air water food and fellowship

How can we improve the
quality of life on
our planet?

We need to 

find and install cleaner technologies and more
and more energy sources which are renewable and nonpolluting
(sun, waves, wind, thermal, gravity, and maybe fusion)

get better information about health by promoting more research into what can keep us and our surroundings healthy
(based on past performance, we can’t depend on our government to get it right because special interests spoil the process, so, each of us needs to find our own path to health)

find out how to provide ourselves with better governance
(take the money out of politics)

find better and better ways to eliminate poverty
(starting now, make sure everyone gets a high-quality education and let the top-tier rich pay for it because they will receive a huge financial benefit down the road and will be able to reminisce about how they saved the country), and…

Today, we
humans are
polluting the air
we breathe, the water
we drink, and the food we eat.

What needs to be changed? We need the United Nations to strictly enforce antipollution laws and complete its goal of spreading basic human rights throughout the world. Our UN needs to get some backbone and fly right. It needs to be a better tool for humanity.

Is the UN a start in the right direction? Does the world need a president and a congress with the presidents of countries becoming governors of their countries?

With everyone having the right to vote in a world with police but no soldiers and no weapons of war. It wouldn’t be a utopia but there’d be a lot less suffering in the world which would probably produce more happiness, contentment, and security.

This is a dream of many folks, and sometimes dreams come true. When? Will it be now or during the next generation, or will it happen when it’s too late?

We are all
in the same pot,
so, shouldn’t we admit it
and
forgive old wounds for the sake of the future?

Will we be able to stop poisoning ourselves and the life around us? Otherwise our home could slowly degrade to the point all life will be choked out except bacteria.

If bacteria survive, they would be the parents of earth’s second generation which might turn into a nightmare because of the pollution left by the first generation.

 

 

Advertisements

Bernie’s got my vote!

Aren’t
many of the best
solutions usually simple?

The Scandinavian countries use the power
of capitalism to generate wealth
and then use the wealth
to make sure

everyone in
their country is
taken care of. Making
sure everyone is cared for is
called socialism. So, it seems the
remedy is not capitalism or socialism…

but their combination is.

The solution yielding the quickest
and the best changes for
the betterment of
everyone
could
turn out to be…
taking the money out of politics.

Everyone is being cared for
and getting as much
education
as can
be
held, and
opportunity is still
present because capitalism is still present.

The only difference is the rich are still rich but not filthy rich. Everyone has a shot at having it all, health and happiness and the vicissitudes which go with them.

Idealistic but doable. We have the model so why not be wise and follow it. It’s proven to work. Maybe the greatest part of our history is yet to be written.

Bernie’s got my vote!

taking the money and lying out of politics

What would it take to keep the money and lying out of politics?

If you are interested in the challenge of taking the money and lying out of politics. (Both need to go.) Please feel free to use all or parts of this essay.

Let’s make it an issue. Telling folks what can happen to our country by taking money and lying out of politics can be breathtaking.

Some of what follows is directed at a politicians, but most of it is directed at our political system and what it allows.

The political system in place is different from what we had in the early 1950s. At that time politicians went to jail for accepting money (bribes) above the amount they were paid by the people.

Later, to change this bribe situation, congress itself passed laws allowing themselves to accept extra money as a helpful thing in representing their constituents because they needed a lot of money to get reelected, and their argument was…If we spend our time raising money to be reelected, there would be much less time for us to tend to the people’s business, and this tending is what we were elected to do.

The ideas below are not new ideas or my ideas. I’m sure many have thought of them before; however, I hope I can put things in a way that helps spread the idea that we can clean up our current mess in Washington, DC.

So, how do we clean up our political system? Will not allowing money and lying to pollute our political process clean it up?

I say yes, and it will take a while, but it will never happen if we keep talking about it without starting the process. And starting only takes place in the ever present moment with the intent to make one’s voice heard.

So..what may be a good process to start things rolling? One way might be to…

Recruit a well-known person who is willing to promote the initial actions needed to start things and also be the spokesperson for the movement. He or she would assist in recruiting a central coordinator (who might be a college-president type of person) whose purpose would be to aggregate ideas for keeping money and lying out of our political system.

