Posts Tagged ‘human rights’

St. Patrick’s Day

17 March 2021

Today the 17th of March is St. Patrick’s Day.

Two years ago when the bars were open, the streets were full of people celebrating in the ancient Irish tradition of drinking beer.

The namesake of this holiday was a Christian preacher trying to convert the “pagan” Irish. I suppose all that is swept under the rug now. Irish culture today retains many of its ties to its pre-Christian roots.

I may add to this later. The image is from the yellow caboose sitting in the historical park in Old Sacramento.

It’s Time To Talk

24 January 2021

A lot of us were expecting some revelations to go public last week. They didn’t. Perhaps it’s time for me to speak up about all of this.

Lies

DOCO and Old Sac were BUSY today! The weather wasn’t even that warm. But people seemed eager to get out anyway. As I was walking back home, the security guard who has befriended me stopped me.

He said, “Don’t you think this is too soon?” He pointed to all the people eating outside at the restaurant.

“You mean, it’s too early in the season?” I asked.

“No!” he said. “I mean the pandemic isn’t over yet!”

“Really! I thought the pandemic ended 6 months ago.”

“Oh man,” he said. “Now you’re messing with me.”

I recently went over what the most popular lies propagated by the mainstream are. My view, of course. And I know there are some readers who absolutely can’t go along with my truth. OK. But I am trying to make a point about how life works and how I work, not convert you to some new religion.

Can we agree that almost ALL of the mainstream is basically pushing the same message about many important issues? On top of this, there is a whole package of assumptions being forwarded by the mainstream through language, ads, and snarky comments. These have to do with things like UFOs, non-MD healers, mental health, and other very important topics.

Can we agree that there are people – lots of people – (roughly half the population in the case of the last election) who are at the least offended by these mainstream messages? Can we agree that it is unlikely that fully half of the population is totally deluded? Might it not be possible that they have been exposed to some information or experiences that contradict the mainstream story? Do we really have no interest whatsoever in why their truth is different?

So: If a person like me, who has always been a serious (and mostly straight-A) student, thinks he is being lied to by the mainstream, why should he believe anything written or spoken there? And where is he going to find an alternative that might be less false? Obviously, his first choice would be someone else who also believes that the mainstream is lying. So, that’s what I did.

Facts

For nutritional advice, and for non-allopathic approaches to illness, I go to Dr. Joseph Mercola. He is a very popular writer in the field of nutrition, and became radicalized when he and his friends started getting attacked when they expressed their misgivings about certain vaccines that were being developed, in particular the one (HPV) given to girls to prevent cervical cancer. Mercola quotes studies and other experts, as well as giving some anecdotal stories. He is a very earnest individual.

For general spiritual data, of course, I use Hubbard. But besides him, there are numerous (but not extremely numerous) academics working in the field of parapsychology. And for the best data on Earth’s history, I go to Courtney Brown’s remote viewers, who work under the umbrella of the Farsight Institute.

I am missing many more minor sources that I have consulted. I use these people mostly because they present their data calmly, they all believe in Spirit, reincarnation, and ET. They don’t concentrate on how flying saucers work or speculative subjects like that. Simon Parkes should be mentioned. He had some personal experienced with certain ETs. He was involved in politics for a while and he decided to make his ET experiences public. He got elected anyway. He is currently reporting a lot on data he is being fed by someone inside the mythical (but actual?) military group working to preserve our Constitutional Republic.

What things are really temporary

Games in bodies are relatively temporary things. They last as long as the planet lasts, or as long as the civilization lasts, if it is space-faring. According to human memory, some such civilizations have lasted for a very long time. Somehow, they did enough things right to survive. One group specializes in taking over planets and then mining them out of existence. They survive because they have learned to live on space ships.

Certainly a lifetime is temporary, and we should all be very clear about that. When we leave this life, most of us are programmed to return automatically. That would suggest that most of us have minimal control over the details of our rebirth. A few of us seem to have much more control in this area.

The tried and true model for operating a “Space Opera” planet is what I call Corporate. It is a hierarchical management structure that can operate an entire planet, if that is what is desired. A good Corporate structure does not need “capitalism” or “free markets.” Corporate has existed on Earth for a long time in a number of different forms. It has sometimes hidden behind the “conservative” values of competition in business, and economic growth. In other guises it has hidden inside Communist regimes. The most brazenly Corporate entities today, like Google and Amazon, openly seek to be monopolies and to squash competition. They are basically very practically-oriented power structures. They are designed to get things done, and that can include all the functions normally associated with other social institutions like schools, banks, governments, entertainment, even churches.

The above data is based partly on human recall of how earlier Space Opera societies operated. We also have present time data from remote viewers about how those societies operate today. Commonly, Corporate prefers slave-based systems. They are considered easier to manage. Earth is special because we are the misfits that were rounded up and removed from those societies. So to implement a full Corporate pattern on this planet is a real trick. It is, however, being accomplished.

The promotion of a dependence on experts has been crucial to their success here. It has allowed human rights like free speech to be challenged or cancelled on the basis that expert data is clearly superior to debate and argument. They, of course, pick who are the “experts.” This has been inculcated particularly in the fields of education, body health and mental health. It is backed up by turning certain chosen scientists into opinion leaders (marketing spokespeople). The general public are overwhelmed by the scope and depth of knowledge of these people. It is a pretty easy sell.

Crime groups also use a Corporate structure, and there is lots of evidence that “dirty” and “clean” corporate entities are peas in a pod. Professional hit men are routinely used by Corporate if they want to make a point that everyone will notice. Corporate favors the proliferation of drugs and poor personal habits, as – while these are bad for business – they are good for assisting to keep the “problem” people under corporate domination.

The pandemic

The story that falls through the cracks that exist in the false narrative about the pandemic paints a picture of this event as one they have been waiting for and planning for a long time. That there appears to be some ET interference and foreknowledge of this event indicates to me that ET wanted to throw Corporate a bit off guard so that its role in this whole thing would be more noticeable.

Therefore, it is possible that it was not originally intended for the virus to be traceable to China. ET forced a lab accident to occur, which created an outbreak there. So China – a very Corporate-like nation right now – got wrapped up in all this when it hoped it wouldn’t. The links of big names like Fauci and Gates to financial interests in China and Big Pharma reduced their aura of having the moral high ground.

Per one article, the Infection Fatality Ratio for COV-19 in children, by actual statistics, is about 1 death in 100,000 infections. For people my age it is about 1 death per 1,000 infections. These figures are of course subject to how well the reports reflect reality. Infection mortality rates climb with age. But so do healthy mortality rates. The measured death rate of a person my age for any cause is 2 per 1,000 people. So catching this disease is half as risky as just being alive! To what extent does an infection simply assist the death of someone who was ready to go anyway? And if an infected person has “multiple comorbidities,” who’s to say which condition actually killed them? We also have the question of what treatment was given and how effective it was. Many effective treatments have been suppressed by Corporate. Presumably because they would be less profitable.

And we also have the question of whether the number of cases (infections) is being properly reported. The PCR test at a cycle threshold above about 20 does not really detect infection, but only the fact of viral residue in the nasal cavity.

Although the CDC continues to insist that masks make a difference, real world data cannot be found which supports this claim. Cases rise and fall with testing rates and seasonal patterns, regardless of what social distancing policies are enforced. That is what real-world experience is telling us.

