Evolving Peace

A site that is progressing for the goal of everlasting peace within ourselves, our family, our friends, our country and our planet !

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Juicy News

As I have posted a short time ago, I have become removed from the rest of the world and while it dismays me that I am not able to get myself as informed as I would wish, in some ways I am glad I have been out of touch. There are many problems accentuated in the world today and to my shock and horror while awaiting repairs on my truck, I was duly informed on the world today. Despite my removal from political affairs, I do know that a landmark court decision was delivered that debunked the claims of the auto industry. In that case Judge William Sessions declared that under the Clean Air Act and along with the EPA’s approval of a California ruling on limiting carbon emissions a state can regulate mileage standards to miles per gallon of automobiles and that automobile industry can comply; however that does not seem relevant to the news of the day. So, while I awaited my repairs instead of stories of emissions or other relevant concerns, I and America were informed of the circumstances of Mr. O.J. Simpson.

My guess is that the media moguls and the powers that be would rather have Americans blinded with celebrity gossip and to keep them from being properly informed. Words have come out strongly condemning the biasness of Media empires like Rupert Murdoch’s Fox News and Newscorp, while the rest of the industry has been left to their own misdoings. As I embark, on my diatribe against the news media, I am reminded that other political perspectives do too criticize the media but their faulty premises are on that is a liberal bias. Whatever the faults are of the media, I can summarize is that in either case it needs a serious change. The media has been come so overly consolidated that the situation has become less fair or even unbalanced. Currently, as the years progress America is left with less and less sources of news and the powerful news empires battle on marketing the product. Fox, the news channel of the right with its over- zealous commentators O’Rielly and Hannity, CNN the news company that brought you the First Gulf War, MSNBC with its alternative Keith Olberman, or the CBS evening news with celebrity Katy Couric. The industry has become nothing but a source of revenue and if they market to a particular crowd they too can get their share of advertising dollars or control

Newspapers do not fare much different. In Vermont, the Burlington Free Press is owned by the Gannet Newspapers the publisher of the ever so popular trash paper the USA Today, which for practical purpose is only usable to line the bottom of a bird cage. In New York, Headlines fill the tabloid Daily News and New York Post with shocking celebrity gossip. The New York Times may offer an alternative with “all the news that’s fit to print” but in actuality stories are be buried in the corners of page A-17, and while they are at it the concurrently publish the Boston Globe. Alternatively, to those more interested in the business news, The Wall Street Journal pontificates the corporate line. (As a sidebar I Rupert Murdoch was trying to buy the Wall Street Journal)

The problem of today is not that people do not care; it is that they are taught not to care. The media powers have created a medium to captivate the masses in world of consumerism and bliss. Breaking News tells us that OJ is in trouble, while the real news that the world is in trouble is buried deeply beneath the headlines. The media has reached a point where although they are not a function of the government, they practically are. The news media creates the headlines, creates the celebrities and tells you who to vote for. Obama is for change and Fred Thompson is Ronald Reagan’s heir apparent they tell us. The Counterculture icon Timothy Leary passionate words declaring "Turn on, tune in, drop out" should be changed to “Turn off, Tune out, Drop Out.” Drop out from the system and begin an adventure to think for yourself.

Robb Kidd

“The media's the most powerful entity on earth. They have the power to make the innocent guilty and to make the guilty innocent, and that's power. Because they control the minds of the masses” Malcolm X.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

War is Not Peace

In the insane world we live in today, the Orwellian doublespeak of War Is Peace is rampant in the political culture of the day. Six years ago today, a group of individuals of Middle Eastern (Saudi Arabian mostly, our allies) decent hijacked commercial airliners and sequentially propelled them into The World Trade Center and the Pentagon. America had been hit and the consequences of American foreign policy had come full steam ahead and attacked the heart and soul of the nation.

Safely across the Hudson river and tucked away in my former suburban home in New Jersey, I saw the smoke funneling above the New York City skyline and wondered what was going to become of this tragedy. In my heart, I thought maybe this was America’s wakeup call and America would soon question its involvement in the affairs of the world. What naivety I had thinking that people would stop and question. Instead of the hopeful somber reflection I had envisioned, America became engulfed with patriotic zeal and fervor.

