If the anti-Trump “Resistance” Fought the Nazis

The anti-Trump “Resistance”: what is it? At this point, it’s a bunch of Democrats grousing about Trump’s latest utterances. What an insult to the men and women of actual resistance movements who gave their lives and suffered torture and deprivation.

15 thoughts on “If the anti-Trump “Resistance” Fought the Nazis

  1. Nailed it, Ted. The interesting thing is that if there is one country (in addition to Switzerland) in which a real resistance to a government out of control could be formed, it is the United States, given all the gun worshippers with which the country is infested (I met an elderly version on a commentary thread recently, who, after expressing his support for US military adventures abroad, particularly in the South China Sea, claimed that possession of a firearm was the difference between being a «citizen» and a «subject» – No, to anticipate your question, I doubt that he is a member of a «well regulated Militia»), but instead of resisting the current government, it seems to be encouraging it. It is as if those maquis, instead of saying «Sick.» and «Disgusting.» on viewing the man hanged from the lamppost in the third frame of your cartoon above, were exclaiming «Awesome !» and «Right on !»…

    Henri

    • Forggity woggity
      Those are YOUR people in the ToonThe berets scream Franco-Svensk, and it looks like the superior Norwegian Lutefisk is peaking from the bag.
      What’s lacking are Mime shirts, Jerry Lewis film posters and Granny Macron with a smoke hanging from her mouth leaning against a lamppost as the Franco-Svensk whores did.
      Being Franco-Svensk you must be wounded to the bone from the missing parts. Weeping openly, gnashing your teeth and beating yourself about the head.

      • «Those are YOUR people in the ToonThe berets scream Franco-Svensk, and it looks like the superior Norwegian Lutefisk is peaking from the bag.» Off you meds again, my dear «[Stupid]WizardGlick» ? From my experience as a senior consultant in psychiatry, I suggest that in cases like your own, in which an abysmally low IQ is combined with paranoid delusions, benzodiazepines like Alprazolam hardly suffice for symptom reduction ; rather much stronger medicaments are required….

        Henri

      • Littly fibber flipper flopper
        “From my experience as a senior consultant in psychiatry”

        Yes, I am certain of that. That’s the ticket.
        You also hold the worlds record for Masturbation.
        You have been to the moon in the alien bioship.
        You have healed the wounded with a touch.
        You are the founder of FracoSvensk and use that fact to trade for sexual favors with the ugly Bulgarian whores living in the tent next to you.
        You once blew some guy who resembled David Bowie, but discovered it was an ornamental urinating child statue only after nearly drowning.
        Small children fart at you.
        Old women fart at you.
        Ugly Bulgarians fart on you.
        You enjoy all three.

  2. Where the fuck you all been? I can’t be the ONLY paying attention since I became socially aware around the time I was reading the Illimunitas trilogy and Still life with the Woodpecker..
    Someone during the sixties had a nice little quote about the uptown liberals only act of rebellion was beating off to a picture of a Molotov cocktail.
    Now you fuckers catch on that there is no opposition? There never was an opposition? There never will be an opposition!
    The game is rigged and it is NOT in the genpops favor.
    You want real freedom give up all your shit and walk away naked into the desert until you die. Because even self is a possession.
    You choose to exist in this world you choose to play by their rules.
    You don’t even have dreams they didn’t put into your head.
    I can see the upcoming blah, blah, winge, winge, with every poster attempting to create some insight they consider original and or pertinent.
    Well I just ate all your talkity talk posting those lyrics and quotes.

    If you whistle while you’re pissing, you have two minds, where one is quite sufficient. If you have two minds, you are at war with yourself. If you are at war with yourself, it is easy for an external force to defeat you. This is why Mong-tse wrote. “A man must destroy himself before others can destroy him.”

