Anti-Zionism isn't Anti-semitism

Israel Attacks Gaza Aid Fleet read the headlines around the world this morning. Another crinimal act by Isreal. The blockade itself is a crinimal act. Their settlements, their occupation, their 'secret' nuclear weapons, all against international laws. Isreal only gets away with this because the US, Canada, and the EU backs them, especially the US with its huge military muscle and aid.

For instance, on Thursday Amnesty International accused the US and European states of obstructing justice by using their position on the UN Security Council to shield Israel from accountability for war crimes committed in Gaza. As long as the American, Canadian and European governments continue to allow Israel to flout international law without consequence,. Israel will continue.

Isreal is ruled by the religious fanatics of the settlers movement. They, like all good fundmentalists, believe in the literal truth of their 'book', the Torah. Religious fanatics are by far the worst political danger the world faces. There no difference which 'book' they believe contains their god's own words, it's the unchallengeale, incontriverible nature of the mindset that creates the danger we now face.

The Christian fanatics back Zionist fanatics because their 'book' says that's the road to heaven, to Rapture. But our attention is constantly being diverted by the semantic trick whereby we equate Zionism with Judaism. They are two totally different things, the media has mis-educated the western world by using the terms interchangably. Judaism is a religion, a buncha hocus-pocus, like the rest of 'em, designed to placate fear of death and thereby exercise power and control. Zionism is a different animal. Zionists are racist bigots who believe their god chose them, 'the chosen people', and gave them title to and control of a huge area of the Middle East. The Zionists, like all fundamentalists, believe they and only they hear the true word of god whispering in their ear. But its the same voice every religious fanatic hears, it's their own inner voice telling them another self serving lie that trys to justify another unjustifable act. Anti-Zionism isn't Anti-Semitism


Empathy for James Carville and Mary Matalin

These last few days CNN and others have carried heartfelt, impassioned pleas from James Carville and Mary Matalin for the government to step up and take over the huge disaster in the Gulf of Mexico. i especially liked Carville's comment today that it's the government's, the Obama administration's, job it is to defend the US's territory from ecological disaster not BP's. James and Mary are watching the things they love die, they are honest witnesses to a fundamental weakness in a structure that allows corporations to serve only shareholder profits, to have no social responsibility and that allows governments to so easily become corrupted by corporate money.

BP's executives have one and only one goal, the corporate adgenda, maximizing profits for their shareholders. BP, like all corporations, is mandated by law to never put aside one penny it could be paying out to shareholders, to never pay a cost it can avoid, to never take an action that will cause stock prices [and thereby the net worth of her shareholders] to drop. It's BP's job to minimize/lie about the flow rates, about their chances of succss with each attempt at a solution. BP has insurance, just like in the case of Katrina victims, the insurance companies will go bankrupt long before any cleanup can happen. BP will walk away and hand the libility to their insurance agents, after they go tits up the government will be left holding the bag. Oh well guess they can always borrow another trillion from the Chinese.

James and Mary have stirred up emotions, stirred up the pot, and good on 'em or it. Somebody needs to be a voice of the food chain, the real wealth of a sustainble fishery, the ecology of land and sea. But what if James and Mary started to rain on the parade of causes that led us here. What if James broadsides and Mary's tears were aimed at the corporate control of their own regulators, the government's bypassing its own enviromental laws to grease the wheels of our present disaster. Or the general question of corporate rights and the rights of the commons.

The commons, that's us, all of us, "we're all in this together" as Red Green says each week. To me it looks obvious, this horrendous disaster in the Gulf will lead, like Santa Barbara once did, to a huge awakening, a population wide upheaval against the corporate state. A new paradigm of anti-consumerism, of small local organic agriculture, of appropriate technology, of wanting less.

But i've been wrong before.


Gardens are Growing

City folks are doing it, suburban folks are too, rural folks often have all along. Garden stores can't keep up with the pace of increased demand for seeds, plants and all the other stuff it takes to start and maintain a garden. i've been reading about the huge growth in urban food gardens especially roof top and city co-op allotments. Apparently there are always more applications than openings. In places devasted by the recession like Detroit urban gardens are everywhere.

This last week i've been buying little starter plants for my tiny garden. one real favorite is cherry tomatoes, they did very well here last year so i'm looking for them again. Cherry tomatoes aren't exactly exotic, they've been everywhere every year for years. But this year i learned by asking locally at the garden stores everything they bring in gets sold immediately, especially well known stuff like cherry tomatoes. Apparently my best chance of success was gonna be friday [yesterday] as a big truck load of mixed starters was coming from the wholesale greenhouse growers friday mid-morning. i got there just before noon, the parking lot was a madhouse, they had two cash registers going full tilt.They had lottsa stuff but no cherry tomaoes, the lady in charge said they were sold out at the supplier.

Today i visited the competition, sure enough i found 2 spindly cherry tomato plants hidden among a group of expensive heritage types [took one of them too]. i also got a couple of sweet grape tomato starters and now my two big planters are full, tomatoes up the trellises and romaine lettuce in fronts.

As i checked out with my babies i asked the lady running the show about my cherry tomato problem, she says it's not just them it's everything. People, maybe scared by the recession, maybe bouyed by hopes of better safety and higher quality food, who knows, but nobody can keep up. Among those in the know, the garden supply centers, Gardens are Growing.


A salute to cousin Drilling Mud

It's been a big few days in the news for 'mud'. The lowly mud usually only makes the mainstream when it's sliding down on some chic homes, but this time it's mud to the rescue. This special type of mud, and aren't we all, is very dense, way heavier than oil, twice as heavy as water, this mud sinks. Our hero is being pumped into the battle zone at a pressure higher than the geologic pressure behind the oil and under orders to sink. Mud stands on the front lines between the innocent forces of geology and the techno-mad primate species.

The birds, fish, shrimp, oysters, turtles, dolphins, and billions of others are rooting for the mud. Their lives, the lives of their offspring, the future of their habitat lies under great pressure, a mile below the surface, in the hands of our cousin Drilling Mud.

Be strong fair mud, you have the good vibes of billions behind you.


Coke and his Shower Posse

Experts: Accused Jamaican drug lord akin to Robin Hood.
Jamaicans, don't know, if he's extradited, who will be there for them. There are mothers wondering, 'Who's going to buy my child lunch?' or 'If I get sick, who's going to pay my hospital bills?'. Coke and his gang hand out sandwiches in the streets, send children to school, build medical and community centers. Coke and his Shower Posse have thousands of everyday people willing to support him because in these guys are the heroes of Kingston's slum version of Sherwood Forest.

The US demand for illegal recreational drugs has created a giant sucking sound, it's the sound of huge chunks of money changing hands at very high speed. Jamaicans, many of whom live in abject poverty in Kingston, have few options in their universal quest to provide a better future for their children, Christopher "Dudus" Coke gives them an avenue to hope.

