Archive for July, 2010

RELIGIOUS HATRED IN AMERICA IS NOW AN HONORED AMERICAN VALUE

Saturday, July 31st, 2010

Religious bigotry in America, is simply religious bigotry and it is rampant. Religion is based on faith alone, and therefore every religious faith believes they are right and every other religious faith is wrong; this means that every religion is inherently intolerant of members of every other religious faith. America is a nation of intolerant religious bigots; Americans hatred for other than their own religious belief has become an American positive value of hatred for heretics and everyone who disagrees with each and every religious American is a heretic to be hated.

Since America is primarily Christian, the hatred of American Christians for members of other religious faiths are the most glaringly depraved in the USA. All Gods demand reverence for themselves and no others; therefore hatred for heretics has become a positive for religious Americans. The number one hatred in America today, is hatred for Muslims because of 9/11; previous to 9/11, it was Jews.

There were 19 Saudi Muslims involved in the 9/11 attack and they were motivated by America defiling their Holy Land by building an American military base in Saudi Arabia; there are 1.6 billion Muslims in the world, including 5 million American Muslims, but there were only 19 Muslims involved in 9/11 and 300,000 Christians involved in building the military base in Muslim Holy Land, Saudi Arabia.

The end result is America fighting two religious wars against the Muslim nations of Afghanistan and Iraq who had nothing to do with 9/11, perpetrated by 19 Saudi terrorists and the Saudi bin Laden. To me, this is ludicrous; it makes no sense at all.

American religious fanatics are incapable of loving their enemies and Constitutional religious freedom in America has become totally ineffectual; religious bigotry and hatred has now become a positive trait and value in America. It is not a pretty sight to behold..

God bless America. Amen.

SOCIAL NETWORKING; WHO DO YOU TRUST, THE USA OR ENRON

Thursday, July 29th, 2010

Lately, there has been privacy concerns expressed over some privatized social networking sites.

America has had My Space, Face Book, and rivals trying to make a mint out of the slack in social networking. Mind you, I am not a socialist at heart, I believe an individual should be able to benefit from his own creativeness, inventiveness, and ingenuity; however, I trust my government more than any privatized capitalistic venture that pretends trust. In difference to My Space, Google, Enron, or Face Book, I would welcome a U.S. Government social network that would officially guarantee security of the privacy of the individual. Frankly over the years, I have trusted most my Post Office, my Social Security, and as bad as it is, my Internal Revenue Department. I trust my America with my mail, my Social Security check, and my income tax; I do not trust Enron.

I disagree with Right Wing-Nuts that the American democratic Republic is incompetent, totally corrupt, and ineffective. If the U.S. Government provided a social network, I would subscribe because I trusted them more than privatized ones: socialism be damned.

AT&T was supposed to be trustworthy with my phone and internet, but when the Bush
Administration spied on Americans without a warrant, AT&T cooperated with them to listen to my phone calls and read my email; consequently, I do not trust AT&T or the Bush Administration but in choosing between the two, I would choose to trust any American government under a different President than Bush more than any other private corporations.

God bless America; I am a patriotic American even if that sounds funky and naïve to Republicans and Fox News.  Hey, write your Congressman to establish an internet social network under the United States Postal Service allowing them to advertise to pay for it; that’s a winner.

AMERICA’S ARIZONA DILEMMA

Sunday, July 25th, 2010

Damn, in the final analysis, it would appear that the Mexicans got the best of the Gadsden Purchase deal; is there any way that America could possibly rescind the deal, return the land area (and population) to Mexico, and get our money back?

STRIVING FOR 100% EMPLOYMENT IN AMERICA IS THE ONLY SOLUTION TO THE AMERICAN DEPRESSION OF 2008

Tuesday, July 20th, 2010

America’s most responsible economists agree that America right now needs to put the unemployed to work, if America is going to survive the current depression: Daily Beast, “Get America Back to Work” at http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2010-07-19/save-the-economy-a-manifesto-by-harry-evans-joseph-stiglitz-alan-blinder-and-other-leaders/?om_rid=DI$Y55&om_mid=_BMRERdB8O5mxrD&

You, the American people, are insane, you have been mesmerized by a touted free market economy; there is no such thing as free market economy, supply and demand, fair trade, or “trickle down” bonanzas! All economy is incestuous; all employees are consumers, stupid.

