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While We Still Have Time

In spite of the grimness of the times in which we live, there is still hope. If you feel, like I do, that the usual discourse about matters of critical concern tends to be superficial, misguided, and false, then you might find some solace and inspiration here. I will try to offer insight and a holistic perspective on events and issues, and hopefully serve as a catalyst for raising the level of dialogue on this planet.

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Location: Madison, Wisconsin, United States

I was born in 1945, shortly before atom bombs were dropped on Japan. I served in the U.S. Army from 1968 to 1971. I earned master's degrees in Economics and Educational Psychology, and certificates in Web Page Design and as a Teacher of English as a Second Language. I followed an Indian guru for eight years, which immersed me in meditative practices and an attitude of reaching a higher level of being. A blog post listing the meditative practices I have pursued can be seen here.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007


The moderately heroic Wesley ClarkWesley Clark was on the Stephanie Miller Show yesterday morning, pitching his endorsement of Hillary Clinton for president. Fair enough, I thought. He was NATO Commander during the administration of Bill Clinton, and his loyalty will likely be handsomely rewarded if Mrs. Clinton wins.

Then he ventured off into speculation about war with “Iran,” and his view is not far from that of the Bush criminal regime. In a nutshell, he said “Iran” must be stopped. He said that if “Iran” builds an atomic bomb, then we will have to take military action.

The really heroic Wesley ClarkWhat this really means is that the intention is to overthrow the “Iranian” regime, and control what is left of the “country” after we have given it the same treatment that we have given “Iraq.” This is what is known as “American” or “U.S.” “interest.” We are “interested” in mass murder. It is the same drumbeat that Dick Cheney is promoting. And of course, the other leading “Democratic” candidate, Barack Obama, has spoken in favor of missile attacks on “Iran” for years.

I actually found Clark’s off-the-cuff remarks reassuring. We have focused too much on Bush and his Svengali Cheney. Bush is merely the bumbling oaf who ruined the long-running projection of “American” “interests” worldwide. The trick is to control the world on the sly, to use military force “surgically” and infrequently, relying on fear, intimidation, subversion, assassination, and bribery to achieve the “interests” with minimal effort. If all goes well, then we have “hegemony,” control of countries and regions. In other words, an empire.

As far as “Iran” is concerned, the main goal is to regain the “influence” that was lost when the “Shah” was overthrown by his own people. He was our puppet, installed after the “CIA” helped overthrow the elected prime minister Mohammed Mossadegh.

I wrote in February about my friendships with a number of “Iranian” students when I was in graduate school many years ago. Through these friendships and study of events I learned about how the “U.S” attempt to have hegemony on the “African” continent and the “Mideast” was through partnerships with the apartheid regime in “South Africa,” “Israel,” and “Iran.” All three of these “countries” should be equipped with nuclear weapons, both as a threat to their respective regions, and as a way of “outflanking” the “communist” regimes in “Russia” and “China.”

“Iran” overnight became our “enemy.” The hostage crisis of 1979 provided an instant transformation, ala “We are now at war with Eurasia. East Asia is now our friend.”

For a little added context, former “Fed” chairman Alan Greenspan is now saying the “Iraq” “war” is about oil. The “war” against “Iran” will also be about oil. “We” have to have the oil, or our economy will collapse, and “we” have to have it cheap.

A traffic jam somewhereWhich brings up another factor: what we do with the oil. Today’s Madison Capital Times has a front page story about traffic congestion, and cites a study that about 3 billion gallons of oil annually are wasted by vehicles stalled in traffic, costing close to $80 billion.

If the rest of the world were to drive motor vehicles like we do in “America,” the cost, waste, and pollution would be beyond belief. According to the “CIA” Fact Book there are now 6.6 billion people on the planet. If the benefits of “Capitalism" were to spread to all of this 6.6 billion, we would be extinct in a hurry.

And just to broaden the context a bit further, we have an economic system that has to have increased output every year in order to keep functioning. It is known as the growth imperative, and it applies to individual business entities as well as “countries.”

Put simply, under current conditions, world population, now 6.6 billion people, will likely keep growing at its current rate of 1.167% per year, and the consumption of fossil fuels will likely increase accordingly, if not at a greater rate. Using the "Rule of 72," world population will double in about 61 years. That means there will be 13.2 billion people on the planet by 2068. Given an average football stadium capacity of 75,000 people, that would be 1,760,000 football stadiums filled to the brim. With 194 countries in the world, the average number of full stadiums would be a little over 9,072 per country.

The competition for fossil fuels will intensify, and the desperate push for control of those fuels will become ever more feverish. And of course, the fossil fuels will eventually be used up. That eventuality will likely be an effective reality within the next fifty years.

The context could be broadened further, but this will suffice. It should be clear by now why I find the bellicose remarks by Wesley Clark so reassuring. There is no reason to have faith that any “Democrat,” or even “Green” candidate for any national office is going to rein in the drive for empire. Similar to the growth imperative, and partly derivative of it, our system has been on a path of world domination since about 1945, the year I was born. “We” “won” World War II. If it weren’t “us,” it would be some other “country.”

This drive for empire is doomed, but “we” will continue on this path until “we” are defeated resoundingly, or our system collapses, or both. Because it is physically impossible for our economic system to grow forever, it will collapse. It remains to be seen whether our various military adventures will result in resounding defeat, but one thing should be clear by now: “we” will not conquer the world. Since under current “imperatives” we “must” conquer the world, by simple application of Isaac Newton’s laws of Physics, two irresistible forces clashing will result in (1) a great impact, and (2) one of the forces overtaking the other. “We” are not greater than the rest of the world.

Something to think about: What do we do after the empire fails? Since we can’t stop the drive for empire, a better use of our energies would be to plan for what comes next. The real imperative is to develop a post-growth-of-everything civilization.

For some added perspective on the likelihood of an attack on "Iran," click here and here.

For a little cheering up, click here and here.


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