On both sides, Jamaican or US, all sides everywhere, the insanity of the inequity in wealth distribution provides the energy to turn the turbines of the War on Drugs and the gangs. Our culture's denial of the health model of drug use and abuse has, like the prohibition of booze, created the perfect profit picture for organized crime to take over.

Humans have used drugs since before the begining of written history, before the first farm, before the first best friend slept by our fire. All the laws enacted by successive modern governments to appease the more anal religious factions deny the basic human desire to get high.

"The prestige of government has undoubtedly been lowered considerably by
the Prohibition law, for nothing is more destructive of respect for the
government and the law of the land than passing laws which cannot be enforced."
-Albert Einstein 1921


Dropout of the Corporate Agenda

Globalization was the logical next step in the corporate agenda, an agenda whose goal is the extraction of resources and short term profits. It's in the best interests of the corporate agenda that local rules be eliminated and environmental concerns sidestepped. Driven by quarterly profit-oriented thinking, there must always be more...more of everything for the empire to consume. More every second as the currency and market speculators work around the globe and the clock.

The richest 5% already control's 90% of the world's resources. The rich and their bankers can't possibly expect to continue growing by only consuming what's already here. Instead they must increasingly rely on the extraction of resources and their consumption for the generation of 'new wealth', this is the corporate agenda. Borders, and the laws enacted within them, have become meaningless compared to the greed of the privileged few.

Each empire follows the same trajectory, wether ruled ruled by kings or emperors, pharaohs or czars, once the empire has consumed the natural resources in its own backyard it must funnel the resources from outlying areas back to their centers. The earthquakes and aftershocks caused by these huge resource imbalances are what we call today's news. These historic imbalances, created and maintained by military force for centuries, are now being magnified by the power of global corporations.

For millennia the opposing forces of greed have been kept each other in check somewhat. As soon as any empire got so big it started to consume more than its technology could supply it collapsed, or was taken over. Today it's the same story, corporate greed has consumed what was easily available and needs new supplies. This time the corporate empire is everywhere and nowhere at once, it's an idea, not a place.

So the opposition to the corporate agenda must be everywhere and nowhere too, it must be an idea this time that holds the forces of greed in check not a peasant army. The empire's opposition this time must be composed of thousands of seemingly unconnected cells acting independently. Both sides in this titanic struggle for our future are connected by ideas not geography as in the past.

Hopefully in unleashing themselves from the fetters of international boundaries the corporations have seeded the field of their own defeat. In the past, the vast majority of people have been easily divided by borders and patriotism, divided they have been easily ruled by the rich few. Every day though more people see our present circumstances, globally as well as locally, for what they are and always has been, have vs. have not, rich vs. poor, class warfare plain and simple.

Stopping conspicious consumption, genuinely wanting and being happy with less, growing and making our own, these are the ideas and actions that will hobble the runaway corporate agenda. "Turn on, Tune in, Drop out" - Timothy Leary, is still great advice.


Panic In Northern California

Plummeting Marijuana Prices Create A Panic In Calif. - For decades, illegal marijuana cultivation has been an economic lifeblood for three counties in northern California known as the Emerald Triangle.

i have friends there, i've visited up in the hills of Humbolt Co. a couple times, interesting times there right now for sure. 'Legalize It' is a two edged sword, mostly the folks who get hurt are growing more than needed to 'get by and get high', those guys are looking for 'get rich quick'. the former an outlaw, the latter a criminal. The small time growers most often has an individual market among old friends, far flung or nearby, for their small output. The criminal types have to make big deals to make big dough, they are far more threatened by big competition.

Keeping things small is the answer for all free market things, pot included. Lots of people are small, mom and pop, outlaw type pot growers. Of the few who go for the big bucks, most fail, there's lottsa hard work, organization, capital and tight lips required to be successfull.

The only information the mainstream media talks about is the criminal type, their stories are about warehouses full, it makes better pictures, huge border busts, helocopter deliveries, guns, gangs, all great TV. In reality most weed gets grown in small timers' basements and greenhouses, most weed gets sold and traded locally in small amounts between normal folks. It's not just 3 counties in N.Calif., throughout the pacific northwest US weed is a player in small town economies. Everybody down there is watching to see the referendum outcome in early Nov.

Calif. often leads the way towards social change across N. America and we here in BC follow some years later. Hopefully some of this could slosh up over the 49th and return Canada's marijuana laws toward sanity again.


Chris Hedges - Radical

Today's article 'The Greeks Get It' at TruthDig.com is the next step in Hedges radical evolution. He starts off, "Here's to the Greeks. They know what to do when corporations pillage and loot their country." He goes on to nicely outline why there are riots and flames in the streets of Greece. Then he goes into how and why western capitialism is killing the planet. How corrupt the system is, how ineffectual the Progressive movement is, how unfettered the truely radical solutions we need are.

Before and after reading Empire of Illusions i've noticed Hedges articles becoming more radical each time. Hedges closes 'The Greeks Get It' by saying "the Radical goes along the road pointed out by his own individual conscience; if History is going his way, too, he is pleased; but he is quite stubborn about following ‘what ought to be' rather than ‘what is.' "

Hedges' turn toward the inevitability and even disireability of economic collapse has been admirable. i suggest that his articles further turn toward a personal ethic of wanting less, toward a regognition that the concept of dominion is our culture's greatest illusion and toward a worldview where all forms are merged and all life is scared.

" Politics is how you live your life, not whom you vote for!" -Jerry Rubin


Holly was a very good kitty

Holly passed away this morning while being petted and loved by me. Holly was 15 years old and had lived a full life. She was our friend and we loved her as she loved us. We'll miss her always.

Holly came to live with us as a baby kitten just 8 weeks old. About a week later another kitten named Beth moved in as well. The two kittens played, romped and tore around inside and out of our big old rambling farmhouse. We'd lost our last cat durng the preceeding winter, prey no doubt to one of the bigger predators who live all around us here. We needed Holly and Beth, they were our partners on our little farm as much as they were our friends and companions. When you live in on a little farm in the country mice-moles-schrews live everywhere around you. It's only natural they try to move into your warm dry house especially as winter comes on and your woodstove makes everything homey for all.

Holly and Beth each had a litter of babies on almost exactly their first birthday. Holly was an exceptional mom to all of the kittens. She looked after hers as well as Beth's. Holly carried the kittens back to the spare bedroom the mothers adopted as a nursery every time they came out to sniff at and crawl over our dog Happy. She nursed them all, bathed them all, took them outside and taught them to hunt once they were big enough. There was a hawk's nest at the edge of the forest and the hawk parents would swoop down trying to catch the kittens. Holly would leap up and intercept the diving hawks flashing her own deadly claws. The mid-air battles were incredible. Holly protected her babies. Holly was a great mom to her kittens.