Thus, we are being locked down for reasons other than COVID; and we are being lied to about it by the mainstream. I wish there were some way to make this even more clear! It’s not about Public Health! It appears to be about enslaving an entire planet. This is the usual and expected pattern. Laugh at it at your own expense. I would much prefer you take this seriously and help make more people aware that they are being robbed of their basic human rights and that the intention is to make this permanent.

What things really survive

Regardless of planets, illnesses and death, Spirit survives.

Spirit will thrive to the extent that it is aware of what is really going on and is confident in itself.

Thus, you can “break” Spirit by lying to it all the time and not allowing it access to all the data and not letting it think for itself and decide for itself. This is our mainstream world: A “conspiracy” against Spirit! This is very obvious to anyone who travels with companions who are interested in spiritual awareness and spiritual growth.

Spirit enjoys playing a game. Living in a body on a planet is one possible game for Spirit. But it is not the only one! Besides all our prior games, there are certainly many more possible ones that we haven’t thought of yet. Spirit is happy if it can create new games to play. The duration of a game is not necessarily that important.

A worthwhile long term goal

In the long run, we want to be more aware, knowledgeable, and competent. These factors will serve us well for millions of years into the future. They are the factors emphasized in Scientology, and to lesser extents in all spiritual practices. In the long run, having any spiritual practice is better than having none.

Happiness is not Earthbound. Happiness is “the overcoming of not unknowable obstacles towards a known goal.” It is the result of playing any decently-conceived game with some degree of competence. It is possible anywhere, any time, and for anyone. Happiness is indeed a worthwhile long term goal.

Civil Rights in America

2 January 2021

Pertinent previous posts:

Understanding Human Rights

More on Human Rights

The Emotion of Hate

The Course

Hillsdale College is a private college in Hillsdale, Michigan. Founded in 1844 by abolitionists known as Free Will Baptists, it has a liberal arts curriculum that is based on the Western heritage as a product of both the Greco-Roman culture and the Judeo-Christian tradition. Hillsdale requires every student, regardless of concentration of studies, to complete a core curriculum that includes courses on the Great Books, the U.S. Constitution, biology, chemistry, and physics.[5]

Since the late 20th century, in order to opt out of federal affirmative action policies, Hillsdale has been among a small number of US colleges to decline governmental financial support, instead depending entirely on private funding to supplement students’ tuition.

Wikipedia

One of the ways Hillsdale promotes for donations is to offer free online courses and put the people who sign up on their mailing list.

The course I took consisted of a brief historical overview of civil rights in the United States. It contained 9 half-hour lectures, and some quizzes to act as memory tests.

I think four different professors contributed lectures to this course. It was not particularly intellectually rigorous, but reasonably thorough. The information was given not totally dispassionately. These people believe in Christian values and the traditions of human freedom as outlined in America’s founding documents. This was a facts and theory course – typical of the liberal arts approach. It was not training – not designed to teach a skill – but only to relay some historical facts that most agree to.

The Problem

The most obvious problem in America has been that black folks have been forced to take a back seat in American life ever since they were forced to move here from Africa, or later chose to come here. Not all the “seats” allotted to persons “of color” have been particularly uncomfortable or different from other seats, but the majority have definitely been located near the back.

What a focus on America, or the United States in particular, fails to notice is that this has been a pattern the world over for a very long time now. This was not just a phenomenon of New World colonization; it happened in Africa – including some black-on-black exploitation – in the Middle East, in India and in Indonesia. It happened anywhere that dark-skinned people lived and thought they were in control of the territories they inhabited. And something similar happened to the oriental people of the planet, particularly in Japan, Korea, the coast of China, and Southeast Asia. Something similar also happened in Australia, though the experience of aboriginals in all regions usually felt more like genocide than mere exploitation.

On top of that, slavery had been a tradition in many societies, including old Europe, where white slaves were also known.

These are problems that run deep in the fabric of human relations and human history. In fact, they run deep in the history of this universe. It is a game that groups have been playing against each other for a long time. This problem has supplied the intellectual and emotional fuel to many modern stories, notably Star Wars.

In covering just the U.S. aspect of this problem, the wider context is overlooked, and of course the big questions of why remain unaddressed.

Beyond the course: Causation

The course started with the U.S. founding documents and the moral paradoxes surrounding them (that some of the authors – Jefferson in particular – were slave owners). It went on to cover the intellectual debates that led up to the Civil War, and then all the various political maneuvers designed to retain white supremacy, particularly in the South. I should make it clear here, in case any readers are unaware of this, that real segregation laws existed in the United States. They mostly existed in the Old South, but not exclusively. And though today the United States can be considered one of the most free and equal countries on this planet, it is still obvious that it is far from totally free and equal. Furthermore, there are many countries on this planet where the racial proportions are very different than they are here, and thus the political and economic dynamics are different. Yet no country exists on this planet – to my knowledge – where this problem has been totally solved.

I see the essence of this problem expressed in the contents of three references listed HERE. These are under the top heading, Ponerology (the study of evil). These were originally written references that have been made into narrated videos.

Evil is not innate in people, particularly. But it is an old solution to an old problem, and a bad habit that just won’t go away. The intellectuals of this planet think that rational discourse could eventually handle evil thoughts. It can’t. Evil goes way beyond the realm of rational thought. This is like thinking that you could find some rational way to change how your heart beats or your hormones work. The tendency towards evil is built in at a very low level of human thought.

Where you find a being convinced that living a life of evil is his only option, you get what we modernly refer to as a “sociopath” or a Suppressive Person. The technical reasons for why a being would make such a decision are found elsewhere, though mentioned in the references linked to above.

This decision results in a being who habitually neglects the lives and feelings of other people, as he believes it is necessary to do this for his own preservation. Such a being is very convinced of this! And where he has attained some measure of intelligence, his motives and methods can become quite devious. He will attempt to play up any obvious differences in the people around him to get them to fight each other instead of him. Race is a very obvious difference. Sex is another one. The smart sociopath will latch onto just about any theory or narrative that could result in constant racial or sexual turmoil. The sociopath also has no problem viewing other living people as mere animals and thus subject to enslavement or summary execution. There are even stories circulating that some sociopaths are cannibals, though this is not confirmed.

It is easy to blame the profit motive (Capitalism) for the various resulting atrocities, as Marx and his followers did. Or “whiteness,” as some modern misguided theorists have claimed. “Colonialism” is another favorite target. But what seems closer to the truth is that a criminal clique has developed, and been nurtured, on this planet, and that its leaders and minions are for the most part white men. These people operate through various legitimate channels, such as big business, the news media, and the entertainment industry, to attain their goals and purposes. And though they are a confused and disorderly bunch, some “higher force” seems to be keeping them on track, and this has resulted in considerable suffering around the world, but specifically aimed at non-white groups, so as to fuel the narrative that this is all about racism or whiteness. It isn’t. It’s about social fears at a most profound and basic level. It is about people who are quite sure they would perish in a world where everyone else was friendly and peace-loving, instead of at each other’s throats.

Remedies

Where causation is accurately identified, remedies can be formulated and enacted. This, of course, is the last thing the sociopaths want to happen, though in the long run it would also benefit them, by providing to them a route to healing.

Unless we can detect the social personality and protect him from undue restraint, and detect also the anti-social personality and restrain him, our society will go on suffering from insanity, criminality and war. And Man and his civilizations will not endure. These are the words of my teacher. Consider adopting them as your words, as your way of thinking, as a possible answer to the problem, a possible remedy.

The thought leaders at Hillsdale College, as well as many others in schools and churches and businesses and even governments around the world, are very concerned about where our planet is heading. They don’t realize how deeply the lies of the sociopathic cliques have affected them! There is a way forward. At least one way. Take it!

