Rant: Turn the Negative into a Positive

In the news yesterday: Atmospheric Concentration of CO2 tops 400ppm for the longest time in recorded history. The 350 parts per million threshold that scientists say is the maximum atmospheric concentration of carbon dioxide for a safe planet has been breached. We need to hold those in power – both government and private officials – accountable. Now.

If we don’t demand accountability, how can we not say this is game over for life as we understand it on the planet? All bets are off for our future, because it doesn’t seem likely we’re going to have one. Not as long as we continue to ignore this crucial problem. All other issues pale in comparison: civil rights, Iran’s nuclear problem, Greece and Ukraine, even the next Presidential election are irrelevant if we allow our ever-growing problem with climate to continue unchecked.

On the same day this news was reported, a House Science Committee voted to cut $320 million from NASA’s earth science research. These twisted, wrong-headed decisions, made out of willful ignorance and/or outright corruption are ultimately evil, immoral and criminal. The politicians who voted to cut science research when it is needed the most should be arrested and put on trial for treason.

The stakes have never been higher in our need to protect our planet and prevent the extinction of millions of plant and animal species, including our own species. We are now giving our future over to sociopaths and fools: We have left it up to them to determine the future of this planet and all life on it, threatened because of a few unnecessary, unhealthy businesses that enrich a tiny number of men (and women?). This is the height of insanity.

These people – and I use that term lightly- have already declared war. They don’t only endanger democracy by quashing our ability to have a say in how our government shapes law and policy – but they have violated all the sacrosanct laws that keep our global ecosystem viable. Their practices threaten the foundation of life on earth. Without breathable, non-toxic air, drinkable clean water or land that can produce food, none of us have hope for a future. Earthquakes are now directly traceable to oil drilling, but even as they acknowledge that fact, it hasn’t stopped the imbeciles in the Oklahoma legislature from voting to let oil companies continue their drilling. They should be stripped of office and thrown in jail. Their decision doesn’t only affect the people in Oklahoma anymore than the absurd vote in the House Science Committee only affects the people who who so blindly voted them into office.

What is taking us so long to address this in the appropriate manner? When do we officially declare those attempts to prevent and suppress  climate change solutions – let alone discussions, as Florida has done – as criminal acts? Urgenda is suing the Dutch government for endangering its people by not taking sufficient measures to address climate change. Where is our bold big action? We need to build a lawsuit to sue Koch Industries, their cronies in the complex of media and “expert” propagandists, the politicians that work for them, and especially the professional climate change deniers. We need to criminalize industrial polluters: from the oil industry to the fracking industry to industrial agriculture and pesticide manufacturers, along with the U.S. Government for endangering our citizens, the globe as a whole, those who are too young to vote or affect policy and those yet to be born.

We need to find the drive, focus and power to shut them all down, not as an act of protest, but as an act of law. Greenpeace should not be breaking the law when activists board an oil rig in the Arctic, they should be enforcing it. By allowing a few private parties to write our laws and determine our policy, our government has left behind  the rule of law along with its only purpose: that of serving and protecting citizens.

Our government agencies, even more so than the elected officials, have endangered our lives and health because they have less transparency and accountability. We have agency heads and decision-makers who have sold their soul for a few pieces of gold or a bit more influence. But in their ego-driven quest for power and money, they have yet to learn from us that they don’t have the right to sell off our future in the process. And the only way they will learn is if we tell them on no uncertain terms that they don’t have that honor. They will do everything in their power to make us forget that one simple truth : they work for us.  It’s time we behave as the authors and managers of our country’s future, take back our power and put our leaders on notice that they have to answer for their crimes. Our Constitution states this principle in no uncertain terms:  the people are within their legal rights to end a tyranny and a government that is too dangerous to continue.

Once this planet has been trashed to to point where there’s nothing viable left, we will have nowhere else to go and will either become unrecognizable as humans or simply no longer be. For me, the bigger tragedy will be that time when there won’t be any children or grandchildren left to ask “what did you do to stop them?”

