Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Question

How is it that those who are concerned that government can be bought want more government?

If I currently have to go to the butcher shop, produce shop, dairy shop, and bread shop to get my food, is it not MORE efficient if I can go one place and get everything I want?

People who demonize money makers are doing one of two things: 1) planning to destroy them, and thus the economy, aka Communism; or 2) put the competition out of business so they can make fat profits with no competition, aka Fascism.  Both of these models are anti-free market, and thus exist as polar opposites of true Liberalism.

Motivation

I think those of us who were brought up in the operant conditioning model of parenting--who mainly were punished for actual or alleged failings, usually physically, but certainly by yelling too--find it hard to make peace with the voice in our heads telling us what to do.  It is the voice of a parent who was often cruel, and at least in my case completely lacking in empathy and understanding.

I should lose weight.  I can stand to lose 45 pounds of fat, which would make me a lean, mean 225 (my lean body mass is around 200).  But what I find is some part of me rebels every time I get serious about diet. It doesn't like being told what to do.  That stentorian voice breeds resistance, which is overcome by force.  When this is an intrapsychic conflict is involved, that force is will, which as I have noted repeatedly wears out eventually.

There are ways to deal with this.  I continue to pursue personal growth, and have decided to try visualization again, but I did want to point out that in my view a PRINCIPLE task of life is learning to be on easy speaking terms with, to be friends with, the processes of learning, growth, and mastery.

I hearken back again to John Wooden, who every day pursued perfection gradualistically but passionately.  He taught his young men how to put on socks.  He not only taught perfect guarding, but taught himself how to TEACH guarding, and how to develop better and better drills for it.  He was not just perfecting how to PLAY basketball, but how to COACH it, which included motivation.  He was perfecting how to perfect the process.  If he had done anything else, he would have seen equal success.

This should be the model for all of us, in my view.  He was very healthy psychologically, or at least that is my clear impression.  Could he have done more?  Of course.  I would have added spiritual disciplines.  But if you DO add those, and take his process, you can scarcely do better.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Lara Croft, Part 2

Wow. That was one of the worst nights sleep I can remember.  I think I dozed for about 15 minutes about 3am and again for about 30 minutes around 5.  Surprisingly, I feel pretty good, but there are lessons to be learned.

First and foremost, I am going to hypothesize that video games are a method for dealing with anxiety by consciously invoking it, then creating situations of mastery.  The fight or flight response gives us the power/fear dichotomy, does it not?  I think this seems reasonable.

As Lara, I kept getting killed in really unpleasant ways, which made me mad, which made me go again.  As anyone who has played video games can readily attest, some levels are just damn hard, and you have to do them repeatedly, at least if you are an old geezer like me.  I started playing about 5pm, after pouring myself some tea and feeding my dog, and I awoke from my spell about midnight.  I don't think I walked the dog, and the tea was cold.

That is a powerful focus.

What I want to say about it, though, is it is not play.  It is not the reconciliation of the social instinct with the hunter instinct.  It both creates and provides the solution for acute anxiety.  This is why it is so addictive.  When you finally get through a level, it is a huge relief, but then you want to do it again.  And again.  It fills you with energy, which is why I think I'm not that sleepy, despite having something less than 2 hours of sleep.

But what you are NOT doing is learning to deal with the anxieties of real life in an appropriate way. I was feeling very keenly the  passage of time yesterday.  I was clearing out old clothes and art projects and the like from my kids room, and going down memory lane.  I am getting older.  So too are they.  Their lives are in front of them.  This is a common enough happening for people of my certain age.

And it occurs to me that NOBODY wants to do this mourning, wants to deal with this change, but it is a fact of life.  It is a fact of life if we believe in God and if we don't.  It is a fact of life if we have a fundamentally optimistic mindset, or if we are pessimists.  The former in both cases make it easier, but not effortless.

We have to--I have to--throw myself in the stream of life and let it carry me along.  I have to accept it. This is my task.  And what I did was short circuit that process somewhat yesterday.  I have had more than my share of sadness and change and bereavement.  Much, much more.  But that does not change the facts of the matter.  Happiness is courage, true courage.

I can't say or tell where all these video games are leading, what the long term effects of social isolation and the weird sexual expressions that pornography (that is one addiction that has never tempted me) likely causes will be.

What I know is that the future exists in the future, and that I am capable of living in the moment contentedly and in peace, and can commit myself to doing what I can to build a better future, knowing that I may fail--we all may fail--but waiting to feel that grief, to feel that anxiety, until it actually comes.

As far as me playing these games, I am going to have to ponder if I want this energy in my life.  In small doses, these games are supposedly good for your brain, but me being me, I am going to periodically binge on them, and I have to wonder if Lumosity isn't sufficient.  Of course, I have the Kinect and some dance games.  That might be fun.  It would be at least more social.

Monday, May 25, 2015

Lara Croft

So I finished Assassin's Creed 4, which set up a dichotomy between the authority loving Templars, who had a secret surveillance weapon that allowed them to spy on anybody at any time, and the Assassins, who were understood to be more or less anarchists, although of course the game was not overly developed philosophically.  Not too hard to read commentary on current events in there.

But I was feeling agitated today.  I am starting to engage with the world, and it feels weird.  I allowed myself to disengage after nearly a days good work.  I started up Tomb Raider.  It starts up nearly immediately with very macabre images, with dead bodies hanging upside down everywhere, corpses and skulls everywhere.  I don't know if this is a feature of this series, but it was a bit disturbing to see the imaginative outputs of some very creative and probably young people.

Then I got to thinking about it.  In the game thus far I have seen perhaps 200 bodies, of people who were killed by some sort of sacrificial cult.  That may be on the low side.  Some of these scenes were quite over the top.  We react with horror to sacrificial cults, to human sacrifice.

But we killed some 100,000 Iraqis.  The number may be higher, or it may be lower.  But it was oceanic compared to even the awful scenes in this game.

And there was a lot of religious imagery, Buddhist and East Asian iconography, and it struck me that most of humanity has been crazy for most of human history.  War is craziness, but it has been a feature of human life for all of history.  History was CREATED to chronicle a war.

I get sometimes at a state I suppose the Existentialists would call authentic.  I feel keenly the shortness of life, the perishability of all relationships, and everything we build, and the constant possibility of the eruption of atavism into the order we think we have built.  Our animal natures are unseen by most, and fully tamed by virtually none.

And it struck me what a perfect thing it was that the Buddha came upon a method for NOT being crazy.  Very few of us value the knowledge that is handed to us on a silver platter daily.

I can honestly say I take my Kum Nye practice seriously.  I do the work.  I try to focus.  I try to learn the lessons.  But I can do better.

And I just threw the game away.  The game creators derived far too much pleasure in killing Lara in grotesque ways.

The lesson here, though, is that humanity has always been crazy, at least most of it.  It may be that some tribes of people for periods of time have not been crazy.  The Australian Aboriginals, and maybe some Native American tribes, and some African tribes, and some Asian Indian tribes, etc: some of them may have been largely sane.

But kings are insane. War and violence are insane.  Being stuck in a ritual order is insane.  Being other than happy, connected with people, and engaged with life is insane.

And I think about our troops and the wars we have fought.  I support our troops, but something in me has popped as far as wanting to emulate them.  All wars are tragedies.

We need to secure our borders, harden our grid to an EMP, rationalize our financial markets, develop an effective missile defense system, and vastly increase our HumInt capabilities.  And then we need to bring everyone home. I'm fine with the fleets being out there, but everyone else needs to look after themselves. It somebody attacks us, we hit them so hard nobody thinks about it again any time soon.

But particularly once you realize 9/11 was much larger than we have been told, and that beyond any doubt government investigators both suppressed information and outright lied to get the conclusions they did, then much of the past decade makes a whole lot less sense.

Obvious truth

You really do need to clean out the past to make room for the future.

Being a soldier

As I've said in many ways, directly and indirectly, I identify strongly with the values of duty, honor and courage.  Going the extra mile, and the mile after that, and the mile after that, because it is my job. Now, nobody assigned me this job.  I volunteered, for the simple reason that THE WORK NEEDS TO BE DONE.

Every day, without exception, I wake up trying to solve problems, trying to understand myself, trying to heal, trying to perceive something new about the world, and to dream something new about how it might be improved, how it might be led in a better direction.

And there is a cost to this: solitude.  The one unquestionable benefit of being in an actual military unit is shared difficulty.  Your buddies understand you, and you them, at least in important ways.  Me, nobody understands me.  I am a tribe of one.  I walk through the world largely unseen.  I do manual labor.  I walk in the construction entrance, and use the construction elevator, and spend my days with people who got their GED's.  It's better this way: I feel less misunderstood with people no one expects to do any hard thinking, than with people who theoretically could, but choose not to; who are encumbered with a variety of emotional issues even they can't see; who are enmeshed in a political field which requires constant maintenance and tinkering.