Freedom of Speech?

16 December 2020

I’m talking strictly on a symbolic, non-verbal, level: What does this image convey to you?

I say: Muzzled.

What Am I Looking At?

15 September 2020

In an 8 April 2020 press release, the Human Rights Foundation condemned non-democratic regimes for using the pandemic as a way to stifle dissent.

“Even under a state of emergency, states must ensure individual liberties such as freedom of expression are safeguarded. The use of incitement and defamation laws to persecute those who speak freely violates the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.”

Human Rights Foundation senior legal associate Roberto González

The press release ended with these words:

“As autocratic rulers use this health crisis as an excuse to expand their hold on power, HRF remains committed to uniting people in the common cause of defending human rights and promoting liberal democracy. This is a critical time to take action and prevent authoritarian regimes from further diminishing individual rights.”

What about democracies?

The HRF has always made the point that tyrannies typically close down free speech entirely, thus making it difficult or impossible to find out what is really going on in those countries.

We should value, they emphasize, the benefits we have in the Western liberal democracies (and any such countries located elsewhere) from being able to say what we think and report on questionable government activities without immediately being arrested, thrown in jail, or killed.

I find it a bit odd, then, that the censorship we have been experiencing in (for example) the United States is not brought up by the HRF as a bad sign and steps in the wrong direction.

Widening the view

As I attempt to widen the view beyond the issues of government control, as important as they are, my allies on these issues tend to scurry away, like rats in an alley that is suddenly illuminated.

In a 13 June op-ed, HRF’s strategic advisor Jenny Wang danced around some of these issues, concluding:

Against the backdrop of a global decline in human rights and freedom, the voices of corporate America – and the resulting impact – can be even louder and more powerful. If consumers demand that the brands they buy lead with democratic values and uphold fundamental human rights for everyone, regardless of race or nationality, they have a chance to truly make a difference.

HRF op-ed

These activists have a problem. In the West, “social justice” issues are being championed by intellectuals trained in postmodern psycho-social theories developed by people who want to revive Marx’s dream of a true democracy, where the working man actually holds the balance of power collectively. Yet the movement is being supported by big business!

I consider the Marxist dream to be seriously flawed. People need real leadership, and I don’t think we can survive well without a management class as well as a large community of small business people who have as much freedom to think and create as we can possibly give them.

The new “social justice” has turned against this more realistic vision as too “colonial.” Yet they welcome the funding they get from both new and old members of the ruling classes, through groups like the Open Society Foundation (Soros), the Ford Foundation, Cisco, Airbnb, Door Dash, and many video game companies as well as others.

Meanwhile, those concerned with losses of liberty as a result of the (former) pandemic have been pointing to the World Health Federation. Supposedly a U.N. agency, it is heavily funded by the Gates Foundation, which is invested in the vaccine solution to infectious disease. Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus achieved his post with the help of the (totalitarian) Chinese government and a political party in Ethiopia, Tigray People’s Liberation Front. This party currently holds power in Ethiopia, attained through military action against the previous dictatorship. It currently boasts (on Wikipedia) 80,000 “fighters.” It was openly Marxist until the Soviet Union fell. It is now nominally democratic.

Big business embracing Marxist idealists? Global bodies being run by communists? What it going on here?

The new tryrants

I have recently been exposed to a lot of data concerning the political aspirations of establishment Medicine. The W.H.O. is obviously part of this establishment, if not at its apex. Adhanom was trained in the U.K. (though he is not an MD).

Establishment Medicine was basically created by the Rockefeller Foundation in the early 1900s. With the help of influential academics, alternative forms of healing were pushed out of the mainstream and forcefully replaced by Rockefeller’s brand of allopathic (drug-based) medicine.

By the 1940s, psychiatrists were heavily involved in medicine, thanks to the Eugenics campaign, and similar propaganda work. When someone (usually attributed to academics connected to the Intelligence Community, such as Allen Dulles) decided they needed to conduct a program of secret research into the general subject of “mind control,” a select group of psychiatrists were right there, willing to pitch in. The various projects engaged upon under the umbrella of MK-Ultra caused considerable harm and suffering to those unfortunate enough to be the subjects of its experiments. Many of the doctors who worked on those projects are considered today by medical reformers like Dr. Peter Breggin to be sociopaths and murderers.

And so, in countries where outright tyranny is not in fashion, such as Western Europe, the United States, and various other states across the planet, the job of tyranny has been carried forward on the shoulders of medical practitioners.

A plan announced 80 years ago

And thus, a plan launched by John Rawlings Rees in 1940, which he later promoted as the first president of the World Federation of Mental Health, has been moving forward.

“If we are to infiltrate the professional and social activities of other people, I think we must imitate the totalitarians and organize some kind of fifth column activity.”


“…We have made a useful attack upon a number of professions. The two easiest of them naturally are the teaching profession and the church, the two most difficult are law and medicine.”


“Let us not speak in terms of ‘mental hygiene’ but in terms of ‘mental health.’ …Let us all therefore very secretly be fifth columnists.”

J. R. Rees, “Strategic Planning for Mental Health” from Mental Health, Vol. I,
No. 4, October 1940, pp. 103-106 – selected quotes.

As Andrew Lobaczewski, Polish researcher into the origin and spread of evil in governments and other organizations, pointed out: Positions of power tend to attract people who depend on authority, rather than hard work and good service, for their survival. Thus, a society that does not stay on its toes can easily be overrun from the “top” by elevating sociopaths to high positions, then failing to remove them when they betray themselves through criminal activity.

Confusing scene

Thus we see Western “social justice” supported by medical tyrants and the new breed of big businesses.

We see traditional conservatives, previously supporters of big business, now wondering how the scene went so far south, and calling for a restoration of basic civil rights – traditionally the favored issue of the Left.

Someone, it appears, is being opportunistic. The Left accuses the Right (Trump) of this, while the Right accuses the Left of it. They seem locked in contest, like two bucks vying for the opportunity to mate with the does.

I am not convinced this Right – Left conflict has any depth. Bucks, I am told, seldom really hurt each other when they fight. It makes a good show, a kind of smoke screen, obscuring the fact that criminals are continuing to take over the West, already quite entrenched in many countries, usually under the banner of “communism” “Marxism” “liberation” or “revolution.”

And though the people these criminals manipulate may be sincere, they themselves are not. If this conflict dies down, they will find a new one to fan into flames with slanted news and financial support.

Going forward, our basic security and ability to operate according to our own best judgement will depend on our ability to detect tyranny and repel it before it takes complete control. Many parts of the world are already lost, at least for now. And the West is sinking fast. That’s the way I see it.

Missing Threads

30 August 2020

Spoiler alert: The missing threads are:

  1. Criminality.
  2. Mental technologies.

I’ve been immersing myself in a lot of “popular culture” lately. I re-listened to the BBC’s version of Asimov’s Foundation trilogy, as mentioned earlier. Yesterday I watched most of a three-hour event in Utah that happened very recently. And this morning I watched a three hour video dissertation from BBCer Adam Curtis that he has titled Hypernormalization (2016) after a concept put forward by a Russian writer at the time that the Soviet Union was collapsing. Curtis also created a set of videos about modern psychology and Ed Bernays called The Century of The Self (2002).

I have also recently watched several videos concerning the Critical Theory problem in academia and the resistance to Intelligent Design in biology.