The differential between poor and wealthy has increased in the Bush Administration Reaganomics deregulation and poverty increased very year that President Bush was in office which means consumers have diminished; the results are that there too few consumers compared to entrepreneurs. All people look at the stock market as an economic barometer; no one looks at citizens below poverty level. People living in poverty are poor consumers only; they need to be made wealthy, productive laborer consumers with dignity and respect, better living conditions, and a better economy.

If no one seems to believe that 100% employment is the ideal, the American democratic Republic will continue to falter and fall into the economic abyss.

The only proper capitalism for a democracy like America is the right of an individual to profit from his own inventiveness, ingenuity, and sweat. Predatory capitalism, like we have in the USA where every corporation’s dream is to gobble up their competitor, is simply the legalized monopoly, corruption, and plutocracy that we have today.

Call it whatever you like, but a goal of 100% employment is the only way to avoid economic depression and America is in an economic depression right now. Those responsible for the mass unemployment we have today, is corporate America; they are the employers and they are the only people who benefit from mass unemployment, for corporate America it is called ‘cheap labor and big profits’. The President of the United States is not responsible for unemployment in the private sector, stupid; corporate America is.

If America is to break out of this depression, it will be because the government has developed a Federal plan for achieving 100% employment and instituted a 1930s type program like the WPA which will put the unemployed to work on infrastructure, like public transpiration that America needs so desperately, and that will (interestingly enough) compete with the private sector and make the private sector compete by putting unemployed labor to work and creating (guess what) CONSUMERS! Building electric railroads also requires steel, copper, electricity and locomotives; which means even more employment and creation of much needed consumers.

Now, why didn’t all of you people elect me to be the President of the United States?

SO YOU WANT TO BE A TEACHER?

Monday, July 19th, 2010

If all the teachers in the world were excellent teachers would the world be void of ignorance; would there be no wars; would the standard of living of the world’s population be more equitable; would the crime rate be at an all time low? Does excellence in teaching have anything to do with anything? If you have decided to be a teacher, these are questions you should ask yourself. The next question you should consider is, “What is an excellent teacher?”

Unfortunately, you will eventually find that there is a great difference of opinion about what excellence in teaching is, among teachers, students, parents and, God help them, university professors. Not to discourage prospective teachers, however, it is safe to say that some of the greatest teachers of all time have been fired, or worse, for incompetence! Remember that Jesus Christ was crucified for his teaching and Socrates was forced to drink the Hemlock for misleading youth with his. Consider the risk!

Critics of teachers, who have been fired, should use considerable caution before subjecting those teachers to scorn! Truly, it is unfortunate that the world cannot possibly mold young, aspiring individuals into ‘excellent’ teachers by magic formula; it has been said, in some quarters, that excellent teachers ‘are born and not made’.

Today in America, and probably most of the world, there is great concern for what is wrong with education. In America especially, where the law (The Northwest Ordinance of 1787, providing for public education) predates even our founding and the U.S. Constitution, there has been a great debate among political leaders (extending even to the President of the United States) about resolving the ‘problems’ of American public education. Yet it would appear that there is no consensus of exactly what ‘excellence in education’ is. Though not everyone would agree, the public should be fully aware of the fact that politicians are not ‘politicians to resolve the problems of public education’ but rather politicians are devoted to winning votes to assure their own survival. The subject of public education is a popular subject and reaches to the heart of everyone; hence every politician is making an attempt to become a hero in American education.

First concerns of those who aspire to become professional teachers should not be consideration of how their decision will affect their own lives; rather aspiring teachers should be more concerned about how their decision to become a teacher will affect the lives of the thousands of students who they will touch in their career and be at risk as a result of their teaching.

Perhaps it is presumptuous to say it but there is a possibility that the current and past problems of public education could be resolved if all teachers entered the profession for the ‘right’ reason. Certainly, there are wrong reasons for people becoming school teachers. For example, some prospective teachers see a teacher as a person with considerable authority and they choose to become a teacher because of their desire to feel superior to students because of that authority. For educators who believe that teaching is a noble profession, those teachers who command a feeling of superiority over their students simply because ‘they are the teacher’, are at the heart of the problems in public education today.

