May I let my voice be a clarion call. I will use these words for justice. I will use these words for truth. And humour.

Sunday, July 31, 2011


An Important Personal Reason why Cannabis should be Legalized

Like many Americans, and many people around the world, I use drugs every day.  I'm truly afraid the drugs are going to lead to an early death. 

I have what's known in the insurance industry as a "pre-existing condition."  In other words, I'm over forty, and I'm alive.

I'm trying not to think that the US government wants me to die early, but the impact of their drug policy might honestly mean that I will die 5-15 years earlier than I otherwise would.  See, I take Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs(NSAIDs) every day, twice a day, and have been doing so for fifteen years.  Every time I get a new doctor, they tell me these drugs are not good for my stomach, and as I understand it also bad for my kidneys and/or my liver.  If I do not take these medications, I will experience severe debilitating pain on my chest that starts at the center of my sternum, which radiates through my chest to my back.  Unmedicated, it feels like I am being impaled by a telephone pole, and I am incapacitated to do anything except be really sad and really grouchy.  The NSAIDs are able to successfully mask the pain, and for that I am grateful.  

The rub, however, is threefold:
  1. Taking these NSAIDs every day will cause gastro-esophageal reflux disease (GERD) symptoms akin to a really bad heartburn, which could lead to esophageal cancer (I do not want to go out that way).   I will have debilitating dyspepsia if I do not take a proton-pump inhibitor such as Prilosec/Omeprazole to counteract the stomach problems caused the the NSAIDS.  Doctors tell me that taking PPI's long term is a bad idea.  After trying other solutions suggested while being bounced among general practitioners and specialists in several different managed-care plans (switching jobs, going to school, switching to my spouse's plan, etc) and each time going through the same process without positive results, I shrug my shoulders because there has been no other solution that works.  And I feel like a pinball, but that's beside the point.  In short, the doctors I have seen have not been able to help me cure this, so I palliate it with daily doses of drugs that have the potential to kill me.
  2. Marijuana is illegal, and is not being researched.  The proper mix of extracted cannabinoids done up pharmaceutical-style could allow me to live my life without NSAIDs and PPIs.  Aspirin is derived from willow trees, but if we were to chew on willow bark, we wouldn't get nearly as strong an effect.  In current strains of cannabis, the way the current strains of cannabis grow, perhaps their effect is mild as well, compared to a directed dose.  But as long as the federal government of the US remains ideologically sandbagging and obstructive of research, a cure (or less harmful pain alleviation) remains forever stillborn.
  3. After a nice stressful day at the office, I like to relax one way or the other.  In the state I reside in for the next seven weeks, it is legal for me to choose how I do that.  When I move to another state, I will have only one legal choice.  Note that NSAIDs + Alcohol is known to be a particularly bad combination.  I do know that NSAIDs do not have a warning label advising against using them with cannabis.  I wish there was more research on not only the dangers of "marijuana" as a category, but also the benefits and effects of THC, CBD, CBN, and the nimiety of other cannabinoids.  And I wish we could trust ourselves and each other enough to allow individuals to investigate for themselves, freely and responsibly.
  4. Getting high is a helpful catalyst to bring my spiritually centered vibe into arriving.  When I vape, eat, or smoke cannabis--especially out amid and among nature--there is a form of commune and connection with a heaven-as-earthly divine.  I find it's important to do this infrequently (<14 or 28 days in between uses for a spiritual practice.  for medical use, in lighter doses daily or b.i.d.).

. .
chords (from the song, "Hunger Inside."):
But [x22422 or Amaj9] you         …are [E]here.
I’m not a[
E]lo-one [E]in this [002455 or A5]fe-e-ear.
The or-[
D9]ig---[D9]in---[D]al [E]seer.
My [
Bm]faith [Bm]says you [Bm]h[B9]e-[B9]ear (me).

i'm in love, i'm in love, i'm in love, i'm in love.
i'm in love, i'm in love, i'm in love, i'm in love.
i'm in love, i'm in love, i'm in love, i'm in love.

i'm in love.
i'm in love.

that woman just touched the ceiling with both hands
standing on her tippy-toes in high heel reebok hightop sneakers.
she touched the ceiling with both hands
and started pushing up.  

i saw it.  

she said, "this.  this, this is your heaven... right here.
and i am pushing up,"

as her halo started to glow and grow.

i saw her standing on her tipsy toes
aaaaaand then she got all dragon's-breathy.

she had on a tank top, and her shoulders started to ripple.
she grew tall, taller, tallest until she was standing 20 kilometers high
staring, face to face, with the sun.

