Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Canny Chinese… Metamorphosis into Smartest “New Capitalist”

Like the Japanese a few years ago who took W. Edwards Deming’s philosophy of management to heart and laid waste to the U.S. automotive titans, the Chinese may be on the edge of taking a similar bold move. Only this time it’s all about sustainable energy.

According to the Times of London, members of the Chinese leadership have been seriously discussing Jeremy Rifkin’s book, The Third Industrial Revolution.

In his book and through countless speeches, Rifkin has painted a bright future free of carbon based energy dependency. His new economy leaps to prosperity by way of sustainable, distributed energy generation, tied together by the Internet and enabled by super smart technology – all of which are at hand as you read these words. (And, now proven in Europe, as well.)

The Chinese, historically ranked among the world’s most industrious, clever and successful “shopkeepers”, are reading his words, too.

If the Chinese leadership puts aside the old western path, i.e. carbon-based energy, in favor of a new way, they will help their people bypass a 100 years of costly infrastructure burden and accompanying environmental catastrophes. They will then “rocket” ahead of the USA.

Like the Japanese automotive industry, they will achieve this spectacular feat by putting into action an American pioneer’s idea, while our business and government leaders sit with their thumbs up their collective….a—s… and watch the opportunities and our collective hope for prosperity speed ahead without us.

Monday, December 3, 2012

First, Baby Steps

Bad Weather Event
Renewable Emergency Electricity for Homes, Condos, Apartments & Small Businesses

When the power fails this winter and your family and friends are without electricity, shivering in the cold – waiting for the repair crew to restring those antiquated power cables – consider taking a little old baby step toward your future in the Third Industrial Revolution in your town. Install a renewable / sustainable energy back up power generator.

A renewable / sustainable energy back up power generator is inexpensive, totally reliable and not dependent upon a dangerous carbon monoxide generating gasoline-powered generator. Renewable energy back up works for your condo, or apartment, too.

Most people recognize that bad weather events happen no matter which season and that they are happening more frequently. Along with the bad weather usually comes loss of electricity.

How long one may be without power is anyone’s guess.
Weeks after Hurricane Sandy some New Jersey people are still without power. A few summers ago, many of us here in S.E. Michigan were without power for several weeks due to a grid failure originating south of Cleveland.

So, power failures are not unusual and they are increasing in both frequency and severity. What are you going to do to protect your family and your small business?

One answer is to buy a gasoline powered generator. Great idea if you have a safe place to operate it. But, many do not - apartment and condo dwellers – among them.

Over the past few days I have been looking for home and small business “emergency” electricity generation products which operate using renewable energy from wind, sun or other sources. There are few on the market at relatively low cost compared with gasoline powered generators.

The idea is born of preparation for loss of electricity due to future storms. We know we will be subject to more “bad weather” events in the future. So, why sit in your home freezing when you can generate your own power to run your furnace?

My own bad weather experience tells me there is always wind during snow storms and during the summer when we lost electricity for about three weeks here in S.E. Michigan, there was plenty of sun and wind.

Additionally, I’ve read about several technological advances which when combined together make it possible to “bundle” power generation from at least three sources to create plenty of electricity to meet home electrical power needs.

Encore Boomer Movement's Earth Power Generator SystemStop worrying about freezing this winter or burning up this summer! For example, here is one of the renewable energy generator units which are currently on the market. Please check it out: solar. You will find that some configurations are also less expensive than gasoline powered generators. (Go here for a look at an outstanding home renewable generator company and various products: wind.)

Otherwise, Stand By! Because the Encore Boomer Movement's Earth Power Generator System™ will soon be available to you. It's designed to serve residents of all climates, especially northern areas, no matter the weather conditions. The unit combines three sources of renewable energy - wind, solar and gravity / disk - to safely generate enough electricity to power your furnace, computer, refrigerator, lights, radio, TV and other appliances during bad weather events.

Our thoughts are to help our communities’ transition to renewable (sustainable) distributed power generation by providing low-cost, "home" emergency generators to be offered by local government public service departments. They will retain some revenue and provide support services for their citizens.

Friday, November 9, 2012

One Useful Election Take Away

The PEW Internet Project reports that social media played a major role in this election. If your organization or business is not communicating via social media and following what your members and / or customers are saying via social media, please consider doing so. Go here for more of the story about emarketing: http://www.mktcom.net

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Election = Grassroots Works

The recent election did give us at least one certainty: Internet empowered (social media) grassroots organization works.

Taking this observation to heart, I propose we now have a chance to Do Things Differently and change the USA for the better. America.2, the New American Dream, implemented locally via grassroots organizations is one step in that direction.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

My Heart Weeps

My heart weeps for the people of the east coast USA: New Jersey, New York, the Carolinas, Virginia, all of New England and inland, too - Pennsylvania and Canada. The devastation is mind-blowing; Sandy’s wrath over the past few days has left thousands homeless, businesses closed and millions without power.

Those who love their families know that they can not stand by while nature rips their lives apart.

What can we do differently this time to at least try to prepare for the next natural disaster? Isn’t there something we can do?

Yes, there is.

There is one major action step we can take. We can convert to distributed power generation and move away from total reliance on 1900s technology – central power generation.

Let’s begin to minimize our vulnerability by employing the technology which is at hand. Each home and business can now generate sufficient power to meet electrical needs without drawing on power from the local power plant. Yes, even in sun deprived areas, too.

We know there will be more bad weather events in the future. It’s time to apply our intelligence and our technology to take the steps to protect those we love.

Distributed power generation is one step we must take. We can no longer wait. We must begin now.

Go here for the Charlie Rose interview of Jeremy Rifkin, the Third Industrial Revolution:


And, here for the IKEA story:



Monday, October 29, 2012

America.2, The New American Dream

You have the Power!

Do you know you can out tea party the most extreme tea party people; out conservative the most ardent conservative and out liberal even the most zealous liberal? You can also even out capitalist the most despicable, Wall Street, avarice-prone “banker”, too.

 America.2 is the second American revolutionary plan. It’s a revision of the 1776 version which created the USA and you are one of the revolutionaries who will change our world for the better today by implementing it. Together, we will do no harm in the process; maintain local, hands-on control of every phase of the programs; and realize the financial results it creates in our hometowns.

America.2, The New American Dream

How? In America.2 we have fundamentally combined the “best” philosophical foundations of all the political factions bucking heads today and melded them into a revolutionary action plan. It is a plan which will spark our new economy, employ our people in “American Dream” sustaining jobs; reduce healthcare costs; and improve our quality of life.

America.2 is a “go-to-the-moon”, radical, earth changing plan. It’s exciting and inspiring. It’s to live for; it is for your children and your grandchildren.

It’s more tea party than any vehement tea partier ever imagined because it puts personal responsibility securely in the hands of the people.

It’s more conservative than the most profoundly conservative-at-the-core person because it resuscitates local control over energy and healthcare while it minimizes international corporations and federal government meddling.

It’s more liberal than the most zealous liberal could possible imagine because every step of the plan ensures that no harm is done to any person or to our environment while together we create the highest quality of life for all.

Finally, as for those avarice-prone banker / wall streeters, local control translates into: “we keep our eyes on our wallets; and, invest the plan’s resulting wealth in our own hometowns.

