Thursday, March 31, 2016

NIMRODS AND LIGHTENING RODS


Nimrod, a mythical Babylonian (Iraqi) king circa 2000 BCE, is said to have built the Tower (ziggurat) of Babel. Legends imply that Nimrod shot an arrow from the tower, which was designed to breach the distance between Earth and the heavens for Nimrod to depose god's dominion over men in favor of his own. In response, the offended god confounded the completion of the tower by removing the common language from the minds of its builders. Zap! Instant multiculturalism, compliments of the Supreme Leader. Sound familiar? Divide and dominate.

Today's nimrods are those who are building virtual platforms for international communication between thinking individuals of all nations. They are shooting arrows at the controlling forces of international media and government propaganda. Corporate forces in collusion with governments are gradually trying to confound the common access to free expression which this contemporary project threatens. Voting on line, for example, is castigated by government-funded academics in information technology (IT) . They raise the boogie man of the elusive election tamperer in established democracies of The West.

I have always been amused by Benjamin Franklin's pragmatic science. His lightening experiments led to some of the first American patents of lightening rods to prevent building fires caused by lightening strikes. He profited in latter life from this. Franklin took a force once considered the smiting of human endeavors by the gods and neutralized it. How symbolically appropriate for a democratic revolutionary of The Enlightenment, the dawn of Western science.

Today's hackers are nimrods, shooting virtual arrows at the controlling forces of the internet. Some of today's IT innovators are creating citizen-friendly apps for accessing government officials and government services from smartphones. They are like Franklin, working with a potentially lethal natural force to neutralize its devastation for the common good. Many of today's streaming media pundits are nimrods. YouTube and Twitter are  towers of Babel in construction still. Other pundits, like Bill Maher, are more like Franklin, neutralizing the force of propagandist media with thought-provoking satire. Evolving human societies benefit from both nimrods and lightening rods.

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

SURE. JUST SHUT UP.


I have been a bit of an old fart lately. I have been out of touch with trends on YouTube and Twitter, which can be more informative in some ways than news sites. Yes, I watch Russia Today and Sky News occasionally. I generally stay clear of American news media because it is crap. If I want the pronouncements of our global masters, I listen to BBC. It is less offensive with British accents somehow. If I thought I could manage it, I'd probably take up French to broaden the reporting I sample. My French friends are probably laughing now if they are reading this.  

My eyes look at the world through these compound lenses. I am a retired psychiatric and hospice nurse. I am an old gay-lib soldier from the early 1970's. I am an AIDS survivor (32 years). I am a cancer survivor (13 years). I have even managed to avoid deep masochism after 15 years of Roman Catholic education. I consider myself an atheist. My partner of 13 years and I live quietly and contentedly, despite the shit storm of the world around us. But we are also grouchy old men if our exteriors are scratched. We've both lived full lives for two working-class blokes. 

My eyes have been opened to the great cultural debate of our time. It is not about economics, as I have been conditioned to believe by the corporately dominated media. The great cultural debate of our time is the same debate which fanned the flames the American Revolution, initially an economic revolt here in my hometown of Boston. The British tried to squash free speech in the American colonies. That speech, best represented by Franklin, Paine and Adams, swayed prosperous farmers to turn their backs on the assurances of The Crown in favor of making their own way on a rough frontier of European civilization. I am not saying the American Experiment has been flawless by any means. 

The pivot of free speech, largely planted in the path of the 2016 Presidential elections here in the U.S. by Donald Trump, has twirled the Left-Right political dichotomy into healthy chaos which may well spread to Europe. So, you thought it was the Syrian migrant crisis, right? I don't think so. While the fumbled Merkel approach to illegal migration contributed to the real on-the-ground chaos, a donnybrook has arisen as the dominant Liberal oppression of free speech has tried to squelch the expression of valid objections to mass migration. And in the U.S., the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement has brought to a bubbling surface the absurdity of our growing victim culture which tries to shut up free speech and rational opinion with bullying cat calls and smeared red faces of Caucasian feminists, obsessed with both rape and police brutality. 

Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton, our gentler and kinder politicians, have been chastised for responding to these BLM operatives by saying, "All lives matter." Yes, people saying that all lives matter are hissed at and booed. That's how bad it is. Religious fanatic, Ted Cruz, who has previously waged verbal jihad against gay rights, whimpers and whines when Donald Trump calls him out. This has gained Cruz heterosexual sympathy from all quarters. A nexus of troglodyte males and amazon feminists. All chanting "foul" over a silly superficial jest.

"America the Traumatized" may become our new national anthem. Here in my city of Boston, the annual exploitation of the Marathon Bombing threatens to become an institutional validation of victim culture, as the annual memorials of 9-11 once did in Manhattan, before the cultural center of New York City moved to hipster Brooklyn. The fact is, we are becoming America the Stupid. Our media of all varieties have been co-opted by the same globalist powers which led Saint Angela to encourage the hordes to invade Europe. "Divide and conquer." has morphed to "Divide and censor.".

