Category Archives: Priorities

Memorial Day 2019

Memorial Day Weekend

A day that reminds us, or should, there’s always a cost to preserve anything worthwhile.

Freedom has a price. Most people don’t really understand how dear that cost, but I guarantee there are those who knew it. Unfortunately they can’t tell us now, but their actions, far greater than any political speech, inform us they gave their all.

To all those families who have lost a loved one in service of their country, or to law enforcement who gave their lives for their community, we remember, Memorial Day 2019.

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☆☆☆☆ War is something so horrible that only fools glorify it. ☆☆☆☆

 

Our National Obsession

We like our nation … We love our nation … We stand for our nation … and we die for our nation. That’s not enough … We think many others around the globe should die for it too, or at least for what we believe is for our nation’s standards.

Think that’s too harsh? Well the facts seem to support it.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Sunday confirmed that the Trump administration is making contingency plans for U.S. military intervention in Venezuela, but he refused to say whether the administration would seek congressional authorization first.”

White House acknowledges the U.S. is at war in seven countries

Roman Eagle

Eagle with stretched wings symbolizing the authority of the Roman empire

So, how many different places do we have active military operations? I’m not referring to how many bases, but how many places are we actively fighting? If you thought, well over 100, you would be right.

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[ Click on the map for better detail ]

Standard boot camp picture in dress blues

Me 1971

I’m a Vietnam era veteran, having served six years in the Marine Corps. That’s not an implication of authority or exceptional patriotism, merely a point of reference to the more casual reader who might make assumptions.

What I’ve learned in hindsight is the relative ease with which leadership assumes the right and objective of placing young men and women into harm’s way. Many times that’s under false pretense. These events leading up to, and stirring the initial support of the public, can be historic and accurate, or they can be created under the skillful machinations of “spycraft” or “false flag”.

notefalse flag is a covert operation designed to deceive; the deception creates the appearance of a particular party, group, or nation being responsible for some activity, disguising the actual source of responsibility.

The Vietnam escalation under President Lyndon Johnson was prompted by a false flag operation. The provocation and justification for the rapid ramp up of our military was based on the “Gulf of Tonkin” incident.

The original incident, sometimes referred to as the U.S.S. Maddox Incident, involved the destroyer U.S.S. Maddox supposedly engaged by three North Vietnamese Navy torpedo boats as part of an intelligence patrol. The Maddox fired almost 300 shells.

President Lyndon B. Johnson promptly drafted the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution. This became the legal justification for military involvement in Vietnam. The event(s) were contrived and President Johnson was aware of it.

The NSA’s historian, Robert J. Hanyok, wrote a report stating that the agency had deliberately distorted intelligence reports in 1964.

The Iraq War or Gulf War Round II.
Under President George W. Bush, guided by his Vice-President Richard Cheney, the Iraq incursion and subsequent war which lasted longer than Vietnam, was based on a report of Iraq possessing “weapons of mass destruction”. Code words for, Saddam has a bomb … and if we don’t act soon, he’s going to launch a nuclear bomb at us. That too was a false narrative.

from the Marine Corps art collection

We’ve been practicing invasion of the Middle East since at least 1973

This was an effective justification for launching an invasion against Iraq. We were going in to prevent another 9/11. The events of 9/11 have not only scarred but scared America into doing things against their own citizens, let alone the world. We’ve had global and national surveillance ever since Homeland Security was created.

Colin Powell, acting as Secretary of State, went to the U.N. to drum up International support for active military initiatives leading us and several other nations, into another Gulf War. Colin Powell went on to learn that he was given inadequate, and misleading intelligence, and he deeply regrets his promotion of it.

[ The following quote comes from Info Wars. Not my favorite source for information but helps identify the false flag initiatives ]
In his lecture at Contact in the Desert, Richard Dolan noted that a distinguishing characteristic of a false flag operation is that the official narrative IS NOT questioned by the media. There are often legislative, ideological and sociopolitical power plays waiting in the wings, which the government can immediately implement.”