Read about America.2 here: http://www.encoreboomer.com/encore_boomer_about.html#plan

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Join With Us - No Matter Who Wins

In the U.S. no matter who wins this November we still have a mission: make our world a better place in which to live.

As a foundation, we base our mission on the pledge: “Primum non nocere” First, do no harm.

By first making sure we do no harm we ensure that each step we take will help all of us and the world in which we live together.

To move toward achieving our mission, I propose a plan and ask your input and dedication to the cause. Please go here to read the plan.

As a member of the boomer generation, I recognize that my days on this earth are time-limited. I also recognize that ultimately I am the master of those days and may choose to direct them as I wish.

I choose to direct my remaining time to achieving our mission.
Please join with us in the Encore Boomer Mission.

Joining is free and not limited to being a Boomer, either. Making the world a better place in which to live requires your day- by-day dedication.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Today, Do What Matters Most

Here’s a novel idea. What if you knew for certain that you had little time left on this earth? What would you do with the days, assuming you’d be granted them?

Recently, after overcoming my negative attitude (or, more likely, months of procrastination) I finally visited one of the U.S. government’s old people websites — you know — Social Security and Medicare.

I’ll skip my: “Who Me? I’m Not Old” diatribe and present my point.

I discovered this “app” on Social Security Online http://www.ssa.gov/OACT/population/longevity.html and entered my gender and birth date. The resulting number brought me back to reality. On average, people of my age and gender have about 20.2 years remaining on this earth.

That’s 20.2 years, barring the world ending or a catastrophic event of some type or another does not intervene. 20.2 years?


Why should I be surprised? In the days of youth, due to intervening national agenda items, like the draft and the Vietnam War, I actually did not believe I’d see my 26th birthday. A few of my high school friends didn’t. Most of the guys in my basic training company were sent to a few weeks of infantry training and then to Vietnam as replacements, right from Fort Polk, LA.

I followed up a few years later and learned most didn’t come home, either —including the drill instructors, too. They already had earned their Combat Infantry badges, but “The Man” wasn’t satisfied and wanted their lives, too.

That was a long time ago.

Back then I decided to concentrate on the things that were in my power to “control”.

The difference between now and then is: today I accept the fact of life that my time here is not unlimited and I may not have another day.

I intend to use every second doing what is most important.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Lights, Please

After months of campaigning and millions of dollars in misleading advertising, most of it outright lies, it’s time for someone to turn the lights on, reveal the garbage for what it is, push it out of the way, and get about doing the business of serving the best interests of the people of the United States.

Good idea, right?

Well, yes, but, hold on a tiny bit. There is just one more thing.

We left a little unfinished business on the table a while ago… that banker stuff… you know… that $7 trillion in home and small business real property equity that is among the disappeared… the thing about “out of control” derivatives, i.e. credit default swaps… and a few other "banker-related" things like fraud.

Well, what can be done?

Fortunately, Robert Reich has a few suggestions to bring us back to correcting some inequities and begin to feed some fuel to our economic engine. For instance: “President Obama should propose that the nation's biggest banks be broken up and their size capped, and that the Glass-Steagall Act be resurrected.” (Please see below.)

Unless you are a member of the top 1% of the US population, there is no reason for you to vote against your self-interest and the interests of those you hold most dear, as well. We all should be voting to return President Obama for another term, if only because he is our best hope of the two candidates for turning the lights on the "banker" issue. Most everyone, save Ann Romney, can see the logic here.

In point of fact... it's really even in the interests of the 1%ers to vote for President Obama, as well. If I were a 1%er I'd want to preserve all that gold in my basement. And, the best way to do that is to do as a former friend says, "...throw a few bones to the undeserving drones, make them feel rewarded," and permit them to make a “living” so they can spend what little we “give” them. That will stimulate the consumer side of the economy once again and we can make even more wealth from their reckless spending and foolishly stupid credit card debt.

Otherwise, the drones (we), might begin to figure things out, open their (our) eyes, and try to equalize things a little bitty bit.

How Obama Can Smoke Out Mitt: Call for Breaking Up the Biggest Banks, and Resurrecting Glass-Steagall

By Robert Reich
Chancellor's Professor of Public Policy, University of California at Berkeley; Author, Beyond Outrage

Posted: 10/18/2012 11:27 pm Huffington Post

President Obama should propose that the nation's biggest banks be broken up and their size capped, and that the Glass-Steagall Act be resurrected.

It's good policy, and it would smoke out Mitt Romney as being of, by, and for Wall Street -- and not on the side of average Americans.

It would also remind America that five years ago Wall Street's excesses almost ruined the economy. Bankers, hedge-fund managers, and private-equity traders speculated on the upside, then shorted on the downside -- in a vast zero-sum game that resulted in the largest transfer of wealth from average Americans to financial elites ever witnessed in this nation's history.

Most of us lost big -- including over $7 trillion of home values, a $700-billion-dollar bailout of Wall Street, and continuing high unemployment.

But the top 1 percent have done just fine. In the first year of the recovery they reaped 93 percent of the gains. The latest data show them back with 20 to 25 percent of the nation's total income -- just where they were in 2007.

The stock market has about caught up to where it was before the crash. The pay and bonuses on the Street are once again sky-high. So are the pay and perks of top corporate executives. The Forbes list of richest Americans contains more billionaires than ever.

And the tax rates of the top 1 percent are lower than ever -- courtesy of their armies of lobbyists.

Mitt Romney, private equity manager and financier -- well within the top one-tenth of 1 percent, collecting more than $20 million a year yet paying 14 percent in taxes because of tax preferences for capital gains and for private-equity -- is the avatar for all that's happened.

Just like the rest of the Street, Romney used other peoples' money to make big bets, leveraging like mad, pumping and then dumping companies regardless of the human costs.

Worse, Romney wants to cut taxes even further on the top 1 percent -- giving them the lion's share of a $4.7 trillion tax cut -- while shredding safety nets the rest of us rely on.

And he wants to repeal the Dodd-Frank Act that goes some way to preventing the worst excesses of the Street.

And this man has an almost 50-50 chance of becoming president?

The President should counter Romney's extraordinary solicitude toward the Street with a proposal to cap the size of the nation's biggest banks so that no bank is ever again too big to fail. And to resurrect the Glass-Steagall Act, which once separated commercial from investment banking.

In the 1980s the ten biggest banks had less than 30 percent of bank depositary assets. Now they have 54 percent. And the four biggest now dominate the Street almost completely. Because lenders and investors know they're too big to fail, the four biggest banks have a competitive advantage over smaller rivals that pose larger financial risks. That means they'll only get bigger.

Breaking up the biggest banks and capping the size of all banks is hardly a radical suggestion these days. The Dallas Federal Reserve Board, which has never been accused of excessive liberalism, has called for it. So has Sanford Weill, the creator of Citigroup, one of the biggest of the big. So has Daniel Tarullo, the Federal Reserve governor charged with bank regulation. So have conservative commentators such as George Will.

It's not too late for the President to advocate these measures. In fact, now may be the perfect time. Besides, it's not as if Wall Street is going to pour campaign contributions into Obama's coffers anyway; the Street is going with Mitt.

Calling for a breakup of the biggest banks and a resurrection of Glass Steagall would smoke out Mitt Romney -- revealing clearly and decisively he's not on the side of most Americans.