The door to free speech in electronic free media is creaking shut slowly. A perusal of YouTube channels after typing "free speech" in the search field will still yield some stimulating and informative results with viewpoints from many perspectives. How long this will last in a culture which prefers to say "Shut up." rather than "Tell me more." remains to be seen. When that creaking door shuts, our fate as free-thinking citizens may well be sealed.  


Monday, March 28, 2016

MILO YIANNOPOULOS


The quick of mind are rarely soft and cuddly. Milo Yiannopoulos is a bright man of 31 years (Wikipedia says 32) from England by way of Greece. He is an on line celebrity and purposeful YouTube-Twitter personality. He has written for Breibart. He's articulate, pretty, flashy and openly tres homosexual. His non-virtual career focus seems to be politically conservative commentary on college campuses. He is good at it when he gets the chance to do it. Therein lies the rub for Milo and for those who want to hear diverse opinions from collegiate stages. The sincerely open-minded are a rapidly dying breed, it seems.

Milo was stigmatized by Twitter, for example. His speech has been labeled "offensive" and "hateful" and "triggering", whatever the hell that even means. But the more daring broadcasters in television, radio and especially on YouTube have reached out to Milo. He's good video and audio. And here is where, I have to say, YouTube may actually add a positive ingredient to contemporary global culture. (Sorry, Davey Wavey, but your pecs, while beautiful, do not deepen the cultural gestalt.) 

I disagree strongly with some of Milo's extremist statements on feminism, gay rights, gay bashing, guns, American politics and religion. But not all. That is the point. By listening to much of what Milo has to say, I know I could have an intelligent conversation with this young man. So why has he been banned from speaking on college campuses here and in U.K.? Should I consider myself an extremist for being able to hear validity in some of what Milo has to say? Of course not.

Milo is being banned because the regressive nature of our current culture in The West, which was codified after the 2001 political manipulation of the attacks on the World Trade Center, has extinguished real debate through common sense, observation, statistics and novel ideas. As public and private education in The West are financially gutted by the very capitalist (social Darwinian) ideals which Milo defends, the quality of public discourse, seen daily on Facebook, Twitter, etc, declines. To paraphrase a former U.S. Democrat President, "It's the stupid, Stupid."

Watching college students, many of them Caucasian women, spreading red goop on their faces as some indication of support for Black lives in protest of Milo's attempts to express ideas as an invited speaker on a college (Rutgers) stage has convinced me of the infantile state of many young adults in the U.S. academic sphere. Milo is not a military general or a government official. He is a British guest in America. He has no power over the police or the military. Why in the name of basic intelligence would pro-Black-rights activists find him so threatening? Perhaps in the same way that Yale students found Ayaan Hirsi Ali so threatening that they once banned her from speaking on women in Islam there. When you hide from a wider truth over and over, the truth-teller becomes the boogie man. 

Like Donald Trump, Milo dares to speak plainly against myths of Neo-Liberalism. I can hear the hissing already. I am Left of Neo-Liberals on most issues and Right of them on others. In other words, I have my own opinions based in education, reflection and life experience. Neo-Liberalism has become another form of fascism. It is a Fascism Against Free Speech, ruthlessly oppressing free expression of ideas which do not conform to regressive standards of "protecting" just about everybody from just about everything except street drugs and alcohol. Donald Trump, Milo and even Bernie Sanders (occasionally) cross the lines. And how the media and academics howl to silence them. To that howling, I say,"Stupid is as stupid does.", to quote another famous pragmatist. 

Sunday, March 27, 2016

EASTER RISING


This morning here in Boston I listened as the BBC tried to put a smiley-face sticker on the 100th anniversary of the Easter Rising of 1916 in Dublin, Ireland. The word "conciliatory" was used over and over again. Well, that certainly would make the Brits feel better, wouldn't it. Then there were the subtle comments blaming the Irish celebrations in 1966 of the 50th anniversary of the Easter Rising for the Troubles in Northern Ireland. Really? 

English oppression and exploitation of Ireland began in force with the Anglo-French Normans (1169-1541). One of Normans' first aggressive actions after conquering England in 1066 was to dispatch invading armies to Wales and Ireland. The Norman aristocracy were close descendants of Vikings who had once besieged Paris in the 9th century. The French King bribed the Vikings who remained after the bulk of the Viking force went back home. He bestowed the Duchy of Normandy upon their Norwegian leader, Rollo, who became Duke Robert I of Normandy. So, the Norman invasion was basically an attempt to renew previous scores between the Irish and the Vikings, whom the Irish had repeatedly repelled. Patriarchal men and their pissing contests are the thread of military history. The rest of us simply pay the price. 