For the first 13 of Holly's 15 years as our partner we all lived on a small farm. She had her best friend Beth who died about 5 years ago. She lived shoulder to shoulder with Happy a black lab cross and our best friend. She lived with 3 llamas, countless generations of chickens, goats and her people. Holly outlived all of them except her people. She was exceptionally healthy all of her life never once being sick or injured. Every morning Holly came to greet me as i got up and rushed to take a pee. She'd rub herself on my legs as i stood at the toilet. She purred and snuggled on my chest as i watched TV during our 'petting time' in the evenings. Holly followed us and the dogs on short walks through the trails near our home. Holly was a good kitty.

Holly died early this morning in my arms, we loved her, she loved us.


Beans, more than just a musical fruit

It's time, May 24-25 the best, to plant corn, beans, peppers, squash and other above ground crops. i've looked foward to it for a while. Don't have much room but each year it expands a little. Now there's a trellis for some mixed pole beans and sweet peas with enough room for a couple of squashes and a few token corn plants at the ends.

Beans, all legumes, gather nitrogen out of the air and make it available to other plants growing nearby through their intermingled roots. So planting nitrogen producing beans with hungry corn plants has happened for thousands of years. Hopefully in July and August we'll have lottsa fresh beans for eating, then come fall i'll take the best mature bean pods off the stalks and lay them out on a screen to dry. Next spring they’ll be re-planted as both an edible crop and nitrogen fixer for its neighbors. Harvesting often implies an ending, not in the garden, not for beans, it's back to the begining, not the end.

Beans are more than just a musical fruit, they are hugely nutrious, nitrogen fixers, easily saved for replanting, very productive in a small space due to vertical growth. Beans, be there or be square!

Saving older seed varieties may avert global disaster

Seeds of Diversity


The Fruits of Our Common Ground

The Tea Party movement has flexed it's old, white, mostly male,  muscles in the Republican Primaries recently. Of special news-worthy-ness is the Republican nomimation in Kentucky of the trilobite Rand Paul. Rand has a hard time with questions like "Should restaurants be allowed to refuse service to black people?" Or, "Do you expect to be wisked away in the Rapture?" etc.

Most surprising though is that there are some issues many folks from all political stripes agree with them on. The biggest is the bailouts of the billionaire's banks and bankers. Followed a close second by the huge bonuses these 'masters of the universe' have paid themselves before-during-since the meltdown and bailout they themselves created by racheting up their self-centered greed machine with their derivitives schemes.

i've always hoped for a populist uprising but i never thought it's be the ultra right wing christian coalition types that'd be spearheading it. Pro-guns, anti-gays, pro-war, anti-abortion, pro-white, anti-immigrant...both are long lists and i'm probably 100% in disagreement with every one of their positions, yet i still have to give them credit for having the gumption to get out there and flaunt their ignorant racist reality in the full light of day instead of behind the cover of darkness covered in a sheet, while lynching some innocent black guy, like in the old days.

The silver lining may be that this further tilting of the political balance toward the right-wing nuts maybe-could-might give the left enough of a kick in the ass to actually put down their lattes and actually do something. The left in North America has been sold out by its liberal parties and elected representatives. Whether in Canada or the US the corporations buy the votes they need from both sides, our governments are totally corrupted by the corporate state. The surprising thing is that it's The Tea Party that represents wholesale change. i'm hoping it's a pendulum kinda thing and that once the rightwing crazies have had their turn rototilling the political mind-field it'll be time for the pendulum to swing hard left, not Obomber-Ignatieff liberal left, but idealist left and that the newly tilled garden will be ready for the planting of new ideas, the growing of a unfied worldview, and the harvesting of the fruits of our common ground.


The Boreal Forest is Alive

Canadian Boreal Forest Agreement has started to draw fire from greaasroots enviromental groups and especially first nations groups who feel they have been totally left out of the agreement. Some others feeling left out are the birds-bees-microbes-trees and their cousins. The huge clearcuts that a few days ago were a rape of the forest are now supported by the mainstream enviromental bigshots.

The Boreal Forest is said to be an irreplaceable part of the lungs of the earth. The forest includes a of mydrid species of flora and fauna above ground and a far larger cast of millions below ground. The living forest recycles our air and sequesters our carbon-dioxide. It's an intertwinned living unit, it's not fiber as the industrialists would have us say. Words matter, a forest lives, huge clearcuts replanted with GM clones, tended with herbicides, fed with petrochemicals doesn't.

The mainstream enviromental groups have agreed to a 3 year deal, so it's very temporary, during which time over 90% of the forest will be continue to be clearcut, killed, raped as before but now with no well funded opposition critics. While over 90% of the forest is under assualt the remaining less than 10% that is being 'set aside' will have it's future assessed and re-assessed as to it's future productivity. So the deal is short term, subject to change whenever the corporations want and the natives groups are opposed the destruction of the great forest, any and all of it, me too.

The Forest Cariboo are a part the unbroken whole of the forest. They don't just live in the tiny unconnected enclaves granted them by the corporate/enviro boondoggle, the cariboo are connected to the ecosphere as we all are. The cariboo will only be saved when the whales are saved, and the bugs, the slugs and the fungus are saved. They'll only be saved if 'we the consumers' have compassion for all of our interconnected, interdependent lives. i greive for the 100% of the forest that the industrialists will now turn to fiber without critisism.

Boreal Forest Conflicts Far From Over
Support Grassy Narrows


Rapacious Logging in the Boreal Forest

The Canadian Boreal Forest Agreement (CBFA) brings together FPAC's 21 member companies and nine environment groups, many of which have fought a bitter battle for many years against what they have sometimes criticised as rapacious logging. As part of the new deal, environmental groups including Greenpeace, ForestEthics, and Canopy have agreed to suspend their “Do Not Buy”, to suspend criticism of the industry and other boycott campaigns aimed at the forestry companies.

Once again the enviromental movements 'heavy hitters' are being co-opted by corporate and banking interests. Industry serves one master, profits for its shareholders, no other god may come before it, certainly not the bloddy cariboo. Industry will trot their new greenie weenies out at the first smell of protest by other, non-aquiesent protestors. As part of the agreement those now co-opted 9, heavy hitter, enviro groups have agreed to suspend criticism of the industry and calls for boycotts. Suspend criticism of the industry, wow, a few days ago the forest industry practiced rapacious logging, now no criticism allowed

The Enviromental movement has, in many areas lately, been blasted for compromising their ideals in exchange for some wigglely promises that soon unravel in a cascade of lawyers and accountants, here we go again. Industry managers want fiber for their mills, sales managers want a green paint job, the P.R. room spins jobs into every interview. It takes about 1/10 the jobs now than it used to, machines replaced the loggers, shutdown the inappropriate technology and there'd be lottsa jobs back in forestry quick.

The 'heavy hitter' enviro groups have lost touch with their ideals, to get onboard with the institution who's goal it is to convert all the riches of the earth into dollars, to agree to shut up, sounds less than ideal to me.


