mousemusings...multimedia, music, progressive politics, video, web design and general rants
Human beings will be happier - not when they cure cancer or get to Mars or eliminate racial prejudice or flush Lake Erie but when they find ways to inhabit primitive communities again. That's my utopia.
~Kurt Vonnegut
Thursday, December 29, 2005

Iran and Petrodollars

Again, I ask, why are we demonizing Iran?
Every greenback carries with it the accumulated weight of two centuries of war, slavery, and ethnic cleansing of Native Americans. It is the flaccid script that has fueled 50 years of covert activities, coup d’etats, and third-world death-squads. It churns through the arteries of the empire to the furthest most extremities where torture and abuse are carried out beneath the tri-colored standard. It is strewn across the empire like the myriad gulags that now speckle the planet. It is the heart of the beast; a venom-pumping organ with arteries strung across the globe like the concertina-wire that surrounds Falluja, Samarra and Tal Afar.

In William R. Clark’s “Petrodollar Warfare; Dollars, Euros and the upcoming Iranian Oil Bourse”, Clark outlines the problems the dollar faces if Iran proceeds with its plan to use a euro-based oil trading exchange. The new Iranian bourse would compete head-on with the New York Mercantile Exchange (NYMEX) and London’s International Petroleum Exchange IPE) giving international buyers an option of “buying a barrel of oil $60 on the NYMEX or IPE or 45 to 50 euros via the Iranian bourse.” Clark calls this the Federal Reserves “biggest nightmare” as it would precipitate a face-off between the dollar and the euro and would fundamentally change the dynamics in the world’s largest market.

The asymmetrical warfare that is approaching will put the greenback squarely in the crosshairs; the weal-link in America’s coat of mail.

Hugo Chavez knows this, as did Saddam; that’s why he switched to the euro 6 months before “Shock and Awe”. Now, Putin is trading oil in euros and Iran will open an oil bourse in petro-euros in March. For Iran, its actions are tantamount to a declaration of war. Already, America’s proxy Israel has threatened to attack in March. Is it merely coincidence that Iran’s oil bourse is scheduled to open at the same time?
[read it all]
posted by Cyndy | link |   | |


Conditions

Dawn has a post about 'rules' and Christmas giving. Being frugal is not about denying yourself fun, but about what gives you peace of mind. Some people find that 'things' give them peace of mind and expect that others should feel the same. The lesson she learned is more valuable than the gift.
posted by Cyndy | link |   | |


Saturn


click pic for more
posted by Cyndy | link |   | |

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Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Dr. Suess prints

posted by Cyndy | link |   | |


Linkfest

I'm catching up on a few I want to read and thought that, for a change, instead of just putting them in my del.icio.us, I would link to them here. No I haven't read any of them yet so they are only suggestions not recommendations.

An Exponentially Expanding Future from Exponentially Shrinking Technology

Energy question may spell end of the good life for the West

Consumption and The Affect on Our Societies

Watch it crash: your health care, your pension, your house

The NYC subway-bus strike and the slow death of the American pension system

The Housing Market’s Last Gasp

Bushies Refusing to Diagnose Returning Soldiers With Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Shock, awe and Hobbes have backfired on America's neocons

Politics of fear

Bush Impeachment Not Out of the Question

Big Labor's Big Secret

Popularising philosophy
Question marks


Precis of The creative mind: Myths and mechanisms

Argentine workers take control

Whiners On the Right
A new wave of campus PC


There. That should give me something to do for awhile. As if...
posted by Cyndy | link |   | |


Why are we Demonizing Iran?

Perhaps the same concern that the US held when it looked as if Iraq was considering trading oil in Euros (see The Euro Effect: The Real Reason for the War in Iraq) is the big reason Iran is in our invading spotlights.

This was announced quietly:
On March 23, 2006, the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System will cease publication of the M3 monetary aggregate. The Board will also cease publishing the following components: large-denomination time deposits, repurchase agreements (RPs), and Eurodollars.


From Flogging the Simian, whose entire post you should go read right now:
In June 2004, Iran announced it was creating an oil bourse. The word "bourse" is a French word which means "exchange" and refers to an international market exchange where oil can be traded. Currently the only two oil bourses are in London and New York.

