Full Disclosure. A – Z

Truthfully, I don’t know why I’ve felt motivated to create this posting.

Which consists of a few thoughts on an A – Z of topics I currently (apparently) feel strongly about.

Abortion

I am pro-choice. By which I mean that I believe a woman must have the final say over whether to carry a pregnancy to term. (& yes, I don’t mind admitting I had an abortion as a young woman.) It’s a deep, agonizing, complicated topic. Not at all, in my view, “black and white.” So I resent it when it is painted (by some folks I encounter) as a simple black & white issue.

Acid rain (& myriad other things)

There’s so much crap in the air (& water, & our food, our earth) from various industries that operate in our capitalist culture, that it’s hard to know what to say about it. Maybe just that it kind of sucks when the air is so dirty that it kills lakes (& heck, people). You know? (Yeah, I think acid rain was “solved.” Not sure. Still, all our bodies of water are polluted six ways to Sunday (or maybe 12). I heard several years back that the air we all breathe is actually carcinogenic. That just kinda sucks. You know??)

Activism

I’ve written about this a few times. E.g. here. (Note: links inside that post may or may not work; most likely not. 🙁 ) & I’ve been a pretty active activist for decades.

“Activism is the rent I pay for living on this planet.” (It was Alice Walker who said that.)

My own take is that anyone who tries to badmouth activists/activism has a questionable agenda – that needs to be questioned. #QuestionEverything. That’s my advice.

Agent Orange

Ain’t it just grand what governments / militaries get up to? In a word, not. Just really, really not.

Aluminum (& Alzheimer’s)

Something I’ve been learning a little about lately. Dr. Chris Exley asserts that we are living in the Age of Aluminum. There is a quite fascinating interview with him here. Aluminum affects us all, & particularly with respect to the issues of Alzheimer’s and vaccines. (Maybe you didn’t know that vaccines contain aluminum, but many of them do. It’s used as an “adjuvant” in some vaccines.) I don’t really want to get into the weeds on this here. Here are a few items that you can pursue to learn more: Aluminum and Mercury Synergy: A “Perfect Storm”; Trojan horses & Cluster Bombs; the documentary Injecting Aluminum; a Web site that explains quite a bit about vaccines & aluminum & immune activation, and the MedScience Research site (check out A for Aluminum, & go to town). Also, in this interview, Dr. Exley says, about 17 minutes in, “No aluminum: no Alzheimer’s.” (Later, at the 45-minute mark, he explains how scientists become corrupted.) Yet more items on aluminum in this (other) A- Z posting.

Anecdotal, eh?

There are those who discount “anecdotal” evidence, quite as though every single thing human beings get up to can, should & must be put under a microscope. Measured down to the most minute possible calibration (if that’s the right word). I can tell you this: my children are not “anecdotal.” I know they’re real, & I know exactly where they came from (my womb), & I’m pretty sure how they got there. I also know it isn’t “anecdotal” when someone runs over someone’s child or rapes someone or poisons children with mercury or lead or nukes or vaccines or … whatever. & I know doctors & scientists (with integrity) who now say “Don’t pay attention to averages. Pay attention to individual human beings.” Averages lie. (& so do corporations, governments, government agencies, politicians, advertisers, bureaucrats, etc. Quite routinely, all too often.)

Anger

I am better-tempered as I get older, but I’ve always had more than enough anger (& impatience) in me. Too much. My father was a very angry person. Maybe I got some of his anger gene; who knows? Anger can be useful in motivating one to take action in the world – to make things better, I mean. But clearly too, there’s too much anger in the world that just does damage. Especially within relationships. & in wars. No kidding, eh? (Here are some good quotations about anger.)

Arrogance

The arrogance of many men (seemingly superior from birth simply because, well, you know, Born.With.A.Penis) is hugely tiresome to me. & no doubt to a great many of us … including men who are not arrogant. (See also Patriarchy.) Equally tiresome is the arrogance of many doctors – both medical doctors & PhD scientists who seem to think their education has rendered them All-Knowing. They know Everything About Everything! Or so many of them seem to believe. To which I say “Piffle!” (when I am feeling inclined to be polite). Nobody knows everything about everything. A little humility, please, you with the penises & the white coats. Arrogance is just not pretty. (Nor is entitlement. Get over yourselves, already.)

Asbestos (& hypocrisy)

I don’t know all that much about asbestos. I do know that many have been harmed by it, & that a hypocritical government will outlaw its use in our own country, yet continue to export it to other countries. If that’s not hypocrisy, I don’t know what is. (It was the same with DDT.)

Authorities

I distrust them all. I like this quote: “The accepted, official version of anything is most likely false. All authority is based on fraud.” (Kenneth Rexroth). In the novel Jailbird, writer Kurt Vonnegut had a character say “Anarchists are people who believe with all their hearts that governments are enemies of their own people.”

Books / Libraries / Reading / Learning

Books have saved my ass. All. My. Life. I didn’t learn to read until Grade 1 – but I sure never looked back! To me, the library is humankind’s most civilized invention. I mean it! I intend to keep right on reading & learning stuff ‘till the day I croak. That’s the plan, anyway.

“Frederick Douglass taught that literacy is the path from slavery to freedom. There are many kinds of slavery and many kinds of freedom, but reading is still the path.” – Carl Sagan (found here)

Btw, this book, In the Absence of the Sacred – The Failure of Technology & the Survival of the Indian Nations may be the most important book I have ever read.

Boycotts

There are corporations & products I’ve boycotted for a long time. I heard some pretty awful stuff about Procter & Gamble a couple decades back, for example, & have done my best to avoid any/all of their products ever since (I had to dig on this a bit. Glad I did! They make more stuff than you might have guessed. Read labels!). I also avoid buying gas for my car (yes, I own one, which I’m not proud of, exactly) from Shell, a very stinky company. & Esso. (Of course, there is no such thing as “clean oil;” I know that. And yes, I’m a hypocrite too. This will come up again.) There are plenty of stinky companies/corporations worth boycotting.

Bullshit & Lies

(See also Lies/Liars/Lying): Our entire culture/way of life is so deeply, deeply awash in bullshit & secrets & lies that it’s a bit hard to know what to say, really. Bear in mind, I’ve been an activist & have been paying attention to myriad environmental & social justice issues for decades. We live in a broken culture, broken economic system, broken world. We got here by tolerating & disseminating secrets, bullshit & lies. & (un-earned) privileges & entitlements. That’s the way I see it. (I also think patriarchy is kind of at the head of the list of bullshit things that have ruined our world. So, see also Patriarchy.)