  3. Love Me, I’m a Liberal
    Phil Ochs

    I cried when they shot Medgar Evers
    Tears ran down my spine
    I cried when they shot Mr. Kennedy
    As though I’d lost a father of mine
    But Malcolm X got what was coming
    He got what he asked for this time
    So love me, love me, love me, I’m a liberal

    I go to civil rights rallies
    And I put down the old D.A.R
    I love Harry and Sidney and Sammy
    I hope every colored boy becomes a star
    But don’t talk about revolution
    That’s going a little bit too far
    So love me, love me, love me, I’m a liberal

    I cheered when Humphrey was chosen
    My faith in the system restored
    I’m glad the commies were thrown out
    Of the A.F.L. C.I.O. board
    I love Puerto Ricans and Negros
    As long as they don’t move next door
    So love me, love me, love me, I’m a liberal

    The people of old Mississippi
    Should all hang their heads in shame
    I can’t understand how their minds work
    What’s the matter don’t they watch Les Crane?
    But if you ask me to bus my children
    I hope the cops take down your name
    So love me, love me, love me, I’m a liberal

    I read New republic and Nation
    I’ve learned to take every view
    You know, I’ve memorized Lerner and Golden
    I feel like I’m almost a Jew
    But when it comes to times like Korea
    There’s no one more red, white and blue
    So love me, love me, love me, I’m a liberal

    I vote for the democratic party
    They want the U.N. to be strong
    I go to all the Pete Seeger concerts
    He sure gets me singing those songs
    I’ll send all the money you ask for
    But don’t ask me to come on along
    So love me, love me, love me, I’m a liberal

    Once I was young and impulsive
    I wore every conceivable pin
    Even went to the socialist meetings
    Learned all the old union hymns
    But I’ve grown older and wiser
    And that’s why I’m turning you in
    So love me, love me, love me, I’m a liberal

  4. It’s Alright, Ma
    Bob Dylan
    Darkness at the break of noon
    Shadows even the silver spoon
    The handmade blade, the child’s balloon
    Eclipses both the sun and moon
    To understand you know too soon
    There is no sense in trying
    Pointed threats, they bluff with scorn
    Suicide remarks are torn
    From the fool’s gold mouthpiece
    The hollow horn plays wasted words
    Proves to warn that he not busy being born
    Is busy dying
    Temptation’s page flies out the door
    You follow, find yourself at war
    Watch waterfalls of pity roar
    You feel to moan but unlike before
    You discover that you’d just be
    One more person crying
    So don’t fear if you hear
    A foreign sound to your ear
    It’s alright, Ma, I’m only sighing
    As some warn victory, some downfall
    Private reasons great or small
    Can be seen in the eyes of those that call
    To make all that should be killed to crawl
    While others say don’t hate nothing at all
    Except hatred
    Disillusioned words like bullets bark
    As human gods aim for their mark
    Made everything from toy guns that spark
    To flesh-colored Christs that glow in the dark
    It’s easy to see without looking too far
    That not much is really sacred
    While preachers preach of evil fates
    Teachers teach that knowledge waits
    Can lead to hundred-dollar plates
    Goodness hides behind its gates
    But even the president of the United States
    Sometimes must have to stand naked
    An’ though the rules of the road have been lodged
    It’s only people’s games that you got to dodge
    And it’s alright, Ma, I can make it
    Advertising signs that con you
    Into thinking you’re the one
    That can do what’s never been done
    That can win what’s never been won
    Meantime life outside goes on
    All around you
    You lose yourself, you reappear
    You suddenly find you got nothing to fear
    Alone you stand with nobody near
    When a trembling distant voice, unclear
    Startles your sleeping ears to hear
    That somebody thinks they really found you
    A question in your nerves is lit
    Yet you know there is no answer fit to satisfy
    Insure you not to quit
    To keep it in your mind and not fergit
    That it is not he or she or them or it
    That you belong to
    Although the masters make the rules
    For the wise men and the fools
    I got nothing, Ma, to live up to
    For them that must obey authority
    That they do not respect in any degree
    Who despise their jobs, their destinies
    Speak jealously of them that are free
    Do what they do just to be nothing more than something they invest in
    While some on principles baptized
    To strict party platform ties
    Social clubs in drag disguise
    Outsiders they can freely criticize
    Tell nothing except who to idolize
    And then say God bless him
    While one who sings with his tongue on fire
    Gargles in the rat race choir
    Bent out of shape from society’s pliers
    Cares not to come up any higher
    But rather get you down in the hole that he’s in
    But I mean no harm nor put fault
    On anyone that lives in a vault
    But it’s alright, Ma, if I can’t please him
    Old lady judges watch people in pairs
    Limited in sex, they dare
    To push fake morals, insult and stare
    While money doesn’t talk, it swears
    Obscenity, who really cares
    Propaganda, all is phony
    While them that defend what they cannot see
    With a killer’s pride, security
    It blows the minds most bitterly
    For them that think death’s honesty
    Won’t fall upon them naturally
    Life sometimes must get lonely
    My eyes collide head-on with stuffed graveyards
    False gods, I scuff
    At pettiness which plays so rough
    Walk upside-down inside handcuffs
    Kick my legs to crash it off
    Say okay, I have had enough
    What else can you show me
    And if my thought-dreams could be seen
    They’d probably put my head in a guillotine
    But it’s alright, Ma, it’s life, and life only