she stood straight, pushing up the sky like the goddess athena, and the warrior princess elena(pronounced "eee-leena") "zine" xena

she had on a short-bob hairdo, just like any other superhot superhero might occasion to do once in a while for flair...

she had on a tank top, and from the contour of her shirt it appeared....

anyway... she's a superhot superhero.

i said, "earlier, i saw her, first push the ceiling up
pushed the ceiling up, speaking the dragon's breath, from eight, to 8', 5" high....",

as the heels on her shoes grew, 
and the length of her legs grew, 
and the strong strength of her shoulders from crew
as that strong strength grew,
so she did, too.

colors: red, yellow, white. mood: hopeful. chant/prayer/mantra: may all the text you read be written upon the inside of your eyelids,
may some of the text you read be bichromatic (e.g. yellow and green), and in cursive script.
may you at least once read the essential metaphysical text with your senses wide open. pax hominibus, agape to all, joel

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Thursday, July 28, 2011


Solar Power is Fastest Growing Industry in US

And it can create a ton of jobs.

I think that is one reason why solar energy is being resisted.  The other reason is that it frees the consumer from being tied to rising fossil fuel prices, which the energy industry magnates do not want.  Here is a brilliant comment which explains how our economy's capitalistic primary driver leaves  from slashdot user fuzzyfuzzyfungus:

There is are a couple of unfortunate wrinkles in what would otherwise be true:

If you don't have money, it scarcely matters what the price of goods is. You are still fucked. For virtually everybody this impecunious, having money = having a job, not selling some bonds or re-allocating your portfolio in the direction of a higher-dividend asset assortment. Given the er... not exactly small... number of people who have fallen off this particular bus(with the additional fun that periods of joblessness do wonders for one's future prospects of being re-hired...) "jobs" as something close to an end in itself does represent a net gain for a substantial number of people.

Secondly, you say that "Ideally you would want a world where you have unlimited energy that required no money (ie jobs). This is true If and Only If the gains from increased efficiency are allocated in a manner that gives you a slice of the expanding pie. If, however, the pie is expanding; but your share of it is shrinking even faster(because whatever you do is an "inefficiency", you are quickly sliding toward point #1.

Empirically, a great many people have reason to be concerned, and to have no particular room to hope that even steady encheapening of goods will allow them to do better than tread water, since labor is definitely one of the goods being encheapened. As this [] cheery little J.P. Morgan report notes, in a discussion of the improvement of corporate margins: "There are a lot of moving parts in the margin equation, but as shown in the second chart, reductions in wages and benefits explain the majority of the net improvement in margins. This trend has continued; as we have shown several times over the last two years, US labor compensation is now at a 50-year low relative to both company sales and US GDP (see EoTM April 26, 2011)."

Improvements in efficiency do you absolutely no good if somebody with more market power than you have is capturing them. This would appear to be the case. Under such conditions, the people with less market power(ie. about the bottom 95%) don't have a rational interest in efficiency; because they won't capture the gains from it. While(from the perspective of people's actual state of knowledge) the fascination with "jobs" might be largely sentimental populism, it is arguably not economically irrational. If essentially all gains from efficiency(which includes reduction in human resources costs) are being captured by people who aren't you, it is very much in your interest to demand greater inefficiency and attempt to roll back the reduction in demand for you.

Only in a society where everybody has a boat is the fact that the 'rising tide lifts all boats' a comforting one. If a substantial portion of the population is stuck in the mud, the rising tide is not a welcome development...

Here's a good link on how little subsidies the solar industry gets from the US government.  It's as if the government WANTS solar to wither and die on the vine, and would prefer to have an untenable and security-problematic fossil fuel system as long as it can.  Hey, what gives, America?

lyrics: "it would be so fine to see your face at my door, it wouldn't have to last very long" -flaming lips
colors: green
mood: okay
chant/prayer/mantra: this is a beautiful garden, it has a dangerous guardian.

pax hominibus, 
agape to all, 

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Monday, July 25, 2011


Glen Eden

Wednesday, July 13, 2011


Re: Fw: Go Cairo!!!

[hmmmmm.....  seems the images are all stripped out.  must be how they're embedded or linked in the email.  joel does not like this trend.]

Hi Mom,

Thanks for tuning me in to that.  I didn't know that the military had that many dogs trained for war like that.  In my opinion, there's nothing laudable about it.  And as to the ethics behind it, the premise of their conditional statement is false: "
If it's ethical to send humans into combat, then why not dogs?"

