You cannot prevent the birds of sorrow from flying over your head, but you can prevent them from building nests in your hair.
SAG AWARDS I was so moved by the tribute to James Earl Jones, whom I co-starred with in my first movie in the Greek Isles, "The Red Tide." He is such a wonderfully generous actor to work with. I had the honor of also working with two other Oscar winners -- Jose Ferrer and Lila Kedrova.
Friday Updates... below read Paul Begala's FUNNY commentary on sleazeballs. But first, from Daily Om, please read this wonderful article about annoying people.
The Upside of Irritation: Things That Annoy Us
There are many stories of spiritual masters embracing the presence of an annoying student in their community. There is even one story that documents a teacher paying an irritating person to live among his students. From an everyday perspective, this is difficult to comprehend. We generally work hard to avoid people and things that we find annoying so they don’t bother us.
From a deeper spiritual perspective, however, irritation can be an important teacher and indicator that we are making progress on our path. Being able to remain centered and awake even when we feel uncomfortable is much more impressive than doing so in an environment where everything is to our liking. No matter how good we are at controlling our circumstances, there will always be factors and people that we cannot control. How we respond to these experiences to a great degree determines the quality of our lives. The goal of spiritual development is not to learn to control our environment—which is more of an ego-driven desire. And while having some measure of control over our external reality is important, it is when we are confronted with a person or situation that irritates us and we can choose not to react that we know have made progress spiritually. It is when we have mastered our internal reality that we will have become the masters of our lives.
The more we try to eliminate annoyances, instead of learning to handle them gracefully, the further we get from developing the qualities that come with spiritual growth, such as patience, tolerance, and acceptance. It is often in the presence of people and experiences we find annoying that we have an opportunity to develop these qualities. Fortunately for most of us, our lives offer an abundance of opportunities to practice and cultivate these traits.
Paul Begala: CNN political commentator
As President Obama ushers in a new era of good feeling, allow me this potentially discordant note. As we finally stop torturing people, can we please start humiliating sleazeballs? Bring back stocks -- the ancient punishment wherein a criminal's head and hands where placed through a piece of wood, immobilizing them. Bringing back stocks might restore a commodity that's in even shorter supply than hope: Shame. Those who shamelessly and shamefully ripped off our country, bankrupted our economy and tarnished our national identity? They need to be shamed.
Obama Signs Order to Close Guantanamo!! He has pledged to close Gitmo, our "badge of horror" within a year. We are not supposed to be a Communist, Stalinist, backward or medieval nation that has gulags. We are not supposed to torture. "Guards at Guantanamo Bay bragged about beating detainees and described it as common practice," a Marine sergeant said in a sworn statement obtained by The Associated Press — as reported in Rolling Stone.
Finally, we have a president with true Christian principles and moral backbone. Finally we have a leader who does not rule by fear. In this blog, we have written extensively on this issue. Thank God Obama is living up to his moral imperative and our progressive ideals.
Sojourners' founder the Rev. Jim Wallis says: For four decades, I’ve been fighting against all the bad stuff in America—the poverty, the racism, the human rights violations, and always the wars. At a deeper level, the arrogance, self-righteousness, materialism, and ignorance of the rest of the world, the habitual ignoring of the ones that God says we cannot ignore — the downtrodden, the poor, the sick the helpless, the prisoner — the ones Jesus calls "the least of these."
Thank you for joining us in our discussion. Feel free to leave comments on whatever is on your mind. You can vent and bitch here too. Today, aside from Obama's amazing first day in the Oval Office he had to take the Oath again with Justice Roberts.
Here are some rumors going around:
1. Did the Bush administration spy on journalists? Yes, according to Russell Tice, formerly of the NSA
2. Did Rush Limbaugh actually say he hopes Obama will fail? Yes, according to the opiate-riddled puffball himself.
3. Did Caroline Kennedy withdraw her name from consideration as Senator from New York? Yes. I am conflicted about this, but I don't live in New York. What's the real story? If you have some inside scoop, please let us know!
Obama's first day: "We are here as public servants, and public service is a privilege. It's not about advancing your friends or corporate clients (such as the oil industry that will hire you the minute you leave "public service.")
In Washington, though lobbying is the second oldest profession next to prostitution — in the Bush administration, 17 of the 24 Americans took lobbying positions after they left the White House. Bush had people rewriting scientific reports, taking ethics vacations. In Obama's administration there will be full transparency, less executive privilege, no more withholding of "secret" information, and no more conflict of interest for lobbyists. Lobbyists will be subject to stricter limits... "
Transparency and an end to corruption; close our "badge of horror" Gitmo within a year; freeze all midnight laws made by Bush; freeze White House senior staff salaries, and more...
MEDIA REFORM IS OF THE UTMOST URGENCY
This is a new era of enlightenment. And though I don't focus on the negative, we could lose it all if we are not more savvy. And can you believe Rush Limbaugh had the nerve to say he hopes Obama will fail?!! Of course we can!! He's full of hate for his fellow Americans and wants to take the whole country down with him. People on opiates should not be allowed to smear others on the public airwaves. There should be a disclaimer: "Rush Limbaugh is not in his right mind."
There is no liberal media. After 38 years of liberal-bashing talk radio propaganda, do you still wonder why Rush, or Sean Hannity or Bill O'Reilly are so against the Fairness Doctrine, which would stop media monopolies from using the public airwaves to broadcast only one narrow Republican, anti-Democratic ideology?
Do you wonder why they are against the Fairness Doctrine? Well, could it be that they "earn" over 30 million dollars per year, each? They are invested in keeping things biased, hateful, divisive and shocking (shock-jock radio.)
More to come: DID THE BUSH ADMINISTRATION SPY ON JOURNALISTS?
AND NOW.... ANN COULTER STARRING IN ANOTHER HORROR SHOW!