No one wants to be required to conform to a superior authority simply because it has been declared an authority that requires respect. When students rebel against that kind of authority, hate to go to school because of it, and do not want to go to school because of it, then the schools are failing and those teachers who represent authority figures are the reason for the school’s failure.

There are huge differences between academicians and teachers. They are not the same thing and unfortunately the universities have not yet discovered that fact. Teaching is an art and a science; knowledge is not injected into students, nor crammed into their cerebral matter! Nor, is knowledge forced onto students by a designated authority! Nor is knowledge transmitted into the brain cells of students by lecture from an accomplished scholar.

Actually, teaching is providing a definite incentive to students to seek knowledge for the ‘pleasure of finding something out’ (as expressed by Nobel Prize winning physicist Richard Feynman). Teachers must spark the natural curiosity of students by setting an example and motivating students to acquire a command of a subject that can be used by them to improve their quality of life, whether that subject is mathematics, history, baseball, whistling, music, or art. Students could care less, why the teacher is teaching the subject. Their only concern, and justly so, is purely selfish; why should they be required to learn and master the subject unless it will benefit them. Life and time is too precious, to waste in idle learning!

So, you want to be a teacher? To prepare yourself for this noble profession, consider what your motive is for becoming a teacher? Think about what your real responsibility is as a professional teacher and is that a responsibility that you are willing to accept as a sacred trust? Day labor is exhausting, stressful, back-breaking, and tiring work. Teaching is no less exhausting, stressful, back-breaking, and tiring. For the sake of our youth and the future of civilization, don’t even contemplate teaching unless you are willing to assume full responsibility for your decision.

HOLY COLONOSCOPY; THAT TICKLES THE TONSILS!

Saturday, July 17th, 2010

The life of a man, is filled with victories, defeats, heroics, and humiliation; that is just the way life is, if you are fortunate enough to live to ripe old age. When a man lives beyond the average life expectancy of an American male, everyone it seems and especially some physicians tend to perceive you as cheating because you outlived expectancy; at least, that has been my own experience.

My own physician, bless her, is an exceptional physician and treats me like any other patient of any age; that is why I chose her to be my primary care physician and besides that she looks very much like my own beautiful granddaughter and I appreciate good looking women doctors. After all, no one should feel compelled to have an ugly old male physician; that is my philosophy.

Last time I visited my beautiful doctor, she told me, “Since your family has a history of colon cancer, and you have not had a colonoscopy since 1997, I think you should have a colonoscopy.”

“OK,” I agreed, “If that is what you think is best.”

Since I really trust my physician explicitly, and she has blue eyes and blond hair, I would endure another of those hideous medical examinations we suffer for the sincere pleasure of knowing that we are healthy. My last experience with a colonoscopy was relatively easy, 14 years ago.

Preparation for the actual colonoscopy is nine tenths of the horror. For those unaware of the nature of a colonoscopy procedure, a short description would be that a physician who has the misfortune of specializing in this procedure, uses a long flexible scope with a camera on the end and enters the rectum and physician looks insider your entire colon for polyps that might be cancerous and if she/he finds one, it is removed with the same medical device. In order to do this, the physician must have an excellent line of vision, which means that anything possibly impairing that vision must be removed from the colon; preparing the colon for the procedure is the responsibility of the patient.

The first thing the patient must do to facilitate the cleansing of obstruction of vision in the colon is go to the pharmacy and get a prescription filled; this prescription will actually rid the colon of anything and everything that might obscure the doctor’s vision. The prescription that you receive comes complete with a one gallon jug that resembles the town’s water tower and instructions.

Dutifully, I went to my pharmacy, handed my prescription to the nice female clerk, and she left the counter and came back with a gallon jug, larger than my head, with powder in it and only the pharmacist’s directions pasted on the side.

“Here,” she said, “The directions are pasted on the side.”

She looked at me as if to say please hurry and leave so that I am not further embarrassed by your jug. The woman did not say, “Thank you”!

