Friday, June 22, 2012

Blog 21 Midsummer New Year of Johns Eve 2012

Life at the Beginning.
The Johns Days are an interesting time to cast a panoramic eye over the landscape—both in Latvia and the rest of the world--and observe what the Latvian media projects concerning the condition of Latvian identity.
From a cynic’s point of view, what you see is what you get. And what you get is what advertisers wish you to see. The Police advertise caution and self-control when it comes to the use of alcohol. The beer companies intensify their advertising campaigns to increase beer consumption.
The Riga City Gallery opens a show of Baltic women’s head pieces, crowns, but offers no explanation of the significance of this object—as if women in the European East wore these every day. Indeed, the crowns are likely representations of how Baltic women once visualized their chief Goddesses: Saule, Laima, Mara, and Dekla. Of the four, nothing is known about Dekla. Except for the Sun Goddess, the names of the other Goddesses cannot be translated into English, but may mean, in a collective sense, “Dearest Goddess”  Given that Dekla is forgotten, one may venture to guess that her name is related to the Latvian words: dēka, dēkotājs—an adventure, an adventurer. Perhaps Dekla was a proto-Latvian Crazy Jane, who also could not stay put, and, more than likely, was involved in witchcraft and eating Fly Agaric , the mushroom that urbanites not knowing it to be lethal would like to eat because it is “pretty”.
On the political front, the unexpected resignation of the Minister of Justice surprised almost everyone.
Gaidis Berziņš mentions the issue of returning private property to the Hebrew community as the reason for his resignation. The minister belongs to the Latvian nationalist party (Visu Latvijai), and is of the Nationalist Coalition. Contrary to Berzins’ and the Coalition’s position, the Prime Minister Dombrovskis (Vienotiba) has given instructions for the minister to draw up a list of properties to be returned. One commentator (Ozolins of “Ir” magazine) calls Berzins a minister, who has jumped aboard a train to a place called an “anti-Semitic fundamentalist zoo” by way of another “golden bridge” project by Latvian oligarchs. is featuring an article by Janis Brizga. The article reports on the goals and dreams of the NAP [National Development (attīstības) Plan]. From this blogger’s point of view, the goal of raising the growth quotient in Latvia  to 5% by 2020 is not only unrealistic, but given the ecological exhaustion of our planet, capacity to overproduce by developed nations, a financial and economic crisis just at its beginning, and the abundance of workers in China who receive 40 x less  income than the workers in the U.S., is frankly, absurd.
So much for the isolationist and cosmopolitan views of Latvians today. The teeth of the wheels do not mesh, but grind and squeal.
This blogger has always stood on the sidelines of the political factions, because he has not found any of them to be single minded enough to put the economic and community development in Latvia as their foremost goal. If they have thought of it, it is soon put aside, because to realize it will take sacrifice.
Of neither a capitalist, communist, technocrat, or traditional traditionalist mindset, my position has always been one to seek for ways to transform the consequences of said to create a self-sustaining community within a recovering ecological system. I have been in enough forests in my day not to believe that a plantation forest makes for “more forests in Latvia than ever in recent times”.
Among the tools to the end of achieving a recovery for the Latvian people, I perceive a necessity to return to the “sacred”. I take this position in spite of the fact that the self-sacrifice of Adolfs Buķis continues to go unacknowledged. All the same, 1993 marks the year when the government of Latvia turned away from any notions of self-sacrifice, thus keeping religion and politics divided as per the crusading notions of princeling fascists a la West.]
Because the origin of the Festival of Johns is from the realm of the sacred, as well as a celebration of nature, which is diametrically opposed to the plague of our times—urbanist naiveté, I prefer to live among the trees of a forest rather than little boxes made of ticky tacky.
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