Friday, December 17, 2010

Citizens United- Corporations Become Self-Aware

Today we live in a world where you and I are a resource to be mined. We are no more than coal, or petroleum taken from the ground. Through the power of corporations and the ultra wealthy who own them; we can be made to pay any fees, suffer any penalty, made to buy products and services from businesses which have corrupted the election system and perverted democracy.

Through this corruption the executive class now owns the federal and state governments. They use the power of the government to enforce upon common working people things such as insurance requirements which can only be met, legally by for-profit corporations, what’s more insidious is the fleecing of citizens through exploitation of the airwaves, the water sources, the natural resources like timber and almost every other measure of wealth on the planet.

They take these resources from us the people, and then are allowed to sell these resources back to us at a high price. Such as the way the FCC has given away our airwaves and satellite permits.

The Corporate interests have scored a huge victory this past January. In the Decision: “Citizens United Vs. Federal Election Commission” the U.S. Supreme Court has given the Corporation the same rights as a living breathing person, and can be allowed to use as much of their wealth and power exercising their free speech rights by supporting candidates and issues in U.S. Elections.

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Sunday, December 5, 2010

You're Already Out.

Every now and then I have remind myself that the internet is a data stream that I am already in. Even if I tried to keep myself anonymous, I could not actually be anonymous. You can't be hidden. There is nowhere that you can have no register of yourself. The stores you use have data in which you are listed. You're on the reports of sales registers, card-swipe readers. Security cameras contain recordings of you, both audio and visual. So where is there to try to hide? Where can one be anonymous?
I have railed at the injustice of using the "Sacred Anonymous" in the service of political backbiting. One of the most revered authors in the western monastic tradition is Anonymous. Being anonymous is having humility.
Anonymity should be reserved for those who would be persecuted for exposing crimes of their superiors who are actually in a position to retaliate. I'm totally for protecting the anonymity of whistle-blowers. And inside sources. But that really isn't the case with much of the blog-splotter being thrown around. With so much casual anonymity, it's too easy to speak so much "for" and "against" people, regular common people who are known. But, the speakers are unknown.
Also, our computers are like our fingerprints, we have so many interchanges with other computers giving our URL's to sites we don't even know. So we can only be anonymous to our peers, while those with power can identify us at will.
And finally, it's just sad that so many smart, literate people are afraid to just be themselves. To actually own the words coming from their minds. In the new-millennium, all of us have been "outed" on the internet.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Friday, November 19, 2010

This is one of the drawings from my CR Art class. I’ve so enjoyed getting back to the basics of drawing in charcoal and graphite. I look forward those mornings when my dedicated classmates and I tackle some new artistic adventure created by our talented Professor Smith.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Why I Support "The Plazoid."

It is my position that we need more people like “The Plazoid”. I feel that even in my own writing I am too circumspect. Why? Am I going to get sued? Probably not, I’m not worth the attorney’s fees. So why do I self-censor? I think it’s because I live in a society where we’ve been taught to self-censor as a matter of survival. You don’t know what kind of nutcase you might anger. You don’t know who is reading your thoughts and there are people out there who think they’re tough-guys.
Tad (the blog’s editor.) and I have many things we don’t agree on. But hey, when you deal with prophets and activists; you should expect a little friction. Prophets are not like regular people. We edit ourselves at all times. We go over our writings to see if it comes across well, is there something that might be too offensive in tone? Did it seem like I was attacking the person instead of attacking the person’s stance on a particular subject? We will go over this writing before we publish. But, activists like Tad, are not so inclined.
The Tads of this world are not held by such conventions. The Plazoid can write his rants and right his wrongs as he sees fit. And more power to him. I know that in Tads lexicon my wife and I are probably: “Poverty-Pimps.” But that’s OK, He’s looking at it from the point of view of a person on the other side of the desk from a Social Worker. Maybe the Social Worker has a nice car, and good clothes. I’ve seen a social worker (Managerial level) decked out in diamonds. Now that is something the Plazoid can sink his teeth into. But, just like in my church; you have the priests dressed in Ermine, and you have priests dressed in rags. Some priests are in league with the dictators, and some priests are in league with the peasants. In the Catholic church, we have both. So it is in the Human Services departments. Honestly though, most social workers have more in common with their clients than they do with their bosses. But that is not always apparent to the clients.
I’ve never met Tad. I’m not a relation, or friend. I guess maybe I am a friend; in theory. I do respect the guy. And I am not blind to his abrasive tactics. But it is a “what you see; is what you get” kind of thing. And that kind of thing is sorely lacking these days.
I don’t know about “Love Eternal.” So I’ll just say: Hang in there, Man.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Neolithic Opinions