I am somewhat disappointed in the choice of Easter Sunday this year for the celebration of the uprising which eventually led to an autonomous Irish Republic. The actual 100th anniversary falls a month from now on April 24th, 2016. The choice of a Roman Catholic religious holiday is a reminder of the remaining domination by the superstitions of Rome. This is a disservice to the memory of those who were actually largely opposed in their deadly struggle by the Roman Catholic clergy in Ireland in 1916. They mostly sided with the wealthy class of Anglo-Irish for all the usual reasons.

My body contains Irish DNA through my paternal grandfather's family. My surname is present in the city of Cork today, though my branch fell away from Bantry on the West Cork coast. My grandfather's grandfather brought his wife and infant son to the U.S. during the Great Famine (1845-1852), an atrocity largely engineered and exploited by the British occupiers. That DNA rises when I look at Irish history, but I am not really Irish. I am simply a human being who lives in a time when all the assumptions of aristocrats and proletarians who see the world through the eyes of exploitation and greed  are being tested. This is its own rising on a threshold of monumental change. 

Saturday, March 26, 2016

ESCAPE ARTISTS

The Great Escape: Gustav Dore's "The Angel at the Sepulchre"

Harry Houdini's wild popularity no longer intrigues me. I am beginning to understand that most human beings are escape artists or aspire to be. No country embodies this more than the U.S.. We are a country of frequent moves and neighborhoods which change like shifting desert sands.

The massive outpouring of sympathy for the migrants flooding into Europe can be seen as mass empathy by escapists for escapees. Look at how much more attention and sympathy the migrants have garnered than those who have stuck it out peacefully amid the violence in Syria. Where was the outpouring of military, emotional and financial support for them from The West during the past five years?

Americans love a life of escapism. The escape from unpleasant urban/suburban life into virtual life, such as Facebook, is just a symptom of a longer standing pattern which started when the first European escapists landed here. That escapism, caused by greed and frustration, swept across this huge and sparsely populated continent within two hundred years, an eye-blink in previous human history. Unfortunately, for the established Stone Age communities who were living an ecologically evolved life here, massacre was unavoidable in the path of the escapist tsunami of people with cannons, rifles and explosives.

The boatloads of escapees now coming ashore in Europe are simply emulating America's ascendancy on a very basic level. The majority are economic migrants. They are motivated by materialism, as seen in Western-generated media, dominated by American technology and capitalist values. They want more. Among valid asylum-seekers are LGBT people who are attempting to escape lives in a religious prison under threat of death. Escaping from prison when you are innocent of any crime seems to be the definition of a legitimate claim to asylum.  

The nomadic basis of the major world religions based in Judaism also contributes to the escapist tendencies of modern humanity. Ancient nomadic cultures always lived in tenuous ecological circumstances. The Old Testament can be read as a study of population growth and the conflicts it creates between competing cultures. As the nomadic people of Israel grew in number, so did the wars they waged with neighbors who lived in more established and fertile environments.The Egyptians and Assyrians lived in fertile river cultures when the Biblical Israelites were still roaming the desert with sheep and goats. 

The recurring theme of escape from enslavement in the Old Testament carries throughout later Jewish history. The conflict of the psychology of nomadic tribalism in juxtaposition to constant integration throughout global societies seems evident in Jewish culture historically and today. The ultimate escape from a tomb by an executed Jew led to an ideology which offered an escape from Jewish tradition for those who felt dissatisfied with it. This escape from genetic tribalism to converting colonization won Judeo-Christians victory over the Roman Empire and the creation of their Holy Roman Empire. 

America has been the vacuum into which humans have escaped for thousands of years. From Siberian land bridge migrations to modern immigration from Central America, human beings have come to North America in search of sanctuary and expansion. Europeans have migrated here in the millions since the continent was accidentally discovered. They too were mostly religious and economic migrants escaping rigid caste systems and rigid ideologies, based in the Catholicism of Rome or Moscow or Athens. 

Most of us can look at our families and see escapism in action in America. We are often described as a mobile culture. The truth is that most parents with multiple children have one child who stays close by throughout the duration of their parent-child relationship while the others escape the nest to construct more independent lives. I refer to the escapee siblings as the 'Teflon variety'. They tend to remain unstuck from the day-to-day aging needs and deterioration of their parents in part through constant motion/escape with socially acceptable excuses. Very often the stay-at-home sibling has been a conditioned gay/lesbian child whose non-familial relationships have been deemed secondary to what they have perceived as their responsibility to their aging parents. 

All this running away is fine until the planet gets so overpopulated that there are no longer resources or spaces for escape. This will be the challenge of the human species in the very near future. The measure of our evolution as a species will come when we are caged together by our own propensity to overpopulate and pollute our environments. Perhaps Stephen Hawking's fear of robots is related to the possible logical conclusion by the artificially intelligent that the human species is simply dysfunctional in its own ecology. If our new Frankensteins are built with the human potential for rapid and violent resolution of problems, this could indeed create the need for a new kind of human escape for survival. 






