On Crazy

I’m not  presently crazy. I know my mortality is staring at me. That’s fine.  I’m enjoying life.

I’ve run into violence and evil but, not as much as some.

I do have compassion. It’s a human emotion.

People think guns are  evil, but they are just tools. It’s the intent that matters.

My intent has frequently been misunderstood.

On Human  Rights, it’s a mixed bag as we are all human.

There are unfortunately more predators out there then not nowadays.

I do want the beautiful little children I see to be able to defend their selves from evil.

The Human Right Self Defense is protected by the Second Amendment.

Please God, Bless America.

Peter Grace

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George Yancy and Noam Chomsky: The Roots of American Racism

Very cogent. Hopefully people will become aware that all people have souls and that slavery under any name is evil.

Vox Populi

This is the eighth in a series of interviews with philosophers on race that I am conducting for The Stone. This week’s conversation is with Noam Chomsky, a linguist, political philosopher and one of the world’s most prominent public intellectuals. He is the author of many books, including, most recently, “On Western Terrorism: From Hiroshima to Drone Warfare,” with Andre Vltchek. – George Yancy

George Yancy: When I think about the title of your book “On Western Terrorism,” I’m reminded of the fact that many black people in the United States have had a long history of being terrorized by white racism, from random beatings to the lynching of more than 3,000 black people (including women) between 1882 and 1968. This is why in 2003, when I read about the dehumanizing acts committed at Abu Ghraib prison, I wasn’t surprised. I recall that after the photos appeared President George W. Bush…

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On Progressivism

I was just reading an essay by Richard Sahn: Life Lessons from Dorothy Day.

I recall reading about Dorothy Day at the University of Massachusetts and her newspaper and Catholic Worker

I like Richard’s comment on our “our acceptance of a filthy, rotten, system that enshrines greed and injustice and inequity, a system tailored for exploitative competition, brutal punishment, and forever war”

As a nation under God, I’m of the opinion that while we do need to support ourselves; we shouldn’t do that at the expense of our souls.  Lying to get ahead may seem fine but, it is a sin.  I’ve seen that and more in my local humans. I also know humans that are good, God loving people. I’ve also met good  people who are having a hard time due to ill health or other problems. Some work is being done to alleviate this suffering, but not enough.

I’ve become aware of Slavery which still exists and is both in our supply chain and in our own nation.

Many of my fellow American citizens remind me of an animal licking it’s genitals. Not good, but very human. I hope we can rise above that.

Please stop war. Use diplomacy. Stop jailing people for honest mistakes. We are all human beings. Please remember the Golden Rule – treat other people the way you would like to be treated.

God does love us all.

God Bless America,

Peter Grace

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On outsourcing

Outsourcing seems to make sense when the function being outsourced can be done with a higher quality while controlling cost.

What I have seen is a drastic drive towards outsourcing with a major decrease in quality.

From  H1B visas are for foreign workers who take jobs from the American Middle Class.
Here are the links to data.  There are supposed to be 65,000 maximum H1B visas. If so, they seem to be mostly concentrated in Fortune 500 companies. According to 2013 statistics, 153,223 H1B Visas were issued with 99K H1B visas issued to  Indian Citizens. Not good. They should be hiring Americans and training them to do the work.

Error and rework rates increase and customer satisfaction drops off when instead of getting a person on the phone who they can understand and is empowered to help them, they get someone in Indonesia masquerading as an American.

An American enterprise should train it’s employees and hire young people and veterans while promoting from within. The predatory drive to increase profits at the expense of the middle class is a disgrace.

Hopefully we can fix this.

Peter Grace
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Cocooning ourselves

As an American Dad, I can feel the  social cocoon around me. TV, people, the  home, the auto.

It’s somewhat pleasant, but I do fear for those of us on the outskirts.

I’ve written about Our American Body which is becoming more flabby.  I enjoy walking and enjoying nature and also

(by Petula Clark)

I wish Americans  would open their eyes and educate themselves and be more vigilant. Our politicians are in bed with major corporations which are working hard to enslave you with debt. We are wasting resources on War when it would be much more efficient to put resources on diplomacy and education.

People get raped and murdered and disappeared daily due to ‘public servants’ not doing their jobs but instead being predators on we the people.  People are turned into slaves by an industry called Human Trafficking.

I hope we can fix this quickly.

They work for us, don’t they ?

Peter Grace

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On Western Wages and lifestyle

I live in the United States. The United States has seen a lot of change.  The standard of living has been gradually rising up through 1965.

Up until 1941, the United States was largely agricultural with strong industrial centers in the Northeast. Then things started to change more rapidly with the onset of World War 2. Women went into the workforce.

At present since about 2012 and slowly improving, the civilian population employed has been much lower. Most jobs seem to  be in the service sector. I’m a knowledge worker. I’m trying to put as much into my blogs as I can while I have the time.

My father bought his house in 1961 for about $34K. I purchased by first house for about $219K. Our present house we purchased for $500K. Of course, the location and  the relative closeness of good schools makes a big difference.

Depending upon what your standard of living are, your financial needs may differ. We now have electricity service so we pay for that. We have city water and sewage so we pay for that. We pay for cell phone and cable internet service. We also have gas heat which we use rarely. We do have Air conditioning which adds to the electric bill. Most of these services our ancestors didn’t have so our cost of living has risen.  Our first home did have electricity and a toilet but there was evidence of the electric service being upgraded in 1970 and there was an area where an outhouse formerly stood. We added some more electric service in our first home to put in an Air Conditioner after enduring sleeping in 120F 100% humidity.