That evening, I vividly remember sitting in the local bar and watching the repetitive broadcast news morbidly tell the story of the day, until one striking individual came storming in with anger. His leather jacket was draped with the colors of the American flag and proudly with no remorse he shouted, “Damn towel-heads… I just punched one of them in the face at the gas station; get the fuck out of America, I told them” Too bad for this man, to be raged in so much anger to not even realize that most of the gas station attendants in that town were either Indian or Pakistani and not of Middle Eastern origin.

Shortly afterwards, CNN (Corporate News Network) aired footage of gun fire in Afghanistan, and the crowd around seemed to cheer. “Bomb them to pieces” and Fuck’n Nuke them”, were the words surrealistically floating past me. These were the words I had heard and my heart had been crushed. America was enraged, so instead I sat back and drank my pint of Guinness and perplexedly gazed at the world around me.

As the world turned, the hatred grew further; America soon entered Afghanistan in search of Osama Bin Laden and the beating of the drums pulsated louder. The President and his minions, a bunch of Democrats, the so called Liberal Media, the “extremely liberal” New York Times and practically everyone else within the power structure called for more war. “You are either with us, or against us,” the President cowardly whimpered and the frenzied masses ate it up. Nowhere in the news coverage or in mainstream culture was there any reference to the lies and misrepresentations of facts and truth became causality.

“These people hate freedom” or “they don’t like our way of life,” we were told. I am amazed that people actually believed that. Can anyone one explain it to me, that someone who does not like freedom would come to America to kill themselves along with others, just because they do not like freedom? Now, that is crazy and to anyone who really believes that simplistic way of thinking, I have a bridge to sell them.

We are stuck in a world of lies and deceit and until the countless masses of zombies wake up from their Coca-Cola Commas we are all doomed to be in perpetually state of war. The War on “Terrorism” is a lie and is just another way to blindly keep Americans captivated in a never ending quest to catch a bogeyman. Terror does not stop, by bombs and nor will it ever be stopped by dominating the entire world. France learned that lesson years ago in Southeast Asia particularly in Vietnam, Britain supposedly had in Africa and India but I guess America is just a little bit learning disabled.

War is not peace, no matter how much the government tells you. It is time to reclaim the government from the war mongers of the Republican and Democratic parties, as well as to bypass the talking heads of the media who have lied to us in the past, present and our near future. War is not the answer, no matter how you frame it.

Robb Kidd

In a time of universal deceit - telling the truth is a revolutionary act.” George Orwell

Friday, September 07, 2007

Move Vermont and People Forward

Over a month ago, Vermont’s Legislative leaders, House Speaker Gaye Symington and Senate President Pro-Tem Peter Shumlin announced their formation of a commission to study the legalization of gay marriage. For those outside of Vermont, Vermont was the first state to pass a civil unions law that granted rights for the gay to join in a civil union, but feel short of passing fully equality. To Shumlin and Symington, I agree that when it an issue occurs in regarding rights there is no better time to address them but now. Here in Vermont, debate is starting to shape forward in proclaiming the rights of the gay community.

When civil unions did pass there were those who took offense to it and for that they mounted a full counter attack; however their efforts where futile because it was mixed with intolerant religious rhetoric and homophobic fear. “Take Back Vermont” was their charge and their voices rocked the political climate of Vermont. A sleeping giant of right wing conservatism was woken up but despite their protests civil unions became law. Up until just recently, the backlash had been mere echoes of the turbulent times, for you can still see some of the signs posted along the back roads broadcasting their message of fear.

Those voices had been quite but now Symington and Shumlin have decided that the time was right to reintroduce the issue of gay marriages, they are awakening again. This time the things have changed and states throughout the country are not only passing civil unions, but also gay marriage legislation. Vermont is merely alone its recourse for it is joined with the strength of the prevailing winds. These statutory rules are not being replaced by legislatures, but by the courts. Iowa’s (not a hot bed of progressive ideals) Supreme Court had just struck down Iowa’s ban on the grounds of constitutionality last week, at now gay marriages has hit the heartland of America.

The times are changing; however there is still a token of resistance and many political pundits question the congeniality of the commission. To some there is worry about bring out old wounds and a just a desire to keep the issue at bay, but I refute that claim, for “No one is free when others are oppressed” and “Separate but equal is not equal. When is it good to give some one their rights? Today is the right time and not later. There are still people who feel that it was legitimate to discriminate against African-Americans, but our laws changed because it was the right thing to do. As with racism the country did not wait for the right time, for the time is then, and therefore the time is now. We did not evolve into our system of laws because a few people did not want to insult the voices of the “intolerable, racists,” nor should we do that now for the “homophobic.”