Cancer

We all know cancer is now epidemic. Take your pick as to why this is likely so. Radioactive fallout from weapons testing … & nuclear facilities? Toxic contents in vaccines (& other medications)? Toxins in our air, water, food, personal care products? All of the above? Very likely the latter. Good old synergy, eh? As for our “health care” system, there are some thoughts on that below. Cancer prevention, btw, is something for which I advocate. Prevent it from happening, rather than dealing with disaster later. If possible. This Web site/group Prevent Cancer Now can help. As well, I personally have found the series ‘The Truth About Cancer’ hugely informative.

Chemtrails / Geoengineering / Weather Modification

I “believe in” chemtrails (call it geoengineering or weather modification, if you prefer) & have done so for likely 2 decades now. For the record, Dr. Rosalie Bertell laid out the facts about the U.S. military & its weather modification efforts since the 1950s in her book Planet Earth – The Latest Weapon of War. I wrote about the topic here & don’t want to repeat myself.

Circles

We live on a round planet on which many circular processes operate. Seasons. Life & death. Etc. Stands to reason, maybe, that respecting circles would likely have been a (really) good idea all along for us humans. I wrote about all that here.

Cleavage

Seems to me it’s a tad overdone these days. Am I just jealous? As a small-breasted woman, perhaps it’s just sour grapes on my part? I don’t think so. I just think there’s a little more cleavage & general heaving around of breasts in everyone’s faces than is really strictly useful. Let’s face it: our eyes are drawn to bare skin; it seems to be the way we are wired (remember: we are not just big brains walking around on legs. We are creatures. The sexual impulse is hard-wired in us). While my own eyes are often drawn to bare arms, chests & legs (on members of either gender), truth is, I don’t really care to spend my time gawking at other people’s bodies. It takes conscious effort not to stare. Surely all the people baring so much know this perfectly well? (See also Sex, for a great & relevant Kurt Vonnegut quotation.)

Climate change

I believe in it. I believe it is human-induced. I’ve been arrested twice to protest government inaction on climate change. But I gotta add that I think most people (even many activists) have done very little in terms of their own lifestyles – their consumption & travel habits & so on – to deliberately lessen their personal carbon footprint. I think there’s quite a good deal of hypocrisy afoot on this front. Also, I think the problems (or problem: human civilization, using the term loosely) began so long ago that likely nothing we could have done in our lifetimes (as individuals) could or would have put the brakes on this particular run-away train (though I certainly made a very great many efforts as an individual to do so!). Yes, I do firmly believe the global climate is f**ked. I believe it is long past the time when “action on climate change” can do anything of much use. (See also Near-term extinction.) & btw, scientists issued a “World Scientists’ Warning to Humanity” way back in 1992. & then another one! Seems like nobody was listening???? (For a humdinger monster essay on climate change, check this out: Climate Change Summary and Update.)

 This! (Note the date!!)

Coal+Burning+%26+Climate-.jpg

Colonialism

Colonialism (trekking all over the globe to steal natural resources in other people’s homelands, & in so doing, enslaving &/or visiting genocide upon populations who are/were “in the way” of the rapacious culture doing the stealing) is very old. Ancient! It’s too bad human beings (in the “dominant” or dominating, culture) have never been much good at learning to appreciate and make do with what the Earth provided, gratis, at “home,” eh? Good old greed, eh? (Not)

“The myth of progress has sometimes served us well – those of us seated at the best tables, anyway.” – Ronald Wright in A Short History of Progress

Communication / Conversation

I’m plain crazy about the value of human communication & conversation. Seems to me it’s kind of what life is really all about! The whole darn karmic enchilada … as it were. For me, this quotation about says it all:

“It’s one of the secrets of the world. We all have the key to one another’s locks. But until we start to talk, we don’t know it.” – Michael Silverblatt

There are some great quotations about conversation here. 

Consumption

We human beings are/have been consumption hogs (with no insult intended to the pigs, who surely never earned our hostility. I guess you could say they’re smarter than we are! They don’t go around wielding a wrecking ball!) for a long while now. My generation (“baby boomers”) has been right over the top as mega-consumers. Whoa.

Control freaks

I’ve written about control freaks/control freakism/why I think we are control freaks, a few times, ‘cos I think it’s an important topic. I think the human tendency to control the behaviour of other humans is a sign of deep pathology. Me, the older I’ve become, the less interest I’ve had in bossing anyone around. I’d rather just walk, talk & drink beer. Lots more fun. 🙂 (Help inform people? Sure; that too.)

Corporations

“It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends upon his not understanding it.” (Upton Sinclair) This is relevant with respect to many people one knows, is it not? Sigh. I see there is a documentary about corporations here. Haven’t watched it. (Or maybe I have, & have forgotten?? Eeeek.) I wrote a short thing about corporations here.

Credibility

You gain credibility by being a person who tells the truth. Who is authentic. Reliable. Not by going around lying, concealing, exaggerating, obfuscating, spewing B.S. hither & yon. Industries/corporations/politicians/corporate spokespeople/advertisers do plenty of the latter. Lots & lots & lots. (Heck, we’re all drowning in it!) We ignore them (& what they get up to) at our peril. Now. If nobody trusts you worth diddly-squat, what are you left with? Maybe a big, fat bank account? I’ve heard “A clear conscience is more valuable than wealth” (Filipino proverb), and that resonates for me.

Cynicism

I do not consider myself a cynic. I’ve dug deeply into the topics I rant on about. So I’m not a cynic. I’m a realist. That’s my take, anyway. (Jaded? Absolutely.)

“No matter how cynical you become, it’s never enough to keep up.” (Lili Tomlin)

Democracy

Show me one! It certainly isn’t one here! Or in the U.S. The U.S. is Not a Democracy, It Never Was.

“’Reporter (to Mahatma Gandhi): Mr. Gandhi, what do you think of Western Civilization?” Gandhi: I think it would be a good idea.’”

True democracy would’ve been a great idea. Ah well. Bit late now!

Denial

Denial is epidemic. I’d say it’s a terminal disease. A killer. ‘cos in denying the truth about so much of what is happening on the planet, we’ve pretty much trashed the joint. You know?? Denial doesn’t make problems go away. They just go underground, & fester. Festering, eh? It even sounds awful.

