Total Pageviews

Thursday, October 12, 2017

President Trump And The First Amendment

be sure to read the article at the link above

"Freedom of speech and of the press served one purpose in America: To remove the fear of the common law doctrine of seditious libel so citizens could freely speak or publish without license their grievances against public policy or conduct of public officials. One of the distasteful things found under the common law was the government practice of criminalizing or shielding itself through requiring license to publish of any criticism it felt made people dissatisfied with their government or government established religion."

It hasn't taken one full year for President Trump (previous link just added is a discussion on Democracy Now on the topic of the danger President Trump presents to America and the world) to reveal his sentiments about civil liberties, his plans for Americans and the constitution in general. His response to a vibrant and healthy free press is not what many in the free world expect to hear their leader say. Many are worried that their fate and that of the nation is in the hands of "A  Moron" as the Secretary of State is reported to have said.  

The President has savagely opposed the use of the first amendment urging restrictions and urging loss of employment for those who use their liberty contrary to his will. 

Anyone familiar with the protocols associated with the U.S. Constitution understands immediately his feelings about freedom and liberty and above all the freedom to speak ones mind are patently un-american. These attitudes of his do represent a clear and present danger to the practice and the concept of liberty.

Here are some of the things he has said regarding our constitution and our liberty just recently in the past several days. The cat's out of the bag. The President hates our freedom to speak our mind and so don't Muslim terrorists according to former President Bush. But no Muslim ever told me to shut-up. has recorded the President's words for posterity to reflect on. 

“It’s frankly disgusting the way the press is able to write whatever they want to write,” Trump told reporters later in the Oval Office. “And people should look into it.” 

"With all of the Fake News coming out of NBC and the Networks, at what point is it appropriate to challenge their License? Bad for country!"

A President who disrespects the constitution is in the wrong occupation. He's supposed to protect and defend the constitution not dismiss it as bad for the country as the present office holder has done.
These statements by the President should be enough evidence for anyone in congress to conclude he is unfit to protect and defend the constitution. 

He does not like the way some people use their rights. That means he doesn't understand the nature of rights. That makes him unfit to be leader of anything but a gulag, certainly not the free world.

Some have concluded his savaging of the first amendment could be cause to remove him from office.

 What do you think?

Benjamin Franklin pipes up:

Benjamin Franklin, writing in The Pennsylvania Gazette, April 8, 1736, wrote of the American doctrine behind freedom of speech and of the press:

Freedom of speech is a principal pillar of a free government; when this support is taken away, the constitution of a free society is dissolved, and tyranny is erected on its ruins. Republics and limited monarchies derive their strength and vigor from a popular examination into the action of the magistrates.
The above quote is found in The Federalist Blog

Monday, September 25, 2017

Web Repair Meditation (video and essay)

While sitting in the yard I noticed a spider had attached a web to a potted sunflower I had recently moved. The spider was repairing it's web. Either that or it was building it from scratch. Whatever it was doing, it was  a fascinating process.

I set my camera on a tripod about 4 feet away using a telephoto lens and tried to frame the activity. The early afternoon sunlight was coming from behind the web. It made seeing difficult.

I noticed first off that the spider was working counter-clockwise. Then I began to take note of the dexterity and coordination of the spiders entire organism in relationship to the task at hand. 

I began to pay attention to all the little legs moving purposefully and smoothly in coordination. It was like watching an experienced dancer or figure skater or mime. The dance floor, if you will, took on the appearance of an old bicycle wheel with wire spokes. Each silken 'spoke' being attached to the rest of the 'spokes'. When you watch the video you'll see. It's quite amazing what this critter has done.

I took multiple video clips of the spider of various lengths. At the time I was photographing the light was blinding and I was unsure what the camera was seeing. It actually came out pretty good. The very last clip I shortened and changed to one quarter speed. The result is a crystal clear detail allowing the viewer to examine the web repair technique of the spider and hopefully find yourself a little in awe. Imagine having to do something like that yourself!