Who would oppose such an idea? People who profit from our present state of affairs: politicians and those who pay them money to gain “favor”.

We can start by getting suggestions from…College student organizations, think tanks, social committees or professors, and alumni…asking for and coming up with solutions from the student body, neighbors, friends, etc. 

Town Halls could be asked for doable and innovative ideas for getting money and lying out of our politics, and could be asked to come up with ways to make this a major issue in 2016. 

Ask each college group, town hall, and individual contributors send their best ideas to the coordinator’s website who then publishes those on the Internet with credits (and multiple credits when needed). Then any citizen will have a chance to change or to add to or make original suggestions. With all this brain power, we may have many practical and amazing suggestions from which others can whittle out the the suggestion until the a nugget or nuggets are seen and laws created and passed.

An example: Make laws not permitting running-and-elected politicians to lie, misrepresent the truth and half-truths (in effect for twenty-four hours a day), and give huge fines which are paid to a charity or the opponents who were lied about. What about having the politicians who have lied sit in a corner with a dunce cap on for an hour or two on live TV in prime time and streamed over the net. Or some other type of suitable public humiliation.

In order to serve in their elected  positions, the elected would have to sign an agreement to not lie and to participate in these humiliations, if caught in a lie.

It’s not against the law to lie, but it should be for politicians!

Why doesn’t it bother us when there’s so much truth-bending, half-truths, and outright lies by our elected officials? It’s because we have grown accustomed to it. It’s the normal state of affairs. And many politicians can’t resist lying because they know it’s much easier to tear down someone’s work or reputations than to create their own good solutions.

Some try to destroy opponents by lying about what he or she stands for, and a doubt is born, and then the liar may win because many believed the lie. Their real message: I’m not very good but I lie better than the other candidate.

Candidates should be speaking to us about a better future and how they are going to make it happen, but that would take a lot of planning and building.

Why is the political money from the rich so appealing? Because it’s not hard to raise. It just keeps piling up without too much effort but with invisible strings attached. Politicians need a lot of money to get reelected. 

A civilian oversight committee could keep our elected officials from passing laws or rules that protect themselves and promote their own welfare, like passing a law that raises their salary, or having to work only twelve days a month, etc., etc.

Are we stupid or are we hypnotized for allowing the elected to create laws just for their benefit and for allowing influence to be purchased legally?

Doesn’t having a lot of money give unfair leverage when used in our political system? Is it because money tempts and so allows the shouts of the rich to drown out the whispers of the rest of us? Voting is our voice. Who wants to have only a whisper?

Perhaps, part of any practical way to take the money out of politics would be to create a law making it a treasonous crime for elected officials, their family members, and those running to be elected to accept gifts, favors, or money from businesses or individuals. The government can give equal amounts for campaigning and when elected a good annual salary including a decent vacation.

We could make it a treasonous crime for a current or a former elected official to accept any favors, gifts, or money for casting a vote for laws passed or blocked. The paid-for votes going on right now are turned into  legal highway robberies from all of us.

This is hard stuff but it’s necessary to start the process of cleaning things up so the best ideas for improving the circumstances of the average citizen will have a much better chance of getting the attention of the elected.

This can actually happen because of the different type of politicians we can elect during the next decade or two.

Give candidates equal and free time on TV and radio as many have suggested. Onward and upward.

The candidate’s use of the money supplied by the government for his or her campaign will give us an idea of how they might treat our tax dollars.

This new playing field could also cause a sharp rise in voter participation in campaigns. Voters giving their time instead of their money. I know…it’s idealistic to think this way, and I’m not the first, but it is possible.

And why not make it an act of treason to sneak loopholes into our government’s rules and laws? A loophole is a provision in a rule or law only a few people know about because it’s hidden away in its hundreds or thousands of pages of text. A loophole can give the user advantages over competitors or the ability to receive unearned income and may even get the income tax-free.

Here’s a change that most of us have wanted for a long time:

Have each piece of legislation be concerned with a single issue. This would yield a true voting record.

