Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas everyone!

I'm leaving on a jet plane today.

Big up to all the people alive on planet Earth right now. Wow! Here we all are, living to see another day and live and exist and struggle and survive and yes, enjoy! Some of us have received a lot of loot, and others not so much, but we're all here and its a miracle to be alive and well in the early 21st century in proto-fascist America.
One Love to the people of Earth!
Lets get together and feel alright.
The people united is what we need.
Imagine no countries, it isn't hard to do.
We're all family and loved ones, the killing must stop.
Peace on Earth and goodwill toward All
What do these words mean? We hear them year after year but honestly, lets try and be objective about this, is there any more Peace on Earth now than before? C'mon people.
If we really want Peace on Earth and if we have real Goodwill to all, then things have got to change. We can't keep doing what we've been doing. Sacrifices will probably be necessary. But as I've learned this year, its not the end of the world to wake up alone on Christmas morning and not have any tree or gifts or decorations or anything of significance at all, except the abundant life I already enjoy, of course. relatively speaking.
I love everyone, even Vice President Cheney. Though we've joked about it, I'm pretty sure the evidence suggests he's still a human being and that is sufficient for God's love, so who am I to judge? I sometimes think he's the devil but now we're just getting ridiculous. Or are we?...
Regarding the Christ in Christmas, happy birthday Jesus, I think, or is it really some other day? We might never know. unless you tell us.
Jesus was the man! if I am to believe the evidence, Jesus Christ was a superstar, forreal. He could turn water into wine! He could walk on water in a storm! He raised the dead. etc. etc. So he must be the Son of God and I must believe that and wait, rewind. Jesus preached the message of One Love, unity of humanity, even the lowliest. We're all family and we should live as such. not just around winter solstice but all the time.

I'm tired of the status quo, lets get together and figure something out.

There's a huge warehouse behind the Co-op for sale. Lets make it a recycling center. Lets have a worker owned business model and do it right. This sector of the economy should continue growing. There's going to be a flood of cathode ray tube t.v.s in the waste stream in the coming years, we should be ready to process them safely and effectively.

Lets stop being so focused on our own survival and do something together. That's what I really want to say.

Merry Christmas everyone!

Saturday, December 22, 2007

The Lives of Others

The Lives of Others is a great movie. When I picked it up I thought it might be too dark, but for some reason I went ahead and rented it. I'd heard something about it on the radio, too.

At any rate, I highly recommend watching this movie.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

I stand by Ralph Nader

did anyone watch Independent Lens on OPB (PBS) tonight?

It was the documentary on Ralph Nader my hero and role model.

They gave ample air time to the cry babies who blame Nader for costing the Democrats the White House in 00 and 04. But of course I'm not convinced. Two words: Greg Palast. Here's another great American who has documented election irregularities both in 00 and 04. Its all those sorry sorts who fail to imagine the possibilities, dismiss hope as unrealistic, settlers for lesser evils, who are the problem. All the sorry asses who secretly love Kucinich now but have pre-emptively quashed any hope, even their own, for no good reason at all, these are the problem with America. We need to stand on our convictions people. Don't settle for whoever the establishment picks for you. Do your homework and follow your heart. That's the only way to a better world.

Gore should've won a Nobel prize for folding an election that he actually won.

Speaking of Gore and his Nobel, correct me if I'm wrong, wasn't he the US delegate who failed to sign Kyoto? Or was that something in Brazil? Don't get me wrong, I think its good that even at this late stage Gore has done much to raise the level of concern for global climate change, but Nader is the real hero and I challenge you to make me hear otherwise.

Monday, December 17, 2007

achmed the dead terrorist

This guy is pretty funny.

Thanks for the link Chris!

Sunday, December 16, 2007

another photo


beauty lives.

Kevin Martin and the FCC

Some of you might be aware that the FCC (actually the Republican majority on the FCC) is moving bullheadedly towards changing ownership rules to allow newspapers to own broadcast media. I believe the actual day is this Tues. Let me tell you, nothing raised my ire like seeing Chairman Martin sit there before a Congressional committee and brazenly stand for the media conglomerates in the face of overwhelming public opposition and outcry. See Bill Moyers Journal (must see tv I) this week.

I mean, there isn't even a pretense of acting on behalf of the People by this guy. Its so blatantly kowtowing to the corporations, right in the face of all those people who were suckered into thinking public hearings meant something. His decision was made up months in advance. The public hearings were window dressing, nothing more.

It reminded me of the city council meeting where overwhelming public testimony opposing the Witham Oaks development was dismissed wholesale, even by two Green party members. Something tells me the same thing will happen with the BLM and the decision to allow for more old growth logging. I'm sure its the same thing with the LNG plant approved for Coos Bay. Indeed, unless you are some big money, big time player/stakeholder in the decision, your voice doesn't amount to a pile of horse shit.

But that doesn't mean we should throw in the towel. It clearly demonstrates the necessity for greater organization and coordination among the forces for good. We have everything against us. The market economy provides a direct disincentive to work for the common good. You have to have an extraordinary level of self sacrifice and altruism to do what is right in today's world. But countless warriors we nevertheless are. Just dilute and dispersed among countless non-profits and ad hoc organizations. or paralyzed within traditional jobs, where quite often doing the right thing will get you fired in a heartbeat.

In Jerry Mander's Manifesto, he talks about powering down, consuming less in over-consuming countries, setting a level of sufficiency. I think he's right. And from Rev. Billy to the Story of Stuff to the NoShopChristmas idea floated by our own JoMo, I think the idea of disengaging from the teat of consumerism is gaining traction. It'll be interesting to see what the numbers are from this shopping season.

The Necessity

A poem from an email list I'm on. Thanks T&P!

The Necessity
Alice B. Fogel

It isn't true about the lambs.
They are not meek.
They are curious and wild,
full of the passion of spring.
They are lovable,
and they are not silent when hungry.

Tonight the last of the triplet lambs
is piercing the quiet with its need.
Its siblings are stronger
and will not let it eat.

I am its keeper, the farmer, its mother
I will go down to it in the dark,
in the cold barn,
and hold it in my arms.

But it will not lie still—it is not meek.

I will stand in the open doorway
under the weight of watching trees and moon,
and care for it as one of my own.

But it will not love me—it is not meek.

Drink, little one. Take what I can give you.
Tonight the whole world prowls
the perimeters of your life.

Your anger keeps you alive—
it's your only chance.
So I know what I must do
after I have fed you.

I will shape my mouth to the shape
of the sharpest words—
even those bred in silence.

I will impale with words every ear
pressed upon open air.
I will not be meek.

You remind me of the necessity
of having more hope than fear,
and of sounding out terrible names.

I am to cry out loud
like a hungry lamb, cry loud
enough to waken wolves in the night.

No one can be allowed to sleep.

baseball, steroids...not important

I really don't give a crap about ball players doping. That's cause I stopped caring about baseball and sports in general a few years ago. I mean, I'll still watch the beavs or the ducks even on tv occasionally, but ultimately, its not important. Back when I did care about sports, I always noticed a hollow feeling that came after my team won. Say it was some championship or something, it was a feeling of so what? is it really worth all the trouble to stand on top for a year, then do it all over again? Sports goes on and on and this year's champion might be next year's failure. people come and go and nothing really changes. And for every winner, there are countless losers. I don't like that. I didn't like investing so much emotion into something that wasn't even real. Its not like they're playing for land or freedom or to stop terrorism.

So MLB, dope it up, don't dope, I don't give a shit. You bore me and I look forward to the day when society focuses its attention and resources on things that really matter. like providing real security for everyone so that everyone can pursue their highest aspirations, so that everyone can fulfill their potential, not just an elite few.

I should add that as a youth I played a lot of sports. Basketball, football, ultimate frisbee, golf, mostly basketball and outdoor sports like skateboarding, snowboarding, rock climbing, bicycling and now surfing. Doing so gave me countless hours of enjoyment and satisfaction. Perhaps, its similar to the reason why I don't play with legos anymore either. You grow out of things, even though you loved them. Sports certainly have a place in society. I just think that like most things, pro sports is out of balance, relative to other more pressing issues.

I used to love watching the Olympics, but even that is kind of a joke. If your country lies on the equator and most of the people struggle to survive, is there really any chance a gold medal ski jumper will come out of your ranks? Its the rich countries telling the poor countries be like us! Compete with us! We're number 1! yay! give me a break. On the other hand, I know when a Kenyan wins a gold medal in the marathon or something its a huge deal. Just as when Korea co-hosted the World Cup the whole country was united in the streets, nothing to sneeze at.