Should Iran's oil bourse be successful and sales be denominated in Euros, this will induce hedging of the Euro versus the dollar and fundamentally alter the prices of oil.

So, as soj writes..."the Fed wants to stop printing the statistics of how many dollars are being held overseas precisely when those amounts may go down dramatically."
...) Of course most of the (US) saber-rattling is over Iran's nuclear program and the word "bourse" is never mentioned. But the IAEA has consistently stated that Iran is in full compliance with its regulations and the conditions of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. That doesn't negate Iran's political alignment and support for terrorism, but their nuclear energy program is hardly the threat it's made out to be.

All I can say is it hurts to think about and I hope what I'm thinking is completely wrong. I think I know better than to hope.
posted by Cyndy | link |   | |


2005 Person of the Year


Congressman John Conyers Jr.
posted by Cyndy | link |   | |

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Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Workplace Priorities

"Was Santa good to you?"
"What did you get for Christmas?"
If one more person asks me either of those questions, I may reply rather rudely.
I usually reply with "I don't do Christmas" which always brings on a host of other questions I don't feel like answering. As adults, are we seriously so selfish that we would continue to believe that Christmas is still all about 'getting'?
No one ever asks "What did you give for Christmas?".
One year, a co-worker, who has since left his earthly body behind, asked what I got for Christmas and I answered, 'nothing'. It so bothered him, that the next day he brought a gift of earrings in for me. I thought it was very sweet of him but it did bother me to think that our culture places our personal worth to be what we 'got' for Christmas as if we were children who didn't behave ourselves throughout the year. I know that one particular co-worker saw me as a child, and I would never have begrudged him the sense of duty he felt, however, when a person who is closer to my age asks me what I got, I bristle. Especially when they know enough about me to know that I long ago brushed aside the ritual.

Regardless of the above feelings, I would never ask anyone what they got for Christmas mainly because it is insensitive. I grew up around poor kids who didn't have dinner for Christmas, not to mention gifts. They are rude questions.

I only bristle a little when a co-worker asks, "How was your Christmas?" knowing damn well I worked. I usually grumble and say, "I worked", really wanting to add the words, "So you didn't have to". It would go right over their heads anyway, because by that time they are so busy telling me what they 'got' for Christmas, that I just don't bother. Yep, I'm grouchy and sometimes it gets really cold watching from the outside window, looking in.
posted by Cyndy | link |   | |


The Currency of Scarcity

I've been wondering what drives us to be such indiscriminate consumers. Specifically, why my brother, when he was alive, seemed to think the world owed him everything. He never felt as if he had enough even though he lived in a country of abundance. Maybe that very abundance, if it's all you see, feeds into a scarcity mentality. Ultimately it was that scarcity mentality that took my brother's life. It always had to be faster and better. Faster, on a motorcycle, is deadly.

Fear feeds into the scarcity mentality. I feel it sometimes myself, especially when thinking of oil depletion. I'm very afraid of being cold, truth be told. I also feel a sense of scarcity being pushed upon me by politicians, namely Bush, in recent speeches about preserving our 'way of life', while at the same time destroying the American 'way of life' for many people, and while yet again, invoking the nonexistent 911/Iraq connection.

Fear.

Go buy stuff. Preserve your 'way of life'. Pacify your outrage of the horrors of the Bush administration by digging yourselves deeper in debt. Pretty soon you won't have time to notice that your 'way of life' has been taken. Your constitution, internally, and the one this country was founded upon, have been stripped.

We can get Beyond Greed and Scarcity
If a society is afraid of scarcity, it will actually create an environment in which it manifests well-grounded reasons to live in fear of scarcity. It is a self-fulfilling prophecy!
Also, we have been living for a long time under the belief that we need to create scarcity to create value. Although that is valid in some material domains, we extrapolate it to other domains where it may not be valid. For example, there's nothing to prevent us from freely distributing information. The marginal cost of information today is practically nil. (well, maybe not quite yet) Nevertheless, we invent copyrights and patents in an attempt to keep it scarce.