And this would mean more work for the legislators. They might actually read the proposed laws and keep their copies of it in order to compare it to the law after it’s passed if need be.

There would be plenty of time for having all laws be single-issue laws if our elected officials worked eight-hour days like most of us. Of course give our representatives an annual vacation. Let’s aim high. Nobody falls though the net in the USA. Everyone is worthwhile.

Things that need to be changed can be changed if we demand them to be changed, and we can be sure that nothing will change until we demand. How do we demand?

We can demand by refusing to quit pressing for change until we can vote no matter how poor we are. And until all votes in a presidential election will count no matter where a voter lives. This would mean doing away with the vote-canceling Electoral College which is a part of our history, and so “don’t mess with it.” The Electoral College is no longer needed for its original purpose. 

The states don’t have electoral colleges, so in states everyone’s vote counts when electing a governor.

We need to vote for candidates who support “no lying” and “no money” for politicians except for a good paycheck from the government.

Vote for hard prison time for legislators who have access to special knowledge and use the information to profit from using it or selling it in insider trading deals.

Allowing “Vote-for-mine-and-I’ll-vote-for-yours.” voting harms everyone and the law-making process. It would make things better if this type of agreement was against the law.

Law makers don’t always read throughly what they are voting for, some add wording which gives favors for their cohorts back home, and they have the habit of tacking the favors onto big important pieces of legislation.

This type of “adding to” happens because we allow it. Things like this are pure corruption which should not be allowed to happen.

In the future we should elect only persons willing to take away the power of the elected to make laws which protect themselves from being arrested for misappropriating (stealing) the tax payer’s money by using loopholes or other methods to steal tax dollars for themselves or their friends back home.

Our elected officials need oversight and would eventually come to like it. It would make them honorable and safe. This is my opinion and I hope yours too.

a fair shake…cut from a different canvas

What about the way our country is maturing? Is there really no way to help the poor and the soon-to-be poor to move up into a better life? If there is, why not do it?

When receiving today’s minimum wage combined with a minimal education, there’s no money left over to save. Then it’s so much easier to get into debt, and then it’s much more easy to earn a bad credit rating. Why do so many of us start out with so much already against them?

The snowballing events above wouldn’t happen near as often when one is paid a decent minimum wage and given a decent education. A decent minimum wage and a good education opens the door for folks to have a real chance to enhance their lives.

Are we trending toward a medieval class system? Here are some suggestions to reverse our movement toward becoming a two-class society.

Shouldn’t our #1 priority be a high quality education for all of our children? Having a top notch educational system is our country’s best way to protect itself from enemies domestic and foreign.

We the people need to pay teachers more. We need the folks who have a special love for teaching and the ability to give students a craving for knowledge and the ability to impart a special curiosity for things which have no limits like art, language, science, and mathematics 

Let’s stop loosing these special teachers because we don’t set aside enough money to pay them what they are worth. Cut waste and loopholes to get the funds, and if that’s not enough, raise taxes to pay these gifted folks.

It’s not healthy for us to continually spend the largest portion of our money on military activities, and it’s very healthy for us to spend the largest portion of our money on our youth. What happens to folks who grow up being neglected?! We are becoming sick as a country and need to change our ways to become healthy. We are ignoring much of our potential.

Having a basic or core curriculum for all students will keep states from cheating their youngsters out of a good basic education. An education which will support them all of their lives. A firm educational foundation allows one to find and consume new or necessary information when needed while automatically strengthening our country at the same time.

Education is the critical fuel for our country’s successful future and influence in the world. Guns and bombs will take us only so far. Or too far…as the the rising cost guns and bombs and the structure to use them help to starve our children’s minds. We are only as strong as our weakest link: the care of our young.

The goal: to make every public school a place of high quality education and to match and then surpass the best educational systems in the world. Our universities are already there.

Today, (is it many of or most of?) our elected officials in washington legally accept money to consider voting a certain way which will help the contributor or accept money to consider adding an exemption in a law for a contributor (which will allow the continuous piling up of extra millions for the contributor) and if our representatives don’t do the favor, the flow of money is likely to stop from that particular spigot. For today’s politicians, money is like air.

