?

Log in

No account? Create an account

Previous Entry | Next Entry

The Real Reason I Want to Live Forever

The Financial Times has a remarkable interview with Henry Kissinger this morning that through some kind of magic, I managed to access even though it’s behind a paywall.

Jean-Luc used to tell me Kissinger was the Metternich of our age, and you could really see that in this interview. The breadth and depth of Kissinger’s understanding is remarkable; he sees things in a geopolitical dimension. What Kissinger thinks is important about events taking place now is what historians will think is important when they study this era 100 years hence.

“I think Trump may be one of those figures in history who appears from time to time to mark the end of an era and to force it to give up its old pretenses,” Kissinger notes.

And goes on to observe that such figures need not be acting intentionally.

So could Trump be shocking the rest of the west to stand on its own feet? the interviewer asks.

“It would be ironic if that emerged out of the Trump era,” Kissinger replies. “But it is not impossible.”

Unless the current world order rearranges itself somehow, Kissinger thinks Europe is on track for being absorbed completely into some kind of mega-Eurasian entity while China revives its Middle Kingdom eminence. In this scenario, the U.S. becomes a large, backwards, irrelevant island, and Russia stands alone.

“The mistake NATO has made is to think that there is a sort of historic evolution that will march across Eurasia and not to understand that somewhere on that march it will encounter something very different to a Westphalian [western idea of a state] entity. And for Russia this is a challenge to its identity.”

Kissinger concluded with a very intriguing observation about Vladimir Putin: “I do not think Putin is a character like Hitler. He comes out of Dostoyevsky.”

###

The real reason why I want to live forever is that I’m so, so curious about what comes next!

###

I spent most of yesterday in a low-grade panic attack, worried about money (I am spending more than I am making), worried about health (what if my knee never gets better?)

I’ve decided to replace my bed—the mattress is old; the damage it’s doing to my back may be a contributory factor to the stuff with my knee. That meant I had to make an action plan: Exactly how did I plan to move 100+ pounds of old mattress cum bed springs anyhow? Exactly how did I plan to assemble the sleek, new steel slat bed frame, which is supposed to be an ideal solution for “average weight” people. (Am I an “average weight” person?)

I hate doing this kind of contingency planning.

The weather is wonky. We’re living in the tropics! It’s monsoon season! The air is so thick with humidity that even when it’s not raining, one feels as though one is displacing one’s own weight in water as one pushes through it.

In the afternoon, I ambulated slowly, ceremonially, around the grounds of the FDR Presidential Library.

The FDR gravesite itself is in the middle of a rather lovely garden:



FDR and Eleanor are my own personal Lares and Penates, so I did a tiny appeasement ceremony in front of the white monolith that serves as their grave marker.

Okay, I’ve scratched your metaphysical backs! Now do something for me! I thought and proceeded to hit the Roosevelts up with a long list of wishes, chief among which was Make me rich beyond my wildest dreams of avarice but don’t let anything bad happen to me, my kids, or my cats! (Hey! I’ve read The Monkey’s Paw; I know how that shit works.)

If the Roosevelts want any more sacrificial cucumbers from me, they better come through!

###

Still futzing with the story.

A thing that almost always happens to me is that I’ll start scribbling stuff that doesn’t seem to be integrated into the story in any way. Readers won’t know that, of course. But I actually have to wait until I forget the process of writing the story, of cramming all that irrelevant stuff into it, before I can assess what I've written with any degree of objectivity. Before that, I always read everything I write with this mounting sense of, OmyGAWD, this is not what I wanted to write at all. This sucks.

So, right now, the story sucks.

This entry was originally posted at http://mallorys-camera.dreamwidth.org. You may leave comments on either Dreamwidth or LiveJournal if you like.

Comments

( 9 comments — Leave a comment )
mexpatriot
Jul. 24th, 2018 04:34 am (UTC)
Kissinger is brilliant! However, he should be tortured and killed very slowly in some horrible way. He has done too much bad shit that it would be hard to even count his offenses to the world.
mallorys_camera
Jul. 24th, 2018 04:40 am (UTC)
Yes, that is undoubtedly true.

But wow! The guy has an amazing brain.
mexpatriot
Jul. 24th, 2018 04:46 am (UTC)
He is fully from the German tradition of Realpolitik, geopolitics (Karl Haushofer, et al.), like the Nazis. I mean, he's a Jewish Nazi (but for hire, without ideology) in nearly every sense.
mallorys_camera
Jul. 24th, 2018 04:57 am (UTC)
Right. An agenda, but no ideology. He reminds me a bit of the psychohistorians in Asimov's Foundations Trilogy.

Of course, I always wanted to be a psychohistorian.
mexpatriot
Jul. 25th, 2018 03:55 am (UTC)
Asimov was always too Sci-Fi for me, too nerdy,...too much science stuff.

I am probably a Psychohistorian.
mallorys_camera
Jul. 25th, 2018 03:03 pm (UTC)
You don't like science stuff? :-)

The Foundation Trilogy wasn't very science-y, I seem to recall. Haven't reread it in years, and don't have any desire to. But it was a huge influence on me at one point in my life.
mexpatriot
Jul. 26th, 2018 05:06 am (UTC)
I generally (aside from the cover art) dislike Sci-Fi/Fantasy fiction. I always find it lacking. My own immagination is so much greater! So, I roll my eyes and I am bored. PKD is a rare exception, though even he lets me down a lot.

I've said this before. I love the French Nouvelle Roman and Austrian Post-modern.

Peter Handke, Allain Robbe-Grillet, Karl Hans Artmann, and Thomas Bernhard do it fo me.
sulphuroxide
Jul. 24th, 2018 08:37 am (UTC)
Your writing exercise is essentially what I was taught in college. The method my teachers pushed is essentially automated writing (writing by constraints or automation) in order to trick subconscious threads to emerge.... which the brainstormer was actually key in bringing to the American avant garde about 20 years ago in the form of the oulipo. I guess being from the USSR he had wider exposure than most of us Americans.

Anyway you have an interesting mind.
mallorys_camera
Jul. 24th, 2018 08:40 pm (UTC)
It's not quite automatic writing, though I catch your general drift. :-) For me, there's always the tension between the Outline and what I happen to be preoccupied with on any given day. :-)

Nice to see you! Hope all is well.
( 9 comments — Leave a comment )