Monday, February 16, 2009

Great Opportunity to Redirect US Economy; Dumping the Tourist Economy

Times of turmoil and disorder are often ideal for instituting needed shifts in direction. US politicians have destroyed the economic infrastructure of the nation with their shady deals and inexplicable insistence to ship crucial US jobs to oppressed pools of cheap labor overseas. In other words, citizens are powerless and multi-national corporations are in charge and running the US into the ground with their greed and obsession with profit over purpose.

The US citizenry has got to start acting as a community and not cultural fragments all insisting on only their particular needs and desires. We all need food and shelter and jobs. We all want to be safe and not have our homes robbed. Nobody wants to be attacked physically or emotionally. Let's start there and modify the political approach of this nation.

I hear supporters of the status quo squeal about how important it is to have "experienced" leadership in the US Congress. Well, where has that "leadership" taken us in the last 30 years? I don't care if you're poor, what culture you exhibit, or your sexual preference, we all need to get on the same page before these banana republic dictator wannabes we have running this country destroy us all.

A sustainable national economy can't be based on waste. That approach is nothing more than painting oneself into a corner. I saw a recent article about the Las Vegas economy and was amazed to see the desire for people to waste money there. A healthy economy must be based on sustainability, not some crazy dream for the federal government to throw money around. Healthy and local food sources, existing shelter renovation and repair before new construction, repair before purchase on everything from vehicles to refrigerators, green technology with solar and hydroelectric, water purification and conservation and preservation. That's where the beginning is, not the same stale and broken promises for improved healthcare, education and jobs.

Free healthcare desn't mean much if one doesn't have any clean water to drink.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Bosu Trainer and home gym fitness equipment

Core training would be where I'd suggest anyone start with an exercise program. I believe that one reason my joints ache is that I don't have enough muscle structure to support them. The Bosu ball costs about $129, but is worth every dime, in my opinion. The professional version is what they have in gyms and can be bought through Amazon. For my "home gym", I have that and the Gold's stability ball, a jump rope, and 2.5 lb. ankle/wrist weights...everything but the Bosu ball is from Wal-Mart. The Bosu ball and the stability ball each have instructional CDs. That's all there is too it. You don't need treadmills, steppers, weight machines or anything else to get started.

Cantor Has Got to Go

The primary reason Representative Eric Cantor can not remain in a position of influence is that he provided too much support for the most extended assault on conservative values in history by a GOP-led US Congress. Change has to start with the leaders in place. It is impossible to have an improved GOP with the same faces that thrust us into torture, domestic spying and ruthless application of authoritarian domestic policy. It must not be tolerated. The GOP wants to merely pretend that none of it happened...that Boehner never got roller adn that Senator Shelby was too quiet for too long. The only consistent conservative voice among the GOP is the truly honorable Ron Paul, and the GOP, as it exists today, loves to make fun of him.

Matt Drudge's Faux Conservatism; As Soon As GOP Lost Power

I must have missed all of the Matt Drudge articles blasting G.W. Bush, John Boehner, Eric Cantor and all of the other hypocrites who eagerly dug America, and the world, into a deep and dark hole over the last 8 years. World Net Daily has been MIA in that regard also. Suddenly, those GOP shills have remembered the abandoned fiscal conservatives who now often despise the GOP for its icy betrayal of principle and honor. The GOP and their hacks in the media think the GOP can be elected back into power in a year or two. I believe they will be surprised.

The big change that all of the snake oil salesmen have forgotten about is the Internet. It's harder and harder to fool the younger generation, when all they have to do is read from those of us who learned the hard way, what the younger generations will discover in 20 years or so, that the political system in the US is corrupt past repair. Most of the citizenry is more than capable of working through hard times. The main problem is a small minority of corrupt citizens. We need to remember that Bush and the GOP lost in 2008, Obama didn't win. The GOP lost because they completely betrayed all truly conservative principles. Cantor, Boehner, and most of the guilty are now promising to behave. I see now where the GOP is praising Cantor for being the only jewish GOP person in the US House of Representatives. Is that all we care about now, quotas? The GOP is supposed to praise skill and qualifications over bigotry also. Just who runs the GOP? It sure as hell isn't conservative constituents.