Somewhere, though, there is a tribe of people who will get me.  It may not be in this world, but we aren't here so very long after all.  I'm not feeling melancholy.  It is, I think, a good thing I am allowing myself this line of thought, though.  I have been alone so long I forget there are alternatives, and it's always good to remember alternatives: it is a part of perception.

I was told many years ago by a hot Austrian "don't think so much". In this country especially, people who think too much are not held in much esteem, and as a general rule, those who do identify as "intellectuals" are leftists.  There are not a lot of conservative intellectuals.  But that may change.

At the end of the day, I am what I am.  I am not going to change to suit the winds.  I am not going to change to make things easier.  I am going to continue to do what I perceive as my job, until time takes this job away from me and assigns it to someone else.

Sunday, May 24, 2015

10 of Swords

Can you see why this card would excite me? Other than me being really weird, and screwed up in the head?  Why would this excite a psychologically healthy, but very contemplative person? Answer it for yourself.  Your answer may differ from mine.  That's good.

Guess before you look it up, if you even give a shit.


PTSD

I think PTSD is fully healed when you can survey the landscape of that epic battle, that place where your nervous system failed you through no lack of will, no fault of your own, and see it with curiosity.  This is a connection freed from the chains of horror.  This is of course a follow up/continuation of my previous post.

I will add to this that battles only need to be fought once. They are won, lost, postponed, or cancelled, but only once.  Ever after, you need to be either learning from them, or letting them disappear.  Preferably the first, then the second.

Nothing can be worse than a battle you can't win, and can't stop fighting.  You can't change the past, but it can continue to change you if you give it the power to.

Never impose on yourself a guilt you would hesitate to hang on the neck of someone else.  Excessive guilt is actually a theatrical way of avoiding the responsibility of growing through failure and pain.

Curiosity

The more I grow, the more I realize the value of curiosity.  I truly think, in the end, this is the most important virtue.  It is the virtue which connects you with life. Love, in my view, flows from curiosity, which is the first step in an affirmative life path.

Specifically, what I am realizing is that every grain of our bodies is suffused with experience, some of it good, and some of it what we label bad.  And what I am realizing, in my own healing, is that my task it not just to accept the bad, but to enter into it with curiosity, which, again, is the opposite of trauma.

You have to be able to explore a house of horrors--something from a Saw movie--with openness and curiosity.  It is all gone now.  The terror is gone.  The novelty and newness and unexpectedness is gone.  But it is still there. The memories are still there.  There is a gallery in my consciousness that welcomes me, that welcomes my visiting, that wants to make my acquaintance, that wants to tell me its story openly, rather than through symptoms it is forced to use to capture my attention and maintain its own sense of existence.

The task is to do this exploration, not with fascination or repulsion, but with curiosity and interest.  To CONNECT with it in a relaxed, perambulating way.

My shaking is not going to kill me.  Accepted, it is not that unpleasant.  My task is to "massage" it--to take a term directly from Kum Nye, where mNye means "massage": to loosen it up, to give it space, to let it breathe, to give it life and wings and release it.

I get glimpses of light sometimes.  I felt a powerful rainbow last night, and it made me very sad.  That was a small blink of the home we all come from, and are destined to return to.  It is so hard to remember light, living in such a dark place.

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Freedom

A free society is one in which people are free to speak their mind without fear.  It may and should be the case that for every one viewpoint there is a vigorous counter-point. If I question whether or not homosexual marriages are intrinsically and qualitatively no different from two parent heterosexual homes--and of course I'm leaving aside the fact that homosexual marriages can and do break apart as well (I have no idea what the rate is, or if anyone does)--then I accept, absolutely and with an absolute sense of duty, that someone may dispute this.  All I ask is that reason be used.

Researching this, it appears most studies that Google links to show that the parenting outcomes are equivalent: http://www.apa.org/news/press/response/gay-parents.aspx 

And here: http://www.webmd.com/mental-health/news/20051012/study-same-sex-parents-raise-well-adjusted-kids

Here is a different angle: http://www.slate.com/articles/double_x/doublex/2012/06/gay_parents_are_they_really_no_different_.html

Instead of relying on small samples, or the challenges of discerning sexual orientation of household residents using census data, my colleagues and I randomly screened over 15,000 Americans aged 18-39 and asked them if their biological mother or father ever had a romantic relationship with a member of the same sex. I realize that one same-sex relationship does not a lesbian make, necessarily. But our research team was less concerned with the complicated politics of sexual identity than with same-sex behavior.

The basic results call into question simplistic notions of “no differences,” at least with the generation that is out of the house. On 25 of 40 different outcomes evaluated, the children of women who’ve had same-sex relationships fare quite differently than those in stable, biologically-intact mom-and-pop families, displaying numbers more comparable to those from heterosexual stepfamilies and single parents. Even after including controls for age, race, gender, and things like being bullied as a youth, or the gay-friendliness of the state in which they live, such respondents were more apt to report being unemployed, less healthy, more depressed, more likely to have cheated on a spouse or partner, smoke more pot, had trouble with the law, report more male and female sex partners, more sexual victimization, and were more likely to reflect negatively on their childhood family life, among other things. Why such dramatic differences? I can only speculate, since the data are not poised to pinpoint causes. One notable theme among the adult children of same-sex parents, however, is household instability, and plenty of it. The children of fathers who have had same-sex relationships fare a bit better, but they seldom reported living with their father for very long, and never with his partner for more than three years.
The rest of it is worth reading.  Methodologically, they point to the fact that most studies citing "no difference" depend on the data input of volunteers who are in general better educated than the population as a whole, and who understand the political implications of this work. They are, in other words, arguably not truly representative, and the work--which clearly has a mandate to reach a politically popular conclusion--therefore skewed and less helpful than it could or ought to be.

They go on:

When simply and briefly asked if their mother and/or father had been in a same-sex romantic relationship, 175 said it was true of their mothers and 73 said the same about their fathers—numbers far larger than has typified studies in this area. We interviewed all of these respondents (and a random sample of others) about their own lives and relationships, as well as asked them to reflect upon their family life while growing up. The differences, it turns out, were numerous. For instance, 28 percent of the adult children of women who’ve had same-sex relationships are currently unemployed, compared to 8 percent of those from married mom-and-dad families. Forty percent of the former admit to having had an affair while married or cohabiting, compared to 13 percent of the latter. Nineteen percent of the former said they were currently or recently in psychotherapy for problems connected with anxiety, depression, or relationships, compared with 8 percent of the latter. And those are just three of the 25 differences I noted.

They conclude:

On the one hand, the instability detected in the NFSS could translate into a call for extending the relative security afforded by marriage to gay and lesbian couples. On the other hand, it may suggest that the household instability that the NFSS reveals is just too common among same-sex couples to take the social gamble of spending significant political and economic capital to esteem and support this new (but tiny) family form while Americans continue to flee the stable, two-parent biological married model, the far more common and accomplished workhorse of the American household, and still—according to the data, at least—the safest place for a kid. 

I do not want to render a firm decision here. Indeed, it is not my job, my role, or my right to render a firm verdict.  What I want to underscore with exclamation points is that debate and discussion by informed, concerned, responsible adults can and should take place.  Our children are too important for this to be decided by paid demonstrators doing everything in their power to coerce behavior and law without debate or consideration.  That is the point I want to make. 

Gay Adoption

Let us suppose that the Supreme Court rejects the right of any legal authority anywhere in the United States to treat other-than-heterosexual couplings differently in any respect.  Gay and transgender, and cross-dressing and all other couples have the same rights to adopt and raise kids, and nobody can say otherwise without an expensive lawsuit they will lose.

Let us say 20 years go by, and sufficient freedom still exists for someone to survey the children of these groupings, and they find that there are consistent, negative outcomes associated with being raised in an other-than-heterosexual home.  Let us say there are higher rates of alcoholism and drug abuse.  Since homosexuals are alcoholics and drug abusers at higher rates, this seems not unreasonable.  Higher suicide rates.  Higher rates of depression, both of which already are more common among homosexuals, and in my view not primarily because of alleged "homophobia".

Does the Left take account of these facts and reconsider?  When does it EVER reconsider?

Over 100 years ago, John Ruskin, in his essay "Unto This Last", argued that a minimum wage should be paid to people--a high minimum wage at that--EVEN IF this caused increases in unemployment.  His reasoning: we can only be held accountable for the principle upon which we act, not for outcomes.  He actually said this.