The grandest tragedy is that the solution is so obvious and simple, yet impossible for us to accomplish.  Why?

The Sham of a Liberal-Conservative Opposition and Where the Real Conflict Lies

Campaign funding renders all our so-called leaders employees of their contributors.  The latest case in point is the recent letter from the 47 Republican Senators addressed to the Supreme Leader of Iran, warning of a reversal of any agreement the Obama Administration may make with Iran regarding their use of nuclear weapons or lack thereof.  The senator who initiated the letter has an agenda our mainstream, corporate-owned media neglected to mention. Senator Tom Cotton is far from the only politician who owes his Senate position to private, destructive industries that benefit no one but the owners. Is it any wonder that people give up on the idea that government is capable of accomplishing anything for the actual public good?

The question that the politicians and the media avoid is simple: does the U.S. public want war with Iran? You remember the public, otherwise known as citizens and tax payers who have to foot the bill for another misguided campaign into a foreign land. Their people and policies have posed no existential risk to our nation, but when has that fact stopped a good war? The cost of our last blunders will be bring us a trillion dollar plus bill. Other organizations estimate larger numbers. This number doesn’t include the cost of lives needlessly sacrificed, Iraqi, Afghan, Pakistani and American – and the fallout from grieving and displaced communities.

Polls state most citizens do not want another Middle East war, but our millionaire Senators have very little interest in what most citizens want.  They obfuscate the influence that the people, groups and industries who back their elections place on them, and by extension their public positions and proposed laws. And our corporate-owned media never think to ask them about their motives and secret backers. Instead, reporters and infotainment hosts accept their official arguments and statements as facts that need no further challenge or discovery.

Thanks to the independent, non-corporate organizations and media like CounterPunchThe Intercept and Democracy Now! we have a light shining on the private groups, individuals and industries to whom our mascot politicians hold their true allegiance.

What, Another Damn Blog?

Well, yes it is:  I suppose everyone has something to write about, even if it’s their own story in their own words.  In this one I’m not trying to sell anything or elucidate some grand ideology, though that will be for you, the reader, to decide.  I do want to record pieces of my life journey here and if it inspires or helps anyone, so much the better.

My purpose is to write about why and how viewing the world and our society within the limited, predefined frame foisted upon  us since infancy prevents us from discovering reality.  It doesn’t give us insight so much as it places blinders on us and narrows our vision to a simplistic, colorless palette of opposites – good vs. evil, left vs. right, thinking vs. feeling, man vs. woman. I can refer to us, not just me, dear reader, because we all experience the same culture, the same memes, the same type of media, the same educational model and the same Judeo-Christian “Western” slant in learning good from bad, right from wrong, beautiful from ugly.

Why do I care so much about this topic?  If it isn’t painfully obvious by now, this may not be a site you will enjoy visiting. But you may be tired, missing your morning coffee, or you may be distracted in some other way. I’m in no position to judge you, dear reader. Hopefully you’ll offer me that same courtesy. Suffice it to say I went through the terrifying process of having to dismantle and rebuild my own world view. It was the best thing I’d ever done, though I fought the changes tooth and nail. Looking back on how I saw the world and my place in it, I now see how stupid and miserable it made me.  I can never return to that state, nor would I want to.  And I’m still making renovations.

I am hoping you, the reader, know what I mean.  If not, I hope you are at least a bit intrigued.

The truth about our reality is far more interesting and more terrifying than what our parents, teachers and preachers told us.  It is also much more satisfying and fulfilling. The Universe is a huge, beautiful mystery, one with unlimited possibilities. It is the Universe, maybe one among many, that we are invited to explore, if only we dare.  But to even consider beginning that journey, we have to lose the chains that bind our mind to the conventional, traditional habits of our culture and promote ignorance and fear.  We need to be free thinkers.