This post has to do with what I see as missing from these stories. I’ve already stated them above. In Foundation, psychology plays a prominent role in the story, but criminality does not, except in the character of the Mule, a mutant with special psychic abilities. And that doesn’t count. Asimov, as do most serious historians, treats criminal activities as a part of human nature and otherwise disregards them.

The Utah gathering was about loss of freedom due to lockdowns and other related events, and what to do about it. It featured Del Bigtree, the maker of several recent films pointing out weaknesses in modern medical institutions. That event avoided the subject of mental technologies. One of its principle organizers is an ex-psychotherapist. She was packing a side arm that day.

And the long video concept piece, brought to our attention by Joseph Mercola (MD), tried to explore the intersection of these two threads without really mentioning either of them, treating the whole thing as a sort of hopeless inevitability, a part of a pattern that we might never rise above.

The Ethical Story

The story being told from an ethical point of view focuses mostly on:

  1. Loss of civil liberties. Stated as rights, these include the right to a fair trial, the right of movement unless properly charged with a crime, the right to freely congregate and speak your mind, the right to vote or abstain from voting, and the right to participate in governance.
  2. Loss of wealth. Stated as rights, these include the right to own property and the right to protect it, the right to engage in commerce and the right to work.
  3. Loss of power. Stated as rights, these include the right to life, the right to procreate, the right to an education and health care, the right to some form of social security, the right to express yourself, the right to practice a religion or refrain from doing so, and the right to be responsible for making your own decisions.

The focus in this discussion is usually on government.

But who, really, doesn’t want us to have civil liberties, wealth and power? The criminal. All these threaten the criminal much more than they do honest men. And criminals are contributing enormously to these losses, both through corrupt governance and otherwise. The focus of the Utah gathering was on the apparently sudden increase in the power of doctors. But they couldn’t explain why docs were suddenly so eager to rule, although a connection to Big Pharma was clearly seen.

The Technical Story

Suzy, a therapist.

When told in terms of technologies, the story tends to focus on their failure or corruption:

  1. The failure of the political and legal systems. Such as in the case of unjustified deaths, and the failure of police to control rioters. And in the failure of elected representatives to listen to the voice of the people, or to reason.
  2. The failure of education and academics. As in the over-politicization of teaching, disastrously incorrect research getting published, and academic people getting fired for speaking their truth.
  3. The failure of medicine. Their apparent inability to figure out what to do about any of the coronaviruses. Their neglect of nutrition. Their apparent arrogance regarding non-medical alternatives that seem to work better.
  4. The failure of the business world. To keep its ethics in and its products and practices safe and effective. The apparent sacrifice of lives for profit.

Society is full of incorrect technologies. We know that now, at least. It is the ethics problem that keeps better technologies from being used. That’s because criminals are afraid of people who are honest, intelligent, healthy and productive.

The answer to failed justice is Ethics Technology. The answer to failed schools is Study Technology. The answer to failed health is Auditing Technology. The answer to failed business is Management Technology.

All these technologies exist and are is use. But they are not in wide use because of the undue influence of criminals in all these sectors.

Per Ron’s analysis, the main vector for corrupting society was the false technology of “modern” psychology.

In justice and law this favored a “victim” / Big Brother approach. In education this favored leniency, pampering students and false study methods. In medicine this favored the bio-medical model of etiology and treatment. And in business this favored consumerism, entertainment in place of real production, and deception in advertising.

I am not trying to be thorough here. This just gives you the general idea. We know that “psychological warfare” is widely used in politics. But states have become similar to large corporations. They seek profit and continuance over the general welfare. Likewise, medicine now serves criminals, and is marketed with some of the most dishonest “science” ever seen. Science itself is not far behind, especially biology, where Natural Selection has long since been disproved, yet Intelligent Design is ridiculed as a religious insurgency.

It is as if the rulers, whoever they are, float along in their own little world, untouched by the concerns of everyday life. That’s no way to stay in power!

Patching the hole

Do we patch the hole or get a new pair of pants?

Revolution now would result in the loss of what remains of our garment!

We must attempt to keep things patched up until saner people are in place to take over. Learn how to do a Touch Assist or a Locational! Learn how to clear your misunderstood words!

The new world looks different, I think. We will have to solve some of the riddles that our founders wrestled with, and handle some of their blind spots.

I see the need to reshape our vision of business, and multinational corporations in particular. These organizations are too big to escape the guiding principles that we use for governments.

Religion will be reborn with a new recognition of the existence and power of the spirit. The concept of God will likely live on, for spirit had to come from someplace. We, on the other hand, will have to take responsibility for the creation of this universe. That was not God’s work, it was ours. And in owning the universe, it can finally come under our control to a much greater extent. We will really need that in the coming millennia!

Look ahead! There waits eternity. Why wear the same old torn up pants when you can make a new pair?

Meanings of Freedom

25 August 2020

Let’s talk about freedom.

I’ve mentioned it before, such as in my article on human rights and in a related article.

Freedom is one of the three elements of games, along with purposes and barriers. A “fun” game provides a good balance between freedoms and barriers, as well as having a purpose that the players see as worthwhile.

Evolution of civilization

I recently reviewed the story of The Foundation by American writer Isaac Asimov. I used the BBC radio drama for my review, figuring it would take less time (8 hours) than locating and reading the original books. I wanted to remind myself of the role of the library in the story. I had remembered the records in the library as consisting of silver discs, but the BBC version describes them as microfilm.

In the Foundation series, Asimov lays out a version of a theory of the evolution of civilizations that was gaining popularity in his day. It deals with the tensions between freedom, power and the technologies of power. It is a bit simplistic, but the basic concepts still survive.

Each new technology, as the theory goes, begins with a freer time and ends in a tyranny, as the next technology of power begins to take hold. Asimov started with the technologies of brute force, then of trade, then a return to brute force assisted by psychology, then to some form of psychology-based society that would no longer require brute force and its dehumanizing tendencies. The essential freedoms sought in these stories were: freedom from tyranny, freedom to trade as one pleased and freedom to amass wealth unhindered by criminal claims against it.

Artist’s idea of a great intergalactic library.

Devolution of civilizations

The actual story of “civilization” seems to take a rather different course.

I cover it briefly in Understanding Human Rights. The game devolved from a high-freedom, low-barriers sort of free-for-all towards a low-freedom, high-barriers super-controlled system. The control factors (barriers) included threats of violence, secrecy, the creation of an inability to remember, and the cultivation of a lack of self-awareness, as well as the technologies of “mind control” and propaganda that so thoroughly enthrall this generation.

Here on Earth we are somewhere on this downward spiral (called that because of its similarity to how a damaged airplane spins out of control as it crashes.) We in fact seem to be passing through a transition period between having more freedom on the internet and having less. Other freedoms were doing OK in the US until the pandemic came along. Now our freedoms to move around and to work for a living have been greatly restricted for some time. This is a very bad sign.

Traditional freedom

The “classic” freedoms of the Enlightenment were centered around a newly-established freedom of speech and a commensurate limitation of government to punish this freedom. Big business was not seen as an important player in those days – big mistake.

It was thought that combining basic freedoms of thought with a limited government and the right to bear arms would be enough to create a workable balance between rulers and the ruled. But this balance was already being compromised by business concerns that were using slaves in agricultural factories and mining. As business became more powerful through technology innovations and the popularity of manufactured goods, those leaders, unhampered by the philosophical constraints of the Enlightenment, sought to establish a modern slave model in whatever way they could.