DDT

DDT is one of those things that turned out to be really bad for living things. You can look it up (there is a very abbreviated history here). So what happened? Governments in North America made laws outlawing its use on crops here, but continued to allow its manufacture & export to other countries. I started eating organic food when a friend pointed out to me (decades ago now) that banana peels should not be placed in the compost pile ‘cos they were contaminated with DDT (from where they were grown). Quel wake-up call!

Divorce

I think divorce is far harder on children than most adults realize, or perhaps are prepared to admit. Sadly, I’ve been in the near vicinity of more divorces than you could shake a stick at.

“People think that because it’s common for families to break up, children must weather it okay, but I don’t think they do. I work with families for a living, and for their sake and for mine I’ve held out against the idea that breakups are apocalyptic―but they are. For children, it’s an atom bomb going off, no matter how tactfully parents manage it. Family life, whatever the quality, is the medium children live in. They’re not separate from it. An individual self that can prevail, that can withstand change and loss, is a wobbly construct at the best of times. It’s theoretical or, if it exists at all, must come sometime later. Maybe by middle age we have a self. In a child it doesn’t exist. A child has no skin. When the adults come asunder, the child does too. They just do. I know this mournfulness in [her daughter].” – from Starting Out in the Afternoon – a Mid-Life Journey into Wild Land, by Jill Frayne

Let’s just be real about stuff, okay?? The little people get hurt really, really easily. Let’s try our best not to hurt the little people any more than we strictly have to … okay?

Don’t Panic!

I’m re-reading The Hitch-Hikers Guide to the Galaxy, from which I’ve lifted the phrase Don’t Panic. It’s good advice! There’s so little we can do about the vast amounts of insanity taking place all around us, I think we are for sure each called to just … not panic. Sometimes that’s harder to do than others, hmmmm? (I know! I myself have days when I feel as though I’m spinning. Not fun.) Certain practices can help. Walks, journal-writing, being with friends/loved ones. Reading books. You know, stuff like that. (See also How to Cope with It All)

This Anne Lamott quotation has always seemed very helpful to me:

“…the world sometimes feels like the waiting room of the emergency ward and that we who are  more or less OK for now need to take the tenderest possible care of the more wounded people in the waiting room, until the healer comes. You sit with people, she said, you bring them juice and graham crackers.” From Traveling Mercies – Some Thoughts on Faith, by Anne Lamott

This is another good one: “You can describe the predicament that we’re in as an emergency, and your trial is to learn to be patient in an emergency.” – Wendell Berry

“Patience is the ability to hang in there with feelings that appear to be going nowhere.” ~ Miriam Greenspan

Drycleaning

Conventional dry-cleaners use really toxic stuff (perchlorethylene). Unless they don’t (they will make it clear if they don’t). But you need to check. Otherwise, you bring home toxic chemicals that will then be circulating in the air in your home. Who wants that? Info here.

Experts

I really don’t like the term “expert.” So many supposed experts are people being paid to spout a particular agenda (& thus, cannot be trusted). Understand: I know quite a few really smart people. They tend to be pretty modest, most of them, about their knowledge (the women, especially!). I think a little modesty is a good thing! If you know really a lot about something, & tell the truth, you’re liable to be considered credible. Maybe that’s enough. Maybe we don’t really need to think of ourselves (or others) as “experts.” Modesty is good. Authenticity, too. Phoneyness? Pretension? Not so much.

Fabric softener!

A PhD scientist I know informed me years ago now that fabric softener is actually really toxic (contains neurotoxins!). Dryer sheets are a bit nasty too, from what I gather. There are Web sites where you can learn about this stuff, & about alternatives to their use. I recommend doing this. Learning, I mean. Hey, it’s for your own good! Here is one site for info of this nature.

Failure to connect the dots

Refusal to connect the dots? I recently heard a scientist discussing infertility among beetles. How climate change is likely causing this. Then he says he’s hopping on a plane to go to Norway to do more study. A failure to connect the dots, wouldn’t you say?? (This scientist is, of course, not alone in failing to connect the dots! Almost everybody I know fails to connect the dots when it is personally inconvenient to do so. I reckon this is pretty much exactly how we wound up here. 🙁 )

“So convenient a thing it is to be a reasonable creature, since it enables one to find or make a reason for everything one has a mind to do.” – Benjamin Franklin

Fake News

We hear a lot about this lately. Truly, life gets a bit dizzying with all the competing, conflicting things we hear these daze. (Some news agencies speak soooo authoritatively, it’s easy to just buy into whatever they’re saying). I can recommend these few items to tell you more about how various organizations or entities are manipulating the public with their take on “fake news.”

(See also Media, & Spin)

Fake News.jpg

Families

Wow. Families. What can I say? I grew up in a very dysfunctional one, then went right on to (eventually) create a dysfunctional one for my own children. Sigh. Really sucks, eh? I wish more of us would try a little harder to create families that are loving & do not do tons of damage to the little people. But then, I’ve always been a bit of a dreamer. (& hey! Dysfunctional families, dysfunctional world, hmmmm?)

Fear-mongering (& flu)

Much in our culture seems to be about fear-mongering. I’ve heard it said that we’ve lived in a fear-based culture for millennia. Patriarchies are fear-based, by definition … wouldn’t you say? Women (&/or people of lower caste/unpopular races/religions/cultures) are afraid we’re not really worth diddly-squat – not good enough, not valued (if we assert that we are, we may get burned at the stake!); men are afraid they’re going to get shoved out of the line – off “the team” – by whoever the current boss/guru/despot is. (Some see religion as fear-based, & I’d say that idea makes sense.) I don’t own a TV, but when I see one somewhere when I’m out & about, am simply buffaloed at all the bad news passing across those “news” screens. If there isn’t enough “bad news” happening locally, it seems, it will be hauled in from across the world! Bus crash in Lower Slobovia. Whatever! Another example of fear-mongering comes from our “health care” system: over-the-top (& not remotely fact-based ) over-promotion of flu shots. Even at grocery stores! The CDC (a U.S. agency too many of us have come to rely on when it comes to health matters; more I could say on that, but I will restrain myself) literally has a powerpoint presentation they have used in which they provide tips on creating fear about flu, in order to increase uptake of flu shots. (The CDC presentation is here.) We really need to develop some skepticism about the fear-mongering! Yes, the state of the world IS frightful; you’ll get no argument from me there! It is terrifying & horrifying in many ways, to be sure. There are liars & manipulators & much corruption all around; 30 years of activism have certainly taught me the deep truth of that! All I’m trying to convey is that we need to be strong & not cave to the many people/agencies wishing to keep us super-easy to manipulate in our fearfulness. (If we’re paralyzed by fear, we won’t have the courage to stand up & speak out when we really need to, will we??)

Fluoride

Forests & trees

I am just plain crazy about trees! I mean, what is not to like about trees?? & forests? Winston Churchill said “Fancy cutting down all these beautiful trees…to make pulp for those bloody newspapers, and calling it civilization.” I took part in some forest protests in Temagami in the 1990s & early 2000s. Not only have I never once regretted doing that, my involvement was fun, & made me feel grrrrrreat. 🙂🙂🙂. I am proud to have been involved.

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Friendship

It’s like oxygen! Joanna Macy once said that telling the truth is like “making oxygen.” I think friendship is so essential to life that it’s like oxygen too. I do know how valuable my friendships are to me. Indescribably so – definitely more than I can really articulate.

Glyphosate

Glyphosate, often sold under the brand name “Roundup,” is the most widely used weed killer in the U.S. Glyphosate is a “non-selective herbicide,” which means it kills many plants, not just weeds. It kills them by interfering with the production of critical proteins necessary for growth.” “In a series of articles, my colleague Anthony Samsel and I have been exploring the connection between glyphosate and a number of diseases, including multiple sclerosis, autism, Alzheimer’s disease, and cancer.” – these quotes from MIT’s Dr. Stephanie Seneff in ‘Weeding Out Vaccine Toxins: MMR, Glyphosate, and the Health of a Generation. (Dr. Seneff’s Web site has simply GOBS of published papers on this subject.) You can also go to the Children’s Health Defense site, scroll down right to the bottom & put “glyphosate” in the Search bar to find plenty of relevant info there. Here is another relevant item: Glyphosate + Aluminum + Mercury = Autisma lecture by Dr. Stephanie Seneff, on YouTube (January 2018). Trust me – you need to know about glyphosate. We all do! (1 more item here.) I also recommend this episode of Highwire. The section on GMOs/glyphosate starts about 50 minutes in.

GMOs (Genetically Modified Organisms)

I am not a fan of genetically-modified foods. Took me too long to look into this issue (too busy focusing on nukes. 🙁) Now I look for the GMO-free label on foods… & buy organic, as previously referenced. This issue seems to me worth digging into. There are several documentaries you can watch to learn more. One recent film you can watch on-line is Secret Ingredients. Also, check out this group/Web site. I saw the documentary Modified at a theatre last year (I recommend watching the 2-minute trailer for a very quick education about GMOs, our food, & who benefits from the genetic modification of plants). In 2017 I watched a series called ‘GMOs Revealed & am very glad I did! Finally, there is a documentary called Genetically Modified Children that I will emphasize I have not watched, because I don’t think I would still be standing by the end of it. You may want to check it out. Or not. Your call!

Government

I think most governments suck. Really, really (really) bad. I think in general the agenda is not at all about looking after their citizens well, it’s about using power to help line one’s own pockets & the pockets of one’s corporate cronies. It’s about power. Not people. Took me far too many years to fully grasp this. Sigh. (See also Gullibility, below.) Kurt Vonnegut had a character in his novel Jailbird say “Anarchists are people who believe with all their hearts that governments are enemies of their own people.” Works for me!

Gratitude

I write about gratitude a lot – ‘cos learning to practice it (actively) transformed my life at a time when I was very much in need of a little help. Rather than repeat myself, consider checking out this page, which has many great quotations (& some postings) about gratitude.

Grief

I think there’s plenty of grief to go around these days … in these ever-more-challenging, dizzying times. I’ve written about grief a # of times, & some of the postings have some pretty good resources listed/linked in them. Check ‘em out! (In the Collections posting.)

Grief work needed.jpg

Gullibility / Naivete

See above! I was gullible & naïve about governments (& corporations) for far too long. Even though I’ve long been an activist, I see now that I was too slow to connect the dots about how deeply uncaring & untrustworthy governments & corporations (& many of the people involved in politics/government/bureaucracies/business) really are. However, I do believe that being gullible is more or less human nature. I think we’re born naïve & gullible. Easy to fool and manipulate. Just human evolution, I guess. We’re born into the hands of people we have no choice but to trust, hmmm? And they, & the culture we’re embedded in, can really muck us up but good. 🙁 Sigh. (Talk about understatements. Yikes.) I repeat what I say almost like a mantra, now.

#QuestionEverything!

“Being ignorant is not so much a shame, as being unwilling to learn.” – Benjamin Franklin (quoted in Thimerosal – Let the Science Speak, edited by Robert F. Kennedy Jr.)

“To learn who rules over you, simply find out who you are not allowed to criticize.” – Voltaire

“Health care”

These words are in quotation marks for a reason! Over the years & decades, I’ve learned to trust the health care system less & less & less. I now view it as primarily a pharmaceutical delivery system. I wish I did not feel obliged to take such a dim view of it … but there it is. Reading the book Should I be tested for cancer? Maybe not & here’s why, by H. Gilbert Welch, MD, was very helpful to me – life-changing, I’d say. I was already skeptical about mammograms, for example (skepticism about mammography is entirely warranted), & this book helped me solidify some suspicions I’d had for quite a few years about our over-reliance on fancy machines, fancy tests & technologies. (And our under-reliance on common sense & the need to work to strengthen our own immune systems.) Vaccines, now that I’ve learned so much about them, have been the final nail in the coffin. I now believe we must each be in charge of our own health care – not slavishly hand ourselves over to “the white coats” to tell us what medication/vaccination we desperately need to be taking this day/week/month/year, just ‘cos we happened to walk through some doctor’s door. (See also Cancer.) If you want to understand how the “health care” system went off the rails a very long time ago, I really recommend that you watch the first episode of the series The Truth About Cancer.

Health: mine: what I do to maintain it

I avoid aluminum in deodorant (addressed 20 minutes in, in this Dr. Chris Exley lecture but did you know there is aluminum in baking powder? Unless you buy aluminum-free baking powder, which I have done for decades … but what about baked goods you buy??), chemicals in food, perfume, toxics in laundry detergent/fabric softener/dryer sheets/dish detergent/shampoo & other personal care products. I eat organic food & now watch for the GMO-free label. I have an apple every day (organic, of course!) & make sure to eat a decent quantity of vegetables (also organic). I minimize my consumption of processed foods. I’ve been vegetarian & not vegetarian by turns, for decades. (It occurred to me decades ago now, I guess, that all the planet’s bodies of water are polluted. Therefore, how clean can the critters in it be? Very little fish consumption since I put those dots together.)