On our appliances, we do have a refrigerator – back when my Mother was  little they used ice from ice-houses.

We also have a microwave oven, a stove and range, and a dishwasher and  clothes dryer.

All but the stove and range are recent innovations.

I’m unemployed presently but still have existing expenses. We cut television feeds and now use streaming video. We use vonage. We have more technology then we did in the 1960’s at home which has increased our cost of living.

Sigh. Hoping to be working shortly.

Peter Grace

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On Spirituality

When a young person, I resented going to church. When I was a child, I thought I might live to visit Mars. Then reality came to light. I heard about the Cuban Missile Crisis. Then the War in Vietnam and Cambodia came to my mind. Being chicken, I didn’t want to die in a nuclear holocaust or a war. Of course, soldiers are socialized to fight for their buddies and their nation. I much prefer diplomacy over war.

That’s when I started to pray that the War would end. I recall getting on my knees with my family and thanking God when President Nixon announced that we were leaving Vietnam. I do recall that at age 6, I helped a mother plant flowers around a memorial for him that had been setup at Turners Pond.

Then around 1990 I started getting spritual again. I joined St. Joseph’s Parish in Somerville Massachusetts and then joined the choir. When I moved to Simi Valley, CA I joined St. Peter Claver Parish then joined St. Rose of Lima Parish. I now regularly attend mass at St Rose of Lima Parish, Simi Valley CA. St Rose has real people and not people living in dreamworld.

I recall being rather shocked the first time I was attacked by other humans. When I’d learned that they were from Haiti, I thought that couldn’t be possible as Haitians speak Francaise, a civilized language and culture. How naive of me. Now with the present lack of spiritual training of Americans, many who aren’t even aware of the Golden Rule and that they are mortal, I fear for my fellow Americans when they venture forth. Sure violent crime is at a low. I believe that won’t last. I pray for the little children I see playing in the park. They are so beautiful. God does love us as he gave us Souls.

I do know death is inevitable. Life is good hopefully while it lasts. I love my family and my fellow Americans and my fellow humans. I wish we wouldn’t be so mean to each other. However, people are people, there is Good and there is Evil. I’ve seen some of both. Many people have experienced more then their share of evil. I’ve met Elie Wiesel who survived Auschwitz.

People can’t imagine something like that happening here. Our memories are so short. I do appreciate Wikipedia and archive.org for their references. Our homes and roads are built on the bodies of the people who came before us. Many of them, particularly the Native Americans who occupied North, Central, and South America died from disease brought by the Europeans. Some also died of lead poisoning. Typical human shenanigans

God Bless America, please.

Peter Grace

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On Your American Body

It’s rather interesting, at least in ethnography, to see American people borrowing some cultural norms from other cultures.

I’ve been seeing some body modifications in younger Americans, some of which are to cover damage done to their bodies e.g. from a car wreck or disease e.g. cancer. Mostly I’ve been seeing tattooing and piercing going on with young people. I have even seen some young males with their earlobes widened.

It seems that now most  Americans spend their time sitting most of the time. Again, as I previously said, that reminds me of ‘Wall-E’ such as in this image.

A lot of  people are into exercise. My preferred forms of exercise are walking, swimming, and cycling.  I too used to ride in centuries. My wife is mostly sedentary, She did start to remind me of the  people in Wall-E, but has been losing weight. My kids are mostly sedentary too. I hope it’s not too late for them to at least get into some kind of activity rather then turn into marshmallows.  I heard on NPR that a lot of people join Gyms, then lie about how often they go. 24 Hour fitness uses that fact. If all the people who joined actually went regularly, it would burst at the seams.

I am doing a lot of walking now pending reemployment. If Aliens visited from outside our plant,  they would think that  the dominant life-form on the North American continent were Borg four wheeled automatons.  I would like to see more  people cycling  but here in So Cal, some commutes aren’t really cycle-able in a reasonable amount of time. Some trains and buses do sport racks, but a commute by bus or train can take 3 hours.  I would  really like to work in downtown Los Angeles near Flower Street again. I could take the train there and write and read on the ride.

Besides regular low impact exercise, a good diet is key. The Food network has good info.

I had some edamane beans tonight.  Yummo.

God Bless America, please.

Peter Grace

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Breakfast Time

Every weekday getting my children up for school or work is a challenge.

When I was young, I recall getting up and having breakfast at the breakfast table in my parents home.

Now when I prepare a breakfast for a child, they seem to be focused on their DS 3 handheld game system rather than eating their meal.

A lot has changed since I was young. When I was very young, we had an 18 inch black and white television set on a mantle. We later received a 24 inch color RCA television set.  I recall watching Bewitched, I Dream of Jeannie, F-Troop, Gunsmoke, Land of the Giants, UFO. When Star Trek (TOS) came on  I was hooked. We started eating our meals in the family room round the television eating TV Dinners

My daughter drinks a breakfast drink in the morning. She won’t eat any of the food I prepare for her.

My wife feeds most of our kids mac and cheese. Not good. I did make some lentils and brown rice. I’m the only one eating it. It’s a lot more healthy then mac and cheese.

I was at a education session yesterday on dealing with behavior issues. One thing that was said was that Family Dinner is important.  We seem to have lost that. I hope we can get it back.

Peter Grace

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Poem: The Road Not Taken

On Poetry and Life – life is good, particularly for me when I take the road not taken.
Thank you Mr. Frost.

The Road Not Taken

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

For some reason I thought of Strunk and White’s Elements of Style today which I used in English class in High School.

Peter Grace