Sunday, October 18, 2009

What We're Facing

Last week my kids and I went to a visitation at a funeral home in Florissant. My ex father in law’s best friend, Art, had just died. Art had been fighting cancer for 2 years. He helped us a lot when we were fixing up our first house. There were a lot of people there and we didn’t know anyone.

My old in laws, Bud and Judy, arrived. Naturally we hung with them. Bud told me that one of Art’s kids was just in from the military and had broken his foot. He said the kid tried to get treated at Scott Air Force Base’s hospital. They denied treatment because he had already bought some kind of commercial insurance. Bud told me he almost wasn’t treated because of government red tape. “If Obama gets his way that’s the way health care will be for all of us,” he said.

I told him the Health Bill had gotten so corrupted, it’s all over anyway. “What we really need is a single payer system,” I said.

“Yeah then it would be as bad as Canada,” he said.

I told him my Canadian friends were appalled about the misinformation being spread about their system. They thought our system was totally barbaric.

Bud closed me off immediately. I could see he had nothing to say to me anymore.

The disinformation campaign of the people making all the money from our ridiculous health system has done its job. Normally sweet people like Bud will never be shaken from their convictions about evil, bloated, incompetent big government.

The democrats, wanting a filibuster proof majority, supported blue dog democrats from conservative states. We would have done better with the centrist republicans that were already there. They were way more open to compromise and bipartisan politics.

It’s healthy to be skeptical about government but you have to watch out for big business too. They’re the real power in our society. Unfortunately people like to follow and are easily mislead.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

3 Reprints for "Blog Action Day"

I think people that are skeptical about human impact on our environment should try skydiving. I used to jump in Sparta in Southern Illinois. It was close to the Baldwin coal fired electric plant. There was a brown line in the atmosphere you passed through on the way to altitude. I always felt better about breathing when we flew above it.

As you looked out over God’s country you couldn’t help but notice the quilt of man made terrain as for as the eye could see. There wasn’t an inch of property that wasn’t totally shaped by people.

When you think about space being only 62 miles up you get a sense of how thin our bubble of atmosphere is.

Of course the real problem is our population explosion. I know I sound like a broken record, but the planet’s population has tripled in my lifetime. Our planet can’t handle this kind of exponential growth.

There are consequences from our actions. Why do people deny it?

Sharon commented on my last post that you didn’t have to be a skydiver to see the effect humans have on our environment. She then asked, “Did you start recycling?”

While there is hypocrisy on my part, the point of my post was not “Let’s recycle.”

Let me explain my point to you and the other two of you who read my posts.

I have a lot of conservative and even a few liberal friends who refuse to believe we can have any effect on our environment whatsoever. Most are convinced there’s a political agenda when anyone points out anything negative we do to this planet.

From the perspective of skydiving our effect is incredibly obvious. Every square inch of the world will soon be covered with an ugly shag carpet. We all live together in a small room without windows and everyone’s smoking.

My personal frustration is the denial. Maybe you’re frustrated with my lack of participation in the solution. My kids are showing me the way and we recycle in the county when I’m there. We don’t really have it set up in the city but there’s really no excuse for me not to. I do recycle cans but that’s totally motivated by greed.

In case anyone doesn’t know, aluminum isn’t worth anything right now.

While I’m at it I may as well get this off my chest. I know some friends will get pissed. I recently started to recycle. The reason I do is to show solidarity with the cause. The carbon that’s released in the processing plants, not to mention getting recyclables trucked to them is practically a wash. You can’t even argue that we’re saving finite resources with some things. Glass is sand.

I worry that there might be a placebo effect. People might think they’re making a difference.

We’re at a crisis point with our environment no matter what corporate interests are telling us.

The things that are killing us are exponential population growth, subsidized corn, corn fed cows, nitrogen fertilizers, coal fired energy plants, and the killing off of bio-diversity.

If we all became vegetarians we’d reverse global warming. I know this will never happen but we have to at least stop feeding cattle corn. I’m not going into details. It’s easy to do the research.

We’re living in a world where everyone screams, “We must end our dependence on foreign oil!” Then when gas prices go back down temporarily everyone buys trucks again. Public perception has always baffled me. Why is it SUVs are an embarrassment to me and not to others?

It’s like bling and other shows of ostentation. It all gives me a sense of hopelessness.

I know these 3 reprints aren't specifically about climate change. I just want to point out the human impact on our environment.

Sunday, October 11, 2009


I drove around all day Friday listening to the radio. People were calling in the talk shows to voice how sickened they were about Obama’s Nobel Peace prize.

The prize was Europe’s reaction to our emergence from the eight years of bull headed unilateralism of the previous administration.

It’s sad that so many people not only don’t know about our image around the world but don’t care. Good Christians who believe if you don’t live inside our borders you can go to Hell.

Maybe Obama didn’t deserve the prize but he didn’t ask for it either. Not to mention, more than anyone else on the planet, he’s in a position to make world peace a reality.

I personally think he’s too pragmatic to make a difference. I suspect he has a little hawk in him too which makes me nervous. Maybe it’s the only way, I don’t know.

We live in a world where 98.5 percent of experts believe people have a negative effect on our environment. We give equal time to the 1.5 percent that don’t. It’s become a controversial issue.

There are folks that are angry with the Nobel people for trying to influence events. They’re appalled that Oslo has a political agenda.

They do-------- Peace!