  5. “Amerika v. 6.0 (The Best We Can Do)”

    Look at ya
    Yeah, take a look in the mirror now tell me what you see
    Another satisfied customer in the front of the line for the American dream
    I remember when we was both out on the boulevard
    Talkin’ revolution and singin’ the blues
    Nowadays it’s letters to the editor and cheatin’ on our taxes
    Is the best that we can do
    Come on

    Look around
    There’s doctors down on Wall Street
    Sharpenin’ their scalpels and tryin’ to cut a deal
    Meanwhile, back at the hospital
    We got accountants playin’ God and countin’ out the pills
    Yeah, I know, that sucks – that your HMO
    Ain’t doin’ what you thought it would do
    But everybody’s gotta die sometime and we can’t save everybody
    It’s the best that we can do

    Four score and a hundred and fifty years ago
    Our forefathers made us equal as long as we can pay
    Yeah, well maybe that wasn’t exactly what they was thinkin’
    Version six-point-oh of the American way
    But hey we can just build a great wall around the country club
    To keep the riff-raff out until the slump is through
    Yeah, I realize that ain’t exactly democratic, but it’s either them or us and
    And it’s the best we can do

    Yeah, passionely conservative
    It’s the best we can do

    Conservatively passionate
    It’s the best we can do

    Meanwhile, still thinkin’
    Hey, let’s wage a war on drugs
    It’s the best we can do
    Well, I don’t know about you, but I kinda dig this global warming thing…

  6. And this all started because I tried to hide from society. Remember? ‘Fuck society.’ Yeah, well, I fucked society all right. I reset it to zero, and if I don’t do anything about it, it will continue to grow in this malignant way. And that’s what I’m afraid of the most. This dark future that I set into motion. Who knows what could come from this? What if instead of fighting back, we caved, gave away our privacy for security, exchanged dignity for safety, and traded revolution for repression? What if we choose weakness over strength? They’ll even have us build our own prison. This is what they wanted all along. For us to buy in on our worst selves. And I just made it easier for them. I didn’t start a revolution. I just made us docile enough for the slaughtering. And I can stand here and blame Evil Corp and every other conglomerate out there for taking advantage of us, blame the FBI, NSA, CIA, for letting them get away with this, blame all the world’s leaders for aiding and abetting them, blame Adam Smith for inventing modern-day capitalism in the first fucking place. Blame money for dividing us, blame us for letting it. But none of that’s true. The truth is…I’m the one to blame. I’m the problem. This was my fault. All of it. I did this. Fuck me.
    — Elliot Alderson (Rami Malek), Mr. Robot, season_3.0: eps3.0_power-saver-mode.h

  7. Elliot: Oh, I don’t know. Is it that we collectively thought Steve Jobs was a great man, even when we knew he made billions off the backs of children? Or maybe it’s that it feels like all our heroes are counterfeit? The world itself’s just one big hoax. Spamming each other with our running commentary of bullshit, masquerading as insight, our social media faking as intimacy. Or is it that we voted for this? Not with our rigged elections, but with our things, our property, our money. I’m not saying anything new. We all know why we do this, not because Hunger Games books makes us happy, but because we wanna be sedated. Because it’s painful not to pretend, because we’re cowards. Fuck society.

  8. HHHHHHHHEEEEEEEEEENNNNNNNNNRRRRRRRRIIIIIIII!!!!!!!!!
    French Swedes in berets. The only thing missing is mime shirts.
    Hippity hoppity froggys on his way.

  9. :: heavy sigh ::

    yeah, we have yet to see any real resistance. (Although I’m none to keen on civil wars. They can make you spill your drink and suffer various other indignities.)

    Then again, Herr Hair *is* having a positive effect. There are now more registered Independents in CA than there are Repugnicans (and the Dem “leaders” are sweating non-lethal bullets)

    The Orange One is driving the wedge even deeper into his own party. He’s evaporating off the volatile toxic elements leaving a somewhat less-toxic sludge behind. (and the GOP “leaders” are sweating dum-dums (see what I did there?))

