Re: No Country For Old Men



OK, it's just that I see the non-violence aspect as part of what the "good guys" (so to speak) were pertty much about, although that's is admittedly going from memory. IOW, they might have gotten rowdy ehre an dthere, but they weren't about harming poeple. ALl in all, they were just "doing their thing". SO, yes, it's freedom, but that (IMO at least) includes other things.
It's hard to separate it completely from real life, because the characters and situations were drawn from real life - and any work of art is not only itself, but also, at least art which is also commentary is a part of, an extension of?, the context/culture/times (not sure which word is best) that existed during its creation.
SO, I'm not jsut trying to split hairs for the sake of being annoying, jus putting my ownsnippets "out there" so to speak.

It's not at all a matter of "me not wanting you to say" this or that. I'm exploring some of this as I write, and seking some, what, refeinement of the ideas?, definition? - perhaps better to say "accuraciy" or "rational exploration"...?
Whatever. I just am trying to say that, even at that time, "Middle America" meant "the establishment"/"the herd mentality" *but* not necessarily violence - not that it didn't have its violent sectors of course, and also not to say that the imposition of certain cultural standards couldn't be expereinced (by those imposed-upon) as a form of violence. But the pressure was more like being slowly smothered by ultra-refined bleached white flour - crushed underfoot by boredom, so to speak.
At the same time, one of the lessons, IMO, is that the complacent unthinking herd/establishment type of mindset can too easily descend into mindless, and even casual, violence.
SO no, it's not me "wanting your to say" this or that. I'm trying to establish a more three-dimensional picture, primarily for myself but also for the sake of clarification. Because rebellion, too, has its dangerous extremes.

Well (going off on a bit of a tangent here) and that past is, pathetically (and dangerously, and disgustingly enough) not so much "past" as most people like to think, because the only thing stopping people from starting back in with that sort of horror is their fear of getting caught by "the liberal gummint"...IOW< it's closer to the surface than is often thought...
Maybe more accurate to say "Complacent America"...?

You were going along OK until you interjected that last bit.
First off, one of the dangers of farming - and this is from relatives who actually owned and operated real honest-to-goodness farms (rice and soybeans, in Arkansas) - is poisonous snakes. So, sorry, Edgar, but it's rather common for a farmer to have some sort of firearm with him, if only because of the danger of snakes.
Maybe (but I'm just guessing) a farmer in the West might also be in danger from Cougers or Coyotes, or even Wolves. WHen I lived in SOuth Carolina in the early 80's, I worked with one fellow who had a small farm as a second income, and he had to occasionally shoot feral dogs (abandoned pets - they were just trying to survive, but he couldnt afford to just let them kill his cows). HE was down-to-eartg, non-violent, even tempered - but hey, he had to protect his cows as amatter of economic survival.
That is just plain reality. So, sorry to pop your balloon, but it might very well be that the ol' farmer had a rifle nearby. Also, depending upon just how close to the land he was, and based upon what I've seen here and there, he probably wasn't above popping a squirrel, racoon, or other critter to put into the stew pot. This info comes in part form someone who spent a couple summers as a kid helping pick the cotton - I'm not making that up. My own grandfather never resorted to store-bought meat, and as a kid, I had venison, woodchuck, and who knows what else, when we visited his place. It's an urban, 8not* rural, idea that guns are *always* evil or are *only ever* used for criminal reasons. In many areas, they remain part of one's survival toolkit.
And yeah, that also can be part of freedom - living off the land, rather than depending upon food to be trucked in to you.
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[snipped]

Well, it *is* Texas <g!> Seriously, tho', no, not in the 'burbs. OTOH, that fellow prob was going to actually eat what he hunted, as opposed to people who get all sorts of high-power rifles with super scopes an dinfrared sensors, just to *kill* something (or worst of all, people who pay to have some beast tied up, and then they just saunter up and kill it).

In the 'burbs, it's asafety problem, because most houses would be pierced if ya threw a nail file at them and th epointy end hit. SO shooting off guns would be a huge hazard. OTOH, if someone has 20 or 100 acres, it's far less of a hazard.

Having never been in the situation, I don't know how I'd react. I suspect, tho', that my belly would win out. Even on a prime vegetarian diet, I can't absorb enough B-complex vitamins, so a subsistance one just wouldn't cut it. And I've eaten game before. Also read about how to hang and dress game. I don't necessarily relish the thought, and can't see doing it for sport, but in a survival situation, well, you do what you have to do, and people in such situations usually end up deeply surprising themselves.
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[snip] Kris Said:

Then Kris Said:

You're getting your quotes confused.