I guess I shouldn't try to generalize. I just don't see why we need to be spending taxpayer dollars on an investigation into steroids and baseball when the Constitution is being shredded by the current executive.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Friday, December 14, 2007

Loose Change

Finally made it through this video.

Those crazy 9-11 conspiracy nuts are so crazy they actually make sense! I mean they're actually rational and ask valid questions! what is the world coming to?

The threshold, that's what. The threshold of Truth.

Watch this video and spread the word. We must move forward with eyes wide open, not with heads stuck in the sand.

WAKE UP AMERICA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Story of Stuff

Annie says it better.

Confession of a socialisto

I don't hate rich people. I don't hate corporations. I don't hate capitalism. And I certainly don't hate America. I believe in a mixed economy. Profit for innovation and efficiency and quality is the most powerful motivating force the world has ever known. And indeed it has allowed for the largest population the world has ever known. The question is simple, can we keep going the way we've been going, indefinitely? The answer is simple as well, if you think about it, no.

The news that venture capital is increasingly funding private security and fortresses as opposed to green technologies is disturbing, and a reinforcing of the classist state we live in (we never started this class war, is there any question that many rich people view poor people with disdain?)

but I digress,

I don't expect to convince a rich, white, conservative, establishment good ol boy that socialism is American. But it is. We've always had a mixed economy. Just sometimes it was more mixed than others. We fought and died for the 8 hour day, child labor laws, work safety laws, etc. The New Deal and the GI Bill are two examples of, essentially, the government helping people out. I'm not a historian, but I think the evidence is abundantly clear.

So where are we now? I believe the nation as a whole could be represented by an average citizen. Grossly obese, addicted, and overworked and in serious risk of cardiac arrest. So clearly, I don't believe capitalism as it has evolved can continue. We can't keep clearcutting virgin forests, we can't keep polluting the atmosphere, we can't keep exploiting cheap labor to sustain an illusory, consumerist lifestyle. we can't keep building fences and walls higher and higher. We can't keep bombing and taking over other countries to take their oil. Its wrong and its got to stop.

We're running out of resources. Oil primarily. I know how important it is. It is the lifeblood of this economy. But it can't keep on being the lifeblood of the economy. But more fundamentally, we're running out of clean air and water and clean anything, we're all vastly more synthetic than previous generations, a world of guinea pigs for the captains of consumption.

America should re-invest in its middle class to transform itself into a green utopia. We can be leaders in green technology and lifestyle, indeed many of us already are. But a transfer, re-distribution of wealth in this direction is a win win for all. Then America should stop and think about saying enough is enough. Our days of consumption driven hypnosis are over and the potential for creating peace is vast. Do something beautiful with your wealth. Immortalize your life by creating something everyone can enjoy and appreciate, a better world. Don't let your legacy be one of cold selfish craven evil. Anyone who doubts that its possible doesn't understand the miracle of being. We're here, we can do it.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

hairspray

we watched hairspray this weekend. I liked it. It was a fun musical with some serious and real parts. I want to see the original version. Is the music the same?

If you don't like this movie, you should loosen up. watch it.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

thanksgiving in the bay




I should mention that some guy was there carefully balancing these rocks in amazing ways, as you can see. It was really a sight to see him doing it. What a beautiful and bizarre talent. Not really useful, but still wondrous to behold.

Oregon dunes

liberty and/or security

I've reached a conclusion in my own mind about this issue. In a nutshell, the issue of government surveillance and eavesdropping, torture, etc.

America is not a collection of individuals. In other words, America is more than the sum of its parts. Terrorists cannot threaten America with explosives, planes, nuCLEAR weapons, perse, except in the way terrorism has already changed America. Because of terrorists, liberties have been curtailed. That is a direct and profound erosion of America, the idea, the Great Experiment. Because of terrorists, we have an executive hell bent on getting more power for the executive, at least thats what they tell us right? Fine, I'll accept that, but do you accept that you are fundamentally changing America? That the extrapolation of the direction of your policies is nothing less than a return to monarchy?

Many people say it is a good thing. Its worth it to give up some liberties to ensure security. As I've stated before, I agree with Ben Franklin, 'those who would sacrifice liberty for security deserve neither'.

The terrorists have imposed a regime of fear on us and we willingly accept. It is time for Americans to stand up and say, I am a warrior for freedom and liberty and democracy and if I fall victim to a terrorist attack, so be it, as long as America as we love it, the embodiment of those lofty ideals, continues to persist and evolve ever better.

People like John Yoo and Bush II clearly believe that a terrorist attack is the worst possible thing that could ever happen again. Its not. The worse thing is what has happened. They have succeeded in turning America into the Land of the little bit less Free. Home of the fearful and paranoid, selfish and cold.

I know there are people hell bent on murdering Americans. I don't doubt that one bit. As we've been reminded this week we have plenty of Americans hell bent on murdering Americans. I appreciate living in relative security, believe me. I don't even want to think about what life is like in Omaha, or Baghdad or Gaza right now. We've got it good here. But the way to secure ourselves is not to change our central characteristic. The very thing that made us great. The idea that all people are created equal and should be free to live their lives without the government watching their every move.

Of course I'm no expert on counter terrorism, but I just want to go on the record as saying that for me, its not the ultimate horror to go down in a terrorist attack. The ultimate horror is America turning into a police state. The ultimate terror is living a life of illusion, without the slightest fucking clue.

I love America. It is my home and I vow to defend its honor and integrity and its highest ideals in every way I can. Do not curb our liberties for a modicum of security. Do not torture in the name of my security. I won't allow it. Stop terrorism by rising above it, not stooping to its level. I know we can do it. I believe in the bureaucrats, the diplomats, the counterterrorism experts, the FBI agents, the CIA agents, the boots on the ground. I believe they are regular decent, hardworking people doing the best they can, despite a horrific failure of leadership. This president I don't believe for one second. Impeach them now and protect the Constitution by using what the Constitution prescribes for circumstances such as these.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Bush caught lying again

I'd like to echo Mike Gravel's sentiment of gratitude and honor to the brave patriots who issued the National Intelligence Estimate which, as any rational human being can tell, effectively exposes George Bush II as exaggerating the threat posed by Iran. We don't need to be creating more external threats than actually exist. Especially when those in power are the actual threat to peace and justice happening anytime soon.

MR. MIKE GRAVEL: Iran's not a problem, never has been, never will be.

What you're seeing right here is something very unique, very courageous. What the intelligence community has done is drop-kicked the president of the United States. These are people of courage that have watched what the president is doing, onrush to war with Iran.

And so by releasing this information, which is diametrically opposed to the estimate that was given in '05 by showing that there is no information to warrant what the White House has been doing, they have now boxed in the president in his ability to go to war. So, my hat is off to these courageous people within the bureaucrats — bureaucracy of the intelligence community.

Friday, November 30, 2007

friday movie night ramble

we rented the dvd of the Last Mimzy tonight.

I really enjoyed this movie. Sure it was a bit fanciful and over the top but I like science based fantasy. The product placement was over the top, fo sho. But I couldn't help but rejoice in the buddhist/meditating/new ager woman who recognizes the universe communicating to her fiance and giving him the kick in the ass that he needs to do what he needs to do at a critical moment.

Watch this movie. It won't dumb you down.

Having the dvd, I clicked through the various featurettes and in the section on dna, I was struck with the reminder that humans are 99.9% identical on the genetic level. The featurette featured Dr Spencer Wells, a geneticist/scientist who's been on PBS on a show about retracing the evolution of humans across the globe and how we all can trace our genetic roots back to Africa and how we're really one big messed up family. He also stated that the incredible diversity in humans has occurred in the last 50,000 years, a mere 2-3000 generations. The salient point being, the differences that we love to, are brainwashed to focus on, are products of culture and mostly in our heads.

This made me think of the NOVA program awhile back on intelligent design. To me this show was a slam dunk on creationism trying to infiltrate the public school system. I really appreciated this show and highly recommend everyone watch it. And keep in mind that as I've posted before, I don't think evolution threatens the notion of God in the slightest. It does threaten the worldview of narrow minded religious people and their narrow unscientific explanation of how things came to be. Ironic that the scientific view of evolution and human evolution suggests common ancestry and I daresay a message of One Love, stewardship of the earth, whereas the "god mongers" of churchianity promote a view that species spontaneously emerged (by the hand of god, presumably) in separate lines of organisms. What hogwash. People think descending from monkeys is some horrible thing. Get over it. Its beautiful and miraculous. We're creatures on a planet where dna in cells keeps replicating itself. In plants and animals, fungi and phlegm. behold the greatness of God.

the other video I rented is Art School Confidential.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

two birds with one stone


improve your vocabulary and help feed hungry people at freerice.com

thanks for the tip, OPB radio!