I was impressed with this little critter on many levels. It not only accomplished this amazing task, it appeared to do it while facing backwards and extruding the thread from its abdomen and attaching it to the existing structure while facing the opposite direction all the while in counter-clockwise movement.  

At some point I began to speculate on how the web design began. It appeared to me that the entire web was built utilizing a longer, possibly thicker thread. The thread extended from the sunflower on one side which appeared to function as an anchor, to another plant on the other side having the same function. The center of the web appeared to be in the center of this central thread.  

It was a fascinating few moments


Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Throwing Babies On The Floor (Poetry)

I wrote the poem below after taking stock of the last several years of American history. You may recall some of these events. I remember them all.


  Throwing Babies On The Floor

                            the President has been spreading lies

              A Poem Derived From Recent History

about throwing babies on the floor
to reap the profits
he adores.

Profit has always been this nation's God

and for profit we have toiled,
for profit the nation's life is spent
and for profit the nation's life 
is spoiled.

he said,
were thrown on the floor
and left for dead,

so he barred terrorists at the door
and resumed the making of profit
from the making of war.

In times like this
sometimes I think,

at other times
I need a drink

or a toke…

Because now I know
there were no babies on the floor…
but there really is
Tall tales?
it's time to say

NO MORE to fake news
and NO MORE millions
need die.

Shout to the hilltops…
the President
is the 'Father' of lies.   

(C) David H. Roche 2017

Thursday, September 07, 2017

From Bad To Worse

From Bad To Worse

(late edition.  Came across this documentary on the life of Pete Seeger and thought:  "This guy sees the world pretty much the way I do."  It's a documentary on his life with the discussion of some good ideas not often entertained in the Mainstream Media, but they are ideas which are useful to us at this time in our experience.)

It has slowly dawned on me that America is not on the mend. It's this climate change / break-down that is shaking the world and has woken me up.

Now, finally now, it is evident that the way of life chosen by industrial nations is responsible for this current blitzkrieg of climate revenge. We had declared war on nature, but eventually it was determined we were outmatched.

In other words we have been engaged in killing the planet and ourselves for a long time but we didn't know it. However now we do know. It's way past time to avert the calamity we as a species have produced. Nature, our opponent of choice, has chosen to react. But it is not too late to change our minds. 

I knew this before in an intellectual way. I had poetry published for the very first Earth Day in 1970. 

To the right is a photo
taken of the pages of
the Nickel Review which was 
published in Syracuse, N.Y. in the late 1960's and early 70's. 
It's not really a great poem.

This plight of the environment is an issue I've been aware of for a long time.  I've always spoken against poisoning the environment. However I think in the back of my mind I felt sooner or later people will see what they are doing, come to their senses and stop doing it. So far I was wrong.

Now I understand the attack on the environment as being a personal attack on every individual on the planet. Already 7 million human beings die prematurely every year from effects related to air pollution. You see, environmental pollution IS a violent physical attack on your well-being!  We all live 'downstream' of the pollution, so to speak. We all breathe the same poisoned air.

I consider those doing this kind of harm to the general living space of humanity to be eco-terrorists. However the ones trying to stop them from doing it are being arrested as criminals. The Corporate Media reports it as if the polluters are in the right. If the Corporate Media reported all the details the people who consume that information would make the attack on the earth stop. You would, wouldn't you? Such is the failure of the Corporate Media.

It is time to recognize that those political decision makers who have made the most primary decisions regarding the welfare of life on the planet have utterly failed those people who drink water and breathe air. However they have served Corporate People who do not need air and water with the greatest of faithfulness.

The failure they have produced is evident today in the condition of the environment. They have done it in support of the health of the economy which is defined by the prosperity of Wall Street and not by the ability of the planet to support life or for your ability to enjoy life.

This dereliction of duty by those in control has not gone completely unnoticed. Thanks to the Alternative Media such as Democracy Now, and the work of Chris Hedges and many others, this dereliction of duty has been explained in a way sure to appeal to those accustomed to making rational decisions based on humanist values.

