in the 13th century Vietnam defeated invading Mongol armies a number of times. In one, it was by using guerilla tactics and a scorched earth policy letting the heat and terrain do much of the damage. In another, they defeated an army of 400,000 by destroying the huge Mongol navy that was to keep the army supplied.

    In the later instance, using a technique barrowed from 300 years earlier, they drove huge steels stakes into the river bottom, lured the Mongols in at high tide, and then watch all the ships sink when the tide went out.

    Tough cookies them Vietnamese and clever.


  65. No one can invade Formosa with submarines, boobie.

    Takes landing craft, cargo carriers, fuel tankers.

    That is not just true of the logistic requirements regarding Formosa, think of what they'd need for Australia.

    Where our Marines will be standing ready to repel them.

  66. .

    I guess back then it might have been iron stakes. Don't rember the details too clearly.

    Let's just say metal stakes.

    Or was it metal-stipped stakes.

    Let's just call it stakes.



  67. Those Mongols, not much for boats or ships and sailing.

  68. so much for keels

    This song has something for nearly everyone. All it lacks is a klezmer clarinetist.

  69. But their comparatively small, highly mobile strike forces marched across Eurasia, at leisure.

  70. Submarines, not to mention aircraft, would put all those landing craft, cargo carriers, fuel tankers at the bottom of the sea, crapper.

    I say could.

    I don't know what they actually have.

    If they are relying on Obama, they'll need a divine wind, maybe a meteorite hit just there, at the right time.

    It's much more likely Taiwan will rejoin - or join - China in some agreed to manner one of these days.


  71. Crapper, it's now 7pm. Your bedtime.



  72. I was looking at the satellite imagery from Google along that Chinese/Vietnamese border area.

    Tough, mountainous terrain.

    Hard to execute mobile cavalry maneuvers on that kind of ground.

  73. Then, boobie, we win.

    We've got submarines, but then so do the Chinese. However, we control the skies, so there is certainly an advantage to that.

    A couple of B-2s could sink their whole invasion fleet. Death from above, through stealth and precision weaponry.

    So they cannot float their boats, to invade Formosa, nor Australia.

    Glad you agree that the Chinese do not pose a naval military threat to any of our proxies in the Pacific.

  74. Each Mongol horseman had a string of some ten mounts. Therefore, the Mongols became famous for their forced marches, showing up for battle days ahead of "schedule". Given their bows and their method of firing, they were nearly invincible.

    Re: Vietnam

    …just one man’s opinion, but its would-be conquerors have all had that “Duh” moment – as in what do we do with this place if we win…

  75. The Vietnamese have been occupied a couple of times, but never defeated. We could have if Johnson had had the balls. But, taking the long view, it's almost certainly better that he didn't.

  76. I'd call them high stakes Quirk.

    Great must the mirth had been watching that spectacle.

    Petards w/Retards

  77. Oh, I'd certainly never wish to "humiliate" a bud, Doug. :)

    I just happened to get lucky.

  78. A petard is, or rather was, as they have long since fallen out of use, a small engine of war used to blow breaches in gates or walls. They were originally metallic and bell-shaped but later cubical wooden boxes. Whatever the shape, the significant feature was that they were full of gunpowder - basically what we would now call a bomb.

    I always thought it was a scabbard...

  79. Latest results from the Egyptian elections indicate that Islamist parties are likely to have a strong majority in the new parliament.

    The political wing of the Muslim Brotherhood and a more conservative Salafist Islamist party are leading, while secular liberals are behind.

    However, most candidates will have to go through to two further rounds of voting over the next six weeks.

    The Muslim Brotherhood called for the will of the people to be respected.

  80. I always thought a scabbard was...

  81. I thought a "petard" was some sort of sword, or epee. As in: hoisted on his own petard

  82. Sandusky needs a new lawyer.


  83. That's an interesting link, Rat.

    The Mongols were the only Army in history to mount a successful Winter invasion of Russia.

  84. ..because to a mongol a russian winter was like a mongol spring.

  85. Adolph gave it the old college try.

    ...does that get me that award thingie?

  86. Sandusky needs a new soul.

    Where did the name Sandusky, Ohio, come from?


  87. Texas Rep. Ron Paul has risen into second place, and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney has slid to third with just over a month before the Iowa caucuses kick off voting in the presidential nominating process.

    Gingrich has support from 25% of likely Republican caucusgoers, Paul is at 18% and Romney at 16%.

  88. The poll taken prior to Mr Cain's announcement

    His 8% has to go ...
    ... somewhere.

    I'm thinking most will gravitate to Newt.
    Dr Paul at 18%, that's grand!

  89. That too, Doug.

    He wouldn't have needed a lawyer at all.

    The generally accepted theory is that the name "Sandusky" is an Anglicization of the phrase San Too Chee, meaning "cold water." A less accepted theory is that the city was named after a Polish fur trader by the name of Anthony Sadowski or Jacob Sodowsky.[7]


  90. There is a long row to hoe, before the preliminary election in Egypt results in the military becoming subservient to the legislature.

    They have said they will retain power until a President is elected, tentatively scheduled for July.

  91. Others might be pleased to learn that the process "makes cremation much greener by utilizing its by-products," in the words of cremation engineer Steve Looker, owner and chief executive officer of the Florida-based company B&L Cremation Systems


  92. With this fella lookin' to become ...
    The Man.

    ... it's worth remembering that the parliament, when it sits some time in the new year, will have limited power. Egypt currently has a highly centralized presidential system, and the parliament won't have the ability to appoint a government. That power lies with the presidency, currently held by the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF).

    SCAF's continuing power was the driver of the protests ahead of the election, but it also means it will retain significant influence over the next parliament, which is supposed to supervise the writing of a new Constitution. In response to the protests last week, the military promised to hold presidential elections by July of next year.

    If that promise is kept and those elections are fair, it will be the beginning of the military's withdrawal from direct politics and the winner will have a lot of influence on what comes next in Egypt.

    Amr Moussa is hoping he'll be the winner. A decade ago, as Egypt’s foreign minister, he became too popular for then-President Hosni Mubarak’s liking – there was even an Egyptian pop hit titled, “I hate Israel and I love Amr Moussa.” So he was shuffled off to run the Arab League. Now Mr. Moussa is back, leading early polls to be Egypt’s next president.

    An urbane Arab nationalist who joined the Egyptian foreign service in 1958, he’s the polar opposite of the youth activists that drove the Egyptian uprising.

    But his name recognition, political experience, and reputation among many as independent of Mr. Mubarak make him a formidable contender to lead Egypt – if the military gets out of the way.

    Egyptian presidential race is key

    So, this Amr Moussa, betcha ameros to doughnuts that he'll not be "anti-military".

    No, if he's "anti-Israel" than he needs an even larger and stronger military, doesn't he.

    Every politico needs an foreign foe, to justify their MIC spending to the electorate.

    Picking the low fruit, first.