That also was one of my statements. IWO, I was agreeing with what I saw as being your point. You're getting all those carrots mixed up ;)
[snip]

I think cuzza they also rode bikes, plus, teh thing about bikes being seen as a free lifestyle, the open road and all of that, which a lot of other people find tthreatening. But i'm only guessing.
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Ok, I hear ya, I understand you point and don't disagree.

I believe that was what I was trying to say, the point of the movie was not about the violence or which one or who was committing it upon whom, but more about "the establishment", and the reasons behind the violence.

Yes your right, that is one thing that can be interpreted fromt he movie, considering they were on the verge of being beaten all along their travels.

I can dig it man :)

Heh you spent the most time going after a wink and a nod joke. There was no ballon to pop :-). Other than that, yeah I get your points, and I guess what Don wrote lead to a decent discussion after all.
--
Edgar



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Heh ;) .
Seriously tho', thinking (albeit very much off the top of my head) about history, it seems that complacency has got to be one of the major enablers of evil...there is that famous quote, if I can get it right, that "IN order for evil to triumph, good men merely have to do nothing" - is that how it goes? ((I have to get a copy of Bartlett's...))
ALthough, thinking about it, it isn't only complacency, but also "omphaloskopsism", self-focus - IOW, esier to do nothing if one stares into one's coffee and doesn't look up to even see a problem.
Both of the above cut across all the lines - race, economic level, social circle, creed, all of it.
[ snip ]

Sometimes jokes lead to serious statements, and sometimes serious statements lead to jokes :o
Humor is a curious thing in that way ;)

Well, looking back, that wasn't the best phrase I could've used :o (and actually, thinking of it, I think the "old saying" is actually "burst one's bubble"...<ahem...>) But the intended gist was the idea of misconception. A lot of people *do* have the misconception that gun equates to bad, but if you're working in the fields, as farmers are wont to do, and a rattler threates you or someone else who's also working there, a .22 rifle is a *good* thing...
OTOH, in the hands of a violent hate-motivated type, pretty much anything is bad news, if it's sharp enough or heavy enough to do damage. Guns make their violence much worse, of course, but, in the end, a gun is only a thing - good or evil rest in the motivations of the person who has the thing.
I guess that's not really related to the movies - or maybe it is related, tangentially. I'm not sure, so I'll leave it at that ;)

And meanwhile, it seems to me that an additional question exists: if the killers at the end of "Easy Rider" were motivated by hatred and fueled by cowardice (I started to type "cowardace" but that'd just be a nervous fish... :o ), what motivates teh character in NCFOM? OR maybe the frightening part is that there is no motivation?
Well, maybe I'll go ahead and see the movie after all ;)
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An amazing one at that...

Submarines, now that's an idea that gives me the willies. Fasciating systems, but actually spend six months in a can hundreds of feet under the ocean? Noooo thank you. I had on section chief who'd been an officer on- board a sub, and he was unflappable - I guess, to survive it, you *have* to be not just cool, but glacial...
Caves fall into the same category for me.
No, thanks...

Which, if a story is really good, is as it should be ;)

For bad movies that are so bad, they're good (well, at least they're good if your mind has been properly warped and mutated!), check this place: http://store.sinistercinema.com/prostores/servlet/Categories?category=DVD
heh heh heh
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Kris Krieger wrote:

Here's about the only "movie" I've watched lately. One of my kids is in the yellow and the other is doing the filming.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LN0LDOW57-w

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Heh, "cool" ;)
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At teh same tiem, it's something I migh ttry, just because - hmm, no short way to say it, but, I'm fascinated (well, OK, maybe obsessed...) with cetacean perception, that whole thing of forming 3D models in their minds via the use of their sonar. That whole "alien world" thing. A weird combination of deep fear, and a near-obsession to understand.
Go figure...

Underwater caves are their own unique class of nnightmare to me; I can't even watch that stuff on TV.
Land caves, well, I *did* go into LuRay Caverns, and was glad for the experience, but once is enough, thank you...

How I remember it is:
stala_C_tites drip from the _C_eiling
stala_G_mites build up from the _G_round
Geology is fascinating, and often beautiful, but caves, er, well, um....
((REmember that MASH episode, where they were being bombed and Hwakeye had to stay at eh mouth of the cave because he was less afraid of the bombs, than of being closed-in...?))