How can we cure the swollen political influence of rich folks and rich companies? All that’s lacking is the will and determination to treat ourselves better by changing what’s going on in the District of Columbia.

The cure is to make it an issue that money be somehow taken out of politics. This isn’t rocket science. It’s doable and may take large amounts of creativity and overcoming massive objections from the rich. What? Why? They are already rich. What’s the problem?

What about a national competition paid for by interested folks or the government. Hammer out the final product. And call it Political Reform or another apt title. And call the movement The Political Reform Movement or something better.

The obvious key is to elect folks who will pass a Political Reform Law into law. If this were to happen, there’s a really good chance we will see politicians who are cut from a different canvas.

We should be watching out for the talking heads who tell us “We don’t have to fix anything because our great nation will endure and will rise again a better nation.” When we hear these words and believe them, it gives us a chance to sit down and say to ourselves, “Well, I and my family and friends will die before things get really bad.” Or, “I’m only one person, and if I don’t help out to change things, my small part won’t be missed by the total effort.”

As we breathe, right now, is the time to ramp up the things to help ourselves to have a new, vast, well educated middle class, and in doing so, it’s my thinking we will aid all other life on the planet.

We can actually begin today to help ourselves by not wasting our talent and by not allowing health care and incarceration to operate as for-profit businesses because this allows huge amounts of our money to be given away with no end in sight. The government is best suited to run these two important services because the government is not working for a profit and is looking to serve. The sooner we  restore our prison systems and get a healthcare system similar to Canada’s or France’s, the better we all will be.

What is the tipping point for things going in the direction of a two-class society? Is it when we finally realize we will never be able to take the money out of our politics? Will there ever be a better time to find out than now?

Can we really end the great majority of existing poverty by giving folks a decent minimum wage and by paying all teachers more to attract more of the gifted folks in tech and industry who would love to teach but can’t afford to?

Can one attend to the needs of one’s self without the help of others? Don’t we all need water and electricity and roads and jobs etc., etc.

Are many of those at the top getting so greedy that it’s almost impossible for them to share large portions of their wealth with those who need a period of proper assistance in order to prosper?

One way to actually get the money we need to properly educate and meet the needs of our citizens might be to have a single tax rate for everyone as some of the Scandinavian countries do. What’s wrong with everyone getting a fair shake?!

Aren’t many of the best solutions usually simple?

The Scandinavian countries use the power of capitalism to generate wealth and then use the wealth to make sure everyone in their country is taken care of. Making sure everyone is cared for is called socialism. So, it seems the remedy is not capitalism or socialism…but their combination is.

The solution yielding the quickest and the best changes for the betterment of everyone could turn out to be…taking the money out of politics.

Why not have a national competition to see who can bring forth the best ways to change things to insure the successful future of our country and its future citizens. Pay the winners: the teams, citizen groups, individuals, and runners-up substantial amounts of money and also give them honor and prestige. Make it reality TV?

Then, while we’re at it, why not promote a world-wide competition to create a plan for the successful future of our planet and all of its inhabitants. I’ve written a scenario of how the success of our planet comes about. It’s called “Message to the Cosmos” and is the first chapter in my book Discovering the Obvious.

In the short story, things had to get desperately bad for humanity to wake up. Unfortunately this is par for the course or it might be called the default mode or the standard operating procedure for humans.

There is an almost infinitely better way. Doesn’t reason tell us to follow the path of the successful models already in existence? Again, with successful examples staring us in the face and showing us how, why aren’t we giving everyone a fair shake?

Could it be we live lives where the thoughts about the possibility of giving everyone a fair shake never come about? Or, is it that we believe everyone is getting a fair shake already, and when the thoughts of changing things so that everyone gets a fair shake come up, we are against it for some reason. Or, we are for giving everyone a fair shake, but as one person, we don’t know what to do against a huge establishment that’s claiming all is OK.

What’s stopping us? Are we waiting to get permission? Do we have to wait for the conversion of folks who get off on having people to feel sorry for or the folks who have to have the feeling that others are coveting what they have?

Or will we begin to wake up and start voting to change things now instead of waiting for conversions which may never happen?