The Dark Mountain Project

There are perhaps many routes to the sustainable economy humans must arrive at very soon. We might all become better people, we might all learn quickly to want less, the rich might use their wealth to feed the hungry and grind their swords into plowshears. But those seem highly improbable given humanity's prediliction for material comfort and the power necessary to allow the consumption of the world by the few at the cost to so many.

More and more progressive thinkers are coming to understand that the only realistic path to a sustainable world is the collapse of the existing economic world order. The Dark Mountain Project understands the problems we as working class individuals and families all face and seeks to speak to the great dilemma of our time. We can't consume our way out of overconsumption. The future for our children will be far different from our lives this past century. The new world order, the end of an economic order powered by the consumption of resources stored away by geologic forces over millions of years, may look dark and bleak but The Dark Mountain Project seeks to teach a new ethic for these new times, a new way to see, a new way to live through the ongoing changes that surround us.

Dark Mountain: The Project
These are precarious and unprecedented times. Our economies crumble, while beyond the chaos of markets, the ecological foundations of our way of living near collapse. Little that we have taken for granted is likely to come through this century intact.

We don’t believe that anyone – not politicians, not economists, not environmentalists, not writers – is really facing up to the scale of this. As a society, we are all still hooked on a vision of the future as an upgraded version of the present. Somehow, technology or political agreements or ethical shopping or mass protest are meant to save our civilisation from self-destruction.

Well, we don’t buy it. This project starts with our sense that civilisation as we have known it is coming to an end; brought down by a rapidly changing climate, a cancerous economic system and the ongoing mass destruction of the non-human world. But it is driven by our belief that this age of collapse – which is already beginning – could also offer a new start, if we are careful in our choices.
The end of the world as we know it is not the end of the world full stop.

Deeper than oil, steel or bullets, a civilisation is built on stories: on the myths that shape it and the tales told of its origins and destiny. We have herded ourselves to the edge of a precipice with the stories we have told ourselves about who we are: the stories of ‘progress’, of the conquest of ‘nature’, of the centrality and supremacy of the human species.

It is time for new stories. The Dark Mountain Project intends to conjure into being new ways of seeing and writing about the world. We call this Uncivilisation.

Our aim is to bring together writers and artists, thinkers and doers, to assault the established citadels of literature and thought, and to begin to redraw the maps by which we navigate the places and times in which we find ourselves.
 - from The Dark Mountain Project website.


Roberto and Mazatlan

The last 4 nights in Mazatlan i spent at the 'Mexican hotel', it was clean-ish, had a shower and cost very little. The evening Spanish-English lessons went on after 'Happy Hour' at the bar but turned often onto other topics like his family or how i was missing my daughter, i'd never been away from her for a month before, we talked on the phone a few times during the adventure but...compared to Roberto who was away for almost a month every month from Nov. 'til May through the winter tourist season my whining was foolish. i couldn't imagine how tough this guy was inside.

Most days i'd take a bus out from the beach area an then walk through a different part of the city from morning 'til mid afternoon. A couple of days i walked the beach for miles. i'd shower then head for the bar where i'd run a tab for food and beer through the evening. At the end i'd get a bill that was only a fraction of what it should have been. i paid the bill then tipped the waiter-bartender-busboy as much as i could. We never talked about the bills outload but this was undoubtedly more help from Roberto. He did say a couple times that everybody working at the bar-restaurante lived by eating the kitchen's leftovers and that the cooks made lots of extra for everybody.

Mexicana Airlines sure was great to me, they had handy little in-town offices and changed things around for me a few times including here. On one of my walks i went by a Supermarcado, a Mexican department store and bought a doll, doll clothes and a baseball for Roberto's kids. He left late the day before i did. i forced him to take all the rest of my Mexican and some of the US money i had left for his family. Roberto was 30, i was too.

i left the hotel real early the next morning. This time i was taking the metro bus to the aeropuerto cause i was almost broke. Flying from Mazatlan through LAX, then on to Vancouver, through customs, through the city, catching and riding the ferry takes a huge day. During the the trip there was plenty of time to look back. i'd been gone a month though it seemed far longer. i'd learned some things about the inequality on life in Mexico, about the beauty, beaches, food, people, cities and little towns there. i learned flying didn't get me to the little places i'd liked the most. i learned i wanted to drive next time.

i went through Mazatlan 3-4 more times on different road trips in the coming decades. i always searched for Roberto but without success. i've always hoped that he earned-saved enough money to move back to the farm and his extended family, that all was well for him. But that's just my fantasy-hollywood ending and there aren't now and wasn't then very many happy endings  for the poverty stricken majority in 'ol Mexico.


Monte Alban - Oaxaca - Mazatlan

Monte Alban sits at the top of a mountain in the center of Oaxaca Valley. The bus ride itself was great. i'd especially paid attention to the exihibts about Monte Alban at the Museum of Anthropology knowing i was going there. Monte Alban is powerful, this slideshow of the place is very good. The hotel packed me a lunch as part of the tour deal. We spent the morning with the tour guide, then after lunch it was open exploring with a book as guide.
Cilivizations built on top of the older conquered ones, it's remarkable, beyond words.

Mexicana had a flight from Oaxaca stoping in Mexico City, Guadalara and Mazatlan, i had a ticket for the next day from the in little office downtown. Another tip from the hotel desk. That evening i went to the zocalo cafes and walked around looking at art, especially the indian weavers who displayed stuff around the walkway in the evenings. i only had an already 100% full packpack a quickly thinning wallet, but i found a small one made from local wool, hand made dyes, it's still hangs in the doorway here at the hideout.

It wouldn't be fair to say Oaxaca was all perfect back then. i do remember in that in Puerto Escondido and in Oaxaca City there were always scary looking army guys on patrol, sometimes in jeeps or small troop carriers zooming through the streets or just lurking around generally. it was peaceful there, sorta, in a controlled kinda way, but you could feel the underlying stress that would erupt sooner or later, it has since then, and will again, until the inequities imposed on the indios by the minority Spanish landbarons, bankers, and army muscle are eliminated.

Fortunately, i just stayed on the air conditioned plane drinking beer for hours. i again hit the tarmac in Mazatlan, felt the day's heat and almost fell over. Had the cab leave me off at the same old place, only planned to stay a couple nights but it turned out longer. Met up with Roberto that very night at the palapa beach bar-restaurante where he worked.

Money governed the length of time i had left on the trip. The hotel cost the most, food and beer second, Roberto had a few good ideas. First i moved into the same hotel he lived in, only a few blocks inland from the tourist zone but still a different world. Almost everybody living there, including Roberto, came from the large family farms in countryside. They worked 7 days a week [even Sunday] saving every tourist dollar they could then returning home maybe once a month to see their wives, kids, grandparents, brothers, sisters etc., who all lived there. Roberto, and most all of them, were the only source of hard currency the families back home had. Roberto was going home on the weekend 6 days after i got back, he was excited already.

mas manana...buenos noches.