“The most striking example of this is the Patriot Act, which was written well before 9/11 but seemed to correlate entirely with the events that had transpired.

An excellent background understanding as to the depths we will sink in order to promulgate a huge international lie, is the Valerie Plame Affair.

Under the presidency of George W. Bush, the vice president’s chief of staff, Scooter Libby, got caught leaking the name of clandestine CIA agent Valerie Plame, an act of retaliation spurred by Plame’s ex-diplomat husband, Joseph Wilson, and his undermining the White House’s claims about Iraq with more accurate testimony of his own — the “Deep State” conspiracy of the mid-2000s. There was a special counsel and an indictment, albeit not for the underlying crime but for lying to investigators, and while everyone pretty much knew something like this wouldn’t have happened without at least a wink from up top, no one above Libby ever faced a trial.” – [ Counterpunch – Lessons for Progressives from Bob Mueller — and the Valerie Plame Affair – April 2019]

Our military, our clandestine CIA, and various 3rd party military contractors have sought out and participated in active military combat operations, assassinations. We’ve come to accept that, and it’s telling the world, not in a good way, how we conduct ourselves in a global neighbor way.

Is Bolton Steering Trump Into War with Iran?

Because of the human and financial cost of a military intervention, domestic political support can erode if success doesn’t come quickly and smoothly. Television, the internet, and social media have greatly increased citizens’ access to information about the nature and progress of wars. A lengthy humanitarian intervention is harder to justify domestically than one based on national interest. It helps to spread the personnel and financial burden across a coalition of countries.”  [ lanekenworthy.net – US military intervention abroad ]

Overall we’ve become a nation of war, or at least on a war footing since the 18th century with increasing tempo in the 21st century. It’s one of our largest exports. We have an entire economy based on the creation of weapons, the maintenance of them, and “Global Security”. If we saw any other nation act as aggressively as we do, we would probably be at war with them too; and in that case, we might be singularly justified.
________ Oahu 1975 ___________
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Why Are We Slipping Behind?

The Coming Conflict

War isn’t inevitable, conflict is. What do I mean?

I recall a friend telling me, if two people think alike, there’s no need for one of them. This sounds humorous or perhaps cavalier, but at it’s core we can identify a universal truth. Individuals have their own opinions on almost anything, and depending on the persons involved, will argue their point of view until one or both find resolution or at least a willingness to co-exist.

The fundamental issue at hand, is how do we communicate with each other and by what method(s) do we resolve our differences?

Abraham_Lincoln_emancipationHere’s an overview; person 1 thinks that all purchased chicken eggs should be brown. White eggs are deemed inferior by person 1. Person 2 thinks that any egg is a good egg, and therefore will purchase white shelled eggs sometimes, instead of brown ones. Of course this seems a silly example to some, but I’m using it to explain my point, rather than take a current issue, already in play which would tend to steer people toward discussing an issue, rather than the point I’m making.

If person 1 lives with person 2, a potential conflict exists. Several factors come into play, but we can see there are things that can be done to resolve their conflict. Conflicts arise but need not escalate if the individuals involved can come to an agreement. If this were two people living apart, then maybe they would talk about brown eggs vs. white eggs, and no matter the outcome, it’s likely to be settled in a congenial way. After all, why fight over eggs, right? Well, I’ve seen couples fight over lesser things, and they can almost come to blows over such things as, tooth paste caps not being placed back on the tube, the direction of toilet paper unrolling, kitchen cleanup, personal choices in shoes, clothes, hair styles, etc.