ROBERT B. REICH, Chancellor's Professor of Public Policy at the University of California at Berkeley, was Secretary of Labor in the Clinton administration. Time Magazine named him one of the ten most effective cabinet secretaries of the last century. He has written thirteen books, including the best sellers "Aftershock" and "The Work of Nations." His latest is an e-book, "Beyond Outrage," now available in paperback. He is also a founding editor of the American Prospect magazine and chairman of Common Cause.


Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Dear Mr. President...

After reading that the President said he was "too polite" in his debate with Mr. Romney, I had this horrendous nightmare... Mr. Romney, President of the United States, commander of the newly empowered, witch-hunting Tea Party, the FBI, the CIA and the U.S. Military about to "neutralize” the Russians, the Chinese, the whole middle east, plus every registered Democrat, the elderly and people with Latino sounding names… and the French, too… just because he can.

So, I wrote the President a note:

Dear Mr. President,
I have the most respect for you, sir. You have retained your soul and your humanistic compass while serving as our President. For me that is Job One - serve the people - because we know very few in office actually do that.

Job Two is to defend us, and you, from those who have sold their souls and lost their moral direction so that our families might have a fighting chance.

You must never forget that if you lose, we really lose – big time.

Mr. Romney made a major part of his fortune selling cancer-causing cigarettes to the Russian people and a great deal of the remainder selling out the jobs of everyday Joes and Janes to the highest bidder – after ensuring that his gold was "in the bank".

What will he do with the power of the presidency of the United States?

Be polite one more time and Mr. Romney and his 1% supporters will cut your heart out and put your head on a pike – along with ours – the 99%.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

My Brother's Note

My brother sent me a link to a tremendous story about heroes, PRI's The World, "History Detectives Help Return Soldiers Diary To Vietnamese Family".

Items belonging to Vietnamese soldier Vu Dinh Doan rest on a table during a handover ceremony in Cay village. (Photo: REUTERS/Kham) Please click on the image and go to: "History Detectives Help Return Soldiers Diary To Vietnamese Family"
Items belonging to Vietnamese soldier Vu Dinh Doan rest on a table during a handover ceremony in Cay village. (Photo: REUTERS/Kham) Please click on the image and go to: "History Detectives Help Return Soldiers Diary To Vietnamese Family"

The story reminded me about asking our father what among all his WWII memories he felt most positive. He told the story of one night digging his foxhole and remembering a barn not too far away. He went alone to the barn looking for some straw to line his foxhole. He found some, slung his rifle on his back, and filled his arms with straw.

While leaving the barn, two German soldiers came up to him. They had their rifles ready. Dad thought he was dead. But the Germans had something else on their minds. Seeing him, they indicated they wanted to surrender. They couldn’t speak English and he couldn’t speak German. Dad gestured for them to follow him back to the American lines. They all made it back to his unit. Dad must have convinced his buddies that the Germans were surrendering and not to shoot them. That’s what our father remembered as being most positive about his war… to this day I am so honored to have had Dad in my life. He was a hero in so many ways - like the men in this History Detectives, PRI The World story.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

A $Trillion here, a $Trillion there…

Don’t you agree? We need accountable-to-us leaders to steer our national boat, Our USA, toward objectives that make a difference to us, the 99%, (the people who create wealth) such as: sustainable energy, sustainable health care, living-wage jobs, and education.

PBS Need To Know - The True Cost of the Bank Bailout - $12.8 Trillion (Please click on the image below to see video report via PBS.)

 PBS Need To Know The True Cost of the Bank Bailout $12.8 Trillion

Friday, September 21, 2012

Way to Go Canada!

There is a great deal to admire about Canadians. One thing is that the Canadians are sharp, as in highly intelligent, in a wonderfully easy going way. Not braggadocios nor arrogant by a long shot, our Canadian friends deserve credit for doing the right energy thing for their people - something a large portion of the USA “R” side of the political spectrum seems to find repulsive.

What have the Canadians accomplished? How about: “an unprecedented $7 billion private sector investment in Ontario to create the largest cluster of wind and solar power anywhere on the planet.”

Here's the story: Samsung C&T, together with some of the world’s leading renewable energy companies, "under Samsung’s Green Energy Investment Agreement with the Government of Ontario, will create 16,000 jobs, kick-start a new industry in Ontario and generate 2,500 megawatts of clean energy – enough to power 600,000 Ontario homes."

Not that it’s been an easy road to this tremendous accomplishment, because the Canadian wing of the anti-sustainable energy people still are hard at work trying to sidetrack solar and wind energy development.

Go here for press info: http://www.samsungrenewableenergy.ca/latest-news and here for how the Canadians are working to make this investment pay dividends: the Ontario Sustainable Energy Association (OSEA) http://www.ontario-sea.org/ and please take a look at Ontario’s Long-Term Energy Plan, “Building Our Clean Energy Future”. (PDF)

 Ontario Sustainable Energy Association (OSEA)

Thursday, September 20, 2012

AttaBoys Humana & Walmat! for First Healthy Foods Incentive Program

In what could become the beginning of a "game changing" healthy living trend, insurance provider Humana and mega-store Walmart announced (19 Sept 2012) a joint program to encourage one million members of Humana's wellness program, HumanaVitality, to purchase healthy groceries. Beginning 15 Oct, members will receive a 5% discount on purchases of healthy foods labeled with a “Great for You” icon."

The program's objective is to: "steer customers toward healthier food choices and potentially push down health-care costs — while driving people into Walmart stores".

With more than 40 years marketing experience, I believe this program is not only in the best interests of customers, but also a smart marketing move, that is, in the corporation's interest, too. It's also an excellent example of the "good" side of American-style capitalism.

Go here to read The Washington Post story, "New Humana program rewards purchase of healthy groceries", by Sarah Kliff, http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/new-humana-program-rewards-purchase-of-healthy-groceries/2012/09/19/9f3473f8-028e-11e2-8102-ebee9c66e190_story.html?hpid=z3

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Dilly Dally, Mitch McConnell... Same Person?!

Am I wrong? Or, does Republican Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell look like famed TV star Dilly Dally from the 50s Howdy Doody Show? You be the judge! For more insight, click on the image and watch this clip from the show: (Sorry, the "Dilly Dally can't remember clip" is no longer available. The core is that Dilly Dally never remembers. For me, that's proof enough that Dilly's lookalike will continue not to remember that he is in Washington, D.C. to work for the people of the USA and not at the beck and call of Mr. Grover Norquist.)

O.K. I know you're wondering about the Howdy Doody Show... so go here for a few moments of pure snap, crackle and pop nostalgic heaven!

James Carter IV Hero Award

Only Do Good for Humanity

Incase you didn’t see this, it was a Carter who is responsible for getting the video of  Romney to the Mother Jones reporter. Therefore, James Carter IV has earned the Only Do Good for Humanity award.

I call Carter's work  “divine intervention.”

Jimmy Carter is a great man. He has a soul.

Romney must have forgotten his soul amidst his stash of gold bars in his basement.

Jimmy Carter’s grandson describes furtive efforts to arrange release of secret Romney video
By Associated Press, Published: September 18AP

 WASHINGTON — Midway through a routine Internet search, James Carter IV stumbled upon a video that just didn’t seem right.