However on the other hand there is the Corporate Media which functions as an information outlet for the State, (status quo) promoting the nation's wars and identifying its alleged enemies and providing topics for political wrangling to consume the mental energies of the populace. 

I regard the Corporate Media mainly as a means of misinforming the general public with the purpose of getting folk to think and talk about the same meaningless political topics which are designed to alienate one group from another.

It was corporate policy to build a pipeline which is destined to bring about the death rattle of Mother Earth. It has been the policy of the Corporate Media to explain to the viewer that those opposed to the pipeline were criminals. This has just played itself out and is still playing itself out. Just imagine if a flood takes out one of those tar sands pipelines, or a wild fire! Take a look around you.  Are you in a flood, a wildfire? Somebody is burning down the proverbial house out here on the West Coast. I suspect the dangers of a possible occurrence will not have much airtime in the Corporate Media until a couple of days after the disaster. But today we have big floods and large fires where before there were none.  It's happening in Houston, it can happen in a town near you too.

It is the Alternative Media which tackles these topics. The status quo is willing for you to bicker between left and right and Russia and emails and corruption in political places. But you get the feeling that the impending devastation of the planet by the products of manmade climate disruption isn't worth much time and space to the Corporate Media.  It seems they wish to keep political discussion at the 'panty raid' level.  And it seems to be working.

Which, again, is why the Alternative Media's role is so important. The Corporate Media has completely washed its hands of encouraging a serious discussion on the human caused environmental calamity which is upon us. The momentum in favor of proceeding on with climate devastation could be abated if the amount of time spent on Donald Trump's pomposity was substituted for in-depth rational appeals to abate climate death, and biocide. But don't hold your breath!

A society which will take away the quality of life on the planet in exchange for wealth is a spiritually dead society. To engage in such activity is the greatest disrespect that can be shown to the Creator. In the words of Alex Grey's World Spirit "America, you have sold your soul for a little capital."

Men have been told to fear the wrath of God and have imagined a fire breathing angry man in the sky hurling lightning bolts. And so they laugh at the idea. But the wrath of God is more like Karma. It's something we do to ourselves in defiance of the Creator; things like poisoning our air, food and water while burning the planet down around us or some other such foolishness. It is our presently chosen way of life which requires us to behave like this.  We're waist deep in the big muddy once again. The big fool is still saying to push on.

I made the video below in response to the corporate assault on the planet. 

Saturday, August 26, 2017

We're Watching You: surveillance with a twist

We're Watching you

Surveillance of the unexpected kind. 
A spiritual reverie 
inspired by an afternoon in the yard
and explored in digital art.

Summer's Day Serendipity
is another video I made.  
It is completely different 
designed to be relaxing,
and peaceful.

(C) 2017 by David H. Roche

Friday, August 25, 2017

Morning Meditation

Morning Meditation

Shortly after sunrise
I picked  five small tomatoes
to be sliced
added to rice and chicken
and served with bread, cheese and cranberry juice
which reminded me
to take a package of pork chops from the freezer
for tomorrow.

I don't even know if there will be a tomorrow.
Whenever I check it's always NOW!
Frankly I'm becoming suspicious
of this 'tomorrow' concept.

If NOW turns out to be
what does that say about

What does that say about NOW?

Whether it's now, yesterday or tomorrow 
      those pork chops will be eaten.

        That's the important thing.

art and poetry by David H. Roche 

(C) 2017

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

The Bupkis President

Bupkis is a colorful word with a variety of applications. The most common way it is used is to describe something as having no value or being useless.  

It does have a more descriptive meaning. The word is Yiddish in its origin and has to do with the value of animal feces. It usually means something that is completely unsuitable for the purpose to which it is applied.  A pungent and more animated meaning of the word is 'shivering shit balls' according to Wiktionary the free dictionary.

I've only heard the term used once and it was on the Dick Van Dyke television show from the 1960's. If memory serves me it was used to describe having been unable to get done what needed to be done.  He got bupkis..

That brings me to the thoughts on President Trump.