    So maybe we wind up with four parties. The new ones would be energized enough to avoid corruption in the short term – long enough for me to shuffle off this mortal coil before the inevitable decline of civilization.

    • CrazyH

      You truly have no clue do you?
      Tonight watch Snow Piercer the movie.
      Then watch all of Mr. Robot, or the first season of Lie to me or the first season of House of lies, Forbrydelsen, Deep state.
      It’s all placed right in front of us. All we need to do is add it up.
      Because we just don’t give a shit, because talk is cheap and in the end everyone sells out if the price is right. Hell, just for food.
      Before that, there was a fuck load of 70’s movies and books that told everyone what was happening.
      Before that, we had Woody Guthrie and the Blues.
      How far back in History would you like to go so as to understand that the system, all systems, are corrupt and the individual useless.

      ’T is money makes the man; and he who ’s none
      Is counted neither good nor honourable.
      Diogenes Laërtius The Lives and Opinions of Eminent Philosophers (c. 200 A.D.)

      As soon as laws are necessary for men, they are no longer fit for freedom.
      Pythagoras of Samos

      The ‘democracy gap’ in our politics and elections spells a deep sense of powerlessness by people who drop out, do not vote, or listlessly vote for the ‘least worst’ every four years and then wonder why after every cycle the ‘least worst’ gets worse.
      Ralph Nader

      Coping With Democracy

      Fred Reed

      Overcoming The Shame Of Voting

      I guess I need my consciousness raised. The newspapers keep fussing and fidgeting because Americans don’t vote. Something is wrong with us Gringos, they say. We’re shirking. We’re no damn good.

      Huh?

      I look at the last ten or so presidents we’ve had, and think: hooboy, is that what comes of voting? Every one of those reprobates was elected. It’s a historical fact. If we can’t get any better results by voting, I figure we ought to make it a misdemeanor.

      How much faith can you put in a system that, out of 280,000,000 people, comes up with Al Gore? Besides, there’s the question of culpability. If I voted for one reprehensible nonentity in preference to another, and he won, I would reckon that he was my fault. I don’t want a President on my conscience. Further, I do not see how anyone with the slightest self-respect could vote.

      Anyway, you can’t vote for a candidate, because there aren’t any. The apparent existence of candidates is a sleight-of-hand.

      Do you believe that, say, Gore is a candidate? No. He, like any candidate, is a committee consisting of three speechwriters, a gestures coach, two pollsters, a makeup artist, an image consultant, and several crooked advisers. An alleged candidate is a phantasm, a blank slate or, in the case of Al, a mass of unflavored bean curd.

      A candidate is what his advisers tell you he is. Think about it. Often you can read in the Washington Post that the candidate, Senator Palmoil, say, is having image problems. Focus groups have discovered, the writer will explain, that he is seen as Insufficiently Manly, that he is not thought by the voters to be adequately decisive, and that his delivery of a speech is positively Caesarian.

      The paper will announce that his handlers have decided that he needs to Adjust His Image. That is, the principal organ of Washington will announce to all the world that the Senator Palmoil is about to pretend to be something he isn’t. It will also name the advertising agency hired to perform the mummery.

      Sure enough, in his next appearance on television, Palmoil will appear wearing a codpiece. It may have a NOW sticker on it so as not to be threatening to women, and not be excessively protuberant, and perhaps be in an ambiguous beige so as not to be clearly black or white, but it will look no end manly. He will then say Something Decisive, invented for him by the speechwriters and crooked advisers. He will contemplate at the teleprompter with an unblinking pole-axed stare, to communicate firmness, and avoid waving his hands around as if he were swatting bugs.

      For the next week the talking heads of the Yankee Capital will drone about the effectiveness of the candidate’s access of masculinity, about the precise tone of voice in the saying of Something Decisive, and whether the NOW sticker on the codpiece was overkill. In short, the mechanism of deception will be discussed until it collapses into rubble.

      Yet, though detailed in advance, though explained in its every calculated nuance, it will work. The polls will show that, yes, the Merkun People now believe that Senator Palmoil is now of one blood with Clint Eastwood, and that his newly-acquired earnest intonation has satisfied voters of his warm and rich inner life.

      I’m going to vote for that?

