Writers, here’s an opportunity to change the world: https://medium.com/economicsecproj/into-the-black-a-short-fiction-contest-with-a-big-prize-f91cd6553967
Whether sitting in an ivory tower or the Eiffel Tower, one understands that the meditative stance is the trance one achieved long ago.
Detaching human names from accomplishments, ideas and pronouncements, one observes the local phenomena of fractal spinoffs in a single solar system and nods in agreement with oneself that all is as it should be.
In one’s life, briefer than a wooden match burns to light a candle, one learns that being busy is not the same as goal-oriented activity.
One’s goals include lighting a candle for every human one knows and two for every human one does not know.
Do lumens illuminate?
What are names?
Only labels or symbols?
If an infant is assigned the name 345#%9*0hoj4;ls’, what is the effect on that person’s life?
Is your name a password? To open/access what?
What is language?
The Sun speaks to the balls of rock and gas circling it in a language of its own star class within the larger class of celestial bodies in motion.
We make headway in social changes using our own unwritten languages, forging agreements in thin air, in brightly-lit spaces and dark, dank rooms.
Two ideas in opposition meld when mutual benefit is found in the right bullet points.
Violence is not inherent in the system, simply a carryover of our barbarian, animalistic behaviours when civilisation was still in its infancy — it will be part of our civilisation for many, many more generations to come, no doubt, coded in our genetic traits such as “fight or flight”.
Changing the topic, the subject, the object of inequality is a choice we make, deciding where the imbalance of the flow of natural resources is, finding its weighted center and shifting it first in our thoughts and then in our physical actions.
Working with those whom we perceive are pushing the inequality on us is not always the first choice in our tendency to see violence and resistance as part of the natural order.
We can choose to be Sisyphus or the boulder. We can take the boulder away from Sisyphus and replace it with an idea whose weight is determined by its impact on others, giving Sisyphus a new meaning while performing the same task.
The best way to address inequality: change the rules of the game, change the playing field or choosing not to play?
What if the word inequality itself is a misnomer?
What if one side falls into the trap of believing it’s supposed to play the role of victim or victor?
In the competition and cooperation for the use of natural resources — locally limited, nearly universally unlimited — one makes choices, one has opportunity costs, sunk costs and hidden costs.
Avoid doublespeak in one’s thoughts to directly address the concept of inequality.
Use one’s language to understand the core issues, listening to the description of the core issues in the languages of others to see where the language barrier is the strongest and sometimes only core issue.
Inequality is a concept.
Equality is a work in progress, the daily interaction that requires nothing more than understanding we who use this language are humans sharing the same genetic code.
Many data points to ponder, wondering if they connect at all, in no particular order:
- The definition of work
- The definition of meaningfulness and its varieties
- The percentage of what we currently call our species who participate in the social framework we call the economy
- The percentage of what we currently call our species who participate as “workers” in the social framework we call the economy
- The percentage of what we currently call our species who participate as “workers” in the form of “employees” in the social framework we call the economy
- The percentage of what we currently call our species who participate as “workers” in the form of “employers” in the social framework we call the economy
- The definition of fully/partially employed
- The definition of [independent] [sub]contractor
- The definition of living wage
- The alternative to participating in the economy in the form of a [non]fulfilling life
- What does independently living off the land mean when extraterritorial entities claim watch over the land on which you live and demand their definition of recompense from you for watching over/caring for you in the form of services/physical infrastructure you may or may not use?
- How many people have no comprehension of the following statement?: “Citizens of a nation demand that their employers must pay the citizens as employees no less than $15/hour to manufacture products/services profitably.”
- What does employable mean?
- What does poverty mean?
- What [kind of] right does a person have who lives on land which an extraterritorial entity claims watch over, for that person, to claim the extraterritorial entity provide equitable access to education/employment opportunities for that person that other people have created for themselves with or without [in]direct support by the extraterritorial entity?
- Is there such a thing as a perpetual cycle of poverty/technological* illiteracy?
- Is there such a thing as a perpetual cycle of wealth?
- How much accumulated wealth is too much?
- Is there a fair argument that no family/corporate entity has lasted virtually forever?
- How many people can’t or don’t want to work in the economy?
- How many people want to work in the economy but can’t find/create work?
- Why are some people content devoting much of their waking energy to working in jobs for others?
- Why are some people driven to work for themselves and/or have others work for them?
- At what number of employees and average wage can a company in a particular industry compete locally/nationally/regionally/globally and still remain in business (i.e., generate enough profit to operate (assuming that intentionally operating at a loss is not a goal for this question))?
- Should the un/underemployed be broken down by physical/mental characteristics/categories for problem-solving purposes?
- Should the impact of a slower/smaller economy on the environment weigh into keeping wages/employment below capacity?
- What level of disruption by one group of people will have to take place on another group of people and/or the extraterritorial entity which watches over them both to encourage/introduce change desired by the first group but not necessarily the second?
- Will the impact of sleepiness stop the questions being written by this author on this one?
*Language is as much a technology as the logical combination of ones and zeroes that create this WYSIWYG user interface on the Internet.
Many of my conservative friends used to tell me that the government kept secret kill lists and secret tracking lists, following us by our cell phone GPS signals and Internet usage so the government could arrest or kill us at any time — I would either keep quiet and think they were being a bit paranoid or try to reason that it was too costly for the government (let alone private companies like Google) to track so many people.