Thinking of what kind of appearance I would make walking out of the pharmacy and down the street to the car, knowing that everyone that saw me would be thinking, “Oh boy! That poor sucker has got his jug and is going to have a colonoscopy; I pity his sorry ass. ”

I asked the clerk if I might have a bag for the jug.

“It is not heavy, it’s empty,” the clerk said staring at me.

I stared back; I did not have to actually speak to the clerk because my stare outdid her stare. She went away and came back with a shopping bag. I now believed that I had some semblance of my dignity restored, because the jug was concealed in the shopping bag.

Here are he directions that I received for assuring that my physician’s visibility would be unimpeded inside my colon: The Day Before Procedure. The day before the procedure you will eat no food but may drink clear liquids like broth, bouillon, Jell-O, black coffee or tea, soft drinks, or apple juice. No red juice or red Jell-O. Drink a lot of water and no alcohol.

This would appear to be the ideal time to start my weight loss diet.

The Day Before Procedure, continues: Fill your gallon jug with tap water and the powder provided. Do not add sugar. The solution will taste better if you drink it cold.

Right away, I caught on; if this solution tastes better cold, I should not even think about drinking it warm; I am not dumb.

Between 5 and 6PM the evening before the procedure, drink 3 quarts of the solution within 3 hours. Drink a glass every 10 minutes. Bowel movements will begin about an hour after you start drinking the solution.

They were right; however there was no indication of when the bowel movements would cease. They didn’t.  The direction mentioned other thing that you can expect to happen to your body at length but there is no point in belaboring that issue here.

Proceeding to directions for The Day of the Procedure:  At 6AM on the day of the procedure, drink the remaining 1 quart of the solution.  Then,  drink nothing for 3 hours before the procedure. My appointment was for 3PM.

By this time, I was convinced that my physician would have an excellent line of vision; even the air that I breathed, swept entirely through my body and out the other end, with nothing to impede its flow.

The directions further state that I must have a driver; i would not be able to drive afterward.  They would not give me the procedure if I did not have a driver.

The directions ended with these words, “Thank you for choosing Kaiser Permanente.” Thank you? For what?

Since I live alone, it was agreed that my grandson Michael would take me to the hospital for the procedure; his mother, Erin, would come from work and pick me up and take me home.

Michael drove me to the hospital and waited with me until his mother arrived later; this is where the experience began to get somewhat bizarre. I checked in and I told Michael funny stories about my prior hospital experiences while we waited and then a nurse called my name, “Richard”, using my first name only. I rose and followed her into the inner sanctum, an Operating Room, especially designed for colonoscopy procedures. The nurse weighed me and I was glad to know that I had lost weight the last two days; she then ordered me to remove my clothes from the waist down and put on a gown backwards, for obvious reasons.

Then I was ordered to lay on a gurney on my back, had a monitoring device attached to my middle finger of my left hand, had an IV inserted in my left hand, and was ordered to sign a waver that agreed to the procedure and agree that the doctor was not to blame for anything that might happen; I signed the waver.

The nurse had a wrist band to fasten to my right wrist and asked me, “Just so we know your are the right patient, tell me the last four digits of your Social Security number and your last name.”

“My name is Blankenburg,” I told her and then gave her the last four digits of my Social Security Number.

“Your name is Blankenburg,” she yelled, “and not Patterson?”

“Holy Crap, Lady,” I yelled back, “I’m the wrong damn patient!”

“Just a minute,” the nurse said calming me, “let me go check on something.”

Meanwhile, I found out later that after I was called into the inner sanctum, another nurse went into the waiting room where Michael was and called out for, “Richard Blankenburg,” and some old geezer followed the nurse into the OR.

When Erin arrived, Michael told his mother what had happened.

“Mom, I went up to the desk and told them that they just called out my grandpa’s name and someone else went in with the nurse and it wasn’t my grandpa. I hope everything’s alright Mom, I did the best that I could.”

You have to love Michael; he is so good!

Back in the OR, the nurse came in with a wrist band that had my name and number on it and she assured me that I was the one who was going to get the scope whether I liked it or not.