The grandson of former President Jimmy Carter and a self-fashioned Democratic opposition researcher, the younger Carter had watched countless hours of footage of Republican Mitt Romney and made it a habit to search YouTube every few days for keywords like “Romney” and “Republicans.”

The candidate’s comments about the "47 percent" come at the worst possible time for him politically.

But on this day in August, one clip jumped out. There was Romney, in an undisclosed location, bluntly discussing a visit to a Chinese factory with substandard conditions.

“The hidden camera video — it was all blurred out at the beginning, and it was mysterious,” Carter said. “It piqued my interest.”

Something told him there might be more there than the brief clip posted on the YouTube channel “Anne Onymous.” Although not affiliated with any campaign or super PAC, Carter had made it a personal mission to help get Democrats elected in 2012 — and to do his part to push back against Romney’s relentless campaign-trail mockery of his grandfather.

So Carter, 35, of Atlanta, set out track down the source of the video. He sent a message to the YouTube user seeking details. No luck. But then, after sharing links to the video on Twitter, Carter realized he had a new follower with the same name as the YouTube account. He quickly shot off a direct message.

“They were wary at first,” Carter said in an interview with The Associated Press. “But they did respond.”

What followed was a delicate, concerted effort to convince the source — still unknown to the public — that Carter could be trusted, and that the world had to see the rest of what was surreptitiously recorded as Romney spoke in May to donors who had paid $50,000 a person to attend the private fundraiser.

In a string of Internet conversations, Carter showed the source evidence that he had helped David Corn, a journalist with the magazine Mother Jones, report a story about Global-Tech Appliances Inc., a Chinese firm that Romney’s Bain Capital briefly invested in. Both Carter and the source suspected it was that firm’s factory that Romney was speaking about in the video.

“That gave me credibility,” Carter said. “They opened up to me a little bit.”

Soon after, Carter persuaded the source to trust Corn with the full video — on the condition that he keep the source’s identity a secret. Corn ran with it, using clues in the video to triangulate when and where it had been recorded.

Then on Monday and Tuesday, Corn posted the clips to his magazine’s website, sparking a firestorm for the Romney campaign over remarks claiming that nearly half of Americans “believe they are victims” deserving government help and that the Palestinians have no interest in peace with Israel.

“James: This is extraordinary. Congratulations! Papa,” the former president told his grandson Tuesday morning in an email obtained by the AP.

For Carter, whose Twitter profile notes he’s looking for work, his success in unearthing the video was followed by a string of job offers Tuesday, from the Ohio Democratic Party to online news sites like The Huffington Post and ThinkProgress.

But the coup de grace for Carter is the irony that Romney has spent many months assailing the elder Carter’s record on everything from foreign affairs to small business policy, hoping to saddle the incumbent president with the less popular vestiges of his Democratic predecessor.

“I’ve gotten a lot of Twitter messages from people supporting me and saying that it’s poetic justice that it was a Carter that uncovered this, considering the way that the Romney campaign has been talking about my grandfather,” Carter said. “I agree with that sentiment wholeheartedly.”


Monday, September 10, 2012

Hero Nuns

Since my childhood I have considered nurses, nuns and certain clergymen and doctors to be the real heroes of our times. Others like them have historically been the "first responders" when it came to fighting for those who could not defend themselves. Many have lost their lives trying to right social injustices, and certainly, today, they make the difference to millions of everyday Joes, like me.

To say that I was impressed with Sister Simone Campbell's presentation at the recent Democratic National Convention is very much an understatement. She brought tears to my eyes with her clear and uplifting presentation as she related her experiences.

While I have come to consider myself a humanist rather than a religious person of any variety, I feel Sister Simone and her colleagues are heroes, ranking among the most outstanding examples of "the good" which Christianity and the Catholic Church, in particular, has to offer. Why? Because they are standing up for those who have repeatedly been and continue to be the victims of our profit-first society.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

It's About Jobs... New Economy Jobs

Mayor Julian Castro delievered a tremendous keynote speech at the recent DNC. He is also right on target on jobs for San Antonio, too. Under his predecessor, San Antonio launched Mission Verde, modeled upon successful sustainable energy programs already underway in Europe. Mission Verde is San Antonio's unique blend of the essential elements - investment, education, training, power companies, big corporations, neighborhoods, small businesses, local government and residents - all actively involved. It is the new economy based upon sustainable energy. It is working now. Other U.S. cities are also launching their versions of Mission Verde, as well.

San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro

HuffPost video. Interview with Mayor Castro following the Huffington Post-sponsored "Opportunity: What Is Working" jobs panel Wednesday, 5 Sept 2012, at the DNC. Click image above to see video or go to: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/09/07/julian-castro-dnc-jobs-panel_n_1865684.html

Friday, September 7, 2012

Who Will We Put into the Driver's Seat?

There were many great speeches last night in Charlotte, with Gov. Granholm's presentation among the best of the best. Last night she was GOV. ELECTRIC!

A few detractors immediately claimed her presentation was "bizarre" and "over the top".

Well, yes, her delivery was animated and performance was charged, even "electric", but in my view now is the time to be over the top and charged-up about the things that matter most. After all, we do have a choice to make in November. We have a path to choose.

For the first time in my life, I see this election offering our nation a distinctly clear choice between the two candidates and their respective "party platforms".

We are in a fight for our beliefs and Gov. Granholm came through with a powerfully motivating presentation for Pres. Obama... and, FOR US as in USA!

Here is the text:

"Good evening, I'm Jennifer Granholm, from the great state of Michigan, where the trees are just the right height! Let me tell you a story about the dark days in my home state. Towards the end of my time as governor, Ford closed one of its biggest factories, a factory in Wixom, Michigan. The Wixom plant had employed thousands of middle-class men and women in neighborhoods near—yet worlds away from—the place Mitt Romney was raised.

When Ford's decision hit, I went down to the local union hall. It was almost empty; a few workers milled about in shock and grief. I talked to a 45-year-old guy who told me, "This is the only place I've ever worked.

I've been loyal. I've done everything they've ever asked. And just like that, it's gone." He looked around the hall and said, "So, governor, is it over for us? Is the American auto industry dead?" Honestly, at that moment, I just didn't know. And that was just the beginning. When the financial crisis hit, things got a lot worse – and fast.

The entire auto industry, and the lives of over one million hard-working Americans, teetered on the edge of collapse; and with it, the whole manufacturing sector. We looked everywhere for help. Almost nobody had the guts to help us – not the banks, not the private investors and not Bain capital. Then, in 2009, the cavalry arrived: our new president, Barack Obama!

He organized a rescue, made the tough calls and saved the American auto industry. Mitt Romney saw the same crisis and you know what he said: "Let Detroit go bankrupt." Sure, Mitt Romney loves our lakes and trees.

He loves our cars so much, they have their own elevator. But the people who design, build, and sell those cars?

Well, in Romney's world, the cars get the elevator; the workers get the shaft. Mitt Romney says his business experience qualifies him to be president. Sure, he's made lots of money. Good for him. But how did he make that fortune, and at whose expense?