Taking Out the Trash; Emotional Abuse

Dramatic change in one's life may come from the mere cessation of destructive behavior. Trust me, it can be much easier than the fake reality your abuser has created will allow you to believe. Their influence was so destructive that there was no other choice. What I am discovering is how as little as one month of no contact with that destructive influence has changed my life for the better. Even time away from them with minimal contact was a huge benefit. However, termination of all contact has produced immediate and shocking benefits. Negative responses from that stress were far more prevalent than I had thought. It has literally been decades since I have been this glad to be alive, and this motivated to survive. I can't recall feeling this refreshed and relaxed in 40 years. My immune system is incredibly strong, compared to a few months ago. Even physical wounds heal faster. I'm just much healthier, emotionally and physically. A trait of mine that I had completely forgotten about was how I liked to laugh and my sense of humor. I'm laughing and smiling again, a lot. It'd been so long since I had any humor or enjoyment. Everything was stifled, strictly regulated by my abusers.

A focused human spirit is a remarkable entity. It's stubbornness frustrates even the most intense attacks. There was a brief period of about 2-3 months where I had a version of Stockholm Syndrome and berated myself as disloyal and how I needed to try to return in some capacity to my previous "captors" to continue my support. Yeah, right. No more of that. *laughing*

It's incredible. I'll never go back. I have retained, despite my abusers' wishful thinking, all rights of my birth. I have some great ancestors and relatives. My abusers just made the choice to not be among them. They can't take my blood away from me. One weapon an abusive parent uses is that their blood is in your veins and you are the same as they are....another lie. Abusive parents make the choice to do what they do, just as the target can make the choice to escape.

I don't like posting personal stuff, but there could be someone reading who is still trapped. I think many are like I was, free to leave, but feeling obligated to stay. Obligated to what, being tortured for a lifetime?

GOP, Cantor Schizophrenia

I was reading where the GOP is trying to sell the suggestion that US House representative Eric Cantor is a fresh voice of change. Cantor is the same man who helped lead the descent deep into war in Iraq and every other twist and turn of that rabbit hole known as "policy" of former U.S. president G.W. Bush. We heard no objections from Cantor to reports of pallets of US cash being unloaded in Iraq, no objections to no-bid contracts to GOP operatives, and no objections to the still missing $8 billion US spending on the Iraq war. Cantor blatantly ignored constituent pleas to not pass the $900 billion TARP. Let's not forget that the US Congress tacked on $200 billion in extra spending to the bank bailout in apparent retaliation for constituent objections. The TARP bailout, contrary to recent reporting was still more expensive than the current Obama bailout.

I have personally contacted Cantor's office on several occasions during the first of many bailouts of irresponsible Wall Street firms. The response from Cantor's office was to junk mail me into submission. I received as many as 6-8 identical letters regarding different concerns. I went as far as to email his office information as to exactly what was wrong with TARP, which Cantor and others now say they had no way of knowing how bankers would abuse the bailout.

To put it as politely as possible, Cantor often does not tell the truth until forced into it. It is nothing less than disgusting for someone so contrary to the character of the great James Madison to constantly infer a positive similarity. The last time I checked, James Madison and many others of that day spent much of their own money, risked death and everything they owned to create what they thought was right. To the contrary, Cantor and almost every US politician of this day hide behind lies and half-truths while the only true effort they consistently make is to get themselves re-elected to highly levels of power and influence.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Obama Madness

President Obama has demonstrated that the failure of leadership in the United States involves more than just GOP politicians. The entire political machine of the US is miserably out of touch and out of control. All Obama is concerned with is the politics of being able to say what he did in the first 100 days. He's all politician and doesn't bring much hope to any but his own self interests. As citizens, we each have the responsibility to not only see to our own needs, but to educate ourselves on sustainable lifestyles for everyone.

The first solution is to admit that globalism and the exportation of jobs from industrialized nations of the western hemisphere to poor countries is not sustainable. It's not even a long term benefit to the developing country as the US can not maintain its role as strictly a consumer nation. the whole strategy is flawed and eventually disastrous.

Working it out.

Although I am recovering from what I hope is a brief setback from an injury, I have begun a journey to a level of physical fitness that I have never experienced before. Frankly, the discovery and it's potential is worth the risk of injury.

