Posts Tagged ‘government

18
Feb
20

Fear, a Personal Analysis of the Concept

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A wise man once said…

Fear is a reluctance to accept and learn from a possibility.

[This shall be a pooling place of thoughts and/or philosophy on the concept(s) of fear.]

Unlike denial, which is an absolute resistance to something being a possibility, fear acknowledges the possibility and responds with a frown of disapproval. If allowed to fester and grow, fear becomes a vile mold or weed that feeds off the energy that keeps its host active; it saps motivation and ambition. Some can dismiss nightmares in a short span of time; others remain troubled by them. And, still others may repeat the nightmare (in what is known as a “recurring nightmare”), similar to deja vu and a difficult reincarnation; some might say this is karma or learning a hard lesson while others would judge it as a reluctance to let go of a figment of the imagination. None of it is real…except to the one who experiences it and, perhaps, those who’ve already had the same or a similar experience.

In Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back, when Luke Skywalker is told Darth Vader is his father, he scowls and squeals as he says this cannot be true. He is genuinely afraid of the possibility he does not want to accept. If Luke was purely brave, ignorant and/or unafraid, he would have kept a straight face and told Darth Vader to go stick his red lightsaber where the sun doesn’t shine. And, it wasn’t “the force” making Luke afraid, either, even if Darth Vader, with his oddly skull-like mask, can be a bit intimidating.

Some fears are common, easier to share and accept as real, fears of the dark, deadly creatures, clowns, heights, cramped spaces, etc. Others are more particular and personal, fears of threatening people we’ve met, fears of dogs after being attacked by one, fears of eating a certain food after someone tricked you with a tainted sample, fears of trusting certain merchants after being duped into buying something, fears of rape after being a victim.

In regards to the last example, a fear of rape may be common, experienced by many, but every individual experiences it a little differently based upon the type of person who assaulted them. Someone first raped by a family member will not be as wary of a stranger while the one raped on the street will not be as concerned about family assaulting them. Thus, one victim may not always be able to “relate” with another; there may be resistance to comforting each other from a shade of difference.

Some say fear is good; they claim you cannot know or feel courage without knowing fear. But, how courageous are they who are programmed to fear a “common enemy” and/or follow the orders of a commander without question? Are all soldiers brave? Are they not also afraid? Are some not more afraid than brave? Are the ones who are more brave than afraid also naive? How many truly know the enemy and the reasons to be afraid and/or brave? [Gee. That’s a lot of questions I just asked.]

Fear is often, not always, broken by experience. You’ll fear cutting yourself less once you’ve cut yourself enough times and learned how to tend the wounds…and you’ll eventually, hopefully, become wise enough to avoid repeating the mistakes.

[Let me just pause right there to mention……I am not talking about “cutter” cutting. I don’t mean people who cut themselves to bleed out the pain they think this act will relieve. That is a different psychological puzzle with traces of will in the mix. A person who cuts him or her self while tackling a task, cutting wood, working with metal, etc., may be cut and learn from the experience. An emotional and troubled “cutter” ignores the lesson in favor of a sensory experience, similar to how some people use sex for pleasure and forget the emotional relationship aspect which often translates into “making love.”]

Similarly, we become less afraid of monsters and “things that go bump in the night” when we walk enough dark corridors, get tired of mysterious sounds in the dark and watch enough scary movies to make us laugh at what some deem horror. There’s a word for that, a word some may have a tough time spelling. Fear loses its strength the more we become numb to it. And, once we are numb enough to the fear, we can and must then rise above it.

I keep thinking back to a TV movie I’ve watched a few times, Merlin. In that movie, the grand wizard-in-training dismisses his enemy by ignoring her, depriving her of the response and attention she demands. He says she will be forgotten when and if people turn away from her. How peaceful and poetic is that justice? He didn’t lay a hand on her. He didn’t fight her. He just walked away from the fight and let “the powers that be” sort everything out. Now, sure, if the gods were cruel, his enemy could have stabbed him in the back or moved the sorceress in front of him in a way that would make her a constant pest to his senses. But, that wasn’t how the story ended. In any case, Merlin’s example sheds light on how we must get past our fears…but only once we’ve conquered them. Without having a firm grip on ourselves and proving a fear no longer can hurt us, it remains with us like a difficult infection or disease.