Too often, he made it at the expense of middle-class Americans. Year after year, it was profit before people. President Obama? With the auto rescue, he saved more than one million middle-class jobs all across America. In Colorado, the auto rescue saved more than 9,800 jobs! In Virginia, more than 19,000 jobs! In North Carolina, more than 25,000! Wisconsin: more than 28,000 jobs! Pennsylvania: more than 34,000! Florida: more than 35,000! Ohio: more than 150,000! And in the great state of Michigan? President Obama helped save 211,000 good American jobs. All across America, autos are back! Manufacturing is rebounding! Why? Because when Mitt Romney said "Let Detroit go bankrupt," who took the wheel? Barack Obama! When America was losing 750,000 jobs per month, who gave us a lift? Barack Obama! When American markets broke down, who jump-started the engine? Barack Obama! And when America needed it most, who got us rolling again on the road to recovery? Barack Obama!

America, let's rev our engines! In your car and on your ballot, the "D" is for drive forward, and the "R" is for reverse. And in this election, we're driving forward, not back. Let's re-elect our great president, Barack Obama!"

Thursday, September 6, 2012

We Have Plans

After the past two nights unexpectedly spent watching the Democrat's convention, my eyes have been opened and I feel a tremendous relief that I can see once again. The soul of America has survived.

I had given up hope and came to believe that I was alone fighting against the dark forces. But with my own eyes, over the past two nights, I saw thousands becoming empowered and charged .

A few months ago I confess I felt that was next to impossible.

So, I decided to give it one more try and present the options – plans – to whomever I could reach. That’s how the Encore Boomer Movement began and why I’ve launched a new website: www.encoreboomer.com

Check it out. We have a new economy to build. We have a way to create new jobs and make our communities whole again. And, importantly, we have a way to take back our homes, our savings and a new way to live healthy.

The Encore Boomer Movement

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Heroes Paid the Ultimate Price so the "I's" Can Claim: 'I did it all byMyself'

Just home for a few days after becoming an officially minted “medic” at Fort Sam in San Antonio, I remember my dad talking with me that fall day.

He had tears in his eyes when he asked me, a kid of 21 with no combat experience and no real medical training, if it could have been possible for him to have saved his best friend who had be shot in the chest while they manned a machine gun against a German Army attack in WWII. He propped his friend up in the back of their foxhole and kept firing the gun as they were nearly overrun. When he looked back a few minutes later his friend had died.

Overcome with empathy and love for my hero father, I knew he was suffering a traumatic loss he would never forget. He believed he could have done something more to have saved his friend.

To this day I cry for my father.

Oddly, I was reminded of my dad’s anguish that fall day in 1971, when I listened to Gov. Granholm’s plea to Pres. Obama to become the leader we need.

Yes, Gov. I agree.

We need leadership now, not more of the empty-headed selfishness exhibited all last week in Tampa.

We need the leadership because the sacrifices which gave us our nation were extreme to the max and made by millions of everyday Americans. They were the kids from Everytown USA who paid and to this day are paying the price so the “I”s can claim they did it all by themselves.

Gov. Granholm: Please Pres. Obama Be The Leader We Need Now!

Video no longer available.

Some of The Media Are Getting It

Melissa Harris-Perry has earned my respect with this interview. After years of seeing empty suits and plunging blouses I had surrendered to the mediocrity I found and stopped watching TV/cable “news” programs entirely. I see Ms. Harris-Perry’s interview as an island amid the garbage that passes for “news” today. I applaud her “presenting the facts” and hope that more of the "media" might also follow her lead by confronting the issues and calling out the falsehoods when they are so blatantly offered as truths. Ms. Harris-Perry has renewed my faith and I’ll continue to seek penetrating, investigative journalism which is in search of the facts about the serious issues which we confront us as individuals and as a nation.

Faith in TV/cable News Restored
Go here to watch this video

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Serfdom or Indentured Servitude?

How a U.S. voter could vote for Mr. Romney is a total mystery to me, since he has come to be the poster child for every negative, regressive agenda imaginable. If elected, Mr. Romney will doubtlessly never rest until every American is reduced to serfdom and his buddies have all the gold safe in their basements. They all will still own homes, too, while the rest of us will have lost ours to the too-big-to-fail banks.

Do I exaggerate? Perhaps. But, just a tiny, tiny, little bitty bit. Maybe serfdom is the wrong word. He might just rather see the entire U.S. labor force reduced to indentured servitude.

Do you require proof?

Well, while I’m not much of an Eliot Spitzer fan, the former Gov. of New York recently posted an outstanding comparison of Pres. Obama’s tax plan position with Gov. Romney’s position. Based upon a recent Brookings Institution and Tax Policy Center analysis, here is what Spitzer wrote in his article, “Romney’s Tax Plan Would Lower Taxes on the Rich, and Raise Them for Everyone Else”, Slate, Eliot Spitzer, 1 Aug 2012:

Compared to what?
That is the question Rep. Barney Frank wisely suggests we ask when evaluating different pieces of legislation, or for that matter any public policy proposal. That question seems especially appropriate today, when tax issues are back on the table before Congress. House Republicans today voted down the tax proposal passed by the Senate to extend tax cuts for individuals with incomes under $200,000 and couples with incomes under $250,000, to let marginal rates on incomes above that level revert to Clinton-era levels, a boost of about 4 percent. 
At the same time, we now know more about the proposal Republicans will support—the proposal from Mitt Romney—thanks to an analysis done by the Brookings Institution and the Tax Policy Center. These two eminent and reliable outfits, not ideologues of either side, conclude that the Romney plan would raise taxes by a total of $86 billion on the 95 percent of Americans with incomes below $200,000. That's a tax increase of about $500 per household. In contrast, Romney would lower taxes for the 5 percent of Americans with incomes above $200,000 by about $86 billion. This is the Republican plan.
So now we know the answer to Barney Frank's question: compared to what? The Republicans oppose a plan that lowers taxes for 95 percent of the population and raises taxes a small bit for those with income above $200,000, yet support a plan that lowers taxes for the top 5 percent and raises them on everybody else!
Think about the lack of logic of that. As an economic matter, they have it backward. We need desperately to drive consumption up, so the best thing to do is get funds to the middle class, whose consumption will be triggered, not to raise their taxes and give more money to the wealthiest—so-called "job creators" who clearly haven't been creating jobs and who will most likely put the new-found cash into savings.
The choice the Republicans make is one they are free to make—if they want the increasing divide between the wealthy and the less wealthy to get even broader!
As a matter of politics—and it is not for me to give them advice on this score—polls show that the public favors the Democratic plan by about a 3-1 margin, which is one of the reasons Romney is trailing in key swing states of Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Florida.
The Republican vote today and the new analysis of the Romney plan help clarify the choice we are facing. This election isn't about awkwardness at the Olympics or a rude press secretary: It is about economic growth and economic justice. These are the choices that matter.

For me the choice is obvious. But, then again, it’s just me. After all, in the way long ago, a few of my ancestors came to the colonies looking for a better deal and to escape serfdom. Their great, great, great, great, really much later, grandson is not looking to reprise serfdom. So, he’ll be voting for Pres. Obama. Go here for the Slate article:


Monday, July 9, 2012

For Your Loved Ones & For Your Health – Stop Eating Sugar-LoadedProcessed Foods Today

Right now, today, it is within your power to reverse obesity, greatly improve your health and reduce your health care costs. It is within your personal control to greatly reduce or eliminate from your life the most common diseases most Americans face -  the eight chronic metabolic syndrome (insulin resistance) diseases: heart disease, lipid (blood) problems, hypertension, type 2 diabetes, cancer (especially breast and colon), polysystic ovarian syndrome, and dementia.