      Anyway, you won’t know who you’re electing until after you have elected him. A campaign is intended to hide the candidate, not to reveal him. The truth is that few candidates have the knowledge or experience to run a Shriners’ picnic. Occasionally the veil slips. Recently it was revealed that George the Shrub, son of Bush, didn’t know the names of the leaders of several mildly important countries. Do you believe that any of them do? The candidates usually are provincial governors, men who have spent their lives crawling up the ladder from law school to county chairman. How could they know of the likelihood of a Baluchi irredentist movement or where to find Bishkek?

      Now, the professionals of Washington, the reporters and chattering craniums and mechanics of the image trades, do not see things just this way. They take elections seriously, odd though it may seem. They do not understand that they are hucksters playing an elaborate shell game, yet they carefully shield the scam from public gaze. The rule in journalism is that it is acceptable, indeed career-promoting, to trick the candidate into saying something unwise about abortion. It is not acceptable to show that he knows far less about the world than most of the reporters covering him.

      Note that a news weasel will ask a candidate, “Governor, what is your position on Afghanistan?” The reporter will not ask, “Governor, precisely where is Afghanistan?” The governor will respond to the first question by saying that he favors decency and motherhood, a better life for all Afghans, and human rights for everybody. The response would equally apply to Key Largo or central Illinois. He doesn’t know where Afghanistan is.

      Oddly, keeping the voters from learning that the candidate does know anything (an unlikely circumstance, but it has happened) is as important as concealing that he doesn’t. The voters will resent anyone more intelligent than they are, which we in Washington assume means anyone at all. If a candidate ever mentioned the influence of Sophia of Anhalt-Zerbst as empress of Russia in continuing the policies of modernization of Peter the Great, he would (or so it is feared) lose the election immediately.

      The French will elect a man because he is intelligent and cultured. We want someone we can imagine managing a minor Safeway.

      A crucial point however is that American elections are not about policy, but about the division of spoils-appointments, contracts, invitations to parties at the White House. Sure, Republicans behave slightly differently from Democrats-but only slightly. Which is to say that elections don’t matter.

      The economy determines the fate of this country. Presidents don’t. They are at worst annoyances and embarrassments, at best a sort of national hobby. What counts is Intel, Microsoft, Boeing, Lucent Technologies, Cisco, AT&T, agribusiness, the Internet. We survive on a strong economic back and a weak governmental mind. Always have, always will.

      Vote? Why?

      We have met the enemy and he is us,
      Pogo

    • @wiz:

      Call me Ishmael. Some years ago- never mind how long precisely- having little or no money in my purse, and nothing particular to interest me on shore, I thought I would sail about a little and see the watery part of the world. It is a way I have of driving off the spleen and regulating the circulation. Whenever I find myself growing grim about the mouth; whenever it is a damp, drizzly November in my soul; whenever I find myself involuntarily pausing before coffin warehouses, and bringing up the rear of every funeral I meet; and especially whenever my hypos get such an upper hand of me, that it requires a strong moral principle to prevent me from deliberately stepping into the street, and methodically knocking people’s hats off- then, I account it high time to get to sea as soon as I can. This is my substitute for pistol and ball. With a philosophical flourish Cato throws himself upon his sword; I quietly take to the ship. There is nothing surprising in this. If they but knew it, almost all men in their degree, some time or other, cherish very nearly the same feelings towards the ocean with me.

      There now is your insular city of the Manhattoes, belted round by wharves as Indian isles by coral reefs- commerce surrounds it with her surf. Right and left, the streets take you waterward. Its extreme downtown is the battery, where that noble mole is washed by waves, and cooled by breezes, which a few hours previous were out of sight of land. Look at the crowds of water-gazers there.

      Circumambulate the city of a dreamy Sabbath afternoon. Go from Corlears Hook to Coenties Slip, and from thence, by Whitehall, northward. What do you see?- Posted like silent sentinels all around the town, stand thousands upon thousands of mortal men fixed in ocean reveries. Some leaning against the spiles; some seated upon the pier-heads; some looking over the bulwarks of ships from China; some high aloft in the rigging, as if striving to get a still better seaward peep. But these are all landsmen; of week days pent up in lath and plaster- tied to counters, nailed to benches, clinched to desks. How then is this? Are the green fields gone? What do they here?