Oh, do! If your brain isn't already totally warped, it will be so after you've seen stuff like "Mesa of Lost Women", "The Brain from Planet Aros", and other such "classics" <LOL!>
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[snip]

You betcha!

heh heh heh
Behold the fearsome awesomenessosity of the Kriegerverse!
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I'd probably be the same way, but at least I'd have help from my vegetarian girlfriend :)
Hmm, I wonder if she can truly be called vegetarian if she cooks meat for me :)
--
Edgar



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Don wrote:

Oh, like everyone hasn't stood with a gun in the road in front of your house. What's the big dead about that.
Our paper runs pictures of the deer when some one drives them down to the paper's office. My friend, the former editor, said the hardest part was having his female employees push the tongue back into the deer's mouth for the picture.
Around here, guns are normal. Camo is everywhere.
Back when I hunted, I always carried a pistol. You don't leave those things laying about. So if you went into a store for a cup of coffee, you always took your pistol. It's no big deal.

Did you hear about the cannibals who were eating a clown. One said, "does this taste funny to you". Sorry, I couldn't resist.

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[edited]

Well, the NG has recently been generally twitchy. But times are generalyl stressful
First, depending upon where, in the northern hemisphere one lives (I have teh inmpression that most posters here are from the northern hemisphere...), construction season is eitehr in progress, or is soon to start. So, given the nature of architecture-related professions, people are eitehr starting new projects, in th emidst of newly-started projects, or looking for projects. Even the good sorts of business are still stresses.
Second, the economy is all wobbly. THat is *very* stressful - housing is problemaatic and investments are problematic (it's of course *far* more complex than that, but I think we all watch the news and know the problems).
THird, if it wasn't obvious before, it's obvious now that Iraq is in a civil war - it migh tbe externally funded, but it's still a civil war. Yet many peopel still use words like "victory" and "success' regarding the US presence there - while conveniently making continual changes to what they want th ewords to mean, because they seem to have th edelusion that NewSpeak is better than jsut saing, "Oy vey, we f***ed up..."
THat related to a fourth stress, elections. People distrust politicians in part *because* they merely twist words, rather than admit to a mistake and then seek a real solution. Elections recently seem to be well- established now as nothing more than choosing the lesser of two evils. Personally, I don't really like any of the candidates' platforms across the board. It seems to me that a lot of peole feel similarly.
Meanwhile, fifth stress, which also, as far as I can gather, is shared by an increasing number (but still a minority) of people that the US is decreasingly a nation, an increasingly a loose collection of special- interest groups, who don't just want to live their own lives as they think is best, but rather, insist upon imposing their own chouices upon everyone's personal lvies - IOW, the populace seems to me to have lost most of their ability to dofferentiate between what is good gfor them personally, and what is good for the nation.
And so on - Afghanistan and the US failure there; the fact taht the current administration has sold out us, an dour kids, and poss. grandkids, to a nation that is rather hostile, so as to fund the mess in Iraq, plus the fact that the production of not only your jeans and your kids' toys, but also, the very medicines we take and the very food we eat, has been turned *wholesale* over to that same nation, because the gov.t is *not* "by the People, for the People", but rather, "by the tiny minority of teh super-rich regardless of whether they got that way illegally/unethically, FOR the tiny minority of the super-rich". Etc, and so on.
Times are stressful. It's *difficult* to even attempt to maintain an even keel, an objective attitude. Which isn't to say in any way that we ought not try - IMO, it's even more important now to try to be voices of reason in *all* things, even the smallest ways, becasue reason is a disappearing commodity...

I certainly can relate tot hat. But we can't choose relatives, and often can't choose whether or not we caer about someone, and it's sad tothink about hose who didn't have the ability (?will?, ?strangth?, ?luck?,...?) to overcome the less-positive influences of all that. OK, that's nto really relevant to a specifc point, but I said it anyway ;)