From personal experience, I’ve been living with a number of fears. Some come with/from a lack of experience; I acknowledge that. Others come from experiences I refuse to repeat, even if a harsh higher power puts me right back in the pit with the troublemakers. Some would say I need to go to the sources of my fears, face them and get over the feelings. But, there are some “sources” facing would only agitate the feelings. And, yet, I am sure facing even those sources would have some positive effect, a thickening of the skin as all repeat experiences should have. [To each their own path to recovery.]

Just imagine having a fear for more than a decade…for more than a few decades…for as long as one has been a legal adult or even longer, in some cases.

As a kid, I had a fear of the dark. It wasn’t so tragic that I needed a light on at all times or a hand to guide me to the bathroom. But, it pecked at me for a while. Then, I stubbed my toes a few times and confronted shadows; I spent more and more time sitting in dark places when I didn’t want to face scary company my parents kept and when I didn’t want to put up with guests who smoked, drank and spoke aggressively. I grew a thick skin that still has a slight fear of what lurks in the dark; I still shudder, occasionally, when I let a possibility enter my mind.

The best remedy I can give for this sort of fear is to accept whatever comes; if you are meant to die from what troubles you in the dark, you will. And, you cannot avoid it. Luckily, I’d hope, anything lurking in the dark won’t have an effect on more important matters like personal long-term finances. So, you might get assaulted and robbed of SOME wealth; but you’ll live to bank another day.

I’ve also been a victim of bullies most of my life. Pick a decade, and I can describe a few pests who have jabbed me with needles of ridicule and intimidation. I can cover one hand with the number I’ve stared down and repelled by my own defiance. The other hand holds those who eluded my seemingly limited influence. I cannot deny the possibility another won’t appear. I must accept this and be prepared for it. I should not be or have to be troubled by the possibility, at my age. But, such is life, and, so far, life keeps throwing me rockheads. [Maybe that’s why I become so fascinated with Geodude in Pokemon games. It’s a sort of therapy for dealing with bullies.]

[This ties a bit into how I feel about “supporting the troops.” I hear countless pleas for donations and support for forces taking it upon themselves to root out “evil,” “enemies,” “disease” and “threats.” But, from my experiences with bullies–and my fair share of ailments–it’s hard for me to buy “bully insurance.” I recall some TV shows of my youth that offered such remedies; victims would be asked by brave bigger kids to pay for the services of a protector. But, what guarantee does this provide? The brave bigger kid is not always around when a bully decides to strike; he cannot be everywhere at once and has his own life to maintain. Just as soldiers have families and friends and duties placed upon them by their governments; they cannot spend all of their time and energy on confronting things that may go boom in the night.

A soldier, in my opinion, is called upon to deal with a warring threat. War calls, and the soldier answers. If there is no war–only a fear of war or violence–the soldier is facing a vague enemy and at risk of paranoia and its ugly cousins. A soldier riddled with fear and doubt is open to sneak attacks and confusion. A soldier with a set goal in mind and the preparation to deal with anything that crosses his/her path is more likely to succeed in his/her mission.

And, as a supporter of said soldier, if the objective of the soldier in need is not clear, donated resources are at risk of waste, just as some buy groceries to satisfy a possible need but then let the food rot as they become involved in other preoccupations.]

Now, I have spilled quite a load from my busy brain. I don’t know how to conclude. So, I will leave things as they lay and let readers do with my notions what they will. Discuss.

06
Nov
18

Voting Is a U.S. Right, Not an Obligation!

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If you live in the not-so-United States, there’s a lot of hub-bub about VOTING. Oh.  Hey.  Is that today?  Yes, it may be happening right now!  Wait.  Read this.

It goes into all sorts of heated debates about rights which nip and peck at matters like race, gender and religion. It teases about aspirations for taxes, schools, jobs and the big ol’ dinosaur of a “snake-in-the-grass” known as insurance. It starts to sound like a chariot race at some Roman coliseum or an NFL football crowd. It’s like war without most of the bloodshed. I guess…that’s…a good thing?