I avoid unnecessary antibiotics/minor surgeries/procedures (prompted by some life experiences & learnings, and reading Should I be tested for cancer? Maybe not & here’s why, by H. Gilbert Welch, MD).

For exercise (& sanity! 🙂) I walk regularly. Since I walk fast, I sweat. Sweating helps remove toxins from my body, so this is pretty much a win-win-win. I avoid talking on cell phones (though I own one, I use it minimally), & don’t own a microwave oven (I am long not a fan of microwaved food, based on information I ran across a long time back). I use wireless Internet when possible, turn off my modem when not in use, don’t have a clock radio with that bright time display in my bedroom. I learned to do all these things over time. Didn’t happen overnight.

I’m always open to learning new things, learning more. My skeptical (i.e., open to learning) attitude is likely good for my health! (This site can be helpful, though it does not cover all health issues or all key prevention strategies.)

My activism has also been good for my health! It has taught me the value of questioning, & always being willing to study and learn new things.

Heartbreak / Suffering

I believe we all suffer, & all experience heartbreak. I know I do, & have. More heartbreaks than I care to enumerate. Plenty of scars! I think plain old conversation & human contact have the potential to be tremendously healing. I really believe there is a special power in saying things out loud. And as I heard somewhere recently (though I can’t remember where 🙁), “If it is mentionable, it is manageable.” Holding our pain & suffering down does not heal it. For some, the denial of these feelings makes for pressure cooker blow-outs from time to time. Better to talk, I think, & begin some healing. (Anne Lamott’s book Stitches – A Handbook on Meaning, Hope and Repair is rather lovely. One need not share Ms. Lamott’s religious faith to find her words a great comfort.)

Heavy Metals

such as arsenic, cadmium, chromium, lead, and mercury do not belong in the human body – yet sadly, there they are. This item from a U.S. government agency speaks to that fact. A very interesting book called Crooked – Man-Made Disease Explained looks back in history & suggests that the practitioners of medicine have been employing the use of heavy metals (e.g. mercury) going back to the early 1800s. (There are YouTubes both short & long about his theory. It’s fascinating! Also, an interview here.)

History

History books lie. “History” is really about the “winners” telling their version of what happened as they ran all over the Earth raping & pillaging & making war & either badmouthing the “losers” or doing their level best to outright wipe out the ones they couldn’t be bothered to enslave. I sincerely hope history is being taught better in school these daze than it was during my time. What a crock most of what I was taught was!

How to cope with it all?

Now there’s a good question! Here are a few suggestions. Nature is super healing. Get yourself outside daily, if at all possible. Take walks, swims, skis …. whatever. Just be out in it! Wherever you happen to live. (Even cities have parks. Boardwalks. Small bits of “forest” in some of the larger parks.)

Nature+Therapy.jpg

I recommend working to maintain a present moment focus: this takes endless practice! A constant challenge & discipline.

You can remind yourself often, Be. Here. Now. And breathe! & remind yourself, as I do frequently, “I don’t have to figure that out right now” (Whatever “that” may be. If you do have to figure it out now, fine. Do! But leave alone stuff you need not figure out – or obsess over – in the present moment). Yoga & meditation are likely good sanity-inducers: many of my friends swear by both. (I don’t do either, but I do walk often!). I enjoy watching Eckhart Tolle YouTubes like this one & that, & also enjoy Alan Watts YouTubes – like this one (I could listen to AW all day long). Or Mooji, or whoever it is who reminds you to Be.Here.Now & love people & Be. Kind & all that good stuff.

Don’t panic! (& maybe read amusing novels, such as The Hitch-Hikers Guide to the Galaxy, from which I’ve just lifted the phrase Don’t Panic. I’m enjoying many chuckles at both its deep silliness & its amusing insights about life on Planet Earth.)

Insanity

I think insanity is pretty relative. All my relatives have it! Okay. Just being silly here. 🙂 Seriously, I do now think insanity is not what most of us have always believed it to be. I also think trashing the planet the way our species has done is insane. Just sayin.’ (Basically, what I really mean here is, I believe our species is insane. There may be pockets of sanity, individuals who are saner than not, but Modern Man has been doing his level best for … millennia now?? To wipe out those pockets. See History, above.)

“What sane person could live in this world and not be crazy?” – Ursula K. LeGuin

“It is good to realize that falling apart is not such a bad thing. Indeed, it is as essential to evolutionary and psychological transformation as the cracking of outgrown shells.” Joanna Macy in World as Lover, World as Self Courage for Global Justice and Ecological Renewal

“It is not a sign of good health to be well adjusted to a sick society.” – J. Krishnamurti

Jellyfish!

I ran across this item about jellyfish & nukes recently. What gave me a chuckle was this: It says “Jellyfish have been around for at least 500 million years — they’re older than dinosaurs and even trees. Science writer Juli Berwald calls them “ghosts from the true garden of Eden.” “An intelligence of a sort has allowed them to make it through the millennia,” she says.” Which means, essentially, that jellyfish have intelligence superior to that of humans. That just tickles my funny bone! 🙂

Karma

What karma means to me is, if I/we behave in good ways, good things tend to flow my/our way. If I am a generous person in the world, good things tend to come my way. This is not some mathematical equation. It’s just another way of saying “What goes around, comes around.” I believe I am somewhat naturally inclined to be a decent person. (Wiring? Who can say?) I do find that I am rewarded by forming gratifying relationships with friends & colleagues. It’s rather lovely. Many cool things happen in my life, as a result. I am very grateful. (I am not a moron, & I know that many people suffer hugely on our planet. Many-many-many. Hugely. Nothing whatsoever to do with “deserving.” I know that I am incredibly, insanely, wildly blessed.) Here are some Eckhart Tolle thoughts on karma.

Kool-Aid

In my view, we humans swallow one hell of a lot of “Kool-Aid.” From Day 1 on, pretty much. I wrote about that here. (For those who don’t know why some of us speak of swallowing Kool-Aid, you might find this item about the Jonestown massacre story interesting.)

Lead

After many years of activism on a variety of issues, I wound up doing some digging into the lead issue. That one alone could make a person go off the rails. No kidding. I wrote quite a bit about it – all gathered up in the Collections posting under the heading … wait for it… Lead. (Yes. Lead is still an issue.)

Lies / Liars / Lying

I think I’ve already revealed that I feel pretty much sickened by the amount of lying that takes place on our planet. I gather we are born with an inborn sense of justice (so I heard someone say recently, I believe it was Tanya Talaga, here. Her assertion immediately resonated for me). I seem to have retained mine. Injustice & lies infuriate me. I’m one of those kooky people who, as the singer Annie Lennox once said, is “proud to be counted as one of the lunatic idealists who passionately endorse the notion of a better, safer, kinder world.” There are lots of great quotations about truth (& a few about lies, as well) here.