The nurse then asked me some questions about cancer in my family and while she was reading my records, she suddenly exclaimed excitedly, “You’re 80 years old!”

I assured her that I already knew that.

“We don’t give colonoscopies to people 80 years old,” she said.

We then agreed that I was indeed 80 years old and that I was indeed going to have a colonoscopy because I had already suffered through the preparation.

The physician then entered the room; I had never met her before. The nurse went over my records with her and the doctor came over to talk to me, getting her face right into mine with our noses just a few inches apart; I was lying on my back and she was looking down. She was quire good looking and young, definitely my type of doctor.

“Richard,” she said loudly, obviously assuming that I was so old I must be half deaf, “We are going to do a colonoscopy on you. The good news is this will be your last colonoscopy!”

The last sentence was somewhat unnerving and she must have sensed it.

Thinking I might misinterpret her statement, she quickly added, “You’re 80 years old and we do not give colonoscopies to people over 80 years old.”

I assured her that I knew how old I was and thank God, I won’t have to subject myself to this indignity again, ever, even if I live to be 120 years old, and I just might do that out of spite.

Then the Nurse told me to lie on my left side; when I did, I could feel a breeze when she lifted my gown that I was wearing backwards.

“Hey!” I’m still awake!” I told everyone in the room excitedly.

“Yes, I know, I haven’t given you the anesthesia yet,” the nurse said.

“Now I am giving you the anesthesia,” the nurse told me, “You will go to sleep now.”

I shut my eyes expecting to go to sleep but when I opened them I could see the opposite wall. I could hear the doctor talking, everything they said, and twice I felt hard pain and cried out; I really want to tell the doctor, “Watch where the hell you’re driving and take it easy on those curves.”

However, when you are in those particular circumstances that I was in at the time and you are at the mercy of a woman driver, I have learned it is best to just keep your damn mouth shut.”

“Here’s one,” I heard the doctor say a couple of times. I assumed they found polyps and removed them. In 1997, when I had the procedure, they found nothing at all. I was a little disappointed this time around.

When the doctor finished, the nurse leaned over and said, “Can you hear me, Richard?”

“God, yes,” I told her, “I haven’t been asleep.”

“No, you were asleep,” she replied, “You just thought you were awake.”

Why argue, I thought, it was a moot question now.

“We are going to take you across the hall to the Recovery Room,” the nurse said, with her face right in mine.

That was new for me. In 1997, when I had had the procedure, when they finished the nurse told me to get up and get dressed and go out to the waiting room and wait for the doctor.

Anyway, at this point a big male nurse pushed my gurney over to the Recovery Room.

“You are going to the Recovery Room,” he told me along the way, “As soon as you can pass gas you will be able to go home.”

“Actually, I can go home, now,” I said, “I have already passed that test.”

He thought that was funny; I was serious.

In the Recovery Room, another nurse asked me if I wanted some juice. I had been 2 days without food and over 3 hours without a drink, and she is asking me if I wanted juice; obviously a dumb question. She offered cranberry or apple juice.

“I don’t particularly care for either one,” I said, “but right now I will drink anything.”

“How about orange juice?” she asked.

“My favorite,” I answered, “preferably with a little vodka.”

“No alcohol, today,” she ordered, “if you mix alcohol with that anesthesia you received you will go right to sleep.”

“Damn,” I thought, “you should have poured me a drink before the procedure.”

I drank the orange juice and the nurse told me I had a few small polyps and I would hear the results of the tests in 5 to 10 days.

My daughter then came to the Recovery Room and they told me I could get dressed and go home. I started to get up and the nurse yelled, no, sit down and get dressed. You might fall if you stand; you’re still experiencing the effects of the anesthesia. What anesthesia, I was thinking.

“Are you dizzy,” the nurse asked when I stood up.

“Not any more than usual,” I replied

“Hold on to your daughter,” the nurse said, “so you don’t fall.”

They still insisted that I had an anesthesia. I felt more awake afterwards than I did before; but who cares, I was finally going to get something to eat.

Erin related Michael’s story about the nurse taking the wrong Grandpa to surgery; we both laughed.

When I saw Michael, I told him that they had two Richards and they mixed us up and thought I was the wrong one.