President Trump has been associated with a rise in racial problems due to his rhetoric involving White Supremacy and its adherents. Never one to back down the POTUS doubled down.  Inciting the incendiary forces of racial bias is something I've seen before in men with power like Governors George Wallace and Orval Faubus.  The two men used their words and position to bring out the very worst in the human spirit. From the response of President Trump it is apparent to some that he is treading down that same path and we, as a nation, are now seeing the fruit of his words and attitude.

That's the problem the American people are confronted with.

How to address this problem is a problem in itself. Americans are reflexively violent. Violence is a problem solving tool for many Americans. If they have a problem they go to 'War' with it. There must be a better way of problem solving.

My personal feeling is that our problems are indirectly caused by the way the economy has been managed by its Republican and Democratic caretakers.  This New York Times article by Eduardo Porter  shows how the mismanagement of the economy has left the Average American holding a bag of magic beans, such are empty promises. Empty promises are all the Republicans and Democrats are capable of producing. Service to Wall Street's brand of capitalism mandates that they behave this way. 

The indirect effects that afflict the Average American include a way of life that no longer offers a hopeful vision. There no longer is an American Dream we will wake up to find ourselves in.  All we have is a writ of empty promises from the Republicans and the Democrats. There never was a realized American Dream. Behind the scenes,like the wizard in the Wizard of Oz, this present nightmare was always present like a virus deeply embedded in the body politic. It has insidiously eaten away at the meaning of freedom so much that what passes for freedom is hardly recognized as freedom

I want to see the problem solved by a change in the national priorities which would correspond to a change in the human heart. If the reality of an ever shrinking quality of life is not arrived at damned soon, life in the U.S. will become completely unbearable. Perhaps we were seeing the first fruits of such a system of income inequality in the streets of Charlottesville. This is a harvest we must avoid at all costs.  Peter Joseph offers an alternative that deserves consideration if only because it is NOT the same old same old tried and failed way.

How do we avoid it?  We will not solve our problems by using violence. Violence is the tool of the oppressor.  We must change our mind.

What kind of changes can make Capitalism a People Friendly experience instead of the way it is now? We must change our mind. Continuing the way we are now cannot lead to a positive outcome.

When I look for a solution to this situation I begin with the human being and inquire into 'what is the human being'?  The Republicans and the Democrats define the human in terms of the economy and human life is valued in dollars.  They must do this because service to Wall Street requires they do so.  For Republicans and Democrats the human is not a human being, not a homo sapien, but an economic creature designated  homo economicus

We, however, are not homo economicus, ie economic creatures.  We are homo sapien(s), human beings.  By nature we are spiritual creatures for whom there is a destiny available by virtue of our being.  

I have no idea if things can be turned around. Americans have been driven to distraction by the media and political institutions of their own society.  The only way they can change their mind and then change their society is to come to a clear understanding of what is creating these intolerable conditions.  That understanding will not be spoon fed to them by the big time media.  

The understanding will come from the suffering masses and their prophets, men such as Chris Hedges.  

The change resulting from understanding who and what institutions are responsible for our rapidly deteriorating society, unless accompanied with a change in the way we understand ourselves, will fail.  

When we as a society no longer value human beings in terms of dollars and Wall Street profits we have the keys in our mind to view ourselves 'spiritually' as human beings. By repudiating the authority that labels us and treats us as homo economicus we are born again politically. 

By reclaiming our destiny as human beings we able to reclaim an identity that extends to the beginning of time and can be extrapolated to continue to go on forever. I've found that the work of physicist Tom Campbell has opened up vistas of understanding in this regard. If reality is the way he says it is violence and fear have no justification to exist.  A compelling synchronicity of ideas is revealed with the same conclusion reached concerning the meaning of Logos.  

It is this concept of Logos that is the 'ground of being' that provides a spiritual identifying marker on the human being. We are spiritual because of the identification we have with Logos and as such the future has no end.

There will be complications, of course, but if it is understood we are gonna keep on keeping on and that there is really nothing to lose but bad karma there is every reason to turn to love and peace instead of violence and greed and endless warfare and misery.  