Friday, November 16, 2007

Friday night brain scramble

I admit it, tonight my mind is like a scrambled egg
Perspective, perception altered by a friendly fun guy
The effect comes on without hesitation,
the threshold long since bitterly crossed
nothing to do but sit back and enjoy the terrifying and uncertain ride
Truths momentarily materialize like forbidden fruit
evaporating upon attempted enunciation
leaving the soul feeling empty and hollow
Life is beautiful
The endless struggle against entropy
How futile! how noble!
breathe in breathe out
the cycle continues
we create the reality of our lives
moment by moment
choosing in an instant
irretractable behaviors and comments
unexamined and rarely given a second thought
if we did, however,
we might realize how overwhelmingly critical
our decisions really are
and we might resign to paralysis
for fear of embarrassment and failure
so blunder on
breathe, step, act
one moment after the other
Ramble on to your indifferent audience of potentially millions
but lets face it, just a handful of dear friends
and a few adventurous fellow ramblers.
It matters
All of it matters
Put it out there
the noosphere can take it
nevermind the blogosphere
Put it out there for all to see and judge and worry not
You have your role to play
No one else can substitute
No body can duplicate your love
your sorrow or your outrage
not even you
for the moment passes
opportunity lost begets
a new dawn of unbounded possibility
until its over

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

photo for the day



Elk Lake, taken the same weekend as the previous shot from Battle Ax.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

wood stove rockin and rollin

In what may yet turn out to be a rash decision, we've gone ahead and had a wood stove installed. It wasn't cheap, which is why I say it may have been a rash decision. But I think it was worth it. Our house has never been this toasty before. If we ever get around to insulating the walls, this place will be very energy efficient. Our old gas furnace was noisy, smelly, and it burned gas from the gas company. Now our gas bills will be much lower and our heating will at least be carbon neutral.

A great resource for wood burners, woodheat.org. Burning wood is better only if we do it right, that is, have hot fires that don't produce smoke. Its more efficient, less polluting, and safer because no smoke means no creosote in your chimney, which means less likely chimney fires.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

people who say "nucular"

you lose two credibility points, in my humble opinion.

its NUCLEAR folks!!!!

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

100 posts!



Taken from Battle Ax mountain looking north towards Mt. Hood, a couple summers ago.

evolution and God

Somebody explain to me how believing in evolution has any real bearing on the mystery of god/God. Once you get past the shallow, literal biblical crap, understanding the concept of the evolutionary process does not infringe on the greatness of it all. It doesn't lessen the overwhelming bewilderment of it all. It doesn't make the intricate complexities of matter and energy, which is to say, energy and energy, of what is really going on here, life: human, thinking, aware life, any less miraculous or wonderful to behold.

Evolution can very much be thought of as the hand of god/God at work.

Whats the big deal?

How does my belief in this matter affect my compassion for my fellow life forms? Or put another way, what matters is my compassion for fellow life forms, not my specific and narrowly defined (and no doubt limited in scope and accuracy) mechanism of how these life forms came to be.

Sunday, November 04, 2007

fcc trying to corrupt ownership rules...again

apparently, corporate tools on OUR FCC are trying again to change the ownership rules to allow for even more media ownership by corporate titans.

last time around, over 2 million people contacted the FCC to voice opposition, but they didn't get the message. Even an act of Congress didn't slow them down from grabbing their ankles for the corporate bloodsuckers.

send a message to the FCC

and help protect democracy and diversity of media ownership.

Friday, November 02, 2007

encounter with an opossum and other thoughts

i saw an opossum in the garage tonight. It startled me and I reacted almost uncontrollably. I hissed at it. I think it went and hid behind some boxes. I didn't want to move all the boxes so I tried to wait and see if it came back out, but it didn't.

The opossum made me think about my relationship with animals. I consider myself an animal lover but my reaction to the opossum was one of instantaneous terror. Was that because it was in the garage? I thought about how much space an opossum requires and how much space I require. How much space people require. How much land people require.

As I waited my mind wandered and my eyes became unfocused. I thought about how limited perception really is. I tried to sense the opossum's energy field. I failed. I thought about how people tend to insist they know the truth of reality. How people tend to live as though they know everything there is to know. Particularly in terms of politics and society in general. Things could be so different. People are amazingly versatile when they want to be.

People don't know everything there is to know. There is much in the world that we don't even perceive. Truth may be relative to individuals but to a higher perspective, the god's eye view, there is an ultimate truth of the collective comings and goings of life on planet Earth. What's going through my mind may be totally different from what's going through your mind, though we are looking at the same thing, but to a third party we're just two individuals experiencing life as constructed by a (at least in name) civil society. The experience for most of the people on planet Earth is one of desperate poverty and insecurity. Is that really how things should be? A tiny portion of the population consume and control the resources while the rest do what we can to secure crumbs for ourselves. Most going without. I think one thing people forget is that as best as we can determine, we are the final arbiters of what really is and how things can be.

We're here. Here we all are, 6 Billion and counting. How many impoverished? How many fearing for their lives, wondering how to eat, where to sleep, how to survive? How many ruling the world?

We can do better.

The way is not to grow economies as practiced today. Building a strip mine in the Third world does not help the situation. Exploiting poverty and exchange rates may help another small group of people marginally, in the short term, but I don't really see this as alleviating the poverty situation.

As much as I hesitate to say it, I believe the way is to develop society and culture to be less consumptive and more creative. How much of our lives is devoted to consumption? How much to creativity? Creative people are unique and special in our society. True, many exist and flourish, but we need more. We need to be able to provide people with true security: clean air, water and food, shelter, love and freedom with less resources. We need a project. If we have a project to focus on, the material things of life pale in comparison. We should focus on simply bringing people together and providing emotional and physical security in terms of everyone's essential human dignity. If there is someone you feel shouldn't be included in the bringing together, the gathering, ask why and work to change that, try to include everyone, regardless.

Corvallis Open Forum is a start in this direction, but it's very intermittent. Especially nowadays. Tomorrow will be the third week there hasn't been a COF. But we will be trying out Wed. nights at the Beanery.

Why get together? Its fun, exciting, real, better than sitting at home watching tv. interactive, and an expression of love.

Perhaps REAL physical security (as previously described) for all will result if we first provide at least emotional security to allow for individual expression, which can lead to collective expression, which can lead to awareness, which I'm hoping can lead to a better world, heaven on earth, utopia, a population free from want and free to explore the universe in all its wondrous glory.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Buddhism = Jesus: Love your enemies

from Mindfulness in Plain English

For all practical purposes, if all of your enemies are well, happy and peaceful, they would not be your enemies. If they are free from problems, pain, suffering, affliction, neurosis, psychosis, paranoia, fear, tension, anxiety, etc., they would not be your enemies. Your practical solution to your enemies is to help them to overcome their problems, so you can live in peace and happiness. In fact, if you can, you should fill the minds of all your enemies with loving-kindness and make all of them realize the true meaning of peace, so you can live in peace and happiness. The more they are in neurosis, psychosis, fear, tension, anxiety, etc., the more trouble, pain and suffering they can bring to the world. If you could convert a vicious and wicked person into a holy and saintly individual, you would perform a miracle. Let us cultivate adequate wisdom and loving- kindness within ourselves to convert evil minds to saintly minds.

When you hate somebody you think, "Let him be ugly. Let him lie in pain. Let him have no prosperity. Let him not be right. Let him not be famous. Let him have no friends Let him, after death, reappear in an unhappy state of depravation in a bad destination in perdition." However, what actually happens is that your own body generates such harmful chemistry that you experience pain, increased heart beat, tension, change of facial expression, loss of appetite for food, deprivation of sleep and appear very unpleasant to others. You go through the same things you wish for your enemy. Also you cannot see the truth as it is. Your mind is like boiling water. Or you are like a patient suffering from jaundice to whom any delicious food tastes bland. Similarly, you cannot appreciate somebody's appearance, achievement, success, etc. As long as this condition exists, you cannot meditate well.

