America: One Crazy Country

I really don’t know where to begin this post or how to write it convincingly. I know I’m going to insult some people and will get the usual baseless rebuttals, but I’ve been commenting on these issues long enough now that one thing I’m convinced of is that in spite of Occupy Wall Street, the relative success of Ron Paul’s presidential campaign and other good signs, Americans in general are still in denial of or oblivious to the facts about their country.

Instead of writing a lengthy thesis and presenting facts that have been presented brilliantly elsewhere, this post is mainly a list of links. So, without further ado, here they are:

On 9/11: This is the latest and best out of a long list of articles that demolish the official account of the events of 911. For me, 911 represents a deception that must be exposed if you want to have a ghost of a chance of waking up:

What is “Best Evidence?” | Consensus 911

On Barack Obama: If ever there was a wolf in sheep’s clothing, it’s Barack Obama. This is a voluminous list of his “achievements” while in office:

Obama Fact Sheet

I lived most of my adult life believing Gaddafi was a tyrant and a buffoon. That didn’t stop me from being appalled by the invasion of Libya by the United States and its puppet allies. I was equally appalled by Obama’s calling it “humanitarian intervention” when even a close look at what was being presented on CNN made it obvious that civilian targets were being destroyed and that it was not a popular revolution. It seems that I, too, got suckered by the mainstream media’s portrayal (caricaturisation?) of Gaddafi:

Gaddafi: A Hero Not a Villain

Do you feel all warm and fuzzy when you buy a pink ribbon on Breast Cancer Awareness Week? For about 20 years, I fell for all these Cancer fund raisers. Then I began to wonder why no progress was being made and why chemotherapy was still the “treatment” of choice. It took another ten years for it to sink in that the reason was simple: a cancer cure would cost the industry billions. Then I started looking into the subject and discovered that many of those “quack cures” are actually natural therapies that work. Here’s an article by Mike Adams about breast cancer:

Breast Cancer Deception

The last article on my list is one I wrote myself. It’s about Monsanto, GM foods and Obama’s appointment of Monsanto chief lobbyist as adviser to the FDA:

Obama and His Abominable Appointment

Add up the evidence and it’s not a very pretty picture. By all means, do your own research and come to your own conclusions. My biggest complaint about Americans is that we so blindly accept what our authority figures tell us. I’ve been as guilty of that as anyone. Doctors, some Democrats, the odd spiritual guru and academics were a few of my trusted authority figures. Who are some of yours?



David Icke vs Alfred Korzybski: the Matrices of Illusion

I have never had the experience, but my Cambodian wife frequently saw shape shifting phenomena when she lived alone in the jungle. She has not only seen “apparitions” before, one helped her when she was in the jungle. She nearly severed her achilles tendon on a shard of metal and a “nyetah” appeared before her and told her how to dress and treat the wound. She didn’t consider it in any way “miraculous.” Other dimensions are as real to her as this one.

Wm. Blake's Beast of the Apocalypse

Wm. Blake's Beast of the Apocalypse: David Icke isn't the first person to believe in shape shifting reptilians

David Icke is another person who has seen and/or believes in alternative perceptions of reality enough to have incorporated them into his personal world view. I find him to be one of the most fascinating and, in his way, informative public figures around today because he exposes so many of the matrices of illusion so many of us are caught up in. His explanation for the state of virtual slavery we live in is that we are under the thrall of shape shifting reptilian aliens who manipulate us in hundreds of subtle ways.

Alfred Korzybski was quite a bit more pragmatic than David Icke, but he, too, understood that as a species, we tend to be out of touch with reality and live in a state of illusion. I’m no Korzybski scholar, so take the following with a grain of salt, but this is what I have learned from him:

  1. The language of mathematics is the only language that accurately reflects physical reality.
  2. Languages always distort reality. Words have as many shades of meaning as there are speakers or writers. In fact, the same speaker or thinker can and does unconsciously change the meaning of words regularly.