To and From Puerto Escondido

The flight to Puerto Escondido on Aerolineas Oaxacinas made the cab ride into Mexico City seem tame by comparison. There were only 6-7 other passengers on board as we sat on the runway waiting for the pilot to show up. There were also a lotta crates and boxes piled in many of the unsed seats. Finally he strode over to the plane. Wearing a long white silk scarf, mirrored sunglasses and smoking a cigar he looked right out of Hollywood. We taxied to the far end of the strip and he gunned the engines full throttle while holding the brakes on. It seemed like every rivet in the plane was dancing. Finally he let her go and up we climbed headed straight for a notch in the mountains that surround the city. The closer we got more it looked like we'd never make it, i expected him to turn and circle to gain altitude but that wasn't his style. i was totally sure we were going to crash, the tree tops were right in front of us, my stomach was churning, every pore sweating as we cleared a narrow crotch in the trees by what seemed like inches.

Dios meo, we'd made it. But that wasn't the worst of it. About an hour into our 90 minute flight, high over the mountains, we started into a hard left turn. i was on that side so i could see he tiny village perched on the mountside below. There was an a short runway cut into the hillside, the far end butting the mountain, the near end starting at the cliff's edge. Sure enough we were landing there. The plane skidded to a stop a few feet from the mountain side, turned and stopped. The pilot climbed out and i got out right behind him. i figured, like a guy in front of a fring squad, i'd be allowed one last smoke. i watched as the indios from the tiny village unloaded the boxes from the cabin and anther buncha stuff from the storage bays underneath [guess all that weight was paryta why we barely made it outta Oaxaca valley. It took them a while to unload so i walked down the runway and looked over the edge, musta en a thousand feet straight down. We got back in and again he opened her up with the brakes on. Off we went hurtling down the short gravel runway towards the cliff. We had no where near enough speed to get airborne as the tires cleared the edge. We dropped like a rock, gaining speed like one too. Finally he started to pull 'er nose up and we leveled out just over the valley floor, i almost puked.
We landed in Puerto Escondido about 10 minutes later. i could barely walk i was so scared, but i grabbed my bag and got out certain i'd never get back on. All of us crammed into a VW bus for the ride into town. i learned from the driver that we'd been on the once a week supply run to the mountain village and that the flight back would be way more normal.

i checked into a funky little beach front joint and headed for the beach, it was late afternoon and i've never seen a perfect sunset. i spent the early part of each day the next week walking the beaches, body surfing to cool off, then having lunch and hiding out under the palm trees during mid-day. A couple of evenings i walked into town by mostly i hung out in the palapa bar-restaurants enjoying the food and drink. Puerto Escondido was an undiscovered surfers paradise back then, sleepy dirt roads, excellant fesh seafood, and a great panadaria. Things have changed, the bay is circled with many highrise hotels, everything costs a fortune, sure glad i got there back then [apparently Puerto Angel, a couple hours south, hasn't changed much though so...].

The days rushed by and way to soon i was back in the old VW bus heading for my return flight to Oaxaca City and scared shitless. As predicted the return flight was uneventful and the pilot circled the valley a couple times to let us all see the views.

That night i returned to the hotel as arranged before liftoff. The manager welcomed me like a long lost brother, maybe he was surprised i'd lived. i walked to the zocalo, had dinner then as watched the young unmarrieds circle in opposite directions checking each other out and giggling. Every group of young women had at least one chaperone waking with them, none of the boys or girls were allowed to talk to each other or even stop their circumambulation. Coming from the wild sex-drugs-rock-n-roll culture of Vancouver it was very strange yet neat to watch.

Returning to hotel fairly late the manager asked if i'd like to join a group going to Monte Alban the next morning. i'd learned some about it at the museum in Mexico City and jumped at the offer. i stumbled into my room full, drunk and happy but i had enough brains not to put out any underwear that night.

Tomorrow it's Monte Alban and the return to Mazatlan and me amigo Roberto.


Riding the Rails To Oaxaca

My second day in Mexico City was almost as good as my first. My main destination in 'ol Mexico was Oaxaca and the consierge at the Maria Christina, after asking me a few questions suggested i take the overnight train as he thought i'd enjoy it and the cost was very reasonable. He suggested that instead of spending hours lining up in the heat at the train station i let him make my reservations from the hotel and that i spend my day touring the Museums of Anthropology and History and walking through the parks. i said "si, si senoir". He pointed out where the hotel district's tour bus stopped and i rode to the incredible parks and museums. My hours there formed the itinery for every trip i took through Mexico in the coming years. If you ever get a chance to visit them go, it's the best, most educational hours you'll ever spend anywhere.

i walked back the few miles to the hotel along wide tree covered boulavards arriving back leg weary and ready for a long soak in my huge bathtub. The desk people handed me my train tickets on my way to dinner and drinks on the terrace. They asked me if i'd made arrangements for accomadations in Oaxaca, of course i hadn't, so they offered to do it for me and suggested another fantastic old hotel one block from the zocolo there. Of couse i said "por favor". That evening there was a band setup by the fountain and interesting people from all over the world all around me. i slept like a log barely hearing the bellboy with the coffee and paper the next morning. Fortunately the train didn't leave until late afternoon and the hotel's driver was lined but to bring me to the station. i lounged around, had lunch and a few cervesas on the terrace, handed out tips to everyone in sight and arrived at the station ticket in hand. The Maria Christina seems like a wonderful dream now, one i'll never forget.

The train ride was incredible, i traveled coach with laughing children, doting parents and refeshments brought onboard by local vendors at every stop. The clickety clack of the rails and the rocking train made sleep easy. The bathrooms consisted of a huge open hole over the tracks, not so bad for a man peeing but i sure wasn't trying anything else. Just before sunrise i made my way to the back of the caboose and sat watching the sunrise over the beautiful countryside. Again, if you ever get a chance don't miss the train to Oaxaca, you'll never forget it.

We departed the train in the late morning and i walked the short distance to the hotel. It too was exquisite though slightly less so than the Maria Christina. The front desk again knew who i was instantly, perhaps i stood out because of my 6' 5" 250lb long haired tie-dyed appearence compared to the suits and dresses all around me, perhaps to was my ear-to-ear smile. They handed me my key, offered to do any laundry i left outside my door overnight and suggested i dine at one of the restaurants overlooking the zocalo that evening as there'd be a band playing that evening. The food and the brass band were wonderful. Oaxaca is populated by a mixture of Zapotec Indios, Spanish decendents of the conquistadors and international vagabonds. The place is unique and these days is a center of the cultural revolution slowly sweeping north from the hills of Chiapas that will hopefully one day allow Mexico to become again the paradise it once was.

i awoke the next morning to a soft knock on the door. Opening it i stood face to navel with a very short Zapotec lady holding my stack of washed-dried-ironed-starched laundry. It took me a few days and a few hand washings before i walked normally again-one lesson i learned in Oaxaca-never starch your underwear. At the front desk i asked about transportation options to Puerto Escondido on the coast. They instantly warned me away from the buses saying "muy peligroso" [very dangerous] and reserved me a seat on that afternoon's local airline shuttle. i walked through town for hours eating my way through the colorful stalls around the mercado. The hotel had a driver who took me to the aeroporto and showed me to the loading area for Aerolineas Oaxacinas and the tiny airline's ancient DC-3.