As I say over and over and over, though, Goodness is wisdom, and wisdom seeks the best possible outcome for all involved.  It does not privilege one group and ignore the rest. This is the very dynamic it theoretically opposes, not what it supports (although of course in practice it is quite anti-egalitarian, and quite elitist).

As a society, I feel it is incumbent upon us to give children the very best possible chance of thriving.  This experiment, of course, has not been done, and I cannot speak to its results.

But ask yourself, if you have seen the movie Bird Cage, if that was a healthy family?  Ask yourself if this young man is not wanting to get married in no small measure to establish his own masculinity and heterosexuality in a home dominated by a neurotic cross-dressing homosexual?

These can be asked.  They SHOULD be asked.  This is not unreasonable, and it is not hate.   Hate is making of people objects.  That is not my task here. That is never my task.

The Gay Marriage Non-Debate

There are two things that bother me, not about the outcome of allowing gay marriage, but the process used to make it happen.  As I've said repeatedly, I'm not gay, so I don't care.  Like exactly what heterosexual couples do behind closed doors--and that can get quite weird, too, as we continue to see from the popularity of 50 Shades--it doesn't affect me.

I do care about the future of children, though, who in theory are under the protection of "society", of which I am a member.

Here are my two issues:

1) The debate is not a debate, in the sense that both sides treat the other with civility and respect.  What has happened is that one side--well organized, and well funded, presumably by radicals--has initiated and sustained a campaign of relentless attack against anyone who still believes, now, what nearly everyone believed 15-20 years ago.  We are called bigots if we even question the idea that homosexual couples are in EVERY respect identical to heterosexual couples.  We are called hateful.

We can legitimately question any popular narrative which uses the category "thought crime", which this movement clearly does.  They don't have the power, yet, to arrest and "educate" people who disagree with them, but I get the clear sense that if they did, they would do it.  That is the level of hatred, and narrow self righteousness, and intolerance.

And I was thinking the other day that all you need to indoctrinate/propagandize a population are two things: an Other-Directed populace, and control of the information sources, which in this and most countries would be the universities and mass media.  The churches would be nice, but they aren't there yet, although the current Pope seems willing to play ball on some issues.

How do you create Other Directed people?  Eliminate moral principle.  Moral Relativism is both necessary and sufficient for this purpose.  Once you cannot reason your way to a moral conclusion based on basic principles which are unquestionable, then you are cut adrift.  The only principle, really, that remains in play for these people is conformity.  I have said this often.  They claim to hate hate, but if they use the vehicle of hate--which they plainly do, as you can see in less than a minute if you visit any hard core left wing website--then hate, per se, is clearly not something they reject, or really even have the psychological sophistication to recognize. If somebody tells them to shout because someone is being "oppressed"--even if that alleged oppression is actually the long term outcome of policies they are touting on other days--then they do it.

This is an ugly dynamic, and should be opposed for that reason alone.  I say this based upon the principle that mutual respect and toleration and peaceful dialogue are essential elements in a truly Liberal order, and are necessary for the maintenance of personal and political freedoms.  I can derive this principle from observation.  I need appeal to no immanent element in Reality.  I need appeal to no God.  Simple contemplation and reflection offers this up readily.

And we need to be clear that on the reading of nearly all Christians homosexuality is wrong.  Historically, the wickedness of sodomy was understood clearly.  This makes homosexuality very different from racism.  There is nothing in the Bible that says black people need to be persecuted.  It does reference slavery in the Old Testament, but in those days most of the slaves would have been Semitic, and even those were to be released into freedom every 50 years.  You cannot reference a Bible verse saying a black man cannot marry a white woman, or vice versa.

Thus, the entire enterprise RESTS on an assumption that Christians have NO RIGHT to practice their religion as they see fit. It seems obvious that some of these gays SEEK OUT Christians--PERSECUTE Christians--not because no one else has an interest in practicing their business and making the money their business was set up to make by baking them wedding cakes.  Making the cake is the most obvious thing.  Like every other small business in the Obama Economy, I would assume cake decorators are facing tough times.  The overwhelming presumption is that absent STRONG objections, they will take gay cash as equal in every way to any other cash.

But you really can't compare this issue to the civil rights movement, for these reasons.  This entire issue is very plainly a wholesale and State-sponsored assault both on religion, and the right to freedom of speech and conscience.

2) The violence of this non-debate prevents the very important discussion of whether or not gay-ness tends to be a function of sexual or other trauma. I personally think it does, in a very high percentage of cases.  This does not make it wrong or right, but it makes it a symptom of something which, in itself, creates unresolved unhappiness.  If you take some other symptom, say cutting, there is no moral content to it.  It is a reaction to something that person cannot process.  This does not make it healthy.  It is unhealthy, not in the sense that it does not provide relief to that person, not in the sense that it is not in some respects a healthy reaction to the situation, but in the sense that it indicates something deeper is not right.

I read this study, which could only be published somewhere like this: http://www.orthodoxytoday.org/blog/2013/06/identical-twin-studies-prove-homosexuality-is-not-genetic/

Identical twin studies, in my understanding, are pretty much the gold standard for teasing out genetics versus non-genetic correlations.  You can compare it with, say, this study which no doubt sought to address it: http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn26572-largest-study-of-gay-brothers-homes-in-on-gay-genes.html#.VWBuQ9JViko

But brothers have different DNA.  Non-identical twins have different DNA.  The New Scientist has a clearly left-wing bias.  They still believe in global warming, which in this day and age is farcical, in my view.  The SCIENCE does not support it.

So our best evidence, in clinical work done in the face of an enormous lobbying and bullying machine which no doubt opposed it, seems to be that homosexuality is the result of ENVIRONMENTAL factors.  Given that, as I have chronicled, homosexuals are prey to nearly every negative more than heterosexuals--emotional problems, substance abuse problems--is it not reasonable to at least SUPPOSE that we are dealing with the after-math of some traumatizing event?

And I will speculate what it is: a young 12-14 year old kid, alienated from family and friends, is seduced by an older gay man.  I have read articles by gays--current and former--who have said this was the mechanism of their own sexual imprinting.

Self evidently, child abuse can cause this.

Overall, what I want to say is that no good ever comes from suppressing ANY truth, no matter how painful or difficult, because in the end YOU CAN'T.  Truth always outs, even if in distorted, weird ways.  It can out through pervasive violence against those who disagree with the idea of gay marriage.  This is a psychological defense mechanism: violent suppression of difference.

Goodness is being able to live happily on your own, and taking genuine pleasure in the happiness of others.  What it is not is angry screaming, shaming, threatening, and suppression of honest dialogue.

Friday, May 22, 2015

Selves

I think it could be said that dissociated parts of ourselves are like ghosts trying to get our attention.  It is like they are trapped on the other side of a door, but they can pound on the door, whistle, and otherwise make noise.  This is what creates outwardly irrational behavior.  It is perhaps like they briefly take control of our bodies and make us do and say things we otherwise would not have.

The ONLY way to deal with this is to establish contact with them, through deep silence, and by making the effort to open communications.  I think most people have aspects like this, although it may be limited to trauma endurers.

I just made contact with some part of myself which got over the fence, and is back in-house.  It is like an old and wanted family member.

This all sounds crazy, but the fact is most of us ARE crazy but don't know it, and the only way to go from being crazy while pretending to be sane is to pretend to be crazy while being sane. I believe I am well justified in my view that my reality testing is significantly better than most.

Responsibility

With an actual sense of responsibility comes thoughtfulness.

If there is no thoughtfulness, there is no sense of responsibility.  And with no responsibility there is no caring.

I think one could generalize and say that no thoughtless person can be said to be a good person.  Each will think according to their ability, of course, but it is the effort here which I have in mind.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Global warming, again.

I see the Usual Bastards are pulling the Usual Bastard nonsense.  I want to reiterate that, in my long considered view, NO ONE who knows the actual science is telling the truth when they claim to believe in this mythical nonsense, Anthropogenic Global Warming.  I posted the following on Facebook to address this link:http://www.infowars.com/climate-blockbuster-new-nasa-data-shows-polar-ice-has-not-receded-since-1979/

But I will add this: in the latest Avengers, Captain America tells Iron Man that "every time somebody tries to win a war before it happens, innocent people die.  Every time."

We need to look at the environmental nuts as trying to win a war against a disaster before it has even BEGUN to manifest.  The Earth is as likely to be cooling as warming, but the point is that they have revived the same arguments Malthus made over a hundred years ago, and that Paul Ehrlich and others made in the 1970's.  Even though there is no sign of disaster, the solution must be the same, even if past solutions have already caused mass death and suffering.  The elites, self evidently, need fear none of the results of the policies they want to foist on the rest of us.