By the time of the second world war, we have the Chaplain of the United States Senate, Peter Marshall, telling us, “May we think of freedom not as the right to do as we please, but as the opportunity to do what is right.”

With that sly twist of words came the downfall of traditional human rights, even as the United Nations, under the direction of Eleanor Roosevelt, attempted to remodernize and reinvigorate ideas of basic rights and freedoms. Neglecting the rise of power of the business world, we had allowed them a greater and greater slice of the “power pie” with none of the traditional protections our founders had conceived to limit the power of government.

Modern arguments about freedom

Assisting the business world in this takeover has been “modern” psychology and its derivative disciplines. See my article on propaganda.

Rather than bloviate over-much on this subject, I will take one example of this that I have studied. It involves a French man named Michel Foucault, one of many thinkers of the last century to advance a variety of ideas that have been lumped together under the description “critical theory.” A key principle of this approach is that truth is relative, as we have historical proof that “truth” was invented by power groups to maintain their dominance and for no other reason. Thus any “truth” can be suspected as being really no more than a form of political propaganda, and so also our ideas of what is moral and what is ethical. It is all relative to who is in power.

It might be mentioned here, as was made very obvious in the Wikipedia article about Foucault, that he was gay, promiscuous, fond of sadomasochism, supported pedophilia, and died of AIDS, supposedly by engaging in unprotected sex in the gay bath houses of San Francisco.

By the time of his death, Foucault had a wide following in the US due to his lecturing at several college campuses, including Berkeley and UCLA.

To me, his theories amount to little more than attempts to justify debauchery, a lack of any moral compass, and thus, criminal behavior. These then, are the new “freedoms” opposed to the traditional rights and freedoms of the preindustrial era. They arose, we may suppose, from our failure to instill the values of the Enlightenment in the business world, and thus its continued focus on profit, propaganda (psychological warfare), war, and political domination through popular acquiescence and personal threats.

The grasshopper’s dilemma

I don’t know how fitting this is, but I ran across this old drawing and wanted to use it.

As depicted in the old fable, the grasshopper’s dilemma is whether to enjoy the moment and avoid preparing for the challenges of winter, or to waste a perfectly good summer worrying about what almost certainly lies ahead.

Although we know that grasshoppers die off in winter, but their eggs survive to hatch the following spring, if we see the grasshopper’s year as related to a human lifetime, then we see, perhaps, a story of how profligate (criminal) behavior can end in misery. However, these days we are shown, as a sort of model of modern success, how a shrewd businessman (like Bill Gates) can live the good life and also amass a fortune to “help others.” It seems like a model worth aspiring to…if it were true.

Complaints from a New Age psychiatrist

Kelly Brogan is one of the prettiest and most effective psychiatrists that I am aware of. Her decision to stop using psych drugs in her practice (and preferably no drugs of any kind) and to take on a new mentor (Dr. Nicholas Gonzalez) has led her to practice a “new” form of medicine, and also to radicalize in the face of irrational criticism clearly aimed at nothing more than protecting the status quo. It is also the only reason I would hold her up as any sort of a hero.

Kelly exercised the traditional freedoms of intellectual thought and independent action. This is one of her conclusions:

Spiritual freedom

It is good to know something about the subject of spiritual freedom. While it is not a subject that directly impacts day-to-day life on Earth, it gives us a reference point about what ultimate freedom is and then can, perhaps, inform us as to what might be an ideal balance.

I have not tried to address here the desirability of the “free-for-all” condition that I alluded to towards the beginning of this article. It is too fantastical for this world, and almost certainly would be too chaotic. Yet, in contemplating it, we may come to realize the true agonizing boredom that would be produced by an environment that was totally safe a predicable.

The missing element, of course, in most (if not all) previous analyses of the human situation is the spirit, its characteristics and its history. No other modern thinker or researcher has come close to describing the spirit as well as has Hubbard. That his work remains largely undiscussed is an omission I will never cease to decry. I supplement my references with better-known work when I can, but there is really no comparison. I just want to make that clear.

The spirit, as an individual and a personality, is fully capable of leaving the game of life in a body-oriented “civilization” entirely if he fully desires it. Few really do. Most sort of enjoy this game, at least for now. And beyond that, we are all – for all intents and purposes – trapped in this game for the time being, and have responsibilities and connections that would be difficult to turn away from without moral repercussions.

But that is, basically, the ultimate freedom: To go somewhere and create one’s own space and one’s own game in that space, and to have full control over who may enter that game and likewise to have full control over one’s choice to be involved in any other game that invites players.

I hope the above description gives the reader some sense of how far away we are from that ideal here on Earth. But I hope this also serves as a warning. Do not be intoxicated by the tawdry arguments of the criminals of this planet, who want little more than the “freedom” to enslave everyone else, and so “rule.” Their invitations can sound very alluring. Resist them!

More on Human Rights

21 July 2020

In my attempts to get better informed about the work of the Commission on Unalienable Rights, I looked at some of the videos of testimony which they received from experts in the field. One video I watched was a presentation (speech) made by Thor Halvorssen of the Human Rights Foundation (HRF).

Perhaps Mr. Halvorssen’s defining experience in this regard is given here:

On February 1, 2005, our founder’s mother was shot by the Venezuelan government while she was protesting their corruption in the streets. But no matter what Thor Halvorssen did, no one would take action to hold the Venezuelan government accountable.

Human Rights Foundation website

Here we have a relatively recent example of a modern regime gone suppressive. It didn’t make this transformation as noisily as, say, Germany in the 1930s. But nevertheless, it did.

Venezuela was a developing democracy. But it was also rich in oil. And with those riches (or so it seems), temptations. In fact, the national government had never been very stable. Like all “third world” nations with valuable natural resources, its governments were under constant pressure to grant special deals and play favorites, both in the world arena and locally.

But I do not, in fact, know that much about Venezuela. It is just that this is one of many nations across the planet where basic human rights are no longer protected by legal institutions (if they ever were).

Governments attract criminals

The point I have always made about this is that the general population creates, or tolerates, governments in the expectation that a certain level of organized violence is necessary to protect the people from criminal organized violence so they can get on with life. Governments, then, are the people’s last line of defense against criminal incursions, and so a constant target for criminal infiltration.

If you do not “believe” that such a thing as a “criminal mind” exists, then we have a problem. All I can say is that when people who are able to look do look, they find it. The phenomenon has been reported by so many different observers (even psychiatrists!) that I see no good reason to challenge it.

The idea that the “line” between what is criminal and what is acceptable has been moving over the years in favor of human rights is persuasive, but in the end, hollow. What we say has never matched that well with what we do. And that pertains to criminals in particular. If a criminal thinks that verbal support for human rights will make him more popular or acceptable, he’ll say he supports human rights. But he assumes that all people lie about what they really think, and he knows he does.

Crime and business

Even criminals need some way to sustain themselves, so they either find ways to latch on to more legitimate human activities, or they die.

There are many mechanisms of attachment. Some criminals work to become licensed professionals, then use that license to protect their criminal practices. Others find ways to get rich, then find activities – legitimate or otherwise – to invest in so that they can live off profits without having to work. Some aspire to academic positions where they can have influence in government and industry while avoiding responsibility for the actions taken by others based on their false data. And, some seek to rule.

Though human trafficking was always considered morally repugnant, the fact is that this activity could be indulged in legally up until quite recently in history, in most places. Likewise, wars of conquest. Realize that India was “conquered” originally, not by the British Crown, but by a business operating under a crown charter. This business employed its own soldiers, its own negotiators, its own bureaucrats. This still happens.