“Yeh, I know Grandpa, I did what I could,” he apologized.

“I know you tried, Michael, but you know, I never did get the colonoscopy, they circumcised me instead.”

Michael thought that was funny.

We went out for dinner and I had a three course dinner with Crème Brulee; life is wonderful.

POLLS INDICATE THAT AMERICANS LACK FAITH: CAN THE END POSSIBLY BE NEAR?

Wednesday, July 14th, 2010

“Nearly 60 percent of American voters say they lack faith in President Obama . . .” according to a Washington Post/ABC News poll (Majority of Americans lack faith in Obama).

Link: http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20100713/us_nm/us_obama_poll/print

There is an old axiom that figures do no not lie but some liars figure.  A survey is a sampling of answers to questions and the results are dependent upon the questions asked; some questions like, “When did you quit beating your wife,” hardly get a valid answer.  So the poll depends on the question.

If asked, do you trust Obama, it raises another question, do I trust Obama compared to who?  The same survey found, ” 72 percent said the same of Republicans”.  So even more respondents didn’t trust Republicans than didn’t trust Obama; so what do you conclude from that?  With all the hatred being expressed in the media, Americans apparently don’t trust anyone anymore.  Personally, I think the question do you trust someone is not a legitimate question since the demeaning in America today indicates that no one can be trusted; that seems to be proven in this poll.

A poll is a sampling; an election is an actual count.  Sampling used to predict elections, were pretty accurate until 2000 and 2004 when they proved entirely wrong in both of those elections; but it might also imply that those elections were fixed and both elections were questionable.

I have long questioned polls.  Polls are usually run by special interests and usually come out the way the person paying for them want them to come out.  In more recent years, I have been most impressed by polls showing more Americans believe in lies than believe in the truth; for example 62% of the population believed that Saddam Hussein was responsible for the 911 Terrorists attack on the USA which all reputable sources say is a lie. It seems 62% of Amricans are either stupid or misinformed; that is scary to me.

What are you to believe; are you to believe that Americans are ignorant or that polls are not accurate.  If you believe the polls today, you would have to believe that a sizable percentage of Americans believe that Obama is not a US citizen and he is a Muslim; certainly those people are going to say they have no faith in Obama, or foreigners, or Muslims.

Personally, I have had many, many university courses in statistics and research; my conclusion is that neither statistics nor research is completely reliable and statisticians and researchers are all questionable; so I tend to be pessimistic in this regard.

The 2010 election will be interesting.  My prediction is that if the parties run on their records the Democrats will increase their majority and Republicans will diminish to near nonexistence.  The Democrats have enacted historic legislation that the voters elected them to do and the Republicans have proposed nothing and opposed everything.

In regard to the BP oil spill, Republicans, like Rep. Barton, have condemned Obama for enforcing the law in regard to BP’s responsibility and in a Congressional Hearing, Rep. Barton apologized to BP for Obama’s enforcement of the law. This does not make sense to me, regardless of how many campaign contributions that BP makes to Republicans. However, that seems to be Republican strategy and in every case since Obama took office, the Repbulicans have supported Corporate America greed and acted against the interests of the common American working man.

I am convinced that if the Republicans do win in 2010, it will be because the polls are correct in showing that American voters are totally ignorant; I just don’t believe it.

HOW TO LOVE BIN LADEN, SADDAM, THE TALIBAN, AND PRESIDENT OBAMA: ADVICE FROM MLK AND DALI LAMA

Sunday, July 4th, 2010

“But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you.” Jesus said.

Easily said, but how do you do that. Dr. Martin Luther King obviously succeeded and in one of the sermons from his book, A Knock at Midnight, Dr. King provides a formula.

“In order to love your enemies, you must first analyze yourself. . . .it was something that aroused the hate response within the individual.

“A second thing an individual must do . . . is to discover the element of good in his enemy, and every time you begin to hate that person and think of hating that person, realize that there is some good there and look at those good points that will overbalance bad points. . . .this simply means this that in the best of us, there is some evil, and in the worst of us, there is some good.