And self evidently there are always people in every time and place who crave power for the sake of power, and they are quite willing to ride the coattails of anyone who can hand them a throne and scepter.

I have spent more time than I care to contemplate debating global warming, and as far as I can tell, the only two GOOD data points for being able to tell if any of these computer models are even remotely correct are the maximum and minimum ice extents on each pole, and temperature readings in the upper atmosphere, where CO2 is the predominant forcing agent. Ground based temperature readings are a methodological nightmare, and seem in fact to have been deliberately skewed to yield the results wanted, which is the opposite of science.  


But we can take good pictures from space of both poles, and we can get good, real-time readings of temperatures in the stratosphere without any issues with things like "heat islands", or lack of sensors. By BOTH measures, there is ZERO evidence that accumulating CO2 is causing warming. On the contrary, CO2 EMISSIONS have gone up a LOT since 1979, but the ice has not budged, and we are not seeing anything even close to what would be needed in the stratosphere. 


Anthropogenic Global Warming is a falsified hypothesis. I see no other credible way of looking at it, and my near certainty is that everyone at the core of the thing knows it. Their agenda is other than truth, or saving us from at least this species of environmental catastrophe.

Poem for a Fall Spring Day

I reflected the Autumn,
Mirrored the Summer.
I witnessed winter,
and saw the Spring.

I felt the dryness in the leaves,
and the wet of the rain.

I wandered the Earths winds
an infant Zephyr,
neither going nor coming,
never resting because I never
worked.

Not seeking, not finding, until
I realized my home was Change,
and it was the only home I would ever
know.

Fear

I woke up wondering this morning what would happen to our civilization (by the way, I looked up the etymology of this, and it amounts to "citizenification", or making into citizens, which would bear some interesting observations I don't have time for at the moment; my thought was that it came from city-fication, making into cities) if I could wave a magic wand and eliminate fear everywhere.

Why do people go to work?  In a great many cases, because they fear getting fired.  They fear not having money and shelter.  The gears of our mechanical order would stop working smoothly.  It depends on fear.  Much of what you see built depended in part on fear.  Not all of it: much work happens through creative engagement and interest. This is good.

What would happen in the Middle East?  I suppose the descendants of those who lived in the Ottoman Empire and British Protectorate, and were displaced by a war they supported but lost, would still hate the Jews, because that conflict is about vanity, greed, and hatred, but I wonder if people like those who populate ISIS would not evaporate.  Their whole creed depends on fear.  The entire Koran consists in little but operant conditioning, little but offering rewards to the pious and infinite pain on those who fail to submit to the Islamic structure of behavior and belief.

What would happen in totalitarian states?  Cuba?  What if everyone stopped fearing the government en masse and at once?  What would happen in Cuba, if the massive forces responsible for repressing the many thousands of very justified riots they see--because their system is fundamentally inhumane and injust, and vastly inferior in every respect to our own, as imperfect as it is--stopped fearing losing their jobs and being themselves repressed?  What if everybody rose up against the creatures who enrich themselves by enslaving the masses in the name of democracy, freedom and equality?

What if I had no fear?  What if you had no fear?

Reality would be no different, but our relationship to it would be more honest, and our perception of our actual options broader and deeper.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Growth

What does it mean to accept yourself?  Does it not mean to stop attacking yourself?  And why do we attack ourselves? Is it not a relic of operant conditioning, in which we are (sometimes) rewarded for good behavior, but always punished for bad behavior? You associate pain with failure, with failing to meet some standard.

And to associate, I feel strongly, is to ANTICIPATE.  I think we fear sudden violence more than expected violence, so some part of us generates it before the world can.  We attack ourselves before anyone else can.  And in what does an "attack" consist?  In the spontaneous generation of exactly the psychological and physiological states that would have attended an actual attack.  But the whole thing happens inside your skin.  Unless they are attentive, other people may miss it completely, depending on the severity of the thing.

And the particularly pernicious thing about this dynamic--which I think among other things is clearly a factor in chronic guilt and anxiety--is that reality testing only enters the picture if careful self examination is done.

And I think a lot of efforts at personal growth are affected by the fact that you can't ever be perfect, which means that there is never an end to guilt, until there is an end to guilt.

In my considered view, the first step therefore is to achieve deep relaxation, which implies at least a temporary cessation of attacks.  And I think the sense of being relaxed, unattacked, unguilty, needs to be expanded, and the sense of chronic guilt released fully.

To grow, in a sustainable and organic way, you must give up the idea that you need to grow.  This may seem intellectually contradictory, but it isn't, even on the intellectual level.  You must accept yourself, exactly as you are, knowing damn well that you skipped the workout, ate two bars of chocolate, and still need to send those damn letters.

The self that sabotaged you will ALWAYS sabotage you, in perhaps increasingly clever ways, until you accept it.

And I think we are so used to the notion that a sense of duty (guilt) should compel us to grow that many will feel that I am advocating stasis.  No, of course not.  You know what drives organic, sustained, qualitatively deep and rich growth?  Curiosity.  Exploration.  A light and interested and open connection with life.

I am getting close, I think, to a reasonably comprehensive worldview and personal psychology.  I should add that pain, of course, can also drive people.  But it rarely makes anyone smarter.  To find a way out of the rat's maze, you need to stop and wait for the doors to open, and the signs to light up for you. And you need to be looking for them, and you need to follow them.

Selves

I have some interesting nights.  Clearly, something in my early past just overwhelmed the nervous system circuits, and blew them on both ends.  This is what creates dissociation and is an effect of trauma, aka PTSD.  But I am increasingly realizing this shaking (and other symptoms) is a part of me that is trying to establish communication.

And pondering this, I was reminded of this Sufi story I posted a year or two or three or four ago: http://betweenbothworlds.blogspot.com/2009/02/paradise-of-song.html

I think on one level it represents spiritually something like Plato's Ideal, as applied to our selves.

But I move all day long along emotional/sensory continuums.  I do Kum Nye all day long.  I generate and expand experience all day long, while breathing it in. And today it struck me that if I have an ideal self, it would look different than this self, which is struggling and wounded and often ineffective.  On some level, this thought is a natural corollary of the idea of the Spiritual Self which they teach in the Hoffman Process.  I have multiple selves, even understood purely psychodynamically.

[Edit: what I intend here is that I am repressing both my spiritual self, which is otherwise available: AND my--oh, hell, let's call it the IT (Das Es, kids), after Freud.  I write enough that it should be clear what the range is which I intend.]

The important point, though, is that it is both OUT THERE, and already arrived.  Then: why would not my wounded self be the same? My dark self?  That part of my psyche--where you locate it--which is not readily available to my conscious mind, but which still must be accounted for? Is there not some skeletal, half dead, starved, sick version of me wandering in the rain with a crutch?  Is some equivalent of Miss Haversham (read or listen to Great Expectations) stuck forever in a room with halted clocks?

Would this self disgust or terrify me, if it presented itself directly?  And it occurs to me I need to learn to--am learning to--welcome my nightly adventures.  Just last night I expanded the whole thing mightily.  I was able to take the external shaking internal, so that it was really a species of energetic vibration.  And it seemed it went up, from my navel center, to my heart, to my throat, where it stopped.  I could not pull it any higher.

And of course, there are strong parallels between what skilled trauma practitioners see in treating trauma, and what Kundalini Yoga teachers see in helping facilitate that form of energetic awakening.  My view would be that the two are closely related, with each side seeing the same coin from a different angle.

You cannot reconcile "selves" rationally. That is why it is so hard to learn there.  Rationality can guide you, but you cannot learn an emotional lesson intellectually.  This should be obvious, but it obviously isn't, to many.

Benghazi

I posted the following on my Facebook page.  I really don't view this blog as somewhere to disseminate news that would be available to anyone else willing to make a token effort, but I do view it as a place for original analysis.

What you will note in reading all this is the all documents came from the DoD.  What I infer from this is that they are telling Obama to fuck himself, despite having felt the need to kowtow to his threats and blackmail for some years.

We need to be clear that this administration is the most suppressive, most secretive, most abusive of public acknowledgement and discussion of abuses, probably in our history.  Nixon didn't hold a candle to Obama.  The only competitor is FDR, who routinely eavesdropped on opponents, and used all sorts of dirty and awful tricks on opponents to keep his hold on power.

One can hope that our military understands that the most pressing existential threat to our freedom is the leftwing movement and agenda, as embodied currently by Obama, and in the future by Hillary Clinton, and nearly anyone else the Democrats may propose.  We are threatened with national bankruptcy, and all the economic devastation that will follow it, a bankruptry chosen and planned for the purpose.  We are threatened by a Federal government which is daily transgressing the boundaries prudently set for it by our very astute, very wise, historically very literate Founding Fathers.