Vote yes on 49






Keep Oregon green

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Protest this Saturday

oct27.org web button

I will be there in spirit. I'm not about to drive 5 hours one way to Seattle, burning oil, to protest the War. That would be silly.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

War with Iran is Unacceptable

With regards to the media coverage/chatter/drums of war beating regarding Iran, I just need to say that it seems like the administration is deliberately acting to enlarge the threat that Iran poses. Bush, as is typical, is pouring gasoline on the flames, blowing oxygen into the flames.

Iran is not a friend of the West. Iran is against Israel. Fine. The way to deal with a potential threat is not make it worse. Could it be that the reason some Iranians don't trust the US, much less Bush, is because of our historic role in toppling democratically elected leaders and installing puppet regimes?

If its about the oil then at least have the cojones to admit it. Oil addiction is no joke. I don't have first hand knowledge, but my understanding of heroin and meth addiction is that the addict is obsessed. The drug takes over the person and uses him/her to continue to have itself used and abused. Oil addiction is not unlike meth addiction. Just know that in my humble opinion, ANY blood for oil, American, Iraqi, or Iranian or human blood is entirely unacceptable.

The fact is they don't have nuclear weapons. This is a case of a self-fulfilling prophecy. We keep accusing them of having nuclear weapons so they figure they better actually get some before its too late. Strengthen and give credibility and validity to the IAEA. Hans Blix was right, Iraq didn't have weapons. By going through international, transparent channels we can achieve the most credibility.

Bush and Co. got it so totally wrong about Iraq. There is absolutely no reason to take one word that they say about Iran seriously. War with Iran is off the table.

Before I hear one more word about Iran we need to re-investigate what happened on 9-11.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Matsutake madness

This past weekend we went on our semi-regular pilgrimage to the dunes of Oregon to see what bounty the fall rains and plentiful pine mulch with a certain mycelium could offer. We were blessed. We are up to our necks in matsutake. What a fantastic treasure of nature.


Ursula LeGuin

I recently finished reading The Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula LeGuin. This was an interesting and enjoyable read. She is so creative and intelligent! I love the concept of being in kemmer, both for Gethenians and for Terrans (always in kemmer) what a concept! Highly recommended. I should add that this was one of those books that was acquired years ago, but only recently read. I have many books I want to get to, but for some reason it always has to be the right time for a certain book, otherwise I can't really get into it. For example, I've had the book Thought Contagion for awhile now, but the last time I tried reading it I fell asleep.

Vipassana meditation book

A few nights ago I did a google search for "the meaning of life" and came across a website called stevepavlina.com wherein, steve pavlina tells a remarkable story about his personal journey and experience. While surfing through some comments, I then came across a free web book on meditation. I'm still reading it but just want to post about it. I'm on the fifth chapter and its very interesting. I've always been interested in meditation but have yet to summon the discipline to start a regular practice.

Please check out these sites and tell me what you think of them.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

John Frohnmayer for US Senate

This gentleman is running for Gordon Smith's seat. Based on a quick glance at his website, I have to say I support his candidacy. He's for impeachment for all the right reasons. I suppose being Dave Frohnmayer's brother shouldn't count as a strike against him.

His participation in Corvallis Open Forum isn't biasing my endorsement either, really.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

this is fucking bullshit

let us please have a show of hands, is this fucking bullshit or what?

Are we really just going to sit here while this trend continues? How bad does it have to get?

Tell me.

Sunday, October 07, 2007

why i love public radio

I just heard the most amazing nun on the radio. Her name is Sister Joan Chittister, and well, if you have the time, please check it out here.

Which brings me to another point. People say there are two sides to everything. First of all, that is a simplistic and inaccurate statement. There might be two sides. But more likely, there might be 15 sides for all we know. Many questions, the important questions especially, are quite often beyond the description of words, much less the answers. Secondly, as we progress as a species, some things become one-sided. (Slavery is evil and must be stopped, for example) There appears to be emerging a global consensus in the area of, for lack of a better term, progressive thought. I believe this convergence, which originates from the most diverse and varied points/individuals, (its decidedly not coming from the establishment) to be indicative of greater truth. That is to say, in a nutshell, we're right.

Those of us who believe in one love, that we should strive for equality and justice for All, those of us who deplore the raping, pillaging and fouling of our Earth, those of us who struggle to find hope in a society dominated by a massive concentration of wealth and destructive power the likes of which the world has never seen, those of us who are less concerned with someone's religion and sexuality as we are with the tangible results of our lives (are you bringing forth more love or less, more compassion or less?), those of us who hold sacred exisiting human life in addition to the embryonic, even as we work to minimize the need for the practice of ending embryonic life, those of us who consider the coming generation when analyzing our actions, We are on the right path.

We should question and vet, we should play devil's advocate, and we should always consider all viewpoints, but there comes a point when, as in science, truth emerges and naysayers expose themselves as less than credible. To continue to insist the earth is flat despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary doesn't serve any positive purpose in the long run. Ask yourself, is holding this belief contributing to a better world or does it feed my pocketbook/ego? Does it lead to equality and justice for All? or does it maintain the status quo?

Honest disagreement is a part of the process, there are countless questions left to be debated and investigated, but I think there are a great number of critically important issues where a broad, all-inclusive consensus exists despite every effort by the powers that be to confuse and conquer.

Am I trying to wage class war? I'm not waging anything, the ruling class has left a trail of blood from here back to the dawn of history. I'm fighting for survival.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

The War

is over. The Ken Burns PBS documentary, The War, that is.

I've been watching it all along and don't know what to think. People say it was a necessary war. I put this notion to the folks at last week's forum and some responded saying that it was the Geneva conventions that created the conditions for WWII to happen in the first place, and thus could have been avoided with better foresight at the conclusion of WWI. A man in the film said that evil exists. I'm not so blind as to think that evil doesn't exist. Evil being defined as a capacity within people to commit horrendous atrocities on other people and the Earth. Indeed, we are all witnesses to evil in this day and age, as our (p)resident lays waste to a million innocent people in Iraq so that he and his buddies can steal their oil. Blood for oil? are you fucking kidding me? WTF? Of course, they can't admit the truth, they must disguise their intentions with high flying rhetoric about democracy and freedom, even as they desecrate the Constitution and piss on REAL democracy.

But I digress. I think Ken Burns' documentary is timely and valuable in that it so clearly illustrates how the present occupation of Iraq is anything but necessary, taking the points from the documentary at face value. It so clearly illustrates how overwhelmingly united and determined and willing to sacrifice the nation was during WWII, traits that are conspicuously absent today.

The documentary falls short though, by not refuting the notion that war is inevitable. In fact, I daresay it glorifies war. Evil exists but better solutions exist for preventing war, and terrorism, i might add. Just because people, 99.99% men, have waged wars for thousands of years and indeed, all of recorded history, doesn't mean that we can't envision a future free of war. In a world consistently full of dichotomies, I believe that now that we have fully realized our capacity for destruction and death, we have a responsibility to fully realize our hitherto latent capacity for creation and life. We can and we must.

We few who care frequently come back to the notion that the ignorant sleeping masses must be woken up. How to achieve this in a world of relative plenty and plenty of distractions? Bread and Circuses, as John Bogle (among others) said. Should we be ready for the inevitable collapse and hope to ride it out? or actually try to slow the train down, as I've suggested in the poll? Tonight I'm leaning toward gettin off while the gettin's good and hope to survive. I'm utterly stumped as to how to swim against this massive current and furthermore, get many others to do so as well.

Everything and everyone are connected. Life is a miracle to be cherished and relished. I suppose I should just be grateful for my conscience, and just take it day by day, doing what I can, when I can, trying to create alliances with others, trying to encourage more love and joy and less hate and fear.

Why are we so impatient? Why do we insist on creating change overnight? Who am I to think that I know better than those I call 'asleep'?

Monday, October 01, 2007

I like Mike...Gravel

The Newshour has been doing interviews with all of the major candidates for president, even Mike Gravel tonight. This guy is for real. He's got some good ideas and he's not bought off by big corporate campaign money. After seeing the interview I thought about re-registering Dem to vote in the primary.

Something else unrelated, i meant to post this before, but forgot. who are these people and why would they be saying these things?