Wednesday, March 23, 2016

COLLABORATORS WITH TERROR

Jihadist march in London, UK, in front of French embassy.

The product of European ghettos has come to fruition. Brussels has a Muslim ghetto which has been housing and incubating terrorists. Police investigations have revealed that local Muslims have been turning the other way or passively collaborating with those with radical Islamic ideology. Accepting this and learning from it is not being Islamophobic. It is the realization that dominating ethnic or religious identities, promoted ruthlessly by Western multiculturalism in recent decades, has been counterproductive in developing truly multi-faceted, democratic civilization in some localities. 

Distrust those who readily shout "Discrimination!" when their religion or ethnicity are looked at skeptically and logically. Distrust those who cry out against assimilation into their adopted cultures. Distrust those who refuse to educate their children in the their resident culture. They are the ones most likely to place their narrow identities above the welfare of greater human society. 

Monday, March 21, 2016

DEDICATION VS ASPIRATION


The difference between Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders is clear. Donald Trump represents individualist America. This is the America of Horatio Alger (1832-1899), which peaked during the previous Golden Age of the American elite. Bernie Sanders represents a return to the New Deal America of Franklin Roosevelt. That America was responding to the deep economic divide created by the Great Depression which followed the Golden Age and the subsequent devastation of World War I. Hillary Clinton represents the status quo, a comfortable place for the bourgeoisie who support her. 

Digging a little deeper than political propaganda reveals the process of the daily world on the ground in the U.S.. Alienation and selfishness are evident in any public urban space. Despite political correctness fostered by corporate media, real human beings are not connecting in any meaningful way in the public spaces of America. Strangers on public transport do not interact. Pedestrians on sidewalks meander into the path of the oncoming without regard, People push past in crowds without any effort to excuse their aggression. 

Dissatisfaction with the social environment in the U.S. is countered in media with a clear message that aspiring to great wealth is the answer. Insulating oneself with property and money is sold as the defense against the inevitable decline of civility. Comfy SUV's sell because they are mobile bubbles through the ruins of infrastructure and the hassle of overcrowding. 

Selling aspiration to material excess is big business because unenlightened people are insatiably greedy. Oprah Winfrey's touted scores of luxury real estate purchases represent the American Dream for those who don't know better. Donald Trump knows this. His rallies are filled with the ignorant and frustrated, not the educated and healthy.

I was raised by poor children of Roosevelt's New Deal. They had known deep deprivation and fear. They had lived in substandard housing. They had experienced hunger. They had worked as children. Yet, they had deep social consciences. They had experienced the power of societal cohesion as a method to social improvement. Their hard work for their neighborhood and community yielded them decent lives.

Fascism and the forces which mobilized Americans in the New Deal were somewhat similar, just as Stalinist collectivism and German fascism were similar. The defining difference between Roosevelt's indoctrination and the indoctrination of Hitler or Stalin was the purpose of that indoctrination. Roosevelt was true to the better nature of the American ideal: Equal prosperity for all individuals through cooperative work by mobilizing the individual's dedication to that ideal. Stalin and Hitler were selling aspiration through fear to build an idealized nation state with power to dominate and eventually produce trickle-down prosperity to the masses. 

Today's emerging generations have been fed a diet of individualist aspiration, not dedication to social causes. Even the realm of non-profits has been merged with celebrity entrepreneurship. The concept of simply doing a good job at whatever you do for the sake of self and social improvement has been lost in our educational systems. Hard physical labor is demeaned or greedily controlled by unions whose missions have become distorted by corrupt leadership. The resulting deterioration of our public infrastructure and public spaces is obvious. 

Individual aspirations and social dedication are not mutually exclusive, despite attempts by greedy capitalists to make them so. But narrowing individual aspirations to greed for individual material wealth throughout a society excludes any hope for a peaceful and cooperative culture within that society. Americans would do well to teach their children dedication to social well being over aspiration to the newest and latest material distraction.


Sunday, March 20, 2016

RESPONSIBILITY AND INTELLIGENCE


The great 'breakthrough' deal over migrants invading Europe may gain Turkey its membership in the EU, despite the hesitancy of democratic humanitarians to admit a theocratic country which oppresses journalists, its largest ethnic minority (Kurds) and LGBT people.  This deal with a more moderate devil as opposed to allowing steady intrusion by culturally dissonant migrants with massive financial and psychological needs strikes a hollow note. The following silence will be a tense one, because the EU must know that the war in Syria has simply been a catalyst for an invasion from its impoverished and religiously polluted South predicted decades ago.

BBC hosted an interesting panel discussion in Jordan recently. An audience of Syrian refugees/migrants, native Jordanian citizens and Syrian-Jordanian citizens listened and interacted with a panel of politicians from Jordan and the EU, and an NGO representative. The general attitude of the Syrian refugees and economic migrants was simple: We want more of everything, such as food, housing, education, passage to the EU, free passage to and from Syria with Jordanian passports, etc.. A Jordanian minister desperately tried to assert his government's commitment to the current Jordanian population's well being as the first priority. His words rang an off note in the general attitude of appeasement on the panel. 

The German ambassador, a woman of Merkel-like demeanor, repeatedly spoke of the EU's responsibility to the Syrians. However, not one of the panelists addressed the responsibility of the Syrians in their own predicament. Perhaps this is why one of the Syrians, a woman living in a refugee settlement, felt entitled to blame those trying to help her of not making more efforts to help pregnant women in the camp. Really? In other words, she was holding the panelists responsible for the decision of men and women in wartime dilemma to have more children. The Syrian civil war has raged for five long years. It did not start yesterday. Where is the intelligence and responsibility of reproductive education and restraint? 

With all the talk about the intelligence of the Syrian migrants and refugees, I have to wonder where the evidence of this intelligence resides after hearing these presentations. Is it intelligent to have passively supported a totalitarian regime for decades and then act hapless when it backfires on you? Is it intelligent to subscribe to religious beliefs which have fanned the flames of conflict? Is it intelligent to keep having children in times of war? Is it intelligent to drag your children across borders only to have them run riot in refugee camps without schools or structure? Is it intelligent to place your small child alone on a boat to cross the Mediterranean?

I believe the European response to the refugee crisis has been neither intelligent nor responsible. I believe it has been motivated by economics rather than compassion. If the leaders of the EU had been compassionate, they would have cut all diplomatic and economic ties with the countries responsible for the Syrian debacle early on. They did not. In fact, they scooped up profits from weapons and war. They vied for favor with the very criminals in the U.S., Russia, Saudi Arabia and Iran who were puppet masters in Syria and Iraq. 

There is no fix for Syria from outside Syria. There is only more disruption and breakage. Research quoted by the Jordanian minister I mentioned previously indicated to him that refugees spend at least 17 years abroad before returning to their country of origin for the first time. That is a generation. So, the small children of today will be starting families before the Syrian crisis begins to heal in realistic ways. And, if The West simply houses people from Syria in mono-cultural ghettos, it will take much longer and Europe itself will be in crisis. 

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

LIBERATION VS MUTILATION

UK's youngest M2F SRS patient who has sought public funding for reversal (F2M)

As the transgender-rights debate reaches a crescendo in the Massachusetts Legislature, I have continued to work out my own thoughts on sexual reassignment surgery (SRS), which is still a controversial method of dealing with gender identity issues. For example, no U.S. medical school offers specialized training in this surgery. As far as I can tell, no U.S. medical insurance covers this procedure, unless the procedure is used to correct hermaphroditism. Some state medicaid insurance has covered isolated optional cases of this surgery. See the linked articles at the end of this post for some more information. 

I support a society in which anyone can peacefully dress and behave however they wish without fearing violence. I do not support a society in which thought police try to enforce a conformist ideology about anything. This is called "fascism", whether it is based in political correctness or the lowest form of racism. I feel there are those in the LGBTI political class who would support this kind of regulation of thought, opinion and speech. I believe this is dangerous and wrong-headed.

The explosion and exploitation of SRS in mainstream media is unavoidable. The overt motivation on the part of human rights activists is understandable. By demystifying transgendered people, they hope to reduce public hostility based in fear. Well done. But aiming for promoting acceptance of a behavior can sometimes be seen as promoting something which is unnatural as normal. Homosexuals have been accused as being unnatural for centuries until recent research has indicated that homosexuality lies on a sexuality scale which is based in inherited characteristics. In other words, homosexuality. bisexuality and heterosexuality are simply natural manifestations of human sexuality.  

Decades of investigation and debate have clinched the argument that homosexuality is most likely based in brain chemistry and structure, formed by genes (DNA). This is where homosexuality and transgenderism part ways at this time. Part of the reason for the uncertainty about the causes of gender identity disorder or gender dysphoria is due to LGBT activism. Research into gender identity issues has been curtailed in U.S. academic circles due to the acceptance of optional surgery as a primary treatment. Similar to stopping a search for a viral vaccine because a pharmaceutical company found a pill to cure the symptoms. These surgeries are unnatural violent interventions. 