No one values the unique experiment which is the United States Republic, can fail to grasp the very real danger we are in, caused by people who in private are very candid about their intentions and means.

http://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2015/05/the-truth-about-benghazi-slowly-emerges.php

Here is the deal:
1) Stevens murder was almost certainly planned well in advance, and Clinton and Obama were told this the day after the attacks. They are both fucking liars, and this should matter, even in this degraded age.
2) Weapons WERE being shipped to what became ISIS, from Benghazi.
3) The potential rise of ISIS was obvious even then. Obama and Hillary were cautioned in the following specific language:
"The deterioration of the situation has dire consequences on the Iraqi situation and are as follows:
This creates the ideal atmosphere for AQI [al Qaeda Iraq] to return to its old pockets in Mosul and Ramadi, and will provide a renewed momentum under the presumption of unifying the jihad among Sunni Iraq and Syria, and the rest of the Sunnis in the Arab world against what it considers one enemy, the dissenters. ISI could also declare an Islamic state through its union with other terrorist organizations in Iraq and Syria, which will create grave danger in regards to unifying Iraq and the protection of its territory."
If enough Americans fail to care that our leaders hold us in such contempt that they can be CAUGHT in lies, without consequence, I can't see how our democracy has a future.

Monday, May 18, 2015

Ender's Game

I watched the back half of this the other night in a hotel room, and was reminded of my initial impressions reading the book some time ago, at the strong suggestion of a friend. I think she wanted me to weigh in on the morality of some of the violence, but all I kept thinking was that this book was an extended reaction formation--if I might allow myself to use the term of someone and a system I mostly disagree with--to early childhood events.  A sense of powerlessness.  A sense of being under attack.

And what is that reaction?  Effective violence, and genius, all at very early ages.  Ender was 10 in the final battles.  He had mastered violence, mastered strategy.

As a purely practical matter, most minds and reflexes peak at about 17 or so.  This is the rough age of many Israeli fighter pilots, who are chosen to be the best possible, accounting for all factors.  12 is still prepubescent for most.  The brain has not fully matured.

But emotionally, this must have been a powerful liberation for Card.  And what does he wind up with?  A caring Mother--displaced psychologically by being made an insect--and a de facto child for whom he must now take responsibility, which I would suggest could be viewed profitably by taking it to be his own unrealized self, his own thwarted--but no more?--possibilities.  That egg is innocent.

And I would suggest his brother represents another aspect of himself he is or was wrestling with, another possible path, one not hindered by considerations of empathy and compassion.  These, too, are common enough outcomes of trauma.

We tell ourselves in our stories.  We cannot but do so, and this is a powerfully good thing.  I am telling myself, am I not, in my Rorschach?  It is a good thing that stories are told.  As I near the end of "Great Expectations", I can well imagine how this may have done a great deal to build sympathy and empathy among classes and people in that very cold nation.

But I relate to Ender.  My own reaction, like most, was one of emotional disconnection, depression, a ruthlessly elevated self importance at times, and sense of a loss I could neither define nor express.

I continue to map out hell, to measure its textures and moods, its landscape.  I continue to learn how one lives in hell, how one gets there, and how one stays there.  This is all highly useful information.  I could think of no higher compliment than that which I will offer myself: map maker.

Sunday, May 17, 2015

The Spoken Word

Where fiction is concerned, I see value in audiobooks over and above the ability to listen to them in your car. If my kids were younger, I would likely try--and truthfully likely fail, as I did in fact try something close to this--to get them gathered around for the reading of Dickens.

Good stories benefit yet further from good tellers.  There is a qualitative difference between reading a book, and having it read to you by someone skilled in it.

I am particularly enjoying the ability of this story teller, his name is Simon Prebble, to conjure the endless British accents on command.  What are there, hundreds?  Many, to be sure.  Even Brits would likely have to do their research, but I think he has done his.

As I think I've mentioned, I am also listening to Shakespeare this way.  I had an unanticipated tragedy: I lost the damn CD set--but I will presently be taking my lumps, paying for a new one at the library, and starting anew.

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Little Poem

I am trying to tighten up on my Kum Nye practice, and be sure I get at least 5 good practices done each week.  Toward that end, a little ditty came in my head:

Practice done poorly,
Practice done well:
It is of practice DONE
Which I shall tell.

And I will add a short and mostly not interesting story.  I travel a fair amount, and found myself in New Orleans last week, and sought out a place called Jacque-Imo's, which had a sausage and alligator tail cheesecake I had heard was quite good.

The meal was good, not great--although the place itself is a lot of fun--but sitting there pondering the whole thing it occurred to me that happiest thing that happened to me that day was in my Kum Nye practice, where I often, lately, pull out interesting and forgotten or new emotions.  This is a sort of discovery which is the end goal of physical travel, which does not always yield it.  Quite often, you just move your blindness from one location to another.  This can be repeated endlessly, to no profit.

National service

I have often called to make States the locus of most of our military, leaving only something like the Marine Corps, the Navy, Strategic nuclear capabilities, and SOCOM as our main standing services.  I have wrestled with how to make this a likely outcome without the Federal government forcing it in any way.

I think I've come up with the answer: veterans pay a permanently lower rate of taxes, perhaps in absolute percentages, as well as perhaps being granted more deductions/allowances.

And as I have said a number of times, I envision both military training, and search and rescue training.  Both are useful.

4 Nervous Systems

I was doing my Kum Nye practice the other day, and found myself ascending a long set of white stairs up into the sky.  I reached the top, and there was a layer of darkness hanging there, like a layer in the atmosphere.  I poked my head through, and a voice asked me what I was seeing, why it was dark.

I pondered it, then decided it was because the light of that place existed at a frequency I was incapable of perceiving, and that what we call light is in fact a species of darkness.  I had in mind a quote from the Tao Te Ching: "darkness within darkness: the gateway to all mystery." I was told this was correct.

Then I got to thinking that we have both an unconscious self that arises from remnants of our animal nature as encoded in our primitive nervous systems, but also an unconscious spiritual side, which is what we are moving towards.  We are doubly unconscious--at least, until we cease from being so.

Thus: Immobilization/trauma/sense of belonging/sense of connection with life, fight or flight/play, social consciousness, spiritual consciousness.

Tranformations

I was lying in bed the other night, being attacked by shaking, as I had chosen not to drink, and it occurred to me it was a teacher, and should be embraced.  After this realization, I had a  major insight into my own psychodynamic history come into my awareness.

And I was pondering in the Tibetan tradition how demons and angels are the same; it is the understanding which differs.  And then it occurred to me that when we are presented with demons, it is our job to transform them.  They are uncooked.  It is our job to cook that experience, which becomes useful and transformative in the process.

I keep my ear to the cultural landscape, and have followed at a small distance the work among others of Nassim Taleb.  He has this concept of Anti-Fragility, which I believe was the title of a recent book.  The gist of the idea, as I understand it, is that there is a difference between resilience--which might be summarized as "hard to break"--and something which BENEFITS from chaos and assault.

I don't like negatives.  I don't think it is ever good to include within a word what it is you don't want.  Thus: transformation-capable.  Phase shift capable.  Informationally absorptive and self organizing.

And I got to thinking about this concept of being emotionally "vulnerable".  We assume being emotionally open makes us vulnerable and we are supposed to simply accept this as the risk of living, of loving.

But what if I open to something which tries to wound or kill me, and I am able to process it, and TRANSFORM myself in the process, accepting both hurt and the following growth?  Over time, does my very vulnerability not become a positive virtue?  Is it not what pushes me forward, ahead of the winds of chaos and destruction which hang everywhere over the world in which we live?

Within Kum Nye, the task is to take all emotional "sensations" and open them up, and expand them.  And I saw that if you take a hard thing, and add space to it, you can imagine it like a blown up toy, filled with air in the middle.  You can enter this, and look around.  You can see dots of darkness, and dots of open space.  No evil is fully continuous. And you can expand this, such that the dots of darkness are very far apart indeed.  You can denude the sensation of its impact, its effect.  I have in mind here the Buddhist conception of dharmas as dots or points in a discontinuous universe.

Friday, May 15, 2015

England

I am listening to Dicken's Great Expectations on audiobook, and enjoying it immensely.  Dicken's ability to turn a phrase, and his droll sense of humor I quite like--to borrow from his phrasing.

Listening to it, though, I am struck by English society as characterized by this massive and national game called "Don't piss people off and know your place."  One must always be calculating.  Pip is always calculating.  Nothing is spontaneous.  There is no dancing.  The whole thing is quite grim, and only peppered here and there with clever word play, which is the only spontaneity allowed.  Wit is the only dancing in this world, as thus far represented.

