Archive for June 30, 2014

ISIS: The Irony of too Many (& the Wrong) Gods


Background: Muslims believe in a single God.  The Taliban is out to destroy others who don’t believe in what they think is the same single God.  Now ISIS, an extra-ruthless faction of the Taliban, is taking their holy war to extremes, assassinating innocent people who get in the way of their steamrolling campaign to establish the One True God.

I find it ironic that they’e adopted the name ISIS.  Yes, it’s short for what they’re after–an Islamic State of Iraq and Syria.  But Isis is an Egyptian GODDESS!  It doesn’t seem right for them to add a god(ess) into their midst, even via their name.

Here’s another irony: Isis was the goddess of love, marriage, and health.  She represented the ideal mother and wife and was a protector of nature.  She was the friend of the little guy, the vulnerable and downtrodden.  Basically, she was the goddess of rebirth and life.

When it gets down to it, Isis represented everything the terrorist group ISIS is bent on destroying!  But I don’t think they’d even understand the irony.


Brain Freeze: Silly Things I Think About

There’s plenty to worry about in the world.  But my mind sometimes wanders into strange territories.  Here’s a concern that hit me today:

If a driver-less car fails to stop at a red light or exceeds the speed limit, who gets the ticket?  If the officer makes it out to me, can I put in a claim to the auto manufacturer?

Thurs. Thought: How to Touch Someone’s Life





Vets, the VA, and Priorities

65% of senior executives at the Veterans Administration received bonuses last year while veterans (we don’t know how many because of record-keeping games) went without care.  I know that I don’t fully understand the system–or any bureaucracy, for that matter.  It just seems to me that not only were the bonuses not earned but also they could have bought the time of a good number of doctors (inside and/or outside VA) to give our vets the care they deserve.

If the VA doesn’t make our vets a priority, then who?



Bungling Burglar–Vain or Stupid?

This guy should get a regular job, because he’s NOT cut out for a life of crime!  In Minnesota, a burglar entered a home and went about his business.  When he spotted the family computer, he checked his Facebook page, calling up his profile.  He got so busy admiring his picture that he forgot to log out before leaving with his loot–but forgetting a personal item or two.

Enter the police, who immediately grabbed the Facebook clue left for them.  They shared his photo on Facebook and posted a message telling the guy that they had some stuff belonging to him and he could have it back if he contacted them.  He texted the police and showed up to pick up his belongings.

He’s in jail, now, probably wondering what went wrong.

No, a lawbreaking-life is not for this guy!  But he’s good for a chuckle at his expense.


Seafood and Slavery: Walmart, Carrefour, and Costco

“They kept me chained up, they didn’t care about me or give me any food…They sold us like animals, but we are not animals – we are human beings.” 

This heart-wrenching quote is from a man sold from ship to ship in Thailand, caught in the trap of slavery and forced to work on a boat that supplies feed to the prawns we buy at the grocery store. 

The three largest grocers in the world — Walmart, Carrefour, and Costco — were named specifically in a new investigation by the Guardian for selling prawns and shrimp whose production relies upon slave labor. One week later,those companies are still refusing to take two simple steps to rout out slavery from their supply chains — and that’s where we come in. 

Human rights activists are demanding Walmart, Carrefour and Costco join Project Issara, a Thai-based initiative to end modern slavery, as well as institute a zero tolerance policy on slavery based on conditions on the ground. Before the spotlight of the Guardian expose fades, let’s raise our voices to speak out against slavery in the prawn industry.

Read more at the SumOfUs website.  While there, sign the petition to tell Costco, Walmart, and Carrefour to take concrete actions to end slavery in their supply chains. 



Computers, Sleep Mode, On/Off–Dangers

The debate continues–“off or on?”  Consider this: by turning off your computer at night you’ll use about 75% fewer kilowatts.  This makes a big difference in an office, where computers use more electricity than all other equipment put together, but it also helps at home.

“I just use sleep mode,” say some people.  “It costs me only about $50 a year more than turning off the computer, and computers don’t like to be turned off and on too often.”

Wrong.  Watch this short video Why You Should Never Leave Your Computer On to see what sleep mode and on/offs mean to your computer.  You can help the Earth AND avoid expenses at the same time!

Leaf 6

[For more easy, money-saving, Eco-friendly tips, download a FREE copy of Green Riches: Help the Earth & Your Budget. Go to view/7000, choose a format, and download to your computer or e-book device. Or download a free copy from your favorite e-tailer.]



Letting off a Little Steam Today….

Waring: I’m venting today on something political that really bugs me–money and the Koch brothers.

At their conference “American Courage:Our Commitment to a Free Society,” they announced their plan to spend half a billion (yes, with a “B”) dollars to get Republicans elected to the Senate, to secure a majority, therefore, power. (This is after they spent hundreds of millions in 2012.)  And not just any Republicans but the ultra conservative ones whose battle cry seems to be “No negotiation–Our Way or Die!”

I don’t begrudge them the right to spend their and their backers’ money in any way they choose.  What DOES bother me is that they’re trying to buy elections. Whether we like it or not, the person with the most financial backing usually gets elected, because they’ve had more advantages of publicity, public exposure (therefore, name-recognition), chances to use negative campaigns against opponents, opportunities to make deals with groups to support him.

It just seems to me that the Kochs are trying to Cook the election, and I don’t like it!



Summer, Kids, and Parents

School’s out, kids are home–many weeks stretch out.  Here’s a summertime quote that contains a solution for many parents.

“A lot of parents pack up their troubles and send them off to summer camp.”  (Raymond Duncan)

[Saturday is the 1st day of summer.  Enjoy!]

Get a Driver’s Licence–Be Drafted

Here’s your new (or renewed) driver’s licence–you’ve now signed up to be drafted.  That could happen to any young man aged 18-26.  A proposed California law (it could happen in your state, too) would send the name of any young man seeking a driver’s licence or renewal to Selective Service to be put onto the Draft list, and he may not even realize that he has just given his consent for that to happen.  SB 2201 has made it through the Assembly and sent to the Senate Housing and Transportation Committee.

If it passes, a young man who opposes war on religious grounds or has a struggling business that will fail if he’s off in the military or has aging parents or a disabled child to care for or any of a dozen other situations–he had better not get or renew a driver’s license.  Sure, some of them will ultimately be excused because of their situation, but Selective Service makes people go through a tough, nerve-wracking process first, especially if a person has “volunteered.”

If you’re a Californian and this bothers you, go to to email your concerns to the Committee and its chair, Mark DeSaulnier. If you’re not a Californian, keep an eye on this bill.  If it passes, watch for it in your own state.