Korzybski proposed some changes in our use of language that he felt would help free us from the tyranny and divisiveness of language. He called these, “extensional devices.” For accuracy’s sake and to save time, I’ve copied and pasted this quote from the Institute of General Semantics website:

To achieve the coveted consciousness of abstracting, more appropriate evaluations, etc., techniques were taken directly from modern physico-mathematical methods, the use of which has been found empirically effective and of most serious preventive value, particularly on the level of children’s education. Korzybski calls the following expediencies extensional devices:

  • Indexes to train us in consciousness of differences in similarities, and similarities in differences, such as Smith1, Smith2, etc.
  • Chain-indexes to indicate interconnections of happenings in space-time, where a ’cause’ may have a multiplicity of ‘effects’, which in turn become ’causes’, introducing also . environmental factors, etc. For instance, Chair1-1 [NOTE, read chair “one” “one”] in a dry attic as different from Chair1-2 in a damp cellar, or a single happening to an individual in childhood which may color his reactions (chain-reactions) for the rest of his life, etc. Chain-indexes also convey the mechanisms of chain-reactions, which operate generally in this world, life, and the immensely complex human socio-cultural environment, included.
  • Dates to give a physico-mathematical orientation in a space-time world of processes.
  • Et cetera (etc., which can be abbreviated to double punctuation, such as ., or .; or .:) to remind us permanently of the second premise “not all”­to train us in a consciousness of characteristics left out; and to remind us indirectly of the first premise “is not”­to develop flexibility and a greater degree of conditionality in our semantic reactions.
  • Quotes to forewarn us that elementalistic or metaphysical terms are not to be trusted and that speculations based on them are misleading. [In this article single quotes are used for this purpose.]
  • Hyphens to remind us of the complexities of interrelatedness in this world.

That’s a lot to memorise and I think we would fall into the trap Korzybski is trying to get us out of if we committed it to memory and took it as “gospel” anyway. Years ago, when I first stumbled across his work, I came away with this “extensional device”:

Always be aware that any conviction or belief is opinion, not necessarily absolute fact.

While “2 + 2 = 4″ is a useful and generally acceptable “fact” and falls under Korzybski’s definition of mathematical veracity, on a quantum or other level of reality it may or may not be true or relevant. I accept it as truth in my daily life, but I don’t feel existentially bound by it.

Similarly, I love David Icke’s shape shifting reptilian aliens theory, but don’t accept it as gospel. For me, it is a great way to see through the matrix we live in. What better way to understand how we have come to believe that:

  • money that is created out of thin air has value
  • chemical medications are superior to plant-based ones
  • we are threatened by terrorists
  • we are engaging in humanitarian wars
  • we live in a democratic society
  • Newtonian science is the only reality
  • Darwin presented us with facts, not just a theory

These are just a few of the illusions we buy into, but there are signs of awakening.  We are so accustomed to learning from others, though, that we have a tendency to fall into their matrices of illusion. Put another way: we trade one limiting matrix for another.

I think we sometimes get too carried away when we begin to believe in or see “alternative realities.” I think it might be better to think of them as “alternative illusions.” Shape shifting reptilians believe in their own illusions, too. That may be the ultimate secret to overcoming them. As David Icke’s book title says: Infinite Love Is the Only Reality: Everything Else Is Illusion. We have the capacity for love. Those who wish to enslave us do not have that capacity or choose not to exercise it, I’m not sure which. At any rate, I feel no kinship with them: they feel alien to me and even I have had the occasion “hallucination” that a public figure has shape shifted into a reptilian form.

In my opinion, the more we explore the meaning of the word love, the more liberated (or enlightened, if you prefer) we become. This opinion may be my personal illusion, but it works for me. What else is there that binds us together, nourishes us, heals us and helps us grow?

Are You a Zombie or One of the Sheeple? Take the Test and See

As you have probably noticed, I’ve added a sticky post at the top of my home page. It currently includes links to two of my favourite affiliate sites. Right now I want to introduce you to Mike Adams, the Health Ranger. I’ve joined The Natural News Store affiliate program because I’ve been following his newsletter and blog for some time now and trust his integrity.

The quote below is from his recent article, The top ten signs that you might be a zombie. I happen to be a big Ron Paul fan because, like David Icke, Mike Adams and a few others, he sticks with his convictions regardless of their affect on his popularity. Now that the public is waking up at least a little bit, perhaps his time has finally come. I’m not as keen on Occupy Wall Street. Although I like the message, the movement has no cohesion and therefore, in the short term at least, has no real teeth. With an election looming, I believe Ron Paul is the only practical hope for America and by extension the world.

Anyway, I’m not here to dictate to you. Read the whole article and see what you think.

Sign #9: If you find yourself rooting for any presidential candidate other than Ron Paul, you’re probably a political zombieRon Paul is the only Presidential candidate who has offered a genuine balanced budget all the other candidates want to keep spending us into financial oblivion. Ron Paul is the only Presidential candidate who stands firmly for health freedom, ending prohibition against medical marijuana, legalizing the farming of industrial hemp, and allowing nutritional supplement companies to make accurate, scientifically-validated health claims for their products. All the other candidates are just corporate puppets who have nothing to offer America other than a continuation of the problems that have driven our nation into economic and political turmoil.To vote for Romney, Perry, Cain or even Obama is to mindlessly vote for continuing the same broken system of puppet Presidents who answer to their corporate globalist masters just like Bush.

via The top ten signs that you might be a zombie.

Signs That You Might Be Part of the Herd

Here’s another article I came across, this time on Reddit. Mike Adams doesn’t make the distinction between different types of zombies or “sheeple”. This article mentions what I find to be the most annoying ones of all. I couldn’t help but add this to my growing collection of articles on the subject. Please read the whole segment, if not the whole article. It may even be better than Mike’s.

The ‘Quasi-Intellectual’ Sheeple:

My favorite kind of sheeple. These people hold themselves in very high esteem. Some even see themselves as part of the elite (though most of them are not). Normally from the “professional class”, they often hold positions as Doctors, Lawyers, Bankers, Investors, Professors, Scientists, etc, though some have not yet left the university setting, and are simply getting a head start on their superiority complex.

via Sheeple: Signs That You Might Be Part Of The Herd | War On You: Breaking Alternative News.

Shambhala Sun – This is Your Brain on Mindfulness (July 2011)

This is Your Brain on Mindfulness

Meditators say their practice fundamentally changes the way they experience life. MICHAEL BAIME reports on how modern neuroscience is explaining this in biological terms.


Note the balanced brain on the right

One of the most interesting areas of research on the effects of contemplative practices has explored the possibility that the actual structure of the brain is changed by meditation practice. Several neuroscientists have shown that some of the brain regions activated during meditation are actually different in people who meditate regularly, and the most recent evidence suggests that the changes can occur in as little as eight weeks. This finding is at odds with what we think we know about brain structure in adults. We used to believe that sometime shortly after twenty-five or thirty years of age the brain was finished with growth and development. From then on, the brain became progressively impaired by age and injury, and it was all downhill from there. But recent meditation research suggests that this glum outcome may not be inevitable. Meditation practice is associated with changes of specific brain areas that are essential for attention, learning, and the regulation of emotion.

via Shambhala Sun – This is Your Brain on Mindfulness (July 2011).

Bob Dylan Revisited on Wall Street

Note: this is a rejigged version of a post I wrote a couple of years ago:

Bob Dylan’s Mr. Tambourine Man is my all-time favourite song. I heard it for the first time in about 1964 or ’65, when my sister Laraine was on a Spring break from college. It was her second semester of college, I think, and after a stifling youth in the conservative suburb of Manhattan Beach, California, she was still on a high (in more ways than one) from the liberation that comes from leaving the family nest for the first time.One evening, she dug out a 45rpm and set up our “portable” record player. It weighed a ton, but was pretty high tech for its day. She told me to lie down, close my eyes and just listen to the words. At that time of my life, I was a pretty shallow character, but I looked up to Laraine because she was the brains in the family, so I complied with her request.I think I must have listened to that song a dozen times that night and every time I did, it had the same magical effect. For the first time in my life, I knew what it felt like to be transported. I’m not going to spoil the song for you or for me by analyzing it, but here is one of my favorite stanzas:

Then take me disappearin’ through the smoke rings of my mind
Down the foggy ruins of time, far past the frozen leaves
The haunted, frightened trees, out to the windy beach
Far from the twisted reach of crazy sorrow
Yes, to dance beneath the diamond sky with one hand waving free
Silhouetted by the sea, circled by the circus sands
With all memory and fate driven deep beneath the waves
Let me forget about today until tomorrow

When Dylan went electric, many of his fans were appalled. While I was personally disappointed, I wasn’t appalled. It seemed to me like he was simply doing what he wanted to do at the time. Yes, I was critical and agreed with the general consensus that he had “sold out”, but it was his choice to make, not mine. Nothing of the magic of his early work was lost to me, but I quit looking for inspiration from him for decades.

I often return to those early Bob Dylan songs and for me they remain as magical as ever. I often wonder where the inspiration for them came. Apparently so does he. Here’s something I found in  Great Inspirational Quotes:

“I don’t know how I got to write those songs. Those early songs were almost magically written.”

This is highly relevant to me today as I contemplate trying to find something to say about the big news online today: Occupy Wall Street. Something about it has been bugging me from the beginning. On the one hand, I sympathise with them. On the other hand, their herd-like behaviour disturbs me. I’ve watched dozens of video clips and three things creep me out the most:

  1. The repetition of what is being said.
  2. The “consensus” rule that decides who will be allowed to speak.
  3. The collective high.

I saw all of that happen in the sixties, when my generation rebelled against the “establishment” only to become an establishment of our own. I learned this when I decided to cut my hair to make travel through the Middle East easier for me in 1970. Suddenly I wasn’t acceptable to my hippy culture any more. This wasn’t universally the case, but I certainly learned from the experience.

As time passed, so did the hippy era. Some clung to their ideals, but most got re-assimilated into the establishment. For the most part, those who embraced the American “ideals” of greed and selfishness the most were those who had embraced the hippy movement most ardently. Yes, while it was “cool” to do so, they passionately opposed the Vietnam War (especially those who were threatened by the draft) and called each other “brother” and “sister”, but it wasn’t long before the threat of military induction passed and “brotherhood” became an empty word.

I get the feeling that if today’s “establishment” wanted to bring OWS to a quick close, it could easily be done by offering the protesters jobs on Wall Street. Like the fear of the draft, most of them are driven by fear, not ideals. I hope I’m wrong and will be proven to be a cynical old man, but if you’ve ever seen a herd of sheep change direction out of fear or the promise of food, only to be sheered or slaughtered, you’d see what I mean. Why do I think this? It’s because so many of them were suckered into their college loans by the promise of high paying jobs and only got angry when the jobs weren’t forthcoming. Give them a job and they’ll go away and leave you free to rape and pillage again.

I’m going to close with a few more Bob Dylan quotes and a brief comment:

Everything passes. Everything changes. Just do what you think you should do.

I define nothing. Not beauty, not patriotism. I take each thing as it is, without prior rules about what it should be.

I don’t think the human mind can comprehend the past and the future. They are both just illusions that can manipulate you into thinking there’s some kind of change.

Another Bob Dylan song that I love is “The Times They Are a’Changin'”. At that time, I believed his words, but time proved Dylan (and me) wrong. Most of our generation was assimilated by the system and America returned to its greedy, war mongering ways. I like to hope that this time change will occur, but I don’t think it’s going to occur on Wall Street.

Steve Jobs Death and the Spectre of Cancer in Cambodia

People die. Most of us die unremembered by all but a handful of our closest relatives. In fact, my wife just called and told me that an aunt just died unexpectedly. We are sending her body back to Svay Renh, where she can be buried in her home village.

Steve Jobs goes to heaven

Source: The Washington Post - click image to visit

Other people die in the public eye. Steve Jobs was one of those. I learned about it when I turned on the TV at lunch time. CNN happened to be one of the only channels that was working and they were having a special tribute to Jobs. Then, when I returned to my computer to work, I opened my email and saw the following attachment from the Health Ranger. As I wrote in a comment:

I just sat back down to work after watching CNNs coverage of Steve Jobs’ death when I got the newsletter that directed me to this page. I was thinking about many of the points you raise here as I watched the CNN tribute and am very pleased to see them so sensitively addressed here. Thank you.