I would find this acceptable as an ethical person whose background is in psychiatric nursing if the "cure" was not the physical mutilation of healthy human bodies to soothe a disturbed human mind. Castration, hormone imbalance and mutilation are the treatments of choice in SRS. Whether or not the patient wants these procedures, they are drastic and unnatural. Cosmetic surgeons have no ethical limitations in this matter. They make fortunes by enabling narcissism and denial of aging in the general population of those who can afford the surgeries. I believe the medical and psychiatric establishments have abandoned patients with gender identity issues in favor a a quick fix. In part, I believe this has happened because the quick fix not only removes the difficulties of dealing with these patients from the realm of therapists, but it makes many in the medical establishment a lot of money without a lot of supervision of and accountability for their practices. 

I find it interesting that the supposedly erudite medical professionals who prescribe and execute SRS are in line with the most machismo cultures. In these cultures, deeply prejudiced and intimidated by dogmatic religions, it is more acceptable to become transgendered than it is to simply be naturally homosexual. I begin with a quote from the Human Rights Campaign web site on religion: 

As early as 1988, gender reassignment surgery was declared acceptable under Islamic law by scholars at Egypt’s Al-Azhar, the world’s oldest Islamic university. In Iran, in 1987, Ayatollah Khomeini declared transgender surgical operations allowable. The basis for this attitude of acceptance is the belief that a person is born transgender but chooses to be homosexual, making homosexuality a sin. Nevertheless, many transgender Muslims after reassignment surgery suffer rejection, socially and culturally, in their own communities due to their remaining in their place of origin.  If one is unable to relocate to another region where they are not known, they often suffer verbal and physical violence.

So, the medical and political establishments in developed nations have adopted a philosophy consistent with the most homophobic religious ideologies on the planet and on ancient superstition. The allowance of transgenderism in some cultures is based in an ancient belief that anyone who is attracted to someone of the same sex is obvious born into the 'wrong' body. Meanwhile, there has been absolutely no identification of a consistent biological basis of transgenderism in someone born with normal genitalia. In other words, transgenderism, as far as we know, is based in the psychological disorder, gender dysphoria, discomfort with sexual characteristics of one's natural body.

What am I on about? I believe encouraging body mutilation as a primary method of dealing with internalized, gender-confused homophobia in an unexplored and uneducated mind is unethical and barbaric. I believe it is a form of gay-bashing in the extreme. It actually makes some heterosexuals feel their dehumanizing of homosexuals is justifiable. 

My objection is not addressed to the victims of what I see as rationalized and politicized malpractice by cosmetic surgeons, endocrinologists and pharmaceutical companies. My heart is with anyone who feels uncomfortable in his/her own skin. I know that pain to some degree. However, I also know what it means to suffer the after-effects of mutilation. I suffered major internal and external radiation damage from cancer treatments over a decade ago. This damage is permanent, and I am no longer the physical person I once was. I know the toll this taken on my consciousness, even though it saved my life. 

My changes came in my 50's. I have adapted. However, the thought of a physically normal young adult committing to irreversible gender reassignment surgery disturbs me as a gay health care professional. I do not believe a troubled young mind, no matter how tortured by an obsession with its body image, is capable of making a fully mature and informed decision to be castrated or otherwise mutilated by a physician. Quite the contrary. I think it is easier for medical professionals to cede to the obsessive yearnings of that mind rather than to take the time and commitment to offer extended treatment without immediate surgical intervention.

I have personal reasons to advocate for better therapy services for those with gender dysphoria and other disorders. In my childhood in the 1950's, I displayed symptoms which would now most likely put me on an autism scale. My early education was extremely difficult, but several patient teachers and other adults guided me out of my dysfunctional behaviors to more functional behaviors. They took the time and care. Later, I was seen by many in my working-class community as effeminate because I was gawky, shy and uninterested in physically aggressive team sports with other boys. With some encouragement here and there from adults, I managed to find my peace with myself and a path to a more enjoyable young adulthood, which included activism and working with people impaired by mental illness. 

I would not support any full ban on gender reassignment surgery. However, I also do not support the current large-scale surgical reassignment industry which yields millions of dollars to potentially unscrupulous medical providers. I advocate for mental liberation, facilitated by compassionate and skilled therapists,  over physical mutilation at the hands of those who stand to profit from it. I find this article from a feminist web site very interesting: How Sex Reassignment Surgery Works in America. This article about 8 people seeking to reverse their SRS is also informative.


Saturday, March 12, 2016

ABSURD EXCUSES ARE ACTUALLY LIES.

Merkel: She'll be right back. 

I have been reading quite a bit of the mainstream media's propaganda about the European migrant crisis. I have concluded that the E.U.'s intentional opening of the European continent to Middle Eastern and African migrants is a calculated capitalist tactic to lower the standard of living for average Europeans and thereby lower expectations of future generations. It is the same tactic used in the U.S. recently, encouraged by Reagan's amnesty, until the populace refuted propaganda that told them that Central and South American migrants were a godsend for our nation's well being. The awakening of a frustrated middle class after 2008 forced a Democrat son of Kenya and the U.S. to begin massive deportations of illegal migrants under Presidential orders. 

