June 25th, 2010

breaking bad

Black Death - more thoughts

Last night I posted a few thoughts on Black Death, the new mediaeval horror film. Some reviews have praised it as psychologically astute, and I think the writer does try to express the relationship between suffering, faith, and cruelty, which takes it a little beyond a straight slash and hack film. But I think he has nothing more than a modern educated person's general vague understanding of the Middle Ages. That may or may not matter to you.

All of the dialogue seems quite wrong to me. The relationship between the Christian characters and god seems to be too personal and unmediated, and the hierarchy too informal. It is like the religious experience of a modern Christian. For example Saints are never mentioned, and the lead character prays on his own, directly to god asking for forgiveness and a sign. There are no relics or rosaries. I don't get the feeling of a great chain of authority, with your humble man right at the bottom, and god far away.

The relationship between faith and violence is obviously an important modern issue, and the question of whether faith is tested by resistance to pain is a significant one. But this film does not really explore how that relationship operated in the Middle Ages as an authentic historical period. That doesn't necessarily make it a waste of time, just depending on what you want.
breaking bad

Getting to paytime

Look at charts 2 and 3 here. This is the whole point of Conservatism - everything else is window dressing. The Clause 28 stuff, replaced by new social attitudes, all these are just costumes which are assumed and shed as it suits exigency. Like in America - do educated senior Republicans really disbelieve in evolution - of course not. It's all about getting to pay time.

I just commented on coalescent's blog. There are much worse things than losing an election. Just like there are worse things in a marriage than a divorce.

But lest it seem that I am only all 'boo hoo what about the poor people' (because people might think that's the necessary pain - the sadness they feel). I also say that this is bad, bad economics. It's like medicine based on the theory of the humours - if you survived the blood letting it was no thanks to the doctor.

In a sense this is people believing their own propaganda. They invent a false narrative, and they think they can control it, they think they can propagate it but be outside of it, but eventually it will destroy them.