The flight to the coast was another story...tomorrow's


The Maria Christina Hotel

I flew out of Vancouver excited to get away, excited to see Mexico and totally unprepared for everything i found there. In those days, 1978, booze flowed freely on Mexicana Airlines. Given the booze, the heat, the overwhelming aroma of flowering tropical flora, i was lucky i didn't fall down the rollup stairs getting off the plane. My plan was to check out Mazatlan for a couple days before heading on to Mexico City. i had learned a few words of Spanish and was very luck that almost everybody in the touristy city knew enough English for me to survive. i stayed those first few nights in a little old hotel next to the beach that the cab driver took me to from the airport, it was simple, old, perfect, and probably owned by a cousin of the cabby.

The next morning i was up real early and decieded a swim in the ocean would do my hangover wonders, it did. The day was spent walking the beach for miles in both directions. By Happy Hour the only part unsunburnt was the part i sat on at the bar. It was a palapa roofed outdoor beauty next to the beach. Again my luck was running as i met a neat young bartender named Roberto. Almost everybody else was there with a date or a friend so being single i got to meet way more of the locals everywhere on the trip. We chatted a bit and he asked me to help him with his English and i definately needed help with my Spanish. The next couple days after the Happy Hour rush we went at it. Of course his English was way better than my Spanish so i learned basic tourist survival stuff, he learned the latest gringo phrases. In Mexico back then the main way to earn decent money was tips from the tourists, the better your gringo slang the more tips you earned.

We got to be amigos, he told me where to go during the day on my walks, where the neat stuff was. He knew i was coming back through Mazatlan in a couple weeks on my way back home and we arranged to continue our sessions then.

Next came another Mexicana flight this time over the mountains and into the caldera of Mexico City. Huge culture shock, huge crowds, nobody spoke English, without Roberto's lessons i'd have never survived the airport let alone the city. i followed Roberto's advice and found a collectivo van marked Zona Rosa, the international area. Being the only single person in the little van i got a front seat view of the white knuckle drive into town. Again, nobody else spoke English so i figured i'd get out at one of the hotels somebody else asked to stop at. They were all huge highrises and obviously beyond my budget. The driver asked "donde" [where] which i misunderstood and answered "Americansi" so he left me off at the US Embassey a block or two away. Another huge stroke of luck.

Outside was a US Marine in full dress uniform who pleasantly directed me to the US citizens info. area despite my long hair and hippy atire. There, after a few questions and answers i was directed to an office where an embassey official took pity on me, because of my ignorance undoubtedly. He told me about this great and reasonable old hotel where they often put up visitors. He tried directing me there but as i knew nothing of the city he took it upon himself to call the hotel for me, reserve me a room and get the hotel to send around a car to pick me up. It was unbelievable, there i was a hippy draft dodger being picked up at the private back door of the US Embassey and chauffeured to an amazing colonial era hotel and treated like a king.

The fellow at the hotel desk knew exactly who i was and said that they were expecting me. A bellboy grabbed my old backpack and led me up an incredible curving staircase to my mini-suite overlooking the fountain in the courtyard. There were 10 ft high ceilings, arched doors and windows, and the most beautiful bathtub i've ever seen. Within minutes they brought me a dinner menu and translated it while asking if i wanted dinner in my room on the balcony or if i prefered the terrace by the fountain. i figured this was going to totally blow my meager budget so i went back down to the desk to ask the about the rate. Again, i was amazed to find out that the Embassey had a special deal with the Maria Christina and that i would be charged $20US a night including meals an unbelievable deal in Mexico City in any kinda place even in '78 let alone in this kinda the classy hotel.

i ate on the terrace, drank fancy drinks [all included] and went to sleep in my suite sure i'd be booted out come sunrise. But instead they showed up with coffee and the English version of the Mexico City daily newspaper at 9AM.

According to the guide books the rooms have been 'renovated', the outside has been stuccoed and painted pink but the main floor and gardens remain as i remember them. To quote Lonely Planet, Through a majestic stone archway, the spacious lobby is drenched in colonial splendor, with carved wood columns and beams, cast-iron chandeliers and azulejo tiles spiralling up the walls of the grand staircase. The colonial charm has been poured into the lobby lounge and adjacent gardens which lead onto a Sevilla-style patio with a faithful reproduction of a medieval fountain. The bar, in a separate building with its own patio seating, makes a terrific setting for a tequila, served cantina-style with a dish of peanuts alongside. Hummingbirds flit around the feeders that dangle from some lemon trees. Through the decades i've sent many friends who've gone to Mexico City to stay at the Maria Christina, they've all loved it.

More on Mexico City, the train to Oaxaca and Oaxaca itself manana.


Corporate War and Cannon Fodder

Fools. Humans can be such fools. War, every war, every where is fought to control resources. There are no 'good' wars. There never was, there never will be. War, as the song says, "is good for absolutely nothing". Yet humans buy into the propaganda, the fear mongering, with such fervor they'll send their sons and daughters to kill and be killed, to maim and be maimed in service to the profits of the war machine.

Fear of the other, fear of the unknown, is the crack in the human pschye that tyrants have always used as an insertion point for their lever. "We have nothing to fear but fear itself" Roosevelt said in an earlier, slightly more honest, moment of crisis.

We all stand now on the edge of the destruction of the thin ecosphere that sustains all life, yet we continue to consume faster and faster because we fear the abyss of unknowing. From the 'masters of the universe' on Wall St. to the oil barons of Alberta to...well, to everywhere, only one thing matters, more. More money, more power, more control, for them that is. The masters laugh at how easily 'we the sheeple' are led from mall to mall by advertisers pimping their plastic crap.

i, the hermit, hold these truths to be self-evident: we all breathe the same air, we are all mortal and we will never be whole until we learn to want less, until we learn to overcome the fear of the unkown, until we embrace the one life we all share.


Cliff Gilker Ladies

Yesterday was Mother's Day and on our walk through the forest and falls in Cliff Gilker Park we met two remarkable mothers. Both were almost 80, both were walking with their best friends, both taught me old lessons over again.

