17 November 2013

It is the lower middle class—that strata of independent farmers, small shopkeepers, craft and highly skilled workers, and small-scale entrepreneurs—that has been hit hardest by globalization. “Western industry has displaced traditional crafts—female as well as male—and large-scale multinational-controlled agriculture has downgraded the independent farmer to the status of hired hand,” writes journalist Barbara Ehrenreich. This has resulted in massive male displacement—migration, downward mobility. It has been felt the most not by the adult men who were the tradesmen, shopkeepers, and skilled workers, but by their sons, by the young men whose inheritance has been seemingly stolen from them. They feel entitled and deprived—and furious. These angry young men are the foot soldiers of the armies of rage that have sprung up around the world.

16 November 2013

A Clarion Call

 Dr. William Catton's qualified speculations have been for a long time that the global population will be approx. 10% of current levels by the end of the century. and that has evolved to now broader discussions in a much larger consensus of science to the "NTE", the Near Term Extinction of most mammalian species , including us within 30 to 40 years. I suspect that the reason this is not discussed openly and weighing on the general population because it's far too large and scary to contemplate. I would imagine the social construct would disintegrate in a flash and the chaos is too much to consider. The Great Spirit has a very large "soul harvest" unfolding. When the Union of Concerned Scientists published their "Warnings to Humanity" in November 1992 about the potential consequences of the destruction of our biosphere.. it barely made the news. Here it was on the 12th page of the paper while the front page was concerned with a hockey franchise debate.. a collective archetype walking willingly towards a disaster of immeasurable and incomprehensible scale.
~Ronald Douglas Bunston

13 November 2013

Looking back at the future

"...Once the experience of war makes visible the possibility of death that lies locked up in each moment, our thoughts cannot travel from one day to the next without meeting death’s face.” 

~Simone Weil


04 November 2013

In defense of chores

There are times that chores are not so pressing, although it isn't only in the autumn we are "chopping wood, carrying water"...and I'm thankful for that.
***
When I work outdoors all day, every day, as I do now, in the fall,
getting ready for winter, tearing up the garden, digging potatoes,
gathering the squash, cutting firewood, making kindling, repairing
bridges over the brook, clearing trails in the woods, doing the last of
the fall mowing, pruning apple trees, taking down the screens,
putting up the storm windows, banking the house - all these things,
as preparation for the coming cold...

when I am every day all day all body and no mind, when I am
physically, wholly and completely, in this world with the birds,
the deer, the sky, the wind, the trees...

when day after day I think of nothing but what the next chore is,
when I go from clearing woods roads, to sharpening a chain saw,
to changing the oil in a mower, to stacking wood, when I am
all body and no mind...

when I am only here and now and nowhere else - then, and only 
then, do I see the crippling power of mind, the curse of thought,
and I pause and wonder why I so seldom find
this shining moment in the now. 
~David Budbil

03 November 2013

In defense of beer:



According to numerous independent studies, moderate drinkers live longer and better than drunks or teetotalers. Beer is perfect for moderate drinking because of its lower alcohol content and larger volume compared with wine or spirits. And as that old radical Thomas Jefferson said, "Beer, if drank with moderation, softens the temper, cheers the spirit, and promotes health."

The truth is that beer is as all-natural as orange juice or milk (maybe even more so – some of those milk & OJ labels will surprise you). Beer doesn't need preservatives because it has alcohol and hops, both of which are natural preservatives. Beer is only "processed" in the sense that bread is: It is cooked and fermented, then filtered and packaged.

Twelve ounces of Guinness has the same number of calories as 12 ounces of skim milk: about 125. That's less than orange juice (150 calories), which is about the same as your standard, "full-calorie" beer. If beer were your only source of nutrition, you'd have to drink one every waking hour just to reach your recommended daily allowance of calories (2,000 to 2,500). And nobody's recommending you drink that many.

Beer not only has no cholesterol, it can actually improve the cholesterol in your body. In fact, drinking beer regularly and moderately will tilt your HDL/LDL cholesterol ratios the right way. You've got two kinds of cholesterol in your system: HDL, the "good" cholesterol that armor-plates your veins and keeps things flowing, and LDL, the "bad" cholesterol that builds up in your veins like sludge in your bathtub drain. Beer power-flushes the system and keeps the HDL levels up. According to some studies, as little as one beer a day can boost your HDL by up to 4 percent. 

Beer, especially unfiltered or lightly filtered beer, turns out to be quite nutritious, despite the years of suppression of those facts by various anti-alcohol groups. Beer has high levels of B vitamins, particularly folic acid, which is believed to help prevent heart attacks. After all, they sell brewer's yeast tablets in drug stores as vitamin B supplements; 

If you're someplace where you are advised not to drink the water, the local beer is always a safer bet. It's even safer than the local bottled water. 

The most amazing beer and health connection is something called xanthohumol, a flavonoid found only in hops. Xanthohumol is a potent antioxidant that inhibits cancer-causing enzymes,

Most studies have found that people who drink beer regularly (and moderately) not only don't develop beer bellies – they weigh less than non-drinkers. Beer can boost your metabolism, keep your body from absorbing fat and otherwise make you a healthier, less disgusting slob. Just drink it in moderation, as part of an otherwise healthy diet.

So that's it. Drink beer. You'll live longer and be happier. You won't get fat. In fact, you may weigh less. You'll boost your metabolism, improve your health and reduce your risk of clogged arteries, heart attack and cancer. What more could you want?

The River

upstream from white sand beaches are hamlets, paddies and canyons bombshells unexploded, cratered land, cratered faces  mangled extremities...