Is it that we’re not as helpless as we feel?

a healthier country

If we were a healthier country, would this give us the frame of mind to expend the energy it would take to find and elect and appoint a better class of representatives and officials?

These folks may be hard to find and hard to convince. They can come from rich and poor so long as they are not desperate for more money or have hidden agendas and have the character not to accept favors from anyone. Their mission will be to help the country and everyone in it and including the folks controlling a lot of assets.

Do we have the guts to take the money out of politics?

We have the votes but don’t have the guts to get out and vote.

If eating healthier helps us to restore our guts, (what a segue) here’s how we can restore our country and ourselves…

We still have the ability to see our way back to judge anew what is healthy and what is not? Will we do it?

To be healthy one needs good nutrition and a good level of daily activity. It’s been established that moving around doing everyday tasks is better for us than a strong workout and then sitting for most of the day. Doing both are good yet only one is key.

Is this why stone age tactics and foods are so effective for present day humans? Stone age humans had to forage and hunt for their food. They ate roots; nuts, seeds; soft stems and berries; herbs; fruits; eggs; honey; plants like seaweed and kale; and all types of meat and fats. Fat is not an enemy; it’s one of the things which has the goods.

We were told by nutritionists that eating grains was natural which meant all cereal and all bread and pasta products were supposed to be good for us.

Even our government suggested eating grain was good for us. Well, grains can keep us alive and that’s about it! How can this be? One theory is wheat flower is good for business and no one is twisting anyone’s arm.

It turns out almost all grain products, when eaten, turn quickly to sugar, even whole grains turn to sugar. And dealing with the huge amounts of sugar over extended periods of time makes a person sick.

The body’s never ending struggle to deal with the large, unnatural amounts of sugar day after day and year after year doesn’t give the immune system the nutrition it needs, so one may more easily be overcome with disease. If this doesn’t happen, then diabetes is one’s lot and one’s immune system will still be highly vulnerable.

Without healthy food and exercise we’re in a pickle, and we become a receptacles for the pharmaceutical industry. It gives me no pleasure to present the following quote.

The quote is from Dr. John Virapen, former general manager of Eli Lilly in Sweden, whistleblower, and author of Side-Effect: Death.

“Pharmaceutical companies want to keep people sick. They want to make others think that they are sick. And they do this for one reason: money.

Pharmaceutical companies invest more than 35,000 Euro per physician each year to get them to prescribe their products. More than 75 percent of leading scientists in the field of medicine are ‘paid for’ by the pharmaceutical industry.

Corruption prevailed in the approval and marketing of drugs in some cases…

Illnesses are made up by the pharmaceutical industry and specifically marketed to enhance sales and market shares for the companies in question. Pharmaceutical companies increasingly target children.”

Is the pharmaceutical business a legal racket and yet a life saver? It’s sort of a “can’t live with them and can’t live without them” situation. 

Yet more important is having a look at the way we supply energy to our selves. A diet composed mainly of wheat flower is very bad for us, and makes the body do back flips to keep us at a semblance of normality.

To change things for the better, eat a paleo diet. Then your body will not think it’s starving when it begins to digest what you’ve eaten.

Hunger rarely happens with a paleo diet. It’s the difference between a sugar high and a nutritious high. The sugar high needs more sugar to keep it going and the nutritious high is not anxious for more food.

The two books below tell us about the real world of health. This essay is based on the information in them and my personal experience after reading Dr. Sears’ book.

Dr. Al Sears’ book: P.A.C.E. The 12-Minute Fitness Revolution
&
The first half of Nora T. Gedgaudas’(CNS, CNT) book: Primal Body, Primal Mind: Beyond the Paleo Diet for Total Health and Longer Life

what’s right

Are we moving from a world of winning to a world of survival? Or will opportunity win out? Do better laws make a country stronger and a better place to live and bring up a family?

Who gets to define better?

Did our founders give us a foot in the door to freedom and justice, and are we the ones who should take freedom and justice home and give our foot a rest? Would stopping the trend toward having rich overlords as in olden times who owned enough stuff to keep almost everyone else poor, work?

