The first man who, having
fenced in a piece of land, said
“This is mine,” and
found people naive enough to believe him,
that man was the true founder of civil society.
From how many crimes,
murders, from how many
might not any one have saved mankind, by pulling up the stakes, or filling up the ditch, and crying to his fellows:
Beware of listening to this impostor; you are undone if you once forget that the fruits of the earth belong to us all, and the earth itself to nobody.
— Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Discourse on Inequality, 1754
Buddha’s Example of the Burning House
Gautama, the Buddha, taught
The wheel of desire on which we are bound,
And bade us
Put off desire, and thus without it
Go into the Nothing that he called Nirvana,
And one day some disciples asked him:
“Master, what is it like, this Nothing?
We all wish to put off desire, as you bade us, but tell us
If this Nothing, into which we go,
Is a kind of oneness with all creation,
As if a man lay in water, limbs at ease, at midday,
Empty of thought, lay lazy in water, or sank into sleep,
Scarce knowing if someone tucked a blanket round him, so deep was he under;
Tell us if it is a pleasant thing, this Nothing, a good thing,
Or if it is simply nothingness, cold, empty, without meaning.”
The Buddha was a long time silent, then shrugged.
“There is no answer to your question.”
But in the evening when they were gone
Buddha sat under the breadfruit tree and gave to the others,
Those who had not asked, the following example:
“Once [...] Continue Reading…
Government economists promised us endless growth. Everyone would have their own property, their own investments – everyone would be a capitalist.
You took out loans to get degrees for jobs that did not exist, took out mortgages you could not afford, racked up credit card bills pretending that you, too, were middle class.
Now it is clear. There is no room for you at the top. Capitalism is a pyramid scheme that has run out of ways to expand.
rioting in Greece,
striking in France,
occupying schools in England.
All North Africa is in revolt as the effects of the recession sink in.
This wave of uprisings will reach the United States last of all, maybe, but it is on its way.
The ruling order will seem unshakable until the day before it collapses.
Sure, the basic mathematics and societal relationships that Raw Materials Economics makes explicit holds true, proved every day in the fallout and collateral damage from its abuse. Small joy in this victory.
One thing not factored into Raw Material [...] Continue Reading…
A domino fell in the small town of Sidi Bouzid, in central Tunisia, where Mohamed Bouazizi, a 26-year-old graduate student, was accosted by the authorities for selling produce in the souk, the equivalent of a farmer’s market, without a license.
Mohamed Bouazizi, like many in emerging economies, could not find a job in his field, or any other field, and so was forced to resort to hawking olives and oranges to support his extended family of eight.
The officials reportedly humiliated him, and when he went to city hall to try to go “legal,” they wouldn’t even let him in the door.
These are the circumstances that led to his now famous act of self immolation: in protest, and in full view of passersby, he stood in front of city hall, poured lighter fluid on himself – and struck a match.
Which dominoes will fall next? And where did it start?
President Barack Obama – Empathy Deficit Speech (in part):
“The Scripture tells us that we are judged not [...] Continue Reading…
Peace On Earth In Our Lifetime Special Report saw its first iteration in 2010. It corresponded with the beginning of my personal development newsletter. You can still download your copy for free, as of this writing, when you subscribe to my newsletter. Do it now if you have yet to do so.
This is a real big deal for me. In case you did not know, I also run the Wilie Nelson Peace Research Institute blog and now it, too, emphasizes personal development. This signifies a trend.
My oldest and dearest friend, student and client launched her own online business in 2010 and that deserved a good amount of my attention and consideration. Now that it is up and running I’ll be able to put more attention and consideration into other people’s projects.
The profiles at YouTube, Facebook, Linkedin and twitter need my attention so look for me at those places online as well.
Perhaps I will do a feature or two about my worms. An attorney in [...] Continue Reading…