It is in the interest of the international 1% who control most money and resources to confuse and dilute the 99%'s cultural integrity. By allowing the incursion of millions of culturally dissident migrants into Europe's heartland, indigenous Europeans will be distracted as the 1% politically dismantle the social security mechanisms which have supported their evolved lifestyles of education, vacation and secure retirement. It is a plan which allows the 1% to profit from wars outside the E.U. while stifling internal opposition within the E.U.. Divide and conquer.

Merkel's Mother-Theresa act is simply that. She is a shrewd politician, not a nun. The recent exclamations of horror in Berlin when a German opposition candidate in East German local elections suggested the German army protect German borders with force if necessary belie the absurdity and hypocrisy of the German government which has gladly sent troops to Afghanistan and Iraq to kill civilians there to please their U.S. partners in NATO. The many billions spent by NATO and European governments on ships to patrol the Mediterranean is conveniently forgotten as the E.U. cries to Greece and Italy that it would be impossible to keep migrants from their island shores. The Mediterranean is not the Atlantic or the Pacific. Routine technologically sophisticated patrols off the coasts of Africa and Turkey could easily turn back the majority of trafficker boats, if so ordered.

Israel, heavily funded by the E.U. and U.S., has enough patrol power to constantly keep weapon smuggling at bay off its shores. It could certainly expand its patrols in international waters along the East Coast of the Mediterranean. It would never agree to deal with traffickers of fleeing Muslims, I am sure, for obvious reasons. But why wouldn't the E.U. incorporate Israel's massive military into a coordinated plan for dealing with the migrant crisis discreetly?

The concerted effort of European media to belittle Donald Trump is supportive of my hypothesis. Trump is a rich renegade. He is a traitor to the quiet Bilderberg class of Europe. He threatens to disrupt their plans for European privatization and dismantling of socialist democracy by exposing the mad greed of those who have too much at the expense of too many. Trump admits his madness and greed openly. This is already spawning a socialist backlash in the U.S. which could potentially sweep Bernie Sanders into the presidency with a Democrat Congress in 2018. 

So, all these cries of "Islamophobia" and "xenophobia" should be taken with a grain of Mediterranean sea salt. They may well be masks of a greater plan by oligarchs to cow the remains of the educated European middle class into its own execution chamber. 


Thursday, March 10, 2016

CARRYING YOUR WEIGHT?


I was very fortunate to have a paternal grandfather who was an apolitical socialist. He was born in 1883 to poor Irish-American parents with thirteen children in Danvers, Massachusetts, then primarily a farming community north of Boston. His father had been brought to the U.S. from Bantry, Ireland, as an infant during the Irish Famine. My grandfather, James Andrew Creeden, knew relative financial security and the depths of poverty during various periods of his 78 years. 

My grandfather's socialism was based in his self-education and his basic belief in ethical Christianity. He went to work in a leather processing plant at the age of nine to help support his family. One of the few areas of contention between him and my father was my grandfather's disappointment in my father's refusal to pursue a higher education. Despite this, my grandfather frequently voiced his appreciation of my father's dedication to doing the right thing.

My consciousness from an early age was flavored with a learned awareness that I would need to carry my own weight in life. Our family was not poor. My father, a policeman, carpenter and real estate agent, worked sixteen or twenty hours a day to provide us with a middle-class life. My mother maintained our household and also worked a full week. She was a self-taught bookkeeper and administrative assistant whose employers valued her greatly. My mother had left nursing school to support her Russian-immigrant mother and younger sister when my Lithuanian-immigrant blacksmith grandfather bottomed out as an abusive drunk. 

My parents had not been given money or luxury of any kind as children or adults. That standard applied to my older brother and me. We were expected to grow up to be independent and useful citizens. We were expected to support ourselves and to work for society in some capacity. My parents tried relentlessly to choose a socially relevant field and get rich. It stuck with my brother who became a successful dentist. I chose a humbler route. I taught high school and eventually became a registered nurse. 

As I watch the persistent indoctrination by corporate and fiduciary capitalists in today's American media, I plainly see the core reason why our society is becoming less and less humane. Middle-class children are being raised by capitalist parents to become celebrities or rich entrepreneurs. They are being raised to be (profit) takers, not givers. Carrying society's weight is being designated to the poor or those who cannot "cut it" in finance or business. Actually, carrying society's weight is being consigned more and more to those who are not born well off. And this is not new.