Whenever we look at humans, and attempt to describe the cause of their problems, we can spend a lot of time blaming things external to the cause, or focusing on debating the topics of the conflict. What’s really missing is the knowledge on how to resolve conflicts. We can blame the schools, religion, politicians, our spouse, or our peers. Although there’s plenty of blame for any problem to encompass several groups, there’s really one huge elephant in the room.

st_patricks_day_revelersOur society has moved from an agrarian based economy to an industrial, and on to a service based economy. This fundamental change removes people from their individual direct survival (farming), to living near a common populous work center, and having to learn to live and work with people outside of immediate family. This seems like a recipe to help people learn how to resolve their differences and avoid escalation of conflict. In reality, we have become less capable, more emotional, and more willing to escalate, after our differences are made known.

We are beginning to see healthy family relationships are core to problem resolution. Studies show a more likelihood for success of a person, based on two parents actively working to care for and raise their children together. A child learns many things from their care givers. If the biological parents of a child are unable to resolve their personal issues, where does the foundation start for learning conflict resolution? In fact, many people are choosing to not become married, or stay with the other person with whom they made a baby. The child may learn some things from a single loving, well meaning parent, but they don’t learn first hand, how two people resolve their differences.

The child grows into an adult, at least physically, but what do they know about handling emotions? As much as people write about how men and women are equal, they often overlook their fundamental differences. I see many women asserting their right to be who they are and choose what they want for themselves, but what does that suggest for interpersonal relations? Can they set aside their desire to make something of themselves in the world? Can a man choose to be responsible and caring, perhaps even willing to stay at home and raise the children if the mother is the more productive income earner?

Men and women are different but there’s a strong desire for women to be more like men. Men on the other hand, are labeled toxic if their inclinations are ‘traditional’. We can debate what those inclinations are but in the past, those differences weren’t identified as shameful or toxic, and a woman who wanted children, learned what made their world work so they could have a family and perpetuate another generation. She was often the ‘taming’ force for good in a relationship, and the man most often the less emotional.

accomplishment ceremony education graduation

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Once again, we can zero in on what a man or woman’s roles should be, but that misses the nature of how do we train future generations to be responsible for themselves, and not blame others? … And that as I see it, is our biggest failure. We’ve fallen into a trap of irresponsibility for our behavior. We seek to blame others or at least shift our part of the deal to some agency outside of the home. It’s been said, “it takes a village to raise a child”, but if that village doesn’t do any better than the originating family, we’re not going to improve.

The child grows into a man or a woman. They find their work day world less than all of what they hope. They haven’t an organization that builds them up as a group and helps them find purpose, so they gravitate to what they individually think gives them a purpose. Sometimes though, we need our batteries recharged. We might turn to ‘social media’ and there we find… more conflict. Everything we haven’t learned about dealing with differences of opinion, on ways to find common ground, or even the desire to find common ground, are often absent. Instead we call each other names, bait one another with questions designed to make us look clever and the other person, lesser.

We have another clever outlet for our discord, the news media. They’ve learned to earn market share and increase their revenue by constantly stirring up things that will lock us in to their point of view. Instead of truly being informative they foment discord for money, and the results are obvious. We’re even in disagreement as to where we get our news, and the relative trust we can place on the source.

I could write much more on this topic, but my main thoughts are, it’s not the other person’s fault, its our own, and the reasons for our failure, I believe start within the home. An incomplete family unit fails to provide all that’s needed to go forward in this complicated world. When two people declare they love each other and want to make a baby, what are they really saying? Til death do us part, or quit after the 50th time I told him or her to flush the toilet. How we engage each other, what we choose to say in discussing our preferences or point of view, go back to earliest formative years. If we didn’t gain some healthy conflict resolution by age 12, what happens to our abilities when we no longer have any cushion, coaches, mentors, or methods to deescalate? Instead, we’re left with people demanding conformance, and fanning the flames of those differences to the point of in some cases, coming to blows.

Compromise means different things to different people. Finding ways to get along creates a healthier atmosphere and avoiding the eventual, inevitable conflict. If we fail to work though our differences in the home, how does that impact our world?

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We might call on these organizations less often if we learn how to deescalate and get along.