It’s raining and cold. The sky is still streaked pink over toward the coast.  The frog likes it and is singing his special rain song.  That’s a high point, really.

We’re listening to the news about Occupy Oakland today; it’s interesting to note that Oakland is the place where battle lines got physically drawn in a seemingly stark way.  The Partner, in his cheery way, reminded me of when the first, and last, Oakland Police Department helicopter got shot out of the sky in the 70’s.  Another first for Oakland, the City of No Bullshit.  It landed in a parking lot by a taco truck; the man in it survived but OPD didn’t put any more choppers in the sky for a long, long time.  Now, OPD doesn’t respond to burglary calls and other “minor” crimes because they’re afraid they’re really ambushes.  The Alameda County Sheriffs don’t seem to have learned much from the last forty years, either.  Even though policing the world as it isn’t a pretty job, you still have to decide which side you’re on and stick to it.   Either you serve the public, or you don’t, and in the position a Police Officer occupies, it can’t be both ways.  It seemed extraordinarily reckless for them, then, to be so ham handed and violent with the protesters last month when Scott Olsen got critically injured.  Just as they were during the Berkeley riots Way Back When, and in Santa Barbara too.  You can’t shoot at people with real bullets (then) or rubber ones either (now), beat them, tie their wrists behind their backs with plastic cuff ties and let the hands swell up so that in many individuals permanent damage was sustained, and expect to earn respect and cooperation.  Oh, well.  We live in a world that is so highly politicized and stupidly complicated it makes one’s head spin.

Which is why I decided to put a moratorium on listening to news.  I’m hitting the mute button for a few weeks because I just can’t take it anymore.  The obvious tells in the politicians’ speeches and the stock market and the numerous scares and alarums.  A friend remarked to me that since we already know that horrible things are happening all the time, we really don’t need to have the rehash of it on the news.  Even if it IS NPR.  So the new experiment is to focus on, maybe, what amounts to an ongoing prayer, for the highest good of all.  That seems like a good project.


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