“Discover the element of good in your enemy. And as you seek to hate him, find the center of goodness and place your attention there and you will take a new attitude

“Another way that you love your enemy is this; When the opportunity presents itself for you to defeat your enemy, that is the time that you must not do it. . . . Love is creative, understanding goodwill for all men. It is the refusal to defeat any individual. When you rise to the level of love, with its great beauty and power, you seek only to defeat an evil system. Individuals who happen to be caught up in that system, you love, but you seek to defeat the system.

“The Greek language comes out with another word for love. It is the word, Agape. . . . Agape is something of the understanding, creative, redemptive goodwill for all men. It is a love that seeks nothing in return. It is an overflowing love. . . . And when you rise to love on this level, you begin to love men, not because they are likeable, but because God loves them. You look at every man and you love him because you know that God loves him. And he might be the worst person that you have ever seen.”

These words of Dr. King are powerful and directed at Christians; but what has loving your enemies to do with non-Christians? The virtues of loving or having compassion for your enemies are actually beneficial for all mankind and recognized by the philosophers of antiquity and Buddhist philosophy of today. Loving your enemies is the only way to true happiness in Buddhist philosophy and is the primary subject of the Dali Lama and psychiatrist Howard E. Cutler’s book, The Art of Happiness.

Love, or compassion, is the opposite of hatred; for Buddhists, love is the elimination of hate.

According to the Dali Lama:

“The destructive effects of hatred are very visible, very obvious, and immediate. For example when a very forceful thought of hatred arises within you, it totally overwhelms you and totally destroys your peace of mind; your presence of mind disappears completely. When such intense anger and hatred arises, it obliterates the best part of your brain, which is the ability to choose between right and wrong and the long term and short term consequences of your actions. Your power of judgment becomes totally inoperable; you can no longer function. It is almost like you have become insane. . . .

“For reasons such as these, anger is compared to an enemy. This internal enemy, this inner enemy, has no other function than causing us harm. It is our true enemy, our ultimate enemy. It has no other function than completely destroying us, both in the immediate and in the long term.”

These wise words of the Dali Lama are not the words of a religious prophet; they are the teachings of the philosopher and spiritual faith is not a necessity to profit from these words. All that is needed to benefit from the Buddhist philosophy is the intellect to comprehend and the incentive to respond.

There is an abundance of hatred being expressed in America today and every day it seems. Hatred is almost constantly being expressed on national TV, in newspapers and in the books found in the bookstore; hatred seem to be in vogue. It appears fashionable to hate terrorists, Muslims, corporations, labor unions, Congress, and the President of the United States of America; that doesn’t leave much of anything else to love. In this day and age, it seems that hatred is a sensational necessity for success in the media.

From a nationalistic point of view, looking at America’s most beloved allies and previous enemies today, like the United Kingdom, Germany, and Japan, you get the impression that loving your enemies just might have been an American value in the past; one can only wonder at the cause for all the hatred in American culture today.

Certainly, love and compassion for one’s enemies are not one of America’s values in the year 2010. Pity.

A RATIONAL EXPLANATION FOR STUPID REPUBLICANS

Saturday, July 3rd, 2010

In reading a news article about unemployment and the economy, on the internet, I read a question in the comments of readers from a blogger that I call Stupid Republican, to be definitive, and I thought the question needed to be answered rationally.

Here is Stupid Republican’s question:

“Obama has failed to create any jobs, failed to turn the economy around, failed to stop the oil leak, failed to protect the environment, failed to reduce the deficit and failed to bring the troops home from Afghanistan.
“If anyone deserves to be hit with a crazy stick its Obama himself for all his failures.”

This is a rational answer to Stupid Republican’s question:

Stupid Republican, wake up! Government is not responsible for jobs, Corporate America is; we live in a capitalistic nation. You can’t condemn the poor economy for too many Big Government employees and fault the same government for unemployment; intelligence prohibits such thinking.

There are many things that Corporate America could do to create employment, like expanding their market or producing better products that are a necessity, costs a nickel to produce, and sells for a dollar. That is what capitalist corporations do for a living and that is what production does to lower the number of workers that are unemployed.

There is actually nothing that the government can do to increase employment, including reducing the tax of the rich. President Bush failed to increase employment by reducing tax on the rich; it just made the rich richer and they did not need to hire more workers because the reduction of taxes increased their profits without their having the burden of an increase in labor overhead.