I chose to speak of carrying my own weight intentionally. Look at the part obesity plays in advanced societies. As many in the lower income brackets become obese, they are less likely to carry the weight consigned to them by the economic caste system. In fact, they themselves contribute to the overall weight of social needs. They require more medical care and work less efficiently. This makes them even more dispensable when technology can replace them. This will inevitably intensify societal unrest and dysfunction

I believe we are at a point in the U.S. when a societal shift must occur if we wish to remain a prosperous nation in concert with international partners who are committed to healing our damaged planet. Our most privileged young people must be convinced to dedicate their life work to social causes rather than making more money for their aristocratic blood lines. Our government must change its focus from creating personal wealth to creating generalized social well being. I encourage anyone who bothers to read this to consider carrying your own weight in whatever way you feel you are able. And, if you have influence over young minds, please ask them to consider becoming givers, not takers. 


Monday, March 7, 2016

REVISION


Historians like to hiss the word "revisionism". As I grow old, I understand. One of the subtle tortures of aging is having to listen to phony obituaries of the famous and infamous. Nothing brought this home like the current eulogizing of Nancy Reagan who died a few days ago at 94. 

Ronald Reagan's wife was the epitome of nouveau riche classlessness. Haughty, vain and vacuous, her hallmark contribution to American society was "Just Say No.", her failed way of addressing addiction in the U.S. by spending millions on useless advertising which simply showcased herself. A most telling anecdote was her oblivious reply when she was told one of her veteran make-up staff, a gay man, had died some time before of AIDS. She had not even noticed his absence and responded minimally at the news of his death. I will not be lowering any flags to half mast. 


LET'S IGNORE THE REAL ISSUES


The Europeans are engaged in a rather typical hand-wringing exercise over migration from war zones which were caused by the American Bush-Cheney opportunistic invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan. Destabilizing Iraq and Afghanistan has thrown the entire Middle East and the Muslim-indoctrinated world into chaos. Why?

Islam throughout most Muslim cultures has an integral philosophy of territorial domination. Perhaps this stems from the religion's roots in a culture which survived on oases in deserts. Lose control over your oasis and you will die of thirst. Perhaps the founders of Islam saw an opportunity to expand their territories to places with more water and grassland for grazing. Whatever the reasons, disrupting territory dominated by Islam is like smacking a wasp's nest with a stick. It wouldn't take a rocket scientist to figure this out. 

Europe is paying the price for its collusion with the U.S. in its idiotic invasions. Now we see an older American public, the same yahoos who cheered on Bush-Cheney after 9-11-2001, cheering Donald Trump because he pledges to defend them from the consequences of their previous folly. 

The meddling of Russia, Europe and the U.S. in Middle Eastern affairs since WWII and earlier was bound to bear the human misery present in the region. The alliance between the U.S., Europe and Saudi Arabia has been a collusion with tyrannous evil for money, oil and convenience. Russia's collusion with Iran as part of residual Cold War politics has encouraged that theocracy's covert evil in the Middle East. 

Within predominantly Muslim nations, intellectuals have cynically pretended that they subscribed to a religion of brutal patriarchal dogma. They have allowed themselves to be cowed into silence by politicians who have used Islam as a weapon to dominate (not educate) the uneducated masses, which long ago exceeded the numbers which are sustainable in their environments. 

European and American politicians who voice permissive sighs in response to the current invasion of civilized nations by aggressive and desperate migrants (not refugees) are most likely motivated by guilt. However, their attempts to assuage their own guilt at the expense of their own indigenous populations is just as unethical as their previous support for unjust wars and brutal regimes. It is time for those indigenous populations of Europe and elsewhere to rationally voice their opposition to bad government. In the U.S., this is taking the form of self-defeating cheers for Donald Trump and tentative support for the more intelligent Bernie Sanders over corrupted Hillary Clinton.

Thursday, March 3, 2016

TRUMPETS


I am naming the followers of Donald Trump "Trumpets". I am not one of them. I am not a follower of Hillary Clinton or Bernie Sanders. I strive never to follow any politician. They all leave too much steaming bullshit in their wake.

If Hillary Clinton is nominated as presidential candidate by her Center-Right party, I will most likely abstain from voting. I cannot in good conscience vote for an under-medicated bipolar rich man for the office. However, I will not despair if the Trumpets succeed in crowning Trump. 

The way I see it, Bernie Sanders has drawn a new border at the southern line of Massachusetts to the Canadian border. Vermont, New Hampshire, Maine and Massachusetts may well be like current Europe to fleeing Syrians. America's Left-leaning intellectuals and educated workers who prefer to support socialism with public funds might flee our way. We may have to post friendly national guardsmen at our borders to usher them in ... for a fee. 

The brown-shirted Trumpets may well defeat ISIS/Daesh. It may take a terrorist to know one well enough to defeat him. And, once the Trumpets are done with The Heartland of the U.S., it may well look like Europe after WWII or the imminent WWIII. So be it. That's what America's rigged political system is all about: The rich conning the 99% to vote against their own best interests. Praise Jesus, or Allah, or Yahweh, or The Minotaur. Whatever floats your (refugee) boat.