My personal trainer is an energetic woman whose zest for life is contagious. Along with the toughness and discipline a personal trainer needs, my trainer is also one of the more compassionate persons I have had to pleasure to meet. She is extremely talented at her work. It is the best money I have ever spent. As far as the money, people spend more money on video games and junk food than what it cost for these sessions. It's not what you have, but how you use it, really.

Friday, February 6, 2009

H. H. the Dalai Lama: How to See Yourself As You Really Are

A funny thing happened while I was getting my truck worked on today...

The whole story started last night at the gym, with me forgetting my workout sheet and having to go back after dark to get it. That sheet had all of the workout notes that I needed to do the session on my own. "Sarge", what my personal trainer jokingly calls herself from time to time, would not have been pleased if that sheet was lost. My head was spinning with endorphins and I was focusing on stretching out and staying hydrated so I would be less sore. My mind just blipped and I didn't put the sheet in my pack. It was on a table by the gym floor station. This set up the series of events that followed, and ended up marking an important re-emergence in my life. One more major step to recovery.

On the way back home, the left front tire on my truck shredded from dry rot. It was on my "to do" list, but I messed up. So, in about 5 seconds I go from being 5 minutes from home to being stranded in the dark on a twisty country road, in frigid weather. One guy turned around to make sure I was OK and had a cell phone, good man. I had nothing available for the repair, more of that "to do" list, but at least I wasn't so negligent as to not have some cash, plenty of gas for heat and a charged cell phone. If I hadn't gone back for my workout sheet, the tire would probably have not blown out at lower speed and where I had room to get off of the road. It would have also probably been light and actually harder to see my flashing hazard lights. The whole scenario would have been more risky. Controlled chaos was what I experienced.

The road service people were decent locals and I was back on the road in about an hour. The odd part was the gentle nature of the tire failure and the fact that I was almost delivered precisely to one of the very few places on that road to avoid getting rear ended on a blind curve. If I had to pick a place myself, I couldn't have done much better. That wasn't just luck. Luck is more random than that. This was an organized and sequential series of events that led to an important realization about my life direction.

At the repair shop...
Being on a Friday, the shop was swamped with work, so I spent the whole day getting two new tires for the front and getting my snow treads transferred to some original rims, and getting the spare checked. They did a good job and the price wasn't that bad. I'd gone to the place years ago, but it was under new management. They delivered what I paid for. Besides that, the shop folks were decent local people who spoke my language, small town rural Virginian. He even introduced me to his adorable daughter, about 8 and all grins safe by her father's side, at the end. It was like the old days, 30 years ago, when people could talk and trust each other a lot more, when we had a lot less government and less social experimentation in our lives.

Guess whose business cards were on the desk of the repair shop? They were from the guy who came and rescued me the night before. It's called a community, folks, remember those? Benefit one: reliable repair place that just opened and a reliable tow service that are close to home. Benefit two: emphasis on emergency preparations in my personal truck, no matter how many miles per year I put on it. Each trip was so short, I'd convince myself that the tire was OK for a little longer. What I also forgot was that I was driving a lot more back and forth to the gym.

I was waiting in the waiting room for about 2.5 hours, but I had something to read and my computer if I wanted to get online for some reason. I had snacks in the truck, so I was good to go. Being caught stupid last night, I thought the least I could do was be prepared to wait on my truck repairs. The book was How to See Yourself As You Really Are. While I was reading about love and compassion and my responsibility to set an example for the world, the boy from hell flew into the waiting room. Benefit three: always have food and water in addition to emergency food.

The little brother was about 6 and the older boy was about 8. The older boy was the anti-social one. The first thing he did was turn the radio in the waiting room up way too loud, so that it was disruptive adn left the room. He was showing me who was in charge. That's a classic mental disorder symptom, with roots in self-hate and frustration from no one providing any productive direction. In other words, nobody gave a damn and he knew it.

As the older boy and I did some light jousting wth the volume control on the radio, he came real close to taking a swing at me as he left, the smaller child played happily and the mother pretended she was exploring the surface of Mars for cotton candy, or some such thing. She sure wasn't with us here on planet Earth. I think she was on some strong medication, like Xanax.