Pancho and i met one lady as we approached the bridge that was destroyed by a tree during the big wing storm about a month ago. Her golden retreiver was cavorting in the pool above the falls. We talked about our best friends and how much they mean to us and how our lives are enriched by the love we share with them. She told me that all of her human friends had questioned her sanity when at age 74 she got this new puppy and she'd likely be near 90 when its time was over and how if she were still able she'd get another dog again immediately. We've both had dogs and cats all our adult lives and agreed that, especially now that our children had left home, we'd chosen to live our lives in a way that many think is silly because of the limitations to travel or other stuff that our dogs create.

i started to laugh then i realized she was crying. She said that the mention of our children and Mother's Day had again started the flow. She told me that just two months ago she'd lost her son to cancer, he was only 50, and the tears came often and without control. They'd been very close she said and that through his long battle she'd raged and pleaded with the dark lord to take her instead. Her obvious good health and the love she shared with her best friend powered them on down the trail. As we parted we waved and smiled to each other as we now will always be connected by our meeting at the pool.

A few minutes later we met the second lady near another bridge and falls lower down beside the same creek. She walked slowly using a stick for balance. We too talked about our dogs but, unlike our earlier meeting, this time it was about their names. She was very bright and well spoken. Her friend was named Paladin and she told me about the Knights of Charlamagne and the mysteries of his court. Just before the bridge the trail quickly-steeply climbs a rock and root encrusted rise. For some reason i jumped up ahead then reached back to lend her a balancing hand up the little hill. She took my hand and i watched as her feet danced up the rocks. She felt so light, she smiled so bright, she thanked me and wished me well.

Oh how i miss my mother every day.


Bedeviling Beliefs

"Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it from a religious conviction" - Pascal

For centuries my European ancestors lived in a world where no thought that contradicted the church's dogma was allowed, where people were condemned to hell for looking in a mirror, and it was a death sentence for believing that the earth wasn't at the center of the universe. Every culture is vulnerable to being commandeered by a belief system. From the earliest cities uncovered in central Asia to the present day divinings of the bishops, rabbis and imams, human culture is driven by a need to answer the question of death.

Once any culture comes up with a story/mythology to answer that question everything has to fit into that jar. Here comes the important part, one of the grand illusions of our shared reality is that we think 'seeing is believing' but really it's the opposite. Once you really believe something to be true, every fact, every bit of evidence encountered will corroborate it. We see the world and everything in it through the filter our belief system. Beliefs come first, experience second. So, for example, OJ was obviously guilty through the lens of 95% of white America [the other 5% are most likely homeless, and poor and so too have had questionable experiences with the police]. Whereas the numbers were exactly the opposite for blacks and other people of color who see the racist attitudes of some cops first hand every day.

The elites figured out along time ago that real power lies in becoming the authority on what qualifies as fitting into a culture's belief structure. From the pulpit of moral authority political authority is a short step away. In short, people can be manipulated into accepting almost anything politically or morally if the power of religious authority endorses it.


Kanellos the Greek Protest Dog

Kanellos has been spotted amid exploding tear gas canisters, confronting riot police, and from all reports has shown enormous solidarity by always siding with the protesters. Last night the CBC's peice showed him doing a cameo on one of their broadcasts. i suspect that he's the most popular dog in the world today as the slide show at The Gaurdian was almost impossible to load this AM.

i noticed from the pictures that Kanellos always has a collar and a dog tag and that he's appeared in many places all over Greece. So #1 it's a fairly safe assumption that he's going to the protests with his people. #2 his people aren't the cops or army.

Kanellos, like his brethern worldwide, is showing us how to be noble, how to give unconditional love, how to live the life of an impeccable warrior. Kanellos and my dog Pancho will always stand up for what they believe in. i've seen my dogs Ali, Happy [may they rest in peace] and Pancho fearlessly charge a huge bear and never waver, never blink. They would, each of them, instantly lay down their lives in my and my family's defense. Kanellos is a proud member of evolution's highest acheivement.

If the Christians are right i wanna go to doggy heaven. If the Buddhists are right i wanna be reincarnated as a dog. Meanwhile my best friend and i live our little lives together in service to each other and i try every moment to be as perfect a being as my best friend is.

With Dog on Your Side - The Guardian has a great slide show here


Living Beyond Our Means

Governments around the world quaked yesterday when they saw the results of 'living beyond our means' in Greece. The panic that resulted from some stock trader pressing the wrong button was a clear signal that the greed markets are perched on the edge of an abyss. i've stood at the edge of the Grand Canyon and i've felt the panic, the adrenaline and the rising hot air.

Greece isn't alone in its inability to live within its means, 99% of the western world lives that way everyday. Greece owes billions, the EU, as a whole, owes trillions so does the US. But the debts of governments are dwarfed by the debts of their citizens. The whole consumptive capitialist disease is running aground on the shoals of debt but most still continue to believe in the fantasy that if they just borrow a bit more everything will get better. It won't, it can't. We can mortage our children's future by borrowing and spending today but one day the financial grim reaper will come to collect his due and it'll be curtains for them if not for you.

'We the people' don't need all this crap it's the rich and their zombie banker slaves that need us to keep mindlessly consuming the planet's limited resources faster and faster. We live in the garden but, blinded by our worldview, we don't see.

We milk the cow of the world, and as we do, we whisper in her ear, "You are not true" -Richard Wilbur


Los Suns

Last night's playoff game in Pheonix was historical. Led by Captain Canada and two time NBA MVP-Steve Nash, the Pheonix Suns rose above their sport by taking a stand against the new racist immigration law in Arizona. Thousands marched down the street outside the game, thousands more wore Los Suns jerseys in the stands, in the march and on the streets. The game itself was close and Los Suns held on to win. But winners and losers, players and spectators, marchers, newcasters, and viewers alike were all a part of basketball rising above its normal sphere of entertainment and soaring like an eagle above Pheonix and above the fear and bigotry of racism.

Below are a few quotes from today's news about last night's gesture by Los Suns:

Two-time MVP point guard Steve Nash, who in 2003 became the first athlete to go on record against the Iraq war, said: "I think the law is very misguided. I think it is unfortunately to the detriment to our society and our civil liberties and I think it is very important for us to stand up for things we believe in. I think the law obviously can target opportunities for racial profiling. Things we don't want to see and don't need to see in 2010."

On Tuesday the news came forth that on Cinco de Mayo, the team would be wearing jerseys that say simply Los Suns. Team owner Robert Sarver said, after talking to the team, that this will be an act of sartorial solidarity against the bill. Their opponent, the San Antonio Spurs, have made clear that they support the gesture.

This kind of political intervention by a sports team is without precedent and now every athlete and every team has an opening to stand up and be heard. Because when it's all said and done, this isn't just a battle for the soul of Arizona. It's a battle for the soul of the United States. Here come the Suns indeed.

'Los Suns' Set Against Arizona's Immigration Law - The Phoenix Suns basketball team takes a public stand against Arizona's law that promotes racial profiling of immigrants.


Time is running out.