It is not government’s responsibility to market products and increase production; that is actually prohibited. The problem is that Corporate America wants to increase profits by simply controlling and raising prices, like the price of gasoline, which does not put America’s unemployed to work; it simply makes unemployed workers poorer and less able to buy gasoline.

Republicans just don’t seem to like poor working people and can’t figure out how corporate America can make profits selling products if poor unemployed people are too poor to buy them. To Stupid Republicans, this is a catch 22.

Wake up! Stupid Republicans always judge the economy by the stock market, which is Corporate America, and not statistics of Americans living in poverty, which is the unemployed poor. When the stock market and Corporate America fail, Stupid Republicans blame the government; it is not the government, it is Corporate America, stupid. Corporations are at a grave disadvantage because they are not human; consequently, corporations are incapable of being compassionate or caring about the poor and unemployed, much like Stupid Republicans. Yet, Corporate America controls the economy and employment, unfettered by the U.S. Government, since President Reagan eliminated regulations on Corporate America.

Why do Stupid Republicans oppose labor unions and promote Stupid Republican protest unions, like Tea-Baggers? Is it because Tea-Baggers carry guns and therefore are protected by the right to own arms provided by the U.S. Constitution? That appears to be the case.

As for President Obama not stopping the oil leak, I agree with you. The President refuses to approve of the most logical proposal for stopping the leak, which is to stuff the hole with Stupid Republicans who want to “Drill Baby, Drill”. Please write your Congressmen and tell them to pass legislation requiring the President to stuff the BP Oil Hole with Stupid Republicans.

I also agree that President Obama is at fault for not getting America out of Afghanistan; however, I also realize that the U.S. Army is the Bush PNAC politicized U.S. Army that refuses to end the wars they started and insist that Obama and voters support the troops instead or be guilty of being unpatriotic. The Bush appointed Army generals that are, of course, Stupid Republicans of necessity, threaten to pout and quit if President Obama will not allow them to keep their wars going and allow them to kill Muslims. The Stupid Republican Army is responsible for America’s wars and not President Obama.

Stupid Republicans and their armed Tea-Bagger compatriots have to realize that America is actually governed by the PNAC oriented U.S. Army and the forty-one percent of the U.S. Senate that is composed of Stupid Republicans. Why not ask their own Stupid Republican Forty-One Percent of the U.S. Senate to do something about unemployment and the war; they just might be able to make a difference and do something positive by simply voting yes once in a while instead of always no.

This essay should not be considered to assume that all Republicans are stupid; the Stupid Republicans chronicled here are just those Republicans who have obviously proved without a doubt that they are stupid by their utterances and behavior. Condolences to those Republicans who do not talk and behave stupidly; you are loved and neither one of you should feel offended by this essay.

GEMS OF WISDOM FROM THE MOUTH AND HEART OF THE GOLDGOOSE

Friday, July 2nd, 2010

I have discovered the futility of emptying the garbage can; the damn thing just gets filled up the next day.

It is a beautiful day for a healthy walk; I am thankful for all of those people who took advantage of it without me tagging along.

Surprisingly I am multi-tasked, I watched TV all afternoon and slept at the same time.

There is nothing better than curling up in bed at night with a good book; at least as long as the sharp edges of the book corners do not disturb your sleep.

Today, I ate in strict accordance with my daily weight loss diet; I am ahead of the game and will not have to eat for the next three days.

Almost every week I visit a friend in a nursing home and revive his self confidence because he beats the hell out of me at dominoes every time; I am handicapped, of course, because I only have ten fingers.

I was shocked when I entered my car today and discovered that someone had broken-into my car and rolled down all the windows; it was a great relief when I found that I had simply forgot that I had been to the car wash the day before.

I wasn’t able to wash the bed linens this morning as I had planned; I had forgotten that I planned to wash clothes and already had made the bed.

I got a new cell phone yesterday and it has a new ring, a band playing; today, I missed all my cell phone calls while looking for the parade with the band in it.

Absolutely, I should not be blamed for all of the bad habits that I inherited from my children.