In my lifetime, I have yet to see the US get into an ethically-justifiable war, according to my understanding of Christian, or even just human, ethics.  If the ethical code is based on empire, then with the principles that guide an empire ethic, yes, send humans, dogs, and sharks with lasers attached to their fins. 

In the meantime, we're spending $250,000,000 on dog armor, and I wonder how much on training, etc. 

Many blessings,

"You never change things by fighting the existing reality.
To change something, build a new model that makes
the existing model obsolete."
 -Buckminster Fuller (Architect and Geometrist)

On 13 July 2011 15:17,  wrote:

----- Original Message -----
Subject: FW: Go Cairo!!!

-------Original Message-------

Subject: Fw: Go Cairo!!!
Date: Sat, 9 Jul 2011 16:20:52 -0400

----- Forwarded by  on 07/09/2011 04:20 PM -----
Date: 07/09/2011 09:06 AM
Subject: Go Cairo!!!

The Dog That Cornered Osama Bin Laden  
When U.S. President Barack Obama went to Fort Campbell, Kentucky, last week for a highly publicized, but very private meeting with the commando team that killed Osama bin Laden, only one of the 81 members of the super-secret  SEAL DevGru unit was identified by name: Cairo, the war dog.
Cairo, like most canine members of the elite U.S. Navy SEALs, is a Belgian Malinois. The Malinois breed is similar to German shepherds but smaller and more compact, with an adult male weighing in the 30-kilo range.
Untitled 1762
(German shepherds are still used as war dogs by the American military but the lighter, stubbier Malinois is considered better for the tandem parachute jumping and rappelling operations often undertaken by SEAL teams. Labrador retrievers are also favoured by various military organizations around the world.)
Untitled 1763
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Like their human counterparts, the dog SEALs are highly trained, highly skilled, highly motivated special ops experts, able to perform extraordinary military missions by SEa, Air and Land (thus the acronym).
The dogs carry out a wide range of specialized duties for the military teams to which they are attached: With a sense of smell 40 times greater than a human's, the dogs are trained to detect and identify both explosive material and  hostile or hiding humans.
The dogs are twice as fast as a fit human, so anyone trying to escape is not likely to outrun Cairo or his buddies.
Untitled 1765
The dogs, equipped with video cameras, also enter certain danger zones first, allowing their handlers to see what's ahead before humans follow.
As I mentioned before, SEAL dogs are even trained parachutists, jumping either in tandem with their handlers or solo, if the jump is into water.
Last year canine parachute instructor Mike Forsythe and his dog Cara  set the world record for highest man-dog parachute deployment, jumping from more than 30,100 feet up - the altitude transoceanic passenger jets fly at. Both Forsythe and Cara were wearing oxygen masks and skin protectors for the jump.
Here's a photo from that jump, taken by Andy Anderson for K9 Storm Inc. (more about those folks shortly).
Untitled 1766
As well, the dogs are faithful, fearless and ferocious - incredibly frightening and efficient attackers.
I have seen it reported repeatedly that the teeth of SEAL war dogs are replaced with titanium implants that are stronger, sharper and scare-your-pants-off  intimidating, but a U.S. Military spokesman has denied that charge, so I really don't know (never having seen a canine SEAL face-to-face). I do know that I've never seen a photo of a war dog with anything even vaguely resembling a set of shiny metal chompers.
When the SEAL DevGru team (usually known by its old designation, Team 6) hit bin Laden's Pakistan compound on May 2, Cairo's feet would have been four of the first on the ground.
And like the human SEALs, Cairo was wearing super-strong, flexible body Armour and outfitted with high-tech equipment that included "doggles" - specially designed and fitted dog googles with night-vision and infrared capability that would even allow Cairo to see human heat forms through concrete walls.
Now where on earth would anyone get that kind of incredibly niche hi-tech doggie gear?
From Winnipeg, of all places.
Jim and Glori Slater's Manitoba hi-tech mom-and-pop business, K9 Storm Inc., has a deserved worldwide  reputation for designing and manufacturing probably the best body Armour available for police and military dogs. Working dogs in 15 countries around the world are currently protected by their K9 Storm body Armour.
Untitled 1784
Jim Slater was a canine handler on the Winnipeg Police Force when he crafted a Kevlar protective jacket for his own dog, Olaf, in the mid-1990s. Soon Slater was making body Armour for other cop dogs, then the Canadian military and soon the world.
The standard K9 Storm vest also has a load-bearing harness system that makes it ideal for tandem rappelling and parachuting.