      But look! here come more crowds, pacing straight for the water, and seemingly bound for a dive. Strange! Nothing will content them but the extremest limit of the land; loitering under the shady lee of yonder warehouses will not suffice. No. They must get just as nigh the water as they possibly can without falling And there they stand- miles of them- leagues. Inlanders all, they come from lanes and alleys, streets avenues- north, east, south, and west. Yet here they all unite. Tell me, does the magnetic virtue of the needles of the compasses of all those ships attract them thither?

      Once more. Say you are in the country; in some high land of lakes. Take almost any path you please, and ten to one it carries you down in a dale, and leaves you there by a pool in the stream. There is magic in it. Let the most absent-minded of men be plunged in his deepest reveries- stand that man on his legs, set his feet a-going, and he will infallibly lead you to water, if water there be in all that region. Should you ever be athirst in the great American desert, try this experiment, if your caravan happen to be supplied with a metaphysical professor. Yes, as every one knows, meditation and water are wedded for ever.

      But here is an artist. He desires to paint you the dreamiest, shadiest, quietest, most enchanting bit of romantic landscape in all the valley of the Saco. What is the chief element he employs? There stand his trees, each with a hollow trunk, as if a hermit and a crucifix were within; and here sleeps his meadow, and there sleep his cattle; and up from yonder cottage goes a sleepy smoke. Deep into distant woodlands winds a mazy way, reaching to overlapping spurs of mountains bathed in their hill-side blue. But though the picture lies thus tranced, and though this pine-tree shakes down its sighs like leaves upon this shepherd’s head, yet all were vain, unless the shepherd’s eye were fixed upon the magic stream before him. Go visit the Prairies in June, when for scores on scores of miles you wade knee-deep among Tiger-lilies- what is the one charm wanting?- Water- there is not a drop of water there! Were Niagara but a cataract of sand, would you travel your thousand miles to see it? Why did the poor poet of Tennessee, upon suddenly receiving two handfuls of silver, deliberate whether to buy him a coat, which he sadly needed, or invest his money in a pedestrian trip to Rockaway Beach? Why is almost every robust healthy boy with a robust healthy soul in him, at some time or other crazy to go to sea? Why upon your first voyage as a passenger, did you yourself feel such a mystical vibration, when first told that you and your ship were now out of sight of land? Why did the old Persians hold the sea holy? Why did the Greeks give it a separate deity, and own brother of Jove? Surely all this is not without meaning. And still deeper the meaning of that story of Narcissus, who because he could not grasp the tormenting, mild image he saw in the fountain, plunged into it and was drowned. But that same image, we ourselves see in all rivers and oceans. It is the image of the ungraspable phantom of life; and this is the key to it all.

      Now, when I say that I am in the habit of going to sea whenever I begin to grow hazy about the eyes, and begin to be over conscious of my lungs, I do not mean to have it inferred that I ever go to sea as a passenger. For to go as a passenger you must needs have a purse, and a purse is but a rag unless you have something in it. Besides, passengers get sea-sick- grow quarrelsome- don’t sleep of nights- do not enjoy themselves much, as a general thing;- no, I never go as a passenger; nor, though I am something of a salt, do I ever go to sea as a Commodore, or a Captain, or a Cook. I abandon the glory and distinction of such offices to those who like them. For my part, I abominate all honorable respectable toils, trials, and tribulations of every kind whatsoever. It is quite as much as I can do to take care of myself, without taking care of ships, barques, brigs, schooners, and what not. And as for going as cook,- though I confess there is considerable glory in that, a cook being a sort of officer on ship-board- yet, somehow, I never fancied broiling fowls;- though once broiled, judiciously buttered, and judgmatically salted and peppered, there is no one who will speak more respectfully, not to say reverentially, of a broiled fowl than I will. It is out of the idolatrous dotings of the old Egyptians upon broiled ibis and roasted river horse, that you see the mummies of those creatures in their huge bakehouses the pyramids.

      No, when I go to sea, I go as a simple sailor, right before the mast, plumb down into the fore-castle, aloft there to the royal mast-head. True, they rather order me about some, and make me jump from spar to spar, like a grasshopper in a May meadow. And at first, this sort of thing is unpleasant enough. It touches one’s sense of honor, particularly if you come of an old established family in the land, the Van Rensselaers, or Randolphs, or Hardicanutes. And more than all, if just previous to putting your hand into the tar-pot, you have been lording it as a country schoolmaster, making the tallest boys stand in awe of you. The transition is a keen one, I assure you, from a schoolmaster to a sailor, and requires a strong decoction of Seneca and the Stoics to enable you to grin and bear it. But even this wears off in time.