But where a business, criminal or not, can work in concord with the government of the territory in which it is operating, such an arrangement can be mutually beneficial.

Business and government

In the end, many of us come to the realization that government is a kind of business. It’s “business practices” are a bit “odd” compared to ordinary commercial companies, but they share all the same basic elements and mechanisms. In such a wise, large governments and large businesses may often see eye-to-eye on many subjects.

It might seem that, considering the above, a culture that wants to do well should very adamantly demand that business and government should remain separated as much as possible. This may be a valid argument, yet most people, in practice, find it just too demanding.

Just as I, in helping my church to gather data about psychiatry – by long tradition an outlaw profession – learn more about its individual members and thus tend to feel more friendly to some of them, so it works in government, particularly where it is mandated to regulate businesses.

Under this same concept, any political philosophy that required government to operate commercial concerns, or cooperate very closely with them, would seem fundamentally flawed.

Socioeconomic “rights”

Scholars of the subject of human rights distinguish rights which are essentially political (such as freedom of speech) with rights that involve access to services that are often provided by the business sector. These are sometimes spoken of when referring to the ‘social safety net.”

The thing about these “rights” which Halvorssen points to is that they can be provided (or at least appear to be) by regimes that do not grant citizens the usual political rights. However, in this wise, the population loses its legal power and authority to correct any socioeconomic omissions. He assures us that this has actually happened in places like Cuba.

These “rights,” then can be held in front of a population like a carrot, tempting it to allow authoritarian rule in exchange for their basic freedoms. This is the dilemma of the slave. That the authoritarian usually lies in this regard is often overlooked by persons who wish to be charitable to authoritarian regimes, particularly ones that seem to embrace “socialism.”

The proof, however, is in the pudding. And if the population is not allowed to speak and report freely on what is occurring in the streets and towns of the nation, then how are we supposed to know if the pudding is worthy of praise, or a total disaster?

Full version of my featured image, a drawing done in high school.

Slavery

On July 27, 2018, the Human Rights Foundation released a report entitled Authoritarianism and Trafficking in Persons.

Modern slavery is an odd phenomenon. The planet now is more or less fully populated. Three are plenty of people in every region, country, of the world, to do the work needed to produce items for local consumption and for trade. Yet living conditions are so bad in some areas that many people would rather leave as slaves than stay. I don’t think this was true of the old African slave trade to the New World. My impression is that most Africans back then were forced into slavery on pain of death. Nowadays, slaves can be procured using advertising techniques.

Modern slavery, though illegal, is for the most part operated by business-like groups, just as it has always been. Suppressive regimes assist mostly by tolerating these activities, creating conditions that people wish to escape from, and providing labor pools in the form of detention camps or similar operations. This is not to say that authoritarians do not benefit financially from these activities. But if they are true criminals, this is not even their major purpose in life. They are afraid of other living beings, and wish them to suffer, which makes the suppressive person feel safer.

The report gives three examples and also discusses the U.S. role.

In modern China (though this may have been going on for centuries, since it also happens in Japan), refugees from North Korea are used as slaves. In North Korea, people who wish to leave and succeed, if later captured, are kept in prisons. They may later try to leave again. Meanwhile the prisons function more or less as slave camps, propping up the North Korean rulers. In China, enslaved people work as sex slaves or merely domestic workers, or factory workers.

In modern Cuba, Cubans are trafficked into the U.S. and other places for a variety of purposes. Cuba also serves as a relay point for some countries in Africa. Cuba presents itself as a “spiritual” country, materially poor, but happy. But it is deeply involved in the modern slave trade, and the HRF reports that its leaders personally benefit from that trade.

In Thailand, an authoritarian regime allows fishing businesses and others to enslave workers from its own country as well as people from other places. Some of those products I am sure end up in democratic countries like Japan and the United States.

This report gave these three examples. I can only imagine how difficult it is to extract true data from an authoritarian country. The people there are under constant threats of reprisal if they complain. But we know very well that many other countries have similar problems. Per an HRF analysis, which is updated every three months, over half of the population of earth lives under authoritarian regimes, and so are subject to impoverishment and slavery with no legal recourse locally.

"poverty"
Two color print from linoleum blocks, made in junior high art class.

Is the planet lost?

Things look really really bad to me. But that doesn’t mean that the situation can’t be turned around. After all, all those enslaved and suppressed people come back after they die, and perhaps some of them will end up in a place where they have more freedom and opportunity, will remember, and will be able to help all the activists already working on this issue to do something about it.

However, we are headed into a techno-machine world that has traditionally depended on slavery to operate. This is because life in such a place becomes so intolerable that people will only stay if they are forced to. Though experiments were made to see if a population, Matrix-like, could be lured into a sort of “happy slavery” using entertainment and other gimmicks, this does not seem to work that well, at least not on Earth.

How do we preserve sanity as our population expands and our space contracts? Though our current Secretary of State can proudly say that the United States still “leads the way” in the field of human rights, that’s not saying much. We stand today as a huge consumer of illegal drugs, slave labor, and other items and services produced by criminals. And it is not the State Department that can solve that problem.

List of rights

Though it seems like an afterthought, the rights in the Universal Declaration (see HumanRights.com), are listed below in a shortened form used with children:

1. We Are All Born Free & Equal. We are all born free. We all have our own thoughts and ideas. We should all be treated in the same way.
2. Don’t Discriminate. These rights belong to everybody, whatever our differences.
3. The Right to Life. We all have the right to life, and to live in freedom and safety.
4. No Slavery. Nobody has any right to make us a slave. We cannot make anyone our slave.
5. No Torture. Nobody has any right to hurt us or to torture us.
6. You Have Rights No Matter Where You Go. I am a person just like you!
7. We’re All Equal Before the Law. The law is the same for everyone. It must treat us all fairly.
8. Your Human Rights Are Protected by Law. We can all ask for the law to help us when we are not treated fairly.
9. No Unfair Detainment. Nobody has the right to put us in prison without good reason and keep us there, or to send us away from our country.
10. The Right to Trial. If we are put on trial this should be in public. The people who try us should not let anyone tell them what to do.
11. We’re Always Innocent Till Proven Guilty. Nobody should be blamed for doing something until it is proven. When people say we did a bad thing we have the right to show it is not true.
12. The Right to Privacy. Nobody should try to harm our good name. Nobody has the right to come into our home, open our letters, or bother us or our family without a good reason.
13. Freedom to Move. We all have the right to go where we want in our own country and to travel as we wish.
14. The Right to Seek a Safe Place to Live. If we are frightened of being badly treated in our own country, we all have the right to run away to another country to be safe.
15. Right to a Nationality. We all have the right to belong to a country.
16. Marriage and Family. Every grown-up has the right to marry and have a family if they want to. Men and women have the same rights when they are married, and when they are separated.
17. The Right to Your Own Things. Everyone has the right to own things or share them. Nobody should take our things from us without a good reason.
18. Freedom of Thought. We all have the right to believe in what we want to believe, to have a religion, or to change it if we want.
19. Freedom of Expression. We all have the right to make up our own minds, to think what we like, to say what we think, and to share our ideas with other people.
20. The Right to Public Assembly. We all have the right to meet our friends and to work together in peace to defend our rights. Nobody can make us join a group if we don’t want to.
21. The Right to Democracy. We all have the right to take part in the government of our country. Every grown-up should be allowed to choose their own leaders.
22. Social Security. We all have the right to affordable housing, medicine, education, and childcare, enough money to live on and medical help if we are ill or old.
23. Workers’ Rights. Every grown-up has the right to do a job, to a fair wage for their work, and to join a trade union.
24. The Right to Play. We all have the right to rest from work and to relax.
25. Food and Shelter for All. We all have the right to a good life. Mothers and children, people who are old, unemployed or disabled, and all people have the right to be cared for.
26. The Right to Education. Education is a right. Primary school should be free. Our parents can choose what we learn.
27. Copyright. Copyright is a special law that protects one’s own artistic creations and writings; others cannot make copies without permission. We all have the right to our own way of life and to enjoy the good things that art, science and learning bring.
28. A Fair and Free World. There must be proper order so we can all enjoy rights and freedoms in our own country and all over the world.
29. Responsibility. We have a duty to other people, and we should protect their rights and freedoms.
30. No One Can Take Away Your Human Rights.