The best way to deal with a bupkis POTUS is to ignore him and smile on your brother and sister. It's up to you and me to make the kind of world we as human beings want. Remember Trump is working for the Republicans and the Democrats and they are working for Wall Street and Wall Street will have nothing to do with peace and prosperity for you. We're pretty much going to have to solve these problems without that unholy trinity acting as project manager. 

I made a video of some of my art, didn't know what to do with it but now it seems to fit here.

A Far Country

Monday, August 21, 2017

She Never Has A Nice Day (poetry)

She Never Has A Nice Day

The dog on its leash squats
and turns around 
sniffing the grass.

The woman leading the dog on the leash
she never smiles...

when laughing at someone's misfortune.
I know her well.

After she yanks abruptly on the leash
the dog bounds up the steps
wiggling from one end to the other
waiting expectantly at the door.

The woman follows,
stomping up the steps
opening, entering 
and slamming the door behind her.

I know her well,
she never smiles,
she never has a nice day.

(C) David H. Roche 2017

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

The Jesus Statement (Poetry)

The Jesus statement is a poem I wrote yesterday while thinking how crazy the people in America have become. We've taken up sides and now are tearing each other apart.  Americans like to characterize their culture and nation as a 'Christian' nation, a light to the world.  A casual observation of the goings on in the streets of America is also an observation of what is going on in the hearts of Americans. The light, apparently, has grown dim.  (found this lecture on fascism and the Christian right by Chris Hedges after posting.)
Frankly, Jesus the figure found in the four gospels of the New Testament, would not identify with many who claim the name of Christian.  I don't either.  But there is something about this man Jesus and his example of self sacrificing love that when placed side by side with the current goings on makes him look like someone worth emulating. His social sensibilities, his ability to see through the bullshit, his enduring love, hope and faith are what is lacking among us.  If we are to help ourselves, and we are the only ones who can solve this problem, we must make these sensibilities active through love and respect for each other. The lack of these sensibilities is what we're seeing in the streets of America. Making 10,000 laws will not help, there needs to be a change of heart. When the heart is changed all things are possible.

Jesus had good sensibilities.  He cared if you were impoverished or ill, he cared if you were spiritually deluded or spiritually unfulfilled.  That for me is the crux of the matter.  The soul of America has turned from the light and so it has become dark.  
Hatred is darkness, 
love is light, 
war is darkness, 
peace is light. 
It's time to smile on your brothers and sisters. 

The Jesus Statement

and I didn't care,

for the needs of my siblings

Those who follow me will sigh,

with their fellowman.

(C) 2017 by David H. Roche

Sunday, August 13, 2017

It's Worse Than First Imagined: the continuing saga of Donald Trump and the woes of the American people

It's worse than first imagined.  The problem confronting and disrupting the lives of the American People is NOT merely Donald Trump.

The President has, as may be indicated by the following NY Times video, had the effect of a rabble rouser with some segments of the population.  What prompted me to write is the so called 'Alt-Right' incident in Charlottesville, Virginia, recently.  The Washington Post has a predictable, well conceived piece of reporting condemning the incident written by Petula Dvorak.

I supported neither Trump or Clinton. I felt both were equally capable of creating more problems (wars) to spend tax money on. I am not as eager to lay the blame at the feet of Trump as easily as some are willing to do. It takes two to tango. The American people own a lot of the responsibility for what happened in Charlottesville as we approach the anniversary of peace and love known as Woodstock.

What I mean is that Trump's attitude would not have been so contagious if there were not sensibilities that resonated with his words and his attitude. While it may truthfully, in my opinion, be said that Trump's words and demeanor aided and abetted a rise of unpleasant attitudes in this nation he could not have been successful if a number of folks didn't already agree. 

Leaders, after all, get their power from followers and the two feed off of each other like a breeder reactor until a critical moment is reached. Now it is apparent that what some voices have told us was rising up in the hearts and minds of the people is NOW materializing, like an evil spirit, in the streets of the cities. 