...) The biggest issues that I believe humanity faces today are sustainability and the inequalities and breakdown in community, which create tensions that result in violence and wars. We can address both these issues with the same tool, by consciously creating currency systems that will enhance community and sustainability.
Significantly, we have witnessed in the past decades a clear re-awakening of the feminine archetype. It is reflected not only in the women's movement, in the dramatic increase in ecological concerns, or in new epistemologies reintegrating spirit and matter, but also in the technologies that enable us to replace hierarchies with networks (such as the Internet).
Add to these trends the fact that for the first time in human history we have available the production technologies to create unprecedented abundance. All this converges into an extraordinary opportunity to combine the hardware of our technologies of abundance and the software of archetypal shifts.

More articles on dysfunctions of money and currency alternatives.
posted by Cyndy | link |   | |

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Monday, December 26, 2005

wintertime feast

your fingers
tapping softly on the laptop
echos of raindrops
singing reminders of
a steadfast summer rain
dressed in the disguise of
winter snowsuits
melted dissent written
into the pitter-pat of words
listened to by
darpa and me
drenching us daringly
with dexterity
a reconstituted constitution
for our dining pleasure
as we continue to eat
what we are served


~cyndy
posted by Cyndy | link |   | |

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Sunday, December 25, 2005

Santa


is a Wildman


The power of shape shifting along with the experience of one's own death and resurrection are two key aspects of the classic shamanic experience. These two themes are essential to understanding the iconography of Christmas and will help to reveal a deep connection between Santa Claus and mushrooms. The question arises, if in fact Santa is connected to mushroom shamanism as it appears, then where and how has this knowledge remained hidden for so long? This is a simple question with a rather complex answer that involves the demonization and criminalization of mushroom shamanism over time.




Just as presents are placed under trees and exchanged during Winter Solstice (Christmas) there is a present waiting for you under the trees if you have the understanding of where to look and what exactly to look for.


These plants are very likely to have been instrumental in evolving human brain structure and chemical makeup and even consciousness to the point that remnants of the states achieved through their usage have remained as elements of what we call regular consciousness. We owe the advancement of consciousness and capacity for higher thinking to our plant allies. Still today the usage of these plants is beneficial to the mind in the extreme, thus we can recognize this recurring theme from the worldwide myths detailing the finding or receiving these gifts of the gods.
posted by Cyndy | link |   | |

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Friday, December 23, 2005

So-called Patriots?

Here is a question for all the so-called patriots who support our
President:


So the President thinks it is OK to circumvent judicial oversight, and
thinks it is OK to lead Congress around by a nose ring.
 Doesn't that completely defeat the purpose of checks and
balances -- one of the most important parts of the foundation of our
legal system?

posted by : Joseph j7uy5 | link |   | |

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Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Vote


click image to vote
posted by Cyndy | link |   | |


Speaking of Impeachment...

Referring to the previous post here: If you are mulling over the implications of the President's lies about the wiretaps, consider this: the fact that he lied about it shows that he knew it was wrong. And if you are teetering on the balance, not sure if impeachment is the way to go, check out this old film. It appears to be one of those ancient films that we all has to watch in Social Studies classes, like in the forth grade or something, back in the 60's.


The film is about "Despotism," showing that you have to look behind the "fine words" and understand the behavior of the leaders of a country, and the implications of those behaviors.


I mention this because, maybe, the people who made those films were on to something. Maybe it takes a video to get people to think. It certainly looks as though facts themselves are not sufficient.


HT: Quirky Outtakes.

posted by : Joseph j7uy5 | link |   | |

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Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Blatant Deception, "Because We Value the Constitution"

I don't know why we are even having a discussion regarding even a slight twist of legality to the actions Bush took when he authorized spying on Americans. No legality to it. He knew it, he knows it, and he has to pay for his crimes.
Support John Conyers.

Ask your congress member to support his efforts.

Empty words from a speech Bush gave in 2004:
found at the whitehouse.gov site until they change it, of course. After that you can probably still find it here.