And, unless you pay no attention to TV or…apparently…any screen receiving “feeds” of some “newsworthy” kind, you are sure to see and/or hear something about the push to vote. It might be worse than the push for pumpkin-spice everything, the obnoxious internet service monopoly commercials and…well, no, none of those is as annoying as the lawyer who can’t stop flashing his face and talking in his annoying voice every half hour because he decided to invest in every branch of life as he knows it, thinking that gives him a right to be a broadcast nag. On that matter, I vote NO.

Now, back to the bigger voting matter(s). Oh wait, we interrupt this blog for a commercial endorsement by some celebrity…yep, I think it’s none other than Mr. Technology Rapper, Common. Okay. Uh-huh. Got it, smooth talker.

So, as I was saying…

What? Wait 8 seconds to bypass this ad for candidate Dingleberry? *sigh* Oookayyy…

Ya see what’s happening here?

Now, if you have the patience and don’t suffer from one of those “attention-deficient disorders,” I have a few things to say. And, I might get winded. But, that’s just part of the misery of being a citizen in “the greatest country in the world.” [Nobody’s perfect here. Okay, Earthlings? If you seriously cannot read all I have to say, you may kindly skip down to the lower portion that begins with “Let me just make this short and bittersweet.”]

Americans?…and all who occupy the country even if you are not “legally settled in” the place. Voting is a citizen’s right. Yet, from all the noise going around, it sounds more like an obligation pending. And, on the sides, you have all the talk about interference and other reasons to be concerned.

This time, the red guys win. Next time, the blue guys win with the adolation of most “celebrities,” those members of some “academy” or “foreign press” association. [It all sounds like secret society talk, like some Luminati or Nazi nod or stroke of the nose. We got ya, boss. Wink.] Nothing good can really be achieved if every day is spent battling Joes and Cobras, or if one “side” paints the town red just for the other to paint it blue when they dominate “seats.” It’s just a waste of time and energy (life).

If recent years haven’t made it abundantly clear, the whole U.S. voting system is a joke and a mess. [Remember the “chad” fiasco from a previous election? That thing that made the cryp-to-spo-rid-i-um scare seem trivial.] But, like other U.S. messes, it goes around and around, and no one really makes an improvement. Is that stability or insanity? [And, if anyone in Russia is laughing at this, take a look in the mirror, once in a while. Are you really any better off? Is any country truly happy with itself? I’d like to know, and I might like to live there.]

And, when the voting is supposedly done, the winners get a mixed bag of quiet time (in which they can do whatever they want) and time in the spotlight when they either get mention for some kind of achievement or pestered for what they did wrong. The latest gladiator to enter this arena has been grilled and then grilled some more for being an all-around fool. Yet, all the noise hasn’t made him even flinch.

Does that mean he’s just that secure in himself or is all the noise just noise and an illusion of unrest? And, if it’s an illusion of unrest, what is going on here? What are “they” protecting at the risk of several minds, not to mention lives?

I begin to question the whole security and essence of my existence. Don’t you? Are we all just cattle being scared into bumping into each other, dropping money we supposedly earn to secure our “status” in this world and our futures, dropping it on the grate that filters into some system we have no control over though we are pressed to vote it into existence year after year? Are we just batteries in some grand machine, handed illusions of better lives until we are broken and replaced? Or, are we truly valued individuals who have a right to live on the same planet and, at least, not assault each other as we find balance with the environment?

I know the concept of everyone living content and having kids as they will is beyond my comprehension of population control. It’s some idyllic fantasy of a science-fiction show about some people and aliens in spandex costumes breaking apart the universe in pursuit of other worlds to occupy and systems of order to upset. [Yeah. Let’s upset some other race. Not ours. Whatever. I guess it’s all learning from experience. Right? Even if it takes an eternity for the light bulb to glow.] I can but choose not to imagine what life would be like if we were no different than deer and lions chasing around in the wilderness, risking the chance of being slain and eaten. But, such is “domesticated” life, conditioned in our minds for such a long time. Right?