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

sieg heil!

view this and weep for we are accelerating down the slippery slope of fascism.

link is to a video of the student being tazered after asking a question to john kerry. what a fucking tool.

many people applauded too, which is the truly horrific part.

interesting interview

as a 'failed' economist, i still occasionally find myself with an ear for 'real' economists, alan greenspan in particular lately, i guess as a result of his massive book promotion campaign.

well, after linking over to alternet through nina's blog posting on credit/maxed out, i saw this article/interview/debate by amy goodman and naomi klein with alan greenspan.

i have to hand it to him for agreeing to the interview/debate, but he failed to adequately address the issues raised by klein. it seems apparent to me, from the text, that greenspan is an old school inhabitant of the ivory tower without any concept of sustainability. he keeps using the tired argument that capitalism as we know it has created the most wealth ever and that the system is working great. he doesn't recognize the shortsightedness of rapid resource depletion, especially one as critical as fossil fuel. he doesn't realize that there is no substitute for oil. not in the time frame used by economists to rationalize resource depletion.

greenspan doesn't have the well being of ALL in mind. he still thinks we will grow our way to eliminating poverty. he had the gall to refer to populist politics as shortsighted. what a laugh!

he in effect excuses crony capitalism as a part of human nature. he recognizes it and yet doesn't take the next step of saying it is criminal. he was the greatest for the captains of capital, he was the worst for the common man.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

report on this week's forum

well, this week was interesting, very interesting.

to start with, i'm not sure when it happened but as i was pulling the trailer along, i noticed it seemed unusually heavy. at first i thought i was just feeling sluggish, but later it turns out the trailer had a flat, probably for most of the ride down there. not a big deal, though.

at the site, a couple bikes were parked in our spot, again, but no big deal. i proceeded to set up. i knew dan and courtney weren't going to be there but after tom, no one was showing up. charles did after awhile and then a group of 5 or 6 people carrying ron paul signs showed up. the one guy had stopped by before. so they kicked it off, eager to spread the message of ron paul.

i knew ron paul was against the war but i was not as aware of some of the other things with which i agree, like bringing american troops home from other parts of the world, such as korea, getting the government out of american's private lives, ending corporate rule. i guess there are many aspects of the libertarian viewpoint with which i, as a member of the far left, can agree with. (as charles noted, greens can be called socialist libertarians) to be sure there are aspects i don't agree with, but wrt the forum, i felt almost vindicated and validated more than ever before. iow, what these ron paul supporters illustrated was that the possibility for consensus on some very important and critical issues amongst ordinary people is indeed vast and that the forum is a good way to establish that.

well, the rp party left after awhile and we remaining few carried on a little while, eventually devolving into a casual discussion without keeping time. at which point i proceeded to fix the flat and get something to eat.

it was another beautiful morning, wish you were there.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

email to rep. hooley

Dear Congresswoman Hooley,

I was not there to greet you when you stopped by to speak about the Willamette, but I wanted to be. Perhaps next time.

I'm writing today to express to you my outrage at the Blackwater situation in Iraq and the privatization of the military in general. I don't think private firms should receive no-bid government contracts and be able to act above any law.

The fact that we have devolved to the point of having mercenary forces suggests yet another parallel to the fall of Rome.

Please do what you can to bring Blackwater criminals to justice and end the practice of hiring mercenary forces.

Thank you for your sincere efforts on behalf of the people of the 5th district of Oregon.

measure 50

measure 50 does two things, it creates a huge disincentive to smoke and it funds healthcare for children. looking long term, the less people smoke, the less healthcare funding, from this source. presumably the goal is to minimize smoking to zero, so eventually, this source of funding will wither to nothing.

in the meantime, however, it is a regressive tax because let's face it, low-income folk are more likely to be smokers than middle and upper class (by definition) conformists. they set the standards for participation in society.

addiction to nicotine is insane. i know that its not good, that its quite horrible, in fact. the cancer risk and heart disease, emphysema, etc. and i feel the social stigma and shame, i feel the financial burden, believe me, and yet i find it hard to even summon the desire to actually quit. actually do it once and for all. when i think about quitting i'm filled with dread. but that's addiction right?

the cigarette satisfies immediately... and i suppose that's what we've become accustomed to here in America. we have collectively bought into the notion that we can be satisfied now and pay for it later. only now the bills are starting to come due and unforeseen costs are starting to add up. is that what freedom is about? the freedom to live for today, come what may? or is the better freedom to be able to not buy another pack of smokes for the rest of your life?

i'm not saying that since America is addicted to a number of things, such as cheap and abundant petroleum products for example, i have an excuse to keep smoking. but clearly addiction is complex and defeating it is no simple matter. and you can't begin to defeat it unless you first recognize it. i suppose one good thing w has done is to make it official that we are addicted to oil.

i need to quit once and for all, but its difficult. what is the best way to defeat addiction?

back to measure 50. i don't know, it seems like another band-aid approach to providing funding for health care for children, in this instance, but if it can help me quit (part of the funds go to stop-smoking programs) then maybe its worth it. on the other hand, it might give me another justification to smoke. you know, that warm fuzzy feeling that while satisfying your craving you're also funding healthcare for children. will this let us off the hook? in effect legitimizing smokers as contributing members of society? wishful thinking.

help me quit

Monday, September 17, 2007

on 'fresh air' today

i listen to the radio program 'fresh air' on occasion and today the interviewee was one Bud Krogh, who was a lawyer in the Nixon administration. he recently wrote a book entitled Integrity, and he seems like a wise man. Check out the interview here if you have the time. I really liked how he said that in critical circumstances, you have to trust your gut instinct. Having lived and participated and been indicted and jailed for his actions during the nixon administration, he regretted not having the wherewithal to do the right thing when the situation demanded it.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

return of the rain

yes, it seems that summer is over. we've been 'treated' to a fairly intense downpour this evening.

a few notes on junk pop culture.

wife and i went to see Dragon Wars. we went because its the first major motion picture to be released in America that was directed by a Korean director. man what a let down. this was one of the worst movies i've ever seen, which, granted isn't saying much because i haven't seen many movies in general, but it was bad. it was embarrassing. filled with bad acting, a joke of a plot and script, excessive violence and just bad, bad decisions throughout. it was like a really bad b movie, with crazy computer graphics. that was the only good thing about it.

yes, i'll admit, we've been watching the emmys tonight and if you didn't catch it, Sally Field won an award and during her thank you speech, she railed against the war, at which point, Fox promptly censored her.

Colbert and Stewart did a great segment, as only they can do, on the wastefulness of the emmys.

Saturday's forum was good. we went past 1:00 and there were a couple great musical acts which was a nice change, in addition to new speakers. a woman said she would be heading over to the stadium later (during the beaver game) to demonstrate for impeachment. so around 3:30 i headed down there with my guitar to try to find them and just hang out and maybe play some tunes. i didn't see them so started riding back down to the riverfront to try to find people to jam with. i didn't get very far as i came across a man named mike who was collecting cans and bottles, who saw my guitar and practically begged me to play it. i obliged and had a beer with him and his friends. it turns out he recently had his guitar stolen and had a serious jones just to play some licks. he is really good and played some great music. i thought of my old guitar collecting dust and decided to kick it down to mike. why not? so after playing a few tunes and letting his friends all play a little bit, i went home and got the old 'conqueror' (of fingertips) and rode back down and jammed a little more. mike has serious chops, but his buddy greg could hold down pretty good too. he played some blues while i tried soloing a little, which was fun. their other buddy dennis was great too, man i wish i knew how to play 'war pigs' because he had the vocals down pat. turns out dennis was the man who was shot by a low life frat boy whilst dumpster diving. furthermore, dennis is suing the little prick (or the frat?) for $2.7 M! I sure hope he wins and gets a break from living on the streets or wherever.

well, its back to work tomorrow. yippee skippy, as my old boss used to say.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

petraeus report

i've been listening to the testimony/questioning this week of general petraeus and don't really have much to say regarding it. i'm not really sure why i bothered to listen, but it really makes you wonder about our cynicism and if perhaps people like the general, the congresspeople and senators really are decent people doing the best they can on behalf of their constituents and not just corporate tools/oligarchical puppets. maybe they are honest people deceived into thinking they are working for the people when in fact they are corporate tools.

i didn't really think about it when i put on my moveon.org t-shirt today, but when it started getting warmer and i took off the sweatshirt, i felt a little funny about it. after work i checked my email, and of course moveon.org sent out an email statement so i clicked on the link for the ad in the nyt that asks general petraeus or general betray us? after looking at it and thinking about it, i don't think there's anything wrong with questioning the integrity of anyone connected with the administration, an administration that used up the last tiny bit of credibility it had long ago. but i do think moveon may have made a tactical mistake in this case. its not going to play well in the mainstream.

one notable snippet is how the general referred to ground troops as 'assets'. i mean yeah, soldiers are assets in a military operation but for chrissake, they're first and foremost people and i was disgusted with referring to them as 'assets' as if they are just so many cogs in the machine. but indeed, that is what they are and what the vast majority of us are. economists regard labor as a unit of the production process. it takes this many units of labor and this many units of capital to produce whatever. bullshit. this needs to change. workers are people, human beings dammit and equally deserving of full consideration as the shareholders, board members and stock traders. soldiers are not just assets, they are sons and daughters, fathers and mothers and brothers and sisters. to describe them as assets is demeaning and dehumanizing. i guess that's why they do it. another reality distorting euphemism like collateral damage.

i think the highlight for me was when a congressman from Hawaii pointed out the war is for oil and i want to further investigate who he is, what exactly he said and what he was talking about because i didn't catch it all.