Looking Good

It can be argued that an obsession with “looking good” fuels much (if not all) human behaviour on Planet Earth. I wrote this item about that in 2006, after a self-help workshop I’d attended that provided me with some pretty helpful insights about my own self, & the world. 

Media (Mainstream Media, or MSM)

They lie to us all the time (not JUST mainstream ones, I might add). Sometimes they tell outright whoppers. Most often, I think, they lie by omission – by neglecting to tell us the actual or whole story. Or to give us truly unbiased news – preferring to follow very carefully the preferences of their major advertisers. If Big Pharma advertises in the publication or media outlet/TV station, they simply will not publish items that make Big Pharma look bad. Or nukes. Whoever their major advertisers are. It’s as simple as this: you don’t bite the hand that feeds you. Right? QED. Here is one helpful item on this topic. (There is plenty more on the media blackout vis-à-vis vaccines in another A – Z posting.) And, see also Fake News & Spin.

Media Domination.jpg

“The dumbing down of American is most evident in the slow decay of substantive content in the enormously influential media, the 30 second sound bites (now down to 10 seconds or less), lowest common denominator programming, credulous presentations on pseudoscience and superstition, but especially a kind of celebration of ignorance.” – Carl Sagan, The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark

Men

See insights elsewhere on this blog:

I have to say I think John Gray (the Mars & Venus guy) was right: men & women might as well be from different planets.

Mercury

It’s a horrid heavy metal. Dangerous even in trace amounts. Still in (some) flu shots (even ones given to pregnant women!) & some medical products. My mouth is full of it (old fillings), & I passed a boatload of my own life load of it to my firstborn in utero. Human beings have known of this metal’s toxicity for thousands of years! (They used to get disposable slaves to mine it, way back in Roman times. Meaning, its toxicity has long been no secret.) Can you see why I get so cheesed off about things? Geez. 🙁 🙁 (See Insanity, above.)

Monsanto

The corporation from Hell (well, one of them). Not going to go into it except to say if you read the sections (above) about GMOs & glyphosate, you will come across Monsanto, now owned by Bayer. Corruption so far up the wazoo, a person does not know where to begin. Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. led a lawsuit against them (also here) & wins!

Mystery

There is an awful lot of mystery in our lives/this life/Life.

“Men honour what lives within their sphere of knowledge, but do not realize how dependent they are on what lies beyond it.” – Chuang-tse (quoted in The Te of Piglet, by Benjamin Hoff)

There’s just so much we are not “in charge of,” don’t understand, & maybe ought to be a little humble about … hmmmm? (Some of us, I suppose, put the name “God” on that. I just call it Mystery, with a capital M.)

Near-term human extinction (NTE or NTHE)

More of us all the time are convinced our that our species is “toast.”

Toast.jpg

Maybe a tad sooner rather than an awful lot later. I’ve written about this topic quite a bit in the past several years. Many of those items are linked to in this Collections posting.

Since contemplating a thing this … well, kind of huge, can make one pretty sad, I also write about grief sometimes. & also occasional “what to do now” musings. These are also in that Collections posting.

I guess I ought to add this: It’s kind of a big deal that our species seems to be on the fast track to extinction (at least to us!). One can get used to the idea, though. Many of us have done so. Not to imply that there isn’t grief & heartbreak involved; there certainly is! But I suppose it is similar to accepting that a person one loves, who has a terminal diagnosis of cancer, say, will die in the not-too-distant future. It puts things in a new perspective. It causes you to stop taking things (& life) for granted. Paradoxically, this can make you feel more alive! To be sure, it leads to your asking yourself: “Okay. What are my priorities NOW, in the face of this difficult knowledge?” & that is perhaps a useful thing. (You can find some useful quotations about NTE here, & some helpful resources here. Graphics here. Also, some of my own musings in the Collections posting.)

Sagan on extinction.jpg

Nukes

Nukes have been one of my obsessions for quite a few years. I read John Hersey’s book Hiroshima way back in my university days. I don’t really even feel like talking about the topic anymore, to be honest. I think it’s burned a toxic hole in my psyche. For a fabulous collection of quotations about nukes, go here. Read ‘em & weep.

Organic Food

Been eating organic for decades. Just makes sense to me, to eat food that is not laced with chemicals. No-brainer, if you ask me. Costly, you say? Well, I’ve always considered my health (& my family’s health) worth investing in. Helpful info here.

Ozone Layer

My main thoughts on this topic are covered in the posting Chemtrails, the Ozone Layer … & simple common sense (for the record, I started paying attention to the ozone layer issue in the early 1990s, when my children were still young). If you have assumed (as many have) that the ozone layer problem has been “fixed” (so we have been told, of course), I ask you to contemplate these questions: Why does the sun feel so incredibly burning hot sometimes? (even in the winter). Why, if the problem has been fixed, do we still hear UV ratings on weather forecasts? & why are we still being told to wear sunscreen? (lots more in that posting I mentioned)

Patriarchy

I used to muse on patriarchy quite a lot. Wrote about it too. There’s a whole section on the topic in the Collections posting. If I had to name one thing that I believe has led to humanity’s current predicamentthe great big granddaddy problem of them all (all those “unintended consequences” that have led us to where we now sit, teetering on the edge of extinction) it would likely be patriarchy. Sigh. 🙁

Pedestals

I strongly recommend refraining from putting people (or families or movements or organizations) on pedestals. I’ve written about that here, & more recently here Science. Scientists. Scientism. Pedestals. Religion, too. & cherry-picking. Very recently I harvested this quotation: “Anyone who idolizes you is going to hate you when he discovers that you are fallible. He never forgives. He has deceived himself, and he blames you for it” (Elbert Hubbard) & thought “Wow. Yup. The person eventually falls off, & I feel pissed off. Yet it was I who elevated the person in the first place! Been there, done that.” #No.More.Pedestals.

Pharmaceutical industry

I hate it. ‘Vaccines Safe Say Those Who Gave Us Vioxx, Bextra, Baycol, Trovan, Phen-Fen, Xarelto, Raxar, Seldane’ … (& thalidomide. Let us please never forget thalidomide.) You can’t trust this industry one single, teeny-tiny bit. & they basically control politicians all over the globe. Yup. It’s sick. Sick sick sick sick sick. (Connecting the dots is sooooo important, as I believe I have referenced. Vaccines are made by the pharmaceutical industry. Please, people, for the love of … whatever … #Follow.The.Freaking.Money) See also Vaccines.