It’s all just opinion. Blogs are full of opinions. Some bloggers are very conscientious and will provide researched information. Of course some blogs are pure information sites. But in my experience most personal non-commercial blogs are pure opinion.
I’m not saying this is a bad thing. What else is there in communication beyond the necessary, but opinion? After we’ve given each other all the information we need to accomplish whatever task is at hand, there is nothing left but the telling of our thoughts on things.
This was probably true in the Neolithic times. Tug and Ug must have had a lot to say about things in their environment. There were tigers to worry about. Plum harvests, mating dances. Because they were also human, they shared opinions.
Are we any different now than we were then? What has really deeply changed in us? Nothing much, I believe. We have larger brains, but we see smaller brains in child protégés out-perform larger brains. So is that enough of a physical difference to give us a radical emotional difference?
When I am in the forest, away from the road; when there are no sounds from planes, I often think about my link to ancient humans. I am walking through a natural landscape, as they did. I am thinking of something my son had done, and also about the house, and whether it will withstand another winter before I redo the roof. A man living in the Neolithic time could easily have had those same thoughts. He could have the same worries, the same joys. How am I so different? I can’t put much importance on the gadgets I have, that he didn’t have.
I think it’s possible that just like me, Tug or Ug could be watching their people gathering up in groups and getting all excited about something. See them pick one of their own and put him in charge. Suddenly Ug and Tug’s tribe is telling everyone what to do. They’re making rules for Tug’s people, and different rules for Ug’s people; and those who were put in charge are not bound by either set of rules.
Even in the days of Cave Bears, and Saber-toothed Tigers; groups of people have looked up to the strong to provide, out of fear of their own weakness. They became detached from the self-sufficiency of their own action, and depended entirely on the sufficiency of those they appointed their leaders.
Tug and Ug were perhaps like a lot of people I know. Not entirely dependent on the society, but not entirely independent of it either; kind of an interdependency I guess. It’ the people in this category that end up in society’s prisons or society’s wars. Too strong to be left alone, too weak to be in charge of their own destiny.

Friday, June 11, 2010


Greed is the father of all sin. That statement is not in quotation marks. I’m sure that with a little research I could find a Bhuddist, or communist activist sharing this sentiment. I believe it to be a true statement. An all encompassing statement of fact: Greed is the father of all sin.

In the wisdom traditions, the mythology of conflict has universally been born of another’s greed. In the mythic scenario of brother against brother, whether it is Cain and Able or Set and Osiris; it is the greed of the impatient brother who brings murder. Murder is born of greed. Can one separate the human force of anger and rage, from the greedy act of indulging that anger and rage? Only through greed can the murderer kill. He must take to himself all of the decision-making authority usually reserved to the wisdom of Nature and our “Supreme Being.”

The division of human beings into the classes of hunters and farmers can also be seen in terms of greed. If we look at the activities themselves it becomes clear that the “Hunters” are expressing greed. That is to say that the instinct for survival will cause greedy behavior. If it didn’t, the hunter would die of starvation before he felt entitled to end the life of a fellow creature, which he had no hand in creating. I believe this is where it question of greed as the prime motivator in life begins. If we apply the term greed to self-preservation then the desire for life itself is tarnished as something bad. But is we see greed as linked, inextricably to the basic desire for survival; then we begin to see how greed can expand and occupy the whole of an individual’s motivations.

This brings us to the Farmer mentality. For the sake of contrast; let’s say the farmer is expressing patience. let’s paint the farmer’s reality as one who is not seeking to grab fast what he can, but using intelligence he is looking into the future and contemplating it. He is keeping track of the heavenly events. He is using is mind. Greed in this case is not in the act of sustaining survival, but may exist in the long term gathering of abundance.

More to come…….

Tuesday, April 20, 2010


May this post find you all in good health and spirits. I had a wonderful experience today fulfilling an assignment for my biology class at College of the redwoods in Eureka, CA. The assignment: to take a hike and observe various life forms and gather data on their Genus, Phylum and Sub-phylum information.
I am very fortunate that I am surrounded by nature. The Six Rivers Forest stretches out for miles and miles. I was writing information on Madrone trees, Oak trees and Douglas fir, when I saw the most interesting worm I've ever seen. I have named this worm: "Wormzilla." Wormzilla has markings similar to a king snake. It has a reddish head, and its body is pale white with black/gray patterning on it. If anyone knows what this worm is really called I'd love to know.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Ah, The Beauty of New Clairvaux...

I've just returned from a retreat at the Abbey of New Clairvaux in Vina, California. It is a place I go to remember who I am.Click onto the link to view more pictures from New Clairvaux Monastery.Sacred Stones