Is the answer a matter of setting it up so folks will to do what’s right whether it’s their idea or not. This is what well written laws are for. If so, where to start? Maybe a good start would be to take the money out of the lives of the politicians. Literally.

Pay an amount for their expenses and send a stipend to his or her family’s bank account. Have for all qualified candidates a reasonable amount of government funding to use for vote-getting, TV time for speeches and debates, and travel. This at a minimum should (with some adjustments and better ideas) allow candidates to travel around and have outlets for their ideas without having to spend very much of their own money.

When growing up I remember hearing about scandals and politicians going to jail for their crooked deeds. Somewhere along the way the politicians changed the laws (I guess because they could) and made it legal to receive money from grateful admirers.

Should we begin by voting in laws which prohibit politicians from receiving money from anyone or any organization accept a paycheck from the government for their work as servants of the citizens and not be able to raise their own salary. And really important, all of their rules of procedure must pass the muster a civilian oversight committee. (No vetoes by a single person allowed, etc.)

Will getting the money out of politics change what happens here? Will everyone still be free yet the rules and laws will begin to be fairer? Would change begin to depend on the quality of an idea instead of the will of a person or group who has a lot of money?

Aren’t there a lot of better places to put the billions we pour into politics for campaigns and political pull? Should such an obvious question have to be asked? Isn’t it one for all and all for one? If so, wouldn’t it take care of everybody?

From what I’ve seen on film and TV and heard and read of the Scandinavian countries, the Danish, Norwegian and Swedish folks have figured it out. And they have their problems like all countries do, yet their educational systems are among the very best systems on earth, and they have happy, creative and prosperous societies, and they do their best to see that everyone gets a fair shake and basic needs are met.

There are higher taxes in Scandinavia which pay for all of the education and health care costs and many other needed social services as well as retirement benefits.

Somewhere I got the idea the folks there pay about fifty percent of their income to the government and get a very long list of benefits. I haven’t researched the income tax rates in Scandinavia, so the rates may be different than what I’m presenting here.

Health is the most important human concern but little attention is given to it until it turns bad or there’s an accident or health problems are inherited.

Why would anyone keep another person’s family from getting the health care they need? Healthcare shouldn’t be a cash cow for investors. Why profit from one’s fear of large medical bills? We can get on the road to becoming an enlightened people by instituting a one-payer healthcare system similar to Canada’s.

Does the average person in Scandinavia have a much better chance to be happy and fulfilled than the average person here in the USA? Is it that once healthcare and education are assured, the rest of life is pure adventure and any worries will be created by the worrier and not by the rich wanting to keep their loopholes in place and their tax bracket low.

The really good thing about the Scandinavian countries is that the citizens don’t have to give up their lust for riches. Riches are still available as they are here, but riches there don’t get to obscene levels. The excess is poured back into the country for the benefit of all, even for the richer folks.

And when one needs assistance (for example, better schools) the better schools are there for everyone in Scandinavia, but Scandinavia’s full coverage assistance doesn’t exist here. Why? Is it that folks have to demand it? How do you demand? Vote and encourage others to vote.

a nook

Do we have what might be called a nook here in our universe? And is our nook’s best feature its isolation?

Is the universe unbelievably vast and cold with hot spots and we are one of the many side shows having bloomed? Is it that the universe doesn’t care about us or any of the other possible sideshows? Why should it?

Isn’t caring the sideshow’s job?

Is it that the universe doesn’t care but supplies what is necessary for adventures to happen?

Is it have, do, be or be, do, have or etc.? Whatever the case, activity happens. Do. Doing. Done. Even when we do nothing, aren’t there billions of chemical and electrical processes going on in our bodies each second we live?

Their purpose is to keep us alive and healthy.

And to pay nature back for life and everything else, we’re the busy little bees knowingly defiling its nook.

Why? The Big Three. A lust for money (used for control), a lust for belief control, and a lust for selling the power to control. Generally speaking, you can reduce them to Money Religion and Politics.

All necessary things but being abused. The three things we’re “not supposed to talk about in polite conversation.” Why is this? Are there better examples out there most of us don’t know about?