Psychopaths

I’ve written about psychopaths a few times. Most recently here. Chris Hedges wrote some years back about ‘The Careerists.’ No doubt some of those “careerists” are psychopaths.

World run by psychopaths.jpg

Quotations

How I love ‘em! Be sure to visit Quotation Central & scroll through the list on the right-hand side of the page! (I have tons more collected in very disorganized fashion in a 157-page Word document I’ve been keeping for more years than I can remember. One could get lost there for quite some time. Occasionally, I do! 🙂)

Racism

I’ve heard that “race” is basically a non-thing. Look it up! All I know is, nothing seems more pointless & absurd to me than racism. Classism. Dismissing any entire grouping of people based on some stupid stereotype. Lordy. Get over it, humans!

 “No matter how far you’ve gone down a wrong road, TURN BACK!” – Source unknown

“RegulatorY” Agencies

Do you know what is meant by this?

There are “regulatory agencies” that purport to regulate the activities of corporations in a variety of industries. The pesticide/chemical industry. The nuclear industry. The pharmaceutical industry. Fossil fuel industry. To name a few.

I’ve done activist work in each of these spheres over the years, & what I have learned (painfully, & much too slowly) is that these are ALL regulators in name only.

In each case, the so-called “regulator” is entirely a captive of the industry it purports to regulate.

I don’t know how to convince readers of this if they have no experience in activism. No easy items to link you to. (If I find some I will link to them later!)

What I do know, from activist work on pesticides & nukes, is that the federal government agencies we rely upon to regulate the pesticide/chemical industries, are no more regulators than your cute little puppy dog is.

In fact, in the nuclear sphere, our Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (an oxymoron of monumental proportions) has long been described as more of a lap dog than a watch dog.

Well, it’s the same darn thing with pharmaceuticals/vaccines, too. (& yes, readers: vaccines are produced by the pharmaceutical industry.)

All the supposed regulators are just rubber-stamp agencies for industry. (See also Trojan horses.)

Religion

I am going to be very understated here, & merely politely say that I am not a fan of organized religion. This has been the case for me for a long time now. I like what Elizabeth Lesser said about religion in her wonderful book Marrow – Love, Loss, and What Matters Most :

“What I’m beginning to understand is how much easier it is to think about things like love, peace, and truth, or to read about them, or tell other people about them, than it is to actually do or be them. To actually put into action what Dr. King called “the practical art of living in harmony.” It’s remarkable the lengths we will go to turn a plain message into a complicated theory. Jesus preached the most pared-down, dirt-simple kind of truth, and then a bunch of theoretical thinkers messed with it and turned his words into a religion with rules and punishments and things to memorize and get dressed up for. Same with other saints and prophets from every religion – their words are basic, but we humans go through all sorts of convoluted maneuvers to metabolize their wisdom.”

I wrote a few other items about religion, some years back. They can be found in the Collections posting, under R for Religion.

Rules

Rules can be very tiresome. We need some rules, we humans; of course! But I know too many people who have far too many rules. That’s my take, anyway. Control freakism just makes me tired.

Science-denying scientists!

There’s more of that about, likely, than you know! Scientists who support vaccines, for example, in an utterly knee-jerk, unquestioning way. Not merely unfamiliar with the recent science on, say, aluminum adjuvants & immune activation – but also utterly unwilling to even contemplate that questioning vaccines is a very pro-science position to take. (Pretty shocking, considering that questioning everything is a very pro-science position!) But I’ve heard it said recently that science these days has been largely perverted by industry, & has gone over to the Dark Side. Check out these quotations if you don’t believe me. If you have not been paying much attention, you’re liable to get some surprises!

Self-Loathing

I think self-loathing is an epidemic ailment that many or most folks likely don’t even realize they suffer from. Its origins lie deep in our genes, I suspect, going back millennia, maybe, to the days when we began to divorce ourselves from the Earth, from Nature. Sigh … eh? Advertising & fear-mongering & the mania to “keep up with the Joneses” really have a field day with us. I, of course, have my own load of it to rassle with. I’m doing better with it, as the years go by & I get to know & understand myself (& our insane culture) more deeply. Delicate balancing act, though. We want to stop hating ourselves, but without becoming self-absorbed narcissists. A lifetime’s work, perhaps.

Sex

Kurt Vonnegut said in a speech one time, “Let us face it: an Earthling’s sense of humor and fascination with sex makes it impossible for him or her to concentrate seriously on anything, even his or her survival, for more than an hour at a time.” (You can find the speech here.)

Social Skills

Some of us have good ones; some of us could use a little help. I wrote a piece called Social Skills 101 several years back. Might still be useful.

Snopes

Not reliable. Look it up. Snopes has its own agenda, & truth does not appear to be a part of that. Here are a few links on the topic. You can do a Search on your own & find out that it’s an organization, or entity, with its very own brand of spin. Bought & paid for.

Spin

We all put “spin” on everything we say or do, I suppose, really. We each see the world in our own unique way. (As I once wrote, there are really 7 billion ways of seeing & interpreting the world. We each have our own! Our own DNA, genetic heritage, life experiences; wounds. This means we put our own filters, or spin, on pretty much everything.) I include this topic just to say that a very good deal of what we hear, & put credence in, is merely the spin of some corporation or agency that has its own particular agenda. Watch out for the spin (& the fear-mongering), is all I’m saying. (See also Fake News) Be skeptical! Skepticism means questioning things. I am wholly in favour of skepticism & questioning. Helps a lot to always be sure to ask this question: Who stands to gain here? & to always – always, always, always! be sure & #Follow. The. Money.  (This 10-minute YouTube covers this rather nicely. Also covers why Wikipedia is not a neutral news source.)­­

“For the great enemy of truth is very often not the lie – deliberate, contrived, and dishonest – but the myth – persistent, persuasive, and unrealistic. Too often we hold fast to the clichés of our forbears. We subject all facts to a prefabricated set of interpretations. We enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought.” – John F. Kennedy

“One of the saddest lessons of history is this: If we’ve been bamboozled long enough, we tend to reject any evidence of the bamboozle. We’re no longer interested in finding out the truth. The bamboozle has captured us. It’s simply too painful to acknowledge, even to ourselves, that we’ve been taken. Once you give a charlatan power over you, you almost never get it back.” – Carl Sagan, The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark  

Systems

They’re all broken. Criminal justice, economic, educational, legal, political, religious. Reckon they’ve been broken for a long while, now. Earth systems breaking down also (possibly in exponential fashion, now). I think it is not a coincidence that as we have distanced ourselves from Nature (this goes back many thousands of years) more & more, polluted & pillaged more & more from the Earth, family life too has become fractured & often broken. Maybe it’s all just entropy. Shit breaks down. Of course, it will break down really fast if you take sledgehammers to it, won’t it?