And now, back to our voting program……still in progress.

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If voting is a gauntlet of fear and anger with a roaring crowd occupying some sort of stadium, arguing over which “side” will rule the land, I really don’t want any part of it. I mean, I am not sure I fit into that sort of medieval mentality, that clash of kingdoms and warlords where you paint your faces to represent a side and then unleash all kinds of confetti-infused mayhem on the land. You’d think the country would have evolved beyond the WW2 days of war bonds and collecting materials for vehicles, rations and weapons. Is this Game of Thrones or Fantasy Island?

If you are pressed to vote and looked down upon for not voting, isn’t that sort of…bullying? Isn’t that as bad as sexism and racism?

Is the “system” so desperate to keep everyone “involved” just to appear as if they care and can work together rather than actually learning to work together?

Has life on this planet become all about the “clicks” and “likes” rather than actually putting our hands together to make some good happen?

Are the “powers that be” so concerned about order crumbling into chaos that their only reassurance is to pressure everyone to partake in this mad scene called a vote?

If we all quarrel and fuss, are our voices reassuring anyone?

Is this like a game of Marco Polo in which being heard confirms we’re still alive and not up to no good?

If a tree in the forest makes a sound, does that mean it’s not plotting to end you?

And, if you must vote with only what you get from ads and debates and those colorful not-so-little flyers passed around until they litter the streets like some 1940s war-era movie disaster, isn’t your vote a bit mis-educated? Misguided? How many candidates make the same promises and then bend differently once in office? Does it really matter who gets in the offices? Does any side really win forever? Does anything good last? Is everyone ever happy?

[Now, I am sure it’s worse in other countries. I know no Americans are getting beheaded, killed for going against the flow and/or voicing opinions that don’t agree with the ruling force. Women aren’t as “repressed” in the U.S….though one could argue the conditioned mindsets of makeup and fashion are a bit like shackles. Is that comforting to know or just a different color of the same crap?]

I cannot honestly say I have any grand knowledge of or trust in any candidate. Sure, I could “research.” But, if all I get is the “resume” of aspirations, am I not still taking a gamble on a person’s character? I cannot be guaranteed one person put in a government job slot will improve anything. And, whether or not my vote does some good cannot be proven. It’s no better than me offering up a prayer unanswered or tossing a coin in a fountain and making a wish. Yet, both of those are not NEARLY as costly to “air time,” taxes and the environment.

[I have voted in previous elections. And, did it make me feel good? Not really. I get that voting, as a right, gives people a chance to decide who gets some sort of job which is supposed to improve the way everyone lives. But, there’s just as much chance my choice will get slammed for some crime he or she did not previously admit and turn out to be something I did not want, at all. I trusted a man’s calm face only to then question is motives and worry about the environment not only threatening job security but the resources that sustain life. If my vote contributes to making my life miserable or ending it sooner than it should be…what the frick am I achieving?!]

When George Washington became the first president of the “United States,” I doubt everyone who could vote voted. People were present and denied the chance and/or right to vote. Some couldn’t make it to wherever it was decided to have their say. Yet, some consensus pushed him up the red-white-and-blue pipe to the top and convinced him to lead the people as he had led some faction through war. And, somehow, this was better than the old taxing ways of the “red coats” and the even older conquering broods that stormed lands, slaying and enslaving natives. Well, it got his face stamped on a few things; that’s for sure. But, is that such a great thing, considering what other places have been stamped with and/or the names they’ve been given? [Boy, I sure enjoyed my weekend at Screw-Your-Soul Lake! I got the chance to climb Mt. Sisyphus and ride the It-Doesn’t-Matter-Horn.]

SEGWAY ALERT! [And, I don’t mean one of those semi-trendy electric scooters.]

And, let’s stop making memorials for every damn wrong humans committed! Aren’t movie remakes enough to let people know they aren’t learning from past mistakes? We’re not making new good; we’re just remodeling the old bad. A statue that represents a racist attrocity isn’t going to stop people from being racist. It’s just as likely to remind people how and/or why to commit one. [What did that guy do? Oh…now that I think of it, maybe I should do that.]