Can it be possible that our national obesity pandemic, as well as the eight most common metabolic diseases are in large part the result of our diet - specifically, our over-consumption of high fructose corn syrup (HFCS)?

The answer to this question is an unqualified, yes.

Recent scientific studies conducted under the auspices of University of California San Francisco, Harvard, Princeton University, Beth Israel Deaconess Cancer Center, University of California Davis and the American Heart Association now offer scientific proof that at least eight of the most common “controllable” chronic conditions are influenced by, if not “caused” by, over consumption of fructose-loaded global industrial diet in particular.

Further, the obesity epidemic itself is in large part a direct result of “sugar addiction” similar to alcohol and cocaine addiction brought about by the ubiquitous use of fructose in nearly 100% of process foods sold to the public.(1)

After years of consumption of massive amounts of HFCS, we, the consumers of the global industrial fructose-laced diet, are in serious trouble physically and our nation is near the healthcare breaking point financially.

Consumption of mega amounts of HFCS is now proven to link directly with at least eight of the most common diseases which affect 60% ofU.S.population and total 75% of global healthcare expenditures.(2)

 How can this be?

It was the discovery of the hormone, leptin, in the mid 1990s by RockefellerUniversity’s Jeffrey M Friedman, MD, PhD, which opened the doors to eventually understanding the insulin-metabolic syndrome connection.

Today, it is generally accepted by the medical community that the chronic metabolic diseases are linked to insulin. The more insulin produced by the body, the more incidence of the diseases.

Leptin is produced in the fat cell and goes to the brain to tell the brain to stop eating, limit what one eats and to start exercising.(3)

Obese people produce lots of leptin. But it is not working, telling the brain to stop eating. If leptin were doing its job then you wouldn’t be obese. Discovering the cause of “leptin resistance” is the key to understanding obesity. “How come leptin used to work 30 years ago and does not work today? Our research has demonstrated some very specific, significant findings. I can sum it up in one word: insulin,” explained Dr. Lustig in the UCTV Prime, 7-part series, “The Skinny on Obesity” (Ep. 3) video.

Dr. Lustig and his UC colleagues have demonstrated that the answer is in how the body metabolizes fructose. They have found that our livers deal with fructose differently than sucrose or glucose and it is this metabolic process that creates fat, which eventually leads to obesity and chronic metabolic syndrome.

Why “A Calorie Is A Calorie” Is Not Enough Information

Perhaps the most difficult obstacle to overcome in the fight to reduce obesity is the general misconception that is held by many in the medical community and government officials: a “calorie is a calorie”.

A calorie is a measure of energy derived from a food source. A gram of fat has a little more than twice as many calories as protein or carbohydrate.

MDs, nutritionists, dietitians, public health professionals were all taught, and are still being taught, that no matter the source molecule, they all translate into calories, and the more calories one consumes the more calories one must “burn”. If one does not burn the calories through exercise, the body stores them as fat and basically that’s why we become fatter.

“The “calorie is a calorie” argument is widely used by the processed food industry to explain that weight loss isn’t really about what you eat but about how many calories you eat. But if it were just about calories, you could eat only sugar and be fine. In fact, you’d die: sugar lacks essential nutrients.” (4)

To be sure, eating too much, especially the “wrong” foods, is a problem. Not exercising is also a problem. Both contribute to obesity – but in a relatively minor way when compared with the role played by sugar, specifically fructose.

We now know that our livers metabolize fructose molecules differently than sucrose molecules. Additionally, after ingesting the mega doses of HFCS-packed foods which most of us consume each day, our livers quickly become overwhelmed and the fructose molecules are “metabolized to fat”.(5)

Here is how Dr. Lustig explains it:

“Sugar, because of its unique composition, is the only food on the planet that is both fat and carbohydrate at the same time. Even fatty fruits, coconut, olive and avocado, have no carbohydrate. There is no food stuff on this planet that has both fat and carbohydrate at the same time — except for sugar.”

“Sugar is made up of two molecules: glucose and fructose. And, they are very different.

“Glucose is metabolized by every organ in the body. Every organism on the planet can digest, absorb and metabolize glucose. Eighty percent of the carbohydrate glucose that one consumes is metabolized by all the organs in the body and only 20% goes to the liver.

“Fructose can only be metabolized in the liver because only the liver has the transporter for fructose. One hundred percent of fructose goes to the liver. So, you are overloading your liver and that’s the rub. Fructose goes straight to the mitochondria and then to fat. A little bit of glucose goes to glycogen until it’s replete and it goes to fat as well, and, you have a recipe for mitochondrial disease. When you have mitochondrial disease you get sick.

“Fructose is a chronic, dose dependent, hepatotoxin which is just like alcohol. In fact fructose, the sweet part of sugar, is more like alcohol than it is anything else.

“Alcohol is metabolized to fat and so is fructose, driving more liver fat than it can export; more liver insulin resistance which drives the pancreas to make extra insulin; driving energy deposition into fat cells peripherally; driving weight gain; and the extra insulin is driving high blood pressure; driving heart disease; driving cell division which leads to cancer; driving changes in the brain which lead to dementia; and when your pancreas can’t make enough insulin and it burns out, it drives diabetes, as well.”(6)

For years we have been told by the government and the healthcare industry that obese people are gluttons and lazy.

But, we now know otherwise. Dr. Lustig and other respected researchers have proven that obesity and the related metabolic diseases are in large part the result of our consumption of vast quantities of HFCS-laced foods.

Unfortunately for all of us, the “obesity epidemic” is truly just a marker, as Dr. Lustig says, for a much more serious problem that will require societal changes of huge proportions.

The solution(s) we must implement in order to “right the ship” will demand much more than eating less and exercising more. And, once generally reported, those solutions will face unbelievable opposition from growers, processors, transporters, the chefs, the healthcare community (to name only a few interest groups) and, us, the consumers.

If that weren’t enough of a challenge, we also now know that like alcohol and tobacco products, HFCS foods can become as addictive as cocaine. (7)

“No one chooses obesity. Obesity chooses them... How long do you believe you can exert a cognitive inhibition (willpower) control over a biochemical drive that goes on 24/7/365, getting worse every single day that you don’t perform it? No one can exert willpower over a biochemical drive that goes on every minute of every day of every year. It’s just not possible.” — Dr. Robert H. Lustig, MD (8)

Finally, if the facts above have not yet convinced you to stop eating sugary foods, please go here and watch this CBS 60 Minutes segment:


1. “Sugar the Bitter Truth”, Dr. Robert H. Lustig, MD, UCSF Professor of Pediatrics in the Division of Endocrinology University of California, UCTV Series: UCSF Mini Medical School for the Public [7/2009] [Health and Medicine] [Show ID: 16717] http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dBnniua6-oM

