Tuesday, January 24, 2012

addendum to my two cents-again

I am back with more frustration.

I wrote a poem in the early 80s called, "Withdrawal," It was a general rant about the political and economic conditions. There was a phrase "dropping out," a carry-over from the 60s, and it spoke to my feelings then. I would picture myself up north in Minnesota, some where by Lake Superior, breathing the fresh air, reading Emerson, and just being, "...safe in my sylvan home, I'll tread on the pride of Greece and Rome..." At the same time I was reveling within my imagination, their was a nagging thought of "copping out," another 60's carry-over phase. I could not step away from the feeling of responsibility I had for my family, neighborhood, city, and country, and the poem expressed that paradox. My great urge was to leave all that frustrated me behind and withdraw, but at the same time I felt a deep responsibility to stay put and work it out. Here is the poem:

I'm leaving behind the rest of my kind, and removing myself from the race.
I'm washing clean society's scene, and rinsing my mouth of bad taste;
Withdrawing from muzzled mouths, machine-gunning blanks words with each round;
From too polite salutations and too contrived departations;
From the printed accounts of gruesome, terrible crimes;
From the noise and the dirt and the slum and the grime,
I'm leaving this ocean of bullshit far, far behind.

As the earth spins in orbital glide, the sun shades its back and lights its front side.
Untolded lives end with the night, untolded lives begin with the light.
Life seems to float on a pool of extremes,
Flowing from best to worst or worst to best, with occasional levellings.

I'll not be swayed. I am determined to leave, and once gone there will be no weeping on
my shirt sleeve.
Withdrawing from an economic mutation: freeze enterprise, castlepolism, and presschasing
power; from increase the exports, decrease the imports, tariff davenports, duty free
whiskey quarts; from inflate the dollar, deflate its value, tax all the income-who is the victim?
From grow with the country-consume a T.V.; use a lawyer regularly to gain a 3% rate in G.N.P.
From inflation, taxation, and money orientation, I am taking leave of it all, and I'll burn my credit cards as a symbol of withdrawal.

As the earth spins in orbital glide, the sun shades its back and lights its front side.
Untolded lives end with the night, untolded lives begin with the light.
Life or death, dispositions of mind, where place the emphasis?
The decision is mine.

I'll not bend. My mind is made up. I'm withdrawing from a political circus that features
corrupt; from the codes and statutes obstructing my time; from the courts and their
justice, mentally blind; from the in-forms, the out-forms, the forms for forming forms, and the formed forms from forms. Take all the forms, roll into a wad then blast it into orbit and form a new moon.
I'm leaving. I tell you, and it isn't too soon.

As the earth spins in orbital glide, the sun shades its back and lights its front side.
Untolded lives end with the night, untolded lives begin with the light.
There are flowers that open full bloom to the sun, and close tight to the moon;
Accommodating the change of day in a most thoughtful way.

I'm leaving! and when I'm "safe in my sylvan home, I'll tread on the pride of Greece and Rome.
Safe I'll be, without ambiguity. Safe I'll be separate from society. Safe I'll be withdrawn from
that which annoys me.

Egad! I am a fool. To escape is mad. I am only accepting the good part of the world while
withdrawing from the bad.

I'll use flower wisdom: accept life's extremes, then accommodate the differences as my
awareness deems.

I am going to stay; mingle with my kind; accept all behavior as human and where I can,
adjust and refine.

You can see that the writing of my poem seemed to quite my frustration, but did not dispel it. I have learned to put the objects of my frustrations into fluid concepts, realizing that there is a dynamic process operating that shifts all things alone a circular path. For instance, if the liberal, political bar has current impetus and exuberance, it will not be long before the conservative, political bar will over take the liberal bar, with its own impetus and exuberance. The particular energy of one extreme has within itself the seed for the creation of its opposite, and as prescribed by nature, the wheel will also land at the center. There is an ancient Chinese symbol called Tai-Chi Tu (diagram of the supreme ultimate). It is a very common symbol and most people know it as the symbol of Yin and Yang. It is a precis symbol showing the movement of the principle of extremes and the inherent cosmic balance. So the best remedy to political frustration is patience. When the conservative have political dominance, their own energy will create impetus for their liberal replacement and visa, versa. Its inevitable!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

my two cents-again

Back in March 04, 2009, I wrote a blog entitled, "my two cents." Its intent was to relieve some of my frustration about the "great recession." Well my frustration has swollen again, and I am feeling the need to let some of it out.

What is troubling me is the ideas coming from the presidential candidates. With all of their professed experience and political wisdom I assumed they would understand more of the process of law making; especially since some candidates are or were members of Congress or governors. There seems to be no connection with the platforms they aspire to as a possible president and the process to enact their ideas. This is baffling to me. Also baffling to me, is that the guardians of our democracy, the press and we the people, let this pass without saying, 'Will your ideas be able to pass the 435 members of the House of Representatives. and the 100 members of the Senate?' With the entrenchment currently locking up our Congress, I believe that that question is vital, and to put a wobble into the mix, who really knows what the 2012 political make up of Congress will turn out to be. Yet, the candidates go on like their ideas will automatically become law merely on the strength of their vocal declarations. It seems that in their zeal to become president they unconsciously display their ignorance, and in like manner, our non-questioning displays our unconscious ignorance. Any ideas without the will to enact them are impotent.

Another troubling point comes from the candidates use of sarcasm and criticism. They seem to think that if they use sarcasm and criticism, on any level, it some how shows their wisdom, and of course, if they say these wise things, repeatedly in a sarcastic and critical tone they can sway the minds of the voters. The voters who hear these sarcastic and critical opinions over and over tend to use these opinions as "talking points" for arguments, and they can become strengthen when other people they relate to reinforce these opinions. It is my experience that a critic is not the wise man or woman. The critic is unconsciously exposing his low self-esteem and the accompanying crutch of arrogance. The sarcasm is used like an adjective providing an emotional power to his criticism. A wise man need not use criticism, because he washes all opinion through the strainer of his center of authority, his heart of hearts. He washes opinions clean, contemplating their validity, and either discards, accepts or rewashes them. Here is a suggestion in light of our discussion from Gautama the Buddha: "Do not accept something as true because of repeated hearings; nor because it is in scripture; nor because of logical arguments; nor because of philosophical reasoning; nor because it agrees with a preconceived idea; nor because of a person's seemingly ability; nor because it comes from your teacher."
"Be lamps unto yourselves. Betake yourselves to no external refuge. Hold fast to the truth, as a lamp."...

Here is a list of troubling ideas candidates say:

"The American people want this, that, and the other thing." When they say what American people want, they are not talking about all 35o,000,000 million of us. They are talking about what a relatively small minority of ideological sympathetic people want. What the majority of the American people want is, according to poles, for elected officials and corporate businesses to do their public and civic duties and find solutions to our country's domestic economic problems and bring economic justice for all.

" We must get government out of the way of business in order to grow our economy. Then the market forces can self-regulate our way back to economic health." The self-regulating markets are seen as some kind of mystic entity with omnipotent powers of balance. These markets are man made, and are therefore subject to the greed, hubris, and mistakes innate in the human condition. I do not know about you reader but my retirement account took a 50% decline, while it was in hands of the smartest money managers. I don't trust self-regulating markets.

"We are so many (put in your own percentages) away from the GDP before the "great recession." Using the GDP output of the middle 2000's as a bench mark goal for our economy to return to health, is insane. Why would we use a mark of high risk, closed eye regulation, and greed as an economic bench mark. Lets set realistic goals, sound goals set by healthy standards for the common wealth, in which to grow our economy.

Lastly, as a way of tribute, I like to hail the democratic movement for economic balance and justice coming from the "Occupy Wall Street-the 99%" group; especially those from the Oakland, Cal. area.