      What of it, if some old hunks of a sea-captain orders me to get a broom and sweep down the decks? What does that indignity amount to, weighed, I mean, in the scales of the New Testament? Do you think the archangel Gabriel thinks anything the less of me, because I promptly and respectfully obey that old hunks in that particular instance? Who ain’t a slave? Tell me that. Well, then, however the old sea-captains may order me about- however they may thump and punch me about, I have the satisfaction of knowing that it is all right; that everybody else is one way or other served in much the same way- either in a physical or metaphysical point of view, that is; and so the universal thump is passed round, and all hands should rub each other’s shoulder-blades, and be content.

      Again, I always go to sea as a sailor, because they make a point of paying me for my trouble, whereas they never pay passengers a single penny that I ever heard of. On the contrary, passengers themselves must pay. And there is all the difference in the world between paying and being paid. The act of paying is perhaps the most uncomfortable infliction that the two orchard thieves entailed upon us. But being paid,- what will compare with it? The urbane activity with which a man receives money is really marvellous, considering that we so earnestly believe money to be the root of all earthly ills, and that on no account can a monied man enter heaven. Ah! how cheerfully we consign ourselves to perdition!

      Finally, I always go to sea as a sailor, because of the wholesome exercise and pure air of the fore-castle deck. For as in this world, head winds are far more prevalent than winds from astern (that is, if you never violate the Pythagorean maxim), so for the most part the Commodore on the quarter-deck gets his atmosphere at second hand from the sailors on the forecastle. He thinks he breathes it first; but not so. In much the same way do the commonalty lead their leaders in many other things, at the same time that the leaders little suspect it. But wherefore it was that after having repeatedly smelt the sea as a merchant sailor, I should now take it into my head to go on a whaling voyage; this the invisible police officer of the Fates, who has the constant surveillance of me, and secretly dogs me, and influences me in some unaccountable way- he can better answer than any one else. And, doubtless, my going on this whaling voyage, formed part of the grand programme of Providence that was drawn up a long time ago. It came in as a sort of brief interlude and solo between more extensive performances. I take it that this part of the bill must have run something like this:

      “Grand Contested Election for the Presidency of the United States.
      “WHALING VOYAGE BY ONE ISHMAEL.”
      “BLOODY BATTLE IN AFFGHANISTAN.”

      Though I cannot tell why it was exactly that those stage managers, the Fates, put me down for this shabby part of a whaling voyage, when others were set down for magnificent parts in high tragedies, and short and easy parts in genteel comedies, and jolly parts in farces- though I cannot tell why this was exactly; yet, now that I recall all the circumstances, I think I can see a little into the springs and motives which being cunningly presented to me under various disguises, induced me to set about performing the part I did, besides cajoling me into the delusion that it was a choice resulting from my own unbiased freewill and discriminating judgment.

      Chief among these motives was the overwhelming idea of the great whale himself. Such a portentous and mysterious monster roused all my curiosity. Then the wild and distant seas where he rolled his island bulk; the undeliverable, nameless perils of the whale; these, with all the attending marvels of a thousand Patagonian sights and sounds, helped to sway me to my wish. With other men, perhaps, such things would not have been inducements; but as for me, I am tormented with an everlasting itch for things remote. I love to sail forbidden seas, and land on barbarous coasts. Not ignoring what is good, I am quick to perceive a horror, and could still be social with it- would they let me- since it is but well to be on friendly terms with all the inmates of the place one lodges in.

      By reason of these things, then, the whaling voyage was welcome; the great flood-gates of the wonder-world swung open, and in the wild conceits that swayed me to my purpose, two and two there floated into my inmost soul, endless processions of the whale, and, mid most of them all, one grand hooded phantom, like a snow hill in the air.

      • For “desertion, dereliction of duty, insubordination, brutality, [and] disrespect,” he sentences Hickey and the two men who’d gone with him to 12 lashes each. When Hickey keeps mouthing off, Crozier ups it to 30 lashes, “as a boy.” For those of us not versed in 19th-century punishment lingo, what this means is that Hickey is to be lashed across his rear rather than across his back. It’s not a sentence that bodes well, especially as the mood among the crew shifts when Hickey’s lashing starts to draw blood, some of which spatters on the gathered men.

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