Long story short, the mother and older boy end up frustrated and the younger fellow pulls up a plastic chair next to mine and starts showing me pictures of Mustangs and Porches. I liked that boy the second I saw him. Of course, these days, I was concerned how close he got with the way the world is. But, he kept his distance and we did all right. He had positive energy. Here I am reading a book on how negative energy finds negative energy and positive energy does likewise and it all unfolds right before my eyes. The picture of the younger boy sitting quietly next to me reading, imitating me, was too cool for words. He was seeking positive energy and completely ignoring his brother's negative behavior. Benefit four: the power of a cool head and kindness is unlimited and positive energy does yield the same.

Given that episode and the last 24 hours, something very significant is taking place. There's this balance occurring between the physical and spiritual. Though I was more like the younger brother when I was little, I also grew up with parents who didn't give a damn when they thought no one was watching. I have some of that older brother in me, still. After 40+ years, it feels really good to know that I still care and that I can still see reality and not the fabrication put forward by ignorance. The question is how I am still like this and why did those last 24 hours happen the way they did? In 24 hours ago, I went from giving up to going onward with a renewed faith.

More later on this book. I recommend it very much. Benefit five: I don't have to tell "Sarge" that I lost my homework.

More Gym Stories

To all personal trainers out there, God bless you. The amount of skill it takes to run a person through a program and target the muscles so precisely, while protecting that person against injury, is incredible. It's a tough job and requires huge amounts of energy. Thanks.

I got the roughest work out of my entire life yesterday, and I feel like a million dollars today. Not only did I survive it, but I'm hardly sore at all and that trainer ran me all over that studio for a solid hour, core training. My body was fighting with all it had to let me know what I was doing was strange to it.

Towards the end, I was wasted. The signals of my brain were getting all scrambled. It was actually a lot of fun. Next week, session six of six. The trainer says there's no way to know for sure, but she mentioned 3 months as a time I may want additional routines or an evaluation from her of where to go from there. I was thinking 3-6 months, so that fits in with what I already had in mind. BTW, I'm 45+ years old.

For anyone considering a personal trainer, I think a lot is luck. It's my impression that the more family-oriented places draw the better trainers...the ones who are really on a mission to make a difference. If America had its priorities straight, gym and trainer expense would be tax deductible and physical education would be a higher priority at schools. I'm living proof that someone doesn't have to be the class jock to be more healthy. It just takes effort and a teacher who knows what they are doing. Most PE teachers I knew were kind enough, but hardy role models for fitness. They all had pot bellies from beer.

To find a good trainer, picking a good gym is a start. I'd suggest staying away from places like Gold's, with all of the hype. A small community gym is my favorite, YMCA or similar.

A Word About Nevada Brothels

I will always be supportive of some form of regulated/legalized prostitution, primarily a minimal system in place to help prevent the spread of diseases and stealing or violence against clients or providers. The working girls and customers both should be registered and regularly tested for STDs and AIDS. I include the customers because it makes no sense to me to insist that a working girl be tested weekly, but an asymptomatic or lice-ridden client can walk into the room of a "clean" worker. That's nuts. We have credit checks before credit is gven, so a health verification twice a year for a brothel customer isn't asking too much. A sound system would work like a private social club in which all parties are regulated to maintain some order and control.

Prostitutes could be certified like electricians, car mechanics, or plumbers. They could then work for any licensed business or clubs. That means they could arrange their own incall and be self employed, or they could work for someone else who takes care of security and compliance. Both situations would involve announced and unannounced regulatory inspections for cleanliness and compliance. With my system, prices would have to be posted, current video would be required. The practice of posting pictures that are 10 years old is nothing less than fraud. Also, it is unconstitutional to impose extra taxes on someone because they are engaged in a particular business.

No where in society do we permit secret pricing, punitive taxes based on occupation and the misrepresentation of a product status, except the corrupt propane and heating oil industry. The LPIN system is comparable to Wal-Mart not letting you know a price until you get to the register, then the cashier insists on a high price which you are expected to "negotiate" with frustrated customers waiting for you to make your mind up and move on. The women all talk about pricing and the customers are not allowed to or their service form the providers is terminated, so it's a rigged game from the start.

LPIN exists as it does because there is no competition. It's time for people to stop kidding themsleves into thinikng LPIN is anything but a rigged game against the customer, and that state religions must be removed from state law. I ask once more, get religion out of my government. I know it doesn't belong there and the KJV Bible, which all fundies supposedly know so well, also makes a clear distinction.