Monday, September 10, 2007

no end in sight

this is the preview for the documentary mentioned in the previous post. check it out.


m. williamson

a few years ago i read a book of essays compiled by this author about what the world could be like.

tonight i came across this blog entry, which is a few months old but a good read nonetheless. the movie/documentary looks interesting also and i'm surprised i haven't heard of it already.

check it out here, please.

here's to a great week everybody.

Saturday, September 08, 2007

corvallis open forum celebrates one year anniversary

the actual one year anniversary was a few weeks ago but we celebrated last night with delicious food, beverage and music making. what a great party!

its funny though. most of the people who came to the party didn't come to the forum today. oh well. it was kind of rough getting up today and getting down there after partying all night.

i wonder if we'll make it another year. i hope so.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

more on e=mc^2

from a fwd. from my buddy C. up in Astoria.

it seems like this knowledge is coming from a lot of different angles these days.

thanks for the quote brudda

--
"A human being is part of a whole, called by us the Universe, a
part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts
and feelings, as something separated from the rest a kind of optical
delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for
us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few
persons nearest us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this
prison by widening our circles of compassion to embrace all living
creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty."
-Albert Einstein

e=mc^2 changed my life. when i finally realized the simple truth and beauty of this statement
i understood what Einstein is referring to in this quote. We as human beings, flesh and
blood, earth-bound, food cravers, are just another form of energy in this situation we
find ourselves in. and indeed, the whole set up in the world, 'the way things are'
in this earth, as far as human societies are concerned, is all in our heads. that's why i get
frustrated with people who say 'that's the way it is, has been and always will be',
because they're flat wrong. that may be how it is, but it certainly isn't how it always has
been and there is only our collective consent that allows it to continue to be in the future.

What is 'it' you ask? for starters the basic issue of who slices and how they slice the pie.
The list goes on.

Indeed, our circle of compassion must grow to include everyone and all life on the planet.



Monday, August 27, 2007

fcc public comment

i just have to mention this real quick.
i watched bill moyers again this week and one of his guests was michael copps, a commissioner on the FCC. he's a leading proponent for controlling media ownership. i clicked on the link for the FCC comment page and was flabbergasted. you have to have a part time job just to file a comment. its ridiculous. it wasn't so hard a couple years ago when the issue came up and 3 million people made comments that were 99.9% against allowing for more media consolidation.
sorry i don't have the link, but you'll find it at bill moyers site.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

musings

i'm feeling pretty down. the outlook does not seem bright.
i keep on cause i can, i guess, but look at the future increasingly as something to be avoided.
i know its negative thinking but its also science.
my individual and our collective security is increasingly uncertain.
wtf?
its easy to slip into a narcissistic fatalism mode, 'the world is going to hell anyway so why bother, i'm gonna have as much fun as i can while i'm here...' i just hope this time it isn't as long as the last time.
no i'm not there yet, but i just don't know...about life and what its all about. this struggle for money to pay the bills and the mortgage, this struggle for some imagined future utopia, this struggle to shine the light of truth in an ocean of darkness.
who am i to claim to have any modicum of truth?
when will the pendulum of social justice swing back, or is that metaphor completely erroneous to begin with?
we need health care dammit
this is fucking bullshit
why don't we all demand it. i mean, for real, if the 40 million or whatever the number is, of us uninsured Americans just got together and voted for universal health care, we could get it. but the lords of empire are too skilled at dividing and conquering. and i really can't blame the wal-mart slave whose too tired to give a damn about writing an email to his/her congressperson.
but for real, we need to wake up in this country now. you gotta ask yourself, don't i deserve health care as my right as a human being? whose gonna pay for it? you might ask. the elite should pay for it. tax the rich. they've benefited the most while we've suffered, so they should pay for our health care. the truth of the matter is, if us 40 million didn't go to work as an organized union, we could shut this country down. the lowest paid do the most critical work. think about what your life would be like if all the janitors stopped working. talk about a mess. you couldn't live like that. when i was doing entry level construction, digging a ditch, i realized the nobility of manual labor. you can have the fanciest plans in the world, but until someone grabs the shovel and starts moving earth, not a damn thing is going to get built. the people who do the real work, the work where the rubber meets the road, food harvesting, garbage collection, ditch digger, these are the lucky many who change the physical world hopefully for the better. but for some crazy reason we allow the decision makers to make all the money. why? all they do is make a decision. we do the real work. we live in a democracy don't we? and we clearly have the numbers, do we not?
don't get me wrong, i'm not advocating a general strike by any means.
i just think people with low incomes should vote in their own interest and vote for some real change. republicans especially and many democrats as well are bought and paid for by industry and corporate elites, who absolutely, unequivocally do not have our interests in mind. people at the top think they're better than everybody else. the fact is the people at the top are the worst. say what you want about bill and melinda gates, but to continue to support and and bolster an obviously failed system that is unsustainable and unjust is immoral. the elite have created the system to suck the wealth, health and money right on out of the very economy that supports itself. they are primarily responsible for changing it, but unlikely to do so unless by force. hopefully that will be negotiated peacefully and not violently as happened in 1776.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

the way forward

whats it going to be?
so many viewpoints
so many conflicting 'facts'
whats a person to do?
one knows how different things could be
one knows how much better things could be
but things just stay the same
things just get worse
endless war and poverty
climate destabilization
whats a person to do?
wage peace they say
i think i do
but is it enough?
write to representatives
i do but apparently our numbers are too few to make a difference
so whats it going to be?
the way forward

Thursday, August 16, 2007

enlightenment and the founding of the nation

i watched an innocuous program the other day on opb about free-masonry. referring to the dan brown novel angels and demons and other conspiracy minded viewpoints, the program pointed out the connection of freemasonry and the founding of the nation, as well as the enlightenment period.
i find it sorrowful that we can look at an era in decades past and refer to it as 'the enlightenment' as if it had come and gone. but indeed that is what has happened. we live in a new dark ages in terms of intellectual honesty and integrity, pursuit of truth through reason and logic, and pursuit of happiness in general.
according to this show, these are the values held by the founding fathers. certainly not was it religious dogma. freedom of religion, right?

however, ever since that moment of brilliance in the late 18th century, when the framers and founders framed and founded this country, we continued on more or less the pattern of empire that has gone on since recorded history. today, the USA dominates global trade policies and it enforces the sale of oil in US dollars. petroleum is the lifeblood of 'modern' civilization and we're running out. there is no question that we live in a de facto monarchy these days. when the ruler does what he wants and not what the people want, when the ruler lies and takes the nation to war, that's pretty much a monarchy in my book. when the ruler says he can detain, interrogate, torture and even kill who he wants, when he wants, without a fair trial, that's a monarchy.

people think its about ensuring national security. its destroying the nation. it's rotting the core.

bush is exactly the kind of president the founding fathers anticipated when they included the articles for impeachment in the Constitution.

at least that's how i see it. who am i to say? just one of many.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

one year of corvallis open forum

this coming weekend will mark the one year anniversary of the corvallis open forum. we will be in LA and won't be able to be here, though will definitely be in spirit.

corvallis open forum hasn't become a city wide phenomenon, but i feel like we're starting to have a level of legitimacy, as Dan insists we do. the forum is chugging along. attracting new visitors and participants every week, not many people have become regular attendees, but some have.

i think what we're doing is still worthwhile and valuable to the community. i think if more people participated and brought in different perspectives it would make it more interesting.

in a democracy called America, when so much is riding on our votes and our everyday behaviors, as we awaken to the fact that we are all interconnected parts of the larger whole, we must communicate across traditional boundaries and unite in order to have confidence in the future as something to look forward to. that's my opinion.