The New Barbarians

8 July 2020

This began with the question, “What happened in the 1800s?” You can see a timeline of events on my other blog, if you wish to familiarize yourself with the period.

The featured image is of my 1980 girlfriend wearing an Indian costume for Halloween. Sorry, sweetheart, it was the best illustration I could come up with!

Themes

Certain themes stand out for the period, also known as the “19th century.”

  1. Empire
  2. Technology
  3. War
  4. Genocide
  5. Exploitation

If our only problems were Empire and Technology, I would be relatively happy. However, they always seem to be accompanied by the other three. Always…always.

Empire

While the concept of Empire was slowly dying out in Europe, it was slowly growing in the United States.

In Europe, the most notable players were the Germans, Austrians and Prussians. Britain (the “United Kingdom”) of course actually maintained the grandest empire throughout this period. But you could see that it had grown weary of the endless struggle that seemed to be involved in maintaining unquestioned domination.

Not so, the Americans! While Europe consumed itself in seemingly endless conflict, starting with the Napoleonic Wars, America looked westward with the utmost enthusiasm.

The concept of “manifest destiny” was concocted to convince the power-happy overseers and the power-hopeful underlings that they were all on exactly the right track. While the aboriginal peoples looked on, shook their heads, or fought against it, and died.

Technology

Though we like to think of our electronic age as the quintessence of technical innovation, it does not match the amount of pure force leveled against the environment by the inventors, industrialists and armies of the 19th century.

Ushered in by the Age of Steam, gasoline power was already well on its way to dominance by the end of the 1800s.

Dynamite was invented. The use of structural steel, replacing wrought iron (Eiffel Tower), became more and more common in civil engineering.

Several agricultural machines were invented and put into use during this period, as well as the typewriter, the sewing machine, photographic film and camera, the phonograph, electric lights, and finally, motion pictures.

Psychology also took its modern form – a sort of behavior modification technology – towards the end of this period.

Still, most Americans were using the good old fashioned firearm to get people to do what was requested of them. Major bank and train robberies began to show up in this period.

War

Europe seemed constantly embroiled in war during this period. If it wasn’t Napoleon, it was the Turks (Ottoman Empire) or the Germans, or Austrians, or Prussians. Or maybe, sometimes, the Russians (Crimea).

In the U.S., there was the War of 1812, the Indian Wars, the Civil War, and the war with Mexico over (mainly) Texas, and the Spanish-American War. It seems our Army, Navy and Marines were constantly busy.

Troops also helped capture Hawaii for the United States, so that Dole could sell his pineapples in America duty-free. And if you think there is any other reason Hawaii is a U.S. State, look again!

We also wanted the Philippines and Cuba, but we only got Puerto Rico and Panama, as well as Florida. California, etc, had been captured earlier from Mexico.

Genocide

Empire, it seems, has never been averse to genocide. In the U.S. this meant, at first, the Native Americans, then later, black slaves – now freed. There were also other ethnic minorities involved, like the Chinese. Meanwhile, the Irish kept having problems with the British, presumably because they wanted to remain Catholic.

This was also happening to indigenous peoples and ethnic minorities in South America, Australia, Africa, and Europe.

Exploitation

Though much of what happened along these lines is covered under Genocide, we can often see beneath the killing the lust for resources that seemed to be inspiring it.

During the 1800s, this was still expressing itself mostly through agricultural commodities. According to Wikipedia, forest cover in the U.S. dropped from 990 million acres (estimated) before westward expansion to about 700 million acres at present. This was mostly in the form of clearing the land for monoculture (a newish term for one-crop industrial agriculture).

We also have a lot of mining going on in the 1800s (copper, iron, coal) which has always been a very polluting activity.

The 1800s also saw the rise of the “modern” labor movement (now entrenched in some areas and threatened in others). In those days, leading a labor protest was considered a treasonous act.

On top of that, all of the Americas used black slaves. It is difficult for me to decide exactly how much black slavery was driven by economic incentives, and how much by some deeper, uglier need for an ultimate “underdog.” The Hindus of India had their “untouchables” for thousands of years before Europeans figured out how to steal Africans for enslavement in the Americas. Why didn’t the white upper classes just work harder to enslave the white lower classes? I am guessing that someone decided that using Africans would be a better plan.

Now that that’s legally over, other forms of enslavement, such as debt slavery, are having a comeback. We also have “newer” forms of exploitation now, based on the “pioneering” work of Wundt and his “psychologists” which began towards the end of the 1800s. Now the powers that be can replace blatant lying and blunt force with “more refined” techniques of persuasion. Doesn’t make it any less criminal, from my point of view; maybe even more criminal. If someone pointed a gun at you, you could at least shoot back.

What of the Arts, Literature, Theater, Academia, the Civil Rights movement?

The best way for a wolf to hide is by donning sheep’s clothing.

People, left to their own devices, would include plenty of enjoyable activities in their lives, if history is any guide. The ruling classes have always appropriated the arts as a kind of escape, or cover, from what must be their raging consciences. After all, leadership is necessary. (I actually agree with that.) If it becomes difficult or unbearable, well, too bad – it still must be done.

In my brief search into the 1800s, I found that Jefferson had hoped that slavery could be abolished in the United States by the beginning of that century. The beginning! Slavery was a huge issue from the very beginning of the Union of States! Lincoln tried to handle it, but then he got shot. And, by force of social pressure, slavery was replaced by its somewhat obvious precursor, racism.

Racism was already a “science” by the beginning of the 19th century. But that – it seems to me – was only done to give racists better talking points. Even Jefferson, apparently, was oblivious to the fact that blacks had totally identical capabilities to whites, until he made the acquaintance of an educated black man in 1791. He marveled at this as some sort of revelation!

And so (need I mention it) it continues to this day. Some sort of seething madness remains alive in the population, seemingly incurable, seemingly impossible to wipe out.

The new barbarians

But when all is said and done, the United States became the home of the new barbarians. The United States now spends more to defend its political position in the world using military might than the next ten largest nations combined.

defense spending comparison courtesy Peter G. Peterson Foundation

And that’s only the military expenditures! What about propaganda, and other technologies of control? The “mental health” system in the U.S. makes over $200 billion a year. Could that be one of the newer methods? Total annual “health” expenses in the U.S., by the way, are over $3 trillion.

“Barbarian” comes from a Greek word imitative of unintelligible speech. The Greeks originally applied the term to the Persians, a culture of roughly equal stature to theirs (if not higher). The Romans, as their culture decayed, applied the term to the various tribes trying to move in on their lands. The great cultures of history (after they stopped being so great) have always been swept away by “barbarians” who in turn developed the next “great” culture. Is modern Western culture really that superior to that of the ancient Persians? Certainly, for most of us, it is more comfortable. There is something to be said for that. But will that comfort alone get us to where we need to go? Of course not!