Ever heard of a killer that mimicked a past one? That’s kind of what history does. It’s a sneaky reminder of all the good and bad deeds done in the past, and that filters through our minds like panning for gold. Some will get the virtues while others collect the vices.

Just because there is a Mecca, pope or Buddha doesn’t mean everyone is going to pray to it, him or her and get the benefit. But, at least, those three are hopeful options versus big, glaring reminders of some horror that took place. I’d personally rather walk down a street to find some positive inspiration rather than a reason to feel depressed and/or unreasonable guilt, thank you very much. Yes, many, many people died here. But, you don’t see nearly as many memorials for all the natives trampled and slaughtered under the cover of Thanksgiving! No. Just plenty of casinos and “reservations.” Did we learn anything, class?

And, breathe.

Voting is not something you hand out on the street, not knowing where it has been and where it is going. You don’t smuggle foreigners into voting booths to sway your preference. You should not have to even worry about another country tampering with the ads and/or results. [I won’t name names because that’s like the old school ritual of gossip about “germs.” And, that’s…kinda like bullying. But, thanks a bunch, electronic “conveniences.” Is it so hard to print paper forms or take a vote in person? Why not just have every voter stand in front of a video (or “phone”) camera and voice their choice like the kooks who participate in those “reality TV game shows” who send someone packing every week? Wait. Can that be tampered with, too?] You don’t quibble about ID proof or pester your citizens about anything that they are or do other than being a registered citizen and their choice of candidates. You should not be fed similar mud-slinging stories from all of the candidates and then forced to make a choice with poor education.

If voting is no better than a “Catholic school” permitting some questionable–to say the least–practices or drilling old scripture into your heads that isn’t being respected, it’s as useless as making a complaint to the boss at work who brushes it off for whatever reason and works under the thumb of another guy who works under the thumb of another guy who… Can’t we come up with a better system, already? Or, just do our best to respect the decisions of some person or persons that want to make such decisions so badly so as to keep our heads and liberties, if we still have any.

Let’s not trade dictatorship for democracy or shuffle the cards and pick one of the already disfunctional systems.

And, god or gods help us, let’s not hand over the planet to the alien robots some aspire to replace our humanity, as flawed as it may be. As cool as some might think it is to meet a Transformer, do you really want to be replaced by one or be denied the chance to have real children of your own who go on to have their own children, and so on? Do you really want humankind, your kind, to end its historic tale in a blaze of disaster and failure? Do you think all monkeys want to be known for flinging poo?

I’ve personally heard enough about the origins of democracy to make me give up my fascination with ancient Greece. But, I’d really like such negative and worrisome feelings to just go away so I can wander in daydreams of the old exquisite architecture and happier toga parties…or kimono parties in the Far East, surrounded by cherry trees in full bloom.

Making televised ceremony of some “heir” taking a throne before making baby heirs to ensure the future of one family keeping the old kingdom’s balls rolling isn’t better. It’s like “reality TV” government. And, I really don’t see how probing into the lives of your leaders is allowing anyone to think clearly enough to run any nation. It may be “transparency,” but I don’t want someone watching me poop just to know I am not up to no good. Are the concepts of trust and faith so dead and gone from this world? Are we all so criminal that no one can be trusted with doing GOOD? [And, if you’re booking a flight to Mars just to get away from it all, send me a letter, telling how much better you have it there, provided you don’t repeat these mistakes we humans haven’t learned to correct, yet. Bomb-shelter scare, anyone?]

Ideally, you should have a chance to speak with the candidates and get a feel for what you really like and dislike about the people. After all, this is all “for the people, by the people.” Right? Well, how close is “by the people” if the candidates are just images on a screen and some audio clip endorsing the ad? And, how much do we really get out of debates other than who slammed the opposition best and who stood up for him or her self? Are debates just a wrestling match and test of social stability?

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Let me just make this short and bittersweet. [I just like to say that in hopes of preventing myself from foaming at the mouth and exhausting all of my resources, resources like those considered so abundant that they can be wasted on everything “WiFi,” cable-fed and campaign-related when there are people and other animals struggling to live in a world that can’t come to terms with population control and balance with nature. And, maybe, if you DO suffer from a drifting mind, you’ll float down here and get the consensus of my thoughts.]