As they introduced their plans, I applauded them for being bold and pushing the issue to the forefront. A particular legislator in VT had told me that the way he counteracts his constituents who are opposed to gay rights is to simply ask them how they have become adversely affected by a homosexual individual. Not once, has he gotten a reply and I am sure that 99.9 percent of the time that will be the case. The world had not ended when civil unions were passed nor will then gay marriage cause it as well. However, there are those who claim it based on their religion and to refute that is to remind them of the separation of church and state. We as individuals can not make our religious views applicable to the law for we do not live in a religious theocracy (at least not yet).

While, I pontificate the expansions of rights, I want to remind people of what others out there may see. The more and more the issue is brought about the mere it will be shown that those opposed to it are merely fearful and disillusion individuals that are in need of education and learning tolerance. Below is a letter that was printed in Friday’s Times Argus and it shows that point:

Lawmakers should reject gay marriage
September 5, 2007
So our legislators in Montpelier have appointed a biased and one-sided committee to study gay "marriage," and think it will look legitimate if they stick just one token opponent on it? Oh, please!

Is it any wonder the Muslim people of the world hate us Americans so? After all, their holiest book, the Koran, teaches them that homosexual behavior is one of the world's great evils (as indeed so teaches our own Christian Bible — but we tend to ignore that).

So it should not be surprising that the extremists among them plot our destruction.

9/11 will soon seem like a garden party compared to the horrors ahead of us, and we have brought it all upon ourselves. If we are all too wimpish to show any respect for the teachings of our own Bible, lets hope our Legislature can at least avoid insulting dedicated worshipers of the Muslim faith with such trash legislation.

I left this persons name out, on the mere thought that he is already going through so much pain and anger that to write his name would just add fuel to his fire. That is why, I say let them debate the issue because their spokespeople are working on fear and not on reason and the more they speak the more they discredit themselves. Take Vermont forward!!!

Robb Kidd

“Only the extremely ignorant or the extremely intelligent can resist change.” Socrates

Monday, September 03, 2007

Labor for the Now.

Of all the days and holidays in the year, Labor Day has struck a fondness in my soul. Labor Day a day to celebrate every one and not just the elites of history, religious icons, or some Hallmark accentuated day. Labor is something we all do, whether we are conscious of it or not we all work. As Bob Dylan chimes in his song Serve Somebody, “it may be the devil or it may be the lord, your going have to serve somebody”.

So on a day like this, where very few of us are actually working, I take homage to the all the work that has been done in the year. The men and women who built my computer that I penned my thoughts on, the ones who served my coffee this morning at Capitol Grounds, and the men who came and took my garbage away, are all labors of their work. While many of us go unconsciously through our days there is a whole structure of people who make our days obtainable, and that is what the day is about to me.

As I basked in the morning sun, I am also reminded that the day is more than just about work, it is about life. While many people’s identity becomes their work, I am reminded that there is more to our lives than work. Life is about living and experiencing all that there is to enjoy and on this day we can all stop and smell the flowers. I for one had worked for almost ten years as a travel agent and the job had become nothing more than just a pay check. Work was something I must do and I begrudgingly returned each morning to what I paralleled to being a prison sentence.

Until one day, I realized that it was not what I wanted to do. At that time I wished I could just magical change my circumstances and hit a switch to transform myself into a different world; however that was not the case, for I needed to strive for that change.

Conversely, I have made that change but along the way I realized that my situation was not to just sit there and wait for the future, but to act then and now. The present moment is the only reality we as and individuals can control and there it was I began to enjoy the now.

Now, is the most important time in our lives, and no matter how much planning we can do for the future or how much good or bad times occurred in the past, we can only control now. That is what I did and no matter what situation I am in, I try to enjoy it for what is. Work was not my identity nor ever will it; I may do some other line of work in the future but as I exist today, that is all I can care for but today. Work is not who we are, but just mere means of serving our fellow man.

So, as I begin my day lounging in the sun, I take pride in having this day, so that we can all just enjoy who we are without having to serve. There is plenty of time to work and as tomorrow will come, I hope that my fellow man and woman will just learn to enjoy life as it is, because the sun is shinning today just like it will tomorrow.

Robb Kidd

“One of the symptoms of an approaching nervous breakdown is the belief that one's work is terribly important.” Bertrand Russell, 20th Century British Philosopher