Life in general is much like that, btu it's dicey, because we're neither pre-programmed, nor completely waht others made us to be, but rather, a combination of both. In a way, it's like pottery - clay is clay, and the potter's hand can only shape clay in accordance with its nature. IOW, we're born with certain areas of potantial, and certain areas of, well, less potantial, and the environment can't change those. At the same time, however, a person who might be predisposed to poor self-control can have that trait made *much* worse by a bad/violent environment and end up becoming akiller, but in a good environment, teh same person might learn better self-control and just grow up to be more aggressive than average, and in the *best* environment, might learn to channel that energy into achievement. Same goes for a talented child - genius can't be destroyed, but it can be warped, distorted, bound.
And then, there are those people who seem to have become acheivers, or criminlas/killers, despite the environment....
THe point is that I don't believe in complete self-determiniation, btu also don't believe in complete passivity. Drugs fall into that category. TO at least some extent, people *can* choose whether to try to be their best, or fall into being their worst. Drugs don't "make" soemone do bad things or good things. It's just like alcohol - some people are "mean drunks" and some are "maudlin drunks" and some jsut sit there with a grin on their face - all that the alcohol does is lower their inhinitions/controls, and in a sense, prove the old saying that "In vino veritas".

I think that's true.

No, just snippets of it when it was on cable (it's not one of the movies they like to show 20 times a week...)

I can relate to that. And in a way, it makes current times even harder, becasue I remember what ti was like when people had the hope taht they *were* expanding liberty and expanding ideals, expanding what it mean to be a Human Being. It all seems to start going downhill in the late 80's. And now, it seems America is regressing through some parallel dark universe.

Heh, interesting. Have to let that one percolate.
[edited]

When foreshawoding is done skillfully, it does just that, registers only subconsciously. IF its blatant, you have no reason to watch th ewhole movie (or read/listen to the whole story) ;)

I don't remember ir as well as do you; I need to see it again ;)
[edited]

THre ya go.
Really, a lot of epople don't seem to be able to differentiate between what they find irritation, and what they feel some need to destroy.
I don't like the racket from morotcycles, to be honest. ANd I was only on one one time (and a small one at that, tho' the ride went through some really bad country roads), and that one time was sufficient for me. btu that's just one aspect of the concept "morocycle". I also have an admiration for someone who *can* just let go of conventionality, and "live free", travel like that and see all the things there are to see.
For a lot of people, tho' it seems that they can only appreciate (if at all) a horse that's bridled-up and hitched to a fancyass carriage, or an eagle if it's in a cage with an explanatory plaque in front, that they can barely glance at while stuffing chili-dogs into their maws.

Here is my theory.
It seems to me that, very often, it's a sort of inverse thing - by which I mean, a person doesn't hate/fear someone who lives free, becasuse he (the hater) *wants* to be free, he hates thsoe other peole because the very concept of freedom threatens his need to control his world, tneed to maintain a rigid world-order, because his (the hater's) Self is not within him, bu tis a function of an external order. OK, that's prob. a but opaque, so think of it like this - if you were stranded on an island, where you'd have lots of food, water, and resources with which you could make shelter, who would you be?
For a lot of poeple, who they are is who other people tell them they are. That is what society/culture teaches us to be. The reason is that this preserves order, because it makes people controllable.
In a sense, true freedom is knwoing that, if you were stranded on an island, you would be exactly who you are, even without mirrors, without other people telling you what is or isn't your "place" in the world.
That's why the origin of hatred is insecurity. A person who is truely himself might get *annoyed* by other people's actions, but he isn't threatened by the mere fact that they are different from him. The person who is himslef/free can celebrate differences, rather than fear them. And that acceptance scares the living daylights out of poeple who are only, or mainly, just what others tell them they are.
I came to these conclusions after decades of first observing others truing, and also myself trying, to be what others said one "should" be, merely because other people said (and I erroneously believed) that it was "duty" to do so, and a "sin" to not do so, and threatened to withdraw all love and approval if their demands were not met. WHat I learned, and many other poeple didn't/couldn't, was tht love is not love if it is used as nothing more than a master's whip, when it is nothing more tan a commodity, a coin, to purchase obeisance. The people who use the whip, the coin, are of course *very* threatened by anyone who does not toe their line, conform their view of what the World Order "should" be - they talk about "freedom", but see it mainly as the "freedom" to choose to be compliant.
True freedom threatens their word order - and thereby, tnot only thier definitions of everyone else, but their definitions of themselves, and their place in the world, as well. To most poeple, IMO, that is the ultimate threat. WHich in turn is why it's so difficult to combat hatred/prejudice - it requires a person to re-examine the deepest crevices/crevasses of the Self, and then rebuild it.
At least, that's my theory ;)

Yup.
I think that any artform, but especially storytelling, is very often (? most often?) that way ;)
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