If voting is not simply a right of United States citizens (and should be a right in other countries, as well), if, instead, it is some sort of obligation like taxes, attending certain schools and obeying certain laws, then it should be an educated decision people make as comfortably as depositing waste in their toilets. Yes, I am saying voting should be as pleasurable as pooping and peeing. And, right now, it’s not even close.

If you made voting available online–as I am sure many are considering even now–that is not the solution! A swipe right or left on some mobile device might be easier than going to a foreign building to fill out a ballot, but it’s as or even more likely to be corrupted and, thus, futile, just because you cater to lazy whims and, again, consider resources like electricity and all of these invisible rays passing through our bodies and everything else on the planet just to transmit “decisions” we should be making face-to-face, with each other, considering such resources so abundant that they can be wasted when so many go without and fall to the wayside.

Let’s really work together to find a “system” that works as well as or better than those supposed globally peaceful “federations” you hear about in some show about “space explorers” who…end up going to war with other worlds and fighting over who is right and wrong, anyway. There has to be a better way! Let’s find it! Not just Americans. Not just celebrity-sales-pitch slaves. Every human on Earth.

Oh, now don’t get any pushy ideas about me as some candidate. I have little to no concrete wisdom about running a house, much less a country or planet. Just noble aspirations and a weakening heart crumbling under so many social pressures and failures. And, I don’t have a clue who I could work with to make things actually better for everyone.

Don’t vote for me. Vote for your city, state and/or country’s security. Vote responsibly or not at all (just like using drugs, including alcohol, pills and all things weed-y). If you cannot meet with the candidates and feel confident in what they could do (because we cannot expect anyone entering a sea of mysterious operators from warring factions to be some kind of Moses parting the Red–Red? Hmm.–Sea), then your vote is dangerous and likely futile.

If no one votes…well, that’s not likely to happen anytime soon. But, if you don’t vote, does it really matter? Someone’s going to step up to make decisions, in pursuit of establishing noble order, domination of territory or just a place in history books. Some folks will follow that person while others will resist. And, if you do vote only to complain later about and/or suffer from the results, did you achieve anything good? And, isn’t that a shame?

I’m Writingbolt, a currently faceless (because I honestly fear for my life, sometimes) identity on a cash cow farm…er, blog site, and I support this statement, even if it fills enough pages to quality for a whatever Times bestseller. If nothing else, I’ve stated my opinion, for what that’s worth. I’m told it’s good to write down one’s thoughts. I hope that’s true. And, I hope I haven’t wasted any precious resources with this output.

01
Jul
14

Pay for Insurance; Forget Responsibility?

In recent USA news, health insurance has been a major source of discussion/concern. One particular company has been highlighted for religious values conflicting with general political procedure as well as for covering the cost of certain provisions and not others, namely birth control. I don’t know if it is part of the joke or true, but I heard Viagra is one of the provisions paid for by the company. What sense does this make?

That’s like saying…

“I won’t protect you from gun shots, but have a free assault rifle.”

“I won’t drive you home from the bar, but have a few free drinks.”

[Anyone else want to throw one in here? I’ll add it to the list.]

I’m not the most religious person yet I see the impact of careless sexual behavior. And, no birth control method has been proven (to me) foolproof. Despite man’s quest for the ideal machine/chemical formula, we’re still Einstein without the end-all-be-all equation to being. So…

The point is…people need to control themselves regardless of what money or some company/workplace provides (at cost). More SELF-control and less ARTIFICIAL control (chemical/financially costly). If you can’t keep your pants zipped and your “retirement” safe from draining lifeforms, it’s your own lack of sensible planning/decision-making. Why waste so much time, money, resources and energy on debating what people won’t do for themselves? Screw all this B.S. about what’s covered and not. And, stick it up your rears, you who make medical/health care so complicated and costly. If I won’t help myself, why should I trust or pay you to help me if all you care about is the financial cost? If we’re all taxed too much, what good are we doing each other or ourselves?




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