l o v e

“Love is the voice under all silences, the hope which has no opposite in fear; the strength so strong mere force is feebleness: the truth more first than sun, more last than star…”

– E.E. Cummings

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i c e l a n d

I believe the best way to become good at something is to find good examples. Model your attempts after the successes of others. This saves you from wasting time with common mistakes. When i wanted to learn to trade on the FOREX i devoured everything i could. I found the best traders, and copied their methods. I still had problems, sure, but i turned a decade long trial-and-error battle into an eight month education. If a country wishes to do well, then i believe you should look to what other countries have done right.

Iceland isn’t the only way to do this. But it worked. It’s worth researching, worth studying, and certainly worth attempting to improve upon. I would urge all looking at an independent Scotland to take notice and bring this information to your debates and discussions.

Originally from the brilliant Bella Caledonia, nearly three years ago:

WHY ICELAND SHOULD BE IN THE NEWS BUT IS NOT

As one European country after another fails or risks failing, imperiling the Euro, with repercussions for the entire world, the last thing the powers that be want is for Iceland to become an example. Here’s why:

Five years of a pure neo-liberal regime had made Iceland, (population 320 thousand, no army), one of the richest countries in the world. In 2003 all the country’s banks were privatized, and in an effort to attract foreign investors, they offered on-line banking whose minimal costs allowed them to offer relatively high rates of return. The accounts, called IceSave, attracted many English and Dutch small investors. But as investments grew, so did the banks’ foreign debt. In 2003 Iceland’s debt was equal to 200 times its GNP, but in 2007, it was 900 percent. The 2008 world financial crisis was the coup de grace. The three main Icelandic banks, Landbanki, Kapthing and Glitnir, went belly up and were nationalized, while the Kroner lost 85% of its value with respect to the Euro. At the end of the year Iceland declared bankruptcy.

Contrary to what could be expected, the crisis resulted in Icelanders recovering their sovereign rights, through a process of direct participatory democracy that eventually led to a new Constitution. But only after much pain…

(full article in link)

r e v e l a t i o n

In a vale of light and laughter,
Shining ’neath the friendly sun,
Where fulfilment follow’d after
Ev’ry hope or dream begun;
Where an Aidenn gay and glorious,
Beckon’d down the winsome way;
There my soul, o’er pain victorious,
Laugh’d and lingered—yesterday.

Green and narrow was my valley,
Temper’d with a verdant shade;
Sun-deck’d brooklets musically
Sparkled thro’ each glorious glade;
And at night the stars serenely
Glow’d betwixt the boughs o’erhead,
While Astarte, calm and queenly,
Floods of fairy radiance shed.

There amid the tinted bowers,
Raptur’d with the opiate spell
Of the grasses, ferns, and flowers,
Poppy, phlox and pimpernel,
Long I lay, entranc’d and dreaming,
Pleas’d with Nature’s bounteous store,
Till I mark’d the shaded gleaming
Of the sky, and yearn’d for more.

Eagerly the branches tearing,
Clear’d I all the space above,
Till the bolder gaze, high faring,
Scann’d the naked skies of Jove;
Deeps unguess’d now shone before me,
Splendid beam’d the solar car;
Wings of fervid fancy bore me
Out beyond the farthest star.

Reaching, gasping, wishing, longing
For the pageant brought to sight,
Vain I watch’d the gold orbs thronging
Round celestial poles of light.
Madly on a moonbeam ladder
Heav’n’s abyss I sought to scale,
Ever wiser, ever sadder,
As the fruitless task would fail.

Then, with futile striving sated,
Veer’d my soul to earth again,
Well content that I was fated
For a fair, yet low domain;
Pleasing thoughts of glad tomorrows,
Like the blissful moments past,
Lull’d to rest my transient sorrows,
Still’d my godless greed at last.

But my downward glance, returning,
Shrank in fright from what it spy’d;
Slopes in hideous torment burning,
Terror in the brooklet’s tide:
For the dell, of shade denuded
By my desecrating hand,
’Neath the bare sky blaz’d and brooded
As a lost, accursed land.

~ H.P. Lovecraft

s t a r s

Thy feet in mire, thine head in murk,
O man, how piteous thy plight,
The doubts that daunt, the ills that irk,
Thou hast nor wit nor will to fight —
How hope in heart, or worth in work?
No star in sight!

Thy Gods proved puppets of the priest.
“Truth? All’s relation!” science sighed.
In bondage with thy brother beast,
Love tortured thee, as Love’s hope died
And Love’s faith rotted. Life no least
Dim star descried.

Thy cringing carrion cowered and crawled
To find itself a chance-cast clod
Whose Pain was purposeless; appalled
That aimless accident thus trod
Its agony, that void skies sprawled
On the vain sod!

All souls eternally exist,
Each individual, ultimate
Perfect – each makes itself a mist
Of mind and flesh to celebrate
With some twin mask their tender tryst
Insatiate.

Some drunkards, doting on the dream,
Despair that it should die, mistake
Themselves for their own shadow-scheme.
One star can summon them to wake
To self; star-souls serene that gleam
On life’s calm lake.

That shall end never that began.
All things endure because they are.
Do what thou wilt, for every man
And every woman is a star.
Pan is not dead; he liveth, Pan!
Break down the bar!

To man I come, the number of
A man my number, Lion of Light;
I am The Beast whose Law is Love.
Love under will, his royal right —
Behold within, and not above,
One star in sight!

~ Aleister Crowley