We provide the space for that communication to occur. we provide a 'new' kind of activity for anyone interested. it doesn't cost anything in terms of money, only time and concern and patience and respect.

The corvallis open forum is changing the world before our very eyes. If we didn't go there every week with our signs, chairs, soapbox, sign up sheet and timer and of course, our intention, there'd just be the tree and the grass and perhaps a few people milling about, but they more likely than not would not be listening to other people speak about something they care about, or speaking themselves about something they find important. I think this is the kind of social change we need in this day and age. Granted we need real leaders and real policies that improve everyone's lives, not just a handful of rich pigs, but we also need to re-connect with each other, and experience the de facto unity of all life.

defazio won't impeach

according to the honorable Peter Defazio, representative to the US Congress, impeachment is not going to happen. He said that its impossible, and that it would completely disallow other bills to be passed. He seemed to be narrowing the scope by talking about impeaching Cheney, he didn't really mention impeaching Bush. He said that if we impeached Cheney, Bush would appoint F. Thompson as new vice president and he would be elected as president and we'd have four more years of 'this' administration. Well what about impeaching them both?

I think Democrats would ensure their re-election by starting impeachment proceedings because they would be putting defending the constitution, protecting it by using it, to restore checks and balances according to the framers' design. so politically speaking its a win win. the people are tired of the bullshit and will support enthusiastically any effort to start cutting through it.

One thing Defazio did not address was the precedent being set. I think he mentioned getting a democrat elected to the white house being the priority in order to eventually investigate, prosecute and convict all of the criminal behavior committed by this administration. He didn't really address what Dennis Kucinich would do with the expanded powers of the executive branch established by the current powerwielders.

I think its simple. The framer's anticipated an over-reach by the executive branch so they gave congress the ability to check the executive. when the congress fails to do what it's supposed to do according to the Constitution, then who knows what the hell is going on. The possibility that our system of government is indeed a cover and facade for the actual powers that be, the 21st century aristo-corporat-military industrial complex, that democratically elected, representative government is failing in America, becomes a little more real. Then what? Whats a patriotic, concerned, citizen to do now?

That answer is also simple. We must unite and organize and do what we can. How? thats not so simple, of course. The greatest power that an average person has, in my opinion is the power of the purchase. We have an opportunity to use that power in a few months, by not exercising it. Here in the blissful warmth of summer, I'm thinking ahead to December, the shortest days of the year, Christmas time, when rather than going out and spending a ton of money for crap that my relatives and loved ones don't really need, I'm going to not shop. So i'm going to have to find another, perhaps more personable and meaningful way to celebrate the season. Don't shop this Christmas and send the powers that be a message, express yourself with the most effective method you have. Don't shop because you want to tell the world that you are protesting the sorry state of the world and the so-called leaders who are responsible. Don't shop and focus on Jesus Christ and what his message was. Love each other as you love yourself. That means see each other as ourselves, that means tearing down the boundaries of class. And 'race', gender, age, ideology, and perhaps even habit.
We need to unite for the common good of all the people of the world.

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

camping on the coast

We went camping this past weekend. Oswald West state park was our main destination. Suffice it to say, it was awesome. Snagging a campsite was a bit of a chore and my foot was giving me some problems, but the surfing was fun, the area is beautiful (next time i want to do a lot more exploring). Had some really fun jams with my good buddies, and we actually played for a couple audiences who were really cool. We, well, Chris dubbed us the 'minstrel cycles' and we started walking through camp playing and at the next site, they asked us to play, so we played 'off to sea once more' and they liked it and gave us water! then we walked along and the first girl we ran into wanted to hear us play and was saying how she didn't bring her guitar, but she wished she had, and so we went up to her camp and played a few songs. she joined in on a couple. then a guy said they were having a bonfire at the beach so we went down there and sat and played a little bit. People drank a lot of alcohol. we ended up having to drag our fearless leader back from the beach.

the weekend almost ended on a sour note, with rain Sat. night, early sunday morning. but by the time we got up, it had quit and we packed up all our wet stuff and packed everything back up to the cars, which left us time for one more surf session which was great because the crowd had yet to come out, although the waves were a lot smaller. but it was fun and after an hour or so, i'd had enough and we left.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

house resolution 676

I'm guessing most of you have already seen this. but if you haven't then click on this link to send a message to your US representatives to tell them to support the bill for universal health care.

The grid has been energized

I learned about FTG only about a week in advance. However, I did my best to spread the word.

The idea and energy behind Fire The Grid were and are exciting to me. I went into it with no expecations and yet, unimaginable expectations. That is, i hoped for a supernatural experience as percieved by my everyday senses, to communicate with the beings that communicate with Shelley, perhaps?, who knows, but didn't want to be too disappointed if nothing happened. Here on the west coast of the US, the time for firing the grid was 4:11am. I was up by 3:50.

I'm not an experienced meditator, but that is how we passed the hour, by meditation. We didn't listen to Bradfield, although I had downloaded it a few days prior. I had a really hard time emptying and "stilling" my mind. I thought about sending positive vibrations and energy into the ground, into the core of the planet. I thought about doubts and fears of what if this collective intention somehow backfires and does damage because we don't really know what we're messing with, and then that those kinds of negative thoughts are the ones that need to be banished. I thought about all the people I know and love. I thought about the oneness of all things, about how we share the same dna as plants. I thought about what could be, if only... I thought about our little project Corvallis Open Forum and whether it could become a part of mainstream culture...interspersed with trying to simply still the mind. I thought about Wayne Dyer and Ilchi Lee and other visionaries like Marianne Williamson and Barbara Marx Hubbard, and whether they were participating. And I wondered what my wife was thinking, or experiencing.

Nothing supernatural happened. I went back to bed after 5:11 sleepy and tired. I didn't feel energized, personally. In fact the whole rest of the week I felt tired. We celebrated a birthday, worked and watched korean tv on the internet as usual. I checked my blog and emailed as usual. I checked the global consciousness project to see if anything registered there, but couldn't find anything. A summer rainstorm settled in for the week.

On the upside, the next day, Sunday, we went to the coast and I caught some the best waves surfing that I ever have. It was perfect being back in the lineup (where the swells just begin to break) riding the rhythm of the ocean, in the primordial element, water, enveloped and yet a distinct part of the great singularity. Yesterdays (7/21) Corvallis Open Forum was well attended and included a number of new speakers, and this year's DaVinci Days festival has been a beautiful, inspiring event.

I'm finally getting around to checking out what has happened since. And whether project cause has been "launched", etc.

I'm very curious to know about other's experience.

I should close by saying that even though my greatest expectations were not met during the fire the grid moment, I'm nevertheless committed to creating a better world, one where everyone has a seat at the table, where everyone is taken care of, as in the tribal mentality that Shelley spoke of. And I realize that its going to take a lot of effort and change for that to happen. I also realize that the mainstream is reluctant to change, especially when it comes to consumption patterns, which i see as a large part of the problem. I am also cognizant of the colossal powers that be and have no illusions that the current rulers of our society have not only the means but also the motivation to crush any kind of people's movement.
Having said this, I believe in our collective capacity for creativity to pull off the necessary changes, the mechanisms, as it were, for the transformation to happen peacefully and quickly.

In peace and solidarity I submit this testimony.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Simultaneous Meditation, Healing

my friend dan sent this along and it looks interesting. if you have a free hour, as i'm sure you do, at 4:11am pacific time (11:11 greenwich mean time) on the 17th of july, then take an hour to contribute to the healing of the planet.

check out the website
http://www.firethegrid.org/eng/home-fr-eng.htm

the way i see it, its kind of like the scam about bill gates giving you 10G for forwarding to everyone on your email list, only its not a scam its positive, possible, and you've got nothing to lose. i do think its possible and as you can tell from my link list, wherein i have linked to the global consciousness project, i'm not coming at this lightly.

what's an hour for real global healing?

lets do it!!

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

family ties

i received an email from my cousin recently who is also struggling with disgust with the status quo and the challenge of affecting real social change.

i wondered earlier about the mystery of the People's lack of outrage, he replied questioning the existence of democracy and whether people believe it does anymore. indeed, the (il)logic of this blatant fact is readily apparent. i say illogic because to any rational person it doesn't seem logical.
"if there is a democracy, then why would there be a social elite? why would the top 1% of our country control a third of our national wealth, and the top 10% control over 70% of all disposable income? the thing is, to me it all comes down to money..."
Absolutely. it doesn't have to be this way is our point and that of many others. us bottom feeders can simply rise up and claim our slice of the pie, at least for our own healthcare. i'm really interested to see what happens post "sicko".