One can feel the need for empire, as a way of expressing pent up energies.  And in that regard I would note the remarkable cultural similarities between the Japanese, who also subsisted nearly entirely on etiquette; and the Indians, whose caste system the English order closely resembled.  Everyone to their place, a place typically made obvious by the use of language.

These thoughts occasioned yesterday's post.  I was thinking it was all a very dismal game, one which satisfied the emotional needs--the social connection needs--of no one, and then I realized it was not a game at all: it was a ritual.

If we think of play as a reconciliation of our social system with our lower nervous system energies--as a way of expressing and releasing "fight or flight" energies, and countering the immobilization response--then its necessity for social harmony becomes obvious.

But there are layers of harmony.  At the lowest level is the totalitarian "order", in which a handful of savages inflict pain on the masses until they become prostrate and helpless.  Whether he articulates it as such or not, this is what Obama and his handlers want for the world.  This is because they have wild beasts within them--savage, angry, aggressive, unempathetic energy--and keep them from controlling them on an emotional level only by being controlled by them through the intellect.

Above this is the ritual order.  Throughout the book, one is struck by the closeness of violence of some sort, for perceived slights.  In this order, there are rules to follow, to prevent the outbreak of violence.  Unlike in a totalitarian order, though, some spontaneity is allowed, but only so much.  Thus: play without trust.  One can engage in witty banter, but only go so far.

A true order is one with cognitively and morally sovereign individuals--the creed of Individualism contains within it the only possible non-contradictory morality (societies do not exist, making an appeal to social morality inherently an X=0 proposition)--who interact in spontaneous and formally complex ways, forming a complex, and thus robust, order.

I would add that I think honest laughter is a good indicator of an authentic social order.  There was some honest laughter in Great Expectations, as for example between Pip and Joe, but not much.  Virtually everyone suffers from some sort of mental disorder brought on in large measure by social disconnection, and a sense of inner isolation.

Rock Lyrics: "English blood runs hot".  Stones

"Hanging on in quiet desperation is the English way." Floyd.

I will continue to develop this.  I have had some major personal breakthroughs I will be focusing on and not talking about.

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Ritual

I would like to define ritual as "play without trust". There is a huge amount of latent content in this which I will develop shortly. In the meantime, I have many miles to go before I sleep.

Saturday, May 9, 2015

Barack Obama and hell

I was at a very pleasant flea market in the hipster-ey side of town today.  The sun was shining, people were laughing and drinking beer, and buying odd little curios and various ethnic foods.

And the thought struck me: why does Barack Obama want to destroy all this?  Why does he want all the smiles and laughs gone, as they have been in Cuba for 50 years?  Why does he want all the boutique coffee shops, tattoo parlors, micro-breweries, corner restaurants, art galleries, nick-nack shops and everything else that is not needed to sustain life, but which makes it interesting, to disappear?

We need to be clear that our present level of spending is absolutely unsustainable, and everyone who has even a shred of sense knows it.

It is a miracle that the national credit rating has not already been downgraded again.  It seems likely a lot of arm twisting and maybe some cash or other quid pro quos have gone into keeping the illusion of solvency alive, but the day will come when our debt will be downgraded.  If the Fed were not buying 3/4ths of it, it would have happened already.  When that happens, all hell is going to break loose.  Unless something like my plan is implemented, we will face another national Depression.  That is my read on the situation, and I have a LOT of company.

And it seems obvious that this is the plan.  They crash the economy, and get control.  Then what?  They eliminate income inequality among those who are in the elite.  They provide a blanket and aspirin for every citizen, like Cuba, and call it universal healthcare.

Here is the thing: I had a pleasant day today, and if it is the case that someone made a billion dollars, I DON'T CARE.  It doesn't matter to me.  I worry about my life, and wish everyone else did the same.  Taking care of yourself is the opposite of selfishness.  It is generous.  You don't have to worry about me.

When this economic catastrophe hits--and it is a certainty if we elect anyone but an actual conservative to the White House next year--everything will be washed away that makes the people who put Obama in office happy.  Austin will not be weird, and neither will Portland.  We will see boarded up doors of places that once sponsored good times.  We will read weekly for years on end about new closings.

Does anyone even REMEMBER that we spent nearly a trillion dollars on Keynesian economics, and got nothing to show for it? The only reason our economy is not sputtering to a standstill now is the Fed is pumping $50 billion a month into the largest banks, who are using it to buy things they get to keep, but which also puts money into circulation.

I feel rage sometimes at the lack of thoughtfulness I see displayed all around me every day.  Yes, thinking is work, it is hard work, but people who do not want guns pointed at their heads need to do this fucking work in much larger numbers before it is too late.

Edit: Barack Obama does not relax.  He plays a lot of golf, and spends a lot of time not doing his job--which is good--but he does not relax.  No true ideologue relaxes.  The reason they live in their heads, the reason they are separated from the real world, from experience, is precisely that some emotional problem or problems push them away from that connection.  They do not see people: they see symbols.  They do not recognize suffering: merely symbols.  Fidel Castro does not relax.  Pol Pot did not relax.  Stalin did not relax.  Relatively, maybe.  They went to the ocean or the mountains.  But deeply: no.

Put another way, such people are unable to truly have fun.  They cannot play.  Their lives are characterized by one long emotional spasm.

So they do not VALUE the creature comforts and pleasures that an effective economic order makes possible.  Back in the days of open radicalism, they called them "bourgeois".  But what is supposed to replace them?  What pleasures and comforts do they enjoy in Cuba?  Wealthy elites the world over go there for the hookers.  Fidel Castro even bragged that even his hookers have college degrees.  Let that sink in for a moment.  Is it not a perfect metaphor?  You are being fucked so you can survive, and your leaders are extolling the fact that you underwent State sponsored indoctrination.

Do you remember how the Soviets created special stores for Party elites, so they could buy stuff less good than what we take for granted now?  How Communism always, necessarily, betrays the ideals of egalitarianism, fairness, justice in any sense, and common decency?

No person who can stomach Communism can possibly have a conscience and a brain.  No person working to destroy our economy belongs anywhere but hell.  Given the opportunity, I would gladly help facilitate the journey.

Friday, May 8, 2015

Blood Pressure

I am a 6'0", 275 pound person who drinks too much--did last night and the night before--and my blood pressure today was 110/82.  The doctors never believe it.  A few years ago when I weighed only 240 or so I had one doctor take my blood pressure three times in a visit, and it went down each time.

I am going to go on record as saying my belief is that the two best exercises for blood pressure are the standing barbell press, and the deadlift.  There is considerable evidence that weight training is good for blood pressure, but what I think makes these two particularly useful is that they require full body activation, and presumably push momentary blood pressure through the roof.  What I think happens is that the arteries expand and flex in response.  This is the whole problem with blood pressure: hardening of the arteries.  But if you ramp up the pressure periodically, I think, you force them to adapt.

I am not a doctor, and can't say this approach is safe for everyone, but I dropped my scores about 20 points on both measures in a month once I started weight training again.

The EmWave2 is likely good too.  I do it every morning, and can lower my pulse about 5 bpm, and get very relaxed in a very cardiovascular specific way.

Syntax

I think we can safely posit that no one enters the physiological state of adulthood in a state of full psychological awareness and maturity.  We all carry scars with us.  We are all limited, often in ways we can't see.  How many people do you know who are absolutely relaxed, confident, empathetic, joyful, and able to become utterly absorbed in the creative expression of energy without neglecting their chosen responsibilities? Looking at that list, I can't think of one person.  Most of the people we consider successful are in fact simply compulsive with respect to work and/or competitiveness.  Many outwardly decent people are still walking wounded, with anxieties and depressions, and cognitive distortions they simply deal with as best they can.

Given this postulate, let me offer two solutions:

1) Heal yourself by thinking about helping others.

2) Heal yourself by focusing on yourself, then teach others how to do the same.

Now, in a world which values compassion without wisdom--they are not the same thing, even in the Buddhist tradition, which gives both roughly equal weight in my reading--the first is the easiest path by far.  You avoid dealing with your own wounds, and if you focus your task on outward things--like, say, "income inequality"--you can even avoid dealing with the wounds of others.  You can live a purely abstract life, devoid entirely of honest self reflection, and still view yourself as a good person.

But if you live without wisdom--if you have not chosen to cultivate your own capacity for understanding and useful empathy--how can you know if you are not in fact hurting people rather than helping them?  If you need to help people you say: "let me carry that bag for you.  It looks heavy."  But that person was able to carry that bag, and now that you are carrying it they become weaker, and eventually are not able to.

