Anime Wisdom from Susumu Kodai… War is Bullshit.

Episode 24 of the original Space Battleship Yamato was an episode that left it’s impact on me the first time I saw it. Perhaps the most powerful episode of the total 26? The Yamato and her crew made it all the way to the planet Gamilus where they faced off against the oppressive Gamilan Empire. Together our heroes triumphed over these obstacles thus opening the way to freely get to Iscandar to receive the Cosmo Cleaner/Cosmo DNA to revive the war torn Earth. After the battle a quiet pause occurred where we meet up with our protagonist Susumu Kodai. Below is the translated text from the fansub of the climactic scene after the Yamato’s ‘victory’…

Narrator: There was no city left, only the ruins. After such total destruction, nothing made a sound. Nothing moved. Kodai realized that one of the planets in space just died.

Yuki: What have we done? I can’t face God.

Kodai: We’ve been told to compete and win since childhood. During school or at work, we’re expected to compete and win. But there are losers behind the winners. What happens to the losers? The losers don’t have the right to be happy? I never thought about that, until now. I’m sad, and frustrated to realize it so late. The people of Gamilus wanted to immigrate. This planet would’ve dies anyway. There’s no difference between the people of Earth or Gamilus in hoping for happiness. But we fought. We weren’t meant to fight… …we were meant to love each other. Victory…? Bullshit!

No one wins when we lose our humanity in the face of violence.

Anime Wisdom from Quattro Bajeena… I believe in a better tomorrow that is here today.

Quattro Bajeena, or Char Aznable by any other name, and yes there were others, Édouard Mass and even Casval Rem Deikun… Will the real Quattro Bajeena please stand up? And he has. As a central figure to the original Gundam timeline, Quattro, or Char, was at his most humanitarian height in the sequel Mobile Suit Zeta Gundam. It is a shame he fell from grace in terms of being a hero from Zeta Gundam to Char’s Counterattack. His guise as Quattro seemed to have shed anger from the past to move ahead into the future, but this sadly was temporary.

It was a time when he had the awesome hair and swapped the mask like helmet for aviator sunglasses; he was stylin’! That aside, Quattro’s ascension as an individual for change was his climatic speech in the Assembly at Dakar. A speech in which he came out to everyone as Char and issued a call to everyone to rethink what we need to focus on for not the future, but the right now…

I would like to start by asking the forgiveness of the assembly members and all Federation citizens. We mean no disrespect by taking over this meeting. I am Lieutenant Quattro Bajeena of the Anti-Earth Union Group. There is one more thing I must disclose before I say what I came to say. I have another name. I am also the man who was known as Char Aznable. I have come to you today as someone who carries within him the true aspirations of Zeon. Do not think of me as Char of the Principality of Zeon, but rather as the son of Zeon Deikun. Zeon Deikun’s legacy has nothing to do with the evils and hatred of the Zabi family. Zeon Deikun did not build the principality of Zeon! When one sees how the Titans do as they please with the Earth Federation Forces it becomes apparent that they are more depraved then the Zabi family ever was!

Humanity went to space so that the planet would not collapse under the weight of the people on it. Once there, they flourished, expanding their living space as they built more colonies on their own! Unfortunately, their success filled them with hubris and dreams of glory creating evils like the Zabi family! We mustn’t repeat that mistake! Why won’t people understand that moving into space will broaden their horizons!? We believe that humanity should no longer pollute the Earth! But the Titans whose souls are pulled down by gravity think only of ravaging it! Why is it so hard for people to understand? From the dawn of history, mankind has played in this cradle called “Earth.” But now, humanity must leave the nursery behind! Our infancy has come to an end!

Tell me why at this turning point in our history we must fight amongst each other and further pollute the Earth? The Earth should be returned to its natural state and all of humanity must make its home in outer space! Otherwise, Earth will no longer be the planet of water. Even this very city of Dakar is slowly being engulfed by the desert. This is how exhausted the Earth is! Right now, every one of us would like to see the Earth remain alive and beautiful. If we truly feel this way then we should not cling to the Earth as parasites just to fulfill our selfish desires.

The Titans have started a battle disregarding the lives at this assembly. See for yourselves the brutality of the actions they take. They place themselves above the regular Earth Federation Forces and label anyone who opposes them evil doers. But, their own arrogance is the greatest evil; they will be the ruin of humanity! Those of you who were watching the television must realize by now that this is how the Titans go about their business. I admit, it was wrong to take over this assembly, but what of the Titans who were trying to destroy it with the members still inside? Would they even destroy their own supporters?!

There is of course more than one form of pollution. Greenhouse gases are one thing, but fear and negativity are another. I don’t believe we need to leave our beautiful planet, but instead change the way we view the world and ourselves. I see a lot of fear right now, a lot of negativity right now, but a whole lot of potential for creating something beautiful RIGHT NOW! The era of dividing humanity and fulfilling aimless desires we don’t believe in anymore is over. This holds true for both Universal Century 0087 and in our calendar year of 2020. Old corrupt regimes will do what they can to hold onto power by making you afraid, but there are those who are willing to stand up and say, NO! I am a sovereign being and I am one with all my brothers and sisters and we fear nothing that is not real. And you too are a sovereign being and I am willing to shake your hand, give you a hug and say you are my friend. United we all stand.

‘Anime’ Wisdom from Mark Twain… Let’s Talk About Lies.

Now then… I can magically talk about Mark Twain on an anime website because did you know that Mr. Twain, Samuel Langhorne Clemens, was in an anime from 1985? Ever hear of Dagger of Kamui? This is a great ninja, or samurai film that is like an art house presentation posing as a run of the mill shonen fighting movie. The hero, Jiro, once he makes it to the United States meets Mr. Twain. And yes this film is set in the 19th century so it is accurate… well as accurate as anime can be.

So much of what Mark Twain said has meaning even today. Let’s now examine what he said about lies. Now for a personal bias, this is without question my favorite quote of all time, period! I often rhetorically speak it in my everyday affairs to the point I often wonder if it is myself, lol. We shall examine it below with special attention to the bold section…

Figures often beguile me, he wrote, particularly when I have the arranging of them myself; in which case the remark attributed to Disraeli would often apply with justice and force: There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics.

In today’s climate there are so many lies, too many damned lies and a disgusting amount of statistics in our everyday speech and especially in the media. Inspect any fact with a grain of salt, it could be a lie. And the same applies towards any statistic. Have skepticism for any number because they don’t have meaning in and of themselves (except in numerology), but are instead abstract symbols that can be interpreted any number of ways by being products of very clever addition or subtraction.