-
and when people are so busy just trying to make it through another day, they just don't seem to have time, energy, much less the knowledge, to start making some changes - because with each new change comes another period of instability that must one must get used to, at least until it stabilizes.

yes, after working our ass off all day, the last thing we want to do is educate ourselves about the world we live in. if its not tv then its beer, liquor, name your addiction. i think we can minimize the instability by careful, "faith"ful planning. We need to ask ourselves, what are we working so damn hard for?

Cousin goes on to illustrate the seeming impossibility of changing the system without a massive collapse. i think that's why it needs to be a numbers game. it simply won't happen without enough people. but thats going to require a lot of people waking up and smelling the coffee. The movements typified by MLK and Gandhi still represent a positive step, imho.


coincidentally, i'm reading a fantastic book... by howard zinn, a people's history of the united states: 1492 - present, that, if accurate in its accounts, reveals our country's history to be very different from the way it has been taught to us from a young age. much more importantly, though i can't say for certain, not having finished the book, but if our origin is truly different from the way we believed it to be, then the chances of our country functioning like we believe it to be is very slim as well.
first of all, that not a coincidence at all. this book is a milestone in my personal "awakening". and lets face it, you don't just stumble onto h. zinn. i think we're on the right path. if memory serves me, zinn wraps up the book on a very hopeful note, which i hope you'll get to soon. maybe i got this from him, but as long as we have the... hallucination (call it what you will) that the country is founded on the lofty ideals we've been taught, then we still have ground to stand on. Indeed, i think our best bet is to wrap ourselves in the constitution, the declaration of independence and yes, the flag, to create not only a better nation, but a better world.

I'm trying to protect your identity, so i edited alot, but its really good to know we're not alone. thanks for a great email.

Saturday, July 07, 2007

sicko

go watch this movie. we just watched it and i think it is high time we have universal, free health care, just like canada, britain, france and yes, cuba.

this is not a new position for me, but hopefully it will be for many many americans.

Thursday, July 05, 2007

reclaiming our sovereignty

national initiative for democracy

did a quick net search on mike gravel after seeing him on the pbs debate of a few days ago, and ended up at this project/proposal. i think its a brilliant idea and i hope it works.

check it out.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

osu/corvallis nuke

another article from tom

Nevin, K.S., OSU's "Nuke" a Local Cause for Concern, Corvallis
Gazette-Times
, 7'3'07.
http://www.gazettetimes.com/articles/2007/07/03/news/opinion/6edi02_nevin0703.prt
I've visited the reactor before in a science class. Everyone i've spoke with says "trust me" its very safe. well, i'm no nuclear physicist, so i guess i'll take their word for it. right? WRONG!

its bullshit that insurance companies will not cover damages due to a nuclear incident.

if its so safe then why is our local law enforcement practicing for some such event?

the only absolute guarantee to be safe around this stuff is to shut it down.

i wrote a letter to the barometer many years ago describing how vulnerable the building is to an attack. if you drive by it on 35th you will see what i mean. a couple chainlink fences, one with barbed wire. yeah, like that's going to stop someone with nefarious plans. give me a break. barometer never printed the letter.

anyone know the history of how the reactor came to be?

living so close to the damn thing, i'd absolutely rather it not be there at all. lets get rid of it and put up one of those giant wind turbines. we might not have the greatest wind resource, but we have SOME wind resource that we waste all the time.

and whats the deal with the new energy center?


Monday, July 02, 2007

right to free speech

some passersby at the forum mentioned that speech calling for the overthrow of the government is not protected by the first amendment, is this true? didn't jefferson say that it is the people's responsibility to create a new government if the present one isn't working on their behalf?

libby granted royal mercy

who am i to question the almighty emperor of the world?

well, for starters i'm a citizen of this country and if this isn't proof positive that the system is broke, that the country is run by a bunch of good ol boys who have a very narrow definition of "we" which certainly doesn't include the lot of us, i don't know what is.

meanwhile, the people who leaked v.plame's identity are still doing their thing. plotting to take over the world. and i'm not exaggerating or kidding. that's precisely what they're doing. i don't blame them. the fact is, the opportunity is theirs for the taking, thanks to a somnabulent population of sheeple and a brainwashed base. but that doesn't make it right. america has become an empire ruled by elites in which there is a guise of democracy. america has veered off course and it is up to We the people to correct our collective course. where is the rule of law?

impeach bush now

Sunday, July 01, 2007

michael moore on NOW

the "must see tv" link in my list will take you to the NOW website. this past week, Brancaccio interviewed Moore. This episode is a great example of why i call it must see tv. Moore is brilliant. say what you want about him, but imho, he nails it on the head.

America has a "me" mentality, whereas just about every other civilized nation, the people have a "we" mentality.

i can't wait to see sicko. even if i have to give carmike my money.

bill moyers journal was excellent this week as well.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

excellent article for all average joes and janes

http://www.tompaine.com/print/taming_corporations_gone_wild.php

thanks again to tom for the link.

please read this article and do something to express your thoughts.

by posting on my blog i assume my agreement with it is understood.

Monday, June 04, 2007

the following is my comment in response to a series of comments at dan's blog. a person called blamin insists that it is impossible to feed the world using organic farming.

of course we could feed the world organically and less chemically (petroleum) intensively! it can be done and it will be done.

all we need to do is focus our society's energy on replacing the drug of choice, up til now petroleum, with a new drug, a new energy source. or perhaps our original energy source, the sun.

considering the advances in technology that we've seen in just the last twenty years, can you have any doubt that if we tried, as in man-on-the-moon type tried, we could become 100% renewably powered in twenty years? i know we can do it if we try. getting "us" to try is another story.

it seems to me that what we have now are fat cats milking obsolete resources dry and are delaying the inevitable at the public's expense. in terms of energy and in terms of organic farming. i don't blame them, the fat cats, that is. i mean afterall, they have the implicit consent of a frantic, paranoid, sleazy, cheesy, shopaholic, clueless population of the governed. and they have the ability. wouldn't you do the same? freedom for everyone, especially the ones with the most money and power to forever increase their share of the money and power!
(yes i'm being sarcastic)

is there any argument that industry lobbyists literally write legislation (ie, how to grab taxpayer money and/or re-write the laws to benefit them and their friends) in our US Congress?


blamin, we can try, indeed. i totally agree that having all the answers is not a worthy goal for me, or society. but we have to sort the wheat from the chaff. we must decide for ourselves as a society, many issues of immediate consequence in countless lives around the world. i don't grant the bush administration one ounce of credibility. the great w, bush II, emperor of babylon, why should i? after being lied to so many times, there comes a point that you don't take seriously anything that comes out of his mouth.

Friday, June 01, 2007

how can peace overcome war?

or perhaps more appropriately, how can the peace movement overcome the war establishment? the peace movement is a relatively dispersed diaspora whereas the war establishment is just that, firmly established in the world, in terms of infrastructure: buildings, plants, equipment, weapons, and of course the personnel and money. how many people's livelihoods does it really support?

but more in general, how does a non-violent society prevail over a violent one? its no surprise what the result will be when a conflict becomes escalated. the violent become violent and people die. the fact that the peace movement even exists is a victory worth celebrating considering the history of our great nation!

of course our strength lies in our numbers. i'd like to see a poll of americans who actually love war. who relish and delight in death, pain and misery.

war doesn't just happen. in this day and age, one person's decision can set into motion a mighty army of cabinet appointees, generals, lawyers, corporate executives and their legions, and an army of volunteer patriot soldiers who seem to be getting tricked into thinking that their sacrifice will guarantee membership in the club, or at the very least the best healthcare that the richest nation in the world is capable of.

thinking in terms of the eons that have passed in which humans have slaughtered each other, do we really have any hope of creating a lasting peace? sure, why not? having hope is as simple a choice you can make, either you decide to have it or you don't. but i really feel that considering all that people have thought up, in terms of technology and democracy, in particular, there is every reason to expect that humanity can begin an age in which war ceases to exist. we have proven ourselves to be a very capable species. lets focus now.

first solar dish of the season



well, its that time again folks! time to break out the solar oven and use the sun's rays to cook. since the solar oven is essentially a low(ish) temperature slow cooker, we're making chili (again). i keep saying one of these days i'll bake something, but so far it hasn't happened yet. i better go out and see if the angle is right.

maybe i'll even post a picture if i'm really industrious!