Bush: "there are such things as roving wiretaps. Now, by the way, any time you hear the United States government talking about wiretap, it requires -- a wiretap requires a court order. Nothing has changed, by the way. When we're talking about chasing down terrorists, we're talking about getting a court order before we do so. It's important for our fellow citizens to understand, when you think Patriot Act, constitutional guarantees are in place when it comes to doing what is necessary to protect our homeland, because we value the Constitution." [ audio ]

Of course this was before the election.
New York Times Had Secret Surveillance Story Prior to 2004 'Election'
Censure Bush
posted by Cyndy | link |   | |

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Monday, December 19, 2005

Virgin Galactic

posted by Cyndy | link |   | |


Astronomy Picture of the Day


The image was taken in polarized infrared light with the Cassini spacecraft wide-angle camera on Nov. 2, 2005, at a distance of approximately 1.7 million kilometers (1.1 million miles) from Saturn and at a Sun-Saturn-spacecraft, or phase, angle of 119 degrees. The image scale is 104 kilometers (65 miles) per pixel.
Reflection of light off of moons like Enceladus (pictured) and the billions of small particles in Saturn's rings, gives the giant space orb an unusual glow, an effect highlighted in polarized light.
posted by Cyndy | link |   | |


Listening To:

What a treat! I just listened to the podcast of the Bear Story as told by Sage of quirkynomads. The Bear visits while they were living in their yurt. You just have to listen. No spoilers from me.

quirkynomads is "The story of a family that said, "If the Republicans get any worse, we're moving to Canada." And then? They really did."
posted by Cyndy | link |   | |

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Sunday, December 18, 2005

Tell Me More: On the Fine Art of Listening

...creative listeners are those who want you to be recklessly yourself, even at your very worst, even vituperative, bad-tempered. They are laughing and just delighted with any manifestation of yourself, bad or good. For true listeners know that if you are bad-tempered it does not mean that you are always so. They don't love you just when you are nice; they love all of you.

In order to learn to listen, here are some suggestions: Try to learn tranquility, to live in the present a part of the time every day. Sometimes say to yourself: "Now. What is happening now? This friend is talking. I am quiet. There is endless time. I hear it, every word." Then suddenly you begin to hear not only what people are saying, but what they are trying to say, and you sense the whole truth about them. And you sense existence, not piecemeal, not this object and that, but as a translucent whole.

Then watch your self-assertiveness. And give it up. try not to drink too many cocktails to give up that nervous pressure that feels like energy and wit but may be neither. And remember that it is not enough just to _will_ to listen to people. One must _really_ listen. Only then does the magic begin.

Sometimes people cannot listen because they think that unless they are talking, they are socially of no account. There are those women of an old-fashioned ballroom training that insists there must be unceasing vivacity and gyrations of talk. But this is really a strain on people.

No. We should all know this: that listening, not talking, is the gifted and great role, and the imaginative role. [ read more ] via Mark Dilley

Category:
posted by Cyndy | link |   | |


Deconstructing Reconstructionists, Redux

There has been a fair amount of interest in the Impeach Bush campaign. There've been two polls that I've seen. One, a Zogby poll, shows that 42% of Americans would support impeachment, if the President lied about the rationale for the Iraq war. Another, by Rassmussen, shows that 32% of Americans would support impeachment.

Obviously, most people are not paying attention.

It seems odd that only 42% would favor impeachment if the President lied to us about the rationale for the war. If that is not a high crime, I would like to know what would be a high crime.


Thanks to Mark Dilley for the sign.


Oh, and about the title, I would like for people to recall an old post, pertaining to connections between Bush, Diebold, and the Reconstructionist movement. That in itself is not grounds for impeachment, but it is scary as hell.

posted by : Joseph j7uy5 | link |   | |


War on Christmas Becomes Bloody



Originally uploaded by paanta.



The absurdities astound me. Even Ann Arbor is not immune. I'm not sure how many brains were lost, or shall I say, consumed, but it's clear, things have changed. They are everywhere and no one is safe, even with Bubble Boy at the helm.
Read The Expose for the sordid details.
posted by Cyndy | link |   | |

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