The reason why I was prompted to write those words was because the writer didn’t fail to see the downside of Jobs’ legacy, yet didn’t condemn him either. He looked at him as a human being with faults as well as virtues. Steve Jobs was a larger than life public figure, but he wasn’t larger than life, as his death proves. The part of the article that was most meaningful to me begins with this heading:

Live by principle, because that’s the only thing you take with you

It’s been said a million times before, in a million different ways, but we still don’t seem to get it – or at least don’t take it to heart. While gadgets like the Mac computer, the iPod, the iPhone and the iPad are cool and useful, in the end they are just gadgets and can be put to positive or negative use.

I’m in no position to judge or even have an opinion about Steve Jobs. He is less real to me than Sopheak’s aunt, who used to live near us and washed our clothes for us until she found a job somewhere else. All I know about him are the myths. Like all deaths, his emphasises the fact that we are only here temporarily and if our lives have any significance, it’s in the principles by which we live them. I believe we leave a karmic footprint behind us and carry our footsteps forward, hopefully to learn and grow from each lifetime. I can’t prove it, but I’m sure of it. One thing is for sure: you can’t take your wealth, power or influence with you when you die. In the bigger picture, even gold is nothing but a fiat currency that is of no real value at all.

Steve Jobs dead at 56, his life ended prematurely by chemotherapy and radiotherapy for cancer

Interestingly, we just moved another relative from the public hospital here in Sihanoukville to the clinic run by our family doctor. What’s interesting about that? He suspects she has breast cancer and needs a biopsy, so we’re now taking her to Phnom Penh since that can’t be done here. Our doctor has already recommended chemotherapy. That puts me between a rock and a hard place because I have serious doubts about the efficacy of that treatment, yet have no alternative to offer her. It’s not that I don’t have alternative theories: I just have no alternative proof that would tip the scales in favour of her trying something else.

Also interesting is that just last week I had a short assignment to write about the benefits of soursop fruit. There are claims that it is a powerful anti-cancer treatment. Fortunately, we have fresh soursop here in abundance, so I’m buying that for her and encouraging her to eat it. It’s as much to ease my conscience as anything else, because I feel I’m sending her to her death sentence by sending her to Phnom Penh, but feel powerless to do anything else. The kind of treatment she receives is not up to me, partly because an NGO is footing the bill for the treatment and partly because I don’t believe in dictating to others just because I’m financing her hospital care and transportation.

It seems like we’re hearing about somebody dying of cancer every day these days. I took the afternoon off today and went to the beach. While I was there, I overheard a conversation between two Americans. One of them was telling the other about the chemotherapy he was getting from Thailand for his wife. He was grateful because it “only” cost $350 a month, which I guess is something to be grateful for because he went on to say that the going rate, even here, is something like $1500 a month.

When I got home, I asked my wife if Cambodians had always died of cancer and she said no, it was a recent phenomenon. I also asked her if she knew of any traditional remedies for it and she knew of none.  Cambodians, like other cultures left out of the modern medical loop, have always had to rely on indigenous plant-based remedies. There is something for everything, but nothing for cancer. I’m just speculating here, but I can’t help but wonder why. I know the standard medical line is that there are few records of cancer prior to the 20th century because it was not an identified disease, but come on; you get a lump, it is excruciatingly painful and you die. If it was historically prevalent, there would be records of it and indigenous treatments would have been tried. I’ve heard another line that people died too young before the miracle of modern medicine to contract cancer, but both of these women are young and so are so many cancer victims.

Once again, I’m talking off the top of my head here. I’d more than welcome any comments, criticism or advice.

While I’m on a roll here, a couple of years ago I was commissioned to write some articles about THC as a treatment for cancer. It was then that I learned about the dark side of the American medical profession and the pharmaceutical industry. I’m going to have to dig those articles out and rewrite them.