Every day another environmental disaster, like the pieces breaking off Antarctica, show out how hollow the denials of global warming are. But deny global warming they will, because from tobacco to nuclear waste it has always paid to stonewall and deny. The food, the air, the water are all under attack by the global corporate agenda, no untrampled corner of this small planet will remain soon. The great northern forests that once encircled the top of the planet are almost gone, the African Savannah, the tropical rainforests, the coral reefs are following right along.

The Empire feeds on the myth of endless economic growth. This shortsighted approach has the planet's limited resources disappearing faster, and the environment becoming more polluted, every day. The corporations, corrupted governments, bankers, and individuals who are destroying the earth and gobbling up our children's futures are doing so because they are making a lot of money at it.

Meanwhile, in what passes for democracy, who votes for the trees, the bees, the microbes that support life?. Protest seems senseless, when you’re protesting you’re recognizing the authority of the people that you oppose even as you oppose them. Another road is direct action. Direct action can take many forms. One person or group of folks might grow their own of everything, living within the smallest possible ecological footprint. Others might only participate in the counter-culture cash economy, avoiding tax collectors, census takers, and bankers like the plague. Another might undertake economic sabotage against corporations and government agencies profiting from the destruction of the environment. Some might go for the 'hat trick'. Having no hierarchy, no structure of its own makes all forms of direct action dangerous to authority.

Time is running out.


The Circle Story Game

A long time ago when my daughter, now the mother of my grandchildren, was herself a little girl we started a circle story game that we played at home and especially on our road trips. The game went like this: one of us would make up and start a fiction/fantasy story about, well about anything the starter thought up [we took turns starting].

Then after a few sentences the next person would take up the story and add a few sentences from their imagination, then the 3rd person would add their bit and round and round it would go. Of course every time the story teller changed so would the story. Each different circle story game would evolve differently as they went around. It was great fun and sometimes the stories would go on for a long time, sometimes only a few circles, sometimes they'd continue as part of another story.

We started doing this when our daughter were maybe 4 so. Of course mom and i would keep the story interesting and at our daughter's level of understanding by molding it that way during our turns. Beside the fun we all had it was always very interesting to hear our little girl's changes to the evolving plots and characters both because they were so pure and because it taught both her mom and i so much about what was happening inside of her young mind and emotions. For instance, no matter how the story started she almost always slowly manipulated it during her turns to be about some form of family of creatures the mommy of whom had many happy healthy babies and lived happily everafter.

And now, nearly 35 years later, there she is, living her own self-directed life with her healthy, happy babies just like in her circle game stories. As our little girl grew older the stories we played with grew more complicated and eventually the game faded away, but i loved our circle story game and so did her mom. i'm sure we both wish those days had never ended, but that's a different story.


'Ask every question, question every answer'

Times Square Bomb story diverts mainstream attention away from Gulf disaster, how convient. The net is alive this morning with cries of HOAX. Seems quite a few folks, in addition to me, smell something rotten in Times Square. By yesterday morning the US mainstream media had pushed the disaster in the Gulf of Mexico off the headlines and replaced it with a good 'ol flag waving boogeyman terrorist FEAR story.

At first i just wondered at how such an incompetent bomber had managed to pull off such a complicated plot. Someone had secured an SUV in Texas, gotten it to Connecticut, plastered on stolen lisence plates, removed the VIN [a complicated task in itself] then built such a stupid bomb. Bomb making information is openly available to any nut case that's interested on the web. There's hundreds of ways to make things go BOOM. Fireworks and garden fertilizer don't go BOOM.

Then i started to wonder about the immediate refocusing of the corporate media's lens away from the real disaster, the real thing in the Gulf. It was just to convient, just to timely. Then this morning i started searching the web and found hundreds of other opinions-ideas about the hoax potential of the Times Square smoke and fireworks show. Search for yourself, think for yourself. Maybe its all bullshit, but don't just accept the word of the 'authorities' on anything ever.

'Ask every question, question every answer.'

GORDON DUFF: TIMES SQUARE BOMB HOAX, ISRAELI INTEL GROUP SHOWS IT’S HAND - Only days after a warning of an Israeli “false flag” bombing against the US “in the works” a massive car bomb is discovered in Time Square!


The Pelicans and the People

The pelicans sit on their nests in the picture on the left along with other shore birds seemingly oblivious to the orange containment boom behind them. The pelicans are doing what their instincts and nature have co-evolved as a survival game plan over milliuons of years. It's been a successful plan for these shore birds so far but it looks like the jig is up for most of them.

This could be a useful metaphor for humans. We too sit wrapped in our security blanket seemingly oblivious to the ecological destruction just beyond our immedite attention. We've served and been served by our paradigm of 'more' for thoousands of generations and, like the pelicans, have become glued to our worldview. The pelicans have the ability to fly away and live to have more eggs in a better place one day but instead sit on their nests trapped by a net woven of their past success and their inability to forsee the logical outcome of the events surrounding them.

The forces of ecological and enviromental destruction caused by human consumption encircle us just as the oil slick encircles the pelicans. We deny the obvious because it suits our immediate wants, our short term convienence and comfort and because it's worked to do this in the past. Both the pelicans and the humans are blind to the outcome of their short-term success.


"Everywhere is War"

How sad, millions of our fellow creatures are in the midst of a holocaust in and around the Gulf of Mexico. i tried watching the news about it this AM but ended up in tears almost immediately. Thousands of birds are sitting on nests throughout the various wildlife refuges that encompass much of the gulf shoreline. They sit, they fly, they squawk, they defend their nest area from other shorebirds. Unfortunately they don't see or understand what is approaching or why.

The innocent wait patiently for the forces of self centered greed to wash ashore and steal their futures. They don't understand that the oil rig didn't have a safe-working automatic shut off like other rigs off the shores of other countries because the oil companies found it cheaper and easier to bribe the politicans into passing laws that exempted them. They don't understand that the corporations control the regulators, that money rules and wildlife drools in Amerika.

The recipients of corporate oil money get equal time on the mainstream media singing their war cry "drill baby drill". Where is the empathy for their fellow creatures. Is their compassion limited by their deluded beliefs that all the world's creatures are here for mankind's use? We are the birds not their shepards, we are the fish, we have no dominion over nature we are a small simple part of it.

The innocent creatures will be dying again as a result of our lifestyles. As long as humans believe this fairy tale of a special relationship with a 'god' invented in their own image "everywhere is war" as Bob Marley said.

Oil Comes Ashore in Gulf, Scale of 'Historic' Disaster Sets In - Oil from a collapsed offshore drilling platform oozed onto the Louisiana coastline early Friday morning, threatening the worst environmental disaster to hit the U.S. in two decades.

BP Enjoys Lobbying Strength, Close Ties to Lawmakers as Federal Investigation Looms - If BP faces heavy federal scrutiny, it's well-positioned to fight back: The London-based company has consistently spent top dollar to influence legislative and regulatory activity in Washington, D.C., the Center for Responsive Politics finds.