The seed of hate has been planted, we are witnessing the approach of harvest. The voices previously raised in warning have turned out to be prophetic. Is this when, we who have sown, must now reap the whirlwind? Karma can be a bitch!

I was about 10 years of age when this behavior of not allowing some people to participate in society was 'socially acceptable' and enforced by law.  Bull Connor, the 'commissioner of public safety' in Birmingham Alabama is a classic example of such behavior.  

Since those days America and Americans have struggled to live up to the American ideal of every human being having civil liberties. Sometimes violently using the law and tradition as a cloak for anti-human behavior the ideals that make America unique came under attack from within Americans themselves. It's as if America could not live up to it's proclaimed ideals.  I wonder if it can. 

Poverty is the result of poor social planning and has multiple effects on society which are negative. The oppressive administration of the economy by the Republican and Democratic lawmakers has exacerbated the decaying social climate creating conditions of social unease and trepidation.

Unemployment, crime, drug addiction, oppression of children and disease comprise only a partial list of the ills associated with poverty. 

I found an informative website titled Poverties (click the link) which reveals the relationship of poverty to the inhumane conditions facing many people in the world today. The website shows how the web of poverty ruins every aspect of society.  Removing poverty may not be the total answer, but I'm willing to think it's about 90 percent of the answer.

My personal feeling is that we need to rethink how to redistribute the income generated by the forces within society.  I'm sure there are a lot of ways to go about this, some better than others.  But if something is not done to make a radical departure from making decisions in the way that have produced these intolerable social consequences the condition of those on the planet will not experience any benefit. If radical fundamental changes are not made of necessity conditions must worsen. Living conditions must continue to deteriorate and sicken if effective corrective action is not taken to reorganize how the economy is administered.

The bottom line is that we have to change our mind about how we go about being Americans and maintaining liberty and justice for all. Rethinking how the economy affects society and what can be done to make the necessary changes is an imperative. 

It is not necessary that society will always have areas of economic dysfunction if the citizens have sufficient means of participating. The current explanation, given by the Republican and Democratic administrators of the economy, has not been challenged effectively by presenting a viable alternative. In a society that requires the free flow of money for the economy to prosper, insuring that the citizen has employment is imperative. In lieu of a job, a disbursement adequate to allow the citizen to participate and enjoy society needs to be established.  In a situation like that society's river doesn't dry up, it keeps flowing. It keeps on Truckin' when there is NO debt... and we're not living on a plantation!

We must change our minds. That is because a large number have forgotten that a very important part of what America means it means for the guy or gal next door as well as oneself. That's the part that has gotten lost in the shuffle of society playing against the backdrop of the current economic miasma which in turn has made people desperate concerning their own future.  

And then a demagogue like Trump rises up fanning the coals of their discontent to life and gives them a social viability that is alien to all that is traditionally American in nature. It is when one is big on his or her own rights and not equally big on the rights of the guy or gal next door that we find ourselves in a state of disorder. The economy at present is being administered with the goal of serving the needs of a class so wealthy those within it have no neighbors.  It is this situation which makes the 'have nots' very fearful... and potentially dangerous! 

Often the average Jane or Joe has no idea who the real enemy of their wellbeing is. If, by chance, they do discover what the problem is and speak out they will often find themselves ostracised by fellow victims. 

The future Trump appears to be proceeding toward has many fearing there will not be a future worth inheriting.  

The U.S. is in a state of disorder. It's politicians are debating whether the citizen's life and wellbeing deserve a meaningful insurance program. In a humane society such an idea would be a given, but not for those who think like Republican and Democratic politicians. 

If a radical change is to occur politicians must begin to stop making laws that serve the healthcare industry and begin thinking about making laws that serve the needs of the voter. That is how radical the change must be.  It is unlikely such an idea lurks in the philosophy that guides the thoughts of the Republican and Democratic guardians of the economy. If a change for the better does not appear to be forthcoming...

 I recommend the following information

that's why you have civil rights!

Blog Archive

About Me

My photo
A practitioner of the art of living with the intent of learning how to die without fear.