 2. “Sugar the Bitter Truth”, Dr. Robert H. Lustig, MD

 3. “The Skinny on Obesity”, 7-part series, (Ep. 3) UCTV Prime, Dr. Robert H. Lustig, MD, UCSF Professor of Pediatrics in the Division of Endocrinology University of California; Elissa S. Epel, Ph.D., Associate Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at UCSF. She is also a faculty member in the Health Psychology Postdoctoral Program, the OsherCenterfor Integrative Medicine, and the Robert Wood Johnson Health and Society Scholars Program. She is one of the founders of Center for Obesity Assessment, Study & Treatment, University of California, San Francisco (COAST), and is serving as a Co-Director; Barbara Laraia, PhD, MPH, RD, Associate Professor, Department of Medicine, UCSF, Co-Director,  COAST, http://www.uctv.tv/search-details.aspx?showID=23592

 4. “Is a Calorie a Calorie?”, The New York Times, Mark Bittman, 20 Mar 2012, http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/03/20/is-a-calorie-a-calorie/

 5. “The Skinny on Obesity”, 7-part series, (Ep. 2): Sickeningly Sweet, Dr. Robert H. Lustig, MD, http://www.uctv.tv/skinny-on-obesity-sickeningly-sweet/

6. “The Skinny on Obesity”, 7-part series, (Ep. 2): Sickeningly Sweet, Dr. Robert H. Lustig, MD

 7. “The Skinny on Obesity”, 7-part series, (Ep. 4): Sugar - A Sweet Addiction, Dr. Robert H. Lustig, MD, http://www.uctv.tv/search-details.aspx?showID=23717

 8. “The Skinny on Obesity”, 7-part series, (Ep. 4): Sugar - A Sweet Addiction, Dr. Robert H. Lustig, MD

Friday, July 6, 2012

Fiddlers All... But Only in America!

While our leaders “fiddle” other world leaders are actually trying to bring their economies back from the abyss and solve energy problems while employing their people through sustainable energy technology. At least they have a plan... what a novel idea!

Once again, our “competition” is being led by an American. From Mr. Peabody’s WABAC Machine: Some automotive people are old enough to remember Dr. W. Edward Deming. The Japanese automotive people adapted some of his ideas while American auto industry leaders “fiddled.” Those smart Japanese not only ate our lunch but our supper, too!

Once again, it’s an American (Jeremy Rifkin) showing others the way to prosperity while our leaders contemplate their navels. Here's one of Rifkin's interviews:

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Leaders Dilly Dally… We Must Act

While the politicians squander our national wealth and worse stomp our Can Do Spirit into the ground, millions of U.S. citizens face starvation and home foreclosure. Worse we face a future without hope.

We simply have no more time left, nor patience for the political party game playing and for Congress to remember how to work for the people of the United States.

Will Congress (Dilly Dally) remember how to work for the people of the United States? (Click image to find out if Dilly Dally remembers!)

Will Congress (Dilly Dally) remember how to work for the people of the United States?

(The original post directed you to a Howdy Doody Show TV clip. Sorry, the "Dilly Dally can't remember clip" is no longer available. The core is that Dilly Dally never remembers. For me, that's proof enough that the Republicans, led by Dilly's lookalike Republican Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell , will continue not to remember that he is in Washington, D.C. to work for the people of the USA and not at the beck and call of Mr. Grover Norquist.)

As a society we must waste no more time hoping that our leaders will finally decide to do their jobs and actually do what is necessary to help millions of Americans. In fact, historically, it has always been up to the people (that’s us) to make the government get down to the business of actually doing what’s best for the nation.

It’s our duty, our heritage, to be the people of action our ancestors were also forced to be in their time.

I propose we begin by locally implementing two actions plans. Together, we will put people back to work and generate funds for our local communities:
Sustainable Healthcare Plan
Sustainable Energy Plan

Plan details will follow in my next post. (Go here for the Encore Boomer Movement Plan: America.2, The New American Dream.)

Monday, April 23, 2012

Only Do Good for Humanity Honor Award

Today we honor and acknowledge outstanding dedication to humanity.

The first honor award has been earned by Paula Reid, Secret Service Special Agent in Charge of the Miami office. Reid, while at the risk of losing her position and career, did not shrink from performing her duties and dismissing agents for “conduct unbecoming” while protecting the President of the United States.

Second, and equally deserving, we honor and acknowledge the Leadership Conference of Women Religious for not shrinking from their love of humanity. Risking excommunication by their Church they have continued to work for the betterment of humanity.

Only Do Good for Humanity


Saturday, April 21, 2012

Dance of Intimidation

I was up early this morning working.
Digg, the news service, sent digg digest for the week of 11-18 Apr 2012. It led me to the video of a few people protesting drone warfare outside of the entry gates at Whiteman Air Force Base.

I watched. This video brought tears to my eyes. Not because of the hymn singing or the message offered by Kathy Kelly, a three-time-Nobel-Peace-Prize nominee.

No. I wept because of the unmitigated, police state presentation of intimidation “danced” by the Missouri State Police against a few older, non threatening U.S. citizens who were begging that our government consider spending less on defense.

Asked why authority (power over others) is abused, a friend responded, “Because we can.” Meaning, we have the power so we will use it. In this case, one good thing did happen… the officers didn’t beat the women with their clubs.

"Dance of Intimidation" Performed by the Missouri State Police.

Monday, April 16, 2012

A National Civic Leader Has Emerged

With the announcement by Pew Charitable Trusts of its collaboration with former Gov. Jennifer Granholm to launch a national campaign for clean energy policies that create jobs, stimulate innovation, spur investment and enhance America’s competitiveness in the global clean energy race, the national civic leader we so desperately need has emerged.

Gov. Granholm is a proven, competent and articulate advocate for progressive concepts which, if not derailed by the suicidal Republican Party leadership, will lead our nation out of the current recession and into a promising future of sustainable energy. Worldwide, similar programs have been underway for nearly a decade and they are providing not only the impetus for new technology but also large scale employment and renewal of cities and towns.

This is a major moment for our country in many ways similar to the drive to put a man on the moon. The door is now opening toward a new world for us driven by our need to become less dependent upon carbon-based fuels and reduce greenhouse gases. And, while the Sustainable Energy Revolution is already stimulating rapid technological change in solar, wind and hydro energy, the most important change it will bring about is a rebirth of our national “can do” spirit.

Former MI Gov. Jennifer Granholm Joins with Pew Charitable Trusts

Pew Interactive Map: Who’s Winning the Clean Energy Race? 2011 Edition

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Now I Understand!

How Did Mitt Make So Much Money And Pay So Little in Taxes?

Robert B. Reich, Chancellor’s Professor of Public Policy at the Goldman School of Public Policy at the University of California at Berkeley. He has served in three national administrations, most recently as secretary of labor under President Bill Clinton.

Friday, March 30, 2012

A Real Superhero

It's late Friday afternoon. It's been a tough week and a hard day. I'm in need of a Superhero to look up to. On second thought, I realize no matter what my problems are, they are zero in comparison to those of many, many others.

I did find are real superhero, though. His name is Lenny B. Robinson. In case you missed the story, here is an oustanding article written by Michael S. Rosenwald, The Washington Post, "Who is the Route 29 Batman? This guy." >>> http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/rosenwald-md/post/who-is-the-route-29-batman-this-guy/2012/03/28/gIQA8nPjgS_blog.html?hpid=z6

Robinson talks to Jayden Deleon-Talbert, brother of Khloe Deleon-Talbert, a patient being treated at Children’s National Medical Center, at the annual Hope for Henry Superhero Celebration. / Allen Goldberg The Washington Post 30 Mar 2012

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Community Promtion on the Cheap

Even in good times many communities believe they don't have the dollars to invest in making themselves attractive to visitors. Shortsighted as this outlook is, it is still “king” in many of the communities in which we live in Michigan, for instance.