And then there are the special hi-tech add-ons that made the K9 Storm especially appealing to the U.S. Navy SEALs, who bought four of  K9 Storm Inc.'s top-end Intruder "canine tactical assault suits" last year for $86,000. You can be sure Cairo was wearing one of those four suits when he jumped into bin Laden's lair.
Here's an explanation of all the K9 Storm Intruder special features:
Untitled 1786
Just as the Navy SEALS and other elite special forces are the sharp point of the American military machine, so too are their dogs at the top of a canine military heirarchy.
In all, the U.S. military currently has about 2,800 active-duty dogs deployed around the world, with roughly 600 now in Afghanistan and Iraq.
Here's the link to a dandy photo essay about U.S. war dogs that just appeared in the journal Foreign Policy.
Several of the photos I have included here are from Foreign Policy, as you will see. Other photos are from K9 Storm Inc.
Untitled 1787
Untitled 1788
As for the ethics of sending dogs to war, that's pretty much a moot point, don't you think? If it's ethical to send humans into combat, then why not dogs?
At least the U.S. now treats its war dogs as full members of the military. At the end of the Vietnam War, the U.S. combat dogs there were designated as "surplus military equipment" and left behind when American forces pulled out.

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Sunday, July 10, 2011


Sinéad O'Connor Update and Quote

I guess I haven't been keeping up with everything.  I've always enjoyed Sinéad's music (except the showtunes album), and what I've heard "recently," but then again, the last six years I haven't had money or time for new music. Now seeing some news from a recent article, and the article linked above, I guess I haven't been keeping up much with what was going on in the life of my college idol/crush.  If memory serves, the poster I had on the ceiling of my bedroom junior year looked something like the pic at right.

 Huh, times have changed.  

Nowadays, I give support to people with depression and mental illness, and dealing with a Hx of parental abuse, during the course of a regular day.

Below is a quote from her that shines like a quasar for me.  Along with this 1994 quote "There is no too far," from Lee Renaldo, I will carry this quote from her with me forevermore:

 I realised songs were a place where you could say anything at all, the stuff you wouldn't dream of saying in real life.

I will always love Sinéad. Not just for that quote.  Not just for the music.  Not just for her beautiful bald head in times past.  Simply for her being.

lyrics: I will rise, and I will return. 
colors: Rainbow 
mood: A tad depressed 
chant/prayer/mantra: "--" 

pax hominibus, 
agape to all, 

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Re: The final push in Oakland

Dear Mary Jane,

I imagine this Janice Hahn may be a good candidate, however
I will not be helping Organizing for America now or in 2012.

I am entirely disenfranchised with the right/centrist agenda Barack Obama has been pursuing.  His policies have amounted to making "Change We Can Believe In" the saddest hollow promise I've ever heard in my 42 years.

Specifically, his budgetary policies continue to serve the wealthy corporate investors in a fashion similar to George W Bush including offering to trade away social security; he is continuing to invest our military in wars upon wars rather than pursue more peaceable solutions; his administration
flip-flops on the drug war, muddying the legal waters while continuing to harass moral and innocent people in medical need, using taxpayer dollars as if they are criminals; and he has done astonishingly little to support renewable energy, compared to subsidies for fossil fuels and nuclear. 

Therefore, his name attached to your request does not inspire me to help you unless he truly becomes "The Change I Thought I Was Believing In."  Please send him this message--I voted for him in 2008, but he and any Democratic candidates he supports have squandered my good faith, and lost my support for 2012.

With peace and real hope,

"You never change things by fighting the existing reality.
To change something, build a new model that makes
the existing model obsolete."
 -Buckminster Fuller (Architect and Geometrist)

On 9 July 2011 15:09, Mary Jane Stevenson, <> wrote:

Vote for Disappointment
Joel --

For the past several weeks, OFA California volunteers have been making calls and knocking on doors to help send Janice Hahn to Congress. And all of that work comes down to this, the final three days.

On Monday and Tuesday, it's all about getting out the vote. Will you join us in Oakland to help with the final push?

Here are the details:

What: Get out the vote for Janice Hahn

Where: 1714 Telegraph Avenue
Oakland, CA 94612

When: Tuesday, July 12th
10:00 am

RSVP now

Janice is the Democratic nominee in the 36th Congressional District's special election. She'll fight to create good jobs, support clean energy, and protect Medicare -- but only if we do our part to help her win.

RSVP to help out in Oakland on Tuesday:


Mary Jane

Mary Jane Stevenson
California State Director
Organizing for America

Paid for by Obama for America
This email was sent

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