Thursday, February 26, 2009


Just a little humor floating around in email...

Sunday, February 22, 2009

What's Your Plan?

"It was a clear day when the non-instrument rated commercial pilot named Mark left Billings, Montana, in his Beechcraft Debonair. However, the weather along his route through the mountains was not good and was forecast to get worse. When the briefer says twice that VFR flight is not recommended, Mark's response is that the sooner he leaves the better, and that he can 'get a long way down there and then take another look.'"

Jay Hopkins, in an article entitled Responding to Reality published in the March 2009 issue of FLYING magazine, quotes and comments on Deep Survival: Who Lives, Who Dies, and Why written by Laurence Gonzales.

"Gonzales says that one of the biggest problems that get people into trouble in survival situations is that they do not face reality. They want to believe they can still proceed according to their plan, and this blocks an accurate assessment of their real situation."

"Gonzales points out that in our complex, technological world we have come to depend on a problem-solving strategy that 'often gives us a illusory sense of control that fails us in moments of crisis.'"

LESSON: "Plan the flight and fly the plan. But don't fall in love with the plan. Be open to a changing world and let go of the plan when necessary so that you can make a new plan." Laurence Gonzales

Sunday, February 15, 2009

The He/She Other

Merging into traffic requires cooperation with that unknown driver element. You know, does the he/she driving the other vehicle appreciate the smooth rhythmic flow of traffic, or, will the he/she anticipate your intention to change lanes and block your every effort? As I exited the interstate into the left lane, other vehicles were entering the exit into the right lane. About a quarter mile ahead on the right was the Mall entrance. Apparently ALL the traffic needed to make that right turn including me. Today's he/she other driver realized before I did that my merging into the right lane would be difficult unless someone let me in. So the he/she other stuck to my right rear blind spot like super-glue. Frustrated, knowing that I needed to be in the right lane and that the he/she other wouldn't let me in, I looked straight ahead to find myself alone in the left lane. Well, I stepped on the gas. Passed every car (about 15 cars) in the right lane. Changed lanes. Turned right into the Mall entrance. And asked myself, "What just happened?"

The path everyone was travelling, the path I thought I needed to take, turned out to be unnecessary. By not pressing to conform to the known path, I discovered another - the one that opened before me - like an open door.

LESSON: Don't insist on your own understanding. You may miss the open door right in front of you.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Who Do You Trust?

This post contains a portion of an article reviewing, How the Rich Are Destroying the Planet, by Herve Kempf (available in English on followed by comments from my spiritual advisor.

How the Rich Are Destroying the Planet: A Review
By Leslie Thatcher
Truthout Review, Mar 15, 2007

"The first stage in Kempf's argument is to adduce the irrefutable evidence of an accelerating ecological catastrophe as humanity's use of the planet's resources overshoots the Earth's carrying capacity:

While, according to one researcher Kempf cites, humanity's resource use was at 50 percent of the Earth's biocapacity in 1950, by 2003, it had reached 120 percent - consuming resources faster than the Earth can reproduce them.

Foretastes of the ultimate catastrophe are suggested by avian flu worries, the destruction of New Orleans by the combined impact of Hurricane Katrina and infrastructure failures before and after the storm, and by increased mortality associated with the 2003 heat wave in Europe.

Each environmental "problem" is linked to all the others; their synergy and imbrication propel us "in the direction of unstoppable destruction" and preclude any idea of separate crises, "solvable independently of one another." Why, Kempf asks, when the situation is so clear and alarming, does it remain so stubbornly intractable to change? He concludes that "if nothing happens even though we're entering an ecological crisis of historic gravity, it's because those who have power in the world want it to be this way."


"In spite of a distinct coolness of tone and a controlled reliance on statistics and citation, Kempf's depiction of "The Powerful of This World" echoes Old Testament prophetic outrage.

He quotes Peter Drucker on the destructiveness of unbridled executive compensation, St. Augustine on government ("If there is no justice, what are kingdoms, but vast systems of robbery?"), "Forbes, "The Economist,' and the "Financial Times" to create a portrait of a predatory, self-perpetuating elite that has become wealthy "not through success in production, but through constant redistribution of collective wealth" (think Halliburton or Blackwater senior executives and shareholders) and that lives "... separated from the plebians.

They are not aware of how the poor and wage-earners live; they don't know and don't want to know." No sense of the public good or civic virtue moves "this predatory and greedy controlling class, wasting its rents, misusing its power, (it) congeals as an obstacle on the way. It bears no proposal, is animated by no ideal, delivers no promise ... is blind to the explosive power of obvious injustice. And blind to the poisoning of the biosphere that growth in material wealth provokes, a poisoning that means a degradation of the conditions for human life...."


Since the collapse of the former USSR, it appears that capitalism no longer needs democracy - so antithetical to the oligarchy's objectives. Terrorism is the latest alibi to tighten security, criminalize dissent, expand surveillance and imprison the poor. "The hyper-rich will attempt to maintain their excessive advantages by force as they did after Hurricane Katrina, when armed forces were sent - not to help the drowning poor - but to hunt down looters. "An ironic twist of history could even be an authoritarian government's use of ecological necessity as a pretext to persuade the people to accept a restriction of freedoms - without, however, touching [socioeconomic] inequality."

The following are the accompanying comments from our spiritual advisor received in the email dated April 1, 2007:

"Those of you who have been following what I have written on this subject will remember that I have said, very explicitly, that from the light given to us by the Holy Spirit, that this is exactly the course that will be followed. The collapse of the earth, (witness the destruction of the honey bees), its inability to support life, the loss of drinking water, the death of the oceans, the increasingly wild weather as a result of Global Warming, and the desperate confrontation between China and its allies with the American Empire will all lead to the rise from the oligarchy of a Strong Man.

A desperate race will look for salvation in the power of the oligarchy and its great central figure, the coming Antichrist. This new savior will indeed be "anti" or "in place of" the Christ who has already saved mankind, if indeed the salvation would be seized upon.

You will remember that the rise from among the oligarchy of a Strong Man was the process that completed the destruction of the Roman Republic, and led to its complete imperialization and absolute power in the hands of emperors who wished and claimed to be God.

This will all happen again now in The Final Cycle. Let the reader understand.

The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, the power of the Heavenly Father, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you."

LESSON: Choose to trust "the Christ who has already saved mankind, if indeed the salvation would be seized upon."

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

What you hear about finances make you angry?

The following is quoted from Feb. 4, 2009 posting on THE MARKET TICKER by Karl Denniger in an article entitled TO OBAMA: Confidence Levels Critical.
"We have no real way to know because "the truth" keeps changing.
That's the root of the problem when you get down to it, and now this has gone beyond "Wall Street"
and speculators who are either shorting or buying these stocks - it is seeping into the consciousness of Americans, who apparently are deciding they'd like some physical cash in their hands - whether that's rational or not.
See, we have a problem in this country. We want to keep believing that it was all a mistake that led us into this mess. That there really wasn't systemic fraud and intentional, willful blindness up and down the line."

One of my coworkers attended a funeral recently for an elderly man she had met through her church. About a year ago the man's wife died. Sad and alone the new widower welcomed a young stranger into his life. The younger man told his hard luck story to the older man who was sympathetic. Having no children of his own, the older loaned the younger money. Offered him a place to live. Eventually lost most of his money. And died alone. The young man moved on and could not be prosecuted because the older man had willingly "shared" what he had.

LESSON: Trust is meant for the trustworthy. Be trustworthy. It is a gift to those who depend on you.