You say "you don't have to be responsible for your actions.  I will make sure you are forgiven no matter what you do."  First, this may not be true.  But secondly, how are people supposed to develop self respect and the happiness that comes with it if they are not only not asked to be responsible, but explicitly told it is unnecessary for them?

How can anyone be confident that they are helping others build themselves, when they have not built their own personalities, developed their own wisdom?

Socialism is built on the lie that individual happiness can depend on anything other than individual self respect.

And I want to be clear that the do-gooder robots themselves cannot build self respect either, not honest, healthy self respect, because they are not in fact helping people, at least most of the time.

Here is something I wonder: if gay marriage is made mandatory in all States, but our nation enters into a decade long Depression because the leftists running the government want us to, to engineer a complete take-over, does this not hurt gay people too?  Will it not hurt blacks too?

Somewhere a sense of proportion was lost.  Somewhere the understanding that every push has a cascading effect, and every pull. Unintended consequences are the rule, not the exception, especially in social systems.

We live in a world where a new issue can be introduced every year, then taken off the shelf in favor of a new issue.  The chief Propagandists may already have the next push planned--with some iteration of degraded feminism the likeliest leading candidate.  Very smart people, at allegedly elite schools, NEVER stop to think these things through.  If gay marriage is the thing, then they are outraged.  But if nobody points out to them that you can't avoid disaster borrowing a trillion dollars a year forever, they don't come to that conclusion themselves.

They are no longer cognitive sovereign human beings.  They are Outer-Directed, as I think David Riesman put it.  Outer Directed means that only a few people who remain inner directed run the whole show.  There is no creative exchange of diverse ideas.  There is no thinking at a base level of principle.  There is no soul-level discussion about the nature of life, human purpose, and how best to alleviate the problems of humanity, at least not in any way which could lead to implementable policies.  

Liberalism is built on Inner Direction.  This is the place where the conscience still exists.  This is the place where the ability to be response-able is still valued.

Socialism is built on Other Direction, on conformity.  It does not recognize the inner conscience.  The only moral manifestations that matter are purely material.

I could have said all this better, and one day will, but I am tired.

The Left

I have by and large stopped "debating" Leftists.  Purely as a practical matter, my viewpoints and the reasoning underlying them are actively suppressed at all the main sites.  But I still will find myself waiting on someone or something from time to time, and let me fingers (finger, I'm bad at it) walk on my phone.  Such was the case today.

And I am struck by the overall level of childishness which characterizes so many of those who have taken it upon themselves to repeat the days propaganda, and to attempt to silence through attack all who disagree with it.

And surveying this landscape, what I realize is it is characterized by a very visceral terror that conservatives are right, and that a principle purpose in life is accepting and developing the ability to be accountable to oneself and others.  This thought terrifies them. It requires psychological maturation.  It requires dealing with emotional problems they don't want to deal with.

In Lenin's time it was possible to believe that a new and better society could be built through terror and science.  It was never a humanism.  It was never Liberal in any respect whatever, but the experiment had not been tried on as grand a scale as he attempted.  They had far, far more time than the French ever had.

What happened, of course, was that Lenin was far worse than Czar Nicholas II in every possible way.  Mao was far, far worse than Chiang Kai Shek.  Ho Chi Minh was far, far worse than the French or Japanese.  Castro was far, far worse than Battista.  Etc.  It is a dull drill, and a series of facts lost only on who?  The terrified.

For the sufficiently emotionally disconnected, it is possible to nurture a belief that OUT THERE somewhere is the answer to all their problems, and that it is possible in the meantime to join a cult which will tell them what to do, what to say, what to think, and which promises to never, ever ask them to be responsible adults.  This reassures them.

These people are out there in droves.  They swarm on the internet like gnats.  They reinforce one another.  They reassure one another.

And for the power elite, they have their uses.

Note to the Military

I'm looking this thing in my mind's eye, and I see an order coming down from Obama to put in place and test a plan to keep Texas in the Union; just as I see a plan coming down to manage unrest in the United States in the event of a catastrophic event, like a nuclear detonation or disease outbreak.  Maybe the generals grumble, but they are where they are because they carry out orders, and there is nothing illegal in these orders.

And on it goes.  Our best and brightest, those who have risen to the highest levels of their profession, continue to hand Obama plans to carry out anti-Constitutional acts.  They put their imprimatur's on them.  They sign them.

As an ideal, all soldiers are citizen-soldiers.  They are citizens, first, and soldiers because of the value they place on our system of government.

The only thing I want to say here is that the two can separate.  What is right as a citizen--as someone with a family, with children, with grandchildren, with a church, with a community, with a love of nation--can conflict with following even legal orders.

I have said before and will say again that the military needs to have contingency plans just like Jade Helm for a reinstitution of Constitutional government, if some part of those who have been granted power choose to foster and attempt to implement policies which are manifestly illegal, immoral, and which have as their goal the consolidation of power by eliminating the power of the people--which is and always has been the primary goal of the power elites that use socialist rhetoric to further their personal ends.

Jade Helm

I have been kind of watching this, trying to figure out what it is about.  Here is my conclusion: it is mission preparation for invading Texas in the event it secedes.  They have talked about it repeatedly, and they are not the only ones.

This particular exercise is not intended to impose martial law at this point, but, much more subtly, to season everyone--civilian, federal agent, and soldier alike--to get used to the idea of using U.S. military on U.S. soil against U.S. citizens, in direct violation of over 100 years of U.S. history and the letter and spirit of the Posse Comitatus Law, which was created in the after-math of the Civil War.

There is nothing new about the U.S. government invading unruly States. 650,000 or so dead and countless ruined lives are testament to that.  What is new in the modern era is trying to condition soldiers and Federal agents to effectively reject the notion that they joined up to protect justice and freedom--the American Way--and instead learn to trust those who whisper in their ears about sedition and treason, and "anti-Americanism".  They have been hearing since Obama took office about spies and saboteurs and traitors, radicals, wild-eyed loonies, and conspiracy nuts.  Some may even be stupid enough to believe that opponents of Obama are racists.

Anything you do repeatedly you condition yourself to.  I read the plan is to make this thing an annual event: http://www.globalresearch.ca/jade-helm-15-police-state-usa-the-end-of-posse-comitatus/5445821

Can you think of a better way to stay in practice to pull Texas back into the grasp of the Federal Government than to invade it annually?  And they state openly the focus is Texas:
Texas is the main bulk of the activity. We are spread from east to west, north to south, throughout the state of Texas. 
If I were Texas, I would tell them to go fuck themselves.  I would get some good lawyers on it, and do everything within my power, within the limits of the law, to make the going as hard as possible.  They may like that, but that is about all that can be done without firing a shot.  And that day may come.

And the American military has never had mass defections, but I wonder how corrupt it has become?  Will soldiers follow orders simply because they are given by a superior officer?  The President is the Commander in Chief, because he has the PRIMARY responsibility for defending the Constitution, and needs access to force at times to do it.  But to the extent he violates the Constitution, no order he gives is lawful, and no unlawful order can be followed by any professional soldier.  Only legal orders are to be followed.

But what if he stays within the letter of the law, while being patently abusive?  Well, we will likely not be free forever.  We will only stay free if the people who need to do hard thinking have the commitment and integrity to actually do it.

And I would ask openly: what overseas mission set could this POSSIBLY be for?  The practice exercises use the FBI, DEA, DHS (who he does not name explicitly, and who can be assumed to be the lead Federal agency involved), who do not exist overseas.

How could this be a plan to invade Iran?  We have no chance at blending into the civilian population in large numbers over there. Ukraine?  Are we planning a war with Russia?

The whole fucking thing does not add up, and the SpecOp folks involved in this need to do some serious soul searching and ask whose fucking side they are on.  I'm not sure what the opposite of De Oppresso Liber is, but it seems it is becoming the de facto motto.

That is my two cents.

Releasing

In addition to my Kum Nye practice, which conjures feelings, I will sometimes lay in bed and try to contact parts of me which are dormant.  As I mentioned, it came to me yesterday to address specific parts of me frozen in moments in the distant past.

Many moments in life have strong feeling tones, which we have long forgotten, but which reside somewhere in our memory.  The first time you went to the circus, perhaps; or the first time (and only time, for many) you saw Bambi (does it perhaps say something about our culture that this movie and Old Yeller have largely disappeared, or seem to me to have?).  The feeling is very specific, and even if it is similar to other such emotions, calling it say "excitement", or "sadness" is akin to treating all shades of red and blue the same.  This is imprecise, and unhealthy.

Last night I was dreaming I was playing soldier as a child, with imaginary guns.  We used to do that, both with our hands as guns, and later toy guns, and pine cones as grenades.  There was considerable negotiation and argument as to who shot who first.