The challenge

The chance we had – made possible in part by our new-found level of comfort – was to reach beyond the old hackneyed attitudes and expressions of our predecessors to find a new understanding of the human condition which would lead, for once, to a real improvement of the human condition. That chance – I fear – is quickly running out. I, for one, hope we make it. And if that makes me a “barbarian,” so be it.

Footnote

In viewing a newly-released report from the Commission on Unalienable Rights (established last year by Secretary of State Pompeo), I became interested in the distinction between the words “inalienable” and “unalienable.” I was reassured by grammarist.com that the words have identical meanings, and the different prefix reflects a change in English that occurred – are you ready for this? – in the 1800s. The article about this referred me to the nGram for these words:

Odds and Ends

28 September 2019

feet-on-the-train-20190928-058

This weekend the high temperatures fell below 70 (F). But I got on the train for my usual ride up to Folsom. They were getting the streets ready for the annual Farm-to-Fork Festival, featuring food, drink, and entertainment on the Capitol Mall, just blocks from where I live.

At some point in the ride, a young lady – very cute and wearing short shorts – boarded the train and sat down sideways in a seat a few yards in front of me. I couldn’t resist getting a photo of her feet sticking out into the aisle.

American River Parkway

As the Parkway goes into autumn mode, the scenes there are mostly predictable, but with little variations due to the season. The geese are flying around more and gathering on park lawns more. In this shot I also caught a ground squirrel standing at his burrow.

geese-and-ground-squirrel-ARP-20190928-071

The four does I had noticed earlier were split into two pairs today. One pair was right at the bike trail. I am surprised they come that close, but they must be a bit acclimated to humans nearby.

deer-ARP-20190928-074

The late-flowering yellow asters are about the only flowers left in these woods now. The big-flowered ones are particularly showy, but their range is very limited – that is, I only see them in a few places.

yellow-flower-ARP-20190928-061

The taller plants with all the flowers near the top are more ubiquitous. One field where they predominate is very bright with them right now. And I saw many more on my short walk over to West Sac.

yellow-aster-ARP-20190928-066

A new yellow flower joined these usual ones today. It is called Sundrops, or sometimes Evening Primrose. This one may have escaped from cultivation, as it is rare in the wild here. But it is a perennial, so once established it should continue to grow.

sundrops-oenothera-ARP-20190928-086

The Festival

I have been out of this scene for so long, it is a bit difficult for me to understand why these events attract so many people. It’s as if these people are constantly looking for “things to do” and ways to spend money. I don’t have to look for things to do or ways to spend money. My various interests keep me totally occupied. But that does not seem to be the case with most of these folks.

farm-to-fork-festival-balloon-lady-20190928-139

In this typical scene, we have beer being served in the background, and a street entertainer making balloon shapes for kids. The glass of beer in the hand of the woman in the foreground is typical, if anything, a bit small.

On stage at the bridge end of the Mall (nearest the river) a blues-rock act named Samantha Fish was performing.

farm-to-fork-festival-Samantha_Fish-20190928-102

This stage – and I suppose the performers using it – was underwritten by Bank of America. The festival is free to get in, so it must make back its operating costs from the sale of alcoholic beverages. Beer is extremely popular in this area. It probably is everywhere and I just have never paid that much attention.

Drake’s Barn

And thus another activity quickly becoming popular in this area – Drake’s Barn. This place has only been open for about a year now. Drake’s makes beer in San Leandro and has another taproom (bar) in Oakland. The Barn is located across the street from a housing development aimed at up-and-coming young people. I am guessing most of them work in Sacramento, as it’s very close to the main bridge that connects Sac and West Sac.

The Barn will be hosting a show of “electric art” next weekend, mostly light-oriented I think, and I plan to go over and check that out. So this weekend I walked over to the location to see exactly where it is and how long it takes to get there (about 20 minutes).

The place was full of kids playing – I guess that’s just part of the amenities there – while parents sipped their cold ones. I wondered what sort of lives these people lead, and what their futures will be like.

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Above you can see “The Barn” in the background. It is an odd-shaped flowing building made of numerous wood planks. Here’s a closer look, from the rear:

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I was keeping track of the time by taking pictures of my phone. However, I had my camera set wrong on this one, and the phone instead worked like a mirror.

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On my walk back, I glanced over the side of the bridge at the bank below and saw two cats there. I’m guessing they are feral cats. The one I caught licking itself in particular looks a bit scary.

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World Peace Day

An event earlier in the week at my church was a small presentation commemorating the International Day of Peace, officially observed each year on 21 September. This was started in 1981. Costa Rica had a lot to do with getting the U.N. resolution written.

The guest speaker at our church event was Edrine Ddungu, formerly of Uganda. He personally witnessed the terrorism in Uganda instigated (apparently) by Idi Amin. His own father was brutally murdered, at which point he was quietly sent to live in Kenya and finally made it to the U.S. where he wanted to study at Sacramento City College.

He told us that his desire to play a leadership role in promoting interfaith cooperation and non-violence comes mostly from his desire to continue the work of his father. He is currently president of the Interfaith Council of Greater Sacramento.

The situation in Africa

Uganda could be considered to be at the center of a very bad scene in Central Africa. I don’t understand it well, but it probably has partly to do with a breakdown of civilization in Africa that occurred in ancient times which has been followed by criminal meddling from outside players ever since. The Portuguese were the first to arrive on the Atlantic coast. They almost immediately started slave operations there. But slave operations on the eastern coast of Central Africa (Indian Ocean) had already been active for hundreds of years, and these were non-European operations.

There seemed to have been an almost world-wide agreement that Africa offered resources that could be freely taken advantage of by any group that had sufficient organization and weapons. And that has been the pattern ever since.

All Mr. Ddungu can do now is return yearly to his home country with a bit of money and educational assistance. The general situation in the region is still largely out of control.

The continuing violence in Africa seems to be fueled both by a complete lack of moral compass on the part of any of the major players in the region, and by increasing demand from the rest of the planet for the various commodities that are produced there.

Of the handful of people who attended the event, several were not particularly aware of how brutal and desperate the situation in Africa has been. We saw the great advances made in South Africa and thought that perhaps the rest of the continent was on a similar path. Though this may some day come to pass, it certainly is not the current situation.

However, getting reliable data on what has really been going on in the region has been nearly impossible. So my characterizations of the current scene are guesses based on reports I have been able scrape up or ran into. I am not a student of African politics or economics. But to say that part of the world is in definite need of sanity would be an understatement.

Earlier in the year, Scientologist Tim Bowles had visited us to talk about his work in Africa. He described the experience of meeting with the leader of one of the many African extremist groups. The man was at the emotional level of a teenager, mainly interested to know if Tim had met any famous Hollywood personalities. These people have stars in their eyes. They think they can become rich off the world’s dependence on various strategic minerals found in Africa. My guess is that they care about little else.

While Tim has had some success at starting real human rights education in Central Africa, it seems to me that until the companies that deal with African suppliers demand compliance with basic standards of human decency, people there will continue to suffer.

It’s our job, then, to get to those companies and change their minds about how they deal with Africa. That racism has nothing to do with this is very hard to imagine. Yet racism is just another manifestation of the insanity we are confronted with on this planet. We must make the people we can reach saner. If we don’t, this planet will be lost.