If the community fathers and mothers were only looking and listening they’d see and hear an Internet-based, smart phone superhero riding to their rescue.

This solution is inexpensive to implement and maintain, as well as much more effective and appealing. All it takes is good old project management, writing / editing, and graphic design combined with website development skills. All those skills are resident in most local communities. Take a look at what NYC did two years ago:

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Really, How Bad Is It? It’s Outrageously Bad.

Paul Krugman, Robert Reich, the whole 99% movement, among others, have underscored the fact that the U.S. middle class is no longer middle nor a class. Over the past 30 years we have become zeros in the great political game orchestrated by the super wealthy 1%ers. For us, literally, the American Dream no longer exists. We have not only lost our wealth, our homes, our retirements and our jobs, but also our voice in Washington.

However, the authors of Winner-Take-All Politics, Jacob Hacker and Paul Pierson are still optimistic that we can retrieve American Democracy from the hands of the now in control American Oligarchists. Please see Bill Moyer’s interview below.

Jacob Hacker and Paul Pierson, authors of Winner-Take-All Politics: How Washington Made the Rich Richer — And Turned Its Back on the Middle Class

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Let’s be the First International / Regional Energy Node

S.E. Michigan, N.W. Ohio and Windsor, Ontario, Canada, should join together as a region and follow the lead of the City of San Antonio which has adopted and is implementing a sustainable, alternative energy plan called Mission Verde. San Antonio-owned CPS Energy is a partner in the Mission Verde program.

Soon, San Antonio homeowners, businesses and government units will be producing their own energy and employing their people in a new industry - converting homes and businesses to sustaining power generating units and operating a revolutionary distributive power system.

Mission Verde is based upon an earlier program, also created by Jeremy Rifkin, which was adopted by the European Parliament in 2007. It is now being implemented by various agencies within the European Commission as well as in the 27 member-states. Rifkin is an advisor to German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Germany is the lead country in the program.

In his recent presentation Rifkin underscored that areas, cities, regions around the world will soon become collaborative, distributed power "nodes" selling harvested energy to other cities and regions. Please watch this video:

Jeremy Rifkin is the author of The Third Industrial Revolution. He is a senior lecturer at the Wharton School’s Executive Education Program at the University of Pennsylvania—the world’s #1 ranked business school—where he instructs CEOs and senior management on transitioning their business operations into sustainable Third Industrial Revolution economies.

Rifkin’s Huffington Post blog: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/jeremy-rifkin

Go here for Mission Verde info >>>

City of San Antonio Mission Verde

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

This Belief Made the USA

On September 12, 1960 a candidate for the presidency of the United States gave a speech to the Greater Houston Ministerial Association of Protestant Clergymen in affirmation of the historic American belief in separation of church and state. A belief which he as a Catholic-American, I underscore, put his life in jeopardy to uphold while serving in the Navy during World War II.

Recently, another candidate for the presidency, Sen. Rick Santorum, stated that he “almost threw up” after reading Sen. John F. Kennedy’s comments.

Here is what Sen. Kennedy said that day:

Sen. Santorum does not agree with the view that the government must not endorse one religious faith over another. That’s why I, a Presbyterian by family tradition, believe a vote for Sen. Santorum would be a mistake.

In my book if you want to be the representative of the people of the United States, then you damn well need to represent all of us, not just those who happen to agree with your particular religious view.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Dardesheim, Tiny German Village Leads the World

Nearly 20 years ago visionary civic leaders of Dardesheim, a tiny German village located north of Switzerland, made a courageous decision. They decided to devote their community and personal resources in an all out effort to become, “Germany’s renewable energy city” and become 100% energy independent.

Back then, these civic leaders decided that their concentrated community effort would pay off not only in cheap electricity to power their homes and businesses and new jobs for their people, but also, possibly, in a monetary return to be realized by selling excess energy to other communities.

They were right.

Today, through a combination of wind, solar and biomass energy alternatives, Dardesheim is energy independent and produces enough power from wind turbines alone to “meet the needs of nearly all 80,000 resident of the surrounding county.”

“Proponents intend that the projects spread their economic benefits throughout the community. According to Heinrich Bartelt (one of the leaders behind the Dardesheim 100% renewable energy village concept) the community's investment in the project has become a development engine for the entire region. All the investment from the project stayed in the region, becoming the raw material for new local job creation. (Enercon a wind turbine manufacturer, in nearby Madgeburg, employs 3,000 and has become the largest industrial employer in the state of Sachsen-Anhalt.)"

Go here for more>>>

Elsewhere, the World Future Council and HafenCity University have established an International Commission on Cities and Climate change. The twenty members strive to identify best policies for sustainable urban development. Additionally, Munich, Boulder, Wildpoldsried, San Francisco, Barcelona, Woking, Sydney, and Copenhagen are engaged in becoming less dependent on fossil fuel.
Go here for more>>>

Finally, the European Union has about four years on the USA when comes to renewable energy. The Germans are leading their charge, too. They’ve transformed about 20% of their energy use into renewable energy, away from carbon-based fuels. The other European nations are expecting to reach the 20% renewable energy goal by 2020.

Jeremy Rifkin, principle architect of the European Union's Third Industrial Revolution long-term economic sustainability plan, and others, are working with cities, regions, and national governments to develop master plans to transition their economies into “post-carbon Third Industrial Revolution infrastructures”. In 2009, Rifkin and his team developed Third Industrial Revolution master plans for the cities of San Antonio, Texas and Rome, Italy, to transition their economies into the first post carbon urban areas in the world.

See my previous post. Go here>>>
Listen to Rifkin’s description of the “Third Industrial Revolution.” Go here>>

So, what are we waiting for? It’s time we put that often self-proclaimed American Ingenuity to work and establish our own centers of excellence at our universities and seriously encourage collaborative community-based renewable energy programs like the Germans have done!

It’s Déjà Vu All Over Again

During President Teddy Roosevelt’s term, 1901-1909, Mark Twain wrote about the U.S. Army torturing Filipino insurgents and slaughtering civilians during the Philippine-American War. One torture the Army used was called the “water cure.” Our CIA used the same technique in Iraq and Afghanistan, But, it's now named “water boarding.”

“There have been lies, yes, but they were told in a good cause,” Twain wrote, ridiculing the government with his acidic satire. “We have been treacherous, but that was only in order that real good might come out of apparent evil.”

Not much has changed over the past 100 years. We are still telling lies, torturing people and denying it all. Oh, and we are still accusing people of betraying the USA, just as Twain was accused, because they are outing these repugnant offenses to humanity.

Candice Millard, "Looking for a Fight", review of Honor in the Dust, Theodore Roosevelt, War in the Philippines and the Rise and Fall of America’s Imperial Dream, by Gregg Jones, New York Times Book Review, pg 13, 19 Feb 2012. (“Déjà vu…” quote offered with apologizes to Yogi Berra.)