As I interacted with that boy this morning, there was an underlying sadness, which I entered into as deeply and as specifically as I could.  I entered into "that".  He played at being a soldier because he was afraid.  Guns empower you; violence empowers you.  At least you are shooting back, versus cowering and waiting to die.

And although all this likely sounds hokey and absurd to people unused to this sort of work, I am "talking" with all these newly discovered parts of me and encouraging them to share their experiences with me, everything, without hesitation.

One of the reasons I infer I was traumatized as a baby is that I will often wake up verbalizing like a baby, just saying nonsense syllables over and over.  My operating hypothesis is that I must have been babbling in the night and my mother, who was presumably very tired of waking up to care for me, came in and screamed at me to shut up.  The process was interrupted, and I started shaking.

That part is incomplete, unfed. And I think many people have things like this in them: they just don't take the time and make the effort to do this very difficult work. So this morning I imagined holding that baby in my arms, and telling it is was safe, until it started cooing like a happy baby, and some sounds came out again, which I allowed, while pendulating my head back and forth, which I have read helps in neurological processing.  There are many emotional upsets in me, but this is where the shaking comes from.  I am sure of that.  We will see what happens.

And I will finish this post by referencing the notion of rooms.  It has since been eclipsed by many horror films, but back in the day The Shining was quite scary.  One of the oppressive things, to me, about the hotel was the many rooms, and you never knew what lay behind each door, what history, what horrors.

I would submit that in large measure our psyches are like hotels, with many rooms, and behind many doors there is a static scene that is lost to conscious awareness.  We both have to learn to interact with these scenes with our conscious awareness, and animate them, bring them to life; and to get all the scenes to interact with one another.  They are all parts of us.  This is how flow throughout the whole self is facilitated.

I suspect Jack Nicholson has many unopened doors.


Thursday, May 7, 2015

Non-attachment

I had a rough morning this morning.  Tons of feelings were flooding me.  I was feeling depressed and dispirited.  Somewhere in there I felt a radio communication come through (not literally, folks: I don't need to be medicated, and am not sure I would want to even if I did) from my younger self, on behalf of all my younger selves, and felt happy.

I have been traumatized many times.  I was traumatized as a baby, as a toddler, as a youngster, as a pre-adolescent and as a teenager.  There are specific events and emotional states I associate with all of them.  I went through an consciously contacted all these "selves", which had lived in relative isolation from my conscious awareness, and from each other, until I opened up communication.  I told them to communicate any feelings they have, any time.

And damned if I did not get a few weird moments of feeling things I felt when I was, say, ten, and had completely suppressed.  It is an odd sense, meeting old feelings anew.

This is a very Kum Nye approach: opening feelings, expanding them, and welcoming them with interest, kindness, and curiosity, no matter their content.

And this afternoon I was feeling good, and got to thinking: there is a parallelism between rejecting bad emotions and clinging to good ones.  There is a morphological quality of holding which itself prevents the self organization of the system on a deeper level, and following qualitative adaptation.

If you neither seek to force the emotion of happiness, nor to avoid the emotions, say, of fear and loneliness and sadness and grief, something deeper takes hold.  This is in my mind unquestionably at least one of the things Buddhists aim at with the creed of non-attachment.

What I think many fail to grasp is that at root the sense of the spiritual is exactly that: a sense.  A feeling, a refined emotion, one which we cannot get if we react to the superficial, outward emotions.  You must be calm.

All of this is me articulating in slightly different words what I am being taught in my Kum Nye lessons.  I really think anyone who is not feeling bliss 24/7 would benefit from taking up this very nourishing practice.  I have preached this often--and convinced one person to do it briefly--but have otherwise failed completely as far as I can tell.  But self evidently, I am not driven by a need to manifest success, nor a compulsion to avoid failure. I am driven to learn and explore.  This is merely where I communicate what I think I've learned.

Global Warming Simplified

There are large problems with land temperature measurement.  You have the heat island effects, and the logistical problems of locating thermometers around the North and South Poles.  In my understanding, NOAA simply GUESSES those temperatures, based on their models, and they then use those models as data.

But we have two very simple and very reliable places we can look to see if global warming is really happening: the polar ice caps, whose maximum and minimum ice extents can readily be measured; and more importantly, the temperatures in the stratosphere, which we can get very reliably from satellites, and which suffer none of the complicating effects of land temperature measurement.  The atmosphere is reasonably well mixed at that height, in my understanding, and the amount of air movement is much less.

Some basic physics may be in order.  The postulate of the Warmist Cult is that human-produced CO2 emissions will rise into the upper atmosphere--the stratosphere--and remain there for a very long time. CO2 is present at ground level, but has very little effect relative to water vapor.  CO2 only absorbs about ten percent of the infrared, radiant spectrum, whereas water absorbs most of it.

Let me repeat that: CO2 only absorbs AT MOST 10% of the radiant energy being released by the Earth.

At the frequencies where it operates, it is fully saturated.  No energy leaving Earth in, say, the 13-15 micron bandwidth, makes it to space.  This has been the case for some time. Everyone who is familiar with the science knows this.

The Global Warming Conjecture is based on the notion that as stratospheric CO2 concentrations increase, the altitude at which the energy is fully absorbed will continue to decrease.  Higher temperatures will slowly creep down.  On the face of it, this is not a farcical proposition.

Here is the issue, though: the air in the stratosphere is very, very thin.  No conventional airplane could operate up there.  This means that to have an effect on the lower atmosphere, a LOT of warming has to be happening--in my understanding, roughly 3x the warming we can actually observe with highly reliable satellite data.  One could in fact make the case that to the extent CO2 induced forcing is happening, it can be seen real-time in stratospheric temperature data.

Since this warming is a necessary postulate of the models, and since it cannot be observed, the models are clearly ipso facto falsified, and the high priests must KNOW THIS.

Here is what I think is actually happening: they have all the usual fears, of overpopulation, species extinctions, running out of food, ruining the environment in a broad sense, and they want a global government to, as they see it, implement "sensible" policies.  Humans have too much freedom.

And they have the long term propaganda success of Global Warming to use.  It is a highly complex situation, within which every weather event can be used as evidence for the ignorant, and thus very suitable to the purpose.  They rationalize their lies by saying it is for the higher good, that humans are too stupid to be allowed to continue as they have.

It is an elitist mind-set, and a very old one.  The notion of being saved by one's betters has been used to justify a large segment of the world's tyrannies throughout human history.  That the entire project is founded on a lie shows the lack of moral compass or vision on the part of those perpetrating it.


Wednesday, May 6, 2015

The 1% Doctrine inverted

I think one of my principal talents--a singular and unintentional gift from my childhood--is seeing what is in front of me. This is quite uncommon.  Most people unconsciously substitute what they think OUGHT to be there for what in fact is there.  As I've likely mentioned, one of my favorite line from any movie is the line when George Banks sings his "it's grand to be me" song, then reaches to touch his childrens heads, and asks "Dear, where are the children?"  "They're not here, dear." "But of course they are.  Where else would they be?"

As some will recall, the 1% Doctrine was the decision making heuristic that if there was any doubt--a 1% doubt, to be exact--there was no doubt.  If someone MIGHT get nukes, they had to be treated as if it were a certainty.  This in no small measure is why we invaded Iraq.  He was clearly going to get them at some point.

But can we wonder, given all this fear about nuclear attack, why we spent $2 trillion or more on wars in Afghanistan and Iraq and elsewhere, but have not spent $2 billion to harden our energy grid?

Be that as it may, can we not posit that if there is a 1% chance the Bush Administration in some form was involved in 9/11, that we must launch an investigation?

Two things stand out to me as obvious: 1) explosives were used, beyond any doubt.  Literal and unmistakable fragments are everywhere.  2) this fact was covered up by the investigation: intentionally or not can be debated.  I prefer what I call the cowardice hypothesis, but it may not be the best one.

Architects and Engineers for 9/11 Truth is doing really good work.  Their three main board members are all AIA registered architects, two of them with a good amount of experience in high rises. They have rented a large and I think prominent booth at the upcoming national AIA convention, where an initiative to take an official stand on 9/11 will be voted on.  They will presumably fail this go-round, but I think simply seeing fellow architects in suits, who are plainly not crazy, and who are committed to the cause, is going to have an effect over time, since the facts are plainly on their side.  This is in my view undisputable.  Anyone who argues otherwise is arguing from what they ASSUME the facts are.  Assumptions make everyone  dumb, sooner or later.

I give them $25/month.  It's not much, but this battle will go on over the long haul. I would encourage you to support them as well.