The Four Agreements

I read the book The Four Agreements many years ago, & still consider it an outstandingly insightful one. The agreements are simple, but profound, eminently helpful and sensible. To me, anyway.

4 Agreements.jpg

Trojan Horses

“Most, if not all, provincial and state departments of fish and game are little more than Trojan horses of the sport-killer lobby.”

So said Farley Mowat in the preface to Never Cry Wolf (published in 1968). I am only sorry I was not reminded of this quotation sooner. (I read the book eons ago, but only re-read it recently). The Trojan horse image is very helpful. ALL government departments are Trojan horses for one industry or another. Certainly health departments are nothing more than Trojan horses for the pharmaceutical industry! Find yourself a brochure from a health organization’s conference & turn to the pages that list sponsors. Bingo! Pharmaceutical industry all the way! (An additional Trojan horse item: Dr. Suzanne Humphries going into minute detail regarding how the aluminum in vaccines can be likened to “Trojan horses & cluster bombs.”)

Trust

I’m not sure what could be more important than trust. I am very grateful to have people in my life I can trust, & people who trust me. 🙂 (As previously established, in my view corporations and governments/bureaucracies are largely not to be trusted. Sadly. 🙁) One thing I advise folks NOT to trust, is sound bites. What I now call “sound bite science.” Issues are complex! Complex issues cannot be summarized or explained in quick, simple sound bites. Be skeptical of those who try to convince you with a few simple sound bites.

Truth

Elizabeth Cady Stanton said

“Truth is the only safe ground to stand on.”  

Which makes eminent sense to me.

There are many great quotations about truth here.

One of my truths? As an active activist for 3 decades + now, & having dived in on a whole gamut of issues over these decades, I’ve learned more truth than is probably even good for a person. It has all blown my mind, broken my heart (repeatedly. Over & over & over again). I know so much truth, now, about toxics, lead, nukes (i.e., the military-industrial complex), pesticides, climate change, & vaccines, that some days, I really don’t know how to deal with it all. Most folks I know don’t really want to know a fraction of what I know. & truthfully, at times I kinda wish I didn’t know it, either 🙁.

It can be … difficult, knowing so much awful stuff. So. Please be patient with me!

Vaccines

After 63 years of not paying any attention whatsoever to the vaccine issue (to my now-considerable regret & shame), it sneaked right up on me a few years ago now & jumped right down my back. Stunned, I was! I’ve now written lots about it (the postings all - or most - listed on the right-hand side of the main page, under the Quotations, under the heading ‘On Vaccines.’) If you’re new to hearing that there really are issues with vaccines, maybe go for this one or, well, this one – or Got 12 minutes? or even the one called Vaccines: 6 Words … & also be sure to look over the collection of quotations about vaccines (many of them from MDs). (See also Pharmaceutical Industry.) Why You Can’t Trust the CDC on Vaccines. I have to add this: there are literally hundreds of things I could point to on this issue. There is science (plenty of it!), there are opinion pieces, documentaries, etc. TONS of information. Simply tons. I like this item a lot. The Emperor Has No Clothes. I also recommend the weekly TV series called Highwire. (Do a search on Highwire YouTube, & a wonderful selection will come up.)

The vaccine issue: far deeper, far more complex, than can be summarized in little sound bites .  We have to dig below the surface!

The vaccine issue: far deeper, far more complex, than can be summarized in little sound bites. We have to dig below the surface!

War

General Smedley Butler said “War is a racket.”

Sure seems bang on to me!

🙁  Such a helpful, packs-a-punch “cartoon,” eh??

🙁 Such a helpful, packs-a-punch “cartoon,” eh??

Wealth

I don’t think it really has a bloody thing to do with money. But then, on that score, I’ve long been pretty much out of step with most of the world.

White privilege

It sucks. (Any kind of un-earned privilege sucks. In my opinion.)

Who really runs things?

At the end of the Psychopaths posting are some links to pursue about how things really work on our lovely planet. By all means, skip it if you prefer!!

Zika Virus

I’m only adding this item ‘cos I promised an A – Z of topics. Truth in advertising, & all that … right? 🙂 I recommend that, if you are curious about Zika virus, you go to this posting, scroll down to the bottom, to the heading Zika Virus issue, & check out the links there.

RELAX - nothing is under control.jpg

a very few Relevant Quotations

I have way too many I could list. But these are good ones!

“While we may learn from the past, we don’t seem to learn much.” – Ronald Wright in A Short History of Progress

“Being ignorant is not so much a shame, as being unwilling to learn.” – Benjamin Franklin (quoted in Thimerosal – Let the Science Speak, edited by Robert F Kennedy, Jr.)

“To learn who rules over you, simply find out who you are not allowed to criticize.” – Voltaire

“For the great enemy of truth is very often not the lie – deliberate, contrived, and dishonest – but the myth – persistent, persuasive, and unrealistic. Too often we hold fast to the clichés of our forbears. We subject all facts to a prefabricated set of interpretations. We enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought.” – John F. Kennedy

“One of the saddest lessons of history is this: If we’ve been bamboozled long enough, we tend to reject any evidence of the bamboozle. We’re no longer interested in finding out the truth. The bamboozle has captured us. It’s simply too painful to acknowledge, even to ourselves, that we’ve been taken. Once you give a charlatan power over you, you almost never get it back.” – Carl Sagan, The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark  

“The dumbing down of American is most evident in the slow decay of substantive content in the enormously influential media, the 30 second sound bites (now down to 10 seconds or less), lowest common denominator programming, credulous presentations on pseudoscience and superstition, but especially a kind of celebration of ignorance.” – Carl Sagan, The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark

 “No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted.” – Aesop

“It is a mistake to look too far ahead. Only one link in the chain of Destiny can be handled at a time.” – Winston Churchill

 “If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world.” – J.R.R. Tolkien

“It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends upon his not understanding it.” – Upton Sinclair

“Only the small secrets need to be protected. The big ones are kept secret by public incredulity.” – Marshall McLuhan