The Snowden leaks proved them right and me wrong.
What if the other things my conservative friends and family tell me are true?
- Are Bill and Hitler Clinton longterm Soviet communist/socialists sleeper cells?
- Is President Obama secretly following a Black Panther/Islamic agenda?
- Is Ronald Reagan the greatest U.S. President ever?
- Are we living in an Animal Farm world where some pigs think they’re more equal than others now that they’re on the podium, getting there by promising a more equal world until they got their hands in the till?
- Will the banking and financial sectors, which were barely slapped on the wrists for causing the Great Recession, cause another economic meltdown because they feel invincible now that they’re “too big to fail”?
- Are urbanites planning to steal land from the ruralites, incarcerating and killing those that get in the way of corporate greed to own all the means of food production and oil/mineral reserves?
- Are corporations like Monsanto trying to own all the seeds that feed the people, in cahoots with a “star chamber” to control the whole population?
- Was Obama brainwashed by Chinese communism when he lived in Indonesia?
- Do we live in a dystopian technocratic society where our leaders with no formal military ethics training kill their own people using push-button, remote-control drones without getting blood on their hands?
- Do cell phones cause longterm cancer?
- How exactly does fluoridated water work on the brain?
- Are cell phone towers secretly sending massive brain control signals?
- Are mosquito control spraying programs the localised version of “chemtrails”?
- Do the FBI and CIA create false files on people so they are kept in constant fear that they can be arrested at any time for any reason whatsoever and shipped to secret torture sites out of the country and out of the view of the American public, thus making the American people more accepting of socialist programs like Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, and the Affordable Care Act?
- Do large corporations purposely keep employee wages so low that they’re forced to rely on the government for food and thus unwilling to revolt against a suppressive government?
- Is there a list of more conservative fears I could find to investigate these questions I never took seriously before Edward Snowden opened my eyes to the reality that “just because you don’t believe they’re tracking you doesn’t mean they aren’t”?
- Does the UN stockpile weapons in your city in anticipation of largescale riot control when food and water become scarce, driving prices out of reach of most people?
- Are government scientists secretly developing a Soylent Green program to convert huge numbers of incarcerated people, arrested for the flimsiest of reasons, including being upset because the police raided the wrong apartment/house, into food when the time is right?
- Could a teacher really be so drunk on vodka that she could get by with walking the school hallways wearing no pants?
Thank goodness I know that Richard Nixon was the greatest U.S. President who ever lived!
On days like this, finding ways to entertain myself is endlessly fun!
[On a side note, while typing this up, I got a call (“Hello. This Rachel from cardholder services…”) that the Caller ID said was from my own phone number. How funny is that? (And how easy it is to create your own Caller ID info, if you know how.)]
My life right now: feeding a microwaved mix of canned food and sliced “deli-style” turkey to a cat that cycles through days of sneezing blood and mucus interspersed with days of just-plain gargled breathing; I type with my left hand on the keyboard while in the right arm cradling my little velveteen feline buddy as he falls asleep into the cat dream world of his, sawing branches with his snoring.
Thus, I am not alone.
I eat leftover popcorn and watch “The Giant Mechanical Man.”
I do not like deciding the fate of others but I go ahead anyway, stirring the pond’s waters and redirecting the pebbled waves I quietly dropped in my monklike meditation.
It — the mysterious two-letter word that commands attention at the beginning of this sentence — is no easier now to order the elimination of labeled beings we train ourselves to see as the Others, “them,” as it was the first time I let peer pressure push me to end the life of a being that could not live in the hustle and bustle of so-called modern society.
I is one letter less than it.
I am this artificial label for a relatively dense set of states of energy we sometimes say is a human being.
A head concussion in high school split my brain apart.
Ever since then, I have reconstructed the universe in small quantities and big ideas.
Something about my corpus callosum bothers me.
Gray matter matters, too.
I have stopped drinking alcoholic liquids/beverages.
I have dedicated at least one book each to my parents, my wife, Monica, Ann P., Maggie and who else? I have not finished the book I plan to dedicate to Jenn.
I can say what a book is not but can I truly, really say what a book is?
Twenty-one days since I last checked the Mars countdown calendar.
My next book to read: Sagittarius Rising.
It’s vocation reminiscing week — today’s job well-remembered, if not remembered well:
working as an instructor for three terms/semesters for the vocational trade training business known as “ITT Technical Institute,” teaching incoming customers (i.e., students) about learning methods, Python programming language and SuSE Linux-based computer servers.
And one last glance back at my sewer flow monitoring job — while I was working with Rick and Adam, we moved on to Erie, Pennsylvania, for another temporary flow monitoring project. In the middle of the project, I flew down to Cape Canaveral to see my brother in-law’s experiment, called BATSE, catch a ride on a space shuttle launch, completing the circle for when I worked on the space shuttle main engine controller at Rocketdyne in the 1980s after the Challenger accident, which was even more fitting since the founder of the sewer flow monitoring company worked on the Apollo space program (he was part of the German rocket team designed the V2 rockets under the guidance of Wernher von Braun), turning the life science telemetry equipment from measuring astronaut blood flow into measuring the flow of liquid through sewer pipes — technology transfer! Meeting interesting friends along the way…
Before ADS, there was my first real corporate office job, working for GE Aerospace on the U.S. Navy test equipment called CASS, to whom us humble employees were awarded coffee cups for a job well done!: